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Iran War Weekly - May 5, 2013

Iran War Weekly

May 5, 2013

 

Hello All – It is too soon to tell whether Israel’s weekend bombing of Syria will irrevocably change the course of the war and engulf the region in death and fire.  Israel has intimated that further attacks are on the way, and the Obama administration has stated that US strikes against Syria’s air defenses and air fields are under discussion.  Syria (via the Arab League) seems about to take the issue to the UN Security Council, where we can expect the United States to defend Israel by blocking discussion.  What will Syria then do after further Israeli aggression?

 

Iran War Weekly - April 21, 2013

Iran War Weekly

April 21, 2013

 

Hello All -- Following on the failure of the talks in Kazakhstan about Iran’s nuclear program, the United States and its allies renewed their non-diplomatic offensive against Iran this week.  Secretary of Defense Hagel was in the Middle East, most especially in Israel, to push a $10 billion program introducing more advanced offensive weapons into the Israel, Saudi, and UAE arsenals.  Like the trips of President Obama and Secretary of State Kerry made two weeks earlier, Hagel’s mission is both to reassure Israel and other regional allies that the United States still considers “all options on the table,” while at the same time  pressuring Israel to defer military action against Iran and to give sanctions and negotiations more time.

 

Iran War Weekly - April 11, 2013

Iran War Weekly

April 11, 2013

 

Hello All – As expected, last week’s negotiations in Kazakhstan between the P5+1 and Iran about the latter’s nuclear program ended in failure.  While leaders of the two sides have agreed to keep talking, no next meeting has been scheduled, and it is unlikely that there will be one until the conclusion of Iran’s presidential election, which will take place in June.

 

Libyan Door to Syrian Door to Iran

"Our intelligence community does assess with varying degrees of confidence that the Syrian regime has used chemical weapons on a small scale in Syria, specifically the chemical agent sarin."

I do assess with varying degrees of horror (some of the varying degrees rather high even) that a lot of people are going to die.  And how dare they die from chemical weapons when they should be dying from hellfire missiles and cluster bombs and napalm and depleted uranium and white phosphorous.  We have a responsibility to protect these people from dying of the wrong type of weapon and in too small numbers.

I'm in Dallas protesting the rehabilitation of our last criminal president because of the precedents he set for our current criminal president.  So, precedents are on my mind.  One precedent for an illegal humanitarian NATO war on Syria is, of course, the illegal humanitarian war on Libya two years ago.  And the pair of precedents (Libya and Syria) will put the target of the neocon/neoliberal cooperative war project squarely on Iran.

Syria will suffer, of course.  There will be no more an example of a humanitarian war that actually benefitted humanity after Syria than before.  The precedent will not be one of having accomplished something, but of having gotten away with something.

For some truly illuminating background on what was done to Libya, and some relevant discussion of what awaits Syria (if we don't prevent it), I recommend Francis Boyle's new book, Destroying Libya and World Order. 

Boyle served as a lawyer for the government of Libya repeatedly, over a period of decades, more than once successfully preventing a military assault by the United States and the United Kingdom.  Boyle details the aggression toward Libya of the Reagan administration: the lies and false accusations, the sanctions, the provocations, the assassination attempts, the infiltration, the blatant disregard for international law.

Boyle's history brings us up to and through the 2011 assault, and traces its precedents to a very similar war over a decade earlier in Bosnia.  Boyle finds the unconstitutional and illegal assault on Libya a clear impeachable offense for President Obama.  And why would we think otherwise?  Only because we let Clinton and Bush get away with everything they got away with.  It would seem unfair now to impeach Obama for a crime his predecessors committed as well.

But past, as well as current, presidents can be impeached, censured, prosecuted, and/or publicly shamed.  Five of them came to Dallas today; there shouldn't be any trouble finding them.  And the criminal attack on Libya can be treated as the crime it was.  The excuse of protection was used to quite openly pursue the overthrow of a nation's government, bombing large numbers of civilians in the process, while arming brutal thugs and creating predictable blowback in neighboring nations as well.

In contrast, in Bahrain, nonviolent pro-democracy activists are left to their own devices as a U.S.-backed dictatorship jails, tortures, and murders them.

In Syria, the United States has worked against peace and for violence.  That violence is not a justification for further and heightened violence.  And every member of an intelligence "community" that announces that Syria might possibly have used a chemical weapon should be doing community service for the people of Fallujah and Basra and Baghdad, not prodding the world's only stupor power into another genocide.

 

Targeting Iran

 

Targeting Iran

 

by Stephen Lendman

 

Hostile US/Israeli rhetoric is longstanding. Obama and Netanyahu consider Iran an existential threat. Claiming it turns truth on its head.

 

Reaping the Whirlwind: A Violent Act Again in a Violent Nation

 

By Dave Lindorff


I ran the Boston Marathon back in 1968, and, my feet covered with blisters inside my Keds sneakers, dragged across the finish line to meet my waiting uncle at a time of about 3 hours and 40 minutes. It was close enough to the time that the current bombing happened in this year’s race -- about four hours from the starting gun -- that had I been running it this year, I might still been near enough to the finish line to have heard the blasts.

Iranian Terrorist Group Opens Office a Block from White House, Serves Cake and Hopes for War

From Radio Free Europe:

Until not long ago the Mujahedin-e Khalq Organization (MKO) was on the list of the U.S. State Department's terrorist organizations. On April 11, that seemed like a distant memory as the group celebrated the opening of its Washington office just a block away from the White House, with tea and Iranian snacks.

The opening of the office of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), an umbrella group dominated by the MKO (aka the People's Mujahedin of Iran), was attended by several former U.S. officials, NCRI members, and their legal team, who described it as a "great day" for the Iranian people, for democracy in Iran, and for the values the United States cherishes. ...

Iran Nukes could be a Stabilizing Counterbalance to Israeli Arsenal

 

TCBH! founder Dave Lindorff On Iran: "The Iranians have enough money to buy a bomb if they wanted one, on the black market, so I think all of this has been hugely overblown in US propaganda, and Israeli propaganda."


Veterans for Peace: Don't Iraq Iran or Any Other Nation

Veterans for Peace has just released the following statement:

With the 10-year anniversary of the invasion of Iraq behind us, the task lies before us of preventing the next one.

The Iraq war, like all wars, was launched on the basis of false answers to false questions. We are now being told to ask whether Iran or Syria has weapons, as though possession of weapons were grounds for bombing a nation, and as if we've learned nothing.

Iranian Nuclear Talks

 

Iranian Nuclear Talks

 

by Stephen Lendman

 

On April 5, so-called P5+1 talks began. They picked up where previous ones left off. Countries involved include America, Britain, China, Russia, France and Germany. Almaty, Kazahhstan played host. It did so for the second time.

 

Iran participates in good faith. Saeed Jalili heads its negotiating delegation. EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton represents P5+1 countries.

Crashing the 2-Party System: The Way Forward is a Single-Issue Social Security Defense Party

 

By Dave Lindorff


The history of third parties in America is pretty dismal. The system is rigged against them, for one thing. But equally problematic is the lack of focus that leads to infighting and splits whenever a third party is created.


Iran War Weekly - April 2, 2013

Iran War Weekly

April 2, 2013

 

Hello All – Following a “successful” renewal of negotiations in February, and an ambiguous round of technical talks in March, Iran and the P5+1 (the five permanent members of the UN Security Council, plus Germany) are set to meet again in Kazakhstan at the end of this week.  What are the prospects for progress in resolving disputes about Iran’s nuclear program and (not incidentally) reducing the prospects for war?

 

The Future's So Much More Fun than the Past: How to Avoid the Bummer Myth

 

By John Grant


“The elite always has a Plan B, while people have no escape.”
            - Ahmad Saadawi


Iran War Weekly - March 25, 2013

Iran War Weekly

March 25, 2013

 

Hello All – Last week’s “technical talks” between Iran and the P5+1 (the five permanent members of the UN Security Council plus Germany) deflated the hopes generated by the meeting of “higher level” negotiators in Kazakhstan in February, suggesting that little can be expected by the next round of talks scheduled, again in Kazakhstan, on April 5 and 6.

 

Fund My Peace Mission to Iran

I have the opportunity to travel to Iran in April with some of the best peace activists in the United States on a mission of peace.  We will report on everything we are able to do and learn.  I can only go if you can help me fund the trip.  Please chip in anything you can here http://davidswanson.org/donate 

NB: We are waiting for our visas.  If the visas do not come through, funds you've donated will be used when the trip can be rescheduled or will be put to other good use in the cause of peace.

Thank you! --David Swanson

Iran War Weekly - March 18, 2013

Iran War Weekly

March 18, 2013

 

Hello All – As readers may/will recall, we are between negotiating sessions about Iran’s nuclear program.  After an eight-month hiatus, restarting negotiations between the P5+1 (the five permanent members of the UN Security Council) and Iran was significant.  Even more significant, and also surprising, was that the negotiations in Kazakhstan in February generated cautious optimism among diplomats, and a second round of negotiations is now scheduled  for early April, again in Kazakhstan.

 

Iran War Weekly - March 12, 2013

Iran War Weekly

March 12, 2013

 

True, He’s the First Black President But Obama’s the Worst President Ever

 

By Ron Ridenour


Yes, I mean it: the worst ever!


We’ve had James Monroe and his doctrine of supremacy over Latin America. We’ve had Theodore Roosevelt and his invasion of Cuba; Nixon, Reagan, Bush-Bush and their mass murder, and all the war crimes and genocide committed by most presidents. Yes, but we never had a black man sit on the white throne of imperialism committing war crimes.


Iran War Weekly - March 5, 2013

Iran War Weekly

March 5, 2013

 

Nuclear Roulette Update

 

Nuclear Roulette Update

 

by Stephen Lendman

 

Multiple P5 + 1 talks were held. Almaty, Kazakstan ones are the latest. Nothing gets accomplished. Washington obstructionism prevents it. Israel does so covertly.

 

Iran War Weekly - February 26, 2013

Iran War Weekly

February 26, 2013

 

Hello All – After a six-month delay, representatives Iran and the “P5+1” met in Kazakhstan today to renew negotiations about Iran’s nuclear program.  Early news reports say that “the West” offered Iran a very modest lifting of sanctions if Iran would take steps to halt or alter significant parts of its nuclear program.  Iran is expected to make its reply tomorrow, during a second day of talks.  As indicated in pre-meeting analyses linked below, Iran is expected to reject the West’s proposal as trivial and insincere, wanting instead for the P5+1 to recognize Iran’s rights to enrich uranium under the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and to lay out an offer that would quickly remove all the economic sanctions against it.

 

IAEA Report Confirms Iran's Peaceful Nuclear Program

 

IAEA Report Confirms Iran's Peaceful Nuclear Program

 

by Stephen Lendman

 

It's no surprise. It's been that way for years. Iran's legally entitled to enrich uranium. Dozens of other countries do the same thing. 

 

Tehran alone is criticized. Managed news misinformation begets more of it. Washington, Israel, and European partner collaborators repeat it ad nauseam.

Further Evidence John Brennan Unfit to Lead CIA

Brennan’s Loose Talk on Iran Nukes

February 22, 2013

The Senate Intelligence Committee’s hearing on John Brennan to head the CIA focused on lethal drones, but Brennan’s loose talk lumping Iran with North Korea as nuclear threats could be even more worrisome, recalling Iraq WMD exaggerations, as Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity warn Sen. Dianne Feinstein.

-----------------------------------

February 22, 2013

MEMORANDUM FOR: Senator Dianne Feinstein, Chair, Senate Select Committee on Intelligence

FROM: Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity

SUBJECT: Due Diligence on John Brennan

Bulgarian Revelations Explode Hezbollah Bombing “Hypothesis”

By Gareth Porter, IPS

WASHINGTON, Feb 18 2013 (IPS) - When European Union foreign ministers discuss a proposal to designate Hezbollah as a terrorist organisation, Bulgaria’s Foreign Minister Nikolay Mladenov will present his government’s case for linking two suspects in the Jul. 18, 2012 bombing of an Israeli tourist bus to Hezbollah.

Iran War Weekly - February 18, 2013

Iran War Weekly

February 18, 2013

 

Hello All – Prospects for renewed negotiations on Iran’s nuclear program – now set for February 26th in Kazakhstan – diminished this week, as the United States revealed its negotiating “carrot”: to roll back new economic sanctions which they placed on Iran last week!  “You are pointing the gun at Iran and say either negotiate or we will shoot,” Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei said of the United States. “But you should know that pressure and negotiations are not compatible and our nation will not be intimidated by these threats.”

 

Upcoming Iranian Nuclear Talks

 

Upcoming Iranian Nuclear Talks

 

by Stephen Lendman

 

Multiple previous P5+1 talks were held. America manipulated them to fail. So did Israel covertly. Western nations were pressured to go along.

 

On February 26, new talks will be held in Almaty, Kazahhstan. Expect no more this time than earlier. 

 

Beating Up on Iran Continues

 

Beating Up on Iran Continues

 

by Stephen Lendman

 

It's continued for decades. Iran's a prime target of choice. Washington deplores independent governments. 

 

It wants pro-Western ones replacing them. It doesn't care if they're democratic, despotic or anything in between. Subservience to Washington alone matters.

 

Escalating Pressure on Iran

 

Escalating Pressure on Iran

 

by Stephen Lendman

 

Secretary of State John Kerry's clear where he stands. He laid down markers. He demands Iran comply with Washington's demands. Left unsaid is what follows otherwise.

 

On February 26, nuclear talks will resume. P5+1 countries (Washington, Britain, Germany, China and Russia) will meet Iranian negotiators. They'll do so in Almaty, Kazakhstan.

Iran War Weekly - February 11, 2013

Iran War Weekly

February 11, 2013

 

Hello All – After a long slumber, diplomacy about Iran’s nuclear program has awakened.  Yet none of the factors that stymied agreement in the past has significantly changed.  The United States still couples diplomacy with its “all options are on the table” bravado, a stance that precludes a climate conducive to negotiations.  And the United States still refuses to recognize Iran’s right to enrich uranium under the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty or to consider lifting or suspending economic sanctions in exchange for concessions by Iran.  Moreover, the window for negotiations, which was closed during the US election campaign, will soon close again, perhaps as soon as March, as Iran prepares for its own presidential election.

 

Keeping Americans Safe: Freedom of Information Takes Another Hit in the United States

 

By Dave Lindorff


The US government doesn't like Iran. I get that. It claims, on pretty dubious grounds, that Iran might be planning, at some point down the road, to take some of the uranium it is processing into nuclear fuel to a higher level of purity and make it into an atomic bomb.

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