Petraeus works to halt foreign fighters. (1 Viewer)

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Petraeus works to halt foreign fighters - Yahoo! News

I'm a little puzzled here.

I'm being told that Iran and Syria are the reasons for instability. Iran. Syria. Iran.

But it turns out that many fighters (and their support ) are also coming from our Arab and Turkish 'allies'?

"I've actually gone to a couple of neighboring countries in an effort, again, to get at the networks, the countries in which they operate, and the sources of some of these foreign fighters," Petraeus said.


Petraeus did not name the countries he visited. The Associated Press has learned that the trips — all taken since last September — were to Jordan, Kuwait, Bahrain, Turkey and the United Arab Emirates.

So, then, how do you point the finger mainly at Iran?

Iran. Iran. Iran.

But everybody else gets diplomacy. Makes perfect sense

Seems like Iran could disappear tomorrow and you still have an insurgency.
 

DadsDream

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So, then, how do you point the finger mainly at Iran?

Iran. Iran. Iran.

1. Because that's the only one that the media is allowed to know about.

The rest of the dealings with other counties are cloaked in secrecy and classified so as to not bring undue backlash or embarrass friendly or semi-friendly governments.

Look at the names on the list of countries he visited...see?

2. No other country in the region is openly defying the UN about developing nuclear technology.

3. We've got a long-standing beef with Iran, dating back to the seizure of the embassy.

4. Iran constantly spouts hate-filled rhetoric against the US.

5. Iran's Revolutionary Guard pulls all kinds of stupid, provocative stunts, then the Iranian government denies involvement.

6. Hezbollah is an Iranian backed and financed international terrorist organization which destabilizes the entire region.
 
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1. Because that's the only one that the media is allowed to know about.

The rest of the dealings with other counties are cloaked in secrecy and classified so as to not bring undue backlash or embarrass friendly or semi-friendly governments.

Look at the names on the list of countries he visited...see?

2. No other country in the region is openly defying the UN about developing nuclear technology.

3. We've got a long-standing beef with Iran, dating back to the seizure of the embassy.

4. Iran constantly spouts hate-filled rhetoric against the US.

5. Iran's Revolutionary Guard pulls all kinds of stupid, provocative stunts, then the Iranian government denies involvement.

6. Hezbollah is an Iranian backed and financed international terrorist organization which destabilizes the entire region.

Actually I think its done in secret because otherwise people might actually begin to understand that the insurgency is broadly based and any alleged direct Iranian involvement is just a part of it and absent same the insurgency would go on.

It's a little difficult to sell the public on war with Iran if they knew that the war would have only marginal impact on the "stability" of Iraq. So, rather than give an honest accounting of the situation, the propaganda drones on about Iran being the root of all problems...

-The hate filled rhetoric flows both ways.

-We've been operating in Iran for years and supporting anti-Shiite terrorists and ethnic separatists.

-Iran is in compliance with the NPT. No evidence uncovered so far to prove it is not. What it refuses to do is suspend its NPT rights, whcih is what is being demanded.

-Hezbollah exists to keep the Israelis or anyone acting on their behalf, out of Lebanon. They have no global ambition that is not focused on that goal.

Isn't it already kind of embarrasing that our allies are sending foreign fighters to Iraq to kill Americans?

Iran is the full scapegoat despite the involvement of 5 or 6 other countries because the Bush administration is looking for a pretext for war with Iran.

That's the bottom line.

Hezbollah has legitimate concerns about Israel's designs on Lebanon, specifially with regard to the Litani river, which the Israelis have always coveted:

http://www.american.edu/ted/ice/litani.htm

http://www.wrmea.com/archives/sept03/0309020.html

Hezbollah, and all Lebanese, might be motivated to mobilize for defense against Israel by such statements as these:

We should prepare to go over to the offensive. Our aim is to smash Lebanon, Trans-Jordan, and Syria. The weak point is Lebanon, for the Moslem regime is artificial and easy for us to undermine. We shall establish a Christian state there, and then we will smash the Arab Legion, eliminate Trans-Jordan; Syria will fall to us. We then bomb and move on and take Port Said, Alexandria and Sinai."

Israeli Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion, May 1948

"When we have settled the land, all the Arabs will be able to do about it will be to scurry around like drugged cockroaches in a bottle."

Raphael Eitan, Chief of Staff of the Israeli Defence Forces, New York Times, 14 April 1983.

After all, the Israeli settlers claim Lebanon as part of "Eretz Yisrael." In thier view it is just a matter of time until Yahweh delivers the Litani River to his chosen people...

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/6666495.stm

The Arab-Israeli dispute is a conflict about land - and maybe just as crucially the water which flows through that land.

The Six-Day War in 1967 arguably had its origins in a water dispute - moves to divert the River Jordan, Israel's main source of drinking water.
Years of skirmishes and sabre rattling culminated in all-out war, with Israel quadrupling the territory it controlled and gaining complete control of double the resources of fresh water.

A country needs water to survive and develop.
In Israel's history, it has needed water to make feasible the influx of huge numbers of Jewish immigrants.

Therefore, on the margins of one of the most arid environments on earth, the available water system had to support not just the indigenous population, mainly Palestinian peasant farmers, but also hundreds of thousands of immigrants.

In addition to their sheer numbers, citizens of the new state were intent on conducting water-intensive commercial agricultural such as growing bananas and citrus fruits.
Shared water

Israel says the 1967 war was forced upon it by the imminent threat of hostile Arab countries and there was no intention to occupy more land or resources.

But the war's outcome left Israel occupying an area not far short of the territory claimed by the founders of the Zionist movement at the beginning of the 20th Century.

In 1919, the Zionist delegation at the Paris Peace Conference said the Golan Heights, Jordan valley, what is now the West Bank, as well as Lebanon's river Litani were "essential for the necessary economic foundation of the country. Palestine must have... the control of its rivers and their headwaters".
 
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DadsDream

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No, I don't buy the "Bush administration is looking for a war pretext" line. People began hyping that concern four years ago and it still hasn't happened. It's not going to happen. Too late now.

Our relations with Iran have been one continuous thread of contempt, mistrust and malignancy for over three decades now.

Let's face it, with his holocaust denials and gay bashing, Ahmadinejad made himself and Iran the focus of the ire of some pretty powerful people and political groups here.

Bush had nothing to do with that.
 
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No, I don't buy the "Bush administration is looking for a war pretext" line. People began hyping that concern four years ago and it still hasn't happened. It's not going to happen. Too late now.

Bill Kristol doesn't necessarily agree:

http://thinkprogress.org/2008/04/10/lieberman-bennett-kristol-iran/

There is still time.

The most likely reasons it hasnt happened are:

1) Admiral Fallon -- now departed -- worked against it from the inside, and

2) The Israelis failed to neutralize Hezbollah in 2006. This threw the timing off because hamstringing Hezbollah and Syria will likely be part of the game.

Anything can still happen. Netanyahu is running around giving propaganda speeches claiming that it is impossible to deter Iran no matter what you do (because they's CRAZY!!!), so they must be attacked.

The desire is there and people are trying to make it happen.
 
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The Bush administration knows what it's doing. Relax. Spend money. Everything will be alright.
 
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Let's face it, with his holocaust denials and gay bashing, Ahmadinejad made himself and Iran the focus of the ire of some pretty powerful people and political groups here.

Bush had nothing to do with that.

Ahmadinejad will be gone soon.
 
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No, I don't buy the "Bush administration is looking for a war pretext" line. People began hyping that concern four years ago and it still hasn't happened. It's not going to happen. Too late now.

Our relations with Iran have been one continuous thread of contempt, mistrust and malignancy for over three decades now.

Let's face it, with his holocaust denials and gay bashing, Ahmadinejad made himself and Iran the focus of the ire of some pretty powerful people and political groups here.

Bush had nothing to do with that.


Pat Buchanan's latest on this, which assesses it about the same as Bill Kristol in terms of what Petraeus said:

http://www.worldnetdaily.com/index.php?pageId=61277

Petraeus points to war with Iran

Posted: April 10, 2008
8:27 pm Eastern
© 2008

The neocons may yet get their war on Iran.

Ever since President Nouri al-Maliki ordered the attacks in Basra on the Mahdi Army, Gen. David Petraeus has been laying the predicate for U.S. air strikes on Iran and a wider war in the Middle East.
Iran, Petraeus told the Senate Armed Services Committee, has "fueled the recent violence in a particularly damaging way through its lethal support of the special groups."

These "special groups" are "funded, trained, armed and directed by Iran's Quds Force with help from Lebanese Hezbollah. It was these groups that launched Iranian rockets and mortar rounds at Iraq's seat of government (the Green Zone) ... causing loss of innocent life and fear in the capital."
Is the Iranian government aware of this – and behind it?
 
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DadsDream

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Would everyone who thinks Iran should be allowed to develop nuclear tipped ballistic missiles with a 4,000 mile range, please raise your hand.

The sources in this London Times story include MIT and Jane's...not to be dismissed as Bush Administration propaganda or hype.

This dovetails with the urgency to get a ballistic missile shield put up in Europe.

THE TIMES (LONDON)
Satellite Photos Show 'Secret Launch Site' for Iran's Long-Range Missiles
Friday, April 11, 2008


The secret site where Iran is suspected of developing long-range ballistic missiles capable of reaching targets in Europe has been uncovered by new satellite photographs.

The imagery has pinpointed the facility from where the Iranians launched their Kavoshgar 1 “research rocket” on Feb. 4, claiming that it was in connection with their space program.

Analysis of the photographs taken by the Digital Globe QuickBird satellite, four days after the launch has revealed a number of intriguing features that indicate to experts that it is the same site where Iran is focusing its efforts on developing a ballistic missile with a range of about 4,000 miles.

A previously unknown missile location, the site, about 143 miles southeast of Tehran, and the link with Iran's long-range program, was revealed by Jane's Intelligence Review after a study of the imagery by a former Iraq weapons inspector. A close examination of the photographs has indicated that the Iranians are following the same path as North Korea, pursuing a space program that enables Tehran to acquire expertise in long-range missile technology.

Geoffrey Forden, a research associate at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, said that there was a recently constructed building on the site, about 130 feet long, which was similar in form and size to the Taepodong long-range missile assembly facility in North Korea.

Avital Johanan, the editor of Jane's Proliferation, said that the analysis of the Iranian site indicated that Tehran may be about five years away from developing a 3,728-mile ballistic missile. This would tie in with American intelligence estimates and underlines why President Bush wants the Polish and Czech components of the U.S. missile defense system to be up and running by 2013.

READ MORE
FOXNews.com - Satellite Photos Show 'Secret Launch Site' for Iran's Long-Range Missiles - International News | News of the World | Middle East News | Europe News
 
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Would everyone who thinks Iran should be allowed to develop nuclear tipped ballistic missiles with a 4,000 mile range, please raise your hand.

The sources in this London Times story include MIT and Jane's...not to be dismissed as Bush Administration propaganda or hype.

This dovetails with the urgency to get a ballistic missile shield put up in Europe.

THE TIMES (LONDON)
Satellite Photos Show 'Secret Launch Site' for Iran's Long-Range Missiles
Friday, April 11, 2008

The secret site where Iran is suspected of developing long-range ballistic missiles capable of reaching targets in Europe has been uncovered by new satellite photographs.

The imagery has pinpointed the facility from where the Iranians launched their Kavoshgar 1 “research rocket” on Feb. 4, claiming that it was in connection with their space program.

Analysis of the photographs taken by the Digital Globe QuickBird satellite, four days after the launch has revealed a number of intriguing features that indicate to experts that it is the same site where Iran is focusing its efforts on developing a ballistic missile with a range of about 4,000 miles.

A previously unknown missile location, the site, about 143 miles southeast of Tehran, and the link with Iran's long-range program, was revealed by Jane's Intelligence Review after a study of the imagery by a former Iraq weapons inspector. A close examination of the photographs has indicated that the Iranians are following the same path as North Korea, pursuing a space program that enables Tehran to acquire expertise in long-range missile technology.

Geoffrey Forden, a research associate at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, said that there was a recently constructed building on the site, about 130 feet long, which was similar in form and size to the Taepodong long-range missile assembly facility in North Korea.

Avital Johanan, the editor of Jane's Proliferation, said that the analysis of the Iranian site indicated that Tehran may be about five years away from developing a 3,728-mile ballistic missile. This would tie in with American intelligence estimates and underlines why President Bush wants the Polish and Czech components of the U.S. missile defense system to be up and running by 2013.

READ MORE
FOXNews.com - Satellite Photos Show 'Secret Launch Site' for Iran's Long-Range Missiles - International News | News of the World | Middle East News | Europe News

Iranian_Missile_Sit_315686a.jpg


What urgency? Why would Iran launch a missile at Europe? There is Zero chance for that. Zero. The Europeans have been their best customers. The Russians are their major business partner and an attack on Europe spreads poision over Russia.

Trying to draw the Europeans into this is ludicrous.

Where's the launch pad? The silo? This looks like if anything an assembly facility.

But we know Iran has medium range missiles already and that they will continue to improve them.

If they develop ICBMs the upshot is that they have a deterrent. We can no longer threaten them. They can play the crazy angle and adopt the MAD posture that we had during the Cold War.

If you want Iran to relinquish its nuclear program then it has to be a regional effort and include bringing Israel's nukes under international monitoring as well.

No self-respecting country is going to sit still while enemies point nukes at its capital and park aircraft carriers off its coast.

You want progress? Start dealing with them like adults and recognize and incorporate into the equation their own legitimate security concerns.

You want the status quo, you want the Iranians to do whatever they neeed to do counter US and Israeli threats, then maintain the status quo.
 
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DadsDream

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Read the article. I trust Jane's assessment.

I'm very, very strongly opposed to getting into a MAD arrangement with a nation state that subsidizes suicide bombers.

The Soviets weren't crazy or stupid. I can't say the same for the Iranians.
 
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Read the article. I trust Jane's assessment.

I'm very, very strongly opposed to getting into a MAD arrangement with a nation state that subsidizes suicide bombers.

The Soviets weren't crazy or stupid. I can't say the same for the Iranians.

Why do we bother?

Let's just give up now since the $15-20 trillion we've spent since 1950
leaves us completely and hopelessy vulnerable to a backward nation with a fraction of wealth, no navy, air force etc.

I hear there's a sale on prayer rugs at Target.

The Iranians aren't crazy either. The Persians are quite shrewd.

I've yet to see them in my lifetime acting in a context where they are not being threatened with war or "regime change" so its hard to guage what an Iran that felt itself secure rather than under seige would look like. You completely discount that where we are now is a result of obverthowing Iran's government and imposing 25 years of brutal repression on them.

How about we take that into account and try to move past it?

Anyway, it's been hundreds of years since the Persians attacked anybody, which, all else being equal, suggests a more realistic state of affairs.

I'd rather not have to rely on MAD with anybody, which is why regional de-nuclearization and a regional approach including ALL countries is the only thing that has a chance of working.

http://www.fas.org/nuke/control/menwfz/index.html

Otherwise the Iranians will continue to do what they think they need to do to guarantee their security and defend their regime from "change" forced from the outside. And as they do so, we and the Israelis will promote those same actions as proof of malicious intent and advocate pre-emptive war.

It's a tried and true formula. It worked great for the Israelis vis-a-vis the Arabs so why not do it again?
 
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Read the article. I trust Jane's assessment.

I'm very, very strongly opposed to getting into a MAD arrangement with a nation state that subsidizes suicide bombers.

The Soviets weren't crazy or stupid. I can't say the same for the Iranians.

Intersting snippet from the article:

Forden said that the Kavoshgar launch did not demonstrate any significant advances in ballistic missile technology. “But it does reveal the likely future development of Iran's missile program,” he said.

So, we know exactly what we knew yesterday and last year. Iran has missiles and is working to advance their technology.

Some insist on interpreting this an intent to lauch a suicide attack and their only solution is to lauch another war.

But basic logic dictates that if you are being threatened with enemies' long range missiles, then you are obliged to try to counter the threat.

This is why the Russians were putting missiles in Cuba, to counter the missiles we put in Turkey on the Soviet border, with a capability to hit Moscow in 10-15 minutes.
 
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Mr. Littlejeans

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Why do we bother?

Let's just give up now since the $15-20 trillion we've spent since 1950
leaves us completely and hopelessy vulnerable to a backward nation with a fraction of wealth, no navy, air force etc.

I hear there's a sale on prayer rugs at Target.

The Iranians aren't crazy either. The Persians are quite shrewd.

I've yet to see them acting in a context where they are not being threatened with war or "regime change" so its hard to guage what an Iran that felt itself secure rather than under seige would look like. You completely discount that where we are now is a result of obverthowing Iran's government and imposing 25 years of brutal repression on them.

How about we take that into account and try to move past it?

Anyway, it's been hundreds of years since the Persians attacked anybody, which, all else being equal, suggests a more realistic state of affairs.

I'd rather not have to rely on MAD with anybody, which is why regional de-nuclearization and a regional approach including ALL countries is the only thing that has a chance of working.

Otherwise the Iranians will continue to do what they think they need to do to guarantee their security. And as they do so, we and the Israleis will promote those actions as proof of malicious intent and advocate pre-emptive war.

http://www.fas.org/nuke/control/menwfz/index.html

It's a tried and true formula. It worked great for the Israelis vis-a-vis the Arabs so why not do it again?


Adder, you're missing the point completely.

Don't you understand that Iran is part of the "Axis of Evil?" Iranians, like most Muslims, are inherently evil? It's in their genes. The "liberales" are trying to convince us that the Iranians are not pre-disposed to want to attack us. They are wrong. Their storming our embassy and taking hostages had nothing to do with our support of the iron-fisted Shah regime. The foisting of Israel into the Arab holy land? A convenient excuse for terrorism!!
Supporting the insurgency? How dare they send weapons and troops into Iraq in order to help expel an invading force! That's OUR turf!!

If you had any sense you would know that there is absolutely NOTHING to gain by dealing diplomatically with Ahmadinnywhatever. It would be a sign of America's weakness. Some say it would be a sign of strength, by showing that we are able to maintain the moral and political high road. HAH!!
//sarcasm off//

Seriously, though Adder, the toughest thing seems to be getting conservatives to look objectively at these situations. It's like we should just ignore the HUGE part that the U.S., Britain, and Israel have played in worsening, and sometimes creating, the conditions that help foment terrorism and aggression. Unless of course you believe that Arabs are just genetically defective and born with a desire to kill. Or that Islam is by definition a call to destroy the rest of the world. I'm not naive enough to think that diplomacy without military force will solve the problems, or that the Iranian government is a bunch of peace-loving persaycats, but it seems that we are SO willing to see the world in oversimplified terms of GOOD GUYS (us) vs. BAD GUYS (muslims.)

Someone asking me why I "hate America" in 5,4,3,2........
 
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Seriously, though Adder, the toughest thing seems to be getting conservatives to look objectively at these situations. It's like we should just ignore the HUGE part that the U.S., Britain, and Israel have played in worsening, and sometimes creating, the conditions that help foment terrorism and aggression. Unless of course you believe that Arabs are just genetically defective and born with a desire to kill. Or that Islam is by definition a call to destroy the rest of the world. I'm not naive enough to think that diplomacy without military force will solve the problems, or that the Iranian government is a bunch of peace-loving persaycats, but it seems that we are SO willing to see the world in oversimplified terms of GOOD GUYS (us) vs. BAD GUYS (muslims.)

Someone asking me why I "hate America" in 5,4,3,2........

Excessive mea culpas are a non-starter. There is research that suggests people are hard wired to have a polticial viewpoint to the right or left. In other words, no matter what the facts, a large part of the U.S. electorate can not acknowlege or internalize American mistakes or failures.

It's not their fault completely because it's just their brain chemistry:

http://forums.military.com/eve/forums/a/tpc/f/409192893/m/2040014541001

DD seems to be wired this way. Certain words or phrases short circuit the synapses and processing of logic is derailed. So, the "my country right or wrong" set just may not be capable of seeing it any other way.

I recall at one point in the 90s Bill Clinton issued an apology for all the destruction wreaked on Central America by the CIA funded wars to restore the United Fruit Company set to power.

http://www.allbusiness.com/central-america/163471-1.html

That did not play well with the right.

Actually, I'm not interested in fulsome mea culpas. It's in the past. Learn from it and move on. That's all I'm asking for.

Actions speak louder than words. Skip the words of regret, the finger pointing and teeth gnashing and move forward with new actions.

Until we can do that, it's hard for me to accurately gauge exactly what the Iranian intent is, since if I was an Iranian and I saw three aircraft carriers off my coast and an army on my border, I have to assume hostile intent and act accordingly.

Likewise if I watch other countries in the region reject the NPT and develop nuclear power and weapons (and attach said nuked to cruise missles placed on submarines patrolling my coast) yet I am told I have to relinquish my rights under the NPT, I see a double standard and my bottom gets chapped.
 
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