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Laying the Groundwork

The Guardian today helps lay the groundwork for who is truly to blame for all of the trouble in Iraq: Iran.
Iran is secretly forging ties with al-Qaida elements and Sunni Arab militias in Iraq in preparation for a summer showdown with coalition forces intended to tip a wavering US Congress into voting for full military withdrawal, US officials say...

The official said US commanders were bracing for a nationwide, Iranian-orchestrated summer offensive, linking al-Qaida and Sunni insurgents to Tehran's Shia militia allies, that Iran hoped would trigger a political mutiny in Washington and a US retreat. "We expect that al-Qaida and Iran will both attempt to increase the propaganda and increase the violence prior to Petraeus's report in September [when the US commander General David Petraeus will report to Congress on President George Bush's controversial, six-month security "surge" of 30,000 troop reinforcements]," the official said.

"Certainly it [the violence] is going to pick up from their side. There is significant latent capability in Iraq, especially Iranian-sponsored capability. They can turn it up whenever they want. You can see that from the pre-positioning that's been going on and the huge stockpiles of Iranian weapons that we've turned up in the last couple of months. The relationships between Iran and groups like al-Qaida are very fluid," the official said.

All that's missing are claims that Iran is supplying Iraqi insurgents with weapons of mass destruction (we don't really know where those chlorine bombs are coming from and the righties hoot and holler "WMD's in Iraq!" every time one goes off). But I mean, come on, how much more blatant does it have to be before people will realize this is just a rehash of the same BS peddled to us in the run up to the Iraq war. Now I'll admit that there is a remote possibility that some of what is written here may be true but it would require a leap of faith that many are just not willing to take given this administration's history.

For what seems like the millionth time, we must remind everyone that Iran is predominantly Shiite. Are we really to believe that they would ally themselves with their sworn enemies, the Sunnis, to foment violence in Iraq to such a degree that the US has no choice but to leave? Wouldn't it actually result in the opposite? An increase in violence only makes it more likely the US will stay longer to help quell it.

And there's the rub that makes this reek of propaganda. Having a reason to stay the course is exactly what the Bushies want. This piece yet another trial balloon. Hell, it wouldn't surprise me to learn that this anonymous "senior official" was Petraeus himself. Gotta find someone to blame for why the surge isn't working. And it has the added incentive of being more fodder for the warmongers who are jonesing to get shock and awe, this time in Tehran.

More skepticism at Meme.

Update: Steven D. reminds us of redirected misdirections.

(Filed at State of the Day)

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