While the Bush government is waving cynical flags of freedom and democracy over devastated, torn and sold-out Iraq, the US are already swarming over their next target in the Middle East. Iran reports US military reconnaissance flights over its territory and undercover operations on its soil, among which operations by the Iraqi Mujahedeen-e Khalq, a terrorist group trained and financed by US intelligence services, and Kurd militia trained by Israel. The aim of these operations is to gather information on Iran's defense systems and to secure and extend a covert infrastructure inside Iran of US and Israeli agents and assets. The question is no longer if the US are going to invade Iran but when, and which role Israel is going to play in it.
The emphasis of the US and Israeli governments on the dangers of Iran's nuclear program reminds of the propagandistic statements about Iraq's alleged possession of weapons of mass destruction. It serves as an excuse for military intelligence operations, including those performed by the UN, and gaining international support for an aggressive take-over of Iran. At a time when President Bush, Secretary of State Rice and Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld are trying to restore relationships with European administrations by calling for a diplomatic solution of conflicts in the Middle East, the Bush government also announced a drastic increase of the US defense budget. It's clear that this sudden call for diplomacy does not mark a genuine change in US foreign policies but only masks a military need to win time, gain strength and obtain intelligence for the next violation of international laws and agreements.
One of the pillars of the US economy is its military industrial complex. It is estimated that the defense budget takes up more than 50 percent of all spending by the US government. The US military industrial complex is also the world's largest single consumer of fossil fuel and consequently the world's largest single polluter. The only reason why the US have never agreed on any restrictions on its consumption of fossil fuel is that they would mean serious impediments to its military industries and power. Fossil fuel is its Achilles' heel. This makes global environmental movements and agreements not only necessary tools to save this planet but also important political, and even strategic, weapons to check US imperialism.
One of the most aggressive exponents of the US military industrial complex is Halliburton, a Houston based company specialised in oil development, military logistics and large-scale rebuilding projects. Halliburton's interest lies in war and its aftermath, and the company has a powerful representative in the Bush administration in its former chief executive Dick Cheney. Despite the official US economic sanctions against Iran, Halliburton has done business in oilfield service work with the Iranian government for years. This only demonstrates how hypocritical and opportunistic US pressure on European governments is to impose further economic sanctions on "terrorist state" Iran. In fact, European companies are pressed to freeze and withdraw their investments in Iran so that US companies like Halliburton can move in.
The "war on terror" in which the US are trying to involve European administrations, serves no other interests than those of the US military industrial complex. By labelling Iran a "terrorist state" and hammering away at its alleged support to Hezbollah and development of nuclear arms, the US administration tries to conceal its military need for Iran's vast sources of fossil fuel, which it seems determined to get hold of, one way or another, just like it did in Iraq. Driven by its ever-growing need for fossil fuel, the US military industrial complex has plunged the world into deep military, political and environmental crises. At the moment and with the help of Israel, it is on the verge of deepening these crises in Iran.
How closely the interests of the US military industries and Israel are connected in the Middle East and how much these interests clash with European interests became clear when in 1981 Israeli bombers destroyed the Osirak nuclear power plant near Baghdad, which was being constructed with French and Italian support. Although at the time Israel's strike against this civil facility was officially condemned in Washington, ten years later Washington sent the commander of the Israel Air Force a framed satellite photo of the destroyed reactor with the inscription: "With thanks and appreciation for the outstanding job you did on the Iraqi nuclear program in 1981, which made our job much easier in Desert Storm!" The photo was signed by Halliburton's Dick Cheney, then US Secretary of Defense and now Vice-President. We have a hunch who is going to sign the next satellite photo.
For an excellent article on the US military industrial complex by Dr. Joel