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A serious conversation about Iran

That's what John Johns wants from Republican presidential candidates. Here are some of the issues he raises:

The problem with these arguments is that they flatly ignore or reject outright the best advice of America’s national security leadership. Former Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, retired chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Mike Mullen, former congressman Admiral Joe Sestak and former CENTCOM Commander General Anthony Zinni are only a few of the many who have warned us to think carefully about the repercussions of attacking Iran. Two months ago, Sestak put it bluntly: “A military strike, whether it’s by land or air, against Iran would make the aftermath of the Iraqi invasion look like a cakewalk with regard to the impact on the United States’ national security.”

Meir Dagan, the recently retired chief of Israel’s Mossad, shares the assessment of the Americans cited above. He noted earlier this year that attacking Iran “would mean regional war” and went on to say that arguments for military strikes were “the stupidest thing I have ever heard.”

I've posted quite a bit on this issue before. But I just wanted to highlight this because he actually quotes officials confirming some of the arguments against striking Iran. I also wanted to point out a question that doesn't get asked of these candidates, which is simply, why.

Why is it "unacceptable" that Iran obtain nuclear weapons? I mostly agree that it would be a bad thing if they did. But I want them to spell out exactly why they think it would be unacceptable. Just claiming it is doesn't make you right. You actually have to give a reason why you support a certain position. You especially need to give reasons when you are proposing that we should bomb a country. You need to be able to give a response to a military official who says that could create huge blow back in the region and possibly to our national security.

I haven't heard any serious answers to these questions. And I highly doubt many of the Republican candidates have serious answers. That's a problem when they are trying to be commander in chief. The lack of knowledge they have displayed is similar to that of the Bush administration. And that didn't work out well.