February 23, 2007

THE MOST POWERFUL MAN ON EARTH...TODAY:

Ahmadinejad and Russian Roulette (Amir Taheri, 23/02/2007, Asharaq Alawsat)

Over the past quarter of a century, the Khomeinist regime has had the prudence not to behave like suicidal adolescents. When faced with the risk of hitting something hard, it has always retreated. In 1988, Khomeini accepted a humiliating ceasefire with Iraq when he realized that the Americans would punish him if he refused. Ten years later, Khamenehi, decided to eat humble pie when the Taliban killed dozens of Iranians, including eight diplomats. He had no stomach for a fight against elements even madder than the mullahs.

The key question now is whether the Khomeinist regime, which has always played chess, has decided to play Russian roulette.

The perceived political weakness of the United States, and the expectation that the Democrats would seek a strategic retreat, may have persuaded the Khomeinist leadership that Ahmadinejad may be right after all: the Islamic Republic can pursue a hegemonic strategy with no fear of hitting something hard.

Ahmadinejad, reported to watch a lot of CNN, has seen the gunboats sail in. But he has also seen Nancy Pelosi, Jack Murtha, Barrack Obama, and other American luminaries such as Michael Moore, Noam Chomsky and Jane Fonda who would rather see Bush destroyed than the mullahs restrained. The American gunboat ballet does not impress the radicals in the ascendancy in Tehran. And that is bad news for all concerned, above all the people of the region.


As the Democrats defeat on even a non-binding resolution demonstrated, the President's weakness is largely imaginary. However, since our foreign enemies share the delusion with his domestic foes, a flashy shift in the storyline would be devastating for both. This gives Joe Lieberman a truly unprecedented opportunity because by crossing the Senate aisle and restoring control to the president's party he would deal a crushing blow to al Qaeda, the Ba'athists, Mahmoud Ahmedinejad, the French, etc. Joementum is a legitimate WMD.

Posted by Orrin Judd at February 23, 2007 9:43 AM
Comments

Any prudent foreign government needs to crack open a history book and see what America can and will do when sufficiently riled. They only need to Google up things like "trail of tears", "Sioux", and "smallpox blankets".

America is like a sleeping bull dog being tormented by a toddler. He ignores the provocations up to a certain point---and then bites your face off.

Posted by: ray at February 23, 2007 1:37 PM

I still expect Holy Joe to do a Moynihan and keep the Dems in power the whole two years. (Has Tim Johnson cast a vote this session?)

Posted by: Raoul Ortega at February 23, 2007 2:03 PM

They see Jimmy Carter.

Posted by: h-man at February 23, 2007 2:14 PM

Bulldog?? They remember Jimmy Carter and think of a pug

Posted by: h-man at February 23, 2007 2:16 PM

FWIW, I read a commenter today in Ms. Althouse's blog who claims that the organizing resolutions for this Congress do not include a Jefford's clause that would allow the Senate to be reorganized if Slow Joe bolts to the other side.

Posted by: Rick T. at February 23, 2007 2:16 PM

FWIW, I read a commenter today in Ms. Althouse's blog who claims that the organizing resolutions for this Congress do not include a Jefford's clause that would allow the Senate to be reorganized if Slow Joe bolts to the other side.

Posted by: Rick T. at February 23, 2007 2:17 PM

Rick: I heard McConnell state a few months ago that he wasn't going to insist on explicitly spelling out that committees, etc., would switch should control flip because the public wouldn't stand for a minority party being in control. Given the current state of political discourse and the MSM, it makes one wonder what color the sky is on his planet, doesn't it?

One would certainly like to think that a party with 48 functional members plus 1 "independent" wouldn't be in charge of one with 49 members plus 1 "independent" but that would be breathtakingly naive.

Posted by: b at February 23, 2007 2:26 PM
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