Tuesday, February 21, 2012

An attack on Iran would be an act of criminal stupidity

US and Israeli leaders are talking themselves into a disastrous conflict that will make Iranian nuclear weapons a certainty

Seumas Milne
guardian.co.uk, Tuesday 21 February 2012

"After a decade of calamitous western wars in the wider Middle East, the signs are becoming ever more ominous that we're heading for another. And, hard as it is to credit, the same discredited arguments used to justify the disasters of Iraq and Afghanistan – from weapons of mass destruction to sponsorship of terrorism and fundamentalist fanatics – are now being used to make the case for an attack on Iran.

War talk about Iran and its nuclear programme has been going on for so long it might be tempting to dismiss it as bluster. The mixed messages about Iran coming from the US and Israeli governments in recent weeks have become increasingly contradictory and bewildering. Maybe it's all a game of bluff and psychological warfare. Perhaps Iran's offer of new talks or this week's atomic energy inspectors' visit might lead to a breakthrough.

But the mood music has become more menacing. US defence secretary Leon Panetta has let it be known there is a "strong likelihood" Israel will attack Iran between April and June, even as Barack Obama says no Israeli decision has yet been taken. US officials told the Guardian last week they believed the administration would be left with "no alternative" but to attack Iran or watch Israel do so later this year......"

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