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Media Flagstones along a Path to War on Iran

By Norman Solomon
t r u t h o u t | Perspective

On Tuesday, big alarm bells went off in the national media echo chamber, and major US news outlets showed that they knew the drill. Iran's nuclear activities were pernicious, most of all, because people in high places in Washington said so.

It didn't seem to matter much that just that morning the Washington Post reported: "A major US intelligence review has projected that Iran is about a decade away from manufacturing the key ingredient for a nuclear weapon, roughly doubling the previous estimate of five years, according to government sources with firsthand knowledge of the new analysis. The carefully hedged assessments, which represent consensus among US intelligence agencies, contrast with forceful public statements by the White House."

By evening - hours after the Iranian government said it would no longer suspend activities related to enriching uranium - American news outlets were making grave pronouncements, amplifying the statements from French, British and German officials closing ranks with the Bush administration. On television in the United States, a narrow range of talking heads detoured around the USA's profuse nuclear hypocrisies.

Yes, officials in Washington and their allies conceded, an Iranian restart of uranium enrichment activities would not violate the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. But, as a Washington Post article put it Wednesday, the Iranian nuclear program was "built in secret over 18 years" and "the clandestine nature of the effort created deep suspicions in Washington and elsewhere about Iran's intentions."

In sharp contrast, no "suspicions" are needed about the nuclear activities of two of Iran's bitterest enemies, Israel and Pakistan. Both have produced atomic weapons. Unlike Iran, those two US allies have refused to sign the Non-Proliferation Treaty and do not submit to inspections by the International Atomic Energy Agency.

For good measure, last month the US government announced plans to engage in cooperation on atomic energy projects with the Indian government, which has nuclear bombs and has not signed the NPT.

So, the nuclear moralists in Washington have no problem with Israeli, Pakistani and Indian nuclear weapons, developed and stockpiled with contemptuous disregard for the Non-Proliferation Treaty. But the White House and talking heads of US television are insisting that Iran has no right to do what the treaty allows it and other signers to do - develop nuclear power, ostensibly to generate electricity.

The latest US media uproar about Iran's nuclear program is part of a dream starting to come true for neo-cons in Washington who fantasize about "regime change" in Tehran. More realistically, for the nearer term, the Bush administration is setting the agenda for a US air attack on Iran.

"This notion that the United States is getting ready to attack Iran is simply ridiculous," President Bush told a news conference in late February. He added in the same breath: "and having said that, all options are on the table." Assembled journalists laughed.

Norman Solomon is the author of the new book War Made Easy: How Presidents and Pundits Keep Spinning Us to Death. For information, go to


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Why shift attention to Iran when it was bin Laden that attacked this country?

Where is bin Laden and what has Bush done to bring him to justice?

Is this administration just going to round up random people off the street (some innocent) and torture them in Abu Ghraib?

Where is bin Laden?
This administration is so incompetent-- Why hasn't bin Laden been brought to justice? Why won't Fox News keep the heat on bin Laden and countries that shelter him?

Iran has become very powerful since the bungled US invasion. Juan Cole is right-- Iran is the winner.

Bin Laden is also the disgusting winner, because Bush won't chase him (chicken), and because Iraq is giving a free insurgency to bin Ladens broader cause.

George W Bush-- bin Laden's greatest recruiter?
We can't recruit enough troops in the USA!!!
And bin Laden is sowing record recruits. Thank GW Bush.

Neocon traitors.
Impeach the lot of them.

Bush has fired anyone competent on the terrorism front (or like Scheuer, they quit because they were shackled from doing their duty of protecting this country)--

Bush's approval is now historically low-- it was low in Sept 2001, remember, (then shot up after the attacks which he FAILED TO PREVENT)--

now he won't invest extra funds to have containers checked at ports...

Would someone tell me... does he just not give a damn about human life? Not give a damn about this country? Are he and Cheney just going to hunker down in a bunker in NORAD while they effectively "roll out the red carpet" for future terrorist strikes? Iraq is RECRUITING TERRORISTS. Got it?

We're not effectively checking our ports. Got it?

Bin Laden has not been brought to justice. Got it?

Rove is outing agents who work on counter terrorism. Got it?

Would some one please explain just what in hell is going on?

Terrorism is a Bush necessity - prevention is not in Bush's interest -

YOUR QUESTION REGARDING BEN LADEN IS CERTAINLY REASONABLE. Please allow me to direct you to 9/11 busters home page. after you pullup their page, scroll down to where you come to a list where there is one that says"misc audio/video of evidence exposing the 9/11 cover up click on that link and watch the entire video. i thank that may assist you in understanding that BEN LADEN may actually be irrelivant. watch the video, and decide for yourself. ill look here for any response you may have sir**Humphrey**



Israel is using America like a cheap whore. Bush and Co are willing pimps in her degradation.

Something terrible is happening. God help us all.

We cannot let this administration do this to us again!

W is out of town and Dick is "Home Alone"!

How's this for a screen play?

1. President Bush "flips off" the press/American People.
The gesture means, "Fuck all of you."

2. President Bush "flips off" the US Senate by his recess appointment
of John Bolton. UN now successfully blocked as deterent to

3. Main Stream Media (MSM) actually starts to report on war in Iraq
complete with sentimental pictures of WHITE grandmothers and
children putting flowers on soldier's graves.

4. MSM really plays up the "clandestine" nuclear capabilities and
ambitions of Iran.

5. The Legislative Branch goes into recess and Bush goes to his
ranch for 5 weeks (I hear this is a new lazy-boy record)

6. MSM gets new warning from "Bin Laden's #2 man himself" to expect
new "terror attacts."

7. FEMA Region IV (South East) exercises to begin anytime now.
Scenario: Terrorists detonate a 10 kilo-ton nuke that is
smuggled through Charleston, South Carolina (Masonic Twist:
Charleston and Baghdad are both at 32 Degrees on the map and
Charleston is where Albert Pike, the PT Barnum of White Anglo
Saxon Protestant Supremism originated his "Scottish Rite" Black

8. Soldiers at all southern military bases are being denied leave
for "no reason" for the month of August.

9. The planet Mars, (associated with the God of War) is the closest
it has been to Earth in over 6000 years. Interesting note that
Mars' two moons which symbolize the two horses pulling Mar's
war-chariot are named Phobos and Deimos ("fear" and "panic").

10. The MSM and the shadow government, embolden by the fact that they
got away with lying about Pearl Harbor, the Kennedy assassinations, the REAL story of the Watergate Break-in (nice photo of Nixon's henchmen dressed as bums in Dallas), the 9/11 attacks,
the illegal invasion of Afghanistan and Iraq, and the complete suppression of the Downing Street Minutes AND the outing of CIA
operative Plame by Karl Rove, decide to go for it and let the
CIA/MI5/MOSSAD guys detonate a soviet-era nuke on American Soil.

11. The population panics and allows Bush to declare martial law
under the FEMA statutes and orders full nuke strikes on Iran.

12. Russia and China meanwhile hold joint military exercises while
battling mysterious synthetic Flu virus that stand to become
a pandemic

13. Since anyone could be a "terrorist", FEMA has no choice but to
start rounding up EVERYONE and processing them at their new secret
concentration camps. Smart chip National IDs are declared necessary
for the war effort and everyone is implanted and released provided
that their "permanent records" are of good standing. Hey, why waste
an opportunity to do a little "house cleaning" while you have the chance?" not to mention reinstating chain-gang prison labor to aid
the Global War effort.

14. Like all military Imperial dictatorships, this new Rome of course rots from within just like in "I Claudius" while being
attacked from every possible angle by people that refuse to live
as slaves.

15. The WASP macho leaders are overthrown and finally get the
therapy they need based on the work of Dr. Wilhelm Reich and
Dr. Timothy Leary.

16. Everyone lives happily ever after.

I hope I am around in September to finish this piece of "fiction."

Ah, you left out the best part. Dubya must be "lost" in the attack to make it the ultimate "Skull and Bones" Moloch sacrifice of the
child to the Bohemian Grove Owl god.

After all, junior has always been a disappointment to dear old daddy
Bush and grandpa Prescott. They didn't nickname him in Skull & Bones
"Temporary" for nothing. Now THAT would work the Americans up into a
blood frenzie for sure.

In Fascist systems, EVERYONE is expendible, especially the women and children.

From last nights Lou Dobbs:

This is Kitty Pilgrim, who sat in for Dobbs.

PILGRIM: My next guest says Iran poses a clear and present danger to the United States. Kenneth Timmerman is the author to "Countdown to Crisis: The Coming Nuclear Showdown with Iran." He joins me now from Washington. And thanks for being with us.

How worried are you about Ahmadinejad and his hard line rhetoric?

KENNETH TIMMERMAN, AUTHOR: Well, first of all, this man is a killer. He began his career as one of the hostage takers in one of the -- leaders of the group that took the hostages in Tehran in 1979. He's been fingered by the Austrian Interior Ministry for his involvement in murdering an Iranian dissident in Vienna in 1989. He has a deep involvement in terrorism.

This is a man who's also announced that Iran will not give up its nuclear capabilities. We're headed for a showdown.

PILGRIM: The Europeans today saying we're in a major international crisis if Iran resumes its activities. Would you agree with that assessment?

TIMMERMAN: Absolutely, Kitty. And you've got here even the French who have said that if Iran resumes producing uraniumhexafloride, which is the feed material to make enriched uranium, they will take Iran, along with us, to the U.N. Security Council for sanctions.

Now, that's a very serious step. People might not think the U.N. is a very powerful force, given how they failed to act with Iraq, but to have the French behind us with this, the other Europeans behind us, is going to make it a challenge to the Iranians.

PILGRIM: That is considerable to have that many countries lined up against Iran on this issue. You've been studying Iran for 20 years. What do they have? What are you worried about?

TIMMERMAN: Well, here's the thing, we now know that they've been importing enrichment equipment for over 10 to 15 years. If they had used the equipment for over 10 to 15 years -- if they had used the equipment we now know they possess, they could have enough nuclear material to build 20 to 25 bombs.

We also know that they have missiles and those missiles are deployed -- in some cases they're deployed in deep-buried underground sites, which I describe in the book. We -- and they're pointed at Israel. They're working on longer-range missiles that will be able to hit Europe and later on, the United States. They have a broad nuclear and missile capability that is very threatening.

PILGRIM: The IAEA, the nuclear arm watchdog of the United Nations, has said that they may convene a special session. They can't put their monitoring equipment in place until next week and they might have to discuss courses -- other courses of action. What are we talking about here, other courses of action?

TIMMERMAN: Well, I'm not quite sure what the IAEA has in mind. Until now, they have not had the political will to take Iran's violations and refer them to the U.N. Security Council, which is what they should have done quite some time ago.

I've been to Vienna, I followed some of those meetings. Frankly, until recently, they have not been very helpful and they've allowed the Iranians to buy more time. Now, it looks like their time is running out and it's going to go to the U.N. Security Council.

PILGRIM: Yes. What are we talking about in terms of real crisis here in the timeline, Kenneth?

TIMMERMAN: Well, for one thing, we don't know for a fact whether the Iranians have actually built weapons. There's a lot of suspicion involved. For instance, they have a site in Parsheen, (ph) that they won't allow the IAEA to inspect, where the U.S. and others believe that they were doing weaponization work.

We also know that they have a new design for their missile re- entry vehicle, specifically to carry a nuclear warhead. This was something that Colin Powell, when he was secretary of state, last November revealed to the press. Now, why would they redesign the re- entry vehicle of their missile unless they had a bomb designed.

PILGRIM: Iran has a pattern of lying and hiding their nuclear progress. How do we expect them to be up-front, going forward?

TIMMERMAN: Well, they haven't been up-front until now and I don't expect they're going to be up-front, going forward. They have lied the to the IAEA, as you mentioned. They have made promises, which they have repeatedly violated.

They promised that they would not begin again this making of nuclear material and here they are, now announcing that they're going to do it anyway. So, they really have not kept their word and I think they've run out of time with the IAEA.

PILGRIM: Thanks very much for being with us tonight, Kenneth Timmerman. Thank you.

TIMMERMAN: Thank you.

I saw a similar piece, yesterday, where the announcer intoned something about "the nuclear problem Iran is posing for the US."
These people have no shame.

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