This one is by ILSM…
Pressure on Iran, a CNN on line headline.
Defense Secretary Gates want to keep the pressure on Iran.
The US is already spending several trillion dollars to keep Iran from capitalizing on the vacuum we created in Iraq.
In te 1980’s we used Saddam to “contain” Iran. Then he became the threat du jour. Now it is back to Iran.
So, what kind of threat is Iran?
It has a GDP (wikipedia) of about $222B, mostly financed by selling oil. The closure of their nuclear program, at least their providing evidence that it is done with, shows they care about the oil business and not goring the customers or other suppliers. What sense is it for Iran to cut oil off? Their economy goes with the rest, as easily as they cut the flow some other player could cut their flow, too.
What is the issue if Iran gets half of Iraq’s oil production?
They increase their GDP by $50B and they get a bunch more people and structure to rebuild, we have not done much there.
The implied threat then is to Saudi Arabia’ roylas, and the Gulf States Imirs. The GDP of the Emirates is around $168B (with Qatar add $53B) and Saudi Arabia $350B and to get to the Sunnis the Iranian army would have to go through hundreds of miles of desert and put up with a high tech military who should without US help smash their logistics and destroy whatever Iranian formations sally forth.
What threat is Iran?
Could Iran encourage Hezbollah in Saudi? In the Emirates? Could the Iranians do an insurgency in these places? If the Iranians were a threat and were meaningful they would already be doing the insurgency thing. No, these places are populated by Arabs, who happen to be Sunni who care for neither care to support Farsi speaking Persians nor broach Shi’a inroads.
Iran is no threat. But the false fear of Iran is a cause for trillions more in war machine waste.
ILSM on the Iranian threat.