Friday, February 9, 2007

Iran news

Here are several recent pieces that shed some light on the increasing threats by the Cheney-Bush administration against Iran.

The Persian Gulf: a war of position Paul Rogers, 02/08/07, Rogers notes that "the naval forces now gathering in the region include two carrier battle-groups and two expeditionary strike groups, with the possibility of yet another carrier battle-group, centred on the USS Ronald Reagan, being barely ten days away." He estimates that these factors amount to a naval buildup that would peak around the end of March or early April. But he argues that the greater risk may be some sort of accident slide into war than any deliberate intention on the part of the Cheney-Bush administration to start one.

Tom Engelhardt, on the other hand, reminds us that the last five years give us all good reason to worry about how Dick Cheney and George Bush are looking at this in
Thelma and Louise Imperialism: Over the Cliff with George and Dick? 02/08/07.

Dan Froomkin at writes on
How the press can prevent another Iraq 02/02/2007 . But if the following article is any measure, the prospects of the Establishment media doing a much better job of evaluating war propaganda against Iran than they did war propaganda against Iraq: Terror Watch: Doubts About Iran Intel/President Bush insists that Iraq's neighbor is fueling the insurgency in Baghdad. Does the intelligence back him up? by Michael Isikoff and Mark Hosenball Newsweek Online 02/08/07. As a general rule, achieving "balance" by setting off careful skepticism against unproven and/or unprobable war propaganda doesn't constitute responsible reporting.

Helena Cobban believes the US will be forced to withdraw from Iraq in the foreseeable future, as she explains in
More thinking on the coming withdrawal Just World News blog 02/09/07.

Also on Iranian affairs, these are useful recent articles: The
Fall: Consequences of US Withdrawal From Iraq by Martin van Creveld New Perspectives Quarterly Winter 2007, which Cobban calls a "must-read"; Helping Israel Die by Ray McGovern 02/09/07, which explores some of the potentially grim consequences for Israel's security in the event Cheney and Bush widen the war to Iran; and, Bush's Iran madness by Gary Kamiya Salon 02/06/07, on the bizarre assumptions behind the administration's Middle East policies.


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