Tuesday, February 27, 2007

The X-files: Dick Cheney

I came across this rather old article (from 2000) by Gary Sick. This was published in Iranian.com under the running title :

Republican vice-presidential nominee has opposed unilateral sanctions!

I suspect this was written to appeal to the Iranian neoconservative sympathizers! But I can't help the desire of bannering a few lines of it. I note my thoughts in []s.

In early 1990, as Secretary of Defense, Cheney signed the (classified) Defense Policy Guidance that drastically revised the Cold War scenario that envisioned a Soviet invasion of Iran, followed by an immediate clash between NATO and Warsaw Pact forces in Central Europe. Instead, the new plan scaled back the scenario to the goal of defending the oil fields of Saudi Arabia and the Arab sheikhdoms from an unspecified aggression, largely on the grounds that a US defense effort in Iran was unrealistic. [unspecified aggression? So, what does the re-defining of cold-war scenario mean? Is it implied that Cheney suggested replacing the cold-war-with-Russia "cause" with fight-over-mid-east-oil "cause"? And who directed those scenarios?]

On August 5, 1990, after the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait, it was Cheney who traveled to Saudi Arabia and secured permission for US forces to operate from Saudi territory. King Fahd reportedly demanded that if there were a fight, Saddam would "not get up again." [bloody hell! traitor!] After US assurances, Fahd accepted US forces, apparently against the advice of Crown Prince Abdullah.

In December 1990, in testimony before the Senate Armed Service Committee, Cheney argued that military action was the only sure way to force Iraq out of Kuwait. Sanctions might work, but given Saddam's total control and the fragility of the coalition, there was no certainty that they would work. [sounds familiar, AGAIN!]

When the threatened use of Iraqi non-conventional weapons against Israel was raised, Cheney suggested in a CNN interview that Israel would respond to any such attack with nuclear weapons. [Oh then we have known about Israel's nuclear arsenal for a long time!]

Also on the nuclear front, former General Colin Powell says that Cheney directed that plans be drawn up for the use of nuclear weapons in the battle to oust Iraqi troops from Kuwait. "The results unnerved me," Powell wrote in his memoir: "An American Journey." "To do serious damage to just one armored division dispersed in the desert would require a considerable number of small tactical nuclear weapons. [Dick seems to love trying his nukes out!]

In March 1991, when civil rebellions by Kurds, Shias and others were swirling in Iraq, Cheney acknowledged the uprising, but noted that Saddam had the loyalty of the "only organized military force in the country." The US, he said, would be pleased "if Iraq had a new government," but there could be worse things than Saddam's retention of power: "The breakup of Iraq would probably not be in US interests." [breaking his promis to King Fahad and keeping Saddam in power!]

When criticism of Turkish use of Western-supplied military equipment against the Kurds emerged in early 1992, Cheney reportedly argued in favor of continued arms deliveries to Turkey, in line with the official US position praising the Turks on their handling of the Kurdish conflict.

In 1996, as the CEO of Halliburton, Cheney sharply criticized American efforts to isolate Iran and other countries through unilateral economic sanctions

He repeated these views in 1997 during a Central Asian oil conference, saying that the U.S. needed to re-examine its policy of trying to force other nations to avoid all dealings with Iran. "We are pursuing a policy with respect to Iran that most of our friends in the region think doesn't make any sense...(and) it undermines our leadership in other areas." He also warned that the policy could make the newly independent countries overly reliant on Russian pipelines and subject to Russian influence. [Ah, so he wanted to get the pipeline through Iran (or Afghanistan?) while undermining Russia's influnce? So, now he thinks Russia nd Iran are too close and he has no chance but military action?]

In 1998, addressing an oil conference in Australia, Cheney said the United States should lift its threat of economic sanctions on companies attempting to do business with Iran. "I think the US made a mistake in trying to impose a secondary boycott in effect (on companies doing business with Iran) [Why am I sensing he was in dialogue with the Iranian government (Hashemi Rafsanjani?) at the time?]

In June 2000, speaking at an oil conference in Canada, Cheney called for an end to investment sanctions against Iran, saying American energy companies should be allowed to operate there along with those from the rest of the world. He said that US-Iran relations were "a tragedy'", and that it was time to put such crises as Iran's taking of US hostages behind them.

Cheney said Halliburton had some operations in Iran through foreign subsidiaries, which is all that is allowed under US law. "But we would like to do more than we're able to do in Iran at present." While US energy companies have had to sit on the sidelines, oil companies from the rest of the world that sometimes do not operate with "the same high standards" have invested in Iran's energy sector, Cheney said.

[Halliburton-Iran deals come under fire in 2004 ...]

Can't Americans impeach their criminal vice president at least?


Fleming said...

I like the way you interspersed your commentary. It's a revealing post.

As for your question about Americans impeaching Cheney, I thought that when the Democrats were elected we'd hear a lot about impeachment of Bush and the VP. Where did that go? Maybe they know they just don't have the votes.

Another question I'd like to ask about the U.S., and particularly the Democrats: Is there any possible way to actually stop Bush and Cheney from attacking Iran? I get the impression that there is not. It appears that public opinion, military opinion, and political opinion -- all against an attack on Iran -- count for nothing contrasted with the president's power simply to give orders to the military.

As I've written before, that is not the situation intended by the U.S. Constitution, in which only Congress can declare war, and Congress is "the decider", while the president merely carries out the intentions of Congress.

I ask the greatest question of our time once more: Is there ANY possible way to prevent Bush from attacking Iraq?

N. said...

I think there are many ways to prevent Bush from launching these wars. I think the push has to come from Americans, and it has to come loud and clear.
But, the problem is, (take me for example), I have a job in an institution run by Zionists, I have a mortgage, I have a family to feed, I have deadlines to meet and I live in a system that easily rejects me if I am not productive, brands me neurotic, uncool, crazy, leftist and problematic if I act "activistic". So what can I do? I wish I could protest, and I wish I could mobilize enough people around me to launch these massive protests, like the French did in may 1968, to stop the industrialists, the ones who write the checks, to pause and NOTICE me, and my voice, and my impact on the only object of desire, economy!

I don't know what to do. But I will be screaming my questions ... even if they call me a lunatic leftist ...

Loopy said...

wow...where do you dig up stuff like this..it's great. i think i'll link to it.
however, i'm glad you brought up the rafsanjani connection. Because its' something that most of those who are not familiar with iranian politics have no idea about. Tehre's a reason this guy sticks around year after year. However i do wonder also about ahmadinejad and his election.
this guy came up out of nowhere. mayor of tehran for two years and boom, he's president. And at a critical time like this as well? during the iraq invasion? during the nuclera crisis?
I dont know whether the idea of mahmoud jan getting into power gives me hope by thinking he was put into place to create this 'crisis' or it gives me fear, that he was put there to give an excuse for somethin far worse...
and the worst part is the waiting to see...
thanks for the article.

N. said...

Hi Loopy, thanks for your interest.
Yes the election of Ahmadi Nejad remains one of those wonderous matters. I think Ahmadinejad and Bush share common point in the way they were elected as well.

But I blame the election of Ahmadinejad on the Iranian intellectuals, who boycotted the election at the WORST possible time. All the leaders of democracy opted for sulking! They decided to not choose between the bad and the worse and to express their desire for the "good".

My assessment is, that within Iranian politics, there is certain rivalary between the conservatives and the reformists to be the "one" who will break the ice with the US. That again speaks to the reality of the government's acknowledgement of the general sympathies of Iranians to resume relationships with the US. Recently, that the rightist have been thawing a bit and promoting the halting of nuclear program, certain leftists have been provoking them not to.

This is a time for acute attention and for total selflessness.

Iranians CANNOT afford but to speak UNITEDLY.

I will have a faith in this world if the people of Iran and the people of the US demand of their leaders will create the right action. But I fear the ones who are putting wood in this fire are the Saudis and the Israelis. Iran's alliance with the US takes away their bargaining power! I am afraid of what they have at work. But Iranians have been clever in avoiding errors. Nothing was more provokative that the shooting down of the Iranisn passenger Airbus plane during the first Iraq war. Iranians resisted the temptation of retaliation then; I wish they will show similar restraints now.

The plan is to engage Iran in war. But the "real" ruling elite in Iran (not Ahmadinejad) has too much at stake to act reactionary! If an accidental war begins, I will point the finger to Israelis and neoconservatives.

Anna said...

"I will point the finger to Israelis and neoconservatives".
You are far from being alone with this, Naj!
But as long as our "fate-shaping", hypocritical and notoriously lying rulers inthe US as well as in EU keep on prentending and calling Israels permanently committed crimes against humanity and Geneva conventions "selfdefence" while others reaction is just called terrorism, nothing will change!. Saying and sadly recognizing this without any anti-semitic feelings, nor denying the Holocaust, but being myself (somebody with jewish roots by my grandfather) just fed up of the instrumentalizing this human tragedy by turning it into an instrument of blackmailing, functionning on and on! It makes me feel just sick to see and realize what all these Netanyahus, Olmerts, Liebermanns and the whole gang of criminal liars are telling and "recommending" "the rest" of the world.
It's not only disgusting, but most of all very dangerous.
Will there ever be a way to stop these reckless morons?

Brother Tim said...

The only chance for any sustained peace in the region is if Iran is nuclear armed. The Neo-cons and their ME franchise, the Israeli Zionists, will not mess with a nuclear power. (See N Korea, China, Russia, Pakistan) Rather than suspend uranium enrichment, they should accelerate it. I believe Russia, China, and N Korea may be helping them. If so, that is a good thing. Just as in the Cold War, mutual annihilation is the only detriment.

N. said...

Brother tim, sadly, I have to agree.
But I am sure the real issue is not about Iran having or not having nuclear weapons. It's about creating instability. see my brant new post!