03/28/2008 02:47 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Sorry, Guys. WWIII Gets Cancelled

Never have so many been so disappointed so much about the prospects of avoiding war. If only the mullahs really had some nukes. As the news from the National Intelligence Estimate debunking Iran's supposed nuclear build- seeps in, you can sense the palpable disappointment building -- faster. Just when the architects of victory in Iraq were drafting plans for an encore in Iran, just as all the excitement, the rush, the exaltation of sprinting right toward WWIII was heavy upon us, it goes and gets cancelled!

Tough luck, guys.

That includes, I think, most of the Republican presidential candidates and for sure the GOP congressional campaign strategists for whom -- it's been an open secret-- the run-up to a war with Iran was going to be a sort of October Surprise, the magic issue on which to try and ride out the 08 campaign.

Let's also include among the crestfallen the Democratic candidate Ms. Hillary Clinton who --in spite of her vast and vaunted years of experience and foreign policy acumen-- totally misjudged her play on Iran. A few months back, riding high in the polls and with her eyes already cast on the general election, Clinton hedged her bets on the right by shamelessly endorsing the Kyl-Lieberman resolution on Iran (which everybody knows was really the Cheney-Bush resolution). Absolutely convinced that the administration was pushing us toward a new war, Clinton clearly figured the best thing for her to do was to try and get out ahead of the curve and unfurl her hawkish wings.

Oops. She now faces the prospect of living out this month of the pre-Iowa campaign by having to repeatedly explain how it is she wound up outflanking the CIA on the right.

George W. Bush has also some explaining to do. After recently warning of the threat of global holocaust over Iran, who's going to believe that the Prez didn't know what his own intel guys had found out about Iran at the same time he was blustering? Either he knew and concealed the inconvenient truth. Or he wasn't interested enough in his own war plans to even find out. Which is worse?