This video of Patrick Clawson speaking at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy is just vile:
I frankly think that crisis initiation is really tough, and it’s very hard for me to see how the United States at present can get us to war with Iran.
Crisis initiation? This is pure warmongering, pure belligerence. This is bad-guy mentality, war-profiteering-mentality, unjustified-slaughter-mentality — a point that future historians will relish.
There is a very clear protocol as to how the United States would go to war with Iran, or any other country. If a country were to attack the United States or her allies, or to pose an imminent and immediate threat of attack — defined in international law as a threat that is “instant, overwhelming, and leaving no choice of means, and no moment for deliberation” — then the United States could following an Act of Congress go to war.
Article 51 of the UN Charter states the following:
Article 51: Nothing in the present Charter shall impair the inherent right of collective or individual self-defence if an armed attack occurs against a member of the United Nations, until the Security Council has taken the measures necessary to maintain international peace and security. Measures taken by members in exercise of this right of self-defence shall be immediately reported to the Security Council and shall not in any way affect the authority and responsibility of the Security Council under the present Charter to take at any time such action as it deems necessary in order to maintain or restore international peace and security.
Anything else — including any of the provocations and covert operations that Clawson is advocating — is pure warmongering and pure belligerence by the standards of international law, as well as any traditional standard of morality. The doctrine of preemptive war was raised as a defence by Nazis at the Nuremberg trials, and rejected out of hand.
It should only be expected that were a future administration to launch a belligerent war against any nation, that those lobbyists who lobbied for it and those policymakers who enacted it would at least be prepared to fight and die — and send their children to fight and die— on the front line. Anything less than that is pure and utter chickenhawkery.