The UK's Daily Telegraph, beloved of American neocons because it can always be relied upon as a plausible overseas placement for all their propaganda (which can then in turn be cited by US rightwing pundits), is ready - I would say eager - for war with Iran.
"The amount of effort we are putting into this single issue is unprecedented in the history of the State of Israel," said a senior Israeli security official who works on the strategic committee that has been set up to deal with the Iran threat, which is personally chaired by Olmert.Has Congress been briefed on this? How senior are the US officials helping an ally plan an attack on a nation with which there has been no official US declaration of war?
Then there's this jawdropper, also from Con Coghlin:
Israel is negotiating with the United States for permission to fly over Iraq as part of a plan to attack Iran's nuclear facilities, The Daily Telegraph can reveal.If true, then this report alone explains a lot about why the US mission in Iraq has turned into a quagmire. By the looks of it, no-one has thought to ask the Iraqi government's permission. There's your "sovereignty" right there.
Update The Israelis have denied everything, and this actually manages to make the story intruiging rather than just a crazy report that was then found to be false. The Washington Post reports:
Asked if Israel had turned to the U.S. to use Iraqi airspace in any possible attack, Ephraim Sneh [Israel's deputy defense minister] told Israel Radio: "No such approach has been made -- that is clear."The idea that the Daily Telegraph and Con Coghlin might carry water for those who don't want to "take steps" against Iran is ridiculous, laughable, ludicrous. It's like suggesting Bill Kristol would shill for Howard Dean. You don't have to be more than a casual reader to figure that much out.
But the dpa German Press Agency (via Raw Story) also reports Sneh as saying the Daily Telegraph's story was ""being propagated by those in the West wanting to avoid directly dealing with the Iranian matter." Now that could be taken as a slap at those who don't want to try peace at all and would rather go right to war with Iran - the American and Israeli extreme rightwings. That, in the context of anything written by Coghlin, makes far more sense.
So what really happened? I see two possibilities - because Coghlin doesn't actually make stuff up out of whole cloth, he's just extremely careful about who his sources are and how he spins both their importance and their words. Either the neocons of both nations arranged for Coghlin to quote an anonymous Israeli zealot and overstepped the mark, or Coghlin's report was an Israeli agitprop story plant - in both cases the story was designed to ratchet up the pressure on Iran as well as provide just a little more grease on the slippery slope to war.
Update Here comes the uber-right noise machine. Jules Crittenden, who never ever saw a war he didn't like:
If another aircraft carrier group in the Gulf and a couple of detentions in Iraq made Ahmadinejad sound like a flower child, this news ought to make him start sounding like Gandhi...I highly doubt the Israelis are going to do this. But you never know. Meanwhile, it should be interesting to see what the affect will be of telling the Iranians the Israelis want to do this.This, apparently, before he's seen the reports of Israel's denial. That's uncommonly perceptive of Jules. One might suspect he knew in advance...
Above I said there were two possibilities. It occurs to me that both could be right. The Israeli government could well have known that a swift denial would defuse any political fall-out between Iraq and the US while still allowing the possibility that the story was true to ratchet up pressure on Iran and help grease the wheels for the war narrative - and the US neocon machine may well have known this to be the case all along. Coghlin and the Telegraph are the perfect vehicle for such a gambit as, in the main, those outside the UK (especially Americans) haven't cottoned on to the fact that he's an utter shill and his paper is a tabloid rag that used to be a real newspaper. If they had used, say, Bill Kristol and the Weekly Standard to float this story, few would have been fooled.
Update The Booman isn't fooled at all:
The U.K. Daily Telegraph has emerged, in the Bush years, as one of the least reliable papers in the Western world. They routinely publish unsourced or poorly sourced rumors or even rank propaganda. Today, they seem to be breaking some kind of big story, but it is much more likely that this is more of a psychological campaign that is aimed at the Iranian leadership.Well, not since 2002, but over the last year or so I've been posting about more than a few.
Saturday, February 24, 2007
Posted by Cernig at 2/24/2007 09:15:00 AM