Archive for Iran

ganji2.jpgBoston Review: “Akbar Ganji is Iran’s leading political dissident. He has been given over a dozen human-rights awards, most recently the British House of Commons Press Gallery Speaker Abbot Award. Since his release from prison in 2006 after serving a six-year term for exposing human-rights abuses, he has been on a world speaking tour raising awareness about the human-rights and pro-democracy struggle inside Iran. He is working on the third installment of his “Republic Manifesto,” which lays out a strategy for a nonviolent transition to democracy in Iran, along with a book of dialogues with prominent Western philosophers and intellectuals. He plans to return to Iran, where, he has been told, he will be re-arrested upon his arrival.”

A couple of snippets from this intriguing article [emphasis mine]:

“The disastrous war in Iraq is the natural outcome of America’s military approach to the problems of the Middle East. In Iran, this approach is rapidly bringing the Bush administration to the brink of military confrontation with the government. But an attack against Iran would be morally and legally indefensible, and will produce calamitous results.

In saying this, I defend the nation of Iran, not the domestic or foreign policy of its current repressive, despotic government. But opposition to the current regime must not lead to a blanket endorsement of U.S. foreign policy.”

“On the nuclear side, Israel has about 100 to 200 ready-to-launch nuclear warheads. The January report of the International Institute for Strategic Studies put Iran’s nuclear-weapons manufacturing capacity years away: “If, one day, Iran has 3,000 operational centrifuges, the IISS estimates that it would take a minimum of 9 to 11 months for it to produce 25 kg of high-grade enriched uranium which would be enough for making one explosive weapon. On the most optimistic assessment, that day is two or three years away.”

There are lunatics among us who believe that bombing Iran is morally right. Iran’s leader in opposing the theocratic government does not. Ganji is an investigative journalist who has done time in Iran’s prisons and has put himself through repeated hunger strikes. The pants-wetting, Caliphate-fearing preemptive warriors would have us ignore Iran’s internal political situation, ignore the repercussions of bombing another nation in the middle east, and ignore the reality of the threat.

Ganji wants major change in Iran, and he wants to adhere to his principles along the way. He knows that U.S. interventionism in Iran fuels much of the anti-American rancor there. He also knows that America will do more harm than good with any sort of attack on Iran.

It’s time for some serious diplomacy. Diplomacy that lets American negotiators really show their stuff. We don’t need any more of the lip servicey saber-rattling we get from George W. Bush and his slavish toadies.

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Cheney in 1992 on why invading Iraq was a terrible Idea

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War Criminal much?

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I listened to Iran’s secondary leader Mahmoud Ahmadinejad yesterday and Columbia’s bizarro introduction and now I’m wondering what you think? Crooks and Liars did a compilation vid.

Are we a bed-wetter nation that can’t exhibit common courtesy because we are too insecure to let a tyrant’s words speak for themselves? Or was whiny Columbia Prez Lee Bollinger giving a Holocaust-denier (and homosexuality-denier) his just rewards? Or did President (not-for-life) Ahmadinejad show himself to be the smartest man in the room?

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Pants-Wetters Vs. Reality

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not-terrified-712860.jpgThe Islamofascist-Caliphate-fearing media warriors are doing their level best to inform us that Iran, which may be able to have a nuclear weapon someday, is almost as dangerous as liberals. Rumors of planned airstrikes against Iran are all over the place, and we’ve got a President whose mission from God likely includes turning that nation into a devastated wasteland.

General John Abizaid has this to say:

“Every effort should be made to stop Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons, but failing that, the world could live with a nuclear-armed regime in Tehran, a recently retired commander of U.S. forces in the Middle East said Monday.

John Abizaid, the retired Army general who headed Central Command for nearly four years, said he was confident that if Iran gained nuclear arms, the United States could deter it from using them.

“Iran is not a suicide nation,” he said. “I mean, they may have some people in charge that don’t appear to be rational, but I doubt that the Iranians intend to attack us with a nuclear weapon.”
“There are ways to live with a nuclear Iran,” Abizaid said in remarks at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, a think tank. “Let’s face it, we lived with a nuclear Soviet Union, we’ve lived with a nuclear China, and we’re living with (other) nuclear powers as well.”

How many days until the pro-war neocon right, still mired in their indignation over MoveOn’s perjorative reference to Gen. Petraeus, start calling Abizaid a traitor?

Categories : Chickenhawks, Iran
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Pentagon ‘three-day blitz’ plan for Iran

The Times Online is reporting “The Pentagon has drawn up plans for massive airstrikes against 1,200 targets in Iran, designed to annihilate the Iranians’ military capability in three days, according to a national security expert.

Alexis Debat, director of terrorism and national security at the Nixon Center, said last week that US military planners were not preparing for “pinprick strikes” against Iran’s nuclear facilities. “They’re about taking out the entire Iranian military,” he said.

Debat was speaking at a meeting organised by The National Interest, a conservative foreign policy journal. He told The Sunday Times that the US military had concluded: “Whether you go for pinprick strikes or all-out military action, the reaction from the Iranians will be the same.” It was, he added, a “very legitimate strategic calculus”.

President George Bush intensified the rhetoric against Iran last week, accusing Tehran of putting the Middle East “under the shadow of a nuclear holocaust”. He warned that the US and its allies would confront Iran “before it is too late”.


Read the rest of the article.


UPDATE: From Daily Kos

“We Are Going To Hit Iran. Bigtime”

This particular blog post was debunked. Hattip to Paul at Brainshrub



Tick-Tock, Tick-Tock: Countdown to Midnight in Persia

Chris Floyd writes “Day after day, almost hour by hour, fresh confirmation comes of the impending American attack on Iran. Yet the same surreal malaise that hung over public affairs before the war of aggression against Iraq has descended again. Everyone knows the war is coming and nothing will stop it, but the strange, ludicrous shadow play of sham “debate” goes on, as if there were some kind of political or diplomatic maneuver out there that could deflect the Bush-Cheney junta from its long-chosen course. But nothing will stop them, just as nothing — not even 10 million people in the streets around the world, the largest protest in human history — stopped them from the rape of Iraq. It’s what they want to do — and they will do it…”

The latest confirmation arrives from Juan Cole’s new spin-off blog, “Global Affairs,” where Barnett Rubin writes:

Today I received a message from a friend who has excellent connections in Washington and whose information has often been prescient. According to this report, as in 2002, the rollout will start after Labor Day, with a big kickoff on September 11. My friend had spoken to someone in one of the leading neo-conservative institutions. He summarized what he was told this way:

They [the source’s institution] have “instructions” (yes, that was the word used) from the Office of the Vice-President to roll out a campaign for war with Iran in the week after Labor Day; it will be coordinated with the American Enterprise Institute, the Wall Street Journal, the Weekly Standard, Commentary, Fox, and the usual suspects. It will be heavy sustained assault on the airwaves, designed to knock public sentiment into a position from which a war can be maintained. Evidently they don’t think they’ll ever get majority support for this — they want something like 35-40 percent support, which in their book is “plenty.”

Of course I cannot verify this report. But besides all the other pieces of information about this circulating, I heard last week from a former U.S. government contractor. According to this friend, someone in the Department of Defense called, asking for cost estimates for a model for reconstruction in Asia. The former contractor finally concluded that the model was intended for Iran. This anecdote is also inconclusive, but it is consistent with the depth of planning that went into the reconstruction effort in Iraq and Afghanistan.

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Could the Bush Administration really be this stupid? Wait, don’t answer that.

Almost every decision they have made has been a disaster, and that alone lends credence to articles above.

It just makes me sick.

Happy Labor Day…

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Fox News Hearts Iran (jk)

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Robert Greenwald writes “I remember very clearly the daily fearmongering led by FOX as they cheered for war with Iraq. The 24/7 images, sound effects, yelling and threatening were an ever-present drumbeat for war. We had to invade, and we had to invade now.. anyone who didn’t see that was a traitor. They viciously attacked those of us who worked to get out the truth.

You’d think that with the complete failure in Iraq, those days would be behind us. Sadly, you’d be wrong.

FOX wants war with Iran.

It’s almost too ridiculous to believe, but it’s shockingly real. We’ve already compiled over 4 hours of FOX footage… the same images, sound effects, yelling and threatening that led the U.S. to invade Iraq is happening right now to sell a war with Iran. They are saying the exact same things!!

Here is the video evidence, side-by-side with what they said about Iraq…”

Read the rest of the article.


Man, 30 years from now when more information has come out, when it has all been compiled, it will be fascinating to read just how deep the propaganda machine went with this administration.

Categories : Iran, Media
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McHenry set to attack Iran

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Insists we wait until 2008 to evaluate surge in Iraq

North Carolina’s 10th District Representative Pat McHenry told Hardball’s Chris Matthews today that he supports a military strike in Iran “to eliminate their nuclear capability. “Matthews confirmed with this question: “You believe the possession of a nuclear weapon is itself justification for a US air attack?” McHenry replied, “I believe so.”

Here’s the video (excuse the quality). If you listen past the McHenry comments you can hear some sanity from Alabama’s Representative Artur Davis, who spoke last month at North Carolina’s YD convention in Greensboro.

Earlier in the MSNBC interview Matthews asked McHenry, “When can we ask ourselves if this surge is working.” Pat insisted that this “new plan is taking hold.” Then he named 2008 as the time to do any evaluation. Here’s that video:

Again, stay tuned after McHenry’s comments to here Rep. Artur Davis speak rationally about our prospects in Iraq. Davis said:

“This world is full of tragedy and suffering. Our military and our power can’t always turn around tragedy and suffering. We’re learning the limits of our power in Iraq and a wiser president would understand that and would take this vast number of troops out of harm’s way.”

Categories : Iran, Iraq, Patrick McHenry
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Noam Chomsky writes at TomPaine “The results of an attack on Iran could be horrendous. After all, according to a recent study of “the Iraq effect” by terrorism specialists Peter Bergen and Paul Cruickshank, using government and Rand Corporation data, the Iraq invasion has already led to a seven-fold increase in terror. The “Iran effect” would probably be far more severe and long-lasting. British military historian Corelli Barnett speaks for many when he warns that “an attack on Iran would effectively launch World War III.”

What are the plans of the increasingly desperate clique that narrowly holds political power in the U.S.? We cannot know. Such state planning is, of course, kept secret in the interests of “security.” Review of the declassified record reveals that there is considerable merit in that claim—though only if we understand “security” to mean the security of the Bush administration against their domestic enemy, the population in whose name they act…”

“…Doubtless Iran’s government merits harsh condemnation, including for its recent actions that have inflamed the crisis. It is, however, useful to ask how we would act if Iran had invaded and occupied Canada and Mexico and was arresting U.S. government representatives there on the grounds that they were resisting the Iranian occupation (called “liberation,” of course). Imagine as well that Iran was deploying massive naval forces in the Caribbean and issuing credible threats to launch a wave of attacks against a vast range of sites—nuclear and otherwise—in the United States, if the U.S. government did not immediately terminate all its nuclear energy programs (and, naturally, dismantle all its nuclear weapons). Suppose that all of this happened after Iran had overthrown the government of the U.S. and installed a vicious tyrant (as the US did to Iran in 1953), then later supported a Russian invasion of the U.S. that killed millions of people (just as the U.S. supported Saddam Hussein’s invasion of Iran in 1980, killing hundreds of thousands of Iranians, a figure comparable to millions of Americans). Would we watch quietly..?”

“…It is easy to understand an observation by one of Israel’s leading military historians, Martin van Creveld. After the U.S. invaded Iraq, knowing it to be defenseless, he noted, “Had the Iranians not tried to build nuclear weapons, they would be crazy.”

Surely no sane person wants Iran (or any nation) to develop nuclear weapons. A reasonable resolution of the present crisis would permit Iran to develop nuclear energy, in accord with its rights under the Non-Proliferation Treaty, but not nuclear weapons. Is that outcome feasible? It would be, given one condition: that the U.S. and Iran were functioning democratic societies in which public opinion had a significant impact on public policy.

As it happens, this solution has overwhelming support among Iranians and Americans, who generally are in agreement on nuclear issues. The Iranian-American consensus includes the complete elimination of nuclear weapons everywhere (82 percent of Americans); if that cannot yet be achieved because of elite opposition, then at least a “nuclear-weapons-free zone in the Middle East that would include both Islamic countries and Israel” (71 percent of Americans). Seventy-five percent of Americans prefer building better relations with Iran to threats of force. In brief, if public opinion were to have a significant influence on state policy in the U.S. and Iran, resolution of the crisis might be at hand, along with much more far-reaching solutions to the global nuclear conundrum….”


There is a reason that Noam Chomsky is an honorary Scrutiny Hooligan!

Did we send him flowers this year?

Categories : Iran, Iraq, Uncategorized
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The Iranians are Coming, The Iranians are Coming…

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Scrutiny Hooligans, remember the Axis of Evil? Let’s see it was North Korea, Iraq, and…..Iran! Well, it seems the Bush Administration has decided to turn its attention to “looking into” whether Iran has any LINK to Al-Queida and 9/11. Israel is ready to ASSIST this time, which will be helpful since Bush has made it CLEAR he wants a regime change in Iran, though the acting CIA head, John McLaughlin, has gone on record, saying there is no credible EVIDENCE that Iran had anything to do with 9/11. Of course, evidence hasn’t been high on this administrations list of reasons to go to war; guess we’ll have to wait and see. It wouldn’t shock this Hooligan if the charges against Iran didn’t grow, heading into November 4th…

And so as not to depress the living @#$% out of you. A toast to our friends at the ACLU for this little GEM!

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