James Clay Fuller

Things We're Not Supposed to Say

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Plan to attack Iran is set, experts agree

There is so much happening so quickly that it's hard to know what to report, what to comment on and what to do. The Bushies are overwhelming in their pursuit of everything wrong.

First, of course, is the coming attack on Iran.

The only small chance we, and the world, have to avert that disaster is for the American public to create an uproar such as this country hasn't seen since the peak of the Vietnam war protests, and how likely is that?

Expert after expert, people who have access to information far beyond my humble reach and energy and courage far beyond those of most reporters and editors, has come to the conclusion that the decision to bomb Iran already has been made. The only question not obviously already answered is nuke or no nuke.

Sean Rayment of The Telegraph in England reported April 2 that the British government was beginning secret talks to “consider the consequences” of the upcoming attack, which officials see as “inevitable” if Iran doesn't abandon its uranium enrichment program. And, of course, the Bush oligarchy has created conditions which make it impossible for Iran to comply with its escalating demands.

Paul Krugman of the New York Times laid out the facts for his readers about a week ago.

Norman Solomon, executive director of the Institute for Public Accuracy and author of “War Made Easy: How Presidents and Pundits Keep Spinning Us to Death,” said in a piece that, somewhat surprisingly, appeared in the Minneapolis Star Tribune April 18, that “the U.S. Government is very likely to launch a military attack on Iran within the next year” despite that fact that it has very little support for such a move among the citizens of the United States.

When the Bushies say they regard such an attack as a “last resort,” and will pursue diplomacy as long as possible, they are lying, Solomon concluded. White House strategists are deliberately trying to appear to be moving in one direction, but “are actually headed in another,” he said. They intend to take us to war in Iran.

Of course, as most progressives already have learned, Seymour Hersh, one of the very few truly trustworthy reporters covering such matters these days, said in a New Yorker piece this month that an attack appears inevitable.

Shortly after that New Yorker piece appeared, the Washington Post printed a long article that, though filled with “ifs” and “buts,” left the reader with the inescapable conclusion that, despite very strong opposition among military people and others with intimate knowledge of the situation, the attack will take place.

Further, the Post said, the administration has gone “beyond planning.” It has been flying survellance drones over Iran for about two years. The paper also noted Hersh's statement that U.S. combat troops already are in Iran collecting information to be used in aiming bombs and missiles. While the Post said it had not independently confirmed all of Hersh's information, the article clearly implied that it accepted his reporting as accurate.

It also pointed out, not incidentally, that Israel recently “leaked” information to the effect that it plans to attack Iran “if the United States does not.” Yeah, right. Another friendly Israeli nudge to our war machine to let Bush know that he shouldn't back down now.

Oh...In case you missed it or forgot about it because of the present focus on Iran, TomPaine.Common Sense, a highly reliable online news letter, reminded us April 17 that a major escalation of the war in Iraq is likely. That piece, written by Robert Dreyfuss, a contributing editor at The Nation, and a regular writer for Mother Jones and other publications, predicted that the Bush crowd will employ “massive U.S. Military air and ground” forces in yet another “shock and awe” effort.

It will be, Dreyfuss said “a desperate effort to tip the balance in Iraq in America's favor in advance of the 2006 elections.”

That prediction has been made, independently, by at least a dozen other reporters and commentators who closely follow military affairs and the Bush administration.

So here we are again. Just like four years ago. The Bush felons, zealots and nutcases are lying their heads off about pursuing “diplomacy” while preparing to follow through on the decision they've already made to attack Iran while also stepping up the level of violence in Iraq – primarily for the sake of maintaining their hold on power through this year's elections.

Deaths, maimings, mangled bodies, starvation, a hundred-fold increase in terrorism around the world? Who cares as long as the right wing maintains majorities in Congress?

The daily press and other “news media” are, of course, keeping us well informed about the situation. After all the humble pie they ate a few months ago, admitting that they let the Bushies get away with murder (literally, though they don't say so) on Iraq, they have to be straight with us this time, right?

Sure, and I'm Daddy Bush's twin brother.

Please, people. The chance of heading off the endless war is slim, but we have to try. Write every politician, every party official you can find and demand they work to stop the assault on Iran. Tell them you will do everything in your power to see them removed from office if they fail to act immediately. And follow up on that threat.

Important news you didn't see in your newspaper

While I'm talking about the press....

Here, in no particular order, are some other stories that have popped up in the past week or so that you've probably missed if you read only the American establishment press and/or get what news you can from television and radio:

*There's quite a flap developing over a situation in New Hampshire that was ignored by almost all of the establishment press. You figure the reasons.

In 2002, the Republican Party in New Hampshire paid $15,000-plus to a “consulting” company to jam the telephone lines at five sites from which supporters of former governor and Democratic senatorial candidate Jeanne Shaheen intended to make get-out-the-vote calls. She lost to the right-wing Republican John Sununu in a race that the Republicans regarded as central to their effort to retain control of the Senate.

The case went to court, and the executive director of the New Hampshire Republican Party and the president of the consulting firm pleaded guilty to criminal activity. James Tobin, New England political director for the Republican National Committee, was tried and convicted of telephone harassment this past December.

In the past few days, it has been learned that while the criminal activities were taking place, Tobin made at least 24 telephone calls to the White House political office run by Ken Mehlman, now chairman of the national Republican Party.

The party said it is “preposterous” to suggest that anyone in the White House had anything to do with the phone-blocking scheme. But, perhaps because they thought it was just a cute prank, the Republican National Committee paid an estimated $2.5 million to $3 million to the big-time Republican-connected law firm of Williams & Connolly for Tobin's legal defense. That law firm, incidentally, specializes in defending big-buck white-collar crooks.

Another recent development is the fact that thousands of dollars for Sununu's campaign came from one of Tom DeLay's questionable (to put it politely) political action committees and from a couple of Indian tribes. The tribes do no business in New Hampshire, but they were represented in Washington by one Jack Abramoff. Party people say the fact that the DeLay/Indian contributions totaled exactly the amount charged by the “consultant” for jamming the Democrats' phones is a coincidence.

The story is still developing. Don't look for it in your local newspaper, except perhaps as a four-paragraph bit about the legal spanking of some minor Republican operatives for some little political prank.

Could bring to mind a "third rate burglary" of a few decades ago, if you were around and aware during the Nixon years.

(Sources: New York Times and TomPaine.Common Sense.)

*Shortly after the 2003 State of the Union speech in which George Bush said he intended to “strengthen global treaties banning the production and shipment of missile technologies,” the Committee on Foreign Investments in the United States –- the same outfit that said it was OK for Dubai Ports World Company to take over operations of six U.S. Ports --permitted the last U.S. manufacturer of a key component of cruise missile guidance systems to relocate to China.

No, that's not a typo.

Magnequench UG, based in Indianapolis, produces neodymium-iron-boron permanent magnets which are critical to control systems in cruise missiles and the Joint Direct Attack Munition (JDAM) bomb that was heavily relied upon in the 2003 bombing of Baghdad before U.S. Troops entered the city. They have a number of other uses in military devices.

Magnequench moved all manufacture of the devices to Batou, China -– which also is the source of a rare earth material needed for the devices –- some time in 2003 or 2004. The company also has key defense (U.S. defense, mind you) plants in Tianjin, China.

(Source: Diane M. Grassi article for Veterans for Common Sense.)

*Several hundred people, possibly thousands, gathered outside the Bush ranch near Crawford, Texas, over the Easter weekend to protest George Bush's continuing war in Iraq. A number of well-known people took part.

(Sources: Several on line news and political reports.)

*Iran recently created a “high-level” delegation to hold bilateral discussions with the United States on a wide range of issues. However, the Bush administration refuses to meet, and objects to one agenda item after another proposed by Iran.

(Source: The London-based Financial Times.)

*Iran has formed “battalions” of suicide bombers to strike at American and British targets if the nation's nuclear sites are attacked. Iranian officials said 40,000 individuals have been trained as suicide bombers.

“We are ready to attack American and British sensitive points if they attack Iran's nuclear facilities,” said Hassan Abbasi, head of Iran's Center for Doctrinal Strategic Studies in the Revolutionary Guards.

(Source: London-based Times Online)

I could go on and on and on listing the important stories that are not getting to the American public, at least the broader public. If this country continues on its present path, and our democracy is lost, it will because of the failures of the cowards and fools who control our airwaves and presses.