While the Republicans, and more specifically Mitt Romney, continue to serve up fiery chickenhawk rhetoric in regards to attacking Iran, former and current national security officials are speaking out against such an attack with increasing frequency and in no uncertain terms.
Chairman of the Joint Chiefs Martin Dempsey last week
Dempsey said he did not know Iran’s nuclear intentions, as intelligence did not reveal intentions. What was clear, he said, was that the “international coalition” applying pressure on Iran “could be undone if [Iran] was attacked prematurely”. Sanctions against Iran were having an effect, and they should be given a reasonable opportunity to succeed.
Former head of the NSA and CIA director Michael Hayden today
Hayden told the Israeli daily newspaper Haaretz that Israel may not have the military capacity to take out Iran’s nuclear facilities and reiterated his belief that any attack would only delay the Iranian program and perhaps push it toward obtaining nuclear weapons. [...]
Hayden also said there is “still some time” before a decision needs to be made about whether to attack Iran’s nuclear facilities, adding that “real decisions are to be made in 2013 or 2014.”
If you’re going to engage in navel-gazing concerning the foreign and national security policy of the Obama administration, or entertain the idea of not voting in November, you should take into account the fact that President Obama and the Democrats are the only thing standing between us and another war.
Accurate intelligence didn’t matter to Republicans the last time they lead us into a war, and it won’t matter next time either. And they will not even pause to consider your complaints, your pet issues, or your grievances, whatever they may be. They do not care.
The foreign policy employed by this administration was also advocated by the other candidates during the 2008 Democratic primary, and it will undoubtedly be advocated by the next crop of candidates in 2016 as well. The man currently occupying the White House is the closest thing you have or will ever have to an ally.
President Obama reversed a decades-long slump in public trust in Democrats’ ability to handle matters of national security, and he did so while ending a war rather than starting a new one. Matters of national security and foreign policy are now a low-point in polling for Republicans. The issue no longer belongs to them and the world is better off because of it. Or as the president of Ireland recently put it “we’ve gotten away from this warmongering.”
President Obama has done more to advance peace than any other plausible commander in chief would or could have in a single term. And that’s an important distinction, because any responsible discussion of the subject should include the plausible alternatives. And I don’t mean you should consider what your personal idol and pipe-dream candidate would do, because the chances of them ever becoming president are slim to none. If you’re going to tell me President Bernie Sanders or President Dennis Kucinich could do better, I’m going to laugh before reminding you that Sanders voted to keep Guantanamo Bay open.
If Afghanistan reaches its conclusion as planned and we avoid a war with Iran during the president’s second term, the foreign policy of this administration will serve as a guide and base of inspiration to future Democrats for a generation.