Twelve hours. One circuit of the sun from horizon to horizon, one course of the moon from dusk to dawn. What was once a natural measurement for the daily round of human life is now a doom-laden interval between the voicing of an autocrat's brutal whim and the infliction of mass annihilation halfway around the world.
Twelve hours is the maximum time necessary for American bombers to gear up and launch an unprovoked sneak attack – a Pearl Harbor in reverse – against Iran, the Washington Post reports. The plan for this "global strike," which includes a very viable "nuclear option," was approved months ago, and is now in operation. The planes are already on continuous alert, making "nuclear delivery" practice runs along the Iranian border, as Sy Hersh reports in the New Yorker, and waiting only for the signal from President George W. Bush to drop their payloads of conventional and nuclear weapons on some 400 targets spread throughout the condemned land.
And when this attack comes – either as a stand-alone "knock-out blow" or else as the precusor to a full-scale, regime-changing invasion, like the earlier aggression in Iraq – there will be no warning, no declaration of war, no hearings, no public debate. The already issued orders governing the operation put the decision solely in the hands of the president: he picks up the phone, he says, "Go" – and in twelve hours' time, up to a million Iranians will be dead.
Now there's another article on the same subject that I also want to recommend. It's entitled "America's last days" by Margaret Kimberley and I'll give you an excerpt here:
Does George W. Bush have the numbers 6, 6, and 6 tattooed on his head? In recent years it has become popular for every calamity, natural or man made, to be ascribed to the end times, the last days, Armageddon. If the end is near, the nation most responsible is the United States of America.
Throughout history human beings have competed with Mother Nature in the killing business, and humans win hands down. The Middle Passage, the American Indian holocaust, Stalin's purges and Hitler's concentration camps took out many more millions than bad weather, or shifting tectonic plates. If no one speaks up to stop Bush and does so very soon, that awful trend will continue.
The Bush administration has been openly threatening a military attack against Iran. Seymour Hersh recently wrote in the New Yorker that not only is the Bush administration preparing to attack Iran, but is planning to use nuclear weapons to do it. In this latest report, Hersh quotes sources who repeat the Bush messianic vision to "save" the people of Iran. If the Iranians will be liberated like the Iraqis were liberated, they are on their way to a living hell.
Hersh is not the first to report that the president is a megalomaniac hell bent on killing people in order to save them. Bush reportedly told Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas that he is getting his orders straight from God.
"God told me to strike at al Qaida and I struck them, and then he instructed me to strike at Saddam, which I did, and now I am determined to solve the problem in the Middle East."
It isn't clear if God also recommended permanent bases, theft of resources, no bid contracts and Abu Ghraib.
There are obvious reasons to fear Hersh's assertions about Bush. Equally frightening is the prospect that he will get whatever he wants from a spineless, bought-off Congress. One Congressional source tells Hersh, "There's no pressure from Congress. The only political pressure is from the guys who want to do it."
I think Kimberly is right. These may be the last days. Not because of some wrathful God but because of a wrathful (and demented) human being who thinks he's God.