Blogroll Me! How This Old Brit Sees It ...: February 2006

26 February 2006

Lifting The Lid Off The Iraq Mosque Dome Debacle ...

Forced to the flamin' floor, fast - with only the faintest flick of that fabled feather duster -- that's what we were this morning [virtualy speaking of course], when the pair of us paid our daily visit to peruse the blog pages of Wolcott.

Especially, since several hours earlier we'd been engaged in rather heated international, online discussion regarding the top recently being blown right off much more than a mere mosque in Iraq. And maybe more to the point, we'd wondered [much more than aloud] who the hell had been low down dirty enough, to have dunnit.

Now enter Wolcott and scroll south to 'Shattered Dome,' to see some more.

Shattered Dome

Posted by James Wolcott

Here's what I don't get about the Golden Dome mosque bombing. That, once overtaken, the guards were tied up.

That eats up the clock when you're in a hurry and it spares lives, not exactly the M.O. of Al Qaeda, which tends to be more throat-cuttingly swift and savage. Al Qaeda and its affiliates are also not shy about claiming bragging rights for their crimes and atrocities, yet no one so far has taken awful credit for this desecration.

Most odd ......

Hmmm. Hardly anything thing there we'd want to argue with - although, to we two old ombres, 'odd' appears almost an understatement in this incidence.

However, J.W. then proceeded to point the pair of us, along with thousands more of his faithful followers, in the direction of Dahr Jamail's Iraq Dispatches.

But before you bugger off from here to there, here's one of our traditional teasers.

The horrific attack which destroyed much of the Golden Mosque generated sectarian outrage which led to attacks on over 50 Sunni mosques. Many Sunni mosques in Baghdad were shot, burnt, or taken over. Three Imams were killed, along with scores of others in widespread violence.

This is what was shown by western corporate media.

As quickly as these horrible events began, they were called to an end and replaced by acts of solidarity between Sunni and Shia across Iraq.

This, however, was not shown by western corporate media.

“It was not the Sunnis who attacked the shrine of Imam Al-Hadi, God’s peace be upon him, but rather the occupation [forces] and Ba’athists…God damn them. We should not attack Sunni mosques. I ordered Al-Mahdi Army to protect the Shi’i and Sunni shrines.”

Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the supreme leader of Iran, urged Iraqi Shia not to seek revenge against Sunni Muslims, saying there were definite plots “to force the Shia to attack the mosques and other properties respected by the Sunni. Any measure to contribute to that direction is helping the enemies of Islam and is forbidden by
sharia.”Instead, he blamed the intelligence services of the U.S. and Israel for being behind the bombs at the Golden Mosque.

British Prime Minister Tony Blair stated that those who committed the attack on the Golden Mosque “have only one motive: to create a violent sedition between the Sunnis and the Shiites in order to derail the Iraqi rising democracy from its path.”

Well said Mr. Blair, particularly when we keep in mind the fact that less than a year ago in Basra, two undercover British SAS soldiers were detained by Iraqi security forces whilst traveling in a car full of bombs and remote detonators.
Hmmm, yet again. And that's our own understatement for the day.

Before we forget, it's only fair to say that our own suspicions, discussions and conclusions as explained at the outset, finally ended with both This Old Brit and his dear Dr Watson wannabe Richard, agreeing unanimously.

We had previously put together all the puzzle pieces -- and quite correctly, we claim. All the clues were already there of course. Just as they are right now, peppered about this page, in pictures. But for the benefit of any still struggling to see 'the big picture' we'll simply say what lays below, then leave you to sort it out for yourself.

So, let's list our own cryptic little pics, kind of like like crossword clues. Okay?

U.K. -- S.A.S -- ( S.B.S ?)
U.S.A. -- Black Ops -- ( Seals? C.I.A.?)
Israel -- MOSSAD -- ( I.D.F.? )

And for our parting shot -cum- last clue -- did you ever read that other old Brit Agatha Christie's book [or see the film] 'Murder On The Orient Express'? You know, that's the one with the truly terrific twist in the tale -- the one with the super-surprise ending.

Remember? It turned out -- they ALL damned well dunnit.

22 February 2006

US Ports And The UAE Aren't As Alarming As Iran And WWW3 ...

If you're among those currently creating such an almighty outcry about the United Arab Emirates and operations of some American sea ports, perhaps you should pay particular attention and attach even more importance to today's This Old Brit blog-post than you might usually do. Then pause and prioritize. Which is worse and which matters most -- UAE or WW3 ?

Think on this. When Albert Einstein was asked whether or not he thought the nightmare scenario of fighting a nuclear war would ever become reality, he said he wasn't sure.

But he went on to add that of one thing he was certain; if such a terrible thing was ever allowed to happen, then any wars thereafter would be fought with bows and arrows.

Well, we [for two] wouldn't dare [nor even dream of daring to] argue with such a universally acknowledged & acclaimed, genuine genius. Would you?

Especially, since siding against such super-intelligence would mean putting you life were your mouth was -- and risking your own continued existence along with that of many millions more -- including every single soul you personally hold near and dear.

Okay, enough of us for now. Next, get your head around an excellent article recently written by Heather Wokusch and published by 'Smirking Chimp'.

Read, learn and inwardly digest. And pray that enough of all our politicians -- be they left, right or centre -- may be made to do the same. Be they Christian, Muslim or Jew -- because hell doesn't differentiate.

Heather Wokusch:

'WWIII or bust: Implications of a US attack on Iran'

Date: Tuesday, February 21 @ 10:13:16 EST -- Topic: War & Terrorism

"This notion that the United States is getting ready to attack Iran is simply ridiculous... Having said that, all options are on the table." George W. Bush, February 2005

Witnessing the Bush administration's drive for an attack on Iran is like being a passenger in a car with a raving drunk at the wheel.

Reports of impending doom surfaced a year ago, but now it's official: under orders from Vice President Cheney's office, the Pentagon has developed "last resort" aerial-assault plans using long-distance B2 bombers and submarine-launched ballistic missiles with both conventional and nuclear weapons.

How ironic that the Pentagon proposes using nuclear weapons on the pretext of protecting the world from nuclear weapons. Ironic also that Iran has complied with its obligations under the Non-Proliferation Treaty, allowing inspectors to "go anywhere and see anything," yet those pushing for an attack, the USA and Israel, have not.

( snip )

Consider that many in the US and Iran seek religious salvation through a Middle Eastern blowout. "End times" Christian fundamentalists believe a cataclysmic Armageddon will enable the Messiah to reappear and transport them to heaven, leaving behind Muslims and other non-believers to face plagues and violent death. Iran's new Shia Islam president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, subscribes to a competing version of the messianic comeback, whereby the skies turn to flames and blood flows in a final showdown of good and evil. The Hidden Imam returns, bringing world peace by establishing Islam as the global religion.

Both the US and Iran have presidents who arguably see themselves as divinely chosen and who covet their own country's apocalypse-seeking fundamentalist voters. And into this tinderbox Bush proposes bringing nuclear weapons.

As expected, the usual suspects press for a US attack on Iran. Neo-cons who brought us the "cakewalk" of Iraq want to bomb the country. There's also Defense Secretary Rumsfeld, busy coordinating the action plan against Iran, who just released the Pentagon's Quadrennial Defense Review calling for US forces to "operate around the globe" in an infinite "long war." One can assume Rumsfeld wants to bomb a lot of countries.

( second snip )

Attacking Iran could also tip the scales towards a new geopolitical balance, one in which the US finds itself shut out by Russia, China, Iran, Muslim countries and the many others Bush has managed to piss off during his period in office. Just last month, Russia snubbed Washington by announcing it would go ahead and honor a $700 million contract to arm Iran with surface-to-air missiles, slated to guard Iran's nuclear facilities.

And after being burned when the US-led Coalition Provisional Authority invalidated Hussein-era oil deals, China has snapped up strategic energy contracts across the world, including in Latin America, Canada and Iran. It can be assumed that China will not sit idly by and watch Tehran fall to the Americans. Russia and China have developed strong ties recently, both with each other and with Iran. Each possesses nuclear weapons, and arguably more threatening to the US, each holds large reserves of US dollars which can be dumped in favor of euros. Bush crosses them at his nation's peril.

Immensely interesting & illuminating information, eh? Surprised you've not seen nor heard much more about 'the real world' lately ? Like, for maybe quite a few years ? Then thank Fox News, Rupert Murdoch and the present proliferation of press prostitutes, etc.

Well, whatever -- but don't despair completely. There's still some time left for our [laughingly labeled] leaders to see some sense. But it's us -- yep, that means you and me -- who need to nudge them in the right direction. But only after having rudely awakened the somnambulistic shower of simpletons [and shysters & so on] in the first place.

Right then. Here's your last peek, pinched directly from this immensely informative & important, Heather Wokusch piece.

.... That's the worst-case scenario, but even the best case doesn't look good. Let's say the Bush administration chooses the UN Security Council over military power in dealing with Iran. That still leaves the proposed oil bourse, along with the economic fallout that will occur if OPEC countries snub the greenback in favor of petro-euros. At the very least, the dollar will drop and inflation could soar, so you'd think the administration would be busy tightening the nation's collective belt.

But no. The US trade deficit reached a record high of $725.8 billion in 2005, and Bush & Co.'s FY 2007 budget proposes increasing deficits by $192 billion over the next five years. The nation is hemorrhaging roughly $7 billion a month on military operations in Afghanistan and Iraq, and is expected to hit its debt ceiling of $8.184 trillion next month.

So the white-knuckle ride to war continues, with the administration's goals in Iran very clear. Recklessly naïve and impetuous perhaps, but clear: stop the petro-euro oil bourse, take over Khuzestan Province (which borders Iraq and has 90% of Iran's oil) and secure the Straits of Hormuz in the process. As US politician Newt Gingrich recently put it, Iranians cannot be trusted with nuclear technology,
and they also "cannot be trusted with their oil.

"But the Bush administration cannot be trusted with foreign policy. Its military adventurism has already proven disastrous across the globe. It's incumbent upon each of us to do whatever we can to stop this race towards war.

Read the rest of this riveting report 'WWIII or bust: Implications of a US attack on Iran'

Also highly recommend reading, are these two related reports via the Washington Post.

West may have to live with low-level Iranian atom work

China Rushes to Complete $100B Deal With Iran

** Please pass this page on, as it may in it's own small way help save lots of lives -- including your own and those of your loved ones.

17 February 2006

UN Statement On United States' State Sanctioned Inhumanity Towards Man - via Torture ...

What follows is for the benefit of all those who aren't yet fully aware of the civilised world's view of America's inhumanity towards man.

This Old Brit and Richard have highlighted several key sections and rearranged 'white spaces' paragraphwise to facilitate easier reading.

In all other respects, this is IT verbatum: the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth -- straight from the horses mouth.

****** For use of imformation media: ******

UNITED NATIONS ~ Press Release



16 February 2006

The following statement was issued today by the Chairman Rapporteur of the Working Group on Arbitrary Detention, Leila Zerrougui; Special Rapporteur on the independence of judges and lawyers, Leandro Despouy; the Special Rapporteur on torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment, Manfred Nowak; the Special Rapporteur on freedom of religion or belief, Asma Jahangir, and the Special Rapporteur on the right of everyone to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health, Paul Hunt:

Five independent investigators of the United Nations Commission on Human Rights are calling on the United States to close immediately the detention centre in Guantánamo Bay and bring all detainees before an independent and competent tribunal or release them.The call comes in a report published today following an 18-month joint study by the experts into the situation of detainees at that United States Naval Base.

The report's findings are based on information from the United States Government, interviews conducted by the experts with former Guantánamo Bay detainees currently residing or detained in France, Spain and the United Kingdom and responses from lawyers acting on behalf of some current detainees. It also relies on information available in the public domain, including reports prepared by non-governmental organizations (NGOs), information contained in declassified official United States documents and media reports.

The experts expressed regret that the Government did not allow them the opportunity to have free access to detainees in Guantanamo Bay and carry out private interviews, as provided by the terms of reference accepted by all countries they visit.The five experts – specializing in issues related to arbitrary detention, freedom of religion, the right to health, torture and the independence of judges and lawyers – conclude that the persons held at Guantánamo Bay are entitled to challenge the legality of their detention before a judicial body and to obtain release if detention is found to lack a proper legal basis.

The continuing detention of all persons held at Guantánamo Bay amounts to arbitrary detention, they state, adding that – where criminal proceedings are initiated against a detainee – the executive branch of the United States Government operates as judge, prosecutor and defence counsel in violation of various guarantees of the right to a fair trial. According to the experts, attempts by the United States Administration to redefine "torture" in the framework of the struggle against terrorism in order to allow certain interrogation techniques that would not be permitted under the internationally accepted definition of torture are of utmost concern. The confusion with regard to authorized and unauthorized interrogation techniques over the last years is particularly alarming.

The interrogation techniques authorized by the Department of Defense, particularly if used simultaneously, amount to degrading treatment. If in individual cases, which were described in interviews, the victim experienced severe pain or suffering, these acts amounted to torture as defined in article 1 of the Convention against Torture. Furthermore, the general conditions of detention, in particular the uncertainty about the length of detention and prolonged solitary confinement, amount to inhuman treatment and to a violation of the right to health as well as a violation of the right of detainees to be treated with humanity and with respect for the inherent dignity of the human person.

They add that force-feeding of competent detainees violates the right to health as well as the ethical duties of any health professionals who may be involved. Among their recommendations, the experts say terrorism suspects should be detained in accordance with criminal procedure that respects the safeguards enshrined in relevant international law. Accordingly, the United States Government should either expeditiously bring all Guantánamo Bay detainees to trial or release them without further delay.

They also call on the Government to close down the Guantánamo Bay detention centre and to refrain from any practice amounting to torture or cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment, discrimination on the basis of religion, and violations of the rights to health and freedom of religion. The investigators also request full and unrestricted access to the Guantánamo Bay facilities, including private interviews with detainees. Consideration should also be given to trying suspected terrorists before a competent international tribunal.

Chronology leading up to report: The five mandate holders have been following the situation of detainees held at the United States Naval Base at Guantánamo Bay since January 2002. In June 2004, the Annual Meeting of special rapporteurs/representatives, experts and chairpersons of working groups of the special procedures and the advisory services programme of the Commission on Human Rights, decided that they should continue this task as a group because the situation concerns each of their mandates.

In studying the situation, they have continuously sought the cooperation of the United States authorities. They sent a number of letters requesting the United States Government to allow them to visit Guantánamo Bay in order to gather first hand information from the prisoners themselves.

By letter dated 28 October 2005, the Government of the United States of America extended an invitation for a one-day visit to three of the five mandate holders, inviting them "to visit the Department of Defense's detention facilities [of Guantánamo Bay]". The invitation stipulated that "the visit will not include private interviews or visits with detainees".

In their response to the Government dated 31 October 2005, the mandate holders accepted the invitation, including the short duration of the visit and the fact that only three of them were permitted access, and informed the US Government that the visit was to be carried out on 6 December 2005.

However, they did not accept the exclusion of private interviews with detainees, as that would contravene the terms of reference for fact-findings missions by special procedures and undermine the purpose of an objective and fair assessment of the situation of detainees held in Guantánamo Bay. In the absence of assurances from the Government that it would comply with the terms of reference, the mandate holders decided on 18 November 2005 to cancel the visit.

Click here for direct link to this UN press release/statement.

**** For use of information media;


12 February 2006

Everything You Ever Wanted To Know About Patrick Fitzgerald - But Were Afraid To Ask ...

Every once in a while comes along someone exceedingly special, and seemingly such a man is US special prosecutor, Patrick Fitzgerald.

Sometimes, something other than a living breathing person prompts similar proclamations of the same sort of super-star status. Something as simple as a Sunday magazine article for instance. Like this one put together by Paul Harris and published in this weekend's Observer Magazine, then heralded by the headers highlighted hereunder.

Saint Patrick's day

He is the relentless scourge of mobsters, terrorists, corrupt city bosses and even the White House.

Paul Harris profiles Patrick Fitzgerald, the tenacious workaholic special prosecutor, who gives George Bush sleepless nights, and who has now turned his sights on the former Telegraph tycoon Conrad Black

If that's interesting enough initially to imply it sounds like a story not be missed by any mind worthy of being equated with the word enquiring, then please bear with This Old Brit. Well at least for a little bit, and join him in a giant yet truly temporary leap from the opening paragraph to the closing one.

Okay? Then what are we waiting for? Let's go.

If so, he might want to consider a saying from the French essayist Charles Peguay: 'The honest man must be a perpetual renegade.'

Alright already, he hears you and he holds his hands up. It's a fair cop, guv. This Old Brit's just jumped the gun -- but justifiably he believes - even if for purely personal reasons. Y'see, This Old Brit likes to believe that when Peguay spoke as he did of honest men, he had people such as his old self and co-renegade Richard in his thoughts.

But let's get back to business. Cast your eyes across this cut & pasted chunk of compelling copy.

Few Chicagoans would recognise Patrick Fitzgerald on his jogs. The same cannot be said of some of the most powerful, the most violent and the most deadly people in the world. To them, he is clearly a dangerous man. For Fitzgerald has carved out a career in American law enforcement that has earned him the nickname 'The Untouchable', after the legendary Chicago lawman Eliot Ness.

It is a good comparison - like Ness, Fitzgerald is ruthless and unrelenting. But unlike Ness, who put Al Capone behind bars, Fitzgerald's enemies go far beyond Chicago gangsters.

They stretch from the caves of Afghanistan to the corridors of the White House. They include the Gambino mob family; the blind sheikh Omar Abdel-Rahman, who masterminded the bombing of the World Trade Center in 1993; Osama bin Laden, and a generation of Chicago politicians, bloated on a culture of corruption that Fitzgerald is seeking to eradicate.

Now, they also include the Bush administration .....

So as not to spoil things too much we're stopping short of selecting any more extracts -- since this most positively is a must read piece. Whether you know little or lots about Fitzgerald, we feel sure you'll finish up furnished with much more knowledge if you take the time & trouble to read the rest of this remarkable resume for yourself. And when you have, we wager you won't want to argue that it wasn't well worth your while.

For this certainly is a story to savour, and if ever there were genuinely cracking 'keepers' - then this is one of them.

Well, we honestly ask ya, would we two old codgers ever con ya ?

Here's the link -- you'll love it.,,1707291,00.html

08 February 2006

Elections ? The Blair Regime Don't Need No Steenkin' Elections ...

What will it take to get through to those trusting souls who still think Britain is a free country, with an elected government ruling by consent via a cabinet of ministers, headed by a first-among-equals' Prime Minister -- and what will it take to awaken said souls from their innocent slumbers?

Might a BBC headline such as follows at least sound some alarm bells, somewhere?

Council polls could be scrapped

The elections could make way for reform plans

Next year's local elections in England could be abandoned under plans being considered by the government, the BBC has learned.

Well, This Old Brit certainly hopes that before the next day is done, alarm bells aplenty are pealing -- loud and clear, and all over this land.

Now, pick your bottom jaw back up from the floor, pop both eyes back into their sockets and then feast them on this.

Whitehall officials have told council chiefs they are considering cancelling the May 2007 polls because of possible plans for a local government shake-up.

What ? Whitehall officials? Which effing Whitehall officials?

Neither This Old brit nor Richard remember electing any Whitehall officials -- ever. Nor does anyone else we've canvassed today. The truth is, all Whitehall officials are unelected officals. Not to put too fine a point on it, they're really no more than the hired help.

And yet these shadowy, expensive Saville Row-suit-clad cretins deign to 'consider' such spectacularly special events as the erradication of the people's elections.

Whether local or national and whether allegedly, merely temporarily or not is quite beside the bloody point. The truth be told, this whole idea almost defies belief -- even under Bush's poodle-boy Tony Blair's New Labour regime.

The thin end of the wedge? Naw! Never. 'Fraid not friends.

That came and went quite a while back.

And those of us who've been permanently paying attention not only noticed, but we ruddy well "told you so". Well, be honest now, we did, didn't we?

And to think that so many of the more astute among us on both sides of the Atlantic have recently begun remarking [rather regularly], regarding the increasing possibility of suspensions of some elections -- sometime soon -- on the strength of one government manufactured pretext or another.

Good gawd, imagine the implications. If the Bliar can get away with something like this with such a belligerent bunch as we Brits over here, then Americans should forget about any further Diebold doubts or worries -- because Bush probably won't damn well need Diebold any more.

Strewth! This Old Brit and Richard can sense some sort of super-swearing-seizure sneaking up on us. So, while we cool down via a break for blood pressure checks, you can read the full BBC report from the comfort of your own -- erm, whatever it is you personally still possess that you continue to be able to claim to call comfortable.

But to help set the scene you can expect to encounter, when the BBC site you eventually enter, first get a good gander at this.

Minister David Miliband says there has been no decision on council reform and he intends the 2007 polls to go ahead.

But Conservatives and Lib Dems say Labour would benefit from avoiding local polls as Tony Blair prepares to step down and hand power to Gordon Brown.

( snip )

BBC News 24's chief political correspondent, James Landale, said officials from the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister (ODPM) discussed the possibility of cancelling the May 2007 elections in meetings with council chiefs in the last few weeks.

In the minutes of one meeting, seen by BBC News, ODPM officials said it was "highly unlikely" the elections would go ahead, not least because "it would not be very efficient to hold elections for a one-year term".

( Today's relevant BBC report can be read right here. )

06 February 2006

What's Worse -- A Crazy Cartoon, Another Mid-East War, Another Impeachment, Or Permanent Same Old, Same Old ?

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Because, believe This Old Brit ....


02 February 2006

Should Iran Beware The Ides Of March ?

Top flight foreign correspondent and acclaimed defence analyist, Eric Margolis is a master of his art.

He writes well, he knows his specialist subjects backwards and he's rarely wrong in his readings of and reporting on, international affairs.

So when Margolis makes a particular point of flagging certain signals, we would all do well to sit up straight and listen to what he's saying.

To something like the following for example.

NEW YORK - According to US and European intelligence sources, the US and Israel are getting ready to attack Iran if the current round of diplomacy designed to stop Iran from advancing its nuclear program fails.
He sounds somewhat sure of a certain scenario, wouldn't you say ?

And how about this?

President George Bush, with his usual bombastic exaggeration, claims Iran's limited but growing nuclear program poses `a grave threat to the security of the world'.

What he really means is that Iran could one day challenge Israel's Mideast nuclear monopoly and pose a threat to the Jewish state.

These are the same kind of falsehoods we heard before the US invasion of Iraq - another nation that posed no threat to anyone save its own wretched people. Like Iraq, Iran has almost no ability to project military power beyond its borders.

It certainly has no means of threatening the US.

Equaly certainly, we'd say that sounds just about right. As does what follows.

Today, Iran's handful of inaccurate, 1,200km range Shahab-3 missiles can barely reach Israel, and have only non-nuclear conventional warheads. To say Iran somehow threatens the world is a gross lie.

Even if Iran did have nuclear warheads, it has no means of delivering them. Nuclear weapons without delivery systems are useless.

Many of Israel's estimated 200 nuclear warheads are targeted on Iran, including Jericho II missiles and new, nuclear armed US-supplied Tomahawk land-attack missiles on its Dolphin-class submarines in the Indian Ocean off Iran.
(and snip again)

No one should be surprised that Iran seeks nuclear weapons. It is surrounded by states armed with nuclear weapons: Israel, Pakistan, India, Russia and, most lately, US forces based in the Mideast and Central Asia.

US and British special forces, and US drones, have been probing Iran's defenses for a year, and setting up ground beacons to vector air attacks on Iranian nuclear sites.
Oh, really ? Well surprise, suprise -- and we don't think.

But we do believe this. Every worrying word of it.

The US and Israel would likely use air and missile strikes to destroy Iran's nuclear industry and cripple its military. The US has supplied Israel with 2,500-km ranged F-16C/Ds and F-15Is, and 500 GBU-28 deep penetrating bombs. These new bombs may contain depleted uranium. Much of Iran's critical nuclear facilities are far underground or dug into hillsides.
As we also acknowledge absolutely, all of the following.

Israel's hawkish defense minister, Shaul Mofaz, while calling for diplomacy, warned last weekend his nation `would not tolerate' a nuclear-armed Iran. Israel's Mossad has been claiming this March is the absolute deadline to stop Iran's nuclear program.

On cue, Israel's many supporters in the US Congress are loudly calling for war against Iran.

German intelligence leaks claim last December CIA chief Porter Goss briefed Turkey, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, and Jordan about US plans to attack Iraq.

Israeli warplanes would overfly Jordan and Iraq to strike central and southern Iran. US air and missile strikes could come from Diego Garcia, Qatar, Oman, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Central Asia, and from carriers, surface warships and subs in the Indian Ocean. B-2 Stealth bombers and F-117s would lead the attack.

And just in case anyone anywhere wasn't aware -- or was 'slow' enough not to even surmise. ( As if, eh? )

Iran is the world's fourth largest oil exporter;

Starting to sound familar? Remember a rather recent, similar scenario ?

The beleaguered Bush administration may try to escapes mounting woes by launching an air campaign against Iran to whip up war fever among Americans before mid-term elections, thus boosting Republican fortunes.
Hmmm. This Old Brit and Richard would rather not comment -- well, not right now

They'd like to leave that, along with the very last word[s] to Mr Margolis. After all, he is a master in these matters.

But this is a dangerous business because, like the supposed jolly little colonial adventure in Iraq, a war with Iran could be dangerously unpredictable and go terribly wrong.

* Read the full fact packed piece, right here.