The Neoconservatives, despite wandering in the wilderness after their Iraq debacle, are trying to keep the dream of serial wars in the Middle East alive. Freedom Watch and the Foundation for Democracy in Iran sponsored a National Press Club event on November 17, in which former CIA director James Woolsey, Congresswoman Michele Bachmann, and former UN ambassador Alan Keyes demanded war on Iran.
There's little reason to believe that the sort of propaganda they were pushing will end any time soon, or that the corporate media will ever give it the wholehearted condemnation it deserves, much less see it prosecuted under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, which bans war propaganda. But the desperation in the voices of these cheerleaders for war speaking to an almost empty room, and the media's choice to completely ignore them, is heartening.
The full event is available in video on the website of Freedom Watch, the group that sponsored the conference.
In watching it, I spotted several of the major types of war lies that are analyzed in my book War Is A Lie: Iran must be attacked because it is evil and demonic, including in ways that do not threaten anyone outside Iran in any way. At the same time, attacking Iran would be an act of defense, not offense. We can take this defensive step or perish -- there is no other choice. And, in addition, while Iran or at least its government is evil, a war on Iran would be a humanitarian act on behalf of the people we would be bombing, an act in the name of democracy whether they want it or not. The war would not actually hurt anyone, or at least would be far milder than the rape and torture of the evil dictator. War would liberate the Iranians.
War rationales that don't work as propaganda, like control of the earth's oil supply, were openly stated once and then ignored. That, too, is typical. Real reasons for war are not secret, they're just not repeated over and over.
Larry Klayman of Freedom Watch spoke first and denounced the U.S. policy of "appeasement" toward Iran. But appeasement is supposed to mean a failure to resist attack. Iran has not attacked anyone in centuries. Iran has not made any demands on our nation. Iran has learned to produce a couple tons of low-enriched uranium for fuel or medicine -- a catastrophically bad choice, but one the law permits and one the United States has also made. Iran has been falsely alleged to be developing nuclear weapons. If, despite the absence of evidence, Iran were developing such weapons, how would that be something for the United States to appease, and how would we be appeasing it? Apparently by failing to launch a war on the basis of the possibility that Iran might get nuclear weapons someday, the likelihood of which is of course increased by all the U.S. talk of launching a war.