Iran Showing Its True Colors

iran khomeini flagI admit to falling victim to a silly desire…. hope…. as the elections in Iran finally reached the day for citizens to cast ballots. I really believed there for a bit that the elections would accomplish two things. I thought they might actually remove Mahmoud Ahmadinejad from power and simultaneously show Iran to have progressed past the islamic theocracy that has gripped that nation in an iron fist of repression and kept the nation from advancing out of the middle ages. But those hopes were dashed with the returns coming in and a victor declared before the polls even closed. Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was reelected by a wide margin. My shoulders slumped just a little bit, and then I started reading all of the papers throughout the region and I realized that this election might actually be stolen, unlike the bogus claims from Algorians in 2000 (That’s right, I said it)

Ayatollah with Muslim WomanI have seen several different numbers on the election. But they all seem to center around the numbers of 62% of the vote going to incumbent hate-monger Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, while independent reformist party candidate Mir-Hossein Mousavi received 34%. Mousavi immediately called the election results fraudulent, and I tend to believe that this could be true, especially since he even lost his hometown by a large margin. That just seems unlikely in their culture. But I certainly am not one with more information than anyone else on the results. For all I know they are dead accurate. I just know what I am reading on different news sites globally.

It isn’t the actual results that are important any longer. Ahmadinejad is in power and will remain in power. But the feeling of fraud has swept through the Iranian population and sparked protests immediately. As I expected it didn’t take long for the Iranian government to begin to crack down on the protests and start quieting the rebellion. This is a regular thing in these types of countries. The people get upset, they protest, throw a few rocks at police, set a few cars on fire, and the government sends them home, arrests a few, and does the regular “move along, nothing to see here” routine.  You know just like L.A. when the Lakers win a championship.

But as we are now seeing, that is not what happened at all. This time the government reacted far more strongly than that. We’ll get to that, but what was happening leading up to the election?

Two screenshots Iranian state-run television illustrating the apparent decrease in votes for candidate Mohsen Rezai over a four hour period. The upper picture shows Rezai with 633,048 votes; the lower shows the same candidate with 587,913 votes later that day.

Two screenshots Iranian state-run television illustrating the apparent decrease in votes for candidate Mohsen Rezai over a four hour period. The upper picture shows Rezai with 633,048 votes; the lower shows the same candidate with 587,913 votes later that day.

Well, plenty of violence was what was happening, along with plenty of shenanigans. On June 1, Mousavi’s campaign headquarters were torched. No one came forward to claim responsibility for the arson. In late May, the Iranian government shut down access to facebook in the country because the application was being used to spread campaign advertising for Mousavi and against Ahmadenijad. Finally on election day there was some sort of jamming going on in Tehran that kept anyone from using cell phones in the city, and the BBC reported heavy jamming that even limited their ability to broadcast anything. It certainly starts to make one wonder what kind of stuff was going on behind the scenes.

In keeping a running tab throughout the day on the state run television news site, the results started to come in and vote totals were being updated as the votes came in. But there were anomolies starting to pop up and be seen by those who were paying attention. At roughly 9:30 am opponent Mohsen Rezaihad amassed just over 633,000 votes. 4 hours later, about 46,000 of those votes simply disappeared and appeared to be added to Ahmadenijad’s totals. That never changed. It certainly appeared that the votes were being taken away from other candidates and given to the incumbent. I would have to imagine that things like this, which I certainly cannot verify but have read tons of, contributed greatly to the feeling of the people in opposition to Ahmadenijad that they were having an election stolen from them. Mousavi came out and said that there was massive fraud happening in the election before the polls even closed for the day.

So now you have at least a little bit better of an idea as to why the people of Iran are somewhat upset with the outcome of this election. And you can understand a little bit better why they decided to take to the streets and protest what looks, at least from their perspective, to be a fraudulent election. Just importantly you can see how the state has had a hand in the election from banning facebook as an effective tool to jamming phones and finally re-allocating votes from one person to another. And that set up the scenes that we have seen follow.

Protesters took to the streets and the protests were just like any other, that is until the Iranian Basij got involved. They’re the most feared men on the streets of Iran. The pro-government Basij militia has over 5 million members according to the government and they are a part of and answer to the Republican Guard (would have called them the Democratic Guard but they would have surrendered to the protesters immediately  🙂  Sorry, couldn’t help myself) . Witnesses say the force has unleashed its violence in shadowy nighttime raids, attacking suspected opposition sympathizers with axes, daggers, sticks and other crude weapons. At least once, the militiamen opened fire on a crowd of strone-throwing protesters. Iranian State media said seven were killed in that incident. Some Basijis shave their beards and wear jeans to blend in with opposition supporters, infiltrating a crowd and then attacking. These are a bad group of men who are eager to do damage to protesters in exchange for easier entrance into universities and better loans for future businesses.

Neda Soltan

Neda Soltan

Images and videos have been covertly pouring out of Iran over the last ten days or so, showing Basijis attacking and beating protesters, damaging dissenter’s properties, and even killing. Almost none of this, however, can be verified well given the state control that limits everything coming into and going out of the country. But there is little doubt that people are dying in these demonstrations. A video of the shooting of  26-year-old Neda Soltan and her subsequent death was posted on youtube late last week and the nation has rallied around her death. She is being hailed as a martyr by the protesters. In the space of just hours, the philosophy student became the image of Iran’s democratic protests. All mosques were given a direct order from the government barring them from holding any memorial services for Neda (a violation of islamic law, even for the Supreme Leader to say so), and her family was threatened with grave consequences if anyone gathered to mourn her. They held a quiet family only burial on Sunday. But the guy who finished 3rd in the election is seizing the opportunity. He has called for a mass mourning on Thursday night for Soltan, a direct violation of the Supreme Leader’s edict. That could end up being a very ugly night.

Ayatollah Ali Khamenei

Ayatollah Ali Khamenei

One of the toughest parts in reading all of these things for Americans is understanding that the government is set up quite differently in Iran. The President doesn’t have nearly the power in Iran as they do in America. Iran’s system is one of limited democracy constrained by Shiite clerics, who have ultimate authority. The Supreme Ruler is the absolute authority and final say in just about everything. Iran has had only two Supreme Leaders: Grand Ayatollah Imam Ruhollah Khomeini (We all remember this crazy cat!), of the Islamic Republic, and the current Grand Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. The Supreme Leader has an ultimate veto power over most decisions made by any other factions within the government structure. In addition, any candidate that seems to disagree with the policies of the Supreme leader will get disqualified by either him or one of his vetting agencies. In other words, no matter what else happens or appears to be true of the Iranian government structure, this guy is the HMFIC, big cahuna, final say, dictator of the country. You can learn more about Irans governmental structure HERE.

The country’s highest electoral authority, the Guardian Coucil, agreed last week to investigate some opposition complaints of problems in the voting. They already announced today that they have found 50 sites with issues in reporting. Time will tell if they find more, or if it even matters. The likelihood is that this is nothing more than an appeasement aimed at hoping the protesters will give up and go home. The Supreme Leader gave a fiery sermon on Friday that called on the protests to cease immediately, or protesters would face dire consequences.  The Republican Guard ordered demonstrators to “end the sabotage and rioting activities” and said their resistance is a “conspiracy” against Iran. On Sunday, acting joint chief of the armed forces Gen. Gholam Ali Rashid issued a thinly veiled warning to Mousavi, saying “we are determined to confront plots by enemies aimed at creating a rift in the nation.

Iran ProtestSo Iran is spinning out of control at the moment. Chants of “death to Khamenei” have started popping up in rallies, one of the bolder moves by the protesters against the Supreme Leader. My guess is that this is going to get worse, possibly much worse, before we start to see this settle down. And as a result of the growing chaos, we now see the President being pressured to take a hard line stance and criticized because he has, thus far, taken the high road and what appears to be the weak road. But I say not so fast.  Obama is clearly in a fix at this point. He is trying to find the right balance between idealism and reality—supporting the democratic process and the forces of reform but trying not to totally alienate the Ahmadinejad regime and its backers in the powerful Islamic clergy.

Despite the GOP’s clammoring for a harder line stance, I am not so sure that they are thinking that position through all the way. In fact, I think the Republicans are so eager to oppose Obama in this case and prove their foreign relations superiority, they are giving us a glimpse of the lack of foresight that got us in a lot of hot water in the first place. Obama, to his credit, has moved cautiously and slowly. To be honest I think that thus far he has handled this situation as well as could be done, at least in the stuff that I have read so far. I would give his administration’s actions and words through the first 10 days of this situation an “A”, in fact. Granted there is a long way to go before this is done, and I do believe that there will be plenty of opportunities for him to fall down if he isn’t careful, but I am impressed to see him take his time and think about his actions.

Backing the protesters any more than what has been done so far would create a situation where the Iranian government gets the ability to claim that America has again interfered in their Democratic process and arrogantly passed judgement on the Iranian people. Like a family where a brother can punch a sister, but would destroy anyone else who touched her, Iran could quickly be galvanized and united should it appear that there is any form of external meddling. The President cannot ignore the images and videos he sees. And he is right to call on Iran to ensure the safety of those voicing dissent. But picking a side could be disastrous. And the Republicans should pay attention and perhaps they could learn a little something about how the first action doesn’t always have to be one of “getting involved”. I know many of you think Obama is weak. Maybe he is and maybe he isn’t. That is a debate for another day. But I think in this case, he is taking the right steps so far.

The Results of the Last Iranian Revolution

The Results of the Last Iranian Revolution

With that said….. school is in session Mr. President. Because while you may have thought you knew everything that there was to know about foreign relations, a lot of your campaign statements told me you don’t. While the Democrats have served notice that they are willing to apologize and “talk” their way through things, they now need to take a serious look as the reality of the world plays out. The President came in with an aggressive domestic agenda and an agenda internationally that I felt showed an arrogance and lack of understanding of the reality of the world. North Korea and Iran are presenting the President with the opportunity to find out just how much he and his new administration know, or don’t know, about what the reality is in the rest of the world. Rhetoric always sounds great on the campaign trail. The people of the world may treat you like a rock star. Now we’ll see how you do with the people who see you as a naive political rookie to be played with and manipulated.

I have to be honest and say that I hate to see what is happening in Iran. People dying for voicing their opinion. I watched the video of Neda Soltan dying, and it was heartbreaking. And yet people in America think they have it so bad. I didn’t see government police opening fire on the tax day tea party crowds. And I am going to do my best to not be a hypocrite and state simply that regardless of what is happening over there, it is not one bit of our damn business. Obama is right to say very little. And Republicans are now angry with him for not sticking his nose where it doesn’t belong, after constantly bitching and whining that he sticks oversteps his authority. I despise the Iranian government for doing the things that they are doing. But it is not our right to interfere on what a sovereign nation does. I would love to hear from Republicans exactly what their plan of action here is. What exactly is their rationale for doing something other than what the President is currently doing. I think you all know I have zero issue saying so when I think this political rookie President makes a mistake. I also have no issue with saying when I think he is doing the right thing either.

I know some of you will disagree with me. And that is OK. I want to hear what you all think. What do you think is the right course of action both for us as a country and for Obama as the President? Do you think that this will spin out of control within Iran and end up being a revolution on the scale of the 1979 Revolution? How different do all of you see the situation with government in Iran and government here in America? Does this display of brutality simply once again show us that the islamic leadership in the middle east operates without moral principles? I don’t ask any of these questions to push anyone one way or the other. I am sincerely interested in what everyone thinks.

Whatever god you pray to. Whatever it is that you believe. Send some good thoughts to those in Iran caught in a battle between religious theocracy and individual liberty. We cannot tell another country what to do. But we can certainly hope that one day they will all get to a place where their people are free, because they certainly are not right now.

Comments

  1. Cyndi P says:

    The people of Iran are dying in the streets for their freedom, while in America, the people cannot surrender their freedom fast enough.

    I’m unable to give Obama the benefit of the doubt on this one, USW. Its good that you can.

    I’m on the side of the Iranian people.

    • I would believe that if I didn’t know that a single ayatollah is in fact the only real ruler in Iran, all others are hand picked by that one ruler.

      Maybe the Shah wasn’t such a bad deal after all – but that is a question to ask Jimmy Carter . . .

      The freedom the Iranians are looking for isn’t even a sliver of what we have here, and they are willing to die for it.

      Reports are now coming out with Iranian protesters shouting “Death to the Ayatollah!” For them, uttering that statement is nothing short of a death penalty should they be identified and hunted down.

      Obama won’t do anything but say after it is all over that it was a shame that their freedom fight was a lost cause from the beginning . . .

      • G.A., and the other vet’s

        Is this a situation where we should supply weapons to the rebels?
        Maybe those seized in Mexico.

        What has been the results of our meddling in the past? How many times did we achieve our goals and how many times did we step in it?

        • USWeapon says:

          If you are talking about Iran specifically, there has never been a time where we were eventually shown that we “stepped in it”. As a country, we should stay out of this. I always imagine how we would feel if someone came in and gave support to a faction of our country who tried to overthrow the government and institute something different than a democracy.

          • As has been stated, our backing the Shaw, long term did not work out too well, or we stepped in it. And as discussing with Flag at #25, it seems we are still trying to incite revolution. I do not see this as a bad thing. They are promoting violence in Gaza, Iraq, etc. If we stop meddling, would they?

            But did not mean Iran only, Bay of Pigs comes to mind. Should the US adopt a strict non-interference policy? Have we had any successes?

            • Naten53 says:

              What about our policy of the Monroe Doctine in 1823, or “The 1904 Roosevelt Corollary to the Monroe Doctrine, proclaiming a right for the United States to intervene to stabilize weak states in the Americas, further weakened European influence in Latin America and established U.S. regional hegemony.”

              The financial backing of the Allies durring wwi and wwii before we entered.

              ” the policy of aiding anti-Soviet Mujahideen forces in Afghanistan (Operation Cyclone)”

            • USWeapon says:

              Sorry…. I mis-typed that and just saw it now. There has never been a time when we have not been eventually shown to have stepped in it. Always a mistake to intervene in the past.

    • Barberian says:

      Good morning Cindy P,

      The price of freedom has always required the supreme sacrifice. It requires the willingness of the people to give such a sacrifice to ensure that they are able to hold such freedom once it has been won. If another country makes the sacrifice for them (the USA armed service men) the likelihood of that people holding their freedom is unlikely.

      I fully support any people that are willing and have proven that they are ready to give “the full measure” for their freedom. But I’m from Missouri so ‘Show Me” how committed you are in gaining your freedom. Then I will through my hat in gladly.

      As far as the American people are throwing their freedoms away, “you never want a drink of water till the well runs dry”. The well isn’t dry but the rope on the bucket is getting shortend every day… time for a new rope.

    • Don’t get caught up in the hype…have anyone not realized that the protestors that you see on TV are fluent in English, all signs in English…true Iranians don’t speak much English. Do I think this is propoganda to get another war started; war=money and control…Yes I do! BO says we are not going to be involved but rest assure, we will. Has he fallen through on any of his promises to date…yeah, nothing but his Civilian Army that he is in the process of creating. Google H.R. 675: Building Obama’s Civilian National Security Force. At approximately the same time, the DoD issued a Defense Directive 1404.10 (read PDF http://www.dtic.mil/whs/directives/corres/pdf/140410p.pdf ) that establishes a “DoD Civilian Expeditionary Workforce” and rescinds a prior Clinton era directive dealing with the emergency use of civilian personnel. The Obama administration describes the Civilian Expeditionary Workforce as follows:
      Members of the DoD Civilian Expeditionary Workforce shall be organized, trained, cleared, equipped, and ready to deploy in support of combat operations by the military; contingencies; emergency operations; humanitarian missions; disaster relief; restoration of order; drug interdiction; and stability operations of the Department of Defense in accordance with DoDD 3000.05

      We are fighting 2 wars, have been meddling in Iran and if we touch down, get ready for WWIII. Not to mention that Big Brother is at war with “we the people” as well.

  2. Iran and North Korea = Axis of Evil, Dubya was right on that count.

    I totally agree with USW. I think this is one issue that the BO administration is actually doing right. But probably not on purpose, they are so use to back pedaling from any foreign power, I’m surprised Iran hasn’t gotten an apology for what we’ve said in the last 10 days.

    Its a tragedy that people are dying. But at least they are dying for what they believe in. After all it was an election (legitimate or not) and a winner was declared. The people voting for the loser are angry and now are up in arms. Nothing would have changed in Iran if Mir-Hossein Mousavi would have won anyway. The Supreme Council rules and until that changes Iranians are stuck where they are. It would take a much bigger uprising and probably a death toll in the millions for that to change.

    Americans take for granted all of their freedoms and almost seem shocked when the rest of the world doesn’t have them. So shocked that they put down their bag of chips and go get another beer before changing the channel.

  3. Summary of the Iranian Government from Fox News.

    Supreme Leader (Rahbar)

    In its history, Iran has had only two Supreme Leaders: Grand Ayatollah Imam Ruhollah Khomeini, of the Islamic Republic, and the current Grand Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

    The term for the Supreme Leader is a lifetime unless reassigned by the Assembly of Experts. The Supreme Leader is elected by the Assembly of Experts and is more powerful than the president. As the commander of all the armed forces, he can declare both War and Peace.

    He also appoints the heads of many powerful posts, including the Head of the Judiciary along with the six clerics of the 12 member Guardian Council. He also controls the Expediency Discernment Council and can prevent the legitimization of any law, and he can dismiss the president after the Supreme Court holds him guilty of the violation of his constitutional duties, or after a vote of the Parliament testifying to his incompetence.

    President (Raeess Jomhoor) and Cabinet
    Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is the current president, and his “First Vice-President” is Parviz Davoodi.

    The president is elected by the direct vote of the people in a national election. Candidates for the presidency must be approved by the Council of Guardians. The president is responsible for the functions of the executive branch; such as signing treaties and agreements with other countries and international organizations; the national planning and budget and state employment affairs; appointing ministers, governors, and ambassadors subject to the approval of the Parliament.

    The president does not have full control over foreign policy, the armed forces, or the nuclear policy of the Iranian state, which are under the control of the Supreme Leader. The president is elected for a four-year term and may not serve for more than two consecutive terms. However, he can run again after waiting at least one term.

    Assembly of Experts (Majlise Khobregan)
    The current chairman of this assembly is former President Hashemi Rafsanjani. All Assembly of Expert candidates are vetted by the Guardian Council and then are elected by direct public vote. They are charged with electing and removing the Supreme Leader of Iran and supervising his activities. The members serve an eight-year term. This Assembly has 86 Islamic scholar members, known as “Mujtahid.” The assembly must meet for at least two days, twice annually.

    Guardian Council (Shoraye Negahban)
    The current chairman of this council is Ahmad Jannati. Six of the members of the Guardian council are clerics who are selected by the Supreme Leader and can be dismissed by Supreme Leader. The other six members are lawyers and are elected by the Parliament from a vetted list of candidates approved by the Head of the Judicial Power. The members of this council are charged with interpreting the Constitution of Iran, and vetting of the candidates to the Assembly of Experts, the President and the Parliament. Also any bill passed by the Parliament must be reviewed and approved by the Guardian Council. If any law is rejected, it will be passed back to the Parliament for amendments and if the Parliament and the Council of Guardians cannot decide on the bill, it is passed up to the Expediency Council for a decision. The members of this council are selected for a six-year term.

    Expediency Discernment Council (Majmaeye Tashkheese Maslehate Nezam)
    The current chairman of this assembly is former President Hashemi Rafsanjani. The Expediency Discernment Council is an administrative assembly appointed by the Supreme Leader set up to resolve differences or conflicts between the Parliament and the Council of Guardians. It also plays an advisory role to the Supreme Leader. The members serve a five-year term.
    Currently the council has 28 official members.

    Parliament (Majlis)

    All Parliament candidates are vetted by the Guardian Council and are elected by direct public vote. Parliament is unicameral, meaning it has only one legislative or parliamentary chamber. It duties are to draft legislation, ratify international treaties, and approve the national budget. The Parliament can force the dismissal of cabinet ministers by no-confidence votes and can impeach the President for misconduct in office. All legislation from this assembly must be approved by the Guardian Council. This assembly has 290 representatives, five of whom represent non-Muslim religious minorities and are elected for a four-year term. The current speaker of the Parliament is Ali Larijani.

    Head of the Judiciary (Ghoveyeh Ghazayeh)
    The Head of the Judiciary is appointed by the Supreme Leader.
    He vets the six lawyer candidates for the 12 member Guardian Council that then the Parliament chooses from. He is responsible for the establishment of the organizational structure of the judicial system; drafting judiciary bills for parliaments; hiring, firing promoting and assigning judges. Judges cannot be dismissed without a trial. The Head of the Judiciary serves a five-year term. The current Head of the Judiciary is Mahmoud Shahroudi.

  4. I will have to agree with USW on this one. It is a no win situation for us to get involved. Iran’s people need to deal with their governement in their own way. I also saw the video of Neda dying, truly heartbreaking to see. But also uplifting, giving ones life to something they believe in so strongly.
    I do believe that North Korea is a threat of greater concern with us, as I see it.

  5. Ray Hawkins says:

    This situation in Iran sucks – plain and simple. Now – you all know I am an Obama supporter – but I’m not sure ‘keep the lips zipped’ qualifies as a foreign policy of the year status (sorry USW – I always have to disagree no?). The days and weeks to come will be the real deal and as I offered for NK – I sure hope there is a strong foreign policy team – and I’m not talking Joe Biden here. The last thing we need is a Joe Biden gaffe now. Anyone now if there are other M.E. nations closely aligned with Iran that can lean on them a bit? The Saudis? Anyone else? Keep on eye on Israel in this – my guess is they are getting very nervous.

    • Ray,

      Damnit, why do you have to go and say things I have to agree with. I think there is little he can say, but there are things that need to be said. A call for restraint and peaceful resolutions from both sides. Request the UN
      (can’t believe I said that) to oversee a recount.

      Bad time for the Sec. of State to bump her elbow.

    • Iranian refugees pour into Canada and have been for years but unfortunately I know none myself to ask. I do however know a Lebanese businessman (best pizza in town) who when asked grows pale at the mention of Iran. His opinion is that all fear the theocracy that is Iran opening up shop in their respective countries and “we” here simply don’t understand this.

      • Black Flag says:

        An Iranian immigrant family built and own the two largest malls in North America – West Edmonton Mall and the Mall of America.

        PS: They are also Jewish.

        PSS: The patriarch built and owned the complex in Tehran where the Potsdam Conference was held (where Churchill, Roosevelt and Stalin divided up the world between them).

  6. All;

    Iran is best left to their own demise or success, which ever fate prevails. It is not our business or right to say. They have some unorthidox beliefs, (at least as we Americans see them) but that does not warrant outsider involvment. I say that we should watch and wait. Depending upon the outcome we can then decide our relations with Iran and act accordingly. If the current regime stays in power and maintains its current standard of repression, then we should refrain from interacting in any way with them. I believe any support (official or unofficial) of a repressive nation is hypocrisy.

    Just like NK we can ignore them both economically and militarially, letting other countries do as they please. Understand the caviat is only up to a point that there is clear and imminent danger to America or its friends; then we step in and remove the danger. (And I know a lot of you are going to say “who determines that danger level”, but that is a point of discussion for another time. For conversations sake, lets just say that its at a level clear and obvious to the majority)

    There are those out there who will call for immediate action so that the repressed people garner rights and freedom, because that is the moral thing to do, but I would caution our involvement anytime in the near future; as we may wind up supporting an even more repressing regime.

    This may be a lot like watching two school bully’s battleing it out for ‘baddest bully’ award. Regardless of who wins you still have a bully to deal with.

  7. jenniedonwendytom says:

    From one perspective, all we as Americans need to do is sit back and watch. The Iranian people are doing what they need to – throw the bums out. From another, it is a crying shame to watch the news and see a, ‘president,’ of the U.S.A. refuse to take a solid stance supporting Freedom, Democracy, Liberty, and Free-Will. I would *much* rather have a President who gets on national television and states very clearly that America is there for the Iranian people should they call for us; that America supports the fight for Democracy, no matter where in the world it may be.

    We do not have such a President; instead we have Mr. Obama, who quotes the Koran, visits Mosques, and consorts with the likes of Chavez. Instead – we have Mr. Obama, who has nearly made America insolvent. I can only declare myself to be a member of the Independent Party, even though our current Administration, as well as both Democrats and Republicans oppress this party through the voting process at this time.

    I am personally ashamed of Mr. Obama and Congress – *not* the people of America. This nation is now headless, flailing about and worse because the, ‘leadership,’ in this nation is inflicting long-term damage as it babbles about. How much longer will it be before the people of this world, to include America, finally decide the losers in Chief are incompetent and we all decide to, ‘throw the bums out?’

    I wonder…

    • Jenniejennie, who can I turn to?

      What do you think of Bush’s handling of the Russian invasion of Georgia?

      What do you think of Bush possibly inciting that situation?

      If Obama takes a strong stance, will it help, or will it make things worse?
      I can agree he should have more to say, but it needs to be carefully stated, calling for a peaceful resolution, and restraint from both sides. There is no way we will be giving military support.

      Basic firearms safety, you never point a firearm at something you do not intend to shoot. Foreign relations, don’t call for the overthrow of a government you may have to bargain with on nuclear weapons.

      • Danak13 says:

        “don’t call for the overthrow of a government you may have to bargain with on nuclear weapons.” Sorry, but the world of D13 says that there are no negotiations to be had. I would not negotiate one iota with this country from this point on. I actually think we should let Europe handle this one. Let Saudi Arabia and Egypt and Syria handle this one. They are scared to death of this man. After all, he is closer to them. I actually think that we should take a back seat, allow Iran to obtain nuclear weapons and let them use it… they will. Make no mistake about it. Obama will be the reason of nuclear proliferation in the future. His weak policies will make it happen. HOWEVER, on the elections in Iran…there is nothing to be done. It is an Iranian problem and the mullahs and clerics have control. They kill, they torture (not the non torture of water boarding but REAL torture), they isolate families, and eliminate opposition. It is a simple way of life there. Obama should be a little stronger in his rhetoric…but do we back off because we have to deal with them in the future? Sigh!!!!! We will and history will prove me correct…Iran will get the nuke…and it will use it. Mark it down.

        • D13,

          I like your thoughts on this, but what about Israel, that they advocate destroying? They send “freedom fighters” into Iraq and Syria, supply arms to Hamas.

          I would also endorse staying as far out of this as possible, but not at Israel’s expense.

          • Danak13 says:

            Therein lies a problem. How far do we support Israel? I think that we support Israel in arms and ammo and financial. Do not get drawn in on a war that they (Israel)can certainly win. Egypt will not attack Israel…neither will Syria nor will they form an alliance to do so. Iran will probably try to do this but it will be a long distance war. Iran does not have the capacity to transport troops to that region. We have the task force already in place to check Iran and they know it. They have an army, like NK, but not the capacity to use it much beyond their borders. Israel can take care of herself. Let it.

            The best thing that Israel could do, in the world of D13…is nothing. Syria will finally, and already is, getting a belly full of Iran. They hate Iran but tacitly endorse them. But in a full fight….no.

            There is no negotiation that is going to work…I don’t give hoot and holler how charismatic Obama is. He is nothing and the world knows it.

        • Baseball95 says:

          I have to agree with D13 here. Iran will be their own worst enemy if we just let them do it to themselves. They will be the instrument of their own destruction.

          No matter what this Administration or even the whole US Government does, they will be accused of meddling in Iran’s internal affairs. Iran has already accused us of it.

          EHG’s advice is to stay the hell out of it. Condemn the violence against their own people but above all, DO NOT get involved. If they want to accuse us, SO WHAT?

          I don’t however, believe we have anything to worry about with Obama. All he will do is say some appeasing comments and that will be all. The whole terrorist world knows by now that he ain’t got no stones to do anything but issue stern comments. Even IF this WAS something we needed to be involved in. Which it isn’t.

          P.S. I just noticed I was logged in as Baseball95, but this is EHG.

  8. Naten53 says:

    I tend to call myself a isolationist in terms of foreign policy. I agree with Obama waiting it out to react. We do not have an embassy in Iran why should we get involved with their affairs when they have shown us that they do not want us there.

    I may be more like an isolationist but that does not mean that we should not keep an eye on Iran and North Korea and countries that have poor human rights and react when need be. Like Common Man said above, what determines the deciding factor. It is not clearly black and white when it comes to getting involved in other countries affairs. Remember most Americans supported invading Iraq when we were told there were weapons of mass destruction. Knowing what we know now, we probably wouldn’t have supported the invasion, but neither of those facts change that Saddam was oppressive and cruel to his people. How would you feel if Russia, or France, or Switzerland came to us and said “we support the Puppy Killer Party (fictitious) and we will do anything we can to get them in power.”

    I think saying that we support peace and democratic republics is the best and only thing we should do and it is up to foreign nations to determine their best course of action. Not some hick from Texas or a Chicago lawyer.

    • Danak13 says:

      Smile when you say hick….I am not a supporter of Bush, but I am from Texas.We know how to win our independence.

  9. Idon’t think this will get to the blog. My power isn’t as spiffy as most! But I’m chuggin’! But thank you for the link. I will return to read often. I also enjoyed your thoughtful article. 😀

  10. Bama dad says:

    Good morning all. I am with USW on this one. For all who are jumping up and down saying we have to help these people gain their freedom, look at Iranian history. It was the good old USA and others that helped overthrow a democratic government in Iran in the early 1950’s and install the Shah because he was our man to fight communism. If we jump in with both feet it will be easy for the current Iranian government villains to rally the Iranian people against us and not the election. The only thing that Obama can do is offer moral support and encouragement. Words are about all we can use for ammunition right now. It is up to the Iranian people to determine their destiny, not ours. If they revolt, then we can offer more than words. We can’t be seen as meddling in Iran’s internal affairs, it would be counter productive. Our meddling in the 50’s helped set up the government that Iran has today.

  11. Gulp! I got on! 😯 I do not wish to be flippant, but if I can actually make it here, God grant a better day for Iran as well. We watch what happens In Teheran. I still feel a solid voice of support early on would have been perfectly appropriate since the world is so joined so quickly with news now.

  12. Robert C says:

    Send in the ACLU.
    I know that’s not a very good answer, remember TR “Walk softley but carry a big stick”.

  13. In reading the comments posted, each one has something in common with the last and something to argue. It is so important in this matter, to speak one’s mind and learn the general opinion of the mass population. The U.S. has long intervened in Iranian political ongoings and perhaps not always for the better of its citizens. I agree may there be a better day for the Iranian people, but hold that they will make this better day for themselves. Please help America hear what you think is right. Poll here, or create your own poll so that those who support your opinions can make this known. Sometimes its good to become a statistic, power in numbers can go far.

    http://urtak.com/u/IranRevolution

  14. Edward@6:01am. #2. I think you’re right. POTUS was on apology tour with his first sort of ambiguous statement. The word,,meddle,,was put in there, so that may have salved propagandists everywhere as an Iranian regime control mechanism.

  15. TexasChem says:

    Obama’s silence in the face of the violent and brutal Islamic crackdown on the Iranian people peacefully demonstrating for freedom is in keeping with Obama’s previous silences:

    1. Silent on the Black Muslim Riverdale bombers.
    2. Silent on the release of the Black Panthers voter intimidation case.
    His department of justice ordered the case dropped.
    3. Silent on the murder of Private William Long by a Black Muslim –
    Issued a very weak statement, though he loudly condemned the Tiller murder.
    4. Silent on the French plane that crashed in the ocean, possibly blown
    up by the two Muslim terrorists on board.
    5. Silent on Iran – Issued a weakly worded statement.

    On the other side of the coin we have:

    1. Obama’s bowing to the King of Saudi Arabia.
    2. Obama’s pro Islam speech in Cairo, with many fabricated platitudes about the history of Islam.
    3. Obama instructing Eric Holder to issue a memo stating that Muslims were not to be discriminated against.
    4. Releases Muslim terrorists from Gitmo to Bermuda, so that they can go into the restaurant business and hang on the beaches there.
    5. Eliminating the phrase “war on terrorism” and replacing it with “overseas contingency operation” and “terorists” with “man made disasters”.

    There is a definite pattern in the behavior by Barack Hussein Obama toward the worldwide ummah (in keeping with being raised a Muslim in Indonesia).

    • Just because there were two muslims on board the French flight does not make them evil terrorists, in fact all evidence points to damage caused by a storm.
      Second the “Muslim terrorists” released to Bermuda were in fact Chinese anti communists who were planning to fight the Chinese and their oppressive regime. They were declared non combatants and were illegally held for 5 years after they were found to be no danger to the US. I think residence in Bermuda is the least you could do.

      Do you know any muslims? Have you even spoken to one? You seem to hold prejudiced thoughts.

      • esomhillgazette says:

        Hmmmmm. I notice that no other Country would agree to take these “innocent Chinese anti-communists”. Even the People of Bermuda are not to happy that their Government has taken them.

        And that is not the least we could have done. We most certainly could have done a lot less.

        • Yes because China want them back so they can torture and kill them, anyone harbouring the Uighurs is going to be not liked by China anymore. Thats why nobody wanted to take them, they fear what Chinas reaction will be.
          Yes they were innocent having been found to be innocent by the US government, I dont think that can be argued really. True, I honestly would have expected the US government to ship them off to their certain deaths to China so they could appease the Chinese government.

          • That’s exactly who we should have sent them back to. CHINA.

            But you’re right Bob. We should not have kept all these a-holes for so many years. We should have shot them where we found them. Either that or left them alone to begin with.

            • I find you lack of understanding and knowledge shocking, I am glad your level of ignornace is not shared by most Americans.

  16. I agree that the US should not get involved. France only got involved in the US bid for freedom in the Revolutionary War after we had begged them repeatedly. And other nations stayed out of our civil war. I am very glad about that. I think the US foreign policy since WWII has done more damage than good. Certainly we should support freedom, but not necessarily with our troops. I guess I don’t like the role of police and moral superior that the US has assumed.

    • Black Flag says:

      Re: Civil War

      Britain and France made the choice not to recognize the South because of economic reasons.

      Britain relied on Southern cotton for their textile industry. If Lee would have won at Gettysburg, the history of the USA would have been different.

      • Black Flag says:

        And as far as the Revolutionary War, the French were at war with England at the time.

        The American war diverted much needed troops away from other French/English conflicts. It was in the best interest of France to, initially, fund the war and then later, as the Revolution was succeeding, to commit her navy to blockade the Brits.

        England let the Colonies go – simply because she had bigger fish to fry elsewhere against the French.

    • Bama dad says:

      Abe Lincoln’s emancipation proclamation was a bid to insure that Britain and France remain neutral. Britain sold arms to both sides, money talks.

  17. Bamadad@9:49am.#10. Here is an area I want to understand more. My first consideration of 1953 takes in those times. WWII has traumatized the world. Immortal heroes before their time were made by every freedom loving nation. Can one even imagine how sobering the Russian satellite building evolving must have felt. The times may have caused an overreaction with that coup, but then, could chances be a choice?? We can KNOW we can have this fair conversation with Iran some day.

  18. Black Flag says:

    A rebuttal to USWep from Stratfor….

    The Iranian Election and the Revolution Test
    June 22, 2009

    Geopolitical Intelligence Report

    By George Friedman

    Successful revolutions have three phases.

    First, a strategically located single or limited segment of society begins vocally to express resentment, asserting itself in the streets of a major city, usually the capital.

    This segment is joined by other segments in the city and by segments elsewhere as the demonstration spreads to other cities and becomes more assertive, disruptive and potentially violent.

    As resistance to the regime spreads, the regime deploys its military and security forces. These forces, drawn from resisting social segments and isolated from the rest of society, turn on the regime, and stop following the regime’s orders.

    This is what happened to the Shah of Iran in 1979; it is also what happened in Russia in 1917 or in Romania in 1989.

    Revolutions fail when no one joins the initial segment, meaning the initial demonstrators are the ones who find themselves socially isolated.

    When the demonstrations do not spread to other cities, the demonstrations either peter out or the regime brings in the security and military forces — who remain loyal to the regime and frequently personally hostile to the demonstrators — and use force to suppress the rising to the extent necessary.

    This is what happened in Tiananmen Square in China: The students who rose up were not joined by others. Military forces who were not only loyal to the regime but hostile to the students were brought in, and the students were crushed.

    A Question of Support

    This is also what happened in Iran this week.

    The global media, obsessively focused on the initial demonstrators — who were supporters of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s opponents — failed to notice that while large, the demonstrations primarily consisted of the same type of people demonstrating.

    Amid the breathless reporting on the demonstrations, reporters failed to notice that the uprising was not spreading to other classes and to other areas.

    In constantly interviewing English-speaking demonstrators, they failed to note just how many of the demonstrators spoke English and had smartphones.

    The media thus did not recognize these as the signs of a failing revolution.

    Later, when Ayatollah Ali Khamenei spoke Friday and called out the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, they failed to understand that the troops — definitely not drawn from what we might call the “Twittering classes,” would remain loyal to the regime for ideological and social reasons.

    The troops had about as much sympathy for the demonstrators as a small-town boy from Alabama might have for a Harvard postdoc.

    Failing to understand the social tensions in Iran, the reporters deluded themselves into thinking they were witnessing a general uprising. But this was not St. Petersburg in 1917 or Bucharest in 1989 — it was Tiananmen Square.

    In the global discussion last week outside Iran, there was a great deal of confusion about basic facts.

    For example, it is said that the urban-rural distinction in Iran is not critical any longer because according to the United Nations, 68 percent of Iranians are urbanized.

    This is an important point because it implies Iran is homogeneous and the demonstrators representative of the country. The problem is the Iranian definition of urban — and this is quite common around the world — includes very small communities (some with only a few thousand people) as “urban.”

    But the social difference between someone living in a town with 10,000 people and someone living in Tehran is the difference between someone living in Bastrop, Texas and someone living in New York.

    We can assure you that that difference is not only vast, but that most of the good people of Bastrop and the fine people of New York would probably not see the world the same way.

    The failure to understand the dramatic diversity of Iranian society led observers to assume that students at Iran’s elite university somehow spoke for the rest of the country.

    Tehran proper has about 8 million inhabitants; its suburbs bring it to about 13 million people out of Iran’s total population of 70.5 million. Tehran accounts for about 20 percent of Iran, but as we know, the cab driver and the construction worker are not socially linked to students at elite universities. There are six cities with populations between 1 million and 2.4 million people and 11 with populations of about 500,000. Including Tehran proper, 15.5 million people live in cities with more than 1 million and 19.7 million in cities greater than 500,000. Iran has 80 cities with more than 100,000.

    But given that Waco, Texas, has more than 100,000 people, inferences of social similarities between cities with 100,000 and 5 million are tenuous. And with metro Oklahoma City having more than a million people, it becomes plain that urbanization has many faces.
    Winning the Election With or Without Fraud

    We continue to believe two things: that vote fraud occurred, and that Ahmadinejad likely would have won without it. Very little direct evidence has emerged to establish vote fraud, but several things seem suspect.

    For example, the speed of the vote count has been taken as a sign of fraud, as it should have been impossible to count votes that fast. The polls originally were to have closed at 7 p.m. local time, but voting hours were extended until 10 p.m. because of the number of voters in line. By 11:45 p.m. about 20 percent of the vote had been counted. By 5:20 a.m. the next day, with almost all votes counted, the election commission declared Ahmadinejad the winner. The vote count thus took about seven hours. (Remember there were no senators, congressmen, city council members or school board members being counted — just the presidential race.) Intriguingly, this is about the same time in took in 2005, though reformists that claimed fraud back then did not stress the counting time in their allegations.

    The counting mechanism is simple: Iran has 47,000 voting stations, plus 14,000 roaming stations that travel from tiny village to tiny village, staying there for a short time before moving on. That creates 61,000 ballot boxes designed to receive roughly the same number of votes. That would mean that each station would have been counting about 500 ballots, or about 70 votes per hour. With counting beginning at 10 p.m., concluding seven hours later does not necessarily indicate fraud or anything else.

    The Iranian presidential election system is designed for simplicity: one race to count in one time zone, and all counting beginning at the same time in all regions, we would expect the numbers to come in a somewhat linear fashion as rural and urban voting patterns would balance each other out — explaining why voting percentages didn’t change much during the night.

    It has been pointed out that some of the candidates didn’t even carry their own provinces or districts. We remember that Al Gore didn’t carry Tennessee in 2000. We also remember Ralph Nader, who also didn’t carry his home precinct in part because people didn’t want to spend their vote on someone unlikely to win — an effect probably felt by the two smaller candidates in the Iranian election.

    That Mousavi didn’t carry his own province is more interesting. Flynt Leverett and Hillary Mann Leverett writing in Politico make some interesting points on this. As an ethnic Azeri, it was assumed that Mousavi would carry his Azeri-named and -dominated home province.

    But they also point out that Ahmadinejad also speaks Azeri, and made multiple campaign appearances in the district. They also point out that Khamenei is Azeri.

    In sum, winning that district was by no means certain for Mousavi, so losing it does not automatically signal fraud. It raised suspicions, but by no means was a smoking gun.

    We do not doubt that fraud occurred during Iranian election. For example, 99.4 percent of potential voters voted in Mazandaran province, a mostly secular area home to the shah’s family. Ahmadinejad carried the province by a 2.2 to 1 ratio. That is one heck of a turnout and level of support for a province that lost everything when the mullahs took over 30 years ago. But even if you take all of the suspect cases and added them together, it would not have changed the outcome.

    The fact is that Ahmadinejad’s vote in 2009 was extremely close to his victory percentage in 2005.

    And while the Western media portrayed Ahmadinejad’s performance in the presidential debates ahead of the election as dismal, embarrassing and indicative of an imminent electoral defeat, many Iranians who viewed those debates — including some of the most hardcore Mousavi supporters — acknowledge that Ahmadinejad outperformed his opponents by a landslide.

    Mousavi persuasively detailed his fraud claims Sunday, and they have yet to be rebutted. But if his claims of the extent of fraud were true, the protests should have spread rapidly by social segment and geography to the millions of people who even the central government asserts voted for him.

    Certainly, Mousavi supporters believed they would win the election based in part on highly flawed polls, and when they didn’t, they assumed they were robbed and took to the streets.

    But critically, the protesters were not joined by any of the millions whose votes the protesters alleged were stolen.

    In a complete hijacking of the election by some 13 million votes by an extremely unpopular candidate, we would have expected to see the core of Mousavi’s supporters joined by others who had been disenfranchised.

    On last Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, when the demonstrations were at their height, the millions of Mousavi voters should have made their appearance. They didn’t. We might assume that the security apparatus intimidated some, but surely more than just the Tehran professional and student classes posses civic courage. While appearing large, the demonstrations actually comprised a small fraction of society.

    Tensions Among the Political Elite

    All of this not to say there are not tremendous tensions within the Iranian political elite.

    That no revolution broke out does not mean there isn’t a crisis in the political elite, particularly among the clerics. But that crisis does not cut the way Western common sense would have it.

    Many of Iran’s religious leaders see Ahmadinejad as hostile to their interests, as threatening their financial prerogatives, and as taking international risks they don’t want to take.

    Ahmadinejad’s political popularity in fact rests on his populist hostility to what he sees as the corruption of the clerics and their families and his strong stand on Iranian national security issues.

    The clerics are divided among themselves, but many wanted to see Ahmadinejad lose to protect their own interests.

    Khamenei, the supreme leader, faced a difficult choice last Friday. He could demand a major recount or even new elections, or he could validate what happened.

    Khamenei speaks for a sizable chunk of the ruling elite, but also has had to rule by consensus among both clerical and non-clerical forces. Many powerful clerics like Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani wanted Khamenei to reverse the election, and we suspect Khamenei wished he could have found a way to do it.

    But as the defender of the regime, he was afraid to.

    Mousavi supporters’ demonstrations would have been nothing compared to the firestorm among Ahmadinejad supporters — both voters and the security forces — had their candidate been denied. Khamenei wasn’t going to flirt with disaster, so he endorsed the outcome.

    The Western media misunderstood this because they didn’t understand that Ahmadinejad does not speak for the clerics but against them, that many of the clerics were working for his defeat, and that Ahmadinejad has enormous pull in the country’s security apparatus.

    The reason Western media missed this is because they bought into the concept of the stolen election, therefore failing to see Ahmadinejad’s support and the widespread dissatisfaction with the old clerical elite.

    The Western media simply didn’t understand that the most traditional and pious segments of Iranian society support Ahmadinejad because he opposes the old ruling elite. Instead, they assumed this was like Prague or Budapest in 1989, with a broad-based uprising in favor of liberalism against an unpopular regime.

    Tehran in 2009, however, was a struggle between two main factions, both of which supported the Islamic republic as it was.

    There were the clerics, who have dominated the regime since 1979 and had grown wealthy in the process. And there was Ahmadinejad, who felt the ruling clerical elite had betrayed the revolution with their personal excesses.

    And there also was the small faction the BBC and CNN kept focusing on — the demonstrators in the streets who want to dramatically liberalize the Islamic republic.

    This faction never stood a chance of taking power, whether by election or revolution. The two main factions used the third smaller faction in various ways, however. Ahmadinejad used it to make his case that the clerics who supported them, like Rafsanjani, would risk the revolution and play into the hands of the Americans and British to protect their own wealth.

    Meanwhile, Rafsanjani argued behind the scenes that the unrest was the tip of the iceberg, and that Ahmadinejad had to be replaced. Khamenei, an astute politician, examined the data and supported Ahmadinejad.

    Now, as we saw after Tiananmen Square, we will see a reshuffling among the elite. Those who backed Mousavi will be on the defensive.

    By contrast, those who supported Ahmadinejad are in a powerful position. There is a massive crisis in the elite, but this crisis has nothing to do with liberalization: It has to do with power and prerogatives among the elite.

    Having been forced by the election and Khamenei to live with Ahmadinejad, some will make deals while some will fight — but Ahmadinejad is well-positioned to win this battle.

    • USWeapon says:

      BF,

      Excellent information provided. Thank you.

      It should be noted that while I acknowledged the claims of fraud, and stated that it could be true, I also acknowledged that it may be that there was no fraud at all and that I am certainly not the expert in whether it is an example of voter fraud or just a different outcome than the loser wanted. I am more focused on the aftermath than the vote itself. Whether fraud or not, the results are not going to change. The government has done their version of “certifying the vote” and to that end, the election is over.

      It may be that the protests are a futile effort and that the revolution is already shown to be made up of a failing group. I am more concerned personally with the safety and treatment of those involved. The leadership in Iran can be (and may be right now) very oppressive to those who voice dissent. I am interested in what people think the US should be doing or Obama should be saying.

      • Black Flag says:

        What to say.

        “We call upon the government of Iran to use restraint in its dealings with demonstrators and it’s citizens”.

        What to do.

        Nothing.

      • Danak13 says:

        Surprise…surprise, BF. I actually agree with you on this one…hence my statement…it matter not what the vote shows…it only matters the clerics that control. However, they, the clerics, do have a problem. They still have Ahmadinejad and he will eventually lead them where they really do not want to go. I really feel that this guy A-jad will go to war. He wants Iran and himself to be the ruling faction of the Islam world…..and Israel is his way to do it.

    • Pardon me, BF, for being the thorn in your side.

      I see here that you are making another good “This is a futile effort” argument.

      And as usual, I just am not buying it – I just have more faith in the underdog than you seem to have I suppose.

      I have to ask you if you had that same attitude toward the Viet Nam freedom effort in which we committed a vast number of our military (which was very poorly led by a former CEO of Ford Motor Co.) and then abruptly abandon the effort when we had never lost a battle.

      Would it be prudent for the United States to supply the dissidents in Iran with weapons and ammo like we did the Mujaheddin in Afghanistan during their 1980’s struggle against the Soviet Union?

      Not that this gutless wonder that now occupies the White House would ever consider such a move!

      • Black Flag says:

        I have to ask you if you had that same attitude toward the Viet Nam freedom effort in which we committed a vast number of our military (which was very poorly led by a former CEO of Ford Motor Co.) and then abruptly abandon the effort when we had never lost a battle.

        Free the Vietnamese from themselves?

        It was a futile effort.

        The Vietnamese had battled the Chinese, the French, the Japanese, the French again, and then the Americans.

        Perhaps the world would get the hint that they really don’t like foreigners running their lives?

        The Vietnamese would NEVER give up.

        They’d been battling for a 100 years before the Americans – they knew the Americans had no stomach for a century of war.

        Short of obliterating the entire population with a massive genocide (like the Russians have done in Chechnya), the Americans had no hope.

        The Boobus Americanus – who has no idea of history, culture, or of other people’s national desires – continues to make massive blunders globally, which now have cost her all her wealth.

        Would it be prudent for the United States to supply the dissidents in Iran with weapons and ammo like we did the Mujaheddin in Afghanistan during their 1980’s struggle against the Soviet Union?

        No. The battle is not between freedom and tyranny.

        It is between piety and corruption. The Americans would be (and are, today) arming those that represent the corrupted clerics.

        What irony, huh?

        Not that this gutless wonder that now occupies the White House would ever consider such a move!

        Let’s hope so.

        Let’s be clear, G.A. The Iranian Army would most likely overrun the USA Army in Iraq.

        American supply lines in Afghanistan and Iraq are incredibly fragile and strained.

        Iran could close down the Gulf – cut the highway between Baghdad and Basra – and easily overwhelm the dispersed American forces. USA would be lucky if a battalion would make it out – with a forced retreat up toward Turkey.

        The world’s economy – already crippled – would be given its death blow.

        Yes, let’s hope he is gutless – because it would be OUR guts spread all over the place.

        • “Let’s be clear, G.A. The Iranian Army would most likely overrun the USA Army in Iraq.

          American supply lines in Afghanistan and Iraq are incredibly fragile and strained.”

          I know I am a retired Marine – But I have much more faith and belief in the U.S. Army than that!

          “Iran could close down the Gulf – cut the highway between Baghdad and Basra – and easily overwhelm the dispersed American forces. USA would be lucky if a battalion would make it out – with a forced retreat up toward Turkey.

          The world’s economy – already crippled – would be given its death blow.”

          Think about it . . . If “ach-med-the-nut-job” could have done that then he already would have! This is the nutcase who has vowed to nuke Israel off the face of the earth – if this guy’s military (whose tactics and equipment are old soviet throwaways) could have even had a remote chance of doing that (remember that Iraq under Saddam Hussein held them to a stale mate for YEARS) they would already have done that.

          Sorry, my friend, but your military assessment of Iran’s military might and prowess is just not even in the ballpark.

          Remember that Iran is nothing but a Theocratic Dictatorship – Their military is more geared for doing damage to and controlling their own population, not fighting foreign military forces that are much better equipped and trained.

          I do not believe the hype and propaganda that comes out of that sort of government . . . History has proven too many times in the past that it is nothing but hot air.

          In Iran’s Theocratic Dictatorship only the Ayatollah – (I think his name is Komeinei – kind of like the first one they had) – is the one in charge, and all others are just his puppets. Nobody says anything, or does anything without his specific say-so!

        • Let me be clear BF….I know you want this to happen to the US…but there is no way the Iranian Army will cut through to anywhere. They do not have the leadership nor the expertise. They would not be allowed to mass for an attack. Our logistics is not an issue unless there were to be a sustained war. There would none. We have enough firepower to decimate a force within less than one hour away.

          There is also NO WAY that Iran closes the gulf. It does not have the power. They are a paper tiger and the military knows this. Their training program has been in shambles for over a decade. There is no replacement mechanism in place for spare parts. Russia and China will bail out on them. They have no industry. They have no natural resources to sustain a war footing.

          I also disagree strongly with Iran’s economic impact on the world. The world would get along fine without it. The current natural resource guide shows that Iran is not producing enough oil to power themselves and have even bought it on the world market because their infrastructure is dead. Iran is NOT to be feared other than exporting terrorism…even if B.O. says it does not exist.

          Our sats will pick up any massing of troops within minutes and preemptively, they die. The only reason we would even be close to getting hurt is inaction from the CIC. THAT is possible.

          Are you by chance a Trekkie???

  19. Excuse my testing, again. Is this comment getting through? Thank you.

  20. Black Flag. That really fills us in on Iran’s inner dynamics. I was interested in I guess now, futile hope that the well entrenched ruling dynamic aren’t interested in considering our WWII possible overreaction in bringing forth a coup to actually protect and maintain, and place in ally care, the hard won peace.

    • Black Flag says:

      Nope.

      Remember that Iranians view the American support of Iraq during the Iraq/Iran war with vile and hatred too. There is very little in the past 60 years that the USA has done that hasn’t been villainous to Iran.

      And Persians have very long memories.

      The current American position of confrontation with Iran only entrenches the anti-American elite in Iran. As long as the elite have a viable boogy-man (whose actions have proven that it is a boogy-man), the elite will maintain its power-lock.

      As soon as there is no enemy on the horizon, the People will tire of its own oppression and change will happen….unless a new boogy-man is created (…such as a Cold War transforming into a War on Terror….)

  21. BF@11:56am. I would like to know then more about Mohammed Mossadeq. Was his democracy strong? Would Iran have fallen to Russia?

    • Black Flag says:

      No, the democracy was fragile.

      Mossadeq and the Shah were in a power struggle. The Shah was aligned with the Western powers (particularly the British) and had signed over large oil rights to British interests.

      Mossadeq used that against the Shah in the face of the people – who were in an uproar over what they believed was a betrayal. (Remember Britain had ‘invaded’ Iran during the war – though it was not overtly cruel, it was humiliating.)

      When Mossadeq nationalized the oil fields, his popularity soared and he sidelined the Shah. However, the Shah had powerful supporters who had depended on the largess of the oil grants (bribes) from the British. This group was an easy mark for the CIA machinations.

      Russia had long given up its aims in Iran. Stalin invaded Iran during the war as well with the agreement that when the British left, he would too. He didn’t. He tried hard to install a Communist regime, but Truman diplomatically told Stalin that any further direct involvement in Iran would risk military intervention from the USA. Stalin lost interest and left for good – Eastern Europe was still fragile, and it was more important to him at the time.

      It is very unlikely Iran would have fallen under the influences of Russia – Persians (like many Muslims) see Communists as heathens too. At best it would have been a pragmatic interaction – but since during the Iraq/Iran conflict, Iran did not avail herself of Russian military aid, I believe Iran would have resisted any Russian influences.

      The British no longer could support her global empire, and the loss of Iranian influence bothered British Petroleum. Britain convinced Truman to intervene in Iran – and America stepped up to take the falling ‘torch’ of European Colonization from the British (in the Middle East) and the French (in Indo-China). With taking that torch, America also assumed all the focused hatred and anger of Colonization of the last 200 years.

      Combine that with the American policy of “you’re with us or you’re against us” – a policy in place since 1949 – any indigenous democratic movement has been viewed as a threat to American interests – since these movements have usually sprouted up as a response to overthrowing colonial powers, and hence, refuse foreign entanglements. Though these movements have not necessarily been anti-American, but anti-colonizations, American policy has made these movements American enemies by the “not with us” clause.

  22. I agree with USW on this one and Obama has chosen the right path. America should not get involved in Iran’s civil dispute. I feel for the Iranian people and hope they get their differences solved without alot of bloodshed, but if the past is any indicator that won’t happen. Do I think the election was rigged? Yup, sure do but its not our place to go in and fight their war for freedom.

  23. Sometimes there’s nothing to be done.

  24. Amazed1 says:

    This is what I fear from the Iran government….under some pretex they will attack the US or one of our holdings to start an incident that they believe will gather their people back to the leaders side. Iran is to be watched very closely….what the government is doing to their people is sad….very, very sad. But, the US has no dog in this fight unless invited or provoked. We have seen what Iran has done in Iraq…these people are not honost and not forthright in their dealings with others especially their own people. The smartest thing I think is for the US to back way off and have private discussions with Mr. President of Iran. Nada dying in the street for voicing her opinion is one of the sadest pictures I have seen in a long time….it made me very angry to watch that….the Iranian government bulling their own people…….I hate bullies!

    • Black Flag says:

      Iran has zero interest in attracting more American attention – they want us to go away.

      The fear is that the US/Israel may instigate an event given the uncertainty in Iran.

      • Amazed1 says:

        Maybe…but I like you believe that an civil war in Iran would destablize the whole region….there are way to many powers there…just like Iraq….we are there but will we ever be able to get out?
        I believe that Iran is more than capable of causing problems….I do not underestimate ANY government….I think they are all crooked and capable of any kind of atrocity the mind can imagin.

      • Danak13 says:

        No, BF…right as you may be about Iran (and I agree with 95% of what you have posted)….there will be no Israel/US raid…..it will be Israel with or without the approval of the US. And, I fully support Israel’s right to exist and preemptive strike. I did not agree with the establishment of Israel in the late 40’s but it is there, none the less.

        I also do not agree with your assessment that Iran just wants us to go away and we will never hear from them again. If we go away, and I think we should and let Europe and Egypt and Syria and Russia handle them, we will hear from them again.

  25. Found this on a blog, anyone know if any of this is true?

    In recent years, the US Congress voted $120 million for anti-regime media broadcasts into Iran, and $60-75 million funding opposition parties, violent underground Marxists like the Mujahidin-i-Khalq, and restive ethnic groups like Azeris, Kurds, and Arabs under the so-called “Iran Democracy Program.”

    Pakistani intelligence sources put CIA’s recent spending on “black operations” to subvert Iran’s government at $400 million.

    • Black Flag says:

      http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=5165

      William Lowther and Colin Freeman, “US Funds Terror Groups to Sow Chaos in Iran,” Sunday Telegraph (London), February 25, 2007.

      • Thanks Flag, great info,

        Chicken or egg question? Iran is supposedly the worlds largest supporter of terrorism. Supplying arms and funding in Iraq, Afganistan and to the Palestinians. So who started that, and is there a peaceful way to stop it? I understand we are the great satan, but they have shown no willingness to renounce violence.

        • Black Flag says:

          Thanks Flag, great info,

          Chicken or egg question?

          Iran is supposedly the worlds largest supporter of terrorism.

          I would argue that the USA is – supplying Israel and other nations with cluster and phosphorus bombs and weapons…..

          Supplying arms and funding in Iraq, Afganistan and to the Palestinians.

          Who is a terrorist?

          The one who drops bombs from 10,000ft or by remote control? or the one carrying the bomb on his body?

          Give the insurgents a few hundred M1 tanks and a few Apaches….I’m positive they’d use them instead….

          So who started that, and is there a peaceful way to stop it?

          Who started the Iraq war? – USA.
          Who started the Afghan war? – USA.
          Who started the Palestianian war – USA colony.

          I understand we are the great satan, but they have shown no willingness to renounce violence.

          When a ‘rogue’ nation,

          – whose actions in concert with other nations over the last 100 years has been nothing short of villainous to your country;

          – then begins or supports a series of wars (immoral or illegal) directly on your borders and in your region;

          – who threatens your nation with air attack and attack with nuclear weapons and has demonstrated the resolve to use them in the past;

          ….there is nothing that nation can do but act in ways to mitigate any assault, deny any incursion and defend one’s self from any attack.

          “When a fire-breathing dragon is in your midst, it is wise to include it in your plans for the future”

          Take the fire-breathing dragon away – and their plans will equally change. Remember, they haven’t invade another country for 300 years.

          • Amazed1 says:

            BF,
            Remember, they haven’t invade another country for 300 years.
            Do they have to? Just like any powerful nation it is easy to get someone else to do it for you….I do not believe that Iran is a complete innocent here, non-violent, never did any wrong…for 300 years.
            Just like the US funding Iran has its funding to.

            • Black Flag says:

              Iran has been resisting European colonialism for 200 years now.

              It’s rather peculiar to blame Iran for the mess in the ME, right?

              • Those people have been warring with each other for thousands of years. There ability to live in peace has always been to be the biggest and the meanest then no one bothers you. The problems in the ME are a result of may factors.
                I don’t believe I have ever heard Isreal threat to wipe anyone of the map, but Iran does it all the time. No Iran has not been a perfect little neighbor here, the only reason they have not done what they threaten all the time to do is because Iran is not the biggest and meanest and they know it.
                They have been messing in Iraq’s politics for several years now….doing exactly what they claim others are doing to them. Sorry, Iran can not be blamed for everything but they do carry a burden. Like all governments their hands are never clean.

    • Black Flag says:

      A stable Iran is key to a stable Mideast
      Gulf Times – 22 June, 2009
      Author: Eric S Margolis
      (BF: Margolis is an amazing journalist. He is a required read to understand the Middle East and Afghanistan)

      At this point, it’s impossible to foresee what will happen next in Iran’s blazing political crisis. But one thing is certain: the earthquake in the Islamic Republic is shaking the Mideast and deeply confusing everyone, including the US government.

      Highlighting the complexity of this crisis, Meir Dagan, the head of Israel’s intelligence agency, Mossad, reportedly voiced his hope that Iran’s embattled president, Mahmoud Ahmadineajad, would remain in office.

      According to Dagan, if Ahmadinejad’s supposedly “moderate” rival, Mir Hossein Mousavi, came to power, it would be harder for Israel to keep up its propaganda war against Iran over Tehran’s nuclear programme.

      Much of the opinion Westerners are getting on Iran’s dangerous crisis comes from bitterly anti-regime Iranian exiles, “experts” with an axe to grind, and US pro-Israel neocons yearning for war with Iran. In viewing the Muslim world, Westerners keep listening to those who tell them what they want to hear, rather than the facts.

      President Barack Obama properly stated he would refrain from being seen to “meddle” in Iran’s internal affairs in spite of calls by hardline Republicans for American action – whatever that might be. Obama did the right thing by apologising for the US/British coup that overthrew Iran’s democratic Mossadegh government in 1953.

      But that was not the whole story. Washington has been attempting to overthrow Iran’s Islamic government since the 1979 revolution and continues to do so in spite of pledges of neutrality in the current crisis.

      The US has laid economic siege to Iran for 30 years, blocking desperately needed foreign investment and preventing technology transfers. In recent years, the US Congress voted $ 120mn for anti-regime media broadcasts into Iran, and $ 60-75mn funding opposition parties, violent underground Marxists and restive ethnic groups under the so-called “Iran Democracy Programme”. The arm of Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, remains withered from a bomb planted by the Mujahidin-i-Khalq.

      Pakistani intelligence sources put CIA’s recent spending on “black operations” to subvert Iran’s government at $ 400mn.

      While the majority of protests we see in Tehran are genuine and spontaneous, Western intelligence agencies are playing a key role in sustaining them and providing communications, including the newest electronic method, via Twitter.

      The Tehran government made things worse by limiting foreign news reports and arresting prominent politicians.

      We also hear lot of hypocritical humbug from Western capitals.

      Washington, Ottawa, London and Paris piously accused Iran of improper electoral procedures while utterly ignoring the total lack of democracy in some of their Mideast allies. Compared to them, Iran, for all its faults, is a model of democratic governance.

      US senators, led by John McCain, blasted Iran for not respecting human rights. That’s pretty rich after they just voted to bar the public release of ghastly torture photos from US prisons in Iraq.

      French president Nicolas Sarkozy blasted Iran’s elections upon returning from the funeral of Africa’s longest-ruling dictator, Gabon’s Omar Bongo, a major oil supplier to France. Canada, which backed Pakistan’s military dictatorship under General Pervez Musharraf, accused Tehran of unfair elections.

      There are many questions about Iran’s vote, of which incumbent President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad won by 60%. Voter turnout was an amazing 85%, putting to shame the US and Europe, where less than half of voters exercise their right.

      Pre-election polls that showed Ahmadinejad headed for a big win may have been right. All those foreigners praying for his defeat and the collapse of the Islamic government may be deeply disappointed.

      This leaves Washington in a quandary. President Obama sincerely wants to enter into talks with Iran over its nuclear programme and try to convince Tehran to give up enrichment. But hardliners in his cabinet, like the strongly pro-Israel Hillary Clinton, the new Iran chief advisor, Dennis Ross, a longtime fixture of the Israel Lobby, are urging Obama to seize the opportunity to further destabilise Iran.

      Bad idea. A stable Iran is essential to a stable Mideast. Mossad chief Dagan knows what he’s talking about. Meanwhile, other Mideast nations will look at Iran and conclude that giving democratic rights can be downright dangerous and must be avoided at all costs.

      • Danak13 says:

        You know, BF…the only way to prove you wrong…is to back off and leave Iran alone. I will be dead and gone but my children and grand children will have to live with this… I think that you are totally wrong that in lifting sanctions, engaging in negotiations that will lead to nowhere, and otherwise being an ostrich will do nothing but empower a regime that, you and I both know, for we are both widely read and have on ground experience, are living in the past and carrying a grudge that is thousands of years old.

        If Israel were to be moved across the world, and the United States take a totally hands off policy…that is to mean no financial interest, no trade, no diplomatic ties….nothing…Iran’s policy will not leave us nor the world alone. We will still be the great satan to be eliminated. To assume otherwise is folly.

        • Black Flag says:

          The US cannot just ‘overnight’ normalize with Iran – for the simple reason they would not believe the USA. It would actually seed even more suspicion.

          Like building any damaged relationship, it must be staged, with small steps.

          The first step is the USA stopping its disruptions and open diplomatic relations.

          The rest will slowly fall into place over time.

          • Well, sir…we just have to agree to disagree. I could care less about Iran. We do not need diplomatic relations at all. I know you supported B.O. but I really think you are much smarter than that. Capitulation and appeasement, which is what I see diplomacy is with rogue regimes, simply will not work. Also, you had mentioned and see nothing with all these apologies to the world. you also know that the Arab world and the Oriental world sees this as weakness. The USA needs no apologies to anyone…if there is anything, the world needs to apologize to us. But, to have a horse race, it takes more than one…so we will agree to disagree.

            • Black Flag says:

              How are they “rogue”?

              Name one country they’ve invaded in the last two centuries.

              • USWeapon says:

                Lebanon. You take a very narrow view and assign the US as the only villain in every scenario, BF. I can see where America makes its mistakes and where it sticks its nose where it should not be, but you seem to lack the ability to see the reality of what other countries do. Every action in the world is initiated by the US. Every other country in the world does absolutely nothing wrong and we are picking on someone who just wanted to mind their own business. I am throwing the shenanigan flag.

                Iran has meddled in many affairs throughout the last 50 years. Denying so makes you seem either blatantly ignorant or intentionally dishonest. Iran played a large part in Lebanon, as a very large backer of Hezbollah. There is no denying that. Iran played a large part in Iraq, supplying weapons and insurgents to the cause. There is no denying that. They are a supporter and supplier to any terrorist network that is willing to strike at the west, or for that matter, willing to strike any non-muslim power. There is not denying that. We should leave Iran alone and stop meddling in the affairs of other nations. But let’s not dip into the realm of stupidity and suggest that they are a bunch of misunderstood good folks that want to play nice and would do so if the mean US would just follow the rules. What they are doing to their own people shows exactly what kind of country and government they are. Willing to gun down their own people? And you think they want to play nice with us? Naive at best.

              • Danak13 says:

                If you are using the term “invade” to mean an army that marches in….to my knowledge none… If you expand the scope of invade to mean puppet armies and financial support….several.

  26. Amazed1 says:

    FROM TRUTHOUT.ORG
    The New Yorker’s Seymour Hersh subsequently confirmed the story, reporting that the Presidential finding focused on “on undermining Iran’s nuclear ambitions and trying to undermine the government through regime change.”

    He also reported that the Democratic-controlled Congress had approved up to $400 million to fund the destabilization campaign. “The covert activities involve support of the minority Ahwazi Arab and Baluchi groups and other dissident organizations,” said Hersh.
    Supposedly 120M goes to Iranian civil society and Human rights orgs and somewhere more than 75M to Voice America and other stations being piped into Iran.
    Even tho Obama doesn’t want to step over the line on the surface this stuff is still going on underground.
    I realize the French helped us in our fight and most people who are held under thumb do not have the means (they have the heart) to support any kind of resistance to bully governments but, sure does cause lots of problems!

  27. Black Flag says:

    Another aspect of USA/Iran relations:

    During Gulf War I, we all know Gen. Norm Schwarzkopf commanded Allied Forces.

    What is not commonly known was that his father Norm Schwarzkopf Sr. was the CIA Agent who was instrumental in Operation Ajax – the overthrow of Iran’s Mossadeq.

    Can one imagine what was going on in the minds of Iran’s rulers, knowing that the son of the man that caused so much grief in their nation was now running the largest army of Western Powers since WW2 – right on their border.

  28. I haven’t had a chance to read all comments, but late last night I read that the picture of Neda is not her, although it really doesn’t matter.

    • USWeapon says:

      If I find that to be true, I will certainly change it. It was simply the one that the news networks were offering as her.

  29. Color Revolution in Iran?

    We all know that the CIA has been involved in several coup d’etats ever since President Harry S. Truman spawned this creature. Hell, they’ve even done it once before in Iran, in 1953. And I think we also know that Iran has been in the crosshair’s of the neocons, neoliberals and other policy makers for quite a while. Even the RAND Corporation has been lobbying for another world war to “save the U.S. economy”.

    And that, I think is reason enough to concider the possibility that the spooks might have their dirty little hands in this one aswell. It is of course their modus operandi.

    Now, obviously the CIA does not control thousands of protesters, not directly at least. But because the atmosphere in Iran was tense to begin with, all they really needed was to introduce a few catalysts to get the ball rolling. This could be seemingly random violence, clashes with the Revolutionary Guard and so on. And as we are pack animals, our herd mentality and mob behaviour quickly take over in situations like this. It’s pretty basic psychology actually.

    But the CIA is only a means to an end by the powers that be, the CIA is just a tool. Next you will probably see lots of videos and images of Iranians being killed by the Islamic militants and other horrible atrocities occuring in the country. This footage will probably loop continuously for several months on TV and be spread through the internet on websites such as YouTube and Twitter. Joe Average will buy what they are selling, and he will get angry, and demand that the Obama administration do something about it.

    The Obama administration will appear standoffish at first, saying they shouldn’t get involved in Iranian domestic matters, which is actually true. But this will just make Joe Average more angry as the mass media churns out more pictures of bloody Iranians, and Joe will call Obama a coward. Unless a coup d’etat is successful, some action might be taken, such as an invasion, bombing Iran or maybe just some sanctions, because Obama had “no choice”, the “people were demanding it”, so on and so forth.

    And people will of course forget, for a while at least, all about the bankers stealing $9 trillion dollars.

    • Danak13 says:

      Boy, Nubian….conspiracy theory makers unite…. CIA theory and over throw…You are, however, quite right about one thing and that it is wise to create a diversion to take ones mind off the bankers and unions stealing our money…and that is no conspiracy theory..it is fact.

  30. BF. Many thanks for getting me up to speed on this Iranian discussion. Here is how I see it at this time. the religiously held 12th Imam of the Sunni(?) sect. We all have a right to try and deter religious crazed steadfastness of blowing up all the Great Satans(More Boogey men). I think McCain has my blessing to blast verbally away. And whatever we can do to thoughtully dull this steadfast desire is OK.

  31. We can learn a thing or two from the so called “Iranians”. They are willing to fight for there freedom, Americans talk about it and then once their liberty is gone, we want to get angry.

  32. I’m very appreciative of the interesting tale. Money is always in the mix, alas. Maybe Ahmedinijad clings to his religion and guns more than the Mullahs themselves, realizing his nuclear ambitions as quite possibly dangerous to their homeland. But, as you say, he has the populus to date. Too bad as the Iranian DJ/Israel was helping all he could too.

  33. Black Flag says:

    Iran, 1953: When the government of Prime Minister Mohammed Mossadegh nationalized the Anglo-Iranian oil company, the resulting sanctions on the country – led by Great Britain and the United States – resulted in economic hardship and political unrest.

    Fearing that such instability could result in a communist takeover and concerned about the precedent of nationalization on American oil companies elsewhere in the Middle East, agents of the Central Intelligence Agency organized a military coup in 1953, ousting the elected prime minister.

    The United States returned the exiled Shah to Iran, where he ruled with an iron fist for more than a quarter century. Tens of thousands of dissidents were tortured and murdered by his dreaded SAVAK secret police, organized and trained by the United States. The repression was largely successful in wiping out the democratic opposition. The SAVAK was less successful in infiltrating religious institutions, however, so when the revolution finally took place, toppling the Shah in 1979, the formerly secular Iran came under the leadership of virulently reactionary and anti-American Islamists.

    The result of the Islamic revolution was not only the end of one of America’s strongest economic and strategic relationships in the Middle East, but also the hostage crisis of 1979-81, Iranian support for anti-American terrorist groups, and a series of armed engagements in the Persian Gulf during the 1980s.

    Had the United States not overthrown Iran’s constitutional government in 1953 and replaced it with the dictatorial Shah, there would not have been the Islamic Revolution and its bloody aftermath.

    Iran-Iraq war, 1980-90: The United States actively supported Iraq’s invasion of Iran, blocking efforts by the United Nations to place sanctions upon Saddam Hussein’s regime for its aggression, and providing the Iraqis with economic and military assistance.

    Even though Iraq was actively supporting terrorist groups such as Abu Nidal, the United States dropped Iraq from its list of countries sponsoring terrorism in order to send otherwise banned military and technological support. These included the seed stock for Iraq’s anthrax supply (which were used to make biological weapons) and various toxic chemicals (which were used to make chemical weapons), which the United States now claims makes Iraq enough of a threat to require a U.S.-led invasion.

    Officials from the U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency were sent to Iraq to use U.S. satellite imagery to help the Iraqis target Iranian troop concentrations, even though they knew the Iraqis were using banned chemical weapons against Iranian soldiers.

    In 1987, the United States sent in the U.S. Navy to protect Kuwaiti ships that were supporting the Iraqi war effort, launching a series of armed engagements with Iranian naval forces and bombing Iranian coastal areas.

    When the Iraqis attacked the U.S. navy frigate Stark in May 1987, killing 37 sailors, the United States accepted Iraqi claims that it was an accident despite evidence to the contrary. In July 1988, the U.S. Navy shot down an Iranian airliner on a regularly-scheduled flight over Iranian air space, killing all 290 on board.

    This American support for Saddam Hussein despite his invasion of Iran, his use of weapons of mass destruction, and his unprovoked attack on a U.S. Navy ship in international waters undoubtedly emboldened the Iraqi dictator to believe he could get away with invading another neighbor country: the small but wealthy emirate of Kuwait.

    • “In July 1988, the U.S. Navy shot down an Iranian airliner on a regularly-scheduled flight over Iranian air space, killing all 290 on board.” …

      There is a description of that event in a book I’m reading that would be farcical if it weren’t for the devastating consequences — Deadly Decisions How False Knowledge Sank The Titanic, Blew Up The Shuttle, and Led America Into War by Christopher Burns 2008.

  34. BF. My reply took too long, and got erased(my system of wire transport, methinks). So, I may break it into sections, if I can’t concisely relay in one post. Thank you again for even more history.

  35. BF. The cold war seeded the fear supreme that influenced the moves that were made, circa 1953. And, shamefully, if you have it right, the curse that befalls the unjust wealth gathering. The distance must have been a factor too. Putting the Shah in would keep groups from going over to the Communist side. And beside all that, the Shah’s friends successfully winning their financial gain.

  36. B.F. The fragile democracy, sway from Shah interests, greed if what you say is true, and cold war priorities, I see as the ingredients for this. History seems to be LOADED with them. No wonder Diplomacy is a necessary activity. To iron out mistakes, and recognize times. The cold war caused fear, and fear can do strange things.

  37. B.F. I still wonder if the religious element of the coming of the 12th Imam inescapably move a group to it. That’s not fact. I understand.
    Thank you again for helping me understand, and thank you USWarrior for a great site!

    • Black Flag says:

      Certainly Khamenei holds tremendous power – but he needs to maintain the piety that the public demands of their clerics.

      He understands that if he overruled Ahmadinejad, he would have faced a massive public outcry.

  38. Black Flag says:

    Danak13

    I also do not agree with your assessment that Iran just wants us to go away and we will never hear from them again. If we go away, and I think we should and let Europe and Egypt and Syria and Russia handle them, we will hear from them again.

    The Persians have had their ‘global empire’ and know its ultimate consequence. They have no stomach to create another one. The last initiation of aggression was over 300 years ago.

    So, regarding Iran, what historical basis are you considering to base your belief?

    • Danak13 says:

      I have absolutely no historical basis for my belief at all…. I have only my personal reasoning in dealing with these people and their government in the past few years, intensive talks with clerics in Kuwait, Egypt, and the United States, (most recently in the US). If your only historical fact is the last initiation of aggression is 300 years ago, I would take exception to the fact that there are various forms of aggression. However, this is my belief from experience.

  39. Yes. It will be interesting to see, although, it’s strange that their elected President holds sway over them! I’d thought that was to work the other way. It’s really a culture that is unique unto themselves. But hurting others as per divine right(and I believe their President is fanatatical about this), means we must be ready to defend. Certainly neighbors in the area must also protect themselves too.

  40. esomhillgazette says:

    OK. Here’s how I see it. We should stay out of ALL, not just Iran’s, but ALL other Nation’s internal affairs. If you ask me Obama and his Administration and the rest of our Government has much more to concern them right here in their own Country. We have enough problems of our own without worrying about others. We also should quit giving other Nation’s our money so they can live a better life while they hate us. Keep them $$$ here at home and help our citizens.

    We have been involving ourselves in sovereign Nation’s affairs for far too long IMHO. This needs to stop.

    We do not need to be the world police. We do not need to be the world’s saviors. I agree though, with D13. Even if we pulled out and stopped interfering with other Nations such as Iran, They will still find excuses to hate us. People out there will ALWAYS be out there that will hate us simply because we are Americans. But should we care? NO. If they mess with us, then we should feel free to ream them a new orifice.

  41. Black Flag says:

    G. A. Rowe

    I know I am a retired Marine – But I have much more faith and belief in the U.S. Army than that!

    Faith does not ship supplies.

    It wouldn’t be the first time an Army, with superior numbers and firepower, are defeated by supply lines.

    America’s Achilles heel is the dependence on fuel and lubricants. Every drop of fuel for every machine, tank, and armored vehicle needs to be transported on the Basra highway.

    Further, who in Iraq would be America’s allies?

    The USA invaded Iraq and destroyed the Sunni’s who held power with Saddam.

    The Shiite have an affinity for the Shiite in Iran – and an attack on Iran they would most certainly not chose our side against their own.

    Our forces would have absolutely no place to go – literally, every one Iraq would attack our forces. A hundred thousand troops surrounded by 28 million Iraqis and 60 million Iranians.

    Think about it . . . If “ach-med-the-nut-job” could have done that then he already would have! This is the nutcase who has vowed to nuke Israel off the face of the earth –

    Firstly, he has said no such thing. You are guilty of gullibility from MSN talking heads. He has said – “The Zionist regime in Israel cannot last and will be swept from the pages of time”.

    Where do you get ‘nuking Israel’?

    Further, I agree. If Iran wanted to decimate the USA, she could do it – but it would cost her dearly too. But the reverse it true. Any action on Iran will cost the USA dearly.

    if this guy’s military (whose tactics and equipment are old soviet throwaways) could have even had a remote chance of doing that (remember that Iraq under Saddam Hussein held them to a stale mate for YEARS) they would already have done that.

    As history has proven, hubris is the worse enemy of a Nation.

    -‘Quintilius Varus, give me back my legions!’ (Legio XVII, Legio XVIII and Legio XIX – altogether some 20,000 men destroyed in Teutoburg Forest by “savages”)

    – In 415 BC, Athens – the greatest power in Mediterranean at the time – dispatched a massive expeditionary force to attack Syracuse in Sicily; the attack failed disastrously, with the destruction of the entire force, in 413 BC.

    – Philip II, who sent the Spanish Armada in 1588 to escort the Duke of Parma’s army across the North Sea to invade England and put a friendly Catholic on the English throne. Driven off at the sea battle of Gravelines, the Armada failed. The English and Dutch gained new confidence in attacking the Spanish at sea around the world. Spain did not agree to a truce until 1609 – and did not recognize the Dutch Republic until 1648

    American hubris regarding Iran will risk this entire nation. We will not recover from the loss.

    Fortunately, the JCoS are fully aware of the Iranian asymmetrical strength of response.

    Do remember, in war games, Iran sank our two fleets in the Gulf…twice… (a second time when the war game was restarted and the fleet brought back to life). After the second time, the rules of the game were changed.

    Unfortunately, the US does not have this power in real life.

    >
    > Remember that Iran is nothing but a Theocratic Dictatorship – Their military is more geared for doing damage to and controlling their own population, not fighting foreign military forces that are much better equipped and trained.

    You forget they fought Iraq for 10 years, without any international support, and while Iraq received massive USA arms and aid, Iran was winning.

    Iran was forced to accept terms when the US Navy entered the Gulf and threatened invasion.

    To under estimate the danger our forces are under in Iraq would be fatal to America.

    • USWeapon says:

      Again I am throwing the BS flag here. You know I respect your intelligence, but you are flying blind on this one. You make some good points that would be better if they were relevant. You make some others that simply are not true.

      Let’s start with simply not true. “The Iranian Army would decimate the US.” Completely false. You know economics. I don’t question you in that arena. I know foreign military power, tactics, and abilities. And I know war. From what I have read from Danak he falls into the same category. We both agree that this is a false statement. The Iranian army fought with the Iraqi army for ten years. True. The Iraqis were supplied by the US. True. The Iranians were ALSO supplied by the US. Interesting that you left that part out. In fact we had an entire decade dominated by that scandal. The US military, flexing about 30% of its strength, walked a mudhole in the Iraqi army in about 100 hours. So maybe it would take them 200 hours to do the same to Iran. The Iranian Army is not strong. It’s equipment is old, and best intelligence estimates say only about 50% of its heavy equipment can even move at this point. Their soldiers are poorly trained, and most, like the Iraqi “elite Republican Guard”, have only seen real combat against their own citizens. There is a reason we use shock and awe. It is enough to remove 75% of their military from the game based on fear alone. They will run, surrender, and die as fast as the Iraqi army did.

      America’s Achilles heel is the dependence on fuel and lubricants. Every drop of fuel for every machine, tank, and armored vehicle needs to be transported on the Basra highway.

      False. American equipment does, in fact, depend on fuel and lubricants. But as someone who has fought in that region I can tell you that the rest of that statement is false. They do not rely on any highway. Our military fighting doctrine solved the issue of having supply lines broken in the desert 15 years ago. It is a problem should we fight in the jungle. It is a problem if we fight in the mountains, but it is not a problem in the majority of the middle east. Not to mention that by the time they figure out where the supply lines are, our mechanized infantry and armor will have eliminated theirs. You far underestimate our military and far overestimate theirs. That isn’t pride our hubris talking. That is mere reality trumping wishful thinking.

      Firstly, he has said no such thing. You are guilty of gullibility from MSN talking heads. He has said – “The Zionist regime in Israel cannot last and will be swept from the pages of time”. Where do you get ‘nuking Israel’?

      Correct. I fully agree that there is not a quote that he is going to nuke Israel. This is a runaway lie. He did not say that. But it does not mean that he doesn’t think it. He is a 12th-ist, and we know what they believe, don’t we? What his intentions are we can not know. He has not said that Israel will be wiped from the map. But he has made many statements that show his desire to have Israel gone. Again I point out that a government that will kill its own people isn’t one that you really trust has good intentions when it doesn’t like someone. They clearly don’t like Israel. The fact that he didn’t make the statement you referenced, does not mean that he has good intentions.

      Further, I agree. If Iran wanted to decimate the USA, she could do it – but it would cost her dearly too. But the reverse it true. Any action on Iran will cost the USA dearly.

      Really? I would say that you need to make up your mind on this one. Because you have made it clear that no country on earth, let alone Iran, can invade the United States at all, let alone decimate her. Iran has a one in a million chance of beating the US militarily. And even that chance in fleeting and would take a ton of lucky breaks. DEFEATING Iran is another story altogether. Beating a country militarily is far different from beating it outright. Iran wouldn’t last a couple weeks militarily against us. But they would be difficult to truly defeat. As for Iran beating the US…. would never happen. Again, not pride or hubris. Just reality. I know that you love that David vs Goliath stuff where every country out there can stand up to us, but that stuff only lives in theory. When we decide to flex, there might be one or two that could hang, but that is it. This is just like you saying that a militia could defeat a Chinese invasion. Absolute nonsense.

      As for your references to historical upsets against larger armies. Great reading and it certainly provides fodder to send the vastly outgunned to their deaths, but completely irrelevant to today’s world. The delta between weapons was relatively small during those times when compared to the difference between the US military weaponry and most of the world, with a very few exceptions. Give Custer a single Bradley fighting vehicle and not a single indian walks away from that confrontation. You have a penchant for bringing in historical facts like this that don’t apply when viewed more critically. You should stop that.

      Do remember, in war games, Iran sank our two fleets in the Gulf…twice… (a second time when the war game was restarted and the fleet brought back to life). After the second time, the rules of the game were changed.

      Somewhat true and somewhat not. First, the US Fleet in this war game was not using an implemented doctrine or proven methods. They were TESTING a new high-tech joint force doctrine. The opposing general, van Ripen, used low tech all the way and beat them. Fabulous, but this proved nothing that Mitchell hadn’t already proven 60 years ago. It proved nothing that the history of naval warfare hasn’t shown many times. It proved nothing that we didn’t already know. All it proved is that giant floating surface vessels are sitting ducks against even low tech airplanes with bombs or missiles. We learned that in Pearl Harbor. It has long been said that the only safe naval vessel is the submarine.

      The wargame rules also did not allow for many different deterrents that would have been effective such as laying naval minefields and a vastly increased air support. It also put the vessels in harms way prior to initiating the air strikes that we have made a signature of our method of operation. The preceding air strikes would eliminate almost the entirety of the small boats and planes that van Ripen was allowed to start with intact. So it is nice fodder for folks like you to throw out as evidence that Iran will beat us, but it wasn’t rooted in the reality of how such a conflict would play out.

      You forget they fought Iraq for 10 years, without any international support, and while Iraq received massive USA arms and aid, Iran was winning. Iran was forced to accept terms when the US Navy entered the Gulf and threatened invasion.

      Funny, why didn’t they just use their cessnas and fishing boats and sink the fleet? I already addressed the international support part.

      The bottom line, BF, is that Iran militarily would be decimated by us. There is nothing they could do to stop us. Despite your fervent wish that this wasn’t true, it simply cannot happen.

      That being said, attacking Iran would be a disaster for us in many different ways that have nothing to do with military strikes and casualties. World condemnation, economic consequences, region destabilization. All these things would be bad. And beyond that, we have no right to interfere in the business of sovereign nations. The UN has that power through the use of a world vote and subsequent sanctions. But the US has no right. And that is why I say we should keep our nose out of it.

  42. Black Flag says:

    USWeapon

    BF: What country has Iran invaded int he last 300 years?”

    USWEP: Lebanon.

    :blink: :blink:

    That is the most bizarre statement I’ve seen you make.

    Iran has not invaded Lebanon.

    Facts:
    The 1978 South Lebanon conflict (code-named Operation Litani by Israel) was an intervention in Lebanon up to the Litani River carried out by the Israel Defense Forces in 1978. It was a military success, as PLO forces were pushed north of the river.

    However, objections from the Lebanese government led to the creation of the UNIFIL peacekeeping force and a partial Israeli withdrawal.

    First Lebanon War, began on 6 June 1982, when the Israel Defense Forces invaded southern Lebanon.

    Surrounded in West Beirut and subjected to heavy bombardment, they negotiated passage from Lebanon with the aid of Special Envoy Philip Habib and the protection of international peacekeepers.

    the Second Lebanon War was a 34-day military conflict in Lebanon The conflict started on 12 July 2006 with the invasion of Lebanon by Israel, and continued until a United Nations-brokered ceasefire went into effect in the morning on 14 August 2006.

    Perhaps you got your spelling wrong …its IS, then RA-no N – but E A L that has invaded Lebanon.

    You take a very narrow view and assign the US as the only villain in every scenario, BF.

    Not true, old friend.

    I’ve stated – many times – the problem was instigated in the roots of European Colonialism, which was reinforced by the wicked treaties post-WW1.

    I’ve also stated that the American Empire has purposefully by policy picked up the Colonialist Mercantile Systems of Britain and France.

    I’ve also shown that this policy forces violent intervention against national political movements, including democratic ones.

    America suffers Mercantilism, inherited from the Europeans – mostly from Britain and France.

    This policy is enforced by an attitude of a ‘with me or against me’ – thus, America fears that such movements – which are statements of a national self-determination – will always end up with enemies of America – because self-determination threatens American mercantilism.

    This attitude is no different the the European Colonialists like Britain – whose entire Empire was built on mercantilism.

    Thus, American policy does not support self-determination (though it mouths this goal) -unless it also comes with a carte blanche agreement in favor of US business interests- but supports any government, no matter how tyrannical, that is a ‘friend’ of America (ie: allows American business interests to flourish – mercantilism)

    If you take pause, and review every international action from that point of view, quickly the events and actions make sense.

    America’s support of Israel makes no sense outside of this context.

    However, if you see that Israel gives America a secure operational base to enforce its business interests (ie: oil) in the Middle East, and that without Israel, it would be next to impossible to enforce such a hegemony, the unwavering support of even atrocities sudden becomes clear, too.

    I can see where America makes its mistakes and where it sticks its nose where it should not be, but you seem to lack the ability to see the reality of what other countries do.

    Au contraire.

    You are measuring mistakes incorrectly.

    Every ‘nose sticking’ – if you review the historical actions – is an act of mercantilism.

    Since you, like most citizens, find it vile to die for someone else’s pocket change, the political machine changes the tune – ie: defend freedom, etc. – though any reasoning and watching of the actions proofs such tunes as ridiculous.

    If you are a mercantilist, America has made no mistakes – it has, occasionally, been incapable of enforcing such (Vietnam, Korea) but that isn’t a ‘mistake’ – it is merely an unsuccessful attempt.

    Take off your rose colored glasses, USWep and smell the coffee –

    To use your own title against you – WAKE UP!

  43. Black Flag says:

    USWep

    Let’s start with simply not true. The Iranian Army would decimate the US. Completely false. You know economics. I don’t question you in that arena. I know foreign military power, tactics, and abilities. And I know war. From what I have read from Danak he falls into the same category. We both agree that this is a false statement. The Iranian army fought with the Iraqi army for ten years. True. The Iraqis were supplied by the US. True. The Iranians were ALSO supplied by the US. Interesting that you left that part out. In fact we had an entire decade dominated by that scandal.

    Again, you’re fooled by the illusion of mirrors.

    Iraq was publicly supported by the US. We sent diplomats and Secretaries of Defense and State to shake hands with Saddam.

    It was a corrupt business decision that caused the Iran/Contra Affair. There was no public nor private support of Iran.

    Further, I did not say the Iranian Army would decimate the US. They have no Navy to reach the continent.

    I said that the Iranian Army is well positioned to decimate the US Army in Iraq. By merely looking at a map, it is bluntly obvious as to why.

    I said that the Iranian Armed Forces is well positioned to provided massive, asymetrical response, to US military force against Iran.

    Iran has very limited military capability outside of its immediate region. It has no viable response, militarily, to an attack by either Israel or America. It can, however, decimate the global economy – and America with it.

    Some information quotes as background:

    Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Mike Mullen told the Wall Street Journal that Iran’s ability to strike back “has not maxed out at all.”

    …established a doctrine of deterrence that calls for a disproportionate response against the U.S. and Israel in the event of any attack on Iran’s nuclear facilities, no matter how limited. The doctrine stipulates that anything less than a large-scale response would risk the credibility of the Iranian regime — and its survival. And importantly, it does not draw a distinction between Israel and the U.S., if for no other reason than Israeli jets have to fly across U.S.-controlled Iraqi airspace to hit Iran.

    Lt. General Paul Van Riper led a hypothetical Persian Gulf state in the 2002 Millennium Challenge war games that resulted in the destruction of the Fifth Fleet.

    His experience and conclusions regarding the vulnerability of the Fifth Fleet to an asymmetrical military conflict and the implications for a war against Iran have been ignored.

    Iran has sufficient quantities of cruise missiles to destroy much or all of the Fifth Fleet which is within range of Iran’s mobile missile launchers strategically located along its mountainous terrain overlooking the Persian Gulf.

    The most sophisticated of Iran’s cruise missiles are the ‘Sunburn’ and ‘Yakhonts’. These are missiles against which U.S. military experts conclude modern warships have no effective defence.

    Iran has purchased sufficient quantities of both the Sunbeam and Yakhonts to destroy much or all of the U.S. Naval Fifth Fleet anywhere in the Persian Gulf from its mountainous coastal terrain.

    Millennium Challenge War games

    The “Millennium Challenge” was one of the largest war games ever conducted and war games involved 13,500 troops spread out at over 17 locations. The war games involved heavy usage of computer simulations, extended over a three week period and cost $250 million.

    Millennium Challenge involved asymmetrical warfare between the U.S military forces, led by General William Kernan, and an unnamed state in the Persian Gulf.

    According to General Kernan, the war games “would test a series of new war-fighting concepts recently developed by the Pentagon.”

    Using a range of asymmetrical attack strategies using disguised civilian boats for launching attacks, planes in Kamikaze attacks, and Silkworm cruise missiles, much of the Fifth Fleet was sunk.

    The games revealed how asymmetrical strategies could exploit the Fifth Fleet’s vulnerability against anti-ship cruise missiles in the confined waters of the Persian Gulf

    In a controversial decision, the Pentagon decided to simply ‘refloat’ the Fifth Fleet to continue the exercise which led to the eventual defeat of the Persian Gulf state.

    The sinking of the Fifth Fleet was ignored and the war games declared a success for the “new war-fighting concepts” adopted by Gen. Kernan.

    This led to Lt General Paul Van Riper, the commander of the mythical Gulf State, calling the official results “empty sloganeering”.

    In a later television interview, General Riper declared “when the concepts that the command was testing failed to live up to their expectations, the command at that point began to script the exercise in order to prove these concepts. This was my critical complaint.”

    The US military, flexing about 30% of its strength, walked a mudhole in the Iraqi army in about 100 hours. So maybe it would take them 200 hours to do the same to Iran. The Iranian Army is not strong.

    You make the same, typical, mistake of equating Iraqi military with Iranian military.

    Further, you evaluate Iranian capability on the same terms as the American capability – that is, ability to project military power beyond national borders.

    Thus, in your evaluation, you ignore the grave threat Iranian military places upon American forces in the region.

    It’s equipment is old, and best intelligence estimates say only about 50% of its heavy equipment can even move at this point.

    I’ll repeat this as a rebuttal to your contention:

    Iran has purchased sufficient quantities of both the Sunbeam and Yakhonts to destroy much or all of the U.S. Naval Fifth Fleet anywhere in the Persian Gulf from its mountainous coastal terrain.

    I offer this as a further rebuttal:

    Iran yesterday confirmed that Russia had agreed to deliver the S-300 air defence system,

    The S-300 had a range far superior to that of the US Patriot system, experts said. It could also shoot down cruise and ballistic missiles, they added.

    True, if you compare the number of air craft carriers Iran has vs. the USA, they’ll quite a bit behind.

    But again, you’re missing the strategic goal and capability.

    Their soldiers are poorly trained, and most, like the Iraqi “elite Republican Guard”, have only seen real combat against their own citizens.

    Bizarre amnesia.

    Ever hear of the Iraq/Iran War?

    There is a reason we use shock and awe. It is enough to remove 75% of their military from the game based on fear alone. They will run, surrender, and die as fast as the Iraqi army did.

    Such assumption, which fortunately is NOT the assumption of the JCoS, would risk the American Army of Iraq.

    You forget that the current Iranian regime was put into place by popular revolution – unlike Saddam, who seized it.

    Saddam thought the same as you when he invaded in 1980 – the Iranians would overthrow the government – and he was as wrong as you are.

    > America’s Achilles heel is the dependence on fuel and lubricants. Every drop of fuel for every machine, tank, and armored vehicle needs to be transported on the Basra highway.

    > False. American equipment does, in fact, depend on fuel and lubricants. But as someone who has fought in that region I can tell you that the rest of that statement is false. They do not rely on any highway. Our military fighting doctrine solved the issue of having supply lines broken in the desert 15 years ago. It is a problem should we fight in the jungle. It is a problem if we fight in the mountains, but it is not a problem in the majority of the middle east. Not to mention that by the time they figure out where the supply lines are, our mechanized infantry and armor will have eliminated theirs. You far underestimate our military and far overestimate theirs. That isn’t pride our hubris talking. That is mere reality trumping wishful thinking.

    “Amateurs talk strategy; professionals talk logistics.” — Gen. Omar Bradley

    I leave facts on the table for the rest of your audience to make their own assessments.

    1). The US military – on its own – consumes more fuel than Greece.

    2). “The Third Army (of General Patton) had about 400,000 men and used about 400,000 gallons of gasoline a day. Today , in Iraq, the USA has about a third that number of troops in Iraq yet they use more than four times as much fuel.”

    3). The U.S. military now uses about 1.7 million gallons of fuel a day in Iraq. … each of the 150,000 soldiers on the ground consumes roughly nine gallons of fuel a day. This measn in Iraq each day 40,000 b/d of oil is consumed by the US military.

    4). The US Army used 1.88 billion gallons of fuel were consumed within the U.S. Central Command’s area of responsibility during Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm (ODS/S), between August 10, 1990 and May 31, 1991.” Any operation against Iran would exceed this.

    5). In 2008, more than 68 million gallons of fuel, on average, were supplied by DOD each month to support U.S. military forces in Iraq and Afghanistan.

    6). For electrical power generation ALONE, a 2008 Defense Science Board Task Force report noted that Army generators consume about 26 million gallons of fuel annually during peacetime but 357 million gallons annually during wartime.

    Finally,

    These forces are wholly dependent on a supply line based on two roads on either side of the Euphrates which stretch some 400 miles (about 650 km) from Kuwait north towards Baghdad.

    It is along these roads that gasoline, food, ammunition, and all other sinews of war must be transported by truck convoy.

    Two roads of 400 miles each add up to 800 miles of highway to defend ­ an impossible proposition in the face of a sustained people’s war by the Shiites of the lower Euphrates.

    The Iraqi resistance understood early on that these truck convoys represented a grave vulnerability for the occupation forces, and this has been the key to their most effective weapon so far, the improvised roadside bomb or IED.

    This vital aorta of supplies could now be cut in several places at once by the Shiite guerrillas of the Mahdi army or related groups.

    An assault on Iran – regardless of how limited – would most likely cause the Mahdi Army to deploy all along the supply line.

    Firstly, he has said no such thing. You are guilty of gullibility from MSN talking heads. He has said – “The Zionist regime in Israel cannot last and will be swept from the pages of time”. Where do you get ‘nuking Israel’?

    > Correct. I fully agree that there is not a quote that he is going to nuke Israel. This is a runaway lie. He did not say that. But it does not mean that he doesn’t think it.

    :blink:

    So, your argument here is you know what another person thinks.

    Whew! You got me beat hands down with that one!

    . But he has made many statements that show his desire to have Israel gone.

    Untrue.

    In fact, he has offered time and time again to negotiate with Israel – but not with the Zionists regime.

    You combine Zionism and Israel – but they are not the same thing.

    I would say that you need to make up your mind on this one. Because you have made it clear that no country on earth, let alone Iran, can invade the United States at all, let alone decimate her. Iran has a one in a million chance of beating the US militarily.

    Again, you’ve missed the power of asymmetrical response. Iran doesn’t need to invade the USA.

    She can cripple the nation economically by merely shutting down the Gulf.

    And even that chance in fleeting and would take a ton of lucky breaks.

    You’re trapped – like many in the military – in understanding what ‘victory’ means in the context of warfare in the Middle East.

    By your anaylsis, we won in Iraq and Afghanistan. But I wonder why we are still fighting there 8 years later, then….

    . The delta between weapons was relatively small during those times when compared to the difference between the US military weaponry and most of the world, with a very few exceptions. Give Custer a single Bradley fighting vehicle and not a single indian walks away from that confrontation. You have a penchant for bringing in historical facts like this that don’t apply when viewed more critically. You should stop that.

    They are absolutely pertinent.

    If, in fact, your point was valid – how can you explain Vietnam, Iraq and Afghanistan failures?

    The wargame rules also did not allow for many different deterrents that would have been effective such as laying naval minefields and a vastly increased air support. It also put the vessels in harms way prior to initiating the air strikes that we have made a signature of our method of operation. The preceding air strikes would eliminate almost the entirety of the small boats and planes that van Ripen was allowed to start with intact. So it is nice fodder for folks like you to throw out as evidence that Iran will beat us, but it wasn’t rooted in the reality of how such a conflict would play out.

    Of course, like a poker hand, the play won’t be known until the end of the play. So who “knows” how it will play out.

    However, you neglect a critical point.

    To launch an attack, US bases are and US ships MUST enter within the range of Iranian missiles.

    As demonstrated by the Falklands War, even the older Exocet missiles were devastating.

    Here is the fact:
    The Argentine Navy had only 5 of the air-launched AM.39 Exocet anti-ship missiles when the war began.

    3 hit their targets, resulting in the sinking of two ships.

    The Iranian missiles are massively more superior in ability and in numbers.

    A loss of an aircraft carrier or other major vessel would be the most significant military loss since WW2.

    The US, in modern times, has not suffered battlefield losses as experienced by the British, French, Russians, Iranians nor Iraqis.

    The last major, sudden, battle field loss of that magnitude was Kasserine Pass – where US forces lost 6,500 men in a day – which politically threatened the American moral and war effort. (See the very interesting book ‘Kasserine Pass – Baptism of Fire’)

    Note – Midway, the US lost 550 men…..

    A modern carrier loss could claim thousands….

    But of concern – in contradiction to your claim regarding the war game – was the official conclusion – repeated here:

    The sinking of the Fifth Fleet was ignored and the war games declared a success for the “new war-fighting concepts” adopted by Gen. Kernan

    ’nuff said.

  44. BF@11:44pm/June23. Pretty much. Obama also tied up the student vote as well I believe, as Ahmadinejah did not. At the moment I hear of a massacre in Iran? I am very troubled. This is Iranian with no help from the Shah, if it’s true. This culture has inbred elements.

  45. A very touching article. I believe it to be more difficult for Obama to take caution than is perceived. The bickering of politicians is only showing their lack of maturity in reaching an agreement on anything. Both sides would rather bury themselves before admitting that the other side is right. That being said, the Republican party jumped on Obama from the moment he declared to let the Iranians handle this themselves.

    It really is a shame. A call for Obama to take a stronger stance can only lead to armed intervention in Iran. This is a situation that will have no winners in Iran, the United States, or anywhere in the world. To see my own country so divisive over a war in an area we’re still trying to get out of pains me.

    I guess I can only hope that the casualties stay low, and the politicians keep their hands from each others throats.

  46. Again, USW. This site provides education, debate(for with the ammo(!), a place for novice questions, and reflection. Peoples of peace and justice(blind as it may be), need and appreciate your site.

  47. Black Flag says:

    By USWep’s definition, the USA has now invaded Somalia

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/06/24/AR2009062403495_pf.html

    U.S. Sends Weapons to Help Somali Government Repel Rebels Tied to Al-Qaeda

  48. Khamenei is a killer and someone that we don’t want. the green in iran will win.neda death in freedom way.i am a student in iran-tehran.70 milions of iranian people dont want the Islamic Republic. we want freedom.my name is ali

    • Ali,

      If the people desire freedom, by their daily action of being free, it will happen.

      Good luck.

    • Good luck to you, Ali. I will pray that you and all the green are successful and safe.

      Keep us informed of your progress. I hope to see you here again.

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