Wednesday, May 28, 2008

MID EAST CLIPS

The George W Bush administration plans to launch an air strike against Iran within the next two months, an informed source tells Asia Times Online, echoing other reports that have surfaced in the media in the United States recently. Two key US senators briefed on the attack planned to go public with their opposition to the move, according to the source, but their projected New York Times op-ed piece has yet to appear.

The source, a retired US career diplomat and former assistant secretary of state still active in the foreign affairs community, speaking anonymously, said last week that that the US plans an air strike against the Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps. The air strike would target the headquarters of the IRGC's elite Quds force. Asia Times

Britain and other European governments should break from the US over the international embargo on Gaza, former US president Jimmy Carter told the Guardian y. Carter, visiting the Welsh border town of Hay for the Guardian literary festival, described the EU's position on the Israeli-Palestinian dispute as "supine" and its failure to criticise the Israeli blockade of Gaza as "embarrassing". . . Carter described western governments' self-imposed ban on talking to Hamas as unrealistic and said everyone knew Israel was negotiating with the organization through an Egyptian mediator, Omar Suleiman. Suleiman took the Hamas ceasefire offer to Jerusalem last week. . . Last night, before a packed crowd at Hay, Carter spoke of his "horror" at America's involvement in torturing prisoners, saying he wanted the next US president to promise never to do so again. He left an intriguing hint that George Bush might even face prosecution on war crimes charges once he left office. When pressed by Philippe Sands QC on Bush's recent admission that he had authorized interrogation procedures widely seen as amounting to torture, Carter replied that he was sure Bush would be able to live a peaceful, "productive life - in our country". Sands, an international legal expert, said afterwards that he understood that to be "clear confirmation" that while Bush would face no challenge in his own country, "what happened outside the country was another matter entirely". Guardian