Right wing talking heads notoriously howl that Obama is too soft on Iran. That is to be expected, it seems. DLC-oriented apologists, by contrast, seem to argue that Obama is doing everything in his power to bring the terrible, terrible, and sooo unreasonable Iranians to the bargaining table, while confronting them with ‘consequences’ for their petulant, yet Hitlerian, intransigence. That too is to be expected, I suppose. What baffles me at times is what seems to be the collective alterna-pundit point of view. Most alterna-pundits seem to be at pains to convince us that an attack on Iran is highly unlikely, and that any pressure towards war is coming from the (mostly neo-con) ‘war party’, and isn’t Obama’s fault. They seem to imply that our role must be to support Obama harder in his brave efforts to achieve peace, to convince us that he is our best hope. WHERE ARE THEY GETTING THIS?! At times they sound like they are passing along talking points. But if they are wrong about Obama the Secret Peacemaker, and because we believe them we continue to support Obama, instead of opposing him … ?
Yes, it’s baffling and fascinating to watch alternapundits continue to claim that the Obama Regime will not attack Iran. For one thing, THEY ALREADY HAVE (attacked Iran)! These powerful sanctions coming down on Iran from the UN Security Council and from the US, EU, etc., ARE war, economic war (US-backed terror attacks too are war, of course). According to reports, Iranian society is already hurting very badly from these sanctions, and in the forseeably escalating Iranian turmoil, it’s possible that a coup will ocurr in Iran, probably backed by the US covertly (presumably via the ‘Green Revolution’), and possibly (probably?) backed by the US military openly (if the government in Iran tries to crack down using military force, which it would have to do in the face of a coup, in which case the US might seek to destroy and suppress the Iran Revolutionary Guard). Is this the kind of scenario folks are envisioning when they depict Obama as a Secret Peacemaker? Are they suggesting that he is arranging a ‘Glorious Revolution’ for Iran?
Many will surely hail Obama if it works out that way, and he will undoubtedly get another Nobel Prize for (supposedly) avoiding the war that once appeared certain. No one, perhaps, except a few quibblers on the ‘far left’ and ‘far right’ will worry about the notion that if one nation can be stripped of its right to choose its own government based on rumors, shady allegations, lies and distortions, all about really nothing, any nation can be stripped of its sovereignty the same way; many nations will just be glad it wasn’t them being picked on this time. Chavez will be the only one getting upset, knowing he is next in line. Chavez, no doubt, can see that many of the same techniques that seem to be working brilliantly in Iran – external military pressure combined with interior political manipulation (eg. ‘twitter revolution’) – are already well underway against him…
?Apparently many or most folks in America have long since accepted the notion that every nation has as much sovereignty as the US and allied elites allow it to have (not that most folks would ever put it that way), which means, none. Sovereignty increasingly seems to be something that exists in name only. International law seems to be reduced to Might Makes Right. Some would argue that it has never been anything else, and will (and already do) ‘blame the victim’, suggesting that Iran brought it all on itself because it refused to bow to the Hegemon, refused to bow to ‘reality’ – something Obama and Obama band-wagoners are known to bow to assiduously.
? Or maybe there will be an extended shooting war after all; in that case, Obama might have to wait a year for his second Nobel Prize!
? But really, one has to laugh when folks suggest that Obama doesn’t intend to attack Iran. For one thing, as pointed out before, the attack is already well under way. And while the Obama Regime takes care to declare Obama’s preference for ‘engagement’ on a regular basis, every administration comment on Iran seems to end in some very threatening reiteration that all options are very much ‘on the table’. Obama’s much cited ‘diplomacy’ has plainly been the same as Bush’s ‘diplomacy’ – little more than dressed up ultimatums, with the one difference that Obama offered a poisoned deal, last October, and as soon as Iran hemmed and hawed, predictably, while making some reasonable counter-proposals, Obama not only rejected any further negotiation, but did so with extreme anger and prejudice, REPEATING that behavior even more harshly when Turkey and Brazil did what he refused to do, actually negotiating with Iran, and thus making the deal Obama refused to complete. So where is all this upratcheted confrontation headed, if not to war? It looks like the only thing that will stop a war from happening is an internal breakdown in Iran, possibly leading to the above mentioned coup. As we saw with Honduras, Obama likes a coup, especially if he can pretend, however implausibly, to have nothing to do with it.
?The sheer ridiculousness of the Obama Regime’s ‘case’ against Iran has been on display in recent days, highlighted by the unfolding Amiri Spy-Who-Left-Me drama. Even if Amiri in fact defected to the US, and wasn’t abducted as he and Iran claim he was, the whole affair shows how desperate the US is to acquire, apparently by any means, anything they can point to as ‘evidence’ against Iran. Remember, this ‘defector’ was apparently often cited as one of the background sources of information against Iran that was supposed to be just terribly, terribly important. But it appears he was little more than a glorified graduate student all along. Shades of the Iraq war propaganda: these people in the Obama Regime (and in the Bush Regime previously) are obviously throwing any crap against the wall they can think of, just to see if they can get some of it to stick. Put differently, they are ‘fixing the facts around the policy’.
?And speaking of throwing crap against a wall, the bit of theater at WINEP the other day was truly classic.
?“Reza Kahlili, a self-proclaimed former CIA “double agent” inside Iran’s Revolutionary Guards, appeared in disguise at a Washington think tank Friday claiming that Iran has developed weapons-grade uranium and missiles ready to carry nuclear warheads.?The pseudonymous Kahlili, whose previous accounts have been greeted with widespread skepticism, also said Iran was planning nuclear suicide bombings with “a thousand suitcase bombs spread around Europe and the U.S.”?“This is a messianic regime. There should be no doubt they’re going to commit the most horrendous suicide bombing in human history,” Kahlili said. “They will attack Israel, European capitals and the Persian Gulf region at the same time, then they will hide in a bunker [until a religious prophecy is fulfilled]… and kill the rest of the nonbelievers.”?Kahlili was showcased Friday by the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, a Washington think tank founded by a former senior official of the American-Israel Public Affairs Committee.?He appeared wearing dark glasses, a surgical mask and a San Francisco Giants baseball cap, and spoke through a voice altering apparatus. Bodyguards stood nearby.”
?What strikes me here is the sheer disdain that the pack of warmongers surrounding Iran seems to have for We the People. They barely even try to make a credible case for yet another War of Aggression (which is a crime against humanity, but I know no one cares about that quaint old idea any more). They know that, the media and the punditocracy being just about completely coopted and owned, THEY DON’T HAVE TO, and Lurid works better than Credible anyway…
No doubt some will defend Obama by pointing out that public opinion in the US, including public opinion within the Democratic party, seems to lean heavily towards war against Iran…
The apparent depravity and sadism of the war-intoxicated US populace is a topic to be discussed another time (suffice to say for now that if Americans had not been embrined in pro-war propaganda for decades now, they might be more gently and kindly inclined); sadistically inclined or not, it seems unlikely that a population already sick of wars in Afghanistan and Iraq would favor a new war had it not been for a year and a half of relentless anti-Iran propaganda and relentlessly heated confrontation towards Iran by the Obama regime. The Obama Regime may be leaning backwards while it runs towards war, but it is clearly leading the charge.?
Obama has done a brilliant job, one must say, of getting the ‘powers that matter’ globally on board with its (and Bush’s) absurd, and shockingly cruel Iran policy. What that says about the nature and character of global governance at this point in global history is another topic worth discussing, another time. Obama’s kind of ‘global consensus’, which includes the UN Security Council permanent members, but excludes most of the world (just recently, for example, ALBA condemned the rising anti-Iran movement …
but you won’t likely see that in US media), is a trick that Bush could not have pulled off. Hmmm. Is a pack of bullies better than one very powerful bully?
As the Amiri case demonstrates so neatly, there are few or no cogent arguments in play in the controversy against Iran. There is mainly lots of ’sound and fury signifying nothing’, except for one thing: the wind has been steadily picking up, and it does seem to have a direction, and that direction seems to be towards war.
The Leveretts have a good discussion of the Amiri situation: