The endgame may be coming soon.4:45 PM, Aug 14, 2010 • By MICHAEL ANTON
Speculation about a possible attack on Iranian nuclear sites has reached a fever pitch over the summer. The talk is so wild that even level-headed commentators on the right like Michael Barone opine aloud that perhaps Israel won’t be the instigator; rather the Obama administration might order a U.S. strike.
The time for evasion is over.Jul 26, 2010, Vol. 15, No. 42 • By WILLIAM KRISTOL
Last month, we published an editorial under the title “A Period of Consequences.” The phrase was taken from a speech in the House of Commons in late 1936 in which Winston Churchill warned: “The era of procrastination, of half-measures, of soothing and baffling expedients, of delays is coming to its close. In its place we are entering a period of consequences.”
Keeping the military threat credible.10:30 AM, Jul 12, 2010 • By GABRIEL SCHOENFELD
Here is Benjamin Netanyahu on Fox News with Chris Wallace:
when the president [of the United States] says that he's determined to prevent Iran from developing nuclear weapons and that all options are on the table, I think that's the right statement of policy. ...the president's position that all options are on the table might actually have the only real effect on Iran...—if they think it's true.
Tehran gets closer to going nuclear.3:00 PM, May 20, 2010 • By MICHAEL ANTON
Just when you thought the Iran problem couldn’t get worse, it’s worse.
Lessons from history aid understanding of nuclear war scenarios -- and the outlook is grim. 6:25 PM, May 17, 2010 • By MICHAEL ANTON
The Telegraph (UK) published an astonishing bit of news over the weekend. Actually, it’s not quite “news,” as the story has been bouncing around for some years. But the Telegraph cites an article sanctioned by the highest authorities in Beijing, which gives the story a fresh imprimatur of credibility.
In 1969, when Sino-Soviet relations were at their worst, the Russians contemplated destroying Chinese nuclear sites with a first strike. They had the presence of mind to realize that letting nukes fly might have unintended consequences. So Moscow gingerly approached Washington with the news. The reaction was surprising. American officials told the Soviets that if they struck first, we would hit Russia with a nuclear strike of our own. Needless to say, nothing happened.
The Obama administration fumbles relations with India May 10, 2010, Vol. 15, No. 32 • By DANIEL TWINING
In 1998, President Bill Clinton flew over Japan without stopping on his way to spend nine days in China. This led to acute concern in Tokyo over “Japan passing”—the belief that Washington was neglecting a key Asian ally in favor of the region’s rising star, China. Twelve years later, Indians worry that the same thing may be happening to them, despite the transformation in U.S. relations symbolized by the 2008 nuclear deal.
Can the CIA understand Iran?12:15 PM, Apr 20, 2010 • By GABRIEL SCHOENFELD
A leading Iranian cleric, reports Reuters, is blaming earthquakes on female promiscuity. "Many women who do not dress modestly lead young men astray and spread adultery in society which increases earthquakes," Hojatoleslam Kazem Sedighi told worshippers in Tehran.
This may sound wacky, but it can teach us a serious lesson. The question it poses is: How well do we understand the thinking of the Iranian leadership on questions small and large? Here are some words of a caution from a CIA study:
Estimates Iran will have long-range missiles as early as 2015. 11:28 AM, Apr 20, 2010 • By MICHAEL ANTON
Remember the two missiles defense sites—one in Poland, the other in the Czech Republic—that the Obama administration cancelled last fall as a goodwill gesture to Russia? The stated rationale at the time was: Since the sites were intended to defend America and our allies from Iranian missiles, and our intelligence estimated that the Iranians were a long way from fielding such missiles, the sites were unnecessary.
Now, this was a transparently flimsy excuse even at the time. If we believed (which we did then and do now) that Iran is determined to develop ICBMs, then why wait? It takes time to build interceptor and radar sites and make sure they work properly. Is the right time to begin only after the threatening country has in hand the capability which the installations are intended to counter?
On Iran's nuclear program.12:50 PM, Apr 19, 2010 • By WILLIAM KRISTOL
Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Admiral Mike Mullen told a forum at Columbia University yesterday, "Iran getting a nuclear weapon would be incredibly destabilizing. Attacking them would also create the same kind of outcome...In an area that's so unstable right now, we just don't need more of that."
How comforting. 1:10 PM, Apr 14, 2010 • By GABRIEL SCHOENFELD
"Iran is not expected to be capable of producing nuclear weapons for at least a year, maybe more, U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates said on Tuesday,” reports Reuters, covering him from aboard a U.S. military aircraft en route to South America:
Asked about reported comments that Iran might be able to join the nuclear club in months, Gates said: "I don't believe it."
"I think that most estimates that I've seen, haven't changed since the last time we talked about it, which is probably at least a year, and maybe more," Gates told reporters.
A year is not a long time. What are we doing in response?
Kazakhstan and other repressive nations are given a podium. 3:15 PM, Apr 12, 2010 • By DANIEL HALPER
Kazakhstan's leader has given permission to the commander in chief to allow U.S. military planes to fly over his country en route to Afghanistan. This was the result of a meeting President Nursultan Nazarbayev held at the White House with President Barack Obama yesterday. That's one accomplishment -- perhaps the only accomplishment? -- of this Nuclear Security Summit in Washington, D.C.