Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Your NIE and You

Caution (Foreign Policy) - Matt Yglesias

There's not much more that I can add to Matt's assessment of those who are unhappy with the NIE conclusions that Iran has halted its nuclear weapons program since 2003. There is just one little things however--the same argument was made about earlier NIEs and Iraq's weapons program five years ago. Now had the invasion of Iraq led to the uncovering of a covert nuclear program then the war supporters could convincingly argue that the new NIE is wrong and we should take a more aggressive approach with Iran. But reality has that funny way of not always agreeing with your truth. The argument (re: mushroom clouds) was made in 2002 and proven disastrously false in the following year. We were told not to believe the intelligence assessments and international organizations who said that Iraq had abandoned its program long ago. We were told that the danger was imminent. And we were told that the removal of a psychotic dictator would led to a more peaceful and progressive region. If the Bush administration wishes to make the same argument again concerning Iran then they have that right to do so. But I honestly don't think that the American public is that gullible after four years of being a foreign occupier. So for those who disagree with the new NIE, go right ahead, but you better bring your evidence and your balls to the table if you want to win the argument this time.

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