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Striking Iran's Nuclear Program45:34
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There’s a hot debate on right now over U.S. military action against Iran’s nuclear program. High stakes. We’ll tune in.

In this photo released by the Iranian President's Office, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, center, listens to a technician during his visit of the Natanz Uranium Enrichment Facility April 8, 2008. (AP)
In this photo released by the Iranian President's Office, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, center, listens to a technician during his visit of the Natanz Uranium Enrichment Facility April 8, 2008. (AP)

Yogi Berra nailed it with his “déjà vu all over again.”  That’s how it feels.  When the subject is Iran and war, you can’t help remembering how the US slid to war in Iraq.  The assumptions.  The arguments.  The sense of  urgency, inevitability.  They’re back.  Not locked in.  Not for sure.  But hot.

The country’s tired of war.  But Iran’s nuclear program goes forward.  New sanctions are grinding in.  Pressure’s rising.  Israel’s itchy.  And arguments for and against a US military strike are in the spotlight.

This hour, On Point:  the heart of the debate over Iran, nukes, and war.
-Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Matthew Kroenig, professor of government at Georgetown University. His article in the current issue of Foreign Affairs is, “Time to Attack Iran: Why a Strike is the Least Bad Option.”

Colin Kahl, professor in the security studies program in the Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University. His article in the current issue of Foreign Affairs is, “Not Time to Attack to Iran: Why War Should be a Last Resort.”

From Tom's Reading List

Foreign Policy "Despite all the hype, Iran's nuclear program has yet to violate international law. It's time to calm down, think, and above all halt the rush to war. "

Foreign Affairs "But skeptics of military action fail to appreciate the true danger that a nuclear-armed Iran would pose to U.S. interests in the Middle East and beyond. And their grim forecasts assume that the cure would be worse than the disease — that is, that the consequences of a U.S. assault on Iran would be as bad as or worse than those of Iran achieving its nuclear ambitions."

Foreign Affairs "the lesson of Iraq, the last preventive war launched by the United States, is that Washington should not choose war when there are still other options, and it should not base its decision to attack on best-case analyses of how it hopes the conflict will turn out. "

Map: Iranian Nuclear Facilities

Iran's nuclear facilities include reactors, enrichment plants, and research centers spread around the country.

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This program aired on January 24, 2012.

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