No appetite and no surprise…..
Politics Home has an opinion poll showing no public appetite for a military strike on Iran by United Kingdom. Similarly, there is no appetite for a strike by the UK or ‘any other country’ (ie, Israel) to ‘prevent Iran developing nuclear weapons’. Furthermore, it shows strong cross-party resistance to the idea that British troops should join a military mission launched by either the United States or Israel.
I would say this is hardly surprising given the widespread feeling that the British government deceived the public in making its case for the Iraq War and the increasing disillusionment with the Afghanistan adventure. Non-proliferation doesn’t work and the simple reason it doesn’t work is that it is correctly seen by countries like Iran as a way of maintaining the dominant hegemony of a select group of nations.
For example, Iran is a signatory to the non-proliferation treaty but Israel isn’t and faces no sanction and probably receives active encouragement. If I was a Palestinian or indeed a Lebanese or Syrian citizen and given the often bellicose nature of Likud and their ultra-orthodox allies I would tend to find this as disturbing if not more so than the reported forays of the Iranian regime. All this is not to say that Iran having these weapons would not be the same; more it is to point to the inherent double-standard of non-proliferation.
America’s nuclear arsenal currently consists of somewhere in the region of;
around 9,960 intact warheads, of which 5,735 are considered active or operational, and of these only a certain number are deployed at any given time.
So, it’s hardly in a position to lecture any one country on holding nuclear weapons. One wonders what Nick Clegg would make of military action against Iran. I would expect him to miss the point totally; that the time for the end of ‘non-proliferation’ is well and truly overdue and we should be in the age of disarmament. He has failed to articulate a clear vision with regard to Afghanistan so what would be different with regard to Iran?