By Michael Barone, Thomas Jefferson Street blog
At the risk of being accused of browning up the boss, let me link to Mort Zuckerman's column from the U.S. News Weekly on Iran. What can we do about Iran's nuclear weapons program, short of military action? Mort has a list:
We must press harder to coordinate four measures:
1. An arms embargo.
2. A ban on exports to Iran of gas and other refined products to cripple transport.
3. A global boycott of the entire banking system of Iran, instead of helping it as European banks are.
4. A prohibition on Western countries supplying spare parts to the oil industry.
And here are some wise words from Michael Ledeen on Pajamas Media. He provides a nice riposte to Barack Obama's recent videotape to the Iranian people on the Nowruz holiday (which, by the way, is a Zoroastrian holiday disdained by the mullahs):
Then he provided his vision of the Iranian peoples' belief in hope and change. "You will be celebrating your New Year in much the same way that we Americans mark our holidays," he earnestly intoned, "by gathering with friends and family, exchanging gifts and stories, and looking to the future with a renewed sense of hope."
NOT. Most Iranians look to the future with a deepening mood of despair. The mullahs have long since wrecked the economy, and things are getting worse now, what with the price of oil at one-third its recent highs. The single word that best describes the state of the Iranian people--to whom Obama explicitly directed these words--is "degradation." The drop in Iranian birth rates during the reign of the mullahs is the most dramatic in the history of fertility statistics, and is now below replacement. The level of opiate addiction is five times that of China at the time of the Opium Wars. Any Iranian hearing the American president talk of renewed hope, would wonder if he was thinking of the Iranians in Beverly Hills, who rule the place.
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By Michael Barone