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24 September 2007

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J

You are correct in that the 'die is cast' in that that Iran is being mis-characterized by western press. Cheney, trans-national corporations, along with the Israeli govt. want 'total control' of the Mideast where there is no longer a vibrant neighborhood, but one master and the rest all servants, one master of all available neighborhood resources.

Walrus

Col. Lang, thank you for posting the substance of the speech. I don't see the visit or speech as meaningless however.

I think Ahmenijad is trying to do an "End Run" around the Neocons and the Mainstream media to try and develop some form of direct relationship with the American public.

His purpose of course is to try and stop the Administration from bombing Iran, but I'm afraid that train has already left the station unless the American public can be persuaded that Ahmenijad and his fellow Iranians are flesh and blood and not ogres, and therefore worthy of some form of dialogue instead of war.

However, I don't think he will succeed. AIPAC and the NeoCons have the mainstream media by the throat - that much is obvious.

J

It is so sad watching the neocon war against Iran opera unfold with its propaganda against the Iranian leader putting words in his mouth by accusing him of saying that he wants Israel wiped off the map, when he made no such comment. The Iranian prez quoted an old saying of Ayatollah Khomeini calling for 'this occupation regime over Jerusalem" to "vanish from the page of time.' Calling for a regime to vanish is not the same as calling for people to be killed. 'If' the Iranian prez is such a homicidal maniac, then why are there 20,000 Jews in Iran along with one who is a member of the parliament?

The 'intentional' mis-translation of what Ahmadinejad said, is 'on purpose' designed to 'intentionally' give the wrong impression.

Now where have we seen wars started in the past over bad translations? Hmmm......

It is as you said 'the die has been cast'.

David Solomon

Colonel Lang,

I watched the entire event on the web and I must say that President Bolinger made a very bad impression.

Ahmadinejad, on the other hand, clearly presented himself as a skilled politician. He definitely did not come across as the country bumpkin that the "decider" and the corporate press have portrayed.

I was particularly fascinated by the way he managed to combine his religious ideas with those of Jews and Christians alike. I realize that Muslims believe that the Prophet Mohammad is the last in the line of great prophets. Personally, I can do without the religious rhetoric. Nevertheless, it was consistent and appeared to be designed to enfold the Christian right.

The only place he seemed to really falter was in his comment that their were no homosexuals in Iran.

Altogether, I thought it was an interesting event.

William R. Cumming

Well we do have one thing in commmon with Iran. Saddam Hussein misjudged them in 1980 when he launced his attack (invasion) and he misjudged the rationality of the US. Was it his problem or Iran and the US?

jonst

The last sentence in your post says it all.

JohnH

Now if only Bush would agree to be interrogated at Columbia, we might get some answers as to what on earth he thinks he's doing!

J

Now the clueless come out of the woodwork -- the latest -- [Rep. R-CA Duncan] Hunter: I Will Try To 'Cut Off Funds To Columbia University' Because Of Ahmadinejad Speech
http://thinkprogress.org/2007/09/24/hunter-columbia-funding/

Now what will cutting off funds to Columbia univ. do except hurt American kids. And to think that Mr. Hunter wants to be our prez. Such statements for political pandering purposes show a candidate's true light -- as in not running on all their 'candidate' cylinders upstairs.

Cut off Columbia's funding and hurt American kids all because of one individual's speech? Sheez louize.

Lysander

Colonel Lang,

Do you believe an American attack is possible without serious retaliation from Iran? Much is made of their means to hit back, but this was also the case in Gulf war I, with Saddam's "battle hardened million man army" and "elite Republican Guard."

In the end all that talk made opposition to the war based on enemy capabilities a moot point.

Do you think the current white house has concluded Iran can't really retaliate? Or that it can but they're ready to pay any price?

Thank You

graeme

"On the whole I think this event was meaningless. I think that the die is cast and that this will have no effect on the international game."

Do you think it will have much impact in Agitprop terms? I watched NBC tonight and Ahmadinejad was described as a holocaust denier who is actively killing Americans, wants to destroy Israel and is pursuing nuclear weapons.

That's par for the course, but it was prominent coverage. Or, is it not much of a factor? I don't know to well about what sort of a press campaign they'd need before they would bomb Iran.

Clifford Kiracofe

"One of the few remaining neoconservatives in America was recently granted a private audience in the White House to deliver a 45-minute sales pitch to convince President Bush, accompanied by political deputy Karl Rove, to bomb Iran.

Norman Podhoretz, who is among a dwindling class of aggressive defenders of President Bush's Iraq invasion, argued the United States needed to bomb Iranian nuclear facilities, the author tells The Politico Monday. The longtime editor of Commentary magazine, Podhoretz is now serving as a foreign policy adviser to Rudy Giuliani's presidential campaign.

Although Bush "didn't tip his hand," Podhoretz says he believes that "Bush is going to hit" Iran before his term ends, The Politico reported."
http://rawstory.com//news/2007/Top_neocon_urged_Bush_to_bomb_0924.html

Course Elliott Abrams is married to a daughter of Podhoretz's current wife, Midge Decter.

"His family ties have helped propel Abrams into the center of neoconservatism’s inner circles over the past few decades. In 1980 he joined one of the two reigning families of neoconservatism through his marriage to Rachel Decter, one of Midge Decter’s two daughters from her first marriage. As a member of the Podhoretz-Decter clan, Abrams became a frequent contributor to Commentary and Norman Podhoretz’s choice to direct the magazine’s symposiums on foreign policy. As one of the leading neocons in the Reagan administration, Abrams also served as a liaison between government and the right wing’s network, as exemplified by his appearances at the forums organized by Midge Decter’s Committee for the Free World in the 1980s."

http://www.commondreams.org/views05/0209-22.htm


Perhaps the post bombing scenario will catastrophic enough for the US foreign policy elite to sober up...but I don't think it will matter...will take a more powerful nemesis of some kind I imagine.

Richard Whitman

I also listened to his speech. I do not agree with you that the event was meaningless. Anti US and anti western Muslims around the world have a clear leader now. His performance also is bound to affect professional diplomats and elites from Muslim countries. The effect in the US is probably neglible.

Peter Principle

On the whole I think this event was meaningless. I think that the die is cast and that this will have no effect on the international game

The event may have been meaningless, but the willingness of Big Media to turn themselves (again!) into cheerleaders for a neocon-induced war hysteria is anything but.

On the Iran issue, at least, it's increasingly difficult to tell the difference between MSNBC and the old Pravda -- with the single exception that the cynical old Pravda hacks just wrote what the party bosses told them to write, while their modern American counterparts appear to believe the neocon party line in their hearts and souls (Or what pass for souls among these journalistic zombies).

I would have thought that after the Iraq experience orchestrating another PR war frenzy in this country would be impossible. I guess even I gave Big Media too much credit.

Steve

What I find demoralizing about this episode is how the US media in lock step demonized his appearance as if it were the second coming of Hitler. The chorus today was overwhelming and, as you say, abandoned any pretense of objectivity.

Such demonizing has taken the place of and therefore seemingly precluded any critical analysis of US-Iranian policy (not that there was much to begin with in the mainstream media).

Three or so years ago, after Iraq had clearly become the ill-fated adventure it is, I at least felt assured that the Iraqi mistake would preclude any support for a US attack on Iran.

Boy, was I wrong. The media can whip up the hysteria as well as ever.

It's frightening.

Charles I

Given the Arab and Persian culture's notorious codes of etiquette etc, I was a mite boggled by the intro. But heartened by applause for the reproach to the host.

This will be all over the Iranian tv like a cheap hostage crisis. Super-President A. bearded the Infidel in its' den, taught the boorish Americans a thing or two about Persian etiquette and patiently attempted a serious intercourse with a host too lacking in culture to sustain one. Welcome to America, thanks for accepting our invitation. Sheesh!

The speech was what the President has said many times before, exact details many times ignored. It'll have as little effect as before.

Will

" On the whole I think this event was meaningless. I think that the die is cast and that this will have no effect on the international game. pl"

from Raw Story

"Although Bush "didn't tip his hand," Podhoretz says he believes that "Bush is going to hit" Iran before his term ends, The Politico reported.

"“I did say to [the president], that people ask: Why are you spending all this time negotiating sanctions? Time is passing. I said, my friend [Robert] Kagan wrote a column which he said you were giving ‘futility its chance.’ And both he (Dumbya) and Karl Rove burst out laughing," Podhoretz said. "

Podhoretz, a member of the L. Paul Bremer Medal of Freedom club, is father inlaw of Joshua Bolton.

 Kevin

Colonel Lang,

Laura Rozen has posted a copy of the Kyl-Lieberman amendment on Iran:
http://www.warandpiece.com/blogdirs/Kyl-Lieberman%20Amendment.pdf

Does this amendment in conjunction with the previously passed Authorization to Use Military Force provide Bush with all the authority he would need to launch an attack on Iran?

I'm thinking specifically of paragraph 5 on page 9 which designates the IRGC as a terrorist organization.

Mad Dogs

Regarding Ahmadinajad's visit, Cheney just loves it! Give’s him and his “Bomb Iran” buds more opportunity to fan the flames and demonize Iran.

“The Script” is already in play, but is flexible enough to welcome improv moments should any Iranian take the stage.

And the OSM (Old-Stream Media of which Nora O'Donnell is a proud member), in its role as the mighty chorus, happily blasts the airwaves with gusto:

“Bad, bad Iranians! Devils, all! They belong in Hell. Help us send them there!”

As the nuts in the A*P*C peanut gallery turn to each other, wink their eyes and applaud the loudest and say:

“Only in America! Isn’t this the greatest country or what?”

Anything, anything at all about Iran, that Cheney and his mendacious acolytes can possibly interpret in a negative way, will be so interpreted.

And funneled via all his willing mouthpieces in the Media.

One more ratchet up today. More ratchets tomorrow, and the next day, and so on.

All to the goal of further cornering the willing Dubya with that faux binary decision of: "Bomb or Appeasement".

pallen

Thank you for a very intelligent and concise review of this event, and for your conclusion. Thanks for taking the time to listen to his speech and respond to it for us.

CSTAR

Ahmadinejad and his political context in Iran in some ways reminds me of Noriega and his political context. There are clear differences though, which clearly suggest the outcome of an Iranian intervention will be wildly different from the Panama affair.

Similarities:

Unintelligent, pompous individuals (I would say verging on buffoonery) mostly very poorly advised.

A convenient focal point to rally prowar sentiment. Noriega was an unsavory character indeed, but his faults, were wildly exaggerated including accusations of bestiality.

Unwillingess to accept the fact of the relentless destructive power of american military. Regardless of the political outcome, the US military does one thing well: inflict destruction, pain and suffering.

Unpopularity within much of the middle class and virtually all the economic elite.

These similarities may lead our decision makers to miscalculate yet again on the outcome of military action.

The similarities end there: Ahmadinejad is a functionary (leader is too string a description) of a country of 70 million with a long history, a military far, far more significant, better trained, more disciplined than the piddling defense force that supported Noriega.

Strikes that do not cause significant damage in Iran, may not lead to retaliation but will certainly increase Ahmadinejad's prestige, within Iran and elsewhere. The alternative, crippling strikes will either lead to retaliation from Iran or leave widespread devastation within Iran; In that case it is not likely the US will garner much support within (what's left of ) the middle class.

There will be lots of pain and suffering to go around. And the guilt will be mostly ours.

confusedponderer

Will,
Podhoretz is father-in-law of Elliott Abrams. From what I know neither Josh Bolten nor John Bolton are in any way related with then Pod-person. Could you please clarify?

Edward Merkle

Kevin: "Does this amendment in conjunction with the previously passed Authorization to Use Military Force provide Bush with all the authority he would need to launch an attack on Iran?"

Authorization? You mean like law? Shrubs don't need no stinking laws.

Now that the regime has the media in its pocket the game is manipulation.

One of the more interesting things the boy king said about Americans, they are addicted to oil. Look to see the threat of oil shortages used to get us more entrenched into the ME quagmire.

Easy to counter though, oil is such a massive and volatile commodity.

Aseem Kumar

What is the question he should be asked?He is very correct when he questions the displacement of native palestinian after world war 2.Right now,What we want? Our boys should come back home safe from Iraq now that Saddam is gone.The question is What is this Sunni-Shia divide in Iraq?What role can Iran play to settle this.If this man is as true as he appeared yesterday he will have the answer.

Will

my bust, Elliot Abrams, not Bolton Podhoretz's relative.

Chris Matthews and Pat Buchanan again save MSNBC from being the channel of idiots

Clifford Kiracofe

Here's a scenario:

"It might be useful to imagine just how war with Iran could play out if the Iranians don't roll over and surrender at the first whiff of grapeshot......
http://www.antiwar.com/orig/giraldi.php?articleid=11666

To which I would add some Machiavelli per mercs as background:

"
I say, therefore, that the arms with which a prince defends his state are either his own, or they are mercenaries, auxiliaries, or mixed. Mercenaries and auxiliaries are useless and dangerous; and if one holds his state based on these arms, he will stand neither firm nor safe; for they are disunited, ambitious and without discipline, unfaithful, valiant before friends, cowardly before enemies; they have neither the fear of God nor fidelity to men, and destruction is deferred only so long as the attack is; for in peace one is robbed by them, and in war by the enemy. The fact is, they have no other attraction or reason for keeping the field than a trifle of stipend, which is not sufficient to make them willing to die for you. They are ready enough to be your soldiers whilst you do not make war, but if war comes they take themselves off or run from the foe; which I should have little trouble to prove, for the ruin of Italy has been caused by nothing else than by resting all her hopes for many years on mercenaries, and although they formerly made some display and appeared valiant amongst themselves, yet when the foreigners came they showed what they were. Thus it was that Charles, King of France, was allowed to seize Italy with chalk in hand;* and he who told us that our sins were the cause of it told the truth, but they were not the sins he imagined, but those which I have related. And as they were the sins of princes, it is the princes who have also suffered the penalty."
http://home.c2i.net/espenjo/home/fyrsten/prince12.htm


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