Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Is Iran Really a Threat?

Israel’s former Prime Minister Ehud Olmert says it is “definitely not” time to attack Iran. Former Mossad Chief Meir Dagan and former Shin Bet chief Yuval Diskin similarly caution against Netenyahu’s impulse for military action. Sixty-three percent of Israelis oppose a unilateral strike on Iran.

What do these voices of restraint know that western hawks, and much of the American public, don’t seem to comprehend? Perhaps that Iran is not nearly the threat its enemies have made it out to be.

In the decade since Bush’s “axis of evil” speech, neocons have called for war with Iran. They have portrayed Iran as a nuclear threat. The propaganda has been effective. A poll two years ago found that 71 percent of Americans believed Iran already had nukes.

Yet American and international authorities never claim such a thing. The International Atomic Energy Agency has consistently verified the “non-diversion” of Iran’s nuclear resources from civilian to military use. In 2007, the National Intelligence Estimate under Bush concluded Iran was not pursuing nukes. President Obama’s Director of National Intelligence agreed with these findings in 2009. Just this year, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said unambiguously that Iran has neither been working on nuclear weapons nor shows any intention of building them.

Just as 70 percent of Americans polled once thought Saddam was behind 9/11, though Bush never made this claim, a strikingly similar percentage of Americans believe Iran has nuclear weapons even though neither Bush nor Obama ever said so.

Full article: http://www.huffingto … politics&ir=Politics

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