History's End

History will end only when Man does

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  • Friday, July 21, 2006

    The Whole Enchilada

    I am become engaged in a discussion over at The Belmont Club, concerning the Battle in/for Baghdad, and Iranian involvement. You can find the post and comments here. Here is my comment thus far, I have saved the second (Wretchard asks that we limit our posts to two , if possible) for later:
    Why do you think that Iran so desperately wants Nuclear Weapons? Not to use them on Israel. That means certain death. No, to use them on the damned, treacherous Sunnis of course. Destroying Israel isn't enough for the Mullahs. They want the whole enchilda. That means reversing a thousand years of history, and turning Shi'ite Islam into the dominate sect. Take out the Sunnis, then destroy Israel. That's the strategy. Nuclear weapons are key to their victory against the Sunnis. The Mullahs see nukes as the key element to keep the US out of things. The US effort in Iraq has, unfortunately, helped them in this regard. However, things aren't over yet.

    This comment references, indirectly, my argument concerning Iran's goal of a nuclear wall, which can be found in these two posts. I am now going to try and clarify what I said before, and what it means in light of recent events.

    Iran leaders are not merely content with the destruction of Israel. Most everyone who listens with a serious ear to Iran focuses only on the avowed hatred of the state of Israel, and the wish of the Mullahs that it be destroyed. The see the Mullah's drive to acquire nuclear weapons, and they believe that Iran wants nukes in order to destroy Israel. That view, while certainly better than the ostrich mentality displayed by some on the political left, is in fact incomplete. They are not thinking big enough. Iran wants the whole enchilada (That link takes you to a site which has a fairly good map of the Muslim world).

    Iran is seeking to undo centuries worth of history, and restore Shi'ite Islam to dominance in the Muslim world. Its quest for nuclear weapons is one of the primary steps to the Mullah's achieving their goals. Nuclear weapons allow the Mullahs several advantages:
    A) They are seen as a way of keeping the US out of the fight
    B) Possessing nuclear weapons provides a certain prestige, important in a shame-based culture which dominates the Islamic world
    C) Nuclear weapons can be used to threaten other Islamic, Sunni states, to keep them out of conflicts. That way, Iran can approach each nation one at a time, rather than have all of them gang up on it.

    The US has unfortunately, and unintentionally, aided Iran to a degree with its decision to remove Saddam Hussein from power in Iraq. Saddam was seen by many a bulwark against Iran, and it was for that reason he wasn't removed back in '91. Forget the Highway of Death, it was all about regional politics. The other Arab states didn't like the idea of a democratic Iraq, because it would be a Shi'ite dominated Iraq, and hence likely to side with Iran. Shi'ites hold considerably more political power in Iraq now, and perhaps even dominate the political scene to a degree. However, a broad coalition exists. This Iran is seek to address. How? By stirring up Sectarian violence, of course. The reason spat of Shia attacks against Sunnis have been orchestrated by Iran, in order to get the Sunnis to try and fight back. The Insurgency has mostly been defeated, but Sectarian violence is still a problem. What I think Iran is trying to accomplish is to force the Sunni's out of Iraq as a whole. Drive them out, and Shi'ites become a much larger part of the voting bloc, and so too is that part of the Shi'ite electorate with Iranian/Khomeinist sympathies. Iran, and not Al Qaeda, is the major stumbling block in Iraq now.

    Lebanon is another country where Iran seeks to expand its influence. Hizb'allah is Iran's proxy in this regard, and has been acting to further Iran's interests. My speculation on Iran and Hizb'allahs intentions is that Hizb'allah deliberately picked a fight with Israel, knowing that Israel's response would cause significant damage in Lebanon. The hope, the plan was that Israel would be limited by external political forces and thus not be able to push into Lebanon and finish Hizb'allah off, or at least weaken it severely. The end plan was for the Lebanese government to be weakened and discredited, so that Hizb'allah could, either through ballots or bullets, seek to dominate the country politically, at least, more so than it was doing before. While Shi'ite Islam only compromises about 15% of all Muslims worldwide, that doesn't mean it can't assume control politically. Iraq was only about 15-20% Sunni, but Saddam lead it with Sunni Muslims as his main political supporters. Similar can be done elsewhere by the Shia. They can use force and threats to cower the majority into accepting their rule. Then, when in charge, the Shi'ites can push their radical Khomeinist ideology, and eventually sway Muslims away from the Sunni camp. Any serious Sunni resistance can be met with nuclear fire. Israel is scheduled for destruction, of course, just after Shi'ite Islam has started to make its comeback. The Mullahs need Iran as their base for a while yet, and they know any attempt to destroy Israel would result in their, and Iran's, destruction. They are patient men, because after all, Allah is on their side.

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