Sunday, March 28, 2010
In America and Israel: Tick, Tock, Paul Rahe games Obama's trashing of U.S. relations with Israel and his implicit blessing of Iran's pursuit of nuclear weapons based on an all-too-familiar template.
There are two brute facts that are pertinent. First, like Hitler’s remilitarization of the Rhineland, Ahmadinejad’s acquisition of nuclear weapons and long-range missiles would profoundly alter the balance of power. Is there anyone who seriously thinks that, when it had a relatively free hand, the Islamic Republic of Iran would conduct its affairs in the manner of a saturated power? In assessing the significance of what is about to take place, one must keep in mind the strategic importance of the Persian Gulf and just how large a percentage of the oil that fuels the world economy is exported through that narrow body of water.Rahe concludes that Obama has abandoned that post and left it to the Israelis. Read it all.
The second brute fact is no less easy to discern: In matters such as the one that concerns us here, diplomacy is bound to be ineffectual if it is not backed by a credible threat that, if one’s requests are refused, one will resort to force.