Iranian officials went on the offensive, Monday, accusing the International Atomic Energy Agency of being infiltrated by "terrorists and saboteurs" who are "making decisions covertly," and calling the United States-led sanctions on their country "the ugly face of colonization and modern slavery."
This comes on the heals of another month of heated exchanges between the West, which accuses Iran of attempting to develop nuclear weapons, and the Middle East country, which insists its nuclear endeavors are much more mundane.
Canada severed diplomatic ties with Iran this month, closing its embassy in Tehran, a move Iranian officials deemed "hasty and unwise." In response, Canada labeled Iran as "the most significant threat to world peace," according to an Associated Press report.
Meanwhile, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has continued to push for a "red line" to be drawn in regards to Iran’s nuclear efforts. Last week he stated his country could no longer rely on the U.S. to enforce anti-nuclear policy against Iran, and took to the airwaves on Sunday to make his case to American voters.
While Netanyahu has never come out in support of either candidate in the upcoming election, it was clear from Sunday’s rhetoric that he is becoming fed up with the Obama administration’s failure to ... well, apparently to do more.
In response, Susan Rice, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations,
Of course, GOP candidate Mitt Romney jumped at the opportunity to say he’d take a much tougher stance than his Democrat counterpart.
So what have we at the moment?
Well, there’s the increasingly hostile stance being taken by both Israel and Iran, both sides it seems ready to strike at a moment’s notice. Then there’s Iran’s steadfast refusal to open its facilities to U.N. inspectors and put the world’s mind at ease. On the homefront, there’s troops still stationed in the Middle East dying at an alarming rate. Political leaders prefer to make this a campaign issue than to discuss it honestly. And let’s not forget that not only the U.S., but much of the rest of the world, is still fighting its way out of a recession.
Can anyone really afford another war right now?
In 2003, Donald Rumsfeld estimated the cost of war with Iraq would come in at about $60 billion. In just five years, that figure stood at 10 times the amount.
Indeed, according to Israeli media outlet Globes, "leading economists say an attack by Israel will cause a sharp jump in oil prices, and a severe worldwide recession." Just look at the effect the recent protests over an anti-Islam movie posted on YouTube has had at our local gas stations.
It’s clear this is a true representation of being between a rock and a hard place. Can the world afford to act on Iran’s more-than-likely nefarious nuclear intentions? Perhaps the better question is: Can it afford not to?
We don’t pretend to have the answers. Instead, we’re reminded of a lesson learned time and again throughout history, when it seemed the world (or much of it) engaged in war: Though something is happening half a world away, the effects here at home can still be felt ... these days, probably worse than ever before.