Yesh Gvul
Courage To Refuse
Shministim
Pilots
Free The Five
New Profile
Refuser Solidarity Network


Name: Antony Loewenstein
Home: Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
Comment Rules
About Me:
See my complete profile



Google
Web antonyloewenstein.blogspot.com
Sweat-Shop Productions
Sweat-Shop Productions
Sweat-Shop Productions



Blogs

Sites




Previous Posts



Powered by Blogger

 


Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Telling tales

Australia's leading Zionist lobby, AIJAC, has been busy. In the latest edition of their monthly magazine, The Review, one writer claims there are "genocidal tendencies in Iraq and Gaza," anti-Zionism is unquestionably always anti-Semitism, and the UN "is very much broken." Such paranoia and victimhood would usually be the cause of a disadvantaged people, as opposed to an aggressive military power in the Middle East. Of course, it's more politically convenient to be portrayed as the victim rather than the aggressor.

AIJAC's Director of Policy Analysis, Ted Lapkin, contributed to the ABC Perspective program yesterday:

"In 2003, former Assistant Secretary of State Richard Armitage described Lebanon’s Hizbollah movement as the “A-Team” of Islamic terrorism. But twenty years earlier I was fighting as an Israeli army officer against that very enemy.

"Israel serves as a canary in the mineshaft for the democratic world, providing advance warning of threats that later emerge to menace the West. Thus for reasons of pragmatism, as well as principle, Israel should be regarded as a cherished ally in the fight against global jihadism.

"This is a war, and we need all the friends we can get."

Brave, noble Israel is vital in the "War on Terror", or so we're told. Israel's true cost to the West is only now being realised. Take this striking opening from the 2002 Christian Science Monitor:

"Since 1973, Israel has cost the United States about $1.6 trillion. If divided by today's population, that is more than $5,700 per person."

Lapkin prefers to paint a different picture of the Jewish homeland:

"Israel is a progressive Western democracy in a global region that has hitherto been dominated by cultural backwardness and autocratic tyranny. Despite tremendous adversity, Israel has managed to build a first-world nation that combines the political values of liberty with cutting edge technological sophistication."

A "first-world nation" thanks to American largesse and cynical strategic concerns. How long would Israel last without US aid? And does the average American tax-payer know, let alone approve, of how their money is being spent? Don't count on it. The veil is starting to slip.

79 Comments:

Blogger Shabadoo said...

$5700/pp over 32 years comes out to about $180/pp/per annum. Slightly less dramatic when put in context of the rest of the US federal budget, which is an absolute dog's breakfast of overspending from whoa to go.

Why don't you mention Egypt? Now THERE's someplace America shouldn't want one thin dime going to, a first-order cesspool of third-world corruption.

By the way, let's also be fair point out that the CSM article is opening by quoting an economist named Thomas Stauffer, who as someone who works in the oil industry may have his own agenda (i.e., currying favour with anti-Israeli elements in the Middle East).

According to this estimate, Stauffer is off by a factor of 10.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005 10:19:00 am  
Blogger Antony Loewenstein said...

US support for Egypt is equally distasteful and as destructive. But then, the US has a habit of supporting dictatorships around the world.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005 10:23:00 am  
Blogger Shabadoo said...

Hey, we agree on something! Mazel tov!

In the interests of balance and engagement, by the way, here's an interesting piece that begins with Stauffer's figures but then takes things in a different direction.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005 10:26:00 am  
Blogger Ted Lapkin said...

Hey Tony:

A friend of mine drew my attention to the posting on your blog where you make mention of my most recent Radio National appearance. I was tickled pink to see that you take such a profound interest in my work.

I also read your anti-Zionist trope on how Israel is nothing more than a client state of the US, a cat's paw of those evil American imperialists. In response, I thought that a few facts and figures complied by Prof. D. Koller of the Hebrew University might provide a little enlightenment:


The Middle East has been growing date palms for centuries. The average tree is about 18-20 feet tall and yields about 38 pounds of dates a year. Israeli trees are now yielding 400 pounds/year and are short enough to be harvested from the ground or a short ladder Israel, the 100th smallest country, with less than 1/1000th of the world's population, can lay claim to the following:

The cell phone was developed in Israel by Israelis working in the Israeli branch of Motorola, which has its largest development center in Israel.

Most of the Windows NT and XP operating systems were developed by Microsoft-Israel.

The Pentium MMX Chip technology was designed in Israel at Intel. Both the Pentium-4 microprocessor and the Centrino processor were entirely designed, developed and produced in Israel.

The Pentium microprocessor in your computer was most likely made in Israel.

Voice mail technology was developed in Israel.

Both Microsoft and Cisco built their only R&D facilities outside the US in Israel.

The technology for the AOL Instant Messenger ICQ was developed in 1996 by four young Israelis.

According to industry officials, Israel designed the airline industry's most impenetrable flight security. U. S. officials now look to Israel for advice on how to handle airborne security threats.

Israel's $100 billion economy is larger than all of its immediate neighbors combined.

Israel has the highest percentage in the world of home computers per capita.

Israel has the highest ratio of university degrees to the population in the world.

Israel produces more scientific papers per capita than any other nation by a large margin - 109 per 10,000 people --as well as one of the highest per capita rates of patents filed.

In proportion to its population, Israel has the largest number of startup companies in the world. In absolute terms, Israel has the largest number of startup companies than any other country in the world, except the U. S. (3,500 companies mostly in hi-tech).

With more than 3,000 high-tech companies and startups, Israel has the highest concentration of hi-tech companies in the world -- apart from the Silicon Valley, USA

Israel is ranked #2 in the world for venture capital funds right behind the USA

Outside the United States and Canada, Israel has the largest number of NASDAQ listed companies.

Israel has the highest average living standards in the Middle East. The per capita income in 2000 was over $17,500, exceeding that of the UK.

On a per capita basis, Israel has the largest number of biotech startups.

Twenty-four per cent of Israel's workforce holds university degrees -- ranking third in the industrialized world, after the United States and Holland - and 12 per cent hold advanced degrees.

Israel is the only liberal democracy in the Middle East.

In 1984 and 1991, Israel airlifted a total of 22,000 Ethiopian Jews at risk in Ethiopia, to safety in Israel.

When Golda Meir was elected Prime Minister of Israel in 1969, she became the world's second elected female leader in modern times.

When the U. S. Embassy in Nairobi, Kenya was bombed in 1998, Israeli rescue teams were on the scene within a day -- and saved three victims from the rubble.

Israel has the third highest rate of entrepreneurship -- and the highest rate among women and among people over 55 - in the world.

Relative to its population, Israel is the largest immigrant-absorbing nation on earth. Immigrants come in search of democracy, religious freedom, and economic opportunity.

Israel was the first nation in the world to adopt the Kimberly process, an international standard that certifies diamonds as "conflict free."

Israel has the world's second highest per capita of new books.

Israel is the only country in the world that entered the 21st century with a net gain in its number of trees, made more remarkable because this was achieved in an area considered mainly desert.

Israel has more museums per capita than any other country.

Medicine... Israeli scientists developed the first fully computerized, no-radiation, diagnostic instrumentation for breast cancer.

An Israeli company developed a computerized system for ensuring proper administration of medications, thus removing human error from medical treatment. Every year in U. S. hospitals 7,000 patients die from treatment mistakes.

Israel's Givun Imaging developed the first ingestible video camera, so small it fits inside a pill. Used to view the small intestine from the inside, the camera helps doctors diagnose cancer and digestive disorders.

Researchers in Israel developed a new device that directly helps the heart pump blood, an innovation with the potential to save lives among those with heart failure. The new device is synchronized with the heart's mechanical operations through a sophisticated system of sensors.

Israel leads the world in the number of scientists and technicians in the workforce, with 145 per 10,000, as opposed to 85 in the U. S., over 70 in Japan, and less than 60 in Germany. With over 25% of its work force employed in technical professions. Israel places first in this category as well.

A new acne treatment developed in Israel, the ClearLight device, produces a high-intensity, ultraviolet-light-free, narrow-band blue light that causes acne bacteria to self-destruct -- all without damaging surrounding skin or tissue.

An Israeli company was the first to develop and install a large-scale solar-powered and fully functional electricity generating plant, in southern California's Mojave desert.

All the above while engaged in regular wars with an implacable enemy that seeks its destruction, and an economy continuously under strain by having to spend more per capita on its own protection than any other country on earth.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005 11:40:00 am  
Blogger Antony Loewenstein said...

Ted,
Your 'facts' are indeed illuminating and many of them are impressive. Absent, though, is any mention of the ongoing, illegal occupation and the continuing subjegation of another people, the Palestinians. A minor detail, perhaps - for you and your fellow travellers - but rather important to the rest of us.
I look forward to your future articles praising the bravery of armed conflict.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005 12:05:00 pm  
Blogger Wombat said...

"an economy continuously under strain by having to spend more per capita on its own protection than any other country on earth."

Which leads one to wonder how much money could be saved if Israel gave back land that didn't belong to them. Add to that the fact that it also receives more per capita in aid than any country in the world, and I'd say there's some real potnetial there woudn;t you agree?

Tuesday, October 11, 2005 12:41:00 pm  
Blogger Ibrahamav said...

If the US had invested 1.6 trillion in Israel, it would have been the best investment the US ever made.

But they didn't make it. The monitary figure was just a figment of the reporters imagination based on what he thought the cost of Arab blackmail of the US was worth.

Rather than take it as a reason to distrust the Arab nations, the antisemite tried to turmn it around on the Jews.

Typical, and typically ignored by most except neo-nazis, white supremists, holocaust deniers, islamo-fascists and their helpers, witting or not.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005 1:19:00 pm  
Blogger asdfsdafsda said...

Damn, Ibrashit, your lying ass is everywhere isn't it. Well of course you don't think that you are an evil liar (evil people never think they are evil to paraphrase your stupid ass) but you are.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005 1:29:00 pm  
Blogger Wombat said...

So Ibrahamav,

For the record, what is that figure? For you to be assured that it was NOT 1.6 trillion, you must have a number that you know to be true.

With all due repsects, I have asked you for your sources before and I have yet to see them, so as hey say in Oz, put up or shut up.

The US gives Israel US$15 million a day. This is not a fignment of anyone's imaination - it is listed as part of US to Israel. I'm not sure if tha tinclouded military aid.

I also does not include the fact that Egypt is the second highest recipient, as an incentive for Egypt to maintain cordial relations with Israel. If this maintains the peace, then I consider it monmey far better spent than on some insane war. You may choose to call this Arab blackmail - so be it. I'm certainly not blaming the Jews for this arranggement.

On top of that, the 7000 settlers that were moved out of Gaza have been alloted at least US$250 thousand per family, which was put up by the US. Whether this has been paid yet or not I don't know, but when you consider the fact that the displaced of New Orleans are barely able to feed themselves, it's certainly a pretty generous offer.

Please for the sake of civilised debate, cease this laborious use of antisemite, islamo-fascist, white supremicist and nazi slurs. Save it for when it is really appropriate.

I know you can do it Ibraham av.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005 1:40:00 pm  
Blogger Ibrahamav said...

asdfasdffdsafdsa - LOL.

Addamo - The figures are available to you. Do your own work. As for New Orleans, I don't see the US government doing all it can, so you can't fault the paltry funds given to Israel.

How many families are 7000 settlers? Why didn't you use that figure for the 250,000 instead of attempting to plant the 7000 figure?

As for ceasing the laborious use of antisemite, islamo-fascist, white supremicist and nazi slurs, do your part by not using information that is easily available from those sites.

Everyone knows the 1.6 trillion figure was so much BS with a deliberate antisemitic bias.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005 2:09:00 pm  
Blogger Comical_Ali said...

We here allot of rambling about US "aid" to Israel, but what we dont hear is that most of the money Israel recieves is on a loan basis. We also dont hear about how Israel gives the Palestinians US$ 1 billion a year -- so that already subtracts a large portion of the so called US "aid ment for Israel".

We also dont hear about how Egypt recieves $ US 2.5 billion a year or Jordan which recieves 1.5 billion a year. And how much of that goes to their Palestinian borthers? No prizes for second guessing.

Egypt and Jordan - two countries who have been extremley hostile to America and her interests -( constantly voting against US policies in the UN, ever since its formation in 47 is but one example). America gets nothing (no technological productivity, or development) but complete hostility for its money. yet these countries aint far behind Israel when it comes to getting US tax payer money - and in many respects, as explained, end up getting more of it.

And hell that doesnt include all the Soviet aid they and the PLO recieved in the cold war

Tuesday, October 11, 2005 2:28:00 pm  
Blogger Comical_Ali said...

"Which leads one to wonder how much money could be saved if Israel gave back land that didn't belong to them."

and imagine how money, time and lives would have been saved if the Arabs finally gave up their genocidal ambitions?

Tuesday, October 11, 2005 2:34:00 pm  
Blogger Edward Mariyani-Squire said...

Ted Lapkin said...
"a few facts and figures"

...and don't forget the unemployment rate of about 10.7%.

There's an explanation of course. As Israel's Finance Ministry puts it:

"This appreciable increase in the participation rate in 2003, especially in the fourthquarter, explains why the unemployment rate rose even though more Israelis were employed.
...The number of Israeli employed increased by 2.0 percent (46,000 persons) in 2003 relative to 2002 and the number of non-Israeli workers declined by 8.5 percent (22,600). Total employment (including non-Israelis) increased by 1 percent (23,000).

[Non-Israelis? Gee - I wonder who they could be talking about.]

The downturn in the employment of non-Israelis [*cough*Palestinians*cough*] shows that the Government’s policy of reducing the number of foreign workers [*cough*Palestinians*cough*] is being implemented successfully. This success is unquestionably one of the reasons for the increase in the employment of Israelis."

Ahh - racism by stealth. If that's not a kosher labour-market reform in response to an unacceptably high unemployment rate, I don't know what is.


Comical_Ali said...
"and imagine how money, time and lives would have been saved if the Arabs finally gave up their genocidal ambitions?"

...AND the Israeli army and the illegal settlers pulled up stumps and simply went home, built a Great Wall along it's actual, internationally recognied borders, and lived the Good Life. Like Theodor Herzl, we can all dream of freedom.


Ibrahamav said...
"Typical, and typically ignored by most except neo-nazis, white supremists, holocaust deniers, islamo-fascists and their helpers, witting or not.

I take it that this is pretty much covers the entire international community. Now there's a persecution complex to be proud of. You should take a look at the new book by that neo-nazi, white supremist, holocaust denier, islamo-fascist Jacqueline Rose - The Question of Zion. It may help you understand yourself ('may' is the operative word here).

Tuesday, October 11, 2005 5:17:00 pm  
Blogger boredinHK said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005 5:18:00 pm  
Blogger Glenn Condell said...

Ah Ted, Zen master of the one-note, one-sided Likudnik polemic; the relentless voice of insanity. Takes me back. Did you get a woody writing that list?

Tuesday, October 11, 2005 5:31:00 pm  
Blogger anthony said...

Ted, excellent points. Much appreciated. I for one get hard just reading the points, Glenn.

I think I've read a few articles by Koller, probably in Israel Affairs- you said he compiled the facts, are these published?

Tuesday, October 11, 2005 5:34:00 pm  
Blogger Ted Lapkin said...

Edward:

It's true that the unemployment rate is high. But it's coming down. The bursting of the tech bubble in 2000 really hurt the Israeli hi-tech sector, and that pain was compounded by the drop in tourism after Arafat led the Palestinians to war in September of that year.

And actually, I would guess that the reference to non-Israelis relates to the foreign guest workers from places like Thailand who replaced Palestinians after the shooting war broke out. And yes, the Israeli government is trying to reduce the number of foreign guest workers in order to boost employment of its own citizens.

Why is it 'racism' for a country to adopt policies that are designed to reduce the unemployment of its own population? Seems to me that the first responsibility of a government is to its own people, not to foreigners. And governments throughout the world implement policies for precisely that reason. Your resort to that favourite epithet of the Left - 'racism' - reflects the paucity of substance in your argument.

And as for the 'internationally recognized border' that you mention, you can't be referring to the Green Line along the West Bank, can you? As a matter of historical fact, the Green Line never constituted more than a mere cease fire line because the Arabs refused to make peace with Israel at the end of the 1948-49 War. The Arabs explicitly said that the wouldn't recognize the permanence of the cease fire lines because that would involve recognizing Israel. You see, they wanted to retain the option of waging future wars to eradicate Israel when opportunity knocked, so to speak.

So the frontier between pre-1967 Israel and the West Bank is not an 'internationally recognized border' as I think you contend. And the reason why is the same reason why this conflict has endured: a recalcitrant Arab unwillingness to accept the right of a soverign Jewish state to exist alongside 20 or so Arab states - including a state of Palestine.

Glenn:

Why is irrefutable evidence of Israeli economic success a 'one-sided Likudnik polemic?' The thing is, many of the movers and shakers of the Israeli economic scene are Labour Party voters who wouldn't vote Likud if you paid them.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005 6:34:00 pm  
Blogger leftvegdrunk said...

Ted, I think the article you posted does indeed show that Israel is a nation state in its own right. None could deny the achievements listed here. And many of them are news to me, I admit, particularly in the technology arena.

If we are talking about the role of Israel in Palestine, though, then we are not only dealing with conceptions of Israeli statehood in the sense of civil society. Instead, our focus should be on the direction, intent, and funding of Israel's military and foreign policies.

Ted, I'll try to illustrate my point with a local example. I am not sure what Waterton is studying at present, but perhaps he can back me up when I contend that the topic of independence in foreign affairs is a matter often discussed in the Australian context. Is Australia following its own path? How can we demonstrate that it is either multilateral or unilateral? Does history demonstrate a pattern of independence or of subservience to another power? Where are the similarities and differences in the policy directions advanced by each side of parliamentary politics?

If you wanted to argue that Australia was independent in foreign policy and not simply a puppet of London or Jakarta or wherever, it would be erroneous to cite the number of national parks or museums as evidence of this independence.

In the same way, showing that Israel has achieved a great many things in a number of spheres is immaterial to the question of whether its foreign policy is subject to the approval, funding, or direction of another power.

No doubt, Ted, your bullet points are indeed valid to a general discussion of the role - and contribution - of Israel in the world. In the context of its military endeavours in Palestine, though, and its foreign policy in general, they are immaterial. What do you have to say about the foreign policy of Israel - its government, not its scientists or business people - and the suggestion made by Antony that much of Israel's military activity is underwritten by a foreign power? What are the implications of this for the sustainability of the Israeli state and its role in the region?

Tuesday, October 11, 2005 6:44:00 pm  
Blogger leftvegdrunk said...

"Valid to"? Sorry, all. Make that either "valid within" or "pertinent to".

Tuesday, October 11, 2005 6:46:00 pm  
Blogger Ted Lapkin said...

Dirt Bike:

The laundry list of economic and high tech achievements was adduced in response to Tony's erroneous assertion that Israel was entirely dependent upon American budgetary largess.

The foreign policy question is another matter, although of course they are in some ways related.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005 7:14:00 pm  
Blogger leftvegdrunk said...

Fair enough.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005 7:39:00 pm  
Blogger J F said...

Great comment, Glenn. Did you get a woody while writing about Ted getting a woody?

Tuesday, October 11, 2005 8:56:00 pm  
Blogger Comical_Ali said...

"You should take a look at the new book by that neo-nazi, white supremist, holocaust denier, islamo-fascist Jacqueline Rose - The Question of Zion. It may help you understand yourself ('may' is the operative word here)."

Or rather you and the extreme leftist mindset -- thus one would be able to grasp just how much pseudo-scienctific theory and culture has penetrated those who subscribe to your ideology not to mention extreme fetish for Israel

Zionism and "pshychoanalysis"...or was it "psyhco anal-ysis," anyone?

Tuesday, October 11, 2005 9:06:00 pm  
Blogger Comical_Ali said...

"Great comment, Glenn. Did you get a woody while writing about Ted getting a woody?"

Thats right the Zionists made Glenn do it.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005 9:08:00 pm  
Blogger Mannie said...

One item left out of the list of Israeli achievements is its nuclear capability. Now you may notice that whenever issues arise about North Korea and Iran and nuclear development and the UN and the IAEA, Israel is NEVER mentioned.
Also, one has to ask - if Israel is such a great democracy and has no anti-semitism in it, isn't it every zionist's dream to go home to the motherland? After all, there is plenty of anti-semitism in Australia, and South Africa, and the UK, and the USA. I know because I have lived and worked in and visited these countries, and if all the Jews outside Israel are going to be killed in the next Holocaust, shouldn't we all move to the safety and security of Israel?

Wednesday, October 12, 2005 1:13:00 am  
Blogger Ibrahamav said...

Israel is never mentioned because Israel is not an actual threat to any Arab nation.

Israel's weaponry is for retaliation and the occasional pre-emptive strike. As all of the pre-emptive strikes have been well justified. It seems that Israel is a peaceful country, dedicated to peace, unlike it's Arab neighbors.

Yes, Jews should move to Israel, and Israel should cease the practice of importing foreign labor and palestinian labor.

But it is not up to me to dictate to Jews nor the Government of Israel.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005 1:27:00 am  
Blogger Wombat said...

"Israel's weaponry is for retaliation and the occasional pre-emptive strike."

What a contradiction and what an extreme example of selective reasoning.

Israel is the only country in the middle east with nuclear weapons. Last count was more thn 200.

Israel is the only country in the world that blatantly reserves the right to conduct assasinations both locally and overseas.

Every day it seems, Israel is pushing the US to attack Iran, even though it has been unable to prove that Iran is anywhere near capable of developing nuclear weapons or even intends to.

Israel continues to make ludicrous claims that Iran is 6 months away from a nuclear bomb while the rest of the world says this is unliekly within a decade.
How hypocritical can they be? They demand that the world take action against Iran while refucing to even acknowledge their won nuclear stockpiles, let allone, allow nuclear inspections of it's facilities or agree to the terms of the NPT.

Dick Cheney himself has stated that there is a danger Israel will act unilaterally and attack Iran if the US doesn't do so first. Doesn't sound very peaceful to me.

Israel is such a peaceful country that it even attacked it's closest ally, the US when it bombed the USS Liberty during the 1967 six day war, killing 34 US sailors and injuring 172. By any standards, that would be considered an act of war.

Israel has been repteadtly caught spying or cuducting clandestine inetlligence activities in countries that are strong allies. We recently saw this in new Zealand, the Franklin/AIPAC spy scandal in Washingon. Not to mention the Pollard affair.

Israel was undoubtedly one of the biggest advocates for the invasion of Iraq. Karen Kwiatkowski, a Lt. Colonel workign for he Office of Special Plans prior to he invasion reported that Israeli Generals were allowed to walk into Pentagon and had unfetted acces to the Office of Douglas Feith, they were the only people who weren't required to be signed into the Pentagon.

An Israeli defense minister is quoted as saying that it was in Israel's intersts that Iraq be fractured into smaller sub-states.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005 2:09:00 am  
Blogger Ibrahamav said...

The palestinians, Iranians, Iraqis and lybians, among other States, have commited assasinations both domestic and Internationally. But only Israel? And you deny being a racist? Ready to fall on your toothpick?

The Liberty incident has been conclusively and exhaustively been proven to be an accident at a time of war. Except for racists like you and the poor misguided americans led by the nose in search for an answer that doesn't exist. But of course, you need to look up an unfortunate event from 40 years ago to prove a nonexistant fact.

While Iraq being fragmented helps every single middle eastern people except the Palestinians, you can only fault israel?

And spying? Israel spys to deflect blackmail used to protect its citizens, not to damage the US. But a racist like you doesn't understand that.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005 4:49:00 am  
Blogger Wombat said...

How do you presume to know if I'm a racist? You're assumptions are a blatant smokescreen and the sign of a desperate and flimsy argument. I have been the subject of racism on many occasions my friend, so you do not have exclusiove rights to being the victim of discrimination.

I said Israel is the only country that proclaims a right to do assainate people. Many countries have commited murder yes, but that is different ot formalisaing as a state policy. They have said they even reerve rtheright to assainate individuals inside countries like the US and Australia. It would appear that Israel holds such contempt for international law that they feel it is their perogative.

The Liberty investigation was a Whitewash and you know it. The victims are still pushing for a formal inquiry into the affair, which has been blocked repeatedly. How can you claim it was a "mistake" and keep a straight face? Israeli gunboast came within 50 feet of the Liberty, which was attacker over a period of 3 hours. Are you telling me the IDF were close enough to bullseye the ship repeatedly and yet fail to notice the US flags, or the large indentification signs on the side of the ship or the fact that the sailors on board reported that as they waved to the IDF pilots whoi flew by, they got close enough to see their faces? Talk about propaganda!!

Do you still believe in the tooth fairy?

I quoted that an Israeli political representative was quote as saying that splitting Iraq would be beneficial to Israel, because it suggests this was part of Israeli foreign policy.

The Frankling affair had nothing to do with blackmail of Israeli citizens, but passing on classified information to AIPAC in regards to the US's plans for military action against Iran. And I noticed you make no mention of the fact that Israel has threaned strikes agains Iran if the US don't do it first.

The Pollard affair led to the deaths of over 70 US agents inside the USSR and Pollard has been quoted as saying that the US is an entitiy to be used up and discarded by Israel. That's seriosu damage by anyone's standards. This is a man who is revered by extremists in Israel, who have lobbied for years for his release.

I know such facts can be inconvenient, but if you hope to cucessfully champion Israel's cause, you need to start by at least aknowledging Israels sims.

And stop calling everyone who disagrees with you a racist or and anti-semite.

And BTW. Iraq being fragmented does not help the Iraqi's much seeing as it will most likely be proceeded by a civial war.

Guess you consider Iraqi's small change, but then again, it takes a racsit to know one right?

Wednesday, October 12, 2005 5:47:00 am  
Blogger Ibrahamav said...

You must have a limited intellectual capacity to think that only a racist can recognize a racist. So sad for you.

The Franklin affair had everything to do with lying about a life and death issue to tempt jews to warn Israel about it. But a racist like you discounts things like that. So sad for you.

What makes you think the Palestine, egypt, Lybia, Syria do not have assasination as state policy? because you can't find it written? So sad for you.

The 70 dead are the result of another American spy who was able to deflect it on to Pollard, but it has since boomeranged. Too bad for you. Know one knows what Pollard did as the evidence is still secret. Which means you don't know. So sad for you.

Your non-facts merely betray your racist outlook. You only want them to be facts because it would support your racism. So sad for you.

Disagree with me doesn't make you a racist. But your particular disagreements prove you to be a racist and antisemite. As if you didn't know that. So sad for you.

Iraqi fragmentation will help prevent a civil war, not that the lives lost mean much to a racist like you. So sad for you.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005 6:15:00 am  
Blogger Wombat said...

I do not wish to fight with you Ibrahamav,

If I have offended you, please accept my appologies. Nothing will come out of taking this debate any further.

I have never had a problem with Jewish people, or Israel or people of any race faith or demonistation. I do reserve the right to oppose some aspects of Israel foreign policy because of how it impactsa on human rights issues. I do not accept that this makes me antismitic.

I am curious about one thing. Are you seriously trying to educate people over what you know to be true, or are you convinced that you are surrounded by enemys?

Someone suggested that you get booted off the forum because they find your posts offensive. I argued against that suggestion because I feel you have as much right to remain on it as much as anyone.

The least you could do is treat myself and other with repsect if you expect the same.

Peace to you.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005 7:05:00 am  
Blogger Ibrahamav said...

Your opposition crosses the line of reasonable debate and is firmly planted in a base of antisemitism. That you can't see it is not my problem. But it is there.

I will certainly treat you as you treat me.

I also oppose aspects of Israeli domestic and international policy. I am upset with the treatment of Arab Israelis as second class citizens. I am upset with the religious communities welfare system and exemption from military service. I am upset with the beduin situation.

I am also upset with the extreme care that the IDF takes with an avowed enemy.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005 7:11:00 am  
Blogger Wombat said...

OK so hopefully we understand each other better.

It is refreshing to see you aknowledge some of the ills of the conflict.

Please let us agree that in future we will not allow our debates to become so heated. Impassioned yes, but there is no reason to be destructive.

There is clearly things I can learn from you and I hope visa versa.

I firmly believe you will more successfully reach people if you do give them the benefit of the doubt however. If people are anti-semitic, racist or white supremacists, they will reveal themselves with time. It's not too much to give people a secind chance right?

You will rarely get to see the good in others when you get them on the defensive.

Peace to you.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005 7:27:00 am  
Blogger Comical_Ali said...

"One item left out of the list of Israeli achievements is its nuclear capability. Now you may notice that whenever issues arise about North Korea and Iran and nuclear development and the UN and the IAEA, Israel is NEVER mentioned."

simple Iran and North Korea both signed a non-proliferation treaty and are therefore obliged to keep it. Israel (though never officially acknowledging that they have nukes) never signed one. They were not prepared to committ to an international treaty and than break it like Iran or North Korea. As signortaries to the non-proliferation treaty, they made themselves committed and fair game to IAEA inspections. Israel has not.

And These countries, unlike Israel have also threatened (many a time) to use their WMD against other countries.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005 8:04:00 am  
Blogger Comical_Ali said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005 8:04:00 am  
Blogger Wombat said...

"And These countries, unlike Israel have also threatened (many a time) to use their WMD against other countries."

Yes Iran has made noises about taking out Israel, but unless the country subscribes to a doctrine of mass suicide, I think it's safe to assume this amounts to little more than false bravado.

As for nuclear strikes, Iran is hardly in a position to use weapons they don't have against Israel.

What do we know?

1. Israel has stated that if the US does not do something about Iran's nuclear weapons program (that they insist exists is sic months from producing a nuclear bomb) that they will take care of it themselves.

2. The sites that the US and Israel allege violates the NPT regulations are located deep underground, and can only be dstroyed by nuclear bunker buster bombs.

3. Israel has taken delivery of these bunker buster bmbs from the US.

Using these weapons would lead to dealy radioactive fallout being spread of vast areas. A Pentagon report included a scenerio that coudl lead to the short and long term deaths of 1 million people.

I can provide links to all of the above.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005 8:42:00 am  
Blogger Comical_Ali said...

"Yes Iran has made noises about taking out Israel, but unless the country subscribes to a doctrine of mass suicide, I think it's safe to assume this amounts to little more than false bravado."

Well I think Israel as well as the US, EU and rest of the world is right to take Iran for its word.

"As for nuclear strikes, Iran is hardly in a position to use weapons they don't have against Israel."

they are currently in the process of developing those weapons and thats why the international community is making such a big noise

Wednesday, October 12, 2005 9:39:00 am  
Blogger Wombat said...

"they are currently in the process of developing those weapons and thats why the international community is making such a big noise"

That is completely and utterly false. I am a former nucelar engineer who used to deal with NPT and Nuclear safeguard issues, so trust me, I know what I am talking about.

Iran is not in violation of the NPT in any way. They have permitted the most invasive inspections of any country in history and come up 100% clean. That the US and Israel are arguing otherwise is incidental, especially given the so called "intellignce failures" of the Iraq war. Make no mistaje about it, this is a smokescreen behind which lies that real motivation of the US - regime change.

Iran is demanding that it be permitted to implement a complete fule cycle as part of their own nculear power program, which they are 100% entitled to under the NPT? In fact, under the NPT, the internatinal community is obliged to help Iran on doing so.

The CIA has stated that if they were to begin now, Iran would not be able to produce nuclear bomb grade enriched uranium in under 10 years. This has been supported by a number of reports.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005 10:09:00 am  
Blogger Comical_Ali said...

what they are making far exceeds the amount necessary for simple civilian use and is in clear breach of the non proliferation treaty to which they bound themselves. This is simple common knowledge which even the Iranians accept -- a country which has even gone on to justify this clear breach by saying that there "shouldnt be a nuclear apartheid."

at the end of the day its all very well and conveniant for you to say "Yes Iran has made noises about taking out Israel, but unless the country subscribes to a doctrine of mass suicide, I think it's safe to assume this amounts to little more than false bravado."

Wednesday, October 12, 2005 10:51:00 am  
Blogger Wombat said...

What are they "making" Comical_Ali? they are getting their fuel from Russia. Do you actually know, or did you read that on the Haretz web site?

In October 2003, Iran entered into an agreement with Britain, France, and Germany (E3) with the "explicit expectation of opening a new chapter of full transparency, cooperation and access to nuclear and other advanced technologies."

Iran agreed to a number of important transparency and voluntary confidence building measures, including the voluntary suspension of all uranium-enrichment related activities.

In November, 2003, IAEA Director-General Elbaradei reported that "to date, there is no evidence that the previously undeclared nuclear material and activities … were related to a nuclear weapons program."

In November, 2004, ElBaradei reported that "all the declared nuclear material in Iran has been accounted for, and therefore such material is not diverted to prohibited activities."

So, that same month, under the so-called Paris Agreement, Iran voluntarily extended the negotiations with the E3 and the suspension of uranium-enrichment activities.

Note, Iran did not have to do this. I

But, Iran made it clear that any attempt to turn their voluntary suspension of uranium enrichment activities into a cessation or long-term suspension would be "incompatible with the letter and spirit of the Paris Agreement and therefore unacceptable to Iran."

The E3 didn’t get around to submitting their proposal to the Iranians until August 8, 2005, it did explicitly require Iran "not to pursue fuel cycle activities other than the construction and operation of light-water power and research reactors".

It is the E3 – NOT the Iranians – who have not only "violated" the Paris Agreement, but the NPT, as well.

Everyone know that the US is effectively strong arming the Board of the IAEA into disgracefully making Iran's "violation" of the Paris Agreement the rationale for referring Iran's Safeguarded nuclear programs to the UN Security Council as a "threat to international peace and security."

The US and the UK tried the same trick with Iarq. They tried to trip up Sadam by proposing terms for inspections that they were convinced Iraq would not accept, and when Sadam did, they turned around and insisted he was playing games with them.

even if iran were making their own fuel, they can make all the fuel they want for nuclear power, but it is apples and oranges compared to what they would need to produce nuclear bomb material.

Here's a lesson for you. Nuclear fuel requires the uranium to be 3-4% U235 (97% U238). A nuclear bomb require the purity to be 99% pure. U235 is less that 2% abundant in uranium ore, so to get to 99% U235 purity is insanely difficult and the equipemnt to making this possible would be incredibly easy to track.

It is interesting that you choose to believe the Iranians when they are making threats about Israel, but accuse them otherwise.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005 11:38:00 am  
Blogger Comical_Ali said...

What are they "making" Comical_Ali?

cake.

i dont have time to read your treatise. All I can say is even the Iranians disagree with you about what they are up to. They actually came clean -- otherwise they wouldnt have been complaining about "nuclear apartheid". very simple. so spare yourself from devoting another thesis on the subject

Wednesday, October 12, 2005 12:36:00 pm  
Blogger Edward Mariyani-Squire said...

Ted Lapkin said...
"Edward:
It's true that the unemployment rate is high. But it's coming down. The bursting of the tech bubble in 2000 really hurt the Israeli hi-tech sector, and that pain was compounded by the drop in tourism after Arafat led the Palestinians to war in September of that year."


Yes, the rate is coming down VERY slowly. I think it was about 9.1% in April. But if you were right about the source of the rise in the U rate, this in itself indicates a disturbing degree of dynamic inefficiency. A hit to the tech sector in 2000 ... and FIVE YEARS LATER the U rate is still at unacceptably high levels? AND THEN the eventual response is a quasi-demographic one - boot out the immigrants - rather than a serious macro-focused solution. This suggests something is going quite wrong.

But anyway, the high U rate has been a long time in the making, and probably can't be written of as just a tech market blip. The longer-run trend has been upwards since 1996-7, as you can see here (from the B of I):

31/12/1996 - 6.6
31/12/1997 - 7.5
31/12/1998 - 8.6
31/12/1999 - 8.9
31/12/2000 - 8.8
31/12/2001 - 9.3
31/12/2002 - 10.3
31/12/2003 - 10.7
31/12/2004 - 10.4

I'm not sure the tech-sector blip is does never much explanatory work here at all in fact. If we compare this with Australia, we might have expected to see a similar sort of affect, given that 'services' make up a large proportion of output (larger in percentage terms even than Israel), but not a sausage.

(As for this amusing line,
"...after Arafat led the Palestinians to war"
I assume you simultaneously mean "...after September 2000 when Sharon and his entourage of machine-gunnists, in a move that even the blindest ideologue could see was specifically intended to kick-off a second intifada, walked in to the al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem, swanned around for a bit, shot seven Palestinians and swanned off.")

"And actually, I would guess that the reference to non-Israelis relates to the foreign guest workers from places like Thailand who replaced Palestinians after the shooting war broke out."

Actually, why guess? The immigration data for Israel shows no move away from trend in 2000. Indeed after 2000 immigration growth was negative, rather than positive as your explanation implies. The most plausible explanation then, in the absence of the exact demographic data desired, is that the people being booted are Palestinian 'non-Israelis'.

Why is it 'racism' for a country to adopt policies that are designed to reduce the unemployment of its own population?"

It is racist when it is done on a racial basis. It's not complicated. Does the average Arab have the same chance of becoming a member of the citizenry of the secular modern state of Israel? No. Why? Race. This of course has immediate implications for a policy of "kick out the immigrants - they're taking our jobs" because "the immigrants" by definition cannot be racially-Jewish - and of course we all know that "kicking out the immigrants" must in practical terms end up meaning "kick out the Arabs". This is discrimination on the basis of race and nothing more - and that is what we like to call racism. More than anywhere I would have thought you would be familiar with the notion of racism by now (both in its overt and covert forms).

"Seems to me that the first responsibility of a government is to its own people, not to foreigners."

How very nineteenth century of you. No - there are principles of human rights and dignity that transcend the welfare of a particular citizenry. That has been well known for much of the 20th century. I know there are those who subscribe to the notion that the will of the majority must over-ride all other notions of morality, but those people seem to thereby sanction terrible evil. That, I think, is to be avoided by moral beings and moral states.

"And governments throughout the world implement policies for precisely that reason."

My only response to this is a slightly embarrassed: argumentum ad populum.

"Your resort to that favourite epithet of the Left - 'racism' - reflects the paucity of substance in your argument."

Huh? I thought discriminating against people on the basis of their race was at least in part what racism meant. It doesn't entail that?

"And as for the 'internationally recognized border' that you mention... "

Look, I can appreciate the humour of your idea that Israel effectively has NO borders, but seriously, I going to go with, say, the Central Intelligence Agency of the U.S.A. which outlines the borders it reckons exist:

"Egypt 266 km, Gaza Strip 51 km, Jordan 238 km, Lebanon 79 km, Syria 76 km, West Bank 307 km."

Basically, when you look at a standard atlas, if its got another country's name on it, then that's not Israel. If it has "occupied territory" written on it, then that's not Israel either. Only that bit of the map that has just plain "Israel" written on it is Israel.

"You see, they wanted to retain the option of waging future wars to eradicate Israel when opportunity knocked, so to speak."...etc.

You'd have to be a lobotomised Rip Van Winkle to believe the geo-politics of the Middle East is anything like it was waaaaay back in 1973. It sounds like a paranoid delusion: "The Arabs are everywhere ... they pretend they want peace, by I can see into their secret black hearts ... no matter what they say, no matter what they do, it all proves - PROVES I tells ya! - that they mean to destroy us ... but we will be vigilent, we will be ready when no-one else will against these sneaky demonic Arabs ... Always the Threat, Always the Danger, Forever and Ever, Armen."

This isn't racist either, I imagine. It's "just the facts", hey Ted?

Wednesday, October 12, 2005 12:57:00 pm  
Blogger Wombat said...

"All I can say is even the Iranians disagree with you about what they are up to. They actually came clean -- otherwise they wouldnt have been complaining about "nuclear apartheid". very simple. so spare yourself from devoting another thesis on the subject."

Great. Please send me a link to your informati. I'd be interested in seeing the confession.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005 1:29:00 pm  
Blogger Ian Westmore said...

Ibrahamav said...

Israel's weaponry is for retaliation and the occasional pre-emptive strike.

Israel's nukes are for "pre-emptive" strikes. Pre-emptive strikes violate a number of international treaties that Israel subscribes to, so such a use would be a war crime. I wonder if the Nuremberg court buildings still stand. Wouldn't it be ironic is they were used again to try Israeli war criminals?

Addamo_01 said...

2. The sites that the US and Israel allege violates the NPT regulations are located deep underground, and can only be dstroyed by nuclear bunker buster bombs.

3. Israel has taken delivery of these bunker buster bmbs from the US.


The US has supplied Israel with "nuclear bunker buster bombs"? If true that would be an extremely serious violation of the NTP! Why hasn't the IAEA bought America's actions to the attention of the UN Security Council? Because not even George W would be so stupid, perhaps?

Wednesday, October 12, 2005 3:21:00 pm  
Blogger Wombat said...

"The US has supplied Israel with "nuclear bunker buster bombs"? If true that would be an extremely serious violation of the NTP!"

I suppose because Israel is not a signatory of the NPT and the US totally disregards it anyway. Perhaps this is the real reason why iran complained about "nuclear apartheid"?

I'm sure you would agree this takes US hypocrisy to a whole new level.

Here are some sources:

U.S. may sell bunker busters to Israel
Proposed deal raises concerns about Israeli strike on Iranhttp://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/7646107/

US to sell bunker bombs to Israel
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/4493443.stm

http://www.f-16.net/f-16_news_article1198.html
Israel plans to acquire BLU-109 "Bunker Busters" bombs

http://www.littlegreenfootballs.com/weblog/?entry=15645_Israel_Gets_Bunker_Busters&only=yes
wednesday, april 27, 2005
WASHINGTON - The Bush administration has authorized the sale of as many as 100 large bunker-buster bombs to Israel. One expert said the move should serve as a warning to Iranians with nuclear ambitions.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005 3:31:00 pm  
Blogger Wombat said...

Sorry correction.

I should qualify that my sources do not specify whether the bombs are nuclear, but it has been reported that Iran's underground facilities are inpenetrable to conventional ground penetrating weapons.

My guess is that seeing as Israel does have an exisiting nuclear capability and technology sharing agreements with the US, they may be able to modify these weapons with their own nucelar warheads.

Again, that is an unproven assumption on my part only.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005 3:37:00 pm  
Blogger Comical_Ali said...

For me threatning to take out Israel is a free admission of what they are up to -- and something which you call " a little more than false bravado."

Wednesday, October 12, 2005 4:01:00 pm  
Blogger Wombat said...

"For me threatening to take out Israel is a free admission of what they are up to -- and something which you call " a little more than false bravado.""

Public figures make stupid statements all the time. This week, Pat Robertson again called for the assaination of Hugo Chavez (after appologisig for doing it the first time). Last week Bill O'Reilly of Fox called the assasination of Bashar al-Assad.

taken at face value, these are crimes and both men shold be indicted, but we allknow they wont be becasue they are taken in jest to be the ramblings of men whoare tryng to bolster their image and draw attention to themselves.

Not such a difficult concept to fathom is it comical_ali?

And seriosuly, do you seriously believe any country would undertake an act that would lead to it's own innevitable annihilation?

Israel wont let it ever come to that and neither will the US.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005 4:09:00 pm  
Blogger Comical_Ali said...

time after time the Iranian president and Mullahs have threatened to take out Israel.

Pat robinson and Bill Oreilly are not heads of state or government officials representing official US policy. They also arent threatening entire countries and all out war.

"an seriosuly, do you seriously believe any country would undertake an act that would lead to it's own innevitable annihilation?"

Iran should be taken for its word, and if her government make these sorts of statements they have to live and deal with the consequences. What they are developing alone is already in breach of a treaty which they signed - even if it is for "civilian purposes.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005 4:16:00 pm  
Blogger anthony said...

An Israeli defense minister is quoted as saying that it was in Israel's intersts that Iraq be fractured into smaller sub-states.

Addamo,

While I trust you are truthful in your statement, this MK you speak of clearly does not reflect the interests of Israel. A broken Iraq is not in Israel’s best interests, as it would lead to an independent Kurdish state, in turn leading to a decline in Israel-Turkish relations (because such a state, would of course, effect Turkey’s own Kurdish minority and territorial integrity, and blame would naturally rest with Israel and the US). Israel would not sacrifice its relatively excellent relationship with Turkey in the hopes that a future relationship with a potential Kurdish state (this would be an inevitable part of a divided Iraq) would reap greater benefits than its friendship with Turkey.

Instead of following precedent at this blog and giving you a rubbish website to look at, I shall refer you to an academic journal - see, Efraim Inbar, ‘The Resilience of Israeli-Turkish Relations’, in Israel Affairs vol.11, no.4, October 2005, pp.591-607.

Please do not play the same tune and label this part of the Zionist controlled Israeli academic (interestingly the same sphere of society to produce the likes of Benny Morris), its like watching Ground Hog Day twice in a row- it gets old, very fast.

Guess you consider Iraqi's small change, but then again, it takes a racsit to know one right?

You seem to imply that Israel’s foreign policy is causing the deaths of so many Iraqis- last time I checked, most deaths in Iraq result from Iraqi madness.

As for nuclear strikes, Iran is hardly in a position to use weapons they don't have against Israel.

I’m guessing you’ll agree that all nations have a responsibility to refuse to allow Iran to even near such a position, then, especially after you claimed that Iran is willing to take out Israel and subscribes to a doctrine of mass suicide. (You later contradict yourself and say …do you seriously believe any country would undertake an act that would lead to it's own innevitable annihilation?)

1. Israel has stated that if the US does not do something about Iran's nuclear weapons program (that they insist exists is sic months from producing a nuclear bomb) that they will take care of it themselves.

As they did when the French stupidly let Iraq arrive at a position to create nuclear weapons.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005 6:21:00 pm  
Blogger anthony said...

Edward,

(As for this amusing line,
"...after Arafat led the Palestinians to war"
I assume you simultaneously mean "...after September 2000 when Sharon and his entourage of machine-gunnists, in a move that even the blindest ideologue could see was specifically intended to kick-off a second intifada, walked in to the al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem, swanned around for a bit, shot seven Palestinians and swanned off.")


If you are referring to Arial Sharon's visit to the Temple Mount, the Palestinian communications minister admitted that the Intifida had been planned before these events:

The PA had begun to prepare for the outbreak of the current Intifida since the return from the Camp David negotiations, by request of President Yasser Arafat, who predicted the outbreak of the Intifida as a complementary stage to the Palestinian steadfastness in the negotiations, and not as a specific protest against [Arial] Sharon's visit to the Al-Haram Al-Qudsi [Temple Mount].... The Intifada was no surprise for the Palestinian leadership…

That’s from the Jerusalem Post, quoted in the ‘evil Zionist’ publication- The Case for Israel- p.112. See the original source: Khaled Abu Toameh, ‘How the War Began’, Jerusalem Post, September 20, 2002.

Arial Sharon did not start the Intifida, the Palestinians did!

Wednesday, October 12, 2005 10:40:00 pm  
Blogger Wombat said...

Anthony,

I have read contradicting reports about Israeli/Kurdish/Turkish relations as the are unfolding. While you are undoubtedly better informed of this issue than I, it's fair to say that conflicting interests are inevitable. The US is playing the balancing act to appease the Kurds, while also trying not to alienate the Turkey. I do believe that as the Iraq war started to degenerate, Israel strengthened it ties with the Kurds. Justin Raimondo has written extensively about this development. I’m the first to acknowledged that Raimondo is a staunch Zionist critic, but nonetheless, his accuracy after the fact usually stands the test of time.

There was a recent disagreement between the US and Israel over it’s upgrading of UAV’s for China, which angered the US, who claimed this breeched US secrets that it had shard exclusively with Israel. I’m sure Israel regards it’s relationship with the US more highly that that with China, as this illustrates, relationships are rarely an all or nothing proposition. Israel like all countries, Israel will do what’s in it’s best interest and sometimes that means shifting priorities.

Just thinking out loud here. Yes a strained relationship with Turkey would be a problem for Israel, but there would probably be benefits to having a close relationship with an autonomous Kurdistan that gets to control the oil fields in Kirkuk. Perhaps the relations will be strained, but not so much that they can’t be repaired later?

If I contradicted myself with respect to Iran’s threat to Israel, it was probably due to poor grammar than intent. I cannot fathom why any country would start a battle that would lead to their own inevitable destruction, no matter how fanatical their leaders. Iran’s forging of close ties with Chine, Russia, India, Brazil and Venezuela, clearly suggest to me that they are working towards building strong trade relations, which would be at odds with taking on a foe it knows is more powerful and who’s ally undefeatable. Furthermore, as far as I’m aware, Iran does not have track record of unprovoked military aggression in the region.

My accusation of racism was unfounded and I subsequently retracted it with an apology. Having said that, it’s fair to say Israel were strong supporters of the Iraq invasion. I don’t want to start a new debate but I believe Ariel Sharon created his own equivalent of the Office of Special plans, because like the George Bush and the CIA, he wasn’t getting the intelligence he wanted from the Mossad.

Sorry Anthony but in my opinion, you can’t have it both ways and push for a war (which is guaranteed to produce death and destruction) , and claim that the mayhem that follows was not your intended aim. George Bush’s, Colin Powell, James Baker and many top advisors warned of what would happen if the US were to invade and Sadam Hussein were to be removed from power. All of this advice was treated with contempt. It’s also beyond dispute that prior to the invasion, Iraqi’s were not killing each other and car bombs were not going off in Badgdad. To dismiss this is Iraqi madness seems to me like a a superficial description of a complexed problem.

The bombing of the Osiric reactor by Israel was surely a good thing, but in regard to the stupidity of Western countries, the list is formidable. Why else would the US have intercepted Iraq’s 11,800 page report to the UN about it’s WMD program and disappeared 8000 pages?

With respects to Iran, this is the mother all hypocrisy and contradiction. When the Shah was in power, the US (including key people of Bush’s administration) were alls in favour of Iran having a peaceful nuclear program. They agreed that it was prudent for Iran to diversify their energy sources, especially in the event of conflict breaking out that would restrict oil exports through the shipping lanes. What are we hearing now? The Bush administration tells us it can’t fathom why Iran would need nuclear power given it’s huge hydrocarbon reserves, and that this must mean that Iran’s intentions are clandestine.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005 11:39:00 pm  
Blogger Wombat said...

Comical_ali

"Iran should be taken for its word, and if her government make these sorts of statements they have to live and deal with the consequences."

I do not dispute that. Everyone shoudl be makde accountable for their actions. The question remains, what are acceptable consequences?

"What they are developing alone is already in breach of a treaty which they signed - even if it is for "civilian purposes."

Until you provide a some evidence (other than your assertion about what the Iranian's say) or link to support this claim, and make come distinction between the NPT and the Nuclear Safeguards agreement, I will maintain that your claim is false.

As far as I am aware, there is the issue of breaches by Iran of the NPT protocol prior to Iran becomming a signatory to the NPT in late 2003. But as you are aware, you can breach a protocol to which you ahve not agreed.

Anyway, all this aside, let's make no mistake about where this is headed. The US will attack Iran, no matter what the outcome of this NPT business.

The US is playing the same game it played with Iraq. By creating confusing and diversions surrounding the matter of non proliferation and nuclear safeguards agreeemtns, they are turning this into a situation where Iran will be forced to prove a negative like they did with Iraq. Since proving a negative is impossible, the outcome is obvious.

It is all about creting a pretext for an attack on Iran and regime change. i do not support the idea of Iran having a nuclear weapons capability in any way, but a war with iran is going to be a disaster beyond description.

Thursday, October 13, 2005 1:23:00 am  
Blogger anthony said...

Addamo, the point of my post in relation to Iraq was that, acknowledging the Israelis were pushing for regime change, I believe it is unfair to hold the Israelis responsible for the actions of Iraqi terrorists who are targeting Iraqis.

Had regime change been undertaken following the First Gulf War, would you subsequently blame the Kuwaitis for the inevitable ‘resistance’ in Iraq that would follow?

Thursday, October 13, 2005 5:30:00 pm  
Blogger Ian Westmore said...

Addamo_01 said...

I should qualify that my sources do not specify whether the bombs are nuclear, but it has been reported that Iran's underground facilities are inpenetrable to conventional ground penetrating weapons.

The links you provided indicate these are conventional weapons, so this wouldn't violate the NPT.

My guess is that seeing as Israel does have an exisiting nuclear capability and technology sharing agreements with the US, they may be able to modify these weapons with their own nucelar warheads.

Not sure about that. A nuke warhead gives you a different effect to conventional explosives.

However, like you I suspect there is some collaboration going on. America can't produce new types of nukes under the NPT, but it can design them.

OTOH, Bush doesn't seem to be inhibited by the NPT, he only cares about it as a tool to enforce his world view.

Thursday, October 13, 2005 7:08:00 pm  
Blogger Edward Mariyani-Squire said...

anthony said...
"If you are referring to Arial Sharon's visit to the Temple Mount,

Noooooo ... I'm referring to Mount Rushmore. *rolls eyes*

And if you're referring to the Temple Mount, I see a Mount, but I don't see no Temple. And I don't see no Temple in the forseeable future either. Methinks the Messiah has gone for a very, very, VERY long walk with the dog.

the Palestinian communications minister admitted that the Intifida had been planned before these events .... Arial Sharon did not start the Intifida, the Palestinians did! "

If only Sharon had known! He could have saved 7 Palestinian lives. Then again, that's not his 'style', is it?

And why the hell did he go to the Mosque for anyway? Is he a regular there? The lyrics seem so fitting (everyone sing along now):

Sometimes you want to go
Where everybody knows your name,
and they're always glad you came.
You wanna be where you can see,
our troubles are all the same
You wanna be where everybody knows
Your name.

Friday, October 14, 2005 12:47:00 am  
Blogger Wombat said...

Anthony,

I agree that to suggest Israel is responsible for Iraqi terrorists/insurgents killing each other would be absurd. But equally absurd is the policy of regime change. Are not widespread conflict and often civil war not the usual consequences of the power vacuum that is created when removing the leadership of authoritarian regimes?

Is regime change ratified by any international law, the UN charter of the Geneva conventions? If you want to prevent despots from maintaining power, the way to do it is to stop supporting them.

My question to you is, how long would people like Sadam remain in power if the others did not arm and finance them?

The answer to you're hypnotically about the Gulf War depends on how far you investigate the events that led to the invasion.

Kuwait and the US are portrayed as innocents in the whole affair, when in fact they were incredibly duplicitous. There is ample evidence to suggest the invasion could have been presented by both parties.

Did April Glasby, the US ambassador to Iraq, not tell Sadam that the US had no interest in the regional conflict and that it should be resolved between Iraq and Kuwait?

Where not Hussein and the Amir of Kuwait were scheduled to have a meeting to resolve their disputes, but Amir chose to take off to London with his 300 concubines instead?

Did James Baker not echo the same message as the US ambassador, and state that the US would not intervene while Dick Cheney was convincing the Saudi’s that Iraq was about to invade them (and got them to foot the bill for the war to boot) by showing bogus satellite pictures of Iraqi tanks along the border? The Saudi’s at the time had a good relationship with Iraq. They had just forgiven US$7 billion loan to Iraq as a token of appreciation for wearing down the Iranians. The Kuwaiti’s has just as much as stake in seeing Iran blunted, but demanded that Iraq pay back their loan with interest, while they were also busy stealing oil from Iraq.

Who was behind the Goebells like propaganda that Hussein's soldiers took babies out of their incubators and let them die on the cold floor why none other than the daughter of the Kuwaiti ambassador in Washington, USA. Was this not the story that convinced the world that they had no choice but to go to war with Iraq?

Forgive me Anthony, i don;t meanto preach, but I get incredibly frustrated at the way events are sometimes. using shorthadn to describe complexed issues is often misleading.

So in answer to your question Anthony, I guess the answer is, I’m not sure.

Friday, October 14, 2005 1:48:00 am  
Blogger anthony said...

Noooooo ... I'm referring to Mount Rushmore. *rolls eyes*

Sarcasm doesn’t work for you Edward, it just makes you sound like a wanker.

Methinks the Messiah has gone for a very, very, VERY long walk with the dog.

Care to elaborate? Is this an attack on Judaism, or simply a meaningless sentence to make it even more of a struggle to read your tedious post?

And why the hell did he go to the Mosque for anyway? Is he a regular there? The lyrics seem so fitting (everyone sing along now)

What do you think? Could Arial Sharon be a closet Muslim?

No, Edward. I imagine Sharon wasn’t going there to visit al-Aqsa. He was visiting a site that is significant in Hebrew history. In any case you missed the point that I stressed in bold- The Palestinians started the Intifida.

Addamo,

You’re right. The world’s not black and white.

I’m embarrassed to say I’m not particularly familiar with either the situation in Iraq or international law, and wont be engaging in a debate over this with you- I’m sure James will oblige, however!

What I was stressing is that I do not hold Israel responsible for the death toll in Iraq, simply for their (what I consider) legitimate pressure for regime change. From my point of view, the US should also not be held responsible for Iraqi terrorists killing other Iraqis, especially when such a move is intended only to discredit the US. The world may not be black and white, but the calculated murder of children in the name of either Islam or ‘resistance’ is as dark as it gets.

Friday, October 14, 2005 3:07:00 am  
Blogger Wombat said...

Anthony,

No need for embarrasment, believe me. I am certanly no expert on any of these topics. I'm sure james will bitch slap me with legalese when he gets round to it. I trust that common sense will guide me in teh mean time. ;-)

Matters of responsibility is a fine line. The chaos in Iraq may not in itself be caused by the US directly, but there is no question in my mind that the US have no business being there.

What's more, there can be no doubt in anyone's mind that the US presence is fuelling the recruitment of the extremists.

I'm just reading this news item ,"Report Says White House Ignored CIA on Iraq Chaos" in today's Washingon Post (http://www.truthout.org/docs_2005/101305I.shtml). The title speaks for itself. The US did have a choice not to invade and set off this "hell on earth" that they were promised would happen. Like Lord Farkuad from Shrek, the powers that be in Washingon decided that it was a price they were willing to pay.

So too, calculated murder goes hand in hand with acts of aggression such as the invasion of Iraq. What the US did to Fallujah was commit genocide. What moral standing does an occupying force have when it a) forces people to leave their homes, b) delcares those who choose to remain and protect their home a terrorist, c) then use napalm, chemical weapons, and god knows what else to obliterate the town?

And all this was justified because they were supposed to be going after a one legged maniac, who the White House decided NOT to take out because his presence in Iraq could be included in Powell's speech to the UN and add weight to the case for the invasion.

It doesn't get much darker than that.

Friday, October 14, 2005 5:11:00 am  
Blogger James Waterton said...

Ok, let's take Israel. They piss me off sometimes. I don't, for example like the way they sometimes shit on their friends. Take the example of them violating New Zealand's sovereignty by stealing its passports to use in clandestine missions. But Israel is worth supporting because of its neighbours, and what it's done to keep them in check.

Someone mentioned Osirak recently. The world owes Israel a debt of gratitude for that - which even most sane luvvies accept - although they would have screamed blue fucking murder at the time. Iran's in exactly the same boat. They don't need nuclear power. They're swimming in oil. Why would they spend a fortune developing a civilian nuclear programme? It just doesn't make sense.

Here's what I hope. I hope Mossad has penetrated deep inside Iran's administration. Hell, I'd be happy for them to use Australian - New Zealand, whatever it takes - passports or whatever they need if it helps them get inside. I hope they're infiltrating right now. I hope they're finding out all about Iran's nuclear programme - where its laboratories are, where the reprocessing plants are, where the scientists are living who are working on the programme, and where the installations that defend this monstrous programme are and how to defeat them. Then when they've got all the information they need to do the job right, I hope Israel blows the whole fucking lot sky high. I don't care how they do it, as long as they're successful. I'd applaud American assistance. An Iran armed with nuclear weapons would be a catastrophic scenario. Some nations can be trusted with nuclear weapons. Israel, a mature democracy, is one. Iran isn't.

Then, when Israel's done the world a favour - just like they did in 1980 - I hope Iran goes absolutely apeshit. Hell, I'd *really* like it if they lobbed a few SCUDs (or whatever 1970s missile technology they're sporting) at Israel. The anti-missile defence system that Israel has developed could render them impotent - hopefully this drama is captured and beamed throughout the region, live, on al-Jazeera. I hope the Iranians realise how powerless they've become.

I'm sure the majority of Loewenstein's cheersquad would howl with rage if such a scenario played out. Don't worry, boys. In ten years' time, you'll be conceding that Israel saved the world from a great dilemma - just like your predecessors did a few years after Osirak's demolition.

Friday, October 14, 2005 1:42:00 pm  
Blogger Ian Westmore said...

James Waterton said...

But Israel is worth supporting because of its neighbours, and what it's done to keep them in check.

Have you considered that the neighbours wouldn't require checking if Israel didn't exist?

Someone mentioned Osirak recently. The world owes Israel a debt of gratitude for that

Have you considered the possibility that Iraq (and now Iran) wouldn't be going down the nuke path if Israel didn't have nukes, and in the case of Iran it wasn't being threatened by America?

Iran's in exactly the same boat. They don't need nuclear power. They're swimming in oil. Why would they spend a fortune developing a civilian nuclear programme? It just doesn't make sense.

Checked the price of petrol lately? While its inflated price is due to many factors, one is that from here on in we will be living with less and less oil.

At current consumption there is only about 50 years of the stuff left, but exponentially increasing demand in China and India means the pumps may start running dry in less than 20 years, much less if car ownership percentages there approach ours, which hopefully they won't.

Friday, October 14, 2005 4:04:00 pm  
Blogger anthony said...

At current consumption there is only about 50 years of the stuff left, but exponentially increasing demand in China and India means the pumps may start running dry in less than 20 years, much less if car ownership percentages there approach ours, which hopefully they won't.

Unless you take into consideration enhanced oil recovery techniques, the discovery and potential discovery of further oil reserves (for example, new sources in Russia), the potential to open up Alaska, the development of cars made to run on hydroelectric power (China is undertaking massive dam projects), declining costs of solar power, and greater willingness to at least consider nuclear power, despite the scaremongering of feral Greens crying “Chernobyl”, and ‘think of Gaea.”

Friday, October 14, 2005 5:04:00 pm  
Blogger James Waterton said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

Friday, October 14, 2005 5:35:00 pm  
Blogger James Waterton said...

Anthony : the green/left has been screaming "We're running out of oil!!!" for decades now.

Have you considered that the neighbours wouldn't require checking if Israel didn't exist?

That's a complicated question, because it deals with 'what-ifs'. The salient point is that Israel does exist. And if any solution to the ME crisis you float involves dissolving the state of Israel, then I'm sorry, but you're chasing a phantom. Anyway, a country like Israel is useful for the West. The Middle East is so strategic because of its oil reserves. It's very handy for the West to have a nation like Israel to crack some skulls if they start to step out of line. They subsequently pull their heads in, we verbally distance ourselves from Israel in the process, the world keeps spinning.

Checked the price of petrol lately?

Um, yes I have. It's high, isn't it, Ian? Oh, you've got me there! However you ignore the almost certain fact that the state-owned Iranian oil company doesn't charge the state-owned electricity company market rates for oil.

one is that from here on in we will be living with less and less oil.

At current consumption there is only about 50 years
(etc etc)

There is plenty of oil in the world, both in crude reserves and alternatives such as tar sand deposits - which are enormous. Technology improvements are continuously making out of reach deposits viable and formerly exhausted wells produce again. As the Saudi oil minister conceded a few years ago, "the stone age didn't end due to a lack of stone and the oil age won't end due to a lack of oil."

pumps may start running dry in less than 20 years, much less if car ownership percentages

You just invented that 20 year figure, didn't you? And you're also pissing in the wind with the increased car ownership figures. Get back to me when you start dealing in reality, Ian.

Friday, October 14, 2005 5:39:00 pm  
Blogger Wombat said...

Young James. You are a perfect example of how a little knowledge is a dangerous thing. Are you are talking about warfare or a video game?

Does this elaborate side-show not seem a little bit familiar to you? Let me give you a hint - Niger uranium, aluminum tubes, 45 minute warnings, armed drones flying over the US West coast, mobile weapons laboratories, mushroom clouds over US cities.

The US was all for Iran having nuclear power during the Shah's reign, the US glove puppet. Dick Cheney, Paul Wolfowitz and Donald Rumsfeld were among the most vocal supporters behind Iran's justification that they were entitled to alternative sources of energy.

Past Arguments Don't Square With Current Iran Policy
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A3983-2005Mar26.html

“Iran's in exactly the same boat.”

Same boat meaning what exactly? The only similarity between Iran and Iraq is that neither have nuclear arms, which is why the US is even contemplating an attack.

“They don't need nuclear power. They're swimming in oil. Why would they spend a fortune developing a civilian nuclear programme? It just doesn't make sense.”

It doesn’t if you don’t want it to make sense. Me thinks you’ve been too busy decoding George Bush’s undecipherable speeches to pay attaention in your econimics classes.

The high prices of oil adds weight to Iran’s justification for diversification. Economically, Iran stands to gain significantly by exporting as much of it’s hydrocarbons as possible. If you’ve ever been to the land of the free, you’d find that you can’t buy cheap fruit in fruit growing areas, or cheap fish in some fishing villages because all product is exported.

Iran has abundant hydrocarbons resources, but they are finite. Their predicament is that once their reserves are depleted, they have limited options for bring revenue into their country. That probably didn’t occur to you, but you’re not running a country. Some would argue that taking advantage of a financial windfall in the short term, and diversifying energy for the long term makes sound business sense.

When all is said and done, the biggest threat Iran poses is to the US dollar. Iran is in the process of implementing it’s own oil bourse:

http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Global_Economy/GH26Dj01.html
http://www.energybulletin.net/7707.html

Basically, this is Iran’s effort to move oil trading away from the petro dollar and trade in euros. Venezuela has already expressed it's desire to follow Iran;s lead. If this is successful and other OPEC countries follow suit, then the US becomes a 3rd world country overnight. The US borrows US$2 billion a day just to stay solventm and they can only do so as long as the US dollar is propped up by oil trading. US leaders know that it's debt is un-repayable. The only way to avoid the day of reckoning is to maintain the US dollar as he standard.

A little reported fact is that Iraq did a similar thing. This move was initially mocked by Wall Street until Iraq started actually making money from the deal, which in turn, made NY brokers loose control of all bodily functions. One of the first things Dubya did after declaring “Mission accomplished” was to revert Iraqi’s oil trading back to the US dollar.

Revisited - The Real Reasons for the Upcoming War With Iraq:
http://www.ratical.org/ratville/CAH/RRiraqWar.html

U.S. Dollar vs. the Euro: Another Reason for the Invasion of Iraq
http://www.projectcensored.org/publications/2004/19.html

The West has gotten so used to telling less developed countries what to do and how to do it, that when these countries show they can think for themselves, they respond like an abusive husbad who'd wife decides to leave him.

"Here's what I hope. I hope Mossad has penetrated deep inside Iran's administration."

Rest assured your wishes have been granted. When you have time, check out “THE COMING WARS” by SEYMOUR M. HERSH. He reports that “The Administration has been conducting secret reconnaissance missions inside Iran at least since last summer (meaning 2004).”

And yes James, you can do your very own Mexican wave over the fact that

“There has also been close, and largely unacknowledged, coöperation with Israel.”

You may have heard of the Mujahedin-e Khalq Organization (MEK), listed by the US State department as a terrorist organization. The US decided that terrorism is a good thing when it’s happens to your enemy, so the MEK is getting lots of encouragement (protection and money) from the CIA to go raise hell inside Iran. The same wingnuts who said Iraq would be a cakewalk, are adamant that the Iranian leadership is ready to topple and figure that the odd car bomb will do the trick.

"Then when they've got all the information they need to do the job right, I hope Israel blows the whole fucking lot sky high. "

As I read this, I dawns on me who inspired the producers of Seed of Chucky. I picture a young James sitting on his father’s lap saying, “when I grow up I wanna be a Big Bad Chicken Hawk. I wanna get other people to blow things up, and kill lotsa ayrabs. And if I’m really lucky daddy, maybe the president will let me have a look at the doomsday button”

Essential reading will be Bush’s memoirs “The road to manhood, how blowing up toads as child convinced me I was destined to be Commander in Chief”

"I don't care how they do it, as long as they're successful."

Why am I not surprised. You’re thousands of miles away so why would ytou be?. The fact that targets are deep undesground and clsoe to populated areas probably means using nuclear bunkler busters, which will spread deadly radioactive fallout over a vast area. Estimates have put the death toll as high as 1 million.

What you might want to consider is that the Straight of Hormuz is the narrowest section of the Persian Gulf and that this is the only passage for oil tankers. Any ship passing is a sitting duck, so Iran could (and has threatened) to make this area impassable if attacked. Iran only has to keep this up for a week or two and whammo, instant international financial meltdown.

All US ships in the region not only become floating coffins (thanks to the Sunburns) but also remain captive in the Gulf.

Now you might assume that the US could take out the missile launching sites, but the Iranian coast in that region is mountainous and cratered with caves, which makes locating any such sites a nightmare.

Then the US starts nuking Iran and we have WWIII.

"I'd applaud American assistance. An Iran armed with nuclear weapons would be a catastrophic scenario. Some nations can be trusted with nuclear weapons."

And nuclear first strikes would be what, a minor inconvenience?

Would you would conclude that Pakistan is one of the success stories? You don’t seem too worried about the fact that the A.Q. Kahn network turned Pakistan in to the Harvey Norman store of nuclear proliferation?

” I hope Iran goes absolutely apeshit. Hell, I'd *really* like it if they lobbed a few SCUDs (or whatever 1970s missile technology they're sporting) at Israel. The anti-missile defence system that Israel has developed could render them impotent - hopefully this drama is captured and beamed throughout the region, live, on al-Jazeera. I hope the Iranians realise how powerless they've become.”

You might want to renew your subscription to Jane’s weekly. Russia leads the world in missile technology. While the USA were building billion dollar aircraft carriers to intimidate other countries, the Russians focused on something more practical. Conservative estimated suggest Russia is 10 years ahead of the US in terms of missile development.

http://www.newsmax.com/archives/articles/2001/2/11/183950.shtml

Google SS-N-22 Sunburn and then you might want to rethink your definition of impotence. The U.S. Navy tried to purchase this missile from the Russian Navy in 1995, but Russia refused. Tell me if there is a defense system that has even a 1 in a million chance of stopping a missile that travels at over 2,800 km an hour at altitudes of between than 2-10 meters. This altitude means Sunburn cannot be detected or logged by radar

And yes, the missile can be armed with a 200 Kiloton nuclear warhead.
At that speed and altitude, the Israeli’s would be looking at a white flash before they even knew what was happening. We’re talking Damascus to Tel Aviv in around three minutes

You can read about it here:
http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/world/russia/moskit.htm

Yes it is an anti ship missile, but can be launched from a fighter plane, and is just as effective over land. And guess who has a bunch of these? Iran and Syria.

That’s the good news. This thing has already been superseded by the new variant called the Onyx, which travels even faster, has double the range and larger capacity.

Re Israel's Patriot Missiles, forget the sale pitch brought on by Gulf War 1. They are redundant. Do a search on S-300 Missiles. Yes Iran has these things too.

http://www.sinodefence.com/missile/airdefence/s300.asp
http://www.astronautix.com/lvs/s300.htm

"In ten years' time, you'll be conceding that Israel saved the world from a great dilemma - just like your predecessors did a few years after Osirak's demolition."

I suspect that in ten tears time, you will pulling down the Bring Um On posters on your wall and ask your self, “what the hell was I thinking?

Saturday, October 15, 2005 4:07:00 am  
Blogger James Waterton said...

Young Adam,

You are a perfect example of how a little research can throw up a whole lot of crap and lead to some utterly muddleheaded conclusions. But, I'll give you your due - you've taken the time to write a War & Peace-type response. Which I'll rebut.

Now, Adam. About your links. Did you actually expect me to view them, or did you just provide them hoping I'll simply take them as proof that you're not talking a bunch of crap? Bad news, dude. I'm looking at them. A lot of them aren't strong, to put it generously. Okay, let's go.

The US decided that terrorism is a good thing when it’s happens to your enemy, so the MEK is getting lots of encouragement (protection and money) from the CIA to go raise hell inside Iran.

Good. It's called subversion. A lot cheaper than war, and sometimes as effective. See Contras, Nicaragua.

The same wingnuts who said Iraq would be a cakewalk, are adamant that the Iranian leadership is ready to topple and figure that the odd car bomb will do the trick.

Sorry, who said that Iraq would be a cakewalk? Links, please. My recollection was that Bush & co were talking very long term regarding occupation. Oh, or are you talking about the military conquest of Iraq? Because that clearly was a cakewalk. Also, who is adamant that the Iranian leadership is ready to topple? Links, please.

Adam, it's really not clever to invent things to bolster your case.

That probably didn’t occur to you, but you’re not running a country.

Actually, it did, and I wondered if it would be brought up here. I suspected that I wouldn't have to deal with it. To your credit, you did bring it up, and now I will. Under the NNPT, nations have a right to build a nuclear programme for civilian purposes. I personally believe that Iran forfeited that right when the IAEA exposed their secret nuclear programme back in 2002. Why were they running this secret programme when they had absolute legal authority to operate a civilian nuclear programme? The answer is obvious - they were trying to construct a bomb. Iran must not be allowed nuclear weapons. Go Israel!

f this is successful and other OPEC countries follow suit, then the US becomes a 3rd world country overnight.

And you have the cheek to lecture me about economics. No, it doesn't. You've provided a couple of dubious links that speculate that if the US dollar was no longer the international standard, the value of the USD would fall dramatically, causing economic meltdown. Neither of those articles actually say why a cheaper dollar would cause economic collapse in the USA - they and you are making the economic-curmudgeonly, amateurish mistake of creating twin nexuses between "strong currency and strong economy" and "weak currency and weak economy". If anything, a weaker US currency, whilst causing some short-medium term economic disruption - would right some of the current structural imbalances in their economy in the medium term. Your conspiracy-theorising links don't seem to have a clue about the actual source of the upwards distortion of the American dollar - and it's coming from Asia, not the Middle East. Most notably, China (although Japan's central bank is also a dab hand at this and has been doing it for decades - in fact, most of the Asian manufacturing economies do) is keen to ensure a strong dollar - and a relatively weak yuan, which is pegged at an artificially low rate to the dollar. Thus it buys enormous amounts of US treasury bonds at very low rates of yield; providing cheap debt to the US government (which is why it's so keen to run up these budget deficits we've been seeing post 9/11) and also promoting the Fed to maintain an expansionary monetary policy - allowing American consumers access to remarkably cheap credit. It also means the US consumer is able to buy masses of cheap (because of the weakness of the yuan) Chinese goods with their artificially expensive dollars. THAT'S why the American dollar is strong. If it was weakened because some oil trading nations start pricing their oil in Euros, I fail to see why this would be so catastrophic for the American economy. It should also be pointed out to you that four of the world's five top oil producing nations are strong US allies - namely; Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Kuwait and now Iraq. Just for argument's sake, let's drop Iraq off the list. Do you really think that Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Kuwait (who together hold about 40% of the world's crude reserves) are going to act in a way that contravenes the interests of their major ally? Get a clue, tinfoil hat man. A few links are no substitute for some sound knowledge on a subject like economics, Adam. There are a lot of hacks around, meboy. As you've just proven nicely.

A little reported fact is that Iraq did a similar thing.

Little reported fact? I was well aware of it. Now your article gets further into the business of tinfoil by speculating that the above shift by Saddam was a secret precursor to war. Evidence, gentlemen? With hindsight, we can definitely say that 9/11 made war with Iraq politically possible. I suppose you'll start claiming that the twin towers were toppled by neocon schemers itching to take out Saddam. No one in the administration predicted that event, and no one would have considered Iraqi regime change via a ground war realistic pre-9/11.

Also, I should mention that the countries holding massive USD reserves - countries like China, Japan, Saudi Arabia, South Korea, Taiwan etc - stand to lose massively if the value of the USD falls substantially. How does this brace of nations stand as a counterweight to the resentful, scheming members (Venezuela, Iran) of OPEC? Just a thought for you.

I also note your links are old, and for the most part, stale. Reading through a lot of them makes you realise that a lot happens in four or five years, or even one or two. So many of the predicted precursors for this apparent catastrophic shift away from the American dollar have failed to materialise, like the UK adopting the Euro (chance of that happening post referendum?) and a Japanese economic meltdown if the oil price cranks up from the $45-50/barrel price they were experiencing when the article was written. Well, the Japanese economy is showing signs of recovery (gasp!) during the same period as the oil price increased to $65-70/barrel (GASP!).

Okay, let's put our military caps on.

Rest assured your wishes have been granted.

I hope so.

As I read this, I dawns on me who inspired the producers of Seed of Chucky.(snip!)

You dawns on you, Adam? Yadda yadda yadda. So much bile. Next!

Estimates have put the death toll as high as 1 million.

Evidence/sources, please.

Russia leads the world in missile technology.

And since when did Russia annex Iran - or Iran annex Russia, for that matter? Also, I don't see anything in your geriatric links that makes that specific claim. As things stand, they hold one world class anti ship missile.

You might want to renew your subscription to Jane’s weekly.

HAHA! Hilarious! You should take this show on the road, no really. Why is that funny? Because you've backed your claims with links that are over four years old! For example, that Newsmax article is dated 12 Feb, 2001! And, to make things funnier, the Bush White House's claim that "it would not seek to increase the Clinton defense budget" really worked out well for you, didn't it? With the enormous increase in military funding post 9/11, how much do you reckon went to missile technology R&D? I'd wager that it got at least its fair share. So. IF (and that's a big if) Russia - at the time - had superior missile technology (and not just in the form of one powerful missile - the Moskit), do you reckon they still do, four and a half years later? Considering the pile of cash the Americans have no doubt spent on missile technology in the ensuing years? Not to mention missile defence. How do you think the enormous discrepancy in R&D spending is going to pan out - in the favour of Russia or America?

Do a search on S-300 Missiles. Yes Iran has these things too.

So what? Iran has a bunch of SAMs. Big deal. And here's a link for you: http://www.janes.com/regional_news/europe/news_briefs/jdw010704_04.shtml

the Israeli’s would be looking at a white flash

Um, what white flash? Presumably Israel would destroy Iran's nuclear weapons programme before white flashes become feasible.

Any ship passing is a sitting duck, so Iran could (and has threatened) to make this area impassable if attacked. Iran only has to keep this up for a week or two and whammo, instant international financial meltdown.

Could, for a short period of time. Don't you think the Americans have contingency plans for this (not exactly unthought of) scenario? It's why the Americans maintain a massive strategic oil reserve. Sure, Iran could block the pass for a period of time. It would cause an oil shock, the price of crude would spike. However, we're talking quite shallow waters here. Not that hard for engineers to unblock if the Iranians have sunk ships across the . Defeating Iran wouldn't take that long. If the Iranians somehow managed to dig in and hold their position for a long period of time, yes, there'd be grave consequences economically speaking. However, the Americans have proven that they're particularly good at Blitzkrieg warfare. I can't see the Iranians holding that part of the Persian gulf for that long - especially since the Saudis will be supporting the Yanks and allowing them to attack from their territory.

Israel's Patriot Missiles, forget the sale pitch brought on by Gulf War 1. They are redundant.

Israel doesn't use Patriots, smart guy. Whilst you were Googling up all these links you should have checked out Israel's capacities. http://www.army-technology.com/projects/arrow2/

In some ways I stand corrected. I underestimated Iran's missile technology - however your apocolyptic vision of white flashes over Israel is based upon Iran holding nukes as we speak - which doesn't appear to be the case. Like I said, Isreal would presumably neutralise that threat before it was operational. And I'm absolutely certain that the Americans have contingency plans in place to deal with the blocking (and subsequent unblocking) of the Persian gulf. Also, I'm quite sure they are aware of the Sunburn's capacities and have developed countermeasures - how effective these may be is anyone's guess. It's certainly a big "what if". However, there is more than one way to skin a cat and I'm quite sure American and Israeli military planners would factor in the potential of the Sunburn in the case of a military confrontation and create a strategy accordingly.

I suspect that in ten tears time, you will pulling down the Bring Um On posters on your wall and ask your self, “what the hell was I thinking?

We will see.

Saturday, October 15, 2005 5:13:00 pm  
Blogger anthony said...

One point James didn’t address (other than to dismiss it):

As I read this, I dawns on me who inspired the producers of Seed of Chucky. I picture a young James sitting on his father’s lap saying, “when I grow up I wanna be a Big Bad Chicken Hawk. I wanna get other people to blow things up, and kill lotsa ayrabs. And if I’m really lucky daddy, maybe the president will let me have a look at the doomsday button”

It seems to me that your accusing James of racism. Many posts here claim that any criticism of Israel is seen unfairly as automatically anti-Semitic, yet James criticises and stresses the need to prevent Iran from gaining nuclear weapons- and you turn around and claim James has a strange desire to kill Arabs.

… Just a point to ponder.

Saturday, October 15, 2005 5:53:00 pm  
Blogger Ian Westmore said...

James Waterton said...

You just invented that 20 year figure, didn't you?

Nope, it was stated by a Mobil rep on radio earlier this week, admittedly as a worst case scenerio.

And you're also pissing in the wind with the increased car ownership figures. Get back to me when you start dealing in reality, Ian.

Hmm. Lets see, China and India have the world's fastest growing economies, the peoples' wealth is increasing rapidly, but unlike every other country that has become prosperous they won't be clamouring for the toys that go with prosperity?

Have you passed on your wisdom to all the car manufacturers busily building plants in these countries? BMW, DiamlerChrysler, GM, Ford, Toyota, Nissan, Honda.... What fools they must be, huh?

Yes, they want to eventually build cars for export, but the local markets is the primary focus ATM, for one thing its more profitable. Being a buyers market GM apparently makes 8 times as much on some models as it does back home. By 2020, possibly earlier depending on how the economy fares, new car sales will outstrip America's.

India's market is expanding more modestly because of infrastructure constraints, less than 20%, but the luxury segment is growing by nearly 30% according to a BBC report back in June. Current annual sales are just over 1 million.

Saturday, October 15, 2005 7:31:00 pm  
Blogger James Waterton said...

Thanks for the convincing case you made about car ownership increasing. Three words: No Shit Sherlock.

So, the 20 years you refer to is a worst case scenario? Well, I guess the

much less if car ownership percentages...

part is the worst worst absolute worst case scenario, eh?

You don't think that oil companies factor in future projected consumption rates when they state that there's about (last time I checked) 37.7 years of oil left. Funny thing is that we've used oil for many years, and the projected reserve figure has constantly risen. This would suggest that we're discovering more oil than we're using.

So about your 20 year figure. It's just more oil hysteria, Ian. Fact is that there is a crapload of oil around; I know industry insiders privately admit that they know of about 90 years of reserve. Trust me, Ian, we're not going to run out of oil before it's superceded by new energy source.

Saturday, October 15, 2005 10:50:00 pm  
Blogger Wombat said...

"It seems to me that your accusing James of racism. Many posts here claim that any criticism of Israel is seen unfairly as automatically anti-Semitic, yet James criticises and stresses the need to prevent Iran from gaining nuclear weapons- and you turn around and claim James has a strange desire to kill Arabs."

Give it a rest Anthony,

James expressed a desire to set off a disaster in the Middle East and sailvated at the prospect. Who do you think is going to pay the price for that?

Monday, October 17, 2005 10:02:00 am  
Blogger Wombat said...

James,

Thanks for your colourful repsonse. Going through it now and will need some time to repond as you might appreciate.

Wil get back to you.

Monday, October 17, 2005 10:11:00 am  
Blogger anthony said...

James expressed a desire to set off a disaster in the Middle East and sailvated at the prospect. Who do you think is going to pay the price for that?

Maybe I'm reading the wrong post- but, not he didnt. In any case he can answer for himself.

Who do you think is going to pay the price if you meet the demands of Palestinians terrorists and agree to this BS 'right of return'? From memory, you hold the view that Israel should absorb 4 million Palestinian 'refugees' to make peace. As far as I know, you have not been accused of anti-Semitism for this.

Do you understand the point i'm trying to make?

Criticism of Israel is not anti-Semitic- equally, criticism of Iran, and demands to end its nuclear program (even if advocating direct intervention) are not racist. It is an unfair call.

Monday, October 17, 2005 6:53:00 pm  
Blogger Wombat said...

"Who do you think is going to pay the price if you meet the demands of Palestinians terrorists and agree to this BS 'right of return'? From memory, you hold the view that Israel should absorb 4 million Palestinian 'refugees' to make peace. As far as I know, you have not been accused of anti-Semitism for this."

Nope. Wasn't me. Who's BS right of return are you referring to? Israel has one of those BTW, except that theirs extends throughout the globe.

I have no idea who is talking about absorbing anyone. Absorbtion assumes a denial that occupied terroroties are given that name because they belong to someone else.

Criticism of Iran is obviously not racist. Applying double standards and advocting the whacking Iranians for something they haven't done, and without regard to the unavoidable loss of life, is.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005 3:32:00 am  
Blogger Wombat said...

James,

The name is Andre, but I appreciate the personal touch.

It’s pleasing to see you making an effort to actually formulate a worthwile argument, as opposed your lazy option of posting obnoxious drivel.

I'm quite sure you're a capable "put me in my place" kind of person, if you're big on that sort of thing. Personally, I took exception to your flippant regard for the lives of those who would be caught it the crossfire of your lovely war, which is why I sounded off.

Anwyay, answers to your rebuttal.

“Now, Adam. About your links. Did you actually expect me to view them, or did you just provide them hoping I'll simply take them as proof that you're not talking a bunch of crap? Bad news, dude. I'm looking at them. A lot of them aren't strong, to put it generously. Okay, let's go.”

Yes in fact I did. Why would I bother to otherwise? Be remindd that this started with you talking about Scuds, so your information was more than a decade old.

“Good. It's called subversion. A lot cheaper than war, and sometimes as effective. See Contras, Nicaragua.”

Well seeing you are in agreement with the Bushies and don’t believe in international law, or the notion of sovereignty, I guess you would consider this a non issue. Yes, the incursions into South America led to death squads wreaking havoc. They have left families destroyed, societies fractures and economies in tatters.

No biggie right?

We non chicken-hawks call inciting terror on other states, while decrying that the west does not give into terrorist demands , blatant hypocrisy and double standards. And to make it more palatable, you re-label it subversion, how very WASP of you.

Of course, if another country even dared to try this stunt on US soil, it would likely be seen immediately an act of war.

Anyway, I merely raised this because you stated that it was on your wish list. Being a good smaritan.

“Sorry, who said that Iraq would be a cakewalk? Links, please. My recollection was that Bush & co were talking very long term regarding occupation.”

That would make you’re recollection inaccurate. They talked about decades of war in reference to the war on terror, but not the one with Iraq. The public would never have settled for protracted, 200 billion dollar, 3 year campaign ahead of time.

The part about long term occupation came post facto if you remember. Remember Dick Cheney’s last throes followed by Rumsfeld 5, 6 8, 12 years?

“It could last six days, six weeks. I doubt six months.” Donald Rumsfeld, 3/7/03:

“I think it will go relatively quickly, . . . (in) weeks rather than months” Vice President Dick Cheney, 3/16/03:

The administration’s top budget official [Mitch Daniels] estimated today that the cost of a war with Iraq could be in the range of $50 billion to $60 billion. (2003)

Ricahrd Perl, one of the architects for he war insisted the US would be greeted as liberators. (http://www.globalresearch.ca/articles/HUG307A.html)

Perles associate, Kenneth Alderman (Defense Policy Board: Member ) was the one came up with the term cakewalk,
http://rightweb.irc-online.org/ind/adelman_k/adelman_k.php
http://www.newyorker.com/printables/talk/030414ta_talk_hertzberg

“Oh, or are you talking about the military conquest of Iraq? Because that clearly was a cakewalk.

In hindsight it apparently not. The Bathists and remainders of the Republican Guard who have since put up a fight, were not stupid. Having endured a protracted war with Iran, they obviously understood the virtue of patience. If you were them, would you partake in a suicidal butting of heads against a superior force or would you wait out the initial assault, and hope to pull them into urban warfare that would hopefully wear them down? It’s a matter of record that Vietnam is still a moot point in the the US, and that they would not be able to stomach heavy casualties or a long war.

One of Rumsfeld’s clever tricks was to outsource the work to Private Contractors so as to hide the real death toll. So here we are 3 years later, 2000 US soldiers, US200 billon and according to Lancet, 100,000 Iraqi lives later.

What do you say to that James? Go US of A?

Also, who is adamant that the Iranian leadership is ready to topple? Links, please. “

Michael Ledeen, one the most influential to the Bush gang a and member of the think tank American Enterprise Institute has been writing about this for years.
http://www.nationalreview.com/ledeen/ledeen200508191008.asp
http://www.nationalreview.com/ledeen/ledeen200509230815.asp
http://www.nationalreview.com/ledeen/ledeen061603.asp
http://www.larouchepub.com/other/2003/3027ledeen_iran.html

There are rumors in Washington that he had a hand in the Niger Uranium forgery scandal.

“I suspected that I wouldn't have to deal with it. To your credit, you did bring it up, and now I will. Under the NNPT, nations have a right to build a nuclear programme for civilian purposes. I personally believe that Iran forfeited that right when the IAEA exposed their secret nuclear programme back in 2002.”

I am bewildered that someone with your apparent intellect is buying this charade regarding the NPT, which is why I didn’t raise it. If it hadn’t been the NPT Safeguards agreement contravention, I’m sure the Busheviks would have created something else out of whole clopth. In fact, I just read today that the U.S. State Department determined in August 2005 that "Iran was in violation of its CWC [Chemical Weapons Convention] obligations because Iran is acting to retain and modernize key elements of its CW infrastructure to include an offensive CW R&D capability and dispersed mobilization facilities."

How pathetic. As though the US and every other country aren't doing the same. The US is apparently buying up anthrax at the moment and no one blinks.

Condeleeza Rice is traveling through Europe mindlessly parroting the line that Iran has to fulfill it’s obligations, when she clearly doesn’t have a clue what she is talking about. In spite of the fact that the IAEA has repeatedly stated that Iran are in compliance, Washingon has stated that this is irrelevant.

How do we know that Washington wants to beat up on Iran. Let’s start with their brand spanking new ambassador to the UN, the psychopath extraordinaire, John Bolton. If you don’t know about this guy, I would highly recommend looking him up just for kicks.

This guy is so dispised that he couldn’t even get a confirmation vote for the appointment from the Republican controlled senate. Of course, Bush appointed him anyway. This man has been repeatedly exposed for making things up about countries he wants America to invade. What’s more, he considers it his right to do so. He’s your kind of guy James, never lets facts get in the way of a case for war.

Secondly, there is an interesting piece from an ex-CIA man, Phillip Giraldi. He discusses plans made by Cheney, to strike at Iran with tactical nukes in the event of a terrorist attack in the US. Note that this plan is not contingent on Iran having anything to do with the attack. Now there’s justice for you.

And you’ll be pleased to note that the source is not a tin foil hat reference but the American Conservative magazine.

http://www.amconmag.com/2005_08_01/article3.html

I have been unable to verify when Iran actually became a signatories to the NPT, but it seems it was in late 2003. I understand that the Iranian’s weren’t signatories to the NPT at the time they were caught out by the IAEA, but I could be wrong.

There is debate about whether Iran was in breach of the Paris Agreement, which was the fault of the E3, who took too long to get their act together (failing to provide a proposal after Iran agreed to an extension). This was a separate agreement to the IAEA, but seeing as it was an additional protocol Iran agreed to, their resumption theoretically contravened the NPT Safeguards agreement.

Allteh more to scar th public with.

Anyway, by your reasoning, Pakistan, India and North Korea have also foresighted the same right no? What is the US doing about it. Bugger all. What message does this put out to other countries? Get nuked up ASAP if you want to avoid a US invasion.

“Why were they running this secret programme when they had absolute legal authority to operate a civilian nuclear programme? The answer is obvious - they were trying to construct a bomb. Iran must not be allowed nuclear weapons. Go Israel!”

Go Israel? Do us all a favor and grow up James.

Why were they running this secret programme? The NPT is not obligatory. The fact is that they are now fully co-operating and opent to the most extensive and intrusive ispections of any country ever. Should this co-operation not be maintained with some kind of incentive? Everything is accounted for according to the man that was 100% right about Iraq’s nukes also, El Baradei. What so the US have to say about that? They say it’s meaningless.

If and when the US do strike Iran, a nuclear superpower will have nuked a non-nuclear state that is an NPT signatory and is co-operating with the IAEA, at the instigation of a state that is a non NPT signatory, that reportedly has over 100 nuclear bombs of it’s own.

Don’t we live in an upside down world? You seem to think this is a smashing idea. Personally, I think it's lunacy.

I agree that Iran should not be allowed to have nukes. But what is so secret about what they are dong since they signed the NPT and the IAEA has given them a clean bill of health?

“And you have the cheek to lecture me about economics. No, it doesn't. You've provided a couple of dubious links that speculate that if the US dollar was no longer the international standard, the value of the USD would fall dramatically, causing economic meltdown.”

Lecture you about economics. Well excuse me, but you seemed to be grappling with the long proven concept of sell high, buy low at the time, so I thought it necessary to jog your logic.

I raised the issue of economics in reference to your dilemma as to why Iran would need or want nuclear power. The absence of your rebuttal to that point suggests that you are in agreement.

I admit to getting distracted with the petrodollar tangent, which was largely irrelevant.

I did not say a cheap dollar would be the issue so much as a dollar that is subjected to lower demand. The US borrows 2 billion a day to stay solvent. It’s debt is out of control. Even if a handful of countries move to the Euro, it will create a dollar surplus would it not?

"If anything, a weaker US currency, whilst causing some short-medium term economic disruption would right some of the current structural imbalances in their economy in the medium term."

Even the best possible outcome eventuates, do you think the US economy is any state to absorb short-medium term economic disruption? These are the most frightened people in the world.

"Just for argument's sake, let's drop Iraq off the list. Do you really think that Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Kuwait (who together hold about 40% of the world's crude reserves) are going to act in a way that contravenes the interests of their major ally?"

There have been persistent rumors that Bush wants to take on Saudi Arabia when he runs out of targets, so allegiances are by no means set in stone. You don’t think the House of Saud would use any leverage to prevent this happening?
Bush to Blair: First Iraq, then Saudi
http://news.independent.co.uk/world/politics/article319993.ece

"Get a clue, tinfoil hat man. A few links are no substitute for some sound knowledge on a subject like economics, Adam. There are a lot of hacks around, meboy. As you've just proven nicely."

Bravado. You’ve taken the least significant point of my post and turned it into a novel. Nice distraction.

"Little reported fact? I was well aware of it. Now your article gets further into the business of tinfoil by speculating that the above shift by Saddam was a secret precursor to war."

Precursor? There was no time wasted in reverting Iraq’s oil trading back to the US dollar. It if was so insignificant, why the hurry or why at all?

"Evidence, gentlemen? With hindsight, we can definitely say that 9/11 made war with Iraq politically possible. I suppose you'll start claiming that the twin towers were toppled by neocon schemers itching to take out Saddam."

That they were itching for a war with Iraq is a matter of record. They were so arrogant they even wrote about it. That they were waiting for such an event to catalyze their plans is also a matter of record. That Rumsfeld started planning the Iarq invasion 5 hours after the Pentagon was hit is also on the record.

"No one in the administration predicted that event, and no one would have considered Iraqi regime change via a ground war realistic pre-9/11."

Excuse me? No one predicted it? Isn’t this exactly what the madame Mushroom Cloud Rice said before she was forced to wipe the egg of her face and admit otherwise? Ever heard of the August 2001 PBD Entitled “Bin Landen Determined to Attack inside the USA? Ever heard of drilsl that were donucted to simulate that very event?

Wake up.
Ever heard of the Able Danger project, which traked 4 of the 19 high jackers up until at least a year prior to 911? Sad that you regard main stream sources as Tin Foil Hat Material.

What about the fact that the Atta known to Pentagon before 9/11
http://news.yahoo.com/s/chitribts/20050928/ts_chicagotrib/attaknowntopentagonbefore911

"Also, I should mention that the countries holding massive USD reserves - countries like China, Japan, Saudi Arabia, South Korea, Taiwan etc - stand to lose massively if the value of the USD falls substantially. How does this brace of nations stand as a counterweight to the resentful, scheming members (Venezuela, Iran) of OPEC?"

Everyone stands to loose and you could certainly argue that as the debtor, the US pulls the strings. But do you honestly believe that an energy hungry China will sit and do nothing if the US do attack/invade Iran, with who’m they have singed huge energy agreement? And if it came down to it and economic stalemate, who do you think will give in first?

As for alliances, they are shifting by the day James. You seem to be convinced that things will remain set in stone. Israel recently pissed off the US with is military sales to China. The US is playing a balancing act with India and Pakistan. Sates will do what’s in their interest.

“Okay, let's put our military caps on. “

Yes lets. Do me a favor and do a Google on Missile Defense Failure.

"Estimates have put the death toll as high as 1 million."

I have to concede that though I remember reading this, I have been unable to track the evidence down. Either way, I do believe the evidence was second hand source since such reports would hardly be public domain. I million deaths from the fallout of a nuclear stroke in a country of 60 million is not inconceivable.

The important point however, is that in order to penetrate the underground targets inside Iran, the US will probably have to resort to tactical nukes. Some of these sites are apparently in populated areas. Fallout is unavoidable and deadly.

“And since when did Russia annex Iran - or Iran annex Russia, for that matter?

Did the US annex Israel? No. Do they have a military base there? Yes. Do they provide Israel with military hardware? Yes. You do the math Sherlok.

Russians help Iran with missile threat to Europe
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml?xml=/news/2005/10/16/wiran16.xml&sSheet=/portal/2005/10/16/ixportaltop.html

Needless to say, iran already has this technology: Shahab-5
http://www.missilethreat.com/missiles/shahab-5_iran.html


Russia is already surrounded by US military bases on all sides. If Iran were taken and the leadership overthrown, the first thing the US would do is build another one. That’s not supposition, because like a weed, that’s what the US military does – especially when there is oil around.

"Also, I don't see anything in your geriatric links that makes that specific claim. As things stand, they hold one world class anti ship missile.”

No they have a great deal more than that. They just developed a new BM
RT-2UTTH - Topol-M SS-27
http://www.globalsecurity.org/wmd/world/russia/rt-2pmu.htm

“With the enormous increase in military funding post 9/11, how much do you reckon went to missile technology R&D?”

Well as it turns out, throwing more money at something doesn’t always bear fruit, as the Missile Defense System goes to prove.

"I'd wager that it got at least its fair share. So. IF (and that's a big if) Russia - at the time - had superior missile technology (and not just in the form of one powerful missile - the Moskit), do you reckon they still do, four and a half years later? Considering the pile of cash the Americans have no doubt spent on missile technology in the ensuing years?"

Tell me James, when was the last missile defense test the US conducted? How many words can you think of to describe complete and utter failure? Not just once, but the last 4 or 5 tests I believe going back a decade.

What’s even more pathetic, is that the system was designed to defend against 1980 generation Russian ICBM missiles. How much money has been sunk into this project? Rediculous sums. As this issue goes to prove, cash does not guarantee invention or innovation.

And while where on the subject of cash, check this out:
Military waste under fire
$1 trillion missing -- Bush plan targets Pentagon accounting
http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?file=/c/a/2003/05/18/MN251738.DTL

and here:

Testimony before the House Appropriations Committee: Fiscal Year 2002 Defense Budget Request
http://www.dod.gov/speeches/2001/s20010716-secdef2.html

This last link puts the misappropriation at 2.6 trillion. I’m sure that could have gone toward dome serious hardware. Little wonder the CPA in Iraq misplaced 9 billion.

Sems your fiscal exrtapolations just hit a brick wall.

“Not to mention missile defence. How do you think the enormous discrepancy in R&D spending is going to pan out - in the favour of Russia or America?”

Yeah missile defense. You should read this announcement that they are not going to upgrade the system. What they don’t mention is that the thing never worked in the first place.

U.S. gives up on upgrading missile defense
http://www.wpherald.com/storyview.php?StoryID=20051013-044213-8370r

Anyway, if US military spending is anything to go by, they will likely move to Weaponize Space. Why waste money on one project when you can waste more perusing another?

Missile defense and Space Weapons have turned out to be nothing but a boondoggle for weapons manufacturers.

“Um, what white flash? Presumably Israel would destroy Iran's nuclear weapons programme before white flashes become feasible”

I agree this is another what if. The point is that the Iranians are not stuck with Scuds.

"Could, for a short period of time. Don't you think the Americans have contingency plans for this (not exactly unthought of) scenario? It's why the Americans maintain a massive strategic oil reserve."

Given that the reserves capacity would last 2 months I would agree.

"Sure, Iran could block the pass for a period of time. It would cause an oil shock, the price of crude would spike. However, we're talking quite shallow waters here. Not that hard for engineers to unblock if the Iranians have sunk ships across the . Defeating Iran wouldn't take that long."

How would engineers unblock a straight that is guarded by anti ship missiles? Another what if I agree. Anyway, as for not taking very long to defeat Iran, that is meaningless. The US aren’t the only ones preparing for a war. Weren’t we told that Iraq wudl be short sharp and sweet?

"If the Iranians somehow managed to dig in and hold their position for a long period of time, yes, there'd be grave consequences economically speaking. However, the Americans have proven that they're particularly good at Blitzkrieg warfare."

Oh this is rich The US have proved they are particularly good at Blitzkrieg warfare against whom exactly? A completely demoralized and poorly equipped army that was devastated by a decade long arms embargo and sanctions, not to mention being flattened in Gulf War 1 and before that, barely surviving a protracted war with Iran. Great example.

Any more where that came from?

"I can't see the Iranians holding that part of the Persian gulf for that long - especially since the Saudis will be supporting the Yanks and allowing them to attack from their territory."

Well, that’s an interesting point yes. you may be right.

Now let’s look at Iraq for a moment. The US is bogged down at the moment against a bunch of guys running around with home made bombs, rifles and the odd RPG and SAM. US military have suggested they cannot defeat the insurgency militarily.

Let’s assume the insurgency are primarily Sunni. Now let’s throw the Shia into the equation, who take their orders from Tehran, and who have been quiet until now. Do you think they re gong to sit on the sideline and clap if the US go after Iran?

"And I'm absolutely certain that the Americans have contingency plans in place to deal with the blocking (and subsequent unblocking) of the Persian gulf.”

One would hope so, but it seems you are flying high on faith here. The US has been exposed as being particularly prone to doing things badly when things don’t go according to plan. And with guys like Rumsfeld at the helm, who don’t like listening to advice, they have become like a dinsosaur – big muscle but small brain.

“Also, I'm quite sure they are aware of the Sunburn's capacities and have developed countermeasures - how effective these may be is anyone's guess. It's certainly a big "what if".

The only countermeasure that’s up to scruitiny is the Aegies system, which I read has had a mediocre success rate, but what do I know?

Cheers

Tuesday, October 18, 2005 9:25:00 am  
Blogger James Waterton said...

Andre,

I haven't started reading your reply yet bar the first few sentences - although I must admit my initial post was worded to be inflammatory. However, I do agree that Iran should be denied nuclear weapons.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005 10:31:00 am  
Blogger James Waterton said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005 10:44:00 am  
Blogger James Waterton said...

Okay, read it. I'll respond later today. If you want to access this thread, I suppose it would be easiest from the link I posted in the other thread. I don't think this site locks threads...

Tuesday, October 18, 2005 10:46:00 am  
Blogger James Waterton said...

Andre:

It’s pleasing to see you making an effort to actually formulate a worthwile argument, as opposed your lazy option of posting obnoxious drivel.

Well, I fight fire with fire, in regards to both worthwhile arguments and obnoxious drivel. Once again, to give you your due, this discussion is the most exercised I've been on Loewenstein's blog.

Personally, I took exception to your flippant regard for the lives of those who would be caught it the crossfire of your lovely war, which is why I sounded off.

Fair enough. To be honest, I posted the rant about Iran to excite the base here. So you're right, it was flippant and not particularly well-considered, because it was never supposed to be a serious argument. However, on a serious note, I do believe that Iran should be prevented from obtaining nuclear weapons, and I think it's worth taking a military option - in the form of a strategic strike - to neutralise any pending nuclear threat.

don’t believe in international law, or the notion of sovereignty

Hang on. You're hitting the emotional strings pretty hard here, though not much thought is involved. Are you saying you believe in both? Pah. Impossible. The two are constantly at odds with each other and will never coexist as equals. Actually, what is known as 'international law' is the new kid on the block and is trying to muscle in on the nation state's turf. Thing is, the nation state still rules supreme. International "law" (it's not really law - law is unconditional and absolute. International "law" is but a series of agreements between states - which any state can opt out of at will) is destined to hang around as long as sovereignty is not threatened. Take a nation like China, for example. It bangs on about international law, but its true colours will show when it sees its sovereignty dishonoured/damaged. International law will be tossed out like yesterday's newspaper as it fights to maintain its sovereignty. International law is a paper tiger until an effective world government comes along. For me, that's the stuff of nightmares.

No biggie right?

There's been worse. The Contras were brutal. So were the Sandinistas. On the balance of things, I think Nicaragua is better off without a Sandinista dictatorship. The mainly native Indian Contras wouldn't have existed if the Sandinistas hadn't nationalised their traditional lands.

We non chicken-hawks call inciting terror on other states,

I'd rather achieve the more - shall we say - ambitious foreign policy objectives through subversion rather than war. Call me a softy - if done right, less people die - on both sides. Please don't tell me you're naive enough to think that there are never appropriate reasons for country A to do a nasty thing to country B. If you do, the you should realise that the world is a slightly more complex place than you believe.

“It could last six days, six weeks. I doubt six months.” Donald Rumsfeld, 3/7/03:

Yes, but are they talking about the occupation or the campaign to overthrow Saddam? It sounds like they're talking about the campaign - I doubt Rumsfeld would seriously assert that the occupation might last 6 days. Thanks for that awful link about Richard Perle - I've never seen so many exclamation marks in one article.

In hindsight it apparently not.

Oh come on. Here you're trying to have your cake and eat it too (well we were talking about a cakewalk). I'm sorry, but the invasion *was* a cakewalk. The Americans walked in, Saddam's regime disintegrated, the Americans took over. They even (foolishly, but that's another issue entirely) disbanded the entire Iraqi military. I'm finding it hard to comprehend just how much more conquered Iraq could get. Occupation is another issue, but it sounds like you don't even think we've got to the occupying stage yet! No, until every former Ba'athist militaryman - now insurgent - is rounded up and dealt with; only THEN will you proclaim the commencement of the occupation period. Up until then, it's still a hot war! You're in fantasy land.

according to Lancet, 100,000 Iraqi lives later.

A figure that has been widely disproven.

Now, onto your Leeden links. Is he the only character you can dig up who's urging Bush and co to war with Iran? Anyway, he's not. I've read his articles in the National Review (but ignored the LaRouche link - sorry, but wouldn't trust the man, his organisation or their collective paranoia as far as I could throw them/him) - he basically says that the Iranian regime is built on very shaky popular support. He may be right when he says the mullahs are widely hated within Iran. He may be wrong. But *nowhere* is he urging military intervention. In fact, he seems to be openly spurning it in one article when he says "Our most potent weapons are political and ideological, but our actions have been almost exclusively military." The major point here is that there is *ZERO* evidence of some great war with Iran in the works. Yet, all the lefties are rushing around shrieking "Iran's next!!" As if! America is militarily and financially overstretched as is to militarily enact regime change in Tehran. Fomenting revolution by supporting democratic movements within Iran sounds like a great idea to me.

And I'm not interested in dealing in your unsubstantiated "rumours". You wouldn't accept that level of evidence from me, I don't see why I should from you.

I am bewildered that someone with your apparent intellect is buying this charade regarding the NPT

I’m sure the Busheviks would have created something else out of whole clopth.

Paranoid speculation.

The US is apparently buying up anthrax at the moment and no one blinks.

Oh, more rumours? Nope, this one's got the ring of truth to it, but the anthrax isn't for reasons you're thinking of. No, as is mentioned in this New Scientist article (http://www.newscientist.com/article.ns?id=dn8044), the army is trying to procure anthrax. Not for weapons, though - they are after the Sterne strain of Anthrax that isn't toxic to humans, and - here's the kicker - it's mostly used in the production of vaccines. The Army had put the damn stuff out to tender, because they haven't been allowed to manufacture large quantities of biological warfare agents since the 70s! They also are attempting to procure fermentation equipment and "sheep carcasses to test the efficiency of an incinerator for the disposal of infected livestock." Just put your paranoia aside for a moment. Does it sound like the Army is attempting to construct WMDs with a shitload of anthrax of a harmless strain and a bunch of equipment more suited to developing vaccines? Here's what the experts had to say:

They could be used to test procedures to decontaminate vehicles or buildings, or to test an "agent defeat" warhead designed to destroy stores of chemical and biological weapons...'I can definitely see them testing biological weapons delivery systems for threat assessment,"

How terrifying! They're attempting to procure anthrax in an effort to develop techniques to neutralise an anthrax strike! Why isn't the world up in arms about this? Your uninformed rhetoric is spinning out of control, especially here:

In spite of the fact that the IAEA has repeatedly stated that Iran are in compliance, Washingon has stated that this is irrelevant.

Oh really?
http://www.cnn.com/2005/WORLD/europe/08/11/iran.iaea/
Check the age of that report. You were saying?

Let’s start with their brand spanking new ambassador to the UN, the psychopath extraordinaire, John Bolton.

Okay, so you named him. Then you went precisely nowhere with it. What's he got to do with Iran? What's your point? Do you have one? Like I said before, empty rhetoric.

And you’ll be pleased to note that the source is not a tin foil hat reference but the American Conservative magazine.

I read the link. Sounds rumour mill-ish to me. And the guy isn't telling the whole story - he has an axe to grind. That alone is obvious.

Iranian’s weren’t signatories to the NPT at the time they were caught out by the IAEA, but I could be wrong.


You are wrong. They signed up in 1968, ratified in 1970. http://www.fas.org/nuke/control/npt/text/npt3.htm

Anyway, by your reasoning, Pakistan, India and North Korea have also foresighted the same right no? What is the US doing about it. Bugger all.

It's widely known that Pakistan and India held nuclear weapons long before they actually got around to testing them recently. North Korea claims to have nukes - that's unverified. If you want to know "what is the US doing about" North Korea - I'd say probably about the same what it's doing about Iran - working the diplomatic angle. It is only you and your colleagues who have this doomsday prediction of a pending invasion of Iran.

Go Israel? Do us all a favor and grow up James.

Awww...I'm vewwy tawwy. Admittedly I was being a bit provocative there. Glad it worked.

The NPT is not obligatory.

Sorry, weren't you championing international law above? Anyway, do, continue!

The fact is that they are now fully co-operating and opent to the most extensive and intrusive ispections of any country ever...Everything is accounted for according to the man that was 100% right about Iraq’s nukes also, El Baradei. What so the US have to say about that?

Dude, wtf are you on about? Have you been living under a rock for the past 6 months?
http://www.mosnews.com/news/2004/09/29/iranuranprot.shtml

Look at that link. El Baradei even gets a mention. Sadly, he didn't back you up as you might have hoped.

The diplomatic wheels are in motion. Iran has a serious case to answer. If Iran doesn't answer adequately - and the standard should be high due to its earlier breaches of the NNPT - then other options will need to be examined to prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons.

Personally, I think it's lunacy.

Personally, I think your take on events is extraordinarily muddled and inaccurate. You give Iran a clean bill of health. Well, at least there's one of you. Iran only has another few billion to convince.

Well excuse me, but you seemed to be grappling with the long proven concept of sell high, buy low at the time

Sorry, what was I doing?

I raised the issue of economics in reference to your dilemma as to why Iran would need or want nuclear power. The absence of your rebuttal to that point suggests that you are in agreement.

Like I said earlier, I believe that because of its previous actions, Iran has forfeited the right to nuclear energy. Iran is a special case.

The US borrows 2 billion a day to stay solvent.

Who does? The federal government? If you're talking about the current account deficit, it's erroneous to view that as "borrowing". It means that capital is flowing into the country, not that it's being lent. You also ignore the USA's massive overseas assets and the returns received from them. The federal government will, at some point, have to pay off the public debt. American public debt isn't that high as a percentage of GDP. Japanese public debt, for example, is far higher.

do you think the US economy is any state to absorb short-medium term economic disruption?

In a word, yes. I don't think the US economy is as precarious as you believe. Certainly, there are structural imbalances, and some kind of correction seems likely. But economic collapse - to my mind - is unlikely. The Chinese economy is in a far more dire predicament. If you want to know more about this, I wrote extensively on the issue earlier this year. http://itneededtobesaid.blogspot.com/2005/07/china-chimera.html

There have been persistent rumors

Ah, those rumours again. Did you hear them on Dailykos or DU? I'm sure that Bush will attempt to grapple with the Saudis at some point and lean on them to make them stop whipping up anti-Americanism at home. However, to suggest the Sauds are going to go Saddam's way any time soon is unfounded paranoia.

You’ve taken the least significant point of my post and turned it into a novel.

No, you've taken the point of your post where you were out-talked most convincingly and decided in hindsight that it's the least significant point.

Precursor? There was no time wasted in reverting Iraq’s oil trading back to the US dollar. It if was so insignificant, why the hurry or why at all?

Paranoia, again! Are you seriously trying to suggest that Iraq was invaded because they didn't trade in USD?

Excuse me? No one predicted it?

I didn't say "no one said it was impossible", and of course I'm aware of Able Danger, although it certainly didn't predict 9/11, so I can't understand why you're bringing it up. And I'm sure that Americans drilled for potential massive strikes. Though I challenge you to come up with one person in the Bush administration who said "What we'll do in regards to taking out Saddam is wait for a huge strike against us, on our soil, then we'll get him. Have the plans ready, boys, it's only a matter of time." No one said that, and you know it. 9/11 made regime change through military action politically possible. It simply wasn't before.

But do you honestly believe that an energy hungry China will sit and do nothing if the US do attack/invade Iran

Yep. They know what side their bread's buttered on. China absolutely relies on a bouyant US economy to stave off economic (and political) collapse. They would never risk sanctions. Read the link I posted above for more info.

Sates will do what’s in their interest.

I agree. That's why international law is such a crock.

No they have a great deal more than that

Wow, they have ICBMs. Tell me something I don't know. Okay, that's partially my fault. I meant to say "As things stand, they hold one world leading anti ship missile." , not "world class".
Sems your fiscal exrtapolations just hit a brick wall.

Um, why? Because governments waste money? Er...no shit sherlock.

Tell me James, when was the last missile defense test the US conducted?

Quite recently, actually. THere was one in 2002. Oh, and that one last month... http://www.mda.mil/mdalink/pdf/05fyi0061.pdf

R&D funding is no guarantee of innovation, however it is directly linked to it.

The point is that the Iranians are not stuck with Scuds

Oh my god. Is that what this is all about? I conceded the above in my last post! Bloody hell.

How would engineers unblock a straight that is guarded by anti ship missiles?

By neutralising the launch sites? Temporarily invading Iranian territory in close proximity to the gulf? I don't know, there are literally thousands of ways.

Weren’t we told that Iraq wudl be short sharp and sweet?

The war bit, yes. And it was. No one said the occupation would be. Just as no one is saying America should invade and occupy Iran. You just seem to think there's this dire plan afoot. America may attack Iran, certainly. However, I strongly doubt occupation would be part of the equation, simply because the Americans don't have the capacity to do so.

We are dealing with a series of "what ifs", here. Who knows how a conflict between Iran and the USA would pan out. I have to say, however, my money's on the USA (assuming they aren't trying to occupy Iran). And I reckon if you were honest, you'd concede yours is too.

Well, that’s an interesting point (the bit about attacking from Saudi) yes. you may be right.

I think I could be. And the more I think about it, I think I didn't even choose the right country. Kuwait - yes, Sunni, noisily pro-American, noisily anti-Iran Kuwait - is in a far more strategic location. Kuwait would certainly allow the US to use its territory as a base to clear the Persian gulf and neutralise an Iranian attempt at blockade.

it seems you are flying high on faith here

Well, I can't predict the future, so I suppose I am. But I reckon it's a pretty safe bet, considering that keeping the Persian Gulf clear is crucial for American oil supplies. I'm absolutely certain that would be the first objective the Yanks secure in the event of an attack.

And with guys like Rumsfeld at the helm, who don’t like listening to advice, they have become like a dinsosaur – big muscle but small brain.

Couldn't resist a bit more rhetoric, eh?

The only countermeasure that’s up to scruitiny is the Aegies system, which I read has had a mediocre success rate, but what do I know?

Probably about as much as I do, which is not a lot. Aegis is continually being upgraded, however. Since Sunburn has never been used in combat before, it's pretty hard to predict its true influence on a battle. However, I'm quite sure the Americans have intel on it and they would plan a strike with its capabilities in mind - ie because it's primarily an anti-ship weapon, they may not use carriers or much naval force. Why would they - they now have a perfectly good and enormous landing strip in nearby Kuwait.

I don't know if anyone else is following this thread still - pity. I'm having a nice time.

Cheerio!

Wednesday, October 19, 2005 4:14:00 am  
Blogger anthony said...

I don't know if anyone else is following this thread still - pity. I'm having a nice time.

I am.

Still salivating over Ted’s points. Heh heh…

Andre, not that I want to distract you from your debate (assuming you will come up with another quaint rebuttal):

Who's BS right of return are you referring to? Israel has one of those BTW, except that theirs extends throughout the globe.

Just in case your actually being serious- many anti-Israelis advocate the return of so-called refugees from the 1948 war of independence, even though most left the area by the order of their Arab masters (expecting the slaughter of the Jewish infidels to follow), and because Radio Cairo’s Propaganda at 9:00 scared them shitless- i.e., the Jews will eat your children and rape your wives, and other works of fiction. They also ignored David Ben-Gurion’s invitation to return following the conflict. The UN, in all its wisdom, let the problem breed out of control, and several Arab leaders have admitted the ‘refugee camps’ are political tools- just pawns ready to swamp the chessboard. This is what I am referring to- the idea that these Palestinians should be allowed to return to Israel as Israeli citizens, vote in Hamas and set up some gas chambers.

Israel is a sovereign nation, its immigration program is entirely just. I certainly wouldn’t call the emigration of 60,000+ Ethiopian Jews- who no other nation would take- to a better life BS as you imply.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005 11:16:00 pm  

Post a Comment

<< Home