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Author Topic: Guardian suggests Iran attack time window, methods and target  (Read 2482 times)

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Offline kylieTopic starter

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Guardian suggests Iran attack time window, methods and target
« on: November 03, 2011, 04:06:12 AM »
So, article in the Guardian recently:  http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/nov/02/uk-military-iran-attack-nuclear

"  UK military steps up plans for Iran attack amid fresh nuclear fears

British officials consider contingency options to back up a possible US action as fears mount over Tehran's capability "


      I'm interested to hear what people make of the release and possible effects of the article itself.  I can't recall a print article that claimed so much about likelihood of a Western attack and details before the fact, since pre-Iraq invasion days.   I suppose there have been lots of murmurs from more dedicated areas, but it's striking to see in a more widely read press article.

What do people make out of the Guardian releasing this?  Where did it come from? 

    I'm curious, for exampe, what people in the UK assume about their leadership, or about the relationship between these media outlets and the government. 
  • Is this thought likely to be a centrally orchestrated leak / opinion feeler / warning to Iran even?
  • Could it be just aggressive journalism?
  • Or just to throw in another thought, partly guesswork in combining sources?

What do you think of this relatively detailed discussion of potential military action in a newspaper?

     This contrasts with, but also somewhat reminds me of the discussion of US action in Iraq in 2002-2003.  That swarmed over the news outlets for months.  To the extent I was able to follow it (being abroad), that was more a leadership-driven public campaign.  It's also curious to juxtapose this with say, Wikileaks "Cablegate" in both the earlier (redacted) and the later (more radical) forms. 
  • Does anyone think this is too much, or inappropriate for the Guardian to cover? 
    If so, where would you draw the line generally and say "now that's too much"?
  • Alternatively, is it lacking in some area such that you think they should have held onto parts of it, pending better coverage?
  • Or perhaps, is this more a natural outcome of current public domain and technical capabilities
    (extended diplomatic shuffle over possible conflict giving everyone plenty of time to research, drama hungry media, private intelligence companies, satellite photo outlets, wargaming as a rather focused hobby...) ?
  • Has your opinion changed because of previous international situations you can recall?
    Or has it changed somehow because this is "on the table" now with the world as it is?
« Last Edit: November 03, 2011, 04:09:09 AM by kylie »

Offline Callie Del Noire

Re: Guardian suggests Iran attack time window, methods and target
« Reply #1 on: November 03, 2011, 12:15:24 PM »
The timeline sounds reasonable and there is always the likelihood that the Iranian government would be able to repair or replace their equipment. I suspect china might have a hand in that though I think it was a bit short sighted that they did. 

It's fairly general in content so I don't see much coming of the article unless the Guardian follows up with more.

Offline gaggedLouise

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Re: Guardian suggests Iran attack time window, methods and target
« Reply #2 on: November 03, 2011, 10:48:26 PM »
It looks fairly loose in content, it wants to sound as if it had specific and highly reliable information about the game being set up: "now it's turning to red, guys! soon we will be taking off!" but most of it is speculation.from sources that can't be checked at all. Any foreign office, any major political party has some people who are going to want to spin their views to the news media on occasion. I think the article is merging news reporting and editorial; this is common these days but sloppy. It was very common, too, in the run-up to the Iraq war and for years after with anything concerning Iraq (and often, Iran). There is no way I would rely *only* on major newspapers to keep myself informed about what is happening in the Middle East - or, for that matter, in the EU games of chess.

Obviously the Guardian (its owners and board of editors) wants this kind of thing to happen and they are aiming to make it look inevitable or the only honourable thing. They may have some political insider connections, sure. Murdoch blatantly used his papers sometimes to back up Tony Blair and his decisions, and most probably to buy IOU:s from him. But the piece in the Guardian understates both the military difficulties and the vast human, political and economic costs this kind of attack could likely send both the US and Britain.
« Last Edit: November 03, 2011, 11:02:06 PM by gaggedLouise »

Offline Callie Del Noire

Re: Guardian suggests Iran attack time window, methods and target
« Reply #3 on: November 03, 2011, 11:01:50 PM »
I don't know about.. wanting, but they want to make it sound like there area trio of carriers in the gulf with complete battlegroups behind them all with orders to bomb the Iranian Military back into the stone age.

Offline Jacqueline

Re: Guardian suggests Iran attack time window, methods and target
« Reply #4 on: November 04, 2011, 06:05:23 AM »
I recently read that the NATO doesn’t intend to attack Iran because of its nuclear program. The article also mentioned that the NATO will support the international efforts to find politic and diplomatic solutions to the problem in Iran.

Offline gaggedLouise

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Re: Guardian suggests Iran attack time window, methods and target
« Reply #5 on: November 04, 2011, 07:22:45 AM »
I recently read that the NATO doesn’t intend to attack Iran because of its nuclear program. The article also mentioned that the NATO will support the international efforts to find politic and diplomatic solutions to the problem in Iran.

The US (and the UK) might do it without general support from NATO, just as in 2003. But the case for seeing it as self-defence, and the chances of selling it as such to ordinary people in town and country, would be a lot weaker than back then. It's mainly the neo-cons that would accept that Iran is a certified threat to world peace and represents a direct threat of fresh unprovoked attacks, acts of war towards the US, or the West in general.

It's more likely that Israel would try to do it on their own but I doubt they have the capacity to take out a whole range of different nuclear installations, some of which have been located very deep underground for years, and hit them all in one smash. Plus I don't think Obama and Clinton would give them a blank go-ahead: "sure, just do it as long as we don't have to be involved". If anything went wrong or there was retaliation, or solid reaction from let's say Egypt, the U.S. would *have* to get into the ring, diplomatically at least, and they would need to have a plan for that.
« Last Edit: November 04, 2011, 07:25:50 AM by gaggedLouise »

Offline Jacqueline

Re: Guardian suggests Iran attack time window, methods and target
« Reply #6 on: November 04, 2011, 07:58:12 AM »
I see! I really hope that everyone stays on the diplomatic and political channels.

Offline Zakharra

Re: Guardian suggests Iran attack time window, methods and target
« Reply #7 on: November 04, 2011, 11:18:49 AM »
The US (and the UK) might do it without general support from NATO, just as in 2003. But the case for seeing it as self-defence, and the chances of selling it as such to ordinary people in town and country, would be a lot weaker than back then. It's mainly the neo-cons that would accept that Iran is a certified threat to world peace and represents a direct threat of fresh unprovoked attacks, acts of war towards the US, or the West in general.

It's more likely that Israel would try to do it on their own but I doubt they have the capacity to take out a whole range of different nuclear installations, some of which have been located very deep underground for years, and hit them all in one smash. Plus I don't think Obama and Clinton would give them a blank go-ahead: "sure, just do it as long as we don't have to be involved". If anything went wrong or there was retaliation, or solid reaction from let's say Egypt, the U.S. would *have* to get into the ring, diplomatically at least, and they would need to have a plan for that.

 I think a lot of muslim nations in the middle East would quietly cheer Israel if they did take out, or try to take out the nuclear sites. Aside from idiots like Bashar (sp) in Syria, no one wants a nuclear armed Iran. Publicly they might decry it and probably would, but they know the threat Iran poses to the region.

Offline gaggedLouise

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Re: Guardian suggests Iran attack time window, methods and target
« Reply #8 on: November 04, 2011, 11:49:22 AM »
Just for the record: Nuclear technology is a top secret business in *any* country that's into it. It's not as if Iran is uniquely secretive about its nuclear research. Every country in the business treats the outlines, details and some key locations pretty much as state secrets, most of all those who are new to the game. Russia, France, Israel, India, the US are just as keen to keep a cloak of secrecy over vital parts of their nuclear studies and enrichment labs. It's just that their programs - aiming at civilian nuclear power, bombs, or both - are not as much in the news, though they are sometimes much more ambitious than what Iran might be up to.

I'm withholding judgment on whether Iran is actually preparing to build nuclear weapons, but it's useless to argue that "if they did have a clean bag they would have nothing to fear from showing it, so their secrecy and reluctance to offer full information seems to prove they are actually trying to build their own nukes." That's just wildly jumping to conclusions.

However , if they did acquire the ability to build two or three a-bombs in let's say five years from now, that would not suddenly give them a knife on everybody's jugular, not even in the Middle East and certainly not against Israel or the US. Israel has hundreds of nuclear loads in storage and they will know much more about how to handle them in war conditions than Iran could figure out in just a short time and with limited testing. And the Iranians know that if they tossed off one against an Israeli city or against targets in the Arabian Sea, they would have dozens of more powerful and sophisticated nuclear robots coming their way within the next twelve hours. Under those onditions they can't actually win a battle, at that point in time, by throwing in their few hypothetic nuclear bombs.
« Last Edit: November 04, 2011, 11:55:17 AM by gaggedLouise »

Offline DeMalachine

Re: Guardian suggests Iran attack time window, methods and target
« Reply #9 on: November 04, 2011, 12:02:03 PM »
I think a lot of muslim nations in the middle East would quietly cheer Israel if they did take out, or try to take out the nuclear sites. Aside from idiots like Bashar (sp) in Syria, no one wants a nuclear armed Iran. Publicly they might decry it and probably would, but they know the threat Iran poses to the region.

Hmmm. Personally, I wouldn't be so sure of that. After all, large sections of the populace in many of these countries still believe that the self-evidently fake Protocols of the Elders of Zion actually has some veracity...

Anti-semitism is so strong in those places that I think many would rather tolerate a belligerent Iran rather than see a major attack on it by a largely Jewish state.

Online Vekseid

Re: Guardian suggests Iran attack time window, methods and target
« Reply #10 on: November 04, 2011, 12:43:23 PM »
I think a lot of muslim nations in the middle East would quietly cheer Israel if they did take out, or try to take out the nuclear sites. Aside from idiots like Bashar (sp) in Syria, no one wants a nuclear armed Iran. Publicly they might decry it and probably would, but they know the threat Iran poses to the region.

You don't need to think about it. The cables Wikileaks released showed that this is exactly what is happening - in private, Arab leaders are begging the US to do something about Iran's nuclear program, while they publicly condemn our brinksmanship.


Offline DeMalachine

Re: Guardian suggests Iran attack time window, methods and target
« Reply #11 on: November 04, 2011, 12:47:22 PM »
^^Begging the US perhaps. As for Israel...hmmm, dunno about that.

Offline Callie Del Noire

Re: Guardian suggests Iran attack time window, methods and target
« Reply #12 on: November 04, 2011, 01:45:43 PM »
^^Begging the US perhaps. As for Israel...hmmm, dunno about that.

Given the concerns for a nuclear Iran? I think there are more than a few of the more moderate ones who would happily let the Israelis do it and publicly denoince them for after 'accidently' leaking info on facilities. The Wikileaks cables made it clear no one in the Gulf region wants a Nuclear Iran.

Offline DeMalachine

Re: Guardian suggests Iran attack time window, methods and target
« Reply #13 on: November 04, 2011, 01:59:05 PM »
^^I think the fact that Iran is a Shia nation would certainly prompt the leaders of the Sunni nations to believe that yes, a nuclear armed Iran cannot be allowed. And perhaps these leaders would think that a US led strike might just be about acceptable to the populations of their respective countries. But if there's one thing that can generally be counted on in uniting Shia and Sunni consensus, it's antipathy and outright hatred towards Israel in particular. True, it's possible that some middle-eastern leaders might be prepared to contemplate it. But even if they were to publicly decry it, I don't think any of them would be prepared to stir up a hornets nest of that magnitude.

Offline Callie Del Noire

Re: Guardian suggests Iran attack time window, methods and target
« Reply #14 on: November 04, 2011, 02:53:41 PM »
^^I think the fact that Iran is a Shia nation would certainly prompt the leaders of the Sunni nations to believe that yes, a nuclear armed Iran cannot be allowed. And perhaps these leaders would think that a US led strike might just be about acceptable to the populations of their respective countries. But if there's one thing that can generally be counted on in uniting Shia and Sunni consensus, it's antipathy and outright hatred towards Israel in particular. True, it's possible that some middle-eastern leaders might be prepared to contemplate it. But even if they were to publicly decry it, I don't think any of them would be prepared to stir up a hornets nest of that magnitude.

That might work for the population but the fact that the leaders of most of those countries are pragmatists. They know that if the current leadership of Iran would get the bomb that they would be in trouble. Iran already has strategic control of the gulf. They can easily destroy any ship coming or going through the straights. (assuming they are willing to the pay the price of the US and UK naval forces hitting them back).

With the threat to hit 'local' (ie Gulf targets with a Nuke) they could force the Gulf states to cut off support to foreign navies and with the addition of longer range missiles threaten portions of Europe and the Mediterranean states.

Don't forget they are a lot more comfortable with the idea of banditry/extortion than modern governments.

Offline DeMalachine

Re: Guardian suggests Iran attack time window, methods and target
« Reply #15 on: November 04, 2011, 03:14:54 PM »
^^It's a good point. And yeah, the leaders certainly are pragmatists - and I'm pretty sure they'll have have concluded that the events of the Arab Spring will have demonstrated only too well how vulnerable they would be if their populations got sparked by something. True, the main reason for the AS uprisings were down to desire for a more democracy and more accountable government. There is no reason to presume, however, that the main protagonists and supporters in these cases would have softened their stance to Israel, particularly over the Palestinian issue. Unfortunately, I can't recall any specifics, but I'm sure one of the emergent governments in one of these countries is Islamicist in nature, albeit one that's fairly centre-ground and certainly quite far removed from religious fundamentalism. I could be wrong on this point, of course, in not being 100% sure. Anyways...

To me, it looks as if most middle eastern leaders are caught between a rock and a hard place. Yep, they want Iran brought to heel. But by the same token, the potential for civil unrest would preclude them from seriously considering Israel as the power to do this. Religious/ethnic indenties still run too deeply in these places, despite the events of the Arab spring. I'd also wonder how much support such an idea would get from western leaders, considering the potential terrorist attacks that might arise from it.

Offline Callie Del Noire

Re: Guardian suggests Iran attack time window, methods and target
« Reply #16 on: November 04, 2011, 04:57:29 PM »
You're forgetting a very important point that a LOT of folks outside the Gulf forget.

Most of the opposing gulf states are ethnically Arab whereas Iran is majority Persian. There is a difference. Also Jordan and Saudi Arabia are a lot more invested in their citizens. They give out more benefits, education and such than most of the countries that went through the Arab Spring.

Offline elone

Re: Guardian suggests Iran attack time window, methods and target
« Reply #17 on: November 05, 2011, 01:35:37 AM »
Iran continually says that their nuclear programs are for peaceful purposes, ie. power generation and enrichment for medical purposes. Probably doubtful but if they were to develop nuclear weapons it would be to their benefit not just militarily, but to use as leverage. North Korea has shown us that the rest of the world would bend over backwards to try to keep them peaceful.

I think the rest of the nations in the middle east would prefer that no one has any nuclear weapons in the region. They greatly resent that Israel was somehow 'allowed' to have nukes because they never signed any non-proliferation agreements. That let them avoid any inspections and keep their programs secret for many years. Now, they could never risk war with Israel without the fear of annihilation. They don't want to see a similar situation with respect to Iran.

The last thing the world needs is an Israeli military strike on Iran. I doubt that they would roll over like Syria did, but Israel's military edge would triumph eventually, but not without casualties. I don't want the US drawn into any regional conflicts for Israel's sake.

As for the Guardian, I don't think they gave away anything that is not known to most people who follow events. Just a bunch of hypothetical situations.

Offline Zeitgeist

Re: Guardian suggests Iran attack time window, methods and target
« Reply #18 on: November 05, 2011, 10:30:14 AM »
Seems to me that the Guardian's story has credibility due to the numerous specifics it cites. But then again, none of this is sourced specifically, other than to say 'Defence sources say...". So in my opinion it has to be taken seriously, but with caution I think.

That said, it's all quite worrisome, especially when you add up the events of the Arab Spring, the Euro Zone Crisis, and the prospect of substantial Middle East conflict. Are we witnessing the early beginnings of a world wide war? Many of the same elements brought us to world conflict before.

The article cites the effective, if temporary, results of the Stuxnet virus, and I would also include the targeting of specific nuclear scientists. These things haven't had a last effect on stymieing Iran's nuclear ambitions but I would argue we need to continue such efforts, and ramp them up.

US developing technology to stop jamming in Iran

I found this video clip where Clinton talks about battling Iran's efforts to silence Internet traffic heartening. This, and more, we need to continue to do, and step efforts up. If outright military conflict ensues, we risk alienating an Iranian people who are both demographically young, and largely pro-Western. By showing we are making efforts to ensure their voices are heard we hopefully ingratiate ourselves to them. Which is no small thing, because the question that is always most difficult is, not can we defeat any particular military regime, but what comes after?

Offline DeMalachine

Re: Guardian suggests Iran attack time window, methods and target
« Reply #19 on: November 05, 2011, 11:00:02 AM »
...If outright military conflict ensues, we risk alienating an Iranian people who are both demographically young, and largely pro-Western. By showing we are making efforts to ensure their voices are heard we hopefully ingratiate ourselves to them. Which is no small thing, because the question that is always most difficult is, not can we defeat any particular military regime, but what comes after?

Blimey! - I'd forgotten the fact that there was an Iranian uprising at the start of the Arab spring (though most Iranians aren't arabs, I know), which was, alas, quashed quite forcefully by the ruling regime.

I wouldn't go quite so far as to say the younger demographic there are wholly pro-western. But they've certainly got a lot of antipathy towards their fundamentalist government, and clearly do want some more democracy in their country. I agree - it'd be pretty tragic if a western military intervention took their sympathies back to the mullahs.

Still, western intervention doesn't appear to have alienated the people of Libya, so who knows...

Offline Callie Del Noire

Re: Guardian suggests Iran attack time window, methods and target
« Reply #20 on: November 05, 2011, 11:45:20 AM »
Well I figure that Iran will stay where it is for a while longer. The Revolutionary Guard is still backing the Ayatollahs and they're still willing to put people to a wall and stone/shoot them. With companies like Samsung willing to sell them gear to backstop their efforts to black out the net and screen things out of the country's internet to interdict things like they did during the election.

When the Guard loses footing or the protects go beyond the cities..then they'll be stringing Ayatollahs by the turbans like they did way back in the early part of the last century.

Offline kylieTopic starter

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Re: Guardian suggests Iran attack time window, methods and target
« Reply #21 on: November 05, 2011, 08:49:29 PM »
     How about this...  We also have a report that anti-intervention Israeli ex-officials started this thread.  All couched in terms of the Guardian relating Kuwaiti press reporting:  That reporting itself suggesting activist attempts to use the news media to disrupt a military plan.   

Quote
Israel's prime minister has ordered an investigation into alleged leaks of plans to attack Iran's nuclear facilities, it has been reported.

According to the Kuwaiti newspaper al-Jarida, the main suspects are the former heads of the Mossad and the Shin Bet, respectively Israel's foreign and domestic intelligence agencies.

Netanyahu is said to believe that the two, Meir Dagan and Yuval Diskin, wanted to torpedo plans being drawn up by him and Ehud Barak, the defence minister, to hit Iranian nuclear sites. Tzipi Livni, leader of the opposition Kadima party, is also said to have been persuaded to attack Netanyahu for "adventurism" and "gambling with Israel's national interest". 

The paper suggested that the purpose of the leaks was to prevent an attack, which had moved from the stage of discussion to implementation. "Those who oppose the plan within the security establishment decided to leak it to the media and thwart the plan," it said.
Full article here.

There's some more references to these figures in NYT: 
http://www.nytimes.com/2011/11/04/world/middleeast/israel-is-scrambling-over-news-reports-of-seeking-iran-strike.html?_r=1&ref=nuclearprogram

So there are some names, if the last article wasn't "specific" enough?  The range of things that may be counted or discounted as "too revealing" for public consumption still befuddles and amazes me. 

     There may well be a blurring between editorial and activism and information here somewhere too.  Still, I don't see that there can be an easy agreement about precisely what is useful and what is manipulative.  Could this sort of media situation evolve in the US or UK and not cause some fervor?  I'm thinking last time, we had Valerie Plame among other specific figures. 

     I think given the amount of energy often put into deterring mention of things that perhaps 'lots of people already know,' it's kind of missing the forest for the trees to wait for the most dramatic paradigm cases like that.  By the time those can occur, get noticed and maybe even "resolved", all sorts of groundwork for managing information has already taken place.   

     What directions are ultimately served by our reading that Israeli insiders sought to restrain current Israeli plans by leaking, if that's the case? 

I happen to sympathize with that sort of strategy by concerned insiders...  But what do we have, now that it's reported in this way?  (And whether it's actually the case or not, to cover all the bases.)  I don't mean just what will the leadership eventually do or not, but what's the specific effect of articles like these, and perhaps of public opinion?

 
   
« Last Edit: November 05, 2011, 08:50:59 PM by kylie »

Offline Zeitgeist

Re: Guardian suggests Iran attack time window, methods and target
« Reply #22 on: November 07, 2011, 07:13:04 AM »

     What directions are ultimately served by our reading that Israeli insiders sought to restrain current Israeli plans by leaking, if that's the case? 

I happen to sympathize with that sort of strategy by concerned insiders...  But what do we have, now that it's reported in this way?  (And whether it's actually the case or not, to cover all the bases.)  I don't mean just what will the leadership eventually do or not, but what's the specific effect of articles like these, and perhaps of public opinion?
 
   

I think what you are asking, or raising, is: Was the article a trail balloon; is an Israeli preemptive attack on Iran something the world would find palatable? Or is this an effort by opposing internal Israeli politics to stymie the attack by ones in charge?

In either case above, what role and responsibility does the media have in being used in such a manner?

I know one thing. I cannot speak on the nuances of internal Israeli politics. Speculation is running wild within the media, and that is certainly not surprising. 

Offline kylieTopic starter

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Re: Guardian suggests Iran attack time window, methods and target
« Reply #23 on: November 10, 2011, 05:25:36 AM »
     I'm not fishing for a definitive answer on whether it was or wasn't a trial balloon.  I'm more thinking, what do we make of a situation where the media could be used as a trial balloon, or as a sort of preemptive reveal by people opposed to an attack.  Actually, those would both be trial balloons in my mind.  In one case, if it's really a test more than a confirmation, then the government wouldn't assume too much about which way people will react.  It would merely release the information in a way that seemed of manageable risk, or perhaps 'barely enough detail' to get people talking about how they should react.  In the other case, the parties behind the leak place their bets more that an important audience (is it "public opinion"?) would often oppose an attack too if the information were revealed just now.

     Arguably Wikileaks did much the same thing(s) in some respects.  They released a lot of information that either tests what people think of the management of American foreign policy, or (for certain points of view) draws out pronounced criticism of American policy or practices.  So to create some new subquestions...  Picking through some of the responses: 

1)          Is there really no "news" here?  We have a report of a short Israeli timeline (whether specified by leadership or inferred by outside observers) and window of opportunity for Israeli or US attacks on Iran.  By now, we also have an IAEA report indicting Iran for a weapons track, which means there is some claim to an ethical or legal case for an attack by rationale that Iran signed the NPT.  Does the weight and timeliness of the information not change when it's said to be about increasingly current and actual events?  Honestly, I'm kind of struggling to imagine what would be "news" if not.

2)          If the situation were reversed, would you be more concerned about the employment of news sites to get the message to us?  What if the paper argued that Iran, and not the US, will likely launch an attack within a year?  Would you say that should have appeared in the newspaper?  Would that seem more worthy of an editorial discussion about then what happens (in terms of military events), because the anticipated PR story calls for some physical Iranian provocation and not a "preemptive" Western attack?  Should newspapers not foster public talk about what a military confrontation would be like until the confrontation is already a hard fact to be reported, in either case?  Or, when should they start opening a forum where people may discuss such things?

3)         I'm gathering so far that there doesn't seem to be much surprise here at the Guardian covering this as a matter of course.  Yet we have some sources saying this was all a leak, and possibly a criminal leak according to current Israeli leadership, to begin with.  Now, when Wikileaks was releasing even redacted information without a government's formal support -- and I haven't heard many claims that it was a US-backed conspiracy -- well then, it seems to me there was a lot more discomfort expressed here.  Assuming that people are more comfortable with the Guardian releasing this than say Wikileaks or another designated "activist" organization, why are you more comfortable? 

4)          I'm feeling skeptical that most people would take time to judge a source based only on what it releases in any given document, or even through a long and systematic comparison to other sources available.  I think it has something more to do with the reputation we build up in our minds about sources of given types.  I keep thinking that if Wikileaks had produced much this same article, there would be a higher level of discomfort.  Would you assume that even the Guardian, which may be a fairly good example of a relatively liberal (if still modestly mainstream) press agency, remains beholden to either 1) government manipulation or 2) some more broadly defined national interest in a way that Wikileaks never was?  Also pick your country or region whose interests to be represented, as the Guardian is a British paper and if I'm not mistaken, also a private company with at least some transnational presence and not officially an arm of any government?  Alternatively:  Is there some other clear line between investigative journalism and activist releases of information that in itself would serve to make this mundane and innocuous? 

5)          Finally, however you answer those...  What does your view of the sourcing suggest about our ability as a public (or publics if you see great differences depending where you live) to gather useful information and to join a debate about what American policy vis-a-vis Iran should be?  For example, do you think we have any "good" sources to judge what's really happening such that we could have a public debate about it before the policy decisions have pretty much already been made and sold through whichever media they are sold through?  Could some of the very information needed for an informed public debate be tantamount to exposing the public/state to harm, no matter who reports it?  Are the media sources we use to become "informed" too easily manipulated by designating some info secret, and for that matter by designating certain matters as "off topic" (e.g. 'editorial' where only 'objective' is to be allowed)?

       
« Last Edit: November 10, 2011, 05:27:18 AM by kylie »

Offline Jacqueline

Re: Guardian suggests Iran attack time window, methods and target
« Reply #24 on: November 10, 2011, 05:38:56 AM »
On another article that I read yesterday Ahmadinejad says that the nuke charges are absurd. I'm copy pasting this.

The International Atomic Energy Agency’s report on Tuesday said Iran is working on nuclear weapons, but Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad refuses to hear it. He pledged Iran “won’t retreat one iota from the path it is going.” He then attacked the IAEA report as absurd, asking “Why are you ruining the prestige of the agency for absurd U.S. claims?” He insisted that Iran was not building nuclear weapons. "The Iranian nation is wise,” he said. “It won't build two bombs against 20,000 bombs you have.”