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The Race for Iran


U.S. Representative to IAEA, Glyn Davies

Ever since Nobel laureate Mohamed ElBaradei stepped down as head of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) in late 2009, the United States and some of its allies have pushed Baradei’s successor, Yukiya Amano, to ratify Western arguments that Iran is trying to acquire nuclear weapons.  Today, Amano authorized the release of an IAEA report, see here, purporting to do just that. 

Predictably, the report is being treated in some quarters as an effective casus belli.  As the pro-Israel Washington Institute for Near East Policy commented after the document’s release, see here, the report “should serve to shift the public debate from whether Iran is developing a nuclear weapon, to how to stop it”.  It is not difficult to imagine how Republican presidential candidates will strive to “out-hawk” one another—and, especially, President Obama—during their next debate this coming Saturday as to their willingness to go to war to stop the Islamic Republic from building a nuclear bomb.    

But the report—arguably the most anticipated document of its kind since the NPT was first advanced in 1968—does not in any way demonstrate that Iran is “developing a nuclear weapon”.  Rather, it once again affirms, as the IAEA has for decades, Iran’s “non-diversion” of nuclear material.  In other words, even if the Islamic Republic wanted to build nuclear weapons (and Tehran continues to deny, at the highest levels of authority, that it wishes to do so) it does not have the weapons-grade material essential to the task.    

Nevertheless, Amano chose to focus the report on unsubstantiated intelligence reports, provided almost entirely by the United States, Israel, and other Western governments, alleging that the Islamic Republic is working on a nuclear weapons program.  Most of this information has been available to the IAEA for years.  But Baradei refused to publicize it during his tenure as the Agency’s chief—because he could neither corroborate it nor be confident about its provenance and quality.  Remember, Baradei had been right about the state of Iraq’s nuclear program in 2002, when all of the intelligence services and national governments that would later try getting him spun up about Iran had been spectacularly wrong.  And he was not going to let the United States or anyone else steamroller him on Iran.      

Amano, unfortunately, does not bring the same kind of intellectual and political integrity to his job as his predecessor.  The United States, Israel, and other Western governments had to work hard to get the IAEA’s Board of Governors to elect Amano in 2009, by the narrowest possible margin, barely overcoming a challenge from South Africa’s distinguished ambassador to the Agency, Abdul Minty.  But Washington and its allies got what they wanted.  An October 2009 cable from the U.S. mission to the IAEA, published last year by Wikileaks, see here, reported that Amano had “reminded [the U.S. Ambassador to the IAEA] on several occasions that he would need to make concessions” at times to developing countries, “but that he was solidly in the U.S. court on every key strategic decision”, including “the handling of Iran’s alleged nuclear weapons program.”    

And so the latest IAEA report treats its readers to sensational stories of Iranian nuclear weapons designs and experiments on things that can supposedly only be applied to the fabrication of nuclear weapons.  None of these stories is corroborated by hard evidence, but the Amano-led IAEA passes them on anyway, with its effective imprimatur. 

There are many reasons to question virtually every detail in the IAEA’s accounting of the “possible military dimensions” to Iran’s nuclear program.  But, more importantly, the stories do not indicate that Tehran is currently trying to produce nuclear weapons.  (And, remember, Iran does not have the weapons-grade fissile material needed to build a nuclear bomb.)  In fact, no one has ever produced a shred of evidence that Iran has ever actually tried to build a nuclear weapon or taken a decision to do so.  And that is why—notwithstanding the efforts of the Obama Administration, some allied governments, neoconservative and pro-Israel constituencies in Washington, and others to hype IAEA report to the maximum extent possible—the new IAEA report is, substantively, a colossal non-event.      

The NPT prohibits non-nuclear-weapon state signatories from receiving “the transfer from any transferor whatsoever of nuclear weapons or other nuclear explosive devices or of control over such weapons or explosive devices directly, or indirectly”.  Non-nuclear-weapon states also undertake “not to manufacture or otherwise acquire nuclear weapons or other nuclear explosive devices” and “not to seek or receive any assistance in the manufacture of nuclear weapons or other nuclear explosive devices”. 

The emphasis is on “manufacture” and “acquisition”.  The Treaty prohibits the building of actual weapons.  It does not prohibit signatories from studying nuclear weapons designs, or researching neutron initiators, or even conducting experiments on high-explosives of the sort that could be used in a bomb. 

Even if every single point in the IAEA’s report were absolutely, 100 percent true, it would mean that Iran is working systematically to master the skills it would need to fabricate nuclear weapons at some hypothetical point down the road, should it ever decide to do so.  This is how we ourselves have long interpreted the strategic purposes of the Islamic Republic’s nuclear program—to create perceptions on the part of potential adversaries that Tehran is capable of building nuclear weapons in a finite period of time, without actually building them.  As Baradei himself has pointed out, see here, having a “nuclear weapons capability” is not the same as having nuclear weapons.

Iranian efforts to develop a “nuclear weapons capability”, as described by Baradei, may make American and Israeli elites uncomfortable.  But it is not a violation of the NPT or any other legal obligation that the Islamic Republic has undertaken.  While the NPT prohibits non-nuclear-weapon states from building atomic bombs, developing a nuclear weapons capability is, in Baradei’s words, “kosher” under the NPT, see here.  It is certainly not a justification—strategically, legally, or morally—for armed aggression against Iran.     

In the end, the United States and its allies have a choice to make.  They can continue down a path that will ultimately prompt them to launch yet another illegal and ill-considered war for hegemonic domination in the Middle East.  But the consequences of attacking Iran are likely to be far more damaging for America’s strategic position in the Middle East than the reverses it suffered as a result of its 2003 invasion of Iraq.  (We would ask anyone who questions whether the Iraq war was profoundly counter-productive for the United States simply to compare Washington’s standing and influence in the Middle East 10 years ago to its standing and influence there today; viewed through this prism, the measure of self-inflicted damage to America’s strategic position in this critical region is truly extraordinary.) 

Alternatively, the United States and its allies can accept the Islamic Republic as an enduring political order with legitimate interests and sovereign rights, and come to terms with it—much as the United States came to terms with the People’s Republic of China in the  1970s.  In the nuclear arena, specifically, this means accepting, in principle and in reality, the continued development of Iran’s capacity to enrich uranium, while working with Tehran to put in place multilateral arrangements to ensure that the proliferation risks associated with uranium enrichment in Iran (as in any other country) are controlled. 

Based on our conversations with senior Iranian officials, we are convinced that this is precisely the sort of conversation Tehran wants to have with Western and other international interlocutors about their nuclear program.  But the United States—under the Obama Administration every bit as much as under the George W. Bush Administration—refuses to pursue this sort of dialogue. 

Until that changes, the United States is headed toward another strategic disaster in the Middle East.  And, by succumbing to American pressure, the IAEA has raised the odds that this is precisely what will occur. 

–Flynt Leverett and Hillary Mann Leverett



  1. James Canning says:


    The moron in the White House rejected the policy recommendations of Iraq Study Group because he did not want to admit he had f*cked up like few presidents in the history of the US. So, instead, years more war at vast expense, and failure to make deals with Iran and Syria! We can thank General Petraeus for the stupidity of G W Bush. And credit also goes to Robert Gates, and of course Condoleezza Rice (and Stephen Hadley). For squandering many hundreds of billions of dollars, and opportunity for engagement with Iran.

  2. James Canning says:


    Religion plays a role in the various wars, unrest, etc., but my point with WTF is that there is no issue of one religion’s displacing another religion, in any country. And all countries in Middle East are controlled by Muslims, apart from Israel and Lebanon. And if Lebanon becomes majority-Shia, will the political structure still hold?

    Of course I am aware that delusional Christian Zionists in US and Canada encourage idiotic Israeli scheme (of Greater Israel).

  3. James Canning says:


    Yes of course I agree with you that, from standpoint of Iran, the way was open in 2006-07 for improvement of US-Iran relations. The gross incompetence of Condoleezza Rice played a large part in having the opportunity slip by.

    From my point of view, Obama blundered badly in 2009 when he did not try to achieve a negotiated resolution of situation in Afghanistan. Instead of trebling the US troop presence and widening the insurgency.

    Maybe Cordesman will grasp the fact the US need not squander hundreds of billions of dollars every year, in the Middle East. in order to protect vital national interests of the American people.

  4. fyi says:

    James Canning says: November 17, 2011 at 1:25 pm

    Cordesman actually is not going far enough in his assessment.

    He could also have indicated that US had failed also at the grand strategic level.

    That the aims of US Grand Strategy as formulated by men like Dr. Khalilzad in early 1990s have zero of chance of ever being relaized. That is; that opportunity is lost permanently to the United States.

    In regards to 2007, I think you finally are in agreement with me that progress with iran was possible at that time.

    But the Axis Powers decided to continue on their path of confrontation, hiding behind the nuclear file.

  5. fyi says:

    James Canning says: November 17, 2011 at 1:16 pm

    WTF’s statement is not devoid of Truth.

    Schismatic Christians (US, Canada, UK) are partisans of the State of Israel.

    State of Israel – a country whose national anthem sings of the “Longing in the soul of a Jew” – wages a war for control of Palestine that is fundamentally a religious fantasy.

    Next, we have the Shia Fortress of Iran – the Islamic Republic of Iran, the Mountain Fortress of Shia – the reason for its existence being Shia Islam opposing both the Jewish Fantasy and the predominant global power that was created by Schismatic Christians.

    We have the Syrian Ba’athist state that is a veneer for the Alawite sect’s control of Syria.

    We have the Hezbollah of Lebanon, the Shia Arabs whose relationship with Iran goes back 500 years.

    Next e have the various Sunni political tendencies such as Muslim Brothers, neo-Salafis, and various other extremists.

    Other than these, no, WTF is quite wrong – there is no war of religions here.

  6. paul says:

    It’s pretty funny, in such a perverse way, when the dictator-riddled Arab League, where everyone seems to wade in blood up to their boots, casts out Syria. And Qatar, which is providing much support to Rebels in Syria, one hears, and which has provided much of the highly questionable propaganda, is the judge, jury and executioner? We truly have entered bizarro-world, and just to think that the ride hasn’t even really begun to get strange yet…

  7. James Canning says:


    The Christian leaders in Mount Lebanon and Beirut, at end of First World War, refused to allow Feisal to include Lebanon in Syria, where Feisal hoped to be king. Some of the Maronite Christians would have preferred the British to take over, but of course there was the Sykes-Picot agreement, which the French used to convince Britain to allow France to take over both Lebanon and Syria.

  8. James Canning says:


    Most of the people in what became Lebanon, at end of First World War, wanted to remain united with Syria.

    Maronite Christians wanted the French in, to large degree. Close business and other ties had existed for a very long time.

    US Senate, of course, refused to allow American membership in League of Nations. US military opposed taking mandates for Armenia or Palestine. (Armenian Mandate never came into existence.)

  9. James Canning says:


    Cordesman claims the US “is on the thin edge of strategic failure” in Iraq. I think this is rubbish, and that it reflects long-standing delusional thinking on his part.

    US should have followed advice of Iraq Study Group, made deals with Syria and Iran, and withdrawn back in 2006-07. Moron in the White House, and his astoundingly incompetent Secretary of State (Condi Rice), apparently were so stupid as to believe Iran would not allow US to get out of Iraq unless US agreed to allow Iran to have nukes!

  10. James Canning says:


    If the complex situation in the Middle East is a “religious war”, what do you mean? I can see that an overthrow of the Assad gov’t in Syria likely would produce a gov’t controlled by the Sunnis.

    Some fanatical Israelis hope to find a pretext and opportunity to drive most of the remaining Christians and Muslims out of the West Bank.

    Shia will remain in control of Iraq, even if there are various serious disturbances to the peace.

  11. James Canning says:


    Yes, a good case can be made that Hillary Clinton has allowed power to go to her head. She has little strategic thinking ability. And not much understanding of the Middle East. Her shortcomings were also to be found in Condoleezza Rice.

  12. hans says:

    The Israeli paper Israel-Ayom reports today about a new ‘Congressional bill’ that would require the “American administration to support Israel in a move deemed necessary to defend itself against the Iranian nuclear threat.”

    Five Republican congressmen who visited Israel last week disclosed the bill.

    The bill states an “expression of support for Israel’s right to defend its sovereignty and to protect the lives and safety of its citizens and use all necessary means to confront and eliminate the nuclear threat that emerges from the Islamic Republic of Iran, including use military force in the absence of other diplomatic means available in the near future. “

    The initiator of the bill is Rep. Doug Lamborn (Colorado).

  13. Rehmat says:

    While all GOP presidential hopefuls with the exception of Ron Paul, are calling Obama to attack Iran for Israel – the Pennsylvania State police on Wednesday arrested Oscar Ramiro Ortega-Hernandez, 21, for allegedly shooting at the White House. However, the Zionist-controlled mainstream media ignored the news because the shooter has “Israel” tattoo on left side of his neck.

    The Park Police, the authority in the area of the National Mall, found evidence, including a gun and spent shells, in a vehicle abandoned several blocks away that led to Ortega’s arrest warrant.

    Photos of a bearded Ortega pictured outdoors and smiling, and showing his “Israel” tattoo in a flowery script, appear on the US Park Police web posting on November 11, 2011.

    The US Secret Service on Tuesday discovered two bullets that hit the White House. One was lodged in a protected glass window on the residential level.

    Both Barack Obama and his wife were out of country at the time of the shooting.

    I’m glad, the Jewish Lobby cannot pin this terrorist act on Iran.

    Former CIA officer for 22 years, Professor Michael Scheuer (Georgetown University) said on Israel-Firster Glenn Beck’s CNN Show: “Israel is such an enormous detriment to the United States, our relationship with the Israeli. That it’s going to become clear to the Americans that this is just going to cost us blood and lives the longer we pursue this relationship with the Israelis”.

    Israel operates it largest espionage network in United States, the very country which has donated trillions of dollars to the Zionist entity since 1960s and has shielded its crimes against humanity at international forums since 1948. In addition to Katya (Jewish spies), Israel also maintains over one million Sayanin (local Jewish collaborators who works for Israeli espionage network) around the world.


  14. Unknown Unknowns says:

    15 minute video interview with Robert Kelley.

    Former IAEA Inspector: Misleading IAEA Report Proves Nothing


    For those of you interested in minutia.

  15. Irshad says:

    I wonder if this secret Ayrab diplomat was Jordanian or Saudi by any change?


    The last sentence is interesting – is Iran preparing itself for the removal of Assad?

  16. Empty says:


    Thank you for the CSIS report. It was interesting to observe that most of the areas assessed to have had either some growth or decidedly sustainable growth are mostly Tajik and Hazarat areas (the areas where Iran has had the most activity and influence).

  17. Unknown Unknowns says:

    BiBiJon says “Among the first Chinese reactions may be admitting Iran into SCO.”

    From what little I know, you are right in the sense that Russia has been OK with that and that it is China who has been holding back. But that would be a move that will piss off Uncle Weasel in a pretty big way, and I wonder if Russia will let it happen before her accession to the WTO if finalized?

  18. BiBiJon says:

    Fiorangela says:
    November 16, 2011 at 7:26 pm

    “Obama lays claim to the Pacific, initiates military basing in Australia to combat Chinese influence.”

    Fiorangela, these are desperate times, that lead to desperate measures. Those (Walt/Mearsheimer) who argue US foreign policy is skewed ‘only’ in Middle East because of the Lobby, fail to predict how the untenable policies in the region ultimately will have a (negative) global impact.

    I would argue that US is going to Australia to pressure China vis-a-vis Iran, (and financial rescue of Europe).

    China’s challenge for the US is economic. Her non-interfering approach is appealing to most counties in the world. China’s non-military winning strategy has no military counter. Thus I regard Clinton’s comments:

    “There are challenges facing the Asia-Pacific right now that demand America’s leadership, from ensuring freedom of navigation in the South China Sea to countering North Korea’s provocations and proliferation activities to promoting balanced and inclusive economic growth,”

    as really laying a claim to freedom of maneuver in the Middle East, or else US will constrain China in South China Sea.

    Another words, US is so bereft of Mid East policy options that have the slightest hope of working, that she is now attempting to raise tensions with China and Russia in order to later use the deescalation as a bargaining chip. The problem is that all the king’s horses and all the kings men (even if coerced into marching in tandem) can not put (Mid East) Humpty Dumpty together again.

    Prediction: No gain in Mid East, but unnecessary animus created with China and Russia will have enduring costs. Among the first Chinese reactions may be admitting Iran into SCO.

  19. Unknown Unknowns says:

    The Self-Conflation of Judaism with Zionism

    There are a thousand hacking at the branches of evil to one who is striking at the root. – Henry David Thoreau

    Anne Rice, author of the series of best-selling vampire novels and, most recently, fictional accounts of the life of Christ, has taken to Facebook to announce she is no longer a Christian:

    For those who care, and I understand if you don’t: Today I quit being a Christian. I’m out. I remain committed to Christ as always but not to being “Christian” or to being part of Christianity. It’s simply impossible for me to “belong” to this quarrelsome, hostile, disputatious, and deservedly infamous group. For ten …years, I’ve tried. I’ve failed. I’m an outsider. My conscience will allow nothing else.

    Later she wrote:
    As I said below, I quit being a Christian. I’m out. In the name of Christ, I refuse to be anti-gay. I refuse to be anti-feminist. I refuse to be anti-artificial birth control. I refuse to be anti-Democrat. I refuse to be anti-secular humanism. I refuse to be anti-science. I refuse to be anti-life. In the name of …Christ, I quit Christianity and being Christian. Amen.

    Look, I’m going to make this as short as I can. All of you are wrong on this one, OK?

    Judaism swallowed a poison pill, has digested it, and assimilated it. It is too late, in other words, for Judaism to do anything about it: it has gone past the point of no return. That poison pill is the absurd ideology that it Zionism. The entirety of Judaism’s rabbinate, almost without exception, and certainly without the exception of the rabbi of Jerusalem at the time of the establishment of the ‘Zionist Entity’, opposed the creation of Israel. This was based on Torah and Talmudic teachings that it is only the Messiah who can bring the children of Israel back to their Promised Land (and that any move without the leadership and guidance of the Messiah was bound to lead to catastrophe.) The tiny minority of rabbis who supported the creation of the state was, in the eyes of mainstream Judaism, a marginal non-entity, and was the exception by which the rule of opposition to Zionism within Judaism was underscored. But now that the Zionist Entity is a *fait accompli*, the situation has changed. Now, “the entirety of Judaism’s rabbinate, almost without exception, and certainly without the exception of the rabbi of Jerusalem” *support* Zionism, and “The tiny minority of rabbis [i.e., Neturei Karta Judaism] who [oppose] the creation of the state [and its continued justification] are, in the eyes of mainstream Judaism, a marginal non-entity, and are the exception by which the norm of support for Zionism within Judaism is underscored.

    And so, Judaism itself (and at its own hands) has undergone a massive seismic shift, from whatever it was, to being a religion which actively supports and perpetuates the most egregious violations of ethical norms on a continual and consistent basis for the last 60 years of human history. This is their choice. Why the non-Moslem world has not understood this change is a story for another day, but irrespective of the reasons why and of the failure of non-Moslems to register this massive change… there it is.

    The overwhelming majority of Jews, be they orthodox rabbis or so-called “progressives” like Noam Chomsky, Amy Goodman or Norman Finkelstein believe in and fight with every fiber of their body for the right of Israel to exist as a state on stolen land, with no right of return for the dispossessed as this would “dilute the Jewish character of the state” (Or some other similar paraphrase). And those are the “good” Jews; the ones that hold this outrageous and hideous amoral position. The “bad” ones believe in Israel’s right to expand and clear the rest of the stable of the Arab dogs, to use Churchill’s words, as Priouz 2 rightly quoted.

    Those are the discourse limits within Weaselschaft. Bleak, isn’t it? It is only the good Jews of Neturei Karta, whom I no longer call Jews, so as to spare them the odium, but ‘Neturei Karta Jews’, that are the exception to this rule. And so far as, so long as, and to the extent that these good people are nothing but a marginal within ‘World Jewry’ – a voice that is constantly trivialized and ridiculed by Jewish organs such as The Forward and The ?ew York Times – to that extent, the self-conflation of Jewry, Judaism and Jews and Zionism obtains.

    The Liberal failure to recognize this is merely an indication of *their* moral degeneracy, and their falling for the Jewish hokeydoke.

    Well, that should be sufficient for most RFI’ers. But for Eric and Arnold’s sake, I will drive the point home.

    Let us take an example. Let us say, for the sake of argument, that the Pope and the College of Cardinals looked the other way, when the first alarms of child sexual abuse sounded. OK, so they looked the other way. Call it institutional inertia. Then, as more and more worms came out of the woodwork, they, the senior bishops (or rabbis, in our case) had a choice to make: either condemn the abuse and take responsibility for it, or to cover up and enable it, and even (as in our case, to extend the metaphor), partake in the abuse and cheer it on.

    Thanks to its twice having rejected the messengers of God and guidance from above, that is exactly what has happened to Judaism. Without exception, all, repeat all, rabbis within mainstream Judaism, be they orthodox or reform, support the theft of Palestinian land and oppose the right of return of their rightful owners. They are cheerleading this orgy, and all the lame left does every time someone who has not drunk the Kool Aid points this out is wag a finger and admonish the poor soul for conflating Jews and Judaism with Zionism. Well, you know, maybe that shit will fly on Silverstein’s site, or Juan Cole’s or whoever else there is that is out there, but here on RFI, I for one am not buyin’ it.

    If Moslems can be called on their failure, for example, to reject slavery (as we certainly should be), why should Jews be exempt from being called, collectively, as racist pigs, which is not what they were, but is, unfortunately, what they have become.

    All your failure to do so does, left “progressive” liberals, is to equate your moral bankruptcy with that of what has become of the Jews, and make you complicit blameworthy enablers of it.

    Sag-e zard baradar-e shoghal-eh.

    Wa’llahu ‘alim.

  20. fyi says:


    Dr. Cordesman on Iraq and Afghanistan (or Why Iranian leaders won’t budge)


  21. kooshy says:

    Outrage at UK plan to put audio recorders in taxis

    By CASSANDRA VINOGRAD – Associated Press

    Read more: http://www.bellinghamherald.com/2011/11/14/2270786/outrage-at-uk-plan-to-put-audio.html#ixzz1dvuG0GGW

    “LONDON – Civil liberties campaigners on Monday expressed outrage at an English city’s plan to install audio recorders in licensed taxi cabs as a security measure.

    Officials in Oxford say that starting next year its 600-plus cabs will carry audio-equipped cameras that run whenever the vehicle is in use, “leading the way” in ensuring the safety of passengers and drivers.”

  22. WTF says:

    kooshy says:
    November 16, 2011 at 9:53 pm
    therefore is correct to say that Israelite citizens are responsible for the actions of their government, but Jews of the world don’t elect the government in Israel so why they should be held responsible for the Israeli regime’s atrocities.


    Understood, and let me be clear, I am not insinuating that they SHOULD be. I am simply pointing out that it is a phenomenon that exists. Your description of Americans (being the citizens of an elected government) and Jews living abroad (having no say in the Israeli government) while true, doesn’t directly apply to my larger point. I am first-generation American and have been nothing but critical of the American government since I was old enough to care one way or the other. I don’t vote for President or representatives to Congress or the Senate, because I refuse to validate the process. HOWEVER, I still am one of the “Americans that is held morally responsible” for this government’s actions. Not because I necessarily deserve it, but because when millions of people are murdered and perpetual injustice is spread across the globe, there is blowback.

    In regards to Photi’s comment that I was referring to, I did think he was a little animated in the way he articulated himself, but what I took from his comment is that if anyone should be sensitive to the plight of the Palestinians it should be the Jewish people. The fact that this injustice is being perpetrated by Jews is impossible to brush over.

    I completely agree that both the situation in the ME as well as this conversation should not become a religious war. We can steer our conversation, but I am not convinced that the situation in the ME is not a religious war. I wish it not to be, but it sure looks like it is (and by design). Just my humble opinion.

  23. WTF says:

    Photi says:
    November 16, 2011 at 6:12 pm

    Jews are a fully assimilated and integral part of American society and many other societies as well, their survival does not depend on Israel. That comment of mine (about Jewish survival) was overboard and is simply not true.


    And America is a very diverse and plural society, but that doesn’t change the reality that at some point the transgressions of the Country’s leaders reflect on the society as a whole. Likewise, when the proclaimed “Nation-State of the Jewish People” is engaged in genocide of the indigenous Muslim population, it begins to take a toll on the public perception of Jewish people (this is not to say that it is fair or even logical, in fact it strikes of xenophobia, but it is reality). It becomes even more difficult to emotionally separate Israelis and Jews in general, when disingenuous Zionist defenders scream “ANTI-SEMITISM” any time anyone is even mildly critical of Israel.

    The idea that Jewish or American people’s demise is imminent is a stretch, however, the idea that we can have atrocious things done in our name and come out untarnished, is naïve. Again, it may not be fair, but neither is what the Palestinians are being subjected to.

    A quick anecdote, which only validates the existence of this phenomena, and not the principle of it:

    I was out having drinks with a few friends. Among them were a friend of mine from Gaza (1st generation American) and another friend who is Jewish (3rd generation American, family emigrated from Europe and never lived in Israel). As we were sharing stories of our families, my Palestinian friend began telling of some of the horrors that his mother and father had witnessed, including the deaths of his aunt, uncle and cousins. Our whole group was somber, but my Jewish friend apologized. This struck us as odd, as he didn’t own any responsibility (even indirectly) for what had happened to his friend’s family. He isn’t Israeli, and happens to be a vocal critic of Zionism as well as past and present Israeli governments. When we asked him why he felt compelled to apologize, he basically said: “Imagine that you are talking to a friend that is Japanese-American, and he tells you about his family being wiped out by an American atomic bomb, wouldn’t you feel like apologizing?”

    Now, I must say, I did NOT agree with him. I don’t feel like apologizing for the bullshit that the American Government does. However, his position did leave an impression on me.

  24. kooshy says:

    WTF says:

    November 16, 2011 at 4:57 pm

    “Much like Americans is held morally responsible for the actions of their government.”

    Thais statement whole heartedly I accept, since as you state the majority of Americans go to the polls and elect a government with their majority vote therefore everyone that choses to vote is morally responsible for that elected government’s action, therefore is correct to say that Israelite citizens are responsible for the actions of their government, but Jews of the world don’t elect the government in Israel so why they should be held responsible for the Israeli regime’s atrocities.

    I am not a Jewish but I feel dragging this to a religious war is in no one’s interest.

  25. Aspidistra says:


    Mordechai Vanunu says Iran Poses No Threat

  26. Fiorangela says:

    Jeffrey Blankfort unleashed, on Mondoweiss, Gershom Gorenberg Says One State Solution Would Produce Another Lebanon.


    Jeffrey Blankfort says:
    November 16, 2011 at 8:06 pm

    Zionism was NOT about saving Jewish lives, it was about building a Jewish state and if there was choice to make between the two, as Ben-Gurion has been widely quoted, building the state had its priority.

    If saving Jewish lives had been a priority, for example, the mainstream Zionist movement in the US would not have gone out of its way to sabotage an attempt by the Irgun in the US to raise money to purchase the safety of the Jews of Romania before the Nazis’s arrival by claiming, without proof, that an offer from the Romanian government was a hoax.

    If saving Jewish lives had been a priority, it would have been the main subject of the historic Zionist meeting at the Biltmore Hotel in 1942 when they planned the state. In fact, other than offering “a message of hope and encouragement to their fellow Jews in the Ghettos and concentration camps of Hitler-dominated Europe and prays that their hour of liberation may not be far distant,” there was no mention of the holocaust or request that the allies take steps to halt it. Rather, the assembled Zionists called for:
    (1) the fulfillment of the original purpose of the Balfour Declaration and the Mandate; (2) “to found there a Jewish Commonwealth,” (3) “unalterable rejection of the White Paper of May 1939,” and (4) “that Palestine be established as a Jewish Commonwealth integrated in the structure of the new democratic world.” link to jewishvirtuallibrary.org

    If saving Jewish lives had been a priority, Yitzhak Shamir, whose Stern Gang, wrote a letter to Der Führer, seeking to establish an alliance with the Nazis against Britain, saying they were ideological soulmates , would never have been allowed to show his face in Israel let alone become its prime minister. When he was appointed to replace Begin when the latter resigned in 1983, a group of holocaust survivors wrote a letter to the government claiming that to have this would be collaborator as prime minister was a sacrilege. I was there at the time and found that report buried deep in an article in the Jerusalem Post.

    If saving Jewish lives had been a priority, articles about what was happening to the Jews in Europe would not have been relegated to the back pages of the Post, nor would the Zionists, as Ben Hecht describes it in “Perfidy,” would they have turned in Joel Brand to the British as he was attempting to mak a deal with the Nazis to rescue Hungarian Jews.

    If saving Jewish lives had been a priority, rather then persecuting Malchiel Greenberg, a 73 year old survivor from Hungary for denouncing the head of the Zionist organization in Hungary, Rezo Kastner, for collaborating with the Nazis and testifying at the war crimes trial of Nazi SS General Kurt Bucher, the Israeli government would have prosecuted Kastener as a collaborator.

    While one may make excuses for the Zionists making the Haavara agreement with the Nazis which allowed German Jews to emigrate to Palestine there can be no excuses for the campaign they carried out in Germany designed to expose assimilated Jews while repeating the anti-semitic propaganda that was one of the foundations of Zionism, that Jews could not live successfully with non-Jews, that they could not be true Germans, which I mentioned in my post.

    I do, indeed, insist that Zionism is a”poisonous elixir that taints everything” it touches. Let’s look at the record. (A) If the Zionists had not pushed the US to come to the aid of Britain in WW 1, and they only did so when hated Russia pulled out, it is likely that the war would have come to an end without a German defeat, hundreds of thousands of lives would have been saved and we would have seen either Hitler or the holocaust, nor for that matter, the state of Israel.

    (B) If the Zionists had not sought to establish a new European colony in the Arab Middle East at a time when the world was moving toward decolonization, there would only not have been a Palestinian Nakba, there would still be Jewish communities throughout the region, some thriving, some not, but all there. The anti-Semitism of which you speak, was a European concoction and the Zionists seized upon it as a godsend and have never let go.

    If there had been no Israel, there would have been no motive for the American Jewish establishment to undertake a campaign, following orders from Ben-Gurion and the Jewish Agency, to establish a powerful “lobby” with which to infiltrate every sector of the American body politic to advocate on Israel’s behalf and, in doing so, play a major role in corrupting what little is left of American democracy.

    Finally, your last sentence, that “Anti-Zionism was a seed in dormancy and Zionism was its incentive,” is ludicrous. How could anti-Zionism even been in anyone’s thought were it not for Zionism?

    Before they reduced him to a crawling Uncle Tom, Jesse Jackson once said, “Zionism is a cancer in the soul of Judaism.” You can say it differently but you can’t say it any better.”


  27. Fiorangela says:

    James at 7:29: Indeed, Hillary Clinton is drunk on her own power.

    In an interview some years ago, Milton Friedman commented on Lord Acton’s dictum, “Power corrupts; Absolute power corrupts absolutely.” Friedman noted that his favorite chapter in F A Hayak’s book, “Road to Serfdom,” is the chapter titled —

    “Why the Worst Get on Top.” It’s, in a way, another example of the famous statement of Lord Acton that “power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely.”

    . . . The way the worst rise to the top is that if you’re given power and you have to exercise it, you are driven by that necessity to do things that many people really would object to doing. Only those people who are willing to behave in a public capacity differently than they would behave in their private capacity are ever going to make it to the top.

  28. kooshy says:

    VATICAN CITY – International clothing retailer Benetton pulled a provocative ad featuring Pope Benedict XVI kissing a Muslim cleric on Wednesday after the Vatican threatened legal action to protect the pope’s image.


    Apparently according to western double standards the Pope’s image should be respected and protected but respect and protection for Muslim’s prophet will interfere with westerner’s freedom of speech, can you imagine how that will be reviewed in the 1.5 billion strong Muslim communities around the world, I believe the western societies are playing a very stupid dangerous and loosing double standard game which at some point will make their WWI & II like it just was a walk in a park.

  29. Fiorangela says:

    James, if I recall correctly, Lebanese ardently wished that US would take mandate over Lebanon — ANYONE but the French, but US was too young and uninvolved in world affairs at the time; US did not wish to play a part in governing former Ottoman states.

  30. Photi says:


    I cannot wait for parts II and III.

    I think you have hit the nail on the head concerning the impact of the Israeli propaganda on the conflation of the terms ‘Judaism’ and ‘Israel.’

  31. James Canning says:


    China and Russia are key to keeping good order (or relatively good order) in Korea, as long as current regime remains in power in NK. Surely Clinton and Obama comprehend this fact?

  32. James Canning says:


    In 18th-century England, to be called a Scot was derogatory. So derogatory it was actionable at law. “Scotland” was called “North Britain”.

  33. Fiorangela says:

    Obama lays claim to the Pacific, initiates military basing in Australia to combat Chinese influence.

    “CANBERRA, Australia—President Barack Obama laid out a sweeping vision of a U.S. newly committed to Asia and the Pacific, promising to ramp up American economic and military engagement despite the federal budget problems confronting him back in Washington.

    In his first trip as president to Australia, Mr. Obama said U.S. Marines would be stationed permanently on Australia’s north coast beginning next year, a gesture to Southeast Asian nations looking to U.S. authority to counter China’s influence in the region.

    “The United States is a Pacific power, and we are here to stay,” he said in a Thursday speech to the Australian Parliament. . . .” -Charles Dharapak/Associated Press

    But Hillary Clinton was there first: :http://www.gmanews.tv/story/238174/business/hillary-clinton-declares-americas-pacific-century

    “With the United States facing a multipronged challenge from China, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton declared on Thursday that the 21st century will be “America’s Pacific century” and said the region’s problems require U.S. leadership.

    . . .Clinton used a speech ahead of an Asia-Pacific summit here to dissuade Beijing and others from thinking the United States is ceding its traditional role in the Pacific.

    “There are challenges facing the Asia-Pacific right now that demand America’s leadership, from ensuring freedom of navigation in the South China Sea to countering North Korea’s provocations and proliferation activities to promoting balanced and inclusive economic growth,” she said.”

    Clinton and Obama are undercutting one of Flynt and Hillary Leverett’s strongest arguments: that US should engage with Iran just as Nixon engaged with China.

  34. James Canning says:

    favoritism toward Catholics, was feared by Lloyed-George. France insisted on taking control of Syria (and Lebanon), partly in order to promote Catholic interest. And Christian.

  35. James Canning says:


    A number of British leaders wanted the US to take Mandate for Palestine. Lloyd-George did not want French to control Palestine because he knew that would mean favoratism toward Catholics.

    Sir Mark Sykes thought perhaps the Armenians should have a significant part of what becamse Syria and Iraq. Churchill wondered if the best thing to do with Iraq was to give it back to Turkey.

  36. James Canning says:

    Idiot new senator from Illinois, Mark Kirk, is pushing to bring sanctions against Iran’s central bank. Kirk sucks up more funding from Jewish groups than most people in US Congress. An Aipac stooge to be sure.

  37. Empty says:


    Re; the question about racism charge at Silverstein’s site, if you have already moved on from this topic, please feel free to ignore this post. I thought I’d add a few lines to the discussion.

    I think all too often, people who level the charge of racism against others may not have a full understanding of the concept itself and what conditions must be met for a statement to be construed a racist one. Or, they might be using it as a tactical tool to discredit others without having to engage in an intellectually honest debate or perhaps some other reasons. So, instead of giving a direct answer to your question, I thought I take this opportunity to discuss the analytical tools with which we could actually evaluate whether or not a given “suspect” statement meets the necessary criteria to be labeled in terms of racism. I think this makes it easier to construct statements in ways that are not rooted in racism (covert or overt) and makes it possible to rebut false charges should they be leveled arbitrarily at some statements.

    For the sake clarity and brevity (somewhat), I am going to divide the post into three parts and look at racism through three different lenses: I. an academic (in a non-technical jargon-free mode) lens; I’ll include references should you need to look into them further; II. a global Palestinian-Israel-Jew-Muslim lens; and III. my understanding of Quran’s verses as I interpret them to link to racism (since you might appreciate this angle and might find it useful as well).

    I. Racism (both institutionalized and individual-based), by far, is one of the most widely-studied social phenomena in the United States (and some European countries). You could do a keyword search for “racism” in almost any social sciences, arts and humanities, history, environmental sciences, public health, communication, and public policy databases and retrieve thousands of articles, audio/video recordings, and books on the subject. There is also many interesting articles from the legal angle that deal indirectly with racism through their application in discrimination cases (mostly torts but not entirely).

    As far as the legal aspect is concerned, racism as a causal factor (to inflict harm, distress, etc.) is extremely difficult to argue/prove and usually requires a position of power/authority over persons/groups who might have been the subject of racism. A legal example of this was reported by the Economist last year [See 1] that involved the use of the word “boy” by a white manager at Tyson Foods in Atlanta, GA, to address an African American male (mature) employee who alleged discrimination due to racism as a “cause” to deny promotion:

    The employee, John Hithon, applied for a promotion. The boss, Tom Hatley, instead brought in two white outsiders, saying that the money-losing plant needed new blood. Mr Hithon sued, saying that Mr Hatley’s use of “boy” to him proved racial animus, and was awarded $1.75m. An appeals court overturned the ruling. The federal Supreme Court then sent the case back to trial, saying The speaker’s meaning may depend on various factors including context, tone of voice, local custom and historical usage. The case was then re-tried, and two witnesses (including Mr Hithon) once again testified that Mr Hatley had called each of them “boy”. Mr Hithon again won at the lowest court, but at the appeals level, a three-judge panel reversed the verdict

    If I understood you correctly though, I think your concern is more of a social and ethical one. In terms of written/spoken statements, your statement doesn’t become racist until and unless it’s meeting several criteria: a) context (in which the statement is made); b) intention (of behind making the statement); c) extreme and outrageous behavior (of the person making the statement); d) causation (if that statement is highly likely “to cause” of “has caused” harm to potential victims; e) severe emotional distress; and f) local AND historical usage (of terms that are used).

    So, you would want to answer questions such as these:

    1. What is the context of your statement (e.g., socio-political/academic/personal debate, political speech, to an employee/subordinate, etc.)?

    2. Are you (or the group you might racially represent) in a position of power/authority over the person (e.g., can hire, fire, promote, demote, kick out of a place, refuse service, deny access, etc.)?

    3. What is your intention (incite hate, compassion, suspicion, etc.)?

    4. Is the statement extreme and outrageous?

    5. Does the statement cause (actual & provable) harm to a racially vulnerable group?

    6. Does the statement cause severe emotional distress to a person (of a racially vulnerable group)?

    7. Have the terms you used in your statement been used locally and/or historically as a way to harm a particular racial group? [*Side note: I noticed that Silverstein objected to your statement that implied “Israel” and “Jews” are the same. Putting aside the historical evidence that a lot of resources went into making the two “interchangeable” by both Israelis and the Jews (in various Western countries) for economic, political, and strategic gains, I don’t think he can blame you for being a perfect victim of that propaganda. He needs to direct his anger at the actual source of that perception and not you.]

    The following is an excerpt from a translation by FJ Greene of A. de Benoist’s essay titled, “What is Racism” that I think is worth to read:

    For his part, Christian Delacampagne, who saw the broadening of “racism” as resulting from “the widespread diffusion in Western societies of the technocratic age, of guilt feelings resulting from the various genocides carried out by Westerners since the outset of the 20th century,” today admits that “in certain situations, any type of conflict can take on a racist connotation,” e.g., male/female or labor/management antagonisms. From this perspective, “racism” would mean “going to extremes,” to radicalize hostilities and to encourage dogmatic judgments based on stereotypes and prejudices. This use of “racism” is questionable, and the reasoning behind it specious. At first sight, branding a hostile position as racist could seem to benefit those who use this tactic by heaping on adversaries the disapproval the term “racism” entails. In fact, the result may be the exact opposite. If all aggressive behavior is “racist,” “racism” becomes as “normal” as ordinary feelings of hostility, hatred, aggression — feelings present at all times and in every society. If everyone is racist, no one is racist: dilution leads to trivialization— diluting responsibility is a classical tactic for relieving the guilty of their guilt. Moreover, such a definition of “racism” would give the laws against racism such a scope that they would become unenforceable[2].

    To be continued………

    [1] How racist is “boy”? Online at: ;http://www.economist.com/blogs/johnson/2010/11/racist_language

    [2] A. de Bonois Translation by F.J. Greene. Access online at: ;http://www.alaindebenoist.com/pdf/what_is_racism.pdf

  38. Fiorangela says:

    James Canning wrote:

    “British gov’t did not intend to set up a “Jewish” state. ”

    Right again! Sykes-Picot intended to divide the ‘spoils’ of the Ottoman empire between France and Great Britain. Twice the British gave away the rights to lands to which it had no claim. How do you say Chutzpah in English?

  39. Fiorangela says:

    James Canning, you wrote:

    “But there would not have been enough Jews in Palestine, to defeat the surrounding Arab countries in war, had in not been for the events of Second World War.”


    Which is one of the reasons zionists in Great Britain; specifically, the Focus Group, Chaim Weizman, and Baron Rothschild, among others, put so much pressure on Balfour and later Churchill to involve Great Britain in war against Germany. Jews were content in Germany — most had no desire to migrate to Palestine; zionists like Jabotisnky NEEDED ‘antisemitism’ and flare-ups in Germany to ‘incentivize’ Jews to take their wealth and talents to Palestine. In the aftermath of the Transfer Agreement, Palestine boasted of the strongest economy in the midst of a worldwide depression, a jump-start that helped make Israel financially stable enough to arm itself and beat back rather pathetic Arab resistance to zionist predations in the 1948 Nakba.
    And Germany did not seek war with Great Britain, not in 1914 and not in 1933-40. In fact, Churchill was detached from events between 1933 and 1936, until the Focus Group ‘made it worth his while’ to the tune of $700,000 USD to support the extravagances of Chartwell and his son’s gambling debts — and played upon his many and obvious psychological vulnerabilities to turn him into a war leader.

    The relationship between Balfour and Baron Rothschild was carefully cultivated by Rothschild. In “The House of Rothschild: The World’s Banker, 1849-1999,” author Niall Ferguson quotes “Dorothy Pinto (who later married Edmond’s son James), [who] recalled how ‘as a child I thought Lord Rothschild lived at the Foreign Office, because from my schoolroom window I used to watch his carriage standing outside every afternoon — while in reality of course he was closeted with Arthur Balfour.’ ” (p. 417)

    Balfour was not the sharpest knife in the drawer, but he recognized a win-win when he saw it: Great Britain wanted nothing so much as to keep its empire intact; industrializing Germany threatened that possibility. Palestine served as a way-station, connecting Great Britain to its eastern colonies. Moreover, Great Britain was heavily in debt due to heavy borrowing to finance war in the Crimea; Palestine was ‘collateral’ for a Rothschild bailout of GB’s debt crisis.

  40. BiBiJon says:

    Heck of Job, Amano!

    Lavrov said that the latest report of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) on Iran does not contain anything new. He also said the agency should name the source of its information, which analysts say suggests Iran is attempting to build nuclear weapons.

    From http://en.rian.ru/russia/20111114/168685002.html

  41. pirouz_2 says:

    Perhaps it would be of interest to you learn what the great (!!) Winston Churchill had to say about Plaestine, Palestinians and the jews who were “supposedly” looking for a home land in the Palestinian land. This was Churchill had to say to the Peel commission in 1937 about Palestine and the establishment of Israel:

    “I do not agree that the dog in a manger has the final right to the manger even though he may have lain there for a very long time. I do not admit that right. I do not admit for instance, that a great wrong has been done to the Red Indians of America or the black people of Australia. I do not admit that a wrong has been done to these people by the fact that a stronger race, a higher-grade race, a more worldly wise race to put it that way, has come in and taken their place.”


  42. Photi says:

    *or at least for the survival of our American ideals as they were originally conceived.

  43. Photi says:


    And i agree with you that Americans need to leave our own barbarity behind for our own survival.

  44. pirouz_2 says:

    James Canning says:
    November 16, 2011 at 5:46 pm

    James you said: “There were not enough Jews in Palestine, in 1939, to take control of a “Jewish” state.”

    LOL…that’s the whole point my friend! It wasn’t the “jews”. IT IS NOT AND IT NEVER WAS!! :)

  45. Photi says:

    WTF says:
    November 16, 2011 at 4:57 pm


    If I were to say it again, I would say that Israeli survival depends on the Israelis leaving their barbarity behind, because, as i have been corrected, that is the more correct statement.

    Jews are a fully assimilated and integral part of American society and many other societies as well, their survival does not depend on Israel. That comment of mine (about Jewish survival) was overboard and is simply not true.

  46. James Canning says:


    You might find interesting “Population of Ottoman and Mandate Palestine”


  47. James Canning says:


    Britain fought insurgents in Palestine, Christian, Muslim and Jewish. The Arab “uprising” took many lives. There were not enough Jews in Palestine, in 1939, to take control of a “Jewish” state.

  48. James Canning says:


    And we should bear in mind that, had Turkey not declared war on Great Britain, there would have been no “Balfour declaration”. Britain did not want war with Turkey.

  49. James Canning says:


    Yes, Jews were settling in Palestine, years before the letter of Lord Balfour to Lord Rothschild. But there would not have been enough Jews in Palestine, to defeat the surrounding Arab countries in war, had in not been for the events of Second World War.

    British gov’t did not intend to set up a “Jewish” state. Many Jews settling in Palestine, of course, wanted to set up such a state whether Britain liked it or not.

    By the mid-1930s, the British were considering a partition to set up areas controlled by Jews, and controlled by “Arabs” (Christian and Muslim). Jews were considered Arabs in the 19th C in Palestine, prior to the immigration of numerous European Jews.

  50. James Canning says:


    Iran would like to see Saudi national guard pulled out of Bahrain. This would be a good starting point, but one would want to avoid having it appear to be a condition imposed on the Saudis.

  51. WTF says:


    Regarding your comments on Silverstein’s site, while I believe that your point would be made better by clearly distinguishing between Zionists and Jews in general, the notion that your comment was blatant anti-semitism is ridiculous. Furthermore, whether it is fair or not, Jews ARE generally held morally responsible for Israel’s barbaric treatment of the Palestinians, much like Americans are held morally responsible for the actions of their government. I know that all Jews don’t approve of Israel’s actions; I have Jewish friends that are as critical as I am. Likewise, there are many Americans that despise what the USG does in our name, but that doesn’t change the fact that what American’s proclaim to be our core ideals (life, liberty and justice) stand in stark contrast to America’s actual role in the world.

    Again, this type of argument isn’t going to go far in changing people’s minds (which you seem to desire), but that doesn’t make it inappropriate. To underline my point, the last line of your comment reads:

    ”Jewish survival depends on the Jews making the choice to leave their barbarity to join the Civilized world.”

    I do not interpret that as anti-jew any more that I would interpret it as anti-American if you were to substitute “American” for “Jew”, as in:

    “American survival depends on the Americans making the choice to leave their barbarity to join the Civilized world.”

    I would argue that both of these statements, while not PC, are likely true.

  52. Fiorangela says:

    Photi —

    Bishop Richard Williamson has been called an anti-semite many times, and at great cost. At the conclusion of this conversation, the Interviewer says, “If [what you are saying is not antisemitism, what is?”
    Williamson responds, “If antisemitism is bad, it’s against truth; if something is true, it’s not bad. I’m not interested in the word antisemitism.”

    Interviewer: “But the bishop calls you an antisemite.”

    Williamson: “He can call me a dinosaur, he can call me an idiot; he can call me what he likes. This is not a question of name-calling. This is a question of historical truth. Historical truth goes by evidence and not by emotion.”

    Based on that standard, I would suggest that your comment on Richard Silverstein’s blog should be analyzed, claim by claim, for its truth value, based upon evidence.

  53. Irshad says:

    @James Canning,

    What do you think the saudis can do to improve ties with iran?

  54. Fiorangela says:

    James Canning/pirouz_2 —

    -By 1891, Ahah Ha’am had already written an essay sharply critical of his Jewish brethren who were settling in Palestine, chastising them for their harsh treatment of Arab natives in Palestine.

    -By 1910, Arthur Ruppin had hurriedly built Tel Aviv in the style of a European city
    By that time, at least four groups of (predominantly Eastern) European Jews had been selected for migration to Palestine. :http://www.tau.ac.il/tarbut/tezot/bloom/EtanBloom-PhD-ArthurRuppin.pdf

    “Ruppin’s new sense of urgency meant that “creating [demographic and land] facts”
    was infinitely more important than the quality of the process, thus, for example,
    building Tel Aviv as fast as possible was more important by far than building it properly. Ruppin recognized very well that the founders of Tel Aviv (including
    himself) had no experience of building an urban neighborhood, nor did they have the
    necessary means. To note one example, Ruppin realized, as early as 1910, that the streets of Tel Aviv were much too narrow for a proper city. His attempts to correct this failed in most cases because the buyers of the plots . . . did not want to “waste” their land on public space (Bein 1968 II, 145). Thus they built cheaply, with low standards and no proper planning . . .
    In [Ruppin’s] recommendation to the JNF in support of the founding of Tel Aviv he explained that a Jewish urban settlement would create a market for the agriculture produce of the Jewish agriculture sector, and would also divert the flow of capital from the Arabs of Jaffa*** (who profited from the rent of apartments), into Jewish hands (in: Shavit & Biger 2001, 66). Ruppin explained the attraction of Tel Aviv for immigrants and Jewish capital as being a place where immigrants can live in a “healthy European atmosphere” (in: Shavit & Biger 2001, 24) as opposed to Arab Jaffa. This same policy of separating the Arabs (economically and culturally) from the Jewish cultural space . . .”
    pp. 199-200

    *** from the Arab Perspective: Lawrence of Cyberia offers a photo-enhanced essay on the thriving culture and commercial activities of Arabs in Palestine in the period 1914-1948. The photos show the cultivation of oranges in Jaffa, the mainstay of Palestine —
    “Jaffa was the most advanced city in Palestine, and had approximately 70,000 Palestinian inhabitants. The U.N. assigned Jaffa to Arab Palestine in UNGAR 181 of 29 November 1947. But Jaffa was always going to be vulnerable to Zionist attack as it was an Arab enclave surrounded by Jewish Palestine, and abutted Tel Aviv, which contained the greatest concentration of Jewish population anywhere in Palestine. In the last four months of British rule, contemporary British Palestine Police and British Army records report the following Zionist attacks on the citizens of Jaffa. I have excluded from the list attacks against military targets . . .” :http://lawrenceofcyberia.blogs.com/news/2009/01/a-land-without-a-people.html

    In other words, from as early as 1910, European Jews in Palestine took deliberate steps to destroy Arab commercial activities in Palestine and take them over for the benefit of Jewish immigrants.

    -The Balfour Declaration was signed to Baron Rothschild on Nov 2, 1917.

    The notion that Israel was created as a result of the 20th century wars in Europe simply do not take account of the abundantly documented chronology of events.

  55. pirouz_2 says:

    James Canning says:
    November 16, 2011 at 2:32 pm

    Actually james you are quite wrong, by 1939, Israel had already been de facto established (at the point of the British guns at the cost of the lives of thousands of Palestinians who had been mass murdered by the British)

  56. James Canning says:


    You are quite right to say that one reason some British leaders supported a “homeland” for Jews in Palestine was to encourage them to relocate there from England.

    And, of course, there were the events of the Second World War.

  57. James Canning says:


    Britain did not create Saudi Arabia. Full stop. Period. What on earth gives you the idea Britain created Saudi Arabia?

  58. James Canning says:


    The oil companies obtaining contracts from Iraqi gov’t do so by competitive bidding. Does Exxon no particular good to be based in US. The US squanders gigantic sums in maintaining huge military presence in the Gulf etc. but economic gains for US companies that result, are minimal. China does well with no troops or any military presence. Ditto Russia.

  59. kooshy says:

    James Canning says: November 16, 2011 at 1:16 pm

    Question – “Where do you get your idea that Saudi Arabia “was created by Western colonial powers”?
    Answer – “From the fact the British supplied guns to Ibn Saud, and hoped to have him attack the Ottoman Empire (after Turkey declared war on Great Britain)?”

    (In a cockney tone)
    My dear jolly good fellow “Gavner” James, I thank you for pointing on a correct historic fact in reply to your own question.


  60. James Canning says:


    Britain worked with the Sunnis to set up government of Iraq, partly because the Shia were largely unwilling to cooperate. Another element, of course, was monarchy with a Hashemite as king, who obviously was Sunni.

  61. James Canning says:


    Britain did not want to partition the Indian Empire. Jinnah forced the British to do it.

  62. James Canning says:


    Balfour’s letter to Lord Rothschild (“Balfour declaration”) did not pledge Britain to set up a state for Jews in Palestine.

    Phenomenon of so many Jewish “oligarchs”, and their obvious political power in US, has become more evident in recent decades. Creation of Israel was not seen as a way to make money.

    Would Israel have come into being without Second World War? I very much doubt it.

  63. pirouz_2 says:

    Photi says:
    November 16, 2011 at 10:18 am

    Since you are interested in the cause of peace, I think it might be of interest to you to learn about my perspective about the issue.

    It is not about jews vs. muslims. Many jewish immigrants (in fact I would argue that the majority) did not come this land because they loved this place or thought that they had some sort of divine connection to this land; a lot of them were pushed to come to this land by the Western powers.

    If you look at the history of all lands which were under the British colonial rule, from India and Iraq to Cyprus, you will see that the present Arab-Israeli conflict is not unique AT ALL. It is a very ordinary repitition of the British colonial policy which was applied all over the world: DIVIDE AND RULE. In general British, where ever they went they sowed the seeds of discord between various religious/ethnic groups to destablize the region of conquest and weaken any resistance to their imperialistic ambitions. You can see the same thing in the partition of India, the ethnic conflict between Turks and Greeks in Cyprus, the ethnic unrests in Iraq in the first part of the 20th century, the Iran-Iraq conflicts over Shatt-al-Arab (Arvand rood)… the list goes on and on. Arab-Israeli conflict is only ONE example! And in general their policy was to make a “minority rulled” comletely unstable government, where the ruling elite (which usually was picked up to be an ethnic or religious minority) was maintaining its rule with the complete reliance on the Brits and therefore would be always dependent on the Brits (rings any bell in regards to Israel and its complete and TOTAL dependence on the US hegemony in this region?).

    The story may show slight variations from one region to the next but they all follow the same rule (divide and rule) and show similar characteristics in the nature of their conflicts.

    British did this for a reason, it was to expand the rule of capitalism and to conquer the raw materials and the labour of other regions of the world and then to export the finished products to the very same regions with a hefty profit.

    So in all of their conquests they had as their goal three things: the raw maerial (natural resources) of the conquered regions (which are the necessary condition of producing new commodities), labour market of the conquered regions (labour is the source of profit), and finally -an often neglected but extremely important third goal- to obtain the market of the conquered regions for the sale of their finished goods (ie. realization of their profit).

    The region of the middle east is home to 67% of the proven oil reserves of the whole globe added to an ocean of natural gas. These are two of the MOST important raw materials for any commodity production, furthermore, because of the disproportionate amount of oil and gas which is in this region, anyone who is the hegemon to this region of the world is essentially the hegemon of the whole globe and can dictate its own interests on to any global competitor. From China to Europe and Japan all capitalist countries are utterly DEPENDENT on this region for their energy requirements, therefore if a country rules this region as the hegemon it can dictate its own capitalist classes interests over to all other countries.

    So Photi, the fight is not over this religion against that or this race against that. It is about the rate of return of the capital. End of story.

    I can assure you neither palestinians nor other middle easterns would have any problem if instead of just 5-6 million jews, all 14 million of them were to settle in this land (side by side the arabs) and beat their heads over the wailing wall until their foreheads start to bleed, BUT for as long as the indigineous people are not dispossessed from their home land.

    It is not about a bunch religious fanatic jews and their obssession with a ‘promised land’; it is about creating a colony (= a guard dog, or a big military base) in this region to subdue and enslave the population and rob their natural resources.

    Incidentally you can see the exact same trend from late 15th century onward in North America and the ‘pilgrims’ in search of a promised land who dispossessed all native population from their land by commiting acts of genocide.

  64. pirouz_2 says:

    James Canning says:
    November 16, 2011 at 1:19 pm

    Will you be kind enough to tell me WHY the jewish oligarchs in USA would want to create a country in the middle of no where (which happens to be a region with 67% of the global oil reserves) and then force/promote immgiration into that land?
    I mean obviously the brave British fought to the their last standing man and fought heroically to prevent Israel from happening and obviously zionists by the power of gun made the utterly helpless british make the Balfour declaration, but why? why spend all this money and energy to go to the middle of no where? Why would the jewish oligarchs in USA want to spend so much of their capital in investing in Israel? What is their “profit”? When has any one ever seen that a capitalist makes an investment for anything other than a hefty rate of return?

  65. James Canning says:


    Iranian FM, Salehi, said last month Iran hoped to be producing fuel plates for TRR within four or five months. And that the nuclear scientist murdered by Israel last year, Majid Shahriari, had been in charge of the programme to make the plates. Iran had 70 kg of 20% on hand as of late last month.


  66. James Canning says:


    “Tehran Research Reactor Fuel Requirements” indicates 1,200 kg 3.5% would produce sufficient 20% U to run TRR for 6-13 years.


  67. James Canning says:


    I take it you think Iran acted wisely in offering to cease production of 20% U. Part of the offer was to buy needed supplies from the US or another country.

    I’ll see if I can find the latest figures for what amounts are needed to produce the rods or plates, and for what number of years.

    I think Iran should do what it can to maintain good relations with Saudi Arabia. This entails ceasing production of the 20% U, or, perhaps, allowing it to be monitored as suggested by the recommendatons from that recent conference at Arundel House linked by FYI.

  68. James Canning says:


    And one might add, in comments to Photi, that much of the best analysis and criticism of Israel and insane Greater Israel scheme, is provided by Jews.

    I think the key fact, and fact it is, is simply that Israel greatly injures the American people by its delusional effort to prevent viable Palestine from coming into existence. And Israel’s delusional scheme is promoted ceaselessly by the US.

  69. James Canning says:


    Israel in effect virtually controls the government of the US, thanks to overweening power of oligarchic Jews in the US (allied with foolish Christian Zionists).

  70. James Canning says:


    Where do you get your idea that Saudi Arabia “was created by Western colonial powers”? From the fact the British supplied guns to Ibn Saud, and hoped to have him attack the Ottoman Empire (after Turkey declared war on Great Britain)?

    You appear to forget that the British in the 1930s tried to stop further Jewish immigration into Palestine. And Britain foughta guerilla war with Jews in Palestine after the Second World War.

  71. James Canning says:


    Thanks. I was aware of shift in ownership and of course one notices some of the nuances that may result. Guardian still much better than Americaan newspapers, re: Middle East, Israel/Palestine, etc.

  72. James Canning says:

    Some background etc of Russian contract to build nuclear power plant in Turkey:


  73. Rob says:

    fiorangela: How do you know they are greens? The greens in Iran doesnt want to overthrow the islamic republic.

  74. Photi says:

    UU, Sakineh, pirouz_2 and Eric,

    I appreciate all your comments. I am off to work now (al-hamdulillah) so I hope to return to this later tonight. For what it is worth, I am from a German-American ancestry who grew up in the 1980s watching Holocaust documentaries on channels like HBO and Cinimax and through VHS. My distaste for injustice instilled by watching those sorts of documentaries is the same distaste for injustice with which i look at the conflict in Palestine. I am admittedly sensitive to the label of anti-semitism. I have added a response at Silverstein’s blog to FreeMan which i hope was conciliatory without sacrificing my ideals. We are too many enemies in the world.

  75. Rehmat says:

    Eric A. Brill – That’s another Israel Hasbara’s “smoking Gun”. Tehran has long offered to share its scientific achievements with its Muslim and non-Muslim countries. Only some idiots will believe this Turkey-Iranian crap – knowing that Iran itself has not achieved nuclear technology to produce and test a nuclear device. As a nuclear power-generating engineer myself – even if Tehran produces 100 nuclear bombs, it cannot join the “nuclear club” until it test its nuclear device.

    Pakistan is the only Muslim country which has produced and tested its nuclear device. Therefore, Ankara should seek Islamabad’s help if it wants to join the “nuclear club”. But keep in mind – Ankara already has over 87 nuclear bombs at US military base in Turkey.

    In July 2011 – the Zionist mafia had told the world that Pakistan is helping Saudi Arabia to become a nuclear power.


  76. Rehmat says:

    The leaders of World Zionist movement and their Christian collaborators have always considered Muslim unity (Ummah) as the greatest threat to their plan of world domination as mentioned in the notorious The Protocols of Zion.

    On November 11, 2011, the Press TV published Mark Glenn’s column entitled Islamic Solidarity: The bomb Israel fears. It’s a good read to find out who are the real terrorists and criminals behind the continuous wars against Muslim countries around the Globe. However, I don’t agree with Mark Glenn for calling Israel a “Jewish State”. In fact, the idea of a homeland for the persecuted European Jews outside Europe was conceived by atheist Jewish leaders of the World Zionist movement as a Communist/Socialist state. Furthermore, US President Harry Truman, rejected David Ben Gurion’s calling the Zionist entity as “Jewish State” on May 14, 1948 (see the proof on top left of this post).

    I know Mark Glenn for years. He is an American Catholic writer, blogger, author and radio talk show host. He was kind enough to invite me to his talk show a few months ago which for some personal reason I declined. Mark has dedicated his life to bring Christians and Muslims closer to fight their common enemy, the Zionist mafia.

    Mark in his somewhat lengthy column wrote:

    The ultimate drama queen-Lady Gaga (Israel) with nukes, banks, TV networks, and a chorus line of presidents, prime ministers, popes, priests, preachers, pundits and professors on the payola sheet In a verbal portrait-self-obsessed, self-absorbed, unplugged, pathologically-narcissistic and unable to care about anything except the latest noise buzzing ’round her like so many subatomic particles locked in dysfunctional orbit around the nucleus of some deadly radioactive element named J-Tonium.

    Jewish interests wanted Iraq destroyed, and it was. Dittoes with Afghanistan, Libya, and on and on and on. Tens of millions of innocent lives destroyed because it was in the interests of the Jewish state and her people to see it done. Like some crime boss snapping his fingers and people instantly dropping dead like flies in various places, when La Kosher Nostra has spoken it’s a done deal and God help anyone who gets in the way.

    Simple logic tells us that there was (is) nothing of any benefit to the various surrogate nations of the West engaging in this program of Mutually Assured Destruction with the Islamic world. The only beneficiary collecting on the life insurance policies of the deceased will be the Jewish state and her people, a fact you can take to the bank.

    And now, without so much as even an ounce of regret or remorse for the apocalyptic trouble she’s caused the world vis-à-vis Iraq, Afghanistan. Libya, et al, Lady Gaga is again in motion, twirling and whirling like some maniacal, Judaic dervish in conjuring up yet another magic spell for her mostly-Christian audience of war-porn addicts. Sometimes singing, sometimes shrieking, sometimes clawing her face, gouging her eyes and pulling her hair, the witch doctor cometh again, hissing and hexing against Iran, and all because our would-be beauty queen is once again prevented from grabbing the gold at that aforementioned contest for world domination.

    Like the many personality layers not atypical with paranoid schizophrenics, so too are diverse and perplexing the reasons for Israel wanting Iran destroyed.


  77. Sakineh Bagoom says:

    More and more this has to do with the conflation of the terms anti-Semitism and anti-Zionism.
    The term anti-Semitism was created to show suspicion of, hatred toward, or discrimination against Jews for reasons connected to their Jewish heritage. This holds, even though Palestinians and other Arab speakers of Semitic languages are also Semites by definition.
    The term anti-Zionism however is opposition to Zionistic views or opposition to the state of Israel and its policies, be it moral, political, or religious point of view.
    Nowadays one cannot criticize the state of Israel and its policies and not be called anti-Semite, which is the crux of the issue at hand.
    Yes, occupation is morally bankrupt! Yes, subjugation of a whole people is morally despicable! Yes, slow drip genocide of whole people is abhorable! Yes, there are many other things that don’t obtain in the Zionist entity, but if you bring attention to them you are labeled a convenient label to end all debate. Shut up and put up.
    So, in the future, you need to be careful as to separate the people/religion from the states and its policies when you wade in this debate.

  78. hans says:

    James Canning re November 14 2011 at 2:22 pm

    Britain’s armed forces are stepping up their contingency planning for potential military action against Iran amid mounting concern about Tehran’s nuclear enrichment programme, the Guardian has learned.

    Guardian is a Zionist rag, it may have been in the past impartial with their reporting however the ownership has now changed and the shareholders are Zionist.

    Meet Sir Ronald Cohen (Wikipedia entry), chairman of private equity firm Apax (sounds like?) which owns 49.9% of Trader Media, having been sold this holding by Guardian Media Group (now holding 51.1%) during a cash-raising exercise. GMG received a £50m half share of a Trader “special” (loan funded) dividend in August. And I think we can date the Guardian’s sensitivity on antisemitic tropes from then.

  79. kooshy says:

    Very interesting interview


    David Albright Questioned on Credentials, Iran Weapons Claims, Record on Israeli Nuclear Weapons — Threatens Stakeout

  80. kooshy says:

    Eric / Pirouz/UU

    On a larger scale if the western imperialist headed by this country out of lacking any remaining good options can eventually trigger a religious war between the Shih and Sunnis, the current fight between the Palestinians and Israelis would be walk in the park, which that is the war we all should worry not to be ever imposed on the region.

  81. kooshy says:

    Eric A. Brill says:
    November 16, 2011 at 12:46 am

    Unknown Unknowns says:
    November 16, 2011 at 12:54 am

    I think it’s important to understand that the Palestinian’s fight for liberation of their homeland, which currently is occupied by a western colonial design in form of a Jewish state doesn’t equates to fighting against Jewish religion or what you called world Jewry, no educated Muslim has ever claimed that, frankly that’s a wrong way to support the Palestinian, and I bet most Palestinian’s will distance themselves from that kind of support.

    On the other hand both Israel and Saudi Arabia have been created by western colonial powers (after the western wars of I & II) to which none is or has yet become a nation state, therefore the purpose of their formation was not to safe guard a particular form of religion but rather naturally the religion was used as a tool to safeguard the west against a possible regional unity of kind against colonialism. Which so far has worked, therefore Israel in reality has as much respect for the Jewish religion as Saudis have for the Muslim. Basically they both give a bad name to their supposed state religions. But they both are rather doing their job as originally designed.

    Pirouz Jan

    I just noticed your reply and I agree that’s what I meant

  82. pirouz_2 says:

    kooshy says:
    November 16, 2011 at 12:27 am


    Just to set the record straight, I agree with EVERYTHING you say in that comment with perhaps one minor exception: I dont see whats going on as the responsibility of Israel’s. But rather see the monsterosity called “Israel” as the responsibility of the British/US imperialism. I say “perhaps” in bold font because your analogy of Israel to S. Arabia implies that probably you agree with me that Israel is an imperialistic tool and not a major player in itself.

  83. Photi,

    I and many thousands or millions of other people agree that Israeli government is mistreating the Palestinians. But I don’t think it helps the Palestinians at all for you to attack Jews in what you write. You just come across as someone who hates Jews, not someone who’s disgusted with the Israeli government for mistreating Palestinians. If the latter is what you really care about, why not learn to keep the distinction clear when you write about what you really care about? Your readers are much more likely to listen – unless, of course, your target audience is nothing beyond people who just hate Jews because they’re Jews. If that’s your audience, this site is probably not the right place for you (and apparently the other site you mentioned wasn’t either).

    Maybe that’s the first question you should consider: Who is your audience? Do you really want to change minds about the Israeli government’s treatment of Palestinians? Or do you want to persuade people to hate Jews? You may think that the two objectives go hand in hand, but most readers won’t agree. Most readers think quite the opposite: You lose credibility on the first issue – the Israeli government’s mistreatment of the Palestinians – when you start making bitter and sweeping complaints about Jews as Jews.

    For what it’s worth, Photi. Your heart may be in the right place – hard to tell – but your pen and typing fingers certainly are not.

  84. Unknown Unknowns says:


    I disagree with Eric: you were, perhaps, over the top of politically correct criteria as defined by Left Coast Liberalism, but if you ask me, you were just fine. And Kooshy’s analogy of Saudi Arabia does not obtain either. I will give you my reasons for both these assertions as soon as I can, but meanwhile, in my humbling opinion, you should not use the word anti-Semitic for what you really mean, which is anti-Jewish. Of course you are not anti-Semitic. That’s ridiculous: your Prophet Muhammad, with whom be peace, is a Semite. How on earth can you be an anti-Semite? It’s just another sick way that the English language has been twisted.

  85. pirouz_2 says:

    We ALL add to peace effort by exchanging ideas and LEARNING . Not participating is not the answer, perpetual learning and continuous contribution is the answer.

  86. Kooshy,

    To be honest, I’m never even sure what someone means by “World Jewry,” and I have very little interest in finding out — roughly the same level of interest I have in learning more about what the “Illuminati” are up to.

    I don’t have any trouble distinguishing “Israel” – a state – from “Jews” – a religious group. I very much dislike the way Israel treats the Palestinians, but there are many thousands of Jews who feel exactly the same way.

  87. Photi says:

    Eric, thank you for your opinion.

    How then to bring attention to the occupation? People keep saying occupation and then it becomes another household word. It just keeps going and going without a shred of effort on the part of the Israelis towards Palestinian appeasement. The various sides are so far apart from each other and more war only adds to that. Nobody agrees on what reality is. At any rate if i cannot add to peace effort i should not participate.

  88. James,

    I’m responding here to your two recent replies (quoted below) to a recent question I posed to you.


There seems no disputing that Iran has enough 20% U on hand to produce needed fuel rods (assuming those rods can be successfully produced or are being produced already), for several years.
The Gulf monarchies are alarmed by Iran’s producing much more 20% U than is needed for the TRR. So, they ask, and press to William Hague: what is purpose of the extra 20% U?
Do you think Iran was wise to offer to cease production of 20% U?


    “My understanding is that there in effect was a conspiracy, among some of the warmongering neocons … to block Iran’s IAEA application to re-fuel the TRR, in hopes Iran would then proceed to enrich to 20%, and that this enriching to 20% could be trumpeted as clear evidence of a decision to go forward with building nuclear weapons. My understanding is bolstered by the fact the neocons…have not encouraged Obama to respond to the Iranian offer to cease production of the 20% U.”


    As I wrote earlier on this subject, I see no point in Iran provoking the US or anyone else. As I also wrote earlier, though, I’ve yet to be persuaded that that is what Iran is doing. I don’t know how you conclude that “there seems no disputing” that Iran’s current level of 20% uranium production is excessive. Two years ago, there were rumors that it would soon run out, and it was thereupon jerked around by the US and other Western countries for about a year. It finally did what seemed to me at the time – and still does – to be its only practical choice: make the stuff itself. And even now, once again, it’s offering to stop if outside countries will just agree to provide a reliable supply. Whatever is wrong with that escapes me at the moment.

    If Iran is really producing vastly excessive amounts, just to force the hand of the West, as you more or less say, then I don’t agree Iran should do that. But I’d hesitate very long before reaching that conclusion. Given Iran’s recent inability to get any cooperation at all from the outside world on this 20% uranium issue, I’m inclined to give it the benefit of a large doubt when it comes to determining how big a reserve is really adequate under the circumstances.

    With these observations in mind, are you nonetheless persuaded that Iran is producing much more 20% uranium than it really needs?

  89. kooshy says:

    Photi- In my opinion Israel feels as responsible to the Jews as Saudis do for the Muslims none has anything to do with their claimed religion, but both these entities are formulation of the modern western colonialism, so Eric is right you comments were way over the board making the Jews responsible for Israel’s colonial responsibilities.

  90. pirouz_2 says:


    I have a question for you. Apparently Photi has said: “If Israel is not a product of World Jewry, then what is?”.

    Do you agree or disagree with the above statement? Personally I DISAGREE with that statement completely, but I am just curious about your take on the issue. Whose product is Israel?

  91. Photi,

    No question in my mind: you were over the top. So clearly so that I’m surprised you felt the need to ask for other opinions.

  92. Photi says:

    The only way it is not genocide is if you deny the national identity of the Palestinians.

  93. Photi says:

    The incendiary word being “genocide” of course. But isn’t that what the occupation is?

  94. Photi says:


    Yes, those are the comments. There is a commenter there named Daniel who said i was being over the top. If i was, then i just need to back off.

  95. Photi says:
    November 15, 2011 at 11:16 pm


    I just checked out the blog you mentioned. I just want to be sure what posts you’re asking about. I saw just 2. I’ve quoted the first below, along with the only relevant line from the second. Is this what you’re asking our opinion about?


    “Of all the people who should have empathy for Palestine, Israel and her citizens have become a despicable contradiction. God chose the Jews to be a Nur for humanity and instead you chose for yourselves to become an open pit of darkness. Has not God warned before that He will eventually take his retribution? Whose definition of “Justice” could possibly support the genocidal occupation of Palestine? Because that is what the occupation is – genocide – and it is time all you Zionists cast away your morbid schizophrenia and wake up to reality. You will not win a war against a billion Muslims. Are you such arrogant bastards that you cannot see this? Jewish survival depends on the Jews making the choice to leave their barbarity to join the Civilized world. Stand down for peace.”

    “If Israel is not a product of World Jewry, then what is?”


  96. Photi says:

    To the folks here at RFI,

    There are many people on this board whose opinions I respect (eg, Fiorangela, Unknown Unknowns, Humanist, Empty, Canning, Brill, Hack, Bagoom and too many more to name.). If any of you would like to review a comment exchange I had with Richard Silverstein on his blog (link to comment below) I would very much appreciate it.

    I consider myself a sincere person and do not want war. My comments were intended as one instance of my humble and personal contribution to the anti-war movement.

    Was I being anti-semitic in this exchange at Silverstein’s blog? If i was, i do sincerely want to know so that I may revise my thinking. If he is just being a control-freak, then i am quite alright not going to his blog. Anyway, the link is below for anyone who wants to weigh in. I posted there as David Nelson as that is my real name.

    I also want to say clearly here that I hope to see peace between the Muslims and Jews. I was not trying to make things worse there nor was i being a troll.


  97. Persian Gulf says:

    عید غدیر مبارک!

  98. kooshy says:

    A sobering article that should be circulated around to all Iranians

    Nuclear Pots Call Iranian Kettle Black

    By Eric Margolis


  99. Fiorangela says:

    Trita Parsi – Failure to engage diplomatically risks conflict

    “First, for the better part of the past 25 years, Washington has imposed sanctions not because the political establishment has been convinced of the utility of this approach, but because of the strength of the domestic political forces pushing for punitive measures. This strength has created a domestic political landscape in the US, where sanctions carry the lowest political risk. Consequently, supporting sanctions is politically the easy thing to do. Supporting diplomacy, in comparison, carries significant domestic political risk and yields – and, even, if successful – limited political benefit. It simply takes far more political courage, will and capital to pursue negotiations with Tehran than to impose sanctions on the Iranians. . . .”

  100. Fiorangela says:

    James Canning re November 14 2011 at 2:22 pm

    Britain’s armed forces are stepping up their contingency planning for potential military action against Iran amid mounting concern about Tehran’s nuclear enrichment programme, the Guardian has learned.

    The Ministry of Defence believes the US may decide to fast-forward plans for targeted missile strikes at some key Iranian facilities. British officials say that if Washington presses ahead it will seek, and receive, UK military help for any mission, despite some deep reservations within the coalition government.”

  101. pirouz_2 says:

    kooshy says:
    November 15, 2011 at 5:11 pm

    Thanks for the information Kooshy. Much appreciated.

  102. Fiorangela says:

    Iranian Greens in Germany comment on IAEA report and reactions to it:


    1. Iran should not have nuclear weapons
    2. No state in the region should have nuclear weapons
    3. They are “blind in one eye” who fail to respond to Israel’s nuclear weapons with as much intensity as Iran’s (non-) weapons
    4. Nuclear free region requires that Israel’s nuclear weapons be contained, controlled, removed, etc.

  103. James Canning says:


    It was entirely to be expected that powerful Jews would oblige Sarkozy and Obama to kiss Netanyahu’s backside. Even if they would prefer to kick it good and hard.

  104. James Canning says:

    Pat Buchanan equates the Republican candidates for president with delusional warmongers, in “Return of the War Party?”:


  105. James Canning says:


    Rice had even less strategic thinking ability, and sense of history, than the moron in the White House (George W. Bush). Rice has been a stooge of the Israeli gov’t.

  106. James Canning says:


    No deal with Iran was possible, with the arse-kissing, astoundingly incompetent Condoleezza Rice serving as Secretary of State. In December 2006, Spiegel reported (from Washington Post) that “Rice said she did not want to trade away Lebanese sovereignty to Syria, or allow Iran to obtain a nuclear weapon, as a price for peace in Iraq.”

    “US won’t talk to Iran and Syria, Rice says”.


  107. James Canning says:

    Daniel Larison has some interesting comments about Mitt Romney and the Republican foreign policy debate this past Saturday. Those thinking Romney is dangerous, and possibly an idiot regarding the Middle East, will not change their opinion from reading this aricle.

    Romney, at the debate: “Look, one thing we can know–and this that is we reelect Barack Obama, Iran will have a nuclear weapon. And if we elect Mitt Romney, if you’d like me as the next president, they will not have a nuclear weapons.”


  108. James Canning says:


    equation no longer obtains.

  109. James Canning says:


    After Kennedy was assassinated, Johnson was more under the influence of the Jewish or Israel lobby and this situation has not changed much since then. Rising power and wealth of Jews in American is part of explanation. But Jimmy Carter did force Israel out of the Sinai, and perhaps if Carter had won in 1980 he could have completed the job by getting Israel out of the West Bank and Golan Heights (and of course Gaza).

    Another factor after 1967 Arab-Israel war is that some strategic thinkers in the US saw Israel as a useful ally in confronting the Soviet Union. This element of the e

  110. James Canning says:


    It is more than pot calling kettle black, if in fact Iran is not seeking nukes. Which must be the case unless there is a scheme in Iran to have the Khamenei fatwa ignored (that prohibits nuclear weapons).

  111. James Canning says:


    The US had decades of hostility toward China, when finally in 1972 Nixon had the sense to “get real” about dealing with China to mutual benefit. Quick change could happen with US too. Though fanatical “supporters” of Israel right or wrong will of course try to block any improvement in US-Iran relations. Because they want the insane Greater Israel scheme to proceed.

    I get the feeling you think it somehow demeaning that American hostility toward Iran owes far more to delusional Israeli schemes than it does to realpolitic.

  112. kooshy says:

    Pirouz_2 says:

    November 15, 2011 at 3:36 pm

    Arak heavy water production plant is not covered unless Iran ratifies the AP, Arak’s nuclear reactor will be covered once it nears to introduce fuel.

    “Intermittently, Iran has allowed the IAEA access to the IR-40 reactor at Arak. In recent years, Iran has justified its refusal to grant the Agency full access to the IR-40 reactor by saying that “since the IR-40 was not in a situation to receive nuclear material, no design-inventory-verification was required”

  113. James Canning says:


    China has sharply criticised the US for squandering so much money on the American military. China does not benefit from American stupidity.

  114. James Canning says:


    I fail to see why China or Russia is pleased to see the US “pinned down in the Gulf” (assuming arguendo that this is the situation that obtains)?

  115. Pirouz_2 says:

    I understand that the latest IAEA report complains that Iran has prevented IAEA inspectors from inspecting (collecting samples from?) Arak heavy water reactor.

    Recently I heard that Arak is not covered by SA, is this correct? Can IAEA complain about being prevented from inspecting Arak?

  116. fyi says:

    James Canning says: November 15, 2011 at 2:18 pm

    My opinion is that the time for implementing those specific policy recommendations is past.

    There was a road not taken in 2007 and that made all the difference in the world.

    Why would Russia and China help diffuse the Iranian nuclear case when – by keeping active – they maintain leverage with EU-US Axis, with the Iranians, with Arabs, and – all the while – keep US pinned down in the Persian Gulf?

    How could Americans, whose state of hostility to Iran is at the same level as the Iranian hostility level to us was in 1980, be persuaded to back-track from a dead end policy for which they have spent a lot of resources?

    And hwo could EU states be persuaded to break with US when all the NATO pertensions to global power projection rests with the capbilities of the United States?

    And how could Iranians – after a decade of military threats by US (war was areal possibility in 2006), Israel, and EU, after the Stuxnet, economic and financial war against their country, and the nuclear explosions of Pakistan and India, be persuaded to accept any restrictions on their sovereign rights?

    There has been too much water under the proverbial bridge as they say.

    Expect the confrontation to continue into the next decade as UNSC and secondary sanctions erode and Iranians further alter their society to meet the challenges of that confrontation.

    This is another form of war.

    Iranians are ready for a long one, the Axis Powers (and India) expected a short one, and Chinese and Russians are winners either way.

  117. Kathleen says:

    James Canning thanks for that link to the Margolis article

    “What’s so crazy about all this is that Israel has a very large arsenal of nuclear and bio-warfare weapons while Iran remains under UN nuclear inspection.

    The big nuclear powers – the U.S., Russia, China, Britain, France – are in violation of the 1995 UN nuclear non-proliferation treaty that mandated eliminating all nuclear weapons within five years. Talk about the nuclear pots calling the Iranian kettle black.”

  118. Kathleen says:

    Would Iran feel less threatened if Israel signed the NPT? The very agreement that Israel demands their neighbors abide by?

    Why is it that the less President to really pressure Israel to play by the rules in regard to their undeclared nuclear program was President Kennedy?

    No need to wonder why so many nations in the region feel threatened by Israel’s massive stockpiles of undeclared nuclear, biological and chemical weapons.
    Israel’s nuclear capabilities and threat

  119. James Canning says:


    British newspapers did the public a great service by carefully pointing out the specific very rich Jews who were funding the activities of Werrity, in effort to manipulate British defence policy to benefit Israel – – even if this did not benefit the UK. Photos. Details of business connections. Other relationships. The kind of reports that are suppressed in almost all American newspapers.

  120. James Canning says:


    What is your opinion on the specific policy recommendations put forward at the conference at Arundel House you linked? Regarding how best to resolve Iranian nuclear dispute.

  121. James Canning says:


    I think better relations between the US and Iran are possible, provided a great deal of effort is put into exposing the global conspiracy by fanatical Jews (and other supporters of Israel right or wrong) to do all possible to injure Iran, in order to facilitate continuing growth of illegal colonies of Jews in the West Bank.

    Too few people are aware of extent of the global conspiracy to set up illegal wars so that fantatical Jews in the West Bank can further oppress Christians and Muslims.

    Iran should try to achieve best relations possible with Saudi Arabia, in interests of the Palestinians.

    Hostility toward Iran is largely a scam, and one of the larger scams in recent history of the world.

  122. fyi says:

    James Canning says: November 15, 2011 at 1:17 pm

    Sensible but will not be acted upon.

    The US ascendancy will not be eroded for the next 3 or 4 decades.

    Let us look at this from point of view of Bayesian statistics.

    There has been 33 years since the start of Iranian-US enmity.

    I think we could agree that we are not at the beginnings of this enmity; with, say 90% confidence level.

    I think we could agree that we are not at the end of this enmity; with say 90% confidence level.

    We are somewhere in the middle of this period of enmity.

    If we take a conservative estimate and assume that 40% of the enmity period has passed, then we may conclude that the remainder of period of enmity between Iran and US is 55 years.

    Note that this 55 years period falls within the anticipated period for the passing of the so-called unilateral moment of US power.

  123. fyi says:

    nahid says: November 15, 2011 at 1:14 pm

    Thank you for your kind words.

    I do not yet see the collapse of the Ba’athist state in Syria.

    Nor do I see a concerted effort by Turkey to bring her down.

    EU states are trying to choke her finances, just like Iran (in 1950), Chile (1973), Yugoslavia, Iraq, and Iran.

    I do not think it will work because there is always buyer for oil in the World; oil from Syria will not be an exception. So, Syrians will recover from that EU sanction.

    I cannot gauge the internal bakance of political forces in Syria.

    But I will try a “Thought Experiment”; let us assume the Ba’athis state of the Alawite is overthrown.

    The successor state in Syria will not abandon its strategic relationship with Iran – even if it be a Sunni fundamentalist one – since the disposition of Golan and Jerusalem (as a Muslim City) still would be an issue.


  124. Clint says:


    could you publish your reaction to Dan Joyner’s article e.g. on your website or as an article?

  125. James Canning says:


    Transitional gov’t in Libya has made clear all prior energy contracts, by Gaddafi gov’t, will be honoured. And no country is being excluded from future oil and gas contracts.

  126. James Canning says:

    Eric Margolis has interesting comments today (“Nuclear Hysteria on Iran”):


    Margolis says (regarding so-called “plot” to kill Saudi ambassador) that the FBI may have taken a member of the MEK as being part of Iranian gov’t.

  127. James Canning says:


    A key fact about current situation in Syria is the government’s serious cash-flow crisis and the apparent unwillingness of Iran to ameliorate it significantly.

    Syria’s oil storage facilities are full, so production of oil has been cut back.

  128. James Canning says:


    The policy recommendations from the conference at Arundel House you linked seems to set out the best way forward, as to how to resolve the nuclear dispute.

  129. nahid says:

    Dear fyi

    Thanks for respond. I was wondering about Syria and effect of turmole there on Iran. You had said that Asad manageed the oppositionir and he is mopping out. would you please tell me what is going on there and effect on Iran, as always greatly thankfull

  130. James Canning says:


    thanks for the link. And Lord Lamont made an important point: “In Cuba, the regime would have fallen long ago if there had not been a sanctions regime.” There is little doubt that foolish US embargo etc against Cuba helped to keep the gov’t in power and delay or prevent economic reforms. So people of Cuba were kept in poverty, while foolish self-righteous American politicians cpmngratulated themselves on being tough on Communism.

  131. James Canning says:


    Did you say whether you think it was a good idea for Iran to have offered to cease production of 20% U?

  132. James Canning says:


    What leads you to think Chinese oil companies will not be allowed to engage in oil production etc in Libya?

    For that matter, why are the Chinese not buying the oil Syria has been unable to put into the market?

  133. fyi says:

    Mashayar says: November 15, 2011 at 5:30 am

    Thank you.

    Quite right!

    Iran must continue on the current path; there is no alternative, just like there was not at Khoramshahr or at Dunkirk.

  134. Arnold,

    More on Dan Joyner’s article on the recent IAEA report. I actually commented on it. See:

    Eric A. Brill says:
    November 13, 2011 at 2:21 am

    I’m glad you mentioned it because I used it as a basis for a rather lengthy analysis of an important but nearly always overlooked point: the IAEA’s rationale for arguing that it properly may ask questions about Iran’s “alleged studies” because those answers are necessary if the IAEA is to perform its “duty” to ascertain whether Iran has undeclared nuclear material. As I argue there, the IAEA’s only “duty” is to TRY to ascertain whether Iran has undeclared nuclear material, based on the information that Iran (or any other country) is required to provide, but that the IAEA simply may reach the conclusion that it cannot make this determination one way or the other on the basis of that required information.

    The IAEA believes that its proper course at that point is simply to keep asking for more and more information, regardless of whether a country’s SA requires it, until the IAEA believes it knows enough to ascertain that the country has no undeclared nuclear material. As I argue, a proper reading of the SA (and other documents, such as the NPT and the IAEA Statute) leads to a difference conclusion: The IAEA must simply declare that it can’t figure it out one way or the other (just as it has effectively declared over the years for many countries) and, if and only if it also finds that the country has breached its SA (NOT merely that the country has declined to provide the additional information the IAEA has demanded), the IAEA may report this fact to the UN Security Council. The IAEA has taken the latter step only once, in February 2006 (setting aside the running battle over new Code 3.1, which hasn’t prompted a formal IAEA “referral” based solely on that alleged shortcoming). The UNSC then may, if it finds it appropriate, determine that Iran’s nuclear program constitutes a “threat to the peace, breach of the peace or act of aggression” under Article 39 of the UN Charter, in which case the UNSC may take various punitive actions under Articles 40-42 of the UN Charter.

    Or, of course, the UNSC can do what it actually did: NOT find that Iran’s nuclear program is a “threat to the peace [etc.],” but take punitive action against it anyway.

    My arguments on this in the earlier post are well worth close reading by you and others who are very well versed on this subject. I think it’s important to understand the IAEA’s shaky (non-existent, in my view) basis for asking questions about Iran’s “alleged studies.” As you know, I, unlike you, don’t believe Iran should rely on this clear legal basis for refusing to cooperate further with the IAEA (on the Additional Protocol and new Code 3.1, for example), but you and I agree wholeheartedly, as does Dan Joyner (based on his most recent piece) that Iran has a clear legal right to behave as you recommend it should.

    My earlier post was a very long one, but I hope that you and others who follow this closely will take a careful look at it and give me your thoughts on the points raised above.

  135. hans says:

    Want to watch absolute nonsense from the Green Movement of Iran and how they inspire the OWS see OWS GLOBAL REVOLUTIONS: Iranian Green Movement

    The Ninth Wave has finished and all the jigsaw are now in place as expected. The question who will win the the next chess move in Iran, Ali Khamenei and his religious appeasers (including Ali Akbar Salehi)who will let Syria down or factions of the government who back Syria fully. I say if you have bigots you will support bigots!

  136. BiBiJon says:

    0.4 cents (20% of my 2 cents)

    Apologies if the following is obvious to all, but just in case …

    Volunteer a cap? Volunteer this!

    Iran, way back when, had proposed a voluntary cap on enrichment, cap on the amount of LEU in storage, etc. Like all other Iranian proposals for sensible, verifiable objective guarantees for non diversion of nuclear materials for nefarious ends, the ‘cap’ proposal was summarily dismissed.

    Are you sure the compromise offer is buried deep enough?

    Then there was a routine request to IAEA to facilitate the purchase of fuel for TRR. Had this gone through, it would have resurrected the ‘cap’ idea and could have been used as precedence that Iran can reliably source fuel from outside providers, and can therefore cap enrichment to a ‘pilot programme’ which has the latent potential for ramping up in case of (embargo) emergencies, but which allows even Israelis to get a good night’s sleep.

    Well folks decided there’s no room for good ideas, precedents, or any other such niceties.

    Use a disadvantage to your best advantage
    When Iran’s attempt at buying fuel for TRR was rebuffed, and precisely when folks felt Iran was cornered, and to boot, her technical/innovative prowess could be
    maligned, Iran decided to get itself out of the (imposed) corner by enriching to 20%.

    Pronouncements of “Iran’s provocative higher level enrichment” must have convinced Iran she had stumbled on a bargaining chip not to be trifled with.

    Ready to cash in?

    Then comes the offer to cease 20% enrichment if we all go back to the original idea of fuel supply/confidence building/voluntary caps. The response, predictably, was “not that again?”

    Can there be a winner when the contestants are running backwards?

    Yes! Everyone wins! Iran won because yet another compromise offer was rejected by an alternate side of the same mouth that regarded 20% enrichment as soooooooooooo provocative.

    The other folks won by making life that much harder for Iranians.

    Win, win, and win!

  137. Irshad says:

    Kenya signs a security agreement with Isreal:


    This follows from: South Sudan ceding from Sudan in the Summer, then later Ohbummer sending 100 military “trainers” to Uganda to help deal with the LRA and now this.

    The scramble for East Africa has started! This time, its after (south )Sudanese oil and a new market for Isreal.

    The next target: Eriteria – watch how human rights violations are used as a pretext before Ethipia decided to invade. I have read in various places that Iran has got an agreement with Eriteria to use its port for the Iranian navy to refuel and re-supply.

    And the bigger picture will be to eject China from Africa’s oil and other natural resources now that Libya is bagged.

  138. Mashayar says:

    Hi RFIers,

    I came across a comprehensive article regarding the recent IAEA and Iran’s nuclear ambitions on Australia’s ABC site, written by someone with 40 years experience in the Australian govt.


    It pleases me someone seems to have some sense over here in Australia, and doesn’t just tow the USA line.

  139. Thanks, Arnold. I’ve already read Dan’s piece.


  140. Arnold Evans says:

    Eric: You may find Dan Joyner’s analysis of the most recent IAEA report, especially with his close look at the NPT Article II term “manufacture” of a nuclear weapon.


  141. pirouz_2 says:

    By the way in this presentation (especially the first part) just see if you see any modern day country which EXACZTLZY parallels the ideas suggested by B. Franklin and G. Washington for the British colonies and USA.

  142. pirouz_2 says:

    To all;
    Last night I stumbled on this speech by Prof. N. Chomsky. It is by far one of the BEST presentations of the US imperialism I have ever come across. Probably a lot of you have already seen it, but for those of you who have not I particularly recommend it. It is -in my humble opinion- a MUST see. I always learn a lot from listening to this man. It is seven parts and they are all on youtube. Here is the first part:


  143. kooshy says:

    Pirouz_2 says:
    November 14, 2011 at 4:45 pm

    Pirouz jan
    Good and fair analysis on AP issue, thank you

  144. kooshy says:

    November 13, 2011

    IAEA Iran Report Spins Intelligence
    Gareth Porter: Dubious intelligence used as pretext for tougher sanctions


  145. pirouz_2 says:

    By the way Eric;
    Regarding my previous message:

    I guess in a lot of cases being able to read people’s minds does not matter. But in case of the analyses of the Western ‘analysits’ it sort of matters. You see if they really dont believe in their own analysis then it is absolutely ‘futile’ to present them with more irrefutible evidence or provide them with more ‘transparency’.
    And if they actually do believe in their own analysis then they must be as inaccessible to sober minded people such as yourself as the US public is. So how do you plan to reach them with the new irrefutible evidence and show them the truth?
    By the way in my humble opinion in case of pretty much all mainstream media, the reality is the former and not the latter (ie. deep inside they don’t believe in their own analysis either, they are just being dishonest.)

  146. Humanist says:

    A superb article on recent IAEA report by an Iranian-American who, in my view, has a great analytical mind.


  147. pirouz_2 says:

    Eric A. Brill says:
    November 14, 2011 at 5:10 pm

    As I read R. Cohen’s piece, a very old fantasy of mine reappeared. You know sometimes you really wish you could read someone’s mind and see what’s going on in his/her head. Does (s)he really believe in what (s)he says? I mean as (s)he sits with a close friend or family or perhaps if (s)he does not have one when (s)he is thinking alone by himself/herself, does (s)he really think this way? Or in other words does he really believe in his own ‘analysis’?
    I don’t know whether in a lot of cases that really matters all that much, but still I can’t stop wishing I had the power to read some people’s thoughts.

    By the way Eric, what do you think about Robert Fisk’s persistence to always indicate ‘doubts’ about the 2009 election results? Have you ever tried to contact him by email? Does he know about your article on the 2009 elections?

  148. James Canning says:

    Iranian FM, Salehi, made several other good points in Spiegel interview: “Those who [have] met [Iran] with logic and fair-mindedness instead of a double standard have always been able to count on Iran’s cooperation.” and
    “The entire thing [plot to kill Saudi ambassador] was staged by Washington . .. US gov’t is presumably hoping to destroy relations between Iran and Saudi Arabia.”

    I would say that fanatical “supporters” of Israel right or wrong, want to damage relations between Saudi Arabia and Iran. There are of course many of them in US Congress etc.

  149. James Canning says:


    My understanding is that there in effect was a conspiracy, among some of the warmongering neocons, many of them of course Jewish, to block Iran’s IAEA application to re-fuel the TRR, in hopes Iran would then proceed to enrich to 20%, and that this enriching to 20% could be trumpeted as clear evidence of a decision to go forward with building nuclear weapons. My understanding is bolstered by the fact the neocons, many of whom of course are Jewish, have not encouraged Obama to respond to the Iranian offer to cease production of the 20% U.

  150. James Canning says:


    It would not be stretching things to say Gould has been party to a conspiracy with American neocons, many of whom of course are Jewish, to set up yet another illegal war in the Middle East, to “benefit” Israel (meaning, to facilitate continuation of insane Greater Israel programme).

  151. James Canning says:


    I encourage others to read the fascinating story by Craig Murray you linked (“Matthew Gould and the Plot to Attack Iran”). His point that UK gov’t had alway avoided sending a Jew to Israel as ambassador, to avoid conflicts of interests, clearly was the wise way to handle things, and sending a stridently Jewish ambassador to Israel, like Matthew Gould, was sure to lead to trouble. And all too easily, much worse.

  152. James Canning says:

    Interesting report in Nov. 12-13 Wall Street Journal (“Over dinner, Putin takes issue with western allies”), by Stephen Fidler. Quote: “Putin described the actions by the Western allies in Libya as an ‘outrageous violation’ of a UN resolution.” I tend to agree with Putin on this score. And on some other issues too, including the idiotic missile defence system armaments manufacturers keep pressing to be built in Eastern Europe etc.

  153. James Canning says:


    There seems no disputing that Iran has enough 20% U on hand to produce needed fuel rods (assuming those rods can be successfully produced or are being produced already), for several years.

    The Gulf monarchies are alarmed by Iran’s producing much more 20% U than is needed for the TRR. So, they ask, and press to William Hague: what is purpose of the extra 20% U?

    Do you think Iran was wise to offer to cease production of 20% U?

  154. James Canning says:


    I too am dismayed at what seems to be apparent dishonesty by Roger Cohen. I expected better from him.

    “Fraudulent” election seems to be a mantra of those Jews and others hoping to continue to discredit gov’t of Iran, to benefit Israel, no matter how much this in fact makes achieving a negotiated resolution more difficult.

  155. Voice of Tehran says:

    Pirouz_2 says:
    November 14, 2011 at 4:45 pm

    Bravo Pirouz , it was a real pleasure reading your comment and your analysis.
    I hope our most esteemed UU will be ‘challenged’ to come up with an in-depth evaluation of the all-over situation , which is desperately needed….!!!
    I am even ‘re-beginning’ to like the thoughtful comments of our fyi ; it seems the good recommendations of UU to get medical assistance were helpful :-))

  156. An observation on the Roger Cohen article cited below:

    Those of us who have followed closely the evolution of Roger Cohen’s views on the 2009 election will recognize they have come full circle:

    1. Initially, he was absolutely certain the election was fraudulent.

    2. About nine months later, he backed away from any such statements but insisted it was sufficient that one can “smell and breathe” the fraud.

    3. Today, 29 months after the election, he refers to the 2009 election as a “(fraudulent) election.” The parentheses appear in the original, suggesting that he still possesses a shred of intellectual honesty on the subject.

    4. When he next refers to the 2009 election, I’ll wager a nickel right now that the parentheses will have disappeared. Cohen will be right back to where he started, and 99% of his readers will assume he is correct.

  157. James,

    “As Eric points out, if Iran does not intend to build nuclear weapons, how does it make any sense to enrich large quantities of 20% U Emotionally satisfying, to be sure.”

    Actually, you still owe me an answer to a question I posed to you earlier. in essence, I don’t consider that Iran’s enrichment to 20% calls for any explanation, much less an apology, if Iran either needs it to run its TRR currently or in the near future, or has even a plausible argument that it needs to set aside an ample reserve to run its TRR in the future if the West continues to jerk it around on that subject as it’s done for the past several years. My understanding is that that is all Iran is doing here, and I see absolutely nothing wrong with that.

    If the US (and I would put the burden of proof on the US and make that burden heavy) can show clearly and convincingly that Iran’s production of 20% uranium is far in excess of what it needs currently and to establish ample reserves to run its TRR, then I might change my view and conclude that Iran is being unnecessarily provocative. But I see no reason right now to believe that’s the case, inasmuch as I treat the US’ bald assertion as nothing but a bald assertion unless and until I have reason to believe it’s anything more than that.

    That’s what I asked you in my earlier question: Is there any support for the US’ assertion, or not?

  158. Rehmat says:

    Humanist – West’s capitalist system is going down the drain – as the Occupied Wall Street movement is spread from the US to all western capitalists state. The movement have already brough regime changes in Italy and Greece – and Spain and Britain is next on the line.

    Today, the inequality in social status and the distribution of wealth is more widely spread than ever before in the history of mankind – thanks to the man-made cults like Capitalism, Communism and Socialism. While the West boasts having over 8,000 billionaire and close to one million millionaires – hundreds of millions of men, women and children live on less than a Euro a day. Hundreds of millions are denied access to drinkable water, healthcare, education, employment, and equal wages. Women and children are the greatest victims of these so-called “civilized West”, which uses them for sexual pleasures and labor for the greed.


  159. Pirouz_2,

    I’ll respond to your lengthy and thoughtful comment when I can give it the time it deserves.

    In the meantime, you and others might find interesting this article on Iran by the New York Times’ Roger Cohen:


    Bear in mind that, however those who are well-versed on Iran/US relations may feel about this article, most Americans will simply accept on faith the sorts of things one sees in this article. Bear in mind that Roger Cohen is considered to be a well-informed writer.

  160. Rehmat says:

    James Canning – Sarkozy and Cameron are Washington’s stooges and Obama on its par is AIPAC stooge. So could it be possible that France and Britain even think of invading Libya without green-light from Obama?

    Don’t forget, it’s American dollar which is world’s standard currency and not pound or the ‘French fries’. When American dollar goes down – so dose the economies of France and England. Libya was attacked and occupied to shore-up Judeo-Christian monetary system.

  161. Humanist says:

    The following captivating TED video shows, among many other keynotes, how in time the American Empire, under the capitalistic forces of glorifying the ‘American Dream’ (of becoming rich and powerful), has caused the distressing malaise of ever-increasing social inequality. Just pay attention on how often in the presented graphs US stands out on the extreme side.


  162. Pirouz_2 says:

    Eric A. Brill says:
    November 14, 2011 at 3:08 am

    My dear friend Eric;

    As always it is a great joy to read your comments. I will go part by part through your comment and tell you what I think about each part. However, before doing that, allow me to tell you first that I agree with you that Iran should not engage in any unnecessary provocation towards US.

    The problem is that I still don’t know which specific unnecessary acts of provocation Iran has been engaged in.

    From your post I understand that Iran’s refusal to ratify AP is one example? Is there any other unnecessarily provocative act that you think Iran has committed or is it just this one? Because you mention “hiding the ball” which I am not sure refers to which specific action(s) by Iran? Apart from you, there are other very respectable people such as Gareth Porter who also (implicitly) say that Iran is not being ‘completely’ transparent about its nuclear program. So I would very much be interested in knowing what it is exactly that you guys refer to.

    Personally I believe that Iran is using AP as a bargaining chip (and on that one I agree with Iranian policy makers and disagree with you). You see, I think the situation is fairly transparent to all those who are actually involved; the US public may not know the truth, but the decision makers in all involved parties know the truth very well. I have no doubt that the West knows very well that Iran is not about to make a bomb, and they know very well there are no ‘illicit’ activity going on by Iran. What they don’t wish to see is an Iran which has the nuclear capability and can go down the road of making a N. weapon if it is ‘forced’ to. They just want to be able to harass Iran with impunity without having to worry that Iran may go down the road of ‘making a warhead’ even if it is forced to.

    However, US would always welcome additional commitments and more and more ‘observability’ by Iran in its nuclear program. In light of this fact, Iran is –in my opinion- thinking that it can stick with its current commitments and rather keep AP and any measures beyond the so to speak vanilla NPT safeguards as a bargaining chip.

    Iran knows that US would want to have more and more observation capabilities to its nuclear program, so it wants to use that as a leverage to say: “you are not going to get anywhere by bullying, but if you want to have more information, you can get it by easing up the sanctions”. Admittedly this is not much of a “leverage”, but a) it is better than nothing , b) what is the point of making more commitments when they bring you nothing and c) if Iran makes this commitment it will be seen as a sign of weakness and Western analysts will shout that it was the effect of the ‘sanctions’ and the tough stance by USA which made Iran make these concessions and they will push for an even tougher stance.

    So this is my take on AP. I am not sure what other “hiding the ball” you are referring to? I personally don’t see not ratifying the AP as “hiding the ball”. Hiding the ball would be –in my view- having or pretending to have an illicit program to make a bomb. I don’t see any actions from the Iranian side along those lines, if you do please tell me what it is.

    As for your example of Ghaddafi: it is perhaps tangential to our discussion because I already agree with you on that unnecessary provocation is not a wise move by Iran.

    However, I don’t quite agree with your example. I don’t think that if Ghaddafi had behaved differently, that he could have managed the flow of events differently. I have ZERO DOUBT that the west was absolutely determined in regime change in Libya, no matter what Ghaddafi did or did not. There are a lot of different arguments as to why the West made the military intervention in Libya, the most common argument in the Western circles is the “humanitarian” motives for the intervention. And I am confident that like me, you too find this argument as ridiculously absurd (for obvious reasons). Another argument is that they did it for the oil (I have heard this one from some people on the radical left). There is a partial truth in this one, because it is common knowledge that the Libyan revolutionaries (!!!) have promised 35% of their oil revenue to France in appreciation for what they did to their country!! Furthermore I heard on RT that apparently UK has spent some $500 M on bombs and aircraft spare parts during the Libyan air campaign and it is expecting some $300 Bn in return in “reconstruction” contracts, well I’d say 60000% annual rate of return is a pretty hefty profit and could be a hell of a motivation.

    Another argument is that (mainly I have heard this one from Prof. Chomsky) the West does not want unstable and unreliable puppet dictators and that Ghaddafi was too much of a loose cannon. There is partial truth in this too.

    However, in my opinion the most important reason for NATO’s campaign in Libya was the revival of the regime-change-via-brute-force-of-military method. You see there is nothing as beautiful and reassuring as the fact that you can change ANY government that you want with impunity through sheer military force with zero consequences for you. That was the basis of the European colonialism in 16th, 17th, 18th, and 19th century and that is the basis of US colonialism in 20th and 21st century: Military supremacy. Well this military supremacy was very badly shattered first in Iraq, then in Afghanistan and later on it was completely devastated in Lebanon. So I think the most important reason for the NATO campaign was to salvage the broken down weapon that they had and try to “get back on the horse” so to speak and put the fear of western military might back into people’s heart.

    So I really don’t believe that anything that Ghaddafi would do would make any difference as to what NATO was going to do.

  163. fyi says:

    Karl says: November 14, 2011 at 3:41 pm

    Yes, he (Mr. Canning) must be an Englishman.

    A Welchman or a Scott would not have been in such a state of denial.

    Wonder were he is from; probably somwhere East of London.

  164. Karl says:

    “Foolish American attitude toward Iran is not “racist”. Full stop. Now, if one wants to argue that foolish American politicians give insufficient weight to religious rulings made by Khamenei, then this position clearly has merit.”

    It is racism, they think they are superior to others.

  165. Karl says:


    UK threatened Iran today that the use of force is possible.


    Not to mention back in 2010 when cameron claimed that Iran got nukes.

  166. James Canning says:


    I do not think Obama would have intervened militarily in Libya if Britain and France had not done so, and in effect opened the operation.

  167. James Canning says:


    Some wll-informed British foreign policy experts say that Gaddafi’s blunders forced the UK gov’t to go forward with military intervention which some US leaders wanted anyway. US military largely opposed the idea.

    I think there would have been no intervention if Gaddafi had listened to very sound advice given to him.

  168. James Canning says:


    I do not think you pay sufficient attention to the imporance of powerful Jews in providing campaign finance in the UK. We all know how important this factor is in US politics.

    Hague does not accept that Iran is an enemy. But Hague has no leeway currently to be too open on wish to improve US-Iran relations. Due to political situation in the US.

    Will UK be paying interest on impounded funds? Or is interest accruing?

  169. James,

    “I think you are much too simplistic and even cynical regarding Nato intervention in Libya. In fact, Hague and British FCO tried to avoid the creation of a pretext for military intervention.”

    Good for those Brits. As they well knew, though, and you probably well knew:

    1. It really didn’t matter whether the Brits felt a pretext for military intervention existed; all that mattered is whether the US felt that – or, more accurately, claimed to feel that.

    2. The US had a predictable strong inclination to find a pretext for military intervention, no matter what the well-meaning Hague and British FCO might have done to prevent that.

    So, “cynical?” I plead guilty to that. “Simplistic?” Not sure what you mean.

  170. James Canning says:

    Dedicated neocon Jackson Diehl, in today’s Washington Post (“For Israel, a tough call on attacking Iran”). Diehl asks: “How much time is there to stop an Iranian bomb”?

  171. James Canning says:


    Politically impossible, both in UK and US, for politicians to say use of force not an option. Full stop.

  172. Karl says:


    Sorry UK is as much as complicit in the anti-Iranian propaganda and threat as US/Israel. Today Cameron made clear publicly that force is an option regarding Iran.

  173. fyi says:

    James Canning says: November 14, 2011 at 2:22 pm

    Men must be judged by their actions and likewise countries.

    UK is a hostile state.

    When are they going to return the pirated 1.5 billion pounds to Iran?

  174. fyi says:

    James Canning says: November 14, 2011 at 12:50 pm

    This issue is of some relevance to Iran but of much more relevance to US and UK and the status of Jews in those 2 countries.

    That is why I pity Jews; not every one in Cornwall or Yorkshire is a stupid hick.

    Those people read and will question why Jews are exploiting UK.

    There will be consequences.

  175. James Canning says:


    William Hague continues to make clear the UK does not seek regime change in Iran. Full stop. Foolish (and opportunistic) American politicians would like to see “regime change” in Iran.

  176. James Canning says:


    Foolish and opportunistic American politicians. Being nasty about Iran scores points and fills the campaign coffers. Israel lobby wants to distract attention from insane Greater Israel programme which truly threatens the peace of the Middle East.

  177. James Canning says:


    Foolish American attitude toward Iran is not “racist”. Full stop. Now, if one wants to argue that foolish American politicians give insufficient weight to religious rulings made by Khamenei, then this position clearly has merit.

  178. James Canning says:

    Iranian foreign minister Salehi todl Spiegel, in interview published today: “Khamenei issued a fatwa. . . describing nuclear weapons as un-Islamic. They are ‘haram,’, forbidden, which means these weapons of mass destruction play no role in our defense strategy.”

  179. Karl says:

    The approach to Iran is beyond reasonable political leaders call for sanctions, assasinations etc, its reckless. US base it premise on the barbaric theory that “if you just threat x enough, if you just kill some, they will accept our terms”. For what?! I am ashamed being a westerner because deep down this is racism. “The new-euro-american exceptionalism”.

    There cant be no reason to doubt that the sanctions are imposed to bring regime change, nothing else. US as a strong power have the power to show goodwill, they have the power to let go of the threats, however they arent sincere regarding Iran. And they are too brainwashed to be turned around.

    In fact US would gain alot with being friends with Iran compared to Israel.

  180. Kathleen says:

    Will the Iraqi warmongers and Israel be successful at leading the US into another unnecessary military confrontation? They have been setting this stage for quite some time. Contact your Reps every day. Say no to a military confrontation with Iran.

    I recount a hundred, a thousand dead…..war crimes
    “no sound bite no sound bite no sound bite no sound bite will bring them back to life” Chills

  181. Cyrus says:

    India with NAM in slamming IAEA report on Iran
    Indian Express
    Fri Sep 17 2010, 04:07 hrs


  182. James Canning says:


    I think you are much too simplistic and even cynical regarding Nato intervention in Libya. In fact, Hague and British FCO tried to avoid the creation of a pretext for military intervention. Hague was bashed good and hard for being so reluctant to have UK intervene.

    Hague feared what would come to pass after overthrow of Gaddafi. We still do not know, of course, what will happen in Libay. Will civil war be avoided?

  183. James Canning says:


    Chances the US would use nukes to penetrate Iranian nuclear bunkers are virtually zero. Nil, practically speaking. Such use would literally be insane.

  184. James Canning says:


    I should add, to response to your question, that William Hague was in Saudi Arabia not so long ago, and the Saudi concerns about Iran’s enriching to 20% were delivered to him loud and clear.

    As Eric points out, if Iran does not intend to build nuclear weapons, how does it make any sense to enrich large quantities of 20% U? Emotionally satisfying, to be sure.

  185. James Canning says:


    Gaddafi very foolishly rejected the pleas of a number of European diplomats to tone down his response to the revolt in eastern Libya. Gaddafi ignored warnings his ranting on TV would bring about overwhelming public support in UK and France for military intervention.

  186. James Canning says:


    Very interesting article you linked. Thanks. Werrity at least one time arranged for the UK defence minister to meet with an agent of the Iranian gov’t, but for most part Werrity was effectively employed by a number of very very rich Jews, to lobby the defence minister on behalf of the British equivalent of Aipac.

    The UK newspapers are not controlled by the Israel lobby, though one readily can argue that US newspapers are largely controlled by that lobby.

    Public opinion is of great importance in UK. William Hague was opposed to British military intervention in Libya, but pressure of public opinion (and considerations of how best to work closely with France in defence matters) brought on the Libyan intervention. Israel lobby obviously trying to repeat the process with Syria, and Iran.

  187. paul says:

    Gaddafi’s rhetoric did not give anyone an excuse. It was taken for that. Anything he said could have been.

  188. James Canning says:


    And bear in mind that invading Iraq was clearly not in the best interests of the American people or the US. It was hugely beneficial to certain powerful interests, primarily Jewish, that hoped to gain great wealth from the invasion (and destruction of Sunni power structure). Deceiving the public was crucially important to set up the illegal invasion.

  189. James Canning says:


    I think you can scarcely be more wrong on this issue. That powerful Jewish interests endlessly work to slant newspaper and other media coverage of Israel, the Israel/Palestine problem, and Iran, in the UK and elsewhere, to benefit the current gov’t of Israel, is of enormous importance.

  190. James Canning says:


    I agree with you that Reza Marashi is correct to say: “Iranian foreign minister Ali Akbar Salehi made headlines recently when he said [Iran] would like to have friendly relations with the [US]. . .”

    Russia last week encouraged Iran to help the diplomatic resolution of the dispute. And Russia called again for staged reductions in the sanctions.

  191. fyi says:

    James Canning says: November 14, 2011 at 12:40 pm

    I did not follow the scandal.

    UK will go to war with Iran if her leaders – one way or another – decide that is in their interests.

    Specific machinations such as this pseudo-scandal are not impotant.

  192. James Canning says:


    I think potential membership by Palesine in IAEA already has been under discussion.

  193. James Canning says:


    Are you aware of the number of hugely rich British and Israeli (and other) Jews who work ceaselessly to foster strong relations between the UK and Israel? Did you follow the Werrity scandal (which brought about resignation of Liam Fox as defence minister)?

  194. fyi says:

    nahid says: November 14, 2011 at 10:09 am

    This is mostly innuendo.

    Ambassadors are free to explore common policy positions with their host countries and to bring different people to meet one another.

    So I do not think that there is much to this meeting.

    But the article, indirectly, indicates the flaw in the logic of the Axis Powers relationship with Israel: the absence of any formal instrument of alliance or formal alliance structure.

    This sort of strategic ambiguity might serve them – their leaders might think – but in fact it increases the chance for miscalculations and war.

    Furthermore, what are the obligations of UK to Israel? Or Israel to UK?

    Why is UK so cozy with Israel?

    It makes no strategic sense to me at this time, 2011.

    Furthermore, I wish these non-Israeli Jewish Partisans of Israel had given some thought to what their actions would imply for the continued acceptance and well-being of Jews everywhere else.

    As is, they are increasing the suspicion in many people’s minds that a Jew’s foremost loyalty lies with the State of Israel; that wherever Jews live, their country is Israel.

    [An analogous situation obtains in East Asia; Chinese communities outside of China are suspected of dual loyalties. You can see it most strongly expressed in Malaysia – where Chinese have lived for centuries. You could see it in Vietnam where Chinese fled South Vietnam after 1975.]

    Already in US very many people have started thinking of Jews not as real Americans whose home is US; but rather people whose real country is Israel.

    You really have to pity them – “What price Israel?”

  195. Irshad says:

    Someone, by the name of Biklett, wrote this on the comment section over at the moon of alabama site that gave me a good laugh (in regards to the latest IAEA report on Ayran):

    “The Palestinians should join the IAEA so that the US will cut its funding.”


    Can Palestine join the IAEA? (A serious question)

  196. fyi says:


    Former US official (State Department) on Iran:


    Where I think he is wrong is his characterization of Mr. Ahmadinejad and the claim (by him) that Iranians discount US or Israeli attacks.

    Other than those, it is very accurate and captures the geopolitical sistuation quite well.

  197. nahid says:

    Dear FYI
    Is this article makes sense >

  198. Irshad says:

    sorry, meant war and not (ware!)

  199. Irshad says:

    @James Canning and everyone else! – please read the story thats been relased by former UK amabsador, Craigh Murray re: the Werrity affiar:


    James – WTF is going on with the Conservative Party? Is Vague Hague not in control of his ambassadors, who are plotting for another suicidal war in the ME? And whats Cameron doing to get the Tory house in order or is Hasbara kosher £££ too juicy to do anything about?

    fyi is right to say, the only thing the Axis powers have got to offer the ME is ware and destruction. Nothing more. Nothing less.

  200. Tin,

    “To think that NATO would care about humanitarian needs are just ridiculous.”

    Trust me on this one, Tin. It didn’t occur to me for a moment that NATO cared about humanitarian needs. Anyone who’s read my comments here on Libya would understand that very well. What NATO cared about was a pretext. Qaddafi’s mid-March rhetoric gave them that.

  201. Pirouz,

    “Eric, my friend, how little you understand the Iranian mentality.”

    I’d appreciate some elaboration on this point.

  202. Unknown Unknowns says:

    A voice of sanity from the Axis of Weasels: Michael Scheuer


    Needless to say, no one listens to Mr. Scheuer.

  203. Unknown Unknowns says:

    For shits and giggles: World Financial Collapse Explained in 3 Minutes


    Weasels B. Squirmin, Esq.

  204. Photi says:

    Tin says:
    November 14, 2011 at 7:22 am

    Tin, in case there was any doubt that the opposition in Iran was anything but loyal opposition, let the delusional take note. Those petty, American-funded saboteurs should go take a hike.

  205. Irshad says:


    An Iranian discussing about the likelihood of an Isreali/American attack on Iran.

    Its interesting that he says, only way to achieve US/Isreal objective is to use nuclear bombs to get to the underground facility, this is whats stopping them from attacking. Imagine, using nukes to stop Natanz….wheres Amano!

  206. Tin says:

    ‘Iran opposition will unite with government should Israel attack’


    Khatami tells the obvious, people wont accept their state being wiped off by Israel.

  207. Tin says:

    The libyan rebels (I am not talking about the peaceful libyans protesting) was violent from the very start. To think that NATO would care about humanitarian needs are just ridiculous.

  208. BiBiJon says:

    A cinematic depiction of:

    I would keep in mind that very many Americans are ever-so-pleased that, in their view, the US has recently come up with a very cheap and effective way – the “Libya Way” – of overthrowing uppity foreign governments. I doubt you fully appreciate just how attractive that seems to many influential politicians, journalists and other opinion shapers in this country.


    Because a wealthy powerful country is likely to develop a taste for interventionist policies, and her outsized reservoir of wealth, power and influence will never allow her to perceive reality the way the rest of the world does, one must be careful of delusions.

    One quick way of disabusing oneself of delusions, and curing “mainstream” hysteria is to allow one’s hopelessly interventionist instincts determine if one has been “provoked”, or “bored” into starting a war with Iran.

  209. Voice of Tehran says:

    Following article from Saman Mohammadi in Prison Planet ( Alex Jones ) attracted me.
    As Israel is a ‘ private ‘ project of the world cabal elitists and is ongoing since 100 years exactly according to the planning , there is little reason to believe that this fascist course might change.


    “In short, for Israel an attack against Iran and Israel’s other enemies on the pretext of pre-empting an immediate threat to its own existence will be the do or die action it will take in order to realise Zionism’s ultimate endgame; the creation of a Greater Israel.

    The coming confrontation is not about Iran being a threat; it is about Israel ridding itself of all of its enemies in the places that it would like to annex as part of its realisation of creating a permanent Greater Israel nation abundant with fertile lands, its own water resources, and living space. War is its pretext.” – Damian Lataan; The U.S. And Israel’s ‘Obsession’ With Iran – The Real Reasons (November 6, 2011).

    “The law is whatever people determine it to be.” – David Ben-Gurion, Israel’s first Prime Minister.

    “Before the founding of the state, on the eve of its creation, our main interests was self-defense. To a large extent, the creation of the state was an act of self-defense. . . . Many think that we’re still at the same stage. But now the issue at hand is conquest, not self-defense.” – David Ben-Gurion.

    There is a mistaken belief held by many people that the U.S. government won’t attack Iran or allow Israel to attack because of the economic repercussions that will follow.

    Oil prices will rise to astronomical levels, global trade will diminish, and world poverty rates will increase rapidly as the global economy comes to a standstill.

    People ask: Who wants to see this nightmare scenario unfold?

    The answer is clear: The Western plutocratic elite.

  210. Pirouz says:

    Eric, my friend, how little you understand the Iranian mentality.

    BTW: my fellow defense observers have pointed out that rather than pointing to Qaddafi’s public blustering, his true failing was, over the years, not making any real effort in upgrading his SAM network into a viable IADS. Such a system would have extended to him the week needed in securing the rebel sanctuary in Benghazi before NATO’s belligerent intervention took effect through air power. He was that close.

    As we speak, the point I made previously here at RFI about another phase possibly taking place in the Libyan conflict might now be at the threshold:

    At Least Six Are Killed as Libyan Militias Clash on Coastal Highway Near Tripoli


    Time will tell.

  211. Pirouz_2,

    Whether one liked him or not, Moammar Qaddafi probably would be in power today if he and his son had toned down their rhetoric several notches in mid-March as the Libyan army was about to retake Benghazi, if he had spoken calmly about simply restoring order and expressed his eagerness to listen respectfully to the concerns of rebel leaders as soon as things had calmed down – rather than calling them rats and vowing to hunt them down and kill them.

    Had Qaddafi handled the “end game” that way (or, I should say, what would have been the “end game” if he had handled it that way), I doubt it would have slowed down his retaking of Benghazi by more than a few days, and I doubt it would have affected his post-fighting behavior in any perceptible way. In short, he gained absolutely nothing by – in your words – “needlessly provoking” the US. If he had a chance to do it over, I strongly suspect Qaddafi would handle the situation a little differently.

    I consistently advocate Iran standing tall – heading along its path toward peaceful nuclear energy, strengthening its conventional military, developing its economy, spreading its influence throughout the Middle East and the rest of the world as best it can – all while paying as little attention as possible to the endless interference of the US. In the nuclear sphere, my view means that I strongly agree that Iran should not cave in to the IAEA’s or the UNSC’s bullying on its nuclear program – endless questions about “alleged studies” and other military matters, for example, or constant demands that Iran not enrich uranium.

    On the other hand, I see no reason whatsoever that Iran shouldn’t sign up for the same level of disclosure as nearly all other “nuclear” countries do (not all, I concede): the Additional Protocol and new Code 3.1. This distinction illustrates my central point – that Iran gains nothing whatsoever by “needlessly provoking” the US: hanging tough on the “alleged studies” may be “necessary provoking,” but hanging tough on the Additional Protocol and new Code 3.1 is “needless provoking.”

    As I hope I’ve made clear recently, I think Iran already pays too much attention to the US, thereby drawing even more US attention to Iran. It’s hard to ignore, I concede, a country that continually harasses you, persuades others to impose painful sanctions on you, and spends hundreds of millions of dollars a year on covert operations aimed at you. Nevertheless, sometimes it seems to me that Iran craves the attention. Why else would it continually demand that the US recognize its right to enrichment, or complain about favoritism toward Israel, or make all sorts of naive appeals to fairness and justice?

    Get over it. Life is not fair. The world is not just. No US President in the foreseeable future is going to say anything, much less sign anything, that acknowledges Iran’s right to enrich uranium – or even to let Iranian nuclear scientists feel safe as they drive to work each day. No American politician is ever going to say it’s high time Iran got treated the same as Israel. It’s just not going to happen, and to build arguments on an assumption that it will happen because it should happen is an utter waste of time and intellectual energy.

    It’s also a waste of time and intellectual energy to spin out wishful scenarios about how safe and serene Iranians would feel if they only had the bomb, or at least had the world guessing whether they had one or not. Whether or not one thinks it would be a good idea, Iran is not going to get the bomb – or if it does, the US probably will bomb it the moment it finds out. The US has many thousands of bombs, after all. It very much likes that competitive edge, and will be very strongly inclined to ensure that it maintains it – even after finding out, much to its annoyance, that one or two little Iranian bombs have slipped by undetected. So if you really think Iran is ever going to get the bomb, or that it’s ever going to gain any advantage from doing so, my advice is this: get over it.

    It’s a closer question whether Iran will ever achieve the “keep ’em guessing” state of affairs, which is usually given the more respectable-sounding label of “nuclear weapons capability.” But even that hope, in my view, is a forlorn one. Much more likely, the closer Iran gets to that, by playing what I call “hide the ball” games (much to the annoyance, I know, of those who think this approach makes great sense), the more likely the US will simply attack Iran to put an end to the guessing game. All that Iran will get from playing “hide the ball” will be an entirely avoidable US attack on the Iranian people.

    I would keep in mind that very many Americans are ever-so-pleased that, in their view, the US has recently come up with a very cheap and effective way – the “Libya Way” – of overthrowing uppity foreign governments. I doubt you fully appreciate just how attractive that seems to many influential politicians, journalists and other opinion shapers in this country. For a long time after Vietnam, the prevalent thinking was that air wars could never do the job; boots on the ground were required. Despite the sufficiency of air attacks in the first Iraq War (I’d barely finished my first slice of pizza after sitting down to watch the ground war when that phase was suddenly over), despite the near-total absence of soldiers’ boots on the ground when the US took Afghanistan in late 2001, this “boots on the ground” thinking persisted for as long as the second Iraq War. What we learned there, however, and in Afghanistan, was that “boots on the ground” ends up meaning nothing but a long, painful, expensive occupation.

    So “boots on the ground” is no longer in vogue here, having given way to the no-muss, no-fuss “Libya Way” of fighting wars. “Drones in the air” (and fighter-bombers, of course) are all the rage now, not boots on the ground. Whether or not our military guys really agree, most Americans think we can and should fight future wars while sitting in front of a computer screen somewhere in Missouri, pressing buttons and rolling mouses across desktops like some 14-year old boy playing Modern Warfare 2 on his X-Box 360.

    And that no-muss, no-fuss approach that Americans seem to find so fascinating makes it more likely that they will sign up for yet another war – however difficult that might be to believe after the Iraq debacle. In fact, some wars fought with this new approach don’t even require Americans to sign up at all (think of Yemen, or Pakistan): the war just happens and the US government doesn’t even bother to tell Americans it is – at least until it has some impressive no-muss, no-fuss drone kill to report, after which report the American people once again forget that the quiet little war is even happening.

    An attack on Iran, of course, would be impossible to hide, but that doesn’t mean it can’t be sold as another Libya-style no-muss, no-fuss war on the cheap. At the moment, I don’t think that will happen. But if I were Iran, I would keep that risk clearly in mind as I go on my merry way down the path toward peaceful nuclear energy, strengthening my conventional military, developing my economy, spreading my influence throughout the Middle East and the rest of the world as best I can – all while paying as little attention as possible to the endless interference of the US.

    My objective in dealing with the US would not be to try to persuade it to start being nice to me. My sole objective would be to keep the US from dropping bombs on me while I went about my business. If I wanted the world to be nicer to me (as I would), I would talk to other countries – not the US – about how unfair life is for me, and try to persuade those other countries to stop sucking up to the US quite so much. Only after I’d gotten to be much better friends with those other countries, and much stronger on my own, would I consider trying to make friends with the US. Until then I’d try to ignore it as much as possible, and certainly would not needlessly provoke it.

    The very last thing I’d do while going about my business and ignoring the US is to provoke some US President by playing “hide the ball” games with its nuclear program, especially one from the political party whose members are generally rumored to be missing large testicles. For the life of me, I just don’t see what Iran thinks it gains

  212. Arnold Evans says:

    pirouz_2 says:
    November 13, 2011 at 6:22 pm

    All I can see is that after that comment by Jeffery Lewis there are no more comments from Arnold.

    Two or three comments I made before Jeffery decided they need a break from me were then deleted (I can see them as waited to be moderated, last I looked). The most recent post on my blog started as a long comment summarizing the responses I got from Andy and John Schilling over there that was, I believe, deleted from the original blog post. After more than one person had responded to it. I believe the responses are gone also.


    The overall position regarding Iran’s nuclear program of armscontrolwonk, like that of the Western nuclear policy community, is just not coherent, and I guess it is embarrassing to them to see that pointed out.

  213. pirouz_2 says:

    A correction to my previous message:

    I wrote: “I think you worry too much about Iranians leaving NPT or ‘provoking’ USA. I am fairly confident that unless there is an out right attck on Iranian soil, that Iran would be leaving NPT.”

    I should have written:”I think you worry too much about Iranians leaving NPT or ‘provoking’ USA. I am fairly confident that unless there is an out right attck on Iranian soil, that Iran would NOT be leaving NPT.”

    I would also like to add the following:
    If there is any security related aspect of the Iranian nuclear program (which in my opinion there is), it is to deter US from attacking it, not to provoke it to do that!!
    But you cannot stop MPs from talking, right? There were some MPs that a few months ago were suggesting that Iran should send arms to Bahrain, did it ever happen? (in fact I was confident from day one that nothing serious would come out of that and that it was just rhetoric).
    ‘IF’ a majority of the MPs start talking about pulling out of NPT (which I am sure will never happen unless there is an attack on the Iranian soil) then I think Eric would be justified in his worries.

  214. pirouz_2 says:

    Eric A. Brill says:
    November 13, 2011 at 9:04 pm

    I think you worry too much about Iranians leaving NPT or ‘provoking’ USA. I am fairly confident that unless there is an out right attck on Iranian soil, that Iran would be leaving NPT.
    A lot of such noises coming out of Majlis are in essence empty words. It is not gonna get there.
    As for needlessly provoking US, do you think that they have already done so or are you worried that they may do so in the future?

  215. Unknown Unknowns says:

    The Wahhabite rise to power has had three adumbrations, the last of which fully crystallized or solidified around 1934 or thereabouts. Britain was not only involved, but was instrumental in all three rises to power of this evil. As a matter of fact, as you well know, Abdul-Aziz ibn Sa’ud was knighted for his services to the Crown by Queen Victoria.

    Zero help of Britain? Puh-leeeeeeeeease.

    The puddle of piddle
    Which used to be little
    Is rising around you!
    Rising around you!

  216. Unknown Unknowns says:


    Its a matter of the difference in philosophic approach. It was (and if you can imagine, still remains) a matter of pride for Americans that their system of governance is based on the *unfettered* reign of Capital. That is why your lover Margaret Thatcher was so enamored of that other clown, Ronald Reagan, and all things American: her philosophy, after Ayn Rand all other such radical libertarian village idiots, is that freedom obtains in the state of nature, on its own, as it were, and that when governments get involved and fetter that Lilliputian giant, that freedom is curtailed and absolute freedom reduced. The communitarian argument, of course, which is shared by true Conservatives, Liberals and Labour alike, is that nature must be tamed in order for freedom to obtain, the difference between them being one of degree.

    I guess I will now stop lecturing you on the political philosophy of the parites of your own country.

  217. Unknown Unknowns says:

    James: again, the number of millionaires or billionaires has nothing whatever to do with whether a country is Capitalist or not. By that logic, you are equating capitalism with wealth, and I know you are not THAT stupid. Sorry, I mean, I know that you are not that stupid :D

    The criterion has to do with whether the dynamics and exigencies of capital accumulation and accumulated capital (its need to maintain and increase itself, and the means used to effect those needs)… whether those considerations have primacy and pride of place in the decision-making organs of state (as in the lobbyist model of the US Congress and Senate, wherein the two chambers are the best government money can buy). So the difference between the US and UK systems is that in the latter, people are actually in charge, be they the mandarins of Whitehall, the Lords and peers, or the MP’s operating within the parliamentary party system. In the US, there are some moderating influences on the reign of Capital, but they are the exceptions that undergird the rule.

  218. Unknown Unknowns says:

    Rehmat says, “I don’t agree with Ayatullah Ali Khamenei’s ‘fatwa’ on this matter. He is trying not to build nuclear bomb because nuclear bomb is a WMD which doesn’t differentiate between combatants and the civilians. However, he must realize that US-Israel doesn’t care how many hundreds of thousands of Iranian civilians they kill.”

    As Bugs Bunny has famously said, or as the equally ludicrous Australians used to say during the War of 1939 where labor shortages put pressure on the government to relax their racist anti-immigration policy in support of cheap Chinese labor in aid of the war effort, “Two Wongs don’t make a White.”

    Besides, it is incumbent on you and FYI and the pro-nuclear weapon peanut gallery to respond to the excellent point recently made by another commenter (BiBiJon?), who correctly pointed out that Pakistan’s nuclear arsenal has not prevented the incursion of their airspace and the humiliation of their sense of national sovereignty by Uncle Weasel’s drones and Special Forces.

  219. Nima Shirazi says:

    Talk of Iran leaving the NPT is not new…and seems to be politically-motivated bluster from conservative members of the Majlis, with no bearing on any real consideration being made by the government at large.

    See here:


  220. Clint says:
    November 13, 2011 at 7:12 pm

    “Leaving the NPT is advantageous:”



    With all due respect to you and the Iranian Majlis member who recommends that Iran simply withdraw from the NPT, I’m not sure either of you understands just how “mainstream” the “bomb Iran” mantra has become in the US.

    Please be sure to watch another PressTV video that’s accessible at the link for this one – the video entitled “US Confesses to Covert Ops Against Iran.” It includes clips of a debate among Republican candidates for the 2012 US Presidential nomination, in which each candidate tries to outdo the other in promising covert ops (and maybe overt ops) against Iran, most of them in conjunction with Israel.

    Press for Iran leaving the NPT if you like. But if you consider yourself a responsible adult, at least be sure to watch this video and give it all just a bit more thought. I really don’t think you get it.

  221. Rehmat says:

    James Canning – I have written several times that Islamic Republic must build a couple of nuclear bombs as deterrent. Two Jewish bloggers, Gilad Atzmon and Roger Tucker agree with me 101% on this.

    I bet had Afghanistan, Iraq or Libya a nuclear bomb – US would not have dared to attack those countries for Israel.

    I don’t agree with Ayatullah Ali Khamenei’s ‘fatwa’ on this matter. He is trying not to build nuclear bomb because nuclear bomb is a WMD which doesn’t differentiate between combatants and the civilians. However, he must realize that US-Israel doesn’t care how many hundreds of thousands of Iranian civilians they kill.

  222. Sakineh Bagoom says:

    James Canning says: November 13, 2011 at 6:48 pm
    ” Do you hope Iran will in fact try to build nukes? Do you think Iran should not have offered to cease production of 20% U?”

    James, you already know my view on this, that is: nukes don’t serve Iran any purpose. Its resources, its location, and brainpower however achieve Iran’s strategic independence. NOT NUKES. As in real estate it is, location, location, location. That’s why I keep saying after all is said and done, it’s not like you can pick Iran up and locate it elsewhere on the map.
    As for the cessation of production U20: it was an offer that was made, like many others by Iran, but was ignored by the West. It’s not up to me to say whether Iran should have or not.

  223. James Canning says:

    Unknown Unknowns,

    What distinction do you draw between the US and the UK, regarding “capitalism”? UK has stronger public health system?

  224. James Canning says:

    Unknown Unknowns,

    A number of first-rate economists in Europe now see China as becoming hyper-capitalist. True, the system is hybrid. How many billionaires does China need to produce, to qualify as capitalist? The continuing control of the Communist Party is enabling the rapid economic advances.

  225. James Canning says:

    Unknown Unknowns,

    Didn’t the Wahabis capture Mecca and Medina two hundred years ago? With zero help from Britain?

  226. Unknown Unknowns says:


    By popular demand, and in the interest of sanity on this site, I have reconsidered, and have agreed to continue your treatment here at RFI. But you should know that this is only because you are a Rush fan. This is the lone shard of Light that leads me to believe there is hope of bringing you back from the Dark Side, brought about by your unfortunate affliction by the Born Again word-virus epidemic of modern Christendom.


    The Ayatoller of Rock’n’roller.

  227. Unknown Unknowns says:

    Tim says “interesting that the wahabbites and zionists are allies.”

    The heretical sect of Wahhabism was nothing until The Poodle (who was The Big Dog at the time) decided to finance and arm it as a way to stab the Ottomans in its soft underbelly. So it is no surprise that this 200 year old poison dagger in the belly and indeed in the heart of Islamdom shares affinities with the 100 year old poison dagger of Zionism, which is a spearhead of that same imperialist agenda on Islamdom as White South Africa was to the ‘Dark Continent’.

    The heretical sect of Bahaism was exactly the same thing: nothing, until the Britanic Poodle decided to nurture it in its vicious interference in the internal affairs of cultures not its own. And now, after a 100-year gestation period, this poison has brought forth a Weasel of the likes of Juan Cole. Wonderful! Now that you are “informed”, you can proceed to “comment”. Just don’t try to post anything like this on *his* site, lest visitors there be similarly “informed.”

  228. Unknown Unknowns says:

    James Canning says:
    November 13, 2011 at 1:04 pm
    With China pursuing a robust capitalism, even hyper-capitalism, is there much reason to see capitalism as failing (in style of collapse of communism)? Communism produced poverty for the masses, with wealth a privilege for the few at the top.


    Incorrect. China’s system of governance is not capitalism.

    The system of governance known as Capitalism is that wherein capital and its exigencies, the dynamics of capital and capital accumulation and accumulated capital, are those which are the fundamental governing determinants for the direction society takes. China’s is a centrally planned economy, based on ideological factors that are far from the ideological formations collectively known as Capitalism.

    If you’ll excuse my frankness, to think of China’s economy as Capitalist is as elementary an error as to equate Iran’s system as Capitalist. Money is a medium whereby the distribution of scarce resources is effected. How those resources are *allocated*, the collectivity of values, how social justice is defined and arrived at, etc. – all of *these* considerations define the political economy of a state. Just because China uses money as the medium whereby its values are efficiently effected does not make its system Capitalist.

    Britain’s system, by the way, in case you were wondering, is not Capitalist either (it is a social democracy), despite a significant portion of it being Capitalist, i.e., the fact that its central bank is owned by private rather than public interests. So, the next time the Tories convene in Brighton, let them know that Bob is NOT your uncle ;o)

  229. Clint says:

    Leaving the NPT is advantageous:


  230. James Canning says:

    Russia continues to promote Sergei Lavrov’s very sensible proposal for a staged reduction in sanctions.

  231. James Canning says:


    Yes, it does appear the property market in Tel Aviv is healthy. Far healthier than in most American cities.

  232. James Canning says:


    I think Ahamdinejad is continuing monthly payments in cash, intended to lessen the pressure caused by significant inflation in Iran.

  233. Fiorangela says:

    Tin, If Israel is so hot to attack Iran, and if Israel knows that Iran will retaliate, and if Israelis are, as we are frequently told, extremely savvy about generating wealth, etc., then why are so many Israelis investing $400k to > $2 million (USD) in real property in Tel Aviv? http://www.lagur.com/english/?gclid=CKGj3azntKwCFU1x5QodRHUSJA

    a google search on “purchase real property Tel Aviv” returns nearly 9 million sites.

  234. James Canning says:


    Iran does in fact from time to time say or do things that cause concern in Saudi Arabia. Improvement in relations has been frustrated by Iranian demand Saudi national guard get out of Bahrain. Even if gov’t of Bahrain wants the Saudis there.

  235. James Canning says:


    A number of Americans tried to dissuade the Shah from spending so much money on weapons etc. The Shah did not like to listen to advice, from Americans or even from Iranians.

  236. Tin says:

    James Canning

    the gulf regimes and israel have began open up years ago, they work together in secret. wikileaks showed a connection between their gov for example. becuase they have this common, made up threat called Iran. The everywhere-boogeyman.

  237. James Canning says:


    I comprehend that you believe it should be solely the business of Iran if Iran enriches large quantities of 20% U, and even if Iran then goes on to enrich to 95%.
    Problem is that Russia and China lilely will back more UNSC sanctions if Iran goes that way. And a further UNSC resolution would be very useful for scaremongers and warmongers in US.

    Do you hope Iran will in fact try to build nukes? Do you think Iran should not have offered to cease production of 20% U?

  238. James Canning says:


    I agree with your suggestion Dennis Ross has been with Winep all along. Perhaps not on the direct payroll, however.

  239. James Canning says:


    I doubt Saudi Arabia is especially pleased to need to cooperate with Israel, but if the Saudis feel threatened by Iran this is to be expected.

  240. Sakineh Bagoom says:

    Missing an “of”

  241. Tin says:

    For Crying Out Loud!

    Report: Bahraini authorities detail terror suspects’ ties to Iran


    enough of this lies and warmongering.

    *. saudi-ambassador
    *. IAEA report
    *. bahrain accusations

    this is just ridiculous. interesting that the wahabbites and zionists are allies.

  242. pirouz_2 says:

    Eric A. Brill says:
    November 13, 2011 at 12:00 pm

    Eric you said: “I do note one suggestion for censorship of Arnold’s words (“string of colonies”), from a commenter who courageously identified himself as “Anonymous” ”

    Well “Anonymous” suggested it, and judging by this comment from Jeffer Lewis: “Yes, we need a break from Arnold.” I get a feeling that he [Jeffer Lewis] eventually agreed with “Anonymous”!
    I say “I have a feeling”, because I don’t know whether Arnold tried to post any comment after that or not. All I can see is that after that comment by Jeffery Lewis there are no more comments from Arnold.

  243. Clint says:

    Dennis Ross is going back to WINEP (did he ever really leave?):


  244. Tin says:

    The warmongering maniac in telaviv now refuse to even tell U.S. when they will hit Iran.


    Intresting that U.S. gain NOTHING by supporting this regime. Its a spoiled child as erdogan called israel.


  245. Sakineh Bagoom says:


    For the love Allah, please get over this 20% business!
    This is not about 19.75% (rounded for ease of conversation to 20%) or 3.5%, or 95%.
    Iran’s nuclear file is a politicized issue to gain leverage and to put political pressure on Iran. I don’t remember hearing, and doubt many here remember hearing or reading about the last time Iran purchased the last batch for medical use. It was a transactional issue, and not even newsworthy. Ahmadinejad has said, and I am paraphrasing here, that we wanted to buy a car. No big deal, we had done it in the past. Now they have made us create an assembly line to create that car ourselves.
    I am sure Iran wants to use the fruits of its labor to sell any overproduction in the future, and they have indicated as much. This is not to the liking of the nuclear club, as Iran is cutting-in into their monopoly.
    I know, you say, people point to 20% and say it’s a hop and skip to the bomb from there, but, everybody is privy to what’s going on here. This issue has been hashed over a decade now. Everybody knows about every detail of this program.
    If Iran deems it necessary to enrich to 3.5%, it is Iran’s business.
    If Iran deems it necessary to enrich to 19.75%, it is Iran’s business.
    If Iran deems it necessary to enrich to 95%, it is Iran’s business.
    If Iran deems it necessary to build a bomb, it is Iran’s business.
    I don’t remember hearing a boo about the bomb in Pakistan, in India, or specially in Israel. Then, why Iran? For the answer, see above.

  246. Fiorangela says:

    BibiJon to Eric Brill on Nov 13 2011 at 11:07 am —

    “Iran’s deterrence is not and will never be nuclear weapons. But, it could be as simple as announcing all empty container ships must stop at an Iranian port for inspection/certification. Otherwise they could be mistaken for as illegal-combatant vessels in a war zone and shot at on their way back to the Indian Ocean. Just that announcement, without firing a shot, will raise up oil prices, I’m sure.”

    In a new book titled The Oil Kings, Andrew Scott Cooper traces the complex chain of events — and the underhanded and secret exploitation of those events by Henry Kissinger — that turned America- and Israel-friendly Iran into a cash-strapped nation forced to deal with university student protests and the climax of those protests, the deposition of the Shah and Khomeini revolution. At the heart of each situation was the US desire to play off Iran and its very close friend, Israel, against Saudi Arabia; to keep oil process at a level that would support the American economy, regardless of the (negative) impact on ally Iran’s economy; and to sell Iran more weaponry than (as the US knew) Iran could afford.

    Today, the US thinks it can manipulate Iran’s economy and thereby bring about a revolution of its young people that will topple Iran’s ruling government because it has done so in the past, NOT just in 1953, with the overthrow of Mossadeqh, but throughout the 1970s, when Nixon & Kissinger policies harmed Iran’s economy.

    Thus, it’s unclear whether “raising the price of oil” would act as a deterrent to Western — and Saudi & Israeli powers eager to undermine Iran, or would once again boomerang to harm Iran in just the ways that the Western powers desire.

    One bright light, however, is Ahmadinejad’s actions that removed subsidies. A prevailing theory among Western observers is that “authoritarian” governments — a characteristic ascribed to Iran’s government — hold on to power by paying off their cronies and/or citizens, by providing subsidies, etc. For example, Hillary Clinton has stated that the Syrian “revolution” was limited to poor Syrians, but Assad was still supported by the middle class and elite. She, therefore, plotted to undermine the middle class & elites so that Assad’s support would be eroded. It appears to be working in Syria. But Ahmadinejad did not follow the script! He confounded the best laid plans of mice and Clinton; he placed his trust in the Iranian people and removed the subsidies.

  247. Karl says:

    Iranians being trained on the S-300 in Russia according to the dubious debkafiles.


  248. kooshy says:

    masoud says:
    November 13, 2011 at 2:22 pm

    “This put a smile on my face:”

    “Report: Iranians Fleeing, Fearing Israeli Attack.”

    That means its working as originally intended, or you may just consider this as an Israeli style Sunday morning joke cracked for Iranians going to work

    In these last few weeks it seems that the regime in occupied Palestine has adopted a new defensive posture with regard to the region, this new posture is cracking jokes. It might turn to be effective knowing that the region can use some hummer

  249. Empty says:

    James Canning,

    RE: What reason is there to produce more 20% U?

    What do you think some potential reasons could be? Could you think of any?

  250. Empty says:


    I have no verifiable evidence to offer. If I provide any alternative theory at this time, you should definitely be as critical about my story.

  251. Karl says:


    This was what I though of. Best were to check IAEA obligations as stated earlier:

    “Although the agency will submit the documents to the Islamic Republic, considering the Green Salt Project, experiments of high explosives and carrying missiles with returning abilities, it will also keep them with itself. ”

  252. Karl says:


    I am confident that IAEA must disclose the documents. I actually read that on some site previous days but I cant remember which site it were…, it was a quotation from either IAEA regulations, NPT or the Additional Protocol. Check those documents.

  253. masoud says:

    This put a smile on my face:

    Report: Iranians Fleeing, Fearing Israeli Attack.

    I mean, these people are just shameless. How do you say ‘projection’ in Hebrew?

  254. Cyrus_2 says:

    From Iran Review:

    The Iranian envoy to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has demanded the disclosure of verifiable documents on the alleged diversion in Iran’s nuclear activities by the global regulatory body.

    More: http://iranreview.org/content/Documents/Iran_Demands_IAEA_to_Present_Alleged_Files.htm
    Is the IAEA obliged to present Iran the original documents (mostly from the “laptop of death”, I suspect)?

  255. James Canning says:


    Yes, Karl was interested in details of the contract, delivery or non-delivery.

  256. James Canning says:

    Mehdi Sanaei of the Iran-Russia Parliamentary Friendship Committee told PressTV this past August that the Iranian complaint (for non-delivery of S-300) was filed in Paris before International Court of Arbitration. Iran paid US $166.8 million up front in 2005.

  257. Karl says:


    What in his statement regarding the bombings is he wrong then? That must mean you know the facts? That is, what actually happend?

  258. James Canning says:


    There does not seem to be any dispute that at least some Iranians in fairly high positions favor building nukes. Even if the leadership has no such intentions.

    What reason is there to produce more 20% U?

  259. Empty says:

    James Canning, I think the s-300 comment was meant for Karl….

  260. Empty says:

    James Canning,

    RE: Do you think it is accurate for IAEA report to suggest Iran may be trying to get closer to the ability to build nuclear weapons quickly?

    The report does not offer any reliable method for that assessment. So, I cannot examine the accuracy and comment on it. Do you know if they connected Iran’s decision makers to some lie detection machine and when they asked about their intentions, the brain signals went off the chart?

  261. James Canning says:


    Try “Russia surprised by Iranian S-300 legal complaint” (AFP Aug. 25, 2011)


  262. James Canning says:


    Isn’t Iran engaged in litigation with Russia to recover the payments made for the S-300 systems? On grounds of breach of contract (non-delivery).

  263. James Canning says:

    Tom Engelhardt has some interesting comments about G W Bush’ Iraq War catastrophe (“An All-American Nightmare”):


  264. Empty says:


    I agree with you that the site does have a lot of useful information and Silverstein has written several critical pieces. In this particular case, he is mistaken. However, he appears to be “taking in” the story and insist on his theory based on a fallacy. The only evidence to back up his theory (for which not even 24 hours has passed), he is explaining that his anonymous source is reliable and has been correct in the past. It is therefore, based on this principle that he insists his source is correct about this story. I would say one of the following is happening:

    1. Siverstein himself has taken the “cover of truth” to feed (gradually and effectively) “grains of falsehood” at critical junctures (I do not have enough evidence to believe this is true).

    2. His anonymous and “reliable” source is engaged in some counter intelligence work or mistaken.

    Therefore, it behooves Silverstein to offer valid and reliable evidence to back up his claim or wait until reliable and verifiable evidence surfaces.

  265. Karl says:

    I searched a bit on S-300 and Iran and there are apparently lots of rumours out there.
    Russia, Croatia, Belarus have been rumoured to have made a deal with Iran regarding the missiles in secrecy.
    Do you think there is any truth to it? Might Iran actually have the S-300 in possession?

    Iran has often criticized Russia for not deliver the S-300 and have said they have built their own model.

    Here is a link to a croatian newspaper that began to spread the story some years ago (translate it through google).

  266. James Canning says:


    Crucial element in US-USSR relationship was Kennedy’s agreement in late 1962 that the US would refrain from invading Cuba or helping anyone else to invade Cuba.

    We should remember her that the US and Soviet Union maintained diplomatic relations and that the Soviet ambassador was highly regarded in Washington (at time of Cuban Missile Crisis).

  267. James Canning says:


    He had a good comment. Do you think it is accurate for IAEA report to suggest Iran may be trying to get closer to the ability to build nuclear weapons quickly?

  268. James Canning says:


    You are quite right to link a nation’s strength with its economic might. Which means a country will grow in power, militarily, if its economy grows. Economic strength is hugely important. Look at the situation the gov’t of Syria finds itself in, due in large part to lack of cash.

  269. Empty says:

    Re, the topic of the thread, I thought Larijani, the head of Majlis, had the best soundbite about the IAEA report: “after being in labor for a week, the agency’s report was stillborn.” (translation)

  270. Karl says:


    Whats wrong with silverstein? I think his blog is very valuable and therefore his sources.

  271. James Canning says:


    With China pursuing a robust capitalism, even hyper-capitalism, is there much reason to see capitalism as failing (in style of collapse of communism)? Communism produced poverty for the masses, with wealth a prvilege for the few at the top.

  272. James Canning says:


    Perhaps using a photo of Ahmadinejad to focus attention on an article owes a good deal to marketing issues rather than content? I think the Guardian is rather sceptical about the “plot to kill Sauid ambassador”.

  273. Empty says:

    Clint says:

    November 13, 2011 at 9:29 am – I hope this in not true: maybe Mossad behind attack on Iran base??

    That story is not correct and the “reliable Israeli source” appears to be feeding false information (anonymously) to a willing Swollowerstein. Surely the Israeli/US folks cannot be that desperate to appear as if they were succeeding in some areas at least?

  274. James Canning says:


    You said you are a “Lutheran”. But what kind? Some Lutherans are Evangelical Christians. (This is not to say that all Evangelical Christians are fantatical “supporters” of Israel.)

  275. James Canning says:

    Mohammad-Uossein Farhangi of Iranian parliament asks, rhetorically, what benefit is conferred on Iran by remaining in NPT.

    “Leaving NPT moe advantageous”

    Neocon warmongers in US would love to see Iran pull out of NPT instead of causing embarassment to Israel and its stooges in US Congress by pointing out Israel’s failure to sign NPT.

  276. James Canning says:


    The contract between Iran and Russia provides for Russia to supply the nuclear fuel for Bushehr # 1 through 2015. Are you implicitly arguing that Iran should breach that contract, so that Iran would have a use for the 5% U it has produced?

    Since Iran has no use for the extra 20% U is is producting, that production is apparently for purposes of obtaining the emotional satisfaction arising from “defiance” of “the west”. Or, making it easier in future to enrich to weapons-grade. Which of course is precisely what agitates Saudi Arabia.

  277. Karl says:

    Brill – “However difficult the US makes life for Iran, there is virtually nothing Iran can do to change that. Iran should focus on other countries, and pay just enough attention to the US to keep the US from attacking Iran – if that is possible – until Iran has become sufficiently strong, either all by itself or in alliance with other countries, that it can ignore the US more and more and more. Only when Iran can afford to ignore the US to a very great extent, and the US recognizes this, do I foresee any hope for the change in US government attitudes necessary for any “grand bargain” to be reached between the two countries”

    I dont see how this could happend.

    1. US and their allies wont accept a strong Iran and it will get bombed before that could happend. They would also block any attempt by Iran to gain power in the middle east with its neighbours and also outside of the region.

    2. Iran is isolated. Which means it wont be able to boast up their defence system (the S-300 deal is a prime example). A strong nation economically and military means trade with other, since sanctions, boycotte of Iranian companies etc are imposed for every day that goes Iran wont get stronger in terms of economy and military.

    3. There is simply no alliance that Iran could join that means US wont attack them. China have for example a good relationship with Pakistan, but at the same time we are hearing ratching up rhetoric by america against pakistan leadership. And US are provoking China outside their waters and so on. That means that even if Iran had the support by the second most powerful nation (China) that wouldnt scare america off Iran. There is no counter US/NATO alliance today, pretty just because world have become ‘too’ globalized, China and US have become closer and their economy rest on each other. Also there is no nations either want or have the power to counter US hegemony.

  278. I don’t have time now to read through the entire debate on ArmsControlWonk, but it does look like they gave Arnold quite a bit of space, and that his and other posts are very well worth reading carefully.

    I do note one suggestion for censorship of Arnold’s words (“string of colonies”), from a commenter who courageously identified himself as “Anonymous:”

    “String of colonies? Jeffrey, surely you can moderate this type of statement?”

  279. Clint says:

    Or repeat these:


    following excerpts from that article:


    “It’s very thin, I thought there would be a lot more there,” says Robert
    Kelley, an American nuclear engineer and former IAEA inspector who was
    among the first to review the original data in 2005. “It’s certainly old
    news; it’s really quite stunning how little new information is in there.”

    The 2005 laptop documents focus on three areas: a so-called “green salt
    project” to provide a clandestine source of uranium; high-explosives
    testing; and reengineering a Shahab-3 missile to fit a nuclear warhead.

    News reports at the time indicated deep skepticism, when some of the laptop
    contents were first shown to diplomats accredited to the IAEA. In many
    quarters, doubt still persists. Recognizing such skepticism, one portion of
    the IAEA report was devoted to addressing the credibility of the
    information. But Mr. Kelly, the former IAEA inspector who also served as a
    department director at the agency, remains unconvinced.

    “The first is the issue of forgeries. There is nothing to tell that those
    documents are real,” says Kelley, whose experience includes inspections
    from as far afield as Iraq and Libya, to South Africa in 1993.

    “My sense when I went through the documents years ago was that there was
    possibly a lot of stuff in there that was genuine, [though] it was kind of
    junk,” says Kelly. “And there were a few rather high-quality things” like
    the green salt document: “That was two or three pages that wasn’t related
    to anything else in the package, it was on a different topic, and you just
    wondered, was this salted in there for someone to find?”

    It would not be the first time that data was planted. He recalls 1993 and
    1994, when the IAEA received “very complex forgeries” on Iraq that slowed
    down nuclear investigations there by a couple of years.

    “Those documents had markings on them, and were designed to resemble Iraqi
    documents, but when we dug into them they were clearly forgeries,” adds
    Kelley. “They were designed by a couple of member states in that region,
    and provided to the Agency maliciously to slow things down.”

    In 2002, notes Kelley, the IAEA also dealt with “pretty bad” forgeries done
    by the Italians, on Iraq’s supposed nuclear links to Niger, that the CIA
    picked up and used for the Bush administration’s case for war in Iraq.

    For Kelley, formerly with the IAEA, the current Iran report is a “real
    mish-mash” that includes some “amateurish analysis.”

    Among several technical points, Kelley notes the report’s discussion of
    Iran’s “exploding bridge-wire detonators,” or EBWs. The IAEA report said it
    recognizes that “there exist non-nuclear applications, albeit few,” and
    point to a likely weapons connection for Iran.

    “The Agency is wrong. There are lots of applications for EBWs,” says
    Kelley. “To be wrong on this point, and then to try to misdirect opinion
    shows a bias towards their desired outcome…. *That is unprofessional.*”

  280. Clint says:

    If you want to post on armscontrolwonk, choose a western name and be very polite and try to repeat the good arguments made here:


  281. Masoud,

    Another comment on the “Saudi ambassador plot” story.

    I noticed that the Guardian article I cited shows a photo of Ahmadinejad delivering a speech, naturally leading the reader to conclude that Ahmadinejad was speaking about the “Saudi ambassador plot.” That indeed is what I concluded, and is one reason why I had believed that “high Iranian government officials” had explicitly addressed the US charges.

    After you insisted that Iran’s response was delivered at much lower levels, I reread that Guardian article and noticed that it nowhere claims that Ahmadinejad was addressing the “Saudi ambassador plot” in that speech. The Guardian undoubtedly hoped and expected that most readers would link the photo with the subject matter of the story, and obviously the Guardian succeeded with at least one reader (and probably most other readers). But I certainly agree there’s not much Iran can do about that.

  282. BiBiJon says:

    Eric A. Brill says:
    November 13, 2011 at 10:27 am

    On the question of deterrence, while I confess to know south of nothing about military affairs, I think Iran probably does have an unconventional deterrent, and I assume she knows it and the US knows it, because over the years a great many windows of opportunity have come and gone, and I have to exclude Iran-US mutual adoration as the reason for not taking up any of these chances.

    Deterrence, of course, is a an ace of last resort. For example US, and the Soviets despite their formidable deterrence did not shy away from threatening one another and indirectly help killing plenty of each other’s troops in Afghanistan and Vietnam, etc.

    Iran’s deterrence is not and will never be nuclear weapons. But, it could be as simple as announcing all empty container ships must stop at an Iranian port for inspection/certification. Otherwise they could be mistaken for as illegal-combatant vessels in a war zone and shot at on their way back to the Indian Ocean. Just that announcement, without firing a shot, will raise up oil prices, I’m sure.

    This of course does not stop US or Iran playing all manner of deadly games with one another just as anything other than all out war was fair game between the US and Soviets.

    US has reason to believe that just like the Soviets, Iran can be made to implode. Iran I guess similarly anticipates the capitalist system not to last much longer. Possibly, they are both wrong, and they are both doomed to expend precious resources ‘annoying’ one another for many decades to come.

  283. Sineva says:

    Yes sadly it seems that armscontrolwonk is well on its way to resembling the wonk version of stategypage.com,very sad,still it was very funny to see some of the mental gymnastics that a couple of the posters had to go through to rationalise not answering Arnolds questions so they didn`t wind up looking like total hypocrites or worse pro zionist douche bags

  284. Rehmat says:

    ADL: ‘Abortion is not Holocaust’

    Abe Foxman, national director Anti-Defamation League (ADL), a powerful Israel lobbying organization has slammed the movie “180″ as being anti-Semitic. “Not only does the film try to assert a moral equivalency between the Holocaust and abortion, but it also bring Jews and Jewish history into the discussion and then call on its viewers to repent and accept Jesus as their Savior,” claimed Abe Foxman…..


  285. Clint says:

    NYTimes spins Iran IAEA report:


    ignores critical analysis of report — look at this report from PBS Frontline’s website:


    “With the exception of a few new twists, the allegations made by the IAEA in its latest report are not new.”

    I think what we will see next week is the attitude “well, we have reined in Israel from bombing so let’s ‘compromise’ with only some new ‘crippling’ sanctions”

  286. Clint says:

    Does Arnold have a blog? link?

  287. Irshad wrote:

    “Anyway, Arnold, I hope you can put up what you have said over there on your blog site for all to see and read.”

    I’ll second that, Arnold.

  288. Masoud and BiBiJon,

    I will don an even scratchier hair shirt in my contrite response to your disagreement with my arguments about Iran’s reaction to the “Saudi ambassador plot” story.

    I believe Iran’s tough attitude toward US exaggerations and provocations indeed have made it tougher for war-mongers in the US to marshal support for an attack on Iran. Even though Iran doesn’t possess nuclear weapons, many Americans – and Israelis more so, I suspect – understand that a hail of even non-nuclear missiles can hurt quite a bit. (Nonetheless, if I were Iran, I’d watch carefully the line between “toughness” and “provocation,” since few if any US politicians can afford to back down from what’s perceived as a “challenge” from Iran, and US hawks seize every opportunity to recharacterize Iranian toughness as provocation.)

    Back to the positive side of Iran’s “toughness,” I would draw an important distinction here between Iran and Libya, whose military posed no threat at all to the US. It seems to me that, on the question of insulating oneself from US attack, too many who write here and elsewhere believe the only meaningful dividing line is between countries that have nuclear weapons (North Korea, for example) and those who don’t (Iran). While it’s true that the US hasn’t attacked North Korea, I’m not at all sure I’d attribute that to North Korea’s possession of nuclear weapons. I suspect the principal reasons are that (1) even South Korea, the ally we’re ostensibly protecting over there, has asked us to stay out of it; and (2) at least a few US leaders recognize that we can’t afford to fight wars everywhere – especially on fronts from which we’d inevitably run away with our tail between our legs the moment China grumbles loudly that we should stay out of its neighborhood.

    Before one concludes that membership in the Nuclear Weapons Club exempts a country from US attack, perhaps we’d better ask Pakistan about its recent experience – if it can dodge US predator drones long enough to talk with us. I don’t think Pakistan’s nuclear weapons have made a dime’s worth of difference in the US’ attitude toward it. A tough stance such as Iran, without relying at all on a veiled threat of nuclear retaliation, probably would work much better for Pakistan (on the unreasonable assumption, of course, that Pakistan could credibly take such a tough “conventional weapons” stance, which it can’t).

  289. Irshad says:

    I too was suprised Arnold Evans was 1. Allowed to ask those questions and 2. Allowed to give a long answer back explaining why he thought most of them were against Iran’s latent nuke capability. (If anyone has not followed it, please go to armscontrolwonk, have a read and leave your thought).

    Since Jeffrey has banned you, Anon, FSB and others, its become a talkshop of the ‘Ayran got secret nuke’ society, consisting mainly of middle aged, white anglo-saxons. Any dissenting views that goes aginst their consensus is not tolerated. Atleast then they would not have made an ass out of themselves over the Al-Hasaka fiasco and now the Danilenko affair. You see how quiet the wonks have gone since the relwase of the IAEA comical report? I wonder why! They want to see the whole Iran nuke programme out of any context or background. They fail to mention or take into account the effect Saddams use of WMD on Iran with the acquiesce of certain Western countries, or. The use of missles to bomb IRanian cities, etc. Maybe instead of wasting time on google map looking for what other large box they can find in another Arab or Muslim country, they spend that time reading up on the IRan-Iraq war (any bools you reccomend?).

    Anyway, Arnold, I hope you can put up what you have said over there on your blog site for all to see and read.


  290. Karl says:
    November 13, 2011 at 6:15 am

    You wrote (citing a Haaretz article):

    “The warmongering obama tries to persuade Russia on Iran. He may have succeeded unfortunately.”

    I’m not sure how you reached such a negative conclusion about Russia, for whom I’ve sensed a new backbone growing lately. I would ignore what Obama said, none of which referred to specific future agreement with Russia, and focus on what Medvedev actually said about his meeting with Obama:

    “We agreed to continue a search for possible solutions, though we understand that our positions remain far apart,” he said.

    It does appear that the US is dangling yet another carrot for Russia — this time, admission to the World Trade Organization — and so I acknowledge that it remains to be seen whether Russia will sell Iran down the river yet another time. But I think if Medvedev were leaning toward caving in yet again, he probably would have left off the last half of his sentence quoted above.

  291. Fiorangela says:

    Karl, I agree; it is important that advocates for justice and reason in US foreign policy use every opportunity to push back against demonization of Iran.

    Several years ago, I heard one of the Zogby brothers address a conference of Arab-Americans, urging them to organize and speak out to represent and defend the interests of their constituency. He urged the group to observe and imitate the tactics and strategy of Israel lobby groups; after all, they are successful.

    When Israel lobby leaders sponsor advocacy training seminars, they tell their audience that it only takes three or four calls to a congressperson’s office to make the point. Israel lobbyists seldom engage in street protests, etc.; they write write write and write some more, and they place speakers at media outlets where bang-for-buck is maximized — C Span is increasingly dominated by Israelists. The US electorate absorbs information in “narratives” — stories that dramatize the human impact on the “me” who is listening. Put your facts and arguments into a story that has impact on the person/s you are addressing; lather, rinse, repeat repeat repeat.

    It is my belief that Iran advocates have equal talent and passion, they just don’t have the decades of experience/self-confidence, or the inner dynamic of self-promotion. It’s a learned skill; you wanna make a difference, you gotta make the effort.

    Remain calm, be reasonable, articulate your (pro-Iranian) position in a way that makes it advantageous for your target audience to endorse the position you wish he/she/they would adopt.

    Frank Gaffney was on C Span Washington Journal this morning doing what Gaffney does best — lie. I’m a hyper-reactive, hair-on-fire kinda person It’s an Italian thing. I’m working on it. My self-assigned ‘therapy’ this morning was to frame a response to Gaffney in a positive, pro-Iran way. Several things that Gaffney said can be turned against him and made into a positive endorsement for US engagement with Iran. The most notable statement Gaffney made is that US cannot afford to close US bases in Korea, Japan, Germany, because those soldiers would then have to be based in the US, requiring expenditures to create bases for them in the States.

    In a situation where US citizens and their leaders are clamoring for jobs, and deeply upset that US employment opportunities have been sent overseas, why does Gaffney consider it a “problem” to invest in places where US military can work in the United States?

    In the Washington Journal segment preceding Gaffney’s appearance, the audience was invited to opine on Obama’s statement that “China’s growth should be encouraged.” Callers managed to turn that conversation –as well as Gaffney’s 30 minutes of infamy– into multiple endorsements for US alliance with and continued support for Israel. I suggest pointing out how such a position is misguided by emphasizing a potential positive side of the issue.

    For example:
    -Advocates for Iran should arm themselves with some hard, cold facts: Iran has 70 million citizens, a large percentage of whom are under 35 — in their peak consumption years. You business majors out there — can you translate that demographic in dollar-potential in US trade and export to Iran? Can you translate those US dollars spent marketing TO Iran into thousands-of-jobs units/sound bytes?

    Herman Cain represents himself as a businessman. Why is Herman Cain eager to ignore that market of potential consumers of US exports?

    -Do you live in a Boeing state? Iran desperately needs civilian aircraft. Boeing needs people to BUY Boeing aircraft. Isn’t that what a market is? Why isn’t the US State Department organizing a trade delegation to sell US civilian aircraft to Iran?

  292. Wilbur says:
    November 13, 2011 at 6:06 am

    Thanks for your response. As I said, my view is that you’re a great addition to this site but that you’ll add more if you take into account the comments I and a few others have made. No need to accept all of our criticism or advice, of course. Some of us are also bundles of contradictions, if one looks closely, just as you confess to being. Just think about some of our comments carefully and I’ll be satisfied.

    That said, if you don’t follow everyone’s helpful suggestions to the letter, you probably should prepare yourself for a gentle reminder every now and then.

  293. Masoud and BiBiJon,

    I’m persuaded by your responses that Iran’s reaction to the “Saudi ambassador plot” was not excessive, but rather just right under the circumstances. Too much is not good, but too little is also not good, and on further thought I do think you’re both correct that Iran’s reaction was right where it should have been.

  294. Karl says:

    I would urge people to be active to comment on blogs, news sites etc because it is there where we could counter the warmongering, anti-Iranian, lying types of person. There is also the average citizen that are too ignorant to belive anything but what their MSM tells them so this group of people should be ‘learned’ whats correct or not about the nuclear issue.

  295. Karl says:

    The warmongering obama tries to persuade Russia on Iran. He may have succeeded unfortunately.

  296. Karl says:


    Regarding the bombs yesterday (and also murders, assassinations and bombings earlier), I find it somewhat strange that IRGCC that have connection throughout the middle and from what I understand good intelligence services, doesnt nab those culpable. I am sure they have spies inside MEK camps and other dissident groups.

  297. Wilbur says:

    To those who responded to my posts,

    Thank you for the replies. I have read them and it is apparent I was poking a stick in the proverbial hornets nest. Yes the bulk of my views diverge from most who post on RFI, but to Eric’s point I think it’s healthy to hear such views even though you might disagree. As for my responses I will get back to each of you but have been tied up with a project at work consuming almost all of my time. I will also try to be more concise, coherent, and grammatically correct when penning my posts(which means not using my iPad and having to deal with this infernal auto correct.)

    In closing a special note to those who think I am an Evangelical Christian. I am a Lutheran who from time to time is known to bother God, can still shot gun a beer, has gotten pulled over doing 205 mph, unlike Clinton actually inhaled (albeit only 4 or 5 times), has a mother who is a reformed hippy, identifies Rush/Alice in Chains/Tool as his favorite bands, and as many have noticed a walking paradox full of opinions!

    Cheers and a good weekend to all,


  298. Karl says:

    Russia keen on closer ties with Iran


    I think Russia made a huge mistake by not giving Iran the S-300. The defensive system would have atleast reduced israeli and american war threats alot if not ending them all together.
    S-300 is a defensive system, its a violation of the UN charter because every nation have the right to defend themselves.

  299. BiBiJon says:

    James Canning says:
    November 12, 2011 at 3:53 pm

    “You probably are aware Russia is supplying all nuclear fuel for Bushehr #1 through 2015. Zero need for 3.5% U from Iran. Zero.”

    James, say no more! By extension one could argue Iran can just buy electricity from Russia, and food, and medicines, and fertilizer, and …

    I am not certain how you imagine a decades long project for setting up 20 power plants is supposed to unfold. Iran is taking a series of cautious steps in mastering the technology. Along the way modest amounts of LEU inevitably is produced. It is stored in IAEA-sealed barrels.

    At the next tory conference, please ask William Hague how Iran is supposed to turn on the lights in 10 years time without any preparatory steps?

  300. hans says:

    Rehmat says:
    November 12, 2011 at 8:08 pm

    After their success in devouring Libyan people, the Zionist vultures are now preying upon Iranian people as their next victims.

    You keep forgetting your Iranian government supported from day 1 the rats and bigots. You are now worried about what will happen to Iran. If you have bigots you will always support bigots!

  301. BiBiJon says:

    Eric A. Brill says:
    November 12, 2011 at 9:40 pm

    I am all for quiet dignity in personal affairs, let alone matters of state. But, I would not rush to judge Iran’s responses to various US allegations as an over-reaction.

    It is possible that to a Sunni audience, a robust denial and a counter accusation is the least Iran is expected to do.

    Dignifying US accusations with a hearty reply, may be a way of reminding the US of her storied stature among nations — an underhand way of signalling respect for US in order to encourage her to show some self-respect with her next accusation.

    Perhaps Iran judges the US’ vanity such that a non-response could trigger even more petulance — better to lance the boil before it bursts.


    Of course, there is every chance that the cumulative effect of demonizing Iran may trigger an unproductive outburst from Iranian officials. But, having watched this for decades, I can tell you it really matters not how Iran responds, the accusations keep on comin.

  302. Lysander says:

    fyi says:
    November 13, 2011 at 1:33 am

    “A better time-frame will be the Iranian strategy in dealing with a post Alawite Syria.”

    Is it your assessment that the Assad regime will fall or are you just recommending Iran take precautions just in case?

  303. masoud says:

    but a Gholam Shakuri is in fact a high ranking member of the IRGC
    should read:
    but a Gholam Shakuri is in fact a high ranking member of the MEK

  304. masoud says:


    I think that link you posted is pretty much what I’m talking about. A letter is drafted by Iranian diplomats and passed to the Swiss interests section, denying the accusations Iran has been hit with. What in the world could be wrong with that? I guess maybe you think the demand for a public apology is over the line. I don’t think so. I don’t think it’s bad optic either, though we may disagree on that point. But how exactly is drafting that letter ‘raising the stakes’, as the leftist-leaning Guardian put it? This is a purposeful distortion. It’s a subconscious cue to readers that they should associate this story with the previous stories featuring Western diplomats who deliberated at length weather this ‘plot’ was carried out with or without the approval of Iran high political leadership(it’s a propaganda tactic that’s been so overused it’s become downright boring). The fact that Iran has now chosen to ‘raise the stakes’ is to be seen as evidence that the political leadership is in on it.

    The article goes on to state that Iran has chosen to ‘distance itself from the affair’ by ‘pointing the finger’ at a known terrorist group. First and foremost this a distortion of what Iran has said, which was that Gholam Shakuri, the supposed IRGC plain clothes general running Arbabsiar does not exist, but a Gholam Shakuri is in fact a high ranking member of the IRGC, and that Interpol has been provided with information that he has been issued with a US passport issued in Washington DC(Fars news report: ;http://english.farsnews.com/newstext.php?nn=9007270988). Secondly it’s information that, far from being a wild conspiracy theory, seems to have held up. Masoud Khodabandeh, a UK based, once-high ranking defector from the MEK has confirmed Gholam Shakuri’s membership in the MEK(see;http://iran-interlink.org/?mod=view&id=10958), and the US passport number has even been provided to the public so it’s an accusation that is relatively easy to refute.

    Now the question of who actually is behind this ridiculous plot aside, my question for you is that how is the drafting of this letter, and it’s delivery to the American interests section in the Swiss embassy to be seen as an over-reaction?

  305. Masoud,

    Thanks for the link to Dan Joyner’s article, which is quite useful. This passage is especially worth mentioning:

    “The IAEA is given no authority to inquire into or to examine activities within Iran that are not directly related to fissile materials, even if they may possibly relate to the development of a nuclear explosive device. Again, the IAEA has a limited legal mandate that does not include being a general nuclear weapons watchdog.”

    This is indisputably correct, as will become clear to anyone who reads the Non-Proliferation Treaty and Iran’s Safeguards Agreement.

    The IAEA nevertheless has spread its tentacles farther than Iran’s (or any country’s) Safeguards Agreement permits, to enforce signatories’ obligations under the Non-Proliferation Treaty itself — even though the NPT assigns no enforcement authority to the IAEA (or any other agency).

    It’s well worth noting how the IAEA has justified this. It argues that its mandate to enforce a Safeguards Agreement applies not only to declared nuclear material but also to undeclared nuclear material. This is correct. It then goes on to argue that, in order to determine whether a country has undeclared nuclear material, the IAEA is entitled to probe into any activities in which nuclear material might be used – essentially, “where there’s smoke there must be fire, and so we’re allowed to ask questions whenever we see smoke” (suspicious military activities, for example). The IAEA argues that, whatever it takes for it to feel comfortable that a country has no undeclared nuclear material, the country must provide that information. In practice, though an IAEA determination that a country has no undeclared nuclear material amounts to “proving a negative,” the IAEA nevertheless does agree with countries to make such a declaration if the country adopts and complies with the Additional Protocol (and, presumably, new Code 3.1) for a reasonable period of time. But this practice does not mean that the IAEA has authority to demand information from other countries – such as Iran – that decline to adopt these more extensive disclosure requirements.

    The hard-to-detect flaw in this IAEA argument is its premise that the IAEA is duty-bound to ascertain whether a country has undeclared nuclear material. That is not the case. If the IAEA is comfortable making a determination that the country does not have undeclared nuclear material, it can issue a finding to that effect. If it cannot make such a determination, however, it is NOT entitled to keep asking questions for as long as it sees fit until it feels comfortable making such a determination. Instead, a perfectly acceptable conclusion for the IAEA to reach is that it simply cannot determine one way or the other whether the country has undeclared nuclear material.

    The IAEA may also report its findings to the UN Security Council, which may then consider whether the country’s nuclear program is a “threat to the peace, breach of the peace, or act of aggression” and, if it so determines, take appropriate action under Chapter VII of the UN Charter. But the key point remains that the IAEA is NOT required to determine whether a country has or does not have undeclared nuclear material, and, for that reason, the IAEA is NOT warranted in asking questions for as long as it deems necessary to make such non-required determination.

    I think this point, among others, is clearly and strongly presented in the hypothetical “arbitration argument” of Iran in my “nuclear dispute” piece (see link at end), which I’ll reproduce here:


    Iran’s Arbitration Argument. Iran’s argument predictably would open with a focus on the text of its Safeguards Agreement:

    Iran’s Safeguards Agreement states clearly what it must do and may not do. That is what Iran agreed to – no more, no less – and it is in full compliance with its obligations.

    The IAEA learned in 2003 that Iran had made incomplete disclosures about its nuclear program during the last two decades of the twentieth century, ending in 2003. The IAEA did not claim that any of the activities involved had been prohibited by the NPT or Iran’s Safeguards Agreement[39] – only that Iran should have disclosed them. Even so, Iran’s disclosure violations were exaggerated by its critics. For example, despite numerous press reports that Iran had illegally concealed its Natanz and Arak facilities, the IAEA never agreed.[40] Nearly all of Iran’s disclosure violations involved a small amount of uranium (.13 effective kilogram, as measured under Iran’s Safeguards Agreement – 4.6 ounces) that Iran had purchased from China in 1991.[41]

    Over the next several years, Iran voluntarily answered hundreds of questions from the IAEA, permitted more extensive inspections than any other country in the world, and disclosed far more about its nuclear program than its Safeguards Agreement calls for. It still does. The IAEA eventually finished its investigation[42] and verified that Iran had not diverted any declared nuclear material. It has routinely verified the same thing in every report since then.

    Contrary to the IAEA’s assertions, it is not “required by the Safeguards Agreement… to verify that all nuclear material in Iran is in peaceful activities.”[43] It is required only to determine whether or not it can make such a verification, and to do so if it can. If it cannot, the IAEA has authority to take certain actions and make certain reports, and it must report to the Security Council, among others, if it finds Iran is in “non-compliance” with its Safeguards Agreement.

    Only once, in February 2006, has the IAEA reported Iran’s “non-compliance” to the Security Council. Although the IAEA Statute also required the IAEA Board to “call upon [Iran] to remedy forthwith any non-compliance which it finds to have occurred,” the IAEA Board did not do so – for a very good reason: Iran’s reported “non-compliance” was based entirely on disclosure violations that, according to the IAEA itself, had ended more than two years earlier.[44] Although those violations have led the IAEA to examine Iran much more carefully ever since, it has never found “non-compliance” based on Iran’s conduct of its nuclear program since 2003.[45] Instead, it misrepresents to the Security Council that Iran is “required” to take various actions that the IAEA itself acknowledges are entirely voluntary. The IAEA asks the Security Council to transform these voluntary steps into obligations by insisting that Iran’s long-ago disclosure violations now require it to provide whatever information, and to accept whatever restrictions, the IAEA deems necessary to verify the absence of undeclared nuclear material.

    The IAEA has no such authority under Iran’s Safeguards Agreement – nor does the Security Council or anyone else. Although the IAEA now insists it is unacceptable, indefinite uncertainty about undeclared nuclear material is not only an acceptable outcome under Iran’s Safeguards Agreement, but one that plainly was contemplated when the Agreement was drafted by the IAEA decades ago. Article 98(O), for example, explicitly excludes uranium “ore” from the definition of “nuclear material” that must be declared, and Article 33 states: “Safeguards under this Agreement shall not apply to material in mining or ore processing activities.” Such exclusions would never appear in an agreement whose purpose was to detect undeclared nuclear material. Undoubtedly that is why the IAEA sought to remove them when detection of undeclared nuclear material became important to the IAEA many years later. Article 2(v) of the Additional Protocol, for example, requires extensive disclosures about uranium mines.

    Iran’s obligations under its Safeguards Agreement may not be increased without its consent merely because the IAEA decided, many years later, to place greater emphasis on detecting undeclared nuclear material and devised a more burdensome inspection scheme to accomplish its new goal – including, for example, the Additional Protocol and revised Code 3.1. Much less does the IAEA’s belated emphasis on detection entitle it to venture even beyond the Additional Protocol to ask unending questions about the so-called “alleged studies” files delivered to the IAEA by third parties several years ago. As the IAEA itself acknowledges, even if those files were not entirely fabricated, none of them suggests that Iran has diverted or failed to declare nuclear material, the subject matter of Iran’s Safeguards Agreement. Although Iran nevertheless has answered many questions about those files, it is not willing – much less obligated – to reveal sensitive information about its conventional military capabilities merely because the IAEA considers this necessary to satisfy itself about the “alleged studies.”

    Iran does not dispute that it must declare its nuclear material as required under its Safeguards Agreement, and it has declared all of it. If the IAEA is not persuaded, Article 19 of Iran’s Safeguards Agreement requires it “to afford the Government of Iran every reasonable opportunity to furnish the [IAEA] with any necessary reassurance” that Iran has not diverted nuclear material to non-peaceful purposes. The IAEA has afforded many such opportunities to Iran since 2003, and Iran has availed itself of many of them. But Article 19 does not require Iran to continue accepting every opportunity the IAEA may choose to offer. At some point – and that point was reached long ago – Iran fairly may ask that the IAEA accept the same inescapable fact it has accepted for many other countries: No matter what more Iran might disclose, it can never prove that it has no undeclared nuclear material, just as no other country can ever prove this. For dozens of countries, the IAEA has concluded that it cannot determine whether undeclared nuclear material exists. It claims to have reached the same conclusion for Iran. Just as for other countries, such a determination does not mean that Iran has violated its Safeguards Agreement, nor does it give the IAEA a right to impose additional obligations on Iran.

    Iran’s Safeguards Agreement authorizes the IAEA to report certain matters to the Security Council, but it does not authorize the Security Council to enforce or interpret the Agreement. Only the IAEA,[46] and now this arbitration panel,[47] has that authority. Iran acknowledges that the Security Council may act under the UN Charter if it determines Iran’s nuclear program is a Peace Threat. When the Security Council next considers that threshold question, it should be told clearly what has been kept obscure in the past: Except for the parties’ Code 3.1 disagreement, the IAEA does not claim that Iran’s nuclear program has failed to comply with its Safeguards Agreement since late 2003, and Iran has no obligation to implement the Additional Protocol or to suspend enrichment or reprocessing. Nor, in Iran’s opinion, is it required to observe revised Code 3.1. The arbitrators should now decide who is correct and their binding decision should promptly be reported to the Security Council. If the arbitrators rule as we expect, the Security Council will be obliged to acknowledge that it has no basis for demanding that Iran do any of these things.



  306. Masoud,

    It was articles such as this one that caused me to conclude Iran over-reacted to the “Saudi ambassador plot” allegations. I’ll gladly be persuaded I’m drawing the wrong conclusion, but please take a look and let me know whether this changes your view.


  307. Unknown Unknowns says:

    fyi says, “… the Iranian strategy in dealing with a post Alawite Syria.”

    As I am sure you know, there is a LOT of bad blood between Iran and the Syrian branch of the Brethren, going back to 1980 (or 81?) when Hafez Asad slaughtered 10,000 of the Brethren and their supporters in Homs and the Islamic Republic sided with Asad.

    Its gonna be a tricky tightrope act for the Islamic Republic with the salafists, many of whom have become, thanks to the Wahhabistani poison, Takfiri.

  308. masoud says:

    I saw Arnold’s post earlier today. I was a little shocked Jeffery let it through. And is some ways, not so shocked he subsequently censored it. In a way though, I think that particular act of censorship goes above and beyond what I usually expect from armscontrolwonk. To anyone following that thread, it’s obvious that Arnold was censored purely for winning a debate that Jeffery had consciously approved to take place, as long as it looked like Arnold was going to lose. I hereby nominate Jeffery Lewis for the Juan Cole Medal For Excellence In Blogging.

    In other news, here’s Dan Joyner on the IAEA report:

  309. Masoud,

    You make some excellent points, but I do take exception to this part:

    “You were for a long time advocating that Iran should bend over backwards and accept exceptional measures placed on it by a politicized IAEA and Security Council, so as to avoid looking guilty…”

    What you’re calling “exceptional measures” can only refer to the Additional Protocol, which the vast majority of “nuclear” countries observe, or to the new version of Code 3.1, which every “nuclear” country except Iran observes.

    Neither is at all exceptional.

    My only point has always been that Iran would be well-advised to sign up for what other “nuclear” countries have signed up for. I recognize it did all that for a while and still was mistreated, and I’d be the last person to suggest that wasn’t unfair, or that Iran will still be singled out no matter what. Nonetheless, there are shades of gray, even for Iran’s relationship with the IAEA and the UN Security Council. Because Iran declines to observe either the AP or new Code 3.1, however justified it may feel in declining to do so, many people around the world think Iran is hiding something. As a result, when the IAEA or the UN Security Council demands also that Iran disclose information that they have no business asking Iran for – information about non-nuclear military matters, for example – Iran gets virtually no support at all from anywhere in the world.

  310. fyi says:

    masoud says: November 13, 2011 at 1:22 am

    You are wasting your time.

    Over the last 9 years I have closely followed Iranian external relations – including the nuclear case.

    I think I have read or viewed every major piece of analysis produced on the topic of nuclear Iran.

    Over a period of nine years, I never came across a presentation, discussion, or analysis that included a nuclear engineer on the topic of possible needs of Iran in the area of nuclear technologies.

    That is; no American, European, Chinese, Russian, or India engineer was ever present during discussions of Iranian nuclear case in order to shed some light on possible and probable needs of Iran for nuclear technologies.

    From the start, this was a tool for beating Iran back into line and linit or destroy her strategic autonomy.

    I also do not think it useful to discuss the nuclear case much; it is over, pretty much.

    A better time-frame will be the Iranian strategy in dealing with a post Alawite Syria.

  311. Photi says:

    Silverstein has now softened his language–

    Original headline:


    Current headline:



  312. masoud says:


    Instead, Iran offered all sorts of “counter-explanations,” and much of the world ended up believing that Iran had some sort of obligation to prove a negative

    I’m not sure exactly what you’re talking about here, what are the all sorts of of counter-explanations that “Iran has offered”? In any case, I’d like to point out that on the Nuclear issue, you had the exact opposite recommendation. You were for a long time advocating that Iran should bend over backwards and accept exceptional measures placed on it by a politicized IAEA and Security Council, so as to avoid looking guilty, and in the used-car-salesman case you view Iran’s addressing the allegations at any length(and here I think you are confused about what Iranian officials have actually stated) as indicative of it’s guilt. The basic lesson is, no matter what Iran does, biased media coverage in the US always make it look guilty to those who refuse to take the time to actually analyze things properly. That’s a lost demographic, and Iran shouldn’t waste time with them.

    As to your post on the Nuclear Issue, I’d have to say there’s nothing much I disagree with, but I do think that in the end, many of your formulations are problematic. How can one know,for example, that neutron sources have no civilian applications? Or highly synchronized hemispheric explosions? If a company is set up in Iran in order to produce nanodiamonds using high explosives, just how is it supposed to neuter itself to be sure that it never discovers anything that can have some kind of application to nuclear weapons? How is Iran supposed to train scientists that build and monitor power stations that run on controlled, stable, nuclear reactions, while at the same time keeping them in the dark about what an uncontrolled nuclear reaction looks like? How are they supposed to build these reactors without having very thorough theoretical and experimental knowledge of how far certain components can be pushed before an adverse reaction takes place? There are no firewalls in science, and the idea that Iran is to be expected to police what it’s vast scientific and engineering communities are up to in order to ensure none of it offends Uncle Sam is odious. Iran has committed not to manufacture a Nuclear Weapon, and to allow the IAEA to monitor it’s fissile material in order to confirm the same. It should be held to that standard, and strictly to that standard.

  313. Photi says:

    Unknown Unknowns,

    Let no man or woman be represented beyond his number. The Jews will lose in every way. Idiots.

  314. Unknown Unknowns says:

    Thanks for that, Photi. The ridiculous DebkaFile (a Mossad psyop organ) has the following headline:

    Iran loses its top missile expert in explosions sparked by failed bid to fit nuclear warhead on Shahab-3

    and if that didn’t tickle your funnybone, they have this absurdity:

    Iran Crosses the Threshold
    Nuclear-capable Shahabs were successfully tested – but left out of the IAEA report.

    And when you click on it, the site says that it is “Premium Content” and you must PAY for it! Only in Yahudistan… [If you could see me, I’m sitting here shaking my head back and forth with a big Cheshire Cat grin on my face .]

    When is enough, enough? I guess the Supreme Leader and the Commanders of the Joint Forces know best, but I mean if proportional responses to all these past atrocities are not forthcoming, they will just continue to ratchet them up indefinitely. We are already at war. Have been since day one. Methinks it is high time to spill some Jewish blood. Alright… Zionist blood. Happy? Like there’s any difference.

  315. Photi says:


    Richard Silverstein is claiming on his blog the explosion was a joint operation between MEK and the Mossad.

  316. BiBiJon,

    “The nuclear issue, in all its hues is a ruse, a pretext.”

    Then why does Iran always take the US bait and over-react? It certainly needs to deny the accusations that the US continually throws at it, but it almost invariably gets itself much more worked up than it needs to.

    In the “Saudi ambassador plot” story, for example (though I recognize it’s not nuclear-related), Iran should just have denied the accusation, firmly and unequivocally, challenged the US to produce evidence and announced confidently that it knew the US would be unable to do so, and then moved on. If and when the US did produce “evidence,” Iran could have firmly but calmly pointed out its insufficiency, repeated its denial, and once again moved on. The US news media were going to beat the story to death one way or another, but the world’s interest would have flagged much sooner if Iran had just dealt with it once and firmly and then moved on.

    Instead, Iran offered all sorts of “counter-explanations,” and much of the world ended up believing that Iran had some sort of obligation to prove a negative, which, of course, it did not and could not do. The very fact that the highest levels of Iranian government directly addressed the US allegations suggested to many people that the highest levels of Iranian government at least knew something about the plot, giving the absurd story a dignity it did not deserve.

    Suppose Iran had made a similar allegation against the US. Do you suppose Barack Obama would have gone on national TV to deny the allegations? Of course not. He would have left it to Hillary Clinton, who would have addressed the allegations firmly, once, and then handed off the matter to some subordinate, who would have scoffed at the allegations and challenged Iran to produce evidence.

    That’s what Iran should have done, and that’s what it should do next time. Would that have caused the US to drop the matter? Of course not. But it certainly wouldn’t have made it any worse.

    And it would have given the world the impression that, just maybe, what the US has to say about Iran is not necessarily as important to Iran as the US would like the world to believe it is.

  317. Unknown Unknowns says:

    Can anyone in Iran shed any light on what’s going on with the explosion in the IRGC ‘Amir ol-Mo’mineen’ barracks which killed its Commander and 30+ other IRGC guards?

    It seems something serious might have happened/ is happening. Apparently the Emergency Council met last night, etc.

  318. Arnold Evans says:


    Iran’s nuclear program again. I have to say there is nothing in your last post that I disagree with. Iran should certainly not go out of its way to deceive the US into thinking it has any nuclear capability it does not have.

    I went longer than usual at armscontrolwonk before my comments began to be deleted. One comment that was deleted I expanded into a post at my website.


    Writing-wise, I’m not happy with this paragraph:

    If Iran’s strategy is to accomplish legal nuclear weapons capability in order to undercut the rationale that has supported US efforts to prevent Iran from gaining nuclear power-generating technology that would be a valid and rational strategy. Later the US will be in a weaker position to pressure other countries from providing assistance and Iran will be able to get more nuclear technological assistance, if it needs it. This would be a sound reason for Iran to accomplish a state of legal nuclear weapons capability and to ensure that it never commits future generations to relinquish this capability beyond the intrinsic value of legal legal nuclear weapons capability itself.

    My basic argument there is that if the US is going to pressure foreign countries to withhold cooperation from Iran on the grounds that such cooperation might help Iran reach legal nuclear weapons capability, then that is just another reason Iran should reach that situation as quickly as possible, to remove that rationale for US pressure on other countries that could sell Iran technology it could use for its energy generating program.

    Give it a look. I don’t want to do that long back and forth argument thing we’ve done in the past, but maybe I define things more clearly than I had before.

  319. BiBiJon says:

    Eric A. Brill says:
    November 12, 2011 at 5:50 pm


    I think looking at Iran’s development through a broader lens might be useful.

    Iran is developing. Agriculture, medical, pharmaceutical, chemical engineering, space, military, education, urban development, construction, industrial, sciences of all kinds, etc, etc.

    What Iran is doing in any particular field is no different to her endeavors in all the other fields: bottom up, ingenious, self reliant, and interested in building capacity — breadth only when supported by adequate depth.

    Seen in this light I believe you would understand the average Iranian’s bemusement at all the fuss about Iran’s nuclear development. The rational for Iran is fairly obvious. Looking long-term, would you want to sell your oil at $100 p/b when 50 years from now, it might be worth a $1000? And, in a 100 years from now there may be none left no matter how much you’d want to pay.

    The nuclear issue, in all its hues is a ruse, a pretext. Pakistan’s Dr. Khan lifted the centrifuge designs from Belgium. Do you recall any raised eye brows at Belgium developing a nuclear capability?

  320. Karl,

    Whenever someone frames this issue, as you have, in terms of what, if anything, Iran can do to satisfy the US, I am always reminded of this exchange in Ayn Rand’s book, The Fountainhead. Ellsworth Toohey was an influential architecture critic who had taken it upon himself to destroy the career of Howard Roark, the book’s protagonist:

    ELLSWORTH TOOHEY: Mr. Roark, we’re alone here. Why don’t you tell me what you think of me in any words you wish.

    HOWARD ROARK: But I don’t think of you!

    Why, exactly, should Iran even bother trying to adapt its policies to what the US considers ideal – especially if, as you say and I agree wholeheartedly, nothing Iran can do is likely to satisfy the US?

    It must appear to you that my view is just the opposite. But if you read what I wrote more carefully, you’ll recognize that that is not at all the case. My only concession to US opinion is my suggestion that Iran not succumb to the temptation to “deceive” the US to believe Iran is developing nuclear weapons when it is not. That is not something I recommend because I believe Iran should try to make the US feel better. It is something I recommend to prevent Iran from getting bombed. Period. I recommend it only because I think (1) Iran will get “caught” (and bombed) if it actually tries to develop nuclear weapons; and (2) Iran will get bombed if it tries to deceive the US to believe it is developing nuclear weapons. Thus, if Iran does not want to be bombed by the US, it should neither (1) develop nuclear weapons; nor (2) deceive the US to believe it is developing nuclear weapons even though it is not.

    That’s it. Beyond that, I think Iran should ignore the US as much as it can, however difficult that may be to do, because I don’t see any near-term prospects for an improvement in US-Iran relations. Some optimists believe that some well-meaning, well-informed and wise person, sooner or later, will just sit the US government down, explain the errors of its ways, and persuade it to enter into some “grand bargain” with Iran that settles most or all of the open issues between the two countries. I find this naïve, almost utterly detached from the reality of US politics. In the foreseeable future, only one adjective will accurately describe a US President, Senator, Congressmen or Cabinet member who takes even one tiny step down this path: “former.”

    Iran should face the reality that it is not going to satisfy the US sufficiently to reach any “grand bargain,” or pretty much any “bargain” at all. If it can, and chooses to, achieve some tiny little agreements with the US on some narrow subject – perhaps restrictions on the import or export of rare butterflies, for example — fine, but that’s all Iran should expect for the time being. However difficult the US makes life for Iran, there is virtually nothing Iran can do to change that. Iran should focus on other countries, and pay just enough attention to the US to keep the US from attacking Iran – if that is possible – until Iran has become sufficiently strong, either all by itself or in alliance with other countries, that it can ignore the US more and more and more. Only when Iran can afford to ignore the US to a very great extent, and the US recognizes this, do I foresee any hope for the change in US government attitudes necessary for any “grand bargain” to be reached between the two countries.

    Until then, I think my approach has a distinct advantage: however limited its objective may be – essentially, keeping Iran from getting bombed, buying time – at least it has more than a snowball’s chance in hell of achieving that objective.

  321. Karl says:

    Eric Brill:

    Do you think US will accept any one of these alternatives?

    1. Enrichment for civilian use? – No US have urged Iran to stop enriching. Imposed sanctions etc.

    2. Nuclear weapons capability? – Of course not.

    3. Nuclear weapons? – Of course not.

    So, what conclusion leaves that us with? That it doesnt matter what Iran are doing. It doesnt matter that the IAEA dont find any hard evidence that Iran is doing nuclear weapons. US/Israel/UK wont accept it just like Iraq.

    World is not runned people that have a high moral, that never lies, that abide to descent conduct and law. Its runned by power, realpolitik by the only superpower and it stooges. The UNSC and IAEA is runned by american interests.

    It doesnt matter how nice, friendly, forthcoming Iran is. US and its allies will always say that Iran is “hiding”, is “deceptive”, “not serious” etc. The daily escalation is bound to explode in a military conflict which aim to topple the islamic government of Iran. Thats the main object US/Israel/UK etc have.

    Iran have reached out its hand so many times but it has ALWAYS been rejected with the often standard phrase “Iran is not serious, there offer is not credible, they just want to delay the issue” and so on.

    Just look at Iraq, they rejected the lack of evidence on WMD. Still they kept, like brainwashed people, forcing people to belive something there wasnt and started a occupation that lasted 8 years. US administration and the aipac-lobby that feeds them have already decided what to belive when they hear about Iran. US crossed the Rubicon years ago, their views on Iran will NEVER change.

    In their minds, post-Iraq war, they argue something like this: “who cares if there were lies to invade Iraq? Who is going to get us? We are the most powerful people on the earth!”.

    Remember what abram shulsky said, a neocon and a propagandizer for war with Iraq and Iran. He said:

    “”truth is not the goal” of intelligence operations, but “victory”.”

    The warmongering nations and groups will take any lies to reach their goals with Iran too. Make no misstake.

    The fact that Israel have nukes, Pakistan, India etc. The fact that US not deconstruct their own nukes according to NPT/IAEA but upgrade them proves that there is no justice, there is no law. So why would Iran be bound to such things (NPT) since they dont mean one iota in the end of the day?

    I dont think anyone should have nukes. But since Israel refuse to give up theirs there is inevitable that any other nation gets them for “mutual assured destruction”. History have showed that. When America got its nukes, Russia got them too. When India get their Pakistan followed. When South koreans experimented with nukes and while the threat from america followed, North korea began to experiment themselves. One cant stop that process, you are dead if you dont keep up with defence. Iran could only trust itself, it has no allies backing it up in case of war.

    Iran is are in a dilemma. Because it can keep enrich for civilian use and keep get their scientists murdered, their military command leaders kidnapped and killed, their civilian compoounds sabotaged with data virus, their army bases bombed, keep being isolated, keep being smeared, keep being threatend by Israel and eventually attacked.

    Or they could get nuclear capability and get isolated (for a temporary time), heavily sanctioned (even from Russia and China) and getting attacked by covert means by israeli intelligence (murder, kidnappings, sabotage etc). BUT they wont get attacked and that is the main focus – survival of the islamic republic.

    “Iran sees nuclear program as last line of defense against West, expert says”


    Remember what M.V. Creveld said:

    “The world has witnessed how the United States attacked Iraq for, as it turned out, no reason at all. Had the Iranians not tried to build nuclear weapons, they would be crazy,”

    Yes Iran would be crazy however as this is a dillema, Iran is viewed differently by the world oustide with power that wont allow Iran going the natural path to constructing a deterrence.

  322. James Canning says:


    Syrian gov’t is very short of cash. This is the single greatest problem. Suspension from AL obviously does not help the gov’t.

  323. James Canning says:

    Voice of Tehran,

    Dennis Ross was the wrong man for Obama to have selected. Small wonder, though, that Obama chose Ross. Priority is to please rich Democratic campaign donors.

  324. khurshid says:

    Arab League suspended Syria’s membership. Can anyone explain how will this effect syria and Basher’s regime? Also, does this mean US, EU, Israel, and arab puppet regimes are closer to damage syria and axis of resistance? If syria’s Basher falls how will it effect Iran’s regional standing?

  325. James Canning says:


    Could you clarify? Is UN discredited because Palestine was admitted to Unesco? Or because US is blocking full admission to UN? I think Unesco retains a high level of respect internationally.

  326. James Canning says:


    I continue to think the obvious approach, for the “west”, is to respond to Iran’s offer to cease production of 20% U. Approve the Iranian IAEA application.

    Idiot American politicians of both parties want to prevent iran from enriching uranium, even to 5% or lower. But British concerns center on the 20% U production (and fears aroused in Gulf countries as a direct result).

  327. Some readers will recall our lengthy and sometimes acrimonious “Japan option” debates of a year or more ago, much of it prompted by my rhetorical question:

    “Is a gun without bullets still a gun?”

    Much as I respect the Leveretts and usually agree with them, I’ve always suspected there may be an important difference in our views on Iran’s nuclear program. If so, I’m curious to know how many agree (or disagree) with me on this.

    Different parts of this passage from the Leveretts’ essay above are a good starting point for highlighting the difference:


    “In fact, no one has ever produced a shred of evidence that Iran has ever actually tried to build a nuclear weapon or taken a decision to do so.”

    [I find the preceding sentence important and good enough for me. It’s what follows that concerns me.]

    “… The [Non-Proliferation] Treaty prohibits the building of actual weapons. It does not prohibit signatories from studying nuclear weapons designs, or researching neutron initiators, or even conducting experiments on high-explosives of the sort that could be used in a bomb.

    Even if every single point in the IAEA’s report were absolutely, 100 percent true, it would mean that Iran is working systematically to master the skills it would need to fabricate nuclear weapons at some hypothetical point down the road, should it ever decide to do so. This is how we ourselves have long interpreted the strategic purposes of the Islamic Republic’s nuclear program — TO CREATE PERCEPTIONS ON THE PART OF POTENTIAL ADVERSARIES THAT TEHRAN IS CAPABLE OF BUILDING NUCLEAR WEAPONS IN A FINITE PERIOD OF TIME, WITHOUT ACTUALLY BUILDING THEM. As Baradei himself has pointed out, see here, having a “nuclear weapons capability” is not the same as having nuclear weapons.” (Emphasis added.)


    I agree with the facts stated about the NPT in this passage, and would add that the same can be said about Iran’s Safeguards Agreement. But I think Iran would be ill-advised to exploit the acknowledged “coverage gaps” in those two documents.

    My view is that Iran should proceed unapologetically to develop its peaceful nuclear energy program and its non-nuclear military capabilities – regardless of whether it learns things along the way that might also be useful to develop nuclear weapons. If other countries want to help, great. If they don’t, Iran should press forward on its own as best it can. If Iran is working on something that is “dual use,” it owes no one an explanation (assuming that no specific requirement in its Safeguards Agreement requires one). The burden is on others, and heavy, to establish that the alleged “dual use” item really has only one (prohibited) use. If all this makes the US, Israel and other countries nervous, so be it.

    But I would part company with the Leveretts (assuming I understand their views correctly – they may simply be describing their understanding of Iranian government policy, not necessarily expressing their agreement with it) if Iran does something that indisputably relates only to nuclear weapon development.

    I don’t suggest this has ever occurred. I doubt it has. But if it occurred, I would strongly oppose Iran’s engagement in that activity. (I acknowledge the inevitable “Well, what about Israel?” response, to which my reply is always the same: Like it or not, Israel has nuclear weapons and isn’t going to give them up; reasonable minds may differ on this, but I don’t think that’s reason enough for Iran, or any other country, to get nuclear weapons.)

    I would not complain if Iran achieved the same sort of “nuclear weapons capability” possessed by Japan (the usual example). But I interpret that “capability” to extend only to what a country learns in the course of working on something other than nuclear weapons –peaceful nuclear energy, for example, or conventional weapons. To my knowledge, Japan has never been suspected of “studying nuclear weapons designs, or researching neutron initiators.” No one doubts that its highly capable scientists could develop a nuclear weapon in fairly short order. Nonetheless, to my knowledge, Japan has never been suspected of trying. (Japan has drawn some suspicion at time – for its stockpiling of plutonium waste, for example – but it has always offered “peaceful” explanations that have satisfied nuclear watchdogs.) Some insist the US would look the other way if Japan ever engaged in research whose only objective could be to develop nuclear weapons, but this is speculation and I doubt it is correct. (Perhaps there is some small merit in the speculation, but such a US response would probably reflect, far more, the implausibility of any Japanese effort to build a nuclear weapon under the watchful eye of its powerful neighbor, China.)

    I certainly don’t suggest that the US, Israel or anyone else would be justified in attacking Iran merely because Iran provokes the US by engaging in activities not prohibited by the NPT or Iran’s Safeguards Agreement but which can have no objective other than nuclear weapon development. Quite the contrary. But I nevertheless feel the Iranian government would be foolish and irresponsible to behave in this way. Doing so would subject the Iranian people to a grave risk of attack by the US or Israel – justified or not. (On the off-chance that Iranian leaders are confident that the US and Israel will never launch an unjustified attack on Iran, Iran sorely needs new leaders who are not delusional.) Iran does and should complain about unfairness and double standards, but it should not risk the safety of its people by extending those protests to pointless provocation of the US.

    One of several usual rejoinders is: “Why should Iran bow to the dictates of the US?” I consider the following question to be a fair reply: “Why should Iran engage in activity merely to trick the US into believing it’s working on a nuclear bomb when it’s really not?” Either Iran is working on a nuclear bomb that it will never be able to finish and use without violating the NPT, or it is not but wants to deceive the US to believe that it is. The first is inappropriate; the second is very dangerous, and pointless because almost certainly it will not succeed.

    Even if one were to condone such trickery, it could achieve its presumed noble purpose – deterrence ¬– only if Iran could sustain it long enough to persuade the US government that Iran had passed the “point of no return,” so that an attack on Iran would pose an apparent (though not real) risk of nuclear retaliation. Is it realistic to expect that Iran could ever get this far, or even close, before the “bomb Iran” crowd in the US would win over enough skeptics for the US to launch a pre-emptive attack? Already, some US leaders and many opinion makers strongly favor attacking Iran, even though Iran probably is very far from deliverable nuclear weapons even if it is actually working on them. Indeed, as the Leveretts point out in the first sentence of the quoted passage above, “no one has ever produced a shred of evidence that Iran has ever actually tried to build a nuclear weapon or taken a decision to do so,” and yet many people believe the US is on the brink of attacking Iran, or at least should be. If the question is whether the US will launch a pre-emptive attack on Iran, which is more important – the fact that there is no “shred of evidence,” or the fact that very few Americans believe this?

    Fortunately, cooler heads have prevailed so far, but I am not confident that will continue if Iran actually tries to create the mistaken impression that it is developing nuclear weapons. Especially if Iran were to become so caught up in such an effort that it allowed the discovery of (or even leaked) apparent evidence of nuclear weapon development, my strong hunch is that US public opinion would promptly shift to strong support for an immediate attack on Iran. Even if Iran’s deception efforts were not quite this aggressive, a very high risk exists that US public opinion would back the “bomb Iran” crowd well before Iran could mislead the US to believe that Iran has passed the “point of no return.” Indeed, the closer the US believes Iran is to this point (or at least claims to believe – which may work just as well for those urging an attack), the greater will be the risk of attack.

    Bottom line: Iran should proceed unapologetically to develop its peaceful nuclear energy program and its non-nuclear military capabilities, and to learn whatever it can learn in the course of doing so. If that is all one means by “nuclear weapons capability,” I am all for it. But to do more than that – to exploit the acknowledged coverage gaps of the NPT and Iran’s Safeguards Agreement by attempting to persuade the US that Iran possesses, or is close to possessing, actual nuclear weapons, when that is not really the case, is to play with fire – pointlessly and with great risk to the Iranian people. Justified or not, the likely response to such a course of action, sooner or later, will be a pre-emptive US attack on Iran.

  328. Karl says:

    According to israeli news a high ranking IRGC leader died in the blast. Accident? Last year Israel attacked a missile base in Iran too.


  329. Fiorangela says:

    based upon comments on Haaretz, JPost and YNet, Israeli citizens crave the demise of United Nations.

    Maybe it’s an Oedipus Complex with a twist — Israel seeks to kill its father, United Nations, which legitimized Israel’s birth in 1948; and, um, desires to screw have illicit relations with its mother, the United States, which nurtures and suckles it.

  330. paul says:

    Well said, Canning. The fact that the US routinely uses the UN to smooth the way to war has nothing to do with the fact that people now recognize that it is a hopelessly discredited institution.

  331. Voice of Tehran says:


    Yeah, right. The “more time for the family” excuse which is regularly used when people in the officialdom get fired. It never really passes the basic smell test.

    A Middle East envoy to three presidents, Mr. Ross, 62, is known for his painstaking approach to diplomacy and longstanding ties to Israeli leaders, which made him an important interlocutor with Israel behind the scenes, but also stood in stark contrast to the bolder instincts and more distant approach of his boss.

    “Painstaking approach” somehow fits. Ross was known as “Israel’s lawyer” and never minded any murder provided it was done to Israel’s favor.

    That the Obama administration gave him a job was a sure sign that stupid and damaging moves in Israel’s favor would follow. As they did.

    As the NYT writes “Mr. Ross was also involved in devising the administration’s pressure tactics against Iran”. He certainly was and the tactics he advised to follow FAILED.

    Good riddance. If only 20 years too late.

    And here is the beef that gives me the hunch that this firing is related to the IAEA dud. As usual in Middle East issues the NYT buries the lead at the end of the story.
    Mr. Ross was also involved in devising the administration’s pressure tactics against Iran, after Mr. Obama’s initial overtures fell flat. Tensions with Iran have risen in recent days because of a report by the International Atomic Energy Agency laying out evidence that Iran has continued to work on a nuclear weapon.

  332. James Canning says:


    You must be joking if you think France, Germany and the UK want to wreck the UN. Yes, idiot Republican politicians, and some foolish Democrats too, in the US, dislike the UN because it does not toe the Aipac line on Israel/Palestine.

  333. James Canning says:


    You probably are aware Russia is supplying all nuclear fuel for Bushehr #1 through 2015. Zero need for 3.5% U from Iran. Zero.

  334. James Canning says:


    For William Hague and the FCO, Iran’s enriching to 20% is taken as strong evidence at least some Iranian leaders are getting ready to push for further enrichment to 95%.

    If Irran ceases production of the 20% U, a good deal of pressure on Britain will be alleviated.

  335. James Canning says:


    Iran has sufficient 20% U on hand to re-fuel the TRR for years to come (assuming the rods can be produced).

    Iran offered to cease production of the 20% U in recognition of the huge degree that production was exploited to seek to show Iran was getting ready to enrich to weapons-grade.

  336. James Canning says:


    By “career civil servants” are you referring to the UK or the US? In Britain, the ministries remain intact even if the gov’t changes. But in US, wholesale replacement in the norm.

  337. BiBiJon says:

    James Canning says:
    November 12, 2011 at 1:50 pm

    “Do you think Iran actually is thinking of enriching U to weapons-grade? What is your opinion of Iranian offer to cease production of 20% U?”

    James, I think this 20% business is a non-issue. 164 centrifuges gets you ‘closer’ than 64. 8000 centrifuges gets you ‘closer’ than 3000. 10% enrichment is ‘closer’ than 3.5%. Is there any particular reason to go bananas about 20%? I don’t think so. There is a research reactor that needs 20% fuel. There’s a power station that needs 3.5% fuel.

    As far as Iran’s intent goes, frankly in a world chock full of unknown unknowns, common sense has to be one’s guide. It makes no logical sense for Iran to develop weapons. http://www.nzherald.co.nz/world/news/article.cfm?c_id=2&objectid=10765416

  338. James Canning says:


    Wouldn’t most diplomats agree there is a problem, and the question is how best to resolve it? And the existing problem is there, even if perhaps it should not be.

  339. James Canning says:


    Wasn’t the Iranian-American already looking to score bit with a drugs deal using seized heroin? And this existing scheme was then enlarged by the US itself, to take in a “plot” to kill the Saudi ambassador etc? DEA and FBI deal rather than CIA.

  340. pirouz_2 says:

    Ok I think I found what I was looking for: item 31 on page 6 of the report by the IAEA.
    Does any one know what Iran’s response to that is?

  341. Fiorangela says:

    I’ve been reading a book by Ron Suskind, “The Way of the World.” Suskind sketches an ex-Marine, former Blackwater employee, now self-employed intelligence operative who has almost exclusive access to king of Jordan, and the very scary belief that running false-flag and international sting operations is “patriotic” and promotes American security interests.

    Suskind spelled out the details of an international uranium sting that this operative had proposed to the CIA. It involved all the criminal acts and chicanery that a semi-talented writer of fiction or a computer gamer might dream up. And Iran was the focus of the sting; it was believed by Mr. Derring-Do that as the mini-stings proceeded and low-level bad guys were played out, they would lead to the doorstep of Iran’s government in Tehran.

    So if this kind of scam was in the ‘can,’ available to the US State Department and intelligence agencies in Washington (and Israel, one assumes), how is it that the best that the US was able to put into motion was a farce involving a used car salesman, a Mexican drug gang, and a Saudi ambassador? How is it that the script that so obviously had no credibility whatsoever was the best the US State Department and Justice Department thought they could get away with? Why didn’t they go for the gusto, roll out the uranium sting that Col. Derring-Do proposed?

  342. pirouz_2 says:

    A question to everyone:
    Has anyone here heard of any complaints by IAEA that Iran has not allowed the inspection of some or any of its nuclear facilities? In particular has any one heard of any complaints that Iran has not allowed agency to inspect Arak facility?

  343. James writes:

    “PressTV reports newest CBS poll showing most Americans think diplomacy is way forward with Iran.”

    What bothers me about any such poll is that the very asking of the question suggests to the person being polled that there is some problem that needs to be solved, and so the only remaining question is how best to solve that problem. To illustrate the point, what if the poll question were this:

    “In your opinion, what is the United States’ best way forward with Canada?”

  344. BiBiJon says:


    “I am not sure what Axis Powers hoped to gain: Iranian surrender? Iranian agreement to nuclear suspension?”

    You know, I’m so unable to detect rhyme or reason, that I’m beginning to think one the following:

    a) Deliberately destroy the credibility of UN and all associated agencies. Why? Because, a New world order that is essentially the rule of the jungle tends to favor the nation endowed with the biggest/baddest military.

    b) Either the elite do not listen to the career civil servants, or there are no capable civil servants left to tell the elite “PULLING THE IAEA INTO THE “ATTACK IRAN” DEBATE WILL BACKFIRE.”

  345. Fiorangela says:

    Patrick Foy,

    Is there room in your delegation for former senator Sam Nunn, who, with George Schultz, William Perry and Henry Kissinger started the Nuclear Threat Initiative (NTI) about ten years ago.

    NTI’s quest for control over global nuclear activity arose in the context of its slam-dunk conviction that non-state actors will come into possession of enough nuclear material to destroy an American city.

    Thus, Nunn poses to his staff and contractors twin questions that serve as Nunn’s, and NTI’s dynamo: On the day AFTER that inevitable event occurs, what will we tell ourselves we should have done to prevent it, and why aren’t we doing it now?

    I think Hillary Leverett and Ron Paul have answered that question (and so has former ambassador to Pakistan Wendy Chamberlain, by the way): The US should be working toward rapprochement with Iran (Leverett). The US should be creating bonds of friendship with Iran (Paul). The US should be engaging in non-transactional extensions of soft-power, people-to-people diplomacy with Iran (Chamberlain).

    Nunn’s NTI shop employs at least forty (40) staffers whose job it is to think up, and even rehearse or game “existentially threatening” scenarios involving nuclear weapons, with the goal of propagating sufficient fear among the American people that they will approve of harsh measures that are otherwise antithetical to American values.

    I’m not sure how exercises involving black-hatted fake terrorists planting fake bombs, discovered & disarmed by guys on the white hat team, conducted in an NFL stadium in Florida in July heat, answer Nunn’s two questions.

    But Drs. Leverett, Paul, Ms. Chamberlain, and of course, Chas Freeman have answered those questions effectively.

    So perhaps if Sam Nunn were to join some rational people, and talk with Iran, visit Iran, learn about Iran, maybe he wouldn’t have to spend so much time and energy creating fear.

  346. fyi says:

    BiBiJon says: November 12, 2011 at 1:20 pm

    Clearly, this was part of a propaganda campaign that began with the allegations of the assasination attempt on Saudi Arabia’s ambassador to Washington by (elements of) the Iranian Government followed by publication of allegations on Iranian nuclearization by IAEA.

    The campaign has clearly fizzled.

    However, in both occasions, the highest state authority in Iran, the Supreme Jurisprudent, had to go on record to deny these allegations and also explicitly state that Iran – while not seeking a war or willing to attack any other country – will defend herself with all her might.

    I am not sure what Axis Powers hoped to gain: Iranian surrender? Iranian agreement to nuclear suspension?

    Mr. Khamenei basically siad: “We won’t start a war, but we are ready. Your call.”

    And Axis Powers declined to make the “call”.

    Which basically gets us to where we were before all of this: persistent and dangerous confrontation from Hind-Kush to the Mediterranean Sea.

    The confrontation has profound consequences for Persian Gulf Security, for Ira, for Afghanistan, for Pakistan, for Syria, for Lebanon, and for the War in and For Plaestine.

    My prediction is that the US-Iran Confrontation will continue for the next few decades.

    Once the permanence of this confrontation and the fact of the strategic autonomy of Iran is understood within the international system, several results will follow.

    One will be that the confrontation with European states (and not EU per se) will start to unravel over the next decade.

    My prediction is that US, UK, France will remain hostile to Iran indefinitely.

    Furthermore, the UNSC sanctions will remain in place but they also will start to unravel as fewer and fewer states will cary indefinitely a costly policy with no prospect of success.

    Note that war with Iran will not alter any of these.

  347. James Canning says:


    Do you think Iran actually is thinking of enriching U to weapons-grade? What is your opinion of Iranian offer to cease production of 20% U?

  348. James Canning says:

    PressTV reports newest CBS poll showing most Americans think diplomacy is way forward with Iran.

  349. BiBiJon says:

    Heck of a job, Aamano!

    The Russian Foreign Ministry deems the report as politically motivated. Russian Foreign Ministry spokesman Alexander Lukashevich commented on the report in a Voice of Russia interview.

    “What served as the basis for the IAEA to conclude that the Iranian leadership is pursuing the military agenda as part of its nuclear program is unclear. The IAEA leaders gave no answer to the question how they verified the information. Instead of providing concrete answers, the Agency wants us to take its word for it.”

    from http://english.ruvr.ru/2011/11/12/60284900.html

  350. James Canning says:


    Are you aware that Alexander Haig, Jr., was willing to allow Argentian to keep the Falklands? Why? Because Argentina was cooperating with Israel in aiding the Reagan administration to pursue its illegal wars in Central America.

    Haig, we should bear in mind, concealed from the US defence secretary the fact Israel was going to invade Lebanon in 1982. Haig in effect encouraged the Israeli invasion, which of course directly led to the creation of Hezbollah.

  351. James Canning says:


    Obama blundered when he allowed Dennis Ross to elbow George Mitchell aside. What utter foolishness for Obama to allow an open advocate of Israel to pretend to serve as an effective intermediary! Can we thank Hillary Clinton for this situation?

    The government of Iran insists it does not want nuclear weapons. That Obama was so foolish as to put Dennis Ross in charge of Israel/Palestine issue does not change that fact. Or, or you arguing that the position of the Iranian gov’t does not matter, because the people of the country may favor obtaining nukes?

  352. James Canning says:


    Argentina never owned the Falkland Islands. But Corsica, for example, belonged to Genoa for centuries. Should Corsica be part of Italy instead of France?

    Margaret Thatcher was quite right to eject the Argentines from the Falklands. She was quite right to insist that G H W Bush back Britain in expelling the Iraqis from Kuwait. The gross blunder too place after the Gulf War, when – – at urging of Israel – – the US so foolishly kept permanent military bases in Saudi Arabia.

  353. James Canning says:

    Patrick Foy,

    Excellent proposal! And by all means, do not let Hillary Clinton anywhere near the place where discussions (to seek solution to impasse between Iran and the west) are taking place.

  354. James Canning says:


    Are you an Evangelical Christian? Unknwon Unknowns thinks so.

  355. Jon says:

    The german nation doing everything to please the racketing mafia of you-know-who.

    Merkel calls for more sanctions on Iran

  356. Rehmat says:

    Jewish groups censor new Greek government

    Finally Athens have a new unity government headed by Dr. Lucas Papademos 64, former VP at the European Central Bank. The bankers at the Wall Street and London City have a sigh of relief. Sarkozy and Markel are happy with the choice. However, American Jewish Committee (AJC) has some serious reservations about one of the political parties in the unity government…..


  357. Neo says:


    Thanks for the irrelevant lecture. I always think that if someone cannot answer a simple question in a simple language, then they are evading the question or even hiding something.

    In fact, if we ‘have the right to critique, question, or even mock anything we want’, why are you only ever critiquing Iran’s possession of (non-existent) weapons rather than those who are constantly engaged in war? The question remains unanswered.

    Instead of reverting to Greek and Islamic texts, why are you not looking at real facts today and talking about them? I mean the fact that Westerners and Israelis are barbaric warmongers in possession of earth-threatening weapons of unparalleled destruction.

    Why are you ignoring this very relevant and urgent threat to the world?

    There are far simpler concepts that override your pretentious philosophy. Fairness, justice and rationality are the basic requirements for making fair judgements, regardless of the mode of debate that you preferred to concentrate on in your response. You lack all of these, pure and simple. Your double standards do not add a sophisticated nuance to the debate. They are mere double standards betraying your hypocrisy. This is unfortunately a rather common Western character.

    Now here’s a lecture in basic human reason backed up by historical facts: Iran has not invaded any country or launched any major wars in over 200 years. The West and Israel have done nothing but warmongering over the same period. Israel of course has not existed that long, but it has been even more ferocious and is the most militarised country on earth. When Iran has been engaged in war, as in with Iraq over 1980-88, Iran avoided any bombing of civilian areas. This information was given to me by Iraqis, not Iranians, fyi. At the same time, the West was busy supplying Saddam with banned chemical weapons.

    What we have seen of Iran’s behaviour in international relations points to a highly civilized character, especially as compared to the West and Israel. Iran’s possession of nuclear weapons, should to a rational person, be a much safer choice especially as a deterrent to those countries that are endlessly engaged in war and looking for more. Iran’s possession of nuclear weapons is likely to be a stabilising factor that any rational person can see.

    Any person who spends much time pontificating about the dangers of Iran having such weapons in the context of today’s situation is either lacking in basic logic or is irrationally anti-Iranian, aka, racist. Or a bigot, if you prefer.



  358. tin says:

    Israel have already began attacking Iran?

    UPDATED: Blast in military barracks west of Tehran


    Like a year back, there was another blast in a military compound, namely at the same place where Iran supposedly kept it Shabab missiles. Coincidence?

  359. tin says:

    Seymour hersh interviewed by RT awhile months back, still good.

    ‘Iran got no nukes and US knows that’


  360. Unknown Unknowns says:

    1. With regard to the IAEA and the Ancient Laptop, China and Russia have stated that they’re not buying the hype, so its a non-issue.

    2. With regards to Wilbur, although I think he is probably genuine or sincere (rather than a paid troll), methinks he is a born-again Evangelist, and that he will probably need several years to overcome his infaction by that nasty strain of word-virus before he can maintain an intelligent conversation here with the adults.

    3. Note to Wilbur from Dr. UU, as prescription attacking the virus at its radicle: no es sufficiente que usted es born ‘again’. Si usted quiere nadar con los pescados grandes (Hafez, Rumi, Sa’di…) es necessario que usted ser born again y again y again y again tambien.

  361. BiBiJon says:

    Clint says:
    November 11, 2011 at 7:12 pm

    deja vu on Iran:

    Thanks for that link. And further to Eric and Reza’s comments, I recommend

    link from IranAffairs:

    “It is worth noting how vague and poorly sourced this is. Some staff stayed in place to write up the results of a terminated program. Then, “some member states” provided information that “some activities” that “would be highly relevant to a nuclear weapons programme” were resumed, but no details of these activities are given (or whether or not they might have non-nuclear applications”. So the charge is that some unidentified intelligence agencies have said that some sort of unspecified work with (potential?) relevance to nuclear weapons research continued after 2003, based on unspecified and unverifiable evidence…

    So to summarise, apart from the absurd citation of openly published scientific research with clear non-nuclear weapons-related applications, it is all based on unverifiable intelligence from IAEA member states, in almost all cases from what appear to be the same two member states, one of which is likely Israel.”


  362. http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970204224604577027842025797760.html?mod=googlenews_wsj
    The Wall Street Journal article you mentioned is an excellent illustration (not that hundreds of other illustrations can’t easily be found) of the time-honored journalistic practice of transforming unsubstantiated allegations about Iran into undisputed facts.
    As we’ve discussed, the most recent candidate for this “transformation” is the “Saudi ambassador plot” story. But that story is far from being sufficiently “seasoned” (or so I’d naively assumed) to be silently upgraded from “unsubstantiated allegation” to “undisputed fact.” For goodness’ sake, it’s only been a few weeks.
    I’d concluded for a brief but happy moment that Matt Kaminski, the author of the Wall Street Journal article you cited, agreed that the “Saudi ambassador plot” story had not yet “put in its time,” since he’d dutifully included the word “accused” in the final sentence of the following passage:
    “This is a regime that took 52 American diplomats hostage and dared the Carter Administration to do something about it. It used its surrogates in Beirut to kill 258 American diplomats and Marines in 1983. The FBI believes it was behind the 1996 Khobar Towers bombing in Saudi Arabia that killed 19 U.S. airmen. It supplied IEDs to anti-American militias in Iraq, killing hundreds of U.S. soldiers. And only last month, the Obama Administration accused Iran of seeking to blow up the Saudi ambassador in a Washington, D.C., restaurant.”
    My hopes were soon dashed, though. In the very next sentence, Kaminski, with exquisite subtlety (in his writing, at least, if not in his mind, in which the “Saudi ambassador plot” was probably classified as “undisputed fact” the moment he first read it), assigned the “Saudi ambassador plot” its very own room in the House of Undisputed Fact:
    “These acts were perpetrated by Tehran without a nuclear umbrella. What would Iran’s behavior look like if it had one?”

    Never again, I suspect, will we read a Wall Street Journal story in which the word “alleged” or “accused” appears anywhere within shouting distance of the “Saudi ambassador plot.”

  363. WTF says:
    November 11, 2011 at 1:49 pm


    I agree with everything you wrote. I will be disappointed if Wilbur doesn’t respond to the several criticisms of what he’s written. As you mentioned, his views are prevalent in the US. It would be better for everyone to have Wilbur present them more carefully than they’re usually presented, rather than simply slink away. That was not my goal, and I doubt it was yours. I sincerely wanted to hear his answers to our pointed questions.

  364. Patrick Foy says:

    I have made the modest proposal that Ambassador Chas Freeman, Professor Flynt Leverett and Hillary Leverett, head a delegation to meet in Geneva with Iranian FM Ali Akbar Salehi in which all outstanding issues between Iran and America are on the table with no preconditions. Hillary R. Clinton will stay at home and attend to other matters. Barack Peace Prize Obama will maintain his campaign schedule, and leave everything up to the aforesaid U.S. plenipotentiaries in Geneva. Let’s give peace a chance.


  365. Unknown Unknowns says:


    I’m sorry your head looks like a potato. I really am.

  366. kooshy says:

    “Israel’s Advocate” to Leave White House for Pro-Israel Think Tank

    By Jim Lobe


    “Dennis Ross is returning to the outpost of the Israel Lobby whence he came, leaving a diplomatic shambles behind him,” according to Amb. Chas Freeman (ret.), former head of the Middle East Policy Council here. “

    “None of the issues in his charge prospered during his tenure, which saw the collapse of any pretence of a peace process between Israel and the Arabs, a deepening of the Iranian conviction that a nuclear deterrent is necessary to deter Israeli or American attack, and the collapse of American prestige and influence among the Arabs and in the Islamic world more generally,” he wrote in an email exchange with IPS.”

  367. Unknown Unknowns says:

    A wit, that is (not ‘sit’).

  368. Unknown Unknowns says:

    From a sit at Uskowi:

    A few years ago, America had Johnny Cash, Steve Jobs, and Bob Hope. Now it has no Cash, no Jobs, and no Hope.

  369. James Canning says:


    With Dennis Ross “leaving the bench”, does one dare hope Obama can find someone who is not Jewish to replace him? No offence to Jews intended, but perhaps it is time to put a Muslim in charge of dealing with Israel.

  370. James Canning says:


    Perhaps The NYT should explain to its readers why foolish American politicians f*cked up the nuclear fuel exchange. Or why the US so idiotically blocked Iran’s application to IAEA to refuel the TRR.

  371. Rehmat says:

    OWS: ‘Clash of financial disparity’

    The anti-government protests currently going on in United States, Greece, Spain, Italy and Israel – have different agenda than the so-called ‘Arab Spring’ mass protests we witnessed in Tunisia, Egypt, Bahrain, Yemen and Syria. While the ‘Arab Spring’ is against the western-supported corrupt ruling classes – the Western protesters are carrying an open war against the 1% rich-vultures. However, in both cases, the rich 1% minority is using every mean (government, politicians, police, bankers and media-outlets) at its disposal to destroy the 99% majority’s demands for equality and justice. So far, more than 3,000 protesters including journalists and war veterans have been arrested in United States……


  372. Clint says:

    deja vu on Iran:


    The New York Times is trotting out some of its favorite words – like “meticulous” – to praise the new report by United Nations weapons inspectors citing Iran’s supposed work on a nuclear bomb, and the Washington Post says the findings “ought to end serious debate” about Tehran’s nefarious intentions.

    So, rather than undertake a careful examination of the report’s claims, America’s preeminent newspapers are once more putting on display their deep-seated biases regarding the Middle East. Any claim against a Muslim adversary must be true.

    In the words of New York Yankees great Yogi Berra, “it’s déjà vu all over again.”

    It seems every time an allegation is made against a “designated enemy” in the Middle East, the Post and Times editors cast aside professional skepticism, a pattern that has included Iraq’s WMD (oops!); a U.N.-sponsored report on Syria’s guilt in the Hariri assassination (“meticulous,” the Times said, though the report later fell apart); and the flat-fact claim of Libya’s role in the Lockerbie bombing (highly dubious in terms of evidence, but useful in justifying Muammar Gaddafi’s ouster and murder). [For more on these cases, click here.]

    The Times editorial on Thursday was headlined, “The Truth About Iran” with the subhead: “A new report from weapons inspectors leaves little doubt about Tehran’s ambitions.” The editorial fully embraced the methodology of the International Atomic Energy Agency’s report, declaring:

    “The report is chillingly comprehensive. … What gives the report particular credibility is its meticulous sourcing. The agency’s director, Yukiya Amano, built a case on more than a thousand pages of documents, the assistance of more than 10 agency member states and interviews with ‘a number of individuals who were involved in relevant activities in Iran.’”

  373. James Canning says:

    Glenn Greenwald has some worthwhile comments today on some of the rabid neocons in Washington who foster hatred and fear of the Palestinians (“Why the Washington Post wont fire Jennifer Rubin”):


    Rachel Abrams, wife of Elliott Abrams, comes in for special attention for her viciousness.

  374. James Canning says:

    Interesting comments by Bradley Burston, “Iran Wins”:


    Burston believes Israel is doing itself in by failing to get out of the West Bank.

  375. James Canning says:


    The Greens greatly interfered with the proposed exchange by encouraging foolish noises from various American politicians. They should have been strongly supportive from day one. Even if that seemed to strengthen Ahmadinejad.

  376. Liz2 says:

    James, thanks for the quotation. I still wonder (not necesseray a question to you) how the greens could have influence on the decision. Or maybe they just voiced their opposition, – not really had any impact on what the iranian gov. finally decided on.

  377. James Canning says:


    Read also the section “What went wrong?” at


    Quote: “The objections in Iran came not from Iran’s firebrand President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad (he praised the deal as a ‘victory’ for Iran) but from his conservative rivals joined by the titular leaders of the Green Movement in Iran.”

  378. James Canning says:


    I am surprised because my understanding is that opposition from the Greens killed the deal. From the other direction. Greens did not want Ahmadinejad to gain credibility when they were seeking support for attempting to undermine him completely.

  379. James Canning says:


    did you read Limbert’s piece? Ahmadinejad said: “‘We welcome fule exchange, nuclear co-operation . ..’ But the reactor deal was soon criticized by Iran’s new Green movement [who] did not want the president to get credit for any deal favorable to Iran.”

  380. Liz2 says:

    James: Yes thats correct.

  381. James Canning says:


    Do I take it your understanding is that the Greens did not oppose the nuclear fuel exchange?

  382. Liz2 says:

    Putin welcomes Iran, Pakistan to join SCO

    neocons urge assasinations of Iranian military leaders.

    Iran Guard says will retaliate if leaders killed

  383. Liz2 says:

    James, sorry but now you just keep posting links without any links to the green whatsoever. Please answer my questions: Where in the report was the greens even named?

  384. James Canning says:


    The Greens in fact communicate with powerful American interests, and they encouraged the American interests to spoil the nuclear exchange by making the wrong sort of noises. John Limbert explains how this happens.

  385. James Canning says:


    Try John Limbert, “The Obama administration” (re: dealing with Iran):


    The 2009 nuclear fuel exchange “appears to have fallen through for a variety of reasons, both domestic and foreign. The biggest problem may have been Iran’s internal political fighting.”

  386. Liz2 says:

    I meant “read” not spoofed.

  387. Liz2 says:

    James, I just spoofed through the report, there was no mentions of greens could you copy+paste the quotation?

    I still dont understand what you mean, greens have no political power thus they cannot “block” anything.

  388. James Canning says:


    An interesting aspect of the matter is that vicious warmongering neocons in the US encouraged the Greens to block the proposed nuclear fuel exchange!

  389. James Canning says:


    Try to read Ivanka Barzashka and Ivan Oelrich, comments in Federation of the American Scientists, “The Twenty Percent Solution – – Breaking the Iranian Stalemate”.

    The Greens feared that the nuclear fuel exchange would lend credibility to the Iranian gov’t. Thus, they helped to block it. Foolish almost beyond belief.

  390. James Canning says:

    I recommend Philip Stephens’ comments about Rupert Murdoch today in the Financial Times: “Murdoch: the dynasty never to be”.

  391. James Canning says:


    Bravo! Linked comments by Robert Kelley on new IAEA report: “it’s really quite stunning how little new information is in there.”

    Idiot Republican warmongers claim the new report provides grounds for attacking Iran! And thank you, Wall Street Journal, for helping those idiot Republican warmongers subvert the national security of the grossly ignorant American people.

  392. Liz2 says:

    James canning = But…the green have no political power? What are you talking about? Could you give me 1 source?

  393. James Canning says:


    When the gov’t of Iran tentatively agreed to the nuclear fuel exchange, the Greens opposed it.

  394. Liz2 says:

    James canning = sorry I am not following, the greens have no power in Iran, even amongst the green/opposition they support the ruling gov. stance on the nuclear issue.

  395. WTF says:

    Clint says:
    November 11, 2011 at 12:41 pm

    Great article.

    “A further lesson in all this is that it is possible to stretch history however one wants to try to prove whatever one wants, no matter how much an objective rendering of events points in the opposite direction.”

  396. James Canning says:


    Regarding the “Greens”, I would also note this comment by Michael Theodoulou (in The National, March 15, 2010): “Many leading lights in the “green” movement are, for instance, sympathetic to Hizbollah: a stance that dismayed hawks in Washington pressing for regime change in Iran when they learnt of it.”


    I wonder if Wilbur is aware of the above?

  397. Clint says:


    Agreed. I just thought it was not worth all these people’s energies. Bigger fish…

  398. WTF says:

    Clint says:
    November 11, 2011 at 1:09 pm


    I have considered that some of the “contributors” here are merely trolls. Regarding Wilbur, whether he is sincere or not, his opinions are very prevalent amongst Americans. I think it benefits this forum to represent a diverse set of views and to openly debate some of these commonly-held ideas, even (perhaps especially) if they are not accurate/reasonable. It is better to have the debate, not to change the individuals mind, but rather to hold their views up to the light and show the holes to any objective observer, who may just genuinely lack the factual information. You can’t always preach to the choir.

  399. James Canning says:

    SteveWaltspiece at foreignpolicy.com on Winep should not be missed.

  400. James Canning says:


    The “Greens” failed to support the proposed nuclear exchange.

  401. Liz2 says:


    what do you mean by “The “Greens” in Iran helped to block the proposed nuclear fuel exchange. Was that in your view a wise thing to have done?”

  402. James Canning says:


    Clearly the revolt in Libya comprised a varied number of groups, tribes, interests, etc. etc. Efforts to achieve a cease-fire were obstructed by the “rats” as you call them. There were, and are, varied opinions within the transitional gov’t and within and among the varioius “fighters”.

    Libyan oil production may return to 700,000 barrels per day by end of year, BTW. A good thing for sure.

  403. James Canning says:


    China and Russia do not agree with your contention that the “final diplomatic shots have been taken”. Nor does William Hague.

  404. James Canning says:


    The “Greens” in Iran helped to block the proposed nuclear fuel exchange. Was that in your view a wise thing to have done?

  405. Clint says:


    Russia, though, on Wednesday dismissed the document as “a compilation of well-known facts that have intentionally been given a politicized intonation.”

    IAEA officials rely in the document on “assumptions and suspicions, and juggle information with the purpose of creating the impression that the Iranian nuclear program has a military component,” the Russian Foreign Ministry said in released comments. Tehran has long insisted is atomic ambitions are strictly peaceful.

    Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and a lower-ranking diplomat conferred in Moscow on Wednesday with Iranian Supreme National Security Council Undersecretary Ali Bagheri, the ministry stated (Ellen Barry, New York Times, Nov. 9).

    Separately, Beijing said economic penalties could not “fundamentally solve” the atomic dispute, Agence France-Presse reported.

  406. James Canning says:

    Those interested in how better access to fair and honest courts, can improve economic performance in a country or region, should read “The facts about the DIFC courts” (letter by Sir Anthony Evans to the Financial Times, printed today). (Financial Centre courts in Dubai, open to the world.)

  407. Clint says:

    I am somewhat surprised at you folks: “Wilbur” is a psychops agent planted to distract real conversation here and waste your keystrokes. Classic psychops. Think about why he would come here to pose disingenuous questions. Ignore him/her/it.

  408. James Canning says:


    Surely if Wilbur wants to use terms like “mad mullahs”, he should also refer to idiot American politicians.

  409. James Canning says:


    Bravo. Perhaps Wilbur will provide a single sentence explaining hwat Iran should have done regarding the elections, that was not done, that to him would better demonstrate that the outcome was correct.

  410. James Canning says:

    I recommend “A letter to Netanyahu: time is no longer on Israel’s side”, by Kishore Mahbani in today’s Financial Times. Quote: “The world is [ever] more exasperated with the continuous increase in illegal Israeli settlements on the West Bank.”
    And: “The world knows that while Americans and Europeans love to preach the virtue of speaking ‘truth to power’, they have displayed total cowardice on the Israel-Palestine issue.” All too true.

  411. Clint says:

    From b at armscontrolwonk.com

    In case it was not noticed here, Robert Kelley, former IAEA inspector and now with SIPRI casts some heavy doubts over the “alleged studies” the new IAEA report annex is based on. He himself has worked on the “alleged studies” and is thereby one of the few who know them and can talk about them.

    “It’s very thin, I thought there would be a lot more there,” says Robert Kelley, an American nuclear engineer and former IAEA inspector who was among the first to review the original data in 2005. “It’s certainly old news; it’s really quite stunning how little new information is in there.”

    The 2005 laptop documents focus on three areas: a so-called “green salt project” to provide a clandestine source of uranium; high-explosives testing; and reengineering a Shahab-3 missile to fit a nuclear warhead.

    News reports at the time indicated deep skepticism, when some of the laptop contents were first shown to diplomats accredited to the IAEA. In many quarters, doubt still persists. Recognizing such skepticism, one portion of the IAEA report was devoted to addressing the credibility of the information. But Mr. Kelly, the former IAEA inspector who also served as a department director at the agency, remains unconvinced.

    “The first is the issue of forgeries. There is nothing to tell that those documents are real,” says Kelley, whose experience includes inspections from as far afield as Iraq and Libya, to South Africa in 1993.

    “My sense when I went through the documents years ago was that there was possibly a lot of stuff in there that was genuine, [though] it was kind of junk,” says Kelly. “And there were a few rather high-quality things” like the green salt document: “That was two or three pages that wasn’t related to anything else in the package, it was on a different topic, and you just wondered, was this salted in there for someone to find?”

    It would not be the first time that data was planted. He recalls 1993 and 1994, when the IAEA received “very complex forgeries” on Iraq that slowed down nuclear investigations there by a couple of years.

    “Those documents had markings on them, and were designed to resemble Iraqi documents, but when we dug into them they were clearly forgeries,” adds Kelley. “They were designed by a couple of member states in that region, and provided to the Agency maliciously to slow things down.”

    In 2002, notes Kelley, the IAEA also dealt with “pretty bad” forgeries done by the Italians, on Iraq’s supposed nuclear links to Niger, that the CIA picked up and used for the Bush administration’s case for war in Iraq.

    For Kelley, formerly with the IAEA, the current Iran report is a “real mish-mash” that includes some “amateurish analysis.”

    Among several technical points, Kelley notes the report’s discussion of Iran’s “exploding bridge-wire detonators,” or EBWs. The IAEA report said it recognizes that “there exist non-nuclear applications, albeit few,” and point to a likely weapons connection for Iran.

    “The Agency is wrong. There are lots of applications for EBWs,” says Kelley. “To be wrong on this point, and then to try to misdirect opinion shows a bias towards their desired outcome…. That is unprofessional.”

  412. Wilbur,

    I can’t honestly say I feel guilty for belaboring the point I made in my preceding post, and that WTF has also made. It’s an important point. You’re engaging in exactly the sort of “reasoning” I see too often in debates about Iran and find so objectionable.

    You announce you have “doubts” about the 2009 election. That’s fine – you’re entitled to your opinion. You then add that you don’t want to “beat a dead horse,” meaning you don’t want actually to show that your doubts are well-grounded. That’s also fine – you’re entitled to pick your battles, including no battles at all.

    It ceases to be “fine,” however, when you subtly but indisputably present your stolen-election doubts as if they were undisputed facts. That is exactly what you do when you make a statement like this one, which I quoted earlier but deserves to be quoted again:

    “My only point was to highlight Iran’s continual obstruction (my belief and obviously something you disagree with) on many fronts such as the elections is consistent with their rhetoric concurring their nuclear program.”

    This appears to be the essence of that sentence:

    “Iran’s rhetoric concerning its nuclear program may fairly be called ‘obstructionist’ because it resembles Iran’s rhetoric concerning the 2009 election, which rhetoric was obstructionist.”

    That argument has weight if and only if it’s first established that Iran’s rhetoric concerning the 2009 election was obstructionist (whatever that means) – a question that you explicitly dodge in other portions of what you write.

    You certainly may argue separately, if you like, that Iran’s crackdown after the 2009 election was excessive. That is an important issue, and I’ve often made the point that finding no unfairness in the 2009 election does not establish that the Iranian authorities behaved appropriately after the election. But that argument, if you were to make it, has nothing to do with the 2009 election itself. (If you could argue persuasively that a crackdown occurred BEFORE the election, that indeed would be relevant, but I’ve heard only sporadic and flimsy arguments to that effect, presented without much conviction and never presented at all by Mousavi himself.) But unless and until you at least try to establish that the 2009 election was “stolen” or “fraudulent” or “rigged” – or any of the other labels routinely applied by various shoot-from-the-hip critics – you have no right to use that “fact” as a premise for your arguments on any other subject.

  413. Ted says:

    wilbur .

    Does your girlfriend happen to be an exile or borned by iranian exiles?
    Your argumentation is very similar to exiles who have a contempt for Islam and say that they represent the true ‘iranian’ (or Iraqi, Jordanian as other exiles from the region etc).

  414. WTF says:

    Wilbur says:
    November 11, 2011 at 8:00 am

    As with Eric below me, I am still grasping for the basis of your position. I understand that you want to hold off on providing the supporting facts for either of your claims of obstructionism against the IRI until you have sifted through the “mounds of documentation”, but wouldn’t it have been prudent to do your homework and be fully informed on the subjects prior to formulating two very negative opinions that you then conflate into an allegation the IRI being consistently obstructionist (implying with nefarious intentions).

    Also, using catch phrases like “Mad Mullahs” doesn’t help your objective observer status (at least in my book). And having friends from Iran could cloud your judgment of the Iranian Government just as easily as it could enlighten it. I am first-generation born in America; I have family that has emigrated all over the world as well as much family still in Iran. I have family members that are staunch supporters of the current establishment as well as family that actively oppose it. I use my contact with all of these people to build a solid foundation of information, both empirical and anecdotal, that I use to formulate my own objective views. Talking to a few people with strong opinions (especially if they are like minded) will likely give you a jaded view. I see this often in associates who return from the armed services, and think that they now have a solid understanding of the world, when in actuality they have merely been force fed one sides propaganda.

    I hope you realize that when you say:

    ”Yes no conclusive evidence has been found but I would argue no conclusive information has been revealed to prove they are not pursuing a nuke.”

    You are implying that Iran should be required to disprove a negative. Again not winning you any brownie points for objectivity.

  415. fyi says:

    Tim says: November 11, 2011 at 4:36 am

    US needs her armament industry going, and Arabs are obliging.

  416. Fiorangela says:

    re Wilbur to Neo, at 5:47 am on Nov 11 —

    Wilbur wrote:

    “Your use of the word racist is indicative of how little you understand the ideology driving Western civilization. So pardon me if I am a bit pedantic in my reponse but I feel it is necessary to cover some critical points concerning the corner stones of Western civilization:
    -Greek thought or simply critical thought, the scientific method, and deductive reasoning constitute the primary building block”

    Which era of Western Civilization are you schooling Neo in, Wilbur?

    Francis Bacon took the first steps toward revolutionizing “western” thinking in the 1600s. In Novum Organum, the second part of the “Great Renewal” or new beginning, Bacon rejected deductive reasoning –the Aristotelian system of logic based on the syllogism, which relied on a premise whose validity was based on Authority. Bacon argued for a new way of thinking inductively,

    Induction is not based on received authority to undergird the truth value of the first premise. Induction begins with observations of nature — of the way things work. Then, the broad and varied observations from nature are ‘collected and sorted,’ to discern patterns and categories based on the properties observed. Similarities and causal relations are explored.

    Galileo’s thinking process was inductive: he observed the movement of the bodies in the heavens and sought a pattern and relationships — a theory — that would generalize to make sense of those observations. When Galileo’s theories ran afoul of the authority of the Church, he invited Church fathers to look through his telescope and observe what he had observed. The Church rejected Galileo’s invitation; the Church relied on the deductions of Ptolemy, themselves an improvement on Aristotle’s pronouncements but still out of sync with observed reality.

    Francis Bacon’s and Galileo’s revolutions in the way people think paved the way for Newton and ushered in the Age of Enlightenment,

    “when Newtonian science exerted its greatest impact . . . [eighteenth century philosophers] sought to find in human affairs natural laws similar to those science had discovered in the physical universe.”

  417. fyi says:

    Wilbur says: November 11, 2011 at 3:37 am

    This is silly: “…I would argue no conclusive information has been revealed to prove they are not pursuing a nuke.”

    You are asking Iran to prove a negative; that is not Iran’s problem.

    Trust is not the issue; NPT has certain rules and regulations and Iran is conforming to them.

    UNSC has created new obligations for Iran that are not part of NPT.

    UNSC is trying to take away sovereign rights from Iran.

    UNSC does not have that right.

    If you want to take away sovereign rights from a state then please at least have the decency to go to war and spend blood and treasure to do so.

    If you cannot afford to go to war, then may be you should not have escalated to teh strategic Never-Never Land.

    As is, the nuclear file is finished – for Iran as an issue and for US-EU as leverage.

    The final diplomatic shots have been fired and nothing is left.

  418. Rehmat says:

    Israel is the best in using dirty tricks in its PR – from politics, war, character assassination to religion. Israel has used pornography in marketing Holocaust; used falsfied reports to push Washington to attack Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya. Now, it’s falsifying IAEA report in order to push United States to another war against the Islamic Republic of Iran.

    On religious front – Israel have been using the Dead Sea Scrolls stolen from the Rockefeller Museum in East Jerusalem in 1967 by the Jewish occupation army.

    Currently, the Dead Sea Scrolls are on display at the Discovery Time Square exhibit space in New York. According to Israeli hasbara (propaganda) that the stone on which the Scrolls are written – was part of the Western Wall (Wailing Wall) of the second Temple in Jerusalem.

    However, some Israeli historians believe that the present-day Western Wall has nothing to do with Judaism. It’s a hoax created by Zionist Jews just as their biblical claim to Palestine.

    The exhibition displays over 500 objects; pottery, coins, seals, jewelry, carvings, textiles and 2000-year-old old olive pits – all found in the deserts surrounding Qumran in 1947.

    Interestingly, the Scrolls in addition to many other prophecies – predicts the coming of two Messiahs – one for the “priestly” works and the second for the “kingly” works. These predictions could relate to prophet Jesus (as) and the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh). Jesus, according to Matthew 22:21; preached peace and submissiveness and leave the rule of land to others. He (John 16:7-14) told his followers that he yet had many things to teach them but they could not bear them yet and that another messenger would be coming after him who would teach them the complete truth.


  419. Wilbur writes to someone else:

    “My only point was to highlight Iran’s continual obstruction (my belief and obviously something you disagree with) on many fronts such as the elections is consistent with their rhetoric concurring their nuclear program.”

    You argue that Iran’s government is “obstructionist” because it insists the 2009 election was fair, and, therefore, it must also be “obstructionist” when it claims not to be developing nuclear weapons?

    Is that your essential argument, Wilbur?

  420. Reza Esfandiari says:

    Wilbur says:

    “I am what folks would her on RFI would call a “Greeny” and do very much doubt the outcome of the elections.”

    Do you mean you support the Green revolution of the late Muamar Qaddafi? Btw, as to Muslim migration to the West, you should also note that many Westerners live in Islamic regions such as the Persian Gulf and in Malaysia/Indonesia. So it isn’t one way traffic.

  421. Wilbur says:


    I can certainly understand your questioning of my seemingly paradoxical stance regarding nuclear proliferation and Iran having a bomb. Upon reading my post again It is easy to see how any rationale person would have a “What The F…” or WTF moment once reading it–of course paying homage to your call name! :). Thus in an effort to clarify my stance I will state unequivocally I reject anyone having nuclear weapons and any proliferation of their use– not to mention the hypocrisy of nuclear armed states dictating on the subject. I hope you understand my poorly worded statement was made in an effort draw out my point respective the topic of support for something visa via trust vs. mistrust. It should not have been read in the context that I support either.

    Regarding the elections I really don’t want to beat a dead horse. Like nuclear weapons the current Iranian administration is here for the foreseeable future irrespective what I may wish. My only point was to highlight Iran’s continual obstruction (my belief and obviously something you disagree with) on many fronts such as the elections is consistent with their rhetoric concurring their nuclear program. Now as for dodging your question my intention was not to do so. I apologize if you came away with that feeling. The reason I did not answer is because I wanted to construct an informed response. That obviously takes time in order to sift the mounds of the documentation. I have spent a few hours already familiarizing myself with the topic reading a number of reports but still need to do more research. I hope to have that done over the weekend at which time I will respond. Take care and look forward to our upcoming exchange! Now I have to go to work and I will doing so having spent almost the entire night wailing away on RFI related topics! No rest for the wicked!


  422. Wilbur says:


    Your use of the word racist is indicative of how little you understand the ideology driving Western civilization. So pardon me if I am a bit pedantic in my reponse but I feel it is necessary to cover some critical points concerning the corner stones of Western civilization:

    – Greek thought or simply critical thought, the scientific method, and deductive reasoning constitute the primary building block
    – We do not believe in the primacy of things divinely revealed
    – Free speech, freedom of conscience(religion) and equality of all regardless of religion
    – The primacy of universal individual human rights vs. the rights of the state and most certainly any god
    – the right for man to make and change laws in a secular model regardless of what any religion dictates

    All of the above mean we believe we have the right to critique, question, or even mock anything we want. It also means we think primarily as individuals largely divorced from any kind of group think/conformity. This means we recognize the nuclear issue is unfair but don’t view critique of it as racist regardless of what platform you are arguing from. As for the claim of Israel and the US being the most violent barbaric regimes in the world that is a laugh.

    Why then are Muslims exponentially emigrating to and growing in the west? Why have non Muslims in the Islamic world been in a demographic free fall for decades? Hmm could it be because in the west Muslims are free to call others to their faith, build mosques to their hearts content (600 new ones in the US since 9/11), and are equal before the law— while non Muslims in the Islamic world deal with a categorical ban on their missionary work, have their religions/houses of worship outright banned or at least severely restricted (Indonesia all by itself destroyed 700 churches in the last decade), and deal with laws directly lifted from Islamic Scripture that not only mandate but in fact institutionalize their discrimination? Heck the most affluent free Muslims in the world happen to be in Israel, the US and Europe. Yes the Iraq war was evil and I whole heartedly apologize for that. I also apologize for the destructive foreign policies emanating out of the west currently. I apologize for prior actions like operation Ajax in Iran. But when is the Islamic world ever going to apologize for 2.5 million dead in Sudan, the 3 million liquidated by the Islamists in present day Bangladesh, Iran banning the Bahai religion and the gross inequality of rights non Muslims face in the Islamic world? When is the Islamic world going to stop blaming everyone else and realize that many of their problems at the work of their own hands? Those are the facts and the reason year after year the who’s who list of the world’s worst human and religious rights abusers are overwhelmingly dominated by Islamic states not Western ones. In closing if we are so violent and barbaric why do we in the West not the Islamic world cover over 90% of the Palestinian budget every year.


  423. hans says:

    James Canning says:
    November 10, 2011 at 6:55 pm
    And you may recall it was the Libyan revolutionaries who blocked efforts to achieve a negotiated resolution of the situation.

    Surely you meant rats and bigots not revolutionaries. I bet that no investigation will be forthcoming regarding the disappearance of Sadr in Libya. Too many people in Iran and Lebanon will make sure it never happens. Sadr was extremely popular with many revolutionaries, in fact his agenda for Palestine was universally popular across the Arab world.

  424. Tim says:

    U.S. may sell precision-guided bombs to UAE: source
    [LINK] http://uk.reuters.com/article/2011/11/11/us-usa-uae-bombs-idUKTRE7AA0VT20111111

    obama keep the arms race going in the mideast and the gulf-states keep being fooled.

  425. Wilbur says:


    Thank you for your courteous reply. As always reading the intent behind the words of a post are nigh impossible when all you have are the words. Thus it is important to note I was neither mad or upset over your words. I was actually amused and my response written to you was written with a smile. In short your witty response was funny respective to some of the responses I have gotten here over the past 2 years. It is something my good friends often do when chiding me regarding something I said or did!

    In reference to a debate I was merely asking you to poke holes in what I said. Nothing more nothing less. Your response by in large did not do that and to a degree I can understand because I didn’t offer much detail. My post was more directed to others whom I have exchanged with and would understand the context behind it. To offer a little background please see below:

    – I am what folks would her on RFI would call a “Greeny” and do very much doubt the outcome of the elections
    – I am a person who deplores any kind of dictatorship which I believe the regime is
    – I don’t universally hold my view to be right and a very much open to views different than mine
    – I believe in the primacy of universal human rights free from the dogma of rigid religious enforced conformity especially when it concerns oppression of minority faiths an example being the Bahais in Iran
    – I despise the mad Mullahs and fully realize if I am not careful it can cloud me from objectively
    – Unlike many in the west I have a unique perspective considering my girlfriend is from Tehran, two of my other close friends are Irainian, and because of that I have met many of their relatives over the years whom happen to still live in Iran
    – I am very much opposed to the current foreign policy of the US and deeply suspect their motives
    – support Israel’s right to exist which the regime of Iran has sated numerous times does not
    – I believe Iran has a right to nuclear energy but am deeply troubled over their actions that in my mind say they are not

    I hope that offers so much needed context behind my posts that you might not have readily recognized if you had not been posting here for some time. All the best to you and I look forward to your response.


  426. Wilbur says:


    You have just hit the proverbial nail on the head. Yes no conclusive evidence has been found but I would argue no conclusive information has been revealed to prove they are not pursuing a nuke. This is the same scenario for the elections and why I referenced it. Yes it’s a double standard to a degree but many in the world are disturbed about the possibility of the mad mullahs being nuclear armed. The rhetoric spewing out of their leaders via the IRIB and the mantra of the regime to spread their revolution (not so incidentally a key goal of Islam itself) does not endear one to believing the regime. Compunding the issue is the regimes continual obstruction and questionable actions to date.

    The key i believe for the West is the notion “of engaging in good faith” which the regime has not done to date but instead chosen to conceal much of what they are doing. Conversely the regime is right to questions the West’s intentions respective to those who’s aim is regime change. This again brings us full circle back to question of trust. Neither side trusts the others so the nuclear issue is a proxy battle of sorts and thus the never ending dance continues. Let’s hope rationale thought at some point wins out and they can start earning each others trust so we cam resolve this issue. Until then the nuclear issue is just a pawn in a much larger battle.


  427. masoud says:

    Speaking of armscontrolwonk, they usually are the first to pre-publish leaked IAEA reports. As of now, complete silence. I think Jeffery Lewis is having an anxiety trying to figure out how he can spin this whole affair so as to save his friend David Albirght embarrassment.

  428. Pirouz,

    I’m glad you mentioned that. I’d meant to, and forgot. I did take your advice and voted for him, though.

  429. masoud says:

    I think I’ve just come across the most jarring piece of evidence lending credence to Iran’s depiction of the events rippling through the Arab World as an ‘Islamic Awakening’:

    Over here we have a secular Lebanese leftist, who has never had a single positive thing to say about Islam, and plenty of derisive things to say about it trying to repackage Nasser as some kind of ‘Progressive Islamist’. I mean, As’ad has in the past actually complained about Muslims expressing concern about Masjid-Ul-Aqsa, declared that what the Arab world needs is a France-like banishment of everything religious from the public domain, and threatened to post the Danish Cartoons. What do you think has all of a sudden possessed him to try and portray his precious secularized military dictator as an Islamic Reformer?

  430. Pirouz says:


    Great news! Iranian-American Ross Mirkarimi is our new sheriff here in San Francisco.

  431. James,

    Like you, I preferred that Iran work out some deal to acquire 20% uranium for the TRR from outside sources. But I felt strongly, and still do, that Iran should start making its own 20% uranium if no deal could be worked out. Obviously that’s what happened and, just as obviously, Iran has starting doing exactly what I’d have done in the circumstances: produce its own 20% uranium.

    I don’t know whether you agree that Iran should be doing that. What I’m more interested to know, though, is whether you believe what’s commonly written: that Iran is pointlessly producing more 20% uranium than its “current needs” require. I agree with you that Iran gains nothing by pointlessly provoking the US, but the key word here is “pointlessly.” How do we profess to know what Iran’s “current needs” are when, as I recall, we didn’t even know two years ago exactly how much TRR fuel it still had left from its Argentina purchase in 1993. And how do we know what its “current needs” are if we don’t know (and I don’t think we do now) exactly what uses Iran plans to make of its TRR down the road. Finally, I see no reason why Iran should not build up a healthy reserve, well above its “current needs,” for various reasons other than a sinister plan to further refine it into bomb fuel.

    I’ll appreciate your thoughts on any of this.

  432. Anon says:

    <20% enriched U is LEU.

    Iran needs 19.75% LEU for TRR to make isoptopes for medicine.

    It is stockpiling more than current needs maybe because it may get bombed so supply may be interrupted in future.

  433. Unknown Unknowns says:

    James says “Does the US refuse to acknowledge the sovereignty of the Iranian people? I don’t think this is a correct statement.”

    For 32 years, the US has steadfastly refused to recognize or talk to the people Iranians have chosen to represent them. What do YOU call it if not a denial of our sovereignty and our right to exist?

    When Iran refuses to acknowledge the existence of Israel, that is exactly the message she is sending. Why would Uncle Weasel’s message be any different?

  434. Humanist says:

    On topic of this thread: Another powerful analysis of IAEA report, this time by Robert Parry:


  435. Reza Esfandiari says:

    The Wall Street Journal is back to building the case for war with Iran:

    If Iran Gets the Bomb


  436. Karl says:

    “I am afraid you are mistaken. Read Anne-Marie Slaughter’s piece in the Financial Times today. 20% U is regarded as putting Iran on the 10-yard line (in US football sports analoby). 5% U is the 30-yeard line. (That is, three times further away from the “goal” – – nuclear weapons.)”

    I have no interest in analogies.

    “Your apparent belief that Saudi fears need be of no concern is very mistaken.

    Iran gets what from enriching U to 20% A surge of national pride?

    It can enrich at any number it wants, its their full right. Who cares what the wahabbists say? Do you think the schims between Iran and Saudi came up as soon as Iran began enriching?

    “Do I understand you get a surge of pride from Iran’s defiance of “the west”?”
    Your rhetoric reminds me of the warmongering US, UK and israel.
    Iran is not “defiant”, of course it is defiant if you think that US, UK, Israel are right on Iran. Do you?

    “Do you comprehend how strongly Russia and China oppose any Iranian possession of nukes?

    What? Where did I state something else?

  437. James Canning says:


    Do I understand you get a surge of pride from Iran’s defiance of “the west”?

    Do you comprehend how strongly Russia and China oppose any Iranian possession of nukes?

  438. James Canning says:

    Robert Parry’s recent piece should not be missed (“An Iraqi WMD Replay on Iran?”):


  439. James Canning says:


    I am afraid you are mistaken. Read Anne-Marie Slaughter’s piece in the Financial Times today. 20% U is regarded as putting Iran on the 10-yard line (in US football sports analoby). 5% U is the 30-yeard line. (That is, three times further away from the “goal” – – nuclear weapons.)

    Your apparent belief that Saudi fears need be of no concern is very mistaken.

    Iran gets what from enriching U to 20% A surge of national pride?

  440. Karl says:


    “The Saudis might very well accept Iranian production of LEU for the Bushehr nuclear power plants. The enriching to 20% is seen as a direct threat. So, what benefit to Iran from arousing significant concerns in one of the richest countries on earth? Cannot make sense. The 20% U is a “feel-good” exercise that poses great danger to Iran.”

    Once again, it doesnt matter what percentage they enrich at. 20% is even LEU.

  441. James Canning says:

    Let’s wish Glenn Greenwald great success with his new book. Title? With Liberty and Justice for Some: How the Law is Used to Destroy Equality and Protect the Powerful.

  442. James Canning says:

    Those not aware of Bicom and its connection to Aipac should read:


    Aipac has reached a position of near-control of US Congress. Its affiliate, Bicom, hopes to do the same thing with the UK parliament.

  443. James Canning says:


    Perhaps the foolish actions of boobish students at Penn State offer little guidance. I would pay more attention to Jewish oligarchs who support Israel right or wrong.

  444. James Canning says:


    There was very little attention given to the efforts of some far-thinking European diplomats to avoid a western military intervention in Libya. And you may recall it was the Libyan revolutionaries who blocked efforts to achieve a negotiated resolution of the situation.

  445. James Canning says:


    The Saudis might very well accept Iranian production of LEU for the Bushehr nuclear power plants. The enriching to 20% is seen as a direct threat. So, what benefit to Iran from arousing significant concerns in one of the richest countries on earth? Cannot make sense. The 20% U is a “feel-good” exercise that poses great danger to Iran.

  446. Irshad says:

    Does anyone have a link to the speech given by Ayatollah Khamenie at the military academy earlier today? Preferably in English. Thank you.

    @interested – point taken BUT please let the human right activist, Scott Lucas know about this so he can start an international campaign against this school head on his website Enduring America. But i must warn you if that school head is not 1.Iranian and 2. A supporter of the Iranian govt. Then unfortunately he will NOT be interested!!!!!

  447. Interested says:

    Sorry for changing the subject, but a regime governing a country in which thousands of university students riot in support of a head coach (Joe Paterno) who helped cover up the rape of small children, is not going to be easily stopped from lying and carrying out aggression.

  448. Karl says:


    “I think Iran should be able to produce LEU for the Burshehr nuclear power plants. I question whether it is in Iran’s best interests to enrich significant quantities of 20% U, at least at this time. What purpose does it serve, apart from demonstrating a willingness to “stand up” to “arrogant powers”?”

    Look, It doesnt matter if Iran enrich 3,5% or 19,75%, US, UK etc doesnt accept none of it, they demand full stop of Iran’s nuclear enrichment. Bowing for US, UK, israeli demands just show Iran as a week player and Iran will loose tremendusly on such a stance, mainly because it says that Iran could be persuaded to US, UK, israeli interests and if Iran once show weakness well then they have already lost.

    “My point about Gaddafi is that he brought disaster to himself because he refused to listen to excellent advice from European diplomats who had the best interests of Libya in mind when they told him to quieten down. You should be able to see the connection.”

    Ok, I cant recall such diplomacy, I remember however how the western world refused diplomacy on Libya.

  449. James Canning says:

    Good report by Harriet Sherwood on Palestinian bid for UN membership:


  450. James Canning says:


    If, as in your view, Japan is only “semi-independent”, what explains the fact Japan was largest buyer of Iranian oil, for years? Surely you do not think Japan bought Iranian oil to please the US?

  451. James Canning says:

    Daily Telegraph leader today (“Iran’s nuclear menace”): “Western leaders. . . must focus attention on this tinderbox region and seek a new international consensus to intensify the sanctions on Iran.”

  452. James Canning says:


    Consider Germany in 2011: greatest power in Europe, by far. And cutting its army and other defence spending by a considerable degree. Rise to great power owed nothing to size of army, number of warships etc etc.

  453. James Canning says:


    I think Iran should be able to produce LEU for the Burshehr nuclear power plants. I question whether it is in Iran’s best interests to enrich significant quantities of 20% U, at least at this time. What purpose does it serve, apart from demonstrating a willingness to “stand up” to “arrogant powers”?

    My point about Gaddafi is that he brought disaster to himself because he refused to listen to excellent advice from European diplomats who had the best interests of Libya in mind when they told him to quieten down. You should be able to see the connection.

  454. James Canning says:


    As you know or should know, I view very favorably Iran’s rise to greater wealth and economic power. I think Iran would be a considerably richer country if the nuclear dispute could be resolved.

  455. James Canning says:


    South Korea cheers the rise of China to greater wealth. This works to SK’s advantage.

    I think issues of oil and gas etc in South China Sea explain much of the unease on part of some of China’s neighbors.

    Hasn’t it made good sense for Japan to grow richer in part due to fact American taxpayers fund its defence to large degree?

  456. James Canning says:


    I think India tries to work with China, when possible. For example, today’s FT reports (“China and India call for action”): “China and India have urged the developed world to act more responsibly in managing debt to restore global financial stability. . .” Rare joint statement.

  457. James Canning says:


    And what typical rubbish from The New York Times: departure of Dennis Ross will leave the White House “with a much-diminished bench on the Middle East”.

  458. kooshy says:

    Irshad says:

    November 10, 2011 at 3:15

    Thanks for the news

    Mr. Ross was a total failure for the United States’ Middle Eastern policies, especially for Mr. Obama’s administration; in his diplomatic tenure he has caused more harm to the interests of this country in the greater Middle East than anybody else. A true American patriot should welcome his departure.

  459. Irshad says:

    Dennis Ross, Isreals lawyer in the White House is FIRED!!!!


    The Leveretts are hired?

  460. fyi says:

    James Canning says: November 10, 2011 at 1:12 pm

    China’s position vs. the states around it is similar to Iran’s in that very many smaller states fear the rise of Chinese power.

    There is not a damn thing they can do about it either.

    They can go and create analogous fora to “Persian Gulf Cooperation Council” – extend ASEAN let us say – but it will not make one bit of difference for excepting Vietnam, they lack the coherence of the Han people.

    [I am not including Korea and Japan that are already semi-sovereign states under US hegemony.]

    What benefit does it acrue to India by taking an anti-Chinese position; for example?

    Or Vietnam?

    Or Indonesia?

    Certain facts must be accepted.

  461. kooshy says:

    Well again I missed one last proverb at the end of my last post, this one goes like this “ if you don’t wana’ be singled out, become same color as the rest”

  462. fyi says:

    James Canning says: November 10, 2011 at 1:30 pm

    Iran’s international standing is the best it has been in 250 years – strategic autonomy and the power to keep it.

    The Iranian people have never had a better government before.

    That was the thing about that exchange: the Frenchman never said anything else to articulate his views.

    Which – I think I phatomed on this forum a while back –

    We Euro-Americans are superior people by virtue of our culture, education, knowledge and history and offer you misguided and ignorant people the best way forward. To wit: you scrap you researches in sciences nuclear, nano, and biological and we will teach you how to shift and purify your excrement for your agricultural needs so that you would not pollute the Domain of the Immaculate Gaia.

  463. Karl says:

    “We all should bear in mind the utter stupidity and arrogance of Muammar Gaddafi, to believe public opinion in France, Britain and the US could be ignored by him. He ignored pleas by a number of diplomats to shut his mouth, to stop ranting on TV, otherwise military intervention would result.”

    Where did Libya came into this discussion?

    “I am of course well aware of feelings, such as those of FYI, that Iranians will be seen as “bush Negroes” if Iran accepts a negotiated resolution of the dispute.”

    No, why would Iran give up its completly legal right under the NPT?
    US, UK etc dont want to see a solution to this due israeli interests. Look, if the nuclear issue were suddenly solved, US, UK etc will only find another way to harass Iran. Iran is already sanctioned human rights abuses, supporting so called “terrorists” etc. US, UK doesnt seek a solution.

    “Does anyone doubt the accuracy of Slaughter’s statement?”
    Makes no sense, well obviously obama wasnt sincenere in his offer in the first place if he cant follow it.

    “I think you are mistaken to believe Obama does not want a resolution of Israel/Palestine problem. Oligarchic Jews control to large degree the narrative, and virtually control political funding for Democrats. So, what do you think Obama should be doing, that he is not doing?”
    Its not obama to decide his personal preferences on israel/palestine conflict. before obama was elected president he couldnt probably point out israel/palestine on a map, hes being forced to take a pro-israel stance of various reasons.

  464. kooshy says:


    – addition to my last post

    To be fair I personally don’t think Iran needs to be a nuclear armed nation (I am not saying nuclear capable nation), and I believe with all intentions this is also the policy of the current system in Iran (note that this was not the intention or the view of the Iranian system prior to the revolution), my view is based solely on regional and neighboring consequences of nuclear arms for Iran and is not based on the need to deter the US and Europe, since soberly do deter the west is not necessary or possible in case of Iran.

    Over all I believe fear of Iran for the west is not her possible nuclear arms or capability, but rather is her revolutionary ideology which the west correctly believes if not contained can spread and heart the western regional interests which to be fare west has been able to marginally contain in this past thirty some years.

    For this reason I believe the coming controlled changes in the Arab and none Arab Sunni countries in coming next few years will substantially reduce the fear of Shih revolutionary ideology spreading to likeminded key regional countries that the west has interest in, this in turn will make possible for the Iranian system (like China at the end of cultural revolution and when the communist ideology became effectively contained) more acceptable to the west for a rapprochement.
    I strongly believe the by-design possible coming changes in the region is somewhat a way to make the Iranian system more benign and acceptable to the western interests.

  465. James Canning says:


    We all should bear in mind the utter stupidity and arrogance of Muammar Gaddafi, to believe public opinion in France, Britain and the US could be ignored by him. He ignored pleas by a number of diplomats to shut his mouth, to stop ranting on TV, otherwise military intervention would result.

  466. James Canning says:


    And consider this comment by the Financial Times today: “The only option is to ratchet up the current mix of diplomacy and threat. Iran should be welcomed into the international community if it halts its nuclear programme.”

    I am of course well aware of feelings, such as those of FYI, that Iranians will be seen as “bush Negroes” if Iran accepts a negotiated resolution of the dispute.

  467. James Canning says:


    As Anne-Marie Slaughter notes in the FT today: “Today, if Barack Obama were to put that deal on the table [Turkish-Brazilian nuclear exchange], he would be hammered by his Republican opponents, in Congress and on the presidential campaign trail, for negotiating from weakness, affirming US decline, and so on.”

    Does anyone doubt the accuracy of Slaughter’s statement?

  468. James Canning says:


    I think you are mistaken to believe Obama does not want a resolution of Israel/Palestine problem. Oligarchic Jews control to large degree the narrative, and virtually control political funding for Democrats. So, what do you think Obama should be doing, that he is not doing?

  469. James Canning says:


    Israel’s warmongering should be condemned. But won’t be. Some sharp criticism would have been welcome.

    I can say with certainty that the UK wants a negotiated resolution of the dispute. Full stop.

    Iran should not make it easier for fanatical “supporters” of Israel right or wrong, in the US, to control or nearly control British Middle East policy.

  470. James Canning says:

    New York Times leader today (“The truth about Iran”): Russia and China have balked at further penalties while stalling on implementing those already approved.”

  471. Karl says:

    “Shouldn’t you be applauding a call for a negotiated resolution of the dispute?”

    Man, US/israel doesnt want a solution. The Iranian/US talks are what Israel/Palestine talks are, just a charade by US, Israel respective.

    But my point was that ban ki moon didnt even condemn the warmongering from Israel just put the blame on Iran.

  472. James Canning says:


    Is Amano an “American agent”? Or does he simply have a different posture than that of ElBaradei? Amono favors putting out in public some of the information that ElBaradei would likely withhold.

  473. James Canning says:


    We all know that Israel routinely violates rules of international law. Knowing this, and seeing it demonstrated time and time again, shouldn’t the focus be on how to achieve a negotiated resolution of the dispute?

  474. James Canning says:


    Shouldn’t you be applauding a call for a negotiated resolution of the dispute?

  475. James Canning says:


    I well understand that you and other Iranians quite rightfully resent the arrogance and stupidity of a number of advisers to western governments. But the issue is what is in the national interests of the Iranian people.

    Do you recall why “the Frenchman” thought the P5+1 offer to Iran was sufficient even if this was challenged by the Russian diplomat?

  476. Karl says:

    This is amazing, the weak, powerless, zero-carisma, the puppet – bank ki moon make a statement.

    UN warns against force in Iran nuclear standoff

    “He (Ban) reiterates his call for Iran’s compliance with all relevant resolutions of the Security Council and the board of governors of the International Atomic Energy Agency,” U.N. spokesman Martin Nesirky told reporters.”

    “”The secretary-general reiterates his belief that a negotiated rather than a military solution is the only way to resolve this issue,” he said”

    Note that no condemnations of Israel, oh no Iran that actually gets death threats and smeared by a politically motivated report is the one who gets the blame.
    If he friggin warns about military conflict why then doesnt he urge UNSC to stop israeli recklessness and illegal threats? Dont ban ki moon know what the #2:4 article of United Nation Charter:

    “4.All Members shall refrain in their international relations from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any state, or in any other manner inconsistent with the Purposes of the United Nations.”

    World is obviously led by weak leaders who act subjective to what the superpowers think is right.


  477. James Canning says:

    Dan Cooper,

    Bravo. Ahmadinejad denounces nuclear weapons and underlines the immorality of them, and the stupidity of them as well.

  478. James Canning says:

    Unknown Unknowns,

    You appear to overlook the fact Russia and China do not want an Iran armed with nukes. Both countries believe more sanctions would not facilitate the effort to achieve a negotiated resolution of the dispute. Iran would be very foolish to make it easier for another UNSC resolution to get adopted.

  479. kooshy says:


    “But we also recognize that US and Israel (and a few other countries) already have nuclear weapons, and that none of those countries is going to give them up no matter how many people complain loudly about the unfairness of it.”

    In that case Eric you should guide the rest of the world which (at least for this last sixty years) has been continually threaten, invaded and occupied how and with what they are supposed to protect themselves.

    As we have explored this before, I agree and honor your good humanely intentions ( world free of nuclear arms) but I am sure deep inside you know in the real world that’s not going to happen, perhaps until the first people who became nuclear power which so far, are also the first and the only nation that have proudly used their nuclear arms against an adversary, to become the first people in a true and serious way to destroy their stock pile of nuclear arms (by far the largest in the world), this can only be done by the American people and not the American government or the American military, after all we the people are the ones who are continuously voting for the sneakiest and bulliest of the politicians we can find to bully the rest of the world to protect our interest. Up until then like what this Old Persian proverb implies “Death is fair but only for the neighbors” will not work and is not fair. I can venture a guess that till then the rest of the world will do whatever they can, and use whatever means they find to protect themselves against a bullying power who is only interested in her own so called interests.

    At the end I leave you with this other old Persian proverb which says “ The lamp that is needed in one’s home is forbidden to be given to the mosque”

  480. James Canning says:


    Warmongering neocons in the US try to argue the US gained substantially from idiotic and illegal invasion of Iraq. They argue this to give themselves cover for setting up the idiotic and illegal invasion of Iraq. It seems surprising you would want to help give cover the fantaical “supporters” of Israel right or wrong.

  481. James Canning says:

    Unknown Unknowns,

    Does the US refuse to acknowledge the sovereignty of the Iranian people? I don’t think this is a correct statement.

  482. James Canning says:

    Anne-Marie Slaughter writes today in the Financial Times (“Our least bad option for negotiating with Tehran”): “Western governments should now turn back to Turkey and Brazil.” Good advice.

    Slaughter makes the point that Iran’s enriching to 20% is far more dangerous than its enriching to 5%. She does not note that the US virtually forced Iran to enrich to 20% when the US so foolishly blocked Iran’s IAEA application to refuel the TRR.

  483. James Canning says:


    You should read David Pilling’s comments in the Financial Times today (“China needs more than a five-year charm offensive”). Vietnam, Japan, India and Russia all “in their way fear China’s growing power”. This clearly is an accurate statement. No need for US to try to stir up fear. (Which to me would be an absurd thing to do,)

  484. fyi says:

    paul says: November 10, 2011 at 11:08 am

    I think that US is talking from both sides of her mouth when it comes to China.

    What she is doing, is that she is tryin to get a number of other states – such as India and Vietnam – to assume an overtly ant-China position; but with no cost to US.

    And US will continue on her merry way trading with China while these other states carry the burden of confronting China for no discernible reason.

  485. James Canning says:

    Financial Times leader today: “Halting Iran at the nuclear threshold”. Quote: “But Tehran has rebuffed every overture the US has made [to resolve the dispute].” Obama may very well believe his administration has acted in good faith in effort to negotiate a resolution of the problem.

  486. Unknown Unknowns says:

    Paul: Methinks some of your criticism here and in the past of our hosts is fair and well-taken. But to be fair, their reference to China in the current post had to do with the nature of the (general) rapproachment that Nixon/ Kissinger effected, and the opening it created. What came later and what it has become now were not the subject of the reference. So no, the Leveretts are not suggesting that Team Weasel extend to Iran the iron fist in a velvet glove of Full Spectrum Dominanc, which as you rightly point out is its stance toward the Beebol’s Rebublic: In Your Face From Outer Space (and from the 7th Fleet, of course).

  487. Unknown Unknowns says:

    In case anyone was wondering why Iran does not respond to Uncle Weasel by calling him on *his* factual (rather than alleged) violations of the NTP (to whit, failure to reduce its stockpiles of nuclear weapons, failure to refrain from development and testing of a new generation of nuclear weapons, failure to refrain from *using* nuclear weapons (e.g., depleted uranium), and failure to renounce first use of nuclear weapons…) – each of these violations of treaty requirements incumbent on nuclear power signatories is sufficient reason for non-power signatories to reneg from their commitments to the treaty. (The reason non-nuclear power states would ever consider signing on was that nuclear power states committed to disarming themselves, with several immediate restrictions, some of which I listed above.) But anyway, the reason Iran does not call Team Weasel on its violations is that she knows not to treat a child as a grown-up.

    Besides, there is also the fact that as there is no such thing as international law (only treaties between sovereign states), and as Uncle Weasel refuses to recognize the sovereignty of the Iranian people and their duly elected constitution and government, all this huffing and puffing about violations of this and that are nothing but the pungent effulgence of a chicken-hawk who is, alas, more chicken than hawk.

  488. paul says:

    I find it fascinating that the Leveretts continue to claim that the US invasion of Iraq was a strategic disaster. This is a foundational assertion for the Leveretts, yet it is blatantly fundamentally wrong. To believe that the invasion of Iraq was a strategic setback for the US, you have to believe that the US is seeking peace, harmony, understanding and kumbaya. But domination is the declared intent, as well as the manifest intent, driving US policy, and that means MILITARY POWER, and the Iraq war paid off massively in terms of enhancing US military domination of the near east and central asia. This region, tagged by Brzezinski as the keystone region globally, has now been effectively secured by US forces coupled with US/Nato alliances. Sure, the people of the region think that the US is akin to Nazi Germany now, as a threatening rogue state, but what do they matter? No more does public opinion at home matter. Even in the US, where militarism is drummed into the population much as was done to Prussians by relentless conditioning, America’s wars and global domination are not popular. In Europe, they are wildly unpopular. Yet US and allied elites ignore all that. How much, then, do they care about public opinion in the ‘keystone’ region of the world, where all the ‘undeveloped peoples’ ruin things by insisting on living on top of resources that we claim the right to control? They don’t. They use it where it suits them, and ignore it, or – if need be – crush it, where it doesn’t. In Libya, they use public discontent. In Bahrain, they crush it.

    And how ironic is it that the Leveretts would cite the US relationship with China as an example of enlightened coexistence! The US is clearly pursuing a policy of cold war against China, pushing its forces against China on all sides, while creating a ring of alliances seeking to choke China, and waging wars seeking to control China’s access to resources. Many foreign policy geniuses have pointed out that China has benefited, in the end, from deals with the new government in Iraq: so what? The point is that the US hand is firmly on the spigot there. THE ONLY REASON WE PROBABLY WON’T HAVE A THIRD WORLD WAR WITH CHINA is that China is afraid of us. That is how belligerent US policy towards China is, and this even though the US is intertwined with China economically and financially. EVEN SO the US is pursuing a bellicose policy towards China, not a policy of coexistence! Is that not stunning? The US depends on China in many ways, and is intertwined with China in many ways, and still US and allied elites will not rest until they DOMINATE China.

    All of this is, again, blatantly obvious and well known to the Leveretts, as it is to all commentators. The question that we, as citizens, should be asking is why our intelligentsia continue to misrepresent US policy to us. If even those who appear to bravely critique US policy are essentially defending it by misrepresenting it, blatantly, as fundamentally benign in intent, what does this mean? What does this tell us?

  489. Unknown Unknowns says:

    Eric says, “Could it be that Russia has grown a post-Libya backbone?”

    No. Methinks Russia’s accession to the WTO must be solidified and Putin fully back in the saddle. At that time, if the Eurozone crisis continues, as is looking likely with Italy teetering on the brink, and if the bankruptcy of the US, both moral and financial, gets worse, as is likely, then methinks Putin will humiliate the Axis of Weasels, possibly by making a huge sanctions-busting economic &/ or military deal with Iran.

  490. fyi says:

    Neo says: November 10, 2011 at 10:37 am

    You are right about Western Arrogance.

    I watched a discussion of Iran nuclear case several years ago in which one of the panelis – a Frenchman – when reminded of the inadequacy and insufficiency of the EU-3 offer by a Ruusian – stated: “It was good enough for them (Iranians).”

    And men such as him advise governments.

  491. Neo says:


    I understand where you are coming from. But I just don’t agree.

    You should look at the article on AJ that I posted. It talks about racism in this area. Basically what we have is a kind of nuclear Apartheid in the world.

    And the simple truth is that, NPT signatory or not, no country with nuclear weapons, especially not USA or Israel, has the slightest intention of ever giving them up. Now, factor in the fact that both these countries’ regimes are ruthless mass murderers, and you may see that other countries need nuclear deterrents so as to reduce the threat of war.

    Personally, I wish no one had nuclear weapons or any other WMD. But, hypothetically, if you have them and you have them targeted at me, then I would be a fool not to protect myself. And you would be a fool telling me I don’t really need them… Why do you need them then?

    There is a total assumption of superiority in Western discourse on many levels. Too many to count. This kind of discourse often starts with something like: ‘we were the first to…’ – the kind of opener that usually is followed with a bold faced lie. There is no one truly campaigning for disarmament in the West. Something to do with fear, I think. But then fear too is assumed to belong to Western people… As if Western nuclear bombs are not scary to the rest of the world.

    So if it’s not racism, then it’s a pathological lack of empathy for fellow human beings. Give it another name if you want. It still feels like racist exceptionalism to me.

  492. Karl says:

    While China doesnt say that they will agree on more sanctions, they are atleast critical of the constant threats and sanctions against Iran.

    “China backs Russia on Iran’s nuclear program”


  493. Rehmat says:

    Ben-Eliezer: ‘Stop those two fools attacking Iran’

    Former Israeli defense minister, Binyamin Ben-Eliezer, told fellow Labour Party members: “Every citizen in the country has to be worried that these two fools, Netanyahu and Barak, are planning an attack on Iran,” quoted by Jewish daily Forward on November 8, 2011.

    Benji Netanyahu has claimed that the latest IAEA reoprt proves he was right about Iran’s intention to produce a nuclear bomb – and French President Nicolas Sarkozy was wrong calling him a liar. Benji’s ‘smoking gun’, the latest IAEA report, itself claims that all its allegations against Islamic Republic are not based on its staff findings but on informations provided by various foreign government agencies. Interestingly, the said report also targets another of Israel’s enemy, Pakistan without mentioning Israeli and India’s illegal nuclear stockpiles. A case of Zionists killing two birds with one stone!

    Last week, Israeli President Shimon Peres had said that a military attack against Iran is growing increasingly by the days.

    On Tuesday, Israeli defense miniter, Ehud Barak, backed-down from an immediate military attack on Iranian nuclear facilities, “War is not a picnic. We want a picnic. We don’t want a war,” Barak told Israel Radio.

    Yossi Alpher, former director of Jeffee Center for Strategic Studies at Tel Aviv University wrote in daily Forward (November 9, 2011) that Israeli threats of a pre-emptive strike against Iran’s nuclear infrastructure are not going to happen in the near future. It reflects an Israeli attempt to generate strong international sanctions against Iran. “Right now, though, hype, pressure and deterrence appear to be name of the game,” wrote Yossi.

    According to well-respected Israeli journalist Nahum Barnea, the entire Israeli security-intelligence establishment, some senior cabinet members and foreign ZOGs leaders have advised Benji and Barack not to carry out their suicidal military attack against Iran – at least for the time being. Nahum has claimed in his recent column in Yediot Aharonot that Gen. Benny Gants, head of IOF; Gen. Aviv Cochavi, head of IOF intelligence; Mossad director Tamir Pardo and Shin Bet head Yoram Cohen, are all against Israeli strike against Iran without an active participation of US forces on Israeli side.

    The former Mossad director, Gen. Meir Dagan, reportedly called Netanyahu-Barak’s promoting a military adventure against Iran, as “the stupidest idea I have ever heard“. So what is holding back these Zionist evildoers? Because they fear the Israeli attack could become the end of Israel – Tens of thousands of missiles and rockets from Iran, Hizbullah, Syria and Hamas falling all over Israel; a regional war that could last for years; attacks on Israeli targets abroad; world-wide rage against the Zionist entity, already isolated from most of the world nations and creating a unified Arab support for Iran against Israel.

    The predictions that the Islamic Republic will soon acquire a nuclear bomb have been parroted for the last 30 years. During that period western ZOGs and press have claimed repeatedly that Islamic Republic is about to join the nuclear club. Such a result is always declared “unacceptable” and a possible reason for military action, with “all options on the table” to prevent upsetting the Muslim East strategic balance dominated by the USrael.

    Since Yukiya Amano took over as head of IAEA, the agency’s reports has always reflected US-Israel agenda. Why? Because, according to US embassy cables, published by Guardian on December 2, 2010, proves that Amano is an American agent.


  494. Dan Cooper says:

    Ahmadinejad put it beautifully in the link Anon provided:

    “The Iranian nation is wise. It won’t build two bombs against 20,000 [nuclear] bombs you have.

    But it builds something you can’t respond to: Ethics, decency, monotheism and justice.”

    “Why are you ruining the prestige of the [UN nuclear] agency for absurd US claims?” Mr. Ahmadinejad asked,

  495. WTF says:

    Eric A. Brill says:
    November 10, 2011 at 8:39 am

    What struck me as questionable about Wilbur’s comment was that he wasn’t against nuclear proliferation per se; in fact he flatly stated that he wouldn’t mind Iran getting nukes if it wasn’t run by “tyrannical theocrats”. Singling out Iran seems sketchy considering that the IRI (which has never initiated a war) is constantly threatened by a tyrannical, theocratic regime that has initiated many wars and possesses nuclear weapons.

    We hear bullshit like this often, “Israel’s nuclear weapons are not a threat, they need them because they are surrounded by enemies bent on their destruction. Iran wants nuclear weapons to wipe Israel off the map.” There is a ring of discrimination (if not overwhelming ignorance) in that mentality. Iran’s official position on nuclear weapons has been made clear and their overall military posture is defensive in nature; why all the doomsday concern? I, like Iran, feel that a ME free of WMDs is the best for the region and the world. Like you (and I imagine the Iranian leadership), I realize that this is not going to happen.

    I view all WMD as a blight on humanity and they disgust me. Like you, I wish that nuclear weapons didn’t exist, but am realistic enough to acknowledge that they aren’t going anywhere. However, given this, and given the tens of thousands of nuclear weapons on this planet, I view Iran’s possession of a nuclear deterrent as lessening the likelihood of nuclear weapons being used.

  496. fyi says:

    Wilbur says: November 9, 2011 at 8:45 pm

    Thank you for your comments.

    The Annex in the latest report on Iran – even if it were true – is devoid of legal content.

    NPT is not there to gauge intent, only actual deeds.

    In case of deeds, there is no evidentiary support for an existing nuclear weapon in Iran.

    I would like to draw your attention to the existing theses, by a Brazilian graduate student, on the design of a thermo-nuclear weapon. Does that imply the existence of such a weapon in Brazil? I think not until facts are established.

    In regards to the Iranian Election of 2009; the election was quite transparent. There were tens of thousands of local folks present in the 40,000 or so voting precincts.

    I do not accept your notion of transparency; it is a requirement and notion that you are foisting on Iran arbitrarily.

    And what is this about “establishing a pattern”? This is not some sort of Trial by a Duely Authorized Court of Law.

    In fact, there is no such court in this case.

    This regime or another regime makes no difference; Iranian strategic autonomy is the real issue here and no responsible government in Iran will retreat from that. And war will not alter this either.

  497. Anon says:


    about your 3 questions on armscontrolwonk.com — it is an implicit right of NPT member states to have a latent nuclear weapons capability.

    Further, the IAEA (unfortunately) does not have the legal authority to make sure memebr states do not weaponize. This was done on purpose of course by third world diplomats.


    Our friend Pierre Goldschmidt says:


    “…the Department of Safeguards [at the IAEA] doesn’t have the legal authority it needs to fulfill its mandate and to provide the assurances the international community is expecting from its verification activities. ”

    Well, that’s really too bad but this was done by design.

    The third world diplomats who hashed out the NPT and CSAs made sure their national sovereignty would not be sacrificed to the IAEA/UNSC/NWSs.

    In the end, this seems to have been sensible from their perspective: the IAEA is not helping 3rd world nations with their nuclear programs, it is not preventing disasters in first world nations, and it is not pressuring the first world nations (NWSs) to disarm at an “early date”.

  498. Anon says:

    Christian Science Monitor (non Zionist US news source) says this about IAEA report:


  499. Neo wrote to Wilbur:

    “Why are you worried about Iran possessing weapons rather than the US? Or Israel for that matter? Are you racist?”

    I can’t speak for Wilbur, but please recognize that many of us who oppose nuclear weapons proliferation — to Iran or anyone else — fully recognize the unfairness to which your first two questions refer. But we also recognize that US and Israel (and a few other countries) already have nuclear weapons, and that none of those countries is going to give them up no matter how many people complain loudly about the unfairness of it.

    It’s certainly appropriate to demand that Israel sign the NPT and a Safeguards Agreement — entirely futile, but appropriate nonetheless. We just don’t think the shortcomings of Israel, the US or any other country are reason enough for Iran to have nuclear weapons too. Simple as that. Call it racism if you want, but I’m not sure how that conclusion jibes with the possession of weapons by countries of several different races — Pakistan, India and North Korea, for example. I think you’ll find the real reason instead is simply a reluctant acceptance of reality. Not a reality we like, but reality nonetheless.

  500. http://www.nytimes.com/2011/11/10/world/europe/russia-dismisses-calls-for-new-un-sanctions-on-iran.html?_r=1&ref=global-home

    Headline: “Russia Dismisses Calls for Stronger U.N. Sanctions on Iran”

    Could it be that Russia has grown a post-Libya backbone?

  501. Neo says:

    The US has thousands of nuclear weapons. And the US is one of the most barbaric and violent regimes in the world today, second only to Israel, if we look at their global murder rates on a per capita basis. Why are you worried about Iran possessing weapons rather than the US? Or Israel for that matter? Are you racist?

  502. Unknown Unknowns says:

    Barclays Says Italy Is Finished: “Mathematically Beyond Point Of No Return”


  503. kooshy says:

    Why do the US media believe the worst about Iran?

    Brian Whitaker
    guardian.co.uk, Wednesday 9 November 2011 10.36 EST


  504. pirouz_2 says:

    By the way I believe that the previous two questions should be of sigificant interest to any truly patriotic American (ie. an Amrican who is anti-war) who does not wish to see his/her country in another criminal war which would benefit (doubtfuly) only the 1% at the cost of most certain misery of the 99%.

  505. pirouz_2 says:

    The second question would be how deep such a facility (to produce nanodiamonds and all the other goodies) should be burried under the ground to make it possible to survive a nuclear attack on the facilities location?

  506. pirouz_2 says:

    I am afraid I am a bit different in my “interests” from most readers on this site. So I have a different question, and I was wondering if anyone with the knowledge of nuclear physics could answer this.
    Let’s say a country is crazy enough to be obssessed with purely hypothetical capabilities. Let’s further say that the aforementioned country is obssesed with getting as close to creating a nuclear warhead as possible without actually creating one.
    I know that the nanodiamonds have their application in purely civilian industries, but how much having the capability to produce nanodiamonds (with the method patented by this Ukrainian scientist) help in bringing the aforementioned country closer to actually being capable of making a nuclear warhead on very short notice?

  507. kooshy says:

    Congratulation to “b” and the Moon of Alabama, for your big catch

    IAEA’s ‘Soviet Nuclear Scientist’ Never Worked on Weapons

    by Gareth Porter, November 10, 2011


    “Iran has an aggressive program to develop its nanotechnology sector, and it includes as one major focus nanodiamonds, as blogger Moon of Alabama has pointed out. That blog was the first source to call attention to Danilenko’s nanodiamond background. “

  508. WTF says:

    Ron Paul on the Iran Threat Reduction Act of 2011


    I quote Ron Paul; “I would like to express my concerns over the Iran Threat Reduction Act of 2011 and my opposition to it being brought to the Floor for a vote. Let us be clear on one critical matter: the sanctions against Iran mandated by this legislation are definite steps toward a US attack on Iran. They will also, if actually applied, severely disrupt global trade and undermine the US economy, thereby harming our national security.

    I quote Ron Paul; “I am surprised and disturbed that the committee viewed this aggressive legislation to be so bipartisan and uncontroversial that a recorded vote was not even called.

    I quote Ron Paul; “Some may argue that we are pursuing sanctions so as to avoid war with Iran, but recent history teaches us otherwise. For how many years were sanctions placed on Iraq while we were told they were necessary to avoid war? Thousands of innocent Iraqis suffered and died under US sanctions and still the US invaded, further destroying the country. Are we safer after spending a trillion dollars or more to destroy Iraq and then rebuild it?

    I quote Ron Paul; “These new sanctions against Iran increasingly target other countries that seek to trade with Iran. The legislation will severely punish foreign companies or foreign subsidiaries of US companies if they do not submit to the US trade embargo on Iran. Some 15 years after the Iran Sanctions Act of 1996 failed to bring Iran to its knees, it is now to be US foreign policy to threaten foreign countries and companies.

    I quote Ron Paul; “During this mark-up one of my colleagues argued that if Mercedes-Benz wants to sell trucks to Iran, they should not be allowed to do business in the United States. Does anyone believe this is a good idea? I wonder how the Americans working at the Mercedes-Benz factory in Tuscaloosa County, Alabama would feel about banning Mercedes from the United States. Or perhaps we might ask the 7,600 Americans who work in the BMW factory in Spartanburg, SC how they would feel. Should the American consumer be denied the right to purchase these products? Is the United States really prepared to take such aggressive and radical action against its NATO ally Germany?

    I quote Ron Paul; “Likewise, the application of the sanctions in this legislation would have a dramatic impact on US commercial and diplomatic relations with Russia and China, who both do business with Iran. It would impose strong sanctions on these countries and would prohibit foreign business leaders – and their spouses and children – from entering the United States. Do we want to start a trade war – or worse – with Russia and China?

    I quote Ron Paul; “The Iran Threat Reduction Act authorizes what will no doubt be massive amounts of US taxpayer money to undermine the Iranian government and foment another “Green Revolution” there. We will establish and prop up certain factions over others, send them enormous amounts of money, and attempt to fix any resulting elections so that our preferred candidates win. Considering the disturbing aftermath of our “democracy promotion” operations in places like Egypt, Iraq, Libya, where radical forces have apparently come out on top, it may be fair to conclude that such actions actually undermine US national security rather than bolster it.

    I quote Ron Paul; “Sanctions do not work. They are precursors to war and usually lead to war. They undermine our economy and our national security. They result in terrible, unnecessary suffering among the civilian population in the target countries and rarely even inconvenience their leaders. We must change our foreign policy from one of interventionism and confrontation to cooperation and diplomacy. This race to war against Iran is foolhardy and dangerous. As with the war on Iraq, the arguments for further aggression and war on Iran are based on manipulations and untruths. We need to learn our lesson and reject this legislation and the push for war.”

  509. WTF says:

    That first sentence was not complete, should read:

    While I appreciate your conciliatory tone, you are either naïve or being disingenuous to describe the idea that the worldwide uproar over Iran’s internal politics (propagated mainly by Western media) is contrived by foreign forces with ulterior motives as baseless (ie “crap”).

  510. WTF says:

    Wilbur says:
    November 9, 2011 at 9:13 pm

    In fact your use of “a foreign conspiracy” as a direct cause is a clear example of the “crap” we are both talking about. Sadly this meme of some foreign conspiracy is a hallmark of the rhetoric emanating out of the Islamic world.

    While I appreciate your conciliatory tone, you are either naïve or being disingenuous to claim that the idea that the worldwide uproar over Iran’s internal politics (propagated mainly by Western media) is baseless (ie “crap”). You acknowledge that foreign forces actively seek regime change in Iran, but somehow put it beyond them to exacerbate domestic Iranian political turmoil to achieve that? Furthermore, the concept of foreign intervention in the Muslim world (particularly Iran) is one based on history and not one concocted out of thin air. To imply that it is, again, is either uninformed or disingenuous.

    You also dodged my questions. Regarding the nuclear issue, what/how exactly has Iran obstructed? Specifically where has Iran stonewalled when legally obligated to acquiesce. And I know that you have since deemed the elections a moot point (after deciding to interject it into this discussion), but please provide the evidence that leads you to believe that the election was rigged.

  511. jay says:

    Wilbur says:
    November 9, 2011 at 7:57 pm


    I am sorry that you felt offended. My earlier comment was not meant to condescend. It was meant to suggest that you may have rushed your message.

    I see now that it was not the case and that you were in fact genuinely thinking (with contemplation) what you wrote.

    Okay! You wish to debate what you call “the issues”. What issues do you wish to debate? The character of the government of Iran? The technical aspects of the NPT? The specifics of the latest IAEA report? Iranian election of 2008? A conflation of some subset of the above and possibly more? Something else?

    Based on what measure or measures would you wish to evaluate any or all of the topics of the debate? On an absolute scale? On a relative scale? On a scale of practice? Perception?

    What would you hope to gain from this debate? A new finding? A change of mind? Entertainment? Just an engagement?

    I ask these questions because of your insistence that you made your statement (the one I replied to earlier) knowingly and with deliberation. This, along with your other posts I read before this writing, suggests that you may wish to engage in an ad hoc debate – one in which you have used the perceptions from the Iranian election to bootstrap a baseless and extralimital report by the IAEA. But, it is good to find out using your own words.

    I would be pleased to receive your response.

  512. Anon says:

    Wilbur: let me make it easy — the NPT essentially (though not on purpose) allows for a latent nuclear weapons capability in non-nuclear weapons states. This is bug (or feature) of the NPT, depending on where you sit.

    e.g. Brazil, Argentina and Japan are in similar situation as Iran.

    The focus is on Iran because it is not a friend of the West.

  513. Wilbur says:


    Thanks for the reference. I will read that later tonight along with a few others I found. As a note I don’t entirely by the official Western narrative because I find much of it is clouded by regime change proponents. Conversely I don’t by the official Iranian narrative 100% reliable simply because they have been playing “cloak and daggers” for to long on this issue.


  514. Wilbur says:


    After I penned that post I realized I should have also commented on the Western/US position. While i do question Iran’s intentions I do also respective to the Western narrative. Yes the West has genuine concerns but i also believe these concerns are being over ridden by regime change proponents. Frankly with all the “crap” flying around it becomes almost impossible to tell what the “truth” is anymore. I am at a loss on how to resolve this dilemma when both so sides so distrust the other. Trust is the key word and that must be gained if we ever hope to resolve the issue. To do that the reactionaries on both side need to be sidelined so we cam divorce the “crap” from this debate.

    Respective to the elections I strongly disagree with your stance. In fact your use of “a foreign conspiracy” as a direct cause is a clear example of the “crap” we are both talking about. Sadly this meme of some foreign conspiracy is a hallmark of the rhetoric emanating out of the Islamic world. I recognize the West bears much blame but so does the Islamic world. Continually blaming the convenient scape goat (i.e. Great Satan and da evil joos) does nothing to resolve the issue but instead means some issues will never get resolved because they are incapable of ever realizing some problems are mostly home grown.


  515. Anon says:

    Bibi Jon,

    also, Iran needs extra stockpile of 20% LEU in case its supply gets bombed.

  516. BiBiJon says:

    James C,

    “Perhaps you can explain why Iran is enriching to 20% far beyond needs in next several years. When this enrichment clearly stirs up dangerous fears in some of the Gulf countries.”

    Very simple economic reasons. It is not cost effective to create a whole production line, storage facility, etc. and then shut it down, only to set it up again, and again on an as needed basis. What Iran produces is monitored by IAEA for non-diversion. It is perfectly legal under NPT, it’s production was forced on Iran, and her uses for it is not just legitimate, they are humanitarian.


    “For the man in the street, the simple math that Iran can get to 95% from 20%, faster than from 3.5%, is something he can comprehend. And he is not told Iran has offered to cease production of the 20% U. Israel lobby largely controls the discourse obtainable in US newspapers, network TV news, etc.”

    Iran, nor anybody else, is going to concern themselves with a hypothetical average man’s ignorance. Though I’m not sure where you get your ‘average man’ assessments.

    “A majority of the Arab public now see a nuclear-armed Iran as being better for the Middle East.”

    From http://www.brookings.edu/reports/2010/0805_arab_opinion_poll_telhami.aspx

    It would be easier to engage you on this issue if you spoke on first person terms. Specifically what are YOUR concerns?

  517. Wilbur says:


    Thank you for your response. You bring up some interesting points and thus please find below my counter points:

    1). The IAEA is not a disarmament agency: agree whole heartedly with you on this one. However I believe you have mischaracterized the current IAEA report. The report is simply a report written by an oversight group that being the IAEA. As all know the NPT is for all practical purposes the mandate of the IAEA. As it pertains to the subject of the disarmament the ICJ said on 7/8/96 “There exists an obligation to pursue in good faith and bring to a conclusion negotiations leading to nuclear disarmament in all its aspects under strict and effective international control.”. That is exactly what the IAEA did and in fact they also happen to be a toothless organization on their own. It is up to the nations of the world to be the “teeth” to enforce this or for Iran to resolve it themselves-that is the intention of the report nothing more.

    2). Iranian 2009 Presidential elections: My point was not to debate the validity of the election that is largely a mute issue at this juncture despite what I may believe. The purpose of drawing the connection was to demonstrate a pattern the regime has practiced for a long time. In both cases Iran was far from transparent and, anything not in line with the regime narrative has always been characterized as some grand conspiracy and ruthlessly suppressed. Those are the facts and a damning testament of the regime’s intention to never objectively and transparently deal with the issues.

    I hope that better explains my points and I look forward to your response. And for the record if the tyrannical theocrats weren’t running Iran I wouldn’t be to worried if they had a nuclear bomb. I wouldn’t because I could simply trust them and that my friend is the operative word behind this whole mess. Neither side trusts the other so it has largely become a game of vague facts accompanied with a mountain of lies to date!


  518. Fiorangela says:

    the only democracy in the Middle East weighs in

    from Jewish Daily Forward:
    Attack on Iran Unlikely — for Now
    “Not Off The Hook: Even if Israel does not strike Iran immediately, military action may come eventually.”


    “The infighting in Israel over whether or not to attack Iran, which went public more than a week ago and will continue unless and until the bombs start falling, shows this country at its best and worst. So far, the best is winning.

    Until Israel’s No. 1 journalist, Nahum Barnea, exposed it in his Yediot Aharonot column, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Ehud Barak had been going ahead with plans to attack Iran’s nuclear facilities. This, despite the opposition of the entire security-intelligence establishment, other senior cabinet ministers and all foreign leaders whose opinions counted. But the uproar that has followed Barnea’s column, which was almost certainly informed by some of those security-intelligence establishment figures, seems to have stopped Netanyahu and Barak in their tracks.


    And this is good. This is a reprieve from something like doomsday. For the first time ever, the Israeli media have been filled day after day with estimates of the sort of blowback that’s likely to occur after Israel tries to take out Iran’s nuclear facilities. Some highlights: Tens of thousands of missiles from Iran, Hezbollah and Syria falling all over the country; a regional war that could last for years; terror attacks on Israeli targets abroad; worldwide rage at Israel for starting the war and Middle Eastern unity around Iran.

    The one danger I haven’t seen discussed is the worst one of all: the possibility that Iran or another enemy might fire biological weapons at this country, which could have about the same ultimate effect as nukes.”

  519. Persian Gulf says:

    I don’t understand, with a report like the latest one, what the point for Iran still being part of NPT is. If the IAEA wants to publish a highly politicized report like this every few months, and the anti-Iran camp goes all the way to threaten the country by any means, what is Iran’s gain in being part of that s****y agency? why shouldn’t we leave NPT altogether? isn’t the ultimate threat war which is already being waged, covert and overt, anyway?

    I hope the IAEA’s claims about Iran are 100% accurate so that Iran could leave NPT comfortably with the bomb within her grasp. only if that could be the case.

    I think, the Italian crisis will drag the whole Europe and probably the western economy down. Iran might not get another chance to leave this useless agency. it’s clear people here didn’t give a damn to the report regarding Iran’s nuclear program. rather the talk is all about Greece, Italy, economy…. Nobody cares if Iran leaves NPT or not.

  520. Wilbur says:


    Hmmm if I were to summarize your post it would most likely say “emotionally challenged nitwits shouldn’t be posting about this subject. Please revise your post so it is in compliance with the preordained narrative acceptable to those posting here”. Thanks for enlightening the unenlightened that being off course me.

    Well instead of pedantically treating me like a five year old why not consider me an equal as I do you and debate the my points. I don’t hold my view to be universally right but until someone substantively address my points and convinces me they are right we are not going to get anywhere. Well gotta go it’s time for me to get my diaper changed!


  521. Wilbur says:


    As a matter of fact I did find it quite disappointing that Obama decided to ignore the Iranian offer. However I understood their rationale why that being it was in their minds just another maneuver by the regime to avoid being fully transparent. The US wants them to fully disclose their activities which they have not to date but instead have actively ignored numerous request to do so. Agreeing to some aspects of the inspections does not constitute compliance as the regime seems to believe. The fact of the mater is that Iran is pursuing a course of action that closely mirrors Pakistan’s drive in becoming a nuclear weaponized state. Not to mention M.A Khan the father of Pakistan’s so called “Islamic Bomb” was also the very person who supplied the know how/plans to Iran that allowed them to cross the threshold of creating nuclear material. So yes it was disappointing Obama didn’t take the opening Iran provided but it must be considered in context of why Iran did it–did Iran really want to resolve the issue or not? The evidence in my mind points to just another diversion to buy time. Now I could be wrong and I do not for a minute believe the West has been transparent in their efforts either–of course not forgetting the hawks in D.C. who’s goal is regime change and their willingness to use anything to accomplish it.

    Frankly in my view you have two groups that are playing a zero sum game and with that mindset nothing constructive is ever going to get done. Quite a mess.

    As for Israel assassinating Iranian scientists I would ask what proof has Iran offered up? To date almost nothing. Even recently when they implicated the US and Israel in these assassinations they said they had “100 documents” proving it. And, yet again they made a claim without releasing the documents they say they have. If you have these I would more than willing to look at them but until then this claim is nothing more than speculative.


  522. Rehmat says:

    On Monday, the Russell Tribunal on Palestine (RTP) completed its two-days session in Cape Town (South Africa). In its unanimous verdict the RTP found that the Zionist regime is a racist and apartheid entity as defined under international law. In their recommendations, the jury called upon the prosecutor of the International Criminal Court to initiate an investigation into to the international crimes committe by Israel; Palestine to accede to the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court; and the UN General Assembly to convene a special session to “consider the question os apartheid against Palestinian people” including considering the roles of individuals, organizations, corporations and all public and private bodies which have been material in assisting Israel in its apartheid policies. (BTW: This is not going to happen under international law as all the five UNSC veto-powers are guilty of collaboration with the Zionist-regime in the past)…….


  523. James Canning says:


    The warmongers trying to arrange for an attack on Iran need the Iranian enriching to 20%, to help sell the war. If Iran stops enriching to 20%, obviously Gulf countries will not be able to tell William Hague they are worried sick about Iran’s enriching to 20%. Hague himself clearly sees the enriching to 20% as indicating a possible desire to go on to weapons-grade.

  524. James Canning says:

    Writing in the Daily Telegraph Nov. 9th, Con Coughlin states: “Most experts believe Iran will have the means to build a bomb within a year.”


    The fact Iran enriches U to 20% is taken as proof the Iranian government will then go on to enrich to weapons-grade.

  525. WTF says:

    James Canning says:
    November 9, 2011 at 7:18 pm

    And he is not told Iran has offered to cease production of the 20% U

    So what makes you think that people will hear about Iran ceasing enriching to 20%?

  526. WTF says:

    James Canning says:
    November 9, 2011 at 7:09 pm

    Sorry, but Hague pushing for more sanctions is hardly “The British Government making it clear Britain opposes an illegal and idiotic attack on Iran”.

    Then there is also this:


    British officials say that if Washington presses ahead it will seek, and receive, UK military help for any mission, despite some deep reservations within the coalition government.

    You can try to spin this into the UK Government playing a constructive role in resolving the impasse, but I recommend that you don’t, for your credibility’s sake.

  527. James Canning says:


    For the man in the street, the simple math that Iran can get to 95% from 20%, faster than from 3.5%, is something he can comprehend. And he is not told Iran has offered to cease production of the 20% U. Israel lobby largely controls the discourse obtainable in US newspapers, network TV news, etc.

  528. James Canning says:


    Yes, the US and Israel seem to have provided the intel that was used for the IAEA report. And, as Philip Giraldi points out, the US and Israel really cannot be trusted on this score.

    Bret Stephens in the Wall Street Journal yesterday advised Obama to attack Iran to imporve his re-election chances in 2012.

  529. James Canning says:


    Perhaps you can explain why Iran is enriching to 20% far beyond needs in next several years. When this enrichment clearly stirs up dangerous fears in some of the Gulf countries.

    There seems to be an effort to US newspapers not even to mention Iran’s offer to cease production of 20% U. Wall Street Journal today had lengthy article about Iranian nuclear programme, and mde it appear Iran failed to accept the nuclear exchange within the time limit. What time limit?

  530. James Canning says:


    William Hague continues to make clear Britain wants a negotiated resolution of the dispute. Ergo, UK does not want US or Israeli attack on Iran.

  531. WTF says:

    James Canning says:
    November 9, 2011 at 5:30 pm

    The British Government will do the American people a very great service if they make clear Britain opposes an illegal and idiotic attack on Iran.

    Good luck with that! If you think that even might happen, we could place a little wager…I have 50 bucks saying no chance.

    P.S. – I’m also taking bets on whether hell will freeze over if anyone wants some of that action.

  532. BiBiJon says:

    James Canning says:
    November 9, 2011 at 5:24 pm

    Are you familiar with the events/chronology that forced Iran to start enriching to 20% ?

    A quick recap:

    Iran has operated a research reactor at a university in Tehran for decades. It produces medical isotopes. It has been under IAEA safeguards, always. It’s fuel used to be HEU supplied by US. After 1979, it was reconfigured to use 20% LEU, which Argentina supplied. When the fuel was running low, Iran approached IAEA to introduce a supplier.

    Long story short, Iran signed the ‘Tehran Declaration’ with Brazil and Turkey to receive the needed fuel in exchange for over a ton of LEU exported out of Iran.

    Ahmadinejad has stated “sell us the fuel plates, we will stop 20% enrichment”


    I don’t understand how anyone could know this history and claim Iran’s enriching to 20% is a genuine matter of concern for anybody. Could you explain?

  533. James Canning says:

    Condoleezza Rice lies blatantly, in her interview noted below. “Until the eleventh hour, she insists, the White House was scrambling to avoid combat.” What an admission of incompetence beyond belief. If, that is, the statement is true. Perhaps Condoleezza Rice in fact thought there was an effort to avoid war? Perhaps she did not know that some of the warmongering neocons conspiring to set up the war expected to gain fabulous wealth as a result of invasion and destruction of Sunni power structure?

  534. BiBiJon says:


    Thanks for the Pterson link. Here is quote from it:

    For Kelley, formerly with the IAEA, the current Iran report is a “real mish-mash” that includes some “amateurish analysis.”

    Among several technical points, Kelley notes the report’s discussion of Iran’s “exploding bridge-wire detonators,” or EBWs. The IAEA report said it recognizes that “there exist non-nuclear applications, albeit few,” and point to a likely weapons connection for Iran.

    “The Agency is wrong. There are lots of applications for EBWs,” says Kelley. “To be wrong on this point, and then to try to misdirect opinion shows a bias towards their desired outcome…. That is unprofessional.”

  535. James Canning says:


    The British Government will do the American people a very great service if they make clear Britain opposes an illegal and idiotic attack on Iran.

  536. James Canning says:

    In the Times (London) Nov. 1st, Rhys Blakely points out that Condoleezza Rice in effect concedes she allowed the warmongering neocons to put the knowingly false statement in G W Bush’s 2003 State of the Union address: “The British Government has learnt that Saddam Hussein recently sought significant quantities of uranium from Africa.” Dick Chney knew this was false, as did Rice’s chief deputy, Stephen Hadley. The moron in the White House apparently did not know the statement was false.

  537. Reza Esfandiari says:

    Bellicosity towards Iran must be curbed


    The British government must pledge to have no involvement in any military action against Iran, including not allowing Diego Garcia to be used as a launchpad for air strikes.

  538. James Canning says:


    A number of Gulf states have tried to improve relations with Iran from time to time. Enriching to 20% accomplishes just what, for Iran? Sirring up fear in the very rich Gulf states hardly does Iran’s own interests much good.

    The Shah of Iran certainly did not care if he frightened the Gulf states. The Shah, of course, is well-remembered for his serious blunders. Cataloguing his blunders would take thousands of pages.

  539. James Canning says:

    Rhys Blakely interviewed Condoleezza Rice for the Times (London), at Stanford U, regarding her new memoir. “Some of the events she describes are gobsmacking [astonishing]. She reveals, for instance, that sbe only learnt that the Iraqi Army had been disbanded – – a move almost unanimously slammed as confirming the country’s spiral into anarch – – after Colin Powell saw it on television and called to tell her.”

    What a comment on the moron in the White House! His National Security Advisor, and his Secretary of State, were not informed that Jerry Bremer was going to disband the Iraqi army! When it had been agreed, prior to the launch of the illegal invasion, that the army etc would be kept intact.

  540. On the radar: Slavin on steps to keep Iran from the bomb; Albright on the technical details; Joe puts the report in perspective; Concerning, but neither imminent nor inevitable; IAEA report not a game changer; WH relatively quiet; IAEA meeting on the 18th; Lieberman saber rattles; Fewer targets, fewer bombs; Oil markets feel it; and the Loose geeks problem

  541. James Canning says:


    Surely you can see than an Iranian withdrawal from NPT would be disastrous for Iran’s standing. It would invite, if not insist, that Russia and China join in more sanctions.

  542. James Canning says:

    Bret Stephens, writing in the Wall Street Journal Nov. 8th: “And it bears wondering what a nuclear Iran might do with its weapons if faced with a slow-motion revolt on the Syrian model.” Does Stephens think Iran would explode nuclear weapons in Tehran?
    Typical rubbish from neocon-oriented WSJ columnist.

  543. WTF says:

    Scott Peterson on the latest IAEA report

    Iran nuclear report: Why it may not be a game-changer after all

    Prior to the report’s release, speculation mounted in Israel and Washington that new revelations might prompt military strikes to prevent Iran from acquiring a weapon. Instead, experts say, much of the information is years old, inconclusive – and perhaps not entirely real.


  544. Rd. says:

    fyi says:

    “Iran has not yet withdrawn from that bargain but she should; her existence as a unitary and coherent state has been threatened since 1998.”

    given the current hysteria, what are the relevant differences to remain in npt or not?
    Would the western hostility change?

  545. BiBiJon says:

    Thank you Cyrus for Baradei’s take on the alleged studies. As for Amano, as tribute to his last day in office I hope the Cuban delegate will ‘dishonor the dishonor.’


  546. Humanist says:

    It is distressing to realize this post by Leveretts, and similar articles are read or heard only by a tiny number of Western/American population. It should surprise no one if polls show that great majority of people get their political conceptions from the corrupted MSM while only a small percentage is exposed to contrary honest analyses.

    Distressing….. because for a long time the psychopathic warmongers, liars, racists and profiteers, instead of being in jail, are in full control of the affairs of the people.

    Leveretts write “..the new IAEA report is, substantively, a colossal non-event”. For many, especially those who have experienced the brutality of the above mentioned parasites of humanity, the report is a sad event showing how brazenly the officials are planted in decision-making position or how they are bribed to do the dirty work. If Amano had any sense of dignity or honor he should have refused to write the report or should have resigned to inform the public about the behind-the-scene dirty currents .

    To realize why Amano doesn’t have the decency and integrity of El baredei read the following response of Iran to IAEA report (answering 20 key questions) as presented to NAM representatives:


    I think ever-increasingly, the conscientious people of the world are becoming convinced that the Likudnks are blatantly pulling these strings. I believe, they, if not the enemy of humanity, are at least the worst enemy of the Israel. They just don’t understand the direction of history something Abraham Lincoln did astutely.. He is quoted as saying something like “you can fool some forever, you can fool everyone for sometime but you can not fool everyone forever”.

  547. fyi says:

    James Canning says: November 9, 2011 at 2:07 pm

    The Southern Persian Gulf states (excepting Oman) had issues with Iran under the Monarchy, they altered their existing anti-Iran by supporting Iraq in her war against Iran after the Islamic Revolution in Iran.

    They are against Iranian power and short of the destruction of a unified state in Northern Persian Gulf, nothing could ameliorate their fear. Certainly enrichment to 20% would only an excuse for them.

    NPT is abrgain.

    Iran has not yet withdrawn from that bargain but she should; her existence as a unitary and coherent state has been threatened since 1998.

    If US, EU, Russia, China and others wish Iran to remain within NPT – albeit in a nuclear-ready mode – they best open their (diplomatic) coffers and start bribing Iranians to stay within NPT.

    That they are not doing so, that in 2007 – when they had the political cover to do so – they selected to pursue the path of confrontation, and this escalation at IAEA indicates that NPT is of little importance to these states.

    They cannot tolerate the irreversible strategic autonomy of Iran.

    That is the nub.

  548. Cyrus says:

    Just FYI folks I suggest reading what Elbaradei had to say about the “Alleged Studies” which was excoriated for not releasing, with claims that he was “censoring” a “Secret Annex” that proved Iran continued working on nukes. I’ve cut-and-pasted the relevant portions from his book on my blog (apologies to the Leveretts for self-promoting on their blog)
    LINK http://www.iranaffairs.com/iran_affairs/2011/11/those-alleged-studies-or-possible-military-dimensions-in-iran.html

  549. jay says:

    Wilbur says:
    November 9, 2011 at 1:58 pm

    I understand that sometimes, particularly when one is emotionally impacted, one could make statements that later they wish they would have taken back.

    I suggest you really contemplate what you have said, take a deep breath, wipe the slate clean, and write a new and more cogent post – best to forget what you wrote in the last one.

  550. BiBiJon says:

    Of course, these are extremely murky waters and I’m not at all sure who to believe. There is probably a lot of deception taking place on both sides. But what seems to me extraordinary is the reluctance of journalists – especially in the US mainstream – to acknowledge the uncertainties and their willingness to accept what, as far as Iran is concerned, are the most incriminating interpretations.

    from http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2011/nov/09/us-media-iran-scare-stories?newsfeed=true

  551. WTF says:

    **I left out a word

    Last sentence should read:

    “The facts surrounding the 2009 election *controversy* point much more towards “foreign conspiracy”, than they do to IRG election fraud.

  552. WTF says:

    Wilbur says:
    November 9, 2011 at 1:58 pm

    In both cases the only valid information they allow or verify is information they believe in.

    Are you recommending that they verify information that they deem bullshit? And what do you even mean by “allow”?

    The burden of proof does fall on the accuser, not only in the Iranian Government’s eyes, but in any objective observer’s eyes as well. There has been shitloads of independent review of the “facts” regarding Iran’s nuclear file. The only thing missing is the background on the “evidence” provided by “member states”, which if made available would almost certainly help, not hurt, Iran’s claims of bullshit. What and how exactly has Iran obstructed? We do agree that one party is unwilling to have an honest debate on the subject, but something tells me that we don’t agree on which party.

    Regarding the elections, the facts have been verified and independently reviewed. The people still clamoring about a rigged election, are either ill-informed or are biased (most are both). The facts surrounding the 2009 election point much more towards “foreign conspiracy”, than they do to IRG election fraud.

  553. James Canning says:

    William Hague in Nov. 9th statement to British Parliament: “We want a negotiated solution and have extended the hand of reconciliation to Iran time and time again.”

  554. James Canning says:


    Isn’t a primary object of the NPT to prevent nuclear proliferation?

  555. James Canning says:


    Are you in effect saying you do not approve of Iran’s offer to cease production of 20% U? The problems Iran has in its relations with Gulf countries are greatly exacerbated by enriching U to 20%.

  556. James Canning says:


    Given that Israel tries to assassinate Iranian scientists identified by the IAEA, are you able to comprehend this assassination campaign inhibits Iranian “cooperation” that you seem to seek?

  557. fyi says:

    Wilbur says: November 9, 2011 at 1:58 pm

    IAEA is not a disarmament agency; it cannot legally exceed its mandate.

    It now has done so in a very public way.

    Whether Iran puruses a nuclear bomb or not is irrelevant to NPT.

    In casse of the Iranian elections in 2009; 20% of votes were recounted with no substantial differences in the final outcome.

    All of this are, of course, quite ancilary; the “Regime” in Iran has achieved – through its own efforts as well as miscalculations of others – the status of a state with strategic autonomy.

    That cannot be reversed.

  558. James Canning says:


    Do you approve of Obama’s failure to respond to Iran’s recent offer to cease production of 20% U?

  559. James Canning says:


    Thanks for link to Philip Giraldi being interviewed on RussiaToday. Giraldi: “I would be very sceptical” about relying on IAEA report that itself relies on intel provided by US and Israel.

    The RussiaToday interviewer did well to remind the viewing audience of the false intel that set up the war with Iraq. And we know the false intel that set up the Iraq War was supplied by warmongering neocons in the Pentagon’s Office of Special Plans. Knowingly supplied, to set up illegal war.

  560. Wilbur says:

    To all,

    For those who have not reviewed the IAEA report here it is:


    While much of the information is old it is the first time it was released. What is important to note is that despite the dispute over the validity of the data it does paint a picture consistent with the regimes all to common obstruction. Interestingly this pattern is also consistent with regime’s stance on the elections. In both cases the only valid information they allow or verify is information they believe in. All other information is a lie or some foreign conspiracy. In short the burden of proof in Iran’s eyes is everyone else’s and most importantly doing so while clearly obstructing any kind of independent/review of the facts. Sort of hard to get to the bottom of anything when one party is clearly unwilling to participate in a open and transparent debate on the subjects.


  561. James Canning says:


    I of course very much agree with you any Israeli or American attack on Iran, based on the IAEA report etc., clearly would be illegal under international law.

    And what a load of rubbish, that it is “anti-Semitic” to point out that Israel refuses to sign the NPT. There is a “Holocaust” industry, and an “antiSemitism” industry; both are employed to dupe the ignorant American public and to skew the debate.

  562. James Canning says:


    A US abstention would only be possible if the nine votes in favor were not available (for UN admission of Palestine).

  563. James Canning says:


    I think the Russian concern about any additional UNSC sanctions against Iran is well-founded.

    You might do well to keep in mind that Russia opposes any Iranian nuclear weapons programme.

  564. James Canning says:


    Isn’t the French plan (for upgrading the standing of Palestine in the General Assembly) the only way forward at this time?

  565. James Canning says:


    Are you asking if the American people profit from the dispute? Or that they profit from its continuation? Clearly, Netanyahu (whom Sarkozy calls a “liar”) benefits from the deflection of attention from his continuing insane “Greater Israel” programme. The interests of American politicians often conflict with the national interest, but this fact is largely concealed from the ignorant American public.

  566. James Canning says:


    US hoping there will be no vote (in UNSC for admission of Palestine). Never any possibility the application would be approved.

  567. James Canning says:

    Great piece. I of course continue to find it very interesting that the Obama administration has not responded to Iran’s offer to cease production of 20% U.
    And American newspapers for the most part have not even let their readers know such an offer has been made.

  568. Karl says:

    Eric Brill – I think US fear(ed) they would be the only one using the veto. Now when theres no chance of 9 votes pro-palestinian state US could choose between no or abstain, to ease of even more tensions, wouldnt they just abstain? (even if they really mean no).

    Veto(worst) > No(worse) > Abstain(ok)

  569. Cyrus_2 says:

    @ Anon: thanks for the article.
    I added it to my favorites.

    I was quite baffled to read Amano visited the White House just 12 days before the release of the report.
    El-Baradei would have been forced to resign if he had visited Tehran a few days before the release of a report favorable to Iran.

  570. Rd. says:

    From pbs newshour with David albright…


    Another, in fact, even more important component is making the enriched
    uranium, the weapon-grade uranium. And that’s not discussed very much
    in this report at all. But the weaponization program prior to 2004 was
    quite robust and moving forward.


    No, their enrichment program isn’t working very well. And the report
    today shows they continue to have problems. They’re more slowly deploying
    the advanced centrifuges than Iran had intended. So, the long pole in the tent,
    the ability to make weapon-grade uranium, is not going so well in Iran.


    So Mr albright is suggesting we will continue to use this excuse, they are
    making the bomb, but they have problem… so we can keep dragging this
    issue. question is, is US gaining anything?

  571. Karl,

    A US abstention would be the same as a “no” vote. Presumably the US government feels it’s important to vote “no” rather than abstain. As I understand it most recently, if Germany and Bosnia abstain rather than vote “no,” there will be only one actual “no” vote, cast by the US.

    Regardless of how the US votes, a majority of the Security Council members (8 of the 15) reportedly plan to vote “yes.” Majority or not, that won’t be enough to even put the question to the General Assembly,

  572. Karl says:

    brill> Couldnt US just abstain too?

  573. Jon,

    To me, if Palestine is denied admission in the UN, the most outrageous aspect will be that that occurred upon a “no” vote of just the US,and maybe Germany and Bosnia. Worse yet, the latter 2 may just abstain, which means just one affirmative “no” vote will have prevented every country in the world (represented in the General Assembly) from even being allowed to express their preference.

  574. WTF says:

    It is not difficult to imagine how Republican presidential candidates will strive to “out-hawk” one another—and, especially, President Obama—during their next debate this coming Saturday

    Would be relevant to note that the reactionary, Establishment candidates will all spew some bullshit about how we need to take strong action to prevent “the Mad Mullahs from getting their bomb, so they don’t wipe Israel off of the map”, and then Ron Paul will mildly point out that all of the others on the stage with him are idiots.

  575. Karl says:

    While Russia backstabbed Iran on S-300 you got to be somehwat grateful that Russia is not tagging along on more politically motivated sanctions against Iran. Enough is enough:

    “Any additional sanctions against Iran will be seen in the international community as an instrument for regime change in Iran. That approach is unacceptable to us, and the Russian side does not intend to consider such proposals,”

  576. Anon says:

    Following a news conference in Cannes last week, Sarkozy said “I cannot bear” Netanyahu, adding that he was “a liar.”

    “You’re fed up, but I have to deal with him every day,” Obama responded. The conversation was captured on microphones monitored by the press; the French media held back the news for several days before it was reported by a French photo agency Tuesday.

    The question is why does Obama deal with Bibi _every_ day????????????????

  577. WTF says:

    …Even if every single point in the IAEA’s report were absolutely, 100 percent true, it would mean that Iran is working systematically to master the skills it would need to fabricate nuclear weapons at some hypothetical point down the road, should it ever decide to do so.

    …Iranian efforts to develop a “nuclear weapons capability”, as described by Baradei, may make American and Israeli elites uncomfortable. But it is not a violation of the NPT or any other legal obligation that the Islamic Republic has undertaken. While the NPT prohibits non-nuclear-weapon states from building atomic bombs, developing a nuclear weapons capability is, in Baradei’s words, “kosher” under the NPT, see here. It is certainly not a justification—strategically, legally, or morally—for armed aggression against Iran.

    I point this out when arguing the topic with people who think they are informed. Most anytime I have pointed out the hypocrisy of Israeli claims about Iranian “desires” for nuclear weapons, I am rebutted with some form of “but Israel is not a signatory of the NPT, so their arsenal is not illegal you antisemitic piece of shit”. I then have to be the asshole to point out the inconvenient fact that Iran acquiring knowledge to be able to build nukes should they ever choose to is not illegal either, and that this is as far as the questionable “evidence” has ever pointed to an Iranian weapons program. However, an Israeli or US attack on Iran on the pretext of their nuclear program would be illegal, which further underscores the hypocrisy of Israeli supporters arguing Iran’s nuclear program on legal grounds.

  578. Humanist says:

    Watch Phillip Giraldi’s take on IAEA report as shown on RT:


  579. Anon says:


    I see you are not (yet!) banned from armscontrolwonk.com — how about you point out to Andy there the statement by Pierre Goldschmidt?


    “…the Department of Safeguards doesn’t have the legal authority it needs to fulfill its mandate and to provide the assurances the international community is expecting from its verification activities. ”

  580. Anon says:

    Pierre Goldschmidt at Carnegie says:


    “…the Department of Safeguards doesn’t have the legal authority it needs to fulfill its mandate and to provide the assurances the international community is expecting from its verification activities. ”

    Well, that’s really too bad but this was done by design.

    Many of us have been trying to point this out to the “international community”: IAEA does not have the legal authority to undertake intrusive inspections in Iran as Iran has not ratified the Additional Protocol (AP).

    Can someone post that on armscontrolwonk.com ? My IP has been blocked!

  581. Rehmat says:

    YES – as the previous four ‘crippling sanctions’ have backfired. The new IAEA report is nothing but a piece of crap written by Obama’s Israel-First writers to demonize Islamic Republic – hoping China and Russia will get fooled as they did by Zionist lies at the UNSC about Qaddafi early this year.

    Privately, Israel-Firster, French Sarkozy believes Israeli prime minister Benji Netanyahu is a LIAR and Ben-Obama called Benji “a pain in the neck” ….

    ADL slams Obama and Sarkozy for insulting Bibi

  582. Anon says:

    The Center for Arms Control and Non-proliferation in DC gets it exactly right on the IAEA’s report on Iran:

    “It is clear from the IAEA’s report that these activities took place under a highly structured nuclear program. Iran’s major nuclear effort, identified as the AMAD plan,was stopped “rather abruptly” by Tehran in late 2003, but some staff may have “remained in place to record and document the achievements of their respective projects.”

    Unfortunately, more recent activities receive a far lower level of clarity from the IAEA. According to the report, there are, “indications that some activities relevant to the development of a nuclear explosive device continued after 2003, and that some may still be ongoing,” but “the Agency’s ability to construct an equally good understanding of activities in Iran after the end of 2003 is reduced, due to the more limited information available to the Agency.”



    Also see the view of the US Director of National Intelligence from 2011:


    “Although the content of the new NIE is classified, Clapper confirmed in senate questioning that he has a “high level of confidence” that Iran “has not made a decision as of this point to restart its nuclear weapons program”. [8]

    This jibes with the Intelligence community’s 2007 NIE, the unclassified version of which publicly stated that Iran wrapped up its nuclear weapons program in 2003. Recent State Department cables provided by WikiLeaks back this up – for instance State Department officials confirmed that some rehashed IAEA reports of suspicious Iranian activities in 2004 were “consistent with the 2003 weaponization halt assessment, since some activities were wrapping up in 2004”. [9]

    To be clear, what the NIE and the State Department cables refer to as Iran’s “nuclear weapons program” (or “weaponization”) pre-2003 was some possible – but disputed – evidence of research by Iranian scientists having to do building and potentially delivering a bomb, not a full-blown actual bomb factory.

    Mohamed ElBaradei, the Nobel Peace Prize recipient who spent more than a decade as the director of the IAEA, recently told investigative journalist Seymour Hersh that he had not “seen a shred of evidence that Iran has been weaponizing, in terms of building nuclear-weapons facilities and using enriched materials … I don’t believe Iran is a clear and present danger. All I see is the hype about the threat posed by Iran.” [10]

    Indeed, every year, the IAEA has confirmed that Iran has complied with its nuclear materials’ accountancy. There has never been any diversion of nuclear material into any alleged weapons program.

  583. BiBiJon says:

    Fareed Zakaria also likes Fiorangela’s favorite, a wholesome plate of Fesenjoon

    “as I saw during a brief visit to Tehran last week” …..

    “Iran is a country of 80 million people, educated and dynamic. It sits astride a crucial part of the world. It cannot be sanctioned and pressed down forever. It is the last great civilization to sit outside the global order. We need a strategy that combines pressure with a path to bring Iran in from the cold.”


  584. BiBiJon says:

    Internally Dissing the Intelligence Agencies (Externally)
    Office of Special Plans (under Douglas Feith) = IAEA (under Amano)

    Reading Cyrus Safdari wrote in his blog today:

    “the ultimate significance of this recent IAEA report is not really in what it has to say about Iran’s nuclear program (not much new there, actually, despite the hype.) Rather the report, and all the spin placed on it claiming that it supposedly shows that Iran has a continuing nuclear weapons program, is actually a direct attack on the US intelligence community because they’ve been standing in the way of “manufacturing consent” for a war on Iran.”

    Seeing as there is universal consensus that the ‘information’ provided to IAEA is by and large from the US and Israel, (notwithstanding the chaff Amano throws up with “10 member countries”) then here’s a thought:

    While James Clapper may assert with “high confidence” that there continues to be to active weaponization program in Iran, and indeed there’s not even an Iranian ‘decision’ to weaponize, that ‘information’ which did not make it through assessment rigors of NIE, finds a receptive ear outside the chain of command, indeed outside the chain of US sovereignty.

    Perhaps there is way too much talk about internal divisions plaguing Iranian establishment, and too little discussion of disorderly conduct nearer home.

  585. Jon says:

    cyrus_2, yes the article was honest and atleast more sober than the usual warmongering articles. People are hysteric, they cant reason, they just think “oh Iran is going to this or that, bomb them now”. Thanks the american/israeli warmongering which is nothing but racism.

    I liked one comment on the article site:

    “Hmm. I wonder why Tehran wants to build a nuclear bomb so badly (assuming that is even true)….

    …It’s not like there’s a warmongering country nearby which holds a large stockpile of (secret) nuclear bombs; which refuses to sign up to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty; which only last week showcased their willingness to go to war by firing of a missile missile; and which is supported by foreign allies who have invaded at least two countries in the region in the past decade.

    To be honest, I’m more surprised by the Establishment’s reaction to the (alleged) fact that Iran wants to build a nuclear bomb than the news of them building a bomb itself.

  586. Bussed-in Basiji says:

    A couple nights ago in Tehran there was a very loud burst of thunder at around 4 am, VERY LOUD, not the usual sound of thunder. It was so loud that it sounded like aerial bombing. I woke up and thanked God that the Americans/Israelis had attacked and that we could finally go to war with them. Then I looked out the window and saw that it had just been thunder during a heavy snow storm.

    During the day I spoke about this with friends and they all had had the same reaction at night as I had.

  587. Cyrus_2 says:

    For a newspaper as The Guardian, this a pretty even-handed account of the latest IAEA-report: http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/julian-borger-global-security-blog/2011/nov/09/iaea-nuclear-iran-israel1

  588. Cyrus_2 says:

    Good news for Iran: http://www.guardian.co.uk/business/blog/2011/nov/09/greece-prime-minister-italy-berlusconi-resigns

    The EU and IMF may be able to save tiny Greece from bankruptcy, but Italy’s economy is too big to rescue.
    With the Eurozone on the verge of collapse, the warmongers in the US and Israel will have a very hard to time to press other countries for more sanctions.

  589. Dan Cooper says:

    Off topic

    British press is now an official Israeli propaganda outlet.

    This Is How Israel Runs The British Press

    please click on this link:


    By Gilad Atzmon

    The following is a glimpse into the Israeli Hasbara’s/Mossad’s/Sayanim’s operation in the UK.

    It explains how Israel and its agents manage to dominate news coverage in Britain and beyond.

    It seems from the following leaked email as if BICOM (British Israel Communication & research Centre) runs the News desk for the BBC, Sky and the FT.

    I guess that last week the Guardian also joined the party. It is now an offical Israeli propaganda outlet.

    Shockingly enough, not a single British paper was brave enough to report the story or publish the leaked email.

    Surely they know who their masters are. The message is pretty clear. British press is not trustworthy. It is as Zionised as our political system.

  590. Jon says:

    Bosnia will vote no or abstain, according to news, israel persuaded the serbs.

  591. Castellio says:

    The nuclear issue remains a handy handle to manipulate the ignorant and the deceitful, but it’s not the central issue. The central issue is that the aim of the governments of Israel and the US is the on-going degradation of the Iranian economy, and the dissolution of the Iranian state into squabbling parts.

    Its in that context of war aims, itself a function of the integrated military economy and culture of both the US and Israel, that war is inevitable.

    The sooner Iran can become a full member of the SCO, and the sooner that organization is reorganized into a defensive military alliance, the better. I’m not saying its going to happen, I am saying I wish it were happening.

  592. A mismatch between headline and body in a New York Times article? Now there’s a first.

    The headline:

    “Palestinian Bid for U.N. Membership Faces Near-Certain Defeat”

    The body:

    “Russia, China, Lebanon, India, Brazil and South Africa have voiced outright support. Nigeria and Gabon, though hedging publicly, were expected to vote in favor.

    The United States has been firmly opposed, and Germany may also vote against membership. Britain, France and Colombia said in a closed membership meeting last week that they would abstain, diplomats said. That left Portugal and Bosnia. Portugal was expected to go along with its European partners, while the tripartite presidency of Bosnia was in disagreement.”

    Nine votes are required to pass. The Times’ count shows 8 likely “yes” votes, 1 certain “no” vote (US), 1 “maybe no” votes (Germany), 4 abstentions (Britain, France, Portugal, Colombia), and 1 undecided (Bosnia).

    The Palestinian bid may (or may not) fail, but “near-certain defeat” is not a conclusion one can fairly draw from this vote count.

  593. baz says:


    can you please start making clear to people that

    a) once a country masters the fuel cycle for energy production, they have simultaneously and perhaps unintentionally reached “nuclear weapons capability”

    b) while Iran may not have completely reached this level yet, several countries have already reached “nuclear weapons capability” (under the definition above) but have never once been inspected or sanctioned despite having admitted to enriching weapons grade uranium; Something Iran has never done. These countries are Brazil, Argentina, Japan, Korea, S. Africa and Australia as far as I know

  594. baz says:

    THis is a huge setback for the IAEA. Thanks to Amano, they have just lost all credibility; the credibility El baredei worked so hard to maintain after years of torment by the US and ISrael in order to keep the IAEA focused on its mandate

    This lack of credibility will now make it much easier for rogue states to secretly built nukes.

    Humanity has just taken a big and risky step in the wrong direction thanks to our reckless and incompetent government

  595. Unknown Unknowns says:

    Arnold says, “Until, like with Japan and Brazil, the West learns to be satisfied with a lack of nuclear weapons, rather than pressing beyond that and beyond the law to a lack of weapons capability, there is no chance of resolution.”

    That is true, but I would have framed it thus: Until Uncle Weasel stops acting like laws apply to everyone except itself, people in the real world (i.e., people, not weasels) will just hold him in contempt every time it says that so-and-so is acting illegally, *even if said statement were true*. The fact that you can tell Uncle Weasel is lying by seeing if his lips are moving just compounds the credibility problem.

    The magnitude of the arrogance of the Axis of Weasels is truly staggering. They are so puffed up with illusions of grandeur that I shrink in fear and cover my head and face with my arms every time Uncle Weasel walks past a shrub or a cactus plant, lest a wind blows and a thorn makes contact with his delicate red-neck skin and he blows up and gets his shit all over me. Pity the undertaker who has to deal with the aftermath of this abortion on legs once the shit hits the proverbial fan.

  596. Interested says:

    The US and EU economies simply do not have have the strength for dealing with increased tensions and further confrontation with Iran will simply make Iran more popular (and the US unpopular) among Arabs at a time of great change in the Arab world.

  597. Arnold Evans says:

    Here’s one that may or may not make it into armscontrolwonk


    We could have offered Iran the chance to come clean on all its nuclear activities (ie. an amnesty), recognized them for what they were – a rational response to the now non-existent threat from Iraq – and made a deal whereby Iran ratifies the AP to provide credible assurance that Iran will not secretly keep pursuing a weapons capability into the future.

    This thing about “weapons capability”, or even “secret weapons capability” is very curious.

    Japan and Brazil openly have pursued and achieved weapons capability, as is their right under the NPT and also Iran’s.

    The Western idea that Israel has a sacred monopoly on nuclear capability in its region certainly has no support in any relevant document or treaty and the insistence of the Western nuclear policy community on distorting the agencies and laws to implement this double standard will only lead to further confrontation.

    Iran is really better off waiting for the US to lose either the desire or ability to prevent it from achieving the capabilities Japan and Brazil have achieved than submitting to these Western Israel-inspired demands and committing future generations of Iranian leaders to them.

    Until, like with Japan and Brazil, the West learns to be satisfied with a lack of nuclear weapons, rather than pressing beyond that and beyond the law to a lack of weapons capability, there is no chance of resolution.

  598. Arnold Evans says:

    I left a response to a comment over at Juan Cole’s place and it seems that it did not make it past Cole’s moderation. I’ll leave it here.

    Commenter: I recall Saddam Hussein and Qaddafi signed the NPT and violated it anyway.

    Arnold Evans: You recall wrong. Osirak was a publicly known reactor of a type with nearly no weapons potential. Saddam Hussein never diverted fissile material to a weapons program, and all of the uranium in Iraq was exactly where Iraq had told the IAEA it was all along.

    Gaddafi also never diverted fissile material to weapons. Neither Iraq, Libya or Iran ever were as close to making a weapon or could make them as quickly and easily as Japan, Brazil, Germany or Canada could today.

    Simply put, the United States is committed to a different standard for access to nuclear technology for countries that could break Israel’s regional nuclear monopoly.

    You, like most casually informed Westerners, have been subject to a decades-long campaign of lies told on Israel’s behalf.

    If Brazil, Japan or Canada were located where Libya, Iran or Iraq is, with the same exact nuclear policies & programs, Barack Obama would present any of them to you as the world’s greatest threat to humanity. And he’d lie to you about why.

    Democrat or Republican, the US commitment to Israel requires the US political system to engage in this deception.

  599. fyi says:

    There is a silver lining in this for Iran; IAEA has nothing else left with bwhich to smear Iran – having in the process further politicized its Secretariat by exceeding its mandate.

    Short term propaganda bought at a very high price indeed.

  600. Unknown Unknowns says:

    God bless you, Leveretts, for being the only voice of sanity out there in Beltwayistan.

    You forgot to mention that if Team Weasel fails to manufacture the consent of its Nippoese Chump, then it will simply manufacture (another?) Tsunami off the Nippon coast by way of a tiny subaquatic nuclear explosion in order to remind slanteye who’s Boss.