10 February 2012

Federal Lies

Consider the Algiers Accords:

The United States pledges that it is and from now on will be the policy of the United States not to intervene, directly or indirectly, politically or militarily, in Iran's internal affairs. [Page 1]

If recent federal actions are any indication, this is nothing more than a bold-faced lie.  Of course, that diplomatic treaties are so quickly and easily disregarded by any country when so doing is in their best interest comes as no surprise, but the fact that a government’s promise is meaningless certainly explains why foreign affairs have devolved into such meaningless trivialities.

No one can be trusted.  As such, negotiating is worthless.  Why should Iran negotiate with the United States when the US has already demonstrated a willingness to break its promises?  And is it not reasonable for Iran to seek nukes, since doing so gives them more negotiating power with the United States?  As Denzel Washington once said, in Man on Fire, “a bullet always tells the truth.”  People may lie, especially if they are politicians or diplomats, but weapons keep everyone honest.

Ultimately, the United States’ foreign policy problems boil down to not acting in good faith, not acting honestly.  Dishonesty begets more dishonesty, begets paranoia, begets fanciful rationalizations.  US foreign policy has all these hallmarks.  The nations with the US negotiates lie directly to us.  The US then begins to imagine that other countries are out to get them (hmm, I wonder why?), and then rationalizes reasons to go to war with its perceived enemies.

Perhaps war with Iran is inevitable; perhaps they were always going to attack us; perhaps honest diplomacy would have failed.  We’ll never know.  But was it a good idea to give Iran legitimate reasons for its actions?

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