Opinion

The Great Debate

Can diplomacy prevail with Iran?

By Michael Adler
March 1, 2013

New talks with Iran ended Wednesday with a surprising forward spin. More meetings are planned in the now decade-long American-led effort to ensure the Islamic Republic does not get nuclear weapons.

Iran must now accept or reject a proposal that offers some sanctions relief in return for Tehran’s reducing its stockpile of uranium enriched close to weapon-grade. This hopeful note – Tehran’s reaction was positive – comes as a showdown looms, because Iran continues to inch ever closer to being able to make a nuclear weapon.

In a diplomatic process where expectations are low, the talks in Almaty, Kazakhstan, on Tuesday and Wednesday were considered a success. The United States and its negotiating partners – Britain, China, France, Germany and Russia – got what they wanted. A senior U.S. official said Washington was “not expecting a breakthrough in Almaty.” It was enough, the official said, that the six major powers had the “opportunity to put a new and promising proposal on the table.”

Iran’s chief nuclear negotiator, Saeed Jalili, called the new proposal “more realistic” and, according to one Western diplomat, even carried out a “charm offensive.” Said Jalili, “They tried to bring proximity in some points between the viewpoints of Iran and their own, which we believe is positive, despite the fact that we have a long way to reach the optimum point.” He was also less confrontational during the closing press conference. He did not, for example, present pictures of Iranian scientists allegedly assassinated by a U.S.-Israel covert operation, as he had before.

Western diplomats were cautious, however. The Iranian nuclear crisis has been characterized by rounds of talks that have raised hopes only to end in deadlock, since Iranian and U.S.-led positions fundamentally contradict.

Washington wants Iran to show its good faith by stopping the enrichment of uranium to near 20 percent — a giant leap toward making weapon-grade uranium of more than 90 percent enriched for the U-235 isotope, which favors chain reactions. This so-called confidence-building measure would be followed by talks about Iran’s main stockpile of enriched uranium, which is refined to 5 percent, the level needed for power reactors. If an agreement were reached about this stockpile — which, if enriched further, is currently enough for five nuclear bombs — the West would begin lifting the sanctions that are now crippling Iran’s ability to sell oil and do international business.

But Iran is insisting that sanctions be lifted as a first step, and its right to enrich recognized – before it makes concessions.

The United Nations has indeed called on Iran to suspend enrichment, due to fears that Iran seeks the bomb. Iran insists its program is a peaceful effort to generate electricity and that it has the right to enrich under the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty

The new proposal massages this divide. It calls for “a suspension” of making 20 percent enriched uranium, rather than for closing the key plant where this is done. It also offers some immediate sanctions relief — allowing Tehran to trade in gold and precious metals, for example, which is a way of bypassing currency restrictions imposed under sanctions. These two offers are what led Jalili to say the six negotiating nations were being positive.

This is a step toward compromise by the Iranians. Before, they were insisting that the oil and banking sanctions be lifted immediately.

The next meeting will be of nuclear experts in Istanbul on March 18. There, Iranians will have the opportunity to ask questions about the proposal’s technical details. A second meeting of the senior foreign ministry directors follows in Almaty on April 5-6, when Iran is due to respond to the proposal.

Diplomacy is being revived here, after falling apart when the gulf between the two sides blocked progress last June. Talks were again frozen as the Iranians waited to see who would win the U.S. presidential elections in November.

Obama declared as he began his second term that the window for diplomacy was open. This week’s Kazakhstan meeting signals that it has opened another notch. Secretary of State John Kerry said Wednesday in Paris that Iran, engaging seriously, “could pave the way for negotiations that lead towards a longer-term and comprehensive agreement.”

The problem is that Iran is continuing to move forward with the uranium and plutonium production lines for possible weapons, according to a U.N. nuclear report. It has increased its capacity to make low enriched uranium, and it could increase production quickly for 20 percent-enriched uranium, with enough already stockpiled to be half what it would need to refine into an atomic bomb. Tehran says this 20 percent enriched uranium is for fuel for a research reactor. Iran is also finishing work on a reactor that could produce plutonium.

The fear remains that Iran wants to draw out talks while it develops its nuclear program.

Diplomats have said that Iran was warned that increasing its nuclear program to approach weapon-grade uranium would not be helpful. The Iranians responded that they are already showing self-restraint.

The hope is that Tehran wants to save its economy, which has been crippled by sanctions, and will take a face-saving way out — where it gets to keep some enrichment work. The Almaty meeting shows diplomacy is still alive.

PHOTO (Top): Iran’s Supreme National Security Council Secretary and chief nuclear negotiator Saeed Jalili (2nd R, front) walks down the stairs before talks in Almaty February 26, 2013. REUTERS/Stanislav Filippov/Pool

PHOTO (Insert): Saeed Jalili, Iran’s chief nuclear negotiator, gestures as he arrives for a news conference in Almaty February 27, 2013.  REUTERS/Shamil Zhumatov

Comments
20 comments so far | RSS Comments RSS

You are incorrect, the problem is NOT “that Iran is continuing to move forward with the uranium and plutonium production lines for possible weapons”, but that the US and other European powers continue to act towards Iran in the same manner they have in the past — as colonial powers dictating threats to a wayward colony that is attempting to act as the sovereign nation they really are — thus, what you call “diplomacy” cannot hope to prevail and there is increasing likelihood of war.

Anyone familiar with the history of Iran understands why they — since the overthrow of their US puppet regime back in the 1970s — adamantly refuse to “cooperate” with the US and other European powers.

They remember all too well what we have conveniently forgotten, that it was the European powers that caused them great harm when they were totally defenseless.

It would seem what they are doing now is a wise course of action, not extremist religious dogma, that they refuse to negotiate with nations who cannot negotiate in good faith with them, and have proven this many times over.

Quite simply, they do not intend to become the victim of other nations’ imperialistic designs again. They, at least, are capable of learning from history, whereas the US is incapable of doing so.

THAT is the underlying reason for their supposed intransigence in terms of their drive to become a sovereign nation.

Posted by PseudoTurtle | Report as abusive
 

Iran’s right to enrich uranium will be recognized in the end, just wait and see……

Posted by KyleDexter | Report as abusive
 

@PseudoTurtle,

It’s far from clear why you hate America so much.

Had the world not already been at war with Nazi Germany in the 1940s, your argument would undoubtedly be “that the US and other European powers continue to act towards Germany in the same manner they have in the past — as colonial powers dictating threats to a wayward colony that is attempting to act as the sovereign nation they really are. You and those who find your “perspective” convenient do not comprehend that there are times in the course of human events that it is in the interest(s) of just about everyone this planet for some nations to restrain the unrealistic or adventuristic tendencies of irresponsible leaders of “sovereign nations”.

When Saddam Hussein invaded Kuwait as the first step of putting the boot of the fourth largest military on the planet on the jugular of middle east oil, that was time. When terrorists based and protected in Afghanistan attacked these United States on 9/11, that was time.

No person seriously interested in long term peace is in the slightest interested in Iran’s “feelings”, dignity, or sovereignty” any more than that of Noriega or Gaddafi or Assad. Taken individually these pompous political midgets with delusions of grandeur are only as threatening as the world allows them to be.

The United States is NOT pursuing an “imperialistic agenda” since WW II. Japan, Germany, Italy, Spain and other powers that joined politically and militarily with the Axis Powers are free. Got facts to the contrary?

From our “victories” in Iraq and the “fall” of Gaddafi and the Taliban America has spent billions to make the world safer for everyone and received NOTHING in return. If that’s imperialism, it’s the most incompetent and unprofitable “agenda” in the history of the world.

Incidentally, I was in Iran for a period in 1976. The country was, at that time, graduating their first high school classes of educated students, INCLUDING GIRLS! The people struck me as intelligent, pleasant and friendly. The company I worked for was invited there to present a proposal to build four 200-bed American quality hospitals for Iranian residents of remote areas that medical facilities in their cities could not serve.

The Shah was deposed before that project could proceed. Approaching forty years later NONE of those hospitals have been built. But LOOK at all the military “investment” their so-called “leaders” take such pride in. That theocracy cares about as much for it’s people as North Korea. No wonder that’s the “company” their leaders keep.

Posted by OneOfTheSheep | Report as abusive
 

As long as the United States and Israel have weapons and have encircled Iran with those weapons, Iran has full rights to have one of their own.

When America used the weapons against Japan, not once but two times, vaporizing tens of thousands of innocent Japanese, it was justified. Because they bombed Pearl Harbor. USA nuked Japan with the knowledge that Japan was seeking ways to surrender unconditionally officially. The second nuke was nefariously intended and 100% convictable in the ICC.

And even today America again will not hesitate to use them if there is another Pearl Harbor. America can use the weapons and annihilate people and others cannot? My foot. A sovereign country like Iran WILL USE the same reasoning as America WITH NO ONES APPROVAL.

NUCLEAR BOMBING SHOULD BE REPLIED BY NUCLEAR BOMBING. IT SHOULD BE MUTUAL ANNIHILATION.

Posted by Dhirajkunar | Report as abusive
 

@Dhirajkunar,

The world is well aware that Iran would use a nuclear weapon to annihilate others seeking no one’s approval. That is why we must “deal” even with mad dogs.

Since suicide seems to be your desire, isn’t it a bit presumptuous for you to want the whole world to join you?

Posted by OneOfTheSheep | Report as abusive
 

Iran has lost the right to have nuclear weapons the moment the leaders of its regime called for the annihilation of another state in the Middle East, started meddling in the internal affairs of other Middle Eastern states in a destructive way, and began promoting terrorism.
Ask people in Syria, Lebanon, the Gulf States and Israel what they think of Iran’s leaders, and you’ll get the same answer: -”They are mad dogs”.

Posted by reality-again | Report as abusive
 

@ OneOfTheSheep –

Do you understand ANYTHING about history?

The “facts to the contrary” you demand are there, IF you actually know Iranian history and their relations with the European powers and the US.

—————————-

From Wikipedia, solely for ease of access.

“The ideology of the Islamic Revolution can be summarized as populist, nationalist and most of all Shi’a Islamic.

The Iranian revolution expresses itself in the language of Islam, that is to say, as a religious movement with a religious leadership, a religiously formulated critique of the old order, and religiously expressed plans for the new. Muslim revolutionaries look to the birth of Islam as their model, and see themselves as engaged in a struggle against paganism, oppression, and empire.|Bernard Lewis|[1]

The Iranian Revolution refers to events involving the overthrow of the Pahlavi dynasty under Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, who was supported by the United States and United Kingdom, and its replacement with an Islamic republic under Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, the leader of the revolution.

Demonstrations against the Shah commenced in October 1977, developing into a campaign of civil resistance that was partly secular and partly religious,[9] and intensified in January 1978.[10] Between August and December 1978 strikes and demonstrations paralyzed the country.

The Shah left Iran for exile on January 16, 1979 as the last Persian monarch and in the resulting power vacuum two weeks later Ayatollah Khomeini returned to Tehran to a greeting by several million Iranians.[11][12]

The royal reign collapsed shortly after on February 11 when guerrillas and rebel troops overwhelmed troops loyal to the Shah in armed street fighting.[13][14] Iran voted by national referendum to become an Islamic Republic on April 1, 1979,[15] and to approve a new democratic-theocratic hybrid constitution whereby Khomeini became Supreme Leader of the country, in December 1979.

The revolution was unusual for the surprise it created throughout the world:[16] it lacked many of the customary causes of revolution (defeat at war, a financial crisis, peasant rebellion, or disgruntled military),[17] produced profound change at great speed,[18] was massively popular,[19] and replaced a westernising monarchy with a theocracy based on Guardianship of the Islamic Jurists (or velayat-e faqih). Its outcome—an Islamic Republic “under the guidance of an extraordinary religious scholar from Qom”—was, as one scholar put it, “clearly an occurrence that had to be explained”

Reasons advanced for why the revolution happened and for its populist, nationalist and later Shi’a Islamic character include a conservative backlash against the Westernizing and secularizing efforts of the Western-backed Shah,[21] a liberal backlash to social injustice,[22] a rise in expectations created by the 1973 oil revenue windfall and an overly ambitious economic program, anger over a short, sharp economic contraction in 1977-78,[23] and other shortcomings of the ancien régime.

The Shah’s regime became increasingly oppressive, brutal,[24][25] corrupt, and extravagant.[24][26] It also suffered from basic functional failures that brought economic bottlenecks, shortages and inflation.[27]

The Shah was perceived by many as beholden to — if not a puppet of — a non-Muslim Western power (the United States)[28][29] whose culture was affecting that of Iran.

At the same time, support for the Shah may have waned among Western politicians and media—especially under the administration of U.S. President Jimmy Carter—as a result of the Shah’s support for OPEC petroleum price increases earlier in the decade.[30]

That the revolution replaced the monarchy of Mohammad Reza Shah Pahlavi with Islamism and Khomeini, rather than with another leader and ideology, is credited in part to the spread of the Shia version of the Islamic revival that opposed Westernization and saw Ayatollah Khomeini as following in the footsteps of the beloved Shi’a Imam Husayn ibn Ali and the Shah in the role of Husayn’s foe, the hated tyrant Yazid I.[31]

————————————

In other words, what you saw and interpreted as “progress” was NOT what the Iranian people wanted.

The Iranian people wanted Western dominance and culture out of their country, and saw an opportunity to achieve that goal.

THAT is DEMOCRACY at work, whether you recognize it as such or not, OR whether you agree with their choice or not, since Iran is a SOVEREIGN NATION.

In case you have forgotten, or never understood what it means, democracy “government by the people; a form of government in which the supreme power is vested in the people and exercised directly by them or by their elected agents under a free electoral system”.

The US is embarked on a quasi-religious course to convert the world to “democracy” when we, in fact, have none at home. We are a plutocracy, not a democracy.

Why is it the US preaches “democracy and freedom”, but then actively suppresses it in other nations when they attempt to obtaining?

The reason, obviously, is that it must be the “US brand of democracy” or it doesn’t count.

It is a demonstrable fact that US foreign policy is dedicated to the overthrow of legitimate regimes whenever their policies do not accommodate our global ambitions and to replace them with puppet governments.

The “poster child” of US aggression is Vietnam, which was engaged in a war to free themselves of French colonial rule. In other words, to secure rule of their own nation and achieve freedom for themselves. THAT is an undeniable fact which was suppressed by US government at the time. I find it impossible to believe the usual story that we didn’t understand what we doing and why. The Gulf of Tonkin incident was a manufactured incident to further US interests in SE Asia (i.e. to spread “democracy”, but spelled “capitalism”).

——————————————-

Again, from Wikipedia regarding the Gulf of Tonkin incident:

“In 2005, an internal National Security Agency historical study was declassified; it concluded[7] that the Maddox had engaged the North Vietnamese Navy on August 2, but that there were no North Vietnamese Naval vessels present during the incident of August 4.

The report stated regarding August 2:

At 1505G, Captain Herrick ordered Ogier’s gun crews to open fire if the boats approached within ten thousand yards. At about 1505G, the Maddox fired three rounds to warn off the communist boats. This initial action was never reported by the Johnson administration, which insisted that the Vietnamese boats fired first.[7]

and regarding August 4:

It is not simply that there is a different story as to what happened; it is that no attack happened that night. [...] In truth, Hanoi’s navy was engaged in nothing that night but the salvage of two of the boats damaged on August 2.[8]

————————————-

And then there is the classic Bush 2 “incident’ of “finding WMDs in Iraq”, when the real reason was to remove another US puppet who had become uncontrollable.

———————————–

Those, and many others like them, are the acts of a totalitarian (i.e. imperialistic) empire, which is wrong no matter how you care to look at it.

We are a war-mongering nation driven by the economic demands of our “military-industrial complex”.

THAT is the truth!

Posted by PseudoTurtle | Report as abusive
 

@ OneOfTheSheep –

In terms of Germany, I stated in a previous article (now pulled by Reuters) about the Reichstag fire and its implications that:

You state “Adolf Hitler, leader of the Nazis, elected Germany’s dominant party six months earlier, had exploited the fire – which he claimed was set by a half-blind, disabled, Dutch communist bricklayer – to transform Germany into a militarized dictatorship. This set in motion the Third Reich, World War II, the Holocaust, the destruction of Europe and the deaths of 60 million people, 2.5 percent of the global population.”

What you fail to mention is the backdrop of how Hitler achieved power in Germany, which was due ENTIRELY to the obscene Treaty of Versailles which attempted to fix the entire blame for WWI on Germany alone, thus setting massive “war debt/reparations” payments that Germany could never hope to meet, which was the primary cause of the collapse of the legitimate German government, and sealing the fate of the world to suffer WWII as a consequence.

http://blogs.reuters.com/thinking-global  /2013/02/28/the-reichstag-fire-lessons- for-today/#comment-282

——————————

So, your comments on Germany are equally ignorant of the historical facts of WWII and the reasons for it.

Posted by PseudoTurtle | Report as abusive
 

@ OneOfTheSheep –

What I hate about this nation — in addition to its duplicitous foreign policy that is destroying cultures and destabilizing the world economically to an extent not seen since the British Empire at its height — is its history of extraordinary wealthy greed that has come close to destroying this country many times in the past and is about to do it again. If you care to verify this, it includes at least 47 documented cases of the US wealthy class causing recessions and depressions due to speculation in the markets, which creates speculative bubbles that undermines the economy (just as they have done now).

I hate the US history of Social Darwinism (i.e. survival of the fittest) and its dogma of Manifest Destiny.

————————————–

From Wikipedia:

Themes and influences of Manifest Destiny

Historian William E. Weeks has noted that three key themes were usually touched upon by advocates of Manifest Destiny:

(1) the virtue of the American people and their institutions;
(2) the mission to spread these institutions, thereby redeeming and remaking the world in the image of the United States;
(3) the destiny under God to do this work.[21]

The origin of the first theme, later known as American Exceptionalism, was often traced to America’s Puritan heritage, particularly John Winthrop’s famous “City upon a Hill” sermon of 1630, in which he called for the establishment of a virtuous community that would be a shining example to the Old World.

In his influential 1776 pamphlet Common Sense, Thomas Paine echoed this notion, arguing that the American Revolution provided an opportunity to create a new, better society:

We have it in our power to begin the world over again. A situation, similar to the present, hath not happened since the days of Noah until now. The birthday of a new world is at hand…

Many Americans agreed with Paine, and came to believe that the United States’ virtue was a result of its special experiment in freedom and democracy.

Thomas Jefferson, in a letter to James Monroe, wrote that “it is impossible not to look forward to distant times when our rapid multiplication will expand itself beyond those limits, and cover the whole northern, if not the southern continent”.[22]

To Americans in the decades that followed their proclaimed freedom for mankind, embodied in the Declaration of Independence, could only be described as the inauguration of “a new time scale” because the world would look back and define history as events that took place before, and after, the Declaration of Independence.[23]

It followed that American owed to the world an obligation to expand and preserve these beliefs.

—————————–

I hate the US history of exploitation of its own people, reducing them to near slavery whenever they could by creating working conditions for immigrants that would make Chinese cheap labor look like a vacation. That is documented fact as well.

I hate its self-serving, quasi-religious dogma of “freedom and democracy” when we, in fact, have none here. US history documents what has happened to those who challenged the government and demanded their so-called rights in this democracy. It isn’t a pretty picture.

Finally, but certainly not the least, I hate its newest “religion”, the neocon version of capitalism which is destroying this country and the American people for the sake of further enriching the wealthy class. And which will soon take us back in time the the height of the wealthy class, which was known as the Gilded Age in the late 1800s.

From Reuters itself, here is an article that gives an accurate picture of what the wealthy elite in this nation are really like. No doubt you will disagree, but again it is factual information, not wealthy “koolaid”.

http://blogs.reuters.com/chrystia-freela nd/2013/03/01/the-political-clout-of-the -superrich/

The list of economic and human abuses in this self-righteous nation is far too long to document in this venue. This is but a thumbnail sketch of who and what we really are.

We have an opportunity to change ALL of this, but by remaining in total ignorance and complacency we choose not to do so — and THAT is what I hate most about this country.

Posted by PseudoTurtle | Report as abusive
 

@ OneOfTheSheep –

This was our final exchange in the Reichstag fire article, which Reuters pulled before you had a chance to read it.

I reproduce it here for you now, and it represents my final position about our exchange of comments.

—————————————

Feb 28, 2013
8:13 pm UTC

@ OneOfTheSheep –

Are you serious?

Your comment is not worth a reply.
Posted by PseudoTurtle | Report as abusive

Feb 28, 2013
10:12 pm UTC

@PseudoTurtle,

You speak only for yourself, and your silly rants against the “wealthy elite” sound peculiarly like those of OWC against “the 1%”, a “sound bite” of disproportionate effect and longevity far beyond it’s patent distortion of reality.

I offer personal opinions based on 72 year’s life experience and observation for others to believe (or not) as compared with their own. Those opinions either stand or fall on their own, and their popularity concerns me much less than their “truth” content. The latter is fair measure of credulity.

So, yes, I’m QUITE “serious”. I “care” and so I write. Time and the continuing flow of human events will be the ultimate judge of “right” or “wrong”, and there is no appeal from that forum.
Posted by OneOfTheSheep | Report as abusive

Mar 1, 2013
5:36 pm UTC

@ OneOfTheSheep –

It is unfortunate that I seem to only “speak only for myself”, cursed like Cassandra so that my predictions would not be believed.

In spite of this, I would like to think my comments comprise a ‘“sound bite” of disproportionate effect and longevity’, but they are far from being a “patent distortion of reality”.

I too “offer personal opinions based on (71) year’s life experience and observation for others to believe (or not) as compared with their own”.

However, you state that “those opinions either stand or fall on their own, and their popularity concerns me much less than their “truth” content. The latter is fair measure of credulity”, which is where we begin to differ.

My opinions are backed up by demonstrable historical fact, as well as an education that includes extensive knowledge of the subject matter I am presenting — I am a retired CPA, MBA who has worked very closely with these “wealthy elite” for several decades in the high tech industry as a Plant Controller and Finance Manager for international corporations (which gives me “insider information” on how they think), plus a personal passion for economics and European history, especially as to how the two relate to the economic/political events that transpired during the early 20th century and its prima facie effects on the economic/political situations of today — that obviously goes far beyond what you are capable of understanding.

Apparently, what you don’t understand frightens you and thus you respond to my comments with meaningless rants that are far from “silly”, but represent a danger to this nation.

I, too, am quite serious, but why I care at this point and continue to write I cannot hope to explain to you.

You are indeed correct that “time and the continuing flow of human events will be the ultimate judge of “right” or “wrong”, and there is no appeal from that forum.”, which is really the point I am attempting to make from my “quasi-hindsight”. Those who reject what I say will face the consequences, for little can be done to me anymore.

OOTS, on a personal note, I have made many attempts to reason with you, but we are universes apart and there is no point in replying to any of your personal rants.

From now on, IF I choose to continue writing, which is becoming more and more unlikely, since there is little time and it obviously serves no useful purpose, I will ignore any more of your personal attacks on me as not being worth my time or effort to reply.
Posted by PseudoTurtle | Report as abusive

Posted by PseudoTurtle | Report as abusive
 

Iran will be to American global military empire what ancient Parthia was to the Roman Empire.

The historical parallels are striking and eerie. And the outcomes for the USA, as contemporary would-be Rome, will probably be as well.

It’s a joy to see history replay so closely what it already rehearsed well over 2,000 years ago. Brings to mind Santayana’s famous observation: “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”
Or, Ecclesiastes (1:9): “What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun.”

One might as well stop reading the news.
It’s the same warmed-over crap over and over and over again.

At some point, I suppose, something large will come crashing down out of the sky and puts an end to our bloody silly mess.

Posted by jrpardinas | Report as abusive
 

@PseudoTurtle,

A “…retired CPA, MBA who has worked very closely with these “wealthy elite” for several decades in the high tech industry as a Plant Controller and Finance Manager for international corporations (which gives me “insider information” on how they think)…” is a glorified bean-counter. Your posts clearly show that you have never received or exercised the power you feel your “due”. I suggest you accept that, and quit blaming the world at large.

It is obvious that for you education was the “pail filled” and not the “fire lit”. Your “…personal passion for economics and European history…” is strangely lacking the attention to detail necessary before meaningful understanding and comment is possible.

In your 03/02 5:05 UTC post you state that Reuters “pulled” their commentary on the Reichstag fire. No so. It’s still up. You accused me thusly: “You state Adolph Hitler…”. No so. Those words were from the Frederick Kempe article itself. No one builds credulity with sloppy research and unfounded accusations.

Your “…attempts to reason…” with me were initially appreciated and effective in that I gave though to offering some guidance as to why your “predictions” are simply not credible. So yes, I would even try to assist a worthy but frustrated opponent with whom I disagree.

But there is little incentive to do so once it is apparent that another’s fundamental beliefs and motivations are “off the deep end”. I do not know you as a person, and so would never “attack” you personally.

When you enter an arena without having “all your ducks in line” (or even all present) those who call attention to such are not attacking YOU. When you post nonsense as fact it should not come as a surprise when others challenge your half-truths and lack of clear logic with facts and the WHOLE truth.

It’s more like someone trying to find a tactful way to let you know when your zipper is open in public. They want to save you (and others present) further embarrassment.

If you would persuade with words, you must be prepared to defend those (and thoughts). As the saying goes, “May my words be tender and sweet, for some day I may find myself obligated to eat them.”

For the record, I freely admit that what I “don’t understand” is almost infinite. Not only does that not frighten me, it helps me to focus on that which seems clear that I would share. I suggest you try that.

Posted by OneOfTheSheep | Report as abusive
 

@ OneOfTheSheep

Refer your reply to me. So you say US and Europe, only have the right to use the “bomb”? No one else? My logic is simple. If you have the bomb to kill me, I too should have the same bomb that you have to kill you. Its as simple as that. I may say so many things like Israel should not exist blah blah but if you think that you can use “the bomb” against me, I will make sure I have one too.

Posted by Dhirajkunar | Report as abusive
 

@ OneOfTheSheep –

Attempting to dismiss me as a bean counter demonstrates how little you understand what I have revealed to you about my background and experience.

I did this only after you chose to reveal your age and “personal experience” as the basis of the “universal truths” you reveal to the world. There is no substance to your pronouncements, and much of it self-contradictory.

As usual, what you clearly do not understand you attempt to dismiss with mumbo jumbo statements like “It is obvious that for you education was the “pail filled” and not the “fire lit”. Your “…personal passion for economics and European history…” is strangely lacking the attention to detail necessary before meaningful understanding and comment is possible.”

It is a fact that personal opinions offered without substantiation remain just that, and totally worthless in this context. You are a prolific commentator, but I have never once seen you back up one of your opinions with demonstrable facts, nor any indication that you have even read, much less understand, those I have included in my commentaries.

Obviously, you lack the education and experience to back up the tripe you dish out when you consistently attack my comments. And that which you do not understand, you attack because it frightens you.

Which puts the lie to your statements above that you would never attack me personally. ALL of your comments to me are written as personal attacks, with the sole intention of undermining what I am trying to say.

Frankly, I am tired of your continuous personal attacks, then attempting in good faith to answer your comments logically, only to have you diss or ignore my replies in a never-ending cycle of worthless screed from you.

It is curious that your “advice” to me is exactly that which you should take yourself.

In this latest exchange, I simply wanted to be sure that you had the opportunity to read my final comment to you (and, yes, the article had been pulled when I wrote the comment).

Clearly, your comments are not worthy of my time and I have run out of patience with your rambling inanities.

I have decided that this WILL be my last reply to you.

No doubt you will be stupid enough to continue to heckle me, but I will not dignify your comments with a response.

Posted by PseudoTurtle | Report as abusive
 

@PseudoTurtle,

When I quoted your words and described you as a “glorified bean counter”, that was a personal opinion. I’m entitled to mine just as you are entitled to yours.

You have expressed, at times, less than flattering opinions as to me and my intelligence. No big deal. It “goes with the territory” here on the internet. The sun still comes up the next morning.

The “Reichstag” article I referred to as evidence of your sloppy research is still front and center on Reuters. There is only your unsubstantiated claim that it was ever “pulled”. My statement that the article is still up was a fact easily “demonstrable” by anyone for themselves. Your claim it was “pulled by Reuters” isn’t.

Your attribution of the words of another to me of words by another simple fact easily verified. So what you can’t answer you ignore?

I read what interests me, as do you. I don’t have to account to you. I leave it to others to judge my comprehension of issues I embrace here.

In the “Reichstag” thread, you admitted “It is unfortunate that I seem to only ‘speak only for myself’, cursed like Cassandra so that my predictions would not be believed.” It would appear you have somehow become your own worst enemy. This is usually the result of engaging one’s mouth (or keyboard fingers) before engaging one’s brain.

One cannot be a tenacious advocate of ideas and opinions without irritating others. Anyone posting opinions I deem misleading or simply wrong I tend to challenge publicly. It isn’t personal.

That huge bubbling cauldron of hatred for America you have steadily filled and made part of you I find quite frightening. But when you and I “sing from the same song book”, as on illegal immigration, “the enemy of my enemy is my friend”.

Posted by OneOfTheSheep | Report as abusive
 

Correction:

Should have been “Your attribution of the words of another to me is simple fact easily verified.”

Sorry.

Posted by OneOfTheSheep | Report as abusive
 

@PseudoTurtle, you are spot on with your quotes and comments. Bravo!!!

Posted by KyleDexter | Report as abusive
 

@OneoftheSheep, Iran was graduating high school students long before 1976. Iran is now one of the most highly educated societies in the world, and the government their does invest in education. But I guess you are just the typical American, thinking that every place outside of our borders is nothing but a wasteland. There is a whole world out there, and alot of people are smarter than we are!

Posted by KyleDexter | Report as abusive
 

Did Jay Leno or Letterman pose that question as part of their monologues ?

Posted by Willie12345 | Report as abusive
 

The short answer? NO. The long answer? NNNNOOO. The Iranians, justifiably, hate americas guts and don’t care what position america takes. They hold the upper hand and plan to continue that position.

Posted by ErnestPayne | Report as abusive
 

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