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former IAEA Director-General

Cherry Picking Intelligence For War in the Middle East? Here We Go Again
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Arms Control NOW

Authored by Greg Thielmann on June 28, 2017

This op-ed originally appeared in Defense One.

Will Trump follow the Bush playbook and start a war with Iran?

The ingredients are in place for the United States to repeat a scenario that has cost us dearly in the past: the misuse of intelligence to muster public support for an unwise war. Fifteen years ago, Bush administration officials led the nation to invade Iraq based on their own political agenda more than facts. This time the adversary would be Iran,  the target of unrelenting hostility from the Trump administration.

Donald Trump’s presidency has quickly become one of the most deeply troubled and unpopular ones in American history. Although Trump led voters to believe during the campaign that he did not want a new Middle East war, foreign wars have long been a favorite way of diverting attention from domestic troubles and reviving popular support. The administration has refused to build constructively on the Iran deal in addressing other regional problems. It’s an agreement Trump says he reviles even though it significantly restricts Iran’s nuclear program. Trump officials only grudgingly have admitted that Iran is complying with that accord. More recently, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson is speaking openly of regime change as a U.S. objective in Iran, and Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis long has spoken of Iran as if it were the root of all problems in the Middle East.

For the full article, visit Defense One.

Author: 
Greg Thielmann