Wednesday, December 5

Interesting ideas about nuclear threats over on Clueless Comments:

Should we rule out use of nuclear weapons? Never. We sent a clear warning to Saddam before the Gulf War that if he used chemical or biological weapons against us we would retaliate in a way that, in the words of envoy Jim Baker, "would take Iraq 100 years to recover from." The implication of that threat was unmistakable. The same warning will have to be given again before we deal with Iraq this time around. The problem is that this time Saddam knows that the destruction of his regime is our prime war aim. In the Gulf War, he knew that we only intended to eject his troops from Kuwait.

I suspect that this time Saddam will be told by Israel that any imminent chemical, biological, or nuclear threat perceived by Israel may result in an Isreals first strike nuclear obliteration of Iraq or at least of those places in Iraq where such weapons are suspected to be located. Israel lacks the luxury of "defense-in-depth." It cannot absorb a first strike secure in its ability to survive and retaliate. I suspect that lights are burning late in Washington as these "next step" issues are pondered.
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