Are the Gulfies This Crazy …?

At the opposite end of the spectrum of reactions was a major Gulf state official. Speaking privately, not for quotation, he said, “if I had to choose between living with a nuclear Shiite Iran across the Gulf from us, and the bombing of Iran’s nuclear installations, with all the dire consequences of such an attack, I would still opt for bombing.”

While it has been fun to watch Chirac make the unforgiveable political mistake — telling the truth — over Iran’s nuclear capabilities, it should be stressed that the Israelis do not believe their own propaganda concerning Iran.

Truth be told, I am starting to get a bit scared, but maybe that is just because the White House has sent Cheney out to the media. I still think it is mostly bluster, but:

“A mistake could be made and you could end up in something that neither side ever really wanted, and suddenly it’s August 1914 all over again,” the U.S. officer said on condition of anonymity, because of the sensitivity of the issue. “I really believe neither side wants a fight.”

Update: A propos French president Chirac, check the remarkz in French:

“Je dirais que ce n’est pas tellement dangereux par le fait d’avoir une bombe nucléaire – peut-être une deuxième un peu plus tard, bon… ça n’est pas très dangereux. Mais ce qui est dangereux, c’est la prolifération. Ça veut dire que si l’Iran poursuit son chemin et maîtrise totalement la technique électronucléaire, le danger n’est pas dans la bombe qu’il va avoir, et qui ne lui servira à rien… Il va l’envoyer où, cette bombe ? Sur Israël ? Elle n’aura pas fait 200 mètres dans l’atmosphère que Téhéran sera rasée.” (…)
“J’ai eu un mot rapide, et je retire naturellement, quand j’ai dit : “on va raser Téhéran”. C’est évidemment une boutade dans mon esprit… mais bon. Je n’imagine pas que l’on puisse raser Téhéran !”

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4 Replies to “Are the Gulfies This Crazy …?”

  1. I agree, but the 1914 reference speaks to the fact that the conflict would spiral out of control, convulse the entire region and thus involve many who are currently sitting on the sidelines.

  2. yes, i know, but i disagree with the 1914 reference. using that analog is similar to when people point to munich and say that discussing things is akin to appeasement – it doesn’t reflect on the historical context. of course, i may be very wrong, but i see the “relationship” between iran and the US to resemble (to some degree) the cold war, and not a build up to an actual war.

  3. I was talking to this guy yesterday who works in the Gulf, and basically, the media propaganda there feeds idea of perpetual preceived threat coming from the Persian side.

    And the people are convinced that Shi’a (the famous crescent), Iran, Hizbullah, are all interchangeable concepts and images.

    Next to it, Lebanon is a beacon of critical thinking!

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