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Last Nation Standing ─ Iran

By not responding to decades of Israel’s provocations with an attack on Israeli soil, Iran displayed patience. The Islamic Republic rulers realized the provocations were becoming harsher, more damaging, and without stopping; it was time to respond. Their response was notable; a mild rebuke that showed power and unwillingness to harm civilians, unlike the offensive […]

The post Last Nation Standing ─ Iran first appeared on Dissident Voice.

By not responding to decades of Israel’s provocations with an attack on Israeli soil, Iran displayed patience. The Islamic Republic rulers realized the provocations were becoming harsher, more damaging, and without stopping; it was time to respond. Their response was notable; a mild rebuke that showed power and unwillingness to harm civilians, unlike the offensive attacks by Israel’s military and intelligence that have killed Iranian civilians and military personnel.

Israel’s worldwide propaganda mechanism omits the tens of previous illegal and damaging attacks inflicted upon Iran and charges Iran with cruel and threatening behavior that requires a strong reply. Already, members of England’s parliament (MP) obeyed the Zionist call for action with outrageous pleas to assist Israel against “Iran’s genocidal actions,” and “attempt to interrupt the peace.”

One person is injured and that is genocide. Tens of thousands of Gazans killed and no reference to genocide. Mayhem in the Middle East since the first Zionist set foot in Palestine and one relatively harmless attack disturbed the peace. Are these MPs real people or artificial intelligence? How can they run for office and be elected?

A common thread exists in US actions of aggressive behavior toward nations that have not threatened the security of the United States, such as 21st-century Iraq and Iran. The common thread weaves nations that were or are antagonists of apartheid Israel. All, except Iran, have been subdued by the U.S. What Israel wants, Israel gets, and Israel convinced the United States to eliminate the foes of the Zionist Republic. Americans died and Americans paid for efforts that had scarce benefits to U.S. citizens. Iran is now the last nation standing and Israel is coercing the U.S. to perform its usual duty — get rid of Iran. Look at the record.


Deposed Sudan leader, Omar al-Bashir, made it clear. “Israel is our enemy, our number one enemy, and we will continue calling Israel our enemy.” Israel also made its relationship with Bahir clear by destroying a Sudanese arms factory suspected of producing chemical weapons for Hamas. Times of Israel reports that “Over the years, there have been reports of the Israelis continuing to aid South Sudanese rebels during Sudan’s second civil war, which lasted from 1983 to 2005.” Israel’s assistance to the rebels enabled South Sudan to secede and weaken Bashir. The Times of Israel also reports that “Miniature Israeli flags hang from car windshields and flutter at roadside stalls, and at the Juba souk in the city’s downtown, you can buy lapel pins with the Israeli flag alongside its black, red and green South Sudanese counterpart.”

Link of a car bomb at the World Trade Center in New York to Osama bin Laden, who resided in Sudan, prompted the US State Department to add Sudan to its list of state sponsors of terrorism. In October 1997, the U.S. imposed economic, trade, and financial sanctions on Sudan. These sanctions occurred despite none of the extremists engaging in terrorist activities while in Sudan. Bashir offered extradition or interviews of arrested al-Qaeda operatives and allowed access to the extensive files of Sudanese intelligence. According to a CIA source, reported in the Guardian, Sept 30, 2001, “This represents the worst single intelligence failure in this whole terrible business. It is the key to the whole thing right now. It is reasonable to say that had we had this data we may have had a better chance of preventing the attacks.”

The U.S. Congress heightened the insurrection in Sudan’s Darfur province by passing amendment H.Con.Res.467 — 108th Congress (2003-2004), amended 07/22/2004, which “States that Congress declares that the atrocities unfolding in Darfur, Sudan, are genocide, and urges the Administration to refer to such atrocities as genocide.” The amendment gathered world opinion against the Sudanese government. Although the public accepted the figure of 400,000 killings of people in Darfur, this genocide had no verification of the number of killings, no displayed mass graves, and no images of a great number of bodies.

Before he left the U.S. State Department, former US Deputy Secretary of State Robert Zoellick stated on ABC News online, November 9, 2005, “It’s a tribal war. And frankly I don’t think foreign forces want to get in the middle of a tribal war of Sudanese.”

A peace agreement ended the second Sudanese civil war in 2005. On July 9, 2011, South Sudan became independent and reduced Sudan to a pipeline for South Sudan oil. After Sudan became a diminished state, barely able to survive, the United States lifted economic and trade sanctions. Independent South Sudan fared worse — involved in its civil war, human rights violations, and social and economic turmoil. Human Rights Watch (HRW) claimed [South Sudan] “Government security forces and armed groups perpetrated serious human rights abuses, including killings, acts of sexual violence, abductions, detention, torture and other ill-treatment, the recruitment and use of children, and destruction of civilian property.” The U.S. government did not criticize the human rights violations of the friend of Israel.

On October 23, 2020, Israel and Sudan agreed to normalize relations
On April 6, 2021, the Sudanese cabinet approved a bill abolishing the 1958 law on boycotting Israel.

The once wealthy Sudan, flowing with minerals and gushing with oil had the possibility of becoming a strong and vibrant African nation. US policies of countering terrorism, assisting South Sudan rebels, and interfering in the Darfur civil war contributed to preventing that outcome and provided Israel with a friendly Sudan that no longer assisted the Palestinians.


Libya’s leader, Mohammar Qadhafi, has been quoted as saying on April 1, 2002, “Thousands of Libyans are ready to defend the Palestinian people.” In that speech he called for a Pan-Arab war against the state of Israel’s existence and demanded “other Arab leaders open their borders to allow Libyans to march into Palestine, to join the Palestinian uprising.” In the speech, Gaddafi claimed he would not recognize Israel as a state.

The United States used Gadhafi’s support for radical revolutions as a reason to have strained relations with Libya. Sanctions soon followed. In March 1982, the U.S. Government prohibited imports of Libyan crude oil into the United States and expanded the controls on U.S. originated goods intended for export to Libya. Licenses were required for all transactions, except food and medicine. In April 1985, all Export-Import Bank financing was prohibited.

On April 14, 1986, the United States launched air strikes against Libya in retaliation for “Libyan sponsorship of terrorism against American troops and citizens.” Five military targets and “terrorism centers” were hit, including Gadhafi’s headquarters.

After Libya halted its nuclear program, renounced terrorism, accepted responsibility for inappropriate actions by its officials, and paid appropriate compensation to the victims’ families for the bombing of a US commercial airplane over Lockerbie, Scotland, the United Nations (UN) lifted sanctions, the U.S. terminated the applicability of the Iran and Libya Sanctions Act to Libya, and President Bush signed an Executive Order terminating the national emergency, which ended economic sanctions.  All was going well until 2011.

Despite the lack of clarity of the 2011 rebellion against Gadhafi and specious reasons for NATO and US roles to defend the rebels, the U.S. government cut ties with the Gadhafi regime, sanctioned senior regime members, and, together with several European and Arab nations, managed to convince the UN Security Council to authorize intervention in the conflict. The intervention demolished the Gadhafi regime and enabled the rebels to obtain victory, another fallen nation that was an outspoken antagonist of Israel, and, still, in 2024, an embattled nation.


On October 6, 1973, Egypt and Syria launched a surprise attack on Israel to reclaim territories they had lost in the Six-Day War. With Israeli troops seriously outnumbered and facing near-certain defeat at the hands of the Soviet-backed nations, President Nixon ordered an emergency airlift of supplies and materiel. “Send everything that will fly,” Nixon told Henry Kissinger. The American airlift enabled Israel to launch a decisive counterattack that pushed the Egyptians back across the Suez Canal.

In a briefing,  Scuttle Diplomacy: Henry Kissinger and Arab-Israeli Peacemaking, by Salim Yaqub, Woodrow Wilson Center, Dr. Yaqub argued that “Kissinger’s pivotal role as the intermediary allowed him to feign neutrality while secretly supporting the Israelis, and to turn the peace negotiations into a long series of small confidence building steps which would give the appearance of progress that Egypt required to come to an agreement with Israel, but which would allow Israel to keep most of the Syrian and Palestinian land gained after the 1967 Six-Day War.”

Prime Minister of Egypt, Anwar Sadat, signed a peace treaty with Israel, and the U.S. normalized relations with previously combative Egypt. The most populous and leading nation of the Arab world, the principal defender of Arab rights, which had waged several wars with Israel, no longer posed a threat to Israel and became a weakened observer to the hostilities affecting the Middle East.


Israel and Syria battled from day one of the UN 181 Proclamation that recommended partition of the British Mandate.

The U.S. never favored the Assad regime and cut relations. After the September 11, 2001 attacks on U.S. soil, the Syrian Government tried limited cooperation with the U.S. War on Terror. Syrian intelligence alerted the U.S. of an Al-Qaeda plan to fly a hang glider loaded with explosives into the U.S. Navy’s Fifth Fleet headquarters in Bahrain. Syria was also a destination for U.S. captives outside of its borders in its rendition program. According to U.S. officials, as reported by Nicholas Blanford, in a Special to The Christian Science Monitor, May 14, 2002, ”Syrian information was instrumental in catching militant Islamists around the world.”

Syria’s descent into near oblivion started with its civil wars, in which foreign fighters (ISIS and al-Nusra) entered Syria from NATO’s Turkey (no retribution to Turkey for allowing ISIS to enter Syria), and a multitude of insurgents fought with and against one another until Assad, with assistance from Russia, Iran, and Hezbollah, overcame the insurgencies. WikiLeaks, in 2011, released diplomatic cables between the U.S. embassy in Damascus and the State Department, which revealed the U.S. had given financial support to political opposition groups and their related projects through September 2010.

ISIS is defeated and a limping Assad government barely survives as a splintered nation. Bombed almost daily by Israeli missiles and planes, the hopelessly weak Syria cannot retaliate. With assistance from the U.S., Syria’s threat to Israel has been neutralized.


Justifying the U.S. invasion of Iraq with a spurious reason that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction and needed to be silenced was so absurd that another reason was sought. Security school scholars argued a joint threat of Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction and links to terrorist groups. Hegemony school scholars argued preservation and extension of U.S. hegemony, including the spread of liberal democratic ideals. When in doubt bring in liberal democratic ideals.

The interventionists conveniently forgot that Saddam Hussein was a restraint to Iran and a deterrent to Radical Islamists. With Hussein removed, Iran lost its restraint. Bordering on Iraq and spiritually attached to Iraq’s Shi’a population, Iran became involved in the commercial, economic, and political future of Iraq, an event that U.S. strategists should have known.

The invasion of Iraq and disposal of a Saddam Hussein regime, which had prevented al-Qaeda elements from establishing themselves, exposed Iraq’s porous borders to Radical Islamic fighters. Founded in October 2004, al-Qaeda in Iraq (AQI) emerged from a transnational terrorist group created and led by Abu Musab al-Zarqawi. His cohorts entered through Jordan, while al-Qaeda forced out of Waziristan in Pakistan found a haven in Iraq. Meanwhile, fighters trained in and wandering through the deserts of Saudi Arabia hopped planes to Istanbul and Damascus and worked their way across Syria into Iraq. Disturbed by the U.S. invasion and military tactics, Ibrahim Awwad Ibrahim al-Badri al-Samarrai, later known as Al Baghdadi, founder of the Islamic Caliphate, transformed himself from a fun-loving soccer player into a hardened militant and helped found the militant group Jamaat Jaysh Ahl al-Sunnah wa-l-Jamaah (JJASJ), which countered the U.S. military in Iraq.

Spurious reasons and obvious counterproductive results leave doubts that the original explanation and rationales for the invasion were correct. A more valid reason involves the neocons in the Bush administration who were closely identified with Israel in the Pentagon, Paul Wolfowitz and Douglas Feith, and the office of the vice president, Lewis ‘Scooter’ Libby, who aggressively advanced the case for the invasion. Some backups to that theory,

Haaretz, Apr 03, 2003, “White Man’s Burden,” Ari Shavit, “The war in Iraq was conceived by 25 neoconservative intellectuals, most of them Jewish (ED: Avid Israel supporters), who were pushing President Bush to change the course of history.”

In The Road to Iraq: The Making of a Neoconservative War, Muhammad Idrees Ahmad echoes the case.

The road to Iraq was paved with neoconservative intentions. Other factions of the US foreign policy establishment were eventually brought around to supporting the war, but the neocons were its architects and chief proponents.

Ahmad quotes a remark attributed to British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw. “It’s a toss-up whether Libby is working for the Israelis or the Americans on any given day.” He also quotes former New Republic editor Andrew Sullivan who contended, “The closer you examine it, the clearer it is that neoconservatism, in large part, is simply about enabling the most irredentist elements in Israel and sustaining a permanent war against anyone or any country who disagrees with the Israeli right.”

A 1996 report, Clean Break, A New Strategy for Securing the Realm, prepared by neoconservatives at the Jerusalem-based think tank, Institute for Advanced Strategic and Political Studies, many of whom held vital positions in the George W. Bush administration, lends substance to the charge that the invasion of Iraq served Israel’s interests.

We must distinguish soberly and clearly friend from foe. We must make sure that our friends across the Middle East never doubt the solidity or value of our friendship….Israel can shape its strategic environment, in cooperation with Turkey and Jordan, by weakening, containing, and even rolling back Syria. This effort can focus on removing Saddam Hussein from power in Iraq — an important Israeli strategic objective in its own right — as a means of foiling Syria’s regional ambitions.

Israel can make a clean break from the past and establish a new vision for the U.S.-Israeli partnership based on self-reliance, maturity and mutuality — not one focused narrowly on territorial disputes. Israel’s new strategy — based on a shared philosophy of peace through strength — reflects continuity with Western values by stressing that Israel is self-reliant, does not need U.S. troops in any capacity to defend it, including on the Golan Heights, and can manage its own affairs. Such self-reliance will grant Israel greater freedom of action and remove a significant lever of pressure used against it in the past.

Participants in the Study Group included Richard Perle, American Enterprise Institute, Study Group Leader, James Colbert, Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs, Charles Fairbanks, Jr., Johns Hopkins University/SAIS, Douglas Feith, Feith and Zell Associates, Robert Loewenberg, President, Institute for Advanced Strategic and Political Studies, Jonathan Torop, The Washington Institute for Near East Policy, David Wurmser, Institute for Advanced Strategic and Political Studies, and Meyrav Wurmser, Johns Hopkins University.

Richard Perle, Douglas Feith, and David Wurmser later served in high positions in the George W. Bush administration at the time of the Iraq invasion. The others were allied with organizations that promoted Israel’s interests.

Two observations:
(1)    Why were Americans prominent in an Israeli Think Tank and why were they advising a foreign nation?
(2)    Note that the thrust of the report is to advise Israel to have a “clean break from the past and establish a new vision for the U.S.-Israeli partnership based on self-reliance, maturity, and mutuality.” This has been the modus operandi of the Netanyahu administrations.

Another ember that warmed the neocon’s heartfelt devotion to Israel; The Project for the New American Century urged an invasion of Iraq throughout the Clinton years. “Bombing Iraq Isn’t enough. Saddam Hussein must go,” William Kristol and Robert Kagan, PNAC neocon directors wrote in the 1998 New York Times.

No “smoking gun” firmly ties the neocons devoted to Israel together with using the United States military to eliminate another Israel antagonist. The argument is based upon it being the best, most factual, and only reason the war could have been wanted.

Iran – Last Nation Standing

The Islamic Republic may not be an exemplary nation, but there is no evidence or reason for the U.S. accusations that Iran is a destabilizing, expansionist nation, or leading sponsor of international terrorism. Why would it be – there are no external resources or land masses that would be helpful to Iran’s economy, Iran has not invaded any nation, and its few sea and drone attacks on others are reactions from a perception that others have colluded in harming the Islamic Republic and its allies. Ayatollah Khomeini’s vision of expanding his social ideology never got anywhere and died with him. Subsequent leaders have been forced to reach out to defend their interests and those of their friends, but none of these leaders has pursued an expansionist philosophy or wants the burden that accompanies the task — enough problems at home.

No matter what Iran does, the US perceives Iran as an enemy and a threat to not only the Middle East but to world order. All this hostility, despite the facts that (1) the Iranians showed willingness to create a new Afghanistan by pledging $560 million worth of assistance, almost equal to the amount that the United States pledged at the Tokyo donors’ conference in January 2002, (2) according to the U.S. envoy to Afghanistan, Richard Dobbins, played a “decisive role in persuading the Northern Alliance delegation to compromise its demands of wanting 60 percent of the portfolios in an interim government,” (3) Iran arrested Al-Qaeda agents on its territory and, because Al-Qaeda linked the Shiite Muslims, represented by Iran and Hezbollah, with Crusaders, Zionists, and Jews as its most bitter enemies, had ample reason to combat terrorist organizations, and (4) Iran has no reason for or capability of attacking the U.S .or its western allies.

Being vilified for inadequate reasons is followed by Iran not being praised for significant reasons. President Trump, in his January 8, 2020 speech, argued the U.S. had been responsible for defeating ISIS and the Islamic Republic should realize that it is in their benefit to work with the United States in making sure ISIS remains defeated. Trade the U.S. with Iran and Trump’s speech would be correct.

The U.S. spent years and billions of dollars in training an Iraqi army that fled Mosul and left it to a small contingent of ISIS forces. Showing no will and expertise to fight, Iraq’s debilitated military permitted ISIS to rapidly expand and conquer Tikrit and other cities. Events energized Iraq’s Popular Mobilization Forces, which, with cooperation from Iran and leadership from its Major General Qasem Soleimani, recaptured Tikrit and Ramadi, pushed ISIS out of Fallujah, and played a leading role in ISIS’ defeat at Mosul. Iran and Soleimani were key elements in the defeat of ISIS.

What reward did Solemani receive for his efforts? When his convoy left Baghdad airport, a drone strike, perpetrated by U.S. military, assassinated Major General Solemani and nine other innocent people on January 3, 2002. UN’s special rapporteur on extrajudicial killings, Agnes Callamard, reported the U.S. had not provided sufficient evidence of an imminent threat to life to justify the attack.

As usual, Israel used the U.S. to satisfy its desires. “Israel was going to do this with us, and it was being planned and working on it for months,” President Trump said about the coordination to kill Gen. Qassem Soleimani, the head of Iran’s Quds Force. “We had everything all set to go, and the night before it happened, I got a call that Israel will not be participating in this attack. I’ll never forget that Bibi Netanyahu let us down. We were disappointed by that. Very disappointed…But we did the job ourselves, with absolute precision … and then Bibi tried to take credit for it.”

Why do these protectors of the realm want Iran destroyed — they fear Iran may act as a deterrent to their future aggression. Iran cannot win a war with a nuclear weapon or any weapons; it can only posture and threaten use of nuclear weapons as a deterrent. Its principal antagonists, Israel, United States, and Saudi Arabia have elements that shield themselves from a nuclear attack by Iran. Israel’s small size makes it likely that fallout from a nuclear weapon will endanger the entire region, especially Iran’s allies. Any nuclear strike on Israel will be countered with a torrent of nuclear missiles that will completely wipe large Iran off the map and without fallout causing harm to neighboring nations. With little to gain and everything to lose, why would Iran engage in nuclear aggression?

Netanyahu’s scenario follows a pattern of using American lives and clout to further Israel’s interests and decimate its adversaries. Survey the record — destruction of Iraq, destruction of Sudan, destruction of Libya, destruction of Egypt, destruction of Syria. and now Iran. Only Saudi Arabia and the Gulf countries will be left standing, remaining in that position as long as they show no threat to Israel.

The destructions visited upon the described nations have done little to advance US security and economy. Therefore, the reason for the actions and US support of Israel must be political —politicians coopted by catering to the religious right community and other Israel defenders. US administrations are willing to sacrifice American lives and give exorbitant financial assistance to Israel in trade for electoral support from Israel’s backers.

The present confrontations between Iran and Israel have escalated. Those who believe Israel’s few drones over Isfahan concluded retaliation for Iran’s excessive number of missiles and harmless result in the attack on Israel might be mistaken. The drones may have only tested Iranian defensive capability. More, much more provocations may happen.

Due to US aggressive tactics, the antagonists to Israel have fallen and Iran is the last nation standing.

The post Last Nation Standing ─ Iran first appeared on Dissident Voice.

This content originally appeared on Dissident Voice and was authored by Dan Lieberman.

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