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03 March 2015


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Bibi talks about Iranian aggression. Where is that aggression being played out? Is it in Iraq where Iran is the ally of the government? Is it in Syria where Iran is the ally of the government that holds a seat in the UN? Is it in Lebanon where Iran's ally Hizbullah sits in parliament? Is it in Yemen where Yemeni tribesmen belong to a kind of Shiism very different from the 12er Shiism of Iran and Iraq. There is no proof whatever that Iran controls events in Yemen through the Houthis or, even that Iran wishes to do so. pl


Numerous standing ovations; about 4 min straight at end. Congress is enthralled. Can the executive branch save the country from itself? And, if Bibi sends the jets, will America shoot them down, & from where? Or would Israel use its thermobarics/nukes from its subs? Iran has already declared that any Israeli attack means war on US; Russia would prob. back Iran; speculations?


Col. Lang,

We witnessed a prime example of PROJECTION. Netanyahu attributes motivations and impulses to others what he is guilty of.

Netanayahu and his daddy before him believed in a Greater Israel and they haven't given up on those dreams!!

Netanyahu has dismissed as “psychobabble” the question of how much his father has influenced him. But the father entertained the question in a 2009 interview with the daily Ma’ariv. “Sometimes I feel Bibi is influenced from a very small age, and sometimes I don’t. We don’t have the same opinions always.”

Q: And still, how much do you think you’ve influenced his opinions today?

A: “I have a general idea. Bibi might aim for the same goals as mine, but he keeps to himself the ways to achieve them, because if he expressed them, he would expose his goals.”

Q: Is that what you wish?

A: No, I just believe that it could be so. Because he is smart. Because he is very careful. Because he has his ways to handle himself. I am talking about tactics regarding the revealing of theories that people with different ideology might not accept. That’s why he doesn’t expose them: because of the reaction from his enemies as well as from the people whose support he seeks. It’s an assumption, but it might be so.


Ted B

McCarthyism stoked the Cold War for 50 years (and still counting); add Moslem Terrorism for the next 50.

William R. Cumming

I think in both the immediate and long run this speech will be viewed as a turning point in US/Israel relationships and not towards improvement in that relationship.

The US is not historically a very trustworthy FP partner!
But not because we coldly calculate the interests short and long term of our nation but because of poor leadership, naivete, cultural and language ignorance of others, and corruption of our democratic process.

This speech was a blatant corruption of our democratic process IMO!

Ted B

Ted, wouldn't it be "easier" (ie cork-up Bibi/Israel) for Russia to sell/lease/give Iran a handful of nuclear whatevers...get on with the oil business?

robt willmann

Somewhat on topic since the person involved had a role in the disastrous U.S. policy in Iraq, the news flash is that David Petraeus has agreed to plead to a misdemeanor federal criminal charge in federal court in the Western District of North Carolina, at Charlotte. The charging document, plea agreement, and factual basis for the plea are here, and the clerk of the court combined them into one pdf document--


An "information" is the paper that charges someone with a misdemeanor and an "indictment" charges a felony. In the federal system, a misdemeanor is an offense that has a possible sentence of no more than one year. An information can therefore be filed without going through the grand jury. An information can be used to charge a felony if the defendant in open court waives prosecution by an indictment.

The charge is Title 18, United States Code, section 1924--


The plea agreement is very boilerplate. One item of interest is on page 2 of the agreement (pdf p. 4), regarding the sentence. You can see that the government and Petraeus have agreed to sentencing under Federal Rule of Criminal Procedure 11(c)(1)(B). Under that part, the government will recommend or not oppose a particular sentence or sentencing range, but it is not binding on the court. The ideal agreement, which is not common in federal court but which is used in almost all plea agreements in State court (at least in Texas), is for a specific sentence. That is possible under federal rule 11(c)(1)(C), and the deal is binding if the judge accepts the plea agreement. You can see the language here--


As a practical matter, a plea agreement under rule 11(c)(1)(B), especially if it is for a particular sentence and not for a "sentencing range" or "cap", is kind of a wink and a nudge that the parties are really agreeing on a specific sentence.

Back on 9 January 2015, Col. Lang had a post on the Petraeus matter when the NY Times newspaper had a story on it. I made a comment that the story left out the matter of Paula Broadwell entirely. And she does not appear in the "factual basis" document for this plea. Verrry interrresting--


I also mentioned that, in my opinion, what was really going on was a political takedown of two high-level people, David Petraeus and Marine General John Allen. This was a significant event with zero media coverage of that aspect of it. The technique used, of course, were the situations with Paula Broadwell and Jill Kelley, respectively. I further thought, and still do, that the way the case was developed was through the fraudulent method of "parallel construction", in which evidence is gathered illegally and used to develop a case, but what is revealed to the prosecutors, defense lawyers, and courts is a manufactured and make-believe starting point of the investigation, which is entirely different, to create the false impression that the process was "legal".

At the time the journalist and writer Michael Hastings was murdered, he was said to be working on a story about Jill Kelley.

This situation and plea deal with Petraeus obviously demonstrates the difference between the way he was approached by the executive branch and prosecution, and what was faced by Jeffrey Sterling, John Kiriakou, Thomas Drake, William Binney, and others.

Charles I

Re This speech was a blatant corruption of our democratic process.

Imho it is the poisoned fruit an already long-corrupted vineyard.


Ted, I believe there have been proposals in the past for the Russians to build the Iranians a Chernobyl style reactor (and in Cuba as well). Given the the results of Chernobyl, that was not a bright nor viable idea.

robt willmann

As a little clarification...yes, the document with the factual basis in the Petraeus plea does talk about his "biographer", and mentions the title of the book, so it is easy to figure out that the biographer is Broadwell. But my point is that she was completely left out of the NY Times article, and from the sanitized language in the plea papers, the impression is left that there has been no real consideration about whether or not she may have legal liability in this situation as well.

different clue

I heard on the news that about 50 or so Dparty officeholders boycotted the speech. If so, that is quite a few given the fear of political career-ending enforcement.

Has someone already drawn up a list of the boycotting 50? They will all be targeted by Adelman and by others between now and next election. What could/would an Anti Adelson Public Affairs Committee be able to do to protect these officeholders and assist them in defeating any primary challenger and then any well funded opponent?

The Beaver

Charles l

John Baird , the private citizen was at AIPAC yesterday and was thanked by Bibi. Wonder whether he was invited today to attend his speech on the Hill. It looks like they planned his speech like a SOU when the President invites guests to attend.


All: The Conservative British newspaper The Daily Telegraph have a good digest headlined "Netanyahu throws caution to the winds with all-out assault on Obama's Iran policy"

"David Blair provides a line by line analysis of the Israeli prime minister's momentous address to Congress, which broke all the rules of etiquette between world leaders "

Link to full article: http://tinyurl.com/l2m2w6y


At no point did Bibi say that there was no military option. IMO Bibi's plan is to start a war with Iran that he cannot win and then use his propaganda apparatus here and the Kiwannis club alumni called the House of Representatives to force the US into the war as well while the Israelis stand back and watch. pl

Charles I

did you read about how cozy Mr Baird was with the Chinese Amb to Canada, it was kinda scary. I'm trying to find it now.


@ Dubhaltach -

Thanks for the link to Blair's analysis of that despicable theatrical performance by Netanyahu. My thoughts about the speech are mostly unprintable , but I think Nancy Pelosi's statement about that grotesque performance pretty much covers my thoughts and emotions:

>> “That is why, as one who values the U.S. – Israel relationship, and loves Israel, I was near tears throughout the Prime Minister’s speech – saddened by the insult to the intelligence of the United States as part of the P5 +1 nations, and saddened by the condescension toward our knowledge of the threat posed by Iran and our broader commitment to preventing nuclear proliferation."<<

Netanyahu played our government leaders like snake-oil salesmen throughout the ages -- a truly depressing response by our Congress -- with a few exceptions.

Thank you Ms Pelosi

BTW -- My touchstone for Israeli affairs is Uri Avnery who publishes every Saturday in his Gush-Shalom.org column which is always reposted in Saturday's Counterpunch. His post last Saturday was a pretty major takedown of Netanyahu and the upcoming speech in the USA.


The title was: An Expensive Speech

Charles I


Read this its sickening


Norm Coleman had a prominent place with the Bibi group in the guest gallery. Not bad for a Saudi lobbyist...


The April 1986 disaster at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant in Ukraine was the product of a flawed Soviet reactor design coupled with serious mistakes made by the plant operators. It was a direct consequence of Cold War isolation and the resulting lack of any safety culture.


The Guardian has an annotated version of Netanyahu's speech; the annotations are written by 3 of their foreign correspondents:

ex-PFC Chuck

Your post reminds me of Chiang& Soong during WWII. Stilwell was constantly trying to get the Chinese Nationalists to fight the Japanese instead of other war lords or Mao, and whenever he and Marshall would get FDR's agreement for some serious arm-twisting Chiang would cable Soong in DC. Damn near every protestant church in America, and many Catholic ones as well, were sponsoring missionaries there, and allies like Henry Luce of Time-Life and Rep. Walter Judd could be counted on to crank up the network. Within hours the White House switchboard would light up with calls from church ladies and preachers all over the country and FDR would pass the word for Stilwell to back off. And the general would fume in his diary that "The Peanut" won again.



Has perceived partisan and domestic political benefits trumped US national interests? Why do these people who purport to represent the American people seek power?

It's shameful that our country has been reduced to being the armed force of another nation who use us with contempt. What surprises me is that there was hardly any opposition to Bibi undermining the foreign policy objectives of a sitting President.

The Beaver

Yes, saw a snippet of Mulroney's book in the G&M.


There was a glitch somehow in the last part of my post in reply to Dubhaltach !!

I don't know what happened (the last part got dropped), but it should have read something like: My main source for "realistic" info from Israel is from Uri Avnery who posts a weekly column in gush-shalom.org on Saturdays and it is re-posted in Counterpunch on Saturday. Last weeks article was entitled "an Expensive speech" and the key bit was at the very end:

quote >>President Obama, who is being insulted, humiliated and obstructed in his most cherished policy move, the agreement with Iran, would be superhuman if he did not brood on revenge. Even a movement of his little finger could hurt Israel grievously.

Does Netanyahu care? Of course he cares. But he cares more about his reelection.

Much, much more.<< unquote

link is: http://www.avnery-news.co.il/english/

and the title/date is "An Expensive Speech"


Netanyahu is a loose-cannon to put it mildly!! And Avnery's take on the situation is very much in tune with Col PL's post below at 03 March 2015 at 06:44 PM. Bibi has absolutely NO respect for the United States of America.

SAC Brat

Good catch. I'm surprised the Republicans aren't beating on the current administration for loosing China and being asleep on Pearl Harbor.

Hard to imagine that Conservatives used to be for Isolationism and a small military. Maybe those positions didn't pay well...

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