Archive for January, 2010

Iran Sanctions, ‘Regime Change,’ Take Center Stage

Iran Sanctions, ‘Regime Change,’ Take Center Stage

Posted By Jim Lobe On January 27, 2010 @ 11:00 pm In Uncategorized | 5 Comments

With the Senate set to take up major sanctions legislation against Iran by mid-February, neo-conservative and other hawks are calling on the administration of President Barack Obama to pursue a more aggressive course of “regime change” in Tehran.

In recent days, their call was unexpectedly bolstered by a Newsweek column authored by the president of the influential Council on Foreign Relations (CFR), Richard Haass.

Haass is a long-time protégé of realists such as former national security adviser Brent Scowcroft and secretary of state Colin Powell, who have advocated a policy of broad engagement with Iran over its nuclear program and other issues.

Citing the unprecedented and persistent unrest generated by the disputed June elections in Iran, Haass argued that “Iran may be closer to profound political change than at any time since the revolution that ousted the shah 30 years ago” and that “the United States, European governments, and others should shift their Iran policy towards increasing the prospects for (that) change.”

“Even a realist should recognize that it’s an opportunity not to be missed,” he concluded.

Haass’s change of heart was quickly seized on by leading neo-conservatives who have long favored a regime-change policy toward Tehran as the most effective way to deal with Tehran’s controversial nuclear program

Writing in the Washington Post Wednesday, Robert Kagan of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace cited the Haass conversion with enthusiasm, arguing that “President Obama has a once-in-a-generation opportunity over the next few months to help make the world a dramatically safer place.”

“Given the role that the Islamic theocracy in Tehran has played in leading and sponsoring anti-democratic, anti-liberal and anti-Western fanaticism for the past three decades, the toppling or even substantial reform of that regime would be second only to the collapse of the Soviet Union in its ideological and geopolitical ramifications,” he wrote.

The renewed push for a “regime change” policy comes as Congress moves closer to enacting sweeping sanctions legislation that many Iran specialists, including some inside the Obama administration, believe could, if implemented, actually strengthen the regime in Tehran.

Under heavy pressure from the so-called “Israel Lobby”, the House of Representatives last month approved one long-delayed bill that would, among other things, impose penalties on foreign energy companies that provide gasoline to Iran or invest more than 20 million dollars a year in Iran’s energy sector. The vote was 412-12.

Majority Leader Harry Reid Tuesday announced that the Senate will take up its own sanctions legislation by mid-February.

In addition to incorporating the House bill, the Senate version would extend sanctions to businesses that sell Iran technology that can be used to disrupt monitor or disrupt communications among Iranians or between them and the rest of the world. It would require the administration to freeze the assets of Iranians, notably officials in Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), allegedly active in weapons proliferation or terrorism.

While that legislation is also expected to pass by a wide margin, it may be softened between now and then in negotiations with the administration, which is insisting that Obama be given maximum discretion in imposing or not imposing sanctions so as to ensure they do not undermine Washington’s efforts at maintaining a united front on Iran’s nuclear program with other key countries, notably the major European powers, Russia and China.

“I am concerned that this legislation, in the current form, might weaken rather than strengthen international unity and support for our efforts,” wrote Deputy Secretary of State James Steinberg in a letter to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chair John Kerry last month.

The administration’s position is also backed by multinational business associations worried that unilateral sanctions will provoke resentment and retaliation from third countries whose corporations could be targeted under the pending legislation.

Nine such associations, including the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the National Association of Manufacturers, and the National Foreign Trade Council, warned in a letter to the White House Tuesday that the “the unilateral, extraterritorial, and overly broad approach of these bills would undercut rather than advance th(e) critical objective… of preventing Iran from developing the capability to produce nuclear weapons.”

While corporations appear most concerned about the impact of the proposed sanctions on their overseas business interests, the administration has reportedly become increasingly worried that the kinds of broad sanctions featured in the pending legislation could weaken the opposition movement in Iran by imposing hardships on average citizens whose response may be to rally behind the regime.

“Our goal is to pressure the Iranian government, particularly the Revolutionary Guard elements, without contributing to the suffering (of Iranians,) who deserve better than what they are currently receiving,” said Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in early January.

Earlier this year, Clinton called for the adoption of “crippling sanctions” against Iran — including those that are included in the pending legislation — if it did not curb its nuclear program

“Up until recently the administration thought of sanctions only in the context of trying to alter the Iranian government’s nuclear calculations,” according to Karim Sadjadpour, an Iran specialist at the Carnegie Endowment.

“I think they’re now thinking much harder about what types of measures would be helpful or hurtful to the cause of democratic reform in Iran. It is not coincidental that the word ‘crippling’ has been replaced by the word ‘targeted’,” he said.

In his op-ed, Haass appears to mostly agree with this approach, opposing unilateral sanctions — except against the IRGC and its businesses — that could alienate Washington’s international allies or average Iranians. In addition, he calls for continuing talks on Iran’s nuclear program, although he suggests it should not rise above “working-level negotiations.”

And although he calls for “regime change”, he does not rule out “full normalization of relations” with the Islamic Republic, provided that it is “linked to meaningful reform of Iran’s politics and an end to Tehran’s support of terrorism.”

Haass also urges greater support for the opposition, including funding for a human rights documentation Centrex here and technical support to facilitate communications among Iranians and with the outside world, measures that are currently also being considered by the administration and Congress. He stresses that all support for the opposition should be non-violent.

Kagan, like other neo-conservatives — some of whom have long urged U.S. and Israeli military strikes against Iran’s nuclear facilities — has a somewhat more sweeping view of “regime change” by calling for “a new form of government.”

While he does not explicitly reject continuing negotiations over Tehran’s nuclear program, he argues that the opportunity created by the ongoing political turmoil should give it a much lower priority.

“Regime change is more important than any deal the Obama administration might strike with Iran’s present government on its nuclear program,” according to Kagan.

Significantly, he also warned against an Israeli attack which, he noted, “would provide a huge boost to the Tehran regime just when it is on the ropes.”

(Inter Press Service)

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Israel Lobby still pushing hard for confrontation with Iran


From: The Israel Project []
Sent: Thursday, January 28, 2010 12:53 PM

Subject: As Iran’s Leader Renews Threat against Israel, U.S. Policymakers Call for Stronger Sanctions


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As Iran’s Leader Renews Threat against Israel, U.S. Policymakers Call for Stronger Sanctions

Iran’s supreme leader this week made his most explicit threat against Israel in years,[1] implying that other Muslim countries should band together to destroy Israel. The comments by Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei came a day before President Obama’s State of the Union address Wednesday (Jan. 27) in which the President threatened stricter sanctions against the Islamic Republic for its continued defiance of nuclear negotiations.[2]

Said President Obama in his speech Wednesday (Jan. 27), “As Iran’s leaders continue to ignore their obligations, there should be no doubt: They, too, will face growing consequences. That is a promise.”[3] China, a major Iranian trading partner, has continued to stymie the administration’s efforts to secure a fifth round of sanctions in the UN Security Council.[4]

Meanwhile, a bipartisan group of U.S. senators is pushing the Obama administration to implement immediate, tougher sanctions on Iran and build international support for them.[5]

Khamenei, in a meeting with the president of Mauritania, said Tuesday, “It is certain that the day will come for the regional nations to witness the collapse of the Zionist regime. Whether the day gets closer or farther to us depends on the performance of the Islamic countries and Muslim nations.“[6]

Iran continues its uranium enrichment activities unabated and earlier this month issued an ultimatum, warning that if the United States doesn’t accept Tehran’s counterproposal to a nuclear deal by the end of January, it will commence reactor fuel production at increased levels of enrichment.[7]

In order to avoid a military confrontation with Iran, the bipartisan Senate coalition is calling for U.S. action in the face of what they say is likely to be continued stalling at the UN. “We must…exhaust every possible non-military means at our disposal to prevent Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapons capability,” stated a letter by U.S. senators including Evan Bayh (D-Ind.), Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.), Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.), Chuck Schumer (D-NY), John McCain (R-Ariz.), Robert Casey (D-Penn.), Johnny Isakson (R-Ga.), Ben Cardin (D-Md.) and David Vitter (R-La.).[8]

U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) pledged Tuesday to bring sweeping sanctions legislation to the Senate floor by mid-February.[9] If passed, the Comprehensive Iran Sanctions, Accountability, and Divestment Act of 2009 (S. 2799) would enable state divestment efforts and target U.S. companies that provide refined petroleum to Iran. Iran’s inability to refine petroleum is a key liability for the Islamic Republic.[10]

The petroleum provisions are based on another Senate bill, the Iran Refined Petroleum Sanctions Act (S. 908). The House of Representatives overwhelmingly passed its version of the bill last month.[11]  


[1] “ Iran ‘s leader predicts Israel ‘s destruction,” AP, Jan. 27, 2010,

[2] “Remarks by the President in State of the Union Address,” White House Office of the Press Secretary, Jan. 27, 2010,

[3] “Remarks by the President in State of the Union Address,” White House Office of the Press Secretary, Jan. 27, 2010,

[4] Morris, Harvey , “ China move threatens to delay tougher Iran sanctions,” The Financial Times, Jan. 18, 2010,

[5] “Bipartisan Senate Coalition Urges President: Sanction Iran Now,” Web site of Senator Joseph Lieberman (CT), Jan. 27, 2010, 

[6] “Meeting with Mauritanian President Mohamed Ould Abd Aziz,” The Office of the Supreme Leader, Sayyid Ali Khamenei, Jan. 26, 2010,

[7] Dareini, Ali Akbar, “Iran Warns West It Will Make Its Own Nuclear Fuel,” ABC News via AP, Jan. 2, 2010,

[8] “Bipartisan Senate Coalition Urges President: Sanction Iran Now,” Web site of Senator Joseph Lieberman (CT), Jan. 27, 2010,

[9] “Reid to bring Iran bill by mid-February,” JTA, Jan. 27, 2010,

[10] Hall, Kevin G., “ Iran faces sanctions, which could include targeting gasoline imports,” The Miami Herald, Sept. 25, 2009,

[11] Rozen, Laura, “House Iran petroleum sanctions bill passes (UPDATED),” Politico, Dec. 15, 2009,


The Israel Project  is an international non-profit organization devoted to educating the press and the public about Israel while promoting security, freedom and peace. The Israel Project provides journalists, leaders and opinion-makers accurate information about Israel. The Israel Project is not related to any government or government agency.     


Covert US paramilitaries attacking Iran from within, authorized by secret executive order. This was briefly reported, but it dropped from notice

Covert US paramilitaries attacking Iran from within, authorized by secret executive order. This was briefly reported, but it dropped from notice.

Review and Interview with Journalist Allan Nairn on Democracy Now

by Arn Specter, Phila. (arnpeace-Twitter), January 7, 2010
In this thought provoking interview

Additional at bottom of following post:

Future of Iran (C-SPAN interview with Flynt Leverett):

Is Iran Next?

Is Iran Next?

Sunday, January 31, 2010 10:32 AM
From: “Stephen Sniegoski”

While I can’t seem to get publicity for my book, “The Transparent Cabal” in
the United States,  I was able to  get on a news panel on CRI (Chinese Radio
International) English dealing with the subject of a possible U.S. attack on

It is rather ironic that I was allowed on a major Chinese government radio
station but have a hard time getting on any station in the U.S., no matter
how small.

The radio program was “Today on Beyond Beijing” hosted by Chris Gelken.  The
specific discussion topic was: “Is Iran Next?”  The description of the
program follows:

“The threat of military action against Iran over its nuclear program has
hung over the Middle East for a number of years. Does Iran pose a ‘clear and
present danger’ to US or global interests? What would be the basis for a
military strike and what would be the consequences? ‘Today’ asks the

The archive is at:

This was a very relevant topic since the New York Times writes  that the US
is increasing its missile defense system in  the Persian Gulf against a
possible Iranian attack.  Of course, the US would only need to strengthen
its defenses to deal with an Iranian counterattack after the US had first
bombed it.

Stephen Sniegoski


Iran Sanctions, ‘Regime Change,’ Take Center Stage

AIPAC (and the rest of the pro-Israel lobby) pushing hard for new Iran sanctions!

Press TV interview with Dr. Stephen Sniegoski (Author of “The Transparent Cabal”):


Be sure (if interested further) to read the write-up by Dr. Stephen Sniegoski which is included along with the ‘Return of the Neocons’ Newsweek article at the following URL:



AIPAC (and the rest of the pro-Israel lobby) pushing hard for new Iran sanctions!

AIPAC (and the rest of the pro-Israel lobby) pushing hard for new Iran sanctions!

Hillary Clinton courts China’s support for sanctions against Iran

China & Russia oppose new US (AIPAC imposed) sanctions against Iran

P5+1 meeting on Iran ‘inconclusive’


US House passes Iran sanctions bill (for AIPAC/Israel) amid nuclear row

US business groups urge Obama to resist Iran sanctions bill

Ron Paul: Iran Sanctions Are Precursor to War

Truth about Israeli influence over US foreign policy gets out on C-SPAN

Truth about Israeli influence over US foreign policy gets out on C-SPAN


Dare to Discuss Terrorists’ Motives & Support Representative Press!


C-SPAN link to the entire Michael Scheuer segment is included at the following URL:


Los Angeles Heading for Bankruptcy (but there are always US taxpayer billions for Israel)

Los Angeles Heading for Bankruptcy, Mayor Tries to Prevent Bond Market Panic

Obama Approves $30 Billion in Military Aid to Israel Over Next Decade

U.S. To Store $800 Mil in Emergency Gear in Israel –

Ron Paul,USA is Bankrupt,Quit Buying Bombs,Fix America with our Not Unlimited Credit or We’re Done

Ron Paul, USA is Bankrupt,Quit Buying Bombs,Fix America with our Not Unlimited Credit or We’re Done

Ron Paul Powerful Speech – A Call for Revolution?

Ron Paul: Be Prepared for the Worst

Ben Stein, Apologize to Ron Paul for your Vicious Attack on Congressman Ron Paul:


Asking WHY is NOT “anti-Semitic” Ben Stein Plays the Anti-Semitism Card:

Ron Paul “They’re Terrorist Because We’re Occupiers”

When Troops and CIA Officers Die for a Fantasy (by former CIA Bin Laden head unit Michael Scheuer):

Is a U.S. Default Inevitable? by Patrick J Buchanan

Is a U.S. Default Inevitable? by Patrick J Buchanan

Ron Paul, USA is Bankrupt,Quit Buying Bombs,Fix America with our Not Unlimited Credit or We’re Done

Most Americans think stimulus dollars wasted: Poll

Economic Black Hole: 20 Reasons Why The U.S. Economy Is Dying And Is Simply Not Going To Recover

Jim Traficant States Truth About Israeli Total Control of America, Congress, Media.

My Choice for President, Jim Traficant
Part I Congressman Jim Traficant and Dr. Hesham Tillawi

Part 2 Congressman Jim Traficant and Dr. Hesham Tillawi

 Death of American Democracy:

The Anti-Semitism ‘trick’ (courageous American Jew Amy Goodman and former Israel government official talk about the ‘anti-Semitism’ trick on her ‘’ program via the following youtube):


“Israel has a powerful stranglehold on the American government,” controlling members of the House and Senate and involving the U.S. in wars in which it has little or no interest.

Death of American Democracy (see youtube video linked near top of following URL):