Monday, September 19, 2005

My Little Furlough In New York

I apologize for the absense on my blog. I appreciate the traffic I have been receiving, although it would be better to have more comments. For reasons I will explain, I will not comment on anything that happened in New York. Although there is much I want to say about Katrina and our government inefficiency, as well as my country's terrorist "President". A man who used to torture and execute people for years in Tehran's prison for political prisoners.

Its as if the trashiest, most redneck backward people in our country were suddenly put into power in 79. If Iran had trailer parks, the country's elite would be the trailer trash. We have a saying for people like this in Iran. We call them "Dahati". To tide you over, I have a post from Ken Bergman I'm sure you will find interesting.

The Game of Risk

I was staring at a map of the Middle East today just to refresh my memory of exactly where certain nations and regions are and whom they border with. This map displays each nation with a different color and each region with a different shade of the national color. There was the tiny sliver of Israel surrounded by the Mediterranean Sea, Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, Egypt, and you can easily wave to Saudi Arabia across the Red Sea from Elat. And there was Iran, surrounded by American-controlled Iraq to the west and American-controlled Afghanistan to the east, along with American “friendly” nations like Pakistan and Turkey. Looking at these colors and realizing the current political layout, I couldn’t help but think back to when I’d play the board game Risk.

If you want to know how the world really works, play the game Risk. When I played that game as a teenager, my mindset wasn’t on securing my territory, keeping strategic positions, or having a deterring army, but letting someone else have a continent so it would be a fair game. I was always overrun every time I let that happen. I appeased others too often, and as a result I was taken over. This world is governed by the aggressive use of force and preying on other’s weaknesses. This game is the perfect analogy for our world. It’s probably why this game was created; the creator knew how this world works. You must be stronger than the enemy to deter them, but you also must be more brutal than the enemy to defeat them. Not all civilizations act civil, and civilized people are weak compared to barbarians. This game revolves around not only strategy, but also self-preservation and the will to make the necessary actions to keep you in the game.

Sometimes people team up to take over someone else’s country when that someone gets too powerful, then turn on each other as the game progresses. This is true of situations like the U.S. teaming up with the USSR to defeat Hitler, and then we had the Cold War with the USSR. We had to team up with radical Muslims to defeat the USSR in Afghanistan, then the Muslims unleashed the terror attacks against us and we in turn crushed them. We had to team up with Saddam to try to defeat Iran, then Saddam turned on the region to control the oil supplies with our weapons, killing hundreds of thousands, and we had to go to war with him twice. We are currently teamed up with regimes like the Saudis of Saudi Arabia and Musharraf of Pakistan to defeat radical Muslims, however sometime in the future they will probably turn on us or others with our training and weapons. It always happens, just like the game of Risk.

Now let’s take a closer look at the players on our board. Where Israel is concerned, they are completely surrounded by hostile neighbors. Let’s be clear, if Israel did not have nuclear weapons, it would not exist. However, they are acting as I did as a teenager with their withdrawal from the Gaza settlements. The desire for peace is Israel’s weakness being preyed upon by its enemies. It’s obvious that Gaza is of strategic importance, and Israel lost it. This is where Israel’s enemies will gather their strength, along with the West Bank as stated by the PA. In time, they will be able to cut Israel in half, and a house divided cannot stand. As soon as an Iran has nuclear capabilities, Israel’s enemies will be on equal footing. Destroying Israel is of greater importance to these Muslims than the amount of Muslims Israel will be able to kill as they go down swinging, so say Iranian leaders. They may not even have to resort to annihilating Israel; their frog is already simmering in the pot. Nevertheless, once Israel is gone the different factions of militant Islamic groups will be at each other’s throats for control of what’s left over.

Iran is in the same situation as Israel. They too are surrounded by hostile neighbors, namely America. If there were ever a full on assault against Iran, they’d get it from all fronts. With the discontent of the Iranian people towards their leaders, they wouldn’t stand a chance. We know this won’t happen though, because diplomacy triumphs in the western world - a weakness the Iranians are taking full advantage of. The difference between Israel and Iran is that Israel is deterring its enemies while Iran’s enemies are deterring themselves. In the meantime, Iranian leaders are growing in power and capabilities, and soon they will actually be able to deter their enemies. Iran’s only weakness is its divide from within. Iran, like Israel, can fall under internal unrest. It did not take many dissenters to overthrow the Shah, nor will it take many to overthrow the Ayatollah.

We cannot leave America out of this discussion. America has the strength and ability to defeat any specific enemy, but its divide from within prevents its leaders from using the force necessary to defeat and deter its enemies. That is America’s weakness. There are two sides in any war. One side will win, and you will be on one side or the other. For example, if you say Iran should be able to develop nuclear capabilities, you are on Iran’s side. If you say America should take out Iran before it becomes a greater threat, then you are on America’s side. If your reasons for saying Iran should be able to get nukes aren’t pro-Iran (you think it’s only fair that if we have them so should they), how would the outcome be any different if you were pro-Iran? I gave away positions when I played Risk to be fair, and I lost. So will America. While America is distracted by internal problems, its enemies can grow and conspire. Also, America may be able to defeat any enemy, but it cannot defeat all its enemies at once. The other players will team up against the most powerful player eventually; it always happens.

Then there is always a player who protects their borders heavily and seems to remain dormant most of the game. What becomes obvious is that they’re building themselves up for the final battle. Once all the other countries are weak from trying to defeat each other, this power will make their move. They have a large enough army to march across the board, and they’ll usually win. The Romans tried it, Alexander tried it, the Muslims tried it, Hitler tried it, but they all fell eventually. Currently the one country that has the ability and manpower to do this very thing though is China.

The most powerful player will eventually make the move to control the board, but at the same time will not be able to protect certain positions leaving vulnerability. That is the game of Risk. Inevitably, someone will make that drastic move that determines who wins the game. Who will take that risk? Who do you want to see win?

~Ken Bergma


Blogger Rosemary said...

This is precisely the reason I have one eye on China and one on Iran! lol. I know that China controls NK. That is why NK is such a pain. With China hooking up with Russia, there is your trifecta. Can they do it? Not on my life!

Thanks for stopping over. Korosh is a very fine team member over at Love America First. I am a member of his over at Iranian Bloggers in Jail.

We have been fighting for Akbar Ganji's freedom, along with many others. It is nice to meet another person who also cares. Thank you.

11:21 PM  

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