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In his speech before the American Israel Public Affairs Committee on Sunday, President Obama reiterated his commitment to keeping all options on the table in order to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon—including diplomacy.

"I have said that when it comes to preventing Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon, I will take no options off the table, and I mean what I say," said the President before thousands of activists congregated in the Mount Vernon Convention Center in Washington for AIPAC's annual conference.

But some experts question the wisdom of the President's remarks.

“It was simply irresponsible for President Obama to threaten to conduct diplomacy with Iran,” said Heritage Foundation analyst David Bryant. “As long as Obama rattles his olive branch at Iran, they'll never take his threats of military intervention seriously.”

Bryant's statement reflects the general outlook in the neoconservative community: threats of diplomacy are counterproductive because they make war less likely, not more so. Since these experts assess that the only solution to Iran's nuclear program is a military one, talk of possibly sitting down at a negotiating table and trying to come to a compromise like civilized human beings is a preposterous—and dangerous—notion.

“Look, if we talk to Iran, we may buy ourselves a few months, maybe a few years, before everyone remembers that Israel is holding 1.6 million people prisoner in Gaza and occupying lands in the West Bank,” said Noam Levy, spokesman for the Emergency Committee for Israel. “Then we'd have to acknowledge that Palestinians are human beings who have rights, and such a move would pose an existential threat to Israel as a Jewish state. But if we bomb Iran and make a little mess there, we'd probably be able to keep the heat off indefinitely.”

Maintaining Israeli hegemony in the region also requires abandoning the diplomatic option. “Consider a playground analogy. If you and another child both want to use the same swing, you don't try to come to an agreement to take turns with the kid. You beat the shit out of the bastard so he has to spend the rest of recess in the nurse's office, leaving you with the swing all to yourself.”

“It's like they say: use your fists, not your words.”

Howard Sherman, an analyst at the American Enterprise Institute, noted that the US has a strong history of regime change in Iran, and that such a course of action can only be successful if we don't talk to its leaders. “If we talk to Iran, we might realize that we can come to a negotiated agreement that addresses our concerns, thus obviating the need to resort to war. But regime change would be far more lucrative a venture for our elites. What's more, the US was able to overthrow Iran's democratically-elected Prime Minister in 1953 and maintain a model autocratic regime in its place for over twenty years. If we only tried again, I bet we could keep Iran in our grip for a good thirty, forty years at least.”

Overall, the sentiment is that President Obama lacks resolve in his policy toward Iran, according to presidential hopeful Newt Gingrich, who spoke before AIPAC earlier today. “Obama's insistence that diplomacy not be taken off the table demonstrates his lack of commitment to war with Iran.”

“I, on the other hand, promise to bomb Iran often and bomb it well should I assume the office of president.”

Gingrich was met with resounding applause from the audience.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Good speech. I'm tired of Israel dictating (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    perkinwarbek

    our mideast policy.

    Private health insurance: a protection racket without the protection.

    by rustypatina on Tue Mar 06, 2012 at 12:59:47 PM PST

  •  The blog may be a joke, but the situation is not: (4+ / 0-)

    Thousands of AIPAC activists are on the Hill right now lobbying for legislation that aims to pressure Obama to lower the threshold for war with Iran. The bills are S.Res. 380, sponsored by Sens. Joe Lieberman and Lindsay Graham, and H.Res. 568, sponsored by Rep. Ros-Lehtinen.

    Call your representatives NOW: 1-855-686-6927

    You can also email here: http://www.justforeignpolicy.org/...

    First, these bills assert that it should be US policy to prevent Iran, not from obtaining a nuclear weapon, but from developing a nuclear weapons capability--a vague condition that many experts believe Iran already meets.

    Second, the legislation seeks to exclude containment--not for a nuclear-armed Iran, but for a nuclear capable Iran. That means that it promotes going to war with Iran even if it does not intend to develop a nuclear weapon. It also supports going to war at the earliest convenience, since Iran is thought by some to be nuclear capable at this very moment. Essentially, this legislation is political authorization for war with Iran.

    Third, these bills attempt to sabotage diplomacy by promoting unrealistic conditions on a negotiated agreement, including the cessation of all uranium enrichment-related activities, and the discontinuation of Iran's ballistic missile program. Since it is well known that Iran would not accept such conditions, anyone who supports them does not, in fact, want a negotiated agreement to take place.

  •  He is just so like what John McCain said (2+ / 0-)

    he'll talk to the enemy.  This cannot stand.

  •  Yellowcake anyone? (0+ / 0-)

    I count on the Pres to slow down this phony crisis down to a crawl.

  •  one reason talk radio is so important- selling war (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    perkinwarbek

    it worked for iraq and i know that fucking chickenhawk hannity has been working that a lot.

    This is a list of 76 universities for Rush Limbaugh that endorse global warming denial, racism, sexism, and partisan lying by broadcasting sports on Limbaugh radio stations.

    by certainot on Tue Mar 06, 2012 at 01:38:35 PM PST

  •  Diplomacy? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    AoT

    what, I've heard all options are on the table, but that's just crazy talk.

    Ask your barista what her degree is in.

    by happymisanthropy on Tue Mar 06, 2012 at 01:51:37 PM PST

  •  This is what keeps me awake at night (0+ / 0-)

    March 19, 2003, the invasion of Iraq
    March 19, 2011, the bombing of Libya
    March 19, 2012, Iran ?

    Whether you agree with the intervention in Libya or not, the date was a fateful one. With March 19th coming up and all the beating of the drums of war, it is the stuff of nightmares.

    The war we should be having, the righteous war, is the war against environmental destruction but it appears humanity will not wake up to that fact in time.

    ❧To thine ownself be true

    by Agathena on Tue Mar 06, 2012 at 02:08:04 PM PST

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