Thursday, January 12, 2012

Firing People (Not The Corporate Kind) Is What Gladdens Willard's Heart. Santorum Gets A Woody From Assassinations


I suspect it won't be easy to find many people-- Glenn Greenwald and Ron Paul, perhaps more quietly, excepted-- who will care too much that another Iranian scientist was assassinated this week. In fact, I suspect most Americans who hear about it will feel more celebratory than remorseful.
Mostafa Ahmadi-Roshan, an academic who also worked at the Natanz uranium enrichment facility, and another unidentified person were killed in the attack.

The blast happened after a motorcyclist stuck an apparent bomb to the car.

Several Iranian nuclear scientists have been assassinated in recent years, with Iran blaming Israel and the US.

Both countries deny the accusations.

Iran's Vice-President Mohammad Reza Rahimi told state television that the attack against Mr Ahmadi-Roshan would not stop "progress" in the country's nuclear programme.

He called the killing "evidence of [foreign] government-sponsored terrorism."

Local sources said Wednesday's blast took place at a faculty of Iran's Allameh Tabatai university.

Two others were reportedly also injured in the blast, which took place near Gol Nabi Street, in the north of the capital.

Ron Paul and, to a lesser extent, Jon Huntsman, have been making the only significant contributions to a rational foreign policy debate of any of the misanthropes running for the GOP nomination. This week, Atlantic senior editor Ta-Nehisi Coates explained how.
It doesn't lie in the substance of his foreign policy views (which I'm largely but not wholly in sympathy with) but in the way he explains them. Paul routinely performs a simple thought experiment: He tries to imagine how the world looks to people other than Americans.

This is such a radical departure from the prevailing American mindset that some of Paul's critics see it as more evidence of his weirdness. A video montage meant to discredit him shows him taking the perspective of Iran. After observing that Israel and America and China have nukes, he asks about Iranians, "Why wouldn't it be natural that they'd want a weapon? Internationally they'd be given more respect."

Can somebody explain to me why this is such a crazy conjecture about Iranian motivation? Wouldn't it be reasonable for Iranian leaders, having seen what happened to nukeless Saddam Hussein and nukeless Muammar Qaddafi, to conclude that maybe having a nuclear weapon would get them more respectful treatment?

Tuesday 40% of Republican primary voters in New Hampshire voted for the two candidates who have been campaigning against the war, Paul and Hunstman. And 9% voted for raving lunatic Rick Santorum. In a more thoughtful society Santorum would be undergoing mental health therapy instead of pretending to be running for president.
"On occasion scientists working on the nuclear program in Iran turn up dead. I think that's a wonderful thing, candidly," said Rick Santorum at a recent campaign stop in Greenville, South Carolina.

But it isn't just dead Iranian scientists that gladden Santorum's heart.

He continued: "I think we should send a very clear message that if you are a scientist from Russia, North Korea, or from Iran and you are going to work on a nuclear program to develop a bomb for Iran, you are not safe."

Santorum offers these comments while Defense Secretary Leon Panetta is in Pyongyang conducting diplomatic talks with North Korea. Panetta is trying to bring North Korea back to its former commitment to disarmament in exchange for foreign aid and the negotiation has been difficult.

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