[Marxism] Re: New Republic: Military College prof says no to attacking Iran

Nick Halliday halliday.nick at gmail.com
Sun Aug 7 23:27:40 MDT 2005


>>Frankly, I think the US cannot settle for a joint US-Iranian condominium
for Iraq, which would register in itself a kind of defeat in the war.
Attacking Iran if successful, is probably seen as a way to force the
Shia leadership to accept US dominance, once it is proven against Iran.
If the US must accept strong de facto Iranian influence in Iraq, they
will be subject to forced withdrawal when Iran feels ready to push for

I wouldn't use the term 'Shia leadership' here, as the
collaborationist elements don't speak for the Sadrists, who are the
heart of the Shia Resistance. Being nationalists, they wouldn't accept
either US dominance and permanent occupation or a 'condominium'
between the US and Iran. Al Sadr wants good relations with Iran, but
he is an Arab of Lebanese descent and he and his followers wouldn't
stand for Iranian hegemony over their future any more than they would
the US's permanent occupation. So the US's collaborators have their
Shia and Kurd (and even Sunni) 'leaders', but they lead only because
they are collaborators with the US backing them up.
And there are some Shia would support Iranian influence, but I doubt
that it would mean much. Remember, Sistani, the Iranian, is bascially
not welcome in his own country, and having recently revealed himself
where he stands on the US's 'federal' plan for Iraq (in favour), has
shown himself to either a US ally or at least a friend of some of the
Shia Iraqis who collaborate with the US occupation.
There is no way the US could invade and occupy Iran--they couldn't
even occupy Syria now (Syria militarily speaking would be very well
prepared to expand the guerilla-style warfare once occupied, and that
is about all they could do, but that would be enough to make it all
politically unviable in the US, barring a complete military takeover
of the US federal government).

However, the US doesn't want Iran's economic, cultural and
geopolitical isolation to end (especially with recent turn of events
in elections), but it knows it has to come up with a new modus
operandi (just as, at a time when the sanctions and relatively covert
and low-level operations against Iraq had to come to an end, Bush used
the post 9-11 exigencies to justify war and occupation of two
countries). One reason why some in the US government will argue for
some sort of increase in the conflict against Iran is the same wild
card that was, at least internally to the executive branch, the reason
why Bush had to go to war and occupy Iraq: a nucIear armed Israel
which acts unilaterally against other countries in the region.  So
some in the ruling clique of the US will argue that the best way to
pre-empt an Israel-Iran war is to step in and be the military power. I
could even see such arguments about Israel vs. Iran being used to
justify the planned permanent occupation of Iraq.


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