Sunday, June 8, 2008


Imagine what would happen to the price of oil if the U.S. under George Bush launches an attack against Iran. People are complaining about the price of gasoline now being above $4.00 per gallon. They ain't seen nothing yet if Bush, Cheney or their counterpart in Israel, Ehud Olmert, sends bombs and missiles raining down upon Teheran.

Oil, now at $135 per bbl. would like go to $300, and stay there. Iran, one of the world's biggest oil producers, no doubt would disrupt its supply and cause huge dislocations in the oil market. So would all the other producers who would object to another U.S. started war against an Islamic country. Hugo Chavez of Venezuela certainly would react in sympathy with the Iranians. So would the whole world, almost, that considers George Bush and his regime an outlaw and a war monger.

And how about the world's stock markets. They would go into a steep dive, especially stocks in the U.S. and those of emerging markets.

In sum, the whole world economic order would cascade down to levels unimaginable.

An attack against Iran would make enemies of all the other Islamic countries, not withstanding that Iran is mostly Shiite whereas countries like Egypt, Jordan and Saudi Arabia are mostly Sunni. Nevertheless, the message received by the ordinary man in the street in any Islamic country would be clear - the U.S. and by association, the entire West, wages war against Islam and its beliefs. There would bitter enmity between Americans and Iranians for the next 500 years.

The ratcheting up of talk of war against Iran was not helped by Barack Obama's speech to AIPAC last week. Instead of toning down his rhetoric, Obama went out of his way to say that Iran was the gravest threat, and that he, as president, would not take anything off the table - code for bombing Iran - in assuring that Iran would never acquire nuclear weapons.

I supported Obama for his assertions that he would be willing to sit down and talk with Iranian leaders including president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. I did not vote for Obama to allow him to start another Middle East war, this time with Iran. I want negotiation and diplomacy and peace, not threats and bluster and military action.

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