Many Voices Calling for War with Iran

Many Voices Calling for War with Iran

Posted By Philip Giraldi On March 3, 2010 @ 11:00 pm

Wanting to go to war with Iran has created some very strange bedfellows.  Leading neoconservative Daniel Pipes’ assertion that President Barack Obama can salvage his presidency and get reelected by attacking Iran is about as low as it gets, suggesting as it does that an act of war can and should serve as a diversion from a failed domestic agenda.  The soldiers and civilians who would inevitably die in such a conflict might not agree with Pipes that all is fair in politics.  They would no doubt consider themselves betrayed and manipulated by a venal and disconnected political leadership, but no matter.  It would not be a first time a neocon would consider a non-neocon casualty little more than a disagreeable statistic.

Sarah Palin is on the Pipes bandwagon, showing up at the mid-February Nashville Tea Party convention sporting an Israeli flag lapel pin and subsequently urging the president to do the right thing in supporting Israel by attacking Iran.  As she put it, President Obama would improve his chances of re-election by showing people how tough he is.  Pipes is at least smart enough to understand the implications of what he was saying, but Palin apparently was just parroting a line fed to her by Bill Kristol or one of her other handlers.  Even Dick Cheney found the Palin line to be too much, pointing out that no one should go to war for reasons of domestic politics.  Whether he actually believes that or not is unclear.

But possibly the most bizarre commentary supporting war with Iran was penned by Anne Applebaum for the Washington Post on February 23rd.  Applebaum is married to the reliably conservative Polish Foreign Minister Radek Sikorski, who is himself an American Enterprise Institute alumnus.  She is an Obama supporter but generally has been described as a conservative who adheres to a hard line on foreign policy issues, perhaps not too surprising a triangulation as Obama himself has betrayed a goodly percentage of his flock by moving in the same direction.  She sometimes confuses her personal agenda with her public advocacy, writing, for example, several articles calling on Roman Polanski to be freed while her husband in his official capacity was garnering support from the European diplomatic community to the same end.

Applebaum’s “Ready for an Iran war?” is not particularly subtle but it is interesting how she frames her argument.  The first three quarters of the piece could almost be considered an antiwar statement.  It details just how bad a war with Iran could be in terms of the possible consequences.  She notes that the US does not want to attack Iran because no one knows where all the nuclear sites are, because an attack would only set back the alleged weapons program by a few months, and because Iran could easily engage in serious retaliation both against US troops in the region and against Israel.  Applebaum also recognizes that oil prices would surge as soon as military action started.  And she then goes on to argue that the Israelis likely have the same reservations about the efficacy of an attack on Iran.  So far so good.

But then she shifts gears, warning “At some point, that calculation could change” because “the Israelis regard the Iranian nuclear program as a matter of life and death” due to the “Iranian president’s provocative attacks on Israel’s right to exist.”  Per Applebaum, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad supports “historians who deny the Holocaust” and suggests that Israelis might become “the target of an attempted mass murder.”

Applebaum then posits that there might well be a 2 a.m. phone call to the White House from the Israeli Prime Minister announcing the completion of a bombing attack on Iran. “I don’t want this to happen – but I do want us to be prepared if it does,” concluding that “I do hope that this administration is ready, militarily and psychologically, not for a war of choice but for an unwanted war of necessity.  This is real life, after all, not Hollywood.”

Actually Applebaum’s analysis is itself more like Hollywood than real life and its claim of “necessity” is little more than an appreciation that someone you have just struck might attempt to hit you back.  A little fact checking for her article might have also proven useful.  Iran is a military midget compared to Israel.  It has no nuclear weapons and is apparently far away from obtaining them even if it makes a decision to do so and can master the necessary enrichment technology.  Israel has a large secret nuclear arsenal together with missiles and submarines to deliver the weapons on target.  Iran, far from a nation bent on a genocidal suicide mission, has never threatened to destroy or attack Israel while Israel has repeatedly threatened to use force against Iran.  Many reported Iranian government “statements” to the contrary are deliberate mistranslations.

Applebaum cleverly dresses her scenario in a cloak of inevitability, suggesting to the reader that “this is what is going to happen.”  Her dire forecast is intended to increase American acceptance of the likelihood of a preemptive war with Iran, but war is by no means certain if everyone involved makes a serious effort to avoid it.  As Israel knows its air force cannot cripple Iran, its government has had to devise a scheme to get the US to do it instead, which is precisely what is being promoted by Anne Applebaum, Daniel Pipes, and all the other usual suspects who have already brought America fun and games in Iraq and Afghanistan.  Vladimir Ilyich Lenin used to describe people like Applebaum as “useful idiots,” journalists who advance a cause in the belief that they are supporting something worthwhile, not understanding that they have been manipulated.

How to stop an Israeli attack?  All the White House has to do is to say “no” to Israel firmly and publicly and tie that no to a commitment to cut off all military and economic aid to Tel Aviv if Bibi Netanyahu opts to do otherwise. Applebaum only sees realpolitik in one direction, coming from Israel and what Israel’s “needs” might be.  She is not alone in making that type of assessment.  She seems ignorant of the fact that an Israeli bombing attack on Iran would have to cross Iraq, where the airspace is controlled by the United States.  The Pentagon can tell Israel flatly that it will use whatever force is necessary to stop an Israeli overflight knowing that if the US were to permit the attack it would be an accomplice to it, virtually requiring the Iranians to retaliate and drawing Washington into the war whether it wanted to be there or not. 

And if there remained any uncertainty about what to do about Iran after the Applebaum op-ed, the Post used the same page in the same edition of the paper for an additional article by Richard Cohen making pretty much the same points as Applebaum about those awful Iranians, “Fight crazy with crazy.”  Cohen takes pains to ridicule any suggestion that the US might be tempted to use force to deter an Israeli attack on Iran, characteristically opining that we might thereby “Shoot our friends to defend our enemies.”  Cohen and Applebaum together make the case that preemptive war against Iran is somehow both justifiable and inevitable, ignoring the fact that Iran has never threatened the United States.  Their Israel-centric view makes it appear completely acceptable for Washington to yet again go to war on behalf of Tel Aviv.

Well it all comes together neatly, doesn’t it?  Those Iranians are well outside the pale and always will be, Cohen calling Ahmadinejad a Hitler come to earth again, and it is downright churlish of anyone to even suggest that we Americans might well have a national interest differing from that of Israel. How dare one express concern that the United States might be badly damaged if Tel Aviv starts another war in a deliberate attempt to “Wag the Dog?” But if there is a contrary view to Applebaum and Cohen you won’t find it in the Washington Post unless you take the time to review the hundreds of comments posted on both articles, which are almost all hostile if one weeds out the syntactically challenged cheerleading entries inserted by the industrious drones at the Israel Foreign Ministry. A number of bloggers not surprisingly describe Cohen and Applebaum as Israel-firsters.  To be sure, the United States national interest as it relates to the Middle East quagmire would appear to be of no concern to Fred Hiatt and the others who manage the Post’s editorial and op-ed pages.

Read more by Philip Giraldi

18 Responses to “Many Voices Calling for War with Iran”

  • denmason says:

    Lead the charge Pipes. Ready to sacrifice your own kids Pipes???
    Thought not.

  • pagan says:

    absolute madness Israel leads America by the nose once more wake up America it will be your blood that is shed !!!

  • Archie1954 says:

    I really despair of the US ever learning from history when I read such articles. Please explain to me when Israel was ever a friend of America’s. I know it only as a blood sucking leach. Does anyone remember the Liberty? That was the US ship that was blasted out of the water by the Israeli airforce in 1967 and then the struggling US navy men in the water were set upon by Israeli guns attempting to kill them. Some friend! How many times do the Israelis have to be caught spying on US soil before the truth about how “friendly” they really are becomes common knowledge? Why do you think 911 happened, if it really was a foreign terrorist attack? I’ll tell you why, because the US instead of attempting to curtail Israeli atrocities, gives them carte blanche to do their worst and stands behind them with a guarantee of security. Is that what the American people really want, to be put smack in the middle of the firing line for a rogue state? Well it’s your lives that are forefeit for your own stupidity. You have always supported “made in America” and this war on terrorism is definitely that!

  • I posted in washingtonpost in response to Applebaum’s article and described
    her as Mossad Agent alongwith majority in White House, Congress and Senate etc. My post was deleted later.
    Rest is in:


  • cyndy williams says:

    There is such clarity to the non-existence of reason for advancing an attack on IRAN…IF ALL AMERICANS would inform themselves with the TRUTHS available, such as Philip Giraldi writes, we not only COULD but WOULD stop the non- sensical prattle of “useful idiots” and their rhetorical gibberish which, unfortunately, the “powers that be”, as well as the “wanna-bes”, are attempting to utilize as words of meaning in support of an attack on IRAN. That these “useful idiots” speak as though such attack is inevitable only furthers the depth of any sensible, thinking person questioning such. WE THE PEOPLE need to educate, organize, stand up, speak out. This is OUR COUNTRY, OUR MONEY, OUR SONS AND DAUGHTERS, OUR FUTURE! THE TIME IS NOW!

  • Marc says:

    The ziofreak provocateurs are at it again. The USA is just a tool for these goons and it just does not matter how much this latest escapade will cost in lives and treasure as long as Bibi gets his fill …

  • ew_keane says:

    First of all, I will say here and now that I no longer work for the interests of a global military complex…at least, I no longer volentarily support it.

    Second, It sickens me that this land, that would be the subscribe to the notion that “freedom is not free”, and would bond its citizens with irredeemable debt, for the lifes blood of the us economy, ‘the dollar’, is based on debt.

    When america was founded, it was populated with savage barbarians. Some of the savages were tamed with culture, some with wiskey, and many with bullets and forced marches to reservations. The storys of ancient america would astound you, but to say that they had lived on that land for along time, and knew the ways of war with simple clubs, and arrows.

    I suppose that some veiw the whole of the earth as some sort of greater america. I do not share that notion. I have a hard enough time understanding the aims of the leaders in my own county, less that of some beurocrat in a foreign land is plotting to obtain american substance for less than its worth.

    On the subject of Iran, I remember as a young child seeing a dirty,long haired youth
    wearing a shirt that said “FUCK IRAN”. That was in 1978, I believe. That was because Iranian reformers, who wanted american sabatures and spys out off of their land, and took over the embassy. Recently, it was revealed that It was a CIA spy nest, the same CIA that takes credit for the 1953 revolt that overthrew their elected president, and put the Shah of Iran back on his throne.

    Never the less, appologists will suggest that all the skullduggery was neccessary to combat the expantion of the soviet sphere of influence. Since the fall(?) of soviet communism happened in 1989, why have proper relations with the state of Iran never taken place? 21 wasted years, in my opinion, due to the meddling of such charmers as Brezinski, and superkrout Kissinger. This sick policy of holding the world hostage must end if the average american is to have a happy and secure life.

    So what if Iran pops a nuke on american soil? If its a 4th generation, its pretty clean, and the inflicted land could be rebuilt in less than a generation (see Nagasaki, ect…) I could care less, I have had the threat of a nuke falling on my head since I can remember. I have lived in or close to targets all my life. I have other things to worry about, and so do you, dear reader.

    America has been dumping depleated uranium on vast expanses of that region for years. Who cares? Not america, it seems. That way of thinking needs to change.

    As far as Isreal goes, Let us no longer play the role of golem for that land. If they are gods chosen people, then they will have their portion. Just dont ask me to pay for it and play client to an international welfare state.

  • Mihail says:

    Our race is the Master Race. We are divine gods on this planet. We are as different from the inferior races as they are from insects. In fact, compared to our race, other races are beasts and animals, cattle at best. Other races are considered as human excrement. Our destiny is to rule over the inferior races. Our earthly kingdom will be ruled by our leader with a rod of iron. The masses will lick our feet and serve us as our slaves.”

    — Menachem Begin – Israeli Prime Minister 1977–1983

    “They are the so-called neo-cons, or neo-conservatives. A compact group, almost all of whose members are Jewish. They hold the key positions in the Bush administration, as well as in the think-tanks that play an important role in formulating American policy and the ed-op pages of the influential newspapers….

    Seemingly, all this is good for Israel. America controls the world, we control America. Never before have Jews exerted such an immense influence on the center of world power.” Uri Avnery, “The Night After,”

    Counterpunch, April 10, 2003.

  • From:

    Caliph wrote:

    “Your User ID, Caliph, will be displayed with your comment.

    Add a comment (Limit 5000 characters / 5000 characters remaining)”

    I have no time to post any more as all posts were deleted as I wrote about fact on Mossad in USA
    2/25/2010 8:54:59 PM
    Recommended (2)

    Rest is in:

    Regards and thanks,

  • Mark says:

    Ready TO PAY for the war in IRAN?
    Ready TO VOLUNTEER to fight in IRAN? No Way Jose!
    Ready to see your sons DIE in IRAN via trickery and lies? No Way
    Ready for higher taxes to pay for the war in IRAN? Didnt think so…

    We are broke BROKE BROKE bROKE
    and our troops are exhausted

  • Mister Jimmy says:

    Wrong. The White House cannot say ‘no’ to Israel on anything. This country is governed by Israel. Obama literally takes his orders from the ‘dual-citizens’ surrounding him. The US is the junior partner in the equation and Israel calls the shots. We do what they say, plain and simple. If ordered to attack Iran, Obama and Hitlery will instantly do so.

  • Ian says:

    Anyone that supports the Israeli leadership (not the people – it’s the leaders that are the problem) must be an idiot. There is simply no need for ANY of the rubbish that is happening in the middle east. None. Why on Earth the USA is so supportive of the Israeli leadership is beyond comprehension. The entire situation is beyond even a sick black humour sit-com. Can we get some people in there that can actually think and reason? Anyone? At all? Any takers?..No? None at all?.. Oh dear. This is going to be very, very bad. And the winner will be?….No one at all.

  • Wilson says:

    America, your salt hath lost its sovour. Filled with a mess of selfish, greedy, cowardly ignoramuses, you are. The contitution is long gone. Your society is a dry and empty husk. There are a few heroes, yes, and a few patriots holding out that their country may take that narrow road toward the shining light. Almost all Americans are committing treason in exchange for a few sheckels, if that. If not, the opposite of that. The founding fathers would long ago been shocked, amazed and insulted to the highest possible degree. America, you honestly make me sick. – one of a few left



  • RightofRush says:

    The current government in Iran is reprehensible. An attack by Israel will not make it less so. It’s time to be sneaky. Iran has a large secular-leaning middle class that is harried and suppressed and eager for change.

    Why not give them covert help? Help in in the form of money, arms, and other material. Make the CIA, MI6, and the Mossad earn their money and live up to their hyped reputations.

  • enjoyed this writing!

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