By Stephen Lendman
Since Iran’s 1979 revolution and US hostage crisis, Washington’s been spoiling for a fight. The Carter administration considered invading and seizing its oil fields.
Washington exploited Iran/Iraq tensions and encouraged Saddam Hussein to attack. Earlier Iran’s Shah was supported. After 1979, US foreign policy shifted.
The Carter Doctrine pledged Middle East military intervention if US interests were threatened. Reagan escalated Carter policies short of committing US forces in combat. Saddam then got US backing. A decade of war followed. America pretended support for both sides, but mostly gave it to Iraq.
US/Iranian relations remain tense. Washington’s sought regime change in Tehran for years. Various confrontational tactics include on and off saber rattling, sanctions, and direct meddling in Iran’s internal affairs, perhaps including covert US Special Forces and CIA operatives there causing trouble.
Why not? They do it in dozens of countries globally, using death squads and other destabilizing tactics.
Washington also makes baseless accusations of anti-US involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan. It calls Tehran a threat to world peace, saying its commercial nuclear program plans nuclear weapons development. Unmentioned is Israel’s known arsenal and willingness to use it preemptively.
The Plot Thickens
US media scoundrels regurgitate official lies and suppress vital truths. New York Times writers and commentators play lead roles. The latest alleged plot is laughable on its face. But it’s headline news across America, including on The Times’ front page, saying “US Accuses Iranians of Plotting to Kill Saudi Envoy.”
What’s explained sounds more like a bad film plot, saying:
Washington “accused Iranian officials of plotting to murder Saudi Arabia’s ambassador to the United States (Adel al-Jubeir) in a bizarre scheme involving an Iran-American used-car salesman who believed he was hiring assassins from a Mexican drug cartel for $1.5 million.”
Also allegedly involved were plans to bomb Israel’s Washington embassy and Saudi and Israeli embassies in Argentina.
But there’s more, a “side deal” said The Times between Iran’s Revolutionary Guard (its elite military unit) and Mexico’s Los Zetas drug cartel to smuggle opium from the Middle East to Mexico.
The alleged plans “never progressed,” perhaps because there were none, just baseless accusations to further heighten US/Iranian tensions and get hawkish congressional members to call for direct confrontation.
On October 11, Attorney General Eric Holder said:
“Today, the Department of Justice is announcing charges against two people who allegedly attempted to carry out a deadly plot that was directed by factions of the Iranian government to assassinate a foreign ambassador here in the United States.”
Accused were Manssor Arbabsair, a naturalized US citizen holding an Iranian passport, and Gholam Shakuri, an Iranian-based member of its Revolutionary Guard Quds Force. On September 29, Arbabsair was arrested. Shakuri is still at large.
“The complaint alleges that this conspiracy was conceived, sponsored and directed from Iran and constitutes a flagrant violation of US and international law….”
Besides charging Arbabsir and Shakuri, Holder also said Washington “is committed to holding Iran accountable for its actions.”
Both men are charged with “conspiracy to murder a foreign official, conspiracy to use a weapon of mass destruction, and conspiracy to commit an act of international terrorism, among other charges.”
According to Holder, they met a “confidential informant from the Drug Enforcement Administration” in Mexico last May, posing as a drug cartel member.
The Washington Post said the “confidential DEA source (called “the Mexican”) was described in court papers only as a paid informant who was once charged in the United States with a drug offense. The charges were dropped (in return for his) provid(ing) valuable information in a number of (sting) cases….”
Allegedly, Arbasair wired $100,000 to a US bank account “as a down payment for the attempted assassination.” Holder also claimed he confessed and provided “other valuable information” with no corroborating evidence to prove what’s clearly an Obama administration plot to file bogus charges and heighten tensions with Iran.
In fact, Arbabsiar’s lawyer, Sabrina Shroff, said her client will plead not guilty if indicted. Apparently he denies involvement despite Holder claiming he confessed.
Iran’s UN ambassador Mohammad Khazaee said his nation is “outraged” about clearly baseless charges. In a strongly worded letter to UN Secretary-General Ban K-moon, he wrote:
Iran “strongly and categorically rejects these fabricated and baseless allegations based on the suspicious claims by an individual.”
President Armadinejad’s spokesman Ali Akbar Javanfekr said:
“The US government and the CIA have very good experience in making up film scripts….It appears that this new scenario is for diverting the US public opinion from internal crises,” suggesting it’s connected to diluting ongoing anti-Wall Street protests across America.
Iran’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast called Holder’s accusations a “new propaganda campaign” involving a “prefabricated scenario.”
Hillary Clinton said Washington is “actively engaged in a very concerted diplomatic outreach to many capitals” to counter Iran’s denial. She added that the issue has “potential for international reaction that will further isolate Iran,” stopping short of calling for direct action.
Congressional hawks and America’s right wing media do it often on their own.
An October 11 Wall Street Journal editorial called the plot “a sobering wake-up call” in America’s “war on terror.”
“Had it succeeded, (it) arguably (would have been) an act of war….The appalling news needs to be placed in the broader context of Iran’s behavior,” involving “conspiracy to commit international terrorism….It’s past time for US policy toward Iran to reflect the reality of what it is dealing with.”
Obama “underscored that the United States believes this plot to be a flagrant violent of US and international law, and reiterated (his) commitment to meet our responsibilities to ensure the security of diplomats serving in our country.”
Bill Clinton called the accusations “well-founded.”
The extremist right-wing Heritage Foundation’s foreign policy director James Carafino called the alleged scheme “a belligerent act against the US (that) as such would call for a proportional military response.”
A more sober Stratfor Global Intelligence called the plot “far-fetched.” Cautioning against claims against Iran, founder and CEO George Friedman said doing so “involve(s) substantial political risk.”
“Iran has been known to carry out preoperational surveillance in the United States, but it has not yet used this intelligence to carry out a high-profile attack.”
He added that Iran has nothing to gain from committing a terror attack on US soil and everything to lose.
Former Assistant Secretary of State for Public Affairs PJ Crowley commented in the London Guardian, calling the alleged plot “far-fetched….(O)n the face of it (it’s) so fantastic that it begs a disclaimer….It’s unclear how much Iran would stand to gain by sanctioning or supporting this plot.”
Former CIA case officer Robert Baer said “the Quds are better than this. It they wanted to come after you, you’d be dead already.”
Alireza Nader, Rand Corporation Iran specialist, asked “Why would Iran want to assassinate the Saudi ambassador in Washington? (The plot) would be outside the norm.”
Senator Joseph Lieberman (Indep. Dem. CT) called the alleged plot a “profound threat posed by the Iranian regime and the reach of its terrorist activities to American soil.”
Senator Saxby Chambliss (R. GA) said “In addition to allegedly sponsoring this plot, Iran has supported and provided weapons for attacks on our soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan. This has continued far too long with no repercussions.”
Rep. Peter King (R. NY) said “Iran’s assassination of a foreign diplomat in our country would have violated both US and international law, and represented an act of war.”
Rep. Michael McCaul (R. TX) said if true “this would constitute an act of war not only against the Saudis and Israelis but against the United States as well.”
Rep. Ted Poe (R. TX) on Fox News called the alleged plot “an act of war against the United States.”
A Final Comment
A May 2011 study by New York University’s School of Law Center for Human Rights and Global Justice headlined, “Targeted and Entrapped: Manufacturing the ‘Homegrown Threat’ in the United States.”
It discussed what this writer’s featured in dozens of past articles on Muslim Americans victimized by false accusations.
It explained how, post-9/11, entrapment by FBI plants led to prosecutions of over 200 individuals on bogus terrorism related charges. Washington highlights them as proof of foiling plots that, in fact, never existed.
Nearly always innocent Muslims are targeted for their faith and ethnicity for political advantage. Major media scoundrels regurgitate official lies, pretending they’re accurate accounts of foiled plots.
That none ever succeeded is reason enough to suggest none existed, but media reports leave that unexplained, let alone the implausibility of some charges.
They included blowing up Chicago’s Sears Tower, destroying New York landmarks, targeting US soldiers at Fort Dix, NJ, US marines at Quantico, VA, downing National Guard aircraft with stinger missiles, and a Pakistan ambassador’s with a surface to air one.
Not a shred of evidence provided proof, just the word of FBI informants well paid to entrap and lie, then get America’s media to repeat them without questioning the validity of any charges.
The likelihood that any country, let alone Iran, would plan terror plots on US soil is preposterous on its face. Cui bono is issue one. Clearly, Iran has nothing to gain and everything to lose by plotting what Holder charged.
Yet political Washington and major media scoundrels highlight baseless accusations without demanding clear proof they’re true. There is none except for what a DEA agent plant (a former felon) and Holder claim.
It’s their word against common sense, suggesting the implausibility of what they charge. It also highlight’s iconic radical journalist IF Stone (1907 – 1989) saying:
“All governments are run by liars and nothing they say should be believed.”
With his own in Washington in mind, he taught that to young journalism students, suggesting they paste it on their bathroom mirrors so not to forget.
It makes sense, as well as avoiding major media liars and using reliable online sites for real information and analysis.