Available Now! (click cover)

America's Counter-Revolution
The Constitution Revisited

From the back cover:

This book challenges the assumption that the Constitution was a landmark in the struggle for liberty. Instead, Sheldon Richman argues, it was the product of a counter-revolution, a setback for the radicalism represented by America’s break with the British empire. Drawing on careful, credible historical scholarship and contemporary political analysis, Richman suggests that this counter-revolution was the work of conservatives who sought a nation of “power, consequence, and grandeur.” America’s Counter-Revolution makes a persuasive case that the Constitution was a victory not for liberty but for the agendas and interests of a militaristic, aristocratic, privilege-seeking ruling class.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

What Israel Really Fears about Iran

From the Washington Post:

A nuclear Iran could make it tougher for Israel to act against enemies closer to home, a senior Israeli military official said Tuesday, suggesting that regional fallout would be broad should Tehran achieve bomb making capabilities.

Military planning division chief Maj. Gen. Amir Eshel said if Tehran attains atomic weapons, that could constrain Israel from striking Iranian-backed Islamist groups in Lebanon and Gaza, Hezbollah and Hamas.

In other words, Israeli leaders don’t fear an attack. (Others have already said this, and American neocons agree.) Rather they fear that a nuclear Iran could deter Israel from asserting its will in the region. Hezbollah is a “threat” only if Israel again invades Lebanon. Hamas would cease being a threat if the Palestinians in Gaza and the West Bank (and Israel itself) were treated justly.

All of this presumes Iran is working toward acquiring a nuclear weapon (Israel has about 200), but to – to repeat—there is no evidence of this.

1 comment:

Jim Rose said...

what about tom schelling's point that nuclear weapons makes war unthinkable?

Traditionally, war was an alternative to diplomacy, and military strategy the science of victory.

In a world of nuclear weapons, military power is not so much exercised as threatened.

It is bargaining power, and the exploitation of this power, for good or evil, to preserve peace or to threaten war, is diplomacy — the diplomacy of violence.

Schelling tried to do terrible things like work out how not to blunder into wars and how to deter wars rather than have to actually fight them.

As Tom Schelling noted 50 years ago, baring universal brain surgery to eliminate all knowledge of nuclear weapons and how to make them, the challenge is arms control, not disarmament and how to have stable deterrence so there is no nuclear war.

Schelling’s unique contribution involved viewing strategic situations as bargaining processes.

Focusing on the stand-off between the United States and the Soviet Union, Schelling observed that the two superpowers had both shared and opposing interests.

Their shared interests involved avoiding a nuclear war, while their opposing interests concerned dominating the other. Conflict and cooperation became inseparable.

Iran and Israel are moving down that path if both have nuclear weapons.

people with nuclear weapons do not do crazy things when the other side has them too.