Peoples Geography — Reclaiming space

Creating people's geographies

The Anglo-American Game of Chess With Iran; Israeli connection

Press Picks

* Report: U.S. Sponsoring Kurdish Guerilla Attacks Inside Iran, Democracy Now 27 March 2007 (see also William Lowther, US funds terror groups to sow chaos in Iran, 25 Feb 2007 and Patrick Cockburn, The Hostage Game: How American Raids and Arrests Set the Stage for Iran’s Capture of British Marines, 27 March 2007):

Independent journalist Reese Erlich reports that Iranian Kurdish guerillas are based among their Kurdish bretheren in northern Iraq and that “Kurdish and American sources say the United States has been supporting guerilla raids against Iran, channeling the money through organizations in Iraqi Kurdistan.”

REESE ERLICH: Israel is backing various Kurdish groups. Both among the Iraqi Kurds as well as the PJAK among the Iranian Kurds. For Israel that have a long history of supporting non-Arab countries in an effort to divide the Arab world so they supported the Shah of Iran, Hali Salasi in Ethiopia. Turkey, they were allied in Turkey for many years and they see trying to use the Kurds in the same way. You have Israeli security officials training the guards at the Arabial Airport in northern Iraq. You have training of special anti-terrorism squads. I think they’re working with PJAK although this is all denied by PJAK and the Israelis are also playing a very dangerous game because they are intervening in the affairs of Iraq and causing a great deal of trouble both for Iran and now they’re outs with Turkey who was their long-time ally.

So the Israelis have significantly stepped up their activities in northern Iraq. I think if ultimately the Iraq war goes very badly for the United States, as all indications are that it will, eventually Iraq will split into three different countries including an independent Kurdistan on the north and the Israelis hope to benefit from that by having a beachhead against the Sunni and the Shiia and Arab parts of Iraq and as well as the other neighboring Arab countries. That’s a long time goal of the Israelis.

* Craig Murray (fmr British Ambassador to Uzbekistan), Fake Maritime Boundaries (28 March 2007):

The British Government has published a map showing the coordinates of the incident, well within an Iran/Iraq maritime border. But there are two colossal problems. … The Iran/Iraq maritime boundary shown on the British government map does not exist. It has been drawn up by the British Government. Only Iraq and Iran can agree their bilateral boundary, and they never have done this in the Gulf, only inside the Shatt because there it is the land border too. This published boundary is a fake with no legal force.None of which changes the fact that the Iranians, having made their point, should have handed back the captives immediately. I pray they do so before this thing spirals out of control. But by producing a fake map of the Iran/Iraq boundary, notably unfavourable to Iran, we can only harden the Iranian position.

* Pepe Escobar, British pawns in an Iranian game, Asia Times (28 March 2007)

… This correspondent has been to the Shatt-al-Arab. It’s a busy and tricky waterway, to say the least. Iraqi fishing boats share the waters with Iranian patrol boats. From the Iraqi shore one can see the Iranian shore, flags aflutter. These remain extremely disputed waters. In 1975, a treaty was signed in Algiers between the shah of Iran and Saddam Hussein. The center of the river was supposed to be the border. Then Saddam invaded Iran in 1980. After the Iran-Iraq War that this sparked ended in 1988, and even after both Gulf wars, things remain perilously inconclusive: a new treaty still has not been signed.

The British are adamant that the sailors were in Iraqi waters checking for cars, not weapons, being smuggled. It’s almost laughable that the Royal Navy should be reduced to finding dangerous Toyotas in the Persian Gulf. Some reports from Tehran claim the British were actually checking Iranian military preparations ahead of a possible confrontation with the US.

Western corporate media overwhelmingly take for granted that the British were in Iraqi or “international” waters (wrong: these are disputed Iran/Iraq waters). Tehran has accused the British of “blatant aggression” and reminded world public opinion “this is not the first time that Britain commits such illegal acts” (which is true). Tehran diplomats later suggested that the British might be charged with espionage (which is actually the case in Khuzestan province in Iran, conducted by US Special Forces).

* Justin Raimondo, The Coming War With Iran : Is it inevitable?, (26 March 2007)

The Lobby is pushing hard on this one, and, politically, the War Party has lined up the leadership of both the Democrats and the Republicans, as Pelosi’s capitulation on the Iran proviso makes all too clear.

* Justin Raimondo, The Real ‘Existential Threat’: War with Iran augurs a global conflict, (30 March)

… There is only one country on earth that benefits in any way from a Western collision with the Persians, and its current rulers haven’t been shy about openly calling for war. The Israelis have stated, loudly and often, that Iranian possession of nuclear technology represents an “existential threat” to the Jewish state, and they’ve threatened to take out Iran’s nuclear facilities if we fail in our duty to do so. They way things are going, however, it looks like they won’t have to …

The Lobby moved quickly to bend Western politicians to its will, including “antiwar” Democrats in the U.S. Congress. Having been given a green light to invade by Speaker Pelosi and her minions, is it any wonder that the War Party is crossing that nonexistent line in the Shatt al Arab – the Rubicon of our imperial ambitions?

If ever we needed that long-rumored but seemingly moribund resolution of Sen. James Webb, which was supposed to be the upper house’s equivalent of the fallen “don’t invade Iran” provision nixed by Pelosi, it is now. Senate bill 759 prohibits the use of funds for military operations against Iran, and yet remains bottled up in the Senate Foreign Relations committee – while the pork-laden emergency supplemental for Iraq, which is so full of loopholes it resembles a big slice of Swiss cheese, sucks up all the oxygen. Isn’t that just like the Democrats: they come out against the Iraq war only when it’s too late – even as they signal the administration to go ahead with the next war.

It’s amazing that the War Party, after delivering a body blow to our military and American interests throughout the world by invading Iraq, can mobilize its forces to make yet another go of it – this time on a much larger scale. That they are doing it without much political opposition, is even more astounding – and that speaks volumes about the corruption and betrayal of our “democratic” system, which is no reflection of the popular will. In a sane world, anyone who so much as suggested the possibility of starting another war in the Middle East would be taken out and horsewhipped. In the Bizarro World universe we seem to have slipped into post-9/11, however, such madness is the norm.

Where are our intellectual, political, and religious leaders? Will no one arise to end our national nightmare and lead us to safety? … The coming war with Iran will not end until the entire region is aflame – with the fire spreading to three continents, and beyond. Is this the price the world is willing to pay to put an end to the “existential threat” to Israel? Or will our rulers pause, before plunging into an abyss, to ask: what about the existential threat to the rest of the world?

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