We had a server outage, and we're rebuilding the site. Most of the site features won't work. Thank you for your patience.
imc indymedia

Los Angeles Indymedia : Activist News

white themeblack themered themetheme help
About Us Contact Us Calendar Publish RSS
Features
latest news
best of news
syndication
commentary


KILLRADIO

VozMob

ABCF LA

A-Infos Radio

Indymedia On Air

Dope-X-Resistance-LA List

LAAMN List




IMC Network:

Original Cities

www.indymedia.org africa: ambazonia canarias estrecho / madiaq kenya nigeria south africa canada: hamilton london, ontario maritimes montreal ontario ottawa quebec thunder bay vancouver victoria windsor winnipeg east asia: burma jakarta japan korea manila qc europe: abruzzo alacant andorra antwerpen armenia athens austria barcelona belarus belgium belgrade bristol brussels bulgaria calabria croatia cyprus emilia-romagna estrecho / madiaq euskal herria galiza germany grenoble hungary ireland istanbul italy la plana liege liguria lille linksunten lombardia london madrid malta marseille nantes napoli netherlands nice northern england norway oost-vlaanderen paris/Île-de-france patras piemonte poland portugal roma romania russia saint-petersburg scotland sverige switzerland thessaloniki torun toscana toulouse ukraine united kingdom valencia latin america: argentina bolivia chiapas chile chile sur cmi brasil colombia ecuador mexico peru puerto rico qollasuyu rosario santiago tijuana uruguay valparaiso venezuela venezuela oceania: adelaide aotearoa brisbane burma darwin jakarta manila melbourne perth qc sydney south asia: india mumbai united states: arizona arkansas asheville atlanta austin baltimore big muddy binghamton boston buffalo charlottesville chicago cleveland colorado columbus dc hawaii houston hudson mohawk kansas city la madison maine miami michigan milwaukee minneapolis/st. paul new hampshire new jersey new mexico new orleans north carolina north texas nyc oklahoma philadelphia pittsburgh portland richmond rochester rogue valley saint louis san diego san francisco san francisco bay area santa barbara santa cruz, ca sarasota seattle tampa bay tennessee urbana-champaign vermont western mass worcester west asia: armenia beirut israel palestine process: fbi/legal updates mailing lists process & imc docs tech volunteer projects: print radio satellite tv video regions: oceania united states topics: biotech

Surviving Cities

www.indymedia.org africa: canada: quebec east asia: japan europe: athens barcelona belgium bristol brussels cyprus germany grenoble ireland istanbul lille linksunten nantes netherlands norway portugal united kingdom latin america: argentina cmi brasil rosario oceania: aotearoa united states: austin big muddy binghamton boston chicago columbus la michigan nyc portland rochester saint louis san diego san francisco bay area santa cruz, ca tennessee urbana-champaign worcester west asia: palestine process: fbi/legal updates process & imc docs projects: radio satellite tv
printable version - js reader version - view hidden posts - tags and related articles

The Real Aim of Israel’s Bomb Iran Campaign and...

by General Joe and friends Sunday, Aug. 15, 2010 at 2:59 PM

“But Israel clearly cannot afford to risk a war with Iran without the assurance that the United States being committed to participate in it. That is why the Israeli lobby in Washington and its allies argue that Obama should support an Israeli strike, which would mean that he would have to attack Iran with full force if it retaliates against such an Israeli strike. The knowledge that Israel could not attack Iran without U.S. consent makes Israeli officials extremely sensitive about the possibility that Obama would explicitly reject an Israeli strike.”



The Real Aim of Israel’s Bomb Iran Campaign

by Gareth Porter, August 01, 2010

Reuel Marc Gerecht’s screed justifying an Israeli bombing attack on Iran coincides with the opening of the new Israel lobby campaign marked by the introduction of House Resolution 1553 expressing full support for such an Israeli attack.

What is important to understand about this campaign is that the aim of Gerecht and of the right-wing government of Benjamin Netanyahu is to support an attack by Israel so that the United States can be drawn into direct, full-scale war with Iran.

That has long been the Israeli strategy for Iran, because Israel cannot fight a war with Iran without full U.S. involvement. Israel needs to know that the United States will finish the war that Israel wants to start.

Gerecht openly expresses the hope that any Iranian response to the Israeli attack would trigger full-scale U.S. war against Iran. "If Khamenei has a death-wish, he’ll let the Revolutionary Guards mine the strait, the entrance to the Persian Gulf," writes Gerecht. "It might be the only thing that would push President Obama to strike Iran militarily…." Gerecht suggest that the same logic would apply to any Iranian "terrorism against the United States after an Israeli strike," by which we really means any attack on a U.S. target in the Middle East. Gerecht writes that Obama might be "obliged" to threaten major retaliation "immediately after an Israeli surprise attack."

That’s the key sentence in this very long Gerecht argument. Obama is not going to be "obliged" to join Israeli aggression against Iran unless he feels that domestic political pressures to do so are too strong to resist. That’s why the Israelis are determined to line up a strong majority in Congress and public opinion for war to foreclose Obama’s options.

In the absence of confidence that Obama would be ready to come into the war fully behind Israel, there cannot be an Israeli strike.

Gerecht’s argument for war relies on a fanciful nightmare scenario of Iran doling out nuclear weapons to Islamic extremists all over the Middle East. But the real concern of the Israelis and their lobbyists, as Gerecht’s past writing has explicitly stated, is to destroy Iran’s Islamic regime in a paroxysm of U.S. military violence.

Gerecht first revealed this Israeli-neocon fantasy as early as 2000, before the Iranian nuclear program was even taken seriously, in an essay written for a book published by the Project for a New American Century. Gerecht argued that, if Iran could be caught in a "terrorist act," the U.S. Navy should "retaliate with fury." The purpose of such a military response, he wrote, should be to "strike with truly devastating effect against the ruling mullahs and the repressive institutions that maintain them."

And lest anyone fail to understand what he meant by that, Gerecht was more explicit: "That is, no cruise missiles at midnight to minimize the body count. The clerics will almost certainly strike back unless Washington uses overwhelming, paralyzing force."

In 2006-07, the Israeli war party had reason to believed that it could hijack U.S. policy long enough to get the war it wanted, because it had placed one of its most militant agents, David Wurmser, in a strategic position to influence that policy.

We now know that Wurmser, formerly a close adviser to Benjamin Netanyahu and during that period Vice President Dick Cheney’s main adviser on the Middle East, urged a policy of overwhelming U.S. military force against Iran. After leaving the administration in 2007, Wurmser revealed that he had advocated a U.S. war on Iran, not to set back the nuclear program but to achieve regime change.

"Only if what we do is placed in the framework of a fundamental assault on the survival of the regime will it have a pick-up among ordinary Iranians," Wurmser told The Telegraph. The U.S. attack was not to be limited to nuclear targets but was to be quite thorough and massively destructive. "If we start shooting, we must be prepared to fire the last shot. Don’t shoot a bear if you’re not going to kill it."

Of course, that kind of war could not be launched out of the blue. It would have required a casus belli to justify a limited initial attack that would then allow a rapid escalation of U.S. military force. In 2007, Cheney acted on Wurmser’s advice and tried to get Bush to provoke a war with Iran over Iraq, but it was foiled by the Pentagon.

As Wurmser was beginning to whisper that advice in Cheney’s ear in 2006, Gerecht was making the same argument in the Weekly Standard:

"Bombing the nuclear facilities once would mean we were declaring war on the clerical regime. We shouldn’t have any illusions about that. We could not stand idly by and watch the mullahs build other sites. If the ruling mullahs were to go forward with rebuilding what they’d lost–and it would be surprising to discover the clerical regime knuckling after an initial bombing run–we’d have to strike until they stopped. And if we had any doubt about where their new facilities were (and it’s a good bet the clerical regime would try to bury new sites deep under heavily populated areas), and we were reasonably suspicious they were building again, we’d have to consider, at a minimum, using special-operations forces to penetrate suspected sites."

The idea of waging a U.S. war of destruction against Iran is obvious lunacy, which is why U.S. military leaders have strongly resisted it both during the Bush and Obama administrations. But Gerecht makes it clear that Israel believes it can use its control of Congress to pound Obama into submission. Democrats in Congress, he boasts, "are mentally in a different galaxy than they were under President Bush." Even though Israel has increasingly been regarded around the world as a rogue state after its Gaza atrocities and the commando killings of unarmed civilians on board the Mavi Marmara, its grip on the U.S. Congress appears as strong as ever.

Moreover, polling data for 2010 show that a majority of Americans have already been manipulated into supporting war against Iran – in large part because more than two-thirds of those polled have gotten the impression that Iran already has nuclear weapons. The Israelis are apparently hoping to exploit that advantage. "If the Israelis bomb now, American public opinion will probably be with them," writes Gerecht. "Perhaps decisively so." Netanyahu must be feeling good about the prospects for pressuring Barack Obama to join an Israeli war of aggression against Iran. It was Netanyahu, after all, who declared in 2001, "I know what America is. America is a thing you can move very easily, move it in the right direction. They won’t get in the way."

-----

Israeli Generals and Intel Officials Oppose Attack on Iran

by Gareth Porter, August 14, 2010

Pro-Israeli journalist Jeffrey Goldberg’s article in The Atlantic magazine was evidently aimed at showing why the Barack Obama administration should worry that it risks an attack by the government of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Iran in the coming months unless it takes a much more menacing line toward Iran’s nuclear program.

But the article provides new evidence that senior figures in the Israeli intelligence and military leadership oppose such a strike against Iran and believe that Netanyahu’s apocalyptic rhetoric about an Iranian nuclear threat as an "existential threat" is unnecessary and self-defeating.

Although not reported by Goldberg, Israeli military and intelligence figures began to express their opposition to such rhetoric on Iran in the early 1990s, and Netanyahu acted to end such talk when he became prime minister in 1996.

The Goldberg article also reveals extreme Israeli sensitivity to any move by Obama to publicly demand that Israel desist from such a strike, reflecting the reality that the Israeli government could not go ahead with any strike without being assured of U.S. direct involvement in the war with Iran.

Goldberg argues that a likely scenario some months in the future is that Israeli officials will call their U.S. counterparts to inform them that Israeli planes are already on their way to bomb Iranian nuclear sites.

The Israelis would explain that they had "no choice," he writes, because "a nuclear Iran poses the gravest threat since Hitler to the physical survival of the Jewish people."

He claims the "consensus" among present and past Israeli leaders is that the chances are better than 50/50 that Israel "will launch a strike by next July," based on interviews with 40 such Israeli decision-makers.

Goldberg is best known for hewing to the neoconservative line in his reporting on Iraq, particularly in his insistence that that Saddam Hussein had extensive ties with al-Qaeda.

Goldberg quotes an Israeli official familiar with Netanyahu’s thinking as saying, "In World War II, the Jews had no power to stop Hitler from annihilating us. Six million were slaughtered. Today, six million Jews live in Israel, and someone is threatening them with annihilation."

In his interview with Goldberg for this article, however, Netanyahu does not argue that Iran might use nuclear weapons against Israel. Instead he argues that Hezbollah and Hamas would be able to "fire rockets and engage in other terror activities while enjoying a nuclear umbrella."

But Israel relies on conventional forces — not nuclear deterrence — against Hezbollah and Hamas, making that argument entirely specious.

Goldberg reports that other Israeli leaders, including defense minister Ehud Barack, acknowledge the real problem with the possibility of a nuclear Iran is that it would gradually erode Israel’s ability to retain its most talented people.

But that problem is mostly self-inflicted. Goldberg concedes that Israeli generals with whom he talked "worry that talk of an ‘existential threat’ is itself a kind of existential threat to the Zionist project, which was meant to preclude such threats against the Jewish people."

A number of sources told Goldberg, moreover, that Gabi Ashkenazi, the Israeli army chief of staff, doubts "the usefulness of an attack."

Top Israeli intelligence officials and others responsible for policy toward Iran have long argued, in fact, that the kind of apocalyptic rhetoric that Netanyahu has embraced in recent years is self-defeating.

Security correspondent Ronen Bergman reported in Yedioth Ahronoth, Israel’s most popular newspaper, in July 2009 that former chief of military intelligence Major General Aharon Zeevi Farkash said the Israeli public perception of the Iranian nuclear threat had been "distorted."

Farkash and other military intelligence and Mossad officials believe Iran’s main motive for seeking a nuclear weapons capability was not to threaten Israel but to "deter U.S. intervention and efforts at regime change," according to Bergman.

The use of blatantly distorted rhetoric about Iran as a threat to Israel — and Israeli intelligence officials’ disagreement with it — goes back to the early 1990s, when the Labor Party government in Israel began a campaign to portray Iran’s missile and nuclear programs as an "existential threat" to Israel, as Trita Parsi revealed in his 2007 book Treacherous Alliance.

An internal Israeli inter-ministerial committee formed in 1994 to make recommendations on dealing with Iran concluded that Israeli rhetoric had been "self-defeating," because it had actually made Iran more afraid of Israel, and more hostile toward it, Parsi writes.

Ironically, it was Netanyahu who decided to stop using such rhetoric after becoming prime minister the first time in mid-1996. Mossad director of intelligence Uzi Arad convinced him that Israel had a choice between making itself Iran’s enemy or allowing Iran to focus on threats from other states.

Netanyahu even sought Kazakh and Russian mediation between Iran and Israel.

But he reversed that policy when he became convinced that Tehran was seeking a rapprochement with Washington, which Israeli leaders feared would result in reduced U.S. support for Israel, according to Parsi’s account. As a result, Netanyahu reverted to the extreme rhetoric of his predecessors.

That episode suggests that Netanyahu is perfectly capable of grasping the intelligence community’s more nuanced analysis of Iran, contrary to his public stance that the Iranian threat is the same as that from Hitler’s Germany.

Netanyahu administration officials used Goldberg to convey the message to the Americans that they didn’t believe Obama would launch an attack on Iran, and therefore Israel would have to do so.

But Israel clearly cannot afford to risk a war with Iran without the assurance that the United States being committed to participate in it. That is why the Israeli lobby in Washington and its allies argue that Obama should support an Israeli strike, which would mean that he would have to attack Iran with full force if it retaliates against such an Israeli strike.

The knowledge that Israel could not attack Iran without U.S. consent makes Israeli officials extremely sensitive about the possibility that Obama would explicitly reject an Israeli strike.

Goldberg reports that "several Israeli officials" told him they were worried that U.S. intelligence might learn about Israeli plans to strike Iran "hours" before the scheduled launch.

The officials told Goldberg that if Obama were to say, "We know what you’re doing. Stop immediately," Israel might have to back down.

Goldberg alludes only vaguely to the possibility that the threat of an attack on Iran is a strategy designed to manipulate both Iran and the United States. In a March 2009 article in The Atlantic online, however, he was more straightforward, conceding that the Netanyahu threat to strike Iran if the United States failed to stop the Iranian nuclear program could be a "tremendous bluff."

(Inter Press Service)

-----

Obama must pressured to stop the Israeli “war production machine.” Help prevent the next “setup attack.” Spread these articles widely. General Joe







Find notes for further publishing below:

The real aim of Israel’s Bomb campaign

Israeli generals and intel officials oppose attack on Iran

“But Israel clearly cannot afford to risk a war with Iran without the assurance that the United States being committed to participate in it. That is why the Israeli lobby in Washington and its allies argue that Obama should support an Israeli strike, which would mean that he would have to attack Iran with full force if it retaliates against such an Israeli strike.

The knowledge that Israel could not attack Iran without U.S. consent makes Israeli officials extremely sensitive about the possibility that Obama would explicitly reject an Israeli strike.”





Report this post as:

© 2000-2018 Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Unless otherwise stated by the author, all content is free for non-commercial reuse, reprint, and rebroadcast, on the net and elsewhere. Opinions are those of the contributors and are not necessarily endorsed by the Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Running sf-active v0.9.4 Disclaimer | Privacy