I am always puzzled when I read commentaries like this one from Charles Krauthammer. There is an almost frantic tone of issuing a wake-up call, but one has to ask, wake up to what action? So there is a mad man in charge of Iran. He's about to obtain nuclear weapons. He was democratically elected. He paints, "Israel must be obliterated" on his missiles. So what are we supposed to do about this?
He acknowledges that the chances of anything happening in the United Nations is nil. Yet we are supposed to support the United Nations, and our lack of enthusiastic participation so far, or our taking measures into our own hands when the United Nations fails to act, has been considered bad behavior. We could bomb their nuclear facilities, as is Israel's wont, or take out their president in an assassination, but these would constitute military actions and lead to a war. But war is bad. It seems to me that if we do anything except ask very nicely in the United Nations, the same commentators will take us to task for militarism or being cowboys, and will start publishing the American body count on day two.
The same issue occurs with respect to a bad conscience about our actions or inactions in Rwanda. We feel badly, and wring our hands about standing by while Rwandans killed Rwandans, but what were we supposed to have done? The United Nations acted as the United Nations always acts. Nothing else could have been realistically expected. Does anyone really think that Americans would have tolerated the sending of American troops to rescue black Rwandans? Do we think that it would have been a quick in and out operation? Really, the murderers are on the street with their machetes, and what kind of effective action could have been taken other than sending troops?
I would love to know what Charles Krauthammer thinks we should actually do about the Iranian President.