, 22 tweets, 3 min read Read on Twitter
Thread. We (US) should not “go to war” with #Iran, nor do we need to. 1/22
The #MiddleEast IS nevertheless our problem. Stability of entire human world depends on two fragile corridors in Eastern hemisphere being held open, safe, accessible by US power. 2/22
One corridor is South China Sea/Strait of Malacca. 3/22
The other is maritime chokepoint of Red Sea and environs, including Persian Gulf & Arabian Peninsula, which are pathway/flank for Asian great powers to Red Sea & points west. 4/22
If those 2 corridors are not held open & neutrally accessible, they WILL be held closed and exploited for political extortion by an E. hemisphere hegemon. 5/22
With state of tech in 21st cent, rapidity w/which such a hegemon/oligarchy of hegemons can gain meaningful control of hemisphere is much greater than you think. 6/22
But complete hegemonic dominance not needed to affect security of US. What’s needed is enough counter-influence to undermine our alliances in Far East & Europe/N. Africa. 7/22
Those alliances enable us to defend our ocean bastions effectively, at sustainable cost. Lose Suez/Red Sea/PG chokepoint network & we WILL lose low-cost Atlantic dominance. 8/22
Same in Far East: lose SCS/Malacca & we WILL lose low-cost Pacific dominance. 9/22
We need low-cost dominance in Atlantic, Pacific. The most basic nature of US strategic reality: We’re a maritime nation. 10/22
US, Canada, Mexico, nations south to Darien Gap are huge functional “island.” We own the sea, or it owns us. That will never change; tech will only aggravate the reality. 11/22
Good news: (1) Holding the 2 Eastern hemisphere corridors open & neutrally accessible is positive, absolute good for everyone. 12/22
Regime(s) of geographic exclusion/extortion administered by hegemon(s) are NEVER better – for anyone but the hegemon, & then it’s a ticking time-bomb. 13/22
US has been historically remarkable for degree to which we guarantee openness & neutrality of sea/air space, rather than enforcing exclusionary/extortionate hegemony. (Better in E. hem than W. hem in this regard, to be sure, but still unique.) 14/22
(2) Alliances on either end of E. hemisphere lower cost of ocean-bastion defense; enable load-sharing for E. hem problems; develop natural partners in commerce, culture, knowledge 15/22
Having partners & allies throughout E. hemisphere enhances factor (2), esp. when necessary to defend/stabilize the 2 key corridors. 16/22
Alliances not just pragmatic for security, stability but a positive good (although they can develop drawbacks over time & require review, tending). 17/22
US does not need to go to war w/Iran, but Red Sea corridor/environs best stabilized by balance of naturally/pre-existing nation-states there, not under attack from … 18/22
… aspiring radical hegemon, or held at existential risk by such a hegemon. Radical Iran seeks to be that hegemon & needs countering. Regional allies/partners willing to carry load for own defense but … 19/22
… benefit from superpower leadership on regional problem. US is ONLY great power that will lead from superior strength for more general good & principle as well as own interests. 20/22
Not everything in E. hemisphere is US interest. But Suez/Red Sea/PG corridor is. Essential that we exercise a role there. Doesn’t have to be armed combat. Right now no reason why it should be. 21/22
But does have to involve armed vigilance & all elements of national power: diplo, info, military, econ. All this PLUS potential for nuclear/ICBM-armed Iran = core US interest. End thread. 22/22
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