Iran nuclear bomb would be calamitous: U.S. militaryIran's Arab neighbors are already wary of Iran's intentions in the region--so Mullen's analysis of the consequences of a nuclear Iran seem like common sense:
The consequences of Iran acquiring a nuclear weapon would be "calamitous" and major powers must act together to prevent it, the top U.S. military officer said on Thursday.
Admiral Mike Mullen's remarks came the day after Iran's president announced the country had tested a missile that analysts said could hit Israel and U.S. bases in the Gulf, a major source of crude oil for the United States.
The United States and other Western powers are concerned that Iran could combine elements of its uranium enrichment and missile programs to create a nuclear weapon, although Tehran denies it intends to do this.
"I'm one who believes that Iran getting a nuclear weapon is calamitous for the region and for the world," Mullen, chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff, told the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee.
"It then, in my view, generates neighbors who feel exposed, deficient and then develop or buy the capability themselves," he said, suggesting Iran's acquisition of a nuclear weapon likely would trigger a nuclear arms race in the Middle East.Yet for all that, Mullen stops short of what may end up being the only effective option:
"The downside, potentially, is absolutely disastrous."
But Mullen did not suggest the United States should take military action to prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons.So when Obama's 'dealine' is reached and Iran will have proven unresponsive, what then? By that time, Iran will have instituted every possible defense of their nuclear facilities.
He echoed the Obama administration's policy that big powers should work together to persuade Iran not to pursue a nuclear bomb and halt the proliferation of nuclear weapons generally.
"Major leaders, internationally, have got to come together to arrest this growth or the long-term downside for the people in the world is really, really tragic and drastic," he said.
Israel and the United States have not ruled out military action against Iran but the Obama administration has adopted a policy of trying to engage Tehran diplomatically to resolve differences.
Is this really going to fall on Israel's shoulders?
Technorati Tag: Iran.