A complicated situation around Iran is discussed by political scientists and experts in more active way recently. Various attempts of American government to solve the Iranian problem are of a particular concern to political scientists. There is no doubt that current United States and Iran relations are on the brink of breaking the rules again: the parties exchange threatening statements and gestures, train an army and redeploy military contingent. In such a way, the US-Iranian conflict is one of the central issues of world politics during the last few years. Thus, the main aim of this project is to discuss two main courses of action for the U.S.: the first one is that the U.S. should go to war with Iran, while the second one is, vice versa, the U.S. should not go to war with Iran.
At the beginning of this project it is important to mention that for the United States modern wars are just a stage of reconstruction of many regions. The war is not as much a military operation to rout the enemy forces, because the main objective of the war is a profound social, cultural and political reconstruction of entire regions, where the enemy of the United States is situated. This transformation had begun long before the main spectacle of the military action had a place. For instance, such military action as the defeat of Yugoslavia, the Taliban, and Iraq is a step in the restructuring a large region, because a military action is always followed by a long period of sluggish political conflict on the occupied territories.
Therefore, the true conditions of a possible military conflict are related to value-ideological field, and to the potential role of Iran as one of the key components of the system security of the Eurasian continent. In addition, the global economy, which shows an increasing dependence on its energy resort component in recent years, depends on the ways in which the solution of this US-Iran crisis will be found.
Supporting the point of view that the United Sates should go to war with Iran it is necessary to dwell on several moments which are the situation around the Strait of Hormuz, developing nuclear weapons by Iran, and contemporary economical situation in the United States.
According to Sanger & Lowrey (2011), the following information helps us to understand the limits of possible threat: “A senior Iranian official on Tuesday delivered a sharp threat in response to economic sanctions being readied by the United States, saying his country would retaliate against any crackdown by blocking all oil shipments through the Strait of Hormuz, a vital artery for transporting about one-fifth of the world’s oil supply.”
The whole world knows how important the Strait of Hormuz is, and Washington with its allies is well aware that the Iranians with their military means can close it for a long time. Erlanger (2012) stated that the Strait of Hormuz is not only a major transit point of the world, through which a huge amount of energy is transported, but it is also strategically important ‘bottle neck’. If we talk about the Strait of Hormuz, and its relationship with Iran, here it is important to add two important points. The first point is the geographical position of the Strait of Hormuz, while the second one is the role of Iran in the joint management of this strategic waterway in accordance with international law and its sovereign national rights. Thinking about the benefits of the war, we see that, in this case, the war will help to avoid changes in oil transfer and it will be a really great benefit to the United States.
The next point is nuclear weapons development, because the Iranian nuclear threat to the world becomes from the imaginary more real, and the reasons for going to war against the country are becoming more and more actual, following statements by Iran to start enriching uranium to 20%.
The United States should go to war with Iran also by the reason that it will be a convenient moment to change situation in the world. On the one hand, it is necessary to turn attention of the world community from developing a systemic crisis of capitalism, to try to find a way out of this crisis through the war. On the other hand, the U.S. wants to punish one of the future members of ‘new nuclear club’. It is likely that the American elite wants to defuse the situation in the war and sees Iran as a country that is at the intersection of the U.S. interests.
In addition, there is one global cause of a possible war. Due to the fact that the West is so mired in debt, played too long in post-industrialism, the industry has gone to India and China; and science, finance and education are trying to follow leaving industry, too. That is, the center of the world will shift to the East. Accordingly, this is another reason for the war.
Observing the second point that the United States should not go to the war with Iran it is also possible to discuss several moments. At a time when the U.S. economy is experiencing serious difficulties and the White House is waiting tough election campaign the next year, the war with Iran is not in Obama’s interests. It becomes obvious that the war with Iran would destroy American economy and might even start World War III. American government should also understand that a better variation in this situation is to find the solution of this conflict by peaceful means.
Cirincione & Grotto (2007) stated that for the purpose to persuade Iran to abandon nuclear weapons development, it is necessary to use other means. It seems that military action can only delay the receipt of such weapons by Tehran, but not prevent it.
As it was previously stated, and according to Hunter & Gienger (2012), the situation in the Strait of Hormuz has a very conflict character and its negative solution will change everything, but the United States are also ready to find other decision of this conflict excluding war. For instance, nowadays the U.S. is working with the member states of the Cooperation Council for the Arab States of the Gulf (CCASG) (which are Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, and United Arab Emirates) above the problem to redirect their oil pipeline to bypass the Strait of Hormuz by bringing it directly to the Indian Ocean, the Red and Mediterranean seas.
Observing the scenario of possible war with Iran, the United States also understands that the geography is against the Pentagon in this case, too: the naval power of the U.S. in the Persian Gulf has its limitations. Of course, according to Drury & Parker (2011), it is a well-known fact that the U.S. Naval Forces, which include the Navy and Coast Guard, are superior to all others fleets and naval forces in the world. The U.S. submarine fleet and ocean fleet have no equal in their power, and any naval power is not in a position to challenge it, but excellence does not mean invincibility in the case with Iran. The naval forces of the United States would still be vulnerable in the Strait of Hormuz. The narrowness of the Persian Gulf makes it similar to the channel, at least in the strategic and military terms. Figuratively speaking, aircraft carriers and battleships of the U.S. will be locked up by the narrow waters of the Persian Gulf and near its coast.
Therefore, if it comes to the Gulf War, or even the Gulf of Oman, an impressive naval power of the United States will oppose and prevent the military potential of Iran as well as geographical factors. Azarova (2012) mentioned that not being able to operate in open waters, as the Indian or Pacific Ocean, the United States will have a much smaller margin of time for response, and more importantly, they won’t be able to fight at a safe (from a military point of view) remoteness. Thus, the whole arsenal of defensive naval systems of the U.S. intended to fight in the open waters at a safe distance, will be inapplicable in the Persian Gulf.
In conclusion, we have discussed two main courses of action for the United States for both supporting war and not going to war view points. It is a fact that a successful military operation against Iran would be a major success for the United States, however, the success of the mission is not completely guaranteed, Iran is a serious opponent; it has the potential to vengeance (terrorist attacks on Western countries, etc.). As a result, the military failure will be a very hard defeat, which may be followed by erosion of U.S. positions not only in the Middle East, but in Asia as a whole.