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Friday, November 16, 2012

To War or Not To War, That is the Question: Calls to Declare War on Iran in SPECPOL

An unfriendly amendment proposed by the delegate of Israel on a resolution submitted by the delegates of Egypt and Pakistan, which sought to reconcile the Iranian nuclear situation through the continued implementation of sanctions, the promotion of transparency and trust between Iran and other nations, and international collaboration to ensure that Iran’s nuclear technology was developed strictly for civilian use, sparked intense debate in the SPECPOL Committee.

The delegate of Israel explained that the reasoning behind the amendment, which called for the addition of a clause that explicitly declared war on Iran, was that “…Iran was becoming more belligerent by the day…” and that the UN had already given diplomacy a chance – to no avail. Moreover, she proclaimed that “warfare is a serious threat to the stability in the Middle East,” and that if the committee allowed Iran to develop nuclear capabilities, they could pose a significant threat to the world.

A major opponent to this amendment was the delegate of the U.S.A., who started off his speech by repeatedly stating that “[this] amendment is not viable.” Pointing to the fact that the Iranian government’s treasury is depleting and that now is “not the time for [the UN] to wage war against Iran,” he suggested that the delegate of Israel withdraw his amendment. “We are not prepared for World War III; we have not reached our last resort yet” was the delegate’s ringing proclamation. In response, the delegate of Israel called upon the delegate of the U.S.A. to consider the current circumstances and stated that declaring war now is a better solution than waiting for nuclear warfare in the future. In turn, the latter stated that he supported the sanctions that were included in the original resolution and indicated that Iran is still far from nuclear capabilities. In the end, the amendment was defeated in a landslide.

Whether or not to take military action against a country that has been uncooperative to the protocols of the UN is always a dilemma, and while it is wonderful to see that the delegates are eagerly expressing their viewpoints, it is also great to see that SPECPOL decided to seek more peaceful means in resolving conflicts.
-Philip K. (12)

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