Whether it's Castro or Chavez, the Sandinistas or Saddam, political expediency requires the creation of handy villains, a reality apparently not lost on the Obama Administration
Willie Horton or Ricky Ray Rector? De-legitimizing Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is one aspect of the ill-advised campaign initiated by the previous administration designed to culminate in widespread regime change among Mid-East nations. But could it also turn out to be a tool used to help Obama in 2012?
"We should invade their countries, kill their leaders and convert them to Christianity" Ann Coulter
Iran is all that's left.
First it was Gulf War 1.0; 1990's Operation Desert Storm - during which Saudi Arabia was co-opted for the ostensible purpose of "rescuing" the House of Saud from the dark potential of Saddam Hussein's evil clutches. This was followed 13 years later by the killing of Saddam after seizing control of what remained of the land he ruled for decades, in Gulf War 2.0; Operation Iraqi Freedom. Today, the only nation within that "volatile" and oil-rich Mid-East region left undone is Iran, which, after Iraq's takedown, is now geographically sealed off; surrounded by U.S. satellite states Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Iraq, as well as our former adversary, Russia, and is isolated both economically and politically from most of Europe and the western hemisphere.
Apparently, though, this isolation is not enough; especially since Iran, prompted perhaps, by a foreboding sense of awareness of what's long been going on around it, started harping about developing nuclear weapons. As a result, as one of two leftover members of George W. Bush's ill-conceived "axis of evil" clique of "rogue" nation-states, Iran has become subject to increased marginalization and the likely acceleration in the course of a domino theory originally conceived to "democratize" that specific Mid-East region and drive yet another nail in the coffin designed to bury the notion of Arab self-determination and the pursuit of any strategic interest that conflicts with those of the United States and its allies.
As it turns out, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's election as President of the Islamic Republic of Iran in 2005 was an ideal turn of events in the relation to the U.S. government's pursuit of those goals. His antics have set the stage for a relatively seamless transfer of public hostility from Iraq to Iran. How dare he defiantly attempt to arm his nation in a fashion similar to that which the U.S. sees fit for itself and its Mid-East allies such as Pakistan and Israel? Moreover, who is Ahmadinejad to have so insolently meddled into U.S. military affairs in neighboring Iraq during the war? And how dare such a comparatively insignificant Islamic leader so brazenly question the legitimacy of the Jewish state and imply support for its annihilation?
Apparently, from both the present and previous administrations' perspective, the response to all this is: who cares? From a political standpoint, all that matters is that the Iranian President's bug-eyed vitriol and fierce nationalistic posturing provides more than enough juice for both administrations to justify taking Ahmadinejad's contentious saber-rattling - which, like Saddam's is most likely offered for Iranian public consumption - as serious; dead serious.
While Iran probably shouldn't be considered a pushover in a military sense, for all intents and purposes, Ahmadinejad's strident diatribes, while not to be ignored, should probably be regarded the way one would the outbursts of a child with a pathological need for attention. Instead, they provide the plausibility needed to legitimately promote the Iranian leader as now ahead of Osama bin Laden as America's boogey man du jour; as Saddam's replacement - someone who, for the sake of world safety, must be put in check, with the added bonus of establishing a justifiable framework for yet another exercise in American imperialism.