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10 August 2015


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The AP article linked above was remarkably for its wording:

"The head of the U.N's International Atomic Energy Agency said Wednesday that he cannot give Congress a copy of the organiation's nuclear inspection document with Iran despite harsh criticism from Republican senators."

Reading that one may think that Amano is one sleazy international bureaucrat who keeps secrets from alarmed and vigilant elected US representatives.

The phrasing suggests that the Congress people had a right to be given by Amano what they asked for, and then, that Amano had a choice to disclose. Neither was the case.

But why let that interfere with an editorial line?


"Meanwhile in Israel, the sabres keep rattering. Israel's defence minister Moshe Ya'alon stuck to the line that, lack of evidence notwithstanding, Iran's nuclear program is a military one. He suggested a direction which Israel could take, saying

"I'm not responsible for the lives of Iranian scientists."
Jason Ditz comments that

"Though Ya’alon did not dispute the assessment by Israeli intelligence agencies that Iran isn’t working on nuclear weapons, he talked up the idea of threatening to attack Iran if they don’t dismantle their civilian program, saying Iran should view complete abandonment of nuclear technology as a matter of survival.""

For me, the above quote is the most important part of your post and confirmation that Israel intends the pastoralization of all possible competitors. pl


Yes, the Israeli demand for 'complete abandonment of nuclear technology' is indeed so excessive and overreaching that it leaves not much room for a different conclusion.

Babak Makkinejad

They are welcome to ignite the millennial wrath of Shia and Iran against themselves.

Babak Makkinejad

Two of the 4 murdered Iranian scientists had attended SERAME scientific meeting in Jordan:



Typo alert: The Israeli Defense minister is Moshe Ya'alon, not Danny Ayalon.

Babak Makkinejad


The opposition that you pose between IAEA and US Congress is artificial.

IAEA was another international agency which was abused by the United States and her allies, Russia, and China.

Furthermore, the position of the United States - for the longest time, was that there should be never be any nuclear technology in Iran - civilian and otherwise. There was no difference in that regard with Israel's position.

To wit, she told the Ukrainians not to ship the completed containment vessel for Busher I to Iran - with which they promptly complied, without receiving any compensation. Likewise with the Chinese and the UCF factory - with which the Chinese complied but not before giving the blue prints to Iranians who then proceeded to build it.

The most you can say is that US Congress has not yet had the time to digest the change in the direction of the wind.

In my view, Iran was pushed too far both during Iran-Iraq War and during the confrontation over NPT. The first war - like World War I - created a profound distance between Iran and non-Shia Arabs, the second one between NATO states and Iran.

Both these fissures will persist for the coming years and decades - in my opinion.


Thank you, I corrected that.


BM: There are many former Shahists in Los Angeles who would be happy to lead a subservient, Uganda-like Iran.


re "The opposition that you pose between IAEA and US Congress is artificial" it's for one tongue in cheek, in tune with the threatric play performed at Congress, but then it is for real, if somewhat more subtle.

Amano is America's man at the IAEA.


That beholdenness is ironically for the better these days that he is more beholden to the US administration than to Israel or their American surrogates and volunteers. Some good may come of this after all.

What was on display here was at once a show for the American public, meant to frame the 'bad deal', 'dangerous secrets' narrative, and an illustration to which extent the opponents of the deal have been deliberately cut out. So they howl at the door and perform their highly ritualised american Kabuki.

Cutting these folks out was probably rather sensible. Given their unrelenting hostility they would have only spoiled and obsctructed negotiations even more than they already have.

The R's IMO probably couldn't care less about the actual foreign policy aspects of the deal, they want to score points against Obama out of sheer opportunism. They like Adelson's money, too.

The Likudniks on the other hand, oppose any deal as a matter of course, as British foreign secretary Hammond has pointed out when he said in Parliament:

"The question you have to ask yourself is what kind of a deal would have been welcomed in Tel Aviv? The answer, of course, is that Israel doesn’t want any deal with Iran. Israel wants a permanent state of stand-off and I don’t believe that’s in the interest of the region, I don’t believe it’s in our interest"


Hammond is right, and I believe he is putting it mildly when he says 'permanent standoff'.

It is indeed more along the lines of what Pat calls 'pastoralisation', or as David Wurmser put it in his advisory paper for Bibi Netanyahu 'Coping with Crumbling States':

"The issue here is whether the West and Israel can construct a strategy for limiting and expediting the chaotic collapse that will ensue in order to move on to the task of creating a better circumstance"


Babak Makkinejad

I had a long discussion on this forum back in 2012 with LeAnder and others on the US policy under Obama which was leading to war with Iran.

I maintained then and I maintain now - one cannot blame everything on Israelis - which is a reprise of escape-goat-ing the Jews.

I mean, Germany can transfer 2000 tanks to Iraq to help fight ISIS, France can rent Iraq - in an analogous manner to what she was doing during Iran-Iraq War - 500 Rafael airplanes to fight ISIS.

Neither Germany nor France nor UK nor anyone else is willing to do so.

I guess they like the current situation.

The interests of the region would best be served to accept the following 2 offer:

- One from HAMAS for a 99-year long ceasefire with Israel
- the other one from Iran for the partition of the Middle East into the Iranian sphere and the West-Israel-Arab sphere (non-Seljuks).

I personally am not optimistic that either offer will be accepted because of the widely held expectation among the ruling circles in US, Israel, EU, Saudi Arabia etc. that "by God we ought to prevail and prevail decisively given our strategic preponderance."

I suppose when ISIS has destroyed the Pakistani state there could be second-thoughts on them but not until then.

Eric Dönges

No, Germany cannot transfer 2000 tanks to Iraq - we don't have that many. We don't have that many even if you count IFVs and APCs as tanks.

And even if we did, I fail to see why Germany should be held responsible for cleaning up the mess in Iraq. We did not take part in the dismantling of the Iraqi state. It's one of the few decisions of the Schröder administration I totally agreed with. If it is anybody's responsibility, it is that of the "freedom fries" people and their coalition of the willing.

The Porkchop Express

Everything in American news about Iran sounds like one long Onion article.

"...we recognize that it’s inevitable that certain contentious topics will come up from time to time, and when they do, we want to create an atmosphere where both students and faculty feel comfortable voicing a single homogeneous opinion."


Babak Makkinejad

I was trying to demonstrate that EU prefers to have ISIS as a going concern.

You are quite right, why should Germany pay out of her own pocket to help fight ISIS; may be France should pay Germany to build tanks and give them to Iraq - in lieu of ashes and sac cloth.

[Or Sweden, or Spain, or UK, or Denmark]

Swami Bhut Jolokia

How dare international organizations not toe the line drawn by Congress?

Why, the next thing you know they'll be flying black helicopters within the Homeland and suppressing our god-given Freedom and Liberty!



Transfer tanks? Much of the equipment we gave the New Model Iraqi Army has already found its way to ISIS. Why arm them further.

The Beaver


However, the social worker has told the US Senators what she has seen so far:

[Undersecretary of State Wendy Sherman said the U.S. does not have the paperwork, but she offered to tell senators in a classified briefing later in the day what she knows about the separate document between Iran and nuclear inspectors that is part of the nuclear accord negotiated with Tehran.

"I did see the provisional documents," she said. "I didn't see the final documents."]



Hopefully, constantly screaming "anti-Semitism" is evidence that the Likud and its fellow travelers know they are losing.

See http://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2015/08/iran-israel-obama-kerry-jews/400895/


Col: So much for the Jim Webb candidacy. See http://cnsnews.com/news/article/patrick-goodenough/democrat-jim-webb-opposes-iran-deal-we-need-put-country-ahead-party


Col et All.

There is an ongoing push among frightened Israelis who are becoming more and more concerned about the direction of their country and, the increasing danger of bibi"s "leadership" on issues dealing with the Iran deal and Israel's security. Those worried souls also included men of high rank who have and are serving in all branches of Israel's security services.

It turns out the bibi's political apparatus is actively suppressing the professional voices who are in firm support of the deal w/Iran and appalled at the dire state of non-communication between the American and Israeli political branches. This article and linked interview point the way; it's been striking how desperate some Israelis are to get this message out to, basically, we the people and those who purport to represent us:

(I saw one claim that respective mil-to-mil and intel-to-intel lines of communication are intact. I have long thought that the distaff Israeli voices from the security services were having an affect on US policy in regards to removing Assad and Iran. The firmness of Obama in the face of the clamorous calls for kinetic actions to change regimes suggests that perhaps the opinions of Israel's most experienced security pros have stiffened spines more than could usually be expected when under full assault by the Borgistas.)

If only.....some patriot with deep pockets could swamp the airwaves with ads featuring the true opinions of those men who have devoted their lives to Israel's security. Shame the Americans who should know better than to be enlisted in a campaign that will endanger the land and people that they supposedly.....Luv.

William R. Cumming

Respectfully disagree!

William R. Cumming

Agree! And Russia has agreed to fund, build, and operate 10 new nuclear power reactors in Iran for next 25 years.

Babak Makkinejad

In Israel, in US, in UK, in France, in Germany, in Spain, in Canada, in Australia, in Denmark, in Sweden and other places the governments are pursuing policies that the electorates in each country wants to be pursued.

One cannot expect the respective militaries to intervene when the electorate choses to follow this or that hare-brained policy by voting for those who advocate it.

I mean, then what would happen to "Democracy"?


"In Israel, in US, in UK, in France, in Germany, in Spain, in Canada, in Australia, in Denmark, in Sweden and other places the governments are pursuing policies that the electorates in each country wants to be pursued"

You have said that a couple times, and it is IMO dubious on several levels.

For one, I can't say I particularly like that argument because of where it leads to if thought to the end with full consequence.

In essence Bin Laden argued along these lines when he had his goons attack the US on 9/11 - the American empowered their government to pursue the policies they wanted to be pursued, so they were fair game. He took the intellectually consequent step and went from the idea of assumed collective responsibility to collective punishment.

Secondly, beyond this general thrust of the argument, it is IMO questionable whether the concept of collective responsibility is fairly applied here.

In stating that after all electorates have empowerd the governments to the policies towards Iran that you object to, through indirect legitimcay invested in those we directly elect, you simply formulate a truism.

Foreign policy in the UK, France, in Germany, in Spain, in Canada, in Australia, in Denmark, in Sweden actually quite ralrely is up for vote. The US and Israel are absolute exceptions in that there unrelenting hostility towards Iran indeed has been made a domestic political issue. It isn't here. In Germany nobody ever had me vote on sanctions on Iran.

Usually, foreign policy is the product of the inner workings in the bowels of each country's executive branch, with some degree of parliamentarian involvement. Foreign policy, as a rule, in Europe is up for vote only in exceptional circumstances.

In that light, the idea that the governments you listed are pursuing policies that the electorates in each country wants to be pursued, doesn't hold up.

To a significant extent, the electorate doesn't notice and usually just doesn't care. People who are ignorant about foreign policy, and left out of the decision making anyway, don't "want to" implement these policies. They are, more often than not, mere bystanders.

Your argument also ignores the extent to which elite consensus is being created and populations are being propagandised. A considerable success (that Fred82 never heard of) of US foreign policy and the work of a lot of dipolomatic effort vis a vis Old Europe under Bush 43 was to change the European consensus to seeing Iran as a threat. They did so through relentless propaganda and lobbying.

If the electorates are being told and believe that Iran is a threat, then sanctions and hostility become in fact an almost reasonable reaction.

The problem that Iran is not a threat and that the threat perception is the result of a distortion of facts. Are people who make misinfirmed decisions after having been fed manure as fact still, as you suggest, collective responsible or culpable for its ill effects, because they have cast a vote in the last election?

Babak Makkinejad

I understand your argument but I ask you again: "Where is the electorate?"

You are saying that the electorate is ignorant.

So if the world goes up in smoke tomorrow - per the usual fear of World War III, will you be saying that the electorate had nothing to do with it?

That the electorate in UK, France, Israel etc. had no responsibility - nothing - for that?

If you are arguing thus you are essentially saying - in my opinion - that this thing called "Democracy" is for the Peasants - they are left to decide who and how and when to take the manure out for the stables of the Nobles and distribute it in the fields - while the Nobles would be initiating this or that war against this or that Dukedom or County for Fun and Profit.

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