Last week, Iran’s President Mahmoud Amadinejad said Tehran would have “no problem” agreeing on a deal to send its enriched uranium abroad for further enrichment. But today, Iran told the IAEA that it would back out of the deal and begin enriching its uranium stockpile in Iran.
On Fox News today, John Bolton declared that “Iran simply has no intention of being talked out of its nuclear weapons program” and that “very severe sanctions” will not work. Later, when host Gregg Jarrett asked if military action is “the only answer,” Bolton agreed:
JARRETT: Is military force probably in the end the only answer?
BOLTON: There are two outcomes, one is Iran getting its nuclear weapons, the other is Israel or somebody uses military force to stop it. That’s where we are.
Bolton has been calling for military strikes on Iran to eliminate its nuclear program for sometime, despite claiming that he “always said, that the use of force against Iran’s nuclear program is deeply unattractive.” Last year, he said that “targeted force” is the “only option.”
But Bolton conveniently never discusses the sobering consequences of military action on Iran. Defense Secretary Robert Gates has said war with Iran would be “disastrous” and “the last thing we need.” “There is no military option that does anything more than buy time,” Gates said last year. Retired Gen. Anthony Zinni answered war hawks like Bolton calling for military action against Iran:
After you’ve dropped those bombs on those hardened facilities, what happens next? … [E]ventually, if you follow this all the way down, eventually I’m putting boots on the ground somewhere. And like I tell my friends, if you like Iraq and Afghanistan, you’ll love Iran.
A top defense official said an attack probably would “incentivize the Iranians to go all the way to weaponize” their nuclear material and have “a number of destabilizing” consequences for the region. Bolton actually thinks attacking Iran “would lead to greater stability in the region” but that if anything goes wrong, a simple “campaign of public diplomacy” will sort everything out.