Category Archives: Iran

Odds of An Attack on Iran Just Went Up

Admiral Fallon Resigns | The Agonist.

I'm not saying it's going to happen, but with Fallon there the odds were very high that an attack on Iran wasn't going to happen. Now the odds are not as high.

Update: Good comments (and great pun) at Fallon on His Sword. And see Adm. Fallon resigns as CENTCOM Commander.

Update2: Does anyone know how many carrier groups we currently have in the Persian Gulf?

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Bush as a Potted Plant

Kevin Hayden has it half right:

The American Street » Blog Archive » Let's assume Bush was telling the truth today: Even if we grant him the credibility that he was telling the truth about the NIE report (which was withheld from the public all year… by whom?) ask yourself if the world's most powerful leader is suggesting World War II may be possible, and if his team is failing to let him know what the NIE said till a week ago, and if he had a vague suggestion in August that the NIE contained different information that was notable, then:

1) This is December. Why did he wait three months for a followup?

2) If his staff is withholding such critical information for all year, doesn't it indicate someone's judgment is faulty?

No, it means the staff knows better than to interrupt the Bush brush clearing with pesky details. And Cheney and Addington make the decisions. Or at least made them until Gates teamed up with the CIA…

I'd really like to see someone asking the GOP candidates in a debate to grade the Bush presidency. How many would dare give it even a B-? But how many would dare go lower?

Posted in Iran | 2 Comments

Rats

In 14 Spy Squirrels In Iranian Custody we learn that Iranian authorities have recently arrested more than a dozen squirrels for espionage. Unfortunately, this has no connection with the other piece of Middle-East bait-related news, U.S. Aims To Lure Insurgents With 'Bait': Snipers Describe Classified Program.

From the second story:

A Pentagon group has encouraged some U.S. military snipers in Iraq to target suspected insurgents by scattering pieces of “bait,” such as detonation cords, plastic explosives and ammunition, and then killing Iraqis who pick up the items, according to military court documents.

From the first story:

“In recent weeks, intelligence operatives have arrested 14 squirrels within Iran's borders,” state-sponsored news agency IRNA reported. “The squirrels were carrying spy gear of foreign agencies, and were stopped before they could act, thanks to the alertness of our intelligence services.”

One story is horrific — our tax money is now being used to shoot civilians who bend over to investigate shiny stuff on the street — and the other story is just weird. The article is silent as to what sort of bait was used to catch the squirrels.

Posted in Iran, Iraq | 1 Comment

It Can’t Happen Here

This clip from an Australian comedy show, the Chaser's War on Everything, which purports to be man-in-the-street interviews of somewhat ordinary Americans (conducted by US-based reporter Charles Firth?) must be a spoof. It's probably a spoof. I mean, it has a laugh track. I hope it's a spoof.

People wouldn't really say that stuff just sixty years after the Holocaust, would they?

Posted in Civil Liberties, Iran | 1 Comment

Not In My House

Every so often I think, “maybe we should buy a TV”. Then I read stuff like this catch at Amygdala:

Katie Couric just led off the opening story on tonight's CBS Evening News by announcing that “President Ahmadinejad of Iran, an enemy of the United States, arrived tonight….

That's just the sort of neutral reporting I want to expose myself and my family to on a nightly basis.

As Gary Farber says, is there an official national enemies list somewhere?

Nixon must be smiling in his grave. Actually, you know it's bad when the administration starts making you think Nixon was better than what you've got… After all, they stole both money and elections on a much smaller scale….

And CBS, even after he and Agnew broke its spirit, was never this deferential to Nixon.

Posted in Iran, The Media | 5 Comments

My That’s a Big Sabre You Are Rattling There

Over at Hullabaloo, tristero gies credence to the idea that the nuclear missiles “accidentally” flown via B-52 from Minot, North Dakota to Barksdale, Louisiana, in violation of policy that we don't have planes with nukes flying around the US, were actually flown there intentionally because, he says, “Barksdale Air Force Base is being used as a jumping off point for Middle East operations. “

His theory — they want to drop the big one on Iran.

I do think that's a bit tinfoily. But it would not be hard to persuade me that this “accident” and the “unauthorized leak” were some sort of psychops procedure to make the Iranians think we plan to bomb them.

In some ways I think I'd rather believe that than the official, and most likely, story—that a pilot could fly off with at least five nukes by mistake. And no one would notice for three hours.

Posted in Iran, Politics: Tinfoil | 2 Comments

Bush Plans to Attack Iran, Guardian Says

UK's Guardian newspaper says, Cheney pushes Bush to act on Iran:

The balance in the internal White House debate over Iran has shifted back in favour of military action before President George Bush leaves office in 18 months, the Guardian has learned.

The shift follows an internal review involving the White House, the Pentagon and the state department over the last month. Although the Bush administration is in deep trouble over Iraq, it remains focused on Iran. A well-placed source in Washington said: “Bush is not going to leave office with Iran still in limbo.”

The Guardian isn't 100% reliable on US news, but this fits with a lot of what is going on, including the apparent deployment of a third carrier group to the Persian Gulf and despite opposition from high-ranking officers. Note, however, that the deployment of the third carrier group may be escalation, or it may be mere rotation.

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