Time Magazine publishes a new report that the U.S. ambassador to Israel, Dan Shapiro, has reinforced the unity approach between Israel and the U.S. toward Iran. He puts in the starkest terms yet our expectation of the economic contagion we’re hoping to result from economic sanctions:
We need to show the Iranian government that it must choose between the nuclear plan and the country’s economic existence.
Two things seem clear from this statement. We don’t merely want to exert economic pressure on Iran, we actually want to sow ruin, the equivalent of economic genocide. The U.S. wants to see Iranians suffer, and do so on such a massive scale that the entire country will be brought to its knees. We appear not to care whether babies starve as they did by the hundreds of thousands in sanction-era Iraq.
The other aspect of his remark that appears clear is that while the U.S. has denied participating in the sabotage campaign against Iran’s nuclear program, we know of it and approve it. We’ve compartmentalized our efforts so the U.S. puts the squeeze on economically and Israel does it militarily. But this is a coordinated program and we are willing participants in it. Whether or not we planted bombs in Teheran, we are accessories after the fact and share in the culpability for this egregious conduct.
It is also clear that sanctions as defined by Shapiro are NOT an attempt to forge a diplomatic solution to Iran’s nuclear “threat.” Rather, they are an attempt to bring Iran to its knees and force it to accede to western demands. Make no mistake, we’re not trying to avoid bloodshed. Sanctions are part of a calibrated series of actions which will lead inexorably to war. Because there is no way that sanctions alone will bring the result the U.S. demands. And our policymakers have to know this. The only possible next step will involve force. But even force will not work unless we are prepared to put boots on the ground and violently topple the regime. This means that this policy can only fail ultimately.
When asked whether U.S. options also included a military one, Shapiro responded:
“Because stopping a nuclear Iran is so important, we’ve said this before and I’m saying it again, all options are open. All the possibilities.” said Shapiro. “And I’ll say more than that, we are examining these possibilities actively, and we are drawing up the necessary plans to ensure that all these options exist, and I’m not ruling out any option…”
Caspit said he asked the ambassador what he meant by “planning the options,” and whether they are also training for the implementation of these options, as foreign reports say the Israeli air force has been doing for some time. “Shapiro was quiet, and then said that America doesn’t need all that much training: ‘We have a massive military presence in the Persian Gulf, right?’”
Clearly, there are senior yahoos in the U.S. government who share Bibi Netanyahu and Ehud Barak’s enthusiasm for a military strike against Iran. These individuals will be fully responsible for the results of their statements. It should be made clear that Shapiro is bringing the region ever closer to the brink of war. He is sowing the seeds of disaster and will reap the whirlwind.
The Iran situation is becoming more and more like a slow motion train wreck. You see the train barreling toward you at high speed. You see the engineer and conductor screaming and waving at bystanders to get out of the way because the train has lost its brakes. No one can do a thing to stop it.
This article appeared at Tikun Olam