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the West occurred desire to contain Iran. Iran
is the obvious containment issue that is out there right now it’s a different
situation in the sense that Iran is not a global superpower to the extent that
the Soviet Union was but the idea of containment is one that’s very important
to think about I mean I think it is being thought about with regard to Iran
because the central question is this is time on our side in Iran I should point
out Kenan was always very careful to say that containment would not have worked
with Hitler because Hitler had his own timetable Hitler was convinced that he
had to dominate the world in his lifetime he didn’t believe anybody else was
competent to do that so containment Kenan said would never worked there the
only alternative was military defeat of Hitler Stalin was different styling
believed in the inevitable forces of history he believed that maybe not in his
own lifetime but over a long time the contradictions of capitalism would bring
capitalism to collapse and all kenan did was to flip the equation around and
say no it’s going to be the contradictions of communism that will do it so the critical
question which I’m now in the middle of filibustering because I don’t know the
answer to it the critical question is where does Iran fit within that system of
the contradictions there can be no doubt because we see these contradictions in
Iranian society constantly but with the leadership does the leadership itself
have some kind of timetable in the way that Hitler did are they prepared to
bring down everything around them in the interests of that timetable in which
case pre-emptive action may it be the only solution but as I think is probably
more likely I think the contradictions within that society or such that there
is no central dominant leadership there are factions within that within that
leadership it’s not at all clear to me what the Iranians would actually do with
a nuclear weapon if they were to get one yes it would create dangers in Middle
East but exactly how they would use it given the prospect of instant
retaliation from the Israelis and possibly from the Americans certainly is has
got to be wanting that they would think about so my weight of evidence always
qualifying judgments like this because nobody really knows for sure is that we
probably do have time for containment to work in containment may well be
working we’re calling it sanctions now but I think it’s the same kind of a
strategy just to increase the strain under which that society operates until
they get to the point where they decided sin their own entries not to do
whatever it is that we don’t want them to do

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