Paul Pillar »
Fears of a bomb in Tehran’s hands are overhyped, and a war to prevent it would be a disaster.
…Thus we find ourselves at a strange pass. Those in the United States who genuinely yearn for war are still a neoconservative minority. But the danger that war might break out—and that the hawks will get their way—has nonetheless become substantial. The U.S. has just withdrawn the last troops from one Middle Eastern country where it fought a highly costly war of choice with a rationale involving weapons of mass destruction. Now we find ourselves on the precipice of yet another such war—almost purely because the acceptable range of opinion on Iran has narrowed and ossified around the “sensible” idea that all options must be pursued to prevent the country from acquiring nuclear weapons. >continue<
A scholarly long read well worth attention. The dangerously unexamined notion that Iran cannot be allowed to possess nuclear weapons continually reasserts itself in a building siren song. An ‘existential threat to Israel’ gets assumed as a given in what looks like a charade to deflect attention from the real worry, potential threats to Western influence and de facto control over the Persian Gulf. And as this dubious line falls into the trap of taking itself too seriously, feverishly pressing Iran on all fronts, ironically it becomes harder to imagine any Iranian’s capacity to ascertain a rational argument for not acquiring nuclear weapons.
The present amplitude and velocity of war talk enjoins the highest duty to vigorously question whole networks of assumptions.
Potential, interesting topics I’ve been reading up on for a while for a literature review school project, most of which are either too complicated for me at the moment, too broad or I can’t find enough primary sources:
- Dissociative Identity Disorder (multiple personalities)
- Fugue State (person loses identity and assumes another)
- Basis/Function of Dreams (neurobiological and psychological hypotheses)
- Quantum Loop Gravity (space is not a continuous fabric; it’s discrete and interconnected)
- E8 theory (geometric “theory of everything” from a surfer, no less)
- holographic principle (our reality may be a 3d projection of a 2d hologram)
- fusion energy (a lot better than fission (think Japan), but not any time soon)
- problematic invasive species in a certain national park (problematic = kudzu for instance)
- dark energy (our universe is expanding faster and faster; this is a culprit)
- hypothetical propulsion systems (for spacecraft, like warp drives; too hypothetical, really)
- retrocausality (influences from the future shape the present (free will?!))
- quantum computing (performing computations on individual atoms)
- infection-based hypotheses for Schizophrenia (the new avenue of exploration)
Now I’m thinking about writing it on artificial photosynthesis. That is if I can recover from substantial brainmelt.