Just Foreign Policy vs U.S. State Department Office of Propaganda

Yesterday, July 3, 2008, Robert Naiman of JustForeignPolicy.org posted a diary on DailyKos that meshed nicely with Jeffersons Bible’s essay, “Ignorance, Not Iran, Is the Enemy.”

Titled, “A Decent Respect for the Opinions of Mankind: Iran Literacy Quiz,” Naiman’s diary challenged readers to answer 11 questions about Iran, in these broad categories:

A. Have Iran’s leaders acted or declared their intentions to acquire nuclear weapons, arm and train Al Qaeda, destroy Israel, or “demand that God not inscribe the Zionist entity in the Book of Life.

B. Regarding nuclear weapons/nuclear enrichment, have Iran’s leaders declared that nuclear weapons are contrary to Islam; has Iran ever offered to negotiate nuclear matters with the West; do most Iranians support the notion that it is important for Iran to enrich uranium and reject the idea that Iran should pursue nuclear weapons?  

C. Who has what power in Iran’s government?

D. How has the U.S. behaved toward Iran in the past, were those behaviours legal or productive, and how is the U.S. behaving toward Iran today?  

Spoiler Alert:According to Naiman, here’s how Iran literati answer these questions:

A. Iran has repeatedly declared that it does NOT wish to develop nuclear weapons; there is no evidence that Iran trains Al Qaeda, rather, that would be contrary to Iran’s allegiances; Iran has never said it would attack Israel, other than in the event Israel attacks Iran first; and the stuff about the Book of Life is nonsense. In other words, all Category A. questions are correctly answered, False.

B.  All Category B. questions are correctly answered, True.

C.  In Iran’s complex governing system, Supreme Leader Khameini has ultimate power and authority over most decisions, including military and nuclear matters.  President Ahmadinejad does NOT have such power and authority.

D. Naiman summarised this complex category by referencing several short videos. His words are worth quoting, particularly since they contain an action item:

 10.  In 1953, the democratic government of Iran was overthrown in a coup organized by the US Central Intelligence Agency, after Iran’s parliament voted to nationalize the country’s oil sector, angering the British (cf. “jackboot,” above) who responded to the Iranian parliament’s action by imposing a naval blockade of the country to prevent it from exporting oil; just as today Representative Ackerman’s House Concurrent Resolution 362 seeks to prevent Iran from importing gas by “imposing stringent inspection requirements on all persons, vehicles, ships, planes, trains, and cargo entering or departing Iran,” suggesting a blockade, an act of war.  



True. On the US role in the coup, see, among others, the book by Stephen Kinzer; a short video tells the story here. The text of Ackerman’s resolution can be found [ here.] You can ask your Representative to oppose it here.

About a dozen people took Naiman’s quiz and posted their results in a poll; most respondants answered at least 85% of the questions accurately.

Take the leap:

On the other hand, James Glassman, ….Karen Hughes…. CSpan July 3, 2008….


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  1. History is repeating itself. The tactics being used now are essentially the same as they were in 1951. The goal is the same, regime change which will then allow us and our key supporters unfettered access to Iranian oil.

    It’s a team effort laid out by CFR and directed by Dick Cheney. With few exceptions Congress is on the team as are the establishment media with their continued amplification of lies and propaganda, and most of corporate America. Other key supporters are Great Britain (as in 1951) and France (Total would be cut in on a share the oil just as they were recently in Iraq).

    More on Res 362 – the latest tool for regime change:

    …the one issue that I do want to mention tonight is a resolution that is about to come to this floor if our suspicions are correct, after the July 4th holiday. And this bill will probably be brought up under suspension. It will be expected to be passed easily. It probably will be. And it is just more war propaganda, just more preparation to go to war against Iran.

    This resolution, H.J. Res 362 [listed as H. Con. Res 362 online] is a virtual war resolution. It is the declaration of tremendous sanctions, and boycotts and embargoes on the Iranians. It is very, very severe. Let me just read what is involved if this bill passes and what we’re telling the President what he must do:


    This demands that the President impose stringent inspection requirements on all persons, vehicles, ships, planes, trains and cargo entering or departing Iran, and prohibiting the international movement of all Iranian officials.

    This is unbelievable! This is closing down Iran. Where do we have this authority? Where do we get the moral authority? Where do we get the international legality for this? Where do we get the Constitutional authority for this? This is what we did for ten years before we went into Iraq. We starved children-50,000 individuals it was admitted probably died because of the sanctions on the Iraqis. They were incapable at the time of attacking us. And all the propaganda that was given for our need to go into Iraq was not true.


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