Not long ago, as reported by ABC News, Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney criticized his opponent, president Barack Obama, for not doing enough to stop the Iranian development of nuclear weapons.
“If Barack Obama gets re-elected, Iran will have a nuclear weapon…and I’m not willing to allow your generation to have to worry about a threat from Iran or anyone else that nuclear material be used against Americans,” Romney said.
I’ve written previously about the hypocrisy of much political campaign talk about Iran’s nuclear weapons program and the ability of this (or any) American president to influence its eventual (and inevitable) outcome. I’ll say it again: short of bombing it to the Stone Age (which no one can seriously advocate), the American president can do nothing to prevent any other highly-motivated and highly-resourced country from developing nuclear weapons. The science is known, the materials and technology are available, the expertise exists. Sanctions (economic, trade, or otherwise), diplomatic action, even targeted military action will not prevent anything. These steps can only make nuclear weapon development take longer and be more costly, so, at best, temporarily forestall the inevitable.
So, Romney can say he won’t “allow” Iran to have nuclear weapons all he wants; it’s merely campaign ‘sound and fury.’ And it’s mighty telling that, when pressed, Romney hasn’t been able to articulate a concrete path toward the stance he suggests Obama can’t deliver. Know why? The path doesn’t, in fact, exist.
In this election season, can’t you at least be honest about that one little thing, Mitt?