As our Nobel laureate President ascended to the podium on September 25 at the United Nations for his last international speech before the election, we again were the recipients of fine oratory and rhetorical flourish about America’s problems in the world. Focusing on the Middle East, Central Asia, and North Africa—what’s often misleadingly termed, “the Muslim world”—Obama singled out Iran’s treaty-entitled uranium enrichment activities, saying “make no mistake: a nuclear-armed Iran is not a challenge that can be contained.”
Obama’s remarks were dutifully transcribed by our stenographer class, as can be expected, despite intelligence-community conclusions to the contrary and the historical precedent of containment as Cold War policy. This follows the latest media scare concerning Iran’s nuclear capabilities, and the recent tiff between the U.S. and Israel over it. Like Obama’s speech (and because of similarly unchallenged statements by politicians), many media reports are awash in misleading narratives, incomplete histories, and outright fiction about Iran and its nuclear program.
Given how easily the American public and media were manipulated into believing that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction, this moment should give us some pause. The disastrous effects of that $3 Trillion Dollar War are still being felt across the world. For those not interested in seeing a much-bloodier, costlier sequel, I offer this introductory course in intellectual self-defense. The only way to rebuff and dismantle propaganda is to be aware of the truth on which it claims to comment.
Lesson #1: Iran is not building nuclear weapons
Lesson #2: Iran is not a threat to the US
Lesson #3: Iran is not an existential threat to Israel
Lesson #4: Iran’s leadership is not fanatical or suicidal
Lesson #5: Politicians and media stenographers have been claiming Iran is on the verge of developing nuclear weapons since the mid-1980’s
Lesson #6: The American and Israeli security establishments are against it
Lesson #7: The American and Israeli people are against it
Lesson #8: An Iranian nuclear weapon will be all-but-assured if the U.S. or Israel attack