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  1.    #1  
    Because this development has significant meaning internationally and within domestic politics, and would never see the light of day otherwise, discuss:

    All 16 US Intelligence Agencies Find Iran Halted Its Nuclear Arms Effort in 2003

    WASHINGTON, Dec. 3 — A new assessment by American intelligence agencies released Monday concludes that Iran halted its nuclear weapons program in 2003 and that the program remains frozen, contradicting a judgment two years ago that Tehran was working relentlessly toward building a nuclear bomb.

    The conclusions of the new assessment are likely to reshape the final year of the Bush administration, which has made halting Iran’s nuclear program a cornerstone of its foreign policy.

    The assessment, a National Intelligence Estimate that represents the consensus view of all 16 American spy agencies, states that Tehran is likely to keep its options open with respect to building a weapon, but that intelligence agencies “do not know whether it currently intends to develop nuclear weapons.”

    Iran is continuing to produce enriched uranium, a program that the Tehran government has said is intended for civilian purposes. The new estimate says that the enrichment program could still provide Iran with enough raw material to produce a nuclear weapon sometime by the middle of next decade, a timetable essentially unchanged from previous estimates.

    But the new report essentially disavows a judgment that the intelligence agencies issued in 2005, which concluded that Iran had an active secret arms program intended to transform the raw material into a nuclear weapon. The new estimate declares instead with “high confidence” that the military-run program was shut in 2003, and it concludes with “moderate confidence” that the program remains frozen. The report judges that the halt was imposed by Iran “primarily in response to increasing international scrutiny and pressure.”

    It was not clear what prompted the reversal. Administration officials said the new estimate reflected conclusions that the intelligence agencies had agreed on only in the past several weeks. The report’s agnosticism about Iran’s nuclear intentions represents a very different tone than had been struck by President Bush, and by Vice President **** Cheney, who warned in a speech in October that if Iran “stays on its present course, the international community is prepared to impose serious consequences.”
    Should US foreign policy regarding Iran continue to state that "all military options are on the table" in light of this development? If so, upon what grounds?

    If the Bush administration continues its line of sabre-rattling toward Iran, how much further will the Republican presidential candidates distance themselves from current GOP leadership and policy?
  2. #2  
    I think that the genie is out of the bottle (thanks to AQ Khan, the Pakistani proliferator, and the Pakistani military and govt).
    --
    Aloke
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  3.    #3  
    You don't genuinely believe the genie escaped the bottle that recently, do you? Besides, what you appear to be alluding to is not government-related (at least not as it relates to this thread subject), but the risk of independent groups' acquisition or creation of relatively low-end nuclear weapons.
  4.    #4  


    A Vast Leftwing Conspiracy??

    U.S. Intel Report On Iran Was Political: Bolton

    BERLIN (Reuters) - U.S. intelligence services were seeking to influence political policy-making with their assessment Iran had halted its nuclear arms program in 2003, former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations John Bolton said.

    Deer Spiegel magazine quoted Bolton on Saturday as saying the aim of the U.S. National Intelligence Estimate (NIE), contradicting his and President George W. Bush's own oft-stated position, was not to provide the latest intelligence on Iran.

    "This is politics disguised as intelligence," Bolton was quoted as saying in an article appearing in next week's edition.

    Bolton described the NIE, released on Monday, as a "quasi-putsch" by the agencies, Deer Spiegel said.

    The NIE said Iran had stopped its nuclear weapons program four years ago but was continuing to develop the technical means that could be applied to producing weapons. This contradicted the oft-stated position of President Bush that Iran is actively trying to develop an atomic weapon.

    The hawkish Bolton has long criticized Mohamed ElBaradei, head of the Vienna-based U.N. International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), for refusing to declare that there was hard evidence Tehran was trying to develop nuclear weapons.

    ElBaradei said the new NIE "somewhat vindicated" Iran, which has always denied allegations it was secretly trying to build atom bombs.

    Earlier this year Bolton said: "Regime change or the use of force are the only available options to prevent Iran from getting a nuclear weapons capability, if they want it."
  5. #5  
    Bush screwed this up- but not in terms of policy. Proper action would have been to attack this NIE report and call it what it is. Instead he backed off and allowed himself to get cooked.

    This is really bad news- as it is clear that Iran has nuclear ambitions and will continue to mask their progress as research on power generation.

    What this really means is a pre-emptive attack from Israel sooner rather than later. They sure as hell are not going to let a country become a nuclear power that has publicly stated on many occassions that they want to obliterate them off of the map.

    If you think that Iran has truly stopped seeking nuclear capabilities than I have a Treo 1000 for sale. PM me an offer.

    -Rob
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  6.    #6  
    Quote Originally Posted by robber View Post
    What this really means is a pre-emptive attack from Israel sooner rather than later. They sure as hell are not going to let a country become a nuclear power that has publicly stated on many occassions that they want to obliterate them off of the map.
    So if, in 2001 and 2002, the 16 US Intelligence agencies had the consensus that Iraq had destroyed its NBC WMD capabilities and stockpiles no later than 1993, as was the known minority IC opinion 2001/02 and and has since proven to have been factually correct, the US should've authorized Israel to invade Iraq on our behalf?
  7. #7  
    Quote Originally Posted by lifes2short View Post
    So if, in 2001 and 2002, the 16 US Intelligence agencies had the consensus that Iraq had destroyed its NBC WMD capabilities and stockpiles no later than 1993, as was the known minority IC opinion 2001/02 and and has since proven to have been factually correct, the US should've authorized Israel to invade Iraq on our behalf?

    What else would the minority opinion have been? Your statement is pure spin.

    The issue in regards to Israel is that this is going to escalate to the point were they are going to pre-eptively attack with or without our permission. Can you blame them?
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  8.    #8  
    Quote Originally Posted by robber View Post
    What else would the minority opinion have been?
    That oblique, willfully or not, are you? Or, are you only capable of avoidance maneuvers?

    The issue in regards to Israel is that this is going to escalate to the point were they are going to pre-eptively attack with or without our permission. Can you blame them?
    Pre-emptively attack due to what? Hardline sabre-rattling? If you believe that Israel takes military action of this magnitude without the US greenlighting it, your Treo 1000 is worth every penny.
  9. #9  
    Quote Originally Posted by lifes2short View Post
    That oblique, willfully or not, are you? Or, are you only capable of avoidance maneuvers?


    Pre-emptively attack due to what? Hardline sabre-rattling? If you believe that Israel takes military action of this magnitude without the US greenlighting it, your Treo 1000 is worth every penny.
    And we have come full circle. You either believe Iran has nuclear ambitions or you dont. I do- you apparently dont.
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  10.    #10  
    Quote Originally Posted by robber View Post
    And we have come full circle. You either believe Iran has nuclear ambitions or you dont. I do- you apparently dont.
    You clearly believe that Ambition is the threat which Young Republicans should be suiting up for. I do not. Neither does the NIE, which among its 16 agencies, knows a thing-or-2 more on this than you or I.
  11. #11  
    Quote Originally Posted by lifes2short View Post
    You clearly believe that Ambition is the threat which Young Republicans should be suiting up for. I do not. Neither does the NIE, which among its 16 agencies, knows a thing-or-2 more on this than you or I.
    We have not attacked Iran- so no one has "suited up" for this. This was about an international coalition applying diploamatic pressure to a country that many feel should not have access to a nuclear arsenal. That coalition is now toast. If anything war is more immineant than before- Israel is not going to take a chance that Iran is going to arm itself.

    But that is not how you see it. You see this as a big win. Bush looks bad- you can demand policy to change. You want egg on the face of the administration. Concern on how this might impact the region negatively is a distant second for you. Bush just needs to lose. A win for Iran is a win for you.

    What a Patriot you are.
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  12. #12  
    Quote Originally Posted by robber View Post
    ...You see this as a big win. Bush looks bad- you can demand policy to change. You want egg on the face of the administration....What a Patriot you are.

    we'll come to a conclusion first -- then we'll invent "some facts" to justify it.

    Its worked great so far in Iraq -- let's go do it in Iran.

    I LOVE this !!

    The ENTIRE intelligence community -- all 16 branches of it without dissent -- insisted that junior acknowledge their report, knowing that otherwise junior would again lie the nation into a war.

    Maybe they would have done as they did in 2002, as they normally do, which is to keep quiet. But after junior's speech about nuclear Iran and WWIII, their consciences could not allow it.

    junior was clearly intending to go again to war irrespective of what he'd been told.

    That junior is caught telling lies, is just a redundant bonus.

    But to see the neo-con fleas jumping around attacking intelligence agencies they used to manipulate and intimidate toward their own ends, because those agencies found some integrity and spine ?? -- that's a true Xmas gift from Santa himself.
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    #13  
    As opposed to the Shortie's of the world criticizing intel in 2003, but now somehow asserting - almost magically - that *THIS* intelligence is beyond reproach?

    Interesting how that goes....

    I think this is a good time to gently remind BARYE and his minions that the report, had they actually bothered to read it, vindicates Bolton's (who at the time was Undersecretary of State for Arms Control) position that Iran was up to no good.

    I can understand the Democrats ongoing discomfort with the positive effects of the surge in Iraq. This would explain the zeal of the resident forum circle-jerk to pounce on the NIE morsel that, somehow, "discredits" the administration - but largely ignore the worrisome fact that Iran is still enriching Uranium.

    We - at least we know where your priorities are.
  14.    #14  
    Quote Originally Posted by robber View Post
    We have not attacked Iran- so no one has "suited up" for this. This was about an international coalition applying diploamatic pressure to a country that many feel should not have access to a nuclear arsenal. That coalition is now toast.
    All because of this grand Leftwing Conspiracy within the US's IC?

    If anything war is more immineant than before- Israel is not going to take a chance that Iran is going to arm itself.
    As long as the US grants permission to Israel.

    Just as I take Bush's words of 3/17/03 very seriously, "Today, no nation can possibly claim that Iraq has disarmed. And it will not disarm so long as Saddam Hussein holds power," Bush, and only Bush can accept responsibility for his words and subsequent actions. I'm not to blame for them, nor are you. Only the architects of this disaster share their disastrous fate.

    But that is not how you see it. You see this as a big win. Bush looks bad- you can demand policy to change. You want egg on the face of the administration. Concern on how this might impact the region negatively is a distant second for you. Bush just needs to lose. A win for Iran is a win for you.

    What a Patriot you are.
    Lacking any reasonable explanation which justifies your position of invading another sovereign nation who has the audacity to have the 'Ambition', your first inclination is to make it personal? Your assumption is that every person who opposes invading another sovereign nation which is not an imminent threat or has not attacked another is less than patriotic. World and US History is a glaring example of just how wrong your mindmap is. It's not about politics. It's about demanding the absolute, uncompromised best from ourselves and getting it right. Just imagine how Bush would've handled the Cuban Missile Crisis. The IC gets it.
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    #15  
    Silence is golden, huh Shortie?
  16. gojeda's Avatar
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    #16  
    Quote Originally Posted by robber View Post
    But that is not how you see it. You see this as a big win. Bush looks bad- you can demand policy to change. You want egg on the face of the administration. Concern on how this might impact the region negatively is a distant second for you. Bush just needs to lose. A win for Iran is a win for you.

    What a Patriot you are.
    Hammer....meet nail.

    Couple this with the fact that good news in Iraq is bad news for the Democrats, and you have a bit of a mine field to navigate before the 2008 elections.
  17. #17  
    Quote Originally Posted by lifes2short View Post
    Lacking any reasonable explanation which justifies your position of invading another sovereign nation who has the audacity to have the 'Ambition', your first inclination is to make it personal? Your assumption is that every person who opposes invading another sovereign nation which is not an imminent threat or has not attacked another is less than patriotic. World and US History is a glaring example of just how wrong your mindmap is. It's not about politics. It's about demanding the absolute, uncompromised best from ourselves and getting it right. Just imagine how Bush would've handled the Cuban Missile Crisis. The IC gets it.

    We have not invaded Iran- nor was an invasion immineant. This is the second time that you have falsely stated that. If you want to debate facts great- if you are going to resort to inventing your own history and context than I am out.
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  18.    #18  
    Quote Originally Posted by robber View Post
    We have not invaded Iran- nor was an invasion immineant. This is the second time that you have falsely stated that. If you want to debate facts great- if you are going to resort to inventing your own history and context than I am out.
    Apparently, you're already out. Unless you re-read the thread enough times so it sinks in.
  19.    #19  
    To use Iraq and Success in the same sentence is only possible as a Bushism in BushWorld. What an oxymoron.

    On a completely unrelated note ... Where's bin Laden?



    Quote Originally Posted by gojeda View Post
    Hammer....meet nail.

    Couple this with the fact that good news in Iraq is bad news for the Democrats, and you have a bit of a mine field to navigate before the 2008 elections.
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    #20  
    Quote Originally Posted by lifes2short View Post
    To use Iraq and Success in the same sentence is only possible as a Bushism in BushWorld. What an oxymoron.
    Thank you for making my point crystal clear. Good news in Iraq is bad news for Democrats.

    On a completely unrelated note ... Where's bin Laden?

    On the run, hiding in a cave somewhere, and still laughing at the Americans for not taking him when the Sudanese offered him on a silver platter in the mid-1990s.
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