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Sunday, February 07, 2010

Guldimann's Stockholm syndrome

If any of you are not yet familiar with the concept of Stockholm syndrome, please go here to read about it. After reading JPost's Amir Mizroch's interview with former Swiss ambassador to Iran Tim Guldimann (pictured), I'm convinced that Guldimann picked up Stockholm syndrome during his term in Iran.
According to Guldimann, the position that unless the international community stops Iran’s nuclear program, Israel would have to do it alone is based on the unproven assumption that Iran will actually go down the road of having a nuclear weapon at its disposal.

“My understanding is that they will not go as far as that. If you say that there is [in Iran] a clear policy of achieving a nuclear capability, I would fully agree. You can define that as a breakout period. But will they make a political decision to produce a bomb? Such a breakout is an absolutely different question,” he says.

So what options does Israel have?

“The old stick-and-carrot approach hasn’t helped at all. You can speak about sanctions, but they have not changed Iran’s position. Sanctions often seem to have more the purpose of, in the West, an argument to Israel [that things are moving],” he notes. “The counter-argument is force. If Israel goes for a military option, I’m really, deeply concerned that there is this assumption that it will help.

“Let’s use the security of Israel as the only yardstick for assessing the situation. A military attack can damage [the Iranian nuclear program] but you can’t stop it. It is an industry with tens of thousands of people in it. You can damage and you can delay. You can even argue that you can bash it once, twice, maybe three times. And you can come back and do it again, if you think it’s like a little boy that keeps on coming out and you bash him every time. But the world might be a totally different place [after a first attack],” Guldimann says.

Guldimann – again in his personal opinion – contends that even in a situation of civil unrest and popular opposition to the regime in Iran, an outside attack would not bring down the regime.

“That’s not the Iranian way. It has to be kept in mind that if there is an outside attack on the regime, internal opposition within the regime, and opposition to the regime in general, will all fall in line with the regime. They will close ranks. On the nuclear issue, [opposition figure Mir Hossein] Mousavi is more hard-line than [President Mahmoud] Ahmadinejad. If there is an outside attack on Iran’s nuclear facilities, the Iranian people would feel tremendously humiliated. And if Israel today has got a regime against it, it will then not only have a regime against it, but also a country against it. An attack on Iran would be very good for Ahmadinejad. He will get the foreign enemy he is always talking about.
From what I've seen, Guldimann is actually right about Moussavi, but I'm not convinced that Iran's Green movement is as hostile to Israel as the current regime or Moussavi.

Guldimann also discounts the notion that an attack that 'only' produces a delay in Iran's obtaining nuclear weapons is worthwhile. He's wrong about that. Once you get a delay, you never know what will happen before Iran can get back to where they are now. Look what happened after Israel's attack on Osirak in 1981 - Iraq never recovered.

But I also don't trust Guldimann. He believes that all of our problems will go away if only we pander to the 'Palestinians,' a notion that I wholeheartedly reject. And he says that we're better off living with a nuclear Iran than trying to stop them, which I find to be absurd.

Read the whole thing.


At 11:40 AM, Blogger Chrysler 300M said...

decapitate Iran by elimination Khamenei and Ah´djad, much easier and much more effective


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