My friends: I believe that when we consider the many threats and crimes of Iran’s government, we are led to one inescapable conclusion: It is the character of this Iranian regime – not just its behavior – that is the deeper threat to peace and freedom in our world, and in Iran. Furthermore, I believe that it will only be a change in the Iranian regime itself – a peaceful change, chosen by and led by the people of Iran – that could finally produce the changes we seek in Iran’s policies.
Even now, though, we hear it said again that Iran’s democratic opposition has been beaten into submission. And I would not deny that a regime like this one, which knows no limits to its ruthlessness, will achieve many of its goals – for now. But when Iran’s rulers are too afraid of their own people to tolerate even routine public demonstrations on regime holidays, as they recently have been, that is not a government that is succeeding. It is the action of criminals who understand that their morally bankrupt regime is now on the wrong side of Iranian history.To reiterate, this would have been McCain's Cairo speech last year, and this year with a crumbling economy, the BP oil spill, unemployment near 10% (actually it would be higher as McCain would have vetoed the stimulus) and all our problems, the drumbeat for war would have been daily for the last six months easily. We would be at war with Iran by now. "Want a job, join the army!" would be his employment program. Three shooting wars.
That's what we avoided in November 2008.