For years George W. Bush promised not to let Iran go nuclear on his watch. Well, technically he is going to keep his word. But the reality is that Iran is closer to a nuclear weapon than ever before and he is going to do nothing, but nothing, to stop it. It all turned out to be part of the hot, actionless rhetoric His foreign policy mentor and the woman who convinced him not to do anything to stop Iran from going nuclear, Condi Rice, explained today that Washington does not need to act because the new American ally, Iraq, can be relied upon “to be a bulwark against undue Iranian influence in the region.” Yes, you read correctly. Realist old/new defense secretary Gates, has seemed to make a similar argument to Arab governments worried about Iran:
Your interests and Iraq’s are aligned on a number of levels: in the fight against Al-Qaida and terrorism; in the desire to develop a vibrant and resilient economy; in efforts to bridge the sectarian divides in this part of the world; and … in the necessity to limit Iranian influence and meddling nationally and regionally – meddling that has already cost far too many lives.
In the meantime, the Iranian economy is going from bad to worse, which means that the Mullah will soon need to direct the attention of their restive populace towards real and imagined enemies (the same can be said about his Russian allies). Hence, those who argue that Iran’s weakening offers nuclear hope better think again and quickly. Time is not on their side. Time is on the side of major nuclear proliferation in the Arab world. The American - “responsible partner,” UAE, nuclear agreement is the wave of the future. Egypt, Saudi Arabia and stable, democratic American strategic ally, Iraq are sure to be next in line.
Good luck to us all, we are going to need it especially if we are going to rely on a week reed called Iraq to protect us from the resurgent Persians and their Russian enablers. For G-d, you see, only helps those who help themselves.