Glenn Greenwald (and many others) point out that it appears to be more than a missed opportunity for diplomacy – it looks as if Bush has started to beat the drums of war.

He accused the Iranian government of ?providing material support for attacks on American troops? and vowed to ?seek out and destroy the networks providing advanced weaponry and training to our enemies.? But those networks are located in Iran, which means that search and destroy missions on such networks would necessarily include some incursion into Iranian territory, whether by air or ground.

Hours before the speech, the White House released a Powerpoint presentation with details about the president?s new policy. ?Increase operations against Iranian actors? was listed in the ?Key Tactical Shifts? section. As The New York Times reported: ?One senior administration official said this evening that the omission of the usual wording about seeking a diplomatic solution [to the Iranian nuclear stand-off] ?was not accidental.??

In fact, Glenn lays out a laundry list that shows that Bush appears to be intentionally escalating tensions with Iran. In many cases, the rhetoric coming out of 1600 Pennsylvania Ave is virtually identical to the language used before the invasion of Iraq. Glenn continues:

I think there is a tendency to dismiss the possibility of some type of war with Iran because it is so transparently destructive and detached from reality that it seems unfathomable. But if there is one lesson that everyone should have learned over the last six years, it is that there is no action too extreme or detached from reality to be placed off limits to this administration. The President is a True Believer and the moral imperative of his crusade trumps the constraints of reality.

Based on the evidence before us, and the fact that US troops just raided an Iranian consulate in Iraq, I have to agree with Glenn that it seems inevitable now that serious armed conflict with Iran is just over the horizon, and Bush is doing everything he can to encourage that.

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