July 7 - The latest report by Seymour Hersh in The New Yorker confirmed that the US is involved in counterinsurgency and black ops inside Iranian territory. The report came out just weeks after the AIPAC policy conference, where presidential hopeful John McCain told crowds that a nuclear-armed Iran is a danger we cannot allow and that Iran poses an existential threat to the state of Israel, underlining his camp's demonizing of Iran.
Trita Parsi, president of the National Iranian American Council, says this is the continuation of a failed policy which has "imposed a significant cost on the Iranian people", but not translated into a change in the policies of the Iranian government. According to Parsi, sanctions have the most influence in the context of a negotiation, and McCain has made it clear - he will never go to the table.
His Democratic counterpart, Barack Obama, has emphasized the need for negotiations, and has sparked the interest of the Jewish-American community and Iranians alike. Sixty-two percent of the Jewish-American community supports Obama, according to some polls. In Tehran, "there is a mystery that the next president of the United States may not only be African-American, but may also have a Muslim father and a Hussein as his middle name." Parsi tells The Real News Network's Pepe Escobar, "That actually can give the United States significant political capital that it can again utilize in the Middle East, but only in the context of negotiations."
The consensus among the Iranian-American community, much like the majority of the American population, Parsi says, is "that war would have tremendously negative consequences, and that it would be un-American to even vote for a military solution prior to having exhausted all other options."
To hear more, watch the full interview on The Real News Network
Lieberman wants stronger action against Iran
July 7 - On Sunday, Senator Joe Lieberman appeared on the ABC program "This Week." Lieberman, a strong supporter of John McCain, claimed that not only Israel but also Arab nations want the US to stop Iran's nuclear program.
"I would say that, obviously, Israel is first in the line of Iranian fire, and it represents an existential threat to Israel. But you know who's next? The Arab countries in the Middle East," Lieberman asserted. "And they're worried about the Iranian program and want us to act strongly to stop it." He did not say which Arab states he was talking about, nor did he quote the National Intelligence Estimate produced by US intelligence agencies that said Iran had stopped its nuclear weapons program in 2003. In recent months, there have been many high-level visits between Iran and many Gulf states, as well as attempts that are being made to reestablish relations between Iran and Egypt since they were cut off in 1981.
Senator Jack Reed, who has backed Senator Barack Obama for president, said that more was needed to be done diplomatically, as military actions by Israel would have dire consequences for the region: "I think we have to seize the time. As short as it might be, we have to seize the time for a diplomatic approach sincerely."
Watch the full story on The Real News Network.
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