Thursday, March 11th, 2010
Joe Biden went to Israel not for the sake of peace or even to admonish the country for its plan to build 1,600 illegal settlement homes in East Jerusalem. Biden went there to talk about bombing Iran back to the Stone Age.
Israeli UN ambassador Gabriela Shalev.Gabriela Shalev, Israel’s U.N. ambassador, told the Associated Press earlier in the week that Biden’s visit to Israel and Israeli officials meeting in Washington are about agreeing on what to do about Iran. “Shalev said high-ranking Israeli and U.S. government and military leaders both in Washington and Jerusalem are currently discussing whether a military strike could stop Iran’s nuclear program.”
Ms. Shalev said she “was encouraged that Biden said Iran poses a threat to the United States.”
Sort of like the same way Iraq posed a threat to the United States before the U.S. invaded, wrecked the country’s already enfeebled civilian infrastructure, and killed over a million Iraqis.
Iraq posed absolutely zero threat to the United States — it could hardly threaten its nearest neighbors — but that didn’t stop the Arab-hating neocons from inventing preposterous lies they fed to the New York Times and the rest of the corporate media in order to set the stage for invasion and mass murder.
Shalev broadened Iran’s supposed threat. “I say even more — Iran is a threat to the whole world.” Translation: Iran is a threat to Israel’s hegemonic dominance of the Middle East.
Israel has invaded and occupied Lebanon, bombed a nuclear reactor in Iraq, stolen land from Syria, and engaged in numerous border provocations, all of it either tacitly or directly supported by the United States.
“Israel clearly prepares itself to seek overtly a hegemony over the entire Middle East,” Israeli Israel Shahak wrote in 1997, “without hesitating to use for the purpose all means available, including nuclear ones.”
Israel has around 400 nuclear weapons while Iran has zero. Israel has used its “Samson option” to threaten and intimidate its Arab and Muslim neighbors. Israeli leaders created the term in the mid-1960s, inspired by the Biblical figure Samson, who destroyed a Philistine temple, killing himself and thousands of Philistine enemies. Israel admits it has used the threat of nuclear annihilation for “compellent purposes,” that is to say to force others to accept its political demands.
Unlike Israel, Iran has accepted supervision of its nuclear program under the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty. “Israel opposes any challenge to its nuclear hegemony since not only would it be less able to use its nuclear threat to keep confiscated lands, but fear of Iran actually might cause citizens to leave Israel and investment to dry up,” writes Carol Moore.
According to Shalev, Israel no longer has patience for the diplomatic game and believes sanctions are useless. Israel would like the Security Council to approve “crippling” sanctions — making the people of Iran hurt like the people of Iraq were seriously hurt under sanctions (ultimately to the tune of more than 500,000 dead children) — but Shalev conceded “the chances now seem grim.”
So confident is Israel on the futility of sanctions, it plans to distribute gas masks to the public in preparation for an Iranian retaliatory attack.
Meanwhile, Bush era retread, Robert Gates, the Secretary of Defense, has engaged in war council talks with Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah and plans to talk with Abu Dhabi’s Crown Prince Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed al-Nahayan about “U.S. efforts to push for U.N. sanctions against Iran,” according to Reuters.
“Speaking earlier in the day at a U.S. military base in southwest Asia, Gates said Iran was seeking to undermine U.S. efforts in Afghanistan and ‘make our lives harder’ by supporting the Taliban,” the austere religious fanatics installed by the United States. In his memoirs, From the Shadows, Gates stated that the CIA began to aid the Mujahedeen in Afghanistan 6 months before the Soviet intervention. A large number of the Mujahedeen would eventually form the Taliban with ample support and funding from the U.S., Britain, and the Saudis.
It certainly appears the U.S. is preparing to work with Israel and will eventually attack Iran or actively support an Israeli attack on the country. However, if a war game conducted at the Saban Center for Middle East Policy, part of the Washington-based Brookings Institution in Washington, is any indication the affair will go bad in a big way.
“With diplomacy failing and precious intelligence just received about two new secret Iranian nuclear facilities, Israel launches a pre-emptive strike against Teheran’s nuclear complex. The strike is successful, wiping out six of Iran’s key sites and setting back its suspected quest for a bomb by years,” McClatchy reported in February. “But what happens next isn’t pretty… Iran attacks Israel, both directly and through its proxies in Lebanon and the Gaza Strip. It misinterprets U.S. actions as weakness and mines the Straits of Hormuz, the world’s chief oil artery. That sparks a clash and a massive U.S. military reinforcement in the Persian Gulf.”
American political analyst George Friedman told Press TV in 2008 “that a war against Iran would likely result in Tehran retaliating with attacks on oil tankers in the Strait of Hormuz, a strategic passage for oil transfer from the Persian Gulf states…. Crude oil prices may subsequently rise to ‘more than $300 a barrel’, which will be ‘cataclysmic to the global economy and stock markets’ even over a short period.”
In other words, if you think the economy is bad now it will be far worse after the United States helps its “friend” Israel attack Iran.
Iran is not taking the latest round of pre-war talks in Israel, the United States, and the Gulf states lightly. From the Middle East Newsline on March 9: “Iran was said to have been deploying a range of naval assets for a massive strike on its Gulf neighbors. A report asserted that Iran has been acquiring and deploying a range of missiles and naval platforms to strike at shipping and energy facilities of its Gulf Arab neighbors. The report by the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments said Iran wants to intimidate the United States from operating in the Gulf.”
More like they are preparing to defend themselves.
Any chance at averting a major war is looking more bleak with every passing day.