“MIKE POMPEO: But in terms of how you think about problem sets, I – when I was a cadet, what’s the first – what’s the cadet motto at West Point? You will not lie, cheat, or steal, or tolerate those who do. I was the CIA director. We lied, we cheated, we stole. (Laughter.) It’s – it was like – we had entire training courses. (Applause.)”
Transcript of the video below.
1) PATRICK CLAWSON ON “CRISIS INITIATION”
CLAWSON: I frankly think that crisis initiation is really tough and it’s very hard for me to see how the United States president can get us to war with Iran. Which leads me to conclude that if in fact compromise is not coming, that the traditional way of America gets to war is what would be best for US interests.
Some people might think that Mr. Roosevelt wanted to get us into World War II. As David mentioned, you may recall we had to wait for Pearl Harbor. Some people might think Mr. Wilson wanted to get us into World War I. You may recall he had to wait for the Lusitania episode. Some people might think that Mr. Johnson wanted to send troops to Vietnam. You may recall they had to wait for the Gulf of Tonkin episode. We didn’t go to war with Spain until the USS Maine exploded. And may I point out that Mr. Lincoln did not feel he could call out the federal army until Fort Sumter was attacked, which is why he ordered the commander at Fort Sumter to do exactly that thing would the South Carolinians had said would cause an attack.
So if in fact the Iranians aren’t going to compromise, it would be best if somebody else started the war.
I would just like to suggest that one can combine other means of pressure with sanctions. I mentioned that explosion on August 17th. We could step up the pressure. I mean, look people, Iranian submarines periodically go down. Someday one of them might not come up. Who would know why? We can do a variety of things if we wish to increase the pressure. I’m not advocating that, but I’m just suggesting that this is not an either-or proposition of, you know, it’s just sanctions has to succeed or other things. We are in the game of using covert means against the Iranians. We could get nastier at that.
2) ZBIGNIEW BRZEZINSKI WARNS OF “A TERRORIST ACT BLAMED ON IRAN”
BRZEZINSKI: A plausible scenario for a military collision with Iran involves Iraqi failure to meet the benchmarks followed by accusations of the Iranian responsibility for the failure, then by some provocation in Iraq or a terrorist act in the United States blamed on Iran culminating in a “defensive” US military action against Iran that plunges a lonely America into a spreading and deepening quagmire eventually ranging across Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan and Pakistan.
3) GARY HART WARNS IRAN ABOUT “ANOTHER GULF OF TONKIN”
WE ARE CHANGE: Yes, you recently wrote a letter to the President of Iran in which you urge them to study the gulf of Tonkin incident which we now know is a staged event used to justify the war in Vietnam and you also raise the question “Does America provoke provocations?” Sir, was this not an . . I have the letter right here sir if you want to read it I have it on me right here Oh sir I mean that’s mainstream media has been published in many publications do you deny writing that letter sir you say I can read it to you right now okay you said on presuming that you are not actually ignorant enough to desire war with the United States you might you might be well advised to read the history of the sinking of the USS Maine in Havana Harbor in 1998 and the history of the Gulf of Tonkin
HART: I’m sorry that was a blog or nothing to most I did not literally write a letter it was a mock letter read failed in doublespeak that the United States could stage an event to go to war with Iran no no then well what I was come in cheek saying was that we have an administration in Washington that is dying for a reason to bomb Iran and so in a mock blog letter to the Iranian government not the president of the Iranian government I just simply said if unless you people want to be bombed you better be careful about cross border incursions and I think I explicitly said keep the Republican Guard and revolutionary whatever it’s called away from the Iraqi border I was trying to communicate to the American people what our own government was trying to plan and that was to find a reason for bombing Iran and I was simply saying in effect to the American people through this mock letter be very careful about this administration creating a USS Maine incident or a Gulf of Tonkin incident that would justify popping around that’s all
SOURCE: Gary Hart WARNING – WeAreChange
4) SEYMOUR HERSH: CHENEY’S PLAN TO STAGE AN INCIDENT
FAIZ SHAKIR: There’s a bit at the end of this latest article that you wrote that I found actually most interesting. And the article hasn’t got that much attention but I want to get your take on this. And this relates to a stray or an incident that happened a couple months ago. Many of you remember. It was in the Strait of Hormuz. There was an incident where an American carrier almost blew a couple of Iranian speedboats out of the water and perhaps would have started the next war against Iran or potentially a World War III. And it was averted, thankfully, at the last second. We later learned that there was really nothing to be terribly concerned about—the incident was overblown—and that there was a vice admiral in charge of the fleet in the Strait of Hormuz who said basically there was no concern there. That it was overblown.
HERSH: But yeah, the second part basically. He was concerned but they were never a threat.
SHAKIR: They were never a threat. And you talked about—this his name is Kevin Cosgrove and in an article you write:
Nonetheless, Cosgriff’s demeanor angered Cheney, according to the former senior intelligence official. But a lesson was learned in the incident: The public had supported the idea of retaliation, and was even asking why the US didn’t do more. The former official said that, a few weeks later, a meeting took place in the Vice-President’s office. “The subject was how to create a casus belli between Tehran and Washington,” he said.
What you’re writing there is that Cheney—there was a meeting in the White House where Cheney presided overlooking to cook up the next war. A false war based on false intelligence.
HERSH: My oldest son is a lawyer and when I sent him this story before it was published—basically in a final form, just a day—and he wrote back and he said “You really buried the lead in this one,” about casus belli. Um, how many press are here?
Anyway, there was a meeting. Among the items considered and rejected—which is why The New Yorker did not publish it, on grounds that it wasn’t accepted—one of the items was why not . . . There were a dozen ideas proffered about how to trigger war. The one that interested me the most was: Why don’t we build in our shipyard—build four or five boats that look like Iranian PT boats, put navy seals on them with a lot of arms and the next time what about those goes through the Straits of Hormuz start a shoot up. Might cost some lives. And it was rejected because you can’t have Americans killing Americans. But that’s the kind of that’s the level of stuff we were talking about: provocation.
But that was rejected so I could understand the argument of not writing something that was rejected. Maybe. I, basically—my attitude always towards editors is they’re mice training to be rats. But the point is jejune if you know what that means. Silly, maybe, but potentially very lethal. Because one of the things they learned in the incident was the American public—if you get the right incident, the American public will support, you know, bang bang kiss kiss. You know, we’re into it.
MIKE POMPEO: But in terms of how you think about problem sets, I – when I was a cadet, what’s the first – what’s the cadet motto at West Point? You will not lie, cheat, or steal, or tolerate those who do. I was the CIA director. We lied, we cheated, we stole. (Laughter.) It’s – it was like – we had entire training courses. (Applause.)
POMPEO: Good afternoon. It is the assessment of the United States Government that the Islamic Republic of Iran is responsible for the attacks that occurred in the Gulf of Oman today. This assessment is based on intelligence, the weapons used, the level of expertise needed to execute the operation, recent similar Iranian attacks on shipping, and the fact that no proxy group operating in the area has the resources and proficiency to act with such a high degree of sophistication.
Featured image is from Jared Rodriguez/Truthout