I’ve often said that a neoconservative is a special kind of caliber IQ – the neoconservative is the one who can in the same breath accuse Saddam Hussein and Bashar al-Assad of wickedness because of their use of chemical weapons while without missing a beat claiming to love the smell of napalm in the morning. Iran will be no different.
There’s a particular naivety in self-righteousness. The belief in one’s country’s moral correctness in spite of the evidence to the contrary is pressing. Nonetheless, it was NATO, against the advice of Iran, that bolstered Al-Qaeda. It was NATO, against the advice of Iran, that propped up the Taliban. It was NATO, against the advice of Iran, that sided with Saddam Hussein.
These aren’t minor lapses in judgment. Iran is likely a state-sponsor of terror. NATO countries are undoubtedly state-sponsors of terror – terror on a much more massive scale than Iran.
The folly in declaring war with Iran’s Revolutionary Guard is that Iranians themselves are likely to eliminate their own government. The pronouncements the counter-revolutionaries are giving are illegal, they are outright blasphemy according to Iranian law, they aren’t backing down. Women are dancing in the streets (which is illegal) as a protest. The Revolutionary Guard is about to be disposed of without resorting to war.
If war does break out, this will go down as one of the most pointless, bloodiest, America has ever waged. It would serve, in terms of national and international security, as one of the most counterproductive on record.
A war would radicalize the Iranians against the West for another 40 years. At present, the counter-revolutionaries tend to extremely liberal and support the West. A war would undoubtedly generate hostility. For one reason or another, neoconservatives pining for war have exempted from their minds the idea that bombing someone’s children will make them hate you.
National security would be sacrificed for this war, which ushers in the questions – why are we going to war?
Many companies would profit. Soldiers will be brought home in body bags. Children will die. Iranians would hate us for two generations. This would be a bloodbath worse than Iraq.
This is a conflict that would draw in Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Egypt, potentially Qatar, and potentially Israel opposing Iran. Iran would find allies in Syria, Iraq, the Houthi Rebels, and Hezbollah. If the Russians are onside with the Iranians Syria’s brutality will be exported throughout the Middle East.
There is no serious counter argument that suggests this state of affairs ameliorates our national security. This is a war where many will die so that others will be enriched. Arms dealers will lobby and then they will profit.
Donald Trump campaigned on the folly of pointless wars. He campaigned against the military industrial complex that feeds off of death and terror. This is precisely the war that could generate enthusiasm for his easily excitable base coming up to an election year.
Iran likewise needs to refuel patriotism among its people, else the Revolutionary Guard will be disposed of by its own people. We have two warring sides that have very little personal desire to back down.