Tuesday, January 31, 2012

India categorically rejects Iran oil sanctions, as Persian guile drives Israel crazy...

India categorically rejects Iran oil sanctions, as Persian guile drives Israel crazy...

Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee has set at rest firmly and authoritatively all speculative reports that India might buckle under American pressure and fall in line passively with the spirit of the United States’ sanctions against Iran by quietly cutting back its oil imports from Iran. That FM made the categorical statement while on a visit to the US is of added significance.

Earlier, ambassador to the US Nirupama Rao created some confusion by claiming India was cutting down its oil purchases from Iran as a considered decision. Rao was speaking after American politicians and commentators began making threatening noises as part of a psywar. According to media reports, she vaguely hinted that India was acting in tandem with Washington.
Of course, Mukherjee’s statement has hit the headlines, as it follows similar indications from China. With China and India defying the US’ sanctions regime, Japan and South Korea and other south-east Asian countries would follow suit. Tehran Times has reported that Delhi is actively exploring various options to work out a payment mechanism for India’s oil imports from Iran and is “trying to buy as much Iranian oil as possible.”
The Beijing daily Global Times featured an editorial today calling on China to coordinate with south and southeast Asian countries and “try its best to form a temporary alliance with them in continuing to buy oil from Iran. Such an alliance is possible, as seen from the hesitation of countries like Japan and India in sanctioning Iran.” The editorial anticipated that at some point Washington might even offer to Beijing some trade-off but China won’t cave in as Iran is far too important a relationship to compromise.
The GT editorial carries forward the train of thought that the paper fleshed out in an earlier article a fortnight ago when it inter alia called for coordinating with Russia - “the two should support each other in this [Iran] matter.”
India and China would also factor in that the European Union sanctions against Iran might not prove sustainable in any case. The panic in the European capitals was obvious when Iran threatened retaliation. Within hours, back channels were apparently activated to prevail upon Tehran not to go ahead with its own embargo on oil exports to Europe this week (six months before the EU sanctions will come into effect). It seems Tehran has obliged the European entreaties but its threat of retaliation hangs like the sword of Damocles on the European economies.
Clearly, the assumption that Iran will be brought to its knees through oil sanctions is flawed. Iran has successfully withstood 30 years of US sanctions. It is also wrong to caricature Iran as a chronic case of the so-called Dutch syndrome. Iran has a diverse economy, its human resources are very substantial and it can progress even with reduced oil income.
That is to say, all this drama is actually geopolitical. Evidently, Iran is keen not to exacerbate the tensions. The latest indications are that Tehran is constructively engaging the IAEA inspectors although holding fast to its principled position on the nuclear issue, namely, that it has every right to pursue a nuclear programme as stipulated under the NPT.
All things taken into account, therefore, Delhi has done exceedingly well by taking such a clear-cut stance on the entire question and its ramifications.

Persian guile drives Israel crazy...

I am not surprised that Hebrew indeed has a popular expression, ‘Hold me back’. It’s a convenient thing to say in a street fight when you tell the bystanders to hold you back so that you don’t hit the big chap in front of you who towers over you and can make pulp out of you if he chooses to.

Israel is a grandmaster in using this expression with perfect timing. Timing is important, because you know if it is articulated even a clutch of minutes too late, you are left with no option but to hit the big guy, which of course would have disastrous consequences. And, alternatively, if you don’t hit, you get badly exposed as the little guy who keeps pretending he is what he isn’t in actual prowess.
Predictably, Israel is once again reviving the ‘threat’ that it is about to attack Iran. Al Jazeera has a useful piece by the well-known American Jewish commentator M J Rosenberg giving the chronicle of such Israeli threats in current history. Of course, none of those threats in the recent years was carried out. Reason? It’s rather simple: Israeli military and security establishment is inhabited by cooly rational human beings who would know their country’s real military strengths and weaknesses and won’t allow themselves easily to get carried away by insane politicians.
So, why does Israel make a living out of making such hollow verbal threats? Actually, the threats aren’t that hollow, either. They have a greater logic and they serve a purpose. Israel is conveying a message to the political class in Washington : ‘Do something more on the Iran front’. In the present case, too, the timing is important. Nothing horrifies Israel more than the prospect of the negotiations resuming on the Iran nuclear issue. Israel is terrified of the spectre of the ‘5+1′ negotiations gaining traction. Derailing the diplomatic / political track is, in essence, the constant Israeli objective. Israel knows that the logical next steps of the diplomatic track would sooner rather than later bring the Iranian and American diplomats face to face.
So, Israel is resuming the plea, ‘Hold me back’. Read the hilarious AP dispatch conveying the desperate mood in Israel. The israeli war cry is already beginning to resonate in Washington. The folks on The Hill, who receive generous funding from the Israeli Lobby, are scurrying around seeking more action on Iran. Another set of US sanctions against Iran seems to be in the works.
The US administration has a problem on its hands. It also needs to pay heed to the warning by the influential Fox News that Iran could prove to be the ‘wild card’ in the 2012 presidential election. President Barack Obama knows this is going to be a tight race — unless Newt Gingrich manages to secure the Republican ticket and makes a fool of himself in the campaign in comparison with whom the incumbent president looks an infinitely better proposition.
The challenge facing Obama is to ride out the wave of the Israel-driven war hysteria and finesse it so as to garner political mileage out of it in the campaign, but without really having to go to a war with Iran (for which, Obama knows better than anyone else on the planet that America lacks the capacity or motivation). Ideally, Obama’s cause would have been well served if he had the option to go for a limited military strike against Iran — like Bill Clinton did by firing the odd cruise missiles at Kandahar from a safe distance — but it is a non-option today unless there is absolute, fool-proof, one hundred percent, verifiable guarantee that Tehran won’t retaliate, which of course is lacking.
Fortunately, Obama has a seasoned politician in defence secretary Leon Panetta. So, Panetta has taken over. He quickly revises his earlier opinion and now says Iran would have the capacity to make a bomb within an year if it indeed decides to have one and if that happens, and if the US intelligence gets evidence of Iran having a nuclear programme, then, he wouldn’t rule out exercising any option to prevent Iran on its track. Fair enough. It is a conjecture that doesn’t have to unduly upset Tehran. At the same time, he has not contradicted the Israelis although he may have poured a bit of water on their hysteria over Iran.
Meanwhile, Pentagon has dispatched more warships to the Persian Gulf. The great danger in this ongoing charade is that at some point without any of these able protagonists quite intending it, a spark may appear that may well escalate into an apocalyptic conflagration in no time.
The Israeli fear of having to live on a lonely planet isn’t without basis, though, given Iran’s savviness on the diplomatic front. Iran has complete mastery of the art of diplomacy and trusts its skills to serve the country’s core interests as far as possible. The post-2003 Iraqi saga is a brilliant example.
Unsurprisingly, Iran has already begun making good political capital out of the current visit by the IAEA inspectors to Tehran. The IAEA team includes two carefully hand-picked weapons inspectors who probably set out from Vienna with the brief to somehow put Tehran on the mat. But Iranian hosts are now pleading with them to extend their 3-day visit beyond January 30 so that they can visit even more nuclear installations and talk to the Iranian scientists and satisfy themselves there is no bomb-making programme.

Posted in Diplomacy, Politics. By M K Bhadrakumar

“I was personally present when the deputy economics minister of Iran was talking to a foreign society in Berlin”

“And the gentleman said very openly to the shocked audience ‘OK. You don’t want to buy our goods. Well, the Chinese do.’”—Christoph R. Horstel

Remember the real reason why Moammar Gadhafi is dead. He dared to propose and started creating an alternative currency to the world reserve U.S. Dollar. The lesson learned in Libya is now ready for teaching in Iran. Forget all the noise about going nuclear, the true message is that the banksters rule and nation states serve their ultimate masters.

The hype and disinformation that surrounds the push for war is best understood by examining the viewpoint of Iranian MP Kazem Jalali. The Tehran Times quotes him in saying,

“The European Union must be aware that it can never compel the Islamic Republic to succumb to their will and undermine the Iranian nation’s determination to achieve glory and independence, access modern technologies, and safeguard its rights, through the intensification of the pressure.”

“The European Union is seeking to politicize the atmosphere ahead of nuclear talks with Iran and is aware that sanctions on Iran’s oil exports cannot be implemented since the world is not limited to a number of European countries”

Many political commentators warn that an embargo is an act or war. Chris Floyd provides this observation of the recent oil embargo against Iran:

“This week, the warlords of the West took yet another step toward their long-desired war against Iran. (Open war, that is; their covert war has been going on for decades—via subversion, terrorism, and proxies like Saddam Hussein.) On Monday, the European Union obediently followed the dictates of its Washington masters by agreeing to impose an embargo on Iranian oil.

“The embargo bans all new oil contracts with Iran, and cuts off all existing deals after July. The embargo is accompanied by a freeze on all European assets of the Iranian central bank. In imposing these draconian measures on a country which is not at war with any nation, which has not invaded or attacked another nation in centuries, and which is developing a nuclear energy program that is not only entirely legal under international law but is also subject to the most stringent international inspection regime ever seen, the EU is “targeting the economic lifeline of the regime,” as one of its diplomats put it, with admirable candor.”

The most important aspect of the Iranian response lies in the way that changes oil settlement for delivery and the futile effect of the US/Anglo/EU imperialist dictates have in the marketplace.

Debkafile reports that India (and probably China) will pay for Iranian oil in gold:

“India and China take about one million barrels per day, or 40 percent of Iran’s total exports of 2.5 million bpd. Both are superpowers in terms of gold assets.

“By trading in gold, New Delhi and Beijing enable Tehran to bypass the upcoming freeze on its central bank’s assets and the oil embargo which the European Union’s foreign ministers agreed to impose Monday, Jan. 23. The EU currently buys around 20 percent of Iran’s oil exports.”

A more detailed analysis in Tehran Pushes to Ditch the US Dollar provided ample arguments that an embargo will fail:

“Iran may be isolated from the United States and Western Europe, but Tehran still has some pretty staunch allies. Iran and Venezuela are advancing $4 billion worth of joint projects, including a bank. India has pledged to continue buying Iranian oil because Tehran has been a great business partner for New Delhi, which struggles to make its payments. Greece opposed the EU sanctions because Iran was one of very few suppliers that had been letting the bankrupt Greeks buy oil on credit. South Korea and Japan are pleading for exemptions from the coming embargoes because they rely on Iranian oil. Economic ties between Russia and Iran are getting stronger every year.

“Then there’s China. Iran’s energy resources are a matter of national security for China, as Iran already supplies no less than 15% of China’s oil and natural gas. That makes Iran more important to China than Saudi Arabia is to the United States. Don’t expect China to heed the US and EU sanctions much—China will find a way around the sanctions in order to protect two-way trade between the nations, which currently stands at $30 billion and is expected to hit $50 billion in 2015. In fact, China will probably gain from the US and EU sanctions on Iran, as it will be able to buy oil and gas from Iran at depressed prices.”

So why is the EU so determined to apply restrictions is answered in the video, Why does the EU join in sanctions against Iran?

Now that is part of the reason but for the entire story, one needs to confront the contentions in the You Tube Israel pulling the strings for war with Iran.

Where is gets so confusing for the casual observer is that any discussion that deems to be critical of Israel is a taboo discussion in polite company. Well, when it comes to addressing the impending prospects of a major conflict in the Middle East, the linkage between the deciding influences in American policy that coincide with a greater Israel objective, is silenced in the old-line press and media. Therefore, the key element to explore is the relationship of Zionist interests with the fundamental preservation of the paper currency imperium of Federal Reserve notes as the medium of payment for oil.

Think about this equation in light of ultimate control. Oil is the fuel that runs the engine of all economies. Money is the medium of exchange that pays for the petroleum. War is the universal method used to avoid the breakdown of the money recycling system. In The Petro-Dollar and the EURO, the nature of this formula is probed:

“War is always about achieving a political end. Even holy wars seek to impose a secular control over the vanquished. At the root of every political conflict, lies the MONEY component. On the scale of greed or fear, international discords can slide up or down. Depending on the circumstances or demands, governments rally domestic populations to accept their foreign interventionist goals. Claims of altruistic liberation are fictitious, when the rhetoric is stripped away and the real substance is exposed. Notwithstanding, variances of emphasis; the motive of money underpins the movements of all military confrontations.”

Who can deny that the interest of the Israeli state advances under the Petro-Dollar system for oil payment? The prospect of allowing an oil exporter to do business paid in gold disrupts the balances that maintain an uneasy political rapprochement. Even more threatening to the globalist monopoly is a defiant regime like the Islamic Republic playing by different rules that bypass central banking approval.

It seems that the neocon Christian Zionists will never be happy until they institute a techno drone bombing campaign to shut off even more oil resources. With Iraqi and Libyan production in shambles, it is now time to eliminate the Iranian resource. Spiking oil to $200 or more through another foreign intervention just hikes the balance sheets of the oil traders and banking interests. There is no doubt that foreign aid to Israel will rise at even a higher amount.

The bonus is that the gold hordes of Iran would become the spoils of war and conveniently find their way into the storage vaults of the banksters. This is a sweet game as long as there is a continuous supply of gung ho mercenaries to push the button of terror from the skies. Moreover, sending boots on the ground serve an even more profitable hellhole, the War Party can demand a much higher budget, floated with even more debt bought by China with the proceeds from the oil supply that are secured from the export of Canadian shale oil.

Miraculously, this pattern builds an even larger, if not, greater empire. As long as new villains are found to master, the Iran’s of the world will become subjugated under the background music of God Bless America.

What fools our fellow citizens became somewhere in the last century. Remember the John D. Rockefeller quote: “Competition is a sin,” especially if IRAN is the player.

Body bags are made from petroleum base material. In the height of irony, the oil wars are fought to secure the substance to form the burial cloth for disposable soldiers. If America really wants to stand behind the troops, their genuine duty is to prevent and oppose the next Middle East war.

Iran is not an existential threat to the United States. Haaretz reports that former Mossad chief Meir Dagan said in a television interview, “If Israel attacks Iran, it will be dragged into a regional war.” According to Dagan, Iran, Hezbollah and Hamas will respond with massive rocket attacks on Israel. In that scenario, Syria may join in the fray, Dagan said on the television program “Uvda.” Dagan added that such a war would take a heavy toll in terms of loss of life and would paralyze life in Israel.”

An America First foreign policy cannot wage another banksters war.

SARTRE publishes Breaking All the Rules.

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