Monday, February 20, 2012

Iran and nuclear weapons

As tensions are growing once again in the Middle East, it is generally thought that a nuclear armed Iran would be a nightmare. I do not think so. Instead of isolating the country further and fuelling anti-Western sentiments, the world community should end its sanctions and instead try to integrate Iran in the world economy. In particular, visa procedures should be streamlined and student exchanges promoted, things that will make young Iranians feel welcome in the world.

Meanwhile, the United States should deploy a range of tactical nuclear weapons to the Persian Gulf while maintaining its strategic nuclear deterrent and explicitly target Tehran with ICBMs. The United States should also state, in no uncertain terms, that if Iran ever uses its nuclear weapons, the country will be annihilated within hours. Knowing this, any attack on for instance Israel would be utterly suicidal for Iran. At the same time, the fact that Iran now has nuclear weapons will make it clear to the United States and others that they can never risk a pre-emptive strike. In essence, terror balance. But as tensions would diminish through increased economic and cultural integration of Iran, its days as a theocracy will hopefully be counted.

Do you agree? If not, why? Because of the assumption of rationality on behalf of all parties? Or for some other reason? I wilfully admit that my understanding of Iran is limited. At the same time, the current policies towards Iran do not seem to be working either. Clearly, a pre-emptive strike at this stage would be an obvious recipe for disaster as it would not mark the end but rather the beginning of a conflict that could possibly drag on for decades as a humiliated Iran would retaliate.

1 Comments:

Blogger Rasmus said...

Fareed offers an important history lesson and seems to take a similar stance to my own:

http://edition.cnn.com/video/?hpt=hp_t1#/video/world/2012/02/19/gps-fareeds-take-iran.cnn

4:07 pm  

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