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Thursday, July 15, 2010


Today's possible black op against Iran

Iranian nuclear scientist Shahram Amiri has now returned to Iran, claiming that he had been abducted and held captive by the U.S. The U.S. says he was a voluntary defector who came to the U.S., spilled the beans (some beans, anyway) on Iran's nuclear program (though exactly what beans he spilled of course they're not saying), became disenchanted, and decided to return to Iran.

Now of course I don't know the truth here. It does seem highly unlikely that someone who had actually voluntarily disclosed classified information about Iran's nuclear program to a country dedicated to bringing about "regime change" in Iran would then voluntarily return to Iran, whatever the alleged threats to his family might have been. Even less likely that he would be given a hero's welcome on returning to Iran. So, to put it simply, I'll take his word over Hillary Clinton's anytime, until given substantial actual proof to the contrary.

But what actually prompts me to write is today's Washington Post article claiming that Amiri was paid $5 million for his alleged cooperation, an article which strikes me as nothing less than a black op, a large "FU" to Amiri, designed to get him into maximum trouble on his return to Iran. First of all, we're told "the payments reflected the value of the information gleaned." Really? If the U.S. had really gleaned such valuable information about Iran's nuclear program, wouldn't they be making it public to try to increase the pressure on Iran? Second, how convenient that this alleged money is in U.S. accounts, which of course Amiri, now in Iran, has no access to thanks to U.S. sanctions.

But the most interesting sentence in the Post article is this: "The transfer of millions of dollars into Amiri-controlled accounts also seems to bolster the U.S. government's assertions that Amiri was neither abducted nor brought to the United States against his will." Well, it would, if there was such a transfer. The Post writes as if this is simple fact. But how do we know it is? Because "U.S. officials said." Did the Post see the bank statements, or simply take the word of "U.S. officials"? It seems to be the latter. Even if there are such statements, do we know that it isn't routine CIA practice to establish fake bank accounts in the names of people they abduct, so that, if necessary, they can later claim they were cooperating voluntarily?

If Amiri were really in control of that money, and if he really was here voluntarily, decided to return to Iran, and was given permission to do so by the U.S., wouldn't he have figured out a way to transfer the money out of the country or at least to a friend in the U.S. before announcing he had decided to return to Iran?

The entire story smells of black op to me.

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