The Armageddon Network
How the war party is ginning up war with Iran
(AntiWar.com) -- by Justin Raimondo --
The War Party is bound and determined to drag us, kicking and screaming, into a military conflict with Iran – and they have constructed a vast network of agents inside both parties, and inside the government, to accomplish exactly that.
The nexus of this network is the government of Israel and its intelligence services, which is coordinating an increasingly frantic campaign to bring the Iran issue to a head. From all indications, it appears as if the goal is to ignite the conflict before the 2012 presidential elections.
This is not a covert conspiracy, but rather an open one: the Israelis have threatened, time and again, to take military action against Iran. They claim the Jewish state faces “another Holocaust,” and that Iran poses an “existential threat” to Israel’s very existence. The latest wrinkle is that officials in Tel Aviv reportedly told Defense Secretary Leon Panetta, on a recent visit to Israel, that they wouldn’t necessarily be informing the White House until after the Israelis had launched their fighter jets and missiles.
Perfectly understandable: After all, why should the Israelis – who drain us of $3.5 billion a year in “foreign aid” – give us a few minutes warning of Armageddon? Why should they care that the price of oil would immediately skyrocket to $200 a barrel, and make driving to work an economic impossibility? Such considerations are irrelevant, since every single major politician in America is pledged to maintain the one-sided “special relationship” at all costs. Yes, even at the cost of America’s economic demise, for the oil shock would send our already reeling economy into a tailspin – and it would be a long time before we hit bottom.
Of course, the Israelis may not want to pursue this course to the end: a parasite that kills its host is essentially committing suicide. So while this may be a subject of debate within the Israeli national security establishment, with senior military and intelligence officials disdaining Netanyahu’s attack plans as “the stupidest idea I ever heard,” in America no such discussion is allowed. Listening to the Republican frontrunner last Saturday night, at a “debate” devoted to foreign policy, Mitt Romney sounded as if he were running for President of Israel rather than US commander-in-chief:
“Well, let’s– let’s start back from there and let’s talk about where we are. This is, of course, President Obama’s greatest failing, from a foreign policy standpoint, which is he recognized the gravest threat that America and the world faces – and faced was a nuclear Iran and he did not do what was necessary to get Iran to be dissuaded from their nuclear folly. What he should have done is speak out when dissidents took the streets and say, ‘America is with you.’ And work on a covert basis to encourage the dissidents.”
What “dissidents” is Mitt Romney talking about? Surely not the Green movement, led by figures who have praised Iran’s pursuit of nuclear energy and oppose attempts by the West to stop it. Does Romney even know what he’s talking about? Probably not, but his advisers surely do, and indeed one in particular seems to have a very specific idea of which “dissidents” the Romney administration will be funding and otherwise encouraging.
Mitchell Reiss, president of Washington College in Maryland, and one of Romney’s top foreign policy advisers, has emerged as a spokesman for the Mujaheddin-e-Khalq (MEK), the so-called People’s Mujaheddin of Iran, a weird cult-like group [.pdf] of Iranian exiles generally despised by ordinary Iranians. MEK originated in the early days of the revolution that overthrew the Shah, and its cadres not only participated in the taking of the US embassy, which led to the hostage crisis of 1979, but also carried out assassinations against US diplomats and agents throughout the region. After losing out in the post-revolutionary struggle for power in Tehran, the group fled to Iraq, where they were succored for years by Saddam Hussein, who allowed them to set up military camps from which they conducted terrorist raids on Iran. MEK troops fought alongside the Iraqis in their war with Iran, and were used to ruthlessly suppress rebellions by Shi’ites in southern Iraq. After the US invasion, they were confined to their camp, where they remained a military “asset” in Washington’s ongoing campaign to destabilize Iran...
MEK claims it has foresworn terrorism, but a 2004 FBI report states that a “Los Angeles investigation has determined that the MEK is currently actively involved in planning and executing acts of terrorism.” US diplomatic and intelligence officials maintain the MEK “trained females at Camp Ashraf in Iraq to perform suicide attacks in Karbala.”
For these reasons, and more, the MEK and its numerous front organizations have remained on the US list of terrorist organizations, whose activities are proscribed in the United States. Romney aide Reiss is part of a campaign to get MEK delisted – an effort that is so lavishly funded one wonders where all the money is coming from. There’s no doubt where it’s going to, however: a long list of leading “experts” and prominent politicians in both parties and on both sides of the political spectrum have pocketed hundreds of thousands of dollars in “speaking fees” handed out by an organization apparently flush with cash...
Dozens of prominent figures have been paid huge sums to shill for these former hostage-taking anti-American terrorists, including:
•Andrew Card (another Romney adviser)
•Gen. James Conway
•Gen. Hugh Shelton
•Gen. Peter Pace
•Gen. Wesley Clark
•Gen. Anthony Zinni
And, of course, John Bolton. Even P.J. Crowley, who opposed the delisting campaign while at State – and who claims his speaking fee didn’t influence his speech – was lured by the smell of cold hard cash. “We’ve never seen this kind of money,” says Trita Parsi, of the National Iranian American Council. “At one conference with 10 speakers, if they average $50k a pop, that is half a million dollars just in speaker fees.”
Where is this largesse coming from – and why is it being allowed to influence the American political process if it comes from overseas?
The major coup claimed by the MEK is the revelation of Iran’s previously unknown nuclear facilities at Natanz, but it is widely known that this information was passed on to them by Israel’s intelligence agency: the Mossad and the MEK have a longstanding history of cooperation. The recent bombing at an Iranian missile base, which killed 21 Iranian soldiers, is being attributed to the MEK, and the Iranians charge the mysterious “terrorist” plot targeting the Saudi ambassador in Washington and supposedly planned by Iran was actually set up by the Rajavi cultists.
The Israel lobby is an octopus with many tentacles, of which MEK is merely one: they are all attached to the same body, however, and that is the government of Israel, and its intelligence services. If, in some alternative universe where Congress isn’t “Israeli-occupied territory” our lawmakers followed the money, I have no doubt the cash flow could be traced back to its source.
The results of such an investigation would hardly be shocking. Israel is waging an intense campaign to drag us into war on their behalf, and they aren’t trying to hide it. What they are intent on hiding, however, is the way in which our Congress, our public officials, and our political culture are being bought off by their proxies. We ship billions to Tel Aviv, and they ship it back to us in the form of propaganda and relentless pressure to bend the White House and Congress to their will...MORE...LINK