Saturday, October 6, 2012

Iran trouble bubbling and not going away

It would be stating the obvious to refer to the Middle East as the most turbulent part of the world. The United States recently wound down a long and costly war in Iraq, and for many, it was not a minute too soon.
Additionally, we will remain embroiled in Afghanistan for a least a couple more years. We have been there since late 2001, and a lot of personal sacrifice has been given in order to battle the Taliban and al-Qaeda.
In some respects, the Afghanistan conflict is starting to feel a little like a forgotten war. For such an important war, we rarely see much in-depth coverage of it in the mainstream media. We hear reports when people die, but do we really hear enough deep analysis of what is going on there? My answer would be 'no,' but that is a question people will have to answer in their own hearts.
However, even if our troops do leave in 2014, the Middle East's drama is doubtful to go away. This is because as long as Israel is there, then enemies of that country will be looking for ways to hamstring it.
Israel is America's most important friend in that region. Though it is often a tinderbox of activity, there can be no denying its importance when it comes to America’s interests in the Middle East.
This was especially apparent recently when international leaders spoke at the United Nations' General Assembly. The attention of United States and Israeli leaders was firmly on the growing threat of Iran's nuclear program.
Despite the focus on Iraq and Afghanistan in recent years, Iran continues in its role as thorn in the side of America in the region. A primary way this is manifesting itself is through the nuclear program Iran is currently developing.
Iran's president is Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, and to put is mildly, he is a kook. He is a hostile opponent of Israel not to mention his own people. Life in Iran is why every American should be happy that we live in this country.
Since the late 1970s, the country has been under the thumb of a conservative Islamic government and citizens there publicly oppose the government at their own risk. Human rights violations are well documented there, and if anybody does not believe that, just spend a little time on-line because there is plenty of research to back that up.
Additionally, Ahmadinejad denies Israel's right to exist and even goes as far as to proclaim the Holocaust did not occur. The Holocaust occurred in World War II as the Nazis extinguished six million Jews. If Ahmadinejad takes such extreme stances, isn’t it understandable why the Israeli government has gotten so jumpy as Iran has developed its nuclear capabilities?
After all, would not the United States get equally jumpy if a nearby country developed weapons capabilities we were uncomfortable with? Am I the only one who remembers the Cuban missile crisis?
Though most international experts are unified in believing that a nuclear Iran is a terrible idea, there is a lot of disagreement about how to handle it. Sanctions have hurt Iran but it apparently has not deterred the development of the program.
There has been some tension between President Barack Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu about the course to take. Both believe in deterring Iran, but the Israeli leader wants firmer accountability of Iran when monitoring what they are doing.
This is not an issue that is going away. If recent history shows us anything, the Iranians can be very creative when hiding what they are doing. In other words, we should not believe anything they say. Their leader hates America and Israel.

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