US Defence Secretary was grossly mistaken when he said “everywhere you turn, it is the policy of Iran to foment instability and chaos.” Robert Gates was apparently using the platform of Manama Dialogue to impress upon the six Gulf States that the greatest danger they are facing today is Tehran.
His unseemly defence of the real threat to peace in the region was not astonishing at all. The purpose of a well-thought-out witch-hunt launched by Washington against the Ahmadinejad Administration is to crush – by hook or by crook – Iran’s nuclear programme because it robs Israel of the status of the only nuclear-powered state in the region.
George Bush and his neo-con cohorts in the White House don’t want the world to believe what Nejad has been maintaining from day one that is Iran’s civilian nuclear project is to generate electricity and that the uranium is not being enriched to make weapons.
The Bush Administration’s lies about Iran have already been exposed by the US intelligence community report which said Iran halted a drive for atomic weapons in 2003. Years of statements by the Bushians accusing Tehran of actively seeking a nuclear bomb remind one of the preposterous rants Bush used to give while preparing the ground for the Iraq blitz.
First he inveigled the Americans into believing that Saddam was behind 9/11. When no link between Saddam and 9/11 could be established, Osama was blamed. Then he tried to create a connection between Saddam and Osama. Then came to the scene Saddam’s non-existent WMDs.
Chronic liars, it appears, comprise the Bush’s team. That is why the US president, who is blamed for over a million deaths in Afghanistan and Iraq, says Iran remains a threat and it is clear now that nothing can change his lopsided view.
His government’s unwavering support to the Jewish state will not let any peace effort succeed. Almost rejecting the assessment report, Bush said: “Iran was dangerous, Iran is dangerous and Iran will be dangerous if they have the knowledge necessary to make a nuclear weapon.” In October, Mr President raised the spectre of “World War III” or a “nuclear holocaust” if Iran obtained an atomic arsenal. It is time Bush realised that his lies and antics are not popular in this part of the world.
What he should be most concerned about is Israel’s occupation of Palestinian lands, crippling sanctions on besieged civilians, vile attacks on defenceless Palestinians, naked aggression against neighbours and cowardly airstrikes on popular leaders.
There are time-tested historic relations between the Gulf Arabs and Iran. The GCC nations have overtly expressed their support to Iran’s peaceful programme and there has also been an understanding that the Iranians would help the Gulf Arabs establish their own nuclear projects to be used for civilian purposes.
Minor differences notwithstanding, Ahmadinejad’s tough stance against Tel Aviv and Iran’s solid support to the Palestinian cause make him a popular statesman in the Arab and Muslim world.
If Gates was serious about maintaining peace in the Middle East, he should have discussed ways to contain Israel’s intransigence and bellicosity. He needs to be told that the US backing emboldens Israel to commit war crimes with impunity.
It was Israel which destroyed Iraq’s nuclear project years ago. And recently the Israelis attacked what the Jewish media claims a Syrian nuclear facility. Ehud Olmert has issued veiled threats to deal with Iran Israel way. The cancer of the Middle East continues to spread its tentacles causing tension in the region.
Gates ought to know that Iran has already come clean about its past nuclear ambitions. It never vowed to develop weapons of mass destruction in the future, but it reserves the right to hit back with full force in the face of any misadventure by Israel or its godfather across the Atlantic.