A Classic Case of BDS
"President Bush just can't catch a break. It seems like every time he tries to be bellicose, the facts come along and trip him up.
Five years ago, he railed against the "grave and gathering danger" of Saddam Hussein's WMDs, only to suffer irreperable domestic political damage when it turned out that he had committed American blood and treasure to the overthrow of a dictator who had no WMDs. And now he has been embarrassed again: Just six weeks after he raised the specter of the Iranians wielding a nuclear weapon, and invoked "World War III," America's 16 intelligence agencies have concluded in a new National Intelligence Estimate, with "high confidence," that the Iranians actually halted their nuclear weapons program..."
First of all, the "facts" that came along contracted the very "facts" that NIE preparers offered just a few short years ago. These aren't hard "facts" as much as they are educated guesses. What part of "estimate" doesn't Polman understand? Our intelligence agencies have been notoriously wrong in the past.
It wasn't just Dick Cheney who declared there were weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. That was the consenus of the entire U.S. and European intelligence community.
That's where the Bush Administration came up with its best guess of the level of threat posed to the world by Saddam Hussein.
Now the same intelligence community, the one that also said that Iran was seeking a nuke, says Iran ceased it nuclear program in 2003. Good, let's hope they're right. THIS TIME.
But gee, let's think back to what happening then. Oh yeah, the U.S., under the bellicose Bush, was gearing up to go to WAR in Iraq. You think maybe that had something to do with the Mullahs in Tehran rethinking their plans to obtain a nuclear weapon?
If Mr. Polman thinks that ratcheting down the rhetoric concerning the danger of Iran being allowed to nuke-up will pacify the Mullahs dreams of becoming a nuclear power, he is probably mistaken.
The fact is, no one really knows what will work when it comes to preventing Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons but a combination of carrots and sticks seems to be the most reasonable approach. Figuring out how many carrots vs. how many sticks is the trick here. But Polman acts as if tough rhetoric and credible threats never work against authortarian regimes, when they can and do. Military strikes should always be a last resort.
So far, the "bellicose" Bush hasn't resorted to one against the terrorist-supporting, American-soldier-killing regime in Tehran.
It is obvious that Polman's bigger concern and greater joy is in Bush-bashing.
An objective person would recognize at least the possibility that the Bush Administation's approach is working in the Middle East. But not Polman. Like so many on the Angry Left, he so invested in the idea of America's/Bush's failure, that all objectivity seems to have left him. Instead of analysis, his readers get rants.
When he's not in the grips of a really bad BDS attack, Polman has better to offer.
UPDATE: Here's the WJS edit on the subject. I leave it to you, who sounds more rational on the subject, Polman or the WJS editorialist?