Prospects and Consequences of Attacking Iran - by Stephen Lendman
Hopefully its folly will prevent it. Otherwise, expect severe repercussions, including a considerable counterattack and disruption of regional oil supplies, further impacting a troubled global economy. So why consider it, given the December 2007 US National Intelligence Estimate (NIE) saying:
"We judge with high confidence that in fall 2003, Tehran halted its nuclear weapons program; (perhaps it never had one); we also assess with moderate-to-high confidence that Tehran at a minimum is keeping open the option to develop nuclear weapons..." True or not, dozens of nations may consider one, for defense, not offense in a hostile world, America and Israel the main aggressors, threatening humanity with their weapons of mass destruction.
The NIE also said:
"We assess with moderate confidence Tehran had not restarted its nuclear program as of mid-2007, but we do not know whether it currently intends to develop (them).
Tehran's decision to halt its nuclear weapons program suggests it is less determined to develop (them) than we have been judging since 2005."
Expect a new NIE update later this summer, hopefully with similar conclusions, then Director of National Intelligence Admiral Dennis Blair saying so to Congress before his dismissal, perhaps why he was sacked, a "mistake" his successor, General James Clapper, won't make, but what's coming isn't certain, given influential forces on both sides in America, the same ones arguing them for years. Yet beyond saber-rattling rhetoric and sanctions, the administration's position is unclear.
Posturing and Provocations
Besides Washington and Israeli rhetoric, the Security Council (on June 9) imposed new sanctions on Iran, followed by America and EU nations adding others, banning transfers of refining, liquefaction, and liquid natural gas technology as well as on trade, finance, Iranian banks, transport, and against the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC).
In addition, some large western insurers won't cover Iranian shipping, deputy manager of the Iranian company Sea Pars, Mohammad Rounaghi, saying "most ports will refuse them entry if they are not covered for possible damages."
Not according to Mohammad Hussein Dajmar, Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines (IRISL) saying, "The world has many ports. We will sail to those nations that want to do business with us," among them China, Russia, India, Venezuela, and Brazil, important trading partners.
In early May, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad attended the UN Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) review conference, affirming his nation's compliance, IAEA inspections confirming it, its chief, Yukiya Amano, saying Tehran hasn't diverted nuclear materials for weapons, though he can't "confirm that all nuclear material is in peaceful activities," a contradiction on its face.
In contrast, non-signatories Israel, India and Pakistan are nuclear outlaws. In addition, in 1970, when NPT was implemented, (189 nations are now parties), the five acknowledged powers - America, Russia, China, Britain and France - agreed to stringent safeguards for their commercial programs in return for progressively dismantling existing stockpiles. To date, there's little change, America asserting the preemptive right to use them against any perceived threat, a clear NPT violation and danger to global stability.
In his January 27 State of the Union address, Obama said:
"the international community is more united, and the Islamic Republic of Iran is more isolated....as Iran's leaders continue to ignore their obligations, there should be no doubt: They....will face growing consequences. That is a promise" - so far, just rhetoric and sanctions, and according to Council for Foreign Relations senior fellow for Middle Eastern Studies, Steven A. Cook, in a June 9, 2009 Foreign Policy op-ed, if Israel(i) (and by inference Washington) leaders were going to strike, they would not be broadcasting it to the world."
They're saber-rattling instead, reports saying Washington is stockpiling bunker-buster bombs in Diego Garcia (about 1,000 miles south of India). In addition, Egypt let an Israeli submarine and 11 US warships, including an aircraft carrier, sail through the Suez Canal to the Red Sea. A deliberate provocation ahead of a planned false flag attack? It bears watching as events are fluid, the most recent House Resolution 1553 on July 22: