As Iran becomes a political football in Campaign 2012 – with President Obama and Mitt Romney competing to kick it the hardest and farthest – there is talk about Iran’s failure to meet its “international obligations” but little thought about what that means, notes Danny Schechter.
With U.S. politics locked in a competitive “tough-guy-ism” – as Republicans and Democrats up the ante on punishing Iran to avoid being deemed “weak” or insufficiently “pro-Israel” – no one seems to notice that the tactics are fast becoming an end in themselves, observes ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.
Toeing the neocon line, Mitt Romney denounced Iran as the world’s “most destabilizing nation” despite polls in the Middle East putting Israel and the United States at the top of that list, as Flynt and Hillary Mann Leverett note at www.RaceForIran.com.
Between the shallowness of even the “serious” mainstream news media and the sophistication of political spin, it is no wonder the U.S. public is so thoroughly uninformed and misinformed, observes Danny Schechter.
With tensions again rising in the Persian Gulf, an accident or provocation around the narrow Strait of Hormuz could precipitate a war. In this memo for President Obama, 11 former U.S. intelligence officials urge a U.S.-Iranian system for communications — a “hot line” — in case of crisis.
Exclusive: Mitt Romney took his campaign to Israel with a belligerent speech suggesting that he, as President, would happily support an Israeli war against Iran. In a major foreign policy speech, he also ignored Palestinian rights and repeated some old Mideast canards, reports Robert Parry.
Sweeping assertions by Israeli officials regarding their certainty about the authorship of a bus bombing in Bulgaria last week – pinning it first on Iran and then Hezbollah – may not be backed up by solid intelligence, but it may help rally European condemnation, writes Gareth Porter for Inter Press Service.
Led by Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu, hard-line critics of Iran were quick to jump to a conclusion blaming its operatives for a bus bombing targeting Israeli tourists in Bulgaria. Some Israeli and Western media even cited a speech by Iran’s President Ahmadinejad as proof, but Nima Shirazi exposed the misleading charge.
Exclusive: A decade after the infamous “Downing Street Memo” and its “fixed” intelligence for invading Iraq, the pressure is on again to make the case – whatever the facts – for a new war with Iran. Will the UK’s MI6 and the CIA bend again or hold firm, ask ex-intelligence analysts Annie Machon and Ray McGovern.
In rushing to judgment blaming Iran for a bus bombing in Bulgaria, Israeli officials and neocon writers cited the conventional wisdom about Iran’s authorship of a bombing in Argentina in 1994. However, the investigation of that case was deeply compromised by political pressure, recalls Gareth Porter for Lobelog.