Tag Archives | Iran
Patrick Foy writes at Counterpunch:
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What if the White House were deliberately misleading America and the world about a major foreign policy issue involving war and peace, would it not be something worth investigating? What if, on top of that, the US Congress and Senate were going along with the subterfuge, remaining silent and not questioning it in the slightest? Wouldn’t that phenomenon be remarkable?
What if the mainstream news media, both television and print, were also enabling the same White House campaign of misrepresentation? Would this not be even more shocking? Should not a free press be checking the facts, asking basic questions, instead of blindly parroting a government party line which could be little more than war propaganda?
If you guessed I am describing Iran’s alleged nuclear weapons program, hyped at every opportunity by the Obama White House and the Congress and by the Republicans and Mitt Romney, you would be on target. The nonstop campaign of harassing and demonizing Tehran, premised upon the existential threat supposedly posed by an Iranian atomic bomb, is a determined bipartisan affair in Washington.
A strange story is bouncing round the internets at present.
An Iranian news agency has apologised after being fooled by a spoof story from a US satirical website.
Fars news agency said on its website that its news item “was extracted” from the Onion website on Friday, but was taken down in less than two hours.
The Onion’s story claimed that rural Americans preferred Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to Barack Obama.
Fars’ editor-in-chief said he still believed that US politicians were deeply unpopular with their public.
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The Iranian version copied the original word-for-word, even including a made-up quote from a fictional West Virginia resident who says he’d rather go to a baseball game with Ahmadinejad because “he takes national defense seriously, and he’d never let some gay protesters tell him how to run his country like Obama does.”
Homosexual acts are punishable by death in Iran, and Ahmadinejad famously said during a 2007 appearance at Columbia University that “in Iran we don’t have homosexuals like in your country.”
The Iranian version of the article leaves out only The Onion’s description of Ahmadinejad as “a man who has repeatedly denied the Holocaust and has had numerous political prisoners executed.”
Onion editor Will Tracy put out a tongue-in-cheek statement that referred to Fars as “a subsidiary of The Onion” that has acted as the paper’s Middle Eastern bureau since it was founded in the mid-1980s by Onion publisher T.
In the lead up to President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s annual speech to the General Assembly, the American TV stations were preparing their audiences for another provocative Israel-hating rant.
Brace yourself, we were told; it is his last appearance in office so he would go off and all out in denouncing Israel and world’s Jews.
Secretary General Moon cautioned him publicly to restrain his rhetoric even as right wing media outlets like Rupert Murdoch’s New York Post, that has never seen a far right wing Zionist cause it hasn’t embraced, went into full deionization mode with a front cover featuring his picture and the words, “Peace of Sh*t.” (It was reminiscent of the Saddam baiting in US media in the run-up to the Iraq War.)
The rhetoric of the well orchestrated anti-Iranian crowds outside was even bloodier than the Iranians had ever been with former Republican speaker of the House and GOP presidential Candidate Newt Gingrich calling for immediate U.S.… Read the rest
Via the Herald Sun: The Iranian press is reporting that a group of Republican Guards on patrol outside of an underground nuclear enrichment plant discovered a “monitoring device” cleverly disguised as a rock. The device self-destructed when the guards attempted to remove it. This is only the latest in a string of incidences involving the use of high-tech devices to monitor, or in some cases sabotage, Iranian nuclear plants.
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Last week, the country’s vice president Fereydoun Abbasi said power lines had been blown up near the facility on August 17 in an attempt to sabotage Iran’s “peaceful” nuclear program.
But experts examined the rubble and found a device designed to intercept data from computers at the plant.
The accident signals the loss of an important source of intelligence for the West on Iran’s progress towards making a nuclear bomb.
It is not the first time a fake rock has been used for espionage.
Answer: When the US government says so.
When the Mujahedeen in Afghanistan were assassinating members of their government and the Russian troops dispatched to support it, they were, in Washington’s view, freedom fighters, even as their enemies branded them terrorists.
When they turned against an Afghan government imposed by the United States or revolted against a US invasion, they were once again branded terrorists.
When armed groups battling Khadafy’s government were supported by NATO, they were called freedom fighters. When some recently and allegedly turned violently against the United States, which is now dominating Libyan politics, they are once again castigated as terrorists.
And now, the United States Government through a decision by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has decided that the Iranian group Mujahedeen Khalq, or People’s Mujahedeen, that had been on the US State Department’s terrorist list for years, has now been taken off the list.… Read the rest
The term “October Surprise” is one that always triggers speculation in political circles.
It refers to some covert initiative that a candidates take in the month before the election to try to win an election.
Even as President Obama seems to lead in the polls, and the lead is slipping, the political race faces a number of unknowns including whether and how Israel may intervene more actively to force its political agenda on our political agenda.
According to Consortium News, this has happened before in an earlier US election:
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“A pressing foreign policy question of the U.S. presidential race is whether Israel might exploit this politically delicate time to bomb Iran’s nuclear sites and force President Obama to join the attack or face defeat at the polls, a predicament with similarities to one President Carter faced in 1980,” writes Robert Parry.
Using an exaggerated if fictive Iranian threat to create nuclear weapons as their pretext, Israeli politicians are blatantly and publicly inserting themselves in America’s Presidential elections, demanding that President Obama do their bidding by articulating so-called “red lines” to further threaten Tehran.
Until, now Israel has been content to mobilize its powerful lobby and media assets to apply pressure from the shadows, using political contributions and diplomacy of a covert type so that Tel-Aviv’s direct intervention could have plausible deniability. That is no longer the case.
The New York Times reports,
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“Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel inserted himself into the most contentious foreign policy issue of the American presidential campaign on Tuesday, criticizing the Obama administration for refusing to set clear “red lines” on Iran’s nuclear progress that would prompt the United States to undertake a military strike.