Had we had another man for president this year, Iran’s nuclear facilities might well have been carpet bombed already. Certainly the United States would not have discouraged Israel from undertaking such a venture. But would it have been the smart thing to do?
When even The New York Times advocates military action it must seem to the Iranians as though all of America is committed to attack their country. Fortunately, some voices of reason can still be heard. In the same newspaper, Roger Cohen argues that the American role in the 1953 coup has not been forgotten. “Any American attack would propel 56-year old Iranian demons into overdrive and lock in an America hating Islamic republic for the next half century,” he warns.
Patrick Porter, writing for Kings of War adds that not only is a military strike unlikely to take out all of Iran’s nuclear facilities; it will only strengthen their resolve to develop nuclear energy while undermining the forces of reform.
It could make politics very difficult indeed for dissidents if America gave the regime an external enemy to unite against.
Iranians are still taking to the streets with the regime repeating their accusation that foreign interference is stirring the uprisings. An American airstrike would lend credibility to such a claim, strangling “the next Iranian revolution at birth.”
America’s best chance at diminishing the Iranian threat is to let events run their course for a while. A great portion of the Iranian people appears determined to bring about a modernization of the country’s politics — and hopefully with it, a moderation in its foreign policy.