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Proliferation Nightmare


JPOD is absolutely right. President Bush’s speech is a landmark event.  As John says, the president’s pledge not to allow a nuclear Iran is a major policy declaration that could well result in a clash before long.  My piece today, “Kingdom Come,” gives an inkling of why a president, faced with the implications of a nuclear Iran, might feel that he has no choice but to act.  But the horror of it is, the points I cover only scratch the surface of the many frightening implications of an Iran armed with nuclear weapons.

I cite several sources in “Kingdom Come.”  But here’s a passage from another, Democratic Middle East specialist Kenneth Pollack’s book, The Persian Puzzle (p. 421):

“[The Persian Gulf states] might look to balance [a nuclear] Iran by developing a nuclear capability of their own.  Saudi Arabia is best positioned to do so, given Riyadh’s longstanding support for the Pakistani nuclear program, which undoubtedly was motivated by precisely the fear that Iran or Iraq would acquire nuclear weapons and the Saudis would then want to be able to counter them without having to increase their reliance on the United States–already a painful domestic political issue.  The UAE, Qatar, and Kuwait also have the kind of financial resources that would sorely tempt a North Korea or Pakistan to sell them one or more nuclear weapons, if any of them was inclined to do so.  Obviously, such a scenario is the ultimate proliferation nightmare.”