I am scheduled to talk with K.T. MacFarland of Fox News on her Defcon III show, today at 2:15. The subject is Pakistan, per my essay this week, “Blazing Saddles in Pakistan.”
Just missed it.
Will there be a link to it any time?
David, Moscow is thankful for higher oil prices on the news out of Iran this week. Spacibo Tel Aviv!
It occurs to me that Russia might be assisting in some of the fireworks in Iran. Qui bono?
Still no video link? Whatsup with dat?
Nyet comment. But they certainly may be loudly proclaiming their opposition to the Iran hostilities all the way to the bank. Syria is another matter.
I just attended a speech by Rannan Gissan in NJ the other night. He confirmed (reading between the lines of course) what I have long suspected….
First off…I am 1000% convinced that there is NO WAY IN HELL that Vladamir Putin, King of all Muslims, will allow a bunch of crazy Muslims to have nuclear weapons on his border. NO WAY! He obviously knows something no one else does about their capabilities. I also have no doubt, as I said before, that Russia was behind the Stuxnet virus’ instalation. Maybe the Israelis designed it, but no doubt a Russian installed it. Russia has been milking Iran for almost 30 years building that nuclear power plant. How long does it take to build a nuclear plant? Putin is the master politician of this generation. He knows how to play his hands perfectly. He uses Israel, US and Iran as pawn to suit his needs.
When I privately refered to Putin as “King of all Muslims” to Gissen, he immediately and instinctively said “he doesnt like the Muslims”. I said to him, “no but he UNDERSTANDS them better than anyone. He should open up an insitute to train all future Israeli and American leaders in how to deal with crazy Muslims”. No way he wants to see a nuclear Iran! NO WAY! Not that he wont milk the controversy. An Israeli bombing would do wonders for oil prices though. Even a threat is good for the oil prices!
Gissen also pretty much confirmed what Victor Katsav wrote in ATOL. The talk about bombing Iran is just talk to put the fear of God in everyone! Its VERY unlikely that it will happen. When Israel bombed Iraq there was no talk…just action. Gissen had a great comment. He said “There r things u do and u dont talk about; and there r things u talk about and u dont do! I think a lot of the Israeli noise being made is as a favor from Bibi to Putin. The more Israel complains about Iran, the more Russia can extort from the Iranians under the guise of “we r sticking up for u”!
And as far as saelling those S300 missiles. I think its more noise. If they sell them to the Iranians or Syrians they will just give the codes to stop them to the Israelis! Its a perfect drama. Bibi yells and screams at Putin for selling the weapons. The louder he screams, the more money Putin extorts from Iran! Then they both go back to Kreamlin and drink shots of Stoli together and laugh their heads off. THAT is my take on this scene!
Really looking forward to meeting u next week Spengler! Any confirmation if there will be books available for sale?
I am told that books will be available for sale, but as I am not personally in charge of the arrangements, Murphy’s law may apply. As for Russian intentions: one can only speculate, but it makes sense that Russia would not want nuclear weapons on its border. Why would they? I doubt Stuxnet is a Russian enterprise, but the Russians well may have assets on the ground in Iran. Russia policy is complex, though; they have an investment in Bashar Assad which they are churlishly insistent about protecting. There are many political as well as business cross-currents in Moscow which are extremely difficult to sort out from the outside. It’s the sort of problem that no matter how much attention I give to it, I won’t learn much of substance, so I tend to keep a distance.
So if the Russians dont want nuclear weapons in the hands of their crazy Muslim neighbors, why on earth would they not be more supportive of sanctions? Gissen actually addressed this as well in his talk. He had an interview on Russian TV that went as follows(and Im paraphrasing here)
He was asked about Russia’s not supporting sanctions on Iran. His response was something along the lines that maybe they dont support THESE SPECIFIC sanctions because they wont work. So when the interviewer asked him what sanctions would work he told them he cant say for sure. But they should ask their PRIME MINISTER because HE knows! Im paraphrasing here, but that was the general gist of what he said.
Their is a big drama going on here in my opinion. How else can u explain King Vladimir’s obstinance?
Agree with comment #4. Putin as a sympathizer with the Orthodox Christian Stolypinist tradition is hardly ever going to view Muslims as his blood brothers in some sort of anti-American alliance. Ditto for the Chinese. They’re all pieces on the board. Russia’s Ambassador to NATO Dmitry Rogozin in particular has been outspoken that he thinks America once it retreats from Afghanistan in humiliation will leave Russia holding the bag in Muslim Central Asia as heroin-trafficking extremists fan out into the Caucasus and try to overthrow Moscow and China-friendly autocracies in the ‘Stans (and the confluence of interests between the jihadis and certain geopoliticians’ Bzrezinskiites stated aims of suppressing Russia’s revival as a great power is what fuels Russian conspiracy theories, like the film Plan Kavkaz showing Turkish intelligence supporting future Beslan mass murderer Shamil Basayev as early as 1991-92).
I had hoped personally to see some humiliation of Washington’s VERY REAL anti-Russia/Cold War forever lobby by a very large Israeli-Russian arms deal, but alas it all must remain under the table or in media but never acknowledged in D.C. to save face for everyone. David certainly poked them with his ‘Americans Play Monopoly, Russians Play Chess’ and ‘Putin for President’ essays. But I understand the limits. Israel clearly will never jeopardize its relationship with Washington for Moscow, but certainly it enjoys hinting here and there that it has options if it gets pushed too far or if Washington’s economic weakness forces it into a shell. Think of it as a particularly dysfunctional marriage where the young, attractive bride likes to remind her older husband that he doesn’t own her and other men are drawn to her charms.
And indeed, some of the fierce Russian objections of late to the missile defense bases in Europe have to do with this being an election year AND Russia’s own MIC trying to build up new lines of biznis with the decline in the China arms trade. But there’s more at stake than arms deals for S-300s Israel knows how to disable at stake in Syria. It’s the idea that NATO can just overthrow any government it damn well pleases, any time, with the tried and true Libya formula, after the ‘peaceful’ regime change machine sputtered in Central Asia and was beaten back in Ukraine. To sit here and pretend that some of the same people involved in backing the Gas Princess Tymoshenko or Misha the Tie Eater aren’t up to their eyeballs in this ‘free Syrian army’ business is naive in the extreme. Washington has a regime change machine, and whether it’s McCain/Graham, CIA, Soros, or some combo of all of the above, Russia looks upon it as an enemy to be neutralized. It isn’t as if organizations like the Jamestown Foundation haven’t made their support for Caucasian separatism crystal clear. McCain’s bill to give the President legal authorization to lock up any American he damn well pleases anytime they’re designated a threat is a sign that these authoritarian tendencies expressed in warmongering abroad are coming home to the U.S. to roost.
On the flip side, many people around Panetta if not our SecDef himself are terrified of these automatic spending cuts coming down due to Congress’ inability to exercise any fiscal discipline whatsoever. So there are strong domestic considerations at work here. And agree with the other commenter that if Israel wanted to launch an all-out attack on Iran’s nuclear facilities they would have done so by now. Bushehr is indeed a cash cow that has been milked for all its worth for years and years.
Summary of Russia’s arms sales to Syria here:
Note this summary comes from an Australian oil and gas/minerals reporter who’s been in Moscow close to twenty years and is currently fighting to retain his visa status in the RF due to what he claims is retaliation from Rusal/Deripaska for his reporting. Even folks like that can be rather…skeptical…or Anglo-American and French intentions abroad.
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