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  Why No Clear Course From Bush?
by Joel Rosenberg
[novelist] 1/30/07

(Filed from a Muslim country in the Middle East)

For the last several days, I've been meeting with Arab and Iranian pastors and Christian leaders, briefing them on the latest threats to the region, the prophecies of Ezekiel 38 and 39, and the implications of a coming political war or a prophetic one for each of their countries. More on that when I get home. But it's certainly been an interesting environment from which to watch President Bush's State of the Union address and answer Middle Easterners' questions about it.

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Joel C. Rosenberg is the New York Times best-selling author of THE LAST JIHAD (2002), THE LAST DAYS (2003), and THE EZEKIEL OPTION (2005), with more than one million copies in print. He previously served as a senior advisor to several U.S. and Israeli leaders, including Steve Forbes, Rush Limbaugh, former Israeli Deputy Prime Minister Natan Sharansky, and former Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. He has been interviewed on more than 300 radio and TV shows, including ABC's "Nightline," CBN's 700 Club, CNN Headline News, Fox News Channel, MSNBC, the Michael Reagan Show, the Rush Limbaugh Show and the Sean Hannity Show.. Website - [go to Rosenberg Index]

The Ezekiel Option

The Last Days

The Last Jihad


Since I've been in the region, for example, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has renewed his vow to annihilate the United States, as well as Israel. North Korea, we learned, is working hand-in-glove with Iran on its nuclear weapons program. Syria's foreign minister, while meeting with Ahmadinejad this past week, accused the U.S. of trying to carry out a "massacre of Muslims." Yet President Bush chose not to use his State of the Union address to lay out a clear and convincing plan to stop Iran from going nuclear. Why?

The threat could not be more clear. "Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad…assured that the United States and the Zionist regime of Israel will soon come to the end of their lives," reported the Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting company (IRIB), the official Iranian state run news agency, after Ahmadinejad met with Syria's foreign minister. So why President Bush seem to hedge on the Iranian issue in his speech to the nation? It's a question many are asking. Here are three possible scenarios:

SCENARIO #1: President Bush just doesn't get just how serious the Iranian nuclear threat really is. He sees Iran the way Speaker Pelosi and her leadership team do - as an annoyance, not a would-be annihilator.

SCENARIO #2: The President believes that while the Iranian nuclear threat is very serious, it is not yet urgent, and thus there is no need to prepare Americans immediately for a new war in the Middle East in 2007 or 2008. Recently declassified CIA assessments say Iran won't have the Bomb until 2010 or 2011. That could suggest the President believes his job is to lay the groundwork of diplomacy and military planning and that it will be the job of the next President to act if diplomacy fails.

SCENARIO #3: President Bush believes the Iranian threat is extremely urgent and is actively preparing for a major offensive against Iran this spring or summer, but he is ready to tip his hand. He feels the wisest course of action is to keep the public, the media and fellow world leaders focused for the moment on the need to win decisively in Iraq, while he orders the Pentagon to preposition more military personnel, warships, missiles and supplies into the region for the coming war with Iran.

Now, I don't buy the first scenario for a moment. This President gets it. Let there be no doubt about that. He told us Iran is part of the "Axis of Evil" in 2002 and he has seen all the evil the Iranian leadership has done since then.

Thus, the real key to understanding his State of the Union address lies in either Scenario #2 or #3. If it's #3, then the President is doing a masterful job at keeping everyone in this part of the world off balance. Rumors of an American strike against Iran - coming as soon as this spring - are running rampant throughout the region. On the one hand, Bush orders a second carrier battle group to the Persian Gulf. On the other hand, the State Department denies any attack is being contemplated. No one is quite sure what to believe, but they are getting nervous, that's for certain. If it's #2, then let's pray to God that the President is right. After all, there is no margin here for error. CRO

copyright 2007 - Joel Rosenberg




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