Monday, November 07, 2011

Hey, I Know What. Let's Lie Some More about Iran.

8 Nov 2011

by Jeff Huber

The Pentarchy* continues to blow smoke about Iran despite its long-standing inability to produce a smoking gun. 

In a 3 November piece for the Middle East Research and Information Project titled “Debunking the Iran ‘Terror Plot,’” my colleague Gareth Porter knocked the bottom out of what little credibility was left of assertions that elements of Iran’s QODs force were behind a plot to assassinate a Saudi ambassador and commit other tawdry terrorisms.

Hey, Abbott!  

A still image from Abbot and Costello
Meet the FBI
The FBI’s cock-eyed case was a keystone caper from creation to conclusion.  A narcotics seller turned DEA informant was dope-dealing his way out of a long prison sentence by dangling a hook in front an Iranian-American named Mansour J. “Scarface” Arbabsiar, a middle-aged alcoholic shipwreck best known for his unreliability, his slovenliness, his business and relationship failures and his limited ability to discriminate between perception and reality. 

A brigade of Jack Bauer wannabes in DEA, the FBI and other Justice Department booby hatcheries decided to make their careers by trumping up a fairy tale of evil deeds and the evil doers who do them for their equally career-minded bosses.  The next thing you knew we had a Tailor of Panama/Our Man in Havana scenario where a head of state, in this case young Mr. Obama, made a draconian foreign policy commitment based on the fabrications of subordinates who were blindingly over-ambitious and dazzlingly under-competent. 

The Scarface farce may has dipped back beneath the radar for now, the companion piece of the latest Iran scare stratagem has roared to the forefront.  While Mr. Obama was telling us that he knew for sure the Iranian government was up to infamous infamies because a dope dealer said that an aging drunk said so (and that was good enough for him), he also sprang the news that UN inspectors had new proof that Iran has a nuclear weapons program, though he didn’t say what that proof was, just like he doesn’t elaborate on the legal arguments he says support his unitary decisions to suspend the Constitution.

Keystone Kondi Klaims the Persians Puke a Peck of Split Pea Soup

Possessed by Dick Cheney or just stoned?
Over the weekend, the usual echo chamberlains launched the second wave of disingenuous accusations regarding Iran’s nuclear intentions.  Ghoulish Condi Rice, one of the most persistent political herpes strains gifted to us by the Bush administration, made an appearance on ABC’s This Week to blab about how Team Obama is undoing all the beautiful wickedness she helped Dark Lord Cheney accomplish during the two-term Bush disaster.  As ever, Condi’s eyes stubbornly focused on a point somewhere above the camera and far, far away, as if somewhere in the sub-language labyrinth of her cognizance she realizes just how full of used horse lunch she is. 

On the subject of Iran, Condi quacked her standard loco litany of invective, stating that, “It’s trying to get a nuclear weapon.”  Condi didn’t offer any proof of her statement, and This Week host Christiane Amanpour, a once credible Middle East correspondent, didn’t push her for any.  It was Amanpour, in fact, who fed Condi her Iran-bash straight line by saying that this week the UN's International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) is "about to reveal, apparently, more details showing, apparently, that Iran is trying to weaponize.” (My italics).  Christiane had apparently been reading the apparently unrevised anti-Iran propaganda her print colleagues had polluted the information environment with. 

Fredrick Dahl of Reuters filed a Sunday piece that leads with “The U.N. nuclear watchdog is expected this week to issue its most detailed report yet on research in Iran seen as geared to developing atomic bombs.”  Only near the end of the story does Dahl admit that the report "is not believed to contain an explicit assessment that Iran is developing a nuclear weapons capability” and that a reliable source says the report is unlikely to contain any "smoking guns."   

Dahl notes that although U.S. intelligence agencies stated outright in a 2007 intelligence assessment that Iran had stopped whatever nuclear weapons program it may have had in 2003, “Many conservative experts criticized the 2007 findings as inaccurate and na├»ve.”  Dahl doesn't mention that those “conservative experts” are the very same ones who cooked the intelligence on Iraq.  Dahl also states that, “U.S. intelligence agencies now believe Iranian leaders have resumed closed-door debates over the last four years about whether to build a nuclear bomb.”  Not until his next paragraph do we learn that “U.S. intelligence agencies” consist of Peter Crail of the Arms Control Association, a subsidiary of the ASAN Institute for Policy Studies, a neoconservative tank thinkery that schmoozes Donald Rumsfeld and other prominent warlords of our Era of Persistent Conflict

But the unlimited weight class winner of the Thomas E. Ricks Journalistic Warmongering Award in last Sunday’s round of Iran-related media mendacity was Joby Warwich of the Washington Post.  His headline proclaimed “IAEA says foreign expertise has brought Iran to threshold of nuclear capability,”  and his first sentence warned, “Intelligence provided to U.N. nuclear officials shows that Iran’s government has mastered the critical steps needed to build a nuclear weapon.”

Self-designated UN weapons inspector
David Albright. 
You have to actually read the whole story carefully to glean that nobody actually knows what the IAEA report actually says, and that Warwick’s only actual knowledge of the report’s content actually comes from a PowerPoint presentation on it given by David Albright, who Warwick describes as “a former U.N. weapons inspector who has reviewed the intelligence files” but who is actually a posturing AIPAC propaganda peddler who likely had nothing at all to do with the IAEA inspections of Iran's nuclear facilities.

R.I.P. Shame  

You hear plenty of talk these days about the decline in American morality, and you mostly hear it from the kind of people who chug the Kool-Aid and snort the glue they get from rabid radio and FOX News.  At blame for the decline of our national virtue, according to the self-appointed keepers of our national ethos, are the standard scapegoats: MTV, web porn, liberal judges, Rachel Maddow and so on.  

What nobody seems willing to own up to is that the most immoral acts committed in the New American Century have been the lies that the hegemon’s leaders told that world that led to the deaths of hundreds of thousands of innocents and the abject suffering of untold millions more.  That the lies that support unjust wars keep getting told, and that so many people in our leading institutions continue to help spread them, is the utterly condemning fact of contemporary American culture. 

We haven’t had a firm foothold on the moral high ground since Pearl Harbor.  We started slipping down the slope around the time of the Dresden massacre.  At this point we’re so from being Ronald Reagan’s “shining city on the hill” that I doubt we’ll ever gain the wisdom and enlightenment that we should have possessed before we ascended to the role of sole global superpower.

Update: Double Shame! Triple Shame!

Journo-swine David E. Sanger
The detestable David E. Sanger co-wrote a New York Times story posted on Tuesday afternoon titled “U.N. Finds Signs of Work by Iran Toward Nuclear Device.”

The story began: “United Nations weapons inspectors released a trove of new evidence on Tuesday that they say makes a ‘credible’ case that ‘Iran has carried out activities relevant to the development of a nuclear device’ and that the project may still be under way.”  Sanger and sidekick William J. Broad go on to sketch an ominous picture of the IAEA’s findings which pretty much seem to condemn Iran until you get clear to the first sentence of paragraph bloody twelve, which reads:

The report corroborates the conclusion of a much-debated classified National Intelligence Estimate issued in 2007 that Iran had dismantled a highly focused effort to build a bomb in late 2003.

Great.  Caesars.  Ghost.  What unadulterated, shameless journalistic humbuggery.  That should have been the story’s lead sentence.  It alone refutes everything else in the piece and every other syllable of the last four years of bull roar that’s been flung at Iran about its nuclear intentions.  Sanger and Broad included it to cover their little reporter bottoms when the rest of the story proves to be tripe, but they buried it where nobody would read it so as not to displease their sources in the Pentarchy and hence put their careers with the Newspaper of Record at risk.

Sanger and Broad and the rest of the warmongering mainstream media simply cannot start burning in hell soon enough. They simply cannot.  

Quadruple Shame!

By this morning the Sanger/Broad bull roar piece on the IAEA report had been altered, and the remarks about the 2007 National Intelligence Estimate were promoted to paragraph six.  The key sentence now reads:
The inspectors agreed with a much-debated classified United States National Intelligence Estimate issued in 2007 that Iran had dismantled a highly focused effort to build a bomb in late 2003...
You can see the IAEA report in the raw here.   If you can get past the Guardian's incendiary intro and manage to merely skim the report from head to tail, you'll come away with the strong impression that it's loaded with he said/she said allegations that clearly came from the U.S. and Israel, not from actual scientific inspection.

The ongoing campaign to bully the UN into going along with the anti-Iran strategy seems to have established a permanent base camp in the New York headquarters.  When the neocons and likudniks read the IAEA report their lips must have been moving.  It occurs to me that liberal dog of war Susan Rice, our Ambassador to the UN, is accomplishing things that Revoltin' John Bolton only dreamed of. 

More Update: Hooray for Gareth Porter!

My pal Gareth socked a walk-off four-bagger with his investigative piece on the latest journo-jive on Iran.  The title tells it all: "IAEA’s ‘Soviet Nuclear Scientist’ Never Worked on Weapons."

Kinda shakes your faith in the New York Times and the Washington Post, doesn't it? (Heh.)

You might also want to read the analysis of the cooked IAEA report at Moon of Alabama.

I'll have further choice observations to make on the affair in next Tuesday's column.

Ciao, hounds, and remember: warmongers aren't just right-wing nut cases anymore.  Susan Rice is even word than Condi Rice was.  

Commander Jeff Huber, U.S. Navy (Retired) is author of the critically lauded novel Bathtub Admirals, a lampoon on America’s rise to global dominance.


  1. Bless your heart for taking the US media's assclownery and helping me to laugh at it! I need your humorous take on it because if left to my own devices I start throwing things.

  2. I know how you feel, Nunya. I make it a policy now to only throw things at television sets that are already broken.


  3. If the IAEA report was on Wikipedia it would be full of inline warnings such as "weasel words" and "citation needed."