Thursday, January 11, 2007

Onward to Iran?

Updated below.

While most of the president's speech last night regurgitated previous "plans for victory," there were a couple new, and frightening items. If we connect the dots correctly, the U.S. is about to go to war with Iran.

There's this:

We are also taking other steps to bolster the security of Iraq and protect American interests in the Middle East. I recently ordered the deployment of an additional carrier strike group to the region. We will expand intelligence sharing - and deploy Patriot air defense systems to reassure our friends and allies.

As pa2006voter notes:
You don't use a 17 foot long surface launched missile with large radars and other trucks that tracks incoming aircraft, helicopters and long range missiles in an urban street battles. You would use it to defend against incoming Iranian aircraft and Scud missiles.

And there is this:
Succeeding in Iraq also requires defending its territorial integrity -- and stabilizing the region in the face of the extremist challenge. This begins with addressing Iran and Syria. These two regimes are allowing terrorists and insurgents to use their territory to move in and out of Iraq. Iran is providing material support for attacks on American troops. We will disrupt the attacks on our forces. We will interrupt the flow of support from Iran and Syria. And we will seek out and destroy the networks providing advanced weaponry and training to our enemies in Iraq.

Bush seems to be saying he intends to start one or two new wars. And he put a Navy guy in charge of CENTCOM.

The Iranian War may be starting already. There are reports of a U.S. raid on the Iranian Consulate in Irbil.
U.S.-led multinational forces detained six Iranians Thursday at Tehran's diplomatic mission in the northern city of Irbil, Iraqi officials said, as President Bush accused Iran and Syria of aiding militants and promised to "interrupt" the flow of support as part of his new war strategy.

The U.S. military said it had taken six people into custody in the Irbil region but made no mention of a raid on the Iranian consulate.

The forces entered the building about 3 a.m., detaining the Iranians and confiscating computers and documents, two senior local Kurdish officials said, speaking on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the information. Irbil is a city in the Kurdish-controlled north, 220 miles from Baghdad.

[. . .]

At the Pentagon, a senior U.S. military official said the building was not a consulate and did not have any diplomatic status. The six Iranians were taken in a "cordon-and-knock" operation, said the official who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to release the information.

Foreign embassies and diplomatic outposts are legally the foreign soil of the country represented. The Pentagon says the building had no diplomatic status, but Iraqi officials say it did. This action might very well be an act of war. The Bush administration appears to have condoned the very action the U.S. condemned Iran for - attacking diplomatic missions in violation of international law.

Bush already gave the world permission to torture our soldiers. He may have just given every country in the world justification for attacking U.S. diplomatic posts and embassies, and taking Americans hostage.

Finally, there's the last line of the speech:
We go forward with trust that the Author of Liberty will guide us through these trying hours.

Compare that note to the last lines of FDR's fireside chat on December 9, 1941:
And in the difficult hours of this day -- through dark days that may be yet to come -- we will know that the vast majority of the members of the human race are on our side. Many of them are fighting with us. All of them are praying for us. But, in representing our cause, we represent theirs as well -- our hope and their hope for liberty under God.

This is not good.

Update: The rumors have started.
Washington intelligence, military and foreign policy circles are abuzz today with speculation that the President, yesterday or in recent days, sent a secret Executive Order to the Secretary of Defense and to the Director of the CIA to launch military operations against Syria and Iran.

The President may have started a new secret, informal war against Syria and Iran without the consent of Congress or any broad discussion with the country.