Suggested Answers to the Short Quiz

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Suggested Answers to the Short Quiz

Post by johnkarls »

Short Quiz - Suggested Answers
Real Politik (aka National Interest) and America’s Looming Attack On Iran

Question 1

What is “Real Politik”?

Answer 1

Acting only when one of your own vital “national interests” is involved -- aka, “picking your fights.”

Question 2

Why is “Real Politik” (aka “National Interest”) the polar opposite of the derogatory term “Policeman of the World”?

Answer 2

“Policeman of the World” is used as a label for anyone who believes that we can squander our national resources on EVERY “good cause” that comes along. And, indeed, President Obama’s speech on why he had attacked Libya (claiming that intervention was desirable to prevent the rebel tribes from being slaughtered while admitting that his nearly-universal critics were correct that no "national interest' was involved) was careful to underline that his decision was based on pure whim and, accordingly, potential rebellions in other countries should not be based on the assumption that President Obama would be obligated to bail them out also.

Question 3

Does 27.7% of the world’s oil production come from the Middle East? Does another 20.2% originate in countries “down wind” from the Middle East?

Answer 3

Yes. Yes.

Question 4

Is oil fungible? In other words, if 47.9% of the world’s oil supply becomes radioactive, can the U.S. take comfort in the fact that much of its oil imports comes from Canada and Venezuela, or will the U.S. be forced to wake up to the fact that Canadian and Venezuelan oil will go to the Japans of the world if the U.S. cannot afford to pay the new world price?

Answer 4

Of course it is fungible.

Of course no such comfort can be taken and, of course, the U.S. would be forced to wake up.

Question 5

Did Iran, North Korea and Libya purchase nuclear-bomb technology from Pakistan’s notorious nuclear scientist, A.Q. Kahn, the “father of the Pakistani atomic bomb”?

Answer 5


Question 6

Following the 2003 U.S. invasion of Iraq which had been claiming that it had deployed operational nuclear weapons (a claim of success for its 25-year-old nuclear program that was believed, inter alia, by France, Germany, the U.N., etc.), did North Korea race to develop and test its nuclear weapons?

Answer 6


Question 7

Following the 2003 U.S. invasion of Iraq, did Libya’s Colonel Qaddafi “get cold feet” and surprise the U.S. and its allies on two counts = (A) that he had been developing nuclear weapons as a result of technology purchased from A.Q. Kahn, and (B) that he now wanted to abandon his nuclear-weapons program in order to avoid the wrath of the U.S. and its allies?

Answer 7

Yes. Yes.

Question 8

Following the 2003 U.S. invasion of Iraq, has Iran “steered a middle course” according to the U.N. and its International Atomic Energy Agency (“IAEA”) by racing to develop nuclear weapons while claiming that its nuclear program is only intended for the peaceful purpose of producing electrical power?

Answer 8


Question 9

Are our foreign-policy cognoscenti now waking up to the fact that last year’s U.S./British/French attack on Libya and our “free pass” for nuclear North Korea have convinced Iran that the only way to avoid a military attack is, like North Korea, to develop atomic weapons?

Answer 9


Question 10

Will the “Gulf State Six” (Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Bahrain and Oman) each go nuclear as soon as Iran develops nuclear weapons because the Gulf State Six have no more faith in the American “nuclear umbrella” than Charles de Gaulle when he pulled France out of NATO and proceeded to develop French nuclear weapons?

Answer 10

Of course.

Question 11

Is 47.9% of the world’s oil supply likely to become radioactive in the near future if Iran and each of its Arab neighbors are “armed to the teeth” with nuclear weapons?

Answer 11

What do you think???

Question 12

Have each of the Republican Presidential candidates (except for Ron Paul who has no chance for the nomination because of his foreign-policy positions), claimed that they would prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons by military force if necessary, while President Obama will not do so?

Answer 12


Question 13

Do these claims provide “running room” for President Obama to attack Iran? To negotiate from a position of strength?

Answer 13

Yes. Yes.

Question 14

Is a military attack likely to be successful in terms of eliminating or delaying Iran’s nuclear-weapons program -- without regime change?

Answer 14

Probably not in terms of elimination.

Probably not in terms of a significant delay.

Question 15

When President Clinton signed on 10/31/1998 the Iraq Liberation Act making regime change in Iraq official U.S. policy, how difficult did President Clinton think that regime change in Iraq would be?

Answer 15

Who knows???

President Clinton’s proposed budgets for the remainder of his second term never provided much funding for “regime change” in Iraq -- though one is left to wonder whether President Clinton thought “regime change” could be accomplished in Iraq “on the cheap” through covert operations, or whether he just wasn’t serious about “regime change” despite signing the law.

Question 16

Did our author, Leslie Gelb, argue in the Daily Beast on 1/17/2012 that the Senate Foreign Relations Committee should debate invading Iran before a decision is taken by President Obama?

Answer 16


Question 17

Is it ironic that Leslie Gelb’s 1/17/2012 article does NOT acknowledge that his recommendation is unconstitutional? In other words, that the U.S. Constitution requires a “Declaration of War” by both the House of Representatives and the Senate, rather than a mere debate by a mere committee of only one of the houses of Congress?

Answer 17

Of course.

But why should Leslie Gelb think of this Constitutional requirement??? Nobody else has since 1941, the last time America bothered to follow the Constitution vis-à-vis Declarations of War!!!

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Q&A 6-8 and Iraq's Nuclear-Weapons Program

Post by Pat »

---------------------------- Original Message ----------------------------
Subject: Q&A 6-8 and Iraq’s Nuclear-Weapons Program
From: Pat
Date: Wed, January 25, 2012 7:20 pm
To: John Karls

Hi John,

Q&A 6-8 refer to the 2003 invasion of Iraq.

Q&A-6 states: (1) as of 2003, Iraq had had a nuclear-weapons program for 25 years, (2) Iraq had been claiming that it had deployed operational nuclear weapons; and (3) Germany, France, the U.N., etc., believed that Iraq had developed nuclear weapons.

Could you please elaborate on these three points.


---------------------------- Original Message ----------------------------
Subject: Re: Q&A 6-8 and Iraq’s Nuclear-Weapons Program
From: John Karls
Date: Wed, January 25, 2012 11:48 pm
To: Pat

Dear Pat,

Regarding Iraq’s 25-year nuclear weapons program, one of the earliest indications of that program came with the construction by France of a nuclear reactor at Osirak, Iraq, which was (1) bombed by Iran in September 1980 immediately after Saddam launched his 8-year war against Iran, and (2) bombed and destroyed by Israel in June 1981.

Following Gulf War I, the United Nation’s International Atomic Energy Agency oversaw the destruction of at least some Iraqi nuclear-weapons facilities, such as the one at Al Atheer which the IAEA destroyed in 1992.

However, Iraq still had its nuclear scientists and its nuclear “know how.” In addition, it may still have had nuclear-weapons facilities that it failed to disclose in accordance with U.N. Security Council Resolution 687 (1991) following Gulf War I.

[U.N. Security Council Resolution 1441 of 8 November 2002 states that Iraq had refused to make such a disclosure under Resolution 687 and provided it one last chance to do so.]

From 1992 to 1998, Iraq “repeatedly obstructed immediate, unconditional, and unrestricted access to sites designated by the United Nations Special Commission (UNSCOM) and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), failed to cooperate fully and unconditionally with UNSCOM and IAEA weapons inspectors, as required by resolution 687 (1991), and ultimately ceased all cooperation with UNSCOM and the IAEA in 1998.” (quoting from the seventh paragraph of U.N. Security Council Resolution 1441)

In December 1998, Iraq expelled the U.N./I.A.E.A. inspectors and refused any further cooperation.

[NB: this was less than two months after President Clinton signed on 10/31/1998 the Iraq Liberation Act making regime change in Iraq official U.S. policy, as noted in Q&A-15.]

From December 1998 until 8 November 2002 when the U.N. Security Council adopted Resolution 1441, Saddam frequently claimed that he had deployed operational nuclear weapons.

[Indeed, many Iraqi soldiers captured in 2003 during Gulf War II said that they had been told by their officers (and that they believed) that although their own unit didn’t have nuclear weapons, the units to the left and right of their unit did.]

Accordingly, it is no wonder that the U.N. and its International Atomic Energy Agency, as well as all of the members of the U.N. Security Council [which include as permanent veto-wielding members all of the World War II victors = France, the U.K., the Soviet Union/Russian Federation and China in addition to the U.S.] believed Saddam’s claims even though they knew that he had never tested the nuclear weapons he claimed to have deployed. [Germany also stated its belief of Saddam’s claims even though it did not commence the fourth of its five terms on the U.N. Security Council until 2003.]

Under the circumstances, it is no mystery why the U.N. Security Council adopted Resolution 1441 and framed the issue the way they did = submit a declaration of all of your nuclear facilities and let the IAEA inspectors back in for the first time since 1998 to begin verifications, OR ELSE.

[There was considerable disagreement whether the “or else” authorized military force and whether the “or else” trigger had been satisfied -- (1) technically, the “or else” provision comprised a statement (quoting from the penultimate paragraph of Resolution 1441) = The U.N. Security Council “recalls that the Council has repeatedly warned Iraq that it will face serious consequences as a result of its continued violations of its obligations” (2) the “declaration of nuclear facilities” by Iraq in response to Resolution 1441 was viewed by Western governments as so woefully inadequate as to comprise a bad joke, (3) after ascertaining in February 2003 that a new Security Council Resolution spelling out that “serious consequences” included military force would receive the required 60% majority vote but be vetoed by Russia, its Security Council sponsors (Australia, Denmark, Italy, Japan, Poland, Spain, the U.K. and the U.S. -- which already comprised a simple majority of the 15-member Security Council) withdrew the Resolution and the “coalition of the willing” comprising four-dozen countries (in combat and/or support roles) proceeded with military hostilities in March 2003. Turkey, incidentally, severely and perhaps permanently strained its relations with the U.S. by attempting to extort an exorbitant price for permitting troops and supplies to transit Turkey into the Kurdish area of northern Iraq, as a result of which there was only a much-larger one-pronged invasion from the south.]

In retrospect, the failure to find any Iraqi nuclear weapons after Gulf War II has forced two conclusions = (1) Western intelligence (including the CIA and Britain’s MI-6) were woefully inadequate, and (2) Saddam was making false claims of having deployed nuclear weapons to keep Iran and other neighbors off balance.

Incidentally, I was NOT referring to Saddam’s nuclear ambitions in Q&A 6-8 in order to re-hash any of the reasons for Gulf War II.

INSTEAD, I WAS TRYING to show how Gulf War II influenced in three different ways the three countries (Iran, North Korea and Libya) which had purchased nuclear-weapons technology from A.Q. Kahn, described in Q&A-5 as the “father of the Pakistani atomic bomb.”

Your friend,

John K.

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