Whiskey Bar: Spring Time for Khomeini: "the American Conservative (dead tree version) [reports] this:
" 'The Pentagon, acting under instructions from Vice President Dick Cheney's office, has tasked the United States Strategic Command (STRATCOM) with drawing up a contingency plan to be employed in response to another 9/11-type terrorist attack on the United States. The plan includes a large-scale air assault on Iran employing both conventional and tactical nuclear weapons.
" 'Within Iran there are more than 450 major strategic targets, including numerous suspected nuclear-weapons-program development sites. Many of the targets are hardened or are deep underground and could not be taken out by conventional weapons, hence the nuclear option. As in the case of Iraq, the response is not conditional on Iran actually being involved in the act of terrorism directed against the United States.
" 'Several senior Air Force officers involved in the planning are reportedly appalled at the implications of what they are doing -- that Iran is being set up for an unprovoked nuclear attack -- but no one is prepared to damage his career by posing any objections.' "
Billmon: "You have to love that last line. I bet that defense goes over REAL big at their war crime trials.
"Seriously, though, I we should all pray (long and hard) that his is just Dick Cheney trying out Dick Nixon's 'madman theory' -- acting like a genocidal maniac in hopes of convincing the other side that you really might be a genocidal maniac. (like the Chinese generals I mentioned above.)
"It's also possible that this is part of some kind of smokescreen being blown to convince the Frank Gaffneys of the world that the administration isn't about to pull a U-turn on Iran policy. But then why leak it to the neoconphobes at the American Conservative?
"It should be obvious why I badly want to believe that this is a bluff or a ruse. The alternative is that the Vice President of the United States and his trained seal are contemplating the ultimate war crime. And the good little Germans in the Air Force are going right along with it -- lest they injure their promotion potential.
It doesn't get any worse than that."
OK, so this is the ultimate "perfect storm" in the offing -- a war crime of such stupendous magnitude that the U.S. would practically have to commit national suicide to atone. Republicans could not just be swept out at the next election; they would have to be arrested and executed. That such a thing is even plausible is to condemn the political situation of the moment, and that reckless, ignorant, cowardly stupid half of the country, which is ultimately responsible.