Flimsy Sanity: World War III

Flimsy Sanity

In individuals, insanity is rare; but in groups, parties, nations and epochs, it is the rule. - Friedrich Nietzsche

Monday, October 22, 2007

World War III

(Thanks to Michael Greenwell)

I signed up to be notified of new Frontline productions and this came today:

This Week: "Showdown With Iran" (60 minutes),
Tuesday, Oct. 23 at 9pm on PBS (check local listings)
Live Discussion: Chat with producer Greg Barker, Wed., Oct. 24, at 11
am ET

Will there be another war in the Middle East -- a war between the U.S.
and Iran?

This Tuesday FRONTLINE traces the complex relationship between the two
countries since 9/1l. From cooperation during the war in Afghanistan to
confrontation today in Iraq, there appear to be hawks and doves in
both nations striving to control policy. However, Iran's determination to
continue with its nuclear program and its support of Shia militias who
are attacking U.S. forces in Iraq are the factors that could cause
President Bush to order military action.

Says former U.N. Ambassador John Bolton, "I don't know what the
president will do between now and the end of the administration. He has said
repeatedly that it is unacceptable for Iran to have nuclear weapons, and
if he means unacceptable, then I assume he would take military action
if he had to."

Such analysis doesn't seem to frighten the Iranians. Their Supreme
Leader has said, "The U.S. can't do a damn thing to us." And the deputy
head of Iran's National Security Council, Mohammad Jafari, tells FRONTLINE
in his first-ever television interview:

"You will not find a single instance in which a country has inflicted
harm on us and we have left it without a response. So if the United
States makes such a mistake, they should know that we will definitely
respond. And we don't make idle threats."

Jafari is senior commander of the Quds Force, the elite foreign
operations branch of Iran's Revolutionary Guards, and a man the U.S. almost
caught with other Iranian operatives inside Iraq earlier this year.
Iranian hardliners are rarely seen on American television. But FRONTLINE
producer Greg Barker and co-producer Claudia Rizzi, were able to convince
some of the most senior players in Iran's power structure to speak
with them.

The Iranians display a profound distrust of the U.S., especially its
actions in Iraq. While welcoming the demise of their arch-enemy, Saddam
Hussein, they say the U.S. should now get out. Iran has great influence
with the Shia government in Iraq that the U.S. helped bring to power.
One expert in the program notes the irony: the U.S. action in Iraq has
inadvertently helped pave the way for a revival of Iran's historic
ambition to be the key power in the region.

To understand the context for the current U.S.-Iran stand-off, we
invite you to join us Tuesday night. And if you miss the program, it's
available for viewing on our Web site, along with the interviews with key
Iranian officials, more analysis of the issues, and a report by Barker on
the making of this film. And, we invite you to join in the discussion.


  • At 6:22 PM, Anonymous RJ Adams said…

    Scott Ritter's predictions have been remarkably accurate over the last few years. I well remember him stating prior to the Iraq invasion that it was 90% - 95% certain Saddam had no weapons of mass destruction. I believe he is almost certainly correct concerning Iran. The Frontline program should prove interesting.


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