Bombing Iran’s Nuclear Facilities?
The news has been reporting more and more lately about the intentions of the US and/or Israel to attack Iran. Categorizing the reason for such attack, the issue can be seen two-fold. On the one hand, there are the nuclear program of Iran, which regardless of it its true purpose is a perceived a threat especially to Israel. On the other hand, the foreign policy of Iran can be perceived as independent and thus, there are no guarantees on how the nuclear program will end. One of the most apparent examples of cases of Iran’s unexpected behavior is the case of Teheran’s embassy hostages (The History Guy). With the immunity given to diplomatic officials even at wars (Straight Dope Science Advisory Board), such incident was greatly condemned (The History Guy).
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However, in the present case the decision of whether to strike Iran or not can be viewed from a moral position as well. The latter can be specifically justified in the light of the recent anti-war moods, Obama’s largely peaceable foreign policy with the Middle East, and what is more important, the failure to find weapon’s of mass destruction in Iraq, the intention of finding and destroying which was the cause of starting the military operation in Iraq in the first place (The Associated Press). The following passages will attempt to support the statement that it will be considered morally wrong for the United States to bomb or participate in bombing Iran’s nuclear facilities.
The main issues for the US and Israel in terms of Iran’s potential in having a nuclear weapon is related to national security issues and national threats respectively (The Week). Striking the nuclear facilities would certainly eliminate such threats fro both countries. On the other hand, as it was stated by Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, such strike might open the Pandora box (JAMES ROSEN). Although Graham supports opening such “box, it cannot be argued that the consequences of such act might far surpass the elimination of national threats for Israel and the United States. The consequences might include sending more troops into a region which is vastly becoming very unstable. Additionally, the reaction from the Islamic world might increase religious and ethnic hostility between US citizens and citizens from the Middle East.
What is more important though is the possibility for such hostility to transfer to other western countries including Asia and Europe that might condemn such actions. With no known facts of Iranian intention of making nuclear weapons, the US might face the need for political justification, not only before the international community, but also before their own citizens as well. As it was stated earlier, there are fewer and fewer people who justify the military operation in Iraq, and that is just 8-10 years after the 9/11 terrorist attack. With a proof of aggressive military intentions, the anti-war moods in the United States might turn into anti-government acts, with photos of innocent victims from such strikes being posted everywhere.
As for the rationale of starting negotiations with Iran, it can be stated that words sometimes are capable of making greater impact than military operations. An example of the latter can be seen through the reaction of the Muslim and the Arab world to Obama’s Cairo speech in 2009. Although the reaction was not unanimously favorable, Initial reactions from the Middle East and the broader Islamic world were generally positive (Radio Free Europe).
It can be concluded that striking Iran’s nuclear facility will be condemned morally. The consequences of such condemnation might be the most severe from American citizens themselves. The latter is specifically evident in the light of the increasing opposition to the war in Iraq, which as of 2006 reached 61 percent (CNN). The negotiation solution can be seen as a good choice for the United States and Israel, especially with Obama’s new directions toward foreign policy in the Middle East.
CNN. “Poll: Opposition to Iraq War at All-Time High”. 2006. CNN. Web.
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JAMES ROSEN. “U.S. Must Consider Military Force against Iran, Sen. Graham Says”. 2010. Miami Herald. Web.
Radio Free Europe. “Mideast, Islamic World React to Obama’s Cairo Speech”. 2005. Radio Free Europe.
Straight Dope Science Advisory Board. “What’s the Story on Diplomatic Immunity?”. 2005.
The Associated Press. “CIA’s Final Report: No WMD Found in Iraq”. 2005. MSNBC. Web.
The History Guy. “Iran-U.S. Hostage Crisis”. 2010. The History Guy.
The Week. “Will Israel Attack Iran?”. 2005. The Week. Web.