In response to:

Why the War Party Fears Hagel

wpqr Wrote: Dec 28, 2012 12:31 PM
Here is an excerpt from an article that appeared on Fox News last September: "The U.N. atomic agency has received new and significant intelligence over the past month that Iran has moved further toward the ability to build a nuclear weapon, diplomats tell The Associated Press.They say the intelligence shows that Iran has advanced its work on calculating the destructive power of an atomic warhead through a series of computer models that it ran sometime within the past three years." Do you believe categorically that Iran is not trying to build a nuclear weapon or that a nuclear Iran is not a trheat to the United States?
JustMC Wrote: Dec 28, 2012 1:09 PM
And they're only a year away from a weapon. Just like they have been for the last 20 years.

To-morrow, to-morrow...
wpqr Wrote: Dec 28, 2012 12:54 PM
Here is a further excerpt from the article.
"Because computer modeling work is normally accompanied by physical tests of the components that go into a nuclear weapon, it would also buttress IAEA fears outlined in detail in November that Tehran is advancing its weapons research on multiple fronts".
The question is, what is Iran trying to accomplish? What is their end game? Are they rational actors or a fanatical regime of "12th imamers" who are trying to bring on an armageddon? A war with Iran could have dire consequences, but a nuclear armed Iran could be catastrophic.

Corbett_ Wrote: Dec 28, 2012 12:41 PM
However, if we keep threatening them, we may give them the incentive to build one. After all, they see how North Korea has become safe from invasion by building a bomb. If we make them think that we may invade, I can see that they would want to build a nuke. Not otherwise.
Corbett_ Wrote: Dec 28, 2012 12:40 PM
Wpqr -- notice that running simulations is not the same as actually building a bomb. When I was in Jr. High School, we did fallout maps to show the destructive power of a bomb. We were not building a bomb in our school.

I suspect that Iran would like to have the capability to build a bomb if they wanted to. Many nations have such a capability and have not built bombs. Furthermore, an Iranian bomb would not be a useful offensive weapon. Iranians can count. They know the US has about 10,000 nukes and Israel has about 300. They know they cannot use a bomb without being annihilated. So I really don't think Iran wants to actually build one. If they can be safe from attack without a bomb, they have nothing to gain by building one.

In the fortnight since Chuck Hagel's name was floated for secretary of defense, we have witnessed Washington at its worst.

Who is Chuck Hagel?

Born in North Platte, Neb., he was a squad leader in Vietnam, twice wounded, who came home to work in Ronald Reagan's 1980 campaign, was twice elected U.S. senator, and is chairman of the Atlantic Council and co-chair of the President's Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board.

To The Weekly Standard's Bill Kristol, however, Hagel is a man "out on the fringes," who has a decade-long record of "hostility to Israel" and is "pro-appeasement-of-Iran."