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April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review August 17, 2005 / 12 Av, 5765

Bush threats overtaxing foreign policy

By Robert Robb

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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | The Bush administration may not be a lame duck presidency when it comes to domestic policy. But events in Iran suggest that it may have become such regarding international affairs.

In an Israeli television interview last week, President Bush said that all options, including the use of military force, were on the table to prevent Iran from developing a nuclear power fuel cycle that might be diverted to produce material for a nuclear weapon.

This was not a new position. But the timing, occurring as Iranian negotiations with the Europeans were breaking down and Iran was restarting its uranium enrichment process, was notable.

Moreover, Bush seemed to go out of his way to provide credibility to the threat, pointing out that he had "used force in the recent past to secure our country," an obvious reference to Afghanistan and Iraq.

Yet, remarkably, this reinvigorated threat to use military force by a U.S. president is unlikely to have any material effect on Iran's nuclear development.

The purpose of the threat presumably was to get the diplomatic track moving in the direction the Bush administration desires. It apparently wants the International Atomic Energy Agency to refer Iran to the U.N. Security Council, and for the Security Council to adopt sanctions if Iran refuses to give up the development of a nuclear fuel cycle.

But this is an unlikely and probably futile approach.

In the first place, what would the IAEA refer?

Iran has been in violation of its obligations under the nuclear non-proliferation treaty, conducting development activities since the 1980s without reporting them to IAEA.

But it is now reporting and operating under the treaty's framework. There remain some outstanding issues, but mostly about past activities, not current ones.

Mohamed ElBaradei, IAEA's director general, says that while all declared material in Iran is under verification, he cannot yet affirm that there are no undeclared materials or activities there. But he is not portraying Iran as currently uncooperative or hiding things.

The Bush administration wants Iran denied the ability to have a nuclear fuel cycle irrespective of the degree of IAEA oversight. Its fear that Iran will divert such material for the production of nuclear weapons is appropriate and warranted. But under the non-proliferation treaty, Iran has a right to develop a complete fuel cycle for the production of nuclear energy.

It's a little late in the game to be referring Iran to the Security Council for its past reporting failures. And an attempt to refer Iran for currently doing what it has a right to do under the non-proliferation treaty would certainly seem a nonstarter.

Even if the matter got to the Security Council, the chances that Russia and China, both of which have significant and growing economic relations with Iran, would go along with anything meaningful are remote.

So, what sort of military action might the Bush administration credibly threaten to induce Iran to give up development of a nuclear power fuel cycle? In his Israeli television interview, Bush seemed to leave open even the possibility of regime change in Iran, saying that he has been willing to take military action "to secure the country and to provide the opportunity for people to live in free societies."

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But, after Iraq, the Bush administration would not have a chance of securing sufficient domestic support for such a war without a much more direct and imminent threat. Even targeted military action aimed at Iran's nuclear facilities, if technically feasible, would set this country's domestic politics on fire.

I'm not one for neocon conspiracy theories to explain the Bush administration's foreign policy. But there is a point of view, which became ascendant in the Bush administration after 9/11, that holds that the United States should use its influence and dominant military power to shape the world.

In some respects, this is a benign hubris. The Bush administration has been pushing for the spread of democracy and free markets, which would be good for this country and for people everywhere, particularly those living in oppression or poverty.

But the dissipation of American military power in Iraq and our increasing irrelevance regarding Iran's nuclear developments offer sobering lessons about the practical limits of U.S. influence in a fast-developing world.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

JWR contributor Robert Robb is a columnist for The Arizona Republic. Comment by clicking here.

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