The Iranian regime is attacking on all fronts, thrilled at the downfall of the hated Mubarak, and buoyed by the paralysis of the West. The failure to support democratic revolutions in the Middle East has convinced the mullahs in Tehran that they have no effective opposition, and they are trying to run up the score as fast as they can, on both regional and domestic playing fields.
We can also expect more acts of sabotage, especially against the spinal cord of oil and gas refineries, plants, and pipelines. Here is a video of a recent explosion in the holy city of Qom, for example. The Iranian people know that their rulers are sending vast sums of money to foreign terrorist organizations and to radical Islamists abroad, adding to the popular resentment of Iranian misery, and acts against the oil industry are a popular way to express their rage.
The regime can cope so long as oil prices continue to rise. The current budget assumed $85/barrel, and the current number is over $105. Bonanza time! And so, earlier this week, Khamenei organized a celebratory planning session for the near future, bringing Hezbollah leaders, the Syrian prime minister, and top Muslim Brotherhood factotums–including at least one Egyptian Brother–to Tehran. The supreme leader laid out the strategy: all-out efforts in Bahrain, aimed at the expulsion of American military forces; all-in in Somalia (where, unnoticed, fifty foreign aid workers–50!–have been killed in the past couple of weeks; and in Egypt, a mixture of bloodletting and cunning. The Brothers should stay away from formal, governmental power in the short term, but exert their influence on the new constitution to turn Egypt into an Islamic republic, ensuring, above all, the degradation of women. The Brothers and the others should foment religious war between Christians and Muslims, a prelude to the use of force to guarantee “security.”
Finally, careful coordination regarding the “final push” against Israel, the great triumph for which Khamenei and Ahmadinejad expect to be long remembered.
Ambitious? You bet. And why not? Obama and his favored advisers are bound and determined to keep their distance from the Islamic Republic, obviously still hoping that they will get some kind of deal from the ayatollahs, no matter how many times the regime spits in our faces. When the secret history of these years is written, I predict even the most cynical of us will be astonished at how many meetings were held, how many back channels were used, and how steadfastly we refused to take “go to hell” for an answer from these mass murderers.
We could support democratic revolution in Iran and change the world. Instead, we are appeasing the Iranian tyrants and tolerating, without any effective response, their all-out war against the best Americans, the ones who wear our military uniforms and are targeted by Iranian killers, Iranian weapons and Iranian proxies.
What a terrible legacy.