By: Soraya Sepahpour-Ulrich
Indeed, there is honor among thieves. Given that the US under President Eisenhower delivered a coup against the democratically elected Prime Minister Mossadeq to appease the British, the British have since been eager to fulfill their obligations towards the Americans. Every theft has been mutually beneficial, although the prize has never been equally divided. The motives behind the decisions have never been openly discussed and democratically concluded; thievery and murder requires discretion, especially in democracies, it would seem.
No doubt most of us have fresh memories of the famous ‘dossier’, the 284 page intelligence report by the Blair government that nailed the coffin of almost one million Iraqis and over 3000 American servicemen and women; the foreword delivered by Tony Blair warning us that Saddam Hossein had the ability and the intention to launch WMD in 45 minutes[i] lent support to our government’s campaign of misinformation in order to invade sovereign Iraq. The pool of blood from the ongoing death toll must drowned the shameful discovery that Blair had plagiarized several scholarly papers to make up the false allegations in order for the partners to take us to war[ii].
It is not the first time that the two conspirators worked together to cause ruin and steal a nation.
The Island of Diego Garcia discovered in the 1500s by the Portugese was a territory of Mauritius between 1814 and 1965, at which point it became part of part of the Chagos Archipelago, part of the newly created British Indian Ocean Territory. In 1970, the British leased the Island to the Americans. The Americans had asked the British for one of their colonies for a military base. Britain obliged. In 1967 through 1973, the native inhabitants, known as the Ilois, or the Chagossians, were forced to leave the island. . Uprooted and robbed of their livelihood, the Chagossians now live in poverty in Mauritius’s urban slums, more than 1,000 miles from their homeland. A smaller number were deported to the Seychelles. All but the seagulls were left on the island. It is of note that Mr. Cheney’s company, Halliburton, built the base. Later, the campaign of ‘shock and awe’ against Iraq was carried out from the stolen nation of Diego Garcia.[iii]
It is equally noteworthy that during the run-up to the Iraq invasion, while Fox News and other such media ‘established’ that Saddam Hossein was developing chemical weapons by showing videos of dogs being injected with chemicals for the purpose of experimentation and development of chemical weapons, molding the public opinion for the invasion of Iraq, our own crimes have always been kept hidden from the public. After the natives of Diego Garcia Island were expelled from their homes, "officials ordered their pets to be exterminated. They were gassed with exhaust fumes from American military vehicles” [iv]
Today, the British are once again facilitating invasion, war, and mass murder.
Britain has sent fifteen marines into Iranian waters to provoke a reaction from Iran. While it is rumored in many quarters that this is setting up a ‘Gulf of Tonkin-style pretext for war’, undoubtedly the British cannot claim that the sailors were in Iraqi waters as the Shatt-el-Arab waterway is not clearly identifiable and one has to question how the British have come up with a maritime boundary.
While internally Iran has its problems, the threat to the outside world is its lack of good public relations. It does not have the knowledge, the power, the will, or the economic strength of the United States to hire Charlotte Beers who was appointed Under Secretary of State for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs in October 2001. Beers’ job was to rebrand Osama bin Laden as a mass murderer to millions of Muslims and win over sympathy. Likewise, they do not have Turkey’s ‘in’ who in 1985 engaged Gray & Company at $600,000 a year; a prominent Washington public relations company with close ties to the Reagan administration to give Turkey an image make-over. Iran’s poor PR is exacerbated by its own actions, compounded by the mainstream media. While the display of the captured sailors is not serving Iran’s national interest, especially by putting a headscarf on the female sailor – something not tolerated by the majority of women in Iran, it should by no means be a distraction of who the real guilty party is. Threat of inciting war in order to commit mass murder is far graver than that of foolhardiness.