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8 JAN 2020







Australia should strongly oppose any war with Iran and should use its utmost diplomatic efforts to bring about peace. It should be doing its utmost to persuade our 'great and powerful ally' to do likewise.


It should make it abundantly clear that our military have pressing domestic priorities that absolutely preclude our involvement in ill-advised, foolish, and morally dubious overseas adventures. Our military right now and for the foreseeable future is most usefully occupied doing firefighting, a task to which it brings unique assets and which needs to be its absolute topmost priority.


In any case, a war with Iran would be quite simply, wrong. Iran is not and does not need to be, an enemy of Australia.


For that matter Iran does not need to be and should not be an enemy of the United States. 

It is only an enemy because the Trump administration has spared no effort to make it an enemy, from the moment that Trump became President.


It would have been in the US's own security interest to ally with Iran, against ISIS, the real common enemy. Iran would have been willing, with whatever reservations it might have had, to go along with that.


Instead a path of unnecessary and counterproductive confrontation has been chosen. This is not a path that is even in the interests of the US, let alone Australia.


It is customary to argue that Iran 'supports terrorism', in the middle east, but when this is examined in detail its hard to see what that really means. The closer you look the more it seems that the supporters of terrorism are in Riyadh rather than in Tehran. The Houthis and Hezbollah may not be exactly angels, but they are simply not in the same league as ISIS, Al-qaeda or the Caliphate. Indeed, it might be possible to reach a modus vivendi with every one of these groups, or at least a reduction in tensions that would never be possible with the Sunni groups. We may not like them – we do not have to. But they do not remotely represent the threat or the evil that the fundamentalist groups pose.


The assassination of a very senior military officer of ANY country – apart from being grossly unlawful – is hardly calculated to do anything but inflame the situation in the middle east.


What do Donald Trump and Pompeo EXPECT Iran to do? How do they expect them to react? How in the same situation would the US itself react?


If Iran had assassinated the chair of the US joint chiefs of staff, or the secretary-general of NATO, on the grounds that he was 'planning war against Iran', what would the US do?


That this question can even be asked suggests something shockingly wrong in the calculations of US policymakers. The question itself beggars belief.


The suggestions that Solimaniyeh might have been somehow involved in 911 are simply nonsense – Iran comes from a branch of Islam that is regarded by the perpetrators thereof as 'apostates' and 'heretics', to be sent to hell as fast and as painfully as possible. Iran in turn regards them in the same way. They are mortal enemies.


Finally it turns out that quite contrary to Pompeo's claims that Solimaniyeh came to Baghdad to plan attacks on the USA, he came instead – according to a statement by Iraq's Prime Minister – to broker a peace deal between Iraq, Iran, and Saudi Arabia. A deal that presumably has been torpedoed.


War with Iran will be a quagmire that serves no-one's interest. Involvement in such a conflict would be counter to Australia's core security interests (ie it would make us less secure not more secure), not to mention plain wrong.


Targeting Irans priceless cultural heritage is unambiguously a war crime. When ISIS blew up the Bamiyan buddhas the world was rightly outraged. When they blew up Palmyra the world was again rightly outraged. The loss was/is irreplaceable. The threat made by Trump puts him in the same category as them. Can this even be true? Would a US President really do that? We would like to think not, but it seems it could be true. To what depth of barbarism have we fallen?


The reasons for the assassination just do not add up. War with Iran has been rightly seen for years as simply bonkers. Indeed this is so. Involvement in it serves neither the US itself nor Australia.


Our armed forces have a topmost priority task right here in fighting the fires. That should be their task and involvement in an Iran conflict should not be considered. Australia must exert every diplomatic effort to ensure an Iran conflict never takes place.


John Hallam

People for Nuclear Disarmament

Human Survival Project

UN Nuclear Disarmament Campaigner

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Last Updated on Tuesday, 07 January 2020 19:31