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Red Thunder
01-18-2005, 07:42 AM
From CNN:
Link: http://www.cnn.com/2005/ALLPOLITICS/01/16/hersh.iran/

Journalist: U.S. planning for possible attack on Iran
White House says report is 'riddled with inaccuracies'

Monday, January 17, 2005 Posted: 8:11 AM EST (1311 GMT)


WASHINGTON (CNN) -- The Bush administration has been carrying out secret reconnaissance missions to learn about nuclear, chemical and missile sites in Iran in preparation for possible airstrikes there, journalist Seymour Hersh said Sunday.

The effort has been under way at least since last summer, Hersh said on CNN's "Late Edition."

In an interview on the same program, White House Communications Director Dan Bartlett said the story was "riddled with inaccuracies."

"I don't believe that some of the conclusions he's drawing are based on fact," Bartlett said.

Iran has refused to dismantle its nuclear program, which it insists is legal and is intended solely for civilian purposes.

Hersh said U.S. officials were involved in "extensive planning" for a possible attack -- "much more than we know."

"The goal is to identify and isolate three dozen, and perhaps more, such targets that could be destroyed by precision strikes and short-term commando raids," he wrote in "The New Yorker" magazine, which published his article in editions that will be on newsstands Monday.

Hersh is a veteran journalist who was the first to write about many details of the abuses of prisoners Abu Ghraib in Baghdad.

He said his information on Iran came from "inside" sources who divulged it in the hope that publicity would force the administration to reconsider.

"I think that's one of the reasons some of the people on the inside talk to me," he said.

Hersh said the government did not answer his request for a response before the story's publication, and that his sources include people in government whose information has been reliable in the past.

Hersh said Bush, Vice President Dick Cheney and Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld view Bush's re-election as "a mandate to continue the war on terrorism," despite problems with the U.S.-led war in Iraq.

Last week, the effort to find weapons of mass destruction in Iraq -- the Bush administration's stated primary rationale for the war -- was halted after having come up empty.

The secret missions in Iran, Hersh said, have been authorized in order to prevent similar embarrassment in the event of military action there. (Full story)

"The planning for Iran is going ahead even though Iraq is a mess," Hersh said. "I think they really think there's a chance to do something in Iran, perhaps by summer, to get the intelligence on the sites."

He added, "The guys on the inside really want to do this."

Hersh identified those inside people as the "neoconservative" civilian leadership in the Pentagon. That includes Rumsfeld, Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz and Undersecretary of Defense Doug Feith -- "the sort of war hawks that we talk about in connection with the war in Iraq."

And he said the preparation goes beyond contingency planning and includes detailed plans for air attacks:

"The next step is Iran. It's definitely there. They're definitely planning ... But they need the intelligence first."

Emphasizing 'diplomatic initiatives'
Bartlett said the United States is working with its European allies to help persuade Iran not to pursue nuclear weapons.

Asked if military action is an option should diplomacy fail, Bartlett said, "No president at any juncture in history has ever taken military options off the table."

But Bush "has shown that he believes we can emphasize the diplomatic initiatives that are under way right now," he said.

Hersh said U.S. officials believe that a U.S. attack on Iran might provoke an uprising by Iranians against the hard-line religious leaders who run the government. Similar arguments were made ahead of the invasion of Iraq, when administration officials predicted U.S. troops would be welcomed as liberators.

And Hersh said administration officials have chosen not to include conflicting points of view in their deliberations -- such as predictions that any U.S. attack would provoke a wave of nationalism that would unite Iranians against the United States.

"As people say to me, when it comes to meetings about this issue, if you don't drink the Kool-Aid, you can't go to meetings," he said. "That isn't a message anybody wants to hear."

The plans are not limited to Iran, he said.

"The president assigned a series of findings and executive orders authorizing secret commando groups and other special forces units to conduct covert operations against suspected terrorist targets in as many as 10 nations in the Middle East and South Asia," he wrote.

Under the secret plans, the war on terrorism would be led by the Pentagon, and the power of the CIA would be reduced, Hersh wrote in his article.

"It's sort of a great victory for Donald Rumsfeld, a bureaucratic victory," Hersh told CNN.

He said: "Since the summer of 2002, he's been advocating, 'Let me run this war, not the CIA. We can do it better. We'll send our boys in. We don't have to tell their local military commanders. We don't have to tell the ambassadors. We don't have to tell the CIA station chiefs in various countries. Let's go in and work with the bad guys and see what we can find out.'"

Hersh added that the administration has chipped away at the CIA's power and that newly appointed CIA Director Porter Goss has overseen a purge of the old order.

"He's been committing sort-of ordered executions'" Hersh said. "He's been -- you know, people have been fired, they've been resigning."

The target of the housecleaning at the CIA, he said, has been intelligence analysts, some of whom are seen as "apostates -- as opposed to being true believers."

RedFanAlways1966
01-18-2005, 09:00 AM
Ah... it is Seymour Hersh again.

Hey, Seymour... the United States plans many attacks against various nations all the time. It is called "not getting caught with your pants down". Militaries and their leaders have done this for thousands of years. Nothing new. And since Iran can very well be considered a threat to the free world, it makes good sense that our military leaders would do this. If they didn't, then they should be canned immediately and sent back to KP duties.

Good to know that Hersh needs to tell the world about "secret" reconnaissance missions... to make a buck for himself. They are secret for a darn good reason. Thank God Seymour was not around during WWII so he could give all the secrets to our enemies.

I'll venture to guess that the same has been done for North Korea. But I'll let Seymour let all the secrets out of the bag. And I'll let him tell these dangerous nations that we are sending secret reconn missions. It is important that we tell our enemies what we are doing. But, to Seymour's surprise I am sure, the Iranis probably alreday know that the big-bad United States is spying on them and their programs. As they are probably spying on us. OH... this is another thing that has been taking places between not-so-friendly nations for thousands of years.

All hail Seymour... the sharer of secrets.

Redsfaithful
01-18-2005, 09:48 AM
It's really hilarious that you look down on Seymour Hersh. He's probably the most credible journalist in America, and one of the very few doing any real investigative reporting.

M2, if you read this thread could you say a few words about Hersh and the journalism community? What's your opinion of the guy?

Redsfaithful
01-18-2005, 09:50 AM
I remember you downplaying Hersh when it came to Abu Ghraib RFA. You turned out to be pretty wrong on that one, maybe you should step back and take what Hersh is saying more seriously as a result.

Unassisted
01-18-2005, 10:10 AM
This is certainly a popular rumor.

Wonder what Jimmy Carter thinks of the idea?

RedFanAlways1966
01-18-2005, 10:59 AM
I remember you downplaying Hersh when it came to Abu Ghraib RFA. You turned out to be pretty wrong on that one, maybe you should step back and take what Hersh is saying more seriously as a result.

Not so sure how wrong I was, RF. I think Seymour tried to tie the prison incident to those high up in the chain of command. Or at least he insinuated it. He also makes lots of insinuations above. Labeling (again) many in the administration as warhawks. Saying that some were ready to invade Iran at any time. I don't buy it. Especially since it is Seymour. Seymour makes a living off of badmouthing the Pentagon, the White House and all aspects related to war. No one likes war (Seymour thinks some of our leaders do... or his inside sources say so). But some seem to get in the spotlight when there is one (Seymour).

But wait... Seymour has "inside sources". Ever read the National Enquirer? Every story starts off with, "Inside sources have said...". People can believe in Seymour. Sometimes Seymour will claim something and be partially right, but mostly wrong about his high-level accusations. It is a free country and Seymour can write as he pleases (unlike journalists in the old Iraq or in Iran). And some people will believe whatever new revelation his inside sources tell him. Those people, the ones who take Seymour's word for gold, are allowed to believe as they please. Inside sources don't convince me. But that is why I don't subscribe to the National Enquirer either. But a lot of people do (and a lot believe Seymour).

Redsfaithful
01-18-2005, 11:12 AM
I think Seymour tried to tie the prison incident to those high up in the chain of command.

And we later found out that Rumsfeld authorized torture. So you're willing to admit that Hersh was right on that one?

http://www.usatoday.com/news/washington/2004-06-22-rumsfeld-abuse-usat_x.htm


The alert set in motion a review that culminated with a Nov. 27, 2002, "action memo" in which Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld approved interrogation techniques that included "removal of clothing" and "inducing stress by use of detainee's fears (e.g. dogs)."

Rumsfeld also approved placing detainees in "stress positions," such as standing for up to 4 hours, though he apparently found this approach unimpressive. Rumsfeld, who works at a stand-up desk, scrawled on the memo, "I stand for 8-10 hours a day. Why is standing limited to four hours? D.R."

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A23373-2004Jun7.html


In August 2002, the Justice Department advised the White House that torturing al Qaeda terrorists in captivity abroad "may be justified," and that international laws against torture "may be unconstitutional if applied to interrogations" conducted in President Bush's war on terrorism, according to a newly obtained memo.

And our new attorney general on torture:

http://msnbc.msn.com/id/4989436/site/newsweek/


Gonzales concluded in stark terms: "In my judgment, this new paradigm renders obsolete Geneva's strict limitations on questioning of enemy prisoners and renders quaint some of its provisions."

But keep thinking that Hersh is wrong.

I don't think we're going to invade Iran. For that to happen Iraq would have to magically become a functioning civil democracy so that we could withdraw our troops and go attack someone else.

Iraq isn't going to be a functioning safe democracy any time soon, so unless the Bush administration starts a draft we're not going to be doing any other invading. So I guess that's the one silver lining in all of this, screwing up in Iraq means we can't screw up somewhere else.

pedro
01-18-2005, 11:20 AM
I don't think we're going to invade Iran. For that to happen Iraq would have to magically become a functioning civil democracy so that we could withdraw our troops and go attack someone else.

Iraq isn't going to be a functioning safe democracy any time soon, so unless the Bush administration starts a draft we're not going to be doing any other invading. So I guess that's the one silver lining in all of this, screwing up in Iraq means we can't screw up somewhere else.

I don't think we're going to invade, but it isn't out of the question that we could bomb them.

Redsfaithful
01-18-2005, 11:34 AM
I don't think we're going to invade, but it isn't out of the question that we could bomb them.

Yeah, good point.

Red Thunder
01-18-2005, 11:41 AM
I don't think we're going to invade, but it isn't out of the question that we could bomb them.

If there actually will be something worth bombing.


Last week, the effort to find weapons of mass destruction in Iraq -- the Bush administration's stated primary rationale for the war -- was halted after having come up empty.

pedro
01-18-2005, 11:53 AM
If there actually will be something worth bombing.

I'm not in favor of it but it is consistent with how we handled Iraq prior to the invasion.

I think it would be a mistake b/c Iran is the country in the middle east most likely to become a meaningiful democracy IMO. They have a relatively educated populace, and they are far enough down the road of theocratic government that many of the young people appear to be ready for something else.

RedFanAlways1966
01-18-2005, 12:26 PM
And we later found out that Rumsfeld authorized torture. So you're willing to admit that Hersh was right on that one?

And our new attorney general on torture. But keep thinking that Hersh is wrong.

Iraq isn't going to be a functioning safe democracy any time soon, so unless the Bush administration starts a draft we're not going to be doing any other invading. So I guess that's the one silver lining in all of this, screwing up in Iraq means we can't screw up somewhere else.

Torture? What is the definition of torture? Gee, Mr. Hand... I don't know (to use a Fast Times quote!). I would venture a wild guess here... differing people have differing opnions on the definition of torture. I trust the opnions of our leaders on this matter much more than I trust Seymour or some loony-tune Red Cross peon making accusations. No... I do not believe that Seymour was right. Of course his "inside sources" are unknown. How can we trust anyone who will not name their "inside sources"?

New Attorney General? Reading those leftist blogs way too much I see. Did you think it was hypocritical for Sen. Ted Kennedy to put down our new Attorney General over some sort of drowning incident? Just wondering b/c I must have missed your post that took Teddy to task for this. You weren't born yet, but Teddy knows a thing or two about drownings. He also knows how to swim to freedom... by himself. But that is okay. It is your side that furthers divides this great country. People with morals have spoken though... depsite the claims of you, Jesse, Barbara, John-boy Conyers and that woman form Cleveland.

Back to the draft argument again? Speaking of WRONG... how long have you been screaming about this draft thing? Better happen soon. It is starting to look like another bogus complaint from the left. Almost Michael Moore like. Those moral people are too smart for that. They have spoken.

westofyou
01-18-2005, 12:31 PM
Ted Kennedy?

A guy just went to jail for 10 years after following orders and somehow Ted Kennedy's name is brought up in a thread about torture in Iraq?

Color me impressed.

RedsBaron
01-18-2005, 12:32 PM
I don't think we're going to invade, but it isn't out of the question that we could bomb them.
I hope we do not. Iran's rulers are a threat to us and world peace, but the Iranian people themselves are not necessarily a threat. I am skeptical regarding the chances of a successful "surgical strike" on Iran's nuclear facilities and concerned regarding the repercussions of such a strike.

pedro
01-18-2005, 12:35 PM
FWIW, here is the definition of torture in the Geneva Convention Treaty.

link (http://www.hrweb.org/legal/cat.html#Article%201.1)

Red Thunder
01-18-2005, 12:38 PM
I think it would be a mistake b/c Iran is the country in the middle east most likely to become a meaningiful democracy IMO. They have a relatively educated populace, and they are far enough down the road of theocratic government that many of the young people appear to be ready for something else.

If you consider the history of Iran, it's kind of ironic why and how the current regime got into command. In 1953, the CIA plotted with Iranian Army Officers to overthrow the popularly elected government that had taken possession of the rich oil resources long exploited by Britain. Fearing a precedent that might jeopardise Western oil interests in the Middle East, the CIA secretly returned the deposed Shah of Iran to power and restored the oil wells to British firms. As a result, the United States gained a loyal ally on the Soviet border. This finally led the Iranian citicens in 1979 to support the islamic revolution which promised them more personal freedom and more independence from western influences and dictations.

During the 80's, the US strongly supported Saddam Hussein who initiated the Persian Gulf war. In 1987 the US even took part in combat actions and destroyed large parts of the Iranian navy to support (military weaker) Hussein, who was a good friend who handled in the interest of the US back then. He just wasn't able to get the job done and evidently searched for an easier enemy (Kuwait) with equally rich oil resources to defeat. Just imagine Hussein thinking what he actually did wrong ... fighting against Iran he was supported by the US, attacking Kuwait he suddenly becomes the scapegoat.

Bush got Hussein removed, but achieved little else up-to-date in Iraq. I have doubts that he will achieve anything in Iran as well. As Iran is not even an indirect threat to the US, military action against a sovereign country are not justified, in my opinion.

I don't say this to pump up the blood of some patriotic posters here, but I think some of you lack the ability to critically question the motives of your government. It has also supported dictators in the past, as long as it served US interests. If humanitarian help is the main goal of politics, why are no troops in Sudan, North Korea, or a dozen African countries where millions of people suffer from hunger and dictators?

pedro
01-18-2005, 12:40 PM
RFA, for someone with such great "morals" you sure aren't very polite.

Johnny Footstool
01-18-2005, 12:45 PM
Last week, the effort to find weapons of mass destruction in Iraq -- the Bush administration's stated primary rationale for the war -- was halted after having come up empty.

Funny how the conservatives don't really like to respond to this.


It is your side that furthers divides this great country. People with morals have spoken though... depsite the claims of you, Jesse, Barbara, John-boy Conyers and that woman form Cleveland.

The LEFT further divides this great country? Why? Because 48% of all Americans won't fall into formation and blindly march along with the self-proclaimed "people with morals"?

So basically, your position is that those who disagree with you are without morals. So I guess 48% of the population of this country are without morals, and the 51% who voted Republican are all saints?

I suggest that ignorant attitudes like this are what "further divides this great country."

Redsfaithful
01-18-2005, 12:48 PM
Torture? What is the definition of torture?

I like the Geneva Convention's definition. What definition do you like?

Did Ted Kennedy do something personal to you? You manage to bring him up in just about every thread. I'll bet Ted Kennedy picks the Patriots to win this weekend, maybe you should go rant about that in the NFL playoffs thread.

Redsfaithful
01-18-2005, 12:50 PM
John-boy Conyers

African-Americans don't really like being called "boy" if you didn't know. I'm sure you didn't intend for that to come off the wrong way, but you might want to tone it down a notch or someone might get the wrong idea.

CbusRed
01-18-2005, 12:53 PM
RFA, for someone with such great "morals" you sure aren't very polite.

:cry:

pedro
01-18-2005, 01:01 PM
:cry:

yeah I know how much it saddens you when people aren't polite. thanks for the support.

CbusRed
01-18-2005, 01:03 PM
yeah I know how much it saddens you when people aren't polite. thanks for the support.



No, actually, I just felt left out so I figured I would join in on the crying. :thumbup:

Redsfaithful
01-18-2005, 01:11 PM
No, actually, I just felt left out so I figured I would join in on the crying. :thumbup:

I'll bet you feel left out of a lot of things.

CbusRed
01-18-2005, 01:20 PM
I'll bet you feel left out of a lot of things.

Yeah, Like baby killing, outrageous protesting, whining, hating our president, losing elections, crying, tree-hugging, being different for the sake of being different ect..


I feel left out of all of those. ;)

CbusRed
01-18-2005, 01:21 PM
I'll bet you feel left out of a lot of things.

Oh, and I almost forgot.





:cry:

LvJ
01-18-2005, 01:21 PM
:MandJ:

westofyou
01-18-2005, 01:25 PM
Babykilling?

Keep going Cbus I'm sure you can stop any discourse you deem "stupid" or "upsetting"

Keep your eye on the ball big guy.

CbusRed
01-18-2005, 01:26 PM
Babykilling?

Keep going Cbus I'm sure you can stop any discourse you deem "stupid" or "upsetting"

Keep your eye on the ball big guy.



:cry:

zombie-a-go-go
01-18-2005, 01:30 PM
People with morals have spoken though... depsite the claims of you, Jesse, Barbara, John-boy Conyers and that woman form Cleveland.



I suggest that ignorant attitudes like this are what "further divides this great country."


No, actually, I just felt left out so I figured I would join in on the crying.


Yeah, Like baby killing, outrageous protesting, whining, hating our president, losing elections, crying, tree-hugging, being different for the sake of being different ect..



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