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July 26, 2008

Regime Change Rationales


by Gordon Prather

Well, in times like these, you probably ought to read Pat Buchanan's latest book Churchill, Hitler and the Unnecessary War: How Britain Lost Its Empire and the West Lost the World. You certainly ought to check out Buchanan's interview about that book on Antiwar Radio.

Buchanan convincingly argues that the Brit guarantee to come to Poland's aid, in the event the Danzig Corridor crisis of 1939 could not be settled diplomatically, was absolute madness. And furthermore, many of the Brits in and out of His Majesty's Government at the time knew it was madness.

Why is Buchanan's documentation of the madness of the Brits – offering guarantees to Poland they need not have offered, had no reason to offer and could not honor – important, today, to you and yours?

Because, first the Clinton-Gore – and now the Bush-Cheney – administrations have already made similar guarantees to Poland as well as to Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Czech Republic, Hungary, Slovakia, Bulgaria, Romania and Slovenia. Worse, will soon make those guarantees to Georgia and Ukraine!

And – horror upon horrors – we have made similar guarantees to our "non-NATO allies," Israel and Pakistan.

If any of those countries are attacked – and if the paranoids running Israel, even feel threatened with attack – we are obliged to come immediately to their assistance, militarily.

Madness!

Why have we made all these guarantees, many of which – like the Brits – we are not capable of honoring? Or if not honored, would not involve hostilities that pose a threat to our national security, or involve our being deprived of materials essential to our national security.

Well, scroll back to 1992.

The Iraqi aggressors had been expelled from Kuwait, and the Security Council had passed UNSC Resolution 687, which, among other things, imposed sanctions, and required, as a condition for lifting the sanctions, the destruction – under supervision of a UN Special Commission – of all stockpiles of Iraqi chemical warfare and biological warfare agents and weapons, the means for producing them, as well as ballistic missiles for delivering them.

UNSCR 687 also required the destruction – under the supervision of the Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency – of the Iraqi nascent nuclear weapons program.

By 1998 the UN inspectors were reporting that Iraq no longer possessed chemical and biological weapons and delivery systems or a nuclear program, peaceful or otherwise. Therefore, most members of the Security Council wanted to lift the sanctions.

However, by then, Bill Clinton had gotten UNSC sanctions imposed on Afghanistan's Taliban and Serbia's Slobodan Milosevic and U.S. sanctions imposed on Iraq-Iran-Libya for human-rights violations.

So, in 1998, Clinton announced he would never allow sanctions to be lifted on Iraq so long as Saddam Hussein – the human rights abuser – was in power.

Oddly enough, the Bush-Cheney American Hegemony also required, but for very different reasons, regime change in the Islamic world, and the pushing of NATO eastward, to the walls of the Kremlin. So, under Bush-Cheney, the Clinton-Gore policies continued, at least superficially.

Then came September 11, and the rationale for implementing the Clinton-Gore plan in Iraq (as well as Iran, Libya, Afghanistan and newly independent states of the Soviet Union) changed from correcting "human rights abuses" to "fighting terrorism."

Hence, the Bush-Cheney rationale for regime change, according to then House Majority Whip Tom Delay:

"The war on terrorism will be fought here at home unless we summon the will to confront evil before it attacks. ... Only regime change can remove the danger from Saddam's weapons of mass destruction. Only by taking them out of his hands and destroying them can we be certain that terror weapons won't wind up in the hands of terrorists."

As Deputy Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz put it, "we settled on one issue – weapons of mass destruction – [in the hands of terrorists as the imputed reason for going to war with Iraq] because it was the one reason everyone could agree on."

In other words, "everyone" couldn't agree, then, to invade Iraq and depose Saddam Hussein solely because he wasn't nice to certain "humans," to certain major oil companies, or to certain Likudniks.

And, apparently, "everyone" hasn't been able to agree [up until now] to attack and depose the Mullahs in Iran solely because they aren't nice to certain "humans," to certain major oil companies, or to certain Likudniks.

But, that might be about to change. Eric Margolis, an expert on the Middle-East if ever there was one, reports that

"After a sea of lies and a tsunami of propaganda, the ugly truth behind the Iraq and Afghanistan wars finally emerged into full view this week."

"Four major western oil companies, Exxon, Mobil, Shell, BP and Total, are about to sign U.S.-brokered no-bid contracts with the U.S.-installed Baghdad regime to begin exploiting Iraq's oil fields. Saddam Hussein had kicked these firms out three decades ago when he nationalized Iraq's foreign-owned oil industry for the benefit of Iraq's national development. The Baghdad regime is turning back the clock.

"Meanwhile, according to Pakistani and Indian sources, Afghanistan just signed a major deal to launch a long-planned, 1680 km long pipeline project expected to cost $ 8 billion. If completed, the Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India pipeline (TAPI) will export gas and, later, oil from the Caspian Basin to Pakistan's coast where tankers will transport it to the west.

"In 1998, the Afghan anti-Communist movement Taliban and a western oil consortium led by the US firm UNOCAL signed a major pipeline deal. UNOCAL lavished money and attention on Taliban, flew a senior delegation to Texas, and also hired a minor Afghan official, one Hamid Karzai.

"Enter Osama bin Laden. He advised the unworldly Taliban leaders to reject the U.S. deal and got them to accept a better offer from an Argentine consortium, Bridas.

"Washington was furious and, according to some accounts, threatened Taliban with war.

"In early 2001, six or seven months before 9/11, Washington made the decision to invade Afghanistan, overthrow Taliban, and install a client regime that would build the energy pipelines."

Well, that tears it. But it does explain why Bush-Cheney-Rice are more than willing to destroy the Treaty on Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons nuke proliferation-prevention regime in order to put a stop to the rival Iran-Pakistan-India-China natural gas pipeline, which is currently scheduled to begin construction next year.

But it doesn't quite explain why we're committed to come to Lithuania's or Poland's assistance, militarily, if either decides to blockade or absorb the Province of Kaliningrad of the Russian Federation.


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Physicist James Gordon Prather has served as a policy implementing official for national security-related technical matters in the Federal Energy Agency, the Energy Research and Development Administration, the Department of Energy, the Office of the Secretary of Defense and the Department of the Army. Dr. Prather also served as legislative assistant for national security affairs to U.S. Sen. Henry Bellmon, R-Okla. -- ranking member of the Senate Budget Committee and member of the Senate Energy Committee and Appropriations Committee. Dr. Prather had earlier worked as a nuclear weapons physicist at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in California and Sandia National Laboratory in New Mexico.

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