War with Iran: Real, Horrific Costs, but What Benefits?

Published in the Globe and Mail, November 26, 2012

The Munk Debate on the question of war with Iran, to be held on Monday night in Toronto, could not be more timely. With elections finally decided in the United States and scheduled for January in Israel and July in Iran, all three countries will soon have leaders operating on new mandates.

If they cannot stop the momentum towards a showdown at this point, when their new mandates are fresh, then it is possible that a sense of exhaustion with diplomacy will give way to active planning for a military confrontation in the second half of 2013 or early 2014.

What would the war look like? Israel’s surgical strikes on Iraq in 1981 and Syria in 2007 are not good guides.

These attacks were on single, isolated nuclear sites, both of which were “cold” – that is, not in operation. Iran’s program has many sites and the key ones are “hot.” They have nuclear fuel that could be dispersed over civilian populations….

Read the rest of this article on the Globe and Mail website.

Watch the video of the related CIPS event (CPAC).

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