"Weapons of Mass Deception"


Undeterred by Failure in Iraq, Neocons Push for U.S. Attack on Iran

By Andrew I. Killgore
During the tacit alliance between Iran and Israel from 1972 to 1979, Iran provided oil and lucrative contracts to Israel. In return, Israel—via the United States—provided huge amounts of arms, stoking the ambitions of Muhammad Reza Shah Pahlavi to play a larger role in the region. Nor did Washington object when the shah announced plans to build 10 nuclear power plants.
Iran’s 1979 political cataclysm, however, ushered in a Shi’i Islamist regime. Tehran began to support its fellow Shi’i in Lebanon, particularly the resistance by Hezbollah to Israel’s illegal occupation of south Lebanon. There flowed the Litani River, the waters of which have been coveted by the Zionists since the 1919 peace conference ending World War I.
Israel successfully argued in Washington that Iran’s support of Hezbollah amounted to sponsoring “terrorism.” As a result, Iran was linked to Libya in the 1996 Iran-Libya Sanctions Act (ILSA), for which the American-Israel Public Affairs Committee is largely credited with authorship. ILSA provided for U.S. sanctions against any company spending $20 million on Iran’s or Libya’s oil or gas industry. European companies failed to succumb to U.S. pressure, however, and Iranian aid for Hezbollah continued. Under AIPAC pressure—and without consulting newly inaugurated President George W. Bush—Congress extended ILSA for five years in 2001.
In his 2002 State of the Union address, President Bush linked Iran with Iraq and North Korea in an “axis of Evil.” The 2003 invasion of Iraq followed, based on Saddam Hussain’s alleged possession of “weapons of mass destruction” and ties to al-Qaeda. With over 1,000 American soldiers killed and thousands wounded, that war has gone very sour, and may cost Bush the November election.
Iran is geographically three and a half times bigger than Iraq and three times as populous, so a U.S. ground invasion with an already overtaxed military seems out of the question. That does not rule out air strikes, however. The neocons’ excuse this time is not Iran’s continuing support for Hezbollah, but its alleged plans to produce nuclear weapons. Once again, the purported threat is not against the United States but against Israel, which already has up to 200 nuclear weapons.
But that threat to Israel is what accounts for the support of such neocons/Zionists as Norman Podhoretz, “father of the neocons,” for an attack against Iran. “Like anybody else in the world who is sane,” Podhoretz told the Aug. 22 New York Times, “I am very much worried by Iran gaining nuclear capacity. I am not advocating an invasion of Iran at this moment,” he added, “although I wouldn’t be heartbroken if it happened.”
In October 2003, Iran agreed with Britain, France and Germany to allow unannounced inspections of its nuclear sites by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), in an effort to reassure the world that it did not seek nuclear weapons. On Aug. 22 Assadollah Sabouri, head of Iran’s Atomic Energy Organization, announced that Iran would delay until 2006 the start of its first nuclear power plant. Tehran has contracted with Russia to build an unspecified number of plants, he said, and had agreed to return the spent fuel to Russia.
Iran plans to produce its own fuel, Sabouri stated, but is “many years away” from doing so.
Predictably expressing his doubts was John R. Bolton, U.S. under secretary of state for arms control and a certified neocon said to have gotten his job in order to “keep an eye” on Secretary of State Colin Powell. According to Bolton, “These Iranian assertions give the lie to their contention that their nuclear program is entirely civil and peaceful in purpose.”
With Iraq gone sour and the Europeans (France, Germany, Britain) so deeply involved in Iran’s nuclear program, the chances of avoiding a U.S. attack on Iran look good. But the neocons got us into the disastrous war on Iraq, and have demonstrated that they will go to any lengths to advance Israel’s interests. Like a roomful of Energizer bunnies, they just keep going and going and going…
Andrew I. Killgore is publisher of the Washington Report on Middle East Affairs.

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Milton Frihetsson, 01:49


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