Remember that episode of Seinfeld where George decides to start doing the opposite of whatever his instincts tell him to, and his life starts getting better and better? That’s the general attitude one should take with the writings of Michael Rubin. That is, when Rubin blasts Joe Biden as “Tehran’s favorite senator,” one should conclude that Biden takes a responsible and prudent approach to relations with Iran.
That being said, this, from Rubin’s piece attacking Biden, is some seriously innovative intellectual dishonesty:
Khatami left office in 2005 without implementing substantial reform. Between 2000 and 2005, in an effort to engage Iran, European Union trade with that country nearly tripled. Yet far from assuming a moderate posture, “the elected representatives in Iran” allocated nearly 70 percent of the hard currency windfall into military and nuclear programs. The November 2007 National Intelligence Estimate affirmed the fruits of such investment when it found that Iran had pursued a nuclear weapons program until 2003.
That’s a very creative use of the NIE – which, if you’l recall, all but destroyed Rubin and his allies’ case for war. It’s especially creative considering that Rubin started questioning the legitimacy of the report as soon as it was released, and proceeded to write a piece for The Weekly Standard lambasting it, concluding that the NIE serves only to “confirm the intelligence community’s sloppiness.”
So which is it, Mike? Is the NIE proof of the folly of engagement, or is it typical hackwork from the Tehran symps at Langley? I expect consistency in my neoconservative hit jobs.