Spooks + Politicians + Hacks = War

I keep return­ing to this sub­ject, but it is troub­ling me deeply. Read­ing the runes, all things point to the fact that we are being act­ively groomed for yet another Middle East­ern war.

As I’ve said before, the pic­ture is clearly being drawn for those who wish to join the dots. At the end of last year the entire US intel­li­gence infra­struc­ture form­ally assessed that Iran had aban­doned its nuc­lear weapons pro­gramme in 2003. This, of course, did not suit the hawk­ish neo-con agenda in the States.

Then Mossad, the Israeli intel­li­gence out­fit, con­veni­ently pops up claim­ing that it has new, shit-hot intel­li­gence that dis­proves the US assess­ment. Mossad passes this on to the heads of MI6 and the CIA, and shortly after­wards the Prime Min­is­ter of Israel, Ehud Olmert, vis­its George Bush on a state visit to Amer­ica to dis­cuss his “con­cerns” about Iran.

The third part of the equa­tion fell into place this week. Con Cough­lin, writ­ing in the right-wing UK national news­pa­per, The Daily Tele­graph, unques­tion­ingly regur­git­ates inform­a­tion from anonym­ous intel­li­gence sources who state that Iran is now devel­op­ing weapons grade uranium.

Cough­lin has form. For many years he worked for The Sunday Tele­graph, oth­er­wise known as the in-house journal of MI6. Read­ers of this site will know that MI6 has a sec­tion called Inform­a­tion Oper­a­tions (I/Ops), which manip­u­lates the media either by plant­ing false stor­ies or mas­sa­ging the facts to suit MI6’s interests. Well, rather embar­rass­ingly, Coughlin’s involve­ment in one such oper­a­tion was exposed a few years ago.

In 1995 he was shown “inform­a­tion” by an MI6 officer whom he described as “a senior bank­ing offi­cial” prov­ing that Col­onel Gadaffi’s son, Saif Al Islam, was involved in a money-laundering scam with Iran. Cough­lin duti­fully repor­ted this, and this story was used by the For­eign Office to deny Al Islam a visa to live in the UK.

What Cough­lin, and his then editor Dominic Lawson (whose brother-in-law was a senior MI6 officer), didn’t appear to know as he took this story down in short­hand, was the MI6 officer was from I/Ops, and that he was plant­ing this story in the press to ensure that the son of a then Pri­or­ity 1 Joint Intel­li­gence Com­mit­tee tar­get could not come over the UK and live high on the hog. Too polit­ic­ally embar­rass­ing, old bean.

Al Islam nat­ur­ally sued, and The Sunday Tory­graph duly settled out of court once it real­ised that intel­li­gence whis­tleblower David Shayler knew the inside track on this libel­lous story and was pre­pared to give evid­ence in court.

Cough­lin was also instru­mental in get­ting stor­ies link­ing Sad­dam Hus­sein to WMD and Al Qaeda into the national UK media in the run-up to the Iraq war, although the vigi­lent reader will notice these stor­ies often con­tra­dict them­selves. So it’s inter­est­ing that he’s now break­ing more “news” sug­gest­ing pre­cisely what Mossad and gov­ern­ments of the UK and the USA would have us believe: that Iran is a real, devel­op­ing nuc­lear threat, and that there is a sound case for war.