Who is correct on Iran?

4af4bd48b7484758 "U.S. and European counterproliferation experts believe that Iran's centrifuge program has already produced enough low-enriched uranium, an essential precursor to the production of bomb-grade material, to provide feedstock to produce enough highly enriched uranium to make a bomb. However, that is an arduous and technically complicated process. Many U.S. and European experts say that Iran is still experiencing technical problems with centrifuges it would use to produce bomb-grade uranium, which could delay any Iranian bomb program for years.

An Obama administration official says that top policymakers are being told that there is no significant disagreement among U.S. intelligence agencies and experts about the latest assessments regarding Iran's nuclear effort. That may encourage the White House's efforts to continue to try to engage Iran in diplomatic dialogue, including discussion of Iran's nuclear ambitions."  Newsweek


Dan Rather, the prize asset of HDtv, was on the Joe and Mika show today pushing his new "special" on the subject of Iran.  When asked the right programmed question, Rather solemnly pronounced that he has reached the conclusion that Iran is proceeding methodically toward deliverable nuclear weapons and opined that they could assemble a weapon "any time."  He said that he had been talking to "some people" who had convinced him that this is the truth.

Is it?

Who are these people to whom he spoke?  Did the owner of HDtv get him this access to these sources of information?  Are they American?  What does David Albright have to say about this?  What does Kyran Mish have to say about it?

It should be no secret now that a massive political warfare campaign is underway that is intended to push the United States into war with Iran. 

The truth matters, not the truthiness of Rather's production concerning Iran's capabilities and intentions, but the actual truth.  pl


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54 Responses to Who is correct on Iran?

  1. Bill Wade, NH says:

    The CIA declared in 2003 that Iran had abandoned their nuclear weapons program and we haven’t heard a thing from them since, perhaps it’s time for the CIA to pipe up again.

  2. J says:

    Israeli government supplying ‘kooked’ intel in the Iraq WMD fiasco intentionally pushing the U.S. into an unnecessary Iraq war,showed themselves to be no friend or ally. Once again Israel is doing the same regarding Iran. Israel is intentionally lying regarding Iran. Israel being fearful or not regarding Iraq and/or Iran is an Israeli affair and should never/have never involved our U.S..
    Once again Israel is showing they don’t care how many American military and intelligence personnel die/are sacrificed on the altar of Israeli security, just as long as their selfish self-centered Israeli objectives are achieved.
    It’s time to pull the plug on the annual $15-20 Billion U.S. economic/trade/military aid to Israel.
    Iran is no threat to our U.S., and that should be the base line — how does it affect the U.S., not how does it affect a foreign power!

  3. Cieran says:

    I’ll take the bait, Colonel!
    What I have to say about it is this: every technological task looks really easy to those who don’t have to sweat the engineering details. And Dan Rather has no idea how complicated this can get. So until Mr. Rather earns a Ph.D. in physics, he should just STFU.
    What science has to say includes these:
    –enriching LEU to HEU is a lot harder than it looks. The metallurgy alone is intractable, as radioactivity is one of the best ways to degrade metals, and HEU is mighty radioactive!
    –once you have enough HEU, you still have to fabricate a weapon you trust will work (it’s poor form to fire away at your enemies and then discover that your bullets are all duds). That means you gotta worry about testing the device.
    –an assembly weapon can be fabricated from HEU and potentially deployed without testing, but good luck carrying it on a missile.
    — an implosion weapon could be engineered to fit on a missile, but would need testing before deployment (e.g., the U.S. tested the Fat Man design in the Trinity test a few weeks before Nagasaki). Failing to test this kind of design is incredibly risky, especially when various neighboring nations have plenty of their own nuclear weapons.
    What I find most ironic about this war drumbeat is that the #1 sanction proposed for use against Iran is to embargo gasoline supplies imported by Iran. Since refining gasoline is an infinitely simpler engineering process than “refining” HEU, why do we believe that an oil-rich country that can’t make enough gasoline for its own citizens is about to assemble an arsenal of nuclear weapons?
    Is there uncertainty involved here? Surely there is. But unless we are to believe that one of the world’s oldest civilizations has suddenly developed a collective death wish, it’s hard to imagine that Iranian nuclear programs are oriented towards anything more than the obvious, i.e., a near-term form of electricity, and a long-term deterrent capability.

  4. “It should be no secret now that a massive political warfare campaign is underway that is intended to push the United States into war with Iran. The truth matters…”
    Indeed. The truth is that the Israel Lobby influences at least 75% of the votes in Congress, constantly pressures the White House, and penetrates the executive branch and its departments.
    Given ownership patterns, the US media print and electronic is Israeli friendly to say the least. Gentile journalists make adjustments on “taboo” topics so as to maintain their careers by being Israel friendly.
    Are we looking at a replay of Suez 1956?
    1.) Iranian leaders as the “Hitler” figure…just as Nasser was the Hitler figure for the European propaganda (British and French specifically) per Suez.
    2.) Europeans raising the Iran WMD thing. We can recall the British “dodgy dossier” per Iraq which was closely coordinated with Israeli entitites. Nasser as a threat to the “West” etc…(or was that just French and British colonialism.) Presumably the Europeans are coordinating with the Israelis on these “intelligence”/black propaganda ops against Iran. Given the US media such black ops are a “cakewalk” as the Rather thing indicates.
    3.) Use of Israel to strike first against Nasser allowing the British and French to come in under Israeli political cover. The “Hitler” stuff to create sympathy for Israel and thus public support for the Suez attack in Britain and France.
    Let’s say that the US intelligence community assesses that US involvement in an attack on Iran would be counterproductive over the near and long term.
    But let’s say that there are those in the world who wish to entrap the US and weaken it so as to improve their own relative power position(s).
    Thus, one might argue that Europe (UK, France, and those whining about Iran) would like to see the US dragged into still another conflict in the Middle East. Teaming up with the Israelis, the Europeans (British, French, etal.) do a Suez with a twist. Israel does the first strike or something to trigger the conflict, then the US (NOT the clever Europeans) comes in to defend Israel and to continue the attack on Iran. The Russians gloat, the Chinese get nervous about their dollar-denominated holdings but take a pass, the Japanese take a pass.
    Are there not some rather significant counterintelligence issues here? And I do not mean just with respect to Israeli influence in the US as we saw with the AIPAC case/Franklin etc.
    For example, what is the real story with Jane Marriott — Holbrookes little helper — who David Habakkuk has just identified for us as a participant in the British “dodgy dossier” (falsified WMD scare stuff) matter which supported Blair’s desire (thus British policy) for war in Iraq.
    How about other similar penetrations of the current Administration? Are those foreign COIN specialists –like the one from Australia — who are advising the US in effect agents provocateurs?
    If the Europeans would like to go to war with Iran they should simply join in the Israeli attack and suffer the consequences. Meanwhile, we can as did the Eisenhower Administration express outrage and so on.
    For Suez 1956, one might consult: Keith Kyle, Suez. Britain’s End of Empire in the Middle East (London: IB Tauris, 2003).

  5. Thomas says:

    Will turcopolier push aside his misgivings of the MSM and take them on?

  6. confusedponderer says:

    Rather’s statement is in contradiction to the U.S. intelligence community reporting to the White House that Iran has not restarted its nuclear-weapons development program. [Link]

  7. N. M. Salamon says:

    An interesting take on this issue:
    IMO that there will be no war,
    1.,as the consequences are too dire in case of the unforseen
    2., China, a VETO holder, depends on Iranian oil to about 2 m barrels/day.
    3., Russia does not want a war on her borders [also a Veto holder].
    4., Possible dissolvance of NATO if any more soldiers are demanded for a 3rd war of choice [or is it 4th after Somalia?].
    5., Any major economic upheaval from such a war would put paid to USA economy, whose dependence on foreign oil has no end.
    4., All the major creditors of USA, China, Japan, S. Korea, Taiwan, EU nations need uninterrupted oil supply. While Aipec might not worry about such matters [being essentially a foreign agent], it should be presumed that there are adults in other offices of USA, President, Sec Def, and a few others.
    Gl with the negotiations!

  8. turcopolier says:

    That is correct. Pl

  9. Brett J says:

    News-reporting, or News-making, Dan? I suppose wars look better on HDtv than standard definition.

  10. Another way to look at this matter would be to consider the mindset of the war party. This is taking into consideration that the US war party is composed for foreign elements as well as US elements. The US elements are led by the plutocracy.
    For the sake of argument, we could say there are two basic elements: 1) designing men and women and 2) stupid and interested endorsers.
    In the designing men and women camp we might further break down the list into: 1) those who are in effect foreign agents of influence and 2) interested endorsers.
    In the first group of designing men and women we would find the “pro Israel” types liked closely to Israel itself. But we would also find some who would be linked to other foreign countries and transnational interests.
    In the second group of designing men and women we would find those simply interested in careers and financial benefit.
    The problem for the war party is a rather simple one:
    How do you move the US into a war with Iran and/or more military activity in Af-Paky if there are still patriotic souls in US institutions such as the intelligence community, law enforcement community, and so on.
    Congress is already bought so it is not a problem. The generals aren’t really a problem any more as there are no more Marshalls and many of the retired ones are raking it in via their association with the multibillion dollar war contracting industry. Upcoming officers note this and are looking for the gravy train after they put in their 20. One can argue the present US military is corrupt down to the captain level….careerism and etc. Why is COIN so popular? It’s the ticket to the gravy train.
    It is the residual patriotic elements in our federal (and state and local) institutions — particularly intelligence and law enforcement — who pose a problem for the war party.
    These patriotic elements would advise against more foreign war we can posit. Law enforcement would emphasize domestic threats from organized crime, terrorists, foreign gangs etc. Counterintelligence pressure could result in arrests and trials of foreign agents of influence as well as spies who are in the war party or who are fellow travellers.
    So the war party has to deal with the problem of the institutions and residual patriotic elements in them. One way is the Chas. Freeman treatment to send a message to everyone. We saw how the Bush-Cheney Administration stuffed the institutions with Neocons and etc. Now they are being stuffed with the Liberal Imperialist crowd whom the Neocons support anyways.
    But to undermine still further any institutional resistance to the war party, the massive information/black ops campaign through the pro-Israel US media provides a good “active measure.”
    So the Dan Rather project can be seen in this context. I wonder how much he is being paid for the program…more than 30 pieces of silver I should think.

  11. Mark Stuart says:

    Did you really mean that Rather should “just STFU.” or that he should STUFF it?
    Rather’s statement is in contradiction to the U.S. intelligence community reporting to the White House that Iran has not restarted its nuclear-weapons development program.
    And Colonel Lang tells us: that is correct.
    But is that the truth?

  12. WILL says:

    Rather, presumably a typewriter man from way back, did not have the smarts to tell proportional typeface from evenly spaced courier in the Dubya National Guard fiasco story on 60 minutes. Come On. Dan Rather has no credibility on anything!!! The man is an imbecile.

  13. frank durkee says:

    Note the report of Ehud Barak that “Iran obtaining a nucluer weapon is not an existential crisis for isreal in his judgement”. and the “secret” IEA addendum stating that they opine tha Iran is pursuing a weapons program.

  14. Jose says:

    Perfect timing, day after the Goldstone Report and attributed to “some people”.

  15. N. M. Salamon says:

    An interesting analysis of the nuclear issue from a Tehran prof who als has positions in USA think thanks:

  16. Cieran says:

    It’s time to pull the plug on the annual $15-20 Billion U.S. economic/trade/military aid to Israel.
    If Israel possesses nuclear weapons (and there’s every reason to believe that they do), then that U.S. aid is arguably illegal under the provisions of the Symington Amendment.
    So whether it’s time to pull the plug or not, it may be the law to do so…

  17. Charles I says:

    In the last week, I have heard radio news reports of Iran’s Supreme Leader reiterating the Fatwa against the use of nuclear weapons(vs deployment?).
    Today I heard in the car SecDef Gates reported stating Iranian ICBM’s, i.e. delivery capacity is a mite father off than stated in some quarters so we all can, should, relax.
    Clifford I sure hope that you’re wrong, or that as Krulak writes in Para 2 of his letter above, about a proper Afghani surge, there’s not enough capacity left to pull the Israeli’s chestnuts from the fire.

  18. curious says:

    my quick take.
    – Basic nuclear weapon technology is not very high tech. It’s 50’s technology. (single stage 20kt device) Any sufficiently industrialized country will be able to achieve it. Uranium itself is not the rarest metal. And nuclear power plant does have its appeal. Iran will keep their nuke, just as Pakistan and Israel defend their nuke.
    – Time to review the childish relationship between US and Iran. Because this conflict involved Israel/Hezbollah/Palestine And Israel will escalate to keep US engaged or they are toast. Israel has zero ability to sustain their occupation and military policy if US decide to change middle east policy. Israel is not willingn to play positive role. At this moment there is enough proof that they are as pernicous as apartheid regime. Elemination of the regime is the only answer. The formation of new Israel by global pressure is the only answer. 50 yrs is enough time to go beyond reasonable doubt what Israel current regime is all about. If current path continues, US will be involved in massive regional nuclear war in less than 2 decades.
    – in the next 3 yrs at least global economy cannot take any conflict that can drive up oil price. prolonged Japan style recession is very real for the US.
    – US is involved in 2 wars on Iran borders. (Iraq, Afghanistan) On top of fully supporting what Israel is doing. That fact alone would justify Iran to take US as serious hostile power. And nuclear is logical strategy for the Iranian to make sure any attack will be exponentially expensive (eg. nuking Kuwait port with 20kt weapon will very much grind US oil economy a halt and pin 100K US troop in Iraq with no easy supply line.)
    Nuking khyber pass does same thing minus the oil effect. These two doesn’t need missile to pull to be very effective strategic weapon.
    – Israel getting nuked? It’s their problem with Iran. Their nasty behavior determine world tolerant toward what they do. US cannot afford keep supporting Israel crime without itself being isolated from the world.
    – Failure to isolate Iran oil industry and quickly weakening US dollar are a strong sign that the global geopolitics are realigning. The post WWII era is finally over. All major powers has recovered and national influence between major power is quickly equalize. Russia and China will defend their national interest fiercely. Japan and Germany will end US occupation and be more independent in term of international politics and economy. NATO will not play post WWII role anymore.
    – The next major economic realignment will involved destruction of US dollar as global reserve currency. If that happens, than entire US fiscal policy then will have to answer to global market pricing. (oil, commodity, transportation cost)
    Bottom line: conflict with Iran is not just another middle east misadventure, it will greatly accelerate global geopolitical realignment, since it’s connected to oil price, and Russia/China insterest in central asia.
    It’s not going to be $150/barrel oil or if Russia will supply S-300. It will be a question of US putting troop in Israel and go to regional nuclear war that will destroy all major oil facilities in the middle east. It will be a question how to move around 300K troops around the entire length of Asia. From Israel all the way to western china.

  19. HMV says:

    Enriching enough uranium to make bombs requires a lot of electricity. Oak Ridge, for example, used 20 per cent more electricity than the entire city of New York at one point during the Manhattan Project.
    Granting that such usage wouldn’t stand out as much today, surely the US and Israeli governments have the surveillance capacity to tell whether or not some hidden/undeclared site within Iran is using this kind of enormous quantity of electricity. Until one of the two governments produces hard technical evidence of this sort, I’ll tend to think that international inspectors, who say there isn’t much cause for concern, are seeing everything there is to be seen. I’ll also take it that the ‘intelligence sources’ that crop up in news reports making wild claims are, at best, imagining things that don’t exist.

  20. DGH, Seattle says:

    Dan Rather got his new approved ranking with his comeuppance. This ranking gives him authority that would be missing if he had not had his comeuppance. Now we can trust him because the rightside screamers brought him down. Simple isn’t it?
    Anyway I’ve always covered my suspenders.

  21. A. Allen says:

    Some time back HRC gave a speech that I think was very telling of this Adminstration’s true position. Here it is — http://www.nytimes.com/2009/07/23/world/asia/23diplo.html?_r=1&bl&ex=1248408000&en=26edfbfbe564636f&ei=5087. In it she speaks of the need for defensive shield in the event of a nuclear Iran. At the time I interpreted her comments as a signal to Israel that we would not engage in agression on their behalf.
    I too do not believe the war talk will lead to anything. Common sense will prevail. This is all, of course, entirely ludicrous, as the MAD doctrine applies, if only the parties can be relied on to act rationally. My hunch is that the leadership of Iran is far more rational than the hot-heads/cynics that (mis-)lead Israel.

  22. confusedponderer says:

    I put Rather’s remark in context of this:
    Iran attack: Israel ex-min sees end-yr deadline
    and especially this:
    US-Iran Talks Start October 1.
    My hunch is that the people who persuaded Rather on the Iranian Menace, if he needed persuasion, oppose Obama’s talks with Iran, which Bill Kristol called “Obama’s message of weakness.”
    That of course only makes sense under the premise that after all, Iran is evil, and undoubtedly pursues nukes – so Obama just talking with them without preconditions, shows great weakness in face of evil. We don’t negotiate with evil, we defeat it! as one member of the last administration famously quipped. The spirit is still there, Iraq notwithstanding.
    Israeli fulminations over the dire threat posed by Iran are aimed on exerting pressure on the US. It is their variation of the ‘Madman doctrine’: The threat is dire, and if you don’t accommodate us, and quickly, we might just do something real crazy‘. If the talks with Iran fail, all the better for them, They’ll do their very best to facilitate failure.

  23. By the way how is Dan’s lawsuit doing or did I miss out on something? Is Dan showing that like the American INTEL community his reliance on a “Curve Ball” will reveal truths? Is the truth or reality just what most believe? The one solid piece of INTEL about Iran we do have is that they have been digging, digging, digging underground since 1979 usually with help of the Germans and their digging technology [still the world’s best as many NAZI underground facilities not known about until well after WWII]! So the reality is that without penetration by whatsoever means of these facilities many unknown to IAEA there is no basis upon which we (US) can know the truth. Since neither Israel nor the US has boots on the ground envisioned for Iran then this dog’s day [IRANs WMD efforts] is done and unless you have those 100 mech infantry divisions ready to seize and hold one of the world’s largest countries by geography and demographics this is not going to work out for anti-proliferation efforts. Oh well maybe we can stop Venezuela from WMDs!

  24. LeaNder says:

    Hmm? CP? MS?
    Any thoughts on the Goldstone UN report, Colonel?
    Can the US ever allow a precedent? So why not bury the “antisemitic UN” and its report under more war. To set the records straight: The right of the stronger and whoever sides with him is beyond law?
    Onward weary soldiers against the Muslim threat, Islam ante portas. Pan-Islamism threatening Europe, the US and the bastion of the righteous in the ME?
    This is good news.

  25. “a massive political warfare campaign”
    Yes indeed, and it needs to be examined closely. Per this issue the intrepid and well informed Raimundo casts light on the cast of characters. Again one might conclude there are some significant counterintelligence issues with respect to the war party…
    This time on BPC (Bipartisan Center) yet another Washington DC paper mill:
    “The Bloomberg piece attributes the BPC’s report on Iran to former Democratic Senator Chuck Robb, of Virginia, Republican Dan Coats, former Senator from Indiana, and retired Gen. Charles Walk, former deputy commander of the US European command. But as Jim Lobe, of IPS News Service, points out (here and here), the real authors were Makovsky and Michael Rubin, whose ideological orientation may indeed be “bipartisan” – after all, the neocons infest both parties – but who very definitely have an ideological axe to grind.
    “Makovsky is supposed to be some sort of expert on the oil industry, which is the capacity he served in for the Office of Special Plans – an odd job for someone whose doctorate is in history, and has no experience working in the energy industry. His older brother, David, is a senior fellow at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy – the “thinktank” wing of AIPAC, the leading pro-Israel lobby in the US. He once worked for Sen. John Danforth, after which he moved to Israel, where he intended to pursue a career as an Israeli diplomat (without, however, giving up his US citizenship), after serving in the Israeli military.” and etc.
    General Wald’s piece in the Wall Street Journal at:
    Wiki on Wald:
    “General Wald, director and senior advisor to the Aerospace & Defense Industry for Deloitte LLP, is responsible for providing senior leadership in strategy and relationships with defense contractors and Department of Defense (DOD) program executives. He is a subject matter specialist in weapons procurement and deployment, counter terrorism, national, energy and international security policy. Prior to joining Deloitte, General Wald was the Vice President, International Programs for L-3 Communications Corporation, based in Washington D.C.”…

  26. SAC Brat says:

    I hope you excuse my frivolity, but every time I look at your picture of Dan Rather I have to look again to make sure it isn’t Don Adams of the old television spy spoof “Get Smart” on the shoe phone. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Get_smart
    “Would you believe…?”

  27. confusedponderer says:

    I haven’t thought about the (pretty damning) Goldstone report in this context. Thanks.

  28. David Habakkuk says:

    Clifford Kiracofe,

    I have not looked at it closely, but it would surprise me greatly if the British Government had a Machiavellian strategy to inveigle the U.S. into war with Iran. What FB Ali said about Holbrooke applies to very many leading figures in Britain — they are rather stupid and do not think things through.

    Some remarks by the journalist John Kampfner, author of ‘Blair’s Wars’, give I think a good sense of the frivolity of foreign policy-making in London — and of the way the lessons of the shambles in Iraq have not been absorbed:

    ‘The problem is that, even now, we do not seem to be learning. Our foreign policy is based on strategies (if such a word can be used) which are at once hubristic, jejune and cowardly.

    ‘Downing Street and the Foreign Office have, for more than a decade, been hooked on their own soundbites, on being seen to be ‘tough’ (we have shrieked over Zimbabwe, Georgia and Burma to no meaningful effect).

    ‘At the same time, British politicians are frightened stiff of developing an approach that does not blindly follow the White House — although, thankfully, Barack Obama has learnt the lessons of the Blair era and sees the merits of keeping the supine British more at arms length.

    ‘Afghanistan is the latest theatre for our misplaced post- colonial ambitions, where our troops are committed in such a cavalier fashion, with such poor equipment, and amid such overstretch.’

    (See http://www.dailymail.co.uk/debate/article-1203599/JOHN-KAMPFNER-A-whitewash-Iraq-let-Blair-scot-free.html.)

    Much more serious, I think, are the activities of networks, cutting across both national boundaries and the public/private boundary, which are committed to trying to push both American and British policy in disastrous directions.

    The anthropologist Janine Wedel, author among other things of the classic 1998 article ‘The Harvard Boys do Russia’, has a book coming out about this subject — and on the section of her website devoted to her forthcoming book ‘Shadow Elite’ there is a useful little diagram of the network of links connecting Richard Perle to all kinds of different people and places: including of course Hollinger International.

    (For Wedel’s invaluable work, see http://janinewedel.info/index.html.)

    Some time ago on this blog ‘harper’ pointed to the account given in the biography by William Simpson of Prince Bandar of the 1985 al-Yamamah contract, in which BAE sold the Saudis arms and related services in exchange for oil. As he noted, this provided compelling evidence that this contract was structured from the outset to provide a means of funding covert operations. There is certainly reason to suspect that the wall of money which came out of al-Yamamah may have provided a major source of funding for the growth of a ‘shadow elite’ linking elements in Saudi Arabia, Britain, and the U.S.

    Here, the U.S. connections of Lady Thatcher’s former foreign policy adviser, Lord Charles Powell, would merit investigation — the obvious starting point being the private security company Diligence LLC.

    More recently, another wall of money has hit London, as the result of the enthusiasm of British elites for acting as receivers for the monies which were looted by kleptocrats in Russia, to a substantial extent as a result of the activities of the ‘Harvard boys’ — which has also impacted the ‘shadow elite’.

    The transnational nature of these networks facilitates their use for disinformation, including in particular disinformation involving nuclear scaremongering. The record of MI6 is particularly disgraceful in facilitating the efforts of nuclear scaremongerers. The same organisation which recycled disinformation suggesting that Saddam had an active nuclear programme has since recycled disinformation suggesting that Putin is a pioneer of nuclear terrorism.

    Whether the replacement of Sir John Scarlett by Sir John Sawers will lead to any clean-up in the organisation remains an open question. But there is already compelling evidence of attempts by element in these ‘shadow elites’ to kill two birds with one stone, by placing disinformation about covert sales of arms and military technology from Russia to Iran.

  29. N. M. Salamon says:

    Ehmud Barak: Iran is not an existential threat to Israel:
    And we have AIPAC and warmongers in USA

  30. confusedponderer says:

    Hagee is atm sending out e-mails on the dire Iranian threat, and asks recipients to contact their congressmen to support the Iran Refined Petroleum Sanctions Act of 2009 – a legislation clearly designed to torpedo talks with Iran.
    It’s concerted political warfare against Obama’s talks with Iran.

  31. Cynthia says:

    One surefire way for East Europeans to have made certain that their US-backed missile defense system never got the axe was to have rubbed gobs of grease into the palms of Washington insiders. And the only way to have done this is to do as Israel did: form a very powerful lobby on K Street and make certain that it’s exempt from being listed as an agent of a foreign government.
    And it goes without saying the Israelis are all up in arms over Iran getting the Bomb not because they are afraid to death that Iran will wiped them off the map, but because they are afraid that no longer being the lone nuke power in the Middle East will mean they’ll no longer be free to bully Arab Muslims into submission.
    Plus I’d like to think, naive though it may sound, that East Europeans aren’t so unscrupulous as to trick the American people into wasting lots of US blood and treasure on behalf of Eastern Europe, and that they aren’t so thuggish as to wage war against innocent and defenseless people that are about as militarily challenging as shooting fish in a barrel!

  32. David Habakkuk,
    Thanks very much for the insights. I look forward to the book by Wedel about transnational networks.
    Well we can sharpen our definitions of what constitutes “stupid” and then what constitutes criminal, illegal, and even treasonous behavior.
    Yes, I agree that such networks are indeed a central problem within the international system. They need to be identified and mapped out. They need to be suppressed by the intelligence and law enforcement machinery available to sovereign governments.
    I suspect that in some cases the networks of ostensibly “respectable” people of the political and business overworld overlap and intersect with networks in the criminal underworld.
    Further, we can see the intersection of certain networks of respectable “businessmen” in Saudi Arabia, the Gulf, Egypt and etc. with terrorist organizations such as Al-Qaeda. And how about that brother of Bin Laden based in Europe…
    Respectable businessmen/financiers in London, in Paris, in Frankfurt, on Wall Street supported the Nazi movement and Hitler, and Mussolini before him for example.
    These networks constitute what I mentioned in one of the posts as “designing men and women.” IMO they are not stupid but rather intelligent, corrupt, and ruthless.
    As I also indicated, IMO there are also networks of “stupid” and interested persons looking for easy money and whatever else including the “honours” received by Ms. Marriott. She may also fall into the designing men and women camp but I don’t have enough data to place her.
    I was very happy to see our Director of National Intelligence in the new National Intelligence Strategy issued this week give emphasis to international organized crime. This was foreshadowed in the earlier NIC 2025 study both of which urls I put in a comment yesterday.
    Thus our appropriate institutions should bring increased pressure on these networks and also the international terrorist networks with whom they seem to intersect. We have a major problem with this now in Venezuela-Mexico and linkages to Islamic terrorist operations.
    As you indicate, respectable business organizations and businessmen such as the BAE situation Harper has told SST readers about can have interlinking relations with underworld criminal and terrorist organizations.
    As long as we are on the AIPAC-Iran War-Neocon track, I would also draw attention to the interlinkages between “pro-Israel” political personages and organizations and organized crime. In the US, our historic national crime syndicate (NCS) so to speak has been composed of Italian networks and Jewish networks. Meyer Lansky would be a case in point for leading the Jewish ethnic side of organized crime. While I have not noted the Italian mafia being particularly “pro-Israel” one does note this among the Jewish organized crime circles, historically since the 1940s.
    With respect to the matters of MI6 disinformation you mention, I take it the organization is under orders from superiors to do this? This is what I meant by my earlier comments. If superiors somewhere in the machinery of the British system are ordering such activity then I take it to be British policy but I am not that familiar with the ins and outs of the British system.
    The last chapter in my new book concerns Hagee and the “next war”, the one with Iran. “Dark Crusade: US Foreign Policy and Christian Zionism (London: IB Tauris, 2009). Perhaps the book will be of interest to you.

  33. Arun says:

    I insist on my second amendment rights to bear nuclear arms! I don’t see the second amendment limiting us to guns. By extension, Iranians also have that right, the right being fundamental and all that….

  34. Mark Stuart says:

    Could it be a bluff from Tehran to force the international community to rein in Israel’s own nuclear capabilities or at least have observers on the ground?
    As benign as it might seem to Americans, Israelis would overwhelmingly see harmless international observers as a direct threat to their sovereignty but also to their security. It would be reminiscent of the pre-1948 direct tutelage they had to endure the world over.
    I was conjecturing in a previous post by our host that during discussions with the Obama administration, “Iran would want to bring the Israeli nuclear program to the table under the broader regional non-proliferation agenda, before any talk about their own program.”
    This recent piece of news seems to comfort me in that opinion.
    UN urges Israel to allow nuclear inspection Al Arabia News Channel

  35. DWhite says:

    What’s the frequency Kenneth?

  36. Tyler says:

    I wonder which agency or group of (federal law enforcement/intelligence) agents acting in concert is going to try and torpedo the war with Iran drumbeat like last time.
    Godspeed to them.

  37. confusedponderer says:

    I have it bookmarked for some time now, but not yet ordered it as I wouldn’t have time to read it atm.

  38. confusedponderer says:


    C’mon, the USA scraps its eastern european missile shield project right after Netanyahu pays an unexpected visit to Moskow.

    Richard Seale has an interesting article on the matter, that involves the mysterious travels of the freighter Arctic Sea: Netanyahu’s Mysterious Moscow Visit

  39. YT says:

    Col., sir: Was just readin’ some article on the Anabasis by the Greek strategos, Xenophon. & I was wonderin’ if the U.S. of A is blessed to have a Xenophon in her ranks. Coz’ if the War on Terror™ (don’t even know what to call it no more) brings the front to iran, fæcal matter hitting the blades of the proverbial rotor is gonna involve a man of equal talent to bring the troops back. Déjà vu?

  40. F B Ali says:

    This could be the occasion for Obama to fulfil some of the high hopes vested in him.
    Those who had so many expectations of him have been sorely disappointed. He blinked before the Wall Street tycoons. His healthcare reform is seriously watered down. By placating Israel, his Middle East peace initiative is going nowhere. Above all, he is substituting his Afghanistan war for Bush’s Iraq war (and, possibly, even the disastrous Vietnam quagmire). Surrounded by powerful special interests and seasoned Washington players, he seems out of his depth, an easy prey to steering and manipulation.
    He probably justifies all this by saying that the President’s powers are limited, that he is up against established systems which he cannot afford to shake too much, that he has to take other powerful players along to get things done in Washington. All this may be true, especially for a newcomer to that office, entangled in Axelrod’s political calculus and Emanuel’s practicality logic. But there is one power that the Presidency has which is subject to no limitations – the power to say No, and make anything within the purview of the executive branch stop dead in its tracks.
    John Kennedy did that. He had hardly stepped into the office when the military-intelligence establishment, with their political allies, dragged him into the Bay of Pigs fiasco; all he could do was grimace and accept responsibility. When the Cuban missile crisis erupted, these characters were again all for war, especially the generals, jumping up and down and demanding that the missile sites be bombed. But this time Kennedy was surer of himself – he took counsel of his intelligence and his instinct, and he said, No! And that was that.
    Obama can do the same. When all these powerful lobbies and interests begin the final push for an attack on Iran, he can just say, No! He will thus serve the United States (and himself) well.

  41. @FB Ali,
    I certainly hope you are right.
    From where I sit, however, its not only unclear that he will say “NO,” but that even if he did, his no would not stop dead in its tracks the machinations underway in the capital city.

  42. JerseyJeffersonian says:

    F B Ali,
    This world does not need more hatred and the suffering it brings. Permitting the infinite regress of blame and revenge to hold sway over our thoughts and deeds imperils not only the living, but even those not yet born. The cycle must be broken.

  43. FB Ali,
    Yes, and one question to ask is, “What was Gen. Powell’s advice to the President this week?”
    President Obama turns to Colin Powell for advice on war in Afghanistan
    WASHINGTON: – An undecided President Obama asked Colin Powell on Wednesday whether to increase the number of U.S. troops in Afghanistan.
    Before meeting with the former secretary of state and ex-chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Obama insisted, “There is no immediate decision pending” on whether he will send thousands more troops into Afghanistan.
    “I’m going to take a very deliberate process in making those decisions,” Obama said. “You don’t make determinations about resources, and certainly you don’t make determinations about sending young men and women into battle without having absolute clarity about what the strategy is going to be.”
    Obama summoned Powell and later Defense Secretary Robert Gates, both of whom served under President George W. Bush, to hear their ideas on the war in Afghanistan.
    “The President greatly values the counsel of Gen. Powell on a number of different issues,” said White House spokesman Robert Gibbs.
    Talk about vindication – Powell, whose war doctrine calls for invading an enemy with a massive force, was repeatedly shot down by ex-Vice President Dick Cheney and Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, who favored sending a smaller army into Iraq to oust Saddam Hussein.
    Powell was proven right when the occupation became a bloody war and the Pentagon was forced to send a “surge” force of more than 20,000 troops into Iraq.
    Perhaps he will get better advice from a fellow African-American than from the Zionists and ambitious (and designing) white gentiles surrounding him and lurking behind the scenes inside the Beltway and elsewhere.
    Knowing that he might wish to avert US involvement in a war against Iran, those supporting it as I have mentioned could opt for the Suez ploy. Let Israel initiate and them come in behind the propaganda cover of taking out a Hitler type “existential threat” and supporting brave little Israel. I must say Amadinejad is playing his Hitler revival role rather well lately.
    Even if war against Iran is avoided, the President at some point must have a clear and coherent national strategy to deal with the multipolar world as it is and may well become.
    Right now we are apparently running on George Bush era documents produced by the Pentagon.
    Here is a useful tabulation:
    The militarization of US national strategy and foreign policy is a problem as one might observe from our current predicament(s).

  44. jr786 says:

    @FB Ali
    I’m reminded somehow of the bad King who asked a dervish how he, the King, might best serve his people.
    “Sleep until 3”, responded the poor man.
    It’s hard to sit still when most people are panicking – let’s hope Obama has the wisdom do so.

  45. Bill Wade, NH says:

    “Former national security adviser Zbigniew Brzezinski has urged US President Barack Obama to make it clear that if the IAF tries to launch an attack on Iran’s nuclear facilities via Iraqi airspace, the US Air Force will shoot down the Israeli jets.”
    “We are not exactly impotent little babies,”
    Brzezinski told The Daily Beast in an interview published Sunday. “They have to fly over our airspace in Iraq. Are we just going to sit there and watch? … We have to be serious about denying them that right. That means a denial where you aren’t just saying it. If they fly over, you go up and confront them. They have the choice of turning back or not. No one wishes for this but it could be a ‘Liberty’ in reverse.”
    Interesting comments follow this article.

  46. optimax says:

    “secret annex” sounds suspiciously similar to Dean Wormer’s “double-secret probation.”
    What happened to the screenwriters who were going to be hired (can’t remember if HLS or who was going to hire them) at the beginning of the War on Terror to brainstorm terrorist scenarios for the planning of counter-terrorism?

  47. YT says:

    Mr Kiracofe,
    Re: “Respectable businessmen/financiers in London, in Paris, in Frankfurt, on Wall Street supported the Nazi movement and Hitler, and Mussolini before him for example.”
    & I thought no academics would ever take notice. No student of economics or finance, but I wonder whether the present instability in the money world is a direct result of machiavellian schemes again…

  48. Babak Makkinejad says:

    No conspiracy here – there are not so many smart people in the world.

  49. YT says:

    Babak Makkinejad:
    My sentiments exactly, kind sir. Especially those living in my part of the region…

  50. optimax says:

    Doubt if the smart people actually started the economic meltdown as a predetermined game plan, but they do understand trends and know how to take advantage of regulatory changes and, most importantly, know the dynamics of herd mentality. And having pals in the Treasury and Fed allowed them to win when the meltdown started and turning into economic warfare, since many CEO’s, having read Machiavelli and Sun Tszu, think of themselves as Warrior Princes, and will take advantage of an opponent’s weakness because that’s what they’re trained to do.

  51. YT says:

    Well, ya know what they say, “Greed is good”. What was that d*** movie again?

  52. optimax says:

    “Wall Street.” Oliver Stone is directing a sequel at this moment. It’ll be about the most recent economic meltdown. Many people, Stone included, thought the S&L crisis of the 80’s would reign in the excesses of the FIRE sector, but instead of increasing regulation the government loosened it, allowing the con-artists to continue their rigged game.

  53. YT says:

    Food for thought —
    “Permit me to issue and control the money of a nation, and I care not who makes its laws.”: Mayer Amschel Rothschild

  54. optimax says:

    “If the world wants slaves, it will make slaves. If the world wants intelligence, it will create geniuses” Leon Battista Alberti, from Rossellini’s movie “The Age of the Medici.” My quote probably isn’t word-for-word but that’s the gist of it.

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