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April 19, 2013


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Thank you CTuttle I've been a fan of your writing too!

Cyrus, this poor blogger certainly appreciates all your efforts...! *g*


You make a good point Jay. Normally I would say "Don't attribute to malice what can be explained by mere incompetence" but since we do have a historical precedent of malicious people in high places deliberately and blatantly lying us into one war (remember the "Office of Special Plans"?) then the case for malice is stronger. I'm well aware that these sorts of "think tanks" are actually fronts through which The Official Line gets propogated and legitimized, and are deliberatly used for that purpose (Frances Stonor Saunders has a great book about how for example the Ford Foundation was used by the CIA to fund anti-Soviet intellectuals, some of whom were knowingly complicit in the charade.)

But here is what's most interesting: not a single academic or reporter raised a peep at this report. I'm not talking about the think-tank types or the ones who have been coopted by the establishment and who are just whoring out their PhD in exchange for a "fellowship" and a nice corner office in some leafy campus -- not a single anyone else, not even reporters. It was left to an "amateur" like me. Why is that? Why am I doing other peoples' jobs? Is it because they don't want to rock the boat and upset their own chances of getting one of those positions or similar benefits, or perhaps they're just victims of groupthink and herd mentality, or simply incompetent and simple-minded enough to assume that CEIP wouldnt put out bullshit, or was it merely that no one bothered to read the report and certainly no one thought it necessary to respond to what is really imminently forgettable junk analysis? I'll let you decide.

I enjoyed the rebuttal!

Your rebuttal highlights a subsidiary point that I regularly remind my colleagues when they question the reasons for Iran's deep mistrust of the US and its institutions. Iranian analysts that I have met are bright and deeply tuned into American politics. They suggest that the pretzel logic and twisted reasoning of US institutions (both public and private) with regards to anything related to Iran or Iranian is difficult to reconcile with any motive other than to create an image of Iran that facilitates a future war and regime change. They point out that it is highly improbable for all these institutions to produce messages with the same goal (although all slightly different) by simple chance. They reason that such a coherent message can only be produced if there is an agreement on the overall goal of regime change - although the details of the method and approach may differ.

When a private institute with the "peace" in its name publishes such a report which is so devoid of factual basis - almost along the lines of a piece published by the ministry of propaganda - the only thing surprising would be if Iranians read this and went on to take any statement by their US counterparts as genuine and not loaded with layers of hidden agenda!

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