JUST POSTED ON TAP ONLINE: THE DREAM-KILLER. Matt explains why war with Iran is a far more serious possibility than many seem to think, and why understanding this is "especially important for liberals hoping to think creatively about the future of American foreign policy: a war with Iran would, in essence, render all of our grand schemes moot."
We all know what damage the invasion of Iraq has done to the international system and America's standing in the world, but the damage caused by a second war in the Persian Gulf -- even one not involving a land invasion -- would be incalculably larger. Unlike in the Iraq case, there isn't anything even vaguely resembling a case for American action under international law. This war would be unilateralism on steroids, leaving the United States utterly isolated in the global community. The international agenda, as a consequence, would shift largely to one dominated by the question of how to contain, constrain, and control American military power. Schemes to reform existing institutions and make them more effective would be moot. The only problem anyone would be genuinely interested in solving would be Washington's erratic behavior. Meanwhile, the worthy cause of waging war on al-Qaeda would become more and more indistinguishable from a looming clash of civilizations.
Read the whole thing.