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11 October 2011

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JohnH

This appears to be an attempt by the FBI to gauge the stupidity of the American people. As it stands now, the media will swallow anything--absolutely anything--hook, line and sinker. And it looks like a huge swaths of the American people will, too.

As a result, we can look forward to a series of "terrorist" attacks, each more outrageous and implausible than the previous.

At least there is near unanimous opinion here that something smells might fishy about all this.

rjj

PL was speaking to markfrom ireland but, assuming the quotes are accurate at,

http://www.dawn.com/2011/10/12/evidence-of-iranian-plot-overwhelming-prince-turki.html

Are these statements code for [approximately]: It's ominous; it's imminent; find a scapegoat fast!!

confusedponderer

MEK sounds plausible enough, it is certainly possible. The entire story is overly complex.

What I find implausible is why the Iranians would register the aid of someone like the Mexican drug cartels? They're absolutely up to the task to do it themselves. Justin Raimondo rightly asks: Why do that, and go through all the hassle, when they can have someone they trust, and they do, who would do it for free?

It reeks of either disinformation, or a variant of the usual set-ups.

Writes Raimondo: "Instead of going out and actually, you know, looking for the Bad Guys, and then apprehending them, they lure some unsuspecting Muslim immigrant into a trap, and spring it when the time is right. The long narrative spun by the indictment tells us everything but what we really need to know, which is: how is it that these two Iranian “terrorists” just happened to meet up with a Mexican drug cartel assassin who just happened to be a longtime DEA informant?"

http://original.antiwar.com/justin/2011/10/11/iranian-terror-plot-fake-fake-fake/

He makes a good point.

Thinking of it: I recall a similar theme that floated around about, of all people, Hezbollah allegedly operating in the 'tri-border-area' in South America. Hmm.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/08/02/AR2006080201729.html

Not much came of that.

Cal

A war on Iran for Israel wouldn't play well
with the public.
And the public would see it as a war caused by the Jews.
Hence this sting to set up Iran as a "threat
to America".
So obvious.

linda

what has ahmad chalabi been up to lately -- he's kind of dropped off the radar scope...

Retired (once-Serving)Patriot

ConfusedPonderer pointed out the same article I was about to point out from Raimondo. If the best description one hears of this "plot" is that it is "straight from a Hollywood screenplay," then there should be serious doubt as to its credibility.

The best question to ask is "cui bono"? And why now?

RP

confusedponderer

Colm O' Toole,
clearly they would do all that. The reason you don't understand is because the Iranians are unfathomably evil.

Once you accept that, it all makes sense.

walrus

Greenwald once again nails it. This plot could not have been developed without FBI assistance.

http://politics.salon.com/2011/10/12/the_very_scary_iranian_terror_plot/singleton/

J

Colonel, TTG, Phil,

Take a look at this one:

Ex-CIA warns US 'dangerously wrong' on Iran
http://www.abc.net.au/news/2011-10-12/ex-cia-warns-us-dangerously-wrong-on-iran/3553704?section=world

Charlemagne

Upon further review...

1. The Iranian intelligence services appear in this case to have made an inexplicable blunder.

2. “Whenever the enemy seems to make an inexplicable blunder, one should suspect a deception” – Machiavelli.

3. If one credits F.B. Ali’s 12 Sept. analysis of the bin Laden raid, as posted on this site, then the Saudis, through the Pakistanis, engineered sanctuary for Bin Laden in Pakistan. If so, then the Saudis now stand in dire need of shoring up their bona fides as a U.S. “ally” in the war on terror and of resetting their diplomatic relationship with the U.S. The alleged Iranian plot against the Saudis– or rather, its exposure – would serve that regenerative purpose.

4. The alleged targeting of the Saudi Ambassador to the U.S. by America’s “main state enemy” in the Middle East supplies an easy, exculpatory paralogism. “The enemy of my enemy is my friend.” If Iran so abhors the U.S.-Saudi relationship that it’s willing to kill the Saudi ambassador to the U.S., then the U.S. Saudi-relationship must be worth preserving. Similarly, if the world’s main state sponsor of terrorism regards Saudi Arabia, like Israel, as a mortal enemy, then Saudi Arabia, like Israel, must be an ally in the war on terror. (Indeed, the inclusion of the Israeli embassy on the alleged target list is almost what they call in poker a “tell”).

5. If the sponsors of the alleged plot on the Saudi ambassador mounted it as a political influence operation, then these sponsors fully intended and required that the operation be detected and exposed. Such an intention of exposure would explain the otherwise mystifying blunder of sending operatives, purportedly engaged in the most sensitive state business, into a known hive of U.S. informants, viz., the Mexican drug underworld.

6. In such a deception operation, the operatives named in the indictment might have been deliberately misbriefed, liked the “doomed pilots” in World War Two. Upon capture and interrogation they would honestly convey inaccurate information.

7. One implied piece of this hypothesis does not self-evidently fit current paradigms. If the operatives named in the indictment are indeed Iranian intelligence operatives, and the operation was indeed a deception, designed to “fail,” then either (a) some entity with a pro-Saudi agenda drew Iranian intelligence into this operation under a false-flag; or (b) Iranian intelligence deliberately mounted this operation, possibly with the knowledge and sanction of the Saudis.

8. Possibility (a) seems beyond the known intelligence capabilities of the Saudis but not beyond the skill of the Israelis.

9. Possibility (b) would require positing some agenda or need shared between Iran and Saudi Arabia, countries that we are used to regarding as moral enemies. These two adversaries might have a common interest in the narrow area of bin Laden, especially if Iran served as a silent partner with Saudi elements in the quiet resettling of bin Laden in Pakistan. For instance, it is possible that Iranian intelligence provided as a cutout between Saudi Intelligence and the ISI in arranging bin Laden’s sanctuary, not only after 9/11 but before. Indeed, Iranian intelligence may have helped Saudi elements find bin Laden sanctuary ever since the bin Laden left Saudi Arabia after the First Gulf War. If so, then Iranian intelligence “owes one” to the Saudis for staying silent on Iran’s role as bin Laden’s travel agent. In this connection, it may be worth recalling that the 9/11 Commission flagged the transit of 9/11 hijackers through Iran, which did not stamp their passports, as meriting further investigation.

Mark Logan


Charlemagne, More information about the suspect, per the WaPo:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/suspect-in-alleged-iranian-terrorism-plot-had-key-connections/2011/10/11/gIQAV6rfdL_story.html

Appears to be just a demented loser, and not a particularly bright one either.

turcopolier

Mark Logan

"a demented loser" Taking that as an hypothesis, then what is the US government doing building a case for war with Iran on the basis of what a "demented loser" told them? And what about the MSM? My old friend Blitzer is busy beating the war drum and propagating the views of Peter King, a man without an interest in truth or the ability to understand it. Then we had Dylan Ratigan today who put on the egregious villain James Woolsey to spout his vitriol in the best Ziocon vein. On the same program Capehart of the WP insisted that the Iranians really were crazy enough to invite destruction with this zany scheme. This was in spite of the contrary opinion of the other two people on the panel. Capehart made reference to a meeting he had been to today on this subject. I wonder which part of the USG briefed him. pl

graywolf

All you people are too much.
"Wilderness of Mirrors", Mossad, neocons, dis-dis-information, Saudi's conspiring with the Zetas and on and on.....
You haven't blamed George Bush for this....yet.

After all, Iran is not seeking nuclear weapons, never seized an embassy, is ruled by 20th century western liberals, never acted against US troops in Iraq and is building a Trump Casino.

turcopolier

greywolf

I didn't think you were this gullible.You believe that the Iranian government directed an unsuccessful used car dealer from Corpus Christi to find a Mexican criminal gang who would assasinate the Chihuahua in DC and that they would think that this would not be traced to them? Evan Kohlmann, usually a faithful servant of the Ziocons,said on the idiot Matthew's show tonight "it makes no sense that Iran would do this because if such an event as the Chihuahua's murder had occurred, then the United States would surely have reacted militarily and they know that."

I have decided that this is not Israeli agitprop, nor is it the CIA. It is too ham handed for that. pl

confusedponderer

Speaking of ham handed, not to say outlandish, what about the MEK?

FB Ali

The absurdity of this concocted ‘terror plot’ is apparent if one reads the Manhattan US Attorney’s criminal complaint unsealed on Oct 11. A Bloomberg report in today’s SF Times contains excerpts of it at:

http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/g/a/2011/10/11/bloomberg_articlesLSXPP00D9L38.DTL

This complaint contains the ‘facts’ alleged against the two defendants, only one of whom, Arbabsiar (a used car salesman with a criminal record), is in custody. All the rest of the storm raised in the media, including the statements of high US officials, is just spin and hype.

Arbabsiar is ‘cooperating’ with the authorities, so even the ‘facts’ he testifies to could be cooked up, as could be the testimony of the main witness, a drug dealer working as a DEA informant.

One piece of hard evidence appears to be recordings of one or more phone calls made by Arbabsiar, after his arrest, to Shakuri, the other accused in Iran, alleged to be a lowly member of the al Quds Force, in which the plot was discussed.

The only other hard evidence is a transaction in which $100,000 was wired from a bank in New York, allegedly by Arbabsiar, to the informant in Mexico. Arbabsiar will presumably acknowledge this, but whether he really did it will remain an open question.

Juan Cole, in his column today, raises the hypothesis that Shakuri may be involved with Iranian drug smugglers (as a side business), and this was an Iranian drug gang initiative rather than an Iranian government one. He supports this with the following statement in the SF report:

Arbabsiar also told the informant that the same Iranian sponsors behind the assassination plot also controlled drug smuggling and could provide tons of opium, the federal law enforcement official said.

turcopolier

Furrukh

My suspicion is that this was hatched by desperate politicians. pl

J

Colonel,

This whole FBI 'tale' reminds me of a little Russian Матрешка, a whole series of little dolls within a doll.

seydlitz89

Yes, I thought "Zimmermann telegram" as well, but this time without Zimmermann . . .

linda

col lang,
i note your reference to evan kohlman. i've had msnbc on and he's certainly tempered his comments thruout the day. in an early morning appearance that included the typical iran bashing, he said this action 'cannot go unanswered'. on a later program, he started to note how out of character the plot seemed.

graywolf

Sir:
Expecting the absolute worst from a theocratic dictatorship run by lunatics is my excuse.
You discount the Israelis and the CIA; who/what do you think is the owner of this?
As for a military response, if this were true:
From this administration?
Naaah....and Iran is certainly not shaking in fear of the Great Satan".

turcopolier

greywolf

"dictatorship run by lunatics is my excuse." They do not want to die for the 'Umma tomorrow. As for the culprits, isn't the answer obvious? if it is not then I cannot tell you. pl pl

Mark Logan

Col,

Re: The "demented loser" hypothesis.

I have the same question myself. What are they trying to do by publicly implicating the leadership of Iran with no proof? And some clown in the Quds sending the guy money is NOT proof.

I will wait to hear the details of how the suspect was put in contact with the right person in the Zeta Cartel. Somebody will probably start bragging, right?

rjj

Mrs. Clinton seems to have given up long spoon use and signed the pact.

Soooo, time to give up the suspension of disbelief.

confusedponderer

"theocratic dictatorship run by lunatics "

We agree on the 'theocratic dictatorship', but that's about it.

Don't lose sleep over the Iranian Government being irrational. The Persians have been around for a few thousand years and are planning to be around for a few thousand more. They are very rational.

They only speak in a language you are unfamiliar with, in particular they like to embellish it with religious references. You get the same when listening to some of your own Christian Right folks. To re-familiarise yourself you probably only have to go to a mega church, or watch TV.

To some the Church of Rome is still the "Whore of Babylon". I recall, Reagan called the Soviet Union the "Evil Empire". Recall the even more flamboyant labels used to describe Milosevich, Saddam or Qhatafi - the US sure have their own track record of demonisation - labels like 'Great Satan' can compete with that and shouldn't surprise you.

They aren't any more a sign of insanity than the labels used by others.

Reagan was a point in case: His talk notwithstanding, he made peace with that evil empire. There's rhetoric, and then there is what people actually do.

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