Friday, February 29, 2008


Ed Herman on the Nuclear Double Standard

Edward S. Herman is an outstanding critical thinker and political essayist. Below is an excerpt from a piece published last December entitled "Great and Little Satan Free to Aggress and Ethnically Cleanse-Their Targets Have No Right of Self Defense (or Any Other Right Questioned by the Satans)."
To see those Western allies greatly agitated over the possibility that Iran might have a nuclear program that at some future date would allow it to produce such weapons, while taking Israel's arsenal as a given not even worthy of mention, reflects a gross political double standard that is both racist and illustrative of that famous "clash of civilizations," with the clash coming from Western initiatives, actions and threats.

Gates and the Iranian Versus Israeli Threat

While this double standard is not even discussible in the Western mainstream it is considered a major issue and is debated in the Arab world. Thus, U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates was confronted with the double standard at a conference in Bahrain organized by the London-based International Institute for Strategic Studies, where Gates was urging the Arab states to press Iran to halt any nuclear activities. Gates was asked by Bahraini Minister of Labor Majeed al-Alawi whether Gates thought "the Zionist (Israeli) nuclear weapon is a threat to the region." Gates paused, and answered tersely: "No, I do not." A.P. reports that "Asked if U.S. acceptance of that was a double standard in light of Washington's pressure on Iran, Gates again said 'no,' and described the government in Jerusalem as more responsible than the one in Tehran. 'I think Israel is not training terrorists to subvert its neighbors. It has not shipped weapons into a place like Iraq to kill thousands of innocent civilians covertly,' said Gates. 'So I think that there are significant differences in terms of both the history and the behavior of the Iranian and Israeli governments.'" [1] This reportedly elicited a great deal of laughter among the Arab representatives present, but both the laughter and the issue at stake are outside the orbit of accepted thought in the West.

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