As you know, I've been following the war of nerves and words between Washington, Tel Aviv, and Tehran over Iran's nuclear program. Well, I found this article assessing Iran's nuclear program, courtesy of Iranian media in fact, reporting something that did not make big news in the Amerikan media:
Well, we've been treated to all sorts of allegations regarding the Iranian regime, from plots against the Saudi ambassador, to warnings of Zbgnw Brzznsk that Israel might want to think twice before acting against Iran unilaterally, to plots of Iranian intelligence involving used car a salesman, and so on. Then there were the apparent rifts between President Obama and Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu. We may add to this the possibility that the decent assassinations of Iranian scientists may have been conducted by some western intelligence service or services (and there is even the idea floating around out there that the Iranians themselves have conducted these operations).
In to this mix we may now add Joint Chiefs chairman General Martin Dempsey.
"Speaking in a nationally televised interview with the CNN’s 'Fareed Zakaria GPS' show on Sunday, Chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff General Martin Dempsey said, 'We are of the opinion that Iran is a rational actor.'
"Dempsey pointed out that US officials aren't convinced Iran has decided to build atomic armaments.
“'We also know, or we believe we know that Iran has not decided to make a nuclear weapon,' General Dempsey said.
"Elsewhere in his remarks, the top US general also described any Israeli attack on Iran as 'destabilizing.'
“'It’s not prudent at this point to decide to attack Iran,' General Dempsey said, adding that the US government is confident the Israelis 'understand our concerns.'
Indeed, one has to agree with the general, for as I have attempted to point out here in several blogs, assume Iran did acquire a nuclear weapons capability. To use it would make that nation a pariah and an outcast, and call forth an overwhelming retaliation from Israel (and probably us as well). While it makes sense that Iran would want such a capability, its only value for that country would be in deterrence, not use.
But it is indeed questionable whether Iran has even that intention, and General Dempsey has confirmed it. But why now?
There are any number of ways to analyze why he would say such a thing. (1) it is part of the ongoing war of nerves, and a deliberate attempt to obfuscate our real intentions and keep the ayatollahs guessing, (2) it is not part of that ongoing war of nerves, but a real voice of dissent within the US' "deep political structure" (to borrow the conception of Peter Dale Scott), or (3) it is possibly yet another warning to Israel itself.
Whatever we make of General Dempsey's remarks, one thing is clear: the pressure against Iran will continue, but there are those within the power structure of the US that have serious political and military reservations about taking any action.
See you on the flip side.