Thursday, May 1, 2008

Is the US getting ready to attack Iran?

Perusing through the news stories of the last couple of days, leaves me with no choice but to wonder aloud, is the US readying for an attack on Iran?

We read the Pentagon is stating repeatedly, there is no new war planning for an attack on Iran, note I bolded the word new. As Pentagon spokesman Geoff Morrell said on Wednesday "I just want to be abundantly clear that there are no new directives, there are no new plans in the works, there is no new effort to prepare for a possible war with Iran,"

Ok, if there are no new directives, efforts or plans how about older ones?

Well, Mr Morrell has this to say; Morrell acknowledged that the Pentagon has contingency plans and "we update them for every possibility."

"But to characterize what is going on now as a new war planning effort against Iran would be wrong," he said.

"There is nothing going on with regards to Iran beyond what we would normally do to update our plans for contingencies with almost any country that poses a threat," he said.

Well that clears it up! There are no new plans because there are always updated plans?
Of course, one would think that up to date plans would be newer then previous plans, and would indeed be new plans? Interesting play on words, perhaps?

Then there is this; Secretary of Defence Robert Gates says, the deployment of a second aircraft carrier group to the Gulf could serve as a "reminder" to Iran. A "reminder" of American resolve to defend its interests in the region. But, Robert Gates denies the arrival of a new carrier represented an escalation. So it's not an escalation it's a "reminder" and a 'gentle' one at that.

Where have I seen this type of news reporting before? That seems to contradict on a day to day basis, with inevitable denial and/or clarifications.

Flashback Iraq 2003!
The same type of military build-up was reported and the same types of denials were issued by the US government. If one recalls, President Bush gave Saddam Hussein a final 48 hour window of opportunity, to avoid an attack on Iraq, by leaving the country. It made for great theatre, very dramatic, for the Western audience, but the reality of course was that the US and Britian had long intended to attack Iraq and there was no going back, not a chance in hell of attack being avoided. That attack had been planned long before the official start date.

So while the build-up to the attack on Iraq, was being carried out under our noses, with all the drama of weapons inspections , failed UN resolutions and denials from both the British and US governments, the plans for attack, long in place, were being carried out to fruition.

There it is! The familiarity, the similarity, the pause for thought.

But then even one more news item caught my eye, at the bottom of one of the news stories was this

Separately, it emerged on Wednesday that Iran had shifted all its revenues from oil sales to euros and yen, becoming the first country in the world not to accept dollars for hydrocarbon sales
Seperatley this emerged ? As if it has nothing to with a potential attack on Iran? It isn't even an accurate statement, as there was a country that was already the "first ever country" to shift its' oil sales from the greenback to Euros'. That country was Iraq! Iraq had indeed been selling it's oil in Euros' prior to the attack. But, of course the occupying US transitional government changed that as reported in the Financial Times June 5th/2003
"The tender, for which bids are due by June 10, switches the transaction back to dollars -- the international currency of oil sales - despite the greenback's recent fall in value. Saddam Hussein in 2000 insisted Iraq's oil be sold for euros, a political move, but one that improved Iraq's recent earnings thanks to the rise in the value of the euro against the dollar."

"we have all been here before"

Deja Vu: by Crosby, Stills & Nash

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