Hillary Mann Leverett Takes on America’s Liberal Hawks over Syria

In the wake of President Obama’s August 31 announcement that he would seek congressional authorization for military strikes against Syria—even though, in (former constitutional law professor) Obama’s view, he does not need such authorization to order an unprovoked attack against another state—Hillary went up against a panel of pro-Obama “journalists” and surrogates on MSNBC’s “Up With Steve Kornacki,” see here.  The eighteen-minute segment has gone at least moderately viral, with multiple Web sites reposting it under titles like “MSNBC War Cheerleaders Get OWNED by Hillary Mann Leverett,” “Lapdog Regime Journalists versus a Bona Fide Expert:  Watch the Sparks Fly,” and “Hillary Mann Leverett Is My New Hero.”  Or, as Huffington Post put it today, at the top of their media page, “Time for Class:  MSNBC Panel Gets SCHOOLED on Syria” and, at the top of the actual post, see here, “Hillary Mann Leverett, Middle East Analyst, Smacks Down MSNBC Panel on Syria.” 

It is not surprising, but still disappointing, how much the mainstream media are uncritically falling into line for the Obama administration’s highly questionable case for yet another illegal American war of aggression in the Middle East.  It is, of course, to be expected that unrepentant neoconservatives who have learned nothing from the enormous damage that their foreign policy project in the Middle East has done to America’s international position (not to mention millions of innocent human beings) over the last decade.  (For those who are interested, over the last few days Hillary has been paired with neoconservatives for discussions of the Syrian conflict and of America’s Syria policy on CCTV, see here, and Al Jazeera, see here.)  But most mainstream liberals and pseudo-progressives are no better, as Hillary’s encounter with some of them on MSNBC amply documents.    

–Flynt Leverett and Hillary Mann Leverett

 

603 Responses to “Hillary Mann Leverett Takes on America’s Liberal Hawks over Syria”

  1. masoud says:

    Well Done,

    They should have renamed the show “Down with Steve Kornaki!”

  2. Richard Steven Hack says:

    DM Dehqan also claims Iran provided U.S. with intel of Syrian rebel access to Sarin
    http://www.uskowioniran.com/2013/09/dm-dehqan-also-claims-iran-provided-us.html

  3. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Debunking Obama’s Chemical Weapons Case Against the Syrian Government – http://www.counterpunch.org/2013/09/02/debunking-obamas-assessment-of-the-syrian-governments-use-of-chemical-weapons/

    The real problem for Obama liberals is explaining how he can be “reluctant” to attack Syria and then fall for a massively fabricated “false flag” incident.

    So the question boils down to: Is he a LIAR (as I contend) or is he just STUPID?

  4. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Juan Cole proves he remains a “liberal interventionist”, claims that it’s absurd that the Syrian rebels would “gas themselves” and uncritically believes US intelligence.

    Juan Cole has officially “jumped the shark”…if he hadn’t already…

    Former Iranian President Slams Syria for Gassing own People: Sign of deep Divisions in Tehran
    http://www.juancole.com/2013/09/president-gassing-divisions.html

  5. Pirouz says:

    Wow.

    How do those folks even attempt to contest a former and more importantly honest National Security official during the Bush administration like Hillary? One adult intellect amongst three juveniles. The title of the YouTube video well describes the discussion.

    Really glad she was there on the panel, as I’m always heartened when I see the Leveretts on U.S. mainstream media.

  6. kooshy says:

    What a perfect place for a human rights court, like the right real state in LA, finding a good place for HR court is all about location, location, location

    “New pan-Arabic Human Rights court set up in Bahrain”

    The Kingdom of Bahrain has been chosen to host an Arab Human Rights Court. Activists predict that instead of protecting human rights the court would rather persecute those seeking civil society and prosecute tenacious leaders like Syria’s President Assad.
    The decision to place the new court’s HQ to Bahrain’s capital Manama was taken by the Arab League’s foreign ministers at a meeting in Cairo late on Sunday.

    http://rt.com/news/arabic-human-rights-court-bahrain-333/

  7. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Joyner and Fidler over at Arms Control Law continue to argue that it is legitimate to consider “exceptions” to the prohibition against states using military force against other states outside of self-defense, said “exceptions” intended to enforce prohibitions against the use of chemical weapons or other situations.

    I’d say it’s clear the advocacy, despite their protestations, is because, like all people including lawyers, they’d prefer to argue for the legitimacy of their own preferred outcomes. In this case, Joyner and Fidler clearly think Syria is guilty despite the weak evidence, and they believe it is desirable for the US intervene militarily. Thus they come up with these “thought experiments” about potential justifications.

    I consider this to be pathetic and Arms Control Law, like Juan Cole, has officially “jumped the shark” when it comes to credibility.

  8. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Listening to the video now…Josh Rogen gets it almost totally wrong, thinking that Obama is not connecting the dots of Iraq, Libya and Syria, and he continues to push the nonsense about Obama being “dragged into” this and being “reluctant”.

    It’s also amusing how stupid everyone but Hillary is about what Obama’s intentions are. They all assume that this is just going to be a “two day strike”.

    Not only is it not going to be a limited war, the entire purpose of this crisis is to lay the groundwork – the degrading of Syria and Hizballah – for an even LARGER war.

    But Hillary can’t really argue that point because it sounds like “conspiracy theory”.

    Once again the problem is what people can allow themselves to believe about the government that controls their lives.

  9. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Kerry opens door to U.S. ground troops in Syria
    http://news.yahoo.com/-obama-puts-twin-syria-sales-pitches-into-high-gear–152634247.html

    I don’t anticipate that. There’s no reason to do so if air power can take out enough of Syria’s missiles, aircraft and long-range artillery.

    Of course, air power can be strikingly ineffective at that task depending on the terrain and the smarts of the opposing power, as Kosovo showed. In that case, limited incursions of Special Forces troops might be necessary to take out specific targets. This occurred in Libya and is likely to occur in Syria as well.

    But I’m not expecting a full-scale invasion a la Iraq. There would be no advantage and a lot of downside for Obama’s domestic political situation from that. He’s going to need to cover himself before he HAS to use ground troops in the Iran war. And he will in that war because it will be impossible to keep the Strait of Hormuz open without landing ground troops on Iran’s coast.

  10. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Syria crisis: First CIA-trained rebel unit about to join fighting against Assad regime, says President Obama
    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/middle-east/syria-crisis-first-ciatrained-rebel-unit-about-to-join-fighting-against-assad-regime-says-president-obama-8796873.html#

    In other words, expect more “chemical weapons attacks” blamed on Assad because that’s what those units have trained in.

  11. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Air Force Chief: US Not Prepared for Syria Attacks
    http://www.airforcemag.com/Features/Pages/2013/August%202013/box082813syria.aspx

    This demonstrates two things:

    1) Obama doesn’t care because he has his orders.

    2) The Pentagon isn’t happy about this.

  12. Richard Steven Hack says:

    AIPAC in Full Court Press on Syria
    http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2013/09/03/aipac-in-full-court-press-on-syria.html

    So much for “Oh, Israel isn’t involved”…which always was bullshit.

  13. Richard Steven Hack says:

    AIA Congratulates Pritzker on Confirmation
    http://www.aia-aerospace.org/newsroom/aia_news/aia_congratulates_pritzker_on_confirmation/

    That would be the Aerospace Industries Association. Penny Pritzker is the one who financed Obama’s political career. See who works for who?

  14. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Raytheon shares hit record highs on Syria war talk
    http://money.msn.com/now/post–raytheon-shares-hit-record-highs-on-syria-war-talk

    And this shows why Prizker gets “congratulated”…

  15. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Obama hints at larger strategy to topple Assad in effort to win over Republicans
    http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/sep/03/obama-strategy-assad-republicans-syria

    What’d I just say?

    Note that I’m not saying Obama intends “regime change” in the classical sense. The real goal, I reiterate, is to degrade Syria so it is not a threat to Israel in an Iran war.

    But if Obama – that is, Israel – thinks it would be nice to have the Assad regime gone as well, then Obama will do it. As I said, Israel would love to have a bunch of idiot Salafists trying to run Syria – it would make Syria a failed state.

  16. Richard Steven Hack says:

    And more explicitly…

    US general says Syria action could be ‘more substantial than thought’
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/middleeast/syria/10282697/US-general-says-Syria-action-could-be-more-substantial-than-thought.html

    Quote

    General Jack Keane, a former vice chief of staff of the US Army, told BBC Radio 4 that he had spoken to senior Republican senators who had been briefed by the US president on Monday, and had been assured that Mr Obama planned to do significant damage to the forces of Bashar al-Assad.

    End Quote

  17. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Russia’s President Putin warns US over Syria action
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-23955655

    Quote

    According to a copy of the draft resolution obtained by AFP news agency, the senators wish to restrict the operation to a “limited and tailored use of the United States Armed Forces against Syria”, and bans the use of any ground forces.

    The measure to be voted on next week sets a time limit of 60 days on any operation.

    End Quote

    Of course, once the operation widens, that limit will be extended or abandoned all together.

    Quote

    He confirmed that Russia had delivered some components of S-300 missile systems to Syria but deliveries had now been “suspended”.

    And Mr Putin said it was “too early” to talk about what Russia would do if America took action without a UN resolution.

    End Quote

    Barely anything he can do…

  18. Richard Steven Hack says:

    This guy could be right…

    What is the next step in Syria? Will the US or Israel sink a US warship to get the war agenda back on track?
    http://whatreallyhappened.com/WRHARTICLES/nextstepsyria.php

  19. nico says:

    nico says:
    September 4, 2013 at 7:29 am

    Again Proof of western manipulation, lies and preplanned war with NO relation with HR, CW and WMD.
    It is war for dominance, tyranny, money and clash of civilization.

    Karl, is that Conspircay theory ?

    http://english.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13920613000664

    “”At the beginning of the war (in Syria over 2.5 years ago) the US defense undersecretary explicitly announced (to the Syrian officials) that if we had cut our relations with Iran, the war would have ended,” Syrian Ambassador to Iran Adnan Mahmoud said addressing a forum in Tehran dubbed ‘Syria, the Fortress of Resistance’ on Tuesday”

  20. Bussed-in Basiji says:

    fyi,

    We might be grown men, but it looks like you are of the weasel variation.

    I asked you two simple questions which you are incapable of answering. Shame, shame, shame! be qol-e khodet.

    After all it seems your just a patronizing blowhard not capable of “rationally” engaging anyone who might challenge your inflated self-image with a dose of reality.

    These are the questions that are left unanswered by you:

    1. What are the chances of Iran being annihilated in a conventional/unconventional attack in the next 7-15 years? You can change the time-frame if you like in your answer.

    2. How do define yourself religiously within the categories everybody else uses to identify religions?

    You claim that Iran needs unconventional/nuclear weapons to deter an attack. Good, OK fine. So tell us- in your opinion- what are the chances of an annihilating attack on Iran that warrants your claim? It’s a simple follow-up question to your “reasonable” initial statement.

    The problem is that you know that the probability of such an attack is less than- oh let’s say 5%- and that’s why you refuse to go there. Instead you talk of capabilities not intentions- which is bullshit.

    OK fine we’ll go with that as well for arguments sake, even though I explained to you that professionals with limited resources look to intentions not capabilities and amateurs like you and Pentagon officials with “unlimited” resources look to capabilities. But fine so given all your false premises are true- what are the chances of such an attack on Iran in the near future?

    Answer the question you weasel!

    Don’t lecture us about history or other shit like that. I’m asking you about YOUR beliefs which you are incapable of answering straightforward and honestly- like a grown man would.

  21. fyi says:

    Bussed-in Basiji says:

    September 4, 2013 at 8:53 am

    I respectfully decline to further discuss anything with you.

  22. Rehmat says:

    President Hassan Rouhani will certainly take issue on US-Israel bullying over Syria during his address at the upcoming UN General Assembly annual meeting in New York on September 26, 2013.

    Keeping with Ahmadinejad tradition, Tehran has announced that new Iranian president Hassan Rouhani will be visiting New York to address the 68th annual UN General Assembly (UNGA) and preside over the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) conference on Disarmament.

    http://rehmat1.com/2013/09/04/president-rouhani-is-coming-to-new-york/

  23. BiBiJon says:

    Karl Vic has an interesting post up

    “If, as a crucial ally of Assad, Tehran can help coax the Syrian dictator to amend his behavior — perhaps by a dramatic gesture such as surrendering its stockpiles of WMDs to a third party, like Russia — the implications would be immense.”

    Read more: http://world.time.com/2013/09/04/can-iran-victim-of-chemical-weapons-help-fix-the-syria-crisis/#ixzz2dwkNd0IA

    Personally, I think this was mooted at the Feltman meeting, which is why Ban Ki Moon, shed the butler suit and not only insisted UN inspectors complete their job, but also that proposed US military action against Syria sans UNSC resolution to be contrary to international law.

    Anyways, with Eastern Med. teeming with American & Russian warships, this wet fish of a General Secretary may yet pull off something to justify his salary.

  24. James Canning says:

    I continue to think Obama should be working with Russia to bring about a Syrian peace conference, with Iran attending it.

    Neocons virtually to a man (or woman) oppose Iran’s attending any peace conference. Would offer too many opportunities for American officials to talk to their Iranian counterparts.

  25. James Canning says:

    BiBiJon,

    Interesting proposal that you linked (for third part to take control of Syrian CW).

  26. BiBiJon says:

    Senator John McCain revealed he would table an amendment on Wednesday afternoon to introduce tougher language – describing a mission to “reverse the battlefield momentum” – to the proposed Senate authorisation of US military strikes.

    http://www.theguardian.com/world/middle-east-live/2013/sep/04/syria-crisis-putin-warns-west-live

    So, there you have confirmation that Juan Cole was lying, and Putin’s point is valid: why would Syria use CW when the war momentum is in her favor.

  27. James Canning says:

    Is John Kerry claiming al-Qaeda is not involved in the Syrian insurgency? Putin says Kerry is lying about this important fact.

  28. James Canning says:

    Question: would John McCain encourage Kerry to claim, falsely, that al-Qaeda is not involved in the Syrian insurgency?

  29. Smith says:

    Empty says:
    September 1, 2013 at 9:10 am

    Thanks for the reply. As you had put it earlier, for now we can agree to disagree. I still believe in credible nuclear deterrence and stable peace that it brings, and to which I stand by.

    I also want to comment on the reply you gave to Irshad in which you appear to have other reasons too for your opposition to nuclear deterrence beside the fatwa. I only wanted to point out that the scientific terms you used in that post are wrong and rather unscientific.

  30. Smith says:

    fyi says:
    September 4, 2013 at 9:39 am

    Bravo for putting up with such a foul language for so long. Even the most jahel wahabi does not use the low street language that you were replying to. It is amazing to see, that when confronted with superior logic, instead of countering it on equal terms or rather keeping quite, these people descend to such levels. Islam has quite clear message for such behavior. Our Prophet (PBUH) never used such language and discouraged it.

    I have a question for you on another matter of importance. IRI has been at war with God for a long time now. As you are aware, God clearly says that those who take part in usury and interests have declared war on Him directly. God does not even use this strong language even for mass murder, rape, kufr or shirk. So What are the chances of Iran stopping or suspending its war on God in the next 7-15 years? You can change the time-frame if you like in your answer. I mean, will we ever see IRI dismantling the menace of fractional reserve banking, fiat currency, using usury debt as money (Rial is an usury debt note), charging hefty interests on suspicious loans etc etc? Do you think the doctors of religion and economists in Iran have the capability to design a new monetary, accounting and banking system? Thank you.

  31. Fiorangela says:

    I’ve been working on a point-by-point comparison of the events in the run-up to the second world war as narrated by Lynne Olson in “Those Angry Days,” and the present events re Syria/Iran.

    This bulletin bulletin bulletin just flashed across the screen:

    “FROM THE WHITE HOUSE: MAP OF THE U.S. GOVERNMENT’S ASSESSMENT OF SYRIAN USE OF CHEMICAL WEAPONS.”

    http://www.c-span.org/uploadedFiles/Content/Documents/08302013Map.pdf

    Here’s the passage from “Those Angry Days” that I read just this morning:

    [the context is the battle between Isolationists–the America Firsters, and Interventionists, whose leaders included members of the Century Club in NYC, Wendell Willkie, magazine publisher Henry Luce. FDR is being pressured to strike down the Neutrality laws, but the America Firsters were gaining ground in opposing the bid …]

    Olson writes:

    “Fighting back, the president in his on October 27 [1941] speech made an announcement that jolted the country. He had in his possession, he said, a secret German map showing how the Reich planned to carve South America and much of Central America into five vassal states. He also spoke of a detailed Nazi plan to abolish all existing religions in the world, replacing them with an International Nazi Church. [substitute ‘Sharia law’ — ed.]

    The map mentioned by Roosevelt was in fact an outline of air traffic routes in South and Central America that featured a realignment of the area into four states and one colony, all under German rule. …

    Gen. George Marshall and others in the U. S. military were still greatly worried that a German force might one day e transported from the west coast of Africa to Brazil’s east coast and then northward to the Panama Canal. …[just that week] the Army’s War Plans Division had warned that the GErman threat to Brazil remained extremely serious.

    … Roosevelt’s revelation set off alarms in his administration and across the nation. Reporters clamored … to see the map. The president refused, saying that making it public would jeopardize its source, which he described as “undoubtedly reliable.”

    German officials, however, begged to differ. Four days after Roosevelt’s speech, Foreign Minister von Ribbentrop flatly denied the existence of such a map, declaring that both it and the document referring to the extermination of the world’s religions were “forgeries of the crudest and most brazen kind.” …

    For once the Reich was telling the truth; the map, as it turned out, was the creation of William Stephenson’s British Security Coordination. …BCS claimed that agents from its extensive South American network had intercepted a German courier and discovered the map in his dispatch case. In fact, it was a forgery, the product of a clandestine BSC unit in downtown Toronto called Station M, which had been assigned the task of fabricating letters and other documents.” pp. 402-403

    – – –

    That last bit, about ‘finding documents in a courier’s dispatch case,’ was used again by Ewan Montagu and his group of dirty tricksters in “Operation Mincemeat.” In that scheme, Montagu’s group actually acquired a cadaver, chained a briefcase to his wrist, and floated the corpse ashore off the coast of Spain, where they believed Spanish authorities would turn it over to German agents.

  32. Fiorangela says:

    “they have the intercepts!!” — Matthew Brodsky

    = = =

    http://turcopolier.typepad.com/sic_semper_tyrannis/2013/09/british-sigint-never-heard-kerrys-evidence.html

    British SIGINT at Troodos never heard Kerry’s “evidence”

    “The GCHQ listening post on Mount Troodos in Cyprus is arguably the most valued asset which the UK contributes to UK/US intelligence cooperation. . . . I have actually been inside all of this facility and been fully briefed on its operations and capabilities, while I was head of the FCO Cyprus Section in the early 1990s. This is fact, not speculation.

    It is therefore very strange, to say the least, that John Kerry claims to have access to communications intercepts of Syrian military and officials organising chemical weapons attacks, which intercepts were not available to the British Joint Intelligence Committee. . . .”

    [Craig Murray was British ambassador to Uzbekistan]

  33. Fiorangela says:

    Danielle Pletka on C Span Washington Journal this morning said Obama should destroy Assad’s airfields, command and control centers, fixed wing craft, even rotary aircraft.

    = = =
    cui bono?
    = = =

    https://faculty.biu.ac.il/~steing/arms/chem.htm

    Israeli Responses to the Threat of Chemical Warfare Published in Armed Forces and Society, Vol. 20., No. 1 Fall 1993, pp.85-101 Gerald Steinberg, Dept. Political Studies

    “Despite the peace talks, the possibility of war with Syria continues, and the Assad regime is still committed to achieving strategic parity with Israel, which will enable it to take on the IDF without the assistance of other Arab states.31 Confrontation continues in the Golan Heights, and although Damascus has acted prudently, concern about growing Syrian military capability continues. Syrian control in Lebanon has been extended and consolidated, and while tacit coordination has prevented accidental clashes and escalation, the prospects of war are still significant.”

  34. fyi says:

    Smith says:

    September 4, 2013 at 3:57 pm

    There are a number of issues:

    They can but before doing that they have to think about how the Quran relates to the idea of (Commodity) Production for a Market; the Market Economy.

    In a market economy, money is also a “Commodoity” with its own price.

    Quran is not against profit; it encourage trade and thus risk taking and getting a fair price for having undertaken an undertaking that entials risk.

    So, in my opinion, the issue is can “money” be rightfully considered a commodity, like say, shoes, or grain?

    On the expansive side, is the Quran putting injunction against exploitation?

    In US there are laws against ususry; interpreted to mean excessive interest – will that be adequate in a narrow interpretation of the Quran?

    More broadly, you can look at the Qaraz-al-Hasna experience in Iran; people stole the money (never returned it) or else used that institution for laundering drug money coming from Afghanistan.

    Furthermore, is fiat currency a form of usury?

    I think it is certainly a form of (indirect) taxation through inflation but is it usury?

    I do not think so but that is my opinion.

    Doctors of Religion cannot do this work unless they have a sound understanding of Economic Theory & History as well as Finance and Credit.

    I personally doubt very many have the necessary background but may be Mr. Unknown-Unknowns could shed some light on this since he has removed himself to Qum.

    [There is also a serious problem with encouraging savings.

    If you remove interest payments from savings account – even in a non-inflationary environment – and treat banks as venture-capital firms – then saving will dry-up; people will not put their money in the banks since their savings would not be savings, rather investment in potentially very risking ventures.

    Furthermore, would state pensions be considered a form of usury?

    I do not know the anser to that either but would like to hear others shed some light on this topic.]

  35. fyi says:

    Fiorangela says:

    September 4, 2013 at 4:46 pm

    The resumption of the so-called “Peace Talks” was part of Axis Powers coordianted effort at initiating war against Syria.

    There was no substance behind it.

    Next time that the Peace Talks are again initiated by the United States Government would be the war against Iran.

    No doubt on that.

  36. Fiorangela says:

    Kerry said yesterday in Senate speechifying that the proposed Authorization to Use Military Force would not be “war in the classic sense.”

    = = =

    In an appearance at University of Michigan’s Ford School, Michael Hayden, who was head of NSA on 9/11, told graduate students that:

    1. military activities since 9/11 have been carried out under AUMF, NOT a congressional declaration of war
    2. nevertheless, we were at war. Hayden said, “I listened carefully to Bush’s and Obama’s speeches; they said “We are at war.”
    3. Being at war legitimized the expanded wiretapping the NSA carried out at my direction
    4. The distinction is important to me personally because I am named in lawsuits relative to those activities.
    5. Hayden also said that NO president will ever again seek a declaration of war because that would place a limit on his/her power to act.
    http://www.c-spanvideo.org/program/Haydenon

    So, for Hayden, a war is a war if a president says it is a war.

    For Kerry, military aggression against a sovereign state is NOT a “war in the classic sense.” It’s just a military action of limited scope.

    So I guess collecting emails, gathering phone call metadata and expanding NSA surveillance is not legitimate under Kerry’s proposal.

  37. James Canning says:

    “Sir, I was surprised that you gave so much space to Tony Blair’s views on Syria (Aug 27). It is like having an arsonist advise on how to put out the fire he lit.”
    – – General Sir Michael Rose, letter to the Times (London) Aug 29

  38. James Canning says:

    “Of course such use [of CW in Damascus] is appalling and someone must be held accountable by the international court, but retaliating will only make the chaos across the Middle East ever more perilous.”
    – – Major-General Anthony Stone, in The Times (London) Aug 29

  39. Don Bacon says:

    Josh Rogin perpetuated the myth that Obama only likes war sometimes, and specifically that Obama was against the Iraq War. Not true.

    As a Senate candidate in November 2003, Sen. Obama said he would have ‘unequivocally’ voted against war funding because it was the only way to oppose Bush on Iraq. “Just this week, when I was asked, would I have voted for the $87 billion dollars, I said ‘no.’ I said no unequivocally because, at a certain point, we have to say no to George Bush. If we keep on getting steamrolled, we are not going to stand a chance.”

    Then Obama got elected and went national, with full-out war and $300 billion.

    Upon arriving in the Senate, Sen. Obama supported every funding bill for Iraq, some $300 billion, until he started running for President. [2005 Vote # 117, HR1268, 5/10/05; 2005 Vote # 326, S1042, 11/15/05; 2006 Vote # 112, HR4939, 5/4/06; 2006 Vote # 239; 2006 Vote # 186, S2766, 6/22/06; HR5631, 9/7/06]

    Obama also, in the Senate, teamed up with Hillary Clinton to pass a bill expanding the size of US ground forces.

    As president, in spite of Obama’s bogus Nobel, we have gained the full flavor of Obama’s love for war. Two days of cruise missile strikes on Syria? Not going for regime change? Are you kidding? Obama said similar things about Libya, including no regime change, but then he went for the whole enchilada and greatly exceeded the UNSC resolution. Obama probably won’t even have a UN resolution this time! No restrictions. Obama can be Obama, repeating what he has done in the past to destroy Iraq, Libya, and Afghanistan, and to destabilize other countries like Pakistan.

    Obama loves war, believing that only with an all-out war can he consolidate the bilateral support for his presidency that has heretofore escaped him. Even the Repubs are falling into line as a result of — think of it — a concocted chemical attack in far-off Syria. Amazing.

    So much for Josh Rogin and his wrong guess about what is in Obama’s mind. I think that when Rogin was rolling his eyes as HML spoke it was because she had given him the elbow. What do you think? At least I hope so.

  40. James Canning says:

    Fiorangela,

    Did Gerald Steinberg mean Syria in 1993 sought similar CW capability, to that of Israel (“strategic parity”)? Absurd to claim Syria expected to acheive overall “strategic parity” with Israel. And, in fact, Syria offered peace to Israel year in and year out.

  41. Fiorangela says:

    Josh Rogin on the “March Attacks”

    —->

    Amy Smithson, Senior Fellow at Nonproliferation Center, on C Span Washington Journal, Sept. 1, 2013: “I think the rebels might have been behind the first, small attacks, to bring attention to Assad’s chemical weapons arsenal.”

    Smithson offered this explanation why Syria and Egypt did not sign the Chemical Weapons treaty:

    “In the Middle East, the chemical weapons ban met complications because of Israel’s presumed nuclear weapons program. A number of countries, when the treaty was open for signature in ’93 would not sign. Some Arab states did, but Syria, Egypt did not, thinking they would offset Israel’s nuclear capability. **

    Dr. Smithson offered an argument that Assad used chemical weapons that was the equivalent of Professor Doctor Hillary Leverett’s rejoinder: “Assad was winning so he thought he’d gas his people just for fun.”

    http://www.c-spanvideo.org/event/223770

    **Recall that in 1995, the Egyptians and others in the region were persuaded to extend permanently the NPT on the promise that a conference would be convened that would include Israel, and would advance the notion of a nuclear-free Middle East. That promise has yet to be fulfilled.

  42. Don Bacon says:

    Yes, Syria has chemicals because Israel has nukes. The Arab League has been promoting the ME to be a nuclear-free zone for some time now, but of course the US won’t permit it, and it’s why the US now wants to destroy Syria’s chemical weapons deterrence based on the fabricated attack of August 21.

    The ideal solution would be talks toward a ME void of nukes and chemicals.

  43. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Obama dips toe in Syrian Rubicon
    By M K Bhadrakumar
    http://www.atimes.com/atimes/World/WOR-01-040913.html

    While this article is generally correct, notice how he STILL believes Obama is just now becoming “militarized” despite the evidence of Afghanistan, Libya, drone strikes worldwide, AND previous support for the Iraq war funding as mentioned above by Don.

    “Obama dips toe”? Seriously? He’s talking about GROUND TROOPS, for God’s sakes!

    The OBVIOUS take from the language of the expanded AUMF being proposed is to allow Obama to attack ANYONE ANYWHERE with the slightest (as the Professor says, “mere”) connection to Syria chemical weapons.

    This is “justification” for the US and NATO to join with Israel in attacking Lebanon, which I’ve said before is a real possibility.

    This is a deliberate attempt to expand the war BEYOND Syria and involve Lebanon and even Iran.

    Quote

    It [AUMF] authorizes the President to use any element of the US Armed Forces and any method of force. It does not contain specific limits on targets – either in terms of the identity of the targets (eg the Syrian government, Syrian rebels, Hezbollah, Iran) or the geography of the targets.

    End Quote

    He does ask this: “What explains the shift in Obama’s thinking? Or, has there been a shift at all and all we are witnessing is the unveiling of a hidden project?”

    You all know my answer: This was the PLAN from Day One.

    But he still hallucinates the following: “And, arguably, this legacy is being thrust upon him by friends and allies – and force of circumstances.”

    No, it’s not. He intended this all along. There can be no doubt.

  44. nahid says:

    Dear fyi

    http://www.hamshahrionline.ir/details/229855

    The big war is on the way, what do you say to this article.

  45. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Senate committee approves Syria attack resolution
    http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2013/09/04/senate-syria-committee-vote/2762415/

    Quote

    The Senate resolution would limit hostilities to 60 or 90 days, narrow military action to Syria’s borders and prohibit U.S. troops on Syrian soil. McCain’s proposal didn’t change that scope but urged that the end goal should be “a negotiated settlement that ends the conflict and leads to a democratic government in Syria.”

    End Quote

    So now it’s 90 days. And what happens if Obama decides to expand the war beyond Syria’s borders or send Special Forces troops into Syria? We all know Obama is going to ignore these limitations. And the Senate will back him regardless once the war is going because otherwise they’ll be accused of “not supporting our troops.”.

  46. James Canning says:

    John Kerry claimed that Israel “will be less secure” if the US fails to attack Syria. Rubbish, in my view.

  47. James Canning says:

    Don Bacon,

    Yes, the US very foolishly has failed to back the effort to have a Middle East free of nukes. Why? Israel lobby.

  48. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Did the White House Help Plan the Syrian Chemical Attack?
    http://www.globalresearch.ca/did-the-white-house-help-plan-the-syrian-chemical-attack/5347542

    You all know my answer to that one: Hell’s yeah!

  49. Richard Steven Hack says:

    From back in February…See who works for who now?

    Israel Grants First Golan Heights Oil Drilling License To Dick Cheney-Linked Company
    http://www.globalresearch.ca/srael-grants-first-golan-heights-oil-drilling-license-to-dick-cheney-linked-company/5347779

  50. Richard Steven Hack says:

    I like this title…says it all…

    Syria and “Conspiracy Theories”: It is a Conspiracy
    http://www.globalresearch.ca/syria-and-conspiracy-theories-it-is-a-conspiracy/29596

  51. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Timeline of Military-Intelligence Operation: U.S. Had Planned Syrian Civilian Catastrophe Since 2007
    http://www.globalresearch.ca/timeline-of-military-intelligence-operation-u-s-had-planned-syrian-civilian-catastrophe-since-2007/5348052

    Which makes perfect sense to me because in 2006, Dick Cheney was pushing for Israel to start an Iran war and Israel could not without taking out Hizballah in Lebanon. So Israel started the 2006 Lebanon fiasco. So in 2007, the idea came up to do something about Syria so Israel could attack Lebanon through Syrian territory…

    And once the “Arab Spring” appeared, it became the method to overthrow Syria. Libya was a “dry run”.

  52. Richard Steven Hack says:

    US Congress Lines Up Behind Drive for War Against Syria
    http://www.globalresearch.ca/us-congress-lines-up-behind-drive-for-war-against-syria/5348126

    Of course, they do. AIPAC is on the phones…

  53. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Unlike Kerry, Russia releases a 100 page very specific forensic report…

    Russia releases key findings on chemical attack near Aleppo indicating similarity with rebel-made weapons
    http://rt.com/news/chemical-aleppo-findings-russia-417/

  54. Don Bacon says:

    (Reuters) – A lack of international action to the chemical attack in Syria would risk sending Iran the wrong message over its nuclear program, France’s Prime Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault warned on Wednesday.

    Oh, really?
    I suspect that large-scale missile attacks on Syria would encourage Iran to consider the development of nuclear weapons as a deterrent. It works for North Korea.

    But a more significant message an attack on Syria might send to Iran, is that Iran should counter-attack immediately, perhaps with conventional weapons, or perhaps as it did in 1983.

    In October 1983 U.S. warships bombarded Lebanon. . . at a mountain village called Suq-al-Garb on September 19 and. . . the French conducted an air strike on September 23 in the Bekaa Valley.

    Within weeks, the U.S. Marine barracks in Beirut was blown up by a massive truck bomb that killed 241 American servicemen: 220 Marines, 18 sailors and three soldiers. The truck driver- suicide bomber was an Iranian national named Ismail Ascari whose truck contained explosives that were the equivalent of 21,000 pounds of TNT. Two minutes later a second suicide bomber drove a truck filled with explosives into the French military compound in Beirut killing 58 French paratroopers.

    The coordinated dual suicide attacks were reportedly supported, planned, organized, and financed by Iran and Syria.

    But of course the Congress while considering US military action as “sending a message” and “maintaining credibility” won’t be concerned with any possible return messages along those same lines, but it should be. People here aren’t that much different than people there, when it comes to messaging.

  55. fyi says:

    nahid says:
    September 4, 2013 at 7:05 pm

    I doubt that; I have not read any comments anywhere about 40,000 troops ready to fight in Syria that are in Jordan.

    I think the only state that could conceivably accomplish the ouster of Mr. Assad would be Turkey but she would need to keep her troops there for more than 20 years – more than 300,000 which will leave her exposed.

    And then who would pay for that occupation cost? Not Saudi Arabia when Turkey would be trying to install an MB government in Syria.

    I do not believe that power to break the “Resistance” exists in the area.

    I do not believe that Israel will attack Syria.

    I do believe that the response of the Resistance Alliance will be proportionate to the attack.

    My sense of it is that the Axis Powers are clearly without any political program or any “Day-After-Attack” plans.

    Very likely, they will shoot a few missiles and go home; they have botched their conspiracy.

  56. fyi says:

    Richard Steven Hack says:
    September 4, 2013 at 7:06 pm

    We will have to wait and see.

    The possibility, however, exists that US would still be fighting in Syria in 2017.

  57. fyi says:

    Don Bacon says:
    September 4, 2013 at 8:05 pm

    Yes, France & US took sides in the Civil War of Lebanon; siding with Christians against Muslims.

    Italian soldiers, who were true to their UN mandate and thus remained neutral, were not harmed.

    Now US and France are siding with extremists Muslims against everyone else – including the Christians.

    I suppose it makes sense in a nihilistic world of Power-is-Everything.

  58. Don Bacon says:

    The United Nations is apparently dead, dead, dead.

    The U.S. has not shared its Ghouta “evidence” with the UN, and will not seek UN authorization for the upcoming military attacks on Syria. Ban Ki-moon is trying to expedite the UN team’s report, but the US seems not to care. It won’t matter.

    Ban is now getting a taste of his true worth. The U.S. required and obtained Ban’s obeisance when the U.S. needed it, but now the UN is like a useless worn-out old shoe, and Ban is experiencing what it feels like to be cast aside. The U.S. had no respect for the weak Ban when he was a U.S. lap-dog, and it has none now.

  59. Don Bacon says:

    This could get interesting.

    MOSCOW — Russian President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday called U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry a liar, claiming he had denied that al Qaeda was fighting with the Syrian opposition in that country’s civil war.

  60. fyi says:

    Don Bacon says:

    September 4, 2013 at 9:42 pm

    Of course UN is dead.

    Like NPT.

    There is a detailed article on nuclear disarmament @ http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2013/09/03/think_again_american_nuclear_disarmament

    The gist of it is that the time for nuclear disarmament is paased.

  61. Don Bacon says:

    There are (or were) about 1,000 UN personnel of various agencies in Syria, and also thousands of Russians, plus other nationalities I suppose. But the air strikes will be surgical and will only destroy things and not people, they say. hah

    from Winslow Wheeler:
    This author has some experience with such prognostications. From 1992 to 1996, I worked with a team in the Government Accountability Office (GAO) to assess the effectiveness of the air war in Operation Desert Storm. It was not “one bomb one target;” for bridges, for example, it was an average of eleven laser guided bombs to make any bridge un-useable; for other targets it was more. Other data show that “precision” attacks on Saddam Hussein’s air defenses on the first night of Operation Desert Storm and on Saddam Hussein himself in Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2003 definitively failed to achieve the intended objectives and frequently missed their aim points.

  62. fyi says:

    Don Bacon says:

    September 4, 2013 at 11:17 pm

    And Mr. Kerry stated that Arabs are willing to pay for US to destroy Syria; the man has no shame and I do not understand why no American is taking to task for essentially saying that US is a Gun-for-Hire, a Mercenary.

    I guess US is too degenerated; “bread and circus”….

  63. Empty says:

    This is what they do while deciding to take actions that kill millions of innocent women, men, and children and demolish entire nations: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XwFWvsIx_U8

    It makes one truly sick.

    “When we will to annihilate a community, we install upon them corrupt leaders and present our just ultimatum to them; when they insisted on their corruption and became deserving of punishment, then we annihilate them.” [Translation/interpretation; Quran, Chapter 17 (Children of Israel), verse 16]

  64. Kathleen says:

    Hillary “the US has no responsibility to punish” Hillary’s passion and level of information rolls over the other panelist

    Kornacki “what happens if it does not stop chemical attacks by Assad” huge and deadly assumption by Kornacki.

    Heather Hulbert can not even look over at Hillary.

  65. nico says:

    About western degeneration

    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2013-09-04/americas-curse

    “The reason why bring this is up is that in light of recent very unpopular decisions by the US administration – the NSA spying revelations, the crackdown on free speech, the DOJ’s unwillingness to prosecute the “too big to fail”, the US involvement in yet another massively unpopular war – and the absolute lack of social response unlike in decades gone by, perhaps the reason behind America’s moral, economic and social decay is, more than anything, the unprecedented apathy among the general population.”

    While a agree with the article, that is only symptom not the root cause.
    The root cause is the social liquefaction of the western societies due to the “comfortable life” and the vanishing of moral with the slow and decades/century long death of religion.

    We live in a world of liars and unprincipled emasculated coward.
    A kind of Brit on this site is the best example.

  66. kooshy says:

    It’s a Noble achievement for our first black president

    A funny comment on WP’s usual ridiculous editorial

    “From Russia with Lovewrote:
    9/4/2013 9:53 PM PDT
    “Obama’s degradation: From *YES, WE CAN !* to *YES, WE SCAN !* to * YES , WE KNOW !* and *YES, WE BOMB”

  67. kooshy says:

    Kerry and his ketchup wife having cozy Dinner with new Hitler back in 2009

    “Kerry Labels Assad ‘Hitler’ Despite Dining With Him, British Sold Syria Chemical Weapons For Civil War”
    http://news.firedoglake.com/2013/09/03/kerry-labels-assad-hitler-despite-dining-with-him-british-sold-syria-chemical-weapons-for-civil-war/

  68. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Senators Authorizing Syria Strike Got More Defense Cash Than Lawmakers Voting No
    http://www.wired.com/threatlevel/2013/09/syria-war-authorization-money/

    Once again, it makes my case as to who really runs this country.

  69. Richard Steven Hack says:

    A good point…

    Supporting al-Qaeda a Week Before 9/11
    http://www.counterpunch.org/2013/09/04/supporting-al-qaeda-a-week-before-911/

  70. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Syria crisis: US pharmacies sell chemicals used to manufacture sarin
    http://voiceofrussia.com/news/2013_09_04/Syria-crisis-US-pharmacies-sell-chemicals-used-to-manufacture-sarin-9827/

    Get $130, kill ten thousand people…

  71. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Russia Warns Of Nuclear Disaster If Syria Is Attacked
    http://washington.cbslocal.com/2013/09/05/russia-warns-of-nuclear-disaster-if-syria-is-hit/

    There’s a small research reactor in Syria which could spread radiation if hit.

  72. Richard Steven Hack says:

    We Need to Talk About Prince Banda
    http://www.counterpunch.org/2013/09/04/we-need-to-talk-about-prince-bandar/

    He’s likely the guy behind the false flag chemical attack. But I don’t believe he’s working against Obama, but WITH Obama or at least parallel to Obama and the Israelis.

  73. Don Bacon says:

    fyi says:
    September 4, 2013 at 11:42 pm
    And Mr. Kerry stated that Arabs [i.e. Gulf States] are willing to pay for US to destroy Syria; the man has no shame and I do not understand why no American is taking to task for essentially saying that US is a Gun-for-Hire, a Mercenary.

    And unfortunately this panel discussion did not include any discussion of Saudi Arabia owning the main force of the “rebels” as well as owning Jarba, the US alternative to Assad. The panel compared Iraq to Syria mostly in US political terms, but this support of the anti-government forces by a Gulf power (or powers, including Qatar) was not mentioned. This outside support is a major difference between Iraq and Syria, and even extends to the offer of Saudi financial support that you mention.

    It’s like criticizing Saudi Arabia or even mentioning its name is forbidden — the “third rail” of the Syria conflict. (Even HML didn’t mention Saudi Arabia in this context.)

    Why shouldn’t the US attack Syria? For one thing, because Syria is now a regional conflict and the US shouldn’t take sides but rather seek a political solution that recognizes the wrongful Saudi interference in Syria’s domestic affairs, and seeks to end it.

    But Saudi Arabia can’t be touched, or even mentioned, apparently.

  74. fyi says:

    Don Bacon says:

    September 5, 2013 at 10:46 am

    So we have the Protestants Champions of Israel in US, the Jewish Champions of Israel in US, Israeli, the Hanbalis in Saudi Arabi, assorted Sunnis of various schools from eamong Arabs waging a war a against the Shia of Iran, Iraq, Syria, and Iraq as well as the allied religious minorities of Christians, Druze, Alewis.

    I should expect this war for Syria to last 20 years now.

    Let us watch as see how long it will take US to extricate herself out of this war.

  75. Don Bacon says:

    Transcript from yesterday’s hearing with the House of Reps on the Syrian attack authorization legislation:

    “Secretary of State John Kerry said at Wednesday’s hearing that Arab counties
    have offered to pay for the entirety of unseating President Bashar al-Assad if
    the United States took the lead militarily.

    “With respect to Arab countries offering to bear costs and to assess, the
    answer is profoundly yes,” Kerry said. “They have. That offer is on the table.”

    Asked by Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Fla.) about how much those countries would
    contribute, Kerry said they have offered to pay for all of a full invasion.”

    I guess it’s because the Saudis want to spread their religion there. (snark)

  76. Rehmat says:

    Haim Saban, the US-Israeli Jewish billionaire owns Germany’s mainstream media. Haim defines himself: “I’m a one-issue guy and my issue is Israel“. Saban is close friend of Ariel Sharon, Bill Clinton and Angela Markel. He practically owns Brookings Institute, WINEP and over dozen other so-called “unbiased” think tanks. In September 2012, Saban explained in the Time magazine that Mitt Romney’s unclear foreign policy simply doesn’t stand up to Obama’s firm support for Israel and that’s why he is endorsing and contributing ($1 million) to the Obama campaign.

    http://rehmat1.com/2013/09/05/berlins-jew-in-the-box-an-israeli-pr/

  77. fyi says:

    Rehmat says:

    September 5, 2013 at 11:47 am

    Yes, it is a (multi-) religious war over the Jewsih Fantasy Project in Palestine.

    Starting with the attack of Arab Christians and Muslims against European Jews in Palestine in 1920s, it has progressively gone throught a process metamorphosis from a struggle over land to a religious struggle; which has now directly sucked in the Protestant Christains of US, Canada, and UK.

    But as long as Axis Powers planners are unwilling to admit that they are in a religious war, there could be no progress towards a settlement.

    That would be the first necessary but not sufficient step.

    The second step is for the Axis Powers planners to accept that without using nuclear weapons against cities in the Near East, they cannot dictate the terms of the Peace that follows – inevitably – all wars.

    There is no indication of that among Axis Powers, war is their only policy with an almost infantile absence of planning for the ensuing peace.

    I want to observe that the Vatican actually seems to understand all of this and are doing what they can to prevent the expansion of the religious war.

  78. James Canning says:

    Financial Times today on its front page reports Putin’s statement that Obama is not telling the truth when he asserts al-Qaeda is not part of the insurgency in Syria. Putin of course is correct.

  79. James Canning says:

    fyi,

    I know quite a few Protestants in the US and the UK, and very few of them support Israel’s insane illegal colonisation programme in the West Bank.

    The heart of the matter is the illegal colonisation programme. Not “religious war”.

  80. James Canning says:

    Kooshy,

    Kerry dined with Bashar al-Assad (with wives of both men), in 2009, because Obama hoped to improve US relations with Syria. But Obama did not know how to achieve this, in face of opposition by Israel lobby.

  81. James Canning says:

    Kathleen,

    There are reports that the use of CW in Damascus was reprisal for attack on Bashar al-Assad in which a bodyguard popular with Assad’s childred was killed.

    Still no confirmation of who ordered the use of the CW. (Or which side, for that matter)

  82. James Canning says:

    Anyone notice that in Stockholm Obama went to a synagogue. Not to the Lutheran cathedral, but to a synagogue.

  83. fyi says:

    James Canning says:

    September 5, 2013 at 2:16 pm

    I suppose you mean the so-called mainline Protestant sects in US; Persbyterians and Episcopalians (Anglicans) which have been declining for years in numbers as well as influence?

    They are irrelevant; you have to look at the Evangelicals, Baptists, Methodists, (Dutch) Reformed Lutherans (the Chruch of White racists in South Africa).

    US has gained no benefit from her support for Israel; why does she persists?

    Because of the hold of Ancient Israel on the minds of these Protestant sects and their gold, in turn, on the machinary of state in the United States.

    This is a religious war par excellence and as long as people like yourself are denying it and search for a mythical Jewish Lobby it will not end.

  84. James Canning says:

    fyi,

    I do not think it is Protestant campaign finance that so distorts American Middle East policies.

    There is a large element of “knee-jekr” response, by American public, in “support” of Israel, due to a signifant degree to the presentation of Israel in news reports etc etc etc.

    I think the bulk of Israel lobby campaign finance comes from Jews.

  85. James Canning says:

    fyi,

    And yes, the decline of Anglican (Episcopalian) and Presbyterian power in the US, and the great rise of “Jewish” power, explains much.

  86. fyi says:

    James Canning says:

    September 5, 2013 at 3:35 pm:

    It matters not how we have arrived at this juncture; it is important to get out.

    Without admitting that there is a religious war, we will not get anywhere.

  87. Don Bacon says:

    SecDef Hagel lecturing China recently–

    Speaking to reporters following a courtesy call on President Aquino at Malacañang, Hagel said the US appreciates the Philippines’ efforts to solve the dispute with China through peaceful means.

    “In the meantime, we encourage nations to peacefully resolve their disputes through internationally accepted mechanism and in accordance with international law.”

    What a hypocrite.

  88. fyi says:

    Don Bacon says:

    September 5, 2013 at 4:19 pm

    People like him want to be what is often called “Players”.

    As a politician, he has learnt how to be so, just like Mr. Powell learnt how to be so.

  89. Fiorangela says:

    James Canning says:
    September 5, 2013 at 2:16 pm

    James, Presbyterians and Episcopalians, and many United Methodists and certainly Unitarians are sublimely unaware that there is any problem involving Israel.

    To put it bluntly, they are stuck on stupid and happy to be so.

    I attended a service in an Episcopal church in one of DC’s wealthiest enclaves the other day, as the debate over Syria was raging. The topic of sermon, and the buzz in the various groups, was the DC’s church’s mission outreach to Pittsburgh.

    Earlier this year the same church devoted a huge effort to collecting coats for children in Washington. An admirable program to be sure, but with their proximity to the Capitol and their wealth, and general level of (supposed) education and awareness, it seems to me their leaders have an obligation to make DC politicians hugely uncomfortable. They do not and will not because doing so involves risk, and requires breaking their own intellectual barriers.

    Jewish professors of Jewish history are keenly aware that Christians hold a sentimentalized, Sunday-school version of Judaism, Hebrew scripture and Israel, and those Jewish professors are delighted to keep it that way. Breaking the barrier = breaking down taboos, and risking important donors’ sensitivities.

    Several years ago a vestryman from the Washington Episcopal Cathedral, which used to be the ‘official’ church of WASP Washington, was struggling for funds to maintain its magnificent buildings. Shortly after that, an earthquake caused significant damage to the spires. If that were not enough of a ‘sign from god,’ a crane called in in the repair process toppled onto another building on the Cathedral’s campus and damaged that building! Shortly after THAT, the Cathedral began renting out its fields for Sunday morning football practice — that is what this grand old dame has come to.

    I can’t tell you how hopeful I find the fact that Pope Francis has come out four-square in opposition to anything other than non-violent negotiation with re Syria. Today, the National Catholic Reporter online, Roman Catholicism’s “liberal” media outlet, has eight or nine essays on the moral, legal, spiritual etc. aspects of America’s foreign policy from a Catholic perspective. This too is something of a shift: based on the comments sections over the years, Catholics are nearly as diverse — and dumbed down — in their opinions as is the general population. Jesuit Fr. John Dear is a consistent voice for peace, but until recently his has been a lonely voice. Francis has administered a much-needed shot-in-the-arm to the moral awareness core of Catholicism.

    Let’s hope that some Catholic public intellectuals emerge, and that they do not disgrace Catholicism as have ciphers such as Michael Hayden, Peter Wehner, Ed Royce, John Kerry. If ever there was a time when the Catholic bishops should make symbolic gestures like denying Communion to public figures, as was done to Kerry re his pro-choice stand, it is today, when Catholics tell lies that persuade others to wage wars that kill thousands.

    In the Catholic value set, pusillanimity is also a sin: for example, to cast a vote that is contrary to sound moral understanding because to do otherwise would be politically inconvenient, is a violation of Catholic principles. Yes, it puts politicians in tough positions sometimes — so what? Do we aspire to character or to prestige?

  90. Fiorangela says:

    In the run-up to and engagement in World Wars I and II, the churches — all of them, mainline Protestant, Roman Catholic, tent preachers like Billy Sunday, and Jewish leaders and rabbis could be counted to loudly support war as noble and patriotic.

    Effective, but ultimately unsuccessful, opposition to each of those wars could be found only in the military.

    The situation is only slightly different today: there are more “Billy Sundays” in the ring and it’s likely they will cheer for war — that is what Christian zionists were created to do.
    The Protestant establishment churches are in disarray.

    Roman Catholicism is just getting back on its feet after a bruising decade or three.

    All groups are scared stiff to confront Israel or its advocates’ plans to embroil US in a war — http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2013/09/03/aipac-in-full-court-press-on-syria.html

  91. James Canning says:

    “Military intervention [in Syria] is highly undesirable and highly imprctical.”
    – – General Lord Dannatt, former head of British Army (quoted in The Times Aug 23)

  92. James Canning says:

    Fiorangela,

    I hope National Cathedral is still center of WASP Washington.

    I think the replacement of Episcopalians and Presbyterians, by Jews, in so many areas relating to US foreign policy etc etc in the Middle East, is proving a very very bad thing indeed.

    But, as you note, John Kerry is a Catholic and look at what he is up to these days.

  93. James Canning says:

    fyi,

    I am quite ready to say the US very foolishly helps Jews oppress non-Jews in the West Bank. Some might view it as a “religious war”. Some others might see a gigantic scamming of the American public.

  94. Kathleen says:

    Yes James as Hillary and other experts have pointed out they do not know exactly who used these CW’s. Yet Kerry ready to act. Clearly Obama is not listening to Dempsey.

    Hillary Mann Leverett is one of my heroes, Been on the inside of the machine, witnessed the serious failings and comes out swinging for the truth and protecting human life on all sides. Thank you thank you Hillary.

    And good for Up for having her on. Just wish we could convince some of the other MSMer’s like Chris Matthews to have the Leveretts on. Been working on him for quite a few years…so far…nothing

  95. fyi says:

    Fiorangela says:
    September 5, 2013 at 5:26 pm

    Thank you for those comments that seem to have further substantiated my claims.

    So, just like the Iraq War, the United States is once again going against one of centers of Spiritual Authority on this planet.

    “How many divisions does the Pope have?”, quipped the late Marshall Stalin.

    “How many Drones does the Pope have?”….

  96. Rd. says:

    Don Bacon says:

    “SecDef Hagel lecturing China recently–
    …..
    What a hypocrite.”

    Not to be out done by Hagel, Robert Gates is now backing obama in Syria!!!!!

    Time to have their heads examined……

    on the other hand, some voice (Brent Scowcroft, Chris Hill) seem to be trying to walk back obama from abyss…

  97. fyi says:

    James Canning says:
    September 5, 2013 at 6:17 pm

    Let us hope that God will do something yet about the catastrophe we are about to witness.

    But a country that acts on the basis of “War is Cheap and Peace is Expensive” cannot endure; in my opinion.

  98. Fiorangela says:

    Steve Clemons did a stint on C Span Washington Journal on Sept. 3.

    http://www.c-spanvideo.org/program/CongresstheP

    28 min. into the discussion with moderator Steve Scully, a Washington Post article by Walter Pincus was on the table. Pincus’s article is explained by its title: Time to Show and Tell. Pincus named the evidence that administration claims it has that proves that Assad’s forces used CW, then stated that the administration must show the evidence to a skeptical public.

    Pivoting from Pincus’s argument, Scully asked, “If there is no credible evidence that Assad was behind the chemical attacks in Syria, then what for Congress?”

    Clemons did Brer Rabbit proud for two or three minutes before concluding:

    “So just to be quite blunt, Steve, if that were to happen and you were to have the evidence platform collapse that would be a horrible horrible moment both for US policy for this president and I think it would take us OUT of the global engagement game for a while.”

    In light of Clemons’s earlier firm declarations that the United States has the “responsibility to punish” and “must enforce the chemical weapons ban” as the world’s indispensable nation, it is curious that Clemons would say that if there is no credible evidence against Assad, the U.S. would abandon the field.

    If the U.S. has a “responsibility to punish” to “enforce the chemical weapons ban,” doesn’t that responsibility apply to whomever violated the ban on chemical weapons, and not just Assad’s government?

  99. Empty says:

    Fiorangela,

    Thank you for the series of informative comparative analyses (contemporary vs WWII) that you’ve been posting. I find them interesting to read.

    Regarding the church circles and the soft spot different Christian groups have for Israel, etc., I do not personally think these are wrong in and of themselves. I, for example, do not think that there is anything wrong to try to set up a community of believers based on teachings of the books, etc. Or even to have “a place” called Israel, etc. I think the problem arises when it is also believed that 1) any means is an okay means to achieve such goals (e.g., killing, destroying, confiscating lands, etc.); and 2) the actual goal is to take over and suffocate all other diverse communities. These, I think, are the problem not the actual affinity to want to establish a community based on shared values and understanding. The most important lesson that must be insisted upon with these groups is that “the end does not justify the means”. In the past, when I visited churches and spoke to “church goers” in the US, I have been able to advance in raising awareness when I used that rationale. People did not find such reasoning against their belief system. While dismantling the idea of the “promised land” is an uphill battle and not constructive.

  100. Empty says:

    I also think I used too many “etc.”….

  101. Avg American says:

    Thank you Hillary Leverett for holding the US idiots accountable and speaking out. It is so interesting regarding her specific description of the many unanswered questions about the chemical weapons and why were they fired from home- made rockets? etc. – I haven’t heard this info on US MSM.

    It’s so interesting to see the picture someone posted with Kerry and his wife and the Assad couple- I was wondering last weekend.. Assad’s wife seems like such a nice and intelligent woman with a lot of class – apparently she was an investment banker and went to university in London. This to me is not the kind of couple what the US is perceiving g them to be. Why can’t the US appreciate what the rest of the world is saying about “invading Syria?”.

    American complacency is real – where are the social responses in american society with re to Syria ?? There are none. The corporations ruling the country and american people are telling their subjects to shut up and do their work- no time for humanity and social response – that might cost you your job and your healthcare or maybe even your home. That’s where the American voice is – non-existant and silent.

  102. Fiorangela says:

    Thank you, Empty, for important insights (etc. s included).

    However, the “community of believers based on teachings” that you described made me think more of Quaker and Amish and Mennonite settlements and maybe even Mormons as they sought refuge in Utah in the U.S. There was an era when such social-religious experiments were numerous; Jews, especially Russian Jews in the Haskalah movement took part in that experimental era and migrated from Russia to many parts of the United States and set up “communities of believers based on teachings of the books.” In western Pennsylvania there is a museum in the buildings that were “Old Economy” religious settlements. The project failed because one of the tenets of the group was a prohibition on sexual activity. ooops.

    Zionism was quite a different project, as I understand it. It was always blatantly political. Zionists were used by the great powers to achieve the GP’s own interests, even as zionists played the great powers against each other to achieve zionism’s goals — i.e. Herzl tried to play the Ottoman sultan against Kaiser Wilhelm; Ruppin leveraged German systems and wealth against Turkish and Lebanese landholders; Weizmann bet on Great Britain against Germany; Weizmann and Herzl pitted Britain (Sykes) against France (Picot); after Weizmann gained the Balfour grant from Britain, Ben Gurion worked to sunder British control of the Palestine mandate — successfully, and also violently. Perhaps the same rationale applies to such political settlements as to “communities of the book” — or settlements like “little Italy” in Baltimore or Chinatown in New York (people of the food??) — as you pointed out, they are appropriate so long as other people’s rights and cultures and “community of the book” are not thereby eradicated.

    You’re right on target in counseling that “dismantling the idea of the promised land” is an uphill battle. One should not ever seek to tear out the glue of a community, and belief systems function in that way.

    However, that raises another aspect of zionism that is troubling: I call it the Estherine doctrine. The essential thing to recognize about the Esther story is that she had access to a “community of the books” but she chose to remain in Persia. While in Persia, she demanded the same rights to control that community as if she were in her own “community of the book.” I find that offensive — a pulling apart of the glue that holds another culture together — and I also think it is a hallmark of the zionist movement. Benjamin Netanyahu confirmed that opinion in Washington in March 2012 when he bookended a speech with the declaration that “Jerusalem is the eternal home of the Jewish people,” and the claim that “Esther was the heroine who defended Jews from Iranians who tried to kill them — Iranians have been trying to kill Jews from the very beginning.”

  103. Empty says:

    Fiorangela,

    I call it the Estherine doctrine. Good one. I’ll use this in the future. I used to call it “Estherine tactic” [use of a Jewish woman as a sexual tool of entrapment to advance a political agenda; like in Esther with Khashayar; Monica Lewinsky with Clinton; Tzipi Livni with Arab kings and amirs] but I like your explanation better.

    In the Esther’s case (if true….but we are assuming their own accounts of things are what really happened) too, the parts I object to are: 1) using a woman as a sexual tool and under false identity (remember that Esther did not initially reveal to the king that she was a Jew) to deceive, blackmail, and infiltrate the system; 2) using lies, deception, and fabricate documents to implicate Hamoun and his sons; 3) manufacturing documents that the genocide of jews were being planned; 4) killing more than 70,000 people and taking over their homes and getting the ownership of their possessions; 5) attempts at eradication of all other groups….and so on.

    Well, I guess you’re right. I object to the entire doctrine.

    As I mentioned long ago, I find Zionists to be like the Ebola virus.

    http://www.raceforiran.com/john-mearsheimer-lays-out-the-costs%E2%80%94strategic-and-otherwise%E2%80%94of-america%E2%80%99s-quixotic-for-global-hegemony#comment-30867

  104. Jay says:

    U.S. intercepts Iranian order for attack on U.S. interests in Iraq -report
    http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/09/06/us-syria-crisis-usa-iran-idUSBRE98504120130906

    “Them silly Iranians”, the NSA chief was heard mumbling — “they know that we listen to every piece of their communication and decrypt it on the fly, yet they still went ahead and issued insecure orders so we can conveniently intercept them”, he continued.

    The NSA official went on to explain that the intercept also contained instructions for the Iranians to sell the Golden Gate and the Brooklyn Bridge as a package deal in order to disrupt the US economy and cause loss of jobs. The intercept is part of a major NSA operation code named Bull-shezam! The NSA chief suggested that Mr. Kerry and Mr. Powell may present the evidence as a duo in an upcoming special – as soon as the theme music for the event has been decided on.

    Yep, it all make sense now!!

  105. tennessee williams says:

    The United States of America will gradually find itself in a very difficult world that weapons and wars are not the answer but good diplomacy is the solution. For example, Thomas Jefferson won without war huge territory through diplomacy, the greatest victory from an idiot militarist, Napoleon Bonaparte who was only thinking in terms of warfare. The United States was full of people who wanted war with Napoleon. But Thomas Jefferson quickly found Napoleon’s weakness for warfare and he quickly persuaded him through diplomacy that he can reach his goal right on his own continent and there was no need to come all the way to America for war when all he needs is more money to wage a more expensive war with the common enemy. Napoleon was shown both options for war with America and Gold. He took the gold.

    The United States is facing an enormous challenge if it acts like the Napoleon of the twenty first century. Jefferson bloodied Napoleon in the Caribbean to make him believe that his army will be going to war with “savages” and it is below Napoleon dignity to even fight with the “savages”. Jefferson diplomacy persuaded Napoleon to go for a civilized trophy war. If Jefferson had gone to war with Napoleon over Louisiana territory or New France as Napoleon called it, probably the United States would be so weakened that Britain would dismantle USA, the new nation easily. It was a great diplomacy by Thomas Jefferson that navigated the United States through a mortal threat!! Without Thomas Jefferson diplomacy, the United States would have vanished in the 1820s Britain invasion of America!!!

    Here we are two hundred years later, and we are , American leaders are acting like an idiot Napoleon who wants to be the “emperor” of the world. Today, It is China, a rising great power like the United States of Jefferson, joins Russia in saying lets get Napoleon by offering the militarist more opportunity to wage war through their own Caribbean assistance to the “savages”. China is acting exactly like Jefferson, staying out of war but making sure Napoleon gets his war that is blinding it with glory. China even is waving gold in front of the Napoleon to tell him , here is the gold and go do your war and all we are asking is to stay out of our Pacific, ooops, New Orleans. Again two hundred years later, we can only admire Thomas Jefersson Diplomacy and hope we do not end up as Napoleon of our time. Sadly for France, but joyous for America, Napoleon served his purpose to pave the way for a great power. Tragically for us Americans, we are living under the rule of our Napoleon. Are we not the France of Napoleon when the United States of Jefferson (China) can launch a 60 ton space station all on its own and finance our wars at the same time!!

  106. Fiorangela says:

    Empty, the ebola comparison is apt but chilling.

    In his appearance on C Span, Steve Clemons made some remarks about Russia and Putin that I found ill-informed and “ego-based” — the wrong phrase, perhaps, for what I’m trying to express; namely, that Clemons assessed Putin’s and Russian actions based on his own ideological system.

    George Kennan contributed at least one important element to Cold Warriorism: he was a student of Russian literature, which he read in the original language. He urged policy makers to try to understand Russia from its own cultural basis.

    I know next to nothing about Russian/Eastern/Byzantine Orthodox Christianity, other than that Russian peasants are deeply religious people. Furthermore, having emerged from the same religio-political milieu, Eastern Orthodoxy, like Roman Catholicism, has a central ‘command and control’ system, in contrast to Protestantism, which has numerous, man-based interpretations of the “community of the books.” Finally, Roman Catholicism and Eastern Orthodoxy are “original” systems; Christianity as expressed from the British Isles, or Northern Europe, or Asian nations are the result of conversions through the ministries of men who held their own, sometimes quirky, ideas of what Christianity was all about. See, for example, Japanese Master Ryuho Okawa, founder of the Happy Science movement based on ideas of Edgar Cayce. http://eng.the-liberty.com/about-us/ In my experience, converts are like abandoned hatchlings that are susceptible to imprinting the behavior of the first creature that offers them food — even if it’s a dog (tho I’ve never heard a robin bark, so maybe the analogy needs some work).

    The point is, it would probably be a good idea to study Russian Orthodoxy and its possible influence on the policymaking of Russian leaders, rather than analyzing Russian behavior from the viewpoint of the Judeo-Christian system wherein that hyphen transmitted ebola.

  107. James Canning says:

    In his column in the Financial Times today, Philip Stephens reminds us of Washington’s refusal to accept mediation of the Iranian nuclear dispute by Brazil and Turkey. He suggests this failure contributed to the instability we see today in the Middle East.

  108. James Canning says:

    Fiorangela,

    We have Greek Orthodox, Russian Orthodox, Serbian Orthodox, Rumanian Orthodox, etc. churches. I don’t think they have the same central control as obtains with the Pope in Rome for Roman Catholicism.

  109. James Canning says:

    Fiorangela,

    Some of the British Christian leaders wanted Britain rather than France to take control of Palestine, due to concerns the French would favor the Catholics to the disadvantage of the Protestants.

  110. Rehmat says:

    @fyI

    Thanks for misquoting me a usual – but the great majority of European Jews occupying Palestine are not religious. They’re mostly atheists and the best antisemites.

    Yehezkel Kaufman in article, titled “The Ruin of Soul” collected quotes from some of the Zionist writers (Frishman, Lenni Brenner, Berdichevsky, AD. Gordon, Schawadron, Klatzkin, Pinsker, Israel Joshua Singer, Chaim Kaplan, etc.), which if repeated on air – would get you fired from CNN, BBC, CBS, etc.

    http://rehmat1.com/2010/11/21/anti-semitic-roots-of-zionism/

  111. James Canning says:

    fyi,

    My gut feeling is that Obama has listened too much to the argument Iran will be tempted to try to build nukes if the US fails to attack Syria.

    I have trouble believing Obama actually fears that chemical weapons would be more likely to be used against Israel if the US fails to attack Syria. He may be pretending to believe this.

    I continue to wonder if Chuck Hagel actually thinks Japan and South Korea would seriously question US support in a crisis, if the US fails to attack Syria.

  112. fyi says:

    James Canning says:

    September 6, 2013 at 1:06 pm

    I think, based om Mr. Obama’s statements in the 3rd presidential debate – setting the red-line at Iran’s break-out capability – the in 2014 Mr. Obama will likely attack Iran.

    If US attack Syria, and she gets bogged down in Syira in another unwinable war (as I expect), then 2014 would be the best opportunity for Iran to declare that she will leave NPT unless certain conditions are met.

    There is no strategic ambiguity in Mr. Obama’s position vis-a-vis the Resistance any longer.

    Iranian planners, in my opinion, must proceed with the assumption that US will attack Iran either under Mr. Obama or the president after him.

  113. James Canning says:

    fyi,

    I do not think the US will impose a blockade on Iranian oil exports by sea unless Iran stockpiles too much U< pursues the plutonium programme, gets too many centrifuges online, etc. I very much doubt a direct attack without further sanctions.

  114. James Canning says:

    fyi,

    I do not think Obama would be so stupid as to put US troops into Syria.

  115. fyi says:

    James Canning says:

    September 6, 2013 at 1:38 pm

    Your statements, as well as those Mr. Obama during his 3rd presidential debate on Iranian break-out capability , are very ambiguous and therefore good execuses for initiating war by Mr. Obama.

    In my opinion, Mr. Obama very likely will attack Iran in 2014; even if he is thwarted on his attack on Syria.

    Middle America hates Islam and hates Iran, they will follow Mr. Obama to Hell on that.

  116. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Syria crisis yet to derail Iran nuclear talks
    http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Middle_East/MID-04-060913.html

    People keep hallucinating that there will be a diplomatic resolution to the nuclear crisis…

    Colin Kahl has no interest in resolving the nuclear crisis and neither does Obama. Nothing whatever will be achieved regardless who the negotiator is on the Iran side.

    Obama intends to attack Syria, allow Israel to attack Lebanon, and once Syria and Hizballah are out of the way (if possible), attack Iran (or allow Israel to attack Iran and then join the war.) End of story.

    And with the nonsense about 2014 and a bogus “inability to detect when Iran goes for a nuke”, you can see what the schedule is: they need to get Syria out of the way this year which explains Obama’s haste, since it will take months to do that, and more months for Israel to deal with Hizballah. So it will be late in 2014 or 2015 at the earliest before they can commit to attacking Iran.

  117. nico says:

    fyi says:
    September 6, 2013 at 1:43 pm

    Are you surprised by Mr Canning statement … ?

    More seriously, what is your take regarding Turkey policies ?
    Turkey has common border with Russia and Iran.
    Turkey receives nearly 100% of its hydrocarbon from Iran, Russia and Azerbaidjan.
    In case of conflict in the region Turkey will be the first to suffer.
    Do they truly believe they will gain something out of this ?

  118. fyi says:

    nico says:

    September 6, 2013 at 2:52 pm

    I think that they were promised a quick victory in Syria – jsut like Indians/South Koreans/Japanese/South Africans/EU were promised a quick victroy against Iran.

    Now that victory is out of sight, escalation is their only choice; having burnt all bridges for retreat.

    I think you need to salute the diplomatic prowess of US Diplomats; they convinced these states to go against their core interests and harm themselves in the process.

  119. Richard Steven Hack says:

    “The Obama doctrine – Yes We Scan, Yes We Drone – reached a new low with its Yes We Bomb” – Pepe Escobar

    Dogs of war versus the emerging caravan
    http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Middle_East/MID-05-060913.html

    Quote

    Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Martin Dempsey: “The answer to whether I support additional support for the moderate opposition is yes.”

    Senator Bob Corker (R, Tennessee): “And this authorization will support those activities in addition to responding to the weapons of mass destruction.”

    Dempsey: “I don’t know how the resolution will evolve, but I support – ”

    Corker: “What you’re seeking. What is it you’re seeking?”

    Dempsey: “I can’t answer that, what we’re seeking

    End Quote

    Of course he can’t. He KNOWS, he just can’t admit what they’re seeking.

    Quote

    The inestimable Vijay Prashad, author of The Poorer Nations, has been using his calculator:

    Exhibit A: Saudis have put ”on the table” their offer to pay for the entire US assault on Syria. Exhibit B: in case of an attack on Syria, the price of oil is slated to go from $109 to $125 per barrel (base case scenario), with an upside scenario of $150 per barrel. Saudi Arabia will produce 9.8 million barrels of oil a day. Which means if the spike is only the base case scenario, Saudi will gross a super-profit of $156.8 million per day. If it is the upside scenario, then the Saudi super-profits will be $401.8 million per day. Not a bad arbitrage game from Mr Bandar and his gang of Saudi “democrats”.

    End Quote

    Quote

    The chance to isolate Hezbollah, allow a new Israeli invasion of southern Lebanon, open the (lethal) road to Tehran.

    End Quote

    Maybe Pepe is finally getting the idea with his reference to Lebanon…

  120. nico says:

    fyi says:
    September 6, 2013 at 3:05 pm

    “I think you need to salute the diplomatic prowess of US Diplomats; they convinced these states to go against their core interests and harm themselves in the process.”

    My take is that Turkey and India will be the ones to strategically lose the most out of their inept foreign policy.

  121. fyi says:

    nico says:

    September 6, 2013 at 3:23 pm

    They have already lost both tactically and strategically.

  122. Bussed-in Basiji says:

    fyi,

    You can respectfully shove it…respectfully. No really, I mean it, “respectfully”.

    There is nothing “respectful” about you when I ask you a reasonable follow-up question- which is pertinent to your argument- and you refuse to engage it because you know it will make your bombastic and shrill arguments look- well “less good” (was that respectful enough?).

    I will take your refusal to state your estimate as concession that the probability of an “annihilating attack” is less than 3% in the next 7-15 years.

    For this you want Iran to invest ten of billions in the build-up and maintenance of a nuclear weapons stockpile and ICBMs- not to mention the all the other political and economic costs that this brings.

    Not to mention that using nuclear weapons against other human beings is really shitty thing to do. Oh yeah, I forget, as a devotee of the west doing shitty things to others is OK with you as long as it achieves one’s goals (cue irrelevant story about Mongol invasion of Iran).

    All this when you have no clue about the actual and real deterrent capabilities of Iran and the fact that US and UK actually and really are deterred by whatever it is that the Iranians are telling them.

    I’m sticking with my assessment of you: You are clueless about Iran’s real capabilities and you try to goh-mal this major gap with irrelevant historical analogies. You see this actually and really makes a blow hard who can’t handle when somebody challenges your dreamworld which you have spun for yourself over the last 40 years with same “real” facts. In Farsi this is called “koskhol”.

    Respectfully.

    As far as your “religion” let me state that if you insist that you (and everybody on earth is a “muslim” (small “m” and as an existential state) than of course you are right. But that wasn’t my question to you, genius. Of course we are all “muslim” and unfortunately you thought when reading the Quran that when the Quran states this that this is referring to “Muslim” (capital “M”) the noun describing adherents of the Quran and the Sunnah of the Final Prophet (sawas).

    In other words, despite your erudition and breadth of knowledge you made a basic freshman mistake (refer to “blow-hard/dreamworld” section above). Hey it can happen to all of us.

    Bebin, you put the words of trinitarian priests above the word of the Prophet (sawas), you saw things like: would have been better for the Prophet to ignore the revelations and led a quiet life…well, well, well…

    It seems I was to lenient with you saying you are an “unorthodox” Muslim. You are not a Muslim, because no Muslim would say such things. But like I told you, there is nothing wrong if you have “moved on” from Islam or if you decided that von Balthasar and Ratzinger and et al. are closer to the Divine “logos” than the Quran. Just say it azizam, your safe sitting behind your keyboard, no evil basijis to force you to go pray five times a day at the mosque.

    You can listen to your Pink Floyd (which one was it that they took, “Dark Side of the Moon” or “The Wall”- my favorite is “Shine On You Crazy Diamond”- Dave Gilmour is such an underrated guitarist, really!) and enjoy “the comfortable life” and “honestly” tell me what your inner voice tells you.

    You’re not a “Muslim”, you “hate” Iranians and you have spent- now years- lecturing us about what’s wrong with Iran and how to save Iran. Like I said- “koskhol”.

  123. James Canning says:

    fyi,

    We still do not know who ordered the use of CW in Damascus recently.

    It is possible that this use was a sensational blunder by the Assad gov’t.

  124. Richard Steven Hack says:

    US destroyers ‘fully ready’ for Syrian action as Pentagon ‘considers doubling firepower’
    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/us-destroyers-fully-ready-for-syrian-action-as-pentagon-considers-doubling-firepower-8800849.html?printService=print

    Quote

    The four destroyers between them have the ability to launch 40 cruise missiles…

    End Quote

    That figure makes no sense. The last figure I saw was “hundreds”…I suspect it’s a typo and each destroyer probably has 40 cruise missiles, not 10 each. According to Naval Technology.com, Arleigh Burke class destroyers have 55 Tomahawk missiles each.

    Reuters FACTBOX – If U.S. strikes Syria, destroyers likely to deliver the blow (Google for link I can’t include here)

    …states the destroyers can carry up to 90-96 cruise missiles, with the mix depending on its operational needs.

    There are also four specifically designated guided missile submarines capable of carrying up to 154 missiles apiece. Presumably at least one of those subs is in range of Syria, and my guess is at least two will be for a Syria strike. Submarines are the best way to attack a coastline which has anti-ship missiles of its own.

    With the addition of the Nimitz carrier group being moved, it is clear that, contrary to the Reuters piece, Obama intends a wider strike than just cruise missiles.

    The reality is that cruise missiles can be shot down by at least some of Syria’s air defenses. It is likely that at least some air defense suppression will have to be done even with a ‘limited strike”. And the evidence is that Obama intends a bigger strike than that.

  125. James Canning says:

    fyi,

    “Middle America hates Islam and hates Iran”? Most “middle Americans” cannot find Iran on a map.

  126. James Canning says:

    fyi,

    What is “ambiguous” about my statements? I have been very clear I would expect further sanctions against Iran, prior to any attack. And I expect such sanctions would include a blockade of Iran’s oil exports by sea.

    You have been a bit “ambiguous” about whether you think Iran would attack US ships.

    I think Iran would have no chance of building nukes on the sly.

  127. Richard Steven Hack says:

    And more proof that Obama intends a much wider strike…

    Pentagon Is Ordered to Expand Potential Targets in Syria With a Focus on Forces

    Quote

    Mr. Obama, officials said, is now determined to put more emphasis on the “degrade” part of what the administration has said is the goal of a military strike against Syria — to “deter and degrade” Mr. Assad’s ability to use chemical weapons.

    End Quote

    What have I said all along? “Degrade”, right?

    Quote

    For the first time, the administration is talking about using American and French aircraft to conduct strikes on specific targets, in addition to ship-launched Tomahawk cruise missiles. There is a renewed push to get other NATO forces involved.

    The strikes would be aimed not at the chemical stockpiles themselves — risking a potential catastrophe — but rather the military units that have stored and prepared the chemical weapons and carried the attacks against Syrian rebels, as well as the headquarters overseeing the effort, and the rockets and artillery that have launched the attacks, military officials said Thursday.

    Gen. Martin E. Dempsey, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, has said that other targets would include equipment that Syria uses to protect the chemicals — air defenses, long-range missiles and rockets, which can also deliver the weapons.

    End Quote

    In other words – any weapon that could strike Israel would be targeted.

    Quote

    The bulk of the American attack is still expected to be carried out by cruise missiles from some or all of the four Arleigh Burke-class destroyers within striking range of Syria in the eastern Mediterranean. Each ship carries about three dozen Tomahawk cruise missiles, a low-flying, highly accurate weapon that can be launched from safe distances of up to about 1,000 miles.

    But military planners are now preparing options to include attacks from Air Force bombers, a development reported Thursday by The Wall Street Journal. The Pentagon was initially planning to rely solely on cruise missiles.

    End Quote

    That confirms the typo in the other story: EACH destroyer carries nearly 40 cruise missiles, not 40 between them.

  128. James Canning says:

    fyi,

    I think an Iranian effort to build nukes would ensure a US attack.

    I take it you too see as rubbish Chuck Hagel’s contention the US needed to attack Syria in order to keep South Korea and Japan confident in US gurantees.

  129. Bussed-in Basiji says:

    smithy-joon,

    As always you are too smart for your own good. Sorry, but I am forced to rip you a new a-hole now…

    OK, first of all, shar’an there is no problem for you or me as a citizen/consumer/muqalid in using the current banking system because it has stamp of the doctors of religion- they have to answer in the next world- not me and you. You see that’s what makes real Jafari usuli school so awesome and your wahabi Shia version so shitty. I’ll stick with Rahbar on this one (as well as on the whole atom bomb thing, OK?- respectfully)

    Now given that you have an IQ 147, it could be that you are also a mujtahid (in addition to all the other things you are an expert on) and you are free to issue your own fatwa on this matter and it is wajib on your muqalids to follow your ruling on this. What? No, you’re not a mujtahid? Oh OK…

    As an individual you are free to do ihtiyat and not operate in the current banking system- who know just in case- so that you can adhere to the super-pure strain of Shia Islam that you follow. Just, please pray for us less intelligent and fortunate so we can be as pure as you.

    Also, like I told you, I sincerely recommend you get off your smart ass and actually go do something and gain some “real world” experience. Your smart, pick a place you like- research, military, industry- somewhere. This my young brother will REALLY help your credibility. Because you see- despite your obvious innate intelligence- you have very little credibility at the moment.

    Also, a bitter reality if you are in Iran and are dealing with Iranians- as long as you are single and don’t have any children- no effin credibility. Yalla, get going on this one.

    Also, you remind of the guys in my youth you then suddenly ended being brainwashed by Rajavi and starting fighting Imam (r). Super-religious, super-smart, super-koskhol. Relax a little, go get laid with some older widow, I dunno do something, just chill out little.

    Always remember that it was the “followers” of Imam Ali (as) Imam Hassan (as) and Imam Hussein (as) that broke their hearts the most. Listen to your vali which is the SL currently and work to build the IRI as a muqaddame and bastargah for the zuhur of the Big One (aj).

    You claim to be a Shia Muslim and yet are enamored by a person who be rahati says that the Prophet (sawas) should not have listened to the revelation and lived a quiet life instead. This is not good azizam. Yekam dar morede khodet fekr kon. Following this path of “koskholiat” will not get you anywhere.

  130. nico says:

    Bussed-in Basiji says:
    September 6, 2013 at 3:42 pm

    “I will take your refusal to state your estimate as concession that the probability of an “annihilating attack” is less than 3% in the next 7-15 years.”

    My feeling is that the chance for Tehran to be nuked by the US if things were to go very wrong (let say in the event of blockade of the SoH) is near 100%.

    Once Tehran is nuked and maybe Qom or Ispahan then Iran will be pacified like Germany or Japan.

    My take is that it is the US end game.

  131. Fiorangela says:

    James Canning says: September 6, 2013 at 12:57 pm

    “Some of the British Christian leaders wanted Britain rather than France to take control of Palestine, due to concerns the French would favor the Catholics to the disadvantage of the Protestants.”

    + + +
    from “Weizmann and the Balfour Declaration,” Leonard Stein, 1961

    “The end of the year 1916 marked … a turning point in the events leading up to the Balfour Declaration. Lloyd George, a convinced pro-Zionist, became Prime Minister, selected Balfour as his Foreign Secretary, and brought into his War Cabinet Lord Milner, who soon became a strong and highly influential supporter of a pro-Zionist policy. … Zionists now had firm friends in control of the central direction of the War.
    Nor was it a question of abstract sympathies. Lloyd George was, and had long been, a strong advocate of an aggressive strategy in the East. Looking further ahead, he was emphatically of the opinion that British interests required that, in the post-War settlement, Palestine should, if possible, be brought into the British sphere, to the entire exclusion of the French. The formation of the Lloyd George Government was closely followed by preparations for a large-scale British invasion of Palestine, and, with an eventual British occupation foreseen, some arrangement whereby the Zionists would be encouraged, after the War, to build up their National Home under British auspices. . . .

    But these plans could only be made good if the British could somehow be extricated from their engagements to the French under the Sykes-Picot Agreement. Here the Zionists could be of assistance. Sykes [a member of Lloyd George’s War Cabinet]… had been attracted by the idea that British interest might be served by an understanding which would anchor the Zionist movement to Great Britain. … (etc. etc. etc.)”

    + + +

    But Germans had already provided Jewish Zionists a great deal of institutional support for their colonizing efforts in Palestine: well before the time Lloyd George became PM, Arthur Ruppin, a German born-and-educated lawyer, had already surreptitiously purchased the finest agricultural land in the entire region, built Tel Aviv, and worked to displace Arab trade in oranges, and rents in nearby Jaffa. (see Etan Bloom, “Arthur Ruppin and the Production of Hebrew Culture in Palestine”) What the French brought to the table was only an appetite but no casserole to share — not even Jello.

  132. Rd. says:

    Empty says:

    “As I mentioned long ago, I find Zionists to be like the Ebola virus.”

    and here is a good description of their kin, the parasite…

    https://niloufarparsi.wordpress.com/

  133. Bussed-in Basiji says:

    nico-jan,

    Thank you for clearly stating your opinion- unlike some others.

    nico- 100% “if things were to go very wrong”.

    BiB- 0%

    fyi- ?

    Again, Iran has deterred them and so I don’t think that there will be a “if things were to go very wrong”.

  134. nico says:

    Bussed-in Basiji says:
    September 6, 2013 at 4:51 pm

    “Again, Iran has deterred them and so I don’t think that there will be a “if things were to go very wrong”.”

    I think you are wrong on this one.
    The US are not deterred.
    They are only looking for the excuses and are patiently cooking the case.

  135. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Slightly off-topic…about how the system REALLY works…

    How “Your” Government Works
    http://www.counterpunch.org/2013/09/06/how-your-government-works/

    “Trying to ‘reform’ government through outsider review is like trying to reform the Mafia.”

  136. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Interfax: 4 Russian ships head for Syria
    http://www.khou.com/news/world/222654221.html

    None are combat ships, so it appears Russia is getting ready to evacuate its personnel from Tartus. Either that or land troops to reinforce the security at Tartus.

  137. Richard Steven Hack says:

    US intercepts Iranian order for attack on its interests in Iraq
    http://www.timesofmalta.com/articles/view/20130906/world/us-intercepts-iranian-order-for-attack-on-us-interests-in-iraq.484978

    Is this an attempt to set up Iran for military attack as a result of the Syria war? Or merely another propaganda piece like all the ones about Iran supporting the Iraqi insurgents during the active phase of the Iraq war?

  138. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Syria ‘chemical weapons’ crisis: LIVE UPDATES
    http://rt.com/news/syria-crisis-live-updates-047/

    Quote

    12:00 GMT: The U.S. has ordered its diplomats to leave Lebanon as Congress debates Syria military strikes, in a move that will be interpreted that the possibility of a military strikes has moved a step closer.

    The US State Department has ordered nonessential U.S. diplomats and family members to leave Lebanon due to security concerns. They have also urged US citizens to avoid all travel to Lebanon because of current safety and security concerns.

    “The Department of State drew down non-emergency personnel and family members from Embassy Beirut due to threats to U.S. Mission facilities and personnel,” a statement on the Beirut embassy’s website said.

    End Quote

    No doubt because they know Israel will attack Lebanon in the near future.

  139. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Russia gave UN 100-page report in July blaming Syrian rebels for Aleppo sarin attack http://www.mcclatchydc.com/2013/09/05/201268/russia-releases-100-page-report.html#.UikVhn8piHt#storylink=cpy

  140. James Canning says:

    Fiorangela,

    I think Lloyd George was deeply suspicious of having France occupy Palestine.

    Lord Balfour thought that Jews could help keep Russia in the war, which was of course a vital objective of Britain, especially after the czar was overthrown. The influence of international Jewry was given too much weight, in Whitehall.

  141. James Canning says:

    Fiorangela,

    And some British leaders thought Jewish settlemenbt in Palestine would help to protect the Suez Canal.

  142. James Canning says:

    Nico,

    You are simply delusional in your apparent belief the US would attack Iran with nukes. Preposterous. Spend trillions of dollars on conventional weapons, and then use nukes? Seriously ludicrous.

  143. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Turkey Reinforces Syria Border as Erdogan Backs U.S. Attack
    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-09-05/turkey-reinforces-syria-border-as-erdogan-backs-u-s-attack.html

    I expect Turkey to take part in the war in Syria at some point of certain conditions are met. If the goal is to seriously degrade Syria’s military, a combined attack by the US and NATO from the air, and Israeli and Turkish troops on the ground, would do it – and would obviate any need for US troops on the ground.

    This, however, will only occur under one of two conditions: 1) the goal really is “regime change”, and/or 2) Assad is really successful at either repelling the air attack (unlikely) or the air attack is not wholly successful at taking out all the ground forces the US deems necessary. Since the entire purpose of the exercise is to degrade Syria’s military so it cannot be an effective actor against Israel, if this cannot be adequately achieved by air power, ground troops may be necessary. I view this as unlikely, but very possible.

    I doubt US ground troops will be involved, except limited insertion of Special Forces as in Libya.

  144. Richard Steven Hack says:

    More evidence about who actually runs things in the US…It’s all about the MONEY…

    When War is Swell: the Carlyle Group and the Middle East at War
    http://www.counterpunch.org/2013/09/06/when-war-is-swell-the-carlyle-group-and-the-middle-east-at-war/

  145. Rd. says:

    Richard Steven Hack says:

    “Exhibit A: Saudis have put ”on the table” their offer to pay for the entire US assault on Syria.
    the Saudi super-profits will be $401.8 million per day. “

    “IF” there was to be a war, and the saud oil money behind it, there will be implications for both saud and petrol dollars. To presume that the rest of the world would continue to buy saud oil and pay US dollar to support US domination at their own perils, would be naive. If this was not the case, the brits would have supported the war. Even the french may be having second thought, given the buildup of strong opposition in US. The typical corporate whore journalist at PBS Newshour are even providing opposite view points. They typically tend to be front runners in the propaganda crap, even at times shaming Fox news.

    And keep in mind, in a few weeks it will be time to have congressional discussions on budget shortfalls, debt and government running out of money!!! at a time where a very polarized public is coming together on a given issue and forming consensus, it’ll be interesting to see how the lobby wants to ride the congress.

    http://consortiumnews.com/2013/09/06/obama-warned-on-syrian-intel/

  146. Jay says:

    Richard Steven Hack says:
    September 6, 2013 at 5:44 pm

    about a day late to the party!
    (see my post and satire on the same from ~ a day earlier).

    It is nothing but a smokescreen – and a cause for a burst of laughter!

  147. Bussed-in Basiji says:

    nico-jan,

    What I said is not opinion, it’s knowledge of Iran’s actual “capabilities and intentions”- unlike some others.

    Anyway, the US (and UK) knows that a direct attack on Iran would be “catastrophic” for it and that’s what’s relevant. Of course nobody can stop US politicians from doing things that are catastrophic for the US.

    In fact, I think that is the more relevant and important matter of discussion on this forum, not whether Iran has/can deterred the US or not because clearly it can and has so far. What do you think?

  148. nico says:

    Bussed-in Basiji says:
    September 7, 2013 at 3:22 a

    “What I said is not opinion, it’s knowledge of Iran’s actual “capabilities and intentions”- unlike some others.”

    Iran’s capabilities and intentions have been lade clear through media.
    It mainly consists in missiles capabilities to target US interests and allies in the region and the ability to block the SoH for some time.

    Do you think such capabilities have the same weight as the US nuking Tehran ?

    My take is that Iran could generate major inconvenience to the US while the US may brandish existentiak threat toward Iran.

    I woukd be interested to get your opinion about that.

    “Anyway, the US (and UK) knows that a direct attack on Iran would be “catastrophic” for it and that’s what’s relevant. Of course nobody can stop US politicians from doing things that are catastrophic for the US.”

    Would Iran have the capability to deliver existential threat to the US land, then the US politician would be rightly deterred.

    I do agree with the SL analysis regarding the nukes.
    The issue is that the US do not.
    The US have NOT the true dignity and the true morality necessary for the SL analysis to apply.
    Obviously as proven by historical facts the US unleashed their most criminal and lowest instinct to dominate.
    Their alleged morality is window dressing, PR, propaganda, media fabrication, concoction.

  149. nico says:

    Rd. says:
    September 6, 2013 at 9:46 pm

    “To presume that the rest of the world would continue to buy saud oil and pay US dollar to support US domination at their own perils, would be naive. If this was not the case, the brits would have supported the war. Even the french may be having second thought, given the buildup of strong opposition in US.”

    “And keep in mind, in a few weeks it will be time to have congressional discussions on budget shortfalls, debt and government running out of money!!! at a time where a very polarized public is coming together on a given issue and forming consensus, it’ll be interesting to see how the lobby wants to ride the congress.”

    I think you adress here the 2 main subjects at the core of the US macro policies.
    However my view is that your overall analysis is wrong.

    First regarding the petrodollar.
    The wars in the ME are made to sustain it.
    Basically Iran is challenging it and Iran is gaining the critical mass to definetly eliminate it.
    Iran policiy from 1979 have always been to kick out the parasists from the region and for the regional country to have independent foreign policy from the US.
    That is the real threat against the petrodollar and the US feodal system in the region.

    Second regarding the US budget and economy.
    You need to realize that the US are already financially broken.
    That is finished. The US are finished.
    The real crisis has yet to hit. By then, the unemployement in the US will be the same as in Greece or Spain and the standard of living will be cut in half.
    The US bailout and the federal reserve balance sheet is a gigantic fraud. An unbalanced scam that threaten to crumble by the hour.

    In such case hisyory has shown that politicians trigger wars willingly.
    There are 2 reasons for that.

    First the Anglo need to keep their world domination.
    And when they lose the economical game within the rules they themselves imposed to the world, well they throw the chessbord upside and refuse the rules of the game.

    Second politicians are cowards and they cannot explain to their citizens how bad leaders they are.

  150. nico says:

    Mr Canning,

    That is about your idiotic stances that the P5+1 talks is not about Israel, UK or other countries possessing nukes…
    Those talks are all about NPT, legality and justice.
    You are truly clueless.

    http://edition.presstv.ir/iphone/detail.aspx?id=322533

    “Iran’s deputy ambassador to the UN has stressed the importance of prioritizing global nuclear disarmament, saying the objective must be perused rigorously.Speaking at a UN General Assembly event to observe the International Day against Nuclear Tests, Gholam Hossein Dehqani called for a “balanced and non-discriminatory” approach to nuclear disarmament and the avoidance of any misinterpretation of international legal instruments such as the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) in words and deeds.”

  151. Richard Steven Hack says:

    US will bomb Syria with long-range bombers, official says
    http://www.presstv.ir/detail/2013/09/06/322453/us-will-bomb-syria-with-b2-b52/

    “Those ships are loaded with nearly 200 missiles, plans call for firing the vast majority of them,” it added.”

    “The B-2 and B-52 bombers are equipped with joint air-to-surface missiles, designed to destroy both mobile and fixed targets. The missiles’ primary advantage is that they allow pilots to operate outside the lethal range of most hostile air defense systems.”

    I’ve no doubt that bombers will be used in addition to cruise missiles. This strike will go longer than two days, also. It will go on until there is no longer any Syrian aircraft, missiles, long-range artillery, and command-and-control left. This is the only way to insure that Syria will be kept out of the upcoming Iran war.

    The same procedures will be done to Hizballah in Lebanon, although that will be more difficult since Hizballah has no obvious military bases to attack and much of what they have is underground. That will require Israeli ground troops, and I’m certain Israel will commit their entire force this time, unlike 2006. This is Israel’s last shot at taking out Hizballah before the Iran war, and while they may not entirely succeed, I suspect they will achieve at least some of what they intend.

  152. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Veteran Intelligence Professionals Warn Obama on Syrian Intel
    http://antiwar.com/blog/2013/09/06/veteran-intelligence-professionals-warn-obama-on-syrian-intel/

    Quote

    That Syria’s main ally is Iran, with whom it has a mutual defense treaty, also plays a role in Israeli calculations. Iran’s leaders are not likely to be able to have much military impact in Syria, and Israel can highlight that as an embarrassment for Tehran.

    End Quote

    I agree. But of course it goes beyond that. By taking out Syria – and Hizballah – Israel can have a “cheap war” with Iran without worrying about its borders.

    Beyond that, this letter is a waste of time, since Obama knows full well who and what is behind the chemical attack and what the purpose of the entire crisis is. I’m not sure the letter writers do.

  153. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Dennis Kucinich on Top 10 Unproven Claims for War Against Syria
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/dennis-j-kucinich/syria-war-questions_b_3870763.html

  154. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Peter Jenkins reviews new book on Iran…

    BOOKS: ‘Delusion’ Challenges U.S. Claims About Nuclear Iran
    http://www.ipsnews.net/2013/09/books-delusion-challenges-u-s-claims-about-nuclear-iran/

    It would be interesting if the Leveretts would review this book here, as it appears similar in intent to Going To Tehran.

  155. fyi says:

    Nasser says:
    September 7, 2013 at 2:30 am

    Correct.

    While the story is weak in the fantasy novel “Crash of 1979”, the implication of a nuclear-armed Iran and the US response presented in that novel is worth reading.

    Quite relevant; in my opinion.

  156. kooshy says:

    A very interesting and eye opening interview of Mr. Brzezinski, I highly recommend everyone to read

    “And after all, Iran is next door. It might have some nuclear capability. Suppose the Israelis knock it off. What about Pakistan and others? The notion that one can control a region from a very strong and motivated country, but of only six million people, is simply a wild dream.”

    “Assuming that a few more arms of this or that kind will achieve what they really desire, which is a victory for a good cause, without fully understanding that the hidden complexities are going to suck us in more and more, we’re going to be involved in a large regional war eventually, with a region even more hostile to us than many Arabs are currently, it could be a disaster for us. But that is not a perspective that the average American, who doesn’t really read much about world affairs, can quite grasp. This is a country of good emotions, but poor knowledge and little sophistication about the world”.

    See more at: http://www.novinite.com/articles/153234/Brzezinski%3A+Syria+May+Suck+Us+into+Large+Regional+War#sthash.F2oLJd5c.dpuf

  157. Fiorangela says:

    How to understand John Kerry: “cultural para-stimuli”

    Or, has Benjamin Netanyahu been amygdalectomized?

    (In his comments on Sept. 3, 2013, Kerry said he had just returned from extensive talks with Israel’s PM)

    + + +
    Opening pages to “I Am Charlotte Simmons,” Tom Wolfe

    “Victor Ransome Starling (U.S.), Laureate, Biological Sciences, 1997. A twenty eight year old assistant professor of psychology at Dupont University, Starling conducted an experiment in 1983 in which he and an assistant surgically removed the amygdale, an almond-shaped mass of gray matter deep within the brain that controls emotions in the higher mammals, from thirty cats. It was well known that the procedure caused animals to veer helplessly from one inappropriate affect to another, boredome where there should be fear, cringing where there should be preening, sexual arousal where there was nothing that would stimulate an intact animal. But starling’s amydalectomized cats had gone into a state of sexual arousal hypermanic in the extreme. Cats attempted copulation with such frenzy, a cat mounted on another cat would be in turn mounted by a third cat, and so on, creating tandems (coloq.: daisy chains) as long as ten feet.

    Starling called in a colleague to observe. The thirty amygdalectomized cats and thirty normal cats used as controls were housed in cages in the same room, one cat per cage. Starling set about opening cages so that the amygdalectomized cats might congregate on the floor. The first cat thus released sprang from its cage onto the visitor, embracing his ankle with its forelegs and convulsively thrusting its pelvis upon his shoe. Starling conjectured that the cat had smelled the leather of the shoe and in its excitement had mistaken it for a compatible animal. Whereupon his assistant said, “But professor Starling, that’s one of the controls.”

    In that moment originated a discovery that has since radically altered the understanding of animal and human behavior: the existence – indeed, the pervasiveness—of “cultural para-stimuli.” The control cats had been able to watch the amygdalized cats from their cages. Over a period of weeks they had become so thoroughly steeped in an environment of hypermanic sexual obsession that behaviour induced surgically in the amygdalectomized cats had been induced in the controls without any intervention whatsoever. Starling had discovered that a strong social or “cultural” atmosphere, even as abnormal as this one, could in time overwhelm the genetically determined responses of perfectly normal, healthy animals. Fourteen years later, Starling became the twentieth member of the Dupont faculty awarded the Nobel Prize.

    — Simon McGough and Sebastian J. R. Sloane, eds., The Dictionary of Nobel Laureates, 3rd ed. (Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press, 2001), p. 512.”

    ____
    [attribution: Tom Wolfe, I Am Charlotte Simmons, (New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2004), pp. 3-4

  158. Fiorangela says:

    Speaking of amygdalectomized cats copulating in a daisy chain, Max Blumenthal posted an expose on the provenance of Ms. Bagy, Kerry & McCain’s source for assurance that the rebels that the US supports are “the good guys.”

    Bagy is a part of an organization run by Robert Kagan’s wife (she of the high-pitched voice). Read Blumenthal here — http://mondoweiss.net/2013/09/shady-pr-operatives-pro-israel-ties-anti-castro-money-inside-the-syrian-oppositions-dc-spin-machine.html

    = = =

    This morning, C Span trotted out another Kristol-Kagan klone to address the American people on morality.
    Robert Zarate, former congressional staffer, current mouthpiece for The Foreign Policy Initiative, a feral cat that resulted from manic copulation of killected kool kats inkluding the Kagans and Kristol, recited his talking points at least the requisite number of times and a few for good measure: It is the MORAL OBLIGATION of the US — the indispensable nation — to bomb Syria to kingdom come.

    Zarate waved aside the inconvenience of US having supplied Saddam with 650,000 tons of chemical precursors with which at least 100,000 Iranians were gassed — “We don’t want to repeat our inheritance, we need to move forward.” (or words to that effect).

    Zarate’s group must not have coordinated their talking points with Steve Clemons: the latter excused the gassing of Iraqi Kurds and 100,000 Iranians with the broadbrush argument: “We were in the Cold War.”

    Oh.
    Right.
    That makes it all better.

    Apparently, C Span producers do not know how to make international calls to places such as the Vatican.

  159. kooshy says:

    Video: Syrian Rebel Admits Using Chemical Weapons

    “We’ll kill their women and children like Osama Bin Laden said”

    Paul Joseph Watson
    Infowars.com
    September 5, 2013

    A video has emerged of an opposition rebel militant in Syria apparently confessing to using chemical weapons in order to follow Osama Bin Laden’s mantra of killing women and children.
    http://www.infowars.com/video-syrian-rebel-admits-using-chemical-weapons/

  160. fyi says:

    Fiorangela says:
    September 7, 2013 at 12:11 pm

    In regards to the amygdalectomized, it would have been interesting to monitor the electromagnetic environment before, during, and after the operation as well as the experiment.

  161. James Canning says:

    Fiorangela,

    Steve Clemons thinks the Cold War excuses Iraq’s attacks with CW on Iranian soldiers? Iran was not a supporter of the Soviet Union.

  162. James Canning says:

    Kooshy,

    Zbig Brzezinski is of course quite right, that the average American has little knowledge of the world. And very little knowledge of the Middle East. And even less understanding.

  163. James Canning says:

    Nico,

    I favor nuclear disarmament. But, Iran needs to make a deal of some sort with the P5+1, and this will not involve ridding the world of nukes. At this time, or in near future.

    Iran should continue to focus attention on Middle East zone free of nukes, draw attention to US hypocrisy regarding Israeli nukes, etc.

  164. James Canning says:

    Nico,

    Idiotic American wars in the Middle East WEAKEN the dollar.

  165. fyi says:

    James Canning says:
    September 7, 2013 at 1:33 pm

    Both items that you have mentioned are not even pipe-dreams; they are squarely in the realm of fantasy now.

  166. James Canning says:

    New York Times today reports that an EU court has ruled sanctions against Iranian banks are illegal.

  167. James Canning says:

    Sanctions as applied, are illegal.

  168. nico says:

    James Canning says:
    September 7, 2013 at 1:36 pm

    “Nico,

    Idiotic American wars in the Middle East WEAKEN the dollar.”

    BS

    The US are already financially broken.
    The only thing that makes the petrodollar last threae to hold is the US warmongering in the region and their satanic alliance with local sheikdom.

  169. nico says:

    James Canning says:
    September 7, 2013 at 1:33 pm

    “Nico,I favor nuclear disarmament. But, Iran needs to make a deal of some sort with the P5+1, and this will not involve ridding the world of nukes. At this time, or in near future.Iran should continue to focus attention on Middle East zone free of nukes, draw attention to US hypocrisy regarding Israeli nukes, etc.James Canning says:”

    That is not for Iran to make a gesture.
    Iran already clearly stated that it would respect the NPT.

    The US and stooges are the problem.
    Their greed, criminality, warmongering and unprincipled stance are the problem.
    Like your stance.

    YOU are the clear representative of the problem.

  170. Castellio says:

    Bussed – in Basiji. For what it is worth, I agree with your assessments of both FYI and Smith. The first hopes that Islam will become the Catholicism of the counter-reformation, and the second works to prove that Iranians are as simpleminded as their enemies portray them.

    Neither offers the Iranian people, or others, anything of value. Whatever their actual provenances might be, the futures of FYI and Smith are already well behind them. They are not worth your time: there is real work to be done.

    And to the Leveretts, assuming you occasionally skim these comments: you are both playing an important role in the efforts of people of conscience to better evaluate their past and determine their future. As part of that, I ask that you maintain, in your presentations, an on-going sense of “how it could be done differently”. You do not, in fact, want to simply win an argument about the past, you want to alter the way forward. You have a responsibility, of which you are both capable, of directing the growing faith in your historical perspective towards doors you believe can be opened.

  171. fyi says:

    Castellio says:
    September 7, 2013 at 2:39 pm

    The future of all of us is in the cemetery.

    I have established several things on this forum:

    The extent and depth of religious sentiment that informs the political confrontation between Axis Powers and Iran and her allies.

    I have established the theoretical foundations for a form of Islamic Ecumenism; since you have not lived in a Muslim country you are clueless about the depths of bigotry and intolerance obtaining among these polities.

    I have established, through counter-examples, that outward adherence to Islamic practices does not necessarily imply a moral excellence; far from it, in fact.

    I have established, I believe, that the future security of states is now predicated on long-range nuclear weapons.

    I have also established, again through counter examples, that there is no qualitative difference between Mr. Bussed-in-Basiji’s (and people like him) who arrogate to themselves who is and is not Muslim and the men who attack Shias; having judged Shia to be not Muslims.

    Religion is meant to bring people together; my program does.

    There is no rational alternative to what I have espoused; the alternative is more bigotry, more prejudice, more death and more oppression.

  172. James Canning says:

    fyi,

    You actually believe Obama would allow Iran to build nukes? Amazing.

  173. James Canning says:

    Nico,

    Can you identify a single country that does not believe Iran needs to make a deal with the P5+1?

    If you are arguing Iran can stockpile whatever amounts of enriched uranium as suits Iran’s fancy, unless nukes are eliminated globally, you are simply wildly mistaken.

  174. nico says:

    James Canning says:
    September 7, 2013 at 3:04 pm

    “Nico,
    Can you identify a single country that does not believe Iran needs to make a deal with the P5+1?”

    Not a single country believe the P5+1 to be other than a political charade and a lever used by the US to impose their colonialist views.

    The P5+1 is a worthless forum.

    It is beteween Iran and the US.

  175. BiBiJon says:

    voilà‎: Muslim on Muslim
    ================

    NY Times today in an essay, “Memo from Europe,” purports to explain the hoopla about chemical weapons use all of a sudden. Please note that hegemony in the ME, pipeliestan, Assad’s winning streak, oil and gas, devotion to Israel, etc. has nothing to do with the sudden media frenzy around CW.

    In the middle, Steven Erlanger, the Paris bureau chief, comes up with this:

    “The Iraqis used both first- and second-generation nerve gases to blunt Iranian offensives in southern Iraq and forestall defeat. Given American and Western unease with Iran’s revolution, there was little public outrage as Muslims used poison on other Muslims.”

    See http://www.nytimes.com/2013/09/07/world/middleeast/a-weapon-seen-as-too-horrible-even-in-war.html?pagewanted=2&_r=0&hp&pagewanted=all

    Well, well, well!

    We are talking France, home to 6 million Muslims, where Erlanger lives and then posits that 15 some years before 9/11 the ‘Western” folk were not much outraged as Muslims (fascist Baathist nationalism of Saddam) gassed other Muslims (defenders of Islamic revolution of Iran).

    Hey, Bandar Bush, keep doing what you’re doing, Erlanger approves.

  176. fyi says:

    James Canning says:
    September 7, 2013 at 3:00 pm

    I again state: the power to undo nuclear Iran does not exist in the International Arena.

    Mr. Obama has enough pretexts now to initiate a war against Iran if he so wishes.

    He does not need the additional pretext of Iranians building a nuclear weapon.

    Since the failure of his strategic initiative against Iran and Syria has obligated him to go to war in Syria, it stands to reason that the depending on the positive outcome (for Axis Powers) of the war in Syria, he will next move against Iran -since the economic war against Iran has also failed.

    Per your points; Mr. Obama does not need even any pretext; he can try to impose a naval blockade of Iran which would immediately result in war against Iran.

    He or the next US President.

    Iran has nothing to lose if she leaves the NPT during the US war against Syria – if that transpires.

    And if US is seen to prevail in Syria, in my opinion, Iran needs to build nuclear weapons – there is no loss for Iran any longer.

  177. Karl.. says:

    James

    Do you consider Obama a World police or why this obsession? Why do you keep dragging up the line “you think Obama would allow that?”? Who cares what Obama say?

    Does UK follow demands by Iran? Does US? No so why are you making absurd comments that Iran must follow demands by US and UK?

  178. fyi says:

    Karl.. says:
    September 7, 2013 at 4:19 pm

    He is making those statements based on the strategic asymmetry between Axis Powers and the new Shia/Irani power.

    However, the fact that the Shia Crescent has not been defeated despite the war in Syria and the siege war against Iran indicates that the latent strategic asymmetry of Axis Powers is not as overwhelming since it cannot be easily translated into actual power.

    Consider:

    Axis Powers can put 3-4 million people under-arms and invade and occupy Iran; they have that potential but it is not translate-able into concrete power.

    Likewise, they could attack Iran with nuclear weapons to destroy 5 to 7 percent of her population in order to bring about state collapse in that country.

    There are good reasons that they are not realizing such an scheme.

    Mr. Canning does not recognize these constraints on Axis Powers exercise of strategic power; he should.

    In fact, the Axis Powers planners ought to have revised their plans by now and initiated a process of rapprochement with the Shia/Irani power.

    Clearly, the Axis Powers planners and leader are loath to admit that limit; strategic negotiations with Iran is an admission of the limit to their power.

    Note that Mr. Obama specifically, gave up his agenda on non-proliferation, on arms control, on dialogue with Arab & Muslim world, on Afghanistan, on Iraq, on Palestine in order to crush the new Shia/Irani power.

    He has sacrificed his foreign policy agenda and he is about to sacrifice his domestic policy agenda solely in order to wound Iran.

    This demonstrates the extent of the strategic disaster that Iraq War in 2003 was for US.

  179. James Canning says:

    fyi,

    For years I have called for normal relations between Iran and the US.

    I think it highly unlikely the US would attempt to occupy Iran, in the event of hostilities. I see zero chance of use of nukes.

    Iran clearly needs to make a deal of some sort with the P5+1. Meaning ending Iranian enriching to 20, plus some other things. QWhy is this such a big deal?

  180. James Canning says:

    Karl..,

    I say Iran needs to make a deal with the Six Powers. Is there any country on the planet arguing this is not true?

  181. James Canning says:

    fyi,

    Fine. Iran can have nuclear power plants. And enrich uranium to low levels. It cannot have nukes. Full stop.

  182. fyi says:

    James Canning says:
    September 7, 2013 at 4:56 pm

    There is no deal available to Iran; Axis Powers need this pretext for their future war against Iran.

    Other countries understand all of this.

  183. James Canning says:

    fyi,

    I think a deal can be made, Iran and P5+1. But I think in the shorter term it will have to be implicit, or off-the-record to some extent. If Iran continues to stockpile, there will be more sanctions.

  184. James Canning says:

    fyi,

    The UK does not want war with Iran. Germany does not want war with Iran. (For that matter, Germany opposes a US attack on Syria at this time.)

    Bibi Netanyahu wants a US war with Iran. Iran should not be helping Bibi with his warmongering.

  185. fyi says:

    James Canning says:
    September 7, 2013 at 7:25 pm

    That off-the-record deal is already there; Iranians are keeping the amount of 20% constant.

    It is strategically meaningless, however.

    It will not prevent war against Iran when Axis Powers are ready for it.

    As for UK and Germany not wanting war against Iran; they have no say in that.

    US does not need the approval of his Barons in that regard.

    At any rate, UK and Germany are too kind – they rather wage their war through “starving” Iran than “bleeding” her.

    I do not think you realize how much the Axis Project of wounding Iran since 2009 – the brain-child of Mrs. Clinton, Mr. Danilon, Dr. Salughter, Dr. Dunn – has consolidated and firmed up the Shia Crescent.

    Those individuals put into action a policy that further tilted the strategic landscape in favor of Iran – amazing!

  186. Sineva says:

    James Canning says:
    September 7, 2013 at 4:57 pm
    No deal can even be thought about much less discussed until the west gives up its zero enrichment demand and actually begins to negotiate rather than issuing threat based ultimatums,only then can there be a possibility of a deal and even then the west will have to accept irans right to enrich,so far there has been no sign whatsoever that the west is even considering these things,indeed the wishful thinking in some western circles is that rouhani is a “moderate” who the west “can do business with” ie agree to western demands

  187. Karl.. says:

    James

    Nonsense! You were just demanding that Iran must follow what Obama say!

  188. nico says:

    Interesting.
    Is that sign of shia uniting and uprising in the region as an answer to the US’ Syrian avantures ?
    Is Iran masterminding that ?
    In Turkey, Barhein, Yemen… Kuwait, KSA…?

    http://old.mehrnews.com/en/newsdetail.aspx?NewsID=1827543

    “Thousands of Shias gathered in Halkali Square and said no to the great Middle East Project which has turned the Islamic world into a bloodbath and they demanded peace and unity and resistance.

    On Saturday September 7, thousands of Shias gathered in Halkali Square and chanted slogans against the USA and Israel saying that they will not be a puppet for their plays.

    The leader of Turkish Shias, Selahattin said that in the case Imperialists attack our region he will take part in the resistance front and he mentioned: “Shia will never let Lady Zainab to be captured once more by the Yazid’s descendents. If it is needed I will go and defend her myself. Until I am alive I will never let Zainab to be captured once more.

    Along with the leader of Turkish Shias, the Head of world Shia scholars Association, Sheikh Hassan Karabulut, the Head of CAFERIDER, Sinan Kilic, the Head of the Alevi house of worship, Gazi Arslan and many other Shia Scholars and civilians took part in the gathering.“Death to the US, death to Israel” “Turkey, Don’t forget that Syria is your brother” “We will not be soldiers for the US” “Shia and Sunni are brothers, Wahhabis are treacherous” “We dont want fighters following NATO” were some of the slogans that people chanted and after that Kasim Alcan, one of the managers of the Zeynebiye Media declared an Statement:(…)”

  189. nico says:

    While at the same moment…
    http://english.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13920617000912
    “A senior Turkish security-military delegation is currently in Israel to discuss a possible US military strike against Syria with Israeli officials, media reports said.”

  190. Bussed-in Basiji says:

    nico-jan,

    Iranian capabilities and responses in case of an attack are more than what has been made clear in the media. Let’s leave it at that, shall we?

  191. nico says:

    Bussed-in Basiji says:
    September 8, 2013 at 7:58 am

    “Iranian capabilities and responses in case of an attack are more than what has been made clear in the media. Let’s leave it at that, shall we?”

    First what is the aim at having deterrence capabilities not known or publicized ?
    Second do you think the US are aware of those unplublicized capabilities ? (I mean other than speed boats and missiles and the other niceties that are displayed periodically)
    As it seems you have first hand knowledge of Iran capabilities could you then enlighten us with your insight and let us know what are those “secret” capabilities ? General terms would suffice.

  192. Bussed-in Basiji says:

    Castellio-jan,

    Thanks for your kind words. Like I have been saying for years, the most beneficial subject of discussion on this forum would be the total failure of the political process in the US and what to do about. I’m always ready to discuss this.

    I personally believe we have reached a point in US/western history were the traditional tools and methods of political activism are totally ineffective but they are positively immoral in the face of the death and destruction that the western govts cause around the world. I think that some sort of more robust action by moral, decent human beings that live in the west- with whom I spent many years of my life and know well and consider friends- has become a moral necessity.

    On the matter of fyi and smithy-joon, unfortunately fyi doesn’t realize that things like “Islamic Ecunemism” itself are contested and debatable things but as all wannabe-prophets he speaks in bombastic absolutes and just assumes it’s a “good thing”.

    He identifies a problem- without considering that his identification is debatable- for which he then he proposes solutions- again without considering that these might not be appropriate.

    Then to top it off he says things like “there is no rational alternative to what I have proposed”. Well, gee thanks for allowing the rest of us the honor of receiving your proclamations.

    All these are strong indications of being a blow-hard kos-khol.

    In fact, I agree with his assessment that the root of the conflict between the west and Iran is “religious”. The question then is what does “religious” mean in this context. I seems we both agree that the US (and UK vicariously) have a “chosen people” complex stemming from their militant Protestant history- which in the US is a universal feature of the elite regardless whether they are Protestant or not and expresses itself in things like claiming to be an “exceptional nation”.

    You see that Obama in his WH press conf and in St. Pete again just ended up saying that after all is said and done we have to do this “because we are America”.

    I also agree with him that the Muslims are deeply divided but I disagree as to the causes and as to the solutions to overcome this. In my view the single most important and effective thing to end this pathetic state is executing the most amount of members o ale Saud one can find and dissolving this evil kingdom called Saudi Arabia. He sent books to TU library during the war, we were blessed with finding “the beautiful life” fighting the invader- I think you see the fundamental differences in approach. More on this later.

    I disagree with him that Iran needs nuclear tipped ICBMs to maintain its security- but more importantly- the people- the SL in particular- that have been very successfully safeguarding Iranian security for the last 35 years in the worst circumstances while he was seeking “the comfortable life” with his idols like Jim Baker- disagree with him.

    In this context when confronted with a simple follow-up question to his bombastic proclamations- he refuses to give an honest answer because he knows that the answer will unravel his house of cards.

    In this context when it is pointed out to him that in fact and in reality Iran is already deterring the US as he demands but without using “satanic” tools such as atom bombs or chemical weapons, he again just simply shuts out this info. Problematic, isn’t it?

    He unfortunately doesn’t understand that nobody ever claimed that outward appearance mean moral excellence- an issue he is weirdly obsessed with. He doesn’t understand that among the rest of humanity their are mutually agreed-upon norms, rules, standards, minimums of belief and practice which distinguish the adherents of different religions. All religions are in fact not the same.

    And finally he fails to understand that statements like “religion is supposed to bring people together” actually directly contradicts the tenets of Islam as expressed in numerous ayat of Islam’s authoritative book of revelations and the sunnah of the Prophet of Islam.

    In fact Islam is supposed to distinguish people from another- the believers from the non-believers (both of which are concepts with variation of degrees).

    Please look it up in the Quran if you don’t believe me.

    In fact his “plan” for Islam contradicts the Holy Quran. Problematic, isn’t it?

    So why would an otherwise intelligent person who clearly has read the Quran and is somewhat familiar with history of Islam and Muslims, say such things?

    My view is that he is so completely immersed in western civilization and culture that he just forces (tahmil) upon Islam and the Quran whatever previous bias and conclusion he had without actually understanding the religion- both as a scholarly matter and as a practical matter- in things like dealing with takfiris- i.e. they need to be wiped off the pages of history.

    Anyway, the best approach is learning Islam from the real experts like Imam Khomeini, Ayat Khamenei, Shahid Sadr, Shahid Motahhari and Allamah Tabatabai, not from “bi-savad” people like me and Mr.fyi.

  193. Bussed-in Basiji says:

    nico-jan,

    I mentioned that these things have been conveyed to the US and UK officials and that’s what is relevant, not what is “publicly” stated/known.

    Iran has successfully deterred US and UK attacks since after the war and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future.

    I will leave it at that.

  194. Neo says:

    Bussed-in Basiji says: September 8, 2013 at 8:49 am

    Basiji jan,

    Interesting post to Castellio. Genuine question:

    Am totally with you against the exceptionalists. How does one guard against becoming one though? If we – as humans – are to judge others as (inferior) non-believers, what is our difference then with the exceptionalists? Are we against exceptionalism because it is unjust or because someone other than us is practising it?

  195. James Canning says:

    Sineva,

    Obviously you are correct in saying in effect the US continues its foolish public position that Iran must not be allowed to enrich uranium, even to 5%.

    I continue to think Iran can gain acceptance of enrichment to 5%. But the Israel lobby currently is preventing Obama from even hinting he would accept such enrichment.

    I will say yet again, Iran needs to make some sort of partial deal with the P5+1. Iran needs to be talking to officials of countries other than the US, to work around the problem of the ISRAEL LOBBY.

  196. James Canning says:

    Has anyone else noticed that Syria’s CR programme has done a great deal to put the survival of the Syrian government into question? Ironic of course, but true.

  197. James Canning says:

    CW programme (not CR)

  198. James Canning says:

    fyi,

    Yes, Iran has in effect stopped stockpiling 20%U. Other measures can also be taken by Iran.

    Your apparent belief Iran is much stronger for the sanctions etc I think is simply wrong.

  199. Unknown Unknowns says:

    Words worthy of greater propagation:

    (from MoA)

    @57

    Juan Cole – the murderous war criminal propagandist – should have an effing knife shoved up his a$$ a la Moammar.

    Here’s Juanito on Libya in August 2011 at his most triumphant basically telling everyone that called him a war criminal to eff off.

    Fast forward.

    And here’s Juanito in July of 2013 finally admitting that Libya is a total clusterf*ck.

    But like all good “liberal” propagandist murderers when all hell breaks loose b/c of the war crimes they ADVOCATED for, Juanito pretends like he could just never have known what was going to happen even though a six year old could have told you so.

    He incredibly and (knife-up-his-a$$) dishonestly ends the July ’13 piece with: “I have a bad feeling about this.”

    Posted by: JSorrentine | Sep 7, 2013 2:59:08 PM | 72

  200. James Canning says:

    Karl..,

    Where was I “demanding that Iran do what Obama say[s]”?

  201. James Canning says:

    Karl..,

    Your continuing contention, implied, is that Russia and China have no problem with Iranian enrichment to 20. Wrong.

  202. fyi says:

    James Canning says:
    September 8, 2013 at 1:19 pm

    In the absence of any credible positive program for the Near East by the Axis Powers, what has been achieved by them has been to put the fear of death into the hearts and minds of the Resistance.

    The Axis Powers have thus helped Iranians achieve something that they would had a lot of difficulty in achieving by themselves; strategic cohesion from Hindu Kush to the Mediterranean Sea among their allies.

    The sanctions have destroyed internal crony capitalist networks within Iran; they can no longer be indulged as the state faces existential threats.

  203. James Canning says:

    fyi,

    I see your points but continue to think Iran would be much stronger if it did not have the sanctions.

  204. Karl.. says:

    James

    You believe that Iran must follow demands by Obama, dead wrong.

  205. Karl.. says:

    James
    September 8, 2013 at 1:19 pm

    So from “tripling” to “stopped”, and now Iran must do more according to James! Demands, demands, demands..

    Have you even read the book by Leverett’s? Why are you here when you dont agree with the basics of the Leverett’s.

  206. Jay says:

    James, you tend to state content free slogans. Why?

    Yes, “The UK does not want war with Iran. Germany does not want war with Iran. “.
    Yes, it may be true that ” … Iran would be much stronger if it did not have the sanctions…”

    However, these statements have no useful semantic content!

    In the first case, nobody “wants” war. US did not want war with Iraq, the US wanted access to Iraqi resources and wanted to reshape the M.E. War was simply the instrument. War is not a “want”, it is a tool!

    In the second case, and setting aside the challenge that can be posed to your assertion, US/UK do not want sanctions! Sanctions are simply available means to an end for the US/UK. Sanctions are also not a “want”, but they are a tool for hegemony.

    I am confident that you comprehend this. That is why there is an appearance that your statements are unhelpful and that it seems that you “issue” these proclamations with little thoughtfulness.

  207. James Canning says:

    Daily Telegraph: “The PM must accept genuine doubt over Syria” – – British public opposes military intefvention in that country.

  208. James Canning says:

    Jay,

    I think Bibi Netanyahu very much WANTS a US war with Iran. He seeks a good smashing of Iran’s military capabilities.

    Germany does not WANT war in the Gulf.

    I think a number of fanatically “pro-Israel” people in the US in fact very much WANT a good smashing of Iran by the US. To “protect” Israel.

    Yes, Iran seeks to defend its rights under the NPT etc etc etc. But question remains: is Iran wise to help haters of Iran bring war to the Gulf?

  209. James Canning says:

    Jay,

    Do you think Iran should continue to stockpile enriched uranium, pursue the plutonium programme, etc, even if this means more sanctions against Iran?

  210. Rehmat says:

    On September 3, The Washington Post, reported that “pro-Israel and Jewish groups strongly back military strike against Syria“.

    On September 3, the powerful Jewish Lobby (AIPAC) in a statement urged the Congress to grant the President the authority he has requested to attack Syria.

    ”This is a critical moment when America must also send a forceful message of resolve to Iran and Hezbollah – both of whom have provided direct and extensive military support to Assad,” said the statement.

    Are we living in 1933, when Judea declared war on Germany?

    http://rehmat1.com/2013/09/08/judea-declares-war-on-syria/

  211. James Canning says:

    Jay,

    Do you think the Assad government blundered by pursuing its CW programme?

  212. James Canning says:

    Guardian (UK): “Syria chemical weapons attack not ordered by Assad, says German press” (Aug 8)

  213. Jay says:

    James, if you put your good understanding of language to use, and read and reflect carefully, you should realize that…

    War is not a “want” – it is a “tool”. BIBI does not WANT war, BIBI WANTS other things and WAR is a tool.

    Just as sanctions is a tool.

    When politicians say “we don’t want war”, they are using language to “confuse” and “misdirect” – WAR is not a “want”!

  214. James Canning says:

    Daily Telegraph leader opposing UK attack on Syria is today, Sept. 8.

    Spectator Sept. 7: “Taki: perhaps Obama should read All Quiet on the Western Front”. Good advice.

  215. James Canning says:

    Jay,

    OK, Netanyahu wants Iran’s military capabilities destroyed by the US. Even if Iran objects. And especially if Iran objects.

  216. Karl.. says:

    James

    Do YOU think Assad “blundered” by pursuing CW?

  217. James Canning says:

    A piece on ForeignPolicy states that Russia has 11 million immigrants. Many of them illegal. And second in number only to the US.

  218. James Canning says:

    Karl..,

    For many years I have been concerned Syria’s CW could end up causing serious problems for Syria itself. Yes, a very big blunder indeed.

  219. James Canning says:

    Karl..,

    One recalls in this context, the comments of Gaddafi, that nukes are dangerous for the country that possesses them.

  220. Karl.. says:

    James

    Wow you have been “concerned” that syrian CW would end up causing “problems for Syria itself”? You seriously dont think anyone believe that stuff?

    Then I assume you are against UK nukes too?

  221. Bussed-in Basiji says:

    Neo-jan,

    “Habituate your heart to mercy for the subjects and to affection and kindness for them. Do not stand over them like greedy beasts who feel it is enough to devour them, since they are of two kinds: either your brother in religion or one like you in creation.

    They will commit slips and encounter mistakes. They may act wrongly, willfully or by neglect. So extend to them your forgiveness and pardon, in the same way as you would like Allah to extend His forgiveness and pardon to you, because you are over them and your “Wali al-Amr” is over you, while Allah is over him who has appointed you. He (Allah) has sought you to manage their affairs and has tried you through them.”

    Imam Ali’s (as) Instructions to Malik al-Ashtar.

    I think the quote speaks for itself and there is no need for me to comment directly on it.

    All I can say is that I try to live up to the standards set by Imam Ali (as)- and how beautiful a life it is trying to do so.

    You put “inferior” in parentheses assuming that non-believer equals “inferior” from the perspective of believers, which is not necessarily the case. And even if it were, this doesn’t equate with deeming yourself “the exceptional nation” going around bombing whoever crosses your “red lines”.

    Like I said, I think this whole “exceptional nation” thing is deeply rooted in militant Protestantism and is not transferable to Shiaism or other religious outlooks.

    Like Imam (r) said: “We need to rise up and fight the oppressors so God forbid people don’t think Islam is like Christianity.”

    We have an old family friend- for more than 40 years now, Jenabe Aghaye Saeedian who is one the great contemporary poets in Iran and who also happens to be Jewish. I think if you ask him he will confirm to you that I have never treated him as “inferior” in any way. In fact he will roar with laughter at any such suggestion.

    And for the record, because some accuse us of being obscurantists, he has written a very nice commentary of the Taurat which we spent many hours discussing together. And guess what, his commentary is taught at the Hawza in Qom for students interested in studying about other religions (I know too much shocking new info at once for some people that will cause their circuits to overload).

    Again I think you are being influenced by secularism too much which likes to make “believers” the bogeymen of everything bad and evil and proclaim the religion of secularism and laicism as the cure-all of all immoral and unethical social ills.

    Religion isn’t the problem, lack of religion is.

  222. Bussed-in Basiji says:

    Neo-jan,

    What do think about the complete bankruptcy of the US political process? In your view, what should people in the US who care, do about it?

  223. kooshy says:

    Kyhan’ editorial

    اوباما یک شاخص و نشانگر مهم در منحنی سقوط اقتدار آمریکا و کاستی روزافزون انتخاب‌های آن است. انتخاب یک سیاه‌پوست دموکرات برای ریاست نمادین کاخ‌سفید و سپس تدارک جایزه صلح نوبل برای وی و زمزمه شعار تغییر، جملگی برای بازسازی حیثیت و اعتبار لطمه دیده آمریکا در یک دهه گذشته بود اما آقای اوباما اکنون به کسی می‌ماند که پیژامه را روی کت و جوراب را روی پیژامه کشیده باشد. «تروریست‌های القاعده» و «ارتجاع سرکوبگر رژیم سعودی» به انضمام دروغ‌بافی‌های فزاینده دولت آمریکا، حیثیتی برای ابرقدرت الهام‌بخش لیبرال-دموکراسی و حقوق‌بشر باقی نگذاشته‌اند. آمریکا اگر در همین یک ادعای مبارزه با تروریسم القاعده صادق بود باید به کمک دولت و شهروندان سوریه می‌شتافت و اگر بر سر ادعای حمایت از حق حاکمیت ملت‌ها بر سرنوشت خویش صداقت داشت، نباید چشم بر جنایات رژیم سعودی از بحرین و یمن تا عراق و سوریه و لبنان- و حتی علیه شهروندان خویش- می‌بست و ننگ هم‌داستانی با آل‌سعود و ژنرال‌های مصری برای کودتا علیه دولت منتخب مردم را به جان نمی‌خرید
    http://www.kayhan.ir/920618/2.htm

  224. nico says:

    kooshy says:
    September 8, 2013 at 4:00 pm

    Care to translate or paraphrase for non farsi readers ?

  225. Fiorangela says:

    Diane Feinstein, videoed by C Span Sept 5 2013:

    ““I have no doubt that chemical weapons have been used. . . . I asked the CIA to prepare a DVD of specific evidence, largely victims, and what we see means, what pinpointed eyes mean, what the convulsions mean. We received that this morning and it’s horrendous. So we’re having that DVD multiplied. And we’re going to get it out to every member of the Senate and possibly members of the House so that they can at their leisure go through it. . . .

    Q: Is that enough for you to vote Yes for strikes?

    Feinstein: “It’s enough for me. Y’see I think that the prohibition on chemical weapons is well founded. And after you watch exactly what happens, you can see why that’s so. Because they have tons and tons and tons of this stuff. They have one of the largest if not the largest storage bays in the world of chemical weapons. So if they use it, and if they use it as we know they are able to use it, in large amounts, the devastation is huge.

    Now I think 428 children dead on the ground and 1400 adults, that’s a lot of people.

    . . .
    It’s a very serious situation. And he’s got to understand, assad, that there’s a penalty for this. Otherwise you say to everybody, There is no penalty, if you avoid these treaties. And if you go ahead and use this terrible [chemical weapon].”

    + + +

    “Those Angry Days: Roosevelt, Lindbergh, and America’s Fight Over World War II, 1939-1941” by Lynne Olson.

    The frame Olson imposes on the “fight” to go to war is the notion that Americans MUST help out Britain, which is, first, threatened, and later (blessedly) bombed by Germany’s Luftwaffe. Olson refrains from wading into the weeds of the tit-for-tat battle between Churchill and Hitler — the initial Luftwaffe strike on civilian facilities in Britain was a mistake and was relatively minor. Churchill took advantage of the opportunity to pummel Berlin — civilian targets in Berlin, whereupon Hitler retaliated by targeting civilian assets in Britain. Overtures to stop the bombing were ignored, until the wrong party — the Germans — took the upper hand and prosecuted a 57 day Blitzkrieg. Churchill was delighted. So was the British propaganda machine that was operating from headquarters across from St. Patrick’s Cathedral in New York City.

    U.S. military leaders were opposed to US involvement in war between England and Germany; they thought it did not involve US interests; they had close relations and tremendous respect for the professionalism of Germany’s military; they were largely Anglophobic, believing that the British had tricked the US into WWI, with dire effects,*** and anyway, they thought that Britain would probably lose. They were probably correct in the last assessment: As Churchill communicated to FDR, Britain did not have an adequate military force to combat Germany, and Britain was broke.

    Lynne Olson writes:

    “According to detailed reports from Berlin, the Luftwaffe attacks were decimating British airpower and crippling the country’s ports and industries. Army intelligence reports prepared by Truman Smith were circulated throughout the War and State Departments. With their gloomy assessment of Britain’s chances, they bolstered the arguments of those in both departments who opposed giving aid to Britain.

    “Most Americans, however, felt differently: their focus was not on Britain’s losses but on the courage and toughness of its people in standing up to the German onslaught. Such admiration was stimulated by a flood of newspaper and magazine articles–and, above all, radio broadcasts–from American correspondents in London . . .Virtually every issue of Life during that period featured dramatic photographs of the Blitz and its effect on ordinary British citizens. A particularly poignant photo, showing a cute, wide-eyed blond toddler in a hospital bed, her head swathed in bandages and clutching a teddy bear–appeared on Life’s cover and touched hearts everywhere. It soon became a poster for William Allen White’s** committee.”

    —> As I type this Schiefer is interviewing someone [McDonough, Obama’s chief of staff??], don’t know who, who says that despite Charlie Rose’s interview of Bashir Assad in which Assad denies that his government used CW, the “evidence is mounting that Assad did it.” The interviewee calls Assad a liar: “We have the photos of dead babies” says McDonough. “Having seen those videos, I believe Congress will support this resolution.”

    The U.S. used the same tactics in drumming to war in 1939-1941: damn the evidence, rely on emotion, demonize those who demand facts and evidence; herd the American people like sheeple. American moral high ground is built on a mountain of lies.

    [**White was avuncular editor of a Kansas newspaper. FDR persuaded him to head the Nonpartisan Committee for Peace Through Revision of the Neutrality Law. As Olson details, FDR led the US to war incrementally — first, by reversing Neutrality laws; then by activating Lend-Lease; then by enacting a draft; then by protecting convoys of ships to Britain.]

    + + + +
    *** ‘dire effects’ may have been a populist response, by, i.e. warriors wounded or killed, but in fact, the U.S. benefited tremendously from the aftermath of WWI: US ended the conflict with much of the west’s gold in its vaults, which enabled US to become bankers to the world.

  226. nico says:

    http://www.alarabiya.net/articles/2012/01/16/188662.html

    Dated January 2012 BUT :

    “Following reports alleging its involvement in the violent repression of Syrian protestors, Iran’s government said it has not yet interfered in the situation in Syria, but stressed its commitment to the joint defense treaty to which Iran and Syria are signatory.

    Iran has viewed what is happening in Syria as a domestic affair, but it will definitely interfere in case a foreign attack in launched on Syria, a source from the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) told Al Arabiya on condition of anonymity.”

  227. Jay says:

    Okay James, now that you understand that “war” and “sanctions” are not “wants” – that they are tools – it is small hop to: one cannot negotiate, discuss, compromise, etc. on “tools”. A real discussion must be focused on the “real” wants of US/UK and whether or not these “wants” interfere with the rights and progress of the Iranians.

    Therefore, when the West stops insisting on her belligerent “wants” something positive will come out of negotiations.

  228. Karl.. says:

    Nico

    Al arabiya is anti-iran. All you need to know.

  229. kooshy says:

    nico says:

    September 8, 2013 at 4:06 pm

    “Care to translate or paraphrase for non-farsi readers?”

    Nico, here you go sorry no disrespect the only reason I posted a small portion of the editorial was focusing on something that I knowing and living with American mentality I truly agree with, and that is, in 2008 Mr. Obama, a 3 year senator, was propped up and presented to restore US’s governing legitimacy and credibility both internally and externally, but I think for the American
    exciptionalist elite group his acceptance and allowance to run was a stiff price to pay with no concrete benefits to this day.

    http://www.kayhan.ir/920618/2.htm

    Please note words in prentices is my addition interpolations

    “Obama’s election was an important element in downward curve of US’s downfall. Choosing a black democrat as a new symbolic boss of the white house and decorating him with noble peace prize and slogans of change was a process to rebuild US’s damaged credibility and honor in the last decade. But now Mr. Obama looks someone who has worn his pajama over his jacket and pulled his sucks over his pajamas (look like a circus clown). (The support for) Al Qaeda terrorists, the repressive Saudi regime, and the overwhelming lies and deceptions have not left any honor or credibility for the claims of this super power for human rights and democracy.

    If only America was honest to only one of his claims which are terrorism of al Qaeda, she should have rushed to help the Syrian people. And if she (US) was honest with her claims respecting other people’s national sovereignty over their destiny, she wouldn’t close her eyes on Saudi’s atrocities and criminal behavior in Bahrain, Yemen, Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, and even against her own citizens. Paying for it with her life, America has bought the shame of supporting Al Saud’s and the Egyptian Generals who toppled a democratically elected government.”

  230. Fiorangela says:

    incidentally , re Feinstein saying —

    ” Because they [Syria] have tons and tons and tons of this stuff. They have one of the largest if not the largest storage bays in the world of chemical weapons. ”

    = = =

    1. U.S. companies supplies Saddam Hussein with 650,000 metric tons of chemical precursors in Iraq’s war on Iran. 100,000 Iranians, many of them civilians; statistical probability = some of the those 100,000 were (gasp) children.

    2. According to Amy Smithson, PhD, of Nonproliferation Institute, U.S. and Russia agreed to destroy their stockpiles of CW. U.S. has “such a whopping huge” supply of CW that it has not yet been able to complete destruction of it.

    Not certain how large “whopping huge” is. Syria is said to have a thousand tons of chemical weapons, 1/650th of the amt sold by Americans to Saddam.

  231. James Canning says:

    Kooshy,

    Assad government welcomed the overthrow of Morsi. Morsi wanted Assad overthrown.

  232. James Canning says:

    Jay,

    Real “wants” of the UK? William Hague said he wanted better relations with Syria, Iran, Hezbollah, and Hamas. But Iran did a great deal to wreck Hague’s plans. If you prefer, Hague sought better relations with Iran, until Iran announced intent to treble proudction of 20% U.

  233. James Canning says:

    On another note, Douglas Todd, writing in the Vancouver Sun Aug 24: “The Pew poll found ‘Asian-Americans were the highest-income and best-educaated’ of all ethno-cultural groups [in US].” And in same article: “43 per cent of residents [of Metro Vancouver] have Asian ancestry, predominantly Chinese.”

  234. James Canning says:

    Fiorangela,

    Is Feinstein simply a liar, in her claim Syria might use huge amounts of CW if the US fails to attack? I think so.

  235. Jay says:

    James,

    I will spell this out – only this once – and, I will refer you to this henceforth.

    In international relations, the measurable quantities are: 1) resources, 2) actors, 3) outcomes.

    In international relations, you can “want” control over 1,2, 3, or any combination. These are measurable quantities. They can be evaluated. The statement of “want” about anything else is rhetorical nonsense.

    To achieve “wants”, one resorts to tools that involve: 1) physical power, 2) psychological power, 3) political power.

    Saying that UK wants “better relations” with Iran is not a “want” – it is not objectively measurable. The closest element of “international” want to what you call “better relations” is: outcomes. Outcomes refer to end-points of interaction processes. The only end-point in the interaction process stated by the UK relates to limits with respect to Iran’s nuclear technology.

    In other words, by “better relations” the UK means a priori control over the outcome. This is an exercise of power.

    Now if this exercise of power is what you refer to when you say UK wants “better relations”, then I agree with you. However, this is hardly equitable or justifiable.

  236. kooshy says:

    ما در درون سینه هوایی نهفته‌ایم بر باد اگر رود دل ما زان هوا رود

    We have keept an air in the chest
    If our hearth is gone with the wind
    Is because of that air

    Hafez

  237. Sineva says:

    James Canning says:
    September 8, 2013 at 1:57 pm
    No james iran might be richer,but that does not automatically mean stronger.I`m curious as to how you think iran could have been any stronger than it already is without sanctions?,I think irans potential japan option makes it pretty strong as any attack is very likely to turn that potential into a reality

  238. kooshy says:

    Looking at now secretary of state, Mr. Kerry’s persistence pushing, lying and trying to justify another illegal and criminal war of attrition by the elitist regime in US that he serves, and her few client states, takes me back to when he was running for president in 2004 when he famously said “he was for it before he was against it” although he did for the Iraq war and just as recent as two days ago he again claimed that he is one of few against the Iraq war.

    No shame for this person, but on larger scale do the people who voted for Kerry back in 2004 would think if he would have been elected he would been any different than Gorge Bush, Dick warmonger Cheney, or our own noble peace laureate president O Bomber, I think not . Some expatriate Iranians claimed because his daughter is married to an Iranian doctor he will be fairer to Iran. Wishful thinking for a power monger

    This country desperately needs a fundamental change, a new deep change in her political structure.

    Thu Sep 05, 2013 at 08:55 PM PDT.

    “John Kerry Has No Shame, Claims He Opposed the Iraq War”

    http://www.dailykos.com/story/2013/09/05/1236702/-John-Kerry-Has-No-Shame-Claims-He-Opposed-the-Iraq-War#

  239. Sineva says:

    James Canning says:
    September 8, 2013 at 1:15 pm
    Those weapons were intended to be used in the event of an invasion of syria,they and their delivery systems were there to make the israelis or anyone else think twice,in short they were a deterrent against a hostile,aggressive nuclear armed neighbor and considering israels history the syrians would have bee stupid not to have a wmd counter to israes nukes,now how effective they were is hard to say,now the fact that syria has not been invaded could lead one to think that they did their job or at least played a role in deterring possible aggressors.Personally I think biologicals would have been a better weapon against a civilian population but chem is more controllable,tho` its likely the syrians have bio as well

  240. Empty says:

    fyi says,

    RE: All: What is wrong with these pictures? http : // http:// www. fardanews.com/fa/news/285501/تصاویر-طرح-تشدید-برخورد-با-بد-پوششان “

    For one, it would be considered insane for human beings to NOT LEARN lessons from another society and NOT to attempt to prevent these problems happening in one’s own society: http://www.apa.org/pi/women/programs/girls/report-full.pdf

    Quotes from the report:

    “There are many examples of the sexualization of girls and girlhood in U.S. culture.Toy manufacturers pro-duce dolls wearing black leather miniskirts, feather boas, and thigh-high boots and market them to 8- to 12-year-old girls (LaFerla, 2003). Clothing stores sell thongs sized for 7– to 10-year-old girls (R. Brooks, 2006; Cook & Kaiser, 2004), some printed with slogans such as “eye candy” or “wink wink” (Cook & Kaiser, 2004; Haynes, 2005; Levy, 2005a; Merskin, 2004); other thongs sized for women and late adolescent girls are imprinted with characters from Dr. Seuss and the Muppets (e.g.,see http: // www. princesscassie.com/children/cat. shtml) (Levy, 2005a; Pollett & Hurwitz, 2004). In the world of child beauty pageants, 5-year-old girls wear fake teeth, hair extensions, and makeup and are encouraged to “flirt” onstage by batting their long, false eyelashes (Cookson, 2001). On prime-time television, girls can watch fashion shows in which models made to resemble little girls wear sexy lingerie (e.g., the CBS broadcast of Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show on December 6, 2005). Journalists, child advocacy organizations, parents, and psychologists have become alarmed, arguing that the sexualization of girls is a broad and increasing problem and is harmful to girls.”

    “We propose that the sexualization of girls occurs within three interrelated spheres.:

    l. The contribution by society—that is, the cultural1 norms,expectations, and values that are communicated in myriad ways, including through the media. A culture can be infused with sexualized representations of girls and women, suggesting that such sexualization is good and normal.

    2. An interpersonal contribution—Girls can be treated as, and encouraged to be,sexual objects by family, peers,and others.

    3. Self-sexualization—Girls may treat and experience themselves as sexual objects (Fredrickson & Roberts, 1997; McKinley & Hyde, 1996). If girls learn that sexualized behavior and appearance are approved of and rewarded by society and by the people (e.g., peers) whose opinions matter most to them, they are likely to internalize these standards, thus engaging in self-sexualization.”

    “We review evidence concerning the prevalence of the sexualization of girls and women in each of these three spheres.We also review evidence that links sexualization to
    a variety of harmful consequences.These consequences include harm to the sexualized individuals themselves, to their interpersonal relationships, and to society. For example, there is evidence that sexualization contributes to impaired cognitive performance in college-aged women, and related research suggests that viewing material that is sexually objectifying can contribute to body dissatisfaction,
    eating disorders, low self-esteem, depressive affect, and even physical health problems in high-school-aged girls and in young women.The sexualization of girls may not only reflect sexist attitudes, a societal tolerance of sexual violence,
    and the exploitation of girls and women but may also contribute to these phenomena.”

    I strongly recommend reading the full report to anyone who is truly concerned about what is happening to the critical half of humanity: the half that is also in charge of bringing up the other half.

  241. Sineva says:

    James Canning says:
    September 7, 2013 at 4:58 pm
    The decision to build a nuclear deterrent is irans and irans alone,it is not up to the west or anybody else to “allow” iran the bomb,now the west could attempt to militarily stop iran from doing this with air strikes and the like but as the israelis found out with osiraq you might wind up inadvertently doing the very thing you`re trying to prevent.The west does not have the ability to destroy irans nuclear program completely,it might be able to set it back months but you can bet it would be reconstituted in a new far more robust configuration that would be very resistant to any future attacks,now if the west were smart it would acknowledge that the military option lacks real credibility and that that would be one more reason for a deal,however when it comes to the middle east and the west the whole concept of “smart” does not appear in the wests lexicon

  242. fyi says:

    Empty says:
    September 8, 2013 at 9:59 pm

    Rubbish!

    All I see is that the security organs of the Islamic Republic of Iran harassing Muslims who are going about their business.

    Another splendid example of the Love-Hate Relationship that obtains among human beings; in this case by men and women who take pleasure in despising and humiliating others while hiding behind Islam.

    Shame, shame, shame.

    And you claim that Liberal Democracy is dead?

    Try again; respect other Muslims.

  243. Empty says:

    fyi,

    That post was not meant for you (thus the statement “fyi says”). Please do point the finger of shame toward yourself as when you speak, you speak your opinion and when others speak, you only hear the echos of your own voice and totally skip over any valid point the other person might have presented. Your arrogance has pulled a thick curtain over your eyes.

  244. fyi says:

    Empty says:
    September 9, 2013 at 12:09 am

    If you want to keep your comments private, do not post them on a public forum.

    Yes, humiliating and harassing women whose attire is not very different than what women wear in Pakistan is the height of Islamic Piety.

    And why pick on the hair style of men?

    Is that also un-Islamic for some reason?

    Why send letters of reprimand with threats of unspecified disciplinary action to members of this or that foot-ball team?

    Are these people mad?

  245. Fiorangela says:

    Does anyone know of any more reporting about Jeff Feltman’s visit to Tehran?

    It occurs to me that the removal of Morsi and the cementing in place of Egypt’s military was part of the constellation of events that culminated in the ghastly gas attacks of Aug. 21. How clever of Assad to have scheduled the attack so propitiously.

  246. Bussed-in Basiji says:

    kooshy-jan,

    As long as so-called liberals, progressives keep voting for Democrats like Obama, Kerry etc. nothing will change- same old domestic exploitation/austerity and international death and destruction.

    As long as so-called conservatives, libertarians keep voting for Republicans like McCain, Bush etc. nothing will change- same old…

    So what should they do instead? This is the real question that needs to be addressed by Americans.

    Nobody even dares to THINK about other things and this tragedy shows the real pathetic state of US/western civilization. Other stuff is minor compared to this.

  247. Bussed-in Basiji says:

    Empty-jan,

    Forget it, you presented a very nice report showing the negative effects of the sexualization of pre-pubescent girls in the west and the kos-khol keeps blabbing on about his favorite ogde (he never did say which Pink Floyd album they took away from him…)

    Ironic that western feminists agree with you more on this subject than “freedom-loving” old male immigrant pensioners seeking “the comfortable life”.

    Like I said, the hijab issue has not been a priority for the Islamic republic for 35 years and is not a priority today. I wish it were a priority, but Imam and SL have deemed other things priorities for the time being- like economic, scientific and military advancement- and I obey them.

    As long as the law does not specifically define what constitutes hijab, we will be arguing about this. And the sheep in Majlis don’t want to touch this matter. And some on the left are very happy to keep this thing unresolved and use it to provoke society whenever it benefits them. They actually don’t give a toss about the ladies and girls involved.

    Anyway, I gave you the reality of the sad situation, comments by kos-khols on this subject who haven’t lived in Iran 30 plus years and who are not even Muslim, are irrelevant and filed under the heading of ogde-o-kine.

    I think this might be the hundredth time we have discussed this- to no avail for kos-khols. Interestingly he brings it up whenever he’s cornered usually linking CIA-funded Farda.

    Don’t take the bait.

  248. Rehmat says:

    Dan Senor, who along with his guru, Nicholas D. Kristof, worked to spin the Iraq war for the Bush administration, said on Sunday that he was worried that if Congress votes against military action in Syria then lawmakers may refuse to use military force against Iran for the rest of President Barack Obama’s term.

    http://rehmat1.com/2013/09/09/senor-no-attack-on-syria-means-no-attack-on-iran/

  249. BiBiJon says:

    Empty says:
    September 8, 2013 at 9:59 pm

    Thank you for sharing fact-based scholarly reports from the American Psychological Association.

    I note that the membership of the task force responsible for the report are,
    Eileen L. Zurbriggen, PhD (Chair)
    Rebecca L. Collins, PhD
    Sharon Lamb, EdD
    Tomi-Ann Roberts,PhD
    Deborah L. Tolman, EdD
    L.Monique Ward, PhD
    Jeanne Blake (Public Member)

    To those on this forum who regard fyi, who has in the past “established” the lower capacities of women, and blacks, to be more authoritative, then God bless.

  250. BiBiJon says:

    If only they’d apply that to Iran’s nuclear case…
    ===================================================

    In a statement to an IAEA board meeting on Monday, U.S. Ambassador Joseph Macmanus said: “It is our view that requests for comprehensive risk analyses of hypothetical scenarios are beyond the IAEA’s statutory authority.”

    The IAEA “will have to review such a request in light of legal authorities, mandate and resources and must determine whether there is a scientific basis for conducting a highly speculative investigation of this kind,” Macmanus said, according to a copy of his speech.

    From http://in.reuters.com/article/2013/09/09/syria-crisis-russia-nuclear-idINDEE98809K20130909

    Macmanus was talking about Syria. Imagine how apt his words would be if directed at the “possible military dimension” speculation consuming a huge chunk of IAEA’s resources on the Iran file.

  251. M. Ali says:

    fyi’s bringing up Iran’s hijab issue is like western liberals talking about hating Iran and when you try to logically discuss the case with them, they say, “Yeah, but Iran hangs gays!!!!” and then you realize that it just takes too much effort to discuss the complexities with them.

  252. fyi says:

    M. Ali says:

    September 9, 2013 at 9:18 am

    Harrassment and humiliation of Muslims by security organs of the state is not a minor thing; it is going to the core of what sort of relationship obtains between the state and human beings.

    We will beat you on the head becuase 1) we can, 2) we envy you, 3) we wish to humiliate you so that we feel better about ourselves, 4)you are powerless, 5) you have no intrinsic rights 6) you are not one of us.

  253. fyi says:

    BiBiJon says:

    September 9, 2013 at 8:37 am

    Whatever the intrinsic capacities of other human beings are, they are endowed with intrinsic rights by God.

    Now, when a drunkard somewhere in Europe assaults a veiled Muslim woman; we never hear the end of this great affront to Islam and the dignity of the individual Muslim woman.

    But when the security organs of the Islamic state publicly assault and humiliate and intimidate Muslim women – that is a “nothing” – a non-issue.

    And they have no shame; they have publish these photographs for the entire world to see the extent of Islamic Disaster in Iran.

    According to Islamic Tradition, there has been 124,000 prophets and messengers (of God); some with the Book and some without

    Well that entire Prophetic Tradition has been reduced – in the street in Tehran – to a policeman and chador-clad woman harrasing a Muslim women ghoing about her business with her son.

    And then there is the threatening letter sent to the footbalist regarding their hair – promising future unspecified action against them if they do not alter their hari-do.

    I thing it will be a good idea for you and others such as you to stand with the powerless in this case in Iran.

  254. fyi says:

    All:

    In Lahore:

    http://blogs.wsj.com/scene/2012/01/13/scenestyle-liberty-market-lahore/

    I suppose some would claim that this woman is not a Muslim.

  255. Photi says:

    Just saw Flynt on MSNBC discussing Assad with Ambassador Ginsberg. Too short an appearance for sure, the Leveretts need to be on shows like Hardball or Up discussing Syria. It was interesting though to see Ginsberg’s propaganda juxtaposed to Flynt’s realism and discussion of facts. Ginsberg looked bewildered when Flynt pointed out the broad support Assad still has in Syrian society.

  256. BiBiJon says:

    fyi says:
    September 9, 2013 at 9:52 am

    I find your arguments wanting.

    It is not that there is “no end” to complaints about hate crimes against Muslim women. The problem is that there’s no beginning. Indeed, as I posted earlier, The NY Times Paris Bureau Chief surmises that Saddam’s 1980s gassing of hundreds of thousands did not cause Westerners’ humanitarian streak was not discomfited because it was Muslims killing Muslims thus saving Westerners the trouble. From this polity you want who to take lesson about what exactly.

    Equating isolated actions of individual police with overarching narratives does not make convincing argument.

    You’re basically saying appearances are everything. You need to rise above that kind of mentality.

  257. fyi says:

    BiBiJon says:

    September 9, 2013 at 11:13 am

    There is no “narrative” here; just Muslim wonem being denigrated by the Islamic State – that is all.

    And it is not I who is stating that “appearance is everything” – you need to bring that issue up with Iranian authorities.

  258. Photi says:

    Motivated mercenaries:

    “”Initially Saudi Arabia denied the existence of this program. But the testimony of the released prisoners forced the Saudi government to admit, in private circles, its existence,” AINA writes. “The Saudis agreed to stop their clandestine activities and work towards finding a political solution on condition that knowledge of this program would not be made public.”

    http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/world/2013/01/21/saudi-inmates-fight-syria-commute-death-sentences/1852629/

  259. BiBiJon says:

    fyi says:
    September 9, 2013 at 11:17 am

    You have a pedantic habit of mind and you get lost in details.

    Social conformity is an issue in every society. Running off one’s mouth about “disaster” this and that is interesting only to the extent of discovering your peculiar obsessions, fantasies; no more.

    Just think how many of those tasered in the US just didn’t look ‘right’ in the eye of the law enforcement official. http://www.amnestyusa.org/news/press-releases/amnesty-international-urges-stricter-limits-on-police-taser-use-as-us-death-toll-reaches-500

    Now, according to your standards I guess I have to call America’s liberal democracy a “disaster” and disregard whatever else that society has achieved. I won’t and you shouldn’t.

  260. Ataune says:

    @fyi

    Regarding the question of “hijab”, the most compelling argument advanced by some here is that neither the system of government in Iran nor the citizenry as a whole perceive it to be a high priority. I believe this is a correct assessment of the reality. Now, that is not to say that the norms of the political society shouldn’t evolve based on the needs of the time. But, given the context of aggressive Western policies against Iran, those needs are mainly geared up towards strengthening the state and its foundation. As a general rule, I subscribe to the idea that not each and every individual’s want can be satisfied “here and now”. Therefore, practically speaking and regardless of the rightfulness or not of the demands, the wishes of let’s say 10% of the population, particularly when it’s an issue offending the feeling of the majority of the population and which can cause social disturbance, cannot be the highest priority of the civil society.

    Besides, there is another argument to be advanced here. The concept of “Personal freedom”, like any other public aspects of the human societies, can be used and abused by politicians. And the recent history shows that the ruling elites in the West almost always cared less about the civil society than their own power games and interests when prescribing such “values”. A recent example as you certainly know, is the “neo-conservatives” re-promotion of the ideology of “freedom and democracy” being one of the main tools of the, on-going, American aggressive foreign policy in the middle-east. So the question becomes, how prophesizing an endless war in the middle-east for the next 20 years or so – with the outcome being the triumph of the “axis of resistance” !! – can theoretically reconcile with the bringing up of the issue of “hejab” as a high priority “personal freedom” and civil rights issue now, and the recommendation to the state to leave NPT and start building “deterrence”. I should also notice that Iran leaving the NPT will give aggressive players in the western world all the legal excuses to promote and hasten the hot war they are planning in the region according to you.

  261. fyi says:

    BiBiJon says:

    September 9, 2013 at 11:38 am

    You are clutching at straws trying to justify the un-justifiable.

    “Deatils” you say; well I have a very small existence and those things that you call “Details” could mean the difference between contentment and misery.

    I know such details may not be important to many intellectuals – but they do to ordinary people.

    That the Liberal Democracy in US is decaying and degenerating there is no doubt.

    But I do not think one should take pleasure in its demise or systemic failures since it condemns 320 million souls to live miserable lives.

  262. fyi says:

    Ataune says:

    September 9, 2013 at 11:51 am

    It matters not if these incidents affect 1% of population or 10% of it or 100% of it.

    The Islamic Government is arrogating to itself – in reality falliable human beings in the State of Fall – to judge who is and is not Islamic.

    This is the problem, even if a single person is thus effected, it is one too many.

    When the so-called “Jim Crowe Laws” were passed in the United States late inthe 19-th century, the African-American population was rather small.

    I am certain that someone made similr argument such as your then; with the same disastrous results.

  263. BiBiJon says:

    fyi says:
    September 9, 2013 at 12:00 pm

    “The Islamic Government is arrogating to itself – in reality falliable human beings in the State of Fall – to judge who is and is not Islamic.”

    No. The government arrogates to itself, enforced by, occasionally fallible, law enforcement officers, to judge what is and isn’t proper attire.

    Keep your confusions to yourself.

  264. Ataune says:

    @fyi

    Actually, it does matter. If your goal is respect of the rule of law, this is the only path that I know of. Nowhere have I seen a system of law “out of nothing” that can be applied to a given society and which will satisfy each and every persons wants and desires. Individuals aiming to live harmoniousely in the community, the ones forming the civil society, do understand this fact. They know that not all their wishes will be exhausted legally “here and now”. A typical example are Armenians living on the Iranian plateau for more than thousand years, among a majority muslim community, and accepting, and more importantly satisfied of, the legal system of the majority.

  265. fyi says:

    Ataune says:

    September 9, 2013 at 12:16 pm

    The Law cannot infinge on the intrinsic rights of a human being.

  266. fyi says:

    BiBiJon says:

    September 9, 2013 at 12:16 pm

    Hmmm..

    So the Muslim women in Islamic Republic of Pakistan are more free than in Islamic Republic of Iran.

  267. BiBiJon says:

    Food for thought ….
    ===================

    As the edifice of imperial presidency implodes in the wake of opinion polls (7 out of 10 say don’t bomb), and G18+US+Russia voted evenly for and against only strong action, Germany and EU did not sign, and AIPAC’s all-too-visible inability to corral congressmen to support the emperor, neo-conservetism, and liberal interventionism is taking a huge drubbing. So, too are the media who where beating the war drums miles ahead of even the neocons. One hopes that the disaster of an almost war (Syria) will be a better wooden stake in the heart of the evil that the previous disasters of actual wars (Iraq, Libya). With almost wars patriotic passions are not aroused as much and therefore there’s hope for rational, objective analysis.

    The crumbling edifice creates a vulnerability, which is a good thing. In all relationships, including adversarial ones, you cannot conduct business with the self-deluded invulnerable, the omnipotent. Once vulnerabilities are exposed, then merely not taking (too much) advantage of them, starts to create a more workable atmosphere. It is now, with Obama’s flank exposed that Iran, and Russia can strike with acts of magnanimity to help save US’ face, and secure peace and stability in the ME for a generation.

    Could Russia and Iran help forge a new cooperative world order?

    http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/world/2013/09/09/russia-syria/2785703/

  268. Ataune says:

    @fyi

    What are the intrinsic rights of a human being that a system of law cannot infringe upon ? More realted to this topic, is for example strolling bare-naked part of those intrinsic laws ? What is the intrinsic limit of the attire to be worn ? Or maybe there shouldn’t be any law at all on those issues ?

  269. James Canning says:

    BiBiJon,

    Russia urges Syria to put its CW into hands of third party. Iran should back this, as of course should the US.

  270. fyi says:

    Ataune says:

    September 9, 2013 at 1:05 pm

    Another canard by another person who has no other argument left.

    So, are Iranian women harlots clamoring to walk around naked, like animals?

    Per the picture: is color green the same as being naked?

    And that Pakistani student; is she on her way to be walking naked one of these days?

    As for the intrinsic rights:

    To come and go as you please without being harrased, intimidated, and otherwise humiliated by security organs of the state.

    To be free from the maliscious envy of other females who envy your youth, your class, your style, your beauty.

  271. James Canning says:

    In his column in the Financial Times today, Ed Luce observes in effect that absurd claims have been made regarding supposed loss of power of the president, if Obama does not gain US Congressional approval for US attack on Syria.

  272. James Canning says:

    Rehmat,

    Nonsense argument by Dan Senor. (That the US would not be able to block Iranian effort to build nukes, if the US Congress fails to endorse foolish American attack on Syria.)

  273. James Canning says:

    fyi,

    Did you notice that Seattle-born Kendra Spears married the eldest son of Prince Karim Aga Khan the other day? I think she was a Mormon but converted prior to the wedding.

  274. James Canning says:

    Fiorangela,

    Best intel is that Bashar al-Assad did not order the CW attack in Damascus last month. (German intel)

  275. Ataune says:

    @fyi

    Wearing green is a political statement. If the state has found that a political movement is conspiring to undermine its existence, even the UN charter + preamble (to which you are likely refering to as the intrinsic right of the individuals) is allowing this state to legally forbid such activities. The key here is the word legally, which you deliberately fail to weigh in into your “arguments”.

    Then you assert: “To come and go as you please without being harrased, intimidated, and otherwise humiliated by security organs of the state.” In a legal context such statement is equivalent to saying that individual can go bare-naked as they please. So my question, which you failed to answer, still remains: who defines the limit on the attire, is it the society’s norm or each and every individual wish and desire ? And, in general, how you go to evolve from a society based on the rule of the mightiest to the rule of the law ?

  276. fyi says:

    Ataune says:

    September 9, 2013 at 1:50 pm

    Oh yes, so when and if Khezr shows up in Tehran, he would be arrested!

    What defines the limits is “Custom”.

  277. James Canning says:

    Fiorangela,

    (Re: Jeffrey Feltman’s mission to Tehran) “[T]he sultan [of Oman] had an initiative for Iran to decrease the level of uranium enrichment in return for the West observing Iran’s right to enrich and easing finaincial sanctions.” (Al Monitor Aug 26)

  278. James Canning says:

    Karl..,

    I favor a nuke-free planet.

    You dislike Sergei Lavrov’s plan (for UN to take custody of Syrian CW)?

  279. James Canning says:

    Sineva,

    I agree with Sultan Qaboos of Oman. That Iran should be allowed to enrich to 5%, and the sanctions should be eased. If other problems are resolved, all sanctions should end and normal relations between US and Iran should be re-established.

    I think you are a bit cavalier about the damage Iran would incur if all oil exports by sea were cut off.

  280. James Canning says:

    Sineva,

    Syria had ZERO need to stockpile CW to ensure Israel did not attack Syria using nukes.

    Syria had little reason to fear Israeli attack, unless Israel needed to try to take out Hezbollah prior to war in the Gulf.

  281. Ataune says:

    @fyi

    Don’t play the fool. You understand what I’m saying. Wearing green in a certain context does have a political meaning. Nowhere have I seen any political order based on the law to recomend breaking it, either by the rulers or the ruled ones, and be successfull with the endeover of peacfully advancing the community.

    And yes the “Custom”, or in another word the Norm, defines the limit. In some places this is written into law, in some others it’s not. It is either enforced or relaxed. In Iran today, this norm is sometimes enforced with more energy than other times. But this is not the vital and highest priority issue for the civil society. And obviously essentially not comparable to “Jim Crow” costums.

  282. Jay says:

    James Canning says:
    September 9, 2013 at 1:55 pm

    James Canning says:
    September 9, 2013 at 2:01 pm

    James Canning says:
    September 9, 2013 at 2:09 pm

    In light of our conversation thread concluding with my post on September 8, 2013 at 8:18 pm, your comments are devoid of useful content.

  283. fyi says:

    Ataune says:

    September 9, 2013 at 2:10 pm

    “Custom” is not the same as “Law”.

    NOwhere in the Quran is it stated that Muslim men be circumcised.

    Nowhere, in Iranian Law and as far as I know, it is stipulated that boys – upon birth – ought to be circumsized.

    You do not understand that there is zealotary is an expression of malice and envy towards “better” class of Iranians.

  284. James Canning says:

    Jay,

    Jargon. I prefer plain speaking. Hague wanted, wished, sought, hoped for. Better relations with Iran. Meaning, ambassador of UK in Tehran. Ambassador of Iran in London. Etc. No “control of outcome”.

  285. Karl.. says:

    James

    Thats not what I asked,
    I asked if you want UK to stop its WMD nuclear program. Yes or no?

  286. Ataune says:

    Was I saying that Custom = Law ? I remember I clearly stating that cusotms are sometimes implemented by the laws sometimes not.

    You asserted that individuals should be able “To come and go as [they] please”, I replied that the majority of the community is the one defining how individuals come and go. I asked you then if personal wishes and desires set the limit on attire and you replied no, it was the customs. I am fully satisfied with your response here since for me what customs and laws have in common is that they are both trying to reflect the norms of the society. i.e. the way the majority of the community think what is NORMAL to believe, to say, and to act in the community.

    I am not a doctor in religious matter and cannot answer on the question of circumcision in Islam. What I believ I know is that in the jewish religion this seems to be defined as a Covenent between the choosen people and Yahwa while in Islam it is, maybe opst-facto but surely more rationnaly, introduced as a health issue.

    Expression of “malice” and “envy” are beyond the scope of our discussion here. Human beings might act based on weaknesses or strength but the matter of how to discuss the way of achieving the optimum political order is a question of correctness or fallacy.

  287. James Canning says:

    Karl..,

    Are you following the US-Russian negotiations for reducing numbers of nukes etc?

    Are you suggesting Iran should try to build nukes unless the UK gets rid of its nukes?

  288. nico says:

    fyi says:
    September 9, 2013 at 12:47 pm

    “The Law cannot infinge on the intrinsic rights of a human being”

    What is your view about intrindic rights of human brings ? Could you lidt them ?
    Then what laws you do think Iran “regime” infringes ?

    Hijab is forbidden in France in the name if laicity in public area such as school, adiministration and so on.
    Do you deem that to be against human intrinsic right ?
    If yes, do you think France to be a repressive regime ?

    To the opposite such mad militant like the femen are allowed in France to riot bare naked with “fuck god” tatooed on their breast.
    Such militant are praised by the French political establishment, supported in all their deeds and have never faced legal problem.

    But there is not a day without a full dark dressed woman being harassed by the police.

    Do you think such state of affair is progressive ?

    I take that one of the intrinsic right you are speaking about is for everyone to enjoy his/het own body.
    Good enough.

    The issue is that whithout limitation you could just justify wild prostitution, limitless abortion or surrogate motherhood for money.

    Remind you of some similar situation or political debate in the west ?

    What all those things have in common ?

    Well, destruction of religion. Destruction of the sacred.
    To be replaced by short term pleasure and enjoyement.
    Against all principles and all that found human dignity and society.
    Then all is measured by money.

    Should you be a principled and rightfull person in the wedt but without money. You are considered a failure.

    I apologize if I get you wrong.
    But your godless western like position is deeply disturbing to me.

  289. Jay says:

    James Canning says:
    September 9, 2013 at 2:35 pm

    Jargon and plain talk is just that, “talk”.

    The reason for definition and precision in international relations is to reduce the chances of getting conned by “slicksters”!

    You can “want” an intangible and unquantifiable all you want, but that is just “talk”, “jargon” – devoid of actionable and useful content.

    I suspect that my post on September 8, 2013 at 8:18 pm got to the heart of the matter. Your “plain talk” simply means that Iran must submit to the “outcome” desired by the West because the West has power.

    If that is not what your “plain talk” is about, then use the quantifiable framework outlined above to state the West’s “want” – Resources, actors, or outcome. This is “plain talk” James – 1, 2, 3, or a combination?

  290. Fiorangela says:

    Bussed-in Basiji says: September 8, 2013 at 8:49 am

    My (romantic) version of the mental landscape of the typical Iranian is one that is informed by Iran’s national literature — complex, ideosyncratic, life-affirming and ready-to-mind.

    The United States has no unifying epic like the Shahnameh. The unifying elements of American culture (excepting the product of the seat of America’s religion, Hollywood) are games — football, baseball, basketball. The images and language foreign policy makers rely upon to explain policy involve games and their binary characteristic: winning-losing. I don’t hear policymakers speaking of Raskolnikov’s repentance, or of the flawed nobility of Atticus Finch. Complex literary themes do not seem as present in the American mind as I imagine, for example, the reconciliation of Sam and Zal is in the Iranian mind.

  291. nico says:

    Jay,

    “I suspect that my post on September 8, 2013 at 8:18 pm got to the heart of the matter. Your “plain talk” simply means that Iran must submit to the “outcome” desired by the West because the West has power.”

    Exactly what I argued for months.
    Mr Canning is another racist supremacist believing that might maked right.

    Fyi argue that Mr Canning position is due to Mr Canning calculus that Iran would be better off accessing to western demands.

    For me that is just rhetorical difference.

    The litmus test being Mr Canning NEVER criticizing the Anhlo polities in a principled manner.

    … I stick by my opinion.

  292. nico says:

    Pepe Escobar.
    “The (farcical) emperor is naked”
    http://atimes.com/atimes/Middle_East/MID-03-090913.html

  293. James Canning says:

    Nico,

    Israel demands Iran permanently stop enriching to 5%. I support Iranian enrichment to 5.

    I believe in “might makes right”? Nonsense. Utter rubbish.

  294. fyi says:

    nico says:

    September 9, 2013 at 2:56 pm

    My position is very clear; leave women alone to show judgement as to what to wear.

    A typical woman is an order of magnitude more sensible than a typical man.

    And I do not support the position of the French Government regarding Hijab.

  295. James Canning says:

    Nico,

    Yes, I do believe Iran would today be much stronger if it had never re-started enriching uranium. This does not mean I think Iran must stop all enrichment.

  296. Ataune says:

    @fyi

    “My position is very clear; leave women alone to show judgement as to what to wear.”

    Your position is not clear at all. Your answer, in this same thread, to my question of, who defines the limit on the attire, is it the society’s norm or each and every individual wish and desire ? was:

    “What defines the limits is “Custom”.”

  297. James Canning says:

    Nico,

    To repeat, William Hague sought better British relations with Iran. He made no claim whatever that this meant Iran would have to accept control of its foreign policy by the UK. Silly nonsense.

  298. nico says:

    James Canning says:
    September 9, 2013 at 3:23 pm

    Do you think Mr Bush, Cheney, Clinton, Obama, Blair, Cameron, Sarkoszy o be genocidal war criminal for their illegal war and embargo in Irak, afghanistan and Lybia based on international laws and principles ?

    I think yes.

    I think you are a racist supremacist who does not recognize western criminality.

    No need for an answer. I am used to your coward evasive answers. And I do not care a whit about your excuses.

  299. fyi says:

    Ataune says:

    September 9, 2013 at 3:29 pm

    All right, let me spell it out for you.

    Leave it to women to gauge the Customs of their societies and to dress themselves accordingly.

  300. nico says:

    fyi says:
    September 9, 2013 at 3:25 pm

    “My position is very clear; leave women alone to show judgement as to what to wear.A typical woman is an order of magnitude more sensible than a typical man.”

    Is that all ? dress code.
    Pretty short to qualify it a fundamental disaster.

  301. fyi says:

    nico says:

    September 9, 2013 at 3:50 pm

    What is disaster is that this simple approach is discarded in favor of this:

    “We will beat you into Paradise.”

  302. nico says:

    fyi says:
    September 9, 2013 at 3:54 pm

    “What is disaster is that this simple approach is discarded in favor of this:
    “We will beat you into Paradise.””

    Again I apology but such ideological slogan is devoid of true qualitative and quantitative meaning.

    I would rather call the US rate of population in prison to be a fundamental disaster.

  303. Ataune says:

    @fyi

    Then there is no sense talking about custom here. The restrictions imposed by the customs and law on the individuals’ state of nature are not defined by the acts of those individuals that gauge them. it is the other way around: Customs and laws define what acts are prohibited or not by individuals in the community. Now obviously to change some restrictions that seems obsolete a process should exist, but this is not the topic of the discussion here.

    If we go by the percept you just described, if a man decides “based on his jugement” that he desires to go bare-naked to work, he should be allowed to do that without any restriction by the community.

    I hope you see how counter-intuitive, and I am putting it mildly, this is when trying to build a hypothetical society based on the rule of law. And this not even yet having addressed the practical aspect of what you are saying.

  304. fyi says:

    Ataune says:

    September 9, 2013 at 4:03 pm

    I am not saying anything profound here; only to leave women alone.

    And to stop making Muslims’ lives miserable in the Muslim state.

  305. nico says:

    Fyi,

    http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_incarceration_rate

    Could you confirm which country is a fundamental disaster and a police state ?

  306. fyi says:

    nico says:

    September 9, 2013 at 4:02 pm

    Americans have their own problems in their country.

    In fact, they need a “Surge” inside their own country.

    But this is irrelevant to the misery that the Islamic state is inflicting on Muslims.

    Are they going to arrest trees and frogs next?

  307. fyi says:

    nico says:

    September 9, 2013 at 4:15 pm

    Again, irrelevant.

    Cuba is number 5, what do you make of that?

  308. nico says:

    fyi says:
    September 9, 2013 at 4:19 pm

    Sure “beat to heaven” is much more convincing…

  309. Ataune says:

    @fyi

    “I am not saying anything profound here;”

    Then leave this to what really it is: a secondary issue that only matters for 10% of the society and which even for them is not really an important issue. Don’t compare it to “Jim Crow” which was a matter of life or death and crime against human beings and hope for a time that women won’t be an object for the sexual satisfaction of men.

  310. fyi says:

    Ataune says:

    September 9, 2013 at 4:34 pm

    You still do not get it; God is not into percentages – for he cares about All – those who have lived, those who are living and those yet to be born,

    He cares about every single individual human.

    “Jim Crowe” was not an issue of Life and Death – it was one of Dignity – just as in this case.

  311. Ataune says:

    @fyi

    I am not talking about God’s will, I am talking about human like me and you discussing a hypothetical subject. If you are not saying anything “profound” here, this means to me that you are not serious enough about the subject and you don’t consider it a crucial problem, so you can easily drop it as an existential issue. On the other hand if this is a fundamental problem for you which concerns the future of the country which you prophesize coming out victor of a 20 years struggle imposed to her by the “axis power”, then you should think about discussing it “profoundly”. One step in doing so is to consider the soundness of your arguments, particularly the impact of such statements as, I parapharse, “you should be able to do as individual what you please and you should be left alone by the community to do so.” This kind of sophistry goes against any principled approach to the problems of the rule of laws and limit and responsibility of the rulers and the ruled ones in Iran.

  312. BiBiJon says:

    James Canning says:
    September 9, 2013 at 1:29 pm

    “Russia urges Syria to put its CW into hands of third party. Iran should back this, as of course should the US.”

    James,

    I hope it has not escaped your notice that it is always for Russians and Iranians of this world to do positive, humanity-affirming deeds such as getting CW out of Syria, or nuclear free zone in the ME, or forever banning, under a major religion, the production, procurement, possession and the use of nuclear weapons.

    Now contrast this with what your country’s foreign policy is about. Do you see how coveting other nations resources, seeking domination over others, and equating UK’s hypothetical marginal security gain with actual total insecurity for others have caused your government to be involved multiple times in bloodshed and destruction.

    James, do you see that fyi is right when he says your country other than issuing inhumane threats of war, and indiscriminate economic punishment of entire population of Iran, has no other credible, believable plan/agenda for the region?

    Why is it that it always falls to Iran to do the right thing? Why is it that Iran invariably takes up that mantle. Why is it that the UK does not prioritize alleviating Palestinian dispossession?

    Look inside, and look deep, and think about a semi-decent legacy.

  313. Jay says:

    nico says:
    September 9, 2013 at 3:19 pm

    Nico,
    I presented a framework within which “wants” can be discussed and agreements can be made. I did not invent this framework, rather I simplified a broadly agreed framework into a quantifiable code of conduct so we can have a useful discussion about claims of “want”. James is unwilling to work within a quantifiable framework because it exposes the underpinnings of “want”: Exercise of “power” to gain “control”.

    There is no calculus to be had when actions and outcomes cannot be quantified. In other words, since James is unable to demonstrate a quantifiable framework beyond rhetorical nonsense, the claim that he has any calculus is a large leap of faith. Since James appears to be at least moderately educated and intelligent, I am led to conclude that his refusal to engage in a substantive discussion of verifiable “wants” is motivated by factors he is unwilling or unable to articulate.

  314. nico says:

    Joyeux says:
    September 9, 2013 at 5:20 pm

    “I am led to conclude that his refusal to engage in a substantive discussion of verifiable “wants” is motivated by factors he is unwilling or unable to articulate.”

    Ahahah.
    Nicely said.
    Could I translate that by Mr Canning being a blind and idiotic exceptionalist ?
    At least, I give him credit to be smart enough to know what he is speaking about.
    Apparently you doubt that.
    Well maybe you are right.

    But the end result is the same. Racist supremacism.

  315. James Canning says:

    BiBiJon,

    I would wholeheartedly welcome heavy British pressure on Israel to get out of the West Bank, end blockade of Gaza, arrange compensation for Palestinians dispossed by creation of Israel etc.

  316. Anonymous Lurker says:

    FYI – are you tripping? Pakistani women are in a much worse position that Iranian women, outside of the cities and feudal elite what rights do Pakistani women have?

    If you want to judge ‘progressive’ values of a society; Security, education, healthcare, sanctity of the family, or even clean water – then it seems that Iranian women are much better off that their Pakistani sisters.

    You want the individual freedom to be so ascendant that people should be free to do whatever they want, not seeing any wider impact to society — that really worked out for westernised countries didn’t it?

    Do you have something of a valid point? I would say yes, is it an existential issue? No!
    and F.Y.I. (getit!) hijab/islamic modesty is and has been increasing amongst Pakistani women for quite some time, and the Islamic Revolution was the biggest influence behind this trend. Figure that one out.

    This short clip attributed to Ali Shariati (sounds like Dr.Abbasi!) sprung to mind upon reading this discussion: http:// http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m1Mp2AWAX2E

  317. James Canning says:

    Jay,

    Be more specific. P5+1 insist Iran stop enriching to 20. This means UK “wants” Iran to stop enriching to 20.

    There are other items on P5+1 agenda.

  318. James Canning says:

    Nico,

    I welcome a specific example of what you think I am unable to “articulate”.

  319. James Canning says:

    BiBiJon,

    I think Britain should give strong backing to effort to create nuke-free zone and FORCE ISRAEL TO GET RID OF TIS NUKES.

  320. James Canning says:

    fyi,

    I think a fear of racial intermarriage (or mating outside marriage) was a considerable factor in “Jim Crow” laws etc in the American South.

  321. James Canning says:

    “Almost 60 per cent of children born in London last year were to mothers from outside the UK. . . ”
    –Richard Ford, writing in The Times (London) Aug 30

  322. James Canning says:

    Nico,

    What percentage of US prison population is in prison due to foolish “War on Drugs”?

  323. Anonymous Lurker says:

    Not sure if everyone else has seen the reports but the Indian Rupee is falling making oil imports more expensive in dollars. India pays for Iranian oil in rupees but apparently Iran not interested in taking any more payments in Rupee than existing levels.

    Some might call that karma. Iranian ministers might want to get a shopping list together

    India doesn’t seem to want a strategic relationship with Iran, which I find inexplicable.

  324. BiBiJon says:

    James Canning says:
    September 9, 2013 at 6:12 pm

    “I think Britain should give strong backing to effort to create nuke-free zone and FORCE ISRAEL TO GET RID OF TIS NUKES.”

    James, that miniscule speck then shall be the Anglo-Saxon legacy, if you insist.

    Alternatively,

    -Get Rowan Williams to Qom to discuss how he can echo ‘ban the bomb.’
    -Exit P5+1 and insist Iran be treated like anyone else
    -Make it legally binding on the British government not to interfere in the internal affairs of other nations, while always supporting the aspirations of the oppressed. Copy Iranian constitution if you like.
    -Quit selling arms to despots

    Promise you it will feel so good, you’ll know what else to do once you’ve done the above.

  325. Jay says:

    James Canning says:
    September 9, 2013 at 6:10 pm

    James,

    I tried to be specific by trying to establish a framework so we can discuss specifics – you diverted!

    But now, looking at your own writing, I think we are getting someplace. You wrote:

    “…UK “wants” Iran to stop enriching to 20.

    There are other items on P5+1 agenda.”

    In other words, you agree that UK wants control over an outcome (stop enrichment to 20), without an end point defined (There are other items….), and UK is willing to exercise “political” and “psychological” power (sanctions, sabotage, assassinations) to achieve her goals.

    If that is what you mean by “better relations”, I would have to say that is a real stretch for the meaning of “better relations” – “plain talk” people call it submission.

    Let’s leave it to an exercise of imagination to figure out the driving factors that yield mutual gains! They are not “wants”.

  326. James Canning says:

    Jay,

    The position of the P5+1 is a joint position by all six powers. Not just the UK.

  327. James Canning says:

    BiBiJon,

    You proposed I should urge UK backing of getting rid of Israeli nukes. I did so.

  328. fyi says:

    Anonymous Lurker says:
    September 9, 2013 at 6:09 pm

    Thank you for your reference to the late Dr. Ali Shariati.

    Then you must be familiar with the content of his short essay: “Father, Mother! We are guilty.”

    As for the Pakistani women and spread of hijab – it seems that even if true – the state is not sending its security organs to publicly humiliate them into some maliciously envious persons’ idea of hijab.

    Why do you care so much about controlling in such detail and in such force what Muslim women wear?

    Is it really about the Quran or is it about exercising power over women and their wombs?

    Have you solved to God’s satisfaction every other issue facing the Ummah and only this is left for you to do?

    And then why through violence?

  329. fyi says:

    All:

    The late Dr. Ali Shariati and his wife:

    http://historicalwallpapers.blogspot.com/2011/04/ali-shariati-1933-1977.html

    “She is a bad Muslim.” I can hear it already.

  330. BiBiJon says:

    James Canning says:
    September 9, 2013 at 7:53 pm

    “The position of the P5+1 is a joint position by all six powers. Not just the UK.”

    It really takes six powers to talk to one country? If you looked at this from another planet, you would conclude that the only power here must be Iran.

    anyways, there does seem to be some disagreement among the six as to who deserves to be called a “power.” http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/russia/10290243/Russia-mocks-Britain-the-little-island.html

  331. Rd. says:

    fyi says:

    “Iran has nothing to lose if she leaves the NPT during the US war against Syria – if that transpires.

    And if US is seen to prevail in Syria, in my opinion, Iran needs to build nuclear weapons – there is no loss for Iran any longer.”

    Given new developments, no support for war, proposal to remove CW from Syria, and war drum sails hitting a wall, does your requirement for the calculation (above) change?

  332. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Nico: Pepe Escobar’s piece has a couple of notable comments.

    One is his impression of just how important Obama is in the scheme of things:

    “Poor Barack is just a cipher, a functionary of empire, whose ”deciding” repertoire barely extends to what trademark smile to flash at the requisite photo-ops.”

    Agreed. As I’ve said, he’s nothing more than a pre-Emancipation South plantation foreman, taking orders from his white masters in AIPAC and the military-industrial complex. Those masters have names: the Crown and Pritzker families in Chicago.

    He also comments on how the “credibility” line doesn’t work with North Korea:

    “It eventually applies, on and off, to the Kim dynasty in North Korea, but with no consequences – because these are badass Asians who can actually respond to an US attack.”

    Agreed again. North Korea is an extremely tough CONVENTIONAL nut to crack, irregardless of any “dud” nukes. Syria and Iran – not so much.

    “Once again; helpless Barack is just a paperboy. The plutocrats in charge are getting extremely nervous. The system is melting – and they need to act fast.”

    Exactly as I’ve said.

    “They want to facilitate yet another Israeli attempt to capture southern Lebanon (it’s the water, stupid).”

    I agree Israel wants Lebanon’s water. But to do that, they have to take out Hizballah FIRST. At least Pepe’s coming around to the idea – slowly – that this Syria business has something to do with Israel and Lebanon. I’m not sure he’s figured out that this all leads finally to Iran.

    “It’s as if Dick Cheney had never left the building; paperboy Barack is Dick Cheney with a ”human” face.”

    Which is pretty much what I’ve said since Obama’s 2009 election campaign…Even Stephen Walt has been calling him “Bush Lite” – I was the first one to use that phrase back in 2009.

  333. Richard Steven Hack says:

    fyi: “Iran has nothing to lose if she leaves the NPT during the US war against Syria – if that transpires. And if US is seen to prevail in Syria, in my opinion, Iran needs to build nuclear weapons – there is no loss for Iran any longer.”

    I think I can speak for the Iranian government when I say it’s fortunate that no one in it pays attention to your prescriptions for Iran’s security.

    The “mad mullahs” are apparently considerably less “mad” than most of the Iranian ex-pats.

  334. Sineva says:

    James Canning says:
    September 9, 2013 at 2:01 pm
    It would not just be iran who would be damaged it would be the global economy,any attempted blockade would be met with a counter blockade,how long do you think the gulf states would last? nowhere near as long as iran could,you cannot remove over 20% of the worlds oil from the market and not expect catastrophic economic results,personally I can no more see the us attempting a blockade of the gulf than I could an invasion of iran,the international outcry would be huge but aside from that the chances of success would be minimal and the risks enormous,the us considered doing this with the dprk but quickly realised that it would be a dangerous and stupid thing to do,the risks of trying to do such a thing in the ME would be exponentially greater

  335. Jay says:

    James Canning says:
    September 9, 2013 at 7:53 pm

    James, you are not speaking to school children!!

    What is the position of P5+1? Please specify in detail.

    Your statement in the form presented given the context of discussion is deceptive. Let me remind you, you said:

    “…UK “wants” Iran to stop enriching to 20.

    There are other items on P5+1 agenda.”

    Is is your position that Russia and China also have other demands such as the eventual abandonment of Iran’s nuclear technology? Because that is the position of the West!

  336. Jay says:

    should be:

    Is it your position…

  337. Sineva says:

    James Canning says:
    September 9, 2013 at 2:09 pm
    Looking at israels past history of aggression and its nuclear arsenal and its obvious that the syrians felt differently and there was also saddams wmd arsenal to take into account as well.One could of course say the exact same thing about the wmd arsenals of the uk and france yet these countries saw them as not just a military necessity but a political one as well.Now personally I think the israelis would have to be fools to attempt to invade syria,but then I thought the same about lebanon in 2006 and look what happened,the israelis have a history of risk taking and unpredictability.Military planning is often about worst case scenarios and in those its better to have something and not need it than need it and not have it.I have no doubt that syrias wmd arsenal does have deterrent value,as to how much..well on that score I guess you would have to ask the israelis

  338. Sineva says:

    James Canning says:
    September 9, 2013 at 1:29 pm
    That is a silly idea,it sounds more like an attempt to have syria surrender its wmd arsenal,would it ever get it back?,into whos safe keeping would it be placed?,would it be kept in syria or removed to another country and whose country would that be?.No nation has ever relinquished its military crown jewels and I cant imagine syria being the first to do so.It reminds me of the americans wanting to “help” the pakistanis with the security of their nuclear arsenal,the pakistanis of course saw it rather differently

  339. Richard Steven Hack says:

    The Russia-Syria deal: What it means and what now?
    http://mondoweiss.net/2013/09/the-russia-syria-deal-what-it-means-and-what-now.html

    If it can be pulled off, it makes sense. Syria undoubtedly built its chemical weapons stockpile as a deterrent, however weak, against Israel’s nuclear arsenal. It was probably a waste of time as nukes trump chemicals, no matter how many tons you have.

    And given that Syria is going to be attacked BECAUSE it HAS chemical weapons, they might as well get rid of them.

    The operative word is “if”…

  340. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Let’s start with Obama’s conflicting reports.

    First he said “take it with a grain of salt”.

    Now he says IF Syria removes its chemical weapons, he will put the strike “on hold”.

    Of course, “on hold” doesn’t mean he won’t do it later.

    Obama: Strikes on hold if Assad turns over weapons
    http://www.politico.com/story/2013/09/obama-strikes-on-hold-if-assad-turns-over-weapons-96498.html#ixzz2eRExFrwa

    In any event, this very clearly puts Obama’s plans to attack Syria for the benefit of Israel in a quandary. The “chemical weapons” ploy was the best one Obama and Israel had for getting into a war with Syria. If Russia and Syria can make good on the promise to remove chemical weapons from Syria, that puts paid to that option.

    Or does it?

    The problems are multiple: It will take months to remove all chemical weapons from Syria. There is the issue of verification. Will the US take Russian assurances at face value if Israel says otherwise? What if there is another chemical attack by insurgents after the Syrian weapons are allegedly removed? Will the US blame the insurgents or claim Syria was lying about removing them? What about production facilities? Even if stockpiled chemical weapons are removed, who verifies that there is no new production? Will the US accept those assurances. again if Israel claims otherwise? How hard is to claim that production has been resumed? Who’s going to prove otherwise?

    Since the US is committed to attacking Syria, it seems to me that all this means is that the US will have to come up with yet another reason, ploy, or false flag operation in order to get its war started. The chemical weapons ploy was the best one, it seems to me, but it’s not the only possibility.

  341. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Kerry to Russia: Syria comments were not a proposal
    http://www.timesofisrael.com/kerry-to-russia-syria-comments-were-not-a-proposal/

    “Kerry said the US would take a look at any serious proposal, but that it wouldn’t stop White House efforts to obtain Congressional authorization for the use of force against the Bashar Assad regime.”

    In other words, regardless of whether Syria turns over its chemical weapons, Obama wants Congress to authorize a war anyway. Then all he needs to worry about is how to fake another reason to start it.

  342. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Stalling tactic? U.S. ‘skeptical’ over Russia proposal for Syria to surrender chemical weapons
    http://www.haaretz.com/misc/article-print-page/1.546075?trailingPath=2.169%2C2.216%2C2.295%2C

  343. masoud says:

    masoud says:
    September 9, 2013 at 11:51 pm

    So that was a lie. It was more of Charllie rose on Asad. I’m not sure if it’s worth watching.

  344. Karl.. says:

    James

    Ill take it that you think syrians/iranians are subhuman, while UK are humans and the police of the world, is that correct?

  345. Karl.. says:

    According to James UK could have WMD’s but Syria and Iran must end their programmes.

  346. M. Ali says:

    fyi talks in typical western liberal slogans with phrases which actually mean nothing. “intrinsic rights of a human being.” means nothing, because what exactly are instrinsic rights of a human being?

    Is it to walk around without a hijab? Okay, then what about without any attire at all? if a government is not allowed to enforce hijab, why should it be allowed to enforce any other form of attire? Does instrinstic rights of a human being stop at their breasts? They have the rights of a decent human being to show their hair but not their private genitals? Why exactly?

    The problem with today’s conversations are that they come from a western norm, and the refusal to acknowledge anything different from it. We are so lost, that to have a conversation with people such as these, one has to challenge the foundations of their thinking. Its like all the hoopla about “freedom”. As long as one lives in a society, then one is giving up freedoms. There is nothing wrong about this.

    I’m sometimes surprised that western mentality, no matter how much they shout about democracy, are usually least democratic. Democracy is not about human rights, or personal freedom, or same sex marriages, or hijabs. Democracy is about the majority choosing leaders that represent them. Meaning majority rules. So, if the majority hates the color red, and wants their leaders to band the color red completely in their country, then thats democracy, no matter how silly it may seem to the 1% or the 10% or even the 40%, as long as the majority desires a red-less society. But this is not how it is done in the west. In a lot of western countries, majority of the populance supports the death penalty, so why is it exactly not exercised? How is that democratic?

    Iran is one of the most democratic countries in the world because the laws represent the majority of the people’s desires.

  347. M. Ali says:

    The biggest obstacle that FYI refuses to handle is the reasonable followup from his way of thinking which is,

    “Leave it to women to gauge the Customs of their societies and to dress themselves accordingly.”

    The obvious response to this, which others have mentioned, is, okay, what if 1% of the population decides to walk around naked. This is the simplistic followup to someone that says, “My position is very clear; leave women alone to show judgement as to what to wear.”

    However, fyi dodges this question, with random distractions, such as talking about circumcision. Now, certain people could have answered, yes, its perfectly okay to walk around naked, and I’d respect them for their position. However, fyi obviously doesn’t favor nakedness with his statement, “So, are Iranian women harlots clamoring to walk around naked, like animals?”

    So nakedness, to fyi, is bad, because he says “like animals”. But showing the hair is fine. This shows that the problem is not with any personal freedom or instrintic rights or individual human beings, but what fyi feels as the norm.

    To fyi, norm is the western society, and to move away from that is somehow wrong. But not logically so, because as long as fyi agrees that it is not right to walk around naked, then we are giving the authorities the allowance to arrest naked people. But if we do that, then the conversation moves to, what should be allowed and what should not be allowed. Then its not a talk about personal freedoms or instrintic rights anymore, but simply, what attire is suitable in a society?

    Fyi’s talking in circles is the reason the western society is stagnant, for refusing to be honest with themselves. It reminds me of the controversy that rose from the Afghanistan war where one soldier had written on one the rockets, “Hijack this fags!”. The controversy in the western media among the liberals was why use fag in a negative manner, oh god, oh no, without anyone really seeming to be concerned that THE MISSLE IS GOING TO KILL PEOPLE.

  348. M. Ali says:

    As for my own position, I am a great believer in the rule of the majority. I’m a minority myself in Iran, and my positions on everything is probably different than the majority. If it was up to me, I’d create a Sodom on Earth and make myself King of it, and dwell in all its filth. But its not up to me, its up to the society, and by living in this society, I accept their wishes on how they want their society to be. And I like the IRI because I find them to be very close to the people’s desires, which I think is very rare in today’s world.

    I also have no problem with France outlawing the hijab. Its their society, if the majority of the French don’t like the hijab, then ban it. Let hijab wearers either influence the society to change the majority’s views, or leave and find a society that better meets their needs.

    “Was not Allah’s earth spacious that ye could have migrated therein?”

  349. Rehmat says:

    On September 3, 2013, Yaron London in an Op-Ed at Israel’s top daily YNet, titled ‘Wink on the way to a bomb’ says that Washington’s hesitation to bomb Syria “tells Israel its assurances regarding Iranian threat cannot be counted on”.

    London after lying about Syrian chemical threats and Iranian pusuit for a nuclear bomb, says what worries Netanyahu and his advisers the most is that in the future, Washington might come to the conclusion that if the US can live with a nuclear Pakistan and North Kores, why not a nuclear Iran. Then he admits that a nuclear Iran doesn’t pose an ‘existential threat’ to Israel but it would enbolden the regional Islamist groups (Hamas, Islamic Jihad, Hizbullah, etc.) fighting Israel.

    “They (Netanyahu & Co.) are certain that an Iranian bomb is existential threat, not because Iran will rush to fire missiles with nuclear warheads at us, but because an Iran equipped with doomsday weapons will further encourage elements that would provoke us without the fear of a massive response,” said London.

    London was echoing Maj. Gen. Amir Eshel’s fears. Eshel said last year that a nuclear Iran would make it very difficult for Israel to defeat Hamas or Hizbullah. “If we are forced to do things in Gaza or in Lebanon – under the Iranian nuclear umbrella it might be different,” said Amir Eshel.

    It seems Netanyahu’s bad dream has started coming true. On Monday, during a meeting with Syrian FM Walid al-Moallem in Moscow, Russian FM Sergei Lavrov called on Damascus to put its chemical weapons under international control. However, he made no such suggestion to Washington or Tel Aviv which are the real culprit in using chemical weapons against civilians – in Palestine, Lebanon, Iraq, Afghanistan, Vietnam, Korea, to name a few.

    On September 9, 2013, US secretary of state John Kerry said he is ready to forgive president Assad if he handover all existing chemical weapons under the control of international community. He also stated that military intervention is not enough to solve the Syrian problem. He, too, avoided naming the Zionist regime which is the real problem behind the Syrian problem.

    On September 9, 2013, Alaeddin Boroujerdi, Chairman of Majlis’ National Security and Foreign Policy Commission dismissed the Zionist and western media allegations that Tehran and Moscow have devised a plan to bring a regime change in Damascus peacefully including the tranfer of country’s chemical weapons to another country.

    http://rehmat1.com/2013/09/10/israel-cant-trust-obama-on-iran/

  350. Rd. says:

    Richard Steven Hack says:

    “Let’s start with Obama’s conflicting reports.”

    In recent years, would it be fair to say the position of the commander in chief has become more of a Marionette of a commander in chief? Who is being groomed and promoted by a small minority of exceptionally well to do for election and later ‘heavily’ influenced by them.

    Now, you have to wonder, why obama chose to go to congress? He certainly had the means to start the war, no question. He would have had the congressional backing, very little opposition there. He would have had the corporate media’s backing. And finally, damn the public. The precedents are all there.

    However, for whatever reasons, the brits dropped the ball. Obama got cold feet and didn’t want to be holding the ball in his name,, so he did a CYA with congress. Now I find it very ironic, that;
    1- in his interview on monday obama said he had talked to Putin about Syria surrendering its CW.
    2- Charlie Rose just happen to be in Damasus in a very short order to interview Pres Assad.
    3- Mr Assad just happen to consider surrendering his CW to avoid war.
    4- Kerry just happen to make a gaff. And so on …

    And some how all falls into place? Right. Is it possible that A) Obama, despite all his O bomber wanna be, and as attorney, thought to use a bit of room to wiggle his way out for various reasons.,., and ‘may be’ just like 2007 and 2012 they got the old NAH when Feltman got a cold feeling when he was assured ‘we will defend ourselves’. So what ever the case may be, it highlights one point, US ability to dictate events is continually shrinking, despite the military option. And you can put that option on table as often as you like, just cut the table’s leg and you don’t have a table, let alone the option.

  351. Dan Cooper says:

    Assad has much higher public support in Syria than obama has in the US, or cameron has in the UK, or hollande has in France, or merkel has in Germany, or netanyahu has in Israel.

    Assad did not start the war. The Syrian government was attacked by outside forces sent in by Washington and Israel.

    If Syria is a “threat to world security,” like Iraq was a “threat to world security,” like Iran is alleged to be a “threat to world security,” what kind of superpower is the United States? How low does the IQ have to be, how mentally impaired does the public have to be to fall for these absurd hysterical allegations?

    Isn’t it a threat to international security when a superpower can, acting on a whim, demonize a leader and a country and unleash mass destruction, as the US has done seven times in the past twelve years,? There are millions of innocent but demonized victims of the “indispensable, exceptional USA,” the “light unto the world.”

    Forget about the US media, which is nothing but a propaganda ministry for the Israel Lobby. What the members of Congress and what the American people need to ask obama is why does the White House only represent the Israel Lobby?

    No one supports an attack on Syria but the Israel Lobby.

    http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article36176.htm

  352. fyi says:

    Rd. says:

    September 9, 2013 at 9:19 pm

    No.

    It will change when IAEA closes the Iran file; removes the pretext for Axis Powers to go to war with Iran at the first opportunity.

    You seem to have forgotten the wars in Iraq, Libya, and now Syria and the pretexts for them.

    In the meantime, their leaders were lulled into sleep.

    Now pay attention here:

    Once US initiates her war against Syria and gets into another unwinable war, Iran should declare that she would elave NPT unless all sanctions against her are dropped.

    US will not be fighting in 3 fronts – Syria, Iran, Afghanistan.

    But you must understand that Axis Powers will attack Iran when the opportunity arises.

    There is no doubt in my mind.

  353. M. Ali says:

    The giving up of CW seems like a good trap for Assad and Syria. If Russia agrees to this, then they are idiots. So, what will happen is, Assad will not give up its CW and make Syria going against the wishes of its allies such as Russia & China, and will strengthen USA’s “world community”.

    Or Assad agrees to the demands, gives them up, a few months down the line, USA claims they didn’t give ALL their CW’s (which will be an easier sell, because now it will make Assad like a lying douche who cant be trusted, even when Obama gave him a chance), and then engage military with Assad, which would be easier, because then Assad would be in the same spot as now sans their dangerous weapons.

    Smart of USA, with Russia & China really dicking it up, once again.

  354. M. Ali says:

    “It is unlikely that we would have arrived at that point without a credible military threat,” Obama told CNN.

    There is something drastically wrong with the mentality of America. They have believed their own bullshit and they have a very dangerous way of looking at the world.

  355. Dan Cooper says:

    The vast majority of Americas are concerned with domestic economic issues, such as unemployment, the steep decline in living standards, growing inequalities, the growing concentration of wealth (the ‘Wall Street 1% versus the 99%’ issue of the ‘Occupy Movement’), the grotesque and inescapable debt among students and graduates, the savage cuts in social programs (education, health, housing and infrastructure) in the face of soaring military expenditures and stratospheric government subsidies to bailout the banks and speculators.

    In other words, the values, attitudes and interests of the vast majority of Americans diverge sharply from those of the Washington establishment, the mass media and the power brokers who penetrate and surround the political elite.

    Among the scant 11% of Americans who ‘support’ US military intervention in Syria , the ‘pro-Israel crowd and its acolytes’ are overwhelmingly represented.

    The evidence is clear: They are the most actively engaged in propagandizing and pushing for war with Syria at the national and local levels throughout the country.
    They are the ever-present bullying pundits’ and news commentators lying about the Syrian government’s exclusive use of chemical ‘weapons of mass destruction’ in a horrific civil war riddled by foreign mercenaries.

    They and other mass media pimps, pundits and publishers have totally buried a major the Associated Press report from Syria which quotes members of the armed Syrian opposition who admit they had ‘accidentally released stores of chemical weapons, supplied by Saudi Arabia’ (their sponsor)..

    Israel ’s semi-official web site,Ynet.com, published a lead article by Yitzhak Benhorin, entitled “AIPAC to Lobby Congress for Syrian Strike”.

    The article reveals the leading role of the Israeli-directed Zionist war effort: “After Israel ’s ambassador to Washington ,Michael Oren and AIPAC noted that military action would send a message to Assad’s supporters …some 250 Jewish leaders and AIPAC activists ..intend to storm the halls on Capital Hill beginning next week (September 9-13)to persuade(sic)lawmakers that Congress must adopt the resolution authorizing US strikes against Syria”(9/6/13). To counter Pope Francis’ plea to the world for peace and opposition to Obama’s threats to bomb Syria before 100,000 people of faith in front of St .Peter’s Basilica, the Cleveland Jewish News(9/6/13) reported that, “leading rabbis covering the religious and political spectrum (sic)urged lawmakers in Congress to support President Obama’s plans to strike Syria..”

    Everyday since Obama called for a Congressional vote, the Daily Alert , publication of the 52 Presidents of the Leading American Jewish Organizations, has published only articles and statements promoting war and urged its supporters to round up Congressional votes for Obama and counter and undermine the pro-peace sentiments of the majority of Americans.

    http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article36178.htm

  356. BiBiJon says:

    M. Ali says:
    September 10, 2013 at 9:39 am

    Assad has learned how to win the ‘narrative’ without WMD. He has also learned through bitter experience that in the direst circumstances he could not use WMD, and that his alleged possession (won’t confirm/deny) of WMD ends up being used by the ‘rebels’ as an excuse for gassing the Syrian army.

    WMD in the hands of a state is worse than useless.

    The west playing games around has he / hasn’t he really given up is to be expected, as is Russia and Iran continued political support much the same as today.

    Russia was waiting for Obama to desperately need a rope to climb out the hole before suggesting Syria give up its CW. I see astute timing. The other shoe will drop with Iran being portrayed as a positive influence, already done in NPR interview by Samantha Power, and by Obama himself.

    Power: “We’ve employed the force of the stigma associated with this norm and messaged directly to the Syrian regime, gotten the Russians to message direct to the Syrian regime. I believe Iran has messaged directly about how important it is not use chemical weapons.”

    http://www.npr.org/2013/09/09/220586231/u-s-ambassador-susan-rice-makes-case-for-strikes-on-syria

    Obama: “You know, one reason that this may have a chance of success is that even Syria’s allies like Iran detest chemical weapons. Iran, you know, unfortunately was the target of chemical weapons at the hands of Saddam Hussein back at the Iraq-Iran War.

    And so we may be able to arrive at a consensus in which it doesn’t solve the underlying problems of a civil war in Syria, but it does solve the problem that I’m trying to focus on right now, which is making sure that you don’t have over 400 children gassed indiscriminately by these chemical weapons.”

    transcripts . cnn . com/TRANSCRIPTS/1309/09/sitroom.02.html

    The administration is allowing an opening which will lead to easing of confrontation with Iran. You will see further confirmation of this when Rohani comes to town. I have no doubt.

  357. masoud says:

    M. Ali says:
    September 10, 2013 at 9:39 am

    That’s precisely correct.

    It’s hard to tell who’s dicking this up more, Russia with this idiotic scheme, or Iran with it’s ambiguous public messaging.
    On the bright side though, you can friend the cabinet ministers on Facebook! Cool!
    That’s what I call professional crisis management.

  358. Rd. says:

    fyi says:

    “But you must understand that Axis Powers will attack Iran when the opportunity arises.
    There is no doubt in my mind.”

    No question that the country has been under attack all along. However, as far as open military warfare, there seems to be a stumbling block all along, has this not been the case, for more than 30 years?

    going back to the Carter doctrine, Iran had to be the most significant of the 4 pillars of US influence in the ME (Iran, Egypt, Turkey, SA). Yet, after the island of stability debacle, they didn’t confront Iran directly and used sadam. That failed. The Soviet union fell apart. Then they decide on neutralizing sadam figuring he was more of a problem? Without the soviets, they had their hands open, yet, they went after Yugoslavia and not Iran. Then it was back to Iraq. Then 911, then Afghanistan war, then Iraq. It seems, every step of the way, there were stumbling blocks, or US for whatever reasons, avoided the direct confrontation?? Why?

    I fully understand their intent as well as their diseased mad dog mind set. But, why the hesitation (for direct confrontation) for more than 30 years? I guess, it all goes back to your statement above; when the opportunity arises?

  359. fyi says:

    M. Ali says:

    September 10, 2013 at 4:44 am

    …great believer in majority…”

    That is just rubbish.

    Can majority dictate to minority whom to marry? What to study? Where to live? How to live?

    Can majority tell others what to believe?

    Can majority, legalize prostitution?

    I have 2 words for youe:

    «حقوق ذاتی»

    کرامت انسانی

    And while you are digesting these novel ideas, read this as well:

    http://www.momtaznews.com/%d8%a8%d9%87%d8%a7%d8%b1%db%8c%d9%87-%d9%85%d9%87%d8%af%db%8c-%d8%a7%d8%ae%d9%88%d8%a7%d9%86-%d8%ab%d8%a7%d9%84%d8%ab-%d8%a2%d9%81%d8%a7%d9%82-%d9%be%d8%b1-%d8%a7%d8%b2-%d9%be%db%8c%da%a9-%d9%88/

  360. fyi says:

    Rd. says:

    September 10, 2013 at 10:36 am

    I had not thought about the questions that you have raised; why not attacking Iran after the collapse of the collapse of the Soviet Union.

    May be the Axis Powers planners had an agenda which was based on the distance from the geographical centre of the Axis Powers.

    So, they first went after Yugoslavia.

    But I do not know – I speculate that they thought their Dual Containment strategy against both Iran and Iraq would cause regime change in both countries.

    I do not know.

    Good question.

  361. Ataune says:

    @BibiJon

    I do agree with you that there are possibilities of slight political opening between the two countries. A strategic shift is needed though for this to scratch more than the surface.

    Since at least mid-1970s, when she realized that Soviet power is in decline, American strategy has been to be directly and militarily present in the Persian Gulf. Leaving temporarily aside the role of the eternal ally in the region, we can say that this strategy ran in conjunction with shifting from Iran as the number one partner/tool to Saudi Arabia. The events in the region during this last decade, as the Leveretts correctly point to, are increasingly displaying the impasse of this strategy. The region’s balance of power has changed. US is not omnipotent as she was 15 or so years ago, and, despite the ups and downs of recent years, the political positions of Iran, thanks mostly to her wise foreign policy, has sustained momentum and ascendency.

    The real opening and thaw will come if and when the US makes the big strategic turn in the region, which shouldn’t be conceived necessarily as a U turn.

  362. Rd. says:

    Ataune says:

    “Since at least mid-1970s, when she realized that Soviet power is in decline, American strategy has been to be directly and militarily present in the Persian Gulf.”

    Would it fair to say, for any real change, the Carter doctrine has to be abandoned? It seems to me, the original intent was meant to deter the Soviets. However, since the Soviet fall, the program did not adjust. And US failed to understand, by military protection of “anyone taking over” Persian Gulf, they simply forgot about the original inhabitants of the region. Whom had no reason to take over, except the fact that, they were already there and did not wish to have an outsider dictate over Persian Gulf. Would it seem reasonable to consider for any real change, the issue of SA, petro dollars, and energy corridor has to be resolved. US existence now depends on it.

  363. Rd. says:

    fyi,

    I know you had the discussion with BIB and others. For my own perspective, I’d appreciate your thoughts on the following, and anyone else as well. Thank you.

    You had at one point commented on the destruction of Neishapour in the early 1200 by the Mongol invasion. I believe some 1.5M(??) souls were killed. Also, I understand Neishapour to have been one of the top 10 largest city(?) of the time. Obviously a significant center for the government of the time.

    In contrast, Hiroshima of 1945 had some 320k population with close to half of them lost in a short time (days). Most of the city destroyed. I understand there are many significant variables comparing the two events. For a historical perspective, if one were to use the Neishapour tragedy, what is to learn as far as government planning is concerned?

  364. Ataune says:

    fyi said:

    “Can majority dictate to minority whom to marry? What to study? Where to live? How to live?”

    Yes. And this is exactly how it’s hapenning in every political community trying to live under the rule of law and due process. Laws are not here to make you absolutely free and give individuals the absolute right to chose the way they judge themselves be the best to live in public, they are here to bound your liberty and to allow the community to survive TOGETHER, to assure the members safety and security. A good poiltical contract will in addition encompass legal ways to improve the law of the land if necessary and will provide enough freedom for the individuals to allow the society as a whole be a dynamic one. The current “social contract” in Iran might need improvment but it has all the necessary ingredients for self-reform.

  365. fyi says:

    Rd. says:

    September 10, 2013 at 11:06 am

    The salient characteristic of each incident is that mass muder of civilians is the only reliable path to victory.

  366. fyi says:

    Ataune says:

    September 10, 2013 at 11:08 am

    I do not subscribe to the theory of absolute freedom of the individual; quite often I have to rush to the toilet and my freedom of action (volition) is clearly very very restricted.

    The Western Political Theory has been based – implicitly – on the Revelations.

    Revelations of Jesus supplied the basis for the limits on the rule of the majority.

    As of late, they Western people have removed that basis – thinking that they do not need it.

    But once the Revelations is removed all that is possible is the tyranny of majority; which is where they are going.

    Together with the Tyranny of Majority, you are witnessing the dissolution of Moral Order since there is not foundations any longer for the existence of such moral order.

    And I also do not believe in the Theory of Social Contract – I think it has no foundations in human historical experience.

    All of these various political theories have explicit or implicit teleological aims – often unstated – in my opinion.

    They are all attempts at creation of Utopia: Socialist, Rationalist, Islamic, Shia, Sunni, Capitalist, etc.

    All are trying to create, without stating it, Paradise-on-Earth.

    But all such programs have failed and will fail; Men are in Exile from Paradise and only God could alter that.

    But, since Man is in the State of Rebellion against God, the Paradise-on-Earth project – in its secular or religious guises – will be attempted over and over again and millions will suffer and die because of that.

    Howver, in my opinion, it does not have to be this way if one accepts the limits that the Revelations impose on the contours of human polities.

    What I have in mind is the obverse of what in US is often called “Murphy’s Law”; “There is a real limit on how far things can be improved; including human polities.”

    But if you accept that, then you are discarding the godess of Progress; and I do not believe that Western people are prepared for that.

  367. BiBiJon says:

    Ataune says:
    September 10, 2013 at 10:50 am

    while at the current nadir of US-Iran relations, I would welcome even a mere scratch of the surface if it meant containing the Takfiri/zionist vermin a little, I think the prospects for a “big strategic turn” are fairly good.

    I’m hoping that AIPAC’s failure to deliver the House, and KSA’s failure to deliver the Arab league are but two points on the downward trajectory of the neocon narrative which will soon dip below the rising tide of all other sensible alternative worldviews. Don’t get me wrong. The adherents of sensible alternative worldviews are very astute and have scored successes when it mattered.

    The 2007 NIE, and the sudden declassification of documents proving US complicity in Saddam’s CW are 2 examples of pulling the rug from under the feet of the war party moments before the ‘bombs away’ order was issued in 2007 and 2013.

    Once the surface is scratched the revealed possibilities will be irresistible for an empire in dire need of a winning strategy. At that time, the Takfiri/Zionist project will hold no appeal whatsoever and will recede faster and faster as a distant nightmarish history.

  368. Ataune says:

    @Rd

    I don’t think “Carter Doctrine” was the begining or even the culmination of the American military presence in the Persian Gulf, therefore it’s not its abandonment that will signal any change of the strategy. The public anouncement of what became known as “Carter doctrine” came right after the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan and was meant to show the US resolve in defending what she perceived as her vital interests since the time that British left the area for good (1974 if my memory is correct.) On the other hand the shift to the direct military presence in the region was in preparation both intellectualy and logistically since early 70s. It has now been established that Saudis were quite instrumental in lobying for this change since it would have (and did) benefited them in gradually replacing Iran as the favorite of the “harem”. So the real shift in strategic position will be detected when we see signs affecting the size of the US military presence in the region.

  369. Ataune says:

    @fyi

    “I do not subscribe to the theory of absolute freedom of the individual; quite often I have to rush to the toilet and my freedom of action (volition) is clearly very restricted.”

    I am glad to read this. Although I don’t think we still agree on. Your quite metaphorical analogy bring me to conclude that the source of the restriction you are applying to the individual freedom is coming from a person’s own capacity, needs and shortcomings and not necessarily imposed to him by the community’s customs, morality and laws. This is the crux of the matter.

    As you pointed out further down in your reply, it is the dissolution of the moral order [with the removal of the Revelations] that is at the source (one of the source I would say) of the decline in the Western societies. But you fail to link this dissolution to the tremendous energy it’s absorbing from the unlimited individual freedom and unrestricted satisfaction of individual desires “marketing concept”. The customs, the laws and moral order all have in common that their meaning is rooted in the in/through the community, not in the individual.

    Although you yourself are offering a call for the acceptance of the Revelations (a community based belief) as the source of a better living on this earth, you refuse to accept that it is the community which is essentially defining the norms and limitation for your freedom.

  370. fyi says:

    Ataune says:

    September 10, 2013 at 1:00 pm

    The Community is not a god nor God.

    It cannot legitimately arrogate to itself the perogatives of God; viz. it cannot persume to judge who is a good, bad, ugly, indifferent Believer.

    The Community has no justification whatsoever to abrogate the inherent dignity of human beings.

    What the Western people are instructive but not determinate to others – try to do a better job thatgn Western people.

  371. James Canning says:

    Report in Financial Times today stresses that John Kerry suggested that an agreement by Syria to put CW into hands of third party would make US attack unnecessary. Segei Lavrov then immediately proposed it.

  372. James Canning says:

    Ataune,

    The US had a tiny military presence in the Gulf prior to Saddam Hussein’s invasion of Kuwait in 1990.

  373. James Canning says:

    fyi & Rd.,

    Bill Clinton liked the idea of restoring normal relations with Iran. Remember the proposed Conoco oil deal. Israel lobby blocked it.

  374. fyi says:

    James Canning says:

    September 10, 2013 at 1:48 pm

    He liked the idea of restoring diplomatic relations with Iran after he had effected his regime change agenda.

    He was the man who began his presidency with an aggressive non-proliferation stand against North Korea; a stand that was going to result in a war on the Korean Penninsula.

    What prevented the war was the fact North Korean had moved their forces south in the aftermath of the First Iraq War (Desert Storm) and had taken Seoul hostage.

    Next, they moved on to reduce their deterence costs by acquiring nuclear arms -and to simultaneously – increase the potency of their deterrence.

    This had nothing to do with Israel Lobby and had everything to do with US Strategic posture.

    Mr. Bush I, Mr. Clinton, Mr. Bush II, and now Mr. Obama – through their “Red Lines” and actions have carried out the US Strategic agenda for more than 20 years.

    I think we can all agree that the events of the last 20 days have un-masked the “Peace President”.

    Anyone who think that Iran is safe from US & EU attacks is ignoring the evidence in front of their eyes.

  375. Ataune says:

    @caning

    I was talking about the shift in the US strategy in the Persian Gulf not about her military build-up. There must have been an objective for the optimum presence implemented gradually during the years after UK left the Persian Gulf for good. On the road to her maximum commitment objectives (truly a wrongheaded policy by itself) US jumped on opportunities given to her by friends and foes in the region to run the build-up in size and the legal farmework for her presence.

    And you have been mis-lead, Bill clinton was not in the business of restoring normal realtions with Iran. With Christopher and Indyk at the helm, he constantly pushed for isolation of the political leadership (Rafsanjani, the president at the time, was presenting himself the head of a technocrat cabinet only interested in rebuilding the country) and sanctions od Iran’s economy.

  376. nico says:

    http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/afp/130910/syria-signs-big-contracts-iran

    “A government source told AFP “the contracts signed in the past week are aimed at flooding the Syrian markets with all kinds of goods so people don’t suffer from shortages”.

    Iran opened two credit lines for Syria worth $4 billion in May, and another in July for $3.6 billion.”

    It can be assumed Iran financial/material support for Syria is at least 10 billions so far this year alone.

  377. James Canning says:

    Ataune,

    The US did not fill the “vacuum” in the Gulf after British forces left. In fact, it was a bit embarrassing how little the US had available, in the crisis during days before Iraqi invasion in 1990.

    You give too little weight to interests in American that wanted normal relations with Iran. Israel lobby exerted itself to block this.

    I think G H W Bush would have restored normal relations with Iran, if he had not lost the 1992 election.

  378. James Canning says:

    fyi,

    Obama has said the US will not attack Syria if Syria puts its CW in hands of a third party. Not a good idea?

  379. James Canning says:

    fyi,

    North Korea has no need whatever for nukes.

    South Korea would be less than enthusiastic about taking over NK if NK gov’t left the country.

  380. James Canning says:

    masoud,

    You think Syria should keep its CW? Ignore the Russians?

  381. James Canning says:

    Dan Cooper,

    Yes, what a spectacle! Aipac, ADL, other Jewish groups, pushing for another US war in the Middle East.

  382. James Canning says:

    fyi,

    Obama would likely seek to avoid hostilities if possible, by imposing a blockade (of Iranian oil exports by sea). If no deal is made between Iran and P5+1, Iran keeps stockpiling, etc etc.

  383. James Canning says:

    M. Ali,

    Russia was acting in support of Syria, when it proposed transfer of Syrian CW to third party.

  384. fyi says:

    James Canning says:

    September 10, 2013 at 2:14 pm

    Mr. Obama is not stupdily obstinate; he took the life-line that the Russian threw at him.

    But he remains unmasked; the wars against Syria and Iran have been on US agenda – regardless of the “Peace President”.

  385. fyi says:

    James Canning says:

    September 10, 2013 at 2:25 pm

    Will not happen during his presidency.

    The next US president will have to carry out that threat.

  386. James Canning says:

    Dan Cooper,

    I think Saudi Arabia and Qatar were primary outside parties that pushed civil war in Syria.

    After they failed to talk Assad into putting more distance between his country and Iran. Due to concerns Iran might bring war to the Gulf by failing to make a deal with P5+1.

  387. fyi says:

    James Canning says:

    September 10, 2013 at 2:15 pm

    Not at all.

    By arming herself with nuclear weapons and taking Seoul and Pusan hostage (to be followed by Tokyop, Yokoham etc.), she can lower her defense expenditures.

    In essence, North Korea has elected to wage a nuclear war resulting in Mutually Assured Destruction of the Korean Penninsula and parts of Japan.

  388. James Canning says:

    fyi,

    I think we have to hope Iran can make a deal of some sort with P5+1.

  389. nico says:

    http://www.tehrantimes.com/economy-and-business/110667-irans-economy-shrank-54-in-past-calendar-year-central-bank

    “The Central Bank of Iran has confirmed that the national economy contracted by 5.4 percent in the past Iranian calendar year, which ended on March 20, Iranian Finance and Economic Affairs Minister Ali Tayyebnia stated. According to Iran’s statistical center, the country’s economy contracted by 5.4 percent in the past Iranian calendar year, ISNA quoted Iranian president’s deputy for planning Mohammad-Baqer Nobakht as saying.”

    BIG BUT…

    “The Central Bank of Iran has recently reported that the country’s gross domestic product (GDP) growth rate (excluding oil sector) was 3.2 percent in the Iranian calendar year 1390, which ended in March 2012.”

    Conclusion : the US unilateral sanctions against Iran are a dramatic failure…

  390. James Canning says:

    fyi,

    North Korea faces zero risk of attack, provided it does not dw something really stupid.

    China wants NK to get rid of its nukes.

  391. fyi says:

    James Canning says:

    September 10, 2013 at 2:31 pm

    I do not think you have grasped the stratgeic changes that the war in Syria has caused.

    Nor I think you have understood the significance of the events of the past 20 days.

    P5+1 is kaput – that forum no longer represents any substance; it is like the Six-Party Talks on the Korean Penninsula.

    Mr. Obama and US have been unmasked; there is no deal within P5+1 that would or could preclude an Axis Powers attack against Iran.

  392. fyi says:

    James Canning says:

    September 10, 2013 at 2:33 pm

    “North Korea faces zero risk of attack”…

    Hmm…

    Axis Powers destroyed Yugoslavia – a former un-official Cold War allie against USSR.

    They destroyed B’athist Iraq.

    They destroyed Qaddafi’s Libya.

    They are aiming to carry out the same project in Syria.

  393. nico says:

    James Canning says:
    September 10, 2013 at 2:33 pm

    “North Korea faces zero risk of attack, provided it does not dw something really stupid.China wants NK to get rid of its nukes.”

    Usual Canning BS.
    That is political charade and bullying.

    The only US interest here is to do NOT find a solution to make everybody believe the US are the indispensable nation.
    And to allow the US ingerence and continual military presence in the region.

    That is typical Anglo CONSPIRACY as proven and implemented evreywhere in the world for centuries.
    Divide and rule.

    You still believe your own bullshit Mr Canning, isn’t it ?

    The Anglo government policies are satanic. Period.

  394. James Canning says:

    Gideon Rachman, writing in Financial Times online today: “Obama should grab Lavrov’s offer”. Good advice.

  395. James Canning says:

    Nico,

    NK faces ZERO threat of attack by US or other countries (barring idiotic action by NK gov’t).

    You apparently endorse keeping the bulk of the population of NK in poverty?

  396. James Canning says:

    fyi,

    Yugoslavia came apart at the seams. This could have been prevented by what, in your view?

    Idiotic US invasion of Iraq was result of a conspiracy to deceive the American people about existence of a non-existent threat.

    I think western military intervention in Libya was a very big mistake. But stupidity on the part of Gaddafi did a great deal to cause it to happen.

  397. nico says:

    James Canning says:
    September 10, 2013 at 2:47 pm

    What are the Yankees still doing in SK and Japan and Germany ?

    Does Germany face a threat ?

    Well it is clear Anglo imperialism.

    SATANIC PROJECT OF WORLD DOMINATION.

  398. James Canning says:

    fyi,

    Yes, some of the fanatical “pro-Israel” elements in the US that conspired to deceive the American people to set up the illegal and idiotic invasion of Iraq, are indeed trying to bring about foolish US military intervention in Syria. No doubt about it.

  399. James Canning says:

    fyi,

    I think you are simply badly mistaken if you think P5+1 are “kaput” and Iran need make no deal. Badly mistaken.

  400. Karl.. says:

    James

    Is there “fanatical pro-israel” elements in the UK too since cameron, hague and a great part of the gov. want to attack Syria James?

  401. Jay says:

    This is what James says on September 10, 2013 at 2:25 pm
    ____
    “fyi,
    Obama would likely seek to avoid hostilities if possible, by imposing a blockade (of Iranian oil exports by sea). If no deal is made between Iran and P5+1, Iran keeps stockpiling, etc etc.”

    “Avoid hostilities” by “imposing a blockade”?! I am sorry for bringing up this tiny little nuance, but.. imposing a blockade is a hostile act!!

    Some “plain talk” folks are just simply dangerous!

  402. BiBiJon says:

    Why bother loosen the noose, if you mean to throttle?
    =================================================

    http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/09/10/usa-iran-sanctions-idUSL2N0H610X20130910

    (Reuters) – The United States relaxed sanctions on Iran on Tuesday to make it easier for U.S. humanitarian groups to work there and sports exchanges to occur between Americans and Iranians, a possible goodwill gesture after Iran elected a new moderate president.

    The move announced by the U.S. Treasury Department means non-profit groups focused on disaster relief, wildlife conservation, human rights and similar programs will no longer have to apply for special permission to enter Iran and conduct business there.

    Answer
    ——

    According to Jay, and despite fyi’s assertions, ‘war’ is a tool and the US has not degenerated so far as not understand this.

  403. BiBiJon says:

    Taking bets
    ==========

    Susan Rice’s tenure will be the shortest on record

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-24025332

  404. James Canning says:

    Jay,

    Perhaps you recall that John F. Kennedy chose to “avoid hostilies” with Cuba and the Soviet Union, in October 1962. By imposing a blockade on Cuba. Most of Kennedy’s military advisers wanted him to launch an attack on Cuba.

  405. James Canning says:

    “avoid hostilities” (with Cuba and USSR)

  406. James Canning says:

    Karl..,

    I understand David Cameron et al have been influenced more by the Saudis and other Gulf Arabs, in taking such a hostile posutre toward Syria.

    Israel lobby much weaker in UK, than in US.

  407. BiBiJon says:

    DNI/DNR (don’t intubate or resuscitate)
    =======================================

    James, commit an act of war to avoid war?

    Thank you for reminding me to sign the DNR/DNI consent form in case I get into a vegetative state.

  408. James Canning says:

    Dennis Ross is now arguing Rouhani will be “weakened” if Obama fails to attack Syria. Preposterous rubbish.

  409. James Canning says:

    BiBiJon,

    Yes, in a sense. JFK “committed an act of war to avoid war”, with Soviet Union. Thank goodness.

    Do you remember the Cuban Missile Crisis?

  410. fyi says:

    James Canning says:

    September 10, 2013 at 3:41 pm

    The late John F. Kennedy needlessly brought the world to the edge of World War III; we are all alive today because of the sanity of one man: the late Nikita Khruschev.

    Other than that, this is a great example.

  411. BiBiJon says:

    It would be funny if it wasn’t really funny
    ====================================

    Here’s Kerry in the middle of testifying why congress must approve force, he gets handed a note that presidents of Russia, China France, and UK will be meeting with Obama to do a peace deal vis-a-vis Syria.

    http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2013/09/10/military-threat-spurred-syria-diplomacy/2792249/

    Kerry was saying military threat spurred Syria to current point and the threat should be maintained.

    Truth is that a remarkably ill-conceived, “unbelievably small” military threat was amateurishly rolled out by Susan Rice and resulted in the ground cratering under the Administration’s feet so gapingly that the lifeline Putin extended was grabbed by a scrambling-for-his-political-life Obama before his cabinet members could practice whistling the new tune.

  412. Jay says:

    James,

    your implied contention that Kennedy’s choice for the lesser of two aggressive actions (blockade instead of war) is pleasantly characteristic of your dissonant reasoning.

    In addition to what fyi already alluded to – putting the world in danger of annihilation – Kennedy’s actions were an exercise of power to achieve control over outcomes and resources. This action was not meant to advantage the people of Cuba, or USSR, or America for that matter.

    You exhibit a certain detachment from consequences of policies and actions you advocate or approve of. You should be reminded that these consequences you detach yourself from are not imposed on abstract entities, they impact people that are perhaps like you.

  413. Karl.. says:

    On Kerry and Syria

    US threat Syria and succeeds.. Thats quite bad because now US will likely use threats against Iran for the same reasons..

  414. Irshad says:

    fyi says:
    September 10, 2013 at 2:37 pm

    What do you think, are the strategic changes that the war in Syria has caused, especially with whats happened over the last 20 days? How does Syria giving up its chemical aresnal help the axis resistance and what does it mean for Isreal and her WMD programme? I am aware that Mr Obama has been thrown a lifeline by Mr Putin, but a false flag attack by either the Saudi backed rebels or Isreal can turn things round to war. RUssia Today has been reporting that the Syrian rebels will try to launch a chemical attack on Isreal.

  415. Irshad says:

    @Empty – thank you for your response to my question on nuclear weopans on the last thread. Do you know where I can read more about the Supreme Leaders thoughts on this matter, even a copy of the fatwa??? Thank you

  416. James Canning says:

    Jay,

    Kennedy’s blockade of Cuba was an alternative to an atttack on Cuba that would likely have brought destruction to the entire planet. And you object! Amazing.

  417. kooshy says:

    Regarding this new Syrian / Iranian/ Russian proposal ( keeping Syria’s CW inn care of ?) which probably was privately discussed and passed on by Mr. Putin to Mr. Obama in G20 as a face saving measure for Mr. Obama and the Americans. Cleverly the clear losers of this initiative are Saudis, Israelis, Qataris and the Turks. To make sure this is not going to be hijacked by his allies, I suspect Mr. Obama did not let this become public other than in a coordinated way, which seems it put everybody in a done deal that they have to support.

    For Syria the CW she possessed had no strategic value (that is since she could not use them against Israel or any Arab population and if she did she would get wiped), actually it was a burden (similar to fyi/Smith proposal for Iran stocking ready to fire Nukes).

    With placing the CW under UN/ International custody Syria now can continue cleaning up the insurgency with a renewed legitimacy, Iran can require a Chemical free ME which US will stop since Israel can’t and will not agree to.

    The American/ western client stooges including UK/France Turkey and KSA are clearly the losers Obama will claim victory since he says it was the threat of the force that made Assad give up his CW, Iran, Russia ,will claim prestige since they were instrumental resolving and stopping a big international issue a war. Syria is winner since now there is less probability of American degrading her military and she can continue cleaning up as she was.

  418. James Canning says:

    Jay,

    What are the “consequences” for people from which you believe I “detach” myself?

    If you are referring to the sanctions, I oppose them.

  419. James Canning says:

    Kooshy,

    Financial Times indicates today the notion of Syria’s turning over control of CW to third party, was a comment Kerry made off-hand. But I would agree the notion should have been something Obama himself raised privately with the Russians at the G-20 meeting.

  420. James Canning says:

    BiBiJon,

    A sensible decision by Obama not to attack Syria will not, in my view, cause him anything near the damage so many commentators prattle on about. A sensible decision should be commended. (Assuming CW put into control of 3rd party.)

  421. James Canning says:

    fyi,

    Yes, the sanity and humanity of Nikita Krushchev, saved the world from catastrophe. And he adhered to agreement not to tell the public Kennedy agreed to scrap the Titan missiles in Turkey, as part of the deal.

  422. Kooshy says:

    James Canning says:
    September 10, 2013 at 6:25
    Gav

    Forget the FT look with one

    Claver proposal the resistance made Mr. O for his own sake, face saving of his own blunder CF throw all his Lekudies, Wahhabis, Neocons, and the European poodles under the Bus. And himself come out as the winer on the side of peace seekers . That’s good politics don’t you agree.

    You only can get that from who? Akhonds

  423. James Canning says:

    Daily Telegraph has good report on just how it was that Kerry told reporters in Britain that Syria could avoid an attack if it turns over all CW to the UN.

    Kerry claimed Syria would not do it. Let us hope this assertion is dead wrong.

  424. James Canning says:

    Kooshy,

    I think the proposal for UN to take control of syrian CW is a very good one. If it saves face for Obama, fine. And yes, Aipac and neocons do not like the proposal.

  425. Jay says:

    James Canning says:
    September 10, 2013 at 6:21 pm

    Yes James, I object to arrogance of power.

    There would have been no confrontation if both sides were not intent on expanding their imperialist influence.

    Men of small stature and big egos brought the world to the bring of war – I object!

  426. James Canning says:

    Syrian FM says Syria will sign the chemical weapons treaty. This of course would be a good thing.

  427. James Canning says:

    Jay,

    Yes, every clear-thinking person should be able to object to the brinksmanship witnessed in October 1962.

  428. James Canning says:

    Jay,

    Let’s not forget Castro played a large role in bringing the world to near-catastrophe. A very large role.

  429. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Rd.: “Now, you have to wonder, why obama chose to go to congress? He certainly had the means to start the war, no question. He would have had the congressional backing, very little opposition there.”

    Actually, no. The House was mostly against it. That might have changed with some more politicking on his part, but the Russia-Syria offer may have derailed that.

    “However, for whatever reasons, the brits dropped the ball. Obama got cold feet and didn’t want to be holding the ball in his name,, so he did a CYA with congress.”

    I think it WAS a CYA to go to Congress, because the evidence for Assad being behind the chemical attack was SO weak, and then only 11% of the country supported it, plus the Brit Parliament could see this was a weak case. In other words, the case was SO weak, the desperation to attack Syria on the part of Obama was SO lame, that the whole thing could have ended up being a POLITICAL disaster, especially if it turned out to be a military disaster.

    This doesn’t mean Obama has given up. It just means he’s watching his Nobel Peace Prize and doesn’t want to look TOO much like an OBVIOUS warmonger.

    “1- in his interview on monday obama said he had talked to Putin about Syria surrendering its CW.”

    That is almost certainly a lie on his part.

    “3- Mr Assad just happen to consider surrendering his CW to avoid war.”

    That was probably provoked by Russia jumping on Kerry’s off-hand suggestion in a public statement that Syria could possibly avoid war by turning over its chemical weapons. I suspect Obama wants to strangle Kerry for saying that.

    “4- Kerry just happen to make a gaff.”

    I don’t think it was a “gaffe” I think Kerry tossed it out without thinking about whether Russia would jump on it as an option. Kerry dismissed it by saying he thought Assad would never do, so it wasn’t possible. It was Russia that made it possible.

    Bottom line: The war in Syria is continuing, and Israel needs Syria and Hizballah to go away so they can attack Iran. And Obama supports that plan. So it’s not over.

  430. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Pepe Escobar on Do warmongers dream of playing chess?
    http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Middle_East/MID-03-100913.html

    Exactly as I said…

    Quote

    This was Kerry’s slip: “… [Assad] could turn over any single bit of his chemical weapons to the international community in the next week. Turn it over. All of it. And without delay and allow the full

    and total accounting for that. But he isn’t about to do it, and it can’t be done obviously.”

    It can be done, obviously, as Lavrov turned Kerry’s move against him – forwarding a two-step proposal to Damascus: Syria turns its chemical weapons to UN control and later agrees with their destruction, as well as joining the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons. Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Muallem lost no time in agreeing. The devil, of course, is in the fine print.

    End Quote

    Again, as I said…

    Quote

    In his Monday TV Anschluss, Obama, clinging to the lifeline, was quick to steal Lavrov’s credit, saying he had “discussed” the broad outlook of what Russia announced directly with Putin at the Group of 20 summit last week. This has not been corroborated by Moscow.

    End Quote

    And finally, again as I’ve said (leaving out the “regime change” part)…

    Quote

    Now for the fine print. Everybody knows what happened to Saddam Hussein and Colonel Gaddafi after they gave up their deterrence. Assuming both Washington and Damascus accept Lavrov’s proposal, this could easily be derailed into an Iraqi-style ultra-harsh inspection regime. At least in theory, no US Air Force will attack UN inspectors at Syrian chemical weapons depots. As for false flags, don’t underestimate the deep pockets of Saudi Arabia’s Prince Bandar bin Sultan – aka Bandar Bush.

    Still, considering Washington won’t abandon its real agenda – regime change – Obama might eventually be re-presented with his full Emperor hand to “supervise” the chemical weapons handover and “punish” any infringement, real or otherwise, by Damascus, facilitated by the usual spies infiltrated into the inspectors mechanism. As in, “If you complain, we bomb.”

    The key point in all this, though, is that, for Damascus, chemical weapons are just a detail – they are worthless on the battlefield. What matters is the 250,000-strong Syrian Arab Army (SAA), as well as military support by Iran and especially Russia – as in badass missiles of the Yakhont variety or S-300 (even 400) systems. Destroying the weapons – assuming Damascus agrees – is a very long-term proposition, measured in years; even Russia and the US have not destroyed theirs. By then, the myriad gangs of the “Un-Free” Syrian Army may have been thoroughly defeated.

    Obama may have read the writing on the (bloody) wall; forget about convincing the US Congress to bomb Damascus when there’s a real diplomatic way out on the table. Yet nothing changes in the long run. Those who are paying or cheering in the sidelines for this operation – from Bandar Bush to Tel Aviv – want by all means to smash Damascus, for the benefit of Israel in terms of strategic balance, and for the benefit of the House of Saud in terms of isolating Iran in the Middle East.

    So Lavrov’s chess move is not a checkmate; it is a gambit, meant to prevent the United States from becoming al-Qaeda’s Air Force, at least for now. The quagmire would then move to a negotiating table – which would include those chemical weapons inspections.

    End Quote

  431. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Oh, and this, again as I said…

    “RT has been informed that the ‘rebels’ may be planning a monster false flag on Israel, to be launched from Assad-controlled ground.”

    Again, if you can’t get the war one way, there are always other options…

  432. Sineva says:

    James Canning says:
    September 10, 2013 at 2:53 pm
    When you say “do a deal”,what you really mean is that iran must submit to western demands.There has been no negotiation just the west restating its demand of zero enrichment.As for the cuban missile crisis it was the americans who started that whole mess by putting missiles in turkey,what was russia supposed to do sit back and accept it?.Sadly you seem to be a subscriber to the myth of western exceptionilism ie: “one rule for the west another rule for everyone else” view of the world

  433. Sineva says:

    Jay says:
    September 10, 2013 at 7:18 pm
    You`re wasting your breath Jay,it doesnt matter how many holes you blow in his arguments he just keeps on restating them again and again etc..

  434. Richard Steven Hack says:

    A point I’ve just considered do the above RT report…

    Israel needs Syria to go away so it can attack Hizballah in Lebanon through the Bekaa Valley via Syrian territory without having to engage Syrian troops directly.

    But Israel will do that if it has to. If RT is correct that a false flag attack against Israel is in the cards, that would work. Israel could START the war against Syria, then call in the US and NATO to finish the job. Neither Britain nor France nor Germany would fail to answer an Israeli call. The US Congress would totally support Israel in “retaliating” against Syria. Once the US and NATO were bombing Syria, Israel could proceed with the attack on Hizballah.

    This is hypothetical, but consider that they tried to get Assad to attack Israel before by having the insurgents fire into Israel, then Israel fired back against Syrian positions. But Syria didn’t take the bait. So there is precedence for this. A major false flag attack allegedly by Syria against Israel could trigger the war.

    We KNOW Israel wants the US to bomb Syria. The AIPAC full court press for a US strike makes that certain. So presumably Israel will try to engineer the war now that Obama and Kerry have screwed it up.

  435. fyi says:

    Irshad says:
    September 10, 2013 at 5:58 pm

    The Syrian state and the ethno-religious people who are supporting it (Sunnis, Shia, Christians, Druze, Armenians, Alawites and others) have been forced to rely on Iran and Lebanon.

    Iraq has been driven into even a closer security relationship that before with Iran.

    There is now a strategic jointed-ness between the Persian Gulf and the Levant since Iran, Syria, Iraq, and now non-Sunni Lebanon have been forced to come together to defend themselves.

    I have read reports of 4 million internal Syrian refugees; I imagine that they are the sane Syrians who have taken refuge in the government controlled areas while the 2 million external refugees are probably anti-government populations taking refuge in Jordan and Turkey.

    [Kurds in Iraq and Syria tried to remain neutral but they have no real choices – Turkey and the neo-Salafis will grant them nothing; they will accommodate themselves to the Axis of Resistance.]

    The Syrian chemical weapons were a useful deterrent against similar weapons possessed by the Ba’athist Iraq.

    They have ceased to be of strategic consequence since 2003.

    Giving them up is a good move; it removes Axis Powers cause belli and shifts the burden of disposing of them to wealthy foreigners.

    [Disposing of chemical weapons is not a trivial task; it requires expensive specialized furnaces and some of them have to be buried.

    Let us see who will pay for that clean up.]

    The almost certain cause belli fabricated by the anti-government forces in Syria and the almost immediate subsequent actions of Mr. Obama and Mr. Cameron and Mr. Hollander revealed the desperation of Axis Powers for the destruction of the Ba’ath State in Syria.

    It indicated that regime change in Syria and in Iran remain very much the goal of the Axis Powers.

    What wrecked their plans was the anger and revulsion of the English people – in all walks of life and all political persuasions – of another blatant and shameless attempt at manipulating them into war.

    When the Commons rejected Mr. Cameron’s war legislation; American people joined in with their opposition as well.

    A provocation is still possible but I imagine that the territory of Syria is now under satellite observation and such an attack can be traced to its source.

    Lastly, the fact that the Axis of Resistance have been able to withstand the Axis Powers War in Syria and the Economic Siege War in Iran for so many years indicates their strength.

    They thought that Iran and Syria were little chickens, ready for their necks to be wrung.

    Some chicken!

    Some neck!

  436. kooshy says:

    James Canning says:
    September 10, 2013 at 7:12 pm

    Gav

    Like I wrote it was a win-win for US and specially resistance +2 it was a semi lose for the Brits (saw and dodged the shit) but the poor Hollande, Bander and Erdoghan (three idiots) got shit on their face and eat it too.

    Nice job on part of resistance don’t you agree

  437. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Consider this scenario…

    1) The insurgents fire conventional weapons into Israel, as before.

    2) Israel fires back with greater force than before.

    3) The INSURGENTS then fire rockets with chemical weapons into Israel, in an attempt to either make it seem like Assad’s forces did it or that Hizballah did it with Assad support.

    4) Israel then has two choices: 1) blame Assad for the attack, or 2) blame the insurgents for the attack. The former “justifies” an attack against Syria. The latter “justifies” an attack against Syria because “Assad can’t control his chemical weapons” or “Assad has given chemical weapons to Hizballah.”

    5) Either way, Israel launches a moderate-scale war on Syria. It also calls for the US and NATO to come in and assist. I have no doubt the US Congress, British Parliament and French Parliaments and likely the German Bundestag would all support Israel.

    6) The US and NATO begin a full-scale air campaign against Syria.

    7) Israel then uses that as cover to attack Hizballah in Lebanon.

    The only thing that would derail that plan is if enough evidence leaked out in time, like the current false flag operation did, to blunt the effect. But there would be very little time because Israel would move quickly to attack Syria. My guess is that it would be mere days before Israel could call up its reserves and initiate the attack.

    They can’t keep these false flag operations up for TOO long or the entire world will become suspicious. They have to fish or cut bait.

  438. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Gareth Porter on Intrigue surrounds Obama’s intel
    http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Middle_East/MID-02-100913.html

    The intel community did NOT sign off on it.

  439. Richard Steven Hack says:

    An analysis of Kerry’s missteps…

    Kerry becomes first war casualty
    http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Middle_East/MID-01-100913.html

    Quote

    Kerry, of course, opted to give a wide berth to Putin. But all this became a picnic when on Monday he undercut Obama’s war strategy with a stunning public statement in response to a smart query by a CBS reporter Margaret Brennan as to whether there could be any way an attack on Syria could be averted. This is what Kerry said:

    Sure, if he could turn over every single bit of his chemical weapons to the international community, in the next week, turn it over. All of it, without delay and allow a full and total accounting for that, but he isn’t about to do it, and it can’t be done, obviously.

    Within hours all hell broke loose. The high drama was neatly captured by the well-known Nigerian-American novelist Teju Cole (author of Open City), who twittered:

    Kerry: We won’t attack … if you do this impossible thing. Syria? Oh, We’ll do it. Russia: They’ll do it. UN: They’ll do it. Kerry: Shit!

    End Quote

    And this…

    Quote

    All sorts of conspiracy theories have since popped up – including that a secret Russian-American plan is afoot to help Obama to beat a decent retreat from war plan against Syria. But the honest truth is Kerry made yet another gaffe, and this time it took a life of its own.

    End Quote

    Exactly as I’ve said…

    And this…

    Quote

    Nothing is worse than when one’s predecessor in the job has to step in to cover for your inadequacy. Yet, this is what former secretary of state Hillary Clinton had to say following a meeting with Obama:

    … if the [Syrian] regime immediately surrendered its stockpiles to international control as was suggested by Secretary Kerry and the Russians, that would be an important step. But this cannot be another excuse for delay or obstruction.

    Clinton’s ingenuous logic runs as follows: Syria can go ahead and surrender its stockpiles within a week if it wants, which is logistically impossible anyway, but the US will nonetheless go ahead with the war plan because that it what our Saudi partners want.

    End Quote

  440. Jay says:

    James Canning says:
    September 10, 2013 at 6:23 pm

    James,

    consequences the flow from an imperial view of the world are numerous.

    Explore the imperial mind. Why in your view it is okay for the UK to “want” Iran to suspend 20% enrichment?

  441. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Justin Raimondo thinks “we beat the War Party”…

    He can’t be that naive – or maybe he is.

    Earlier he was hallucinating that the appointment of Kerry and Hagel was going to “beat the War Party”. How did that work out for him, given that Kerry has been pushing the Syria war every single day? Hagel hasn’t exactly been helpful in that respect, either.

    The reality is the War Party is as strong as ever. They’re going to get a Syria war, then an Iran war no matter what it takes.

  442. Richard Steven Hack says:

    So look what happened next…The US immediately went to the UN and wanted a UNSC Resolution AUTHORIZING MILITARY ACTION!

    Kerry, Lavrov to meet on Russian proposal after Russia balks at plan for U.N. action
    http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/middle_east/france-to-author-security-council-resolution-to-require-syria-to-give-up-chemical-weapons/2013/09/10/0d51a06c-19ff-11e3-a628-7e6dde8f889d_story.html

    Quote

    After near-constant consultations through Monday night into the morning, the United States, France and Britain agreed on the need to establish a legally binding chemical inspection regime backed by the authorization to use force if Syria did not comply with its terms.

    By mid-morning, Russia had rejected a proposed U.N. resolution, announced by French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius, and called an emergency Security Council meeting. Lavrov called the threat of military action “unacceptable,” and Russian President Vladmir Putin said a weapons deal would work only if the United States and others “tell us they’re giving up their plan to use force against Syria.”

    End Quote

    So who says Obama has dropped his desire for a Syria war?

  443. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Syrian FM: Syria will sign chemical ban, open storage sites
    http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/world/2013/09/10/syria-un-resolution-france/2791315/

    “Putin acknowledged that he had discussed such a possibility with President Obama on the sidelines of the G-20 summit last week in St. Petersburg, Russia. It was agreed, Putin said, “to instruct Secretary of State (John Kerry) and Foreign Minister (Sergey Lavrov) to get in touch” and “try to move this idea forward.”

    He’s just being nice to Obama… The reality is Kerry messed up. That’s totally obvious to everyone. In the interests of moving the deal forward, Putin is going along with it. But it’s a total lie.

    Quote

    Fabius said the terms of the resolution will call for an “extremely serious” response if Syria were to violate the conditions set by the resolution. He said the process — under Chapter 7 of the U.N. charter — will start later Tuesday.

    End Quote

    In other words, if Obama claims Syria is back-tracking, the UNSC Resolution will authorize a military strike – solving Obama’s political problems.

    But Russia and China won’t back that Resolution. So the whole process could grind to a halt over the language. Then Obama can spin that Russia and China “ruined the deal” – and it’s back to air strikes.

  444. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Intercepts caught Assad rejecting requests to use chemical weapons, German paper says
    http://www.mcclatchydc.com/2013/09/09/201515/intercepts-caught-assad-rejecting.html#.Ui8kgFLNk_4

  445. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Syria: Assad not Responsible for Ghouta Gas Attack, Says Freed Hostage Pierre Piccinin
    http://www.ibtimes.co.uk/articles/504735/20130909/syria-chemical-attack-assad-rebels-blame-hostage.htm

    Actually he’s saying he overheard a conversation about it, but he can’t say if it’s true or not. But along with the other hostage who overheard the conversation, it’s clear this is more evidence against the insurgents.

  446. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Narcissists are ruining America
    http://www.salon.com/2013/09/08/war_mongers_are_appalling_narcissists/

    As Norman Finkelstein said, Obama is a “stunning narcissist.”

  447. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Rebels accuse Assad, Russia of deceit in chemical plan
    http://news.yahoo.com/rebels-accuse-assad-russia-deceit-over-chemical-plan-165134204.html

    Duh…

  448. Richard Steven Hack says:

    And he’s trying to make it fail with the UN Resolution…

    Obama: U.S. military ready if Russia’s Syria plan fails
    http://news.yahoo.com/-what-to-expect-from-obama%E2%80%99s-syria-speech–234047363.html

  449. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Russian report: Syrian rebels planning chem. attack on Israel
    http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4427731,00.html

  450. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Some U.S. Military Officers Not Happy With Syrian War Prep
    http://swampland.time.com/2013/09/09/mal-shaping-the-syrian-battlefield/

    Of course, they’re not. They don’t know what the purpose is and Obama can’t tell them it’s ultimately to allow Israel to attack Iran…

    But it is another example of how the military gets over-ruled by the politicians. When Obama wants war, he’ll get it. He doesn’t care how screwed up it gets down the road. He has his orders from his masters.

  451. Richard Steven Hack says:

    More provocation…

    British jets in Cyprus scrambled to chase after Syrian planes that crossed into international airspace
    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2415394/British-jets-Cyprus-scrambled-chase-Syrian-planes-crossed-international-airspace.html#ixzz2eJdYCX4f

  452. Richard Steven Hack says:

    More propaganda tying the Syrian crisis to Hizballah…

    Israeli report maps Assad’s chemical arsenal

    Report by IDC counter-terrorist think-tank presents inventory of Syria’s chemical munitions production, storage facilities, argues Syrian regime has been stockpiling since 1980s, arms could reach Hezbollah, Palestinians

    http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4427692,00.html

  453. Bussed-in Basiji says:

    Ataune, Empty, kooshy, M.Ali, others interested,

    What Jenabe fyi doesn’t want to acknowledge is that things like “inherent human diginity”, “intrinsic rights” (haq-e zati, keramat-e ensani) are themselves contested and debatable concepts based on a very particular view of the human being.

    He goes on about these as though there are a given and then berates anyone who dares to question these.

    Opposed to this view of human beings (and its consequences) is the Quranic view of human beings/humanity with Divine fitrat requiring risalat/revelations/shariat to attain human completion (and its consequences)- individually and communally.

    You say: “well this is also contested Jenabe Basiji!”

    Precisely! And so at best we have contending fundamental views and human beings (and its consequences), not that universal liberal western intrinsic human rights/dignity discourse- which btw, is itself a religion- espoused by you-know-who.

    Or as the Holy Quran says:

    “Say: O unbelievers

    I do not serve that which you serve

    Nor do you serve Him Whom I serve

    Nor am I going to serve that which you serve

    Nor are you going to serve Him Whom I serve

    You shall have your religion and I shall have my religion”

    Hard to claim that “religion is there to unite people” after those words. It seems that in the end it is there to “distinguish” human beings- all connotations of the word “distinguish” intended.

    And we don’t have to even get into the irony of “matching the westerners” on the amount of peoples killed, maimed, tortured, expelled, exploited abroad etc. while they were pursuing “human rights and dignity” at home.

    Res publica Christiana…updated for secular liberals and raised to the nth degree.

    As somebody said: “The more liberal at home, the more genocidal abroad.”

    The akhunds and devotees of western liberalism will never acknowledge this as most are blind to it.

    As the Holy Quran says:

    “The day when We will call all/every people with their Imam…and whoever is blind in this, he shall also be blind in the hereafter and most erring form the way”

  454. M. Ali says:

    “Can majority dictate to minority whom to marry?”

    Yes. Yes, majority can say that they accept same-sex marriages, and if 90% of a population views this as acceptable, it would be wrong for a governmental representative not to make it law.
    And vise versa. If majority does not accept same-sex marriage, then it shouldn’t be allowed, no matter how much the 10% liberals think its cruel not to allow it.

    “What to study?”

    Yes. If the majority finds certain topics against their belief system, then I think it should be the role of the universities to ban those subjects, as long as the majority is fine with the ban, again, no matter how much the minority screams about Orwellian methods.

    “Where to live?”

    Yes. If the majority finds a certain site holy and does not find people living there, then it should be the role of the government to protect it. If the majority have strong feelings towards their enviroment, then it should be the role of the government to safeguard it, refusing people to buy the land and build estates there.

    “How to live?”

    Yes. If the majority finds certain acts against their belief system and custom, then it should be the role of the government to enforce it. If a member of society wants to hold his daughter in a cage and have routine sex with her, and thats the way he wants to live, then the government should step in and stop it.

    “Can majority tell others what to believe?”

    The majority can’t force anyone to believe anything, but laws should reflect the majority’s belief system. If the majority believe that cows are Gods, then while they can’t force every member of the society to believe the same, they CAN pass laws to prevent the eating of cows.

    “Can majority, legalize prostitution?”

    Yes.

    I have answered your questions, but you have refused to answer the opposite. In your system, what exactly stops a minority in doing whatever it wants? As beautiful and 60s flower power it sounds that the government doesn’t tell the individual how to dress and how to live, what happens if the individual decides to act in a certain way that is completely against the society’s norms, that is, to go out naked, to have sex in public places, to have incestual relationships, to get involved in sodomy, to desecrate images that the public holds dear, and such.

    What do you do with this guy? Do you arrest him?

    This has a yes or no answer,

    If No, then fine, at least I know your position is constant and I respect it for that,
    But if yes, then the additional questions would be,
    What if he just did one of those? Would you still arrest him?

    If the answer then depends on the act, then you are doing exactly what IRI is doing.

  455. M. Ali says:

    As we can see from the developments, I again repeat my previous statement that Russia & Syria really messed this up.

    Now we can see that there are disputes with the resolution. The blame will fall on Russia & Syria, who would be seen to refuse Obama’s peaceful and groundbreaking alternative. His narrative will be complete. His sales tactic of showing that he, the peace king, is being forced into a conflict, will be more successful. USA’s allies who were running around like headless chickens have suddenly been pushed together because of this inniative, and now if the iniative fails, the Allies will be stronger than ever. Russia helped them come together.

    On the other hand, if somehow Russia & Syria agree to this intiative, then both of their positions will be much weaker. USA will have a much greater reason for attack in the future (we had a deal!! They broke their word!! They misused our trust!! They lied to us!!), and as they will have their eyes on the ground, they will be in te perfect position to not only buy people in the government for information, but all their inspections will be a gold mine for intelligence in the Syria army, making it easier for the attack.

    And while I don’t agree in countries GETTING Chemical Weapons or Nuclear Weapons, but if they already have it, I don’t agree them giving it up out of fear. Syria’s message to the world is, “Here! Take my weapons, but PLEASE don’t attack us!”. Russia also is giving a very weak message of itself, “pleaaaase don’t attack my ally! I’ll make them give up their weapons”. Putin should either act like the Russia of old and stand by its allies, or stop pretending they have balls.

    Russia’s action should have been, here Assad, take this billions of anti-aircraft weapons on credit, you can pay for them next year. LET USA attack. Russia doesn’t need Assad to win, he just needs him to survive. Pump in money, weapons, and intelligence.

    My biggest concern over all of this, is that this miscalculation may have also been due to Iran’s new government. I’d hate to think that Syria & Russia talked it over with Iran too, and Iran’s Rohani cabinet giving them the go ahead.

  456. M. Ali says:

    Here is how successful USA is being in selling the war, specially with this tactic. Before this “proposal”, there was a huge anti-war mentality. Congress was against it, people were against it, and situation was similiar in France & UK.

    Now look, after Obama’s speech yesterday,

    “The survey indicates that the speech didn’t move the needle very much on whether U.S. air strikes against Syria would achieve significant goals for the U.S. Thirty percent of speech-watchers questioned before the address said yes. That number edged up to 36% following the address. And 39% said it was in the national interests of the U.S. to be involved in the conflict in Syria, edging up from 30% before the speech.”

    So its obvious that already the tide is turning. Now how will the public react when Obama’s peaceful and war-preventing deal fails due to Russia & Syria not being as committed to a peaceful solution as the peace king?

    Or how about this,
    “The poll indicates that nearly two-thirds of those who watched the speech think that the situation in Syria is likely to be resolved through diplomatic efforts,”

    What happens to this group once the diplomatic efforts fail?

  457. M. Ali says:

    by the way, this is completely off topic, but I’ve been meaning to post this for a while.

    I got this random email (Which was obviously mass mailed) a while back,

    From: ****
    Sent: Thursday, August 22, 2013 2:36:20 PM (UTC+02:00) Jerusalem
    To: ****
    Subject: Iranian nuclear project

    All,

    Many of you will have received a message about ***** Company and supporting the Iranian nuclear programme. The information contained in the email is true and we have spent many years using these practices to deceive companies into helping Iran. If your company is uncomfortable with this situation we would advise you to tell us immediately, we do not want to work with companies who do not believe in Iranian nuclear project.

    Regards

    Do you notice the sent time zone? Haha, don’t this Zionists have anything better to do? Everything they do is false flag!

  458. Sineva says:

    M. Ali says:
    September 11, 2013 at 4:18 am
    I agree completely,putin should have supplied syria with the weapons to defend itself from any strike,instead they`re trying to appease obama,but then the russians have once again shown themselves to be weak and untrustworthy allies/partners

  459. BiBiJon says:

    In defense of strategic thinking with the right organs
    ===================================================

    M.Ali & Sineva

    You seem to think Russia has shown no balls in engineering an international consensus on removal of CW out of Syria, and thereby removing a major source of propaganda, false flags, and red lines being issued by Iran’s enemies. And, lets talk straight here, it is the animosity towards Iran that is the driver of all this enmity towards Syria.

    I recommend you read fyi’s comment @ September 10, 2013 at 8:47 pm.

    I think Russia (and Iran and Syria) have shown considerable brain power. It is a fool’s game to beat your chest at US’ $600-biilion-per-year-military. Russia has been there, and done that, and ultimately it nearly damn destroyed Russia.

    Similarly short-sighted is to participate in an arms race in the Syrian theater. E.g. Supplying s-300 would be like opening the gates for unlimited supply of weapons, including shoulder-fired SAMs to the Takfiris. Russia is very smart in looking for other alternatives to stave off aggression on Syria.

    Frustrated with losses on the ground, and inability to use as excuse for intervention on behalf of the Takfiriss all the atrocities and casualties of the Syrian civil war, UK and France decided to prod US into action with CW falseflag. That gave Russia and Iran a very specific diplomatic target: get rid of (useless) CW, and you’ve got rid of excuse for aggression.

    From Russia’s perspective, US is very busy bleeding credibility in the Mid East. The last thing Russia should do is to pick a fight with US military and give her a legitimate, and worthy target, the Russian military. Absent that, it is the credibility shredding scenario of Goliath beating on David, and even less photogenic, being seen as losing.

    The risks of he lengthy process of tCW inspections/destruction, etc being abused to start up the war drums is no worse than the risks already present. It should not be exaggerated. Also, Russia and Iran do not think ‘whoopy’ we won! This is only but one move in a series of moves in what is likely to be an exhaustingly long dance. The strategist with brains has to bet on who’s likely to be exhausted first. The era of clear-cut victories established on a battlefield are over.

  460. Dan Cooper says:

    The intrinsic criminality of the atomic bombing is borne out in the US National Archives and by the subsequent decades of militarism camouflaged as democracy.

    The Syria psychodrama exemplifies this. Yet again, we are held hostage to the prospect of a terrorism whose nature and history even the most liberal critics still deny.

    The great unmentionable is that humanity’s most dangerous enemy resides across the Atlantic.

    John Kerry’s farce and Barack Obama’s pirouettes are temporary. Russia’s peace deal over chemical weapons will, in time, be treated with the contempt that all militarists reserve for diplomacy.

    With Al-Qaida now among its allies, and US-armed coupmasters secure in Cairo, the US intends to crush the last independent states in the Middle East: Syria first, then Iran.

    “This operation [in Syria],” said the former French foreign minister Roland Dumas in June, “goes way back. It was prepared, pre-conceived and planned.”

    When the public is “psychologically scarred”, as the Channel 4 reporter Jonathan Rugman described the British people’s overwhelming hostility to an attack on Syria, reinforcing the unmentionable is made urgent.

    Whether or not Bashar al-Assad or the “rebels” used gas in the suburbs of Damascus, it is the US not Syria that is the world’s most prolific user of these terrible weapons.

    In 1970, the Senate reported, “The US has dumped on Vietnam a quantity of toxic chemical (dioxin) amounting to six pounds per head of population”. This was Operation Hades, later renamed the friendlier Operation Rand Hand: the source of what Vietnamese doctors call a “cycle of foetal catastrophe”.

    I have seen generations of young children with their familiar, monstrous deformities. John Kerry, with his own blood-soaked war record, will remember them.

    I have seen them in Iraq, too, where the US used depleted uranium and white phosphorous, as did the Israelis in Gaza, raining it down on UN schools and hospitals. No Obama “red line” for them. No showdown psychodrama for them.

    http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article36191.htm

  461. M. Ali says:

    BiBiJon, but what are Syria and their allies getting out of this? What benefit are they getting? Basically, they are responding to a threat by losing ground. America is saying, either do this or I will attack you. Once you agree to the former without getting much in return, what happens 3 months down the line? What else will you give up when the next military threat comes up?

    Specially, what you are giving up, just makes the next military threat easier, from a psychological perspective (suddenly it will Syria and Russia who would have ruined the peaceful deal) and from a military perspective, such as intelligence, etc. Finally, under the threat of military strikes, Syria is willingly reduce its powers.

    Now, if there was a resolution which said, that once Syria does this, USA will not engage EVER with Syria, then it would be a win. If there was statements which would say that the allies would work with Russia to disarm the rebels, then it would be a win.

    All that will come out of this is delay military attack for a little while, when the same sitation occurs, all that would have changed would be a strong Allies coliation, more support for Obama, and a weaker Syria. What would Russia convince Syria to give up then? Assad at the rein?

  462. M. Ali says:

    Also, by accepting to this proposal, Assad has basically told the world that yes, we have CW, and yes, we were behind the attacks. Because why else would they give it up if they weren’t guilty?

  463. BiBiJon says:

    Karl.. says:
    September 10, 2013 at 5:34 pm

    “US threat Syria and succeeds.. Thats quite bad because now US will likely use threats against Iran for the same reasons..”

    Karl, as you know, this is precisely the spin Israeli press is putting out. Unable to admit that their gambit to have US attack Syria and then get into an altercation with Iran, they are trying to say “threat” worked. And, of course Obama has to take credit for peace, now that he failed to convince anybody that war should be waged.

    But the truth may be elsewhere. Momentous junctures in history are often overlooked by the contemporary analyst. Possibly imperceptible to us, not only do large military maneuvers any longer make sense (Robert Gates said anyone suggesting it post-Iraq should have their heads examined) but now even the threat of an “unbelievably small” bombardment appears to be a “very heavy lift” in public opinion.

    Obama, despite himself, may have ushered in the era of ‘cooperation’ as the primary tool of maintaining world order, and banished coercive, militaristic approaches.

    And to the mere faint hopelessly wishful possibility of that, I say Hallelujah!

  464. Neo says:

    Bussed-in Basiji says: September 8, 2013 at 3:44 pm

    Basiji jan,

    My view on the “complete bankruptcy of the US political process” and “what should people in the US who care, do about it” is quite simple.

    The problems is the deadly mix of capitalism with representative democracy. This is an inherently corrupt system that inevitably leads to the ownership of the political class by the rich. As wealth becomes more concentrated, the power of the rich is also further concentrated, and the general population is basically disregarded in the decision-making process, other than as ‘sheep’ who are manipulated into ‘choosing’ someone every 4 or 5 years.

    In my view, people who care about this in the US and elsewhere should do away with the system of representative democracy (they don’t have much chance of doing away with capitalism at this stage). And replace it with a system of Direct Democracy.

    Citizens should take responsibility for their own communities’ affairs and participate in all the major national and more minor local decisions (like the Swiss do). This is quite easy to do in the age of the internet ans smartphones. If we can already handle our financial affairs on line, we surely can have enough security to handle voting on line.

    This would stop countries from making rash decisions, and it would ensure that the will of the majority is reflected in actual decisions made. Most Americans would have voted for Obamacare and against the Iraq war. It would also reduce the power of corporations. At the very least, they would have to ensure that a majority of the people are ‘bought’ rather than a few cheap, self-serving, ignorant and power-hungry ‘politicians’.

    Representative democracy has a tendency to favour scum who love power, and have the knack to rise to the top at the expense of others. Just like scum! :)

  465. BiBiJon says:

    M. Ali says:
    September 11, 2013 at 8:39 am

    If it is OK let me answer point by point. These are of course mu humble opinion which more frequently than I care to count has been wrong. I say this, so if I seem to sound assertive, I haven’t gone RSH, its just for brevity’s sake.

    “but what are Syria and their allies getting out of this? What benefit are they getting? Basically,”

    They are getting the moral high ground. The headlines say Assad signs CW treaty, a marked difference to headines accusing him of using it, and/or headlines that say he is only no using it because of Obama’s red lines.

    They are also staving off direct external intervention in what is, for the Syrian government, a winning streak. In other words, they are getting ‘time.’

    “they are responding to a threat by losing ground. America is saying, either do this or I will attack you. ”

    What threat? It dried on the grape vine. Obama didn’t scare anyone though he might try and say he did. In reality his “heavy lift” misrebly fained in the British Parliament, in G20 meeting, in public opinion. He just called off the vote in congress. What threat?

    “Once you agree to the former without getting much in return, what happens 3 months down the line? What else will you give up when the next military threat comes up?”

    What Syria has “forced” US to give as a price for the lifeline, is time. Time to alter realities on the ground, perceptions in the air, and change hearts and minds. NY Times reports ‘rebels’ have run over a Christian village. Time is an important commodity when your opponent, and their supporters are busy shooting themselves in the foot.

    “Specially, what you are giving up, just makes the next military threat easier, from a psychological perspective (suddenly it will Syria and Russia who would have ruined the peaceful deal) and from a military perspective, such as intelligence, etc. Finally, under the threat of military strikes, Syria is willingly reduce its powers.”

    I don’t see many people buying tickets to the same dog and pony show, do you?

    “Now, if there was a resolution which said, that once Syria does this, USA will not engage EVER with Syria, then it would be a win. If there was statements which would say that the allies would work with Russia to disarm the rebels, then it would be a win.”

    I understand Putin has said for the deal to work the threat of military action must be removed. At this juncture, it is Putin who has the stronger political hand — he is holding the rope, and Obama is climbing out of a hole — I bet Putin to get his way at the UNSC, the resolution will say the opposite of what you’re fearing.

    “All that will come out of this is delay military attack for a little while, when the same sitation occurs, all that would have changed would be a strong Allies coliation, more support for Obama, and a weaker Syria. What would Russia convince Syria to give up then? Assad at the rein?”

    A coalition did not form around the idea of an “unbelievably small” show of force, despite wall-to-wall media campaign to demonize Assad. I’m very skeptical a stronger coalition will form around ‘Evil Assad II” when the original bummed so spectacularly.

    “Also, by accepting to this proposal, Assad has basically told the world that yes, we have CW,”

    Polls indicate there’s hardly anybody on the planet that does not believe Syria possesses CW. But there may be some exaggerations that can be put to rest once and for all, e.g. Assad has the 3rd largest stockpile in the world, etc.

    “and yes, we were behind the attacks. Because why else would they give it up if they weren’t guilty?”

    I interpret this as the opposite. Why would anyone who only 2 weeks ago feel it was at least tactically essential to use CW, today be ready to eschew their use. No, surely it indicates Assad had no use for them then, or now — it was a useless albatross round his neck.

  466. Neo says:

    Bussed-in Basiji says: September 8, 2013 at 3:42 pm

    Basiji jan,

    Glad to note that you “try to live up to the standards set by Imam Ali (as)- and how beautiful a life it is trying to do so.” I wish you luck in that, and would myself like to be able to live up to the advice of such wise people as he.

    Occasionally, you come across as ‘superior’ as the exceptionalists (don’t know what else to call them!), but it is clear that this is more of a reaction than an attitude.

    Reason why I put “inferior” in parentheses and assumed that non-believer equals “inferior” is because I have often confronted this view of non-believers by believers, including on this site. There was a hint of it in your earlier posts (not important). You know how Iranians generally react when someone ‘admits’ to being an atheist. Remember how some on this site reacted when I mentioned that I was an atheist? Some reminded me of this ‘wonderful’ expression “laa mazhab”…!

    Unlike many idiotic atheists and secularists, I don’t look down on believers at all. I look down on all people equally and fairly…! (joke – a bad one too perhaps!)

    What I really mean is that it is not the beliefs and ideologies that make people ‘right’ or ‘good’ or otherwise (including in the eyes of ‘god’, if s/he exists. For ‘god’ would Have to be just – or just not be worth the bother).

    It is our personality types and what lurks deep in our hearts that makes the difference. It’s that sub-conscious (or ‘soul’ if you like) that drives us into being loving or hateful beings.

  467. M. Ali says:

    Bibijon, I admit you have made some great points. You might be right, and I will say that I hope you are. Thanks for responding.

  468. Neo says:

    M. Ali says: September 11, 2013 at 8:42 am

    Ali,

    They never claimed that they don’t have chemical weapons. They do.

    I heard from some reliable sources in refugee camps that Assad’s men may have in fact used some chemical weapons, but without his order. May be he is trying to save the regime by accepting this. Or may be it is a delaying tactic. Who is going to know how much and where these weapons are.

    Seems to me, everyone is trying to save Obama from his own folly, including Assad.

  469. Neo says:

    Richard,

    you still think they are going to attack? Does not look like it now, does it?

  470. fyi says:

    M. Ali says:

    September 11, 2013 at 2:46 am

    You then support Tyranny.

    As to your question about the behavior of Minorirty – it is constrained by Law and Custom.

    And the Law is itself constrained by the Revelations as well as prior Custom.

  471. kooshy says:

    Ali, BiBi

    In my opinion it wasn’t Syria who was disarmed; if you think about it in a clever way effectively it is Obama who is disarmed, once the unusable burden of CW are removed US will need to use other excuses , which are a lot more harder to convince the voters and international community. I must say and I looks to me this was a coordinated way that Obama whole hearthedly jumped on, knowing it only works if he abandones all his EU/ Arab/ Likudiks/ Turk Clients they will need a while to get themselves back in the game.

  472. fyi says:

    Sineva says:

    September 11, 2013 at 4:53 am

    M. Ali is wrong; the Chemical Weapons were useless and it is best give them up and have someone else defray the cost of disposing of them.

  473. M. Ali says:

    fyi, have you studied philosophy extensively? I ask this, because i notice you don’t answer directly, and would rather reply by using vague philosophical concepts.

    For example, when I discuss a situation where a minority will act in certain actions, what should be done?

    You haven’t directy answered, but you have given your words-that-begin-with-capital-letters, so I’ll try to pull out some actual facts out of for me to be able to better discuss the point.

    “As to your question about the behavior of Minorirty – it is constrained by Law…”

    If you mention Law, then you are allowing the Law-Givers & Law-Makers & Law-Enforcers the authority to be able to restrain said behavior. Which is not any different than what IRI does nor what anyone here is arguing. But what exactly is this Law? How will this Law come into being? Does every person have their OWN Law, or is there going to be a Universal Law, or are we going to have a democracy, where in the majority chooses representatives to pass law that they find best meets the requirments of their society?

    “… and Custom”

    In every society and every group of people, there are people that refuse to follow the “restrains of Custom”. Sometimes it just takes ONE PERSON refusing to accept certain customs, for the government and the society that demands it, to restrain them.

    In Germany, in 2001, Armin Meiwes went online , looking for a certain kind of person. He wanted a person to volunetary accept to be eaten. He found one. Now, this was an interesting situation, out of a population of 80 million Germans, all it took was one person refusing to follow his country’s Custom of not eating people. Armin Meiwes was charged with manslaughter even though the case was complicated since the victim had agreed to be killed and eaten. But what was even more interesting, was that there was actually no laws in Germany against cannibalism. After this case, they had to change the laws to make cannibalism illegal.

    So here was a minority that was not restrained by Custom.

    Which, by the way, Custom is defined by the Majority, it doesn’t poof come out of nowhere.

    “And the Law is itself constrained by the Revelations as well as prior Custom.”

    If the Law is constrained by Revelations, then you need someone to define these Revalations. Which i would argue is what Iran is doing. Although, obviously the society in Israel will have different laws because they interpret the Revelations differently, as would USA, as would Russia, as such.

    And prior Custom is again, majority.

    So, again, in simple non-philosophical terms, in which no mention of Fall of Man or Random Words in Capital are mentioned, what if a 0.5% minority decide to walk around naked in Iran? They don’t care about Custom and the Law has been changed by New King of Iran, His Excellency FYI, to remove any government control over people’s instrintic human rights and their attire, so what happens now? Is this okay?

    A few years of posting, and I think none of us have understood what exactly fyi actually believes in or what stance you actually take on anything.

  474. Sineva says:

    M. Ali says:
    September 11, 2013 at 8:39 am
    Theres a word for this,its one mister canning is a big fan of,its called appeasement and historically it hasnt been too successful

  475. Rd. says:

    BiBiJon says:

    “Obama, despite himself, may have ushered in the era of ‘cooperation’ as the primary tool of maintaining world order, and banished coercive, militaristic approaches.”
    Very well said. With the successful campaign to end the Syrian crises, you can say Putin ‘in general’ (with help from resistance, other factors) has brought back the MULTILATERARISM . This by itself will have profound impact on the world order, and in particular on Iran’s negotiations. Time will tell, that obama himself may have come to accept that (by hooks or crooks) and perhaps even ‘some’ of his handlers had provided him the backing. It would be hard to imagine he came to accept by himself alone. The alternative would have been a fast track down.

  476. Sineva says:

    fyi says:
    September 11, 2013 at 9:44 am
    The syrians didnt think so considering the time,money and effort they put into acquiring these weapons in the first place and I`ve no doubt that like all wmd they have a deterrent value,as to how great you would have to ask the israelis and they arent saying.The whole point of a deterrent is to deter it is not there to be relinquished as an act of appeasement to try and avoid enemy aggression,the only winners in this is israel and america.The other option would be to give up syrias current arsenal but to then begin production of a new one after assad has crushed the insurgency

  477. Ataune says:

    @Ali

    “Constrained” is usually a willful act taken by an individual with the goal of not bypassing certain boundaries while “restrain” is a forceful act (from outside oneself or inside) that prevents bypassing those boundaries. Fyi use of the former instead of the latter is purposeful. He is still objecting to the truth that laws and costums and morality are an outside and community-enforced rules. This is the way for him to show that it is the individual who should [will?] decide to go by the rules or not.

  478. fyi says:

    M. Ali says:

    September 11, 2013 at 10:24 am

    Your example refers to criminal behavior and the Law is there to prevent it as well as to exact retribution.

    And no system of Laws and Customes will prevent perversion and criminlaity and deviance.

    Theft, murder, rape, deviance, thuggery will always be with us – as well as poverty, prostitution and a number of other things.

    Every male has got equipment to commit rape.

    Per your line of reasoning, a minority of men commit rape.

    So, let us now force all men to wear some sort of electronic device and then furnsih all women the remote control for those devices who could then cause an electric shock in the concerned organ in case they fear rape.

  479. BiBiJon says:

    Sineva says:
    September 11, 2013 at 10:55 am

    I tried gaming this deterrence doctrine with fyi a while back. Maybe you’ll be more game. I’m Assad, you are Netanyahu.

    Game starts with daily incursion of IAF F15s into Syrian airspace and bombing. This started 2 weeks ago.

    Your move.

  480. Rd. says:

    Sineva says:

    “I`ve no doubt that like all wmd they have a deterrent value,as to how great you would have to ask the israelis and they arent saying.”

    Hezbollah has no CW. Would it be fair to say they have successfully deterred the mad dogs?

    On the other hand, with Syrian signing the CW convention, there is “opportunity” to get israel to sign the CW convention as well. Though it may be somewhat symbolic in lieu of their NW, it is a first step.

  481. BiBiJon says:

    Breaking news…

    Iran: Supreme Leader orders review of detained opposition leaders
    http://www.payvand.com/news/13/sep/1069.html

  482. Fiorangela says:

    BiBiJon says: September 11, 2013 at 10:36 am

    Thanks for the link to Vineyardsaker, BiBiJon.

    re Russian ships in Mediterranean — anyone else worried that someone might do unto Russian or American ships what was done unto USS Liberty?

    Would such a strike be strategically useful (in the calculus of an entity that would do such a thing)?

    Does Bandar have an actual army, or CIA-type organization, or does he rent his military/dirty deeds capabilities?

  483. James Canning says:

    Sineva,

    Syrian CW have virtually zero value in deterring Israeli airstrikes.

  484. James Canning says:

    Sineva,

    Did the USSR “appease” the US when it agreed to remove its missiles and nukes from Cuba? Or simply make a sensible deal?

  485. Karl.. says:

    Rd.

    One need to be very naive to think that Israel ever will sign a document regarding their WMD.

  486. James Canning says:

    M. Ali,

    The Russians want Syria to get rid of CW. The Russians continue to say Assad did not order the Aug 21 CW attack. Currently, Syria’s CW pose a threat to Assad gov’t.

  487. Fiorangela says:

    http://www.idsa.in/idsacomments/TheGreatGasGameoverSyria_gdietl_090913

    “The Great Gas Game over Syria
    Share on facebook Share on twitter Share on email More Sharing Services
    Gulshan Dietl

    September 9, 2013

    Even as much has been written about the regional and global actors pursuing their pitiless agendas in Syria, one sub-plot in the vicious drama has remained relatively unexplored. And that is the gas resource and its routes from production to the market.

    The past five years have seen discoveries of immense energy reserves in the Eastern Mediterranean; both the Levant Basin located along the shores of Syria, Lebanon, Israel, Gaza and Cyprus and the Nile Basin north of Egypt. According to preliminary geological surveys, the Levant Basin contains 3.5 trillion cubic meters (tcm) of gas and 1.7 billion barrels (bb) of oil. The Nile Basin contains 6 tcm of gas and 1.8 bb of oil.

    The energy bonanza has predictably led to competitive resource scramble and its transport to the favoured customers. After all, the control of and access to the natural resources have been fundamental drivers of much of geopolitics. The roads, railways, ports, as also the oil and gas pipelines are the coveted objects of the powerful. The oil and gas have a three-fold merit: as the commodity inside, as the containers of that commodity and as the carriers of that commodity.

    Syria alone is estimated to have discovered proven gas reserves of 284 bcm, oil reserves of 2.5 bb and shale reserves of 50 billion tonnes with the possibility of more findings.”

    + + +

    a congressman ??? Meadows was on C Span Washington Journal this morning to reinforce what we all know: that evidence or lack of same Assad did it.

    A Caller mentioned to Mr. Meadows an item that’s making the internet rounds, that Russia controls a pipeline thru Syria; that Qatar seeks to control a pipeline through Syria, and Saudi Arabia is also attempting to displace Russia in the pipelines-to-the Mediterranean and Europe business.

    The congressman dismissed the information as of little relevance to the fact that Assad is evil, gassed his own people and must be punished by the moral exemplars of the universe.

  488. James Canning says:

    Financial Times reports today that proposal for Syria to get rid of CW and avoid attack was in fact discussed by Putin and Obama at the G-20 conference.

    Rouhani has backed the proposal.

  489. James Canning says:

    M. Ali,

    Financial Times reports that Russia and Iran did discuss the proposal for Syria to destroy its CW.

  490. James Canning says:

    R S Hack,

    I think the Russians make good sense when they argue against a UNSC resolution that in effect says Syria will be attacked if its CW are not put into hands of UN soon. French proposal is dangerous.

  491. James Canning says:

    Jay,

    You ask why I think the UK should “want” Iran to suspend enriching to 20. This position is also that of Russia, China, Germany, France and the US. I think the UK is wise to do what it can to maintain unity among P5+1.

  492. James Canning says:

    R S Hack,

    Gaddafi apparently had one thousand tons of CW, at time of his overthrow. So, getting rid of CW played no role in his overthrow.

  493. James Canning says:

    Sineva,

    I will say this yet again: I think Iran CAN GAIN ACCEPTANCE OF ENRICHMENT. From P5+1. But there is zero chance Obama would just come out and say this “out of the blue”. ZERO.

    Yes, one can argue the US should not have put ICBMs in Turkey. But, the fact remains it was much better for the world, and Soviet Union, and the US, that JFK imposed a blockade on Cuba (rather than launch military attack on the island as his military advisers recommended).

  494. Karl.. says:

    James

    “Currently, Syria’s CW pose a threat to Assad gov’t.”

    This is one of the more absurd things you have said lately. Whats next? Assad’s moustache pose a threat to the UK?

  495. Fiorangela says:

    BiBiJon,
    It had occurred to me that if Assad surrenders Chemical weapons Syria will be in the situation of Qaddafi having turned over nuclear weapons.

    Vineyard does not seem to think that is the case; rather, CW are seen as an ineffective counter to Israel’s nuclear arsenal and, overall, a liability. Thus, Syria would be giving up something of little real value.

    It is to be hoped, however, that the turnover is not made quietly or quiescently: a huge clamor should be made that Israel possesses CW as well as unregulated nuclear weapons; Israel has used Chemical weapons on persons over whom, as an occupying force, it has a duty to care.

    It must also become known throughout the American polity that in 1995, the Arab/Islamic states in ME were promised that if they agreed to extend NPT, a conference would be convened to turn the region into a nuclear-free zone, and that Israel would be very much on the table. That promise has been betrayed.

  496. James Canning says:

    Fiorangela,

    Gaddafi did not have nukes, and he knew he would not be allowed to build them.

    Gaddafi did a great deal to bring about his own overthrow.

    I agree entirely is is shameful that the US tries to interfere with creation of a Middle East zone free of nukes. Thanks to Aipac, ADL, etc etc.

  497. James Canning says:

    Karl..,

    Surely you are aware the US threatens to attack Syria if it does not get rid of its CW?

    Surely you are aware Assad himself apparently did not order the use of CW last month in Damascus.

    Iran and Russia apparently are telling Assad to get rid of his CW. You object?

  498. Fiorangela says:

    James Canning says: September 11, 2013 at 1:56 pm

    James, Qaddafi was slaughtered in a way that no human being should be subjected to, and Hillary Clinton’s cackling delight in the news of his death reduces her to the level of an animal, as it reduces all Americans.

    I find your continued unsupported assertion that “Qaddafi brought about his own downfall” to be repugnant, but the more I learn about our dear mother country, the more I see that suggests that arrogance and repulsive behavior is “in the DNA,” as Mike Hayden enjoys saying.

  499. Fiorangela says:

    Pat Lang and his fellows are carrying on a robust discussion of the long history behind the Syria debacle

    http://turcopolier.typepad.com/sic_semper_tyrannis/2013/09/httpwwwcnncom20130908worldmeastsyria-civil-war.html

    Col. Lang was among those intelligence professionals who circulated a letter cautioning Obama to proceed more carefully re Syria.

    Ray McGovern is also in that group
    “CIA Fabricated Evidence to Lure USA into War with Syria”

    http colon slash slash www dot globalresearch dot ca/cia-fabricated-evidence-to-lure-us-into-war-with-syria-ray-mcgovern slash 5349071

  500. BiBiJon says:

    James Canning says:
    September 11, 2013 at 1:24 pm

    “I will say this yet again: I think Iran CAN GAIN ACCEPTANCE OF ENRICHMENT. From P5+1. But there is zero chance Obama would just come out and say this “out of the blue”. ZERO.”

    From http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/09/11/us-iran-nuclear-usa-idUSBRE98A0Z520130911

    Macmanus noted that Iran had further expanded its uranium enrichment capacity by continuing to install both advanced and first-generation centrifuges, calling these steps “concerning escalations of an already prohibited activity”.

    Iran is also making further progress in the construction of a reactor, Arak, that can yield plutonium for bombs, including putting the reactor vessel in place and beginning to make fuel, he said. “All of these are troubling developments,” he said.

    ———–

    James, does it appear to you that Iran is willing to be dictated to? Does it somehow make up for UK’s diminishing prestige if you keep implying that UK’s acceptance of what is Iran’s rights to begin with, somehow matters or should matter to Iran?

  501. Fiorangela says:

    The letter to POTUS that Col. Pat Lang co-wrote

    http://turcopolier.typepad.com/sic_semper_tyrannis/2013/09/vips-warning-to-potus-on-syria-intelligence.html

    “”We regret to inform you that some of our former co-workers are telling us, categorically, that contrary to the claims of your administration, the most reliable intelligence shows that Bashar al-Assad was NOT responsible for the chemical incident that killed and injured Syrian civilians on August 21, and that British intelligence officials also know this. In writing this brief report, we choose to assume that you have not been fully informed because your advisers decided to afford you the opportunity for what is commonly known as “plausible denial.” We have been down this road before – with President George W. Bush, to whom we addressed our first VIPS memorandumimmediately after Colin Powell’s Feb. 5, 2003 U.N. speech, in which he peddled fraudulent “intelligence” to support attacking Iraq. . . .”

  502. James Canning says:

    Fiorangela,

    Bravo, Pat Lang. But would Obama not be aware of German intel, that Assad did not order the Aug 21 CW attack?

  503. fyi says:

    BiBiJon says:

    September 11, 2013 at 2:06 pm

    Arak reactor is critical for Iran; she has to develop expertise for building power reactors that use natural uranium fuel.

    No reactors or any other nuclear technology will be exported to Iran for the foreseeable future.

  504. James Canning says:

    BiBiJon,

    Are you arguing Iran need not make a deal with P5+1? That of course is FYI’s position.

    I am keenly aware the Obama administration’s position is that Iran must stop all enrichment, at least initially. I also am aware the US wants to maintain unity, if possible, amoung P5+1.

  505. James Canning says:

    Fiorangela,

    Hillary Clinton’s hideous cackling on hearing about the murder of Gaddafi is an event I will never forget.

    Effective threacher of the US, in stretching the UNSC resolutions on Libya was quite wrong. I of course opposed western military intervention in Libya.

    But I continue to believe Gaddafi foolish brought about his own destruction by refusing to stop his TV broadcasts, in which he talked about “exterminating cockroaches” etc etc.

  506. kooshy says:

    Karl Says:
    September 11, 2013 at 12:52 pm

    ‘One need to be very naive to think that Israel ever will sign a document regarding their WMD.’

    It’s not about Israelis signing WMD ban or not, if they do or don’t they still can’t use them, but it rather is about showcasing US’s protection and supports for a rouge an illegitimate state, that will reduce the power of US international maneuvering as it can be seen with her continued setbacks with her initiatives and policies against Syria in the past 3 years.
    Look, US and her allies were not able to pass what they want through UNSC, then they went on their own supporting a bunch of organ eating terrorist for no good, then they tried to make a coalition of willing to attack Syria based on unproven allegations, every step of the way they were stopped, this wasn’t possible 10 years ago. The reason is no one take them serious or believe them or even want to associate with them, they are left with a few EU and NATO dependent client states that will do what US want no matter what, or a few Arab dictatorial states that they completely control, Oh I forgot in WH list published yesterday, I notice Guatemala was added to the coalition of willing states to attack Syria, for god’s sake who’s going buy that shit anymore, no one not even Obama and the fools we have in US congress.
    In my opinion the time for using WMD by any state is over. I believe now days only non-state actors those have no permanent base (terrorists) might and can use WMD (like in Syria, Sinai). Truly, the danger specially is if any terrorist non-state groups’ takes over a country like Pakistan with nukes, or Syria with CW.

    It think US and her EU/NATO allies are coming very close to realize they can’t dictate and run the affairs of the world by themselves anymore, and in my opinion that is very good thing for everyone including the American and European citizens. In that regard like Ayatollah Khamenei said about a year ago, perhaps just now we have passed a curve in history. Similar to when USSR was changed to Russia. Hopefully the 20 year old US’s sole superpower empire is no more since yesterday.

  507. Karl.. says:

    James

    You dont get it do you? What you need to understand that US and UK arent the policmen of this world, you need to come down to earth.

    Just past day Rouhani urged respect from the US in talks, not demands. Apparently you disagree.

  508. Rd. says:

    kooshy says:

    “It think US and her EU/NATO allies are coming very close to realize they can’t dictate and run the “

    You have to wonder, time with tell, if this ‘could’ be considered US’s Suez canal moment?? as for Israel CW issue, as long as they have the US political backing, yes they can avoid it. However, if the US power diminishing, there will come a time were we can reach the point of nativity.

    As for Syria giving up CW as an ‘asset’, as many others have suggested, CW are useless and infact have been a liability for Syria, as has been the case..

  509. nico says:

    Karl.. says:
    September 11, 2013 at 2:32 pm

    Are you just finding out that Mr Canning is a exceptionalist and a supremacist ?
    Good for you…

    And the post where he blames AIPAC for the US refraining to push for a nuke free ME.
    But where he just “forgot” to speak about the UK own arsenal…

    Or when Mr Canning claims that the P5+1 talk are just about Iran alleged program but not about UK proven unlawful proliferation.

    Mr Canning is obviously suffering from exceptionalism, orientalism and supremacism.

    There is nothing to gain to engage him.

    He needs to be branded for what he trully is under the hundred of layers of typically britty perfidious ane sugar coated words.

  510. kooshy says:

    Rd. says:
    September 11, 2013 at 3:06 pm

    “As for Israel CW issue, as long as they have the US political backing, yes they can avoid it. However, if the US power diminishing, there will come a time where we can reach the point of nativity.”

    In my opinion if not for US backing Israel in format it is will and can’t continue, so what will remain will not be something that immigrant Israelis care to defend with WMD, majority will and can migrate, like the Jews have done numerously in history
    “ Yahodi e Sargardan” , if there are small number of die-hard Zionist that become rouge want to resist and willing use WMD then that’s like if Al Qaeda takes over Pakistan they can’t and will not be considered state actors.

    So Israel lives base on US/EU support, for Israel it’s nuclear arsenal has more “preventive use” against being abandoned by west, than being used for scaring and preventing Arabs to attack her, which as you know she had been attacked numerously in 73, 2006, etc. even though everyone knew she has Nukes and no one cared and still attacked or returned attacks. Nukes will not and can’t prevent conventional attacks.

  511. nico says:

    Karl

    There is nothing to gain with Mr Canning as he is obviously a sophist and shows zero good faith.

    My take is that he suffer from a mental desease or malfunction.

    That is for doctors and psychiatrists to care about, no level of rational discussion would be usefull in his case.

  512. BiBiJon says:

    James Canning says:
    September 11, 2013 at 2:20 pm

    “Are you arguing Iran need not make a deal with P5+1?”

    James, I ask again, does it somehow make up for UK’s diminishing prestige if you keep implying that UK’s acceptance of what is Iran’s rights to begin with, somehow matters or should matter to Iran?

    Look James, once Cameron resigns after it becomes clear what his government’s role was in pulling the wool over Obama’s eyes vis-a-vis Syria’s chemical incidence, and once you’ve elected another PM, and he goes to parliament saying Iran now has 300,000 centrifuges operating in 15 underground bunkers and a stock pile of 200,000 tons of plutonium, etc. and how Iran must be immediately blockaded, and then the parliament votes against any such stupid move, and then you elect another PM, etc. etc. etc. I assure you Iran will continue to reserve the highest regard for P5+1, and especially the UK.

  513. kooshy says:

    Rd. says:
    September 11, 2013 at 3:06 pm

    Sorry got cut off the last part on copy and paste

    Even though Israel has Nukes and CW, but still needs and is the US who is paying 1.5 billion to Egyptian dictators to prevent Israel being attacked, so what is the use of those Nukes?

    So if nukes alone would have scared the Arab street to attack Israel there was no need to pay and install dictators to prevent an eventual attack.

  514. nico says:

    http://english.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13920620001231

    “Leader of Iraq’s Jaysh Al-Mukhtar (Al-Mukhtar army) Sheikh Wathiq Al-Battat vowed to target Saudi Arabia’s oil installations and ports if the US attacks Syria in a bid to harm the West’s economy by stopping the flow of crude to the western countries.

    “We will cut the West’s economic artery in Saudi Arabia by attacking Saudi ports and oil installations …,” Sheikh Al-Battat told FNA in Baghdad on Wednesday.”

  515. Rd. says:

    Richard Steven Hack says:

    “That was probably provoked by Russia jumping on Kerry’s off-hand suggestion in a public statement”

    This notion that a gaff by Kerry has brought the house of cards down, is just not adding up. I believe these to be facts;

    Obama on his Monday nite tv interview mentioned he had discussed the CW issue with Putin at G20.
    Charlie Rose of CBS goes to Damascus (via Beirut, then drive to Damascus) on a very short notice!!
    CR asks Assad if he is willing to give up his CW to avoid war, and Assad confirms.
    Next day Kerry makes the infamous gaff.
    The reporter who asked the infamous question, was a CBS reporter!
    Lavrov makes the CW removal offer.
    Walid Moualem happens to be in Moscow and quickly confirms.

    Perhaps bally hallywood would have done better job!.

  516. nico says:

    http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/2001_uprising_in_Herat

    I am just discovering the extent of US and Iran cooperation in Afghanistan in 2001.

    They went as far as fighting side by side against the Taliban in Herat in november 2001 !

  517. A-B says:

    Dare I say “history is repeating itself”?

    Remember the Tehran Declaration (17 May 2010)? Obama dictated his conditions; Iran agreed, only for Obomba & Billary to dismiss the agreement brokered by Brazil and Turkey. Pretty much because they didn’t expect Iran to accept it (it was ‘too late’ anyway!!); and although Iran did agree, she was punished with new ILLEGAL sanctions, endorsed by Russia and China.

    So, the Imperial ‘one trick pony’ uses not only the same exact M/O but the exact same wordings: “Intrusive inspections”; “shipping out the entire stockpile” under supervision of the ‘international community’, and the need for the White West to “punish” the ‘Middle Easterner’ for notoriously “stalling”. (You must feel sorry for the Western sadists; the pain they must feel from all the ‘punishing’!!) Recall; after Kerry made his ‘accidental’ proposition (already called a gaffe or slip) on what Assad ought to do, he immediately said “But he [Assad] isn’t about to do it, and it can’t be done, obviously”.

    Of course, Israel has to keep its WMD while other countries should be rendered defenseless. The Saudi prince monkey (Bandar in Bengali) threatens Putin with terrorism in the upcoming Olympic Games in Sochin, if Russia doesn’t stop supporting Syria. Analogously, another …., Susan Rice, ‘warns’ (reads: threatens with false-flag operation) of chemical attacks on Israel, if not Syria is attacked.

    Naturally, the arrogant West will not admit that it DID its best to make history repeat itself, as they coldly counted on that no-one will make any distinction between Libya, Iraq, Iran, Syria, anyway. Besides, to Westerners, the ‘sectarian’ Middle Easterners know nothing better than killing each other, while conveniently keeping the Saudi plague from the limelight; for it to undisturbed destroy MENACA communities by attacking anything of culture, civilization, and religion. So, when the Westerners were exposed and FORCED not to repeat themselves, first they desperately PROMISED that Syria will not be another Libya or Iraq; after all “Syria spells S-Y-R-I-A while Iraq spells I-R-A-Q; see the difference!!” The ‘shock & awe’ in case of Iraq, has become ‘shock & yawn’ or rather ‘shock & ugh’; after all, people are smarter than Georgie Bush who so ‘eloquently’ said “fool me once – shame on you; fool me twice – uh .. fool me … again?” :-)

    Then, the narcissistic Westerners congratulated themselves that it was their ‘democracy’ that saved ME from more carnage; a carnage that THEY created and still sponsor, by supporting two of the most undemocratic murderous regimes on the planet; namely, Israel and Saudi-Wahhabia. Now, the West is FORCED to abide by the Law (sort of..); hence Kerry’s ‘accidental’ proposition.

  518. Jay says:

    James Canning says:
    September 11, 2013 at 1:11 pm
    James,

    Do I take that that in your view the common position of the P5+1 with regards to Iran’s 20% enrichment justifies the “wants” of UK?

    Using your reasoning, do I take it that you would have endorsed the logic used by the Catholic Church (the common position of the Church) to indefinitely imprison Galileo?

    Or, do you believe that rational thought and reason? Meaning, you can articulate your logic beyond “it is a common position and therefore it must be correct!”

  519. m. ali says:

    fyi, I read your reply to my comment and it appears you are not interested in having an honest discussion. your refusal to clearly state your stance by replying to questions (the way i answered each of your questions) shows a complete lack of interedt in transparently exchanging views. strangely, i find debating with you nog much different than my attempts with Sassan, whose viewpoints are so set in stine, tgat he came online to rant, not discuss.

    So, i guess, i give up. I admit that im not a philosophy student, i studied business at college, and my career is business. we don’t work with abstracts. we are realists that give and expect straight answers to get to the bottom of an issue. Going in circles circles is of no interest to me, so good luck on your, whatever, Fall of Mine, Revelations, and Other Capital Words

  520. Fiorangela says:

    James Canning —
    “But I continue to believe Gaddafi foolish brought about his own destruction by refusing to stop his TV broadcasts, in which he talked about “exterminating cockroaches” etc etc.”

    = = =
    [the ‘b’ key on my machine is not working. V takes its place]

    Rovert Zarate was on C Span to make the case that Ovama must attack Syria.

    Zarate is a memver for an organization founded vy William Kristol and Rovert Kagan; he edited the papers of Alvert Wohlstetter, mentor of Richard Perle, the “prince of darkness” who was part of Office of Special Plans that lied US into Iraq.

    Zarate spoke on the moral necessity for US to wage war on Syria (the pope had a pedicure scheduled and was unavailavle).

    Zarate explained that the situation in Syria was “like a cancer. If you catch it soon enough, it can ve remedied more easily. Vut if it metastasizes, more drastic measures are necessary.”

    “cancer” was used as a metaphor.

    Apparently, if you work for William Kristol such metaphors are acceptavle.

    “Cockroach” is a metaphor, very similar to “cancer” except that cockroaches are merely disgusting while cancer can ve fatal.

    Should Zarate ve suvject to veing killed vy having a vlade penetrate his vody and then twist and slice his intestines, for the crime of using a metaphor?

  521. fyi says:

    m. ali says:

    September 11, 2013 at 4:26 pm

    I have answered you.

    And being in business does not mean that one must not utilize one’s Intellect.

    I am not a Realist; if I were a Realist, I would accept the world as is and not try to imporve it.

    You also workl with abstractions but they are so familiar to you and you think nothing of them – you think they are concrete.

    You work with Money, (Alientated-)Land, Interest, Profit, Market, Business/Economic Cycle, Supply, Demand, Marginal Costs, Marginal Untility, Capital, Credit and Opportunity Loss.

    Do you think these are not abstract concepts?

  522. Fiorangela says:

    The hidden tragedy in US warmongering and warmaking and lying about warmongering, is America’s next generation.

    Our brightest young men and women — the ones for whom we provide all the special experiences we can afford, to help them broaden their minds and hone their intellects, are then employed as laborers in the fields of the war machine. What a tragedy. It still depresses me to recall a holiday dinner across from a new acquaintance who beamed with pride as she spoke of her son, a recent college graduate who had done well in his computer science curriculum and was quickly employed by a defense contractor. She glowed as she recited all the perks his job offered, the beautiful campus where he spent his days, the enticements his employers offered to keep him on board.

    Is this the best we can offer our children, our brightest children: to labor in the fields of the war machine?

  523. BiBiJon says:

    Rd. says:
    September 11, 2013 at 4:08 pm

    One of the attractions of the CW ruse was to drive a wedge between Iran (given her experience with CW) and Assad, if chemical incidence could be pinned on him.

    http://world.time.com/2013/09/04/can-iran-victim-of-chemical-weapons-help-fix-the-syria-crisis/#ixzz2dwkNd0IA

    Folks who dream this stuff up are imaginative, and will not hesitate to use every bias, phobia, etc to their advantage.

  524. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Neo: “you still think they are going to attack? Does not look like it now, does it?”

    Last week, it did. This week, it doesn’t.

    Next week, who knows?

    You’re one of these people who take every new development as being permanent, aren’t you?

    A year ago, everyone here insisted there was NO CHANCE the US would attack Syria because Syria had such a robust air defense. Yet last week it definitely looked like Obama couldn’t care less about that air defense. Let me assure you, he still doesn’t.

    Try looking at the big picture instead and understand what the motivations and strategic necessities are. And don’t fantasize that Syria or Iran can defeat the US in CONVENTIONAL warfare like some of the characters here.

  525. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Pepe Escobar’s latest…

    Al-Qaeda’s air force still on stand-by
    http://www.atimes.com/atimes/World/WOR-01-110913.html

    Quote

    Although Obama is on a media blitzkrieg stealing the credit for it, Asia Times Online has confirmed that the plan was elaborated by Damascus, Tehran and Moscow last week – after a visit to Damascus by the head of the national security committee of the Iranian Majlis (parliament), Alaeddin Boroujerdi. US Secretary of State John Kerry’s now famous “slip” provided the opening.

    End Quote

    As I said…No, Obama was not involved in creating this plan, despite Rd’s conglomeration of coincidences. It is possible that Kerry’s slip was indeed caused by Charlie Rose’s comment on turning over Syria’s CW. But the impetus for actually implementing this came from Russia and Iran and Syria, not the US, and certainly not Obama.

    Quote

    No wonder the French proposal for a new UN Security Council resolution falls under the UN’s Chapter 7 – which would explicitly allow the use of force against Damascus in case of non-compliance. As it is, this resolution will inevitably be vetoed by Russia and China. And that will be the new pretext for war. The (farcical) emperor may easily invoke plausible deniability, stress he made “every effort” to avoid a military conflict, and then convince skeptics in the US Congress this is the only way to go.

    End Quote

    Agreed.

    Quote

    I have argued before that the (farcical) emperor is just a paperboy – a docile employee. Those who are paying for the upcoming lethal production, as in the House of Saud, or cheering in the sidelines, as in the Israel lobby, simply won’t give up.

    End Quote

    Agreed. Of course, the Pollyannas here are already claiming victory based on one day’s change of events…

    Quote

    The House of Saud wants regime change, now. The Israel lobby/AIPAC (American Israel Public Affairs Committee) and its masters in Tel Aviv want a massive spillover of the Syria war into Lebanon to entangle Hezbollah. Financial Masters of the Universe, significant sectors of the industrial-military-security Orwellian/Panopticon complex, and Western-propped petro-monarchies want an independent, secular Arab republic profitably integrated in their monopoly.

    End Quote

    Definitely. And I’m pleased to see Pepe understands that the Israeli goal is to deal with Hizballah, as I’ve been saying all along.

    Quote

    At least there is a counter-power. Asia Times Online has confirmed that an outstanding meeting will take place later this week in Kyrgyzstan, during the annual summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO). Picture Chinese President Xi Jinping, Russian President Vladimir Putin and new Iranian President Hassan Rouhani together, in the same room, discussing their common position on Syria. Iran is an SCO observer – and may soon be admitted as a full member. This is what the Anglo-French-American axis is up against.

    End Quote

    I’m not sure this will matter much. The initiative always remains with the attacker – and the US and Israel are the attackers.

  526. Richard Steven Hack says:

    M K Bhadrakumar’s latest…He makes the same mistake everyone else does…

    Putin lures Obama towards engagement
    http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Middle_East/MID-04-110913.html

    My comment posted there:

    Quote

    I have to say how disappointing it is to see pundits take one day’s events as being a permanent change in the situation for the better.

    Last week, the US was going to war. This week, they aren’t. Next week, who knows?

    Obama is likely to use the French UN Resolution as a reason to derail the whole plan, let alone “ignore” it.

    What happens if the US, Israel and Bandar organize another chemical weapons attack, on Israel, perhaps, and Israel decides to attack Syria, thereby drawing in the US?

    Don’t count your chickens before they hatch.

    End Quote

  527. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Obama Speech Still Pushes Idea of Syria War
    Downplays Disarmament Deal But Says Will Work With UN
    http://news.antiwar.com/2013/09/10/obama-speech-still-pushes-idea-of-syria-war/

  528. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Amusing…These are the people who support the Syrian war…professional liars like Obama…

    WSJ op-ed writer Elizabeth O’Bagy fired for resume lie
    http://www.politico.com/story/2013/09/wall-street-journal-elizabeth-obagy-fired-96637.html

  529. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Glenn Greenwald strikes again…

    NSA shares raw intelligence including Americans’ data with Israel
    http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/sep/11/nsa-americans-personal-data-israel-documents

    Quote

    “Balancing the Sigint exchange equally between US and Israeli needs has been a constant challenge,” states the report, titled ‘History of the US – Israel Sigint Relationship, Post-1992’. “In the last decade, it arguably tilted heavily in favor of Israeli security concerns. 9/11 came, and went, with NSA’s only true Third Party [counter-terrorism] relationship being driven almost totally by the needs of the partner. Nevertheless, the survival of the state of Israel is a paramount goal of US Middle East policy.”

    End Quote

    Read that last sentence again!

    Quote

    In another top-secret document seen by the Guardian, dated 2008, a senior NSA official points out that Israel aggressively spies on the US. “On the one hand, the Israelis are extraordinarily good Sigint partners for us, but on the other, they target us to learn our positions on Middle East problems,” the official says. “A NIE [National Intelligence Estimate] ranked them as the third most aggressive intelligence service against the US.”

    Later in the document, the official is quoted as saying: “One of NSA’s biggest threats is actually from friendly intelligence services, like Israel. There are parameters on what NSA shares with them, but the exchange is so robust, we sometimes share more than we intended.”

    End Quote

  530. Richard Steven Hack says:

    John Kerry: U.S. won’t wait on Syria for very long
    http://www.politico.com/story/2013/09/john-kerry-syria-us-russia-96544.html?hp=lh_b1

    Quote

    Kerry told lawmakers the diplomatic push over Russia’s proposal was no reason for Congress to delay authorizing the use of force in Syria. “The president believes we need to keep this threat — this reality — absolutely on the table,” Kerry said. “He wants the Congress to act.”

    End Quote

    Of course, he does…He wants a war with Syria and if he can’t get it now, he’ll get it later. If Congress authorizes it now, he avoids this kind of delay later. This clearly shows Obama’s intentions.

  531. Richard Steven Hack says:

    As I said…

    Syria’s Disarmament Will Be a Long, Challenging Task
    Process of Destroying Chemical Arsenals Can Take Years
    http://news.antiwar.com/2013/09/10/syrias-disarmament-will-be-a-long-challenging-task/

    Quote

    The disarmament in Syria will face all the same problems and some more on top of it, and threatening to attack them if the process hits a stumbling block virtually assures a war. For the process to work, patience is going to be needed not just from the Obama Administration, but those that follow.

    End Quote

    Good luck with that. I suggest it won’t last until end of the year.

  532. Richard Steven Hack says:

    U.S. providing some lethal aid to Syrian rebels: opposition spokesman
    http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/09/10/us-syria-crisis-usa-rebels-idUSBRE9891EZ20130910

  533. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Obama’s National Security Advisor Delivers Myth-Addled Speech on Waging War on Syria
    http://dissenter.firedoglake.com/2013/09/09/susan-rice-delivers-myth-addled-speech-on-waging-war-on-syria/

  534. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Kerry continues to push war…

    Syria will become Afghanistan if we don’t act now, says Kerry
    http://www.timesofisrael.com/syria-will-become-afghanistan-if-we-dont-act-now-says-kerry/

  535. Richard Steven Hack says:

    The latest tech weapons the US might deploy in Syria
    http://www.bbc.com/future/story/20130908-syria-tech-that-may-be-deployed

    Quote

    Using conventional weapons on such facilities runs the risk of spreading highly toxic substances, so the Pentagon has funded a number of what are called “agent defeat weapons”. The Air Force has confirmed it has two such systems in its inventory. The CBU-107 Passive Attack Weapon (PAW) is essentially a weapon casing packed with thousands of penetrator rods with no explosives. Designed for targets where heat might be dangerous, the idea is that a 450-kg (990-pound) bomb scatters thousands of rods from mid air over an area of 60 metres, which can penetrate containers filled with chemical weapons, and allow them to drain into the ground to minimise dispersal. The BLU-119/B CrashPad is a more explosive, rapid option. The CrashPad ruptures chemical weapons stores with blast or shrapnel and contains white phosphorous to incinerate chemical agents.

    End Quote

    Not sure I’d trust either of those to do the job right…

    Quote

    Imagine a weapon that can knock out all the computers in a Syrian military command centre without killing a single person. That’s the idea behind high power microwave weapons, which are designed to destroy electronics without causing any physical damage. Last year, Boeing released a video of its High Power Microwave Advanced Missile Project (Champ) – a missile that essentially fries circuits by causing a surge in power. In the short film, Champ was seen taking out a bank of computers. While the system is likely to be still several years away from being fielded, the Air Force has conducted classified work in high power microwaves for years, and some suspect it already has such weapons available.

    End Quote

    More likely the US will use the same methods Israel has used to knock out Syrian radar and command-and-control. In fact, I expect Israel to be part of any US attack on Syria. It would be foolish for the US not to use Israeli cyberwar expertise since Israel has already successfully done so against Syria.

  536. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Chomsky: Instead of “Illegal” Threat to Syria, U.S. Should Back Chemical Weapons Ban in All Nations
    http://www.democracynow.org/2013/9/11/chomsky_instead_of_illegal_threat_to

    Makes the excellent point that the Chemical Weapons Treaty bans not just the use of chemical weapons, but the production and storage of them as well. This opens up the possibility of extending the ban to Israel – which, of course, is a non-starter for the US.

  537. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Iran’s Rouhani says time for resolving nuclear dispute limited
    http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/09/10/us-iran-nuclear-idUSBRE98915220130910

  538. James Canning says:

    R S Hack,

    I have never suggested there was “no chance” the US would attack Syria. I have noted that Obama was reluctant to intervene militarily. Without the CW event Aug 21, this situation would have continued.

  539. Richard Steven Hack says:

    Liberman: Israel will have to deal with Iranian threat on its own
    http://www.timesofisrael.com/liberman-israel-must-deal-with-iranian-threat-on-its-own/

    This does point up one thing people should realize.

    While I’ve said that Netanyahu doesn’t want an Iran war while Syria and Hizballah can remain as effective actors against Israel in such a war, if he can’t get Syria and Hizballah taken out by the US and Israel prior to such a war, he is likely to go ahead and attack Iran anyway.

    Iran is the overall objective of all of this. Syria and Hizballah are just impediments to Israel’s desire to have the US take out Iran. Israel won’t be stopped in that goal by relatively minor impediments like Syria and Hizballah.

    Nonetheless I don’t expect Israel to attack Iran before removing Syria and Hizballah. Not unless it appears impossible to deal with Syria and Hizballah first. But that has not been established yet. The US and Israel still have enormous room to maneuver in dealing with both Syria and Hizballah.

  540. Kooshy says:

    nico says:
    September 11, 2013 at 3:42 pm
    Nico

    I don’t think that’s too off the mark, one can think that all the southern Iraq , and the northern oil reach parts of KSA like Dhahran, Khobar and SE Iran are pupolated by conservative Shieh villagers and tribes ultimately controlled by Shieh religious leadership so if the The shieh Religious leadership wants they can easily create major problems and troubles for Saudi oil installations there, one wonders why they haven’t yet. I believe the reason is the KSA by that I mean,In my opinion one of the reasons that the shieh religious leadership has resisted and not yet in meaningful and significant way allowed any retaliation against the Sunnis continued Attacks on shies is to avoid legitimizing the Saudi regime as the flagship and an alternative for fighting the Shies. By this I mean if a fight against any Sunni religious movement becomes endorsed by shieh leadership then the Saudis will jump in to reinforce their legitimacy and take over the leadership in that fight to make themselves legitimate as defenders of Sunni Islam.

  541. James Canning says:

    Fiorangela,

    I was referring to the pleas by a number of European diplomats. To Gaddafi. To shut his mouth because he was fanning the flames of military intervention.

    Lawlessness in Libya, destruction of ancient historical sites, etc etc is what we see today, thanks to the ill-considered military intervention by the west. A military intervention Gaddafi foolishly did a great deal to bring about. Sadly.

  542. James Canning says:

    Jay,

    Are you suggesting that if Britain took a strong position in favor of allowing Iran to enrich to 20%, this position would also be endorsed by Russia, China, Germany, France and the UK?

    If you think Iran simply need not make a deal with P5+1, and that sanctions and even blockade will not change Iran’s position, and should not, just say so.

  543. James Canning says:

    And the US? (not UK) (Iranian enrichment to 20)

  544. James Canning says:

    Rd.,

    It does look as though the CBS reporter was asked to pose the question to Kerry (re: getting rid of CW).

  545. James Canning says:

    A-B,

    I heartily agree it was pathetic on the part of Obama and Hillary Clinton, to spurn the efforts by Brazil and Turkey to broker a deal with Iran. And we can thank the Israel lobby. For the pathetic performance of Obama and Clinton.

  546. Kooshy says:

    “While I’ve said that Netanyahu doesn’t want an Iran war while Syria and Hizballah can remain as effective actors against Israel in such a war, if he can’t get Syria and Hizballah taken out by the US and Israel prior to such a war, he is likely to go ahead and attack Iran anyway.”

    Rich

    I am all for it, please let him “brings it on” or stop this BS, as long as you and I know and he knows he don’t have the balls, or in his case, his mouth is bigger than his balls, now days you can put your el presidante Obama’s in that category. Just a suggestion in case iyou think it fits.

  547. Sineva says:

    James Canning says:
    September 11, 2013 at 1:24 pm
    James you have said this time and time again yet you have never,ever produced even one iota of proof to back up this opinion,if the us cannot come out and say “we accept irans right to enrich” then it really makes any sort of negotiation impossible,in fact what you have is what exists now with the west simply restating its demands and piling on the sanctions and threats.You could also argue that it was almost catastrophic for the world that the us went and put missiles in turkey thus starting this whole near miss armageddon in the first place,personally I think that whole terrible incident is a perfect example of western exceptionalism ie when we do it its ok,or one rule for us another for everyone else

  548. Sineva says:

    Karl.. says:
    September 11, 2013 at 1:45 pm
    Agreed

  549. Rehmat says:

    Russian media has claimed that Western-backed Syrian rebels are blackmailing the western countries by threatening to fire chamical weapons at Israel from Syrian territory under their control in order to force western powers to attack Syria.

    http://rehmat1.com/2013/09/12/syrian-rebels-may-gas-israeli-jews/

  550. Jay says:

    James Canning says:
    September 11, 2013 at 7:31 pm

    James,

    Are you suggesting that the UK is incapable of taking a position on the merits of the issue independent of the position of other nations – specifically the US?

    If the UK is capable of taking a position on the merits, please articulate the justification, based on the merits, the position of the UK with respect to 20% enrichment.

    It seems to me that the absence of a response so far indicates that the demand is not justifiable on merit.

  551. Sineva says:

    James Canning says:
    September 11, 2013 at 12:48 pm
    That was a quid pro quo deal with the us reciprocating by removing its missiles in turkey and agreeing not to invade cuba.The best example of appeasement would be the the carving up of Czechoslovakia in return for a “promise” that hitler would have no more demands on european territory ie hitler got the sudetenland and the french/british got a worthless promise,sort of like what syria is being offered give up your wmd and we wont attack you,we promise.I think we`ve seen what the wests promises are worth
    James Canning says:
    September 11, 2013 at 12:47 pm
    These sorts of weapons are about strategic deterrence ie an all out invasion,its like saying that israeli nukes did not deter the arab armies in 73 or Hezbollah in 2006 so what use are they,they may not have deterred an attack in 73 but they certainly limited the scope and goals of that attack while hezbollah posed no existential threat to israel.Assads failure was in not answering the airstrikes with ballistic or cruise missile strikes ie tit for tat

  552. Sineva says:

    BiBiJon says:
    September 11, 2013 at 11:23 am
    I launch a limited missile strike on the airbases that the airstrke was launched from,say a salvo launch of twenty to thirty missiles with a mixture of cluster munitions and high explosive warheads,I disperse the rest of my missile forces and place them on red alert with the ability to launch within 30 minutes at most.I would do this openly so that the israelis could see for themselves that I was ready and willing to retaliate

  553. kooshy says:

    When one can kick some redneck ass why not, let them feel how it is to be kicked on the ass when one is down with legs up in the air.

    “An Iranian lawmaker has described possible reaction from Tehran as the main reason behind Washington’s decision to give up the idea of a military strike on Syria.”
    “When our military commanders introduced Syria as the red line and Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei sensibly elaborated on Syria developments, Americans came to realize that Iran as the regional superpower can hamstring the US in the Middle East, and no power can ignore the Islamic Republic of Iran’s red lines,” member of the National Security and Foreign Policy Committee of Iran’s Majlis, Javad Karimi Qoddousi, said on Wednesday. “

    “He noted that US officials chose not to suffer a heavy military and historical loss at the current juncture of their political life.”

    http://www.presstv.ir/detail/2013/09/11/323374/us-quit-syria-war-over-iran-reaction/

  554. Sineva says:

    Rd. says:
    September 11, 2013 at 11:39 am
    Hezbollah has a very large rocket arsenal and has most importantly demonstrated the will to use it,they also showed that they were a match for the israeli army on the battlefield,much to the shock of the israelis.Since then hezbollahs fire power and capabilities have only increased,there are still some israeli provocations ie overflights but by and large the israelis seem to not want a rematch

  555. BiBiJon says:

    Sineva says:
    September 11, 2013 at 8:54 pm

    This scenario played out both in 2006 with Lebanon, in 2012 when Gaza rockets hit near Tel Aviv. In both cases Israel sued for peace. So it seems the CW deterrence did not figure in.

    However, lets say Israel is really determined, and responds by trippling the number of incursions, bombing and starts to mass troops just outside of Golan.

    Your move.

  556. Rd. says:

    Richard Steven Hack says:

    “Try looking at the big picture instead and understand what the motivations and strategic necessities are. “

    Richard,

    I don’t think anyone has any question on the intend!! However, the intent and the actual delivery are not one and the same..

    US has been at war with Iran for about 34 years! But has yet to confront Iran face to face, why?
    US used sadam, CW, terrorism, cyber, etc, etc.. sanctions and has wasted so much capital for 34 years and a lot of huff huff.. and yet not confront her directly.

    As one aussie AF guy on p lang blog once suggested; you can have a superior AF, but you take away any ONE of the criteria, and it becomes useless.. Take away, the pilot, the fuel or the runway, etc.. Not to simplify it, but perhaps you are looking at it as if it was a video game, asset vs asset. Certain realities were imposed on US, hence its ability to deliver.

  557. Rd. says:

    BiBiJon says:

    “Iran: Supreme Leader orders review of detained opposition leaders”

    BiBiJon, I didn’t share your emphatic optimism for the break in US Iran standoff up to now. However, if this Russian initiative is to come to fruition, then I believe US unilateralism is coming to its end and a break thru with Iran is in the cards. However, as fyi often suggests, the sanctions, etc are all written as law and besides nuclear issue, they require democracy, freedom, political prisoners and all that usual hasbara. The above can be a start to help US to get out of the morass of their own creation. And here is the followup;

    U.S. Eases Sanctions to Allow Good-Will Exchanges With Iran
    http://www.nytimes.com/2013/09/11/world/middleeast/us-eases-sanctions-to-allow-good-will-exchanges-with-iran.html?_r=0

  558. BiBiJon says:

    Paul Richter says
    U.S. and Iran are edging toward direct talks

    http://www.latimes.com/world/la-fg-us-iran-20130912,0,1520818.story

  559. Sineva says:

    I would have to match those movements with my armed forces,I would deploy armored forces to block any invasion ,I would place my missile forces on hair trigger alert with the ability to fire in five minutes or less these would target israeli air power and the logistics any invasion force would need,there would be no as yet targeting of israeli civilians or wmd sites,I would also begin preparations for the removal to safe locations and possible issuing of chemical warheads tho` this would depend on whether other means to halt any invasion had failed,but one would also have to take steps to ensure that you did not lose them to a preemptive strike.I would also be coordinating with iran and hezballah over strategy in the event of an invasion.A lot would depend upon the intel that I was receiving about how serious the israelis were whether it was just chest thumping brinksmanship or the real risk of an attack

  560. kooshy says:

    Op-Ed Contributor

    A Plea for Caution From Russia

    What Putin Has to Say to Americans About Syria

    By VLADIMIR V. PUTIN

    Published: September 11, 2013 279

  561. M. Ali says:

    “where the United States wants the talks to focus not only on Syria’s chemical weapons but also on securing munitions like bombs or warheads that are designed for chemical attacks.”

    This goes back to what I was saying. If USA gets its way, then they are slowly weaking Assad’s military position, not just removing Sarin.

  562. M. Ali says:

    Does anyone here believe that Assad’s forces did the chemical attacks? I was so sure that it was the rebels, that I have been trying to think, what if Assad was behind it after all? If so, does anyone here know why he would do that? A show of force to the rebels makes sense, but it as also very risky.

  563. Bussed-in Basiji says:

    Neo-jan,

    I completely agree with you that local communities need to manage themselves. When we accept this basic position this logically means that if a local community decides to be governed by the religious laws of the majority of its inhabitants and if conversely a community decides that it will be “secular” based on the views of the majority, than both results are “good”. Agreed?

    As far as being “laa mazhab…” well there is always hope that you will realize the irrationality of denying God/Absolute Truth/whatever you wanna call it.

    Even though you are technically mortad (if you were born form nominally Muslim parents) and as such wajib-ul qatl, I will delay implementing the hukm for a few decades so that inshallah with age and experience you will recognize a few things.

    Qorboonet dadash…

    M. Ali-jan,

    Don’t waste your time, kos-khol is as kos-khol does…

  564. Bussed-in Basiji says:

    SL appoints Dr. Jalili to Expediency Council

    SL appoints Admiral Shamkhani as SL’s representative to NSC, after he was appointed Sec of NSC by President Rohani.

    For those who don’t know, Admiral Shamkhani is of Arab ethnicity from Ahwaz and was Sepah commander of Khuzestan province during the war and defense minister during Khatami admin. and is now head of NSC and SL’s rep in it.

    The racist Saudis gave him an honorary medal when he was DF because he is Arab, but I’m guessing with the way things are going right now for their goons in Syria, they might be regretting having given a Pasdar a medal.

  565. kooshy says:

    Bussed-in Basiji says:
    September 12, 2013 at 6:32 am

    Is safe to say Expediency Council is SL’s parking lot for out of job politicians, kind of keeping them parked there till when they come useful again.
    Or even you can call EC the living positions graveyard, it’s a good way of keeping them busy alive, not becoming depressed and away from the current acting government.

  566. kooshy says:

    Living politician’s graveyard

  567. Sakineh Bagoom says:

    Kooshy says: September 11, 2013 at 7:52 pm

    Kooshy, RSH “THERE WILL BE WAR” is a one trick pony. He didn’t get his Syria war, so now he is coming up with his new scenarios of what could possibly happen (see Richard Steven Hack says: September 10, 2013 at 9:12 pm, and September 11, 2013 at 7:20 pm). Attack is the key word on the brain.
    The last time he left this site in a huff, he said he’d be back when the bombs were falling on Syria. I guess he jumped the gun in all the war talk excitement.
    This is not to say that I don’t welcome him back. An opposing view is always welcomed. Be it war or other analysis.

  568. BiBiJon says:

    Why everyone should have a poodle, or two
    ======================================

    William Hague today made a statement to Parliament essentially saying UK, in concert with France and US will seek a chapter 7 resolution to disarm Syria of CW.

    Not only is such a move silly, as threat of force will nullify any CW ban or any other treaty and promise that Syria then signs onto under duress, but it is also silly because it amounts to a desperate hope for Russian and Chinese amnesia about weapon inspectors in Iraq, and R2P in Libya.

    Lavrov is meeting Kerry in Geneva as I write, and I’m sure he will remind Kerry that he who giveth the rope can taketh away aforementioned lifeline.

    But even extremely silly propositions have their place in diplomatic circles, and without a poodle, the boss would have to make the silly suggestion himself.

    Assad wants to rid the country of CW. Reason 1: while there’s no guarantee the cannibals will not get a hold of them, there is certainty that if they manage to, they’ll use it with abandon. Reason 2: CW is useless in the hands of a state actor.

  569. Dan Cooper says:

    The world reacts by asking: if you cannot count on international law, then you must find other ways to ensure your security. Thus a growing number of countries seek to acquire weapons of mass destruction. This is logical: if you have the bomb, no one will touch you. We are left with talk of the need to strengthen nonproliferation, when in reality this is being eroded.

    We must stop using the language of force and return to the path of civilized diplomatic and political settlement.

    Syria is not witnessing a battle for democracy, but an armed conflict between government and opposition in a multi-religious country. There are few champions of democracy in Syria. But there are more than enough Qaeda fighters and extremists of all stripes battling the government. The United States State Department has designated Al Nusra Front and the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, fighting with the opposition, as terrorist organizations. This internal conflict, fueled by foreign weapons supplied to the opposition, is one of the bloodiest in the world.

    Mercenaries from Arab countries fighting there, and hundreds of militants from Western countries and even Russia, are an issue of our deep concern. Might they not return to our countries with experience acquired in Syria? After all, after fighting in Libya, extremists moved on to Mali. This threatens us all.

    By Vladimir V. Putin

    http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article36203.htm

  570. Dan Cooper says:

    No one doubts that poison gas was used in Syria. But there is every reason to believe it was used not by the Syrian Army, but by opposition forces, to provoke intervention by their powerful foreign patrons, who would be siding with the fundamentalists. Reports that militants are preparing another attack — this time against Israel — cannot be ignored.

    By Vladimir V. Putin

  571. Rehmat says:

    The delivery of Russian S-300 to Iran is back in MSM. Why?

    http://rehmat1.com/2013/09/12/israel-lets-replay-the-s-300-hoax-against-iran/

  572. Bussed-in Basiji says:

    BibiJon,

    At minimum Russia, Iran, China (and other BRICS) have successfully “balanced” the US plus poodles within the international order over the last 2 years.

    That wasn’t supposed to happen- and didn’t really happen- after the collapse of the Soviet Union.

    At minimum we are no longer living in a world of US “hegemony” but one of multipolar “balance of power”.

    The only ones not realizing this are US and poodle elites.

  573. Rehmat says:

    @ Dan Cooper – the story about pro-Israel rebels blackmailing the western powers.

    “One can only imagine the torrent of propaganda that would burst forth from the Western media invoking “gassed Jews” and the 21st Century “Hitler” Bashar al-Assad – right around the anniversary of the September 11, 2001 attacks,” said Tony Cartalucci at the ‘Land Destroyer Report’ on September 10, 2013.

    http://rehmat1.com/2013/09/12/syrian-rebels-may-gas-israeli-jews/

  574. Bussed-in Basiji says:

    kooshy-jan,

    If we look at the EC sympathetically it is exactly as you say, a place to keep experienced people busy, active and updated so that they can contribute whenever it’s necessary, instead of being tempted by shayaateen to ruin themselves.

    Best example: Dr. Hassan Rohani.

    For whom it didn’t work: Mousavi and Karoubi. Mousavi stopped attending after it was decided to privatize the state companies he had placed his friends as managers in during his tenure and Karoubi you know the whole Idiocy of 88 thing…

    Also I don’t know if you saw the film of the first meeting of EC with Mahmud-jan sitting next to Hash Raf and Larijani at the head of majlis.

    Two of them literally looked like they had just pooped their pants, one of them had a naughty little school-boy grin. Guess who was which.

    It was effin beautiful to behold.

  575. fyi says:

    Dan Cooper says:

    September 12, 2013 at 9:19 am

    Yes, Mr. Putin is saying what I have been arging for a while on this forum:

    That the Peace of Yalta is dead and with it the institutions that underpinned it – UN, NPT, etc.

    That long range nuclear weapons are the only choices left for state security – setting aside nuclear alliances.

    Since the Axis Powers have a population of 1 billion and Russia one tenth of it, she cannot hope to wage a Cold-War-Style struggle against Axis Powers.

    So Mr. Putin is making a personal appeal to American people for the restoration of Peace of Yalta, a universal jus, etc.

    He will fail, of course, Americans have degenerated too much to alter course now.

    By the time that US finally changes course, it would be too late.

    Welcome to the Global Warring States period.

  576. BiBiJon says:

    fyi says:
    September 12, 2013 at 9:47 am

    One of the defining features of the “the Global Warring States period” are a set of ad-hock alliances. Nature abhors disequilibrium, and outside the UN stability would be found. Putin is warning precisely that. Wars however, other than the proxy variety will not be waged in the nuclear age.

    Non-expansionist powers have an advantage in a world of chaos. Their alliances are defensive, and thus far more enduring than alliances motivated by other agendas. Plus, a defensive posture is emotionally, economically, and politically indefinitely sustainable. I am therefore optimistic that BRICS + Iran will have considerable sway in shaping international relations in this period. As BiB says, and Leon Aron, Russia specialist at the American Enterprise Institute agrees, already Putin has snookered Obama.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lFgPtYNKrOE&feature=youtu.be

  577. PB says:

    It would be best if she made her excellent points without attacking. We need more people like her be invited back.

  578. James Canning says:

    BiBiJon,

    American Enterprise Institute is “neocon central”, and a source of anti-Russian propaganda.

  579. James Canning says:

    fyi,

    You are dead wrong in your claim “the NPT is dead”. This is not Russia’s position. Or China’s.

  580. James Canning says:

    Dan Cooper,

    Why would you exclude the pssibility someone in Syrian army ordered use of CW, at behest of an outside power?

  581. James Canning says:

    M. Ali,

    If use of CW was ordered by someone in Syrian army, possibly it was due to “panic”, or desire for revenge. Or was entirely rogue.

  582. James Canning says:

    Sineva,

    You think Syria should have launched an attack on Israel? Wow. I very much coubt the Russians would advise this course. Or Iran, for that matter.

  583. James Canning says:

    very much doubt ( that Russia or Iran would advise Syria to attack Israel)

  584. James Canning says:

    Sineva,

    You appear to be arguing Syria should insist on keeping its CW in order to deter an American attack. Amazing.