Skip to main content

The Neocon factor

THE US involvement with the disastrous Iraqi war ended four months ago; it cost it in excess of 4,500 dead, 30,000 wounded, and more than a trillion dollars.

The invasion launched in March 2003 was a conflict of choice, since no compelling rationale existed to justify it. Yet, at the time it was vigorously promoted with a well-orchestrated campaign, conducted through mass media, and argued by a coalition of zealous politicians known as neoconservatives.

Supporters of the invasion were generally sympathisers of Israel, and believed that Saddam Hussein was a peril to the Jewish state and inimical to the US interests. As it turned out, the Iraqi ruler was far more concerned about a threat from Iran, and his bedraggled army presented no real danger to Israel, let alone the US, his frequent empty blusters against the Jewish state notwithstanding.

In the months preceding the invasion, the perception was generated that Saddam Hussein was involved in the 9/11 terrorist attacks, had stockpiles of weapons of mass destruction, including chemical, biological and possibly nuclear weapons, which he was ready to transfer to Al Qaeda terrorists. It is now clear that most if not all the damning information was drawn from faulty or unreliable intelligence reports that ultimately proved fallacious. The realisation of the pointlessness of the Iraqi war drove the popularity of President Bush to one of the lowest levels for any president.

Nearly a decade has passed since the US and Britain invaded Iraq, the involvement lasting nearly nine years. The repercussions of the invasion, nevertheless, continue to torment the Iraqi population, while thousands of returning American war veterans suffer from devastating physical and mental disabilities. Although withdrawn from Iraq, US forces continue to battle the Taliban insurgents in Afghanistan as they have been doing for 11 years.

Initially, the war had some worthy objective: to rid the country of the brutal, misogynistic Taliban rule. America, however, was unprepared for the enormous task of reconstruction and radical transformation of Afghan society, which had stubbornly resisted such changes for millenniums. The war is no longer popular. Recent opinion polls have shown that a clear majority (69 per cent) of American public is tired of the conflict, and would like the troops brought home.

While the situation in Afghanistan remains volatile, there are signs of an incipient conflict with Iran on the issue of nuclear arms development. Much of the rhetoric urging a military strike against Iran is driven by the same coalition of forces that pushed this country to invade Iraq nearly a decade ago — Israel’s supporters, evangelical Christians and conservative politicians. They believe that a nuclear Iran would constitute an existential threat to Israel.

Iran is already reeling under punitive economic sanctions mandated by the UN, but many from both Democratic and Republican parties would like to see military action against Iran’s nuclear installations. The Iranian leader, President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, does not help his cause or earn world sympathy as, while stridently denying any intention of making nuclear weapons, he makes inflammatory statements against Israel, threatening to wipe the country out of existence.

Such bluster is ill-advised, but more importantly is devoid of any real credibility, since Israel has a powerful arsenal of nuclear weapons and an efficient delivery system, capable of reaching Iranian metropolises.

It is unlikely that in this election year, with all the economic and financial problems facing the country, the Obama administration will initiate a new conflict with Iran by targeting its uranium enrichment facilities. President Obama has made that much clear, repudiating “the loose talk of war.” Even the Israeli rhetoric has largely cooled, although only two months ago a unilateral Israeli strike looked very likely.

The US has apparently succeeded, at least temporarily, in restraining the hawkish Israeli Prime Minister, Netanyahu, from attacking Iranian uranium-enrichment facilities, since it would drag the US into the conflict, with unforeseeable consequences. Various opinion polls suggest that the Israeli public also has no appetite for initiating the war with Iran, inviting retaliatory attacks.

The powerful influence that the Israeli government can exert on the US foreign policy was evident last month, when its highly influential lobbying group, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), held its annual convention in Washington D.C. The highest officials of the US government, senators, congressmen, along with the president and his Republican rivals, made their appearance and reaffirmed their commitment to Israel in its confrontation with Iran. The support of the US politicians does not flow gratuitously or entirely for altruistic considerations.

Pro-Israel donors have contributed over $47m since 2000 to various candidates of both parties seeking elections to the US Congress. While the debate about how aggressive the US policy should be towards Iran is driven mainly by the most hawkish Israeli supporters, it is no secret that Saudi Arabia and the Gulf States, fearful of a nuclear Iran, will shed no tears if Iran’s nuclear capabilities are crippled.

Paradoxically, opposition to any military action against Iran also comes from an unlikely source, some liberal Jewish groups in America. In recent years, a coalition of progressive Jews, known as J Street, that supports the two-state solution, one Jewish and the other Palestinians, has gained much strength and visibility.

They present an alternative to the more hawkish groups such as AIPAC, and advocate a diplomatic resolution, as opposed to use of military force, of the Iranian nuclear problem. J Street has established itself as a moderate lobbying group, with a broad, holistic vision of Middle East disputes, dispelling the notion that the American-Jewish community is monolithic and blindly supports all Israeli policies.

By Syed Amir | The writer is a freelance contributor; http://dawn.com/2012/04/29/the-neocon-factor/


Delusional Milestone. Romans 10:1-3 Brethren, my heart's desire and prayer to God for Israel is, that they might be saved. For I bear them witness that they have a zeal for God, but not according to knowledge. For they being ... keep reading 


Popular posts from this blog

A historic moment in the Arab world

لحظة تاريخية في العالم العربي
As a democratic revolution led by tech-empowered young people sweeps the Arab world, Wadah Khanfar, Al Jazeera's director-general, shares a profoundly optimistic view of what's happening in Egypt, Tunisia, Libya and beyond. In the first talk posted online from the TED 2011 conference in California, Khanfar describes the powerful moment when people realised they could step out of their homes and ask for change. "كما ثورة ديمقراطية بقيادة الشباب التكنولوجيا ذات صلاحيات تجتاح العالم العربي ، وضاح خنفر ، الجزيرة المدير العام والأسهم وجهة نظر متفائلة بشكل كبير ما يحدث في مصر وتونس وليبيا وخارجها. وفي اول حديث له نشر على الانترنت من مؤتمر تيد 2011 في ولاية كاليفورنيا ، خنفر يصف لحظة قوية عند الناس أدركت أنها لا يمكن الخروج من منازلهم ونطلب من أجل التغيير."
http://www.ted.com/talks/wadah_khanfar_a_historic_moment_in_the_arab_world.html This talk was given on March 1, 2011 in Long Beach, California. TED 2011 is taking place between March 1 and Mar…

Corona & Attitude of Ulema of Pakistan - Point to Ponder

Faith is entirely a personal matter, which cannot be measured or quantified. Anyone who declares to believe in 6 Fundamentals and 5 Pillars of Islam is considered as a Muslim even if he lacks in practice.
 کرونا اور علماء پاکستان کا رویہ - لمحہ فکریہ:پاکستان اس وقت  تک ترقی نہیں کر سکتا  جب تک ہم اس جاہل ، مزہبی انتہا پسند طبقے کی اس زہنیت سےچھٹکارا  نہیں حاصل  کر لیتے جو مساجد ، مذہب کو کنٹرول کرکہ  زیادہ جاہل عوام کو گمراہ  کرتے ہیں۔  اسلام کو ان جہلا کے شکنجے بچایا جانا صروری ہے۔ .....[....]
We find many people looking "more Muslim" than others due to their outlook and activities in display, yet it's not a measuring  tool for their level of faith , which is only known to Allah. However they consider ONLY themselves  to be entitled to  exercise control on religion, which is contested because authenticity of any opinion on religious matter is conditional to the reference and authority from Holy Scripture. 
Allah has not authorized anyone to present their personal opinions …

SalaamOne NetWork

SalaamOneسلامisa nonprofit e-Forum to promote peace among humanity, through understanding and tolerance of religions, cultures & other human values.
علم اور افہام و تفہیم کے لئے ایک غیر منافع بخش ای فورم ہے. علم،انسانیت، مذہب، سائنس، سماج، ثقافت، اخلاقیات اورروحانیت امن کے لئے.اس فورم کو آفتاب خان،  آزاد محقق اور مصنف نے منظم کیا ہے. تحقیقی کام دس سال سے "ڈیفنس جرنل" میں تسلسل سے چھپ رہا ہے جو کہ بلاگز، ویب سائٹ، سوشل میڈیا، میگزین، ویڈیو چننل اور برقی کتابوں کی صورت میں دستیاب ہے.اس  نیٹ ورک  کو اب تک لاکھوں افراد وزٹ کر چکے ہیں-


The enterprise is managed by Aftab Khan, a freelance researcher and writer. His work and collection is available in the form of e-Books. articles, magazines, videos, posts at social media, blogs & video channels. The  Forum is open to  all the rational, peace loving  people of any faith, gender or race. You may join at social media , invite your friends and share the stuff. The NetWork It has been visited by over  Millions of people around th…