"There are roads one does not follow.
There are armies one does not strike.
There are cities one does not attack.
There are grounds one does not contest.
There are commands of the sovereign one does not accept."
- Sun Tzu (c. 544 BC – 496 BC), "The Art of War"
"I believe that it [events on the United Airlines plane that crashed on 9/11] was the first counter-attack to World War III."
- George W. Bush, May 5, 2006
"I've told people that, if you're interested in avoiding World War III, it seems like you ought to be interested in preventing them [Iranians] from having the knowledge necessary to make a nuclear weapon."
- George W. Bush, October 17, 2007
U.S. President George W. Bush "threatens humanity with World War III, this time using atomic weapons."
- Fidel Castro, Cuban dictator
"World War III will be a guerrilla information war with no division between military and civilian participation."
- Marshall McLuhan (1911-1980), Canadian thinker
“The unleashed power of the atom has changed everything save our modes of thinking and we thus drift toward unparalleled catastrophe."
- Albert Einstein (1879-1955)
"I know not with what weapons World War III will be fought, but World War IV will be fought with sticks and stones."
- Albert Einstein (1879-1955)
The two greatest human catastrophes of the 20th century were World War I (10 million deaths) and World War II (62 million deaths).
In February 2002, neocon journalist Norman Podhoretz (a leading warmonger who is currently senior adviser to Republican presidential candidate Rudy Giuliani) wrote an article calling for a new World War. He did it again in an article titled "World War IV: How It Started, What It Means, and Why We Have to Win" (Commentary magazine, September 2004), calling for what he called "World War IV", i.e. a war against the country of Iran that he demonized by calling its leaders "Islamofascists", who cannot be trusted with having nuclear weapons as can some other countries in the region that already have them (Israel, Russia, Pakistan, India).
Podhoretz and other fellow neocons label their pet world war "World War IV" because they have decided that the Cold War was really “World War III“.
As a matter of fact, there never was a Third World War between the nuclear-armed USA and the USSR. Indeed, because of the policy of containment and deterrence, such a nuclear holocaust was avoided and the world lived through the last half of the 20th century in relative peace.
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Unless one is a madman, nobody in his right mind would contemplate a nuclear world war that would likely kill hundreds of millions of human beings, and which could bring forth the collapse of civilization, and lead to the extermination of human life on earth. Indeed, nuclear armaments have made total war a crime against humanity and civilization. It is of paramount importance to avoid such a calamity.
But when someone is so deeply wrong and confused in his reading and presentation of history, as Norman Podhoretz seems to be, why would anyone want to listen to such a flawed analyst, irresponsibly calling for a new world war? Well, crazy as it seems, the current sitting American president does invite Podhoretz to the White House to get advice on how he should frame American foreign policy in the Middle East. President George W. Bush went so far as to bestow the Presidential Medal of Freedom to Podhoretz in 2004. Does he really agree with Podhoretz' crackpot ideas about preventive nuclear wars?
What's going on? Is the world getting crazy or what?
Let us remind ourselves that 25 years ago, neocon Podhoretz and other dimwits wanted President Ronald Reagan to launch a (preventive) nuclear war against the Soviet Union. Indeed, in the early '80s, some neocon advisers around Reagan were deluding themselves and were arguing that the Soviet Union was preparing for a pre-emptive attack on the United States. They opposed President Reagan's efforts at rapprochement. They were pushing for the U.S. to achieve ''nuclear dominance'' and argued that only a ''strategy of strength'' matters. — Mr. Reagan ridiculed them with their hairy plan and he was wise enough to dismiss these exceptionally naive and warmongering "advisers".
What is frightening today is that many of the same neocon wackos (Podhoretz, Pipes, Perle, ...etc.) are now advising the current Bush-Cheney administration. With the operative help of Vice president Dick Cheney, they have already succeeded in persuading George W. Bush to invade Iraq, telling him that it would be a "cakewalk" and that the "war will finance itself" out of Iraq's oil revenues. Amazingly, Bush's ears are still open to such wrong-headed advice. Will he be persuaded to launch a campaign of nuclear bombing against Iran, and fall into the neocon trap that President Ronald Reagan avoided?
If we read into Bush's public pronouncements, he may be well advanced in fostering that very idea. Indeed, on October 17th, Bush II speculated aloud, in apocalyptic terms, about getting engaged in "World War III" if Iran does not bend to his wishes about its perfectly legal uranium enrichment program! What is odd is that President George W. Bush seems to be obsessed about getting involved in a World War III, while he is probably the only person on earth who could possibly start one. — This is most eerie.
Last October 25, the Bush-Cheney administration pursued its unilateral approach to international affairs and announced new sanctions against Iran, designating Iran's Revolutionary Guard Corps as a "proliferator of weapons of mass destruction" and its elite Quds Force as a supporter of terrorism. Previously, the Bush-Cheney tandem had labeled Iran's Revolutionary Guard Corps a "terrorist" organization. This is reminiscent of the fall of 2002 when Bush Jr. was cynically swearing on his mother's head that he was doing anything he could to "prevent" a war against Iraq, when it is now known that he had already given the go-ahead to attack Iraq.
Incredibly, the same cynical neocon scenario seems to be at play during the fall of 2007. The Bush-Cheney administration is inching up its gratuitous threats against Iran, while it has stationed three military naval armadas, more than 150 war ships, in or around the Persian Gulf. This represents an act of war in itself. It seems to me that Bush and his real putative father, Dick Cheney, are trying very hard to start a fight, and will seize any opportunity or pretext to launch a hot war against Iran, possibly using nuclear bombs. As experienced senator Robert C. Byrd (D-W.Va.) has said, the Bush-Cheney's aggressive war action "not only echoes the chest-pounding rhetoric which preceded the invasion of Iraq in 2002, but also raises the specter of an intensified effort to make the case for an invasion of Iran."
The Bush-Cheney team is now attempting to push aside Mohamed ElBaradei, head of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), who says that there is no proof that Iran seeks atomic weapons, just as it pushed aside chief U.N. inspector Hans Blix who said, in early 2003, that Iraq had no weapons of mass destruction. The same charade goes on.
No responsible leader starts wars of aggression (this is against international law and the U.N. Charter) and no responsible leader should talk lightly about an immoral World War that could kill millions of people and that could threaten the survival of the planet. Above all, he should not be itching to start one. — Instead, President George W. Bush should be actively working to prevent a nuclear war and to make such a disaster illegal, and not muse aloud how he could personally be involved in one.
Rodrigue Tremblay is a Canadian economist who lives in Montreal; he can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Visit his blog site at: www.thenewamericanempire.com/blog.
Author's Website: www.thenewamericanempire.com/
Check Dr. Tremblay's coming book "The Code for Global Ethics" at: www.TheCodeForGlobalEthics.com/
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