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General News    H2'ed 7/9/12

War Gaming The Iran War: How The US Plans For Aggression

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In 2002, with the invasion of Baghdad still a year off, US agencies and departments were already planning the future of a post war-Iraq, to build on the sanctions they imposed there which experts concluded led to the deaths of as many as a million children.  

Even if their expectations and hopes were not realized--and most were not, thanks to an imperial arrogance and frequent stupidity--- it is still instructive to look back at the well-calculated process led by self-styled "defense" (sic) intellectuals.

The covert dimensions of all this scheming is still not fully understood twelve years later, but the US began by forging an integrated inter-agency strategy. They invested hundreds of hours and millions of dollars in planning an aggressive war and occupation. And then, schemed by pretending their policy was backed by the world by building a farcical "coalition of the willing" that was their for show, not as allies with genuine input. 

The best way to understand the way this strategizing operates today is to appreciate how they play these war games.

Here's part of what a Defense Department document put forth, with great confidence,--or "chutzpah', depending on your culture, of course, about what they hoped would happen then as they detailed all of their "contingencies" and "outcomes."

"Planning in the U.S. Government for post-war Iraq was an interagency process involving officials from the Departments of Defense, State, Justice, Treasury, Energy, and Commerce; the United States Agencyxfor International Development (USAID), Central Intelligence Agency, as well as from the staffs of the National Security Council and the Office of Management and Budget.

DoD mid and senior-level planners and officials engaged in multiple planning initiatives for post-war contingencies. DoD staff in the theater and in Washington evaluated a wide-range of possible outcomes, led efforts to merge and synchronize planning from various government agencies, and shaped planning for the major combat phase of the operation to allow for the best possible post-war conditions. 

Key to DoD planning for this operation was the assumption that liberating Iraq from 35 years of tyrannical rule and severe social and economic underdevelopment would be a challenging prospect."

However "challenging," this "prospect" clearly screwed up in the end at the cost of as many as a million Iraqi lives and trillions of dollars. A real democracy was not seeded; one authoritarian government displaced another. The country was plundered.

There is no guarantee that having failed once in Iraq, the bureaucracies that planned the pillage it won't try again in Iran, utilizing these same templates.

We can reasonably infer that a similar coordinated task force approach is being taken in connection with war planning against Iran, which may have a similar outcome, given how little Washington seems to have learned in the interim.

In June 2012, Defense News reported,

TEL AVIV -- U.S. war planners have developed "a viable contingency" for Iran that U.S. President Barack Obama will not hesitate to authorize if the military option is the only way to prevent Tehran from acquiring nuclear weapons, according to a former senior Pentagon official.

In two separate addresses at a prestigious policy conference here, Michèle Flournoy, former U.S. undersecretary of defense for policy, publicly cautioned Israel against the destabilizing and delegitimizing effects of a premature, unilateral strike on Iran.

"Having sat in the Pentagon, I can assure you of the quality of the work that has been done. ... The military option for the president is real,"'said Flournoy,who left the Pentagon in February and continues to advise the Obama re-election campaign." (emphasis mine!)

This is telling because it suggests that an attack on Iran is being gamed out as part of a re-election campaign by advisor who works in both the political and military worlds.

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News Dissector Danny Schechter is blogger in chief at Mediachannel.Org He is the author of PLUNDER: Investigating Our Economic Calamity (Cosimo Books) available at See
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