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Thread: How Bush Would Gain From War With Iran

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2005

    How Bush Would Gain From War With Iran

    How Bush would gain from war with Iran
    The US has the capability and reasons for an assault - and it is hard to see Britain uninvolved,00.html

    Dan Plesch
    Monday August 15, 2005

    President Bush has reminded us that he is prepared to take military action to prevent Iran acquiring nuclear weapons. On Israeli television this weekend, he declared that "all options are on the table" if Tehran doesn't comply with international demands.

    In private his officials deride EU and UN diplomacy with Iran. US officials have been preparing pre-emptive war since Bush marked Iran out as a member of the "axis of evil" back in 2002. Once again, this war is likely to have British support.

    A plausible spin could be that America and Britain must act where the international community has failed, and that their action is the responsible alternative to an Israeli attack. The conventional wisdom is that, even if diplomacy fails, the US is so bogged down in Iraq that it could not take on Iran. However, this misunderstands the capabilities and intentions of the Bush administration.

    America's devastating air power is not committed in Iraq. Just 120 B52, B1 and B2 bombers could hit 5,000 targets in a single mission. Thousands of other warplanes and missiles are available. The army and marines are heavily committed in Iraq, but enough forces could be found to secure coastal oilfields and to conduct raids into Iran.

    A US attack is unlikely to be confined to the suspected WMD locations or to involve a ground invasion to occupy the country. The strikes would probably be intended to destroy military, political and (oil excepted) economic infrastructure. A disabled Iran could be further paralysed by civil war. Tehran alleges US support for separatists in the large Azeri population of the north-west, and fighting is increasing in Iranian Kurdistan.

    The possible negative consequences of an attack on Iran are well known: an increase in terrorism; a Shia rising in Iraq; Hizbullah and Iranian attacks on Israel; attacks on oil facilities along the Gulf and a recession caused by rising oil prices. Advocates of war argue that if Iran is allowed to go nuclear then each of these threats to US and Israeli interests becomes far greater. In this logic, any negative consequence becomes a further reason to attack now - with Iran disabled all these threats can, it is argued, be reduced.

    Iraq is proving an electoral liability. This is a threat to the Bush team's intention to retain power for the next decade - perhaps, as the author Bob Woodward says, with President Cheney at the helm. War with Iran next spring can enable them to win the mid-term elections and retain control of the Republican party, now in partial rebellion over Iraq.

    The rise in oil prices and subsequent recession are reasons some doubt that an attack would take place. However, Iran's supplies are destined for China - perceived as the US's main long-term rival. And the Bush team are experienced enough to remember that Ronald Reagan rode out the recession of the early 1980s on a wave of rhetoric about "evil empire".

    Even if the US went ahead, runs the argument, Britain would not be involved as Tony Blair would not want a rerun of the Iraq controversy. But British forces are already in the area: they border Iran around Basra, and will soon lead the Nato force on Iran's Afghan frontier. The British island of Diego Garcia is a critical US base.

    It is hard to see Britain uninvolved in US actions. The prime minister is clearly of a mind to no more countenance Iran's WMD than he did Iraq's. In Iran's case the evidence is more substantial. The Iranians do have a nuclear energy programme and have lied about it. In any event, Blair is probably aware that the US is unlikely to supply him with the prized successor to the Trident submarine if Britain refuses to continue to pay the blood sacrifice of standing with the US. Tory votes might provide sufficient "national unity" to see off Labour dissenters.

    New approaches are needed to head off such a dismal scenario. The problem on WMD is that Blair and Bush are doing too little, not too much. Why pick on Iran rather than India, Pakistan, Israel or Egypt - not to mention the west's weapons? In the era of Gorbachev and Reagan, political will created treaties that still successfully control many types of WMD. Revived, they would provide the basis for global controls. Iran must not be dealt with in isolation.

    As the Iran debate unfolds, we will no doubt again hear about the joint intelligence committee. We should follow the advice of a former head of the committee, Sir Paul Lever, to remove US intelligence officials from around the JIC table, where they normally sit. Only in this way, argues Lever, can the British take a considered view themselves.

    We need to be clear that our MPs have no mandate to support an attack on Iran. During the election campaign, the government dismissed any suggestion that Iran might be attacked as ridiculous scaremongering. If Blair has told Bush that Britain will prevent Iran's nuclear weapons "come what may", we need to be equally clear that nothing short of an election would provide the mandate for an attack.

    · Dan Plesch is the author of The Beauty Queen's Guide to World Peace, about which he is speaking at the Edinburgh Book Festival
    No One Knows Everything. Only Together May We Find The Truth JG

  2. #2
    ehnyah Guest

    and let's not forget...

    That halliburton just closed up shop there a few months back...

    "How was halliburton able to do business with a country that supports terrorism wich is illegal in the US?" might be saying.

    When you have a subsidiary called halliburton holdings in the cayman washes all away.

    we're not going to invade Iran, our terrorists will do it for us...


    US Openly Supports Iranian Terrorists

    The U.S. Government is now openly supporting the Mujahideen-e-Khalq, an Iranian resistance movement designated as terrorist organization by the US State Department. On June 20th of this year, the Mujahideen-e-Khalq held a conference at the Palestine Hotel in Baghdad, which is where many foreign journalists stay and is under the full protection of the U.S. Army. I was in the area of the hotel that day, and saw at least 10 U.S. tanks heading in the direction of the hotel to provide additional security. I knew of the conference in advance, because of a report issued to all NGO's working in Iraq, which mentioned that the conference would take place. The report warned of an increased danger of attacks against the hotel, as anti- U.S. insurgents were likely to attempt to disrupt the conference [1].

    The Mujahideen-e-Khalq (MEK) is a Marxist oriented Iranian resistance organization founded in the 1960's to topple the pro- western regime of Mohammad Reza Shah Pahlavi. Since that time, MEK has carried out scores of attacks and assassinated a number of Iranian government officials. MEK killed several American military and civilian personnel in Iran during the 1970's, and assisted in the occupation of the US embassy in Tehran in 1979 where American civilians were held hostage. Though MEK participated in the 1979 revolution, which toppled the Shah, once the Ayatollah Khomeini consolidated power in Iran, MEK moved their headquarters to Paris and continued resistance activities against the Islamic Republic. In 1981, MEK bombed the offices of the Islamic Republic Party, killing 70 high-ranking Iranian officials. MEK established its military headquarters in Iraq in 1986, where Saddam Hussein became their main source of funding and protection. In return, the MEK fought alongside Iraqi forces during the war against Iran in the 1980's, and assisted Saddam's security forces in putting down the Kurdish and Shiite revolts after the first Gulf War in 1991. The majority of Saddam's recently discovered mass graves are filled with the Shiite and Kurdish dead from this uprising. MEK military operations against Iranian targets continued through the 1990's. The U.S. Department of State added the MEK to its official list of terrorist organizations in 1997, and shut down the organization's Washington, DC office in 2003 [2].

    During the U.S. invasion of Iraq, MEK forces in Iraq surrendered to U.S. forces and turned over their military hard wear, including several thousand tanks, armored personnel carriers, anti-aircraft guns, and other vehicles. Despite denying suspected terrorists from Afghanistan and elsewhere prisoner of war status under the Geneva conventions, the US granted this status to detained members of MEK in Iraq [3].

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