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Finally, Obama will have a war he can really call his own

February 10, 2010

What a relief!!! It is almost like being finally able to go to the loo when in distress after a long drawn business meeting. You see it is one of those things that every modern American president must have. One cannot be taken seriously if one does not have this must have – either by the American public or the world at large. It is like one of those things you do when you enter the White House – you give your kids a poodle. Chelsea had it, as did the Bush siblings and of course the Obama girls had to have one too. You see, to be the president of the world’s most powerful nation, there are certain things you must do. Give your kids a poodle, give your wife a few social issues to dabble with, give the American people a war they won’t forget in a hurry!!! History must have something to remember you by – right?

Reagan had the famous Pakistan centric Afghan proxy war against the abominable Soviets. George Bush Sr. entered Kuwait and gave Saddam a bashing that the people back home just loved, cluster bombs and all. Clinton had a tryst with Serbia and bombed Baghdad when caught with his pants down. Bill Clinton had several wars at once, the Serbian war, the Iraqi bombing and the one he had with the media – courtesy his friend and intern Monica Lewinsky. George W. Bush had to have one too. He started where his father had left off – Iraq. While Bush Sr. was content with getting Kuwait out of the clutches of Saddam, the young Bush was a wee bit more ambitious. He entered Iraq, sought a regime change, made sure Saddam was caught and hanged and his sons killed. He went the whole hog. He wanted to be as presidential as his predecessors and perhaps a shade more – so he did what no other president in modern history had done. He invaded a foreign land and made it his own. He also invaded another country – but only to make a point. He entered Afghanistan because he was forced to. He committed just enough troops so that he could hold on to the blighted country but his baby really was Iraq. That was his war and that was what he relished.

Obama took office and immediately started looking for a war he could call his own. He hated being a foster father. Iraq was a no go. He had to get out of Iraq. He could not be seen holding on to another’s baby, could he? He then tried to take up Afghanistan, the one war Bush did not particularly like. He tried making Afghanistan his own war. He pledged more troops, and tried to showcase it as the real war. The war against terror! The bad news for him was that nothing spectacular was happening, and the worst news was that body bags were coming home in numbers that did not make him particularly popular. Afghanistan soon became one war that did not have that zing, that action, that X factor that makes it unique. To put it plainly, Afghanistan did not catch the imagination of the people as did Iraq for the Bush father son duo or Falklands for Thatcher.

Thankfully, there was light at the end of the tunnel. The blighted Mullah’s of Iran were hell-bent on getting a nuclear bomb. They thought that the world did not know about their ‘secret’ nuclear plants. But the world did. The world knew not only about the one near Tehran but also the other one near Qom. The world also made sure that some of their nuclear scientists were captured and taken to destinations that remain unknown. Sanctions have already been put in place. Iranians were given the option to send uranium to Russia for enrichment enough for the needs of a power plant. The Persians agreed. But The Israeli’s were not sure (praise the Lord). Besides, if the Iranians played by the book, how were we to get the war that we so want? Silly Ahmedinijad!! It was such a relief when they said that they would enrich uranium to 20%. Now, they are talking. Some more sanctions have been thrown in. Obama is seething with rage. He is also happy he will get what he wants. The Russians are on board. It is just the Chinese that are holding out. They are fuming at the arms sale to Taipei. But that can’t be taken back. They will have to barter with something else.

The president will not let go this chance to have a toy of his own. He has to have a war, for Chrissake!!!  Can’t you see!!! All those demonstrations against the regime were just a charade. You cannot do a Khomenei now that we are on the other side. A people’s movement that overthrows the regime in Tehran will rob the president the one thing that he so dearly desires – a war. Afghanistan was somebody else’s baby. That is no war. That is like fighting a ghost – a ghost no one can really see. That is no war – not a real war. This war in Iran will be a real war, with full media coverage, bombs lighting up Tehran – the works. It will be Baghdad of 2003 revisited. This is going to be interesting. Christian Amanpour – are you ready with your camera crew and all? Here is your chance to be famous again. CNN guys – are you ready to buy another Al-Jazeera – for there might just be another Middle Eastern blighter who is there before all you guys from the west with the best pictures and the latest feeds. Strap up you boots and get ready for here we come, fighter planes, missiles, aircraft carriers, tanks and armored vehicles et al, with TV crews in tow. The president must have a war – he cannot be denied what is rightfully his. Did someone say that the president has just received the Nobel Peace Prize? Oh heck – this war is for peace! Must the president spell out everything for you?

Update 11.02.2010: Iranian leader Mahmud Ahmedinijad on the occasion of anniversary of the Islamic Revolution has declared that Iran has been able to enrich uranium to 20 percent. From here going to weapon grade uranium enrichment should not be too difficult. He however added that Iran won’t enrich uranium to weapon grade. CNN has reported the news as follows:

In a speech that lasted more than an hour, Ahmadinejad confirmed that his country had now enriched uranium to 20 percent — sufficient, scientists say, to create a nuclear reaction.

He added that Iran is capable of enriching uranium up to 80 percent but won’t.

Ahmadinejad also touched on familiar topics: He lashed out at the West, particularly the United States, and criticized its relationship with Iran’s rival, Israel.

This is a direct challenge to the West and a very real threat to security of the region. It will be interesting to see as to how the West reacts to this development. Mere slapping of sanctions won’t help. The Iranians fear a backlash from the West and a possible regime change.

Update 15.02.2010: Hillary Clinton on her recent trip to the Middle East has said that Iran was turning into a ‘dictatorship’. She was speaking in Qatar. It is clear that the wheels have started turning and what Jack Straw and Dick Cheney did with Iraq, Clinton and Brown could do with Iran – dish out falsehood and half truths to do what they want to do. She was asked repeatedly whether the US plans to invade Iran and she replied in the negative. The BBC has reported her stance as follows:

Iran is “becoming a military dictatorship”, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has said.

She was speaking to students at a Qatar university during a tour of the region.

She said Iran’s elite army corps, the Revolutionary Guard, had gained so much power they had effectively supplanted the government.

Earlier, aides revealed Mrs Clinton would press Saudi Arabia to help persuade China to support a tougher stand against Iran’s nuclear ambitions.

It will be interesting to see how this unfolds. Getting the Security Council to pass a resolution to take punitive action against Tehran may be impossible, and Obama may have no choice but to do what Bush and Blair did in 2002 – pass a resolution similar to resolution 1441 and go to war. An Iran Inquiry in 2015?

Update 16.02.2010: The Iranian threat is being taken seriously by the other nations in the region was clear when Saudis voiced their concern about Tehran’s nuclear program. They said that sanctions could be a long term measure but the dangers of a nuclear Iran are immediate. The Sunni countries are wary of the rise of Shia Iran. It helps the west as Iran is isolated in the region because of this religious divide. What this means is, that even if the west went for a military option, there will be no mourners for the demise of the regime in Tehran. Iran is as isolated now as Iraq was in the early 2000’s. In that this is a dangerous development as a war is a very real possibility.

Update 11.03.2010: US Vice President Joe Biden’s visit to Israel is an indicator that the Obama administration is taking Israel’s concern vis-a-vis Iran seriously. Joe Biden’s visit is seen in Israel more as a symbolism rather than any concrete step towards action. The Vice President is not seen by Tel Aviv as someone who is kept in the loop by the Obama administration on the day-today developments in the Middle East. If ever there was a nation that could cock a snook at Washington and get away with it – it is Israel. It is the Israeli leaders who do not hesitate to keep a condescending hand on the shoulders of American top leadership. Israel is a nation of multi-millionaires. They have clout and it shows.  They are also a very closely knit society and the Jewish sense of community is very strong.

Israel is preparing itself for all eventualities. They have been testing their long range strike aircrafts the F-15’s with mid-air refuelling routine. evidently looking at the Iranian threat. The west is loathe to see an Israeli pre-emptive strike on Iran as they feel any such move will have wide ranging repercussions. But it must be also be said that the Islamic world is not all homogeneous and the Sunni nations are vary of Iran’s missile capability. Secretary of Defence, Robert Gates recent visit to Riyadh was with this in mind. Further sanctions have been placed on Iran. Ahmedinijad’s visit to his Shia counterpart in a predominantly Sunni Syria was to garner support. His visit to Afghanistan where he called on President Hamid Karzai to get rid of foreign forces was a feeble attempt at showing that his country understood the strategic implications of American forces on both the west and east of Iran’s borders. The region is hotting up perceptibly.

Addendum: The one man in Obama administration: While Joe Biden was on a visit to Israel, Tel Aviv announced another 1600 housing units in East Jerusalem settlement of  Ramat Shlomo. This was as obvious a slight at the Vice President and at the US as any.  The US administration had two options, either to grin and bear the insult or to stand up and talk tough. The only man in the Obama administration, Hillary Clinton chose to speak her mind. She told Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu that the move was ‘deeply negative’ for the US-Israel relations. She further said that she could not understand as to how this could happen especially in the light of strong US commitment to Israeli security.  The BBC has reported Hillary Clinton’s displeasure with Israeli government as follows:

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has sharply rebuked Israel over its recent decision to build new settlements in East Jerusalem.

She told Israeli PM Binyamin Netanyahu by telephone that the move was “deeply negative” for US-Israeli relations.

The BBC’s Washington correspondent, Kim Ghattas, says it was a rare and sharp rebuke from Washington.

Israel’s announcement overshadowed a visit by US Vice-President Joe Biden aimed at restarting peace talks.

Binyamin Netanyahu on his part has assured that he will try and find out as to how the announcement of new housing units in East Jerusalem coincided with Joe Biden’s visit to Israel!!

2 Comments leave one →
  1. February 10, 2010 8:55 pm

    I don’t mean to be too in your face with this, but let’s just say I definitely have a different view on the subject. Great post though…

  2. sharma24 permalink*
    February 11, 2010 2:33 am

    Good for you!

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