Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Ahmadinejad Again Talks Trash

Undeterred by Iran's growing isolation even in the Arab world, and seemingly unfazed by Israel's March deadline for military action, Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad reiterated yesterday his contention that the Holocaust never happened. (Times Online: Holocaust a myth, says Iran president).

Ahmadinejad continued his two month stretch of bringing tensions in that region to the brink of war between Iran and Israel. His latest outbursts decrying the veracity of the Holocaust were issued as part of his latest calls to move Israel to Europe. The Iranian hard-liner, reputed to be one of the kidnappers in the US hostage crisis in 1979, said last week, "You [Europeans] have to pay the compensation yourself. This is our proposal: give a part of your own land in Europe, the United States, Canada or Alaska to them [Jews], so that the Jews can establish their country."

Reports surfaced when Ahmadinejad was first elected that he was one of the leaders of the group that took Americans hostage during the Islamic revolution in Iran back in 1979. Photographs showed a youthful Ahmadinejad holding a gun to the head of a blindfolded hostage. Iran officially denied the reports, however Ahmadinejad's public statements recently are certainly consistent with those of the hostage taker.

His latest delusional statements regarding the Holocaust contend that it was a myth created by the US and Europe to justify creating a Jewish state in the midst of the Islamic world. It is only the latest in a series of verbal attacks aimed at Israel and the west; a dangerous game of brinkmanship being played with US troops on his border and an Israel growing increasingly nervous about Iranian nuclear developments.

Ahmadinejad is playing a very dangerous game and is using Israel as a pawn. It is unlikely that he truly wants war with Israel - a war he cannot win, given US support for Israel right next door. What he does want, however, is a united Arab world behind him as Iran continues to battle the west over nuclear proliferation. For the moment, the world is fairly united in their opposition to Iran's potential development of nuclear fuel technologies. The game Ahmadinejad is playing is designed to drive an Israeli wedge between the western world and the rest of the Arab states.

It's not a ploy unique to Iran, by any means. When the US and coalition forces attacked Iraq in the first Gulf War, Hussein's response was not to retaliate against any of the coalition nations. Rather, he sought to fracture the coalition by launching scud missile attacks against Israel. Had Israel responded, the Arab nations in the coalition would have withdrawn, and some may even have joined the war on Iraq's side.

Ahmadinejad's verbal scud attacks against Israel have the same goal. What he is gambling on now is that the US will once again restrain Israel from attacking an Arab nation. What is more likely, however, is that the US will beat Israel to the punch. The US has neither the leverage nor the incentive to restrain Israel this time around - Israel doesn't need US IFF codes to attack Iran like they needed for any retaliation against Iraq - but the US does have plenty of incentive to settle and old score with Ahmadinejad. As of this writing, I would not recommend underwriting any insurance policies for Ahmadinejad. The man is undoubtedly on borrowed time.



Alan Fraser said...

Today's response from the lunatic fringe: This guy is talking the same kind of Hitlerian rhetoric that can mobilize people to madness. Pacifists prior to WWII came up with the idea of a 'moderated pacifism' in which the threat of war was less than the moral damage from fighting it. This appears to be one of those cases.

Alan Fraser said...

Whoops...didn't state that clearly but that's why we're the lunatic fringe. Peas in our thyme is not appropriate for Iran.