Tom Usher wrote or added | This is totally one-sided and hypocritical. There has never been a speck of evidence provided showing that Iran has a nuclear-weapons program. Meanwhile, Mordechai Vanunu sits in prison again in Israel for blowing the whistle on Israel's once secret nuclear-weapons program that it still refuses to admit exists. Israel also still refuses to come under the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty inspection regime. Shame on every government that voted for more sanctions against Iran when there is zero evidence provided. Shame on every nation that did not support the Goldstone Report that clearly showed Israel committed war crimes against Gaza (the same Israel that has been behind the unethical and hypocritical push for more and more sanctions against Iran — Iran, a nation that hasn't started hostilities with any other nation in centuries, unlike Israel and the US). To the US and Israel, I say that no group of nations or people can hold onto power by evil means. It has never happened and never will. Be prepared to fall and to fall hard for your evil.
Thomas Smitherman: But what are the Russians and Chinese doing? They did this last time with Iraq...they voted for the sanctions and for all the needless inspections and tough-bossy language, but never intended to back the war. But how does backing the sanctions do anything but legitimise the eventual military action? For once, I am clueless as to their strategy, unless they think they would provoke a wider war (and maybe they get specific inside threats?) by not letting it be as obvious as possible that the grounds for war are BS. Do you have a theory?
There are number of things going on. First, there are deals that have been made. Theirs lots of money (promises) involved — primarily European but also American. American representatives have been talking "military" with both Russia and China of course, and without Israel in the room. In that setting, they (the Americans) can say that they will be able to keep Israel in check (on any sort of leash) only if the Americans can be seen as doing this (sanctioning Iran) for the Israelis. Take seriously the statements from the Pentagon that the Pentagon is losing patience with Israel stirring up anti-Americanism by being so Goddamn ruthless all the time. Of course, the US has been the same; but being the superpower, the US can bribe all the regional leaders. Israel has much less to offer, at least at this point.
Another aspect is that Russia and China have bought Iran time during which the relationship of Israel with the rest of the world will continue deteriorating. If Russia and China had said "No" without at the same time entering into a mutual defense pact with Iran, Israel would have been greatly tempted to attack Iran and soon to change the subject from Gaza for one but to suck the US into fighting with Israel since wider hostilities would certainly result. Unlike Saddam Hussein, who was in a position of only being able to attempt to bluff, Iran has not made idle threats about fighting back.
Also, Russia can now back away from supplying Iran with anti-missile defense that raised red flags at the Pentagon concerning Russia. Despite all the Israel and neocon finger pointing at Iran about supplying Lebanon, we all know that it was Russian weaponry that drove the Israelis out, who pitched a temper tantrum at their lost "deterrence" and had to shower Lebanon with millions of cluster bomblets — babies.
Russia is coming back in strength, but it's no conventional match for the US right now and it knows it. China has just never been one for foreign wars. They fight on their own territory and in immediately surrounding nations, but for them to engage against the US in the whole theater of operation that would result with a shooting war between Israel and Iran is just not something they have any experience with. Yes, Iran is right there next to them; but the land mass is large and difficult, and how the Chinese could ever get near the place in naval terms, what with the US carrier groups there, I can't see them even trying unless they want to lose their navy.
Also, the US would feel pressured to let go with the space-based weapons if so many nations all started fighting simultaneously. We'd be at DEFCON 1 in an instant. Stealth bombers would be everywhere. Cruise missile from subs would be everywhere too. People are crazy if they think the US is stretched too thin to fight all over the place at once. The Air Force and Navy haven't been stretched since WWII. Also, the CIA is much more militarized than it lets on. The privatized mercenary corporations are a major factor too. If we're only talking about destroying the other sides' air and naval power, we don't need boots on the ground to do it. That's the problem. It becomes tempting. Who though wants to gamble with being second in resorting to nuclear weapons? Do we have a Star Wars capacity at all?
Russia and China are also anti-Muslim. Both fight Muslims internally within their empires. Neither wants to see an imperial caliphate rise again out of Islam. It could if the West and Russia and China stayed out of it though. Of course, Israel would have no options then but to use lots of nuclear weapons — Armageddon.
Also, Putin looks West more than toward China or Iran. He's a bit nostalgic for Peter the Great. Russia is cozier with France and Germany than American neocons care publicly to admit. There's no doubt that Putin thinks the US was insane under George W. Bush. Medvedev and Obama have changed the situation for him somewhat. Obama won't be as rash toward Russia. George poked at Putin in Georgia.
Brazil and Turkey have also given Russia and China some cover too. Brazil and Turkey are vastly more important than the casual observer thinks. Brazil is in very good shape relative to most nations and Turkey's economy has been very strong too. Brazil is sitting on vast oil reserves just off shore. Lula has been a very steady hand who has not really had a major slip since shortly after he took office.
All of that said, I must say that I hate the Great Game. I'm totally opposed to it. Military and coercive-economic imperialism stink and never work. I wrote in no uncertain terms that Russia and China would be stupid to vote for sanctions, and I still say it was dumb. What they should have done and should still do is to stop playing the imperial game. It's in the genes though for the more sociopathic of humanity to be extremely grandiose in very shortsighted ways.
Iran is not exempt from negative criticism though. Ahmadinejad is prideful, even if he thinks he's not. I'm not suggesting that he should cower, but he could do more to take away Israel's ability to get others into a position where those others just can't say that Iran has done what Saddam did, which was to allow the weapons inspectors to comb the country. No one has suggested such invasive measures with Iran, but neither has Iran been just open enough that Obama would have to pull a blatant George W. Bush before attacking Iran — something that would split the US in two, internally coming to blows.
There are other points, but this is already a very long reply for Facebook.
The ideology of Jesus is going to prevail. It's inevitable. The way of the overlord doesn't work. Sooner or later, humanity will reach that conclusion. It will be a great day. I wish it were already here.
Thomas Smitherman: Most of what you say is true or would be my best guess as well. At the same time, I don't think it is fair to say Russia and China are "anti-Muslim" and afraid of a caliphate. The caliphate is a pipe dream. Nobody takes it seriously except the dupes and patsies of al-CIAda. The US, however, uses Muslim fighters on occasion against both countries (I actually could tell you somel stories about attempted US manipulations of "Uyghurstan"). Anyway, the point is there is no reason for Russia and China to be afraid of Iran, which does not fund Sunni militants (shhh don't tell Bill Kristol).
That Russia and China might not bother defending Iran is almost certainly true, though I think Russia is actively providing them with weapons and has never really cared what the Pentagon thinks.
About Putin, he was certainly aiming to be like Peter the Great at first, in his liberal-tsar years (first term). But in time, he came to seriously promote Eurasianist geopoliticians (google Aleksandr Dugin...we could also mention ex-Rodina leader Dmitrii Rogozin). Perhaps this was planned or perhaps he just realised while in power what the gameplan is and it doesn't include anything good for Russia. With a more Eurasianist policy, they have been moderately successful at pushing the Americans further out of ex-Soviet Central Asia.
One can oppose the Great Game, but most countries are forced to play it. Only those controlling the world's top banks and top militaries can stop it, short of Divine Intervention. Perhaps Putin allows these wars because they are far more stupid for the US than it is for Russia to let its allies get rolled over. America can't do anything with Iran. Israel definitely can't. One day, they will collapse, and, at least for a few years, there won't be a dominant empire that threatens to break Russia and China into tiny fiefdoms run by atamans.
Well, Thomas, the Caliphate is only not a concern so long as any would-be pan-Islamic leader(s) are suppressed by the other imperial forces in the world. If all the imperialists backed off and barring any mitigating or redemptive acts by the other religions and nation-states or groups to counter its rise, a caliphate of sorts would result. The last thing the Anglo-dominated Atlanticists want to see is a new Suleiman I. Saddam Hussein wanted to fill those shoes albeit from a more secular/socialist/statist angle.
Russia is Christian Orthodox again more and more but with some "liberalized" tendencies — not all good. Russians, ethnically, are not Muslims. They have enmity with the Chechens and other Muslim "rebels." Russia used the sectarian divide when it did it's own false-flag Moscow Apartment bombings falsely pointing at violent "Muslim" extremists, not that there aren't real, violent, Muslim extremists.
China is really against the Muslims in the form of the Uyghurs, who are, no surprise to you, Turkish — small world. China is still very much anti-spiritual and therefore also anti-God. Although for commercial (read mammon-greedy) reasons, they've ever-so-slightly relaxed the standards since Mao.
As for the US and the Uyghurs, I know. The CIA was deeply involved in stirring it up and funding it, etc. The Han are certainly well aware of it, as they are well aware of the CIA in Tibet siding with the Dalai Lama, who is no pacifist and no advocate for doing away with elitism. He's a temporal, bloodline King first and High Priest a very distance second.
Iran doesn't fund or supply Wahhabists for Wahhabism's sake, of course. They do though help those who have syncretistic connections with the Brotherhood. As for Bill Kristol, oh man, Straussianism is insane — esoteric/exoteric, Greek rationalism versus Jewish mysticism my foot. The man was a secular humanist of the dark side. He was a lover of the "noble lie." I hate it with a burning passion. Plato was full of crap — the liar from the beginning. Paul Wolfowitz and all the other Anglo-American-Israeli Empire builders, including the utterly stupid Christian-Zionists, are the most dangerous people on the planet.
"I think Russia is actively providing them with weapons and has never really cared what the Pentagon thinks." Oh, no, Thomas, Russia dwells on the Pentagon night and day. If you mean that Russia will do what the Pentagon doesn't always want, then I agree with you. However, if you mean to say that Russia won't do it's own carrot-and-stick act, then we disagree. What Russia doesn't want is a premature military conflict with the US and EU (NATO). Russia is getting stronger again but is far from where it was conventionally. It's had to threaten, and mean it, a first nuclear strike —something it used to be wholly against. The neocons preemptive/preventative garbage "forced" them into it.
"About Putin, he was certainly aiming to be like Peter the Great at first, in his liberal-tsar years (first term). But in time, he came to seriously promote Eurasianist geopoliticians (google Aleksandr Dugin...we could also mention ex-Rodina leader Dmitrii Rogozin)." Well, Putin hasn't abandoned his Greater Russia ideas. His hand was forced though because George W. Bush's neocons, who are largely Jewish anti-Russians (pogrom remembers forever), had other ideas for the upstart, Putin. They've tried to marginalize Russia all along and do that with great success in the US but not so well in Europe. France and Germany do want a European Russia. They have to get over the Germanic/Slavic differences though. The Roman Catholic/Orthodox schism still factors too. This is all mundane mind you, not that I disengage. I'm just saying that you and I both know that there are real spiritual forces at work whether the Chris Hitchens of the world are talking or not.
As for Dmitry Rogozin, he decided to follow me first on Twitter. He liked my position on the whole Georgian-breakaway War episode. Putin uses him because Putin too is a nationalist and expansionistic (always was), although he's not ready to be hugely aggressive in land grabbing. He believes in the Russian Empire though.
What happened to Putin was that he was slapped in the face by Bush. Bush did to Putin what Bush did to McCain in Carolina: Dirty tricks — pretend to be warn and friendly — "looking into his heart," etc., and then stabbing him in the back even before Putin's bouquets to the Bush women had wilted or his blush had faded from his face.
Bush played him, and Putin isn't going to be burned again by being sucked in via friendly smiles and extended hands for shaking. That's why, knowing Obama is Bush-44 (Clinton was Bush-42), the Russian leadership refused to shake his hand the first time he was there in Russia. It wasn't racism but anti neolib.
"One can oppose the Great Game, but most countries are forced to play it. Only those controlling the world's top banks and top militaries can stop it, short of Divine Intervention. " Well, one isn't really forced to play it but wants to. We are the divine intervention when we talk about, "Thy kingdom come." When are you going to join the Christian Commons? — no pressure, just asking.
Peace, and thanks for commenting. Chime in as much as you're moved to by the Holy Spirit.