Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
November 10, 2013

France Blocks U.S. Pivot To Persia

France has been and is a major nuclear proliferator in the Middle East. While it worked and works to enable some countries to build nuclear weapons it wants to deny any and all civil nuclear capabilities to others. The primary reasons are greed and a certain craving for its former grandeur which today is no longer supported by the necessary economic and military means.

FAS: Nuclear Weapons - Israel

On 3 October 1957, France and Israel signed a revised agreement calling for France to build a 24 MWt reactor (although the cooling systems and waste facilities were designed to handle three times that power) and, in protocols that were not committed to paper, a chemical reprocessing plant. This complex was constructed in secret, and outside the IAEA inspection regime, by French and Israeli technicians at Dimona, in the Negev desert under the leadership of Col. Manes Pratt of the IDF Ordinance Corps.
Saudi Gazette, Oct 3, 2013 France ready to be KSA’s strategic partner in nuke, renewable energy
Speaking to the Saudi Gazette, the French Ambassador to the Kingdom said “the aim of this meeting is very clear, France has been the first country to sign government to government agreement on nuclear and energy because we do think that taking it into account the huge program the Saudi government wants to implement in the nuclear field and France has a lot to bring in terms of the best nuclear technology in the world.”
France 24 Hollande backs Israel on Iran nuclear threat
A day after Benjamin Netanyahu urged France to take a tough stance on Iran, French President François Hollande spoke to the Israeli Prime Minister by phone and promised French support.
Guardian Geneva talks end without deal on Iran's nuclear programme
Three gruelling days of high-level and high-stakes diplomacy came to an end in Geneva with no agreement on Iran's nuclear programme, after France blocked a stopgap deal aimed at defusing tensions and buying more time for negotiations.
[D]iplomats at the talks were furious with the role of the French foreign minister, Laurent Fabius, whom they accused of breaking ranks by revealing details of the negotiations as soon as he arrived in Geneva on Saturday morning, and then breaking protocol again by declaring the results to the press before Ashton and Zarif had arrived at the final press conference.
A temporary deal in Geneva would have been the first step for a larger nuclear deal which then could have brought Iran "in from the cold". This would have been the start of a "Pivot to Persia" after which the U.S. would have balanced its difficult relations with Israel and Saudi Arabia with friendly relations with Iran. Without such a realignment in the Middle East the U.S. will be militarily and financially incapable of executing its plans for a pivot to Asia.

France blew up the historic deal and, despite earlier signals from France, the other "western" countries involved were not prepared for this and their foreign ministers incapable of handling French intransigeance. This disunity within the P5+1 group negotiating with Iran will hamper all further negotiations. Who can Iran negotiate with if there is no united opposition?

The current break down gives the U.S. Congress and the Netanyahoo lackeys therein a chance to add further sanctions on Iran by attaching them to next weeks National Defense Authorization Act. But the P5+1 disunity is, at least in the short term, positive for Iran. No one can accuse it now of not being willing to negotiate and of not actively seeking a compromise. The sanctions Congress will enact are third party sanctions where it will "punish" other countries for dealing with Iran. As it is obviously not Iran that is holding up a deal those third party countries will be quite unwilling to follow such a U.S. Congress diktat. The sanction regime will thereby break down. Slowly first, but then with ever increasing speed.

It is dubious that France, Saudi Arabia and Israel will be capable of holding up an Iran deal for more than a year or so. There is a historic logic in a U.S. and general "western" pivot to Persia as such a pivot would allow to disentangle itself from the capricious "allies" it currently has in the Middle East. The hostile reaction of the U.S. public towards the attempt of waging an open war on Syria was a sign that historic changes in the current alliances are unavoidable.

Posted by b on November 10, 2013 at 10:05 UTC | Permalink


That would be the 'face' of the news, but maybe it's worth scratching a little deeper.
Everyone knows Saddam ended up hiding in an hole in the ground because he let IAEA target his military installations with GPS-enabled satellite phones they carried with them into, or up to, hidden vault doors of those facilities, giving USUK-NATO precision targeting.

So maybe the 'push' to 'resolve' inspection issues in return for a dangled 'carrot' of reduced (illegal) economic sanctions wasn't enough for Rouhani to roll over and let IAEA target Iran's underground nuclear facilities too. Obama couldn't stand two international failures, first the Syrian Putsch FAIL, then a (faux) Iranian Rapprochement FAIL? Nyet!

So consider this. Both Kerry and Hollande are Jews, and Zionophiles. And we know that Obama is Saudi's poodle, and that eventually America will 'put boots on the ground' in Damascus, in order to 'maintain security' at Syrian military bases, then turn off the radars and air defense systems, so Israel can fly covertly that dark alley to Tehran.

We know Boeing retrofitted Israeli fighter-bombers with nuclear launch rails (WSJ '10). We know Obama approved sale of nuclear bunker busters to Israel, and Hagel just approved sale of stealth radar-jammers and long-range inflight refueling tankers. IL's locked and loaded.

So while The Chosen wait for chess pieces to line up with operational readiness and the polls, it was a neat hat trick for Hollande to scotch the deal as a professional courtesy to Kerry-Bandar, for which the Saudis will now undoubtedly sign a fat FR nuclear buy deal.

Face it, MoAs. Iran is the NeoCon-Bankster end game, last non-Western banking system, the country ranked (formerly) #4 global oil and gas supply, and with lowest external foreign debt of any nation. Besides, Tehran has more far more jewels than the Queen or the Czar.
Don't lose sight of the forest for posturing politico trees. It's 'go time' for Tehran.

Posted by: PeeDee | Nov 10 2013 10:41 utc | 1

We know Obama approved sale of nuclear bunker busters to Israel
What are you talking about?

Posted by: Rowan Berkeley | Nov 10 2013 11:33 utc | 2

@ 1.
You wish...
When push came to shove, Syria + Russia wasn't pissy-little enough for the balls-free zone known as USrael. Iran + Russia + China is way too big for them.

Love the idea of the tankers though.
The blazing wreckage will look spectacular plunging into the sea in the wee small hours.
Try not to forget that this is the Missile Age. Iran & Friends haven't.

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Nov 10 2013 11:45 utc | 3

On Fox news commentary (article on Iran nuclear deal) there are more than 6,000 comments dissing Obama and praising....the French! Sometimes in a somewhat bewildered fashion, concluding that if the French have more sense than Obama, that just goes to show how rotten Obama is, how low he has sunk!

Whatever France’s reasons are for aligning to the Saudi-Israeli axis, or rather the anti-Assad and anti-Iran axis, Hollande is perhaps the most foolish politician around today.

Not only is he completely bereft of any political skills, he literally imho has a few screws loose. He lacks, amongst other things, basic logical reasoning, ex:

1. Leonarda, a 15-year-old Kosovar girl, was arrested by strong armed police on a school bus. Her parents finally (after years of procedures and complications) were under an expulsion order which some prefect decided to enforce, and they were all shipped off to Kosovo.

Humanitarians, associations, schools, parents, children and high schoolers (big demos), several factions in the Socialist party, all of the Left (to the left of the Socialists), went batshit. A fierce and very ugly media storm ensued. Leonarda appeared all over the media (not ethical imho.) Now such expulsions are very common in F: about 36 000 last year. F, when parents are expelled, expels the children along with them, so as not to break up the family (Human rights texts and the like.)

So what does Hollande do? He makes a presidential speech on the tee-vee super solemn and all...and invites Leonarda back to France!

The mind staggers. Leonarda has guts though - again, all over the media - she told him to stuff it while managing very minimal politeness and told him she would NEVER leave her family. Not only was the logic missing, but Hollande managed to get insulted in public by a 15 year-old victim!

2. The vaunted 75% tax on revenues above one million Euros (which is actually rather mild in comparison with say Switz.) that Hollande promised and has made him the brunt of the right and the likes of the Economist. So some bill was finally gotten together. Right on. The Constitutional Council axed it immediately. On what grounds? Equality facing the tax. F taxes households, not individuals. One can’t tax an individual (unless he is defined as a one-person household.) Households - families - with one large revenue would be penalised as compared to say families with the same earnings coming from more than one income. Apparently Hollande didn’t know the rules (he has never been married) or couldn’t figure out the math?

Might it have been a sneaky move to state he tried but failed, boo-hoo?

No - this is so basic even your Joe-6 saw it (and the internautes were on the case) or understands it when laid out. So, now the new idea is that biz. or the employer would pay the tax! That might (?), in principle (?), be legislated, but it is extremely bizarre, and would throw many Corps.. biz, into a whole new world...where you pay tax not on your earnings / profits / holdings (whatever shape, like property) but your costs!

So, as this is the Sunday funny ;), it looks like Hollande has a bit of a problem figuring out schemas that include tags like ‘friend’, ‘enemy’, ‘friend of an enemy’, ‘friend of two enemies’, ‘friend of a friend’, with little arrows etc.

OK it is not funny ...but throws a light on these Monarchic Republics, so called-democracies...and shows that when decline is steep wild greedy thoughts and mad alliances take hold. Note, as a last point, that Hollande apparently listens to no-one, there is nobody there who can advise him effectively. That is all without, of course, going into deeper geo-politics.

Hollande is going to Israel next week. (I read.)

Posted by: Noirette | Nov 10 2013 11:59 utc | 4

b, I think you misinterpret France's rationale. I think it's not greed, nor former grandeur, but rather the simple fact that, as in the US, or Britain, the political class is in the pocket of the zionist organizations that have been set up with that purpose. We shouldn't forget that the Dimona deal was made by a decadent IV republique, imediately followed by the return to power of the Gaulle and the restoration of french sovereignty, independent foreign policy, and the end of colonial adventures, and a diplomatic hostility towards the Israeli position. Sarkozy represented the end of what was left of Gaullisme, Hollande represents total and abject submission to zionism. Meanwhile, Fabius son, who pays no income tax, buy's a Paris flat for 7 million euros...

Posted by: estouxim | Nov 10 2013 12:02 utc | 5

Dubious that they can hold it up for a year???

Heck, it's unlikely that France will be able to hold out until Nov 20th.

After all, the idea that any president would accept the notion that the French - the FRENCH, for crying out loud! - have the right to stand between Uncle Sam and what he wants is simply ludicrous.

The important point here is that the P5+1 is an entirely ad-hoc organization. It is useful for the USA while every one of them toes the line, but if any one of them "goes rogue" then the USA can just dissolve the P5+1 and tell Tehran that they'll now talk one on one.

And if France complains, well, there's the door, dude...

Posted by: Johnboy | Nov 10 2013 12:20 utc | 6

The other "western" nations were not prepared for this?????? C'mon, what was NSA doing the past week or so?

Posted by: george | Nov 10 2013 12:33 utc | 7

I agree that the Iranians are now sitting pretty.

The sanctions were effective because the P5+1 had been able to show a (surprising) unity of purpose.

They were a BLOC, and a rock-solid one at that, and it was that unanimity that brought everyone else along with them.

No longer. There is an obvious split in that bloc, and it will become ever more apparent as the other members attempt to monster France between now and Nov 20.

Heck if Lavrov corners Fabius in a dark alley then call the police. And an ambulance..

But the P5+1 is now on borrowed time, precisely because once you get rat's in the ranks then "discipline" is shot to pieces.

The sanctions will crumble, and if the P5+1 tries to stop that the the retort will be: you guys can't even get your own shit together, so don't tell ME what to do.

Posted by: Johnboy | Nov 10 2013 12:34 utc | 8

Hollande is looking like a worse piece of shit than Sarkozy even. Pathetic.

France has now firmly aligned with the terrorist-apartheid axis. And for what? @4 is a very good analysis.

What must the Germans think when they see this kind of desperate grandstanding from their economic basketcase EU "partners"?

Posted by: guest77 | Nov 10 2013 13:26 utc | 9

Cyrus Safdari thinks that this was a setup and that the U.S. never intended a deal. That France only rode interference on the behalf of the U.S.

I don't think that's true. The U.S. and Obama have invested too much political capital in these talks for that to be the case. This version sounds more plausible to me.

Progress, but no deal yet, as Iran talks conclude

France believes that Iran should halt construction of the Arak heavy water reactor during the first phase of a nuclear agreement, which is envisioned to last for six months, during which a comprehensive deal would, in theory, be hammered out. Some other powers believe that Arak could be part of an end state deal, since it is not due to come on line until late 2014.

A former western diplomat said over the past year, France’s political director Jacques Audibert “has repeatedly assured the U.S. side that, if there is a deal in the offing, the French will not stand in the way, their hard-line posturing in past months notwithstanding,” he said, calling it “very surprising…the French are the holdup at this moment.”

But western diplomats privately did not dispute the basic narrative that was the case, and their disappointment.

Posted by: b | Nov 10 2013 13:33 utc | 10

French journalists are obedient to their masters (BTW Hollande is not jewish); after promoting Rifaat al Asad for 3 years, they now make the same U-turn as the NYT (here: and claim he is a pawn from Moscou!
compare to

It is a bunch of French MPs who have suddently decided in September to ask for an enquiry.

Just a year before, their was a camplain of rehabilitation in Paris Match
(Hollande's wife works there)
and in state-owned France24

al-Khaddam and Rif'at were both presented by French media as credible personalities already in 2011 (i tried to find some of the Le Monde and Liberation's articles of that time but didn't find them... i remember the tone, though), no matter what happened in Hama

or maybe the French are just intersting in bailing out their banks

Posted by: Mina | Nov 10 2013 13:36 utc | 11

Malbrunot of Le Figaro: CIA, Saudi Arabia and Jordan massively arming terrorists in Syria
Paris, (SANA)- Georges Malbrunot of Le Figaro newspaper revealed how the US, Saudi Arabia and Jordan have been supplying tons of weapons to the armed terrorist groups operating inside Syria, according to the Iranian Press TV.

The French reporter has provided details on how the US Central Intelligence Agency CIA is leading "massive arms deliveries" to the gunmen in Syria in coordination with Saudi Arabia and Jordan, in completion of his investigative reports proving the three countries' involvement in supporting the terrorists fighting in the country.

The (CIA), and Saudi Arabia and Jordan have supplied about 600 tons of weapons in 2013 alone to the armed groups in Syria.

"The Americans hold the key to these arms deliveries. Without them, they couldn’t happen. CIA agents lead convoys of arms deliveries joined by the Free Syrian Army and Jordanian secret services," Malbrunot said.

"The Saudis work behind the scene in charge of financing and arranging arms deliveries from eastern Europe to Jordan,” he added.

Malbrunot learned from sources that the weapons convoys are escorted by "unmanned aircraft guided from a CIA-led command center in Jordan", according to the Press TV report released Saturday.

Last month, Malbrunot recounted the details of this operation in Le Figaro quoting a terrorist he met as saying that there is a direct contact between the gunmen and CIA officials in coordination with Saudi Arabia and a number of countries of the so-called "Friends of Syria".

According to terrorist Anwar, convoys of cars carrying CIA and Jordanian intelligence agents and others fully loaded with weapons set off from Jordanian borders in the evening and head into the Syrian territories.

Once 3 km inside Syria, the American and Jordanian agents go back, while the convoy goes on towards Damascus Countryside at night on a Syrian army checkpoint- free road with U.S. surveillance drones flying over to warn against the presence of the Syrian army.

Malbrunot revealed in his report that 15 tons of weapons reach the terrorists operating in Damascus suburbs each week, while other convoys head for Daraa.

The weapons convoys include Kalashnikovs, rocket launchers, rifles and anti-aircraft and anti-tank guns, mostly funded by Saudi Arabia and sent onboard Saudi aircrafts to secret military airports in southern Jordan.

H. Said

Posted by: brian | Nov 10 2013 13:56 utc | 12

Gaullism was overturned by Sarkozy, as estouxim at 5 says.

Hollande was elected on the ticket of ‘A return to French Values etc. and a Normal President’, whatever that meant. Certainly nobody suspected alliance with Isr. as Sark had Jewish roots, Hollande has none, and one of the reasons ppl were suspicious of Strauss-Kahn was that he, Jewish himself by ‘roots’ but barely, or not in pubic anyway, had this hugely rich, famous French media-personality, Jewish wife.

Israelis loved Sark and hated, still hate? Hollande.

See for ex.

Edelestein declares French President persona non grata in Knesset. Jerusalem Post, 30 October 2013.

Hollande chose to address University students instead, one guesses that was all that was on offer?

Article includes these words:

New French Ambassador Patrick Maisonnave will not be invited to any official Knesset ceremonies, nor will other French dignitaries or ministers visiting here. Verboten! moves in diplo circles...

Other news says that Hollande himself refused to speak at the Knesset.

Same date, Ahram online:

So, to speak or not speak?

Now, apparently it will happen..Algemeiner on 10 November 2013:

And on 4 November 2013, Bibi, as quoted in Le Point, a French right-wing Mag or rag:

“Israel will deploy the Red Carpet for Hollande, he is a friend, a friend, of Israel ..”

In French:

This doesn’t help much to understand what is going on underground still I thought posting these oddities might be of interest.

Posted by: Noirette | Nov 10 2013 14:19 utc | 13

Via Mr. Safardi: A really quite beautiful new website explaining Iran's nuclear program. He says he is only sorry it is 10 years too late.


Posted by: guest77 | Nov 10 2013 14:30 utc | 14

"Cyrus Safdari thinks that this was a setup and that the U.S. never intended a deal. That France only rode interference on the behalf of the U.S...."

That rings true to me. But with the caveat that Washington is divided. As b points out in his primary post:
without a deal "..the U.S. will be militarily and financially incapable of executing its plans for a pivot to Asia."

It is another occasion on which America's "heart" has prevailed over its, rarely employed, "head." France's antics merely enabled the US to place the blame for this folly elsewhere.

France, of course, like the UK, is only included in these conferences in order that the US can play three or more roles at once, if necessary. France's motives too are so banal it is almost embarrassing to mention them- like a jackal it cleans up on an arms to deal.

brian's post @12 reminds us that, just as the US has several delegations at International Conferences, so too does it have several Executive branches at play, including the Tel Aviv office and the CIA/Special Forces Death Squad Central. Both do as they please and will do until the money runs out.

Back in 2003 I saw the attack on Iraq as a clear indication that the Empire was crumbling. This irrational move on Iran, more or less pushing Iran into alliance with China and Russia and transforming the strategic situation, is similarly significant.

Condolences, though, to the many Iranians who will be victimised by sanctions cutting off their medicines and other vital supplies. But, as Pirouz-2 pointed out on another thread, the moral is clear: nations should never allow themselves to fall into dependence on others for food, fuel or drugs. As the pioneering Trade Unionist, Joseph Arch, left home for his first job on a farm, his mother told him never to let another man do for him anything that he could do for himself. Sage advice for nations as well.

Posted by: bevin | Nov 10 2013 14:32 utc | 15

Absence of the Russian delegation was indicative, that so-called negotiations which is nothing short tactics that the Western camp is trying to twist the Iranian's arm, won't succeed.

No sane country would agree on what the White man proposed (unfroze $50B of Iranian assets) to Iran. Carrot and Stick isn't favorite game of Iranians, the chess is.

The atmosphere of high expectations (and west desperations) is created as a method of pressure at Iran's delegation. Iranian answer on this move is: "opening new manufacturing faciliy of surface-to-air missile Sayyad-2".

Everything is according to script, yesterday it was the KSA, today's role of useful idiots is France. They are handsomely rewarded what's b outlined in its text.

"The Americans, the EU and the Iranians have been working intensively together for months on this proposal, and this is nothing more than an attempt by (French Foreign Minister Laurent) Fabius to insert himself into relevance late in the negotiations."

Posted by: neretva'43 | Nov 10 2013 14:49 utc | 16

"We are not blind, and I don't think we're stupid. I think we have a pretty strong sense of how to measure whether or not we are acting in the interests of our country and of the globe," Kerry said on NBC's "Meet the Press."

"Nobody has talked about getting rid of the current architecture of sanctions. The pressure will remain," he said."

Posted by: neretva'43 | Nov 10 2013 15:05 utc | 17

One SHOULD NOT be surprised by the actions of France . There is BHL (friend of Fabius and DSK) behind this. Make one wonders that France is becoming like the US, they need that Zionist vote. In this case BHL is keeping a low profile after he got a good slap in the face ( figuratively) wrt Libya - he was not welcomed for a visit there last yr when France (Fabius) went to Tripoli. The artsy crowd has the Quartier Latin but the Zionists are up and up in the 16 arr and Neuilly sur Seine together with the wealthy Arabs ( whether they are Syrians like Mme O, the Saudis or Qataris) who couldn't careless about their brethren in the ME.

Posted by: Yul | November 10, 2013 at 10:30 AM

Posted by: Yul | Nov 10 2013 15:35 utc | 18

Zbigniew Brzezinski former National Security adviser in its book described France as a "third rate country", he is speaking in military and geopolitical terms. France has no capability even to intervene in Sahel without support of EU and US. Assuming that this is prevalent attitude in all U.S. administrations, and which in effect is reality in international relationships, I cannot but conclude that France's role is only to pick the crumbs from the table. Recent spying affair is another indication who in the pack is having leading role.

When Dr. Rohani and we began negotiations in those years, the conditions were different. Iran’s dossier was not in the Security Council and the other parties were the Europeans. There were advantages and disadvantages in this strategy. The advantage was that we were negotiating with a smaller group but the disadvantage was that the shadow of the US was always present in the room. When we convened the Paris negotiations in March 23, 2005, I remember that, during the 7 hours that I was negotiating with the three countries, John Bolton, who was then the Deputy Secretary of State and in charge of disarmament in the cabinet, called the French party seven times to make sure that no agreement was reached. Of course, it must be pointed out that the other party has not benefited from these sanctions and the important point is that they understand that their approach and sending the nuclear dossier to the Security Council and imposing sanctions have all led to an increase in the number of centrifuges in Iran from 300 at that time to 18000 or 19000 centrifuges now. It cannot be denied that sanctions have affected people’s lives. If the US’ objective was to exert pressure on the Iranian people and instill hatred in them, they have achieved this goal well, but they have not gained any political objective from this approach. The fact is that in general today’s conditions are very different from the conditions of that time and no one can return these conditions to the past. One year after March 23, 2005 when we offered our proposal in Paris, all of the western countries expressed their regret in the political circles and wished that they had accepted that proposal. Right now there is an opportunity for them to accept the proposals on the table and prevent useless confrontation. In this agreement, both our interests and the interests of the other side have been considered.

Dr. Mohammad Javad Zarif, the Islamic Republic of Iran’s Foreign Minister, in Geneva

Posted by: neretva'43 | Nov 10 2013 15:45 utc | 19

Funny article about Obama's anti-spying tent:

American security officials demand that their bosses — not just the president, but members of Congress, diplomats, policy makers and military officers — take such precautions when traveling abroad because it is widely acknowledged that their hosts often have no qualms about snooping on their guests.

Hahhahahaa... Oh yes, other countries have no qualms about spying. Of course.

My god, could the NYTimes be anymore craven?

Posted by: guest77 | Nov 10 2013 16:13 utc | 20

Screw this whole thing.
There were never going to be actual negotiations really, just mere pretending by the four Israeli Governments included in this process...
They've managed to dupe the Russians Chinese, and the Iranians.
Sad. Very pessimistic for the rest of the world population.

Posted by: C'estMoi | Nov 10 2013 16:15 utc | 21

Patrick Cockburn and down to earth article:

Posted by: neretva'43 | Nov 10 2013 16:18 utc | 22

Man do I feel stupid for cheering on Hollande's election. At the time I thought anything would be better than Sarkozy and this right wing Islamophobic policies. Instead we have this phoney left winger pretending to be a socialist proving to be even more of a warmonger than Sarkozy ever was.

Hollande is even more eager to attack Syria than the British conservatives or the Americans. Ain't that a turn for the books... France doing more warmongering than America or Britain, a year ago I wouldn't have believed it. Now going ahead and blocking the Iran peace deal against US-UK-German-Russian-Chinese wishes? Incredible.

Then of course there is the NSA scandel, 70 million French calls intercepted per month, and not a shred of outrage from Hollande. It appears he is willing to oppose the US on making peace with Iran, but not on stopping the mass surveilence of his own people. Lets not even mention him attacking Mali.

Hard to believe it is possible to do so much damage within one year.

Posted by: Colm O' Toole | Nov 10 2013 16:23 utc | 23

Just to expand on Cyrus Safdari's Iran comments

" like I'm getting tired of saying over and over again -- the West has no intention of resolving this standoff. This is not, and never was, about Iran's nuclear program. Iran could make all the nuclear compromise offers it wants, it will never work. It is about toppling the regime there and returning Iran into a subservient state that can, at best, only hope to get whatever technological scraps the French and Americans deem fit to toss to Iran. "

IMHO, sure seems to be the US modus operandi in past adventures in Middle Eastern countries

Posted by: curious | Nov 10 2013 16:59 utc | 24

Well, the whores in Congress would lose thier best trick if they went along with diplomatic "solution" to the non-existent "threat" posed by Iran.

If they ain't sucking Israeli dick, they ain't allowed to work the DC brothel.

Besides, when Israel finally drags us into military conflict with Iran, which it will...false flag...

Sanctions....punishing the Persian population...just like we did to the Iraqis...over lies about a "threat" that does not in fact exist.

France's alleged intransigence is irrelevent. After all, the sluts in DC aren't servicing Obama anyway. Their trick is the little racist sandpit known as "Israel".

Do any of you really believe a "deal" with Iran would fly?? How are those much hyped "peace talks", that these lying sacks of shit concocted, going? Kerry is a blustering fraud, as these "diplomatic" efforts at a deal with Iran are pure unadulterated bullshit. There ain't gonna be no "deal" with Iran.

Damn, I wish Iran had a nuke arsenal on a par with Israel's. Maybe then we'd see a bit of peace in that region of the world.

Posted by: PissedOffAmerican | Nov 10 2013 18:23 utc | 25

@25 There's no doubt you are right.

I keep thinking that ...somehow... Obama is attempting to dial back the rhetoric, take us off the road that leads to another Iraq scenario (x3) but then I take a look at this "team" of moral gnats he has assembled and I realize... nah, we're screwed. And we deserve whatever is coming.

Posted by: guest77 | Nov 10 2013 18:49 utc | 26

When France maintained its hard-line attitude to attack Syria and was sorta left in the desert lonely-oh, as the US made an abrupt switcheroo, it was assumed that this was an ex. of France poodling up to the US and sorta failing in intel, contacts, having lost the plot, etc.

Big Diplo Fail for France, it was judged. Date: end August 2013, 10 days after the Ghouta Chem attacks on Aug 21 in Syria, crossing O’s red line, which was an invite to escalation, even if possibly uncalculated.

Haaretz: (many other news same, incl. in French, like Nouvel Obs, more harrowing detail, 1.)

French fighter jets were ready to take-off for an attack in Syria on August 31, but were called off only hours away from launch time, a French weekly magazine has revealed ..

France's president, .., called off the attack after a call with U.S. President O.., who decided that same day he would seek approval from Congress before carrying out a military response over chemical weapons use in Syria.

Whether France is running sub rosa interference for the US is a tough call...but mostly NO, F is just hapless..

1. in French, many details.

Kerry called Fabius on 30 Aug saying it’s on, Kerry called several times. On the same day, Hollande and O talked on the phone at length. O was more prudent than Kerry, and said the strikes (> Syria) were decided on, but when exactly they would take place, was up in the air (sic), his -O’s- decision was nevertheless firm. Hollande was not aware, or not informed, that O was under pressure at home to hold off. When O glancingly mentioned he “might” need approval of Congress, Hollande understands that his plans are scotched. Hollande then has to go and cancel everything at a dead of night meet with the military.. According to this article.

Posted by: Noirette | Nov 10 2013 19:00 utc | 27

The US, Britain, France always ask how high when Israel tells them to jump. No surprise here at all. Now the phony market will climb even higher.

Posted by: Cynthia | Nov 10 2013 19:17 utc | 28

Colm O' Toole @23,

Keep in mind that the pipeline the Saudis want to go through Syria is also a Qatari pipeline. And the Qataris have made massive investments in France, up to the point that the Qatari citizen residing in France are allowed to not pay the wealth tax that applies to any other resident, be they French or foreign citizen residing in France (see link below). Remember that the French were strong supporters of a military operation in Syria.

So a Saudi/Qatari/French alliance just gets confirmed every passing day...

Posted by: Cynthia | Nov 10 2013 19:29 utc | 29

"French fighter jets were ready to take-off for an attack in Syria on August 31, but were called off only hours away from launch time, a French weekly magazine has revealed ..

France's president, .., called off the attack after a call with U.S. President O.., who decided that same day he would seek approval from Congress before carrying out a military response over chemical weapons use in Syria."

This a funny. I remember exactly the same discourse when war started in Bosnia, and than Nazi/Socialist French President had landed in Sarajevo.çois-mitterrand-in-sarajavo

Never understood why he was in Sarajevo along with Bernard Kouchner. But a narrative is striking. Everybody was talking about intervention on the way like "F-16s are taking off from Aviano" but "Mitterrand's visit had prevented it".

Posted by: neretva'43 | Nov 10 2013 19:35 utc | 30

"moral gnats"

Bwahahahaha! Can I use that from time to time?

Of course there will be no deal but I must admit they are really putting on a good show this time. I'm sure there are us policy makers who'd love to cut a square deal with Iran but no one's paying attention to them. Their antics do make the show more plausible, though, so they're permitted on the stage.

Posted by: Lysander | Nov 10 2013 20:25 utc | 31

Posted by: Colm O' Toole | Nov 10, 2013 11:23:49 AM | 23

Gore Vidals: One party, two right wings' applies to more than US politics

Posted by: brian | Nov 10 2013 20:33 utc | 32

Posted by: Colm O' Toole | Nov 10, 2013 11:23:49 AM | 23

'representative democracy' attracks some dodgy candidates who have mastered the art of appearing attractive/appealing

Posted by: brian | Nov 10 2013 20:35 utc | 33

We should see the context.

For a starter, the vage thoughts and timid steps toward ending the war against Iran (yes, that is de facto a war) are not based on obama being a reasonable and nice man but on simple, solide factors: The western system is increasingly failing and going down, while Russia is ever more powerful and the Russia-China (and, extended, BRICS) axis is way more durable and stable than the zio-fags had thought.

Sure, it's painful for Iran to continue that cruel game for another while. But Iran, Russia, and China have already won a very major strategic victory. Iran took Achmadinedschad, the symbol for the "evil Iran", out of the game and established a internationally credible and positive campagne to settle all issues.

Just look at the current situation. israel is the only country strictly opposed; but then, who cares. Every Joe and Jane knows that israel is an aggressive, criminal pseudo-state which disrespects any and all laws and agreements. And then there is hollande, the big loser, the failure who has to watch the ultra right nationalists in his country to overtake his own party, and his zio-minister fabius.

At the same time even the jewish zus-foreign sec. kohn/kerry is forced to clearly state that the israeli settlements are illegal (and by that, that israel is a serial criminal).

Looking at it one has to conclude that israel has tremendously lost while Iran has tremendously won in the past months.

Another very important factor is Russias solid engagement for and protection of Syria. Actually this might have well been the pivot point where it became clear the zusa is worthless as a protective power while Russia is the protective power to reckon with.

Remember Syria not striking back after being attacked yet again by israel? Why? Are they too weak?
Nope. You bet Putin told Assad to stand still yet a little longer. He knew that zusa couldn't afford to be blindly pro-israel any longer. He knew that zamerica always had a big snout when they thought they could easily attack everyone and then just go away. Now, however, fighting israels wars would quite certainly risk to become a matter of life and death for zusa themselves. zusa has understood that Walt and Mearsheim were correct; israel is a liability, and now even a very dangerous liability, and not a friend.

obama even has a simple route. All he needs to do is to make it clear that in the current situation zusa just *has* to take care of itself and to stay away from any wars unless zusa or their closest allies are unprovocedly attacked.
The day will come and it will come soon that Syria (with lots of Russias and Irans help) will strike back to defen themselves from a unprovoked israeli attack. And zusa will react hesitating - or go through the grinder themselves.

hollande and fabius are no problem. They are but meaningless speaking puppets for israel and representing a not any more grande nation. Quite certainly the Iranian negotiator thought "Allez y rire Mr. fabius - avant qu'on vous casse la geule"

If I were a zio-jew I'd try to avoid being close to lamp posts ...

Posted by: Mr. Pragma | Nov 10 2013 20:44 utc | 34

So let me get this straight...The most powerful country on the Earth takes orders from an apartheid state and another country that can best be described as medieval with lost of cash and sand (Saudi Arabia)??? Someone please tell me I'm wrong here..It just can't be right. Unless, of course, the US never intended to get a deal in the first place and had to allow France to play the bad cop.

Either which way, Ruhani will have to smell the coffee and get out of his "peace and love" fantasies. One can never negotiate with a madman..Never!!!

Posted by: Zico | Nov 10 2013 20:47 utc | 35

I am thinking of the many ways Iran could make life very difficult for the french abroad if the official iranians perception is that the frenchies went alone into boycotting this pre-agreement that would have meant a real detente in the region:in Mali France could see many disasters in the future because Tehran has different channels in Africa that could irks them.In Lebanon where the french still dream of having a say Tehran could ask Hezbollah for a little help to make them wake up to the reality that they are nothing more than an ex big power who became a third rate nation at least economically and militarily.In Syria they could ask Bashar to halt all the underground discussions going on between the secret services about alQaeda and affiliates or the release of french special forces that have been caught there(if they haven't already released them).Plus Tehran holds a major asset :the french chamber of commerce has resumed its presence in Tehran being very afraid of the business american delegations reopening their offices there.
Tehran could also ask the lebanese to not include Total in the gas negotiation...lots of other sorry disturbances come to mind....
I am just listening on Almanar to an assesment from Tehran where it says the iranians perception is that what happened in Geneva was a bad cop/good cop action.
The tragicomical part is that the west has no more the means of behaving as the rogue criminal it proved to be this last half century.Look at the american military,the navy new scandal,the Pentagon financial difficulties..with what the french want to frighten the world?with the only carrier left,the DEGaulle that after the lybia adventure was sent for 6 months for repair?
some other points:
how Zusa envisages to disengage from Afghanistan without Tehran help?
how do they think they can pivot to Asia as they are haplessly bogged down in the Middle East were they are left with two very angry and stupid allies,the saudis and the zionists,without Tehran 's help lest they are ready to loose it all?
Zusa is not anymore one voice(if it ever was)and this Geneva fiasco might show that what one american hand works studiously to achieve the other is bent to destroy in alliance with foreign enraged neocons like Saudis,"israel",Fabius...
no need to be afraid of a strike against Tehran.It is militarily very capable of defending itself and inflict pain to its enemies(it would achieve the complete destruction of the zionist abomination.Plus it own allies China and Russia wouldn't allow it.

Posted by: Nobody |

Posted by: Nobody | Nov 10 2013 21:02 utc | 36

@31 lol. glad yo liked it. Use it as you please, with the warning that I'm sure I stole it from somewhere.


I don't think it is that the US "takes orders" but more that it has for decades played a very tangled double game that is finally catching up with it.

In the course of having presented itself as the "non-empire empire" (and in the course of that allowing its puppet states to become quite powerful through allowing them to do, with much active US training, cash, and know-how, an incredible amount of the USAs dirty work) it has created a handful of relatively small but extremely dangerous little monsters that it now has to answer to when trying to do a 180.

Having pushed the Saudis and the Israelis to be able to punch far above their weight and allowed them - in mind and in practice - to be "partners" in all of these deadly games, is it any surprise that they come out with all sorts of threats when the US wants - no, must - put an end to all the "fun"?

As George Galloway often says, it seems that these clowns didn't read "Frankenstein" all the way through to the end.

Posted by: guest77 | Nov 10 2013 21:12 utc | 37


I also find it irritating that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia -- a country that does nothing but pump crude out of the ground, and that is openly run by a fascist royal family, and whose citizens were the large majority of the alleged 9/11 hijackers -- has such a loud voice in US foreign policy, not to mention domestic monetary and energy policy. The US is still back peddling after the American people stood up and managed to avoid the invasion of Syria, which we have now learned was a Saudi idea from the get-go.

Saudi Arabia is only second to Israel when it comes to wagging the US dog and taking a dump on the American people.

Posted by: Cynthia | Nov 10 2013 21:15 utc | 38

The US needs an enemy in the Middle East and Iran is it - perfectly. It has the Shia element, it is big, and the media loves a villain with a turban and beard. You can't sell a better enemy to Americans than Iran. Moreover, how else would the US military industrial complex sell the Gulf Goat Molesters billions of dollars worth of worthless weapons if there wasn't such an enemy. Hell no, of course not Israel that is the threat and the reason of instability in the Middle East. It must be Iran.

Besides, if Iran was a friend to the US, the hit TV show Homeland would have to change its genre to pure comedy.

Posted by: MikeA | Nov 10 2013 21:25 utc | 39

Hollande's France has become like a vulture, hoping to pick up a bit of carrion, hoping to get its beak in, after the US and Israel arrange for the kill. While this may be disgusting (and distracting) it is important to realize that there is no US "pivot to Asia" (where the ultimate bloody monkeyshines are foreseen), wherein the Empire moves toward its most daunting acts of aggression ever. We are seeing theater, kabuki; and nothing less is going on, under the sordid pretense of negotiations. Neither the US nor Israel has any use for regional powers that will never play ball in the Wally World of the Western Bankers. And the usual suspects are hoping to goad the deeply conservative elements in Iran, and to cause Rouhani's power to be undermined there.

Kerry's diplomatic posture is disingenuous, and the French are playing their role, with the added promise of a fistful of dollars in arms procurement from the amenable Bandar, and of course, the gratitude of the Saudi King. Remember that the strategic goal of a near-bankrupt, flailing Empire, is always being kept in focus.

I agree with what a friend of mine writes: "Kerry's lamentations are all posturing and kabuki theater, designed to beautify U.S. intentions."

Posted by: Copeland | Nov 10 2013 21:35 utc | 40

"Remember that the strategic goal of a near-bankrupt,flailing Empire..." More like a bug than a feature.

Posted by: ruralito | Nov 10 2013 22:05 utc | 41

Thoroughly agree, Mike A. This whole episode has also exposed how foreign interests -- most of whom are connected closely to banking interests and of course the MIC -- dictate US foreign policy. I say, let these guys work it out themselves. It's not our fight, it's not our problem. Iran is not going to nuke the US, and it is not even going to nuke Israel. Nuclear weapons are a deterrent to invasion, not an offensive weapon (unless you desire your country to be reduced to radioactive rubble). Iran's threat is its desire to use non-dollar currency for oil, which threatens the banking cartel including the Fed. But try telling that to your average American who has forgotten that the US is the only country on Earth that actually used nuclear weapons offensively back before anyone else had them.

Posted by: Cynthia | Nov 10 2013 22:58 utc | 42

@10 The idea that Obama was working *with* France to play some "Oh My God! They've Gone Rogue!" good-cop/bad-cop routine is going too far into cloud-coo-coo land.

Think about it...
Think about it...

It requires that Obama comes to the conclusion that the right call is for him to give the impression that he is willing to surrendered US foreign policy to a cheese-eating surrender-monkey.

Really? That would really seem like A Good Idea to any US Administration?

The rules of the game are clear: The USA decides, and the role of the Europeans are to nod their head in unison.

Occasionally (very occasionally, see Iraq 2003) someone like France is allowed to stand up and say "We Disagree!", at which point Uncle Sam duly notes that dissent in the minutes and then promptly dismisses that protest from its mind.

But allow France to stand up and say "No! We Forbid It!"?
When did letting France say that ever become a smart move?

I mean, get real:
Flunky: I have an idea!
President: Let's hear it.
Flunky: We string the Iranians along, see.
President: I'm listening.
Flunky: We convince them that a deal is just within reach.
President: Go on, I'm still with you.
Flunky: And then, BAMMO!
President: What? What? Tell me! Tell me!
Flunky: We get a Frenchman to slap the pen right outta' Kerry's hand!
President: .... [sound of crickets chirping] .....

Posted by: Johnboy | Nov 11 2013 0:19 utc | 43

France being forced to act so craven and so pathetic is their payment for going along with the US on all these misadventures like the terrorist campaign on Syria and the Iran sanctions.

So fucking pathetic. It's like seeing a whole country slink out of a whorehouse with a hangover and an empty wallet, scratching at some new rash it just got.

Hollande. Douchebag of the month, for sure.

Posted by: guest77 | Nov 11 2013 0:55 utc | 44

As far as Iran's many opponents are concerned this latest development is the worst possible outcome imaginable.

It is now impossible for the P5+1 to claim that it is talking as one.
It is now impossible to claim that Iran is the recalcitrant party in these negotiations.

Those are two catastrophic results for anyone interested in maintaining the existing sanctions on Iran, and even more so for anyone seeking to use those sanctions to extort concessions from Iran.

The sanctions-regime is held in place by the unity of the P5+1. So long as that presents a rock-solid bloc to the rest of the world then nobody - but nobody - is willing to break ranks and trade directly with Tehran.

But once that unity within the P5+1 breaks down - as it most surely is - then its authority goes out the window, and with it the ability to keep everyone else toing the party line.

Q: Why?
A: Because if the P5+1 fractures then there is *no* party line any more.

The sanctions will crumble, and the P5+1 will extract nothing from Iran in return.
After all, why should they, when they can just sit back and watch the circus unfold in front of them?

This is a bad, bad, bad move by the French, and so it is no surprise that the force behind it is the Clown Car of The Middle East:
"It has emerged that after a call from Barack Obama on Friday evening asking him not to oppose the planned Geneva deal, Netanyahu did the opposite. He called British prime minister, David Cameron, Russian president Vladimir Putin, German chancellor Angela Merkel and French president François Hollande, asking them to block it."

Posted by: Johnboy | Nov 11 2013 1:05 utc | 45

To continue the vulture imagery, France got a place at the head of the flock, to feast on the decomposing carcass of Libya. And they will pick up an odd scrap here and there as AFRICOM tenderizes that continent for them. Now that Gadaffi is out of the way. The belly is open and the gut is to be pulled out like a long string. No one should be surprised that Hollande has no remaining dignity on behalf of himself or his country. The same kind of dismemberment is lined up for Iran, as was in the works for Syria. An insolvent France needs more booty; and that is usually where a vulture starts.

And as for US Presidents, King Vulture Obama is acting as one would expect. "This man has no moral center", as a delegation of community activists, a group black women concluded, after visiting with him in the White House soon after he was first elected. Expect nothing but the grossest realpolitik, compulsive lying, deception, disinformation, mendacity. He has quite a track record now.

Posted by: Copeland | Nov 11 2013 1:33 utc | 46

Oh yeah, they are really looking for an honest deal.

Unidentified assailants shot dead Iran's deputy minister for industry and mining, Safdar Rahmat Abadi, in Tehran on Sunday night, media reports said.

The official IRNA news agency reported that Rahmat Abadi, the deputy minister of industry, mines and commerce in charge of parliamentary affairs, had been fatally shot in the head and chest as he was driving in the east of the capital.

Add to that, Haaretz is now reporting that world powers demand that work cease on Arak. So the French position is now everyone's.

Still, it does make Iran look more and more like the adult in the room. The p5+1 includes Russia and China. They need to openly break with the others and talk up Iran's offer and criticize the others for moving the goal posts.

Posted by: Lysander | Nov 11 2013 1:44 utc | 47

@46 "Add to that, Haaretz is now reporting that world powers demand that work cease on Arak. So the French position is now everyone's."

Well, to be fair, Haaretz is saying that Shearman is saying to the Israelis that "world powers demand that work cease on Arak", which is just about a dictionary-definition example of Chinese Whispers.

Personally, I'd treat such a scoop with considerable scepticism.

Posted by: Johnboy | Nov 11 2013 2:55 utc | 48

It's a very bad deal for Iran and Iran should walk away from this trap.

Posted by: LOYAL | Nov 11 2013 3:21 utc | 49


Don't you trust the SL?? What happened to the absolute submission to the custody of the jurisprudent (zowb shodegi dar velayat)? SL says:

"No one should consider our negotiators as compromisers,
They [the Iranian negotiators] have a difficult mission and no one must weaken an official who is busy with work"

Since we have to be in absolute submission to SL, and since the Iranian negotiation team has the trust of our leader, I'd say we are very safe... Don't you agree?

Posted by: Pirouz_2 | Nov 11 2013 4:16 utc | 50

@ LOYAL/Pirouz, the SL knows very well that the US/EU will not end sanctions, so there is no harm in being willing to compromise and letting the western powers take the blame for failure. It is also important for the *entire* Iranian public to understand that it is not Iran's 'hardliners' who are the obstacle to sanctions relief. When Rouhani and Zarif come to that conclusion as well (if they haven't already,) they will have to move to the right of Ahmadinejad to survive politically inside Iran. No one votes for deal makers who can't make a deal.

Johnboy, I guess it could be, but it isn't a hopeful sign when the lead negotiator is telling the Israelis everything and the Israelis go ahead and leak it to the press.

Posted by: Lysander | Nov 11 2013 4:29 utc | 51


I'll beg to differ. Iran did EVERY THING it could for the deal to go through as it is! If it has not gone through (and still it is too soon to tell with certainty, let the sanctions bite some more), it is NOT because Iranians thought that the deal was "bad". SL has openly said so (see my direct quotation in the previous comment). If it has not gone through it was only because the West is too stupid! Had they accepted it (and they came damn close to doing so) it would have gone through very smoothly!
As for not being able to survive politically after a bad deal, I again disagree. We have a clear example of politically surviving an ABSOLUTELY disastrous deal in Iran: 1988 and the humiliating capitulation to US/Saddam in the end of Iran-Iraq war. IR leadership survived very well, the only souls who did not survive were some 5-7000 political prisoners who had been already tried and sentenced and were serving their sentences; those poor souls got executed in the summer of 1988!!

Posted by: Pirouz_2 | Nov 11 2013 4:40 utc | 52

Actually, it's not France that pushes the US around; it's Canada. So it's time for a Blame Canada thread.

Posted by: Ozawa | Nov 11 2013 4:41 utc | 53

@50 "Johnboy, I guess it could be, but it isn't a hopeful sign when the lead negotiator is telling the Israelis everything and the Israelis go ahead and leak it to the press."

Well, yeah, but that's the thing about Chinese Whispers: what is said at the end rarely corresponds to what was said at the beginning.

For all that you and I know the Israelis were shouting that construction at Arak had to be halted, and all Sherman did was make conciliatory sounds back at them. At which point the Israelis rushed to put *their* words into *her* mouth.

Posted by: Johnboy | Nov 11 2013 4:45 utc | 54

Interesting that there hasn't been a single State Department press briefing since last Tuesday.

Maybe they can't find any spokesmodel foolish enough to volunteer to "explain" how and why US foreign policy can be held hostage to the whims of guys called "Laurent Fabius" and "François Hollande".

A tough sell, that one. Very tough indeed.

Posted by: Johnboy | Nov 11 2013 4:50 utc | 55

By the way my friend you say:

"When Rouhani and Zarif come to that conclusion as well (if they haven't already,) they will have to move to the right of Ahmadinejad "

It should be actually "to the 'left' of Ahmadinejad".

Posted by: Pirouz_2 | Nov 11 2013 5:55 utc | 56

Interesting, the NY Times has already started the process of rewriting history.

The spin is that the failure to clinch the deal is all down to the refusal of the Iranians to agree to sign.

Q: Says who?
A: Well, principally, so says "Herb Keinon of The Jerusalem Post", "Isabel Kershner contributed reporting from Jerusalem", and "Jodi Rudoren, Jerusalem bureau chief"

I don't know why the rag keeps referring to itself as the New York Times when, apparently, it is nothing but a subcontractor for Israeli propaganda.

It should just call itself The Jerusalem Post, US Edition.

Posted by: Johnboy | Nov 11 2013 6:23 utc | 57

An interesting article from Laura Rozen, who was actually at Geneva when the French Fun and Games(tm) erupted:

So, basically, the reporters who were **in** Geneva **as** the events were unfolding had no doubts that the failure was attributable to the French foreign minister, and this was acknowledged by the diplomats who had worked so hard only to see their efforts torpedoed.

Meanwhile, in the aftermath of that failed meeting the reporters who are in Jerusalem are reporting that the American negotiator is telling her Israeli counterparts that Iran was to blame for the failure to reach an agreement.

Who to believe?

Do I believe the reporters who were THERE, and who saw what was going on?
Do I believe the reporters in Israel who are being told by the Israelis what they had just been told by the Americans?

Hmmmmm, tough call, that one....

Posted by: Johnboy | Nov 11 2013 7:08 utc | 58

Pirouz, I did not say the SL does not *want* a deal, only that he knows there wont be one. And that he understands the reasons why. He also understands how important it is to prove that Iran is not the unreasonable party here. He is showing it to the world, and more importantly he is showing it to the Iranian public. They are suffering under sanctions and they need to know, including the greens, that it is not the fault of their government.

IMHO, this is being accomplished.

Posted by: Lysander | Nov 11 2013 7:23 utc | 59

Unless I've missed it, I've seen no mention here of the recent announcement made by the Jordanians that a $10 billion contract to construct a nuclear power plant north of Amman would be awarded to two Russian companies,rather than the French, with whom they had also entered into negotiations last year.

So much for the perception that Russia's position on Syria had done irreparable damage to its reputation in the middle-east. And what about new talks over an arms deal between Russia and Egypt? Or the recent delivery of the first 4 of 44 military aircraft in total that Russia will deliver to Iraq before the year end.

I thought France was on the right side of history? This wasn't supposed to happen. Where is their reward for supporting head-chopping, man eaters in Syria? Instead, they are being cast adrift from the region.

But their shenanigans at the nuclear talks are an attempt to remain relevant and exert themself on a significant regional issue as a key player.

Posted by: Pat Bateman | Nov 11 2013 9:38 utc | 60

So Kerry speaking from Abu-Dabi confirms the history rewriting that Iran is to blame for the failure to reach an agreement ( report). It didn't take long. As Lysander suggests, I doubt many in the international community will believe it.

Posted by: Philippe | Nov 11 2013 9:43 utc | 61


This was immediately before Boeing retrofitted ILs fighter-bombers with nuclear launch rails.
Now you could claim that GBU-28s are non-nuclear, but IL has the capability to make them so.
They certainly wouldn't have paid Boeing for nuke retrofits if this wasn't going to happen.

Unfortunately the Boeing retrofit has been 404'd, and why revisionistas love the internet.
Just like that Abu Ghraib video tape that spontaneously burst into flames in the WH Annex.

It never happened.

Posted by: PeeDee | Nov 11 2013 10:14 utc | 62


You never finished stating what it is that the US decides?

McCain-Graham seem to have decided the correct optics is that a 'recalcitrant Iran spiked the deal' would play well in Congress for this week's Defense ReAuthorization, certainly better than Hagel's admission that another $ ONE TRILLION has gone AWOL at the Pentagon.
Now who gave them that idea? Who is the ME broker for US arms deals? Not Adnan Khashoggi!

Once Syria is defanged, the US-AQ 'opposition' now being heavily armed will seize power, the Syrian military bases will be overrun, agents provacateur (like the Brits in Iraq) will blow the radars and air defense system, then it 'On to Tehran' for US-Israel-Saudi.
In the meantime, no more Sequestration for Defense (sic), 'structural austerity' for US.

Everything is as it should be.

Posted by: PeeDee | Nov 11 2013 10:37 utc | 63

Don't forget about the S&P downgrade of France announced on Friday. Well timed pressure? or "coincidental"?

Posted by: mrd | Nov 11 2013 12:38 utc | 64

To: Pirouz_2
*- Events like these negotiations is further proof that for country like Iran under continuous pressures and attaches by imperialist and their lackeys Israeli , Saudi Arabia SL & VF is great Idea .
*- Iran was not humiliated during imposed War. Saddam in the end gave up everything including changing The 1975 Algiers Accord.
He was hanged and last word he heard was chants of pro Iranian forces of Moghtada (now in Iran).
Iran now has more influence and power in Iraq than any other time in recent history.
Sometimes it takes little time to know who won the war.

No ,I don’t trust any political, religious leader but I trust SL much more than likes of reformers, liberals, anarchists.

Posted by: LOYAL | Nov 11 2013 13:57 utc | 65


"I did not say the SL does not *want* a deal, only that he knows there wont be one."

Ok, so if he "wants" a deal then that deal which he found acceptable was what was on the table being negotiated, and it was rejected by France, NOT by Iran. Then we are back at what LOYAL and I were arguing. If the deal was acceptable to the leader, shouldn't it be acceptable to us without any further objection or even hint of criticism? After all we are in absolute submission to his custody, are we not? His word is the final word which should not be argued any further ((فصل‌الخطاب, is it not? Then why doubt at all that this deal or any other deal accepted by our negotiating team is bad? We should be in absolute obedience to our leader and never doubt his judgement.

"He is showing it to the world, and more importantly he is showing it to the Iranian public. They are suffering under sanctions and they need to know, including the greens, that it is not the fault of their government."

Yes I agree with you on that he is doing everything to make this deal go through and it is the West which does not allow it to go through (which sort of makes my first point). So yes, no one can say it is Iran's intransingence which stops a "deal". I doubt that the greens will ever get the point though.


"Iran was not humiliated during imposed War. Saddam in the end gave up everything including changing The 1975 Algiers Accord."

Mr. Khomeini begs to differ, he considered Iran's capitulation to Saddam as a "cup of poison that he [Mr. Khomeini] had to drink". It was NOT Iran which forced Saddam to accept the Algiers Accord, it was US forces which made him. Had he not been stupid enough to attack Kuwait and bring himself into a confrontation with US, he would not have been forced to accept Algiers Accord.
At the end of war, when we accepted the cease-fire, Iraq was holding Iranian national territory, so we accepted a cease-fire as a nation whose territory was under occupation (similar to the situation between Syria and Israel today). So don't try to present it in any other way, it was a very humiliating defeat. If in the end we got away without losing territory it was not due to our wisdom and strength, it was due to Saddam's stupid attack on Kuwait and the strength of the US armed forces.

"No ,I don’t trust any political, religious leader but I trust SL much more than likes of reformers, liberals, anarchists."

Well if you trust SL then you should not question his judgement, correct? He trusts our negotiating team led by our "moderate" Zarif. So don't doubt the deal that Zarif and our negotiating team are trying to push through or any deal that they would accept. If the leader trusts them then that means that the deal is flawless. You should not complain.

Posted by: Pirouz_2 | Nov 11 2013 15:58 utc | 66

this 'WAS' schedualed for a senate vote tomorrow, Nov. 12

The threat of US sanctions has frightened off most international investors. - See more at:

Pakistan is committed to building a multi-billion-dollar gas pipeline from neighboring Iran, but the threat of international sanctions makes the task difficult, the South Asian nation's petroleum minister said on Friday.

this is their fear...

France playing bad cop is part of the play, but the ease at which they were influenced into the role is the fact Hollande is finished and he knows it.

So, the banking/oil cartel throws a rope to Hollande for future safe haven as he will need it and in return he throws a wrench into the Iran dealings. Just as Syria is about pipelines west of Iran, this thing with sanctions is about pipelines east of Iran. France delays the deal with Iran so a strong threat of sanctions can be put out there to frighten investors away from Iran-Pak deals, then meatings with Iran take back up where they left off on the 20th.

Also include the nuke deals France will have with Saudi/Pak... you wonder what the push to control the uranium in African was about...? Saudi wants those reactors.

Posted by: too many wtf | Nov 11 2013 16:09 utc | 67

Cyrus Safdari thinks that this was a setup and that the U.S. never intended a deal. That France only rode interference on the behalf of the U.S.

I don't think that's true. The U.S. and Obama have invested too much political capital in these talks for that to be the case. b @ 10.

I agree. This is France having a hissy fit, much like the Saudis. (For imagined gains etc. etc.) Hang you hat on the superpower hook and betrayal is just around the corner. (Heh, gotta expect it and plan for it.) Note, Fabius has always been viciously anti-Iran, so this is perhaps another symptom of Hollande’s weakness, or mostly just a stab at being a ‘world player’.

Meanwhile the French ppl themselves are still worried about trivia... Amazing what the MSM can do, as the French are on the whole very pol-minded and aware. It is looking like a re-thread of the Ancien Régime, on multiple other indicators of course, and not new, started after Chirac (to just point to some arbitrary point), the French Revolution never reached any clear conclusion(s) and was aborted in various ways.

Posted by: Noirette | Nov 11 2013 16:38 utc | 68

Pirouz_2 @66

An alternative reading could be that Khameini knew that the US would not allow the agreement to go through- I find the idea that France sabotaged an agreement without US foreknowledge incredible- so he was happy to sign up to it.
Is not this what happened the last time agreement was close? Turkey and Brazil brokered a deal which Obama had publicly agreed would satisfy the US. And then the US turned it down as not going far enough.

Posted by: bevin | Nov 11 2013 17:09 utc | 69


So you mean that he agrees to a deal which he knows to be bad just because he is sure that the West won't agree to it anyway?

Posted by: Pirouz_2 | Nov 11 2013 17:17 utc | 70

If France blocked US pivot for real, we should see the US showing its discontent. And do we? NO!

Posted by: gregg | Nov 11 2013 18:25 utc | 71

Pirouz: Yes, that is what I mean. He didn't need to worry if it was bad because he knew that the enemy was only going through the motions of making a deal in order to placate public opinion, allies, or policy realists.
Now Iran looks to be the injured party and Israel/Saudi Arabia the aggressors. It sets up a fruitful propaganda campaign.

It is a possibility.

Posted by: bevin | Nov 11 2013 18:43 utc | 72

The problem was not France -- the problem was the demand for Iran abandoning enrichment. Kerry said so, and Rouhani seems to have confirmed that.

Posted by: Cyrus | Nov 11 2013 19:37 utc | 73


That would be a big (indeed too big a) gamble to play. It is not wise to just trust that the enemy will not agree to the terms of a bad deal, one of these days they may surprise you and accept it. And I don't think that that was the game that Mr. Khamenei played:

"... if the negotiations reach a conclusion, then all the better, but if they don't it will mean that the country must stand on its own feet,"

Of course we don't know exactly what went on behind the scene, but I am more inclined with you (and Cyrus) that France is not a big enough a player to change the course of negotiations on its own. If US really was adamant in making a deal, it could always lift the sanctions that itself has placed unilaterally, and then let's see what François "Bonaparte" Hollande will be able to do.

By the way, at this point I think we should emphasize what is considered a "bad deal". I would consider ANYTHING less than the letter of NPT as a "bad deal".
That means:
1) Iran's full right to enrich Uranium on its soil
2) No upper limit to the number or efficiency of the centrifuges
3) Iran will only promise not to go beyond the enrichment level of its needs. So if we are provided with the fuel for TRR, then we will stop enriching Uranium to 20%, but only because we don't need it. No rights will be given up as to the level of enrichment (be it 20% or 99%), if the civilian need arises to enrich for either a research reactor or for a reactor of a ocean-going ship to have HEU fuel, then we are either provided with the fuel or we have a right to produce our own fuel.
4) No dismantling of any reactor.
5) Very importantly, Fordo is here to stay. Fordo's only significance is the fact that it is indestructible by an air attack. Why should Iran dismantle a perfectly legitimate and fully monitored facility which is resistant to air raids? Are we to facilitate the air attack on our own facilities by the West/Israelies???
6) Monitoring and transparency is negotiable.

Posted by: Pirouz_2 | Nov 11 2013 20:32 utc | 74

I tend to agree with you. I was simply pointing out that this was a possibility, and that Loyal might be on the right track.

Regarding your definition of a "good" deal, again, I don't disagree that these are Iran's rights in the community of nations.
However for the sake of the people of Iran nuclear power stations ought to be dismantled there and everywhere else. Nuclear power is incredibly dangerous- it threatens humanity with extinction- very costly in financial terms and unnecessary, in that alternative energy sources abound.

In many ways nuclear weapons are less dangerous than nuclear power stations.

Posted by: bevin | Nov 11 2013 20:56 utc | 75


I am so damn glad that you say this:

"However for the sake of the people of Iran nuclear power stations ought to be dismantled there and everywhere else. Nuclear power is incredibly dangerous- it threatens humanity with extinction- very costly in financial terms and unnecessary, in that alternative energy sources abound. "

Unfortunately, not too many Iranians would say what you say. But I personally agree with you 100%.

However, this is a matter that Iranians should decide on their own, not to be dictated from outside.
It is your right to smoke cigarettes everyday. It is the right thing for you decide not to smoke. But no one has a right to dictate you that you should not smoke! So giving up smoking is very different from giving up the right to smoke.

By the way, I don't know much about nuclear reactors and the risks. I know that large reactors for power generation are risky. But are even small sized research reactors a risk? They have a very useful purpose of producing radio medicines as you know.

Posted by: Pirouz_2 | Nov 11 2013 21:12 utc | 76

#76 Excellent argument. I suspect that once the immediate threat of Western aggression has been removed and super-nationalistic passions die down the political life inside Iran should return to normal -- at that point the problems with disposing those spent reactor rods will be realized we might even see a local anti-nuke movement arise.

Posted by: ToivoS | Nov 11 2013 23:32 utc | 77

God forbid that I should be mistaken as an expert on nuclear matters.

Posted by: bevin | Nov 12 2013 0:35 utc | 78

To all the denizens of this shitsite: Fuck off and die, Nazi filth.

Posted by: Jimbo | Nov 12 2013 2:47 utc | 79


Dangerous indeed, especially when even more dangerous fools attempt to play games with their safety:

Rogue US-Israeli cyberwar weapon 'infected Russian nuclear plant'
Even the space station has been infected by malware, claims Kaspersky
By John Leyden, 11th November 2013

Stuxnet - the famous worm widely credited with crippling the Iranian nuclear weapons programme for several years - also infected the internal network of a Russian nuclear plant. Unspecified malware has even reached the International Space Station, according to the boss of Russian anti-virus firm Kaspersky Lab.

Eugene Kaspersky said he heard about the nuclear infection from a "friend of mine" at the unnamed nuclear plant. The unnamed staffer "sent a message their nuclear plant network which was disconnected from the internet ... was badly infected by Stuxnet," Kaspersky said, SC Magazine reports. The malware apparently got into the air-gapped network of the nuke plant on an infected USB stick.

Posted by: guest77 | Nov 12 2013 2:52 utc | 80

@79 Where the fuck do you morons come from?

Posted by: guest77 | Nov 12 2013 2:54 utc | 81


LOL... I don't think that Iran will face the problem of "spent reactor rods". Not for the Bushehr reactor anyway. Our Western friends, fearing that a reprocessing of the spent rods may lead to development of nuclear weapons, made sure that there was a clause in the agreement between Russia and Iran that the spent fuel rods would be returned to Russia.

Posted by: Pirouz_2 | Nov 12 2013 4:16 utc | 82

@79: Arrgh, arrgh, I'm dying. All my Iron Crosses with Oak Leaves are strangling me (dies)

Posted by: Rowan Berkeley | Nov 12 2013 12:59 utc | 83

Risks? Like building them in sismic areas?
A 5.5 earthquake in Eastern Japan a couple of days ago did not make to the healdines...

Posted by: Mina | Nov 12 2013 13:36 utc | 84

I couldnt post for stupid android2 reasons, but myantiwar had noted this article, mentioned here by Pepe
Poor old minibusfabius would have done that to save the world from an Israttack!! We must be grateful.

Posted by: Mina | Nov 12 2013 13:39 utc | 85

There is an interesting piece by the Leveretts at

It begins thus:
"Notwithstanding France’s simultaneously arrogant and craven grandstanding over Iran’s Arak heavy water reactor, the main reason for the failure of last week’s nuclear talks between the Islamic Republic and the P5+1 was the Obama administration’s imperious refusal to acknowledge Tehran’s right to enrich uranium under international safeguards. On this point, we want to highlight a recent post by Dan Joyner on Arms Control Law, titled, “Scope, Meaning and Juridical Implication of the NPT Article IV(1) Inalienable Right...."
They go on to show that the US is acting illegally in attempting to deny Iran's rights.

Among some excellent comments is this one:
1. Richard Steven Hack says:
November 13, 2013 at 4:06 am
"My analysis of the talks indicates to me that Obama is playing both sides against the middle. First, he is acting like “good cop” by seemingly pushing for a deal, even allowing Kerry (allegedly) to suggest the US would respect Iran’s sovereign rich to enrich. Second, he allows France to screw up the deal and then send Kerry out to denounce IRAN for screwing up the deal and issuing further threats. Third, he knows Netanyahu is going to attack Iran if Iran accepts ANY deal, thus letting Israel and France play “bad cop.”
This allows Obama to SEEM to be seeking a diplomatic solution to the "Iran crisis, with the full knowledge that no such deal will be reached, or if Iran fools everyone and DOES agree to a deal, that Israel will proceed to attack Iran, thus justifying the US becoming involved – leaving Obama and his undeserved Nobel Peace Prize untarnished. This is Obama’s MAIN GOAL with regard to Iran – get a war started while remaining BLAMELESS – as opposed to George W. Bush and Iraq. This requires him to push Iran sufficiently to get Iran to do something to justify the war – which is what he has been doing unflinchingly for years now with unilateral sanctions – or, failing that, allowing Israel to start the war.
"Anyone who thinks Obama is seriously trying to get a deal that WILL resolve the crisis is delusional. Even Pepe Escobar, in his latest piece at Asia Times, appears to have been duped into believing that the US elites want a deal now. This is not the case. There is no way Obama is going to cross the people who financed his entire political career. US politics does not work that way."

Like many comments the above is a bit too categorical. But the view stated, which we have seen in this thread and others, is certainly a reflection of the way that the most vociferous lobbyists in Washington are thinking. They would be "the people who financed his (Obama's) entire political career."

Posted by: bevin | Nov 13 2013 18:17 utc | 86

79,change your plan of troll attack.Calling proponents of peace,conciliation and diplomacy Nazis is ludicrous.

Posted by: dahoit | Nov 13 2013 21:06 utc | 87

Yeah,nuclear power in earthquake prone Iran is not logical,which I'm sure Iranians,who seem a very intelligent people,will decide for themselves at the proper time without anyone elses input.

Posted by: dahoit | Nov 13 2013 21:10 utc | 88

And the Iranians must have known the deck was marked by our lead negotiator,the Zionist Wendy Sherman.Talk about a tone deaf administration,or a compromised one.And Fabius,whose parents converted to Catholicism post? ww2 from Judaism,is that weird, huh?
That report of the slain Iranian minister said he was shot from within the car.Hmmmm.

Posted by: dahoit | Nov 13 2013 21:17 utc | 89

Pepe Escobar steals my "Pivot to Persia before Pivot to Asia" point - twice.

Me on Nov 10 above:

A temporary deal in Geneva would have been the first step for a larger nuclear deal which then could have brought Iran "in from the cold". This would have been the start of a "Pivot to Persia" after which the U.S. would have balanced its difficult relations with Israel and Saudi Arabia with friendly relations with Iran. Without such a realignment in the Middle East the U.S. will be militarily and financially incapable of executing its plans for a pivot to Asia.

Pepe at ATOL on Nov 12:
Why France is playing 'stupid' on Iran

It may take years - and it will. But Washington will inevitably find some sort of accommodation with Iran. US corporations want it. The energy-starved West wants it. Even the US hyperpower complex wants it - as it will give it way more leeway in Southwest Asia and beyond. The axis of fear and loathing of Israel, the House of Saud and France may play spoilers - but not for long. "Pivot to Asia"? Not before a pivot to Persia.

Pepe at Russia Today on Nov 15:
Pivotal moment: Why US wants deal with Iran

What should be happening first is a pivot by the US itself. Washington/Wall Street elites know that the future of the world economy is in the Asia-Pacific. The 21st is an Asian century. China is already busy integrating the whole of Eurasia – and Iran, as the key node of Southwest Asia, is a crucial actor.

History always comes up with mysterious ways of playing ‘if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em’. For Washington, there will be no real pivot to Asia before a pivot to Persia.

Posted by: b | Nov 16 2013 6:14 utc | 90

It certainly looks like Pepe has been visiting MOA. There are, of course, other major players in Asia whose roles in the future global equilibrium (or lack thereof) will be no less significant than that of Iran: Indonesia, India, Japan, Korea, and Pakistan come to mind. It is reasonable to expect that all of them will seek greater autonomy in pursuing their national goals while striving to remain independent of domination by either the U.S. or China. Meanwhile, the Mackinder-style crackpot realists (and their Chinese homologues) will undoubtedly continue their clandestine and overt power games in the pursuit of "security", commerical advantage, and hegemony, while ignoring the real possibilities for managing the inevitable conflicts of interest through existing international institutions. We will undoubtedly see many examples of "accommodation" like this one by India as well as provocations and confrontations between the emerging protagonists and their erstwhile overseers, like those currently in progress between the U.S. and Iran.

Posted by: Hannah K. O'Luthon | Nov 16 2013 8:45 utc | 91

Dear b,

"stole" ?
In the recent months I have found expressions you've used in almost every article by Pepe. Just enjoy the fame! I see it as a step towards "common ownership".

Posted by: Mina | Nov 16 2013 11:01 utc | 92

But the question is, are Bernhard and Pepe facing the true terror of the situation? For it is obviously not 'France', that artificially inflated little entity, but Israel, the focus of the worldwide Jewish megalith, the monster from planet ZOG which among other things holds the fate of all the world's currencies in its hands...

Posted by: Rowan Berkeley | Nov 16 2013 12:10 utc | 93

During the recent Russia vs UZA maritime standoff, Pepe seemed to be pilfering quite a bit from from MOA, both above and below the line.

Posted by: foff | Nov 16 2013 18:07 utc | 94

Unattributed verbatim knock-offs are generally regarded, in scribble-for-a-living circles, as plagiarism. Considering how thick and fast good ideas appear at MoA, Pepe's 'borrowing' is understandable. I like Pepe's perspectives and borrowing b's ideas probably helps to make him appear smarter than he is. On the other hand, using b for inspiration shows just how discerning he can be.
And imitation is the still sincerest form of flattery...
Imagine what we'd be saying about him if he was pinching ideas from intellectual pygmies like Jeffrey Goldberg, TLF, or Dershowitz.

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Nov 16 2013 22:42 utc | 95

It's not as if Pepe did not provide links to MoA at times: he did.

Posted by: Mina | Nov 17 2013 11:25 utc | 96

"Imagine what we'd be saying about him if he was pinching ideas from intellectual pygmies like Jeffrey Goldberg, TLF, or Dershowitz.Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Nov 16, 2013 5:42:53 PM | 95"

Unlikely we'd be talking about him all if he were doing that. Can't think of anyone else who pilfers from those assholees, and also gets discussed here

Posted by: foff | Nov 17 2013 13:19 utc | 97

The comments to this entry are closed.