Just to follow up on my Thesaurus reading in the previous blog: you might think they were just "words," but it seems that Obama finally agreed to deem his pastor "forbidden fruit," a "contraband article." He "cracked down" on him, "placed him out of bounds," and "shut the door on" him in "disapproval," "giving thumbs down" before the pastor could do any more damage to his campaign than he already has. In short, Obama "excommunicated" the Reverend Wright to make sure, by "withdrawing permission" and "revoking" the relationship, that the pastor could no longer "clip" his wings or "cramp" his style. Hopefully, after this bit of juijitsu, there will be no further adventures in this very sad story.
Last autumn I stated (in a post called "The October-November Man") that Bush/Cheney were gearing up to start another war, this time with Iran. Bush had said, somewhat obliquely in this regard, referring to himself: "I'm an October-November man." Ultimately these seemed like they, too, might be just "words," floating loose, attached to no particular context. I waited and waited for the great orgasmic moment to occur. Autumn came and went, troops were moved back and forth, things heated up, reports were assessed, threats made--but the worst never happened. The phrase, however, has continued to haunt me.
Even Dan Schor this week said this week on NPR that he wondered exactly what the administration was up to with respect to Iran.
Just below my diving range, I knew the grenades were still in their pockets. I knew they were grinning in the dark somewhere with their plans. A crucial election is coming up this November, and Republicans are in serious trouble. They have lost two wars, broken the back of the economy, lied unconscionably to the American people. Things are really bad, but anyone who dares to come out of the shadows and say so is deemed full of crap or unpatriotic. Since we are going down anyway, let's show them once and for all who still carries the stick. Another October-November will be coming up. The following (edited) commentary appeared on antiwar.com this week.
[Before that, let me share a snippet from "Comix Nation" in The Nation, a cartoon strip entitled, "Americans Tell It Like It Is to the Iraqis":
The image shows an American in a red baseball cap chastising an Iraqi man, and the bubble over his head says, "We blew up your country, assaulted your people, and have perpetuated a state of chaos for five years. But we're beginning to lose patience with you."]
Is War With Iran Imminent?
This time, it's more than a rumor…
by Justin Raimondo
The shooting has already started in the Persian Gulf – and chances are we'll be at war with Iran before President Bush's term is up. An American ship under contract with the U.S. Navy – the Western Venture – claims it was in international waters when Iranian speedboats approached and failed to answer radio calls. Shots were fired on the American side. Iran denies the whole thing. Yet you'll recall that in the last incident, involving the capture of British sailors, the story about being in international waters was the same – except, it turns out, they weren't in international waters, but in disputed waters, just as we speculated in this space. There's no reason to expect anything different this time. Clearly, the U.S. and Britain are trying to trigger a new conflict with the most brazen provocations, and they don't really care how it happens – only that it does.
The indications of an imminent attack – the latest incident, the steady stream of accusations coming from the U.S. regarding Iranian influence in Iraq, the nuclear charade, etc. – have suddenly taken a more ominous turn with the recent statement of America's top military officer that the U.S. is weighing military action against Iran. The Washington Post reports:
"The nation's top military officer said yesterday that the Pentagon is planning for 'potential military courses of action' as one of several options against Iran, criticizing what he called the Tehran government's 'increasingly lethal and malign influence' in Iraq. Admiral Michael Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said a conflict with Iran would be 'extremely stressing' but not impossible for U.S. forces, pointing to reserve capabilities in the Navy and Air Force."...
The reasons for the uptick in the rhetorical and physical assault on Iran by the Americans are entirely due to domestic politics, not anything occurring on the ground in the region.
Hillary Clinton's demagogic threat to "obliterate" Iran, uttered on national television just before the Pennsylvania primary, was meant to buttress her newfound image as a shot-swilling macho up against the effete, Adlai Stevenson-esque Barack "Arugula" Obama. It's the Old Politics, trying to revive the red state-blue state dichotomy, and it's driving us down the road to war with Tehran. McCain, too, is helped by the ratcheting up of tensions in the Persian Gulf: think what the outbreak of war with Iran would do for his underdog candidacy....