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Gareth Porter (born 18 June 1942, Independence, Kansas) is an American historian, investigative journalist and policy analyst on U.S. foreign and military policy. A strong opponent of U.S. wars in Southeast Asia, and the Middle East, he has also written on the potential for diplomatic compromise to end or avoid wars in Korea, Vietnam, Cambodia, the Philippines, Iraq and Iran. He is the author of a history of the origins of the Vietnam War, Perils of Dominance: Imbalance of Power and the Road to War in Vietnam.
Porter has written regular news reports and news analyses on political, diplomatic and military developments in regard to Middle East conflicts for Inter Press Service since 2005. He was the first journalist to provide a detailed account of the alleged secret Iranian diplomatic proposal to the United States in 2003, and has published an in-depth analysis of an exit strategy for Iraq
(17 comments) SHARE Friday, July 29, 2016 Hillary Clinton and Her Hawks
Focusing on domestic issues, Hillary Clinton's acceptance speech sidestepped the deep concerns anti-war Democrats have about her hawkish foreign policy, which is already taking shape in the shadows, reports Gareth Porter.
(12 comments) SHARE Monday, January 17, 2011 From Military-Industrial Complex to Permanent War State
Fifty years after Dwight D. Eisenhower's January 17, 1961 speech on the "military-industrial complex", that threat has morphed into a far more powerful and sinister force than Eisenhower could have imagined. It has become a "Permanent War State", with the power to keep the United States at war continuously for the indefinite future.
(5 comments) SHARE Friday, November 16, 2012 How Mistress Helped Petraeus
A back story to the sex scandal that ended David Petraeus's 14 months as director of the CIA is that his mistress, Paula Broadwell, was an apologist for abusive actions by the U.S. command in Afghanistan. She defended the leveling of an Afghan village deemed uncooperative, Gareth Porter says at Inter Press Service.
(1 comments) SHARE Friday, April 20, 2018 What Ken Burns Left Out of the Vietnam Story
Indiscriminate targeting of civilian areas and "collective punishment" of the civilian population for support for or assistance to combatants are clear violations of the laws of war. But Ward doesn't even focus on the use of U.S. air power in South Vietnam apart from close air support in ground battles, much less acknowledge that the U.S. military bears responsibility for war crimes.
(4 comments) SHARE Monday, January 31, 2011 Why Washington Clings to a Failed Middle East Strategy
The death throes of the Mubarak regime in Egypt signal a new level of crisis for a U.S. Middle East strategy that has shown itself over and over again in recent years to be based on nothing more than the illusion of power. The incipient loss of the U.S. client regime in Egypt is an obvious moment for a fundamental adjustment in that strategy.
(12 comments) SHARE Saturday, January 11, 2014 Gates Conceals Real Story of "Gaming" Obama on Afghan War
The leaking to the news media of a politically damaging version of internal debate between the White House and the coalition pushing for a major escalation was nothing less than a shot across the bow from Obama's principal national security officials, including Petraeus, Mullen, Gates and Clinton. They were signaling to the president that he would incur a significant political cost if he rejected the McChrystal request.
SHARE Saturday, November 18, 2017 Israel's Ploy Selling a Syrian Nuke Strike
The Iraq WMD fiasco wasn't the only time political pressure twisted U.S. intelligence judgments. In 2007, Israel sold the CIA on a dubious claim about a North Korean nuclear reactor in the Syrian desert, reports Gareth Porter.
(7 comments) SHARE Friday, March 13, 2015 The Real Story Behind the Republicans' Iran Letter
Members of Congress don't arrive at their positions on issues related to Iran through discussion and debate among themselves. They are given their marching orders by AIPAC lobbyists, and time after time, they sign the letters and vote for legislation or resolution that they are given, as former AIPAC lobbyist M. J. Rosenberg has recalled.
(8 comments) SHARE Sunday, November 19, 2017 Is the Trump Administration Planning a First Strike on North Korea?
It isn't possible to know definitely whether the Trump administration intends to strike first against North Korea. The official threats of such a strike can be discounted as obviously related to an elaborate--if somewhat crude--psychological warfare campaign. But more twists and turns in US policy can be expected in the coming months, and the desperate desire to coerce Pyongyang may have given rise to wishful thinking.
(31 comments) SHARE Saturday, October 6, 2018 Could Trump Take Down the American Empire?
More than any other presidency in modern history, Donald Trump's has been a veritable sociopolitical wrecking ball, deliberately stoking conflict by playing to xenophobic and racist currents in American society and debasing its political discourse. That fact has been widely discussed. But Trump's attacks on the system of the global U.S. military presence and commitments have gotten far less notice.
(8 comments) SHARE Friday, February 3, 2012 Obama to Israel: No US War on Iran
President Obama is caught in a dilemma, how to dissuade Israel from going to war with Iran without alienating pro-Israeli voters in November. So, the Obama administration has told Israel that the U.S. won't support an attack on Iran but has done so quietly.
(1 comments) SHARE Saturday, November 7, 2015 The sham Syrian peace conference
It is clear that the international conference on Syria that held its first meeting in Vienna on October 30 is a sham conference that is not capable of delivering any peace negotiations, and that the Obama administration knew that perfectly well from the start.
(2 comments) SHARE Tuesday, September 13, 2016 Al Qaeda's Ties to US-Backed Syrian Rebels
The U.S. is demanding the grounding of Syria's air force but is resisting Russian demands that U.S.-armed rebels separate from Al Qaeda, a possible fatal flaw in the new cease-fire, writes Gareth Porter.
(3 comments) SHARE Sunday, November 18, 2018 America's Permanent-War Complex
In the new permanent-war complex the interests of the arms contractors have increasingly dominated over the interests of the civilian Pentagon and the military services and dominance has became a new driving force for continued war.
(9 comments) SHARE Sunday, August 30, 2015 Barak's tales of Israel's near war with Iran conceal the real story
The Obama administration pretended to be alarmed about Netanyahu's readiness to attack Iran. But Obama was actually playing along with the Israeli strategy in order to line up support for a more aggressive regime of sanctions and then to put pressure on Iran to enter into negotiations aimed at closing down its enrichment program.
(4 comments) SHARE Saturday, January 3, 2015 The real politics behind the US war on IS
Under the circumstances that exist in Iraq and Syria, the most rational response to IS's military successes would have been to avoid US military action altogether. But Obama had powerful incentives to adopt a military campaign that it could sell to key political constituencies. It makes no sense strategically, but avoids the perils that really matter to American politicians.
(11 comments) SHARE Friday, June 23, 2017 How America Armed Terrorists in Syria
By helping its Sunni allies provide weapons to al Nusra Front and its allies and by funneling into the war zone sophisticated weapons that were bound to fall into al Nusra hands or strengthen their overall military position, U.S. policy has been largely responsible for having extended al Qaeda's power across a significant part of Syrian territory.
(17 comments) SHARE Saturday, February 25, 2017 How "New Cold Warriors" Cornered Trump
The U.S. intelligence community's extraordinary campaign of leaks claiming improper ties between President Trump's team and Russia seeks to ensure a lucrative New Cold War by blocking detente, reports Gareth Porter.
(6 comments) SHARE Saturday, February 22, 2014 U.S. Adopts Israeli Demand to Bring Iran’s Missiles into Nuclear Talks
The Barack Obama administration's insistence that Iran discuss its ballistic missile program in the negotiations for a comprehensive nuclear agreement brings its position into line with that of Israel and senators who introduced legislation drafted by the pro-Israel lobby group AIPAC aimed at torpedoing the negotiations.
(2 comments) SHARE Friday, November 24, 2017 How US Tries to Link Iran to Al Qaeda
The U.S. propaganda campaign against Iran has tried to tie it somehow to Al Qaeda, including exploitation of a newly released document, but a close reading shows a very different story, says Gareth Porter at The American Conservative.
(2 comments) SHARE Wednesday, November 7, 2012 Did Netanyahu Seek War with Iran?
The Israeli news media is reporting that in 2010 Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu ordered Israel's military onto high alert for an attack on Iran's nuclear program but was blocked by his military and intelligence chiefs. But the question remains how close to war Israel actually got, writes Gareth Porter for Inter Press Service.
(3 comments) SHARE Friday, December 29, 2017 How Cheney and His Allies Created the North Korea Nuclear Missile Crisis
Cheney and his allies derailed diplomatic efforts to curb North Korean nuclear and missile development, not because they opposed "arms control," but because those agreements would have been a political obstacle to fielding the group's main interest: funding and fielding a national missile defense system as quickly as possible.
(2 comments) SHARE Thursday, July 27, 2017 How CIA and Allies Trapped Obama in the Syrian Arms Debacle
In the ideology of the national security elite -- especially its Democratic wing -- regional alliances are essential building blocks of what is styled as the U.S.-sponsored global "rules-based order." In practice, however, they have served as instruments for the advancement of the power and prestige of the national security bureaucracies themselves.
(6 comments) SHARE Thursday, May 24, 2018 Bolton Trying to Convince Trump to Topple Iran
John Bolton may have backed off wanting to bomb Iran, saying he's not the one to decide, but he's hardly given up trying to convince Trump to replace the regime in Tehran, as Gareth Porter explains.
(10 comments) SHARE Saturday, March 2, 2019 The Right May Finally Get Its War on Iran
John Bolton has never made a secret of his burning desire to stoke a war between the United States and Iran. But Bolton is not the only one on Donald Trump's national security team who dreams of such a military confrontation. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has joined with Bolton in recent months to prepare a case for possible war with Iran.
(3 comments) SHARE Tuesday, November 27, 2018 U.K. and Ecuador Conspire to Deliver Julian Assange to U.S. Authorities
Behind the revelation of those secret charges for supposedly threatening U.S. national security is a murky story of a political ploy by the Ecuadorian and British governments to create a phony rationale for ousting Assange from the embassy. The two regimes agreed to base their plan on the claim that Assange was conspiring to flee to Russia.
(3 comments) SHARE Sunday, September 25, 2016 How the Pentagon sank the US-Russia deal in Syria -- and the ceasefire
US and allied planes carried out multiple strikes on a Syrian government base and killed at least 62 Syrian troops and wounded more than 100. The Pentagon acknowledged a mistake in targeting, but the impact on the ceasefire deal was immediate. Syria accused the US of a deliberate attack on its forces, and the Russians similarly expressed doubt about the US explanation.
SHARE Saturday, January 20, 2018 Why Trump's North Korea "Bloody Nose" Campaign Is a Big Bluff
Few people outside the administration believe that China will save Trump's bacon. In the end, Trump, like all his post-Cold War predecessors, will have to choose between ineffective threats and real negotiations with North Korea that deal with its demands for security and normalization of relations.
SHARE Friday, March 6, 2015 The long history of Israel gaming the "Iranian threat"
Mossad has repudiated Netanyahu's political manipulation of the Iran threat. Since 2012, at least Israeli intelligence has agreed with US intelligence that Iran has not made any decision to try to acquire nuclear weapons. And a series of Mossad chiefs have taken the unprecedented step openly rejecting Netanyahu's use of the term "existential threat."
(8 comments) SHARE Friday, October 5, 2012 How Netanyahu's bomb Iran ploy failed
The evidence now available indicates that the Netanyahu campaign about a unilateral strike on Iran was from the beginning a bluff aimed at pressuring President Barack Obama to adopt both "crippling sanctions" against Iran's oil export sector and an explicit threat of war if Iran did not end its nuclear program.
SHARE Friday, August 17, 2012 Israel's Power Play on Obama
Israel's latest saber-rattling over Iran's nuclear program may be a pre-election strategy to coerce President Obama into a firm commitment that, if he's re-elected and if Iran doesn't destroy its own nuclear "capability," he will authorize a U.S. military strike next year.
SHARE Saturday, May 23, 2015 Obama's failure on Saudi-Qatari aid to al-Qaeda affiliate
Obama is well aware that the fall of the Assad regime is likely to result in a terrorist regime in Syria. His decision to tolerate -- at least for now - Saudi and Qatari policies that make that outcome far more likely appears to reflect little more than a personal political interest.
(3 comments) SHARE Wednesday, April 1, 2015 Iran Demands Lifting of Sanctions for "Irreversible" Moves, Says Insider
the remaining bone of contention is that the six-nation group has insisted on maintaining the entire legal system of sanctions in place, even after the sanctions have been suspended, until the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has reached the conclusion that Iran's nuclear program is entirely for peaceful purposes -- a process that it admits could take many years.
(1 comments) SHARE Saturday, April 4, 2015 Iran won upfront sanctions relief, but with potential snags
Iran is certainly concerned about how a future US administration could and would implement the agreement. Iran was insisting that the UN Security Council resolution repealing previous resolutions with a new one reflecting the comprehensive agreement be passed before the change in administration in Washington in 2017.
(6 comments) SHARE Friday, October 16, 2015 US Make-Believe in Syrian War
Official Washington and its mainstream media push deeper and deeper into a Mideast fantasyland where mythical "moderate rebels" in Syria represent a real force rather than a P.R. cover for Sunni jihadists, all the better to bash the Russians for their military offensive, as Gareth Porter explains at Middle East Eye.
(1 comments) SHARE Saturday, October 21, 2017 Trump Bows to Neocons, Netanyahu
Rather than expand U.S. exports to Iran -- and create more American jobs -- President Trump fell in line behind Israel's P.M. Netanyahu, decertifying the Iran-nuclear deal and risking more war, as Gareth Porter explains at The American Conservative.
(2 comments) SHARE Tuesday, May 5, 2015 US Media Shields Saudi War on Yemen
The U.S. news media always seems to have an excuse for the actions of the Saudi-Israeli alliance, now trivializing Saudi Arabia's open aggression against Yemen as simply one side of a "proxy war" with Iran, a misleading depiction, says Gareth Porter.
(1 comments) SHARE Friday, March 27, 2015 Will Sanctions Fixation Kill Iran Nuke Deal?
An agreement to constrain Iran's nuclear program is within reach but could still fail if President Obama succumbs to political pressure and refuses to grant Iran meaningful relief from sanctions, as Gareth Porter explains.
(5 comments) SHARE Friday, January 6, 2017 Inquiry Points Toward a Pentagon Plot to Subvert Obama's Syria Policy
The hope of provoking a Syrian-Russian decision to end the cease-fire and thus the plan for the JIC was apparently based on the assumption that it would be perceived by both Russians and Syrians as evidence that Obama was not in control of U.S. policy and therefore could not be trusted as a partner in managing the conflict. That assumption proved correct.
(3 comments) SHARE Saturday, December 17, 2011 How Iraq Maneuvered the US Exit
The neocons' treasured Iraq War myth of their "successful surge" is belied by the actual history of how Iraqi Shiite leaders collaborated with Iran to tamp down internal violence and then destroy neocon plans for long-term U.S. military bases to project power in the Middle East.
(2 comments) SHARE Friday, June 5, 2015 Demands in US-Iran nuclear talks as political Kabuki theatre
The US delegation is almost certainly preparing to give up its demands for visits to military sites on demand and interviews with Iranian scientists. Meanwhile, however, we can expect the Kabuki theatre over those demands to continue as long as it can be useful for managing the Obama administration domestic political problems.
(3 comments) SHARE Sunday, December 14, 2014 The CIA's Bureaucracy of Torture
Bureaucratic inertia -- the CIA's desire for bigger budgets and then its fear of negative consequences -- helped drive the torture program from its frantic start to its belated finish, as Gareth Porter explains.
SHARE Wednesday, October 17, 2012 Iran And West Inch Toward Nuke Deal
The outline for a resolution of the Iranian nuclear dispute is coming into focus, perhaps only waiting for the U.S. presidential election to be decided. But suspicions between Iran and the West continue to beset the slow progress toward a resolution, as Gareth Porter noted for Inter Press Service.
(2 comments) SHARE Friday, March 30, 2012 What Iran Can Do to Strike Back
Israel's threats to bomb Iran have hinged on how much damage Israeli aircraft can inflict on Iran's nuclear facilities, but another worry is how much destruction Iranian missiles can inflict on Israel, a danger that Israeli officials are downplaying.
SHARE Sunday, August 14, 2016 Rigging the Coverage of Syria
The major U.S. news media has consistently slanted its coverage of the Syrian conflict to back neocon desires for more U.S. military intervention in support of "regime change," Gareth Porter wrote for FAIR.
(8 comments) SHARE Tuesday, December 27, 2016 Behind the real US strategic blunder in Syria
Secretary of State John Kerry put strong pressure on Obama to use military force against the Assad regime. That resulted in a public commitment by the Obama administration in June 2013 to provide military support to the opposition for the first time. The deepening commitment nearly led to a new US war against the Assad regime in September, after the chemical attack on the Damascus suburbs in August 2013.
(1 comments) SHARE Tuesday, June 7, 2011 Slain Writer's Book Says US-NATO War Served Al-Qaeda Strategy
Shahzad's book "Inside Al-Qaeda and the Taliban" was published on May 24 -- only three days before he went missing from Islamabad on his way to a television interview. His body was found May 31. He reveals that Osama bin Laden was a "figurehead" for public consumption, and that it was Dr. Ayman Zawahiri who formulated the organization's ideological line or devised operational plans.
(6 comments) SHARE Sunday, May 12, 2019 Bolton Is Spinning Israeli "Intelligence" to Push for War Against Iran
John Bolton has gotten away with a dangerous deception. The national security adviser's announcement Sunday that the Pentagon has deployed air and naval forces to the Middle East, which he combined with a threat to Iran, points to a new maneuver to prepare the ground for an incident that could justify a retaliatory attack against Iran.
(2 comments) SHARE Monday, January 23, 2017 How Clinton Defeat Derailed Syrian War
Hawkish think tanks had laid plans for escalating the U.S. "regime change" war in Syria after Hillary Clinton's expected election, but a different result has forced them to repackage their scheme, says Gareth Porter.
(1 comments) SHARE Sunday, September 2, 2012 IAEA Report Shows Iran Reduced Its Breakout Capacity
Media reports of a doubling of the number of centrifuges at the underground facility at Fordow were also misleading. When the information is examined more carefully, it actually provides further evidence that Iran is not striving to amass the higher level uranium needed for a breakout capability but is maneuvering to prepare for a later negotiated settlement.
(1 comments) SHARE Saturday, July 9, 2016 A New Fight Over Syria War Strategy
Obama's willingness to increase cooperation with the Russians is recognition that the continuing collaboration between Nusra and the so-called "moderates" represents an untenable situation if Syrian peace negotiations are to have any meaning. If the "moderates" don't separate from Nusra, they effectively serve as its protective shield.
SHARE Thursday, June 23, 2011 Obama Leaves Door Open to Long-Term U.S. Afghan Combat
Gates and Petraeus assumed that the military must have the flexibility to continue the military engagement in Afghanistan indefinitely in order to avoid a collapse of the US-NATO position and the Hamid Karzai regime. Even after 2014 was set as the date for completing combat operations, Gates and Petraeus regarded the withdrawal of US combat forces as only an "aspirational goal."
(1 comments) SHARE Thursday, June 30, 2016 The "Dissent" Memo That Isn't
The major U.S. media touts a State Department "dissent cable" urging military strikes on the Syrian military as a brave act by 51 diplomats, but it actually matches the views of Secretary Kerry and other top officials, notes Gareth Porter.
(2 comments) SHARE Tuesday, January 3, 2012 Obama Seeks to Distance U.S. from Israeli Attack
Netanyahu is exploiting the extraordinary influence his right-wing Likud Party exercises over the Republican Party and the U.S. Congress on matters related to Israel in order to maximize the likelihood that the United States would participate in an attack on Iran.
(1 comments) SHARE Saturday, August 6, 2016 Al Qaeda's Name Game in Syria
Washington's neocon-dominated foreign policy establishment has long seen Al Qaeda's Nusra Front as a strategic ally in Syria -- and now hopes a name change will protect it through President Obama's last months, reports Gareth Porter.
(2 comments) SHARE Monday, April 6, 2020 How Generals Fueled 1918 Flu Pandemic To Win Their World War
The lack of concern of Washington bureaucrats for the well-being of the troops, as they pursue their own war interests, appears to be a common pattern -- seen too, in the U.S. wars in Vietnam, Afghanistan and Iraq. Now it has been revealed once again in the stunningly callous response of the Pentagon to the coronavirus crisis.
(1 comments) SHARE Sunday, March 4, 2018 How "Operation Merlin" Poisoned U.S. Intelligence on Iran
Operation Merlin is the perfect example of powerful bureaucratic interests running amok and creating the intelligence necessary to justify their operations. The net result is that Jeffrey Sterling was unjustly imprisoned and that the United States has gone down a path of Iran policy that poses serious -- and unnecessary -- threats to American security.
(1 comments) SHARE Saturday, November 5, 2016 US hypocrisy: Bombing of Aleppo is no worse than what happened in Gaza and Iraq
As terrible as the toll of civilian lives is, the United States should drop the stance of moral superiority. When the US military invaded Iraq in 2003, it made no effort to keep track of how many civilians were killed in its bombing and artillery fire, claiming it had no way to tell who was civilian and who was not.
(6 comments) SHARE Monday, January 4, 2016 US military leadership resisted Obama's bid for regime change in Syria, Libya
the US military has a range of means by which it can oppose administration policies that it regards as unacceptable. But it also shows that the military leadership failed to alter the course of US policy, and raises the question whether it was willing to use all the means available to stop the funnelling of arms to al-Nusra Front and other extremist groups in Syria.
SHARE Saturday, October 18, 2014 A Mysterious Iran-Nuke Document
A mysterious document has been used for a half dozen years to derail nuclear talks with Iran, but its origins remain dubious and one expert says it's been used to take international inspectors "for a ride," as Gareth Porter reports for Inter Press Service.
SHARE Sunday, December 21, 2014 Ex-IAEA Chief Warns on Using Unverified Intel to Pressure Iran
Referring to the allegations of past Iranian nuclear weapons research that have been published in IAEA reports, Blix said, "Something that worries me is that these accusations that come from foreign intelligence agencies can be utilized by states to keep Iran under suspicion."
(3 comments) SHARE Wednesday, May 2, 2018 Did John Bolton Leak Intelligence to Sabotage a Trump-Kim Deal?
Donald Trump-Kim Jong Un summit offers opportunity for a denuclearization deal that would avoid a possible nuclear war, but that remains vulnerable to a hostile corporate media sector and political elites in the United States. At the center of this hostility is national security adviser John Bolton, who's not just uninterested in selling a denuclearization deal to the public. He's working actively to undermine it.
(1 comments) SHARE Wednesday, October 10, 2012 How Petraeus's Afghan "Surge" Failed
In 2009, Gen. David Petraeus insisted on a troop "surge" in Afghanistan like the one he had overseen in Iraq. Yet, despite the positive PR for Petraeus and his "surges," little was accomplished beyond putting more U.S. GIs within range of devastating IEDs.
(4 comments) SHARE Tuesday, November 15, 2016 The John Bolton threat to Trump's Middle East policy
Trump's choices of nominations for the top positions on national security will certainly be the crucial factor in determining what policy lines ultimately emerge on those issues -- and why the real possibility of Bolton's nomination as secretary of state now represents the greatest threat to international peace and security.
(1 comments) SHARE Saturday, February 21, 2015 The Obama-Netanyahu Showdown
President Obama has been reduced to asking Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu for permission to reach a nuclear deal with Iran, recognizing Netanyahu's power over the U.S. Congress. But Netanyahu's determination to block any deal has left Obama traversing a difficult negotiating path, writes Gareth Porter.
(2 comments) SHARE Saturday, July 25, 2015 Obama's line on the Iran nuclear deal: A second false narrative
Secretary Kerry and other Obama administration officials may have moderated their views of the Iran's nuclear program over the course of negotiations, but the external and domestic pressures for an even tougher line toward Iran have clearly outweighed any such learning process on the issue.
(1 comments) SHARE Sunday, March 18, 2018 South Korean Report on Summit Discredits U.S. Elites' Assumption
The pattern of U.S. policy is one side of the still-unknown story of the politics of the North Korean issue. The other side of the story is North Korea's effort to use its nuclear and missile assets as bargaining chips get the United States to strike a deal that would change the U.S. stance of enmity toward North Korea.
SHARE Saturday, June 20, 2015 Why the US military opposed new combat roles in Iraq
The question the military leaders have asked themselves is whether giving US troops and pilots more dangerous roles in the war against IS in Iraq is likely to generate more political support or have the opposite effect. Their pessimism on that question is based on the knowledge that such an escalation won't help defeat IS.
SHARE Wednesday, October 4, 2017 When Did Congress Vote to Aid the Saudi's Yemen War?
The bill introduced by a bipartisan group of House members last week to end the direct U.S. military role in the Saudi coalition war in Yemen guarantees that the House of Representatives will vote for the first time on the single most important element of U.S. involvement in the war -- the refueling of Saudi coalition planes systematically bombing Yemeni civilian targets.
(1 comments) SHARE Sunday, February 11, 2018 Can South Korea's Leader End Trump's North Korea Crisis?
The North-South talks that have begun will revolve around coming up with a formula for a deal on modifying the joint military exercises in return for a freeze on North Korean strategic weapons testing. The talks could take longer than the Olympics, which might require further postponement of the U.S.-ROK exercises that normally begin in March.
SHARE Sunday, July 5, 2015 US spin on access to Iranian sites has distorted the issue
the Obama administration's statements suggesting that the IAEA will have authority to visit any site they consider "suspect" is a politically convenient oversimplification. Under the technical annex to the Lausanne agreement that is now under negotiation, Iran would have the right to receive the evidence on which the IAEA is basing its request, according to Iranian officials.
SHARE Sunday, November 6, 2011 Debunking The Iran "Terror Plot"
The US tale of the Iranian plot was greeted with unusual skepticism on the part of Iran specialists and independent policy analysts, and even elements of the mainstream media. The critics observed that the alleged assassination scheme was not in Iran's interest, and that it bore scant resemblance to past operations attributed to the foreign special operations branch of Iranian intelligence.
(4 comments) SHARE Tuesday, November 20, 2012 Hyping Iran's Nuke Capabilities
As Iran and the Obama administration maneuver toward a deal on Iran's nuclear program, the Western news media continues to stoke the crisis by hyping Iran's capabilities, including misreporting the significance of a new report on Iran's supply of 20-percent enriched uranium, Gareth Porter writes at Inter Press Service.
(2 comments) SHARE Sunday, January 11, 2015 Four ways the West got the Iran nuclear issue wrong
For more than three decades, the United States and its European allies have committed one fundamental error after another in the process of creating a commonly held narrative that Iran was secretly pursuing a nuclear weapons program. The story of how suspicions of the Iranian program hardened into convictions is a cautionary tale of political and institutional interests.
(3 comments) SHARE Saturday, July 14, 2018 The Media's Brazen Dishonesty About North Korean Nuclear Violations
A media complex so determined to discredit negotiations with North Korea and so unfettered by political-diplomatic reality seriously threatens the ability of the United States to deliver on any agreement with Pyongyang. That means alternative media must make more aggressive efforts to challenge the corporate press's coverage.
SHARE Saturday, November 16, 2013 Lavrov Reveals Amended Draft Circulated at "Last Moment"
The Obama administration will face a decision whether to press Iran to go along with those changes or to go back to the original compromise when political directors of the six powers and Iran reconvene Nov. 20. That choice will provide the key indicator of how strongly committed Obama is to reaching an agreement with Iran.
(2 comments) SHARE Monday, June 5, 2017 The Kissinger Backchannel to Moscow
Major U.S. media outlets insinuate that President Trump's advisers are traitors for secretly talking to Russians, but they ignore the history of Henry Kissinger doing the same thing for Richard Nixon, writes Gareth Porter.
(6 comments) SHARE Tuesday, April 26, 2016 The classified "28 pages": A diversion from real US-Saudi issues
The controversy surrounding the infamous "28 pages" on the possible Saudi connection with the terrorists that were excised from the joint Congressional report on the 9/11 attacks is at fever pitch. But that controversy is a distraction from the real problems that Saudi Arabia's policies pose to the United States and the entire Middle East region.
(5 comments) SHARE Tuesday, February 9, 2016 US position on Syria tilts in favour of Russian intervention
Given the new military balance, the Obama administration now recognizes that its former strategy is now irrelevant. It has been supplanted with a new strategy that is equally opportunistic. The idea now is to take advantage of shared US-Russian strategic interests regarding ISIS -- and downgrade the objective of forcing a change in the Syrian regime.
SHARE Sunday, April 29, 2012 Understanding Iran's diplomatic strategy
The history of Iranian efforts to achieve a negotiated settlement supports Mousavian's warning. It is time for the United States to shed its shallow propagandistic view of Iranian strategy, and accept the necessity for real bargaining with Iran on fundamental issues.
(3 comments) SHARE Saturday, February 14, 2015 The real problem of "getting to yes" with Iran
Khamenei knows very well that this is the opportunity to play Iran's nuclear cards in order to get the sanctions removed. But the United States appears to be using its sanctions card to force Iran to accept a reduction of roughly 75 percent in its enrichment capacity and not even offering to lift all sanctions in the short run even if Iran caves in.
(1 comments) SHARE Wednesday, January 2, 2019 Is the End of the Brutal War in Yemen Finally at Hand?
The war's swift conclusion appears all but inevitable. While Crown Prince Mohammed may be committed to final victory, the Saudi regime remains heavily dependent on U.S. political-diplomatic cover, as it has since the beginning of the bombing campaign in Yemen. Ironically, that political reality could now tip the balance toward peace.
SHARE Monday, October 31, 2016 Justifying the Saudi Slaughter in Yemen
Official Washington insists Iran is the main Mideast troublemaker when clearly that isn't true, but the "group think" explains why a few intercepted arms shipments to Somalia where linked to Iran and Yemen, reports Gareth Porter.
(2 comments) SHARE Saturday, April 12, 2014 The Iranian Nuclear Weapons Program That Wasn't
The Obama administration's brazen suggestion that it was indicting an individual for exporting U.S. products to a company that has been involved in Iran's "nuclear weapons program" is simply a new version of the same linguistic trick used by the Bush administration.
(2 comments) SHARE Friday, January 13, 2017 Mainstream Media's Russian Bogeymen
The mainstream hysteria over Russia has led to dubious or downright false stories that have deepened the New Cold War, as Gareth Porter notes regarding last month's bogus tale of a hack into the U.S. electric grid.
(2 comments) SHARE Wednesday, February 13, 2019 The Real Motive Behind the FBI Plan to Investigate Trump as a Russian Agent - Consortiumnews
Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and senior FBI officials "viewed Trump as a leader who needed to be reined in, according to two sources describing the sentiment of the time."
That description by anti-Trump law enforcement officials suggests that the proposed counter-intelligence investigation of Trump served as a means to maintain some leverage over his treatment of the FBI in regard to the Russia issue.
(4 comments) SHARE Sunday, October 9, 2016 Obama's Syria policy and the illusion of US power in the Middle East
The Obama administration has allowed its policy in Syria to be determined primarily by the ambitions of its Sunni allies to overthrow Assad. The administration has claimed that it never favored the destruction of Syrian institutions, but that claim is contradicted by its acquiescence in the Sunni allies' support of Nusra Front.
(5 comments) SHARE Wednesday, August 28, 2013 Attack Syria First, Get Facts Later
Secretary of State Kerry's move to shut down or preempt a UN probe of alleged chemical weapons attacks inside Syria suggests that the U.S. doesn't want facts to undermine its case for launching a retaliatory strike, an attitude reminiscent of George W. Bush's behavior on Iraq.
(1 comments) SHARE Wednesday, August 6, 2014 How LBJ Was Deceived on Gulf of Tonkin
As war hawks today push President Obama into more and more confrontations, there is an echo from a half century ago when Vietnam War hawks manipulated President Johnson into a bombing campaign in retaliation for the phony Gulf of Tonkin incident, as Gareth Porter recalls.
(1 comments) SHARE Thursday, October 30, 2014 Russia's Key Role in Iran-Nuke Deal
Though the Ukraine crisis drove a wedge between Presidents Obama and Putin, their cooperation remains crucial to a negotiated agreement to constrain but not end Iran's nuclear program, as Gareth Porter makes clear in reporting on a possible breakthrough for Inter Press Service.
(1 comments) SHARE Wednesday, November 26, 2014 Squandering a Chance with Iran
Under pressure from hardliners in Congress and Israel, the Obama administration backed away from what could have been a historic agreement with Iran over limiting its nuclear program. Instead coercive diplomacy has become almost an end in itself, as Gareth Porter explains.
(1 comments) SHARE Thursday, September 24, 2015 Iran's Parchin nuclear myth begins to unravel
The politically charged tale of the bomb-test chamber of Parchin is beginning to unravel. IAEA director general Yukiya Amano entered the building in which the explosives chamber had supposedly been located on Monday and announced afterward that he found "no equipment" in the building.
(1 comments) SHARE Thursday, November 7, 2013 Drone Strike Served CIA Revenge, Blocked Pakistan's Strategy
Even though Obama was determined to phase out the drone war in Pakistan and apparently sympathized with the need for the Pakistani government to end it within a matter of months, he was unwilling to reject the CIA's demand for a strike that once again involved the agency's parochial interests.
(3 comments) SHARE Saturday, December 19, 2015 The Real Obstacle to Syrian Peace
Despite Russia and the U.S. coming together on Friday to back a U.N.-approved peace plan for Syria, major obstacles remain, including the on-the-ground reality that U.S. "allies," such as Saudi Arabia and Turkey, have armed and financed powerful jihadist forces that won't compromise, as Gareth Porter explains.
(2 comments) SHARE Sunday, January 26, 2014 U.S. "Dismantling" Rhetoric Ignores Iran's Nuclear Proposals
The Obama administration evidently views the rhetorical demand for "dismantling" as a minimum necessary response to Israel's position that the Iranian nuclear program should be shut down. But such rhetoric represents a serious provocation to a Tehran government facing accusations of surrender by its own domestic critics.
SHARE Wednesday, March 2, 2016 "Plan B" and the bankruptcy of US Syria policy
The "Plan B" episode is another moment in the pattern of failed US policy making on the Syrian crisis. It reveals a pattern of deep division over Syria in which key players seek to advance their own personal interests and the desire to maintain a US leadership role trumps the realities of the situation on the ground in Syria. If the US policy were a company doing business in Syria, it would have been bankrupt years ago.
(5 comments) SHARE Tuesday, March 15, 2016 Kerry Sought Missile Strikes to Force Syria's Assad to Step Down
The real origin of the present Syrian peace negotiations is Kerry's ambition to pursue the illusory aim of winning a diplomatic victory in Syria by much greater pressure on the Assad regime. Ironically, in setting in motion the military build-up of an al-Qaeda-dominated armed opposition, Kerry sowed the seeds of the military reversal that ensured the failure of his endeavor.
(1 comments) SHARE Wednesday, August 13, 2014 Giving Israel a Pass on Civilian Deaths
The Obama administration, which touts its "responsibility to protect" civilians when it wants to intervene somewhere in the world, went silent when Israel engaged in massive attacks on civilian targets in Gaza, killing hundreds of non-combatants including many children, notes Gareth Porter for Inter Press Service.
SHARE Monday, June 11, 2012 Iran Boosts Interest in Suspect Site
The U.S. press is playing up claims that Iran is "sanitizing" evidence of nuclear experiments at a military site, but experts say Iran knows nuclear residue can't be erased, suggesting the Iranians may be engaged in a negotiating ploy to boost the trade-off value of the site.
(1 comments) SHARE Wednesday, December 11, 2013 Neocons Twist Iran's Anti-Nuke Fatwa
Washington Post "fact checker" Glenn Kessler is infamous for palming off his political bias as a dispassionate look at the evidence, a trick that he tried again by promoting a neocon distortion of Iran's religious renunciation of nuclear weapons, as Gareth Porter explains.
SHARE Friday, April 20, 2012 Report on Iran's Nuclear Fatwa Distorts Its History
Obama administration officials have decided to cite the fatwa as an Iranian claim to be tested in negotiations, posing a new challenge to the news media to report accurately on the background to the issue. But the Apr. 13 New York Times article by James Risen rehashed old arguments by Iran's adversaries and even added some new ones.
(1 comments) SHARE Tuesday, February 16, 2016 Obama's "Moderate" Syrian Deception
President Obama, who once called the idea of "moderate" Syrian rebels a "fantasy," has maintained the fiction to conceal the fact that many "moderates" are fighting alongside Al Qaeda's jihadists, an inconvenient truth that is complicating an end to Syria's civil war, explains Gareth Porter.
(1 comments) SHARE Wednesday, September 26, 2012 Iran Reaffirms Offer on Nukes
In his swan song to the UN General Assembly, Iran's term-limited President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is stirring up the usual media outrage with remarks on gays, freedom of speech and Israel. But the West still ignores a substantive Iranian proposal on uranium enrichment, writes Gareth Porter at Inter Press Service.
SHARE Monday, February 6, 2012 A Dangerous Game on Iran
The Obama administration is engaged in complex diplomacy over Israel's possible attack on Iran, trying simultaneously to restrain Israel and use its military threat to pressure Iran on its nuclear program. But some maneuvers may work at cross purposes.
(4 comments) SHARE Wednesday, July 15, 2015 How a weaker Iran got the hegemon to lift sanctions
The main back story of the nuclear agreement is that it was Iranian counter-pressure on the United States through its nuclear program that finally compelled the Obama administration to change its strategy of relying mainly on coercion and begin the negotiations that Iran had wanted for more than two decades.
SHARE Wednesday, November 4, 2015 The New Yorker Doesn't Fact Check What "Everyone Knows" Is True
This is to direct attention to much more bigger and more complex problem affecting the entire news media structure: a climate of opinion in which certain issues are matters of such solid consensus that normally alert and energetic journalists suspend their skepticism and fact checking, because, after all, "everybody knows" that certain propositions are true.
(3 comments) SHARE Monday, March 31, 2014 A Poison Pill for Iran Nuke Talks
Israel and its hardline U.S. backers have tried to manipulate the UN’s IAEA to ensure failure of negotiations aimed at constraining but not eliminating Iran’s nuclear program. The new ploy is to sink the talks with a demand for an Iranian “confession,” as Gareth Porter wrote for Inter Press Service.
(1 comments) SHARE Wednesday, September 9, 2015 Why the US and Iran aren't cooperating against IS
While Iran acknowledges the need for a change in US-Iran relations to ease regional security threats, the United States has not made a move toward any such acknowledgment. US policy toward the Middle East has long been defined primarily not by threats originating in the region but by much more potent domestic political interests, both electoral and bureaucratic.
(1 comments) SHARE Friday, February 4, 2011 US-Israeli Strategy Crashes in Egypt
Unconditional support for Israel, the search for client states and determination to project military power into the Middle East, which are central to the failed strategy, have long reflected the interests of the two most powerful domestic U.S. political power blocs bearing on national security policy: the pro-Israel bloc and the militarist bloc.
SHARE Saturday, January 17, 2015 Local Syria ceasefires: The way out of a US policy dead end?
Even if the Obama administration recognizes the advantages of the proposal of the local ceasefire approach for Syria, it cannot be assumed that it will actually carry out the policy. The reason is the heavy influence of its relations with its main regional allies on Washington. Israel, Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Qatar would all reject a policy that would allow a regime they regard as an Iranian ally to persist in Syria.
SHARE Wednesday, June 6, 2012 Bush Blocked Iran Nuke Deal
A former top Iranian negotiator says Iran offered the West a deal in 2005 that would have eliminated the possibility of Iran developing a nuclear bomb, but the plan was blocked by hardliners in George W. Bush's administration who rejected any right of Iran to process uranium.
(4 comments) SHARE Tuesday, February 14, 2012 Can Obama avert war with Iran?
There is still time for Obama to repair the damage and to return to the policy he had begun developing in December. But unless Obama warns Netanyahu publicly that an attack against US wishes would indeed mean he is on his own, the chances of deterring him and avoiding war with Iran will be sharply reduced.
SHARE Tuesday, February 3, 2015 The Israel Lobby Shows Its Clout
House Speaker Boehner's unprecedented invitation to give Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu a platform of a joint session of Congress to undercut President Obama's foreign policy is just the latest example of how much power the Israel lobby wields, as Gareth Porter explains.
SHARE Sunday, July 12, 2015 US Slowdown on Iran Talks has Dark Side
The implications of the deliberate Obama administration decision to postpone any agreement to blunt domestic criticism from the right and, apparently, to try to wrest more diplomatic leverage in doing so, are far-reaching and very serious. Obama will presumably complete the negotiations soon as a clear triumph over Iran achieved by its tough negotiating stance -- even though that line will be the opposite of the truth.
SHARE Tuesday, May 20, 2014 Why Iran Wants Its Own Nuclear Fuel
Iran's insistence on having its own capability to enrich uranium for its nuclear reactors stems from its bitter experience when forced to rely on outside suppliers that were susceptible to international political pressures, Gareth Porter reports for Inter Press Service.
SHARE Thursday, May 3, 2012 The Secret in the US-Afghan Deal
The secret of President Obama's strategic agreement with Afghan President Karzai is that U.S. Special Forces will continue raids to kill Taliban leaders who won't make peace -- even as the new accord is sold to the American public as an end game to the long war.
(1 comments) SHARE Saturday, February 7, 2015 A Rush to Judgment in Argentine Bomb Case?
The mysterious death of an Argentine prosecutor has whipped up new suspicions around the case of who bombed the Asociación Mutual Israelita Argentina (AMIA) in 1994 and whether there was an official cover-up, but the evidence on both counts remains dubious or discredited, says Gareth Porter.
SHARE Sunday, December 6, 2020 Painting Fakrhizadeh as a Nuclear Mastermind
Israel's Mossad intelligence agency eliminated Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, a defense official, despite the knowledge that its public depiction of him as the key architect of an Iranian nuclear weapons program was a deception.
(2 comments) SHARE Friday, May 11, 2012 Bin Laden Files Dispel Iran-Qaeda Link
To build support for "regime change" in Iran, neocon operatives and U.S. officials have tried to link al-Qaeda to Iran by exaggerating intelligence and ignoring evidence of mutual hostility, including new data in Osama bin Laden's captured files.
(1 comments) SHARE Tuesday, October 28, 2014 Resolving Key Nuclear Issue Turns on Iran-Russia Deal
On Sep. 19, one week after the Rouhani-Putin meeting, the Associated Press reported that a new U.S. proposal involving a trade-off between reducing the LEU stockpile and the size of the cut in centrifuges had been discussed in bilateral talks between the United States and Iran. Iran was reported to have been "cautiously receptive."
SHARE Friday, December 26, 2014 New Pressure to Stop Iran Nuke Accord
The economic pain, being inflicted on Iran and Russia by the Saudi-induced oil-price drop, has fueled a new surge in Official Washington's "tough-guy-ism" and thus may hurt chances for successful negotiations, especially an agreement to constrain Iran's nuclear program, as Gareth Porter reports.
SHARE Friday, August 14, 2015 Obama's Stupid Blame-Iran Game
President Obama always bows to Official Washington's conventional wisdom no matter how wrongheaded it is -- and then either falls in line behind some reckless neocon policy prescription or turns away just before falling off some geopolitical cliff. His continued Iran-bashing is a case in point, says Gareth Porter at Middle East Eye.
(1 comments) SHARE Tuesday, July 3, 2012 New Israeli Leader Balks on Iran
Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has kept President Obama behind a hard-line strategy on Iran's nuclear program via lobbying pressure from Congress and Washington's neocons. But a new member of the Israeli government is complicating matters, writes Gareth Porter for Inter Press Service.
SHARE Monday, December 8, 2014 Why Hasn't the IAEA Followed Up Iran's Inspection Offer?
The IAEA certainly had access to satellite images for the entire Marivan region, and would have searched through those images for any site that looked like it could be the location of the purported high explosives experiment. Apparently, it did not find a specific location that seemed plausible.
(2 comments) SHARE Monday, March 21, 2016 Obama's Break with the Establishment
President Obama, with his characteristic diffidence, has announced his "liberation" from the Washington foreign-policy "playbook," but the national security elite is already striking back, writes Gareth Porter.
(2 comments) SHARE Thursday, February 6, 2014 How Misread Cables Fed Iran Hysteria
Official Washington saw how bad intelligence led to the disastrous Iraq War, but U.S. analysts and “experts” like David Albright charged down the same path on Iran’s alleged nuclear program. Again, key ”evidence” collapsed under scrutiny, Gareth Porter wrote for Inter Press Service.
(1 comments) SHARE Thursday, September 1, 2016 The real US Syria scandal: Supporting sectarian war
Could senior Obama administration officials have been unaware that a war to overthrow Assad would inevitably become an enormous sectarian bloodbath? By August 2012 a US Defense Intelligence Agency report intelligence warned that "events are taking a clear sectarian direction," and that the "the "Salafist[s], Muslim Brotherhood and AQI [al-Qaeda in Iraq]" were "the major forces driving the insurgency."
SHARE Thursday, March 17, 2011 U.N. Reported Only a Fraction of Civilian Deaths from U.S. Raids
WASHINGTON/KABUL, Mar 17, 2011 (IPS) - The number of civilians killed in U.S. Special Operations Forces (SOF) raids last year was probably several times higher than the figure of 80 people cited in the U.N. report on civilian casualties in Afghanistan published last week, an IPS investigation has revealed.
SHARE Sunday, November 20, 2011 Ex-Inspector Rejects IAEA Iran Bomb Test Chamber Claim
A former inspector for the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has repudiated its major new claim that Iran built an explosives chamber to test components of a nuclear weapon and carry out a simulated nuclear explosion.
SHARE Saturday, October 12, 2013 Israeli Claim of Iranian ICBM Exploits Biased U.S. Intel
Iran had a good strategic reason for its disinterest in an ICBM, according to a team of U.S. and Russian specialists in May 2009. Iran would have to use rocket motor clusters,and longer-range missiles based on that technology would have to be launched from above ground. It would take days to prepare for launch and hours to fuel -- all of which would be clearly visible to spy satellites, according to the team.
SHARE Thursday, March 24, 2016 US Media Hid Al Qaeda's Syria Role
When Russian airstrikes began in Syria, the U.S. media falsely claimed President Putin had promised to hit only ISIS and instead attacked "moderate" rebels, but the dirty secret was that those rebels were working with Al Qaeda, writes Gareth Porter.
SHARE Wednesday, September 10, 2014 Israel Cited Hamas Rocket Fire as Excuse
Israeli destruction of Gaza's civilian infrastructure, including schools and hospitals, is getting a pass from Official Washington because Israel asserts Hamas fired rockets from near the sites, but a close examination of those claims reveals a different reality, writes Gareth Porter for Inter Press Service.
SHARE Monday, July 27, 2015 Obama Buys False Iran Narrative
President Obama has fallen into the habit of accepting whatever "group think" is prevalent in Official Washington, which often falsely accuses some "enemy" of a nefarious deed, but Obama then tries to dodge the desired reaction: war. This risky pattern is playing out again over Iran, writes Gareth Porter.
SHARE Saturday, March 11, 2017 A Flawed UN Investigation on Syria
U.N. investigators increasingly make their conclusions fall in line with Western propaganda, especially on the war in Syria, as occurred in a distorted report about last year's attack on an aid convoy, explains Gareth Porter.
(1 comments) SHARE Tuesday, February 8, 2011 US Spurned Taliban Peace Feelers
The entire senior Taliban leadership, meeting in Karachi, "agreed in principle to find a way for them to return to Afghanistan and abandon the fight," journalist Anand Gopal wrote, but the initiative was frustrated by the unwillingness of the United States and the Afghan government to provide any assurance that they would not be arrested and detained.
SHARE Thursday, February 17, 2011 Short-Counting the Taliban
Petraeus appears to have invoked the privilege of the military commander to avert the potential "political bombshell" of an estimate that would almost certainly have shown a large increase in the number of armed insurgents in Afghanistan.
SHARE Monday, March 28, 2016 How Putin's leverage shaped the Syrian ceasefire
Coming after a demonstration of the effectiveness of Russian airpower in frustrating the 2015 's jihadist-led offensive, Putin's seizing the opportunity to nail down the agreement with Washington and then pulling out most of his airpower conveyed a message to the jihadist's external patrons that it was in their interests not to restart the war.
(1 comments) SHARE Thursday, January 26, 2012 US probe hardens Pakistani suspicions
Air Force Brigadier General Steven Clark recalled in his press briefing on the report on December 22 that the Pakistani liaison officer had been asked where the border posts were located, and had not given the coordinates, but had responded, "Well, you know where it is because you're shooting at them."
(1 comments) SHARE Saturday, May 17, 2014 Trying to Scuttle Iran Nuke Talks, Again
Official Washington's hardliners are back at it, pushing unrealistic demands about Iran's nuclear program to ensure that a comprehensive agreement is scuttled and the military option is put back on the table, as Gareth Porter explains at Inter Press Service.
(1 comments) SHARE Friday, January 29, 2016 Obama's Iranian Missile Sanctions Were Deceptive and Hypocritical
The Obama's official line is a way of justifying the continuation of the U.S. denunciation of the Iranian missile program, which is demanded by domestic politics and U.S. alliances with Israel and Saudi Arabia -- even in the wake of the nuclear deal with Iran. It is only realistic to expect, therefore, U.S. policy on that subject to be marked by hypocrisy and duplicity for years to come.
SHARE Saturday, December 18, 2010 Gains in Kandahar Came with More Brutal U.S. Tactics
The Barack Obama administration's claim of "progress" in its war strategy is based on the military seizure of three rural districts outside Kandahar City in October.
But those tactical gains have come at the price of further exacerbating the basic U.S. strategic weakness in Afghanistan -" the antagonism toward the foreign presence shared throughout the Pashtun south.
SHARE Saturday, August 3, 2013 Fresh Doubts on Iran's Nuke Program
Though Israeli leaders and U.S. neocons still beat the drum for war on Iran, new evidence suggests top Iranian officials did not sanction nuclear weapons research a decade ago but rather the work originated from scientists who resisted the will of political leaders to shut it down.
(1 comments) SHARE Thursday, August 18, 2011 Pakistan Demands Veto on Drone Strikes
The U.S. commando raid that killed Osama bin Laden on May 2 aroused anger in Pakistan over unilateral American military actions. But bilateral tensions have been growing for years over U.S. drone strikes against Pakistani targets -- and have now reached a crisis stage.
(2 comments) SHARE Sunday, March 2, 2014 Resolving Nuclear Arms Claims Hinges on Iran’s Demand for Documents
The record of negotiations between Iran and the IAEA shows Tehran has been ready for the past two years to provide detailed responses to all the charges of an Iranian nuclear weapons work, and that the problem has been the refusal of the IAEA to share with Iran the documentary evidence on which those allegations have been based.
SHARE Saturday, October 26, 2013 Geopolitics of the Drone
The U.S. drone program has decimated the leadership of al-Qaeda and other Islamic militant groups, but it also has alienated people and governments in countries on the front lines by killing civilians and disrupting political alliances, a complexity often missed by the U.S. media, as Gareth Porter reported for Inter Press Service.
(1 comments) SHARE Monday, June 13, 2011 90% of Petraeus's Captured "Taliban' Were Civilians
Petraeus made sure the impact of the new SOF narrative would be maximized by presenting the total of Afghans swept up in SOF raids as actual Taliban fighters. The deceptive nature of those statistics, as now revealed by U.S. military data, raises anew the question of whether the statistics released by Petraeus on killing of alleged Taliban were similarly skewed.
(3 comments) SHARE Wednesday, May 7, 2014 U.N. Probe Chief Doubtful on Syria Sarin Exposure Claims
That the overwhelming majority in the sample had very little or no exposure to Sarin was particularly significant, because those in the sample had been chosen by local opposition authorities as being among the most serious affected survivors. The data suggest that the Syrian opposition and its external supporters had vastly exaggerated the scope and severity of the attack.
SHARE Thursday, December 23, 2010 US Stepping Up Pressure on Pakistan
The position of the Barack Obama administration on the necessity of attacking insurgent safe havens in Pakistan appears to be in line with the proposal for cross-border raids. Carrying out such raids would probably provoke a new level of anti-U.S. sentiment in Pakistan, with dangerous political consequences in that country.
SHARE Wednesday, November 9, 2011 Iran's Soviet Bomb-Maker Who Wasn't
Careful examination of the "alleged studies" documents has revealed inconsistencies and other anomalies that give evidence of fraud. But the IAEA, the United States and its allies in the IAEA, continue to treat the documents as though there were no question about their authenticity.
(1 comments) SHARE Tuesday, September 27, 2011 US Losing Sway in Af-Pak Region
Obama administration officials have been talking tough about Pakistan and its alleged support to militants who have crossed into Afghanistan to attack U.S. forces. But the reality is that Washington has little leverage left after a decade of failed wars.
(6 comments) SHARE Thursday, November 3, 2011 ISAF Data Show Night Raids Killed Over 1,500 Afghan Civilians
SOF commanders have begun consciously targeting individuals who were not believed to be insurgents but who were believed to have provided moral or material support, or to have intelligence information about them. But night raids clearly remain the overwhelmingly primary -- though still unacknowledged -- cause of civilian deaths in the war.
(1 comments) SHARE Wednesday, May 25, 2011 Obama's Covert Clash with Pakistan
U.S. intelligence analysts have concluded that American success in the Afghan War requires Pakistani help in rooting out Taliban safe havens along the border but that Pakistan is unwilling to turn against its longtime Taliban allies -- a conundrum that continues to bedevil the Obama administration and U.S. military commanders.
SHARE Sunday, July 1, 2012 New Israeli Deputy PM Undercuts Strategy of Pressure on Obama
By staking out a policy line on Iran reflecting the views of the Israeli national security leadership, Deputy Prime Minister Shaul Mofaz has undercut the Benjamin Netanyahu government's carefully planned strategy to get U.S. President Barack Obama to threaten war against Iran if it doesn't give up its nuclear program.
SHARE Sunday, November 22, 2015 How terror in Paris calls for revising US Syria policy
Unless Obama is prepared to face a rupture in the US alliance with the Sunni Gulf Sheikdoms over the issue, the result will be that the very groups committed to overthrowing the remnants of the old order by force will be invited by the United States and its Gulf allies to take key positions in the post-Assad government.
SHARE Sunday, January 9, 2011 How Afghanistan Became a War for NATO
Canadian General Rick Hillier, who commanded NATO forces in Afghanistan from February to August 2004, wrote that NATO was an unmitigated disaster in Afghanistan. "Afghanistan has revealed," wrote Hiller, "that NATO has reached the stage where it is a corpse decomposing..."
SHARE Saturday, May 14, 2016 Political Pressure Stymies US-Iran Ties
With the Iran nuclear agreement, President Obama opened lines of communications to Iran, but political pressures in Washington prevent a more substantive shift in relations, reports Gareth Porter.
SHARE Thursday, October 1, 2015 Rouhani's dual messages and Iran's security strategy
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani's address at the UN General Assembly and a talk the previous night to about 150 Americans touted the recent nuclear breakthrough as a precedent for further diplomatic accommodation with the United States. His dual message of diplomatic engagement with Washington and insistence that cooperation on resisting "Daesh" is the priority in Syria reflect the essentials of Iran's national security.
(1 comments) SHARE Thursday, August 8, 2013 Pinning Argentine Bombing on Iran
"Defectors" are among the most unreliable intelligence sources since they have an obvious motive for discrediting their former governments, but still have been allowed outsized roles in whipping up hysteria against Iraq in 2003 and now against Iran.
SHARE Tuesday, January 17, 2012 In Signal to Israel, US Delays War Games
The idea that the Israelis wanted the postponement appears to be a cover story to mask the political blow it represents to the Netanyahu government and to shield Obama from Republican charges that he is not sufficiently supportive of Israel.
SHARE Sunday, June 22, 2014 Iran Answers Questions on Explosives
To get elected chief of the International Atomic Energy Agency in 2009, Yukiya Amano agreed to carry water for the U.S. on the Iranian nuclear issue, a chore that he is continuing in a dispute over Iran's work on detonators, as Gareth Porter explains for Inter Press Service.
SHARE Thursday, February 21, 2013 Bulgaria's Hezbollah "Hypothesis" And The EU Terror List
The US and Israel continue a pattern of ignoring the actual evidence in high-profile terrorism cases in order to advance their political interests in relation to Iran and Hezbollah. That pattern was established nearly two decades ago with the US-Israeli pressure on Argentina to finger Iran in the 1994 AMIA bombing despite the absence of any evidence for such an accusation.
SHARE Friday, April 13, 2012 Iran Talks Hinge on Israeli Demand
As international talks begin over Iran's nuclear program, President Obama has put forward an Israeli demand for the dismantling of a well-protected uranium processing plant, but it's less clear whether Obama will press the point if it means killing hopes for a peaceful settlement.
SHARE Thursday, February 23, 2012 Tempest over an Iran Military Site
Iran's refusal to grant U.N. inspectors access to the Parchin military facility is churning up new suspicions about a concealed nuclear weapons program, but the impasse can be explained as the frustration by Iran over how previous inspections of the site have been treated.
(1 comments) SHARE Wednesday, July 2, 2014 U.S. Demand for Deep Centrifuge Cut Is a Diplomatic Ploy
With only a few weeks remaining before the Jul. 20 deadline, the Barack Obama administration issued a warning to Iran that it must accept deep cuts in the number of its centrifuges in order to demonstrate that its nuclear program is only for peaceful purposes.
(1 comments) SHARE Tuesday, March 29, 2011 Long-term Afghan Presence Likely to Derail Peace Talks
The announcement by U.S. Deputy Undersecretary of Defence Michele Flournoy in Congressional testimony Mar. 15 that the United States would continue to carry out "counter-terrorism operations" from "joint bases" in Afghanistan well beyond 2014 signaled that President Barack Obama has given up the negotiating flexibility he would need to be able to reach a peace agreement with the Taliban leadership.
SHARE Thursday, September 15, 2011 Taliban Narrative in Afghan War
Holdovers from the Bush administration helped sell President Barack Obama on a "surge" for Afghanistan, arguing that a counterinsurgency strategy could still work. However, two years later, the Taliban continues high-profile attacks almost anywhere in the country.
SHARE Wednesday, March 21, 2012 Details of Talks with IAEA Belie Charge Iran Refused Cooperation
The detailed account given by Iran's permanent representative to the IAEA, Ali Asghar Soltanieh, shows that the talks in February came close to a final agreement, but were hung up primarily over the IAEA insistence on being able to reopen issues even after Iran had answered questions about them to the organization's satisfaction.
SHARE Monday, January 18, 2016 Iran Changes the Regional Dynamic
Israel and -- to a lesser extent -- Saudi Arabia continue to dictate much of U.S. foreign policy in the Mideast, especially animosity toward Iran. But the Iran nuclear deal may change the dynamic toward a more balanced strategy at least in the long term if not the short, as Gareth Porter explains.
SHARE Friday, June 13, 2014 Iran Offers Scaled-Back Nuke Program
To seal a deal with world powers, Iran has agreed to structure its nuclear enrichment in ways only useful for generating electricity, but that still might not satisfy U.S. negotiators, writes Gareth Porter from Tehran for Inter Press Service.
SHARE Monday, February 18, 2013 Hezbollah Link to Bombing Doubted
In assessing murky terrorism cases in the Middle East, one must take into account the political pressures on investigators and journalists to push the conclusion in a favored direction. That truism has surfaced again in a bombing at the Bulgarian resort of Burgas.
SHARE Wednesday, February 27, 2013 Challenging the Neocons on Iran
Despite the Iraq debacle, neocons remain in the driver's seat setting official U.S. attitudes toward Iran, mixing worst-case assumptions with unrelenting hostility. But national security experts Flynt and Hillary Mann Leverett have stood up to this neocon-driven conventional wisdom.
SHARE Monday, May 9, 2011 After Bin Laden Hit, U.S. Aides Raise Dubious Hopes for Peace
The new narrative portrays the Obama administration as sharply divided between military and Pentagon leaders who want to maximize the number of troops in Afghanistan for as long as possible and some civilian advisers who want a much bigger and faster draw-down.
SHARE Tuesday, January 4, 2011 How Afghanistan became a NATO war
NATO was given a central role in Afghanistan because of the influence of US officials concerned with the alliance, according to a US military officer who was in a position to observe the decision-making process.
"NATO's role in Afghanistan is more about NATO than it is about Afghanistan," said an officer, who insisted on anonymity.
SHARE Monday, May 14, 2012 Adding Hurdles for Iran to Clear
The current head of the International Atomic Energy Agency, who was essentially installed by Western powers, is adding new hurdles for Iran to clear before an agreement can be reached on its nuclear program.
SHARE Friday, July 18, 2014 Zarif and Kerry Signal Momentum on Nuclear Pact
Once the difference between the proposed duration of the two sides has been reduced to a very few years, both sides may well conclude that the difference is not important enough to sacrifice the advantages of reaching agreement.
SHARE Saturday, July 12, 2014 Khamenei Remarks Show Both Sides Maneuvre on Enrichment
Secretary of State John Kerry had said in April that the U.S. intention was to demand very deep cuts in Iran's enrichment capability, arguing it was necessary to lengthen the time it would take Iran to turn its uranium enriched to 3.5 percent into enough weapons grade uranium for a single bomb to six to 12 months.
(2 comments) SHARE Thursday, December 13, 2012 Iranian Bomb Graph Appears Adapted from One on Internet
The IAEA's familiarity with the Seifritz graph, two years before it was given graphs that bore a close resemblance to it and which the agency knew contained a huge mathematical error, raise new questions about how the IAEA could have regarded the Israeli intelligence as credible evidence of Iranian work on nuclear weapons.
SHARE Monday, September 9, 2013 CORRECTED REPEAT -- Obama's Case for Syria Didn't Reflect Intel Consensus
Despite strong opposition in Congress to the proposed military strike in Syria, no one in either chamber has yet challenged the administration's characterization of the intelligence. But the administration is vulnerable to the charge that it has put out an intelligence document that does not fully and accurately reflect the views of intelligence analysts.
SHARE Tuesday, October 30, 2012 Pentagon Nixed 1998 U.S. Nuclear Scientists' Probe of Iranian Program
In 1998, the Defence Department vetoed a delegation of prominent U.S. nuclear specialists to go to Iran to investigate its nuclear program at the invitation of the government of newly-elected Iranian President Mohammad Khatami. The veto eliminated the Khatami government's most promising initiative to promote a thaw in U.S.-Iran relations by weakening a key U.S. argument for viewing Iran as a threat.
SHARE Wednesday, August 29, 2012 Gaps in India's "Iran" bomb case
The questionable character of the police case that the four Iranians conspired on the Delhi bombing does not rule out the possibility that it was an Iranian government operation, but it does indicate that SC investigators could not find convincing evidence of such an Iranian role.
SHARE Tuesday, April 3, 2012 Is Bibi Bluffing on Iran?
The widespread impression among the Israeli national security elite and press corps that Netanyahu's threat of war against Iran is a bluff does not guarantee that Netanyahu will not attack Iran. But it does help explain why there has not been a much bigger outcry against a war option that is widely regarded as irrational for Israel.
SHARE Tuesday, March 13, 2012 Alleged Photos of "Clean-up" at Iran's Parchin Site Lack Credibility
The story about satellite photographs suggesting efforts by Iran to "sanitize" a military site is suspect, in part because it is based on evidence that could only be ambiguous, at best. The claim does not reflect U.S. intelligence, and a prominent think tank that has published satellite photography related to past controversies surrounding Iran's nuclear program has not found any photographs supporting it.
SHARE Monday, May 6, 2019 Mueller Stoked Trump-Russia Alarmism, Despite Finding No Collusion
The Mueller report doesn't show the Trump campaign collusion the public had been led by media coverage to expect. But it is a siren song for a continued focus on the supposed threat to U.S. democracy from Russian "meddling". It is aimed at maintaining public support for a focus on the threat from Russia, which diverts the attention of the media and Congress from real threats to democracy from Trump's domestic agenda.
SHARE Wednesday, September 21, 2011 New Study Says U.S. Night Raids Aimed at Afghan Civilians
A military officer who had approved night raids told one of the authors that targeting individuals believed to know one of the insurgents is a key factor in planning the raids. "If you can't get the guy you want," said the officer, "you get the guy who knows him."
SHARE Sunday, February 17, 2013 Bulgarian Revelations Explode Hezbollah Bombing "Hypothesis"
European ministers who demand hard evidence of Hezbollah involvement are not likely to find it in the Bulgarian report on the investigation, which has produced no more than an "assumption" or "hypothesis" of Hezbollah complicity.
Major revelations about the investigation by the former head of the probe and by a top Bulgarian journalist have further damaged the credibility of the Bulgarian claim to have found links...
SHARE Wednesday, July 25, 2012 Israel Pins Bombing on Hezbollah to Get EU Terror Ruling
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's claim Sunday of absolutely reliable intelligence linking Hezbollah to the bombing in Burgas, Bulgaria last week was apparently aimed at supporting his government's determination to get the EU to declare Hezbollah a terrorist organisation.
SHARE Monday, March 11, 2013 Hagel Struggles to Calm Afghan Dispute
U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel traveled to Afghanistan seeking to reduce tensions between the Afghan government and U.S. Special Forces who face allegations of supporting armed men accused of abusing civilians.
(1 comments) SHARE Wednesday, February 22, 2012 "Night Raids' Stall Afghan War Talks
The Obama administration's hopes for a negotiated end to the Afghan War are hung up on a dispute with the Karzai government over the future use of night raids by U.S. Special Forces, a tactic very unpopular with Afghans.
SHARE Thursday, March 1, 2012 US Media Hypes Iran Inspection Flap
Major U.S. news outlets spin any event regarding Iran's nuclear program in the most negative way, now hyping a dispute about conditions for visiting a military site as supposed proof that Iran has something to hide. But the media is missing key nuances.