Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
November 07, 2019

As 'Maximum Pressure' Fails To Move Iran Dirty Tricks Become More Likely

What's up with Jared Kushner's great Middle East peace plan? It seems to be as much alive as that famous parrot.

The other big Middle East project the Trump administration launched intended to achieve a new nuclear deal with Iran. That project isn't doing well either.

Secretary Pompeo @SecPompeo - 20:29 UTC · May 8, 2019
Today marks one year since President @realDonaldTrump made the historic decision to leave the Iran nuclear deal and embark on a bold new strategy to counter #Iran. Our maximum pressure campaign has already achieved historic success.
Secretary Pompeo @SecPompeo - 19:48 UTC · Jun 19, 2019
We’ve imposed the toughest sanctions ever on the Iranian regime. Our pressure is working. We'll continue this line of effort to convince Iran not to move forward with their nuclear program, development of missiles, & the other malign activities they've been engaged in globally.

The proof of the 'historic success' of the ever working 'maximum pressure' is this:

Secretary Pompeo @SecPompeo - 21:04 UTC · Jul 1, 2019
Iran's regime has taken new steps to advance its nuclear ambitions. Once again, the regime uses its nuclear program to extort the international community and threaten regional security. The world’s top sponsor of terrorism can never be allowed to enrich uranium at any level.
Secretary Pompeo @SecPompeo - 18:28 UTC · Sep 6, 2019
Iran announced it will violate all limits on nuclear research and development. The fact that Iran retains massive uranium enrichment capacity reveals a core weakness of the Iran deal.
Secretary Pompeo @SecPompeo - 12:19 UTC · Nov 7, 2019
Iran’s plans to increase its nuclear activity at Fordow raise concerns that Iran is positioning itself for a rapid nuclear breakout. It is now time for all nations to reject its nuclear extortion and increase pressure.

Today Iran started to feed Uranium hexafluoride into some 700 new centrifuges. They will increase its stockpile of enriched Uranium.

As the maximum pressure does not create the desired results the U.S., or some other country, tried to use an outrageous provocation:

The European Union and United States expressed concern on Thursday at Iran’s holding of an inspector from the U.N. nuclear watchdog last week, with the U.S. envoy to the agency calling it an “outrageous provocation” that must have consequences.
Iran confirmed that it prevented the inspector from gaining access to its main uranium-enrichment facility at Natanz. Its envoy to the International Atomic Energy Agency told reporters that it was because she tested positive for traces of explosives but then no longer did after going to the toilet while waiting for a further search, which prompted further investigation.

Nice try. Good that it did not work. That inspector will never again work in Iran.

Iran is fully within its rights when it de-designates certain IAEA inspectors. The guidelines for Comprehensive Safeguards Agreements (pdf) with the IAEA, which apply to the CSA Iran signed, stipulate:


9. The Agreement should provide that the State shall take the necessary steps to ensure that Agency inspectors can effectively discharge their functions under the Agreement. The Agency shall secure the consent of the State to the designation of Agency inspectors to that State. If the State, either upon proposal of a designation or at any other time after a designation has been made, objects to the designation, the Agency shall propose to the State an alternative designation or designations.

There are some 160 IAEA inspectors designated for Iran. It will be easy to find a replacement for the one that had to leave.

It is quite sensible that Iran has extensive access controls at its facilities for arriving IAEA inspectors. Many of these inspectors are likely spies and some may have nefarious intent. Even a tiny bit of explosives could create some critical damage to the control systems at Natanz. Spreading some tiny amount of highly enriched Uranium in an Iranian facility would be another simple trick to create some rhetorical uproar at the IAEA.

Secretary Pompous is Trump's point man for the Iran issue. He has failed to achieve the declared aim and has little to no credibility left. He will soon leave his position to run for the Senate to then use that position as a jump board for a presidential candidacy in the 2024 election. Some evangelicals would probably vote for him, but I do not see how he would get much traction beyond that group.

As the 'maximum pressure' campaign fails to achieve its objective we will now probably see a phase of more dirty tricks from the CIA and Mossad side. In mid 2017 the CIA, then under Pompous, created an Iran taskforce of which so far was little heard:

Iran has been one of the hardest targets for the C.I.A. The agency has extremely limited access to the country — no American embassy is open to provide diplomatic cover — and Iran’s intelligence services have spent nearly four decades trying to counter American espionage and covert operations.

The challenge to start carrying out President Trump’s views falls to Mr. D’Andrea, a chain-smoking convert to Islam, who comes with an outsize reputation and the track record to back it up: Perhaps no single C.I.A. official is more responsible for weakening Al Qaeda.

Two and a half year must have been sufficient time to prepare for some rather large operations. Over the next few months we will likely hear of them.

Posted by b on November 7, 2019 at 18:44 UTC | Permalink

next page »

So NYT is building up D'Andrea now? He's going to save our ass?

They must be desperate. I would not recommend they do anything violent, they will get it back with interest, and someplace where they'd prefer not.

Posted by: Bemildred | Nov 7 2019 19:21 utc | 1

An interesting way to celebrate the breaking of international law and further solidifying the fact that the Outlaw US Empire's indeed the #1 Rogue Nation. As Zarif tweeted two days ago:

"Our response to US #EconomicTerrorism & blackmail is opposite of what @realDonaldTrump was led to believe.

"Our 4th step to suspend a #JCPOA provision is foreseen in Para 36 as remedy to US+E3 violations.

"Easy solution for E3/EU: Abide by your obligations & we'll reverse course."

As I've noted before, Iranian negotiators of the JCPOA were 100% correct to assume the Outlaw US Empire would break the agreement and that Iran needed to include the counter measures it would take into the treaty so they'd be legal. I guess I owe John Kerry an apology of sorts as Pompeo is clearly in a class by himself when it comes to being a lying buffoon, rendering Kerry an ace diplomat in comparison.

Magnier has published a related article noting the futility endured by the Outlaw US Empire and its vassals in trying to break Iran by attacking its allies in the Arc of Resistance. Also of note is As’ad AbuKhalil--The Angry Arab--latest essay pinning the blame for Lebanon's current problems on the Saudi/Zionist 5th Columnist Rafiq Hariri, who the Zionists assassinated in an attempt to frame Syria and Hezbollah in preparation for their 2006 offensive against Hezbollah.

Posted by: karlof1 | Nov 7 2019 19:25 utc | 2

Haspel visiting the Saudi king.

Looks like team Trump cooking up something.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Nov 7 2019 19:40 utc | 3

Since the USA pulled out of the Iran nuclear agreement, it's null and void, so Iran has no obligation to stick to it.

It's like the way that the West violated the Budapest agreement when it interfered in Ukraine by supporting the 2014 coup. But that agreement still is presented as one that Russia broke a month later by taking over Crimea.

Posted by: Brendan | Nov 7 2019 19:44 utc | 4

Thanks for the posting b. Yes, the global private finance led empire has always used dirty tricks and war as methods of control over countries that refuse to become colonies.

If empire cannot be brought down by China/Russia in the short term then it is in Iran's best interests to develop nuclear weapons, like North Korea, to defend itself.

To the extent that Pompous, as you refer to him, and others obfuscate the fact that empire uses nukes to threaten countries, the brainwashed masses will continue to have FAITH that the governments of empire are doing God's work, just like those of global private finance.

It is encouraging to know that China is not a civilization brainwashed and led by those of FAITH

Posted by: psychohistorian | Nov 7 2019 19:51 utc | 5

thanks b... secretary pompous... that is exactly it.. perfect name for a water carrier for the exceptional empire too..

here is his blab today in the usa press briefings..

The World Must Address Iran’s Nuclear Escalation

Iran’s latest nuclear escalations reflect the regime’s intentions all along: to extort the international community into accepting its violence and terror - read the rest of the lies and bullshite here.. it is a wonder these liars can sleep at night, let alone go to church on sundays..

Posted by: james | Nov 7 2019 19:53 utc | 6

and today from e j magnier - Lebanon and Iraq protestors: The US, Israel and Saudi Arabia are fed up with Iran 1/4

Posted by: james | Nov 7 2019 20:03 utc | 7

i see karlof1 linked to that @2.. oh well..

Posted by: james | Nov 7 2019 20:04 utc | 8

"Pompeo the pompous": has a nice ring to it :-)

Posted by: deschutes | Nov 7 2019 20:06 utc | 9

@ james who wrote
it is a wonder these liars can sleep at night, let alone go to church on sundays..

The liars feel fine going to church on Sunday because the monotheistic religions are complicit in supporting not only global private finance but usury as well...sham fronts for their own teachings/gospel.

Religions are forms of myth that attempt to help us know how to live a "good" life but if they don't walk their talk then they are part of the problem and their followers are brainwashed sheep.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Nov 7 2019 20:14 utc | 10

After 1 Year of 'Maximum Pressure', it is now 'time to increase the pressure'


Pom(pous)Asshole should get a dictionary and look up the definition of 'maximum'

Posted by: Et Tu Brute | Nov 7 2019 20:27 utc | 11

Things are going to get very interesting after Russia and China consolidate their positions in gold bullion and exclude the petrodollar from their economies where Iran will be well positioned to be a intermediary in oil transactions throughout the region.
If the US continues to wage economic war against all three of them through sanctions, and the USS Abraham Lincoln tries to pull a Gulf of Tonkin false flag attack, its soldiers will have to hope they can become prisoners of war instead of going down with the ship. The Pentagon has admitted that all three have the means to sink the ship. The Russians and Chinese have hypersonic missiles ready to do the deed that our defenses can't detect in time to shoot down, assuming they could shoot down hypersonic missiles in the first place.

Posted by: Vonu | Nov 7 2019 20:30 utc | 12

Surely no one cares about anything nuclear.
The Iranian threat is the conventional weapons (and drones) that it manufactures and which threaten Saudi, Israel, anything in the gulf and US ships or aircraft.

"Nuclear" is just code for "conventional". And neatly avoids Saudi/Israel/US having to admit that they have a competent enemy.

Posted by: Michael Droy | Nov 7 2019 20:33 utc | 13


Itis a toss up which way is best. At the moment, Iran comes under Russia's nuclear protection. Iran building nukes quite likely guarantees a Trump admin US attack. On the other hand, Trump may decide Putin is bluffing and attack anyway. Best way would be for Russia to station forces in Iran so a US attack is an attack on Russian forces, but I doubt Iran would allow this - though I think under the oil deal Iran has with China, Chinese forces will be stationed in Iran.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Nov 7 2019 20:36 utc | 14

Pompous reminds me of the asterix character Noxius Vapus.

This character is Caesar's envoy to Gaul and meets with repeated setbacks.

In current parlance Pompous couldn't walk and chew gum at the same time.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Nov 7 2019 20:38 utc | 15

Where's the Trump apologists to tell us of his 11-dimensional chess whereby he'll give Pompeo and Jared just enough rope to hang themselves?

And where's the elites are divided! misdirection?

C'mon guys, you're slacking off.

<> <> <> <> <> <> <> <>

So now we find out that ABC news had all the Epstein info 3 years ago (2016). Wow. Such a good thing that the Clinton's friend Trump won the election or the public would be hating on Hillary. But many insist that IT'S NOT CONCEIVABLE that Clinton deliberately lost to Trump. Just can't be. They looked so surprised! ... and the elites are divided! LMAO.


Posted by: Jackrabbit | Nov 7 2019 20:41 utc | 16

There is no doubt about Pompous's ability to chew,while walking back to the Buffet table
frequently. He eats the table for desert as well by the look of him, a heart attack will
take him to his just deserts shortly.

Posted by: winston2 | Nov 7 2019 21:01 utc | 17

I've been calling the Pompeo by the label "Pompino", which is quite a vulgar term in Italian and so I won't translate it here; it's very easy to use a translate tool, and I think MoA readers will find it funny.

Mike Pompino...once you know what it means I guarantee you'll laugh.

Posted by: Theophrastus | Nov 7 2019 21:01 utc | 18

Peter AU1 #3

Haspel visiting the Saudi king. Looks like team Trump cooking up something.

From the link: It said the king and Gina Haspel discussed topics of interest but gave no further details

No doubt they were discussing recipes and the new CIA bonesaw with high voltage blade for added effect.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Nov 7 2019 21:05 utc | 19

The “Big Ass Pompeo Pompous”

Posted by: Nathan Mulcahy | Nov 7 2019 21:08 utc | 20

Whatever the integrity of this 16 months study, the Pentagon people and little pompous will not be smiling:

Iran">>Iran Has Effective Military Advantage Over US, Allies in Mideast, New Report Claims

A fresh in-depth study of Iran’s military capabilities and balance of power in the embattled Middle East has assumed that regional wars are being waged on two layers - between states and in a so-called “grey zone”, where no conventional force can counterbalance Iran’s sovereign dominance.
As one of the most detailed assessments of Iran’s military strategy suggests, the Islamic Republic’s “third party capability” has becomes Tehran’s most prominent weapon of choice.

The 16-month study by the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS) called Iran’s Networks of Influence claims that the networks, including Shia militias fighting in what it says is a “grey zone”, for instance, are something Iran heavily relies on, even to a greater extent than conventional military forces.[.]

Although the report concedes that overall military balance is still in favour of the US and allies, the balance of effective forces has shifted towards Iran and is currently in the Islamic Republic’s favour. The study goes on to claim that “Iran is fighting and winning wars ‘fought amongst the people’, not wars between states”.[.]

"winning wars fought amongst the people" That's where it counts and something US and allies can't comprehend. As the Chinese will tell us - "give me 1,000 little friends instead of 3 biggies."

Posted by: Likklemore | Nov 7 2019 21:09 utc | 21

Jackrabbit #16

Where's the Trump apologists to tell us of his 11-dimensional chess whereby he'll give Pompeo and Jared just enough rope to hang themselves?

I was thinking of 2 milimeter monofilament cord, rope is so ... vulgar.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Nov 7 2019 21:12 utc | 22

@ Me being fat fingered. Apologies for badly structured link.

Iran Has Effective Military Advantage Over US, Allies in Mideast, New Report Claims"

Posted by: Likklemore | Nov 7 2019 21:13 utc | 23

Theophrastus #18

Pompeo = pompino :))

No wonder Bolt-on looked deflated on his departure.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Nov 7 2019 21:16 utc | 24

From the Rueters article b links to.

"Iran’s envoy to the IAEA told reporters the inspector was stopped because she tested positive for traces of explosives but then no longer did after going to the toilet while waiting for a further search, which prompted further investigation.
Iran also circulated a memo to member states describing in detail the incident that it said began around 11 a.m. on Oct. 28, including that the inspector “sneaked out to go to the WC” and that “alarming signals” were found on a toilet bowl and parts of exit piping, which were dismantled for checks."

Not testing positive to explosive traces after going to the WC is odd. Those traces stay even if an explosive is discarded.

More likely related to something nuclear.
"The first issue reported to us can only be seen as an indication of possible undeclared nuclear material in Iran – material that could still be present in Iran today, outside safeguards monitoring. Thus far, Iran has refused to provide – and apparently cannot provide – a credible, verifiable answer to the fundamental question of where the particles detected by the IAEA came from, and where the material and equipment they came from is today."

IAEA board of governors. (September 20)
"Saudi Arabia has won a membership in the board of governors of the International Atomic Energy Agency on Thursday, according to the state news agency.

The board is responsible for making most of the policy of the IAEA. The board makes recommendations to the general conference on IAEA activities and budget."

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Nov 7 2019 21:17 utc | 25

Likklemore #21

The report gives a little context to the private finance occupiers of Yemen. Lately there have been some rapid restructuring of tactics by the would-be occupiers. These private finance occupation terrorists are absolutely desperate to obliterate Iranian influence on that immense/strategic peninsular.

There is a drop or two of oil to be had as well. That seems to be enough for Trump to get excited.

Perhaps they are seeking to lure Iran into that assault against humanity.

Whatever the motivation, I suspect the private finance occupation terrorists are desperate to prevent another Houthi victory over their oil infrastructure. That this report comes out now AFTER the realisation of Houthi and Iran missile and drone capability is odd.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Nov 7 2019 21:30 utc | 26

"... Iran’s envoy to the IAEA told reporters the inspector was stopped because she tested positive for traces of explosives but then no longer did after going to the toilet while waiting for a further search, which prompted further investigation ..."

That must have been one helluva case of diarrhoea.

Perhaps some time in the next couple of years or so, the Iranian Academy of Medical Sciences will post an article by the police narcotics investigation ... er, I mean the relevant forensic medical people on what they found in tests on the water saved from that episode. Watch their space.

Posted by: Jen | Nov 7 2019 21:31 utc | 27

The following could explain actions and decisions of China and Russia and anyone who aids them in relation to Iran and everything else; they both/all seem to me to try to avoid or lessen another US-spawned economic disaster (and this also means the US most come down relatively softly over longer time) as well as more wars (because they are all disasters, even the "good" ones) and maybe also other less obvious goals towards a more harmonious humanity.

If this is right then they're the ones figuratively operating as if in the "11 dimensions" of M-theory (unified superstring theory) because it must be anything but easy to do both/all.

They deserve all the help they can get (particularly from anyone in the US).

Posted by: Sunny Runny Burger | Nov 7 2019 21:34 utc | 28

If ABC had the Epstein story with the Clinton connection three years ago, does that mean they had it before the 2016 election?

New story: CBS just fired the employee who leaked the ABC story.

I guess they're sticking together.

Posted by: lysias | Nov 7 2019 21:58 utc | 29

@ Jen | Nov 7 2019 21:31 utc | 27

I trust that the security personnel who investigated the dodgy inspector didn't fish out any cellophane-wrapped perfume bottles from the lavatory waste basket. ;)

Posted by: Ort | Nov 7 2019 22:00 utc | 30

Ali Hosseini Khamenei issued a fatwa against the production and use of weapons of mass destruction, although this is a genuine declaration it will mean nothing to the US, in fact it could work against the interests of Iran because with Iran enriching nuclear fuel, [as it is entitled to do] it is far easier for the US to accuse Iran of going for an eventual breakout and assemble a coalition of the willing, not to wage war on Iran necessarily, but to pile more sanctions on. In my opinion whereas a nuclear weapon is a weapon of mass destruction capable of killing many thousands, conventional missiles could also kill many thousands of people, so from a moral point of view there is not much difference.

Posted by: Harry Law | Nov 7 2019 22:02 utc | 31

Peter AU 1 @25--

Likely the detector was a "sniffer" capable of detecting a wide spectrum but unable to be specific. Whatever was flushed was then no longer detectible. I my experience, if you set off a detector, you don't get to go to the WC here within the Outlaw US Empire. IMO, all the theatrics are for domestic consumption since BigLie media has yet to tell the truth that by illegally withdrawing from the JCPOA, the Outlaw US Empire effectively rendered the treaty null and void, especially when sanctions were reapplied. In other words, Pompous has nothing and no grounds upon which to launch any complaints--reasoning directly told to Pompous at the last IAEA meeting on the subject.

Posted by: karlof1 | Nov 7 2019 22:03 utc | 32

@ Peter AU1 | Nov 7 2019 21:17 utc | 25

thanks, i was just going to illuminate that fact. i'd posted the sept. 19 version at my home website, and dug around a bit more and found: adds:

“It also appoints the Director General of the IAEA, with the approval of the General Conference.”

i'd also grabbed stephen lendman's 'Was Foul Play Behind IAEA Chief Yukiya Amano’s Death?', July 24, 2019 (a coupe snippets):

“His death came at a time of heightened tensions between Iran and the West because of Trump regime-led hostility toward the country.
During his tenure, he oversaw the landmark JCPOA nuclear deal’s adoption by its signatories and Security Council members, making it binding international law."

He “was reportedly standing against the US and Israeli ‘heavy pressures to open a false case against Iran on the nuclear issue,’ the sources said.”

“There is evidence that the (US and Israel) were constantly pressuring Amano to accuse Iran of violation of the 2015 nuclear deal…contrary to all technical and legal reports by the IAEA that confirmed Iran’s compliance with the JCPOA, as a leverage for implementing Donald Trump’s ‘pressure-talks’ scheme, they said.”

“The sources also said that the US and Israel had kept the news of death of Amano in the dark for a couple of days after his funeral.”
The CIA and Israel’s Mossad have long disturbing histories of assassinating individuals for political reasons.”

Posted by: wendy davis | Nov 7 2019 22:06 utc | 33

@29 XLemming.. you'll have to forgive me... i recently read about how pompous was so happy to be back in the kansas area so that he could attend his local church... when you position that with the endless lies he utters in the high corridors of the usa media, it can't be left un mentioned by me anyway... the hypocrisy in this guy is astounding.. i guess it goes with his job.. and frankly, i have noticed that some of those, but not all - who practice orthodox religion are extremely hypocritical.. politicians are usually the worst.. it is all about image and their is no substance to back it up..

Posted by: james | Nov 7 2019 22:31 utc | 34

Remember this =>
{Syrian Al-Qaeda Commander: US Forces Are Arming Us in Syria]

Posted by: snake | Nov 7 2019 22:47 utc | 35

Thanks b for the dead parrot video. In colour too, that was a treat.

On the subject of dead parrots and ridiculous communications there is C J Hopkins on wikipedia.

Barflies be warned citing wikipedia as a reliable source is the same as citing the Grauniad.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Nov 7 2019 22:58 utc | 36

"...One can be a follower of Christ and be anti-zionist, anti-empire & anti-war... "
The astonishing thing is that people who are pro-zionist, pro-empire and pro-war can claim to be followers of Christ.

Posted by: bevin | Nov 7 2019 22:59 utc | 37

@37 uncle t... that is very old news, but probably worth repeating for anyone not familiar with the prop shop wikipedia..

@ 38 bevin... good point.. that is more of that hypocrisy i mentioned on display as i see it..

Posted by: james | Nov 7 2019 23:06 utc | 38

@ james 8
i see karlof1 linked to that @2.. oh well..
It's just "oh well" that you don't read previous comments??

Posted by: Don Bacon | Nov 7 2019 23:10 utc | 39

@UncleT 26

There is a drop or two of oil to be had as well. That seems to be enough for Trump to get excited.

Sanctionista Trump sees the writing on the wall with shale energy: for a few months the US had bragging rights as the world's largest gas and oil producer. Now in decline, Trump has to grab every cup of oil and gas from Syria {h/t to J.W.Dean, Veterans Today for 'sanctionista Mr. Trump'}

F. William Engdahl asks: Can the US continue to base policy on its leading role in gas and oil, or is this merely a blip due to end as suddenly as it appeared?

Posted by: Likklemore | Nov 7 2019 23:14 utc | 40

Given what has happened with the OPCW (recent whistleblower reports)and Syria it's obvious that Iran would be crazy to trust the UN.

Posted by: Dave | Nov 7 2019 23:22 utc | 41

New reports related to the attack on an Iranian tanker in the Red Sea were published today which aside from the Wall Street Journal the Outlaw US Empire ignored.

Given Iranian behavior, there's no way the IAEA will ever discover anything malicious with Iran's nuclear program, while the world is correct to direct its attention to Occupied Palestine's nuclear program. What must infuriate promoters of the Outlaw US Empire is the great inroads made by ROSATOM's ability to sell its product to other nations now that it's closed the nuclear cycle such that waste isn't the incurable problem it sill remains for GE and Westinghouse. And the same should be said for all aspects of higher technology competition, with China announcing 6G Network development while it initiates its 5G system as but one example.

On another thread, it was asked how much longer must the world continue to abide the Outlaw US Empire's existence. As de-dollarization escalates through trade in other currencies thanks to the BRI, EAEU, ASEAN, RCEP, and BRICS commercial development efforts resulting in an alternative payments system, the ability of the Outlaw US Empire to influence other nation's behavior will wane to the point where it's no longer effective. The great unknown: Will the Outlaw US Empire attempt to stem that decline via open warfare or will it continue to use its Hybrid War methods that have only served to accelerate de-dollarization? We can glimpse how hard the Anglo elite will fight to continue Neoliberalism by events in the UK where the political fight's getting uglier daily.

Posted by: karlof1 | Nov 7 2019 23:31 utc | 42

There is no doubt about Pompous's ability to chew,while walking back to the Buffet table frequently. He eats the table for desert as well by the look of him...

LOL...they don't call him The Malignant Manatee for nothing...after he eats his way through Washington, he can always retire to the waterways of Florida where he can binge on turtle grass to his heart's content...

Posted by: flankerbandit | Nov 7 2019 23:36 utc | 43

I used to get some enjoyment outta cold war spy stories - the real ones not the james bond type tosh, but as with so many things when one ages, obtaining a 40 or 50 year perspective reduces the original or even shocking to the repetitive or mundane.

Just as england's assurance of its superiority (ethical as well as military) caused an innate self belief in its invulnerability & always triumphant record - despite plenty of instances to the contrary, which in turn led to lazy thinking from types highly skilled at bureaucratic in-fighting but nothing else, inspired a series of major embarrassments, the worst being that of soviet hero George Blake a chap few talk about any longer chiefly due to his lack of an englander aristo background), amerikan intelligence has been making exactly the same type of screw ups.

They too, run intelligence organisations full of careerists, time servers and hubris sodden nincompoops more concerned with ensuring their masters score instant short-lived political points than providing objective analysis upon which a long term policy could be based.

There is at least one special feature which raises the level of the mess amerikan intelligence is in above the mundane.
That is the way that whitefella superiority allowed the CIA to develop & use easily penetrable agent communications techniques for ME agents on the grounds that 'those cave-dwelling sand-n+++ers are too stupid to work it out (much the same attitude as that displayed by some bunnies on this forum).
As Bemildred's link says, not only did the Iranians uncover the entire network of agents inside Iran, they passed the technique on to PRC, who then rolled up the network of CIA paid traitors inside China.
Someone eventually told Russia who began to do the same when the penny finally dropped at Langley. A pitiful performance, as the review which should have occurred post the Iranian success, either did not take place, or was too much about duck-shoving and arse-covering to get the the real cause.

The CIA, as we are told in just about every lame TV spy show "invented compartmentalization", yet they do not seem to practice it since both China and Iran succeeded in uncovering what were meant to be independent, discrete cells.

This is the main reason for skeptical disbelief when being informed of some complex scheme amerikan intelligence is allegedly implementing. That gang of charlatans, screw-ups and delusional dingbats would struggle to run a piss-up at a pub.

Posted by: A User | Nov 7 2019 23:46 utc | 44

These knuckleheads have lost their minds. Their behavior, and their statements, are becoming more bizzare by the day.

Posted by: Josh | Nov 7 2019 23:52 utc | 45

@ Peter AU1 14

I believe that I read that about 5000 Chinese recently arrived in Iran to work on oil sector improvements. A sizable contingent of Chinese military for protection wouldn't be out of the ordinary, but expect Iranian leadership to be cautious and deft.

A piece by Ben Norton posted on CN concerning a US funded "Syrian Study Group" lays out the depravity and cruelty the US has descended into. The language of these think-tankers drips with the hatred and death-cult of the Zionists.

The Houthis on the offensive again...

Uprisings in Iraq and Lebanon...

Too many pieces in motion to keep track of, or make sense of. Like I'm listening to Ravel's La Valse.

Posted by: vinnieoh | Nov 7 2019 23:55 utc | 46

The Oil Patch is a big factor guiding Outlaw US Empire strategy against Iran. This report analyzes ExxonMobil's Permian Shale performance; here's a tidbit:

"Last year, ExxonMobil invested $7.67 billion of CAPEX on its U.S. Upstream sector while earning $1.7 billion. In the first three quarters of 2019, ExxonMobil spent $8.8 billion in CAPEX to earn $468 million....

"While I am no financial genius, ExxonMobil received an average $54.51 a barrel in Q3 2019, but only made $37 million of earnings on selling 60 million barrels of [Permian Shale] oil. Where are the double-digit gains??"

Nice charts, more info and a pointed observation at the end:

"Currently, ExxonMobil reported $4.5 billion of Free Cash Flow Q1-Q3 2019. However, the company paid out $10.9 billion in Shareholder dividends. Thus, ExxonMobil had to borrow (or sell assets) worth $6.4 billion just to cover its dividend payouts.

"If the oil price doesn’t turn around and head higher in the fourth quarter, ExxonMobil will have to borrow more money to pay dividends."

Borrowing money to pay dividends is the definition of a Ponzi Scheme. The vaunted Outlaw US Empire's independence from foreign oil's just the chimera it's been for decades.

Posted by: karlof1 | Nov 8 2019 0:05 utc | 47

Clearly Iran is a nut that the hotheads in DC cannot crack...what's also interesting is how pathetic the EU vassals really are...

Clearly Iran is correct that the E3 after more than a year of empty noises about preserving the deal, is not living up to anything...their much ballyhooed bypass mechanism is obviously a nothingburger...

It seems Iran fully anticipated this turn of events back when the deal was struck, thus the legal provisions for them to back out if the other parties did not fulfill their obligations...

In the four years that have passed, the world has already changed plenty...Russia has forcefully rejected the Syria project and China has only increased its global influence...

Iran figures correctly that they don't need the dysfunctional west as a new world order is taking shape that will include Iran, while doing everything possible to bring down the imperialist system that appears to be on its last legs anyway...

I will just add that Iran is better off without this deal anyway, since it entails giving up rights to peaceful nuclear energy that every other signatory to the non-proliferation treaty enjoys...

The Iranians don't need nuclear weapons...they have already built up quite formidable conventional forces, especially their rocket forces and can inflict a devastating blow that is enough of a deterrent to any player in the region...including the US...

Posted by: flankerbandit | Nov 8 2019 0:07 utc | 48

vinnieoh 47

I linked a couple of early Trump interviews from 1980 and 87 in recent threads.
This one is 1980.

Trump hates Iran for embarrassing the US add to that zionism and oil. The interview from 87 was the same as the 1980 interview - Iran and their oil.
He has wanted to hit Iran for fourty years and now he is US president and Commander in Chief of the US military. the 87 interview was not just Iran's oil but middle east oil.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Nov 8 2019 0:16 utc | 49

The 1987 Trump interview.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Nov 8 2019 0:26 utc | 50

@karlof1 etc
Re: Exxon, Permian oil

here's what I'm seeing.

they were looking at too high transportation in 2018. depending on how early they signed contracts for pipeline capacity, perhaps making no money due to that. (2018-mid2019, texas production expanded faster than pipelines, transport costs from Permian to gulf coast refineries rose by $10+ / barrel above the usual level).

I left a link on this morning's naked capitalism links in the comments with the graph. see WTI midland spreads...

I think: Around end of 2018, they are making plans for 2019, they see the transport cost is spiking. they change plans for 2019, stop growth, which becomes flat, as your link shows. They manage drilling to match the amount of oil they plan to deliver (for which they probably committed to buy transport too).

The decline rate is something they all know about, the production is managed to meet the amount they sold and that is managed to match the amount of transport capacity, unless something goes wrong. Exxon, unlike a lot of the little companies, can afford to do long term planning, and to stop growth when they are not making money, as was the case this year.

Its the usual cycle in terms of money - the price will rise or fall to make the amounts produced add up, with +/- 25-50% swings. the environmental issues are a different matter, they're using a crapload of water which becomes dirty and has to be put somewhere, wasting half the gas, and enabling the country remain energy inefficient.

Posted by: ptb | Nov 8 2019 0:32 utc | 51

a first step would be for the usa to separate itself from israel... israels paranoia as demonstrated towards iran, doesn't have to be the usa's paranoia... but if the usa foreign policy remains totally fixated on looking after israel, then nothing much will change... anyone who says usa foreign policy is not beholden to israel is not paying attention...

Posted by: james | Nov 8 2019 0:52 utc | 52

@ : Brendan | Nov 7 2019 19:44 utc | 4

JCPOA is not null and void. It is law since the UNSC gave it status. That the US and satraps pretend otherwise is not relevant.

The point is that one party is actually obeying this law - Iran.

Posted by: Walter | Nov 8 2019 1:33 utc | 53

@Peter AU1 50,51

Thanks for the links, I think. It was depressing reading the comments below those vids. The guy is so shallow. It is a feat of pretzel logic that continues to amaze me, the biggest bully on the block whining about being a victim.

I used to comment excessively about the effect of "injured" US dignity of Iranians kicking the US out and saying "And STAY out!" In all the posturing and vilification there was never any acknowledgement of the US/UK engineered coup in '53, the subsequent bloody puppet rule of the Shah and the building of SAVAK by the US/UK/Mossad to terrorize the US' and their puppet's enemies. Nor of the US and Europe's role in supporting Sadam in the Iran/Iraq war, etc. It's all just Islamic fanaticism and malignancy. Yeah.

Posted by: vinnieoh | Nov 8 2019 1:42 utc | 54


It is why I don't go along with the self comfort committee. US is a mess, but Trump ia a dangerous opponent. He talks of countries respecting the US or theUS military. By that, he means fear. Most US admins have been hemmed in to a certain extent by having to give the appearance of moral leadership, democracy and nation building. Trump doesn't care about any of that.
He is more old time, pre united nations, age of empires.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Nov 8 2019 2:06 utc | 55

@ yc8o86lk the 2002 war game against iran is discussed. van Ripper (USMC (ret) running the Iran forces sank the US fleet in 10 minutes without atombombs. (add tinyurl prefix) "Millennium Challenge: The Real Story of a Corrupted Military Exercise and its Legacy"

The ability to make them may be an advantage...and Iran certainly has this ability.

As we see, actually making them is not, generally, an advantage, as the US has illustrated by losing one war after another since 1945.

Aljazeera seems to be beating the totalbs songs of war and yes indeed The P-Man does seems to be about to discover he's delusional - like when Iran actually does sink the fleet.

If the US suffers a major defeat...well then Bill Pfaff's essay "Will the Pentagon Be the Next U.S. Institution to Crash? " will have an answer... @yxnoms5f

The MIC is perhaps the final Icon to be destroyed as a mythic existence dissolves into crime.

Posted by: Walter | Nov 8 2019 2:14 utc | 56

there might be some threats to Iran via cia covert shenanigans - perhaps a threat from computer hacking or malware or viruses are in the pipeline, again! the CIA has a bad habit of assassinating people (Iranian nuclear scientists) and covert ops where valuable things are blown up or damaged

You know like the Empire these days can't actually build much of anything, just blow things up , and often entire countries/societies e.g. Iraq to Libya to Syria to Yemen


threats to Iran are far more likely to come from losing key support and supporters in Iraq and Lebanon as these societies are shaken with protests, some of that obviously Western and Saudi backed (especially in poor Lebanon, hence the Chief Torturer I mean CIA Haspel in The Kingdom)

I'd look for more US-directed political and economic attacks on regional allies, then against Iran itself

Posted by: michaelj72 | Nov 8 2019 2:45 utc | 57

karlof1 33

The sniffers at airports are for detecting nitrates. From other reports I have read it was supposedly nitrates Iran detected.
Wikipedia has this
"The product is so named because its level of detection is comparable to highly trained explosives detection dogs, the gold standard in explosives detection technology."

I had taken it that the detectors picked up traces of the scent or vapor on clothes and bags, which I thought would not disappear immediately. But perhaps if there are no particles on the clothes or bags then the vapor or scent may quickly disappear if the explosive is ditched.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Nov 8 2019 2:49 utc | 58

Pompeo: Iran’s expansion of proliferation-sensitive activities raises concerns that Iran is positioning itself to have the option of a rapid nuclear breakout.

What is breakout? It isn't just obtaining the raw fuel required for a nuclear weapon. That's sort of like saying that if a country has TNT it has a deliverable conventional bomb. There's more to it.

First, the common definition of breakout is the achievement of 25 kilograms of highly enriched uranium gas. But a nuclear weapon doesn't somehow pop out of gas centrifuges. A nuclear weapon cannot be made of gas. The gas must be converted to metal, a difficult and very dangerous process because of the high potential for a critical accident (like a nuclear reactor without shielding) that would kill anyone in the room or nearby.

Even if Iran developed a basic nuclear weapon, it would require more advanced technology to miniaturize the warhead to fit into a small missile cone. Iran would need to conduct nuclear tests to prove its warheads. The USA and USSR conducted hundreds of tests over many years to develop this expertise.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Nov 8 2019 4:39 utc | 59

Don Bacon

Has Israel conducted tests. Nuclear bombs are now old tech.
Tean Trump crap on about Iran being able to enrich uranium to build a bomb in a certain timeframe.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Nov 8 2019 4:53 utc | 60

Peter AU1
Are you suggesting that Israel didn't test?
And the point is that a bomb can't be built with enriched uranium gas, which is what they imply with their "breakout" scare.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Nov 8 2019 5:02 utc | 61
"Uranium hexafluoride (UF6), colloquially known as "hex" in the nuclear industry, is a compound used in the process of enriching uranium, which produces fuel for nuclear reactors and nuclear weapons.

Hex forms solid grey crystals at standard temperature and pressure, is highly toxic, reacts with water, and is corrosive to most metals. The compound reacts mildly with aluminium, forming a thin surface layer of AlF3 that resists any further reaction from the compound."
"Uranium hexafluoride is used in uranium processing because its unique properties make it very convenient. It can conveniently be used as a gas for processing, as a liquid for filling or emptying containers or equipment, and as a solid for storage, all at temperatures and pressures commonly used in industrial processes."

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Nov 8 2019 5:32 utc | 62

Reading through some of the stuff for enriching uranium, nitrates play a part in the process. From reports it was nitrate sniffers that set of the alarms in Iran. So either conventional explosives being smuggled in or the US Israel were intending to salt some sites.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Nov 8 2019 5:39 utc | 63

Salting sites with uranium compounds seems more likely as US would like to use the snapback provisions in the nuke deal. Using the snapback provisions then puts Russia and China on the spot when it comes to their dealings with Iran.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Nov 8 2019 5:49 utc | 64

@ Peter AU 1 with comment # 65 describing one of the dirty tricks being tried

Thanks for that dirty trick description. We can only assume that they will try others and that desperation will get folks killed in the process.....sigh

Posted by: psychohistorian | Nov 8 2019 6:06 utc | 65

I agree with Peter on the 'salting'...that would seem to make a lot of sense in terms of forcing Russia's and China's hand...

Pretty amazing story when you think about it...that this dumbshit woman spy who was somehow infiltrated into the nuclear inspection team thought she could actually get away with something like this...too bad they let her go to the washroom instead of a cavity search and finding the goods on her...

How do you look yourself in the mirror when your job is the dirtiest of the dirty takes all kinds...

Posted by: flankerbandit | Nov 8 2019 6:09 utc | 66

After the totally brain-dead show of "concern etc.", Macron makes a speech that NATO became "brain dead" for the lack of strategy and cooperation, blah blah, somehow the way SDF/YPG got mauled got to him, and mutti Markel protested, "oh no, how can we sleep at night without NATO! I want to sniff my security blanket when I need to sleep! Awful Macron, awful!". Typical periodic show of French "independence of thinking" by making pirouettes. How about Markel and Macron actually standing for their own words and trading with Iran like their promised? Markel had her own feeble demonstrations of "independent thinking", at least Germany can show North Stream as an example, just one but more than most! of independence.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Nov 8 2019 7:08 utc | 67

@ Peter AU1 | Nov 8 2019 5:39 utc | 64 (urine/Nx)

I do not quibble that the "lady" was involved in skulldugerous scheme, but please bear in mind that everyone carries nitrates all the time, and disposes of sample several times a day, Na and K salts and carbamide, mostly, if memory serves. 50 - 60 gram/24 hr - somewherez 'round that.

Dried urine saved for cleaning (NH3OH evolves over time) and so on, fertilizer, and making gunpowder is "lant".

Only saying that the nitrate/explosive theory is shaky.

She may have been the decoy running cover for the one they didn't catch...a ringer. Or perhaps they expected her to be jailed to make a "hero" and celebrated outrage...even a cavity search could make feedstock for the drummed songs of war.

Posted by: Walter | Nov 8 2019 7:11 utc | 68

Nitrates generally means explosives. Would a little explosive charge be a good way to "salt a site"?

Neocons take stupid to a whole new level, but then they are fanatics.

Having trashed the OPCW, they now mean to trash the IAEA too. Great strategy. /sarc

The use of the word "breakout" is intended to create urgency, the bums rush, political version. And also to suggest criminality, like an escape, and also a military disaster. It means squat otherwise.

In fact all the fake panic in paid content of all sorts is intended to create urgency. The ad people are getting desperate to show anybody pays attention, I think. The ads get more in your face all the time.

Posted by: Bemildred | Nov 8 2019 7:23 utc | 69

Over here in the Netherlands there is a strike going on by dissatisfied school teachers.
However, by the discussion in parliament about education the opposition thought it necessary
to state that more oversight needs to be had with regards to Chinese and Iranian exchange students,
as China and Iran are supposedly known for using them in espionage shenanigans.

Fun fact: I am old enough to remember that Pakistan stole nuke-u-lar technology
from dutch facilities to develop their atomic weapons program.
Different times, the CIA knew of it but seemed neither for nor against at the time....

Posted by: Mishko | Nov 8 2019 7:23 utc | 70

Nitrates generally mean not explosives but fertilizer. “About 6 million tons of nitrogen fertilizers are produced in the country [Iran] every year. Of this amount, 1.7 million tons are destined for local use and the rest is exported,” Yazdan Seif was also quoted as saying by IRNA.

Iran also makes HMX for explosives (Octogen) and solid propellants.

In W2 the chemist who made the explosive lenses, George Kistiakowsky, is supposed to have invented "aunt jemima" - an edible (well, sorta) explosive that could be baked into cookies....for the OSS.

Does it seem reasoned that the baddboyz down at the shop would not have "better" sprengstoff after what, 75 years?

The only "nuclear secret" was that it's fairly easy to make a gadget. Nobody who's tried has failed to get a nice bang on the first attempt. (Richard Rhodes I think)

Maybe they really are incompetent down at the sse eya a.

Maybe the "lady" failed...or maybe she was the decoy.

Posted by: Walter | Nov 8 2019 7:46 utc | 71

In the Chinese media, Pompeo is called "Special Lying Beast" Pompeo because Trump called Pompeo and Ivanka walking together "Beauty and the Beast".

Pompeo has, of course, boasted about lying, exaggerating and purposely making false accusations as part of his disinformation campaign to attack other countries who do not kowtow to America.

He seems to revel in it, despite his religious background. I guess Exodus 20:16 "Thou shall not bear false witness" is something else in his mind.

Mike Pence is known as the "Silver-haired Man-Witch". Also known for his evangelistic background, chinese commentators are making full use of LOTR memes when it come to "Ultimate Swamp Creature" Trump's cabinet.

Mike Pompeo-- Special Lying Beast

Mike Pence-- Silver-haired Man-Witch

Donald Trump-- Ultimate Swamp Creature

Posted by: UltimateSwmpCreature | Nov 8 2019 7:48 utc | 72

Bevin @ 38, James @ 39:

The pro-Zionist Christians tend to be more anti-Semitic as well. Two conditions presaging the Second Coming of the Messiah in addition to the re-establishment of Israel in the Holy Land are (1) all Jews throughout the world to return to Israel, and (2) all Jews to then convert to Christianity or they will be slaughtered for refusing to convert.

Posted by: Jen | Nov 8 2019 8:17 utc | 73

walter @72: Thanks for nitrates information. I know just enough chemistry to know I don't know chemistry. Now I think about it, decoy works better than anything else for what we know now. Nitrates would work great for a decoy. Maybe Iran will come up with something from their excavations.

Since the War Party never gives up, I've been expecting some new efforts to be clever, after the ongoing debacle of leaving/not leaving Syria. Iran claiming more attacks in the Red Sea. Houthis attacking the Saudis in Mokha, riots in Iraq & Lebanon. Riots all over.

One gets the feeling Pompeo is on the way out. Rumors of running for office.

2020 should be a very interesting year.

Posted by: Bemildred | Nov 8 2019 9:12 utc | 74

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Nov 8 2019 4:53 utc | 61

"Has Israel conducted tests. Nuclear bombs are now old tech."

It's late on a Friday, 'n I've put meself outside too many scotch n sodas to bother lookin it up, but if you search something like "israel nuclear tests South Africa", after wading thru the usual distractions you will discover references to nuclear explosions being detected off the coast of apartheid south africa, sometime in the late '70s or '80s, even at the time these were attributed to the zionists currently occupying Palestine.
If memory still serves, that story surfaced before Mordecai Vanunu informed the world of those creeps disingenuous perfidy vis a vis nuclear arms.

Posted by: A User | Nov 8 2019 9:16 utc | 75

y3nzwh3l (tiny url suffix) Report on the 1979 Vela Incident @ nuclearweaponarchive

SA and Is did, evidently, several tests in rapid sequence. Radio-isotope evidence as well as the emissions. The weather, it is said, failed to cooperate on one test - hence the satintel.

Posted by: Walter | Nov 8 2019 9:32 utc | 76

Sorry bout the add-on, I shoulda made this point initially, but one thing that many of us in the pacific where the scum detonated most of these horror shows in the name of 'testing' do understand is that while many of both the fission and fusion devices were first detonated to satisfy some twisted pervert of a nuclear physicist's contentions about the nature of a particular chain reaction, (eg france continuing atmospheric detonation' long after amerika, USSR had ceased such testing then passing the results on to nato 'allies'), even though all the details have now been 'proved' just about every nation with nukes always detonates one or two. Not because they need to know anything, but rather as a destructive dick swinging exercise to demonstrate to the rest of the world that they too have joined the club of the 'big boys'.

I strongly suspect that Iran has/will choose not to bother with that nonsense, that their first test will be, if they are subjected to provocation beyond reason, a 'small' device detonated in the environs of Tel Aviv - or maybe that is just wishful thinking & Iranians have no intention of wreaking such destruction - even upon zionist scumbags. One thing is for sure if Iran does not possess a nuclear device, it is because Iranians chose not to own such a crime upon this planet, not because of any arsehole state's histrionic exercises in public masturbation.

Posted by: A User | Nov 8 2019 9:38 utc | 77

A User @76: PDF ->


Posted by: Bemildred | Nov 8 2019 9:53 utc | 78

Sorry, that's html, there are also PDFs and it can be bought at Amazon for $14.95.

Posted by: Bemildred | Nov 8 2019 9:56 utc | 79

# 78 > Yes indeed. If they want one they can have one - and they don't want one.

The Vela Test see tinyurl+y6evemm8 (pdf) Los Alamos evaluation of Events

The discussion of U may miss the deeper reality p the better "poot" is Pu.

There is in a practical sense no doubt at all that a well-designed gadget test series took place - and the best or most probable is that they tested enhanced radiation gadget, aka "neutron bomb" - and a pretty small one(s).

An LASL (now LANL) study of physical phenomena possibly related to the Vela detection is available on-line in Acrobat (.pdf) format. This document appears to have been prepared prior to the availability of the Arecibo data mentioned earlier. A description and abstract of the document is given below. The downloaded file is 1.4 megabytes.

Download LA-8672

I recall VVP speaking of political relations 'tween States as "a bit like mathematics" (ie not much room for emotions or for will) - and I say that the terms for the process we're seeing is properly "The Logic of Empire" primarily driven by non-real perception and mythic necessity.

Within that it seems like a fairly sure thing that the fat man and his cohort will be brought to attack Iran.

No plan survives first contact.

Posted by: Walter | Nov 8 2019 9:57 utc | 80

Energy dreaming here and I have been thinking that Trump is utterly focused on fossil energy and Iran nuclear refining. He can't do much about wind and sun and he poo poos those fangled things to the point of sabotaging them.

He is after many oil producing countries that aren't captive vassals of the USA.

So I guess his hatred for Iran is based on its oil, gas and nuclear independence. So I had a peek at nuclear enrichment info and first found this from World Nuclear Association dated February 2019 and include an extract below.

Following proposals from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and Russia, and in connection with the US-led Global Nuclear Energy Partnership (GNEP), there are moves to establish international uranium enrichment centres. These are one kind of multilateral nuclear approaches (MNA) called for by IAEA. Part of the motivation for international centres is to bring all new enrichment capacity, and perhaps eventually all enrichment, under international control as a non-proliferation measure. Precisely what "control" means remains to be defined, and will not be uniform in all situations. But having ownership and operation shared among a number of countries at least means that there is a level of international scrutiny which is unlikely in a strictly government-owned and -operated national facility.

The first of these international centres is the International Uranium Enrichment Centre (IUEC) at Angarsk in Siberia, with Kazakh, Armenian and Ukrainian equity so far. The centre is to provide assured supplies of low-enriched uranium for power reactors to new nuclear power states and those with small nuclear programs, giving them equity in the project, but without allowing them access to the enrichment technology. Russia will maintain majority ownership, and in February 2007 the IUEC was entered into the list of Russian nuclear facilities eligible for implementation of IAEA safeguards. The USA has expressed support for the IUEC at Angarsk. IUEC will sell both enrichment services (SWU) and enriched uranium product.

In some respects this is very similar to what pertained with the Eurodif set-up, where a single large enrichment plant in France with five owners (France – 60%, Italy, Spain, Belgium and Iran) was operated under IAEA safeguards by the host country without giving participants any access to the technology – simply some entitlement to share of the product, and even that was constrained in the case of Iran. The French Atomic Energy Commission proposed that the new Georges Besse II plant which replaced Eurodif should be open to international partnerships on a similar basis, and minor shares in the Areva subsidiary operating company Societe d'Enrichissement du Tricastin (SET) have so far been sold to GDF Suez (now Engie), a Japanese partnership, and Korea Hydro and Nuclear Power (KHNP) – total 12%.

The three-nation Urenco set-up is also similar though with more plants in different countries – UK, Netherlands and Germany – and here the technology is not available to host countries or accessible to other equity holders. Like Russia with IUEC, Urenco (owned by the UK and Netherlands host governments plus E.On and RWE in Germany) has made it plain that if its technology is used in international centres it will not be accessible. Its new plant is in the USA, where the host government has regulatory but not management control.

A few large questions jump off the page so I must continue my yellow cake dreaming and searching.

Ukraine is a shareholder in a Russian venture?

I am mystified why Trump is so silent on the Uranium One deal. Is he now a 'shareholder' in the Clinton Foundation? [I know they are all shareholders in the oligarchy.]

Is Burisma more than just gas?

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Nov 8 2019 10:07 utc | 81

Karlof #47

What I thought more interesting in that report was that the operators in the Permian Basin have been flaring off 750 million cubic feet of gas per day during the 3rd quarter!!!

Hello, flaring of essentially CO2 to the atmosphere has been banned just about everywhere except the most backward of countries unless undergoing production testing. In this case it's being flared off because gas gathering costs make it uneconomical. Where is the EPA and the government in all this?

Posted by: m | Nov 8 2019 10:42 utc | 82

Some further yellow cake thoughts:

USA oligarchs likely see the Eurasian integration with deep dread especially the growing solidarity between China, Russia, Iran, Pakistan and the mighty important African extension. In terms of uranium processing and acquisition the One Belt One Road team could achieve self sufficiency and trade entirely outside of $US system. Equally as the electric technologies of transportation and stationary energy needs mature in the next 20 to 50 years the fossil fuel diggers face a bleak future.

On the uranium import side:- From SCMP February 2019.

Meanwhile, China – through the China National Nuclear Corporation (CNNC) – has been hoovering up resources all over the [African]continent, Namibia included, to the concern of US competitors….

“What seems to worry some US uranium mining companies is China's gradual acquisition of foreign uranium resources through overseas investment and joint ventures,” said Tong Zhao, a fellow at the Carnegie Nuclear Policy Programme in the Carnegie-Tsinghua Centre for Global Policy in Beijing.

These facilities are helping to feed a growing need for uranium in China which, In 2016, China was the fourth largest consumer of uranium in the world, behind the US, France and Russia.

Who mines it:- DANGER Wikipedia source :) here

The country mining the largest amount of uranium is Kazakhstan, which in 2017 produced 39% of the world's mining output. Canada was the next largest producer with a 22% share, followed by Australia with 10%.[1] There are uranium mines on every inhabited continent.

From this sketchy information and my novice assessment I suspect the entire Iran nuclear enrichment hysteria is pointless in terms of the global uranium mining and enrichment game. But may primarily be driven by Israeli histrionics and paranoia plus a Trumpian perversion of the non proliferation agenda (read monopoly interests).

Perhaps there are others at the bar who can enlighten my yellow cake dreaming.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Nov 8 2019 11:05 utc | 83

D. Orlov recently said on Keiser Report the "the US has lost the ability to enrich Uranium." That's phucking incredible, and I did not believe him, but is it true? Possibly he's a bit ahead of reality in this, but the writing may be on the wall. I don't know.

There are several ways to separate isotopes of U. Not every one is generally known, and at least one may be secret, since I have only learned of that one accidentally - from engineers now long dead @ GE.
All are expensive. Centrifuge/UF6 is of course the "best" way, and fairly fast.

A similar molecule structurally is FS6 - which is used in gas-insulated switching, is familiar to me...kinna like butane in the way it looks and leaks and in handling.

uncle tungsten > I doubt that the actions of empire are products of emotion. Rather the circumstances interoperate with the grey force, eg & inter alia with the feeble and delusional. The circumstance is the failure of imperial method. "Grey force is not only the grey matter, of course, but includes all the agitprop (aka grey propaganda, etc)

Naturally this mechanism creates emotional conditions, which then feed the mark ever more deeply on the meat of fantasy...and when fantasy fails to get the desired result, they cannot imagine why the results are not what they expected. Then they double. Babitch (RT/Crosstalk) has compared them to the Soviet's clinging to "infallible" ideology - they're locked in a loop.

And I am expecting them to bomb Iran quite soon - as nothing else is available to their imagination, or even possible at this point, they've come so far down the blind alley...

It's a pity.

We shall see if the war-game accurately predicted the sinking of the US fleet, I am sorry to say. (I mentioned the game above, sunk in 10 minutes)

Posted by: Walter | Nov 8 2019 12:21 utc | 84

error, reversed elements... Sulfer Hexaflouride SF6 is insulator gas

Posted by: Walter | Nov 8 2019 12:25 utc | 85

b, alerts expect there will be attempts at "More dirty tricks" and "Provocations"

Iranian Official Confirms Downing Foreign Drone Over Port in Persian Gulf

[.]Ghulam Reza Shariati, Governor of Khuzestan Province in which the Mahshahr port is located, told the media outlet Young Journalists Club that the country's military personnel are currently working on retrieving the remains of the downed drone. He added that the UAV "definitely" belongs to a foreign state and promised that the results of the probe into the aircraft will be made public.[.]

and more here:

Iran Front Page's Reza Khaasteh said, "Mahshahr is home to Iran's Petrochemical Special Economic Zone (Petzone), where a major part of the country's petchem plants are located."

A Lesson not learned.

Posted by: Likklemore | Nov 8 2019 13:00 utc | 86

Regardless of Trump's efficacy, it is patent that the very fact the American people elected a peaceful POTUS, who prefers to wage wars through economic sanctions in opposition to direct and massive military intervention is already a sign the USA is not the absolute superpower anymore.

If the USA still was the "lonely superpower", it would not bother to elect someone like Trump in the first place, and the division between the Russophobic and Sinophobic factions of the bourgeoisie wouldn't exist. Instead, the Americans would simply invade the World Island, crush Russia and China at the same time, and be done with it.

The very existence of a concept like the "maximum pressure" is already a sign of a new era.

Posted by: vk | Nov 8 2019 13:13 utc | 87

I think VK says true thing.

The drone down of today near/over petchem area suggests that the dark forces are contemplating ruining the petchem industry - which is essential to the isotope sep ...and the synthesis of nitrogen based fuels for rockets, etc.

Posted by: Walter | Nov 8 2019 13:21 utc | 88

the juxtaposition Iran/Empire minds me of classic fubar/zuswang

see yt The Treasure of the Sierra Madre (6/10) Movie CLIP - No Stinking Badges (1948)

Posted by: Walter | Nov 8 2019 13:26 utc | 89

How about “Pompasshole”? Has that already been coined? If not, I’d like to enter that as my official entry here at the bar.

Posted by: oglalla | Nov 8 2019 13:43 utc | 90

Trump's favorite move is a direct oil grab, as we see in Syria, where naked intent is finally showing. So far the diplomatic necessity for even the likes of Trump to pretend to some other intention has restrained him. Iran, I suspect, is where he cuts loose and 'goes for it'. Dirty tricks, though, could be used to set up the barest pretext.

Posted by: paul | Nov 8 2019 14:12 utc | 91

Time for U.S. to focus attention on Mexico and let M/E sort itself -out.
Maybe Guaido could be president of Mexico?

Posted by: jared | Nov 8 2019 15:27 utc | 92

..."Cockroaches appear to use just two pieces of information to decide where to go, namely how dark it is and how many other cockroaches there are"...

Checkmate information!

Posted by: Taffyboy | Nov 8 2019 15:27 utc | 93

I thought Macron's comment about NATO being "brain dead" was outstanding to the point where a host of people failed to get his point--Which nation is NATO's purported brain?

ptb--Need to examine other Permian operators as they are all having similar experiences.

m--Yes, the flaring is a massive waste and results from poor planning as methane is always present with oil which can be captured and sold, but these massive works like those at the Permian don't have a pipeline network to move the gas from wellhead to storage to a larger distribution pipe. Why? The drilling operations will only last a few years and the gas isn't mandated for capture, although as you saw on the charts at the article lots of gas is being mined and distributed from that region. IMO, fracking is the oil patch's equivalent of turning the ketchup bottle upside down so the last of its contents can easily be removed--high volume amounts at first followed by a trickle until done.

Posted by: karlof1 | Nov 8 2019 17:07 utc | 94

uncle tungsten @83:

enrichment hysteria is pointless in terms of the global uranium mining and enrichment game. But may primarily be driven by Israeli histrionics and paranoia plus a Trumpian perversion

Who will Trump keep his promise to?

Tea Party foot soldiers?

Repeal and replace Obamacare on day one
Nope. Quietly dropped coverage for prior conditions.

Build a Wall - and Mexico's gonna pay for it!

Not really. Building sectionss of a wall that USA will pay for.

Drain the swamp

Nope - unless by "swamp" Trump means the Democratic Party.

"Lock her up!"

Nope. He says they're good people who have been thru a lot. Aww...

End the "threat" from "Rocket man"?

End the Cold War

Nope. Increased military spending; ended treaties; militarized space.

End "forever wars", bring the troops home


Bring jobs home

Uncertain: trade War with China doesn't necessarily mean jobs coming back US.

= = = = = = = =

Republican Party?

Cut taxes

Cut regulations on business



Move Embassy to Jerusalem

Recognize Golan Heights as part of Israel?


End aid to Palestinians?


Don't give up on Syrian regime-change


US MIC, Netanyahu, MbS?

End US participation in the JCPOA

McCain: "bomb bomb bomb, bomb bomb Iran"

"locked and loaded"


Posted by: Jackrabbit | Nov 8 2019 17:20 utc | 95

We really don't want to start a war with Iran. Will Rodgers dictum applies here - if you teach a person or an animal a lesson in meanness, don't be surprised if they learn it.

Posted by: Jeff | Nov 8 2019 17:56 utc | 96

Assuming that Iran does get attacked, bombed, and assuming that the response does what it reasonably may - eg Saud and Is get wasted and the US fleet sinks and so forth - assuming all that, then who can stop the least two parties will have domestic imperatives to use them, eh?


Posted by: Walter | Nov 8 2019 18:59 utc | 97

Mr. D’Andrea, a chain-smoking convert to Islam, who comes with an outsize reputation and the track record to back it up: Perhaps no single C.I.A. official is more responsible for weakening Al Qaeda. what was the size of Al Qaeda pre 9/11 compared to today and how many countries did they operate in? Did he help arm Al Qaeda in Yemen, Syria, and Libya?

Posted by: Goldhoarder | Nov 8 2019 20:41 utc | 98

Another question. What does "weakening" Al Qaeda have to do with Persian Iran?

Posted by: Goldhoarder | Nov 8 2019 20:43 utc | 99

oglalla #90

How about “Pompasshole”? Has that already been coined? If not, I’d like to enter that as my official entry here at the bar.

Thanks, I like that. I immediately thought of flatulus minimus harking back to my earlier asterix comment.

On further research Pompus Pandejo perhaps Pompandejo if one were Spanish inclined.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Nov 8 2019 20:56 utc | 100

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