The Twelver Apocalypse

Andrew Bostom has written a new book, Iran’s Final Solution for Israel: The Legacy of Jihad and Shi’ite Islamic Jew-Hatred in Iran. In it he analyzes jihad and Jew-hatred in the Persian theocracy over the course of history. In his view, the relatively secular Pahlavi dynasty in the 20th century was an anomalous interval in an otherwise continuous history of apocalyptic Shi’a jihad in Iran. The mullahs who have ruled the country since 1979 are thus representative of an indigenous tradition among Shi’ites in Persia, rather than a sudden outburst of “extremism”.

Dr. Bostom has been appearing on various conservative media outlets to talk about his book. The following video is from his discussion with Monica Crowley on her radio show last weekend. Many thanks to KGS for YouTubing the audio:

Below are excerpts from Ed Driscoll’s interview with Dr. Bostom at Pajamas Media:

Mr. Driscoll: […] I think I can guess what Iran’s ultimate goal is, but in your estimation, how will they achieve what you describe as their final solution for Israel?

Mr. Bostom: Well, this seems to have been the goal of their nuclear program for a long time now. And whether they would actually use a ballistic missile to deliver a nuclear weapon to Israel, [or] turn it over to proxies, who could do something that would be akin to a mass suicide operation, it’s pretty clear from their own rhetoric, which now spans really the entire Khomeini era, even to some extent the pronouncements of Khomeini before he assumed power, that it’s something to be taken quite seriously.

And when you also consider the regime’s willingness to withstand sanctions and all kinds of international pressure not to develop nuclear weapons, you again have to take them at their word.

Mr. Driscoll: Andrew, let me quote from your book’s preface, which begins, “With great fanfare, and giddy expectations of continued diplomatic success, the so-called ‘P5 +1’ interim agreement was announced on November 24, 2013. Ostensibly, these negotiations were going to eliminate Iran’s ability to produce nuclear weapons, and constrain the regime’s hegemonic aspirations, including its oft-repeated bellicose threats to destroy the Jewish State of Israel.”

For those who aren’t familiar with the term, who are the P5+1? And how did they propose disarming Iran, which has long been hell-bent, seemingly literally so, to acquire the Bomb?

Mr. Bostom: The +1, which I’ll give you first, is Germany.

Mr. Driscoll: Yeah, and I wanted to ask you about the +1 when you’re done.

Mr. Bostom: It’s the permanent members of the U.N. Security Council, since the U.N.’s founding; the major powers, the major post-World War One powers: Russia [from back when it was still the] Soviet Union; China; Britain; [America]; and France, plus Germany.

And the idea was that you could create a monitored enrichment program for Iran. Now, the fundamental flaw in this premise is that serious nuclear experts understand that the only way to guarantee, particularly with a regime like Iran, because it’s the same processes; whether it’s enrichment to so called, you know, only nuclear fuel grade of five percent or, you know, twenty percent to eighty percent and well into the high enrichment range for weapons, it’s the same exact processes.

So serious weapons prevention experts argue — and they have argued in open Congressional testimony — that the only way to assure that you won’t have a regime like Iran develop nuclear weapons, is to dismantle infrastructure. And that’s exactly what we’ve enshrined instead of dismantling.

Mr. Driscoll: The +1 that you mentioned in that formulation of P5+1 is Germany. What is their relationship with Iran?

Mr. Bostom: Well, they have had a rather apologetic relationship with regard to the entire process. And I don’t see them as exerting significant pressure on Iran.

But it’s the United States, in reality, that’s the major culprit. And the fact that we even entered into these negotiations is a fundamental flaw.

And I think this has to do with a mindset that unfortunately crosses the political spectrum now. It’s much worse with the Obama administration, admittedly, in terms of getting into the negotiations. But the conservative alternatives, as I discuss at great length in the book, are not much better. There’s always a worse. But the conservative alternatives are not much better.

Mr. Driscoll: Well, has the West forgotten the early days of the Iranian revolution, including the totalitarian edicts of the Ayatollah Khomeini and the Iranian Hostage Crisis?

Mr. Bostom: The Obama administration is basically living up to the pronouncements that were made in an op-ed that I devote much attention to called — I mean, it’s almost laughable, but it’s not funny — “Trusting Khomeini.” This was a complete whitewash of who Khomeini was and what his ideology was and why he had been demonized, it was argued, in the New York Times, by Richard Falk, who’s gone on to become infamous for his endless calumnies against Israel, as a so-called international rights lawyer.

But that mindset has simply been transferred, now, by the Obama administration to trusting Khamenei. And obviously, the ideology has not changed one iota. There’s a very nice continuum between Khomeini and Khamenei.

But Ed, the conservative alternative thus far, basically, with a few exceptions, has been well, look at the Green Revolution and the Green revolutionaries. And they offer an alternative to topple the regime and replace it with something, I guess, that supposedly represents certain secular traditions in the West.

Again, there’s always worse. This is not as delusional as naked appeasement, which is the Obama administration policy. But there’s absolutely no evidence to support this hypothesis. And in fact, there’s countervailing evidence.

The ideologues of the Green Movement you can identify and read their writings. There’s not a dime’s worth of difference between them and Khomeini on fundamental issues like the Jihad, like the application of the Sharia, like these heinous Shi’ite-specific regulations which deal with the physical impurity of the infidel, and with their Jew hatred.

So I — I think we’re caught between Scylla and Charybdis right now, in policymaking circles, which is — which is not only terribly frustrating, it’s very frightening.

Mr. Driscoll: Andrew, at least as of the time we’re recording this interview, the Obama administration seems much more preoccupied with doing nothing about Vladimir Putin’s Russia than doing nothing about Iran acquiring the bomb. Has this administration shown any ability to successfully juggle two world crises at once?

Mr. Bostom: None. None. And again, I think there are differences, actually quite significant differences in the two situations. But the idea that you can disengage, and in the case of Iran, engage in naked appeasement, is probably the constant between the two situations.

Read the rest, and listen to the full podcast of the interview, at Pajamas Media.