I don’t want to write this. Every word makes me feel worse, but yet I feel compelled to write all the same. Certain things have come together in my mind and they’re not good.
I have just re-read the latest Washington Times excerpt from Kenneth Timmerman’s Countdown to Crisis: The Coming Nuclear Showdown with Iran. This particular excerpt gives damning detail of Iran’s ties to al Qaeda, in particular the hijackers who killed nearly 3,000 on 9/11/01, as did the previous excerpt yesterday. For obvious reasons, Timmerman – who talked to a slew of Iranian defectors – also rips the Central Intelligence Agency for its refusal to accept that Iran was continuing to support terror despite the election of Mohammed Khatami as Iranian president in 1997. Timmerman calls the CIA denial of the truth “The Concept.”
However, as much as I would like to rip then-Director George Tenet, this is not a post about CIA failures. This is about Iran, and its lead military benefactor and ally: Communist China.
As most of you know, Iran held another “election” this month. Those in the know will tell you – and they will be right – that the actual office means little: Ayatollah Ali Khameini still runs the show. However, with the ascension of Tehran Mayor Mahmud Ahmadinejad to the Iranian Presidency, I believe Khameini et al have tipped their hand.
Until last Friday, everyone assumed the next president would be Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, the former president. Rafsanjani was a wily politician, that is to say he played a fairly decent PR game with the Western press while he committed unspeakable and vile acts against his own people. A re-elected Rafsanjani would have continued the game, and played it well, but it was not to be.
By pushing Ahmadinejad (to the point of stuffing ballot boxes, according to Michael Ledeen of National Review Online), the Iranian mullahs are, in my opinion, coming to the conclusion that they don’t need to play that game. It is almost certain that Iran’s support for the “insurgency” in Iraq will continue; Ahmadinejad himself has insisted the nuclear program is also full speed ahead once he takes office in August.
Why would they feel that way? Well, for starters, there is the fact that its ties to both al Qaeda and the anti-American terrorists in Iraq (yes, I know in some places they are the same thing) have led to no serious repercussions. There is the fact that they are very, very close to becoming a nuclear power, which would be a dead-certain deterrent against any military action by the United States. Finally, and I believe most importantly, there is Communist China.
Iran would be nowhere near where they are now on the nuclear front without Communist China. Several firms owned by the Communists, including the military-owned Northern Industrial Corporation (Norinco) have sold arms to the mullahs, and what the Communist China itself hasn’t done to buildup the mullahcracy’s might, its satellite state of Stalinist North Korea has done for it. The idea that Communist China could have done so much for and in Iran without knowing of the mullah’s appetite for terrorists – from Hezbollah to al Qaeda – is laughable.
From 9/11/01 on, I have always held the Communist China’s role in the terrorists’ war against America was as a benefactor of terrorism: al Qaeda, Iran, Saddam Hussein, the Taliban (second and third items), etc. I have never claimed that Communist China had foreknowledge of 9/11/01. Timmerman himself, or at least his excerpts, don’t make clear that even Iran knew exactly what would happen – although it’s fairly obvious the mullahs knew something big was going down. For Communist China, it was simple: the terrorists hated America, and the Communists can always use anti-Americans.
Now, however, we are entering more dangerous times. We have already seen fresh reports that Communist China is looking to conquer Taiwan sometime in the next two years. The mass reaction to the Nine Commentaries on the Chinese Communist Party (2.5 million resignations and counting as of 5:00 this evening) gives the cadres ample reason for such a major nationalist diversion. However, it would almost certainly lead to American military response – unless, that is, we were dealing with another major terrorist attack. Meanwhile, an Iranian regime that continues to be despised by its own people has made it clear it will rely more on might and violence than on a “soft sell” to the West, making it all the more dependent on its Communist Chinese benefactors.
At this point, I’m going to throw it open to all of you. Am I putting the wrong two and two together? Have I become the overheated alarmist I have spent the better part of five years trying to avoid? Is my unspoken but frightening conclusion that I feel is based on evidence merely a theory which happens to fit the facts?
Or (gulp) am I on to something?