Iran Must be Tackled
June 27, 2003
"Do something about Iran - or we will have to act" was Condoleezza Rice's message to the international community when she addressed the International Institute for Strategic Studies yesterday.
Curiously, the American National Security Adviser's words triggered less controversy than might have been expected. There were a number of reasons for this. First, she did not close the door on multilateral action as the first resort for the administration. She was seeking to give multilateralism some real teeth and thus to rescue it, rather than to bury it.
Second, compared with Iraq, there is a far greater European consensus that Iran's nuclear programme constitutes a real threat. And finally, following recent unrest in Iran, it is no longer possible to sustain the image of the Islamic Republic as a popular, revolutionary regime.
Iran today is rather like Brezhnev's Soviet Union: a powerful state that can challenge the free world abroad but which is ultimately hollow. The Islamic Republic is thus ripe for the toppling. But "regime change" does not necessarily mean military action of the kind that led to the overthrow of Saddam Hussein.
The most promising approach is that of Senator Sam Brownback, who is currently piloting a Bill through Congress that would increase support for the democratic Iranian resistance. Indeed, the happiest model of "regime change" in Europe - Solidarity's successful campaign in Poland - was achieved peacefully with assistance from both Europeans and Americans.
There is nothing very "progressive" or "European" about keeping one of the world's most primitive and reactionary tyrannies in place. http://www.dailytelegraph.co.uk/opinion/main.jhtml?xml=/opinion/2003/06/27/dl2702.xml&sSheet=/opinion/2003/06/27/ixoplead.html
posted on 06/26/2003 7:07:56 PM PDT
The silence is deafening. Have we heard anything yet? I guess it's only 7 AM there, but it's Friday, right? Does anyone have any word on whether or not the mad mullahs are going to carry out their threat?
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