Yesterday, Wikileaks released a barrage of alleged emails from Stratfor, a computer security/counterterrorism firm. They are dated as far back as July of 2004 and as recently as December of last year.
Perhaps the most significant, given the almost universal Republican campaign promise of “Bomb bomb bomb, bomb bomb Iran,” is the fact that there might be nothing left to bomb.
In November of last year, Israel launched a military strike against Iran’s Revolutionary Guards, who are in charge of guarding Iran’s missile program. Israeli Defense Minister, Ehud Barak lauded the strike.
One of the emails leaked by Wikileaks says,
I think this is a diversion. The Israelis already destroyed all the Iranian nuclear infrastructure on the ground weeks ago. The current “let’s bomb Iran” campaign was ordered by the EU leaders to divert the public attention from their at home
financial problems. It plays also well for the US since Pakistan, Russia and N. Korea are mentioned in the report.
Another email provides a possible motive for all the saber rattling: high oil prices, which could definitely be beneficial to Republicans come November.
I agree. The argument here is that the proponents of conventional war are ones that want the oil prices–but is it really that simple? What about other economic effects? For
Israel, by this argument, it doesn’t matter what method as long as it sets Iran back—-I agree with this. However, the confidence that this guy has does not show publicly. By that, I mean look at what Dagan was saying a year ago, and how quiet Israeli leaders have been. Suddenly they are really pushing the issue, and while Dagan isn’t it, his line is that conventional war would be a mistake, not that Iran doesn’t need to be dealt
with. I don’t really like trying to interpret public statements, but I think there is something here, and that’s why I keep pushing this.
Stratfor isn’t the only agency doubting the existence of Iran’s nuclear program. American spy agencies are finding little evidence. From the New York Times:
Recent assessments by American spy agencies are broadly consistent with a 2007 intelligence finding that concluded that Iran had abandoned its nuclear weapons program years earlier, according to current and former American officials. The officials said that assessment was largely reaffirmed in a 2010 National Intelligence Estimate, and that it remains the consensus view of America’s 16 intelligence agencies.
As you might recall, in 2002, during the buildup of the Iraq war, the Bush administration sold the war to the American people on the supposed “fact” that Iraq had weapons of mass destructions. It turns out that there were no such weapons and that the war was sold on a lie.
As you know, we did go to war. It cost us $802 billion, 100,000 American soldiers injured or dead and arguably, it put the country into the worst economic state since the Great Depression. The Republicans want to do it again, only this time with Iraq’s neighbor, Iran.
What is the motivation to go to war with Iran? During the George W. Bush administration, the word “neocon” was bandied about. In short, neocon refers to an ideology that is free market oriented, pro-Israel, imperialist and centered around the acquisition of oil. The Bush administration was full of neocons, including Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld, Paul Wolfowitz, Condoleezza Rice, John Bolton and others. Bush was a neocon, as are John McCain and Joe Lieberman.
Neocons are not socially conservative, but they have found that their agenda is an easier sell to social conservatives, who tend to be very pro-Israel, hence the two ideologies seeming to morph in the last decade.
Out of the current batch of GOP Presidential candidates, Newt Gingrich is probably most closely identified with the neocon movement, but with the exception of Ron Paul, they are all trumpeting the neocon “bomb Iran” mantra.
An argument can be made that it won’t matter which GOP candidate gets elected. On the surface, Romney, Gingrich and Santorum might be very different people, but modern Republican Presidents are nothing but figureheads. Their movements are being controlled by behind the scenes men like the Koch brothers and (zero tax) Grover Norquist, who told the CPAC convention that they were only looking for a President who could sign the legislation that was put in front of him, not a free thinker.
If a Republican wins, I have no doubt that we will go into another decade-long war that might actually bankrupt the country, even if it turns out that it’s true that Iran has no nuclear weapons. Of course, the financial collapse of the US would suit the neocons very well. Full privatization of all government services is toward the top of their agenda. There’s no better way to make that happen than to spend all of our taxpayer dollars in another futile war.
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