US Intelligence Has ‘Muffed’ Proof on Iran’s Alleged WMD Programs for Decades
Gareth Porter ; the American historian, investigative journalist, author and policy analyst specializing in U.S. national security policy who was active as a Vietnam specialist and anti-war activist during the Vietnam War whose analysis and reporting including on Mujahedin-e Khalq issue has appeared in academic journals, news publications
told Radio Sputnik’s Loud & Clear that the US’ claim that Iran had a nuclear weapons program is based on false ideas bolstered by the US intelligence community and that China is unlikely to succumb to the US’ anti-Iran campaign.
“The problem in part is that the US intelligence community completely muffed it – they blew this even more thoroughly than they blew the questions of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq,” Porter told host John Kiriakou on Wednesday.
“It was based on a series of false ideas that the intelligence communities began with and some maneuvering by high-ranking CIA officials … who interfered with the process of the assessment of Iran’s nuclear program within the CIA,” Porter explained. “It culminated in the approval of this set of documents that came from the Mujahedin-e-Khalq [MEK] that was aligned with and did work with the Israelis” to allegedly prove that Iran had an active nuclear weapons program.
“They were fakes, they were fabricated documents,” Porter said,
referring to a laptop the MEK allegedly supplied Israeli intelligence with in 2005, claiming it belonged to an Iranian nuclear scientist. “And the Israelis were behind it. They were the ones who had the capability and the motivation to produce such fabrication and the CIA did not do their job appropriately and they gave it the go ahead. The reality is that those documents were the central evidence that was offered to the world and accepted by the International Atomic Energy Agency as sufficient evidence to put Iran in the dock.”
“So ever since 2005, the US and its allies have been getting the rest of the world to get along with the idea that Iran was trying to get nuclear weapons,” Porter explained.
“During the Iran-Iraq War, when Iran was subjected to eight years of chemical weapons attack by the Iraqi government which killed upwards of 100,000 Iranians, the Iranians had the capability to produce chemical weapons.
Porter noted that during the 1980-88 Iran-Iraq War, over 100,000 Iranians died – many of them at the hands of Iraqi poison gas attacks – and Tehran had the capability at that time to produce chemical weapons.
“They never did it. They never used a single chemical weapon during the war. Ayatollah Khomeini forbade that … the reason was it was illegal, illcit under Shia Islam,” Porter said about the Iranian revolutionary leader, also adding that there has never been “hard evidence” that Iran has produced nuclear weapons.
“I think that people need to understand that the truth is fundamentally different than the narrative that has been accepted by virtually everybody, by this political system, and in Europe as well,” Porter said.
Tehran is partially discontinuing its commitments under the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) agreement in a bid to salvage the multilateral nuclear deal, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said on Wednesday, Sputnik reported. The president warned that beginning July 7, Iran’s uranium enrichment would exceed 3.67% purity, and earlier this week, it exceeded the 300 kg maximum allowable mass of enriched uranium stockpiles.
Despite the US’ “maximum pressure” campaign against Iran, “the fundamental reality” is that Trump doesn’t want a war with the Middle Eastern country, Porter told Sputnik.
“It is clear he had made a decision. I don’t think he was ever ready to really go to war with Iran. I think he had made up his mind that unless Americans were attacked by Iran directly, he was not going to war with them,” Porter said, noting “the Iranians clearly don’t want to have a war with the US.”
In addition, according to ship-tracking data obtained by Paris-based energy researcher Kpler SAS, at least five supertankers headed to China were loaded with Iranian liquified petroleum gas, suggesting that China isn’t going to abide by the US’ maximum pressure campaign. In recent days, the Chinese-owned ship “Sino Energy 1” was seen approaching Iranian waters before dropping off radar. It then reappeared days later, apparently full and leaving Iranian waters, the New York Times reported.
“I think it’s pretty clear that what this signals is that China is not going to go along with the maximum pressure campaign in any way such as the Trump administration is demanding … I think the bigger question at the moment is whether the Europeans are capable of playing any independent role in regards to this issue. They are poised in this moment to move in the direction of the US despite the fact that they know it’s wrong and the risks are very high. My guess is that they are not ready to openly defy the US on this issue because of the power that the US financial system continues to wield in the world economy,” Porter explained.
According to Porter, there are two likely possibilities regarding the Iran-US situation.
“The most likely two possiblies are that, a) the same cast of characters remains in place over the next few months and the Iranians inevitably take actions take actions that cause [US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and National Security Adviser John Bolton] people to insist we [the US] have to take more decisive action militarily … and we have the beginning of an actual war; or b) Bolton is replaced as national security adviser by someone who is prepared to actually do something diplomatically to end this crisis,” Porter explained.
BEHROUZ MEHRI, sputniknews.com