Why a Military Strike against Iran May Be the Best Option

March 17 2015

Is military action to prevent Tehran from acquiring nuclear weapons unthinkable? Defenders of the White House’s negotiations with Iran have repeatedly argued yes. Joshua Muravchik disagrees:

Sanctions may have induced Iran to enter negotiations, but they have not persuaded it to abandon its quest for nuclear weapons. . . . Sanctions could succeed if they caused the regime to fall; the end of Communism in Ukraine and Kazakhstan, and of apartheid in South Africa, led to the abandonment of nuclear weapons in those states. But since 2009, there have been few signs of rebellion in Tehran.

Otherwise, only military actions—by Israel against Iraq and Syria, and through the specter of U.S. force against Libya—have halted nuclear programs. Sanctions have never stopped a nuclear drive anywhere.

Does this mean that our only option is war? Yes, although an air campaign targeting Iran’s nuclear infrastructure would entail less need for boots on the ground than the war Obama is waging against the Islamic State, which poses a far smaller threat. . . .

Wouldn’t destroying much of Iran’s nuclear infrastructure merely delay its progress? Perhaps, but we can strike as often as necessary. . . . The United States would have to make clear that it will hit wherever and whenever necessary to stop Iran’s program. Objections that Iran might conceal its program so brilliantly that it could progress undetected all the way to a bomb apply equally to any negotiated deal with Iran.

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Read more at Washington Post

More about: Iran, Iran sanctions, Iranian nuclear program, Politics & Current Affairs, U.S. Foreign policy

Lessons for Israel from Iran’s Response to the Killing of Qassem Suleimani

Feb. 19 2020

On January 8, just five days after the U.S. killed the high-ranking Iranian general Qassem Suleimani in a retaliatory airstrike, Tehran responded by firing ballistic missiles at two American bases in Iraq. At first it seemed possible that the Islamic Republic deliberately aimed its rockets so as not harm U.S. soldiers, but, Uzi Rubin concludes, information made public since then strongly suggests that the lack of American deaths was “a matter of sheer luck.” Iran, which generally prefers to operate through proxies or in such a way as to maintain plausible deniability, not only took credit for the attack but boasted about its success.

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Read more at BESA Center

More about: Iran, Israeli Security, U.S. Foreign policy