[Washington Babylon ]Will the Bush Administration Strike Iran? | Harper's Magazine

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[Washington Babylon]

Will the Bush Administration Strike Iran?

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Laura Rozen has been running an interesting forum on Iran at Mother Jones, which asks: “How likely is a scenario in which the United States or Israel strikes Iran before Bush leaves office? (Or is the Left falling for the hawks’ propaganda?)”

From Danny Postel, the author of Reading Legitimation Crisis in Tehran: Iran and the Future of Liberalism and a member of Chicago’s No War on Iran Coalition:

None of us can be certain at this point whether the US or Israel will attack Iran, but I read recent signs as being just ominous enough that I’d rather err on the side of being too worried than of not being worried enough. Even that paragon of cool sobriety The Economist now concludes that Israel’s recent maneuvers suggest that it might not be bluffing. One thing we do know is that the intellectual runway is being slicked for an attack. John Bolton has floated the suggestion that Israel will attack after the November elections but before the next president takes office, while Daniel Pipes has evoked the same scenario, only with the US doing the job.

From Yossi Melman, a national security correspondent for Israeli daily Haaretz:

Very, very unlikely. The military and intelligence contingency plans to attack Iran are still in the making. From the operational point of view, Israel and the US are not ready yet. The supportive political-diplomatic environment has not been created yet. Attacking Iran is considered by Israeli military and political decision makers as a last resort. I assume that they and the international community, including the US, are waiting to see the results of next year’s presidential elections in Iran, to be held in May 2009.

There’s another item up today with final thoughts.

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