How low can Downer go?

Our embarrassing foreign minister, Downer, has done it again, brazenly out-toadying his lackey leader, lecturing those uncharitable, churlish Europeans and their media who might dare to question the wisdom of the illegal invasion of Iraq, despite Americans questioning it wholeheartedly themselves, both in government and on the street. Shades of Lon Cheney’s “Be careful what you say” post 911 imperial decree.

“In an interview with The Daily Telegraph, Alexander Downer urged European politicians to weigh up the consequences of their words before they “leap out there and attack America”.

Mr Downer gave warning that criticism of America’s conduct in Iraq could inadvertently provide an incentive for terrorist attacks.

“People in the West, and not only in Europe, blame America for a suicide bomber in a market in Baghdad,” he said.

“That only encourages more horrific behaviour. Every time there is an atrocity committed, it is implicitly America’s fault, so why not commit some more atrocities and put even more pressure on America?”
….

“The more you can get media denigration of America, the more that the war against terrorism is seen to be an indictment of America, the better for those who started this war.”

Media critical of America is good for those who started the war – the neoziocons? What is Downer trying to propaganderise here? Does he think Al Qaeda somehow started the war in Iraq by waving a magic wand over Bush, Cheney and the rest of the warmongering, psychotic loons?

Unbeknownst to the hapless, witless Downer, his fat foot once more in his mouth, he has given the Iraqi insurgents some wonderful encouragement – according to him, their supposed strategy is a winner. Fat chance that Europeans or the media are going to stop criticising America because of Downer’s abysmal pseudo-logic.

Perhaps in his inadequate amphibian brain, only non-American atrocities count as *real* atrocities and have no logical, reasonable cause at all, or is he automagically blaming the victims, attempting to shift the blame from the actual perpetrators of the war against Iraq? This disconnect is already rife amongst braindead flagwavers – to question the empire, no matter how brutal, self-serving and self-defeating it is, is treasonous – so everything is always someone else’s fault, not the perps’. The simple undeniable fact is that there would not *be* suicide bombers in Baghdad markets if the Coalition of the Gobbling hadn’t stupidly, wilfully and illegally invaded Iraq. Are we meant to forget this by withholding criticism of the fools who deliberately and with malice aforethought created the mess which has engendered such gruesome and ongoing outcomes? To collude with such madness through silence one would have to be mad oneself.

Those who do not learn from history are condemned to repeat it – and so the neoziotards are hoping for the next stop already – Iran.

The rampage in Iraq will end when it becomes clear the “surge” and escalated aerial bombings aren’t working either and the Americans leave, as the Iraqis have wanted for years and as now the overwhelming majority of Americans also want, regardless or in spite of further loss of imperial face. And *that*, with any luck, will discourage the disgraceful warmongers from further misadventurism for fun and profit in the region for quite some time.

Coalition of the Gobbling vs Iran V

Brzezinski, grand master of the Great Game and unrepentant original architect of the rise of Bin Laden and the Afghanistan mess, has thrown the book at the mad chimp, warning that he is seeking a pretext to whack Iran, ironic considering Brzezinski’s own Machiavellian manipulations and designs on preventing the “barbarians”, Russia, China and Iran, from coming together.

Testifying before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on Thursday, Zbigniew Brzezinski, the national security adviser in the Carter administration, delivered a scathing critique of the war in Iraq and warned that the Bush administration’s policy was leading inevitably to a war with Iran, with incalculable consequences for US imperialism in the Middle East and internationally.

Brzezinski, who opposed the March 2003 invasion and has publicly denounced the war as a colossal foreign policy blunder, began his remarks on what he called the “war of choice” in Iraq by characterizing it as “a historic, strategic and moral calamity.”

“Undertaken under false assumptions,” he continued, “it is undermining America’s global legitimacy. Its collateral civilian casualties as well as some abuses are tarnishing America’s moral credentials. Driven by Manichean principles and imperial hubris, it is intensifying regional instability.”

Brzezinski derided Bush’s talk of a “decisive ideological struggle” against radical Islam as “simplistic and demagogic,” and called it a “mythical historical narrative” employed to justify a “protracted and potentially expanding war.”

“To argue that America is already at war in the region with a wider Islamic threat, of which Iran is the epicenter, is to promote a self-fulfilling prophecy,” he said.

Most stunning and disturbing was his description of a “plausible scenario for a military collision with Iran.” It would, he suggested, involve “Iraqi failure to meet the benchmarks, followed by accusations of Iranian responsibility for the failure, then by some provocation in Iraq or a terrorist act in the US blamed on Iran, culminating in a ‘defensive’ US military action against Iran that plunges a lonely America into a spreading and deepening quagmire eventually ranging across Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan and Pakistan.” [Emphasis added].

This was an unmistakable warning to the US Congress, replete with quotation marks to discount the “defensive” nature of such military action, that the Bush administration is seeking a pretext for an attack on Iran. Although he did not explicitly say so, Brzezinski came close to suggesting that the White House was capable of manufacturing a provocation—including a possible terrorist attack within the US—to provide the casus belli for war.

That a man such as Brzezinski, with decades of experience in the top echelons of the US foreign policy establishment, a man who has the closest links to the military and to intelligence agencies, should issue such a warning at an open hearing of the US Senate has immense and grave significance.

Brzezinski knows whereof he speaks, having authored provocations of his own while serving as Jimmy Carter’s national security adviser. In that capacity, as he has since acknowledged in published writings, he drew up the covert plan at the end of the 1970s to mobilize Islamic fundamentalist mujaheddin to topple the pro-Soviet regime in Afghanistan and draw the Soviet Union into a ruinous war in that country.

Following his opening remarks, in response to questions from the senators, Brzezinski reiterated his warning of a provocation.

He called the senators’ attention to a March 27, 2006 report in the New York Times on “a private meeting between the president and Prime Minister Blair, two months before the war, based on a memorandum prepared by the British official present at this meeting.” In the article, Brzezinski said, “the president is cited as saying he is concerned that there may not be weapons of mass destruction found in Iraq, and that there must be some consideration given to finding a different basis for undertaking the action.”

He continued: “I’ll just read you what this memo allegedly says, according to the New York Times: ‘The memo states that the president and the prime minister acknowledged that no unconventional weapons had been found inside Iraq. Faced with the possibility of not finding any before the planned invasion, Mr. Bush talked about several ways to provoke a confrontation.’

“He described the several ways in which this could be done. I won’t go into that… the ways were quite sensational, at least one of them.

“If one is of the view that one is dealing with an implacable enemy that has to be removed, that course of action may under certain circumstances be appealing. I’m afraid that if this situation in Iraq continues to deteriorate, and if Iran is perceived as in some fashion involved or responsible, or a potential beneficiary, that temptation could arise.”

At another point Brzezinski remarked on the conspiratorial methods of the Bush administration and all but described it as a cabal. “I am perplexed,” he said, “by the fact that major strategic decisions seem to be made within a very narrow circle of individuals—just a few, probably a handful, perhaps not more than the fingers on my hand. And these are the individuals, all of whom but one, who made the original decision to go to war, and used the original justifications to go to war.”

None of the senators in attendance addressed themselves to the stark warning from Brzezinski. The Democrats in particular, flaccid, complacent and complicit in the war conspiracies of the Bush administration, said nothing about the danger of a provocation spelled out by the witness.

Following the hearing, this reporter asked Brzezinski directly if he was suggesting that the source of a possible provocation might be the US government itself. The former national security adviser was evasive.

The following exchange took place:

Q: Dr. Brzezinski, who do you think would be carrying out this possible provocation?

A: I have no idea. As I said, these things can never be predicted. It can be spontaneous.

Q: Are you suggesting there is a possibility it could originate within the US government itself?

A: I’m saying the whole situation can get out of hand and all sorts of calculations can produce a circumstance that would be very difficult to trace.

Vid of Brzezinski’s testimony here …

PDF download of testimony.

Brzezinski testimonies to the US Senate Foreign Relations Committee since the above:

Strategic Assessment of U.S.- Russian Relations (06/21/2007)

OIL, OLIGARCHS, AND OPPORTUNITY: ENERGY FROM CENTRAL ASIA TO EUROPE (06/12/2008)

U.S. STRATEGY REGARDING IRAN (03/05/2009)

FINDING COMMON GROUND WITH A RISING CHINA (06/23/2010)

Plamegate – the Chimp did it

Libby is on the block.

Yet, even as Bush was professing his curiosity and calling for anyone with information to step forward, he was withholding the fact that he had authorized the declassification of some secrets about the alleged Iraqi nuclear program and had ordered Cheney to arrange for those secrets to be given to reporters.

Bush’s behind-the-scenes role came into clearer focus later with the release of a court document citing testimony from Libby, who claimed Bush approved the selective release of intelligence in July 2003 to counter growing complaints that Bush had hyped evidence about Iraq’s pursuit of yellowcake uranium in Niger.

Libby testified that he was told by Cheney that Bush had approved a plan in which Libby would tell a specific New York Times reporter about the CIA’s secret analysis, according to a court filing by special prosecutor Fitzgerald.”

Impeachment soon, surely?

The Israel Lobby vs The Iraq Study Group Report

When will Americans wake up to the subversion and manipulation of their country by the Israel? when they wake up to their own manipulation by their ruling elite which benefits from the arms trade.

The power of think tanks to shape public discussion and ultimately public policy was demonstrated before the Iraq war when public perceptions concerning Iraq were informed by a well-funded network of think tanks connected in many intimate ways to a pro-Israel political lobby that actively supported Bush’s Iraq policy.

The same actors are already marshaling against the report and the report’s subdued yet explicit linking of wider Middle East problems with Iraq:

“There must be a renewed and sustained commitment by the United States to a comprehensive Arab-Israeli peace on all fronts: Lebanon, Syria, and President Bush’s June 2002 commitment to a two-state solution for Israel and Palestine.”

The report directly connects Israel to Iraq in a way that unsettles Israel’s supporters, stating,

“The United States cannot achieve its goals in the Middle East unless it deals directly with the Arab-Israeli conflict…”

Because of this, we already see, among others, Israel and its foreign policy advocates in America piling on criticism. Some are starting to deconstruct the report as a defeatist document produced by a spineless liberal establishment.

The critics have something in common, a high regard for Israel and the notion that Israeli foreign policy objectives are always the same as US foreign policy objectives.

In the case of Iraq, this equation is patently false. The United States is suffering from Bush’s adventure in Iraq and Israel is benefiting from the chaos resulting from it.

This report deserves to be read and discussed rather than blithely dismissed. The critics may howl, yet none dare call it treason.”

Rumsfeld OKed torture

With Karpinski willing to testify, happily Rummie’s future looks very bleak. Karma is sweet.

Outgoing Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld authorized the mistreatment of detainees at Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq, the prison’s former U.S. commander said in an interview on Saturday.

Former U.S. Army Brigadier General Janis Karpinski told Spain’s El Pais newspaper she had seen a letter apparently signed by Rumsfeld which allowed civilian contractors to use techniques such as sleep deprivation during interrogation.

Karpinski, who ran the prison until early 2004, said she saw a memorandum signed by Rumsfeld detailing the use of harsh interrogation methods.

“The handwritten signature was above his printed name and in the same handwriting in the margin was written: “Make sure this is accomplished”,” she told Saturday’s El Pais.