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« A worthy protest against the Chinese government | Main | The always intelligent Seib on Iran and the election »
7:29AM

Why Ahmadinejad Is Better for the U.S. Than Moussavi

As the beat-down goes on and the rhetoric ratchets up, President Obama's poker hand may be getting better. Dealing with an isolationist leader in the middle of a progressive uprising, after all, means you get thrown the aces.

Continue reading this week's World War Room column for Esquire.com.

Reader Comments (5)

Tom,

My impression from what I have read is that the Supreme Leader is the controlling force for Iranian politics, and that the President has no power other than what the Supreme Leader delegates. Your attitude regarding Ahmedinejad seems to think that he is politically savvy, and more secularly power hungry than a Radical Islamist hell bent on destroying Israel and America and setting up chaos with the west in preparation of the return of Mahdi, which is the rhetoric that he spouts. Do you believe that this radical rhetoric is just rhetoric? Do you think that he doesn't mean what he says?
June 25, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterDean Wakeham
The Iranian's taking to the streets should have studied Irish history. They would have realized that you don't start a "rebellion" unless you have your ducks all lined up. People marching and shouting slogans makes for great T.V. but it has never brought down a totalitarian state. Either you need the folks with the guns (army and police) to come over to your side or you need to get some guns yourselves. If our forefathers had simply printed pamphlets and given stirring speeches we would still be singing "God save the queen."
June 25, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterTed O'Connor
Dean,

That's like asking if Bush ran his presidency on the off chance the Messiah was coming back during his terms.

Bush said he talked to God regularly. He's an evangelical.

Does anyone think he ran for the office or ruled on that basis?

So no, I don't consider that a serious issue. And it certainly doesn't get me any explanatory power on the way he's conducted his career.
June 25, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterTom Barnett
But Bush never made statements that Jesus was returning and that he was doing all that he could to create a situation on Earth to speed up that approach. Also, most Christians are not looking to sacrifice their lives for the destruction of others with the belief that this is the surest way to Heaven.

I am not saying that Ahmedinejad is not a rational actor with what Americans would perceive as irrational rhetoric. I don't know enough about the man, Persian culture, or his sanity, and that very well could be the case.

What would persuade you that the guy really is looking to destroy Israel and the United States? I think it is dangerous to project your own decision making thought process on him, and discounting the words coming out of his mouth? Will you only believe it when he gets the bomb and drops it on Israel? If you don't fear destruction, MAD is not a sustainable strategy, but a process to get you the weapons you need to destroy your enemy, no matter what happens to you. That seems like it could be a big gamble to me.
June 25, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterDean Wakeham
If you fear destruction above all else, you need to excuse yourself from serious discussion.

As for swallowing foreign propaganda, be my guest.

That sort of scared, reconnaissance-by-fire approach isn't worth the cost of always putting your enemies' fingers on your trigger.

I prefer America sked its wars on its own terms.
June 26, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterThomas P.M. Barnett

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