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Maybe I can consider this in more familiar terms, as if both sides have guns. Do they use them differently? I at least can't know for sure. What it boils down to for me is which side do you want to win? Being fair and impartial doesn't mean considering that both of the nations are the same and the outcome will be the same if either side wins, with only a different name and flag for the victor.

If the US wins, a rough semblance of the freedom and democracy the "West" is accustomed to will be able to face other existential internal or external threats. If Iran wins, the end. We start over at square one winning back our freedoms. Maybe we start immediately, maybe it takes 1,000 years. If I have to choose, I want the US to win this one. It doesn't matter who started it, who is doing it worse. I would like things that support the regime in Iran to stop supporting that regime (in the most humane way possible). And I would like the US, with all its warts and flaws, to win a cyber war with Iran if one must be fought.

Maybe this all sounds extremely unlikely, but the first step towards a superpower like the USA to lose to Iran is for the USA to not be trying at all, and Iran to be trying very hard. Also nuclear weapons are a great leveler.

Therefore the USA must do two things at minimum. Try to have cybersecurity supremacy over Iran, and try to keep Iran from having nuclear weapons. If both of these objectives can be met we don't need to fight them, we can leave them in peace. If either is not met, this war might have to get very physical very quickly. So right now the sanctions don't look so bad, among available options. Not saying there aren't better options, but it's above my pay grade.




> What it boils down to for me is which side do you want to win? Being fair and impartial doesn't mean considering that both of the nations are the same and the outcome will be the same if either side wins, with only a different name and flag for the victor.

Your argument makes sense, but it starts with a very flawed assumption: that Iran wants to dominate the world. The reality accepted by everyone except the US and its few allies on this issue is that Iran is an extremely defensive country. The current regime, and the country in general, feels threatened in the region, being generally sorrounded by belligerent hostile countries, with the backing of the US (Saudi Arabia and Israel being the most powerful and the most belligerent).

So, if Iran wins, what will actually happen is that Iran will be left alone to function just like any other non-democratic state. Is the regime bad for its people? Yes. Is it better than being at war? Absolutely.

And regarding nuclear weapons, Iran has declared numerous times that it would gladly participate in an agreement, enforced by UN/IANA inspectors, to declare the entire region a nuclear-free area. Israel is blocking any such agreement. Iran has entered deals with the US and other western countries to renounce its nuclear weapons program in exchange for lifting the embargo and other kinds of help. The US has backed up from these deals twice now. The second time, they have not even claimed to have any evidence that Iran is not respecting the deal; and the other parties to the agreement, like the entire rest of 'the West' have in fact remained in the deal, as has Iran, despite the new US sanctions (deemed illegal by the UN).


Iran is already part of an agreement (called the NPT) to not have any nukes ever, and has already violated it. It has no justification to ask for any concession from any other country for it to honour its original signature, much less from countries they have sworn to annihilate. It sounds like they want others to disarm their intended victim for them.


Iran's most rabid enemy illegally owns nuclear weapons, while the world's greatest super power is helping them hide it.

Iran's position makes logical sense, and the best way to ensure they have no reason not to abide by the NPT would be to actually uphold the NPT, not to selectively enforce it against Iran but not the country threatening it.


More accurately, the country Iran is most rabid enemy of. Its 'most rabid' enemy has never had any claim against Iran - it's Iran which has decided to declare total enmity.

So Iran picks a fight, says it wants to 'defend' itself from the enemy it created (instead of burying the hatchet), and further demands the worlds disarms its opponent to make Iran's work easier.

There are a few loan words in the English language for such behaviour like 'chutzpa'. It makes 'logical sense' only if the world sympathizes with aggression which I don't believe it does.

P.S. Said country has never signed the NPT and is therefore not bound by it, making its possession of weapons still 'legal', unlike Iran which has signed the treaty and is therefore bound by it, even when Iran ignored its own signature.

P.S.S. It would make no sense for such an arrangement to not include Pakistan, which has already taken part in past wars in the area. Weird how nobody notices that. Almost like, the idea was to disarm one side to try to give the other a killing advantage.


> Iran has entered deals with the US and other western countries to renounce its nuclear weapons program in exchange for lifting the embargo

Which weapons program? AFAIK current Iranian inspection mechanisms are the most stringent (anywhere ever).


'Most stringent' inspections with the proviso that Iran gets notification in advance, and that most inspections are in support of temporary restrictions. If these restrictions are necessary they should be permanent, otherwise we've got another NK in the future.


The second deal I was talking about is precisely the current one, the JCPOA, which Iran is abiding according to all objective observers.


How can you possibly know this? The JCPOA includes non-public "side deals" with the IAEA. How do you prove the secret fine print doesn't restore what the public large print took away?


> What it boils down to for me is which side do you want to win?

This is a bit simplistic, isn't it? First, the one between Iran and USA doesn't have to be a zero-sum game. Why is it a matter of states winning or losing? I don't recall Iran waging a war against the US, or trying to destroy civil liberties in the West. For example, with the nuclear agreement, both Iran and the US (or Europe) would have benefited- why did the US got out of it then?

Second, the two sides in this game are not necessarily Iran with its model of society and the US with its own model of society. The US is a free and democratic society, but that doesn't mean that their geo-political goals are all about freedom and democracy. In fact, the main rivals of Iran and allies of the US are Saudi Arabia- a country even less democratic than Iran itself- and Israel, a country that while internally free and democratic is illegally occupying a foreign territory and expelling its native population in violation of international law. So the US winning this particular exchange might not necessarily mean improving or preserving the freedom of US society, but making the world a worse place, with more injustice and future grievances. See what has produced the "existential" war against Saddam.


At the moment the people doing the expelling are Iranians (and their allies) in Syria, and they threaten to do it elasewhere. For whatever it's worth, Palestinians are not being expelled, and furthermore, Israeli presence is not illegal according to resolution 242.

In addition, Iran is also even more repressive than SA, because they are killing dissidents outside of their territory, unlike SA.

Then again, I don't see why we should be bothering with this given that the Iran regime is the one shouting 'Death to America'. It's pretty natural for the US to oppose those ideologically hostile to it.


> In addition, Iran is also even more repressive than SA, because they are killing dissidents outside of their territory, unlike SA.

Have you not heard about Jamal Khashoggi? It was a big story a while back.

> It's pretty natural for the US to oppose those ideologically hostile to it.

Chicken or egg? That is, if the US hadn't engaged in regime change operations in Iran and hadn't supported Saddam in attacking Iran, would Iran be hostile towards the US?


Khashoggi was killed inside Saudi embassy, that is, Saudi territory. I'm not excusing it, but had he been warned, he could have just avoided going in. Iran tends to kill people outright on foreign soil.

e.g.

https://www.tellerreport.com/news/--intelligence-service-ira...

It's funny that people think that the mullahs have any grudges against the US becuase the US overthrew a 'socialist atheist'. They didn't like Mosaddegh either and in fact took part in his overthrow. Khomeini's grudge was purely ideological.


> Khashoggi was killed inside Saudi embassy, that is, Saudi territory.

That's generally not really how embassies work, but sure.

> Khomeini's grudge was purely ideological.

As in "all islamic religious hardliners in charge of a country hate the US"? The first gulf war couldn't have anything to do with it?


Sure, the mullahs are really upset that US prevented their arch-enemy Saddam from conquering another country and getting stronger. Now, I wouldn't say "all islamic religious hardliners in charge of a country hate the US", but it sure is common.


My point was that Saddam was acting with US support when he attacked Iran in the first gulf war in the early eighties, back before he got himself on the bad-dictator-list by invading Kuwait.


US did not support the initial invasion, and in fact allowed Israel to supply arms to Iran (!) to stop it. US support for Iraq came later when Iran continued the war after throwing off the Iraqis, because they didn't want to let Iran continue into Iraq.


"That's generally not really how embassies work..."

Someone needs to tell Assange about this, if that isn't how embassies work.


> At the moment the people doing the expelling are Iranians ... For whatever it's worth, Palestinians are not being expelled

How can you say something like this? It's even happening right now, for example these are today's news:

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-israel-palestinians-jerus...

Just imagine the scene:

"Bulldozers accompanied by hundreds of Israeli soldiers and police moved in to Sur Baher, a Palestinian village on the edge of East Jerusalem

Israeli forces cut through a wire section of the barrier in Sur Baher under cover of darkness early on Monday, and began clearing residents from the area.

Floodlights lit up the area as dozens of vehicles brought helmeted security forces into the village

“Since 2 a.m. they have been evacuating people from their homes by force and they have started planting explosives in the homes they want to destroy”


You can always post an eviction story from any country. We need to look at the larger picture: Palestinian population of Jerusalem is increasing both as an absolute and on percentage basis:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demographic_history_of_Jerusal...


> You can always post an eviction story from any country

At 2am in the morning, with floodlights, military and explosives? On a territory that doesn't even legally belong to that state?

The evictions and demolitions purpose is to build a wall:

From Wikipedia: "the border traced by the barrier is more than double the length of the Green Line, with 15% running along it or in Israel, while the remaining 85% cuts at times 18 kilometres (11 mi) deep into the West Bank, isolating about 9% of it, leaving an estimated 25,000 Palestinians isolated from the bulk of that territory."

So Palestinian houses are demolished to make space for the wall, while the wall bends for kilometers to include illegal Israeli settlements built in Palestinian land.


Tertium non datur?

Obama made a deal with the Iranians to stop production of weapons grade nuclear material and to destroy related infrastructure.

This also had the side-effect of strengthening the most reasonable politics within Iran.

But no, I guess this new course undermined the career of too many apparatchiks so the Orange Man was persuaded to kick the table up in the air.

And we’re back to square one, with the loudest monkeys showing their teeth at each other...


"If Iran wins, the end. We start over at square one winning back our freedoms."

You really believe there is a threat of Iran occupying the US and it's the reason for the US policy towards Iran?

Gosh, it's scary that people like you vote to choose the government controlling by far the most powerful military in the world.




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