Tuesday, April 22, 2008


So, lemme get this straight:
If country A--which is not an actual democracy, and in which the armed forces are controlled by a leader who is not democratically elected--attacks country B--which, though a democracy and an ally of our is, let's face it, not a very good ally--then Hillary would "obliterate" country A.


We wipe out a bunch of innocent people who had no control over the attack, nor over the person who initiated it.

That is pretty much insane.

The thing to do in a situation like that is to target the government, not the populace. There is absolutely no way to do this without killing many innocent people--but that still means far fewer than if we "obliterate" the country.

So now, with the addition of a bit of mindlessly violent chest-thumping, Shrillery's transformation into a Republican is almost complete. Her campaign already seems like something Rove would put together.

Fer Chrissake.

You know, one of the biggest vices of American conservatives is that they are virtually incapable of admitting error. Any even vaguely objective survey of the history of American-Iranian relations shows that Iranians have plenty of reasons to be righteously angry at the U.S.. American conservatives, however (and as usual) pretend like we are perfect and they are just crazy and evil. Now, I'm far from being an apologist for Iran, but there's simply no way to understand what's going on if you've got this kind of delusional view of history.

Cripes. Looks like it's time for another camping trip for me...


Blogger Tom Van Dyke said...

Hillary didn't exactly say she would "obliterate" Iran, although she said she would attack it if it launched a nuclear assault on Israel.

You could look it up.

2:09 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

'ABC News' Chris Cuomo asked Clinton what she would do if Iran attacked Israel with nuclear weapons.

"I want the Iranians to know that if I'm the president, we will attack Iran," Clinton said. "In the next 10 years, during which they might foolishly consider launching an attack on Israel, we would be able to totally obliterate them."'

Source: ABC News.

Good post Winst. I was genuinely shocked by her words. She's trying to use readiness to commit mass murder as a selling point. Mind you, it tells you a lot about her intended audience (AIPAC et al) as well.

5:46 AM  
Blogger Tom Van Dyke said...

Exactly. She didn't say she'd obliterate them, just attack them. I heard the quote.

3:21 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Right, Tom; and when she said "We would be able to totally obliterate them," she was just giving a by-the-by assessment of capabilities, and didn't intend to signal to anyone that total obliteration might be actually on the cards, or anything like that.

5:15 PM  
Blogger Tom Van Dyke said...

Signal? Mebbe. Remind them we could, certainly.

To be squishy about it creates a greater danger of an actual attack by Iran on Israel. That's the real world, sir. A velvet fist in a velvet glove deters no one.

6:52 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Somehow I think Iran harbors no illusions about the tangible reaction to an attack on Israel. That message was sent to Saddam by Israel itself, prior to any actual assault on Israel.

The very definition of *political posturing* on both sides (Iran & US), IMHO.

8:48 PM  
Blogger Tom Van Dyke said...

I sorta agree with the last sentence, anon. Like Hillary in this case, Ahmadinejad [who is not the ruler of Iran anyway] must be read/listened to carefully, not carelessly.

He has never actually threatened Israel directly. If you listen closely, he says it will be wiped off the map, not that Iran will do it.

As for your first part---if I'm reading you closely enough---I think you're referring to Israel's air raid on Saddam's budding nuclear program in 1981.

Two problems here: first, Iran's nuclear program is sufficiently decentralized that Israel couldn't take it out if they wanted to.

Second, Israel bombed the bejesus out of something in Syria in September 2007.


Nuclear? It's never been definitively established. But the Syrians raised barely a peep of protest, nor Iran, and Israel and the US kept pretty mum about the whole thing.

I fear, Mr. Doyle and WS, that you deny that there are serious and deadly forces at work. I thought Hillary did good, and made it clear what her presidency would look like.

I have no idea what Senator Obama would do in such a grave situation, nor has he given any real indication. If his sensibilities are like Jimmy Doyle's and WS', I think he'll make the world a more dangerous place.

10:26 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Actually, I meant more in terms of generally expecting severe reprisal for an attack.

I think it's fair to extrapolate from the destruction of a putative nuclear installation to the more severe consequences of an actual attack on Israel.

2:23 PM  
Blogger Tom Van Dyke said...

My understanding is that Israel's nuclear force isn't sufficient to "obliterate" a large country like Iran. Neither do I think the US has ever guaranteed Israel's security as HRC just did [nor was it ever necessary before a nuclear Iran started looming].

Would President Obama do the same? Perhaps, but if he did in in this campaign, he would deeply upset supporters like WS and Mr. Doyle, surely.

4:23 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Tom, you have no idea who I support, if anyone.

But let me ask you this: you think (if I've understood you right) that threatening to massacre millions of innocent civilians is not only permissible but actually required of anyone who expects to be taken seriously in the "real world" as a candidate for president. But what about actually doing it? Do you think that the US president should be prepared to actually go ahead and carry out this sort of threat, or do you only approve of it as a bluff? Just curious.

7:58 PM  
Blogger Tom Van Dyke said...

I don't know what goes through a man's [or woman's] mind when it comes time to push the button.

I certainly do approve of it as a bluff, and find it naive and irresponsible for a president to leave no doubt that he/she wouldn't do it.

Therefore, I strenuously object to questioning the propiety of HRC's statement.

The Hiroshima equation is unspeakably complex; perhaps the best or only justification is that it resulted in a net saving of innocent life. Perhaps that threshhold could not be met in the Iran-Israel scenario.

And on the other hand, I have a certain sympathy for Ward Churchill's "little Eichmanns" argument, that none of us are truly innocent.

So I'm not completely sanguine with the characterization of retaliation as "mass murder" either.

8:55 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Israel's actual nuclear capabilities are strategically ambiguous. However, I don't think anyone doubts that they're sufficient to vaporize Tehran and a few other cities. Adequate for game theory deterrence.

I'm somewhat agnostic on the net effect of rattling the nuclear saber. The US and USSR each had sufficient arsenals to effectively wipe each other out for decades and somehow it never seemed necessary, aside from some marginal figures on each side, to actually propose nuclear strikes as a stated strategy.

I guess I just don't really see the point, aside from for domestic consumption.

9:27 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ha ha! Thanks for the clarification, Tom. What happened tot he man of steel, the only commenter to face up to global realities? "The Hiroshima equation is unspeakably complex"; maybe Ward Churchill had a point; there's really no such thing as murder (Kids? What about kids, Tom -- aren't they innocent in the relevant sense?); blah blah; mumble mumble. You've made my day, you ignorant, posturing imbecile.

2:10 AM  
Blogger Tom Van Dyke said...

You have read me carelessly over the years, then, Mr. Doyle, as I'm no man of steel nor easily fit into the box you've prepared for me.

In that light, being called an imbecile by you gives me no great pain and a small bit of pleasure. Thanks for playing.

1:27 PM  

Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home