Faith & Social Justice: In the spirit of Richard Overton and the 17th C. Levellers

Israel Seeks U.S. Permission to Bomb Iran’s Nuclear Sites

The London Daily Telegraph reports that Israel is seeking U.S. permission to bomb Iran’s nuclear sites (which may be for a nuclear weapons program or may be peaceful as Iran claims). Notice that Israel is not seeking permission from the UN Security Council as international law demands, but from the U.S.–a move which is bound to be interpreted in the Middle East through the longstanding Arab claim that Israel is just an outpost of Western imperialism (even if the U.S. answer is “no”). This comes at a time when U.S. claims of intelligence against Iran is being debunked, but U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney is warning Iran that “all options are on the table,” identical language to that used in the run-up to the 2003 invasion of Iraq.An Iran armed with nuclear weapons WOULD be very dangerous, but war is not the way to prevent this. The U.S. needs to call a Middle East Peace Summit in a moderate nation such as Egypt or Jordan and deal with all regional issues. It also needs to pressure Israel to abandon its own (revealed-but-never-declared) nuclear weapons (estimated to be around 200 warheads) as the way to a nuclear-free Middle East.Tell President Bush and Vice President Cheney to quit threatening Iran with war and NOT to greenlight bombing requests for Israel. Register your disapproval with the Israeli Ambassador to the U.S. Write letters to your local paper urging negotiations, not war, with Iran.

Cross-posted from Mainstream Baptists.
UPDATE: Seymour Hersch, the veteran investigative reporter and owner of The New Yorker, is reporting a definite U.S. contingency plan to bomb Iran. See the Reuter’s release here. However, London’s Sunday Times is reporting that several U. S. Generals are planning public resignations in protest if such an attack occurs. Good for them. Public resignations and similar rejections of honors (quitting elite organizations or clubs, returning medals or diplomas,etc.) is a time honored form of nonviolent protest. (It is not a form of nonviolent coercion or intervention, just protest.) If the right people do it, it can rouse the populace. I called for such actions in the run-up to the Iraq war (because plenty of generals were against that in 2002!), but it goes against the habit of military obedience. It has taken these four years of disaster in Iraq to make such an action a real possibility. All the more reason for the rest of us to stand by these generals and continue our calls to Congress, the White House, and letters to local papers against such an attack on Iran. Citizen action can stop a war against a recalcitrant president–but it takes real effort. The time to act is now.

February 24, 2007 Posted by | Iran, Israel, just peacemaking | Comments Off on Israel Seeks U.S. Permission to Bomb Iran’s Nuclear Sites