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Follow the Rial

Bombings from Beirut to Buenos Aires. A spate of terror attacks in Thailand, New Delhi, Lagos, Nairobi. A murder in Mykonos. A TWA airline hijacking. A plot to bomb a political opposition rally in France. A hostage taking and political assassination in Lebanon. Narcotrafficking in Central and South America. Narco-tunnels along the Mexican-American border. Election interference in the Americas. A Gazan missile war against Israel. Shia militias operating in Syria. Covert intelligence operations in Brazil, Paraguay, Chile, Colombia, Guyana, Trinidad, Tobago, Suriname. As well a tranche of illicit operations in the southern half of the Western Hemisphere.

You know which question comes next. And the answer to what these incidences, far-removed and seemingly disparate, have in common, is more than their malefic nature. They are united by a common benefactor, as criminal and ignominious.

At home, the Islamic Republic continues to turn out a sordid slate of human crimes and injustices. Public hangings are still given as lurid example for the wayward or disobedient (with a modern twist, as it were: the offenders—more likely the victims—are raised from the neck by a crane). In as archaic a fashion, without modern improvement, women accused for adultery are wrapped in a white sackcloth, buried up to the breastbone, then pummeled by a crowd of judges and peers—and often, family—with stones and sticks until dead. (Does one, I wonder, fix the veil back into modest position when it comes undone amidst the head-pounding?) Homosexuals, like adulterers, are given the stone or the rope. Under this black-robed arrangement, what needs enriching is the social and private lives of Iranian citizens, before anything else.

Internationally, Iran allocates—you might say, consecrates—a substantial tranche of their GDP, some tens of billions of dollars (this despite the sanctions), to the promulging of holy war. Follow the rial, and a transnational terror network discloses itself. Iran has provided either the cash, conventional weapons, or training for operations— as well as refuge for their operators— which kill Americans and their allies.

With this medieval program before us, it strikes a little oddly when it is still asked why it is that the Jewish State can retain a nuclear defense program, whereas the Islamic Republic is denied the honour.

Ought we not to make every hard effort, diplomatic and militant, rejecting neither option for national or political comfort, to prevent this medievalism from advancing into the Millennial age?

The ‘Iran deal’ that the Biden Administration endevours to reconstitute amounts to no ‘peaceful and diplomatic solution’ to a humanitarian exigency–nothing so hopeful and maudlin as that.

The standing arrangement, with its infamous ‘sunset clause’ (which effectively nullifies de jure the stipulations Iran was meanwhile never abiding to de facto), will ultimately ensure just what it so ineffectively seeks to preclude – a fusion of 7th century ethics with the 21st’s weaponry, the supplanting of the scimitar with the warhead.

‘Sunset,’ I believe, is the mot juste.

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America and Israel (‘Big Satan’ and ‘Little Satan,’ respectively) are not alone in regarding a nuclearized Iran with alarm; the prospect is one which convulses the entire Middle East (and indeed is a nexus where Israeli and Arab interests squarely, however roundaboutly, meet).

And here is one of those secrets we term ‘well-known’: canvass any of the peripheral Sunni Arab states with the above question, and the answer comes uniform and fervent. Beyond their public hissings against the blasphemous ‘Zionist entity in Palestine’ to upkeep Qur’anic face and Islamic muscle, I am certain that, retiring from the podium to their private palaces, muqata’as, compounds, and courts, most Mideast potentates would be quite relieved to be relieved of a nuclear-equipped Iran—and, what is more, quite content to have Israel do the relieving. (We might instance here Israel’s aerial dismantling of Iraq’s nuclear program in June of 81’, which was greeted—by the West included—not as an act for the prevention of terrorism, but as an unwonted example of its exercise at state level.)

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This nuclear deal doesn’t only concern fantastic weapons and their acquirement by those with fantastic notions as to their use. The bare acquirement is an end in itself (the actual use of such destructive weapons often being more detrimental to the ultimate, as in non-eschatological, interests of the country which affects a willingness to employ them). The use, that is, does not threaten as immediately as their use to blackmail; Such muscle moves weight just by the flexing. Even an Iran which merely sits on her weapons sends a profound disturbance down the geopolitical long table.

Because Iran is dictatorial papi to a vicious brood of anti-Israel ideological misfits, you can’t be as tough as you would have been, or should have been, or should like to be with Hezbollah (funded as they are by the rial), Hamas (subsidized by the mullahs), Islamic Jihad (banked by Tehran), or various other militant proxies doing ill and harm around the world, the financial backing of whose operations go back, with damnable predictability, to the Mullahs’ unhallow coffers.

And as with misfit children, as all adults know of children, if you seek to placate them, or mollify them, or indulge them, or temporize with them, you ensure the perpetuation of their tantrums. And the tantrums of Iran’s illegitimate children are—in the very worst declension of the words—explosive and terrific.

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About the Author
American by birth; Israeli by birthright. TLVivian by residence. By the year, enough of them. Haim, namely.
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