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How to avoid war with Iran

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Widespread media-enforced ignorance about Operation Ajax provoked Adbusters to famously call the U.S. “the United States of Amnesia.”

Elided from mainstream media coverage, the root cause of the current standoff with Iran is the 1953 U.S.-orchestrated overthrow of Iran’s democratically-elected government and its Prime Minister, Mohammed Mossadegh. This led to decades of U.S.-backed oppression under the Shah’s brutal dictatorship. The U.S. could prevent a disastrous military engagement with Iran by following this simple plan:

– Fly a high ranking official – Sec. Clinton, at the least – to Tehran and deliver a full and public apology for the coup and subsequent oppression, perhaps along with reparations;

– Additionally, offer Iran normalized diplomatic relations, and as part of the package, both a non-aggression treaty and a broad agreement on a nuclear weapons free Middle East, to which the U.S. would pressure all states in the region – including Israel – to become signatories.

Iran would likely accept. That’s it. Sanity, right?

Unfortunately, the neoconservatives, the pro-Israel lobby, and Israel’s government are determined to a) maintain Israel’s covert nuclear weapons monopoly at all costs, and b) provoke yet another pre-emptive war of aggression. The consequences will at minimum be catastrophic and involve the deaths of thousands of Iranian civilians, however, the worst case scenario could be a regional and/or nuclear war.

Attention U.S. occupiers: please, do the world a favor. #OCCUPYCONGRESS! Demand an apology to Iran for overthrowing their government, and normalized diplomatic relations!

Matthew Taylor

Matthew A. Taylor is co-founder of PeacePower magazine, and author of "The Road to Nonviolent Coexistence in Palestine/Israel," a chapter in the book Nonviolent Coexistence.

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66 Responses

  1. eljay on November 9, 2011, 9:21 am

    >> The U.S. could prevent a disastrous military engagement with Iran by following this simple plan:

    A clear and concise “better argument” that even a fraudulent “humanist” could approve of! (Or not.)

  2. Potsherd2 on November 9, 2011, 9:31 am

    Hear! Hear!

    This is so sensible I’m sure the authors will never be heard from again.

    It also has the virtue of refocusing the Iran problem from Israel and onto the US, which is in a way an end-around the Lobby as it is not explicitly an anti-Israeli position. I know that many people who post here prefer to concentrate on the Israeli problem, and certainly the warmongering from Israel and its minions is currently at a fever pitch, but it’s wrong to overlook the fact that the US has had a hardon for Iran since the 1950s, and definitely since the hostage crisis, for which it has never forgiven Iran. In those Cold War days at least, not all evils perpetrated by the US were of Israeli origin.

    • Taxi on November 9, 2011, 9:52 am

      Getting the USA to say sorry is even harder than getting the Fonze to say it.

      Diplomacy is not something they really understand on Capitol Hill. They use and abuse diplomacy to further their quest for empire – not to spread peace and justice on the planet.

      The 1% don’t make money outta peace. Peace don’t give ’em peace of mind.

      • on November 9, 2011, 3:23 pm

        gotta say, though; not sure I completely agree that “the root cause of the current standoff with Iran is the 1953 U.S.-orchestrated overthrow of Iran’s democratically-elected government and its Prime Minister, Mohammed Mossadegh.

        Precipitating event, si; root cause, no.

        The root cause was then, and remains now, the same: the desire of the West — from the late 1800s until 1953, Great Britain; and since then, as the US has replaced GB as hegemon in the Persian Gulf region, the United States in cahoots with other Westerns, to control Iran’s resources, economic activity, and political form and sovereignty.
        That has not changed.
        Madeleine Albright issued a half-hearted apology for the Mossadeqh affair, but that was lip service and did not change the underlying agenda — to control Iran’s sovereignty.

        Israel’s involvement in the situation has added a new layer of hysteria and danger to the situation. In fact, if the two agendas wrt Iran, that of the US and that of Israel, are laid side by side, it becomes apparent that Israel and the US are in competition for control over Iran. Israel is wily enough to be using the US to eviscerate Iran — through sanctions and, god forbid, a military attack, but it is abundantly clear to this observer that Israel’s goal is NOT to protect US interests, but only Israel’s interests.

        Israelis were intricately involved in Iran’s affairs, and benefited mightily from that close relationship financially, strategically, psychologically, and politically, until the Revolution (and beyond — through the Iran-Iraq war, Israel profited from arms sales to Iran). Israel passionately seeks to reinstate that relationship.

        I’d like to share the euphoria, but I don’t think an apology will do it — the Iranians would, I believe, graciously accept a proferred mea culpa, but would also seek a demonstration of a more fundamental change in the behavior of the US. In fact, iirc, Khameini responded in just that fashion to Obama’s Cairo speech: fine words, now let’s see the follow-through in a change in behavior. Sadly, that has not occurred.

  3. pabelmont on November 9, 2011, 10:04 am

    There are things that are worth doing even if they are likely to fail of their avowed purposes. USA saying “sorry” to Iran is such a thing. (USA has many other countries to say “sorry” to, of course. Iraq and Palestine, for recent starters. Most of Central America. etc. ad naus.)

    However, USA cannot offer a “broad agreement on nukes” because it cannot compel Israel, Pakistan, India to join such a treaty (I suppose these are in Iran’s “region” what with long-range missiles these days).

    Better, IMO, is to back off all the anti-nuclear stuff. I don’t see the danger of a few nukes here and there if they are kept for national use and not given-to-or-stolen-by terrorists. (Can we say for sure that Israel’s nukes have not fallen into the hands of terrorists, such as the settler-groups in the IDF?)

  4. American on November 9, 2011, 10:41 am

    That is a rational and intelligent plan and Iran would accept it even without an apology. But it’s never going to happen.
    Why? Because of the Jewish state and it’s supporters in the US and it’s Lobby.
    Pay attention to the “Restrictions on Contact” in the latest Iran sanctions bills passed by congress. Rosenberg, who ought to know, says this bill was written by AIPAC word for word and given to congress to pass as is.
    Anyone who thinks WAR on Iran isn’t the END GAME of the Jewish state and it’s supporters in the US and it’s Lobby isn’t reading this right.
    This has never before happened in the history of this country and is in fact unconstitutional.
    So now the Jewish state and US zionist supporters have; first, driven the US from it’s own interest, second, driven it from all particpation in international law and third, now driven it from it’s own constitution.
    If the Senate approves it…then the war train has left the station

    ‘Lobbying for a US war with Iran, AIPAC is pushing a bill that would prohibit diplomacy between the two nations.’

    MJ Rosenberg

    The House Foreign Affairs Committee hurriedly convened this week to consider a new “crippling sanctions” bill that seems less designed to deter an Iranian nuclear weapon than to lay the groundwork for war.

    The clearest evidence that war is the intention of the bill’s supporters comes in Section 601:

    (c) RESTRICTION ON CONTACT – No person employed with the United States Government may contact in an official or unofficial capacity any person that –
    (1) is an agent, instrumentality, or official of, is affiliated with, or is serving as a representative of the Government of Iran; and
    (2) presents a threat to the United States or is affiliated with terrorist organisations.

    (d) WAIVER – The president may waive the requirements of subsection (c) if the president determines and so reports to the appropriate congressional committees 15 days prior to the exercise of waiver authority that failure to exercise such waiver authority would pose an unusual and extraordinary threat to the vital national security interests of the United States.

    Preventing diplomacy

    So what does this mean? It means that neither the president, the secretary of state, nor any US diplomat or emissary may engage in negotiations or diplomacy of any kind unless the president convinces the “appropriate congressional committees” (most significantly, the House Foreign Affairs Committee, which is an AIPAC fiefdom) that not permitting the contacts would pose an “extraordinary threat to the vital national security interests of the United States”.

    To call this unprecedented is an understatement. At no time in our history has the White House or State Department been restricted from dealing with representatives of a foreign state, even in wartime.

    But preventing diplomacy is precisely what Representative Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL) and Howard Berman (D-CA), leaders of the House Foreign Affairs Committee that set out this bill, seek. They and others who back the measure want another war and the best way to get it is to ban diplomacy (which exists, of course, to prevent war).

    Think back, for example, to the Cuban missile crisis. The United States
    Then, at the darkest moment of the crisis, when war seemed inevitable, an ABC correspondent named John Scali secretly met with a Soviet official in New York who described a way to end the crisis that would satisfy his bosses. That meeting was followed by another secret meeting between the president’s brother, Attorney General Robert F Kennedy, and a Soviet official in Washington. Those meetings led to a plan that ended the crisis and, perhaps, saved the world.

    Needless to say, Kennedy did not ask for the permission of the House Foreign Affairs Committee either to conduct secret negotiations or to implement the terms of the deal. In fact, it was decades before the details of the deal were revealed.

    It is this latitude to conduct diplomacy that the lobby and its cutouts on Capitol Hill want to take away from the White House. And it’s latitude that is especially essential if it is determined that Iran is trying to assemble a nuclear arsenal.

    Strategic engagement with an adversary can go hand in hand with a policy that encourages change in that country. That’s how Washington dealt with the Soviet Union and China in the 1970s and 1980s. Iran is a country of 80 million people, educated and dynamic. It sits astride a crucial part of the world. It cannot be sanctioned and pressed down forever. It is the last great civilisation to sit outside the global order. We need a strategy that combines pressure with a path to bring Iran in from the cold.’

    Go here and listen to MJ being interviewed on this article and explain how AIPAC literally writes ALL the legistation on the ME and Israel:

    • James on November 9, 2011, 12:17 pm

      i agree american.. you have your eye on the ball..

      fearmocracy as practiced in amerika today –

      “Restrictions on Contact” – us congress response, supported by the wapo, nyt and wall st journal ad nauseum…

      adbusters is the intelligent response…this means they are anti-semite and will not be given a rebuttal in the nyt, lol…

      this shit is so whacked out, it is hard to deal in reality…

    • Matthew Taylor on November 9, 2011, 9:51 pm

      thanx American. great contributions to this discussion! the historical context re: diplomacy is crucial.

  5. Sin Nombre on November 9, 2011, 10:56 am

    Matthew Taylor wrote:

    “Additionally, offer Iran normalized diplomatic relations, and as part of the package, both a non-aggression treaty and a broad agreement on a nuclear weapons free Middle East…”

    I’m delighted that someone in all this “attack Iran” hysteria has put their finger through the bubble that is the present (mainstream) discourse and brought up the ultimate, complete answer to or at least explanation of reality, which is a Nuke-Free ME Accord.

    Ought to be the first and the last thing out of the mouths of those opposing any attack upon Iran, or at least any American attack on Iran: Even if, for some reason, someone just accepts that the U.S. ought go doing Israel’s bidding to protect Israel, it’s just simply unanswerable:

    Israel *isn’t* just simply and reasonably asking that it not be subject to nuclear attack, threats or blackmail by its neighbors. It’s asking that it be the *only* one in the ME to be able to use nukes to attack, threaten or blackmail its neighbors.

    And this is an entirely different kettle of fish. Showing, no doubt, why the issue of a Nuke-Free ME Accord, or even just a mutual Israel/Iran Nuke-Free Accord is just never mentioned by anyone here in Western officialdom. When you can’t counter the undeniable, do everything in your power to make everyone else ignore and forget it…

  6. Dan Crowther on November 9, 2011, 11:05 am

    These proposals are rational, moral and necessary; therefore, they have a snow-balls chance in hell of coming into fruition.

  7. on November 9, 2011, 11:32 am

    If global mobsters, traitors, and gangsters, also known as “our” representatives want this war , it will happen.
    We can object, protest, curse, write, talk,sing against it untill cows come home ,but they will do it anyway if this is their wish, a plan.
    They think that 1% holds 99% in its iron grip, and whatever they decide it will happen.
    Especially, especially that how many, out of those 99% ,are “useful idiots”,
    who are always ready and willing to serve their 1% Masters?
    How many ?? 40%, 60%, 80%. Beats me.

  8. on November 9, 2011, 11:36 am

    Very good article.
    “………Instead of dealing with constituents who are facing economic disaster 81 Congress members took a free all expenses paid holiday to Israel this year. Alison Weir founder of “If Americans Knew” wrote:
    “This is an extraordinary situation. No other lobby on behalf of a foreign country comes anywhere near to controlling such wealth or taking so many of America’s elected representatives on a propaganda trip to their favorite country.”
    The power of the pro Israel groups is Britain is not so visible as political commentator Peter Oborne attempted to reveal in a Dispatches documentary “Inside Britain’s Pro Israel Lobby”.
    A report by Rajeev Syal in The Observer stated that Britain’s most active pro-Israeli propaganda organisation Bicom “which flies journalists to Israel on fact-finding trips and organises access to senior government figures – has received nearly £1.4m in two years from a billionaire donor whose father made a fortune manufacturing arms in Israel.” It was also revealed that the billionaire was the pro Israeli Poju Zabludowicz.

    In Britain any criticism of Israel is muzzled and suppressed through howls of “anti Semitism”. The BBC has already been caught many times propagating the hasbara propaganda; when Israeli commandos attacked the Mavi Mara in international waters killing 9 Turkish peace activists the BBC’s Panorama programme on the subject was slated by many for its pro Israel biased approach………”

  9. Charon on November 9, 2011, 11:40 am

    The US never even apologized to Iran for shooting down Iran Air 655, a civilian airliner

    • lysias on November 9, 2011, 11:55 am

      Wasn’t it with regard to that shootdown that George Herbert Walker Bush said he was never going to apologize for the U.S.?

      “I’ll never apologize for the United States of America. Ever. I don’t care what the facts are.”

      By the way, when I was working in the Pentagon, I heard that the word on Captain Rogers (captain of the Vincennes, the ship that shot the airbus down) was that he was a triggerhappy cowboy. That was certainly the impression created by an article that Commander David Carlson, commander of the USS Sides, which was on the scene at the time of the shootdown, wrote for the Proceedings of the U.S. Naval Institute on the shootdown.

      By the way, besides not apologizing for the shootdown, the U.S. awarded Capt. Rogers the Legion of Merit, and Commander Scott Lustig, the air-warfare coordinator, the Navy Commendation Medal.

      • on November 9, 2011, 1:44 pm

        This morning NPR reported on the opening of the military trial of Abd al-Rahim Nashri, accused of leading the perpetrators of the bombing of the USS Cole in Yemen over 11 years ago. NPR painted a word picture of the crime:

        The Cole was refueling in Yemen in 2000 when a rubber boat full of explosives drew up alongside and detonated: 17 servicemen and servicewomen died in the attack, and scores were injured.

        and of the charges

        For his alleged role, al-Nashiri is being charged with war crimes — including terrorism, conspiracy and murder.

        of his capture and treatment while in US/CIA custody:

        Al-Nashiri was arrested in 2002 and then disappeared for nearly four years. The CIA has since acknowledged that he was in its custody and that he was waterboarded and subjected to other enhanced interrogation techniques. Among other things, a drill was run near his head, and his family was threatened. That means the military commission will have to grapple with torture in this case as well. For people tracking the progress of Guantanamo detainees, there will be a more basic milestone Wednesday: When al-Nashiri walks into the courtroom, it will be the first time he’s been seen in public in nine years.

        and of the punishment:

        he could be put to death if he is found guilty.

        IN CONTRAST, The Israeli perpetrators of the deliberate strafing and killing of 34 and injuring of 174 Americans– sailors, officers, and civilians, who were aboard the USS Liberty in the Mediterranean on June 8, 1967, have never been identified or brought to justice.

  10. seafoid on November 9, 2011, 12:34 pm

    “How to avoid war in iran” . Israel wants war because it is run by the same kind of insane militarists who drove Japan into WW2.
    In the Japanese case the people were fed propaganda about the glorious Japanese nation and the eternal Emperor and in Israel’s case it’s the glorious Jewish people and the eternal capital Jerusalem.

  11. lysias on November 9, 2011, 12:41 pm

    Congress didn’t have much to do with the overthrow of Mossadegh. That was done by the CIA (as well as British MI6), with the approval of Allen Dulles’s brother John Foster at the State Department and of President Eisenhower.

    • MRW on November 9, 2011, 1:21 pm

      And caused the book The Ugly American to be written. Until it came out, Americans didn’t know.

    • Matthew Taylor on November 9, 2011, 9:55 pm

      Lysias – irrelevant to the point of my story. Read Kinzer’s book. The United States, as a sovereign state and as a nation, owes a huge debt of apology and reparations to the Iranian people (along with many other peoples around the world, including the Palestinians, who our foreign policy has oppressed).

      • lysias on November 10, 2011, 11:59 am

        I happen to have read Kinzer’s book, and don’t recall reading anything in it about the Congress having a role in Mossadegh’s overthrow.

        My point was that there are other buildings in and around D.C. that it might be more appropriate to occupy than the Capitol in response to what happened in 1953.

  12. kalithea on November 9, 2011, 12:43 pm

    Phew, finally someone puts the blame for this insanity and the reason the U.S. is totally restricted from arriving at a more logical, constructive conclusion almost squarely in the Zionist camp only unfortunately, avoiding using the term. Everyone needs to stop being afraid to say “Zionists” and Zionism are at the core of this problem. Unfortunately Zionism is equated with Judaism. So Jews have the RESPONSIBILITY to distance themselves from Zionism by exposing it for what it is and CONDEMNING IT. Fighting for justice for the Palestinians and condemning the insanity of potential war is NOT ENOUGH and will not work unless the grip of Zionism is loosened. Condemning the ideology that sustains this insanity must happen or this situation is hopeless. Israel and its backward Apartheid system are the manifestation of Zionism; the detrimental status quo regarding U.S. policy vis a vis the Middle East is the manifestation of Zionism via the LOBBY which includes many Zionist lobbies and entities. The “Zionist” Lobby has no right to its secretiveness and no right to be a powerful group in the shadows exercising control of U.S. foreign policy. Yes, I see comments here that express it as it is, but rarely do I come across an article that boldly goes to the heart of the truth: Zionism IS the problem. Refusing to say out loud “Zionism is the problem” is like an alcoholic refusing to say “I’m an alcoholic”. The cure begins here.

    Millions of Zionists adhere to Zionism and it’s time for Jews with a conscience to make them see that Zionism didn’t work, is not working and is inherently wrong and bad for all Jews and the security and well-being of this planet. Rather than just decrying the injustice and insanity that Zionism creates, it’s time to wean everyone away from this ideology.

    There is something unnatural about the fact that everyone tiptoes around Zionism, like it’s some sacred cow that compensates for unresolved guilt, when really the reason the term Zionist and Zionism is avoided is because everyone knows it conjures up something NEGATIVE while they witness the destructive proof of its influence. Everyone knows that using the word “Zionist” is avoided because it sounds disparaging, but it sounds disparaging because of what Zionism has produced. Ahmedinejad wouldn’t be able to own the word “Zionist” if Zionism didn’t give him the power to own it by being what it is: a grave injustice on the path to destruction and a threat to Democratic values. Zionists have no right to claim any moral high ground with Ahmedinejad until they clean up their act; and they’re not going to do that because Zionism itself provides them with the ultimate excuse for absolution.

    The self-destruction will not end until everyone is completely honest and straightforward about what is causing it. When the truth appears as blasphemy; it’s because someone has been manipulating and repressing it for too long making us afraid to express it. This inability to express the truth is what led to this self-destructive quagmire. The truth should never be burdened by guilt and fear or because it may might offend or saddled with the term “unhelpful”. What’s really offensive is witnessing how Zionism is decimating peace and Democracy and everyone is cowering from taking the first step to turn this around by first admitting that something is inherently wrong with this ideology that has brought nothing but grief, injustice, war and now potential disaster for this planet.

    • on November 9, 2011, 1:46 pm


      You nailed it.
      You comment should be on the first page.

      • on November 9, 2011, 2:07 pm

        Here is a short ,lovely musical piece dedicated for kalithea:)
        There is so much simple beauty in the world, why some want so desperately to destroy it??

      • kalithea on November 9, 2011, 9:48 pm

        Hey thanks!

      • James on November 9, 2011, 3:27 pm

        i agree…

        there seems to be a continuous effort by israel to equate zionism and judiasm with israel as well..if you are opposed to zionism, it means you are opposed to israel.. that is the thinking that is being pushed on folks which is frankly – bullshite.. all this in spite of the fact many jewish people around the planet are not in agreement with israel or zionism and it’s slow mo genocide of the palestinian people, along with constant beating of war drums on iran…

    • on November 9, 2011, 1:56 pm

      the huge problem that may be encountered, kalithea, is Where do you stop, with unraveling the body of lies that zionism has created around itself?

      In comments at a Middle East Policy Institute forum in 2010, Ian Lustick explained Netanyahu’s obsessive identification of Iran with Nazi Germany in their scheme to “destroy Jews.” But the comparison is entirely wrong, although Bibi has been purveying the concept for over 30 years, and has most Israelis and many American Jews convinced of its rightness, and of the imminence of another holocaust.

      If it is the case –as it clearly is –that the narrative of Iran as Germany 1938 and Ahmadinejad as Hitler is completely wrong and a figment of Bibi’s zionized imagining, then what credibility may one invest in earlier zionist narratives? Where does one stop in unraveling the chain of lies and propaganda?

      • john h on November 9, 2011, 3:00 pm

        “Where do you stop, with unraveling the body of lies that zionism has created around itself?”

        Nowhere. What should be realized is that Zionism is a rebellion against, and rejection of, Judaism and its scriptures. The Zionist narratives have replaced the God narratives.

        Zionism is a false religion, a veritable golden calf. It is a repeat of the Adam and Eve experience, and of what is found in 1 Samuel 8.

      • on November 9, 2011, 3:50 pm

        the competing narratives of Judaism are intriguing.

        In a speech at UN a few years back, Tzipi Livni pegged “her people’s” most sacred moment to Mt. Sinai, god covenanting w/ Jews, chosen people, etc.

        Most students of religion & history recognize that that event is mythological.

        From an historic point of view, the most important moment/event — I’d go so far as to say the BEGINNING point of Jewish history, is the exile in Babylon. THAT is where Judaism came together, where exiled Hebrews synthesized their tales with all the stories, mythologies, ethical systems and customs of Babylon, the epicenter of Middle Eastern culture and development. While in Babylon, the ethical systems of Isaiah and Jeremiah took shape; while in Babylon, the notion that the Hebrews were a distinct group who MUST remain separate and apart from their otherwise relatively benign hosts, the Persians, and others (one must assume the situation of Hebrews in Persian Babylon was relatively benign inasmuch as 60% of Hebrews chose to remain in Babylon rather than return to Jerusalem, whose rebuilding and resettlement Cyrus & Persia subsidized for over 200 yrs.). Jews remained in Babylon/Iraq/Iran for about 2000 years; Jewry was administered from Babylon through much of that time.

        Author Timothy Beal has an intriguing study of Esther & Purim: he reads it as the assertion of Jewish identity distinct and apart from the surrounding culture, frustrated at being submerged in the larger culture, and eager, Neil Diamond-like, to declare its “I AM” and simultaneously destroy the Other who has submerged that Jewish identity.

        As I was reading Beal’s study, The Book of Hiding: Gender, Ethnicity, Annihilation, and Esther, two thoughts occurred: I thought that Esther should be the patron saint of the Palestinian people, and I thought that Jewish celebration of Purim had become as inappropriate and anachronistic as a 45 year old man appearing in his office in his Dr. Denton’s.

      • patm on November 9, 2011, 4:20 pm

        “… what credibility may one invest in earlier zionist narratives?”

        None. The Zionists’ Israel project has proved to be a colossal folly.

        “Where does one stop in unraveling the chain of lies and propaganda?”

        At the point where the lies and propaganda stop.

    • john h on November 9, 2011, 2:15 pm

      dumvita, agreed, kalithea did nail it. I and others on this and other blogs have been saying exactly this for some time. Anyone with an unbrainwashed mind can see it clearly. Jabotinsky’s “The Iron Wall” should be required reading.

      The end of Zionism in practice would already have happened without US and European collusion. Its end is just as inevitable as was the end of Nazism, apartheid South Africa, and the communist Soviet Union.

      All of them impossible dreams and rotten ideologies based on the end justifies the means and might is right. And all of them have ruined countless lives for a vain macho pipedream of self-deceived people drunk with power and their own self-righteousness.

      • on November 9, 2011, 3:27 pm

        Zionism, Nazi and Communism have a lot of in common.
        All have a high disregard for independent rights of human beings.
        All found “THE ENEMY”.
        Nazi labeld Jews and other races and nationalities as sub-human, worthless.
        Communism regareded everybody, who did not agree with their “ideology” as the “enemy of the state”, “enemy of the people/massess”.
        Zionism regards all Palestinians/Arabs as their prime enemies, as well as those ,who are against their ideology , no matter who they are.
        They all promised something Great to a special group of people.
        Nazi promised Germans the Great German Empire, Communism promised all international workes and farmers the Great Communistic Empire, and Zionism promises all zionistic Jews the Great Zion/Israel Empire.
        All those groups, in different regimes, had a privileged status as long as they obeyed.
        I’m not even mentioning another Empire in making: The Great European Union Empire. It seems to crumble already, or rather it is actually changing its form, to a less friendly , more agressive one.
        We’ll wait, we’ll see.

      • Am_America on November 9, 2011, 3:31 pm

        Zionism, Nazi and Communism have a lot of in common.
        All have a high disregard for independent rights of human beings.

        Wow that is rich and I suppose you believe that Arabism is just a bastion of human rights.

        the rhetoric on here is getting pathetic.

      • john h on November 9, 2011, 4:41 pm

        “They all promised something Great to a special group of people.”

        Exactly, and that includes apartheid South Africa.

        Nazis were a special group of people, the Aryans. The South African Boers were a special group who were entering a new promised land. Communists were a special group, the proletariat that would bring equality. Zionists another special group who owned Palestine by divine and historical right even though they rejected that divinity and its writings.

      • on November 9, 2011, 5:40 pm

        Am America
        From what everybody, who has a sound mind and a sane spirit ,can observe, Arabs/Palestinians are the ones ,who are badly abused, imprisoned, humiliated, killed, thrown out of their houses and land.
        But of course , your book says something different.

      • on November 9, 2011, 5:51 pm

        john h,
        they have a few more things in common.
        1.Heavy indoctrination of young generations, bordering on child abuse.
        2. Manipulated, dishonest, media, who spill daily brain-washing propaganda just to keep the wheels rolling.
        3. A strong desire , need for EXPANSION.
        They can not fit in what they have. They need more. More land, more brainwashed people, more power.
        4. They invest heavily not only in their army, but also their in “penitentiary ” system. Jails, prisons, camps, gulags are a very important part of a well functioning Empire. “The ENEMIES” of the people, state, system, ideology, have to be under total CONTROL.
        5. Yeap, everybody/everything HAS TO be under control.
        Spies, confidents, special agents are always welcomed and well awarded in Empires.

    • American on November 9, 2011, 3:15 pm

      “There is something unnatural about the fact that everyone tiptoes around Zionism”

      I don’t tiptoe around. It’s a destructive, psychopathic cult and it attracts disturbed Jews and christian fanatics..the mentally sick.
      I for one am not going to accept the yada, yada, historical victimhood, holocuast, world owe us, yada,yada …as an excuse for one more second.
      This country or any other should be sacrificed because no one wants to hurt the feelings of a bunch of psychopaths and zealots or scare the Jews?
      I don’t think so.
      The fear of God or hell, whichever, needs to be put in these freaks….they have been way, way, way, way over the line for too long.

    • Matthew Taylor on November 9, 2011, 10:02 pm

      kalithea – if your blanket condemnation of all zionism is true, than what do you make of Martin Buber and Judah Magnes? I think the problem is not *all zionism,* but rather, *forms of zionism* based on conquest, ethnic cleansing, racism, and colonization… we could sum all that up and call it *militarized zionism*. yes, the majority of zionism in some way or other is based on this – even much of “liberal zionism.” however, i think the exceptions of Buber and Magnes are an important part of the historical legacy and should be remembered as a redeeming path forward.
      self identified zionists need not abandon their zionism, however, they should redefine their zionism it into an equality-embracing zionism based on the Buberian model. That would create real opportunities for Israeli-Palestinian equality. Go to Neve Shalom/Wahat al-Salam, and tell me, do you believe that the “Zionists” who live there are part of the problem? I believe they are in fact part of the solution.

      • Cliff on November 9, 2011, 10:07 pm

        Buber and Magnes are dead.

        There is NO meaningful Zionist faction that extols the same virtues.

        So there is no point in paying lip service to the value of ‘liberal Zionism’.

        You’ve done this schtick here before Matt.

      • Mooser on November 9, 2011, 10:48 pm

        A great example of the breathtaking entitlement inherent in Zionism. Because a couple of Zionists were not quite as bloodthirsty as the rest, that makes it alright? Not hardly. And of course, the laughable assumption that any time Israel decides to change, everything which came before will be forgotten about, no reparations no accounting.
        Not to mention the absurd supposition that Israel can turn on a dime from the course they have pursued in every aspect of their project for 50 years and more.

      • Mooser on November 9, 2011, 10:52 pm

        People are allowed to makle up their mind about Israel and ZIonism. They have had long enough.
        But you just keep painting yourself into that same old corner and end up by saying ‘well you just dislike Zionism cause it’s the Jews that do it.’

      • Hostage on November 10, 2011, 1:55 am

        if your blanket condemnation of all zionism is true, than what do you make of Martin Buber and Judah Magnes? . . . A great example of the breathtaking entitlement inherent in Zionism.

        Of course we would never tolerate foreigners inviting themselves to America and simply putting themselves in charge or city planning; immigration; and our form of government. In the early days, Buber was the editor of the central propaganda organ of the Zionist movement, Die Welt, where he advocated those things.

        Magnes was born in San Francisco and raised in Oakland. He needed a homeland in Palestine like he needed another hole in his head. Albert Einstein said Magnus owed his position in Palestine and the Hebrew University to Felix Warburg and was:

        a failed American rabbi, who, through his dilettantish enterprises had become uncomfortable to his family in America, who very much hoped to dispatch him honorably to some exotic place. This ambitious and weak person surrounded himself with other morally inferior men, who did not allow any decent person to succeed there … These people managed to poison the atmosphere there totally and to keep the level of the institution low.

        Magnus and liberal Zionists were instrumental in bringing Patrick Geddes to Palestine, where they devised plans for the University, Jerusalem, and Tel Aviv-Jaffa beginning in 1921 as if they owned all of those places. See for example Noah Hysler Rubin, “Geography, colonialism and town planning: Patrick Geddes’ plan for mandatory Jerusalem”, Cultural Geographies April 2011 vol. 18 no. 2 231-248

        The Hebrew University facilitated immigration by posting guaranty bonds for other foreigners seeking student visas until they could become naturalized. So yes, they assumed they had an entitlement and acted the part of colonizers like their more militant brethren.

      • Donald on November 9, 2011, 10:53 pm

        “I think the problem is not *all zionism,* but rather, *forms of zionism* based on conquest, ethnic cleansing, racism, and colonization…”

        I agree with this. A lot of people are emotionally attached to Zionism and possibly one way to win them over to the cause of peace would be to point to the ideas of people like Judah Magnes. As you say, it could be a redeeming path.

        The catch is getting most Israelis and Zionists to recognize that they form that has dictated the history of Israel is the conquering, ethnic cleansing, colonizing sort and persuading them that they should switch over to the Magnes variety. There’s not much sign of that happening.

      • Mooser on November 9, 2011, 11:35 pm

        ” switch over to the Magnes variety.”

        Oh, they will talk about that. But there is always, without fail the assumption of complete absence of accountability, and not a hint of reparations or justice.
        But of course, it’s all twaddle, anyway. Israel chose it’s course, and there is no indication that Israel won’t fight it out on those lines till the very end.
        Sometimes it’s irritating, the suggestion that a country which has allowed the settlers, the army, and the ultra-religious to dictate its internal and external policies is suddenly gonna go all Martin Buber. Give me a break, or better still, go tell it to “eee” and his ilk. Not that any self-respecting ilk would have anything to do with him.

      • john h on November 10, 2011, 3:36 pm

        “There’s not much sign of that happening.”

        There never has been, Donald, and as Hostage pointed out, this alternative is in fact apparent and not real.

        Jabotinsky dealt to this more gentle Zionism in his “The Iron Wall” way back in 1923, and has been prophetic and basically followed ever since.

        You agree with Matthew; I agree with Mooser.

      • Mooser on November 9, 2011, 10:55 pm

        “than what do you make of Martin Buber and Judah Magnes?”

        Maybe they should run for Prime Minister, or Warden, or whatever they got over there. Think they got a chance of winning, Mat?

  13. on November 9, 2011, 1:04 pm

    I wouldn’t send Hillary, I’d send Ron Paul.

  14. Theo on November 9, 2011, 1:10 pm

    How to avoid a war with Iran?

    Very simple, just send all american planes around Israel to bomb their airfields and missile sites. That will stop it for sure.
    This idea has as much chance as the proverbal snowflake in hell, but it pleases my mind. For once let them taste how is it at the receiving end.

  15. MRW on November 9, 2011, 1:22 pm

    Israel is so tedious.

  16. InAntalya on November 9, 2011, 2:27 pm

    Has everyone forgotten that the U.S. has had direct talks with Iran and even sent high-ranking officials to Iran – during Reagan’s presidency no less?

    Even if I weren’t someone who benefited from those talks, I still think they were a good idea then, and would be a good idea now.

    Other presidents also kept contacts between the U.S. and Iran going, even though very quietly. It was GWB who put them on ice and President Obama hasn’t been able to revive them due to the toxic politcal atmosphere in the U.S. now.

    • annie on November 9, 2011, 2:40 pm

      welcome InAntalya

    • James on November 9, 2011, 3:43 pm

      read americans 1041am post up above.. here is what people need to realize is going on at present in the congress of the usa…

      The House Foreign Affairs Committee hurriedly convened this week to consider a new “crippling sanctions” bill that seems less designed to deter an Iranian nuclear weapon than to lay the groundwork for war.

      The clearest evidence that war is the intention of the bill’s supporters comes in Section 601:

      “(c) RESTRICTION ON CONTACT – No person employed with the United States Government may contact in an official or unofficial capacity any person that –
      (1) is an agent, instrumentality, or official of, is affiliated with, or is serving as a representative of the Government of Iran; and
      (2) presents a threat to the United States or is affiliated with terrorist organizations.

      (d) WAIVER – The president may waive the requirements of subsection (c) if the president determines and so reports to the appropriate congressional committees 15 days prior to the exercise of waiver authority that failure to exercise such waiver authority would pose an unusual and extraordinary threat to the vital national security interests of the United States.

      Preventing diplomacy

    • iamuglow on November 9, 2011, 4:09 pm

      A decade ago, just before 9/11 and even after it Iran was portrayed entirely differently in the US. They were a country on the cusp of coming back into the fold…they had a moderate religious President…they were becoming more secular…I even so travel posters in European travel agencies for Iran…there was no talk of war with them.

      Materially Iran hasnt changed that much, yet in the US they are portrayed entirely differently…they are the enemy now. Its utter bs and it infuriates me.

  17. lysias on November 9, 2011, 3:24 pm

    Well, some people have occupied at least one congressional office: The Hill: Unemployed District residents stage sit-in at McConnell’s office (Nov. 3, 2011):

    Several dozen unemployed Washington residents occupied the D.C. office of Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) Thursday, looking to discuss jobs with the Senate minority leader.

    The group, reportedly members of the unemployment advocacy organization Our DC, entered the office shortly after 10 a.m., pledging to remain until McConnell granted a meeting on President Obama’s Rebuild America Jobs Act, according to Our DC’s website.

    . . .

    The demonstrators remained in McConnell’s office in the Russell Senate office building throughout the afternoon. Several were still present as of 5 p.m., the staffer added.

  18. ToivoS on November 9, 2011, 3:39 pm

    I think Matthew’s idea would not go down well with the current regime. The secular people in Tehran would love it, of course. The regime, not so much. After all the street riots that brought down the Mossadegh government and opened the way for the Shah to seize power were led by the same Islamist forces that rule Iran today. In 1953, they were willing tools of the CIA and MI6 organized coup.

    No one should forget that the secular parties and remnants of the Mossadegh movement involved in the 1979 overthrow of the Shah were subsequently brutally purged from the coalition once Khomeini consolidated power. Many hundreds were executed at that time.

  19. Robert Werdine on November 9, 2011, 3:48 pm

    Matthew Taylor,

    Said you:

    “Elided from mainstream media coverage, the root cause of the current standoff with Iran is the 1953 U.S.-orchestrated overthrow of Iran’s democratically-elected government and its Prime Minister, Mohammed Mossadegh. This led to decades of U.S.-backed oppression under the Shah’s brutal dictatorship.”

    I have addressed this before. The notion that America, by overthrowing Mossadeq in 1953, snatched democracy from Iran, is a fairy tale.

    However, I realize that the America-stole-democracy-from-Iran thesis is an article of faith on the left, and has even seeped into the mainstream somewhat. The Carter, Clinton, and Obama Administrations seem to have accepted it without question. Said Madeleine Albright:

    “The Eisenhower administration believed its actions were justified for strategic reasons. … But the coup was clearly a setback for Iran’s political development. And it is easy to see now why many Iranians continue to resent this intervention by America in their internal affairs.”

    And President Obama:

    “This issue has been a source of tension between the United States and the Islamic Republic of Iran. For many years, Iran has defined itself in part by its opposition to my country, and there is indeed a tumultuous history between us. In the middle of the Cold War, the United States played a role in the overthrow of a democratically elected Iranian government.”

    In fact, Mossadeq’s Iran at the time was a cauldron of anarchy, chaos, and double-dealing, and was moving fast toward a pro-Soviet coup and/or dictatorship, not democracy.

    Mossadeq had by this time gone a long way toward alienating his former allies and supporters by his vote rigging, his Byzantine attempts to maneuver the Shah aside and gather the Shah’s power unto himself, and his extra-constitutional attempts to grab power away from the Majlis, the Iranian parliament.

    First Mossadeq had sought to empower the Majlis by weakening the Shah. He insisted the Shah reign as a figurehead, and not as executive ruler. He sought control of the army, and, in July 1952, he manufactured a dispute with the Shah over the appointment of the war minister. He then upped the ante, and now demanded the Shah appoint him as war minister, and, when this was refused, resigned to much fanfare and popular support.

    The National Front, a loose coalition of liberal-progressive parties, now threw its support behind Mossadeq, as he had expected, and the streets of Tehran were convulsed with street protests where some 69 people died and some 750 injured, though the Shah held back the police and the military from firing on the protestors. After five days of chaos, the Shah bowed to the pressure and re-appointed Mossadeq prime minister.

    Mossadeq now resumed his grab for power. He appointed himself war minister, confiscated the Shah’s lands, expelled the Shah’s sister from the country, and forbade the Shah to have any contact with diplomats. Many of his liberal minded followers in the National Front, who supported him against the Shah, now began to have second thoughts, and, disillusioned, turned against him. The most prominent among them was the Ayatollah Kashani, of the Mujahedeen-i-Islam (Warriors of Islam) party, one of the parties included in the National Front. Kashani and many other opposition leaders were now actively blocking the PM’s legislation, and there was continued violence and chaos in the Majlis. (See Reza Ghods “Iran in the Twentieth Century: A Political History,” (1989), p.186 and Sepehr Zabih “The Mossadeq Era,” (1982), pp.40, 265)

    Mossadeq’s only way to hold on to power now was to dissolve the Majlis, and hold elections whose outcome he could control, but he was faced with an obstacle: under the Iranian constitution only the Shah could dissolve the Majlis. So Mossadeq engineered a detour: he would effect a mass resignation of the National Front, dissolve the Majlis, and then put his action to a national referendum on the novel theory that “popular will superseded the constitution.” As Iran scholar Evrand Abrahamian noted, “Mossadeq the constitutional lawyer who meticulously quoted the fundamental laws against the Shah, was now bypassing the same laws and resorting to the theory of the general will.” (See Evrand Abrahamian “Iran Between Two Revolutions,” (1982), p.279)

    The Shah by now had fled the capital. The vote in early August 1953, which, on the nod from Mossadeq, deliberately excluded the rural areas in an un-secret ballot, netted Mossadeq a 2,043,300 vote margin out of 2,044,600 votes cast—a brazenly fraudulent 99.93% “victory” that would have made even Ahmadinejad and the Mullahs blush with embarrassment.

    Though Mossadeq later attempted to justify his actions on the grounds that “royal interference” made it necessary, this was untrue. He had by this time almost completely sidelined the Shah into near irrelevance, and the Shah had in fact fled the capital by time the vote was taken. Mossadeq later admitted in an interview that he dissolved the 17th Majlis to avoid a confidence vote that would have collapsed his government.

    Mossadeq was really no different from most of the other third world leaders of the post war/post-colonial period. They all talked freedom, democracy, and human rights, and, when in power, practiced graft, vote-rigging, and mass oppression.

    As Kermit Roosevelt observed, by late August 1953, Mossadeq was “barely holding on to the broken sails of his sinking ship. Everything considered, whatever might be said of the morality or legality of the American action, it still should not be considered as having overthrown a stable regime in Iran.” (See Kermit Roosevelt Jr. “Countercoup: The struggle for the control of Iran,” (1979), p.210)

    Indeed. The transparently rigged referendum further alienated Mossadeq not only from the rest of the National Front, but from most parties all across the political spectrum in the Majlis as well. He who, in the name of the constitution and “democracy” had once championed the Majlis to check the power of the Shah, had now engineered an illegal and unconstitutional dissolution of the Majlis on the dubious premise that his action could be supported or rejected by a popular referendum, and had then proceeded to rig the referendum in his favor. Majlis member Jamal Imani denounced Mossadeq for “leading the country toward anarchy,” and the Ayatollah Kashani pronounced the referendum null and void, and contrary to Islamic law. Seeing his popular support within the National Front and the Majlis sink like a stone, Mossadeq now sidled up to the well-organized Communist Tudeh party, and began openly consorting with them, each using the other to their own purposes. The Tudeh now took to the streets with mass rioting and violence. On August 8, the Soviet Union, which had already provided Mossadeq with $20 million to keep his government afloat, now tied more strings and announced that they were engaged in negotiations with Iran for further economic aid. All the conditions favoring a Soviet coup were in place.

    This then was the situation in Iran that confronted American policy makers. It must have been frankly nightmarish. The Iran-Azerbaijan Crisis of 1946, where the Soviets not only refused to withdraw from the northern half of Iran that they had occupied during the war (the British occupied the south), but attempted to create two “People’s Democratic Republics” within Iran, alerted the Americans of Soviet designs on Iran. Having just watched the Baltic states, Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia, East Germany, Hungary, Poland, Rumania, China, Mongolia and North Korea all fall to Communism, the idea of an oil-rich country in a strategically vital region falling within the Soviet orbit would have been a catastrophe for the West, and anyone who thinks that the Soviets, who were in the process of deepening their claws into Iran, and helping to exploit the present instability to empower the Tudeh, would have kept the erratic and non-Communist Mossadeq in power or installed some Jeffersonian Democrat in his place, is delusional. Bottom line: Iran was going to have dictatorship one way or another, and better it be one favorable to America and the West, than not.

    What would have happened without either Soviet or American involvement has long been a subject for furious speculation. Certainly it is unlikely that the Tudeh at the time could have seized power without the Soviet assistance, yet they were gaining in power and influence, especially in their infiltration of the army. Their new alliance of convenience with Mossadeq merely added to this. (The CIA speculated that they could probably not seize power alone before the end of 1953). But the fact of the matter is that the Soviets were very much involved, had long been coveting Iran’s oil and their strategic location to posit their influence, and had presently been exploiting the chaos and laying the groundwork for converting Iran into a client state long before America became involved or even decided on a coup of their own.

    It should also not be forgotten that the coup could not have succeeded without the assistance of many internal Iranian factions, including the Sh’ia clerical establishment. The current regime goes to ludicrous lengths to deny this, but the truth is that Ayatollahs Kashani and Behbehani of the Mujahedeen-i-Islam (Warriors of Islam) party were instrumental in assisting the American-led coup, and it was unlikely to have succeeded without them. According to the wikipedia article on the Iran coup:

    “In the Islamic Republic, remembrance of the coup is quite different than that of history books published in the West, and follows the precepts of Ayatollah Khomeini that Islamic jurists must guide the country to prevent “the influence of foreign powers”.[124] According to historian Ervand Abrahamian, the government tries to ignore Mosaddegh as much as possible and allocates him only two pages in high school textbooks. “The mass media elevate Ayatollah Abol-Ghasem Kashani as the real leader of the oil nationalization campaign, depicting Mosaddegh as merely the ayatollah’s hanger-on.” This is despite the fact that Kashani came out against Mosaddegh by mid-1953 and “told a foreign correspondent that Mosaddegh had fallen because he had forgotten that the shah enjoyed extensive popular support.”[125] A month later, Kashani “went even further and declared that Mosaddegh deserved to be executed because he had committed the ultimate offense: rebelling against the shah, ‘betraying’ the country, and repeatedly violating the sacred law.”[126]

    As Edward Shirley, a former CIA agent who toured revolutionary Iran has written, “What the Ayatollahs did in 1953 with British and America help, they might have been able to do later without such help.” Shirley also wrote that the America-stole-democracy thesis is, “too convenient in its diabolization of the CIA and M16, and too Persian in its determination to make someone else responsible for failure.” (Edward Shirley, “Know Thine Enemy: A Spy’s Journey into Revolutionary Iran,” 1999)

    “- Fly a high ranking official – Sec. Clinton, at the least – to Tehran and deliver a full and public apology for the coup and subsequent oppression, perhaps along with reparations;”

    So we apologize and pay reparations to the regime whose establishment co-authored the coup, and whose 32-year rule has not only made Iran a reviled pariah state, but has exported terror, kidnapped and killed Americans, and has oppressed the Iranian people beyond even the worst excesses of the Shah? Right.

    “- Additionally, offer Iran normalized diplomatic relations, and as part of the package, both a non-aggression treaty and a broad agreement on a nuclear weapons free Middle East, to which the U.S. would pressure all states in the region – including Israel – to become signatories.”

    A nice vision. Really. But it ain’t gonna happen. The problem is that the Mullahs’ hostility toward us is beyond cure or remedy. Every Administration since Carter has sought to diplomatically engage this regime to no avail. President George W. Bush both directly and through third parties, made extensive efforts to engage the regime, again to no success.

    President Obama’s courtship of the Mullahs has followed a similar trajectory. The problems with Iran, he was sure, stemmed from America’s hawkish and aggressive posturing, from which Iran’s rulers, seeking only comity and peaceful co-existence, had naturally and understandably recoiled. All that was needed here was an open hand offering friendship and a soft word, and the mullahs, being rational, reasonable folks just like us, would overcome their distrust and hostility, see the errors of their ways, and get with the program. Engagement was the key.

    Obama’s Iran engagement has gone to pot, and in return for the open hand of friendship he extended to the Mullahs he got a clenched fist and a thumb in his eye. The Mullahs spat contempt on his friendly gestures, brutally suppressed a pro-democracy protest to a rigged election, and continued ahead unabashedly with their nuclear program.

    The President ignored the mullahs’ rebuffs, snored through the brutal crackdown of the pro-democracy Green Movement, and continued dreaming his no-more-nuclear-weapons dreams all the way to his fall-2009 UN speech even after an Iranian nuclear enrichment facility had been discovered at Qom, which he deemed too impolitic to mention, lest it derail his “engagement” fantasies with the mullahs.

    The notion that our problems with Iran stemmed from lack of engagement was always absurd. Obama, during his campaign in 2007-2008, repeatedly criticized the George W. Bush administration for not “talking” to Iran, but the fact of the matter is that the Bush administration compiled quite a resume of direct and indirect contacts in 2007-2008 while Obama was criticizing them for not doing so. As listed by Steven J. Rosen:

    “March 8, 2007 Rice’s Senior Adviser on Iraq, David Satterfield, affirms U.S. interest in discussions with Iran about the situation in Iraq

    March 10, 2007 – The US ambassador to Iraq, Zalmay Khalilzad, holds a meeting with an Iranian team at a conference of Iraq’s neighbors in Baghdad.

    April 25, 2007 EU High Representative for the Common Foreign and Security Policy Javier Solana and Iran’s top negotiator Ali Larijani held talks in Ankara.

    May 28, 2007 – The US Ambassador to Iraq, Ryan Crocker, and Iranian Ambassdor to Iraq Hassan Kazemi Qomi meet in Baghdad

    May 31, 2007 The EU foreign policy chief Javier Solana met Iranian negotiator Ali Larijani in Spain.

    June 22, 2007 Ali Larjani and Javier Solana met again in Geneva

    July 24, 2007 The US Ambassador to Iraq, Ryan Crocker, and his Iranian counterpart Hassan Kazemi Qomi, held a second round of talks in Baghdad

    August 6, 2007 The US Ambassador to Iraq, Ryan Crocker, and his Iranian counterpart Hassan Kazemi Qomi held a third round of talks in Baghdad

    August 20-21, 2007 extensive talks in Tehran between Iran and the UN’s nuclear agency,

    October 7, 2007. The top US military commander in Iraq, Gen David Petraeus, accused Iran’s ambassador, Hassan Kazemi Qomi of belonging to the Quds force, which he accused of “lethal involvement and activities” in Iraq, “providing the weapons, the training, the funding and in some cases the direction for operations” against U.S. and Iraqi forces.

    October 16, 2007, Russian President Vladimir Putin met Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and President Ahmadinejad at a summit meeting of five Caspian Sea nations in Iran.

    October 23, 2007 Solana and the new Iranian nuclear negotiator met in Rome

    November 20, 2007 The U.S. and Iran agree to fourth round of Crocker/Qomi talks

    November 30, 2007 Iran’s new chief nuclear negotiator Saeed Jalili met with Javier Solana, the European Union’s foreign policy chief, in London

    January 11-12, 2008 ElBaradei visited Iran and met Iran’s leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

    January 27, 2008 U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Zalmay Khalilzad attends multilateral meeting with Iranian Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki and Mojtaba Samare Hashemi, a top advisor to President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in Davos, Switzerland. State Department says it was “unauthorized.”

    May 7, 2008 Iranian foreign ministry spokesman Mohammad Ali Hosseini said there was no point in having talks with Washington as long as US forces continued attacking Shiite militias in Baghdad and therefore a fourth round of talks between the United States and Iran over the security situation in Iraq is unlikely to go ahead.

    June 14, 2008 Javier Solana, travelled to Iran with representatives from the E3 (France, Germany and the UK) and from China and Russia to present Iran a new offer for negotiations.

    July 19, 2008 Undersecretary of State for Political Affairs William Burns accompanied Solana and representatives of the E3+3 to meet with Iran’s chief nuclear negotiator Saeed Jalili in Geneva”

    • ToivoS on November 9, 2011, 6:03 pm

      The bottom line is that the CIA and MI6 were taking advantage of tumultuous political upheaval to help overthrow the Mossadegh regime. Your absurd 2000 word essay is a mix anti-communist propaganda that was part of that Western campaign and Pahlevi family justifications for the Shah’s 26 year reign of terror. This version of events has no political support anywhere in the world today outside of a tiny expatriot community of monarchist Iranians living in LA.

    • InAntalya on November 9, 2011, 6:15 pm

      You are joking, aren’t you?

      You state “the fact of the matter is that the Bush administration compiled quite a resume of direct and indirect contacts in 2007-2008 while Obama was criticizing them for not doing so.”

      And then you give a list of Bush contacts with Iran which includes:

      1 US expression of interest in discussions

      2 events where the US Ambassador and the Iranian Ambassador were at the same conference

      7 EU-Iranian meetings

      1 IAEA-Iranian meeting

      1 UN-Iranian meeting

      3 US Ambassador to Iraq and Iranian Ambassdor to Iraq meetings in Baghdad

      1 US military accusation against Iran

      1 Statement by Iran that there is no point in talking

      This is what you consider to be “quite a resume of direct and indirect” US-Iranian contacts by GWB???

  20. American on November 9, 2011, 4:13 pm

    Big things going on that may add to or subtract from Bomb Iran.
    Greece is definitely down, belly up and now Italy is down…EU is in domino motion..going, going, gone.
    This would mean less support from Europe for any more disruptive ME action…and it could also mean The Vultures see global collapse as a golden opportunity to grab more of the universe thru war.
    I can’t help but notice that the US is assuming Russia won’t be a problem either before or after an Iran attack. I think they are assuming wrong.
    If the US throws down on the ME Russia isn’t going to just to sit there unless they see the US is losing. Then they might wait out our ME death throes.
    If they see they could affect the outcome for the US in a ME war then they might come in at the tail end, after we have expended a large part of US force and tip the scale against us.

    • iamuglow on November 9, 2011, 6:08 pm

      “If the US throws down on the ME Russia isn’t going to just to sit there unless they see the US is losing. Then they might wait out our ME death throes.”

      This is arm chairing it, but if the US is going to smash its empire to pieces in quixotic ME adventures, I imagine the other powers will stand on the sidelines and let it play itself out. The US has become its own worst enemy.

  21. piotr on November 9, 2011, 6:39 pm

    I think Russia signals quite resolutely that she is opposed to any intervention in Iran (and Syria). Russia was also opposed to the intervention in Iraq but there it could do little. Iran is in totally different situation.

    Would Russia decide to supply Iran with fresh weapons, Caspian Sea forms a secure connection, with good ports both in Russia and Persia. Top of the line Russian missiles can blow our navy out of the water and airf orce, out of the sky. We are talking about heavy losses at the end of a very stretched logistic chain. Sure, not ALL ships and planes would go down, but we are talking about a serious war that we did not know since Vietnam.

    In Vietnam era USA was at the pinnacle of the financial and industrial abilities, now we live in much more reduced circumstances. And Vietnam could not threaten the principle sea route for oil exports.

    I think that the war option is so insane that nobody with a shred of responsibility is supporting it. But the establishment supports “containment”, which is a constant ratcheting of the crisis to throttle the development of Iran. If this really hurts Iran, I have no idea. For example, we can force Asians to develop international banking which is altogether independent from our banks — this is happening already. We can slow down foreign investment in Iranian oil, thus forcing them to expand non-oil exports — which is actually very healthy. And it is not like Greece was blessed with her ample access to the services of Wall Street banks — being frozen out would actually be healthier.

    In the era of expensive oil, tottering budgets in the West, industrial power shifting to China, Russia developing credible countermeasures to Western military technologies etc. the dream of global domination is over. We have a choice of a graceful exit, slow decay or finishing the imperial business in a violent huge confrontation. Given how democracies gravitate toward a compromise, we will have a slow decay.

    One may wonder how slow it will be.

    What will be the fate of the Zionist project in the post-imperial era? I understand that the master plan is that once resentment of Jews develops in USA the remaining Jews will emigrate to their new/old homeland in the Middle East and there they will thrive in the splendid isolation from the anti-Semitic world (while USA will be gripped by resurgent anti-Semitism, Israel will enjoy protective influence of the Zanu, check with Scientology).

  22. yourstruly on November 10, 2011, 1:03 am

    israel’s warmaking frenzy is a desperate attempt to prevent delegitimization. It aims to permanently seal the u.s-israel alliance by dragging uncle sam into a joint war upon iran, thereby essentially submerging its anti-zionists/pro-palestinian opponents in america beneath a tidle wave of patriotism, such that dissidents beware. happened during both world wars, but considerably less with the smaller wars that our government has gotten us into, post-ww II. the zionist entity israel figures that by going to war with the u.s. against a common enemy, that the american people will buy into the one about america’s & israel’s interests being the same, thereby nipping in the bud, any talk about israel-firsters being traitors. “how could we be traitors”, “no such thing as an israel-firster”, zionists will claim. “how could there be, isn’t this war a u.s.-israel joint venture, the alliance sealed in blood, with the armed forces of both countries, side by side, making the world safe for democracy & the free market?”

    and the israelis very well may pull this off

    how to prevent?

    one way would be for the occupy the world movement to size up the situation and decide by way of its leaderless (yet with everyone a leader) general assemblies, whether to take up the issue of a u.s-israeli war against iran

    what to do about a drumbeat for war that gets louder every day?

    what would such a war mean for america?

    its people?

    the occupy movement?

    for occupy the world, ominous implications, for sure, considering the fact that israel’s j-14 tent movement collapsed overnight just before mahmoud abbas put palestine’s case to the u.n. Did-in, that is, by an outpouring of patriotism generated by the zionist government’s claim that the plo’s pitch to the u.n was a threat to israel’s legitimacy.

    well, getting into another war might not be a threat to america’s legitimacy, but it would be very costly in terms of lives lost & resources wasted, not to mention unforeseen consequences, such as, among other scary scenarios, the onset of ww III

    will the occupy movement be up to the task?

    given, that time’s running out, what with perpetual war + global warming equals doomsday

    if not those of us in the occupy movement, who?

    & if not now, when?

    *long track record of similar crimes against humanity

  23. RoHa on November 10, 2011, 1:50 am

    What a complicated plan. The easiest way to avoid war with Iran is to not attack Iran.

  24. Theo on November 10, 2011, 8:53 am

    Yes, RoHa,

    however does our president have the guts to order Israel not to attack?
    If they still do we shoot down their planes on the way as they must fly over Iraq? That pussycat zionist uncle tom in the WH?

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