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As if the prospect of a possible tactical nuclear strike against Iran were not sufficient to raise alarm bells about the Bush Administration's intentions of initiating another war, we now learn from Larisa Alexandrovna that the US has been conducting secret Special Forces operations and attacks against Iran for almost a year using a former right wing Iraqi terrorist organization known as Mujahedeen-e Khalq (MEK).  

Today, April 13, 2006, Larisa Alexandrovna publishes a story in Rawstory, entitled: US outsourcing special operations, intelligence to Iraq terror group, current and former intelligence officials say.  And in an eerie reminder of our modus operandi in Iraq, it appears that the Pentagon is once again flaunting State Department and National Security Council objections and is pushing on secretly on its own.  

If anyone still doubts the value and urgency of calling for Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld's resignation immediately, please read this article.  We must get a sane, rational leader of the Department of Defense before Rumsfeld is allowed to add another whole dimension of chaos to this region.

UPDATE Larrisa has updated this story with two additions: 1. Editor's note: An earlier version of this story incorrectly identified the geographic position of Khuzestan Province. We apologize for any confusion this may have caused. 2. Larrisa is now reporting that Dick Cheney was the one to authorize this operation.

Converting Terrorists To Freedom Fighters?  Or The Reverse?

Murky operations like this beg the question.  Are we turning terrorists into freedom fighters?  Or Freedom fighters into terrorists.  Or just recycling terrorists?

The Pentagon is bypassing official US intelligence channels and turning to a dangerous and unruly cast of characters in order to create strife in Iran in preparation for any possible attack, former and current intelligence officials say.

One of the operational assets being used by the Defense Department is a right-wing terrorist organization known as Mujahedeen-e Khalq (MEK), which is being "run" in two southern regional areas of Iran, both bordering Pakistan. They are Balucistan, a Sunni stronghold, and Khuzestan, a Shia region where a series of recent attacks has left many dead and hundreds injured in the last three months.

One former counterintelligence official, who wished to remain anonymous due to the sensitivity of the information, describes the Pentagon as pushing MEK shortly after the invasion of Iraq in 2003. The drive to use the insurgent group was said to have been advanced by the Pentagon under the influence of the Vice President's office and opposed by the State Department, National Security Council and then-National Security Advisor, Condoleezza Rice.

Paul Wolfowitz Thinks Ahead: Saving Up Terrorists For A Rainy Day

What would you do if you stumbled upon a perfectly good band of highly trained and experienced terrorists while crushing Iraq?  Send them to GITMO for interrogation?  No way.  GITMO is for consfused  street people, unlucky drivers, and bush boys.  

If you have an honest to goodness full well organized and armed group of real terrorists, Paul Wolfowitz is that kind of visionary neocon you want looking out for your future.  

"The MEK is run by a brother and sister who were given bases in northern Baghdad by Saddam," the intelligence official told RAW STORY. "The US army secured a key MEK facility 60 miles northwest of Baghdad shortly after the 2003 invasion, but they did not secure the MEK and let them basically be because [then Deputy Defense Secretary Paul] Wolfowitz was thinking ahead to Iran."

Another former intelligence official added that the US military had detained as many as 3,500 members of MEK at Iraq's Camp Ashraf since the start of the war, including the highest level ranking MEK leaders. Ashraf is about 60 miles west of the Iranian border.

This intelligence official, wishing to remain anonymous, confirmed the policy tensions and also described them as most departments on one side and the Pentagon on the other.

Can Our Military Be A Learning Organization? British Show "Institutional" Learning I Possible

If we look at all the mistakes in Iraq that present themselves as learning opportunities, one rises to the top of the list--, the value and need for greater collaboration, listening, and advance planning for all of our intelligence, national security, state department, and Pentagon experts.  

While I understand the great eagerness and gung ho - can do spirit of secret black ops forces whom see great opportunities to get a head start in destabilizing Iran and training up indigenous insurgent forces, this impulse must be balanced, guided,  and restrained by those with a more cautious and wiser understanding of the bigger picture of US National Security Interests.

But the restraining forces of strategy, wisdom, and consideration of consequences easily get diminished in this grass roots black ops inspiration.  But at least Condoleezza Rice is training to restrain the incorrigible Donald Rumsfeld and Dick Cheney.  Why does this start to feel like one of those ridiculous frat house movies like Porky.  Boys will be boys.  

"We disarmed [the MEK] of major weapons but not small arms. [Secretary of Defense Donald] Rumsfeld was pushing to use them as a military special ops team, but policy infighting between their camp and Condi, but she was able to fight them off for a while," said the intelligence official.

According to still another intelligence source, the policy infighting ended last year when Donald Rumsfeld, under pressure from Vice President Cheney, came up with a plan to "convert" the MEK by having them simply quit their organization.

"These guys are nuts," this intelligence source said. "Cambone and those guys made MEK members swear an oath to Democracy and resign from the MEK and then our guys incorporated them into their unit and trained them."

Stephen Cambone is the Undersecretary of Defense Intelligence. His office did not return calls for comment.

Recent bomb attacks in Iran have been linked to former Baathist group
Eight killed in Iran bomb attacks
Bomb blasts hit Iran oil cities
Bomb blasts rock Iran
According to all three intelligence sources, military and intelligence officials alike were alarmed that instead of securing a known terrorist organization, which has been responsible for acts of terror against Iranian targets and individuals all over the world - including US civilian and military casualties - Rumsfeld under instructions from Cheney, began using the group on special ops missions into Iran to pave the way for a potential Iran strike.

"They are doing whatever they want, no oversight at all," one intelligence source said.

The wildest dreams of every teenage boy.  Imagine the fun of having you own private army of secret black ops right wing terrorists, with sworn loyalties to do you bidding.  And completely free of all those frustrating and inconvenient constraints one has with official US secret black ops  agents who flinch when ordered to commit war crimes or violate Geneva Conventions.

MEK Was Part of Saddam Hussein's Secret Police, "We Are Already At War,"

As if Bush hasn't already learned the danger of sliding into wars without declaration our national consensus.  One issue with the start fo the Iraq War that obviously did not get enough press or discussion was the slippery way we got into it.

So much has been made of the Bush Administration Lies, Intelligence Manipulations, and Powells Falsification the ritual sham of a UN presentation, that perhaps, we haven't put enough attention to the fact that the US had been bombing the Northern and Southern No Fly zones, and conducting extensive "black ops" missions for years in advance.  

And for at least a year, the Department of Defense had been accelerating the agreesiveness of these actions pushing the border.  Bombing missions "strayed across" the no fly zones against other targets.  And special ops forces made more ambitious strikes against targets inside of "Central Iraq."

We really had a rolling start of a war that was well in progress, before Bush even when through the motions of Congressional approval.  This is probably why Bush and his administration were so brazen and uncareful in this shame.  They never did respect that Congress is supposed to be the body to actually declare and authorize war.

Here we seem the same pattern.  Has Bush and his Administration learned nothing from the Iraq disaster.  This limit of power is not an inconvenience to get around, it is a built in checks and balance to improve the quality of thinking.  Founders organized our government with the understanding that "power corrupts, absolutely power corrupts absolutely."


 

Indeed, Saddam Hussein himself had used the MEK for acts of terror against non-Sunni Muslims and had assigned domestic security detail to the MEK as a way of policing dissent among his own people. It was under the guidance of MEK `policing' that Iraqi citizens who were not Sunni were routinely tortured, attacked and arrested.

Although the specifics of what the MEK is being used for remain unclear, a UN official close to the Security Council explained that the newly renamed MEK soldiers are being run instead of military advance teams, committing acts of violence in hopes of staging an insurgency of the Iranian Sunni population.

"We are already at war," the UN official told RAW STORY.

Asked how long the MEK agents have been active in the region under the guidance of the US military civilian leadership, the UN official explained that the clandestine war had been going on for roughly a year and included unmanned drones run jointly by several agencies.

Repetition Compulsion: Deju Vu All Over Again," "Brits Dragging Their Feet"

In a stunning repeat of pre-war Iraq activities, the Bush administration continues to publicly call for action and pursue diplomatic solutions to allegations that Iran is bomb-ready. Behind the scenes, however, the administration is already well underway and engaged in ground operations in Iran.

The British, however, are less enthused about a strike in Iran. British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw has called an American strike on Iran "inconceivable," while Prime Minister Tony Blair has said he's keeping all his options open. Asked about the MEK, a senior British intelligence official said that the Brits are not yet sure of what the situation on Iran's southern border is, but vehemently condemned any joint activity with the terrorist organization.

"We don't know who precisely is carrying out those attacks in the south but we believe it is MEK," the British official said.

When asked if the US military is running the MEK, the source was careful to indicate that while there is a US unit in Iran gathering information, it's difficult to say if they are in any way involved with MEK.

British Have Strict Rule Against Consorting With Terrorists.  Learned Lessons In Northern Ireland

"The people who are inside Iran are from a US Special mission unit," the source explained. "They are called by codenames, but would not be involved in the bomb blasts. They want to get in, get the intelligence and go out with anyone knowing they have been there. But the bomb blasts might be diversions away from the operations by this US special mission unit. The British are definitely not involved in any of this."

Moreover, the British official expressed that any operations with MEK would violate their own military code and would absolutely not be tolerated.

"We have very strict rules and can't go consorting with terrorists," the official added. "We did it in Northern Ireland. No more."

Conclusions

Well at least the British seem to be learning from past mistakes.  CNN did an excellent special on lessons learned from governments experience with  national terrorists groups  The key insight confirmed theoretical work I've done myself.  The key insight was best articulated by Mahatma Gandhi in response to the often quoted advice often attributed to Machiavellian.  "The ends justifies the means."  Gandhi rejected this.  As does the British and my own analysis of "opposition groups whether we call them "freedom fighters" or "terrorists." Empirical analysis and Gandhi suggest the "means is the ends in the process of becoming."

We usually do not achieve greater goodness, by sacrificing our values, wisdom, and integrity in the short term to achieve it.  

I call for all good people of wisdom in the national security, intelligence, and political communities to call for Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld and Vice President Dick Cheney to resign and be replaced with better leaders of at least some minimum level of competence and integrity they so clearly lack.  

Originally posted to Lolligolli on Thu Apr 13, 2006 at 10:57 AM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

    •  Good Lord! (7+ / 0-)

      Each day that passes, my country shames me more and more

      The Christian Right is neither Witness Every Day

      by TXsharon on Thu Apr 13, 2006 at 11:38:06 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I know, this is so terrible. I already so the (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        northsylvania, hubcap, berko, HoundDog

        post below from a forign reader who can barely contain his/her anger at us.

        I still believe most Americans are basically good at heart, but how are we going to retore our reputation?

        I hope it does not require the kinds of humuliating and/or war crimes trial Germany and Japan had to go through to overcome their arrogance.

        As I get older (not that old, just "er") I gain more appreciation for the wisdom contained on so many "wives tale" and nursery rymthes.

        Like "Pride goeth before the fall."  The Greek tragedies were rife with tales of the terrible consequences of Hubris.

        Arrogance can blind us from the empathy needs to truly evaluate the impact of our unilateral actions on other.  

        And not group of people I've ever studied embody this kind of pathologigal arrogance than Donald Rumsfeld, Dick Cheney, George Bush, Karl Rove, and their neocon minions.

        I am aware of all the "realistic" advice suggesting that impeachment is only a practical possibility in 2007 or 2008, by which time it's easier just to focus on the election.

        But the thought of leaving this criminal and incompetent gang of desparadoes in the White House, with such a great emotional need to vidicate themselves is just too dangerous.

        I almost did my diary today on the concept of "the Gamblers Ruin"

        A concept from Cognitive Psychology describing the state of mind and behavioral pathology of a decision maker who is unable to walk away from a disasterous losing streak.

        Under the misquided notion that "because he has lost so much already" he has incrementally less marginal risk by placing increasingly wild bet, hoping irrationally for the big win to redeem his disasterous losses."

        But mathemeticians know probability has no memory.

        And in this case, Bush has already lost the maximum credibility.  So he is now betting with the "money" or assets of others.  The American people.

        Do you see my point?  A totally wild last resort gamble where he puts everything on the table and takes one more roll of the dice on a war with Iraq makes sense for Bush, Cheney, and Rumsfeld.

        If they win, and accomplish their neocon dreams of "remodeling the middle east" they are heros once again (in their own minds and expectations.)

        But if they do not gamble and merely admit defeat they have lost everything.

        They all imagine that they could not be hated more.  

        So this major discontinued of the perceived risk profile and pay off ratio, is non-representative of the profiles of the American people.

        Or professional military planners, and anyone else with a strategic background based on Sun Tze's The Art Of Warfare which has inspired eons of objective analysis of warfare.

        Which, contrary to popular belief, usually makes professional military analysts and intelligence professionals much more cautious about launching a war than the average person.

        Sun Tzu's advice was never take risks on war, it's to dangerous and unpredictable.

        Never start a war until you've already won it.

        Bush, Cheney, and Rumsfeld are doing exactly the opposite.  They have hopeless lost, and now are dangerously gambling that a massive escalation could chance the rules of the game and playing field.

        It's urgent to get these disabled and dysfunctional players off the field ASAP.

        It will be up to the GOP, who will have to help us due to their majority in Congress.

        But their are members of the GOP who understand what I am describing here well.

        •  Are americans so good at heart? (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          HoundDog

          I reject that premise for a variety of reasons.  When we side with Radical, Communist Islamists to do our dirty deads, we have taken a covenant with the devil or the Great Evil or whatever...

          The American People support this in broad strokes...

          The American People have brought this upon themselves.

          Americans are to blame. Americans were the terrorists all along.

          I need to go outside and walk or something. This blows my mind.  We haven't fallen off the cliff, we've nuked a canyon to fall deeper into this murky pit

          •  You may be correct kubla000. I use a creativity (0+ / 0-)

            technique sometimes where I temporarily assume that the opposite of whatever I like to believe is actually more true.

            The exercise requires you to keep trying to tell this opposite version of event until you can make a plausible case.

            In this case, let's imagine we were wrong for a moment and that instead of being the good guys, we are the evil ones.

            How could we make an argument that the American people are among the most selfish, arrogant, self-centered, destructive, and hateful group to ever stalk the planet?  

            What evidence would you site?  

            Sadly, this turns out not to be as challenging a thought experiment as I hoped.

            Helping to bring justice back to the White House, one indictment at a time.

            by HoundDog on Thu Apr 13, 2006 at 02:32:14 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  The slow drip of reality (0+ / 0-)

              Like Chinese water torture.

              My friend at work, her words exactly, "I'm a small woman so I want a big car, a big SUV"... after she trades in her Civic and showed no interest in the new Hybrids.

              I think that we're a victim of our success, and our God Given Right to be Americans.

              To a point, we've taken it too far. The Luxuries are getting the better of us, and for what this generation enjoys in wealth and plenty, the next will suffer in famine, weak dollars, threats of real foreign invasions, and joblessness...

              Our need for Greed drove us to make everything super efficient, make it oversees, and take it if it wasn't given to us.  The people voted for all of this with their dollars.  When we started buying SUV's and paying for all that gas, our graves were dug.  Now, in time, we will atone for our sins against the rest of the world.

              I really think Americans are becoming an evil people.  I'm sure I'd catch alot of heat for such an opinion, but to sit by, not rise up in anger, and throw this group of bums out for the heresy they've made of our Democracy is simply beyond me.

        •  The only thing we can do to achieve any (0+ / 0-)

          redemption is to IMPEACH and Imprison!  That is not nearly enough but it's a start.

          Censure is not enough!  We must IMPEACH!

          The Christian Right is neither Witness Every Day

          by TXsharon on Thu Apr 13, 2006 at 12:40:39 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  its not our country that shames you... (0+ / 0-)

        its the current (hopefully) Temp help sqauting in our white house.

        "if all the world's a stage, who is sitting in the audience?"

        by KnotIookin on Thu Apr 13, 2006 at 02:27:15 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  One sec (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Lolligolli, lazybum

      I was in Iraq during the first year, and I wasa at that MEK facility. From what I remember of the intelligence and security briefings, they were described as an organization comprised of Iranian (Sunni) rebels that Saddam gave safe harbor to ostensibly because they wanted to overthrow the Iranian gov.

      They were disarmed in the areas I was in for the most part. What eventually became of their organization, I don't know.

      This new description seems pretty far out. I don't ever remember them being described as part of Saddam's police. As far as anyone knew, they were a bunch of old guys waiting for a chance to overthrow Iran. I mean these guys were old. Perhaps they got some new blood.

      I can believe that they are either being used to foment rebellion in Iran or are doing it on their own because that was their intention as an organization. Beyond that, the description seems somewhat over the top.

      Citizen, Sergeant US Army (Former), Veteran OIF 1

      by liquidbread on Thu Apr 13, 2006 at 11:57:27 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Lessons Learned, Questions, + Action Steps (0+ / 0-)

        I appreciate you cautions liquidbread.  I should

        be clear that I have no other sources of information than what I've read and reported here in this link to Larisa's article.

        I will be glad to make whatever retractions or clarification that are necessary and appropriate.

        Is you objection the line about Suddam perhaps using MEK in the past as part of a private secret police force or the whole report that the US Special forces operations might be using them for disruptive operations inside Iran?

        I will do some additional googling on this to see how much confirmation I can find.

        Or perhaps, others here already know more about this than I do.

        I've heard a lot of rumors about secret black ops operations going on not only in Iran but around the globe, but haven't really tried to study them well enough to claim any special knowlegdge.

        I apppreciate you cautions here.  

        We should all be careful to analyze this well.  One of my goals for this comment section of this diary will be to clarify you question and collectively determine what we all think of the validity of these reports.  

        Like an "afteraction report"

        Anyone familiar with any "lesson learned" methodology or even just who has insights you would like to add please offer them, up.

        I hope to be engaging actively in the discussions troughout the day, but am pretty busy organizing a visit from my son through the spring holiday.

        I usually just start a column called

        "Insights, Questions, Action Steps and Lessions Learned" with bullet points.

        Anyone here whom wants to suggest bullet points go ahead.  In fact I'll change the title of this so it can be a flag.  

        And I invite you and anyone else to park insight and questions in the reply to indentation under this comment.  

      •  This will back you up (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Shockwave, HoundDog

        http://library.nps.navy.mil/...

        They've been active for years, they probably ARE pretty old.

        Much more information at the link, but here's a bit.

        Strength
        Over 3,000 MEK members are currently confined to Camp Ashraf, the MEK’s main compound north of Baghdad, where they remain under the Geneva Convention’s "protected person" status and Coalition control. As a condition of the cease-fire agreement, the group relinquished its weapons, including tanks, armored vehicles, and heavy artillery. A significant number of MEK personnel have "defected" from the Ashraf group, and several dozen of them have been voluntarily repatriated to Iran.

        •  what does voluntary repatriation mean? (0+ / 0-)

          Could this be a cover for special ops incursions?

          Helping to bring justice back to the White House, one indictment at a time.

          by HoundDog on Thu Apr 13, 2006 at 02:35:17 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  They killed Americans according to your .mil link (0+ / 0-)

          The group’s worldwide campaign against the Iranian Government stresses propaganda and occasionally uses terrorism. During the 1970s, the MEK killed US military personnel and US civilians working on defense projects in Tehran and supported the takeover in 1979 of the US Embassy in Tehran.

          Is this the allies we want now!!!!

          Dailykos.com; an oasis of truth. -1.75 -7.23

          by Shockwave on Thu Apr 13, 2006 at 02:57:42 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  The MeK (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        parrothead, HoundDog

        The MeK started off as a Marxist revolutionary force about 40 years ago and have ended up a strange cult with little popular support within Iran because of their helping Saddam during the Iran-Iraq war. The MeK did become part of Saddam's police, carrying out attacks on the Kurds in the north in 1991. While they weren't technically part of Saddam's police forces, they did help Saddam in exchange for cash occasionally.

        Ironically enough, Bush cited the MeK as one of the dangerous terrorist groups that Iraq supported in one of his pre-war propaganda speeches.

        More on the MeK here, here, and here.

        'You can't begin to imagine how effective the Big Lie is.' N. Mailer 'TNatD'

        by jorndorff on Thu Apr 13, 2006 at 12:33:29 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Blowback (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      HoundDog, cobalt blue

      Haven't these dumbfucks learned a goddamn thing from bankrolling Osama bin Laden's mujahideen in Afghanistan in the 1980's?

      I say these dumbfucks specifically, because they are the same fucking people that ran the show, starting with the politically timed release of the hostages from Iran in 1981, to the the shit they pulled at the beginning of Gulf War Part I.

      The same people the CIA trained and financed during the Ronny Raygun administration came back to bite us in the ass, starting in the 1990's.  They call this "blowback".  Now we are playing the same Byzantine power games that got us into trouble in the first place; not only is our very presence in Iraq creating more terrorists, but the process is being helped along by the sheer cravenness and willful blindness of the cretins calling the shots at the Pentagon and the CIA.

      Idiots.

    •  I've been waiting for confirmation of this... (0+ / 0-)

      for over a year now. I first heard of MEK and US involvement with this terrorist (they're not terrorists, they're Freedom Fighters when they're ours!) group back in 1999 or 2000, from the almanac "Dangerous Places," and it seemed the natural and logical progression, as things went to hell in a handbasket,given that we'd sponsored Allawi's group to do the same thing in Iraq. And the rumours of black ops and bombplantings in Iran around the time of their elections had me going "MEK, sure as shooting."

      So now we know.

      "Don't be a janitor on the Death Star!" - Grey Lady Bast (change @ for AT to email)

      by bellatrys on Thu Apr 13, 2006 at 01:17:22 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  What good would it do? (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      HoundDog, cobalt blue

      If anyone still doubts the value and urgency of calling for Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld's resignation immediately, please read this article.  We must get a sane, rational leader of the Department of Defense before Rumsfeld is allowed to add another whole dimension of chaos to this region.

      Okay, so Rumsfeld steps down.  Then what?  Who would replace him?  Somebody Bush nominates and the Republican Congress approves.  So why should we expect that nominee to be better?    If the Dems fight it, then Bush will just do a recess appointment which would allow whomever it is to sit in power until the end of 2007 if I understand how that works.  

      What people seem to be failing to understand is that out system if fundamentally broken right now.  We have a president who believes in the unitary power of the executive and a rubber stamp congress that won't stop him.  Until that equation changes, none of that matters.  

      --- If trickle down economics worked, Marie Antoinette wouldn't have lost her head

      by sterno on Thu Apr 13, 2006 at 02:20:34 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  While, I agree with your assertion that changing (0+ / 0-)

        people in a broken system will not make as much difference as we need to fix this, there would be some value in a Rumsfeld resignations.

        1. Unleashing intimidated Generals that Rumsfeld has pinned down to the floor by the throught.  Any new civilian secretary could require years before he knows them by name well enough to achieve Rumsfeld level of intimidation and suppression.
        1. Symbollic chastening of the Bush-Cheney-Rumsfeld-Neocon delusional fantasy.
        1. Smbollic fresh start possible breaking or slowing downward spiral.
        1. Giving Armed Services commanders the hope that they may be more respected.
        1. Adding credibility to the Bush accountible, censure, and impeachment forces.

        Helping to bring justice back to the White House, one indictment at a time.

        by HoundDog on Thu Apr 13, 2006 at 02:43:55 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  MEK (0+ / 0-)
      I knew I dug up some info on them in a dKos diary a few years ago:

      Tue Jul 27, 2004: Meanwhile, in Iraq..

      This story was all over the BBC Radio last night but I can't seem to find much coverage in the US media.  In Iraq, over 3,000 members of an Iranian opposition group - designated as a terrorist organization by the State Department - have been granted protection under the Geneva Convention.  This group, based in Iraq, had been supported by Saddam Hussein, but apparently has been given a dispensation by the US since it has (only) been committing acts of terrorism against Iran.

      There's a number of articles in the diary that follows, but please note the New York Times piece at the end, in which a "senior American official" declares, "A member of a terrorist organization is not necessarily a terrorist."

  •  Excellent Post Lolligolli. You're on fire this (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    irate

    week.  Keep up the good work!  :-)

    Helping to bring justice back to the White House, one indictment at a time.

    by HoundDog on Thu Apr 13, 2006 at 11:05:16 AM PDT

  •  I agree that Rumsfeld should resign! (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    GN1927, HoundDog, Lolligolli, Torquemadog

      as should Cheney and others. However, it will not matter.
       The shit flows from the top. Bush is suppodes to be the boss.
       All the problems, lying, corruptive ineptitude, brainless interference in the worlds governments, outsourcind of Rove's 3D (deceitful, deceptive, divisive) politics, is because of this periof.
       It's funny! You will laugh, I did. My nurse told me to go home and google the word "Failure" and I would like what comed up. I did of course. you know the first thing that came up. BUSH!

    James M Joiner www.anaveragepatriot.com or http://anaverageamericanpatriot.blogspot.com

    by jmsjoin on Thu Apr 13, 2006 at 11:07:30 AM PDT

    •  Me Too! Rumsfeld must go. Yes, jmsjoin, Bush (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      jmsjoin, HoundDog, Lolligolli

      will still be in charge, however, it will put a slight pause in some of the craziest of the Bush-Cheney-Rumsfeld-Neocon cabal's craziest plans.

      My understanding is that Rumsfeld and Cheney has intimidated most of the top Generals into submission and silence.

      Which is why we are seeing this recent growing chorus of four retired generals in a month calling for Rumsfeld to resing.  

      This list is quite long if you include politicians and others.  

      Symbollically, Rumsfeld's replacement would take his hand from around the next of the generals whom could jump up and launch at least a brief counter rally of common sense and intelligent military planning which does take into account likely objective considerations of consequences in the initial plans.  

      Good work Lolligolli.  Keep up the good work.

      No one expects the Spanish Inquisition!

      by Torquemadog on Thu Apr 13, 2006 at 11:12:28 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  'The U.S. does not negotiate with terrorists'? (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    GN1927, HoundDog, Lolligolli

    So, another day, another lie.

    •  This is one of the lessons the British learned in (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      highfive, HoundDog

      Northern Ireland.  A lot of their own actions were legitimizing the "IRA".

      The CNN program I saw contrasted the successful British approach with the IRA in Northern Ireland with the disasterous Israeli policies in Palestine.

      Where the very things they are doing to reduce terrorism cause more of it.

      Like fire 2000 pound missles into civilian apartment buildings to take a single suspected terrorist leaders.

      But killing 20 innocent children, and created 20 families of life long "terrorist" dedicated to justice.

      At some point when the local population sees the "opposition group" as freedom fighters rather than terrorist the "legitimate police actions" of the government is perceived to be "police state oppression.'

      And the only way then for the government in power is to escalate to Stalinist proportions.

      Experts on this CNN program lamented the fact that the American forces in Iraq had decided to model our approach after the Israeli model insight of the British in Northern Ireland.

      So we got the predicted results.

      I had been hoping we would collectively have an opportunity to review and learn from out mistakes in Iraq before launching another poorly convieved of war in Iran.

      Most analysis I've read suggests we have 3-5 years before Iran will have nuclear weapons.

      It's seems like the only group in a real rush is the Bush Administration

  •  Iran War a done deal (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    GN1927, Lolligolli

    I remember certain basketball games when the other team would be kicking our asses...and it would be late in the 2nd half and it was so tough to keep trying to play hard and stay positive.

    Our team can not give up. It seems like nothing makes a difference as we head towards the cliff of eternal war and fascism. But we can not give up. Call your Reps, call your Senator. Write a letter to the local paper, email all your loved ones and impress upon them the importance of doing the same.

    Do we have a chance to stop this madness? How much time left on the clock?

    Every war when it comes, or before it comes, is represented not as a war but as an act of self-defense against a homicidal maniac.

  •  Destabilising (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    GN1927, mjd in florida, Torquemadog

    the Middle East has its benefits for certain vested interests otherwise they wouldn't bother. It is easy to see why Iran is in such a defensive mode at the moment.

    I don't care for the fundies in Iran but I really don't see them attacking the US anytime soon.  They are certainly aware that small nukes are US policy and when they see what has happened in Iraq I think I would be thinking defense too.

  •  control of oil or love of war? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Torquemadog

    Thanks for the great post.

    I think CheneyCo is after control of oil, so Iran will be the last war for a while.

    If they just love war, they'll go after N. Korea.

    •  I think you're right creekkobear, but the (0+ / 0-)

      dumbfounding aspect of this is that if we really wanted to control oil and gas, for vastly less than the $1 Trillion we are schduled to spend on Iraq, we could develop pipelines and tankers from Alaska and Northen Canada where there are vast untapped reserves of natural gas.

      The famous trans-Canadian gas pipeline is being held hostage by Exxon for $20 Billion Dollars.

      Plus Canada has vast deposits of stranded, unconventional, challanged, and small pocket gas which could be brought online for vastly less tax incentive expense than this.

      And also may have the largest deposite of heavy oil and shell oil anywhere.  Liquification is possible again for less money.

      Not even to speak of Venezuala, Mexico, Nigeria, and other non-middle eastern sources.

      If we taxed imports from Iraq, Iran, and other extremely volitile Middleeastern countries to reflect the hidden external "national security" costs just starting at $1 trillion dollars amortized over 20 years we would need no other dicussion of how to stimulated sustainable alternatives such as wind, tidal, solar, fuel cells, fluidized coal beds etc.  

      The like of a competent high level energy - national security perspective and strategy by this administration is stupid and criminal.

      If instead of having Dick Cheney invite Exxon in to a secret meeting to write our national energy policy we had any representation from acedemic energy scholars and public interest groups we would not have to feel compelled to go to such rediculously stupid extremes as this.

      Will we ever learn?

      No one expects the Spanish Inquisition!

      by Torquemadog on Thu Apr 13, 2006 at 11:25:14 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  This is Reagan's fault (4+ / 0-)

        Carter had his "moral equivalent of war" on energy.  He set-up the solar energy research centers (I was part of one of them).  He had credits for solar energy systems.

        Sure, much of it was not successful, but we learned a lot, and were poised to do much better.

        Then Reagan came in, declared "war on solar energy," forced the price of oil to drop by 50% or so.  Now, 26 years later, the world has a much worse problem.  

        I think Reagan's decision to stop our efforts to become energy independent was the worst decision by a US President in many many decades.

        •  Absolutely!!!!! n/t (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Lolligolli
          •  We need to recreate an intense national plan to (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            inclusiveheart, cobalt blue

            pursue renewable, sustainable, and environmentaly friendly forms of energy production.

            And conserve.

            •  And do things like the people I temped for (0+ / 0-)

              here in DC just before Reagan shut down which is research materials that can be installed in buildings and trailers that will improve insulation.

              These people were studying ways to better insulate traiers which are predominantly used in warmer and cooler climates - in Arizona without air conditioning in a trailer people would die - but if you built a better trailer - you wouldn't need to use as much energy.  

              This program was created by Carter and it made a hell of a lot of sense.  It was even beneficial to the power companies who ended up with fewer customers defaulting on huge power bills.

      •  Think what that trillion dollars could (0+ / 0-)

        do in energy research and tax rebates for home improvements that would save energy or utilize solar/wind power in controlling gas and oil.  

        Making the substances redundant would do more to solve our problems than anything.

      •  The trillion dollars (0+ / 0-)

        is the American taxpayer's money, not theirs.

    •  All Of This Is Over Oil Pricing In Euros.... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      retLT, Lolligolli

      Instead of dollars.  Iran announced that they no longer would price their oil in Dollars a few months back.  If you look back, Iraq did the exact same thing a few months before the invasion.  Here we are again.  It's all about the money, and maintaining dollar hemogeny.  

      •  As soon as the world shift out of dollars as the (0+ / 0-)

        reserve currency, the American party is over.  And our dollar is likely to collapse.  

        •  And the day that Pigs fly (0+ / 0-)

          we will all have to wear very heavy rain coats.

          The problem is always the lack of a real alternative. The reason the US can run such HUGE deficits is that the rest of the world is clamouring to work here, invest here and do business here. The dollar is not going away as the world reserve currency any time soon

          •  You Sure About That? (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            RichM, parrothead

            Have you been paying attention, Ms. Daisy?

            CNN:

            NEW YORK (CNN/Money) - News that a number of central banks indicated they would diversify their reserves out of Treasuries and into other investments such as the euro sent the dollar tumbling Tuesday, and pressured bonds as well.

            Forbes:

            TIANJIN, China, (AFX) - Japan hopes to rebalance its foreign exchange reserves with less US dollars when the dollar regains enough strength to withstand such a reform, a Japanese finance official said at a meeting of Asian and European finance ministers here.

            BBC:

            China may reduce the amount of US bonds it holds as part of its foreign exchange reserves, an influential official has reportedly said.

            No problem, right?

            •  The Asians are great traders (0+ / 0-)

              if they were really going to sell the dollar, the last thing in the world they would be doing is announcing it before hand.

              Watch what they do, not what they say.

              The Chinese Central Bank has substantially increased their holdings of dollars in the past year. They have to if they want to maintain their currency peg against the dollar.

              The Japanese banks have also been buyers of dollars. When the Japanese government begins privatizing the $3 trillion in the Postal Service System there will be yet another buyer of dollar assets as the managers of those assets diversify globally.

              Sorry, but the dollar is not going away as the reserve currency of the global economy any time soon.

      •  Oh Please (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        kd texan

        How many times does this idea have to be debunked.

        Please see the many excellent diaries done by Jerome de Paris as to why this is just not going to happen.

  •  Special Agents In Iraq Pre-Invasion... (0+ / 0-)

    was later used as justification for going forward with the invasion, regardless as to what the result of the weapon inspections were.

    •  The infamous Rock Stars (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      HL Mungo

      The people who came with all kinds of information for the advance CIA team in Iraq because they were handing out cell phones and hundred dollar bills like candy. We seem to be stuck in the same modus operandi in which we attract the most sordid types of opportunists and take their word as gospel. We exploit anyone with a grudge and atttempt to paint them as noble freedom fighters as long as they are doing our dirty work.

  •  Did Pakistan Move?? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    GN1927, Torquemadog

    One of the operational assets being used by the Defense Department is a right-wing terrorist organization known as Mujahedeen-e Khalq (MEK), which is being "run" in two southern regional areas of Iran, both bordering Pakistan.

    I'm pretty sure that NO "southern" parts of Iran border Pakistan...

    If we had an effective Congress we would get a Law specifically forbidding any funds being expended for ANY military purpose related to Iran without specific Congressional authorization.

    •  Map (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      bronte17

      It shows Afghanistan due east of Iran, Pakistan just south of that, along the southeast border of Iran.
      http://www.un.org/...

      Practice absurdus interruptus - Support ePluribus Media.

      by Catte Nappe on Thu Apr 13, 2006 at 11:27:15 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Baluchistan is a region (0+ / 0-)

      bordering Iran, Afghanistan and Pakistan.  I went to school with the Baluchi warlords son and know a fair amount about the region.  The Baluchi's have been fighting for an independent state since the end of WW2.  They have frequently sought the assistance of the US, but the US has been reluctant.  When the Soviets were being kicked out they thought they had a better chance.  The Mujahedeen was operating openly in the area, including Bin Laden, and the Baluchi's thought they had a really good chance as the US was using their soil to smuggle arms.

      My friend returned to Baluchistan one summer after the US had rejected their latest plea for assistance (Reagan administration).  When he came back he had significantly changed.  He showed me pictures of his trip, mostly pictures of young men holding AK-47's with bandoliers across their chests or groups of young men riding around in the back of pick-up trucks waiving weapons.  I suspect he must have also run into Bin Laden or Bin Laden's group during the trip as his  tone had become decidedly anti american and borderline Islamic fundamentalist, though he still liked me.

      That said I find it strange that pro-US forces would be operating so openly in Baluchistan, though I do suspect it is in the Iranian section of Baluchistan, the least tolerant of fundamentalist Islam.  Several Al-Qaeda militants have been captured in the Afghanistan and Pakistanian sections of Baluchistan and even sightings of Bin Laden have been claimed in this area, as these areas are decidedly tolerant of Bin Laden.  Ultimately this may portend a strange alliance as it is known that there is friction between Bin Laden and Iran, Bin Laden may actually be secretly stirring the pot.

  •  oh, this is just swell (4+ / 0-)

    but utterly unsurprising.

    I can't believe they're trying this bullshit.  I just can't believe it.

    Isn't there the slightest hint of shame, or of learning from one's mistakes with these assholes?

    •  No Shame, no learning, no conscience! (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      sexton, Lolligolli

      Your are right on theriesnospoon.  A whole administration of sociopaths.  Unprecidented.

      No one expects the Spanish Inquisition!

      by Torquemadog on Thu Apr 13, 2006 at 11:27:38 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Unless, you count us here and at other (0+ / 0-)

        progressive blogs.  Our job is to awaken our collective national awareness.

        I don't know how to do this but it is necessary.

        Do we have any political activitist types here?  You know those folks who know how to launch letter writing campaigns, marches, and catalize folks to political action?  

  •  Sooooooo..... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Torquemadog

    Does this mean that we need to preemptively attack...ourselves for supporting terrorism???

    The hypocrisy is just stunning.

    •  Excellent point LITBMueller. By virtue of the (0+ / 0-)

      new international precident of nations having a right to "preemptively strike" against future agreesives, both Iran and North Korea could us the Bush Doctrine to justify nuclear strikes against the US.

      Bush has made an ungodly mess of international law and should be censured and impeached just on the basis of his violations of international law.

      No one expects the Spanish Inquisition!

      by Torquemadog on Thu Apr 13, 2006 at 11:31:20 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  This should be a big issue (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Catte Nappe, Lolligolli, Torquemadog

      It should have been a big issue in 2004, and it should be a big issue now.  Claiming to be fighting terrorism by supporting terrorists is the kind of pure hypocrisy that maybe we have come to expect of the Bush Administration, but that the less-clued-in might still find shocking.
      And the MeKh has a long, ugly, and brutal history, and they do not believe in democracy at all.  A MeKh-controlled Iran would be far, far worse than the IRI.

  •  Listening to Americans bathetically (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Torquemadog

    wonder why "'they' hate us" makes me violently ill.

    Is ignorance a moral excuse? Do these people REALIZE what has been done in their name for 60 years now? Do they think that ruling the world has been accomplished benignly?

    •  I pressume by 'these people' you mean Americans? (0+ / 0-)

      Some of do, that why we jumping up and down here at dkos trying to wake up our fellow Americans before we do even more stupid things.

      I have studied world and American history extensively and I am quite aware of our history.

      I have have no illusions that our global power has been gained or used benignly.

      But some of are trying to do better Blicero.

      In the meantime, please let me apologize on behalf of all of us.  Most American's are just not very aware of our role in the world.

      And are hypnotized by a self-congratulaltory press, that is still revcovering from but still too comfortable in the role of tools of Pentagon and White House Proganda that arose during WWI and WWII and the cold war.

      No one expects the Spanish Inquisition!

      by Torquemadog on Thu Apr 13, 2006 at 11:36:58 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Negroponte and Abrams (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    bronte17, jorndorff

    have experience in Latin America.Practice makes perfect.

  •  This means the US must attack the US (4+ / 0-)

    as state supporters of terrorism.

    Maybe we could nuke us.

  •  By becoming a state sponsor of terrorism... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Lolligolli

    ...is the US now a member of the Axis of Evil? Do we need to invade ourselves?

    Thwarting the forces of conservatism since 1978. -7.63, -5.64

    by wiscmass on Thu Apr 13, 2006 at 11:39:37 AM PDT

  •  Remember Saddam Hussein (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Catte Nappe

    Why did the US initially support Saddam? Think back to that wonderful photo of Rumsfeld and Hussein together. We supported a murderous tyrant exactly because he was willing to attack Iran.

    So once again we are "turning to a dangerous and unruly cast of characters" in Iraq because this helps us with Iran. I imagine we will end up owing support to these unrulies when they want to "help govern" Iraq. This in turn will sour after awhile. And we will need to invade Iraq again. and again. and again.

    The Place of Dead Roads
    "The City of Louisiana has dodged the bullet with Hurricane Corrina."

    by Dr Benway on Thu Apr 13, 2006 at 11:41:36 AM PDT

  •  Whoa (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Lolligolli

    Great find.  This is huge, huge news indeed, and yet another example of the Bush Administration to act as if they condemn all terrorism, while openly encouraging certain kinds behind our backs.

    •  Thanks Lets Be Frank. It took me quite a while (0+ / 0-)

      to find it.  I was worried for a moment that I was going to have to do a diary today on Condi Rice cancelling the State Departments subscriptions to Playboy and Hustler.  It looked like a slow news day.   LOL

  •  Lord, call me home now (0+ / 0-)

    I really can't bear to deal with the cruelty and mindless, inhuman illogic and hypocrisy of your grand design, at least as executed by your current favoured people.

    -8.38, -4.97 "...there is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so." Hamlet, Act II, Scene ii.

    by thingamabob on Thu Apr 13, 2006 at 11:45:19 AM PDT

  •  It worked out so well for us.,,, (0+ / 0-)

    to back the muhjadeen and Al-Queda in Afghanistan, when they were fighting the Soviets, didn't it?

    "I am the pitbull on the pantleg of opportunity." G W Bush

    by irate on Thu Apr 13, 2006 at 11:53:46 AM PDT

  •  The MEK (6+ / 0-)

    The Mujahedeen-e-Khalq has been around for a long time.  I don't know as I would term them "right wing" and they are definitely not an Iraqi group.  They are Iranian and were killed in droves by the Khomeini regime after the Revolution.  Maryam & Massoud Rajavi, the leaders of the group, escaped and ended up in Iraq and set up a base there with the approval of Saddam Hussein.  The MEK lost a lot of credibility in Iran during the Gulf War for "siding" with Iraq, though they had had a very popular following inside of Iran both pre- and post-revolution.  Their ideology as such is really a cult-of-personality these days, but is an odd mixture of Marxism and radical Islam.  They were allied in the struggle against the Shah with the Khomeini people and the Communists.  http://news.bbc.co.uk/....  

    They have recently sought to use some members of Congress to advance their cause.  http://releases.usnewswire.com/...  

  •  We ARE The TERRORISTS (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Hear Our Voices

    Ladies and Gentlemen, I can see this really not going over so well. 30% disapproval, try 20%...

    We have now officially sanctioned and trained terrorists... Iraqi no less, and incorporated them into our official planning.

    The US is a Rogue State, and I just hope when we get taken down, I can protect myself and my assets from destruction that will be due when Kharma bitchslaps our people for allowing these crimes...

    •  Um... (0+ / 0-)

      You are assuming that this gets any airplay over missing white girls or the latest episode of 'Lost'.  I make no such assumption.  Why are The Criminal's numbers falling?  Two words: gas prices.

      "[A] 'Sharecropper's Society' [is] precisely where our trade policies, supported by Republicans and Democrats alike, are taking us." - Warren Buffet

      by RichM on Thu Apr 13, 2006 at 02:31:49 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Gen McInnerny laid the Iran attack plan out (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    CarolynC967, Lolligolli, navygrad

    as plain as day last night on the O'Reilly Factor

    1. Impact Segment

    The press & military action against Iran
    Guest: Fox News military analyst Lt. Gen. Thomas McInerney

    As we told you last night it would be insane for the Bush administration not to be looking at military options when it comes to Iran. As you know, that country is defying the world and trying to get nuclear weapons. But some in the American press are all upset by the possibility that military action might happen against Iran.

    The Factor asked Fox news military analyst Lieutenant General Thomas McInerney, "What kind of a country would not even consider options, at the planning stage, against an adversary like Iran? That would be totally irresponsible." The general responded, "We expect our military to be making plans for a military option. There will be no diplomacy without a very strong capable military option."

    The Factor wanted to know if perceived failures in Iraq were complicating any action against Iran, "The argument is that the U.S.A. screwed up Iraq conflict so bad and we are in so deep, that you shouldn't even be considering any other military action." The general said, "First of all, we didn't. It was a brilliant campaign done in 21 days? I can lay out a campaign today that will take Iran down very quickly. We'll do it a different way. But the fact is we have lots of capability. We are not pinned down in Iraq, despite what people think. We are not pinned down there."

    The Factor wanted to know about the planned campaign against Iran and inquired, "Lay out the military campaign as it might come down, if all other options are exhausted." The general said,

    • "It's a powerful air campaign that we will hit within 36 to 48 hours, over 1,500 aim points. And those are primarily nuclear sites for the development. We'll hit this integrated air defense system. We'll take its air force out, its navy out. We'll take his command and control out [Does that include political leadership a la Shock and Awe] ?
    • And then simultaneously, we will have a covert campaign in which we'll help the Iranian people retake their country. Now they have a mixture of people there, Bill, that only 51 percent are Persian. You've got about 24 percent Azerbaijanians, about 10 percent Kurds. That's 85 percent. It is ripe for political discontent and ripe to let the people have their country back. [Covert sowing of internal sectarian strife within Iran seems to be part of the US game planning? bracketed question and emphasis mine]

    The mullahs are not beloved in that country and so with a skillful air campaign to neutralize their command and control and their ability to respond and then putting the effort, as we did in Afghanistan and very similar to what Khomeini did against the shah, let the people have their country back."

    The Factor wanted to know if this strategy included boots on the ground for American troops, "So it would be all air, no infantry and maybe special forces trying to help." The general answered, "Correct."

    •  Good catch procera. Perhaps the real plan is to (0+ / 0-)

      use this MEK group as a cover as a plausible "indigenous" Iranian group that we will have actually seeded with our own special ops forces.

      But Bush could then avoid the public relations sensitivities to the bad press possible if Americans were told American soldiers would be in Iran.

  •  MEK, Nuclear Posture and neocon plans (0+ / 0-)

    The Pentagon has drafted a revised doctrine for the use of nuclear weapons that envisions commanders requesting presidential approval to use them to preempt an attack by a nation or a terrorist group using weapons of mass destruction.

    Reading RAWSTORY's report claiming that the US military is in bed with the terrorist group MEK, in conjunction with Steven D's post on the Nuclear Posture Review quoted above, shows what could be the real neocon plan or at least a backup.  Since the Review envisions the use of nuclear weapons to prevent an attack by "a terrorist group" using WMDs, it is possible that the neocons would use the MEK as a pretext for nuking Iran by claiming they are such a terrorist group with WMDs.  Farfetched?  I don't put anything past these fanatical liars.

  •  Solutions? (0+ / 0-)

    Pro-West Iranian dissidents. How can they, or should they, be reached and encouraged to promote internal reform? Money? Covert ops? I've read that US attempts to engage these dissidents actually hardens the hardliners against the West and further marginalizes any internal attempts at moderation and reform.

    My opinion? If there is one constant in history it involves the guiding merits of self-determination. When it is meddled with by forces outside of the state, it stunts progress and distorts unity. People need to work shit out for themselves, overcoming their tyrants by their own means. At its foundation, true democracy is about self-determination free from all external influence.

    What about diplomatic solutions? Personally, I see nothing wrong with the international community allowing a heavily-inspected nuclear program for energy purposes only. As I understand it, this is legal under the NPT. Obviously, it's weaponry that should be reduced to eventual non-existence.

    But I doubt Israel would allow us to be a part of any such diplomatic agreement. Not to mention Ahmadinejad is nuttier than Bush when it comes to a messianic complex. Bush + Ahmadinejad = peaceful solution a longshot.

    Can we call for a do-over of Nov '04?

    "Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will." -- Frederick Douglass

    by big dave on Thu Apr 13, 2006 at 12:53:10 PM PDT

  •  Correction: flouting (0+ / 0-)

    In "the Pentagon is once again flaunting State Department and National Security Council objections", flaunting should be flouting.  Big difference.

    "... Just so long as I'm the dictator." - GWB, 12/18/00

    by Bob Love on Thu Apr 13, 2006 at 01:10:21 PM PDT

  •  Add tags (0+ / 0-)

    Might be nice to add a tag for Larisa and for Raw Story

  •  Khuzistan (0+ / 0-)
    Great diary, Lolligolli. I just skimmed it (no time just now).

    I found an article the other day after seeing another article that talked about Khuzistan. Domestic Threats to Iranian Stability: Khuzistan and Baluchistan by Michael Rubin. The article is from the American Enterprise Institute (of all people), from last november.

    The article has some history of the tension in the area. It mentions that Saddam Hussein tried to interfere and play up the ethnic tensions, and the result was that he unified Iran against him. It also mentions the MEK.

    The article concludes :

    Neither Washington nor any other Western democracy should attempt to play the separatist card in Iran. To do so would not only backfire, but would trade ephemeral short-term gain for long-term strategic harm.
    I don't know anything about this stuff, so I can't judge the article. I'd love to hear others' comments on it. This was produced by the AEI, but it seems to conclude interfering would be a bad idea. What's going on?

    I also just found a year-old dkos diary about Rubin Michael Rubin's (AEI) Hypocrisy (on Iraq / Iran). Haven't read it yet. I don't know who Rubin is or what agenda (if any) he has, what role he has in all this. It's all curious, though.

    I'm not sure if any of this is useful. There might be something in all of that, might not. Might be worthwhile for someone who knows more about this stuff to look into it.

    •  Michael Rubin (0+ / 0-)
      From an 11/2004 article in The American Prospect. I got the link from the diary I cited in the last comment.

      The classified document that Franklin allegedly passed to AIPAC concerned a controversial proposal by Pentagon hard-liners to destabilize Iran. The latest iteration of the national-security presidential directive was drafted by a Pentagon civilian and avid neocon, Michael Rubin, who hoped it would be adopted as official policy by the Bush administration. But in mid-June, Bush's national-security advisers canceled consideration of the draft, partly in response to resistance from some at the State Department and the National Security Council, according to a recent memo written by Rubin and obtained by The American Prospect. No doubt also contributing to the administration's decision was the swelling insurgency and chaos of postwar Iraq.

      Rubin, in his early 30s, is a relative newcomer to the neoconservative circles in which he is playing an increasingly prominent role. Once the Iraq and Iran desk officer in the Pentagon's Office of Special Plans and later a Coalition Provisional Authority adviser in Iraq, these days the Yale-educated Ph.D. hangs his hat at the American Enterprise Institute (AEI) and serves as editor for controversial Middle East scholar Daniel Pipes' magazine, The Middle East Quarterly.

      This is all old information now, from 11/04. Again, I haven't read the whole article. There might be nothing there, but it might be worth looking into. (Do I keep saying that? I'm really tired. I want answers, and don't know what's going on or what I or anyone can do about it. I just keep hoping that there will be a clue to what the administration is really doing--they certainly aren't telling us.)
  •  Whacky story about MEK (0+ / 0-)

    Back before the war and during the early parts of the invasion, someone had noted that MEK received backing from the Pentagon and SCIRI received backing from the State Department (that could have been flipped around, but the article suggests it was the Pentagon who backed MEK).

    There was some speculation early on that MEK might wind up in a fight with SCIRI's Badr Corp, thus it would be the first known time a Pentagon army might fight a State Department army on the battlefield. That is how badly things were fucked up.

    Why did the President choose to break the law?

    by Olds88 on Thu Apr 13, 2006 at 02:30:40 PM PDT

    •  MEK doesn't have shit... (0+ / 0-)

      They have only about 3000 people in Iraq. And most of their heavy equipment got confescated. As known Saddam henchment, they will get their asses kicked the minute US looks the other way. MEK vs. Badr is no contest.

      (-9.13, -8.10) Political violence is a perfectly legitimate answer to the persecution handed down by dignitaries of the state. - Riven Turnbull

      by Florida Democrat on Thu Apr 13, 2006 at 03:14:05 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  MEK has long been on State Dept. terrorist list (0+ / 0-)

    Some more info on the MEK

    Description
    The MEK philosophy mixes Marxism and Islam. Formed in the 1960s, the organization was expelled from Iran after the Islamic Revolution in 1979, and its primary support came from the former Iraqi regime of Saddam Hussein starting in the late 1980s. The MEK conducted anti-West-ern attacks prior to the Islamic Revolution. Since then, it has conducted terrorist attacks against the interests of the clerical regime in Iran and abroad. The MEK advocates the overthrow of the Iranian regime and its replacement with the group’s own leadership.

    Activities
    The group’s worldwide campaign against the Iranian Government stresses propaganda and occasionally uses terrorism. During the 1970s, the MEK killed US military personnel and US civilians working on defense projects in Tehran and supported the takeover in 1979 of the US Embassy in Tehran. In 1981, the MEK detonated bombs in the head office of the Islamic Republic Party and the Premier’s office, killing some 70 high-ranking Iranian officials, including Chief Justice Ayatollah Mohammad Beheshti, President Mohammad-Ali Rajaei, and Premier Mohammad-Javad Bahonar. Near the end of the 19801988 war with Iran, Baghdad armed the MEK with military equipment and sent it into action against Iranian forces. In 1991, the MEK assisted the Government of Iraq in suppressing the Shia and Kurdish uprisings in southern Iraq and the Kurdish uprisings in the north. In April 1992, the MEK conducted near-simultaneous attacks on Iranian embassies and installations in 13 countries, demonstrating the group’s ability to mount large-scale operations overseas. In April 1999, the MEK targeted key military officers and assassinated the deputy chief of the Iranian Armed Forces General Staff. In April 2000, the MEK attempted to assassinate the commander of the Nasr Headquarters, Tehran’s interagency board responsible for coordinating policies on Iraq. The normal pace of anti-Iranian operations increased during "Operation Great Bahman" in February 2000, when the group launched a dozen attacks against Iran. One of those attacks included a mortar attack against the leadership complex in Tehran that housed the offices of the Supreme Leader and the President. In 2000 and 2001, the MEK was involved regularly in mortar attacks and hit-and-run raids on Iranian military and law enforcement units and Government buildings near the Iran-Iraq border, although MEK terrorism in Iran declined toward the end of 2001. After Coalition aircraft bombed MEK bases at the outset of Operation Iraqi Freedom, the MEK leadership ordered its members not to resist Coalition forces, and a formal cease-fire arrangement was reached in May 2003.

    "When watchdogs, bird dogs, and bull dogs morph into lap dogs, lazy dogs, or yellow dogs, the nation is in trouble." - Ted Stannard

    by jrooth on Thu Apr 13, 2006 at 02:37:25 PM PDT

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