Bill Gertz is a right-wing national security reporter for the Rev. Sun Yung Moon's
neo-fascist newspaper, The Washington Times. He's also a spigot from which flows
much classified information illegally leaked by like-minded "patriots"
seeking to advance their hawkish agenda in the military-industrial-congressional
complex. And, frankly speaking, that's the only reason I pay any attention to
So I was hardly surprised when, on September 16, 2005, Gertz reported on the
Bush administration's "computer slide presentation." which was aimed
at persuading whoever would listen that Iran is working feverishly to build
According to Gertz, the report claims: "Iran's nuclear program is well-scaled
for a weapons capability, as a comparison to [Pakistan's] nuclear weapons infrastructure
shows…When one also considers Iran's concealment and deception activities,
it's difficult to escape the conclusion that Iran is pursuing nuclear weapons."
The report also states that "Iran's uranium ore resources are insufficient
for Tehran to produce enough fuel for civilian electrical power generating reactors.
'However, Iran's uranium resources are more than sufficient to support a nuclear
weapons capability.'" [U.S. Report Says Iran Seeks To Acquire Nuclear Weapons,"
Washington Times, 16 September 2005]
Unlike the Washington Post's article on the subject two days earlier, Gertz
predictably failed to mention that the slide show "dismisses ambiguities
in the evidence…and omits alternative explanations under debate among
intelligence analysts." He also failed to mention that several diplomats
"said the slide show reminded them of the flawed presentation on Iraq's
weapons programs made by then-secretary of state Colin L. Powell to the UN Security
Council in February 2003" ["US Deploys Slide Show to Press Case Against
Iran," Washington Post, 14 September 2005]
Moreover, in order to serve as water boy for the Bush administration, Gertz
had to ignore (or discount) the recent report from Britain's prestigious International
Institute for Strategic Studies, which concluded that Iran "was at least
five years away from producing sufficient material for 'a single nuclear weapon,'"
Instead, Gertz obediently and dutifully noted that the Bush administration "is
pressing the IAEA [International Atomic Energy Agency] to refer the issue…
to the United Nations Security Council," which "could then impose
economic sanctions against Iran or possibly a future authorization for the use
of force." [Ibid.] Ah yes, "authorization for the use of force"—the
source of many a neocon and chickenhawk wet dream.
But much more disconcerting than Gertz's piece was one written by Claude Salhani
on 22 September 2005 for the same loony "Moonie" scandal sheet. Salhani
shamelessly reintroduced the tactics, which proved so successful in inflaming
a frightened American public about the threat posed by Iraq. He invoked the
words of an Iranian dissident (today's Ahmad Chalabi), as well as former U.S.
government officials (seeking to "empower resistance" inside Iran),
to make the claim the Iran is, in fact, "gearing for war" with the
No, notwithstanding the inflammatory title that the Moonie editors attached
to Salhani's article—"Is Iran Geared For War?"—Iran is
not planning to attack the United States. Instead, it is merely taking very
prudent measures to defend itself against a possible illegal preventive war
instigated by the "war party" in the Bush administration.
Although America's past is riddled with instances in which a "war party"—remember
the "War Hawks" Henry Clay and John C. Calhoun?—within a given
party or administration labored mightily to con its subjects into wars of aggression,
it's America's singular misfortune today to be guided by a "war party"
in and around the Bush administration, which consists of neocons and chickenhawks
who seek to compensate for personal cowardice or neglect of military duty (especially
during the Vietnam war) with martial rhetoric and by sending courageous soldiers
to fight, kill, and perhaps die for them. Note President George W. Bush's "Bring
But it is America's greater misfortune today to be informed by a so-called
"watch dog" mainstream news media that supinely reports this war party's
will to kill without insisting upon the hard evidence necessary for justifying
war. Although they failed miserably in their 2002-03 coverage of Iraq, unfortunately
this is not a recent phenomenon. For as John L. Harper has recently concluded:
"The premises on which the United States decided to go to war in 1812,
1846, 1898, 1917, 1950, 1964–65 and 2002–03, were largely false."
[John L. Harper, "Anatomy of a Habit: America's Unnecessary Wars,"
Survival, Summer 2005, p. 79]
But, forget the past. Just a few days ago, on September 26, 2005, The Telegraph
of Calcutta, India issued an astounding report that has yet to cause a ripple
within America's mainstream news media. In the fifth paragraph of the article,
"Gulf factor key to PM's Iran vote decision," were the following words:
"Top-ranking Americans have told equally top-ranking Indians in recent
weeks that THE US HAS PLANS TO INVADE IRAN BEFORE BUSH'S TERM ENDS"
Thoughtful, decent, moral citizens of these United States: I urge you to write
to the editors of your local and national news outlets to insist that they authenticate
or repudiate the information reported by The Telegraph. And I further urge you
to write your congressman (or congresswoman) to inquire about their knowledge
concerning this assertion. Finally, I urge you to write to President Bush, Secretary
of State Condoleezza Rice and/or Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld to inquire
about their plans to invade Iran before they leave office.
We simply cannot permit the Bush "war party" to run roughshod
over America's democracy once again.