Fact Sheets: The Threat from Iran

Facts feature (06)

Iran is one of the foremost, self-proclaimed enemies of the West and one of the most serious threats to stability in the Middle East.

The Iranian government’s extreme interpretation of Islamic law, and its anti-Western philosophy, inspires the rise of Islamic extremists across the world. Iran is also one of the principal state sponsors of terror, proudly delivering weapons to Hezbollah and Palestinian terrorists and providing safe haven for many international terrorists, including senior al-Qaeda leaders. Moreover, Iranian agents have acted to perpetrate anti-Western and anti-Israel terrorist attacks in more than 20 countries around the world.  Iran has been implicated in the July 2012 bombing in Bulgaria that killed 5 Israeli’s, the February 2012 attacks on Israeli representatives in Georgia and India, the failed strikes in Thailand and Azerbaijan against Jewish targets, and the foiled attempt to assassinate Saudi Arabia’s ambassador to the U.S. in October 2011.  Israel’s Mossad security service also noted that Iran was behind foiled plots to attack Jewish and Israeli targets in Kenya and Cyprus as well.

But above all these concerns, the most menacing threat Iran poses to international security is its harnessing of nuclear energy for the purpose of developing a nuclear bomb.

In 2005, Iran made its first advance in the production of enriched uranium and subsequently established a secret nuclear research center to train scientists in all aspects of atomic technology. In August 2013, outgoing Iranian nuclear chief Fereydoun Abbasi-Davani proclaimed that Iran has amassed some 18,000 functioning centrifuges, a number mostly corroborated by a May 2013 IAEA report which indicated Iran had installed roughly 16,600 centrifuges in two main facilities. The Islamic Republic continues to streamline the uranium enrichment process so that they can convert their more than 6,000 kilograms of low-enriched fissile material into high-grade, weapons-ready material. Analysts believe it could take Iran anywhere from a number of weeks to nine months – from the moment an order is given – to assemble an explosive device and reduce it to the dimensions of a missile payload.

Iran also continues to develop its arsenal of long range missiles.  It already has weapons capable of reaching Israel, parts of Eastern and Southern Europe, the Arabian peninsula, and American bases in the Middle East. In July 2012, a report released by the US government and signed by US Defense Secretary Leon Panetta showed evidence that Iran is continually boosting the accuracy and lethality of its existing missile systems.  These improvements are in tandem with regular ballistic-missile training that “continues throughout the country” and the addition of “new ships and submarines,” the report found. Intelligence reports from 2013 estimate that Iran may be technically capable of flight-testing an intercontinental ballistic missile by 2015.

There is little disagreement as to the intentions of the Iranians.

Already since the release of its November 2011 report, the IAEA had confirmed that Iran is developing nuclear weapons and reiterated the need to address this situation as soon as possible. At the time, Director General Yukiya Amano said, “It is my responsibility to alert the world. From the indicators I had, I draw the conclusion that it is time to call the world’s attention to this risk.”

The question has now become how to respond.

As U.S. President Barack Obama noted, the threat from a nuclear Iran affects not just “one country’s interests or two countries’ interests … [but] the entire internatioanl community,” and therefore cooperative international measures must be taken to stop Iran’s progress.

In the United States, President Obama has imposed sanctions against companies doing business with Iran, the Treasury Department has worked to freeze Iranian financial assets and new measures have been passed by Congress to halt transactions with Iran’s Central Bank. Obama’s administration has also made clear they will not accept containment of a nuclear Iran and have drawn red lines for possible military intervention. “The United States does not have a policy of contaiment when it comes to a nuclear Iran. Our policy is to prevent Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon,” President Obama noted in March 2013. “And I will repeat: All options are on the table.”

In Europe, a new sense of urgency over halting Iran’s nuclear program has taken hold since military analysts, such as Maj. Gen. Vladimir Dvorkin of the Center for Strategic Nuclear Forces, are convinced that a fully developed nuclear program “will most likely be able to threaten the whole of Europe.” France, Germany and Great Britain are spearheading European Union efforts to convince Iran to abandon its nuclear ambitions. In January 2012, these efforts scored a major success when the EU voted to embargo Iranian oil imports and to freeze the assets of Iran’s central bank. “We will not accept Iran acquiring a nuclear weapon. Iran has so far had no regard for its international obligations and is already exporting and threatening violence around its region,” British Prime Minister David Cameron, French President Nicolas Sarkozy and German Chancellor Angela Merkel said in a joint statement. Following this lead, in March 2012, the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication (SWIFT) cut off all business with Iran, effectively stopping transactions with nearly 30 Iranian banks and their subsidiaries worldwide.

Across the Arab Middle East, the Iranian nuclear program is also raising grave concerns, primarily with regards to Iran’s intentions for regional dominance. In 2009, then-Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak said, “A nuclear armed Iran with hegemonic ambitions is the greatest threat to Arab nations today.” In 2011, Saudi Arabia government officials noted, “We cannot live in a situation where Iran has nuclear weapons … If Iran develops a nuclear weapon, that will be unacceptable to us.” Saudi Prince Turki al-Faisal expouned, noting that if Iran achieved nuclear weapons it would “lead to untold and possibly dramatic consequences.” Those consequences are clear – nuclear proliferation across the Middle East. By mid-2013, at least twelve Arab nations, including Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Turkey and the UAE had begun to explore nuclear energy.

For Israel  in particular, a nuclear armed Iran is not tolerable.  Not only would Iranian nuclear weapons create an existential threat to Israel’s existence, it would also limit Israel’s ability to protect itself from Iranian terror proxies such as Hezbollahand Hamas. IDF intelligence believes that Iranian proxy Hezbollah had amassed nearly 65,000 rockets and missiles within striking distance of Israel in southern Lebanon. Former-Minister of Defense Ehud Barak noted that if Iran gained a nuclear capability, then retaliating against an attack from Hamas or Hezbollah “would be tantamount to an attack on Iran,” and would thus restrict an aggressive range of operations. Therefore, in the words on PM Benjamin Netanyahu, Israel is “determined to prevent Iran from developing nuclear weapons; we leave all options on the table; and containment is definitely not an option.”

Despite the election of President Hassan Rouhani – a former member of Iran’s nuclear negotiation team that temporarily suspended the program in 2003 – to succeed the vitriolic Ahmadinejad, Iran is still closing in on its “immunity zone” – the point when its accumulated know-how, raw materials, experience and equipment would ensure that any military strike would fail in derailing the nuclear program.

It is well past time to more stringently implement an international sanctions regime sufficiently punitive to convince the Iranian leadership to abandon their project. In the absence of such sanctions, or if they are shown to be ineffective, a joint military response, as undesirable as it may be, will most likely be the only other option.

Original Source: jewishvirtuallibrary.org

Is the Middle East on the Verge of Exploding?

Globe: Middle East (01) feature
By Dr. Mordechai Kedar January 26, 2015

Five separate sets of potential fireworks have been igniting simultaneously in the Middle East for the last few weeks, each of them adding fuel to the fires caused by the others.

If and when these developments reach the kindling point, the entire region may go up in uncontrollable flames.

These are the sources of the fires:

a. the rivalry between Al Qaeda and ISIS

b. the intensifying struggle between the Sunni Jabhat al Nusra and the Shiite Hezbollah.

c. the successes of the Houthis in Yemen

d. Islamic fury at what is happening in Egypt

e. the struggle between Islamic extremists and European regimes

Here are the details::

explosive-sit-in-mid-easta. In the militant Sunni arena there is a fierce struggle going on between organizations that identify with Al Qaeda’s ideology, headed by Jabhat al Nusra – and ISIS, which is in control over large swathes of Syria and Iraq and has established the most stringent form of Sharia law in those areas. The rivalry has caused Al Qaeda to increase its attacks on the Yemeni government, abort an American attempt to rescue two hostages from Yemen last December, accept responsibility for the Charlie Hebdomurders in Paris and announce that the brothers who perpetrate the murders received their training in an Al Qaeda camp in Yemen.

b. The war between the Shiite Assad regime and Hezbollah on the one hand and Sunni Jabhat al Nusra on the other is getting more fierce. Jabhat al Nusra managed to cause Hezbollah painful losses  recently, near the Hermon Mountain range and in a daring infiltration into the Bekaa Valley in Lebanon, by way of the city of Arsal. Hezbollah is feeling pressured, leading the Iranian revolutionary guards to send some top officers to help the organization plan its next operation and improve its results.

c. In Yemen, the Shiite Houthi militias have succeeded in taking over the capital city of Sana’a and appear as the winning side in the long, drawn out war the Houthis have been waging against that nation. Iran is backing the Houthis, the US is helping the regime, both against al Qaeda and the Houthis. Without doubt, Yemen is a battlefield where Iran is forcing its enemies to follow its agenda, including nearby Saudi Arabia, which sees the Houthis as a direct threat to its security. Several years ago, the Saudis built a separation fence all along their border with Yemen, in an attempt to keep out Al Qaeda and Houthi militants.

d. There is a fierce struggle in Egypt between the Muslim Brotherhood – the mother of all Sunni Jihad organizations – and the regime of Al Sisi. As far as this struggle goes, Sisi is reinstating the government of Gamal abdel Nasser, Sadat and Mubarak, all of whom waged relentless and bloody war against the “Brothers”.  As of now, Sisi has succeeded in pushing the “Brothers” from positions of rule into jail cells and from the streets to the cemetery. His successes are infuriating his detractors.    The fight is to the finish, and it is also being waged in the Sinai Desert between the government and the militias of Anṣār Bayt al-Maqdis, who recently switched its loyalties from al Qaeda to ISIS.

Europe is a relatively new battleground, but the last few weeks showed mounting escalation, both in jihadist activities against governments (see France) and in governmental activity against jihad cells (Belgium, Germany). Jihad activities in Europe are encouraged by ISIS as well as Al Qaeda, both sides of the rivalry mentioned above. People who return from Jihad in Syria, Iraq and Libya – but not just they – are participating in the heated struggle for Europe’s image.

These struggles are synergetic, they influence one another because an Islamic militant sees what is happening in one area and decides to take revenge for Allah in another. This sinking into chaos can lead to large number of large scale conflicts, with many more participants and deaths, especially if these organizations succeed in drawing Israel and the US into the fray. We have already heard of ground troups from the West fighting ISIS.

Israel must understand the dangers now permeating the atmosphere of the MIddle East with oil vapors that any spark can set on fire and that no one will be able to put out before the entire region is ablaze. The potential for destruction posed by all these disputes is enormous, and the explosion may shake Europe and even cross the Atlantic when Islamic extremists blow their minds at the deep crisis affecting the entire Middle East.

The massive Islamic immigration to Europe turned that continent into a branch of the Middle East’s disputes, so that Europe will not be immune to the many deep seated and broad Middle Eastern problems. And America is on the same planet, so that the Middle East disasters will find their way to its shores as well.

4cm Original Source: breakingisraelnews.com

British Oligarchy planning new 9/11 to trigger World War III?

WWIII (WW3) feature (01)
CEC of Australia First published , 11 September 2014

To prepare the agenda for the 4-5 September 2014 NATO summit in Wales, the British Parliament’s House of Commons Defence Select Committee on 29 July issued a lengthy report entitled “Towards the Next Defence and Security Review: Part Two—NATO”. Chief among its bloodcurdling recommendations for NATO preparations towards a final showdown with Russia, was the downgrading of the famous Article 5 of the NATO Charter, which specifies that an “armed attack” against any of NATO’s 28 members is an attack against them all. Without offering proof, the Committee claimed that Russia is now deploying “asymmetric”, “ambiguous”, or “deniable” acts of war such as “information” or “cyber” war, as well as irregular units of “little green men”.

As the chief example of threats for which NATO must be prepared, the Committee cited the 11 September 2001 attack on the Twin Towers in New York:

“The use of airliners hijacked for attacks in New York and the Pentagon in the USA in 2001 were considered sufficient to invoke a NATO Article 5 response, even though not immediately attributable to any nation state but to non-state actors.”

Even though no nation state could be identified as the author of 9/11, the declaration of Article 5, “the only one since the inception of NATO”, had justified the NATO-spearheaded invasion of Afghanistan, the report pointed out (emphasis added). It stated that such “vicarious” or “deniable” actions must be expected more frequently in the future—on the part of Russia, “as in the situation in Ukraine”.

Taking the cue, British Prime Minister Cameron warned at a 2 September meeting of EU leaders in Brussels, on the very eve of the summit, against “appeasing [Russian President] Putin as we did Hitler”. The British, with the wholehearted support of U.S. President Obama, rammed through an agreement to upgrade a British-led NATO Rapid Reaction Force for permanent deployment in Eastern Europe, while the UK announced plans to form still another force, British-led but not formally under NATO, including Denmark, Latvia, Estonia, Lithuania, Norway and the Netherlands.

Why is the British Empire step-by-step, relentlessly whipping up the political and military atmosphere for a final showdown with Russia? Because the City of London/Wall Street-centred financial empire could explode any day now, and Anglo-American power along with it. Moreover, the recent emergence of a new world economic order around the BRICS alliance, led by Russia and China and committed to rapid rates of technological and industrial growth, will soon eclipse the collapsing Anglo-American trans-Atlantic system.

The original 9/11: the setting

In the wake of near-cataclysmic GFC of 2008, many have forgotten the sequence of accelerating, severe financial crashes that set the stage for 11 September 2001. Set in motion by the end of the Bretton Woods system of physical economic growth in 1971 and the shift to a speculative, looting system, these included:

  • The “Asia crisis” beginning July 1997, which saw the devastation of many Asian nations under speculative attack by London and Wall Street;
  • The 27 October 1997 “Black Monday” Wall Street collapse, now almost forgotten, but which was much larger even than that of October 1929.
  • The August 1998 Russian GKO bond crisis, which almost triggered a global meltdown.
  • The consequent September 1998 collapse of the U.S.-based Long Term Capital Management (LTCM) hedge fund, which came within a whisker of detonating that global financial collapse.
  • The manufactured “Y2K” crisis of 2000.

Surveying this pattern shortly after the election of London/Wall Street puppet George W. Bush (whose Wall Street banker grandfather Prescott Bush had financed Hitler’s rise to power in Germany) as U.S. President, the world’s leading economic forecaster, Lyndon H. LaRouche, Jr., warned on 3 January 2001, eight months before 9/11:

“What you’re going to get with a frustrated Bush Administration, if it’s determined to prevent itself from being opposed—its will—you’re going to get crisis-management. Where members of the Special Warfare types, of the Secret Government, the secret police teams, and so forth, will set off provocations, which will be used to bring about dictatorial powers and emotion, in the name of crisis-management.”

The morning of 9/11

At the moment reports of the attacks on the Twin Towers hit the airwaves, LaRouche was giving a live radio interview to Jack Stockwell of KTKK-AM (“K-Talk”) in Salt Lake City. LaRouche commented, “The first suspicion that’s going to be on this is Osama bin Laden.” Once the later, Pentagon attack was reported, LaRouche, a veteran of decades in intelligence and security matters, exclaimed: “You can’t go around snatching planes in a coordinated fashion, like this. You can’t do it.” [LaRouche’s radio interview is featured in the LPAC video documentary on 9/11, Ten Years Later.]

Consider the chronology of that fateful morning. Between 8:25 a.m. and 8:32 a.m. the Federal Aviation Administration’s Boston Center flight controllers reported that Flight 11 had been hijacked. The North Tower was hit at 8:46 a.m. and the South Tower hit at 9:03 a.m. The Pentagon was not hit until 9:37 a.m. This building—the headquarters of the U.S. Department of Defense—presumably the most protected building in the world, was hit more than an hour after the first reported hijacking, yet not a single fighter jet had yet been scrambled from Andrews Air Force Base—just 18 kilometres from the Pentagon. These were well-practiced routines. With more than 4,500 aircraft continuously sharing U.S. airspace on any given day, the Pentagon between September 2000 and June 2001 had launched fighters on 67 occasions to escort wayward aircraft.

Despite the shutdown of all air travel shortly after the attacks and for days following, some planes did manage to fly. A private jet landed in Washington D.C. later on 11 September, carrying the head of the British secret intelligence service (MI6) and the deputy chief of Britain’s domestic intelligence service (MI5). By the end of the week, another private flight was granted clearance to leave the USA, this one carrying some 140 Saudi Arabian citizens, including 24 members of the family of Osama bin Laden—the man credited with the attacks.

Thousands of highly qualified experts have pointed out the impossibility of the official line of the U.S. and British governments: “Al-Qaeda did it alone.” Though most influentials who knew better were cowed from speaking out, some did:

  • Dr Paul Craig Roberts, former Assistant Secretary of the U.S. Treasury, observed that “Washington’s explanation of the attack implied a security failure too massive to be credible.” A former presidential appointee to high office, Dr Roberts’ high-level security clearances and knowledge of FEMA national emergency policy well qualifies him to make such statements.
  • Former German Defence Minister Andreas von Bülow has also long charged that 9/11 was an inside job: “I know a lot of people, including very influential ones, who agree with me, but only in whispers, never publicly.”
  • Former British Environment Minister and long-time MP Michael Meacher, in a 6 September 2003article in The Guardian, “This war on terrorism is bogus”, devastated the official account, and asked socratically, “Could U.S. air security operations have been deliberately stood down on September 11?”

Orchestrated “terrorist” events as provocations are not new in history. Elected as Chancellor of Germany in January 1933, Adolf Hitler was widely regarded as a joke who would soon pass from the scene. But his Nazi party set fire to the Reichstag on 27 February 1933, which allowed Hitler to consolidate a police state within Germany and set the course for World War II. In 1962, the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff drafted Operation Northwoods, which called for Pentagon secret warfare units to kill innocent Americans and commit acts of terrorism in U.S. cities, creating public support for a war with Cuba, a plan vetoed by President John F. Kennedy.

The still-classified 28 pages: The British/Saudi authorship of 9/11

Two days ago, on 9 September 2014, three U.S. Congressmen joined seven family members of those killed in the 9/11 attacks in a powerful Capitol Hill press conference, demanding that President Obama fulfil his long-standing promise to declassify the 28 pages of the Joint Congressional Inquiry into the 9/11 events that were withheld from its report, released in 2002. This issue also received powerful coverage on CNN on 8 September. Those pages document the role of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in supporting the terrorist attack. Indeed, long-time Saudi Ambassador to the United States Prince Bandar bin-Sultan, along with his wife, aided, abetted, and personally financed some of the hijackers in the United States for a period of two years before the attacks. An intimate of the Bush family, Bandar bin-Sultan later became head of the Saudi Intelligence Agency, on top of operations promoting “Islamic fundamentalism” all over the Middle East and beyond.

But the story goes deeper still. As LaRouche’s Executive Intelligence Review magazine has documented in the explosive series of dossiers listed below, the real story of 9/11 begins in London in 1985, when Bandar-bin Sultan, an intimate of Prince Charles, met British PM Margaret Thatcher and set up what became infamous as the “Al-Yamamah Affair”, a 20-year deal between the giant British Aerospace firm BAE and the Saudi monarchy for massive British arms shipments to Saudi Arabia in return for oil, a deal worth anywhere from $100 to $160 billion. This massive deal provided a multi-billion dollar “slush fund”, which Bandar used to build up Al-Qaeda and other Islamic terrorist groups. Al-Yamamah was investigated for years by U.S. and British authorities, but its patrons in the British Crown, the City of London and Wall Street ultimately managed to cover up most of the evidence of a worldwide criminal and terrorist combine. Bandar personally received $2 billion out of the deal, which went through Saudi accounts at the Riggs Bank in Washington and were likely used to finance some of the chief actors in 9/11, those documented to have received an estimated $75,000 in “charitable donations” from his wife.

The consequences

British Prime Minister Tony Blair pyramided the lies of 9/11 into still a bigger lie: that Iraqi president Saddam Hussein had “weapons of mass destruction” that could hit Western capitals “within 45 minutes”. This argument became the pretext for the Anglo-American-led invasion of Iraq in 2003. Iraq and Afghanistan have been virtually destroyed by the “war on terror”. According to a 2006 survey published inThe Lancet, 601,027 violent deaths out of 654,965 excess deaths (those above the normal expected rate) related to the Iraq War occurred between March 2003 and June 2006 alone. At least 174,000 civilians have died violent deaths as a result of the “war on terror” in Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan as of April 2014. Illicit opium production in Afghanistan increased 40-fold after 9/11 (especially in the zones occupied by the British Army), poisoning literally millions of human beings on the Eurasian continent and beyond.

Meanwhile, the “war on terror” has been used to justify ever stronger police states throughout the trans-Atlantic sector and including Australia, as typified by the omnipotent surveillance of virtually all communications of any type by the “Five Eyes” intelligence arrangement, centred at the U.S. National Security Agency and Britain’s Communications Headquarters (GCHQ) in Cheltenham. Already in 2002, the Howard government used 9/11 to push through a set of draconian “anti-terror” laws, which have been amplified since. The Abbott government’s proposed National Security Legislation Amendment Bill (No. 1) 2014, now before parliament, will grant immunity from prosecution to ASIO and its affiliates for any crimes committed in the course of a special intelligence operation. Cameron has just announced that the UK faces “the greatest terror threat in history” (The Telegraph, 29 August) and has raised Britain’s threat level to “severe”—the second highest level, meaning that a terrorist attack is considered “highly likely”. This new threat level was declared by MI5’s Joint Terrorism Analysis Centre, which reports to no one in the UK government structure, but solely to the Crown. Almost daily the Anglo-American and Australian press reports on dozens or hundreds of American, British or Australian jihadis who will soon be streaming home to launch mayhem in the lands of their birth.

The pathway out: Glass-Steagall and a BRICS-centred New World Economic Order

As with the financial crises leading into the original 9/11, the British Crown and the City of London-Wall Street nexus are hysterical at the prospect that the next, even deeper global financial crash will crush their imperial power forever. Rather than wait for that to happen, they have launched wars all over, international terrorism, and now a likely thermonuclear showdown with Russia, in order to maintain their imperial system. We must break their power through the implementation of a Glass-Steagall-style breakup of their “Too Big To Fail” banks, and establish new institutions to direct credit into an industrial and agricultural renaissance, as the BRICS nations are now doing. It’s either that, or you’ll wake up one day before long to some British-rigged “new 9/11” in Eastern Europe, to be blamed on Russia, as forecast so recently by Her Majesty’s House Defence Select Committee.

DOCUMENTATION

“Scandal of the Century Rocks British Crown and the City”, Jeffrey Steinberg, Executive Intelligence Review, 22 June 2007. The original EIR expose which blew the lid on the Al-Yamamah affair and the real authors of 9/11

“U.S. Investigation Takes Direct Aim at Anglo-Saudi ‘Al-Yamamah’ Pot of Gold”, Jeffrey Steinberg, EIR, 30 May 2008. Reports on official investigations by U.S. and British governmental agencies into BAE and Al-Yamamah corruption, money-laundering, and ties to 9/11.

“Bust the London-Riyadh Global Terror Axis”, EIR Special Report.

“The British Monarchy, Saudi Arabia, and 9/11”, Richard Freeman and William F. Wertz, Jr., EIR, 23 May 2014. A devastating account of the decades-long, intimate ties between the Royal Family’s Prince Charles and Bandar bin-Sultan and the most evil faction of the Saudi monarchy.

Background information is available in the EIR Special Report, “Obama’s War on America: 9/11 Two”.Click here to purchase a copy.


Click here : for a free copy of the latest edition of Executive Intelligence Review magazine, which analyses the British push to position NATO to instigate a war against Russia. EIR is the weekly journal founded 40 years ago by U.S. statesman Lyndon LaRouche to investigate and name the names of those behind current events; it has been called the finest private intelligence service in the world.