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Downplaying Iran/al-Qaeda Ties

Dan Darling has penned an important article at The Weekly Standard. In it, he politely asks why Iran's links to al-Qaeda are being downplayed. Any energy spent on the links seem to be spent in the (public) effort to downplay them rather than investigate them.

As the Iran debate has progressed, a somewhat disturbing trend has emerged in which those who have previously warned of the dangers posed by Tehran have now sought to ignore or downplay these earlier statements. Perhaps this is because they are fearful of the prospect of a military confrontation with Iran and do not wish to be seen as supplying anything resembling a casus belli. This is essentially the reverse of what the Bush administration is accused of doing during the run-up to the war in Iraq, with information being presented selectively for the purpose of downplaying the Iranian threat. This seems unwise. [...]

The status of (or the willingness to conduct) the investigation into the information unearthed by the 9/11 Commission is extremely relevant to the current Iran debate. If Iran, or its Hezbollah proxies, are shown to have assisted the transit al Qaeda members whose numbers included the future 9/11 hijackers--under what appear to be extremely curious circumstances--shouldn't those facts be included in discussions over how to deal with Iran?

That is the rhetorical question of the fortnight from this position. The answer, of course, is logical. But the fact of the matter remains: The truth cannot be hidden from indefinitely.

We need to learn what that truth is and confront it as appropriate. If we have learned anything from September 11, it is that procrastination and avoidance are more deadly for us and empowering to those who would slaughter us than the alternative.