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OpEdNews Op Eds    H2'ed 4/16/12

Iran's Phantom Menace

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This article cross-posted from Consortium News

porgy-and-bess Scene from "Porgy and Bess" on Broadway

Last Thursday, I took part in a panel discussion on "Targeting Iran: Sanctions and War" at California State University, Fresno. The panel discussion took place against the backdrop of all-too-familiar warnings to Iran that it has one "last chance" to stop doing what the CIA and pretty much all serious intelligence agencies say it is not doing -- namely, working on a nuclear weapon.

That's right; one "last chance" to stop doing what it is NOT doing. This unconscionably surreal -- and transparently provocative -- demand threatened to cast an unrelenting pall over the event, so I made a lame attempt to inject some light humor in order to head off confusion and despair.

Since the West's rhetoric about Iran virtually cries out for parody -- not to mention correction -- I decided to begin my short presentation with an adaptation of "It Ain't Necessarily So" from Porgy and Bess.

First, I needed to expose non-Gershwin fans to the song's tune and cadence, so I began with one of the original verses and asked the audience to sing along. (You may wish to do likewise):

Oh Jonah he lived in de whale,

Oh Jonah he lived in de whale.

Fo' he made his home in

Dat fish's abdomen,

Oh Jonah he lived in de whale.

Well, it ain't necessarily so;

Well, it ain't necessarily so.

Fo' he made his home in          

Dat fish's abdomen,

But that ain't necessarily so.

After that warm-up came the unveiling of three Iran-related verses composed earlier that day during the long drive from the Bay area to Fresno. (Please do sing along):

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Ray McGovern works with Tell the Word, the publishing arm of the ecumenical Church of the Saviour in inner-city Washington. He was an Army infantry/intelligence officer and then a CIA analyst for 27 years, and is now on the Steering Group of Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS). His (more...)
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