Editor’s Note: Every week, Wikistrat’s Facebook followers engage in a 24-hour exclusive Q&A drill with one of Wikistrat’s Senior Analysts via Facebook. This week we featured Wikistrat’s Chief Analyst Dr. Thomas P.M. Barnett.
Q: Timothy Kelly- Dr. Barnett, how do you think nuclear proliferation will play out in the Middle East?
A: I think the Obama Administration’s oil-focused sanctions will put immense pressure on the Iranian regime to cave in on the nuke question, possibly to the point of striking out in some manner that Israel – and perhaps the U.S. – can use as a pretext for launching substantial strikes against Iran’s nuclear facilities. But if I had to bet, I would lay money on Israel striking first for its own reasons versus Tehran providing the excuse. Iran has always struck me as incredibly aware of which line-crossing activities will elicit direct military responses, and, much in the vein of WS’s recent simulation on this subject, I think Tehran knows well that it needs to avoid any genuine threat to global oil markets – lest it trigger an “all-in” military response from the United States . . .
Monday, July 30, 2012 at 10:04 AM