What “Carrots” Have Been Offered to Iran?

Satterfield When I first read this article I was tempted to think that Robin Wright had gone over to "the dark side" as Vice President Cheney calls it.  A closer inspection reveals that she is actually compiling a list of the current "group think" among the Jacobins and their auxiliaries.

It is quite egregious for the Jacobins to argue that Iran has not responded to a diplomatic effort in which carrots and sticks have been offered.  What carrots?  Whenever Rice or Satterfield talk about diplomacy on Television we are treated to a vision of glowering bluster demanding Iranian compliance in Iraq.  Period!!! 

Our "negotiating" strategy toward Iran is nothing but a demand for their surrender.  Period!!  How Middle Eastern we have become in so short a time.

The AEI types that Wright mentions are consistent in the fullness of their fantasy life just as they were before Iraq.

This is log-rolling.  Don’t be rolled.  pl



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39 Responses to What “Carrots” Have Been Offered to Iran?

  1. Binh says:

    If the neocons are the Jacobins, who among them is The Incorruptible? Wolfowitz? Bush? Cheney?

  2. J says:

    what are we a nation to do, when a foreign govt. through their agent (aipac) has our congress by their gonads and threatens any congress person who gets out of line (veers off their aipac line) or decides to act on behalf of america instead of israel, the foreign govt. through their agent proceeds to casterate /neuter any member of congress who dares stand up to their aipac/foreign govt. lunacy?
    we are a nation being held hostage by foreign govt. store fronts called ‘think tanks’ – aei (aipac), literally.
    while the public may not be log rolled, what to do with a congress who willingly allows a foreign govt. to roll them literally?

  3. Montag says:

    Here are some illuminating quotations from our Presidents along those lines:
    “It is cheaper to feed the Indians than to fight them.”
    –William Henry Harrison
    “We can never be too tardy to begin the work of blood…But it is a bad mode of settling disputes to make soldiers your ambassadors, and to point to the halter and the gallows as your ultimatum.”
    –John Tyler, 1841
    “I am one of those who believe that a man may sin and do wrong, and after that may do right. If all of us who have sinned were put to death…there would not be many of us left.”
    –Andrew Johnson, 1866
    “We Americans have no commission from God to police the world.”
    –Benjamin Harrison
    “People want peace so much that governments had better get out of their way and let them have it.”–Dwight David Eisenhower, 1960

  4. kim says:

    too late. only way the people are going to hear you now is if/when you get on the presidential campaign trail.

  5. Sidney O. Smith III says:

    Haaretz reports the following exchange b/t a reporter and David Welch — Ass’t Sec. of State:
    Q: Roula Ayoubi, BBC Arabic. The Iranian President said in Syria, like a month ago, that it will be a very hot summer?
    A/S Welch: Well, he is the source of the heat so ? absolutely. You know, there is the cook turning up the gas.
    Q: Will you send them some air conditioning?
    A/S Welch: We intend to blow out the flame.

  6. VietnamVet says:

    Besides Iraq and Afghanistan where actual hot wars are underway; other battles are currently underway that will determine the length of the Middle East occupation and rapprochement with Iran.
    First, is the battle of Reality against Corporate Media and Washington Insiders. Corporate Leaders and the Pundits joined the True Believers in their crusade against Islam after being scared witless by 9/11. But now, they are loath to admit that the Executive Branch is delusional. More importantly, they can’t acknowledge that with privatization, deregulation and tax cuts American infrastructure is collapsing into the Mississippi River from New Orleans to Minneapolis, or that the financial markets are in extreme boom burst cycles from the excesses of Paul Allen’s Submarine Yacht to collapsing security markets.
    A pull back is inevitable but this time the blame cannot be placed on hippies or the media. Like Vietnam, the US is fighting a war of occupation that it cannot win with inadequate number of troops and political goals that are counter the aspirations of the occupied country. The only question is the length of the occupation and outcome of the battles occurring in the USA.

  7. Jack Kemp says:

    Attempts at diplomacy with Iran always seem to be timed with aerial assaults and accusations of armor penetrating IEDs supplied directly from Iran. An opposing conjecture is that such enhanced IEDs can be assembled in Iraq, using oil industry machinery already present in Iraq. What’s the real story?

  8. Jim Schmidt says:

    Fantasy is right. I just don’t understand the threat.
    The Norman Podhoretz comment equating Hitler to Ahmadinejad is just plain silly. Iran’s president is more a ceremonial frontman for the religious political forces and far less a solitary figure of absolute, dictatorial power. Munich has lessons, but none apply here.
    Iran is rationing gasoline and — according to some recent reports — facing a decline in their oil reserves and the ability to extract and export oil, due to aging infrastructure. As a result, Iran, economically, is in decline. Wars cost money. Do they plan to borrow from the Chinese to make mischief? Who gets the “profit”?
    As for Iran’s military capability, I remember seeing a news report of an Iranian military exercise conducted several months ago where some hapless character was bouncing around on the back of a moving motorcycle attempting to aim and fire an RPG. A guy hanging on the back of a “Honda 50” makes for a good circus act but hardly constitutes regional threat.
    Nukes? Iran says they aren’t planning to build one. No need to trust them, but what proof do we have that they are? Another “slam dunk?
    Besides, enriching uranium is one thing, but building, testing, weaponizing, transporting and reliably detonating a bomb over a target is a much larger problem. Hard to hide.
    As for interferance in Iraq, where’s the beef? A recent report in the WaPO and other studies show that many of the suicide bombers are Saudi, not Iranian. No serious person is promoting attacking our dear friends the Saudis, so why Iran?
    Somebody(s) have an itch they just can’t scratch, but to attack another state, again without cause, with all the unintended consequence, is truly fantastical. I don’t have idea what Iran’s “game” is in the region, but we are the 800 pound gorilla. Cue Major T. J. “King” Kong.
    Question is, will the drugs kick in in time and return our delusional elite back to the world of reality, before they launch another foolish adventure?

  9. Mad Dogs says:

    These are the very same folks who have been consistently wrong about Iraq policy and again take center stage courtesy of the ever supplicant MSM as ususal, to be consistenly wrong about Iran policy.
    I guess this must come to pass as our glorious new National Security Policy on Iran as evidenced by the shared mutterings and incantations of Kristol and Podhertz then showing up coming out of the mouths of Deadeye and Junya.
    Silly me! Who but a fool would listen to another fool.

  10. johnf says:

    >the financial markets are in extreme boom burst cycles from the excesses of Paul Allen’s Submarine Yacht to collapsing security markets.
    As a matter of interest, how long will the US/UK manage to sustain their lunatic delusions in the Middle East if there is a financial collapse?

  11. geos says:

    for some reason this line in the article stands out for me:
    …ousting the government by missile strikes and special forces operations…
    I’m trying to imagine the conversation where someone said this, was there laughter because it was such a foolish idea that you couldn’t imagine hearing such a serious person say it, or did you, hearing this, just nod sagely.

  12. JohnH says:

    The underlying script–
    US: Give us your oil and natural gas.
    Carrot: an all-expense-paid retirement package.
    Stick: We’ll bomb you into the stone age (except for your energy assets).
    Now who wouldn’t respond to such persuasive carrots and sticks?
    Answer: leaders who don’t want to be remembered for eternity for having surrendered their nation’s wealth.

  13. Babak Makkinejad says:

    Jim Schmidt:
    I think that the “delusional elite” has bigger fish to fry than just Iran. To wit: notice the post Cold War attempt at reducing Russian influence in Eastern Europe and Central Asia, the strengthening of Taiwan, increasing the Japanese military spending, the attempt at strategic engagement with India etc.
    I think also that these “delusional elites” are unwilling or unable to pay the price of their policy perscriptions – in blood or in treasure. So they fall back on promises that cannot be kept – Libya did not get what she expected, ditto for Russia under Yelstin, and likewise now for India.

  14. wasabi says:

    Yesterday’s NYTimes had an article again blaming the Iranians for importing armor penetrating IEDs. However, the AP reported in early April that the American forces had found a factory in Diwaniya that made the EFP’s. http://www.boston.com/news/world/middleeast/articles/2007/04/06/iraqi_us_forces_sweep_through_iraqi_city/
    Before the war the Iraqis were so technologically advanced that they could send drones over our airspace to poison us all, and now they are just too incompetent to be able to make a bomb that has been in existance for several years.
    Listening to Lou Dobbs last night was a treat. He basically called President Bush a wuss if he doesn’t take action directly to stop this nonsense.
    Is this all bluster or are they just crazy enough to do something?

  15. Montag says:

    There’s a marvelous take on this Know-Nothing intransigent mentality by John Baxter in his book, “Science Fiction In The Cinema,” where he dissects the 1951 fright movie, “The Thing From Another World”. Most of you no doubt remember it–a flying saucer crashes near an Arctic base and the alien goes on a rampage until killed by pluck and luck. Because it was produced (and probably directed) by Howard Hawks, it’s a real man’s picture. Baxter tears it to shreds with great relish:
    “Typically for Hawks the characters quickly separate themselves into professionals and dreamers. The airman, the reporter he takes with him and some of his crew are professionals; the scientists, and especially their leader, are dreamers. Hawks’s contempt for the former comes out clearly in the various exchanges at the base, science and scientists generally shown as being incapable of adjusting to the real world. The fact that [the airman, actor Kenneth] Tobey is almost always wrong in his decisions does not prevent him from emerging as the most favourable character. Even a wrong tough guy is better than no tough guy at all…”
    That last sentence would make a pretty good epitaph for Dick Cheney’s tombstone–if he doesn’t shoot Death in a “hunting accident.”

  16. walrus says:

    I think only now, Americans are starting to realise what is in store for them until they “straighten up and fly right”, but it is still only a very dim perception.
    My perceptions are from about six thousand miles away, so I see things as a totality – the wider view, untroubled by stories of bridge collapses and coal mine cave ins.
    On the economic front, you cannot preach “globalisation” and “free trade” while at the same time enforcing conservative prudential controls on your own financial markets, pursuing conservative and responsible Government budgetting and domestic economic policies and putting your money where your mouth is on “Free Trade”. Bush’s scorecard on all these matters is precisely zero, as the American economy is, sadly, about to demonstrate.
    On the domestic front, the regressive policies on education, Health care, Law enforcement and Justice are going to exacerbate the damage caused by the fallout from the coming economic meltdown. For example – America’s new bankruptcy laws are going to create a new class of indentured serfs unless they are altered.
    On the political front, Congress is neutered because they serve the needs of their sponsors, not the electorate, and the sponsors have very different needs from the average American, to wit, the sponsors require perpetual war, access to energy supplies and the suppression of Islamic states.
    On the military front, Iraq is effectively “unwinnable” in the conventional understanding of the Iraqis throwing rose petals as we leave and thanking us for coming.
    The endgame is just starting. The economy is going to go into recession, perhaps followed by depression. No plans have been made to deal with the millions of homeless and jobless, except for the creation of a savage justice system to repress them further.
    If we attack Iran, my guess is that oil prices will give the coup de grace to the American economy, and I also believe we risk losing all our troops and materiel in Iraq. We have about 300,000 there. Iraq is 26 million people, Iran is bigger. If they arc up and our (fragile) force protection defences crack, we could lose the lot.
    The most telling news item I’ve seen today is a report (as yet unconfirmed) that the Head of Bear Sterns is planning to go cap in hand to CHINA to ask for investment in his firm.
    Question: What do you think the Chinese will say?
    What do you think think they will ask for as a condition of investment?

  17. taters says:

    Chest thumping is the carrot – we know what the stick is.
    We should be seeing pictures of those that are beating the drums of war in Iran at our local post office identifying them with the other undesirables.
    Nothing like playing checkers when the game is chess.
    With apologies to JohnM – I didn’t see your analogy

  18. GSD says:

    I am sure that Bill Kristol and Fred Kagan and Bonzo Bolton are whipsering sweet nothings into Cheney’s ear.
    “The Iranians are weak, ready to collapse, one major strike and the Shah’s old guard will rise up and take Iran back to the glory days of the 60’s. We have inside information, a well placed dissident named Highball.”

  19. Steve says:

    President seems upset at the possible words of Mr. Maliki to Iran. President Bush speaking at a press conference today before his long deserved vaction said…
    “Now, if the signal is that Iran is constructive, I will have to have a heart to heart with my friend, the prime minister,” Mr. Bush said of Mr. Maliki. “Because I don’t believe they are constructive. I don’t think he, in his heart of heart, think they’re constructive either.”
    Colonel, will the President school Mr. Maliki on how he should feel in his heart of hearts regarding a member of the “Axis of Evil,” and perhaps have films of Diem sent to Iraq? I’m interested in everything you have to say about the Iran/Iraq angle.
    IMHO opinion, President Bush’s foreign policy is bankrupt. He is running out of time, and Iran is just getting up to speed.

  20. DanaJ says:

    Jack Kemp said: “An opposing conjecture is that such enhanced IEDs can be assembled in Iraq, using oil industry machinery already present in Iraq. What’s the real story?”
    Give me an old lathe, 5 lbs of copper, an old oxygen tank and I could make you an IED in about an hour that would take a hummer. Hell , I bet they don’t even need the lathe, a hacksaw & ball peen hammer would do. The Iraqis have thousands of artillery shells that we LET them pillage from the old army bases just after the “liberation”. So, yeah, the IED’s are all home made, they don’t have to import them from Iran. That whole story is BS from the get go. What would be the point from the Iranian side anyway? As for buying the raw materials, didn’t you read about the theft from a bank in Baghdad a few weeks ago of over $200 MILLION? That will go a long way to funding the resistance, or insurgency if that is what you want to call it.

  21. Homer says:

    Back in May 2007, Wright was obviously assigned to re-kindle the anti-Iranian sentiment felt by some Americans in the 1980s when men from Hizbollah took hostages and then made demands in order to secure the release of the Kuwait 17 who had suicide bombed the US and the French Embassies. (NB: 12 were Iraqis in the al-Dawa party of Al-Maliki)
    In at least two articles (below), Wright exploited the horrible and unfortunate capturing and imprisoning of Dr Esfandiari by labelling her as a “hostage”.
    The problem with Wright’s use of “hostage” is that the Iranian government has never made any demands to secure Dr Esfandiari’s release.
    Without making any demands, Dr Esfandiari is NOT a hostage.
    Can it be that Wright does not know what a hostage is?
    Did she not know that her article would make things far worse for Dr Esfandiari ?
    Did she even ask Dr Esfandiari’s family if they would mind if she could be the pitiful goat to slaughtered for the sake of the Neocons?
    NB: In the second article below “Hostage” is emblazoned in the headline BUT then never again taken up.
    “A New Iranian Hostage Crisis” is just enough to plant the seed of anti-Iranian sentiment in a busy American’s mind.
    Shame on Wright!!
    Tehran Jails Iranian American Scholar After Long House Arrest, May 9, 2007, WaPo
    Esfandiari is one of three “soft hostages,” all dual U.S.-Iranian nationals, whose passports have been confiscated by the Iranian government, rendering them unable to leave the country.
    A New Iranian Hostage Crisis Tehran Calls Scholar Esfandiari a ‘Velvet’ Revolutionary, May 23, 2007, WaPo
    Esfandiari is a most unlikely hostage.
    [Keywords: Robin Wright, Fanny Esfandiari, Iranian hostage Crisis, Khomeini, Kuwait 17, 1983 bombings of the American and French embassies, Dawa prisoners, Poindexter, Charles Dunbar, Ed Meese, Oliver North, Ronald Reagan, arms-for-hostages dealings, Hezbollah in Lebanon]

  22. jonst says:

    Anybody concerned (I mean even more than normal)by Bush’s manner and syntax yesterday? Depressed and bizarre to me. Anyway, i’m thinking the fix is in…Iran is going to be hit. Its inevitable. I believe, sadly, that zbig Brzezinski will be proven correct. He is going to use failure to achieve ‘success’ in Iraq as a reason to attack Iran. On that note PL I heard an interview on Ian Master’s show. It was a reporter that has been in Iraq for two years or so. Named David Enders. Anyway, in the course of the interview he stated that ‘all most all’ of the supplies for the our forces in Iraq we’re being flown in. Do you buy that? I don’t.
    He is completely wrong. pl

  23. Homer says:

    pl: Don’t be rolled.
    Speaking of rolling, Al-Maliki Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, and Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei were just rolling up and enjoying a fatty in Iran.
    Bush says he might have to have a “heart-to-heart” talk with al-Maliki whose organization, viz. al-Dawa (founded in 1957/58), has had a brotherly relationship with Iran for well over two decades.
    One word comes to mind: Expulsion!!!
    Bush thinks al-Maliki is going stab Iranians in the back so that they can kiss each other on the cheek and walk hand in hand around Bush’s (fake, made for TV) ranch in Crawford?

  24. ked says:

    Yes, jonst, I too noted Bush’s demeanor in the press conference and was taken aback. It cannot be explained by Lyme’s Disease alone. He was semi-coherent at best, only focusing when he could work up a major harangue or engage in insipid jockularity with the sycophants among the WH press corps. His statement on the economy at Treasury the previous day was similar, but without the laughs.
    My read is that this man is under unrelenting & overpowering pressure, is very unhappy, doesn’t enjoy any part of his job and is mad at the world. I hope & pray he isn’t so mad that he desires more war.
    Completely seperate from politics & policy, I wouldn’t want to work for him, or even be around him. I wouldn’t want him directing the fate of my loved ones. I wouldn’t trust him with the fate of a great nation. We are experiencing extraordinary risk.

  25. Montag says:

    Bush has been psychoanalyzed as being the typical “dry drunk.” Although he’s stopped drinking he’s never addressed the root cause of the drinking–insecurity, etc. by actually going through a professional program. One indicator of this is his habit of giving subordinates nicknames, to demonstrate that he’s the Alpha male. Another was that ridiculous Commander-in-Chief uniform that he was stupid enough to wear for a time.
    There’s a periodic web report called, “Inside The White House,” by an anonymous informant pretending at least to be on the inside. I read it purely for entertainment, certainly not for its informational value. But the “informant” has come up with his own nickname for the Bush White House–“the Monkey Palace.” This brings to mind the Sultans or whatnot who would build small palaces as menageries for their colony of monkeys, in which the monkeys could caper to their heart’s content–without in any way affecting government policy.

  26. For a broader perspective, consider Renaissance Diplomacy by Garrett Mattingly
    In this book, Mattingly traces the emergence of the modern diplomatic corps.
    According to Mattingly, this emergence was part of the broader institutional, political, and intellectual trends of the Renaissance that then were forging the emergence of the nation-state.
    Diplomacy itself, has been part of that milieu.
    That diplomacy itself today no longer is functioning might suggest that this underlying milieu has become or is becoming obsolete.
    And there are reasons related to globalization to consider this suggestion. As anyone contemplating the recent activity of the stock market should note, the ability of the Fed and other national institutions to respond to this challenge ain’t what it used to be. Transnational organizations are sprouting. Non-western cultures are asserting themselves.
    Accordingly, perhaps the proper question should not be how the United States should negotiate with Iran but – more broadly – how normal, civil relationships might be achieved and maintained in this transnational, post-modern world.

  27. martin k says:

    My favourite comment from the president was: “Iran must prove that it is a stablilizing factor”. Pretty rich from a man who has invaded two of the neighbouring countries and are openly speaking of bombing both Pakistan and Iran itself.

  28. Homer says:

    RE: Bush’s explanation of the cheer and warmth conveyed by photos of PM al-Maliki during his visit with Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad (August 9, 2007)
    Q [snip] Reports out of Iran today, out of Iran, say that Prime Minister Maliki told President Ahmadinejad that he appreciated Iran’s positive and constructive stance. The pictures from the visit are very warm. I’m wondering, do you and your Iraqi counterparts see eye-to-eye on Iran, and what kind of message do those images send to your allies in the region and Americans who are skeptical about the Prime Minister’s role?
    THE PRESIDENT: Jim, I haven’t seen the reports. Before I would like to comment upon how their meetings went, I would like to get a readout from our embassy, who of course will be in touch with the Prime Minister, and get his readout. And so it’s a — you’re asking me to be a little speculative on the subject. I haven’t seen the picture.
    Look, generally the way these things work is you try to be cordial to the person you’re with, and so you don’t want the picture to be kind of, you know, ducking it out. Okay, put up your dukes. That’s an old boxing expression. (Laughter.)

  29. CSTAR says:

    This quote from Podhoretz defies categorization:
    Like Hitler, [Ahmadinejad] is a revolutionary whose objective is to overturn the going international system and to replace it in the fullness of time with a new order dominated by Iran.
    “new order dominated by Iran?” Is Podhoretz serious? I mean to go from having nukes to dominating the world order is quite a leap. Umm what happened to China, in that new order, not to mention a few others?

  30. Clifford Kiracofe says:

    Per psychological profile of the Decider, the book by Justin Frank, Bush on the Couch presents a useful clinical study. Justin teaches at George Washington University in DC where he also has his practice. New edition coming out this fall with new Introduction and updated analysis.
    Justin uses the techniques developed for profiling foreign heads of state. I spoke with Justin briefly this week in DC and he indicated a marked decline in the Decider. When I asked what this would imply for foreign policy between now and January 09, he said that it could well point to lashing out at Iran militarily.
    Duncan Kinder,
    Agree with your Mattingly reference and I use chapters of the book teaching a class in international relations theory at Washington and Lee University. The main text used is Adam Watson, The Evolution of International Society (London: Routledge). Ambassador Watson is a retired British Ambassador who served as Assistant Under-Secretary of State and as chairman of the British Committee for the Theory of International Politics (the group over the years included Herbert Butterfield, Hedley Bull, and other Foreign Office, Military, etc. officials). Ambassador Watson has just published a new book (at age 96 I think it is) relating to the theme of “hegemony.”
    The “British School” of international relations theory is the only serious one I am aware of. There is the so-called “Realist School” of Morgenthau-Leo Strauss etal. with its alien Nietzschean/Carl Schmittian thing divorced from any authentic American tradition represented by George Kennan, for example. This Nietzschean-Hobbesian-Schmittian sewage was dumped on Americans in the Post-WWII era and is rather dominant today in academe. “Realists,” “Neorealists” and all that. Trappings include “quantitative” “models” (abstract fetishistic fantasies) and “game theory” blather…
    The British School, which arose in the 1950s and focuses on history and culture as a point of departure, is not dissimilar to American academic work in the post Versailles period of the 1920s and 1930s. For example, Frank M. Russell, Theories of International Relations (New York: Appleton, 1936). Russell taught at the University of California-Berkeley.

  31. Clifford Kiracofe
    For another perspective on the milieu out of which diplomacy arose in the Renaissance, read Medici Money: Banking, Metaphysics, and Art in Fifteenth Century Florence. As Mattingly notes, one of the precedents for having permanent resident ambassadors at foreign capitols was the prior Italian banking practice of having corespondent banks abroad.
    Essential to maintaining an embassy was keeping one’s correspondence with it secret. This required encryption, which, during the Renaissance, was stimulated by interaction with Caballistic and Islamic hermeneutics. The Codebreakers: The Comprehensive History of Secret Communication from Ancient Times to the Internet by David Kahn discusses how Renaissance cryptography evolved out of these.

  32. Montag says:

    Clifford Kiracofe,
    Oh, absolutely, the fantasy of being able to cut the Gordian Knot with one bold move is no doubt very attractive to Bush at this point–like the Romans during the Second Punic War who became impatient with the low-risk Fabian tactics of their army and insisted on one big battle at Cannae. After all, an army that large MUST defeat Hannibal, mustn’t it? All they got was a reminder of why they were using Fabian tactics in the first place.

  33. Homer says:

    RE: PM al-Maliki’s reaction to
    President Bush’s dictation by way of IraqSlogger:
    According to Pan-Arab al-Quds al-‘Arabi, an official in the Council of Ministers said that Maliki was “extremely annoyed” by Bush’s scolding, the unnamed official added that “the White House (seems to be telling Tehran): we are the ones who decide the extent of relations between Baghdad and Tehran.”

  34. Matthew says:

    Clifford & Montag: Bush believes that what “he knows” and “what is/are” are identical concepts. Stated another way, he has a metaphor, which cannot be impeached by facts. Didn’t the Commies teach us that you can grow wheat in permafrost because the Party willed it….?

  35. Curious says:

    Another step closer to middle east regional war. Anybody remember why ? (make note, because 4 yrs from now, it’ll be even more confusing.)
    U.S. to designate Iranian Revolutionary Guards corps a terrorist organization:
    … For weeks, the Bush administration has been debating whether to target the Revolutionary Guard Corps in full, or only its Quds Force wing, which U.S. officials have linked to the growing flow of explosives, roadside bombs, rockets and other arms to Shiite militias in Iraq and the Taliban in Afghanistan. The Quds Force also lends support to Shiite allies such as Lebanon’s Hezbollah and to Sunni movements such as Hamas and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad.
    Anybody care to guess the windows of opportunity to attack Iran?
    Fall would be obvious first window of opportunity. But that would be very close to Iraq “progress report”. But I suspect within the report there will be some wording about Iran is involved inside Iraq.
    See how Israel is positioning their asset.
    After that it’s christmas. Hardly good time to start a war. After that presidential election is running full speed. Starting another war is guarantee political implosion for decades to come.
    So, the next 5 months would be very interesting. All major powers will make their maneuvers for sure. China and Russia have the biggest stake on this.

  36. Homer says:

    Curious: U.S. officials have linked (Robin Wright, WaPo)
    Notice how Wright can/does not name the US officials and can/does not adduce or scrutinize any evidence ?
    Notice how Wright can/does not mention the hard and indisputable fact that over twenty years ago Iran fathered SCIRI’s military arm (the Badr Corps) and has been funding it ever since?
    Wright is to Iran what Judith Miller is to Iraq.

  37. dan says:

    Considering that the US government is on the verge of running out of cash …..again… and that the begging letters to Congress to raise the debt ceiling have already been sent, it’s a banker certainty that nothing will happen until after the November treasuries auctions, and the end of the hurricane season; I doubt that starting another war, with its attendant oil price spike, will deliver much cheer in the run-up to Xmas, especially if winter fuel costs rise dramatically.
    There’s a fun game that Congress can play here with Bush – by authorising regular, small increases in the debt ceiling ( $150-200 billion every 3-4 months ) they can keep him on a very tight leash if they’re smart enough to go down this route.
    The Bush administration has vitually no wiggle-room left for pursuing military “solutions” – they all come with spectacularly high economic and political ( and possibly legal ) costs nowadays.

  38. Curious says:

    I think Congress is fairly weak and divided. If Bush pulls the trigger, for eg. launching a bombing run. And he can expect Iran to retaliate fully.
    By then it really doesn’t matter what congress wants. Or if there is budget or not. They have to pay Bush Iranian war. (Same strategy as Iraq war. It’s easy to start a war, but nobody knows how to stop it.)
    The next few weeks will be interesting to watch, cause obviously Iran/Syria, Israel, Russia, China all have to start calculating their position against Bush move.
    I wonder what Saudi is thinking right now.
    I guess now it’s only trying to predict what Iranian military moves will be in the event of US-Iranian war this fall.

  39. Curious says:

    This mess has Condi’s signature all over it. Completely illogical and schizophrenic. Wait until this mess feeds into the global market turmoil currently is brewing. (energy and dollar price.)
    This is amazing, the kinda of material future generation will scratch their head on.
    The real impact of the designation is likely to be political. On the one hand, the move risks undermining the newly initiated talks in Baghdad between US and Iranian officials in regards to the security situation in Iraq. While this step has been hailed as unprecedented, the talks are yet to produce a real breakthrough – except, that is, for the fact that the two countries actually talked to each other in the open for the first time in 28 years.
    It is unclear how Washington expects success in those talks if it at the same time designates the very same people it seeks help from as global terrorists.
    Ironically, some of the Iranian diplomats the US is dealing with in Iraq are still part of the IRGC, including Mohammad Jafari, who sat across the table from US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice at the Iraq summit in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt, this year.

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