nuclear weapons capability

0

“Oh what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to deceive.” William Shakespeare

Peers, Shakespeare also wrote:  “What fools these mortals be.”  He could have found a nicer way to say that.  No matter what a person has to say he or she can always find a nicer way to say it.

You will notice that I’ve highlighted only two words in the short article pasted below.  Fortunately, Jeffrey Blankfort has already spoken out on this issue.  So has CNI’s Philip Giraldi.  Noam Chomsky will probably have something new to say about AIPAC’s shenanigans in the near future.

Bear in mind that AIPAC’s website is www.aipac.org….  Please read on to learn more about AIPAC.

Peace, Roy

P.S.   The next-to-last paragraph will explain the headline.  Peers, let’s strike a blow for freedom.  Let’s Contact The White House

AMERICAN FREE PRESS • JUNE 4, 2012

Congressmen voting against bill will face retribution

The House of Representatives passed, by a vote of 401-11 on May 17, a resolution to tie the president’s hands on Iran policy. The resolution reportedly was the centerpiece of AIPAC’s recent Washington, D.C. conference.

Most of the language in House Res.568 is standard boilerplate—denouncing Iran as a “state sponsor of terrorism” that is on the road to nuclear weapons capability.

However, according to the website OccupyWallSt.org, the resolution “urges the president to reaffirm the unacceptability of an Iran with nuclear-weapons capability and opposition to any policy that would rely on containment as an option.

. . . That means that the only acceptable response to a nuclear-armed or nuclear-capable Iran is not containment but its opposite: war.”

In a nutshell, the bill paints the White House into a corner, removing negotiation and containment as tools for coercing Iran into giving up its nuclear aspirations. Whatever one may think about nuclear energy, AIPAC’s ploy is a dangerous game that could likely place the United States on a path to confrontation with the Persian state. As AFP has opined in many commentaries and editorials, an attack on Iran would be devastating for the nearly bankrupt United States and would result in this country suffering a terrible loss of life, wealth and goodwill around the world.

“In fact, 13,000 AIPAC delegates were dispatched to Capitol Hill, on the last day of the conference, with instructions to tell the senators and representatives whom they met that supporting this resolution was number one on AIPAC’s election year agenda,” noted OccupyWallSt.org….

The matter had been rushed to a floor vote. “Those voting ‘no’ . . . will pay a price in campaign contributions (the ones they won’t receive) and, very likely, will be smeared as ‘anti-Israel.’ That is how it works,” the same article added.

A companion bill is now making the rounds in the Senate.

0

Dan Stone writes: This is the latest neo-con, Senate war-monger trick to sucker us into another attack on a small country that poses no real threat to the u.s., or even israel. These “American Terrorists in Congress” are on steroids due to the lack of sufficient opposition to them over the past decade. Yet we, the people, remain the only ones who can stop them, if we can give up our “enemies-everywhere” paranoia with which they have infected us.

Image001

Senator Joe Lieberman

Does AIPAC want war?

by Robert Naiman, Policy Director at Just Foreign Policy

Last Modified: Feb 19, 2012

If a bill pushed by Lieberman passes, it could give the US “political authorisation for military force” against Iran.

_____________

Washington, DC – For all it has done to promote confrontation between the United States and Iran, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee has worked to avoid the public perception that AIPAC is openly promoting war. In AIPAC’s public documents, the emphasis has always been on tougher sanctions. (If you make sanctions “tough” enough – an effective embargo – that is an act of war, but it is still at one remove from saying that the US should start bombing.)

But a new Senate effort to move the goalposts of US policy to declare it “unacceptable” for Iran to develop a nuclear weapons capability – not a nuclear weapon, but the technical capacity to create one – gives AIPAC the opportunity to make a choice which all can observe. If the Lieberman resolution becomes an “ask” for AIPAC lobbyists at the March AIPAC policy conference, then the world will know: AIPAC is lobbying Congress for war with Iran.

US intelligence suggests no Iranian nukes

Sponsors of the Lieberman resolution deny that it is an “authorisation for military force”, and in a legal, technical sense, they are absolutely correct: it is not a legal authorisation for military force. But it is an attempt to enact a political authorisation for military force. It is an attempt to pressure the administration politically to move forward the tripwire for war, to a place indistinguishable from the status quo that exists today. If successful, this political move would make it impossible for the administration to pursue meaningful diplomatic engagement with Iran, shutting down the most plausible alternative to war.

The first “resolved” paragraph of the Lieberman resolution affirms that it is a “vital national interest” of the United States to prevent Iran from acquiring a “nuclear weapons capability”.

The phrase “vital national interest” is a “term of art”. It means something that the US should be willing to go to war for. Recall the debate over whether the US military intervention in Libya was a “vital national interest” of the United States (which Defence Secretary Robert Gates said it wasn’t.) It was a debate over whether the bar was met to justify the United States going to war.

The resolution seeks to establish it as US policy that a nuclear weapons capability – not acquisition of a nuclear weapon, but the technical capacity to create one – is a “red line” for the United States. If the US were to announce to Iran that achieving “nuclear weapons capability” is a red line for the US, the US would be saying that it is ready to attack Iran with military force in order to try to prevent Iran from crossing this “line” to achieve “nuclear weapons capability”.

And this is reportedly being openly discussed by the bill’s sponsors.

Senators from both parties said Thursday that a diplomatic solution was still the goal and they believed the sanctions on Iran were working, but that a containment strategy was less preferable than a military strike on Iranian nuclear facilities if all else fails.

So, what the Senators are reportedly saying is that if “all else fails” – that is, if diplomacy and sanctions appear to be “failing” to prevent Iran from achieving a nuclear weapons capability – according to these Senators, that’s what “failure” would be – then they want war. That’s not a legal “authorisation of force”, but it is a political one.

And it is not a political authorisation of force in some far-off future. It is a political authorisation of force today.

“Nuclear weapons capability” is a fuzzy term with no legal definition. But Joe Lieberman, a principal author of the bill, has said what he thinks this term means:

“To me, nuclear weapons capability means that they are capable of breaking out and producing a nuclear weapon – in other words, that they have all the components necessary to do that,” Lieberman said. “It’s a standard that is higher than saying ‘The red line is when they actually have nuclear weapons’.”

But many experts think that Iran already has the “components” necessary for “breaking out”.

“To me, nuclear weapons capability means that they are capable of breaking out and producing a nuclear weapon – in other words, that they have all the components necessary to do that.”

– Senator Joseph Lieberman

On Thursday, Anthony Cordesman of the Centre for Strategic and International Studies was quoted saying that the November report from the International Atomic Energy Agency “basically laid out the fact that Iran now has every element of technology needed to make a fission weapon”.

On January 24, Helene Cooper reported in the New York Times:

Several American and European officials say privately that the most attainable outcome for the West could be for Iran to maintain the knowledge and technology necessary to build a nuclear weapon while stopping short of doing so.

This suggests two things. One, these US and European officials believe that Iran already has “the knowledge and technology necessary to build a nuclear weapon”; two, these US and European officials believe that inducing Iran not to use this knowledge and technology to build a nuclear weapon is the best outcome that the West can achieve.

If the experts and Western officials who believe that Iran already has “the knowledge and technology necessary to build a nuclear weapon” are right, then what that says is that Iran has already crossed the “red line” of the Lieberman bill. And therefore, the supporters of the Lieberman bill are saying that they are ready for war today. Or they are ready for war any time that they decide to join the experts and officials who say that Iran has already crossed the Lieberman “red line”, which of course is something that the Lieberman supporters can do anytime they want.

It’s as if someone wearing a bag over their head says, “I’m ready for war whenever I see light”. All they have to do to see light is take the bag off their head, so they are saying that they are ready for war whenever it is convenient for them to say that they are.

Anyone who supports the Lieberman bill is declaring themselves for war. If AIPAC makes the Lieberman bill an “ask” for its March policy conference, then at least we’ll be done with the pretence that AIPAC is doing anything besides trying to get the US into another Middle East war.

_______________________

Robert Naiman is Policy Director at Just Foreign Policy.

Source: Al Jazeera

0

Father Roy writes: There’s an article pasted below which is self-explanatory:  “Does AIPAC Want War?”  All the recent news is connected to the issue of Iran:  U.S. to Israel: Don’t attack Iran.  Every time President Obama disagrees with Bibi, his propaganda machine takes a new tac:   U.S. Jewish author releases alarming account of anti-Semitism in Germany.  More and more Germans are asking “Haven’t we suffered enough?  Have we not paid sufficient retribution?”  Well, a Jewish author in the USA doesn’t think so.  Peers, here’s a story we all need to follow closely: U.N. Nuclear Inspectors Return to Tehran – NYTimes.com….  We’ll notice conflicting reports.  It’s important that we follow this story because tensions in Jerusalem are at a “boiling point”.

Does AIPAC Want War?

If a bill pushed by Lieberman passes, it could give the US “political authorisation for military force” against Iran.

By Robert Naiman

February 19, 2012 “Al Jazeera” — Washington, DC – For all it has done to promote confrontation between the United States and Iran, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee has worked to avoid the public perception that AIPAC is openly promoting war. In AIPAC’s public documents, the emphasis has always been on tougher sanctions. (If you make sanctions “tough” enough – an effective embargo – that is an act of war, but it is still at one remove from saying that the US should start bombing.)

But a new Senate effort to move the goalposts of US policy to declare it “unacceptable” for Iran to develop a nuclear weapons capability – not a nuclear weapon, but the technical capacity to create one – gives AIPAC the opportunity to make a choice which all can observe. If the Lieberman resolution becomes an ask for AIPAC lobbyists at the March AIPAC policy conference, then the world will know: AIPAC is lobbying Congress for war with Iran.

Sponsors of the Lieberman resolution deny that it is an “authorisation for military force”, and in a legal, technical sense, they are absolutely correct: it is not a legal authorisation for military force. But it is an attempt to enact a political authorisation for military force. It is an attempt to pressure the administration politically to move forward the tripwire for war, to a place indistinguishable from the status quo that exists today. If successful, this political move would make it impossible for the administration to pursue meaningful diplomatic engagement with Iran, shutting down the most plausible alternative to war.

The first “resolved” paragraph of the Lieberman resolution affirms that it is a “vital national interest” of the United States to prevent Iran from acquiring a “nuclear weapons capability“.

The phrase “vital national interest” is a “term of art”. It means something that the US should be willing to go to war for. Recall the debate over whether the US military intervention in Libya was a “vital national interest” of the United States (which Defence Secretary Robert Gates said it wasn’t.) It was a debate over whether the bar was met to justify the United States going to war.

The resolution seeks to establish it as US policy that a nuclear weapons capability – not acquisition of a nuclear weapon, but the technical capacity to create one – is a “red line” for the United States. If the US were to announce to Iran that achieving “nuclear weapons capability” is a red line for the US, the US would be saying that it is ready to attack Iran with military force in order to try to prevent Iran from crossing this “line” to achieve “nuclear weapons capability”.

And this is reportedly being openly discussed by the bill’s sponsors.

Senators from both parties said Thursday that a diplomatic solution was still the goal and they believed the sanctions on Iran were working, but that a containment strategy was less preferable than a military strike on Iranian nuclear facilities if all else fails.

So, what the Senators are reportedly saying is that if “all else fails” – that is, if diplomacy and sanctions appear to be “failing” to prevent Iran from achieving a nuclear weapons capability – according to these Senators, that’s what “failure” would be – then they want war. That’s not a legal “authorisation of force”, but it is a political one.

And it is not a political authorisation of force in some far-off future. It is a political authorisation of force today.

“Nuclear weapons capability” is a fuzzy term with no legal definition. But Joe Lieberman, a principal author of the bill, has said what he thinks this term means:

“To me, nuclear weapons capability means that they are capable of breaking out and producing a nuclear weapon – in other words, that they have all the components necessary to do that,” Lieberman said. “It’s a standard that is higher than saying ‘The red line is when they actually have nuclear weapons’.”

But many experts think that Iran already has the “components” necessary for “breaking out”.

On Thursday, Anthony Cordesman of the Centre for Strategic and International Studies was quoted saying that the November report from the International Atomic Energy Agency “basically laid out the fact that Iran now has every element of technology needed to make a fission weapon”

On January 24, Helene Cooper reported in the New York Times:

Several American and European officials say privately that the most attainable outcome for the West could be for Iran to maintain the knowledge and technology necessary to build a nuclear weapon while stopping short of doing so.

This suggests two things. One, these US and European officials believe that Iran already has “the knowledge and technology necessary to build a nuclear weapon”; two, these US and European officials believe that inducing Iran not to use this knowledge and technology to build a nuclear weapon is the best outcome that the West can achieve.

If the experts and Western officials who believe that Iran already has “the knowledge and technology necessary to build a nuclear weapon” are right, then what that says is that Iran has already crossed the “red line” of the Lieberman bill. And therefore, the supporters of the Lieberman bill are saying that they are ready for war today. Or they are ready for war any time that they decide to join the experts and officials who say that Iran has already crossed the Lieberman “red line”, which of course is something that the Lieberman supporters can do anytime they want.

It’s as if someone wearing a bag over their head says, “I’m ready for war whenever I see light”. All they have to do to see light is take the bag off their head, so they are saying that they are ready for war whenever it is convenient for them to say that they are.

Anyone who supports the Lieberman bill is declaring themselves for war. If AIPAC makes the Lieberman bill an ask for its March policy conference, then at least we’ll be done with the pretence that AIPAC is doing anything besides trying to get the US into another Middle East war.

Robert Naiman is Policy Director at Just Foreign Policy.

Link to original article: Robert Naiman: Does AIPAC Want War? Lieberman “Capability” Red Line May Tip AI