In late 2009, The Times of London published a now admittedly forged document it asserted revealed "a four-year plan [by Iran] to test a neutron initiator." On the same day, Catherine Phillips, another writer for The Times, quoted Mark Fitzpatrick barefacedly saying, "Is this the smoking gun? That's the question people should be asking. It looks like the smoking gun. This is smoking uranium." To the naïve, this would be a shocking use of the media to garner support for a war that is pre-emptive and unjustified. To everyone else, it's a repeat of 2001 and the pre-Iraq war legacy of the two biggest war criminals of our generation: George Bush and Tony Blair.
Not surprisingly, very few members of the corporate owned media have bothered to ask: does Iran have nuclear weapons? Does Iran even want nuclear weapons? It doesn't matter. When the media is as prostituted as it is now, the sole aim is to convince the masses that Iran threatens our very existence and must be dealt with in a manner that disregards every single international law and charter. The Times of London is part of the seasoned propagandist Rupert Murdoch publishing empire that owns Fox News, the Sunday Times, and the New York Post. As expected, each and every Murdoch-owned media outlet views Iran from a decidedly pro-Israeli lens and disregards the need for evidence in making claims against a country that has fulfilled every clause of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT or NNPT). You know, the same one Israel refuses to sign.
Below are the top myths the media tells us daily about Iran.
Iran Has or Wants Nuclear Weapons
To date, no concrete evidence has been presented about the existence of a nuclear weapons program in Iran. Each and every inspect report by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and the National Intelligence Estimate has confirmed that Iran does not have a nuclear weapons program. Additionally, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Sayyid Ali Khamenei, who has the final word in Iran on such issues, has denounced nuclear weapons as un-Islamic and stated unequivocally that Islam forbids the "production and stock piling of nuclear weapons." The Iranian fatwa against nuclear weapons is a registered document with the United Nations. Iran has been the only country to lobby for a nuclear-free Middle East. In contrast, Israel has yet to agree to a single IAEA inspection, and its nuclear weapons plant in Dimona is an open secret used to intimidate the Palestinians and neighboring countries.
Iran Threatened to Wipe Israel off the Map
The world hears incessantly how Iranian president Ahmedinejad threatened to "wipe Israel off the map." Ironically, not a single translation of this speech has been made to clearly prove he made this statement. In 2005, the newly-elected Ahmedinejad was giving a speech at a conference in Tehran about Zionism. He quoted the founder of the Islamic Revolution, Imam Khomeini, and said, "Imam ghoft een rezhim-e ishghalgar-e qods bayad az safheh-ye ruzgar mahv shavad." A direct translation of this is: "The Imam [Khomeini] said [the] regime occupying Jerusalem must vanish from the page of time." The words "wiped off the map" are not to be found in that sentence, and any amateur translator will tell you nagsheh, the Persian term for map, is not found in that sentence. In the speech, Ahmedinejad further stated that just as the Soviet regime had fallen, the Zionist one would too. He did not say Israel was going to be wiped off any map. Obviously when the Soviet regime collapsed, was Russia wiped off the map? In the same infamous speech, Ahmedinejad called for a Middle East where Muslims, Jews, and Christians would live in a real democracy and in liberty.
For the record, Iran has not launched an attack on any nation in the past 300 years, but it has defended itself against assaults by other countries. Compare this track record to that of the biggest war monger in the Middle East, the same one that uses cluster bombs to take out innocent children.
The Iranians are Eagerly Awaiting the Arrival of "US Democracy"
American-style democracy has taken over the Middle East; just ask the Iraqis and Afghans how happy they are post-American liberation of their countries. Operation Iraqi Freedom has only cost 1.3 million Iraqi lives to date. In the last Iranian elections, an overwhelming 85 percent of voters turned out to pick the next president, and practically every pre-election poll showed President Ahmedinejad with a significant lead over his opponents. However, the West continues to claim Iran is not a democratic country despite it being the only Middle Eastern country with transparent elections and a fully functional parliament. Western hypocrisy of this magnitude must be respected, and the West has yet to call its allies (Egypt, Morocco, Jordan, and Saudi Arabia) for throwing political opponents in jail and never holding elections.
By all instances, Iran is a democratic society, but to the United States and its allies, the very existence of a democracy in Iran is a threat. They removed this threat in 1953 when they overthrew the democratically-elected government and put in the totalitarian Shah. Speaking of democracy and sovereignty, the US would know a thing or two about those terms, considering for the past 30 years we have tried to overthrow the Iranian government and laid siege upon siege on the Iranian people. More recently, Congress voted to allocate 120 million dollars for anti-regime media broadcasts into Iran. It doesn't end there. The US also generously donated 60-75 million dollars to fund and support violent underground extremist groups like Mujahiden-Khalq (MKO), one of the largest terrorist organizations in Iran. Democracy in the Middle East is synonymous with murderous and catastrophic regime change.
Iran Is Five Years Away from a Nuclear Bomb
Every few months, the United States and Britain try to scare us out of sleeping at night by saying Iran is five years away from a nuclear bomb. Here's the problem: Iran has been "five years away from a nuclear bomb" for the past four decades, since the Shah began the peaceful nuclear program with US help. Those Iranians don't seem to be getting any closer to a nuclear weapon, which they don't seem to want by the way, but that won't detract the propagandist and war criminals. When the Qom facility was "exposed" by the United States last year, the neocons were quick to hawk it as proof of Iran's nuclear weapons program. However, they neglected to mention that Iran had openly revealed by it in a voluntary letter to the IAEA days before the US announced it. In addition, the Qom facility is incomplete and non-operational, and if the United States knew about the facility and did not reveal this information, then it too is in direct violation of the NPT. Unless, of course, the facility was not illegal, and thus there was no need to report it.
On April 13, President Obama was asked by a Washington Post reporter if he would "call on Israel to declare its nuclear program and sign the Non-Proliferation Treaty." The usually eloquent Obama stuttered his way through a response once he finally regained his composure and stated, "And, as far as Israel goes, I'm not going to comment on their program."
Maybe he should leave Iran's peaceful program alone and worry about the nuclear warheads Israel and India have.