America's favorite pastime
isn't baseball. It's war, permanent imperial wars that won't end in
our lifetime Dick Cheney said earlier.
America is addicted to war. One nation after another is ravaged and
plundered. Unchallenged global dominance is sought.
Who's next? Syria? Iran? Washington's long knives target both countries.
On June 29, AP headlined "US, Russia fail to reach agreement on Syria,
jeopardizing Annan plan to end crisis," saying:
Before heading for Geneva, Hillary Clinton and Sergey Lavrov met in
St. Petersburg. Differences between them weren't resolved.
Washington demands regime change. Moscow wants Syrians to decide who'll
lead them. Lavrov said:
We "agreed to look for an agreement that will bring us closer based
on a clear understanding of what’s written in the Annan plan that (all)
sides in Syria need an incentive for a national dialogue."
"But it’s only up to the Syrians to make agreements on what the Syrian
state will be like, who will hold (government) jobs and positions."
Putting a brave face on intractable differences, Lavrov hoped Geneva
discussions would move closer to resolving Syria's conflict peacefully.
"But I am not saying that we will agree on every dot."
Kofi Annan proposed unity government. Government and opposition members
would be included. Elements seeking belligerent change would be excluded.
Russia and other major powers expressed support. Washington insists
Assad must go. He told Iran's IRIB channel 4:
"We, in Syria, do not accept any model that is not Syrian and national,
regardless of whether it was imposed by superpowers or proposed by friendly
"No one knows how to resolve the problem in Syria as well as we do,
as Syrians….so, any model that comes from abroad is unacceptable regardless
of its content."
At the same time, he thanked Russia, China, and other countries for
trying to resolve things peacefully to restore stability.
On June 30, America, Russia, China, Britain, France, Turkey, Iraq, Kuwait
and Qatar met in Geneva. Moscow wanted Iran there. Washington rejected
Reports late Saturday said world powers struck a transitional government
deal. What part Assad would play remains unclear.
Russia says Syrians must decide who'll lead them. The deal struck has
Ahead of word from Geneva, insurgent leaders rejected transitional government
with Assad in it. Earlier they spurned peace initiatives. They take
orders from Washington.
Expect little more now than earlier. America won't tolerate peaceful
resolution. Regime change depends on violence and instability. What's
next remains to be seen.
Iran is also targeted. On June 25, Aviation Week (AW) headlined "Raiding
Iran Triggers Discussion of When and How," saying:
"Evidence is mounting that the U.S. defense community and the Obama
administration view 2013 as the likely window for a bombing attack on
nuclear and missile facilities."
"It could be earlier, timed to use the chaos of the Syrian government's
fall to disguise such an attack, or later, if international negotiations
with Iran stretch out without failing completely."
"But there is evidence that Iran's intransigence over shutting down
its uranium-enrichment program will not buy it much more time."
"The tools for (conducting) an attack are all operational."
Proponents in and outside America suggest Iran already conducted one
or more nuclear tests in North Korea. Corroborating evidence didn't
follow claims. They're baseless like other accusations about Tehran
menacing the region.
Debate continues in Washington. To attack or not attack? If so, when?
Electoral priorities dictate policy. Three unnamed retired senior war
planners offered views. Comments were as follows:
"I think it would take an extraordinarily dumb move on the part of the
Iranians to force U.S. kinetic interventions before the U.S. presidential
election (by abandoning negotiations)."
"Israel has fewer reservations (about attacking) given the recent solidification
of their government."
The most politically opportune time would be 2013 or 2014.
"The assessment I'm betting on is continued watching, but (with U.S.
forces) close to action."
An attack "would employ a totally stealthy force of F-22s, B-2s and
Jassms (joint air-to-surface standoff missiles) that are launched from
F-15Es and (Block 40) F-16s."
Other advanced weapons and radar jamming devices would be used.
"We should give Iran advanced warning that we will damage and likely
destroy its nuclear facilities. It is not an act of war against Iran,
the Iranian people or Islam."
"It is a pre-emptive attack solely against their nuclear facilities
and the military targets protecting them. We will take extraordinary
measures to protect against collateral damage."
The above comment doesn't square with reality. An attack means war.
Launching one assures many deaths. Vast destruction will occur. Civilian
infrastructure and military targets will be struck. War planners know
what's involved. The pattern repeats from one conflict to the next.
At a February Israeli security conference, Lt. General (ret.) Dan Halutz
(former IDF chief of staff) said Iran's nuclear program shouldn't be
used as an excuse for Israel to attack unilaterally.
"The military option should be last, and it should be led by others."
He meant Washington, but Israel would be involved.
Another issue is Syria. It has surveillance and air defense capabilities.
Damascus shares information with Tehran. Attacking Iran involves possible
routes over Turkey, Jordan, Syria, Lebanon and Israel.
Syrian radar would detect it. Ousting Assad denies Iran advance warning.
According to America's Israeli ambassador Daniel Shapiro, Washington
is ready to act if diplomatic talks fail. The military option is "not
just available, it's ready," he said.
"The necessary planning has been done to ensure that it's ready. The
international community has been notified."
According to US Defense Secretary Leon Panetta:
"The fundamental premise is that neither the U.S. nor the international
community is going to allow Iran to develop a nuclear weapon."
"We will do everything we can to prevent them from developing a weapon.
We have plans to be able to implement any contingency we have to in
order to defend ourselves."
Cyberattack is another option. According to US Lt. General (ret.) David
"It depends on what the objectives are. What we want to be able to do
is to get our foes to act in accordance with our strategic objectives
without ever knowing they have been acted upon. Operations in cyberspace
allow that to happen."
It's well known that Iran poses no nuclear threat. Claiming otherwise
is red herring cover for regime change.
Its program is peaceful. It complies fully with NPT provisions. US intelligence
and IAEA inspectors confirmed it. In contrast, Israel is nuclear armed
and dangerous. It menaces the region and beyond. It passes under the
On June 21, Haaretz headlined "As nuclear talks fail, US experts urge
Obama to weigh military option on Iran," saying:
Forty-four US senators wrote Obama. They want pressure, not more dialogue.
They listed specific demands. They include shutting down Tehran's heavily
protected Fordo facility, halting uranium enrichment above 5%, and shipping
amounts above it offshore.
They urged options including military action if Iran doesn't comply.
The House Armed Services Committee heard testimonies on "Addressing
the Iranian Nuclear Challenge: Understanding the Military Option." According
to former Senator Charles Robb:
"(T)he dual approach of diplomacy and sanctions simply have not proved
to be enough. We need the third track, and that is credible and visible
preparations for a military option."
"(W)e are not urging Israel to take unilateral military action against
Iran nuclear facilities, but we need to make their capability to do
so stronger so that Iran will take that threat more seriously."
"We are not advocating another war in this region," he claimed. His
comments, of course, don't square with reality.
Washington and Israel plan joint military exercises this fall. They
were scheduled earlier but postponed. Called "Austere Challenge 12,"
it's expected to be the largest scale operation between the two countries.
Last March, Senator Barbara Boxer (D. CA) introduced S. 2165: United
States-Israel Enhanced Security Cooperation Act of 2012. On June 19,
it was reported to committee. On June 29, it passed by voice vote.
HR 4133 is the companion House bill. On May 9, it passed overwhelmingly.
John Dingell (D. MI) and Ron Paul (R. TX) cast the only "no" votes.
Paul called the measure "another piece of one-sided and counter-productive
foreign policy legislation. This bill's real intent seems to be more
saber-rattling against Iran and Syria, and it undermines U.S. diplomatic
efforts by making clear that the U.S. is not an honest broker seeking
peace for the Middle East."
"The bill calls for the United States to significantly increase our
provision of sophisticated weaponry to Israel, and states that it is
to be U.S. policy to 'help Israel preserve its qualitative military
edge' in the region."
"While I absolutely believe that Israel and any other nation - should
be free to determine for itself what is necessary for its national security,
I do not believe that those decisions should be underwritten by U.S.
taxpayers and backed up by the U.S. military."
Paul added that the bill won't help America, Israel, or the Middle East.
It implicitly authorizes greater US regional intervention at a time
wars ravage it.
War with Syria and/or Iran will follow, he believes. According to Haaretz,
Washington and Israel "continue preparations for strik(ing) Iran's nuclear
facilities....A senior Israeli official (said) Netanyahu has decided
to attack Iran before the US elections in November."
The US-Israel Enhanced Security Cooperation Act reaffirms America's
"unwavering commitment to the security of the State of Israel as a Jewish
State." It's also to ensure its military strength.
House co-sponsor Eric Cantor (R. VA) said:
"This bill reaffirms Israel's right to defend itself against threats
and puts Congress on the record about America's long-standing commitment
to the US-Israel strategic relationship, a unique and special relationship
founded on shared interests and shared democratic values."
"This bill recognizes the profound threats the U.S. and Israel face
in the region and reiterates our commitment to standing side by side
with Israel during this pivotal and dangerous period of transition and
Following passage, AIPAC said:
"This vote is a testament to the broad, bipartisan support of the American
people for bolstering the ties between the US and our ally Israel."
"The United States benefits greatly through enhanced cooperation with
Israel, and this bipartisan bill recommends new avenues for the US-Israel
relationship to grow and strengthen in the fields of missile defense,
homeland security, energy, intelligence, and cyber security."
Congress recently voted to increase military aid for Israel's Iron Dome
missile defense system. Israel gets more annual aid than all other nations
combined. Most goes for military purposes.
Both countries are imperial partners. Together with Britain, France,
other NATO allies and regional ones, they threaten humanity.
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
His new book is titled "How Wall Street Fleeces America: Privatized
Banking, Government Collusion and Class War"
Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com and listen to cutting-edge
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