Euro Factor to the Iran ‘Crisis’

February 12th, 2006 - by admin

Finian Cunningham / – 2006-02-12 09:22:41

(February 9, 2006) — The referral of Iran to the UN Security Council by the International Atomic Energy Agency is not a step towards resolving the presumed nuclear problem between that country and the ‘international community’. It is a step towards further confrontation, with the deliberate intention by the US-UK axis to provide political cover for its real aim: subjugation of Iran.

This is phase three of the Anglo-American ‘war on terror’ which, deciphered from its Orwellian doublespeak and put into intelligible language, means the ongoing Anglo-American war of aggression on humanity.

The truly worrying thing is that such are the contradictions between the reckless fantasies of Anglo-American neo-imperialism and the limits of its own power that the warmongers may be tempted to actually trigger the very outcome they say they are trying to prevent: a nuclear conflagration.

First of all, let us dispel the latest smokescreen from the IAEA. Iran is being reported to the UN Security Council for alleged breaches of IAEA protocols. But these protocols, such as research into the enrichment of uranium, were only ever put in place by Iran on a voluntary basis.

How can someone be in breach of something that they put forward in a non-binding, voluntary capacity? Besides, the ongoing IAEA arrangement was part of a quid pro quo in which the EU — Britain, France, Germany — would in return for Iran’s cooperation provide specific economic incentives and safeguards concerning Iran’s national security.

But as seasoned observer of non-proliferation issues Selig Harrison said: “The EU, held back by the US, has failed to honour this bargain.”

The recommencement of uranium enrichment is Iran’s sovereign prerogative. And the plain truth is that Iran has and will be doing nothing outside of the only legally binding statute governing the issue, the Non-Proliferation Treaty, which grants all signatory nations an “inalienable right to develop nuclear technology for peaceful, energy purposes,” as already pointed out in this newspaper recently by Ghani Jafar.

For two years Iran has been negotiating with the EU-3 over its nuclear programme. Iran’s considerable petroleum and gas reserves are nevertheless finite and like every other fuel supplier the country may indeed have reached ‘Peak’ — the technical term the oil industry uses to mean final reserves — lasting perhaps another two decades. Iran has been prudently making the transition to an alternative energy source — nuclear. (In the same way as US President George Bush urged his country during his State of the Union speech last week!)

Iran has always said that its nuclear programme is about civilian use of energy. Despite allowing the IAEA unprecedented access to its nuclear facilities, and the IAEA not being able to find any evidence of clandestine nuclear weapons production, the same sinister allegations and suspicions of ‘nuclear ambitions’ are relentlessly thrown at Iran by the US and EU.

Several real initiatives put forward by Iran in its efforts to resolve the latest diplomatic ‘impasse’ and head off a referral to the UN Security Council were haughtily dismissed by the EU-3 as “nothing new”. And calls for further dialogue by the Iranian foreign minister were rebuffed. It must be said that Britain has taken the lead in adopting this intransigent attitude by the EU troika.

Days before the IAEA ruling, British Prime Minister Tony Blair told his parliament that “not only has Iran breached its international nuclear obligations but it is exporting terrorism around the world.”

Clearly this is a soft cop, hard cop routine. There was never any intention of a reasonable, diplomatic ‘solution’. The real intention was to set up an appearance of a diplomatic process, which could then be presented as tried, exhausted and failed. Now, it’s over to the hard cop.

Just like phase one and two of the Anglo-American war on humanity in which Afghanistan and Iraq were placed in the firing lines, there were similar attempts to create a diplomatic facade. But all the while, the troops were being readied, the tanks cranked up and the bombers loaded. It is to their Machiavellian credit that the Anglo-Americans appear to have now managed to get the French, Germans, Chinese and Russians on board.

We are still some way off the trigger of aggression and these last four mentioned may have no intention of going all the way of endorsing Security Council sanctions. But as we have seen with Afghanistan and Iraq, Washington and London didn’t need UN sanctions to launch into aggression; they just need to create a false sense of crisis in world security. This same process is now happening once again.

The collision course with Iran is a central aim of the Project for the New American Century, the real manifesto for which Bush was elected. This geopolitical strategy for full-spectrum dominance has already taken considerable shape, with US-British military penetration into vast areas of the critical energy territories in Western and Central Asia. Iran being the second-largest source of petroleum and gas is obviously a prize even bigger than Iraq. Its strategic importance is underlined by Iran’s existing and potential geopolitical connections to Pakistan, India, China and Russia.

There’s also a revenge factor. Since the Americans and British were kicked out of the Islamic Republic of Iran in 1979 after more than two decades of a cosy arrangement with their brutal client, the Shah, there would be, for them, the immense satisfaction of ‘imperial recovery’.

But here’s the real trigger for a military attack on Iran. It’s Iran’s intention to challenge the all-dominant US petrodollar oil trade by setting up a rival euro oil market.

Many political commentators have pointed out that the deficit-ridden US and British economies have only been able to continue their unsustainable ways because the US dollar enjoys the artificial privilege of being the world’s reserve currency. The world’s two existing oil markets, the NYMEX in New York and the International Petroleum Exchange in London, both owned by US capital, insist on all oil transactions being conducted in US dollars.

For this reason, all countries must have substantial reserves of dollars to ensure vital supplies of fuel energy. This means that the US economy can go on accumulating stratospheric debts because they can just keep printing more dollars, knowing that the rest of the world will have to take them in order to keep their oil supplies coming.

American political analyst Mike Whitney points out that the US is now running a total debt of $8 trillion, which makes it by far the world’s biggest economic basket case.

Whitney said: “America’s currency monopoly is the perfect pyramid scheme. As long as nations are forced to buy oil in dollars, the US can continue its profligate spending with impunity. The only threat to this strategy is the prospect of competition from an independent oil exchange, forcing the faltering dollar to go nose to nose with more stable, debt-free currencies such as the euro.

“That would compel central banks to diversify their currency holdings, sending billions of dollars back to America and ensuring a devastating economic crash.”

Iran has already given notice to the world that it intends opening this new euro oil market next month. With the devastating blow that this move will cause to the US-British economies, we can expect Washington and Britain to precipitate a pre-emptive confrontation with Iran over its ‘nuclear ambitions’ and ‘threats’, using poor little (nuclear-armed-to-the-teeth) Israel as a proxy.

The profoundly disturbing contradiction is this: the Anglo-American neo-imperialists need to subjugate Iran for economic survival, yet their conventional military resources are pinned down in overstretched geopolitical adventures. The Anglo-American war on humanity could thus reach new depths of illegality and depravity, through the unleashing of nuclear weapons.

The writer is a newspaper journalist based in Dublin.

Disclaimer: The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the Centre for Research on Globalization. The Centre for Research on Globalization (CRG) at

© Copyright Finian Cunningham,, 2006

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