June 2, 2006
-- by John Emerson
The tea-leaf readers believe that the Bush administration is getting ready to cut a deal with Iran, and that all the hot air (see below) is just for show. My own fear is that they are wrong, and that Bush plans to provoke a war or a crisis in order to save his presidency.
Yes, that would terribly risky for the US and the world, but that won't stop Bush. Whatever else he may be, he's a risk-taker, and I think that he knows that he's finished unless something big happens.
Do the Democrats have a response planned? My money says no. Half of them will probably support the war, and in the confusion the Republicans may well pull off an election victory
We'll know soon enough.
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The hope lies in El Baradei's recent assertion that they pose no threat, giving a great deal more oomph to China and Russia's opposition and forcing the western EU wafflers to realize that no explanation under the circumstances (particularly in light of Iranian diplomatic overtures) will cut it with their electorate.
If Bush goes in on this one, the U.S. will be absolutely isolated. Tony Blair no more wants what remains of his authority to wind up rotting on a pike outside 10 Downing Street, and the Italian and Spanish citizenry have spoken their feelings about military adventurism by means of their last elections. And Germany's Merkel might be more belligerent than Schroeder, but the German people won't get behind this kind of crap.
There's no way any kind of UN resolution gets passed, IMO. No international cover. It's still possible that Bush might throw caution to the wind and go for it, but it would be a very hard slog. And regarding the Democrats going along, I'm crossing my fingers for Ned Lamont. If Lieberman gets tossed on his ear, hopefully it will put the fear of Constituents back into them.
Posted by: natasha at June 4, 2006 3:07 PM
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