Wednesday, June 17, 2009

NOW Can We Agree That Iran's Nuclear Program Is A Bad Thing? (Updated)

In discussing last week's elections in Iran (in Don't Call What Happened in Iran Last Week an Election), Christopher Hitchens recalls what he witnessed while in Lebanon:
Mention of the Lebanese elections impels me to pass on what I saw with my own eyes at a recent Hezbollah rally in south Beirut, Lebanon. In a large hall that featured the official attendance of a delegation from the Iranian Embassy, the most luridly displayed poster of the pro-Iranian party was a nuclear mushroom cloud! Underneath this telling symbol was a caption warning the "Zionists" of what lay in store. We sometimes forget that Iran still officially denies any intention of acquiring nuclear weapons. Yet Ahmadinejad recently hailed an Iranian missile launch as a counterpart to Iran's success with nuclear centrifuges, and Hezbollah has certainly been allowed to form the idea that the Iranian reactors may have nonpeaceful applications. This means, among other things, that the vicious manipulation by which the mullahs control Iran can no longer be considered their "internal affair." Fascism at home sooner or later means fascism abroad. Face it now or fight it later. Meanwhile, give it its right name. [emphasis added]
Following the results of the election and the demonstrations, even those who championed the potential for dialog with Iran have reassessed their opinions--even Roger Cohen. Does anyone still believe that the goal of Iran's nuclear program is not to create nuclear arms?

UPDATE: JammieWearingFool notes an unexpected admission about Iran's plans for a nuclear weapon:
Iran wants the ability to build nuclear weapons to gain a reputation as a major power in the Middle East, the head of the U.N. nuclear watchdog said in a BBC interview broadcast Wednesday.
Not that the UN will do anything about it.

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