Hunh. Did I say Saudi Arabia would be next? Obviously I was thinking on much too small a scale (Times Online, my emphasis):
THE SPECTRE of a nuclear race in the Middle East was raised yesterday when six Arab states announced that they were embarking on programmes to master atomic technology.
The move, which follows the failure by the West to curb Iran’s controversial nuclear programme, could see a rapid spread of nuclear reactors in one of the world’s most unstable regions, stretching from the Gulf to the Levant and into North Africa.
The countries involved were named by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) as Algeria, Egypt, Morocco and Saudi Arabia. Tunisia and the UAE have also shown interest.
No doubt these countries are all pursuing such technology because they are interested in clean energy. (sigh…)
Since Polimom’s pretty sure we’re all going to conclude that this is not, in fact, an attempt to diversify their energy economies, I’d rather take a look at the line I emphasized above: “the failure of the West”. That line is correct — we did fail, but the failure did not occur because of someone’s “appeasement policies“, or “Plamegate“. The article never mentions it, but one cannot ignore the elephant in the nuclear proliferation room.
We failed, folks, in Iraq.
Whether one thinks this is because we should never have gone into Iraq, or Rummy’s “less is more” strategy was stupid, or we had no post-invasion plan, or the administration is in a State of Denial, or that we hadn’t the heart for the war in the first place, the reason the U.S. cannot respond effectively to Iran is because we’ve hog-tied ourselves in Iraq.
Pick your own starting point, because they all go to this same hideous place.