One door closes another opens. Having failed abysmally to achieve their objectives in Iraq, the British government is preparing to move on to Iran. British troops may be preparing to leave Iraq – although not for some time – but they will stay in the Middle East. The reason is not hard to fathom. Preparations for an American-led attack on Iran are well advanced, according to those who should know. And the New Labour government is right behind the United States – as it was in the illegal invasion and occupation of Iraq in 2003.
The Bush administration is desperate to get a Republican into the White House in a year’s time and calculates that an air assault on Iran will go down well with American voters. According to The Sunday Telegraph, Brown has been informed of US plans to launch limited air and special forces raids against Revolutionary Guard bases. After talks with Bush during his visit in July, Brown indicated that Britain was "on board" for a military response. The proviso was that Iran had to be shown to be behind a big militant attack or another stunt similar to the kidnapping of British sailors in March. That shouldn’t be too difficult to concoct. America, after all, once invented an entire attack on their forces as a pretext for launching a bombing campaign against North Vietnam.
The report says that the US wants Britain's Special Air Service Regiment to take part in raids inside Iran and had requested help from the Royal Navy to combat Iranian retaliation in the Gulf. "The British understand there's a possible need to strike - not strategic bombing of nuclear sites but facilities in Iran in support of Iraqi elements. This understanding was reached shortly after Brown took office," said Vincent Cannistraro, a former White House intelligence chief in close contact with senior Pentagon officials. "The British have to be a major auxiliary to this plan," Cannistraro continued. "It's not just for political reasons: the US doesn't have a lot of mine clearing capability in the Gulf. The Dutch and the British do."
While the Americans talk of “surgical” strikes, the Iranians will clearly not sit back and do nothing. So the scene is set for a major war, with some US officials even talking about the use of nuclear weapons. These are desperate plans drawn up by a demented regime and will reinforce the position of the reactionary Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Yesterday, he was denounced by Teheran students when he visited their university. To chants of "death to the dictator", hundreds of Iranian students mounted a vociferous protest against his presence. Some students compared Ahmadinejad to the Chilean dictator Pinochet. Iran suffers high unemployment and rising inflation, which many blame on Ahmadinejad's economic policies. Hundreds of thousands of Iranian students graduate every year and many are left jobless. Last December, some students burned the president’s portrait in front of him. On that occasion, Ahmadinejad defended their right to demonstrate, saying that it proved Iran's devotion to freedom. But many of the students were arrested later. Some are still believed to be in detention.
AWTW communications editor