Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Iran's Nuclear Theater diverts Attention away from Israel's nuclear arsenal

1. World events have taken an interesting turn recently, with the Goldstone report, which wreaked havoc in the beginning of the week being nearly completely overshadowed by Iran’s revelation of another nuclear facility, according to diplomats in Vienna on September 25.

2. The Iran nuclear threat - although theater is a more suitable term - was highlighted repeatedly, first by US President Barack Obama during a UN speech on September 23, then again by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu the next day. The latter came armed with maps and relentlessly provoked Holocaust memories, following the ever so predictable, albeit insensitive and deceptive pattern.

3. This charade was meant to distract from the nearly 600 page UN report, prepared by South Africa judge Richard Goldstone and others, dedicated mostly to Israeli war crimes in Gaza.

4. Confirming that Israel wantonly used weapons, including illegal weapons, against a defenseless civilian population in Gaza and going so far to say that Israel did not only commit war crimes, but indeed may have also committed crimes against humanity, the findings of the report were all set by the wayside. The report was utterly rebuked by Netanyahu and his ilk, arrogantly disregarded and shelved.

5. How ironic it is, and what a sweet-talker Netanyahu is, to successfully divert the worlds eye, ears and conscience away from what he has indeed done, to the dangerous notion of what another man with up until this point can only be branded for fiery speeches, could do some time in the future.

Author: Ramzy Baroud ( is an author and editor of

6. In his column for the New Statesman, John Pilger compares the current drum-beating for war against Iran, based on a fake "nuclear threat", with the manufacture of a sense of false crisis that led to invasion of Iraq and the deaths of 1.3 million people.

7. In 2001, the Observer in London published a series of reports that claimed an “Iraqi connection” to al-Qaeda, even describing the base in Iraq where the training of terrorists took place and a facility where anthrax was being manufactured as a weapon of mass destruction. It was all false.

8. Supplied by US intelligence and Iraqi exiles, planted stories in the British and US media helped George Bush and Tony Blair to launch an illegal invasion which caused, according to the most recent study, 1.3 million deaths.

9. Something similar is happening over Iran: the same syncopation of government and media “revelations”, the same manufacture of a sense of crisis. “Showdown looms with Iran over secret nuclear plant”, declared the Guardian on 26 September. “Showdown” is the theme. High noon. The clock ticking. Good versus evil. Add a smooth new US president who has “put paid to the Bush years”.

10. The official jargon for this kind of propaganda is “psy-ops”, the military term for psychological operations. In the Pentagon and Whitehall, it has become a critical component of a diplomatic and military campaign to blockade, isolate and weaken Iran by hyping its “nuclear threat”: a phrase now used incessantly by Barack Obama and Gordon Brown, and parroted by the BBC and other broadcasters as objective news. And it is fake.

11. On 16 September, Newsweek disclosed that the major US intelligence agencies had reported to the White House that Iran’s “nuclear status” had not changed since the National Intelligence Estimate of November 2007, which stated with “high confidence” that Iran had halted in 2003 the programme it was alleged to have developed. The International Atomic Energy Agency has backed this, time and again.

Author: John Pilger

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