Gareth Porter, author of “Manufactured Crisis: The Untold History of the Iranian Nuclear Scare”, is a renowned investigative journalist and historian on U.S. national security policy. Porter was the 2012 winner of the Gellhorn Prize for journalism awarded by the Gellhorn Trust in the U.K. His previous book was Perils of Dominance: Imbalance of Power and the Road to War in Vietnam published by University of California Press in 2005. He has taught international studies at the City College of New York and American University, where he was the first Academic Director for Peace and Conflict Resolution in the Washington Semester program. Dr. Porter sat down with Reza Akhlaghi of the Foreign Policy Association to discuss his newly released book.
The FP interview was published under the title "A Candid Discussion with Gareth Porter" on March 4, 2014. Reza Akhlaghi thoroughly discussed the Israel-MKO collusion with Dr. Porter who has documented the MKO-Israel misleading role in manufacturing the Iranian nuclear crisis. The following was extracted from the full interview:
–Iran’s “possible military dimensions” as one of the sticking issues in the current nuclear negotiations must be resolved—according to the White House—to the satisfaction of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). In your conversations with the former German Foreign Office coordinator of North American-German relations, Karsten Voigt, the documents at the hands of the IAEA that point to the presence of such covert military program come from the Iranian dissident group, Mojahedin-E-Khalq (MEK) organization. Tell us about your conversations with Mr. Voigt, how credible these documents are, and if they will be used in the current negotiations?
-Karsten Voigt provided the most crucial revelation in my book – that the documents that had been described in the news media as having come from the purloined computer of a scientist participating on a covert Iranian nuclear weapons research program, were in fact given to the BND, the German intelligence agency, by the MEK, and that the BND had concluded that the MEK source was “doubtful”. Voigt, who is now retired from the German Foreign Office, told me in an interview last year that senior officials of the BND informed him of that fact in November 2004 after Secretary of State Colin Powell had spoken publicly about Iranian efforts to combine their ballistic missile, the Shahab-3, with a “weapon” – meaning a nuclear weapon. They knew that Powell was referring indirectly to information in those papers and they were alarmed, because it appeared that history was about to repeat itself: Powell had cited information from another MEK source two years earlier as the centerpiece of his rationale for war in Iraq. That source was the now infamous “Curveball”. The BND had tried in vain to warn the CIA not to rely on that information, and Voigt believed they now wanted him to do something to warn the United States not to use the information in the “laptop documents” either. Voigt did, in fact, try to do so. But in the event, the Bush administration pushed those documents on the IAEA and they became the basis for that Agency’s indictment of Iran’s nuclear program from 2008 to 2011.
The complete story of those documents in the book, however, includes the evidence I found in my investigation that they were fabricated by Israel in order to advance a strategy of provoking a military confrontation between the United States and Iran.
Nejat Society reported from Foregin Policy