James Petras: US Military versus Israel Firsters

By James Petras
Special to PalestineChronicle.com

Why must Jewish organizations be and be seen as the loudest drum-beaters of all? Why can we not bring ourselves to say that military intervention is not on the table at all? Why not stash it under the table, out of sight and mount instead a diplomatic assault? – Leonard Fein (Forward November 7, 2007)

As the White House and Congress escalate their economic sanctions and military threats against Iran, top military commanders and Pentagon officials have launched a counter-offensive, opposing a new Middle East War. While some commentators and journalists, like Chris Hedges (Truthdig, November 13, 2007), privy to this high stakes inter-elite conflict, attribute this to a White House cabal led by Vice President Cheney, a more stringent and accurate assessment pits the Zionist Power Configuration (ZPC) in the center of the Iran war debate. There is a great deal riding in this conflict – the future of the American empire as well as the balance of power in the Middle East. Equally important is the future of the US military and our already heavily constrained democratic freedoms. The outcome of the continuous and deepening confrontation between top US military officials and the Israel Firsters over US foreign policy in the Middle East has raised fundamental questions over self-determination, colonization, civilian primacy and military political intervention, empire or republic. These and related issues are far from being of academic interest only; they concern the future of America.

Recent History of the Civilian Militarists versus Anti-War Movements
Over the past seven years, the civilian militarists in the executive branch and Congress have resoundingly defeated any and all efforts by Congressional critics and anti-war leaders to end the war in Iraq and Afghanistan. Since 2003, the peace movement has practically vanished from the streets – in large part a product of its own self-destruction. The great majority of anti-war leaders opted for Democratic Party-electoral politics, a strategy that led to the successful election of a pro-war Democratic majority. The retreat of the anti-war movement turned into a full-scale rout when the government moved toward a new war with Iran: the Zionist-influenced half of the peace movement refused to join forces to oppose the Iran war agenda – heavily influenced by their loyalty to Israel and its shrill cries of an ‘existential’ danger from non-existent Iranian nuclear weapons and dependent on ‘liberal’ Zionist donors.

Along with the capitulation of the anti-war leaders and absence of any ‘street politics’, liberal Democrats, or what passes for them, fell into line with the Israel First Democratic congress-people pushing for an increasingly bellicose political agenda toward Iran. The White House, especially the Vice President’s office were fully in tune with the Israel Firsters and the ZPC ‘keeping the military option’ on the table and priming the US forces in the Gulf for offensive action. Within the military and the intelligence services strong opposition emerged to an attack on Iran.

American Military versus the ZPC Fight over Middle East Wars
The battle between the civilian militarists (Zion-Cons) in the Pentagon and the military brass took place, in large part, behind closed doors: From the beginning, the military was severely handicapped in so far as they could not engage in public debate. The military elite did not possess an army of lobbyists, activist ideologues and the entire mass media apparatus to promote their point of view. The ZPC-Israel Firsters’ Wars-For-Israel crowd did have all of these ‘resources’ in abundance, and they used them to the maximum in a spiteful and arrogant fashion, when the occasion arose – such as when military officers testifying before Congress questioned the war-to-be in Iraq. Zion-militarists like Richard Perle, Norman Podhoretz and their influential cohort baited the military for having ‘the most advanced arms and refusing to use them’, of being fearful of expending troops to defend US security interests in the Middle East, of being ultra-cautious when audacity and preemptive action was necessary. The Israel-Firsters, who not only never risked a broken fingernail on any battlefield, deprecated the generals to increase their power to order them around through their servile operatives in the Rumsfeld Pentagon, Vice President’s Office and in Bush’s National Security Council. The Zion-Cons’ arm-chair military strategists have absolutely no qualms in sending US troops to war in Afghanistan, Iraq and now Iran to enhance Israeli regional power because 99.8% of the rank and file troops are not of their kin and kind. On the contrary they ridicule the US military precisely to prosecute wars and avoid the loss of Israeli lives, resulting from an Israeli attack on Iran to enhance its power in the Middle East.

Israel-Firsters Win Round One
For all of the above-enumerated reasons, the Israel-Firsters overcame the doubts and questions on the war by the military in the run-up to and continuation of the Iraq War. The ZPC’s success in launching the war over military objections was largely due to their control over US civilian institutions and the primacy of these institutions over any and all military political dissent. However the ZPC was not content with repressing civilian dissent, they aggressively repressed and silenced any opposition from within the military: General Eric Shinseki, Chief of Staff of the Army saw his career destroyed when he questioned US policy on the eve of the Iraq invasion. Two years later, General Peter Pace was denied a second term as chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff when he rejected claims by the White House and the ZPC that Iran was supplying weapons to the Iraqi insurgents. Lieutenant General Ricardo Sanchez was retired following his call for the withdrawal of US troops in Iraq, which he later described as “a nightmare with no end in sight”. General John Abazaid followed. Captains and Colonels in the Pentagon who disagreed with the lies and fabrication of ‘intelligence’ by the Zion-Cons in the Pentagon leading to the Iraq invasion were marginalized and/or silenced. Zion-Cons in the Pentagon marginalized CIA intelligence reports that didn’t fit in with their war propaganda– these studies were-written, cut and spliced to serve their ends. The Zion-Cons in the Pentagon established a parallel ‘intelligence’ office under their exclusive control (Office of Special Planning) and placed ‘one of their own’, Abraham Shumsky, in charge.

In the Zion-Con charge to push the US into a new war with Iran, they (along with Vice President Cheney) have successfully delayed and forced the rewrite of a collective report by various intelligence agencies, the National Intelligence Estimate (NIE) on Iran, because it had to fit in with their war plans.

The humiliating defeats and gratuitous public insults which the victorious ZPC inflicted on the US military has had the effect of raising the back of senior officers in the run-up to a military attack on Iran. The military is going public and fighting back with biting open criticism of the White House and Zion-Con war planners. The underlying deep and widespread hostility of the high-ranking military officials has nothing to do with Zion-Con charges of ‘anti-Semitism’ and everything to do with the destruction, demoralization and discredit of the US military which has resulted from following Zion-Con war policies in Iraq.

The US armed forces have crumbled and decayed as the Iraq occupation and counter-insurgency progresses into its 6th year. Over half of the officers are refusing to re-enlist, recruiting quotas are not being reached except by drastically lowering standards, and morale of on-duty reservists is at it’s lowest because of extended tours of duty. Black enlistment has dropped precipitously. Despite the war being portrayed by President Bush and Israeli leaders including Prime Minister Olmert as for Israel’s national survival, American Jewish war-time enlistment is at its lowest in almost a century. Public sentiment for the military has declined sharply since the war, exacerbated by Zionist (Richard Perle, Frederick Kagan, Kenneth Pollack and Martin Indyk) charges of incompetence against American military occupation forces. The loss of prestige, enlistment and the increasing over-stretch of the army and the abrasive and domineering way in which the Zion-Cons denigrate active US military commanders has raised their ire. At one point in an interview, General Tommy Franks referred to Zion-Con, ex-Undersecretary of Defense Douglas Feith as ‘the dumbest bastard I ever knew’.

Round Two: American Military Versus Israel-Firsters: The Iran War
Recognizing how they were outgunned by the Zion-Con monopoly of public space for political discussion in the run-up to the Iraq invasion, the military has gone public. Admiral William Fallon, head of CENTCOM (Central Command) has launched a series of interviews designed to counter-Zion-Con war propaganda. He has formed an anti-War-With-Iran alliance with senior military officers, Secretary of Defense Gates and sectors of the intelligence services not under Zion-Con influence (Financial Times Nov. 12, 2007 p.1). The Secretary of Defense is not a reliable ally to the officers opposed to an Iran war, since he is notorious for caving in to ZPC pressure when his post in under threat.

Every major Israeli public spokes-person has at least raised the issue of a sneak attack (translation: ‘preventive war’ in Zion-speak) and many are in favor of an immediate attack. Reliable sources in Israel claim that war preparations are already advanced. Fabricating ‘existential threats’ to Israeli existence, Israeli Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni has spoken forcefully even … shrilly, about Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s threat to ‘wipe Israel off the map’ – a much repeated, deliberate mistranslation of the Prime Minister’s reference to Israel (more reliable translations refer to ‘the regime currently occupying Jerusalem disappearing into history’).

While Israeli officials have placed war with Iran as their second most important priority on their foreign policy agenda, by far their highest priority is convincing and manipulating the US to carry out the war and save Israel the enormous economic cost and loss of Israeli lives. The Israeli state has made its war policy the central task for their agents and their apparatus in the US. The ZPC has taken up the Israeli line with a vengeance. Several hundred full-time functionaries from all the major Jewish organizations have visited and ‘advised’ Congress that bellicose support for a war against Iran is the primary way to demonstrate their unconditional defense of Israel’s ‘survival’ and guarantee campaign financing from their wealthy political donor base. Over the past year, several major daily newspapers, weekly and monthly magazines from the New York Times through Time, Newsweek, the New Yorker, and the entire yellow press (NY Post, New York Sun, The Daily News) has published reams of propaganda articles fabricating an Iranian nuclear threat, demonizing Iran and its leaders and calling for the US to bomb Iran and eliminate Israel’s ‘existential’ (the most nauseating and overused cliché) threat. Several thousand op-ed pieces have been written parroting the Israeli war-line by a small army of Zionist academics and think tank propagandists. Breathless and vitriolic, the Israel Firsters claim that ‘time is running out’, that Iran’s pursuit of diplomacy is a ploy for inaction, that Iran’s well-documented openness to negotiations is a trick. Venomous attacks are launched against Europeans for not pursuing the military option; Germany is slandered as following in the footsteps of the Nazis because its industries and banks still do business with Iran. US critics of the ZPC’s pursuit of an Iranian war for Israel are accused of being ‘soft on terrorism’, appeasers, and almost always labeled as overt or covert ‘anti-Semites. The massive, sustained and one-sided dominance by the ZPC of the Iranian war narrative has been successful. US public opinion surveys show over half (52% according to a Zogby Poll) of the US public is in favor of offensive bombing of Iran. Thus speaks the State of Israel via its overbearing politically dominant Fifth Column to the American People: The purpose of the USA is to serve and sacrifice for the greater good (and power and wealth and dominance) of Israel.

The clearest and most vicious Zion-Con counter-attack against the US military’s harsh reaction to their leading us into the Iraq War came from a predictable ultra-Zionist think-tank, the Foreign Policy Research Center (FPRC) run by Ilan Berman, a close collaborator with the Israeli extremist Likud leader Netanyahu. Speaking at a meeting co-sponsored by the FPRR and the Reserve Officers Association on October 15 2007 entitled “Mind the Gap”: Post-Iraq Civil-Military Relations in America, senior fellow Frank Hoffman attempted to turn senior military officers’ criticism of the disastrous Zion-Con authored Iraq War into a sinister military plot: “The nation’s leadership, civilian and military, need to come to grips with the emerging ‘stab-in-the-back’ thesis in the armed services and better define the social compact (sic) and code of conduct (sic) that governs the overall relationship between the masters of policy (the Zion-Cons) and the dedicated servants (the military) we ask to carry it out. (Dereliction of Duty Redux?). Hoffman attempts to deflect military and public anger at the enormous damage in morale, recruitment and lives which the Zion-Con war policies have inflicted on the US Armed Forces by invoking an abstract entity: “Our collective failure (sic) to address the torn fabric and weave a stronger and more enduring relationship will only allow a sore to fester and ultimately undermine the nation’s security” (ibid) 

Obfuscating Zionist control over war policy, Hoffman instead refers to “civilian” control over the military as being “constitutionally, structurally (?) and historical well-grounded.” This is nonsense: there is no provision, article or clause in the American Constitution which states that the military should submit to civilian power subordinate to a foreign state.

After a vacuous general discussion of civilian-military relations in the lead-up to the Zion-Con designed Iraq War, Hoffman then tries to paint the military critics of Zion-Con Donald Rumsfeld as attacking an innovative defender of civilian supremacy over the military – even as he embraced wholesale torture techniques and violated every principle of the Geneva Convention of War and US Military Code of Conduct toward prisoners and civilians. Hoffman turns up the Zion-Con venom against military officers who dared to question Rumsfeld’s application of Israel’s illegal and totalitarian technique of colonial warfare in Iraq. He then launches a diatribe against the professional competence of senior military advisers, “who failed to provide military counsel because they were intimidated ‘yes men’ or who failed to recognize the complexity of war” (ibid). Berman’s prodigy, Hoffman, makes a case that the Zion-Con ‘masters of Iraq war policy’ were not responsible for the disastrous war – it was the military officers “who failed to provide candid advice, who fail in their duty to their immediate superiors and stay in their posts (who) are guilty of dereliction of duty to the President, the Congress and their subordinates.” (ibid) The same Zion-Cons who drove out and forced the resignation of American generals who had dissented with Wolfowitz, Feith, Abrams and Rumsfeld are now judged and condemned for dereliction of duty by the same Zion-Cons.

The Zion-Cons follow the Goebbels principle: ‘The Big Lie repeated often enough can convince the stupid masses.’

The Berman-Hoffman FPRC counter-attack against American military officers speaking truth to power is a limp effort to deflect attention from the Zion-Con policymakers’ treasonous behavior and their role in degrading the US military. The FPRC document blaming the military and unnamed civilians (exclusively non-Zionist) for the Iraq debacle is one of the numerous variants on the same theme by Zionist academic militarists justifying the power of the ZPC in the name of civilian supremacy, without spelling out the national loyalties of the ‘civilian’ masters of career military officers.

According to a detailed report published in the Financial Times (November 12, 2007), the US military is not buying the Zion-Con line: “Admiral William Fallon, head of Central Command which oversees military operations in the Middle East, said that while dealing with Iran was a ‘challenge’ a military strike was not in the offing.” (Page 1 and 9) Backed by many active senior officers and numerous retired generals, Fallon has dismissed the Zion-Con intellectuals and propagandists as ignorant war-mongers. In his own words: “It astounds me that so many pundits and other s are spending so much time yakking about this topic (of a military attack on Iran)” (FT: November 12, 2007 p.9).

In direct repudiation of the ZPC’s frenetic campaigning for economic sanctions leading to a military attack, top US military officials and even Secretary of Defense Gates have for the time being blocked the military option. Addressing the Zionist strategy of sequential wars against Israel’s enemies (Iran, Syria, Lebanon), Fallon stated: “It seems to me that we don’t need more problems”. His remarks are understood to reflect the views of the majority of senior officers in the Middle East combat zone but not Bush’s politically ambitious General Petraeus, who worked with his Israeli-Mossad partners (in Northern Iraq “Kurdistan”) in training and arming the Kurdish militia death squads – Peshmerga.

Retired Generals Anthony Zinni and Joseph Hoar, both former heads of CENTCOM, have pointed their fingers at the menace of the Zion-Cons and Israel-Firsters in the government. According to Gen. Hoar, “There is no doubt that an element in the government wants to strike Iran. But the good news is that the Secretary of Defense and senior military are against it” (FT November 12, 2007). The forced and voluntary retirement, including the indictment and jailing of some highly placed Zion-Cons in the Pentagon, White House, Treasury and State Departments have weakened their stranglehold over US policy in the White House. The top Zion-Con policymakers who have left or are in jail include Rumsfeld (Gentile Zionist), Wolfowitz, Feith, Franklin, Shumsky, Perle – in the Pentagon; Irving Libby, Wurmser, Ari Fleicher, Frum in the White House and many others too numerous to name.

While the Zion-Cons retain power in the higher circles of government, at this moment, they are not able to run roughshod over their military critics and opponents as they did in the run-up to the Iraq war. In part this is because of the horrendous situation resulting from their war in Iraq, which has undermined their credibility and turned the vast majority of the US public against their war. Equally the Zion-Cons’ war and the disastrous impact of a prolonged (5 year) urban guerrilla resistance on the US Armed Forces, in terms of loss of personnel, morale, junior and senior officers and the over-extension of the US military to the detriment of the defense of the US Empire’s interests around the world has served as a ‘wake-up call’ for senior military command.

Drawing on their experience from the invasion of Iraq, few if any accept the Israeli-Zion-Con ‘evaluations’ of the outcome and response to a military attack. They remember too well the optimistic propaganda put out by Zionist academic ideologues like Kagan and Cohen that the ‘Iraqis will celebrate and welcome American forces into Baghdad as liberators’.

According to a report in the Financial Times, retired General Zinni speaking for the many active senior officers says ‘even a limited American attack could push Teheran to retaliate in a number of ways such as firing missiles at Israel, Saudi oilfields and US bases in Iraq, mining the Straits (sic) of Hormuz and activating sleeper terrorist cells around the world.” (FT op cit). He concluded by pointing out, “It is not a matter of a one-strike option. It is the classic question of… ‘and then what’?”. A more circumspect criticism of the Iran war reasoning has been voiced by Admiral Mike Muller. He objected to the US-Israeli agents “putting the military option on the table”. Admiral Muller added, “We’re in a conflict in two countries out there right now. We have to be incredibly thoughtful about the potential of in fact getting into a conflict with a third country in that part of the world.”(FT Op Cit).

One of the biggest dangers in forcing the US into a war with Iran is an Israeli sneak air attack, in which it destroys Iranian military installations causing Iran to retaliate against the US, Israel’s ally, main financier and armaments supplier. An Israeli air strike is not the only war provocation – the Mossad is deeply in involved in training Kurdish commandos to carry out terrorist cross-border attacks from Iraq, killing Iranian civilians and soldiers, bombing military installations and collecting intelligence, hoping to provoke a large-scale Iranian military response against ‘Kurdistan’. Iranian retaliation against Mossad trained Kurdish terrorists could then be twisted by Zion-Con ideologues and their ‘political elements in Washington’ (to quote Admiral Fallon) into a major invasion of Iraq, with the hope of convincing the Bush White House to ‘counter-attack in defense of our troops in Iraq’.

The Israeli regime and its Fifth Column in the United States have been pressing for unilateral intervention against Iran, preferably military, ever since 2003. The Daily Alert, mouthpiece of the 52 biggest Jewish organizations (The Presidents of the Major American Jewish Organizations) has published scores of articles each week, characterizing the Europeans as ‘foot draggers’, ‘weak on Iran’, ‘playing down’ or ‘failing’ to take serious the ‘existential threat to Israel’. The US Zion-Cons have their own ‘State Department’ and ‘overseas’ missions, with their own ‘foreign policy-makers and spokespeople’. They meet with European, Asian and Latin American heads of State in the US or during ‘visits’ overseas, mobilizing advising, organizing and strengthening Zion-Con outposts throughout Europe and beyond. Their international reach has succeeded in a number of important decisions and appointments, most notably in Brussels and in Sarkozy’s appointment of Zionist fanatic Bernard Kouchner as France’s Minister of Foreign Relations. In a rather crude and undiplomatic show of Zionist loyalty immediately upon taking office, Kouchner declared France to be in favor of a military option against Iran. He was later pressured to retract, but Sarkozy, who himself is no minor league Israel supporter, has echoed Kouchner’s line. One of Kouchner’s first acts was to travel to American-occupied Iraq to express his personal support for the occupation. As a result of Israeli and Zion-Con pressure on the White House, France, Germany and England have all supported the escalation of sanctions against Iran…the Zionist strategy of ‘strangle the economy now and bomb later’.

The Zion-Cons’ weakness is relative: Although they no longer can purge (or ‘retire’) or silence senior military officers opposed to their Mid East Wars for Israel, they are extremely effective in discrediting any and all impartial international bodies and reports which fail to support the Israeli line that Iran represents an ‘existential threat’ to its survival (code language for ‘challenges or resists Israel’s drive to dominate the region’). Predictably taking their cue from the Israeli foreign office’s dismissal of the United Nations International Atomic Energy Agency’s report (November 15, 2007) which documented that Iran had no nuclear arms program and no capacity to construct a nuclear weapon at least for the next five years, the ZPC unleashed a mass media propaganda campaign attacking the IAEA chairman as a ‘pro-Iranian’ agent (Jerusalem Post November 16, 2007). At the same time the news ‘reports’ used ‘potted quotes’ from the Report, mentioning only the IAEA ‘reservations’ and the ‘questions unanswered’ and ‘issues not addressed’. US Senator from Tel Aviv, Joseph Lieberman combined both a distorted (or blatantly falsified) version of the IAEA Report and a vicious attack on its Chief, El Baradei, claiming that the Report ‘made it clear (sic) that Iran was still hiding (sic) large parts of its nuclear program’ (Jerusalem Post November 16, 2007). A careful or even casual reading of the IAEA Report shows not a single paragraph, line or word stating that Iran was ‘hiding large parts of its nuclear program’ as Lieberman accused. Ever mendacious, Lieberman, who had publicly called for an immediate military attack on ‘Iran, Iraq and Syria’ just days after the September 11, 2001 terrorist attack, viciously attacked El Baradei for ‘writing in the report that Iran was cooperating and for not recommending a new round of sanctions’. In other words, the Zion-Cons with their mediocre academic mouth-pieces can save the UN, the IAEA and El Baradei’s time and money in site visits and delicate radiologic and satellite monitoring by handing over the Israeli Foreign Office’s pre-packaged ‘press’ handouts or ‘sexed-up intelligence reports’. The Zion-Cons make up in zeal what they lack in fact: Cooking up threats and telling the eager world that Iran is not cooperative and should be heavily sanctioned, starved or bombed into submission. The Zion-Cons follow the guidelines of Israel’s agenda, to turn Iran into a Gaza Strip of deprivation and desperation.

The Israeli dismissal of the UN report on Iran, and the Zion-Con falsification of its contest and attack on its chief negotiator, El Baradei, was echoed by the While House and the Zion-colonized Congress. With a lack of originality characteristic of US Middle East policy-makers, they also cited the potted quotes from the IAEA Report to justify harsher sanctions and a greater degree of confrontation. The purpose is to provoke a breakup of the dialog long established between the IAEA and Iran. The Zion-Con-White House strategy is to implicate the IAEA in their savage attacks on Iran, and via harsher economic sanctions end Iran’s cooperation with the IAEA. Having forced the IAEA out they would then accuse Iran of rejecting dialog and cooperation with the United Nations. This contrived scenario (like the earlier phony claims that ‘Saddam threw out the weapons inspectors’) would set the stage for a US-British led military attack under the pretext that all diplomatic approaches failed to deter Iran’s nuclear program which the IAEA denied had any military component. It ill behooves anyone to actually consult the IAEA website and read the reports’ favorable account of Iran’s willing cooperation in providing site visits, documents and responses in answer to many of the key issues raised by the IAEA, the US and the EU. The report ultimately refutes the major accusations cooked up by the Zion-Cons and their political assets in the White House, State Department and Congress. The most important information contained in the IAEA Report is that its inspectors found no evidence of any Iranian effort to develop nuclear weapons.

US Military-Israel-Firsters: Fundamental Issues in Dispute
There are at least 5 fundamental issues in dispute between senior American military officials and ZPC:

These include (1) the nature of the Iranian threat: The ZPC argues that Iran represents an immediate deadly threat to the US, Israel, Iraq and the Gulf States. The American officers do not see the Iranians as a threat because they have engaged the Iranians in stopping the flow of arms and fighters to the Iraqi resistance; they recognize Iranian positive diplomatic overtures to all the Gulf States including Saudi Arabia; the US armada in the Persian Gulf is confident they can act as a deterrent to any Iranian attack; and finally the US Central Command know they are in the Persian Gulf facing Iran because of the White House’s provocative offensive strategy – and that Iran has not demonstrated anything but a defensive capability. Senior American officers view favorably Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s offer “to discuss with Arab nations a plan to enrich uranium outside the region in a neutral country such as Switzerland.”(Dow Jones News Service in Saudia Arabia, quoted in BBC News November 18, 2007). Not a single major television or print media in the US ran the Iranian president’s offer – as would be predictable in our Zionized media.

(2) Uranium Program The Israelis, the only nuclear power in the Middle East, and among the top five nuclear powers, argue that Iran, which does not have a single nuclear weapon or even a weapons program, is an ‘existential (sic) threat’ to Israel, the Middle East, Europe and the United States. This is one argument that the ZPC have used to convince the Democratic Party majority in Congress, the White House and the pro-Israel wing of the US Peace Movement to escalate economic sanctions and keep the ‘military option’ on the table.

The only problem is that most European, Asian, African and Latin American diplomats, experts, the majority of world public opinion and most senior American officers don’t buy Israel’s shrill disinformation. All legal experts who have given a perfunctory look at the non-proliferation agreement (NPA) insist that there is absolutely no clause or article prohibiting uranium enrichment. Intelligence experts and US military report that Iran at the earliest may have sufficient enriched uranium by 2010 and may be able to produce a low-yield weapon by 2010-2015. The job of the ZPC, pursued at full speed, is to bury the NPA under mountains of fabrications, arguing that enriching uranium itself is a violation of ‘international law’. The purpose of this attempt to concoct a full state of belligerency is to escalate US and Israeli attacks on Iran and hasten the timing of a surprise, offensive onslaught. This is exactly the reason why American intelligence briefings and IAEA reports have aroused the fury of Israel and its operatives in the US and their calling for El Baradei’s dismissal.

Iranian Arms to Iraq: The US Military and CENTCOM have repeatedly denied, especially in light of another ZPC onslaught to the contrary, that the Iranian government is supplying arms, especially roadside mines or IEDs to Iraqi ‘terrorists’ and its allied militia forces. Contrary to the assertion of the leading Israeli spokes-people in the US Senate, the US military categorically denies that the IEDs are made in Iran, having discovered bomb-making factories in Iraq and from interrogation and actually studying the construction and contents of the IEDs.

Zionist-colonized Senators led by Hillary Clinton have followed the lead of Israeli Senatorial Spokesman Joseph Lieberman, rather than consulting with the American military, and are mouthing the rhetoric of Iranian arms killing American soldiers (FT  November 12, 2007 p.9). Following the Lieberman-Israeli-ZPC propaganda blitz, the US Senate voted in favor of the Lieberman-Kyle resolution naming Iran’s principle border defense force, the Republican Guard, a ‘terrorist organization’, moving one step closer to an attack. The hollowness of this resolution is reflected in the fact to not one of any of the US’s servile allies chose to follow its lead in denouncing the Republican Guard. Nothing more clearly demonstrates the Israeli-ZPC colonization of the US congress than on questions of war and peace, when the legislature is more likely to follow the dictates of Israeli propagandists than to consult its own senior military officials.

Consequences of an attack on Iran: The main concern of the ZPC and its political clients in the White House and Congress is that an attack on Iran will secure the safety of Israel, eliminating a ‘mortal enemy’, preventing ‘another Holocaust’ and stopping a ‘new Hitler’. In pursuit of this policy, Israel’s US agents have repeatedly blocked every open-ended Iranian effort to cooperate with the US against the Taliban, Al Queda and other ‘terrorists groups’ as is profusely documented by two former high-ranking policy experts from the Bush Administration’s National Security Council, Hiliary Mann and Flynt Leverett,. (see ‘The Secret History of the Impending War with Iran That the White House Doesn’t Want You to Know’, Esquire Magazine, November 2007). Every Iranian offer of unconditional negotiation and cooperation with the US to fight terrorism, as the US defines it, was rejected by key extremist Zion-Cons in the Pentagon (Feith), the Vice President’s office (Irving Libby), the National Security Council (Elliott Abrams and the President’s National Security Adviser (Stephen Hadley, a zealous Gentile Zion-Con among the brotherhood). The Zion-cons paint a picture of an air attack which would simultaneously blow up all Iranian nuclear research facilities, infrastructure, airfields, military bases and ports…preventing any and all Iranian counter attacks against US strategic interests in the region. They further embellish their totalitarian vision by arguing that the Islamic republic would be overthrown by a populace grateful to the Americans for bombing their country, destroying its infrastructure and killing thousands. The Neo-Cons’ infantile delusions then lead them to project the emergence of a pro-Western Iranian secular state favorable to American occupation of the Middle East and, of course, wholeheartedly renouncing any ‘existential’ threats to the ‘survival’ of its new ally, Israel.

On the issue of the consequences of an attack on Iran, the US military is totally at odds with the Israeli-ZPC propaganda. Senior military officials based on real estimates on the ground and from hard data from intelligence experts, estimate that Iran will be in a position to retaliate and cause enormous immediate and long-term damage to strategic US and global interests. CENTCOM estimates that Iran will set-off air to sea missiles aimed at the US fleet stationed in the Persian Gulf and land-to-land missiles destroying oil production sites in the Gulf States, creating a major world oil shortage, doubling oil prices and provoking a world recession as energy scarcities paralyze production. Secondly the Iranians will send several tens of thousands of its elite forces across the border into Iraq, joining with its Iraqi Shia allies to overrun US bases and endanger the lives of the 160,000 US troops currently in Iraq. This would undermine the entire Iraq war effort, inflicting a strategic defeat and further undermine US military capacity in the Middle East and elsewhere.

Thirdly the Iranians will be able to easily block the Strait of Hormuz so that one third of the Middle East’s oil shipments will be paralyzed.

Fourthly, military intelligence estimates that Iranian ‘sleeper cells’ in Asia, Africa, Europe and perhaps in North America will be activated and engage in ‘big impact’ terrorist missions. Whatever the likelihood of this scenario, it is clear that the US military anticipates major protests and perhaps even the violent overthrow of its clients in the Middle East, if not elsewhere.

Zion-Cons have neither countered military intelligence estimates with any credible counter-facts, nor even seriously considered the likely disastrous consequences affecting the US, Europe and Asia: They only consider Israel’s ‘security’ and its regional ambitions. No Zionophile or Zion-Con has considered the enormous costs in terms of US lives and damage to the fragile economy and society of a full scale third prolonged war. In effect, the Zion-cons will kill their own US goose, which has laid golden eggs for Israel for almost 6 decades. It is an example of the Zion-Cons’ supreme arrogance and sense of their own power that they feel they can plunge the US into a Third Asian war which will devastate the US economy and cause world-wide energy scarcity, and still secure their yearly ‘tribute’ of $3 Billion Dollars foreign aid for Israel as well as guaranteeing oil for Israel by diverting it from the needs of American consumers and industries. It is clear that in doing a cost-benefit analysis on a US attack on Iran, Israeli and ZPC operatives have approvingly figured that the costs are on the US side of the ledger and the benefits are for the Israelis. Were it known, American public opinion might disapprove.

The main difference is that the US does not have a comparable Washington Power Configuration in Tel Aviv to influence Israeli policy to match the state’s Zionist Power Configuration which shapes and influences US Middle East policy.

Military-Zioncon: Punch and Counter-Punch
By the end of 2007 it is clear that the US military, led by CENTCOM Commander, Admiral William Fallon and Security of Defense Gates, have successfully, if temporarily contained the strenuous Israeli-Zion-Con military thrust to war. Though Gates backtracked under ZPC pressure and later denied that he had taken the military option ‘off the table’. In response, the Zion-Cons launched an end-around tactic by intensifying their efforts to impose a global economic blockade to strangle the Iranian economy. The Zionized White House has pressured and secured the whole-hearted support of Gordon Brown of Great Britain, and Sarkozy of France for a set of economic sanctions that will in effect rupture all dialog with the IAEA. This is the strategic goal of the Zion-Cons: no dialog, no diplomacy, and blockaded economy, ripe for Anglo-French-American bombing. The Zion-cons have shrewdly avoided a head on confrontation with Fallon and his allies. They recognize that a bruising battle in which they might expose their Fifth Column credentials and in which their ‘anti-Semitic’ slanders against a popular patriotic American general might backfire by finally arousing a silent, latent anti-Zionist majority to speak out. Since the military would be called upon to carry out the military option which it strongly opposes, the Zion-Cons turn to their automatic, rubber-stamp majority in the US Congress and especially their most zealous Zionists in the federal bureaucracy. Treasury Department functionary Levey has devoted all of his working time browbeating, banning and blacklisting any and all businesses and banks dealing directly or indirectly with Iran or its trading partners.

The deepening and all-important conflict between the pro-Israel warmongers and the anti-war American senior officers is reaching a bitter climax. As the US military disintegrates under prolonged colonial warfare, the ZPC intensifies its campaign for a third war for Israel and against Iran, a war which will totally shatter the US military forces.

The fundamental question emerging for most senior officers, in private gatherings and informal discussions is ‘Who commands our Commander in Chief?’ The deep animosity of US senior active military officers frequently erupts at the ZPC’s careless and callous disregard for American lives. They disdainfully refer to the Zion-Con policymakers as ‘arm-chair military strategists’ who never fought a war, never shot or been shot. At one level, the senior military officers are appalled by the ignorance of the Zion-Con military ‘experts’ and policy-makers featured by the Zion-Con controlled mass media. One of the most frequent military criticisms is that the Zion-Con policy-makers don’t have an‘exit strategy’ – attributing it to their lack of knowledge or strategic thinking. In reality, the lack of Zion-Con concern for a realistic exit strategy is because the Zion-Cons are concerned (in light of Israel’s priorities) only with an entry policy, namely degrading the invaded countries’ military and economic potential. Secondly the Zion-Cons do not have an exit strategy because they believe the US should stay, colonize, build bases and engage in a prolonged war for a chimerical total victory.

The question of ‘who commands the Commander in Chief’ goes to the entire core of our constitutional order, because it raises the deeper question of ‘who defines the national interests’ for which the military are fighting? If as we have documented, the ZPC has effectively colonized the White House and Legislative Branches (and the Justice Department and the appointment of an ultra-Zionist Attorney General Michael Mulkasey and Israel-First Head of Homeland Security Michael Chertoff), to serve the interests of a foreign power (Israel) in what sense does a colonized political system serve the interests of a democratic public? Does there exist a primary condition that makes it possible to speak of a democracy, namely national self-determination, de-colonization necessary for the re-democratization of American political institutions?

So far the only effective resistance to colonization has comes from the US military. The military is a non-democratic, hierarchical institution but an institution representative of the public’s opposition to colonial encroachments.

What would normally be considered the prime movers challenging Zion-Con colonization, namely the President, Congress, the political parties or even the antiwar movements have abdicated their responsibilities — they have been in part or whole colonized and neutralized.

By default, it has fallen to senior military commanders who reject being commanded by the ZPC at the service of Israel. Paradoxically, it is the military, which has taken over the struggle against an offensive war with Iran, a struggle where the American peace movement has failed. It is the military, which has challenged the Zion-Con agenda, where the Congress has been corrupted and capitulated for reasons of campaign financing, political blackmail and double loyalty.

Where does that leave us, as democrats and anti-colonists?

We should be able to have both an independent de-colonized and democratic America, governed by patriotic Americans. But suppose we have to choose between de-colonization led by the military or a corrupt colonized electoral system – what should be done?

The ideal solution would be a revitalized civil society including secularist citizens, non-fundamentalist Muslims and Christians, and non-Zionist Jews, organized in an anti-war, anti-colonial movement and political parties allied with patriotic officers to ‘re-found the republic’. The purpose would be to establish a republic to ‘defend the heartland’ from fires, floods, economic pillage, terrorists, ecological predators and foreign agents acting on behalf of alien regimes. Can it happen? We shall see. What is becoming clear however is that the anti-colonial imperative is growing stronger by the day, if it doesn’t come from below, it may have to come from above.

-James Petras, a former Professor of Sociology at Binghamton University, New York, owns a 50-year membership in the class struggle, is an adviser to the landless and jobless in Brazil and Argentina, and is co-author of Globalization Unmasked (Zed Books). His latest book is Rulers and Ruled (Bankers, Zionists and Militants (Clarity Press, Atlanta: 2007).

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