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IAEA Again Verifies Iranian Compliance-Neo-crazy Media Sycophants Drum for War!
« on: 2007-11-17 10:21:44 »
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IAEA Again Verifies Iranian Compliance

Physicist James Gordon Prather has served as a policy implementing official for national security-related technical matters in the Federal Energy Agency, the Energy Research and Development Administration, the Department of Energy, the Office of the Secretary of Defense and the Department of the Army. Dr. Prather also served as legislative assistant for national security affairs to U.S. Sen. Henry Bellmon, R-Okla. -- ranking member of the Senate Budget Committee and member of the Senate Energy Committee and Appropriations Committee. Dr. Prather had earlier worked as a nuclear weapons physicist at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in California and Sandia National Laboratory in New Mexico.

Source: Antiwar
Authors: Gordon Prather
Dated: 2007-11-17

Hallelujah! The International Atomic Energy Agency has, once again, verified "the non-diversion of declared nuclear material in Iran." It seems the Iranians continue to provide the IAEA access to all "special nuclear materials" – as proscribed [Hermit: prescribed may have been meant here, although proscribed materials may fit too] by the Treaty on Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons – and all relevant nuclear material accountancy reports, as well as access to all activities involving said materials.

So, let the dancing in the streets commence!

But wait a minute.

Even though compliance by Iran is the principal and only conclusion of the current IAEA report [.pdf] – entitled Implementation of the NPT Safeguards Agreement and relevant provisions of Security Council resolutions 1737 and 1747 in the Islamic Republic of Iran – the neo-crazy media sycophants at the New York Times don't even mention it in their "report" on the IAEA report!

Well, if they don't even mention the IAEA report's principal conclusion – that Iran is compliant with its NPT Safeguards Agreement – what do Elaine Sciolino and William Broad report?

That Iran has not suspended its uranium-enrichment activies, "contrary to the decisions of the Security Council"?

No, no.

Quoth Sciolino-Broad:

"VIENNA, Nov. 15 — A new report says Iran has made new but incomplete disclosures about its past nuclear activities, missing a key deadline under an agreement with the IAEA."

Incomplete "disclosures"?

Missed a "key deadline"?

Wrong, wrong.

Nowhere in the IAEA report does Director-General Mohamed ElBaradei even suggest that Iran has missed a "key deadline" previously agreed to by Iran and the IAEA. Furthermore, far from complaining about "incomplete disclosures," ElBaradei reported that Iran has provided "sufficient access" to individuals, and has "responded in a timely manner" to questions, and provided "clarifications and amplifications" on issues raised in the context of the "work plan."

ElBaradei even reports – not unfavorably – the Iranian-supplied justification for the secretive manner in which they have pursued the civilian nuclear power fuel-cycle which both the IAEA Statute and the NPT assure them is their inalienable right.


"According to Iran, in its early years, the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) concluded a number of contracts with entities from France, Germany, the United Kingdom and the United States of America to enable it to acquire nuclear power and a wide range of related nuclear fuel cycle services, but after the 1979 revolution, these contracts with a total value of around $10 billion were not fulfilled.

"Iran noted that one of the contracts, signed in 1976, was for the development of a pilot plant for laser enrichment.

"Senior Iranian officials said that, in the mid-1980s, Iran started working with many countries to revitalize its nuclear programme to meet the State's growing energy needs. Taking advantage of investments already made, Iran said it focused its efforts initially on the completion of the Bushehr nuclear power plant, working with entities from, inter alia, Argentina, France, Germany and Spain, but without success.

"At that time, Iran also initiated efforts to acquire research reactors from Argentina, China, India and the former Soviet Union, but also without success.

"Parallel to the activities related to nuclear power plants, Iran started to build supporting infrastructure by establishing nuclear technology centres in Esfahan and Karaj.

"However, apart from uranium conversion technology acquired from an entity in China, Iran was not able to acquire other nuclear fuel cycle facilities or technology from abroad.

"As a result, according to Iran, a decision was made in the mid-1980s to acquire uranium enrichment technology on the black market."


Now, bear in mind that the IAEA's primary mission is to facilitate the fullest possible transfer – for peaceful purposes – of nuclear materials and technology from the "have" states to the "have-not" states. True, the IAEA is required to ensure – "insofar as it is able" – that the technology and materials so transferred are not diverted to a military purpose. But, Bonkers Bolton to the contrary, that's not IAEA's primary mission.

Furthermore, the "have" states are obligated under the IAEA Statute and under the NPT to facilitate that transfer – for peaceful purposes.

Hence, that history of Iran's attempts to obtain their "inalienable" rights under the IAEA Statute and NPT – if verified by the IAEA – constitutes an indictment of the IAEA's long-term abdication of its primary mission. To say nothing of an indictment of the perverse stewardship of "have" states, such as the United States.


So, how's ElBaradei's verification of Iran's story going?

"To assess the detailed information provided by Iran, the Agency held discussions with senior current and former Iranian officials.

"The Agency also examined supporting documentation, including Iranian legislation, contracts with foreign companies, agreements with other States and nuclear site surveys.

"Bearing in mind the long history and complexity of the program and the dual nature of enrichment technology, the Agency is not in a position, based on the information currently available to it, to draw conclusions about the original underlying nature of parts of the program.

"Further light may be shed on this question when other aspects of the work plan have been addressed and when the Agency has been able to verify the completeness of Iran's declarations."


Okay, Sciolino-Broad didn't even mention the principal conclusion of ElBaradei's report, nor did they appear to understand the potential dynamite of ElBaradei's ongoing assessment of the truth of Iran's allegations. So, what did Sciolino-Broad focus on.

"The agency's report also confirmed for the first time that Iran has now crossed the major milestone of putting 3,000 centrifuges into operation, a tenfold increase from just a year ago. In theory, that means that Iran could produce enough uranium to make a nuclear weapon within a year to 18 months."

In whose theory?

What neo-crazy crackpot told gullible [or complicit?] New York Times' reporters that gas centrifuges could produce uranium at all, much less produce weapons-grade almost pure Uranium-235?

Uranium-enrichment plants don't "produce" uranium, they "cast out" the Uranium-238 istopes from the uranium-hexafluoride fed them.


What ElBaradei "verified" was that Iran had finished installing eighteen 164-machine cascades and that uranium-hexafluoride had been fed into all 18 cascades. ElBaradei also reported that the "feed rate" as well as the enrichment level – both of which the IAEA "audits" – have remained low.

But Sciolino-Broad did get one thing right. ElBaradei did complain that Iran's "cooperation has been reactive, rather than proactive."

Whatever that means.
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Re: IAEA Again Verifies Iranian Compliance-Neo-crazy Media Sycophants Drum for W
« Reply #1 on: 2008-02-18 01:12:18 »
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House cleaning my gif bin offered up this gem; seemed to belong here.

Not always appropriate

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Re: IAEA Again Verifies Iranian Compliance-Neo-crazy Media Sycophants Drum for W
« Reply #2 on: 2008-02-27 02:13:32 »
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Re: IAEA Again Verifies Iranian Compliance-Neo-crazy Media Sycophants Drum for W
« Reply #3 on: 2008-03-01 17:08:57 »
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Iran’s Sisyphean Task

Source: Antiwar
Authors: Gordon Prather
Dated: 2008-03-01

Physicist James Gordon Prather has served as a policy implementing official for national security-related technical matters in the Federal Energy Agency, the Energy Research and Development Administration, the Department of Energy, the Office of the Secretary of Defense and the Department of the Army. Dr. Prather also served as legislative assistant for national security affairs to U.S. Sen. Henry Bellmon, R-Okla. -- ranking member of the Senate Budget Committee and member of the Senate Energy Committee and Appropriations Committee. Dr. Prather had earlier worked as a nuclear weapons physicist at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in California and Sandia National Laboratory in New Mexico.

Sisyphus was a character in Greek mythology, condemned to roll a huge rock to the top of a steep hill, with said accursed rock rolling back down again the moment Sisyphus thought he had accomplished his task.

In the modern version of this Greek tragedy, G. Aghazadeh, Vice-President of Iran and President of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran, has been cast as Sisyphus.
The tragedy has its origin in the 1974 agreement between Iran and the International Atomic Energy Agency for the application of "safeguards" – in accordance with the IAEA Statute – on certain materials and activities proscribed by the Treaty on Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons.

The Safeguards Agreement was agreed to by Iran "for the exclusive purpose of verification" by the IAEA "with a view of preventing diversion" of any "source or special fissionable material" to a military purpose.

IAEA Safeguards were to be applied to all Iranian source or special fissionable materials, whether being stored or chemically/physically produced, processed, transformed, utilized or disposed of as waste.

Last week Mohamed ElBaradei, IAEA Director-General, made his most recent report to the IAEA Board of Governors, entitled "Implementation of the NPT Safeguards Agreement and relevant provisions of Security Council resolutions 1737 and 1747 in the Islamic Republic of Iran."

So, what does ElBaradei have to say about the Iranian NPT Safeguards Agreement?

"The Agency has been able to continue to verify the non-diversion of declared nuclear material in Iran.

"Iran has provided the Agency with access to declared nuclear material and has provided the required nuclear material accountancy reports in connection with declared nuclear material and activities."


Okay, that’s that. The huge rock has been pushed to the top. Iran continues to be in full compliance with all its obligations assumed as a NPT signatory.

But ElBaradei goes on.

"Iran has also responded to questions and provided clarifications and amplifications on the issues raised in the context of the work plan, with the exception of the alleged studies."

Work plan? Alleged studies?

What is ElBaradei talking about?

Well, on August 21, 2007, ElBaradei came to an "understanding" with Iran on a "work plan" for resolving outstanding "issues" – many of them originally raised in the summer of 2005, by the Cheney Cabal, based upon studies allegedly contained on an stolen laptop computer, said to belong to an Iranian engineer (by then supposedly deceased) tangentially related to the implementation of Iran’s Safeguards Agreement.

But,
according to ElBaradei:

"The Agency has been able to conclude that answers provided by Iran, in accordance with the work plan, are consistent with its findings — in the case of the polonium-210 experiments and the Gchine mine — or are not inconsistent with its findings — in the case of the contamination at the technical university and the procurement activities of the former Head of PHRC."

Okay, not only is Iran in full compliance with its NPT Safeguards Agreement, but has provided accurate or not-inaccurate explanations for a dozen or so "issues" – some of them related to activities in the 1980s and 1990s, many unrelated or that are only tangentially related to its compliance with its Safeguards Agreement.


"The one major remaining issue relevant to the nature of Iran’s nuclear program is the alleged studies on the "green salt" project, high explosives testing and the missile re-entry vehicle."

Then ElBaradei reminds the Board:

"However, it should be noted that the Agency has not detected the use of nuclear material in connection with the alleged studies, nor does it have credible information in this regard."

So, no need to push the rock to the top again; the alleged studies are evidently none of the IAEA Board’s business.


The principal mission of the IAEA is to "enlarge the contribution of atomic energy to peace, health and prosperity throughout the world." In accomplishing its principal mission, the IAEA "shall ensure, so far as it is able" that any such contribution under its control "is not used in such a way as to further any military purpose."

But, you see, back in November, 2003, Iran signed an Additional Protocol to its Safeguards Agreement, and immediately began cooperating with ElBaradei in advance of its entering into force, legally.

Under the Additional Protocol, ElBaradei would be justified in making the following statements about the "alleged studies":

"This is a matter of serious concern and critical to an assessment of a possible military dimension to Iran’s nuclear program.

"The Agency was able to show some relevant documentation to Iran on 3–5 February 2008 and is still examining the allegations made and the statements provided by Iran in response.

"Iran has maintained that these allegations are baseless and that the data have been fabricated.

"The Agency’s overall assessment requires, inter alia, an understanding of the role of the uranium metal document, and clarifications concerning the procurement activities of some military related institutions still not provided by Iran."

But, ElBaradei’s report makes clear that "an understanding" of the "uranium metal document" requires a response to his questions by Pakistan, not Iran.

ElBaradei’s report also makes it clear that Iran has provided explanations of virtually all "procurement activities" involving "military-related institutions" that can only be described as "dual-use" equipment, such as vacuum pumps.


Finally, ElBaradei notes that;

"The Agency only received authorization to show some further material to Iran on 15 February 2008. Iran has not yet responded to the Agency’s request of that same date for Iran to view this additional documentation on the alleged studies."

Incredible. On the eve of what was expected to be ElBaradei’s standard report on the total compliance of Iran with its Safeguards Agreement, also containing his final report on resolution of the issues addressed in the "work plan," the National Council of Resistance on Iran – the "political arm" of a U.S. State Department designated "terrorist organization" – went public with highly inflammatory and basically irrelevant charges to the IAEA that Iran (a) had recently established a "new command and control center" at a military site at Mojdeh, a suburb of Tehran, for a program code-named Lavizan-2, and (b) was actively pursuing "production of nuclear warheads" at a military site at Khojir, code-named B1-Nori-8500.

So, according to ElBaradei, he didn’t even get permission from the Cheney Cabal to reveal to the Iranians the latest "terrorist organization" charges until a week before he finished his final report on the "work plan," and, as of the date of his report to the IAEA Board, Iran had not yet even had a chance to learn what allegations had been made.


"In an interview concerning his latest report, ElBaradei attempted to explain why his verification of the non-diversion of Iranian NPT proscribed materials – thereby concluding his NPT-enabled mission – was not the end of it. In light of the above, the Agency is not yet in a position to determine the full nature of Iran’s nuclear program.

"In addition to our work, to clarify Iran´s past nuclear activities, we have to make sure, naturally, that Iran´s current activities are also exclusively for peace purposes and for that we have been asking Iran to conclude the so called Additional Protocol, which gives us the additional authority to visit places, additional authority to have additional documents, to be able to provide assurance, not only that Iran´s declared activities are for peaceful purposes but that there are no undeclared nuclear activities."

What ElBaradei should have said was, if and only if the Iranian Parliament had ratified the Additional Protocol, then he would have been authorized to "clarify Iran’s past nuclear activities" and to attempt to provide assurance that there are no "undeclared nuclear activities."

But, thanks to the Cheney Cabal’s "smoking laptop" accusations, beginning in the summer of 2005, the Iranian Parliament declined to ratify the Additional Protocol and two years ago and directed their Atomic Energy Organization to stop complying with any of its provisions.

So, ElBaradei isn’t so authorized. And, as far as the Iranians are concerned, Sisyphus can cease perputally rolling the Cheney Cabal’s giant rock to the top of the hill.


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Re: IAEA Again Verifies Iranian Compliance-Neo-crazy Media Sycophants Drum for W
« Reply #4 on: 2008-03-21 18:27:26 »
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Bush erroneously says Iran announced desire for nuclear weapons

Source: McClatchy Newspapers
Authors: Jonathan S. Landay
Dated: 2008-03-20


[ Hermit : The lies continue ]

President Bush contended that Iran has "declared they want a nuclear weapon to destroy people" and that the Islamic Republic could be hiding a secret program.

Iran, however, has never publicly proclaimed a desire for nuclear weapons and has repeatedly insisted that the uranium enrichment program it's operating in defiance of U.N. Security Council resolutions is for civilian power plants, not warheads.


Bush made his assertion Wednesday in an interview marking the Iranian New Year with Radio Farda, a U.S. government-run radio service that broadcasts into Iran in the Farsi language. The White House released the transcript on Thursday.

The president reiterated his view that Iran has a right to civilian nuclear power. But, he said, the low-enriched uranium fuel for its reactors should be supplied by Russia, a proposal that Tehran has repeatedly rejected. [ Hermit : By treaty, ratified by the US, Iran has the right to produce fuel for its own reactors. The same treaty says that the US should not be supplying Israel or India with dual use technologies (which we do), may not supply India with nuclear technology (which Bush wants to do) and should be actively reducing our nuclear stockpiles (which Bush wishes to expand). This repeated assertion by Cheney, Bush and now McCain is not just a lie, but a mass of lies. ]

"The problem is the (Iranian) government cannot be trusted to enrich uranium because one, they've hidden programs in the past and they may be hiding one now. Who knows?" said Bush. [ Hermit : Iran has not hidden any programs which they are required, by treaty, to disclose. Iran did not publicize research that they were performing or clandestine preparations they were making for enrichment due to the threat of the USA acting to block these programs. However there was no treaty obligation to do so prior to the introduction of nuclear material to those programs, and they did disclose them when required by treaty. It is important to note that these are the programs which are being portrayed by the US as the "weapons programs" which Iran ceased in 2003. However, contra USA assertions, Iran has consistently voiced its opposition to all and any nuclear weapons. Indeed, before American intervention Iran voluntarily signed additional protocols permitting intrusive inspections. Unfortunately, as Iran stated it would have to do to preserve its ability to continue to exercise its rights to operate perfectly legal programs (by reintroducing confidentiality to prevent interference with its supplies) before illegal sanctions were foisted upon it, the voluntary protocols were not renewed in response to the introduction of "targeted" sanctions. Similar intrusive inspection protocols almost certainly could be restored as part of a comprehensive non-aggression treaty made in good faith by the USA with Iran.]

"Secondly, they've declared they want to have a nuclear weapon to destroy people, some in the Middle East. And that is unacceptable to the United States and it's unacceptable to the world."

Iran has repeatedly denied seeking nuclear warheads, and its supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, issued a religious edict in 2005 forbidding the production, stockpiling and use of such weapons.

Asked about the president's comment, Gordon Johndroe, a White House spokesman, said Bush had "shorthanded" Iran's desire "to wipe Israel off the map," its refusal to heed U.N. Security Council demands to suspend its enrichment work and Iran's continued development of ballistic missiles.

Asked if Iran could exploit Bush's inaccurate comment for political purposes, Johndroe replied: "I'm not concerned about that. If they want to spin it a certain way, they can do it any way they want. They have still called for Israel to be wiped off the map and are in violation of three U.N. Security Council resolutions."
[ Hermit : As weakly noted below, and repeatedly proved on the CoV BBS, Iran has never stated a desire to see Israel wiped off the map, rather Ahmadinejad (mis)quoted Khomeni ('Sahneh roozgar' (the pages of time) instead of 'Safheh roozgar' (the scenes of time)) expressing his belief that the regime occupying Jerusalem (which, to make even more clear is not the same as the State of Israel ,he compared it with the "illegitimate regime of the Shah which has already vanished") would not survive the passage of time (literally, "the regime occupying Jerusalem must vanish from the page of time" Prof Juan Cole) and this was mistranslated (by the BBC), pounced on by Zionist sources and has been used ever since as a very successful propaganda tool. Note that if you were to ask Bush or Cheney, or indeed even Hillary Clinton whether they thought that the Book of Revelations said that Israel would not be destroyed in the battle of Armageddon, they would in fact (if honest) say that they believe that the state of Israel must exist in order for it to be destroyed to fulfill the eschatology in which they vest their faith. In other words, the beliefs of the fundamentalists running the theocracy of the USA anticipate a far more dire end to the entire area encompassing territories of Israel, Jordan, the Palestine and Lebanon than the vague wishes of Ahmadinejad. Only the mealy-mouthed hypocrites running the USA are careful to avoid addressing the implications of their beliefs - when it suits them. It should be noted that Iran has adopted the perfectly reasonable position that the demands of the UN Security council for them to cease actions protected by treaty while ignoring the far greater infractions and threats to peace by those behind the demands, are illegal, inequitable and just plain wrong and that they have apparently decided that the nominal costs of rejecting these demands are far smaller than the costs of acceding to them (in which they are likely correct). Finally, given the USA's ongoing resistance to treaties banning the weaponization of space, the positioning by Israel and the USA of satellites over Iran, together with the fact that both of these declared enemies who have, in contravention of the UN grand charter to which both are signatories, announced the possibility or even probability of attacking Iran,  possess vast numbers of missiles, ballistic and otherwise, targeting Iran, Iran's efforts to address the imbalance are not only completely legal, but also perfectly comprehensible. ]

Speaking in October 2005 at a "World Without Zionism" conference, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was quoted by state-run Iranian media as saying that "Israel must be wiped off the map." [ Hermit : The publication of the transcript was in Farsi. The faulty translation was made by the BBC ]

Some experts, however, disputed the translation, saying that Ahmadinejad's comment couldn't be interpreted as a threat to use force against Israel. [ Hermit : Actually nobody who knows Farsi and has a reputation to protect has agreed that Ahmadinejad has threatened Israel - for the simple reason that it simply is not possible to infer a threat from his words.]

Meanwhile, the State Department announced targeted new restrictions on a bank in Bahrain, which is controlled by the Iran-based Bank Melli, and additional scrutiny of any vessel calling at a U.S. port that has recently visited Iran. It said Iran hadn't maintained "effective anti-terrorism measures" at its ports.

"The international community will not allow the Iranian government to misuse the international financial system or global transportation network to further its aspirations to obtain nuclear weapons capability, improve its missile systems or support international terrorism," State Department spokesman Sean McCormack said. [ Hermit : I wonder who conflated "the international community" and the State Department? Meanwhile our threatening to attack Iran, sponsorship of Iranian terrorist groups and sponsoring groups to suborn the democratic process in Iran are completely ignored. ]

The Treasury Department also warned U.S. banks that Iran is using "an array of deceptive practices" to circumvent international financial sanctions. [ Hermit : Ha ha. ]

The department said that it is "particularly concerned that the central bank of Iran may be facilitating transactions for sanctioned Iranian banks."

In the Radio Farda interview, Bush said, "There's a chance that the U.S. and Iran could reconcile their differences," but only if Iran verifiably suspends its uranium enrichment program. [ Please note that Iran previously did suspend their program and only resumed Uranium enrichment in response  to totally illegal American threats and very public pressure by the US on Russia not to supply Iran with required materials. ]

"The Iranian people have got to understand that the United States is going to be firm in our desire to prevent the nation from developing a nuclear weapon, but reasonable in our desire to see to it that you have a civilian nuclear program . . . without enabling the government to enrich." [ Hermit : But it is Iran's right to enrich material, guaranteed as part of the non-proliferation treaty to which the US is a signatory and is thus bound to assist  Iran so long as Iran's program is for peaceful uses - which Iran avers it is and nobody has proved is not. Leaving the US in breach of the treaty, not Iran. ]

Enrichment produces both low-enriched uranium, which is used to fuel nuclear power plants, and highly enriched uranium for nuclear weapons, depending on the duration of the process. [ Hermit : Only a journalist could make a sweeping simplification like this while missing the main point. Which is that were any inspected centrifuge used to produce highly enriched material, it would be detected at the very next inspection as the isotope signature cannot be disguised. End of story. Meanwhile, with the centrifuges currently in use by Iran, the assertion about duration being the only criteria is only true if you have effectively unlimited energy resources and unlimited time in which to do this. ]

Iran kept its program hidden for 18 years until its disclosure by an Iranian opposition group in 2002.

A December 2007 U.S. intelligence report said Iran halted work on nuclear weapons four years earlier, but could restart it. [ Hermit : The reason "its program" is so vague is because, as explained above, the supposed "nuclear weapons work" was in fact the development of a nuclear enrichment process. In my opinion and that of numerous physicists (including the vast majority of the FAS, this conflation is deliberate).]

Tehran has refused to comply with three U.N. Security Council resolutions demanding that it suspend the program while the U.N. International Atomic Energy Agency completes an investigation and institutes strict safeguards to ensure the project isn't being used for weapons. [ Of course, Iran says, arguably correctly, that it is ignoring the sanctions because the sanctions are manifestly illegal. But  where have we heard an outpouring of lies like this litany before? Ah yes. Iraq proved that requiring somebody to prove a negative can, if combined with sufficient propaganda and outright lies, serve as a pretext to war. ]

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Re: IAEA Again Verifies Iranian Compliance-Neo-crazy Media Sycophants Drum for W
« Reply #5 on: 2008-03-21 20:10:30 »
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The persistence of this dangerous bullshitty incompetance . . . after seven plus years there is no evidence of a learning curve in this administration. Indeed I don't think they want to learn, because this stupid-lying trick seems to "work" in that it gets their agenda done however at the danger, expense, and potential death of every other citizen who don't happen to be a member of their crime syndicate,  and even more non-citizens. The only perverse satisfaction one could get in engineering a disasterous civilization collapse like this, would have to be the satisfaction that we are going to take down the rest of the world with us. I know that the rest of the world will get on with their lives and rebuild soon enough, but I'd reckon that for a while there will be no place in the world to hide from the consequences of our collapse. Well, possibly Iceland, since they are energy independent on geothermal energy, but I still doubt it. The displaced and marauding masses of humanity will get there soon enough. I think the only thing that can put a stop to Bush's determination to bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb-bomb-Iran, before he leaves office would be a pending impeachment (my apologies to Barbara Ann).
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Re: IAEA Again Verifies Iranian Compliance-Neo-crazy Media Sycophants Drum for W
« Reply #6 on: 2008-04-12 15:24:08 »
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King George and Iran's Inalienable Rights

[ Hermit : Yet another insight filled article by Gordon Prather. Well worth reading and thinking about, as he dissects the propaganda against Iran's nuclear efforts - which are now being woven into a new rabble rousing narrative including Iran's "covert missile development program". This is an area where the US is especially sensitive, as was shown by its insistence, backed by massive threats, that South Africa absolutely demolish their highly successful rocket program and suppress all results achieved by it, prior to the handover to the ANC. It is further shown by their seriously threatening response to the far less successful North Korean program and the highly deceptive and hysterical US reaction (the US pretended to be taken by surprise despite the Chinese having notified them that the test would be performed) to the development by the Chinese of a satellite shoot down capability - which was of course more challenging than the more recent US demonstration, as the Chinese satellite was still in high-orbit where the satellite the US shot down had already decelerated. The concern is undoubtedly grounded as major component of current US tactics are dependent on the availability of satellite observation, communication and navigation capability, nonetheless, the US having actively blocked treaties preventing the militarization of space for over 3 decades, there is no legal impediment to nations proceeding with this. Not even when the nation is Iran. Particularly when Israel continues to place satellites in orbits over Iran. Even if it were illegal for a nation to experiment with rocketry, it would not affect their rights under the NPT unless the programs were invalidly commingled. Which of course, US propaganda aside, Iran has not done. ]

Source: Antiwar
Authors: Gordon Prather
Dated: 2008-04-12

Physicist James Gordon Prather has served as a policy implementing official for national security-related technical matters in the Federal Energy Agency, the Energy Research and Development Administration, the Department of Energy, the Office of the Secretary of Defense and the Department of the Army. Dr. Prather also served as legislative assistant for national security affairs to U.S. Sen. Henry Bellmon, R-Okla. -- ranking member of the Senate Budget Committee and member of the Senate Energy Committee and Appropriations Committee. Dr. Prather had earlier worked as a nuclear weapons physicist at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in California and Sandia National Laboratory in New Mexico.

Great Zot! After first "Reaffirming its commitment to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons, the need for all States Party to that Treaty to comply fully with all their obligations, and recalling the right of States Party, in conformity with Articles I and II of that Treaty, to develop research, production and use of nuclear energy for peaceful purposes without discrimination", on March 3, 2008, the UN Security Council – allegedly "Acting under Article 41 of Chapter VII of the Charter of the United Nations" – perversely proceeded to "reaffirm" its "decision" of 23 December 2006 that Iran "shall, without further delay, suspend"
    "(a) all enrichment-related and reprocessing activities, including research and development, to be verified by the IAEA; and
    "(b) work on all heavy water-related projects, including the construction of a research reactor moderated by heavy water, also to be verified by the IAEA"
The blatant irrationality boggles the mind. And it's barely conceivable that the reason the mainstream media didn't report on the irrationality of that resolution to you was that their minds got boggled, long ago, early in the reign of King George.

UNSC Resolution 1803 also imposed on Iran new sanctions and the MSM did manage to report that.

However, most of the sanctions were unrelated to Iran's nuclear programs – all of which have long been "verifiably" subject to a Safeguards Agreement with the International Atomic Energy Agency, as required by the NPT. The MSM didn't report that to you, either.

Which brings us to the official reaction – a Note Verbale, dated March 26, 2008 – sent by the Iranians to the IAEA Secretariat, to be forwarded to the Secretary General of the United Nations and all Member States.

It is an absolutely brilliant expose of King George's efforts to not only corrupt the IAEA Board of Governors and UN Security Council, but to undermine the IAEA Statute, the NPT and UN Charter, itself.

In particular, Iran correctly notes that
    "Involvement of the Security Council in the Iranian peaceful nuclear program is in full contravention with the organizational, Statutory and safeguards requirements governing the IAEA practices and procedures. Furthermore, the substantive and procedural legal requirements, that are necessary for engaging the Security Council in the issues raised by the Agency, have been totally ignored in this regard."
In particular –
    "The Security Council has never determined Iran's Nuclear Program as a threat to international peace and security under Article 39 of the UN Charter and, thus, it could not adopt any measures against the Islamic Republic of Iran under Chapter VII of the UN Charter."
Furthermore –
    "The Security Council, as a UN organ created by Member States, is subject to legal requirements, and is obliged to comply with the same international normative rules that the Member States are bound to. The Council shall observe all international norms, in particular the UN Charter and the peremptory norms of international law, in the process of its decision making and in its taking actions. Needless to say that any measure adopted in contradiction to such rules and principles will be void of any legally binding effects."
IAEA Director-General el Baradei declared in his oral report to the IAEA Board of Governors on March 3, 2008 that the "reason" the Iranian IAEA dossier had originally been forwarded to the Security Council "was ambiguities related to its enrichment program in the past" and that "this issue is no longer considered outstanding." Therefore, the Iranians argue, "no pretext or justification remains either for the engagement of the Security Council in this regard or any request for suspension."

Prior to their dossier being forwarded to the Security Council, Iran had voluntarily implemented for more than two and a half years an Additional Protocol to their Safeguards Agreement. el Baradei has just reported that the additional information continues to voluntarily provide is "similar" to that which would be required by a ratified Additional Protocol.

However, Iran is only legally bound to accept and implement the basic Comprehensive Safeguards Agreement. Requiring Iran to implement an Additional Protocol – which recent Security Council Resolutions have done – to which Iran has not formally expressed its consent "contradicts the established principles of international law of treaties."


Now, according to the IAEA Statute, the Director-General and his designated inspectors "shall have access at all times to all places" in an IAEA member state as necessary "to account for [Safeguarded] source and special fissionable materials" and "to determine whether there is compliance with the undertaking against use in furtherance of any military purpose."

When IAEA inspectors do determine that safeguarded materials have been used "in furtherance of any military purpose," they "shall" report such "non-compliance" to the Director-General who "shall" thereupon transmit the report to the Board of Governors.

As the Iranian Note Verbale argues, IAEA inspectors have never made such report to ElBaradei about Iran.

In fact, el Baradei has repeatedly reported to the Board that "all the declared nuclear material in Iran has been accounted for, and therefore such material is not diverted to prohibited activities."

Furthermore, on August 21, 2007, el Baradei had come to an "understanding" with Iran on a "Work Plan" for resolving outstanding "issues" – some of them actually none of IAEA's beeswax, and many of them originally raised in the summer of 2005, by King George's munchkins, based upon "studies" allegedly contained on an stolen laptop computer, said to belong to an Iranian engineer (by then supposedly deceased) tangentially related to the implementation of Iran's Safeguards Agreement.

According to the Iranians, el Baradei has just reported to the IAEA Board that the Work Plan has been "fully implemented and nothing more remains to be done in this regard."

Moreover, Iran has charged that, "by providing false and erroneous information to the IAEA," the United States and three European countries [E3] "have prevented the Agency from fulfilling its real tasks on important issues such as the prevention of actual proliferation, disarmament, and contemplating a mechanism to effectively verify the nuclear activities of the non-parties to the NPT, particularly the Zionist regime that is continuing to develop nuclear weapons in the region."
[ Hermit  : This claim is of course correct as Israel has recently converted extremely quiet German supplied submarines into ballistic and terrain tracking missile platforms carrying multiple independently targetable nuclear warheads - which almost certainly are immune to current anti-missile technology - which the US has kindly provided to Israel - and so, most likely to China and Russia. ]

Iran claims to have initiated in 1974 – the year Iran concluded its IAEA Safeguards Agreement as required by the NPT – the idea of establishing a nuclear weapons-free zone in the Middle East and the UN General Assembly has adopted a supporting resolution every year since then. [ Hermit : This claim is accurate. At the time South Africa was cooperating on nuclear related programs with  Israel as well as Iran under the Shah when this call was made, and it lead to serious discussions with South Africa playing the role of an intermediary between the Israelis, the Iranians and the French; with the Israelis seriously concerned that the call, if implemented, could impact their nascent weaponization programs (The US at the time being perceived (accurately) by Israel as being neutral to negative towards Israeli domination of the Middle East given her demonstrable expansionist tendencies.) This strongly motivated Israel to expand its lobbying and  clandestine programs to change American perceptions - leading ultimately to the fall of the Shah; the switch of American sympathies and the subordination of American interests to those of Israel otherwise known as the status quo. ]

Why hasn't one been established? Well, it seems King George and his predecessors – for some unfathomable reason – keeps vetoing it.
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Re: IAEA Again Verifies Iranian Compliance-Neo-crazy Media Sycophants Drum for W
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Re: IAEA Again Verifies Iranian Compliance-Neo-crazy Media Sycophants Drum for W
« Reply #8 on: 2008-04-13 18:02:21 »
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As the neocons and their stooges did before the US pressed an unnecessary war of aggression on Afghanistan, and again before the US pressed an unnecessary and illegal war on Iraq, in both cases ignoring the evidence plain to anyone looking at the situation objectively, and getting everything that they possibly could wrong, our very own neoconned neotroll continues to vomit forth irrelevancies, vicious parodies of reality and parrots the propaganda of the global village idiot and company, proving once again that there are people who are even less intellectually endowed than Bush.

It is perhaps worth once again correcting, for the benefit of others, the unstated misassumptions that seem to underly much of the propagana Joe Dees/Salamantis has spewed here at this, the conclusion of  his descent down the slippery slopes to inanity.

The first of the "big lies" consists of the indisputable fact that legally and actually we are no longer fighting an illegal war in Iraq. instead we are suffering the consequences of of our brutally aggressive and highly illegal war. The ongoing losses are being caused by our ongoing occupation of Iraq in support of the pro-Iranian puppet government we have installed there, the unpopularity and utter incompetence of which exceeds even the Cheney-Bush maladministration. It would be a truism to state that an occupation cannot be won. As the Nazis discovered before us, and the US is rediscovering now, even when you are a looter on a grand scale, occupations only have costs no matter how many people you kill in the process. The same factors, by and large, are writ large in Afghanistan; only the US has managed to involve most of of NATO in the ongoing imbroglio and consequent attrition in support of our communist puppet  government and "the President of Kabul."

Now let us consider a second of the "big lies" cluttering our neotwit's perspective. If a "successful" 100 day war could produce the efficiently murderous Christian extremists (why are they not called Christianofascists?), Timothy McVeigh and his friends (a number of whom were arguably not identified), how many McVeighs can an unsuccessful 5 year - or hundred year - occupation produce?

it is true that the number of non-Americans deciding they hate the policies and the impact of the policies of the USA sufficiently to risk, or indeed, to simply sacrifice, their lives, to persuading the US to change them, is soaring; shown by the fact that the last number I recall seeing from the NSA stated that terrorism had increased over 26 times since the unwinable Bush "war on terrorism" debacle began, even as the value of the dollar decreased by two thirds. It is also true that our ongoing occupations and associated brutalities are not making us any friends, but are instead earning us enemies who unfortunately can't tell the difference between terrified wannabee warrior fuckwits like Dees/Salamantis and ordinary, decent people (who largely object to the Bush idiocies and attrocities). Still, I think that the damage done by poor Muslims whose future the US has made meaningless is likely to be far less than the damage which can and probably will be caused by the gang members and criminals currently doing most of the fighting for the US, and who are going to discover that their misguided efforts are going to be rewarded with poverty and homelessness (or possibly by what is worse, positions in the police forces of the USA where it seems as if no officer is worth promoting if he doesn't already suffer from PTSD). And what a dangerous turn for society that will be. When our traumatized, brutalized thugs come home to bash American= instead of "rag"-heads. This makes it faily obvious that the poor terrified creatures so well represented by Dees/Salamantis are worrying about the wrong things entirely. This certainly appears a much more cogent and imminent concern than the vague, nonexistent "Islamofascist" threats which have been used to attempt to justify the denigration and sacrifice of the constitution and traditional freedoms Americans once thought they enjoyed.

Another "big lie" underpinning and poisoning the Neocon weltanschuung is the fact that the articles Joe Dees/Salamantis  pastes in torrid floods engage in both supressio verii (lies of omission) as well as suggestio falsii (lies of commission). Sometimes, as possibly here, the suppression of truths is more significant to the asserted lies as without the framework, it is difficult to address exactly how the distortions are established..Some examples then. The attempted suppression of the fact that Iran has a right to process Uranium, guaranteed to parties to the non-nuclear armed states in the non-proliferation treaty, to not only be allowed to use, but to also call upon the nuclear armed states for assistance in developing nuclear power for peaceful purposes. A right which the US has repeatedly and assiduously attempted to deny Iran - which in turn completely explains why Iran has worked "clandestinely" on perfectly legal programs. Programs that Israel, and its enabler and co-conspirator the USA now assert are illegal; despite the fact that the body tasked with the implementation of the NPT, the IAEI has not said anything of the sort. Indeed they have repeatedly said that Iran is going beyond its treaty obligation to demonstrate that their nuclear programs are intended for non-military purposes. Difficult to bypass these facts so down the memory hole they go.  Another topic which is not mentioned by these master propagandists is the obligation of nuclear armed states to reduce and ultimately eliminate their nuclear arsenals in exchange for the non-nuclear states acceding to the treaty. An obligation that does not apply to the non-treaty member Israel, but an obligation that the US has, particularly under the Cheney-Bush maladministration, exercised in the breach more than in the honoring. Then of course there is the fact that, contrary to its treaty obligations, the US was and is still the world's greatest proliferator. Whether through intent, ineptitude or plain stupidity is difficult to assess. The point is that according to competent articles by competent people, such as those above, or at the FAS - the kind of fact-based articles that Dees/Salamantis seems too stupid or stupefied to comprehend, qualitatively worlds apart from the oped screeds he uses to flood the BBS with, the US has been and is in breach of its obligations under the NPT  - and Iran is not. Anybody wishing to validate this need only study the above thread for a few minutes.

Which proves once again that our neoconehead troll is only capable of acting as a memedroid, which is why writing rebuttals is a pointless waste of time. He doesn't wish to persuade and cannot support his drooling inanities. Which might account for a great deal of his abysmal reputation, but he seems to be too stupid and, or, too bigoted to comprehend that either.

A neocon memedroid Joe Dees,
Once could reason with relative ease,
But as senility drew near,
He was overcome by fear
And the knocking you hear is his knees.

There is something wrong with his head,
He fears "terrorists" under his bed.
Now his reputation,
And the Earth's population,
Would be better off were he dead.

At least that way he would not,
Claim that it is cold when its hot,
Or hot when its cold,
For his lies are all old,
As are his floods of neocon rot.



Copyright: Hermit 2008
License: Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License.
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Re: IAEA Again Verifies Iranian Compliance-Neo-crazy Media Sycophants Drum for W
« Reply #10 on: 2008-04-14 05:50:48 »
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American Hegemony Is Not Guaranteed

[Hermit : Time for the Global Village Idiot to be forced to take his own advice ]

These people are trying to shake the will of the Iraqi citizens, and they want us to leave...I think the world would be better off if we did leave...
[ George W. Bush (on Iraqi Insurgency) President's Veteran's Day Speech (2005-11-11) ]


Source: Antiwar.com
Authors: Paul Craig Roberts
Dated: 2008-04-14

Paul Craig Roberts wrote the Kemp-Roth bill and was assistant secretary of the Treasury in the Reagan administration. He was associate editor of the Wall Street Journal editorial page and contributing editor of National Review. He is author or co-author of eight books, including The Supply-Side Revolution (Harvard University Press). He has held numerous academic appointments, including the William E. Simon chair in political economy, Center for Strategic and International Studies, Georgetown University, and senior research fellow, Hoover Institution, Stanford University. He has contributed to numerous scholarly journals and testified before Congress on 30 occasions. He has been awarded the U.S. Treasury's Meritorious Service Award and the French Legion of Honor. He was a reviewer for the Journal of Political Economy under editor Robert Mundell.

Exactly as the British press predicted, last week's congressional testimony by Gen. David Petraeus and Green Zone administrator Ryan Crocker set the propaganda stage for a Bush regime attack on Iran. On April 10 Robert H. Reid of AP News reported: "The top U.S. commander has shifted the focus from al-Qaeda to Iranian-backed 'special groups' as the main threat. … The shift was articulated by Gen. Petraeus who told Congress that 'unchecked, the special groups pose the greatest long-term threat to the viability of a democratic Iraq.'"

According to the neocon propaganda, the "special groups" (have you ever heard of them before?) are breakaway elements of Sadr's militia.

Nonsensical on its face, the Petraeus/Crocker testimony is just another mask in the macabre theater of lies that the Bush regime has told in order to justify its wars of naked aggression against Muslims.
    Fact #1: Sadr is not allied with Iran. He speaks with an Iraqi voice and has his militia under orders to stand down from conflict. The Badr militia is the Shi'ite militia that is allied with Iran. Why did the U.S. and its Iraqi puppet Maliki attack Sadr's militia and not the Badr militia or the breakaway elements of Sadr's militia that allegedly now operate as gangs?

    Fact #2: The Shi'ite militias and the Sunni insurgents are armed with weapons available from the unsecured weapon stockpiles of Saddam Hussein's army. If Iran were arming Iraqis, the Iraqi insurgents and militias would have armor-piercing rocket-propelled grenades and surface-to-air missiles. These two weapons would neutralize the U.S. advantage by enabling Iraqis to destroy U.S. helicopter gunships, aircraft, and tanks. The Iraqis cannot mass their forces as they have no weapons against U.S. air power. To destroy U.S. tanks, Iraqis have to guess the roads U.S. vehicles will travel and bury bombs constructed from artillery shells. The inability to directly attack armor and to defend against air attack denies offensive capability to Iraqis.
If the Iranians desired to arm Iraqis, they obviously would provide these two weapons that would change the course of the war.

Just as the Bush regime lied to Americans and the UN about why Iraq was attacked, hiding the real agenda behind false claims that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction and connections to al-Qaeda, the Bush regime is now lying about why it needs to attack Iran. Could anyone possibly believe that Iran is so desirous of having its beautiful country bombed and its nuclear energy program destroyed that Iran would invite an attack by fighting a "proxy war" against the U.S. in Iraq?

That the Bush regime would tell such a blatant lie shows that the regime has no respect for the intelligence of the American public and no respect for the integrity of the U.S. media.

And why should it? The public and media have fallen for every lie the Bush regime has told.


The moral hypocrisy of U.S. politicians is unrivaled. McCain says that if he were president he would not attend the opening ceremony of the Beijing Olympics because China has killed and injured 100 Tibetans who protested Tibet's occupation by China. Meanwhile the Iraqi toll of the American occupation is one million dead and four million displaced. That comes to 20 percent of the Iraqi population. At what point does the U.S. occupation of Iraq graduate from a war crime to genocide?

Not to be outdone by McCain's hypocrisy, Bush declared: "The message to the Iranians is: we will bring you to justice if you continue to try to infiltrate, send your agents or send surrogates to bring harm to our troops and/or the Iraqi citizens." [ Here, once again, there is an evidence bereft assertion that what Bush asserts, is in fact happening. whereas the reality appears to be that the US Government and its intellectually challenged and ethically bankrupt president is simply lying again. ]

Consider our "Christian" president's position: It is perfectly appropriate for the U.S. to bomb and to invade countries and to send its agents and surrogates to harm Iraqis, Afghans, Somalis, Serbians, and whomever, but resistance to American aggression is the mark of terrorism, and any country that aids America's victims is at war with America.

The three-week "cakewalk" war that would be paid for by Iraqi oil revenues is now into its sixth year. According to Nobel economist Joseph Stiglitz, the cost of the war to Americans is between three and five trillion dollars. Five trillion dollars equals the entire U.S. personal and corporate income tax revenues for two years.

Of what benefit is this enormous expenditure to America? The price of oil and gasoline in U.S. dollars has tripled, the price of gold has quadrupled, and the dollar has declined sharply against other currencies. The national debt has rapidly mounted. America's reputation is in tatters.

The Bush regime's coming attack on Iran will widen the war dramatically and escalate the costs.

Not content with war with Iran, Republican presidential candidate John McCain in a speech written for him by neocon warmonger Robert Kagan promises to confront both Russia and China.

Three questions present themselves:
    (1) Will our foreign creditors – principally China, Japan, and Saudi Arabia – finance a third monstrous Bush regime war crime?
    (2) Will Iran sit on its hands and wait on the American bombs to fall?
    (3) Will Russia and China passively wait to be confronted by the warmonger McCain?
Should a country that is overextended in Iraq and Afghanistan be preparing to attack yet a third country, while threatening to interfere in the affairs of two large nuclear powers? What sort of political leadership seeks to initiate conflict in so many unpromising directions?

With Iran, Russia, China, and North Korea threatened by American hegemonic belligerence, it is not difficult to imagine a scenario that would terminate all pretense of American power: For example, instead of waiting to be attacked, Iran uses its Chinese and Russian anti-ship missiles, against which the U.S. reportedly has poor means of defense, and sinks every ship in the American carrier strike forces that have been foolishly massed in the Persian Gulf, simultaneously taking out the Saudi oil fields and the Green Zone in Baghdad, the headquarters of the U.S. occupation. Shi'ite militias break the U.S. supply lines from Kuwait, and Iranian troops destroy the dispersed U.S. forces in Iraq before they can be concentrated to battle strength.

Simultaneously, North Korea crosses the demilitarized zone and takes South Korea, China seizes Taiwan and dumps a trillion dollars of U.S. Treasury bonds on the market. Russia goes on full nuclear alert and cuts off all natural gas to Europe.

What would the Bush regime do? Wet its pants? Push the button and end the world? [ The downside to this scenario is that I think that Bush would welcome that opportunity - and that the creatures around him would pray together with him before he does it. And some people worry about the altogether less threatening, much nicer and infinitely smarter Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. ]

If America really had dangerous enemies, surely the enemies would collude to take advantage of a dramatically overextended delusional regime that, blinded by its own arrogance and hubris, issues gratuitous threats and lives by Mao's doctrine that power comes out of the barrel of a gun.

There are other less dramatic scenarios. Why does the U.S. assume that only it can initiate aggression, boycotts, freezes on financial assets of other countries, and bans on foreign banks from participation in the international banking system? If the rest of the world were to tire of American aggression or to develop a moral conscience, it would be easy to organize a boycott of America and to ban U.S. banks from participating in the international banking system. Such a boycott would be especially effective at the present time with the balance sheets of U.S. banks impaired by subprime derivatives and the U.S. government dependent on foreign loans in order to finance its day-to-day activities.

Sooner or later it will occur to other countries that putting up with America is a habit that they don't need to continue.


Does America really need more political leadership that leads in such unpromising directions?
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Re: IAEA Again Verifies Iranian Compliance-Neo-crazy Media Sycophants Drum for W
« Reply #11 on: 2008-04-21 06:51:36 »
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Iran should be "Set Up for an Attack"

[ Before you start, a little light perspective from Patrick Cockburn of CounterPunch: The old war was primarily between the Sunni community -- which contested the American occupation -- and an Iraqi government dominated by the Shia in alliance with the Kurds. That conflict has not ended. But the most important battles likely to be waged in Iraq this year will be within the Shia community. They pit the US-backed Iraqi government against the supporters of the radical cleric Muqtada al-Sadr, who represents the impoverished Shia masses of Iraq. ‘The Shia are the majority in Iraq and the Sadrists are a majority of this majority,’ a former Shia minister told me. ‘They make up 30 to 40 per cent of the total Iraqi population.’ The population of Iraq is 27 million: on this ex-minister’s calculation, up to ten million of them support Muqtada....

Why did the Iraqi army fail? Training a new army has been at the centre of British and American policy for the last four years. ... Well-paid by Iraqi standards, and backed up by US air power, the army was expected to give a better account of itself. Yet, in gun battles in towns and cities across southern Iraq, the army either failed to fight or was driven back by the militiamen. Four days into Maliki’s offensive, the Mehdi Army controlled three-quarters of Basra and half of Baghdad. To prevent a complete rout, American helicopters and attack aircraft started to take an increasing part in the fighting. The isolated British soldiers at Basra airport -- 4,100 were stationed there -- fired their artillery in support of beleaguered Iraqi army units. A curfew in Baghdad caused resentment because people had been taken by surprise by the outbreak and had not, as they usually do when they see a crisis coming, stocked up on food and supplies.

As the Iraqi army began to fail the Americans moved quickly to prop it up. Air controllers to marshal air strikes were sent to Iraqi army units. A team of senior American advisers was sent to Basra. This may explain why Muqtada agreed to a ceasefire. The Mehdi Army had already shown it could fight off the Iraqi army and police... The Americans said nothing because the abortive attack on Basra was, for them, a nightmare. The claim that the surge was the first step in restoring peace to Iraq was exposed as a myth. American military casualties might be down -- but some two thousand Iraqis were killed in March.[/yellow] American politicians ran for cover. While I was in Baghdad in March, Senator John McCain visited, at the same time as Vice-President Dick Cheney. Both expressed confidence that security was improving. McCain happily told CNN that Muqtada’s ‘influence has been on the wane for a long time’. Three weeks later, McCain was denying he had ever said such a thing; what he had said, he insisted, was that ‘he was still a major player and his influence is going to have to be reduced and gradually eliminated.’ Given that Muqtada is the most powerful Shia leader, and that his militiamen had just shown they could defeat the Iraqi army, this would mean that McCain, if elected president, would fight a war with Iraq’s 17 million Shia.

[color=yellow]By this time, American generals and politicians were saying that they had known nothing about Maliki’s disastrous offensive until the last minute -- conveniently forgetting that the Americans had been urging Iraqi prime ministers to attack the Mehdi Army since 2004. It was the failure of Ibrahim al-Jaafari, the previous Iraqi prime minister, to initiate such an attack that turned the Americans against him. Four years ago, Paul Bremer, the US viceroy in Iraq, was demanding that Iraqi ministers refer to the Mehdi Army as ‘Muqtada’s militia’. Bremer called him an Iraqi Hitler in the making and made a disastrous attempt to eliminate him in April 2004, an attempt that was similar in many ways to Maliki’s offensive on Basra last month. Bremer too grossly underestimated Muqtada: his supporters took over most of southern Iraq in a few days
.... ]


The Agenda Behind The Anti-Sadr Agenda

Source: Global Research
Authors: Muriel Mirak-Weissbach
Dated: 2008-04-17
Copyright: GlobalResearch.ca (Refer below)

When Gen. David Petraeus along with U.S. Ambassador to Iraq Ryan Crocker gave their testimony to the Senate on April 9, they did nothing more than to confirm in spades what had been being mooted and duly leaked by the Washington-based press: that the Bush-Cheney Administration had officially endorsed the line that Iran should be set up for attack, on grounds that it--and not any indigenous resistance--were responsible for the mounting death toll among American troops in Iraq

While claiming security had improved, Petraeus said the violence involving the Mahdi Army of Moqtadar al Sadr "highlighted the destructive role Iran has played in funding, training, arming and directing the so-called 'special groups'" which, he added, "pose the greatest long-term threat to the viability of a democratic Iraq." (See Washington Post, April 9, 2008). Petraeus even granted that Syria had cut the alleged flow of fighters into Iraq, only to stress by contrast, that "Iran has fuelled the violence in a particularly damaging way, through its lethal support to the special groups." Finally, Petraeus specified that the "special groups" were run by Iran's Qods force, the Revolutionary Guards recently placed in the category of terrorists. [ Hermit : If you didn't read the perspective piece above, stop and read it now. This entire paragraph is nothing but the report of a deliberate inversion of reality - "the big lie" at work. ]

There was nothing new about the line: Dick Cheney had dispatched Maj. Gen. Kevin Bergner last year to Iraq, with the task of finding a smoking gun, or, better, a couple of improvised explosive devices (IEDs) with "made in Iran" stamped on them. [color=yellow]What was new in the testimony of the top U.S. military and diplomatic officials in the war zone, were the categorical statements, uttered with an air of certainty usually backed up by courtroom evidence, that Iran was the culprit, and the implicit conclusion that Iran must be the target of U.S. aggression. In order to make sure that (as Nixon would have said), the point be perfectly clear, National Security Advisor Stephen Hadley was trotted out to tell an enthusiastic Fox News reporter on April 13, that indeed Iran was the casus belli; Iran is "training Iraqis in Iran who come into Iraq and attack our forces, Iraqi forces, Iraqi civilians." And, therefore, Hadley went on, "We will go after their surrogate operations in Iraq that are killing our forces, killing Iraqi forces." (www.foxnews.com). Although Defense Secretary Robert Gates was saying almost simultaneously that he thought "the chances of us stumbling into a confrontation with Iran are very low," he, too, repeated the mantra that the Iranians were sending weapons into the south of Iraq, etc. etc. President George W. Bush could not be left out of the dramatic build-up, and blessed Petraeus's testimony with an order for a halt in the troop reductions.

Pat Buchanon performed an important service in immediately blowing the whistle on this fraud, and his piece, "General Petraeus Points to War with Iran," has fortunately received wide coverage. (www.buchanonorg, 11.04.2008, globalresearch.ca, 12.04.2008) One would hope that Seymous Hersh would come forth with further ammunition in the fight to prevent an all-too-likely attack against Iran. They are at it again, they are serious, and must be stopped.


The Anti-Shi'ite Surge

But, if war is indeed on the agenda, as Global Research has documented over months, one question to be raised, is: how does the recent "surge" in military actions against the Moqtadar al-Sadr forces, in Basra, Baghdad and numerous other Iraqi cities, fold into the current military-political gameplan? The massive joint U.S.-Iraqi operations at the end of March, against the Mahdi Army, were, militarily speaking, a fiasco. The news reported by AFP on April 14 that the Iraqi government has sacked 1,300 Iraqi troops for not having performed as expected (i.e., for having deserted or joined the enemy) is a not-so-eloquent acknowledgement of this embarrassing fact. And, as has been generally acknowledged by now, it was only due to the diplomatic intervention of Iranian authorities, that the conflict was ended, leading to the decision of al-Sadr to cease hostilities.

Now, however, that ill-conceived offensive has been relaunched in the wake of the performances by the Petraeus-Crocker-Hadley trio, and with a vengeance. Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki told CNN on April 7, that the offensive against al-Mahdi would continue "until a decisive victory is achieved .. a victory that will not allow these people to attack the Green Zone or other areas." To signal the renewed thrust, Riyad al-Nuri, the director of al Sadr's Najaf office, and his brother-in-law, was brutally murdered in the holy city on April 11. Joint U.S.-Iraqi military incursions have continued in Sadr City. Where will this lead? To victory? If so, how does one define victory? If the joint U.S.-Iraqi military operations physically eliminate al-Sadr's forces, it will only be as a result of the deployment of massive brute force as has not yet been used. In this tragic case, the political effect would likely not be the decimation of that political force, but its enhancement. It should not be forgotten that Moqtadar al-Sadr himself comes from a family of martyrs.

One consideration in the minds of the U.S. strategists of the anti-Sadr war, is that they must wipe his organization off the Iraqi political map well before elections take place next October, elections in which his followers could make significant gains, expanding their current 30-seat presence in parliament to a considerable power. The Al-Sadr phenomenon in Iraq is, in this sense, not so different from the Hamas phenomenon in Palestine; both are militant (and military) formations fighting against foreign occupation, while also providing crucial social services to their people, be it schools, clinics, hospitals or the like. It is in this light that one must read the decision by the Iraqi cabinet on April 14 to exclude militias from that vote, i.e. to exclude any political parties that have armed militias. Clearly, this is aimed at al-Sadr. If one were to ask: What about the Badr Brigade, which is the militia of the Shi'ite party, the Islamic Supreme Council of Iraq (ISCI), le d by Abdel-Aziz al-Hakim? one might get the answer: that is no longer to be considered a separate militia, but works as part of the Iraqi military forces.

Intra-Shi'ite Conflict Targets Iran

But there is more to the story. The usual assumption made by U.S. military and political leaders, and shared by too many press outlets, is that the conflict inside Iraq should now be reduced to a fight among rival Shi'ite factions: that the ISCI and al-Sadr group are competing for control over Basra, an oil-rich and strategically situated province; that al-Maliki, whose own Shi'ite party Al Dawa, depends on the support of al-Hakim's faction to survive; that, in sum, the name of the game is intra-Shi'ite conflict.(1)

Yes, the political rivalries among the three main Shi'ite factions in Iraq do exist. To be sure, neither al-Maliki nor al-Hakim would welcome the emergence of a majority force in parliament led by the al-Sadr group. But this is not the salient feature of the situation. Rather, as was shown in the recent, short-lived halt to the operations against al-Sadr, it was Iran which was decisive. The most important factor to be considered, in understanding the current crisis, at least from the inside, is this: Iran has excellent relations with {all three} major Shi'ite factions in Iraq, despite their internal differences. The ISCI, it will be remembered, was given hospitality in Iran, during its years-long exile under the Saddam Hussein regime. Moqtadar al-Sadr enjoys support from Iran. And the greatest foreign support that the al-Maliki government has, is from Tehran.

So, who can be expected to gain from exacerbating the intra-Shi'ite conflict? Most obviously, the U.S. as the occupying power. As qualified Iranian sources have stressed to this author, Iran's power lies in its ability to promote and mediate cooperation among all these factions, as dramatically demonstrated in its mediating the end to the first anti-Sadr offensive at the end of March. The occupying power is seen as intent on utilizing intra-Shi'ite conflict to damage each of these factions, and to hurt Iran.

One generally ignored, but important factor noted by the same Iranian sources, is the factionalized situation {within} the al-Sadr movement. Moqtadar al-Sadr is seen by these sources as a fervently committed fighter, who, however, views the situation from a somewhat narrowly defined local standpoint: he wants to style himself as the leader of the Shia in Iraq, indeed as the national leader--even more national than al-Maliki. His ambitions, according to some, go beyond this; he sees himself as a future leader of the Muslims overall. At the same time, there is a faction within the al-Sadr movement, considered a "sub-group," which is controlled by outside forces, in Saudi Arabia, the Emirates and also the U.S. This sub-group is seen as responsible for provocative actions designed to destabilize Iraq, and therefore welcoming any U.S.-Iraqi joint offensive against al-Sadr. The main reason for this, is that the foreign sponsors of this sub-group, whether Saudi or Emirate or America n, are intent on weakening, discrediting and ultimately replacing al-Maliki as Prime Minister of Iraq, while at the same time undermining the role of al-Hakim. A slaughter against al Sadr's forces could doom the al-Maliki government. To put it simply: these outside influences, who are thinking strategically, are hoping to pit al-Sadr against both al-Hakim and al-Maliki; the al-Sadr forces, who are thinking on a more limited, local level, see themselves as competitors to the other two groupings, for future political leadership in Iraq, and miss the point about the broader strategic picture.

In short, the U.S.'s enthusiastic order to al-Maliki to launch his anti-al-Sadr purge, is actually a ploy to discredit and destroy al-Maliki himself, and prepare for permanent occupation. Vice President Dick Cheney has made no secret of the fact that he would like to replace al-Maliki, whom he has always accused of being too close to the Iranians, with one of his own, like Iyad Allawi, and that might be what is in the offing. Another benefit to discrediting al-Maliki is that the Cheney-Bush crew can further argue that, since al-Maliki and. co. have proven unable to deal with the al-Sadr threat alone, U.S. occupying forces should remain for a longer period of time, if not for the one-hundred years that John McCain is fantasizing about.

Enter Condi Rice

To complete the picture, a couple of other developments should be mentioned. First, Condi Rice's trip to the region. She follows in the footsteps of Cheney, who toured the region to whip up Arab support for, or at least acquiescence to, a military assault on Iran. This had been Cheney's aim during his late 2006 visit, and now he has returned with the same agenda. Rice, then as now, will be following the same script. She will be meeting with the foreign ministers of the Gulf Cooperation Council, plus Egypt and Jordan, the famous "GCC + 2" that she and Cheney have been forging as a Sunni bloc against Iran. Her message will be: prepare for the repercussions of a new assault on Iran. In parallel, the Israelis have been working overtime to heat up tensions in the region, not only against Syria, Hezbollah and Hamas, but also Iran. While National Infrastructures Minister Binyamin Ben-Eliezer threatened to "detsroy the Iranian nation," if it attacked Israel, Israeli Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni told Arab conference attendees in Qatar that their real enemy was not Israel, but Iran.

At the same time, an ominous event occurred on April 12 in Shiraz, when an explosion rocked a mosque during prayers, killing 12 and wounding more than 200. Although initial Iranian reports ruled out sabotage, the causes of the blast were not immediately identified, and, according to latest press reports, Iranian authorities are still "uncertain" about the affair. If, in the end, it turns out to have been a terror attack, the most likely suspects would be found among the Mujahedeen e Qalk (MKO/MEK) terrorist organization that still enjoys U.S. refuge in Iraq, and the Kurdish terrorists in the PKK-allied Pejak. The PKK also enjoys the protection of the U.S. occupying forces in northern Iraq. Perhaps not coincidentally, the Pejak (Party of Free Life of Kurdistan) warned on April 13, that it would "carry out bombings against Iranian forces" inside the country. Perhaps this is what President Bush has in mind, when he makes his periodic appeals to the "Iranian people" to rise up ag ainst their government.
[ Hermit : Another instance of "They are not terrorists if they are our terrorists? ]

NOTE

1. See Robert Dreyfuss, in "The Lessons of Basra," aljazeera.com, April 3, and also Ramzy Baroud, in "Basra battles: Barely half the story," aljazeera.com, April 13.



Disclaimer: The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the Centre for Research on Globalization.

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Re: IAEA Again Verifies Iranian Compliance-Neo-crazy Media Sycophants Drum for W
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Re: IAEA Again Verifies Iranian Compliance-Neo-crazy Media Sycophants Drum for W
« Reply #13 on: 2008-05-12 13:27:53 »
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War With Iran Might Be Closer Than You Think

Source: The American Conservative
Authors: Philip Giraldi
Dated: 2008-05-09

There is considerable speculation and buzz in Washington today suggesting that the National Security Council has agreed in principle to proceed with plans to attack an Iranian al-Qods-run camp that is believed to be training Iraqi militants.  The camp that will be targeted is one of several located near Tehran.  Secretary of Defense Robert Gates was the only senior official urging delay in taking any offensive action.  The decision to go ahead with plans to attack Iran is the direct result of concerns being expressed over the deteriorating situation in Lebanon, where Iranian ally Hezbollah appears to have gained the upper hand against government forces and might be able to dominate the fractious political situation.  The White House contacted the Iranian government directly yesterday through a channel provided by the leadership of the Kurdish region in Iraq, which has traditionally had close ties to Tehran.  The US demanded that Iran admit that it has been interfering in Iraq and also commit itself to taking steps to end the support of various militant groups.  There was also a warning about interfering in Lebanon.  The Iranian government reportedly responded quickly, restating its position that it would not discuss the matter until the US ceases its own meddling employing Iranian dissident groups.  The perceived Iranian intransigence coupled with the Lebanese situation convinced the White House that some sort of unambiguous signal has to be sent to the Iranian leadership, presumably in the form of cruise missiles.  It is to be presumed that the attack will be as “pinpoint” and limited as possible, intended to target only al-Qods and avoid civilian casualties.  The decision to proceed with plans for an attack is not final.  The President will still have to give the order to launch after all preparations are made.  [ Hermit : Of course, relying on Our Dear Leader, who has not yet discovered a bad situation he could not make worse, to exercise restraint is almost certainly a good way to guarantee yet another war - and one which every defense analysis of which I am aware has shown cannot be contained. ]
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Maliki Stalls US Plan to Frame Iran

[ Hermit : Thanks to Maliki (Iran's ally?)  the Bush/Cheney attack on Iran has once again been  deferred, probably till August and beyond. ]

Source: Inter Press Service
Authors: Gareth Porter
Dated: 2008-05-15

Early this month, the George W. Bush administration's plan to create a new crescendo of accusations against Iran for allegedly smuggling arms to Shiite militias in Iraq encountered not just one but two setbacks.

The government of Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki refused to endorse US charges of Iranian involvement in arms smuggling to the Mahdi Army, and a plan to show off a huge collection of Iranian arms captured in and around Karbala had to be called off after it was discovered that none of the arms were of Iranian origin.

The news media's failure to report that the arms captured from Shiite militiamen in Karbala did not include a single Iranian weapon shielded the US military from a much bigger blow to its anti-Iran strategy.

The Bush administration and top Iraq commander Gen. David Petraeus had plotted a sequence of events that would build domestic US political support for a possible strike against Iran over its "meddling" in Iraq and especially its alleged export of arms to Shiite militias.

The plan was keyed to a briefing document to be prepared by Petraeus on the alleged Iranian role in arming and training Shiite militias that would be surfaced publicly after the al-Maliki government had endorsed it and it used to accuse Iran publicly.


Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Adm. Mike Mullen, told reporters on Apr. 25 that Petraeus was preparing a briefing to be given "in the next couple of weeks" that would provide detailed evidence of "just how far Iran is reaching into Iraq to foment instability." The centerpiece of the Petraeus document, completed in late April, was the claim that arms captured in Basra bore 2008 manufacture dates on them.

US officials also planned to display Iranian weapons captured in both Basra and Karbala to reporters. That sequence of media events would fill the airwaves with spectacular news framing Iran as the culprit in Iraq for several days, aimed at breaking down Congressional and public resistance to the idea that Iranian bases supporting the meddling would have to be attacked.


But events in Iraq diverged from the plan. On May 4, after an Iraqi delegation had returned from meetings in Iran, al-Maliki's spokesman, Ali al-Dabbagh, said in a news conference that al-Maliki was forming his own Cabinet committee to investigate the US claims. "We want to find tangible information and not information based on speculation," he said.

Another adviser to al-Maliki, Haider Abadi, told the Los Angeles Times' Alexandra Zavis that Iranian officials had given the delegation evidence disproving the charges. "For us to be impartial, we have to investigate," Abadi said.

Al-Dabbagh made it clear that the government considered the US evidence of Iranian government arms smuggling insufficient. "The proof we have is weapons which are shown to have been made in Iran," al-Dabbagh said in a separate interview with Reuters. "We want to trace back how they reached [Iraq], who is using them, where are they getting it."

Senior US military officials were clearly furious with al-Maliki for backtracking on the issue. "We were blindsided by this," one of them told Zavis.

Then the Bush administration's campaign on Iranian arms encountered another serious problem. The Iraqi commander in Karbala had announced on May 3 that he had captured a large quantity of Iranian arms in and around that city.

Earlier the US military had said that it was up to the Iraqi government to display captured Iranian weapons, but now an Iraqi commander was eager to show off such weapons. Petraeus' staff alerted US media to a major news event in which the captured Iranian arms in Karbala would be displayed and then destroyed.

But when US munitions experts went to Karbala to see the alleged cache of Iranian weapons, they found nothing that they could credibly link to Iran.

The US command had to inform reporters that the event had been canceled, explaining that it had all been a "misunderstanding." In his press briefing May 7, Brig. Gen. Kevin Bergner gave some details of the captured weapons in Karbala but refrained from charging any Iranian role.

The cancellation of the planned display was a significant story, in light of the well-known intention of the US command to convict Iran on the arms smuggling charge. Nevertheless, it went completely unreported in the world's news media.

A report on the Los Angeles Times' Blog "Babylon & Beyond" by Baghdad correspondent Tina Susman was the only small crack in the media blackout. The story was not carried in the Times itself, however.

The real significance of the captured weapons collected in Karbala was not the obvious US political embarrassment over an Iraqi claim of captured Iranian arms that turned out to be false. It was the deeper implication of the arms that were captured.

Karbala is one of Iraq's eight largest cities, and it has long been the focus of major fighting between the Mahdi Army and its Shiite foes. Moqtada al-Sadr declared his ceasefire last August after a major battle there, and fighting had resumed there with the government operation in Basra in March. Thousands of Mahdi Army fighters have fought there over the past year.

The official list of weapons captured in Karbala includes nine mortars, four antiaircraft missiles, 45, RPGs and 800 RPG missiles and 570 roadside explosive devices. The failure to find a single item of Iranian origin among these heavier weapons, despite the deeply entrenched Mahdi Army presence over many months, suggests that the dependence of the Mahdi Army on arms manufactured in Iran is actually quite insignificant.

The Karbala weapons cache also raises new questions about the official US narrative about the Shiite militia's use of explosively formed penetrators (EFPs) as an Iranian phenomenon. Among the captured weapons mentioned by Gen. Jawdat were what he called "150 antitank bombs," as distinguished from ordinary roadside explosive devices.

An "antitank bomb" is a device that is capable of penetrating armor, which has been introduced to the US public as the EFP. The US claim that Iran was behind their growing use in Iraq was the centerpiece of the Bush administration's case for an Iranian "proxy war" against the US in early 2007.

Soon after that, however, senior US military officials conceded that EFPs were in fact being manufactured in Iraq itself, although they insisted that EFPs alleged exported by Iran were superior to the homemade version.

The large cache of EFPs in Karbala which are admitted to be non-Iranian in origin underlines the reality that the Mahdi Army procures its EFPs from a variety of sources.

But for the media blackout of the story, the large EFP discovery in Karbala would have further undermined the credibility of the US military's line on Iran's export of the EFPs to Iraqi fighters.

Apparently understanding the potential political difficulties that the Karbala EFP find could present, Gen. Bergner omitted any reference to them in his otherwise accurate accounting of the Karbala weapons.

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