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Posts Tagged ‘nuclear weapons’

Econ 101 and Iran

Posted by Richard on March 22, 2007

The Watcher of Weasels chose Big Lizards to fill the last vacancy on the Watcher's Council, and it looks like a fine choice. Check out, for example, The Contranomics of Global Jihad, nominated by the Council as one of this week's most link-worthy pieces of writing. Dafydd's excellent post argues that Iran is in the process of being defeated in the same way that the Soviet Union was defeated — by economics, not military force (emphasis in original):

Force projection is dreadfully expensive, even if you call it global jihadism: Iran is supporting Hezbollah in Syria and Lebanon, the Qods Force in Iraq, a war against Israel a few months ago, assassins all over the world, and Shiite revolutionary movements from Malaysia to Venezuela. But at the same time, the drain on their resources from trying to develop a nuclear "Qods bomb" and buy a delivery system from North Korea, Russia, or Red China has caused Iran to stop investing in its oil infrastructure.

Totalitarian, anti-capitalist societies, Dafydd points out, simply can't afford the technological development and force projection that Iran is trying to pursue. Only free, open societies that grasp Econ 101 can do that.

Read the whole thing. And browse some of his other stuff, too — it's a good blog, once you get past the blinding banner!

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Ahmadinejad’s ultimatum

Posted by Richard on December 5, 2006

Kenneth Timmerman took a look at the Iranian president’s recent letter to the American people, and he didn’t like what he saw:

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has followed up his 18-page letter to President Bush earlier this year with a five-page missive to the American people.

In the earlier letter, which left the Bush White House shaking their heads with wonderment, the Iranian invited Mr. Bush to embrace Islam. That is a well-established Islamic tradition when dealing with an enemy just prior to war. If they refuse, then the Muslims are "justified" in destroying them.

Timmerman noted that Ahmadinejad’s letter to the American people referred to America’s "injustice" a dozen times, and the concept of justice has a rather different meaning for Ahmadinejad than it does for those of us in the West. To him, it’s all about submitting to Allah — the "Islamization of the entire world." He demanded that we stop supporting Israel, leave Iraq, and quit embracing "moral corruption." Timmerman pointed out that "corruption" is a rather serious crime in Iran:

Students of recent Iranian history will recall that the "crime" most often used to justify a death sentence by Islamic Republic revolutionary courts during the early years of the revolution was "corruption on Earth." This was how the regime simply eliminated its opponents or those who rejected absolute clerical rule.

Timmerman thinks most commentors have missed the point of the letter, which came at the end:

Citing from the Koran at the close of his letter, he says that if Americans "repent" of their "injustice," they will be blessed with many gifts. "We should all heed the divine Word of the Holy Koran," he says.

The context of this particular verse (28:67-28, Sura "Al-Qasas," or The Narration), is very clear. It follows a graphic description of destruction and devastation that will befall those who fail to repent of their injustice, i.e., support for Israel and refusal to adopt Islam.

It also sets out the terms of the traditional Muslim warning to the enemies of Allah. "And never will your Lord destroy the towns until He sends to their mother town a Messenger reciting to them Our Verses." This is precisely what Mr. Ahmadinejad does in his letter.

Dump George W. Bush, allow the Muslims to destroy Israel, and adopt Islam — or else you will be destroyed. This is Mr. Ahmadinejad’s message.

Meanwhile, the gas centrifuges are humming in the underground bunkers at Natanz (the ones off-limits to inspectors), construction continues at the secret Neyshabour facility (deeper underground and less vulnerable to air strikes), and the supply of weapons-grade uranium slowly but surely grows.

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Reports of my death exaggerated

Posted by Richard on October 14, 2006

Hi, there! Miss me? Sorry about the long absence (I can’t believe it’s been almost two weeks). I’ve been working toward a big deadline, and although I wasn’t really working killer hours (I don’t do that anymore — for one thing, my back won’t let me), I consistently found myself too mentally tired — or distracted — or lazy — or something — to sit down and blog. I finished up a couple of days ago, and have pretty much avoided the computer since.

I haven’t even been reading much or keeping up with world events during the last couple of weeks. I’ve been tossing most my newspapers in the recycle bin unread, and I’ve only glanced at a few blogs from time to time. Oh, I caught the news highlights, but I missed a lot of the details and follow-up stories.

For instance, I remember some Democrats suggesting that a gay man shouldn’t be permitted anywhere near a bunch of teenage boys. But somehow I missed the coverage of gay rights demonstrators demanding that those homophobes apologize. And did the Boy Scouts of America ever issue a statement of support for the Democrats’ position?

I heard a brief mention of Sen. Harry Reid’s illegal real estate dealings, but I never did hear details of the investigation that I’m sure was launched by the non-partisan Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW). And I missed the stories about legislators calling on Reid to resign.

And then there was that North Korean nuclear test. I heard how Japan immediately imposed a strict trade embargo. Surely, France denounced Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s unilateralism and failure to work with the international community, right? And John Kerry must have held a press conference to declare that if he were the Japanese P.M., he’d have deferred to the United Nations.

It’s really a shame that I missed such important stories. Why, by only hearing part of the news like that, I could easily get the impression that fairness, balance, and impartiality are sorely lacking nowadays.

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Albright: wrong then, wrong now

Posted by Richard on June 23, 2006

Remember when American politicians of all persuasions refrained from publicly criticizing their country while abroad? Nowadays, lobbing rhetorical bombs at the U.S. from foreign soil seems to be a Democratic hobby. The other day in Moscow, former Secretary of State Madeline Albright blamed the U.S. invasion of Iraq for Iran’s and North Korea’s eagerness to pursue nuclear weapons.

What nonsense. Iran is pursuing nuclear weapons so it can annihilate Israel, bring back the 12th Imam, and create a global caliphate — the triumph of Islam and extension of the ummah throughout the world. I don’t think U.S. withdrawal from Iraq would make Ahmadinejad and the mullahs lose interest in those goals.

As for North Korea, Ms. Albright and her boss, Bill Clinton, bear much of the blame for that country’s nuclear weapons and long-range missile programs.

In 2000, Secretary of State Albright visited North Korea and gushed about what a wonderful host Kim Jong-il was. I believe her visit came near one of the periodic peaks of the horrific famine that’s been going on for more than a decade and that’s claimed millions of lives.

While Ms. Albright strove to "normalize" relations with — and praised the lavish banquets and parties of — this monstrous ruler of a ghastly slave state, she was apparently oblivious — or indifferent — to the abject horror by which she was surrounded: People driven mad by hunger, trying to survive by eating roaches, tree bark, undigested bits picked out of animal and human feces, and grass soup. People digging up the recently buried and consuming the decaying flesh. People exchanging babies with their neighbors so that it wasn’t their own flesh and blood that they killed and ate.

But, hey, that Kim threw a great party! And the Clinton administration wanted to demonstrate its respect for the concerns and aspirations of Kim’s glorious people’s republic.

I’m not much interested in the foreign policy advice — or moral judgments — of Madeleine Albright.

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