Monday, September 24, 2012

There Will Be No Neutral Country in the Region

If Iran is a rational actor who can be deterred once they have nuclear weapons, the Iranians would not irrationally make threats to attack American forces in Arab countries if Israel attacks Iran.

Iran is making threats to widen a war between themselves and Israel:

A senior commander in Iran's powerful Revolutionary Guard warned that Iran will target U.S. bases in the region in the event of war with Israel, raising the prospect of a broader conflict that would force other countries to get involved, Iranian state television reported Sunday.

This is irrational on several levels.

One, it multiplies Iran's enemies by making regional neutrals (even if hostile to Iran and willing to help a little covertly) into overt enemies by attacking them.

Two, it draws America into the war and we are the only power with the ability to really pound Iran into the dirt.

And three, as the above link also shows, by raising a threat to energy exports from the region, it gives nations even far away and normally deferential to Iran a motivation to join us in a mission to keep the Strait of Hormuz open.

I'm sorry, this whole rational actor thing is puzzling me. How rational are the Iranians? And you really want to count on that when the Iranians have nuclear missiles?