In his column in the Washington Post on April 12, 2015, George Will seems to embrace a “Containment Plus” policy with respect to Iran and the Middle East: Give them all the bomb and they’ll contain each other. Seriously.
Here’s his argument:
Premise 1. If you really, really want something, nothing can stop you from getting it. And Iran really, really wants the bomb. “Iran is going to be a nuclear power if it intensely wants to be — and it does; no practicable sanctions can be severe and durable enough to defeat this determination.” None at all. This is an a priori certainty, a certainty by definition, like 1 + 1 = 2.
Premise 2. But, who knows, you might be able to make Iran’s road to the bomb just a little bit longer, and that might matter: “Even if the agreement merely extends the time during which Iran deceives inspectors to evade restrictions, time might matter.” It might or might not matter. This is a priori true just like A or not-A will always be true.
Premise 3. Other players in the Middle East, who while not quite as nihilistic as Iran still have a significant number of crazies biding their time in the shadows, will be driven on their own paths to the bomb, thereby making us all safer: “Fortunately, nations such as Egypt and Saudi Arabia are flexing their conventional military muscles, a necessary precursor to a balance of power. However precarious it might be, such a balance is a start to containing Iran.” Let’s assume that while the Saudis are talking to the Pakistanis and the Egyptians are talking to the Russians — as they currently are doing — their talks will stop at “conventional” weapons, and this might be enough to contain Iran. This is incapable of being parsed logically.
Finally there is this, according to Will, that Iran is on the wrong side of history: “…10 years can be a long time in the life of a nation, especially when the regime is discordant with modernity.”
Iran is discordant with modernity? George, look at it from Iran’s perspective. It is modernity that is discordant with Iran’s historical necessity — Islam’s conquest of the world. And if we follow your reasoning, George, Islam can’t be stopped. Because it really, really wants to win.
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