It is interesting to see all the times that there could have been a negotiated settlement with Iran. At least it seems that there will be an upcoming meeting with the US and other countries with Iran and also Syria on the situation in Iraq. This is the first sign of US willingness to sit down and talk with either country.
This article can be found on the web at
Collision Course With Iran
by REP. DENNIS J. KUCINICH
[posted online on February 26, 2007]
President Bush has claimed the Iranian government is supplying deadly
weapons to fighters in Iraq and that those weapons are being used to
kill US troops in Iraq. This sounds horrific and frightening--and that
is the point. The Administration is preparing for a military strike
against Iran. The justification chosen by the Administration is the
one circumstance in which a President could bypass Congress and still
wage a military conflict.
The intelligence backing up these assertions is questionable. The
sources were anonymous. Since the briefing, the Administration has
backed away from the assertion made by Pentagon briefers the day
before that Tehran was behind these weapons transfers. No new evidence
has been presented. But the President, the Defense Secretary and the
Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff all repeat the questionable
The newly claimed grievance with Iran could be used to satisfy section
2(c) of the 1973 War Powers Resolution, which states that the
President can introduce armed forces into a conflict or a national
emergency created by an attack upon the armed forces. The President
seems to have laid the groundwork for an attack on Iran while avoiding
This Administration has set a collision course with Iran. Time and
again, it has refused to enter into direct diplomatic talks with Iran.
• After the attacks on the United States on September 11, 2001, the
Iranian government signaled to the Administration a willingness to
cooperate with the United States, including cooperation with the
overthrow of the Taliban in Afghanistan. But in January 2002,
President Bush labeled Iran a member of the "axis of evil" in his
State of the Union address.
• In early 2003, Iran offered to enter into dialogue with the United
States regarding several outstanding US-Iran issues, including full
transparency of all nuclear facilities; the cessation of support of
Palestinian opposition groups; transformation of Hezbollah into a
political organization; coordination of counterterrorism efforts;
cooperation with political stabilization in Iraq; and the acceptance
of the Arab League "Beirut Declaration"--a comprehensive peace,
including the establishment of normal relations with Israel. The
United States did not respond to this "grand bargain" offered by Iran.
• Also in 2003, the United States refused to join France, Britain and
Germany (the EU-3) in a diplomatic effort to curb Iran's nuclear
• In November 2005, the US Ambassador to Iraq received permission to
begin a diplomatic dialogue with Iran on the issue of Iraqi stability.
The Iranians accepted the offer; however, no talks materialized.
• On May 8, 2006, the Administration said it would support a renewed
diplomatic overture by the EU-3. At the same time, the Administration
ignored a letter from President Ahmadinejad to President Bush.
• On May 31, 2006, the Administration said it would join the EU-3
talks but would not negotiate with Iran until Iran agreed, ahead of
the talks, to abide by US demands.
• On November 29, 2006, President Ahmadinejad sent an open letter to
the American people. The Bush Administration refused to respond.
• The White House is now selectively leaking intelligence to set the
stage for a military attack on Iran.
With Democrats in charge of the House and Senate, the President might
have trouble starting another war. In light of the vote by the House
of Representatives to disapprove of the President's escalation in Iraq
and the mounting opposition to the war in Iraq, the President's new
assertions about Iran hold the key to an attempt to bypass
Congressional approval for another military conflict.
There are additional reasons to believe the President is setting us on
a path to another war. In his primetime address to the nation last
month, the President ordered a second battle group led by the aircraft
carrier USS John Stennis to the Gulf. The Administration has armed
Iran's Arab neighbors with Patriot missiles, sent minesweepers to the
Persian Gulf and ordered an increase in the national strategic oil
reserve to guard against potential oil embargoes.
It was not long ago when Iran was portrayed as a nuclear threat. But
the news of a diplomatic breakthrough with North Korea changed what
the Administration could say about Iran. For North Korea really
possesses nuclear weapons, while Iran is five to ten years away from
the ability to produce the fissile material to have even one nuclear
bomb. Yet the United States was able to use diplomacy with North
Korea. Obviously, diplomacy could be applied to the Iran situation as
well. Instead, the Administration is escalating tensions with Iran,
laying the groundwork for an attack and attempting to make a case to
bypass Congressional authorization.