So anyway – the gist of the Iran propaganda goes something like this:
- Ahmadinejad gave a speech threatening to “wipe Israel off the map”.
- Iran supports insurgents in Iraq. , and this from the evil CFR.
- Iran is developing nuclear weapons to achieve #1.
- Iran is a sponsor of terrorist.
- The Muslim caliphate will take over the world (this is more of a meme than a published idea).
Clearly I have problems with the overall concept of sanctions and war. And to hear people like Rick Santorum spewing mind-dead garbage, like any of the items listed above, turns my stomach.
1) According to Juan Cole, and I’m using him as a source because I’ve heard/read a lot of his stuff before, and I believe his opinion is candid and honest: “…when I pointed out that Ahmadinejad had not in fact threatened to wipe Israel off the map, but had just quoted Ayatollah Khomeini to the effect that the ‘Zionist regime over Jerusalem’ must eventually ‘vanish from the page of time.’” That’s a BIG difference from “wiping off the map”. And if you don't like Mr. Cole, here's a similar translation by Arash Narouzi. "The Imam said this regime occupying Jerusalem must vanish from the page of time."
2) Then there’s Gareth Porter reporting on Iraq and Iran. That guy is good. While I’m sure that Iran (Iraq’s neighbor) has dogs in that fight, Porter says that the worst accusation that the US has against Iran, that they provide IEDs, is false.
But even if it were true, I’d think that Iran has a vested interest in what happens in Iraq. While they may not be responsible for many civilian deaths, there were plenty of soldiers on both sides who died in the Iran/Iraq wars. And it seems reasonable that they’d want to exercise what influence they have to ensure that such a thing doesn’t recur.
3) Again, I’ll use Gareth Porter, as he seems to know the most about what’s going on between Iraq and Iran. He says that the ‘evidence proving’ Iran is developing nuclear weapons is crap. They may be developing the weapons, but the ‘proof’ we and/or the IAEA has is crap.
And from the IAEA report (stress mine) :
52. While the Agency continues to verify the non-diversion of declared nuclear material at the nuclear facilities and LOFs declared by Iran under its Safeguards Agreement, as Iran is not providing the necessary cooperation, including by not implementing its Additional Protocol, the Agency is unable to provide credible assurance about the absence of undeclared nuclear material and activities in Iran, and therefore to conclude that all nuclear material in Iran is in peaceful activities.44) Proving or disproving an allegation of state sponsorship of terrorists is a difficult task. It’s much easier to dredge up the hostage crisis of the late ’70s and make new accusations, like the bastard CFR people did above. But here’s an article at antiwar.com by John Glaser about the hypocrisy of the accusation and another at ruthfullyyours.com (not a typo) which, while somewhat long, proved interesting.
5) If you are afraid of a Islamic Caliphate, I have no help for you. I hear that, contrary to appearances, the hijab is very comfortable.
Now even if all of the above were true, that Iran is developing a nuclear weapon to wipe Israel off the face of the Earth and then kill Americans in Iraq or wherever they find them, and then pay terrorists to come to the US and explode dirty bombs and the like, only to convert the remaining inhabitants to Islam, the question still remains: Do we have a right to kill them, if they haven’t tried it yet, nor prepared to do it, nor really even credibly threatened to do so? Iran is a signatory of the nuclear non-proliferation treaty, we are not. Iran has never nuked anybody, we have. Iran did not invade a country 6,000 miles away, we did. Iran is not responsible for a boat load of dead Iraqi civilians, we are. It seems a classic case of “And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother’s eye, but perceivest not the beam that is in thine own eye?” Luke 6:41
So, no matter what scare tactics are used by the pre-internet media (working as the government’s propaganda arm), I can find no justification for an attack on Iran. It truly is a shame we can’t just mind our own business.
And here’s a nice background piece at truthout.org.