U.S. Ambassador to Israel: America “Ready” to Strike Iran if Necessary

According to Washington’s envoy to Israel, the U.S. has plans in place to attack Iran to prevent it from developing nuclear weapons, if necessary.

In a speech to the Israel Bar Association, Dan Shapiro said the U.S. hopes it will not have to resort to military force.

“But that doesn’t mean that option is not fully available. Not just available, but it’s ready,” he said. “The necessary planning has been done to ensure that it’s ready.”

Iran remains steadfast in it’s position that their nuclear program is for peaceful purposes, like energy production. The U.S. and Israel suspect Iran is pursuing nuclear weapons.

The Obama White House continues to push diplomacy and economic sanctions as the way to go to stop Iran from obtaining Nukes.

Israel, while saying it would prefer a diplomatic solution, has expressed skepticism and says time is running out for effective military action.

President Obama has assured Israel that the U.S. is prepared to take military action if necessary, but Shapiro’s comments were the most explicit sign yet that preparations have been made.

In his speech, Shapiro acknowledged that time is running out.

“We do believe there is time. Some time, not an unlimited amount of time,” Shapiro said. “But at a certain point, we may have to make a judgment that the diplomacy will not work.”

The five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council and Germany are preparing for a May 23 meeting with Iran in Baghdad. Shortly after the meeting, the U.N. atomic agency is to release its latest report card on Iran’s nuclear efforts.

In Tehran on Thursday, top nuclear negotiator Saeed Jalili warned against Western pressure at next week’s talks, which are a follow-up to negotiations in Istanbul last month that all sides described as positive.

“Cooperation is what we can talk about in Baghdad,” Jalili said in comments broadcast on Iranian state TV. “Some say time is running out for the talks,” he added. “I say time for the (West’s) pressure strategy is running out.”

Israel’s military chief told the Associated Press last month that other countries as well as Israel have readied their armed forces for a potential strike against Iran’s nuclear sites.

Iran Executes Alleged Mossad Agent

“The end of the road has nothing except repentance — and rope,” Majid Jamali Fashi was quoted as saying just moments before he was hanged for the January 2010 bombing that killed Tehran University physics professor Masoud Ali Mohammadi.

He was sentenced to death for crimes of “defiance of God,” or using arms against Iran’s Islamic government, and spreading “corruption on the earth,” or damaging public security and order, according to the official IRNA news agency.

At least four Iranian scientists have been killed since Mohammadi was murdered with a bomb rigged motorcycle. Iran blames Israel’s Mossad spy agency, the CIA and Britain’s MI-6 for targeting Iranian scientists in an attempt to halt Tehran’s nuclear ambitions.. Washington and London have denied any roles.

Israel Foreign Ministry spokesman Yigal Palmor said Tuesday the slayings “are not connected to us in any way.”

Israel and others have pointed the finger at Iran for alleged revenge attacks, including a February bombing in New Delhi that wounded an Israeli diplomat’s wife and the discovery of a bomb in Bangkok that is believed to be linked to a plot to target Israeli diplomats. In Azerbaijan’s capital of Baku, security officials arrested 22 suspects last March that were allegedly hired by Iran to commit terrorist attacks against U.S. and Israeli embassies.

In Vienna, meanwhile, Iran and the U.N.’s nuclear agency held a second day of talks over suspicions that Tehran might have tested atomic arms technology at a military site. Iran denies the claims, insisting it only seeks nuclear reactors for energy and medical research.

Hundreds of Israelis March in Tel Aviv Against War with Iran

Last week, graphic designers Ronny Edry and his wife, Michal Tamir, unknowingly began a Facebook phenomenon when they uploaded a poster depicting Edry and his daughter with the words, “Iranians, we will never bomb your country, we [heart] you.”

That one image sparked a movement, with hundreds, if not thousands, of images sent from Israel, Iran, and elsewhere in the world, in support of their message.

“My Israeli friends, I do not hate you; I do not want war. love, Peace,” read many Iranian posters that were posted by Iranians to the new group page.

“Dear Israeli Friends and World! Iranians love peace and we hate hate!…and we don’t need any Nuclear Power to show it!” one poster caption stated.

“I’m from Iran and love your idea and your efforts against war and for peace. I am really happy to get to know you and people like you, and hope to find more people like you. Here in Iran the situation is complicated and many people hate the governments and their bullshit,” another anonymous Iranian wrote in a poster he published.

This past Saturday hundreds of Israelis marched from Tel Aviv’s Habima Square to the city’s Meir Park to protest against the possible Israeli strike on Iran’s nuclear facilities. The march was not endorsed by the leaders of the Facebook campaign.

 

Rep. Peter King: “Be Afraid, Be Very Very AFRAID!!”

Rep. Peter King (R-N.Y.) warned Wednesday, ahead of a committee to “educate” Americans and Congress about the threat of Iran, that there are hundreds, maybe even thousands, of Hezbollah agents in the U.S. capable of launching terror attacks against the U.S.

“The American intelligence community believes we are very much at risk for an attack by Iranian operatives, which would be Hezbollah, that is a terrorist-trained force in this country. It really is the ‘A’ team of international terrorism, far more sophisticated than Al Qaeda,” the chairman of the Homeland Security Committee said on CNN’s “Starting Point.”

King explained that Hezbollah operatives have been inside the U.S. for years now for the purpose of fundraising and recruiting.

He went on to say that while the conventional wisdom until recently has been that they were not necessarily stationed in the U.S. to carry out attacks, that could change given the recent tension between Israel and Iran over questions surrounding Iran’s nuclear program.

“We do know that a number of them have been trained as terrorists, so the question is, how quickly they can be made operational, and would they carry out an attack?” he said. “We estimate it to be at least in the hundreds maybe the thousands of Hezbollah agents here in this country. And again, especially if things intensify between Israel and Iran, between the United States and Iran, could Iran take preemptive action in this action through Hezbollah?”

King cited a murder plot allegedly directed by the Iranian government to kill the Saudi ambassador to the U.S. last year as a further warning sign of the potential threat that the country poses to Americans.

If Israel attacks Iran, the congressman warned that the U.S. could certainly “find itself implicated or involved” in the crisis.

“Having said that, I don’t think we can rule out an Israeli attack,” King said. “ I think we have to keep all the pressure out there. The fact that there can be complications is not a reason why Israel shouldn’t do it or we shouldn’t do it. We have to make sure whatever we do that it is going to work and realize that Iran cannot be allowed to get a nuclear weapon.”

Wednesday’s congressional hearing will include witnesses from the New York Police Department and others from the intelligence community.

U.S. Official: “Israel Teams with Terror Group to Kill Iran’s Nuclear Scientists”

According to U.S. officials, Israel’s secret service is training, financing and arming an Iranian dissident group to assassinate Iranian nuclear scientists.

The group, known as the People’s Mujahedin of Iran, has been declared a terrorist organization by the U.S. They have been accused of killing American servicemen and contractors in the 1970s and supporting the hostile takeover of the U.S. Embassy in Tehran before breaking with the Iranian mullahs in 1980.

Five Iranian nuclear scientists have been killed since 2007  often by motorcycle riding assailants attaching small magnetic bombs to the exterior of the victims’ cars.

U.S. officials, speaking on condition of anonymity to NBC, said the Obama administration is aware of the assassination campaign but has no direct involvement.

“The relation is very intricate and close,” said Mohammad Javad Larijani, a senior aide to Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Iran’s supreme leader, speaking of the MEK and Israel.  “They (Israelis) are paying … the Mujahedin. Some of their (MEK) agents … (are) providing Israel with information.  And they recruit and also manage logistical support.”

In one case, he said, Mossad agents constructed a replica of an Iranian nuclear scientist’s home so that the assassins could learn the layout prior to the attack.

The Iranian government learned of the attacks and the links between Israel and MEK when they captured and interrogated one of the assassins after a  failed attack in late 2010 and the materials found on him, Larijani said.

The MEK points to a statement calling the allegations “absolutely false.”

There are also unconfirmed reports in the Israeli press that Israel and the MEK were involved in a Nov. 12 explosion that destroyed the Iranian missile research and development site at Bin Kaneh, 30 miles outside Tehran.  Among those killed was Maj. Gen. Hassan Moghaddam, director of missile development for the Revolutionary Guard, and a dozen other researchers.

Unlike the assassinations, Iran claims the missile site explosion was an accident; the MEK denied any involvement.

In 1997, the State Department designated MEK as a terrorist group. An unclassified 40-page summary of the organization’s  activities going back more than 25 years was sent to Congress in 1998. The paper was written by Wendy Sherman, who was then an aide to Secretary of State Madeleine Albright and is now undersecretary of state for political affairs.

The report, which was obtained by NBC News stated that: “The Mujahedin  (MEK) collaborated with Ayatollah Khomeini to overthrow the former shah of Iran. As part of that struggle, they assassinated at least six American citizens, supported the takeover of the U.S. embassy, and opposed the release of the American hostages.”  In each case, the paper noted, “Bombs were the Mujahedin’s weapon of choice, which they frequently employed against American targets.”

According to law enforcement officials speaking on the condition of anonymity, in 1994 the MEK made a pact with terrorist Ramzi Yousef a year after he masterminded the first attack on the World Trade Center in New York City. Yousef built an 11-pound bomb that MEK agents placed inside one of Shia Islam’s greatest shrines in Mashad, Iran, on June 20, 1994At least 26 people, mostly women and children, were killed and 200 wounded in the attack.

 

 

 

 

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