Wednesday, November 18, 2009
Beyond Pinocchio: Iran's fake nuclear threat
If you've been taking the US and Britain's recent pronouncements on Iran seriously, you're probably just about ready to stock up on canned food and start digging a fallout shelter in your back garden.
Secret underground nuclear facilities? Breaches of non-proliferation rules? Dark hints of military action to stop the mad mullahs from a crazed attack on Israel?
To listen to Barack Obama and Gordon Brown, you'd think the world was plunging into a new cold war.
So we should treasure the words of former British diplomat Richard Dalton. They're a rare sign that someone in the Establishment is willing to talk sense on Iran - although Dalton doesn't go nearly far enough.
....Dalton could and should have been far more damning in his criticism of Western sabre-rattling. It's not enough to say there's no solid evidence of Iran's nuclear ambitions and no proof that the Qom facility is designed for making weapons. Technically true, certainly, but not enough by a long way.
Here's what Dalton could have said, if he wanted to tell the whole truth.
He could have said that Iran has no nuclear ambitions and no plans to attack any other country.
Iran has an official policy, restated again and again, of "no first strike." It hasn't started a war of aggression in modern history - unlike, say, the US, Britain or Israel. Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has forbidden nuclear weapons as un-Islamic and he maintains that Iran is not trying to develop them.
And the US intelligence agencies all agree that he's telling the truth.
You can read the whole of today’s excellent Morning Star editorial here.
Over the next few weeks and months we can prepare to be bombarded with propaganda that Iran’s non-existent nuclear weapons programme poses a ‘threat’ to the west.
And by and large the same people who will be trying to convince you that Iran is a ‘threat’ are the same people who told you that Yugoslav forces were committing ’genocide’ against the Kosovan Albanians in 1999, and that Iraq possessed WMDs in 2003.
Both those claims were totally bogus- as is the claim that Iran threatens us today.