Democrats & Liberals Archives

Who Gets Nuclear Power?

Who gets nuclear power and who does not? Who decides? The first is the million dollar question. The second seems to be the United States. However the decision making on who can and can not have nuclear power seems almost whimsical.

Now North Korea can't have nuclear power because they have the stated goal of nuclear weapons. Of course Pakistan, India, and China have both nuclear power and nuclear weapons, but that is OK. In fact, the U.S. has a pact to assist India with its nuclear power.

Iran has civilian nuclear plants and wants to expand them, but it "can't" because the U.S. (and perhaps others) are saying they will use the material to refine for nuclear weapons. This has meandered on to the point that the U.S. is citing a "deal with U.N. members to punish Iraq." Actually, there are suggestions once again that the U.S. is preparing to attack Iran. Bush has "sent the message" that the U.S. won't "live with" a nuclear Korea."

But quietly the word slips out that Egypt is restarting its nuclear program after shutting down in the wake of Chernobyl. Somewhat surprisingly, the U.S. has offered to help with the effort.

If you are shaking your head, then I agree. What is going on here. On September 20th, the NY Times discusses the Egyptian decision as follows:

"Gamal Mubarak, the son of Egypt's president, has proposed that his country pursue nuclear energy in a speech to the nation's political elite, drawing strong applause while raising expectations that Mubarak is being positioned to replace his father as president. The carefully crafted political speech Tuesday raised the prospect of two potentially embarrassing developments for the White House at a time when the region is awash in crisis: a nuclear program in Egypt, recipient of about $2 billion a year in military and development aid from the United States, and Mubarak succeeding his father, Hosni Mubarak, as president without substantial political challenge. Simply raising the topic of Egypt's nuclear ambitions at a time of heightened tensions over Iran's nuclear activity was received as a calculated effort to raise the younger Mubarak's profile and to build public support through a show of defiance toward Washington, political analysts and foreign affairs experts said."

If this was a "defiant" move, then why did the Bush administration embrace it with an offer of assistance? What happened to the idea of a "democratic" Middle East? Egypt doesn't quite count as a democratic government despite the move in 2005 to have more than one candidate for president (CIA, World Factbook). Perhaps it has something to do with Egypt's resources ("petroleum, natural gas, iron ore, phosphates, manganese, limestone, gypsum, talc, asbestos, lead, zinc") and geography ("controls Sinai Peninsula, only land bridge between Africa and remainder of Eastern Hemisphere; controls Suez Canal, a sea link between Indian Ocean and Mediterranean Sea") (CIA, World Factbook). Or perhaps it is as simple as the Mubaraks (father and son) being seen as "Pro-western" (CRS, 2001) and of "assistance" in the U.S. "war on terrorism."

+++
Interesting Tid-bits
According to Terrorism Project, Egypt has two active "terrorist" organizations. "Al-Jihad a.k.a Egyptian Islamic Jihad, Jihad Group, Islamic Jihad" which is suspected to have close links to al Qaeda and operations in "Yemen, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Sudan, Lebanon, and the United Kingdom" and suspected funding from Iran. The other is "Al-Gama'a al-Islamiyya (Islamic Group, IG)" is assumed to be only aimed at the overthrow of the Egyptian government.

Egypt is not on the State Department's list of State Sponsors of Terrorism. That list only includes Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Sudan, and Syria (Libya and South Yemen have been removed). There are also "havens" and "infestations" of terrorism listed by the Council on Foreign Relations. These include Pakistan, Somalia, Iraq, and the Palestinian Authority. Interestingly, Lebanon is not on any of these lists despite the presence of Hizbullah.

FAS Intelligence Resource Program: Terrorism: Background and Threat Assessments

National Strategy for Combating Terrorism

Version with active link to World Factbook will not publish, so here is the URL https://www.cia.gov/cia/publications/factbook/geos/eg.html

Posted by Rowan Wolf at October 7, 2006 2:08 PM
Comments
Comment #186890

Iran CAN have nuclear power. Nothing the U.S., UN or Europeans have said will prohibit that. They can have nuclear power within the reasonable safeguards other nations follow.

The U.S. has offered to help Iran develop peaceful nuclear power. The Iranians understand that. Don’t fall for their disinformation.

Posted by: Jack at October 7, 2006 2:50 PM
Comment #186891

Yes, as Jack says, the problem isn’t Iran wanting nuclear power plants. The West has offered to help. The problem is that we don’t trust Iran for some very good reasons, not the least of which is that it lied about its nuclear projects for many years.

We have very legitimate reasons not to approve of our president, but let’s not whitewash other nations.

Posted by: Trent at October 7, 2006 3:03 PM
Comment #186895

Rowan Wolf,

Jack pretty much said it. You cite Pakistan, India, and China for having nuclear weapons. China was given them by the Soviets, not much we could do there. India most likely had nuclear weapons for some time, but didn’t test them until Clinton was in office. Pakistan developed their nukes under the eyes of the Clinton administration, as did North Korea using reactors we gave them under Clinton.

We support India because they are a growing economic power, a potentially vast market, a competitor for oil, and a potentially valuable ally and the only nation that has a shot against China based on manpower. Egypt is also a valuable ally for the reasons you cited in your post. Also, they don’t finance terrorism and threaten us and our allies with nukes. Personally, I think the US needs to make it very clear that any nuclear weapons used by terrorists against the US will result in an immediate and massive retaliation against both Iran and North Korea. Its not like we don’t have more than enough weapons to do it, and I think that only the threat of such action will ensure they keep them under a tight leash if they do have them.

Posted by: 1LT B at October 7, 2006 3:40 PM
Comment #186898

There you go again its all Clintons fault.

Posted by: Jeff at October 7, 2006 4:11 PM
Comment #186900

The nuclear bomb genie has long since left his bottle. It is a practice in futility to attempt to keep *any* nation from attaining The Bomb. We have to approach it from another direction. MAD worked and is still working. As 1LT B says, the assurance of massive and final retaliation is the only thing that might stay the Iranians’ hands. Everyone knows this. To watch the Bush administration bluster and rattle their sabre at Iran is embarassing. So what if the little Iranian Hitler shakes his fist at the US? Until he acts, we should do nothing. He can lie to the world but the world knows it. He has no wedge to blackmail us or the aligned nations unless we give him one. A pre-emptive strike would be that wedge. North Korea included. Until these idiots go on the offensive, we can afford to do nothing except condemn the stated and unstated intentions of these two megalomaniacs. If this means standing by and taking the first hit, then so be it. Personally, I think they are both bluffing.

In the meantime, if they want nuclear power for the express purpose of generating energy, then we should not stand in the way.

Posted by: Charles Adams at October 7, 2006 4:26 PM
Comment #186904

Charles,

I’ll be happy to inform all the survivors of an Iranian nuclear weapon attack, that it was OK, by you. It’s OK to let a madman have a nuclear weapon??? It’s OK to let him use it first??? You make a dangerous and bonehead argument.

keith

Posted by: keith at October 7, 2006 5:00 PM
Comment #186906

Charles
If you support letting Iran throw the first nuke then are you also happy the US waited to invade Afghanistan and attack al Qaeda until AFTER they killed 3,000 of our citizens. What on earth are you thinking? Iran for one is controlled by religious zealots who prefer martyrdom to life. Not the sort of people I would trust to follow MAD. North Korea would, but I doubt Iran would. Keith makes a good point. When Iran puts a suitcase nuke by the Washington Monument, wipes out our government and everything goes down the tubes, well, it was OK by you as long as we nuke them back and wipe out a few million of their citizens. O wait we won’t have a government to order a retaliatory strike.

Or they could put a nuke in one of THEIR cities, detonate it then blame it on the US. Having Amedinajad there the day before would make it look like an attempt on his life…charred corpses of women and children everywhere…a few good TV shots of weeping parents ought to do a pretty good job of killing our already bleeding world reputation.

Posted by: Silima at October 7, 2006 5:20 PM
Comment #186907

Silma,

“….wipes out our government and everything goes down the tubes,”

It hasn’t?

Posted by: Rocky at October 7, 2006 5:27 PM
Comment #186909

Keith,

My point is there is nothing we can do about the fact that Iran either now or in the future will have a nuclear device. This is a foregone conclusion. The only thing we can do is convince Iran not to use the device. I will not stand by and let our government turn Iran into a glass factory without proper provocation. And that proper provocation has to be first use. When we are talking about nuclear exchanges, we must take the high road. Besides, he is mad not stupid.

And what you advocate is genocide. Believe me, I’ve thought the same thing you’re thinking.

Silima,

First of all, I have full faith and confidence that our Navy and NORAD will launch the retaliatory strike with or without permission. I have no doubt that if such a scenario were to happen we would not just “kill a few million” Iranians — the entire region would be radioactive for 10,000 years.

Secondly, your self-inflicted holocost scenario is only plausible because of our entertainment of a pre-emptive nuclear strike. At this point, we have already opened ourselves to that blackmail.

Look, there is not a thing any of us can do to prevent terrorists from detonating a nuclear device on our soil. The only rational stance to this is assuring the enemy, and the world, of two things:
1. Overwhelming and absolute destruction in response, and
2. Never, ever commit a nuclear first strike; don’t even threaten it.

It’s kinda like gun etiquette: never point a gun at someone unless you intend to shoot him.

Posted by: Charles Adams at October 7, 2006 6:16 PM
Comment #186913

“My point is there is nothing we can do about the fact that Iran either now or in the future will have a nuclear device.”

The key to preventing the use of a nuclear device is to make sure every nation that has them has too much to lose. Succesfull, prosperous nations don’t dare fire off their nukes. Segregated, shunned, embargoed, otherwise powerless nations just might.
What prevented nuke war between us and the USSR was the fact that we both wanted to live and had a lot to lose.

Posted by: Observer at October 7, 2006 9:00 PM
Comment #186922

Rowan,

As much as it pains me to say so I must agree with Jack. Iran’s had numerous offers to aid them in the development of peaceful nuclear technology and Ahminijad refuses to cooperate. He insists that Israel has no right to exist.

BUT, where’s the diplomacy? Somehow GWB and his bunch of dildos think that diplomacy is an indication of weakness. Holy crap, diplomacy can save lives and prevent wars. Yes, talk is cheap, much cheaper than human life.

I’m just waiting for the October surprise. I know Bush has one up his sleeve. I just hope someone stops him.

KansasDem
ps: excuse my language but I fear the Bush October surprise and I feel it’s neccessary.

Posted by: KansasDem at October 7, 2006 10:54 PM
Comment #186923

Observer,

Damn good points! Dead on.

KD

Posted by: KansasDem at October 7, 2006 10:57 PM
Comment #186924

Rocky’s back!

The right doesn’t stand a chance.

Welcome back.

KD

Posted by: KansasDem at October 7, 2006 11:00 PM
Comment #186925

The likeliehood of Iran attacking the US mainland with a nuclear weapon is almost nil. They’re light years from being able to build, test and potentialy deliver ICBMs, and the so-called “suitcase bomb” is pretty much an element of science fiction, if you know anything about the level of techological sophistication an effective one would require. Even a “suitcase” nuclear bomb weighing a hundred pounds would produce an explosion that was maybe twice as powerful as the Oklahoma city bomb. Scary, but Iranian terrorists determined to strike the US would get way more bang for their buck mixing a bomb out of cheap fertilizer than spending millions of bucks building and smuggling something into the US which then might not even work. And which would also guarantee that Iran was turned into a parking lot within 24 hours.

No, the danger is that a nulcear Iran will pose an unacceptable threat to Israel, and nuclear war becomes a probability rather than a possibility in the Middle East.

It’s irrelevant to demand that the US not strike first. We’re not going to be struck at all. Israel, however, is much smaller and more vulnerable and does not have the luxury of just waiting around for a first strike.

It’s the same situation with North Korea. They’re not going to have the ability to strike us, but Japan, South Korea and the rest of Asia cannot live with that level of risk posed by the insane leaders of rogue regimes.

Posted by: Pilsner at October 7, 2006 11:05 PM
Comment #186930

“The likeliehood of Iran attacking the US mainland with a nuclear weapon is almost nil.”

Pilsner,

I agree. Now, what’s the chance that Bush would bomb Iran? You know several months ago “leakers” from the Pentagon said Bush basically had to be “slapped down” regarding the use of nukes against Iran?

Our greatest threat to life and limb is the nit-wit in the White House. It’s just too sad that you can’t or won’t see that.

KansasDem

Posted by: KansasDem at October 7, 2006 11:48 PM
Comment #186933

KansasDem, I’m bewildered by your comments about what I can’t or won’t see regarding issues I wasn’t even discussing.

A day is coming when George Bush will no longer be in the White House, and hopefully then you’ll come to realize that the world and its problems do not start with, end with, or revolve around George Bush. He is just an expression of our times. A man who just happens to be the person that a majority of Americans have twice now chosen to represent their wishes.

This notion that some comic book villain named George Bush is “our greatest threat to life and limb” is insane. George Bush has not vowed to destroy America. He does not crash airplanes into American cities or send sucicide bombers to kill Americans.

I can understand an argument, even if I don’t agree, to the effect that George Bush is ineffective or goes too far in his efforts to combat those trying to kill us, but where you’re coming from is just blind, partisan rancor

Bush cannot, because he is President of the United States, “be slapped down by the Pentagon.” The Pentagon can advise him, but they’ll not only be slapped down but slapped in chains if they refuse to do exactly what he tells him. If Bush doesn’t bomb Iran, it’s because he himself does not consider that the wisest course of action.

Posted by: Pilsner at October 8, 2006 12:18 AM
Comment #186940

“I’m bewildered”

IMO Pilsner you needn’t say anymore than that. Your own statements of what you consider fact make my point. I won’t waste my time on you anymore than I would on Sean Hannity or Ann Coulter.

For those that care to examine facts please read this:

Foley Helped Bush Disenfranchise Florida Black Voters

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/earl-ofari-hutchinson/foley-helped-bush-disenfr_b_31193.html

I hadn’t actually thought about the Florida connection but it sounds reasonable. Whether or not it’s truthful I don’t know, I’ll leave that to everyone’s personal discretion.

KD

Posted by: KansasDem at October 8, 2006 12:46 AM
Comment #186948

KansasDem, what fact—even a single one that I supposedly rely on—do you dispute? You haven’t even bothered to mention what you disagree with, factual or otherwise, before launching into this totally irrelevant and embarrassing rant about the supposed disenfranchisment of black voters in Florida. What in god’s name does that have to with Iran?

Ridiculous.

Posted by: Pilsner at October 8, 2006 1:43 AM
Comment #186955

Observer,

You make a good point about diplomacy. Were I Bush, I would offer Iran full diplomatic recognition and an end to sanctions in return for a fully accountable nuclear program. In some ways, Iran is like a child who breaks a vase to get mommy’s attention. One of the things they crave is legitimacy, so we should offer it to them. This should be done with the following caveats:
1. Their program must be completely accountable, inspectors must be able to see everything at any time and verify that fuel is not being used for weapons production.
2. It should also be clearly stated that any deviation from their accountability will result in immediate sanctions, and not just from the US.
3. Iran should publically renounce nuclear weapons and possibly recognize the state of Israel. I would like to see the later happen, but I’m not willing to make it a complete sticking point. At the least, they should renounce violence against Israel.

If we were to do this, it would demonstrate that we’re not just going through the motions of diplomacy. Also, by offering them everything they’ve been asking for, we put them in a difficult position. If they really do want nuclear power just for electricity, they would have almost no choice but to agree. Its easy for Russia or China to point to the big mean US when we offer them nothing. It becomes far more difficult if we give them a substatiative offer. Beyond this, we’ve demostrated that we’re operating in good faith, and if they refuse, they basically announce that they’re interested only in weapons.

A similar approach might work for North Korea. Once again, it would put the rest of the world in a bad position to go against us if we give a serious and substantial offer.

Posted by: 1LT B at October 8, 2006 2:34 AM
Comment #186965

Pilsner:

A man who just happens to be the person that a majority of Americans have twice now chosen to represent their wishes.

A majority of Americans did not elect GWB twice. Not even a majority of Americans in either 2000 or 2004.

The purpose of the Constitution is to protect every American from the tyranny of the ballot box. Pure democracy is bad government. A constitutional democracy is not quite as bad. A constitutional democractic republic is a little better and is as good a government as we will ever probably ever see in the universe of humans.

BTW, GWB can be “slapped down” by the Congress and the Courts. Congress has utterly failed in this responsibility and the Courts have performed only marginally better. The danger posed by GWB is one permitted by the Congress & the Courts.

The Constitution wisely limits the executive from acting on its own. Unfortunately, when the legislative and/or judicial branches of government fail in their responsibilities, you end up in the kind of mess in which we are currently. By constitutional design, the executive is the weakest of the three branches… the executive is to follow (obey) the laws as passed by Congress and subsequently determined as constitutional by the Courts. Contrary to the GWB crowd’s assertion of inherent and unitary executive powers, the executive is not the superior branch of our government and the president has no powers except those granted by law. Even the president’s commander-in-chief powers are properly limited by Congress and the Courts.

Posted by: fivereflections@yahoo.com at October 8, 2006 8:16 AM
Comment #186966
A majority of Americans did not elect GWB twice. Not even a majority of Americans in either 2000 or 2004.

This should read: Not even a majority of Americans VOTED in either 2000 or 2004.

Posted by: fivereflections@yahoo.com at October 8, 2006 8:18 AM
Comment #186979

Let’s not forget that the root of the problems in the Middle East is the confrontations between Israel and Palestine. If we the United States can’t be an honest broker for peace between these people, perhaps some other countries could. North Korea is no real threat. I mean what are they going to do, bomb Russia, China, South Korea, Japan. There is no win for them in any of those situations. Iran has the right to have Nuclear Power Plants, just like any other nation that has acquired the technology. The problem is that if GWB’s administation attempted to show proof that Iran was in the process of building a nuclear weapon, who would believe them. I wouldn’t.

Posted by: Harold at October 8, 2006 10:35 AM
Comment #186984

Harold,

Have you ever been to Korea? I have, and the threat from North Korea is real. While they probably can’t fit one of their nukes (if they even have them) into a package that could be used as an effective weapon, they have hundreds of artillery pieces capable of ranging Seoul, a city of 10 million people. The damage they could potentially do to South Korea by shelling Seoul with regular shells, to say nothing of chemical weapons, would be catastrophic. They could also launch rockets into Japan, again potentially devestating a valuable ally. In addition, North Korea has a huge army, and while it is technologically backwards, quantity has a quality all its own. While North Korea could never defeat South Korea, they can create incredible hardships for a valuable ally and possibly instigate a wider war and cause massive economic problems for our allies and us.

Your comments on Bush are ridiculous. What will convince you about the nature of the Iranian threat, a nuke going off in NYC? Get over the Bush hatred and smell the coffee. Iran has the right to have nuclear power, but they also need to be accountable, something they have failed to do with gusto for years now.

Posted by: 1LT B at October 8, 2006 11:16 AM
Comment #186992

Pilsner,

That was merely an oops. It was intended for the next thread. It was only an oops, no more, no less.

Hardly embarrassing or ridiculous and certainly lacking the quality of a rant.

My previous post was simply me quoting you and posing a question based on revelations exposed by Seymour Hersh months ago.

http://www.cnn.com/2006/POLITICS/04/10/hersh.access/index.html

Quoting Hersh: “I’m saying that, if this isn’t walked back and if the president isn’t told that you cannot do it — and once the chairman of the Joint Chiefs or some senior members of the military say to the president, let’s get this nuclear option off the table, it will be taken off. He will not defy the military in a formal report. Unless something specific is told to the White House that you’ve got to drop this dream of a nuclear option — and that’s exactly the issue I’m talking about — people have said to me that they would resign.”

KansasDem

Posted by: KansasDem at October 8, 2006 12:17 PM
Comment #187025

The reason we are helping India with there nuclear program is because they did not threaten to blow us off the face of the Earth.

Posted by: J-Dog at October 8, 2006 5:36 PM
Comment #187041

Anyone should be able to develop nuclear power for generation of electricity and other non-weapons related matters. No one, including us should possess or be able to develop nuclear weapons.

The irony is that the one country in the world that has the capability of insuring others don’t use their nuclear weapons is the only country to actually use them.

We must rid the world of nuclear weapons. The late great Reverend William Sloane Coffin said it best: “Just as a fat person cannot talk persuasively to a skinny one about the virtues of not overeating, so nuclear powers cannont convince non-nuclear ones to renounce access to nuclear weapons - not until the nuclear powers themselves start seriously to disarm. Either they disarm or they must face the fact that any nation in the world that wants nuclear weapons eventually will get them. Either the world becomes nuclear free or the whole planet becomes a nuclear porcupine.”

Iran should never possess nuclear weapons, but then again, neither should the US, Russia, Britain, France, Israel, India, Pakistan, China, or any other. How can South Africa, a country that only a few years ago enforced an unconsciounable apartheid against the majority of their people have the wisdom to dismantle and destroy their nuclear arsenal and the “civilized” world not follow-suit?

There are two jobs in my opinion for the United Nations. One is attempting to alleviate hunger, poverty and disease, and the other is to eliminate the production, sale and possession of nuclear weapons.

Let’s figure out a way to get these weapons consigned to the dust-bin of history. What do you think it would take to convince Kim Jung Ill, Pervez Musharaff, Tony Blair to give up their weapons? What would it take for us to do the same?

Posted by: Dennis at October 8, 2006 9:01 PM
Comment #187067

Supposing the Left does take charge of Congress in 2006 and even the White House in 2008. Situations like Iran will be intersting because of commenters like KansasDem who refuse to discuss Iran. Unfortunately that type of attitude is representative of the Left. The last time the Left had the White House they scurried through a quick non-proliferation signing from North Korea … only to let them build nukes in the next few years. Iran would be no different. Some piece of paper would be signed, Dems and liberals all over the country would pat themselves on the back congratulating their excellent diplomatic skills … and then somewhere, oh, say 2011, Iran will have nuclear weapons and will be threatening tests. Sound familiar?

GWB and Republicans are obviously far from perfect but at least they take serious situations seriously and will force verification of any signatures on a 25 cent piece of paper.

So if you think Iran is the definite threat that it is, and despite disagreements with the President you think all this “Bush is Hitler”, “Bush is the devil” stuff is as moronic and childish as it is, then vote Republican in November. Because, at the end of the day, neither the Right nor the Left will be able to destroy America. Large Middle America just won’t let that happen. So vote for the Party that doesn’t think the worst evil in the world exists right here in the USA.

Thank you for your time.

Posted by: NobleNation at October 9, 2006 12:36 AM
Comment #187079
Bush has “sent the message” that the U.S. won’t “live with” a nuclear Korea.

Today it seems North Korea just joined the “nukular” powers. But let’s focus on Iran, afterall it’s farer to US land than NK…

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at October 9, 2006 7:52 AM
Comment #187083

I think the US has very little control on those who want to become nuclear powers. This all started with the moronic “axis of evil” speech… and escalated from there.

This administration has completely failed at managing any of the three “Axis of Evil.” Damn, these morons suck. Invade Iraq = Fiasco. Ignore N Korea = Fiasco. Bitch at Iran = Fiasco.

At least they’re consistent.

Posted by: tony at October 9, 2006 8:09 AM
Comment #187085

Keith,

I’ll be happy to inform all the survivors of an Iranian nuclear weapon attack, that it was OK, by you. It’s OK to let a madman have a nuclear weapon??? It’s OK to let him use it first??? You make a dangerous and bonehead argument.

And still so far only ONE nation was fool enough to actually use nukes on another nation. Two times.
And the attacked nation didn’t have even nukes!

Since, how many “nukular” attacks?
ZERO, to parrot SicilianEagle lingua.

It’s OK to let anyone, madman or not, have a nuclear weapon??? It’s OK to let them, madmen or not, use it first??? Did Truman was a madman??? Did US was mad in 1945?
Does the present or future leader to use nukes *first* will be automatically a madman?
What if it’s US who nukes Iran *first*?
Or Israel nuking Iran *first*?
Or US nuking North Korea *first*?

Nukes usage *alone* make a dangerous and bonehead argument far more than any posters here.

Anyway, nukes are there and you could bet they won’t go away ever (except all of them at the same time). And, most probably, the world is running to MADness, pun intented.
We opened the pandora-box. Now we must deal with it. One way is to fight for peace, reducing conflicts overall risk, when the other way is to fight for aiming or staying #1 in a doomed weapons race.

Your call.

PS: yeah-ha, let’s play at DefCon level 1.

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at October 9, 2006 8:12 AM
Comment #187103

Phillippe: The U.S.’s use of atomic weapons to end WWII is of no relevance to the current discussion. Nor, is it helpful to incite Cold War-style hysteria. Let’s not cite history of which we know nothing.

Posted by: Dr. Poshek at October 9, 2006 10:18 AM
Comment #187108

Phillipe,
The American use of nuclear weapons saved hundreds of thousands of American lives and millions of Japanese lives. Yes, it killed hundreds of thousands of Japanese, but many times more would have died in a doomed resistance to the inevitable American invasion of the Japanese home islands. Also, we had originally planned their use against Germany. Lets pretend that the Nazi winter offensive through the Ardennes had been successful. Would you condemn the US if we had used nukes to end the war in Europe or would you have been happier to see more French, German, British, American, and Russian soldiers killed?
As far as no nuclear attacks since then go, since you are familiar with MAD, why don’t you come up with a better solution? It’s a sad fact, but it was only nuclear weapons that prevented a massive war between NATO and the Warsaw Pact. Nukes are cheap compared to the numbers of ships and divisions a nation would have to field to achieve the same deterrent effect. The economic boom that followed the initial rebuilding of Western Europe would not have been possible if France and the rest of Western Europe had to maintain armies big enough to deter the Soviets.
North Korea and Iran are both dangerous states to world security. Iran actively supports terrorist operations throughout the Middle East and has threatened Israel. North Korea threatens South Korea and Japan. For them to gain nukes with the rocket technology to allow them to strike targets around the world is unacceptable. I fail to understand why you would have our nations just blindly trust lunatics who have said they want us all dead.
Since you bring up the arms race, it might interest you to know that the US is either on the brink of or already has nuclear primacy, ie the ability to hit any nation with a first strike that would eliminate all of its weapons and make a counterstrike impossible. There is no way to win an arms race with nuclear weapons except to ensure that there is no way to be attacked without having enough weapons to wipe out your enemy. Nuclear weapons will never go away unless we think up something even more destructive. Faced with this reality, it is not only prudent but required of nations to ensure that we try to limit conflicts and make sure that the costs of such conflicts are such that no one will ever use these weapons.

Posted by: 1LT B at October 9, 2006 10:46 AM
Comment #187130

Why do liberals support other countries developing nuclear weapons…countries that oppose the US. And then they turn around and claim they don’t when you nail them on the issue? Clearly they would lose votes if they openly called for all nations who oppose the US to build nukes, but they support it with every bit of propaganda they spew on the issue.

Rowans article is the perfect example of that game. Here we have N. Korea and Iran trying to develop nuclear bombs and we have Rowan condemning the US for trying to stop them as if they only wanted peaceful nuclear power. While at the same time mixing in those who want nuclear power instead of nuclear bombs just to confuse the measure. And yes, we do have some inconsistancies in our policies in that we do not inhibt as strongly those nations who are democratic and peaceful.

In my opinion, the radical left supports these rogue nations which want bombs from a propaganda view point because Progressive liberals the world over see the greatest “threat” to world peace to be the US. They view any power, no matter how evil, that opposes the US as a power they can use for propaganda purposes. A sort of allie they don’t admit to in their war to bring down Christian Capitialist America and replace it with an amoral, more socialist and appeasement-minded America.

Your piece here did not confuse me, Rowan. I still know the difference between a good nation and a rogue nation. I still know it’s a bad thing to stand by and allow rogue nations to build nuclear weapons. And I still think the US should take tough stands including the use of force to forestall the spread of nuke weapons because talk does not work. Clinton proved that. Black Mail payemets does not work, Clinton proved that. And more talk and multi national talk does not work, Bush proved that.

Where is this going folks? What is the spreading of nuclear weapons around the globe leading up to? Can you do the math? I think we all know what will happen some day, I hope I’m not alive the day New York City, LA, San Diago, or Washington evaporate in a flash, the world economy is destroyed, our currency collapses to zero value, and we have no idea which rogue state to blast back in retaliation as our civilization crumbles.

That’s the day that world will agree to stop the spread of nukes, to send in troops against any state that trys to develop them, that’s the day. And I don’t want to be alive when that day finaly, inevitably comes. Until then America is like the little dutch boy sticking fingers in holes in the dick. We can’t even get our own political parties to agree that’s a job we should be doing no matter how much force we have to apply to get the job done. The day we all agree on how much force should be applied, will be a day too late.

Posted by: Stephen at October 9, 2006 11:50 AM
Comment #187133

Whoops, sorry about that folks. I meant so say Dike not Dick in the previous post! LAUGH.

Posted by: Stephen at October 9, 2006 11:54 AM
Comment #187140

Congradulations to all those who have fought George Bush on every issue concerning the Security of The United States of America.Your stratigy has paid off in spades.You have weakened the U.S. to a point where no one will take us serious again.To the hundreds of thousands that will probily Die because of your efforts My Heart bleeds for you and the American People.We are no longer a Super Power but a Super Pacifier that will prove to be the Down fall of America.Thank you Mr. Kerry,Mr. murtha,Mrs.Polosi and last but not least The New York Times and all other Liberal Media.

Posted by: PETRO at October 9, 2006 12:07 PM
Comment #187141

Dr. Poshek, 1LT B,

First, my point is not about US’s A-bombs used in 1945 on Hiroshima and Nagazaki being a bad or good choice. My point is, so far, only US did used nukes. That’s a fact, right.

A fact which is revelant to a discussion about nuclear weapons possible usage. Don’t you look at known statistics when you try to compute probilities?

These statistics available today doesn’t means that only US could be the next nation to use it. It means that since 1945, no other nations did it. And, still, since 1945 a few nations get nuclear weapons. The last one being, it seems, North Korean.
Several nations are now nuclear powers. Not all are democratic nations (in fact, less and less). Some of them are dictatorships. Since 1945, yet, none of them break the MAD doctrine. This doctrine doesn’t only work during Cold War, between Western and Soviets. This doctrine is still working with China, India, Israel, Pakistan.
Why can’t it work with North Korea?

Because they’ve a mad dictator?
Didn’t USSR was ruled for decades by ones of the worst? Since when China is an peacefull, open and democratic nuclear nation?

Some nuclear powers leaders are maybe mad, but they’re not stupid. Otherwise, MAD doctrine would have been proved flawed long ago…

1LT B,

Lets pretend that the Nazi winter offensive through the Ardennes had been successful. Would you condemn the US if we had used nukes to end the war in Europe or would you have been happier to see more French, German, British, American, and Russian soldiers killed?

Japan is an island. Germany is not. Having to live side by side with a neighboor that you, with your allied, had nuked their cities, could have been far harder. What look like a short term gain could be in the longer term very counter-productive.
We all have suffered quite similar level of huge casualties in the European fronts, winners and loser. It was not an asymetrical victory.
Winning a war is not winning the last battle, faster or cheaper. It’s winning the Peace.
If in less than 60 years France, Germany could work together to build a peacefull EU, the way the WWII ended here has much to do with it.

As the way WWI ended has much to do with why the WWII happened. We win the war in 1918, but we lost the peace…

As far as no nuclear attacks since then go, since you are familiar with MAD, why don’t you come up with a better solution?

Because I’ve none, as there’s probably none.
Unless major nuclear powers making a surprising move to disarm their nukes, actually pushing for a no-nukes world, there’s no other solution. Deterence is the best solution, so far. We just have to deal with new comers.

It’s a sad fact, but it was only nuclear weapons that prevented a massive war between NATO and the Warsaw Pact. Nukes are cheap compared to the numbers of ships and divisions a nation would have to field to achieve the same deterrent effect. The economic boom that followed the initial rebuilding of Western Europe would not have been possible if France and the rest of Western Europe had to maintain armies big enough to deter the Soviets.

Agreed, and nowhere I said deterrence didn’t work or was bad. It’s our best option to handle the pandora box we opened.

North Korea and Iran are both dangerous states to world security. Iran actively supports terrorist operations throughout the Middle East and has threatened Israel. North Korea threatens South Korea and Japan. For them to gain nukes with the rocket technology to allow them to strike targets around the world is unacceptable.

And yet, what our other choice except accepting it do we have?
Pre-emptive strikes, nuclear or not, which would most probably turn the east-asian region and muslims nations into hell?

Or just keep our eyes wide opened on these guys and, meanwhile, trying to win the mind of their people by, for example, pushing for a multinational program to both help under permanent international watch Iran nuclear civil program (if any)?

Instead, we’re telling Iran “we wont negociate about your nuclear programs until you cancel it all”. That’s not negociating. That’s not making comprise necessary for world safety. That’s dreaming. That’s fooling ourselves. That’s putting balls before brains. And, as shown, that’s not working!

I fail to understand why you would have our nations just blindly trust lunatics who have said they want us all dead.

Where did I say “let’s trust them”?
I don’t trust them, obviously. We should not. In nuclear deterence, nobody could trust anyone.

Since you bring up the arms race, it might interest you to know that the US is either on the brink of or already has nuclear primacy, ie the ability to hit any nation with a first strike that would eliminate all of its weapons and make a counterstrike impossible.

Then give me assurance that NEVER EVER an US president could become enough powerfull *and* mad to use this capability?
Yeah, problem is you can’t make such promise, you just can’t give such warrant. How could you?!
Future is future, and shit happens.

And what about a multi-nations counterstrike?
Still impossible? Do you want to bet on it?
Maybe you too should play at DEFCON level 1 yourself to see how it turns…

I dunno if I should fear more a mad N Korean or Iran leader that could be mad enough to use some nukes at the price of their people and landscapes lives or a superpower that could actually use nukes without anyone to balance it.

Usually, I tend to fear first the one who have the most deadly weapons. Don’t you?

There is no way to win an arms race with nuclear weapons except to ensure that there is no way to be attacked without having enough weapons to wipe out your enemy.

Isn’t it the case here : every nuclear powers aren’t against N.Korea and Iran regarding their nukes programs? Does any here doubt that N.Korea or Iran could hit any of these nations without being erased from earth surface by the others?

The problem here is Russia could become our enemy in the future. Or from Europe point of view, in a long distant future, USA could too. So, should we go again the nuclear arms race in Europe to protect from a mad US president in a future that could be fool enough to want to nukes us, a possibility that is not zero?

Aka, should we become more dangerous too?
Or should we be the one to show that’s pointless?

Nuclear weapons will never go away unless we think up something even more destructive.

Like a radical climate change…

Faced with this reality, it is not only prudent but required of nations to ensure that we try to limit conflicts and make sure that the costs of such conflicts are such that no one will ever use these weapons.

Except for the US. Right.
Do what I say, not what I do.

I always fail to see how be the one who actually start an armed conflict could limit future conflicts? If you’re the first to attack, by definition you’re the aggressor, whatever the good or not reasons you could have, and the attacked people will always think of you that way, seeing themselves as defending. Which leads to revenge and retaliation each time.
Pre-emptive doctrine only works when you can kill everyone you attacked and their friends, but no innocent ones. Nukes are not very good at this task, isn’t it?

One day or another, they’ll fight back.
In such situation, you will and I will, right?

So, kill me all or be prepared to the next next conflict. Which means no subtainable peace.

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at October 9, 2006 12:11 PM
Comment #187148

PETRO,

We are no longer a Super Power but a Super Pacifier that will prove to be the Down fall of America.Thank you Mr. Kerry,Mr. murtha,Mrs.Polosi and last but not least The New York Times and all other Liberal Media.

Believe me, that’s NOT the way the world think about US.

Beside, I didn’t know Kerry, Murtha, Polosi and the NYT and others “liberal” media are in control of White House!
What happened to your government? Where are they?
Afterall, who is the Commander In Chief in your country? Which party own the Senate and Congress since years? How could they, with so much control on every powers, be defeated by some politicians of a party not in power and a few medias?

Doesn’t Bush have both the power and the duty, if the American national security is at such risk thanks to these people, to kill them right now right here, in order to restore security for all other americans? Look at Putin. He seems to do it very well to protect Tchecheny national security… Maybe Bush should call him and ask some advice?

Give me a break. “no one will take us serious again”. YOU, americans, are the one to blame for that. You want to be taken seriously again? Start to act seriously again. Meanwhile, stop blaming the *others*.

You got the leadership you deserve, if not elect.

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at October 9, 2006 12:23 PM
Comment #187167

Philippe Houdoin When you have the leadership of a major party fighting tooth and nail to tie the hands of the President in time of war you weaken the United States of America.When the New York Times has a History of leaking Cassified Information on a Daily Basis You weaken the President.The President works on behalf of the American People.Those who fight his Authority are fighting for the enemy.I would say that all enemies of the U.S. take into concideration the benefits they can expect from The Liberal’s and the Liberal media before they test their Bombs Before they Attack Americans around the world.

Posted by: PETRO at October 9, 2006 1:01 PM
Comment #187222

Does anyone have any Haldol?

Posted by: Dr. Poshek at October 9, 2006 3:00 PM
Comment #187253

PETRO,

What are you talking about???
Tie the hands of government? Republicans have control of BOTH houses, how a minority party could block the GOP!?!

Hello!?

Regarding leaking classified information, who are responsible for NOT leaking them at the first place, the one who classified them or the one who get their hands one from first leaking source?
Why this government didn’t fired all data security officers after so much leaks?
Why didn’t Bush didn’t just jail the reporters?
Afterall, he’s weak on them, right? He obvioulsy have the power to do it. But he don’t use it.

When you whim about weaken government and nation, ask the one who actually have the power. Is it dem s or the republicans?

Stop playing this childish “it’s all fault of dems, they don’t like our policies” blame game.
Stand up. Ask your republicans to stand for what they said they’ll do. Restore moral values. Conservative budgeting. Strong foreign policies. Catch OBL. Bring democracy and freedom to iraquis.

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at October 9, 2006 4:23 PM
Comment #187370

LT1 B,

Do you actually think that Kim Jong would endanger his own country and life by using nuclear weapons against South Korea. The radiation would be a catastropy not to mention our non nuclear bombardment response. GWB’s administatons handling of this crisis is the only foreign policy decison I have agreed with when it comes to his proclaimed “axis of evil.”
China, Russia, South Korea and Japan should be involbed in all talks.
My comments concerning Iran stem from the huge mistake of invading Iraq. You don’t tell the American people that Sadaam must be disarmed, and later tell us that this was done to help the Iraqi people. A respected Kansas Senator not so long ago campaigned on a slogan that said ” the american people deserve a president that will tell them the truth.” I wholeheartedly agreed then and I wholeheartedly agree now. I would not want to see Iran acquire nuclear weapons, but do you listen to our president’s rhetoric when he speaks about the enemy(Al Queda). He calls them ISLAMIC terrorist. ISLAMIC facist, ISLAMIC extremist. I believe Islam to be a religion of peace and cannot condemn an entire people on the actions of minority faction.
The efforts of all heads of state should be concentrated on demanding that Israel and the Palestinians live in peace, whatever that takes. Then and only them, will we have peace and security in that region of the world.

Posted by: Harold at October 10, 2006 9:56 AM
Comment #187424

Philippe The Republicans in the house and Senate have become Democrat Lites.Even so at least they are willing to continue untill the Job is done.This means Victory In Iraq and nothing Less.

Posted by: PETRO at October 10, 2006 1:55 PM
Comment #223534

i agree with Jack really it is impossibol that the USA will keep Iran out from havin the necluar weapons she will have cause the united states have now problems in iraq and the question of terrorism and regue states than if we think in objectif way we find that america have not the right to do not let any country to difend herself in a world where many countries have the NW but we lock our life we say the next generation will suffer fom our sins ( pardon je ne peus pas ecrire bien en anglais)

Posted by: mary at June 20, 2007 3:57 AM
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