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GOP Congressman Hypes Iran Threat

June 13, 2008

In an emotionally loaded speech before AIPAC, Congressman Mark Kirk, R-Illinois, envisioned a doomsday scenario, justifying increased military presence in the Middle East.

Said Kirk: "Sometimes I've talked about a nightmare morning, where you're brushing your teeth, your cell phone rings, it's your best friend on the phone and says, 'Quick, turn on CNN, turn it on right now, Israel doesn't exist, it was just wiped out in a salvo of missiles.'"

(Written story continues below)

Ignoring the important NIE findings that "Iran will not be technically capable of producing and reprocessing enough plutonium for a weapon before about 2015", Kirk perpetuates the common fallacy that President Ahmadinejad's role in the Iranian hierarchy of power allows him control over military initiatives, and extrapolates that Iran poses an imminent threat.

By contrast, Larry Wilkerson, former Chief of Staff to Colin Powell, told The Real News: "I don't think the President of the United States should be negotiating with President Ahmadinejad. President Ahmadinejad occupies a position in the Iranian hierarchy of power which is largely ceremonial, he is not a very powerful president."

In an interview following Congressman Kirk's inflammatory statements, The Real News' Matt Palevsky takes a look at some of the truth behind the sensationalism. is an independent news network that produces stories of global interest. 

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