View From the Pond
The war in Iraq

Nobody likes war, and very few see the point of our controversial war in
Iraq.
Some think we are entering into a conflict of religion. Most think we need
to just get out. As much as that seems desirable, that may not be the
wisest course of action.

Lately in the news we are seeing involvement of Iran, Persia if you will, in
fomenting chaos and destruction in Iraq, attempting to stymie our effort
to stand up a democracy.

Why? Normally a nation desires a stable nation for a next door neighbor.
What does Iran gain if America fails in Iraq and chaos reigns? Is it just
about religion? I think there is more to it, masked in religion. Iran wants
America to retreat. They are the ones who gain from that. They gain
control of the Persian Gulf from both sides, giving total control over the
flow of oil. Even the Arabists in Saudi Arabia are not safe. Indeed,
terrorists seeking to strike at Saudi Arabia operating out of Iran were
recently caught.
Iran would also dominate and dictate the oil from Saudi Arabia and
Kuwait.

So what, who cares, many would ask?

If Iran controls all of the oil from the region, they are in a position to
dictate western reaction and western foreign policy. Without oil, the west
collapses in short order.
The makings of an economic depression are the flower of an economy
without enough oil and that power would be in the hands of radicals that
consider America Satan. Persia will basically be in a position to say to
us, “DO THIS, or THE OIL STOPS." And so we a faced with a
choice... economic death, or UN inspection of nuclear facilities. Stop aid
to Israel, or stand in bread lines.

Blackmail with oil. But it's a relatively short window of opportunity in
historical terms for Iran. The day is not far when we will not use as much
oil, and then they have no chance at leverage with oil. For economic
reasons and environmental reasons we are moving to an economy that
uses much less oil, but this takes time.

They see this, and they see Iraq as the means to achieve a new Persian
Empire. They mask their intentions with accusations we are in a war of
religion to deceive the way a magician hides his trickery that makes the
magic seem real .

We in America certainly don't see the issue as a conflict of religions. I
hope the moderate Muslims do not either. But the moderate Muslims,
contrary to what is commonly believed, are not in control in Iran, and
probably never will be. Here's why:

In a theocratic society the religious pressure can be tremendous. When I
was six I remember an incident from Sunday school. The class was
singing as part of some kind of show for the rest of the church. I barely
knew the words, and lip synced while all of the other voices filled the air.
To me, one missing voice out of thirty did not seem noticeable. Six year
olds can be very naive. After the song one little smart aleck ran to the
teacher and said loudly, pointing at me, "THAT BOY WASN'T
REALLY SINGING!" I felt humiliated and stupefied at the gross
incongruity between the teachings and the practice.

Of course there were no consequences for either me or the little
tattle-tail. This is America. We don't even have to go to Church.

But imagine the real pressure that can be applied in a theocracy where
consequences are far greater than we like to imagine. In that kind of
society pressure valves can be opened to keep a really restless segment
from reaching critical mass and rebelling.

I believe the Iranian SIS keeps tabs on all the dissenters, but the
government lets them spout off as a pressure release. It's good for the
west to see how "lenient" the government is, while at the same time
keeping a theocratic pressure on, but controlled.

Do not believe for a second the moderates will ever gain power in Iran
without some kind of BOLTS from heaven killing off the radical
leadership first.

And yes, I have looked at the Iranian power structure. The real power
derives from behind Amedinejad, who appears to be a kind of front
man. The real power is far more dangerous and radical.

Don't believe either they are in a self destructive mode. The manipulation
of events in Iraq is designed to give the Persians leverage over the west
to stifle any kind of response, be it sanctions on the nuclear program or
retaliation for a strike on Israel. They are betting a more liberal
administration faced with the blackmail power of our lifeblood.. oil... that
they would operate with impunity in a new Empire they mastered.

Do I advocate starting a direct confrontation with Iran? NO, I do not.
The struggle will be won or lost in Iraq. If Iraq is lost, the Persians will
have had our queen, so to speak, and to continue a chess match without
the queen is usually hopeless.

If Iraq is won... won so the new government is stabilized where they can
keep the insurgency bottled to a criminal element level and the allies keep
a token trigger line force not unlike what has kept the peace on the 38th
parallel in Korea for over half a century, the it is the Persians who are
checkmated. They cannot have an exclusive on the oil, and therefor they
cannot dictate to the west.

This gives time for oil to become history for the west. When gas burning
cars become outnumbered by transport not dependant on oil, then we
can let them kill each other off en mass. I truly don't have a problem with
that.

This is why I stated earlier Iran has a short window of opportunity here
to machine the geo-political outcome of the region. This is why Iraq is
crucial to the west.

Jimmy April 29, 2007