• "God invented war so Americans could learn geography" -- Mark Twain.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

The Missing Elephant

It is no surprise the the New York Times should once again emit a clarion call for punitive isolation of Iran. What never ceases to amaze is the bald-faced hypocricy with which they do it.

In an editorial entitled “Fixing the Nuclear Non Proliferation Treaty”, the Times calls for strenthening the treaty by:

1. requiring that all treaty members accept tougher nuclear monitoring,

2. penalizing any state that violates its treaty commitments and then withdraws from the pact, as North Korea did.

3. refusing to allow any more “India-like exemptions from nuclear trade rules” and requiring that any state that tests a weapon would be denied nuclear trade.
Since, as the Times admits, North Korea has withdrawn from the treaty and since India and Pakistan are not signatories, who is left but Iran?

Of course, as the Times also admits, amending the treaty is something that “could take years of votes”. So, in the meantime, the Queen of 42 Street calls for the stop gap of “a strong political document” reflecting the above points.

In other words, the Times wants the United States and its allies to gang up and issue “robust commitments” for intrusion and isolation of Iran.

This, it might be noted, is the same strategy of indignation, intrusion and isolation that was the runner up to Shock and Awe.

Of course, when it comes to the Times, the astonishing thing is not the elephant in the room, but the elephant left out of the circus. The Times is mum on the issue of Israel which it avoids with a dismissive sneer.

"Egypt, which leads the Nonaligned Movement, is also playing games by pressing for a nuclear weapons-free zone in the Middle East that seeks to force Israel to give up its nuclear arsenal. That is not going to happen any time soon. All states need to ante up and reverse the treaty’s slide. The world’s security depends on it."

Most people, whose minds are not in hock to the Zionist enterprise, would fairly understand that a nuclear free Middle East or, for that matter, world, includes Israel.

While no one makes light of proliferation, most people understand that if the U.S. or India had the bomb it was natrual and forseeable that Russia or Pakistan would seek to get one too. The editorial mavens on 42nd Street understand this, so that what they are really indulging in is simply a species of partisan ethnic arrogance.

From the Times, that too, is unsurprising. Perhaps what warrants note is the depraved cynicism with which they foist their petard.

The Times knows that India, like Israel, is not a signatory to the NNPT. The primary rule of all international law is that: No sovereign is bound unless it wants to be bound. It is as simple and naked as that.

Accordingly the NNPT sought to provide a certain amount of “public pressure” to non-signatory states by providing for a sub-set of trade embargos on party pooping states: you don’t play; we don’t play. But rules were never anything to deter Bullyboy Bush and, in a much noticed snub to the non-proliferation ideal, the United States went ahead and sold a whole bunch of nukie goodies to India, notwithstanding its open and notorious nuclear activities.

Technically, the Times’ call for getting rid of India-like exemptions would encompass getting rid of Israel-like exemptions too, because any actual amendments to the treaty would have to be even-handed. However, interim political measures are another thing and, as the Times reminds us, “that is not going to happen.”

Perhaps not, but how much crystalline in its clarity was Pope Benedict's statement (not reported by the Times) to the World Day of Peace conference in January 2006.

"The truth of peace requires that all -­ whether those governments which openly or secretly possess nuclear arms, or those planning to acquire them ­- agree to change their course by clear and firm decisions, and strive for a progressive and concerted nuclear disarmament. The resources which would be saved could then be employed in projects of development capable of benefiting all their people, especially the poor. "