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Going After Iran (Again)
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Today’s Washington Post featured an editorial page attack on Iran which deserves a rebuttal. The editorial denounces the visit made last week by Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to southern Lebanon. In a speech he said that the “Zionists will disappear” and “occupied Palestine will be liberated from the filth of the occupation by the power of the resistance…” The Post regards the timing and venue for the comments as “suggestive” as the Shiite Hezbollah militia has a supply of thousands of missiles aimed at Israel, so “Tehran can use its client to trigger a new war in the Middle East at any time.” This would be “a lesser form of the intimidation that it hopes to exercise around the region with an arsenal of nuclear weapons.” The editorial concludes that Iran is demonstrating its ability to “intervene” in Lebanon and to disrupt any peace settlement between Israel and Palestine or Syria while “not giving up its ambition to exercise hegemony over the Middle East.”

Quite a lot to digest. One does not have to be an apologist for Iran to note that the editorial is a whole lot of innuendo wrapped in speculation. In reality, Iran has not attacked any neighbor or triggered any war either directly or by proxy while it has been Israel that has been doing all the attacking. If Hezbollah uses the missiles it undoubtedly has it would be because it is attacked by Israel. Most people would consider that defensive. Israel is indeed occupying most of Palestine illegally and invoking the power of the resistance to drive them out is hardly wildly extreme language. Saying the Zionists will disappear is far from a call to war no matter how it is mistranslated while the alleged ambition of Iran including nuclear weapons and a desire for dominance of the whole Middle East is unsupported by anything that we know or that is actually taking place. But the most humorous line in the editorial has to be the reference to disrupting a possible “peace settlement” between Israel and the Palestinians. Can even the Washington Post really believe that fantasy? The Potemkin village peace talks are designed more to help Obama on November 2nd than to reach any agreement while it is clear that Israel wants peace only after the last settlement takes up the last remaining bit of Palestinian land.

(Republished from The American Conservative by permission of author or representative)
• Category: Foreign Policy • Tags: Iran 
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  1. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    I think the Attack Iran group (WPost, NYT, neocons etc) understands that its long-cherished hopes for a US or Israeli military assault on Iran is on hold for the time being. Awaiting a more propitious moment they’ll try to keep US troops on Iran’s flanks in Iraq and Afghanistan as long as possible.

    The US will continue to stand between Israel and its enemies, the bodies of Americans and Muslims will continue to pile up, as will the mutual hatreds that Israel and its US agents of influence hope will keep the US in the Israeli foxhole indefinitely.

    The price we pay for Israel continues to grow, even as Israel itself stands revealed as a bizarre semi-theocratic war state run by people who look and act like Eastern Bloc thugs, one that now requires an oath of tribal loyalty and and religious purity, a parasite living on US money and blood.

  2. Joe Dark says: • Website

    The main reason I don’t vote for Republicans in Congress or for the Presidency is taht I believe they will invade Iran as soon as they have the power

  3. Joe Dark says: • Website

    I don’t vote Republican because if they gain power I believe they will invade Iran

  4. hass says:

    Iran is disrupting peace talks, not Israel which continues to build settlements on stolen Palestinian lands? Give me a break.

  5. Andy says:

    “But the most humorous line in the editorial has to be the reference to disrupting a possible “peace settlement” between Israel and the Palestinians. Can even the Washington Post really believe that fantasy? ‘

    I agree with you on that but from a different perspective. Israel was willing at Oslo to agree to a Palestinian State within slightly modified 1967 borders. It seems to me that this is a religious conflict. It’s not about a Palestinian State. Before 1967 when the Jordanians controlled half of Jerusalem and the West Bank the Islamic world was not prepared to recognize a Jewish State and it likely won’t until messianic times. A truce/cold peace allowing Arabs and Jews a “normal” life while accepting the reality of occasional terror from those opposed to that scenario ,and harsh responses necessary seems a realistic short term goal. In the region Israel is a nuclear power and at present has a decent economy centered around hi tech as well. It seems to me that it’s not going way unless it self destructs. If the USA weans itself off its dependence on Mideast oil it can leave the region to work out their own problems. In the meantime the military industrial complex is doing well, the American taxpayer isn’t even getting cheap oil, and most tragically too many of our soldiers are paying for it with life and limb in Iraq and Afghanistan with no end in sight.

  6. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    The Potemkin village metaphor is apt but somewhat inadequate. The USSR threw up false building fronts and stage-managed the visits of their Western dupes inside Soviet geographic territory.

    The Israelis have extended this to what amounts to censorship of most of the US media.

    As far as the “peace process” is concerned, the Israelis will rip off US taxpayers for “pledges” and “concessions” that they will smirkingly renounce as soon as the loot is safely in their hands. They’ve already succeeded in charging us a kind of toll for the food and medicines we to send to Gaza.

    I don’t know why we bother. Except for the opportunities it offers for eyewash and graft no one takes it seriously.

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