From The Rock River Times:
Once again, Vice President Dick Cheney is heading the propaganda push just as he did in 2002 in the run-up to Iraq. On the morning of Inauguration Day, 2005, he appeared on MSNBC’s Imus in the Morning program and stated that Iran “has a fairly robust new nuclear program.”
Cheney added that Iran sponsors terrorism and said Iran’s “objective is the destruction of Israel.”
Cheney’s protege and new U.N. ambassador John Bolton has been quoted as saying Iranian “deception” cannot be allowed to continue. “It will be too late. Iran will have nuclear weapons.”
The State Department already considers the Iranian government a leading sponsor of terrorism, thus completing the Iraqi-model causus belli "trifecta": human-rights violations against the people, state-sponsored terrorism links and, as mentioned in the article above, a nuclear arsenal that doesn't exist. Given all the same old excuses, can there be any doubt about which road the Bush Administration is looking at walking down yet again? This dovetails nicely with Bush's recent refusal to even entertain the notion of withdrawing troops from Iraq. After all, it makes little sense to withdraw our military forces now if plans are being laid for military intervention in neighboring Iran.
The plot thickens considerably when one considers the following story from Official Wire:
A number of political observers and activists today sounded ‘a red alert’ after reports surfaced this week Vice President Dick Cheney directly ordered Strategic Command (STRATCOM) to make contingency plans for a nuclear strike against Iran in the aftermath of another ‘9/11 type attack' on America.
Cheney’s orders first surfaced in an article by Philip Geraldi in the Aug 1, 2005, issue of The American Conservative. Geraldi was unavailable for comment, but excerpts of the article went on to say:
"Vice President Cheney's office has specifically told the Pentagon that the military should be prepared for an attack on Iran in the immediate aftermath of "another 9-11." That's "not conditional on Iran actually being involved in the act of terrorism directed against the United States," notes Geraldi’s article.
This terrifies me for several reasons, not the least of which is that, given our miliary's committments in Iraq and Afghanistan, what options are really left in regard to military intervention in Iran? Granted, Iran is not the military power it once was, but then, neither was Iraq. Given this, the nuclear option begins to take on a terrifying new dimension as Cheney and Bolton seemingly lay the groundwork for the third war of the George W. Bush presidency.
The other thing that really gets me about this STRATCOM plan initiation by Cheney is how the plans are contingent upon another large-scale terrorist attack, regardless of whether Iran is involved or not. If it weren't dealing with so deadly serious a topic, this would be almost comically absurd. Three years into a war with a country that had absolutely nothing to do with the attacks of 9/11, and our Vice President is ordering a contingency plan for a repeat of the same mistake.
More from Joe Baker:
The problem is that several federal officials who have access to the National Intelligence Estimate (NIE) recently told The Washington Post that intelligence reports show Iran is a good 10 years away from any nuclear capability.
The NIE states that while there is evidence Iran is doing some secret work on nuclear power, no evidence exists linking that work directly to a nuclear weapons program. Further, U.N. weapons inspectors have found no proof that Iran is operating a nuclear weapons program or that it has a nuclear warhead design.
The similarities to the Bush case for war in Iraq are staggering!
Only this time, the stakes have risen to the deadliest level they can reach. Our world becomes a tremendously more dangerous place the instant the United States perpetrates the 3rd nuclear attack in world (and, sadly, U.S.) history. The Bush Administration has already demonstrated, via Iraq, that it places politics and ideology above the safety of the United States. It's clear today that Iraq has become an open breeding ground for terrorists; the mind shrinks from the eventuality of a Middle East that has suffered a nuclear attack from the United States.
No amount of re-built schools and talk of "spreading freedom and democracy" can bridge the gulf that will be left between the United States and the rest of the world.