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Offline bigron

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Re: CNN, C-SPAN, BBC, FOX, FRANCE: The war in Iran is on!!!!!!
« Reply #200 on: October 17, 2007, 08:27:19 am »
Giuliani, McCain: U.S. should prepare to use force against Iran 
 
By The Associated Press
http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/913507.html
 
Republican presidential candidates Rudy Giuliani and Sen. John McCain
said Tuesday they would be prepared as president to use military force against Iran to prevent it from getting nuclear weapons.

Giuliani characterized Iran as a state sponsor of terror that is seeking nuclear weapons and said Tehran needs to understand how the United States would respond to that development.
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"Anybody who wants to be president of the United States would say a prayer at the beginning that you would never have to use American military power," the former New York City mayor said. "But as president, you can't hesitate to do that, if it's in the best interest of the United States."

"You have to stand up to dictators and tyrants and terrorists," he added. "Weakness invites attack. Strength keeps you safe."

On Iran specifically, Giuliani said, "We've seen what Iran will do with ordinary weapons. If I'm president, I guarantee you we will never find out what they would do with nuclear weapons because they're not going to get them."

Said McCain, "At the end of the day, we cannot allow the Iranians to acquire nuclear weapons."

The presidential candidates spoke to the Republican Jewish Coalition.

Last week, Giuliani reiterated during a presidential debate his stance in favor of a military option against a nuclear Iran.

On another subject, Giuliani said he would not negotiate with the Palestinians on the situation in the Middle East until two conditions are met: acknowledgment of Israel's right to exist as a Jewish state and a good-faith effort to stop terror.

"If they do those two things and mean it, then of course we can negotiate," Giuliani said. "We would like to have peace. But we don't want to have a peace in which we are taken advantage of. We don't want to have a peace in which Americans and Israelis are getting killed. And we certainly don't want to create another terrorist-supporting state. We
have too many of them already."


Related articles:


The Israel Factor: Think how McCain's position on Iran fared better than Giuliani's

http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/pages/ShArt.jhtml?itemNo=913439

Think tank: Israel could attack Iran's nuclear program alone

http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/808677.html

Rosner's blog: Romney's position on attacking Iran? Better ask his lawyers

http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/pages/rosnerBlog.jhtml?itemNo=911160&contrassID=25&subContrassID=0&sbSubContrassID=1&listSrc=Y&art=4#article911160
 
 
 
 

Offline bigron

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Re: CNN, C-SPAN, BBC, FOX, FRANCE: The war in Iran is on!!!!!!
« Reply #201 on: October 18, 2007, 08:10:11 am »
Putin sides with Iran on nuclear question
Tehran's neighbors warned against foreign collaboration

By Borzou Daragahi, Los Angeles Times
Inside Bay Area
http://www.insidebayarea.com/news/ci_7201857
Article Last Updated:10/17/2007 08:57:41 AM PDT
 
TEHRAN, Iran — Russian President Vladimir Putin, appearing side by side with his Iranian counterpart at a five-nation summit here Tuesday, made a powerful show of support for America's regional arch-enemy, drawing the line against any attack on Iran and reaffirming Iran's right to civilian nuclear use.
At the same time, Putin stopped short of unconditional support of the Iranian regime, although the tenor of his remarks appeared at odds with earlier suggestions from the Bush administration that Putin might take a more pro-Western stance.

Days after publicly dismissing U.S. plans for a missile defense system, Putin arrived in the Iranian capital in a painstakingly scrutinized visit that was the first here by a Kremlin leader since Josef Stalin mapped out World War II strategy with Franklin D. Roosevelt and Winston Churchill in 1943.

Putin told reporters that Tehran had the right to continued civilian nuclear enrichment.

"Russia is the only country that has assisted Iran in implementing its peaceful nuclear program," Putin said. "We believe all countries have the right to a peaceful nuclear energy program."

The Russian president also warned the other Caspian Sea nations present not to allow their countries to be used for military assaults against Iran, a clear message to the U.S., which has refused to rule out an attack to halt or slow the Iranian nuclear program it believes is ultimately aimed at building nuclear weapons.

"We are saying that no Caspian nation should offer its territory to third powers for use of force or military aggression against any Caspian state," Putin told reporters.

The U.S. maintains strong military ties with the Caspian Sea nation of Azerbaijan, and has been wooing Turkmenistan and Kazakhstan for flyover privileges and intelligence sharing.

The three nations, all formerly part of the Soviet Union, retain authoritarian leadership and have become political battlegrounds between the U.S. and Russia.

Bush administration officials disclaimed any disappointment in Putin's visit to Tehran or his comments, but face a growing challenge in dealing with Putin's maverick, frequently anti-U.S. public statements.

Tom Casey, a State Department spokesman, said the U.S. did not object to Putin's appearance with Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, and said the administration still believes Moscow agrees with U.S. and European aims on Iran's nuclear program.

"The Russian government position on this hasn't changed," Casey said. "I don't think the Russian government has been, in any way, shape or form, trying to encourage Iran's nuclear developments. In fact, they've been very concerned about it."

However, senior U.S. officials earlier had expressed optimism that the Russian president would demonstrate greater public cooperation with American and Western European goals on Iran. The U.S. officials included Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates, who met with Putin in Moscow on Friday.

Tight security was the watchword for the summit here, with black-clad Iranian security forces gripping submachine guns lining the upscale streets near the Sadabad Palace, a 19th century compound in north Tehran.

Putin came ostensibly to discuss energy, security and environmental policy with his regional counterparts, and international analysts say he would have attended the summit regardless of the heightened international tensions over Iran's nuclear program.

But the image of Putin smiling in appearances with Ahmadinejad as well as the leaders of three other nations, served to highlight the dramatic differences between the Russian and American relationships with Iran, which Washington views as its principal adversary in the region and Moscow considers a valuable ally and trading partner.

"In case you haven't noticed, Russia doesn't have a lot of friends," said Dimitri K. Simes, president of the Nixon Center, a Washington think-tank, and an expert on Russia . "Putin is looking for friends and strategic alliances where he can find them."

The U.S. and Western European powers believe Iran is cloaking an effort to build nuclear weapons, while Tehran insists it is only seeking to produce energy for civilian use. The U.S. and France hope to slap Iran with a third round of international sanctions, which Russia and China oppose.

Russia and China appear more willing than the U.S. to tolerate Iran enriching its own uranium as long as it clears up lingering doubts about the peaceful intent of its past nuclear research. To the longstanding dismay of the U.S., Russia is also building a light-water nuclear power plant in the southern Iranian city of Bushehr and annually conducts $2 billion in trade with Iran.

Despite Putin's rhetorical support, analysts say Moscow harbors misgivings about Iran. The Kremlin deplores Ahmadinejad's belligerent talk, including his questioning of the Holocaust and the country's defiant tone on its nuclear program. It fears its association with Iran could damage its carefully cultivated relations with Israel and Europe, especially Germany.

While he condemned any possible U.S. attack, Putin did not vow to stand up for Iran in case of one.

And although the Russian president's presence at the summit might have lowered the Iranian government's sense of isolation, Putin left Tehran without granting Iran any of the concessions it had hoped for, including a timetable for the completion of the Russian-built nuclear plant in Bushehr or a deal on divvying up Caspian Sea energy reserves.

Putin's visit also signaled Russia's claim to a large share of the oil and gas-rich Caspian basin, believed to hold the world's third-largest energy reserves. Russia and Iran are united in opposition to U.S. plans for building pipelines that draw petroleum and natural gas out of the region without passing through either country.

Although Iran borders less than 15 percent of the Caspian, it insists on a fifth of its resources, a demand the other countries reject.

Special correspondent Ramin Mostaghim in Tehran and Times staff writers Peter Spiegel in Washington and David Holley in Moscow contributed to this report.
 

Offline bigron

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Re: CNN, C-SPAN, BBC, FOX, FRANCE: The war in Iran is on!!!!!!
« Reply #202 on: October 18, 2007, 08:15:54 am »
Russians Will Finish Iranian Nuclear Power Plant – Putin Promises To Help Defend Iran From Attack From The West
 
Submitted by Dan Wilson on October 16, 2007 - 5:26pm. 
http://bestsyndication.com/?q=101607_russia_to_help_iran_build_nukes_and_protect_from_west.htm
 
 
(Best Syndication)
 Russian President Vladimir Putin promised to help the Iranians complete their nuclear reactor at Bushehr and to help protect the country from an attack by the west. Russia has many economic ties to the Persian country, including the contract for a nuclear power plant. The London Times reports that in a private meeting after the Summit of Caspian Nations, Putin promised to “assist Iran’s peaceful nuclear program”.

Tony Halpin in Moscow reports that Russia is building Iran’s first atomic power plant in the port city of Bushehr. Although Russia has delayed the delivery of nuclear fuel because of a delay in payments by Iran, Russian media reports that Moscow had promised to complete the work on schedule.

The Russian news agency Ria reports that the original contract goes back to 1995. The Russians complained that Tehran had only paid 60% of the required funds for the fourth quarter of 2006 and completely stopped payments in mid-January.

Putin says that the delays can be traced back to certain technical and legal problems from a 1975 construction contract between Iran and Germany. Ria does not specify whether the agreement was made between East or West Germany, but claims the contract was never implemented.

"At the start of the construction we received German equipment, which is obviously outdated," Putin said. He went on to say that some other subcontractors, including South Korea, failed to provide equipment under relevant contracts with Iran.

Putin said that these problems are cleared up now, and construction can move forward. "In addition, there are certain legal provisions in the [Russian-Iranian] contract that have to be revised and amended," the president said

Offline bigron

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Re: CNN, C-SPAN, BBC, FOX, FRANCE: The war in Iran is on!!!!!!
« Reply #203 on: October 18, 2007, 08:19:33 am »
http://www.atimes.com      
 
 Caspian summit a triumph for Iran

By Kaveh L Afrasiabi

Few regional summits have drawn closer attention, by both the media and world governments, than this week's summit of leaders of Caspian littoral states in Tehran.

The two day summit, coinciding with twin nuclear crises and escalating US-Iran tensions relating to Iraq and the Middle East, is bound to be regarded as a milestone in regional cooperation, with serious ramifications for a broad array of issues transcending the Caspian Sea region.

Billed as a "great leap toward progress" by Mehdi Safari, Iran's



Deputy Foreign Minister in charge of Iran's Caspian affairs, the summit has been a great success for Iran as well as Russia and the other participants (Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan), and Tehran is likely to capitalize on it as a stepping stone for full membership of the Shanghai Cooperation  Organization (SCO), considered a security counterweight to NATO and US "hegemony".

Indeed, it is as much shared interests as common worries and concerns, eg, the US's unbounded interventionist policies, that have now brought Iran and Russia closer together and to the verge of a new strategic relationship. After all, both Iran and Russia are today objects of American coercion, their national security interests and objectives imperiled by the US's post-9/11 militarism and its feudalistic ossification of the international order.

The upshot of the Caspian summit is, in fact, a prominent message about the need to democratize the international order by erecting effective barriers to the American "leviathan", as shown by specific agreements reached at the summit, including prohibiting other countries from using the littoral states for attacks on one another "under any circumstances'', and disallowing any ship not flying the national flag of a littoral state on Caspian waters.

How did this summit come about? The answer is, first and foremost, by astute diplomatic efforts on Iran's part and, equally, by a strategic evolution of Russia's foreign policy that is no longer self-handicapped by prioritizing tactical or conjunctural interests above strategic ones.

Having reached this level, Moscow is now poised to enter into a new strategic relationship with Iran that will serve the geostrategic, security, and other shared interests of both nations.

"Iran is an important regional and global power," President Vladimir Putin said after his initial meeting with Iran's President Mahmud Ahmadinejad, who has been much vilified in the West and yet is respected in the Third World and beyond as an assertive leader of a developing nation standing up to world-domineering policies.

A major achievement for Iran's diplomacy and particularly for Amadinejad's embattled foreign policy team, the "good news" summit will likely serve as the hinge that opens new breathing space for Iran's diplomacy, and not just toward the Caspian, the Caucasus, and Central Asia. Iran's Persian Gulf policy is also bound to benefit from the improved image of Iran in the Middle East, making more attractive Iran's role as a corridor to Central Asia which the Arab world in general and the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) states in particular can take advantage of in their external trade and energy policies.

Iran's summit diplomacy
The most salient feature of Iran's summit diplomacy has been its multifaceted complexity, seeking to enhance regional cooperation among the five Caspian littoral states by, for instance, initiating the idea of a Caspian regional organization to promote inter-region trade, and, simultaneously, pushing bilateral cooperation alongside multilateral cooperation. The net of bilateral and multilateral agreements signed at this summit is quite extensive and a detailed examination belongs elsewhere.

Suffice to say, however, that from Iran's vantage point the summit has been a complete turnaround from the rather disastrous Caspian Sea summit of leaders in Ashghabat, Turkmenistan, in 2002, when Putin prioritized the issue of Caspian delimitation and division, a divisive issue. In comparison, at this summit, the thorny subject of Caspian ownership and "legal regime" was relegated to the background, with the attending leaders focusing on areas of shared interests, transboundry issues, and trade, hoping that in subsequent meetings the goodwill generated at this summit will carry over to those more divisive issues.

Various expert-level meetings of the Caspian states have so far failed to resolve the ownership question and, from Iran's vantage point, given the relatively minor energy interests at stake in Iran's sector of the Caspian Sea, it made more sense to draw the right lesson from the Ashghabat failure and adopt a long-term view of things.

That approach by Iran has paid off handsomely, resulting in a sudden shift in the geostrategic climate in Iran's favor, in light of the joint communique of the other Caspian states regarding their refusal to allow their territory to be used for any militiary aggression against Iran, cemented by Putin's forceful statement against any such gambit.

Putin's other comment, regarding Russia's commitment to complete Iran's Bushehr nuclear power plant, represents yet another significant development for Iran, which has defied the UN Security Council's resolutions calling for a suspension of uranium enrichment and reprocessing activities. By stating on record that there is no evidence to support the allegations of a nuclear weapon ambition on Iran's part, Putin looks to have provoked Washington's fury, as seen in Condoleezza Rice's instant counterpunch that Iran has been "lying" about its nuclear program. Yet more importantly Putin has signalled the beginning of the end of Rice-crafted "diplomatic consensus" vis-a-vis Iran.

As expected, the US government and mainstream media, unable to show any signs of adjustment to Russia's, and even China's, new line of thought toward Iran, have stepped up their Iran-bashing, with both the Washington Times and Wall Street Journal dedicating more of their opinion pages to the ritual anti-Iran commentaries.

Surely, the Tehran summit and its results represent a serious setback for Washington's Iran diplomacy, but they also show the defects of its Russia diplomacy and the fact that Moscow and Washington have reached a dead end. Putin has held his ground against his Washington detractors, wooing various European leaders such as Germany's Angela Merkel and snubbing the pro-US Nicolas Sarkozy, while working on a new model of Russia-EU relations that is not dominated by US prerogatives. There is undoubtedly an element of risk here and Putin's new Iran policy may backfire, particularly if he does not generate more Iranian cooperation on the nuclear issue.

Regarding the latter, Iran is apt to reciprocate Putin's gestures by accommodating itself to more IAEA demands, and next week's meeting of Iran's chief nuclear negotiator, Ali Larijani, with the EU's foreign policy chief, Javier Solana, is an important occasion for Iran to appease Putin and his foreign policy circle, some of whom are openly worried about a parallel corrosion of US-Russia relations because of the new Iran-Russia developments.

Yet this is not a "zero-sum game" and US policy makers can draw the right impression about Iran's good neighborly policies benefiting regional and global peace, presently deepened in part thanks to Russia's singular influence on Iran. That is highly unlikely, however, and the continuation of the one-dimensional coercive policy toward Iran, so deeply entrenched in Washington, is the more likely scenario, no matter how out of sync with the rest of the world community.

The "lonely superpower" that Samuel Huntington once wrote about now appears dangerously on the verge of losing its "coalition of the willing" against Iran, both inside and outside the United Nations. The only choice is either stubborn refusal to make the necessary policy adjustments toward Iran, along the lines of a non-threatening civil diplomacy, or to face what is certain to be a diplomatic defeat in the global arena.

Iran's soft-power diplomacy should be given much credit for both the summit's success and the related frustration of the US's coercive diplomacy.

 
 

Offline bigron

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Re: CNN, C-SPAN, BBC, FOX, FRANCE: The war in Iran is on!!!!!!
« Reply #204 on: October 18, 2007, 08:33:56 am »
October 18, 2007
Nuclear-Armed Iran Risks World War, Bush Says

By SHERYL GAY STOLBERG
http://www.nytimes.com/2007/10/18/washington/18prexy.html?ex=1350360000&en=1b0d8a049da1c321&ei=5090&partner=rssuserland&emc=rss

WASHINGTON, Oct. 17 — President Bush issued a stark warning on Iran on Wednesday, suggesting that if the country obtained nuclear arms, it could lead to “World War III.”

“We got a leader in Iran who has announced that he wants to destroy Israel,” Mr. Bush said at a White House news conference, referring to a remark by the Iranian president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, that Israel “will disappear soon.” Mr. Bush said he had “told people that if you’re interested in avoiding World War III, it seems like you ought to be interested in preventing them from having the knowledge necessary to make a nuclear weapon.”

Mr. Bush has said in the past that he would never “tolerate” a nuclear-armed Iran. But the comment on Wednesday was another sign that he did not accept a view stated last month by Gen. John P. Abizaid, who retired this year as the top American commander in the Middle East. The general said that “there are ways to live with a nuclear Iran.”

Mr. Bush sought in the news conference to make clear that his pressure tactics, including economic sanctions, were aimed at persuading the Iranian people to find new leadership.

“The whole strategy is that, you know, at some point in time leaders or responsible folks inside of Iran may get tired of isolation and say, ‘This isn’t worth it,’ and to me it’s worth the effort to keep the pressure on this government,” Mr. Bush said.

He added, “My intent is to continue to rally the world, to send a focused signal to the Iranian government that we will continue to work to isolate you in the hopes that at some point somebody else shows up and says it’s not worth the isolation.”

The president was responding to a question about the Russian president, Vladimir V. Putin, who visited Iran this week and warned the United States against military action there. Before that, in Moscow, Mr. Putin said he saw “no evidence” that Iran was trying to acquire nuclear weapons.

Mr. Bush insisted that he and Mr. Putin see eye to eye on the Iranian nuclear threat.

“We don’t agree on a lot of issues,” Mr. Bush said. “We do agree on some: Iran is one; nuclear proliferation is another.”

The president made his remarks on a day when Mr. Putin appeared in newspaper photographs standing side by side with Mr. Ahmadinejad. Mr. Bush dismissed any notion that the pictures reflected like-mindedness, saying, “Generally, leaders don’t like to be photographed scowling at each other.”

Mr. Bush has never quite been able to ride out his oft-quoted remark that he had looked into Mr. Putin’s eyes and gotten “a sense of his soul.” On Wednesday, he defended his brand of personal diplomacy, even as he expressed a wariness about Mr. Putin’s commitment to democracy.

Under Russia’s Constitution, Mr. Putin is supposed to step down next year, but he has indicated that he may try to keep his power by becoming prime minister. At a recent meeting in Australia, Mr. Bush said, he asked Mr. Putin about his plans.

“I tried to, you know, get it out of him — who’s going to be his successor, what he intends to do,” Mr. Bush said. “And he was wily. He wouldn’t tip his hand.”



Offline bigron

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Re: CNN, C-SPAN, BBC, FOX, FRANCE: The war in Iran is on!!!!!!
« Reply #205 on: October 18, 2007, 08:37:03 am »
Putin Is Said to Offer Idea on Standoff Over Iran
By NAZILA FATHI
http://www.nytimes.com/2007/10/18/world/middleeast/18iran.html?ex=1350360000&en=22f8cdcfc6a90a12&ei=5090&partner=rssuserland&emc=rss

TEHRAN, Oct. 17 — Russia’s president, Vladimir V. Putin, proposed a new way to help resolve the standoff over Iran’s nuclear program during an extraordinary meeting with Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, said the country’s chief nuclear negotiator on Wednesday.

The negotiator, Ali Larijani, told reporters that Mr. Putin, who was granted an audience with Ayatollah Khamenei on Tuesday evening, “offered a special proposal.” Neither the Iranians nor the Russians would disclose any details, but Mr. Larijani said the Iranian side was studying it.

“One of the issues he brought up was his view on the nuclear issue,” Mr. Larijani said, according to the ISNA news agency. “We are reviewing it now.”

State-run television and news agencies quoted Ayatollah Khamenei as telling Mr. Putin, “We will think about what you said and about your proposal,” even as he added that Iran was “determined to provide our country’s need for nuclear energy.”

Mr. Putin’s visit highlighted the fact that Russia seems to be increasingly distancing itself from the United States and the Europeans on a strategy to curb Iran’s nuclear program. While those nations have sought to impose new Security Council sanctions on Iran, the governments of Russia and China have resisted, arguing that more time is needed.

Earlier, Moscow proposed to enrich uranium in Russia for use in Iranian reactors, assuring that Iran would not produce the highly enriched uranium needed for nuclear weapons. Tehran rejected the idea as an impingement on its sovereignty.

During his visit, which included a meeting with President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Mr. Putin also warned the West against a military attack on Iran, stressing that Tehran had a right to peaceful nuclear energy. He also said that the Russian-built nuclear power plant at Bushehr, in southern Iran, where construction has been slowed by a dispute over payments, would be finished as scheduled.

Underscoring the friendly nature of the visit, a joint statement spoke of “the closeness of Russian and Iranian positions over the key world questions and the development of cooperation to establish a world order that is more just.”

It also stressed the need to solve the nuclear issue as quickly as possible “through politics and diplomacy”; committed Russia to speed up discussions for the construction and sale of Tupolev 214 and Tupolev 334 airliners; and spoke of increased cooperation in energy and aerospace.

Russia is eager to deepen its diplomatic and economic relations with Iran. Iran’s Fars news service reported that Mr. Putin said during his meeting with Ayatollah Khamenei that Russia was ready to “expand ties without limitations.” As Iran’s most senior official, the ayatollah has final word on state matters, and his decision to see Mr. Putin was regarded as significant in itself. Even Mohamed ElBaradei, the director of the International Atomic Energy Agency, the United Nations nuclear watchdog, did not see Ayatollah Khamenei when he visited here last year.

Mr. Putin has recently met with Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany, President Nicolas Sarkozy of France and Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.

Russia and China hold veto power on the Security Council, and Iran is relying on both countries, which have important trade ties with Iran, to oppose another round of sanctions. Moscow has already voted for two sets of milder sanctions. The United States and European countries have said that they will impose tougher sanctions on Iran if it refuses to suspend its sensitive uranium enrichment activities.

Mr. Larijani is scheduled to discuss Iran’s nuclear case with Javier Solana, the European Union’s foreign policy chief, in Rome next Tuesday.

An American official who was part of a delegation that visited the Kremlin last week suggested that Mr. Putin intimated in private that he had concerns about Iran’s nuclear program as well.

“I will tell you that what we heard last week once the cameras left was not bad,” said the official, who asked not to be identified because he was not authorized to speak on the record. “I cannot rule out that he delivered a message that we would like.”

He also said that the construction delays at Bushehr were not coincidental and were part of Russia’s strategy of proceeding slowly with aid to Iran.

In Jerusalem, Ms. Rice answered questions about Mr. Putin’s visit to Iran by saying that Russia continued to back the diplomatic process to review the possibility of new sanctions following reports next month by Dr. ElBaradei and Mr. Solana. Russia, along with China, opposed a new round of sanctions at a meeting in New York last month.

Neither Mr. Solana nor Dr. ElBaradei was informed by the Russians about Mr. Putin’s proposal, officials in both their offices said. Ms. Rice discussed Iran extensively during meetings in Moscow last week, including one with Mr. Putin, who she said supported the goal of preventing Iran from developing nuclear weapons. “I saw no evidence that Russia intends to do anything but stay on that path we laid out,” she said, appearing with Israel’s foreign minister, Tzipi Livni.

But clearly Russia has emerged as at least a semi-independent broker in the nuclear crisis. Just hours after Mr. Putin left Iran, Israel announced that Prime Minister Ehud Olmert would visit Russia on Thursday for what one official described as a “last-minute, urgent meeting.”

U.S. Ties Missile Shield to Iran

BRUSSELS, Oct. 17 (Agence France-Presse) — The United States could change its approach to developing a missile shield if Iran were to suspend uranium enrichment in its nuclear program, a senior State Department official said on Wednesday.

The official, Assistant Secretary of State Daniel Fried, said that United States officials had explained Washington’s stance to Russia in talks at NATO headquarters to help allay fears that the missile shield posed a threat to Russia. “Our real concern is not Russia,” Mr. Fried told reporters in Brussels.

C. J. Chivers contributed reporting from Moscow, and Steven Lee Myers from Jerusalem.



Offline bigron

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Re: CNN, C-SPAN, BBC, FOX, FRANCE: The war in Iran is on!!!!!!
« Reply #206 on: October 18, 2007, 08:40:57 am »
Will we fall for war vs. Iran?

October 17, 2007
http://www.suntimes.com/news/greeley/606071,CST-EDT-greel17.article
ANDREW GREELEY agreel@aol.com
It would appear, according to news reports, that the hard-liners in the Bush administration, led by the vice president, are pushing for a war with Iran. The tactics are the same. Once you've played the fear card to start one war, the second time is easier.

Iran is a threat to American security and freedom. They are trying to build nuclear bombs to use against us. They are already killing Americans in Iraq. They hate us and our freedom. Eliminating the Iranian government and destroying its nuclear facilities is essential to the security of the United States and part of the international war on terror.

Will the shell game work again? I would like to think that it would not, that the American people will not be won over by "war on terror" propaganda, that Congress would not be taken in this time (not even Sen. Hillary Clinton), and that the national media would raise a loud hue and cry against yet another "preemptive war.''

Yet surely the hawks would shout once again that in a "national security emergency" the commander in chief has the power to go to war without authorization from Congress. The president might argue that Gen. David Petraeus approved the attack. Indeed, those on the dark side could even suggest that a presidential election could be "postponed" until the Iranian crisis is over -- and like the Iraq crisis, that might be never.

Once you have stolen one and maybe two presidential elections, it's relatively easy to steal a third, especially as part of the "global war on terror" and a "national security emergency."

A year ago, I would not have suspected that such a scenario could possibly be taken seriously. I'm not so sure anymore. The claims made for the almost unlimited power of the commander in chief seem to make anything, however bizarre, possible. Despite intense national opposition to the war in Iraq, there are enough "patriotic" cement heads in the country to provide support for such a project.

Cries like "nuke the Iranians before they nuke us" would be heard in the land. It might tip the national election to a Republican candidate -- perhaps the 9/11 candidate from New York City -- and to a majority of Republicans in Congress.

The president could even hint that such a war was ''the right thing to do,'' a conclusion he had reached after a long conversation with God.

There is precious little that those who are opposed to such a war could do. The president, his vice president could assert, is the commander in chief. He has the inherent power to start a war if he deems it necessary for the security of the country. The National Security Council could eavesdrop on opponents to the war, and the FBI could turn up with "national security letters" to probe into the lives of these "security risks." The pliant Supreme Court, having permitted the president to seize an election on the grounds of equal rights under the law, could easily phony up an argument that Justices Scalia and Thomas and their allies would support.

Perhaps the House could vote a bill of impeachment but there are not enough votes for conviction in the Senate. And the president could dismiss such an action as a violation of his powers as commander in chief.

Certainly Congress could pass a joint resolution now against such a war. But they would need half a dozen Republican senators to support it. That's not likely to happen. And the president could claim that he has the inherent power to ignore such a resolution.

When it comes to war in this administration, Dick Cheney always gets his way.




Offline bigron

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Re: CNN, C-SPAN, BBC, FOX, FRANCE: The war in Iran is on!!!!!!
« Reply #207 on: October 19, 2007, 07:13:10 am »
Military Resistance Forced Shift on Iran Strike
 
by Gareth Porter
http://www.antiwar.com/porter/?articleid=11781

The George W. Bush administration's shift from the military option of a massive strategic attack against Iran to a surgical strike against selected targets associated with the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), reported by Seymour Hersh in the New Yorker earlier this month, appears to have been prompted not by new alarm at Iran's role in Iraq but by the explicit opposition of the nation's top military leaders to an unprovoked attack on Iran's nuclear facilities.

The reorientation of the military threat was first signaled by passages on Iran in Bush's Jan. 10 speech and followed by only a few weeks a decisive rejection by the Joint Chiefs of Staff of a strategic attack on Iran's nuclear facilities.

Although scarcely mentioned in press reports of the speech, which was devoted almost entirely to announcing the troop "surge" in Iraq, Bush accused both Iran and Syria of "allowing terrorists and insurgents to use their territory to move in and out of Iraq." Bush also alleged that Iran was "providing material support for attacks on American troops."

Those passages were intended in part to put pressure on Iran, and were accompanied by an intensification of a campaign begun the previous month to seize Iranian officials inside Iraq. But according to Hillary Mann, who was director for Persian Gulf and Afghanistan Affairs on the National Security Council staff in 2003, they also provided a legal basis for a possible attack on Iran.

"I believe the president chose his words very carefully," says Mann, "and laid down a legal predicate that could be used to justify later military action against Iran."

Mann says her interpretation of the language is based on the claim by the White House of a right to attack another country in "anticipatory self-defense" based on Article 51 of the United Nations Charter. That had been the legal basis cited by then National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice had in September 2002 in making the case for the invasion of Iraq.

The introduction of a new reason for striking Iran, which also implied a much more limited set of targets related to Iraq, followed a meeting between Bush and the Joint Chiefs of Staff on Dec. 13, 2006 in which the uniformed military leaders rejected a strike against Iran's nuclear program. Time magazine political columnist Joe Klein, reported last May that military and intelligence sources told him that Bush had asked the Joint Chiefs at the meeting about a possible strike against the Iranian nuclear program., and that they had unanimously opposed such an attack.

Mann says that she was also told by her own contacts in the Pentagon that the Joint Chiefs had expressed opposition to a strike against Iran.

The Joint Chiefs were soon joined in opposition to a strike on Iran by Admiral William Fallon, who was nominated to become CENTCOM commander in January. Mann says Pentagon contacts have also told her that Fallon made his opposition to war against Iran clear to the White House.

IPS reported last May that Fallon had indicated privately that he was determined to prevent an attack on Iran and even prepared to resign to do so. A source who met with Fallon at the time of his confirmation hearing quoted him as vowing that there would be "no war with Iran" while he was CENTCOM commander and as hinting very strongly that he would quit rather than go along with an attack.

Although he did not specifically refer to the Joint Chiefs, Fallon also suggested that other military leaders were opposing a strike against Iran, saying, "There are several of us who are trying to put the crazies back in the box," according to the same source.

Fallon's opposition to a strike against Iranian nuclear, military and economic targets would make it very difficult, if not impossible for the White House to carry out such an operation, according to military experts. As CENTCOM commander, Fallon has complete control over all military access to the region, says retired Air Force Col. Sam Gardiner, an expert on military strategy who has taught at the National War College.

Douglas McGregor, a retired Army Lt. Col. who was a tank commander in the 1991 Gulf War and has taught at the National Defense University, agrees. "I find it hard to imagine that anything can happen in the area without the involvement of the Central Command," says McGregor.

The possibility that Fallon might object to an unprovoked attack on Iran or even resign over the issue represents a significant deterrent to such an attack.

Former NSC adviser Mann believes the Iraq-focused strategy is now aimed at averting any resignation threat by Fallon or other military leaders by carrying out a very limited strike that would be presented as a response to a specific incident in Iraq in which the deaths of US soldiers could be attributed to Iranian policy. She says she doubts Fallon and other military leaders would "fall on their swords" over such a strike.

Gardiner agrees that Fallon is unlikely to refuse to carry out such a limited strike under those circumstances.

Mann believes the Bush-Cheney purpose in advancing the strategy is to provoke Iranian retaliation. "The concern I have is that it would be just enough so Iranians would retaliate against US allies," she says.

But the issue of what evidence of Iranian complicity would be adequate to justify such a strike evidently remains a matter of debate within the administration. A story published by McClatchy newspapers Aug. 9 reported that Vice President Dick Cheney had argued some weeks earlier for a strike against camps in Iran allegedly used to train Iraqi Shiite militiamen fighting US troops if "hard new evidence" could be obtained of Iran's complicity in supporting anti-US forces in Iraq.

But Cheney and his allies have been frustrated in the search for such evidence. Mann notes that British forces in southern Iraq patrolled the border very aggressively for six months last year to find evidence of Iranian involvement in supplying weapons to Iraqi guerrillas but found nothing.

After several months of trying to establish specific links between Iraqis suspected of trafficking in weapons to a specific Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guard contact, the US command has not claimed a single case of such a link. Maj. Gen. Rick Lynch, the US commander for southern Iraq, where most of the Shiite militias operate, admitted in a Jul. 6 briefing that his troops had not captured "anybody that we can tie to Iran."

Sen. Joe Lieberman, who is known to be closely allied with Cheney on Iran policy, has betrayed impatience with a policy that depends on obtaining proof of Iranian complicity in attacks. On Jun. 11 he called for "strike over the border into Iran, where we have good evidence that they have a base at which they are training these people coming back into Iraq to kill our soldiers."

Lieberman repeated that position on Jul. 2, but thus far it has not prevailed.

(Inter Press Service)

 
 

Offline bigron

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Re: CNN, C-SPAN, BBC, FOX, FRANCE: The war in Iran is on!!!!!!
« Reply #208 on: October 19, 2007, 07:30:35 am »
Pushing War With Iran
By: William F. Jasper
October 29, 2007
http://www.thenewamerican.com/node/5999

“Bush Warns of a Nuclear Armed Iran,” blared the headline of an Associated Press report on the president’s October 3, 2007 speech before the Lancaster Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. Do the increasingly strident statements by the president, as well as by State Department and Pentagon officials, over the past several months signal that a U.S. military attack on Iran may be imminent? Both opponents and supporters of a military strike believe it is coming soon, based not only on official administration rhetoric and the observable preparatory movement of U.S. military assets, but also on the White House’s use of private sources to build a pro-war constituency among the American public.

In recent months there has been a marked escalation of calls — by neoconservative think tanks, radio talk shows, and media organs closely allied to the Bush administration — for a massive pre-emptive U.S. military strike on Iran. Some prominent spokesmen are openly calling for the U.S. to use tactical nuclear missiles. Is this a spontaneous crescendo of popular support or a huge propaganda campaign initiated by White House spinmeisters?

On September 30, the Israeli internet news site, IsraelNationalNews.com, reported on the comments of two of the leading neoconservative war hawks, John Bolton and Norman Podhoretz. The story by Gil Ronen, entitled “Bolton, Podhoretz Say: Bomb Iranian Nuclear Plants,” reports:

Former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations John Bolton told Conservative Party delegates in Britain on Sunday that UN efforts to negotiate with Iran had failed and that he saw no alternative to a pre-emptive strike on suspected nuclear facilities in the country. Influential conservative thinker Norman Podhoretz told a British paper that he has advised U.S. President George W. Bush to do just that.


As THE NEW AMERICAN reported in its April 2 cover story, “Engineering War,” the Bush administration has been strongly signaling for months that it is preparing militarily for a massive attack on Iran. It also has been trying to prepare the public psyche to accept this aggression as a course of action that is unavoidable; there is, supposedly, no other alternative.

Neocon War Drums
That is the unmistakable message that is being sent repeatedly through the neoconservative transmission belts in the blogosphere, the lecture circuits, talk radio, television news, and the political campaign trails. The building crescendo has the sound and smell of a government-orchestrated propaganda campaign. Back on August 31, the New Yorker posted an online report from Afghanistan expert Barnett Rubin who cited an unnamed Washington neoconservative source who says the current warmongering upsurge has come specifically at the behest of Vice President Dick Cheney. According to Mr. Rubin:

They [the source’s institution] have “instructions” (yes, that was the word used) from the Office of the Vice-President to roll out a campaign for war with Iran in the week after Labor Day; it will be coordinated with the American Enterprise Institute, the Wall Street Journal, the Weekly Standard, Commentary, Fox, and the usual suspects. It will be a heavy sustained assault on the airwaves, designed to knock public sentiment into a position from which a war can be maintained. Evidently they don’t think they’ll ever get majority support for this — they want something like 35-40 percent support, which in their book is “plenty.”


We cannot confirm whether or not the above-mentioned news organs are taking direction from Mr. Cheney. We don’t need to; all of them are, in point of fact, carrying out a “heavy sustained assault” for an imminent pre-emptive attack on Iran. And their voices are being amplified by the usual war-hawk choristers that have usurped the conservative label.

But Bolton’s speech in England shows that the propaganda line has a built-in mission-creep message. Although the initial selling point to the party faithful is that Iran’s WMD capabilities must be taken out because of the potential threat posed to Israel and America, the war plans are morphing into much grander objectives, starting with “regime change.” (Where have we heard that before; and where has it ever ended with that, once regime change was effected?)

Mr. Bolton told his British audience that any strike should be followed by an attempt to remove “the source of the problem,” namely, Iranian President Ahmadinejad. Here’s how IsraelNationalNews.com reported it:

“If we were to strike Iran,” Bolton said, “it should be accompanied by an effort at regime change as well, because I think that really sends the signal that we are not attacking the people, [but rather] the nuclear weapons program. The U.S. once had the capability to engineer the clandestine overthrow of governments. I wish we could get it back.” His words were met with applause and cheers.


Of course, if Ahmadinejad were removed (and even executed), we would soon find (as we found in Yugoslavia, Afghanistan, and Iraq when Milosevich, the Taliban and Saddam, respectively, were removed) that the mission had “evolved” from regime change to nation building. Which, naturally, means perpetual occupation of Iran by U.S. military forces (already spread deadly thin) or UN “coalition-of-the-willing” military forces paid for by the American taxpayers (already bled thin).

Mr. Podhoretz is now a senior foreign-policy adviser to GOP presidential candidate Rudy Giuliani, who seems to revel in his image as the most hawkish of the Republican hopefuls. Giuliani has publicly stated his position in favor of a pre-emptive military strike and doesn’t rule out the use of tactical nuclear weapons. Republican presidential candidates Mitt Romney and John McCain are also keeping the nuclear option on the table.

Pre-emptive Blitz
The Sunday Times of London reported on September 2 that the Pentagon had already drawn up plans for a “three day blitz” on over one thousand targets to take out Iran’s entire military:

The Pentagon has drawn up plans for massive airstrikes against 1,200 targets in Iran, designed to annihilate the Iranians’ military capability in three days, according to a national security expert.


Alexis Debat, director of terrorism and national security at the Nixon Center, said last week that US military planners were not preparing for “pinprick strikes” against Iran’s nuclear facilities. “They’re about taking out the entire Iranian military,” he said.


Debat was speaking at a meeting organised by The National Interest, a conservative foreign policy journal. He told The Sunday Times that the US military had concluded: “Whether you go for pinprick strikes or all-out military action, the reaction from the Iranians will be the same.” It was, he added, a “very legitimate strategic calculus.”


Alexis Debat, the French terrorism and security “expert” cited by the Times, has been a major neocon cheerleader for widening the Iraq War policies and for a pre-emptive attack on Iran. He has been presented as an expert on terrorism and/or national security, not only by the Sunday Times (an organ of Rupert Murdoch’s hawkish media empire), but also by ABC News, PBS, the Los Angeles Times, Associated Press, Time, the International Herald Tribune, and the National Interest. He was until recently a reporter and consultant for ABC News and a senior fellow at the prestigious Nixon Center. However, it turns out that Monsieur Debat is a complete fraud. “Dr.” Debat’s Ph.D. from the Sorbonne doesn’t exist. The interviews he supposedly conducted with Alan Greenspan, Bill Gates, Barak Obama, Kofi Annan, Bill Clinton, Colin Powell, and others were totally fabricated. ABC News and the Nixon Center have quietly announced that he “resigned” recently from their employ.

However, the one story the now-toxic and discredited Alexis Debat very likely did not fabricate out of thin air is his report on the administration’s plans for an upcoming “shock and awe” assault on Iran. Debat’s claim of an imminent massive strike against the Tehran regime tracks very closely with the stories that the Bush spin doctors have been feeding to other trusted sources — such as Bolton, Podhoretz, and other neocons. Even more importantly, it tracks with the concentrated deployment of U.S. carrier groups and other military assets to the Persian Gulf over the past year and the escalating saber-rattling by Bush war hawks in the Pentagon, the State Department, and on Capitol Hill

Offline bigron

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Re: CNN, C-SPAN, BBC, FOX, FRANCE: The war in Iran is on!!!!!!
« Reply #209 on: October 20, 2007, 07:56:13 am »
Mid-East expert admits: No proof of Iran nukes


CSIS Eurasia and Russian expert Andrew Kuchins admitted that there is no proof that Iran is trying to amass a nuclear arsenal.


WATCH INTERVIEW VIDEO HERE:

[url][http://www.aljazeera.com/mm/video/video.php?op=showvideo&vidid=112/url]


Offline UpsetBrit

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Re: CNN, C-SPAN, BBC, FOX, FRANCE: The war in Iran is on!!!!!!
« Reply #210 on: October 30, 2007, 06:19:54 pm »
I'm in the middle of reading this huge and intelligent thread so forgive me if i've yet to read this in here or on a similar thread i've yet to read.

What were the yield of the rogue nukes, does anyone know?

That would give us an idea as to the neocons agenda with regard to targets ie high yield might mean city targets?

Maybe nobody knows but i'm stocking up on tape and supplies incase Russia decides to backup their new friends. I mean, Russia recently said that an attack on Iran would be considered in Moscow as an attack on Russia!
I live close to an oil depot and if a major world conflict arises, i'd be pretty much incinerated alongside my daughters and nothing short of a nuclear shelter would save us.
One mind at a time...

Offline Dig

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Re: CNN, C-SPAN, BBC, FOX, FRANCE: The war in Iran is on!!!!!!
« Reply #211 on: November 01, 2007, 03:11:52 pm »
I'm in the middle of reading this huge and intelligent thread so forgive me if i've yet to read this in here or on a similar thread i've yet to read.

What were the yield of the rogue nukes, does anyone know?

That would give us an idea as to the neocons agenda with regard to targets ie high yield might mean city targets?

Maybe nobody knows but i'm stocking up on tape and supplies incase Russia decides to backup their new friends. I mean, Russia recently said that an attack on Iran would be considered in Moscow as an attack on Russia!
I live close to an oil depot and if a major world conflict arises, i'd be pretty much incinerated alongside my daughters and nothing short of a nuclear shelter would save us.

http://forum.prisonplanet.com/index.php?topic=4677.0
All eyes are opened, or opening, to the rights of man. The general spread of the light of science has already laid open to every view the palpable truth, that the mass of mankind has not been born with saddles on their backs, nor a favored few booted and spurred, ready to ride them legitimately