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Leon Krauze

Mexico

Leon Krauze is a Mexican blogger and a founder of letraslibres.com. Close.

Leon Krauze

Mexico

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Attack On Iran? It Won't Happen

The Current Discussion:Seymour Hersh reports a $400 million U.S. covert action program against Iran. On a scale of 1 to 10, what's the likelihood of an American or Israeli military attack on Iran before Jan. 20 (Inauguration Day), and why? For extra points, name the date.

I can think of three reasons why George W. Bush will not attack Iran.

The first reason is the economy. With gas prices breaking records in the United States, the economy is bound to be the main issue facing the American electorate in November (with the exception of a terrorist attack happening soon, of course). Just last week, when markets heard of the supposed Israeli preparations for an attack against Iran, oil prices immediately went up an additional four dollars per barrel. Can the Bush administration really afford to send the world into an even deeper energy-related crisis? I doubt it.

The second reason is North Korea. Before the North Korean breakthrough a few days back, the “doves” in the Bush administration had few arguments for the sole use of diplomacy for resolving international crises. Now that Kim Jong Il – can anyone be more insane and unstable than Kim Jong Il? – has finally given into the diplomatic efforts of America and its allies, it's increasingly possible that Iran could follow the same path, especially now that the French are really on board.

The third reason is John McCain. I am sure that McCain will continue to build his case for the presidency on the success of the American enterprise in Iraq. The invasion – or even precision bombardment – of Iran would send Iraq into a tailspin. The Shi'a south would become an even bigger thorn on America’s side and the current improvements in Iraq would immediately become scenes of bloodshed. That would leave McCain with no argument against Obama on Iraq.

Of course, the other scenario is McCain winning in November and the attack occurring after that. That could happen (as would surely be the case in the event of another terrorist attack).

So, if it comes to betting, I would put my money on the attack not happening at all. If it does, it will come after November or, maybe, from Israel itself.

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