As a graduate of Columbia University (School of Journalism: School of International Affairs: Middle East Institute) and a recpient of many emails re Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's "visit" to the campus. I'm still trying to figure out what was that all about: Why did the university invite him (to insult him publicly?) and why did he accept the invitation (to get insulted publicly?). Here is my short take: I'm interested more in learning about Iran's policies as opposed to statements made by its leaders (check-out Anwar Sadat's views on Jews and Israel before 1977 or for that matter Mao's views on America). Abd btw, between 30,000 to 40,000 Jews live in Iran. How many Jews live in Egypt, Jordan and Saudi Arabia? and this is interesting: Iran Holocaust Show Sympathetic to Jews. Bottom Line: an Israeli and/or American strike against Iran will ensure that Iran -- its government and its people will turn against Israel.
And on a related topic. Someone asked me what I thought about Steven Clemons' prediction that Bush won't attack Iran. I hope that he is right. At this stage there are two main reasons why Bush won't do it: 1. His military people are opposed. 2. His Shiite "allies" in Baghdad are opposed. It's difficult to go to war against Iran if these two players are not in your court. There is also the international opposition -- and I doubt very much that the French are on board -- and the potential effect on oil prices ($100 a barrel?) at a time of economic anxieties. But I still think that Bush/Cheney would like to have a confrontation of some sort with the Iranians (and Syria) -- what exactly I'm not sure -- and that they are working on something with the Israelis.


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