Israel is trying to hook us into a war with Iran– Matthews and Baer speculate

Israel/PalestineUS Politics
on 160 Comments
Robert Baer 2
Robert Baer

An important crack in the wall: last night Chris Matthews hosted former spook Robert Baer, now of Time magazine, and NBC foreign correspondent Richard Engel and they both said that Israel is escalating hostilities with Iran to provoke Iran into an attack that will justify American military response. As Matthews said, oh, so they’re trying to hook us into a war?

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Baer is the leader of this conversation. He has no doubt that Israel killed the Iranian scientist (and Engel echoes). He has no doubt of the aim: war. Matthews seems to concur, but with a faked puzzlement.  

That is the most curious part of the exchange, to me, Matthews’s practiced innocence. At the end, he says the most important words, we’ll be following this till the election. And in a signal to his bosses, he says, Because it’s politics. It’s not about Israel’s divine right to exist. It’s about the lobby playing out in our politics. I think that Matthews is telling the Comcast boys– David Cohen, who formerly chaired the Jewish federations in Philadelphia, Matthews’s home town– that he has an obligation to cover this stuff because it’s about America going to war and it’s in the political campaign and that doesn’t make him an enemy of Israel (Israel has plenty of enemies around the world, he has already said, here). But to the partial transcript:

Baer: It’s undoubtedly the Israelis, it couldn’t be anyone else. The Israelis as far as I can see are trying to provoke the Iranians into doing something.

Matthews: We are vulnerable over there. We have an American who has just been condemned to death for espionage.

Baer: What we’re seeing is an escalation, Chris, and it’s almost as if the intention is to get the Iranians to fire a missile at an oil tanker in the Strait of Hormuz, which would cause a wider war.

Matthews: Why would that help us?

Baer: It wouldn’t help us, it would help them… because the Israelis would force us into hitting the Iranians, hit them back, and that’s exactly what they want.

Matthews (with virginal voice): Oh so it’s the Israelis forcing us into this….

Engel: Incredibly hard sanctions on Iran [have the country] backed into a corner. If you want to hit Iran and you need a pretext to do that…the way to do that is by forcing your adversary into making some kind of aggressive move and everyone will think you’re correct when you respond by force….

Matthews: This is moving toward creating a pretext for an eventual attack on nuclear facilities?

Baer: Oh absolutely… This is speculation… I know the White House doesn’t want a war with Iran. But we see from all quarters, this pressure, this logic of war that keeps on marching forward… The Iranians [Baer means Israelis] look at it this way. They have a year or two [in which to act]… They can’t be seen to be initiating this. So they keep on assassinating the people in Iran, you will get a reaction out of them that will look stupid… then the rest of the world will say, you know there’s nothing else we could have done, except hit the Israelis [he means Iranians]….

Engel: The Israelis can’t be seen, or it’s very difficult for them to be seen, as drawing first blood… Killing a 32 year old scientist who worked in procurement is not going to stop the program… They’ve so far killed five people…

Matthews: How can the U.S. not see this as adversarial by Israel to try and hook us into a war? If that’s seen to manipulate that into a war we don’t want to get into, how can we not see that as from an ally, hostile? … Bob, you’re saying that Israel is trying to provoke the Iranians into attacking.

Baer: If we’re attacked, it gives Israelis and the Americans, it puts us on the same side to hit the Iranians. They need our Air Force.

Matthews. We’re going to be hearing about this from now to election day. I just read Elliott Abrams in the Wall Street Journal. All the politics are on the table now. It’s all involved in politics and not just the survival of Israel down the road.

Common Dreams notes that Robert Baer, the long-time senior CIA officer who spent 21 years working the Middle East, made the same case to the Guardian:

Baer argues that the impact on the nuclear program itself is likely to be so minimal, it is unlikely to be the aim of the murder campaign.

“It’s a provocation,” he says. “My theory is that Israel couldn’t get the White House to agree to bombing. It is not satisfied with sanctions, so the Israelis are trying to provoke the Iranians into launching a missile and starting a war.”

Robert Baer
Robert Baer
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Robert Baer 2
About Philip Weiss

Philip Weiss is Founder and Co-Editor of Mondoweiss.net.

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160 Responses

  1. Bill in Maryland
    January 13, 2012, 9:53 am

    Thank you Phil.
    Baer: “It wouldn’t help us, it would help them… because the Israelis would force us into hitting the Iranians, hit them back, and that’s exactly what they want.” This really ties in with the need for Israel and America’s Israel-firsters to artificially generate a “Pearl Harbor” scenario, as in the Patrick Clawson/ WINEP link you posted yesterday. Sick and Machiavellian!

  2. Dan Crowther
    January 13, 2012, 10:02 am

    I sometimes wonder where Phil is coming from with this stuff…..

    The rational response to the Israeli’s doing this (trying to rope the US into war, and fight on their behalf) would be – tell Tel Aviv they risk US military retaliation on Israel. But I can’t think that Weiss would want “his people” threatened like that, would he?

    If someone has an idea for how to deal with Israel as it is, other than an explicit threat to use force, please let me know….

    • Bill in Maryland
      January 13, 2012, 10:09 am

      Give me a “B”, give me a “D”, give me an “S”…

      • Dan Crowther
        January 13, 2012, 10:39 am

        BDS to end the occupation and apartheid sure, but to stop israeli militarism, sabotage and its enablers in the US? Yea, I just dont know about that

    • Philip Weiss
      January 13, 2012, 10:12 am

      well dan one place im coming from is they aint my people. they’re israelis. but im just trying to get up the latest breaking stuff on the Biggest Issue in American Foreign Policy!

      • Richard Witty
        January 13, 2012, 10:23 am

        Your mother’s very close friend is not “your people”. Your mother and father when they visit are not “your people”. My aunt when she visited was not “your people”.

        What constructs “your people”?

        Family, neighbors, friends, political attitudes, country, colleagues, generation, what?

      • Dan Crowther
        January 13, 2012, 10:38 am

        Phil-
        They aren’t? I don’t get it – you talk about jews as your people all the time, at least american jews, just the other day, in the “trespassing jew” story (great read btw)…. sort of implicit in my argument is that there needs to be the same shot across the bow to the american jewish establishment, which could be construed (and would certainly be taken) as a threat… I know you “single out” certain jews as part of the problem, but it seems like we’re reaching a point where generalizations might be in order- this makes me uncomfortable, so I can only assume it makes you uncomfortable as well…..

        In any event, your still my main man, I dont want to diminish the importance of the work you do, or the importance of these issues – its just that some posts lead the reader in a direction that might not be where you want them to go. But that’s really not your responsibility, is it? Ive probably made zero sense here, huh? ha. Gonna take a timeout…

      • American
        January 13, 2012, 11:16 am

        I don’t see a big contridiction in Phil.
        It’s more like a conflict, than contridiction because he does have a thing about Jewishness that is a little obsessive.
        BUT a person can identify more with something or people other than their own in group when it involves something bigger than their group.
        I identify as Southern in many ways but that is overridden by a higher identity as American for example if we are talking about loyalties.
        Although I might want to identify as something else if this country doesn’t reform itself.

      • Hostage
        January 14, 2012, 3:58 am

        Dan a quick review of the articles and comments here should illustrate that there is a great deal of difference between being a member of one the Jewish ethnic groups, practicing Judaism, and being an Israeli national.

        eee’s just an ignorant reactionary who wants to return to a misanthropic pre-enlightenment “Jewish” Utopia. He and his countrymen can’t pull it off without considerable facilitation by others. So they spend tremendous sums and efforts conducting propagands campaigns to conflate Zionism with Judaism and Israeli nationality with Jewish ethnicity.

      • marc b.
        January 13, 2012, 11:01 am

        yes, dan, it is puzzling sometimes. weiss does frequently acknowledge his natural affinity for others who are jewish, because they are jewish. presumably that would include jewish israelis. i’ll admit that i have a natural affinity for some people on the basis of an apparent shared history (which is not ethnic or religious in my case), but it’s a bit disengenuous to say that ‘they’re israelis’ when there’s a boat load of americans getting all priapic over the prospects of a war with iran. does weiss feel a natural affinity for pamela geller? she’s not an israeli.

      • Annie Robbins
        January 13, 2012, 11:17 am

        it’s huge phil, huge. it’s rare we here stuff on msm from the same angle were reporting it on the same day or the day after. yesterday you were all over this, this has been the reaction of so many in the blogosphere..and to here this from matthews the very same day. (assuming it was last night)

        Matthews: How can the U.S. not see this as adversarial by Israel to try and hook us into a war? If that’s seen to manipulate that into a war we don’t want to get into, how can we not see that as from an ally, hostile? … Bob, you’re saying that Israel is trying to provoke the Iranians into attacking.

        really amazing

      • American
        January 13, 2012, 12:26 pm

        Yep……Matthews is saying something big here…feigned innocence and sly on his part, he’s knows what up, always has.
        But still Mathews going this far this is a biggie for cable news.
        Tells me people who are in positions to know the scoop and scuttlebutt in DC are really, really worried about the zios and Israel suceeding in getting us to hit Iran.

      • gracie fr
        January 13, 2012, 2:21 pm

        Most likely, Chris Mathews is playing coy because he doesn’t want to get slammed as anti-Semetic if and when the higher-ups make that call in response to complaints by “offended viewers”. Nothing could be worse for one of CNN’s star hosts than to be put on “probation” during an election year…. Stop squabbling….The Iran escalation is serious……

      • Annie Robbins
        January 13, 2012, 11:36 am

        Thank you for at last admitting you are not Jewish.

        you’re gruesome eee. go back and read the main post. this is about israel pushing us to war, not ‘the jews’. this is a political action by a state. phil isn’t israeli and he’s not one of the israel firsters in this country. that doesn’t mean he isn’t jewish and it doesn’t mean he has no relations in israel.

        to the extent people start associating the actions of israel with all jews this is a dangerous thing, and comments like your are perpetuating that danger. you should stop. definitely something that does not need escalation around the discourse of israel pushing us to war.

      • eljay
        January 13, 2012, 11:51 am

        >> you’re gruesome eee. go back and read the main post. this is about israel pushing us to war, not ‘the jews’.

        He knows it, but it’s his job as arbiter of “real Jewishness” to be vigilant and to swing the axe of excommunication whenever necessary.

      • marc b.
        January 13, 2012, 12:04 pm

        eee is just pathological, annie. he’s not happy (that’s not quite the right word) without the ever present prospect for murder, either through the comforting fantasy that everyone is genetically programmed to exterminate ‘his people’, or his stalinist auto-authority to erase people from his list of approved ‘jews’. you know what, phil irritates the shit out of me sometimes with his obsessive-compulsive navel gazing, but anyone who eee seeks to excommunicate really must be good people.

      • American
        January 13, 2012, 12:20 pm

        You know by eee previous statements that he would like to see the US Jews collectively come under fire so they would all flee to Israel don’t you?

        Although where he thinks Israel would put all of them is beyond me.

      • Froggy
        January 13, 2012, 1:17 pm

        I thought Phil Weiss was an American.

      • Dan Crowther
        January 13, 2012, 1:56 pm

        eee’s comments are worth taking seriously – and they also speak toward the point I was attempting to make earlier.

        “Do not worry about American Jews, if anyone lays a finger on them me and thousands of others will quickly come to help them set up militias and fight along side them to protect them. You can bet on it.”
        —–
        Now, we can feel any number of ways about the E’s statement here. But I would say, why is it unacceptable for Americans to feel that way about Americans when Israeli aggression is involved? The Israeli’s are unabashed about their willingness to resort to violence, but here we voluntarily neuter ourselves, why?

        I think part of the reason is– and this is what I was getting at with my question to Phil earlier– most of the I/P discourse in this country is lead by Jews.

        If an ally like Indonesia for example was threatening to start a war with its neighbors, knowing that the retaliation would be directed at US installations etc – would we even be discussing what the US response would be? Of course not. the US –with the support of most everyone here I would assume– would have an aircraft carrier group over there in an instant, and there would be a declaration that Indonesia risks military engagement with the US if its continues its course. But where Israel is involved, that is completely off the table.

        So, even among non zionist jews there seems to be somewhat of a double standard for Israel. Israel can kill, maim, exploit etc – we can only discuss it. Or we can plead with them to stop, plead with american jews for them to stop etc – but again, would mexican americans even be involved in a conversation about Mexico actively endangering americans? To ask the question is to answer it.

        So, when my main man phil posts a “israel is trying to start a war between the US and Iran” – I have to wonder, would Phil Weiss support (at least the threat of) military “intervention” in Israel? And I also have to wonder whether the Rome”just war” Slaters of the world would support such a thing. I think not. (at least slater wouldn’t, honestly dont know about phil)

      • Jerome Slater
        January 13, 2012, 2:58 pm

        Annie says to eee: “you’re gruesome.”

        I’ve publicly apologized to Mondoweissers for my (private) email blast to her a few days ago, and I’ll take this opportunity to apologize directly to her.

        That out of the way, let me call your attention to what you’ve called eee. I don’t like his comment either, not one bit, but isn’t it a significant escalation to say that someone–not even merely the comment itself–but the person making it, is “gruesome?”

        I would say an apology is in order.

      • Dan Crowther
        January 13, 2012, 3:20 pm

        eee is attempting to be clever, but clearly knows I meant the Mexican State, and was talking about the same situation with only “mexico” substituted for “israel” — as for American drug use and the mexicans endangering us, that’s absurd. demand for drugs (by americans) is what drives the drug trade, and its american policies that make it a black market, ripe for violence etc

        Im not sure if eee is being thick or not – but for GP, here we go:

        Israel’s actions are designed to initiate a conflict, that they may or may not be involved in, but one that would certainly entail US involvement. That much is understood pretty much across the board.

        The problem with what your saying eee is, the american and israeli militaries are very closely intertwined. US troops are on deck in Israel right now! So, I think it would be rather difficult to convince the Iranians “it was only the Israeli’s” — and that has been the Israeli plan for a long while, make the IDF the fifth branch of the US military.

      • Kathleen
        January 13, 2012, 3:42 pm

        try try try again to divert

      • American
        January 13, 2012, 4:34 pm

        ‘But what is really behind your nastiness is your implied threat that if American Jews do not get Israel “under control” they will be harmed. “..eee

        Once again eee, you make up a statement someone never said or implied. But your comment about getting all the Jews to move to Israel is easily found by anyone.

        And do you have any idea how totally insane this statement/threat says you are?…..

        “Do not worry about American Jews, if anyone lays a finger on them me and thousands of others will quickly come to help them set up militias and fight along side them to protect them. You can bet on it.”

        I ask again how old are you cause you sound like a teenager. In fact the eee personality on here varies occasionally from not quite so crazy to full out crazy ,so maybe there is more than one eee.

      • marc b.
        January 13, 2012, 4:41 pm

        I would say an apology is in order.

        i agree, jerome. why don’t you speak with eee about apologizing to phil? you’re jewish, right? what would your response be if eee were to say you weren’t jewish because your politics aren’t synonymous with his? or if someone were to question your manhood because you weren’t enthusiastic enough about bombing iranians? maybe gruesome isn’t exactly the right word for the occasion, but something just as strong is in order. and not that you aren’t aware of this, but eee’s zionist inquisition isn’t a one-off event, it’s part of his schtick.

      • marc b.
        January 13, 2012, 4:44 pm

        I ask again how old are you cause you sound like a teenager. In fact the eee personality on here varies occasionally from not quite so crazy to full out crazy ,so maybe there is more than one eee.

        i’ve made a similar comment before, american. the syntax changes pretty dramatically too, from polished to infantile. i have little doubt that ‘eee’ is a tag team effort.

      • Carllarc
        January 13, 2012, 4:52 pm

        so you can’t be Jewish if your not Israeli?

      • lobewyper
        January 13, 2012, 6:39 pm

        I agree Phil, this is a tremendous story and the wall of silence doggedly maintained by our MSM is falling–partly due to the huge gathering Ron Paul has already acquired. The MSM has perhaps been told privately by govt. officials that there is no way the US is going to attack Iran and Israel will suffer severe consequences (up to a cut-off of all military aid) if it does so alone.

        I disagree with Dan that the rational US response is to threaten an attack on Tel Aviv, which wouldn’t be supported by the US people at this point, anyway. However, if the Israelis are truly serious about attacking Iran without us, then a rational response would be to privately tell Netanyahu that if he attacks, we will not intervene militarily in any way, nor we we ever sell weapons to them again.

      • MRW
        January 13, 2012, 8:17 pm

        Yeah, I agree this is one of the net effects of RP in this election cycle.

        “the wall of silence doggedly maintained by our MSM is falling–partly due to the huge gathering Ron Paul has already acquired.”

      • Dan Crowther
        January 13, 2012, 11:48 pm

        I didn’t say attack Tel Aviv, I said “tell Tel Aviv”

      • Avi_G.
        January 14, 2012, 12:45 am

        Dan,

        Don’t sweat it.

        It was pretty clear that you meant for the U.S. to apply some pressure on Israel and that you figuratively brought up the use of force to illustrate the urgency of Israel dragging the US into war. Israel’s act, after all, is a threat to U.S. national security.

      • Dan Crowther
        January 14, 2012, 10:27 am

        Cheers Avi my brother

        Here are the questions I now find myself asking – are folks here (myself included sometimes) wanting it to be Israel “taking us to war”?

        With all these stories pointing the finger directly at Israel, shouldn’t we all be very skeptical? By making it a “israel” story, aren’t we at the same time sort of absolving/mitigating the US’s push for war?

        It’s my main problem with Walt &Mearsheimer’s book as well: the US is not some benevolent world power being lead around by the nose, and we would still be doing dirt in the middle east if Israel didnt exist.

        I think the fact that a story like this comes out and not one single person says(in the press etc), “would/should the US retaliate on Israel?” should tell us that the real bosses DONT oppose a US/Iran engagement. If they did, those quotes from US planners etc would have included what I mentioned above.

        I also can’t help but notice that stories like this, coming out now, paint Obama and Co. in a much better light – this alone should merit our skepticism, what evidence besides these stories is there for Obama NOT escalating tensions etc in the Gulf? Someone will say “their going to meet” (us and iran) but meetings have been held with almost all the countries we’ve later destroyed, and the whole “we tried, but the Iranians…..” is certainly a song we’ve heard before

        Election year war. Democratic President doesnt want it, will have to be pushed. Havent we seen this movie before? And to me, like I said, the lack of any “threat” to Israel for its “attempts to start war” tell me a couple of things (1) the US wants war (2) Israel is not acting out of turn (3) there is a tacit acknowledgement that Israel does serve a purpose to the US and US constituencies. Its a well armed client state, big tech sector etc – and it also acts as a perfect obfuscation tool for the real bosses. And I think some of the american jews involved in writing, activism etc play into it. A big bad Israel/Lobby story can also be read as, “US Policy Good underneath it all” — Is this in any way accurate?

      • seanmcbride
        January 14, 2012, 12:24 pm

        It is entirely inaccurate. :) But, really, it is.

      • Citizen
        January 14, 2012, 9:14 pm

        I agree too.

      • yourstruly
        January 15, 2012, 2:02 am

        so that if the scam goes wrong, “hey, don’t blame us {obama et al}, israel and the israel-firsters made us do it.”

      • Dan Crowther
        January 15, 2012, 9:23 am

        yea exactly yoursT

      • American
        January 13, 2012, 7:05 pm

        Hummm…..astute of you marc.
        I hadn’t really noticed it until recently when some ‘polish’ showed up in between the usual mostly juvenile.

      • seanmcbride
        January 13, 2012, 7:35 pm

        eee,

        On what grounds do you presume that the Israeli government or Israel represents the Jewish people or “the Jews”?

        What a strange and dangerous notion.

      • dumvitaestspesest
        January 13, 2012, 7:58 pm

        ‘so maybe there is more than one eee”
        How about triplets??

      • MRW
        January 13, 2012, 8:13 pm

        I thought that, too, marc. The thinking, as well, veers from haredi-style teenage hasbara to the occasional astute analysis.

      • lobewyper
        January 13, 2012, 8:17 pm

        This acknowledgement is potentially very explosive stuff. Why is the MSM putting it out there that Israel is trying to drag us into war??? A possibility: both Repubs and Democrats realize that a US attack/war with Iran (at least before the pres. election) would cause many of their own to defect to Paul, and possibly, permit him to mount a realistic challenge to each of them. If the Israelis attack alone, there is still considerable risk of shifting US popular support toward Paul in a major way. Libertarian congressional candidates could potentially get elected or at least make a respectable showing in several races–which would give the anti-war, anti-interventionists a major platform they don’t currently possess. The fates are aligning visibly now against Israel…

      • Hostage
        January 14, 2012, 2:55 am

        Thank you for at last admitting you are not Jewish.

        After you excommunicated us all, we kept on praying three times a day – only now we thank God that we’re not like the Israelis;-)

      • Hostage
        January 14, 2012, 4:50 am

        When Phil says about the Jewish state that “they ain’t my people” how else can one interpret this except Phil saying he is not Jewish?

        Phil actually said:well dan one place im coming from is they aint my people. they’re israelis

        How can we take your comments seriously if you’re functionally illiterate? I believe that the majority of Jewish people aren’t Israelis. If you have to run TV ads begging your countrymen to return home from the US, there’s no reason to take the population statistics published by the ICBS seriously in the first place.

      • brenda
        January 14, 2012, 10:59 am

        Annie, this is an excellent sorting out of the problem.

        I admired Phil’s statement: “they ain’t my people, they’re Israelis”. That sums it up beautifully, that really does cut cleanly through the propaganda which has this country tied up in knots.

        And your further clarification, beautifully and simply and cleanly done: “to the extent people start associating the actions of israel with all jews, this is a dangerous thing” —

        the two of you are terrific. I wish this could somehow be injected into the water system… … sigh … … we need all the help we can get is how it’s looking to me…

        many thanks for those posters who monitor the TV debates & interviews and report here, also much appreciated

      • Annie Robbins
        January 14, 2012, 11:47 am

        jerome,

        I’ve publicly apologized to Mondoweissers for my (private) email blast to her a few days ago, and I’ll take this opportunity to apologize directly to her.

        was that your apology “directly to me”? addressing me as her?

        That out of the way

        generous of you to place four words between your ‘apology’ and your new complaint. thank you but i’m not interested in further engagement. ‘apology’ accepted, peace be with you.

        ciao

      • Annie Robbins
        January 14, 2012, 11:50 am

        thanks brenda.

      • Jeffrey Blankfort
        January 14, 2012, 2:57 pm

        Notice how Witty and eeek have cleverly shifted the thrust of the article away from the subject, namely, that Baer, like a number of former CIA analysts and agents who have served in the Middle East, have had Israel’s number for some time and are in agreement that it is Israel and their “lobby” in the US is driving for an armed confrontation with Iran. They may disagree on other issues but they are united on that one.

        I am, frankly, against the US armed intervention anywhere, but I would make an exception in this case, happily seconding Zbigniew Brzezinski’s suggestion a year or so ago that Israel should be told that any of its aircraft heading toward Iran would be shot down by the US. That’s the kind if “national security advice” I could get behind. I wouldn’t object to them doing the same to any Israeli plane that entered Lebanese or Gaza air space but I guess that’s asking for too much.

      • Duscany
        January 14, 2012, 3:18 pm

        “Thank you for at last admitting you are not Jewish.”

        When you become an American, eee, it is expected that you give up former tribal loyalties and consciously put American first.

      • Jeffrey Blankfort
        January 14, 2012, 3:40 pm

        I should have added that Zbiggy and I are only dreaming. The reason that, at least at the moment, the US is unable to act militarily against Israel, even if the president and the Pentagon believed it would be in its and the world’s best interests (such as keeping the US and the world out another major war) is because its hold over the US Congress is impregnable and that pack of traitors would start screaming immediately and in unison. It’s hold and that of its agents over the mainstream media, while strong ,is somewhat less so, otherwise we would not have heard Robert Baer say what he did to Chris Matthews. We should watch for the fallout from that, however. It may be some time before we see and hear Baer again and expect Dore Gold, Daniel Pipes, Kenneth Pollack, or Martin Indyk to be Matthews’ guest in the very, very near future. Indyk is the most likely, given his mezmerizing Australian accent.

      • Citizen
        January 14, 2012, 9:09 pm

        eee, what gives you the foolish notion all Jews are Israelis and all Israelis are Jews? Or that you must never criticize Israel or else you’re not a real Jew?

      • yourstruly
        January 15, 2012, 1:46 am

        don’t know why phil says israelis ain’t his people, but they ain’t mine because israel’s brutal occupation of palestine puts me, my loved ones and everyone else in the world at risk, with the zionist entity’s lethal treatment of palestinians being what stokes the hatred/fear that underlies all the violent messianic movements in the mideast as well as what’s bringing the world ever closer to wwiii/doomsday.

    • Donald
      January 13, 2012, 10:30 am

      “I sometimes wonder where Phil is coming from with this stuff…”

      What a bizarre thing to say. Phil is calling our attention to this and you insult him for it?

      “If someone has an idea for how to deal with Israel as it is, other than an explicit threat to use force,”

      I don’t understand this kind of hyperbole. Why do so many people think it’s cool to threaten war?

      We could tell Israel that if they want to start a war with Iran they are completely on their own. We could threaten sanctions, etc…. That’s assuming we had the US government on our side. As it happens, Mondoweiss as a blog has a rather piddling military capability, so threats from us probably won’t be taken too seriously.

      • James North
        January 13, 2012, 10:49 am

        Richard Witty said, ‘Donald: You grossly underestimate the power of Mondoweiss. This website, which is dominated by “dissent” and “solidarity,” is the single greatest factor that frightens Israelis and prevents them from negotiating with Palestinians. Why do you think I spend hours here, day and night, policing the site, and warning Phil and others that they jeopardize peace every time they make incendiary, hurtful statements like suggesting that Israeli settler/colonists are in the West Bank illegally? Why do you think I haven’t had the time to post on my own Israel blog since last September? I’m standing here, with my thumb in the dike, nearing 12,000 comments, doing by far the most important thing I can.’

      • eljay
        January 13, 2012, 10:53 am

        >> JN: Richard Witty said, ‘Donald: You grossly underestimate the power of Mondoweiss. … ‘

        James, Donald was replying to a post by Dan Crowther, so unless Dan is the new RW – an honour I suspect he’d rather not have bestowed upon him – you may want to consider amending or deleting your latest translation, amusing though it is. :-)

      • Donald
        January 13, 2012, 11:07 am

        Actually, I was criticizing Dan’s gratuitous insult of Phil and not Richard, though certainly your description of Richard’s attitude seems accurate.
        It’s in the wrong spot though.

      • James North
        January 13, 2012, 11:20 am

        Richard Witty said, ‘Donald: I’m not responding to Dan Crowther. I was objecting to this line of yours:

        As it happens, Mondoweiss as a blog has a rather piddling military capability, so threats from us probably won’t be taken too seriously.

        ‘I’m pointing out, as I do regularly, that although Mondoweiss may not have a military capability, the incendiary language here from “dissent” and “solidarity” is a key factor that promotes fear among Israelis, and prevents them from negotiating. Don’t underestimate the power of Mondoweiss. I don’t, which is why I’m here nearly 24 hours a day, ignoring my own blog for months now, countering Phil, Adam and the other threats to peace who appear here.’

      • eljay
        January 13, 2012, 11:25 am

        >> JN: Richard Witty said, ‘Donald: I’m not responding to Dan Crowther. ‘

        Wow, sometimes you’re even as cryptic as the real McCoy! Nicely done! ;-)

      • Donald
        January 13, 2012, 12:02 pm

        >> JN: Richard Witty said, ‘Donald: I’m not responding to Dan Crowther. ‘

        “Wow, sometimes you’re even as cryptic as the real McCoy! Nicely done! ;-)”

        That was pretty funny.

      • yourstruly
        January 15, 2012, 2:08 am

        rw, not just israeli settler/colonists in the west bank, but those in any part of occupied palestine are there illegally.

      • Dan Crowther
        January 13, 2012, 11:11 am

        Donald ( and everyone )

        I agree my comment was “bizarre” – I dont think its cool to threaten war, at all. I do understand that’s basically what I said, I take responsibility for it, my bad.

        But again, here we are looking down the possibility of massive destruction, death etc – and here I am still on the IRR (inactive reserve roster) for the Marines, do I have to move to Canada? Become a wanted man?

        I admit, Im coming at this from a different POV. Probably too emotionally invested etc.

        I didnt mean to insult Phil.

      • marc b.
        January 13, 2012, 11:41 am

        donald, weiss does great work here. but i don’t think it is unfair of anyone to ask such questions given his own acknowledged weaknesses/prejudices. as for dan’s ‘insulting’ tone, i wouldn’t have asked the question in that way, in this context, but it’s up to weiss to be offended or not. he’s a big boy. i’m sure he’s shrugged off worse.

        the suggestion of military action against israel isn’t productive, i agree. it would never be, and shouldn’t, be an option. american politicians acting as if we had separate, divergent foreign policy interests from israel would probably be enough to fix the problem. but, again, and not to beat a dead horse, when weiss responds as if the war with iran meme is an ‘israeli’ issue, that’s not quite right either, is it?

        and using the edit function, reading back over the exchange, it was a bit confusing what the whole point of it was. but that may be my personal problem, not having to do with anything said by other commenters.

      • Donald
        January 13, 2012, 11:57 am

        “But again, here we are looking down the possibility of massive destruction, death etc – and here I am still on the IRR (inactive reserve roster) for the Marines, do I have to move to Canada? Become a wanted man?

        I admit, Im coming at this from a different POV. Probably too emotionally invested etc.”

        Well, you’ve got a point there. If it is true that Israel is dragging us into a war with Iran (and even the MSM seems to be granting that it is trying) and it actually happens, they are playing with fire as far as American attitudes are concerned. I could get a little intemperate myself if it happens. I wouldn’t favor war, but I would favor telling them to have a great time handling all their self-generated problems without any help from us.

      • Dan Crowther
        January 13, 2012, 11:57 am

        As I re-read the post, and some of the comments – I have to say, I do disagree with the notion that an Israeli effort to – lets be honest with ourselves here- get Americans killed does not rise to the level of warranting – at least the threat of- military retaliation on Israel.

      • Donald
        January 13, 2012, 12:00 pm

        Marc b–

        I’ve questioned Phil myself sometimes, and even gotten a little snide. (Which I probably shouldn’t have). But anyway, Dan responded above.

      • Avi_G.
        January 14, 2012, 12:56 am

        marc b. says:
        January 13, 2012 at 11:41 am

        donald, weiss does great work here. but i don’t think it is unfair of anyone to ask such questions given his own acknowledged weaknesses/prejudices. as for dan’s ‘insulting’ tone, i wouldn’t have asked the question in that way, in this context, but it’s up to weiss to be offended or not. he’s a big boy. i’m sure he’s shrugged off worse.

        I don’t understand this. Dan asked a simple question to which Phil responded. So why is this being treated as though Dan has committed a cardinal sin?

        And I didn’t know that Phil hired Donald to be the arbiter of fair conduct on Mondoweiss. Did he? It sure seems that way.

        Incidentally, anyone who starts a website like this knows very well that it will draw some criticism from time to time. Some of it may be fair, some unfair, some warranted, some unwarranted. But, the bottom line is that Dan has a right to ask that question and Phil has a right to respond, ignore or ban.

        I don’t see how “offensive” and “appropriate” factors into that, anyway. And it’s a symbiotic relationship. Phil needs commenters for Mondoweiss to function and commenters may need an outlet to voice their opinions. It’s not like anyone is doing anyone a favor here.

        But who knows, perhaps Slater would like to jump in and lecture a few people or demand they apologize to others.

      • Donald
        January 14, 2012, 12:06 pm

        “I don’t understand this. Dan asked a simple question to which Phil responded. So why is this being treated as though Dan has committed a cardinal sin?

        And I didn’t know that Phil hired Donald to be the arbiter of fair conduct on Mondoweiss. Did he? It sure seems that way.”

        Speaking of that, Avi, in view of this comment of yours below, referring to the very same comment I complained about–

        “I’m not sure I understand how or why you expected Phil to bring into the discussion the issue of an American response to Israel’s actions. It wasn’t the topic of this article.

        I just don’t see the relevance. ”

        I was wondering if Phil pays you to be the relevance arbiter. What’s he paying you? I’m gonna be really ticked if it’s more than he’s paying me.

      • yourstruly
        January 15, 2012, 2:13 am

        not getting emotional at the prospect of a war that could end all life on earth? what’s that, absolute zero?

    • dumvitaestspesest
      January 13, 2012, 10:49 am

      Dan,
      If you happen to have a direct line to G-d ,then maybe you can call and ask for His advice/opinion in the matter of : “what to do with the fact that His Chosen Nation is mongering for another bloody war”.
      Since you probably don’t have that, then informing the public, sharing info, engaging in honest discussions is one of the ways to beat up MSM brainwashing propaganda. Believe me, there are many, many,many people, who still do not know what is really going on. They need to , have to start opening their eyes.

    • Avi_G.
      January 13, 2012, 11:15 am

      Dan,

      I’m not sure I understand how or why you expected Phil to bring into the discussion the issue of an American response to Israel’s actions. It wasn’t the topic of this article.

      I just don’t see the relevance. I mean, it’s not like Phil was saying that the US should let Israel be. He didn’t even bring up that angle.

      So I’m perplexed.

      Edit: Nevermind. I’ve just noticed your response above.

    • pabelmont
      January 13, 2012, 11:17 am

      It is not, anyhow, a matter of dealing with the Israelis. It is a matter of dealing with AIPAC and the AIPAC-controlled-Congress. Obama cannot go against ANY of the BIGs (not BIG-OIL, BIG-BANKs, BIG-PHARMA [see ObamaCare on this], BIG-HEALTHINS [ditto], BIG-ZION (aka AIPAC) if he wants the money to keep coming to his re-election campaign AND wants a cooperative Congress.

      Imagine Obama saying, publicly: “The USA will not go to war with Iran because of any reasonable step Iran takes as a response to Israeli provocation. If Israel wants war, it will be Israel’s war, not America’s. I would only ask that Iran coordinate with me before any such responsive act.” (He’s said something like this to Israel w.r.t. attacks on Iran and we must presume either that it simply doesn’t work — they ignore him — or that he gave green light for all the murders, for Stuxnet, etc.)

      Anyhow, don’t hold your breath: AIPAC is listening to Obama’s public statements. And if Obama does NOT make it clear that Israel does not speak for the USA, then he’d be held anti-Israel in the event that Israel attacks Iran or provokes Iran to a large response in, say, August, when election money may still be needed.

      • yourstruly
        January 15, 2012, 2:29 am

        assuming ron paul’s popularity has to do with his antiwar position, president obama should be able to capture a significant portion of that vote by toning down his war rhetoric and calling for real (not fake) negotiations with iran. as for the israel lobby, all obama need do is allude to the fact that there are israel-firsters who hurt u.s. interests and that’ll put a lid on them. it’s worked before, albeit, temporarily, the last time being a year or so ago when general david petreaus (among others) spoke about israel’s intransigence vis-a-vis peace negotiations endangering u.s. troops in afghanistan as well as posing a threat to national security. yes, the ai recouped, but only because its assailants (the good general again, as well as others) backed off. had they persevered, there’d be for rent signs today outside il offices.

    • LeaNder
      January 13, 2012, 11:34 am

      I sometimes wonder where Phil is coming from with this stuff…..

      Oh, I see, Dan you joined Richard Witty and maybe others I didn’t pay attention to.

      • Dan Crowther
        January 13, 2012, 2:54 pm

        ouch! ha. not at all

    • lysias
      January 13, 2012, 11:44 am

      No need to use force against Israel. Threatening to cut off aid and stop vetoing UN resolutions (and then actually doing it if Israel goes ahead and continues these assassinations) ought to be enough to make Israel see reason.

    • American
      January 13, 2012, 12:05 pm

      If someone has an idea for how to deal with Israel as it is, other than an explicit threat to use force, please let me know….”…Dan

      Ideally:..by steps

      Cut off US money.
      Let it be stated, not just to Israel but publicly, to the international and ME community, the US will not support any aggression or illegal confiscation of resources or property initiated by Israel…on anyone including Palestine.
      Stop US UNSC vetoes.
      Put trade sanctions on Israel

      That should do it. But if it didn’t do it, and they are delusional enough to believe they can continue their current path, then US military intervention is warranted. If I were an Israeli withdrawing of US support would be enough to put the mother of all fears in me. Just how delusional the zionist government of Israel really is is what disturbs me. Recently we had Slater, as some other zionist have claimed here before, say that it would be a political impossibility the US would ever intervene in Israel and that Israel would be some kind of military match for the US. Both of these beliefs are very naive. Anyone of a certain age or familiar with history has seen countries politically swing from one extreme to another for one thing, meaning no politic policy of any country should ever be taken for granted or as written in stone by anyone.
      I am sure the Israeli government knows that the US could take out Israel with one Boomer precision ballistic missile submarine that is undetectable and would render the Israeli so called Sampson option and nukes irrelevant. But the worry is that they don’t think the US would ever go that far against Jews no matter what they do and therefore push us and/or the world to the point of military force because they ignored all warnings.
      As I have said numerous times, the zionist don’t fear consequences and people of abnormal hubris who don’t, usually push others into having to inflict them.

      • lysias
        January 13, 2012, 12:43 pm

        If the Iranians can misdirect a U.S. drone, I wonder if they can also misdirect incoming missiles.

      • Donald
        January 13, 2012, 12:55 pm

        “I am sure the Israeli government knows that the US could take out Israel with one Boomer precision ballistic missile submarine that is undetectable and would render the Israeli so called Sampson option and nukes irrelevant. But the worry is that they don’t think the US would ever go that far against Jews no matter what they do and therefore push us and/or the world to the point of military force because they ignored all warnings.
        As I have said numerous times, the zionist don’t fear consequences and people of abnormal hubris who don’t, usually push others into having to inflict them.”

        I just deleted a few paragraphs explaining how completely and utterly insane this is on every conceivable level. I mean, if I did that it would imply that others couldn’t see it for themselves, which is a really depressing thought.

      • American
        January 13, 2012, 4:02 pm

        Donald,

        If you think what I said is inconceivable, then I can only say again that it is naive to think so.
        It would be inconceivable to think the US would, ‘as a first choice’ use military on Israel…(and should be to do so on anyone). And to assume we would use anything nuclear. Frankly, it would never come to that because we do have the power to destroy Israel completely and they know that.
        If we ever had to take action against Israel it would be conventional. And for all their hype and bravado I don’t think they would risk that.
        But no, nothing is inconceivable……that’s a fool’s delusion.
        No one in their right mind though we would drop a atomic bomb on a million+ Japanese civilians either…but we did…….just to shorten the war and save causalities.

      • Donald
        January 13, 2012, 4:47 pm

        American, lots of things are conceivable. It’s conceivable we might drop nuclear weapons on an American city. I saw that in “Independence Day”, I think. A lot of pesky extra-terrestrials with xenocidal attitudes towards humans were sitting on top of our major cities. And it also happened in “Fail-Safe”, or one of those classic Cold War movies about nuclear war.

        So yeah, anything is possible. Maybe we’ll get really miffed and send one of our ballistic missile subs to “take out” Israel, incidentally committing genocide against the Israelis, the Palestinians and anyone downwind (probably Jordan, I’m guessing). We will then be the pariahs of the world and remembered in the same breath with Adolph Hitler and Joseph Stalin. Could it happen? Yeah, sure. What I worry about is the humanitarian pretext this would give to some invading aliens.

      • yourstruly
        January 15, 2012, 2:35 am

        by the time this postulated showdown between the u.s. and israel occurred, how many jewish israelis would be left in the zionist entity? enough to resist a u.s. led takeover?

    • Duscany
      January 14, 2012, 3:08 pm

      “The rational response to the Israeli’s doing this (trying to rope the US into war, and fight on their behalf) would be – tell Tel Aviv they risk US military retaliation on Israel.”

      It may be rational but in the real world it’s also totally impossible. The US would never threaten Israel militarily. We wouldn’t even hint at a whiff of a trace of that. Any Democratic president who did that would doom his party to minority status for the next 20 years.

      Herbert Walker Bush only threatened to delay loan guarantees to resettle Russian Jews for a few months and that alone cost him a second term. The most we would ever do to Israel is to threaten to slow down the annual rate of increase in our military and financial support, which might have some effect actually.

      • yourstruly
        January 15, 2012, 2:38 am

        that didn’t cost him the election, an economic downturn did.

  3. Real Jew
    January 13, 2012, 10:36 am

    To Dan’s comment, I disagree that the rational response to Israel’s warmongering is to threaten Israel with “military retaliation”. Obviously there are many more appropriate diplomatic steps to take to show the Israelis how dangerous their behavior is to the US. For instance, suspending all foreign/military aid to Israel until they start behaving responsibly, or support Palestinian statehood at the UN.

    • Bandolero
      January 13, 2012, 11:16 am

      A fine response would be a US draft resolution in the UN SC for an international investigation and an international special tribunal into that series of acts of terror in Iran, just like the UN SC acted after the murder of Hariri in Lebanon. I guess if Obama went down that way, Israel would quickly see where such acts of terror lead to.

      But the fact that Obama does not take any action against Israel makes me wonder if Obama is maybe playing on Israels side trying to persuade the US public to go to war with Iran.

    • Matthew Graber
      January 13, 2012, 11:19 am

      The thing that makes me most disappointed in all of this is Iran’s crackdown on civilians in 2009 following the stolen elections. If Iran hadn’t adopted militarism as the means of policing its own people, then I doubt that they would have adopted militarism as the means to finding justice for Palestinians (vis-a-vis Hezbollah).

      • Shingo
        January 13, 2012, 7:57 pm

        The thing that makes me most disappointed in all of this is Iran’s crackdown on civilians in 2009 following the stolen elections.

        I doubt that. First of all, the elections weren’t stolen, the incumbent party won legitimately, as prior polls had indicted.

        Secondly, I doubt you have a probem with crackdowns on civilians, especially seeing how ISrael murdered 20 peaceful protesters during he Nakba Day demomnstrations and murdered 1,400 Palestinians needlessly during the Cast Lead massacre.

        If Iran hadn’t adopted militarism as the means of policing its own people, then I doubt that they would have adopted militarism as the means to finding justice for Palestinians (vis-a-vis Hezbollah).

        It’s astounding that you would bother to post such garbage on this forum. The occupation was 12 years ols by the time the IRanian Reoluton took place and the ongoing ethnic cleasing of Palestine was 30 years old, so you can’t blame Iran, let alone Hezbollah, which didn’t even come into existence until 1983, when Israel ivaded and occupied Lebanon on false pretenses.

        With regard to the justice for Palestinians, Israel had nearly 40 years to implement it and Hezbollah has ever posed a threat or a rpoadbloack to addressign thsi issue.

    • seanmcbride
      January 13, 2012, 7:42 pm

      The United States and Europe in close coordination could suspend all financial, political and military aid to Israel. That would be a first step. I doubt that other steps would be required, but they are certainly available.

    • yourstruly
      January 15, 2012, 2:44 am

      a naval blockade would do it. israel wouldn’t dare try breaking it. oh, it might threaten to, but the stampede of israeli trying to flee the entity would expose the threat to be empty.

  4. Avi_G.
    January 13, 2012, 10:40 am

    This is a minor detail, but rest assured, it does figure into Tel-Aviv’s political calculations. The murder comes mere days after the United States rescued the crew of an Iranian fishing vessel, an act for which Iran was thankful and characterized as a humanitarian gesture.

    For Israel, any member of a nation that is considered to be an enemy is fair game. One sees that in Israel’s treatment of the Palestinian minority in Israel where anyone traveling is considered a security threat by virtue of his/her ethnicity, one can see that in the Israeli navy’s treatment of Gaza’s fishermen and in the treatment to which Palestinians are subjected when they seek medical services and are pressured to work as informants for the Shabak.

    When the US rescued those Iranian fishermen, Israel saw that as the last straw. Those Americans are not serious about this anti-Iran business. We need to show them what expectations WE have. And so the assassination was green-lighted.

    • marc b.
      January 13, 2012, 11:45 am

      i hadn’t seen that story, avi. as i said to annie elsewhere, i probably should be spending more time following the MSM as irritated as it gets me.

      • Avi_G.
        January 14, 2012, 12:58 am

        i probably should be spending more time following the MSM as irritated as it gets me.

        In small doses, right?

      • yourstruly
        January 15, 2012, 2:46 am

        generally the truth is the opposite of what msma serves up

  5. atime forpeace
    January 13, 2012, 11:04 am

    Thanks Phil for being on top of this issue, and more importantly to me thanks for taking the stance that you are an American first and foremost, this seems to be the stumblingblock for many of your fellow lansmen.

    can you say alleluyah amen cause the christian zionists will be the last bastion of support for the neocons.

  6. dahoit
    January 13, 2012, 11:24 am

    Well,it sure don’t hurt Dr.Pauls campaign,neh?

  7. Richard Witty
    January 13, 2012, 11:50 am

    Who is “we”, relative to Phil’s outburst.

    Jews, American AND Israeli, are part of my understanding of “we”.

    Hippies are part of my understanding of “we”.

    Moralists are part of my understanding of “we”.

    Advocates for live and let live are part of my understanding of “we”.

    Residents of the Pioneer Valley are part of my understanding of “we”.

    Americans are as well, but less so than the above for me. I vote, pay my taxes, comment on policies, but I still feel “different” in some ways. I feel “different” from all groups as well. Part of, different, and identifying all at the same time.

    You folks? What are you part of, what is it that you are, who is your primary “we”, honestly?

    On the question of topic drift. Is Phil guilty of “threadjacking”?

    Thank you Annie for trying to get the discussion back to the article.

    • James North
      January 13, 2012, 12:04 pm

      Richard Witty said, ‘Palestinians and Arabs are not part of my understanding of “we.”‘

    • American
      January 13, 2012, 12:42 pm

      “but I still feel “different” in some ways. I feel “different” from all groups as well. ”

      Richard you once said you had a terrible fear of blacks and gentiles. Doesn’t that indicate to you that you have some kind of problem? You should work on that before attempting to comment on issues like Israel and Palestine because your obviously irrational fears are probably why a lot of what you say doesn’t make sense.

      • Richard Witty
        January 13, 2012, 1:13 pm

        ‘a terrible fear of blacks and gentiles’.

        Wierd. If I said that, I said it in relation to transitions and residual feelings that I remembered relative to relationships with close friends, what I learned in developing those relationships.

        North,
        There were quite a few in my “we”‘s, those that ‘conspired’ to live an let live among them. In my essay a year ago on “who is a Jew?” I named all that conspire to humanize the other as part of the ‘brit’, though I wouldn’t cause them any distress by saying so in those terms outwardly.

        Are you part of that ‘brit’, that conspiracy?

    • lyn117
      January 14, 2012, 7:12 pm

      I don’t actually exclude any human being from my concept of “we.” Sometimes, I include animals. Elephants or whales or great apes have at least some sentience, and certainly many mammals have emotions we can recognize, if we ourselves are capable of such.

      That being said, when I say “we human rights advocates,” “we who believe in equality under law,” “we who believe in fairness and justice,” “we who are capable of understanding and applying logic,” “we who abhor killing or oppression of people because of their ethnic group,” “we who are against racism in any form,” or “we who abhor perversion of language”, I sadly and specifically have to exclude virtually every zionist and RW.

      • Antidote
        January 14, 2012, 7:56 pm

        “I don’t actually exclude any human being from my concept of “we.” Sometimes, I include animals”

        Standing ovation, but: why “sometimes”? Furthermore, I would definitely include “virtually every zionist and RW”

    • yourstruly
      January 15, 2012, 2:49 am

      we, as in all living beings

      • lyn117
        January 15, 2012, 3:00 pm

        Yes, and I include plants in “we, as in all living beings.” Having certain rights, like the right not to suffer genocide, except for maybe certain harmful bacteria. Bacteria mutate so quickly it might be impossible to define genocide against a bacteria anyway. Clearly, killing all the blue whales or polar bears would be genocide.

        I absolutely include every zionist and RW in “we, human beings,” I also have to Adolph Hitler.

        Not sure where to place viruses. I’m not an animist either. OK, I didn’t really mean to get goofy about this.

  8. Kathleen
    January 13, 2012, 12:20 pm

    This was a crack last night. Although Chris has had Baer on before on other foreign policy issues. Go on over to Hardball and let Chris know you noticed folks. Keep hammering as well as at the other MSNBC blogs..Rachel, Lawrence Etc Ask him to have Seymour Hersh and the Leveretts on. Seems like the neo cons have taken Scott Ritter out of the Target Iran game totally by going after his sounds like seedy private life.

    Today on the Diane Rehm show Diane made a really ignorant statement about the latest Iaea report on Iran. Will wait for the transcript to get her exact words

  9. Kathleen
    January 13, 2012, 12:27 pm

    And if Matthews really had in chutzpah/nerve he would have Flynt and Hillary Mann Leverett on ..Seymour Hersh who has been writing about Israel and US special forces on the ground in Iran for years now. Chris likes to spin that he really asked tough questions before the invasion of Iran but he did not. He would bat Bill Kristols, Frums and Gaffneys WMD claims around like a cat playing with a mouse before the cat kills the mouse. But Chris Matthews would never go for the kill just keep lightly swatting the WMD lies. Never really asking the tough questions. Not ever having Scott Ritter, El Baradei, Ray McGovern, Brzinski and others who were questioning the validity of the intelligence.

    Will Chris and his other MSNBC colleagues ask the tough questions about the push for a military strike on Iran. Will they have guest on who can really inform the public like Baer…Leveretts…Hersh…McGovern others? Keep pushing

    • MRW
      January 13, 2012, 2:54 pm

      Matthews was concerned last night that we’re going to war. You could see it on his face. Iran has a huge military. Their troops are not tired, and they are highly disciplined.

      • American
        January 13, 2012, 4:13 pm

        I don’t think that is the worse of it. ‘If” anything happens with Iran rest assured Russia will be involved one way or another, covertly or overtly. Putin will turn it to their advantage. Russia has said stronger than this before, the US should listen.

        link to bbc.co.uk

        Iranian Nuclear Expert buried as Russia warns on sanctions

  10. Kathleen
    January 13, 2012, 12:40 pm

    Phil you are also right about Matthews practicing “innocense” or stupidity (and the guy is not stupid) so not sure what that was. Taking a risk while protecting his job. Engel sure would not go far as Baer. And Engel along with Rachel Maddow have participated in the bad bad bad IRan dance.

    Matthews really stuck out his neck here
    “Matthews: How can the U.S. not see this as adversarial by Israel to try and hook us into a war? If that’s seen to manipulate that into a war we don’t want to get into, how can we not see that as from an ally, hostile? … Bob, you’re saying that Israel is trying to provoke the Iranians into attacking.”

  11. seafoid
    January 13, 2012, 12:40 pm

    Israel is hell bent on subduing every nation in the region.
    The cost to Israeli society in lost potential is massive.

    I wonder how long they can pull it off for

  12. Kathleen
    January 13, 2012, 12:46 pm

    Have not listened yet…but over at RACE FOR IRAN
    FLYNT LEVERETT DEBATES OBAMA’S IRAN POLICY WITH DENNIS ROSS

    Today, Flynt appeared on Public Radio International’s To The Point, hosted by Warren Olney, to discuss U.S.-Iranian tensions. The other guests on the segment, which starts 7:33 into the program, click here to listen,were Dennis Ross, recently separated from the Obama Administration, Barbara Slavin, and Trita Parsi of the National Iranian American Council. Flynt’s major themes were that the Obama Administration was never serious about strategically-grounded rapprochement with the Islamic Republic, that it was fundamentally duplicitous in its approach to the Tehran Declaration, and that is now seems divided between those who believe a U.S.-Iranian military confrontation is inevitable and those who support regime change—even if they are not yet prepared to say so publicly—as the alternative to (overt) war against Iran.

    –Flynt Leverett and Hillary Mann Leverett

    • Kathleen
      January 13, 2012, 1:10 pm

      Flynt really rips into the Obama administration ” no one in the administration who is really talking seriously about diplomacy with Iran”

      • Kathleen
        January 13, 2012, 1:33 pm

        Ross punches Flynt and calls him “an apologist for Iran”
        It is Ross who supports and apologizes for Israel no matter what they do…no matter how many international agreements and Un resolutions that they are in violation of.

        Ross pulls out the Holocaust card “face another Holocaust” when it is Israel and the I lobby in the US congress who has daily threatened Iran.

        Oh yeah Barbara Slavin nails Ross on his choice to use inflammatory language about Iran. She brings up how former heads of Israeli intelligence have said that an attack on Iran would be a huge mistake.

        Flynt and Slavin take Ross out

  13. Kathleen
    January 13, 2012, 12:54 pm

    Huff Po has this one up on their front page. But no room for comments
    False Flag
    A series of CIA memos describes how Israeli Mossad agents posed as American spies to recruit members of the terrorist organization Jundallah to fight their covert war against Iran.
    BY MARK PERRY | JANUARY 13, 2012

    • NorthOfFortyNine
      January 13, 2012, 2:07 pm

      Kathleen — here is the link to the Mossad flase flag story — and it is in Foreign Policy Magazine, hardly a fringe publication: link to foreignpolicy.com

      Buried deep in the archives of America’s intelligence services are a series of memos, written during the last years of President George W. Bush’s administration, that describe how Israeli Mossad officers recruited operatives belonging to the terrorist group Jundallah by passing themselves off as American agents. According to two U.S. intelligence officials, the Israelis, flush with American dollars and toting U.S. passports, posed as CIA officers in recruiting Jundallah operatives — what is commonly referred to as a “false flag” operation.

      This should be read. -N “da craaaazy conspriacy theorist” 49.

      • NorthOfFortyNine
        January 13, 2012, 2:14 pm

        Note to Phil/Adam/Annie — this FP story should get bumped to the front page. I found it via Rosenberg’s twitter feed. In conjunction with recent events in Iran, it is hugely important that this piece saw the light of day. Someone is pissed at the Israel in Publishing World. It speaks very powerfully to a cleavage plane in US-Israeli relations. In Foreign Policy no less.-N49.

      • NorthOfFortyNine
        January 13, 2012, 2:26 pm

        Yikes! Check out this passage:

        What has become crystal clear, however, is the level of anger among senior intelligence officials about Israel’s actions. “This was stupid and dangerous,” the intelligence official who first told me about the operation said. “Israel is supposed to be working with us, not against us. If they want to shed blood, it would help a lot if it was their blood and not ours. You know, they’re supposed to be a strategic asset. Well, guess what? There are a lot of people now, important people, who just don’t think that’s true.” [emph added]

      • Justice Please
        January 13, 2012, 2:45 pm

        I second it. Bump to the top. It’s a mainstream media source detailing how there truly are false-flag attacks, especially from Israel, famous for its Lavon Affair.

      • Justice Please
        January 13, 2012, 2:50 pm

        The leak leading to the FP article might well be from elements withing the US military and intelligence, who are rightly enraged by the Israelis trying to get Americans and Iranians to fight each other. When will the general population take the next step and stop this madness?

      • MRW
        January 13, 2012, 3:23 pm

        There will be more leaks, JP. The US military is not behind this.

      • NorthOfFortyNine
        January 13, 2012, 4:16 pm

        More over at the FP blog:

        This has been an exceedingly weird week with respect to the escalating dispute between Iran and countries not thrilled with Iran’s nuclear program. On the one hand, you have the United States going to great lengths to widen and deepen the sanctions regime against Iran and deter Iran from trying to close the Straits of Hormuz. On the other hand, you have U.S. officials contradicting themselves and backtracking from statements made to the Washington Post over the precise purpose of the sanctions. On the third hand, you have signals that Turkey is brokering another round of negotiations between Iran and the P5 + 1.

        And then, in the last hand, you have… Israel. Some weird s**t has been going down. Following the apparent assassination of an Iranian nuclear scientist, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton took great pains to “categorically deny” U.S. involvment. In a New York Times front-pager, U.S. officials were even more explicit:

        [emph added]

        link to drezner.foreignpolicy.com

    • Justice Please
      January 13, 2012, 2:19 pm

      Kathleen, wanted to mention this story also. Thanks!
      Here’s a link to Foreign Policy:
      link to foreignpolicy.com

      Do you get it now, Americans? Paranoid Jewish Zionists in Israel want YOUR kids to die in a war against Iran. And several people in high positions in the US help them, some of them Jewish, some not. How many body bags do you want to see until you stop the war criminals, arrest, try, and sentence them?

      The few politicians who are outraged by this, including Ron Paul, get heckled by your corporate media. You have few friends left in politics and media. If you want your country back, you must re-conquer it.

      • Donald
        January 13, 2012, 4:19 pm

        I just read that Foreign Policy piece. That’s front page material if they can get those same CIA people to talk to the NYT (assuming they’d print it).

      • lysias
        January 13, 2012, 5:00 pm

        NPR is apparently reporting this story. At least, it’s on their Web site. Foreign Policy: Israeli Spies Claim To Be American.

  14. marc b.
    January 13, 2012, 1:05 pm

    The first is that there is absolutely not enough evidence to conclude Israel was behind this. Even Baer admits it is total speculation.

    eeee, little buddy, really how do you cram so much contradiction and poor logic into 20 words or so? there is a difference between not enough evidence to conclude and total speculation, right? and doesn’t baer start his commentary by stating that this is ‘undoubtedly the work of the israelis’? and doesn’t he then go on to state that israeli intelligence has, and i paraphrase, the means, motive, and opportunity to conduct such operations? that’s where any investigation would begin. do you deny that the israelis have a strong motive to murder iranian scientists working on nuclear projects? do you deny that israeli intelligence has the means to carry out such operations? do you deny that israeli spokepersons have not implicitly taken credit for such attacks? do you deny that this latest murder is part of a pattern of conduct that occurs in the context of israeli claims that an iranian nuclear program is an existential threat to israel, and more broadly, jews everywhere? in short, are you effing stupid?

    • James North
      January 13, 2012, 1:47 pm

      Cui bono?

    • MRW
      January 13, 2012, 2:49 pm

      eee,

      Let’s be clear here. If we get into a war with Iran because Israel provokes it, wants it, threatens it–you name it, doesn’t matter what the reason is or the lookatthis history you drag up–you can count on one thing: anti-semitism in this country. Got it?

      You can take it to the bank. America’s support for Israel is 3000 miles wide and a millimeter deep.

    • Dan Crowther
      January 13, 2012, 2:55 pm

      Is eee Eli Lake?

    • marc b.
      January 13, 2012, 3:19 pm

      eeee, really, there is only so much of you i can take in a day. please feel free to respond or not, but you can jump to the conclusion that i will not be responding to any more of your nonsense on this thread.

      1. no one has convicted israel of this act, nor will an international investigation be conducted, which is what would be required. and i feel quite confident that if photographs were shown of tzipi livni planting the bomb that you would tie yourself into logical pretzels to explain that we weren’t seeing what is before our eyes.
      2. the only conclusion that i have jumped to is that the state of israel is on a very short list of prime beneficiaries of this assassination. (why on earth iran would have to blow up a ‘double agent’ when they could track that agent and exploit their discovery, or put him on trial to embarass israel and the US is beyond me. it’s not as if the iranians have any qualms about putting people to death the old fashioned way.)
      3. ‘physical’ evidence is not the only type of evidence utilized in an investigation or prosecution, e.g. see the compromised harari investigation which you so love.
      4. all my ‘irrelevant questions’ are the foundation for any criminal investigation.
      5. the bombing in argentina has f@ck all to do with this case, but you just can’t help associating iran with the killing of jews, and simultaneously excusing/minimizing the brutal death of an iranian.
      6. if you want to play ‘spanish inquisition’, squeezing admissions out of people as to the bona fides of their jewishness, or the guilt of iranians for the murder of jews, i’m sure they could use a razor intellect like yours in the IDF or better yet mossad.

    • MRW
      January 13, 2012, 3:27 pm

      eee, you say you spent 10 years in the IDF? And this is how you think as a result?

    • Kathleen
      January 13, 2012, 3:40 pm

      Baer said nothing about speculation

    • Shingo
      January 13, 2012, 7:45 pm

      All Israel can provoke is an attack against itself.

      That hasn’t stopped Israel from trying ie Lavon Affair, USS Liberty.

      If the Iranians attack the US, it is not Israel’s fault whatsoever.

      I take it you agree that Israeli attacks on Hamad and Sputhern Lebsnon were not Iean’s fault either.

      Right eee?

    • Jerome Slater
      January 14, 2012, 12:26 pm

      eee” “All Israel can provoke is an attack against itself. If the Iranians attack the US, it is not Israel’s fault whatsoever. Do you really think that if the Iranians attack a US ship and kill American soldiers people will blame Israel? ….There is no reason for them to attack Americans because of what Israel does.”

      Of course there is (although I doubt they will, given the certain consequences). The U.S. has backed Israel more or less unconditionally, everyone knows that there is very close US-Israeli coordination about what to do about the Iranian nuclear program, and Obama and other high officials have repeatedly said that “we” will not allow the Iranians to get nuclear weapons. Therefore, if Israel attacks Iran, the U.S. will get a good part of the blame, and rightly so.

      On the other hand, suppose the U.S. told Israel in no uncertain terms that we disapprove of a military attack, and if you go ahead we will end all diplomatic, military, and economic aid to you? I would think that there would be practically no chance that Israel would attack, and if it was sufficiently suicidal to do so anyway, at least the U.S. would be blamed a lot less, if at all.

      As for the question of whether the American people will blame Israel for the consequences to U.S. national interests, Israel has been playing with fire on this matter for decades, and–to my great amazement–has gotten away with it until now. The Israeli occupation and repression of the Palestinians, from the very beginning, has not only been a moral crime, it has always been antithetical to the U.S. national interest.

      One of these days the chickens are going to come home to roost. To slightly paraphrase your last sentence: And if they do, Israel will pay the price. And possibly even American Jews, though I doubt it.

    • Shingo
      January 14, 2012, 4:37 pm

      Israel is a sovereign country. If it attacks Israel, it is unreasonable for Iran to blame the US.

      So if Hezbollah attacks Israel, will you blame Iran or not?

      Has any country said they will cut relations with Israel if it attacks Iran? Not to my knowledge. Why single the US out for this act of omission?

      Because the US alone has the incluence to affect Israeli policy.

      Of course there will be a minority which says that it is the US fault for supporting Israel or Israel’s fault, just as there were some people after 9/11 who voiced similar thoughts. But the vast majority won’t.

      You are completely deluding yourself eee. The vast majority of the world knows that ISrael is driving this conflict and that the US is acting on Israel’s behalf. You seriously need to get out more.

      As for the occupation, Americans can just read what Bill Clinton wrote about the 2000 negotiations and understand why there is no peace.

      Better still, the can read Slomo Ben Ami’s book to understand why the Palestiniasn were right to reject the Camp David offer of 2000 and that it was Barak who ended the talks at Taba in 2001.

      Why would Americans not believe what Clinton said? There is no one more credible than him on this issue as he was the directly in charge of the negotiations.

      Yeah cute. The same man who dodged the draft but said he woudl take up arms for Israel?

      Nice bit of comedy there eee. Always the clown.

    • NorthOfFortyNine
      January 14, 2012, 5:05 pm

      @ eee: Why would Americans not believe what Clinton said?”

      That’s very funny. You missed your calling. -N49.

    • Jerome Slater
      January 14, 2012, 5:12 pm

      eee and Shingo

      A rare agreement between Slater and Shingo, point by point. Except I would have put the point about Clinton differently. Clinton had little or no independent knowledge about the history of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, so he relied heavily on Dennis Ross. Need I say more? When Clinton blamed the end of the Camp David negotiations on Arafat, he was wrong about the facts–thanks to the disingenuous Ross–not to mention that he broke his promise to Arafat not to blame him if the talks broke down, a promise that was necessary to persuade Arafat to come to Camp David in the first place, since Arafat feared–correctly–that no agreement would be reached.

      As Shingo points out, Shlomo Ben-Ami, a former Israeli foreign minister no less, has written a book which takes on the Clinton-Ross argument directly, and so have a number of other Israelis who actively participated in the negotiations.

      In short, it was primarily Barak who was responsible for the breakdown. He since has boasted–boasted, mind you–that “I didn’t give a thing” in the negotiations; if anything, he actually hardened the Israeli position on Jerusalem and any shared sovereignty over the Temple Mount/Haram–much to the dismay of many of the Israeli negotiators and foreign policy officials.

      That’s not just my opinion–it is that of scholars who have closely examined what actually happened, as well as, to repeat, a number of Israeli officials or diplomats who know what really happened.

      Further, as Shingo says, the Israeli and Palestinian negotiators at the Taba conference, six months after Camp David, were on the verge of an agreement, including mutual compromises over the two most difficult issues, Jerusalem and the right of return. But Barak pulled the rug out from Yossi Beilin, the head of the Israeli delegation. If you don’t believe me, read Beilin’s memoir.

      Two months after Taba, the Israelis elected Ariel Sharon. End of story.

    • Jerome Slater
      January 14, 2012, 5:20 pm

      eee and Shingo

      A rare agreement between Slater and Shingo, point by point. Except I would have put the point about Clinton differently. Clinton had little or no independent knowledge about the history of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, so he relied heavily on Dennis Ross. Need I say more? When he blamed the end of the Camp David negotiations on Arafat, he was wrong about the facts, not to mention that he broke his promise to Arafat not to blame him if the talks broke down, a promise that was necessary to persuade Arafat to come to Camp David in the first place, since Arafat feared–correctly–that no agreement would be reached.

      As Shingo points out, Shlomo Ben-Ami, a former Israeli foreign minister no less, has written a book which takes on the Clinton-Ross argument directly, and so have a number of other Israelis who actively participated in the negotiations.

      In short, it was primarily Barak who was responsible for the breakdown. He since has boasted–boasted, mind you–that “he didn’t give a thing” in the negotiations; if anything, he actually hardened the Israeli position on Jerusalem and any shared sovereignty over the Temple Mount/Haram.

      That’s not just my opinion–it is that of scholars who have closely examined what actually happened, as well as, to repeat, a number of Israeli officials or diplomats who know what really happened.

      Further, as Shingo says, the Israeli and Palestinian negotiators at the Taba conference, six months after Camp David, were on the verge of an agreement, including mutual compromises over the two most difficult issues, Jerusalem and the right of return. But Barak pulled the rug out from Yossi Beilin, the head of the Israeli delegation. If you don’t believe me, read Beilin’s memoir.

    • Shingo
      January 14, 2012, 5:27 pm

      A rare agreement between Slater and Shingo, point by point.

      Not as rare as you might believe Jerry.

      Granted, the last week has been more disagreement than agreement.

    • seanmcbride
      January 14, 2012, 6:40 pm

      Another pitch perfect Slater post. Certainly Slater is not a “liberal Zionist” in the same way that Dennis Ross is. He’s mostly a hard-edged no-nonsense truth teller on nearly all Israeli issues.

      I am mostly discounting or ignoring some of his earlier remarks that ruffled the feathers of some of us here — when he gets down to business he’s usually on target.

      Regarding Slater’s views on just war theory — I think they are sincere and well-intentioned even though my take on that subject is quite cynical.

    • Robert Werdine
      January 14, 2012, 8:06 pm

      Shingo,

      Can you or anyone else please tell me what agreement Israelis and Palestinians were on the verge of at Taba? For example, on refugees. What were they close to agreement on?

  15. Kathleen
    January 13, 2012, 3:46 pm

    That article from Foreign Policy was up as the front page piece for what about an hour? Lots of comments going up. Hope folks get over there and link to Phil’s piece about Chris Matthews/Baer and the exchange over at Race for Iran between Flynt, Dennis Ross, Slavin and Parsi. That is a must listen. Makes me wonder why Ross left or if he was let go of..

    • American
      January 13, 2012, 4:24 pm

      I’ve never thought Ross left of his own accord. He woudn’t remove himself and his Israel cause from the center of power if he could help it.
      10 t0 1 he was caught out in some no-no intelligence WH discussion slip on Israel.

  16. jonah
    January 13, 2012, 4:56 pm

    These journalists are ridiculous. With great chutzpah and without a shred of concrete evidence, they point their accusing finger at Israel. Here we can se how the fundamental principle of law “in dubio pro reo” is simply unhinged from its foundation to create and uphold publicly an worn-out and idiotic conspiracy theory. Neither self-control nor any law seem able to retain the irrepressible need to release the bias against Israel.

    Fortunately, the public in its majority is intelligent enough to see the donkey dressed as a lion.

    • Kathleen
      January 13, 2012, 5:06 pm

      Because the majority of the public never gets the truth from the MSM. Yeah Bob Baer, Ray McGovern, Flynt and Hillary Mann Leverett, Kathleen and Bill Christison, Bryzinski, Scott Ritter, Seymour Hersh just love to make up hogwash about Israel’s push for a war with Iran.

    • mig
      January 13, 2012, 5:18 pm

      Que bono jonah ?

    • lysias
      January 13, 2012, 5:20 pm

      Those CIA memos are not concrete evidence?

    • MRW
      January 13, 2012, 6:16 pm

      No jonah, you are dead wrong. Israel’s mitts, and its US amen choir, are all over wanting war with Iran. I don’t know where you live, but I am hearing the big sucking sound of ears opening like a vacuum jar, and the references to Israel as “the Jews,” which stands to reason when Israel insists on self-describing as the Jewish State. I am hearing “The Jews want war with Iran because of Israel.” There is no separation in the addled minds of those I’m listening to at the bar (lots of vets, ex-military, Fox News types) between American Jews, in general, and Israel. They appear to be synonymous; Netanyahu promotes this. Those cheering it are the Christian Zios, lots of Jesus talk. I will be interested to hear this weekend what they think about the FP report that Israelis are impersonating American CIA agents.

      Here are two howls for war with Iran that go back five years:

      General Oded Tira:
      December 31, 2006
      link to ynetnews.com
      What to do with Iran? — We must coordinate independent strike with US, prepare for Iranian response

      “President Bush lacks the political power to attack Iran. As an American strike in Iran is essential for our existence, we must help him pave the way by lobbying the Democratic Party (which is conducting itself foolishly) and US newspaper editors. We need to do this in order to turn the Iranian issue to a bipartisan one and unrelated to the Iraq failure.”

      Norman Podhoretz — Commentary Magazine
      The Case for Bombing Iran

      It now remains to be seen whether this President, battered more mercilessly and with less justification than any other in living memory, and weakened politically by the enemies of his policy in the Middle East in general and Iraq in particular, will find it possible to take the only action that can stop Iran from following through on its evil intentions both toward us and toward Israel. As an American and as a Jew, I pray with all my heart that he will.

      • MRW
        January 13, 2012, 6:36 pm

        Further, jonah, it’s a short ride from explaining—mere explication—that it’s the “Jews who want war with Iran for Israel” to anger at the war, should it happen, embuing the word Jews with a darker connotation. Israel is playing with fire and endangering Jews worldwide. We get to watch this sausage being made and there will be no escaping it.

      • yourstruly
        January 15, 2012, 3:26 am

        in the event of a u.s.-iran war will jewish zionists in america engineer a transfer agreement with the u.s government that’ll allow, in exchange for, say, a hundred million smackeroos, that the wealthiest 0.1% of them be allowed to emmigrate to israel, as per the 1933 transfer agreement between german zionists and the nazis that allowed thousands of wealthy german jews to escape to palestine. the government would stipulate that the money collected would go towards reducing the national debt. what would happen to jewish-americans left behind? so long as israel received an influx of jews, would that matter to zionists?

  17. Keith
    January 13, 2012, 6:49 pm

    “I know the White House doesn’t want a war with Iran.”

    “…in the Pentagon in November 2001, one of the senior military staff officers had time for a chat. Yes, we were still on track for going against Iraq, he said. But there was more. This was being discussed as part of a five-year campaign plan, he said, and there were a total of seven countries, beginning with Iraq, then Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Iran, Somalia and Sudan…. (Wesley Clark, Winning Modern Wars, p. 130).
    link to globalresearch.ca

  18. Richard Witty
    January 14, 2012, 9:11 am

    link to thejc.com

    PA shares Israel’s nuclear Iran fears

    “Speaking in his Ramallah headquarters, Prime Minister Fayyad said that the Palestinians were “greatly harmed” by the Iranian leader’s conduct. “

    • Donald
      January 14, 2012, 11:07 am

      So what? One doesn’t have to like the Iranian government to disapprove of what Israel is doing. Good attempt at distraction though. The story here is that CIA guys claim Mossad has been pretending to be CIA, thereby increasing the chances of war between the US and Iran.

      On second thought, bad attempt at distraction. Too obvious.

    • Donald
      January 14, 2012, 11:14 am

      Now, Richard, if you’d like to see a link that is directly relevant to the topic at hand, here’s one that says Israel’s terrorist program is likely to backfire (I found this at Richard Silverstein’s blog)–

      why Iran assassinations are backfiring aiding nuclear program

      • Richard Witty
        January 14, 2012, 1:24 pm

        You really don’t consider the effects on Palestinian political efforts to be relevant?

      • Donald
        January 14, 2012, 7:50 pm

        “You really don’t consider the effects on Palestinian political efforts to be relevant?”

        I think they are relevant, but not in this thread. The thread isn’t about how Iran effects the I/P problem, but on how Israel might be trying to start a war between the US and Iran. You know that.

      • eljay
        January 14, 2012, 7:01 pm

        >> why Iran assassinations are backfiring aiding nuclear program

        >> The killing of yet another nuclear scientist in Tehran this week is pushing the Iranian people to side with the military regime and emboldening enrichment efforts.

        No kidding. Frequent existential threats made against it, in addition to the assassination of its citizens on its own soil, mean that Iran has no option but to push hard and fast to acquire nukes.

        >> “This is an egregious act of violation of many different rights, to infiltrate into a sovereign state and to assassinate its citizens.”

        Yes, yes it is. And it should be condemned. I condemn it.

      • yourstruly
        January 15, 2012, 3:28 am

        it’s called state terrorism

    • Shingo
      January 14, 2012, 4:30 pm

      PA shares Israel’s nuclear Iran fears

      So now the PA is credible? What a clown you are Witty.

      • Richard Witty
        January 14, 2012, 5:23 pm

        They are certainly credible on the affects on Palestinian legal and diplomatic efforts.

      • Shingo
        January 14, 2012, 6:17 pm

        All of which you oppose.

  19. Justice Please
    January 14, 2012, 2:36 pm

    Ooooh, the White House seems to have complained a little to Israel:

    “President Barack Obama, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta and other top officials have delivered a string of private messages to Israeli leaders warning about the dire consequences of a strike [on Iran].”
    link to online.wsj.com

    Hey, Doofus Obama – if a semitheocracy like Israel tries to get you into a disastrous war against a country which has attacked nobody for hundred years, you don’t just “warn”. You threaten Israel with war, should they pull a false-flag against US interests, to blame them on Iran.

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