The Jerusalem Post is reporting that George W. Bush and Dick Cheney plan on bombing Iran before the end of Bush’s term. “[A] senior official” claims that while Secretary of Defense Robert Gates and Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice have been hesitant to come on board, Hezbollah’s advances in Lebanon have demonstrated Iran’s increasing influence and thus hastened a potential American attack.
Without much else to go on, it’s helpful to look at George W. Bush’s language when speaking about the Iranian threat. There are some startling similarities between the words he used while addressing the Knesset last week and the anti-terrorism declarations he made before the Iraq War.
From last week’s Knesset address:
Permitting the world’s leading sponsor of terror to possess the world’s deadliest weapon would be an unforgivable betrayal of future generations. For the sake of peace, the world must not allow Iran to have a nuclear weapon.
From Bush’s 2002 State of the Union address:
We’ll be deliberate, yet time is not on our side. I will not wait on events, while dangers gather. I will not stand by, as peril draws closer and closer. The United States of America will not permit the world’s most dangerous regimes to threaten us with the world’s most destructive weapons.
Does the excerpt from last week’s address signal a Bush’s re-commitment to his 2002 pledge? Only time will tell. With continued military and political gains in Iraq, the U.S. is in a better position to weigh its options with regard to Iran. Which is why we may see an increased Iranian effort to derail progress in Mesopotamia. All the more reason to keep in mind that now, as in 2002, “time is not on our side.”