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A New Middle East

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  • anjalisaga
    Dear friends, While the US mainstream media for the most part portray the Israeli bombing and invasion of Lebanon as a response to the Hezbollah capture of
    Message 1 of 1 , Aug 3 12:35 PM
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      Dear friends,

      While the US mainstream media for the most part
      portray the Israeli bombing and invasion of Lebanon as
      a "response" to the Hezbollah capture of two
      Israeli soldiers (although it should be obvious that a
      military campaign of this magnitude takes more than a
      few days to prepare) - the plan has been discussed in
      a general way for years, and the specific plans of the
      current war finalized for over a year, as part of much
      broader plans for "reconfiguring" the Middle East.

      Note Condoleeza Rice's recent, and telling, "birth
      pangs of a new Middle East": the neocon agenda, in
      contrast to its globalist predecessors, relies on
      military "solutions" to every "problem" even when that
      means radical DE-stabilization of entire regions of
      the world.

      This "new Middle East" has long been envisoned by US
      neoconservatives and their hardline Israeli allies.
      Following are some excerpts and links to articles
      which detail this.

      While this neocon vision-become-reality may seem
      it is now well known that the neocon "Project for the
      New American Century" (begun during the Reagan
      administration by many of those now in office -
      including Cheney, Rove, Rumsfeld, Perle, and Wolfowitz
      and/or in the defense industry) shaped plans for much
      of what we now see unfolding in the Middle East,
      the war in Iraq, long before Bush was elected.

      In "THE COMING WARS," written in 2005 for the
      NEW YORKER, Seymour Hersh discusses the
      Pentagon's plans for regime change throughout the
      Middle East - including an invasion of Iran - in the
      context of the vast expansion of DoD and executive
      branch powers, the dismantling of congressional
      oversight, and the related ascendancy of covert-ops
      under Rumsfeld.

      From Lucia - Thanks for these articles ..

      (4 articles)

      The unfolding crisis in Gaza was predicted by Israeli
      Jewish scholars Uri Davis, Ilan Pappe, and Tamar Yaron
      in July 2005. Their statement reads in part:

      "We believe that one primary, unstated motive for the
      determination of the government of the State of Israel
      to get the Jewish settlers of the Qatif (Katif)
      settlement block out of the Gaza Strip may be to keep
      them out of harm's way when the Israeli government and
      military possibly trigger an intensified mass attack
      on the approximately one and a half million
      Palestinians in the Gaza Strip, of whom about half are
      1948 Palestine refugees. The scenario could be similar
      to what has already happened in the past - a tactic
      that Ariel Sharon has used many times in his military
      career - i.e., utilizing provocation in order to
      launch massive attacks."

      -"After Gaza Disengagement," by Uri Davis, Ilan Pappe,
      and Tamar Yaron
      > >

      Also by the same authors:

      "URGENT!! All Eyes on Gaza Disengagement", The
      Moderate Observer

      "Urgent warning: The Israeli government may be
      contemplating crimes against humanity"

      [URI DAVIS is an Israeli scholar and author of
      numerous books focusing particularly on citizenship,
      apartheid and democracy in Israel and the Middle East.
      His newest book is Apartheid Israel: Possibilities for
      the struggle within (London: Zed). ILAN PAPPE is a
      senior lecturer of Political Science at Haifa
      University and the Academic Director of the Research
      Institute for Peace at Givat Haviva. His recent books
      include The Making of the Arab-Israeli Conflict,
      1948-1951 (New York, 1992) and The Israel/Palestine
      Question (London, 1999).]

      "Israel's Infrastructure Warfare," by Mike Whitney
      Middle East North Africa Financial Network


      Clearly, Israel's motives for the invasion have little
      to do with the abduction of Gilad Shalit by Hamas
      militants. In fact, Israel has stubbornly refused to
      negotiate for the release of the 19 year old corporal;
      preferring instead to carry out its carefully
      considered plan for making life untenable in Gaza.
      This suggests that the invasion is actually another
      attempt to ethnically cleanse the land of the native
      people by cutting off their access to vital food and

      The strategy for purging the land of its indigenous
      people is a recurrent theme in Israeli politics dating
      back to the inception of the state in 1948. Former
      Prime Minister Ariel Sharon summarized it this way:

      "You don't simply bundle people into trucks and drive
      them away. I prefer to advocate a positive policy, to
      create, in effect, a condition that in a positive way
      will induce people to leave."

      Sharon, of course, is advocating a form of "transfer"
      which "creates the conditions" that will drive people
      off the land rather than marshalling armies to achieve
      the same goal. This is what is presently taking place
      in Gaza.

      Regime Change in Ramallah

      Israel's attacks on the democratically-elected Hamas
      government have been instructive but not surprising.
      Soon after the January elections, Israel resolved to
      remove Hamas from power regardless of the cost. Apart
      from the daily assassinations and incitements, Israel
      has spearheaded a blockade of food, medical supplies
      and financial resources to the desperate people in the
      occupied territories. Israel has also supplied Mahmoud
      Abbas' loyalists in Fatah with truckloads of weapons
      in a conspicuous effort to destabilize the government
      and promote internecine warfare. The move has weakened
      support for Abbas and made him look like an Israeli
      agent. (His smiling appearance with Olmert in Jordan
      soon after the bombing of 7 family members on a beach
      in Gaza, has done nothing to restore Abbas credibility
      among his people)

      At 2 AM on Sunday morning the Israelis bombed the
      offices of Palestinian Prime Minister Ismail Haniya; a
      chilling reminder that the territories are ruled from
      Tel Aviv not Ramallah. Just a day earlier, Israeli
      Special Forces rounded up 64 members of Hamas
      including legislators, cabinet ministers, and

      The illegal arrests have been roundly criticized by
      leaders across the political spectrum, and
      particularly harshly by Aengus Snodaigh, member of the
      Irish Parliament. Snodaigh said that the arrest of
      Hamas government officials "demonstrates the true
      nature of Israel's commitment to `not so democratic'
      values" and that "Israel was one of the most
      despicable and abhorrent regimes on the planet."

      Snodaigh backed up his claims noting that (according
      to the UN Secretary General for Public Affairs) the
      "in the month prior to the capture of the Israeli
      soldier at least 49 Palestinians, including 11
      children, were killed by Israeli forces and 259
      injured." It should also be added that since Israel
      withdrew from Gaza in September of 2005, they have
      fired between 7,000 to 9,000 heavy artillery shells
      into Palestinian civilian areas.

      Israeli newspaper Ha'aretz confirmed that the arrests
      "had been planned several weeks ago" ["IDF Forces
      Arrest Palestinian Cabinet Ministers, Lawmakers Hamas
      arrests planned weeks ago," Ha'aretz, 06/29/06
      which proves that Corporal Gilad Shalit's capture has
      been used as a mere pretext to execute Israel's
      broader policy objectives (ethnic cleansing and


      (5 articles)

      "Arming an Israeli Attack on Iran - Why the US should
      cancel 'Bunker Buster' Bombs for Israel: Faulty
      Intelligence, WMD Hype and a New Trigger for War", the
      Insitute for Research on Middle Eastern Policy:

      "The Israeli target for the GBU-28 [the recent rush
      shipment of US-made "bunker buster" bombs to Israel
      reported in the NEW YORK TIMES
      is no secret. For months Israeli intelligence,
      political and policy operatives in the US have been
      presenting a case that Iran is secretly developing
      nuclear weapons that threaten Tel Aviv and other
      Israeli population centers."


      THE NEW YORK TIMES: "Weapons: U.S. Speeds Up Bomb
      Delivery for the Israelis" By DAVID S. CLOUD and

      The Bush administration is rushing a delivery of
      precision-guided bombs to Israel, which some military
      officers see as a sign of a longer campaign ahead.


      "Is Israel running out of Bombs? New Deliveries of
      WMD 'Made in America'" by Michel Chossudovsky, Center
      for Research on Globalization

      The Replenishing of Israeli WMD stockpiles points to
      escalation both within and beyond the borders of


      The Israeli air force confirms that it has led 3,000
      sorties hitting some 1,800 targets since the beginning
      of the bombing campaign (BBC, 22 July 2006). According
      to UN sources, close to a million people have been
      displaced out of a total population of 3.8 million.
      The country's civilian infrastructure has been

      In contrast to the "shock and awe" March 2003
      blitzkrieg over Iraq, the Israelis have aimed
      systematically and almost exclusively civilian
      targets. Moreover, Lebanon is defenseless. It does not
      possess an air defense system and the Israelis know
      it. The number of declared targets is staggering, even
      when compared, for instance, to the 300 selected
      strategic targets identified in the 1991 Gulf war.

      The civilian infrastructure has been destroyed: water,
      telecommunications, bridges, airports, gas stations,
      power plants, dairy factories, etc. Confirmed by the
      British press, in towns and villages across Lebanon,
      schools and hospitals have been targetted with
      meticulous accuracy. in an utterly twised logic, the
      Israeli government has casually blamed Hizbollah for
      using the schools and hospitals as hideouts or
      launchpads to wage their terrorist activities. (ABC
      Australia, interview with Israeli Ambassador to
      Australia, Nati Tamir, 21 July 2006).

      A military operation of this magnitude takes months to
      prepare. The decision to bomb Lebanon was taken well
      before July 12. The war on Lebanon is part of a
      broader Middle East military agenda which has been in
      the planning stage for more than a year.


      "The proposed shipment [of US-made "bunker buster"
      bombs, as reported in the New York Times
      is described by military observers as somewhat
      "unusual". Israel already has a large stockpile of
      precision guided weapons. In addition to its own
      stockpiles, the IDF took delivery in 2005 of some 5000
      US made "smart air launched weapons" including some
      500 'bunker-buster bombs.

      Why would Israel all of sudden need to replenish its
      stockpile of Weapons of Mass Destruction, to implement
      what continues to be described as a punitive operation
      directed against Hizbollah?

      While the report suggests that "Israel still had a
      long list of targets in Lebanon to strike", the
      history of these deliveries of bunker buster bombs to
      Israel, suggests that they are also intended to be
      used in the broader Middle Eastern region.

      Moreover, it is worth recalling that the first
      shipment of US made bunker buster bombs in 2005 was
      delivered to Israel, in the eventuality of a
      US-Israeli attack on Iran's nuclear facilities.



      Strategy was put in motion as Hezbollah began gaining
      military strength in Lebanon

      Matthew Kalman, Chronicle Foreign Service
      Friday, July 21, 2006


      (07-21) 04:00 PDT Jerusalem -- Israel's military
      response by air, land and sea to what it considered a
      provocation last week by Hezbollah militants is
      unfolding according to a plan finalized more than a
      year ago.


      "Of all of Israel's wars since 1948, this was the one
      for which Israel was most prepared," said Gerald
      Steinberg, professor of political science at Bar-Ilan
      University. "In a sense, the preparation began in May
      2000, immediately after the Israeli withdrawal, when
      it became clear the international community was not
      going to prevent Hezbollah from stockpiling missiles
      and attacking Israel. By 2004, the military campaign
      scheduled to last about three weeks that we're seeing
      now had already been blocked out and, in the last year
      or two, it's been simulated and rehearsed across the

      More than a year ago, a senior Israeli army officer
      began giving PowerPoint presentations, on an
      off-the-record basis, to U.S. and other diplomats,
      journalists and think tanks, setting out the plan for
      the current operation in revealing detail. Under the
      ground rules of the briefings, the officer could not
      be identified.


      Israeli officials say their pinpoint commando raids
      should not be confused with a ground invasion. Nor,
      they say, do they herald another occupation of
      southern Lebanon, which Israel maintained from 1982 to
      2000 -- in order, it said, to thwart Hezbollah attacks
      on Israel.

      Planners anticipated the likelihood of civilian deaths
      on both sides.


      What the Pentagon can now do in secret


      Issue of 2005-01-24 and 31
      Posted 2005-01-17


      George W. Bush's reëlection was not his only victory
      last fall. The President and his national-security
      advisers have consolidated control over the military
      and intelligence communities' strategic analyses and
      covert operations to a degree unmatched since the rise
      of the post-Second World War national-security state.
      Bush has an aggressive and ambitious agenda for using
      that control—against the mullahs in Iran and against
      targets in the ongoing war on terrorism—during his
      second term. The C.I.A. will continue to be
      downgraded, and the agency will increasingly serve, as
      one government consultant with close ties to the
      Pentagon put it, as "facilitators" of policy emanating
      from President Bush and Vice-President Dick Cheney.
      This process is well under way.

      Despite the deteriorating security situation in Iraq,
      the Bush Administration has not reconsidered its basic
      long-range policy goal in the Middle East: the
      establishment of democracy throughout the region.
      Bush's reëlection is regarded within the
      Administration as evidence of America's support for
      his decision to go to war. It has reaffirmed the
      position of the neoconservatives in the Pentagon's
      civilian leadership who advocated the invasion,
      including Paul Wolfowitz, the Deputy Secretary of
      Defense, and Douglas Feith, the Under-secretary for
      Policy. According to a former high-level intelligence
      official, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld met
      with the Joint Chiefs of Staff shortly after the
      election and told them, in essence, that the naysayers
      had been heard and the American people did not accept
      their message. Rumsfeld added that America was
      committed to staying in Iraq and that there would be
      no second-guessing.

      "This is a war against terrorism, and Iraq is just one
      campaign. The Bush Administration is looking at this
      as a huge war zone," the former high-level
      intelligence official told me. "Next, we're going to
      have the Iranian campaign. We've declared war and the
      bad guys, wherever they are, are the enemy. This is
      the last hurrah—we've got four years, and want to come
      out of this saying we won the war on terrorism."


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