Iran Should Go Its Own Way

by Serban V.C. Enache

This is a brief case of why I think Iran should leave the JCPOA, in spite of all the bad press it’s going to get on the international stage. The seizure of the Iranian oil tanker bound for Syria should be the last straw. It was nothing short of piracy, completely illegal under international law. Teheran’s strategy of patience vis-a-vis the Western powers was tried and it failed; that’s clear as daylight and any more pussyfooting around will scarcely delay the inevitable [i.e. a permanent cold war situation]. The UN and other international organizations, like the IAEA, simply don’t matter if the Hegemon has set its mind, facts and honor be damned.

The biggest pushers for an Iran-US conflict are the neoconservatives, and sadly, that course of action has support at grassroots level among the Christian Zionists – we’re talking here about the Right, not the Far Right [KKKers and Neonazis]. Despite all efforts made by the likes of Tucker Carlson to educate the Conservative American public about the real situation in the Middle East, many of them remain brainwashed by mainstream propaganda – as is evident in this particular comment section of Newsmax. Here’s a taste of it: ‘If Iran gets a nuke, it will surely use it on Israel’ – ‘Muslims will lie to everyone to get their way’ – ‘They should do what Trump tells them, or have their oil taken as war spoils’ – ‘What have the Iranians done with the billions we gave them?’

That last comment is the type of inquisitive thinking that can’t be raised to Saudi Arabia and Israel – both sponsors of regional instability, terrorist tactics, and terrorist organizations – and the latter [Israel], a big customer of US “aid”. As for the claim that the ‘crazy Iranian jihadists’ will nuke Israel if they get the A-bomb, that’s one of the more easier things to debunk. In over two hundred years, Iran has attacked, get this, ZERO countries. The same can’t be said of the USA or Israel. There is no precedent in history in which a country possessing nukes dropped nukes on another nuclear power. There is no precedent in history in which a country possessing nukes was invaded by a power that had or hadn’t nukes. There’s no better guarantee that you won’t get invaded. Can the West, or better yet, the world as a whole, deliver guarantees that a country won’t be invaded if it disposes of its nukes and nuke-manufacturing facilities? In a rational and just world, yes – such guarantees would exist de jure and de facto. But we’re not living in such a world!

The Right in the US is hungriest to do Israel’s bidding in the Middle East, geopolitical ventures popularized and waged at the expense of US capital and US soldiers’ lives. Bill Maher, years ago asked Netanyahu what’s Israel’s secret for waging speedy wars. Netanyahu answered quickly and truthfully “Our secret is the US.” And no, I haven’t forgotten about the fake doves among the Democrats. Here’s Jimmy Dore utterly destroying Kamala Harris’ hypocritical, hawkish rhetoric.

What trust can the Iranians put in the European powers, let alone in Washington, who betrayed the deal first? The Europeans announce Instex, a system which was developed at a crawl, and one that won’t work if it doesn’t extend to oil sales [which it doesn’t in lack of an accord between Washington and its European allies], and immediately after that, an Iranian oil tanker is seized in international waters. The European signatories of the JCPOE, the actors who allegedly desire a peaceful and diplomatic solution to the situation, haven’t condemned that blatant act of piracy. Worse still, Iran is the target of false flag operations, designed to make it appear as a rogue state that’s asking for “it” [to be bombed and or invaded]. Iran should swiftly pull out of the nuclear agreement, stating objective reasons for the move and just wish everybody a pleasant day.

The West’s double-standards and warmongering are painfully obvious, or they should be to anyone possessing a fraction of a neuron inside their heads. Countries like Pakistan, India, and Israel are not signatories of the non-proliferation treaty, and you don’t see anyone in the Western or Eastern press calling for sanctions against these countries, based on the fact they have nukes and the capability to produce more.

But won’t the Iranian economy suffer if the country pulls out? It is suffering already, and the more it tries to be patient and negotiate with parties only concerned with their own image on the international stage, who aren’t in truth interested in establishing a functional deal, Teheran’s policy will remain unsuccessful.

Iranian imports from and exports to the West aren’t insurmountable market losses. Teheran should pursue closer cooperation with the few strategic partner states it has and should dramatically expand import substitution programs. Consumers are going to pay higher bills, yes, but in the medium term the situation will stabilize, and long term Iran will benefit from fully matured industries in terms of labor skills, output capacity, and know-how [technology level]. As I wrote in a past article, The Sovereign Nation State, in reference to the wisdom of Friedrich List on historical economics, a nation’s true wealth is the full and multifaceted development of its productive powers, not its current exchange values. For example, the nation’s economic education is more important than immediate production of value, and it might be right for one generation to sacrifice its gain and enjoyment to secure strength and skill for future generations. All measure of achievement is attained through sacrifice. The art of statecraft is knowing which sacrifices to make…

Yet the threat of military confrontation remains either way. Eternal vigilance seems a cliche, but I can’t come up with anything better. Iran, through all channels, private and state-run media, especially alt-media channels, needs to debunk all the false flag operations, it needs to shed an inquisitive light on the past deeds and motivations of its would-be attackers today, the past crimes of US administrations, all the hypocrisy, all the double-dealing, all the mythology surrounding the War on Terror, everything. So long as a majority in the Western audience remains wise against the war propaganda, Western governments will have a tougher time selling their hawkish plans, a tougher time engaging in bombing campaigns and invasion. Sanctions will remain, to be sure, they’ll even get harsher – but no enemy can rob you of your will and spirit.

Interview with Iran’s Ambassador to the UK

Iran’s Ambassador to the UK Hamid Baeidinejad answers questions: the recent escalation of tensions between the US and Iran, the Gulf of Oman tanker accident, Western accusations, Iran’s ability to defend itself against the US and other Western powers, including Israel, the status of the Nuclear Deal as the Government increases uranium enrichment in response to the West’s treaty violations, and tensions with Saudi Arabia across the region.

Trump thinks we’re all Fools

by Serban V.C. Enache

On the third day of his visit to Japan, Trump publicly insulted the intelligence of his global audience. He said he’s not looking to hurt Iran at all; that he wants the Iranians to say no to nuclear weapons, because the world has enough problems with nuclear weapons – and that he isn’t seeking regime change in Iran. Trump said Iran has tremendous economic potential and that he is willing to let that country achieve its potential if they come to the negotiating table. Utter hogwash!

Let’s take a brief lesson in recent history. Ahead of his term, during the election campaign, wasn’t Trump worried that the USA’s nuclear arsenal was obsolete? Wasn’t he afraid that the nukes won’t go off if the Government launched them? Didn’t he say he wants the US to have more and better nukes? Yes, he did. Did he also speak favorably of nuclear proliferation, if that happened on the USA’s terms? Yes, back during the campaign, he invoked Japan and South Korea as potential candidates; and just recently he entertained the notion of Saudi Arabia developing its own nuclear program. What did that disgusting wretch, Mike Pompeo say about the Iranian Government? Well, he said plenty of nasty things, but the word “thugs” was given particular airtime. What does Pompeo say about the Saudi Government, after Khashoggi’s barbaric assassination and after the butchery displayed by that same Government with the recent executions of dissenters, including the 16 year old boy that was crucified? What about the siege of Yemen? Crickets? Yeah, that’s what I thought too.

Now let’s talk about nuclear weapons in the Middle East. Israel is the single actor in the region which has nuclear weapons. Israel is not even a signatory of the non-proliferation treaty. Iran’s leadership repeatedly said that it doesn’t seek to develop atomic weapons and that it desires the Middle East to be a region free of such weapons. The regime in Teheran has been following the agreement struck with the Obama administration in 2015. The International Atomic Energy Agency [the IAEA] has repeatedly confirmed that Iran is compliant with the nuclear deal’s terms. But let’s say that Iran wished to follow the US in abandoning the accord. Isn’t it hypocritical for Washington to decide which countries can and can’t have nukes? Who is Trump to decide which countries are free to better themselves [economically] and which are forbidden to? From what moral law does such a view stem, because it certainly doesn’t spring from International Law, or from Natural Law [see Vattel, Grotius & others]. I suppose it springs from the [garbage] idea that the United States is god’s chosen country, while the rest of the world’s nations are composed of inferior races. I suppose that’s what many so-called Christians in the US believe; but their god sounds a lot like the barbaric and genocidal Yahweh, and not like Jesus Christ. Then again, the USA is a place full of fake Christians that – since 1776 – has been at peace for less than 20 years. The rest of the time it’s been engaged in some type of military conflict, at home and or abroad.

Trump’s claim that he isn’t looking to hurt Iran at all is absolutely ridiculous, given his Government’s belligerent statements [from press conferences to posts on social media], military operations, and financial sanctions – going so far to threaten any other country willing to do commerce with Iran with the same belligerent actions. The freezing of a country’s foreign assets and trade sanctions is war by other means and it too produces plenty of victims. Trump’s sanctions against Venezuela, initiated in August 2017, are responsible for tens of thousands of deaths in that country. The strong-arm tactic is absolutely about HURTING the other side, to squeeze concessions out of him. It has nothing to do with bargaining in good faith [positive sum outcomes for all].

I think not even Trump’s base believes him anymore when it comes to foreign interventionism. Trump has done so many 180 degree turns on this subject [and others], that one would have to be an utter fool to believe he’s adamant about anything. And that’s precisely what Trump is gambling on; the desire of the American public to remain willfully ignorant. He’s gambling on the larger hatred for the liberals and the SJWs among republicans and independents, to – in their eyes – outweigh his own broken promises and policy failures. If that happens, and it likely will, Trump and his neocons and the Deep State and all the rent-seekers and usurers and war profiteers behind them will get another term, another chance to rob and destroy nations.

Neoliberalism 4: Waiting For Thatcher

by Mike Goodman

In the beginning . . .

This installment begins with the 1947 conference and The Mont Pelerin Society’s inauguration completed (see “Neoliberalism 3” in this series), with agreement made that it be a think tank and have a duty to promote intellectual promotion of the ideas of freedom. One key point to bear in mind is that all participants were unanimously against the ideas of Keynes and against Communism, as well as any form of collective government. Continue reading “Neoliberalism 4: Waiting For Thatcher”