Why the United States Invaded Iraq and is
Now Thinking About Invading Iran
by Dr. Abbas
12 May 2006:
April 28, the IAEA released its report on Iran. The IAEA reported that:
"the Agency cannot make a judgment about, or reach a conclusion on, future
compliance or intentions." The report came as no surprise to those who
have been following the ongoing dispute between Iran, United States and
The United States,
for quite some time now, has been accusing Iran of trying to develop
nuclear weapons and Iran has been insisting that its intentions are
peaceful and that it is only interested in peaceful use of the nuclear
energy. Iran, to allay the international community's fear, froze its
enrichment program and started a series of negotiations with the U.K.,
Germany, and France. However, without the United States these negotiations
were not going to produce any results, since it was only the United States
that could address the Iranian's national security concerns. Iranian
seeing themselves surrounded by American forces wanted a security
guarantee that United States would not invade Iran, something that United
States was not prepared to give. So the negotiations with the European
three failed and Iran resumed its enrichment program. Iran was threatened
with Security Council and even invasion without any effect. Now once again
there is talk of a Security Council resolution under article 7 and
continuous threats of invasion. There have even been talks of tactical
nuclear strike on suspected Iranian nuclear facilities.
All these events are
reminiscent of the negotiations and threats preceding the invasion of
Iraq. The unfolding events are so similar that it makes one wonder if the
Iraq scenario is not being used as a template for Iran. And with what has
come to light since the Iraq invasion, we have to assume that like Iraq,
the decision to invade Iran has already been taken, and that the E.U.
Three negotiations and the IAEA are being used to prepare the public for
that event. There are already reports of increased U.S. provocations along
Iranian borders such as flying unmanned surveillance flight over Iran, and
the insertion of commandos into Iran for intelligence gathering and other
activities. The talk of invasion is also accompanied by war games. For
example on April 14, USA Today reported: "Amid rising tensions
between the United States and Iran over the future of Iran's nuclear
program, the Pentagon is planning a war game in July so officials can
explore options for a crisis involving Iran." 
But this war game is
not the first of its kind. According to William M. Arkin of the
Washington Post, "In early 2003, even as U.S. forces were on the brink
of war with Iraq, the Army had already begun conducting an analysis for a
full-scale war with Iran. The analysis, called TIRANNT, for "theatre Iran
near term," was coupled with a mock scenario for a Marine Corps invasion
and a simulation of the Iranian missile force. U.S. and British planners
conducted a Caspian Sea war game around the same time. And Bush directed
the U.S. Strategic Command to draw up a global strike war plan for an
attack against Iranian weapons of mass destruction. All of this will
ultimately feed into a new war plan for "major combat operations" against
Iran that military sources confirm now exists in draft form."
But why did the
United States attack Iraq and why is she so keen on attacking Iran now? We
now know that from the beginning, this administration was looking for any
excuse to invade Iraq. Washington has, over time, given a number of
different reasons for invading Iraq: starting with Iraq's developing
Nuclear weapons, to war on terror, to spreading democracy in the Middle
East. All these reasons have proven to be false. Iraq did not possess any
Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD); and did not have any link to Al Qaeda.
And instead of democracy, Iraqis have had to endure Abu Ghraib, car bombs,
and shortage of basic services such as electricity, clean water, and
health care. None of the ministries are functioning properly and in
addition Iraq has to deal with half a million displaced people. There is
also talk of a partitioning of Iraq.  On top of all
this, the Iraqis now face a possible bloody civil war.
After spending over
320 billion dollars for Iraq war (officially so far) and with no end in
sight, why is this administration insisting in starting another
catastrophic war in the Middle East?
There have been a
number of theories put forward by various groups and individuals.
* Crusade --
Some Muslims think that United States has started a crusade against Islam
and is determined to vanquish any and all countries that stand in its way.
* Oil Reserves
-- There are other groups who think that with the oil reserves
diminishing fast, United States is trying to corner all the reserves and
supplies for itself, thereby ensuring its future dominant economic
position in the world.
* China --
There are others who think that an invasion of Iraq and targeting of Iran
is part a geo-political move by United States to block China's emergence
as a world power by restricting its access to oil.
* Israel --
Finally there are those that argue that the United States is doing the
bidding of Israel and getting rid of those that may challenge Israel's
hegemony in the Middle East in the future.
The answer probably
contains some of all of the above.
Every day, Muslims
living in Jakarta, Cairo, Karachi, London, or Detroit, hear and sees
things that seem hostile, if not to them personally, then to other Muslims
across the world.  They have seen the plight of
Palestinians for years without anyone doing anything about it. They are
frustrated by the impotence of their leaders in the face of the
neo-colonialist encroachment of the west. They hear the West talk about
democracy and yet see the West support the very dictators that are
oppressing them. They see in exceptional cases, like Palestine, where
there has been a democratic election, that the West has stepped in to
dismiss the results as not acceptable. They look at their past colonial
masters and fear their return in disguise. They see the wars like Iraq and
the war on terror as excuses for new colonial ambitions of the West. Above
all, they feel that their lives and rights, in the eye of the West, are
worth less than non-Muslims. They are appalled by extrajudicial killings
in Israel, torture of prisoners by Americans, the treatment of the
Guantanamo Bay prisoners, and the ongoing torture of people at the hands
of Western supported dictators as signs that the West, in general, and
America (as the leader), in particular, is on a crusade to subjugate them.
for Oil Reserves
The profits of five
oil companies combined (American: ExxonMobil, Chevron, and Conoco,
European: Shell and British Petroleum) in 2005 was $111 billion. These
profits are about to go through the roof. The reason? Production can not
keep up with demand, and even if it could, there isn't enough oil to
satisfy all, at present prices. Oil companies' valuations are based on
those companies' access to oil reserves. Iraq and Iran combined have over
20% of the world's total proven oil reserves. Imagine what having access
to those reserves will do for the valuation of American oil companies, not
to mention their profits.
There is also the
matter of consumption. United States consumes fully 25 percent of the
world oil supplies. China and India are growing rapidly and their
economies consume more and more oil. China currently consumes 8.2 percent
of the world's oil production. Soon it will increase to 10 or even 14
percent. Where is that oil going to come from? Is United States willing to
reduce its share for China? It is highly improbable.
Figure 1 Oil
consumption. Source: British Petroleum (BP), Statistical Review of
World Energy 2005.
Bush held a television conference where he assured the public that
Americans' dependence on oil would soon be over. He spoke of great new
technologies and fuel sources that were just around the corner. What he
forgot to mention was that there are 600 million cars in the world today
that run on petrol, and it is estimated that if the present trend
continues, by 2030, the number of cars in the world will reach 1.2
Just to change the
engines of the existing 600 million cars will take years, not to mention
all the petrol stations and the support facilities that have to be
modified for this to work. There is also more in a barrel of oil than
petrol for our cars. We need such oil derivatives as jet fuel, kerosene,
lubricants, feedstock, asphalt, etc., for our industries to function.
Currently over 60%
of the world's oil reserves are in Middle East. Four countries in the
region, Saudi Arabia, Iran, Iraq and Kuwait have over half of the world's
proven oil reserves.
If we keep the
world's oil consumption at its current level, then the Middle East can
theoretically supply the world with oil, at its current production rate,
for another 80 years.
Figure 2 World
oil production/reserve. Source Statistical Review of World Energy 2005,
But the fact is that
in 15 years the North American and Asia Pacific oil reserves will be
depleted. This will represent a marked reduction in oil supplies
worldwide. In other words, within 15 years, if we do not increase oil
production drastically in the Middle East and elsewhere, the world will
face tremendous oil shortages. Increasing oil production is not that easy
either. Each oil field has an optimum production rate. If one tries to go
beyond that rate and tries to sustain high production rate, one damages
the oil field and thereby substantially reducing the amount of recoverable
oil. This problem is well documented by the oil industry.
But what about the
new oil discoveries? Well, there have been very little new discoveries;
the future doesn't seem that bright either. According to Energy
Information Administration's (EIA) analysis of the long-term world oil
supply, we can expect to discover only 10% more oil in the future.
 Even this 10% is disputed. The Association for the
Study of Peak Oil and Gas (ASPO), which closely follows the development in
the oil industry, the Foundation of Economic Sustainability (FEASTA), and
others see an alarming trend in the future oil discovery and production.
If one looks at the
amount of oil discovered in the years from 1930 to the present one sees a
clear downward trend in new discoveries; this in spite of using more money
and better technologies.
In March 2005, HIS
energy (an international oil consultancy firm) did a comprehensive
analysis of the world oil supply and demand and reached the following
conclusion: that even if one includes Natural Gas production and all other
liquid fuels in our total available supplies, there will be a shortage
anytime from 2011 to 2020. 
In 1972, Richard
Nixon went to China to secure an ally against the Soviet Union and thereby
shift the balance of power towards the West. Recently, President Bush made
a similar trip to India to enlist it as an ally against China. The United
States sees China as its main strategic competitor, now and in the near
future. The United States is concerned with losing its dominant position
in East Asia to China. Both political and military authorities have voiced
this concern. In the 2006 Quadrennial Defense Review Report, China is
identified as a major concern.
"Of the major and
emerging powers, China has the greatest potential to compete militarily
with the United States and field disruptive military technologies that
could over time offset traditional U.S. military advantages, absent U.S.
counter strategies. China is an emerging world power." 
The report goes on
to point out that the United States should take all necessary steps to (in
the case of hostilities) to deny China its strategic and operational
"The United States
will work to ensure that all major and emerging powers are integrated as
constructive actors and stakeholders into the international system. It
will also seek to ensure that no foreign power can dictate the terms of
regional or global security. It will attempt to dissuade any military
competitor from developing disruptive or other capabilities that could
enable regional hegemony or hostile action against the United States or
other friendly countries, and it will seek to deter aggression or
coercion. Should deterrence fail, the United States would deny a hostile
power its strategic and operational objectives."
To this end United
States is restructuring and repositioning its bases to be better able to
contain China's growing power. It has also revamped its alliance with
Japan and other countries in Southeast Asia. In addition, the United
States is transforming Guam into a hub for long-range bombers and is
planning to add a sixth aircraft carrier to its pacific group.
All these steps are
taken to contain China and limit its ability to move freely in the area.
On top of all this, the United States is positioning itself to control
China 's access to oil. If the United States can control the oil reserves
it will be able to determine not only the economic growth of China but
also limit its strategic ambitions.
There is no doubt
that Israel has a powerful lobby in the United States. There are currently
over 50 Jewish organizations that directly or indirectly lobby for Israel.
The Israeli influence is well known, but few are willing to openly talk
about it, especially in the United States and Europe. The Israeli
dimension is particularly difficult to mention, for if one dares to state
the obvious, one is branded as anti-Semite or a terrorist sympathizer. The
Jewish lobby also can make life very unpleasant for those who dare to
mention the extent of its influence in U.S. and other countries. There are
still a few brave soles such as John Mearsheimer (Professor of Political
Science and the co-director of the Program on International Security
Policy at the University of Chicago) and Stephen Walt (Belfer Professor of
International Relations and Academic Dean of Harvard University) in the
U.S. that are willing to speak-out. In March 2006, they wrote a paper
titled "The Israel Lobby" in which they question the United States
policies in the Middle East. Here is a section of their paper:
about $3 billion in direct assistance each year, roughly one-fifth of the
foreign aid budget, and worth about $500 a year for every Israeli. This
largesse is especially striking since Israel is now a wealthy industrial
state with a per capita income roughly equal to that of South Korea or
Other recipients get
their money in quarterly installments, but Israel receives its entire
appropriation at the beginning of each fiscal year and can thus earn
interest on it. Most recipients of aid given for military purposes are
required to spend all of it in the US, but Israel is allowed to use
roughly 25 per cent of its allocation to subsidise its own defence
industry. It is the only recipient that does not have to account for how
the aid is spent, which makes it virtually impossible to prevent the money
from being used for purposes the US opposes, such as building settlements
on the West Bank. Moreover, the US has provided Israel with nearly $3
billion to develop weapons systems, and given it access to such top-drawer
weaponry as Blackhawk helicopters and F-16 jets. Finally, the US gives
Israel access to intelligence it denies to its Nato allies and has turned
a blind eye to Israel's acquisition of nuclear weapons.
provides Israel with consistent diplomatic support. Since 1982, the US has
vetoed 32 Security Council resolutions critical of Israel, more than the
total number of vetoes cast by all the other Security Council members. It
blocks the efforts of Arab states to put Israel's nuclear arsenal on the
IAEA's agenda. The US comes to the rescue in wartime and takes Israel 's
side when negotiating peace. The Nixon administration protected it from
the threat of Soviet intervention and resupplied it during the October
War. Washington was deeply involved in the negotiations that ended that
war, as well as in the lengthy “step-by-step” process that followed, just
as it played a key role in the negotiations that preceded and followed the
1993 Oslo Accords. In each case there was occasional friction between US
and Israeli officials, but the US consistently supported the Israeli
position. One American participant at Camp David in 2000 later said: “Far
too often, we functioned . . . as Israel's lawyer.” Finally, the
Bush administration's ambition to transform the Middle East is at least
partly aimed at improving Israel's strategic situation. 
John Mearsheimer and
Stephen Walt are not anti-Semites nor are they uninformed individuals.
What they are saying is that United States' Middle Eastern policy is in
the interest of Israel and counterproductive for the United States.
We now know that as
soon as the Bush administration came to power, it started looking for an
excuse to invade Iraq. It used every possible propaganda tool under the
sun to get the UN to sanction the invasion of Iraq, and when it didn't
succeed, it went ahead and invaded Iraq anyway. The people in U.S. pushing
for an invasion, the so-called Neo-Cons were at the forefront of
disseminating misinformation in anyway they could. But to understand part
of their agenda we have to go back to 1996.
In 1996 the newly
elected prime minister of Israel Benjamin Netanyahu commissioned a study
group called "Study Group on a New Israeli Strategy Toward 2000" to craft
a strategy for Israel in the coming decades. The Institute for Advanced
Strategic and Political Studies' which included Richard Perle, James
Colbert, Charles Fairbanks, Douglas Feith, Robert Loewenberg, David
Wurmser, and Meyrav Wurmser, created the Israel's strategy paper titled:
"A Clean Break: A New Strategy for Securing the Realm." 
The paper contains
six pages of recommendations for Benjamin Netanyahu and some of the more
relevant suggestions are presented below:
* We have for four
years pursued peace based on a New Middle East. We in Israel cannot play
innocents abroad in a world that is not innocent. Peace depends on the
character and behaviour of our foes. We live in a dangerous neighborhood,
with fragile states and bitter rivalries. Displaying moral ambivalence
between the effort to build a Jewish state and the desire to annihilate it
by trading "land for peace" will not secure "peace now." Our claim to the
land -- to which we have clung for hope for 2000 years -- is legitimate
and noble. It is not within our own power, no matter how much we concede,
to make peace unilaterally. Only the unconditional acceptance by Arabs
of our rights, especially in their territorial dimension, "peace for
peace," is a solid basis for the future.
* Syria challenges Israel on Lebanese soil. An effective approach, and one
with which American can sympathize, would be if Israel seized the
strategic initiative along its northern borders by engaging Hezbollah,
Syria, and Iran, as the principal agents of aggression in Lebanon,
* striking Syria 's
drug-money and counterfeiting infrastructure in Lebanon , all of which
focuses on Razi Qanan.
* paralleling Syria
's behaviour by establishing the precedent that Syrian territory is not
immune to attacks emanating from Lebanon by Israeli proxy forces. *
striking Syrian military targets in Lebanon , and should that prove
insufficient, striking at select targets in Syria proper.
* Work closely
with Turkey and Jordan to contain, destabilize, and roll-back some of its
most dangerous threats. This implies clean break from the
slogan, "comprehensive peace" to a traditional concept of strategy based
on balance of power.
* Change the nature of its relations with the Palestinians,
including upholding the right of hot pursuit for self-defense into all
Palestinian areas and nurturing alternatives to Arafat's exclusive grip on
Given the nature of
the regime in Damascus, it is both natural and moral that Israel abandon
the slogan "comprehensive peace" and move to contain Syria, drawing
attention to its weapons of mass destruction program, and rejecting "land
for peace" deals on the Golan Heights.
* Israel can shape
its strategic environment, in cooperation with Turkey and Jordan, by
weakening, containing, and even rolling back Syria. This effort
can focus on removing Saddam Hussein from power in Iraq -- an important
Israeli strategic objective in its own right -- as a means of foiling
Syria's regional ambitions. Jordan has challenged Syria's regional
ambitions recently by suggesting the restoration of the Hashemites in
Iraq. This has triggered a Jordanian-Syrian rivalry to which Assad has
responded by stepping up efforts to destabilize the Hashemite Kingdom,
including using infiltrations. Syria recently signalled that it and Iran
might prefer a weak, but barely surviving Saddam, if only to undermine and
humiliate Jordan in its efforts to remove Saddam.
It is interesting to
note that many of the co-authors of this strategy paper are Jewish
Americans and not Israelis. Below you will find a very short description
of a few co-authors.
Richard Perle has
served in important government posts under various administrations. He was
Secretary of Defense under Reagan administration and Chairman of the
Defense policy Advisory Committee (2001-2003) under Bush Administration.
He is also the signatory of Project for the New American Century, a
think-tank institute and one of the main organizations pushing for
invasion of Iran. Perle is currently a resident fellow at the conservative
think-tank American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research. He
sits also on the board of advisors of Jewish Institute for National
Security Affairs (JINSA).
Douglas Faith served
at Defense Department as Undersecretary of Defense for Policy, under
Donald Rumsfeld and Paul Wolfowitz. Feith had previously served in the
Reagan administration, starting off as Middle East specialist at the
National Security Council (1981-82) and then transferring to the Defense
Department where he spent two years as staff lawyer for Assistant Defense
Secretary Richard Perle. He is the director of Foundation for Jewish
Studies, and former advisor to Jewish Institute for National Security
David Wurmser, Dick
Cheney's Middle East adviser, was the Special Adviser to Under Secretary
of State for Arms Control and International Security (2001-2003). He is
also member of Board of Directors of U.S. Committee for a Free Lebanon.
One can produce a
very long list of influential people in United States (e.g., Paul
Wolfowitz -- current World Bank President and Undersecretary of Defense
for Policy from 1989-93) that work very hard to safeguard Israel's
Israel 's Strategy
Since the election
of George Bush to power we see that this Israeli strategy paper has served
as a template for U.S. foreign policy in Middle East. Now let us examine
each suggestion in the paper and the events in the Middle East.
1. Only the
unconditional acceptance by Arabs of our rights, especially in their
territorial dimension, "peace for peace," is a solid basis for the future.
During Mr. Bush's
presidency, Israel has abandoned the concept of "Land for Peace" and
concentrated instead on unilaterally drawing the borders of a future
Palestine. This is being done by first constructing a so called "security
wall" separating Israel from Palestine, and then declaring that wall as
the international border separating the two states. The "Peace for Peace"
means that Israel will increase the pressure on Palestinians by such a
degree that Palestinians will come to Israel, hat in hand, begging not for
land but for peace. In this way Israel will determine the size and shape
of the future Palestinian state. This has been and is supported by United
States. The current strangulation of the Palestinian Economy is part of
2. An effective
approach, and one with which American can sympathize, would be if Israel
seized the strategic initiative along its northern borders by engaging
Hezbollah, Syria, and Iran, as the principal agents of aggression in
This has been done
through news media and United Nations where United States has tried hard
to isolate Syria and even have put sanctions on the country. United States
has also tried, by pressuring the Lebanese government, to isolate
Hezbollah and reduce its power within the Lebanese society. Syria has
claimed that former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafiq Harriri was assassinated
by Israeli agents to damage its reputation in Lebanon. It is interesting
to note that this assassination was one of the main reasons that Syria was
forced to leave Lebanon. It was also used to try to impose U.N. sanctions
3. Work closely
and Jordan to contain, destabilize, and rollback some of its most
dangerous threats. This implies clean break from the slogan,
"comprehensive peace" to a traditional concept of strategy based on
balance of power.
relationship with Turkey prior to the Iraqi invasion was improving
rapidly. Turkey knows that it needs United States backing in its
negotiations with the European Union. It also needs the United States'
help in restructuring its $200+ billion loans. Therefore for Turkey it was
a good idea to accept a close partnership with Israel. Currently Israeli
pilots carry out air exercises in Turkey and rumors have it that they even
spy on Iran from Turkey.
Israel (behind the
scenes) has traditionally had a good relationship with Jordan. Israel
hoped that after invasion of Iraq, the former crown prince Hassan of
Jordan would become King of Iraq. The Jewish Daily Forward of New
York reported on August 9 2002, the following:
said some Bush administration officials are indeed rooting for Hassan at a
time when Washington is struggling to find a consensus leader to succeed
Saddam. After the London meeting, the London-based Guardian newspaper
reported that Hassan had the backing of Pentagon hawks and that he met in
April in Washington with one of their most prominent figures, Deputy
Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz.
4. This effort
can focus on removing Saddam Hussein from power in Iraq -- an
important Israeli strategic objective in its own right
Here we see that
Israel's strategy as presented in the document is the removal of Saddam
Hussein from power. Israel could not do this on its own. But again Israel
didn't have to. United States achieved the strategic objective of Israel,
without Israel spending a single dollar.
So far Israel has
achieved most of its main objective except completely neutralizing
Hezbollah, Iran and Syria. Israel has been partly successful in weakening
and isolating Syria, however, the Syrian government remains in place and
still supports the Palestinians. The Iranian government is still there,
supporting Syria, Hezbollah and the Palestinians. The main problem for the
Israelis then is Iran. If Iran is neutralized, then no one is left to back
Hezbollah, and Syria is left totally at the mercy of Israel. Then Israel
can play the "Peace for Peace" game with Syria.
By occupying and
breaking large centers of power in the Middle East such as Iraq and Iran,
Israel will be left the dominating power for a very long time. Iraq is now
fractured into many pieces and in near future will not be able to support
Palestinians in any meaningful way or cause Israel any problem. If Iran is
also occupied and made into a federation, like Iraq, the internal strife
will be such that it (Iran) too will not be able to do anything.
Israel and Something for the United States
But the architects
of these wars have to, at the end of the day, have something tangible to
show the American people for all the blood and money that United States
has spent in these ventures. The answer of course is oil. Now that the war
in Iraq has gone badly wrong, and the threat to Iran has pushed oil prices
to above 70 dollars per barrel, people are thinking that maybe it will not
be a bad idea for the U.S. to do something to bring the prices down.
If the United States
can occupy Iran, or at least change the regime in Iran to something that
is subservient to the American interests, then the U.S. can have over half
of the world's oil reserves under its control. There are four countries in
the Middle East, that combined, have over 50% of the world's proven oil
reserves. These countries are: Iraq, Iran, Kuwait and Saudi Arabia. The
United States directly or indirectly controls 3 of the 4 countries, and if
it can get the fourth then it will have its cake and can eat it too. But
to control means to be close enough to be able to protect or threaten the
governments in those countries. This necessitates the presence of American
bases on those territories or close by.
United States has
bases in most of the Persian Gulf countries such as Qatar, Bahrain,
Kuwait, and now is planning permanent bases in Iraq. With regard to Iraq,
the United State is trying to give the impression that it is interested to
leave as soon as possible, but all evidence points to the contrary.
Speaking to United
States' House Appropriations subcommittee, U.S. foreign Secretary
Condoleezza Rice said, "The presence in Iraq is for a very clear purpose,
and that's to enable Iraqis to be able to govern themselves." She added,
"I don't think that anybody believes that we really want to be there
longer than we have to."
Her comments were
echoed by US ambassador to Iraq Zalmay Khalilzad:
US ambassador to
Iraq Zalmay Khalilzad said Saturday that his country did not want
permanent military bases in Iraq and that he was willing to talk to Iran
about the war-torn country's future.
"We want Iraq to
stand on its own feet, we have no goal of establishing permanent bases
here," he said in an interview with Iraq's Ash-Sharqiya television,
according to a transcript obtained by AFP.
But these statements
are pure lies. There are a number of reports indicating that United States
is building large permanent military bases across Iraq.
A report in
Newsweek said that the 38 square kilometers mini-city and airport in
Balad was the evidence that American forces were preparing for to stay in
Iraq for a long time. Michael Hirsh of Newsweek wrote:
If you want an image
of what America's long-term plans for Iraq look like, it's right here at
Balad. Tucked away in a rural no man's land 43 miles north of Baghdad,
this 15-square-mile mini-city of thousands of trailers and vehicle depots
is one of four "super bases" where the Pentagon plans to consolidate U.S.
forces, taking them gradually from the front lines of the Iraq war.
At a White House
press conference on 21 March 2006, President George W. Bush was asked if
there would be a day when there were no more American forces in Iraq. He
replied that that would be "decided by future presidents and future
governments of Iraq." This suggested that the US would continue the
occupation of Iraq for years, if not decades, to come.
On 2 April this
year, the Independent wrote:
The Pentagon has
revealed that coalition forces are spending millions of dollars
establishing at least six "enduring" bases in Iraq -- raising the prospect
that U.S. and U.K. forces could be involved in a long-term deployment in
the country. It said it assumed British troops would operate one of the
In addition to the
bases, the U.S. is building the world's largest embassy in Baghdad.
Iran 's Nuclear
Let us be clear
about this: Iran does not posses Nuclear weapons. Everyone, even in
Washington, agrees on this. Even the Director of the United States
National Intelligence John Negroponte estimates that in spite of Iran's
declaration that it has managed to enrich uranium, Iran will not have a
bomb until four to nine years from now.
The main argument
against Iran is that Iran is enriching Uranium. Under "Treaty on the
Non-proliferation of Nuclear Weapons" (NPT) , all
members are guaranteed the right to enrich Uranium. Article four of the
treaty states that:
"Nothing in this
Treaty shall be interpreted as affecting the inalienable right of all the
Parties to the Treaty to develop research, production and use of nuclear
energy for peaceful purposes without discrimination and in conformity with
articles I and II of this Treaty."
This clearly gives
Iran and other member states the right to do research and enrich uranium.
So what Iran does is totally legal. In contrast we see that all the
nuclear states such as England, Russia, China, France, and United States
are in violation of this treaty. The treaty clearly states that Nuclear
powers have to disarm.
"Desiring to further
the easing of international tension and the strengthening of trust between
States in order to facilitate the cessation of the manufacture of nuclear
weapons, the liquidation of all their existing stockpiles, and the
elimination from national arsenals of nuclear weapons and the means of
their delivery pursuant to a Treaty on general and complete disarmament
under strict and effective international control."
Not only have
nuclear powers not reduced their nuclear weapons research and development
activities but some have openly threaten non-nuclear states with nuclear
constantly reminds us that he considers using nuclear weapons against
Iran. For example, on 12 April 2006, Reuters reported that President
George W. Bush once again had refused to rule out nuclear strikes on Iran.
refused on Tuesday to rule out nuclear strikes against Iran if diplomacy
fails to curb the Islamic Republic's atomic ambitions…
Speculation about a
U.S. attack has mounted since a report in the New Yorker magazine
said this month that Washington was mulling the option of using tactical
nuclear weapons to knock out Iran's subterranean nuclear sites.
Even president of
France has stated that his country will use nuclear weapons to "safeguard"
French "interests." In an address to the strategic submarine forces (FOST)
at the Ile Longue nuclear submarine base in Brittany on 19 January, Chirac
said the "perception" of the country's "vital interests" had changed with
the world's growing interdependence. "For example, the guarantee of our
strategic supplies or the defense of our allies are, among others,
interests that are to be protected," he said. Chirac said it is up to the
president of the Republic, himself, until at least next year to determine
whether a given "aggression, threat, or unacceptable blackmail" has
consequences that bring it within France's "vital interests" and thus
could unleash the nuclear deterrent. 
is very interesting since none of these countries are threatened and they
clearly that they will use nuclear weapons to protect their "interests."
While Iran is being
threatened with sanctions, military invasion and nuclear attack, others
are rewarded for going nuclear. India, which has not even signed the NPT
and has tested nuclear weapons, is rewarded with access to new nuclear
technologies, weapons and even lucrative trade deals.
Pakistan the creator
of Taliban and home of the famous Dr. A.Q. Khan -- black market nuclear
technology salesman -- is similarly rewarded with brand new F16s (capable
of delivering nuclear weapons) and financial aid.
nuclear bombs are the best-known secret in the world. On 12 October 2003,
the Guardian newspaper reported that Israeli and American officials
have admitted deploying U.S.-supplied Harpoon cruise missiles armed with
nuclear warheads in Israel's fleet of Dolphin-class submarines.
Israeli and American
officials have admitted collaborating to deploy US-supplied Harpoon cruise
missiles armed with nuclear warheads in Israel's fleet of Dolphin-class
submarines, giving the Middle East's only nuclear power the ability to
strike at any of its Arab neighbors.
disclosure came as Israel announced that states “harboring terrorists” are
legitimate targets, responding to Syria's declaration of its right to
self-defense should Israel bomb its territory again.
We all know that US,
UK, France and even peaceful Norway helped Israel to develop nuclear
And then we have the
Brazilian nuclear activities to consider. Associated press reported on 22
April that: "The government-run Industrias Nucleares do Brasil S A has
been conducting final tests at the enrichment plant, built on a former
coffee plantation in Resende, 145 km west of Rio de Janeiro. When it opens
this year, Brazil will join the world's nuclear elite." 
So where are the IAEA, and Security Council? Brazil is doing exactly the
same thing that Iran is.
Let us face the
truth, Just like Iraq, all the talk about Iranian nuclear activities is a
smoke screen for something else. The most likely answer is a combination
of the United States strategic interest in oil, containment of China and
Israeli interest. But in 2006 governments are understandably shy about
mentioning neo-colonialism and greed as the reasons for invading other
* Abbas Bakhtiar
lives in Norway and is currently writing a book about the reasons behind
the United States involvement in Iraq and Iran. He's a former associate
professor of Nordland University in Norway. He can be reached at:
 USA Today,
game will focus on situation with Iran," April 4, 2006.
Pentagon Preps for Iran,"
Sunday, April 16, 2006.
Seattle Times, "Strategy
of dividing Iraq starting to make sense, some officers, analysts say,"
Monday, May 1, 2006.
Media Watch, "Egyptian
TV promotes anti-American hatred," April 30, 2006.
 Stein, Jay.
New car for Better Future: Driving Us Crazy, Earthgreen, 1990.
 United States
Energy Information Administration (EIA), "Long-Term
World Oil Supply Scenarios," Washington, DC, Aug 18, 2004.
 IHS Energy,
"Global oil supply issues: recent trends and future possibilities," 2
Defense Review Report, p. 29, February 6, 2006.
Defense Review Report, p. 30, February 6, 2006.
Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt, "The
Israel Lobby," London Book Review, Vol. 28 No. 6
dated 23 March 2006.
 Institute for
Advanced Strategic and Political Studies, 8 July 1996, Richard Perle et
 News Channel
dismisses talk of permanent U.S. bases in Iraq."
vows no permanent bases in Iraq," Sunday, March 12, 2006.
International Edition, "Stuck
in the Hot Zone," May 1, 2006 issue.
Independent online edition, “US
and UK forces establish 'enduring bases' in Iraq," April 2,
Atomic Energy Agency, "TREATY ON THE NON-PROLIFERATION OF NUCLEAR
WEAPONS," Information Circular, 22 April 1970.
 Reuters, "Bush
declines to exclude nuclear strike on Iran," Tuesday, April
18, 2006 11:07 AM ET.
MacLachlan, Nucleonics Week, "Chirac
shifts French doctrine for use of nuclear weapons," January
deploys nuclear arms in submarines," Sunday October 12,
Press, "Brazil follows Iran's nuclear path, but without the fuss,"
Saturday, April 22, 2006.