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Not so simple

Reader comment on item: Obama, the Middle East and Islam - An Initial Assessment
in response to reader comment: why US allowed to develop nuke weapon, others country not

Submitted by Canaan (United States), Feb 19, 2009 at 22:42

"Simple question to all, Why US and allies allowed to develop nuke weapon but other countries not?" A year ago, I'd have answered: because the U.S. is the most powerful nation in the world. That's less true today, even less true tomorrow, but to the extent we have the power, we should block proliferation.

By negotiating out of military conflict with the Communist superpowers, the U.S. broke the vicious cycle of world wars. However many flaws in our brief record, it is far better than the era of European hegemony (virtually non-stop war for centuries on end). I believe, in our place, England and France would have blundered into a Third World War with Russia and China. We didn't. That's our moral authority to assert leadership on nuclear weapons--our record of avoiding World War.

The premise of your question is a fantasy, that this is primarily a philosophical question. Would you ask, "A simple question: why do nations fight wars?" If you're asking specifically about Iran: first, to my knowledge, Iran's position is that they are not seeking nuclear weapons and only want nuclear energy. So why argue their right to acquire nukes?

Second, try being pragmatic rather than philosophical, because no philosophy will dictate Israel's actions. Iran might dangerously miscalculate Israel's intentions: 'an invasion would be a disaster so they won't dare.' But Israel might decide, 'even though an invasion will be a disaster, nevertheless we have to use force.' Let's not go there. Let's not even get close. There are only two possibilities: either Iran will effectively assure Israel that their nuclear program is only for energy, or Israel will go to war. And by the way, let Iran milk their nuclear poker chip for all its worth before they cash it in--they outsmarted George Bush and they should be compensated. I'm praying Iran plays this one smart.

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Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

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