Israel Lobby Still Pushing Hard for Confrontation with Iran

The Israel Lobby (of which The Israel Project is a part) is still pushing hard for confrontation with Iran no matter how many Americans may have to die/get horribly wounded as a result of such (such confirms the Mearsheimer/Walt book yet again):

From: The Israel Project [mailto:press@theisraelproject.org]
Sent: Monday, February 15, 2010 3:41 PM

Subject: Top U.S. Officials in Middle East to Lay Groundwork for Stronger Action on Iran

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Feb. 15, 2010

Contact:
Jennifer Laszlo Mizrahi: 202-857-6644 (office), 202-365-0787 (cell), jenniferm@theisraelproject.org
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Top U.S. Officials in Middle East to Lay Groundwork for Stronger Action on Iran
Biden Expected in Israel Next Week for First Official Visit

Experts for comment
Iran Press Kit

The United States’ military chief, secretary of state and other high-ranking officials are touring key Middle East nations starting this week as part of an effort by the Obama administration to build support for its increasingly assertive stance against Iran’s nuclear program.[1]

Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Adm. Mike Mullen arrived in Jordan Monday (Feb. 15) after holding talks earlier in the day in Israel with Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak and on Sunday (Feb. 14) with Israel Defense Forces (IDF) Chief of General Staff Lt. Gen. Gabi Ashkenazi.[2] At a press conference there, Mullen emphasized his determination to peacefully prevent Iran from developing nuclear weapons.[3] Mullen began his five-nation tour on Sunday in Cairo where he met with Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak. He will also travel to Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.[4]

Meanwhile, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton is traveling in the Persian Gulf to advance the United States’ Iran policy with regional partners.[5] Clinton arrived in Saudi Arabia Monday,[6] where she is scheduled to meet with Saudi King Abdullah and Foreign Minister Prince Saud al-Faisal.[7] On Sunday, Clinton was in Doha, Qatar where she spoke at the U.S.-Islamic World Forum and met with Qatari Prime Minister Sheik Hamad bin Jassim al-Thani.[8]

Under Secretary of State William Burns is also expected in the Middle East this week, traveling to Lebanon on Feb. 16 and Syria on Feb. 17 for talks with both nations’ leaders.[9] Lebanon sits on the Security Council and could block sanctions if influenced by its neighbor Syria, a key Iranian ally.[10] Also, Vice President Joe Biden is expected in Israel next week for his first official visit, although the trip is still unannounced.[11] Deputy Secretary of State Jim Steinberg also plans to travel to Israel on Feb. 21 for high-level discussions about Iran.[12]

During her discussions with Saudi King Abdullah, Clinton reportedly hopes to gain a commitment that the kingdom will provide China with needed oil if China supports a fourth round of sanctions against Iran at the UN Security Council.[13] China, a permanent member of the Council, has continued to oppose U.S. efforts to secure tougher sanctions.[14]

Clinton, speaking Sunday night at the U.S.-Islamic World Forum questioned Iran’s continued defiance. “What does Iran have to hide? Why is Iran refusing to live up to its international obligations, which would lead to political and economic integration with the international community that would actually benefit the Iranian people? Iran leaves the international community little choice but to impose greater costs for its provocative steps.”[15]

An indication of the White House’s growing seriousness about sanctions came last week when Under Secretary of Treasury Stuart Levey announced the United States was imposing financial sanctions on an engineering firm affiliated with Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps, designated by the U.S. as a proliferator of weapons of mass destruction,[16] as well as a supporter of multiple terrorist groups.[17]

Secretary Clinton’s Speech at U.S.-Islamic World Forum
Remarks by Secretary Clinton and Qatari Minister Al Thani

Experts available for comment (United States and Israel)

In the United States:

David Albright, President, Institute for Science and International Security (ISIS)
Tel: 202-547-3633; E-mail: albright@isis-online.org

Ilan Berman, Vice President for Policy, American Foreign Policy Council;
author, “Tehran Rising: Iran’s Challenge to the United States” (2005);
Tel: 202-543-1006 (office); http://www.afpc.org/berman.shtml

Debra Burlingame, Sister of Charles F. “Chic” Burlingame, III, pilot of American Airlines Flight 77 that crashed into the Pentagon on 9/11; Co-founder, 9/11 Families for a Safe and Strong America; Director, World Trade Center Memorial Foundation; Tel: 914-844-3146; E-mail: db@911familiesforamerica.org

Patrick Clawson, Ph.D., Deputy Director for Research,
The Washington Institute for Near East Policy;
Tel: 202-452-0650 ext. 220 (office), 202-302-1722 (cell);
E-mail: pclawson@washingtoninstitute.org;
Web site: http://www.washingtoninstitute.org/templateC10.php?CID=10

Frank Gaffney, President, The Center for Security Policy and Founder, DivestTerror.org;
E-mail: gaffney@centerforsecuritypolicy.org;
Web site: www.centerforsecuritypolicy.org

Andrew Grotto, Senior National Security Analyst, Center for American Progress; Tel: 202-682-1611 (office);
E-mail: agrotto@americanprogress.org

Larry Haas, Visiting Senior Fellow, Georgetown Public Policy Institute;
Tel: 202-257-9592 (cell); www.larryhaasonline.com

Sam Kermanian, Secretary General, Iranian American Jewish Federation;
Tel: 310-854-1199 (office, direct); E-mail: skermanian@tradeattache.com

Orde Kittrie, Professor of Law, Arizona State University; former U.S. State Department attorney specializing in nuclear nonproliferation and sanctions;
Tel: 480-727-8572 (office); E-mail: orde.kittrie@asu.edu

Dr. Michael Ledeen, Freedom Scholar, Foundation for Defense of Democracies;
Contact through Judy Mayka, Tel: 202-621-3948; E-mail: Judy@defenddemocracy.org

Valerie Lincy, Editor, Iranwatch.org;
Tel: 202-223-8299 (office); E-mail: valerie@wisconsinproject.org; http://www.iranwatch.org/

Claire Lopez, Consultant and Former Executive Director, Iran Policy Committee;
Tel: 703-583-9573 (office); E-mail: clairelopez@gmail.com

Cliff May, President and Executive Director, The Foundation for the Defense of Democracies;
Contact through Judy Mayka, Tel: 202-621-3948; E-mail: Judy@defenddemocracy.org

Lily Mazahery, President, Legal Rights Institute
Tel: 202-834-7150; E-mail: lmazahery@gmail.com

Gary Milhollin, Executive Director, Wisconsin Project on Nuclear Arms Control;
Tel: 202-223-8299 (office); E-mail: info@wisconsinproject.org

Jennifer Laszlo Mizrahi, Founder and President, The Israel Project;
Tel: 202-857-6644 (office); www.theisraelproject.org

Michael Rubin, Resident Scholar, American Enterprise Institute;
Tel: 202-862-5851 (office); Fax: 202-862-4877; E-mail: mrubin@aei.org

Rick Santorum, Former U.S. Senator (R-Penn.), Senior Fellow of the Ethics and Public Policy Center; Contact Virginia Davis, Cell: 215-528-9368; Home office: 610-658-9658;
E-mail: virginiad@ricksantorum.com, virginiadavis05@gmail.com

U.S. Rep. Brad Sherman, D-Calif., Chairman, International Terrorism, Non-Proliferation & Trade Committee;
Tel: 202-225-5911 (office); www.house.gov/sherman/about

Ken Timmerman, President, Middle East Data Project, Inc.;
Author, “Countdown to Crisis: The Coming Nuclear Showdown with Iran” (2005);
Tel: 301-946-2918 (office); E-mail: timmerman.road@verizon.net; www.KenTimmerman.com

Peter Zimmerman, Professor Emeritus, King’s College, London
Tel: 703-966-6680; peter.zimmerman@cox.net

In Israel:

Amb. Jeremy Issacharoff, Senior Research Fellow, Institute of National Security Studies;
Tel: 011-972-3- 640-0400 ext 463 (work); Tel: 011-972-50-620-3887 (cell); E-mail: jeremyi@inss.org.il

Professor Ze’ev Maghen, Lecturer in the History of the Middle East, The Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies, Bar-Ilan University;
Tel: 011-972-3-531-7812 (office); 011-972-52-383-4069 (cell); E-mail: maghenz@netvision.net.il;

http://www.biu.ac.il/SOC/besa

David Menashri, Chair of Modern Iranian Studies, Tel Aviv University;
Tel: 011-972-3-640-8911 or 011-972-3-640-6161 (office); 011-972-8-940-1467 (home);
E-mail: menashri@post.tau.ac.il

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Footnotes:

[1] Youssef, Nancy A., “U.S. begins Mideast push for ideas on Iranian solution,” The Miami Herald, Feb. 14, 2010, http://www.miamiherald.com/news/world/AP/story/1480309.html

[2] Ferziger, Jonathan, “Barak Tells Mullen Israel, U.S. Can Patch Differences (Update1),” BusinessWeek, Feb. 15, 2010, http://www.businessweek.com/news/2010-02-15/barak-tells-mullen-israel-u-s-can-patch-differences-update1-.html

[3] Lecker, Maya, “Mullen: Attack on Iran could have ‘unintended consequences,’” The Jerusalem Post, Feb. 14, 2010, http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3849059,00.html

[4] Youssef, Nancy A., “U.S. begins Mideast push for ideas on Iranian solution,” The Miami Herald, Feb. 14, 2010, http://www.miamiherald.com/news/world/AP/story/1480309.html

[5] “Clinton warns Iran not to ‘build their bomb,’” BBC News, Feb. 14, 2010, http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/8514772.stm

[6] Kessler, Glenn, “Clinton expected to seek Saudi Arabia’s help in confronting Iran,” The Washington Post, Feb. 15, 2010, http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/02/15/AR2010021501038.html

[7] “Clinton warns Iran not to ‘build their bomb,’” BBC News, Feb. 14, 2010, http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/8514772.stm

[8] Landler, Mark, “Clinton Pleads for Patience at U.S.-Islamic World Forum,” The New York Times, Feb. 14, 2010, http://www.nytimes.com/2010/02/15/world/middleeast/15diplo.html

[9] “Under Secretary Burns Travel to Lebanon, Syria, Turkey, and Azerbaijan,” U.S. Department of State Office of the Spokesman, Feb. 12, 2010, http://www.state.gov/r/pa/prs/ps/2010/02/136650.htm

[10] “Clinton warns Iran not to ‘build their bomb,’” BBC News, Feb. 14, 2010, http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/8514772.stm

[11] Benhorin, Yitzhak, “US Vice President Biden to visit Israel,” YnetNews, Feb. 15, 2010, http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3849143,00.html

[12] Landler, Mark, “U.S. Envoys Head Out on a Mission to Rally Iran’s Neighbors,” The New York Times, Feb. 12, 2010, http://www.nytimes.com/2010/02/13/world/middleeast/13diplo.html

[13] Kessler, Glenn, “Clinton expected to seek Saudi Arabia’s help in confronting Iran,” The Washington Post, Feb. 15, 2010, http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/02/15/AR2010021501038.html

[14] Morris, Harvey, “China move threatens to delay tougher Iran sanctions,” The Financial Times, Jan. 18, 2010, http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/d2eac63e-03d1-11df-a601-00144feabdc0.html

[15] “Secretary Clinton’s Speech at U.S.-Islamic World Forum,” America.gov, Feb. 14, 2010, http://www.america.gov/st/texttrans-english/2010/February/20100215084929ptellivremos0.9392163.html?CP.rss=true

[16] Rozen, Laura, “U.S. announces sanctions on Iran-linked firm,” Politico, Feb. 11, 2010, http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0210/32811.html

[17] “Background Note: Iran,” U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs, September 2009, http://www.state.gov/r/pa/ei/bgn/5314.htm

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