The neoconservatives Weekly Standard has proclaimed Irans nuclear program is the central crisis of the Bush presidency (I dont know what they call the Iraq War). Op-ed columnist Niall Ferguson warns that unless America carries out a preemptive military strike, there may be a full-scale nuclear war in the Middle East by August 2007 ( Los Angeles Times, 1/16/06). Presidential hopeful, John McCain, has made his bid to be the neoconservatives puppet in 2008, by proclaiming, There is only one thing worse than the United States exercising a military option and that is a nuclear-armed Iran. And, of coursethe obligatory Hitler comparison:
If Iran gets safely and unmolested to nuclear status, it will be a threshold moment in the history of the world, up there with the Bolshevik Revolution and the coming of Hitler. --Times Online, 1/27/06
I dont think Ive heard so many threatening predictions since the Bush Administration was selling the Iraq War. They were lying then, and there is even less reason to believe them now. To be fair, though, I did a little research into what Iran is doing and how it threatens world peace. To my surprise, I found that Iran is a real threat to America, but it has nothing to do with nuclear weapons.
Irans [nuclear] program is in shambles, and the people who read all the intelligence know that. If anybody blows up Bushehr [reactor], they are wasting their money. --Amin Tarzi, Center for Nonproliferation Studies at the Monterrey Institute in California, Christian Science Monitor, 2/21/02
Iran offers no nuclear threat. There is not the slightest evidence that it has the centrifuges necessary to enrich uranium to weapons-grade material. The head of the IAEA, Mohamed ElBaradei, has repeatedly said his inspectors have found nothing to support American and Israeli claims. --John Pilger, New Statesman, 2/13/06
Bourse? What is a Bourse, and why is the most powerful nation on earth afraid of it?
A Bourse is simply a European-type stock exchange. To understand how a stock exchange in Iran can possibly be a threat to world peace, we have to go back a few years.
In the early 1970s, after it became clear that the U.S. Government did not have enough gold to back all the dollars it had printed, our government made a deal with the ruling family in Saudi Arabia . The U.S. Government promised to support the House of Sauds power, if Saudi Arabia agreed to accept only U.S. dollars for its oilthe rest of OPEC was to do the same.
Everything was great, as long as U.S. dollars were the only acceptable payment for oil. Other nations would need more and more U.S. dollars as their need for oil increased; and the dollar would remain the dominant currency in the world.
In 2000, Saddam Hussein defied the U.S. and demanded euros in payment for Iraqs oil. Suddenly, Iraq was a danger to world peace, and the U.S. had to come to the rescue. Two months after the invasion, Iraqi oil was once again being sold for U.S. dollars, and Bush declared, Mission Accomplished.
In June 2004, Iran announced its intention to create an Iranian oil Bourse, which would trade oil for euros, rather than U.S. dollars. It is tentatively scheduled to begin in March 2006. By doing this, Iran will be in direct competition with Londons International Petroleum Exchange and the New York Mercantile Exchangeboth of which are owned by U.S. corporations.
If Irans Oil Bourse is successful, economist Krassimir Petrov from Ohio State University predicts: