All Bets Are ON

Ian Welsh
Sat, 09 Mar 2002 14:33:56

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<P>And my first thought was: are they insane?&nbsp; Tac nukes?&nbsp; If the US uses tac nukes all bets are off.<BR><BR></P></DIV>
<DIV></DIV>Subject: All Bets Are ON 
<DIV></DIV>Date: Sat, 09 Mar 2002 08:15:16 EST 
<DIV></DIV>John Hall and I made a private bet a month or so ago: I said I believed we (the US) would find an excuse to attack North Korea. John, I've forgotten the timeline - was it six months? And was the bet $50? 
<DIV></DIV>from Slate's today's papers: 
<DIV></DIV><SNIP>A LAT contributing writer got hold of "Nuclear Posture Review," a 
<DIV></DIV>top-secret report sent by the Bush administration to Congress on 
<DIV></DIV>January 8. The target countries named, in addition to the "axis," 
<DIV></DIV>are Syria, Libya, Russia and China. "This is dynamite," says a 
<DIV></DIV>Washington peacenik. "I can imagine what these countries are 
<DIV></DIV>going to be saying at the U.N." Another adds, "Dr. Strangelove is 
<DIV></DIV>clearly still alive at the Pentagon." The report details the 
<DIV></DIV>potential use of smaller, "theater" nuclear weapons that could be 
<DIV></DIV>aimed at specific battle targets. Supporters argue that these 
<DIV></DIV>baby nukes would function as deterrents because, without fear of 
<DIV></DIV>devastating collateral damage, the Pentagon would not hesitate to 
<DIV></DIV>use them. 
<DIV></DIV>According to the report, specific scenarios in which nuclear 
<DIV></DIV>weapons might be deployed include "the Arab-Israeli conflict, in 
<DIV></DIV>a war between China and Taiwan, or in an attack from North Korea 
<DIV></DIV>on the south." (LAT's wording.)</SNIP> 
<DIV></DIV>Of course, my first reaction was "How the hell did this get leaked?" My second: "Is this responsible reporting?" 
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