U.S. Accuses Iran of D.C. Terror Plot

33 posts / 0 new
Last post
Johnny Oxygen's picture
Johnny Oxygen
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Sep 9 2009
Posts: 1443
U.S. Accuses Iran of D.C. Terror Plot


U.S. Accuses Iran of D.C. Terror Plot


http://www.thedailybeast.com/cheat-sheets/2011/10/11/cheat-sheet.html

 

U.S. officials say they have foiled what could have been a major terrorist attack on Washington, D.C. directed by elements within the Iranian government. The capital’s Israeli and Saudi embassies were allegedly the target of two Iranian men, Gholam Shakuri and Manssor Arbabsiar, who is a naturalized U.S. citizen. The men reportedly planned to assassinate Saudi Arabia’s ambassador with bombs. FBI Director Robert Mueller said many lives could have been lost and Attorney General Eric Holder vowed to hold Iran accountable. According to the criminal complaint filed Tuesday, Arbabsiar sought to meet with a representative of a Mexican drug cartel.(Luckily, the "representative" turned out to be a Drug Enforcement Administration confidential source.) Arbabsiar is in custody and Shakuri remains at large.

Ah!

The peasants are restless so its time for a distraction. Enter the new/old boogeyman.

Now how will they spin it so that the protesters support the Iranian terror attack?

xraymike79's picture
xraymike79
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Aug 24 2008
Posts: 2040
Something fishy again in the Military Industrial Corporatocracy

 Granted the link is to PressTV, but they are interviewing a former U.S. CIA officer:

http://www.presstv.ir/usdetail/204065.html

xraymike79's picture
xraymike79
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Aug 24 2008
Posts: 2040
Build the Hate for War Distraction and Profit

 

...The FBI has made a protocol of cradling disgruntled individuals, posing as operatives in extremist groups, and encouraging them to engage in violence. Their practices have come under increasing scrutiny as qualifying as entrapment.

For years now, a concerted covert US campaign of cyber-terrorism, commercial sabotage, targeted assassinations, and proxy wars has apparently been under way in Iran. Additionally, US-supported Israeli agents have admitted to committing terrorist acts, including assassinations, on people inside Iran.

The US is currently imposing harsh economic sanctions against Iran and has been garrisoning Iran’s surroundings with war, occupation, military bases, provocative naval activity, and rival client states.

This failed plot, apparently concocted at least in part by the FBI, and apparently traced to some rogue individual within the Quds Force (not to the Iranian government), is the only tangible action that the US has been able to claim came from any Iranian elements.

These developments come days after the Iranian government proposed – again – to swap low-enriched uranium for fuel rods to use in the Tehran Research Reactor, which produces medical isotopes. The deal, abandoned by the US in 2009 after Iran agreed to it, would safeguard against fears of Iran’s nuclear enrichment being used for military purposes, despite there being no evidence for such fears.

To sweeten the deal, President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad reiterated that the Iranian government is willing to immediately stop all production of 20-percent enriched uranium if the US agrees to the deal. The US has so far turned down the renewed opportunity to ease tensions and reduce the potential for nuclearproliferation, instead using this FBI sting to push for even harsher measures against Iran.

http://news.antiwar.com/2011/10/11/us-ties-iran-to-assassination-plot-in-fbi-sting/

JuanGalt's picture
JuanGalt
Status: Silver Member (Offline)
Joined: Sep 6 2011
Posts: 188
XrayMike79- on some related posts...

You might want the visit "THE BASEMENT" (you know, the controversial topics forum board) for more related info on this. Think you'll dig it.

Just select "all forums" and scroll ALL THE WAY to the bottom. That's why we call it "the basemen". Only free registered users can see that particular forum. Enjoy!

JG

Saffron's picture
Saffron
Status: Gold Member (Offline)
Joined: Aug 29 2009
Posts: 250
no need to spin it ...

 

Johnny Oxygen wrote:

 


 

Ah!

The peasants are restless so its time for a distraction. Enter the new/old boogeyman.

Now how will they spin it so that the protesters support the Iranian terror attack?

... it's doing it's job ... knock the occupy movement from the headlines.

~ s
Johnny Oxygen's picture
Johnny Oxygen
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Sep 9 2009
Posts: 1443
U.S. aims to "unite the world" against Iran

http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2011/10/12/national/main20119095.shtml

 The Obama administration plans to leverage charges that Iran plotted to assassinate Saudi Arabia's ambassador to the United States into a new global campaign to isolate the Islamic republic.

"It's critically important that we unite the world in the isolation of and dealing with the Iranians," Vice President Joe Biden said on "The Early Show" Wednesday. "That's the surest way to be able to get results."

U.S. officials say the administration will lobby for the imposition of new international sanctions as well as for individual nations to expand their own penalties against Iran based on allegations that Iranian agents tried to recruit a purported member of a Mexican drug cartel to kill the Saudi envoy on American soil.

Biden also said that U.S. action against Iran could go beyond sanctions, but added that "we're not going there yet."

plato1965's picture
plato1965
Status: Platinum Member (Offline)
Joined: Feb 18 2009
Posts: 615
Khamenei claims Occupy Wall

Khamenei claims Occupy Wall Street protests will topple US capitalism

Iran's supreme leader tells rally America is in full-blown crisis because of its 'corrupt foundation'

 http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/oct/12/iran-us-protests-topple-capitalism

 

 Helpful intervention.. ?

 Remind me again.. are we still at war with eurasia ?

 

 

xraymike79's picture
xraymike79
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Aug 24 2008
Posts: 2040
Are we our own worst enemy?
plato1965 wrote:

Khamenei claims Occupy Wall Street protests will topple US capitalism

Iran's supreme leader tells rally America is in full-blown crisis because of its 'corrupt foundation'

 http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/oct/12/iran-us-protests-topple-capitalism 

 Helpful intervention.. ?

 Remind me again.. are we still at war with eurasia ?

 

Ayatollah Ali Khamenei claimed the US was now in a full blown crisis because its "corrupt foundation has been exposed to the American people".

If Satan himself said that, does it make that statement any less true? And no amount of flag waving and foreign demonization can change that fact.

xraymike79's picture
xraymike79
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Aug 24 2008
Posts: 2040
Questions from former CIA Operative

 

 

Questions from former CIA operative Baer about the alleged Iranian plot

I just spoke with former CIA operative Bob Baer who expressed his skepticism about the allegation that Iran was behind the plot to kill the Saudi Ambassador to the U.S. Robert Baer is a former Middle East CIA field officer and TIME.com's intelligence columnist.  He is also the author of See No EvilThe Devil We Know and The Company We Keep. Here's what he had to say:

"There are very few groups operationally better than Iran’s Quds Force. They know what they are doing. The only proxies they use are ones they’ve vetted. They don’t let their own citizens get involved. They send other people to do it for them from Hezbollah to Bosnian Muslims. It would be completely uncharacteristic for Iran to be caught red handed."

"So why were they all of a sudden so sloppy? Why would they take this risk now? Who cares about Saudi Ambassador to the U.S. Ali Jaber, anyway? He’s not a royal. He’s probably not the main interlocutor between the United States and Saudi Arabia. Why not go for Saudi Prince Bandar in London? Many other targets would serve Iranian interests better."

"Everybody is looking for evidence that there is going to be a confrontation with Iran. Everybody is jumping on this as a sign of conflict to come. But there are many questions here that need to be answered."

 

xraymike79's picture
xraymike79
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Aug 24 2008
Posts: 2040
Militainment, Inc.

 

 

The fast and furious plot to occupy Iran 

 

No one ever lost money betting on the dull predictability of the US government. Just as Occupy Wall Street is firing imaginations all across the spectrum - piercing the noxious revolving door between government and casino capitalism - Washington brought us all down to earth, sensationally advertising an Iranian cum Mexican cartel terror plot straight out of The Fast and the Furious movie franchise. The potential victim: Adel al-Jubeir, the ambassador in the US of that lovely counter-revolutionary Mecca, Saudi Arabia. 

FBI Director Robert Mueller insisted the Iran-masterminded terror plot “reads like the pages of a Hollywood script”. It does. And quite a sloppy script at that. Fast and Furious duo Paul Walker/Vin Diesel wouldn’t be caught dead near it.

The good guys in this Washington production are the FBI and the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA). In the words of Attorney General Eric Holder, they uncovered “a deadly plot directed by factions of the Iranian government to assassinate a foreign Ambassador on US soil with explosives”.

Holder added that the bombing of the Saudi embassy in Washington was also part of the plan. Subsequent spinning amplified that to planned bombings of the Israeli embassy in Washington, as well as the Saudi and Israeli embassies in Buenos Aires.

The Justice Department has peddled quite a murky story - Operation Red Coalition (no, you can’t make that stuff up) - centered on one Manssor Arbabsiar, a 56-year-old holding both Iranian and US passports and an Iran-based co-conspirator, Gholam Shakuri, an alleged member of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps's (IRGC) Quds Force.

Arbabsiar allegedly had a series of encounters in Mexico with a DEA mole posing as a Mexican drug cartel heavy weight. The Iranian-American seems to have been convinced that the mole was a member of the hardcore Zetas Mexican cartel, and reportedly bragged he was being “directed by high-ranking members of the Iranian government”, including a cousin who was “a member of the Iranian army but did not wear a uniform”.

On top of it, he told the DEA mole that his Iranian government buddies could come up with “tons of opium” for the Mexican cartel (an Afghan connection, perhaps). Then they discussed a “number of violent missions" complete with Arbabsiar bragging about bombing a packed Washington restaurant used by the Saudi ambassador.

Holder characterised the whole thing as a $1.5m “murder-for-hire” plan. Arbabsiar was arrested only a few days ago, on September 29, at JFK airport in New York. He allegedly confessed, according to the Justice Department. Shakuri for his part is still at large.

Holder was adamant: “The United States is committed to hold Iran accountable for its actions.” Yet he stopped short of stating the plot was approved by the highest levels of the Iranian government. So what next? War? Hold your horses; Washington should first think about asking the Chinese if they’re willing to foot the bill (the answer will be no.)    

Predictably, the proverbial torrent of US “officials” came out with guns blazing, spinning everything in sight. An alarmed Pentagon will be increasing surveillance over the Quds Force and “Iran’s actions” in Iraq, Afghanistan and the Persian Gulf. Former US ambassadors stated that, “it’s an attack on the United States to attack this ambassador”. Washington is about to impose even more sanctions against Iran; and Washington is urgently taking the matter to the UN Security Council.

What next? A R2P (“responsibility to protect”) resolution ordering NATO to protect every House of Saud minion across the world by bombing Iran into regime change?   

Ali Akbar Javanfekr, a spokesman for Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, at least introduced a little bit of common sense. “I think the US government is busy fabricating a new scenario and history has shown both the US government and the CIA have a lot of experience in fabricating these scenarios… I think their goal is to reach the American public. They want to take the public’s mind off the serious domestic problems they’re facing these days and scare them with fabricated problems outside the country.” Iran has not even established yet that these two characters are actually Iranian citizens.

The Iranian government - which prides itself on a logical approach to diplomacy - would have to have been inoculated with a terminal Stuxnet-style foolishness virus to behave in such a counterproductive manner, by targeting a high-profile foreign policy adviser to King Abdullah on American soil. The official Iranian news agency IRNA described the plot as “America’s new propaganda scenario” against Iran.

As for the Washington mantra that “Iran has been insinuating itself into many of the struggles in the Middle East”, that’s undiluted Saudi propaganda. In fact it’s the House of Saud who’s been conducting the fierce counter-revolution that has smashed any possibility of an Arab Spring in the Persian Gulf - from the invasion and repression of Bahrain to the rash pre-emption of protests inside Saudi Arabia’s Shia-dominated eastern provinces.

The whole thing smells like a flimsy pretext for a casus belli. The timing of the announcement couldn’t be more suspicious. White House national security advisor Thomas E. Donilon briefed King Abdullah of the plot no less than two weeks ago, in a three-hour meeting in Riyadh. Meanwhile the US government has been carrying not plots, but targeted assassinations of US citizens, as in the Anwar al-Awlaki case.  

So why now? Holder is caught in yet another scandal - on whether he told lies regarding Operation Fast and Furious (no, you can’t make this stuff up), a federal gun sting through which scores of US weapons ended up in the hands of - here they come again - Mexican drug cartels.

So how to bury Fast and Furious, the economic abyss, the 10 years of war in Afghanistan, the increasing allure of Occupy Wall Street - not to mention the Saudi role in smashing the spirit of the Arab Spring? By uncovering a good ol’ al-Qaeda style plot on US soil, on top of it  conducted by “evil” Iran. Al-Qaeda and Tehran sharing top billing; not even Cheney and Rumsfeld in their heyday could come up with something like this. Long live GWOT (the global war on terror). And long live the neo-con spirit; remember, real men go to Tehran - and the road starts now. 

 

Johnny Oxygen's picture
Johnny Oxygen
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Sep 9 2009
Posts: 1443
Unlikely Turn for a Suspect in a Terror Plot

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/13/us/odd-turn-for-mansour-arbabsiar-susp...

 

WASHINGTON — His nickname was Scarface, the legacy of a brutal knife attack on a dark Houston street three decades ago that left his left cheek permanently marred. Friends and neighbors in Texas said that he could be gruff and intimidating, and that he often stood outside his house at night smoking and talking on his cellphone in a language they did not understand.

Maybe he was speaking 'eastern' as in New Jersey. Doesn't this guy look like a plumber from New Jersey?

 

 

But Mansour J. Arbabsiar, 56, the man at the center of an alleged Iranian plot to kill a Saudi diplomat in Washington, seems to have been more a stumbling opportunist than a calculating killer. Over the 30-odd years he lived in Texas, he left a string of failed businesses and angry creditors in his wake, and an embittered ex-wife who sought a protective order against him. He was perennially disheveled, friends and acquaintances said, and hopelessly disorganized.

Mr. Arbabsiar, now in custody in New York, stands accused by federal prosecutors of running a global terrorist plot that stretched from Mexico to Tehran, and that was directed by the Quds Force of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards. Many of his old friends and associates in Texas seemed stunned at the news, not merely because he was not a zealot, but because he seemed too incompetent to pull it off.

“His socks would not match,” said Tom Hosseini, a former college roommate and friend. “He was always losing his keys and his cellphone. He was not capable of carrying out this plan.”

Yes. All signs of a true mastermind.

 

Johnny Oxygen's picture
Johnny Oxygen
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Sep 9 2009
Posts: 1443
Iran Plot’s WikiLeaks Link

http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2011/10/14/iran-s-alleged-plot-to-...

 

And away we goooooooo.

They are building the case to attack Iran.

U.S. officials say a diplomatic cable disclosed by WikiLeaks may have provided one motive for Iran if it wanted to kill the Saudi ambassador to America, and that there’s strong evidence of Tehran's involvement.

Then we must shut down that terror helping Wikileaks.

 

Juan Zarate, who served as a deputy national security adviser dealing with counterterrorism under President George W. Bush, said, “We have been concerned about the Iranian reach into North and South America for some time now. In a certain way this is comforting, this is a very sloppy, poorly executed attack plan. On the other hand, I don’t think this should lull us into a sense of security of what Iran is capable of.”

Michael Leiter, who stepped down this year from his post as director of the national counterterrorism center, told the Senate last September that he believed Hizbullah, a group with strong backing from the Iranian government, had the capability to launch an attack in the United States.

When asked “Do you think if there’s an escalation between Iran and Israel that we will see more of a threat here in the United States?” Leiter responded with one word, “yes.”

Suspicions that Iran might try to strike on U.S. soil have been around for years. Between 2002 and 2006, the Bush administration expelled at least six Iranian diplomats from the United Nations for spying, on the ground that the diplomats were casing subway lines in New York City.

plato1965's picture
plato1965
Status: Platinum Member (Offline)
Joined: Feb 18 2009
Posts: 615
 cf: Bill Hicks review of

 cf: Bill Hicks review of Basic Instinct..

 Just as it's a bad idea to take trolls seriously.. one day I hope we will evolve the ability to look at meticulously detailed propaganda,

 and go..

 "Oh. it's a piece of s**t"

 Next.

 

 

 

xraymike79's picture
xraymike79
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Aug 24 2008
Posts: 2040
FBI Account of “Terror Plot” Suggests Sting Operation



FBI Account of “Terror Plot” Suggests Sting Operation

(IPS) — While the administration of Barack Obama vows to hold the Iranian government “accountable” for the alleged plot to assassinate the Saudi ambassador in Washington, the legal document describing evidence in the case provides multiple indications that it was mainly the result of an FBI “sting” operation.

Although the legal document, called an amended criminal complaint, implicates Iranian-American Manssor Arbabsiar and his cousin Ali Gholam Shakuri, an officer in the Iranian Quds Force, in a plan to assassinate Saudi Arabian Ambassador Adel al-Jubeir, it also suggests that the idea originated with and was strongly pushed by a undercover DEA informant, at the direction of the FBI.

On May 24, when Arbabsiar first met with the DEA informant he thought was part of a Mexican drug cartel, it was not to hire a hit squad to kill the ambassador. Rather, there is reason to believe that the main purpose was to arrange a deal to sell large amounts of opium from Afghanistan.

In the complaint, the closest to a semblance of evidence that Arbabsiar sought help during that first meeting to assassinate the Saudi ambassador is the allegation, attributed to the DEA informant, that Arbabsiar said he was  “interested in, among other things, attacking an embassy of Saudi Arabia”.

Among the “other things” was almost certainly a deal on heroin controlled by officers in the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC). Three Bloomberg reporters, citing a “federal law enforcement official”, wrote that Arbabsiar told the DEA informant he represented Iranians who “controlled drug smuggling and could provide tons of opium”.

Because of opium entering Iran from Afghanistan, Iranian authorities hold 85 percent of the world’s opium seizures, according to Iran’s Fars News Agency. Iranian security personnel, including those in the IRGC and its Quds Force, then have the opportunity to sell the opium to traffickers in the Middle East, Europe and now Mexico.

Mexican drug cartels have begun connecting with Middle Eastern drug traffickers, in many cases stationing operatives in Middle East locations to facilitate heroin production and sales, according to a report last January in Border Beat, an online news service run by University of Arizona journalism students.

But the FBI account of the contacts between Arbabsiar and the DEA informant does not reference any discussions of drugs.

The criminal complaint refers to an unspecified number of meetings between Arbabsiar and the DEA informant in late June and the first two weeks of July.

What transpired in those meetings remains the central mystery surrounding the case.

The official account of the investigation cites the testimony of the informant (referred to in the document as “CS-1″) in stating, “Over the course of a series of meetings, ARBABSIAR explained to CS-1 that his associates in Iran had discussed a number of violent missions for CS-1 and CIS-1′s purported criminal associates to perform.”

The account claims that the mission discussed included murdering the
ambassador. But no specific statement proposing or agreeing to the act is
attributed to Arbabsiar. “Prior to the July 14 meeting, CS- 1 had reported that he and Arbabsiar had discussed the possibility of attacks on a number of other targets,” the account states.

The targets are described as involving “foreign government facilities associated with Saudi Arabia and with another country…located either in or outside the United States”, without mentioning any discussion of the Saudi ambassador.

Both that language and the absence of any statement attributed to Arbabsiar imply that the Iranian- American said nothing about assassinating the Saudi ambassador except in response to  suggestions by the informant, who was already part of an FBI undercover operation.

The DEA informant, as the FBI account acknowledges in a footnote, had previously been charged with a narcotics offence by a state in the U.S. and had been cooperating in narcotics investigations – apparently posing as a drug cartel operative – in return for dropping the charges. The document is notably silent on whether the conversation was recorded.

A former FBI official familiar with procedures in such cases, who spoke to IPS anonymously, said the FBI would normally have recorded all such conversations touching on the possibility of terrorism.

The absence of quotes from any of those meetings suggests that they do not support the case being made by the FBI and the Obama administration.

The account is quite explicit, on the other hand, that the July 14 and July 17 meetings were recorded at FBI direction. Statements quoted from those transcripts show the DEA informant trying to induce Arbabsiar to indicate agreement to assassinating the Saudi ambassador.

The informant is quoted as saying he would need “at least four guys” and would “take the one point five for the Saudi Arabia”. He declared that he “go ahead and work on the Saudi Arabia, get all the information we can”.

At one point the informant says, “You just want the, the main guy.” And at the end of the meeting, he declares, “[W]e’re gonna start doing the guy”.

The fact that not a single quote from Arbabsiar shows that he agreed to assassinating the ambassador, much less proposed it, suggests that he was either  non-committal or linking the issue to something else, such as the prospect of a major drug deal with the cartel.

Arbabsiar’s quotes from a Sep. 2 phone conversation referring to the cartel as “having the number for the safe” and “once you open the door that’s it” could refer to a drug transaction that had been discussed, while the FBI account suggest those quotes refer to the assassination and “other projects” with the Iranian group.

At the July 17 meeting, the DEA informant presented a plan to blow up a restaurant to kill the mbassador, with the possible deaths of 100-150 people, eliciting a lack of concern on the part of Arbabsiar about such deaths.

During a visit to Iran in August, Arbabsiar wired two equal payments totalling $100,000 to a bank account in New York. But he was still under the impression that he was about to cash in on a deal with the cartel.

The Washington Post reported Thursday that Arbabsiar had told an Iranian-American friend from Corpus Christie, Texas, “I’m going to make good money.”

There is also circumstantial evidence that Arbabsiar may have even been brought into the sting operation to help further implicate his cousin Gholam Shakuri in the terrorist plot.

Arbabsiar met with his cousin Shakuri in late September and told him that the cartel was demanding that he, Arbabsiar, go to Mexico personally to guarantee payment. That demand from the DEA was an obvious device by the FBI to get Shakuri and his associates in Tehran to demonstrate their commitment to the assassination.

The FBI account indicates that Shakuri told Arbabsiar that he was responsible for himself if he went to Mexico. That statement would have been a warning sign for Arbabsiar, if he still believed he was dealing with one of the most murderous drug cartels in Mexico, that he would be risking his own life for a group that was no longer taking responsibility for him.

Yet Arbabsiar flew to Mexico as if unconcerned about that risk.

After his arrest on September 29 Arbabsiar waived the right to a lawyer and proceeded to provide a complete confession. A few days later, he placed a phone call to Shakuri which was recorded “at the direction of federal enforcement agents”, according to the FBI.

Gareth Porter is an investigative historian and journalist specialising in U.S. national security policy.

jrf29's picture
jrf29
Status: Gold Member (Offline)
Joined: Apr 18 2008
Posts: 453
Re: "FBI Account of “Terror Plot” Suggests Sting Operation"

XRaymike79,

I read the entire article that you posted.  Since it was fairly well-written, it was beginning to convince me that the FBI had done not only a sting operation (and it certainly was a sting operation), but that it had actually entrapped the Iranians.  But I wondered why the article didn't provide a link to the Criminal Complaint, which is, of course, a public document.  After reading the Dissient Voice's fairly explosive allegations of entrapment, one would certainly want to see for themselves, right?

The Amended Criminal Complaint can be viewed here: http://www.jdsupra.com/post/documentViewer.aspx?fid=a334ea94-9f4f-4364-8cb6-496634c7783f

It turns out that there is a good reason why the "dissident voice" doesn't link directly to the criminal complaint: because everything that Gareth Porter writes is fabricated virtually out of whole cloth!

Let's take a single example:

[quote=dissidentvoice.org] Statements quoted from those transcripts [of meetings on July 14th and 17th] show the DEA informant trying to induce Arbabsiar to indicate agreement to assassinating the Saudi ambassador.

The informant is quoted as saying he would need “at least four guys” and would “take the one point five for the Saudi Arabia”. He declared that he “go ahead and work on the Saudi Arabia, get all the information we can”.

At one point the informant says, “You just want the, the main guy.” And at the end of the meeting, he declares, “[W]e’re gonna start doing the guy”.

The fact that not a single quote from Arbabsiar shows that he agreed to assassinating the ambassador, much less proposed it, suggests that he was either  non-committal or linking the issue to something else, such as the prospect of a major drug deal with the cartel. [/quote]

Entirely false.  What the articles skips right over is bolded below.  See Complaint, pg. 8-9: [quote=Amended Criminal Complaint] "On or about July 14, 2011, MANSSOR ARBABSIAR, a/k/a "Mansour Arbabsiar," the defendant, met with CS-1 in Mexico.  At the direction of law-enforcement agents, CS-1 made an audio recording of the meeting . . . CS-1 told ARBABSIAR that CS-1 would need to use "[a]t least four guys" and that CS-1 was "talking to one of the guys" and would "take the one point five for the Saudi Arabia."

After CS-1 stated, you just want the, the main guy," ARBABSIAR confirmed that he just wanted the "[A]mbassador" — which I understand to mean that ARBABSIAR wanted CS-1 to arrange for the assassination of the Ambassador before executing the other attacks they had discussed." [/quote]  In case there is any possible doubt remaining that Arbabsiar wanted the ambassador dead, see Complaint, pg. 10:
[quote=Amended Criminal Complaint] "On or about July 17, 2011, MANSSOR ARBABSIAR, a/k/a "Mansour Arbabsiar," the defendant, met with CS-1 again in Mexico.  At the direction of law-enforcement agents, CS-1 recorded the meeting . . .

"CS-1 made reference to "my guy over there he's already in Washington," which I understand to be a reference to the fact that, one of CS-l's workers had purportedly already traveled to Washington, D.C. to surveil the Ambassador. CS-1 then asked, "I got this on the computer ..     is this the guy right here?" - to which ARBABSIAR replied, "Yeah, that's him."

"CS-1 described what he had purportedly begun to learn about the Ambassador, stating that the Ambassador has "eight to seven security people around him [h]e goes out and eat like two times a week in a restaurant    [m]y guy is already over there    doing surveillance."  CS-1 then reflected, "I don't know what exactly your cousin  wants me to do."   After some further conversation, ARBABSIAR replied: "[h]e wants you to kill this guy."  CS-1 then explained, "there's gonna be like American people there in the restaurant.  You want me to do it outside or in the restaurant?"  ARBABSIAR answered; "[d]oesn't matter how you do it. I mean, if you do it by himself, kill is better, but sometime, you know, you have no choice, is that right?"  [/quote] And if that wasn't enough, see Complaint, pg. 11-12: [quote=Amended Criminal Complaint] On numerous occasions during the July 17 meeting, ARBABSIAR made it clear that the assassination needed to go forward, even if doing so would cause mass casualties.  For example, ARBABSIAR said: "They want that guy done, if the hundred go with him, fuck 'em."  In a similar vein, ARBABSIAR and CS-1 also discussed the means by which the Ambassador would be killed.  CS-1 said: "I'm gonna blow him    up or shoot him, whatever you want." ARBABSIAR responded: "Yeah, it doesn't matter [w]hatever is easy for - how is possible for you." [/quote]  After reading all of the above, the dissident voice saw fit to say, "The fact that not a single quote from Arbabsiar shows that he agreed to assassinating the ambassador, much less proposed it, suggests that he was either  non-committal, or linking the issue to something else, such as the prospect of a major drug deal."  Really?

If you go through the article and the criminal complaint, you can pick out other examples of fabrication, which does a disservice to independant reporters everywhere, and has reduced my personal faith in xraymike's due diligence in the sources that he relies on and presents to the community.

xraymike79's picture
xraymike79
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Aug 24 2008
Posts: 2040
You Did Not Convince Me
jrf29 wrote:

XRaymike79,

I read the entire article that you posted.  Since it was fairly well-written, it was beginning to convince me that the FBI had done not only a sting operation (and it certainly was a sting operation), but that it had actually entrapped the Iranians.  But I wondered why the article didn't provide a link to the Criminal Complaint, which is, of course, a public document.  After reading the Dissient Voice's fairly explosive allegations of entrapment, one would certainly want to see for themselves, right?

The Amended Criminal Complaint can be viewed here: http://www.jdsupra.com/post/documentViewer.aspx?fid=a334ea94-9f4f-4364-8...

It turns out that there is a good reason why the "dissident voice" doesn't link directly to the criminal complaint: because everything that Gareth Porter writes is fabricated virtually out of whole cloth!

Let's take a single example:

dissidentvoice.org wrote:

Statements quoted from those transcripts [of meetings on July 14th and 17th] show the DEA informant trying to induce Arbabsiar to indicate agreement to assassinating the Saudi ambassador.

The informant is quoted as saying he would need “at least four guys” and would “take the one point five for the Saudi Arabia”. He declared that he “go ahead and work on the Saudi Arabia, get all the information we can”.

At one point the informant says, “You just want the, the main guy.” And at the end of the meeting, he declares, “[W]e’re gonna start doing the guy”.

The fact that not a single quote from Arbabsiar shows that he agreed to assassinating the ambassador, much less proposed it, suggests that he was either  non-committal or linking the issue to something else, such as the prospect of a major drug deal with the cartel.

Entirely false.  What the articles skips right over is bolded below.  See Complaint, pg. 8-9: [quote=Amended Criminal Complaint] "On or about July 14, 2011, MANSSOR ARBABSIAR, a/k/a "Mansour Arbabsiar," the defendant, met with CS-1 in Mexico.  At the direction of law-enforcement agents, CS-1 made an audio recording of the meeting . . . CS-1 told ARBABSIAR that CS-1 would need to use "[a]t least four guys" and that CS-1 was "talking to one of the guys" and would "take the one point five for the Saudi Arabia."

After CS-1 stated, you just want the, the main guy," ARBABSIAR confirmed that he just wanted the "[A]mbassador" — which I understand to mean that ARBABSIAR wanted CS-1 to arrange for the assassination of the Ambassador before executing the other attacks they had discussed."

 

Quote:

The only quote I see is the single word "Ambassador" supposedly from Arbabsiar and the rest is conjecture by the FBI entrapment team:

"[A]mbassador" — which I understand to mean that ARBABSIAR wanted CS-1 to arrange for the assassination of the Ambassador before executing the other attacks they had discussed.

Sorry, nothing concrete there.

In case there is any possible doubt remaining that Arbabsiar wanted the ambassador dead, see Complaint, pg. 10:
[quote=Amended Criminal Complaint] "On or about July 17, 2011, MANSSOR ARBABSIAR, a/k/a "Mansour Arbabsiar," the defendant, met with CS-1 again in Mexico.  At the direction of law-enforcement agents, CS-1 recorded the meeting . . .

"CS-1 made reference to "my guy over there he's already in Washington," which I understand to be a reference to the fact that, one of CS-l's workers had purportedly already traveled to Washington, D.C. to surveil the Ambassador. CS-1 then asked, "I got this on the computer ..     is this the guy right here?" - to which ARBABSIAR replied, "Yeah, that's him."

"CS-1 described what he had purportedly begun to learn about the Ambassador, stating that the Ambassador has "eight to seven security people around him [h]e goes out and eat like two times a week in a restaurant    [m]y guy is already over there    doing surveillance."  CS-1 then reflected, "I don't know what exactly your cousin  wants me to do."   After some further conversation, ARBABSIAR replied: "[h]e wants you to kill this guy."  CS-1 then explained, "there's gonna be like American people there in the restaurant.  You want me to do it outside or in the restaurant?"  ARBABSIAR answered; "[d]oesn't matter how you do it. I mean, if you do it by himself, kill is better, but sometime, you know, you have no choice, is that right?" 

Could it be that the FBI is simply a tool for pushing U.S. foreign policy? What a surprise. Perhaps we should be questioning the government's due dilligence, or perhaps just jump behind you in blind lockstep file.

Here is the author in an interview within the last day.

Maybe we should send Gareth Porter an email about your questions on his article: 

http://www.independent.org/aboutus/person_detail.asp?id=1197

 

Here's more on the subject:

 

...

So facially absurd are the claims here — why would Iran possibly wake up one day and decide that it wanted to engage in a Terrorist attack on U.S. soil when it could much more easily kill Saudi officials elsewhere? and if Iran and its Quds Force are really behind this inept, hapless, laughable plot, then nothing negates the claim that Iran is some Grave Threat like this does — that there is more skepticism expressed even in establishment media accounts than one normally finds about such things. Even the NYT noted — with great understatement — that the allegations “provoked puzzlement from specialists on Iran, who said it seemed unlikely that the government would back a brazen murder and bombing plan on American soil.” The Post noted that “the very rashness of the alleged assassination plot raised doubts about whether Iran’s normally cautious ruling clerics supported or even know about it.” The Atlantic‘s Max Fisher has more on why this would be so out of character for Iran.

But while some attention has been devoted to asking what motive Iran would have for doing this, little attention has been paid to asking what motive the U.S. would have for exaggerating or concocting the connection of Iran’s government to this plot. Aside from the benefits the FBI and DOJ receive when breaking up a “very scary” plot — the bigger, the better — it has been one of Obama’s highest foreign policy priorities to isolate Iran and sanction it further: as a means of placating Israel and punishing Iran for thwarting America’s natural right to rule that region (so monstrous is Iran that, as the U.S. has repeatedly complained, they actually continue to “interfere” in Iraq as well as in Afghanistan!). As Ignatius explains, the U.S. Government instantly converted this plot into a vehicle for furthering those policy ambitions:

With its alleged plot to assassinate the Saudi ambassador to Washington, Iran has handed the United States an opportunity to undermine Tehran at a moment when U.S. officials believe the Iranian regime is especially vulnerable. . . . “We see this as a chance to go out to capitals around the world and talk to allies and partners about what the Iranians tried to do,” the [White House] official said. “We’re not going to tolerate targeting a diplomat in Washington. We’re going to try to use this to isolate them to the maximum extent possible.”

Meanwhile, Joe Biden announced today that the U.S. is “working to unite the world” behind a response to Iran’s “outrageous” actions and that ”nothing has been taken off the table.” So Iran’s supposed involvement in this plot is the ideal weapon for the U.S. to advance its long-standing goals with regard to that country. Maybe that warrants some serious skepticism about whether the U.S. Government’s claims are true? 

...

 

The “very scary” Iranian Terror plot

 

 

...

UPDATE III: A New York Times article today on the Iranian Plot contains this passage:

 

One provocative theory that American officials are considering is that the assassination was intended as retaliation for the killing of several Iranian nuclear scientists during the past two years. Those deaths are widely believed to have been the work of Israel, with tacit American approval, to slow Iran’s progress toward a nuclear weapon.

In a protest letter denying the American charges late Tuesday, Iran’s ambassador to the United Nations, Mohammad Khazaee, referred pointedly to the assassination campaign. “Iran has been a victim of terrorism,” he wrote, “a clear recent example of which is the assassination of a number of Iranian nuclear scientists in the past two years carried out by the Zionist regime and supported by the United States.”

Note that the NYT article references these multiple assassinations of Iranian scientists in order to speculate about a possible motive for Iran to have plotted the attack in Washington (why Iran would target the Saudi Ambassador in order to avenge killings which it (and most others) believe are carried about by Israel and the U.S. is not explained). But what the NYT does not examine is whether this serial killing of Iran’s scientists is, in fact, the work of the U.S. and/or Israel and how that might relate to the American expression of outrage that an assassination would be carried out on American soil. Also worth considering: is Iran correct that whoever is murdering its civilian nuclear scientists is, in fact, engaged in an act of “terrorism”?

The same NYT article notes that “the Obama administration on Wednesday sought to reconcile what it said was solid evidence of an Iranian plot to murder Saudi Arabia’s ambassador to the United States with a wave of puzzlement and skepticism from some foreign leaders and outside experts,” while a separate NYT article – further detailing what a hapless, inept loser is Mansour Arbabsiar — matter-of-factly notes:

On Wednesday, American officials, who say the plot was endorsed by top Iranian authorities, were exploring why the sophisticated Quds Force might have chosen to rely on so amateurish an agent as Mr. Arbabsiar.

Yes, that is indeed quite a mystery. One looks forward to the results of the “exploration” by American officials of this riveting question. Along those lines, Juan Cole has a great post on all of this which should be read in its entirety, but pay particular attention to the concluding paragraph.

 

The LA Times notices the “double standard” on Iran

jrf29's picture
jrf29
Status: Gold Member (Offline)
Joined: Apr 18 2008
Posts: 453
Not convinced? That's OK.

Hi xraymike,

Thanks for answering.  Note that we are not addressing the veracity of any of the evidence contained in the complaint.  It is conceivable that the alleged tapes don't exist, or were fabricated, or that the alleged meetings never occurred, or that the unnamed informant is completely fictional.  That is what a trial is for - to test the evidence publicly.

But here all we are doing is reading a document to see if it says what dissidentvoice.org claims it says (or doesn't say).

After reading the article by dissidentvoice.org, and then after then reading the criminal complaint, you have concluded that the dissident voice presents a clear, balanced, and accurate representation of the evidence contained in the criminal complaint.

There is clearly nothing else that I can say.

xraymike79's picture
xraymike79
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Aug 24 2008
Posts: 2040
jrf29 wrote: Hi
jrf29 wrote:

Hi xraymike,

Thanks for answering.  Note that we are not addressing the veracity of any of the evidence contained in the complaint.  It is conceivable that the alleged tapes don't exist, or were fabricated, or that the alleged meetings never occurred, or that the unnamed informant is completely fictional.  That is what a trial is for - to test the evidence publicly.

But here all we are doing is reading a document to see if it says what dissidentvoice.org claims it says (or doesn't say).

After reading the article by dissidentvoice.org, and then after then reading the criminal complaint, you have concluded that the dissident voice presents a clear, balanced, and accurate representation of the evidence contained in the criminal complaint.

There is clearly nothing else that I can say.

Evidence? What evidence? As I said:

ARBABSIAR does appear "non-committal or perhaps linking the issue to something else," such as profit from a drug deal. As the investigative jounalist stated, there is not a clear  "single quote from Arbabsiar show[ing} that he agreed to assassinating the ambassador, much less proposed it..."

Find me a quote where the FBI target clearly and explicitly states that he wants the Ambassador of Saudi Arabia killed.

I will email the author tonight to hopefully get his response in this matter since his article has appeared all over the internet and you are disparaging it.

jrf29's picture
jrf29
Status: Gold Member (Offline)
Joined: Apr 18 2008
Posts: 453
What are you looking for? A signed confession?

"Find me a quote where the FBI target clearly and explicitly states that he wants the Ambassador of Saudi Arabia killed."

First of all, let's observe that a clear and explicit statement isn't needed to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that a person intended another to be killed. (That's not to say the statements here weren't clear - they were quite clear.)  When Al Capone said to his lieutenant, "I want you to go over to Johnny Stone's house tonight, and I want you to take care of him [wink, wink]," he was not making an innocent statement; he was entering into a conspiracy to commit murder if all the facts and circumstances indicate that is what was meant.

The question is whether dissidentvoice.org was reporting accurately.  Does the criminal complaint, on its face, say what Dissident Voice claims?  Can the complaint truly leave such doubt in the mind of a reader that Arbabsiar was confused, or was non-commital about the whole plan, or was going along with a something that was being forcefully pushed by the informant when he was mainly interested in what he thought was drug deal?  Was Dissidentvoice.org really reporting in good faith when they said that the complaint, on its face, leaves these doubts?

After reading the complaint you are still not convinced that he the knew what he was doing?  You are not convinced that he knew he was ordering a "hit?"  The quotes weren't clear to you?  I mean, what are you looking for?  A signed confession??  Wait a minute . . .

Amended Criminal Complaint wrote:

On or about September 28, 2011, MANSSOR ARBABSIAR, the defendant, flew to Mexico. ARBABSIAR was denied entry into Mexico, and then flew on to John F. Kennedy International Airport, in New York City...After ARBABSIAR exited the plane at JFK, law-enforcement agents arrested ARBABSIAR...and searched...pursuant to a warrant issued by a United States Magistrate Judge.

IV.  ARBABSIAR’S CONFESSION

33. Several hours after his arrest, MANSSOR ARBABSIAR,  a/k/a "Mansour Arbabsiar," the defendant, was advised of his Miranda rights and his right to a speedy presentment.  ARBABSIAR agreed to waive those rights and to speak with law-enforcement agents.  As set forth more fully below in the paragraphs that follow, during a series of Mirandized interviews, ARBABSIAR confessed to his participation in the plot described above.  In particular, and as described more fully below, ARBABSIAR admitted that he had arranged for CS-1 to murder the Ambassador; that he had discussed with CS-1 the means by which CS-1 and his criminal associates would commit the murder; and that he made a down-payment to CS-1 for the murder by causing a total of $100,000 to be deposited in the UC Bank Account.

[ . . . ]

 38.    MANSSOR ARBABSIAR, a/k/a "Mansour Arbabsiar," the defendant, admitted that, while he was in Mexico, he and CS-1 discussed, among other things, a plan to kill the Ambassador by bombing a restaurant the Ambassador frequented, for which CS-1 said he would charge $1.5 million.  ARBABSIAR then returned to Iran from Mexico.

b.     ARBABSIAR stated that the plan was to blow up a restaurant in the United States frequented by the Ambassador and that in light of that plan numerous people, in addition to the Ambassador, could be killed.  This plan was approved.

c.    ARBABSIAR was instructed -to use code words when communicating with SHAKURI . . .

Note (12): The interviews were conducted principally in English. Occasionally, ARBABSIAR spoke in Farsi.  One of the law-enforcement agents who conducted the interviews is fluent in Farsi . . . In addition to providing an oral statement, the defendant signed a typewritten statement admitting to the conduct that forms the basis for the charges herein.

To its credit (or more accurately, saving it from total disgrace) the Dissident Voice article does report briefly that Arbabsiar made a complete confession and subsequently made taped phone calls to his contact in Iran.  But my purpose in drawing your attention to the recorded confession is to dispel any possible remaining doubt that Arbabsiar wasn't being perfectly clear.  If Arbabsiar himself confesses that he intended to purchase a "hit," and that this is what he was talking about, we can be safe in concluding the same.

 

Damnthematrix's picture
Damnthematrix
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Aug 10 2008
Posts: 3998
Riyadh Accuses No Country of Assassination Plot

Saudi Envoy to Iran: Riyadh Accuses No Country of Assassination Plot

TEHRAN (FNA)- Saudi Ambassador to Tehran Osama Bin Ahmad Al-Sanosi dismissed the western media reports alleging that Riyadh has accepted the US accusations against Iran, and stressed that "we will not allow enemies to misuse" the occasion.

Sanosi made the remarks in a meeting with Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Hossein Amir Abdollahian in Tehran on Wednesday, where he underlined his country's enthusiasm for the further development of ties with Iran.

He referred to the official stance of the Saudi foreign ministry on the issue, and said, "Based on this stance, no country has been accused and the official position of Riyadh will be announced after the completion of investigations."

Sanosi also announced Saudi Arabia's readiness to host the Iranian pilgrims in the Hajj season, and said, "We do not allow enemies to misuse (the situation)."

xraymike79's picture
xraymike79
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Aug 24 2008
Posts: 2040
Damnthematrix wrote:
Damnthematrix wrote:

Saudi Envoy to Iran: Riyadh Accuses No Country of Assassination Plot

TEHRAN (FNA)- Saudi Ambassador to Tehran Osama Bin Ahmad Al-Sanosi dismissed the western media reports alleging that Riyadh has accepted the US accusations against Iran, and stressed that "we will not allow enemies to misuse" the occasion.

 

 

Sanosi made the remarks in a meeting with Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Hossein Amir Abdollahian in Tehran on Wednesday, where he underlined his country's enthusiasm for the further development of ties with Iran.

He referred to the official stance of the Saudi foreign ministry on the issue, and said, "Based on this stance, no country has been accused and the official position of Riyadh will be announced after the completion of investigations."

Sanosi also announced Saudi Arabia's readiness to host the Iranian pilgrims in the Hajj season, and said, "We do not allow enemies to misuse (the situation)."

But wait, there's a "confession" by the West's carefully prodded and encouraged drug dealer. I suppose we'll be setting up mentally retarded people next.

xraymike79's picture
xraymike79
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Aug 24 2008
Posts: 2040
A Real Mastermind

And he's a cold-blooded terrorist:

jrf29's picture
jrf29
Status: Gold Member (Offline)
Joined: Apr 18 2008
Posts: 453
Follow the bouncing ball...

Incidentally, xraymike, if your goal is to question Washington's motivations, or Iran's involvement, I think you're missing the bigger picture.

It is a fact that the power structure of the Iranian national government is very decentralized, far more decentralized than the federal government of the U.S.  For example, the judicial branch in Iran has been flexing its political muscles for some time, in defiance of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's policies.

The Revolutionary Guard is a particularly independant force.  Nominally a subdivision of the regular military and under the command of President Ahmadinejad, the Revolutionary Guard is in fact semi-autonomous.  It is reported that the Revolutionary Guard does more or less as it pleases, subject to little real control.

The so-called "Quds Force" is a highly secretive, highly elite unit of the already-autonomous Revolutionary Guard.  Possibly self-funding.

Let's assume that the FBI is correct, and the cousin of a high-ranking Quds official was tasked with arranging a hit on U.S. soil.  How likely is it that the Iranian government even knew about it?  Washington is publicly framing the issue in terms of "Iran."

How much did this reflect the policies of the Iranian government?  Did Mahmoud Ahmadinejad or anybody in his adminstration approve of this?  Did anybody outside of Quds approve of this plan?  Or even know about it?

Also, will the effect of such sanctions do anything to change Iranian government policy, or will they further fragment and radicalize elements in the Iranian government that are already outside of the president's control, and further provoke those radical elements which now exist?  Is it possible that Washington knows this?  What is the larger U.S. game plan, here?

I'm not pretending to answer any of these questions.  My only point is that you should check your sources from time to time.  It will strengthen your arguments, and you won't find yourself in the comical position of attempting to defend authors who are less scrupulous than yourself.

 

 

xraymike79's picture
xraymike79
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Aug 24 2008
Posts: 2040
jrf29 wrote: Incidentally,
jrf29 wrote:

Incidentally, xraymike, if your goal is to question Washington's motivations, or Iran's involvement, I think you're missing the bigger picture.

It is a fact that the power structure of the Iranian national government is very decentralized, far more decentralized than the federal government of the U.S.  For example, the judicial branch in Iran has been flexing its political muscles for some time, in defiance of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's policies.

The Revolutionary Guard is a particularly independant force.  Nominally a subdivision of the regular military and under the command of President Ahmadinejad, the Revolutionary Guard is in fact semi-autonomous.  It is reported that the Revolutionary Guard does more or less as it pleases, subject to little real control.

The so-called "Quds Force" is a highly secretive, highly elite unit of the already-autonomous Revolutionary Guard.  Possibly self-funding.

Let's assume that the FBI is correct, and the cousin of a high-ranking Quds official was tasked with arranging a hit on U.S. soil.  How likely is it that the Iranian government even knew about it?  Washington is publicly framing the issue in terms of "Iran."

How much did this reflect the policies of the Iranian government?  Did Mahmoud Ahmadinejad or anybody in his adminstration approve of this?  Did anybody outside of Quds approve of this plan?  Or even know about it?

Also, will the effect of such sanctions do anything to change Iranian government policy, or will they further fragment and radicalize elements in the Iranian government that are already outside of the president's control, and further provoke those radical elements which now exist?  Is it possible that Washington knows this?  What is the larger U.S. game plan, here?

I'm not pretending to answer any of these questions.  My only point is that you should check your sources from time to time.  It will strengthen your arguments, and you won't find yourself in the comical position of attempting to defend authors who are less scrupulous than yourself.

Some interesting thoughts. However, my opinion on the veracity of the author is unchanged. His point is that the FBI target was likely enticed and cajoled into this fabricated "terrorist plot". He was interested in money from a possible drug deal and not an assassination. He appears to be another hapless individual coaxed and entrapped into becoming another FBI-made terrorist. If you watch the two videos I posted, they bolster that premise.

I will email the author on your opinions to get his thoughts. 

jrf29's picture
jrf29
Status: Gold Member (Offline)
Joined: Apr 18 2008
Posts: 453
Cheerio.

OK.  Cheerio. 

If the author does reply with his thoughts, I am interested.

xraymike79's picture
xraymike79
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Aug 24 2008
Posts: 2040
Another Useful Tool

...

But, hey, the CIA knows they have a gullible jackass in the big house, and they could convince him to believe this fairytale.  So he gets up and rattles his own saber on television. 

And the whole world knows:

1) America is laying the groundwork of fear to ignite a new war, and

2) we are seeking to get our hands on more of that black crude to keep our own fairytale life going a bit longer.

...

Of course, first it will start with sanctions against the ENEMY, and then it will lead to a buildup of military might in the Persian Gulf.  Words will be exchanged, and then we will throw down the gauntlet.  Then the fireworks will begin, and the world will be at war to satisfy our bloodthirsty craving for oil and world domination, and further execution of the Dominorum Christianorum .

...

And, of course, here we go again with the “fear and trembling” rant about terror, a full-throated rant meant to rally the American sheeple around the flagpole yet one more time. It was reported that Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton spoke Wednesday of a “dangerous escalation” of what the U.S. claims is an Iranian pattern of franchising terror abroad. Funny, I thought it was some other BIG country that was franchising terror abroad. And, as a matter of precedent, it has been suggested by at least one expert, Gareth Porter, that such a plot does not fit with the Iranian special forces (Quds) behavior at all.

 

Furthermore, as Gareth Porter goes on to explain, there is evidence from FBI/CIA records to suggest that the meetings between this Iranian-American and the DEA informant (thought to be a Mexican drug dealer) in June and July were for the purpose of selling Iranian-held opium to a Mexican drug cartel, and that the DEA informant led this unwitting Iranian-American down a path (or with CIA urging, simply invented) a plot to assassinate the Saudi ambassador.  But there are no quotes within the FBI/CIA records suggesting that the Iranian-American ever made such a suggestion or request, or represented himself in this regard.  It appears, at this juncture, that the whole thing was an invented FBI sting intended to strengthen the Empire’s hand against Iran, as the walls continue to close in on our libidinous party.  And that a man looking to unload opium from home for a big payday in hard times, got jacked-up and fucked (deliverance style) in the process.  This is a very smelly kettle of fish; and, Nobama Obama just stuck his big fat toe in there to show us he ain’t afraid of no Muslims.

If you stop for just a moment folks and look at the pile of shit that this nation is continuing to create for itself and the world, and you see the discomfort both in the populace and the politicians, you get a real sense that the end is near.  But the charades and the kabuki will not end until the fat-lady sings, I am afraid.

xraymike79's picture
xraymike79
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Aug 24 2008
Posts: 2040
The Iranaian Mr. Magoo

9-15-2011

Drugs, politics and the "Iranian" Mr. Magoo 
 

In the interview and in FBI Account of "Terror Plot" Suggests Sting Operation Inter Press Service 10/13/2011, Gareth suggests another theory of the case in which the defendants were originally working on a drug deal. Reuters also reports on the drugs and Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) aspects of the case in Iran case a sign of drugs agency's new role by Basil Katz 10/14/2011:

 

The case is as notable for the increasing involvement of America's anti-drug agency in national security investigations, including a number of such stings in recent years, as a sign of any new threat from Mexico, security experts and U.S. officials say.

"If you are a member of organized crime ... you are there for a business, your business is not killing people, your business is to transport humans, to sell illegal goods, that's your line of business. Assassination attempts are not what they do for a living," said Alberto Islas, from security consultancy Risk Evaluation.

Jasmin Ramsey in Alleged Iran Terror Plot tied to Mr. Bean, Saudia Arabia, Iraq and Bahrain LobeLog Foreign Policy 10/15/2011 uses "Mr. Bean" instead of "Mr. Magoo" to describe the apparently hapless Mansour Arbabsiar, the Iranian-American indicted in the case and who has provided much of the testimony on which the government's case relies. She also points out that even if the argument for Iranian government involvement in the Arbabsiar case [is not true], it can still serve as longer-term propaganda for war:

Again, the question is not whether Iran is capable of terrorism (because it is) or about Arbabsiar's guilt, but whether the Iranian government was behind an act of international terrorism on U.S. soil. When the media headlines pieces on this case using phrases like "Iran plot" it is going to be remembered by readers as such regardless of the facts presented. The long-term effects of this on the U.S. psyche remain to be seen, but is there enough evidence to even make that claim at this point? This question is particularly important when prominent pundits such as those that pushed for the invasion of Iraq are pushing for a military response to Iran.

She has a point. In the current spate of articles about Iran's acts of international terrorism, the case of the 1994 attack on the AMEA Jewish Community Center in Buenos Aires is routinely cited as a clear instance of it. Even though that was a far more professional and successful act of terror and mass murder than the one Mansour Magoo-Bean is alleged to have cooked up, the evidence linking in to Iran via Lebanese Hizbullah was actually pretty thin. But it has become an accepted fact in American press reporting.

Ramsey also points out the following:

 

Just consider the elaborateness of these allegations: not only did the conspiracy allegedly involve an Iranian assassination plot against a diplomat from Saudi Arabia on U.S. soil, it’s also being tied to the unrest in Bahrain and U.S. losses in Iraq. Thus, the unnamed “cousin,” who Arbabsiar described as a “big general in [the] army,” according to the complaint, is identified in a press release about new OFAC sanctions as Abdul Reza Shahlai — the same man who, as reported by Laura Rozen, was previously designated as the Qods Force deputy commander behind the 2007 raid in southern Iraq by a Shiite militant group that killed five U.S. soldiers. Robert Mackey of the New York Time’s blog The Lede also informs us that Saudi scholar and former royal family adviser Nawaf Obeid told McClatchy that Gholam Shakuri, the other Qods officer behind the alleged plot, was suspected by Saudi intelligence of “fomenting unrest in Bahrain on behalf of Iran’s government.”

So the first conspirator named by Arbabsiar is said to have harmed the U.S. in Iraq, and the second is allegedly behind the protest movement in Bahrain which is ongoing despite the crackdown by Bahrain's ruling family with the help of some 1,500 Saudi and Emirati troops. Could this really be possible? Always. Is it likely or even plausible? Not really.

And though she doesn't single it out, if these stories of their previous exploits are true, do they seem like the sorts who try to carry out such as clumsy scheme as the Arbabsiar plot is described in the government's complaint as being.

It's worth noting that at this point, Arbabsiar is not under indictment in the case. Marcy Wheeler does some informed speculation in Government Remains Mum about When It First Charged Arbabsiar and For What Emptywheel 10/14/2011 based on what she's been able to research on the case. The complaint the Administration publicly announced this past week is an amended complaint. Bmaz is working with her on researching this and found (who says bloggers don't do original reporting?) that there was a previous complaint filed again Arbabsiar "which Chief Judge Loretta Preska had approved having sealed".

I should point out here that speculation is part of any serious analysis of a case like this. The prosecution comes up with a "theory of the case" and defense attorneys try to find any problems in the prosecution's theory and, if feasible, offer an alternative theory of the case in hopes of establishing reasonable doubt about their client's guilt. Outside reporters and researchers don't have the responsibility of prosecutors or defense attorneys to provide zealous advocacy for guilt or innocence. It doesn't mean that someone is pushing a "conspiracy theory" if they are offering plausible alternative theories of the case. There's a point in the video above at about 10.20 where the interviewer Paul Jay asks Gareth Porter about another possible theory of the case, which Gareth explains is not likely in the current case.

In a case like this one where the public story is "so difficult to believe" as Gareth says in that interview, it's especially necessary to test alternative theories as a framework for what we know in the public record. It seems to me that the best alternative version of Arababsiar's case is something like the one that Gareth suggests: Arbabsiar had a contact in Iran with whom he thought he could do a drug deal of some kind. When he wound up contacting a DEA informant who posed as part of Los Zetas drug cartel, the DEA worked with the FBI and the CIA to draw him into this unlikely plot to assassinate the Saudi Ambassador to the US in Washington in a terrorist attack that would have involved multiple deaths.

The largest context is that the Obama Administration has continued the US policy of hostility toward Iran, in part over legitimate concern about Iran's nuclear program. And both Israel and Saudi Arabia are interested in polarizing American and world opinion against Iran. So the uses people make of the charges in this case also have to be understood in that larger foreign policy context.
 

Johnny Oxygen's picture
Johnny Oxygen
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Sep 9 2009
Posts: 1443
yikes

Help my thread has been hijacked by Xraymike

Don't bogart that post my friend.

xraymike79's picture
xraymike79
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Aug 24 2008
Posts: 2040
War and PoliTricks
Johnny Oxygen wrote:

Help my thread has been hijacked by Xraymike

Don't bogart that post my friend.

There's only so many places you can talk about dark politics and war without going into the basement.

xraymike79's picture
xraymike79
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Aug 24 2008
Posts: 2040
 jrf29, I got a response

 jrf29,

I got a response and the answers to your concerns about the dissident voice article are in the following interview released 11 hours ago.

Part 2 with the investigative journalist Gareth Porter goes into detail about those quotes you mentioned and which I tired to explain to you:

The Amended Criminal Complaint can be viewed here: http://www.jdsupra.com/post/documentView...

jrf29's picture
jrf29
Status: Gold Member (Offline)
Joined: Apr 18 2008
Posts: 453
Thank you

Hi xraymike,

Sorry about the delay.  Yes, indeed Porter does go into some more detail here.  Of course, the interview is not really responsive to any of the points I made above, in reference to the written story.  It is largely a retelling of the written story. 

I do note that duing the interview, Porter does not repeat the same error which appears in the written article ("not a single quote from Arbabsiar shows that he agreed to assassinating the ambassador").  In the video interview Porter admits that Arbabsiar agreed to assasinate "the ambassador."  This discrepancy in Porter's comments suggests to me that Porter knew this information all along, making the omission in the written article all the more indicative of either (a) very careless writing, or (b) an attempt to mislead.

I cannot decide whether the cause is (a), or (b).  But cutting in favor of (b) is the following:  During the interview, Porter makes very much of the fact that on July 14 Arbabsiar only said that he wanted "the Ambassador" killed, without saying specifically "the Saudi Arabian Ambassador." 

(Question:  First of all, what is Porter's point here?  Is Porter suggesting that Arbabsiar meant some other ambassador?  Like maybe he really wanted the Swedish Ambassador killed?  I don't see how that would make things any better for Arbabsiar.)

Anyway, to get back to the point, on July 17 we have a second meeting which is a virtual treasure trove of highly incriminating statements, including where Arbabsiar says that it's OK if the whole restaurant is blown up.

Now, immediately after devoting several sentences to the fact that on Thursday all Arbabsiar said that that he wanted "the ambassador" killed, Porter completely ignores the plethora of specific and incriminating quotes From the Sunday meeting.  He doesn't mention them at all.  He only sees fit to mention that "well, it was "suspicious" that he agreed to have a whole restaurant bombed." 

Porter's overall thrust seems to be to imply that the complaint gives flimsy reasons supporting the issuance of criminal charges, and in order to make his case he focuses intently on some evidence and ignores other evidence.  I don't like this type of shifty behavior in my reporters.

But cutting in favor of (a) is the fact that what the complaint says about specific meetings is completely irrelevant, because it betrays a complete ignorance by Porter of the way the justice system works.  The purpose of a criminal complaint application is to establish probable cause that a person is guilty of a specific crime - just enough to begin the trial process.

Once you have submitted enough evidence to hit the basic elements of the crime, it is not good lawyering to offer up more free information.  We can expect that the Justice Department prosecutors (if they graduated from a law school) will include only enough information in the criminal complaint to establish the elements of the crimes charges, and no more.  Once you have offered enough information, you stop.  As did the Justice Department prosecutors here.

If you are a prosecuting attorney, you want to particularly avoid giving many quotes from many different meetings in a way that shows how the investigation developed.  In fact, you may choose to present information in a way that does not reveal where the bulk of the evidence in fact lies.  If Porter had any expertise, even as a courthouse beat reporter in a small town covering misdemeanors, he would probably be aware of this.

__

So, in toto, we have a reporter who (A) misleads his audience about what kind and amount of evidence you would expect to find inside a criminal complaint.  By characterizing the evidence within the complaint as "very extensive" (it's not, and isn't meant to be) and then saying that the lack of certain information is "suspicious," he implies that it ought to be there.  Very unethical or very incompetent.

(B) Porter makes false statements in at least the written article, and in the video interview plays "hide the ball" with the evidence by focusing on some and skimming over other evidence.  Not the kind of professional, impartial, dedicated reporter that I want on my side.

You know that I mostly agree with you about Iran.  But this clown Gareth Porter is one of those people who is a real liability to have on your side.  In my opinion Porter knows perfectly well what he is doing.  But what Porter apparently doesn't realize is that if he wants to really hit home, he should start reporting in favor of the prosecution so that his slipshod methods will discredit that side instead.

Anyway, it was very nice to have the discussion.

 

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.
Login or Register to post comments