Last week, in an interview with the BBC, Condoleeza Rice was still adamant, insisting on geographical facts, making it clear that “Iran is not Iraq.” On the other hand, reality based arguments have too often been denied their factual power by the Bush administration to simply believe her in this case. Seymour Hersh, for one, doesn’t believe that the ‘n’ makes the difference. He writes in the New Yorker –
A government consultant with close ties to the civilian leadership in the Pentagon said that Bush was ‘absolutely convinced that Iran is going to get the bomb’ if it is not stopped. He said that the President believes that he must do ‘what no Democrat or Republican, if elected in the future, would have the courage to do,’ and ‘that saving Iran is going to be his legacy.’
One former defense official, who still deals with sensitive issues for the Bush Administration, told me that the military planning was premised on a belief that ‘a sustained bombing campaign in Iran will humiliate the religious leadership and lead the public to rise up and overthrow the government.’ He added, ‘I was shocked when I heard it, and asked myself, ‘What are they smoking?”
Good question, what are they smoking?