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Could the tail wag the dog?  And should we care?

By Dr B. Bahrami (UK)

In recent weeks western media have been awashed with rumours that US or her Israeli partner will launch a genocidal attack against the Iranian nation, in the Persian Gulf and surrounding countries you can hardly spit and not hit one of the US or her coalition of willing army bases or navy carrier battle groups, not to mention the blood curdling promises of Mr. Ben-Eliezer, Israeli minister and Presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton.

Iranian conundrum!

The reality is much more different, there is no doubt that sections of US government can't stand the idea that pesky little country like Iran can thumb its nose at them and become the bad example for the rest of the little countries around the world. Nevertheless, it has taken US army more than a decade and sudden collapse of Soviet Union and number s of unequal wars with weak and small countries such as Grenada 1983, Panama invasion 1989 and 1st Persian Gulf war in 1991, to overcome it's "Vietnam syndrome" and President Bush Snr to claim that "the ghosts of Vietnam had been laid to rest beneath the sands of the Arabian desert". However, today, the calculus of war with Iran has dramatically changed, not in the balance of military power (even though Iranian armed forces have shown that they are not a push over). It is the economical imperative and its implication for US and vis-à-vis the rest of the world that put the hold on another adventurism. According to Dennis Cauchon, writing for USA Today, the total US federal government budget deficit in 2005 including social security and healthcare should have been as much as $3.5 trillion, if they would have used standard accounting rules. This is while the US federal government using "creative book keeping" posted only $318 billion deficit in 2005. Considering the novel way by which Bush administration prepare their accounts, and have only requested $196-billion for wars in Iraq and Afghanistan for 2008, what would be the real cost to the American tax payer? Add to this, the vision of Mr. Bush and his Neocons buddies for the world, which Mr. Ledeen put it so 'quaintly' "If we just let our vision of the world go forth, and we embrace it entirely and we don't try to piece together clever diplomacy, but just wage a total war ... our children will sing great songs about us years from now" and so there would not be much hope for US economy let alone for the mankind.

The convergence of a number of other unforeseen events in international arena such as the credit crunch that like wild fire engulf US and western financial institutes, devaluation of dollar, resurgence of nationalist/left leaning governments in central and southern America, threat of global food shortages, Russian and Chinese growing military and economical clout and finally their fear of western military power eastwards expansion have had adverse effect for the push for new war in Middle East. Additionally, prohibition of Iranian nuclear industry has failed, and curtailing Iranian influence in Middle East seems an impossibility especially after the Israelis' well planned military blue print for Iran failed the Hezbollah test and "the birth pangs" of a "new Middle East" was nothing but a big fat egg on the face of US and it's "Moderate allies" not to mention the myth of mighty Israeli army. Nuclear armed Pakistan has become less reliable and stable by each passing day, creation of another war in western border of Pakistan would catapult the country into the abyss. Insecurity in Afghanistan and resurgence of Taliban and political uncertainty in Pakistan have put an end to their potential export routes for Central Asian hydrocarbons. More importantly, any war on Iran with certainty will destabilize the entire region, if not the whole continent, pushing the value of oil to over 200$ per barrel sending the world economy into severe recession if not depression. These imperative and strong likelihood of change in US administration would force pragmatic policy maker in US to come to term with new confident Iran resulting in improve relations between two countries possibly through a grand bargain. These are the reasons that the war with Iran at least for foreseeable future would not go further than wishful dreams of unscrupulous politicians. I should interject here, since the arms industry is abandoning Republican, their traditional allies for Mrs. Hillary Rodham Clinton, and she is desperately trying to please lobby groups such as AIPAC and her statements of willingness to annihilate Iranian nation, thus, there might not be much policy of détente.

Go on, go off process!

As possibility of war between US and Iran is diminishing and Neocons sun is setting, an unholy alliance between Neocons, Arab despots and Israelis has been born. Each with their own reason, Neocons with their ideology being rejected by American and ridiculed universally, have not achieved minuscule of their objectives, except for fattening the wallet of US defense industries and oil companies and possibly severely damaged the US economy. From Israelis standpoint the universal loss of US power and prestige could result in loss of their strategically importance for US, and forced to give concession to Palestinian (or god forbidden the viable state) and Syrian. Autocratic regimes in the region fearful of their own masses seeking ever more US protection. Thus, this axis of global hegemony and repression began anti-Iranian propaganda and subversion campaign. While Arab rulers paying for arming of the terrorist groups such as Jundollah and PEJAK in Iran, it is Israelis that provide their training and media cover directly or otherwise. These crucial strategic configurations in the Middle East has been in place since the inception of Islamic Republic and have reached its highest as Iran geo-political and geo-position within Middle East and the world is growing. Western tailor-made statelet in Middle East and their host of Emirs, kings, and "dynasty of President-for-Life" have used Arab Nationalism, and now Sunni/shiah sectarianism and Iranian ascendency as distraction for their population and crutch for them to prop up their undemocratic, brutal and incompetence regimes.

Paradoxically, these tactics has not been successful as the recent survey by BBC World Service have found that across the Arab world, Hezbollah's leader, Hassan Nasrallah, followed by Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad are the most popular leaders. In turn, fearing a backlash by their own masses forced Sunni-Arab rulers to maintain the cordial relation with Iranian, giving an air of normality in their relationship. Meanwhile, they are hoping that either the US or Israelis to engage Iran militarily, and try to put pressure on US administration by refusing to cooperate in Iraq and resist the American pressure to flood the market with cheap oil as they did in 1980s, while still financing the terrorists in Iraq.

In addition to the problems mentioned earlier, to wage a successful war against Iran in order to achieve policy objective of regime change, US army should degrade Iranian army command and control, air defense and retaliatory capacities quickly and permanently. To attain these objectives US military planners are facing major problems; their inability to penetrate Iranian army high command, in order to predicate or influence their action in events of US strike. This stems from the fact that US army rehabilitation from Vietnam war involved small scale war or war against the weak and corrupted regime that nearly in all cases their military high command were either trained or have been on US payroll. As a results, US and her allies in Europe and the region have begun to pull in their intelligence, and even US began to kidnap Iranian military personnel in Iraq. This is not to say that the Pentagon do not have static intelligence from their spy and eavesdropping satellite on Iranian armed forces which not only unreliable as they found out during Iraq invasion but also they lack human resources to analyse the mountain of data obtained. Another problem is, even if they would be able to blackmail or even promote one of their assets to Iranian command, the inherent ideological structure of Iranian armed forces would prevent the lower ranking officer to obey the order that they deemed against the good of the country.

Aggressor beware!

Importantly, international law is on Iranian side, any US aggression against Iran would be a clear violation of the Chapter I, Art. 2 (4), of the United Nations Charter and endangers international peace and security. In addition, such action will threaten the entire global order and negate the principles of collective security as enshrined in Chapter VII, Art. 51, of the UN Charter. Thus, US forces or any possible member of Coalition of willing in the region and beyond are subject to a "legitimate" retaliatory strike under Art. 51. Furthermore, although Bush administration withdrew from the International Criminal Court (ICC) it should be noted by other possible member of Coalition of willing such as UK, France, Italy, Germany, Denmark, Australia and Jordan that as signatory to ICC, "crime of aggression" will be one of the crimes over which the ICC has jurisdiction according to Art. 5 (2), Art. 12 (1) of the Rome Statute, where they are liable to be prosecuted and convicted for.

Sadly these International laws might not be enough to restrain these dangerous nations, as quote attributed to adviser to McCain's campaign, Mr. Robert Kagan, yet another Zio-con scholar at the another US institute studying 'peace' (The Carnegie Endowment for International Peace), "only the weak whine and moan about the sanctity of international law. The powerful, on the contrary, have a "propensity to use [their] strength" to achieve their political objectives. And there is nothing anyone can do to stop them from so doing".

As a results, the philistine in White house have come up with idea of ever escalating response. In simple term they would threaten Iran to comply with their demands and if she refuses they would bomb its infrastructure to smithereens, if Iranian resist further, they ratchet up the level and number of targets. Thus, the Islamic regime in fear of losing power and control would sit and do not escalate, in time the weaken and ruined regime shall fall.

Iranian 'not wanting to be a moaner' have understood these implicit and explicit warning and threat by US and its allies. Unfortunately for them, they can perform variation of Blitzkrieg so many times. Knowing its opponents strength and its own weakness, Iranian army have spent most of it's resources on indigenous missile, anti-aircraft, MANPADS and anti-ship missiles, and anti-armor weaponry. Thus, developing a asymmetric naval, air and land warfare doctrine which deny and/or delay the enemy(ies) air and sea supremacy. Trying to avoid confrontation they are sending their own messages that in events of any aggression they would defend Iranian territories by all means, and above all, time is on Iran's side.

Love me, love me not?

Zionist ruling Israel from the beginning have shown great deal of pragmatism and highest degree of self interest and shown no scrupulous in dealing with partner(s) or choosing benefactor(s), for example from secret deal with Abdullah I of Jordan for partition of Palestine to the head of "Zionist Federation of Germany writing to Hitler in 1933 calling for collaboration since both wanted removal of Jews from Germany" and using their assets in US such as Anti-Defamation League to spy on organizations that are deemed hostile to state of Israel and the apartheid regime of South Africa. Since the creation of state of Israel, they have changed patrons from Imperial England, communist Russia to today's US. Interestingly, today in spite of practically every member of political life and media in US are beholden to financial contribution of state of Israel sympathizer or affiliate, still Israel does not feel secure enough in its relation with US. This is the heart of problem for the state of Israel that one day her strategic assets in US government or media will desert her and support by Americans will falter. One important catalyst for this would be the cost that this one sided relationship have on US tax payers. Report by American Educational Trust (AET), a non-profit foundation in 2006 on Middle East Affairs (WRMEA), conservatively estimated the cumulative total direct US aid to Israel was $107.961 billion. According to WRMEA this is a very conservative estimation and as an example it gives the cost of Israeli-Palestinian conflict to the American tax payers to the tune of $3 Trillion. That is the reason which, without direct US funding of state of Israel, it can not balance its budget or finance its wars nor expand and maintain its occupation. It is due to this umbilical relationship, state of Israeli has been successful in manipulating public perspective and skew the US foreign policy according to her own interest, while reminding the US population about shared common interest and 'democratic values'. Perhaps, they refer to insatiable appetite of both countries' ex-presidents for opposite sex and ruling class for wealth even at time of war, or their love of 'animal welfare'. After all, it is not civil to kill the pet owner and leave the pet unprotected!

In words of one of the Israeli commentators commenting about the cost effectiveness of PR (after the recent war in Lebanon), he lament they did not try hard enough "to link the fight against Hezbollah to the European efforts against the Islamic fundamentalism in Europe... The Americans will be sympathetic to Israel's efforts to fight Hamas and Hezbollah only when they realize that they are just Iranian branches which see Israel as the "little devil"; it's destruction to be followed by the elimination of the "big devil" - the United States". However, Mordechai Vanunu give a clearer description for this incestual relationship(s): "There is a secret cooperation between Israel and the United States, Great Britain and France. These countries have decided to support Israel's nuclear might because they want Israel to be at their service as a colonial country that guarantees their control of the Middle East, to gain access to oil reserves in the region and to keep the Arabs living in underdeveloped states and amid fratricidal conflicts". Interestingly, this is not just the idea of a single dissident mad from 18 years of solitary confinement and incarceration, the Israeli paper Yediot Aharonot described Israel as "'the godfather's messenger' since [Israel] undertake[s] the 'dirty work' of a godfather who 'always tries to appear to be the owner of some large, respectable business". The Israeli satirist B. Michael also referred to U.S. aid as: "My master gives me food to eat and I bite those whom he tells me to bite". Aware of the nature of their strategic relationship, successive Israeli governments have been trying to strengthen their political influence and military position by any means possible, from spying on their patron saint to use lobby groups and not so much secretly becoming the World's 5th largest nuclear power by having between 200 and 500 thermonuclear weapons and a sophisticated delivery system, quietly supplanted Britain. In this endeavor they have the backing of Christian right, whom being incapable of changing anything in the US society, life style or even curb their own unholy excess. They have put their hope of salvation in wars and accelerating Armageddon by promoting a nuclear showdown with Iran.

Operation Tehran or there about!

However, war mongers in Tel Aviv and Washington have three main problems: one, Iranian nuclear program is not seen in the eyes of public as dangerous as the they have been portraying or hope for. Two, how to provoke Iranian to react giving them the an excuse to attack. Three, how to control the likely outcomes of the attack/war with Iran.

Following the same ideas Israeli tacticians and the Neo-Nuts in Bush administration have been trying to force US to engage Iran in open war. The pentagon has already drawn up plan(s) of series of airstrikes against Iran, talking up the malign influence of Iran in Iraq and region, and Iranian challenge to "world peace". Their action plan can take any form(s), from the 'false flag operation', provocative action(s), to direct attack against Iranian nuclear installation and Western-sponsored terrorist attacks irrespective of whether these are successful or not, or better yet "another Gulf of Tonkin". As a result, they have been pushing the fantasy of covert Iranian WMD program, until the National Intelligence Estimate did lay rest to it. Due to this, they change tact and stating that Iranian possession of nuclear knowhow/technology represents an "existential threat" for the state of Israel, and duly Washington and her cronies passed the fatwa that Iranian should cease to have the knowledge! However, in spite of Israelis' bravado they are unable to mount direct attack against Iranian nuclear instillation without direct help/involvement from US army and great deal of political arm twisting of neighboring countries by Washington. Therefore they have set in motion a set of preparatory plans. Tensions over Iraq and Afghanistan have increased. With the help of their asset in US Congress and Bush administration, they torpedo the bill prohibiting the use of funds for military operations in Iran (senate bill 759), subsequently, they designated the Iran's Revolutionary Guards as "foreign terrorist organization", paving the way for making association between Revolutionary Guards and insurgency in Iraq for justification of American military action. Finally, the "Night of the Long Knives", the sacking of Admiral William Fallon, the commander of US forces in Iraq and Afghanistan, for voicing his dissent against the war with Iran and replacing him with a person who tow the party line, the General David Howell Petraeus, the man with political ambitions of his own. However, pies de resistance should go to the former director of the CIA and now the US Defense Secretary Mr. Gate for service rendered for war with Iran: "Iranian are killing our boys". After all American citizen would not support another war in Middle East, but no one would dare to criticize the war against the people who "kill their boys".

Do to them as they do to you

The Neocons are correct in one point, that is, we are in collision course with US unless either we change our action drastically, move from Persian Gulf and forego our hydrocarbon reserves or US change her posture towards Iran. That is the principal behind their insistence that Iran should not even have the nuclear knowhow and sign up to complete intrusive inspection regime. This will provide them with opening with which they can obtain sensitive information with regards to our national defense. As a results, in the next 2-3 years if and when US extradite herself from Iraq and manage to subdue Taliban in Afghanistan, US will have enough man power to mount full aerial, naval and ground attack against Iran, blockading the Iranian air and sea and try to occupy Khuzestan.

We Iranian can not have any illusion that present constraints would last for ever, and next US administration would not follow the same path of confrontation and agitation against Iran or forego their desire for 'full spectrum domination of the world' or place our hope on other world powers such as Russia or China to try to curb the US voracious appetite for power and materials. Additionally, it would be naïve to think that these powers do not have imperial grand strategy of their own. This has been very much evident in the manner by which Russian and Chinese have dealt with Iranian nuclear reactor construction and nuclear dossier at UN security council.

Our opponents put their hopes on their technical superiority, more importantly in our human failings. They are betting on our greed, fear and prejudices, the lowest common denominators among the mankind and the tool by which they hope to destroy our fortitude, moral and hence our country. Through our history we have had to face numerous hordes and overcome them. They stayed in our country, wear our clothe, loved our culture and architecture and were assimilated within our superior culture, and when they left they took our culture to far-flung lands. However, this new batch of savages are not here to enjoy Shiraz summer or Friday Mosque of Isfahan or blue sky of Yazd or carpet bazaar in Tabriz, they are here to enslave us and when we have nothing to take they would release us to be rehired as cheap labour. They would not appreciate Hafez or erect beautiful blue tile mosques. It would be folly to think that we can rally around yet again and civilized this new batch of savages as we did again and again in our past history. It would be laughable to think that Captain William C. Rogers III of Vincennes wearing his "heroic achievement" medal reading Rumi's poetry.

The blatant disregards for the established world order (very much imperfect that it is) in pursuing their own strategic and economic interest have been passing among other powers like communicable disease. Western powers close military alliance with the United States is to be further entrenched with the building of new military bases all over the world and especially near Iranian border. France new government is busy building new military base in UAE, while US have already "modernized" listening/radar post near Iranian Azerbaijani border. These actions will negatively influence or undermine our interests in region. Unfortunately, for world community, the lawless actions of US administration and its coalition of rogue states have resulted in broken down international institution and treaties and much worse brazen acceptance that "might is right". United nation and especially UN Security Council have become no more than usual ogre to be used as whim of few countries. United Nation Secretary General has become no more than functionary that would not speak on any matter until he has been told it is safe to do so. Bizarrely, this is what ex-US representative in UN have previously predicted "There is no such thing as the United Nations. There is only the international community, which can only be led by the only remaining superpower, which is the United States".

 Under these circumstances, in order to defend our territorial integrity and independent, our defense forces will need the ability to maintain a posture of strategic deterrence, to counter enemy(ies) who possess WMD, while to respond to adversary(ies) who benefited from ground, naval and aerial superiority. Therefore, we will need to take advantage of new technologies and tactics, hence, the 'self-fulfilling prophecy'! Regrettably we will need the capability/capacity to produce a nuclear weapon in order to protect ourselves with logic of 'mutually assured destruction'.


Lessons from the past missed today!

Ominously for us Iranian, while the western and up coming eastern powers are busy consolidating their hold on world resources and develop their scientific and military powers, many among our ruling class busy placing their sons, cousins and son in laws in well paid governmental jobs and their associates busy building their business empires on the back of free grants from public purse. The Orwellian view of the world that has been the mantra of Neo-colonialist has also seeped through our culture and among sections of our citizens. Now bad is good, down is up, dishonesty is integrity, we are no longer define people by their true achievements, thieves and wild boys are now called clever, astute businessmen as if honesty integrity has no value any more. Alas, it seems that it is not only the western powers who yearning for good old 18th century, some in Iranian government also think that the Ghajar dynasty's practices are well suited for Iran in the 21st century. They do not own Iran or Iranian nation or religion as each has survived centuries without them and they can do so yet again. Not being indebted to foreign powers does not exclude Iranian elite from being scrutinized by Iranian nation. Granted Iranian system is not perfect and still developing for good, however they should not mistake nationalistic and religious fervor as bottomless well that you can just dip in every election. Sadly, in today's Iran to be able to criticize the government, using facilities provided by public purse (yes, even supposedly private newspapers!) you should be heavily associated with many centers of powers and even then it is rather exercise in navel-gazing, and at most tainted with personal political affiliation. It is quite strange that President of the country is aware of the blatant case of bribery and has corroborating witnesses still hesitant of naming the culprit or ask the relevant judicial branch to arrest the person. It is strange that in Islamic country that average salary is barely enough to cover a minimum standard of living, the former deputy chief in the Iranian army have enough left over to put in Japanese bank which in turn they be able to block it (is it one way of circumventing US sanction?). 

This is not to say that Iran is ripe for regime change nor the minority that live in Iran are wanting or have any sympathy for the west fantasy of Balkanization of Iran. Iran and its citizen are not artificial entity with no clear sense of national identity created a day and a half ago by mandate of western powers.  Nor there is inclination among young Iranians to forego their integrity and independence for better view of Mrs. J lo's backside or Mr. Brad Pitt abs, irrespective of how delightful as they may be! These are in spite of the concerted efforts by Iran's sworn enemies and miniscule number of turn coat traitors residing in and out of Iran. Alas these have given Iranian elites a false sense of security and feeling of being beyond reproach. They have came to power as pious worldly people, to replace a corrupt and oppressive regime. They came to remove the system of 100 families not to replace it with 1000 families, they came to power as progressive movements for liberation and egalitarianism. These are points that they should consider as they assess their achievement and failure. Iran is a nation not an on going experiment that can be stopped, thrown away, or restart. Every year that we lose, we lose the opportunities to enable our country to attain its true position in world stage. We cannot blame or expect our opponents to act against their hegemonic nature. Their immoral foreign policies are based on the character of their leaders, not upon the human values for freedom, fairness and empathy. The Iranian ruling elite should come with coherent program for defense and development of the country, and define with what criteria they want to be judged at the end. It is not to arrogate to ourselves a role of influential world power, it is to say that we have great potential to achieve much more and deserve better. As Dr. Samuel Johnson once said "Integrity without knowledge is weak and useless, and knowledge without integrity is dangerous and dreadful".

Chapter I Art. 2 (4) of the UN Charter

All Members shall refrain in their international relations from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any state, or in any other manner inconsistent with the Purposes of the United Nations. 

Chapter VII Article 51

Nothing in the present Charter shall impair the inherent right of individual or collective self-defense if an armed attack occurs against a Member of the United Nations, until the Security Council has taken measures necessary to maintain international peace and security. Measures taken by Members in the exercise of this right of self-defense shall be immediately reported to the Security Council and shall not in any way affect the authority and responsibility of the Security Council under the present Charter to take at any time such action as it deems necessary in order to maintain or restore international peace and security.

Article 5, Crimes within the jurisdiction of the International Criminal Court

1.The jurisdiction of the Court shall be limited to the most serious crimes of concern to the international community as a whole. The Court has jurisdiction in accordance with this Statute with respect to the following crimes:

(a) The crime of genocide;

(b) Crimes against humanity;

(c) War crimes;

(d) The crime of aggression.

2. The Court shall exercise jurisdiction over the crime of aggression once a provision is adopted in accordance with articles 121 and 123 defining the crime and setting out the conditions under which the Court shall exercise jurisdiction with respect to this crime. Such a provision shall be consistent with the relevant provisions of the Charter of the United Nations.

Article 12 Preconditions to the exercise of jurisdiction

1. A State which becomes a Party to this Statute thereby accepts the jurisdiction of the Court with respect to the crimes referred to in article 5.

... Payvand News - 05/14/08 ... --

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