Friday, October 14, 2011

Would Obama Start a War with Iran to Get Re-elected?

That is the question that went through my mind immediately when I first heard of the release of the information that a plot by Iran to assassinate the Saudi ambassador on US soil. (See story here. And see Obama talking tough here.) Why would the administration release such information right now?

For three years now the US has been appeasing Iran.
  • When the people rose up in the streets to protest the stolen election of the holocaust-denying, religious fanatic Ahmadinejad, Obama was silent.
  • When news item after news item detailed the relentless Iranian march toward obtaining both nuclear warheads and ICBM's to deliver them, Obama was passive.
  • Meanwhile, Obama was so busy falling all over himself to celebrate Islamic holidays that he didn't bother to issue a statement on the highest Christian holiday of Easter.
Now, has Obama experienced a death-bed conversion? Has the futility of appeasement become apparent all of a sudden even to him? Will he be asking the British government for that bust of Winston Churchill back? Has he suddenly become a neo-con hawk?

"All options are on the table" is diplomatic-speak for "you better shape up or expect some bunker-buster bombs to rain down on your head as you pick up the morning paper one of these days."

What we do know is that Obama' poll numbers are sinking and much too low for him to have a realistic chance of re-election. And without re-election much of his program to move America left-ward is in danger of being rolled back. Certainly his classically Marxist "millionaire and billionaire" class warfare rhetoric has appeased his base, but his base is too small to re-elect him. Without Independents he is toast. See this excellent article by Jay Cost, which explains why.

He won 52% of Independents in 2008 but he did so by pretending to be a centrist. Now he is polling 17% lower among Independents (at 35%) and he knows that trick won't work again. But presidents who are at war tend to win a big sympathy vote because many patriotic Americans want to support the Commander-in-Chief during a time of war.

However, to argue against myself, it is not clear that this dynamic would apply to a president who starts another war in the midst of a recession when the country is already at war. The "hatred of stupidity" factor would likely outweigh the "patriotic my country right or wrong" factor. And he would alienate his base.

Unless . . . the other nation attacked the US first and it was seen as a clearly defensive and totally necessary response. And if it was decisive and, most importantly, quickly victorious, it just might work. If you were Bill Daley or David Axelrod and you thought it was his only hope for winning re-election, what would you advise him to do?

So, are we seeing the beginnings of the laying of a foundation for a narrative that ends with the US (with or without Israel) taking out Iran's nuclear program and maybe weakening the totalitarian theocracy that currently governs the nation as well?

It is much to soon to jump to conclusions. But over the next 13 months, as desperation grows in left-wing circles over the impending Republican election victories and the prospect of a Republican House, a Republican Senate and a Republican President, you had better believe that "all options will be on the table." As it sinks in to the brain trust in the White House and Obama's re-election campaign that they are doomed to lose, anything is possible.

If the socialist community organizer could successfully pose as a moderate centrist to get elected, why couldn't he pose as a neo-con hawk to get re-elected? One is no more absurd than the other.

1 comment:

Peter said...

Oh! I know this one! Just float the USS Maddox near the Gulf of Tonkin.