By Don Valentine
Let’s assume you did not like paying $3.50 a gallon for gas last summer. Then you have a Pocketbook reason to be concerned about the strife in the Middle East. If there is any hint of possible trouble distributing oil from the Middle East the price of oil goes vertical. The other Arab countries and Israel do not want to see a nuclear armed Iran.
It’s certain that if Iran gains Oppenheimer’s toy then there will be an arms race in the Arab countries. This conundrum has the entire U.N. Security Council perplexed on how to prevent this disaster. Keep in mind this five-member group includes countries like China, and Russia that are not the biggest fans of the U.S. The pundits of President Obama mendaciously color the topic as a U.S. exclusive issue.
So far, the U.N. has used the “stick” method of massive financial sanctions to motivate Iran not to create a nuclear bomb. While this has been a burden on their economy, it has still led to an increase from 100 centrifuges to 20,000. Clearly that path is not slowing their progress toward producing a bomb. The current glut in world oil has hit Iran particularly hard when combined with the sanctions.
President Obama’s Administration has taken the lead to encourage the U.N. to use the “carrot” method to negotiate with Iran to behave responsible. This stance has been criticized by conservative pundits. These critics have yet to offer an alternative plan to put out this fire. Dr. Henry Kissinger recently commented in the Wall Street Journal that President Obama and Secretary Kerry should be praised for the progress they have achieved on this front.
Primarily, if Iran gets the bomb they will be a major threat to Israel. As Israel’s big brother the U.S. will be directly involved in protecting them. That has major domestic consequences in our community if we have to defend Israel. Guess which minority group has the largest presence in the military!
Don Valentine, freelance writer, U.C. Berkeley ’89 B.S. Psychology, McGeorge Law School J.D. ‘92