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Iran is almost about to reach nuclear capability

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Black Wolf
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Was that in reference to my post? Because I'm mostly asking a question of what way of dealing with Iran will result in least negative consequences for us. The topics you posted are rather old - Iranians may have more power to screw us over now.

Just in general. All of this has been discussed over and over. And I don't think the situation has changed fundamentally at all over the last couple of years. Iran is just inching closer to the worst case scenario because decisive action still has not been taken. Iran definitely isn't getting stronger politically or anything if that's what you are implying. It's just becoming more dangerous.

Mostly, I was trying to show that I was presenting the O'ist viewpoint of the matter in my own words, while most of those responding were viewing different viewpoints. So I wanted to show that this wasn't just my own radical opinion, but also the opinion of Objectivist intellectuals and other forum members.

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I don't see why we should fear the threat of nuclear weaponry from rogue states: history and common sense has shown us that they will not use them, because it would most certainly mean the end of their own regime, owing to the superior military of NATO countries. Power is what these enemies crave the most, not annihilation of other populations.

Of course you could also say that it would be good to act now to remove these regimes before they actually develop a 'nuclear shield' and ensure their long term sovereign security, but you have to balance that against the costs (inspiring/provoking far more terrorist action that we have experienced so far). As we have seen with Libya, it is possible to dislodge a dictatorship by supporting a civil revolution when it comes. Without that revolution to provide the impetus, you're just getting into another Iraq/Vietnam and risking your own soldiers and breeding the contempt of the rest of the world.

Also this argument that the blood of civilian deaths is always on the aggressor's (or dictator's) hands does not hold water. If civilians are killed inadvertently during operations against military targets, then that is acceptable in 'total war' terms. That doesn't give you a carte blanche to brutalise the native population until the regime crumbles away.

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Tyco read post #81 to understand the correct context or the entire articles I linked to if you still think this is about "brutalizing" a group or that Iran is a civilized nation and not an Islamic Totalitarian state ran by the insane.

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I don't see why we should fear the threat of nuclear weaponry from rogue states: history and common sense has shown us that they will not use them, because it would most certainly mean the end of their own regime, owing to the superior military of NATO countries. Power is what these enemies crave the most, not annihilation of other populations.

Iranian Quds force (special forces) are very active but they know just how much they can get away with. It turns out they can get away with alot.. including the recent plot to assasinate a Saudi ambassador on US soil, and pushing weapons and training to insurgents in Iraq and Afghanistan. There is some indication we even went head-to-head with them during the initial invasion of Iraq in 2003. The mullahs arn't stupid though, and even though they worship death, they wouldn't use nukes directly. As you note: it would mean the end of their regime.

The real threat, as I said, is if they hand a nuclear weapon over to one of their many proxies. Iran is the largest state sponsor of terrorism. Hezbollah is essentially a huge shadow army that is armed, funded, and trained by Iran. The Mahdi Army is powerful militia and voting bloc in Iraq that takes it's orders from Iran. The Haqqani network in Afghanistan isn't Iranian controlled, but they get weapons from Iran.

Iran has used it's proxies to attack both Israel and America before and has gotten away with it without much more than a slap on the wrist. If Iran got the bomb it could hand it over to the Mahdi Army to destroy whatever remains of US forces in Iraq and Kuwait. It could hand it over to the Haqqani network to destroy a major US target in Afghanistan. It could hand it over to Hezbollah to nuke Tel-Aviv. Hezbollah would probably also be the best canidate to smuggle the bomb into the US and take out a major US city, since they are the best organized and already make alot of money off the drug trade in South America.

Your analogy to history fails because Iran is in a historically unique position to deliver a nuclear strike with plausible deniability (through proxies) and therefore without risk of retaliation.

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Your analogy to history fails because Iran is in a historically unique position to deliver a nuclear strike with plausible deniability (through proxies) and therefore without risk of retaliation.

Iraq was invaded and are occupied to prevent an attack by WMD even thou . If I were standing in Iranian shoes I'd say the Americans wouldn't care about them denying the obvious - and therefore see the Russian sponsored program as deterrent.

Russians worship power and status not death.

I don't see why we should fear the threat of nuclear weaponry from rogue states: history and common sense has shown us that they will not use them, because it would most certainly mean the end of their own regime, owing to the superior military of NATO countries. Power is what these enemies crave the most, not annihilation of other populations.

Of course you could also say that it would be good to act now to remove these regimes before they actually develop a 'nuclear shield' and ensure their long term sovereign security, but you have to balance that against the costs (inspiring/provoking far more terrorist action that we have experienced so far). As we have seen with Libya, it is possible to dislodge a dictatorship by supporting a civil revolution when it comes. Without that revolution to provide the impetus, you're just getting into another Iraq/Vietnam and risking your own soldiers and breeding the contempt of the rest of the world.

Also this argument that the blood of civilian deaths is always on the aggressor's (or dictator's) hands does not hold water. If civilians are killed inadvertently during operations against military targets, then that is acceptable in 'total war' terms. That doesn't give you a carte blanche to brutalise the native population until the regime crumbles away.

Thanks for expressing something very close to my viewpoint in a more fluent and concise way!

Just in general. All of this has been discussed over and over. And I don't think the situation has changed fundamentally at all over the last couple of years. Iran is just inching closer to the worst case scenario because decisive action still has not been taken. Iran definitely isn't getting stronger politically or anything if that's what you are implying. It's just becoming more dangerous.

Mostly, I was trying to show that I was presenting the O'ist viewpoint of the matter in my own words, while most of those responding were viewing different viewpoints. So I wanted to show that this wasn't just my own radical opinion, but also the opinion of Objectivist intellectuals and other forum members.

I at least (and believe everybody since you linked) recognized what you were doing, and was trying to go a step further. Libya is a good example of how thing have indeed changed the last couple of years.

As for the blood of innocents, http://forum.objecti...ndpost&p=283978

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The current situation in Iran is very unfortunate considering the potential the nation has. It's actually one of the most developed middle eastern nations and once militant Islam loses its grip, will be a great ally and investment. As for Iran's supposed involvement in other conflicts, I frankly do not trust any US/NATO intel on this matter after the Iraq WMD debacle. It's also important not to get carried away and make the same mistakes leftists/anti-americans make when they view the slightest CIA involvement with a foreign nation as evidence that American imperialists overthrew a government and installed a puppet dictatorship or whatever.

The plausible deniability idea doesn't hold water either. There are too few sources of nuclear weaponry in the world for someone to pass one on and expect it to remain a dirty little secret.

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Tyco, your stance towards Iran strikes me as extremely niave. This is a nation with a charter to expand Islam through violence. To quote the Iranian consitition, the Iranian military will "be responsible not only for guarding and preserving the frontiers of the country, but also for fulfilling the ideological mission of jihad in God's way; that is, extending the sovereignty of God's law throughout the world." Discounting US/NATO intel is fine (if you want to accept the intel community blame for the "Iraq WMD debacle" hook, line, and sinker), but accepting jihadist propaganda as your substitute for intel is something entirely different.

As for "supposed" involvement in other conflicts, there is nothing supposed about it. That Iranians help kill American soldiers IS A FACT. We were capturing Iranian stamped AK-47s and other weapons with 2007 manufacturing markings in January of 2007. This is a matter of public record and unless the Mahdi Army is good at stealing from Iranian arms factories it means that Iran was shipping them in by the ton.

With respect to the possibility of Iran passing a nuke to one of it's terrorist proxies, my assertion is only that it is possible, and that such a possiblity is unacceptable. Plausible deniability holds water because to get attacked by the US, an enemy can't do anything short of sending it's military to the white house to shoot into oval office. Despite our reputation as cowboys, our foreign policy record is entirely the opposite: the US consistently turns the other cheek. Our leadership is also so concrete bound that connecting the dots from one terrorist group to the country that funds, trains, and arms them has proven to be outside their cognitive capacity. The non-wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have done nothing but further discourage military responses to acts of war.

This makes handing over a nuke to some terrorist group for an attack on the "Paper Tiger" an entirely plausible risk for a country whose leaders worship death anyway. If, inshallah, they get away with raining thermonuclear hell on their enemy without reprisal, they win. If Allah wills that they also get destroyed in the process, then they get eternal bliss with 72 virgins, and as far as they are concerned they still win. There is no way to predict if this is definitely what will happen if they get the bomb, but how can you be at all ok with this preventable scenario?

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If nukes wern't so taboo a good argument could be made tactically for their use in this situation, since open source info on the Anrak and Natanz facilities is that they are buried so deep that "none of our bunker busting bombs can reach them". Of course when the press reports that these facilities are untouchable they are ignoring the existence of our most powerful weapons.

Realistically, I'm hoping that covert action (killing Iranian nuclear scientists, sabatoging the facilities, etc.) is able to continue to slow nuclear weapons development in Iran. I don't think this will work for very long, however.

Nukes are taboo for good reasons; they should be an absolute last resort in any situation. Other reasonable options have already been mentioned, but I recently heard an argument about using computer viruses to target nuclear reactors. [source] I don't know all the details about how nukes are developed, but I am 100% sure that computers are a key component to the entire operation. Creating computer viruses to disrupt progress inside Iran's nuclear labs should definitely be pursued.. long before any scientists are murdered.

"Ralph Langner, the researcher who identified that Stuxnet infected PLCs, first speculated publicly in September 2010 that the malware was of Israeli origin, and that it targeted Iranian nuclear facilities. However Langner more recently, in a TED Talk recorded in February 2011, stated that, "My opinion is that the Mossad is involved but that the leading force is not Israel. The leading force behind Stuxnet is the cyber superpower—there is only one; and that's the United States." Kevin Hogan, Senior Director of Security Response at Symantec, reported that the majority of infected systems were in Iran (about 60%), which has led to speculation that it may have been deliberately targeting "high-value infrastructure" in Iran including either the Bushehr Nuclear Power Plant or the Natanz nuclear facility." [source]

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