Wednesday, April 12, 2006



Still no military solution

Two years ago, the Atlantic Monthly ran a "war game" to explore America's options in dealing with Iran. The depressing conclusion was that there was no military solution to Iran's nuclear ambitions. The idea that the US could use pre-emptive airstrikes to destroy Iran's nuclear programme was nothing but a fantasy - and a dangerous one at that, whose best outcome would be simply to delay acquisition of nuclear weapons, while dramatically increasing Iran's incentive to use them. Now, with the Bush Administration sabre-rattling and threatening to bomb (with nukes, even), Atlantic correspondent James Fallows has revisisted the scenario. And what he finds is even less encouraging:

That was the situation nearly two years ago. Everything that has changed since then increases the pressure on the United States to choose the “military option” of a pre-emptive strike—and makes that option more ruinously self-defeating.

[...]

The biggest change has been in what Soviet strategists used to call the “correlation of forces.” Every tool at Iran’s disposal is now more powerful, and every complication for the United States worse, than when our war-gamers determined that a pre-emptive strike could not succeed. Iran has used the passing time to disperse, diversify, conceal, and protect its nuclear centers. Instead of a dozen or so potential sites that would have to be destroyed, it now has at least twice that many. The Shiite dominance of Iraq’s new government and military has consolidated, and the ties between the Shiites of Iran and those of Iraq have grown more intense. Early this year, the Iraqi Shiite warlord Muqtada al-Sadr suggested that he would turn his Mahdi Army against Americans if they attacked Iran.

(Emphasis added)

And that's without even looking at their ability to remove their oil production from the market at a time of shortage and send oil prices through the roof. Bombing had a low chance of success and a high vulnerability to retaliation last year, and now those chances are even lower and that vulnerability even greater.

Unfortunately, Bush doesn't seem to understand this - and his constant threats of bombing are making things worse, not better:

By giving public warnings, the United States and Israel “create ‘excess demand’ for military action,” as our war-game leader Sam Gardiner recently put it, and constrain their own negotiating choices.

Or in English, by publicly threatening to bomb, there is a risk they will back themselves into a corner where they are forced to bomb simply to avoid looking "weak". This is the same sort of gross stupidity which led to World War One, and the results will be disastrous for us all.

Military action should not be an option in Iran. It will not work, and will only make things worse. The only way this problem will be solved is by negotiation, not bombing.

32 comments:

What does that say about Iran threatening to 'nuke' Israel.

Posted by Anonymous : 4/12/2006 04:52:00 PM

I think Israel has more than enough nuclear weapons to deter that eventuality.

Posted by Idiot/Savant : 4/12/2006 05:01:00 PM

It would seem there is no negotaited solution either there is jsut the inevitability of Iran having a nuclear arsenal.

Still I guess the odds are probably better than 50% that they won't use it in the near future or give the technology to anyone other than other states.

Posted by Genius : 4/12/2006 08:13:00 PM

Idiot, where have you been for the past few years? The US - along with Europe, Russia and China - has actually been invloved in the negotiations that you advocate. You might not have noticed but Iran has pissed off the Europeans by not negotiating in good faith and have refused the Russian offer of uranium enrichment. You just don't seem to understand that the present Iranian regime is not interested in negotiations or compromise.

It really is bizzare that the Left - the ones who should be the most opposed to a theocracy getting the bomb - are more interested in attacking the US.

Posted by Anonymous : 4/12/2006 09:14:00 PM

The Christian theocracy already has thousands of nukes..

Posted by Anonymous : 4/12/2006 09:29:00 PM

So, judging by your 'point' about "the Christian theocracy", already having nukes, Huskymoonbat, I take it you think we should tear up the NPT and just let anybody have them so it's all nice and 'fair'.

As for Neil Morrison's point - indeed. Welcome to the 'Pravdaesque' rewriting of history for the convenience of the left-wing armchair moralist.

Posted by Anonymous : 4/13/2006 01:36:00 AM

Actually, Huskymoonbat - why we're here, can you tell me why the US is a 'theocracy'? Is it because its President believes in God? Does that mean NZ was a 'theocracy' under James Brendon Bolger??

Posted by Anonymous : 4/13/2006 01:40:00 AM

Neil: and you just don't seem to understand the blunt fact that bombing will not work, and can only make things worse. And this is in the opinion of some of the top national security experts in the US (and, judging from the Hersh article, the USAF; nuclear weapons only came up because they were seen as dramatically improving the chances of success).

Supporting military action doesn't just mean supporting killing people - it means supporting killing people for no reason whatsoever. You may find such pointless slaughter an attractive option. I don't.

Posted by Idiot/Savant : 4/13/2006 02:01:00 AM

One would think that preventing one of the most dispicable regimes in the world from acquiring the most lethal military technology ever invented might be described as something other than 'killing for no reason whatsoever'. I remain quite happy that Israel bombed Saddam's nuclear facilities - killing people - and given the laughable and corrupt toothlessness of the UN, the threat of American military action seems the only thing likely to bring Iran closer to compromise. Wha else would? The threat of a slap on the wrist from the EU or UN?? Don't make me laugh. Libya would be further along its own path towards nukes if it wasn't for America. And nobody died.

Given that you don't favour military action, Idiot, what else might you suggest. You seem to make a living here blustering away about things whilst being spared the tedium of actually advancing any alternate ideas. Must be tough.

would you:
1. Do nothing - in which case we chould brace for mny more nuclear states in the next 20 years.

2. Folow 'diplomatic measures' - which would include sanctions of the like imposed on Iraq, one would imagine. If you chose 2, what exactly would this entail?

And by the way, many military planner seem to think there's a very high chance of successfully knocking out Iran's nuke facilities. Don't parade yet more misinformation here by suggesting there's anywhere near a negative consensus here.

Posted by Anonymous : 4/13/2006 05:22:00 AM

adrien - i would suspect that your arm chair is just as comfortable as any "left wing moralist". And seeing as you seem so keen on a millitary response, are you going to get up and make a stand?

And as far as the NPT goes, no Iran shouldnt head down the road of developing nukes, but then that should apply to everyone, inlcuding the US, who has been adding more weapons to its nuclear arsenal.

I also think that this runs deeper than just the military issue. There is plenty of evidence out there that this is seen by some as a war of faiths and cultures (and both sides need to pull their heads in). There is also the less mentioned aspect of econimic dominance.

Posted by Anonymous : 4/13/2006 09:19:00 AM

This mess should have been entirely predictable. The day the Bushites decided they "created their own reality" in international law and decided the United States could demand the unfettered right to unilateral action where and when it saw fit was the name a new nuclear arms race became inevitable.

The United States under Bush wanted thew law of the jungle. And now its whinging because there is another player who wants the bomb.

The chickens are coming home to roost on the Potomac.

There is no decent way out, unless by some miracle a diplomatic solution can be found. Either the Americans/Israelis (same thing really) make war on Iran or the mad Mullahs get the bomb.

Welcome to the reality the neo-cons have created - a return to the 1930's, only with nuclear weapons.

Posted by Sanctuary : 4/13/2006 11:54:00 AM

Yeah right - so having a nutcase Iranian go on about 'wiping Israel off the map' is a response to America...

The only group showing disregard for international law here is the Iranian government.

Posted by Anonymous : 4/13/2006 12:04:00 PM

It seems that Idiot's placed his head further into the sand, rather than give an account of what he'd do to 'defuse ths crisis' - other than blame America. Shame. I'm also waiting expectantly to hear about why the US is 'xenophobic', despite having one of the openest, most multicultural societies in the world.

Lots of vitriol, Idiot, not a lot of spine.

Posted by Anonymous : 4/13/2006 12:08:00 PM

Hello Adrien,
There's a device called humour. It's sometimes more fun than ranting and namecalling. You may wish to google the term.

Posted by Anonymous : 4/13/2006 12:13:00 PM

Adrien,
Since you've uncharacteristically failed to respond to my previous comments on the topic, here they are again:

"If I were president of Israel, with the 4th largest army on the planet at my diposal, 200+ nuclear weapons of my own, an active chemical and biological warfare program, and military sponsorship to the tune of billions from the world's dominant country, then I'd consider the likelihood of Iran choosing to use it's nuclear weapon on me to be negligible. Unless I happened to be paranoid, which I'm not, or a politician for whom it was politically expedient to fake hyperventilation before the media.

What you are describing is presumably how every arab nation feels about Israel's possession of nuclear weapons, despite it also possessing a vast overwhelming conventional military superiority to it's neighbours, rendering them unnecessary.
And unless I've missed something, the Iranian poseur hasn't declared he will wipe Israel off the map, he's declared that it should be wiped off the map. A vile statement in itself, but in no way a declaration of intent.

Willfully confusing words with actions is how this nonsense escalates. Comparing and contrasting Iran and the US, one of the two has been involved in dozens of wars over the past recent decades, killing millions of people and has invaded multiple countries. One has military bases girdling the entire planet, an incredibly vast collection of nuclear weapons, and a stated desire to develop tactical nuclear weapons that can be used on a conventional battlefield (it's rather difficult to pretend you're on the high moral ground on the NPT when you've withdrawn from it to develop new generations of nukes yourself). The other has been involved in one external war, to defend itself when it was invaded by it's neighbour, a war which was encouraged and sponsored by the other country in question above (I might've added that the US, amongst other countries, also supplied the chemical agent precursors to the invading country and turned the other cheek when they were used).
It takes a certain wilful blindness to cast Iran as the number one dangerous baddie in that comparison.

Though I'm no bible-basher, the proverb about removing the beam from one's own eye before pointing out the mote in the other's does seem rather apt."

A more intemperate wording might've been - when are the State Dept going to give up their freakin' God complex and the casting of interventions motivated purely by self-interest as moral crusades? (and the rest of the security council are absolutely no better than the US in this. The French and Russians are purely self-intersted in opposing US intervention in Iran). And when are the media going to stop framing and trumpeting the gobshite anyway?
Large parts of the left are not absolutely anti-war and do see a place for legitimate national self-defense.
What the left refuse to accept is being emotionally manipulated into the morally indefensible position of invading sovereign nations purely at the say-so of what has been repeatedly proved to be non-existent 'intelligence'; to follow a published US national security policy that says the US must forever remain indisputedly dominant over the entire globe; and in short to tear up every international concensus on national moral action - hardwon by tens of millions of deaths - to allow the US to behave whichever way it damn well likes.

Posted by Anonymous : 4/13/2006 01:01:00 PM

Humour - that's like renaming you Huskynutcase, isn't it? It's very apt, you know.

I actually did reply to your lengthy epistl, but it failed to post, and having failed to save it, I couldn't be bothered rewriting it. If you give another hour to finish some work, I'll rebuff you one more time and hence improve you.

Posted by Anonymous : 4/13/2006 02:17:00 PM

adrien - "The only group showing disregard for international law here is the Iranian government."

really? Is rummy paying you to spout such wildly incorrect things.

oh, whoops how silly of me, the US hasnt broken any international laws and treaties has it.

And whats with all the infantile name calling? how old are you?

Posted by Anonymous : 4/13/2006 03:36:00 PM

Yes 'anonymous' - I get a large stipend from the Pentagon to engage in psych-ops on the internet, trying to stifle those troublesome pinkos before they find out about our plans to invade Iran and then Syria and then France and then... Actually, it's just as well you're too cowardly/smart to attach a name to your post. If we could find out who you are we'd hunt you down and torture you for thoughtcrime....

As for my promised riposte, dear huskymoonbat, will you accept tomorrow morning? It's close to midnight here in the Great Satan, and I'm fading...

Posted by Anonymous : 4/13/2006 03:51:00 PM

Lady, you're not fading, you're melting...

Posted by Unknown : 4/13/2006 05:15:00 PM

Adrien: Yeah right - so having a nutcase Iranian go on about 'wiping Israel off the map' is a response to America...

Funnily enough I don't recall you criticising the nutcase Yanks who want to wipe Iran off the map by nuking the country. What's the matter? Too busy hurling playground abuse at other posters to notice your own hypocrisy?

Posted by Anonymous : 4/13/2006 07:11:00 PM

Right - new day, so here we go, Huskymoonbat, with the requested rebuttal...

First, factual checks. If you go to Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_size_of_Armed_Forces you will see that Israel is 27th on the list, and not fourth as you claim when you state that "Israel has the 4th largest army on the planet". Big difference there. You should also note that in military spending, Israel dosn't rank in the top ten (http://www.mapsofworld.com/world-top-ten/world-top-ten-military-spending-countries-map.html) Consider yourself Fisked on that point.

As for your claim that every Arab country (presumably) feels threatened by Israel's military muscle - this is ludicrous. A tiny island of six million people, surrounded by hostile countries that have attacked it before and have often threatened to destroy it. Syria has a population of 18 million, Iran 66 million, etc etc. I'm no fan of Israel having nuclear weapons - or countries having them in general, beyond the 100-200 warhaeds that would be more than adequate as a deterrent for anyone - but I fail to see how turning a blind eye to a militaristic regime developing more of these weapons somehow contributes to stability. Are you honestly telling me that Iran fears being attacked by Israel? Like Pakistan and India, we are closer to having yet another region dangerously close to nuclear exchange. And the estimated death toll from a Pakistan/India nuclear exchange is 50 million or more.

As for your semantic tightrope-walking about Ahnutcase saying what he means - you must be joking! So declaring that "Israel should be wiped off the map" is in no way a declaation of intent, huh? Then what the hell is it? A jocular piece of humour? Let's remember that this is the man who was very likely involved in the hostage-taking at the US embassy (see wikipedia).

Which leads me into what is perhaps your magnum opus of stupid comments - that we shouldb't confuse 'words with actions'. Let's turn to that...

Besides invading sovereign US territory during the revolution and taing prisoners, Iran has continously been a supporter of terrorism since 1979. This is not 'terrorism with a small 't'', this is the brutal killing of civilians - often because they are Jewish. Let's look at this: The Jewish centre that was blown up in Buenos Aires in 1994, killing 85 people - Jews, BECAUSE THEY WERE JEWS - in ARGENTINA! - was the work of Lebanese Hezbollah organised by Iran. 2 years before that Hezbollah killed 29 Jews, also in Argentina. As wikipedia notes of both attacks: "Hizbollah is believed to be behind the attack, with backing from Iran".

Iran also issued the fatwa against Salman Rushdie - claiming capital jurisdiction over a UK citizen - to quote Mark Steyn on the affair:

Iran’s supreme leader instructed Muslims around the world to serve as executioners of the Islamic Republic—and they did, killing not Rushdie himself but his Japanese translator, and stabbing the Italian translator, and shooting the Italian publisher, and killing three dozen persons with no connection to the book when a mob burned down a hotel because of the presence of the novelist’s Turkish translator.

I'm going to post this and continue below...

Posted by Anonymous : 4/14/2006 02:08:00 AM

Iran is also "the primary sponsor of terrorist groups including the Al-Aqsa Martyr Brigades (terrorist wing of Fatah which is a branch of the PLO), The Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, The PFLP-General Command, Hamas, Palestinian Islamic Jihad, Hezbollah, and a wide range of other anti-Israeli organizations".

So we have here threats to wipe Israel off the map, a complete disregard for international law, and a long history of sponsoring death against Jews, who have NEVER invaded, or threatened to invade, Iran. And you think it's no big deal that they acquire nuclear weapons? Well I differ.

We could go on about many more incidents of state-funded Iranian terror, but let's turn to how Iran treats its citizens...

It hangs homosexuals, has long brutalized its ba'hai minority (here's a nice little case study: "Washington, D.C., July 22 - Representatives of the American Baha'i
community announced today that on July 21 Iranian authorities in
Mashhad summarily executed an Iranian Baha'i who had been charged
with converting a Muslim to the Baha'i Faith".), and the position of women in Iran since the revolution is best described as 'appalling'. You might argue that brutalising women and killing homosexuals and ba'hais bears no relation to Iranian efforts to get the bomb - I would have to disagree. It shows the dangerous barbarity of relgious fundamentalism.

But lets finish by looking at a story from London's Telegraph. I'll post it for you (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml?xml=/news/2006/02/19/wiran19.xml)

Iranian fatwa approves use of nuclear weapons
By Colin Freeman and Philip Sherwell in Washington
(Filed: 19/02/2006)

Iran's hardline spiritual leaders have issued an unprecedented new fatwa, or holy order, sanctioning the use of atomic weapons against its enemies.

In yet another sign of Teheran's stiffening resolve on the nuclear issue, influential Muslim clerics have for the first time questioned the theocracy's traditional stance that Sharia law forbade the use of nuclear weapons.


Great. A country bristling with religious extremism and hatred for the Jews, run by a certifiable madman - if the world community cannot summon the courage to stop these people from acquiring the nuclear weapons to back their rhetoric, then heaven help us. If you see the US as the bad guy here, then I fear you're beyond redemption.

Now - final questions.

Are you happy that Israel prevented Iraq from developing nukes??

You speak of the US 'invading multiple countries'. Which of these do you oppose Do you oppose the first gulf war? How about the US intervention in Bosnia (as I can't help mentioning, after UN troops stoo around and watched civilians being rounded up and led to their deaths). Do you oppose the destruction of the Taliban regime in Afghanistan? And if so, why?

Last question - would you, Huskynut, support militay intervention in Sudan, where despite the finger-wagging of the UN, genocide is being carried out with impunity?

Looking at the record of the UN - from kickbacks to Saddam to Dutch troops watching civilians being rounded up in Bosnia, to its failure to act on the genocide in Sudan, to its ludicrous "human rights body", which included Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Sierra Leone, Algeria, and other monstrosities, I have to disagree with your final point - if this is what "tens of millions of deaths" have won, then we really need to look at massive reform and a new international body. What the current body will do, if anything, to prevent a nation run by radical haters from acquiring the most lethal weapons known, will be a good yardstick for its continuing relevance.

Posted by Anonymous : 4/14/2006 02:46:00 AM

One last point - here's a nice summary from a left winger of the situation in Kosovo and the left's response: Is the US and Britain's strong-arming of NATO distasteful to you Huskynut, given your opposition to "the morally indefensible position of invading sovereign nations"?

From "Kosovo and the Left" by Roger Lippman:
http://www.glypx.com/balkanwitness/rl.htm

Those who oppose NATO military intervention should be asked what they had to say before. Did they ever speak for the defense of Kosovo against Serbia? (Or, for that matter, are they speaking in defense of the Kosovars now?) They have the responsibility to offer serious, credible alternatives. Otherwise, their alternative to intervention is to give Milosevic a free hand. The last decade and the last months show that Milosevic did not and will not negotiate over Kosovo in good faith. The years of organized non-violence by ethnic Albanians yielded only sustained violence from the Serbs and virtually nothing from the international community. Meanwhile, the example of the Serbian destruction of Bosnia was right there in front of us, and the same or worse has been happening in Kosovo.

Some say that intervention in Kosovo should be under the auspices of the U.N. Clearly, that would be better than NATO. However, given the opposition of China and Russia, who have veto power, the Security Council has not been able to reach agreement on any intervention. So the result would be to leave the Kosovo Albanians at the mercy of Milosevic. If the final destruction of Kosovo is to be prevented, someone has to act. (For background on the role of the U.N., see The UN's Surprising Support, by the Institute for War and Peace Reporting.)

Morally indefensible, huh?? Morally indefensible to do nothing like the UN did, if you ask me.

Posted by Anonymous : 4/14/2006 03:01:00 AM

And while I'm avoiding work, Huskynutt, I found a wonderful new left manifesto that sums up pretty well my political position:

http://eustonmanifesto.org/joomla/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=12&Itemid=1

Naturally, you should read it and begin your liberation from your current symphony of apologetics for appalling regimes. Here's a little bit just for you:

10) A new internationalism.
We stand for an internationalist politics and the reform of international law — in the interests of global democratization and global development. Humanitarian intervention, when necessary, is not a matter of disregarding sovereignty, but of lodging this properly within the "common life" of all peoples. If in some minimal sense a state protects the common life of its people (if it does not torture, murder and slaughter its own civilians, and meets their most basic needs of life), then its sovereignty is to be respected. But if the state itself violates this common life in appalling ways, its claim to sovereignty is forfeited and there is a duty upon the international community of intervention and rescue. Once a threshold of inhumanity has been crossed, there is a "responsibility to protect".

11) A critical openness.
Drawing the lesson of the disastrous history of left apologetics over the crimes of Stalinism and Maoism, as well as more recent exercises in the same vein (some of the reaction to the crimes of 9/11, the excuse-making for suicide-terrorism, the disgraceful alliances lately set up inside the "anti-war" movement with illiberal theocrats), we reject the notion that there are no opponents on the Left. We reject, similarly, the idea that there can be no opening to ideas and individuals to our right. Leftists who make common cause with, or excuses for, anti-democratic forces should be criticized in clear and forthright terms. Conversely, we pay attention to liberal and conservative voices and ideas if they contribute to strengthening democratic norms and practices and to the battle for human progress.


And hoorah for that...

Posted by Anonymous : 4/14/2006 03:48:00 AM

aiden notes that he doesnt see much in the way of solutions around here and then he immediatly gets two posts that prove his point - no solution only whinging.
Id like to here people propose a solution other than "the US is evil" or "lets do nothing! we haven't tried that before!"

Posted by Genius : 4/14/2006 11:33:00 AM

Genius:
Leaving Adrien's strawmen rants aside, there are plenty of solutions on offer out there. For one ...

Take the NPT seriously, for everyone. If other players get to ignore the NPT whenever they want, then so does Iran.

Do Iran get power plants under the NPT? You bet they do! Given that the sum total of their current work could produce one minimum sized bomb in 13 years if they never use anything for power I hardly see the rush for more than that.

Posted by tussock : 4/15/2006 03:53:00 AM

tussock: that is a classic example of what is NOT a solution.

What you are saying effectively is that you want to take away all the international communities tools except for the hammer (or maybe the screw driver).

That way no matter what the job is, and waht the best solution is, it will get exactly the same treatment.
that is "fair" but it is also very stupid.

Also which country are you suggesting is being treated differently?

1) the US china rusia france UK are official nuclear powers
2) israel pakistain and india arenot signatories so are not covered
3) nth korea and iran are signatories (although nth korea "withdrew")

> Do Iran get power plants under the NPT? You bet they do!

Maybe we can work out a deal to subsidize the use of petrolium for fuel in iran. or selling them "pre-enriched" uranium.
But really I dont mind them having a nuclear power plant they just need to be reasonable enough to go through the process required to make the IAEA happy. A country shouldn't be surprised or offended if the rest of the world is a litle paranoid about uranium enrichment.
Another solution would be to pay iran costs for the delay of their programme.
Anyway, At the moment they seem to be being all confrontational.

Posted by Genius : 4/15/2006 05:56:00 AM

Here is the official solution.

Making nuclear fuel should be taken out of the hands of individual nations and put into multilateral groups in order to keep countries from secretly developing atomic weapons, a UN report said.
The report by a panel of experts to Mohamed ElBaradei, head of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), comes ahead of a meeting in New York in May 2005 to review the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), which gives the IAEA a mandate to verify that atomic programs in over 180 signatory nations are peaceful.
ElBaradei has warned that the NPT, in effect since 1970, has serious flaws at a time when the international community is worried about atomic programs in Iran and North Korea. The world cannot continue allowing countries to develop the ability to make nuclear fuel that can also be used to make atomic bombs, ElBaradei told AFP in an interview in January. "We just cannot continue business as usual that every country can build its own factories for separating plutonium or enriching uranium. Then we are really talking about 30, 40 countries sitting on the fence with a nuclear weapons capability that could be converted into a nuclear weapon in a matter of months," ElBaradei said. (AFP Feb. 23, 2005)

I would contemplate excluding USA and China for practical reasons.

Posted by Genius : 4/15/2006 06:18:00 AM

I love the term 'strawman' - what it means in the context Tussock uses it is 'I am not able to refute your points effectively or actually engage you in debate, so I will obfuscate things and acuse you of something meaningless and unspecific'.

C'mon Tussock - plenty of factual points in the 'strawmen' post of mine. Historical events. If you think it's inaccurate please do say why. Though I doubt you have anything to refute it with, hence the evasion.

Posted by Anonymous : 4/15/2006 12:57:00 PM

Genius while I agree with what you posted as a solution you have no means of enforcing it if a soverign nation says 'No'.

This is the current problem - even after the EU and Russia suggested possible solutions which I think the US would of agreed to as long mointoring was up to scratch.

Let's switch the whole argument around to where an Israel states it wants to wiped Iran off the map and does have nuclear weapons.

There would be wails of disgust from every country in the world - why is this not happening with Iran?

If you don't want to have a military solution then a strong dimplomatic solution is required.

That would be sanactions and isolating Iran from the rest of the world (send there diplomats home).

That's the whole problem with the UN - the lack of any enforcement.

Basically everyone has worked that that the UN is a lame duck and you can do anything and get away with it.

Posted by Anonymous : 4/16/2006 03:30:00 PM

Yes anonymous,
practical solutions and idealistic ones are different - sometimes it is hard to tell which you are debating.

Practically (in the short term anyway) we have to deal with a world where the UN is fairly useless.

Posted by Genius : 4/16/2006 04:14:00 PM

The UN is not just useless - it is an appalling apologist for States that brutally torture and murder their citizens.

Posted by Anonymous : 4/16/2006 04:46:00 PM