September 25, 2009

You And What Army?

Well, I am shocked.  Truly shocked.  Appalled and surprised.  It turns out that Iran has a second uranium-enrichment facility at which it appears to be making weapons-grade plutonium.  This has earned the condemnation of the G-20 nations, including the personal condemnation of President Obama, who said today:

The size and configuration of this facility is inconsistent with a peaceful program. ... Iran is breaking rules that all nations must follow, endangering the global nonproliferation regime, denying its own people access to the opportunity they deserve, and threatening the stability and security of the region and the world.
In response, while addressing the United Nations, Iran's President Ahmadenijad has basically said, "We don't care if you don't like our nuclear program."

Because, really, what are we -- "we" being either the United States or the United Nations or some significant fraction thereof -- going to do about it?  Here are our options.  In theory, we can (pick one and only one):
  • Diplomatically condemn Iran for developing nuclear weapons.  "Naughty, naughty Iran!  Bad rogue nation!  Now please stop immediately!"
  • Expel Iran from the United Nations.
  • Stop selling things to Iran.
  • Stop buying Iranian oil.
  • Launch airstrikes to destroy Iran's nuclear enrichment facilities.
  • Launch airstrikes to destroy Iran's nuclear enrichment facilities, and then invade Iran.
As a realistic, practical matter, only the first option is actually achievable.  And Iran's President has apparently decided that he can somehow find the internal fortitude to endure the vicious scolding we have in store for him.

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