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speaking the truth « Previous | |Next »
January 21, 2005

I've been critical of Richard Armitage, the US Under Secretary of State, for his partisan interventions into Australian politics on behalf of the Howard Government during an election. But the man is leaving his post and is speaking his mind. So the Washington spin has been dropped and the mask taken off.

In an interview with Greg Sheridan in The Australian Armitage says:

I'm disappointed that Iraq hasn't turned out better. And that we weren't able to move forward more meaningfully in the Middle East peace process.The biggest regret is that we didn't stop 9/11. And then in the wake of 9/11, instead of redoubling what is our traditional export of hope and optimism we exported our fear and our anger. And presented a very intense and angry face to the world. I regret that a lot.
My my.

The US presented more than an intense and angry face. It also presented a very self-righteous fundamentalist one. The invasion and occupation of Iraq is the outcome of its unilateralism: a messy civil war, increasing Sunni and Shia fundamentalism, body bags and the rise of a defensive jihad around the world.

Will the unilateralism be toned down in Bush's second term? Isn't Iran being lined up?

Seymour Harris thinks so. More regime change of countries in the Middle East based on more fictions? What way will it be done in Iran? What we suspect is that the Bush administration has some sort of a plan about destabilizing, or even bringing about regime change, in Iran.

Ehsan Ahrari writing in Asia Times Online says that:

What hasn't been clear, however, is whether [the Bush addministration] would follow the Afghan model of a military campaign, or the Iraqi version of it. Considering the fact that the US military is innovative and prolific about coming up with sui generis campaigns for different military operations, chances are that if Washington indeed has plans for regime change in Iran, it might not follow either of the two preceding operations. That is why the recently published essay of Hersh about a potential US military action against Iran is read with considerable interest and attention worldwide.

Eshran says that it is necessary to factor Israel into the equation as the core of Israel's position is that no Middle Eastern country, save itself, has the right to possess nuclear weapons. He adds:
Israel is afraid that if a Middle Eastern country becomes a nuclear power, it could forever lose its freedom of action in the Middle East. The specifics of such a scenario are not important because Israel will do everything in its power, including preemptive attacks, to make sure that no Middle Eastern country ever develops nuclear weapons. The US, regardless of who is sitting in the White House, has no problem with such a frame of mind.

Richard Armitage is silent on all this, even though Washington would not rule out military action against Iran. US Vice-President Dick Cheney is not silent though.

Maybe in the next interview Armitage will engage in more truth telling to his friends. He could, for instance, acknowledge that it is legitimate for Australia to have an independent foreign policy. He could pause, then add that this option would be better for Australia's national interest than being a deputy sherriff of the US in Asia Pacific Rim.

Now that would be speaking the truth.

| Posted by Gary Sauer-Thompson at 2:21 AM | | Comments (0)