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The Race for Iran

Obama’s New National Security Team Should Be Asked Serious Questions About U.S. Foreign Policy (But Probably Won’t Be)

President Obama’s pending reshuffle of his national security team is an occasion to ask hard questions about American foreign policy.  Most immediately, as Hillary told Al Jazeera’s Inside Story last week, click on video above or to link here, Obama’s nomination of his next Secretary of State—whether that is Susan Rice or someone else—provides an opening to ask pressing questions about the Obama administration’s increasing proclivity for proxy warfare against problematic Middle Eastern governments.  Above all, “Did the United States arm, fund, train, and support—either directly or through our so-called ‘allies’—the very people who killed the U.S. ambassador to Libya and the other Americans who did with him?”  But Obama’s most outspoken GOP critics on the issue—e.g., Senators John McCain and Lindsey Graham—can’t ask those questions, “because [they’re] complicit in this policy.”  (To see Hillary’s segment, go 7:38 into the video above.)

Of course, it remains to be seen whether McCain, Graham, and their Republican colleagues stick to their guns regarding Rice’s acceptability as a nominee for Secretary of State.  But the significance of Obama’s apparent interest in nominating her goes beyond the “who’s up/who’s down” of Washington politics or Obama’s proclivity to declare consequential policy positions without having thought through how to implement themIt raises more fundamental questions about the direction of American foreign policy and grand strategy in Obama’s second term.  As Hillary explains,

Whether you are a conservative or a neoliberal interventionist—I would put Susan Rice in that category—each of these camps supports armed, military intervention by the United States in the internal affairs of other countries.  They do it for slightly different reasons, but the main strategic purpose is for the United States to pursue dominance.

This was the major grand strategy that the United States adopted in the wake of the Cold War, the collapse of the Soviet Union.  Susan Rice has been part of this from the beginning, when she was in the Clinton administration in the early 1990s.  She has been part of this from the get-go.  So has one of the other names mentioned for the Secretary of State or Secretary of Defense position, John Kerry.  He’s also been part of it.  So has Tom Donilon [the current national security advisor].  They’ve all been part of, participated in, agreed to, pushed this idea of the American pursuit of dominance after the collapse of the Soviet Union, rather than balancing—rather than taking states as they are, as they are rising, dealing with them that way, and balancing them together.”

As to the proposition that Obama actually seeks to pull back somewhat from overseas adventurism and has a more “realist” view of the world, Hillary notes that “there’s just no evidence of it, if you look at the record.”  Upon re-election,

“the first thing [Obama] does—and his plan beforehand—is to go to Asia, to go to countries that China cares very deeply about…and to goad China into taking the United States on.  We are putting more troops into Asia, we are pushing the Chinese in ways that make no strategic sense—on issues and in areas that have no real strategic value for the United StatesThe only real reason we’re doing this is to make the Chinese understand that, under President Obama, we will not tolerate them being the power in control to dominate Asia—because we still are the global superpower, with global dominance.  That’s a critical message that Obama is pushing right from the beginning of his new administration.”

It seems unlikely that Obama’s next Secretary of State will be someone inclined toward a fundamental reconsideration of these counter-productive but well-established trends on American strategy.

Likewise, the unexpected departure of General David Petraeus as director of the Central Intelligence Agency gives Obama an opportunity to rethink his approach to the “war on terror”—including the dramatically stepped up resort to drone strikes, with significant “collateral damage” to innocent civilians.  In this regard, Hillary points out that

“General Petraeus has been…what Obama wants and what the liberal interventionists want, which is to make the CIA a corollary of the Defense Department, and to use secret funding—open-ended, unending, unchecked, unaccountable funding—to pursue military objectives:  to use drones, covert war, cyber warfare against other countries without anybody knowing or asking any questions.  The President was very comfortable with that.  Now, with the sudden disappearance of Petraeus, he has the chance to appoint someone who could actually counsel him how to see the world, how to understand profound changes that are going on in the world

I think the chances of that are nil; no one is talking about that seriously.  The big [choice seems to come down to] John Brennan, Obama’s current counterterrorism adviser within the White House, [a strong] champion of drone warfare [and an architect] of our current counterterrorism strategy, which includes killing American citizens with no due process of law.  The big choice is between him and Jane Harman, who was a member of the House of Representatives, on the intelligence committee, and who may be a slightly nicer face to what is essentially the same type of unabashed, unequivocal, and unaccountable use of cyber warfare, drones, and other kinds of secret warfare as a corollary to the Defense Department.”

In other words, it looks like the selection could boil down to a choice between an architect of drone warfare and the extrajudicial killing of American citizens (Brennan) and someone (Harman) who is so close to AIPAC that she was implicated in the FBI’s investigation, during the mid 2000s, see here, here, and here, of Israel’s alleged use of two former AIPAC employees to collect classified information from the U.S. government.

As to what to expect from Obama on foreign policy in his second term, Hillary says that “the evidence, so far, is for more of the same.”  Certainly there is no reason to anticipate much change in Washington’s approach to the Middle East:

“President Obama’s big foreign policy test or challenge came almost immediately [after his re-election] with the Israeli military attack in Gaza.  And immediately, President Obama, through his own words and his surrogates, said that Israel has an absolute right to defend itself.  [This was] something that most of the world (not many Americans here in Washington, but most of the world) looked at as bizarre, from another planet—that Israel had ‘the right to defend itself,’ while it’s lobbing thousands of [munitions] into Gaza and killing, so disproportionately, people there.  But this was his immediate reaction.  And he needs to do that, because the United States continues to see Israel strategically as an asset, not because it makes our relations with the Arab world easier—actually because it makes them harder.  It keeps Arabs down, keeps Muslims down, and allows the United States to continue to pursue dominance, particularly in the Middle East.”

–Flynt Leverett and Hillary Mann Leverett

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461 Responses to “Obama’s New National Security Team Should Be Asked Serious Questions About U.S. Foreign Policy (But Probably Won’t Be)”

  1. Sineva says:

    James Canning says:
    December 4, 2012 at 2:36 pm
    Well thats a surprise and there I was thinking that you thought it was castros fault or irans fault and if only they`d kow towed to the west everything would be great,now you`re saying its the evil influence of the lobbyists,you should try and make up your mind which one you truly believe

  2. James Canning says:

    R S Hack: Israel obviously does not need nukes for purposes of defence. Decades ago, Israel did have to worry about a combined Arab attack that could result in the occupation of Israel, but those days are long gone.

  3. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Richard Silverstein on US Building $100-Million Underground Bunker at Secret Israeli Missile Base
    http://original.antiwar.com/richard-silverstein/2012/12/02/why-is-the-us-building-an-underground-bunker-for-israel/

    He makes a good point: The only possible reason for the construction of this sort of base is war with Iran.

  4. fyi says:

    Neo says:

    December 4, 2012 at 11:58 am

    He cannot, Forgiveness, as a living practice, is not emphasized in Islam – unlike Christianity

    That is one (among many) reason that it is so difficult to admit mistake and move on in the Iranian society.

    You go courting a girl; having lived in US for a long time, you state that you have made many mistakes in your life.

    At that point, your courtship with her is over – “Never admit mistakes.”

  5. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Turkey to keep buying Iran’s gas despite sanctions
    http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/12/03/turkey-iran-gas-idUSL5E8N3GAT20121203

  6. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Was the IAEA lying when they said hackers only accessed one old server?

    Hackers publish more info from UN atomic energy agency’s servers
    :http://www.net-security.org/secworld.php?id=14062

    Anti-Israel hackers invade IAEA networks once more
    :http://freebeacon.com/iaea-incursion/

    It would be fun if the hackers could get internal emails and documents related to the Iran case file. So far, though, they seem to be more concerned about getting the IAEA to demand Israel join the NPT. All I can say is: Good luck with that!

  7. James Canning says:

    Nasser,

    What is your view on events in Myanmar (Burma)? The government made a deal off-the-record with the US et al, and sanctions have been lifted. Economic growth had been considerable.

  8. James Canning says:

    Sineva,

    The list of American allies that admire US policy toward Cuba is very short indeed.
    Similarly, the list of American allies that admire US policy toward Palestine is very short indeed.

    Explanation? CUBA LOBBY; ISRAEL LOBBY.

  9. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Nice recap on how much of the recent Iran “evidence of a nuclear weapons program” is bushwah, starting with the latest, the AP diagram…

    Iran Disinfo Watch: The AP Gets Thrown Another Curveball
    http://www.businessinsider.com/iran-disinfo-watch-the-ap-gets-thrown-another-curveball-2012-12

  10. James Canning says:

    Sineva,

    I have opposed US policies toward Cuba for many decades, and I think they have been arrogant, stupid, and counter-productive. Most European diplomats have contempt for US policy toward Cuba.

    That said, Fidel Castro’s own bad judgement in eoonomic matters helped to produce poverty in Cuba for the great majority of the people.

  11. James Canning says:

    fyi,

    I think you are forgetting that Fidel Castro had many admirers in America, immediately after he overthrew the Batista regime in Cuba.

  12. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Oops…

    Iran: We Captured Another U.S. Drone
    :http://www.wired.com/dangerroom/2012/12/iran-captures-drone/

    Or not?

    U.S. Navy Denies Iran ‘Captured’ Drone
    :http://www.payvand.com/news/12/dec/1031.html

    Is Iran SURE it’s a *US* drone – or maybe an US-MADE *Israeli* drone? Israel can probably launch drones from its subs in the Persian Gulf.

    Or of course, the US is simply lying again…

    Did Iran just down a US drone by ‘spoofing’?
    :http://www.csmonitor.com/World/terrorism-security/2012/1204/Did-Iran-just-down-a-US-drone-by-spoofing-video

  13. James Canning says:

    Nasser,

    Given that gross stupidity and arrogance on the part of Gaddafi set up his own destruction, it seems obvious that one should focus attention on this stupidity and arrogance because this was what enabled the Western military intervention to take place.

  14. James Canning says:

    Nasser,

    True, Saddam Hussein was the victim of duplicitous actions by the US caused by the ISRAEL LOBBY and the neocons, with help from leberal interventionists.

    Saddam’s arrogance and ignorance contributed hugely to his own destruction.

    The conspiracy to set up an illegal invasion of Iraq could not have happened, without the extraordinary stupidity and arrogance of Saddam Hussein. This is key fact to bear in mind.

  15. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Netanyahu: We are watching Syrian chemical weapons closely
    http://www.jpost.com/MiddleEast/Article.aspx?id=294618

    Yup…We’re all on the same page…

  16. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Just to be sure it wasn’t just Obama paranoia…

    NATO warns Syria not to use chemical weapons
    http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/12/04/us-syria-crisis-idUSBRE8AJ1FK20121204

    We all want to be on the same page, right?

  17. Richard Steven Hack says:

    And then there’s this BS excuse for putting in missiles to lay the groundwork for a US/NATO attack on Syria…

    Nato missiles to shield Turkey from Syrian chemical attack
    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/middle-east/nato-missiles-to-shield-turkey-from-syrian-chemical-attack-8376355.html

    Since the request for the missiles came BEFORE reports of Syria ramping up its chemical weapons, let’s say that this is at least “suspect”…

  18. Richard Steven Hack says:

    And then there’s this…which makes hash of the notion that Israel doesn’t care about the Syria crisis…

    Israel Asked Jordan for Approval to Bomb Syrian WMD Sites
    http://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2012/12/israel-asked-jordan-for-approval-to-bomb-syrian-wmd-sites/265818/

    Which of course means bombing SYRIAN MISSILE SITES – the SAME sites Syria might use against Israel in an IRAN war.

    As I’ve said – the target of the Syria crisis is NOT Assad – it’s the missile arsenal.

  19. Richard Steven Hack says:

    So I presume the US is lying about this as well in order to ratchet up the likelihood of war with Syria…

    Exclusive: U.S. Sees Syria Prepping Chemical Weapons for Possible Attack
    :http://www.wired.com/dangerroom/2012/12/syria-chemical-weapons-3/

    And from the government mouthpiece at the New York Times, David Sanger…

    Syria Moves Its Chemical Weapons, and U.S. and Allies Cautiously Take Note
    :http://www.nytimes.com/2012/12/03/world/middleeast/syria-moves-its-chemical-weapons-and-gets-another-warning.html?hp&_r=2&

    My opinion: It’s total bushwah. Almost by definition, as Assad 1) has already clearly stated he would never use chemical weapons, and 2) Assad is not stupid enough to think he can without getting a US/NATO attack as a consequence.

    Even if we assume that the Assad military is under pressure from the insurgents that a collapse of the regime is imminent or at least visible and that Assad as a result is desperate – none of which has been established with any credibility – anyone with any knowledge of chemical weapons knows that isn’t going to change the strategic calculus sufficiently to allow Assad to win if those conditions are true. Chemical weapons simply aren’t that effective on the battlefield, especially an insurgent battlefield.

    So the story almost HAS to be a lie. And then we have to ask: what is the purpose of the lie?

    You know my opinion. And I’m not interested in yours, so talk among yourselves.

  20. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Neo: If I’m not mistaken, Israel has always said they’d give up their (still simultaneously unacknowledged – and how much sense does THAT make?) nukes “for a Middle East wide peace agreement.”

    Since Israel KNOWS it will NEVER get such an agreement, because they KNOW they are NEVER going to do anything that would justify a peace agreement with the Palestinians, and hence the rest of the Middle East, by definition they’re lying.

    So why are we even discussing this?

    That’s why I said: They’re lying. That’s it. End of story.

  21. Richard Steven Hack says:

    All: I’m going to utterly ignore the nonsense about Iran getting nukes – because they aren’t going to. The arguments are absurd, and Iran has made its decision. When they CHANGE that decision, you can call me wrong.

    As for a naval blockade, no one here is going to believe it could happen until it does. So I’m ignoring those pathetic arguments as well.

    It’s pointless to even discuss an Iran war in this forum, so I’m giving that up as well.

    Which leaves me with not much else to discuss here, since I don’t give a damn about whether one group or the other of Iranians are “heroes” since I’m not Iranian.

    Syria is closer to being resolved than Iran, so I’ll concentrate solely on Syria from here out. Once that situation emerges as I’ve outlined, perhaps some people will pay attention to my other arguments. Naaah…never happen…

  22. Neo says:

    M.Ali says:
    November 30, 2012 at 4:38 pm

    “let Israel keep its nukes”.

    I hear you, but I think you are showing a lot of trust in Israel’s commitment to not using them on others. The Americans have done it. And they keep using depleted uranium too. Would be a far safer world to disarm all of them. But then how realistic is this aim? Still, having Israelis subjected to the NPT would not be harmful…

  23. Neo says:

    Richard Steven Hack says:
    November 30, 2012 at 5:17 pm

    “Here’s the shorter version: They’re lying.”

    RSH,

    I wouldn’t trust them further than I could throw them (and that wouldn’t be very far at all!), but have they ever mentioned joining the NPT before? That’s the real question for me, as I do not know.

  24. Neo says:

    Castellio says:
    November 30, 2012 at 5:39 pm

    “I would argue, however, that developing the break-out capacity and other forms of deterrence is a much, much, better choice at this point than trying to put together a handful of self-limiting weapons…I’m not sure we are that far apart.”

    I agree Castellio. And strangely enough, and despite my strong secular convictions, I find myself compelled by the same moral arguments that Khamenei and others – such as one of my personal heroes, Arundhati Roy (are you reading this BiB?!) – make about these weapons. For goodness sakes, these things are pure evil. OK we may need them if there is ever a meteorite about to destroy the planet, but it is simply inconceivable that they are even there ready and aimed at human beings. What form of ‘reason’ can possibly justify their existence?

    But here’s where we may be a little further apart than you state (I almost feel like apologizing for what’s about to follow… ! ):

    Rationality has its limitations, as the US clearly demonstrates. At some stage, we need to give in to emotions and morality for the sake of our survival. I suspect this may indeed be why our instincts override other senses and our ‘reason’ in ‘emergencies’, for we are not intelligent enough to be truly reasonable (complex issues and stress cloud our judgement), but our genes have the hardest and most important evolutionary lessons imprinted onto our instincts and emotions. Simple example: a spoonful of salt tastes absolutely disgusting Because it can kill you. Morality (or a desire for happiness) is imprinted on our genes in order to protect us. It’s cold rationality devoid of morality that has turned the US into its current state; a state that you refer to as ‘irrational’. In fact, it is just short on emotions and morality, as modern Western culture dictates it. So instead of living ‘beautifully’, people are living as economic units in pursuit of material gain. Plunder and loot bring material gain. This can make mass murder of people quite rational for material gain. May our instincts save us from our reason!

  25. Nasser says:

    What a stupid man! He says: “It would trigger a regional nuclear arms race, bringing Egypt, Turkey, and Saudi Arabia into the fold sooner or later.” Boy am I glad he is no longer in Iranian government.

    http://nationalinterest.org/commentary/ten-reasons-iran-doesnt-want-the-bomb-7802

  26. humanist says:

    The complete video on small US dron captured by Iran:

    http://presstv.com/detail/2012/12/04/276071/iran-captures-intruding-us-drone/

  27. humanist says:

    US denies capture of their small drone by Iran but…see for yourself who is telling the truth:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2vfttOf5imE

  28. Neo says:

    Bussed-in Basiji says:
    December 4, 2012 at 5:47 am

    serious question BiB: you see no room for forgiveness in justice?

  29. Neo says:

    PB says:
    November 30, 2012 at 8:51 pm

    PB (persian boy?),

    “Iran’s commitment to the “talks” is a mistake.”

    It does not seem so so far. Iran may have experienced a setback with Syria, but then we gained Iraq, which is strategically far more important than Syria (in cold geopolitical terms) and to a lesser extent, Iran also gained Egypt, Tunisia, Afghanistan etc.

    Your fatalism about Syria and Lebanon is not warranted either. Let’s see how it turns, but I doubt that either country Can fall the other way. In any case, the overall balance is truly against Israel and its latest allies, the Salafists.

    “Iran is looking for a deal that does not exist.” perhaps. But my take is that Iran is successfully building a whole alternative network designed to isolate western financial controls. And it is increasingly working well because other countries want the same. Countries that do not trust the US. There are many of them from the Americas to Japan. I’d include Japan seriously, because they need energy and raw imports more than the west.

    “The uprisings in Bahrain and Saudi Arabia are contained”, but for now. Don’t forget, the mere existence of internal resistance is to Iran’s favour as it makes the foes unstable.

    “Europe no longer needs Iran’s resources”, but so what? Europe and the US constitute a mere 25% of the world’s population and a diminishing share of its oil market. The need for oil is only increasing.

    ‘Western Countries have decided for the world to return to its colonialist past’, and this is a clear indication of their weakness and fading significance, not the other way. Militarism will only accelerate their fall, though I’d agree that the pain of this is much bigger in this scenario rather a a natural decline. All empires fall violently.

    All in all, a picture tells a thousand stories, some of them in contradiction of each other. Don’t swallow their version of what’s going on so easily. In reality, the South and the East are rising, and the West is fading. Iran’s sitting pretty while these changes occur.

  30. kooshy says:

    I would think American generals and their puppet president by now must be very happy they are not sending out men piloted reconnaissance planes to Iran

    Iran captures intruding US drone over Persian Gulf waters
    http://www.presstv.ir/detail/2012/12/04/276071/iran-captures-intruding-us-drone/

  31. kooshy says:

    Ten Reasons Iran Doesn’t Want the Bomb

    Seyed Hossein Mousavian
    |
    December 4, 2012
    http://nationalinterest.org/commentary/ten-reasons-iran-doesnt-want-the-bomb-7802?page=1

  32. fyi says:

    Bussed-in Basiji says:

    December 4, 2012 at 5:47 am

    In the United States, the estimated percentage of innocent prisoners in US Federal Prisons is estimated to be at least 5%.

    Ineterstingly, this is close to the the expected 5% error in clerical data entry.

    Not everyone was guilty – of any crime – and certainly not capital crime.

    Just like the case of “Cultural Revolution” in the Iranian universities; the Iranian Government can appoint 5-man or 7-man committees to review all cases and render a new judgement.

    Where the state has made a mistake, it can apologize and pay the blood-money to the relatives.

    There is no shame in this.

  33. fyi says:

    Bussed-in Basiji says:

    December 4, 2012 at 5:47 am

    In the United States, the estimated percentage of prisoners in US Federal Prisons is estimated to be at least 5%.

    Ineterstingly, this is close to the the 5% error percentage in clerical data entry.

    Not everyone was guilty – of any crime – and certainly not capital crime.

    Just like the case of “Cultural Revolution” in the Iranian universities; the Iranian Government can appoint 5-man or 7-man committees to review all cases and render a new judgement.

    Where the state has made a mistake, it can apologize and pay the blood-money to the relatives.

    There is no shame in this.

  34. fyi says:

    Sineva says:

    December 4, 2012 at 1:24 am

    Cuba was controlled, to a large extent, by US-based criminal syndicates just prior to the Cuban Revolution

    The Revolutionary Government initially made very many progressive changes in Cuba but Americans were out for blood; they wanted to destroy the new regime.

    So, it sought refuge under the Eastern Block umbrella – with all that socialistic clap-trap

    Perhaps they Cuban Government did not have much choice in that but I think their war against small-scale farms and enterprises was aself-inflicted wound that harmed Cubans over 2 generations.

    On the other hand, you can watch for yourself how in the United States, in UK, min France, in Spain and elsewhere small enterprises have been and are being destroyed under the slogan of capitalist efficiency.

  35. Bussed-in Basiji says:

    Previous post censored (don’t know why, didn’t use profanity or insults)
    Revised version:

    humanist,
    Before lecturing us, consider that many of the people executed were traitors and collaborators who had joined a foreign invading army.

    Contrary to what some may think, the inability to deal with traitors and collaborators shows the moral weakness of a society. Getting rid of them shows the moral health- and yes humanism- of a society.

    There is nothing humane about sparring those who have randomly killed innocent people. I know the propaganda you’ve been fed is otherwise, but if you like we can visit with some families of the people these sub-humans killed and you can decide who the real humanists are.

    Please have a look at what such humanist champions as the French did with Nazi collaborators.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Epuration_l%C3%A9gale

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pursuit_of_Nazi_collaborators

    Of course if you are against execution on principle no matter what the offense, then we have no basis of discussion on this matter.

    So you keep saluting those traitors and collaborators and I’ll keep saluting my friends who sacrificed their lives so that my kids and I are not ruled by the personality cult that nourished itself on Saddam’s waste.

    Also you wrote:
    “Some in the same class of scholars have no doubt the 1979 Iranian revolution was Islamicized through effective foreign manipulations. I myself am absolutely sure some of those who were around Khomeini were agents of foreign countries.”

    This statement alone disqualifies you from any sort of rational, historical and fruitful discussion about the Islamic Revolution because it evidences are profound “misunderstanding” of the social situation in Iran at the time of the revolution.

    It might be true that there were foreign agents around the revolutionary leadership- for example the terrorist of the 7 Tir bombing who is known to everyone in Iran. But to agree with a thesis that foreign manipulation “Islamicized” the revolution is clear evidence of profound ignorance on this issue. I’m sorry.

    Neo,
    Like I said don’t waste your time shedding tears for him…live by the sword, die by the sword.

    And for the record, I don’t agree with what they did to him and stated so publicly and openly at the time. But my sorrow for him has limits because of his own previous behavior.

  36. Sineva says:

    James Canning says:
    December 3, 2012 at 1:32 pm
    It was not castro who created the problems cuba faces,it was the united states and its sanctions that caused this,I suppose you think that if castro had just appeased the us and become another batista everything would have been milk and honey for the cubans,most likely cuba would`ve been another haiti desperately poor and corrupt.Cuba has its problems but it also has achieved some incredible things and a lot of cubas problems seemed to be caused by the cut off of soviet aid compounded by us sanctions,you seem to take a perverse delight in blaming the actions of the aggressors on the victims oh if only they`d kow towed they woundn`t be in this situation now,why don`t we try the flip side of that james?,if only the us and it allies would respect the rights of others,the norms of international law and live up to its own proclaimed ideals then maybe it and the rest of the west wouldn`t be in the shape they`re in or having the confrontations with other nations that they are having

  37. Nasser says:

    James Canning,

    It is not me you have to convince and it doesn’t matter what the truth is. What matters is the perception of people of the region. And their perception is this; Gaddhafi was set up, as was Saddam before him. Meaning any agreement with the West is worthless since it will be followed soon with betrayal.

  38. fyi says:

    All:

    Some good news (in addition to those coming rom Spain and Italy)

    One could hope for more soon

    http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2012/12/03/camerons_leap_off_the_fiscal_cliff

  39. fyi says:

    All:

    This is an assessment by Ambassador Pickering that clearly spells out US policy in its last paragraph.

    It is stated clearly that no improvement in relations is to be exected.

    This is consistent with I have been stating in this forum.

    Please note also the road-not-taken:

    “The first possible solution is for America to step out of the way and let Iran
    proceed as it chooses.”

    This was part of the late Lt. Gen. Odom’s policy recommendations in regards to Iran,

    Not much has changed since 2006; US planners are still unwilling to change course.

    The only positive (if one could call it thus) is that the US planners have moved from “War is Cheap,Peace is Expensive” to “War is Expensive but so is Peace.”

  40. Castellio says:

    Fiorangela: I read this and thought it might be interesting for you, at least in passing.

    http://louisproyect.wordpress.com/2012/11/30/columbia-university-president-opposition-to-wwi-is-treason/

  41. futuresilv says:

    China gave pakistan nuke blueprints which are in turn passed to North Korea, Libya and Iran, most likely all with chinese approval.

  42. Neo says:

    Bussed-in Basiji says:
    November 30, 2012 at 2:29 pm

    “Jenabe Hajarian…is mohreye sookhte…”

    I would say he’s more of a mohreye shot-in-the-head rather than ‘sookhte’. No doubt one of your heroes was involved.

  43. James Canning says:

    Nasser,

    It is important to bear in mind that abject stupidity, or arrogance, on the part of Gaddafi brought about the Western military intervention. Gaddafi refused to “keep his trap shut” and refrain from ranting on TV about how he would slaughter all those who joined in the revolt. A number of European diplomats pleaded with Gaddafi to stop ranting on TV.

  44. James Canning says:

    Nasser,

    I think Suzanne Maloney’s reference to “paranoia” on the part of Iran’s leaders goes directly to their concern the US seeks “regime change” rather than an end to Iranian enrichment to 20 percent, etc.

    Clearly, Aipac and many US politicians serving Aipac’s agenda want “regime change” in Iran.

    FYI, on the other hand, claims the US is unable to seek “regime change” and thus Iran has no need to obtain assurances from the US it will not pursue “regime change”.

  45. James Canning says:

    The US was obliged to engage in the Gulf War due in part to astounding blunder by the American ambassador to Iraq, April Glaspie. He chief deputy was L. Paul Bremer III, who is partly responsible for the catastrophe in Iraq after the American invasion in 2003.

  46. James Canning says:

    The astonishing blunder by April Glaspie, in July 1990, can be seen in the transcript of her conversation with Saddam Hussein July 25, 1990. Saddam got a “gut feeling” he could occupy Kuwait and not get evicted by American forces, due to extremely foolish comments made by Glaspie in her meeting with Saddam just a week or so before the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait.

    British journalists were astonished at her foolishness.

    http://whatreallyhappened.com/WRHARTICLES/ARTICLES/april.html

  47. Nasser says:

    James Canning says: December 3, 2012 at 1:31 pm

    “You actually think Iran could “go for nuclear weapons” and not be attacked?”

    - You never answered my question Mr. Canning, how are they going to prevent Iran from acquiring nukes? Robert Gates says an attack cannot prevent Iran from getting nukes.

  48. Castellio says:

    James: You’ll have to clarify the difference between “Syria destroyed as a state” (which you say Cameron doesn’t support) and “the disintegration of Syria as a state, for years to come” (which you say Cameron might support).

  49. James Canning says:

    humanist,

    Do you actually think Britain welcomed the starvation of many Persians during the First World War?

  50. James Canning says:

    fyi,

    If the “disease” Iran will face is a blockade of all oil and gas exports, how will Iran be able to gain strength from this blockade?

    Perhaps you admire the poverty Fidel Castro managed for the great majority of Cubans for many decades.

  51. James Canning says:

    Nasser,

    You actually think Iran could “go for nuclear weapons” and not be attacked? Obama has been fending off Aipac demands that the US pledge to attack Iran if Iran stockpiles a certain amount of 20% U. And you think Obama would accept Iranian enrichment to 90%? Delusional.

  52. James Canning says:

    fyi,

    I doubt many doctors would argue that what does not kill a patient is bound to make that patient stronger. True in some instances, but not true in even more.

  53. James Canning says:

    Castellio,

    You may recall that David Cameron and William Hague sought to improve UK relations with Syria, Iran, Hezbollah and Hamas, when they came into office.

    Iran itself harmed this effort.

  54. James Canning says:

    Castellio,

    David Cameron does not want Syria destroyed as a state. Full stop. One can argue that he may be willing to support measures that risk the disintegration of Syria as a state, for years to come.

  55. James Canning says:

    M. Ali,

    You raise good points to Nasser. If a rogue Pakistani general arranged for the sale of a nuke to a Sunni terrorist group, and the bomb was exploded within Iran, what would Iran do? Attack Dubai?

    Iran benefits from US monitoring of Pakistani nukes.

  56. James Canning says:

    M. Ali,

    A blockade of Iranian oil and gas exports would obviously raise the price, and thus hurt China. But China has been trying for years to get Iran to stop enriching to 20 percent. China’s self-interest calls for Iran to stop enriching to 20.

  57. Nasser says:

    fyi,

    Thank you.

    I will add that any contractual agreement is worthless when there are no means for you to enforce that agreement. And when it comes to nations, the US is so powerful that there is no way for Iran to compel that country to live up to its words. I think this is what Ms. Maloney and others call distrust and paranoia on the part of the Iranians. A while back I posted a presentation by Alexey Pushkov, the chairman of the Committee on Foreign Affairs of Russia’s State Duma who lamented that the Russian sense is that whenever they came to an agreement with the US, the Americans would compel the Russians to hold up to their end of the bargain only to renege on its own promises later. And of course Libya clearly showed the entire world what their words and promises are worth.

    I think one good thing that came out of Libya is that it discredited internationalists and Western oriented people (like Mr. Mousavian) and weakened their position within Iranian government and people with clearer understanding of international realities and US intentions are left in charge.

  58. Nasser says:

    M.Ali,

    Thank you for your comments.

    I have made my views known and you clearly disagree. I won’t comment further on this particular issue with you.

  59. fyi says:

    All:

    Pay special attention to Turkey’s finances:

    http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Middle_East/NL04Ak01.html

    That is the leverage that Axis States are using.

    On the other hand, there is only so much that they can push Turkey; too much and she collapses like Greece and then what would Axis Powers do?

  60. Cyrus_2 says:

    Snake Tale: How Venom Binds U.S., Iran

    Despite Sanctions, Tehran Provides Treatment for Poisonous-Reptile Bites to Coalition Soldiers in Afghanistan

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887323830404578145561189737342.html?mod=WSJ_article_comments#articleTabs%3Dcomments

  61. M. Ali says:

    Hack,

    “I didn’t say that. I said Iran would have to retaliate in some way. The most likely way is closing the Strait to all other oil shipping. What else can Iran do?”

    If it was me, I’d move my shipments via land, and ask other countries to pick up my oil.

    “What part of that is not already true given the existing sanctions? And so what if other countries are “annoyed”? The US annoys countries on a daily basis. What are they going to do about it?”"

    USA does take other countries into consideration no matter what we like to think. It just depends on the cost & benefit. All countries do. Otherwise, the UN would have been dismantled long time ago.

    Thats what geopolitics is. Give and take.

    But I will give you that USA might be willing to stop Iranian ships leaving its port and its possible other countries, such as Russia and China, won’t do anything about it. Although, if it harmed their self-interest, dont you think this will negatively effect the relationship with the west?

    “That’s an interesting question. I suppose the blockade might not be two-way, but only one way. The US stops Iranian vessels leaving, but does not stop vessels going to Iran. If the US has provided China with a waiver on oil sanctions today, I would expect the US to allow Chinese ships to acquire that legal oil in a blockade.

    But maybe not. Again, what is China going to do about it? Start WWIII? I don’t think so. And any other country is even less likely to try to test the US resolve on the issue. I don’t think even China would test the blockade like that. It would complain diplomatically and that’s it. India and Japan would complain. Who else does the US consider important enough to care?”

    I don’t think China would start WW3. I don’t know why some of you that post here things are either peaceful or world war 3 nuclear warfare everyone dies. There are lots of things in between.

    It won’t cause China to start bombing New York. But it might affect China-USA relationship drastically, and it might affect other USA relationships.

    This would not be in USA’s best interest. USA would weigh all options and probably realize that doing this won’t be much to their advantage.

    “The point is that if the US is willing to go to war to “stop Iran from having nukes” and views a blockade as a legitimate means to start that war, they’re not going to care about any other country’s feelings about it. ”

    But they do care,that’s why they are always doing everything behind and infront of the scenes to get other countries involved.

    “We all know the US can put sanction after sanction on Iran for the next ten years and nothing will change except the Iranian economy will suffer. Nothing is going to stop Iran from continuing to defy the US on the nuke issue. So, as I’ve said repeatedly here, either Iran has to blink or the US has to blink. And Iran is not going to blink. So either you assume the US will back off or you assume there will be a war. There is no third alternative.”

    I think for the forseeable future there will be a continious of status quo. USA will try to increase sanctions on Iran while getting maximum countries on board, while Iran will try to resist it.

    There might come a breaking point (either to war or peace), but not in the foreesable future. Thats what I think, of course.I don’t know what the fuck is going on behind the scenes, and as far as I know, there is a plane coming towards Tehran at the moment and will bomb the shit out of me 10 seconds after this post is made.

    “If the US does not blink, then there has to be some greater effort than sanctions to stop Iran from selling its oil. There is only one I can think of: a naval blockade.

    It was Obama who explicitly suggested blockading Iranian petroleum imports during his 2008 campaign. That was back when Iran had insufficient refineries. So we know it was on his mind then.

    A naval blockade was also suggested by the Israeli finance minister a while back. So they would agree to that approach.

    So if a blockade is “off the table” due to your concerns, tell me how the US is going to prevent Iran selling its oil. And if the US can’t do that, how else is the US going to think how to cause Iran enough trouble to force Iran to back down (or regime change)?”

    I think faux blockade as you mention is possible. I will even give you the possibility that they might prevent Iranian ships to leave their own ports (unlikely though). But actually preventing OTHER nations ships to come to Iran is very, very unlikely.

    “Again: either you believe the US is going to back down or you believe there will be war. If you believe the former, well, we’ll see.

    The same applies to a naval blockade. We’ll see.”

    I make no absolute claims. The only thing that will make me certainly believe in something is when it actually occurs, because there are so many variables that I am not smart enough to notice and so many variables that I don’t know about.

  62. M. Ali says:

    Nasser,

    M.Ali,

    “The threats I had outlined threatens the state itself. That is quite a magnitude different than the insecurity of a terrorist attack killing a handful of people. Or the insecurity of being involved in traffic accidents! Empirical evidence however suggests nuclear deterrence works. It has worked for many other countries and it will work for Iran too. ”

    The evidence is not enough, because data is sample is very low and there are many other variables existing. That’s like how some people today say that there have been no war between democratic countries therefore no wars will ever happen with them (even though there have been wars, just not recently).

    First of all, out of 100+ countries, only a few have active nuclear weapons that they themselves.

    Take a country like North Korea. If North Korea didn’t have nukes at the moment, who would attack it? Would South Korea attack it? Would USA attack it? if it suddenly decides to attack South Korea, would its nukes be enough of a deterrant to prevent it being attacked?

    What about Pakistan? If it didn’t have nuclear weapons, you would have attacked it until now? Would it have been Afghanistan? Iran? Would USA deploy a huge army reserve, millions of bombs, and trillions of dollars to take over the country and then hunt down Osama Bin Ladin, or just do what it did at a much less cost?

    Or maybe there would have been a conflict between India & Pakistan? But that already happened in 1999, so it really wasn’t a deterant enough.

    Or China? Who is hoping to invade China but has been kept off by the nukes?

    Or Israel? Oh wait, Israel has been in many wars since it had nukes.

    The truth is there has no between any wars being inflicted on developed countries or strong countries in a long time, whether they had nukes or not. Since 2000, the wars we had were involved with Iraq and African countries.

    In the 90s, we again had bad boy Iraq, African countries, and I think some former USSR countries.

    Opportunity has arisen yet and i don’t think it has to do with 100% with nuclear weapons.

    “You are asking what will happen if they force Iran to act upon its threat. Well I guess then Iran is screwed! (And BTW no one is threatening your precious Dubai.)”

    A deterrant is no use if you can’t use it. So, you are ready to encur possible bombarment, possible complete political isolation, etc, for a bluff?

    (and by the way, Dubai is precious to me only in terms of that large number of Iranians live there (some of them are my family))

    “My war strategy is based on my understanding of human history and human nature. No one has ever called the nuclear bluff.”

    As I mentioned, Israel & India & Pakistan have all been involved in conflicts. The few of the rest, such as China, USA, Russia, I couldn’t imagine then being invaded at the moment anyway. But USA and Russia were involved in many proxy wars.

    “That is because when the costs are so high it is not rational to risk so much. You are asking me to make the assumption that Iran’s enemies are irrational and thus all historical evidence is worthless. That they are willing to gamble over Tel Aviv, Haifa, Abu Dhabi, Riyadh, Jeddah, Kuwait City, Doha. I don’t believe that to be the case.”

    Which of these countries would Iran attack if it was attacked?

  63. Castellio says:

    RHS writes: “Interesting quotes that buttress my arguments that Iran does not need nukes”

    I wonder if it buttresses the cogent arguments of M Ali, Neo, Kooshy, BinB and others as well?

  64. Castellio says:

    “But none of this matters to the instigators of the group. Cameron and Clinton have cobbled this group together for one reason and one reason only — to provide a figleaf of legitimacy for the ramping up of their proxy war against Syria; a war they are still hoping to take all the way to an all out British-French-US bombardment. With the recognition of the SNC by Britain last week — and an announcement yesterday that the USA is also ‘moving towards’ recognition — the final pieces are now being put in place to fight this war to a conclusion — the total destruction of the Syrian state.”

    http://dissidentvoice.org/2012/12/syrian-bloc-figleaf-for-invasion-of-syria/#more-46657

  65. Dan Cooper says:

    AP stands for Absurd Propaganda

    This week in shameful Iran nuclear scare crapoganda:

    By NIMA SHIRAZI

    http://www.wideasleepinamerica.com/

    Graphoganda!, or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love George Jahn’s Embarrassing Nonsense

  66. humanist says:

    Fiorangela

    Re: Your remarks on accusations of ToivoiS

    Are you surprised of hearing IRI executing 1000s of its fellow Iranians? If so there are numerous similar surprises in store for you which in my view have to get discussed only when the time is ripe….just before Iran is fully independent, truly democratic and genuinely progressive.

    1000s? I have seen a way longer list of the names of political prisoners who, in the late 80s, were executed to implement Khomeini’s unique decree of grandest mass murder in the recent history of Iran. A number of these prisoners had served their time and were about to get released. The list I saw were so long, later Ayatollah Montazari in his Memoire claimed were about 30,000. Maybe that number is an exaggeration. I heard that number also in a History Channel video in the series of “Declassified”.

    The story of Iran is sad. About a decade after oil was discovered in Iran, when the country was under the British occupation about half of the population was starved to death. Was that a natural accident? Eight millions were perished. Many Iranian scholars don’t think it was an accident. (Refer to “The Great Famine and Genocide in Persia 1917-1919″ by M.G.Majd)

    Some in the same class of scholars have no doubt the 1979 Iranian revolution was Islamicized through effective foreign manipulations. I myself am absolutely sure some of those who were around Khomeini were agents of foreign countries. Just weeks (not months) after the success of a phenomenally feverish revolution they organized a referendum asking Iranians to pick only one of the two choices: 1) Maintenance of Monarchic system or 2) Creation of an Islamic Republic. No choice of Republic, Federal Republic, People’s Republic etc etc.

    No surprise, three decades later the same orchestra is now playing another localized melody in Egypt.

    The IRI you see now is not the IRI of the 80′s when a tough stubborn, ignorant ,power hungry and canny clergy ruled Iran single handedly, on the basis of medieval dictatorial standards, with absolute uncontested power and quite often disregarding the civil rules of the 20th century.

    The IRI of today is in its 5th phase. Thanks to the “behind the scene” conscientious Iranians, in each phase, the country has immoderately evolved in the right direction. In its first phase it was as the Iranian foreign enemies had designed it to be: a brutal, backward, anti-modern theocratic state that could easily alienate any Iranian who was not Shi’a, causing, down the road, the breakdown of a remarkable multiethnic country.

    After Khomeini’s death, thanks to a few games played smartly by Iranians, the country gradually changed course and it is now on a path to escape free from the chains made by the same familiar old time foreigners.

    You might wonder why so many progressive Iranians are backing IRI, where among these progressives are socialists, atheists, anti-capitalists etc etc. The answer is clear. Now the majority of Iranians prefer IRI but as time goes by the progressives (who fully respect the will of the majority) are bound to gain the upper hand no matter how hard the enemies of Iran (who by the way are also the enemies of entire humanity) try to keep this regime unaltered.

    I know a few Iranian scholars who firmly believe if there were no foreign brutal interventions in Iran, IRI was here no more. About six, seven years ago I read one of them saying something like ”I deeply detest the foreign political puppet masters mainly for two reasons: the first is their brazen direct interference in internal affairs of Iran by installing puppet governments and as importantly I loathe them now because they pretend they are going to destroy Iran forcing the people towards preserving corruptness, backwardness and a medieval ruling system. Tragedy is every year on February 11, I too, willingly, have to march alongside of the others celebrating the Creation of the first Theocratic Republic in the recent history of humanity. ”

    I personally feel some kind of silly aimless pride when I listen to the likes of Marandi, Zarif ….or even Mousavian…any many others…..I am sure 1000s of soles like them are the ones who will never let Iran march further on the dark road of servitude and humiliation…..as a godless wanderer I salute them wholeheartedly…deeply

  67. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Israel to use drones in Azerbaijan for possible Iran strike: report
    http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/world/2012-12/03/c_124034970.htm

    I’m inclined to dismiss that possibility, at least in terms of Israel RELYING on drones in an Iran attack. As an assist, maybe.

    There’s also the question of how Israeli drones could take out even the 300 Shahab-3 missiles Iran is estimated to have, let alone any (fictional) larger number. That makes no sense. Drones could take out some or even many of the estimated 50 or so launchers, but it simply isn’t feasible to take them all out.

    The report is highly dubious in my opinion. Simply more Israeli propaganda.

  68. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Iran stations defense staff at North Korean site
    http://www.jpost.com/IranianThreat/News/Article.aspx?id=294244

  69. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Stephen Walt weighs in on whether an Iran with nukes would change anything.

    The mother of all worst-case assumptions about Iran
    http://walt.foreignpolicy.com/posts/2012/11/30/the_mother_of_all_worst_case_assumptions_about_iran

    Interesting quotes that buttress my arguments that Iran does not need nukes:

    Quotes

    Having sole possession of the bomb hadn’t enabled Truman to simply dictate to Stalin, and getting the bomb didn’t enable Stalin or his successors to blackmail any of their neighbors or key U.S. allies.

    And you might recall that Britain couldn’t get Argentina to give back the Falklands by issuing nuclear threats — even though Argentina had no bomb of its own and no nuclear guarantee — they had to go retake the islands with conventional forces.

    Does Israel’s nuclear arsenal allow it to coerce its neighbors or impose its will on Hezbollah or the Palestinians? No. Israel uses its conventional military superiority to try to do these things, not its nuclear arsenal. Indeed, Israel’s bomb didn’t even prevent Egypt and Syria from attacking it in October 1973, although it did help convince them to limit their aims to regaining the territory they had lost in 1967.

    What about India and Pakistan? India’s “peaceful nuclear explosion” in 1974 didn’t turn it into a global superpower, and its only real effect was to spur Pakistan — which was already an avowed rival — to get one too. And it’s worth noting that there hasn’t been a large-scale war between the two countries since, despite considerable grievances on both sides and occasional skirmishes and other provocations.

    Finally, North Korea is as annoying and weird as it has always been, but getting nuclear weapons didn’t transform it from an economic basket case into a mighty regional power and didn’t make it more inclined to misbehave. In fact, what is most remarkable about North Korea’s nuclear program is how little impact it has had on its neighbors. States like Japan and South Korea could go nuclear very quickly if they wanted to, but neither has done so in the six years since North Korea’s first nuclear test.

    In short, both theory and history teach us that getting a nuclear weapon has less impact on a country’s power and influence than many believe, and the slow spread of nuclear weapons has only modest effects on global and regional politics. Nuclear weapons are good for deterring direct attacks on one’s homeland, and they induce greater caution in the minds of national leaders of all kinds. What they don’t do is turn weak states into great powers, they are useless as tools of blackmail, and they cost a lot of money. They also lead other states to worry more about one’s intentions and to band together for self-protection. For these reasons, most potential nuclear states have concluded that getting the bomb isn’t worth it.

    End Quotes

    Which is exactly why Iran has decided not to get nukes. They’re useless except in the one scenario I’ve outlined: a deterrent against a SIMILARLY ARMED enemy unsupported by a larger power. Which does not apply to Iran. They do not stop conventional military attacks entirely, they do not stop geopolitical problems or provide complete security. A country has to have a large population relative to its neighbors and have a decent conventional military force to have security in its region. And that says nothing about having security against a much larger and more powerful superpower.

  70. Richard Steven Hack says:

    BiBiJon: “George Jahn’s mea culpa is worse than his original sin…”

    I agree. The diplomat who confirmed that the crappy AP diagram is one of the documents cited earlier by the IAEA really demonstrates either incredible incompetence on the part of the IAEA or incredible bias by the IAEA.

    As Kelley said, if the IAEA relies on documents such as this, its credibility is shot.

    The problem is that the damage is done. Most of the people who read the earlier AP release simply won’t follow up on the rebuttals, especially since many of them are in specialty Web sites like this, FAS, etc. And meanwhile the AP and the IAEA are spinning the rebuttals as being insufficient and that is being reported in only a few mainstream media.

    It’s a net loss for the antiwar crowd.

  71. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Nasser: “- Tell the Pakistanis that who can never match up to the Indians; tell the Indians that who can never match up to the Chinese; and tell the Chinese that who can never match up to the Americans. Yet they all somehow manage to deter attacks. I haven’t heard any US official say let’s attack the Chinese since they can only kill maybe 5% of our population while we can destroy their whole country.”

    You’re not understanding the term “comparable”. The US is not going to attack China while China can kill 5% of the US population, regardless of the more extensive damage the US can do to China. The same applies to Pakistan vs India, and Russia vs. the US.

    The issue is whether the damage one country can cause another is sufficient to deter an attack. Iran will NEVER have enough deliverable nukes to threaten the United States – not before the US attacks Iran first to make sure of that. Similarly, Iran will NEVER have enough deliverable nukes to threaten Israel – not before Israel (or the US) attacks Iran first to make sure of that.

    The other difference between the US, Russia and China is the size of the conventional military forces, and also the geopolitical impact. The US is hardly in a position to unilaterally attack either of those countries because 1) it claims to be a country that does not conduct first strikes, and 2) the negative effects of a first strike on a country with massive conventional military forces capable of inflicting major damage on either the US or its allies.

    India is also a country with a declared “no first use” and “credible minimum deterrence” policy.

    The point is that country with a “no first use” policy is not going to use nuclear weapons to attack another country in a first strike due to geopolitical repercussions. And if said country has an enemy with a massive conventional military force, it really doesn’t have much of a choice but to allow that country to develop nukes. This is what happened with the US and Russia, and the US and China, and the US and India, and the US and Pakistan.

    None of that applies to Iran which does NOT have a credible massive conventional military force to deter a US attack.

    In the case of Pakistan vs India, they have come close to nuclear war before. MAD is weakest between those two countries mostly because India is so much bigger than Pakistan and could absorb much more damage than Pakistan can. Both countries have approximately the same number of nukes (70-100), and that number is sufficient to make a credible threat of major damage to each other – which is precisely the situation I have described is the only useful scenario for nuclear weapons.

    It is utter nonsense to suggest that Iran could simply build several dozen nuclear weapons and deliverable warheads and expect either Israel or the US to sit back and ignore that. They don’t even ignore a NON-EXISTENT program! Yet all of you assume this is what the US and Israel would do if Iran were to deliberately start making nukes.

    And Iran can not make nukes in secret. Nuclear weapons programs in Russia and China were developed before the technology existed to easily detect them. That no longer holds, especially for a smaller country like Iran. And Iran certainly could not make sufficient numbers to be a credible threat before being detected, even if they withdrew from the NPT.

    Despite comments here to the contrary, North Korea never developed nukes “in secret” – just merely without talking about it until 2006 , which is not the same thing. The CIA was quite aware of North Korea’s efforts as was the IAEA.

    India’s development of nukes was not secret. Neither was Pakistan’s.

    It’s a fantasy notion that Iran either needs or could acquire nukes without being detected and without repercussions.

    “- And as I have repeatedly said Iranian leaders have been explicit that they learned their lesson from Libya.”

    Nonsense. Iranian leaders have said NOTHING about changing their nuke stance regardless of Libya. And even if they did, it would not prevent an attack on Iran.

    There is imply no credible logic whatsoever supporting the notion that Iran either needs, could use, or could even acquire nuclear weapons without negative repercussions.

  72. fyi says:

    Nasser says:

    December 2, 2012 at 1:54 pm

    Indeed!

    Western commentators frequently raised the “Libyan Solution” for Iran for years.

    That Iran was not Libya – as much as Panam is not Frane – clearly irrelevant to them.

    Now Libyan-like Solution for Iran has assumed a truly sinister aspect and will have zero chance (if it ever did anything hiher).

    Mr. Khamenei is indeed correct in persisting in his current course; no US sanctions will be removed in any length of time that could make any difference to Iran (that would take longer than 10 years); Iran might as well continue on her path. – trying to eviscerate those sanctions.

    Furthermore, while there might be some tactical moves on the 20% issue, no final settlement with IAEA is possible; “You cannot prove a negative.”

    As the Americans say: That which does not kill you is bound to make you stronger!”

    There could be secret talks between the United States and Iran at the executive level but there is zero chance of those talks leading anywhere since the United States cannot negogiate with Iran across a braod-issue of strategic concerns for Iran.

    Note that there could even be a US Embassy in Iran – with little strategic relevance; just like the Iranian Embassy in Baghdad while the war continued between Iran and Iraq.

  73. fyi says:

    Nasser says:

    December 2, 2012 at 1:52 pm

    You are correct.

    Almot 16 years ago a Chinese General is reported to have said:

    “Ultimately they (the Americans)care more about Los Angeles that Tai-Pei.”

    This was in reference to war with US over Taiwan and the possibility of using nuclear weapons.

  74. Nasser says:

    Richard Steven Hack says:

    “Nuclear weapons are useful in one and only one scenario: as a threat of mass destruction of civilians and infrastructure upon a enemy. Only if a country can inflict a comparable amount of damage on a nuclear armed enemy are nukes useful. This requires a comparable number of nukes, a comparable delivery system, and no threat of reprisal by any superpower supporting that enemy.”

    - Tell the Pakistanis that who can never match up to the Indians; tell the Indians that who can never match up to the Chinese; and tell the Chinese that who can never match up to the Americans. Yet they all somehow manage to deter attacks. I haven’t heard any US official say let’s attack the Chinese since they can only kill maybe 5% of our population while we can destroy their whole country.

    “In any event, as I’ve repeatedly said, the issue is MOOT because Iran has already made its decision in this regard and the decision is: no nukes.”

    - And as I have repeatedly said Iranian leaders have been explicit that they learned their lesson from Libya.

  75. Nasser says:

    M.Ali,

    “No country has ever been 100% secure, and I don’t believe after thousands of years of insecurity, we have suddenly found the grail to world peace and security.”

    - The threats I had outlined threatens the state itself. That is quite a magnitude different than the insecurity of a terrorist attack killing a handful of people. Or the insecurity of being involved in traffic accidents! Empirical evidence however suggests nuclear deterrence works. It has worked for many other countries and it will work for Iran too.

    “However, let me turn this around and ask you this.
    Lets say Iran goes for nuclear weapons path and no one attacks Iran. Lets have this scenaria. Iran tests its nuclear weapons and announces that it has a bunch of nukes now. No one attacks up to. So far so good. But then, for whatever reason, 4 years after Iran has comfortably had the nukes, for some unrelated grivences (for example, one of Iranian official members fiddles some preteen girls in a pool in Miami who it turns out happens to be daughter of the then president). USA rounds up its allies and flies over Tehran, drops a few bombs, and goes back.
    1) Will Iran responds with nuclear warfare?
    2) Please provide your war strategy for this, i.e. who will they take nuke first?”

    - You are asking what will happen if they force Iran to act upon its threat. Well I guess then Iran is screwed! (And BTW no one is threatening your precious Dubai.)

    - My war strategy is based on my understanding of human history and human nature. No one has ever called the nuclear bluff. That is because when the costs are so high it is not rational to risk so much. You are asking me to make the assumption that Iran’s enemies are irrational and thus all historical evidence is worthless. That they are willing to gamble over Tel Aviv, Haifa, Abu Dhabi, Riyadh, Jeddah, Kuwait City, Doha. I don’t believe that to be the case.

  76. James Canning says:

    ToivoS,

    Thanks. I think the Palestinians benefit when commentators make clear Israel cannot change borders by growing illegal colonies of Jews in the occupied West Bank.

  77. James Canning says:

    PB,

    I think Obama could have succeeded in his effort to reach out toward Iran. He lacked adequate confidence and good advice, partly because he relied too heavily on Dennis Ross.

    Iran itself helped to block Obama’s initiative, with its commencing enrichment to 20%.

  78. James Canning says:

    PB,

    Didn’t many fighters participating in the Libyan upheaval, come from Mali? And didn’t they return, with weapons? Not many fighters in Libya, from Saudi Arabia or Jordan.

    Your apparent concern that Iran could be attacked by the US using nukes, is unnecessary.

    Obama personally favors getting rid of all nukes, in every eountry.

  79. James Canning says:

    fyi,

    Suzanne Maloney of Brookings wrote the following recently: “Economic ressure [on Iran] does not create trust; rather, it has entrenched the rather profound paranoia with current Iranian leadership about American intentions.”

    She thinks Obama cannot make a deal with Khamenei.

  80. James Canning says:

    Karl..,

    The Russians want the US to make a deal with Iran, on the side, to enable a P5+1 deal to be made. Sensible course.

  81. James Canning says:

    R S Hack,

    China has made very ckear it wants Iran to stop enriching uranium to 20 percent and it wants the Persian Gulf kept open for shipping. I expect this position would continue to hold, even if a blockade against Iranian oil and gas exports is put into place.

  82. James Canning says:

    Fiorangela,

    How many pilots did the Iranian air force have, when the Shah was overthrown? How many were killed or driven out of the country? Hundreds?

  83. Persian Gulf says:

    Smith:

    “We have to learn to live with such differences. Trying to prove something what is in some one else’s heart is really the most stupid thing which is one of point I criticize Iranian civilization and the political culture for.”

    I do not believe those who have knowingly targeted the fundamental security of the state should ever be trusted for that state’s affairs. I have clearly differentiated preventing them from having an effect on important decision making and not bothering them for their normal life (that means living in peace; kiss, bos, la la….!). I also didn’t say he is an MEK affiliate. and yes an ex MEK affiliate should not be trusted in the political realm, at least not based on current circumstances. that I am self restrained in going further does not mean you should present this or that person as an angel.

    “But if you preach sacrifice and your own cousin is in import business because your brother is a malijak, then I guess it will not have much effect.”

    I am not sure what is this statement for. and why this is directed at me. unfortunately, I don’t have any cousin in that business, nor do I have any brother actively preserving IR at the moment. I just wish I had as I don’t see anything wrong in it. I am also not sure what you meant by malijak (I know its story, but don’t know the relevance to the topic of our discussion). If you think whoever that had participated in the war should be looked at with contempt, then I have nothing further to tell you.

    frankly, I was somehow positive of you in the beginning, but started to be suspicious. the kind of hate you propagate for the system gives some glimpses of of your background and perhaps affiliation. may be something in line with what Pirouz said. were where you that no one has ever discovered you before? you seem to be suddenly coming out from another planet to rescue Iran from total destruction. anyone can vent nationalistic statements in virtual world. that doesn’t mean anything.

    I told u before, just take it easy and try to channel your high intelligence (which I take your word for it at face value) in better serving Iran, if that is your real motivation.

  84. Fiorangela says:

    Toivo wrote:

    “After torturing and executing thousands of political opponents to the Islamic Republic, and promoting the killers, over the last 4 decades it sounds like the IRI is interested in joining the civilized world.”

    Could you please provide evidence to support the statements, “torturing and executing THOUSANDS …”

    In order to substantiate this claim, I should think you will have to provide at least 500 specific and verified examples of “torture and execution …” Mindful of the fact that Iran endured a war for 8 of the past 40 years, and has been subjected to attacks from outside including spying, assassinations, positioning of subversive elements and propaganda, etc. the context in which these “tortures and executions” were carried out will have to be supplied.

    We wait with eager anticipation.

  85. BiBiJon says:

    George Jahn’s mea culpa is worse than his original sin
    ======================================================

    “The U.N. agency reported on Nov. 8, 2011, that it had obtained diagrams it suspects shows Iran doing studies in nuclear yields, adding: “The application of such studies to anything other than a nuclear explosive is unclear to the agency.” And the senior diplomat on Tuesday confirmed that the graph seen by the AP was indeed one of those cited by the IAEA.”

    Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/world/2012/11/30/purported-iranian-nuke-graph-off-scientifically-but-diplomats-say-iaea-still/#ixzz2DtM6dLSQ

    Recall DG Amano’s claim that the “evidence” supplied by “two member states” were “overall credible.” Well, now George Jahn is reporting that among the” overall credible” pile of crap that the Agency received and showed to IAEA BoG, was this unsigned, undated, untitled, unmarked with security classification, amateurishly produced graph with humongous errors in physics and arithmetic.

    US should be very unhappy with Jahn’s sources, “officials from a country critical of Iran’s atomic program.” Having gone to great lengths not to share the documents with Iran or anybody else for appraisal and verification, now some desperate warmonger goes and spills the beans right in front of a scientific community who notice at a glance the graph is a graft in both senses of the word.

    The explanations from “officials from a country critical of Iran’s atomic program” is on (ridiculousness) par with the graph itself. I.e. well, if you correct the mistakes, then the graph will indeed be correct, duh! Or that, for some inexplicable reason Iranian officialdom understand kilotons better than kilojoules which led to the “scientist” to revise the axis labels incorrectly. Ya, right. While the attribution to an assassinated scientist who cannot answer the charge of sloppiness, may briefly shield the ‘sources’ from further questions, one hopes Dr. Shahriari’s other publications will soon show there’s no way that he would make such reputation-shattering obvious colossal mistake.

    The phrase, “the graph seen by the AP was indeed one of those cited by the IAEA” opens another can of worms. Was the graph deemed the most persuasive, average, or the easiest to understand by lay people among all the other documents cited by IAEA? It sure spells the trouble for the rest of the documents if put in any of those categories. It renders everything else as utterly unpersuasive, overall implausible, or incomprehensible by the warmongering punditocracy.

    Amano is going to have one hell of an interesting meeting at the next BoG.

  86. BiBiJon says:

    ToivoS says:
    December 1, 2012 at 9:34 pm

    re sacking a police chief for the death in custody of a blogger, this isn’t the first time that Iran has taken a dim view of rogue security people.

    e.g. “Iran Charges 12 at Prison Over Death of Protesters”
    http://www.nytimes.com/2009/12/20/world/middleeast/20iran.html

    Your prissy condescension would be more tolerable if you regale us with a list of those who the US and the coalition of the willing have held accountable and forced to pay a price for the last two decades worth of lies, wars, torture, rape, drones, assassinations, etc.

  87. Richard Steven Hack says:

    M.Ali: “Even if they did naval blockade, it won’t cause Iran to attack USA.”

    I didn’t say that. I said Iran would have to retaliate in some way. The most likely way is closing the Strait to all other oil shipping. What else can Iran do?

    “It would annoy countries that were supposed to receive Iranian ships, because that would be USA directly getting involved in their personal shit.”

    What part of that is not already true given the existing sanctions? And so what if other countries are “annoyed”? The US annoys countries on a daily basis. What are they going to do about it?

    “what if China decides to send a ship in Iran’s port instead? Will USA stop Chinese ships?”

    That’s an interesting question. I suppose the blockade might not be two-way, but only one way. The US stops Iranian vessels leaving, but does not stop vessels going to Iran. If the US has provided China with a waiver on oil sanctions today, I would expect the US to allow Chinese ships to acquire that legal oil in a blockade.

    But maybe not. Again, what is China going to do about it? Start WWIII? I don’t think so. And any other country is even less likely to try to test the US resolve on the issue. I don’t think even China would test the blockade like that. It would complain diplomatically and that’s it. India and Japan would complain. Who else does the US consider important enough to care?

    The point is that if the US is willing to go to war to “stop Iran from having nukes” and views a blockade as a legitimate means to start that war, they’re not going to care about any other country’s feelings about it.

    We all know the US can put sanction after sanction on Iran for the next ten years and nothing will change except the Iranian economy will suffer. Nothing is going to stop Iran from continuing to defy the US on the nuke issue. So, as I’ve said repeatedly here, either Iran has to blink or the US has to blink. And Iran is not going to blink. So either you assume the US will back off or you assume there will be a war. There is no third alternative.

    If the US does not blink, then there has to be some greater effort than sanctions to stop Iran from selling its oil. There is only one I can think of: a naval blockade.

    It was Obama who explicitly suggested blockading Iranian petroleum imports during his 2008 campaign. That was back when Iran had insufficient refineries. So we know it was on his mind then.

    A naval blockade was also suggested by the Israeli finance minister a while back. So they would agree to that approach.

    So if a blockade is “off the table” due to your concerns, tell me how the US is going to prevent Iran selling its oil. And if the US can’t do that, how else is the US going to think how to cause Iran enough trouble to force Iran to back down (or regime change)?

    Again: either you believe the US is going to back down or you believe there will be war. If you believe the former, well, we’ll see.

    The same applies to a naval blockade. We’ll see.

  88. Karl.. says:

    US offer bilateral talks with Iran?
    If thats correct, that mean US have changed its policy to the better.

    http://presstv.com/detail/2012/12/01/275629/us-ready-for-bilateral-talks-with-iran/

  89. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Nasser: Let’s examine these threats…

    “- The threat of living under perpetual insecurity.”

    Welcome to the real world. Everyone lives in this state and this is no solution to it as long as your country is weaker than someone else. We in the US tend to believe we’re invulnerable due to our massive military and nuclear weapons, not to mention having two oceans to cross to get to us. Sorry that Iran is in a strategic location with natural resources that other people want to seize but them’s the breaks.

    The problem for you is that there is no describable set of circumstances in which nukes solve that problem.

    “The threat of an attack from multiple fronts; or from a combination of enemies. As in Iran’s enemies decide to gang up on her.”

    One again, welcome to the real world. That said, the odds that Smith’s scenario of Turkey, Pakistan, Iraq, and whoever else all attacking Iran at once is so unlikely as to be dismissable without any further need for discussion.

    Again, the problem for you is that there is no describable set of circumstances in which nukes solve that problem.

    ” Threats to Iran’s territorial integrity. It is hard to conceive physically occupying the entire country but it is certainly possible to seize parts of Iran near vulnerable border regions like Khuzestan and setting up puppet governments there.”

    Ditto.

    “The threat of a nuclear attack on Iranian population centers. I admit the chances of this happening are remote but one has to keep in mind that many of Iran’s neighbors are nuclear armed, Iranians have been repeatedly threatened with nuclear attacks and have been actual victims of WMD attacks.”

    The ONLY neighbor armed with nukes which might conceivable attack Iran is Pakistan. Once again, the odds here are extremely long, and as I’ve said before, if Pakistan were to be taken over by extremists interested in attacking Iran for religious reasons, the odds are they would be taken out by India or the US long before Iran had to worry.

    Again, the problem for you is that there is no describable set of circumstances in which nukes solve that problem.

    “Some of us here have made the argument that the only way to address these threats is with the counter threat of nuclear retaliation.”

    No – what you all have argued is the mere ASSERTION that the possession of nukes constitutes a counter threat. It doesn’t. As long as Iran has fewer nukes and will take longer to develop those nukes than any likely threat, Iran can never have a credible counter threat without subjecting itself to likely attack before it can have such a threat.

    None of you have answered that point. Whereas Iran’s leaders have repeatedly pointed this out.

    Nuclear weapons are a counter to one set of circumstances and one only: where an enemy has sufficient nuclear weapons to be an existential threat to the country interested in nukes and where that country has enough nukes to be an existential threat to its enemy. In short, where a MAD situation can be constructed based on a comparable threat on both sides.

    Nuclear weapons are useful in one and only one scenario: as a threat of mass destruction of civilians and infrastructure upon a enemy. Only if a country can inflict a comparable amount of damage on a nuclear armed enemy are nukes useful. This requires a comparable number of nukes, a comparable delivery system, and no threat of reprisal by any superpower supporting that enemy.

    Iran is not in that position and can never be in that position with regard to its neighbors or regional or superpower threats. Pakistan, India, Israel and the US are far ahead of Iran in nuclear capability and Iran can never catch up. The disparity in nuclear power will forever prevent Iran from achieving a MAD capability with any of its nuclear armed neighbors before it is attacked to prevent such acquisition.

    The ONE TIME that Iran was interested in nukes was precisely that set of circumstances: when Iran thought that Iraq was in pursuit of nuclear weapons. That was a neighbor with demonstrated war intentions against Iran which had a nuclear weapons program. Khamenie authorized a “feasibility study” precisely because despite his belief that nukes were against Muslim law, he also believed that the survival of the Iranian regime overrode that law and that a nuclear-armed Iraq was an existential threat against Iran which he could conceivably counter by Iran’s possession of a comparable number of nukes.

    When that situation was dispersed by the US invasion of Iraq, all Iranian nuclear efforts stopped quite logically and Iran reverted to its clear current position that it does not need, could not use, and therefore has no interest in nuclear weapons.

    The onus is not on those who don’t believe Iran needs nukes to establish how Iran can protect herself from the scenarios you outline. Every country has those threats and most countries don’t concern themselves with having nukes to deal with them.

    The onus is on those who believe Iran needs nukes to establish how the mere possession of a handful of nukes could protect Iran from the scenarios you outline WITHOUT causing Iran more trouble, possibly including instigating precisely those scenarios.

    In any event, as I’ve repeatedly said, the issue is MOOT because Iran has already made its decision in this regard and the decision is: no nukes.

    By the way, Sweden was in precisely this same situation in the 1950′s. It had a robust nuclear weapons development program, reactors, the ability to enrich to HEU levels, the whole nine yards. Then Russia told Sweden that if it developed nukes, Russia would have no choice but to add Sweden to its target list.

    Sweden decided to abandon nuclear weapons because the egoboo of being a nuclear weapons state would not offset the fact that it would never be big enough to be a threat to anyone it might likely be attacked by, i.e., Russia. It was simply out of its league.

    Iran is in the exact same situation. And it is egoboo and nothing else that prompts Iranians to think they need nuclear weapons. Fortunately Iran’s leaders are more thoughtful.

  90. M. Ali says:

    ToivoS,

    “over the last 4 decades it sounds like the IRI is interested in joining the civilized world”

    Which countries are part of this fabled civilized world I keep hearing about?

  91. M. Ali says:

    M.Ali,

    “You don’t believe in absolutes and thus reject the claim that nuclear weapons alone provide Iran with a suitable defense for the threats confronting her. Well then, you must be able to provide an alternative path Iran can take to better secure herself from the most serious threats facing her. ”

    I don’t expect you to think like me. My posts here are just merely my opinions in what I think is valid, all I ask you to understand my point of view, not accept it.

    The no absolute path is essential because no option is then gauranteed to be 100% successful, but what we may assume to be best possible choice out of all.

    I’ve discussed how Iran can secure her in my previous posts. I mentioned a diverse portfolio of options available to Iran, but, obviously, it can be retorted with “that’s not enough, you need nukes”. I don’t think even my portfolio of options will 100% secure Iran (like I don’t think any option does), but given all the pros and cons, I think it is a better choice.

    I will remind you again, these threats include:
    “- The threat of living under perpetual insecurity.”

    There will always be insecurity, always. Even if we will secure, at best, it will be temporary, until an enemy comes that is not deterred by nukes, until a weapon is developed that can be more effectively used, until cyberwarfare is improved to the extend that it cripples Iran’s infrustructure, until man-made virus is purposely spread around in Iran, until the correct movement of bribes and promises leads to an manufactured revolution, etc, etc.

    No country has ever been 100% secure, and I don’t believe after thousands of years of insecurity, we have suddenly found the grail to world peace and security.

    “Now I am not insensitive to your concerns that aerial bombardment can devastate Iran. But if you are bombed once, you can rebuild. But if you are bombed repeatedly, or face the constant threat of such happening, then you can never return to normal life.”

    I think we differ heavily on this point, because I don’t think we get permanent, 100%, guaranteed security out of nukes.
    And I dont think they will attack us when we are on nuke path and suddenly stop once we get it.

    And I think heavy bombartment is not worth the end goal for the moment.

    “The threat of an attack from multiple fronts; or from a combination of enemies. As in Iran’s enemies decide to gang up on her.”

    This will be encouraged, heavily, with Iran being proven to go for Nukes.

    My reply to the rest of your threats would be the same. Nukes is not an absolute for security.

    “You don’t agree with that. You make the counter claim that there are other things Iran can do that would be equally effective as having nuclear weapons. Please then provide a solution that better protects Iran from these five threats. I urge you to go over each of those five threats and come with ways or a single way Iran can address them. I request a serious answer please. You obviously can’t confront nuclear weapons with guerrilla warfare or sleeper cells!”

    I actually think sleeper cells can be very effective. Sleeper cells can directly hurt the enemies in their homeland, rather than attacking their allies, because you can’t reach them. Also, I’m a huge believer in economic powers. Iran needs a portfolio, not one item, that pushes the country towards a better future, which would include, better defense, better technical progress, better economy, strong allies, etc, etc.

    However, let me turn this around and ask you this.
    Lets say Iran goes for nuclear weapons path and no one attacks Iran. Lets have this scenaria. Iran tests its nuclear weapons and announces that it has a bunch of nukes now. No one attacks up to. So far so good. But then, for whatever reason, 4 years after Iran has comfortably had the nukes, for some unrelated grivences (for example, one of Iranian official members fiddles some preteen girls in a pool in Miami who it turns out happens to be daughter of the then president). USA rounds up its allies and flies over Tehran, drops a few bombs, and goes back.

    1) Will Iran respond with nuclear warfare?
    2) Please provide your war strategy for this, i.e. who will they take nuke first?

  92. fyi says:

    All:

    Pay close attention to Ms. Malloney as to why sanctions will not be removed.

    And why the alienation of Axis Powers and Iran will be complete.

    http://www.acus.org/event/time-rethink-policy-toward-iran

  93. fyi says:

    Sakineh Bagoom says:

    December 1, 2012 at 2:37 pm

    Note that asymmetric war can be waged by US or Israel as well.

    If the rumor that there was an attempt at sabotage of the Busherhr reactor turns out to be true then it clearly was an asymmetric attack by either the United States or Israel.

    A truly aggressive escalation – yet again – to the strategic Nowhere.

  94. fyi says:

    ToivoS says:

    December 1, 2012 at 9:34 pm

    A very very very small one at that.

    The behavior of the police and other security agencies of the state is unacceptable.

    As I said before, only in US, Canada, UK, Denmark, Sweden, Norway, and Switzerland a Muslim is secure in his life, property, and his family and nowhere else.

    Truly deplorable for a country that calls herself “Islamic” and dedicated to Just rule afer centuries of tyranny.

  95. fyi says:

    Nasser says:

    December 1, 2012 at 5:59 pm

    In fact, government of Iran did not invest in Khorram-Shahr and Abadan precisely because, in their estimation, war with Iraq could resume again at a future time.

    I am looking forward to the day that there is a bridge connecting Basra with Iran.

    By the way, the late Karim Khan Zand conquered Basra but Iranians could not keep her.

  96. PB says:

    James Canning Said:

    “The shipment of weapons into Mali after the overthrow of Gaddafi was an inintended consequence of the wester military intervention in Libya. Many weapons also have gone to Syria, from Libya.”

    Do you really believe that? I wonder why those arms never end up in Saudi Arabia or Jordan? It is interesting that the so called Arab Spring saw unarmed people fight against their governments in Tunesia, Egypt, Bahrain, and Saudi Arabia. But people were well armed in Libya and Syria Only! Arms flew to the democratic Mali and is now poised to be occupied by French led West Africa army. Funny how Libyan arms flow through the Mediteranian sea and Turkey but they don’t stay in Turkey. Try sending a bullet to Gaza through the Mediteranian sea.

    It is funny how everyone have a thousand excuses as to why Obama can’t make peace here or there, but everyone fail show a single event he actually tried. The only time he ever asked people to back down was when he needed to be re-elected. Obama’s second term will be defined by his war with Iran, not because events will lead us there,, rather because his entire goal has been to provide the “final solution” on Iran.

    The leveretts remain naive. They not once talk of Obama’s nuclear policy which he asked congress for congressional approval in his first few months in office. Everyone have forgotten that Obama’s first legislative victory was WAR ON IRAN. His first victory. His asked for and received legislative approval to be able to use nuclear weapon on Iran, and he asked that by name, asking for an exception to hit Iran even though the legislation clearly acknowledges Iran will be the only nation in the planet the US will target who does not have such weapons. The legislation allows the President to Nuke Iran, and only Iran as specifically named, without congressional approval. All other nations who don’t possess such weapons are required by Congress for the President to seek approval, except Iran, since Obama took office. Combine it with Obama’s effort to unit the allies to sanction Iran from the very first month he took office, a clear picture of his policy emerges. There is no deal, never been. Obama walked out of the Turkey/Brazil deal and blamed Iran.

  97. Nasser says:

    ExposingNeoConWarmongeringStooges says:

    “Iran has been producing C-802′s for a long time. And now it has produced a substantially upgraded version of a missile which rendered a supposedly sophisticated Israeli vessel non functional with one hit which required that it be towed back to port.”

    - A minor point, but the INS Hanit wasn’t hit by a C-802 variant (a pretty big missile) but a much smaller missile. The Chinese claim that it was probably hit with the equivalent of this:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/TL-10

    Your larger point however that surface vessels remain vulnerable to anti ship missiles and their defenses can be overwhelmed with saturation strategy is true of course. But Iran certainly missed a big opportunity by not buying more Kilos when they had the chance.

  98. Rehmat says:

    Pat. Buchanan: ‘Israel is greater threat to US than Iran’

    http://rehmat1.com/2012/12/02/pat-buchanan-israel-is-greater-threat-to-us-than-iran/

  99. ToivoS says:

    Here is a positive development in Iran:
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/dec/01/iran-police-sacked-blogger-death

    A police official has been fired for torturing an Iranian dissident to death. After torturing and executing thousands of political opponents to the Islamic Republic, and promoting the killers, over the last 4 decades it sounds like the IRI is interested in joining the civilized world. I hope this is a real change.

  100. Castellio says:

    Hillary: I’ve listened to your segment a few times now. You continue to speak very clearly, and aren’t intimidated by those who take positions so different than yours. Your integrity in front of the camera is, unfortunately, all too unique: I wish you the very best.

  101. clint says:

    Regarding that faked graph that AP circulated, there is an interesting discussion going on over at Arms Control Wonk:

    http://lewis.armscontrolwonk.com/archive/5915/iran-immunity-and-diagrams

  102. ToivoS says:

    James Canning says:
    December 1, 2012 at 1:27 pm
    “Why would the existence of illegal colonies of Jewish settlers change the borders of Palestine? ”

    Did I say that? Don’t think so. It is true that since 1967 it has been the policy of Israel to use illegal colonies to change the borders. This was called “creating facts on the ground” by Sharon. They reason that once these facts are established, they will determine future borders. Those of us who support Palestinian rights have resisted this policy completely. It remains to be seen if Israel’s tactics will prove successful.

  103. Nasser says:

    M.Ali,

    You don’t believe in absolutes and thus reject the claim that nuclear weapons alone provide Iran with a suitable defense for the threats confronting her. Well then, you must be able to provide an alternative path Iran can take to better secure herself from the most serious threats facing her.

    I will remind you again, these threats include:
    - The threat of living under perpetual insecurity. Now I am not insensitive to your concerns that aerial bombardment can devastate Iran. But if you are bombed once, you can rebuild. But if you are bombed repeatedly, or face the constant threat of such happening, then you can never return to normal life.
    - The threat of an attack from multiple fronts; or from a combination of enemies. As in Iran’s enemies decide to gang up on her.
    - Threats to Iran’s territorial integrity. It is hard to conceive physically occupying the entire country but it is certainly possible to seize parts of Iran near vulnerable border regions like Khuzestan and setting up puppet governments there.
    - The threat of a nuclear attack on Iranian population centers. I admit the chances of this happening are remote but one has to keep in mind that many of Iran’s neighbors are nuclear armed, Iranians have been repeatedly threatened with nuclear attacks and have been actual victims of WMD attacks.
    - And what about the more likely scenario of nuclear blackmail?

    Some of us here have made the argument that the only way to address these threats is with the counter threat of nuclear retaliation. I went even further and detailed what Iran’s deterrence posture should be.

    You don’t agree with that. You make the counter claim that there are other things Iran can do that would be equally effective as having nuclear weapons. Please then provide a solution that better protects Iran from these five threats. I urge you to go over each of those five threats and come with ways or a single way Iran can address them. I request a serious answer please. You obviously can’t confront nuclear weapons with guerrilla warfare or sleeper cells!

  104. M.Ali says:

    Hack,

    “Well, if you can’t get a war started any other way. The US and Israel want Iran out of the way. That’s going to cost “political capital” any way you look at it. They didn’t care about the political capital of Iraq, or Libya, or the situation in Syria. They won’t care about the cost of an Iran war as long as they damage the country badly enough to get a) profits, and b) a weakened Iran that can’t interfere with Israel and the US effectively. (Again, it doesn’t even matter if the latter can actually be achieved – the point is they want it, so they will try. The war profits will be achieved regardless of any other outcome.)”

    Even if they did naval blockade, it won’t cause Iran to attack USA. It would annoy countries that were supposed to receive Iranian ships, because that wouled be USA directly getting involved in their personal shit.

    But even if USA does that, and is willing to lose political capital with these guys, what if China decides to send a ship in Iran’s port instead? Will USA stop Chinese ships?

  105. ExposingNeoConWarmongeringStooges says:

    Richard Steven Hack says:
    December 1, 2012 at 1:46 pm

    “The multi-national naval force in the Gulf includes three US Nimitz class carrier groups, each of which has more aircraft than the entire complement of the Iranian air force.
    The carriers are supported by at least 12 battleships, including ballistic missile cruisers, frigates, destroyers and assault ships carrying thousand of US Marines and special forces.
    The British component consists of four British minesweepers and the Royal Fleet Auxiliary Cardigan Bay, a logistics vessel. HMS Diamond”

    So let’s say for the sake of argument that the US and Britain combined have 25 ships in the Persian Gulf. Since we have established that Iran is manufacturing at least 30 Ghader missiles each month, and has been manufacturing them for more than a year, it has close to 500 Ghader missiles. Thus, Iran can target each enemy ship in the Persian Gulf with at least 20 Ghader missiles alone. Most of those ships other than the aircraft carriers can be sunk or severely damaged by 2 Ghaders. One missile type of many Iran has. If the ships stay more than 200 kilometers from the Iranian coast Iran can use its Persian Gulf ballistic missiles, drones (with laser guided bombs or light anti ship missiles) fast speed boat attacks with Ghaders, etc.

  106. James Canning says:

    Sahar,

    You think R S Hack is trying to encourage hostility toward Iran? Amazing.

  107. ExposingNeoConWarmongeringStooges says:

    Richard Steven Hack says:
    December 1, 2012 at 2:34 pm

    “Secondly, this is an anti-ship cruise missile, not an intermediate-range ballistic missile or a medium range ballistic missile, i.e., not a top attack missile. If he doesn’t even know what the hell the missile is, he should shut the fuck up.”

    Yes genius, producing a highly sophisticated cruise missile in large numbers is evidence that Iran can produce sophisticated missiles in large numbers, whether anti ship missiles, MRBM’s or other types. I clearly stated that in my previous post.

    “Third, if the number of missiles shown in the video are one month’s production, this agrees with other estimates – WHICH I CITED – that show Iran can produce perhaps 15 missiles of a given type per month, or perhaps 130 a year, not “hundreds.”

    1. Watch the video again. There are more than 30 missiles displayed. One type of at least 5 ASCMs Iran currently produces. Iran has been producing anti ship missiles since at least the mid 1990′s, and possibly before.

    2. Iran can produce over 30 missiles of a given type each month. Given that Iran produces many different types that should tell you something about the production capacity of Iran. If Iran can produce significant numbers of a wide variety of missiles (which it can and does), the assertion you cited that Iran produces only 6 of its most strategically important missiles per month is shown to be absurd.

    “This also does NOT translate into “thousands” of missiles when the missile in question was only introduced to mass production LAST YEAR. By now they have maybe a couple hundred.”

    No, I never claimed that the Ghader missile has had 1,000s produced, I was referring to the MRBMs that Iran has been producing for more than 15 years.

    “the Ghader is merely an improved copy of the Chinese C-802 missile Iran bought ten years ago. So it’s similar to one that Hizballah used to damage an Israeli ship back in the 2006 conflict. So it took Iran ten years to produce a COPY of an existing missile, and perhaps slightly improve the range (it’s unclear if it did since we don’t know which C-802 variant was copied.)”

    Hack, the unmodified C-802 is widely recognized as one of the most deadly ASCMs out there. The US Navy is very concerned about it, and with good reason. Iran has been producing C-802′s for a long time. And now it has produced a substantially upgraded version of a missile which rendered a supposedly sophisticated Israeli vessel non functional with one hit which required that it be towed back to port. So even if Iran only had C-802s and not the substantially upgraded version, the US Navy will be in deep trouble in any attempted aggression against Iran. How many nations manufacture improved copies of the C-802 by the way? I assume almost all do since you consider that to be such an easy task.

    “And it might be effective if any remain operational once the US Navy surges into the Persian Gulf after the initial hostilities and the Strait of Hormuz Iranian coast has been cleared.”

    What the Ghader will do is “clear” the Persian Gulf of any hostile ship that approaches the Iranian coast or tries to raise Iran’s own blockade of the strait of Hormuz. The US Navy may indeed last more than five minutes when Iran targets every US Navy ship in the Persian Gulf with dozens of missiles per ship, the addition of 1,000s of fast boats firing more ASCMs, submarines that are undetectable by the US Navy firing torpedoes, more boats that will deploy 1,000s of mines in hours, 100s of drones that can deploy precision guided munitions and on. US Navy ships in the Persian Gulf might last 5 hours in the fact of such an attack, but I doubt it. In fact this result is what the only remotely accurate simulation of such a conflict has found, and that simulation did not use all the forces Iran would have available in any conflict.

    I notice once again you have not provided any additional proof for the arguments that I previously debunked.

    I should also note that Hack’s implied demand that Iran provide proof of every missile it manufactures is absurd as well. No other nation has live video cameras in its strategic arms production plants or displays every missile it produces. Hack’s belief that Iran lies about its missile production and his demand that it must provide absolute proof of every missile it produces clearly illustrates his colonialist and imperialist attitude(funny how many of his ideas so clearly parallel those of the Neo Cons he claims to oppose).

  108. Nasser says:

    James Canning says:

    “Iran would not be allowed to build nukes, even if Iran wanted to build them.”

    - Who’s gonna stop them? And how?

  109. ExposingNeoConWarmongeringStooges says:

    Why was my civil reply to Hack’s insults not posted?

    Richard Steven Hack says:
    December 1, 2012 at 7:16 am

    You are the one that keeps insulting me and calling me an idiot whenever I produce any evidence or make any statement that disproves your claims or disagrees with your point of view.

  110. Sakineh Bagoom says:

    Smith,

    Wow, you certainly seem to have disdain for those whom disagree with you.

    “Fourth Generation warfare? Do you know even what it is?”

    Seriously? In the age of Internet? Here is my exact quote, part of which you chose to ignore:
    “[Iran] can only defend itself by way of fourth generation/asymmetric warfare. It cannot match the superpower missile for missile, gun for gun, boat for boat.”

    It cannot take on a superpower head on. Does that spell it out for you?

    ”Your opposition to nukes is based on your childish emotions and your prejudgments rather than on rationality and logic. The nuclear weapons can prevent large human life loss in Iran by preventing the coming war into the Iranian borders and cities”

    Yes, I am the childish, irrational, and illogical one here. So, by your way of reasoning, it is apparently OK for a Mullah to have his finger on a nuke and cause many “other” deaths, as long as they are not Iranians. It’s OK. Who cares? Mullahs never go mad, do they?

    For the record, I praise the Mullahs running Iran today. They’ve done far better than anything that, that nokar, shah, ever did or would have done.

    —-
    Also this –

    Everyone here talks about Iran having no friends and no one would come to help in case of a war. Iran does not need anyone to come to its rescue. It is a grown up country. In international relations countries don’t have “friends,” countries have “interests.” As we saw in Iran/Iraq war, it was to the “interest” of Israel to sell arms to Iran and the ensuing Iran/contra debacle.

  111. Richard Steven Hack says:

    The Exposed moron shows a video of the Ghader missile from September, 2011, claims that is is “one month’s production”, and extrapolates this to “100′s of MRBM’s (At least) per year”.

    First of all, I never said ANYTHING about the Ghader. I was talking about the Saijjil.

    Secondly, this is an anti-ship cruise missile, not an intermediate-range ballistic missile or a medium range ballistic missile, i.e., not a top attack missile. If he doesn’t even know what the hell the missile is, he should shut the fuck up.

    Third, if the number of missiles shown in the video are one month’s production, this agrees with other estimates – WHICH I CITED – that show Iran can produce perhaps 15 missiles of a given type per month, or perhaps 130 a year, not “hundreds.”

    Even if you add in all the OTHER Iranian missiles in mass production, you still don’t get “hundreds” of MRBMs because production of a LARGE missile is a lot harder than production of a SMALL missile.

    This also does NOT translate into “thousands” of missiles when the missile in question was only introduced to mass production LAST YEAR. By now they have maybe a couple hundred.

    Fourth, the Ghader is useful in the immediate Persian Gulf as its range is 124 miles (200km). Unless mounted on an Iranian naval vessel (which will last five minutes in an Iran war) or some sort of aircraft (ditto), it’s useless beyond that range. Which makes it useless against the US Navy parked in the Arabian Sea… It may be able to hit oil terminals and the like in the Gulf region, however. And it might be effective if any remain operational once the US Navy surges into the Persian Gulf after the initial hostilities and the Strait of Hormuz Iranian coast has been cleared.

    Fifth, the Ghader is merely an improved copy of the Chinese C-802 missile Iran bought ten years ago. So it’s similar to one that Hizballah used to damage an Israeli ship back in the 2006 conflict. So it took Iran ten years to produce a COPY of an existing missile, and perhaps slightly improve the range (it’s unclear if it did since we don’t know which C-802 variant was copied.)

    This, too, doesn’t bode well for “thousands” of MRBMs in the Iranian inventory.

    More BS from Exposed. This pathetic troll is completely clueless and prefers to make up hyperbolic statements about subjects he knows nothing about just to troll me personally.

  112. James Canning says:

    PB,

    The shipment of weapons into Mali after the overthrow of Gaddafi was an inintended consequence of the wester military intervention in Libya. Many weapons also have gone to Syria, from Libya.

  113. James Canning says:

    PB,

    I of course applaud all Iranian conversion of 20% U into fuel for the Tehran research reactor. Are you claiming Iran is not stockpiling 20% U beyond what is needed for the TRR?

    fyi,

    The P5+1 have to deal with the problem of the ISRAEL LOBBY in the US, which is preventing Obama from openly accepting Iranian enrichment to 5% or lower.

  114. Richard Steven Hack says:

    M. Ali: “That is, if a ship is to head for Russia, China, India, Brazil, etc, would USA be willing to lose political capital with these guys to stop the ships without UN approval? Seems unlikely.”

    Well, if you can’t get a war started any other way. The US and Israel want Iran out of the way. That’s going to cost “political capital” any way you look at it. They didn’t care about the political capital of Iraq, or Libya, or the situation in Syria. They won’t care about the cost of an Iran war as long as they damage the country badly enough to get a) profits, and b) a weakened Iran that can’t interfere with Israel and the US effectively. (Again, it doesn’t even matter if the latter can actually be achieved – the point is they want it, so they will try. The war profits will be achieved regardless of any other outcome.)

    There is a “hierarchy of needs”, as Maslow used to put it. Some are more important than others. My point has always been that war profits and hegemony trump most, if not all, “political” considerations, domestic and foreign.

    But I do think a “faux blockade” is in the cards first, because it’s how Obama thinks: be sneaky, obfuscate his real motives and intentions. He can claim a “faux blockade” is just another application of unilateral sanctions – which, technically, it is.

    Once that proves ineffective in stopping Iran’s program, he can claim the situation has changed and all other options have been exhausted except an actual blockade. At that point, it doesn’t matter if the UN approves or not. And it doesn’t matter if a naval blockade is an “act of war.”

    The UNSC would NEVER approve a military attack on Iran in any event, regardless of whether Iran was actually proven to be developing nukes. Russia and China would probably still veto a military attack. So there was never a chance of an Iran war sanctioned by the UNSC in the first place. And both Bush and Obama have explicitly said that they will not wait for such sanction if Iran reaches a certain point.

    All the US and Israel want is to get the pressure – and the public perception – up to the point where there is – allegedly – “no other option” but military action.

    In addition, Obama doesn’t want the US to be seen as having started another war, regardless of the real fact that it did via a blockade. So a naval blockade is perfect for that because it does not involve a US first strike on Iran.

    Obama can claim – incorrectly, but who’s going to correct him? The mainstream media? – that the naval blockade is a legitimate extension of the unilateral sanctions – even if it isn’t. As long as the US Congress approves it – and they will, we all know that – it doesn’t matter whether a handful of international law scholars – or for that matter, Ban Ki Moon at the UN – says it’s illegal.

    That happened with Iraq. Iraq was illegal. People said so. It happened anyway.

    I can’t see any more effective, sneaky way to get a war with Iran started than a naval blockade. It’s the perfect scenario. A “false flag” attack by fake Iranian military forces on US assets done by the US or Israel is subject to being exposed, like any such conspiracy. A naval blockade is easy, out in the open, and its legality can be argued about while the reality is in place.

    Fyi says the blockade will be hard. That’s ridiculous. It’s hard to be at sea anyway. The US and NATO have dozens of ships in the Arabian Sea right now. The recent war games included:

    Quote

    The multi-national naval force in the Gulf includes three US Nimitz class carrier groups, each of which has more aircraft than the entire complement of the Iranian air force.

    The carriers are supported by at least 12 battleships, including ballistic missile cruisers, frigates, destroyers and assault ships carrying thousand of US Marines and special forces.

    The British component consists of four British minesweepers and the Royal Fleet Auxiliary Cardigan Bay, a logistics vessel. HMS Diamond, a brand-new £1billion Type 45 destroyer, one of the most powerful ships in the British fleet, will also be operating in the region.

    End Quote

    Another recent cite of the British presence:

    The British Royal Navy currently has four frigates and destroyers (including the new Type 45 area defence destroyer HMS DARING), two minesweepers, and some replenishment vessels ‘east of Suez’, several of which are stationed inside the Persian Gulf.

    And that didn’t include the French contingent, the Canadian contingent and others.

    Also, there is such a thing as the Combined Maritime Forces which already operate in the Arabian Sea to deal with piracy:

    Combined Maritime Forces: U.S Global Naval Force in the Arabian Sea
    http://www.globalresearch.ca/combined-maritime-forces-u-s-global-naval-force-in-the-arabian-sea/31697

    These comprise some 14-15 – some estimates say 35-40 – ships provided by numerous countries.

    According to Global Research, back in 2010, Arabian Sea forces included:

    With USS Lincoln and the USS Truman carrier strike group, there will be three carriers, ten other ships, an attack submarine and as many as 150 military aircraft in the Arabian Sea. That is in addition to the five warships of the NATO Maritime Group 1 in theater, 14-15 ships with CTF-150 and perhaps dozens more with CTF-151, CFT-152 and CTF-158. [CTF is Combined Task Force.)

    Another official statement about the Fifth Fleet said:
    "There are approximately 16,000 personnel at sea aboard more than 40 US Navy, Coast Guard and fleet auxiliary ships in the US Fifth Fleet AOR [Area of Responsibility.]

    There are probably even more now. More than enough to bottle up Iranian ships. That’s not even counting the available aircraft which also serve as enforcers of a blockade. Once the blockade is in effect, no Iranian ship will be able to leave the Persian Gulf.

    It’s even possible that Western nations, already not docking Iranian ships normally under the earlier “faux blockade”, might actually be persuaded to seize those ships already in their vicinity. I don’t know whether that would be even remotely “legal”, but I suspect it wouldn’t matter.

    The blockade doesn’t have to last long anyway. Iran can’t afford to have all its ships bottled up in the Persian Gulf for more than a couple months. We’re talking a complete cessation of Iranian oil sales (aside from deals made outside the region for ships and oil assets outside the Gulf.)

    Not to mention the fact that Iran would have to respond or be considered weak. Iran will have to retaliate in some way. Depending on that way, the US might have “justification” to attack Iran.

    If Iran could somehow defeat that blockade without military means, then perhaps Iran could avoid a war. I don’t see any way off the top of my head. The most likely response by Iran would be to close the Persian Gulf to all other shipping by mining the Gulf and the Strait. That would definitely trigger a war because the West’s naval forces would have to enter the Persian Gulf, run mine-clearing operations, and this would inevitably escalate to shooting at Iranian ships laying mines. The US would claim the mine-laying is a threat to international peace and trade, most of the UNSC (possibly even including Russia and China) would agree, and it would be an easy justification to escalate to actual conflict. Not to mention the likelihood of an “accidental” escalation as a result of interactions between the Iranian Navy, IRGC and US/NATO ships.

    Bottom line: If we presume that the West’ intentions against Iran involve military action under some pretext, then the war has to start somehow. A blockade is a perfect way to do it.

  115. James Canning says:

    Pirouz,

    I agree with you the US should have voted for the Palestinians, at the UN this week. This in fact would have been in the true best interest of Israel.

    The ISRAEL LOBBY makes sure that no one in the US can achieve high positions in the making of US foreign policy in the Middle East, unless that person toes much of the line set donw by the Lobby. Being “white” or “black” has nothing to do with the equation.

  116. James Canning says:

    fyi,

    Did you see PressTV story five days ago: “Iran open to talks with P5+1: Iranian lawmaker”?

  117. James Canning says:

    ToivoS,

    Why would the existence of illegal colonies of Jewish settlers change the borders of Palestine? Surely this should be regarded as a delsuion of Bibi Netanyahu.

  118. James Canning says:

    R S Hack,

    I of course agree with you that FYI is very much mistaken, if he thinks Obama will not proceed to blockading Iran if Iran continues to stockpile 20% U.

  119. James Canning says:

    R S Hack,

    You might try making short convincing rebuttal comments, in response to “trolls”.

  120. James Canning says:

    Sineva,

    Do you think Iran blundered when it trebled production of 20 percent enriched uranium?

  121. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Just read a post from one of the guys who run the TV By The Numbers Web site. That site monitors TV show ratings – best place to find out if your favorite show is going to get canceled or not.

    One of the owners, Bill Gorman, said in response to a post:

    “Being a troll is sad enough, being a troll who has no idea what he’s talking about is just pathetic.”

    ‘Nuff said. You know.

  122. SAHAR says:

    It is suspious to me that this site allows Richard Steven Hack to paste so much
    junk at this site. Have you ever thought about it?

  123. SAHAR says:

    DON’T TRUST Richard Steven Hack. He is trying to influence people in a negative way on Iran and Syria. He CANNOT BE TRUSTED. IGNORE HIM.

  124. ExposingNeoConWarmongeringStooges says:

    Richard Steven Hack says:
    December 1, 2012 at 7:07 am

    Funny how you never actually provide any proof for your assertions but than attack me when I supposedly do not. I also note how you are still ignoring the many statements I have supported with actual proof while you have not done the same for any of yours.

    So let’s disprove your false statements once again:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6ncq-aJgUlA

    Note the title: Major Military Parade in Tehran begins Holy Defense Week – Iran 22 Sept. 2010 P2

    Sejils were also shown in other parades in other Iranian cities as well at the same time and photos of those exist as well.
    And note when that video was uploaded…yet another instance of Hack citing statements that are untrue and can easily be disproven as absolute truth.

  125. ExposingNeoConWarmongeringStooges says:

    Richard Steven Hack says:
    December 1, 2012 at 6:21 am

    Hack, nothing you have said, not one statement, disproves anything that I have said. So my previous challenge to you, to produce actual evidence that supports your claims has not yet been answered. Instead you produced more unproven claims. Yes some random person at a US funded think tank claims that a missile test was a failure. What proof did they present? Any at all? The answer is they did not present any proof. They, and you than make an absurd leap of illogic that based only on publically disclosed tests Iran has not tested the Sejil “enough.” That is absurd. Once again, if the Sejil was somehow not “ready” Iran would not be showing dozens of them in military parades. Iran is not going to manufacture dozens of copies of a missile that is still being tested and that does not work. You also claim that “experts” agree on this is absurd as I just demonstrated. I will repeat, those same “experts” you cite are the same ones who never predicted any of the huge proven advances that Iran’s missile program has made, in all areas. Thus their record, just like yours, is zero accurate predictions or statements regarding Iran’s missile program.

    And to correct your flagrant distortion of what I said here

    “Exposed hasn’t got squat to stand on here, as is typical of his wild assertions: “dozens” of missiles become “hundreds” and “hundreds” becomes “thousands”.

    I have clearly stated that based on the huge industrial base of Iran, its demonstrated capacity to manufacture large quantities of many types of missiles, and its clear defense strategy that involves use of missiles to defend itself, it has the capacity to manufacture, at a minimum, hundreds of missiles per year. Thus it has, at a minimum, several thousand MRBM’s. I have not stated how many Sejils their are in total and nowhere have I stated that “dozens” of missiles become “hundreds” become “thousands.” Your argument is that, for some reason you cannot explain, Iran would not use this capacity. All of those missiles can accurately strike the targets Iran needs them to strike, as has been demonstrated in actual footage of actual tests of those missiles which I have linked to and you are still pretending does not exist.

    Richard Steven Hack says:
    December 1, 2012 at 6:22 am
    BTW, anyone notice this howler:
    “And Iran has demonstrated the accuracy of its targeting systems on older and less accurate missiles.”
    So Iran has demonstrated less accurate accuracy. Brilliant.

    Since you have a problem understanding simple clearly worded statements I will explain this to you. The Shahab 3 is an older missile and thus less accurate. However, as demonstrated in actual tests it is still more than accurate enough to do what Iran needs it to do. Other missiles, that Iran has developed more recently such as the Fateh 110, Persian Gulf, Ghader, etc have demonstrated an even greater degree of accuracy and precision. Thus “Iran has demonstrated the accuracy of its targeting systems on older and less accurate missiles.”

  126. Sineva says:

    fyi says:
    November 30, 2012 at 8:30 pm
    I agree,in addition it increasingly looks as though the end goal of the sanctions has shifted from one of capitulation on the nuclear issue to one of regime change

  127. Richard Steven Hack says:

    You may note that I’m getting tired of being insulted and TROLLED by this ASSHOLE TROLL Exposed who is deliberately lying to everyone here and making hyperbolic assertions unsupported by any evidence whatsoever.

    Either he goes or I go. I’m sick of MORON TROLLS on this site who have an obsession with me and spend all their posts attacking the posts I make. There is supposed to be moderation rules on this site that prohibit that shit.

  128. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Incidentally, I am unaware of any “dozens” of Saijil being displayed in any military parade in Iran. Neither has there been ONE citation of same.

    As far as I can tell from a Google search, a FEW Saajil have been displayed at ONE parade THIS YEAR – in fact, only this September. In fact, the articles on this parade explicitly state that this missile has NEVER BEEN DISPLAYED PUBLICLY BEFORE.

    Military parade september 2012
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qpI90X0u3-s

    This is the only video I can find which shows the Sajjil being displayed and as far as I can tell, no more than perhaps four or so were shown.

    There have as far as I can tell NEVER been “dozens” shown ANYWHERE at ANY TIME.

    Exposed is deliberately LYING to the people on this site. Take note and decide whether you want to pay any attention to this clown going forward.

  129. Richard Steven Hack says:

    BTW, anyone notice this howler:

    “And Iran has demonstrated the accuracy of its targeting systems on older and less accurate missiles.”

    So Iran has demonstrated less accurate accuracy. Brilliant.

  130. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Re the old New York Times article on the test firing of the Saijil:

    “Mr. Vick added that Tehran test-fired an even longer-range missile that used solid fuel, the Ashura, in late 2007 and several times afterward.”

    The Ashura test was a failure, which Vick forgot to mention.

    Also, despite Vick’s claim of “deployment” of the Saijil, there is no evidence presented to back up that claim and in fact the statement is ambiguous in terms of whether the missiles were merely “deployed” in the sense of “operational tests” as opposed to “mass produced”. Note that this was the FIRST test of the new version. This version therefore could not be mass production.

    The bottom line is that most missile experts state unequivocally that Iran can NOT deploy a new missile line in mass production without more live tests (not simulations) of the missile to exceed the six detected tests the Saijil has undergone. At least twice that many would be needed and there is zero evidence that Iran has done so. If Iran is mass producing and deploying the missile after six tests, they are deploying an unreliable and inaccurate missile – the more so because this missile is a longer range missile than other types in the Iranian inventory.

    Exposed hasn’t got squat to stand on here, as is typical of his wild assertions: “dozens” of missiles become “hundreds” and “hundreds” becomes “thousands”.

    Iran does not have “thousands” of missile capable of being used across the regional theater. At most it has perhaps 1,000+- a couple hundred. As I said, a nice arsenal compared to others in the region, but not necessarily a deterrent to the US or Israel.

  131. Richard Steven Hack says:

    fyi: “Good post indicating that Iranian missiles cannot serve as ultimate deterrence an that Iran needs nuclear weapons. Which is what Mr. Smith was stating earlier.”

    The conclusion does not follow. The conclusion that DOES follow is that Iran needs to be confident in its ability to DEFEAT a US attack, not avoid one which it cannot deter by ANY means given its relative military strength.

    “You clearly do not understand what blockade duty is like and its toll on men and ships.”

    And exactly how different is it from the current rotated deployment of US and NATO naval vessels. Your statement is complete nonsense.

    “Be as it may, blockade means war and it is my judgement that US is not prepared to take that step during Mr. Obama’s second term.”

    Your opinion has been noted before. As I said before, we’ll see.

  132. M. Ali says:

    9 voted against Palestanian recognition and I was curious to see who these 9 were. 2 was obviously Israel & US, but I was curious about the other 7. For those interested its,
    Canada, Czech Republic, Panama, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Nauru and Palau.

  133. M. Ali says:

    Hack,

    “That’s ridiculous. Just with the number of US/NATO ships in the region now, they could enforce a blockade. Just park them all at the mouth of the Arabian Sea and prevent Iranian ships from entering or leaving the Persian Gulf. Air power identifies the ships and you move to interdict them.

    I expect before that is done that the rumored “faux blockade” will be done, i.e., Iranian ships (and perhaps aircraft) will not be allowed to dock at any nation’s port that recognizes US sanctions. This approach would be far less effective but would not require US/NATO ships to take any action.

    I think faux blockade seems more possible. A literal navy blockade seems unlikely. That is, if a ship is to head for Russia, China, India, Brazil, etc, would USA be willing to lose political capital with these guys to stop the ships without UN approval? Seems unlikely.

    However, yes, its possible that it would pressure allies to prevent Iranian ships to dock at their ports, sort of like what they did with its planes. A lot of countries now don’t fuel Iranian planes, making it more expensive for them to travel. When I visited Thailand last year, on my trip back, we had to have a stopover at India to refuel because Thailand couldn’t fuel Iranian planes due to American pressure. Obviously this reduces Iranian profits since they have to do a stopover at India.

  134. Empty says:

    Smith, fyi, and the like-minded et al.,

    You appear to have tried to turn “nuclear weapons as a deterrent” to a conventional knowledge simply by repeating the idea. Yet, as I have followed the details of reasons and logic you have outlined/echoed, I do not see clear solid evidence that supports your idea that indeed an Iran equipped with nuclear weapons would be immune to attacks, destruction (1st, 2nd, 3rd, etc. strikes), and would have a reasonable chance for defense through that particular venue. That is, please sketch a reasonable predictive model in which Iran has nuclear weapons, that it can use them as a defensive weapon, and most importantly its use would not result in death of innocent people (as a collateral damage) anywhere in the world, and its own population would be safe from attacks. In your modeling, please consider two scenarios: 1) US Inc. is not deterred; 2) Iran’s decision to either use or not use these weapons to retaliate.

    “The wrong question is a question that already assumes that which it ought to question.” – D. Bohm

  135. Castellio says:

    Pirouz, maybe the political lesson learned is not to assume a person’s thoughts because you know their colour…

  136. BiBiJon says:

    The death of the laptop of death
    ==============================

    http://www.lobelog.com/fake-ap-graph-exposes-israeli-fraud-and-iaea-credulity/

  137. ExposingNeoConWarmongeringStooges says:

    Richard Steven Hack says:
    November 30, 2012 at 6:45 pm

    Oh dear DebkaFile. But it does share something in common with all those other sources that you site. It never provides any actual evidence for anything it says and it has no idea how many missiles Iran is producing. The fact is those same sources you claim to be infalliable in this case never predicted that Iran would manufacture a highly accurate ballistic anti ship missile, that Iran would be able to reverse engineer and mass produce an improved Buk M2E, or that Iran could detect and capture the RQ-170 stealth drone marvel. They also repeatedly predicted that Iran would develop ICBM’s when it has not and will not. Oh but in this case their laughable predictions concerning Iran’s missile production must be true because you say so…

    Here is all or part of one month’s production of the Ghader anti ship missile

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=13RzMXdpeBw

    Just keep telling yourself that Iran is not manufacturing 100′s of MRBM’s (At least) per year and no doubt reality will adjust itself to conform to your preconceived ideas.

  138. ExposingNeoConWarmongeringStooges says:

    Richard Steven Hack says:
    November 30, 2012 at 6:46 pm

    Hack, the civilian vehicles referred to in the actual cable are heavy trucks not “family sedans.” I referred to that in my previous post when I mentioned that Iran was recently importing several thousand per year. That is yet another reason why you do not use The Telegraph as a reliable news source without double checking what they claim. Of course as I also previously stated Iran also makes its own heavy trucks.

    http://aleebrahim.com/Old%20Conference%20Papers/Transportation%20in%20Iran%20Full%20Paper.pdf

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iran_Khodro_Diesel

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mercedes-Benz_Actros

  139. ToivoS says:

    “Pirouz says:
    November 30, 2012 at 9:04 pm
    Here’s something to consider:”

    I agree with your comment here implicitly. Iran made a pragmatic decision and voted not for what it wished to be true but what is probably in the best interests of the Palestinians.

    As one who believes the one-state solution is the most likely outcome of the I-P conflict I also supported this UN resolution. Logically, this resolution enhances the PA and their efforts to build two-states. It seems extremely unlikely that a viable Palestinian state in the WB is still possible. So what is the benefit to the Palestinians in pushing this into the UN? It will obviously not change the reality on the ground in Palestine. But it will give them an international position to advocate for their rights in many UN commissions and especially the ICC. This will not only put pressure on Israel but it will also help the Palestinians in their efforts to boycott, divest and sanction (BDS) the current Israeli regime. That is going to be the successful path to resist Israeli oppression of the Palestinians.

    We will see later if this comes out as two states or a Palestinian majority one state.

  140. PB says:

    Pirouz-jan

    When the PA celebrated they were accompanied with the Turkish foreign minister. Iran was no where to be found.

  141. fyi says:

    PB says:

    November 30, 2012 at 8:51 pm

    In fact, Iran is not comitted to talks and I gather that Oran conversation with P5+1 is practically over.

    There might be some give in IAEA-Iran talks but even that is a stretch.

    In regards to Syria – there is long hard slug ahead of the Syrian government as the anti-government forces are destroyed. The government needs to maintain the the control of certain key points – ports, airports, and major cities and roads. They can fight indefintely.

    Do not be worried about Lebanon; her leaders will be very careful.

    In regards to the Axis Powers bringing back neo-colonialism etc;; there is zero chance of that. The formerly subject people do not want them back and they cannot be brought back. Furthermore, Axis States are broke; within the rules of capitalist game. They cannot wage wars of aggression unless they pauperiz their own populations. And the basis of their power imploded in 2011.

  142. ExposingNeoConWarmongeringStooges says:

    Richard Steven Hack says:
    November 30, 2012 at 7:12 pm

    It is worth nothing, just like all the rest of the unsourced speculation you post here. Their are actual pictures of the blast site available that show absolutely no evidence that any launchers were present.

  143. ExposingNeoConWarmongeringStooges says:

    Richard Steven Hack says:
    November 30, 2012 at 7:04 pm

    I hate to have to tell you this Hack but ISIS has no idea what is actually going on in Iran’s missile program any more than you do. More nonsense that makes claims that are completely unproven and rest on absolutely no evidence. A missile program is not “stalled” if it is producing at the very least, dozens of missiles. That is an active missile program that is mass producing missiles. Once again you are failing to provide any actual, verifiable evidence for your claims.

  144. ExposingNeoConWarmongeringStooges says:

    Richard Steven Hack says:
    November 30, 2012 at 7:27 pm

    Yes so even very low estimates admit Iran has at least 800 Shahab 3s alone. That actually disproves your argument. Of course real production is far higher.

  145. Pirouz says:

    Here’s something to consider:

    Iran doesn’t have a high opinion of the Palestinian Authority and Abu Mazen. The consider the PA a client entity of the U.S. and an unworthy rival of Hamas. But when it came down to voting on yesterday’s Palestine resolution, they took a principled stand and voted for what they saw the greater good of Palestine. They voted yes, in favor of the Palestinian Authority.

    The United States was facing a similar dilemma to that of Iran in this case. The United States could have taken a principled stand and voted in favor of the Palestinian Authority, over its favored entity Israel. But the Obama administration, like all the administrations before it (with the partial exception of Carter) was incapable of voting for the greater good and voted unjustly against the PA. Obama was incapable of taking the principled stand that Iran did.

    We don’t have real African-Americans in high positions in the Obama administration. Real African-Americans know first hand the kind of injustice being meted out to the Palestinians in the occupied countries. Obama was raised by two white grandparents. And Susan Rice’s father was grossly preoccupied with a sense that he didn’t want his daughter to be perceived as an affirmative action case, that is to say reverse-discrimination. Hell, I don’t even think the example of Apartheid South Africa enters in any way into their expanded cultural identities as African-Americans. How else to explain their ignoring the obvious similarities with the current situation in the occupied territories? So what we really have here are two non-African, African-Americans. Sad, really. So much more is expected from them and they just continue to disappoint.

  146. PB says:

    To NEO, Fyi, James Cannes:

    Iran’s commitment to the “talks” is a mistake. The Supreme Leader’s call for Nukes being “unislamic” will be a point many Iranians will come back to review as a historic call needing re-evaluation. Iran converted its 20% enriched uranium into fuel this month in order to show their commitment to non-military nature of its program is also a set back in the upcoming negotiations. It is another chip lost.

    Syria is likely to fall now, and Lebanon will be next. The “Syrian experiment” will be repeated in Iran and Iraq. Iran is looking for a deal that does not exist. The Arab Spring has been turned into a violent overthrow of anything that even dared to object Western hegemony. Meanwhile the uprisings in Bahrain and Saudi Arabia are contained. The new government in Tunesia is clearly under French rule. Libya is in civil war while its oil resources are replacing Iran’s oil and gas exports to Europe. The installation in Libya were never damaged. This is why Europe no longer needs Iran’s resources. Egypt is being moved toward a new dictatorship (we all should have been wondering how Mr. Mosri was able to get the Egyptian military to step aside without a single bullet being fired).

    What is more disturbing than anything else is that it appears the Western Countries have decided for the world to return to its colonialist past rather than a new vision for the world that all nations participate. The best example of this is the transfer of Libyan weapons to islamic extremists to cause civil war in Mali. Now, West African Military forces are getting ready to occupy Mali under the leadership of French military, effectively returning a third French colony back to its owner: Tunesia, Libya (French/Italian) and Mali. Therefore, we are observing the reoccupation of ME by its “rightful owners.” It’s a shame, we could have hoped for a better world .

  147. fyi says:

    Richard Steven Hack says:

    November 30, 2012 at 6:19 pm

    Good post indicating that Iranian missiles cannot serve as ultimate deterrence an that Iran needs nuclear weapons.

    Which is what Mr. Smith was stating earlier.

  148. fyi says:

    Richard Steven Hack says:

    November 30, 2012 at 5:09 pm

    You clearly do not understand what blockade duty is like and its toll on men and ships.

    Be as it may, blockade means war and it is my judgement that US is not prepared to take that step during Mr. Obama’s second term.

    There will be no negogiations with Iran – either P5+1 or with US.

    Iranians have communicated their minimum requirement – public acknowlegement by P5+1 of Iran’s right to enrich before anything else.

    P5+1 have rejected that.

    EU has rejected any bilateral US-Iran deal.

    So has Russia.

    I said in this forum last year – the alienation of Axis States and Iran as well as the UNSC sanctions against Iran are permanent fixtures of the international arena.

    They will stand for decades.

  149. BiBiJon says:

    fyi says:
    November 30, 2012 at 3:47 pm

    “As I said before, in war, there is no substitute for victory.”

    Well, yes, and yes to all other truisms eked out of ambiguous statements.

    On the surface, however, the Iran-q war ended in a stalemate, not defeat. The history has unfolded before our eyes and there can be no question that Iraq’s use of chemical weapons, acceptance of military assistance and supplies from colonial powers, funding from external sources, etc. were elements of a moral defeat that presaged Ba’thist’s violent end.

    Iran’s history was also written. No one doubts Iranian’s readiness to defend themselves at almost any cost, that aggression on Iran will not be cheap and a generation of people have been reconnected to their homeland, inspired by those who sacrificed.

  150. Pirouz says:

    Reza,

    I won’t sign the petition. I think highly of some, not all, of Kaveh’s work. But it’s my understanding that:

    1) There was a lawful warrant for his arrest. (If memory serves me right, he had multiple multiple parking tickets which he chose to ignore and chose to ignore the follow-up notices that came in the mail.)

    2) I suspect his own personal behavior at the time of the arrest initiated or contributed towards how he was treated by the arresting officers.

    Kaveh needs to brush his self off, pay the fines and get on with his important work. He surely doesn’t need to be another Reidar Visser, distracted as he is from his important work on Iraq and the Gulf studies and instead focusing on law enforcement efforts at the place of his residence, Norway.

  151. ExposingNeoConWarmongeringStooges says:

    Richard Steven Hack says:
    November 30, 2012 at 6:19 pm

    “The Shahab-3/Ghadr-1/Sajjil-2 are all quite inaccurate missiles, with CEP values of greater than 2km.”

    Ah the revered “Russian Expert” Sobaka. Yet another “expert” who cannot even do a simple online search to see if their ideas are supported by reality or not. I have absolutely no reason whatsoever to doubt any of his other unsubstantiated assertions sine he can’t even be bothered to check that one do I?

  152. Pirouz says:

    fyi says:
    November 29, 2012 at 10:26 am

    The Iran-Iraq war didn’t end in 1988. There was a ceasefire, but for years Iran cultivated its Iraqi cadre which included military, political and religious figures. With the introduction of American hard power, the Iranians put forward these cultivated elements into Iraq.

    1) The IRGC-formed Badr Brigade was transfered to Iraq and took up important military and political positions.

    2) Exiled Iraqi Shia clerics were transfered from Iran into Iraq.

    3) The actual executioners of Saddam Hussein were elements of a Shia militia backed by Iran.

    4) The Shia government in Iraq has been effectively sponsored by Iran, from the use of an Iranian provided presidential Airbus and crew for use by the government of Iraq, to political counseling in Iran, to a safe haven for political and religious figures during the American military occupation and much more.

    No FYI, the symbolic end of the Iran-Iraq war took place when President Ahmadinejad landed in Baghdad and received kisses on the cheek from Iraq’s top leadership.

  153. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Arms Control Association published an article in 2008 which said the following:

    European Missile Defense: Assessing Iran’s ICBM Capabilities
    http://www.armscontrol.org/act/2007_10/Mistry

    Quote

    Further, even after regional powers test prototype ICBMs or equivalent SLVs, they only build one or two such systems each year, in part because international technology embargoes and economic constraints considerably limit their volume of missile production. Illustrating this, the historical record from the 1980s and 1990s shows that North Korea annually built 50-100 short-range, Scud-type missiles and 10-20 medium-range, Nodong-type missiles. Some reports note that Iran may have increased its production rate to perhaps five Shahab-3s each month.[13] Yet, regional powers have initially built only one or two long-range systems annually, such as the 130-metric-ton booster used on India’s polar SLV that flew six times in the eight years after its first launch in 1993.

    If Iran cannot acquire the Taepo Dong-2C or its major subsystems from North Korea, it would have to build this missile indigenously. Iran has an active missile research and development program based at the Shahid Hemmat Missile Industries Complex in Tehran. It also has considerable experience with missile development and production. It successfully developed the Shahab-3, albeit with initial North Korean and Russian assistance,[14] and is believed to have produced at least several tens of these missiles. This missile infrastructure could enable Iran to develop more powerful, intercontinental-range missiles, but it is unclear whether Iran could build and field many such missiles by 2012-2015 because missile development can take at least five years.

    One missile study, the Rumsfeld Commission report of 1998, noted that “a nation with a well-developed, Scud-based ballistic missile infrastructure would be able to achieve first flight of a long-range missile, up to and including intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) range [greater than 5,500 kilometers], within about five years of deciding to do so.”[15] This estimate has been true for some regional powers but not for others. India actively began working on the 48-metric-ton, 3,000-kilometer-range Agni-3 missile around 2001[16] and first unsuccessfully tested it in 2006, with a successful test in 2007. Thus, India built an advanced, medium-range missile after five to six years of actively working on, rather than of simply making a decision to pursue, this system.

    End Quote

    Note the production rate of Shahab-3′s – estimated to have increased to five a month, or 60 a year. This would jibe with the estimated 300 or so Iran is supposed to have as of earlier estimates a few years ago. And this was only claimed in 2006 and not verified. By now, then, Iran might have an additional 500 or so IF production remained at that rate.

  154. ExposingNeoConWarmongeringStooges says:

    Richard Steven Hack says:
    November 30, 2012 at 6:19 pm

    “With that logic if Iran lined up a row of S300 missile tubes you would say Iran is “mass producing” S-300. Again you are confusing a dozen Sejill missiles as meaning Iran has reached mass production stage. That is naive, any prototype system is going to have a small inventory that is used for testing and modification purposes. If Iran was mass-producing Sejill you would surely hear about it as it would be a great achievement for Iran like the Jamaran frigate was.”

    So let’s examine how easy it is to refute statements on a forum that provide no evidence. And this is a demonstration of the quality of the material Hack’s argument relies on.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2009/05/21/world/middleeast/21iran.html
    (This is the MSM which is hardly likely to exaggerate Iran’s capabilities in any area whatsoever).

    Quote 1

    “November, Iran’s defense minister, Mostafa Mohammad Najar, was quoted by state-run television as saying the Sejil missile was “very fast,” could be produced and stored “in mass” and was easy to prepare for launching. Its launcher can immediately be removed from the firing location, he said.”

    In other words, the Sejil is in mass production. I suspect the Iranian defense minister knows slightly more about Iranian missile production than the self proclaimed, world famous Russian “expert” Sobaka.

    And the article explains why this is important…

    Quote 2:

    “But a solid-fuel rocket, experts said, can be stored in mountains, moved around and reassembled, and fired on shorter notice, and thus could be harder for Israel or other nations to target.

    Mr. Najar said Wednesday that the Sejil-2, the version involved in the latest launching, differed from an earlier version of the Sejil in that it “is equipped with a new navigation system as well as precise and sophisticated sensors,” according to Iran’s official news agency.”

    And Iran has demonstrated the accuracy of its targeting systems on older and less accurate missiles.

    Now to the second claim, if missiles are being used purely for testing there are not in fact going to be dozens of them displayed in a military parade. They will be on testing ranges, not driving around the streets of Tehran. This is simple common sense. And of course, no nation ever shows more than a small percentage of its arms in military parades. This is also common knowledge and common sense that should not require further explanation.

    It took me 1 minute and 10 seconds (give or take a few seconds) to find an article that disproves the claim made by that poster whose claim you uncritically repeated. You need to do a lot better than that.

  155. Richard Steven Hack says:

    I have no idea if this is true at all, so for what it’s worth…

    Iran loses most of its ballistic missile launchers in mysterious blasts at the secret Imam Ali Base
    http://xmb.stuffucanuse.com/xmb/viewthread.php?tid=7225

  156. ExposingNeoConWarmongeringStooges says:

    Richard Steven Hack says:
    November 30, 2012 at 6:19 pm

    Oh boy, some random person on a forum who claims to be an expert made some assertions without presenting any proof for any of them. Wow, what a powerful argument that is. Yes, some random person on a forum who simply asserts things they provide absolutely no evidence for in the form of pictures, video, etc must have their assertions accepted as unquestioned fact. Unlike that person, I base my opinions on actual evidence.

    Like this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2Xh_kFgXEfY

    Since Hack will simply ignore the video I will explain what it shows. A Shahab 3 warhead impacts a target area designated by flags. The video can be paused to see how close to the flags the warhead is as it descends. When it explodes (Using cluster munitions) the explosion completely engulfs the target area, which is near the center of the explosion. Note this is a Shahab 3, not the more recently developed and more accurate Shahab 3 B, Sejil or Qiam. In addition to that video, the others I have previously linked to also show evidence of very highly accurate targeting by MRBM’s, the Persian Gulf Anti Ship ballistic missile, and others.

    So with that one simple link I just disproved most of your incredibly long copy paste job. Once again you and your argument fails (The result of doing a search for actual evidence instead of searching for assertions that are unproven and that support your preconceived ideas). My advice to you is to actually view the videos and articles I post links to since, unlike the stuff you link to, they provide actual evidence for my argument. Than see if you can find actual evidence, not random forum posts or assertions from NeoCon think tanks, that actually proves or supports yours.

  157. Richard Steven Hack says:

    ISIS also claims that the sanctions regime has interrupted Iran’s ability to import the chemicals and components needed to continue testing of the Sajjil missile:

    Iran sanctions halt long-range ballistic-missile development
    http://www.iiss.org/publications/strategic-comments/past-issues/volume-18-2012/july/iran-sanctions-halt-long-range-ballistic-missile-development/

    Quote

    The development of the Sajjil-2 began about a dozen years ago with the acquisition of the necessary production equipment and infrastructure, most probably from China. In May 2005, then-Defence Minister Rear Admiral Ali Shamkhani announced that Iran had successfully ground tested a large solid-propellant rocket motor, which would later emerge as the roughly 13-tonne first stage of the Sajjil-2 missile. The initial but unsuccessful flight test of the new missile, known at the time as Ashura, was conducted in November 2007. During a second test launch the following year, the missile, now named Sajjil, was apparently equipped with only an active first stage; the second stage was an inert dummy. A successful Sajjil launch in 2008 was followed by three flight tests of a two-stage Sajjil-2 missile in May, September and December 2009. The progressively shorter interval between tests – a typical feature of development programmes – suggests that Iran was enjoying success with the Sajjil-2 effort through 2009. Surprisingly, however, Iran did not test the Sajjil-2 in 2010. Not until February 2011 did engineers conduct the sixth flight, roughly 14 months after the December 2009 launch. No additional tests are known to have occurred since February 2011.

    Possible reasons for the hiatus
    Though the paucity of Sajjil-2 tests over the last 30 months could be interpreted as a signal that Iran has completed the development process and begun deploying the missile to military units, this is highly unlikely. Iran has not undertaken a sufficient number of test launches to validate the performance and reliability of the new missile. Given that solid-fuelled missile-development efforts elsewhere have required a minimum of a dozen test launches, and more typically 20 or more flights to create a combat-ready system, the Sajjil-2 would require at least another half-dozen flight tests. Having historically applied disciplined engineering management practices to its missile and space-launcher development efforts, there is nothing to suggest that Iran would expect its military to accept an unproven strategic weapon system.

    Iran may have the industrial capacity to produce some, or even most of the key propellant ingredients to support the manufacture of small solid-fuelled rocket motors, such as those that power the two-tonne Zelzal and Fateh-110 systems. However, the quality of locally produced ingredients very likely falls short of the requirements for the production of the much larger Sajjil-2 rocket motors.

    Iran’s history of importing key propellant components underscores this assessment. The panel of experts responsible for overseeing UNSCR 1929 compliance, for example, reported the interception in Singapore on 30 September 2010 of 302 drums of pure aluminium powder destined for Iran from China. The seized aluminium powder was suitable solely for solid-propellant production. Diplomatic cables made public by WikiLeaks provide additional evidence of Iran’s worldwide search for propellant ingredients, including attempted acquisitions from India and China.

    With each change in supplier, for each component ingredient, Iranian engineers would need to have revalidated the production line for Sajjil-2 rocket motors, a costly, time-consuming process that would require additional ground tests to confirm performance and reliability. Worse yet from the Iranian perspective, production engineers may not be able to manufacture rocket motors that behave in a predictable and repeatable fashion because of uncontrollable and possibly undetected deviations in the constituent propellant ingredients. Lacking a reliable rocket-motor production line, Iran cannot pursue a viable development effort capable of distinguishing between design faults and manufacturing defects, or of validating missile performance over a range of operational conditions. And for the same reason, Iran will find it profoundly difficult to manufacture large rocket motors for an operational missile with predictable performance and reliability.

    While it is impossible for outsiders to identify the precise reasons behind the stalled Sajjil-2 programme, it is reasonable to conclude that trade sanctions have disrupted Iran’s access to key propellant ingredients and compromised development efforts. If true, and if future applications of sanctions prevent Iran from establishing a reliable source of propellant ingredients regulated by the Missile Technology Control Regime, the Islamic Republic will not be able to create missiles capable of threatening western Europe, much less the United States, before the end of this decade.

    End Quotes

  158. Richard Steven Hack says:

    International Institute of Strategic Studies said the following:

    Quote

    Iran is also developing a new medium-range, solid-propellant missile, the Sajjil-2, potentially capable of delivering a 750kg warhead to a range of about 2,200km. Iran is the only country to have developed a missile of this reach without first having developed nuclear weapons. The solid-fuelled system offers many strategic advantages, including being less vulnerable to pre-emption thanks to its shorter launch-preparation time. The Sajjil-2, which was successfully flight-tested for the first time in November 2008, is still two to three years of flight testing away from becoming an operational system that can be deployed to military units. Iran has yet to demonstrate that the missile’s individual stages perform consistently and reliably under a variety of operational conditions. If deemed necessary, this new missile could conceivably be used for combat in late 2010 or early 2011. However, the history of solid-propellant missile programmes elsewhere suggests an initial deployment of the Sajjil-2 in 2012 or later is more likely.

    There exists no evidence to date to suggest that Iran can, on its own, develop or produce the individual components of a strap-down navigation and guidance system for ballistic missiles. Historic parallels suggest that Iran very likely must instead import complete guidance units. Nonetheless, Iran does appear to have some capability to assemble basic components for an inertial and guidance system, and the capacity to incorporate imported, factory-assembled guidance packages into its current fleet of missiles, a capability that seems adequate for the foreseeable future. Iranian engineers might seek to import better inertial navigation units or incorporate GPS receivers to enhance missile accuracy. However, without including precise thrust-termination capabilities or post-boost control systems, such improvements would be moderate at best. Therefore, Iran’s missiles armed with conventional warheads will very likely remain too inaccurate to be militarily effective.

    Indicators and timelines

    The average time needed to develop a new design and begin manufacturing prototypes for testing is typically between two and three years for liquid-fuelled missiles, and in some instances as long as five years. The development time for a new solid-propellant rocket motor is two years or more. With determined effort, most missile design and development activities can be hidden from public view or initially concealed within a commercial, space-launcher development programme. However, it is impossible to hide flight tests, which must be undertaken to verify and document a missile’s performance and reliability, uncover design and construction flaws, validate system performance under a variety of operational conditions, and train the military forces responsible for operating the missile. Rarely are fewer than a dozen flights performed before a missile system is deployed. Additional tests are required to identify and fix any flight failures during the test programme. The number of test flights can be minimised, by design or necessity. However, in such cases the time between tests almost invariably grows in order to ensure that each test yields maximum results. Consequently, the more interesting feature of a flight-test programme centres on the time needed to validate the missile’s design, performance and reliability, not the total number of tests.

    Development timelines elsewhere and Iran’s own experience with the Shahab-3 and Ghadr-1 suggest that future Iranian missile-development programmes based on liquid-propellant engines will include a flight-testing effort that extends over at least two years, and most likely three to five years, and involve at least half a dozen test launches. Flight-test programmes for solid-propellant missiles historically take on average more than four years. To achieve a reasonable measure of reliability and confidence, a dozen or more tests should be conducted. Therefore, Iran is not likely to field a liquid-fuelled missile capable of targeting Western Europe before 2014 or 2015. A three-stage version of the solid-propellant Sajjil capable of delivering a one-tonne warhead 3,700km similarly is at least four or five years away from possible deployment.

    End Quotes

    Bottom line: Again, no significant numbers of Sajjil missiles until at least 2014-2015. The “dozens” the clown Exposed cites are “operational test” missiles, not DEPLOYED missiles.

  159. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Oh, wow…I don’t know what to believe about THIS one! :-)

    WikiLeaks: Iran’s missile launchers towed by Peugeots
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/wikileaks/8299282/WikiLeaks-Irans-missile-launchers-towed-by-Peugeots.html

    IF TRUE – I repeat, IF TRUE – this puts paid to the notion that Iran has hundreds of missile launchers.

  160. Richard Steven Hack says:

    DebkaFile – the Israeli front publication – claimed the following production rates for the Seijil missile in 20090:

    Iran in mass production of long-range, solid-fuel Sejil surface missiles

    Quote

    Iran is slowing down the manufacture of the Shehab-3 surface missile in favor of mass production of the more accurate two-stage 2,000-kilometer range Sejil II ballistic missile powered with solid fuel, which was successfully tested on May 20, DEBKAfile’s military and Iranian sources report.

    More than 1,000 new Sejil IIs are projected to come off production lines in five years, at the rate of 200 a year.

    Western sources say the Iranians are over-ambitious and can deliver no more than 10-15 missiles a year at present, although with a huge multi-billion dollar investment they might raise output to 30.

    End Quote

    Even at the 200/year rate, it will be 2014 before Iran has 1,000 Seijil missiles. At the Western-estimated best rate of 30 – which makes far more sense given the production rates of the Shahab being much lower – it will be thirty years before they have that many.

    Bottom line: It continues to be true that Iran does not have more than 1,000 medium and long-range missiles, and probably around or less than 500 long-range missiles. Still a nice arsenal – but not enough to deter a US or Israeli attack.

  161. ExposingNeoConWarmongeringStooges says:

    Richard Steven Hack says:
    November 30, 2012 at 2:44 pm

    Only problem is that Iran already manufactures everything it needs to build ships. Those sanctions have already failed even before the bill is passed.

    “I expect this to occur after the Syria/Lebanon situation is resolved, probably in late 2013 or 2014.”

    Or 2015 or 2016 or 2017 or 2444. Any argument that claims to represent reality accurately enough to predict future events but constantly fails in those predictions and than seeks to evade its failure by shifting the times those events will supposedly occur is invalid.

  162. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Re Iranian missile capability, some remarks from a Russian military expert calling himself Sobaka on the Iran Military Forum are interesting:

    Quotes

    The Ashura/Sajjil/Sajjil-2 has been tested six times:
    27 November 2007 – Ashura missile, believed to have failed but no video or data available
    12 November 2008 – Sajjil, successful, videos shown, likely with an inert/dummy first stage, as has been the practice of most countries developing a new, two stage missile
    18 November 2008 – Sajjil, successful, with video. Unclear if active second stage.
    20 May 2009 – Sajjil-2, success, with video. Likely two stage version, though not tested to full range
    16 December 2009 – Sajjil-2, success, with video. Likely two stage version, though not tested to full range
    Feb 2011 – Sajjil-2, no video, dummy warhead landed in ocean south of Iran, 1900km range. Success

    The Shahab-3/Ghadr-1/Sajjil-2 are all quite inaccurate missiles, with CEP values of greater than 2km. Thus they cannot be used to attack military targets with any level of confidence. Could be used to attack cities, create fear, etc. Could harass military operations at large base; might slow preparations but not halt them completely. Improvements in accuracy only if a post-boost system added; there is no evidence of such development, but I could be undertaken in the coming years, but will take many more years to fully develop and introduce into the military.

    I do not know if any sub-munitions having E/O guidance for ballistic missiles with ranges of more than a few hundred km. Re-entry velocities of 1500-2000km missiles are too high (>3.5km/second); heating would likely blind infrared or optical seekers; would have to use radar correlater. Moreover, HE sub-munitions are usually dispersed from the main warhead a few hundred metres above the target area; this provides a tight distribution of explosives over the target. The time it takes for the sub-munitions to hit the ground from say 300 m altitude is less than one second, hardly enough time to manoeuvre to a specific target, like an aircraft.

    As for the flight tests, obviously none of us knows for certain how many have been completed. But, the US/Russia/UK and other member states inform the UN Security Council and the Panel of Experts responsible for UNSCR 1929, which bans tests. Their reports have been made public, and contain summaries. I rely on this, and other sources for the previously posted summary of tests. I could be wrong, but probably not by more than one or two tests.

    Even if we reduce the CEP to 500m, which would be a phenomenal achievement for the Ghadr or Sajjil, the odds of hitting and destroying a target, say an airplane, is less than one percent, and depending on the hardness of the target, could be less than 0.1 percent. A 500m CEP might be possible if GLONASS or GPS were included, and launches from a silo whose alignment is as close to perfect as possible, and the missile included a thrust termination trimming capability. Better accuracies require new tools not seen on the Ghadr of Sajjil. Maybe in the future.

    On valve closing: the issue is not the electronics or the mechanics of closure. As you say, in the modern era, many things are possible now that could not have been done before. THe real issue is how to shut down the engine. The fuel and oxidizer located between the valve and the injector head in the combustion chamber is residual and depending on how if flows, the shut down process will vary. Remember, the turbine is running a 30,000RPM and cannot be instantly shut down. I have worked with rocket engines my entire adult life and have never seen one terminate its thrust instantly, repeatedly and precisely. And again, this is why trimming engines have been used on some systems (R-27 to name but one) to improve accuracy. The CEP of the R-27, by the way, with its trimming capability was more than 1km, at a range of 2400km. And the R-27 is far more advanced than the Ghadr-1, whose engine I know well.

    By the way, this is why ballistic missiles whose range is more than a few hundred km are only good for delivery nuclear warheads. If you want precision and effectiveness with HE warheads, use a cruise missile or PGM from an airplane.

    I finished graduate school and began working on missiles and nuclear weapons in the mid-1970s, and now consult on various technical issues related to missile and air-defence. And that I guess makes me an old dog (Sobaka is Russian for dog) of 60 years. lol.

    Comment from another participant:

    Due to the relatively small number of tests (even for the Shahab-3b), I’m not sure if Iran can even suggest an offical CEP; there seems to be no video reagarding a shahab/sejil that strikes a predetermined target in the desert. One interesting thing that I found, the parallel between the Shahab and the Ghauri II (Pakistan), on this link they give an estimated CEP between 190 m and 1 km (http://www.fas.org/nuke/guide/pakistan/missile/hatf-5.htm ) and it’s true that both missiles seem to have striking similitudes and were develloped at the same time.

    Sobaka chimes in later after comments about whether the Sajjil has been deployed or not:

    On the Sajjil, as I have opined before, I do not know how the missile could be considered operational after only 6 tests. What country has ever achieved such success with so few tests of a completely new missile? None!! Iranian engineers are good, but they are not magicians. Look how long it took the Russians to operationalise the Bulava, a missile that borrows from existing systems (but with some significant differences as well. And remember, we have been building missiles since the late-1940s and have tremendous experience.

    Partiocipant jfb opines:

    Nobody here knows for sure how many sejil are deployed, that’s why I used the word “perhaps”. My impression was based on an earlier discussion about the number of tests to have an operational missile (twice more would be necessary at least according to Sobaka) and the fact that Iran has brought the Qyiam recently, after the sejiil. Since the density of a liquid-propellant allow you to have smaller tanks, so a smaller volume and less steel, there is certanly an economic advantage. The claim regarding the 30 minutes setup time was done with respect to some articles that I read, they said that the engineers were able to shorten the setup time, so that it gave an advantage over the Shahab (so implicitelly it’s not related to the silos). So why would a missile be deployed but not largelly present? The missile is recent, so it’s hard to imagine that Iran produced 1,000 of them in 2 or 3 years, also if further tests showed problem that were not expected the production could be phase out or slow down, finally if some breakthrough occurs with the liquid fuel technology and the setup time a solid fuel missile would be less a priority. Those are speculations but the fact that Iran introduce a new liquid-propellant missile 3 years after the Sejiil is strange otherwise.

    An exchange on the issue:

    Quote from: YMJ on March 18, 2012, 05:43:22 PM

    What makes you believe that it has only been tested 6 times? They can be disguised so many different ways and different systems of it can be tested many different was as well i assume, you would know better.

    Also, just because others have not had success with such few tests doesn’t make it impossible. It just makes it less likely, but not impossible.

    In my opinion the sejjil is operational and probably ready to be used against naval targets as well.

    Immortal responds:

    Your opinion is based on no facts where as Sobakas opinion comes from actual experience in the field of aerospace engineering. Sobaka’s opinion is based on official tests declared by the Iranian military as well as those noted by Western intelligence agencies to the UN. No one is saying there isn’t hidden tests, but the fact remains following the natural progression of Iranian ballistic missile development especially an indigenous program like the Sejill which isn’t based off a Chinese or Russian or North Korean missile. This type of development and switch to solid fuel takes longer than other types of ballsitic missiles. Iran revealed the Shahab-3 in 1998, yet it took till 2003 to declare “mass-production”, even after mass-production you saw the emergence of different variations of Shahab-3.

    Don’t confuse operational with meaning that Iran cannot get it to work. Operational means that Iran has a select small inventory of such missiles and is still modifying the missiles on a cost-benefit analysis. Once the needed modifications and enhancements of the missile are complete then you will see Iran declare mass-production.

    Also Iran is not going to use a 2000KM missile to attack naval targets that are 50KM in the Persian Gulf. Stop saying such nonsense. Furthermore, the Sejiil is a MRBM deterrent weapon. It’s accuracy (while unknown) is probably not capable to be less than the 50 meters to attack a moving naval target. The only anti-ship ballistic missile in Iran’s inventory is the Khale-je-Fars.

    And this exchange is particular relevant to the idiot Exposed claims of Sejill deployment:

    YMJ

    سرهنگ
    *
    Posts: 6176
    ir
    Vahdat, Moghavemat, Ezzat
    Respect: +1470

    Re: Shahab-3 Missiles……..
    « Reply #77 on: March 18, 2012, 10:08:26 PM »
    0
    Quote from: Immortal on March 18, 2012, 06:49:50 PM

    Don’t confuse operational with meaning that Iran cannot get it to work. Operational means that Iran has a select small inventory of such missiles and is still modifying the missiles on a cost-benefit analysis. Once the needed modifications and enhancements of the missile are complete then you will see Iran declare mass-production.

    Also Iran is not going to use a 2000KM missile to attack naval targets that are 50KM in the Persian Gulf. Stop saying such nonsense. Furthermore, the Sejiil is a MRBM deterrent weapon. It’s accuracy (while unknown) is probably not capable to be less than the 50 meters to attack a moving naval target. The only anti-ship ballistic missile in Iran’s inventory is the Khale-je-Fars.

    Your right, Soboka’s opinion is based on a lot of knowledge but the reason i believe it’s operational is because i have seen numerous sejjils lined up in rows. Maybe this doesn’t signal mass production, but i think it does. They have conducted 4 tests up to 2009-2011, that were announced. Sejjil together with silos, means deterrence power. I remember someone saying the reason silos are a dead give away from space is because of all the logistics for fueling the missile, but how about a solid fuel missile?

    The reason i speculate that it could be used against naval targets is because it was fired into the indian ocean. If they increase the warhead weight or size, this would decrease its distance but compared to other missiles; would allow for a longer range of fire at naval targets.

    Also based on this article;

    http://english.farsnews.com/newstext.php?nn=9004183498

    http://www.iranmilitaryforum.net/missiles-and-rockets/irgc-succeeds-in-hitting-targets-in-indian-ocean-from-northern-iran/msg83329/#msg83329

    Just so you know, i am VERY optimistic about Iran’s capabilities.

    To me what is being presented by Iran are not its capabilities of TODAY, but of 2001-2006 era.

    Immortal responds:

    Quote from: YMJ on March 18, 2012, 10:08:26 PM

    Your right, Soboka’s opinion is based on a lot of knowledge but the reason i believe it’s operational is because i have seen numerous sejjils lined up in rows. Maybe this doesn’t signal mass production, but i think it does.

    With that logic if Iran lined up a row of S300 missile tubes you would say Iran is “mass producing” S-300. Again you are confusing a dozen Sejill missiles as meaning Iran has reached mass production stage. That is naive, any prototype system is going to have a small inventory that is used for testing and modification purposes. If Iran was mass-producing Sejill you would surely hear about it as it would be a great achievement for Iran like the Jamaran frigate was.

    Quote from: YMJ on March 18, 2012, 10:08:26 PM

    They have conducted 4 tests up to 2009-2011, that were announced. Sejjil together with silos, means deterrence power. I remember someone saying the reason silos are a dead give away from space is because of all the logistics for fueling the missile, but how about a solid fuel missile?

    You think 6 tests is enough for Iran’s first MRBM solid fuel missile? You think that is enough testing for the Sejill which is Iran’s first ballistic missile that is based more on IRANIAN design and not North Korean or Russian? See this is where you are not only being naive, but disrespectful to other nations. Russia and the United States have been producing ballistic missiles since the Cold War. China has been producing ballistic missiles far far longer than Iran. All these countries had similar developmental time frames for similar projects like the Sejill or Khali-je-fars. Furthermore, these countries were not under sanctions and had a much larger access to technology with a wider military budget then Iran’s.

    Now taking into the account of exponential increase in technology and the ability to faster develop technology from the past that allows Iran to catch up relatively fast. This is evident by the fact Iran couldn’t even produce scud missiles in the 1980′s during the Iraq-Iran war yet was mass producing the Shahab-3 by 2003. No one here is saying that Iran hasn’t made great progress, but again you have to be realistic and see where Iran has started from. So by saying Iran can magically do what great military powers before it could not is not only disrespectful, but its wishful thinking.

    Quote from: YMJ on March 18, 2012, 10:08:26 PM

    The reason i speculate that it could be used against naval targets is because it was fired into the indian ocean. If they increase the warhead weight or size, this would decrease its distance but compared to other missiles; would allow for a longer range of fire at naval targets.

    You think a missile hitting a pre-determined unarmed dummy vessel means it can hit naval targets? I would assume the Indian ocean was used more as a way of testing the range then testing a naval target.

    First of all there is a difference between hitting a pre-determined target and hitting a moving target. Second of all any ballistic missile launch would be picked up by early warning radars so any naval ships in the area would begin counter-measures (such as moving in paths to throw off the target). Lastly, this would mean that the Sejill missile would require optical guidance which even Sobaka said that the Russian missile Iskander has problems with and its range is only 400KM. So unless Iran managed to somehow advance ahead of Russian technology the means of using a Sejill against navel targets is doubtful.

    Quote from: YMJ on March 18, 2012, 10:08:26 PM

    Just so you know, i am VERY optimistic about Iran’s capabilities.

    To me what is being presented by Iran are not its capabilities of TODAY, but of 2001-2006 era.

    Again there is a difference between optimistic thinking and bias thinking. With your logic than what Russia, China, and US are showing TODAY is not their current capabilities, but their capabilities from 7-10 years ago. Unless you also think that Iran is the only country hiding its capabilities

    YMJ proclaims Iran started mass production in 2009:

    Immortal;

    http://english.farsnews.com/newstext.php?nn=8810201301

    “Iran successfully tested the second generation of Sejjil missiles and brought it into mass production in 2009. ”

    Just because Russia or China take their time testing things before they put into mass production, doesn’t mean Iranian engineers have not been able to come up with a perfect design that can be tested 6-10 times and brought into mass production ASAP.

    Immortal responds to this claim:

    You act very naive and disrespectful to the military industries of other countries. Your bias beliefs are getting in the way of logic. Iran always announces it is “mass producing” something it announces it in 2009 then 2011 then 2012. I assume it is a mistranslation because every time Iran produces a product they declare they are mass producing it, but then 2 years later they announce they have started mass production then another 2 years later they say they are mass producing it.

    Iran has a habit of employing this tactic to cause confusion. I assume in 2009, that Iran actually completed the first phase of R&D and was beginning to test the Sejill it was producing. Sejill probably underwent further modifications and enhancements. Then it went under further testing. The Sejill while being operational is probably not yet being mass produced in significant quantities.

    YMJ denies this entirely:

    Sejjil is not only operational, but its being mass produced, modified the whole shibang.

    This has nothing to do with being biased, or optimistic (which is what i referred myself as), it has to do with the fact that in 2009, things are completely different from 1989, or 1999, or even 2001!

    Many things can be tested on computers. Many systems have ALREADY been tested in other countries, and the information was passed over, or even leaked over.

    Again let me repeat, we have no idea how many times this missile was tested.

    All the sejjil tests could have been tested under the guise of a shahab 3 test, if your concerned about western intelligence would know about it or what not.

    Anyway, the bottom line is sejjjil is being mass produced (not 1000000 a day, but the numbers which are possible to build) and are operational.

    This is not being disrespectful about other countries military, it has to do with what we have seen and what they have announced. Logically, in 2009 things are completely different.

    And that is where the thread ends back in March, 2012…

    Bottom Line: The odds are there has NOT been a mass production of the referenced Iranian missile, certainly not in larger numbers than the existing Shahab models, and if it IS in mass production it is almost certainly after a minimum number of tests, thus likely producing a missile which has a CEP in the 500 meter range at best and probably in the 1-2km range. Which, without independently targetable cluster munitions, probably means a limited ability to damage hardened military sites. Even with cluster munitions, most US/NATO air bases have their aircraft in hardened bunkers. These missile might be effective against Saudi or GCC oil production or distribution facilities, however.

  163. kooshy says:

    I just saw this report in Fars News since it’s relevant to our debate on Iran- Iraq war, which I thought to post it here on RFI with a hope to get an “empirical’ tone sound once the coin has dropped down.

    For English readers sorry not to have time to translate but it is a report of a recent speech by Mohsen Rezai commander of IRGC during the “sacred defense” related to the war of 1980’s.

    وی با اشاره به اینکه یک وجب از خاک ایران در دوران جنگ تحمیلی از کشور جدا نشد، افزود: دشمن بعثی با کمک حامیان غربی و شرقی خود در روزهای ابتدایی جنگ دهها شهر و روستا را اشغال کرد و حتی بخشی از مرزهای مشترک ما با عراق از تهاجم دشمن در امان نماند.

    رضایی به شرایط سخت بیش از 2 میلیون و 500 هزار آواره جنگی در دوران دفاع مقدس اشاره کرد و گفت: در ابتدای جنگ فرماندهی جبهه‌ها بر عهده بنی‌صدر بود و به این دلیل آن موقع شاهد شکست‌های پیاپی در عملیات‌های مختلف بودیم تا اینکه بنی‌صدر کنار زده شد و اداره جنگ به دست نیروهای انقلاب افتاد و پس از آن شاهد پیروزی‌های پیاپی و آزاد شدن شهرهای تحت اشغال دشمن بودیم و حتی برخی از مناطق دشمن را نیز تصرف کردیم تا تنبیه شود و به فکر تجاوز به ایران نباشد.

    فرمانده سپاه دوران دفاع مقدس، با اشاره به اینکه جنگ هشت ساله ایران با عراق تنها جنگ در 300 سال اخیر بود که ایران از آن پیروز خارج شد، تصریح کرد: اگر در این جنگ یک وجب از خاک ما در دست دشمن می‌ماند ما اکنون در دنیا سرافکنده بودیم و حتی اگر بقیه شهرها را آزاد می‌کردیم باز شکست خورده بودیم و شهدا کاری بزرگ انجام دادند و دستاوردهای امروز ایران مدیون شهداست.

    وی با بیان اینکه برخی از افراد غایب در جنگ پس از پایان دوران دفاع مقدس طلبکارانه سخن گفتند، ابراز کرد: پس از پایان جنگ برخی سهم‌خواهی‌ و ادعاهایی داشتند و تهمت‌هایی زدند و از آنجا که رزمندگان دوران دفاع مقدس برای رضای خدا کار می‌کردند جواب آنها را ندادند و نمی‌دهند.

    رضایی بازسازی قدرت دفاعی ایران را از برکات دوران دفاع مقدس دانست و ابراز کرد: تجربه‌های رزمندگان اسلام در دوران دفاع مقدس موجب افزایش قدرت دفاعی ایران شد و اکنون با توجه به آن دستاوردها در فناوری موشکی از مرز 3 هزار کیلومتر عبور کرده‌ایم.

    http://www.farsnews.com/newstext.php?nn=13910910000609

  164. Castellio says:

    Neo, when you say “Best to remain at the nuclear capable level. It’s adequate as deterrence.” I agree.

    I think the Iranian government has thought through its current options extremely well by developing a break out capacity without building nuclear weapons and, in fact, having a fatwa against weapons of mass destruction. That break out capacity has already had an influence on those who think bombing Iran is a bad idea because it would force Iran into a “change of direction” to achieve nuclear weapons.

    A break out capacity is not only tied to enrichment, but to the entire weapon system, the triggering device, the delivery system, etc.. Iran can do this, and has a right to do this, while at the same time having its enriched uranium under constant international surveillance. This was all discussed at length years ago in this forum by Eric and Arnold, and I think Arnold’s position that Iran has a legal right (and an ability) to develop a break out capacity won the day.

    This strategy also gives Iran the moral highground, which is important when building international alliances. Neither the governments of Turkey nor Egypt want Iran to have nuclear weapons. A military rapprochment between those three countries is critical and doable, and if a nuclear-weaponized Iran deters it, it isn’t worth the price.

    And again, effective deterrence can be created without nuclear weapons. The ability to destroy Dimona and Tel Aviv by conventional missiles being, in American terms, the only relevant capacity needed, although it doesn’t hurt being able to close the Gulf or destroy Saudi oil fields.

    I also think it highly probable that the Governor is correct when he says that Iran will not “be allowed” nuclear weapons. I think that an accurate assessment of American-Israeli intentions and, to an unproven degree, capacities. I don’t think this is “fair”, given the threats facing Iran, but I think the Americans would absolutely move to bomb any known or suspected facilities if they believed a nuclear weapon was being assembled.

    I agree with RSH as to the over-riding mercenary values of US foreign affairs. There has not been in the US any fundamental questioning of the morality of its foreign relations. This lack of reflection or conscience has weakened the US greatly, and it has been many years that it has pursued an irrational, self-destructive path.

    So, clearly, I would not argue that Iran doesn’t have a right to nuclear weapons, nor that Iran doesn’t face Israel and the US, both irrational actors armed with nuclear weapons, I would argue, however, that developing the break-out capacity and other forms of deterrence is a much, much, better choice at this point than trying to put together a handful of self-limiting weapons.

    As to your other points regarding the lost opportunities of the Shah, I welcome your points. They are relevant and, to an extent, telling. On the whole, I’m not sure we are that far apart.

  165. James Canning says:

    Nasser,

    Iran would not be allowed to build nukes, even if Iran wanted to build them.

  166. James Canning says:

    kooshy,

    Both parties lost, in the Iran-Iraq War. No victor.

  167. James Canning says:

    fyi,

    Are you kidding? The US easily has enough ships, especially working with the UK, France, and other countries, to blockade Iran.

    Obama has made clear he wants negotiations to work. This means a deal between Iran and the P5+1. Otherwise, other measure will be taken if sanctions fail to stop Iranian enrichment to 20%.

  168. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Neo: “Does this piece from Reuters – zionism’s mouthpiece – indicate an important shift in Israel’s stance?

    ‘The Jewish state has said it would sign the treaty [NPT] and renounce atomic weaponry only as part of a broader peace deal with Arab states and Iran that guaranteed its security…’”

    Hell, no. The Zionist will never renounce its expansionist goals and thus they know there never will be a comprehensive peace treaty. Israel would only agree to something like that if it was totally assured of being in complete military control of the Middle East including Iran. That means Egypt, Jordan, Syria, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, the GCC. Iraq and Iran ALL being fractured failed states under complete US/Israel domination.

    Here’s the shorter version: They’re lying.

  169. Richard Steven Hack says:

    fyi: “And there will be no naval blockade; US does not have those assets.”

    That’s ridiculous. Just with the number of US/NATO ships in the region now, they could enforce a blockade. Just park them all at the mouth of the Arabian Sea and prevent Iranian ships from entering or leaving the Persian Gulf. Air power identifies the ships and you move to interdict them.

    I expect before that is done that the rumored “faux blockade” will be done, i.e., Iranian ships (and perhaps aircraft) will not be allowed to dock at any nation’s port that recognizes US sanctions. This approach would be far less effective but would not require US/NATO ships to take any action.

  170. M.Ali says:

    Fyi,

    “As I said before, in war, there is no substitute for victory.

    Accept that Iran was defeated in 1988 and apply Reason in order to understand why.”

    Fyi, can we agree on a comprimise?

    Can we say that in the Iran-Iraq War, Iran lost the war, but defended its territory against the invader, didn’t lose any lands, made no financial concessions to the invader for them to stop attacking, and caused the invader not attack again?

  171. M.Ali says:

    Nasser,

    “Have your arguments now boiled down to that Iran can face the threats facing her through conventional means? And thus you reject the absolutist claim that nothing other than nuclear weapons can secure Iran.

    Do I understand your views correctly?”

    Somewhat. What I need to highlight is that I make no absolute claims.

    All these are possible:

    1) Iran might be attacked while not having nuclear weapons
    2) Iran might be attacked while having nuclear weapons
    3) Iran might not be attacked while not having nuclear weapons
    4) Iran might not be attacked while having nuclear weapons

    Once we get rid of absolutes, then we make decisions based on weighing all our options and going with what we think will yeild the best profit with the least cost.

  172. Kathleen says:

    Is it my imagination or has there been a lull in the neocons incessant repetition of unsubstantiated claims about Iran in the MSM?

  173. kooshy says:

    fyi says:
    November 30, 2012 at 3:47 pm

    “As I said before, in war, there is no substitute for victory.’

    For the record, after so much write up and explanations I now can conclude that an “empirical” arrogance is depriving you to understand what victory is or means, let’s leave it at that

  174. M.Ali says:

    Neo,

    November 30, 2012 at 12:06 pm

    I don’t think the middle eastern countries really care that Israel has nukes. If you notice, aside from using Israel’s nukes as some sort of PR attack on it, there never really is any political manouvering to push Israel to remove its nukes. In none of the discussed peace offerings from the Arab countries (even non-directly by Iran) have they ever discussed nukes.

    Let Israel keep its nukes. Israel knows more than anyone else that they can’t really ever use it to attack its neighbours, because of the heavy retaliation it could encur. Anyway, thats what I think.

  175. M.Ali says:

    BiBijon, I loved your post on
    November 30, 2012 at 8:57 am

    Your post reminded me of a quote on an episode of “Dexter” I watched today, about how one should respect the person who is seeking the truth but to be wary of those who claim to have found it. Or something like that.

  176. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Muhammad Sahimi on AP, George Jahn, and the Fake Diagram for Iran’s Bomb
    http://original.antiwar.com/sahimi/2012/11/29/ap-george-jahn-and-the-fake-diagram-for-irans-bomb/

    Quote

    So who are Jahn’s “witnesses” for his latest “exclusive”? Ollie Heinonen and David Albright. Heinonen, who served until last year as IAEA deputy director-general for safeguards, is the man who made the first public presentation about Iran’s alleged nuclear weapon program based entirely on a laptop that no one ever saw. The credibility of the laptop – if it ever existed – and its essential premise and claims were refuted by Gareth Porter, Michel Chossudovsky, and myself. Consequently, Heinonen and others no longer refer to it when trying to make their case, even though, as I have previously pointed out, almost all the allegations made in the November 2011 IAEA report on Iran are precisely the same as those that Heinonen made in his February 2008 presentation to the IAEA Board of Governors based on the laptop. Heinonen, who often says that he is from Finland, perhaps implying that he is genetically neutral, recently joined the group United Against A Nuclear Iran, a lobby for Israel and the War Party.

    As for Albright, according to Jahn he “said the diagram looks genuine but seems to be designed more ‘to understand the process’ than as part of a blueprint for an actual weapon in the making.” That is the level of understanding of the president of Institute for Science and International Security, which is essentially a mouthpiece for Yukiya Amano of the IAEA.

    End Quote

  177. fyi says:

    Richard Steven Hack says:

    November 30, 2012 at 2:44 pm

    These are acts of desperation out of DC.

    And there will be no naval blockade; US does not have those assets.

    Nor will she be risking war during Mr. Obama’s second term.

    War – in my judegment – will come from the next US President – whomever it will be.

  178. fyi says:

    kooshy says:

    November 30, 2012 at 2:27 pm

    As I said before, in war, there is no substitute for victory.

    Accept that Iran was defeated in 1988 and apply Reason in order to understand why.

    There are Unkown and Unknowable factors operating all the time; some designate it as Chance, others as Fortuna, and yet others Divine Providence.

    Name it what you will, empirically this is an observable phenomenon.

  179. fyi says:

    Neo says:

    November 30, 2012 at 12:06 pm

    No, Israel’s weapons are irrelevant to Iranian security.

  180. Bussed-in Basiji says:

    kooshy,
    Forget about fyi and Drama Queen, they have complexes about the success of the IRI because it doesn’t fit into their world views. The fact that fyi constantly refers to “Reality” while not having stepped foot in Iran for 30 years tells you everything.

    I have repeatedly offered him to get in touch with a gentlemen who was a serf in the 1970s and is currently the duly elected chairman of his village council in Kerman province so that fyi can discuss the “nekbat” in detail with that gentleman. He refuses to do so which makes me wonder who here is fleeing from reality. Even on fyi’s holy issue of “freedom” alone, fyi loses when the matter is investigated fully.

    The Islamic Republic has been a success for Iran on all levels- materially and spiritually- and has led to a fundamental transformation of Iran from a mostly illiterate feudal society to an educated participatory society. And I repeat and insist that such a thing would have never happened with any sort of liberal political dispensation.

    The only thing that made it possible was adherence to the laws and ethics of Islam as taught by the Ahlul Bayt and as implemented by the Shia ulama and fuqaha- my God keep them as a blessing for all of us.

    And yes many western-beholden urban elites lost their social influence after the revolution- and many of them migrated to their true spiritual homelands in the west. Thank God we had some dahatis freshening up the gene pool when these arrogant aristocrats left. I’m saying this provoke my old pal a little, because you see he has a problem with all things from the provinces, can’t even fathom the thought that a dahati religious dude can be a successful minister- impossible!

    Like I said, for Drama Queen this is ersatz therapy, for fyi, I think he feels a bit guilty about some of the choices he made in his life concerning his homeland.

  181. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Amano claiming IAEA inspectors aren’t “safe” in Iran… More propaganda…

    Nuclear chief wary of Iran inspectors’ safety
    http://www.thonline.com/news/national_world/article_73b0e9cf-8c8c-5a5e-b30d-098f5f594745.html

  182. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Israeli Defense Chief Sounds Ready to Hit Iran, Thanks in Part to Iron Dome
    http://www.wired.com/dangerroom/2012/11/barak/

  183. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Iran may quit anti-nuclear arms pact if attacked: envoy
    http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/11/30/us-nuclear-iran-npt-idUSBRE8AT0JL20121130

    However, once again Iran’s officials confirm my attitude and reject Smith’s:

    “Soltanieh said nuclear weapons have no use and only creates vulnerability, and that any military action against Iran would not stop it from enriching uranium.”

  184. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Another day, another Iran sanctions bill passed 94-0.

    Senate Votes To Tighten Sanctions On Iran
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/11/30/senate-iran_n_2219144.html

    This time they’re sanctioning anything to do with Iranian shipping, including shipments of steel and other materials needed to build ships. The only thing Obama complained about was there was no provision for waivers so China could keep shipping its steel…

    “The sanctions would designate Iran’s energy, port, shipping and ship-building sectors as “entities of proliferation” and sanction transactions with these areas. The legislation also would penalize individuals selling or supplying commodities such as graphite, aluminum and steel to Iran, all products that are crucial to Tehran’s ship-building and nuclear operations.”

    Note that the next step after designating Iran’s shipping as “entities of proliferation” almost certainly will be some sort of naval blockade. I expect this to occur after the Syria/Lebanon situation is resolved, probably in late 2013 or 2014.

  185. Bussed-in Basiji says:

    Neo,
    Whatever you (falsely) accuse some people of, Jenabe Hajarian did 100 times worse in his time on the throne. He is mohreye sookhte in the worst way and thank God no longer relevant in the IRI today. Go find another hero.

  186. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Lysander: “If at this stage the Syrian government is fighting to hold the airport in Damascus, I do not see how it could hold off much longer.”

    It’s completely unclear what the state of the Syrian military is or the state of the insurgents. There is no comprehensive “order of battle” info available from any source I’m aware of.

    So it’s not wise to draw conclusions as to the state of affairs from one conflict area in the country. The Syrian military appears to spread out all over the country dealing with small groups of insurgents in different areas. This has likely made it difficult to concentrate forces whenever the insurgents are able to concentrate their forces. This is normal in insurgencies because the insurgents are more mobile and are the attackers whereas the government forces are usually in reaction mode. But it doesn’t indicate the relative military strength of the forces in toto or the likelihood of government collapse.

    The insurgency definitely seems to be making gains in various areas, but it’s hard to judge the overall impact based on the scattered and fragmentary news reports and whether those gains are being held by the insurgents in the face of counterattacks.

  187. kooshy says:

    fyi says:
    November 29, 2012 at 5:16 pm

    “Mr. Smith has already supplied responses in an earlier response to me:
    Smith says: November 29, 2012 at 12:03 pm”

    So, fyi here is what Smith’s “supplied’ response was which accordingly you agree with.

    “They still think they have won Iran Iraq war. Though Iran for the first time in 270 years did not lose any territory, but let’s remember the objectives of the war were not met. The objectives were very clear. Either complete destruction of Saddam regime or forcing Saddam to accept defeat and pay reparations.”

    Changing the goal posts does not changes the facts, Iran was not the initiator of the war therefore to win was enough to endure, when you are not the starter of a conflict presumably you have no plans or objective to achieve for war you have not started besides Iran was going through a chaotic internal power struggle there was no time energy, consideration or a plan for a militaristic foreign policy objective that much is clear, therefore all the objectives were the war’s initiators which as I explained in my earlier post non were achieved but you rather to ignore and not admit.

    ‘Even the war songs were based on it and that is why Khomeini referred to the peace resolution as the gallon of poison. The commanders of the war at the time had demanded more tanks, air crafts, navy ships and even nuclear weapons from Khomeini something he could not deliver.’

    You are informed enough to know war propaganda to boost the moral can’t be substituted as an objective in a defensive war, a common war propaganda was “the way to Ghods was through Karbala” now do you want to claim Iran’s objective in her defense was to invade Iraq, Jordan, all the way to Jerusalem therefore since Iranian military never reached the Ghods therefore that is enough to say they lost the war?

    “The military victory was never achieved, so it was a tactical defeat for Iran with very high costs.”

    Again since the Iranian side was not the initiator of the war the military objective was to defend the Iranian territory as well as preserving the revolution, Iranian sovereignty and independence all three objective were successfully achieved.

    “The indirect strategic benefits that came out of it, had nothing to do with Iranian planning or military skills one bit. It was all “divine miracle” and the blood of martyrs. It was not because of the Iranian planners smartness.”

    I thought you empirically thinking guys, were against relying on “god” and “divine miracles” in military planning and objectives, now you claim anything that came as a gravy was just a miracle and Manna from the god , now I can see your logic is very empirical of you as you usually like to profess.

    “If Iran had accepted ceasefire in 1986, 84 or 82, then no benefit would have come out of it. The benefits that came out of it was that Iraq had gone bankrupt by the end of the war and US abandoned it as it does with its allies so often, and then USSR broke up and could not support Saddam anymore at the right moment.”

    “If Iran had accepted “ Why do you think Iraq went bankrupt? It Must have been another “divine miracle” after Iran destroyed Iraq’s total oil production capacity early in war.

    “If by some chance the peace had come before in 1988, Saddam would not have been bankrupt and he would still have support of USSR, US and Arabs till today and being alive. He would have been harassing a weak Iran even today. But because of this Iranian divine luck, Saddam went bankrupt and then tried to take Kuwait and the rest. The divine intervention, then made sure, US looked at Saddam while Iran continued to live instead of being at the US cross-hair right upto 2003.”

    “If” and “chance” is not what happened or what the result is or was, as old Persian saying goes “ IF your mother was married to the Shah of Iran you would have been Crown prince Reza”
    To preserve your credibility on this site I suggest don’t attach yourself to martial you don’t bother to read.

  188. Bussed-in Basiji says:

    fyi,
    You are smart enough to know the difference between nuclear capability and an actual nuclear weapons arsenal. I guess we do agree on something.

    Again the fact that you don’t regret abandoning your homeland when it was attacked says everything about you and your “spirit”. I don’t claim to be good today but when it mattered I did the right thing unlike you. And yes I am certain that God will give me credit at least for this much. This certainty is precisely the difference between me and you.

    Neo,
    I’m glad that you hate me and yet agree with most of what I write. Mission accomplished.

    Remember that most secular and religious nationalists were/are sitting in Paris, London and LA while the medieval mindless thugs were/are defending their beloved Iran. And the next time will be exactly the same. Like I told your buddy, arrogant narcissists usually want others to do die for them.

    You are welcome to return to your homeland anytime and I will personally take you around your beloved Iran at my own expense and show you that you are wrong about your generalizations, evaluations, gratuitous insults and opinions.

    Smith/Qazvini/IQ 146/Sacred Defense Tomcat pilot/Nane Gharibam/Drama Queen
    For God’s sake, make your point and move on. Being succinct is a virtue.

    This site is not your personal “catharsis” therapy session. Please, go to a freakin’ therapist already, you really need it.

    Like I said, you make some good points but please cut the effin’ drama, narcissism, rudeness and arrogance. And if you don’t have the stomach for people telling you this kinda stuff then don’t post in such fora.

  189. Nasser says:

    M.Ali,

    Have your arguments now boiled down to that Iran can face the threats facing her through conventional means? And thus you reject the absolutist claim that nothing other than nuclear weapons can secure Iran.

    Do I understand your views correctly?

  190. James Canning says:

    Photi,

    You offer excellent advice to Iran. It should seek to become part of the “global economic establishment”.

  191. James Canning says:

    PB,

    Didn’t Iran compromise its effort “to show it has no nukes”, by trebling production of 20 percent uranium?

  192. James Canning says:

    Smith,

    Do you think “Turkey” could have kept its Arab provinces if the Ottoman Empire had not joined the Central Powers in their war against the Russian Empire? Or would they have been lost in a series of revolts?

  193. James Canning says:

    fyi,

    Iran is willing to make a deal with the P5+1. The question is whether Obama can allow a deal acceptable to Iran, given the power of the ISRAEL LOBBY to punish him (and the Democrats) for allowing a deal to be made.

    If Iran fails to make a deal with P5+1, there will be more sanctions. If sanctions fails to stop further Iranian enrichment to 20%, a blockade will be the likely next step.

    Your belief Iran can do as it pleases and work around the sanctions is simply incorrect.

  194. Neo says:

    To all,

    Does this piece from Reuters – zionism’s mouthpiece – indicate an important shift in Israel’s stance?

    “The Jewish state has said it would sign the treaty [NPT] and renounce atomic weaponry only as part of a broader peace deal with Arab states and Iran that guaranteed its security…

    “Iran is master of enrichment technology … it can easily replace damaged facilities,” Soltanieh said. But, he added, Iran is “well prepared to find a negotiated face-saving solution and a breakthrough from the existing stalemate”…

    Both sides now say they want to resume talks soon, after the re-election of U.S. President Barack Obama, and diplomats expect a new meeting in Istanbul in December or January.”

    http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/11/30/us-nuclear-iran-npt-idUSBRE8AT0JL20121130

    One major problem for such an eventual agreement: since no one knows how many bombs Israel has and where these may be, how can a credible effort at disarming the Apartheid state be effected? Or is this a South African type of scenario where the whites ensured that the country was disarmed of the bombs before power was handed over to the black majority?

  195. fyi says:

    All:

    I suspect this was an act of sabotage – just like the screw-driver in the late Mr. Mattei’s jet engine.

    http://news.yahoo.com/stray-bolts-blamed-iran-nuclear-plant-shutdown-russia-153107654.html;_ylt=A2KJ3CYq07hQO3AANa_QtDMD

  196. fyi says:

    Lysander says:

    November 30, 2012 at 1:58 am

    Communication lines can be broken by relatively few men.

    Likewise oil and gas pipelines.

    The aim is always the same; force the other side to comitt soldier to guarding them.

  197. fyi says:

    Neo says:

    November 30, 2012 at 4:12 am

    One must understand the creators of the Islamic Revolution in Iran.

    They were religious intellectuals and idealists that seriously believed that Utopia is just around the corner; only if Islam could be applied without interference from worldly and corrupt leaders.

    Per the Shia Tradition, since the death of Imam Ali, all Muslim political orders have been illegitimate; here was the opportunity to finally restore True Islam to its proper place in the world.

    [What Mr. Smith wrote about some of these leaders seriously considering re-selling weapons and disarming, is true. Among themselves, they even discussed what they would do with prisons - since in the new Islamic (Utopian) Order, there could be, almost by definition, no crime!

    All of Islamic histroy was irrelevant; the Omavid, the Abbasids, the Seljuks, the Mamluks, the Safavids, the Bhuids, the Ottomans, the Mughals.

    Theirs was the Muslim version of "End of History".]

    Next was the rank and file for whom Islamic order – outside of the Constitution of Islamic Republic of Iran – was their own mores and the Islamic Law in its most rigid forms.

    That was the birth of the Nekbat Islami – the Islamic Disaster – in Iran; which has been the bane of that country since 1979.

    Things would have been much worse had the late Mr. Khomeinin not issued his edict on the necessity of expediency and the distinction between primary and secondary principles of Islam.

    Almost certainly, without his radical break with 1400 years of rigid legalism, the Islamic Revolution in Iran would have been defeated.

    For by the second year of the Revolution it had become clear that rigid adherence to Islamic Law was going to destroy the state.

    This is a very long stroy and we have to wait for a few more generations of Iranians to go through the searing experience of their cherished notions being broken by a thing called Reality.

  198. Neo says:

    PB says:
    November 29, 2012 at 11:04 pm

    “Iran needs to have something the opposite side wants”.

    How about the following:
    - a hugely increased, safe and steady supply of oil and gas leading to significant lowering of energy costs for a disastrous US/EU economy in dire need of support
    - a prosperous market for western produce as an outcome of a peacefully growing region (moving away from western dependence on military exports to such a detrimental level)
    - friendship with muslims (a market significantly larger than China’s)
    - living free of the fear or foreign attacks (however minimal in reality, this has significant impact of life in the west)
    - significant political capital through loss of an evil empire image globally leading to a whole array of concrete gains

  199. Rehmat says:

    America’s leading foreign policy expert and Obama’s former national security advisor, Zbigniew Brzezinski, in a speech at the event organized by the National American Iranian Council (NAIC) and the Arms Control Association in Washington on November 26, claimed that US administration is lead by the nose by pro-Israel Jewish groups like a stupid mule.

    “I don’t think there is an implicit obligation for the United States to follow like a stupid mule whatever the Israelis do. If they decide to start a war, simply on the assumption that we’ll automatically be drawn into it, I think it is the obligation of friendship to say, ‘you’re not going to be making national decision for us.’ I think that the United States has the right to have its own national security policy,” said Brzezinski.

    “An attack on Iran would be an act of utter irresponsibility and potentially a significant immorality if the United States participated,” he said.

    He said military strikes on Iran, either by the United States or Israel, would be the worst available option to stop Tehran’s alleged nuclear weapons ambitions.

    http://rehmat1.com/2012/11/30/brzezinski-americans-are-stupid-israeli-mules/

  200. BiBiJon says:

    About all this Iranian nuke palaver
    ==========================================

    Rigid and all-encompassing world-views are a fertile source of confusion. A simple set of dogmas can provide great psychological comfort to believers, but they invariably clash with reality and thus provide a poor foundation for policymaking. Whenever you hear anyone offering up universal and unquestioned truths about [nuclear deterrence,] politics or society, your Confusion-detector should start pinging and you should hope that they never get close to power.”

    From “confusionism” ,http://walt(dot)foreignpolicy(dot)com/posts/2012/11/29/a_new_paradigm_for_international_relations_confusionism

    Warning to folks who think they’re being reasonable
    ————————————————–

    The reason Hamann and Herder and the early German Romantics were the first to grasp the significance of Hume’s critique of the Age of Reason is because they saw how it not only limited the jurisdiction of reason, but indeed left no room to think of Rationalism as a system or even methodology that was no more ‘rational’ than any other, including, of course, religious ones. One of Hume’s critiques was that if you hold a position based on reason, and you are asked to give your reason for that belief, and you give it, you are then susceptible to being asked to provide a reason for *that* reason et cetera ad infinitum, so that you must ultimately admit that you have no more reasons to offer and that therefore your “reason” is ultimately unreasonable.

    From our one and only UU @ http://waliyicislam.wordpress.com/2012/09/12/turtles-all-the-way/

    ———–

    Paranoia about others’ intentions is a disease without end. Nothing will ever grant you a sense of security once you’ve been bitten. Just look at the military/security expenditure of the world’s lone super-paranoid. There’s not a country far enough, poor enough, and historically non-aggressive enough not to be deemed a national threat.

    Faced with a range of eventualities which are all equally possible regardless of what you do to deter, or prevent, then the wise choice has to be to stick with humane principles.

    It is sad to see Iranian universal idealism be tortured into some sick fascistic nationalism. Shanameh is an universal narrative, that is its enduring beauty.

  201. Neo says:

    Castellio says:
    November 29, 2012 at 9:12 pm

    “FWIW, thank god, in the recent exchanges, for BinB, M. Ali and Kooshy.”

    What about me?! :)

    It is true that “It suits the enemies of Iran to present her as a failed state…”, but how important is the view of Iran’s enemies? Surely Iran should set her own agenda, as the ‘enemies’ will always push their own propaganda until they come to their sense and make a deal (not far off at this stage in my view).

    “That the Islamic Republic has done a better job than the Shah ever did (or would have done)…” is not necessarily true. If you look at the Shah’s land reform programme of the 1960s (White Revolution, he called it) you will find a solid foundation for not just redistribution, but also for launching a comprehensive economic development programme, similar to how the Koreans and the Taiwanese started their growth drive. Two things derailed the programme (and led to the political chaos and repression of the 1970s, though he Did manage to reduce the power of landowners as he meant to do). First, the clergy were deeply in bed with the landowning class, and joined them in protecting their own property (vaqf). Second, the White Revolution included the extension of voting rights to women, and this really got the clergy and traditionalists up in arms. It’s the issue that propelled Khomeni to the forefront of the ‘resistance’ and led to his exile, for they could not openly resist a fairer distribution of land.

    The same programme introduced a ‘national education service’, by requiring graduates to teach in schools in remote areas for a period. The Islamic Republic extended the same idea to health.

    None of the above is meant to argue against your core message: nuclear weapons would be a bad idea. I agree. One of the main reasons is the question of the most efficient and effective strategy for security. Iran is far too outnumbered in this area, and cannot catch up other than through enormous costs, while at the same time the future of military power is in space and supersonic missile technologies (Obama said the same). It’s far more strategic to continue on the current path of building defences against such weaponry through developing Iran’s own space, missiles and missile defence systems. Nuclear energy can contribute to this defence mechanism, but nuclear bombs would only be useful as a last resort, and even then as a prelude to mutually assured destruction. Best to remain at the nuclear capable level. It’s adequate as deterrence.

  202. Photi says:

    Strawman sockpuppet

    A strawman sockpuppet is a false flag pseudonym created to make a particular point of view look foolish or unwholesome in order to generate negative sentiment against it. Strawman sockpuppets typically behave in an unintelligent, uninformed, or bigoted manner and advance “straw man” arguments that their puppeteers can easily refute. The intended effect is to discredit more rational arguments made for the same position.[26] Such sockpuppets behave in a similar manner to internet trolls.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sockpuppet_(Internet)

    Obviously this tactic does not have to take on any pre-conceived form. Smith offers the complementary ideas the neo-cons are using to force a war on Iran. Needless to say, i am highly suspicious of him.

  203. Photi says:

    I have no knowledge on Smith other than what he has said here, but it should be kept in mind by responsible people that he may have been sent here by the Mossad to make this fake bomb diagram seem more believable. If you have the pro-Iranian crowd talking about how great an idea a nuclear bomb would be at the same time this diagram is released, then perhaps influential people or powers would be persuaded of Iran’s ill-intent.

    I fall on the side of caution and say this has all been orchestrated. Unsuccessfully.

  204. Neo says:

    Smith says:
    November 29, 2012 at 10:28 pm

    My dear Smith, you have opened so many important issues here, I am not sure where to start. Here’s an attempt at a ‘short’ rational response that I hope will do justice to this enormously intricate and (for many of us) emotional subject.

    First, I did not mean to accuse all Basijis of the same barbaric Zionist attitude as our not-so esteemed Bussed in Basiji here. The great majority of them are merely serving their own aspirations by getting a leg up through Basiji fast track mechanisms for education and a career. This is similar to how many poorer citizens of all countries join the military. Only in Iran, this can start at school age. State security duties in exchange for cash/career. Islam only serves their pockets and future careers here.

    Second, these thugs do not represent or protect the revolution. My own first cousin was a senior commander in the Revolutionary Guards before he passed away. In fact, he was among its original architects, and was close to Khomeini. He was no fan of these thugs. Neither are people like Sa’id Hajarian and countless others who managed to get over their revolutionary anger and grew into mature and responsible political activists concerned with real issues rather than obsess with the invisible mahdi and other such myths. So let’s not confuse the minority, self-serving Basiji thugs with the majority of genuine revolutionaries.

    Third, every political movement has to use an ideology and some measure of propaganda. I fear you have swallowed some of Iran’s own propaganda as fact. For one thing, Islam has no tenable link with Iran as a country. Iran was there before Islam and will be there regardless of it. The Islamic Republic has used the ‘failure’ of ‘secular’ leaders in Iran to boost its own standing, claiming so much for itself that had nothing to with ‘secularim’ or ‘islam’ at all. The loss of Iranian territory and power over a period of around 3 centuries was a direct result of the spread of capitalist relations across the world. This led to a physical isolation of Iran from world trade because of expanding maritime trade routes that simply bypassed Iran. Prior to this Iran was sitting pretty as a physical bridge between the East and the West. The Ottomans (i.e. Muslims) played a big part in this too. Iran was an impoverished country stuck in a feudal mode without the capability to defend itself adequately for some centuries. This has nothing whatsoever to do with islam or secularism. The Ottomans on the other hand kept pace through and were only finally defeated by a coalition of virtually all other major global powers. Still Turkey remains well ahead of the curve compared with Iran, especially when we consider that they have not benefitted from oil rent.

    By the 1950s, Iran was ready to make a comeback – as we were always destined to, and as our long history demonstrates – largely on the back of oil revenue. This process of modernization was skewed by the power of the clergy. But this is simply coincidence, and certainly does not indicate any kind of providence. In fact, there is a good case to be made for the idea that Shi’ism in Iran has been a manifestation of nationalism, starting with our dear Ferdowsi himself. Contrary to westerns claims, I’m of the view that one of the earliest manifestations of ‘modern’ nationalism is to be found in the Shahnameh. We practically invented modern nationalism, and islam was just an ideological tool that happened to serve the purpose. I hope we will soon grow out of it, like we did with previous religions.

  205. Neo says:

    fyi says:
    November 29, 2012 at 8:39 pm

    “This is the direct result of Legalism; they all end in a type of proto-fascism.”

    Don’t they just! I remember a day not all that long ago when I was stuck in one of Tehran’s near-permanent traffic jams, in the scorching heat of summer, when suddenly a gang of these headbanded thugs appeared from nowhere on bikes and on foot with clubs and other standard thugs’ weapons, weaving through the cars and physically beating up people who had ‘unislamic’ short sleeved shirts or dress. I simply couldn’t comprehend the logic. But I could certainly feel the terror. What ‘freedom’. What a ‘revolution’…

  206. ExposingNeoConWarmongeringStooges says:

    fyi says:
    November 29, 2012 at 11:24 pm

    The article’s general conclusion and recognition of the severe consequences of an attack on Iran are good but its portrayal of the Iranian missile program is ridiculous. Among many errors it asserts that the Sejil is not in production when dozens have been displayed in multiple military parades since 2010. It asserts without providing evidence that because supposedly a relatively small number of tests of the Sejil have been carried out since its public announcement this means it is somehow still in development. It wrongly refers to the Shahab3 B as the Shahab3 D or M which do not exist. Its claim of a reduced range for the Shahab3 is also unproven and contradicts most available sources.

  207. Lysander says:

    OTOH, Richard, your link states that the rebels are using child soldiers. Presumably they would not do that if they had plenty of adult man power. It may be that the Syrian army has managed to wear down the rebels as well.

    What I do not foresee is a western backed government successfully placed in control of Syria. Destroying a government is one thing. Becoming a government is another. Sadly, there will likely be a Lebanon ala 1980s situation.

  208. Lysander says:

    Richard Steven Hack says:
    November 29, 2012 at 11:53 am

    Richard, perusing the news today I red this at press tv

    “Syria says it has secured the road leading to Damascus International Airport, hours after heavy clashes between militants and government forces in the area led to the closure of the road.”

    http://www.presstv.ir/detail/2012/11/30/275295/syrian-military-retakes-airport-road/

    This does not seem like positive news. If at this stage the Syrian government is fighting to hold the airport in Damascus, I do not see how it could hold off much longer. It did not even require an overt NATO campaign or no fly zone. An endless stream of Salafi fighters with at least some domestic support was enough.

  209. kooshy says:

    Smith says:
    November 29, 2012 at 8:59 pm
    fyi:

    “Since I do not talk to Kooshy anymore, tell him this:”

    Smith

    Look- posting a comment in a blog doesn’t need a third party to tell me what you wrote I can read for myself, I wonder if you understand what you write?
    I don’t know or care if you are a MEK or not don’t make no difference to me, all I said same kind of extreme policy recommendation now days is coming out of the MEK and militant opposition who are knowingly supported by the US/Israel security services with a task to weaken and destabilize internal Iranian security and confidence and I stand by my statement. You can comment and make any policy opinion you want but when you get rebuttal don’t hide yourself behind being threaten that’s not a mature debate. Fyi has been prophesying this type of opinions on this blog for years now, as far as I remember no one ever threaten him.

    I don’t care if you or fyi or anyone else wants or not want to engage in a debate with me, arrogant one liner prophecies are not reasonable or proven to be debated, often not worth to reply. As I have done in past years, if I have an opinion on matters related to Iran I will post here, you or anyone else can rebuttal and correct me if I am wrong and not conforming to their opinions and ideas I welcome that.

    Your idea of making nukes in secret, and test supposedly one bomb the day after you left NPT at best is childish, where would you get your HEU to make your bomb? is it going to come out of your secret closet without IAEA knowing, or is it that you plan to make your HEU after you kicked the IAEA out, if it is the latter for sure you are issuing a chapter seven visa for the enemy to come for a not so friendly visit. I don’t believe you understand or think of what you write.

    Once again like is said in our beloved Persian language ننه من غریبم بازی در نیار Translation “ don’t try to be a drama queen”

  210. fyi says:

    Smith says:

    November 29, 2012 at 8:59 pm

    My understanding, based on publicly available Internet sources, has been that Iran has all the required materials for building nuclear weapons.

    There was a rumor that Iran, in fact, had obtained HEU fom Russia sometine in 1990s although I do not recall reading the quantity.

    I agree with you that US will attack massively from the air – but she would need to gather all her air assets from all over the world and gather them in Persian Gulf and Sea of Oman.

    I would say sometime past 2019 when there is a new President in the White House.

    In the meantime, the focus must be on overcoming the Siege; which will erode as time lapses.

  211. fyi says:

    PB says:

    November 29, 2012 at 10:59 pm

    Iran will continue to trade with the non-Western world, by hook or crook.

    It will take a very long bitter and serious effort for Iran to defeat the Axis Powers Siege War – I have every expectation that she will previal, but have no proof for that.

    Iranians will not negogiate with US, EU, P5+1 etc.

    The time for that is past.

    Axis States are at war in Syria, in Iran, and in Afghanistan.

    Their proxies are at war in Iraq – against the Shia Iraqis and Iranians.

    War is joined on multiple fronts and cease-fire is years ahead of us.

  212. Sineva says:

    Richard Steven Hack says:
    November 29, 2012 at 4:04 pm
    Thank you Richard I needed a good laugh today,and while neither sept 11 or the usa`s squandering of money on israel are humorous I can just picture conspiracy theorists reaction to this revelation

  213. Photi says:

    Smith, you are not a serious person. if you were, you would be more constructive in discussion. You should come back when you can be less dogmatic. You ain’t all that.

    Your vitriol towards the Islamic Republic tells us everything we need to know. Your kind are a dime a dozen. Nothing but traitors in sheep or wolf clothing, whatever suits your needs.

  214. PB says:

    I agree with Smith:

    “Then a deal like the Nixon-China can be made with Iran.”

    It is unfortunate but I believe it has come to that. Iran needs to have something the opposite side wants, as I said earlier. Trying to show “we have no nukes” has only encouraged more sanctions, not less.

  215. PB says:

    Negotiations for Iran while new sanctions are enacted every week is no different to the Palestinians negotiating with Israel while the latter continues to grab land every day. And as such, Iran has been reduced to the status of the Palestinians, sitting across the negotiating table without any bargaining chip at hand. The recent Gaza war and Hamas use of Iranian weapons does nothing for Iran’s negotiating position.

    What Iran needs to do, now that she has lost all international trading capacity and is being strangulated economically, is to withdraw from all negotiations until all sanctions are lifted. Iran must protect its chips. For one thing they must stop believing that there is a “deal” to be had with the 5P+1. These negotiations are for show and the ultimate goal will be regime change and war for all of us.

    The only path to achieve anything peacefully is for Iran to sit at the table with something the opposite side wants. Iran must enrich at maximal capacity and none stop. Iran must also explain to its population how is its membership in the NPT and the IAEA benefiting Iran’s rights and interests when all Iran has to show are sanctions no nations has suffered in history. Even Cuba has always been able to trade with Europe (just that Cuba has nothing to offer anyone economically).

  216. Smith says:

    fyi:

    Dear, it is amazing to watch that their logic has deteriorate to a mere argumentum ad hominem of abusive nature. They are going paranoid. He is MEK. She is MEK. They are MEK. Every one is MEK. Only we are good and then ending only I am good. This made me remember this funny cartoon: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kzlVODquxJ8

  217. Smith says:

    fyi says:
    November 29, 2012 at 5:25 pm

    That is why I believe Iran has the opportunity to create a new civilization. The ground is ready.

  218. Smith says:

    Neo says:
    November 29, 2012 at 4:56 pm

    Well, I do not like him and his cousins much either. I wish they had not got themselves so much into corruption and money business, specially lately. But the fact has to be stated. Iran’s secularist armies in the past 270 years were useless and were losing Iranian territory after territory. They were a bunch of cowards. If it was not for their incompetence Iran would have been at least twice bigger than today extending from black sea to Indian ocean and from Aral to the other side of Arvand. Unfortunately their fighting efficacy never exceeded that of a rug tag thugs.

    All they could do was negotiate with the opposing army and give up Iranian territory but proudly keep wearing shiny uniforms and medals. An army that can not keep a country from shrinking is the most shameful thing in the world. The military history of Iran in the past 270 years is one of deep shame. From Anglo-Persian war to Russo-Persian war to occupation during world war II. These are some of the remaining scenes from the last shame in that history, on which all Iranians should weep. I wonder where the generals and admirals of Iran were that day: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EMHVCtQ76Bw

  219. Smith says:

    Persian Gulf says:
    November 29, 2012 at 6:44 pm

    - Well, that is how and open and intellectually mature nation operates. There will be critics always. No person or system can have 100% support. It would be stupid if it did. The better systems tolerate and can engage with their critics. That is how a democracy works. Nasser has his own qualities, I have mine, you have yours. We can not be substituted for each other. Each one of us is unique. Trying to prove that I am some how better than Nasser is really pathetic in my opinion. More than 10% of people in United States do not recognize United States government.

    We have to learn to live with such differences. Trying to prove something what is in some one else’s heart is really the most stupid thing which is one of point I criticize Iranian civilization and the political culture for. If I want to prove anything to you or to Nasser, I have to do it via my actions. Not trying to prove he/she is MEK in his/her heart. That is the absurdity which made me so angry on this site. And remember this, that is if you are a believer, that even God does not punish anyone for his/her intentions, only for the deeds DONE. This is very important. If a member of MEK comes and has not killed anyone, and renounces his/her membership then he/she should be accepted fully with open arms and lots of love.

    That is the way to go. I am not saying put the guy in charge of Iran’s air defense. No. I would not even appoint myself in that position. Just like you can not appoint an illiterate malijak to do pediatric neurosurgery. Every field has its own standards that must be observed. But it does not mean that we have to be aboos and akhmoo with each other as some malijak try to be thinking of themselves as masoom and of others as yazid. This mentality is wrong and pathetic. If you want to prove something, try to prove it with your character, action, love and sacrifice with lots of patience towards your target audience. A few moments of proper caliber changes people’s lives. Years ago, there was a conference on medical sciences in Tehran and a few doctors from South Asia who had were basically into human biochemistry field had gone there.

    They told me their story outside of Iran without knowing I am an Iranian. Basically they were so much impressed by Iranian culture. What had happened was this: These guys get on the public bus. A few minutes later, every one is looking at them abit curiously which makes these guys awkward. They do not know what is going on since back in their home countries, there is a money/ticket collector roaming in the bus and collecting fare. After a while, a lady takes out four tickets out of her purse and deposits it in the ticket box put at the back of the bus. These were four doctors. Not even a word was spoken. It was all smiles. The guys came to know about the Iranian system of fare collection.

    What the lady had done, had so much effect on these four doctors that they were telling about it to every one applauding “the advanced Iranian culture”. That is how you do it. With your own action. But if you preach sacrifice and your own cousin is in import business because your brother is a malijak, then I guess it will not have much effect. Respect others and leave the judgement part to God. You are not here to judge people who they are. Maybe they are even better than you. I guess my message is clear. Judge less, do more and love everyone.

    - They have certainly thought about it and probably even acted on it. That is not the point here. The point here, is that with all these sanctions, people should know why they are sacrificing so much and what is at stake and why it is important to never give up the nuclear program. This latest sanctions were specifically designed to make people directly suffer and up rise against Iranian government putting pressure for Iran to give it up in talks with US. Now the Iranian media can not educated the people about why their life is on the line if they prefer lower meat prices to uranium enrichment since that would mean Iran is building nukes. But people should know their sacrifice is making Iran stronger and that is why it is important for them to be patient. It is kind of battle of wills. And Iran must win it.

    - NB is just a tool. To take maximum benefit out of it you have to have proper diplomacy, independence and bravery. The purpose of tool is to make you do things that you can not do with empty hand. You need both the NB and the will to be free in order to keep your independence against the neo-colonialists. International law is dead. So is “international community”. Just fire power protects women and children on planet earth. This is how western societies wanted it to be. And this is how it came to be. The ideal world of Nietzsche and Fukuyama.

  220. Smith says:

    Photi says:
    November 29, 2012 at 6:25 pm

    Good for you. Bet with your children’s lives on that. Neo-colonialism is very much alive and as powerful as ever. You guys think that you can challenge these world masters and then act like nothing has happened. I hope the Iranian planners have a plan B ready in some underground bunker because if they do not, they should have watched more closely what is coming out of their mouth. Human history is one of wars, loot and plunder. Go and read it. International economic integration? What is that? Some kind of joke? Iran is under sanctions and getting marinated for her eventuality. Chickens in slaughterhouse have better comprehension of events to come. I am amazed by the persistence of you guys trying to disprove the falling universe around yourself despite my best efforts to show you the butcher and the his bloody hands. But I guess, in chicken world logic works differently:
    http://www.cartoonstock.com/newscartoons/cartoonists/mba/lowres/mban665l.jpg

    http://corncommentary.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/10/funny-chicken1.jpg

    http://s3.amazonaws.com/corpwatch.org/img/original/poultry.jpg

    .

  221. Jay says:

    Smith, fyi,

    All tradeoff calculations are subject to change. However, at this time, there are sufficient non-nuclear deterrents to keep things in check. Asymmetric responses in a target rich environment can be surprisingly effective.

    James,

    based on your reply, some may question the degree of care you practice in reading and comprehending.

  222. Castellio says:

    FWIW, thank god, in the recent exchanges, for BinB, M. Ali and Kooshy.

    It suits the enemies of Iran to present her as a failed state only surviving through authoritarian control by militant fanatics seeking world domination. It is that narrative in which the “need” for nuclear weapons fits most comfortably.

    That the Islamic Republic has done a better job than the Shah ever did (or would have done) of diversifying the creation of wealth, redistributing that wealth, and caring for the education and health of its people, is the most important fact its enemies want hidden.

    If one truly believes that armed-to-the-teeth Israel is locked in a downward spiral of racism and hubris, why wish the same Likudnik mentality on Iran as a Shia fortress following in the noble footsteps of …. North Korea.

    Privatizing the Iranian central bank, as FYI suggests, or sending Iranians abroad to splash money around and “go big”, as Smith suggests, would only undermine the the strength of the IR, which is thoughtful and balanced social investment in the future of its people. That, compared to the insane profligacy of the militant west, is its greatest weapon.

  223. Smith says:

    fyi:

    Since I do not talk to Kooshy anymore, tell him this:

    1- “why Iran was not directly attacked by a nuclear state in past 30+ years while resisting both eastern and the western hegemonies?”

    Simple. Because such a hegemonic power only goes to war as a last result. Such a power will first try to arm twist, then use coups, then incite civil war, then use its proxies and then ever tightening of sanctions and continuous demonetization and then it goes to war directly. From the history I have watched, except the war all have been done to Iran. By both East and West. They even used WMD on Iran.

    Iran’s current internal stability is because Iran is sovereign and people see the government as a true government and not a puppet. The moment this government fails to protect them, things are going to change. That is how wars have been fought since eternity. Tranquility of today does not mean the guarantee of tranquility tomorrow.

    I had nowhere said that Iran should announce that it will build nukes in the year 2019 and subsequently get attacked in 2018. There is no point in announcing that and inviting an invasion before you can handle. The announcement of Iran’s nuclear weapon program should be via an underground nuclear test, the night after pulling out of NPT. I suggest for the test to be scheduled on a Thursday night so that people can celebrate late into night without having to worry about going to work tomorrow. It means Iran will have to pull out of NPT on a Wednesday. So be watchful of Wednesdays. It might happen anytime. I also propose for it if possible to be done on a date adjoining other national holidays eg. Nowroz holidays and then declare test day a national holiday which combine with the other national holidays, it will make them longer. So watch the days before and after the national holidays too specially those coming after Wednesdays.

    2- Iran does not need anyone’s support, taarof or roodarvasi to take decisions of its national interests. The same Venezuela after Chavez, God knows where would stand. Iran has to keep its independence and the power to keep that has to come from within and not without. Other people in the world should look up to Iran and take inspiration and get their support and strength. They should look up to Iran for trade, science and technology. It is a shame that Iranians have to sill look outside of Iran to get strength. Iran is not North Korea. Iran has a vibrant culture, civilization, language, history and aspirations. North Korea can not even normalize its relations with US before first asking for permission from China. So no comparison there.

    I get angry and depressed when Iran is compared to this and that. That is why I stopped watching TV news since suddenly out of nowhere, a dehumanizing and demonizing TV report on Iran pops up and frequently compares Iran with THIS and THAT. I am tired of this and you are also under the influence of such media, that is why you do not know what you are talking about.

    The comparison is pathetic. I would rather stick with my own facts and figures. I would rather remember that one of the greatest minds ever walking on earth got so influenced by some old Persian poems written by an Iranian that he wrote his own “West-östlicher Diwan”. I would rather remember that there were people like Dr. Iqbal Lahori. Some one that who despite being western educated and having never been to Iran, was so much influenced by Iranian culture and civilization that he wrote his magnum opus in Persian. I would never accept the white men’s superiority over Iran even at the cost of trade.

    3- MEK are traitors. They tried to do a coup in Iran and then they tried civil war before going into Saddam camp. But those damages were very little and small in comparison to the damage that they caused by telling the world about Natanz. If they had not done that, probably Iran would have nukes by now as IAEA says, Iran stopped its weaponization program then. If Iran ever gets invaded and like Iraq with Iran having no nukes, then MEK, has won the day. Specially now that they are the official Iranian opposition recognized by United States.

    Welcome to reality. If MEK is against something, then it must be something good. You accused me of being MEK, I can accuse you back being MEK since it is MEK that does not want to see a nuclear armed Iran. But I am not that cheap. I rather speak my mind and let others decide for themselves. It is a pity that people do not know even their recent history. I am not talking about going and reading the Russo-Persian war or Anglo-Persian war. At least the history that has happened in your life time. That would suffice for you to make the right and wrong decision.

    4- The rest of your mumbo jumbo on this issue, does not tally with situation on the ground. Iran is fast losing time. If it was 2004, I would not care and would not write anything. But with US withdrawal from Afghanistan, Iran is going to be the only target in the whole world for the NATO. That makes me uncomfortable specially with the kind of media war going on against Iran demonizing people of Iran. Iranian people now have to demand it. So that the western people also know that their propaganda that a few crazy mullahs have taken Iranians hostage and are torturing little girls as well as building nuclear weapons is just a lie. Because the attack is coming. So Iran better be prepared for it. It is no more a probability. It is a certainty that Iran will be attacked at some point whether directly or indirectly.

    And I am not Chalabi. Your Chalabi goes by the name of Rajavi and she is very much against Iran going nuclear and having a credible defense. Because only then Iran will be vulnerable to an attack. Let’s not kid ourselves. Saddam was just a small thug. Arabs are not capable of any fight. Zero. Zilch. And he ground us to halt because he just had a minimal technology edge over us. Imagine what US/NATO can do. Imagine if they hire a local Atomic Saddam to do the job. The pretexts are many. A dime a dozen. The last time it was Arvand, this time will be something else. I do not see, Iran being prepared for it. And worse than that, Iran does not have even deterrence.

    5- A direct US war with Iran is not going to be an ordinary one. US will try to come in heavy. They will use massive air power and use their air superiority to bomb the shit out of Iran. Alot of people in Iran after getting bombed day and day out and night and night out for weeks and months might change their mind, just like Serbians did. You think Tehranis are going to just watch as they are being bombed. They will expect their government either to stop the bombing or to answer back. Then US might move in slow, take for example Khuzestan which US is fully capable of doing.

    Once it has control over Bushehr, Iranian oil fields and pushing back the local population, it might set up a puppet government there, recognizing it as a new country and offer a ceasefire to Iran. Will Tehranis accept the ceasefire or will they watch as whole of Tehran and all Iran’s power stations and inudustries are dismantled by aerial bombing? Will Tehranis accept to live without electricity. Because the first thing US does is taking out power stations, water treatment plants, TV/Radio stations, telecommunications, airports, train stations and all industries and storage facilities. How long do you think Tehran will stand in defiance? One week, one month or one year?

    My estimate is three months, all things being equal. Rape is the easy part. Dismemberment of the remaining Iran into fiefdoms is going to be the difficult thing to watch. Bravery is one thing. But getting things done is another. Nukes without bravery is nothing, as you can see in Pakistan. Bravery without nukes is nothing as you will find out if Iran does not make the right choice. And please do not bring this human rights and international law and the rest.

    These will not save Iran. The only thing that can save Iran is massive retaliatory fire power. Since Iran can not field thousands of aerial sorties each day for several months (actually Iran’s total sortie per day capability is said to be in single digits) and does not have modern air defense, large numbers of artillery systems, fool proof C4I and the rest, I do not see how Iran is going to defend itself. The attacking countries be them, US, Nato, Turkey or Pakistan are not Saddam. They are immensely powerful even the impoverished Pakistan can beat the hell out of Iran. You claim to be brave enough to walk on mines, so do Taliban (trained and made by Pakistan army).

    You claim to have missiles so do Pakistan. You claim to fight for Islam so do they. Saudi Mullahs will support them fully and assure them to go to heaven and will invite the families of the soldiers to come to Mecca and Medina for free. In addition Pakistan has a fairly modern air force that can beat the hell out of near non functional Iranian air force as well as nukes. They have even more armor than Iran with their best tank being T-80 which is said to have even better armor protection than the standard Russian army T-90 tanks. Saddam was easy and it took us eight years to just stop him. Try doing that with Nato and its puppets all around you.

    6- Your argument to that US has never invaded this and that so it will not happen to us is BS. It would be like saying US has never invaded nations whose flags have 59 colors. The fallacy of your argument is similar to the “unexpected hanging paradox”. You are trying to argue that a dreadful thing will not happen. But in fact you are clinging to the straws there. In fact it is a sort of argumentum ad ignorantiam trying to imply that because a much more powerful and unpredictable force has not yet raped a nation with these characteristics, then it will not rape Iran too.

    That is not an argument. It is a fallacy leading to the death and massive destruction in Iran. I would rather put my bets on nuclear weapons than some random rants that this or that will not occur because the little plankton eating red fish in the sea said so. That does not make me comfortable. I do not know about Iranians. But I urge them to be on the safe side.

    7- Actually Pakistan is secured. After 9/11, Iran got so scared that some people in Tehran had wet their pants. They were afraid to be pointed out as culprits. That is why all hardliners went underground while beautiful young girls weeping their eyes out, held candle vigils and their pictures were broadcast. As I said, do remember at least the living history. Almost all the leads of 9/11 investigation were either going through Pakistan, or into Pakistan or out of Pakistan. Imagine if Iran would have been in the same situation. If Osama had been discovered to have been living next to IRGC headquarters. I am sure, the shit would have been bombed out of Iran. Pakistan despite being puppet can not be controlled like a puppet anymore.

    Since it got its nukes, the puppet is increasingly becoming autonomous and is acting weirdly not responding to the strings all the time. And also remember if a few drones do attack inside Pakistan and the Pakistani leaders do not do anything, it means they do not have the power. In fact, that is an illusion. Those guys that are being bombed are the same wahabis who are trying to hard to have their own wahabi revolution in Pakistan. The top wahabi mullahs are trying their best to take over and have their fingers on nukes. They see, the current Pakistani state as a puppet and a secular godless regime. As per reports, the drone attacks are being coordinated between Pakistani air force and US. So it is not like Pakistan is being attacked. Far from it.

    The generals in Pakistan do not want to be perceived as doing the “necessary killings” on behalf of Americans which are actually for the benefit of the secular Pakistani generals who love British style wind and dine. So they let the Americans do it. The situation is complex and is can not be simplified as you guys do. Pakistan might be very unstable at the moment. But that instability has its roots somewhere else and is not because of the nukes. I do not want to explain the situation of Pakistan to you since it will turn out to be a book on itself but let me assure you, that you do not know anything Pakistan and I know every bit about their history and their society, culture, right down to their local customs. And it is not like what you are seeing.

    Nukes have been good for Pakistan. They have cashed foreign aid from it, prevented an attack on themselves and probably will threaten their neighbors tomorrow if they perceive it to be in their best national interests. That should scare the shit out of a country like Iran, that is the most demonized, and dehumanized nation on planet earth. Iranians are basically like the Red Indians of a few centuries ago. The hunger is really the issue in Pakistan. At the moment, most of Pakistani public loves Iran except some extremist outfits like Lashkar Jangavi or Sipah Sahaba who are crazy about Iran and killing Iranian to the point of fantasy and fetish. But it was the father of Pakistani atomic program that gave the atomic technology to Iran, and still as per the latest polls, some 85% of Pakistani public support Iran to have nuclear weapons (highest in the world, even higher than Iranian public).

    But the public are strange creatures and can change their mind with a few days of targeted propaganda on TV and in mosques. I am baffled how can Iranians not be worried. Specially with Saddam experience in living memory. It is good to be the best of friends with Pakistan. Like brothers. But also remember this that once an entity is too powerful but is hungry and the next door neighbor, brother and friend is cooking nice foods everyday, the powerful neighbor might get agitated some day. History is full such events. Read them. The whole moral of the story is this: Do not bring up Pakistan example, something you do not know anything about. Worry about yourself instead.

    8- With nuclear weapons Iran is not going to be isolated. Do not bring such assertions without any evidence. You are just bringing in western propaganda to the discussion. Most of the Arab public support a nuclear armed Iran. So do Pakistanis. Once Iran attains that status, the public will follow where the power leads. The nukes are power status symbols. So Iran’s influence will actually increase in the region and beyond. Even among the public that are enemy to Iran eg. Saudi wahabis, the effect is going to be positive. Such public will put pressure on regime in Saudi Arabia to show some balls and develop a Saudi bomb which will never happen since the regime in Saudi can not do anything without first asking for American permission.

    In addition they do not have any infrastructure to develop their own nukes and even if they had a wahabi revolution, US will never allow them to have it as they know how crazy these people are. So by going nuclear, you will put the Saudi regime in a very awkward position, their only viable defense is going to be to ask Americans to make military bases in the kingdom. The regime will be seen by the public as impotent with Shia portion of Saudi population getting a new status and prestige along with a new boldness. And do not give me this crap that Saudis are going to get three bombs from Pakistan. It is never going to happen. US will not allow it. Pakistan does not intend it. Saudi will not get much benefit from a few static number of nukes that can not replace if it ever uses them, and there is no benefit of nuclear deterrence if you have a few nukes that you can not announce their existence to the world since you got them from some one else.

    There is not much to be gained in terms of game theory and nuclear deterrence if Saudis try that path. Their only viable path is to ask Americans and NATO for protection of the kingdom which will only prove to their own people, all the Arabs and the rest of the world that the regime is puppet and impotent. So Iran is not going to be isolated. Rather, Iran will be too powerful to be kept isolated, specially a nuclear Iran sitting across the remaining oil reserve of the world. US policy will change to containment of Iran similar how US is behaving to China, Russia, Pakistan and India. Then Iran can negotiate a deal with US.

    An honorable one for the both sides. US can keep Saudi desert if it wants. Just keep its hands off Persian gardens. Sanctions will disappear. The whole point of sanctions will evaporate. Iran can even accept two state solution as it had proposed in 2003. It will not need Hamas anymore to “protect” Iran. So in a way, it is going to be good for Israel too. Every thing is not dark. Things can move forward in any direction, Iran chooses them to move forward as long as Iran has the power and the deterrence to keep itself safe. So even Mideast peace is possible.

    9- As for my criticism of Iranian government, you can go and read them again. All of them are valid. A certain segment of society having access to the power corridors in the state have formed a mafia and are making lots of unfair money. This view is shared by almost every normal and ordinary guy on the street, that is if you ever actually go and travel on an Iranian street. There is no denying facts. There are good people and there are bad people. The important thing is to make sure, the good people are at the controls. Without criticism, all governments will go corrupt given the time. Criticism at least on technical ground should be allowed and encouraged. Otherwise there will be no difference between the system you are trying to defend here and the cult of Rajavi.

    10- Grammar and spelling are not needed anymore. We are moving towards a “postliterate society”.

  224. fyi says:

    Neo says:

    November 29, 2012 at 4:56 pm

    This is the direct result of Legalism; they all end in a type of proto-fascism.

    Without accepting the absolute freedom of the individual in God, that is the inevitable and deplorable consequence.

  225. fyi says:

    Bussed-in Basiji says:

    November 29, 2012 at 6:00 pm

    Your spiritual state has certainly been on display in this forum for all to wtness.

    As for you knowing the mind of the Almighty; we shall find out, shan’t we?

    And I have no regrets.

    Mr. Safavi’s statement is only bravado, nothing else.

    I am confident that others have expalined the necessity of nuclear capability to Mr. Khamenei.

  226. Persian Gulf says:

    Smith:

    well, I am not that dedicated to this website to go over most of the points you made in your very long posts. that was the reason I only mentioned some general points. and it’s not your posts only, I usually ignore Hack and ExposingNe…’s posts, not because of any personal reason but because mostly they are all over the place and it’s kind of confusing, anyway.

    I agree with your point of forgiveness. But that is different than forgetting it altogether. if you think somebody like “Nasser” came to believe the election results after 2.5-3 years, the period that has effectively consumed Ahmadinejad’s second term, you are mistaken if not naive. He probably see it beneficial to accept Ahmadinejad here because Mahmood is almost finished and soon will be somebody else in that position. I can say probably 90% of those who initially didn’t accept the results were uninformed/misled and corrected themselves once truth became known to them. Your point can be absolutely true for them. but there were 5-10% who intentionally didn’t believe it. and worse agitated to the point of endangering the very national security of Iran that you claim to care about, then I believe trusting them for the state’s affairs is stupidity. I believe somebody like Nasser is in that category. these people can’t be trusted no matter how nice you describe it. I am not saying IR should make life miserable for them. I just say let these people have their life, let them talk, bark …whatever as much as they can, and just don’t allow them to once again come to the fore. it’s like MEK thing. if you seriously think that kid of people should be allowed to even influence decision making, I would friendly recommend you not to enter any political affairs. there are things in political life, like any other aspect of life, that can not be compromised. period.

    you give the impression that only you became aware of the need for NB, if you know what I mean. as if IR that has developed the technology to this point and accepted all the pressures to this day didn’t notice it or was clueless for the implications of having the program altogether. do you seriously think somebody like “M.Ali” ,that while sitting in Iran can read the west probably equal as you and I (if not better), is unable to grasp what you say? I think, and I can only assert something here and nothing more, that if Iran is able to make few nuclear bombs in less than a couple of months, she should withdraw from NPT, make the bomb (even without actually testing it, though I am in love with the mushroom cloud myself :)), and let the world have their guess. but I have no clue if Iran is there or not (you won’t have expected me to say it here either, even if I knew). and even while making a big mushroom cloud, Iran should loudly say it’s only for peace and stability in the region by inviting all her neighbors to the event, it’s not our intention to make more, we won’t attack anyone with it and blah blah…. Please be advised that a Clint Eastwood style was to some extent counterproductive in the U.S public opinion as clearly seen in the last U.S election.

    It seems to me that nuclear bomb is not by itself a guarantee for not being attacked. it’s probably one third of the safety factor. I think Pakistan is a good example in that respect. Libya, and before that Iraq, were attacked perhaps because there was an internal aspect to the attack which is another one third of the issue. Yugoslavia clearly had that aspect. It could be divided even with NB regardless. the remaining part is the aggressor’s situation. Cuba and Argentina were not also attacked by nuclear weapon.

    anyhow, just ease up a bit.

  227. Photi says:

    Smith,

    Seriously man, quit being so dramatic. You are the one doing most of the insulting. You come into this forum and start telling us we are all a bunch of dumb wussies and then wonder why we are not beholden to your brilliance. Maybe it is because you are not the peach you think you are.

    Why did the GW Bush administration expend so much international goodwill lying to the world trying to convince us of the Iraqi WMD program? You are wrong to think international opinion does not matter at this crucial moment.

    We currently have a world showing resistance to another Israeli or American war in the Middle East. Undergirding this resistance is the belief by important international actors that Iran does not have a WMD program.

    In my opinion it would be irresponsible of Iran to take away this part of the resistance. Even if most of us in the ‘anti-war with Iran’ crowd can agree that a nuclear-armed Iran will not pose a threat to world peace, other more war-philic people will not see it that way and will also be able to convince certain other powers of this threat.

    Given the power disparities, perhaps the best deterrent for Iran would be to become an integral part of the global economic establishment. Mutual interests in the smoothly functioning global market will produce the longest lasting peace, inshallah.

  228. ExposingNeoConWarmongeringStooges says:

    Richard Steven Hack says:
    November 29, 2012 at 3:27 pm

    “Unbelievable… Totally divorced from any semblance of reality.”

    Well you are the acknowledged expert on being divorced from reality…

  229. Bussed-in Basiji says:

    Smith/Qazvini/IQ 146/Sacred Defense Tomcat pilot,

    You’re right the past doesn’t prove anyhting for the present. Like I said the only thing that matters is if you will sacrifice when the battle starts. Arrogant narcissits usually don’t- they want others to die for them. Work on that a little.

  230. kooshy says:

    M.Ali says:
    November 29, 2012 at 3:19 pm

    Smith says

    “This decision cannot be made by those who are fearful and scared and it needs men of steel to make this decision.”

    Ali-

    This is the exact line now days is being used by the opposition and the traitor terrorist MEK group to implement that the current Iranian government is incompetent, therefore we need a regime change to be secure.

    Obviously this line and this policy recommendation (Iran needs to be secured by having a nuclear arsenal) can’t be prescribed by US/ Israel so this task is assigned to their terrorist clients MEK and others to make Iranian feel insecure all due to incompetence of the Iranian government in power. This is exactly what I meant in my earlier reply to him which he ignores to reply since he wants to make believe I threaten him, so much for that.

  231. Bussed-in Basiji says:

    fyi,
    As far as my spiritual state, contrary to you I can say on the Day of Judgement that I did not abandon my homeland in its time of need. On this issue my spiritual state is “better” than yours and you might have some regrets, agreed old pal?

    Also, who says we don’t have strategic weapons that are deterrents? The fact that you and Smith/IQ 146/Sacred Defense Tomcat pilot don’t know about it doesn’t mean they don’t exist. Again yours and his analysis has a fundamental and basic flaw which is that you are not familiar with the reality of Iran’s military capabilities and only use the info that is openly available for analysis.

    Bottom line: you and Smith/IQ 146/Sacred Defense Tomcat pilot grossly overestimate the probability of a US/proxy nuclear attack on Iran. Is it possible? Of course. Is it probable? No. Does this possibility necessitate building and maintaining a nuclear arsenal and all the negatives this entails? No.

    What’s more Tomcat pilot then uses this gross overestimation to splurge all his personal oghde, complexes and mental issue about everything in his life and Iran into long narcissitic tomes- “catharsis” as he puts it himself. That’s really annoying to put it mildly. Don’t enable him old pal.

    Remember simply bombing is of no value to the US without an occupation of some kind later. And here it is where the arazel jumping on mines becomes more important than a thousand nuclear bombs.

    As Sardar Safavi used to say: “Every one of us is a nuclear bomb”.

  232. James Canning says:

    M. Ali,

    Yes, Saddam Hussein thought he obtained a “green light” to attack Kuwait. From April Glaspie, the US ambassador to Iraq. Who badly blundered by giving Saddam the impression the US would not respond militarily to an Iraqi occupation of Kuwait.

    What Glaspie meant to convey was that the US did not side with either Iraq or Kuwait, in their dispute re: slant-drilling from Kuwait into Iraqi oilfields.

  233. James Canning says:

    Kathleen,

    Bravo, Paletine!

  234. fyi says:

    Smith says:

    November 29, 2012 at 2:54 pm

    All in good time Mr. Smith, all in good time.

    There already is a nascent alliance linking Iraq, Syria, and Iran – not counting Lebanon.

    But you are right; the people of these countries and their leaders must throughly be disabused of their notions of UN, “International Community”, “Global Village”, “Common Norms and Standards.” etc.

    In Iraq, people hate UN and US and EU.

    In Afghanistan they add Russia to that least.

    In Pakistan they hate US.

    Thanks to the Axis Powers Siege War, those with friendly thoughts about US and EU are discredited.

    Bahrain is not too far behind.

  235. fyi says:

    M.Ali says:

    November 29, 2012 at 3:09 pm

    I am afraid that I do not believe that any of those options will prevent attacks against Iran.

    For Iran to re-build her conventional forces it will take at least $ 25 billion per year over at least a decade.

    And that is if she could purchase arms.

    She cannot buy much of anything – you saw what happened with a meagre 5 SS-20 batteries.

  236. fyi says:

    kooshy says:

    November 29, 2012 at 3:42 pm

    Mr. Smith has already supplied responses in an earlier response to me:

    Smith says: November 29, 2012 at 12:03 pm

  237. fyi says:

    M.Ali says:

    November 29, 2012 at 3:07 pm

    Iranians cannot build certain things in the time frame that would matter.

    Take self-propelled artillery: you need to be able to manufacture diesel engines.

    That is not a trivial undertaking.

    Japanese will not sell engines to Iran, nor Germans, nor Russians, nor any one else.

    And that is just a small piece of the whole.

    South Koreans tried for years to do internally, I think they still buy engines for some of their vehicles from Japan.

    Likewise, Yamaha provides engines for many car and truck manufacturers.

  238. Neo says:

    Bussed-in Basiji says:
    November 29, 2012 at 6:40 am

    BiB, I’ve been reading your posts for a while, and have a real problem with reconciling the fact that I agree with a lot of your actual positions on various issues with the fact that you are quite a despicable, nasty basiji type – the kind of thug that gives ‘islam’ (or whatever silly religion fundamentalist people like you like to prostrate their empty heads to with such violent conviction) a bad name, and stops people like me from returning to my homeland. In all honesty, a large section of the Basiji thugs in Iran are quite similar to the Brown Shirts of yester-Germany. The Germans did not so much grow out of their inhuman brutality, as they got bombed out of it. I sincerely hope that your type don’t lead my homeland to the same fate. But I think crazy idiots who think they own my country just because they were a small part of a much larger army of nationalists defending their land have really gone too far, especially some 30 years afer the event, to never be able to ‘get over it’. After all, any decent nationalist would do just the same, without god even mattering in the matter. But in your cursed head, you think you have a line to some ‘god’ that will put you above the rest, and makes you feel ‘just’ and ‘right’ only because you are inhuman enough to force your minority ‘religion’ (that apparently serves your pockets and those of your masters real well) onto peace loving people. The weakest thing about your miniscule imagination is the fact that you confuse Iranian values with Islamic ones, and you mistake your willingness to be extremely brutal with ‘righteousness’. Pretty damn dimwitted in reality. Still, I would not normally vent such disgust with your type in a western forum like this, for I care far more for the good land and people of Iran than to expose such divisions. But seeing how incredibly uncouth and confused you are, I thought I needed to redress the balance. Grow some brains and a tiny bit of humility, especially toward those whose country you and the fundamentalist ilk like you have stolen from the great majority of a caring, loving and humble Iranian nation. To hell with your nazi version of islam. you are TOO much like the zionists. Rather vile.

  239. Smith says:

    Sakineh Bagoom says:
    November 29, 2012 at 8:54 am

    Addition to my previous comment:

    Also do not forget that it is much more difficult to shoot down an ICBM than MRBM, technically since ICBM will have higher terminal velocity and higher terminal altitude.

  240. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Unbelievable…The US taxpayer is paying for Israel’s military command centers…including one labeled – are you ready for this? – wait for it – “Site.911″!

    U.S. overseeing mysterious construction project in Israel
    http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/us-overseeing-mysterious-construction-project-in-israel/2012/11/28/e5682d8e-38b6-11e2-a263-f0ebffed2f15_print.html

  241. Kathleen says:

    Anyone else watching Abbas at the general assembly? Pink Floyd Roger Waters rocked the assembly this morning with facts and outrage. Schumer joining the congressional apartheid team to try to cut off Palestinian aid in response to the push to this much needed vote. Roger Waters really ripped the US “bullying” in the region

  242. kooshy says:

    fyi says:
    November 29, 2012 at 10:30 am

    “You must distinguish between stated and un-stated aims of wars.

    For example, Axis Powers stated aim is to stop nuclear enrichment in Iran.

    Their un-stated aim is to destroy Islamic Republic.”

    Fyi –

    When debating on a pointed obvious subject please stop using your usual one liner prophecies, besides we have read enough of each other comments to know when one makes a blunder not to try to cover with a BS. As is said in our beloved Persian language, please don’t try to relate farts and temples they don’t have anything to do with each other.

    First of all who said their intended aim from day one was not to destroy the Islamic revolution of 1979 everyone knows what their intend was or is, what form of warfare they use has nothing to do with their intend and goal.
    You claimed that Iran lost the war with Iraq since she was not able to destroy the Iraqi Baath regime, I replied Iran as a defender all she had to do was to stand up and don’t lose an inch including the 1974 boarder agreement, that’s for the Sad and Dom part of that war. On the broader western aim initiating and encouraging “Saddom” to attack Iran one was to possibly destroy Iranian revolution and independence and sovereignty which did not happen so technically Iran won, two was to shield Muslim Arab western client states from the spread of the Islamic revolution, which initially due to Arab nationalism was successful and delayed to a point but as we all know now that no longer is the case. The funny part is both countries that were initially setup on western and eastern side of the Iran with governments supported by east and west both had to be later invaded by their supporters to stop their unique form of anti-western fundamentalism, and both leaders cooperated with western nations and their Arab supporters had to be eliminated.

  243. Richard Steven Hack says:

    “They want a solid military nuclear deterrence so that they would not have to keep worrying and playing games with entities much larger and more powerful than Iran.”

    Yeah – like Russia and China aren’t playing games…like North Korea isn’t playing games…like Pakistan isn’t playing games…NOT.

    Unbelievable… Totally divorced from any semblance of reality.

  244. M.Ali says:

    James,

    “Saddam had a “gut feeling” the US would not respond militarily to the Iraqi invasion and occupation of Kuwait. ”

    I thought one of the reasons was that Saddam told USA that he would attack Kuwait and when they didn’t tell him to NOT to do, he thought they were indirectly giving him the green light

  245. M.Ali says:

    Smith posts, “I hope something good will come out of all things we do. That is the most important. To think for oneself and learn from mistakes. Keep it up.”

    Why are you acting like you are on some sort of Holy Internet Crusade?

    Also, regarding your other posts (which you ignore what everyone has said), please understand that people who are arguing not to go for nukes at the moment is not they are scared and are wimps.So, stop saying things like, “This decision can not be made by those who are fearful and scared and it needs men of steel to make this decision. ” Its childish. I don’t want decision makers in Iran to choose paths for Iran based on the size of their balls, but logical, cost-profit analysis, risk-assesment look.

  246. Smith says:

    Sakineh Bagoom says:
    November 29, 2012 at 8:54 am

    There is no contradiction there. The risk of nuke tipped ICBM still remains deadly. No anti-missile system technologically possible even on paper including the star wars is 100% accurate. But such a system erodes the risks posed by non-nuclear missiles much more than with nuclear missiles. Imagine yourself to be the Sheikh of a fiefdom protected by such a system. Your opponent has 100 missiles pointed at you. But then you along with one of your allies that has nuclear weapons and is on the west or on the east of your opponent go to war with this opponent over two disputed islands while having received guarantees from two other nuclear powers living in two other continents.

    The 100 missiles of your opponent would have been very deadly for your small fiefdom but, your anti-missile system is 90% accurate and shoots down 90 of those missiles and only a “manageable” 10 hit some targets in your desert but then you take your islands which you believe to have belonged to your maternal great aunt’s grand daddy. Not to mention that your allies sophisticated air force could go in and bomb the hell out of the opponent and destroy alot of missiles on the ground.

    Now. Try doing that with the same opponent having those 100 missiles with 10 of them being nuke tipped. The mathematical probability dictates that more than one nuke will get through and obliterates the fiefdom and since the opponent is really “evil” and had salted its nukes with Cobalt, the fiefdom desert is now contaminated with radioactive cobalt making the fiefdom a nuclear wasteland and access to the oil fields impossible. Will you go to war now despite having anti-missile system in place: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Salted_bomb

    Fourth Generation warfare? Do you know even what it is? It is terrorism and suicide bombing. Now, you as an Iranian might be happy for it happening in places like Afghanistan but I can assure you, that within Iran it is not going to be pretty at all. Your opposition to nukes is based on your childish emotions and your prejudgments rather than on rationality and logic. The nuclear weapons can prevent large human life loss in Iran by preventing the coming war into the Iranian borders and cities. But if you choose to fight this “fourth generation warfare” by becoming Taliban, then be my guest. It is successful and Afghans have been doing it for the past several decades but then you have to forget about peace, development and progress in the country since it will necessitate a perpetual civil war: http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_U7UfpQNlsGc/SqglSC63sGI/AAAAAAAAFiI/zX48IjTpa2s/s400/ScreenHunter_08+Sep.+09+17.30.gif

  247. M.Ali says:

    ““Million of paths that Iran could take” – you said.

    Please share 3.”

    In an earlier post I shared many options Iran had in strenghtening her defense system and increasing the cost for countries that want to attack her. In brief, proxies, allies, investing in internal technology, sleeper cells, supporting oppositions in countries that are ripe for revolutions, PR campaign to resonate more with the Sunnis, create economic dependance with other countries, create energy dependace with neighbors, etc.

  248. M.Ali says:

    “The industrial capacity to build those systems does not exist in Iran.

    Nor will they be sold in sufficient quantities by any state to Iran.”

    Are you claiming that Iranians are incapabale of building such an industry?

  249. ExposingNeoConWarmongeringStooges says:

    Richard Steven Hack says:
    November 29, 2012 at 11:56 am

    And here Hack is linking to articles based on the absurd statements of the IEA which is a US and EU controlled think tank that never provides an explanation of the sources that it uses in compiling its “data.” Yet another example of how the West is simply manufacturing data in its ongoing futile quest to make people believe its failed sanctions are “working.”

  250. ExposingNeoConWarmongeringStooges says:

    Richard Steven Hack says:
    November 29, 2012 at 1:42 pm

    No, contrary to your fantasy Iran is not “weak and impoverished.” If it was, than your attempts to predict the future would long ago have been proven true. The fact that Iran is not “weak and impoverished” is what has and will continue to protect it from attack by the US. And unsurprisingly you still fail to understand the difference between defense and offense. Iran does not need to have huge numbers of “modern” planes, tanks, etc to defend itself from US aggression. Iran has huge numbers of modern missiles, drones, mines, patrol boats, and well trained special forces. In fact it is much better to have 50 or 100 highly accurate and destructive missiles than the few planes Iran could produce with the same money.(Iran does have a huge well trained artillery force that has recently developed laser guided shells so that statement is completely wrong).

  251. Smith says:

    fyi says:
    November 29, 2012 at 10:20 am

    What you are proposing is like a NATO for such countries. This is not possible. Not at least now, specially with immature status of ideology and civilization in the sunni states. And such a NATO alliance would need a central powerful entity as US is in NATO both to found such an alliance and lead it. Iran can play that role but it does not have the military power and the nuclear weapons required for the job.

  252. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Juan Cole describes this lecture as one of the best on Iran’s nuclear program that he’s heard. I find the lecturer crappy and he makes a number of serious errors by taking some of the IAEA recent reports seriously such as with regard to Parchin. I was not impressed.

    Machowski: We’re already at War with Iran, though Ayatollahs have not decided to Weaponize Nukes (Video)
    http://www.juancole.com/2012/11/machowski-were-already-at-war-with-iran-though-ayatollahs-have-not-decided-to-weaponize-nukes-video.html

  253. Smith says:

    Jay says:
    November 29, 2012 at 12:35 am

    That is right. Many Iranians are getting tired of this game of cat and mouse and want it ended. They want a solid military nuclear deterrence so that they would not have to keep worrying and playing games with entities much larger and more powerful than Iran. Such games are having a huge cost for Iran.

    The only economical way remaining for Iran to keep itself safe, is nuclear weapons and Iran does not have to pay much for it since it has already made all the investments and is already under sanctions. So Iran will not lose much but will gain alot. Once Iran goes nuclear, the geopolitical map changes and the world has to choose either to go to a nuclear war with Iran or accept Iran as a nuclear power and come to terms with it. History says, the world will choose the second option which is also the sane option. Then they can not keep demonizing Iranians and keeping Iran under sanctions since an unstable, angry and vengeful nuclear Iran sitting across over half of the world’s oil supply is in no one’s interest. Then a deal like the Nixon-China can be made with Iran.

    As you implied earlier, Iran can work in secret make an arsenal and then pull out of NPT and test it. Simple.

  254. James Canning says:

    fyi,

    You apparently call for a revival of the Seljuk Turkish empire. I wonder how many Persians in Iran would welcome rule from eastern Anatolia. Or from Damascus.

  255. James Canning says:

    Yesterday, The New York Times called upon Obama to withdraw all US troops from Afghanistan by the end of 2013. No one sees this as significant?

  256. James Canning says:

    fyi,

    You claim that “in war, there is o substitute for victory”. In fact, in many wars, both sides lose.

  257. James Canning says:

    kooshy,

    Condoleezza Rice played a crucial role in helping the neocon warmongers set up the invasion of Iraq in 2003. A different National Security
    Advisor might have changed things.

    G W Bush was duped by the neocon warmongers, and Rice helped them to dupe him.

  258. James Canning says:

    Germany’s foreign minister said his country would abstain from voting on the Palestine measure being approved today in the UN General Assembly. A mistake, in my view.

  259. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Pentagon Still Sees Iran as Threat No. 1
    :http://www.military.com/daily-news/2012/11/28/pentagon-still-sees-iran-as-threat-no-1.html

    Pentagon Sees Weak, Impoverished Iran as Threat No. 1
    :http://news.antiwar.com/2012/11/28/pentagon-sees-weak-impoverished-iran-as-threat-no-1/

    This quote ought to make everyone happy… :-)

    Quote

    “It is a matter of faith among many American politicians that Iran is the greatest danger now facing the country,” writes Micah Zenko, a fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations. “But if that is true, then the United States can breathe easy: Iran is a weak military power.”

    According to the International Institute for Strategic Studies, Iran’s“military forces have almost no modern armor, artillery, aircraft or major combat ships, and UN sanctions will likely obstruct the purchase of high-technology weapons for the foreseeable future.”

    Even if Iran did have nuclear weapons, which it doesn’t, “the threat to the US homeland would continue to be minimal,” according to Zenko.

    End Quote

  260. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Qatar arms Syria militants with antiaircraft missiles: Report
    http://www.presstv.ir/detail/2012/11/29/275157/qatar-arms-syria-militants-with-missiles/

  261. James Canning says:

    fyi,

    Some of Bill Clinton’s advisers wanted to restore normal relations between Iran and the US, or at least to improve them. Remember the proposed Conoco oil deal with Iran, that Aipac and other extremist groups succeeded in blocking.

    Some of Bill Clinton’s advisers wanted to injure Iran in order to “protect” Israel.

  262. James Canning says:

    Nasser,

    Saddam Hussein’s generals opposed the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait because they were sure it would mean the US would drive Iraqi forces out of that country. Saddam had a “gut feeling” the US would not respond militarily to the Iraqi invasion and occupation of Kuwait. Saddam obviously guessed wrong, and his greatest act of stupidity was in not agreeing to evacuate Kuwait even when an army of 500,000 was gathered on the borders of Iraq and Kurwait to ensure he got out. Gigantic ego was at the heart of the problem.

  263. James Canning says:

    Jay,

    US intelligence agencies continue to agree that Iran has not decided to build nukes. This is the key fact. Some who post on this site apparently want to help Aipac and other extremist groups pressure US intelligence to change this assessment.

  264. James Canning says:

    M. Ali,

    I of course agree with you that North Korea had zero risk of a US attack, unless NK invaded South Korea (or did something equally stupid).

  265. Smith says:

    Persian Gulf says:
    November 28, 2012 at 10:45 pm

    If you have not read all my posts because of your lack of attention span, how can you be so much judgmental?

    - In 2009 I had condemned the opposition to accept the poll results before the official Iranian media did it. It was not because, I was more intelligent than most. It was because, I had already read about the polls conducted before the election and I already knew even the rough result of the election, so it was not a surprise to me when the result was announced. Every factor was in favor of Ahmadinejad with fossils not having done their homework for the election. Not even the result percentage was different from the pre-election polls. Ahmadinejad had a clear upper hand. In fact the Iranian media (TV and print) contributed for people to be misled more than BBC or CNN. They did intentionally or unintentionally created an ambiguity which caused a large segment of people to doubt election result. So trying to blame Nasser here is futile. Being judgmental of others is easy but judging oneself is difficult.

    We can not continue to punish people in 2059 for a mistake they did in 2009. All we can do is educate the people about the event so that they know to make the right choice and why some choices they made were not right. Degrading people for their mistake is not going to make them learn. Giving them facts and the power of analysis does. Trusting the people does. Letting people learn does.

    - You are right about the religious people because the secularists have sold themselves out instead of remaining true to Iran. They have replaced a metaphysical God with the US as their god. So it is no surprise there. Iranians have always defended Iran since 5000 years ago. Whenever Iran got defeated, it was not because of Iranians but because of the leaders and planners. But all this does not substitute for the nuclear weapons. Neither nuclear weapons substitute the bravery of people. Iran needs both. Your points are moot.

    The Samurai people did not accept the gun and the technology since they believed the only honorable fight is by hand and sword. They were a brave people. But the national policy can not be made on bravery of a people alone. Iran needs peace of the mind and the pride that nukes bring to international relations. Keeping Iranian nation on its toes for the next war just because they are brave is not a good policy. For Iran to progress and becomes advanced it must have peace of mind so that the economic forces can be directed to build the nation.

    - Read my previous posts. People might have been angels two decades ago but they get corrupted when you give them a post without they having the skills for that post and trust them blindly. This is one of the reasons the corruption in Iran has spread. In Iran corruption is top to bottom, that is the top is corrupt so the bottom gets corrupt too. 25 years ago, it was inconceivable for a cop, judge or bureaucrat to take bribes.

    Corrupt people existed back then too, but they were in minority and the public did not perceive the system to have become corrupt. Today, it is reverse. It is inconceivable that a cop, a judge or a bureaucrat does not accept bribes. There are good people too, but they are in minority. The people perceive the system to have become corrupt. The root of this corruption comes from nepotism, favoritism and blind trust in people who are supposed to be good: mullah, basij and pasdar.

    - You are right. No body can give guarantee that I wont get cancer next year and die. But I can reduce the chances by stop smoking, reducing or stopping my consumption of red meat, eating lots of vegetables and fruits and lead a stress free and healthy life style. Still there is no guarantee but even if I do get cancer then, I would not blame myself. I would take it as my fate. I had done everything I could to protect myself from cancer/HIV/TB/Malaria/HCV etc. The important thing is to be proactive and do the right thing and then leave it to the fate. Not leaving it to the fate and doing nothing. Now a malijak here or there might be afraid to make the right choice since it goes against his/her personal interests and instincts. Because the malijak might be afraid of the American goddess but then that only proves my point. Since malijak is no standard by which Iran should set its policy.

    - That I absolutely agree with. I just came, here since it seemed to be a more intelligent place. It is very difficult to intelligent people on the net. The net is filled with scum. And I was worried about Iran and needed to voice my concern, specially since I had no friends with malijak mafia network in Iran to tell them about my concerns. So I thought to release some of that concern and worry here. Kind of like catharsis.

  266. Smith says:

    fyi says:
    November 28, 2012 at 10:47 pm

    Then Iran has no other option but to develop nuclear weapons. Iran should start doing it secretly as North Korea, India, Pakistan, Soviet Union, UK, France, US, Israel and maybe even more countries had done so, all secretly. It will not be discovered. If it does get discovered, deny it. If they insist, you insist back. Cooperate with Pakistan and North Korea as before. Make Iran into a nuclear weapons state and secure the Iranian national interests and pride: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_states_with_nuclear_weapons

    This decision can not be made by those who are fearful and scared and it needs men of steel to make this decision. It can not be made by those whose bravery comes from their claim of a blood relation to a cousin who had gone to the front in 1981: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yMt5DlO4BVw&feature=player_detailpage#t=397s

    And for those who are afraid of US so much so that they can not make a decision in the direction of future of Iran’s national interests because of that fear: http://www.fararu.com/images/docs/000016/n00016577-r-b-000.jpg

  267. Smith says:

    fyi:

    These guys can just hurl abuse and look down upon the rest. This is their modus operandi. They think they are being smart that way. How do they know we did not fight against Saddam? Maybe we did but do not want to show off. Maybe we were toddlers at the time. Maybe we were tomcat pilots. Who knows. Being so much judgmental about others is really nauseating. That is why people do not respect them anymore. The people who went to the front, did not do so that their cousins can trump all merits and sit on a top bureaucratic post setting up medicine importing policies instead of a some one who was skilled for the job. If they did go to the front for that reason in order to make the goddess of nepotism happy, then shame on them. Because many others did not.

    People change. Some one who was a good guy 3 decades ago, might not be today. Alot of good people become corrupt because of their children eg many Ayatullahs became corrupt because of their children. So it is not like any one who has gone to the front or has an ammameh is a good guy and fit for any job. This is their fallacy. The jobs have to be give according to the skills and abilities not on the basis of nepotism and favoritism so prevalent in Iranian society today.

    They still think they have won, Iran Iraq war. Though Iran for the first time in 270 years did not lose any territory, but let’s remember the objectives of the war were not met. The objectives were very clear. Either complete destruction of Saddam regime or forcing Saddam to accept defeat and pay reparations. Even the war songs were based on it and that is why Khomeini referred to the peace resolution as the gallon of poison. The commanders of the war at the time had demanded more tanks, air crafts, navy ships and even nuclear weapons from Khomeini something he could not deliver. The military victory was never achieved, so it was a tactical defeat for Iran with very high costs. The indirect strategic benefits that came out of it, had nothing to do with Iranian planning or military skills one bit. It was all divine miracle and the blood of martyrs. It was not because of the Iranian planners smartness.

    If Iran had accepted ceasefire in 1986, 84 or 82, then no benefit would have come out of it. The benefits that came out of it was that Iraq had gone bankrupt by the end of the war and US abandoned it as it does with its allies so often, and then USSR broke up and could not support Saddam anymore at the right moment. If by some chance the peace had come before in 1988, Saddam would not have been bankrupt and he would still have support of USSR, US and Arabs till today and being alive. He would have been harassing a weak Iran even today. But because of this Iranian divine luck, Saddam went bankrupt and then tried to take Kuwait and the rest. The divine intervention, then made sure, US looked at Saddam while Iran continued to live instead of being at the US cross-hair right upto 2003.

    It was only after that then the main focus was again shifted back to Iran. During that time, Iranian planners were sleeping. They did not take full advantage of the opportunities to them. They did not modernize the military. The rulers and their cousins who had so much claims because of their other cousins who had been in war were making huge money by import business. It was a perfect opportune time for Iran to speed up its nuclear program. Then Iran like North Korea could have tested its nukes when US was deeply bogged down in Iraq and Afghanistan in 2006.

    Alas, the Iranian planners only came to know about their dangerous situation after Saddam was toppled. And toppling of Saddam was actually because of, again a divine luck because Americans had gone blind and were not seeing the strategic benefits it had for Iran. It was done by American muscle power but it benefited Iran, not because Iran’s planners were smart but because of luck. If Iranian planners had been smart, they could have perceived the situation and taken advantage of its opportune moments, which Iran did not.

    What they did was to waste and plunder over 1400 billion dollars (2012 dollars) of foreign exchange they had earned after the war was over, to build Iran into a technological power. Very little was done. Very little. The planners were corrupt. They had organized an import mafia and were not interested to overhaul Iranian tax system, banking system and industrial sector. They were even trying to kill the agriculture by importing agri products from outside and thanks to them, now Iran is even dependent on food imports from edible wheat to animal feed.

    This is what happens when you put these kind of people with big mouths and big claims on the important jobs instead of basing the job appointment on strict merit. Power corrupts and absolute power, corrupts absolutely. This is what happened in Iran and has been happening for the past 5000 years. When you give some one absolute power to import then the local industry will ofcourse have no choice but to commit suicide.

    The gains Iran made in Iraq had nothing to do with Iranian planning. It was given to Iran on a plate by God. So no one should be allowed to take credit for this, including the malijaks and then trying to expand their import mafia on the basis of this just like they designed their import mafia on the blood of those who died fighting Saddam. Shame on them and their corrupt deeds.

  268. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Take your pick of the spin…

    Japan Oil Imports From Iran Fall in October on U.S. Sanctions
    :http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-11-29/japan-oil-imports-from-iran-fall-in-october-on-u-s-sanctions.html

    Iran curbs dodged by Asia
    :http://www.mmail.com.my/story/iran-curbs-dodged-asia-39161

  269. Richard Steven Hack says:

    If true – I repeat, IF TRUE – this would seriously call into question any notion that Iran would enter a war on Syria by the US and NATO…a notion I’ve dismissed before and continue to do so.

    Without Iran’s support, Assad regime will collapse: report
    :http://english.alarabiya.net/articles/2012/11/29/252465.html

    Report: Iran hedging Syrian bets
    :http://www.upi.com/Top_News/Special/2012/11/29/Report-Iran-hedging-Syrian-bets/UPI-89551354201857/

  270. Richard Steven Hack says:

    New Sanctions Could Put An End To Iran’s Natural Gas-For-Gold Trade
    http://www.businessinsider.com/new-us-sanctions-to-end-turkeys-game-of-gold-for-natural-gas-2012-11

    UPDATE 1-Turkey sees no clash with U.S. over Iran ‘gold for gas’
    http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/11/29/turkey-usa-idUSL5E8MT61X20121129

    They’ll see one soon…

  271. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Glenn Greenwald on the AP diagram hoax. Very much worth the read!

    AP’s dangerous Iran hoax demands an accounting and explanation
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2012/nov/29/ap-iran-nuclear-program-graph-explanation

  272. Richard Steven Hack says:

    U.S. sets March deadline for Iran to cooperate with IAEA
    http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/11/29/nuclear-iran-usa-idUSL5E8MTEZL20121129

    Well, here comes the final push – first in the UNSC for a Chapter 7 Resolution. That will of course fail due to Russia and China. But it’s clear that the US and NATO will be pushing harder throughout 2013 for justification for war.

    So much again for Obama changing course…

    As it happens, it’s likely that resolving the Syria situation will take as long (as well as Israel attacking Lebanon), so we can see that there should not be an Iran war for the first half or three-quarters of 2013 at the least, and possibly not during 2013 at all.

    2014 doesn’t look good, however. It all depends on how long Syria and Lebanon takes to resolve.

  273. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Turkey asks NATO for 18-20 Patriot missiles, NATO offers 8- 10
    http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/world/2012-11/28/c_132005665.htm

  274. Richard Steven Hack says:

    As expected, and as reported by the White House’s mouthpiece, David Sanger…

    U.S. Weighs Bolder Effort to Intervene in Syria’s Conflict
    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/11/29/world/us-is-weighing-stronger-action-in-syrian-conflict.html

    Note:

    Administration officials discussed all of these steps before the presidential election. But the combination of President Obama’s re-election, which has made the White House more willing to take risks, and a series of recent tactical successes by rebel forces, one senior administration official said, “has given this debate a new urgency, and a new focus.”

    End Quote

    So much for Obama becoming more of a “Peace President” in his second term… In reality, this was the plan all along, merely put on hold before the elections.

  275. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Is Hamas Really a ‘Surrogate’ of Iran?
    http://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2012/11/is-hamas-really-a-surrogate-of-iran/265658/

    Argues that it really isn’t that much, which is also true of Hizballah in Lebanon. Allies are not necessarily “surrogates” except in propaganda.

  276. fyi says:

    Bussed-in Basiji says:

    November 29, 2012 at 6:40 am

    The Mongols killed millions in the Iranian plateau over 2 generations of warfare.

    Nubile girls were raped in front of their fathers and the females and young boys taken into slavery.

    Had a state such as Seljuq’s existed, Mongols could possibly had been defeated; just as they were repeatedly defeated by the Mamluks.

    In the absence of such a state, one has to be armed as much as possible.

    I submit to you that excellence in weaponary obviates the need to send trucks to gather body parts of the soldiers.

    And while men may fight under flag of Imam Hussein, it will do no harm that such men are equipped with as powerful weapons as possible.

    The Just need not be Weak to be Just – they owe it to others to be Strong.

    And thank you for your concern about my spiritual well being; I trust that yours is well also.

  277. Smith says:

    Nasser says:
    November 28, 2012 at 9:15 pm

    Thank you for your support. Well, I will not completely leave and will continue to read and am still posting but I do not know about future. I hope something good will come out of all things we do. That is the most important. To think for oneself and learn from mistakes. Keep it up.

  278. fyi says:

    M.Ali says:

    November 29, 2012 at 5:05 am

    “Million of paths that Iran could take” – you said.

    Please share 3.

  279. fyi says:

    Jay says:

    November 29, 2012 at 12:35 am

    What you are saying is true at this moment in time.

    The world changes and with it the calculations of US and EU planners.

    Unstable peace at this time does not imply future peace.

    The fact remains that nuclear weapons have kept Peace in Europe.

    There is no reason to assume that they won’t in the Middle East.

  280. fyi says:

    kooshy says:

    November 28, 2012 at 11:56 pm

    You must distinguish between stated and un-stated aims of wars.

    For example, Axis Powers stated aim is to stop nuclear enrichment in Iran.

    Their un-stated aim is to destroy Islamic Republic.

    An analogous thing obtained during the Iran-Iraq War.

    There was no other way; Iraqi Ba’ath state had to be destroyed else she would attack Iran again.

  281. fyi says:

    Pirouz says:

    November 29, 2012 at 2:47 am

    I was writing of 1988 and not 2003.

    All you are saying is that as an un-intended consequence of the US destruction of the Ba’athist State in Iraq; Iranians benefited – they got their prize thanks to America.

    Well.

    You look at World War II and the winner was the United States – and not USSR that had lost 25 million souls to destroy the NAZI Germany and her allies.

  282. fyi says:

    nahid says:

    November 29, 2012 at 6:33 am

    The Seljuq period is one of the pivotal periods in the history of the Near East.

    Its existence brought forth a long period of peace while keeping external enemies out.

    Clearly, both the Sassanian Confederacy and the Seljuq State, as geopolitical entities, were beneficial to the people of the Iranian plateau by keeping the foreigners out.

    [The Safavids were a pale echo of the Seljuqs.]

    For the past 100 years, specially after the disintegration of the Ottoman Empire, Muslim polities have been the playground of the Christian powers.

    This must be brought to an end.

    Iran by herself cannot do so.

    A grouping of like-minded states are needed since the restoration of something like the Seljuqs or Sassanian is an impossibility.

    But it will not happen without its necessity being absorbed by leaders in Iran, Iraq, Turkey, and Pakistan.

  283. fyi says:

    Nasser says:

    November 28, 2012 at 10:36 pm

    Canada and the United States.

  284. fyi says:

    M.Ali says:

    November 29, 2012 at 5:09 am

    The industrial capacity to build those systems does not exist in Iran.

    Nor will they be sold in sufficient quantities by any state to Iran.

  285. Rehmat says:

    Susan Rice: ‘A Gladiator defending Israel’

    Dr. Susan Rice, the US envoy at the United Nations, has received the approval of the powerful Jewish lobby groups to replace the outgoing secretary of state, Hillary Clinton. It’s expected Obama will chose her over the other hopeful – Senator John Kerry whose both grand parents were Jewish.

    Abraham Foxman, national director of Jewish lobby group ADL has endorsed Rice by calling her a “gladiator fighting to defend Israel in hostile atmosphere of the United Nations”.

    Rabbi Julie Schonfeld, executive vice-president of the Rabbinical Assembly, representing over 400 rabbis, said: “It’s moving to hear how her relation to Israel resonated with the rabbis”.

    Both Susan Rice and Hillary Clinton are members of the powerful Israeli advocacy group Council on Foreign Relations, headed by Zionist Jew Dr. Richard Haass.

    On Tuesday, Susan Rice was grilled by three ‘Israel-Firsters’, Senators John McCain, Lindsey Graham and Kelly Ayotte for the merder of US ambassador in Benghazi, Christopher Stevens in September 2012 was not an act of terrorism but by the anti-Islam movie ‘Innocence of Muslims’. However, most analyst believe that it’s an Israeli Mossad false flag operation to set a war between the US and Iran. After the meeting, McCain said Rice is “unqualified” for the position. He suggested Sarah Palin could have been a better choice.

    http://rehmat2.wordpress.com/2012/11/29/susan-rice-a-gladiator-defending-israel/

  286. Sakineh Bagoom says:

    Smith,

    “Iran with their weak conventional military in a region increasingly hostile to Iranian national interests and with increasing numbers of anti-missile systems surrounding Iran and in effect making the only weapon Iran has ineffective”

    I am trying to reconcile your logic of an Iran with nuclear weapons and ICBMs to deliver them. But, if the only means of delivery is on a missile and Iran is surrounded by anti-missile systems, doesn’t it make the whole exercise moot?
    Please flesh out this argument.

    For the record, I am in the no nukes camp, and feel Iran due to structural deficiencies and years of sanction/mismanagement can only defend itself by way of fourth generation/asymmetric warfare. It cannot match the superpower missile for missile, gun for gun, boat for boat. It has to defend from within and from without.

  287. Sineva says:

    Heres an interesting story in light of the greeks refusal to refuel iranian shipping,if true it would allow iran to have either another bargaining chip,limiting the amount of 60% enrichment or another step closer to a large fissile stockpile and a credible japan option,hopefully by now the west has learnt its lesson about underestimating irans abilities when it comes to enriching to higher levels
    http://theiranproject.com/blog/2012/07/17/widespread-reflection-of-irans-decision-to-make-nuclear-ship-fuel/

  288. Reza Esfandiari says:

    Off topic, I know, but I would appreciate it if some of you on RFI could sign this petition in support of the freedom and fair treatment of Iranian political scientist and scholar, Dr. Kaveh Afrasiabi, who is currently facing unjust accusations in the state of Massachusetts. I am sure that Flynt and Hillary would approve:

    http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/petition-to-the-massachusetts-governor-and-state/

    Thanks.

  289. Bussed-in Basiji says:

    fyi,
    First, thanks for reminding us of the “high cost” but let’s not forget what you were doing those years while others were paying that high cost. Always keep that in mind until the end of your life.

    Second, Iran’s objective in the war was not ending the Ba’ath state, it was defense of it’s territory and defense of it’s revolution and newly formed Islamic Republic. Winners on both counts.

    And even if the strategic goal would be ending the Ba’ath state- well look at Iraq today. I think you will agree that Iranian political, diplomatic, military and intelligence activity from 1989 onwards contributed significantly to the end of the Ba’athist state culminating in the US invasion. More than that we have an Iraq ruled by factions which were supported by Iran and everyone agrees today that Iraq is a strategic ally of the Iran.

    If you reflect a little you will see that not only did we win the Iran-Iraq war, we positively, historically and strategically transformed Iraq.

    Remember we follow Imam Hussein (as) who according to you “lost” his war. I think this clearly shows the fundamental incompatibility of our positions.

    I urge you to return to your homeland and see for yourself the realities and maybe try to make up a little for the strategic spiritual “blunder” you committed in the 1980s.

  290. nahid says:

    Dear FYI

    “Saljuqs rule in the Near East.” What is that. Please elaborate. Thanks.

  291. M.Ali says:

    Fyi,

    You say,

    “Mr. Smith is quite correct to point out in the absence of self-propelld artillary, modern tanks, modern ariplanes etc. and in sufficient numbers, Iranians must rely on nuclear weapons.”

    then say

    “There is no other way.”

    Wouldn’t another way be to go for “self-propelld artillary, modern tanks, modern ariplanes etc. and in sufficient numbers”?

    So that if it is achieved, your statement could be changed to,

    “With the availabiliy of self-propelld artillary, modern tanks, modern ariplanes etc. and in sufficient numbers, Iranians need not rely on nuclear weapons.”

    Therefore, invalidating your statement that “There is no other way.” since by your own first statement,you showed that there IS another way.

  292. M.Ali says:

    Smith,

    “The statistics are clear. Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya etc were without nuclear weapons (guns). India, Pakistan, North Korea etc all have nuclear weapons (guns).

    Is that clearer now?”

    Your logic is the one which is a bit flawed. That’s like saying that Hitler was a vegetarian, therefore all vegetarians are dictators.

    USA isn’t threatening to attack Morroco, even though it doesn’t have a nuclear weapon. Cuba has been Enemy #1 of USA, why aren’t they being attacked? Venezula is not friend of USA, why arent they being attacked? They don’t have nukes.

    It is not a simple case of nukes & no nukes. Like I have said, there are no absolutes, there are millions of variables. But you somehow think that geopolitics is just a case of who has nukes and who doesn’t, as if it is a video game, where nukes makes you read the end level, and you win. For such simple ideas, I don’t know why you have to be so hooty-tooty about it and pretend you have some unique idea no one ever thought of (Iran should get nukes! Stop the press!) or that Iran will send ninja assasins after you for coming up with such a controversial viewpoint that will shake the foundations of the Islamic Republic and disprove the existance of God or that you are some sort of Iranian Terminator coming from the future to give us lowly mortals a knowledge from 1000 years in the future.

    There is really no huge reason for USA to attack North Korea. Even when it didn’t have nuclear weapons, USA didn’t give a fuck about NK. If NK didn’t have nukes would USA attack it? Why? Would on Earth would USA attack NK? To stop its huge regional influence? To stop NK messing with the oil market? To stop NK competiting with USA for control over middle east? To stop NK’s growing support among South America? To stop NK’s attack on USA’s soil? USA sanctioned NK and moved on. NK is China’s little brother.

    Or take Pakistan. What else would USA want with Pakistan that he doesn’t get now? Pakistan is firmly under his control and its drones shoot its civilians regularly whenever it pleases, and the government of Pakistan does nothing. How is the nukes helping the Pakistani people here? How much is it helping them?

    To make it as clear as possible, your argue that Iran has two options:
    Makes nukes or die.

    That’s all taht exists in your argument. There are no nauces to it, no shades, no variables. There is this absolute. Getting nukes is worth all the costs that comes with it, and getting nukes is highest possible profit, therefore any cost/profit analysis you make, makes nukes come out on top, making the easiest decision in your head. You are stubborn, arrogant, and with a huge superiority complex.

    My argument is NOT:
    Iran should be defensless
    Iran should not care
    Iran should not make informed decisions
    Iran should only import bananas

    There is a high chance that Iran WILL be attacked if it goes for nukes. This does not mean we are scared of big bad USA, but we are making the sensible choices. As others have mentioned, when we go for the nukes path, we lose ALL support. As I mentioned before, USA, Israel, and Europe and all their Nato buddies and all the countries they can arm twist will DIRECTLY attack us. UN support WILL be given (do you think China & Russia will veto?). Countries that won’t attack like Saudi Arabia, etc, will support indirectly, by giving billins of money to attackers. Countries like Egypt, etc that won’t attack or support, won’t help Iran. It would be like the Iraq war x100.

    If during these attacks, Iran somehow invests all her manpower and money and time for a rush to nuclear weapons, would it be worth it? Lets say they suddenly stop attacks, what would Iran have remaining? No allies, huge debts, a destroyed country.

    But what if the attacks don’t stop and only increase now they know that Iran is getting more dangerous? Who will Iran nuke? Mecca? Dubai? Qods?

    Iran’s choice is NOT NUKES OR NOTHING. There are millions of paths Iran can take to secure itself.

  293. M.Ali says:

    Nasser,

    “Nasser,

    . – So you want to live in perpetual insecurity? If your answer is yes, then you are right we will never see eye to eye.”

    No

    “- I understand that the threats I have outlined seem remote to you.”

    Remote for now. There is a threat now and there is a threat in the future. The threat now should be handled first.

    ” Yeah yeah they are possible but not very probable. But, the threats of US bombing the shit out of Iran seem very real to you. The other threats aren’t imminent and thus you don’t take them seriously.”

    I take them seriously. Where did I say I did not take them seriously?

    “I read that to mean you want to sacrifice your long term fundamental interests for temporary pain relief.”

    I would like Iran to handle their long term interest while taking care of their current one. I’m just saying that there is no use planning for 30 years later if I screw things up now.

    “I don’t judge that to be a responsible approach. I would rather take my lumps today, vaccinate myself and live in security for the rest of my life.”

    To plan for the future, we usually have to make informed decisions to be able to secure ourselves at the moment.

    I know Iran needs to be more secure, but I don’t believe in your all-or-nothing scenario..

  294. M. Ali says:

    Nasser,

    . – So you want to live in perpetual insecurity? If your answer is yes, then you are right we will never see eye to eye.

    - I understand that the threats I have outlined seem remote to you. Yeah yeah they are possible but not very probable. But, the threats of US bombing the shit out of Iran seem very real to you. The other threats aren’t imminent and thus you don’t take them seriously. I read that to mean you want to sacrifice your long term fundamental interests for temporary pain relief. I don’t judge that to be a responsible approach. I would rather take my lumps today, vaccinate myself and live in security for the rest of my life.

  295. Pirouz says:

    fyi says:
    November 28, 2012 at 10:05 pm

    You’re wrong. Iran won the Iran-Iraq war, signified on March 2, 2008 by landmark visit of President Ahmadinejad to Baghdad, Iraq, with the following war goals accomplished through Iranian soft power and the unintended consequence of American hard power:

    1) A Shia led overnment popularly installed in Baghdad.

    2) The holy cities of Iraq and Iran opened up for cross-pilgrimages.

    3) The execution of Saddam Husayn.

    4) The removal of the Baath party from Iraq.

  296. Jay says:

    Intuition, feelings, and opinions have a place in discussion, but rational analysis is uniquely characterized by being less biased.

    Deterrence does not necessarily require nuclear weapons. The concept of deterrence is predicated on the cost of action, perceived or real. When such costs are “unacceptable”, deterrence is achieved. Costs may be economical, psychological, or based on lives of humans. Unacceptable cost is a multi-criteria measure and it is ultimately a cost-benefit analysis. Cost and benefit are broadly defined. It is not necessarily financial.

    The US and allies have not attacked Iran for the past 30 years because the costs-benefit analysis has not yielded an acceptable measure. While the benefits of attacking Iran has increased (from the US and allies viewpoint), the costs have increased considerably faster. Absent accidental war, the status quo will hold for some time. The US is working on reducing the costs of attacking Iran – sanctions, Syria, etc. Iran has been working on revamping the cost equation – more forward weapons, more economic targeting, etc.

    It is difficult, but not impossible, for Iran to develop a nuclear weapon in secret. However, it is not necessary. Even if Iran developed a nuke, for it to act as deterrent, it must also be able to deliver it to a “worthy” target. Deterrence with conventional weapons is all that is needed – and deterrence is holding.

    Professional war planners carefully distinguish between a battle and the war. The US, with superior firepower, will win a battle or two or three, but the US planners at this point believe that they will loose the war (in the broader sense). Iran’s goals of producing more accurate, more powerful conventional weapons, in larger numbers is the most effective approach at this point. This equation may change in the future.

  297. kooshy says:

    Nasser says:
    November 28, 2012 at 9:00 pm

    Nasser

    I am at the point (see my very first post on this tread) that I believe what Condi Rise ( Brenj-e-domsiah) or Obama thinks or wants is irrelevant to what a collective bureaucratic US policy planers want, which is an exceptional US superiority with a calculated cost benefit bases, once the cost has rich the point of unbearable they change course regardless if Condi or Obama wants or not they are not relevant to a bureaucratic policy made deep within an exceptional mentality .

  298. kooshy says:

    fyi says:
    November 28, 2012 at 10:05 pm

    “Thus, while Iran did not lose any territory, she was defeated in the Iran-Iraq War because her war aim, the destruction of the B’ath state, was not realized.”

    Where did that came from? Iranian name for the war is “sacred defense” not sacred offense or a regime change, the burden of winning is on the side that starts a war not on the defending side, is just like you say that the US won the Iraq war, Iran did not have any territorial claim on Iraq did it? Nor Iran had any claim on Iraqi government. Saddam was scared of Iranian Shieh revolution spreading to southern Iraq and was used by US as an Arab nationalist to contain spread of the Iranian revolution to Arab western allies, which with help of US, EU, Jordan, Egypt KSA, etc. he did, but at the end he felt he was betrayed by his allies, like in good felloes movie they did to him what he was setup to do. Why you have to say Iran’s aim was not achieved Iran’s Aim was to preserve her independence and revolution both were achieved and you are wrong that is the reason Iran won.

  299. Nasser says:

    fyi says: November 28, 2012 at 10:15 pm

    “Actually, that was the strategic blunder of the late Saddam Hussein; that fater invading Kuwait he did not send his armored columns all the way to Riyadh and destroy the Saudi Monarchy.”

    - That still wouldn’t have saved him. The only way he could have protected himself from the US would have been by taking Israel hostage with the threat of nuclear weapons. Something not within his means.

    - His biggest mistake though was messing with Iran in the first place – a country completely consumed by post revolutionary internal mess. He should have focused on Saudi Arabia instead yes.

  300. kooshy says:

    Nasser says:
    November 28, 2012 at 8:52 pm

    - That is a fair question. The short answer to that can be said in one word: Iraq.

    Nasser, no that’s not the answer Iranian strategist and planers will laugh at that answer, Iraq was a proxy of US to shield off Islamic revolution going west which eventually did after US invaded Iraq 10 years ago and mistakenly opened the flood shield that they had erected.

    If ever there was a time to attack Iran it was at Iran’s weakest point when the oil was less than$10 per barrel, with a relatively new and not so popular government and new not completely matured supreme leader, Iraq was defeated in first gulf war with west, there was no challenge to US at USNC from Russians or newly rising China who was demonized by the Tiananmen square, and Syria, Iran’s Arab ally was actually cooperating with US in attacking Iraq, Iran was severely weakened after the Iraq war, Iran had no real deterrent missile program or any militarily significant way to defend her territory, there was no shortage of oil in the world, there were no rising BRICS around to economically challenge the US/West, etc. these points all direct one to years of 1992-1997, if Iran was all that weak why didn’t she get attacked then, what a defeated isolated sanctioned Saddam or Iraq had to do with it?

    What had to do with it was a cost benefit analysis on the US part which like now they went for a less expensive containment instead of a long hot trench war with a fierce nationalist nation state that if prolonged can destabilize a whole lot of made up states all around Iran.
    American planers do understand that Iranians will not and cannot accept hegemony and superiority of the west, for that they will standup and will sacrifice their life, something they learned from Vietnam that is not worth to fight but worth to contain for a hope of regime fall.

    Nasser, immediately after Islamic revolution of 1979 two important shields we built on both sides of Iran to contain Iranian revolution spreading to surrounding Islamic countries, Soviets invaded Afghanistan and setup a communist secular government as buffer to their Muslim central Asian republics and the American elevated Sadam as an Arab nationalist to contain Iran’s influence to southern Iraq and across gulf to Sunni Arab monarchies none worked and no one dared to attack Iran instead they attacked both countries that they were setup to shield the Iranian revolution from spreading.

  301. Dan Cooper says:

    What Really Happened in Gaza

    2 Minutes Video

    On BBC’s Question Time on 22.11.12, journalist Owen Jones described the reality– largely ignored by the mainstream media — of Israel’s brutal attack on Gaza, 14-22 November 2012, that left close to 160 killed, over 30 of them children.

    http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article33166.htm

  302. fyi says:

    Mr. Smith:

    Mr. Obama will not change course; he and the other leaders of Axis States have incurred too much diplomatic, financial, and political costs to change course.

    The recent noises that he has made has been in aticipation of Iranian concessions because of sanctions.

    That is, he estimates that there is a deal to be extracted out of Iranians now that they are suffering under sanctions.

    This is how it is understood in Tehran and it will be ignored; the view in Tehran, as far as I can tell, is that US strategy has been the destruction of Iranian power since 1994 and no change is anticipated.

    In two recent speeches in Northern Khorasan, Mr. Khamenei escalated rhetorically first by tracing the US enmity towards Iran to the overthrow of the government of the late Dr. Mossadeq and in another one, by indicating that non-relation with certain “arrogant” powers will continue indefinietly.

    The alienation of Iran from Axis Powers is being completed as I write this – I expect the Iranian state will try to politically neutralize all those that are well-disposed towards US and EU.

    By the way, Mr. Obama has done the most of any US President in recent memory for Israel yet he has also presided over her strategic decline.

  303. Persian Gulf says:

    Smith:

    without going into the detail of your posts (actually I didn’t read all your posts. I tend to ignore long pots generally), I wanted to mention few points:

    -If a sickening person like “Nasser” fully agrees with you, I assume you either make motherhood statements, or something really off if not suspicious. or else it’s just a by product of one’s crisis of identity abroad to make feel good by assertions that are often devoid of any practical meaning. This guy didn’t, by his own admission in this website, accept Iran’s 2009 election up until more than 2.5 years later (and only anonymously in this website and probably nowhere else) despite having sufficient evidences to do so, and instead decided to continue the very damaging stand of refuting the election results. I think that itself is tantamount to not having a defense system at all. probably even worse an internal bleeding so to speak.

    -Based on my limited experiences, in today’s Iran, people of religious-nationalist are more entitled, or can be taken more seriously, to talk about Iran’s safety and probably her interests too. the rest, with all due respect, have just ran away whenever push came to shove. not that I am particularly happy with what this thug has to say, the history of modern Iran just confirms that. I have seen Iranians lecturing for their love of Iran and how they care about Iran here and there, yet refused to even contemplate going to the battlefield if Iran is attacked and if the country needs them dearly (they would likely blame Iran for the war instead). it’s fair to say one of the reasons Iran has not been attacked, at least since 2003, is the willingness of her citizens to scarify with the highest price possible. so long as the citizens’ of a country like Iran’s size keep that spirit, she won’t be attacked in a prolonged war. Nuclear weapon is necessary to increase the safety factor, but probably not enough per se.

    -The ones who fought in an actual war more than two decades ago during Iraq-Iran war are still in charge. I assume the should be more nervous about Iran’s safety than people like you and I in the presumably safe heaven.

    -Sometimes going after something ,even full geared, doesn’t work. for eight years Iranians (including my brothers) tried very hard to defeat Iraq and capture Al-Basreh at least, even by dropping themselves on mines without any luck. yet events have turned in Iran’s favor in such a way that without firing a single shot the whole country was up for garbing. some people call it destiny, some say Hidden Imam, some call it (bad)luck and some say it’s just non-sense. whatever it is, it’s beyond our normal cost-benefit analysis. so, you just never know. may be declaring an open nuclear intention, as you say, have a reversing effect of bringing full destruction to Iran.

    -At the end, I think you are wasting your valuable IQ here. defining national policies does not really need very high level of intelligence. just an average IQ is enough for that matter. and I am sure IR of Iran has more than enough people with that credential. I wish your IQ could be channeled in ways that are more practical and more beneficial for the well being of the very people you claim to care the most rather than shouting at this or that person in this forum.

  304. Sineva says:

    Richard Steven Hack says:
    November 28, 2012 at 8:08 pm
    Its about bloody time,iran has been testing several different designs for quite a few years now without settling on one and putting it into mass production.The question now is will iran do a one for one replacement thus keeping the numbers of centrifuges constant even though its overall enrichment capability will increase or will it simply increase the numbers of centrifuges and use the possibility of limiting the numbers as another bargaining chip with the west,hopefully the first place to receive the new models will be the 20% enrichment cascades at fordow

  305. Nasser says:

    fyi,

    To what extent do you see Iraq cooperating with Iran in the future?

  306. fyi says:

    kooshy says:

    November 28, 2012 at 9:58 pm

    Construction of nuclear weapons by Iran at this time – 11/28/2012 – is not useful.

    However, once the sanctions are eviscerated, there is only marginal costs for Iran to build and deploy those weapons.

    If Mr. Smith be wrong, Iran would be in a comforable place with a few tens of atomic bombs and thus preventing an attack on her and her allies.

    If Mr. Smith be right, Iran would be in a comforable place with a few tens of atomic bombs and thus preventing an attack on her and her allies.

    There is no un-managable negative consequences for Iran; either way.

  307. fyi says:

    Nasser says:

    November 28, 2012 at 8:52 pm

    Actually, that was the strategic blunder of the late Saddam Hussein; that fater invading Kuwait he did not send his armored columns all the way to Riyadh and destroy the Saudi Monarchy.

    Hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of Arabs in Saudi Arabia would have joined him.

    He was timid – like the thug that he was – he was not a grand strategist.

    The long term aim of Iranians, in my opinion, should be the resotoration of something resembleing the extent of Saljuqs rule in the Near East.

  308. fyi says:

    Bussed-in Basiji says:

    November 28, 2012 at 3:31 pm

    In war, there is no substitute for victory.

    Thus, while Iran did not lose any territory, she was defeated in the Iran-Iraq War because her war aim, the destruction of the B’ath state, was not realized.

    But this was at a very high cost; in Faw there was a wall of Iraqi fire through which no Iranian soldier ever passed – thousands died there since Iranians did not have the equipment for suppressing that fire from land and air.

    At the front lines, often times there were trucks loaded with body parts – hundreds of pieces – gathered by hand and loaded into trucjs to be sorted behind the front lines.

    Mr. Smith is quite correct to point out in the absence of self-propelld artillary, modern tanks, modern ariplanes etc. and in sufficient numbers, Iranians must rely on nuclear weapons.

    There is no other way.

  309. kooshy says:

    Smith says:
    November 28, 2012 at 12:41 pm

    “It is you guys that you have to prove: Iran will not be attacked if it does not develop nuclear weapons. We do not have to prove anything. Do you understand now? The history, the symptoms and the signs all, are on our side.”

    You claim the History is on your side? If so then you need to explain why Iran was not directly attacked by a nuclear state in past 30+ years while resisting both eastern and the western hegemonies. If that is correct it means Iran has been using the balance of power in her benefit with a relatively low cost. I happen to believe that for time being Iran is more secure internally and as the result externally than all her neighbors including Turkey, Egypt, KSA, Pakistan although Iran is the only country in the region standing up to external big powers. This security up to now is been possible in a common unity national belief for independence, did not come free of charge but in part was possible for Iran due to her National unity and geostrategic location. Iran will and should build up her military defense without sending out an invitation for an attack by fielding a nuclear bomb when no one will support her and for sure she will lose any international support she may have.

    If Iran was to make a covert nuclear military program I bet she will even lose Venezuelan support and only friend and trade partner she may have left would be North Korea. Smith what got me upset was that the same line of argument is coming from MEK which has two purpose in mind (which we all know they don’t have a single concern for Iran or Iranian security do you agree?) by prescribing Iran should have or should go Nuclear armed is to first make an impression to Iranian people that as ultra-read neck Iranian nationalists we think the current government is incapable of securing Iran and if it doesn’t go nuclear your daughters and wife’s will be raped so making the Iranian government’s base of support weak at home ( basjis will not fight this time because they all are driving Ferraris), at the same time to imply to Iran’s enemies that the real purpose and cause for Iranian nuclear work is that they really need and think of nuclear bomb as total and only way of security, therefore the purpose of their whole nuclear project is to eventually be nuclear armed, therefore convincing a mad dog to attack a weekend divided nation so they can get a chance to come to power in Chalabi style. For those who know Iran and Iranians although this is a wishful thinking but still is sneaky and dangerous, what we Iranians call “beheading with a cotton ball”

    “The nations that did not have nuclear weapons were attacked and pillaged with their women raped and their babies killed.”

    It’s also worth to mention that all nations or entities that were directly attacked or did receive engineered revolutionary regime change by the US/ west all were immediate past subordinates of western hegemony that includes, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iraq, Libya, Yemen, Egypt, Tunisia, and to an extend Syria (cooperated with CIA on intelligence and interrogation) none was ever attacked that did not have a relation with US even the Taliban Afghanistan and Sadam’s Iraq,

    I will go on to argue all these recent engineered revolutions came to be necessary to redirect a possible collective Islamic resistance, this includes the new mild defiance posture adopted by Turkey and Egypt toward Israel.

    “But the nations that developed nuclear weapons stand secured.”

    Not true Pakistan might be secure and deter India to an extend but as a result if Pakistan’s military ever becomes destabilize from within there exist a lot more danger to her from preemptive US/EU/India attack than ever before. Like what her current situation is with a few doses of steroids, like I said before, Pakistan’s fundamentalism is a lot more dangerous to India/ US/EU and their interests before it’s to Iran.

    “The onus, is on Iranian leaders to prove that they can defend Iran with their weak conventional military”

    Well as you said if history is a lesson then the Iranian planers have done well in this last 30+ years defending Iran and continuing to peruse independent Iranian policies, looks like everyone here agrees that Iran needs to increase her scientific and industrial base being for military usage or commercial and economic, and I agree with you in any which way possible, but we argue Iran should avoid agitating her neighbors, or inviting harsher measures including an unnecessary irrational undue increase of hostilities, Iran is not North Korea nor it can survive under conditions the NK is. What you recommend will bring unnecessary self-isolation from her neighbors and her current supporters however unimportant or ineffective they maybe this will be a step backward. This does not mean that the supporters of this policy are willing to give up what is Iran’s legal right without receiving something in return, Iran with her nuclear policy has two important objectives which has to be perused simultaneously one is her national security without unmeasured increase of hostilities( which means to maintain a legal status within her rights), and second is an active future nuclear energy security none becomes possible with adopting to field an actual nuclear bomb, but both are possible by maintaining and insisting on a legal nuclear status. That is the current policy of Iran which in my opinion is in a correct path. Sanctions and economic siege will continue and Iran and Iranian will need to endure the sanctions in this ongoing fight which is lot less expensive for both side of this 30 year old conflict than a hot war with a high possibility for an eventual goal to destabilize Iran’s national integrity.

    You are free to feel whatever you want or think of me or say here on this blog, I welcome your opinions, but what I, any many other got from your long continued comments here was, in one hand asking for Iran’s technical and scientific advancement, praising Iranian culture and history which everyone welcomes, but in other hand devaluing what has been done and achieved by the Iranians under existing possible circumstances is like what Photi said or much like the common Persian proverb of “beheading with cotton balls”. but when It comes to counter arguments instead of debating your points, going on dramatizing with raping Iranian women, etc. and to say I feel threaten and I think he is part of the cyber police and BS like that makes me feel that your objective is to imply that the current Iranian government is not efficient protecting Iranian interest but rather is here to buy Ferraris for the basijies, I don’t know that, and I don’t think you have a proof of that, but what I know is this is the only legal, government Iran currently has between a unified integrated Iran and a chaos that regime change mentality peruses.

    I will debate and counter argue anytime I feel I need to express my opinion you are welcome to rebuttal if you feel so. Like Flynt said a while back “Laughter is not an argument” I will add sarcasm to that. Sorry at my current age I no longer have the patience or time to write or even edit what I write.

  310. Nasser says:

    Smith,

    Please don’t leave. I realize you might get frustrated but I have greatly enjoyed reading your posts. You might be getting frustrated with some of the exchanges but truth must still be spoken. And I am sure there are many lurkers here that appreciate your contributions like I do.

  311. ExposingNeoConWarmongeringStooges says:

    Richard Steven Hack says:
    November 27, 2012 at 1:05 pm

    “Kooshy, et al: The people who think Iran can just build some nukes in a tunnel somewhere during a hot war are delusional. They are suffering from a similar sort of “cognitive dissonance” that afflicts those who think the US can never attack Iran, but sort of in reverse. Instead of minimizing US capability they magnify Iran’s capability.”

    The only people here who are delusional are those who think that Iran only has six TELs or only a few hundred MRBM’s when it has been manufacturing them for 20 years. Or that those MRBM’s are inaccurate despite video evidence to the contrary. Or that Iran doesn’t have 1,000s of highly accurate anti ship cruise missiles despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary. Or those that think that the US can destroy Iran’s ability to launch those missiles when Israel can’t do the same against Hezbollah with far greater odds in its favor and when the US failed to destroy a few dozen Iraqi SCUD launchers without significant protection during the first Gulf War. What you are doing is minimizing Iran’s capability far more than even officers in the US military who know something about warfare and the capabilities of Iran do.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Millennium_Challenge_2002

    “This is because they can’t believe their country’s relative position in the world because it would harm their self-image because they are too tied to their country. This isn’t surprising – most people’s self-image is tied to their family, their social group, and their country.”

    Good illustration of why Hack cannot acknowledge the reason why the US has not and will not attack Iran if it values the continuing survival of its economy.

    “Some people here sound like Baghdad Bob or the sort of propagandists from North Korea that no one takes seriously.”

    Yes, Iran has only six TELs. Ignore the incovenient videos that prove the contrary. Just keep repeating that while Iran simultaneously launches 50+ missiles against every US air base in the Persian Gulf in the event US aggression. You may even convince some people if you continue to repeat it hundreds of times on every thread on this blog.

    And by the way Hack the term “cognitive dissonance” refers to holding two contradictory beliefs at the same time or holding a belief and acting in a way that differs from that belief. It does not refer to examining evidence, basing your opinions on it and expressing your opinions. Like say the evidence based argument that is proven by actual events over the past 15 years that Iran will not be attacked by the US because it has the ability to defend itself and the US knows it does. That, unlike your fact free assertions, is not an example of “cognitive dissonance.”

  312. Nasser says:

    kooshy,

    I left out a part of the quote by mistake. The full quote by Condi Rice’s reads:

    “Karl Marx once called on workers of the world to unite across national boundaries. He told them that they had more in common with each other than with the ruling classes that oppressed them in the name of nationalism. Marx exhorted workers to throw off the “false consciousness” of national identity.

    Today’s Karl Marx is Iran. It envisions the spread of its influence among Shiites, uniting them under the theocratic flag of Tehran — destroying the integrity of Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, Iraq and Lebanon.”

    You can read her whole article here:
    “http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/condoleezza-rice-syria-is-central-to-holding-together-the-middle-east/2012/11/23/200e583e-2ebf-11e2-89d4-040c9330702a_story.html

  313. Nasser says:

    M.Ali,

    “But my argument is that to try to prevent a future attack, I don’t want to be attacked today!”

    - So you want to live in perpetual insecurity? If your answer is yes, then you are right we will never see eye to eye.

    - I understand that the threats I have outlined seem remote to you. Yeah yeah they are possible but not very probable. But, the threats of US bombing the shit out of Iran seem very real to you. The other threats aren’t imminent and thus you don’t take them seriously. I read that to mean you want to sacrifice your long term fundamental interests for temporary pain relief. I don’t judge that to be a responsible approach. I would rather take my lumps today, vaccinate myself and live in security for the rest of my life.

  314. Nasser says:

    Sineva says: November 28, 2012 at 4:03 am

    Thank you.

  315. Dan Cooper says:

    War With Iran A Terrible Idea – Here’s Why

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eCCkA2K5vqk

  316. Nasser says:

    kooshy says: November 28, 2012 at 12:27 am

    “You would need to address why didn’t they directly attack Iran 30 years ago or 15 years ago when a barrel of oil was $10 and Iran was much weaker internally externally financially militarily and politically, why the threat of Iran has been increased?”

    - That is a fair question. The short answer to that can be said in one word: Iraq.

    - US threat perception of Iran has changed in recent years. Rightly or wrongly the US sees Iran as the most serious threat to their interests in the Middle East.

    - That position was previously held by Saddam. It was Saddam that attacked Iranian and Kuwaiti oil fields and was positioned to attack Saudi oil fields.

    - The overriding US interest is in preventing any one entity from controlling all those resources; i.e preventing a regional hegemon from emerging.

    - Whereas it was Saddam before that threatened to control all the oil wealth of the region, the Americans now are more worried about the Shias and Iran.

    - They know that hypothetically there isn’t a Saddam anymore blocking Iranian tanks from rolling onto the Saudi oil fields. They also know that if Iran and Iraq combine their resources they would unquestionably become the most powerful actors in their neighborhood.

    - You have to understand that while turning Iraq into a Shiite state increased Iranian power, it also made its geopolitical position more acute and turned it into a much larger target.

    - You might dismiss these as ridiculous fears but American policy makers want to account for the worst possible outcomes. Their nightmares are made out of scenarios like this: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Executive_Orders

    - If you don’t believe me just read these statements from former US Secretaries of States:

    “For over half a century, American policy in the Middle East has been guided by several core security objectives: preventing any power in the region from emerging as a hegemon; ensuring the free flow of energy resources, still vital to the operation of the world economy; and attempting to broker a durable peace between Israel and its neighbors, including a settlement with the Palestinian Arabs. In the past decade, Iran has emerged as the principal challenge to all three of these objectives.”
    - Henry Kissinger

    “Karl Marx once called on workers of the world to unite across national boundaries. He told them that they had more in common with each other than with the ruling classes that oppressed them in the name of nationalism. Marx exhorted workers to throw off the “false consciousness” of national identity.
    – Condoleezza Rice

    - But Iran cannot compromise on Iraq. It’s border with that state constitutes its most vulnerable geographic point. The eight years war just further drives this home.

    - What all this means is that the fundamental differences between the US and Iran can no longer be resolved.

    - But, the US cannot solve this problem simply with bombardment. And the cost of such bombardment is prohibitively high. The US needs a different long term solution to the Iran problem.

    - I think the Americans are drifting closer to the Saudi view that the Iranian state itself must be crushed and perhaps some parts of it partitioned.

    - So Iranians shouldn’t assume they have escaped danger. The US presently is doing all it can to weaken Iran to ease a future attack.

  317. Smith says:

    Nasser & fyi:

    Wow. I did not know the import mafia actually reads Nietzsche and gets its inspiration from there. That is something new. Maybe that is why they love the Porsche so much. Now it all makes sense. The Italian clothes, the Porsche and the Nietzsche. Looking down on the rest of Iranians. Wonderful. So much change of ideology in a few years is really astounding. Colonel Dooran used to save his sortie snacks and bring them home for his wife and children, himself flying in and out of Iraq on empty stomach. And we have now Nietzsche lovers as replacements for those men. I would not call it progress though since God is still alive and Nietzsche is dead. The import mafia will die too, some day.

  318. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Bulletin of Atomic Scientists trashes Associated Press “Iran diagram”. Clearly another deliberate hoax from Israel.

    DIY graphic design
    http://www.thebulletin.org/web-edition/op-eds/diy-graphic-design

  319. ExposingNeoConWarmongeringStooges says:

    Richard Steven Hack says:
    November 28, 2012 at 8:58 am

    “I don’t believe Iran can avoid an attack – just win one after quite a bit of damage has been suffered. Basically Iran has to deal with the US the way the Iraqi insurgents and the Afghan Taliban have – bleed the US to death over years. It’s the only way a Third World country can deal with a superpower – use Fourth Generation War methods.”

    Yep, that’s why Bush attacked in 2005 and we are currently in the 7 year of the Iran war. Oh and by the way, we are also in the seventh year of producing all the biofuels the world needs to replace the 17 million barrels of oil that were lost when the Persian Gulf was closed following that attack. Of course food was a bit of a problem for a few years but with the substantially reduced population we are doing just fine on that front as well.

  320. Smith says:

    Dan Cooper says:
    November 28, 2012 at 1:30 pm

    Thank you for your comment. Very accurate and diligent. Personally I do not care for anything nowadays. The only thing is for Iran to remain secured. All things can hold. The only thing is for Iran not to be invaded and Iran remains physically safe. That is the only thing. As long Iran remains for Iranians with their own culture and religion, I am fine with it. But after having thought about it for more than 14 year now (after India/Pakistan tests), I have come to the conclusion that Iran without nukes, can never be safe, since the international law is a joke and the old world order is gone, while new world order has not yet taken hold and it seems the new world order has no sympathy for Iran whatsoever. That is the only thing worrying me.

  321. Smith says:

    fyi says:
    November 28, 2012 at 1:45 pm

    So it is that serious now. You just made me worried even more. I wish Iran had nukes.

  322. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Greek firm refuses to refuel Iran oil tanker due to sanctions
    http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/11/28/iran-tanker-greece-idUSL5E8MS6IJ20121128

    This is likely to become endemic, especially if Obama decides to impose a “faux blockade” in which Iranian vessels are not allowed to dock at any Western port. Of course, this won’t be that serious as Iran will merely deal with countries who are not part of the West’s sanctions regime. But the next step after that move will be a full on naval blockade preventing Iranian ships from leaving the Persian Gulf.

  323. Smith says:

    M.Ali says:
    November 28, 2012 at 2:38 pm

    Do not worry. I have calmed down now and I am not afraid of a few Malijak part of the import mafia, waiting for me at the airport: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yMt5DlO4BVw

    By the way nukes are cheap. Much cheaper than building up a substantial conventional force. By the way, did I say anything about nukes or banana? I do not think so. What I said was nukes or nothing. Bananas do not grow in Iran well, that is why the import mafia used to import them from Philippines. Again, it is you who has to prove that Iran can deter an attack by NATO using something other than nukes. You have not presented that option yet. Something that is sustainable into the future and cheap enough. Something that would make Iranians to stop looking over their shoulders continuously as they are doing now.

  324. Richard Steven Hack says:

    M.Ali: Actually if I remember correctly, the state of Florida passed a law making it easy for women to get concealed carry firearm permits. Allegedly rapes dropped significantly in subsequent months. Not to mention that rapists don’t tend to carry firearms unless they’re otherwise involved in criminal activity. Most rapists aren’t career criminals in the US, they’re people known to the victim. The whole discussion is mostly moot.

    The real flaw in Smith’s argument is that neighborhood crime has anything to do with international relations between superpowers and weaker countries. The analogy is just totally useless.

  325. Smith says:

    M.Ali says:
    November 28, 2012 at 2:59 pm

    When analyzing argument from an analogy, be careful about the logical fallacies. I had written:

    “…the statistics for that particular neighborhood show that…”

    The statistics are clear. Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya etc were without nuclear weapons (guns). India, Pakistan, North Korea etc all have nuclear weapons (guns).

    Is that clearer now?

  326. ExposingNeoConWarmongeringStooges says:

    Richard Steven Hack says:
    November 27, 2012 at 5:04 pm

    “Iran has about 300 Shahab-3 long-range missiles capable of hitting Israel (800-1600km), and perhaps 500-600 medium-range missiles with ranges from 100-500km. But it has far fewer launchers – allegedly only six for its longest range missiles – thus making mass attacks less effective”

    You are really trying hard to ensure your argument cannot be taken seriously by anyone with any actual knowledge about Iran. You come on here and cite a claim that Iran has only six TELs (once again, and I already debunked it) when Iran has rountinely displayed 50+ TELs in multiple military paradas over the last few years. Iran has been importing more than 1,000 of the heavy trucks it uses for TELs each year for more than 20 years. And of course it can also manufacture suitable heavy trucks as well. In other words you are on here making a claim that can be disproven by a short youtube search which you have obviously not even bothered to do. My advice to anyone who still considers Hack to be a remotely credible source for anything is to simply ask why someone who obviously spends hours writing posts every day cannot even be bothered to do a short youtube search for information that might disprove his ideas. Or has he done it and simply prefers to ignore the results in the pursuit of further advancing his specious argument? I should not have to point this out, but Hack has no idea how many missiles Iran has, and neither do the neocon sources he prefers to rely on as a source of information.

  327. Richard Steven Hack says:

    fyi: “Dr. Moussavian on resolving the Iran nuclear issue”

    What’s interesting about that is its published in the Christian Science Monitor, a fairly mainstream publication. I thought that was unusual, although CSM is one of the less biased mainstream newspapers.

    I agree a “grand bargain” is not going to happen.

  328. Smith says:

    A good short video from some one who knows what he is talking about: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LxWJvZbQdHs

  329. Bussed-in Basiji says:

    Smith/Qazvini/IQ 146
    You really have delusions of grandeur…you have nothing to fear because you are not in any way shape or form threatening. I know you think you are, but believe me you aren’t at all.

    If you want we can go visit some of the basiji arazel and you will see how “ba-hal” they are- and most of them drive Prides- no Lamborghinis or Porsches- they keep those with their second and third wives (“is he being sarcastic”?) Of course some of us take the bus (ha!)

    Remember that the only war in recent history in which we didn’t loose an inch of territory was the one in which the arazel were jumping on the mines so that uebermenschen like you today can enlighten us with your brain farts. Your welcome, no really.

    You don’t seem to understand- despite your IQ of 146- that your problem is not your ideas- some of which are good like I said. Your problem is that you are rude and arrogant. Maybe if you worked on that a little, old arazel would be more receptive to your brilliant utterances

  330. fyi says:

    All:

    Dr. Moussavian on resolving the Iran nuclear issu:

    http://news.yahoo.com/obama-must-offer-grand-deal-iran-nuclear-program-184859259–politics.html

    [I believe this is a non-starter; Axis States are not interested in resolution of this or strategic dialogue.

    But, I could be wrong.]

  331. M.Ali says:

    “Without nuclear weapons Iran will be dangerously exposed. Again let me illustrate it differently. There is this dangerous neighborhood of rapists. There are some girls living in that place. I advise a girl to get a small handgun with a few bullets. You advise against it, saying rapists have more guns and more bullets and a girl going to get a handgun is going to be more at risk by attracting attention and “angering” the rapists. I say, the statistics for that particular neighborhood show that, all the girls who were raped were unarmed and could not resist, while no girl that has the hand gun was ever raped. But you guys do not understand this. You keep regurgitating the BBC, that the gun will make the girls unsafe without proving how so, while the facts and statistics say otherwise.”

    There are no absolutes,

    http://twodaymag.com/live/view/would-guns-prevent-rape/

    “I wish I could say that guns would help rapes from taking place, but it could actually instigate more rapes. Guns are not the solution. Education is. There are ways to protect yourself: don’t walk at night alone on campus, don’t run at night on campus with earbuds in, when going to a party or bar only accept drinks that you have seen made with your own eyes, try to stay in well-lit, people-filled areas, don’t wear your hair in a ponytail because it is easier to grab, be observant of your environment to see if you’re being followed in any way, always listen to your gut if your instinct is telling you something is wrong, and if given the chance, take a self-defense class.

    Guns can’t prevent rapes, but educating yourself on how to avoid being in the position of anything negative happening can help. No rape is anyone’s fault, but we can learn together how to better protect ourselves without guns.”

  332. M.Ali says:

    Smith,

    “It is you guys, that you have to prove: Iran will not be attacked if it does not develop nuclear weapons. We do not have to prove anything. ”

    I don’t believe in absolutes in term of such things.
    Iran might be attacked if it has no nuclear weapons.
    Iran might be attacked if it has nuclear weapons.
    Iran might not be attacked if it has no nuclear weapons.
    Iran might not be attacked if it has nuclear weapons.

    All these are perfectly possible. In realms of political decision making, with millions of variables existing, there are no absolutes, and there never has been. We take all data we have into consideration, and try to make the best decision, based on cost/profit analysis.

    That’s what we are debating. Your cost/profit is different than mine, which is different than Hacks, which is different than BiB’s. There are no two simples SIDES to this debate as you think. Hack things a war is immediate in the near future, I don’t, BiB WANTS war, I don’t, James think Iran should suspend 20% enrichment, I don’t, etc. We all share different views. Please don’t think you are special, or somehow have found the one missing piece the whole world is searching for.

    And I know you are here to “educate us”, which is nice of you, but do you think it is possible that others here might have things to share too?

    Listen, Smith, I’m not saying Iran should be defenceless, so please don’t put twist my (and others) argument around. My point is that it would be a risk to Iran’s security at the moment if it goes after nukes currently and that it wouldn’t be worth the risk because it wouldn’t keep Iran safe that much in the future anyway.

    I’ve discussed that there are many other options available to Iran to become stronger and safer. The options available to Iran aren’t:

    1) Nukes
    -or-
    2) Bananas

  333. M.Ali says:

    Smith, I don’t think the officials in Iran will invest time and money to find out who you are and then torture/execute you because you are arguing for Iran to have nukes. I think they have more important things to worry about. And its not its such a controversial view to have in Iran. I bet every single official in Iran, that has some decision making responsibility, has thought and talked about it. You are simplifying the matter, and are misunderstanding everyone here. Its not like we are saying that Iran should make no investment in its defense. And I thought the whole thought process of the Iranian government was, “Nukes? Are you crazy? Its too expensive! Lets spend all our money on bananas! I love bananas! All we need for a secure Iran is our faith in God and bananas!”

  334. Smith says:

    fyi:

    I think things are turning now. People like Fareed Zakaria and Vali Nasr are insiders in Washington. What do you think? Maybe Obama intends to change its policy to containment otherwise why would such people come out and speak this way: http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=Z4uzEDewPyE#t=1129s

  335. James Canning says:

    The New York Times today called on Obama to pull all US troops out of Afghanistan by the end of 2013.

  336. Cyrus_2 says:

    Smith

    If Iran gets caught building nuclear weapons, which is quite likely, it will definitely be attacked, and Iran will bare the blame for it.
    It will be a godsend for Israël and its fifth column in the US, giving them the casus belli they were looking for.
    Iran will lose whatever support it still has from Russia, China and even NAM.
    Turkey, China, Switzerland … would find it very hard to continue trading with Iran and ignoring the unilateral US/EU sanctions.
    More, the US will force the UNSC to adopt the current unilateral US/EU sanctions, leaving Iran completely isolated and dependent.

    Even if Iran manages to make a few nukes, it will end up like North-Korea, only without a superpower to protect and shield it.
    And I don’t believe a few nukes are sufficient to deter a US attack.
    Look at Pakistan, which is being droned day after day.
    I also recall Colin Powell telling Musharaf a few days after 911 the US will bomb Pakistan back into the Stone Age if he dared not to cooperate on the Taliban.

    Right now, the stakes are too high to take such a risk, IMO.

  337. Smith says:

    Nasser:

    The heartening thing, is that, things are now more clear after this intense debate. Now the European opponents of our argument are outright accepting that the non-nuclear Iran will be attacked and basically the best Iranian people can do is to become like Taliban if they want to defend their honor: http://www.christusrex.org/www1/news/mullah.jpg

    Basically now, the choice given to Iranians is this: Do not develop nuclear weapons and be defenseless. We will attack you then and you become the Taliban and we will beat you like this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pf_REp2rtFw&feature=fvwrel

    I am sure, Iranians are now very re-assured and will feel safe, specially those who are countering our argument and standing against our idea. They only have to read the European comments here to understand where things are going.

  338. James Canning says:

    Sineva,

    The Bush administration would not accept any Iranian enrichment of uranium. A Romney administration would virtually certainly have refused to accept any Iranian enrichment.

    You are of course aware that Obama’s effort to reach out toward Iran was blocked by neocons and certain “liberals” who thought (or pretended to think) that Ahmadinejad would lose the 2009 election. After the election, the Obama effort continued to be blocked, on grounds that the election had been “stolen” and the US should refuse to deal with Iran.

    Iran’s enriching to 20% complicated the situation. Iran’s announcement in June 2011 that it would treble enrichment to 20%, brought on the latest round of sanctions. Obviously, Iran blundered. There was ZERO need for Iran to treble proluction of 20% U.

  339. fyi says:

    Smith says:

    November 28, 2012 at 12:41 pm

    Yes, Mr. Khamenei said as much:

    “We do not need Shah Sultan Hussein.”

    Clearly, given the situation, one has to hope for more men like Nader Shah.

  340. Smith says:

    Nasser:

    It is funny. Their whole argument now has boiled to this: “We know Iran is going to be attacked so lets just play cool till it happens and not anger the invader/s by trying to build a credible defense.”

    It is getting funnier. Basically they are saying, they are ready to be invaded and are not ready to defend themselves since they “believe” any kind of defense would bring the date of invasion “closer”. That is what they call “their ideology”.

    I am more and more feeling like a time traveler whose ideology can not be understood by the mortals here, I do not know about you and fyi.

    They do not want Iran to grow up. They think they can continue relying on “proxies” forever and bankrupting themselves bankrolling “proxies” while under sanctions. Well, Iran had a good time with proxy defense and it was effective but the time for that, is coming to an end and tomorrow’s Iran can not solely depend on proxies to defend 80 million Iranians, if the performance of Hamas against Iron Dome is anything to be taken seriously. The world is changing. So must Iran. It is time for Iran to grow into a traditional power with its own nuclear shield, military defense doctrine and its sphere of influence. Or get ready to be divided into 13 fiefdoms ruled by Sheikhs and Nawabs and Sardars.

  341. James Canning says:

    Sineva,

    Obama could not say, prior to the November elections, that he supported Iran’s right to enrich to 5% or less. That is, he could not risk saying it.

    I have never claimed Obama has said the US is willing to accept Iranian enrichment to 5% or less.

    You have to study closely what the Russians say. The Russians think a deal between the P5+1 and Iran is possible. There seems no reason to think the Russians believe Iran would agree to end enrichment to 5%. Ergo, the Russians think the US would accept Iran’s enrichment to 5%.

  342. Dan Cooper says:

    Smith

    I have been following your debate with others in this forum.

    As an independent observer and without taking sides, I would like to draw your attention to one of my old posts:

    “In today’s Iran, security is paramount and much more important than civil rights.

    If one understands the international politics and the world order, one can easily comprehend that Iran is in a very volatile and dangerous situation.

    There are so many CIA and Mossad backed groups active in Iran as we speak,

    There are powerful governments behind these groups and their ultimate objectives are:

    “Dividing Iranian people”, “de-stabilizing its government”, “regime change” and
    Establishment of a puppet government sympathetic to Israel and USA.

    By now, any person with a bit of intelligent should recognize that 33 years of sanctions has nothing to do with Iran’s nuclear program but everything to do with weakening Iran economically in order to turn its people against its government.

    During the election, Ahmadinejad gave freedom, people were expressing themselves freely in the streets of Tehran, there were televised presidential debates, such events were unprecedented in Iran’s political history.

    We all witnessed how the oppositions misused this freedom and manipulated the electoral process with help and assistance of the entire western media, orchestrated and financed By US ,which resulted in riots.

    The crackdown was absolutely necessary because the security of the entire country was at stake.

    If the Iranian government gives too much freedom, these vultures with the help of foreign agents will pounce again and destabilize the country as soon as they smell freedom.

    In 1953, the US destroyed the democratically elected government of Mosadegh and in 2009 tried but failed to topple another democratically elected government of Iran.

    It is laughable when our government with its own atrocious human’s right record uses the notion of human rights to demonize the Islamic republic.

    Iran’s human right is not perfect but comparatively speaking is one of the best in the Middle East.

    Many Iranians believe that a secular democracy is the best solution for Iran but I strongly believe that:

    Even if Iran develops one of the best secular democracies in the world but refused to recognize the criminal Zionist regime in Israel and also refuses to give up its independence, the USA would cripple it exactly the same way as it has been trying to cripple the Islamic Republic.

    People of Iran should not be under illusion that another revolution and regime change by western government would bring them prosperity.

    On the contrary, once the system is destabilized, Iran will be divide and different provinces of Iran like Kurdistan, Baluchistan, lurestan, Azerbaijan and others would seek autonomy.

    Different political groups both inside and outside of Iran, such as MEK, Monarchist , Communist and others with the help of CIA and Mossad would fight bitterly to gain power, the result of which would be a civil war the like of which, we have never seen before.

    If I were an Iranian, I would stay with the Status Quo for the time being rather than allow the US and Israel to divide and destroy Iran into another hell like Iraq and Syria.

    Remember what the USA and the Britain did to Iran’s only democracy back in 1953, they destroyed Mosadegh’s democratically elected government.

    In the current world order, there are two options left for Iran:

    Stay independent as they are now and fight to the bitter end

    OR

    Be slave to western countries.

    Knowing how proud the Iranians are about their independence, I believe there is only one option remains.”

  343. James Canning says:

    Smith,

    The Russians say Iran has to demonstrate it has no desire to build nukes, and one way to demonstrate there is no desire to build nukes is for Iran to stop enriching to 20 percent. On the other hand, if Iran stockpiles 20% U, it gives a signal that Iran might want to build nukes.

  344. Smith says:

    Photi says:
    November 28, 2012 at 9:45 am

    I am no religious scholar. But I guess what Ali meant was for a government to rule it should treat its subjects with justice. The justice on international arena comes from your power and your big stick not bribes. I did not say, Iran should bribe US. It is you and your friends who are making that assertion that Iran should bribe US by stopping its nuclear program. What I am saying it paying nothing to US and develop nuclear weapons. That is a not bribing. That is the big stick. Even Ali used to have his collection of Swords. And there is no lying in international politics. It is not like a seven year lying to his mommy. At international level, it is called policy change. And Iran should change its policy by gearing towards weaponization. Even prophets have done that. Noah, tried for centuries to educate his people and then he asked God for a policy change so God told him to start building a ship. Muhammad was under sanctions for three years and then he developed his own army. He did not lie. He changed his policy.

  345. Smith says:

    Photi says:
    November 28, 2012 at 9:59 am

    I never said that.

    But unfortunately both are true. Except that international prominence comes more with a big stick than with bribes. Bribes work for smaller nations like Dubai and Singapore. For larger countries international respect is through the big stick belonging to yourself or to your friends big stick.

  346. Smith says:

    Ataune says:
    November 28, 2012 at 10:10 am

    You can find the answer in my reply to photi.

    Yes, I believe, these issues should be discussed specially by Iranians inside Iran. There is no alternative. It is their fate being decided on global stage and Iranian public should have its say. Contrast with Fath Ali Shah. No one discussed in public the Russian threat then. Not discussing it now, means fighting a future war where all global sympathies will be with the invading force. Now, it is upto you.

  347. Smith says:

    fyi says:
    November 27, 2012 at 11:14 pm

    Fully agreed.

    And Thank You For Your Support.

    There is something called “life over limb”. As Nasser has said it here times and again, there might soon come a time for Iran to choose the survival of Iran. It is going to be a hard choice and only men with a will of steel would be able to make it.

  348. Smith says:

    M. Ali says:
    November 28, 2012 at 3:52 am

    Thank you for having read my posts.

    Bring me logic and I will change my view. Right I have not seen any.

    And no more lectures for you.

  349. Smith says:

    Sineva says:
    November 28, 2012 at 4:17 am

    He is just regurgitating the propaganda he hears on TV. He does not need to prove anything since TV is considered “truthful” and the “ultimate expert authority” in modern societies. He is just repeating the psych war against Iran to keep Iran disarmed so that when Iran’s number is up in a few years, they can invade Iran easily. As you can see, they can not go to war with the whole world at the same time. They have to go on their invasion plans one by one. But they have to make sure the party in line to be invaded in next does not prepare itself to fight since that would spoil their plan. For that they use UN resolutions, sanctions, and their TV. And it is highly effective as you can see here.

  350. Smith says:

    Cyrus_2 says:
    November 28, 2012 at 5:25 am

    I respect your decision regarding Iran. I hope you wont change your mind if a non-nuclear Iran gets attacked as the history tells us it will be. Because that will be painful in the heart.

    Thanks for your support, though.

  351. Smith says:

    Photi says:
    November 28, 2012 at 7:28 am

    Only some one who is familiar with Iran can understand what he did mean to me. The thing he said, scares the living sh!t out of someone living in Iran or even one who ever goes back. With “cyber police” running wild on the net in Iran, trying to monitor everything that goes in and comes out, your reassurances are meaningless. Iran is farther away from Norway and closer to China. When you come out and accuse someone of a charge so grave in nature, either you are an innocent stupid, in which case I do not intend to talk to, or you are threatening the living hell out of your intended victim. When he comes out and accuses me of being MKO and indirectly suggesting that I better not to go back to Iran, it gets serious. That is how these threats work.

    Let’s not forget, Iran is not and will never be an ideal Utopian society. Lots of innocent people in Iran were executed just because they were merely accused by some troll on the street of something they had not even heard about. Have you ever watched the videos of interrogation of eg. wife of Emami. These kind of people do not care about whether you are innocent or guilty or what kind of guilt you are carrying. All they care about is getting what they want. Just like a mafia. And I do not need to play victim, since I have done nothing wrong. I wont gain personally if Iran gets attacked or not. What I did was exercising my right to express my self and my concern about Iran in a larger historical context.

    These kind of people could care less if you are innocent. They could care less, if you were a completely apolitical person like me who does not care if its IRI, Shah, Communists, Western democracy, etc, etc, as long as Iran is safe and not invaded. I love Iran just like my daughter. I want her alive and not violated by a rapist, safe and sound, and I do not care if she wants or becomes a Shia, Sunni, Jew, Christian, Communist, leftist or whatever. The most important thing is Iran to be safe for me. Not invaded and not under continuous threat of invasion. Not having to fight for eight years, another mechanized army with Iranian soldiers wearing sneakers and uniforms taken off and washed from previous nights dead soldiers.

    I do not care what Iranian leaders think. What they think is very much evident from the situation on the ground in Iran and from what they say from their big TV, radio and print stations. IRI was not the sole leader, Iran has had. Iran also has had leaders like His Highness Fath Ali Shah. He believed that he had Iran secured and that he was a powerful leader. Alas, history proved him deadly wrong. His cronies signed the two most humiliating documents in Iranian history. Security is not brought about by thoughts and intentions. It is brought about by physical security tools and assets.

    If ten years before that humiliation in Iranian history, someone like fyi, Nasser or me had showed up in Iran during Fath Ali Shah’s era and had argued that Iran will be facing a grave danger to its territorial integrity, therefore it is necessary to train a good army, stock it with as much weapon as possible and try to get the technology for an iron foundry capable of making guns and a chemical factory for gun powder, instead of investing on lavish life style of His Highness and His cronies, I guess, we would not have been popular in Royal Darbaar, and probably our lives would be endangered. Not that we would have been popular with expansionist war mongering Russians either, since they would get angry for us promoting the idea that Iran should have a more powerful military deterrence and therefore spoiling their dreams about Iran.

    It is a pity that we know so little of history. We act as if history started with Iran Iraq war. Well, it didn’t. Iranian history started long before that. I personally would not have give a crap about who was in power in 19th century Iran. I could care less, if it was a religious government, secularists, democracy, or monarchy. All I would have cared at that moment for the people in charge to take the right decision and make sure Iran is secured and has a military deterrence in place so that a war can be prevented or if not prevented then Iran can come out of it as one Iran without the humiliation.

    His Highness, the King of Lions, the Leader of Iran Fath Ali Shah did not choose the right path. He was not a fool. His rule was one of the longest in Iran’s history, 37 years. He chose not to offend Russians and make them angry by Iran having the technology to build canon guns, mortars and a well equipped and trained army. He chose to keep Iran relatively disarmed in order in his fantasy to prevent the “anger” of Russians and their invasion. Not that Russia was the beacon of the technology of its day. Russia at the time was an agrarian society with only a small industrial sector. Could Iran have defended itself, if it had made the right choices back then? I believe so. Can it do it now? I believe so too.

    The reason I am perceived not listening to the opponents of my arguments is because, their arguments lack the sophistication to be listened to. If you traveled through time and went to the darbar of His Highness Fath Ali Shah Qajar (I am using Highness and the rest as a sarcasm, that is if you are not getting it) and advised him about the catastrophe to come, I am sure you would have been ridiculed, threatened and even received “counter arguments” from the darbar officials. That is the nature of the things now too.

    Let me put it in another way. What you, Cyrus_2, M.Ali and others are saying are just “regurgitation” of what we already are hearing on BBC, VOA, Fox, CNN, NYT etc etc. that Iran will not be safe with nuclear weapons. That Iran will be attacked. You are not giving us any argument here. You are regurgitating. While we have repeatedly explained in extreme detail our idea and our argument, you guys have failed to do so.

    It is you guys, that you have to prove: Iran will not be attacked if it does not develop nuclear weapons. We do not have to prove anything. Do you understand now? The history, the symptoms and the signs all, are on our side. The nations that did not have nuclear weapons were attacked and pillaged with their women raped and their babies killed. But the nations that developed nuclear weapons stand secured. These are facts. These are not Fox TV gimmicks. So the onus is on you, to prove that if Iran does not develop nuclear weapons, it will be safe. The onus, is on Iranian leaders to prove that they can defend Iran with their weak conventional military in a region increasingly hostile to Iranian national interests and with increasing numbers of anti-missile systems surrounding Iran and in effect making the only weapon Iran has ineffective.

    You see, we do not have to prove anything. Yet we did, in great detail. You and others here, on the other hand are just regurgitating either the official Iranian policy or the official US policy. Both of which I do not subscribe to, since I have my own brain. And the more I see, the more I am convinced that Iran does not have any future military deterrence doctrine against the coming war in future world. I do not see, Iran has got a guarantee from US/Russia/China to protect it in future, that is if Iran can trust such a guarantee. I do not see Iran being part of NATO. All, I see, is that Iran is standing alone by itself, while getting demonized and weakened by sanctions and internal mismanagement with growing numbers of anti-missile systems on its borders.

    And now let me here, remind you that the coming war is not going to be like Saddam and Russo-Persian War. It is going to be a “total war”. At the end of that Iran will not be allowed to remain as a unified country. It will be made into smaller fiefdoms so that they can be coerced into towing western interests. The weak Iranian military defenses are not deterrent enough to scare powerful US military. The only thing that increases the price for an invasion is if Iran has nuclear weapons. Our case is proven. Iran is going to be attacked regardless. It is too late not to be attacked. But at least even in worst case scenario, Iran has some chance to avert that attack by going nuclear. But without nuclear weapons an attack is guaranteed.

    Without nuclear weapons Iran will be dangerously exposed. Again let me illustrate it differently. There is this dangerous neighborhood of rapists. There are some girls living in that place. I advise a girl to get a small handgun with a few bullets. You advise against it, saying rapists have more guns and more bullets and a girl going to get a handgun is going to be more at risk by attracting attention and “angering” the rapists. I say, the statistics for that particular neighborhood show that, all the girls who were raped were unarmed and could not resist, while no girl that has the hand gun was ever raped. But you guys do not understand this. You keep regurgitating the BBC, that the gun will make the girls unsafe without proving how so, while the facts and statistics say otherwise.

    You see, I have given up watching the satellite channels, BBC/CNN and the Iranian state propaganda channels. So I am not very keen on their regurgitated content here too. So if some one comes out with a new idea and counters our argument with equally logical argument, well enough I will welcome it, but I am too old now to listen and engage with people who are just regurgitating the propaganda contents I shunned long ago. I have no interest to answer back to these.

    Furthermore, I am sure tomorrow when a non-nuclear Iran will be attacked (it is only a matter of time) and the Iranian humiliation will be watched live HD/3D by over 7 billion people on TV, you guys will advise to quickly start working on a nuclear deterrence shield in a tunnel somewhere. Alas, then the time for that has passed and Iran will be raped as was pointed out by a member of the “master race” here. It will be too late then. Actually as you said, it is already late, but still, Iran has some chance as long as US is in Afghanistan.

    My criticism of Iranian government is not political since as I said I do not have any political interests, which I believe is a BS subject to even talk about. My criticism if you go back and read is highly specific and technical. I do not care if Iran wants to be Shia or liberal or communist or socialist. But I care that Iran should have the technology to manufacture, its medicines and its CT scan machines and its own air crafts and when the import mafia even makes the grave stone makers unemployed by importing cheap Chinese grave stones, I criticize that. Be that mafia in Muhammad Reza shah’s time, in Fath Ali Shah’s time or in Akbar Shah’s time. It does not matter. It is a technical criticism and has nothing to do with politics. Even China allows that. Not only China but it was even allowed in post-Stalin USSR too. I do not know why basiji import mafia is so much sensitive to it. I guess it is because they will lose their lucrative money making business they have got so much addicted to.

  352. Bussed-in Basiji says:

    Boot up the arse was people who were cheering and dancing during Ashura during the fitna, not Smith/Qazvini/IQ 146. I doubt he would be brave enough to leave his comfort zone i.e. sitting behind his computer and go onto the street- much less a battlefield.

    Anyway his rants are getting tedious…neither “logos” nor “pathos” nor “ethos” only “egos” :-)

  353. Ataune says:

    @Smith

    I didn’t notice any threat in Kooshy’s response either. If you are implying that him (her) mentionning travel to Iran and in the same sentence associating your ideas with the ones of the Greens or MKO is a threat to your safety you should say so out loud and explain why.

    Your love for Iran and your belief in the nuclear deterrence for Iranians is fine and informed people can have intelligent debate on it. Like for example your initial assertions on this issue and the valid rebuttal from RSH on this thread – although I want to emphasize that I don’t agree with some of his war predictions.

    But my question, which remained un-answered, was do you think that in the current political context Iranian elite, inside or outside Iran, should bring up subjects that are highly contreversial and divisive ? Knowing that the policy decisions regarding those subjects need not to be necesseraly debated pubicly.

  354. Photi says:

    or let’s take these two educations from smith:

    a) Iran should lie and bribe its way to international prominence

    b) Iran’s internal problems are due to the Iranian tendency to lie and bribe

  355. Richard Steven Hack says:

    The Register picks up on the Iran drone hoax…

    Iran’s Photoshop FAIL: ‘New drone’ actually Japanese university bird
    http://www.theregister.co.uk/2012/11/28/iran_drone/

  356. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Gaza War may strengthen Iran’s hand
    http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Middle_East/NK29Ak01.html

    I disagree. All it did was emphasize how Israel MUST attack Lebanon and US/NATO MUST attack Syria before an Iran war can be prosecuted.

    Kaveh is once again engaging in wishful thinking.

  357. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Israel finds Gaza easier to attack than Lebanon – analysis
    http://www.dailystar.com.lb/News/Politics/2012/Nov-27/196225-israel-finds-gaza-easier-to-attack-than-lebanon—analysis.ashx#axzz2DRy0qHtQ

    While true, this analysis does not address the issue of whether Israel MUST attack Lebanon prior to any Iran war if it does not want to suffer serious economic – if not actual infrastructure – damage during that war, regardless of whether that war is started by Israel or the US or anyone else.

    The evidence that the recent Gaza operation was more than just another case of “mowing the grass” – as the article puts it – is because of the Syrian situation. It makes sense for Israel to attack Gaza now, then Lebanon later when the Syrian situation has escalated to the point where an Israeli incursion into Syria to attack Hizballah in the Bekaa Valley becomes feasible, whether by US/NATO airstrikes or even merely Syrian insurgent successes.

  358. Photi says:

    Smith,

    “Good luck. And once again forgive me for trying to educate you.”

    I am more than willing to learn, from you or from anyone else.

    Some of what I have learned from you is that:

    a) Iran should lie and bribe its way to international prominence and security.

    b) Imam Ali (as) teaches that for a society to progress, justice is tantamount.

    My logic says a & b contradict. Would you care to reconcile these?

  359. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Syria Claims Turkey Committed “Air Piracy,” New Documents Say
    http://www.propublica.org/article/syria-claims-turkey-committed-air-piracy-new-documents-say

  360. Richard Steven Hack says:

    IAEA Server Breached, Scientists’ Email Addresses Spilled
    http://threatpost.com/en_us/blogs/iaea-server-breached-scientists-email-addresses-spilled-112712

    Quote

    A number of reports are identifying Parastoo as a pro-Iranian group, but their allegiance to Iran remains unclear. However, the group reassures the IAEA that it will keep safe other information accessed on the compromised server unless “a western-favored element entertains another sip of motorbike & magnetbomb cocktail.”

    End Quote

    I’d say these guys are definitely pro-Iran, if not necessarily Iranians themselves. It would be nice if they could get in to actual servers and publish the internal emails and reports about the Iran case file.

    Proving the IAEA is biased via their own internal documents would be a valuable PR coup.

  361. Richard Steven Hack says:

    M. Ali: “(except Hack, who I suspect has Iranian blood)”

    Heh, sorry, Northern European all the way, except maybe for some Native American blood in a great grandmother. But Northern Europeans have a multi-thousand year tradition of being mean SOBs. Must be the cold – or the cold blood… :-)

    “when an Iranian believes in something, then nothing would change it. We are an emotional, unreasonable, illogical people at heart”

    Glad you said it and not me. Frankly I don’t see any difference in any nationality. Almost all humans are emotional, unreasonable and illogical – not to mention fearful and malicious.

  362. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Cyrus_2: “Then what can/should Iran do to avoid a US attack, apart from building more and more accurate long and middle-range missiles?”

    Basically nothing. I don’t believe Iran can avoid an attack – just win one after quite a bit of damage has been suffered. Basically Iran has to deal with the US the way the Iraqi insurgents and the Afghan Taliban have – bleed the US to death over years. It’s the only way a Third World country can deal with a superpower – use Fourth Generation War methods.

    Unfortunate but true.

    At least Iran is very well equipped to do this because they have allies like Hizballah that can cause a lot of trouble for Israel and the US both in the region and in the US if they have a mind to. Iran also has plenty of militia to work as insurgents in country, and can also cause trouble using its Qods Force assets internationally. It’s certainly better off in this regard than either Iraq or the Taliban.

    My recommendation has always been to use terrorism in the US to bring the war home to the US. Some people here have rejected that suggestion. But if you don’t attack US assets where they are most vulnerable, you’re not prosecuting the war properly. Otherwise you’re going to be limited – once the conventional weapons like missiles run out – to bleeding US grunts in the immediate vicinity – which takes a long time to cause a public reaction in the US. If you want to shorten the war, you have to bring it to the homeland of the superpower you’re fighting. Besides 9/11, I don’t think this has ever been done, however.

    And it has to be done right to be effective – just blowing up buses like the Gazan radicals do is ineffective and just ticks the enemy population off making them more likely to support the war. You have to attack the enemy leadership and the people behind them – make the war painful for the people who ARE the real enemy. This should be the REAL meaning of the term “precision targeting.”

  363. Photi says:

    Smith, this quote of yours demonstrates your conflation of the issues:

    “The same they proposed later on for CTBT. If those who want Iran to be non-nuclear, why dont they pressure India to give up its nukes? Why they are against Israel singing NPT? Why they are banning Iran to buy conventional arms to defend itself? Why Iran should not have air defense? The problems did not start with nuclear problem at all. The nuclear problem came quite recently. Iran could not buy arms during Saddam war and could not buy arms even those of defensive nature after the war long before Iran had even started its nuclear program. In fact by 1998 when India and Pakistan tested their nukes, Iran did not have a single working centrifuge. Zilch.”

    NO ONE here who is in favor of a strong Iran would disagree with these points. Of course Iran needs a strong defense, air defense, land, sea, whatever. But the Iranian planners, as they were conceiving their defense doctrine, have understood the limitations and potentialities of the Iranian nation. Probably their biggest foe is the US, and given the grotesque size of the US military, Iran’s defense doctrine has necessarily been one grounded in asymmetric warfare. In the meantime, it seems obvious Iran has been increasing its internal abilities to produce a domestic national defense and armaments industry. THese activities are steadily increasing Iran’s conventional capabilities, but all the same, they are smart enough they know they cannot take on the US directly in some sort of attempt to project conventional military power outside the IRanian borders (not that they want to).

  364. Photi says:

    Smith, part of the problem here is that you are conflating many issues together. You are using Iran’s rejection of nuclear weapons to argue that the leaders in Iran do not care about Iran’s security. This is totally ridiculous. Just because the Iranian leaders have chosen a path that is different than the one you would follow does not mean they do not care about Iran’s security. They have rejected your idea, not Iranian security. Your rage at the regime is narcissistic in nature.

  365. Photi says:

    Smith says:
    November 27, 2012 at 9:18 pm

    Smith, please quote where you have been threatened. You may be being teased about your narcissism, but i have not read any threat directed at you. I do recall reading something about a boot up your arse, but i don’t think that was literal.

  366. Cyrus_2 says:

    Richard

    You say a few Iranian nukes won’t serve as a credible deterrence against a US attack, which is my believe as well.
    You also say that Iran’s current conventional capabilities won’t be enough as well.
    Then what can/should Iran do to avoid a US attack, apart from building more and more accurate long and middle-range missiles?

    Smith

    I have to agree with Photi.
    The whole world is watching Iran.
    The risk of Iran being caught red-handed while building nukes is just too high.
    How can Iran divert its nuclear program to weaponisation without being detected?
    What will be the consequences if Iran gets caught in the middle of a weaponisation effort?

    Apart from that, the ad hominem attacks against you and others need to stop indeed.
    So I hope you stay here.

  367. Iranian@Iran says:

    Iranians are a reasonable people and their behaviour after the Revolution has always been reasonable. It’s the US and its western allies that have been behaving irrationally at least since 1953. Iranians beat back Saddams armed forces professionally and honorably despite the sanctions and the chemical weapons western countries gave to Saddam. Iranians support the Islamic Republic and I can’t see how someone can feel threatened on this discussion board. Those of us living in Iran are regularly being threated by uncivilized western powers. We are the ones who should feel threatened!

  368. Sineva says:

    James Canning says:
    November 27, 2012 at 1:53 pm
    You make these statements without the slightest proof to back them up,has obama ever said he accepted irans right to enrich?,I don`t think so in fact his actions say the exact opposite,if it were just about limiting enrichment a deal could have been done ages ago the fact that it has not shows that the west has no intention of agreeing any deal that allows any enrichment,because enrichment gives iran a potential nuclear capability and that is something that the west cannot accept

  369. Sineva says:

    Nasser says:
    November 27, 2012 at 8:57 pm
    Well said!

  370. M. Ali says:

    Smith, I just want to respond to the below,

    “I am getting tired of these guys. I came here, because I thought it was populated by really sane and logical people. Look at it now. They are taking on me, getting personal and family stuff. They are threatening. I came with lots of logic and perspective. Now I am not so sure it has the effect it should since the audience seem to be either considering themselves “exceptional” and better “humans” than Iranians or they are outright “regime people” threatening me with arrest and hurling abuse. I guess, I will decide later on, whether I want to remain here any longer. It is unbelievable. They can not even tolerate a new idea or concept, both the “master race” people here and the “regime people”. ”

    I think you are responsible for a lot of the above. You yourself have not shown to be open to other opinions. I’ve noticed that your arguments are in the form of lectures, you are sure you are right, and you are sure we are wrong, and if anyone says otherwise, you get irritated. And I’ve noticed that you yourself do hurl personal attacks (but none directed at me, so I really have no personal complaints).

    However, I’m not saying you are unique in this case. There are a lot of intelligent posts here, even the ones I don’t agree with are presented with great thought and facts. THere is a lot of learn from your posts, your knowledge about the world militaries is very interesting. And fyi & unknown unknown & bib & Nasser& james & Hack & so on, all have posts that are explained well, and with detail, and I thank everyone for making the site a pleasure to read rather than posts on 99% of other political sites that are devoid of intellect in the comments section. However, the same people here that are intelligent are also really stubborn and cocksure. Everyone here is so sure that he or she (usually he) is right that they refuse to listen to anyone else and get ANNOYED AND OFFENDED when people disagree with them.

    Of course, the most stubborn people in this forum is usually us Iranians (except Hack, who I suspect has Iranian blood), when an Iranian believes in something, then nothing would change it. We are an emotional, unreasonable, illogical people at heart, with a faith-based system in our gene, that is, even if we have an Iranian athiest, they still decide based on faith (in something) rather than cold logic, and we are ready to go crazy when it is disputed. Iran is probably the only country that exagerrates everything. Nothing is “I don’t like it” but instead its “DEATH TO THE THING I DON’T LIKE”. Our friendly remarks are phrases like, “I’m your slave”, “I’m your servant”, “I want to eat your liver”, “I’m under your shadow”, “May I be sacrificed for you”, “I’m the dust under your feet”, etc.

    Basically, what I’m saying is, chill down.

  371. M. Ali says:

    Nasser, I think you are right when you say our risk assesment is different. I agree with a lot of what you say, we only differ on our approach to it.

    Of course, Iran needs to be able to better defend herself. But I think nukes is not the way to go, because it not only is risky going towards the nukes path, but also it isn’t as great a detertant as you and Smith and fyi make it out to be.

    We’re not seeing eye on eye on the nukes path, and I see that Smith shares your reasoning. The argument seems to be that, due to the costs involved, USA will not attack Iran at the moment, and you add, even if they do attack, it won’t prevent Iran from getting the nukes. I think it is a reasonable argument, and I see a lot of sense in that viewpoint. However, in my mind, the risk is very high. Now, I’m not an authority in this subject, and I thank God I’m not in a decision making position in Iran, because the responsibility would be too big bear.

    But for intellectual exercise, I enjoy such online discussions, and my argument is that USA and Buddies will not allow Iran to get nukes. Iran has many countries that directly show their contempt for Iran, and these countries will join hands to wage a huge war on Iran to prevent it. Look how much Iran is under threat when Iran is NOT going after nukes, if it does, I’m almost certain there would be a war. It would be politically suicide for the west NOT to go to war. America, Israel, and all of Europe would directly get involved in this war. But behind the screens, the Gulf countries, while they won’t like to directly fire missles into Iran, will give so much concessions to the west, that for the west, the war might as well be free of cost. Countries like Russia and China and India and Pakistan and Turkey and Jordan and Egypt and Morrocco and Tunisia and Libya and Yemen and etc etc will secretly be happy Iran is being attacked.

    I KNOW Iran doesn’t have much friends. I KNOW Iran can be attacked in the future. But my argument is that to try to prevent a future attack, I don’t want to be attacked today!

    There are so many other options available. Iran can go on its current path, and strengthen itself with others means. Here is some of the ways I would advise:

    1) Strengthen proxies, help Hezbollah be more prominent in Lebanon, try to get Hamas completely integrated and depedant on Iran, so the little shit doesn’t badmouth Iran whenever it thinks it doesn’t need Iran

    2) Make new proxies, post-revolution or messy countries are ripe for them, Tunisia, Libya, Sudan, Yemen, Egypt, etc.

    3) Have strong partnership with opposition groups in countries that have possibility of future revolution, and not just Shia groups

    4) Speaking of which, spend millions, if not billions, on a PR campaign for the Sunni layman, to present Shia Iran as fuzzy, friendly, likable, unthreatening, ready to embrace the Islamic world, etc, etc

    5) Get economically tied to all neighbouring countries, so that a war on Iran would be an economic disaster for them, even if Iran doesn’t fire missles on their soil, that is, recession in Iran being recession in the middle east, so it would be in their interest to not have an Iranian recession

    6) Be an energy supplier to more countries, so again, Iran’s stability would be their stability

    7) Buy technology as Smith says, which I agree, buy, steal, learn, duplicate, export.

    8) Heavily train the army in new forms, advanced forms of warfare. Scrap this useless mandatory military service, all these soldiers are trained in is being fodders, which they could be thought in 6 days if teh war comes rather than 2 years which is done now. HAve the military be voluntary service, but with good pay, strong training, and big investment.

    9) Have sleeper cells everywhere, specially in Europe and western countries.

    10) and so on

    This to me would be staying on the safe side, but doing all one can do to secure itself more and more.

    The reason our cost/benefit analysis is different is this,
    Cost: I believe the cost of going the nuke path is higher than what you believe in

    and also

    Benefit: I believe the benefit is not as high as you think

    Who exactly would Iranian with nukes nuke? Would Iran nuke Saudi Arabia, nuke Mecca, or have piligrims stay away from Kabah because it is radioactive, therefore having Iran be responsible for destroying Hajj for 1.6 billion Muslims, thereby making a quarter of the world hate Iran for all eternity?

    Or would Iran nuke UAE, Kuwait, Qatar, all these tiny Gulf countries, and massacre all the Iranians that live there, or have investments there, or have families there? Would we Iranians be happy if our government nukes Dubai and see all our investments go to dust, or if we have no investments, at least, see our friends and family get baked by our government?

    Or will we nuke Israel, and kill all those Palestanians that we have been telling the world we love for the past 30+ years? We’d be hated by all the white people that were saying that Iran is the new Nazi germany for finally nuking Jews, but we’d also be hated by all the Muslims for killing the palestanians and destroying so many Islamic mosques. Hey, at least, it might bring Muslims and Jews together.

    Who exactly will we nuke? Like I said before, if there is a person on the helm that is a bit crazy and decides that he will nuke our neighbours, the world would join hands, and clean Iran from the map. They might suffer a bit of economical distress due to the disruptions of the oil, but they would prefer that then let Iran go on la-di-da after nuking someone.

  372. kooshy says:

    “Right now they do not militarily attack Iran because of Iran’s ability to disrupt global oil/gas supplies and thus harm their economies. But this is not a long term guarantee of security. Since these Western countries perceive an attack on Iran at the present time to be prohibitively costly, they presently are trying to weaken Iran with a combination of propaganda, diplomatic isolation, economic pressure, assassinations, internal destabilization, selling arms to Iran’s enemies and undermining Iran’s regional standing. It is clear that they are buying their time, weakening Iran in the meantime to ease a future attack. Iran has no long term guarantees of security against these countries. Iran needs a more deterrent over time to be truly safe.”

    You would need to address why didn’t they directly attack Iran 30 years ago or 15 years ago when a barrel of oil was $10 and Iran was much weaker internally externally financially militarily and politically, why the threat of Iran has been increased?, you may argue it is because Iran has become a nuclear capable country beside that nothing else about Iranian body politics has changed. If this is so isn’t that a nuclear deterrence in herself Iran as a nuclear capable country? Why than you need to build an actual Bomb what benefit you get from that? Besides agitating the entire region and lose whatever current support you have. There are multiple reasons why Iran has not been directly attacked or will not be directly attacked (a new limited proxy ethnic war is a possibility but not detrimental) they all have to do with Iran itself as a nation state with a fierce proud nationalist population and in a very balancing geostrategic position on the map.

  373. kooshy says:

    Smith says:
    November 27, 2012 at 8:47 pm

    “Your basiji, and your threats against me are useless. It only shows how low you have sunk, threatening other people with arrest, torture and death in order to silence them. Your veiled threats against me, that you are going to arrest me and torture and probably me, is enough to expose you.”

    Smith

    I think you must not have been reading my reply or perhaps you have been reading someone else’s reply, not only I have not threaten you I have no intention of doing so to you or anyone else, nor I have any mean to do so, but for me, it’s amazing to see instead of counter arguing on why a nuclear armed Iran will elevate her deterrence, you resort to play a victim of verbal abuse and under a threat of arrest (nice counter argument not much different than the style of debate used by the Israeli general in the video you posted) you claim you are threaten to be arrested on what count? For arguing Iran needs a nuclear bomb to counter US, if that’s a cause for arrest Mr. Shariatmadari of Kyhan should have been arrested a long time ago. When I said Iran’s opposition new strategy is to get the US to attack Iran I meant it, that was not a threat to you or Mr. Rajavi that was an alarm to Iranians in general on how the opposition is coming to the Chalabi solution for a regime change, just when Iran is fighting to solidify her 200 year war for independence.

    You need to argue why a few Iranian Nuclear war heads will necessarily deter US more than already is deterred without fielding a few Iranian nuclear bombs? Would Iran ever be a nuclear threat to US’s mainland? If the answer is no than how and why is US going or need to be deterred more than it is now? Why a legal nuclear capable Iran under NPT (A Japan Option) is not enough to deter a nuclear attack on Iran from a calculating actor? Why you think a nuclear armed Shieh Iran will not agitate her Sunni Muslim neighbors.
    Would you be threatening Dubai or Bahrain with a nuclear attack if either country allowed US to use their territory to attack Iran?
    Would you do that to Afghanistan or Turkey? Would you threaten to nuclear attack European countries who participate in attacking Iran?

    As said I am not a Bassiji nor I see anything wrong with being a Basiji or Hezbolahi etc. I am not and was not brought up religious but accept Iran as a Shieh religious country, I strongly believe if it wasn’t for Shieh Islam, Iran as a part and parcel of Sunni western Asia would have been divided by Sykes–Picot Agreement along her ethnic lines. It’s not too far to say that since the tobacco movement most of nationalist Iranians where of a religious class than the western educated secular class. That includes leaders of both Iranian revolutions for national independence.

  374. fyi says:

    Smith says:

    November 27, 2012 at 9:18 pm

    Well, I hope that you will continue contributing to this site.

    As I stated earlier, I was alone initially when I argued that Iran needs to build nuclear weapons for the reasons of state cohesion and security.

    I am pleased that you have supplied numerous arguments and discussion issues supporting my initial positions.

    Note however that Iranian planners have not confined themselves to defending Iran from within Iranian borders.

    I think basically Iranians are present in Pakistan, Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, Palestine, and Lebanon.

    They owe it to their allies not be defeated or destroyed.

    I believe that Mr. Khamenei and many other Iranian leaders are aware of this.

    West, that is Axis Powers, cannot reassure Iran since they do not have that power. They cannot give Iran absolutely iron-clad guarantees that she will not be attacked by nuclear weapons.

    None of these Nine Big Powers that Mr. Canning so repeatedly has mentioned have that power.

    That is why Ian will become a nuclear weapons state.

    If Axis Powers were smart, they would have made every effort in the book to postpone that day but they have made every effort in the book to hasten that day – likely because Iran (Shia) grabbed Iraq and did not agree to giving it up.

    Geopolitically, what is needed is a new version of the Sassanian Confederacy to push al these non-Muslims out of the heartland of Islam.

  375. fyi says:

    Photi says:

    November 27, 2012 at 9:58 pm

    In order to bring regime collapse, between 5 to 7 percent of a states population must be killed.

    That is, between 4 to 5.6 million Iranians have to be killed for the Iranian state to cease to exits.

    To my knowledge, that can only be achieved by nuclear weapons although I have read that a class of bombs called Fuel-Air Explosives come close.

    US has them, Paksitan does not.

    The time for leaving NPT is not passed for Iran, but it has not yet arrived.

    Per Mr. Smith’s arguments, nculear-capable Iran is absolutely necessary for Iran.

    A war with US will not alter the fundamentals of Iranian security; it will give the chance for Iran to finally exit NPT and start building nuclear weapons.

    Again, based on Internet sources, I have come to the conclusion that Iran has not been dependent on foreign imports for her nuclear developments. I assume that this has meant weaponization as well.

  376. Smith says:

    fyi says:
    November 27, 2012 at 8:47 pm

    Oh, I am sorry. I did not know that being new here, though I have been doing some reading since some time, but only casually. It must have been difficult seeing this kind of resistance from both invading foreigners as well as Iranians. Well, with raw threats and abuse I am getting here, you might soon become here, again the sole person with best interest of Iran at heart.

    I can only hope if the corruption and nepotism that has taken so much root in Iranian culture is uprooted once and for all. Iran can live and progress under sanctions. But it can not progress with such levels of corruption. As Imam Ali had said, a society can progress with kufr but not without justice. I am not as hopeful as you are, though. With these kind of people and the mafia around, things are going to be very difficult.

    And you are right about Khamenei not being able to back track on the issue, now that he has come so far. Even his staunch local opponents calling for his overthrow are already laughing at him if he ever touches the lethal gallon. He must show something valuable (eg a nuclear shield) for all this suffering people are going through. If he drinks the gallon, I think he will have to quit as well. Warning: The sarcasm and irony is high ahead: http://nurizad.info/?p=19900

  377. fyi says:

    Nasser says:

    November 27, 2012 at 8:59 pm

    You wrote:

    “…they alienated one super power by taking their diplomats hostage…”

    Look at the fate of Yugoslavia and wake up.

    Chinese soldiers were shooting wounded US soldiers in Red Cross Ambulances during Korean War.

    But now China and US are great friends!

    International relations are not based on being nice; it is based on power; thuggery writ at large.

  378. Smith says:

    Nasser says:
    November 27, 2012 at 8:59 pm

    These guys are delusional. They think that they can live without any kind of solid military defense only having a few dozen old rusty fighters and scare the rest of the world with their teeth and nails. Well, the Iranian population might be scared of basiji teeth and nails but the US military is not and will not be. These guys at the end with their short sighted planning will cause the destruction of Iran.

    They are taking up loads of enemies without having any defense for it. I am not saying, start building air craft carriers, nuclear submarines etc etc. I am saying a minimum defense is necessary for Iran to live in such a dangerous territory while Iranian population are the most demonized in the world. But the nut jobs do not get this. Either capitulate to west and let them come in and control Iran’s resources. Or prepare for their anger. These guys think that they can challenge the world’s powers and then go back to their sleep acting like nothing has happened. The powers will come back to you with vengeance. Now, they are busy, but it does not mean, they have forgotten. They do not rule the world, just because the world loves them. They rule the world because whoever challenged their rule got the big stick. So these guys be better ready for it, since it is coming.

  379. Smith says:

    Photi says:
    November 27, 2012 at 9:58 pm

    You are right, I accept my folly. Iran does not need nuclear weapons. Please excuse me for my ignorance. Iran is fully capable of defending itself using RPG and Chinese importing basiji against something like this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4glCVuQHTWY

    Good luck. And once again forgive me for trying to educate you.

  380. Smith says:

    All,

    The import mafia in Iran is really getting angry with me. I do not know to be afraid or be happy. I guess, I will be happy since at least I know I am standing on the right. It would be a dishonor to let the import mafia hurling abuse at parents and threatening one with arrest for having written something here to win the day. Ah.

    I can only say this: AAhhhh. Very disappointed. Where are you, the men with no self claim? How we reached where we are? http://www.pic1.iran-forum.ir/images/up3/96350231505515004932.jpg

    And yeah, India, US and Japan will save you guys and Iran. There is no need to worry: http://elahe89.persiangig.com/DSC00141.JPG

  381. Photi says:

    Smith,

    Iran’s time to build nuclear weapons was either decades ago, or sometime in the future. The current posture of the Israelis and the well orchestrated observations of the IAEA and all the international espionage means the moment Iran decides to build nuclear weapons, it will be detected by others. When the (currently non-existent) program is detected, those who want war will have their pretext. I think the odds that the warmongers will succeed in using that pretext to start a war are quite high, higher than the odds of a war are now without a weapons program. At least if Iran is attacked now, they cannot be blamed except by the guilty ones. If the Iranians decide to go for nuclear weapons now, much of the current international resistance to such a war against Iran will crumble. Iran, as a sovereign nation may have the right to pursue nuclear weapons, but the costs of doing so seem quite high, higher than the weapons are worth.

  382. Smith says:

    fyi says:
    November 27, 2012 at 4:12 pm

    Dear,

    I am getting tired of these guys. I came here, because I thought it was populated by really sane and logical people. Look at it now. They are taking on me, getting personal and family stuff. They are threatening. I came with lots of logic and perspective. Now I am not so sure it has the effect it should since the audience seem to be either considering themselves “exceptional” and better “humans” than Iranians or they are outright “regime people” threatening me with arrest and hurling abuse. I guess, I will decide later on, whether I want to remain here any longer. It is unbelievable. They can not even tolerate a new idea or concept, both the “master race” people here and the “regime people”.

    The opposing side of my argument presented nothing except one liner nonsense in addition to others writing long lines of nonsense in essence meaning: “We will attack Iran without nuclear weapons and we will attack Iran with nuclear weapons, so die. Whatever you do, die. There is no way out, die”. They want Iran to remain disarmed so that they can later on attack it easily. If they are so much against nuclear weapons but care about Iranian security, they should remove NATO nukes from Turkey. Pakistan has already proposed to make a nuke free South Asia if India gives up its nukes and signs NPT. Pakistan has clearly stated that if India signs NPT, so will Pakistan.

    The same they proposed later on for CTBT. If those who want Iran to be non-nuclear, why dont they pressure India to give up its nukes? Why they are against Israel singing NPT? Why they are banning Iran to buy conventional arms to defend itself? Why Iran should not have air defense? The problems did not start with nuclear problem at all. The nuclear problem came quite recently. Iran could not buy arms during Saddam war and could not buy arms even those of defensive nature after the war long before Iran had even started its nuclear program. In fact by 1998 when India and Pakistan tested their nukes, Iran did not have a single working centrifuge. Zilch.

    Did west re-assure Iran then? The answer is no. Did they pressure India and Pakistan for disarmament? The answer is no. West even blocked Iran to buy only five units of S-300. Only five. They have stopped Iran from buying any sophisticated air defense for the past 30 years. A weapon that is completely defensive in nature. This, despite the fact that Iran is being threatened daily and the whole region from Pakistan to Turkey and from Saudi Arabia to Iraq are buying sophisticated fighter bombers. Should Iran feel secured, just because it has a bunch of basijis? Can basijis defend Iran against F-15 and F-16 strikes? Basijis can not even counter a rational argument with a rational argument, how can they defend Iran against a technologically invading force that in comparison to Iran is like comparing an outer space alien invasion of France.

    Even those who are not friends of Iran concede that Iran is surrounded and Pakistan is a threat. This video is three years old but still remains accurate picturing a small portion of threats Iran is facing (from the perspective of Iran’s enemies): http://fora.tv/2009/10/20/Uncommon_Knowledge_Robert_Baer_and_Victor_Davis_Hanson

  383. Nasser says:

    Smith,

    Who needs F-14s and armor when you can rely on human wave attacks!

    My point was basically that you have to make some choices in life and can’t have it all. These Iranians seem to think otherwise. Ok so they alienated one super power by taking their diplomats hostage. That wasn’t enough. Now they decide to make enemies out of the regional countries too. They would scare regional countries by calling for the overthrow of monarchies; and do their best to provoke Saddam. It is bad enough they alienated one super power; they then decided to alienate the other one too with their Afghan policy. And all the while gutting their military. Is it any surprise Saddam attacked when he did?

    I think many Iranians are seriously ignorant of their regional environment. They wish for nothing more than Iran to be like one of those Scandinavian countries. But Iran’s geography is such that it will always be in danger. But these people want to use all of Iran’s oil money to run a welfare state and not make hard choices and spend the necessary amounts on defense. It is completely irresponsible.

  384. Nasser says:

    M.Ali says:

    “What I don’t understand with you, fyi, or Smith’s argument is this,
    1. Iran needs nuclear weapons to prevent it being attacked
    2. No one dares (or can’t) attack Iran if it wants to get nuclear weapons
    However, this two statements don’t make logical sense. If Iran needs nukes to defend itself from attacks, then it CAN be attacked, making the second point invalid. If the second point is valid (it can’t be attacked if it goes the nuke weapons route), then the first point becomes invalid.”

    - > Those weren’t my arguments. A nuanced reading would show you that there is no logical contradiction. I would revise those two statements to read:
    1. Iran needs nuclear weapons to insure her survival.
    2. Iran has the means to acquire those weapons.

    - And if I understand the core of your arguments correctly, it is this:

    1) The risks are just too great for Iran to acquire nukes. Iran invites unnecessary dangers on herself by doing so and would in fact be much safer by not going down this path.

    2) Iran doesn’t have the means of acquiring the nukes necessary to guarantee her defense. Either she doesn’t have the technological capacity, or cannot have an arsenal of adequate size for a credible defense, or can be prevented by outside powers from acquiring such capabilities. Basically Iran has no chance of success anyway so why invite danger by going down this path.

    - > Regarding the first point, the dispute between us seems to be a matter of risk assessment. I of course cannot speak for Smith or fyi but broadly speaking you very much seem to disagree with us regarding the dangers facing Iran. Mr. Smith and I have argued that the dangers facing Iran are so great that it would be utterly irresponsible for the Iranian government not to pursue nuclear weapons; and I have called such a move strategic suicide. You argue that no; in fact the risks of pursuing nuclear weapons are greater. That pursuing nuclear weapons could possibly bring the worst form of disaster to Iran.

    Your worst case scenario for Iran seems to be a massive aerial bombardment of Iran. I think you wrongly perceive this to be the worst possible outcome for Iran. I don’t think that to be a worse outcome than nuclear bombardment of several of Iran’s major cities. Nor do I see that as a worse outcome than Iran’s loss of territorial integrity or political independence.

    The risks facing Iran are very real. Iran is tied in a fierce geopolitical contest with the richest and most powerful countries on Earth – US/EU. I think some Iranians wrongly perceive these countries’ intentions being one of regime change. They actually want to crush the Iranian state. Right now they do not militarily attack Iran because of Iran’s ability to disrupt global oil/gas supplies and thus harm their economies. But this is not a long term guarantee of security. Since these Western countries perceive an attack on Iran at the present time to be prohibitively costly, they presently are trying to weaken Iran with a combination of propaganda, diplomatic isolation, economic pressure, assassinations, internal destabilization, selling arms to Iran’s enemies and undermining Iran’s regional standing. It is clear that they are buying their time, weakening Iran in the mean time to ease a future attack. Iran has no long term guarantees of security against these countries. Iran needs a more deterrent over time to be truly safe.

    Iran has a lot of regional enemies. It has territorial disputes with neighbors. Internally, it is a multi ethnic country and has some secessionist tendencies within her broader society. Her most powerful enemies have vocally expressed their desire to capitalize on this and chip away at Iran’s territorial integrity. Some enemies like the Saudis are implacably hostile and are opposed to the Iranian state itself.

    Iran also happens to be in the vicinity of several nuclear powers. I think Israel is the least of Iran’s concerns in this regard. But that state is still nuclear armed; and hostile. A far more dangerous worry should be though a destabilized or hostile Pakistan. Iranian planners have to account for the fact that they have been victims of WMD attacks and international institutions and norms couldn’t protect her then and wouldn’t be able protect her in the future. Iranians also have been explicitly threatened with nuclear bombardment by several international actors. Add to this the fact that Iranians have been thoroughly demonized in the global media making mass murder of Iranians almost acceptable.

    Iran doesn’t have the means to confront all these threats through conventional means. Iranians like you also tend to assign too much weight to public opinion thinking that would restrain governments. But you lot tend to forget that Baathist Iraq was a Shiite majority country but that didn’t stop that country from waging war against Shiite Iran. The only way to protect against these multitudes of threats is by having a credible threat of nuclear retaliation.

    When Mr. Smith laid out in great detail many of the dangers that confound Iran he was dismissed as alarmist and sensationalist. But every serious defense and risk analysis is predicated on the worst case scenario. Any responsible Iranian government has to address those threats. Given all this I think it would be the height of irresponsibility for Iran to forego nuclear weapons.

    M.Ali, your risk assessment seems to be very different. You argue Iran faces greater dangers by pursuing weapons than all the other threats I mentioned above and others have talked about previously on this forum. I simply don’t agree with that. I would argue that even if pursuit of nuclear weapons were to invite an attack, Iran should still try to obtain nukes. Because otherwise Iran invites far greater dangers in the future. The US Air Force certainly can devastate Iran by aerial bombardment but that is a more preferable alternative to me than having Iran partitioned along ethnic lines, or to have nuclear bombs dropped on Iran’s major cities, or fighting an eight year war against the Wahabis or Turks or Pakistanis.

    - Now it is true that I don’t fully share your risk assessment regarding the likelihood of an attack if Iran pursues nuclear bombs. I should point out that I have NEVER argued that Iran cannot be attacked BUT RATHER that it cannot be militarily prevented from acquiring nukes. My argument was basically that since an attack wouldn’t prevent a nuclear Iran, why would a rational country harm itself, the global economy and increase hostilities with a future nuclear armed country by carrying out a futile attack anyway?

    My previous post was an attempt to explain why I said the international community cannot militarily stop Iran from building nukes if it chooses to do so. You found that statement to be ridiculous but that happens to be the assessment of the defense and intelligence establishments of Western countries. In fact just observe their actions. They haven’t militarily attacked Iran. They instead rely on diplomatic economic pressure, industrial sabotage, assassinations, subterfuge and destabilization to try and achieve their goals. They voice numerous threats periodically and it looks like they have been successful in scaring Iranians like you.

    But you are right not to be fully reassured that this wouldn’t precipitate an US/Israeli attack. Again it is responsible to account for the worst possible outcomes when it comes to defense. And people of my view is just as right in not being reassured that a nuclear bomb wouldn’t someday drop on major Iranian cities, or Khuzestan or Baluchistan wouldn’t be forcibly separated from Iran; or Saudi Arabia and Pakistan wouldn’t someday attack Iran. We have to account for these factors also.

    That is exactly why your argument regarding the risk of aerial bombardment is a moot point. Even if nuclear pursuit invites an attack it is still preferable to Iran being unarmed and perpetually insecure.

    - > Regarding the second point: Iran does have the means to do what I advise.

    - I would argue Iran can acquire nuclear weapons if it makes the political decision to do so. Iran has a redundant industrial and technological infrastructure in place that gives them the ability to make a small arsenal of nukes.

    - I think the most devious argument Iranian peaceniks can make would be something like: “Look they have thousands of nuclear weapons. We can never match that. There is no way we can make a hundred nuclear bombs, ICBMs, and hydrogen bombs to credibly threaten our enemies. It is such an impossible task; let us not risk air strikes for something our country can’t do anyway.”

    They think they are being so clever. But this is a canard. For the medium term at least Iran doesn’t need a large arsenal of nuclear weapons. I have argued Iran should take a page out of North Korea’s book and simply take America’s allies hostage. This is a modest and achievable goal that will put Iran out of danger. Iran can pursue more ambitious plans later after they have secured themselves this way.

    Iran doesn’t need ICBMs or to threaten European cities directly. Iranian missiles already target Israeli cities and Gulf Arab countries. If Iran can place nuclear tipped warheads of say a yield of 10-20 kiloton on some of those missiles, it would be sufficient to ensure Iranian security. Iran can this way directly threaten Riyadh, Kuwait City, Doha, Abu Dhabi, and may be Tel Aviv and Haifa. A modest arsenal of say 10-12 warheads is sufficient for this task. If necessary those missiles can be redirected at other regional targets. This is a modest goal that is well with Iran’s capability to do and Iran already has everything in place to make this happen.

    - Also, I would reiterate my point that an outside military attack cannot stop Iran from doing this. The defense and intelligence establishments in the West tend to share this assessment. The West is basically trying to intimidate, sanction, bribe Iranians into sacrificing their national interests. My last post to you was an attempt to prove this point.

    - > You know that is why I said you cannot have it all. Iran wants to pursue certain policies that place it in direct conflict with many powerful international actors. But Iran doesn’t have a viable mean of defending herself if her enemies decide to attack her. Iran could perhaps protect herself by becoming a US protectorate but this obviously isn’t politically possible. The only other way to assure her safety is by being armed with nuclear weapons. A country doesn’t just become powerful without making some sacrifices and assuming some risks. The Pakistanis were willing to eat grass, thankfully Iran doesn’t have to. But Iran is already in a very precarious position; if some additional troubles can manage to bring safety to her citizens and her future generations, Iran should pursue it. Iranian government must insure the physical safety of Iranian citizens and of the country’s territorial integrity. This is not a matter of vanity but of national survival.

  385. fyi says:

    Richard Steven Hack says:

    November 27, 2012 at 5:04 pm

    Iranian will not be fighting a conventional war with anyone, least of all with Pakistan.

    Pakistan’s army has to go through 2 deserts to get to any large concentration of Iranian population.

    Any war betwee Iran and Pakistan will be a war of cities with airplanes and missiles.

    That is yet another reason that Iran must be armed with nuclear weapons.

    And given the DP of Iran, she will likely be able to make as many or perhaps even more weapons that Pakistan.

    Furthermore, my sense of it from public Internet sources is that Pakistan lacks certain essential components for the manufacture of more nuclear weapons; parts that she most likely acquired from EU previously but cannot any more.

  386. Smith says:

    kooshy says:
    November 27, 2012 at 4:57 pm

    Well, I am sorry for you. Like others here, this will be my last reply to you. People like you can only hurl abuse and get personal without being able to counter powerful concrete logical arguments with arguments. Green? What is that? I do not subscribe to no stupid green or no stupid any one else including the Rajavi cult. Your basiji, and your threats against me are useless. It only shows how low you have sunk, threatening other people with arrest, torture and death in order to silence them. Your veiled threats against me, that you are going to arrest me and torture and probably me, is enough to expose you. I do not have to fear you. What I have to fear though is an invasion of Iran and an Iran without any credible defense.

    The war mongers and neo-cons do not need a small time commentator on a small website to promote their war plans. They have all the TV’s and Radio’s in the world to do that. So your effort to discredit me and my arguments are pathetic. My concern is only for the innocent Iranians and the history of Iran. Soon, if Iran does not go nuclear you and the IRI will get the brunt of the huge conventional force waiting at your gate. It is inevitable. The process will self-complete since it can not now be stopped. Iran’s fate is sealed. The only way for it to survive is to be strong. The weakness only breeds the invitation of invasion. Now go and report to your superior Mullahs in order to arrest me and torture me. Good bye.

  387. fyi says:

    Smith says:

    November 27, 2012 at 5:59 pm

    You might be unaware that I have been, before your comments, the sole commentator that argued for the necessity of a nuclear-armed Iran.

    I think your comments about anti-missile batteries in Southern Persian Gulf are accurate.

    Also, your comments about crony statism of the Islamic Republic; which, thank God for US and EU, is being unravelled.

    I am confident that very many Iranian leaders have been aware of these and now have the excuse to go after these entrenched an corrupt interests.

    Mr. Khamenei will not drink poison, rest assured.

    Both in 2006 and in early Spring of 2012 he essentially told the Americans thatIran will go to war rather than surrender.

    I agree with you that Americans will wait for an opportune time to attack Iran, just as they waited for Iraq and for Libya.

    [They attacked and destroyed their unofficial allie in the Cold War, the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.

    As the saying goes in Persian: "The man who rapes his own mother, God only knows what he would do to others!"]

    And no, there will be no upcoming negogiations, that much is certain.

  388. Smith says:

    Obama’s New National Security Team Should Be Asked Serious Questions About U.S. Foreign Policy (But Probably Won’t Be):

    One of those questions should be: Should US continue its useless policies against Iran and make innocent civilian Iranians suffer more and more culminating in a war, or just change the strategy towards another policy: http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=Z4uzEDewPyE#t=1129s

  389. Smith says:

    Before coming here and trying to debunk me, fyi, Nasser etc, please watch the debate that posted in my previous video. Without that, you are hopeless on the issue.

  390. Smith says:

    Alot of people here, appears to be stuck in the old ways of thinking. They have not caught up to the new world and to the rise of new players. They are sort of blind to the aspirations of other people. Iranians dream and have serious security issues that need to be addressed. This can not be done by threatening Iran into submission. This can not be done by scaring Iranians. This can only be done by accepting Iranian nuclear weapons and working towards peace from there as this debate puts it in context: http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=Z4uzEDewPyE#t=1129s

  391. Richard Steven Hack says:

    From my post on November 27, 2012 at 1:05 pm

    “with less likelihood of subsequent civil war like Iran or Syria might experience.”

    s/b “like Iraq or Syria might experience.”

  392. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Fareed Zakari or Vali Nasr? Neither one of these guys has any clue about Iran’s strategic need for nuclear weapons. All they argue is that Iran having them would not be a bad enough thing for the world to require military intervention – which is quite true but irrelevant to the point of whether Iran actually needs them – or wants them.

    Nuclear weapons are useful only to countries which:

    1) Have enough of them to have a credible first strike capability (meaning enough warheads to seriously damage their opponent in a first strike);
    2) Have enough of them to have a credible second strike capability (meaning enough varied delivery systems that they can deliver a second strike after absorbing a first or retaliatory strike from their opponent);
    3) implies that the country has either:
    a) enough weapons that some will survive a first or retaliatory strike and/or
    b) approximately an equal – or more precisely a comparable – number of weapons as their primary opponent – which number is mostly derived from a).

    None of this applies to the US and Israel (and Pakistan as well) vis-a-vis Iran. It only applies to the US, Russia and China.

    Nor does it apply to North Korea which is approximately in the same position as Iran if Iran were to convert all its LEU into nuclear weapons. The difference is that North Korea has a far more powerful army than Iran as well as the at least lukewarm support of a nuclear superpower, China, which is a credible threat to the US.

    Iran with nukes might possibly be able to deter a conventional war with Turkey. But an Iran WITHOUT nukes could defeat Turkey for the same reasons it could defeat Iraq or even the US. It might not be able to deter a war but it could win one.

    In the case of Pakistan, the same would apply. Iran could deter a conventional war with Pakistan or even conceivably a nuclear war with Pakistan IF Iran had sufficient numbers of nukes as to make up for Pakistan’s superior numbers of nukes. But in the end it would come down to whether Iran could defeat Pakistan on the conventional battlefield. And Iran is unlikely to ever match Pakistan in numbers of deliverable nukes, let alone Israel or the US.

    Nukes are only useful for threatening mass civilian destruction as a deterrent to conventional war. They are nearly useless for anything else. A country’s survival actually depends on its ability to either win a conventional war or win a war with unconventional means. Iran has the latter ability and that’s all it needs to be reasonably secure in its own region, absent the threat from Israel or the US. Nothing, including nukes, can remove the threat from the US and Israel.

    With regard to the notion that Iran holds the Gulf region “hostage” like North Korea holds South Korea (and to some degree, Japan) “hostage”, that doesn’t strike me as being of major significance. While it is true that North Korea could essentially destroy Seoul, South Korea, a major trading partner of both China and the US, within 48-72 hours, I continue to believe that it is the size of the North Korean army and its (lukewarm) support by China that is the deciding factor against the US initiating a war against North Korea.

    Nothing similar applies to Iran. Anything Iran can destroy in a war in the Persian Gulf can be rebuilt. The question is: how much can Iran destroy before its ability to destroy targets outside its borders is degraded to the point where it can NOT destroy much of value outside its borders? If attacked by the US, Iran’s medium and long range missile batteries are obviously going to be degraded within a week or two – certainly enough that mass missile attacks will no longer be feasible. Even if Saudi oil refineries and distribution points are destroyed before then, that effect will not last forever.

    There is also the question of whether Iranian missiles CAN destroy ENOUGH of those facilities to render them inoperative for longer than some months. While the immediate and longer term economic effect of a reduction in oil supplies would accentuate the immediate oil price spike as a result of the war itself it is questionable whether that would be a sufficient deterrent to the war itself. This is especially true if the oil price spike results in windfall profits for the oil companies.

    There is also the question of whether Iran would expend its limited missile stocks against Gulf country oil facilities or against US military assets in the region. While it may be “punishing” to attack Gulf oil assets, military strategy would dictate that the bulk of the attacks be directed against actual threatening military assets of the opponent, especially since most of Iran’s missiles are relatively short-range and only useful against targets within a couple hundred miles of Iran.

    (Conventional) missile arsenals are like nukes in one respect: they’re only useful as a deterrent if you have enough of them to make both a credible first strike and a credible second strike. In my opinion, something on the order of a thousand missiles is the minimum needed for a deterrent capability. Iran has about 300 Shahab-3 long-range missiles capable of hitting Israel (800-1600km), and perhaps 500-600 medium-range missiles with ranges from 100-500km. But it has far fewer launchers – allegedly only six for its longest range missiles – thus making mass attacks less effective. And anything less than mass attacks tends to mitigate the effect of missile strikes, especially in the accuracy is poor.

    I don’t know of any case in military history where missile strikes were decisive in either shutting down critical military operations or destroying critical civilian infrastructure without the expenditure of hundreds of missiles. In most cases these were cruise missiles, as used in the attack on Iraq. In all of the conflicts so far, less than a few hundred missiles were expended by both sides (not counting the “flying pipes” in the Gaza wars, which aren’t serious.)

    So Can Iran hold the Gulf states “hostage” sufficiently to prevent the US from attacking Iran? I don’t see it. The US Fifth Fleet in Bahrain would survive an Iranian missile attack. Most US air bases in the region would survive, albeit flight operations might well be degraded (the US Air Force knows full well how to repair cratered flight lines and aircraft are bunkered against nuclear strikes.) Oil facilities and distribution in Saudi Arabia might be degraded, but it is not certain how much or for how long.

    Bottom line: While the “collateral damage” from an Iranian retaliation for a US attack would be considerably greater than that from Saddam’s Iraq, I don’t see any proof that it is a decisive factor in preventing such an attack. There was a lot of speculation that Saddam might do any number of things in the Iraq war – none of which happened and none of which prevented the war.

  393. kooshy says:

    RSH

    As far as I understand the Iranian government and Iranian people including the Iranian planers have no fear of a US nuclear or non-nuclear attack on Iran now or in coming future, if they did they would not have openly announce supplying military equipment and assistance to Hamas, IJ, or Hezbollah, in US all three of these organizations are considered terrorist organization, no one beside Iran ever dared to openly announce supplying military hardware to them if they had a fear of US/Israeli attack they would not have announced that.

    In past year or so, there is a new strategy developing within Greenies/ MKO members who have seen that they are incapable of regime change in Iran without convincing US for a military attack on Iran (much like the Israeli strategy), there conclusion is that the only way US will find a justification to attack Iran is if they can demonstrate that Iran has passed the red line of making an actual nuclear bomb 9 not standing to her NPT agreement), this is since for US planers an actual Iranian nuclear bomb does not mean Iran just wants to increase her deterrence, it rather means Iran is planning to increase her regional hegemony and perhaps to impose her will on smaller regional states and to reshape the region based on an Iranian hegemony.

    Smith

    A “Jordan Option” is what in closet greenies should want, with a hope of a US attack on Iran so they can get their Chalabi style regime change. A “Japan option” is what Iran has and needs without increasing unnecessary agitation, meaning if you are ever attacked you are capable of responding in due time for country as big as Iran. It’s not a good practice to twist around what I wrote I did not claim in case Pakistan goes Mad, India and US will come to Iran’s rescue I said they are in first line of fire by a mad fundamentalist Pakistani, before Iran ever will be, that alone would be a shield for Iran.

    If a mad fundamentalist ever take control of Pakistan, a nuclear US, a Nuclear India, or a nuclear Iran would not be a deterrent to a fundamentalist strike, since a mad fundamentalist is devoid of cost benefit calculations, much similar to a Green or MKO members who wishes for a US attack on Iran, for a wishful regime change, they wishfully think in that case they can easily walk in and take control of Iran. Last time I was in Iran was this last March and I plan to go back this coming March but I bet you wouldn’t consider going back without getting your regime change, for that, wish yourself a good luck with a lot of repetitive long posts, like RSH play the “blogging arcade strategy game” as much as you like, at the end of the day you like all of us are entitled to your wishes and opinions.

  394. James Canning says:

    R S Hack,

    Netanhyahu and Aipac are trying to compel Obama to say that Iranian enrichment of “X” amount of 20% U will trigger a US attack. 180kg? 250?

    Yet Smith thinks Obama would accept Iranian nukes.

  395. James Canning says:

    Concerned,

    Doesn’t M. Ali say that Iran will be attacked if it tries to build nukes?

  396. fyi says:

    All:

    Mr. Smith has sketched out plausible reasons for Iran as Nuclear Power.

    I believe that his views deserve to be seriously considered.

    And I also believe that a 10-kiloton attack against Tehran (or Isphahan or Mashahd, or Shiraz, or Tabriz) are in the realm of possibility although not probable.

    In regards to war, I gave my estimates for the dead Iranian in a prolonged US war against Iran sometime ago.

    At that time, my estimate was 60,000 dead over a 4 year period – comparing it with the annual number of dead from traffic/road accidents in Iran- 18,000 souls.

    Let us double that estimate to 120,000 dead.

    That number still is smaller than a single 10-kiloton attack against any major Iranian city will cause.

    In my opinion, only a fool will entrust the defense of Iran to anything except Iran’s own capabilities.

    Yes, God could help but He expects – as a matter of course – for one to help oneself.

  397. Smith says:

    M. Ali says:
    November 27, 2012 at 8:03 am

    Refer to my previous post.

    The stakes are high. The humiliation of an attack on Iran even higher even if that be a sustained air bombardment with massive damage to Iran’s economy and infrastructure.

    1- Iran needs nuclear weapons to prevent it being attacked (NO brainer)

    The rest is semantics you are playing with. There is a cost to be paid by attacking another nation, as you yourself pointed out. The current cost of attacking Iran is high and US can not pay it right now, because of multitude of reasons, from being bogged down in Afghanistan to its economic situation to oil prices. Tomorrow these may change and US might be ready to pay the price for a war with Iran. US was not ready to pay the war price for a full invasion of Iraq in 1990. But it was ready to pay it in 2003. With Iran under sanctions, things might go in direction of Iraq someday specially if Khamenei drinks two gallons of poison and stops Iran’s nuclear program in upcoming talks. Why two gallon? Because his situation is different from Khomeini.

    During the war with Iraq, Saddam was getting more and more powerful due to western support for him something Khomeini had not calculate for so, he drank a gallon of it and died. Khamenei on the other hand had been warned about this. In 2003, Iran’s parliament specifically and literally used the term “gallon of poison” and wrote to Khamenei that if the situation is to become the same, it is better to drink the gallon now and stop the nuclear program without much harm. Khamenei refused to drink it. So it today, Khamenei capitulates, it will be two fold. One gallon of poison gifted from Washington and another from the Majles that they let at his home in 2003.

    On the other hand, with nuclear Iran, the costs will go higher. So even if tomorrow, US or another power comes to conclusion that conventionally it is profitable to go to war with Iran and destroy it, they might think again since Iran has nuclear weapons. In fact, it is an opportunity for Iran to develop nukes now when US and EU are having so much problems that can not pay for a war with Iran now. Tomorrow might be late.

    Do not get fooled by the “benevolence” of American military or basiji re-assurances. The Basijis who try to play tough without having modern air defense, air force, navy, army etc etc are like Baghdad Bob, who was screaming that God will protect Iraq and US can not take over Baghdad air port because the brave Iraqi fedayeen (Iraqi basijis) will defeat Americans by their bare hands. Alas, we saw to the contrary. Iraqi women were raped and the country descended into chaos. The US wants Iran to remain weak, disarmed and only having old F-5 planes, rusty tanks and small boats armed with machine guns as navy. They want it this way, so that if some day they decide to attack Iran, it is going to be easy and cost effective for them. A nuclear armed Iran will spoil those dreams as the cost of war with a nuclear armed Iran will go up.

    By the way, did you get the news that US is trying to arm all Iran’s neighbors with anti-missile systems so that the cost of war with a non-nuclear armed Iran can be managed. In a few years when all these systems are in place, and with a basiji Iran without nuclear weapons, we will see humiliating scenes of an invaded and pillaged Iran on our TV screens. Even the mighty Russia, takes the anti-missile systems seriously despite technically having more nuclear weapons than US, France, UK, China, India, Pakistan and North Korea combined. I guess it is time for Iran to be worried about its current deterrence strategy in a few years. And by the noise the Iranian generals make every time, a country like UAE and Turkey buys such systems, you can tell, they are worried that their only military strategy might fail in near future.

    It brings us to hard truth:

    Iran has a credible defense right now by having taken hostage the oil producers. This threat will erode substantially with anti-missile defense systems which are being upgraded to very high efficacy. 5 years ago, in a smiliar war with Hamas, Israel would have given much higher if it were not for Iron Dome. Iran will continue to lose its defense deterrence over coming years fast.

    With this combine the fact that US might recover economically. The price of oil may even stabilize or even go lower as Arabs will try to invest more in their production facilities in order to bankrupt Iran and even the Iranian ally, Iraq increasing its production to rebuild the country. And then US pulls out of Afghanistan in 2014. All stars will become aligned to attack Iran with basijis running to Dubai and watching Iran burn on Al-Jazeera and listening to embedded reporters of Fox News moving into Iran in M1A2 tanks supported by F-22 top cover and A-10 low cover. Alas, things would have been different if Iran had nuclear weapons and some good technocrats for planning instead of basijis.

    Iran has not yet been attacked because, this strategy has worked and US has not been interested to pay the price for it. Tomorrow the price of an Iran invasion might come down and US might become interested to invade Iran or make another Saddam and use it to go to war with Iran. Tables will turn in 2014. Iran does not have much time.

  398. Goli says:

    This is just a reminder that if you have not yet contributed to Garrett Porter’s book project Manufactured Crisis: A History of the Iranian Nuclear Scare, and are able and willing to do so, please go to the KICKSTARTER website to contribute. The end date for the fundraiser is rapidly approaching and it would be a loss for the cause of peace if this effort does not raise the required funds to enable the book’s publication.

  399. Richard Steven Hack says:

    NATO Missile Deployment Means “No-Fly Zone” For Syria
    http://www.globalresearch.ca/nato-missile-deployment-means-no-fly-zone-for-syria/5312893hawaii five-o

  400. Richard Steven Hack says:

    France gives $1.5mn to Syria insurgents
    :http://www.presstv.ir/detail/2012/11/26/274705/france-gives-15mn-to-syria-insurgents/

    Russia lashes out at France over supporting insurgents in Syria
    :http://www.presstv.ir/detail/2012/11/26/274637/russia-censures-france-over-syria/

  401. Smith says:

    We need more Logos and less Pathos and Ethos.

    Some very brave people stood up to Saddam in 1980′s. Kids who even did not have proper military boots. Commanders who used to go to the front fighting for Iran, wearing sneakers since the country could no longer afford to buy them proper boots. Those were hard days: http://www.mashreghnews.ir/files/fa/news/1390/8/19/108484_737.jpg

    But some now are riding on those blood and flesh making huge money for themselves. These modern day basijis who hurl sexual abuses at the people and destroy local industries so that their cousin can continue importing from China and subsidizing his imports by Iranian oil, are not the same as those guys who died in that war. Those guys never expected to be paid for it. Do not get fooled by this gimmickry. Those who fought, they did so that justice can prevail. They did not do it so that some people today can import Lamborghini and pose off to girls. They did not do it for import mafia:
    http://tehrooz.com/1391/3/4/TehranEmrooz/901/Page/7/TehranEmrooz_901_7.pdf

    http://chemical-victims.blogfa.com/post-297.aspx

    http://www.tabnak.ir/fa/news/175204/%D8%A7%D9%8A%D9%86-%D8%AC%D8%A7%D9%86%D8%A8%D8%A7%D8%B2-%D8%A7%D8%B2-15-%D8%B3%D8%A7%D9%84-%D9%BE%D9%8A%D8%B4-%D8%B7%D8%B9%D9%85-%D8%BA%D8%B0%D8%A7-%D8%B1%D8%A7-%D9%86%DA%86%D8%B4%D9%8A%D8%AF%D9%87

    You will not find any of these guys wearing imported Italian clothes and roaming in Mercedez Benz and Toyota Prado and then come here and brag about it. Do not get confused. Stay focused.

    If you appoint a fifth grader to run the country, and the intelligence chief officer come and report to this 11 year old fifth grader saying: “Your highness, the sanctions are coming. They are going to shut down medicines for us. They did that to Iraq in 1990′s. They are capable of doing that. People are going die. We have diabetics, heart patients, pediatric diseases and cancer patients. Today, all the medicines are either directly imported or the active ingredients are imported exclusively by cousins of basijis and then repackaged in IRGC owned factories with huge profits for all those involved. Be we believe when sanctions come people will suffer since this arrangement will come to an end.”

    The fifth grader has enough enough intelligence to order for this arrangement to come to an end immediately and use the oil money for importing Benz, Ferrari and Italian clothes to instead establish a pharmaceutical industry capable of manufacturing at least the essential drugs so that the country is not dependent on import of its essentials whether medicine, food or grave stones and machines.

    So the fifth grader kid will issue this order: “Tomorrow round up all the senior professors of all medical universities and tell them to make a list of all the essential drugs for our beloved country Iran. Buy the technology for manufacturing them even if necessary from the black market. If for some it is not possible to buy the tech, then steal the technology. And if still not possible to seal then contract it to government, university and private researchers to develop the technology to make all these medicines.”

    This scenario is possible if only the planner has enough intelligence as that of a fifth grader 11 year old girl and if he/she is really committed to Iran and Iranians instead of his/her investments in Dubai. As you can see, this did not happen in Iran. So we can conclude only two things. Either the planners did not have the intelligence of a fifth grader. Or that they were busy making money by imports so much so that the deep corruption and dirty deals prevented them from seeing Iran’s strategic problems. These kind of people should not be the ones, who decide the future of Iran.

    Basij and IRGC should be barred from any economic and financial activity. Completely. They should only be seen as people who are ready to sacrifice their life without expecting anything in return. Currently they are promising Iranians of their “intention” to sacrifice themselves in a future war in which Iran is going to be disarmed while its opponents are going to be nuclear armed. For this promise, they want to be allowed exclusive licenses to import everything from medicine to banana making huge amounts of money and then investing it outside of Iran, in Dubai and Qatar. I do not think this is a credible defense doctrine. Neither I believe it will have any deterrence value when a real war starts.

    While reading through a Chinese newspaper an old Chinese trying in vain to teach me the Mandarin characters, he read me a story about Iranian nuclear program in that newspaper. It was basically the same usual stuff, IAEA and the rest. Then he turned to me and told me, why Iranian leader can not do their stuff silently without making so much noise. I did not have an answer. Really.

    If you are making so much noise and creating so many enemies as you have, then you should also have a credible military deterrence in place. Not just talks. Not just words. 80 million Iranian lives and another 80 million Shia lives outside of Iran depend on Iran’s survival. Gambling with so many people’s lives is not a wise decision. Iran is in need of a fool proof military deterrence or it will be toast eventually. For many Iranians dying will not be easy but getting killed by a foreign invading force armed to the teeth while Iran being essentially disarmed (except a few missiles, F-5 and BM-12 firing cheap small yachts). It is not a joke. Just like it was not when Khomeinie drank the gallon of poison. The entire Shia world depends on Iran. The million dollar question: Is Iran prepared when push comes to shove as Basijis here claim?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GwhZqcf2wtg

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g-6HgrGNO6I&feature=fvwrel

  402. Richard Steven Hack says:

    In short, Turkey is lying… Which by definition means NATO and the US are lying…

    Turkey: Patriot Missiles Won’t Be Used for Syria No-Fly Zone
    http://news.antiwar.com/2012/11/26/turkey-patriot-missiles-wont-be-used-for-syria-no-fly-zone/

  403. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Nice line…

    Brzezinski: US Should Not Follow Israel on Iran Like a “Stupid Mule”
    http://www.payvand.com/news/12/nov/1231.html

  404. James Canning says:

    M. Ali,

    Sensible comments you make to Smith. One might add that Obama will (or would) be stretched to the limit to accept Iranian enrichment to 5%, so that a P5+1 deal can be made with Iran. There is no chance Obama would accept enrichment to 20%. Yet Smith apparently thinks Obama would accept Iranian nukes. ZERO chance.

  405. James Canning says:

    Kathleen,

    Yes, the American news media do not cover the conspiracy to set up war with Iran, and the role of the US Navy analyst in blocking that scheme (by Dick Cheney and neocons).

  406. James Canning says:

    kooshy,

    I agree with you that Iran benefits from close monitoring of Pakistani nukes by the US.

    The Cold War started soon after the end of the Second World War, and years before the Soviet Union exploded its first nuke.

  407. James Canning says:

    Nasser,

    I take it you concede that if Iran tries to build nukes, it would have its navy sunk and its airorce destroyed. This would make Iran “stronger”, in your view?

  408. James Canning says:

    If the US is pursuing “dominance” in the Middle East, this course of action is compromised by the foolish encouragement, by the US Congress, of Israel’s economic blockade of Gaza and relentless colonisation programme in the West Bank.

  409. Richard Steven Hack says:

    I’m inclined to believe them.

    Bank Hackers Deny They’re Agents of Iran
    http://www.wired.com/dangerroom/2012/11/bank-hackers-deny-theyre-agents-of-iran/

  410. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Iran set to unveil new missile-launching warship
    http://rt.com/news/iran-new-missile-warship-650/

    Plus new subs.

  411. Smith says:

    Here is one of the few debates ever conducted about a rational and sane Iran possessing nuclear weapons as part of a global deterrence network. The result of the Munk debate was a victory for my argument that a nuclear armed Iran is viable and is safe, though I do not like Fareed Zakari or Vali Nasr much: http://www.policymic.com/articles/19626/war-with-iran-neocons-ramp-up-their-iran-war-talk-in-munk-debate

  412. Richard Steven Hack says:

    More propaganda from CNBC…

    Iran in Position to Threaten Oil lanes
    http://www.cnbc.com/id/49979832

  413. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Notice how they’re trying to move the “red line” now to the point where Iran has enough 20% LEU to “make a bomb” rather than actually “making a bomb”…further ignoring the fact that one bomb is utterly irrelevant since it would have to be tested, thereby requiring at least TWICE that much LEU to get another one…further ignoring how long it would take and how obvious it would be if Iran were to enrich 20% further.

    The article leaves all the contraindications far down in the piece.

    By ignoring all these facts, the reader is left with the impression that ANY increase in 20% LEU is justification for a military attack.

    This is quite deliberate.

    http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/11/27/us-nuclear-iran-stockpile-idUSBRE8AQ0Y520121127

  414. Smith says:

    Ataune says:
    November 26, 2012 at 2:00 pm

    I love Iran, Iranians and even more all the humans. I believe in peace and tranquility. But I also believe that the peace should not be at the cost of an Iranian invasion and mass killing of Iranians. I also believe whatever differences Iranians have between themselves should not prevent them from building a credible nuclear deterrence against foreign invasion. I will come back to answer you about the reforms in Iran, later. By the way, I do not want to see, the demise of IRI, I do not support reformists and I condemned the green movement right after the election which I believe was fair and square. But I think for myself, do not get my arguments from brain washing material out of western media or Iranian state propaganda.

    Though you might find my arguments radical, new and even “refreshing” since they are mine and they are new. I do not expect you to subscribe to them. And I respect your decision for that. I unlike others will not take you to AbuGharib and connect your anatomical parts to 33000 volts of alternating current as the foreign invading force did to Iraqi children nor I will take you to Evin and beat the soles of your feet with copper cable so much that the metatarsal bones stick out as was done to the wife of Emami. I develop my own ideas as I have been doing since I was a child. That is my curse.

  415. Richard Steven Hack says:

    AP Exclusive: Diagram suggests Iran working on nuclear bomb much more powerful than Hiroshima
    http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/ap-exclusive-diagram-suggests-iran-working-on-nuclear-bomb-much-more-powerful-than-hiroshima/2012/11/27/5a5110e8-38ad-11e2-9258-ac7c78d5c680_story.html

    Is this pathetic or what?

    “The diagram was leaked by officials from a country critical of Iran’s atomic program to bolster their arguments that Iran’s nuclear program must be halted before it produces a weapon. The officials provided the diagram only on condition that they and their country not be named.”

    Now we have “The Country Which Must Not Be Named”, i.e., cough Israel cough…

    They’re not even trying to conceal their hoaxes now!

  416. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Kooshy, et al: The people who think Iran can just build some nukes in a tunnel somewhere during a hot war are delusional. They are suffering from a similar sort of “cognitive dissonance” that afflicts those who think the US can never attack Iran, but sort of in reverse. Instead of minimizing US capability they magnify Iran’s capability.

    This is because they can’t believe their country’s relative position in the world because it would harm their self-image because they are too tied to their country. This isn’t surprising – most people’s self-image is tied to their family, their social group, and their country. One has to put all that stuff aside before one can judge matters dispassionately.

    Some people here sound like Baghdad Bob or the sort of propagandists from North Korea that no one takes seriously.

    Fortunately they aren’t running Iran. Even Ahmadinejad has clearly stated that Iran can never and will never attempt to compete with the US nuclear arsenal and doesn’t need to.

    Iran is a large, relatively modern country which cannot be occupied or controlled by the US. It can be seriously damaged but not destroyed. It is not a poor benighted nation like Afghanistan, nor is it a fractured nation like Iraq. It can rely on its ability to defeat any invader due to the nationalism of its population. In any war with the US, Iran will – eventually – defeat the US in that US forces will be forced to withdraw and Iran will be able to rebuild – with less likelihood of subsequent civil war like Iran or Syria might experience.

    So Iran does not need nuclear weapons. It is not China or Russia, seeking to become a superpower to balance the US. It needs only regional influence which can only be harmed by being a nuclear weapons state.

    If there was no superpower backing Israel, it might make sense for Iran to have nuclear weapons to balance Israel’s situation, as long as Iran had begun such development at the same time as Israel so that it could have a comparable arsenal and delivery capability. At this point, it makes no sense for Iran to even try to match Israel’s nuclear capability, and especially so because Israel has the support of a superpower. To some degree, the same applies to Pakistan. No one else in the region besides these two powers is even remotely a nuclear threat to Iran and Pakistan would be much more concerned about India and the US should jihadists seize power there.

    The people cited by fyi who claim Iran should have nukes are people who haven’t thought through the geopolitical and strategic realities – people who don’t know how limited nukes are as a weapon. One of these days, I suspect Israel will find out how limited its nuclear arsenal is. The US has already found out in Vietnam, Iraq and Afghanistan – and it will find out in Iran next.

    A huge conventional army – which has mobility – is what enables countries to be geopolitically important and enables them to attack smaller countries. But huge conventional armies are no longer successful at occupying and controlling smaller countries (not to mention being a huge economic sinkhole.) The evolution of Fourth Generation War has made that approach obsolete. But it will be a couple decades more before the superpowers realize that. Even now, the rise of drones, robots, and Special Forces are demonstrating how the face of war has changed. Eventually all the superpowers will suffer significant defeat not just on the battlefield but on their home territories and be fractured into smaller entities. And this will make the world safer. at least in terms of mass casualty war.

  417. Smith says:

    Photi says:
    November 26, 2012 at 2:08 pm

    No my POV is not the same as anyone else in mainstream public opinion. My POV is this:

    “Iranians are sane and respectful people with very real strategic and long standing security concerns that can only be protected by nuclear weapons. Futhermore, Iranians being part of homo sapiens sapiens species have the same rights and responsibilities as other members of this biological species on the only planet habitable to this species. So they can BE TRUSTED with having nuclear weapons as others have them.”

    Your POV, on the other hand is the same as war mongers and their slaves:

    1) Iranians are insane and should not have nuclear weapons. Or

    2) Iranians will be attacked if they ever develop nuclear weapons. Or

    3) Iranians will be attacked at some point, regardless since that is war mongers have been essentially doing, otherwise they would not be balled war mongers. Or

    4) All of the above.

    My argument is radically different. It says, just like Sunnis have their bomb in Pakistan, Hindus have theirs in India, Christians have it in US, Russia, UK, France and Jews in Israel, why not Shia? The Iranians have earned it. They have developed the technology and they really need it for their security which is the most threatened in the world right now, and furthermore, the Iranians are as sane as French. At least Iranians used not slaughter people in their colonies. You on the other hand is vouching for the war mongers. You are promoting to disarm Iranians and then attack them. Because that is what has been going on for a while now in the world.

  418. fyi says:

    kooshy says:

    November 26, 2012 at 9:59 pm

    Men are in the state of Fall and it is clear that once a group/collection of men reach a certain level of power, it seeks to impose its will on others.

    That is necessary corollary of the State of Fall; men seek to dominate other men to caress their fragile and puny finite egos – it is one of the many responses to the fact of Death (but by Fallen Men).

    That is another reason that “Command” positions within human societies are so coveted; where men and women can exercise their Love-Hate relationship with others of their kind.

    Americans are not any different.

    And since the Americans, and the English before them, have been a representative republic it puts to rest the idea that conquest and power politics are artifacts of ancient tyrannical states – such as ancient Assyria.

    That is, the idea that Democracy precludes Imperialism is nonsense.

    On the contrary, Democracy, with almost religious belief in the abilities of Mankind to govern itself, is most likely system of government to give rise to unbridled scope to the indulgence in fantasies that emanate from the Fallen Nature of Man.

    Every single European state participating in World War I was a representative democracy – to varying degrees.

    And keep in mind that the “Democratic” English initiated the Opium War against “Tyrannical” China.

    In regards to the use of atomic weapons against Japan:

    US planners estimated 100,000 dead and wounded in the first 3 amphibious landing waves of the main Japanese islands.

    They elected to use nuclear weapons to crush Japan’s will to resist.

    [Later the late Harry Truman tried to intimidate the Russians by bringing the topic of nuclear weapons in his conversations with the late Joseph Stalin. Stalin was not intimidated; the late Dr. Kurchatov was already working on Soviet atom bombs in Siberia.]

    The Philippines people, the Chinese, and the Koreans all regret that US did not drop more nuclear weapons on Japan.

    Americans will change only when the costs of their power projections harms them in undeniable ways.

  419. Smith says:

    M.Ali says:
    November 26, 2012 at 2:52 pm

    I do not consider myself an authority. I like good logical debates. Not hurling abuse at someone else’ parents. Not threatening anyone and certainly not hauling someone to prison and torture him/her to death just because he/she criticized you. That is not me. That is your typical basiji who has gone into import business, of bringing in Italian clothes and bags, Toyota Prado and all the essential medicines. With authority comes certain power. Power Corrupts. Absolute power corrupt absolutely. As you can see right now in Iran.

    Regarding your questions:

    I did not say, whether Iran was on right or wrong path with regard to nuclear issue. What I said, is that Iran should not give up its nuclear program in upcoming talks. These are two different things. I have not enough information and certainly not enough information is available to know if Iran is on the right path or not. And again I did not say as you accuse me of to dash for a nuclear weapon. Not at all. What I have been saying, is that Iran will never will secure without nuclear weapons and sooner or later will be attacked. That is for sure. Let’s not kid ourselves here and do not get fooled by the basiji import mafia.

    Iran needs a credible deterrence. That deterrence can only be provided economically for a country like Iran with nuclear tipped ICBM’s since building a huge and sophisticated air force, navy and army for Iran needs alot of money that is not there right now. What I have put forward, is for Iranians to think seriously about a nuclear deterrence the only deterrence in human history that has actually worked and is working as we speak. Iran can not afford to go to war for another eight years and sustain economic losses for decades. There is no need to dash towards a nuclear weapons. Policy options are there that allow Iran to go towards that end peacefully and safely. Some of those policies have been discussed in previous threads, and I do not want to waste my time re-explaining that to you, as you can go back and read them.

    The reason Iran will not be attacked, is because right now, the prices of oil are high, western economic situation is not good, the global economic situation is dire, and US is bogged down in Afghanistan, and has pulled out of Iraq wounded plus there is Obama in white house. Short of a war started by Iranian basijis, right now there will be no war started by west, if Iran quietly transitions itself towards nuclear weapons. US will only attack Iran when, it is out of Afghanistan, its military has rested for a while, the economic situation is better and most importantly, an Iran that is without nuclear weapons. Whether US will do that directly or using a chemical, atomic or conventional regional Saddam is to be seen. But without nukes, Iran is a sitting duck.

    At the end, Iran has put too many of its eggs in NPT basket. That is very damaging. No Iranian faction is there to promote an Iranian nuclear deterrence option and in effect, putting pressure back on the west to make NPT work. No Iranians are promoting the idea that a nuclear Iran will actually be good for the region and the stability.

    Iran is not a crazy nation that is being promoted by western media dehumanizing Iranians and brain washing people to believing that demonized Iranian nation can not be trusted to have nuclear weapons. Such racism should be countered fundementally. If 9 countries can have nuclear weapons and a couple of dozens having the capability option, why not Iran? Why so much racism? These are the points that only intelligent Iranians will be able to raise and defend. The bajisis who have formed the biggest import mafia system in the world, can not do that. It is beyond their mental capability. All they can do is threaten Iranians and trying to keep them in the box while they go about investing hundreds of billions of dollars in Dubai.

  420. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Yeah, this oughta help with negotiations…

    Israeli opponents of Iran strike sidelined in vote
    :http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/11/27/us-israel-netanyahu-advisers-idUSBRE8AQ0MD20121127

    The Likud presents: The craziest, most radical list ever expected to win elections
    :http://972mag.com/the-likud-presents-the-craziest-most-radical-list-ever-expected-to-win-elections/60933/

  421. Smith says:

    Nasser says:
    November 27, 2012 at 1:13 am

    Funny that these guys think that they can go to war with their two tailed F-5 copy and actually win against even Saudi Arabia. In late 1980′s Saudi Arabia that was not technically at war with Iran, used to deploy its E-3 Sentry and highly electronically optimized (against Iranian aircrafts) F-15SA to hunt Iranian air force planes on one occasion shooting down two Iranian F-4 very easily. By the way, those E-3′s had been built for and paid by Iran.

    These guys think that it is a joke to go to war. History is funny. Some of the people in the beginning of the revolution, were saying that Iran should sell its F-4 and F-14 fighters to other countries and scrap its tank battalions and throw away its military hardware. I am not joking. It is true. It was being promoted in open and written about in newspapers. Their reasons were not very different than today’s. I outline some of them that were being written in newspapers those days here:

    1) Iran is not at war and since Iran does not want any war with anyone, so it does not need such stuff as F-14′s and tanks. Iran is a peaceful country and these military machines will only destabilize peace and will scare away Iran’s neighbors and friends.

    2) Iran should spend the money from selling those military hardware to build houses for the people who do not own houses. The steel from melting the tanks can help in house building process.

    3) Even if Iran gets attacked, Iran will NOT need these stuff as Iran will fight the enemy with “faith” and “determination”. Iranian soldier does not need air cover, air defense, electronic countermeasures, armor etc etc.

    4) God will protect Iran. This is their favorite line. But the truth is, God never promised such a thing even to his prophet during wars. Even the prophet never won all the wars. You see, God himself says, be prepared. Work hard. And there is no guarantee that God has extended to IRI or the Ayatollahs or even Iran.

    But then something strange happened. Iraq along with the rest of the world minus Iran, Syria and North Korea attacked Iran. The same military hard ware helped Iran to fend off the attack. When those military hard war run out, when F-14′s could no longer fly due to parts shortages when AIM-54 Phoenix stocks reached from 280 to less than a dozen, when Iranian navy could no longer protect the territorial waters of Iran allowing American navy ships to come in at will and shoot down civilian airliner, then Khomeini drank the gallon of poison. I hope it is not going to be the same again. And I hope the Iranian planners do have planned for the coming war, which will come one way or another. It is inevitable.

    During Iranian history, the only thing that has never stopped is foreign attacks on Iran since 7000 years ago. Attacks after attacks. And whenever the ruling elites had become fat and were involved in making huge money for themselves and their friends and when they had become corrupt and were not maintaining a powerful deterrence, it was in those historical instances that Iran got invaded and paid the ultimate price.

  422. Smith says:

    kooshy says:
    November 27, 2012 at 1:32 am

    You don’t know what you are talking about. “Second strike capability”, “Jordan Option”, Are you kidding? What these two have in common?

    The first one means, a country has so many nuclear weapons atleast in hundreds that keeps some of them in nuclear submarine and deep underground silos so that if a surprise attack by an enemy destroys most of its nuclear weapons, the ones stored on nuclear submarines and underground silos will survive to give the country a “second strike capability” to hit back. Much like the Russian “Dead Hand System”.

    Jordan Option refers to a western option, to solve Palestinian issue by renaming Jordan to Palestine and all Palestinians in west bank and gaza can then move there and have a country. PLO like that. Hamas/Hizbullah/Iran do not.

    India and US will never protect Iran. Just like they did not against Saddam. India used to train the Iraqi pilots for bombing Iran. At least read some history before coming here and opining on things you do not know. A war game done by both Pakistan and India about a nuclear war with each other, concluded that India will technically win such a war because of its larger population.

    The causalities will be high in hundreds of millions. But at the end, India will have still a sizable population left while most of Pakistanis will be dead. So Pakistan/Saudis will not go to war with India. But Iran is a cake. In a few decades Pakistan will have a population of 365 million with no energy resources. Where do you think the wahabis then will go to get those resources? India? No, dear, they will march into unarmed, Iran defending itself against the relatively sophisticated Pakistan army with two squadrons of 1950′s era F-5 fighters. By the way, wahabis have no enmity with Israel, US or India. Their enmity is with Shia. And it is deep. They refer to Qadisiyyah again and again in every mosque hailing its importance as well as the dire need for it to happen again.

    The Arab street and the Pakistani street who are by majority not wahabi, actually support Iran to have nuclear weapons. All credible polls show that. They know what will happen to Iran if Iranians did not have nuclear weapons. Alas, some Iranians think otherwise.

    The basijis who fought in Iran Iraq war, died then. Today’s basiji is invloved in corruption and making huge amounts of money by importing red ferrari, yellow lamborghini and metallic grey porche. I guess you have not been to Iran, lately. Those guys who used to go to the front in 1980′s did not even have motorcycles. Do you think a basiji today who hurls abuse to some one’s mother and father is going to the front? Do you think he will leave his Porche behind? Do you think today’s wars or a war with US B-2 bombers need basijis to be won? What about Pakistan air force JF-17 and F-16′s? Do you think the basiji today can fight against them with his yellow lamborghini? I highly doubt that.

  423. A concerned world citizen says:

    M.Ali says:

    I’m sorry but I do not share in your assertion that Iran will be attacked by the US if she gets the bomb..I’d argue the complete opposite.

    The entire US strategy vis-a-vis Iran’s been preventing Iran from obtaining the bomb and they’ve used every available means to achieve that – which has failed(the centrifuges keep spinning).

    If you’re been paying attention over the past years, many US officials have stated that once Iran gets the bomb, there’s nothing much they can do..The cat will finally be out of the bag.

    The US/West couldn’t do a damn thing when Pakistan, India, China, North Korea etc went nuclear..What make you think they can stop Iran if she ever decides to go for the bomb? You see, the thing with nukes is that, it puts a country in the immunity zone. Look at Pakistan today..The US simply cannot declare open war on the country despite the fact that Pakistan won’t last a day in an open conflict with the US.Their nukes make them “untouchable”.

    The question as to whether Iran will go for the bomb is something none of us here will ever know..But what is clear, however, is that Iran has the means/capacity to assemble one should the need arise..That alone is enough deterrent to any idiot thinking of attacking.

    There’ll be a lot of huffing and puffing but that’ll be pretty much it..I mean, what will be their excuse for attacking Iran?? That Iran’s got one bomb against their several thousands of nukes?

    Truth is, anything country that decides to get the bomb will ultimately get it. The US is not into the business of launching grand wars anymore, like they did in Iraq, whose very outcome is highly unpredictable.

    There’ll be no attack on Iran..That time’s passed 30+ years ago when Iran was at her weakest. The US’s now settling for “stability” in the region. Their economy won’t can’t bare a war with Iran, whose outcome will be the destruction of both parties.

  424. Bussed-in Basiji says:

    kooshy,
    Yeah, it look likes they had appointed him at first and then somebody at the US embassy in Bahrain told them what a bad idea this is…

    Also, “Muslim salami fundamentalist”- brilliant :-)

    Yes, some of these arazel and obash were the best human beings I have ever known…

  425. M. Ali says:

    Nasser,

    I don’t think Iran is untouchable. I don’t think Iran is untouchable now or in the future. To be honest, I don’t think ANY country is untouchable. Everything in life always comes down to a cost/profit analysis. If the cost of a war with Iran is less than the profit with war with Iran, it will happen.

    I argue, with the current path and AT the moment, cost of war with Iran is higher than its profit, so Iran won’t be attacked. But Iran with going the path of nuclear weapons will probably cause Iran to be attacked.

    What I don’t understand with you, fyi, or Smith’s argument is this,

    1. Iran needs nuclear weapons to prevent it being attacked
    2. No one dares (or can’t) attack Iran if it wants to get nuclear weapons

    However, this two statements don’t make logical sense. If Iran needs nukes to defend itself from attacks, then it CAN be attacked, making the second point invalid. If the second point is valid (it can’t be attacked if it goes the nuke weapons route), then the first point becomes invalid.

    I’m not dismissing your argument, and I’m sorry for leaning on the ridiculing part (its the side effect of online arguments, we get snarky and rude so easily), but I do think there is a logical fallacy in the arguments put forward.

    I’m not saying Iran should never have nuclear weapons. To me, Iran should have nuclear weapons, biochemical weapons, and secret, advanced freaky, scary weapons that do crazy shit, all locked away in a safe as insurance. However, all I’m saying is that the path to that route is not now. If the world is sure we are on that route, they WILL attack us and no one will come to our defense.

    “Either a prolonged occupation of the entire country – a military impossibility; or nuclear bombardment – a political impossibility. ”

    What the world CAN do is prolonged bombarment. Enough bombs falling on Tehran and with enough money pouring in the pockets of wheoevr Iranian is willing to sell state secrets, and the program can be stopped, or if not stopped, to destroy Iran’s economic structure so much, that tehy won’t have any regional influence anymore, meaning, it won’t matter then if Iran has nukes, when it has zero influence.

    “Also add to this calculus Iran’s already existing ability to target the oil/gas infrastructure in the Persian Gulf and the cost of an attack goes up even further. ”

    Again, ths brings me back to my first point. If Iran’s ability to target oil/gas infrastructure is enough to prevent attacks, then why do you need nukes anyway? I’m sure you will agree that the Iranian threat of it going after these infrustracture is not enough insurance for its security, and I will 100% agree, therefore, I’m not sure why that will be ineffective defense in the future you and smith envision, but it is an effective defense now?

    “and yet you refuse to spend more than 2% of your GDP on defense.”

    I have no problem with Iran spending more money on GDP, and I like Smith’s suggestion in previous threads. Buy technology, pay to be thought out to make it, and then make it internally. I don’t want Iran to be Saudi Arabia and spend shit loads of money on ready made planes. But I DO want Iran to be technologically advance in the field of defense. Not only spending money in technical expertise in weapons will help Iranian’s defense, but it will also provide jobs for Iranians, specially the scientists. It will also help move the technological advances in non-military fields, plus finally, it will give us export business. So I’m find with all of this. Just that going after nukes at this moment in time is dangerous.

    “You want to poke America in the eye, threaten a nuclear armed Israel, and get in a fight with the Wahabis”

    I wouldn’t even mind Iran being a bit more diplomatic here.

    Anyway, basically, my argument is against this fallacy (to repeat):

    If Iran is in danger of being attacked in the future, then how can it safetly go after nukes?
    If Iran can safetly go after nukes without being attack, then how is it in danger of being attacked?

    You do not have the adequate defense capability to protect yourselves yet, you seem certain that no one can touch Iran.

  426. kooshy says:

    In my opinion Iranian policy makers are correct to adopt a policy that Iran need not to have a nuclear arsenal for deterrence against outside powers, realistically no one any longer can use a nuclear option on anyone, the time for using a nuclear bomb was very short lived, it is possible that one day someone in Pakistan goes mad, or a Muslim salami fundamentalist takes over the Pakistan military but in that case the immediate danger would first come for India and US before any danger is directed toward Iran, in a way being shielded by India and US is enough deterrence in case of a mad Muslim fundamentalist take over in Pakistan.

    However needless to say that Iran should and need to advance her industrial and scientific base to maintain a legal NPT know how for a second strike capability
    (Japan Option) that I believe Iran has already achieved and poses.

    An actual Iranian nuclear bomb arsenal will increase animosity and makes possible Iran mongering within Iran’s region and among Sunni Arab street Muslims. If Iran had an actual nuclear arsenal it would be easier to motivate fear of a Shieh Iran among her street Sunni Arab neighbors who the Iranian have to live and do business with for long time to come. An unintended fear of 70 million Shieh Iranians is not logical for 400 million Sunni neighborhood markets for the most industrious country in Middle East.

    At the end of the day I kiss the hand of every Arazel and Obash who fought (I didn’t) in Iran-Iraq (you read US/EU) war. And thanks god Iranians didn’t use WMD in retaliation to Saddam’s chemical attacks if they had it would have been impossible for Iraq to be Iran’s best Arab friend today.

  427. Nasser says:

    M.Ali,

    It seems to me that it is you and people like you that are being reckless, not me. It is people with your mindset that have the ‘no one can fucking touch us!’ attitude. You want to have a confrontation with the richest and most powerful countries in the world but you refuse to properly arm yourselves. You want to poke America in the eye, threaten a nuclear armed Israel, and get in a fight with the Wahabis; and yet you refuse to spend more than 2% of your GDP on defense. You do not have the adequate defense capability to protect yourselves yet, you seem certain that no one can touch Iran.

    What gives you such confidence I don’t know but that doesn’t strike me as rational. Something has to give. Either you give in to the demands of your enemies and thus physically secure Iranian citizens that way or actually have the capability to defend your country when your enemies attack. You cannot have your cake and eat it too. You cannot have sustained hostilities against all these powerful entities and not have a proper defense when an attack actually comes. International laws and norms can’t protect you. It didn’t against Saddam’s chemical weapons and it wouldn’t against all the real threats confounding Iran right now. The world doesn’t care what happens to Iranians – a people thoroughly demonized by their media. You have no moral right to endanger the physical security of so many Iranians and the existence of the country itself. So either surrender to the Americans or build nukes.

  428. Nasser says:

    M.Ali says:

    “Thank God that more reasonable people are in charge of Iran rather than ‘no one can fucking touch us!’”

    - It is not just bravado.

    - You can ridicule me and dismiss my arguments but every serious military analyst have argued that Iran cannot be militarily prevented from acquiring nuclear weapons should it chooses to do so and can at most only be delayed. The Israeli defense community, the US defense community (including their Chief of Staff and their former defense secretary Robert Gates), the French Chief of Staff have all said this.

    - The reasons for this is complicated but in short I will highlight two of the most important factors that prevent a successful military alternative to preventing Iran from acquiring nukes:

    One: Iran’s passive defense – It’s very large network of tunnels and bunkers. Iran’s program is widely dispersed, deeply buried and redundant. Planners of an attack have to account for the fact that Iran has been preparing for a war for a long time now and recently seemed willing to go to war if its right to sell its oil was threatened. Any planner of an attack would have to rationally calculate that there are facilities that the outside world is unaware of.

    Second and more important: Iran already has the entire necessary infrastructure in place to do what I said. This is not just true for their nuclear capability but their delivery means as well. Iran’s missiles already target the places I mentioned. These missiles can accommodate a large enough warhead; and they are mobile or in silos making them survivable. Basically Iran has everything in place to go nuclear should it chose to do so. It is too late now! If the West wanted to militarily stop Iran’s nuclear program they missed their chance, they should have done it long ago.

    - Now there are only two ways to get around this. Either a prolonged occupation of the entire country – a military impossibility; or nuclear bombardment – a political impossibility.

    - Also add to this calculus Iran’s already existing ability to target the oil/gas infrastructure in the Persian Gulf and the cost of an attack goes up even further.

    - This is why I and many others have concluded that Iran can’t be militarily stopped from building nukes should it choose to do so.

  429. kooshy says:

    BIB
    After all I looks like Bahraini’s will miss this guy for Moharam, one can’t believe the ignorant stupid people who run policy in this country.

    http://www.google.com/hostednews/afp/article/ALeqM5gH5gLOnHymb7qlsrcfRmFB8TvyxQ?docId=CNG.3246569d886bcd23b3263021ceecb7e6.2c1

    US officials halt ‘Party Hard’ Bahrain outreach

    WASHINGTON — The US State Department was forced to deny Monday that it had invited a notorious rock star behind such classics as “Party Til You Puke” to represent America in the conservative Gulf state of Bahrain.

    Musician, DJ, motivational speaker and self-styled “King of Partying” Andrew W.K. had earlier claimed to have been named a US “cultural ambassador” to the troubled Arab kingdom, a close US ally beset by sectarian tension.

    “We will unite the human race with love and partying,” he declared.

  430. Dan Cooper says:

    The bombs Israel drops on the Gazans, and the planes that they use to drop them, and the weapons they use to occupy the West Bank and protect settlements are paid for, in substantial part, by the U.S. taxpayer

    Ron Paul: Blind Support of Israel Leads to Unexpected Consequences

    Video,,, http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article33153.htm

    As long as Israel can count on its destructive policies being underwritten by the U.S. taxpayer it can continue to engage in reckless behavior.

  431. kooshy says:

    “Whether you are a conservative or a neoliberal interventionist—I would put Susan Rice in that category—each of these camps supports armed, military intervention by the United States in the internal affairs of other countries. They do it for slightly different reasons, but the main strategic purpose is for the United States to pursue dominance.”

    “This was the major grand strategy that the United States adopted in the wake of the Cold War, the collapse of the Soviet Union.”

    For those who have fallowed History of US foreign affairs the real date for intervention and seeking hegemony should be pushed back to the time of Monroe.
    But showing US’s military might and expanding her hegemony to the entire globe became possible through the inhuman and “unnecessary” atomic explosion in Hiroshima. With this fact in mind, in realty the cold war started only after the USSR made her first atomic explosion when US no longer could force domination beyond her own pole of influence.

    As mentioned from the very early days a bureaucratic mentality for expansion and domination was cemented in US policy making circles which still exist, no US president or policy making body was ever able or willing to realistically change or make a meaningful modification to this hegemony seeking mentality, even if they campaigned for a change of policy, or really wanted to make a meaningful change. In reality any change or course correction to this mentality came and was possible only due to external challenges an difficulties not from an internal or US’s public request, this was true for the start of the cold war just when USSR made her 1st AB test, it is true for the Vietnam war, Korea, Iraq, etc. none was changed because US find out it’s better to be nice and accept the interest of the opposing view. Change and policy corrections only came when US lost a war or could not continue due to unbearable expenses.

    So it would be a wishful and naive to think if instead of Obama or Bush, Ralph Nader or even Jesus Christ was to become US president there would come a change to this US hegemonic mentality, no it would not, this mentality is cemented in US policy making bureaucracy and has been passed to the US public through US education system and media, whoever goes through US school or read and watch US media can feel this exceptionalism in their bones it becomes part of their existence. So far the history has proved the only way to change this hegemonic seeking mentality of US government and her Public, is only possible by way of hard and direct challenge in a military way to standup and pay a price and have them to pay till they had enough and willing to escape through roof tops. Often the scare inflicted on the US hegemonic mentality is not any less than the price paid by the victom.

  432. Persian Gulf says:

    “Life In Occupied Palestine”

    http://vimeo.com/6977999

  433. Kathleen says:

    The Petraeus scandal sure has fallen off the radar. The other story that disappeared rather quickly was the Wash Post story about the Navy analyst who had gotten in the way of the Cheney/neoconservative push to attack Iran. There was that one story and then totally shut down. Nothing

  434. Bussed-in Basiji says:

    Smith/Qazvini/IQ 146,

    It’s quite clear from your rantings that the closest you’ve ever been to a battlefield is when Luke Skywalker blew up the Death Star only using the Force. (Luke…feel the Force!)

    Your reference to those real men (unlike you) who sacrificed themselves as “arazel” reveals everything about you. Despite your IQ, the real you is revolting and believe me, the people of Iran for whom you in your delusions claim to speak are with this arazel on this one.

    Fyi (no pun intended), what saves and destroys nations is God- nothing else, what you in your arrogance call “ethos”. Like I told you, we defeated the better equipped Ba’athis with the Book and nothing else. The history is open to see for everyone as you said, but unlike you some of us saw and wrote that history.

    Just remember that arazel like me and people like the Supreme Leader were defending our beloved Iran before your Daddy had hair below his belly-botton. But we appreciate your contributions as well. No really, very generous of you.

    Listen very carefully when I tell you this you might learn something from a cretin arazel like me, an armchair strategist like you can never “out-nationalist” people who have sacrificed themselves for there homeland. Got that?

    And just for your further edification, the only arazel I came across recently were the ones that had my boot up their backside a few years ago around Ashura when they were cheering and laughing on that day. Again “the people” are with this scumbag on this one- not you.

    IQ 146, the only thing that will matter is when you step up to the plate if and when the enemy attacks- that’s it. Nothing else is of relevance, not your IQ, not your powers of analysis, not your delusions, only whether you will sacrifice yourself when the battle starts. Arrogant holes usually don’t (and didn’t in our day), but there is always hope, if Imam Hussein (as) intercedes for you.

  435. Richard Steven Hack says:

    “As to the proposition that Obama actually seeks to pull back somewhat from overseas adventurism and has a more “realist” view of the world, Hillary notes that “there’s just no evidence of it, if you look at the record.”

    Agree completely. People who believe that are still drinking the Obama Kool-Aid. And there are a LOT of people doing that, even in the antiwar camp – even here on this site.

    It’s called “cognitive dissonance”. It’s an endemic disease.

  436. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Oops…

    Iran’s VTOL drone a hoax
    http://www.uskowioniran.com/2012/11/irans-vtol-drone-hoax.html

    Or as some posters there have suggested the photo might have been cribbed in order to disguise the actual Iranian tech – if any.

    Maybe they just copied it – but the specs for the Japanese drone are pretty minimal – a few kg payload for fifteen minutes flight time… Not terribly useful.

    Bottom line: The author is correct about one thing – this doesn’t make the Iranian press look any better.

  437. Bussed-in Basiji says:

    From last thread:

    fyi,
    Separate from the issue of Iran, he was appointed “cultural ambassador for partying” to Bahrain- a Shia majority country- on the day of Ashura. Like I said to good to be true.

  438. M.Ali says:

    Smith, your post are explained well, and I like reading them, but I am not sure why everyone here somehow thinks they are the absolute authority in Truth (fyi, yourself, BiB, James, Hack, etc).

    If we take your hypothesis as valid, you have not yet explained well why Iran going straight towards nuclear arsenal won’t have it be attacked by western and regional powers. You are right when you say Iran has nor real friends, so why would they suddenly all go to sleep while Iran makes nuclear weapons? I think Iran is doing the best thing it can do at the moment, in terms of acquiring technical expertise in nuclear science as much as it can, while staying on the safe side.

    You have showed us the apocalyptic world if Iran stays on the current path, and you know where Iran needs to be, but the way to get there is not very realistic. If I was USA, Israel, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Russia, Europe, etc, and was suddenly sure Iran was going go nuclear, I’d attack it and I’d know for sure, aside from Syria, and Hezbollah, no one would really come to its defense.

    I think Iran has other, better choices for its security..

  439. M.Ali says:

    Nasser,

    “- This is a false assumption. North Korea doesn’t rely on China for her defense but economic/diplomatic support. North Korea has taken Seoul hostage to prevent an attack on itself. Nuclear weapons just add even more credibility to the threat.”

    NK and China do have a defense agreement that is renewed every 20 years. China has a stake in NK’s not fallen under USA’s sphere of influence, therefore I’d wager if America ever decides to attack NK using its army, I’d say that China would AT THE VERY LEAST support NK with enough aid, weapons, and intelligence, if not actual soldiers, while vetoing everything in the UN.

    “Similarly, what prevents an attack on Iran is her ability to harm the Southern Persian Gulf Kingdoms and particularly their oil/gas infrastructure, thus threatening the global economy itself. But Iran needs a more potent deterrent over time to be truly safe. I have heard many prominent Americans including John Baker, John Podesta, Henry Kissinger advocate that America will someday have to attack on Iran and just bear the consequences.”

    Yes, and I think Iran going the nuclear weapon path will have USA and its allies attack Iran and they will bear the consequences. The world has shown that if push comes to shove, nothing really can prevent a war, otherwise we wouldn’t have had two world wars.

    “And no, Iran doesn’t need 100 nuclear weapons, ICBMs, thermo nuclear weapons or anything fancy or complex like that. For the medium term they should simply adopt the North Korean strategy of taking America’s allies hostage to prevent attacks on itself. Iran just needs to point nuclear tipped missiles say with 10-20 kiloton warheads on Riyadh, Kuwait City, Doha, Abu Dhabi, Tel Aviv and Haifa. 10 warheads would be more than enough for this. This is deterrence enough against her current enemies. If someday necessary, this is sufficient to deter Pakistan also.”

    First of all, I’d argue that US & Israel and etc wouldn’t make it easy for Iran to reach that level. And I’d say that even nuclear attacks on its neighbors won’t really be the best safeguard. Can you imagine if Iran DOES nuke its neighbors? The world will probably clean Iran from the map and centuries later children will talk about the lost races of Iranians.

    “This is well within the means of Iranians to do and if Iran decides to do this, there isn’t a damn thing the international community can do to prevent it. I suppose what is preventing the right course of action is internal disorganization and bickering.”

    Thank God that more reasonable people are in charge of Iran rather than “no one can fucking touch us!” mindset of some of you. Iran has been playing the world with the best of diplomatic tact. Pushing when we can, retreating when required, finding allies, doing business directly and indirectly, all the while keeping our independence. The geopolitical dance Iran has been doing has been beautiful to watch and decades later, it would be a perfect example of how a country was able to really and truly be independent AND WIN. But it doesn’t consist of rushing like a mad bull and going “WE’RE THE BEST WE’RE THE BEST NO ONE DARES ATTACK US WOOOO”..

  440. M.Ali says:

    fyi,

    “Should Iranian leaders decide to assemble nuclear weapons, they cannot be prevented from doing so.”

    See, I’m as proud of an Iranian as the next guy, but are you so sure of that? If Iran was so sure of that, they’d say, fuck the west, and get out of NPT, even if they didn’t want to make nuclear weapons. But everyone knows that the threat of war is real, no matter how much you don’t think it will happen, no matter how much BiB has a boner for it to take the shortcut path to heaven, but I think there are enough high officials know that threat of war actually is a possibility and they do their best to walk the tight rope, keep their sovereignty while keeping our country safe from war. .

  441. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Israel may strike at ship allegedly carrying Iranian rockets to Gaza – report
    http://rt.com/news/israel-gaza-weapons-ship-528/#

  442. Richard Steven Hack says:

    A former Ambassador to Iran speaks out against war…

    War with Iran: Real, horrific costs, but what benefits?
    http://www.theglobeandmail.com/commentary/munk-debates/war-with-iran-real-horrific-costs-but-what-benefits/article5660469/

  443. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Iran losing Arab sympathy for backing Assad: Hamas
    http://dawn.com/2012/11/26/iran-losing-arab-sympathy-for-backing-assad-hamas/

  444. James Canning says:

    Israel in fact a means for the US “to assert dominance” in the Middlke East? Or is this just a cover story to deceive the American public into supporting Israel’s insane illegal colonisation programme in the West Bank, etc etc.

  445. Richard Steven Hack says:

    New malware attacking Iranian corporations…

    W32.Narilam – Business Database Sabotage
    http://www.symantec.com/connect/blogs/w32narilam-business-database-sabotage

    However, it may not be as significant as indicated above:

    Iran dismisses threat of Narilam malware
    http://www.itproportal.com/2012/11/26/iran-dismisses-threat-of-narilam-malware/

  446. Liz says:

    The US government is sick and shameless. It is responsible for the death of Iranian children:

    http://www.presstv.ir/detail/2012/11/26/274600/iranian-patients-victims-of-us-sanctions/

  447. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Notice the wording of this poll – a “nuclear capable” Iran…

    World can’t tolerate nuclear-capable Iran, poll finds
    http://www.vancouversun.com/news/World+cant+tolerate+nuclearcapable+Iran+poll+finds/7609260/story.html

    94 percent! I think that leaves a couple of us here and the Leveretts…

  448. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Patriots might Stay Longer in Turkey than Expected
    http://www.turkishweekly.net/news/145134/patriots-might-stay-longer-in-turkey-than-expected.html

    In short, they’re not there just for Syria, but also for Iran.

  449. Pirouz says:

    I’ve a number of African-American friends, some of which possess a higher education. During the previous term, they would say to me that Obama lacks the power to make effective change. They pointed to Clinton and others and said he just has to make change on a smaller scale, as he’s black and relatively new on the scene. I didn’t buy it then. But now, after reelection, that excuse can’t be made.

    Don’t get me wrong, I voted for Obama again. There are other issues beside foreign policy that interest me. And I have to admit, more than half of my vote represented a protest vote against the Republicans.

    I just re-watched the Battlefield Vietnam military history documentary series on YouTube. Like the saying goes: The more things change, the more they don’t.

  450. Kathleen says:

    McCain and Lindsey Graham have been non stop pushing for deeper investigations into the Obama administrations spin about what really was and took place in the attacks on the US consulate in Benghazi. They have been persistently been pushing for this. So they may be complicit but are pushing hard for a deeper investigation

  451. Kathleen says:

    How is Harman even a contender? Caught red handed undermining a Federal investigation and nine time delayed and finally dismissed trial into Aipac’s two top officials Rosen/Weissman passing US classified intelligence to Israeli officials? How can she even be in the running?