The Reductio ad Absurdum of Iran Containment | Jahandad Memarian

My final thought of the day…….we have been playing the containment game with Iran since 1979….but what has the impact been?

If you are not sure then maybe this article will help your understanding and settle some of the confusion around the Iran situation……

The Reductio ad Absurdum of Iran Containment | Jahandad Memarian.

Could Annexation Help The Process?

Before I begin my day of writing I just wanted to ask…..since the news is as boring as watching curling…..could the media be manipulating the news and its reports so that it does not interfere with the coverage of the Sochi Olympics?  Just asking.

Today is my day in the barrel….the Middle East barrel that is……I have written about the ‘plan’ that Kerry has to bring about a peaceful end of the Israeli/Palestinian conflict…..like I said…..everybody has a plan and none have come even close to ending the violence peacefully……

And then I read something that made me sit back and say…HUH?  It was so unusual for this conflict that I had to read it several times to be sure that I was not hallucinating……

Details of the closed-door negotiations between Israel and the Palestinian Authority suggest the two sides are much closer together than previously indicated, with the two sides just “percentage points” away on land swaps.

Israel is looking to annex 10 percent of the West Bank in the deal, while the PA is said to be favoring a deal that caps the annexations at 3 percent, with land exchanges.

3 percent or 10 percent isn’t as big a difference as it sounds, as either would encompass the vast majority of Israel’s settlements. Some of the settlement blocs south of Jerusalem are apparently agreed to by both sides, while some others are still in dispute.

The suggestion of an independent Palestine including 90 percent of the West Bank is hugely promising, with discussion of them also getting some land in the Negev, bordering the Gaza Strip, as part of the settlement of the refugee issue.

On the other hand, Israel has coalition partners threatening to withdraw and collapse the coalition if they get close to such a deal. The discussion of percentages in the West Bank also didn’t include the question of East Jerusalem, which Palestinians envision as their future capital and which Israel has already annexed outright.

All that took me by surprise and after thinking about it I find the notion a bit ‘outta the box….and being so just may have a chance…..that is if all parties agree and Benji can get past the blood thirsty right wing of Israel………any thoughts or suggestions?

Yet Another Peace Plan

Every prez since Carter has had a ‘plan’ for the cessation of hostilities in the Middle East….and so far ALL have been about as successful as me looking like Brad Pitt…..but that has not stopped them from naming some plan or another…I remember the biggest farce was the “Road To Peace”….that ‘road’ was a cul-de-sac……went absolutely NOWHERE just like so many other plans from our not so distant past……

I bring all this up because….guess what?……(wait for it)…….Kerry has a…..you guessed it….a plan.

Here is how it will deal with some of the most contentious issues. The agreement would permit between 75 and 80 percent of Israeli settlers in the West Bank through land swaps. What settlements would remain, and what Israel would cede was not discussed in the briefings, but it’s likely that large settlements like Maale Adumim, where the controversial Soda Stream is produced, will become part of Israel under the agreement.

A security zone would be established along the Jordan River. That’s different from a security zone inside the Jordan Valley. A security zone along the river could be a mile or two wide, and would consist of electrified fences and unmanned aerial vehicles of some kind. The Israel Defense Force would be part of the armed forces policing this zone, but only for a specified time. Abbas has mentioned three years. The Israelis have talked about ten years.

Palestinian refugees would receive some kind of compensation, but so would Jewish refugees who fled, and in many cases were forced to flee, places like Iraq Syria, and Egypt after 1947. (Estimates are that about 500,000 of these refugees settled in Israel between 1947 and 1972.)  That provision, one of the Jewish leaders commented, was meant as a “sweetener” to the Israelis. The Palestinians would recognize Israel as the nation of the Jewish people, and the Israelis would recognize Palestine as the nation of the Palestinian people. But one critical issue was left vague and unresolved. The framework will not propose a way of dealing with the future of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and Palestine. “That’s the biggie,” one person involved in the calls commented.

Actually, from my point of view the security zone sounds good……the compensation thing sounds good but I see this being a problem…a problem that could not be insurmountable…just difficult….and then there is the one sticking point…settlements.  This will most likely be the killing field on which this agreement would die……..for one there seems to be NO way to get Israel to stop building these on Palestinian land…..and two, the settlers……most of whom would kill every Palestinian they encountered….

And then there is the Negev, the desert in southern Israel……I have often written that if you want settlers let them go there to build…..but then there is a section in the Kerry plan on this spot……

The “Kerry Plan” on a framework for Israel-Palestinian peace continues to morph in some surprising directions, with the latest idea from the US reportedly to compensate Palestine for annexed West Bank settlements with parts of the Negev.

The Negev, the mostly desert southern half of Israel, includes a lot of empty territory, and a lot of the development in the region has centered around it being a dumping ground for minorities in Israel.

The plan is to offer part of the Negev, presumably bordering the Gaza Strip, and let the Palestinians use that as a place for Palestinian refugees abroad to return in return for giving up the claim of a right of return to Israel.

What can I say…..this plan has more realistic sections than most of the plans from the past……as with all negotiations there will be stumbling blocks but a good plan….as good if not a bit better than most……it will be an interesting negotiation…….

And then there is a statement made by the Israeli PM……..a statement he made in front of some of his most ardent supporters…the extreme right wing…..Zionists if you will……

Speaking to members of the Likud-Beytenu Knesset faction, Netanyahu said that PA chief Mahmoud Abbas “knows full well” that without such recognition there could be no agreement.

Such recognition would be a major price for the PA to pay, and Netanyahu does not believe the PA is willing to pay it.

“If they do not make this concession there cannot be an agreement,” Netanyahu said, adding that he did not believe the PA would be willing to make it.
Israel, Netanyahu said, would not surrender on this key demand, because otherwise there would be no guarantee that the PA would stop making more demands for territorial concessions, even after the agreement.

As much as I hate to agree with this person…..he may be right…..I realize that it is a sticky point of contention but without recognition Israel will only bog the negotiations down to a halt……

Here is a thought of mine…maybe if they could find a way to curb the killing of so many civilians there might be a chance for a statement in the near future that they would like…..just my thought on that….

I will be watching.

State of Foreign Policy: Not a Sharp Picture | The Fiscal Times

I have been a critic of the Obama admin on several occasions…..but their, in my opinion, biggest let down is in the area of foreign policy…..they have had a few successes, if we may call them that, but overall I am skeptical that much will improve for the duration of this admin……

State of Foreign Policy: Not a Sharp Picture | The Fiscal Times.

We Are Under Attack!

Let’s talk about international situations….I mean even curling is more exciting than the politics of the day………

No this is not similar to the Grover’s Mill incident of 1938 where a radio program had residents convinced that they were under attack by Martians……this attack is from stuff I was reading over the weekend…..there were some outlandish claims that we were essentially under attack…because why?

The Iranian Navy is approaching the US maritime borders….say huh?

Iran says it has launched warships with orders to approach US maritime borders in the Atlantic ocean, according to the semi-official Fars news agency. “This move has a message,” an Iranian admiral was quoted as saying. That message: stand up against the US and its allies for stationing vessels in the Persian Gulf. A US defense official told Reuters that he doubted the claim, but said that “ships are free to operate in international waters.” The issue dates back to September 2011, when Iranian Rear Admiral Habibollah Sayyari said his country would place ships near US maritime borders, RT.com reports. He described the mission as tit-for-tat over “the arrogant powers that are present near our maritime borders.” The US and its allies hold regular naval exercises in the Gulf, saying they want to keep the waterway free for 40% of the world’s seaborne oil exports. The Iranian launch consists of a helicopter-carrying gun ship and a destroyer on a 3-month mission, the BBC reports, so it’s likely the same vessels Iran sent out about three weeks ago.

The biggest outrage I found was the fact that they would be so bold as to send their navy into this situation……STOP!  Now think about it!

They are doing nothing different than the US….whenever China or Russia is having naval exercises we send some of our navy to close proximity….just in case…….the Iranians did the same thing……the US and others are having exercises in the Persian Gulf and Iran is nervous…..I could say for good reason…..I mean we have a couple of well ‘respected’ senators calling for action, military action, to be used against Iran.

What they have done is just a move on the international chess board…that is all…nothing to have a stroke over…..