The US is allied with Israel against Islamist terror, says the traditional picture of international relations found in the mainstream media and taught in political science departments the world over. But recent world events have mounted a rather explicit challenge to this picture. We need a new approach to geopolitical theory. In this series, Psychological Warfare and Political Grammar, I make a case for that new geopolitical approach in hopes of benefiting the current generation of budding scholars.
In due course, I shall lay down some general principles, but to begin I need an engine starter: an issue that cries out for explanation. Say, the controversial US nuclear deal with Iran.
The Obama administration boasted of a process to nudge Iran towards responsibility and ‘normality,’ and dubbed the agreement—officially—“The Historic Deal that Will Prevent Iran from Acquiring a Nuclear Weapon.”
Critics rather saw it as “The Historic Deal that Will Allow Iran to Acquire a Nuclear Weapon.” The agreement, they charged, lacks effective mechanisms to ensure that Iran keeps to her promises; moreover, by lifting sanctions and unfreezing assets, it allows Iran to race the final lap to nuclear-weapons capability. Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu added, in a speech to the US Congress, that Israel—a presumed US ally—would be Iran’s target.
Who’s right? In a piece published March 2015, I sided with the critics. And I agreed with them that Obama may be compared to Neville Chamberlain, the British prime minister who let Hitler swallow Austria, Czechoslovakia, and Poland, assisting thereby the Nazi conquest of Europe. However, I also signaled my problems with how this comparison is usually presented. I was a bit coy then; I shall be explicit now.
We all learn to repeat it in school: Chamberlain was well-intentioned but cowardly and gullible, so he gave Hitler what he wanted hoping to appease the Nazi dictator and avoid a general war; Hitler, who always meant war, gained a better position from which to attack. This famous interpretation is now part of the ‘historical toolkit’ of educated Westerners.
Obama’s detractors have observed that he, like Chamberlain, defends his policies as a search for peace and, like Chamberlain, assists the growth of a terrorist, judeophobic, would-be genocidal power. Iran, they charge, is swallowing the Middle East and gaining a better position from which to attack the Jewish state. Conclusion: Obama—like Chamberlain—is weak. It’s dejà vu all over again: more ‘appeasement.’
What is the problem? The premise. Chamberlain did not ‘appease’ Hitler.
It was long ago shown (though standard textbooks take scant notice) that, neither naïve nor timorous, Chamberlain was in fact ideologically committed to Hitler’s success. Chamberlain’s worldview, expressed in a newspaper that he clandestinely controlled, “seems to have differed little in its ideological content,” says one historian, “from the professed prejudices and beliefs of the Nazi leaders.” This included explicit antisemitism. For example, opponents of Chamberlain’s pro-German policies were called “Jewish/Communist traitors.”
In light of these and other facts, if the Obama/Chamberlain comparison makes sense (as I believe it does), it ought to prompt the question: Does Obama—like Chamberlain—mean to assist the loudest Jew-hating power of his time? And if so, how can US policy be called pro-Israel?
The present series—Psychological Warfare and Political Grammar—will investigate these linked questions and use them as a wedge to pry open, and explain, the entire US-led geopolitical system.
As a first stab, consider some recent developments.
After signing “The Historic Deal that Will Prevent Iran from Acquiring a Nuclear Weapon,” Iran immediately tested missiles that can carry nuclear payloads (October 2015). The immediate (US-led) Western reaction? To lift international sanctions on Iran (January 2016).
Before the signature, the Obama administration had promised that “under the Iran nuclear deal,” the US and its allies retained “authority to target Iran’s development of ballistic missiles.” See for yourself (highlighted by us in yellow, below):
A little over a month ago, however, Obama made clear that the US government will do nothing to stop Iran’s development of nuclear-capable missiles.
The Obama administration had also promised that, “under the Iran deal, the US will only lift nuclear-related sanctions on Iran” (see above, highlighted in green caps by the White House). But “recent statements from Treasury Department officials” suggest that
“the administration is now set to grant Iran non-nuclear sanctions relief, including indirect access to the U.S. financial system, weeks after top Iranian officials began demanding [it].”
are charging betrayal. Rep. Mike Pompeo (R., Kan.) complained:
They’ll get some ammunition from a NYT profile of Ben Rhodes, the Obama advisor who crafted the sale of the Iran deal, creating a narrative for Americans where Obama “began seriously engaging with Iranian officials in 2013,” when (alleged) ‘moderates’ took power. This story, says the NYT, “was largely manufactured.” In fact, “Obama’s closest advisers always understood him to be eager to do a deal with Iran as far back as 2012, and even since the beginning of his presidency,” when the (alleged) Iranian ‘moderates’ were as yet nowhere in sight.
But one could argue that Obama didn’t mislead. Immediately after taking office he expressed, in a public address, that “I would like to speak clearly to Iran’s leaders... My administration is now committed to diplomacy that addresses the full range of issues before us. ...This process will not be advanced by threats.” Now that was brutally honest. For Obama, as we now see, makes no (real) threats; the ayatollahs get what they want.
Conclusion: under the US-Iran nuclear deal, Iran will indeed become a nuclear-weapons power. The critics were right.
And the other issue?
Even as Obama took a pass on Iran’s new missiles, “the commander of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards’ missile battery said the missiles tested were designed to be able to hit U.S. ally Israel.” According to media reports, the test missiles were emblazoned with the phrase “Israel must be wiped out.”
This question must be asked. If we do so carefully and rationally, then, regardless of our conclusion, the exercise will improve our understanding of modern geopolitics. But any question must be considered in context, so here is the broad setting.
Since 1979, when Ayatollah Khomeini inaugurated the Iranian Islamist regime, Iranian bosses have promised publicly to destroy the Jewish State; over the same period, US bosses have vowed publicly to protect it. As comic-book invective—‘Great Satan,’ ‘Axis of Evil’—flew to and fro between Teheran and Washington, and as reports of Iranian development of nuclear weapons flooded the news, many came to expect a US attack on Iran. After all, alleged WMDs (weapons of mass destruction) had been the stated reason to invade Iraq, and there is no question that Iran wants to go nuclear. But Iran got the friendliest treatment possible: a deal that allows it to get nuclear weapons.
The future is unknown. Many things are uncertain. But the geopolitical outcome here is clear: US policy has increased the threat to Israel. So lots of folks are now surprised and puzzled.
‘Surprise’ adaptively shocks the mind: Look, your model of the world is inadequate. Absent a quick theoretical fix, ‘puzzlement’—more languid than ‘surprise’—settles in. What now? Either you revise your model to account for past and current events, or you stay puzzled, and future events will again surprise. This can be dangerous.
We recommend, instead, a rational approach. Thus, if you believe that
A. The Iranian power elite mean to destroy Israel;
B. The US power elite mean to protect Israel; and
C. the US-Iran deal helps Iran to get nuclear weapons,
then you should rationally strive to eliminate the contradiction.
To this end, a number of moves are available. For example, you may state that:
1) The US power elite ‘goofed’: they are stupid and spineless;
This solution has obvious appeal, as beliefs A-B-C may all be retained: US bosses didn’t mean to give away the store; they are just bad negotiators. And they are too scared of Iran to enforce anything. (This is the popular ‘appeasement’ interpretation.)
On the downside, you are now stipulating that the world’s most powerful people are grossly incompetent on matters of the gravest strategic significance, and easily rattled by fifth-rate local thugs. If that seems implausible, you may claim that:
2) Barack Obama alone (or at most a tiny cabal around him) is anti-Israel.
Here, too, you retain beliefs A-B-C. But can Obama really get anything done against a broad consensus in the US power elite? If that seems implausible too, you may have to do some surgery.
You may challenge, for instance, any one belief A-B-C and keep the other two. More radically, you could challenge two and keep just one. Or even challenge all three. But good method is conservative: it makes minor changes and tweaks further only as needed.
Consider the following ways to challenge just one of your A-B-Cs:
3) within existing constraints (which must be specified), the nuclear deal is in fact the best way to forestall a nuclear Iran [not C, keep A & B,];
4) Iran does not really mean to destroy Israel (statements to the contrary are bluster) [not A, keep B & C];
5) relative to other interests, the US power elite are indifferent about Israeli security (statements to the contrary are propaganda) [not B, keep A & C];
6) the US power elite mean to harm Israel (statements to the contrary are propaganda) [not B, keep A & C].
Each of these six solutions, by removing the contradiction, yields an internally consistent model and thus a candidate hypothesis. To assess their relative merits we must test them against additional evidence. We will do that.
As we do, I will refer us repeatedly to what I call the Establishment Model of geopolitical processes, which, by infesting all mainstream media, dominates our modern Western culture. This model rests on a double claim, according to which the Western power elites,
● are basically well-intentioned, or at the very least democratically constrained; and
● they are ‘only human,’ and in fact quite prone to make mistakes.
The above double claim, so partial to the apologies that power makes about itself, forces a definite interpretation: if a policy outcome is bad for common folk, blame it on policy errors—never on a deliberate plan to favor thugs and undermine democracy. In this context, those surprised and outraged by the US-Iran nuclear deal will favor the first hypothesis above: Obama and Co. ‘goofed.’ (A quick internet search will confirm how common the accusation of stupidity and/or cowardice.)
Most will prefer this solution, because a daily rehearsal in mainstream books, articles, classrooms, and news shows attaches them emotionally to the Establishment Model. This model is central to the ‘educated person’ identity so dear to the university-trained Westerner, who learns to protect his identity—and to signal social adequacy in ‘polite company’—by pouring loud scorn on more suspicious alternative models. It’s a reflex.
Such biases are perhaps strongest among scholars of politics, political economy, and international relations, who learn in school to consider the media as sources of information (and fountains of interpretations), not so much as instruments of power. Result: scant scrutiny of media-imposed narratives. The deep consequence: we are not having a scientific debate on Western power-elite policy. And that’s a pity.
Lest I be misread, I define my ‘terms of art.’
By power elite I do not mean anything so loose and broad as ‘connected people,’ ‘the rich,’ or ‘the government’ (lots of people in these categories have better intentions than they get credit for, but are also less clued-in, and much less influential, than they themselves think). By power elite I mean the select handful whose will becomes State policy, and whose goals may be inferred from policy patterns. By Western power elites I mean those in the leading and most powerful countries in the West: United States, Britain, Germany, France, and a few other leading Western countries.
Where the Establishment Model fails, a more suspicious alternative model can, I believe, account for Western power-elite policy. The key is a proper grasp of Western power-elite ideology (easily documented), and of the supporting political role—witting or unwitting—played by much academic social science and the mass media. These supporting activities I will here reference as psychological warfare.
This is a term I apply broadly, as do others, to encompass all sorts of non-military applications. Such usage agrees with historical practice, for departments of ‘communication’ in civilian universities—the same that train media personnel—are direct outgrowths of psychological warfare programs developed by the US government for World War II (see Part 1).
Our other title concept, political grammar, refers to a set of explicit and implicit cultural rules that psychological warriors—if they are to be effective at influencing masses of people—must heed when combining claims and appeals. It is, if you wish, the cultural board on which the game of psychological warfare is played.
I will explain these concepts, and their usefulness to building a proper explanatory and predictive geopolitical model, in about 20 articles. The first ten are finished and comprise a unit. They are mutually supporting and together build an argument, so each article points to the others, with hyperlinks, as necessary.
These articles are a distillation of The Collapse of the West: The Next Holocaust and its Consequences, a much larger work that is proper for exhaustive analysis and historical documentation, not viral mass communication. Readers interested in longer treatments of all issues considered here are welcome to consult The Collapse. It is currently available only in Spanish, but a translation is being prepared.
much for the preliminaries; we are now ready to go.
Point of departure
Onward from ago sweeps the long arm of yore—come to smack us (to catch us unawares, aye, though Santayana did warn us).
The key question: are US bosses geopolitically competent?
A joint consideration of policies toward Iran and Israel—key players in the same geographic and political region—offers a useful test. If these policies articulate in the service of larger strategic goals, big point for the competency hypothesis; if they are chaotic or contradictory, big point against. We shall consider the US-Iran nuclear deal, therefore, against the background of US policy in the Arab-Israeli conflict.
But our perceptions matter, and we all come to this topic with strong feelings and definite ideas. So let us begin, in the spirit of self-awareness, with a brief inquest into our relationship with the Arab-Israeli conflict. Why do we even care?
Muslim and Jewish interest is easily explained. But why do we—the Western goyim and kafirs—care? Why do overworked Catholic grunts in Mexico, say, trying their best to cope with a crime-ridden, violent country (far more violent than Israel), ponder a faraway ‘Peace Process’ and the legitimacy of a ‘Palestinian State’?
Simple answer: because the media make us care. Because they insist, every day, on the front page, that we have a stake in this circus, gluing our eyeballs to the center-ring trapeze: Israel. And we hold our breaths.
But why do they care to make us care?
Perhaps because this is our Mackinderian “geographical pivot of history.” Because the spinning top of Fate, perhaps, really does wobble its needle on this tiny property, and when it falls, the Earth, delicately poised on the inflexion between two epochs, will shake to its roots. The media bosses want to tip this top.
Well, the support we give to particular policies is in large measure mobilized by media portrayals that we find plausible. Plausibility is a function of what we remember. And who shapes our memories? The media. So yes, they can.
I will illustrate. Consider two dramatic facts.
● The Middle East ‘Peace Process’ means to give PLO/Fatah (or the ‘Palestinian Authority’) its own State in the militarily strategic territories of Judea and Samaria (‘West Bank’).
● Iranian bosses have openly (and repeatedly) promised to exterminate the Israeli Jews.
Can you connect them? Probably not. Not unless you can remember back to 1979.
In 1979, when the Iranian Revolution came to power, Khomeini invited two beloved comrades—before any others—to celebrate with him in Teheran. Who? PLO/Fatah bosses Yasser Arafat and Mahmoud Abbas.
Why? Because Khomeini was grateful.
As the New York Times explained on the front page, once in Teheran:
“...Bantering and grinning, [Arafat] declined to furnish details about support the PLO had given to various Iranian guerrilla organizations...”
But other members of PLO/Fatah were more forthcoming:
“Palestinian sources said that Mr. Arafat’s group had sent arms to the revolutionary forces in the last four months and had trained Iranian guerillas since the early 1970s.”
PLO/Fatah’s openly Islamist goal, wrote the Times, was to export the Iranian Revolution everywhere. To this end, PLO/Fatah secured Khomeini’s projection of power at home and abroad by helping set up two major institutions: 1) the deadly SAVAMA, the secret police, and 2) Hezbollah’s parent: the all-important Revolutionary Guard.
The Iranian Revolution was PLO/Fatah’s baby.
And the ultimate goal?
“Mr. Arafat received a pledge from Ayatollah Khomeini that the Iranians would ‘turn to the issue of victory over Israel’ after Iran had consolidated its strength...”
Now, “victory over Israel,” as Khomeini and his followers have always explained, means the genocidal destruction of the Jewish State: the extermination of the Israeli Jews. So it matters that
“Mr. Arafat, the first prominent visitor to Iran since the revolution, said the Palestinian and Iranian aims were identical.”
But how to destroy Israel? As everybody was keenly aware—not least the Arab reporters in Teheran—Israel had defeated several combined attacks by its Arab Muslim neighbors. So, they asked, what’s the plan? It’s the ‘Plan of Phases,’ replied mastermind Mahmoud Abbas. In a word, hypocrisy. PLO/Fatah would falsely promise to abandon judeophobic terrorism in exchange for a piece of territory, then use that territory as a platform to annihilate Israel. With Orwellian aplomb, the New York Times would soon call this strategy the ‘peace process.’
And yet, these days, almost all who express interest in the Arab-Israeli conflict—including Israeli patriots who daily warn about the Two-State ‘Solution’—know nothing of PLO/Fatah’s role in creating the Iranian Islamist regime. It is not part of our memory.
Because, like Leonard Shelby in Chris Nolan’s Memento, we experience a memory wipe at the end of each continuously lucid segment, and thus begin the next one, discontinuously, with a clean slate. The media perform this wipe. And it’s easy. Since we implicitly assume that the media give us relevant context, the minute they stop saying something it becomes irrelevant. And soon—poof!—it’s gone. We can’t remember it. By the mid-1980s, right before the really serious ‘Peace Process’ lobbying began, all mention of the intimate PLO/Fatah-Iran relationship had ceased. It was thus erased from our memory.
This erasure appears to be carefully husbanded. Thus, in August 2015, as the US and Iran were concluding their nuclear negotiations, Iran’s official news agency, IRNA, announced that PLO/Fatah had signed an “all out cooperation agreement” with Iran, but almost nobody (in the West) found out, because the New York Times (as far as I can tell) didn’t mention it.
But you know this, so you can hardly miss it: if the ‘Peace Process’ is concluded, Israel will cede a militarily strategic territory to a proxy of Iran, the nuclear bomb-seeking state that openly promises to exterminate the Israelis.
The Two State Solution is a Final Solution.
Let us now evaluate competence. It was Bush Sr., in the late 1980s, who feverishly pushed and threatened in order to force the ‘Peace Process’ on Israel. So was Bush perhaps fooled by PLO/Fatah’s alleged ‘peace epiphany’? That’s almost impossible to believe.
US bosses had asked PLO/Fatah to mediate the famous Iran hostage crisis. Why? Because they understood perfectly the relationship. Especially Bush Sr. who, right before this, had been CIA director. And Abbas had explained in public (to Arab reporters in Teheran) that his ‘peace’ overtures to Israel would be entirely phony.
There is nothing here to confuse Bush, unless he is pathologically incompetent. If the Establishment Model demands that, perhaps it should be reevaluated.
In favor of my favorite alternative hypothesis, we can say that Bush’s passion for a PLO/Fatah State is consistent with ‘intent to harm Israel.’ The same, I would argue, goes for Obama’s nuclear deal with Iran. Moreover, given the relationship between PLO/Fatah and Iran, the two policies appear—under this hypothesis—rather well articulated.
That suggests competence.
And something else: it does not appear to be Obama idiosyncrasy, or a Democratic Party peculiarity, but a bipartisan policy going back (at least...) to the Bush Sr. administration.
Of course, a successful model must explain the world generally, not just a couple of dramatic facts, however mutually relevant. And, to be acceptably plausible, the model must answer the question: Why would the US power elite wish to harm Israel? Much remains to be done, therefore, before the ‘intent to harm Israel’ hypothesis can be accepted as a key building block of a better geopolitical model. We cannot cover everything, however, so we will concentrate in the coming sections on the most diagnostic issues.
One key line of inquiry concerns the media. Are they free? Or might they be, perhaps, psychological warfare tools in the hands of the power-elite? To answer we must investigate the media’s historical construction and their relationship to power. This means work. But the potential payoff is large: a chance at intellectual independence, and a thorough-going geopolitical education about our present moment.
Let’s start with this question: Why hasn’t the New York Times mentioned the PLO/Fatah-Iran connection in recent memory?
We turn to this next.
 To see how the White House officially
sold the Iran nuclear deal as “The Historic Deal that Will Prevent Iran to Acquire a Nuclear
 For a thorough analysis of the deficiencies of the Iran nuclear deal, which links to the text of the agreement itself, see:
“A Bad Deal”; Times of Israel; August 2, 2015; by Nevet Basker.
 The myth of a well-meaning, peace-loving, but naïve and timorous prime minister is, to this day, the portrait of Chamberlain found in almost every standard historical work, drilled into students as part of their basic education. The public remains largely unaware, but this portrait was long ago refuted by mainstream historians in mainstream scholarly journals.
Historian Anthony Adamthwaite documented in detail that Chamberlain’s Conservative Party had extensive and tight control over the British media, which relied on friendly relations with like-minded publishers and editors, and a great deal of behind-the-scenes financing, blackmailing, cajoling, and pressuring with the more independent types. (a) By means of this control, Chamberlain 1) minimized criticism of the Third Reich, and 2) made the notion of war against Germany seem futile. For Chamberlain to exert himself in this manner was entirely consistent with the well-documented pro-Hitler orientation current among many in the British upper classes of the time, the same British upper classes that dominated Chamberlain’s Conservative Party.
One could, I will allow, stretch the ‘appeasement’ interpretation to account for the above manipulations. So one hopes for a smoking gun to settle the matter. Historian R.B. Cockett has found it.
Cockett has documented that Chamberlain had utter, complete editorial control—through his best friend Joseph Ball—over one particular newspaper that Ball had clandestinely bought outright: Truth. “[The] expression of the views of Ball and Chamberlain,” in this newspaper, “seems to have differed little in its ideological content from the professed prejudices and beliefs of the Nazi leaders,” writes Cockett. Indeed, “Truth adopted an overtly antisemitic and racialist tone…, [and] any opponent of appeasement came to be branded as a Jewish/Communist traitor to the true English cause.” Naturally, “Truth also became overtly pro-German and pro-Italian as Chamberlain proceeded in his search for a diplomatic settlement with Hitler and Mussolini.” (b)
To those who know the history of eugenics—the Anglo-American ideology that in fact spawned German Nazism—this comes as no surprise. For Neville Chamberlain, as Minister of Health, had involved himself with a high-profile effort to legalize eugenics in Great Britain. (c)
SOURCES IN THIS FOOTNOTE:
(a) Adamthwaite A. 1983. The British Government and the Media, 1937-1938. Journal of Contemporary History 18: 281-97
(b) Cockett RB. 1990. Ball, Chamberlain and Truth. The Historical Journal 33: 131-42 (pp.135-36, 139-140)
Black, E. (2003). War against the weak:
Eugenics and America's campaign to create a master race. New York: Four
Walls Eight Windows. (pp.227-234)
To learn more about eugenics, read Part 5 of this series.
 Immediately after Iran’s first missile test, Josh Earnest, White House press secretary, admitted that “we’ve got strong indications that those missile tests did violate a U.N. Security Council resolutions [sic] that pertain to Iran’s ballistic missile activities... But,” he added, stepping gingerly now onto the thinnest of lines, “this is altogether separate from the nuclear agreement.”
In other words, nuclear-capable missiles are entirely unrelated to Obama’s “Historic Deal that Will Prevent Iran from Acquiring a Nuclear Weapon.” The reasoning here seems to be that the Historic Deal is not about missiles, per se, but about preventing Iran from getting nukes, and Iran, on that score, has been a good boy scout: “Iran over the last couple of years has demonstrated a track record of abiding by the commitments that they’ve made in the context of the nuclear talks.” So not to worry: if Iran doesn’t have nukes, it cannot put them on a nuclear-capable missile.
If we, in an act of sublime charity, were to grant all of Mr. Earnest’s premises, then his logic would be unimpeachable. But his argument would still beg the question: If Iran is committed to not building nukes, then why is it developing nuclear-capable missiles?
In any case, Mr. Earnest assured everybody that the “international community” was going to do something, anyway, about those missiles, because
“the U.N. Security Council resolution actually gives the international community some tools to interdict some equipment and material that could be used to advance [Iran’s] ballistic missile program.” (a)
But the White House press secretary, as befits his appropriately Orwellian family name, was being less than earnest. In fact, everything he said was false.
First, Iran’s missile tests are not “altogether separate” from the Iran nuclear deal, otherwise known as UN Security Council Resolution 2231, because UNSCR 2231 includes the following sentence:
“Iran is called upon not to undertake any activity related to ballistic missiles designed to be capable of delivering nuclear weapons, including launches using such ballistic missile technology.” (b)
That might seem like a good thing, but Alas...! It is apparently false that UNSCR 2231 “gives the international community some tools” to deal with nuclear-capable missiles. Why? Because Iran is “called upon” (see above) and this is not the same thing as required. Iran may disappoint a “call” without violating UNSCR 2231.
Or at least that is one interpretation of UNSCR 2231. And guess who favors this interpretation? The Obama administration.
When US presidents wish to act, they produce the necessary legal interpretations, and seek support from their allies; when they wish not to act, they do the same. Here is what the heads of state of the U.S., Britain, France, and Germany said:
“The four powers’ carefully worded letter [to the UN] stopped short of calling the Iranian launches a ‘violation’ of the resolution, which ‘calls upon’ Iran to refrain for up to eight years from activity, including launches, related to ballistic missiles designed with the capability of delivering nuclear weapons.” (c)
By not calling it a ‘violation,’ the “four powers” have given Russia cover to veto any action against Iran in the UN Security Council. As you might expect, long before that letter was sent to the UN, Russia had already made perfectly clear that it would veto.
Obama tied his own hands.
SOURCES IN THIS FOOTNOTE:
(a) “Washington: Press Briefing by Press Secretary Josh Earnest, 10/13/2015”; US Official News; Plus Media Solutions; published 15 October 2015.
“Exclusive: Iran missile tests were ‘in
defiance of’ U.N. resolution - U.S., allies”; Reuters; 30 March 2016; by Louis Charbonneau
 “Congress Investigating Obama Admin
Deception on Iran Nuke Deal”; The
Washington Free Beacon; 4 April 2016
 “The Aspiring Novelist Who Became
Obama’s Foreign-Policy Guru: How Ben Rhodes rewrote the rules of diplomacy
for the digital age”; The New York
Times; 5 May 2016; by David Samuels
Iran missile tests were ‘in defiance of’ U.N. resolution - U.S., allies”; Reuters; 30 March 2016; by Louis
 “Iran tests missiles emblazoned with threat to Israel”; CBS News; 9 March 2016;
 Iranian leaders, with great consistency, have been calling for Israel’s destruction over the years, ever since Ayatollah Khomeini insisted that “[Israel] should vanish from the page of time.” Their intent is clearly genocidal. Here follow three more recent examples, and then a link to a source that lists many more incitements by Iranian leaders.
“the Iranian President [called] for Israel to be ‘wiped off the map’...”
This is a reference to a statement made by Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, at the time President of Iran.
BLAIR CONSIDERS UN SANCTIONS AS HE SPEAKS OF 'REVULSION' AT IRANIAN
PRESIDENT'S SPEECH, The Independent (London), October 28, 2005, Friday, Final
Edition; NEWS; Pg. 5, 745 words, BY ANNE PENKETH AND COLIN BROWN
“One of Iran’s most influential ruling cleric [sic] called Friday on the Muslim states to use nuclear weapon against Israel, assuring them that while such an attack would annihilate Israel, it would cost them ‘damages only’.
‘If a day comes when the world of Islam is duly equipped with the arms Israel has in possession, the strategy of colonialism would face a stalemate because application of an atomic bomb would not leave any thing in Israel but the same thing would just produce damages in the Muslim world,’ Ayatollah Ali Akbar Hashemi-Rafsanjani told the crowd at the traditional Friday prayers in Tehran.
Analysts said not only Mr. Hashemi-Rafsanjani’s speech was the strongest against Israel, but also this is the first time that a prominent leader of the Islamic Republic openly suggests the use of nuclear weapon against the Jewish State.”
We point out that Hashemi Rafsanjani is not merely “one of Iran’s most influential ruling cleric[s],” but the very father of the Iranian nuclear program.
“RAFSANJANI SAYS MUSLIMS SHOULD USE NUCLEAR WEAPON AGAINST ISRAEL”; Iran
Press Service; 14 December 2001
“Israel… has no cure but to be annihilated.”
This is a message that Iranian ‘supreme leader’ (it’s an official title) Ayatollah Ali Khamenei sent on his Twitter account in November 2014.
“IRAN’S KHAMENEI: NO CURE FOR BARBARIC ISRAEL BUT ANNIHILATION; Slate; 9 November 2014; by Daniel
THE LONG LIST
If you have the stomach for it, and would like to consult a longer list of documented incitements to genocide against the Israeli Jews, you may do so in the following sources:
 Arafat, in Iran, Reports Khomeini Pledges Aid for Victory Over Israel; Visit a Sign of Iran's Sharp Turn; ARAFAT, IN TEHERAN, PRAISES THE VICTORS; By JAMES M. MARKHAM Special to The New York Times. New York Times (1857-Current file). New York, N.Y.: Feb 19, 1979. p. A1 (2 pages)
 P.L.O. Is Cool to Dayan Remarks; Statements Given Prominence; By MARVINE HOWE Special to The New York Times. New York Times (1857-Current file). New York, N.Y.: Feb 15, 1979. p. A12 (1 page)
 The New York Times wrote:
“The P.L.O. currently enjoys close ties with some of the Iranian revolutionary leaders who rose to power with the Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini. One of the most intriguing delegates at the Fatah conference in Damascus at the end of May, for example, was Arbas-Agha Zahani whose nom de guerre is Abu Sharif. He was then the head of the Ayatollah's Revolutionary Guards, or Pasdaran Enghelab... Abu Sharif rose to a position of influence thanks to the patronage of the present Iranian Defense Minister, Mustafa Chamran. Like Yasir Arafat, both Abu Sharif and Mustafa Chamran are fervent advocates of exporting Iran’s Islamic revolution to the rest of the Middle East - in particular, to the conservative states of the Arab Gulf.”
Notice: “like Yasir Arafat.” He—Arafat—was the Islamist standard!
“Abu Sharif's links with Arafat, Abu Jihad and other key figures in the P.L.O. leadership date back to the early 1970’s, when he attended a guerrilla training course at a Fatah camp in Lebanon. After the downfall of the Shah, Abu Sharif and Mustafa Chamran relied heavily on their P.L.O. contacts for help in setting up a new secret police to replace the Sha's notoriouus Savak. A special P.L.O. unit, whose members had received intelligence training in the Soviet Union, was dispatched to Teheran to assist in rooting out ‘counterrevolutionaries.’ Abu Sharif repaid his personal debt to the P.L.O. by successfully lobbying -- with the backing of, among others, one of the Ayatollah's grandsons -- for a big Iranian contribution to the Palestinian war chest and for the dispatch of more than 200 Iranian ‘volunteers’ to fight with the P.L.O. in southern Lebanon
The current head of the P.L.O. network in Iran is Hani al-Hassan, alias Abu Hassan, a Jordanian citizen who belongs to Arafat's inner circle of advisers. Before he was sent to Teheran, Abu Hassan served as deputy chief of Fatah’s security department. He enjoys a remarkable entree to Khomeini and other key members of the Iranian regime -- so much so that one Western diplomat suggests that the P.L.O. envoy should be counted as one of the most influential men in Teheran.” [emphasis added]
SOURCE: “TERROR: A SOVIET EXPORT”; New York Times. (Late Edition (East Coast)). New York, N.Y.: Nov 2, 1980. pg. A.42; by Robert Moss
 “Four more generals executed; PLO, Iran will fight Israel, Arafat says”; The Globe and Mail. Toronto, Ont.: Feb 20, 1979. p. P.10
 Historian Kenneth Levin explains that
“according to [the ‘Plan of Phases’] the Palestine Liberation Organization [PLO/Fatah] would acquire whatever territory it could by negotiations, then use that land as a base for pursuing its ultimate goal of Israel’s annihilation.”(a)
This interpretation is correct. Article 15 of the 1968 PLO Charter says that the PLO means to “liquidate the Zionist…presence” (“liquidate” is the kind of language that the German Nazis used), and article 9 explains that “armed struggle is the only way to liberate Palestine” (my emphasis).(b)
The 1974 Plan of Phases allowed, however, that although “armed struggle” was still “first and foremost” among the methods, other methods could now be used as well. To what end? Any territory “liberated” by whatever means, explains the Plan of Phases, will be governed by a “Palestinian national authority,” and “the Palestinian national authority will strive to achieve... the aim of completing the liberation of all Palestinian territory.” Given the definition of ‘Palestine’ employed in the PLO’s 1968 Charter, the words “all Palestinian territory” are synonymous with all of Israel. But, naturally, Israelis would not simply give up their entire Jewish State in a negotiation. The implication is therefore obvious: once a strategic position is obtained through negotiation, the “Palestinian national authority”—the name PLO/Fatah now goes by in Judea and Samaria—will use it as a platform and will deploy “armed struggle” to destroy Israel.
In July 1999, MEMRI (Middle East Media Research Institute), which provides the invaluable service of translating into English much of what is published in the Arab press, translated an interesting article published in the same month in the Arab press:
“In an article in the London-based Arabic daily Al-Sharq Al-Awsat, reprinted in the Palestinian daily Al-Quds on July 4, 1999, the journalist Saleh Qallab discusses the importance of the polarization of Israeli society—which was evident in the last general elections. The author’s analysis focuses on the political thought of PLO Executive Committee Secretary General, Mahmoud Abbas, aka ‘Abu Mazen,’ who was the first to claim that the fragmentation of Israeli society is relevant to the Arab strategy in the peace process.
...Qallab recalls that Abu Mazen was the first to attribute importance to the fragmentation of Israeli society—20 years ago:
‘Abu Mazen lectured at length on this issue in Tehran to a group of Palestinian and Arab journalists, accompanying Palestinian President Arafat, when he went to congratulate Khomeini for the triumph of the Iranian revolution. It was in February 1979, a week after Khomeini's return from exile in France.’ ”
In fact Khomeini, whom Abbas had installed in power, was committed to the violent destruction of Israel, and committed to doing this with PLO/Fatah. So Abbas’s ‘peace’ strategy was a ruse to gain a strategic advantage in the final, necessarily violent conflict.
“Qallab states that Abu Mazen is a pioneer of the realistic school, which, in his opinion, included former Egyptian President Anwar Sadat,
‘who claimed that the conflict with Israel by old methods and means is futile, and therefore, new approaches must be tried. Before signing the Camp David Accord and after as well, Sadat repeated this view via Dr. Usama Al-Baz, who told some PLO leaders, including Yasser Arafat, Abu Iyad, and Khaled Al-Hassan, that it was necessary to bring the Israelis down from their tanks to the ground and cause them a sense of security and peace, to allow their social maladies to appear and to prevent their unification in the face of an [external] danger.
…All the conflicts within Israeli society were so [sharply] exposed only after the beginning of the peace process... There is no doubt that the war [with Israel] was essential and that it might be essential [again] in the future. However, since the current stage is the stage of peace, this process must be exhausted...
...All that is required from us is to bring the Israelis to the absolute conviction that we Arabs really want peace, because such conviction will deepen the dispute in Israeli society and bring the Israelis down from their tanks and out of their fortresses.
...This mission is not easy, because the Israeli right knows the truth...’ ” (c)
SOURCES IN THIS FOOTNOTE:
(a) Levin, K. 2005. The Oslo syndrome: Delusions of a people under siege. Hanover, NH: Smith and Kraus. (p.ix)
(b) Translation: The Associated Press, December 15, 1998, Tuesday, AM cycle, International News, 1070 words, Clinton meets with Netanyahu, Arafat, appeals for progress, By TERENCE HUNT, AP White House Correspondent, EREZ CROSSING, Gaza Strip. [Emphasis added]
Article 9…says that “armed struggle is the only way to liberate Palestine.”
Article 15 says it is “a national duty to repulse the Zionist imperialist invasion from the great Arab homeland and to purge the Zionist presence from Palestine.”
Article 22 declares that “the liberation of Palestine will liquidate the Zionist and imperialist presence and bring about the stabilization of peace in the Middle East.”
(c) “Arab Peace Strategy and the Fragmentation of Israeli
Society”; MEMRI; July 21, 1999; No.40.
 Read here about the entire history of the PLO/Fatah-Iran relationship:
“PLO/Fatah and Iran: The Special
Relationship”; Historical and
Investigative Research; 8 September 2010; by Francisco Gil-White
 Christopher Nolan’s movie Memento provides a wonderful metaphor for our how our historical consciousness works.
The film is structured around a handicap: Leonard Shelby, Memento’s main character, cannot form new memories.
Shelby suffered trauma to the head while battling the man who raped and killed his wife. He can remember everything up to that moment, but since then his life is a series of disconnected segments. Within each segment, lasting a few hours, he remembers the stream of events—until he doesn’t. And then he starts again with a clean slate. Anterograde amnesia.
Amazingly, Shelby has a purpose: to find the criminal and kill him. Beyond amazing: he keeps to it.
At the beginning of each continuously lucid segment, we see Shelby discovering the clues he left to himself in prior segments: tattoos on his body, notes, photographs, recorded speech, etc. These explain his purpose, identify relevant persons, affirm known facts, warn about dangers, and chart future research. Historian and archaeologist of the self, Shelby pieces the clues in order to reconstruct, each time, what he’s been about, and to decide how to inch along on his vengeful quest.
Despite such heroics Shelby fails. He is missing too much information. Overly reliant on others, he is too easily conned: some of his clues are lies. He cannot reconstruct the essential interpretative backbone.
Though Shelby’s worldview is fatally flawed, he doesn’t know it. The world he sees is a fictional, parallel universe—but he is quite satisfied. Sooner or later, though, he is bound to do something terrible, perhaps even to himself.
Everyday consumers of news experience political history the way Shelby experiences life.
Events in media space simply drop from the teasers onto center stage, are given (at best) a month’s worth of contextual depth, and are not rehearsed for us in the next—disconnected—scene. It all fades quickly into shadows, in the wings. This makes it impossible for us to build a minimally adequate repository. Bobbing thus to and fro like a hapless cork on the flow of History, we perceive not the river that brung us but only this eddy, this bend, this minute—too rushed to hold our impressions long.
We cannot form new memories.
A few make heroic efforts to reconstruct the past: they read history books. They learn plenty of facts but fail to construct a causally sensible interpretive backbone, because the main texts consistently omit key context (see Part 5, Part 6).
Our worldview, like Shelby’s, is fatally flawed—and, like him, we don’t know it. Reliant on the media, we are easily conned into a fictional, parallel universe. It may be satisfying. But sooner or later we are bound to do something terrible, perhaps even to ourselves.
 References to the deep bond between PLO/Fatah and Iran, a bond that had made possible the Iranian revolution, soon became hard to find. In fact, any references to a relationship of any kind between PLO/Fatah and Iran became scarce. When they did appear, they were mostly passing references buried in the middle of occasional articles, such as this one, in late May, 1984, and they alleged a growing enmity between PLO/Fatah and Iran.
“Relations between the P.L.O. and Iran, initially warm after the Iranian revolution, cooled considerably last year when Iran failed to protest Syria’s support of rebel factions within the P.L.O. that encircled Mr. Arafat's forces in Tripoli, Lebanon.” (a)
The Iran-Syria axis, said this emerging narrative, was backing rebels within PLO/Fatah who challenged Yasser Arafat’s and Mahmoud Abbas’s authority.
But why? According to the narrative, because Arafat and Abbas could not give their unequivocal support to Iran in the Iran-Iraq War, given that PLO/Fatah’s Arab allies were supporting Iraq. (b)
Which elements of this narrative are true? Hard to know for sure. But details to contradict it can easily be found. Some of these emerged right as the narrative was being put forward.
For example, when terrorists killed 12 people in the Rome Airport in December 1985, Italian intelligence reported that they “had been trained in Iran, and entered Italy by way of Syria.” NATO intelligence appeared to concur. Moreover, “A note found on the sole survivor among the four terrorists in Rome indicated the attacks were in retaliation for the bombing of the headquarters of the Palestine Liberation Organization in Tunis on Oct. 1. .” (c)
So Iran was launching an attack to protest a bombing against the headquarters of ‘standard’ PLO/Fatah, run by Arafat and Abbas, with whom Iran was supposedly estranged?
Even more puzzling—in light of the official narrative—was this: Ahmed Jebril (or Jabril), leader of the supposedly anti-Arafat PLO/Fatah ‘rebels’ backed by the Iran-Syria axis, later confirmed that the Rome attack had been masterminded by Abu Nidal, indeed with backing from the Iran-Syria Axis. Nidal’s group was friendly with Jebril’s own. (d)
Why was everybody supposedly opposed to Arafat and Abbas involved in an attack on their behalf? Can this make sense?
There is one way to make sense of it. As Caroline Glick explains, Arafat and Abbas were careful to create ‘splinter’ organizations that they supposedly did not control in order to avoid responsibility for their terrorist attacks:
“To cultivate the myth of his innocence Arafat ordered his Fatah terror cells to operate under pseudonyms. In the early 1970’s he renamed several Fatah murder squads the Black September Organization while publicly claiming that they were ‘breakaway’ units completely unrelated to Fatah or to himself.” (e)
The whole point of this was to present an image of PLO/Fatah’s alleged ‘relative moderation.’ And, indeed, the alleged ‘split’ in PLO/Fatah was being represented like this: Arafat and Abbas, running ‘standard’ PLO/Fatah, were ‘moderates’ because they were considering ‘peace,’ whereas ‘rival’ PLO/Fatah in Damascus, backed by the Iran-Syria axis, wanted nothing to do with peace. As “one Western diplomat with Palestinian contacts said, ‘By definition, the groups that are in Damascus are not part of the moderate mainstream P.L.O., which has taken tentative steps towards a peace settlement.’ ” (d) By definition, you see?
But guess what? When Amal, a different Iranian-backed group began—against Iranian wishes—to attack ‘rival’ PLO/Fatah in Damascus, Arafat and Abbas joined together with their supposed enemies. And then Amal accused Teheran’s mediator, who was trying to stop the fighting, of being “ ‘an agent of Arafat.’ ” (f)
All of this contradicts the official narrative of Iranian-Syrian displeasure with Arafat and Abbas.
By the time the ‘Peace Process’ lobbying was in high gear, in 1987-88, Iran was denouncing PLO/Fatah’s ‘peace’ moves as a betrayal of the Palestinian cause, and meanwhile PLO/Fatah, which now represented itself as a reborn ‘dove’ that no longer supported terrorism, publicly criticized Iranian terror.
But of course this was all grammatically required by Abbas’ ‘Plan of Phases’ strategy.
That strategy would have PLO/Fatah promise ‘no more terrorism’ in exchange for territory, then use that territory as a platform from which to annihilate Israel. For this to be sold as a ‘peace process,’ Westerners and Israelis needed to believe that the ‘born again’ PLO/Fatah really wanted peace, and so criticism of Iranian leaders (who continued to chant “Death to Israel” as part of their daily ritual) was at this juncture obligatory.
All of which had been foreseen. Abbas, recall, had announced the ‘Plan of Phases’ strategy to Arab reporters in Teheran, after being invited there by Khomeini to celebrate the Iranian Revolution that Abbas himself had engineered. It was understood from the start that, at the moment of ‘Peace Process’ launch, a theater of Iranian and PLO/Fatah ‘enmity’ would have to be staged—there was, grammatically, no other way to do this.
SOURCES IN THIS FOOTNOTE:
(a) “8 SHIPS DESTROYED OFF IRANIAN PORT, IRAQI FORCES SAY”; The New York Times; May 26, 1984, Saturday, Late City Final Edition; Section 1; Page 11, Column 6; Foreign Desk; 974 words; By JUDITH MILLER
(b) “War, Arab Feuding Leave Arafat, PLO in Disarray; Gulf War and Arab Feuding Leave Arafat and PLO in Disarray”; The Washington Post, December 14, 1980, Sunday, Final Edition, First Section; A1, 1487 words, By Loren Jenkins, Washington Post Foreign Servic
(c) “TERRORISTS REPORTEDLY TRAINED IN IRAN”; The New York Times; December 30, 1985, Monday, Late City Final Edition; Section A; Page 6, Column 1; Foreign Desk; 1262 words; By JOHN TAGLIABUE
(d) “ABU NIDAL BACKING IS SAID TO BE WIDE”; The New York Times; January 19, 1986, Sunday, Late City Final Edition; SECTION: Section 1; Part 1, Page 7, Column 1; Foreign Desk; 795 words; By ELAINE SCIOLINO
(e) "Our World: The longest-running big lie";
The Jerusalem Post; Jan. 1, 2007 19:40 | Updated Jan. 2, 2007 17:39; By
(f) “30 DIE IN LEBANON AS SYRIANS AND MOSLEMS CLASH”; The New York Times; December 21, 1986, Sunday, Late City Final Edition; SECTION: Section 1; Part 1, Page 22, Column 4; Foreign Desk; LENGTH: 457 words; BYLINE: Reuters
 “PLO figure: Iran, Palestine in deal
for all-out cooperation”; IRNA; 11 August 2015.
1991: Bush Sr.'s administration
forced Israel to participate in the Oslo process, which brought the PLO into
the West Bank and Gaza; from “IS THE US AN ALLY OF ISRAEL?: A Chronological
look at the evidence”; Historical and
Investigative Research; by Francisco Gil-White.
 “Grand Theater: The US, The PLO, and
the Ayatollah Khomeini: Why did the US government, in 1979, delegate to the
PLO the task of negotiating the safety of American hostages at the US embassy
in Tehran?”; Historical and
Investigative Research; 10 December 2005; by Francisco Gil-White
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