Hitler 1938=Ahmadinejad 2007?
What makes WWII different from WWIII is that ideologies are much harder to pinpoint the target. Let us take a look at history to see if we can learn anything.
By 1938, Germany under Adolf Hitler had for some years been rearming in defiance of its obligations under the Versailles treaty and other international agreements. Yet even though Hitler in :"Mein Kampf" had explicitly spelled out the goals he was now preparing to pursue, scarcely anyone took him seriously. To the imminent victims of the war he was soon to start, Hitler's book and his inflammatory speeches were nothing more than braggadocio or, to use the more colorful word Hannah Arendt once applied to Adolf Eichmann, rodomontade: the kind of red meat any politician might throw to his constituents at home. Hitler might sound at times like a madman, but in reality he was a shrewd operator with whom one could--in the notorious term coined by the London Times--"do business." The business that was done under this assumption was the Munich Agreement of 1938, which the British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain declared had brought "peace in our time."Ah, peace in our time. How sweet that would be! Only peace does not come free, especially when your enemy is determined to destroy you in order to achieve their goal. Is Ahmadinejad determined to rid the of Israel, Jewish people, and Americans?
At the outset I stipulated that the weapons with which we are fighting World War IV are not all military--that they also include economic, diplomatic, and other nonmilitary instruments of power. In exerting pressure for reform on countries like Egypt and Saudi Arabia, these nonmilitary instruments are the right ones to use. But it should be clear by now to any observer not in denial that Iran is not such a country. As we know from Iran's defiance of the Security Council and the IAEA even while the United States has been warning Ahmadinejad that "all options" remain on the table, ultimatums and threats of force can no more stop him than negotiations and sanctions have managed to do. Like them, all they accomplish is to buy him more time.I believe he is. So why is he the guy that does not get any bad press, and we get all the condemnation? Because it is easy to attack the one you know who will not attack you back. Maybe we should take the gloves off?
In short, the plain and brutal truth is that if Iran is to be prevented from developing a nuclear arsenal, there is no alternative to the actual use of military force--any more than there was an alternative to force if Hitler was to be stopped in 1938.
Much of the world has greeted Ahmadinejad's promise to wipe Israel off the map with something close to insouciance. In fact, it could almost be said of the Europeans that they have been more upset by Ahmadinejad's denial that a Holocaust took place 60 years ago than by his determination to set off one of his own as soon as he acquires the means to do so. In some of European countries, Holocaust denial is a crime, and the European Union only recently endorsed that position. Yet for all their retrospective remorse over the wholesale slaughter of Jews back then, the Europeans seem no readier to lift a finger to prevent a second Holocaust than they were the first time around.All in all, I do not want Iran to become a nuclear weapon broker. I love the Persian people, but it doesn't appear as if they are going to overthrow that regime. And what if they do? Will they continue to destroy the Jewish people as is happening in Lebanon? I do not know. Do you want we should wait and find out? Then shut up about Darfur.
Not so George W. Bush, a man who knows evil when he sees it and who has demonstrated an unfailingly courageous willingness to endure vilification and contumely in setting his face against it. It now remains to be seen whether this president, battered more mercilessly and with less justification than any other in living memory, and weakened politically by the enemies of his policy in the Middle East in general and Iraq in particular, will find it possible to take the only action that can stop Iran from following through on its evil intentions both toward us and toward Israel. As an American and as a Jew, I pray with all my heart that he will.
As I am not afraid to stand up for what is right, I can still stand up for Darfur without being a hypocrite. I say we get rid of that Islamofascist dictator as well...
To read the complete article by Mr. Podhoretz, click here. (Free registration required.) It is rather lengthy, but it is worth the time.