Politicians Want War With Iran
by Eric Margolis: Graveyard
The war of
words between the US, Israel, and Iran intensifies by the day.
All the parties
involved are shamelessly playing to domestic audiences in this election
year. Israel keeps issuing threats it will attack Iranís nuclear
power installations, though some of its senior security officials
downplay an alleged threat from Iran.
still maintains Iran is not working on nuclear weapons. UN nuclear
inspectors confirm this view, though they have been pressured by
the US, which pays a quarter of UN salaries, to suggest Iran might
be working on something nefarious Ė though all Iranís nuclear sites
are under strict UN inspection and satellite surveillance.
Not a peep
from the UN about what global damage would be caused by an Israeli
attack on Iranís nuclear sites. Radioactive dust storms, to say
The US Congress
pulsates with war fever, fuelled by oncoming elections and huge
cash donations. North Americaís media pounds the war drums.
spectacular public relations ineptitude by fulminating against Israel,
calling it a "tumor" that must be removed, and firing
obsolete tactical missiles and staging flamboyant military exercises
by its feeble armed forces.
In fact, Iran
is doing the work of Israelís hard-right Likud government by convincing
the world that the Jewish state faces another Holocaust. Canadaís
blustering, ill-informed foreign minister just repeated this absurd
canard even though Iran is not believed to have any nuclear weapons.
He preposterously compared Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad
hawkish defense minister recently opined that Iran is still some
years away from having the ability to deploy a nuclear-armed missile.
Few ask the
sensible question: why would Iran risk nuclear vaporization by Israel
and or the US just to launch a small number of its inaccurate missiles
at Israel? US and Israeli early warning satellites would spot any
Iranian missiles at launch and bring down a nuclear holocaust on
the Islamic Republic.
American partisans, whipped into a frenzy of alarm by a clever scare
campaign designed to boost the fortunes of Benjamin Netanyahuís
Likud Party, reply that Iran is run by madman who seek nuclear martyrdom.
Over in the
Mideast and parts of Europe, Israelís Likud leadership, notably
the Russian-born foreign minister, Avigdor Lieberman, who Israeli
leftist often denounce as a deranged fascist, is regarded with as
much alarm as Iranís hot-headed leaders. "Those crazy Iranians
and Israelis are going to start a nuclear disaster on our doorstop,"
one European politician said to me.
The Iran crisis
has benefitted politicians in the US and Israel by defocusing public
anger from the ongoing economic crisis in both nations, and by almost
totally obscuring the Palestinianís quest for recognition and statehood.
Little wars are famously beneficial for politicians.
Obama and Netanyahu expect to reap dividends from "getting
tough" on the latest miscreant in a long line of Muslim bogeymen.
Think back to the western powerís demonization of Gamal abdel-Nasser,
whom Anthony Eden called, "Hitler on the Nile;" to "arch
terrorist" Yasser Arafat; to "mad dog of the Mideast"
Muammar Khadaffi; to "Butcher of Baghdad" Saddam Hussein;
"Mr 9/11" Osama bin Laden; and now "the new Hitler"
Here we go
again. These targets of western wrath and vilification actually
seem to enjoy their starring roles as villains and hate figures.
Any publicity is better than no publicity.
amid all the threats is another simple question. Why are Iran and
Israel at scimitarís drawn? After all, under the late, unlamented
Shah, Israel and Iran used to be bosom buddies. Even under the late
Ayatollah Khomeini, a big hate figure in the Jewish world, Israel
secretly sold some $5 billion worth of US arms and spare parts to
Iran during its long, bloody, 1980ís war with Iraq.
The main reason
is that Islamic Iran has become the primary champion of the Palestinians
now that the Arab states Ė and notably Syria Ė are on the ropes.
Iraq, formerly a leading champion of the Palestinians, was crushed
by the US. Iran is next on the chopping block if the US American-Israel
Public Affairs Committee has its way.
A fair Israel-Palestinian
deal would end the crisis between Israel and Iran. So would a Mideast
nuclear-free zone. But no one dares pose this simple solution.
him mail] is the author of War
at the Top of the World and the new book, American
Raj: Liberation or Domination?: Resolving the Conflict Between the
West and the Muslim World. See his
© 2012 Eric Margolis
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