As Iranians go to the polls to repudiate (it seems) some of the most pernicious aspects of Ahmadinejad’s rule, America’s Iran point man continues to make Ahmadinejad look like a reasonable peacenik.
The newly released book by Dennis Ross, President Obama’s special adviser on Iran, reads like a how-to manual for launching a war on Iran, marketing the war successfully, and making sure the Iranians cop all the blame for it. Ross will have none of Bush’s incompetent warmongering on flimsy pretenses of democracy and WMD’s; when Ross launches his illegal war on Iran, it will be stage-managed to within an inch of its life.
“Tougher policies – either militarily or meaningful containment – will be easier to sell internationally and domestically if we have diplomatically tried to resolve our differences with Iran in a serious and credible fashion,” writes Ross.
Note that there is no way to read this sentence but to see that the goal is to attack Iran. America trying to diplomatically resolve its differences with Iran is not a goal in itself; it is merely a means to more easily sell war and sanctions.
And, then, of course, we get the special Dennis Ross brand of peacemaking-as-warmongering—Ross’s signature dish: derailing negotiations while making it appear to be the other party’s fault.
“Such an approach may build pressures within Iran not to forgo the opportunity that has been presented, while also ensuring that the onus is put on Iran for creating a crisis and also for making conflict more likely.”
The goal, of course, is not just to bring about a military conflict, but also to make sure that it appears that it was the Iranians who brought about this conflict.
This is exactly what Ross did as “mediator” of the Palestinian-Israeli negotiations, where he used diplomacy to further the aims of Israeli colonialism, as a cover for Israeli colonialism. As Norman Finkelstein shows in his meticulous destruction of Ross’ previous book, it was Ross himself who derailed the Palestinian-Israeli negotiations.
Ross simply used his position as “mediator” to push for terms that were even more favorable to Israel than what the Israelis themselves wanted. During the negotiations, he became “furious” at Israelis for considering annexing less land in Palestine, and even said “if [Ehud] Barak offers anything more, I’ll be against this agreement.” The result was a “generous offer” on which then Israeli Foreign Minister Shlomo Ben-Ami himself commented: “if I were a Palestinian I would have rejected Camp David”.
But when the Palestinians rejected this offer, of course, it was a green light for “Israel’s Lawyer” to spend the last nine years blaming the Palestinians for rejecting his magnanimous offer. The result is a global green light for the Israeli regime to destroy the Palestinian people and their chances of ever attaining freedom—while placing the blame entirely on the Palestinians.
America can now look forward to seeing this mendacious brand of evil shaping their policy towards Iran over the coming years. Expect to continue to hear Ross talking about the failures of his heroic efforts at diplomacy, and then going on a WINEP-sponsored world tour blaming the Iranians for the conflict he worked so hard to precipitate.
This should leave no doubt that though the Obama Administration is mainly made up of sane humans who do not particularly want to nuke Iran, unreconstructed neocon fanatics like Ross will do all they can to bring about as bad an outcome as possible. Watch this space.