The Looming Threat of Iran

Iran Flag ImageI promised Black Flag that I would make this the topic for this evening. And it is about time that I addressed it. We have watched Iran for years and seen their rhetoric, their realities, their revolution. The western media has, no doubt, contributed to the negative image that Iran has in so many minds. I will have plenty to say here on the subject of Iran. I have studied that country for most of my adult life. I have been there. I know the people, the structure of their government, and their position relative to the United States. I find it a fascinating country. I also find them a scary country, and for some very good reasons. We are now in the midst of a Presidency that is interested in discussing things with them on a diplomatic level, and I have no issue with that. However, Obama should be aware that he cannot rely on those diplomatic measures to sway the opinion of a government that is quite radical at its heart. So tonight I open the discussion on Iran. The one request that I have for everyone is to please refrain from ranting against them merely because they are a muslim country. The fact that they are muslim has relevance. Treating being muslim as a general slur does not.

Black Flag has often used the statement that Iran is a country with no desire to act with force against other countries. His logic is that they have not done so in an act of aggression in over 300 years. This is an illogical conclusion. And BF should know better. The relevant history, first of all, begins in 1979, at the time of the revolution. Prior to that, the current government was not in place. And we are now dealing with the current government, not any of the others for the 260 years prior to that.

iran khomeini flagThe revolution in Iran is often thought of as being merely religious in cause, but that is not entirely the case. Religion was the catalyst for the revolution, but it was not the cause. The cause was the fact that the Shah of Iran was very western supported and very western in his ideals. This is something that is not accepted in the fundamentalist wing of Islam. It was not a sentiment unique to Iran. Many don’t know the true history of Al Qaeda. Al Qaeda actually got its beginnings in Saudi Arabia and grew out of a belief that the Western world was polluting the muslim populations, and was therefore a true threat to Islam itself. The US supported Mujahideen went to Afghanistan to fight the soviets, and later many of them became the base of the Al Qaeda movement, including Bin Laden. Fundamentalist muslims see western society as a direct threat to the muslim religion. And that is an important thing to remember when discussing Islam, and is therefore a very pertinent fact in discussing Iran.

Making this worse were the common intrusions of the United States into the business of Iran. Iran was seen as a strategic ally, They were one of the most powerful countries in the Middle East, and that meant oil. Additionally, they held a long border with our most hated rival, the USSR. Western powers on many occasions meddled in Iranian politics, including the support of a military coup. The Shah of Iran prior to the revolution was heavily supported by the US, and was brutal and bad to the people of Iran. The Shi’a muslims were treated especially bad.

This is how the Iranian Government handles homosexuality

This is how the Iranian Government handles homosexuality

So it is completely understandable why the Iranian government might be untrusting and resentful towards the government of the United States.

Now the reality of today. The Iranian government is particularly brutal towards some of its citizens. There is no denying this fact. Citizens are controlled by the theocracy in ways that most Americans cannot imagine. The recent crackdown on the protesters of the Iranian election were a window into how the government there deals with its citizens. To claim that they are not capable of taking that violence outside of their borders is simply unrealistic. A government willing to kill its own citizens is certainly willing to kill those outside of its citizenry. They are a violent and brutal government when they feel the need to be. They have a large, although aging and broken, military. They have Soviet era equipment. They did not build the army they did merely for defense. Much of their equipment is offensive in nature, and they are willing to use it if there is a fight that they feel they can win.

Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah and Iranian president Ahmadinejad

Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah and Iranian president Ahmadinejad

And to claim that they don’t operate outside of their borders is ignoring the fact. They support, finance, and arm other factions in other countries that are essentially terrorist organizations masquerading as political entities. Lebanon’s Hezbollah is one of the more prominent examples, and Hezbollah has been both a victim and an antagonist in relation to Israel. Iran has also offered support for non-muslim causes such as the Sandinistas in Nicaragua, IRA in Ireland, and anti-apartheid struggle in South Africa. In the War in Iraq, many insurgents have been found to be Iranian or using Iranian provided weaponry. The US listed Iran as one of the foremost supporters of terrorism in the world. While I am always skeptical of simply believing the US government, I do believe they are a major player in that realm, if not the most active.

Take away the headscarf and it doesn't look so different than the US

Take away the headscarf and it doesn't look so different than the US

There is an unseen side of the Iranian people as well. As someone who has spent time around them, it MUST be pointed out that the revolutionary members of Iranian society are a vast minority in that country. While the government is somewhat radical and often violent, the people of Iran are not. Much like the US, the actions internationally of Iran are not an accurate representation of the people of the country. They are far more manipulated by the state owned and run media there than most imagine. I always feel the need to point out that mothers in Iran want the same things for their children that mothers in the USA want. They are regular people with a different religious belief. Nothing more and nothing less. No one on this blog would wish to be judged on the actions of our federal government. I urge you to extend the same courtesy to the people of Iran. Some of the kindest, gentlest, most intelligent, and most moral people I know are Iranian born and bred, and live there today. The country has some of the same political discourse that we have here. They are not a backwards country. They are not the third world. Iran is a nation of wonderful people and that is why I will never support the idea of wiping that country out completely.

Despite the claims otherwise, Iran does not like Israel one bit. They do not feel that they are a legitimate entity. They do not support Israel’s right to exist. And the President of Iran is a member of a faction that believes that Israel must be destroyed. BF loves to point out the fact that he semantically has said this or not said that and it is, therefore, a fallacy that Iran wishes to see the destruction of Israel. Having spent enough time studying and being in Iran, the government is very clear that Israel will eventually be destroyed. That isn’t not a made up fact. It is a reality that must be weighed in order to properly discuss how to deal with Iran.

Iran Bomb TableWhich brings us to the discussion at hand, and that is the nuclear debates around the country. First and foremost, do not believe for one fraction of one second that Iran only wants to develop nuclear power and has no non-peaceful purpose for doing so. They are surrounded by nuclear powers and they see the benefit of having the bomb. Pakistan, India, Israel, the US, Russia, and China are all far more powerful on the world stage right now, and that is in part due to having nuclear capability. Iran wants that power and that respect. They are developing nuclear weapons. To deny it is to be naive, in my opinion. I am open for discussion on this matter, but you have a tough sell to convince me otherwise. D13, as well, seems to have studied this extensively, and with some of the same insight and access as I, and I think he shares that opinion. He can weigh in for himself.

Iran has been, and continues to be, seeking the ability to possess nuclear weapons. There have been multiple round of sanctions imposed on Iran for continuing to enrich Uranium, failing to cooperate with IAEA, and developing nuclear warhead capabilities. The bottom line is that the world has taken a stand against Iran’s nuclear program. Sanctions are stifling for the country, but do not seem to stop the government from pursuing its agenda. Much like North Korea, Iran is willing to allow its people to suffer if need be.

Iran MissileThis is a difficult decision to make. On one hand, Iran is a sovereign nation. They have every bit as much of a right to develop a nuclear energy program as anyone else. Until they show that they are going to use it on someone, who are we to say they cannot do so? It is nothing short of hypocritical for the most nuclear armed nation on earth, the only nation to actually use the nuclear option, to claim that anyone else does not have the sovereign right to do exactly as we have done, in the name of national defense. While I certainly see the threat, the liberty and freedom guy in me says I have no right to tell Iran what to do, until they use that nuclear program to attack another nation.

On the other hand, Iran is far more of a threat than some are willing to admit. They have shown countless times their willingness to wage war on other nations, even though they have done so in the smartest of ways, covertly. To allow them to continue puts many countries in that region at great risk, with Israel being the most apparent target. But Israel is not the only target. A nuclear Iran would have the ability to exercise control over the entire middle east.

So the topic is now on the table. I look forward to the discussions that follow.

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Comments

  1. Good Morning! I look forward to today’s topic, more for the learning aspect.

    G!

  2. Hmmm something I picked up on in all that was this “IRA in Ireland” from the list of terrorists that Iran has supported. I am wondering if you know that the IRA would not have survived if not for funding from the United States, millions of dollars were funneled to the IRA through groups setup in the States.

    As regards with Iran, they want nuclear weapons so they can play with the big boys. I am sure they are well aware what would happen to them if they used a nuclear weapon.

    • The problem, Bob, is that

      (A) I’m not so sure that (some of) the leadership in Iran would particularly care what would happen if they used it – some of them view the destruction of Israel as a God-sent duty. As such, repercussions are irrelevant. They will do what they must.

      (B) Even having the bomb, and the threat of its use, allows a nation a substantial amount of leeway that we do not wish them to have on the world stage. Imagine if they support a terrorist group which we feel requires a military response on our end, we may be someone hesitant to get into a fight with a trigger-happy nuclear power.

      • You will probably find that the leadership in Iran are far more interested keeping themselves in power and money than being heated to 10 million degrees in a fraction of a second.
        We can play the “what if” game all day. Why should we as a group of nations who possess and continue to develop nuclear weapons be able to tell a sovereign nation that they cannot possess and develop nuclear weapons?

      • Well, firstly, I don’t think that we should possess and continue to develop nearly nearly a fraction of what we have. To be completely honest, I’m not sold that we should have any nuclear weapons at all. However, if we didn’t, would the nations who do possess them use them to threaten us? I can’t say.. maybe someone who was around in the cold war can shed some light…

        Secondly, while I agree that many in the Iranian leadership are probably more interested in continued power than becoming a radioactive goo, I suspect that this is also an element who do not share these priorities. What if, what if, what if.. but I am not inclined to allow technology capable of destroying whole cities to fall into the hands of people who may have an inclination to use them.

        Would you give your son a gun to defend himself? Sure, why not, right? But what if there were a chance (let’s say 1 in 10) that he would shoot the school bully* instead?

        *Let us not delude ourselves here. I may be (nominally) Jewish, but Israel is absolutely a bully. It has been victimized and terrorized, without a doubt, but it is still a dangerous and aggressive nation – maybe it has to be to survive, but we shouldn’t ignore hard truths simply because they aren’t a threat to us.

        • We should not continue to develop nuclear weapons but we do lets not confuse ourselves on what we would like to happen and what reality is.

          We have the inclination to use nuclear weapons, we would not possess them otherwise. Nukes were used in WW2 and were seriously considered in Korea and Vietnam. I lost you in your second to last paragraph, please clarify.

          • “Would you give your son a gun to defend himself? Sure, why not, right? But what if there were a chance (let’s say 1 in 10) that he would shoot the school bully* instead?”

            Iran claims their intentions are peaceful. So we have the choice of intervening and stopping or allowing this. So the question is, do we allow Iran a weapon to defend itself. And that seems fair, until we consider that there is a very real chance that they will use these nukes to take out the local bully (Israel). Given that, should we allow it?

            • We should try very hard to convince them they don’t need it.

              That means they have nothing to fear from us or our friends.

              We have no right to take direct, or covert, action to prevent them from getting it.

              If they are irrational then we will pay a price down the road, probably war.

              If we continue down the current path, we will sacrifice our soals as a free nation. And we will still pay a price down the road.

          • Why should it be us that allow it or not, what gives us that right?

            • Also Israel can take care of themselves they have lots of nuclear weapons (which nobody seems to have a problem with).

              • Lots of people have problems with Israel’s nukes.

                And, no, they won’t use them on Iran. They’re not stupid enough to use them except as a last resort.

                The Israeli hard-liners do scare me a bit though…

              • Why are you certain Israel will not use nukes but there is a possibility that Iran will use nukes?

              • Israel will absolutely use its nukes. As a last option. If faced with destruction with their backs to the sea, Israel will do what it feels it must. The Jewish people have a long memory. They remember the diaspora and will not allow a re-occurrence so long as they have a single ounce of strength left with which to fight. For 5,700 years, they have been picked on, bullied, murdered, tortured, scapegoated, and shunned. They will not be so quick to give up the homeland they paid for with the blood of millions. They will use their weapons if they feel it is the only way.

                But neither will they be trigger-happy. They have been in several wars and never one used, threatened, or even considered the nuclear option. Divided though the Knesset is, life is sacred to the Jews. It is in our laws that all other laws many be sacrificed to the preservation of life. It is the first tenant of the Jewish collective persona, and one of the main reason I choose to call myself one in spite of the fact that I do not really believe in God in the first place. An orthodox rabbi will eat non-kosher food on the Sabbath food if his life depends on it, and he will do so with the full knowledge that it is permitted by Jewish law.

                There are radical Jews who not believe this and there are individual lunatics who happen to be Jewish. But they are marginalized. The government would never allow them to make the decision to launch, now would it ever allow said weapons to fall into their hands.

                Can the same be said of radical Muslims in Iran?

              • Don’t bet on it. How serious are those in power in Iran for the opportunity to usher in the 12th Iman?

              • I don’t know.. do you want to take a chance on it that a few take it seriously enough to act?

                I don’t.

              • It appears that the rest of the world is not terribly concerned.

                Myself, I don’t hesitate, as a result, I’m still alive.

              • If you are trying to argue that Israels government is rational, sane and peaceful compared to Irans you will probably lose that one.

          • It should be us because nobody else is going to.

            • No what gives us the right to tell a sovereign nation what they can and cant do?

            • Because if we don’t, they very well might nuke Israel. Though you might disagree, I feel that there we have a moral obligation to try to prevent mass murder when and where we can.

              Or some weapons might “get lost” and wind up in terrorist hands (then turn up in New York), if you get my drift. What if, what if, what if.. but I prefer not to just take my chances when the stakes are that high.

              • No your talking about a possible consequence of Iran having nuclear weapons, again what gives us the right to tell a sovereign nation what they can and cant do?

              • Because I don’t recognize the “right” of a sovereign nation to threaten mass genocide.

                Just as you would not allow your neighbor to amass huge quantities of nerve gas without taking action, despite their “sovereign right” to do so, neither can we as a nation allow another nation to do so. It is absolutely hypocritical. But it still must be done.

                Perhaps you would call the police. But if the police wouldn’t take the steps necessary to stop it, can you honestly tell me you wouldn’t take matters into your own hands for your own safety and the safety of others?

                Sovereign is a ridiculous term for a nation. It implies an absolute right to do whatever you want so long as you do not actually harm another sovereign. You make no allowance for threatening behavior. You make no allowance for the oppression of its people. You make no allowance for regional stability. The world is not black and white, no matter how much you and Flag wish it was.

              • Oh I disagree with Flag on many things but I agree with him on this.

                Iran is currently surronded by thousands of US troops, they have had there government meddled with to the detriment of the Iranians by the West. The US and Britain have invaded two countries on their borders.
                We as international agressors who develop and possess nuclear weapons are trying to tell them they cannot develop nuclear weapons because we claim they are aggressive.
                All this while we are worried about a small state who has recently been proven to have committed war crimes and recently engaged in what can only be described as a massacre and also possess nuclear weapons which they claim not to possess. No I can fully understand why Iran want nuclear weapons and I cannot see a reason why we can dictate what they can and cant do, not only is it hypocritical it is also morally wrong.

              • Iran is currently surronded by thousands of US troops
                Bob please explain this staement.

              • Bob see #12

  3. Mrs. Weapon says:

    Bob:
    I agree with your last statement. I know Weapon will disagree with me, but what gives us the right to tell someone they cannot have something but we can? Yes, it is a very dangerous stance but why do we get to make that decision?

    • Ma’am, I haven’t seen you post directly here before, and it is nice to make your acquaintance. I hope today finds you well.

      That said, what gives us the right to dictate to another country is that someone has to. Imagine you were out in public and saw two men in a raging argument. One man is threatening to kill the other. He reaches into his pocket, pulls out a gun and then starts to load it. Do you not think that, opportunity permitting, you have a moral and ethical obligation to stop him from loading that gun? You cannot know his ultimate cause, but the risk that he will use it is paramount. Once loaded, it becomes much harder and dangerous to act.

      But I do see both sides and am open to persuasion – that’s just my take for now.

      • Except when you approach the men who are arguing you are already covered in blood with a smoking gun in your hand after you have just been on a killing spree yourself.

        • So it’s hypocritical, but it still saves a life..

          And many your recent killing spree will give them cause to take you seriously. Who knows?

      • Matt:

        I would like you to provide some rational defense of your assertion that I have a moral and ethical obligation to stop the guy from loading his gun.

        • Common Man says:

          JAC;

          I have pondered this position that both you and BF take, and I am confused.

          In a distant post I asked BF how he would respond to witnessing a mugger assualtinig an innocent person. He indicated his family obligation would prevent him from interfering, since he was the provider and his commitment to his family was more important than risking his own safety.

          I cannot get my mind around this. I am not indicating it is a wrong, or a right position, just that I cannot uderstand from where it originates.

          In my post below I reference your neighbor amassing dangerous chemicals, etc., and choosing not to ignore it. How is this different than not allowing someone to “load a gun”, or is it.

          Although I don’t know that I could ever take a similar stance, I am interested in understanding the mind set.

          BTW: Initially i didn’t think this related to today’s discussion, but in retrospect it is.

          P.S. BF; In referrencing you I was paraphrazing since i cannot recall the exact response, but I think I painted the senerio correctly. Please correct me if I was wrong (as I am sure you will), but your thoughts are also requested.

          CM

          • CM:

            The root is that as a human being my absolute moral obligation is to my own survival and thus continuance of my blood lines.

            Thus I have no moral or ethical obligation to act in a manner that jeopardizes my existence or that of my family. And thus I also have a right to take action against others who jeopardize me or my family.

            At the same time, it does not mean that I would not take some action or that BF would not take some action. In fact in my younger days I did intervene in such situations, more than once. I paid a hefty price in surgical bills for one such intervention. And in one instance I unkowingly intervened on the wrong side, a point that BF has also made in this discussion.

            That was pre-family. Now I have a higher obligation to make sure my children get the support they need to live full lives. That requires that I stay alive and sound of mind as long as possible. Today I would avoid the conflict if I perceived imminent danger to my safety, unless I thought it posed a threat to me and my family. And my avoidance would be made on moral and ethical grounds.

            Those who have argued with BF and I on this always get stuck on whether we would take action in and of itself. But that is not the correct debate. The debate is whether we have a “moral or ethical obligation” to act. The answer to that is a resounding NO.

            Does that help clear it up a little?

            JAC

            • Common Man says:

              JAC;

              I understand your position, and I agree to an extent.

              However, those that seek evil may eventually get around to executing said evil upon you, and as a result of not being challenge prior, may have now amassed enough strength to warrant you defenceless.

              CM

              • CM:

                The example you use is part of the calculations one must make. That is why I mentioned, “unless I percieve he is also a threat to me and my family”.

                The example provided however, would lead one to conclude this is just an escalating argument between two people.

                The actual action I would take, if any, would depend on all the factors in place at the time. And it would depend on my situational awareness and the extent to which I had thought out possible actions in advance. You see, if you think you might intervene in these types of situations, you should prepare with mental exercises covering various situations long before such action is needed.

                But once again, I have no MORAL OBLIGATION to take direct action to save a stranger. To place a moral obligation on such an act places the PRIMACY of survival of a stranger over my own survival. Thus removing my right to existence.

                Are we getting closer?
                JAC

            • Convincing to a point.

              You say you have an obligation to your family, and I accept that.

              But that does not discount your obligation to prevent a murder.

              Perhaps your family obligation is overriding. But that does not abolish the other obligation. Thus, if you cannot fulfill both, you must pick the more important.

              That is why I chose the example where the man is loading the gun. He cannot shoot you as it is not yet ready to fire. In the real world, Iran cannot attack the US with sufficient power to kill, only mildly injure. But if we wait, they may gain such power. Thus the US is not risking it’s ability to exist (ie family obligation – adding, isn’t Israel family to us? They are our ally after all…), so it must act upon it’s secondary obligation.

              • Matt:

                “But that does not discount your obligation to prevent a murder.”

                And what “obligation” is that?

                You still have not provided a rational argument for your claim that I have a moral and ethical obligation to save another.

                You have simply stated it to be true. Please try again.

                JAC

              • This is one slippery slope, Matt. I have a very different view of what is moral (and don’t need a lecture on why it is reasonable or not). I too don’t agree that you stand your ground (for some obligation to self and family. What happens when the family is threatened? Do you let the young die so you can protect yourself? I subscribe to the more humane definition of morality (which is why I can’t buy into USW’s social Darwinism).

                That said, I don’t believe there’s anything any of us can do short of pre-emptive strikes (which Im’ totally against now after the Iraq debacle) … so it’s live and let live (or die) … the can of worms has been opened.

              • Bottom Line says:

                Mathius Caulfield

          • CM

            P.S. The primacy of the moral obligation to protect ones existence is also the root that supports your right to be free, to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

            If we do not have the right to exist according to our nature then we have no rights at all. If we do not place a moral priority on our own survival and thriving then we assure our very destruction.

  4. Sorry USW this is way off subject today, but a friend sent this to me this morning and this really got me pissed off. Talk about back door deal making in Washington. Reid and his bunch need to be taken out in 2010. 👿

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703746604574461434007876034.html

    • Unfortunately, this doesn’t surprise me. And punish the Pharmaceutical companies? I don’t see that actually happening.

  5. Bottom Line says:

    The answer is to do nothing. Let them have their nukes. If/when they use them, they die. Problem solved.

    • Sure, because once everyone has nuke pointed at their enemies, nobody is possibly going to let fly. And once enough are launched, I’m sure that radiation will stay put place instead of, you know, spreading out and ending all life on earth.

      For reference, read On The Beach by Nevile Shute. Fiction, but gives you a good perspective.

      • Nuclear Iran is IMO a much more immediate and consequential threat than, say, “Climate Change”.

        • Sure, but does that mean we should ignore climate change? I’m not sold on whether it’s an issue at all, but I do think it deserves lots of study and attention.

          Immediate yes, but consequential? Not if the predictions are right..

      • Bottom Line says:

        Read “The Catcher In The Rye”.

        • Hated it.

          • oddly I wasn’t a fan of it either. I am open to the idea that I simply didn’t “get” it.

            • Bottom Line says:

              This is part of what I got from it.

              Holden Caufeild describes his dream where he is standing near a cliff in the rye feild watching children play. The Rye grass is too tall and the chidren can’t see the cliff. They are in danger so he stays there to catch them before they accidently run off to their deaths. He’s “THE CATCHER IN THE RYE”. He kind of romanticises the dream as he describes it to his fathers friend/uncle figure.

              His response to Holden is a quote:

              Wilhelm Stekel – “The mark of the immature man is that he wants to die nobly for a cause, while the mark of a mature man is that he wants to live humbly for one.”

              Moral of the story:

              Be wise enough to know when/when not to say it’s not my place or problem. Don’t be stupid and get yourself in an un-necessary mess. Know when to NOT adopt a problem.

              • All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men [and women, of course,] do nothing. -Edmund Burke*

                *Probably apocryphal, there’s no evidence that he ever actually said this, but the sentiment stands.

              • Bottom Line says:

                It’s not about denying responsibility, it’s about knowing when and when NOT to do so.

              • “All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men [and women, of course,] to listen to the rants of mercantilistic men, and act on it as if it was their own intention.”

          • Bottom Line says:

            I am not at all suprised. It’s one of my favorites.

            As for Iran, My best guess is that…

            1. Israel(or someone else) takes them out before they are able to back their threats with a nuke.

            2. They get their nukes, and play M.A.D. like everyone else. Nobody wants to be the jackass that starts it, even Iranians.

            3. They’re actually stupid enough to launch nukes. War ensues and Iran quickly loses.

            • Therein lies the problem. If they’re stupid enough to launch, even if they lose quickly (and they would), the damage is already done. Iran launches, Israel launches, and the Middle East glows in the dark for the next 50 years. Meanwhile, some of the most holy sites of 1.5 billion Muslims, 2.1 billion Christians, and 14 million Jews are completely and irrevocably destroyed.

              Adding, roughly a third of the remaining worldwide Jewish population would be wiped out.

              It’s not “somebody else’s problem,” it’s everyone’s problem. And that makes it yours and mine.

              • For more on the S.E.P. phenomenon..

                http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Somebody_Else%27s_Problem

              • Bottom Line says:

                So? What should we do about it? Bomb them into 4298374289374927 B.C.?

                No. Israel & middle eastern nations can do it just fine by themselves. I say just let them. It really isn’t our responsibility any more than it is anyone else’s.

              • v. Holland says:

                I don’t begin to know whats best when it comes to Iran or the Middle Eastern conflicts but I do know that we are supposed to be Israels ally-does that not mean we owe them more than just “let them go at it”

              • Bottom Line says:

                Israel isn’t really our ally. Why would they pay $$ to steal our secrets? Ally? NOT. They are just a totally un-necessary liability.

              • v. Holland says:

                I’m not sure dismissing our ally’s as unimportant, even if they aren’t perfect may not be the best way to go in the volatile world we live in.

              • Bottom Line says:

                I’m not suggesting that they are unimportant, just that they aren’t worth the trouble. They’re perfectly capable of defending themselves. And they aren’t really on our side like the charactors they play on TV.

              • And V. Holland

                Could you provide what they have done for the USA as an ally for the USA to send troops on their behalf?

                PS: Attacking the USS Liberty works against Israel – not in its favor.

              • v. Holland says:

                The bombing of the USS Liberty was ruled a horrible accident in the middle of a war. I would have to believe that they did it on purpose to hold them accountable. As far as what Israel has done for us-I don’t know but they haven’t been around for long and one must admit that they have been kept rather busy.

              • Your basic premise is the political actors are all insane.

                Yet, you argue with me that the opposite is true.

                Which one, Mathius?

  6. While I continue to understand (and agree) with President Truman’s use of the atom bombs to end the war with Japan, times have changed and there is just no way for any nation state (especially one surrounded by nuclear armed nations) to not want the same capability. Why some justifiably so say the pandora’s box was opened against Japan.

    From the nation state point of view, sanctions against its people shouldn’t be a concern (for the purpose of defense/deterrence). Might they use them for a preemptive strike? Sure, but so might we (as they would reply). It’s a tough situation but one I don’t think sanctions or nuclear arms negotiations will ever solve. I wouldn’t trust any treaty with anybody (including us). Nation states are always going to look out for their best interests and sanctions just aren’t enough of a deterrent. Unfortunately, this will only be resolved if (or when) somebody fires the first round. Chances are it’ll happen in the middle east and all we can do is hope we’re not dragged into it.

  7. Oh, crap, USW….you know I cannot ignore this one. Writing now….hope that it is not too long.

    Have a great day. I will be back on this topic before the day ends…..

  8. Common Man says:

    All;

    I don’t believe that the majority of Iranian people really want to wipe out all of the world-wide non-believers. I don’t believe that the majority of pre-WWII Japanese or German people wanted to declare war on the rest of the world. I don’t believe that the majority of Iraqi citizens wanted to live in poverty under the reign of Saddam any more than the Iranian’s do under their current regime.

    The key to all this is that the majority of those citizens didn’t, couldn’t or wouldn’t do anything to rebel enough to stop a maniacal regime. Therefore we have the history we have, and we are making the history we support/promote.

    If we pull out of the Middle East we may or may not see a different degree of terrorism, who knows. If the world would have listened to Churchhill, Germany might not have advanced as far as they did. If we would have followed Patton’s advice and advanced on Russia, we night not have witnessed the Cold War and the associated wars it sparked. What if, what if, what if???

    I don’t believe diplomacy will have any positive effect when dealing with a radical government. It hasn’t in the past.

    Maniacal individuals have been stirring the world pot since we all walked erect, just like there have always been bully’s in the school yard. If they are left to enforce their specific desire, other, possibly many people will suffer.

    I know how to deal with the school yard bully and have done so myself; but that was an individual choice.

    I am not sure how to handle these type of individuals/regimes other than to ensure they don’t amass enough power to render devistating harm.

    You wouldn’t stand by and let an untrustworthy neighbor amass great volumes of toxic chemicals or dangerous explosives, so we probably shouldn’t allow maniacal individuals/governments either.

    Maybe we just get out and let those countries in the Middle East know that “You are on your own, figure it out. However, be advised: Any further attempt to amass WMD’s, or attempts to render harm upon the citizens of the US will result in a retaliation of extreme prejudice!”. Of course this position only works if we really do intend to act upon our threat.

    I don’t know…

    CM

    • “You are on your own, figure it out. However, be advised: Any further attempt to amass WMD’s, or attempts to render harm upon the citizens of the US will result in a retaliation of extreme prejudice!”.

      And thus we become the bully.

      I can understand “or attempts to render harm …” but “attempts to amass WMD’s” is way too vague. We were led into an absolutely absurd war with faulty intelligence (and I believe that Iraq had WMD’s but weren’t in any way shape or form going to use them against “us”). Imagine starting a nuclear holocaust because of the same mistakes?

      Unfortunately, we’re all up against it on this. There is no way to halt the proliferation of nuclear weapons without a nuclear war (yes, you read right). Nobody (no nation state) is going to give them up (disband nuclear weapons). It would be dumb (as well as strategically insane) to do so … which is why we can’t stop others from wanting the same weapons.

      • Common Man says:

        Charlie;

        My biggest fear: everybody has nuclear weapons, makes me shudder especialy when some of those in possession are nuts! It is even more crazy when you realize that someday one of those “nuts” might just launch one out of sheer spite.

        Ever see the movie Dr. Strangelove?

        CM

        • I agree but I don’t see a way around stopping them from obtaining the things (that pandora’s box syndrome). I do believe it’s how civilization will end, unfortunately (always the optimist–but that comes with being a Bills fan). I just don’t see how we can seriously sanction a nation state from developing something that makes perfect sense for them to obtain.

    • Showing a willingness to act can effect the actions of even radical nations.

      Today in Tripoli, the leader of Libya, Col. Moammar Gadhafi, publicly confirmed its commitment to disclose and dismantle all weapons of mass destruction programs in his country. He has agreed immediately and unconditionally to allow inspectors from international organizations to enter Libya. These inspectors will render an accounting of all nuclear, chemical and biological weapons programs and will help oversee their elimination.

      http://www.pbs.org/newshour/bb/africa/july-dec03/libya_12-19.html

  9. Semi-literate baloney. “Vast minority”??? LOL!!!
    Iran actually spends far less on its “offensive” military than the rest of her neighbors.

  10. On Sept. 1st, 2001, an international conference was held in Durban, South Africa. Yasser Arafat, Fidel Castro, and spokesmen for Iran, Iraq and the League of Arab States all spoke condemning Britain, Israel, and the United States. The conference grew out of a previous meeting held nine months earlier in Tehran. They barred US citizens, Jewish or members of the Baha’i faith. Why does this matter? Since then, and since 9/11, has the call for violence from Iran decreased?

    Genocide is an ugly word, and should not be used lightly. Most still shudder when thinking of the horrors of WW2. Never again became a phrase understood worldwide. But it did happen again in Rwanda in 1990, over one million Africans
    killed in an ethnic genocide, ignored by the UN. What has been happening in the Sudan?

    And the Iranian President has repeatedly called for the destruction of Israel.
    Should the US care? Why would we help or even go to war for Israel? Denounce them and step aside and we would likely have a lot better relations with all countries in the Middle East. For a time. Once they eradicate the Jewish nation, they will turn their focus on Christian nations. History has taught us that you must take a stand at certain times. The question is, when is the proper time?

    Posted above, would you give your son a gun to defend himself? Add to that, what would you do to protect your child? Would you place yourself in front of a car or bullet? Would you teach your child killing Jew’s is a holy endeavor, that will be rewarded with eternity in paradise? And then strap a bomb to your child, and send them into a crowded restaurant? And if you had an atomic bomb, instead of a normal one, what would you do? The reasoning we use for how we conduct ourselves has no bearing on how the zealots that rule Iran will act.

    We invaded Iraq for defying UN mandates for weapons inspections. Iran is guilty of the same offense. Is there a difference? The other Arab nations do not want Iran to have nuclear weapons. There has been recent cross border violence from Pakistan. In my not so humble opinion, we back Israel. If they think the threat is great enough to risk war, it is better to do so at the time and place we choose.

    • LOI:

      I do not wish to belittle or under estimate the dangers in the world. But let me give you something to stew over for awhile.

      We can not resurrect a nation predicated on the core values of freedom, liberty and justice at home, while continuing to deal with the rest of the world in the same manner as the last 100 years.

      To do so will continue create a contradiction of immense proportion, almost certainly bringing us right back to where we are now. Both internally and externally.

      If we are to create the moral core needed for our own freedom, then the mere existence of a percieved future threat or chance, or risk of future war, is not enough to justify unilateral action. The threat must meet the clear and present danger criteria.

      Hope your day is great.
      JAC

      • Hi JAC….how are ya, my friend. I am a proponent now, of just sitting back and watching the world implode. Iran will get its Nuke. No one will stop it….then we shall see. Iran does not have peaceful intentions but that is my opinion. (I like to think based on relevant criteria.)

        “The threat must meet the clear and present danger criteria.” I have seen this quoted on here by many…but with no credible definition as clear and present danger is subjective, and therefore, interpreted differently.

        Anyway, how are you doing my friend?

        • D13:

          Ah, the old “if the easy, standard definitions of simple words do not allow me to act in the evil way I want, I will claim the easy, standard definition of simple words to be complex, subjective, unclear and open to wide interpretations, so that I can act any way I want!” game…

          • Actually no BF…..you misunderstand. I have seen your definition of it and others….but you make the assumption that yours alone is the only definition….I submit that it is not. Nothing more.

        • D13

          I am doing quite well today Colonel, thanks for asking. Have you cleared the alkali from your system yet?

          I concur that Iran has intentions of expansion and domination. Whether this includes geography or just influence is yet to be seen. I think your assessment of Persian memory and desires are spot on. It is the mixing of this with the Islamic desire to restore its Caliphate that creates a toxic brew.

          We have shat within our own nest to the point we have no choice, in my humble opinion, but to clean up our own house. So as you, I am prone to wish Israel the best and get the hell out of the way. And we need to prepare for what may be the coming of the mother of all wars.

          I am curious about one key point you made. I have felt for sometime that our greatest mistake in the middle east was actually our failure to capture the flag so to speak, when we had the chance with Russia. But I also have a hard time believing that the Russians, i.e., Soviets, would be so short sited as to believe they can coexist with a nuclear, Islamicized, Persian Empire. I see the Russians as trying to play both sides against the other in hopes of keeping their empire intact.

          Would the Iranian’s forget that the Russians were having fun in Iraq before we arrived? I wonder if they view the Russian support of Saddam as support of their enemy and thus the Russians are also on the hit list.

          Would enjoy hearing your further thoughts on all of this. I find it a pleasant distraction from plotting the new revolution….heh, heh, heh!!

          The Best to You and Yours
          JAC

          • Yes..it takes awhile to clear the dust from ones system….cough cough…hack hack….drink a beer..clears the sinuses.

            Ok…As much as I hate to agree with BF on anything…I will agree on one of his economic approaches. Russia has an economic interest in Iran… a huge one. However, I firmly believe that Russia will allow and arm Iran, hence, an economic alliance one way and a protectionism treaty another way. That is why I believe that Russia is a player in this for Russia and no one else.

            As to capture the flag…hmmmm….lost possibility, of course. I see the world as a huge chess board. Iran’s focus will be the Middle East. I see Iran playing chess with three queens on the board and Pakistan, Egypt, Syria, and the Saudis having only pawns and rooks. I see Pakistan crumbling to a nuke armed Iran. That takes Pakistan out of the mix. I see, as I spoke, of an unholy alliance possibility with Israel to keep Iran in check. I see the Russians keeping Iran in check as well, economically….Russia needs Iran and Iran will need Russia. India is no threat whatsoever to anyone. China and Russia have an uneasy truce with a wary eye on each other. Hence a stalemate….while under the stalemate, like a cease fire, there will be manipulations made covertly. Russia’s eyes will be on Western Europe and economic viability and will get no interference from the West(England, Canada and the US). So, tactically speaking….check the South…move West. A nuke armed Iran will check the South…and an economically strapped Russia will move West Control Georgia and the pipeline…effectively control Afghanistan and its pipelines through Iran and its alliances with the warlords.

            tactically speaking, of course.

            However, that is my opinion and observation from a poor ole’ Texas boy with no foresight

      • JAC,

        Good day sir. Have pondered a bit, sorry, stewed. I am very sure the US has a terrible foreign policy, in general. We have troops in too many countries, at great expense, but little gain. The military is there at the behest of the diplomats, and that is where many problems start. Our government, like the rest of the world, uses them like pieces of a chess/checkers game.

        Clear and present danger works for me. I stand with my answer, back Israel. If they feel the danger is great enough to act, with the current POTUS unable to stop them, they must feel the danger to be very clear, present and dire.

        • LOI:

          I don’t mind standing back at letting them have their fun.

          But why should we “back” Israel?

          Thats the part I don’t understand. Just being an Ally is not enough for me because that doesn’t make them family. Just kinda friends for the moment.

          We can not ask our citizens to die for another country anymore than we can ask them to sacrifice themselves for the “greater good”. One moral imperative leads to the other.

          For me to back Israel I would have to see clear and present danger to the USA.

          Not attacking here, just asking for your clarification.
          JAC

          • Suppose it goes back to WW2, first they came for the Jews… If a violent Islamic faction is in charge of a country with nuclear weapons, and have stated a desire to see Israel wiped from the face of the earth, makes me think we would be next. I have no wish for war, but if it is to be fought, I am selfish enough to want to do it on their land, not ours. If they will destroy(or try) Israel for being Jewish, they will attack the US for the same reasons.

            • have stated a desire to see Israel wiped from the face of the earth

              You consistently repeat the lie, but it will not make it true.

              • Nor will your words take back the arms Iran has supplied for use against Israel. They gave Palestinian fanatics rockets with range, but no accuracy to fire at civilian targets.
                I may be wrong about his words, as I depend on others to translate and report. Their actions do not need translation. If they want to live in peace, they need to demonstrate that by assisting in peace with Israel and the Palestinians.

              • They have.

                They have offered everything from mediator to host.

                All refused.

                They will not leave the Palestinians defenseless no more than AIPAC will leave Israel defenseless.

                AIPAC just has more access to military money than Iran has in their entire country.

          • Talking as if I were an American Statist and Mercantilist.

            Israel give the US intelligence, feet and ears on the ground, a missile base, strike and seizure cability on the Suez Canal and an unsinkable aircraft carrier in the Middle East.

            With this relationship, the US can maintain its hegemony over the oil.

            • It was this relationship that was lost with the Shah – to the great distress of Statist America, who will never forgive the Iranian people for this.

    • Hi LOI…..you are up and at it today.

      Leave Israel alone. It will do fine. I am even predicting an unholy alliance between Israel and Syria, Egypt, and the Saudi’s to hold Iran in check. leave Iran alone….it will get the nuke. Then we shall see.

      🙂

      • D13,

        Have not read all post yet, some are a bit longer winded than others.
        (hope I haven’t hurt Flag feelings)
        A thought for you sir, considering today’s POTUS, what message has Israel been given regarding military action against Iran? I submit
        their reasoning, based on the consequences to Israel, would be to not
        start a conflict unless it were absolutely necessary. And at this time, I think it would be in our best interest to back them if they make such a move.

        • Mt latest intel reports and readings are that we have advised Israel to lay off. I have seen the reports and the recommendations, and we will not publicly back them at all. But under the table, Israel will have the backing of just about everybody in the region,,,,including a couple of their arch enemies, for the time being.

          I do not foresee any attack in the near future.

    • Polilogism at work.

      “We invaded Iraq because of UN mandates”

      First, the US did not invade Iraq due to UN mandate – the UN did not authorize any such invasion.

      Secondly, if ignoring UN mandates is a reason for invasion, Israel should have been first on the list as it is the #1 nation with the most resolutions against it – more than all other nations combined.

      • “polylogism”

        … to which persons of different races, social classes or time periods use different kinds of logic.

        Polylogism is the belief that different people or groups of people have different forms of logic.

        Those that believe in polylogism must therefore deny of the principle of contradiction.

        • Are you making fun of me because I live in Arkansas again?

          For the record, I am not a native, and I wear shoes(makes higher math hard at times).

          If you are implying I am a racist, read my post again. I do not care why they hate us so much, nor do I hate them. I wish for peace, they are advocating violence including genocide. I have written in the past that we could live peacefully with the vast majority of Islamics. But it appears the Iranian government is controlled by that faction that will not allow peaceful co-existence.

          Regret that I have not yet read your response to USW yet.
          Fetching slippers and a snack to curl up with.

  11. State TV: Iran Wants to Buy Nuclear Fuel for Research Reactor, Fails to Accept U.N. Plan

    http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,569272,00.html

    So they have rejected a UN plan that allows them reactor fuel, but would make weapons development more difficult. And they think we don’t trust them.

    • v. Holland says:

      delaying tactics
      Part of Speech: n pl
      Definition: an action taken to defer or postpone an event in order to avoid the outcome or gain an advantage; also written delay tactics

  12. Bob….I was not interested in seeing a map…..I know what the mideast looks like. My question was to explain your statement. I did not know that the US had troops in Pakistan, Armena, Azerbaijan, Turkey or Turkmenistan. I know we use to have troops in Turkey but I thought they had all been pulled out.

    • Stop being pedantic, I would class the majority of their borders having US troops on the other side as well as carrier groups in the mediterranean and gulf as being surrounded.

      • Bob…I am not being “pedantic”…..when you say “surrounded” you make it sound like we have circled up the wagons and there is absolutly no escape for Iran except to bomb their way out with nukes….My point is there is no justification because there is no “surrounded”…..just because there are troops in the area does not mean there is a threat….I would say the US troops that are there have there hands full with what they have on this side of Iran’s boarders.

        • Please tell me what would have happened if Russia invaded Canada, Mexico and also had carrier fleets on the West and East coast during the cold war? Hey there are just troops in the area, no threat right? You would have been fine with it? You are thinking from an American perspective, try and think from an Iranian perspective.
          This is the scenario they are living in, an aggressive country that has aided and abetted their enemies and thrown their country into political turmoil for their own gain now has troops in the countries that take up the majority of your border. Does that sound like a good situation to be in?

          • I agree with you completely…but, Iran has been working on nukes before we got in the area…..that is my dilemma…if we use the idea that the only reason Iran wants nukes is because we have scared them by our troops being around them, then how do we explain them wanting nukes before that era?
            I don’t want you to misunderstand me. I know why Iran is afraid at this point in time, but it is like alot of things the US does I can’t uphold the justification of it being done.

    • Even better…

      http://www.eurasianet.org/departments/insightb/articles/eav070809.shtml

      So the vast majority of the Irans borders have US troops on the other side.

      • So…….what is the point Bob? If this constitutes a threat to Iran…then this justifies the nuclear option?

        However, I am for pulling completely out of the region….totally. Leave them to their own devices….but….do not come back and say..We should have done something.

        Let Iraq go…Let Afghanistan go…leave the Israelis alone….bite the economic bullet and leave. Leave Iran alone….totally alone and you will see how peaceful they are.

        • Put yourself in Irans shoes for 1 second and imagine what situation they are in. They are surrounded by a nation that constantly makes threats against them, a nation that has just conquered their neighbours, a nation that has meddled in their politics for decades through covert means, a nation that gave money and arms to their enemies. Getting nuclear weapons would be my number 1 priority in the hope that I would be left alone.

          Oh I fully agree with your last paragraph, how I wish that would happen.

          • Yessir…all good points. But you make the US the villain here. I think there is enough blame to go around.

            I wish the US would not be a world policeman. I do not like that role. Did not like it when I was in control of combat units and do not like it now. I hate war. Been there, seen it, done it, suffered it…wish it on no one.

            I would like to see what happens if we were not there at all. I do not think we will be left alone….but it would be interesting.

            • Oh Iran are not perfect by any means but trying to share the blame equally is foolish. Look again at BF’s list to see what the West has done with Iran.

              If we pulled out of the middle east and stopped the constant meddling what would the countries wish to attack us for? Oh and please dont use something pointless and silly like “because they hate our freedoms!!!”. I have heard that so many times but it still makes me laugh.

              • Bob:

                Look at the list of things Russia did to Iran and then ask yourself:

                Why are the Russians and Iranians such good buddies?

                Remember, it takes more than one to keep a good fight going.

              • Enemy of my enemy is my friend.

                The US has pushed Iran into Russia and China – whose arms are wide and welcoming.

              • Hmmmmm why would Iran be more friendly with a country that offers weapons and money to it rather than a country that gives weapons and money to its enemies?
                Sorry JAC I just dont know, will have to get back to you on that.

              • Bob:

                The Russians did exactly the same thing to Iran. They interfered with their govt. putting in their puppets, undermining their constitution.

                So if the argument is that Iran hates us becasue the CIA helped orchestrate a coup against a democratically elected official, then………why don’t hey hate the Russians for doing exactly the same thing?

                Perhaps it really isn’t all about the CIA coup. Or perhaps the current regime sees a chance to use the Russians to their advantage. Meaning they will turn on the Russians if we leave.

                And by the way Bob, who was supplying weapons and other tech to Iraq, Irans enemy, prior to the US invasion?

                See Bob. The math is not as simple as you want to make it.

              • The list means nothing, Bob. There can be a list in every country out there. There is no doubt that the US has made many international mistakes…no doubt at all. every country does. This is not to mean we are blameless. It is not only the meddling, Bob, but one of culture and beliefs as well.

              • Every country has a list, every country has done terrible things. We are talking about the US and Iran relations here so I would say the list is pretty relevant. You didnt answer my question.

        • Yes, D13, let’s see.

          I’ll bet on a nation that – for longer then the USA has been a country! – they have not invaded another nation.

          vs.

          In a period of time of less than 70 years, this country has invaded … how many countries, D13? … do I need to count them for you?

          Which one would you bet on?????

          • I am not thinking militarily BF. Iran has no military capable of anything except blowing their own noses.

            I am well aware of history and your claims. They are well founded. I use logic. I will also lay claim to the belief that the US is an aggressive nation and has been. I do have a problem with some of the actions we have taken, as you know….

            As to the bet, let’s expand that beyond military. Let’s expand it to support of terrorist factions. Iran learned well from the cold war with the US and Russia. Surrogates do much better.

            But, as you know, only time will tell. So, don’t go all in on the pocket aces until the flop. The flop has not happened yet. Actually, I hope that I am wrong. But, I am a chess player and a rather good one. I do not think that I am wrong. But, only time will tell, and I will not turn my back on them and I will not trust the world stage….at all….anywhere.

          • What about hostile acts to other nations?

            Attacks on shipping

            Lloyd’s of London, a British insurance market, estimated that the Tanker War damaged 546 commercial vessels and killed about 430 civilian mariners. The largest portion of the attacks were directed by Iran against Kuwaiti vessels, and on 1 November 1986, Kuwait formally petitioned foreign powers to protect its shipping. The Soviet Union agreed to charter tankers starting in 1987, and the United States offered to provide protection for tankers flying the U.S. flag on 7 March 1987 (Operation Earnest Will and Operation Prime Chance).[43] Under international law, an attack on such ships would be treated as an attack on the United States, allowing the U.S. Navy to retaliate. This support would protect neutral ships headed to Iraqi ports, effectively guaranteeing Iraq’s revenue stream for the duration of the war.

            (There are of course, little details left out, but their ability and willingness to disrupt the worlds markets and economy is a threat they like to trump)
            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iran%E2%80%93Iraq_War

            • Under International Law, trading with a combatant in a war breaches neutrality, and the laws of war provide that it is a fair target – regardless of which flag it flies.

              • Little details, as I indicated.
                Disrupting the worlds oil supply,
                another little detail that wars are fought for. I think Iran would be better thought of if they did not threaten this so much, remember their boasting of their new torpedoes?

              • …in response to the US Navy sailing its third task force to the Gulf during Bush’s preparation to attack Iran…

  13. Black Flag has often used the statement that Iran is a country with no desire to act with force against other countries. His logic is that they have not done so in an act of aggression in over 300 years. This is an illogical conclusion. And BF should know better.

    You have your logic upside down.

    Your tag on the post “Looming threat” – is based on ….what? It must be based on some historical action to demonstrate such a threat.

    Where is it?

    You cannot point to Iran as a threat with any example for over 300 years

    Yet, you seem compelled – illogically – to claim from something there is a threat!

    Yet, when I can point to repeated invasions of independent nations by the USA – you see no threat!

    You suffer from polylogism – you use different logic depending on the subject at hand.

    The relevant history, first of all, begins in 1979, at the time of the revolution. Prior to that, the current government was not in place. And we are now dealing with the current government, not any of the others for the 260 years prior to that.

    You excuse your ignorance of current affairs of Iran because you shorten your memory.

    Iran’s relevant history extends back past into World War Two, when Britain and Soviet Union invaded.

    The revolution in Iran is often thought of as being merely religious in cause, but that is not entirely the case. Religion was the catalyst for the revolution, but it was not the cause. The cause was the fact that the Shah of Iran was very western supported and very western in his ideals. This is something that is not accepted in the fundamentalist wing of Islam.

    No, sir.

    Again, your shorten memory causes you to make serious mistakes in understanding.

    The US/UK overthrow of Prime Minister Mohammad Mosaddeq is the catalyst of many of the current tensions.

    During WW2, British oil companies via mercantilism seized Iran oil fields. After the war, Mosaddeq was democratically elected – and threw out the British oil interests.

    Britain and the American CIA overthrew the democratically elected Mossaddeq and replaced him with the dictator Shah.

    The CIA then trained the Shah’s Secret Police – SAVAK – (“It has been described as Iran’s “most hated and feared institution” prior to the revolution of 1979, because of its torture and execution of regime opponents”) – to quell dissidents.

    The Shah handed back the oil field to American and British interests – pocketing billions for himself and his cronies.

    Further, the Shah became the #1 Ally of the US in the region and the US center of operations for (1) blocking Soviet machinations into the Middle East (2) supporting favorable regimes such as Saudi Arabia from a secure base.

    The SAVAK succeeded in destroying the politic moderates – leaving only two primary groups;

    – those that by fear avoided political activism
    – Mullahs who had no fear of ‘earthly’ consequences and who actively resisted the Shah.

    The general population saw that only the Mullahs had the courage to stand up against the tyranny, and this became the basis of their support.

    It is a terrible brainwash by the Western Media to believe a nation at a whim follows behind a religious leader because … he speaks well? The people are easily brain washed (well, maybe if they are Americans)?…The people are stupid?

    It was not a sentiment unique to Iran. Many don’t know the true history of Al Qaeda. Al Qaeda actually got its beginnings in Saudi Arabia and grew out of a belief that the Western world was polluting the muslim populations, and was therefore a true threat to Islam itself.

    Please cite your source for this contention.

    Al Qaeda was founded in Pakistan…
    Notes of a meeting of bin Laden and others on August 20, 1988 indicate al-Qaeda was a formal group: ‘basically an organized Islamic faction, its goal is to lift the word of God, to make His religion victorious.’ A list of requirements for membership itemized the following: listening ability, good manners, obedience and making a pledge (bayat) to follow one’s superiors.[*^ Cooley, John K. (Spring 2003). “Unholy Wars: Afghanistan, America and International Terrorism]

    According to Wright, the group’s real name wasn’t used in public pronouncements because “its existence was still a closely held secret.”[45] His research suggests that al-Qaeda was formed at an August 11, 1988 meeting between “several senior leaders” of Egyptian Islamic Jihad (The organization’s original primary goal was to overthrow the Egyptian Government and replace it with an Islamic state. Later it broadened its aims to include attacking the United States and Israel interests in Egypt and abroad), Abdullah Azzam (a highly influential Palestinian Sunni Islamic scholar and theologian, and a central figure in preaching for defensive jihad by Muslims to help the Afghan mujahideen against the Soviet invaders) and Osama bin Laden, where it was agreed to join bin Laden’s money with the expertise of the Islamic Jihad organization and take up the jihadist cause elsewhere after the Soviets withdrew from Afghanistan.

    The US supported Mujahideen went to Afghanistan to fight the soviets, and later many of them became the base of the Al Qaeda movement, including Bin Laden. Fundamentalist muslims see western society as a direct threat to the muslim religion. And that is an important thing to remember when discussing Islam, and is therefore a very pertinent fact in discussing Iran.

    And Fundamentalist Christians see the Non-Christians as a direct threat to the Christian religion.

    *sigh*

    Because, again, you have a shortened memory, the only thing you can possibly think that Iran has against the USA is religious differences!

    Dig a bit deeper, USWep. It will the issue clear.

    This is how the Iranian Government handles homosexuality

    This is how Christian’s handle homosexuality.
    en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gay_bashing

    This is how Christian’s handled blacks

    Now the reality of today. The Iranian government is particularly brutal towards some of its citizens.

    The USA government is particularly brutal to its citizens.

    upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/6/65/Kent_State_massacre.jpg/250px-Kent_State_massacre.jpg

    ..and especially slaughtering unarmed People in other countries…
    http://www.spike.com/video/kevin-sites-fallujah/2681679

    There is no denying this fact.

    Yes, and I have more pictures of US atrocities of that fact in my files, if you’d like to post them too….

    Citizens are controlled by the theocracy in ways that most Americans cannot imagine.

    The US is controlled by a theocratic oligarchy in ways most of the world fears.

    The recent crackdown on the protesters of the Iranian election were a window into how the government there deals with its citizens.

    The recent crackdown on protesters of the American Imperialism was a window into how the government here deals with its citizens.

    G20 Police Action Forbes Hall , Pittsburgh
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CwI8oGOnfwk

    Police Riot & Brutality in Pittsburgh after the G20
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iy12jhIaDms&feature=related

    Israeli crackdown on US citizens in Israel
    Israeli bulldozer driver murders American peace activist

    electronicintifada.net/artman2/uploads/1/rach3.jpg

    electronicintifada.net/v2/article1248.shtml

    US Vows to Stand By Israel Over Gaza War Crimes
    The Goldstone Report details war crimes committed by both Israel and Hamas during the January invasion of the Gaza Strip. Rice vowed that the United States would stand by Israel “as a loyal friend” and fight against the report in the UN Security Council.

    The UN Human Rights Council formally endorsed the report last week, with the US one of the few nations to vote in opposition to it. It has been referred to the Security Council, but the US is expected to use its veto power to prevent it from going any farther.

    www2.ohchr.org/english/bodies/hrcouncil/specialsession/9/FactFindingMission.htm

    To claim that they are not capable of taking that violence outside of their borders is simply unrealistic.

    Nice strawman, USWep.

    I did not make this claim regarding “capability”.

    They are certainly capable of acting outside their borders – they fought a 10 year war with Iraq (in which the USA was actively supporting Iraq) demonstrates this.

    To clue you in, I said:
    They have not INITIATED ANY INVASION of any country in 300 years

    A government willing to kill its own citizens is certainly willing to kill those outside of its citizenry.

    All governments kill innocent people.

    http://www.rawa.org/temp/runews/2009/10/19/photos-of-civilians-injured-by-us-nato-forces-in-afghanistan.html

    They are a violent and brutal government when they feel the need to be. They have a large, although aging and broken, military. They have Soviet era equipment. They did not build the army they did merely for defense.

    You have no incident, nor documentation to prove this.

    Much of their equipment is offensive in nature, and they are willing to use it if there is a fight that they feel they can win.

    A weapon can be used in many ways. I am sure when you look at a rifle in a US Army hands, you see it is for defense.

    Yet, using your polylogism, when you see a rifle in Iranian Guard hand, you see it is for offense.

    And to claim that they don’t operate outside of their borders is ignoring the fact. They support, finance, and arm other factions in other countries that are essentially terrorist organizations masquerading as political entities.

    Let’s see…..

    CIA Fact Book:
    USA Military Expenditures
    $663,700,000,000

    NATO Military Expenditures
    $1,049,875,309,000

    Global Military Expenditures
    $1,470,000,000,000

    Israeli Military Expenditure
    $13,300,000,000

    USA Military Aid to Israel
    $2,762,805,000

    Iranian Military Expenditure
    $6,300,000,000

    Lebanon’s Hezbollah is one of the more prominent examples, and Hezbollah has been both a victim and an antagonist in relation to Israel. Iran has also offered support for non-muslim causes such as the Sandinistas in Nicaragua, IRA in Ireland, and anti-apartheid struggle in South Africa.

    USA/CIA supported acts of terrorism

    1953

    Iran – CIA overthrows the democratically elected Mohammed Mossadegh in a military coup, after he threatened to nationalize British oil. The CIA replaces him with a dictator, the Shah of Iran, whose secret police, SAVAK, is as brutal as the Gestapo.

    Operation MK-ULTRA — Inspired by North Korea’s brainwashing program, the CIA begins experiments on mind control. The most notorious part of this project involves giving LSD and other drugs to American subjects without their knowledge or against their will, causing several to commit suicide. However, the operation involves far more than this. Funded in part by the Rockefeller and Ford foundations, research includes propaganda, brainwashing, public relations, advertising, hypnosis, and other forms of suggestion.

    1954

    Guatemala — CIA overthrows the democratically elected Jacob Arbenz in a military coup. Arbenz has threatened to nationalize the Rockefeller-owned United Fruit Company, in which CIA Director Allen Dulles also owns stock. Arbenz is replaced with a series of right-wing dictators whose bloodthirsty policies will kill over 100,000 Guatemalans in the next 40 years.

    1954-1958

    North Vietnam — CIA officer Edward Lansdale spends four years trying to overthrow the communist government of North Vietnam, using all the usual dirty tricks. The CIA also attempts to legitimize a tyrannical puppet regime in South Vietnam, headed by Ngo Dinh Diem. These efforts fail to win the hearts and minds of the South Vietnamese because the Diem government is opposed to true democracy, land reform and poverty reduction measures. The CIA’s continuing failure results in escalating American intervention, culminating in the Vietnam War.

    1956

    Hungary — Radio Free Europe incites Hungary to revolt by broadcasting Khruschev’s Secret Speech, in which he denounced Stalin. It also hints that American aid will help the Hungarians fight. This aid fails to materialize as Hungarians launch a doomed armed revolt, which only invites a major Soviet invasion. The conflict kills 7,000 Soviets and 30,000 Hungarians.

    1957-1973

    Laos — The CIA carries out approximately one coup per year trying to nullify Laos’ democratic elections. The problem is the Pathet Lao, a leftist group with enough popular support to be a member of any coalition government. In the late 50s, the CIA even creates an “Armee Clandestine” of Asian mercenaries to attack the Pathet Lao. After the CIA’s army suffers numerous defeats, the U.S. starts bombing, dropping more bombs on Laos than all the U.S. bombs dropped in World War II. A quarter of all Laotians will eventually become refugees, many living in caves.

    1959

    Haiti — The U.S. military helps “Papa Doc” Duvalier become dictator of Haiti. He creates his own private police force, the “Tonton Macoutes,” who terrorize the population with machetes. They will kill over 100,000 during the Duvalier family reign. The U.S. does not protest their dismal human rights record.

    1961

    The Bay of Pigs — The CIA sends 1,500 Cuban exiles to invade Castro’s Cuba. But “Operation Mongoose” fails, due to poor planning, security and backing. The planners had imagined that the invasion will spark a popular uprising against Castro -– which never happens. A promised American air strike also never occurs. This is the CIA’s first public setback, causing President Kennedy to fire CIA Director Allen Dulles.

    Dominican Republic — The CIA assassinates Rafael Trujillo, a murderous dictator Washington has supported since 1930. Trujillo’s business interests have grown so large (about 60 percent of the economy) that they have begun competing with American business interests.

    Ecuador — The CIA-backed military forces the democratically elected President Jose Velasco to resign. Vice President Carlos Arosemana replaces him; the CIA fills the now vacant vice presidency with its own man.

    Congo (Zaire) — The CIA assassinates the democratically elected Patrice Lumumba. However, public support for Lumumba’s politics runs so high that the CIA cannot clearly install his opponents in power. Four years of political turmoil follow.

    1963

    Dominican Republic — The CIA overthrows the democratically elected Juan Bosch in a military coup. The CIA installs a repressive, right-wing junta.

    Ecuador — A CIA-backed military coup overthrows President Arosemana, whose independent (not socialist) policies have become unacceptable to Washington. A military junta assumes command, cancels the 1964 elections, and begins abusing human rights.

    1964

    Brazil — A CIA-backed military coup overthrows the democratically elected government of Joao Goulart. The junta that replaces it will, in the next two decades, become one of the most bloodthirsty in history. General Castelo Branco will create Latin America’s first death squads, or bands of secret police who hunt down “communists” for torture, interrogation and murder. Often these “communists” are no more than Branco’s political opponents. Later it is revealed that the CIA trains the death squads.

    1965

    Indonesia — The CIA overthrows the democratically elected Sukarno with a military coup. The CIA has been trying to eliminate Sukarno since 1957, using everything from attempted assassination to sexual intrigue, for nothing more than his declaring neutrality in the Cold War. His successor, General Suharto, will massacre between 500,000 to 1 million civilians accused of being “communist.” The CIA supplies the names of countless suspects.

    Dominican Republic — A popular rebellion breaks out, promising to reinstall Juan Bosch as the country’s elected leader. The revolution is crushed when U.S. Marines land to uphold the military regime by force. The CIA directs everything behind the scenes.

    Greece — With the CIA’s backing, the king removes George Papandreous as prime minister. Papandreous has failed to vigorously support U.S. interests in Greece.

    Congo (Zaire) — A CIA-backed military coup installs Mobutu Sese Seko as dictator. The hated and repressive Mobutu exploits his desperately poor country for billions.

    1966

    The Ramparts Affair — The radical magazine Ramparts begins a series of unprecedented anti-CIA articles. Among their scoops: the CIA has paid the University of Michigan $25 million dollars to hire “professors” to train South Vietnamese students in covert police methods. MIT and other universities have received similar payments. Ramparts also reveals that the National Students’ Association is a CIA front. Students are sometimes recruited through blackmail and bribery, including draft deferments.

    1967

    Greece — A CIA-backed military coup overthrows the government two days before the elections. The favorite to win was George Papandreous, the liberal candidate. During the next six years, the “reign of the colonels” — backed by the CIA — will usher in the widespread use of torture and murder against political opponents. When a Greek ambassador objects to President Johnson about U.S. plans for Cypress, Johnson tells him: “Fuck your parliament and your constitution.”

    Operation PHEONIX — The CIA helps South Vietnamese agents identify and then murder alleged Viet Cong leaders operating in South Vietnamese villages. According to a 1971 congressional report, this operation killed about 20,000 “Viet Cong.”

    1968

    Operation CHAOS — The CIA has been illegally spying on American citizens since 1959, but with Operation CHAOS, President Johnson dramatically boosts the effort. CIA agents go undercover as student radicals to spy on and disrupt campus organizations protesting the Vietnam War. They are searching for Russian instigators, which they never find. CHAOS will eventually spy on 7,000 individuals and 1,000 organizations.

    Bolivia — A CIA-organized military operation captures legendary guerilla Che Guevara. The CIA wants to keep him alive for interrogation, but the Bolivian government executes him to prevent worldwide calls for clemency.

    1969

    Uruguay — The notorious CIA torturer Dan Mitrione arrives in Uruguay, a country torn with political strife. Whereas right-wing forces previously used torture only as a last resort, Mitrione convinces them to use it as a routine, widespread practice. “The precise pain, in the precise place, in the precise amount, for the desired effect,” is his motto. The torture techniques he teaches to the death squads rival the Nazis’. He eventually becomes so feared that revolutionaries will kidnap and murder him a year later.

    1970

    Cambodia — The CIA overthrows Prince Sahounek, who is highly popular among Cambodians for keeping them out of the Vietnam War. He is replaced by CIA puppet Lon Nol, who immediately throws Cambodian troops into battle. This unpopular move strengthens once minor opposition parties like the Khmer Rouge, which achieves power in 1975 and massacres millions of its own people.

    1971

    Bolivia — After half a decade of CIA-inspired political turmoil, a CIA-backed military coup overthrows the leftist President Juan Torres. In the next two years, dictator Hugo Banzer will have over 2,000 political opponents arrested without trial, then tortured, raped and executed.

    Haiti — “Papa Doc” Duvalier dies, leaving his 19-year old son “Baby Doc” Duvalier the dictator of Haiti. His son continues his bloody reign with full knowledge of the CIA.

    1972

    The Case-Zablocki Act — Congress passes an act requiring congressional review of executive agreements. In theory, this should make CIA operations more accountable. In fact, it is only marginally effective.

    Cambodia — Congress votes to cut off CIA funds for its secret war in Cambodia.

    Wagergate Break-in — President Nixon sends in a team of burglars to wiretap Democratic offices at Watergate. The team members have extensive CIA histories, including James McCord, E. Howard Hunt and five of the Cuban burglars. They work for the Committee to Reelect the President (CREEP), which does dirty work like disrupting Democratic campaigns and laundering Nixon’s illegal campaign contributions. CREEP’s activities are funded and organized by another CIA front, the Mullen Company.

    1973

    Chile — The CIA overthrows and assassinates Salvador Allende, Latin America’s first democratically elected socialist leader. The problems begin when Allende nationalizes American-owned firms in Chile. ITT offers the CIA $1 million for a coup (reportedly refused). The CIA replaces Allende with General Augusto Pinochet, who will torture and murder thousands of his own countrymen in a crackdown on labor leaders and the political left.

    CIA begins internal investigations — William Colby, the Deputy Director for Operations, orders all CIA personnel to report any and all illegal activities they know about. This information is later reported to Congress.

    Watergate Scandal — The CIA’s main collaborating newspaper in America, The Washington Post, reports Nixon’s crimes long before any other newspaper takes up the subject. The two reporters, Woodward and Bernstein, make almost no mention of the CIA’s many fingerprints all over the scandal. It is later revealed that Woodward was a Naval intelligence briefer to the White House, and knows many important intelligence figures, including General Alexander Haig. His main source, “Deep Throat,” is probably one of those.

    CIA Director Helms Fired — President Nixon fires CIA Director Richard Helms for failing to help cover up the Watergate scandal. Helms and Nixon have always disliked each other. The new CIA director is William Colby, who is relatively more open to CIA reform.

    1974

    CHAOS exposed — Pulitzer prize winning journalist Seymour Hersh publishes a story about Operation CHAOS, the domestic surveillance and infiltration of anti-war and civil rights groups in the U.S. The story sparks national outrage.

    Angleton fired — Congress holds hearings on the illegal domestic spying efforts of James Jesus Angleton, the CIA’s chief of counterintelligence. His efforts included mail-opening campaigns and secret surveillance of war protesters. The hearings result in his dismissal from the CIA.

    House clears CIA in Watergate — The House of Representatives clears the CIA of any complicity in Nixon’s Watergate break-in.

    The Hughes Ryan Act — Congress passes an amendment requiring the president to report nonintelligence CIA operations to the relevant congressional committees in a timely fashion.

    1975

    Australia — The CIA helps topple the democratically elected, left-leaning government of Prime Minister Edward Whitlam. The CIA does this by giving an ultimatum to its Governor-General, John Kerr. Kerr, a longtime CIA collaborator, exercises his constitutional right to dissolve the Whitlam government. The Governor-General is a largely ceremonial position appointed by the Queen; the Prime Minister is democratically elected. The use of this archaic and never-used law stuns the nation.

    Angola — Eager to demonstrate American military resolve after its defeat in Vietnam, Henry Kissinger launches a CIA-backed war in Angola. Contrary to Kissinger’s assertions, Angola is a country of little strategic importance and not seriously threatened by communism. The CIA backs the brutal leader of UNITAS, Jonas Savimbi. This polarizes Angolan politics and drives his opponents into the arms of Cuba and the Soviet Union for survival. Congress will cut off funds in 1976, but the CIA is able to run the war off the books until 1984, when funding is legalized again. This entirely pointless war kills over 300,000 Angolans.

    “The CIA and the Cult of Intelligence” — Victor Marchetti and John Marks publish this whistle-blowing history of CIA crimes and abuses. Marchetti has spent 14 years in the CIA, eventually becoming an executive assistant to the Deputy Director of Intelligence. Marks has spent five years as an intelligence official in the State Department.

    “Inside the Company” — Philip Agee publishes a diary of his life inside the CIA. Agee has worked in covert operations in Latin America during the 60s, and details the crimes in which he took part.

    Congress investigates CIA wrong-doing — Public outrage compels Congress to hold hearings on CIA crimes. Senator Frank Church heads the Senate investigation (“The Church Committee”), and Representative Otis Pike heads the House investigation. (Despite a 98 percent incumbency reelection rate, both Church and Pike are defeated in the next elections.) The investigations lead to a number of reforms intended to increase the CIA’s accountability to Congress, including the creation of a standing Senate committee on intelligence. However, the reforms prove ineffective, as the Iran/Contra scandal will show. It turns out the CIA can control, deal with or sidestep Congress with ease.

    The Rockefeller Commission — In an attempt to reduce the damage done by the Church Committee, President Ford creates the “Rockefeller Commission” to whitewash CIA history and propose toothless reforms. The commission’s namesake, Vice President Nelson Rockefeller, is himself a major CIA figure. Five of the commission’s eight members are also members of the Council on Foreign Relations, a CIA-dominated organization.

    1979

    Iran — The CIA fails to predict the fall of the Shah of Iran, a longtime CIA puppet, and the rise of Muslim fundamentalists who are furious at the CIA’s backing of SAVAK, the Shah’s bloodthirsty secret police. In revenge, the Muslims take 52 Americans hostage in the U.S. embassy in Tehran.

    Afghanistan — The Soviets invade Afghanistan. The CIA immediately begins supplying arms to any faction willing to fight the occupying Soviets. Such indiscriminate arming means that when the Soviets leave Afghanistan, civil war will erupt. Also, fanatical Muslim extremists now possess state-of-the-art weaponry. One of these is Sheik Abdel Rahman, who will become involved in the World Trade Center bombing in New York.

    El Salvador — An idealistic group of young military officers, repulsed by the massacre of the poor, overthrows the right-wing government. However, the U.S. compels the inexperienced officers to include many of the old guard in key positions in their new government. Soon, things are back to “normal” — the military government is repressing and killing poor civilian protesters. Many of the young military and civilian reformers, finding themselves powerless, resign in disgust.

    Nicaragua — Anastasios Samoza II, the CIA-backed dictator, falls. The Marxist Sandinistas take over government, and they are initially popular because of their commitment to land and anti-poverty reform. Samoza had a murderous and hated personal army called the National Guard. Remnants of the Guard will become the Contras, who fight a CIA-backed guerilla war against the Sandinista government throughout the 1980s.

    1980

    El Salvador — The Archbishop of San Salvador, Oscar Romero, pleads with President Carter “Christian to Christian” to stop aiding the military government slaughtering his people. Carter refuses. Shortly afterwards, right-wing leader Roberto D’Aubuisson has Romero shot through the heart while saying Mass. The country soon dissolves into civil war, with the peasants in the hills fighting against the military government. The CIA and U.S. Armed Forces supply the government with overwhelming military and intelligence superiority. CIA-trained death squads roam the countryside, committing atrocities like that of El Mazote in 1982, where they massacre between 700 and 1000 men, women and children. By 1992, some 63,000 Salvadorans will be killed.

    1981

    Iran/Contra Begins — The CIA begins selling arms to Iran at high prices, using the profits to arm the Contras fighting the Sandinista government in Nicaragua. President Reagan vows that the Sandinistas will be “pressured” until “they say ‘uncle.’” The CIA’s Freedom Fighter’s Manual disbursed to the Contras includes instruction on economic sabotage, propaganda, extortion, bribery, blackmail, interrogation, torture, murder and political assassination.

    1983

    Honduras — The CIA gives Honduran military officers the Human Resource Exploitation Training Manual – 1983, which teaches how to torture people. Honduras’ notorious “Battalion 316” then uses these techniques, with the CIA’s full knowledge, on thousands of leftist dissidents. At least 184 are murdered.

    1984

    The Boland Amendment — The last of a series of Boland Amendments is passed. These amendments have reduced CIA aid to the Contras; the last one cuts it off completely. However, CIA Director William Casey is already prepared to “hand off” the operation to Colonel Oliver North, who illegally continues supplying the Contras through the CIA’s informal, secret, and self-financing network. This includes “humanitarian aid” donated by Adolph Coors and William Simon, and military aid funded by Iranian arms sales.

    1986

    Eugene Hasenfus — Nicaragua shoots down a C-123 transport plane carrying military supplies to the Contras. The lone survivor, Eugene Hasenfus, turns out to be a CIA employee, as are the two dead pilots. The airplane belongs to Southern Air Transport, a CIA front. The incident makes a mockery of President Reagan’s claims that the CIA is not illegally arming the Contras.

    Iran/Contra Scandal — Although the details have long been known, the Iran/Contra scandal finally captures the media’s attention in 1986. Congress holds hearings, and several key figures (like Oliver North) lie under oath to protect the intelligence community. CIA Director William Casey dies of brain cancer before Congress can question him. All reforms enacted by Congress after the scandal are purely cosmetic.

    Haiti — Rising popular revolt in Haiti means that “Baby Doc” Duvalier will remain “President for Life” only if he has a short one. The U.S., which hates instability in a puppet country, flies the despotic Duvalier to the South of France for a comfortable retirement. The CIA then rigs the upcoming elections in favor of another right-wing military strongman. However, violence keeps the country in political turmoil for another four years. The CIA tries to strengthen the military by creating the National Intelligence Service (SIN), which suppresses popular revolt through torture and assassination.

    1989

    Panama — The U.S. invades Panama to overthrow a dictator of its own making, General Manuel Noriega. Noriega has been on the CIA’s payroll since 1966, and has been transporting drugs with the CIA’s knowledge since 1972. By the late 80s, Noriega’s growing independence and intransigence have angered Washington… so out he goes.

    1990

    Haiti — Competing against 10 comparatively wealthy candidates, leftist priest Jean-Bertrand Aristide captures 68 percent of the vote. After only eight months in power, however, the CIA-backed military deposes him. More military dictators brutalize the country, as thousands of Haitian refugees escape the turmoil in barely seaworthy boats. As popular opinion calls for Aristide’s return, the CIA begins a disinformation campaign painting the courageous priest as mentally unstable.

    1991

    The Gulf War — The U.S. liberates Kuwait from Iraq. But Iraq’s dictator, Saddam Hussein, is another creature of the CIA. With U.S. encouragement, Hussein invaded Iran in 1980. During this costly eight-year war, the CIA built up Hussein’s forces with sophisticated arms, intelligence, training and financial backing. This cemented Hussein’s power at home, allowing him to crush the many internal rebellions that erupted from time to time, sometimes with poison gas. It also gave him all the military might he needed to conduct further adventurism — in Kuwait, for example.

    The Fall of the Soviet Union — The CIA fails to predict this most important event of the Cold War. This suggests that it has been so busy undermining governments that it hasn’t been doing its primary job: gathering and analyzing information. The fall of the Soviet Union also robs the CIA of its reason for existence: fighting communism. This leads some to accuse the CIA of intentionally failing to predict the downfall of the Soviet Union. Curiously, the intelligence community’s budget is not significantly reduced after the demise of communism.

    1992

    Economic Espionage — In the years following the end of the Cold War, the CIA is increasingly used for economic espionage. This involves stealing the technological secrets of competing foreign companies and giving them to American ones. Given the CIA’s clear preference for dirty tricks over mere information gathering, the possibility of serious criminal behavior is very great indeed.

    1993

    Haiti — The chaos in Haiti grows so bad that President Clinton has no choice but to remove the Haitian military dictator, Raoul Cedras, on threat of U.S. invasion. The U.S. occupiers do not arrest Haiti’s military leaders for crimes against humanity, but instead ensure their safety and rich retirements. Aristide is returned to power only after being forced to accept an agenda favorable to the country’s ruling class.

    In the War in Iraq, many insurgents have been found to be Iranian or using Iranian provided weaponry.

    In the machinations in Iran, all terrorists trying overthrow the Iranian democratically elected government were using USA made and provided weaponary.

    The US listed Iran as one of the foremost supporters of terrorism in the world.

    For most of the world, the USA is considered the #1 terrorist nation.

    While I am always skeptical of simply believing the US government, I do believe they are a major player in that realm, if not the most active.

    By sheer size of funding, capability, and extent, the USA is unparalleled as the single largest player in that realm.

    But that ol’darn polylogism keeps you from seeing that.

    They are far more manipulated by the state owned and run media there than most imagine.

    I agree wholly in regards to People of the USA.

    Despite the claims otherwise, Iran does not like Israel one bit.They do not feel that they are a legitimate entity.

    True. Sorta comes with the brutality and war crimes upon the Palestinian people.

    They do not support Israel’s right to exist. And the President of Iran is a member of a faction that believes that Israel must be destroyed. BF loves to point out the fact that he semantically has said this or not said that and it is, therefore, a fallacy that Iran wishes to see the destruction of Israel.

    It is not a matter of semantics – it is simply not the truth, USWep.

    You are wrong in stating Iran does not believe Israel has a right to exist

    Iran has recognized Israel as a country in 1948. This has not changed.

    Thus, any one who states the opposite is lying. And you have been brainwashed into accepting that lie by US media.

    Pre-REVOLUTION Iran voted in support of the UN General Assembly Resolution 3379 in 1975 which equated Zionism with racism (the resolution, however, was later revoked with Resolution 4686 in 1991, which post-revolution Iran voted against).

    So to finger the current Iranian government to have been ‘out of step’ in claiming Israeli Zionism as racist is a lie.

    Iran has consistently from the founding of Israel recognized it as a country AND recognized Zionism as racist and evil

    Iran is abhorred by the treatment of the Palestinians, and rightly so.

    It sees Israeli actions as the most dangerous catalyst to instability in the region and the world, and rightly so.

    Having spent enough time studying and being in Iran, the government is very clear that Israel will eventually be destroyed. That isn’t not a made up fact.

    It is a lie.

    Iran has stated that the regime in Israel cannot prevail.

    First and foremost, do not believe for one fraction of one second that Iran only wants to develop nuclear power and has no non-peaceful purpose for doing so. They are surrounded by nuclear powers and they see the benefit of having the bomb. Pakistan, India, Israel, the US, Russia, and China are all far more powerful on the world stage right now, and that is in part due to having nuclear capability. Iran wants that power and that respect. They are developing nuclear weapons. To deny it is to be naive, in my opinion.

    Sadly, you are naive.

    You make an assertion completely without proof.

    Iran has signed the NPT.

    Iran has been inspected by the IAEA as per the treaty.

    The IAEA has stated -with no qualifiers- that Iran is not producing nuclear weapon capablity.

    The USA on intelligent services has state -with no qualifiers- that Iran is not producing nuclear weapon capability.

    All nations on earth have the potential to engage in nuclear weapon development. This is not the fault of Iran.

    Iran has been, and continues to be, seeking the ability to possess nuclear weapons.

    You move from a mere assertion without proof (and against volumes of demonstrated counter evidence) to a professing as if it was now fact, in less than 100 words!

    Witness the power of propaganda at work.

    The bottom line is that the world has taken a stand against Iran’s nuclear program.

    Where is the stand against Israel’s nuclear weapon program?

    1.bp.blogspot.com/_a-Su2SAnGYU/St4kcm7CQTI/AAAAAAAALUE/IVBFz9B6uFk/s400/red+alert.jpg

    Sanctions are stifling for the country, but do not seem to stop the government from pursuing its agenda. Much like North Korea, Iran is willing to allow its people to suffer if need be.

    What sanctions?

    All the US action has done is push Iran into the arms of China and Russia.

    Iran MissileThis is a difficult decision to make. On one hand, Iran is a sovereign nation. They have every bit as much of a right to develop a nuclear energy program as anyone else. Until they show that they are going to use it on someone, who are we to say they cannot do so? It is nothing short of hypocritical for the most nuclear armed nation on earth, the only nation to actually use the nuclear option, to claim that anyone else does not have the sovereign right to do exactly as we have done, in the name of national defense. While I certainly see the threat, the liberty and freedom guy in me says I have no right to tell Iran what to do, until they use that nuclear program to attack another nation.

    On the other hand, Iran is far more of a threat than some are willing to admit. They have shown countless times their willingness to wage war on other nations, even though they have done so in the smartest of ways, covertly. To allow them to continue puts many countries in that region at great risk, with Israel being the most apparent target. But Israel is not the only target. A nuclear Iran would have the ability to exercise control over the entire middle east.

    So the topic is now on the table. I look forward to the discussions that follow.

    • …hit enter to early…

      On the other hand, Iran is far more of a threat than some are willing to admit.

      A threat made in the mind of US mentality all on its own – and by such of its own actions, is manifesting it to be real.

      They have shown countless times their willingness to wage war on other nations, even though they have done so in the smartest of ways, covertly.

      Unlike the US who does it in all ways.

      A nuclear Iran would have the ability to exercise control over the entire middle east.

      Impossible.

      As you pointed out, Iran is surrounded by nuclear nations – it has no more ability to ‘control’ the region than Pakistan – and you have not, and cannot make that argument here – you cannot make that argument against Iran.

      • BF….please explain “Iran is abhorred by the treatment of the Palestinians, and rightly so.” I have read both sides of this and I am not sure which one to believe…..all writers paint exactly what they want with their own biases. So I thought I would use your hard drive and see what info you could provide on both sides of the Palestinian conflict. I know Israel says all the Palestinians left of their own accord durning the war because they thought they could come back after Israel was destroyed. I know that Israel does not attack without first being attacked. But I have about given up finding out the exact truth because of all the biases….help me out here if you have the info in your hard drive. Thanks

    • BF,

      I won’t bother to respond to a fairly large portion of your arguments here, but will explain why.

      I did not, anywhere in my post, make the argument that the United States was a good guy in this situation. 80% of what you wrote above was misdirection. If you want to discuss Iran, then let’s discuss Iran on the merits of Iran. I do not suffer from applying logic differently. I see the US for what it is. But the US is not the topic. Eliminate all of the references to the US and what it does from the argument and try again. As an example of what I am talking about: Iran sponsors terrorism. You say the US is the biggest terrorist in the world. Your statement does nothing to prove or disprove that Iran sponsors terrorism. I am well aware of what the US is and is not. I am well aware that you despise the US. But what the US is doing is not the topic. The topic was Iran. Most of what you replied with above was nothing more than anti-US drivel, with very little dedicated to answering the charges against Iran. We aren’t arguing whether the US is good or bad in this situation. We are arguing about whether Iran is a threat…

      You can do better… please do.

      • USWeapon

        I won’t bother to respond to a fairly large portion of your arguments here, but will explain why.

        I did not, anywhere in my post, make the argument that the United States was a good guy in this situation. 80% of what you wrote above was misdirection.

        Good sir, old friend, good buddy.

        That was my point. I was highlighting YOUR FALLACY.

        You attempted to buttress your argument by singularly describing Iran with paint that attempted to show it extreme – by claims of its actions which pale compared to actions of USA or Israel –who you claim are not extreme.

        You used the fallacies of:
        Argument By Emotive Language (Appeal To The People):
        using emotionally loaded words to sway the audience’s sentiments instead of their minds.

        Argument To The Future:
        arguing that evidence will someday be discovered which will (then) support your point

        Amazing Familiarity:
        the speaker seems to have information that there is no possible way for him to get, on the basis of his own statements

        If you want to discuss Iran, then let’s discuss Iran on the merits of Iran.

        I did.

        I used history – more than your shortened version.

        The best you used is the fallacy of argument to the future – proclaiming some future capability that may or may not happen as a reason Iran is evil today.

        Iran sponsors terrorism. You say the US is the biggest terrorist in the world. Your statement does nothing to prove or disprove that Iran sponsors terrorism.

        True.

        But you are the one who is using terrorism as a reason to act.

        Youu presented the conjecture that Iran sponsoring terrorism as a reason to act against them – however, you do not see that perhaps because the USA is sponsoring terrorism is the reason Iran is responding the same way.

        Since the US capability – covertly and overtly – vastly exceeds Iran, it is hard to argue that US action is mere a response to the weakling Iran.

        It is far more probable that it is the weaker party that is in response, not the powerful party.

        You can do better… please do.

        Since you started this post, you first.

        Please show Iran invasion of any nation in the last 300 years.

        Please show Iran, present day, has the offensive capability to threaten the USA or allies.

        Not emotional appeal, not historical revisionism, not conjecture – demonstration by fact and evidence.

        Await with bated breath…

        • That was my point. I was highlighting YOUR FALLACY.

          You attempted to buttress your argument by singularly describing Iran with paint that attempted to show it extreme – by claims of its actions which pale compared to actions of USA or Israel –who you claim are not extreme.

          You used the fallacies of:
          Argument By Emotive Language (Appeal To The People):
          using emotionally loaded words to sway the audience’s sentiments instead of their minds.

          Argument To The Future:
          arguing that evidence will someday be discovered which will (then) support your point

          Amazing Familiarity:
          the speaker seems to have information that there is no possible way for him to get, on the basis of his own statements

          There, you are making a claim that is simply not true. I did not, at any point, claim that the US or Israel was not violent, criminal, or radical, especially in terms of Iran. I discussed Iran, nothing more and nothing less. My point was, and still is, valid. That point being the article was not about the US or Israel. We know their history. We know they have done bad things. The question is whether Iran is a threat. I already know the US is a threat to the world. I already know Israel is a threat to the region. That wasn’t the question. Attempting to prove that those two countries are a threat as a way to disprove Iran is a threat is a fallacy all its own.

          I did.

          I used history – more than your shortened version.

          The best you used is the fallacy of argument to the future – proclaiming some future capability that may or may not happen as a reason Iran is evil today.

          I didn’t use a shortened history. I didn’t discount the past. What I said was that in the relevance of whether Iran is a threat today, is based on the reality of who is in control of Iran today. We can go on a history lesson of why some Iranian leader 200 years ago felt the way he did. But it is not relevant to today’s discussion. We are dealing with THIS regime in Iran, and with today’s realities. So the question is, again, whether today’s regime, which rose to power in 1979, is a threat to the region with a nuclear capability. And if they are, should we have a say or take an action. Nothing more, nothing less.

          True.

          But you are the one who is using terrorism as a reason to act.

          Youu presented the conjecture that Iran sponsoring terrorism as a reason to act against them – however, you do not see that perhaps because the USA is sponsoring terrorism is the reason Iran is responding the same way.

          Since the US capability – covertly and overtly – vastly exceeds Iran, it is hard to argue that US action is mere a response to the weakling Iran.

          It is far more probable that it is the weaker party that is in response, not the powerful party.

          I did not put forth that there was a reason to act. I gave two distinctly different views at the end of my article, one saying we have no right to act, one saying we do, and opened the discussion. I, to this point, have yet to weigh in on what I think we should or should not do. I merely presented the situation, and opened the discussion.

          Further, I am not interested in who is the weaker or stronger party here. That wasn’t the argument. That wasn’t the point of the article. The point was, I shall say again, is IRAN a threat? If so, what, if anything, should we be doing? In using the misdirection of attacking the US and Israel in your arguments, you are failing to engage on those questions. Let’s just operate on the premise that the US is the biggest asshole on the face of the earth. I don’t agree, but let’s just go with that, as that is your belief. Fine, I don’t care. The question is whether a nuclear Iran a good thing? Stop misdirecting and engage.

          Since you started this post, you first.

          Please show Iran invasion of any nation in the last 300 years.

          Please show Iran, present day, has the offensive capability to threaten the USA or allies.

          Not emotional appeal, not historical revisionism, not conjecture – demonstration by fact and evidence.

          I presented evidence above of Iran’s actions outside of its own country in support of terror, in support of groups that threaten our allies. You seem willing to ignore that and say, “well they haven’t directly sent their army out and attacked anyone, so they are no threat and no problem.”

          No one ever proves that a mafia boss ever killed anyone. He sends out his minions to do so. So the mafia boss is no threat to anyone, right? Capone was a great guy who just wanted to make a peaceful life in his community. After all, we don’t have a shred of proof that he killed anyone.

    • BF says: Iran has signed the NPT.

      D13 says: and this means exactly what? You actually believe that this means anything? Really? You are much smarter than this.

      BF Says: Iran has been inspected by the IAEA as per the treaty.

      D13 Laughingly agrees: Yes it has as if the IAEA is a credible entity.

      BF Says: The IAEA has stated -with no qualifiers- that Iran is not producing nuclear weapon capability.

      D13 Simply responds: R-i-g-h-t…..My qualifier will be a year from now. But, then, I suppose you will say that the United States forced them into it. But until I am proven correct..you reign supreme in this statement.

      BF Says: The USA own intelligent services has stated -with no qualifiers- that Iran is not producing nuclear weapon capability.

      D13 Again responds: In actuality, this is correct. It cannot produce the capability…YET. It does not have the operational centrifuge yet. Shortly, though. Then we shall see.

      • D13

        BF says: Iran has signed the NPT.

        D13 says: and this means exactly what? You actually believe that this means anything? Really? You are much smarter than this.

        I am not sure what your confusion is.

        Iran – a country
        has signed – a treaty
        called the NPT – Non-Proliferation Treaty.

        If you, D13 believe treaties are worthless and pointless – then please do contemplate your belief as it will apply to all treaties and agreements the USA has with other nations – and offer your analysis and conclusion of consequences – that, if in fact, they are meaningless – what that will mean to the USA and its people.

        BF Says: Iran has been inspected by the IAEA as per the treaty.

        D13 Laughingly agrees: Yes it has as if the IAEA is a credible entity.

        So far, they have been 100% right. I would give that a strong measure of credibility.

        BF Says: The IAEA has stated -with no qualifiers- that Iran is not producing nuclear weapon capability.

        D13 Simply responds: R-i-g-h-t…..My qualifier will be a year from now. But, then, I suppose you will say that the United States forced them into it.

        No, I would say you are arguing a fallacy – Argument To The Future – because ‘anything is possible in the future’ we must act on it today!

        With this argument, I expect you could ‘prove’ we should nuke Bolivia, because – maybe – they might get nukes in the future too.

        But until I am proven correct..you reign supreme in this statement.

        Yep.

    • BF……”This is how Christian’s handled blacks” I must have missed something where does it say this man was hung by christains????

      • The Klan is a Christian extremist group.

      • Same applies to the “Black Panthers” extremist group. They are Muslim….this game can be played all over the world. Move on.

        • Please do move on, D13 – it is always someone else, and not me, who raises religion – (and often it is you).

          • No BF..it is you that denies the obvious. America to you is a pariah on the world and no one else can do harm…you are no different than the current politics being played now….you play the blame game. It is always someone or something else and you trivialize responses and claim no one else has an answer unless they agree with yours. When counter claims are brought up, you are judge, jury, and executioner.

    • Common Man says:

      Not to respond in favor, or in rebute, but earlier history indicates that have had issues with the Middle East since the 1700’s.

      Prior to the revolution, the only major threat to America’s vital Mediterranean trade came from the Middle East. Styling themselves as “mujahideen-warriors” in an Islamic holy war-Arabic-speaking pirates preyed on western Vessels, impounding their cargos and enslaving their crews. These corsairs, as early American called them, sailed for the independent empire of Morocco and the semi-autonomous Ottoman regencies of Tripoli, Tunis and the Algiers, an area in the Middle East known collectively in Arabic as al-Maghrib, “the west”. Westeners though had a different name for the region, one that evoked its notoriety for greed and ferociousness. They called is Barbary.

      The above paragraph is from the book “Power, Faith, and Fantasy”, by Michael Oren which details America in the middle East from 1776 to present.

      I have not gotten through this yet, as it is a slow read, but so far it has presented interesting history.

      Has anyone else read the book?

      CM

      • CM:

        Have not read it but I’ll bet good money most young folks don’t know that “From the halls of Montezuma to the shores of Tripoli” refers to the very events of which you speak.

        You were begging for a good discussion on the middle east. Are you getting the kind of information you hoped for?

        JAC

        • Common Man says:

          JAC

          It is interesting reading although I wish I had more time to get involved as it was taking place, but alas I must provide for the family.

          I would recommend the book to you and all those interested in broadening your knowledge of our history with the Middle East. It details everything from Morocco recognizing our independence in 1777 to Iraq in 2003.

          I will read through today’s post later this evening and digest everthing.

          It too is cold here today as well as raining and blowing at 20-25. i won’t be setting in a tree this evening, but hopefully in the stand by 6:30 am tomorrow morning. I need to put some additional meat in the freezer.

          Hope all is well with you and yours

          CM

    • My dearest Flagster,

      Thank you for an informative post. I enjoy learning, and realize our country has its faults, and has made mistakes. You say, “You cannot point to Iran as a threat with any example for over 300 years”. I disagree. My example is Germany, 1930’s, when a madman took control. At that time, no one could imagine the horror and devastation a fanatical, charismatic leader could cause.

      President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is such a charismatic leader. Until he starts talking about peaceful resolutions, stops his countries’ promoting terrorism, I think history gives me every reason to suspect dire things from him and his followers. You are free to tell me I am mistaken, but its not likely I will be buying any real estate from you either.

      • Old friend (and occasional foe) LOI

        Thank you for an informative post. I enjoy learning, and realize our country has its faults, and has made mistakes.

        It is not so much the mistakes that are made, but the willingness to exercise caution in the future so not to repeat them – and to the best of one’s ability to deal with the consequences of the mistakes fairly, honorably and with compassion.

        But when one continues to see willful repetition – one cannot claim any further “It is a mistake”.

        You say, “You cannot point to Iran as a threat with any example for over 300 years”. I disagree. My example is Germany, 1930’s, when a madman took control. At that time, no one could imagine the horror and devastation a fanatical, charismatic leader could cause.

        Really?

        Is 1914-1918 so quickly forgotten?

        Or 1812?

        Or the “30 Years War”? …etc. etc.

        Europe – if there is one compounding scenario over thousand years – it loves (loved?) war.

        President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is such a charismatic leader. Until he starts talking about peaceful resolutions, stops his countries’ promoting terrorism, I think history gives me every reason to suspect dire things from him and his followers.

        He is a politician, so fanciful rhetoric is a basic requirement of his ilk.

        However he has consistently in interviews, in front of the UN, and nearly every where I have noted his speeches, he has always led with a desire for peace.

        The problem, sir, (and I know USWep will hate me for this) is the USA. Iran has offered, time and time again, diplomatic relations. Iran is always rebuked by the USA.

        Who is trying and who is not?

        You are free to tell me I am mistaken, but its not likely I will be buying any real estate from you either.

        I have none to sell.

  14. A brief history lesson on Iran is necessary to this discussion, so I will be brief on history. There are those on this blog that believe that history is important as to future actions and, in this case, it is true. Iran, formally known as Persia or the Persian Empire was a vast empire. Greater Iran, which consists of the area from the Euphrates in the west to the Indus River and Jaxartes in the east and from the Caucasus, Caspian Sea, and Aral Sea in the north to the Persian Gulf and the Gulf of Oman in the south. (Source: the Encyclopedia Iranica uses the term Iranian Cultural Continent and refers to the regions that have significant Iranian cultural influence. It roughly corresponds to the territory surrounding the Iranian plateau, stretching from the Caucasus to the Indus River in modern day Pakistan, and conform to the historical understanding of the full territory of “Iran.”) This is extremely important as I will discuss later.
    The southwestern part of the Iranian plateau participated in the wider Ancient Near East with Elam, from the Early Bronze Age. The Persian Empire proper begins in the Iron Age, following the influx of Iranian peoples which gave rise to the Median, Achaemenid, the Parthian, the Sassanid dynasties.

    Why is this important to know, given the modern concepts of today? It is important because Iran does not “live” within what we term the modern concepts of today. They, the leadership, believe and live according to the “old ways” and have a stated desire to return to the days of the Persian Empire. Once a major empire of superpower proportions, Persia, as it had long been called, has been overrun frequently and has had its territory altered throughout the centuries. Invaded and occupied by Greeks, Arabs, Turks, Mongols, and others—and often caught up in the affairs of larger powers—Persia has always reasserted its national identity and has developed as a distinct political and cultural entity.
    Iran is home to one of the world’s oldest continuous major civilizations, with historical and urban settlements dating back to 4000 BC. The Medes unified Iran as a nation and empire in 625 BC. Achaemenid Empire (550–330 BC) was the first of the Iranian empires to rule in Middle east and central Asia. They were succeeded by the Seleucid Empire, Parthians and Sassanids which governed Iran for almost 1,000 years.
    The Islamic conquest of Persia (633–656) and the end of the Sassanid Empire was a turning point in Iranian history. Islamicization in Iran took place during 8th to 10th century and led to the eventual decline of the Zoroastrian religion in Persia. However, the achievements of the previous Persian civilizations were not lost, but were to a great extent absorbed by the new Islamic polity and civilization.
    After centuries of foreign occupation and short-lived native dynasties, Iran was once again reunified as an independent state in 1501 by the Safavid dynasty who established Shi’a Islam as the official religion of their empire, marking one of the most important turning points in the history of Islam. Iran had been a monarchy ruled by a shah, or emperor, almost without interruption from 1501 until the 1979 Iranian revolution, when Iran officially became an Islamic Republic on 1 April 1979.
    Thus, endeth the history lesson. (Several sources including Wikipedia and the Encyclopedia Iranica).
    Now, topic one of the history lesson that I consider pertinent is that Persia (Iran) was once considered a superpower of major proportions. So, let’s identify what a superpower really is. A superpower is a state with a leading position in the international system and the ability to influence events and its own interests and project power on a worldwide scale to protect those interests; it is traditionally considered to be one step higher than a great power. Alice Lyman Miller (Professor of National Security Affairs at the Naval Postgraduate School), defines a superpower as “a country that has the capacity to project dominating power and influence anywhere in the world, and sometimes, in more than one region of the globe at a time, and so may plausibly attain the status of global hegemony.” To be a superpower does not mean the country or nation with the biggest guns. Superpower status can also be achieved economically, religiously, and academically, to name a few. So, way back when, Iran or the Persian Empire exuded influence on the world stage both militarily and economically and academically. As everyone knows, it lost its status over the years as more advanced military Nations exerted influence under the guns and the Persian Empire was systematically dissected. This has NEVER been forgotten. NEVER…… and this is important.

    Topic Two of the history lesson begins with the Islamic Conquest ( key word…conquest ) of Persia in 633-656 which destroyed all other religions and influence in the Persian Empire at that time and became dominant until it was taken over in 1501 by Shi’ A Islam rule. Iran was a Monarchy until the over throw of the Shah in 1979. There is controversy as to whether it was an absolute monarchy or just a monarchy or even a theocracy. It does not matter….the monarchy/theocracy was replaced by the Republic of Iran in 1979. But the argument continues as to whether or not it is a true republic and still not an absolute monarchy/theocracy under the guise of republic. I happen to believe that it is an absolute monarchy/theocracy to this day and that the Parliament and President of Iran are not in control but are simply figure heads on a world stage for appearance. They are puppets controlled by the Islamic Absolute Monarchy. This is, of course, my opinion after having studied the region, the religion, the government, and lived among Iranians and the Islamic culture.
    Now, on to USW’s article:
    USW says: The cause was the fact that the Shah of Iran was very western supported and very western in his ideals.
    D13 Says: This is correct. But it is still religious based. The history shows that Iran was once a superpower in influence and they are still entrenched in the beliefs of old. This is not a bad thing if it is kept within their boundaries but they (the Monarchy/theocracy by my definition) does not want to lose their “heritage”.

    USW Says: Fundamentalist muslims see western society as a direct threat to the muslim religion. And that is an important thing to remember when discussing Islam, and is therefore a very pertinent fact in discussing Iran.
    D13 Says : You betcha.

    USW Says: So it is completely understandable why the Iranian government might be untrusting and resentful towards the government of the United States.

    D13 Responds: I agree but it is not just the United States. It is the U.S. now simply because we are the big kid on the block but make no mistake, it is ANY culture that threatens theirs. If the U.S. were to back out and capitulate to Iran, it (Iran) will simply target another culture.
    USW Says: Much of their equipment is offensive in nature, and they are willing to use it if there is a fight that they feel they can win.

    D13 Concurs: Actually, USW is being benevolent here. 83% of their equipment is offensive in nature. The new era of missile technology is not defensive as they like you to believe. It is offensive from the start no matter the nomenclature and propaganda put out by Iran. Nuclear weapons, while often referred to as a deterrent and, therefore, defensive in nature is pure bull dookey. There is NO defensive nuclear weapon anywhere in the world. Iran has to go Nuke to continue to project its brand of influence on the world stage to give it credibility. No one says that the Iranians are stupid.

    USW Says: And to claim that they don’t operate outside of their borders is ignoring the fact. They support, finance, and arm other factions in other countries that are essentially terrorist organizations masquerading as political entities.

    D13 agrees: Again, USW is being benevolent here. Iranian influence is being projected throughout the world and that is fact. They are not sending their standing Army out. They do not have to at this point. Iranian influence is as violent if not more violent than any other power on this earth. They are behind more violent factions that the CIA ever thought about being. We should know…. we taught them how to do it. They learn well.

    USW Says: They are not a backwards country. They are not the third world. Iran is a nation of wonderful people and that is why I will never support the idea of wiping that country out completely.

    D13: Concurs: I concur with reservation. My reservation is that while, for the most part, they are a wonderful people…. they are not willing to change their government. Some will say that they cannot change it and therefore, must support it, however, they managed to change it in 1979. The people of Iran are basically good people but they are easily led and I have not found them to openly, through the Mosques in the US, decry the fundamentalist approach to Islam. If the “peaceful” Iranians in this country are afraid to speak out….then where?

    USW Says: They are surrounded by nuclear powers and they see the benefit of having the bomb. Pakistan, India, Israel, the US, Russia, and China are all far more powerful on the world stage right now, and that is in part due to having nuclear capability. Iran wants that power and that respect.

    D13 responds: Yes. It is that simple.
    USW Says: The bottom line is that the world has taken a stand against Iran’s nuclear program. Sanctions are stifling for the country, but do not seem to stop the government from pursuing its agenda.

    D13 Responds: Yes. It is that simple. To lift the sanctions will not endear the “people” to us or to the world. It will simply hasten the process. But Iran will not stop and will take its people down with it sanctions or no sanctions.

    USW Says: It is nothing short of hypocritical for the most nuclear armed nation on earth, the only nation to actually use the nuclear option, to claim that anyone else does not have the sovereign right to do exactly as we have done, in the name of national defense. While I certainly see the threat, the liberty and freedom guy in me says I have no right to tell Iran what to do, until they use that nuclear program to attack another nation.

    D13 Responds: Yes. It is that simple….or is it? The US used the atomic weapon in the name of defense…..or is it like football…the best defense is a stronger offense. It does not matter. We demonstrated the ability and the desire to use the Atomic bomb. We did it with devastating effect. We will not be attacked as a nuclear power because we demonstrated the will to use it. No other country has done that. USW is correct in that we have no right to tell Iran they cannot have a Nuclear Weapon. But where Black Flag is incorrect, Iran has the intention, the desire, and the knowledge to produce a weapon and it will do so. It will do so with the full cooperation of Russia. Black Flag is also incorrect that Russia will not allow it….it will. To have an agreement that Russia will produce non weapon nuclear material and give us “sanction” that it will be non weapons grade is FOLLY…..better yet, it is bullshit.

    Iran will get its Nuke. It has always sought it and Iran is lying when it says it is for energy only. IT IS A LIE. No one will stop Iran. Not the joke of a United Nations…Not Israel…. Not the United States. Iran will then export its weapons technology for profit to the Western Hemisphere. There is no economic reason for it not to…not even the oil it cannot produce in mass any longer nor refinement of same. Iran will then have its dominance over the “old Persian Empire” once again. Iran wants to be the supreme messiah of the Islamic world and the Saudis, Syria, Egypt, and the rest will “kow tow” to it. They will not stop it and then the weapon of the future under the watchful eye of Iran will be oil. And, those that believe that the Monarchy’s in place in Egypt and Saudi Arabia and Syria will not allow it economically are pissing into the wind. It would not surprise me at all to see Pakistan fold to the Iranian’s once they become nuclear.

    As far as the United States is concerned, with this current administration, we have already exhibited our diplomatic cowardice to the world. It is tough to be laughed at but even tougher to be laughed at to our face and that is happening.

    Thus endeth the analogy of D13.

    • Iran had been a monarchy ruled by a shah, or emperor, almost without interruption from 1501 until the 1979 Iranian revolution, when Iran officially became an Islamic Republic on 1 April 1979.
      Thus, endeth the history lesson. (Several sources including Wikipedia and the Encyclopedia Iranica).

      Ah, revisionist history in action.

      “Let’s just skip over the inconvenient 1951-1953 democracy that the US and UK screwed up…”

      • No need to skip over it..point me in the direction to read it.

        • Oh…and the quote said…”almost”….Not revising it, BF…just reading it and using it.

          • You think the single word – “almost” – sufficiently explains what is probably the defining moment in USA/Iran modern international relations????

            Do you think I’m stupid?

            • Not at all, sir….neither am I. My, you are passionate today.

            • BTW,,,,where might I find a reference to the 1951-1953 incident you referred to, please. Is there a name for it..cannot seem to locate it. I googled US influence in Iran 1951 and came up with nothing.

              • Never mind, BF. I think I found something relevant to 1951-53. It is a paper written by Hakimeh Saghaye-Biria, BA University of Houston 2002 entitled…United States propaganda 1951-1953 referencing the 1953 coup of Prime Minister Mohammed Mosaddeq. Is this the one you are referring to?

              • Very interesting reading…pertains the coup in Iran to stop the Iranian Russian alliance and nationalizing and controlling the oil reserves in Iran. Not just a US Britain issue. A Cold War issue….back then.

              • D13:

                Heres a little something to go with what you found.

                I hope everyone here takes time to read this summary of modern history in Iran.

                http://www.mideastweb.org/iranhistory.htm

                That is the coup to which BF refers.

            • BF:

              Actually I think you are placing far to much importance on that one event.

              Oh it is a festering thorn, don’t get me wrong.

              But you are greatly underestimating all the forces at work if you think this is the only problem between the USA and Iran.

              • Excellent point JAC

              • It is a pivotal point.

                Your complaint is eqivilent to me saying back to you:

                “You are putting too much importance in 1776-1778 for the USA – it was only 3 years of the nations history”

                First, it wasn’t just 1953 it was the invasion during WW2 and the seizure of the oil field by British Petroleum.

                Mossedeq nationalized the oil fields.

                Eisenhower doctrine – you are with us or you are against us – created the ideology that indigenous self-determination of a nation was a threat to the United States where none may have existed. The USA, with support of UK, took back the oil fields – out of the hands of the Iranians and into the pockets of mercantilists in USA and Britain

                The overthrow of the democratically and popular president and the placement of a vicious dictatorship sorta kinda makes the locals mad.

              • BF:

                Actually my complaint is more like “you can’t use the Boston Tea Party as the only reason for the revolution”.

                My point which you so adeptly missed was that YOU were focusing on this one even as THE point and basis for most of the problem.

                Your rebuttal is supportive of my point, it was one event in a long history of events that are all influencing the play that is unfolding before us.

                Slow down my friend, you’ll get a more harmoinious outcome.

                By the way. Why do you stop your assessment of Iran’s willingness to invade at 300 or 400 years? If you go back farther you see they were every bit the dynasty building through invasion people as the rest of the world. They are in fact part of the legacy of the human propensity for imperialism.

              • JAC,

                I focus on it, because it is the focus of their complaint.

                USWep raised yesterday the “take over of the embassy” – but, as usual, failed to explain why the Iranians seized the embassy.

                They were searching for documentation of the involvement of CIA in the overthrow – and they found it – by patiently taping back the shredded documents.

                Remember, the Iranians killed no one and released everyone eventually.

                It is not necessary to examine Iran’s history for the last 1,000 years to have some understanding of the people today.

                The region has been poisoned by European colonialism – and like Africa, continues to recoil from it.

                It is time to stop the colonialism and allow the region to seek their own destiny.

              • Bottom Line says:

                BF – “Remember, the Iranians killed no one and released everyone eventually”

                BL – And years later took more hostages and killed them.

                I.E.
                Colenel William Higgins.

              • Sorry, BL – Lebanon is not Iran.

                Example denied.

              • Bottom Line says:

                Dig deeper BF. Hezbollah was backed by Iran.

              • Iran did not kill him.

                Some one in Lebanon killed him.

                Be careful with your examples – they will be used against you.

                If this example is what you wish to hold up to present contrary evidence to my statement – you will be overwhelmed by the consequences of further examples
                of mine.

                Example denied (for your own good!) 😉

              • Bottom Line says:

                Yes it was lebanese. Yes it was in Lebanon. Yes it was Hezbollah. But Iran had it’s hand in it too.

              • Damn, I think I agree with Flag on this. We overthrew their government, not a little thing to them. That said, I have not read any of their history books to see how they teach/think on that subject.
                I do know, by comparison, Mexico teaches Texas, New Mexico and much of California rightfully belongs to them, not the US.

              • Heh heh…come and take it back…

                🙂

              • Damn straight, will be by your side sir. But we all have a bias that is a result of our culture. How does the Civil War affect Americans? How can we know how Iranians feel of the US treating their country as a chess piece? Not to say we were right or wrong, I think it has an effect on how THEY view us.

              • Yessir…it does have an effect. Not a good one, either. But it does not change the dynamics of modern day issues. However, my experience dictates to me, that even if we were not there, no change will happen. The west is despised anyway.

              • The other thing here also. We are not the only ones treating it as a chess piece…we just happen to be in the game. If we folded our tent, the game for Iran continues.

              • D13

                I agree.

              • Yes, D13, the West is despised – for good reasons.

                Mercantilism always produces ill-will for most of the foreign people – with a few puppets that become incredibly wealthy.

                The original premise – free and fair trade with all, no entanglements with anyone – was incredibly wise.

                Politicians worked very hard to destroy such wisdom.

  15. HI ALL

    Just wanted to say hello, and that I hope everyone is having and will have a good day.

    Take Care

    Judy

  16. posting for comments

  17. amazed1

    I know Israel says all the Palestinians left of their own accord durning the war because they thought they could come back after Israel was destroyed.

    Does that make sense to you?

    They abandon their homes, their lives, their property – on their own accord?

    Do you believe the Jews in Germany, on their own accord, marched off to gas chambers?

    Do you believe the Chechens, on their own accord, marched into Siberia?

    I know that Israel does not attack without first being attacked.

    Then you do not know much about Israel.

    1973 War ring a bell?
    Attack on the USS Liberty?
    Bombing of Iraqi Power plant?
    Bombing of Syria this year?
    Bombing and invasion of Lebanon and Beirut?
    Actions of the Irgun and the Haganah?

    But I have about given up finding out the exact truth because of all the biases

    …on all sides.

    But the truth is:

    On one side, ….a people who don’t even have a nation, nor an effective police force, let alone an army, air force, tanks, navy, or cluster bombs – let alone nuclear weapons, are NOT backed by $3 billion of weapons of war from the USA, who suffer water, food and medicine shortages…whose people has a standard of living equal to Somalia

    …..face …..

    …on the other side, a nation supported by a super-power, the largest recipient of USA foreign aid – whose people have the standard of living equal to Spain and Italy, the largest army and heaviest financed war machine in the Middle East, with some of the most advanced armor, tanks, weapons, missiles, air force, nuclear weapons, and navy.

    Where do you think a bias exists, when most of Americans claim Israel’s existence is at threat from the Palestinians????

    • Most Americans do not claim Israel’s existence is at threat from the Palestinians. That is simply a false statement. I don’t think Palestine is a threat to Israel’s existence.

      You seem to always fall back to this argument that the Palestinians are this poor little group of people with no army and no support. While they are not a nation, they have no army, that does not equal that they are NO threat. They do have the support of other nations, Iran being chief among them. By your own history narratives in the past, many is the time a revolution within a country violently overthrew a powerful government with a massive army. The Iranian revolution above is a good example. Stop pretending the Palestinians are a powerless and impotent group of people. And further stop pretending that they just want to live in peace. You love to take those positions, but they simply are not true.

      I don’t mind you hating the US. I don’t mind you hating Israel. You are certainly within your rights to do so. And I recognize the examples in history that have led you there. But playing this silly game where you pretend that all the opponents of the US and Israel are simply peace loving folks who would never do anything wrong is weakening your argument to the point of rendering it moot.

      • USWeapon said

        Most Americans do not claim Israel’s existence is at threat from the Palestinians. That is simply a false statement. I don’t think Palestine is a threat to Israel’s existence.

        You do seem to believe it is at threat – even though Israel’s military, support and budget exceeds the combined quantities of every nation in the region.

        You seem to always fall back to this argument that the Palestinians are this poor little group of people with no army and no support.

        Because…. they are a people who have no army and very little support!

        So, yeah – fact is like that, USWep, it is commonly quite consistent over time.

        While they are not a nation, they have no army, that does not equal that they are NO threat.

        The threat is a gnat on an horse’s arse.

        They do have the support of other nations, Iran being chief among them.

        As I have already detailed – the support is by multiple magnitudes insignificant compared to the US support of Israel.

        By your own history narratives in the past, many is the time a revolution within a country violently overthrew a powerful government with a massive army. The Iranian revolution above is a good example.

        First, it was not nearly as violent as it appears you wish to present.

        It was a popular uprising – forcing the Shah into exile – by the use of strikes and protests –

        A week later on December 10 and 11, a “total of 6 to 9 million” anti-shah demonstrators marched throughout Iran. According to one historian, “even discounting for exaggeration, these figures may represent the largest protest event in history.” [106]

        It is almost unheard of for a revolution to involve as much as 1 percent of a country’s population. The French Revolution of 1789, the Russian Revolution of 1917, perhaps the Romanian Revolution of 1989 – these may have passed the 1 percent mark. Yet in Iran, more than 10% of the country marched in anti-shah demonstrations on December 10 and 11, 1978.[14]

        By late 1978 the shah was in search of a prime minister and offered the job to a series of liberal oppositionists. While “several months earlier they would have considered the appointment a dream come true,” they now “considered it futile”.[107] Finally, in the last days of 1978, Dr. Shapour Bakhtiar, a long time opposition leader, accepted the post and was promptly expelled from the oppositional movement.”l
        [edit] Victory of revolution and fall of monarchy
        [edit] Shah leaves

        By mid-December the shah’s position had deteriorated to the point where he “wanted only to be allowed to stay in Iran.” He was turned down by the opposition. In late December, “he agreed to leave the country temporarily; still he was turned down.” [108] On January 16, 1979 the Shah and the empress left Iran. Scenes of spontaneous joy followed and “within hours of almost every sign of the Pahlavi dynasty” was destroyed.[109]

        Bakhtiar dissolved SAVAK, freed political prisoners, ordered the army to allow mass demonstrations, promised free elections and invited Khomeinists and other revolutionaries into a government of “national unity”.[110] After stalling for a few days Bakhtiar allowed Ayatollah Khomeini to return to Iran, asking him to create a Vatican-like state in Qom and calling upon the opposition to help preserve the constitution.

        Stop pretending the Palestinians are a powerless and impotent group of people.

        Wake up, USWep.

        They are powerless and impotent – if they were not, the situation would be wholly different in Israel.

        You believe a people with no army, navy, air force, and tanks is somehow “powerful” against a nation who has the 5ht largest military force in the world.

        Who is acting the fool, USwep?

        And further stop pretending that they just want to live in peace. You love to take those positions, but they simply are not true.

        You cannot demand a people persecuted, bombed, burned, displaced, impoverished, with their homes demolished and themselves slaughtered their own land to be peaceful!

        I quote the Israeli defense minister, Ehud Barak, when a Haaretz journalist asked him then, as a candidate for prime minister, what he would do had he been born Palestinian and Barak replied frankly: “I would join a terror organization.”

        At least I can’t accuse Barak of hypocrisy.

        I don’t mind you hating the US. I don’t mind you hating Israel.

        Your emotionalism is unbecoming.

        I am disturbed by the rampant hypocrisy, and in its excuse, the continuation of persecution of a people and the provocation and promotion of making a very dangerous war upon a nation that is not,nor has ever been, a threat to the United States.

        • You do seem to believe it is at threat – even though Israel’s military, support and budget exceeds the combined quantities of every nation in the region.

          I believe that the Palestinians are a threat to Israeli citizens. To say they aren’t would be to ignore the little girl blown up by rockets shot from Gaza. I have never, ever said that Palestine is a threat to Israel’s existence. If you are going to continue to spread that falsehood, I suggest you find where I said it and prove it.

          You believe a people with no army, navy, air force, and tanks is somehow “powerful” against a nation who has the 5ht largest military force in the world.

          Who is acting the fool, USwep?

          You are. I would point backwards to your own statements that the western world is doomed because they attempt to fight the new kind of warrior with technology while the new warrior with no technology tears them apart. Tough when your own arguments come back to bite you.

          I would point to the fact that a vastly out-gunned insurgency in both Afghanistan and Iraq have battled the strongest army in the world for YEARS with no victory yet.

          You are principled. And you make good points when you eliminate your bias in your opinion. But when you allow that need to be “right” by proving America “wrong”, your arguments fall apart.

          Because…. they are a people who have no army and very little support!

          So, yeah – fact is like that, USWep, it is commonly quite consistent over time.

          But they are 4th generation warriors BF, by your own statements the new breed of winning soldier in a war that the world’s superpowers are not prepared to fight….

          The threat is a gnat on an horse’s arse.

          In the same way a mere 3,000 deaths on 9/11 were a gnat on a horse’s arse for the US. It is still a threat.

          Your emotionalism is unbecoming.

          Not sure where you got emotionalism from my saying I don’t mind if you hate the US or Israel. But you should know better. Emotion and politics don’t mix. I argue logic. And you, sir, seem to have allowed your passion for talking about how evil America and Israel are get in the way of your logical thought processes.

    • BF….I was only talking about what goes on between Israel and Palestine……and yes it does make since that someone would abandon their homes. If some one came to me and said hey, “We are fixing to bomb this area…when we get done you can come back” my reaction would be “feet don’t fail me now”.

      “Do you believe the Jews in Germany, on their own accord, marched off to gas chambers?

      Do you believe the Chechens, on their own accord, marched into Siberia?”

      Well no BF I don’t…..and in the same token I don’t think anyone came and said hey “we are going to start a war here, clear the grounds you can come back when we win”.

      The thing is I do not know the truth….I was not there and when I try to figure it out I get conflicting information. It is like reading about our civil war…depending on whose books you want to read you get differing opinons. I figure there is a little truth in all.

      Me personally….I do not believe that palestine is a threat…but I do believe their are fractions that are, I also believe these fraction are supported by some nations for their own reasons and have little to do with palestine.
      I also know that if all these countries are so worried and upset about the palestaines why have none of these countries taken them in? People live in squalor, others complain about the conditions, but do nothing to help the people they feel sorry for. All this too makes no sense.
      Thus the question I preposed to your HD…just exactly what is the truth?

      • Why should an other nation be burdened by a displaced people?

        The Palestinians are not interested in moving to Texas, Canada, Belgium, Siberia, Egypt, Jordon nor Iran – no more than you would be happy to be forcefully displaced and relocated to Somalia.

        They have a right to their land and their homes, just like you.

  18. v. Holland says:

    It seems to me that the whole middle east has changed hands so many times that I don’t see how anyone has a claim to anything. When the Jewish state was formed Arabs and Jews lived on that land, originally it was to include a lot larger area for a Jewish State, but instead of giving all the land to Israel they decided to give a portion of the land, which is now Jordan to the Palestinians, so it seems to me that a Palestinian State was formed years ago. So I really don’t understand this outraged call for a Palestinian State.

    http://www.mapsofwar.com/ind/imperial-history.html

    • V.H.:

      Great find. I had never seen that put on moving slides before.

      As I said some time ago. The peoples of that region are tribal in origin and they have very long memories.

      Events of 4000 yrs ago can break out in family, tribal feuds to this day.

      • That was great, gives you a much better perspective.

      • V.,

        I had previously give D13 documentation that “Palestine” was described 5000BC.

        The word “Palestine” is not a British Imperial invention – it is the historical name of that area for the last 6000 years.

        • v. Holland says:

          So what-if I go back 5000 years per this map-the land Israel is on belonged to Egypt, which has a peace treaty with Israel and acknowledges their right to exist. This unending war has nothing to do with a small piece of land or even right or wrong-look at that tiny little part of the world that was given to Israel so they would have a home-then look at the huge areas of lands that are left and tell me that this has anything to do with the Palestinians. It is an ongoing war of religious hate for the Jews. There is no principal anyone is standing on it is just hate, hate, hate-you can blame the US for all the problems in the Middle East if you so choose but IMHO it is caused by an unending, extreme, stupid, hate-and any suffering that the Palestinian people are suffering can be layed at the feet of Arabs .

          • V.

            So you would agree, if I came and stolen YOUR house and killed YOUR children and told you that you could go to Alaska to live….

            … you would go “Yeah, no prob!”

            Hypocrisy, sir! A charge I lay at your feet!

            • v. Holland says:

              That part of the world had been conquered and divided for 1000’s of years but suddenly giving a fraction of the land to the Jews is a major offense. Doing that is somehow worse than the control that all these other empires that conquered them had over them. They were basically given all their lands back but They will come together and scream that THEIR land is being occupied when the Jews have been in that country for 1000’s of years too. I don’t think so-I think it shows that their war with Israel isn’t based on anything but a hate for Jews. Talk about killing my children and telling me I should move being bad-lets try looking at what has happened-telling people not to accept the sad but realistic cost of losing a war, telling them to stay in poverty for years, telling them to sacrifice their children-just so the other Arab nations can use them to try and destroy Israel.

              • So easy to say, V. Holland – until you face it yourself.

                Here is your hypocrisy.

                This is what Germany did to the Jews – yet you rage against THAT.

                But if it is Jew against Palestinian – your response is “suck it up”!

                The post-WW2 Nuremberg presented a new doctrine on the world – genocide and ethic cleansing was was not a right of any nation.

                Yet, due to the US sitting on the Security Council and vetoing resolution after resolution – Israel actively engages in such ethic cleansing, while protected by the USA.

                Hence, the Arab world cries “Hypocrite!”

                The world knows the day the US no longer supports Israel, Israel will beg for a seat at a peace table and negotiate in good faith with Palestinians. But until then – it will not.

              • v. Holland says:

                The difference in my mind is that the Arab nations and the Palestinians are doing it to themselves. If they wanted peace -they would stop fighting a war that they have waged and lost for over 60 years. They would recognize Israel and start building a new life for themselves, instead of allowing their pride and hate to destroy them. As far as Germany-when was it that the Jews attacked them-I don’t remember the Jewish people going around with bombs strapped to them or setting off rockets that killed their people. I find it rather strange that you would compare the two.

              • v. Holland says:

                The fact that Israel has done bad things too-doesn’t change the fact that the Arab Nations are against Israel just because they are Jewish, which is what has caused all the bad things that have happened throughout this conflict.

            • icomeanon says:

              Iran, like the United States, has a right to protect itself against other countries with nuclear weapons. Just because we (as a nation) feel a little sketchy about other countries with nuclear arms doesn’t mean we have the right to police them. I understand the gravity of nuclear weapons, but I also understand the desire for control. Iran doesn’t want to be told what to do by a country (or the UN) what they can and can’t do. They’re not 5 years old.

              After reading “The Stars My Destination” by Alfred Bester, I’ve come to realize that nuclear weapons are not the end-all. They’re simply a hiccup in our society- a way to keep the populace away from real progression. How can we grow as humans when we’re all so caught up in a battle that shouldn’t be an issue to begin with?

  19. D13
    I firmly believe that Russia will allow and arm Iran, hence, an economic alliance one way and a protectionism treaty another way. That is why I believe that Russia is a player in this for Russia and no one else.

    Yes, those dastardly Russians are in it for themselves, but the good ol’USA is altruistic and acts for the good of the world!

    🙄

    I see the world as a huge chess board. Iran’s focus will be the Middle East.

    Gee, I bet it is because that is where their country is situated! Amazing! They aren’t interested in Mexico! Amazing!

    I see Iran playing chess with three queens on the board and Pakistan, Egypt, Syria, and the Saudis having only pawns and rooks. I see Pakistan crumbling to a nuke armed Iran.

    Provide some reasoning for your contention.

    Here’s mine, in contradiction to yours:

    1) Pakistan has a border with TWO nuclear armed nations – China and India, has not “crumbled”

    2) Pakistan has NO border with Iran – a nation separated by a country called “Afghanistan”.

    Traditionally, the Pushtan of Afghanistan have more cultural affinity with Pakistan than Iran. It is incredibly unlikely they would switch sides and join a foreign people like Persians against their own kin.

    I see, as I spoke, of an unholy alliance possibility with Israel to keep Iran in check.

    That existed with Turkey.

    However, recent Israeli actions have created a serious rift with them as well. Israel is poisoning all its relationships – dangerously so – and isolating itself as a vile nation.

    I see the Russians keeping Iran in check as well, economically….Russia needs Iran and Iran will need Russia.

    Hmmm… Russia needs no one.

    Russia’s primary interest is to prevent American troops facing Russia borders.

    Second, it’s interest is to join Europe – but, traditionally, Europe has isolated Russia due to its potential of political and economic dominance. This dance continues today.

    India is no threat whatsoever to anyone.

    You underestimate India’s capability.

    They are nuclear armed, space faring, nuclear power ships and subs, with an advanced and indigenous military industrial complex.

    It is expanding its influence in the Indian Ocean – though presently in a lose alliance with USA – it has the potential to displace US forces in the near future.

    Russia’s eyes will be on Western Europe and economic viability and will get no interference from the West(England, Canada and the US).

    Russian focus is unchanged since the 17th century – an ice free port on the Atlantic or Med.

    • No sir….do not under estimate India’s capability at all. Very powerful….but not a player.

    • 1) Pakistan has a border with TWO nuclear armed nations – China and India, has not “crumbled”

      D13 says: Did not say that India has crumbled. It will with a nuclear armed Iran. But, according to you, we will never see this because Iran’s nuclear ambition is energy only. Pakistan and India are at odds as they have been for decades but it is only that. Border disputes and small issues. NO problem here but I will disagree with you on the alliance. It will be with a nuclear armed Iran. Again, time will tell. If Iran does not nuclear arm, then it is a moot point.

      2) Pakistan has NO border with Iran – a nation separated by a country called “Afghanistan”.

      Traditionally, the Pushtan of Afghanistan have more cultural affinity with Pakistan than Iran. It is incredibly unlikely they would switch sides and join a foreign people like Persians against their own kin.

      D13 says: Yes sir, exactly my point, but we will be in disagreement here. Afghanistan will not follow Pakistans lead…it will be the opposite.

      • D13

        1) Pakistan has a border with TWO nuclear armed nations – China and India, has not “crumbled”

        D13 says: Did not say that India has crumbled. It will with a nuclear armed Iran.

        You misunderstood my statement – I was referring to Pakistan ‘not crumbling’ whilst sharing a border with nuclear China and nuclear India.

        Other than, once again, asserting your opinion out of thin air – how do explain your reason?

        I raised the FACT that Pakistan SHARES A BORDER with not one, but TWO nuclear nations – and has not “crumbled”.

        For argument sake, if Iran had nukes – how does a nation that is PHYSICALLY separated by more than 1000 miles, suddenly cause Pakistan to crumble???

        If merely being within another nuclear armed nation with 1,000 miles – simply pick Russia -….whoops – Pakistan hasn’t crumbled yet, either with – now – THREE nuclear neighbors!

        Again, time will tell. If Iran does not nuclear arm, then it is a moot point.

        I think it a moot point with or without Iran – if three nuclear tipped neighbors couldn’t crumble Pakistan, a fourth is wholly irrelevant.

        D13 says: Yes sir, exactly my point, but we will be in disagreement here. Afghanistan will not follow Pakistans lead…it will be the opposite.

        Does it matter?

        The Pushtan – the largest tribe in the world – recognizes no border between Afghanistan and Pakistan and are the defacto force in the border regions there.

    • Sorry…left out the reasoning for my contention of my so called “unholy alliance”. It is no secret that Egypt, the Crown Prince, and Syria, as well as Jordan are very fearful of Iran. Even though the US calls the Saudi’s “allies”, you and I both know that this is total BS. The US has no real allies, except Jordan and to a smaller extent, Egypt. And, even with Obama’s lame attempt, it is not going to change anything. The best thing for the US to do is just layoff and say nothing. Obama is hurting us with a weakened stance/apologies and, you and both know in the culture, a sign of weakness is a pariah. However, because of this fear, I am foretelling that Syria and Egypt will allow air space and staging grounds if Iran goes nuclear and turns any eye towards them. It will be tacit and strictly covert but it will be there. Iran has ambitions on that part of the world and so do the Mullahs and clerics.

      I know you will disagree but that is ok…always takes two horses to have a race….only time will prove one of us right….or both wrong…..LOL.

      • Obama is hurting us with a weakened stance

        Let’s be perfectly clear.

        A nation which has 5,500 deliverable nuclear weapons on the command of one man (plus or minus a series of fail-safes), an expenditure in military greater than the rest of the world combined – is never regarded as weak by any one in the world.

        The world actually sees Obama as somewhat more sane than Bush – sadly, many believe that is a sign of weakness – as if insanity is a sign of strength.

  20. Don’t know if this was already posted or not, and if it was, I apologize for the second showing.

    Judy

    Iran to Respond to U.N. Nuclear Proposal Next Week

    Friday, October 23, 2009

    Oct. 21: Iran’s ambassador to the International Atomic Energy Agency Ali Asghar Soltanieh speaks to media after talks on Iran’s nuclear program.

    TEHRAN, Iran — Iran’s envoy to U.N. nuclear watchdog says his country will respond next week to a U.N.-drafted plan to ship much of its uranium to Russia for further enrichment.

    Ali Asghar Soltanieh, Iran’s permanent envoy to the International Atomic Energy Agency, told Iran’s state Press TV on Friday that Iran is still studying the proposed deal.

    The plan was drafted earlier this week in talks with the U.S., Russia and France in Vienna, Austria.

    World powers saw it as a way to curb Iran’s efforts to make nuclear arms.

    Soltanieh’s comments come hours after Iran’s state TV quoted an unnamed source close to the Iranian nuclear negotiating team as saying Iran wants to buy nuclear fuel it needs for a research reactor, rather than accept the U.N. proposed plan.

  21. From what I have read so far, and I admit to not having read everything here, it seems to me that the issue is wether or not we – the U.S. – should allow the radical Islamic Theocracy of Iran to have nuclear weapons or not and what gives us the right to make that decision.

    Here are my thoughts on this; We developed the nuclear warhead with the express intention of using it on Nazi Germany and Imperial Japan. Germany was defeated before the bomb was completed so we used it on Japan. Twice. That action alone made us the “500 pound gorilla on the block”!

    It also gave us a very rude awakening. We discovered that with great weaponology comes great responsibility. Since we, the 500lb Gorilla on the block, had the knowledge of what it was we created we knew that we must never let anyone else obtain that technology. And it was like that until the Soviets started exploding their nuclear weapons without our permission. It was at that point that we became the 500lb wuss-monkey in the eyes of the world since we did not immediately nuke the Soviets. There are people who believe that if we had nuked the Soviets then we wouldn’t be in the mess that we are now in – but that is just their opinion and not the consensus of all mankind.

    Now we are faced with a country that has someone in charge that most folks in the western world doubt his sanity who wants to have nuclear power “for peaceful purposes” . . . Some, and I am one of them, believe that his “Peaceful purpose” would be to nuke Israel off the map. No one can allow that, least of all the rest of us who do have nuclear weapons. It is, in my not-so-humble opinion, the humane duty of the rest of the civilized world to do whatever it takes to prevent “Ach-Med-The-Nut-Job” from obtaining nuclear weapons. Period.

    The United States, the country that let the genie out of the bottle in the first place, has a moral obligation to the rest of the non-nuclear world to lead that effort.

    I know that USW has had a lot of experience in the middle east. I do not doubt his knowledge of the people or the area. I must point out that when it comes to those who wish to manipulate the rest of the world, those of us who have fought those kinds of people in the past do know that no matter what they claim to be – religious, demigods or just plain dictators – are all the same. They will do whatever it takes to reach their intended goal – Hitler and Mussolini wasted their own countries for just that reason, Stalin murdered millions of his own and that included some of his most loyal supporters, and Mao did likewise. Human history is full of these madmen.

    Just because these current idiots claim to be of a “peaceful” religion does not make them any different – they are all poured from the same mold.

    Do not misunderstand me when I say that to negotiate with these folks is totally useless and a waste of time. They will only use that time to improve their weapons and to improve their plot to achieve their ultimate goal.

    They only want to rule the entire world. And if they cannot, then they have no qualms about destroying the entire human race and the planet we live on instead.

    The only solution is to kill them.

    If you are not willing to do that, then you will be killed by them.

    • I must ask this, do you only drink distilled/rain water and pure grain alcohol in a belief that it will replenish your precious bodily fluids?

      • Bob:

        don’t be so quick with the sword. You see, GA has in fact articulately presented the only viable OTHER alternative.

        That is what everyone is failing to grasp. These are not areas of massive gray. It is black and white.

        We either clean house or we come home.

        • What Ive just read is one of the most insanely idiotic things I have ever read. At no point in G.A.’s rambling, incoherent response was he even close to anything that could be considered a rational thought. Everyone on this forum is now dumber for having read it. I award him no points, and may God have mercy on his soul.

          • Bob:

            That is where you are wrong. G.A. actually presented a coherant argument.

            He laid out his premise and his definitions. He assumes that the leaders over there are evil and have nothing but evil intentions.

            He laid out his reason why the USA has greater responsibility than anyone else to prevent nuclear expansion, weapons.

            He laid out the only logical conclusion given his assumptions and explanation. He provided past bad characters in history as a reference.

            His argument may be WRONG but it is not idiotic. He has provided much more in the way of historic and current evidence to support his claim than many have for other positions.

            While I often feel G.A. posts ramble some and are based mostly on emotion this is not one of those times.

            Do not dismiss all arguments as idiotic just because they offend your sensibilities.

            Provide an alternative proof or find the holes in his argument, if you really want to carry the day.

          • I concur with JAC.

            A definition of the most dangerous man in the world.

            “An insane man with an irrational premise argued with perfect logic.”

          • Geez you guys arent up to speed on your Billy Madison quotes are you. I sincerely hope that GA is joking in his post otherwise I fear for his sanity.

      • Its interesting that that racist Glenn Beck talks about how those on the left will attack the character of people they disagree with, instead of responding to the issues. I don’t know where he gets such ideals. Must be his racist, global warming denial(equal to holocaust denier)hate mongering ideology. But, freedom of speech, we across the pond have to put up with a lot.

        Thank you for re-affirming just what we all love about those loving liberals in the world.

      • Bob, I don’t know you and you don’t know me.

        If you believe that we can negotiate with the radical Islamic Theocracy of Iran, then you are sadly mistaken as the leaders of Iran will use you and your ilk for target practice. You and your good intentions mean absolutely nothing to them.

        Understand this – the average Iranian citizen, just like the average pre-WW2 German, and the average post-war Russian, is a decent hardworking peaceful individual who only wants to provide for his family. Unfortunately, just like those other countries that I just mentioned, the leadership of Iran is a little insane in that they want nuclear weapons to wipe Israel off the face of the Earth.

        Just as the Communists in Viet Nam hid behind the Buddhist religion, those in the middle east are using the Islamic religion for their own warped purposes.

        We in the United States invented the nuclear warhead, and to date we here in the United States have been the ONLY ones to use them in anger. It is our responsibility – since we here in the United States let the Genie out of the bottle – to see to it that they are NEVER again used in anger, and that means that if we have to use them again just to prevent someone else from using them in a wrong way, then we must.

        Just like the American policeman on the street when faced with the situation of having to take one life in order to save another, This country is soon going to be faced with having to use a nuclear weapon to prevent someone else from using a nuclear weapon in the wrong way.

        If you cannot understand that, then run – do not walk – to your nearest psychiatric hospital.

        • Read the discussions in this thread and please detail why it would be in Irans best interest to nuke Israel. Also discuss the consequences of that action. You will find your answer there.

          • Bob, you are trying to put a logical twist on someone who has no logic. The Islamic Theocracy in Iran does not need a case for “best interest” . . . All they want to do is wipe Israel off the face of the Earth. They have even said so in a speech to the UN. It is not my logic, but theirs that is the insane logic.

            But you just go ahead and kiss up to them, if that is what you believe will save you.

        • G.A.

          You know old buddy, I was standing by your argument (not necessarily agreeing but at least standing by your effort, until you popped this in there;

          “This country is soon going to be faced with having to use a nuclear weapon to prevent someone else from using a nuclear weapon in the wrong way.”

          You really need to think hard on that one for awhile.

          Perhaps go outside and enjoy the stars and coyotes howling.

          If we are responsible for the genie, which we feel is so evil we must prevents its use. Then why in God’s name would we use it to prevent it being used?

          If we don’t have the courage to stop its use by conventional means wouldn’t using the same weapon be the ultimate in hypocrisy and cowardice?

          Maybe not, but sure looks that way to me. Go ahead and explain. I am listening carefully to understand without passing judgment to quickly.

          JAC

          • JAC,

            I know that most everyone on this blog disagrees with me, and I am okay with that.

            When I first went through police training it was almost pounded into my head that if you carry a gun, someday you will have to use it to save a life by taking a life and if you are not willing to do that then get up and leave. That lesson was driven into us each and every day until we graduated.

            This country is in that same position with the nutcases in the middle east. If we just sit back and do nothing and let Iran nuke Israel out of existence, then we must know that we will be next in line to be nuked.

            Neither Russia, China, Pakistan nor India have the power to stop them because they just don’t care. You know that as well as I do. Russia will back Iran politically because they need Iran’s oil money. China has her sights set on Russia and the U.S. and Pakistan is mostly Islamic and just don’t care and India is just looking out for India. France and England do not have the power to stop them as is the case for the rest of Europe. Guess whose left.

            With Obama decimating our military we will have no choice but to use a sledgehammer instead of tackhammer if we want the rest of the world to sit up and take notice. China knows that we still have enough nukes and delivery systems to wipe out every one of their military installations in minutes as does Russia.

            Yes, I know that this is an insane idea. But we have allowed our politicians to screw us up so bad that we will not have a choice in the matter, and that is the part that achmed-the-nut-job is counting on. That we will be so indecisive that he will be able to become the world power that he wants to be and he will use Islam to keep the rest of the world at bay.

            Don’t get me wrong here. I do not like this idea any more than anyone else, but that is the future as I am beginning to see it.

            The only scenario that I can see that will prevent it from happening is if China, Russia, France, England, India and Pakistan form a solid coalition outside the UN to halt the proliferation of ALL nuclear weapons and then destroy any nation that tries to secretly make a nuclear weapon. You and I both know how realistic that is . . .

            • That should read “The only scenario that I can see that will prevent it from happening is if China, Russia, France, England, India and Pakistan form a solid coalition outside the UN with the U.S. to halt the proliferation of ALL nuclear weapons and then destroy any nation that tries to secretly make a nuclear weapon.”

              It’s late at night and my fingers are tired . . .

            • G.A.

              I just wanted to make sure you know that everyone doesn’t disagree with you. We all have our own thoughts, and I value yours as much as anyone, my friend. You have a wealth of experience, you served your country, and you think out your replies. I can ask no more of any man. It is never an easy road when you stand up for what you believe in, and I respect that you always do exactly that.

              I hope tonight finds you well my friend.

              USW

            • G.A. Rowe,

              I just want to let you know I agree with you in most cases. We’re in the minority, but not alone.

            • Average White Guy says:

              G.A. Rowe.

              “When I first went through police training it was almost pounded into my head that if you carry a gun, someday you will have to use it to save a life by taking a life and if you are not willing to do that then get up and leave.”

              You ignore the possibility of misusing the responsibility you are given. Taking a life without saving one. Then what happens to your credibility?

              http://www.policebrutality.info/2009/01/police-abusing-and-shooting-ill-kid.html
              http://www.amazon.com/Fuck-Tha-Police-Explicit/dp/B000TE1G8M

              Why is the U.S responsible? That’s like giving a convicted rapist charge to prevent sex crimes.
              Look how we made Japan dissolve their military in consequence to WWII? By that same logic we should DISARM ENTIRELY rather than use our infamous “the best defense is the best offense” approach.

              This country is in that same position with the nutcases in the middle east. If we just sit back and do nothing and let Iran nuke Israel out of existence, then we must know that we will be next in line to be nuked.

              Ignoring the multiple issues behind the logic bringing us finally to nuking the United States, ever heard of Mutual Assured Destruction?. Any nuclear move by Iran towards Israel and you’ll be picking up pieces of Iran landing around your mailbox. Israel already has plenty of nuclear weapons capable of leveling all of Iran.

              http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Israel_and_weapons_of_mass_destruction

              The only scenario that I can see that will prevent it from happening is if China, Russia, France, England, India and Pakistan form a solid coalition outside the UN to halt the proliferation of ALL nuclear weapons and then destroy any nation that tries to secretly make a nuclear weapon. You and I both know how realistic that is . . .

              If a treaty to halt nuclear proliferation doesn’t work inside the UN then why would it work anywhere else? How would you prefer to destroy said nation making nukes? With more nukes?

  22. Hi

    This totally off topic, and I do apologize, but thought this was interesting.

    10 Reasons for Moral Outrage

    Moral outrage is the intersection of morality and deep seated convictions. As Americans our decision to speak out or remain silent, act with conviction or step back, will create the world our children will inherit.

    Were it not for moral outrage America would be under British rule and the Emancipation Proclamation would never have been penned. Moral outrage, by its very definition, is the intersection of morality and deep seated convictions. The following are 10 reasons for moral outrage:

    1. Our forefathers acknowledged our creator God in the Declaration of Independence, but we are forbidden to acknowledge him in our public schools.
    2.Our entertainment industry glamorizes sexuality yet is held unaccountable despite the rising rate of out-of-wedlock teenage pregnancies.
    3. Moral relativism continues to reign in our public schools even though a nation reaps the results of such relativism with unprecedented greed on Wall Street.
    4. 39.8 million people live below the poverty line in America — over 14.1 million of them are children — yet close to 100 billion pounds of food is wasted each year.
    5. There have been over 50 million abortions since Roe vs. Wade became the law of the land with the vast majority being for no other reason than simple birth control.
    6. Darwinism is taught as fact while Creationism is excluded from the American classroom.
    7. More Christians were killed for their faith in the 20th century than in the entire history of Christianity.
    8. A cross erected in 1934, at a WWI memorial site in the Mojave Desert, is currently at the center of a debate over whether or not its presence violates the Constitution.
    9. The Ten Commandments have been taken from our court houses.
    10. The community of faith is, in large measure, quiet and complacent.

    It has been said that all that is needed for evil to prevail is for good men to do nothing. Ultimately we will be judged not by our titles or bank accounts but by something far more sacred. Future generations hang in the balance. Whether we speak out or remain silent, act or step back will create the inheritance we bequeath.

    • If these petty items are what most folks in this country think deserve moral outrage we are in much deeper trouble than even I thought possible.

      • HEY JAC

        I just happen to see that, and thought I’d put it up.

        How ya doing by the way?

        Judy

        • Been a good day Judy.

          Although I spent it here instead of doing chores. But seemed an important discussion.

          How about you?

          Heading to Carson City for Nevada Day Parade next week?

          • Things are okay, as of next Friday , I won’t be working here at the lab anymore. John sold it to his cousin who does work here, but runs his own business out of here, wants to have all new people, so We’re screwed. Out side of that , just peachy.

            No, we’re not going to the parade in Carson, my mom couldn’t handle it, too many people for her, so we’re just staying home. We have never been to it, and we’ve bee up here for 19 years. Pretty sad, isn’t it.

            Glad you’re doing well.

            Judy

    • Average White Guy says:

      Moral outrage is the intersection of morality and deep seated convictions.

      Morality is already deep seated conviction.

      Were it not for moral outrage America would be under British rule and the Emancipation Proclamation would never have been penned.

      I rarely see issues of tax being seen as offensive to ones morals. No matter if I were atheist or christian, an unfair tax would affect me the same.

      2.Our entertainment industry glamorizes sexuality yet is held unaccountable despite the rising rate of out-of-wedlock teenage pregnancies.

      Passing responsibility does nothing to address the situation. Mainstream media follows the whims of it’s consumer base, not the other way around. Does this account for the majority of those out-of-wedlock pregnancies occurring in historically conservative and religious states? Or that the divorce rate is “significantly higher” for Christians than Atheists or Agnostics?
      http://www.religioustolerance.org/chr_dira.htm

      3. Moral relativism continues to reign in our public schools even though a nation reaps the results of such relativism with unprecedented greed on Wall Street.

      “Moral relativists hold that no universal standard exists by which to assess an ethical proposition’s truth.” What’s wrong with moral relativists? Do you think that only the Ten Commandments offers guidance for a moral lifestyle?
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Om_mani_padme_hum

      6. Darwinism is taught as fact while Creationism is excluded from the American classroom.

      Darwinism is taught as a scientifically relevant issue in “Science” while Creationism is taught within the parameters of a non-scientifically valid issue in religion and “Social Studies.”

      http://video.yahoo.com/watch/1690311/5671904(Caution: Language)
      http://www.venganza.org/about/open-letter/

      9. The Ten Commandments have been taken from our court houses.

      Neither will you see verses from the Koran or Karandavyuha Sutra.

  23. Despite the general rule that it’s a bad idea to give out possibly identifying information online, I feel I should share something with y’all.

    I can’t leave my office today because the President is in the building next door and the Secret Service, combined with picketers (generally pro-Obama), have made it impossible to drive. If I heard right, he’s up here for a campaign stop for Dodd.

    Woooooooo!

    Anybody want me to get them an autograph?

    • Matt:

      Better yet, give him yours and tell him you thought he might like it now because he won’t see it on the next Presidential ballot.

      You better hope they leave soon or you’ll be stuck there all night.

    • Hey Mathius

      My son had that problem last week when Reid and Biden were in town speaking at his university, the cops wouldn’t even let my son walk across the street, and he lives right across from the university.

      I wouldn’t want their autographs even if you paid me to have it.

      • That was one very annoying drive home..

        Have a good weekend. Good night, and good luck 🙂

    • Bottom Line says:

      How about a 5 qt. blood sample. lol

    • Not worth the paper or the ink!

  24. USWep

    I did not, at any point, claim that the US or Israel was not violent, criminal, or radical, especially in terms of Iran.

    USWep, keep up.

    I did not say, at all, that you made any mention at all! You made NO MENTION – but took every opportunity to paint an emotional picture for Iran.

    As I repeat – you offered fallacy of emotionalism in an attempt to demonstrate extremism, using examples that pale in comparison to USA or Israeli actions – which you would not claim to be extremists!

    You used polylogism – one set of ‘logic’ on a people over here – but a wholly different set of ‘logic’ on the people over there.

    I discussed Iran, nothing more and nothing less.

    I did not dispute this at all.

    However, I dispute the use of emotionalism in an effort to paint extremism on a nation and a people by using examples that are minor compared to similar examples perpetrated by this country on its own people and upon other nations.

    If you point to Iran call label them “extremists” – the rest of the fingers of your fist are pointing back at you with great multiplication with the same label.

    By implication, you are using extremism as an argument of threat.

    Yet, you refuse to use the same argument on yourself, as being the threat to them in the first place.

    . The question is whether Iran is a threat.

    And you provided very little actual evidence.

    Other than the plea to emotionalism, all I can find is where you state your evaluation of the military capability – and in your own words, I quote:

    They have a large, although aging and broken, military. They have Soviet era equipment.

    Your statement suggests they offer little military threat to the USA defense capability.

    What else did you offer to demonstrate that it is a threat?

    -Nothing- but mere fallacy of “Argument To The Future” – that’s it!

    The whole post was to paint Iran as extremist and then use that painting to provide a backbone to you Argument to the Future.

    _WHOLLY EMPTY_ argument.

    I did not put forth that [supporting terrorism] there was a reason to act.

    I retract my one sentence.

    You raised the point and left it hang, I would surmise in an attempt for your readers to make their own analysis.

    I jumped the gun and should have waited until D13 made this point instead of you, I guess.

    Further, I am not interested in who is the weaker or stronger party here.
    That wasn’t the argument.

    It is certainly part of the argument.

    If you are attempting to provoke me to act – you must hold confidence that you will prevail if I do act against – or else you would not be provocative against me. Ergo, you must believe you are stronger then me.

    By establishing the weaker and stronger parties in a run-up to a conflict where motives and agendas are hidden, this is one method to discern who may be the aggressor in the conflict.

    Weak very rarely attack the Strong without being goaded or provoked.

    No one believed Poland attacked Germany, partly because of this argument.

    Iran is far less powerful vs. USA or Israel. It is even less than powerful vs USA AND Israel.

    So when asking if they are a threat – the question becomes:

    Who is a threat to who?

    That wasn’t the point of the article. The point was, I shall say again, is IRAN a threat?

    Any one, pushed to a corner, will fight back.

    The Taliban –even in the face of certain defeat- resisted, because without any resistance, what’s the point of sovereignty?

    If Israel and/or USA attacks Iran, Iran is a very serious and dangerous threat to the USA.

    If so, what, if anything, should we be doing?

    Doing our damnedest to yank back Israeli’s choke chain and train our ‘pet’ to be better behaved in the region.

    In using the misdirection of attacking the US and Israel in your arguments, you are failing to engage on those questions.
    /

    I am not the one that failed – it was your opening post – not mine.

    I presented evidence above of Iran’s actions outside of its own country in support of terror, in support of groups that threaten our allies.

    And, as I posted, it is insignificant compared the military budget of the USA and its regional ally, Israel – by an order of magnitude.

    You seem willing to ignore that and say, “well they haven’t directly sent their army out and attacked anyone, so they are no threat and no problem.”

    I pointed out with facts and figures – which you ignored – that financially, militarily, and geographically – are no threat to the United States of America.

    • BF:

      “I pointed out with facts and figures – which you ignored – that financially, militarily, and geographically – are no threat to the United States of America.”

      Unitl of course they have nuclear weapons and a method of delivering them.

      Suitcases and young fools.

      • Good JAC,

        I charge you with Fallacy! “Argument To The Future”

        • BF:

          We are discussing geopolitics in the region of the mideast. It involves governments, evil by your definition, and religeous idealouges, also evil by your claim. We are dealing with a situation where various individuals and nations are vying for power and influence over others, regardless of their reasons.

          All of this and you wish me to accept your claim that one of the major players may not pose a threat in the near future because they haven’t invaded another country in the last 400 years. Despite the fact that they have good reason to hate if not mistrust us, and you ask me to assume that if they should acquire nuclear weapon capability that this will somehow not affect the balance of power in the area? I charge you with Fallacy of the Ostrich.

          Dealing with possible scenarios and then trying to assess the probability of occurance as well as impacts is called “planning” and “risk assessment”. It deals with eventualities and very few absolutes. As there is no firm proposition of truth there can be no fallacy.

          You say Iran poses no threat. Maybe not based on your information. Maybe based on others information. At least three of you who posted today have been IN the country. Two of you think they do pose a threat, although not a real big one at the moment.

          Now add the posession of nuclear weapons to the mix. Will Iran then pose a threat. I don’t know but I do say the chances substantially increase. But alas, what are the possible threats. What are the potential outcomes. What actions if any could avoid each of the scenarios.

          You should know better than anyone that you can not apply logic exclusively to predicting human behavior. And in the end, that is what this is all about. The best you can do is create possible outcomes and assign probability.

  25. D13

    The other thing here also. We are not the only ones treating it as a chess piece…we just happen to be in the game. If we folded our tent, the game for Iran continues.

    In geopolitics, as one tent folds, a different color tents unfolds.

    If, instead, the US supported indigenous self-determination – what difference do you think that would make in the world – instead of treating such self-determination as a threat as per Eisenhower?

    • Actually, the US would be better off not supporting anyone. Self determination should always be the rule. Another does not need to sanction it….much less the United States. Personally, I could care less about that region. I had to fight there, live there, talk with the people there, understand their motives, learn their religion and history in order to deal with them…and I do understand them as well as you, maybe even better that you…but I differ from you. Both, you and I, are entitled to our opinion.

      As per the Eisenhower determination of “threat”…yes politics are strange bed fellows and decisions are made at the time and hindsight…is always 20/20.

  26. If you smacked a kid in the face with a bottle of Johnson’s No More Tears, would it create beautiful irony?

    Children in the dark cause accidents, accidents in the dark cause children

    You shouldn’t say anything mean about people who can’t read. You should write it instead.

    Imagine there were no hypothetical situations.

    Give a man a match and he’ll be warm for a minute; set him on fire and he’ll be warm for the rest of his life.

    Those who live by the sword get shot by those who don’t

    The Internet: All the piracy, none of the scurvy.

    A religious war is like children fighting over who has the strongest imaginary friend

    Depression is just anger without enthusiasm.

    He didn’t know if it was a gun in her pocket or she was just pleased to see him, but neither option looked good.

    Solution to two of the world’s problems: Feed the homeless to the hungry.

    Nite all, try to play nice.

  27. The US government is a bigger threat to my life and liberty than Iran has ever been. After all, it’s the mongoose in the cage with you that you should concern yourself with, not the pack of hyenas running loose two counties over.

    • Ah but Kent, it is the cobra in the grass that is truly deadly.

      Where is the snake????

      • That snake is anywhere there is someone who thinks it is acceptible to tell others how to live their lives even if those others are harming no one. In other words, anywhere there is a government.

        You are all arguing over which group of homocidal maniacs is preferable. The answer is that they are all unforgivable monsters you trust at your own peril. Me, I see through them and will never trust any of them. And if they lie to me and say they are doing what they are doing for my own good, I will doubly suspect them. I don’t believe in killing people for their own good or for their “freedom”. Stupid, evil, or insane; there are no other options.

        • Kent:

          I think you have micharacterized what we are “all” arguing about.

          Saw your articles on liers, cheats and thiefs. I noticed you were struggling with the “use of force” ethic a little when it comes to non violent acts.

          You may recall that some time ago I warned BF that using only the term “violence” and defining that to mean only ‘physical harm” creates an unreasonable constraint on the ethics to support it.

          If you use the concept of “coersive force” instead, you capture stealing and fraud as these forms of coersive force have the same impact to our right to exist as outright violence.

          Obviously, we shouldn’t necessarily have the same punishment for murder and fraud, but by my definition I and others can take action to defend myself or to capture and punish. I would probably use a police force for such action. You can use your private security force.

          Anyhow, I thought it was a good series. Thought I’ld let you know.
          JAC

  28. Poker night – probably back later, though.

    Kent, you are right. The man with a gun at my head is far more dangerous then the lunatic in another city.

  29. The bombing of the USS Liberty was ruled a horrible accident in the middle of a war.

    Ruled out – by who?

    The survivors fully dispute this and their evidence is overwhelming that it was purposeful.

    It is a shameful example of the US government protection of an Israeli false-flag at the loss of US military personal.

    The ship was to be sunk with no survivors – it took a US Commander to overrule his own President and send fighters that eventually broke the Israeli attack.

    A Medal of Honor was earned on that ship.

  30. Hi All

    I have to say something here, and get this off my chest. What’s wrong with this president? Does he have a mental problem or what? He’s out there talking about how this country can’t afford to be spending all this money, but what the hell is he doing? Talking about all these jobs he is suppose to be creating, for who, the invisible man? Where are these jobs at? People are still losing job, their homes, their insurances es, and what not.

    Now here is, starting to campaign for that Chris Dodd, who I understand is really in deep doo doo, along with Reid. He’s out there on all these talk shows, acting like he’s king shit. Wanting to ban Fox news from the white house because he doesn’t like them, now they’re being called the enemy of America. Won’t let them do any interviews with anybody from the white house. Telling General McCrystal to hold on until he can decide on what to do about sending more troops to Afghanistan, but will go to Copenhagen to try and get the Olympics to Chicago, and spent hours talking with them, but only 20 minutes with McCrystal. I can’t figure that one out.

    Have a $2500 a plate fund raiser for Dodd all the while saying we can’t be spending the money for foolish things. AH, Excuse me, but what the hell do you call that. His wife going on the talk circuit all the time talking about this health care bill. What I see, is blind siding the people while they are doing their sneaky tactics in getting this bill signed before anybody reads the damn thing. Spending money like it’s going out of style, when there isn’t any to spend. Seem like he’s just printing it faster than they can spend it.

    Don’t they have their hands in enough stuff as it is, with the auto bailouts, bank bailouts, taking over the health industry, the medical profession, I’m sure I left something out.

    My question for this president is, when do you plan on starting to act like one? And plan on starting to act like a leader instead of a campaigner? Quit going to these other countries and apologizing for America, we have nothing to apologize for. You have got to be the worst president since your peanut buddy Jimmy Carter, and the only thing he did any good for, was to start Habitat for Humanity, and that’s it. You have got us in so far into dept, it will generations to get out of.

    I have had it with you and your administraion, you have done nothing for this country since you took office. I am embarrassed by your actions. I do not see you acting like a proud American at all. I am a proud American and always will be, and I will not stand behind you ever.

  31. Sorry to hijack the thread but can anyone spot the problem in this quote?

    From: Appell, David, Sci. Am. 301, p.22, Nov. 2009:

    “Qualitatively, Tingley’s result resembles the same basic hockey-stick shape as previous reconstructions, except that it has more variability in the past. Perhaps more important, his analysis suggests that a similar treatment of all available proxy data in the Northern Hemisphere in the past two millennia should produce a statistically superior hockey-stick result. Tingley, now a postdoctoral student at the Statistics and Applied Science Institute in Research Triangle Park, N.C. plans to extend his method to examine the history of droughts in the southwesternU.S., as well as tempertures over wider areas and times.”

    • T-Ray

      Well lets start with: what the hell is “proxy” data? Did the data point decide not to stay on the graph so it picked some other point to stand in for it?

      Then lets move to the supposition that similar treatment of data will get the same result or even a better result. I have never run any type of statistical analysis where I could tell you I would get a “statistically superior hocky stick result” before I ran the data.

      Any guess what the curves will look like for the droughts and temps over wider areas?

      Oh, I almost forgot. Why only the northern hemisphere?

      Oh, I almost forgot forgot. “Qualitatively” his data now looks like a more accurate quantitative “reconstruction”.

      I am thinking about tearing up my Science degree.

      OK T-Ray, your turn. I’m curious what you had in mind.
      JAC

      • #2 Prejudgement of the result. The data should speak for itself. There is a graph in this “news” article if you care to look it up. I do not know if these are the words of the “reporter” or the words of the researcher. In either case, Sci. Am. should know better. Your other points are good as well. They are trying to apply Bayesian statistics to the tree ring,ice cores and other reccords with measured temperatures.

  32. icomeanon says:

    Iran, like the United States, has a right to protect itself against other countries with nuclear weapons. Just because we (as a nation) feel a little sketchy about other countries with nuclear arms doesn’t mean we have the right to police them. I understand the gravity of nuclear weapons, but I also understand the desire for control. Iran doesn’t want to be told what to do by a country (or the UN) what they can and can’t do. They’re not 5 year olds.

    After reading “The Stars My Destination” by Alfred Bester, I’ve come to realize that nuclear weapons are not the end all. They’re simply a hiccup in our society- a way to keep the populace away from real progression. How can we grow as humans when we’re all so caught up in a battle that shouldn’t be an issue to begin with?

    • I beg to differ with you on the threat Iran’s nuclear program poses if it is intended for manufacturing weapons of mass destruction…Iran does not need a sophisticated nuclear weapons program to be a player in the World. All it needs is the ability to proliferate smaller tactical nuclear weapons which would be more ideal for use say against a military power like Israel…Iran has a large enough program to make smaller Davey Crocket type of tactical nukes or a W-85 warhead. During the cold war the U.S. and former Soviet Union used nuclear weapons and the policy of “Mutually Assured Destruction” as a means to deterring a military strike by either side….Nuclear weapons were never intended to be actually used by either of the superpowers; they were a deterrence…Nuclear weapons in the hands of a country like Iran or that of radical Islam is a totally different situation that should not be handled lightly…Fanaticism is what is guiding people like Mahmoud Ahmadinejad…He says alot of good things at the United Nations for about 5 minutes and then for the remainder of the allotted time he is ranting on about the Koran and using it to justify his country’s actions.

      • thmbrown,

        I offer this different reasoning.

        MAD only applies to those that can assuredly destroy one another.

        Iran cannot destroy the USA nor Israel.

        Thus, any use of nuclear weapons assures Iran’s destruction even if they are ‘tactical’.

        MAD isn’t at work here.

        It is UAD – Utterly Assured Destruction.

        Iran is no threat for first use at all – fanatics or not.

        Claims of fanaticism always rests on the theory that the “other guy is insane”.

        However, the same reasoning to call the other guy insane is the same reasoning to call yourself insane.

        But you do not claim your self insane – therefore, claiming the other guy is insane is equally faulty.

  33. All due respect…Iran does not need worry about using nuclear weaponry and being assured of its own destruction! It’s the 21st century and asymmetric warfare makes MAD completely obsolete. Iran is smart enough to know they would have to use a proxy group that cannot be traced back to Iran.

    We’ve had enough trouble connecting the dots on the Oil for Food scandal and proving that Saddam was up to no good…he was getting around sanctions quite well with the help of corrupt UN officials and international businessmen. Most people think there is no evidence of Iraq’s state sponsorship of terrorism linking it to Al Qaeda, 9/11, or WMD…but can we all just admit that most of that controversy is politics? Both parties knew what was up, and the Democrats used it quite well to make Bush look inept. It’s rather disingenuous to imply our foreign policy was not bipartisan.

    Can anyone look at a map please and see the longer term strategic goal??? Sure, Iraq was a stretch, but both parties knew it. Stop blaming Republicans! It was done to surround Iran on either side. Anyone ever heard of gunboat diplomacy? That’s not to say Saddam wasn’t all those things, but we were more worried about Iran…they were more likely to achieve enrichment sooner. So sue us for deciding to take out Saddam a little earlier than planned.

    If Iran is able to play the game half as well as Saddam and get around sanctions while playing innocent, we’ll see a nuke go off somewhere, and Iran will be as blameless as public opinion holds Saddam when it comes to having (or even pursuing) WMD. Just blame the intel community, or crazy Christian conservatives for thinking ill of Iraq and Iran.

    I’m sick of people ignoring the obvious…like the UN refusing to let the GAO audit internal files on the OFF programme…does anyone watch these TV shows like “Law & Order” and “CSI”? Yes, innocent until proven guilty is our mantra, but can we admit it can be very hard to prove guilt even when it exists and is very obvious?

    I am one who is not going to sit idly and watch the world go to hell because we’ve become the new Red Coats in the War on Terror…as in we’re like the British trying to adhere to rules of combat that we say we must abide by to remain moral…yet clearly that thinking will get us killed and lose the war for us. The worst thing for the British was losing its biggest colony and a lot of revenue. We have much more to lose in this struggle.

    Meanwhile, terror groups will detonate more devices while we feverishly try to PROVE who did it and hold them to account…or just as important…as we try to hold member states to account for their intentional support of terror groups…and while we fail to find proof beyond reasonable doubt, bending over backwards to provide habeas corpus to all citizens of the planet Earth…another nuke, and another…will we beat the clock and succeed at controlling this virus just marching in straight ranks in open fields with red and white uniforms? History says the little guys will win with those rules…and the little guys are not us this time.

    I do not see every Muslim as my enemy, any more than I believe every Christian or Jew is my friend. However, the ideology of these religions are at war for a reason. We will all choose very soon whether we accept one version as truth or the other.

    See my web link.

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