Immediately after Nikki Haley’s latest screed against Iran — standing Thursday before “Iranian” missile parts she said were from firings by the rebel Iran-supported Houthis in Yemen into Saudi Arabia — RT International asked Ray to comment. Having more than one flashback impression he had seen this picture before, Ray decided to take this opportunity to lend some perspective, and reasoned that he could think through what to say as he fought evening rush-hour traffic into DC. In two hours he was in studio for this 6:00 PM live segment on RT News.
A day later, choosing excerpts from Ray’s remarks, RT editors posted the following summary, adding some related reporting:
The US envoy to the UN, Nikki Haley, was dancing to Israel’s tune by calling for a Western coalition against Iran while posing in front of the wreckage of a missile, former CIA officer Ray McGovern told RT, saying the spectacle was aimed at distracting attention from Yemen.
“I think that Netanyahu is calling the shots. Look, Jerusalem has just been recognized as the capital of Israel, Nikki Haley is getting on this bandwagon. She sees this as being very propitious for her, politically,” McGovern said.
Describing Haley as “frightfully ambitious,” McGovern argued that if US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson had given her some guidance on the issue, he has not been very effective, as the US ambassador to the UN seems to be “following the kind of talking points that are originating not only in Washington, or in New York, but in Tel Aviv.”
Read more Saudi Arabia blames Iran for missile launched from Yemen, warns it could be considered ‘act of war’
The supposed proof provided by Haley of Iran’s alleged violation of the UN resolutions pales when compared to the scope of violations committed by US-backed Saudi Arabia, Iran’s archrival, McGovern said.
“It’s giving hypocrisy a bad name, when you look at the situation in Yemen, where the US supported Saudi attacks that indiscriminately killed so many civilians as opposed to this one rocket that was sent by the Houthis into Saudi Arabia to land whatever it might,” McGovern said.
“This is the time to beat the drums against Iran and the best thing they could find are some missile parts,” McGovern said, adding that while the missile might indeed have originated in Iran, it was used by Haley “to deflect a conversation from the fact that a million people in Yemen now have cholera, 70 percent of the Yemenis now depend on outside food to survive.”
The rocket might have been supplied to the Houthis “years ago,” he said, and the fact that it landed near a Riyadh airport on November 4 was a mere “piece of luck” for the rebels.
McGovern added that by focusing on Iran, Washington is trying to heal the wounds from its defeat in Syria, where it was effectively excluded from the settlement process, led by Russia, Iran and Turkey.
“Nikki Haley and Washington seem to be in an unreal world, largely because they have just lost big time. Syria – they lost. They lost to the Russians and the Syrians, and the Iranians, and Hezbollah. Now, what’s the proper reaction to that – the proper reaction would be too come back and reassess where we are,” McGovern suggested, but instead what he calls an “unholy alliance” of the US, Saudi Arabia and Israel “are out to put all kinds of pressure to Iran.”
Read more Houthis threaten to sink Saudi battleships & oil tankers unless Yemen blockade is lifted
While Haley said that the segments of a rocket she presented at a press conference on Thursday were “undeniable” evidence of Iran’s funneling weapons to Houthi rebels in violation of the UN-imposed embargo, the UN itself has so far been unable to confirm the link between Iran and the missiles.
The UN experts who traveled to Saudi Arabia to examine the wreckage of two rockets fired on July 22 and November 4 found that they had a “common origin” as they were both “consistent” with the diameter of Scud missiles, a variation of which is Qiam-1, made and designed in Iran, UN General Secretary Antonio Guterres said in a confidential report to the UN Security Council last week, seen by AFP and Reuters. Three components of the November 4 missile “bore the castings of a logo similar to that of the Shahid Bagheri Industrial Group,” he said. He then warned against jumping to conclusions, noting that the UN experts are still “carefully reviewing” the evidence.
Another confidential report presented to the UNSC by a group of independent experts monitoring the situation in Yemen last month argued that while the remains of four missiles that landed in Saudi Arabia appeared to show they had been made in Iran, it “as yet has no evidence of the broker or supplier.”
Iran itself has dismissed the allegations against it as “baseless and unfounded.”
Bowing to Israeli-Saudi desires, the Trump administration is abusing the U.S. intelligence process to whip up a war fever against Iran, much like George W. Bush did on Iraq, reports ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.
46 minutes NOTE: toward the end of the first minute, there is some static — a minor glitch lasting only a few seconds; one can just let the video play on.
The interview offers a poignant, gripping retrospective. Includes what happens to you, your family, and your colleagues when your superiors trash the Fourth Amendment, you blow the whistle to the Pentagon IG and word gets to the Department of Justice, which orders the FBI to raid your home early one morning — on what are known in advance to be false pretenses. That was ten years ago, but, clearly, the experience of being violated and betrayed persists.
The FBI, of course, was “just following orders.” A recent article about the Bureau’s actual record in “just following orders” helps put its behavior in some historical perspective. See:
The first and the final paragraphs of Doctorow’s speech appear below.
I am going to deliver a talk that will come in at 30 minutes in which I address in greater detail than you will find in the book the connection between the title question and the content of the book. To be more specific, I will explain why a book about the United States failing on the world stage deals so largely with what is happening in Russia.
…I would be content if the chances of accidental or intentional war between these two powers were vastly reduced. This is an objective which I believe is attainable fairly quickly.
The Neocons faulted the détente policy with trying to manage a relationship, a coexistence with the Soviet Union which they believed was the wrong goal, when the destruction of the Soviet Union was achievable. They were almost right. The Soviet Union collapsed, but of its own weight, due to its own contradictions and the failures of Mikhail Gorbachev’s economic policies.
However, the destruction of Russia, which is arguably the objective of US foreign policy today is unattainable, or comes at the price of collective suicide. The Russian economy is today very well managed by world class professionals. It is a typically European mixed social and market economy. Meanwhile, the broad population is mobilized around the leadership and quite patriotic. We have no choice but to manage relations and coexist with Russia as it is. …
Gilbert Doctorow is an independent political analyst based in Brussels. His latest book, Does the United States Have a Future? was published on 12 October 2017. Both paperback and e-book versions are available for purchase on www.amazon.com and all affiliated Amazon websites worldwide.
On December 7, 2017 Ray moderated an event at the NPC in which Gilbert Doctorow addressed the wider, Russia-related issues in his new book, Does America Have a Future? Gil is an American historian of Russia, whose academic and business credentials simply won’t quit — not to mention his accomplishments as an author, notably of Does Russia Have a Future (2015). Gil asked Ray not only to moderate but also to chime in at will. Ray found it difficult to avoid abusing the privilege; it all made for a lively Q&A.
Here is the video; the Q&A, begins at 1:05:10.
Rather than summarize his latest book, Doctorowexpanded on its most salient themes, referring the audience to a lengthy review of the book’s contents by Alexander Mercouris in “The Duran.”
The front-burner issues discussed in both collections of Doctorow’s essays, of course, are inextricably linked. His latest work guides us through the tug of war between the U.S. and Russia, highlighting the existential risk of armed confrontation — a risk played down in Western media by blocking out news from original Russian sources. Discussing the real risk of a nuclear exchange, Gil referred to Daniel Ellsberg’s new book The Doomsday Machine, which Ellsberg summarized last week in an excellent interview on “Democracy Now.”
Doctorow, a graduate of Harvard College with a PhD from Columbia, has been “banned in Boston,” so to speak — and in Manhattan, as well. Those who watch hisNPC presentation and the relaxed but pointed Q&A will find it easy to understand why.
Laugh heartily — but not too long. Some of the Russia-gate afficionados nourished by drinking drivel on RSM are likely to forward this report to similarly credulous friends lusting for more evidence of Trump’s “dalliance” with Putin. Borowitz’s finding is, after all, only a tad more fanciful than other such “evidence.” Please; someone remind RSM readers that the posting is satire.
Former UK Amb. Murray points out that Comedian and Radio host Randy Credico has been subpoenaed to testify to Congress “as the alleged go-between for Roger Stone and Julian Assange, on the brilliant grounds that he knows both of them.” Murray adds:
“I can tell you from certain knowledge this is absolute nonsense. … Where Russia fits into this mad conspiracy theory I have no idea. If I had any belief that it was the genuine intention of [Congress] or Special Counsel inquiries to discover the actual truth, I would be surprised they have never made any contact with me, as opposed to my fleeting houseguests. But, as I am well aware the last thing they want to know is the truth, I am not surprised in the least.”