The release of the new National Intelligence Estimate this week put a damper on the plans of those conservatives who have been urging military action against Iran. The NIE found that Iran had stopped work on a suspected nuclear weapons program over four years ago and is still a decade away from being able to adapt their current nuclear energy program for military purposes.
The American public has maintained a strongly antiwar stance when it comes to Iran in recent months, and this new information will likely only strengthen this sentiment, despite the Bush administration’s saber-rattling. Gallup found in an early November poll, for example, that the public, by 73 percent to 18 percent, prefers economic and diplomatic efforts over military action against Iran.
A mid-October CNN poll echoed this sentiment, with 68 percent of the public flatly stating that it would oppose military action against Iran if the U.S. government decided to take such action and only 29 percent approving of such action.
The public, still in the midst of the Iraq debacle, is clearly in no mood to repeat the mistake with yet another country where the hype about weapons of mass destruction is not matched by reality. And these antiwar sentiments should soar even higher in the wake of the Iran NIE.