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the blog

Wednesday Jan 10, 2007

Bush's Iran Speech

Two parts of Dubya's speech jump out to LiberalOasis.

I've made it clear to the Prime Minister and Iraq's other leaders that America's commitment is not open-ended. If the Iraqi government does not follow through on its promises, it will lose the support of the American people.

Read that carefully. He is not saying that his own commitment is not open-ended. This is no renouncement of permanent bases and permanent occupation.

He is saying that America's commitment (to his failed strategy) is not open-ended. This is mere acknowledgement of political reality.

In other words, Bush, and Iraqi PM Maliki, are acutely aware that if things don't improve in Iraq, the public will see to it that the next occupant in the Oval Office is getting the heck out of Iraq and adopting a different foreign policy approach to the region.

The other part concerns Iran and Syria:

Succeeding in Iraq also requires defending its territorial integrity and stabilizing the region in the face of extremist challenges. This begins with addressing Iran and Syria.

These two regimes are allowing terrorists and insurgents to use their territory to move in and out of Iraq. Iran is providing material support for attacks on American troops. We will disrupt the attacks on our forces. We'll interrupt the flow of support from Iran and Syria. And we will seek out and destroy the networks providing advanced weaponry and training to our enemies in Iraq.

We're also taking other steps to bolster the security of Iraq and protect American interests in the Middle East. I recently ordered the deployment of an additional carrier strike group to the region.

Unsuprisingly, Dubya has not taken advantage of the diplomatic opportunity provided by the recent slap the Iranian people gave their president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

Instead, he has ignored it and ratcheted up the saber-rattling, positioning an "additional carrier strike group" near Iran.

Thankfully, this did not go completely unnoticed.

MSNBC's Chris Matthews and Keith Olbermann spent ample time discussing the implications, and drew out from their colleagues Brian Williams and Tim Russert -- who met with Bush earlier in the day -- that Iran was very much on the mind of Bush and his aides.

WashingtonPost.com's William Arkin flagged it. The New York Times took note, (albeit buried in a larger story). Think Progress reported that a White House PowerPoint presentation says the new policy includes plans to "Increase operations against Iranian actors."

As Matthews noted, Dubya is still clinging to the neocon vision.

That reckless, destabilizing strategy will remain in place, unless Bush's fear is realized, and America definitively forces a change in course.

UPDATE 1/11/07 10:45 AM ET: Salon weighs in with "On to Iran?".

And a caller to The Sam Seder Show today points out this line from the Iran portion of Bush's speech, "We will ... deploy Patriot air defense systems to reassure our friends and allies," is particularly ominous, as defending Iraq from missile attacks has nothing to do with resolving the current sectarian violence.

Posted by Bill Scher on Jan 10, 2007 email post email Spotlight / / You are in Iran/ Iraq
Posts Near Jan 10, 2007
Jan 10, 2007Beware The Tactical

Jan 14, 2007Sunday Talkshow Breakdown