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Iran: Not Happy About Being 'Obliterated'

World  (tags: Hillary Clinton, war, troops, politics, pandering, Iran, United Nations Charter, foreign policy, ethics, campaign 2008 )

- 3975 days ago -
Iran's deputy ambassador to the UN, writes that Clinton's words were "provocative and irresponsible" and represent "a flagrant violation" of the UN Charter. " According to Tehran, Clinton "unwarrantedly and under erroneous and false pretexts threatened


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Blue Bunting (855)
Sunday May 4, 2008, 5:08 am
Last Friday, we detailed an unsettling string of diplomatic gaffes--by far the most of any 2008 presidential candidate--that sort of, like, contradicted Hillary Clinton's reputation as a steady hand on foreign policy. There was the whole "calling the current prime minister of New Zealand the former prime minister of New Zealand while comparing her to a cockroach" thing. And the "claiming Vladimir Putin doesn't have a soul" thing. And the "mispronouncing the name of Putin's successor" thing. And the "speculating that Pervez Musharraf had Benazir Bhutto assassinated" thing. And the "embarrassing Gordon Brown by wrongly praising him for boycotting the opening ceremony of the Beijing Olympics" thing.

Still, for all the fuss over Obama's "Bubba Gap," we couldn't help but wonder whether "the international community will have concerns other than bowling scores and arugula come next January"--and whether Clinton's proclivity for causing controversy on the global stage says more about her ability to lead than Obama's relationship with Wright says about his. Echoing our concerns, readers pointed to Clinton's recent remarks about "totally obliterat[ing]" Iran as further evidence. "Hillary threatened to obliterate Iran just to win a few more votes in PA," wrote reader MShawn. "It's despicable that someone would make such statements just to appear tough." But we were reluctant to include Iran our on list because, unlike Clinton's other comments, her saber-rattling hadn't yet provoked a pissed-off retort from overseas.

Apparently, things change. In a letter sent this morning to UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon, Mehdi Danesh-Yazdi, Iran's deputy ambassador to the UN, writes that Clinton's words were "provocative and irresponsible" and represent "a flagrant violation" of the UN Charter. " According to Tehran, Clinton "unwarrantedly and under erroneous and false pretexts threatened to use force against the Islamic Republic of Iran." Do we sense a little tension?

Of course, it's important to consider Clinton's comments in their original context. Appearing on Good Morning America on the eve of the Pennsylvania primary, she didn't exactly threaten to "totally obliterate" Iran without provocation--as some of her bloodthirstiest critics would have you believe. Instead, she responded to question from ABC News' Chris Cuomo, who asked what she would do if Iran attacked Israel with nuclear weapons. "I want the Iranians to know that if I'm the president, we will attack Iran [if it attacks Israel]," Clinton said. "In the next 10 years, during which they might foolishly consider launching an attack on Israel, we would be able to totally obliterate them. That's a terrible thing to say but those people who run Iran need to understand that because that perhaps will deter them from doing something that would be reckless, foolish and tragic." As the New Republic's Michael Crowley put it, Clinton wasn't "revealing some warmongerish desire to capriciously destroy Iran." Instead, she was making a point about the realities of deterrence: that Tehran "need[s] to understand" that "we would be able to" retaliate so that they don't "reckless[ly], foolish[ly] and tragic[ally]" drop a bomb on Israel. Nothing particularly controversial there; we do, after all, have more than 2,000 operational warheads ready to go.

But politics is all about perception, and it's clear from Clinton's timing and belligerent choice of words--Iran is already well aware that we can "totally obliterate" them, thank you very much--that the New York senator had something other than diplomacy on her mind: namely, looking tougher than the "effete" Obama as voters in Pennsylvania went to the polls. Understandably, Tehran also picked up on her needlessly aggressive tone--and took offense. Now, it's not like the former First Lady would bomb Iran at the drop of a hat; she's established a lot of credibility on the Senate Armed Services committee and maintains a strong relationship with the Pentagon. But the problem is, Clinton's need to look tough isn't new. It's what generated the Putin gaffe--and arguably her vote to authorize the use of force in Iraq. In light of this pattern, it's worth wondering whether Clinton's instinct for political grandstanding at home--her desire to flex her muscles for domestic political gain--clouds her otherwise good judgment and (at the very least) increases her chances of stirring up unnecessary tensions abroad.

But hey, at least her pastor hasn't called anyone a "garlic nose."

Denise S (7)
Sunday May 4, 2008, 6:11 am
Hillary sounds more like Bush every day. Her recent comment - "you're either with us or against us" = is one of G.W.s most notorious. The usage of same drives home the point that she and he use the phase to purposedly polarize situations to meet their objectives - no matter the cost.

Polarization has been a hallmark of the current administration. She has always been a polarizing force. It goes without being said, the country is not being well served by such public servants.

Why she is still considered a viable candidate boggles the minds of sentient beings! Jonathan Alter of Newsweek used an expression the other day that explains some of her continued support. In response to a question posed by Keith Olbermann, Jonathan was very kind by alluding to the "informationally challenged" as an explanation.

There is no excuse to be "informationally challenged" in today's world! It drives me up the wall. We and the rest of the world have suffered under an Administration that has never cared for or kept the best interests of citizens at the fore, either at home or abroad, because people were "informationally challenged."

Unless people begin reading and studying, we are all doomed. All will continue to suffer because of the "informationally challenged."

Blue Bunting (855)
Monday May 5, 2008, 12:40 pm
Hillary Clinton, part of the "sales team" ...

On Selling War With Iran

Mehdi H (27)
Monday May 5, 2008, 9:20 pm
it is funny. The American officials say Iran is providing TRAINING and WEAPONS to the Iraqi militias which in result they are kicking American's Army's rear end and thousands of American men and women got killed and devastated your economy. My question is if you can't even fight some militia which were trained in Iran to save your men, How can you even think of fighting directly with 20 millions (yes, that's the right number) of fully trained and up to teeth armed military of Iran to save Israel? On the other hand, when US attacked Iraq the price of oil was only $36 and now you Americans are paying $120 to buy Iran's oil, you figure out how much the price of oil be if US even dares to declare war against Iran? plus, in 1979 Iran (including Mahmoud Ahmadinejad) attacked your embassy, took over it, kidnapped and tortured your officials on your embassy which is officially American soil and kicked you out of their country (which means declaring war) and you did not defend yourself, they Bombed and killed many Americans in Beirut and you did not do a thing about it. Hilary, you are just trying to get in this Mad Cowboy disease too to fool American people. Shame on you.

Simon Wood (207)
Monday May 5, 2008, 10:38 pm
Hillary Clinton and many other "Democrats" voted with the "Republicans" to invade Iraq, causing the deaths of hundreds of thousands of people. If you think she wouldn't do the same thing to the people of Iran, think again.

Both major parties are imperialist warmongers, attacking and killing people in numerous countries since the end of WW2: Afghanistan, Cambodia, Grenada, Haiti, Laos, Panama, Somalia, Sudan, Vietnam, Yugoslavia and others, and supporting brutal mass-murdering regimes in numerous other countries over the last few decades, including Pinochet in Chile; the Colombian oligarchy's war against the poor; the mass-murder of up to a million people in Indonesia; Israel's killing of over 70,000 Palestinians, Lebanese and Arabs; and Turkey's mass-murder of Kurdish people in the 1980s and 1990s. In all of those U.S. actions and U.S.-supported atrocities, there was very little difference between the "Democrats" and "Republians" - both parties did those kinds of things when in government.

So let's support the Green Party and socialist parties instead. : )

Simon Wood (207)
Monday May 5, 2008, 11:13 pm
Yes, Mehdi Heidari, you speak alot of truth.

The U.S.A. will only attack Iran if the U.S. rulers think that it will benefit them. Right now, it seems that their military is too busy in Iraq, etc., to attack any other countries. They probably won't seriously consider attacking Iran unless they think the U.S. military and economy, etc., will cope with it. However, they might judge incorrectly about that....

We can be grateful to the sacrifice that the people of Iraq are making in resisting the U.S.-led invasion. This sacrifice keeping the U.S. military busy, and is deterring the U.S. military from leading attacks against Iran and other nations.

Indeed, the cost of the war is huge. The total cost to people is maybe 2 or 3 trillion dollars (direct costs, economic problems caused, etc.). Part of that cost is interest payments on loans that the U.S. government has arranged to pay for this war. It is the first such war (payed for by borrowing money from other countries) in U.S. history since the war of independence - and is now the 1st or 2nd most expensive war the U.S. has engaged in. One of the major reasons for this is the government's choice to contract private corporations - e.g. mercenaries ("security contractors"), which have about as many people in Iraq as U.S. military forces do. Another reason is that, with the latest in medical science, many more injured U.S. soldiers are surviving, and each such case means a large cost for the U.S. war. In fact, about 40% of U.S. soldiers in Iraq who return to the U.S.A. are, or will be, disabled.

The cost is burdening the people of the U.S.A., but the military corporations and other U.S. multinational corporations owned by the U.S. ruling class are getting plenty of profits, BECAUSE of the war.

The main problem for the U.S. ruling class from this war is the political consequences.

It's an opportunity for us to support the Green Party and socialist parties in the U.S.A., to replace the old warmongering Democrat/Republican foreign policy with a peaceful and friendly U.S. foreign policy. : )

Hans L (958)
Tuesday May 6, 2008, 5:20 am
Hi Simon!
How do you think that the US poeple can make a difference i agree that there is no difference what so ever between Clinton or Mc Cain! Its like Arnold Schwarzenegger who is more of a democrate than many democrates are...i think that the Terminator would be better for president than any of the candidates now! A green party in the USA that could get 15% of the votes? That would be great or an animal party like here in Holland!


Mehdi H (27)
Tuesday May 6, 2008, 8:56 pm
Hi Simon, first what I was talking about was not just if the U.S will attack Iran or not but I was referring to what Clinton said to obliterate Iran. I have no doubt the United States can invade Iran as they did in Afghanistan, Iraq, Vietnam or etc. but obliteration is just a heck of a big word to use against a country with the power of Iran. I absolutely agree after the war in Iraq they may consider attacking Iran more seriously but by the time they withdraw from Iraq and start building their economy for another war, it will be just too late as by that time Iran will have nuclear weapons. so The United states should attack Iran now and consider an absolute economic tragedy, or wait till it is too late as if Iran has nuclear weapon United States will still be in another economic tragedy.

all in all, I really don't think either The United States will commit such a stupidity to attack Iran nor the Iranians make this mistake to attack Isreal
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