Behold the mind-boggling irrationality of those directing American foreign policy.

Today on Fox News Sunday, host Chris Wallace asked a guest, “As you leave office, how much of a disappointment is it to you that Iran still [has] an active nuclear weapons program?” The guest replied,

Well, I think it’s an ongoing problem for the world, not just for the United States. I think that Iran with a nuclear weapon is extremely destabilizing. I think it could precipitate a nuclear arms race in the region. I think we haven’t thought through all of the consequences—or we haven’t talked enough about the consequences of Iran acquiring nuclear weapons.

The guest who made this statement was U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert Gates.

If our defense leaders, presumably President Obama included, “haven’t thought through all of the consequences … of Iran acquiring nuclear weapons,” what possibly could they be doing that is more important? Though Russia and China are the most powerful potential foreign threats to America, Iran is currently America’s main enemy in the world. Iran is committed to destroying the United States and has already murdered countless Americans in Iraq, Afghanistan, Lebanon (through Hezbollah), and elsewhere.

On the other hand, if Gates and his associates—including our President—do not already know “the consequences of Iran acquiring nuclear weapons,” they could think about such consequences non-stop for the rest of their lives and still not know. The consequences are obvious to any rational individual. If Iran acquires deliverable nuclear weapons one day, Iran will use those weapons against Israel and/or the United States by the next day. Iran considers mass murder a great victory, no matter what happens to Iranians.

Gates ended his answer to Chris Wallace with this statement:

But my hope is that we can find a peaceful way to persuade these guys this is in their interest.

When do mass murderers respond reasonably to peaceful persuasion? When do mass murderers act in their rational interest? In particular, when have the leaders of Iran ever acted in a manner that Gates would regard as “in their interest”?

On September 16, 2007, when he was Defense Secretary in the Bush Administration, Gates appeared on Fox News Sunday and said this:

I will tell you that I think that the administration believes at this point that continuing to try and deal with the Iranian threat, the Iranian challenge, through diplomatic and economic means is by far the preferable approach. That’s the one we are using.

Since then, many more American soldiers have been killed in Iraq and Afghanistan through Iranian support.

This havoc has been caused with weapons such as “Iranian-produced advanced rockets, sniper rifles, automatic weapons, and mortars.” Imagine what havoc Iran would cause with nuclear weapons. But such consequences have not been “thought through” by America’s leaders.