“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."

Monday, November 13, 2006

Daily Telegraph Exclusive On Iranian Plot To Groom bin Laden Successor

Iran plotting to groom bin Laden's successor

By Con Coughlin and George Jones, Political Editor
Last Updated: 2:20am GMT 14/11/2006

Iran is trying to form an unholy alliance with al-Qa'eda by grooming a new generation of leaders to take over from Osama bin Laden, The Daily Telegraph can reveal.

Western intelligence officials say the Iranians are determined to take advantage of bin Laden's declining health to promote senior officials who are known to be friendly to Teheran.

Tony Blair addressing the Lord Mayor's banquet last night
The revelation will deal a major blow to Tony Blair's hopes of establishing a "new partnership" with Teheran.

Addressing the Lord Mayor's banquet in London last night — an occasion traditionally used by the Prime Minister to set out the Government's foreign policy — Mr Blair said he wanted to launch a diplomatic initiative to secure peace in Iraq by establishing dialogue with Iran and ending threats of military force against the regime.

He confirmed that a major rethink of strategy was under way on both sides of the Atlantic as he offered Iran a partnership rather than isolation if it stopped supporting terrorism in Lebanon or Iraq and halted attempts to develop nuclear weapons.

With the British and American governments looking for an exit strategy from Iraq, the Prime Minister admitted that they needed Iran's co-operation to prevent the country descending into civil war and to secure an overall Middle East peace settlement.

But the revelation that Iran is working hard to establish a closer relationship with bin Laden's fanatics, who provoked the war against terrorism with the attacks on September 11 2001, is likely to undermine severely Downing Street's attempts to effect a rapprochement. Iran is also suspected of arming insurgent groups in southern Iraq – many of which have links to al-Qa'eda – that have been responsible for many of the roadside bomb attacks against British troops.

But intelligence officials have been most alarmed by reports from Iran that President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is trying to persuade al-Qa'eda to promote a pro-Iranian activist to a senior position within its leadership.

The Iranians want Saif al-Adel, a 46-year-old former colonel in Egypt's special forces, to be the organisation's number three.

Al-Adel was formerly bin Laden's head of security, and was named on the FBI's 22 most wanted list after September 11 for his alleged involvement in terror attacks against US targets in Somalia and Africa in the 1990s. He has been living in a Revolutionary Guard guest house in Teheran since fleeing from Afghanistan in late 2001.

Alarm over al-Qa'eda deepened yesterday with a Foreign Office warning that the group was determined to acquire the technology to carry out a nuclear attack on the West.

A senior Foreign Office official said that the terrorists were trawling the world for the materials and know-how to mount an attack using nuclear, chemical or biological weapons.

The official said: "We know that the aspiration is there, we know attempts to gather materials are there, we know that attempts to gather technologies are there."

In last night's speech, the Prime Minister said that he wanted to see constructive engagement with the whole of the Middle East.

"A major part of the answer to Iraq lies not in Iraq itself but outside it, in the whole of the region where the same forces are at work and where the roots of this global terrorism are to be found," he added.

"That is what I call a "whole Middle East" strategy.

"There is a fundamental misunderstanding that this is about changing policy on Syria and Iran. First, those two countries do not at all share identical interests. But in any event that is not where we start.

"On the contrary, we should start with Israel/Palestine. That is the core. We should then make progress on Lebanon. We should unite all moderate Arab and Muslim voices behind a push for peace in those countries but also in Iraq. We should be standing up for, empowering, respecting those with a moderate and modern view of the faith of Islam everywhere."

But Mr Blair's hopes of a dialogue with Teheran were dealt a further blow last night when President George W Bush rejected the notion that talks with Iran were the key to undermining the Iraq insurgency.

He insisted that Iran should pay the consequences for continuing work on its nuclear enrichment programme.

"It's very important for the"threat to our world security". Last night he was more measured on Iran.

"To be fair, they have a genuine, if entirely misplaced fear, that the US seeks a military solution in Iran. They don't," Mr Blair said.

Iran had already rejected the US's offer of the first direct talks for 30 years if it abided by the UN demand to suspend uranium enrichment. It was now using "pressure points" in the region to thwart America and Britain.

"So they help the most extreme elements of Hamas in Palestine; Hizbollah in Lebanon; Shia militia in Iraq," said Mr Blair.

He said Iran faced a clear choice: help the Middle East peace process, not hinder it; stop supporting terrorism; and abide by, not flout, international obligations.

"In that case a new partnership is possible, or alternatively they face the consequences of not doing so: isolation," he added.


  1. And this is all surprising to whom?

    Welcome to "you're still behind the curve", Mr Blair.
    Still trying to control the content, but failing, due to realities of the situation intruding on the storyline ...

  2. Rufus,
    I don't hope I'm wrong either. Why? Because the Islamists are hard wired to come after everyone else. Their "religion" is a killing one.
    It will be very hard on our civilization to do what is necessary because we have grown so effeminate and"civilized". Too PC.

    But it's coming.

    And when the dirty bomb knocks out the Holland Tunnel and Wall Street and the White House all in one day then the pacifists better find a place to hide for a long long time.
    Many of us will not brook their subversion masked as free speech. Law will break down and putting the country back on track will be the order of the day.

  3. Very few people thought their own Government warnings credible.

    Yes, but the remaining audence of the BBC is predisposed to the sort of people who think a mythical fascist-government-in-waiting-just-around-the-corner is more of a threat than real Islamoids or terrorists. Wankers.

  4. You get no argument from me fellow, you may want to explain to the audience what a wanker is. Good word.

  5. Actually it was PossumTater who first mentioned it to me as we were discussing nuclear bunker busters versus low detonation high yield nukes.
    He's good at the money quotes nad now I've taught him how to naw the tire valve off cars with old Kerry stickers on ''s a hoot.
    BTW he gave me a jar of what he said was Go-Bog juice, but I wasn't fall'in for it...looked too much like gatorade with an odor. he's a joker.

  6. rufus said:

    Habu, and Rat are right about one thing. This is going to end up in a Blood-bath of Biblical Proportions. If it was now, it would be small; but, it's going to be later, And it's going to be Huge. We WON'T escape the Consequences.

    The last Blood Bath of Biblical Proportions (the Second Thirty Year's War, 1914-1945) was imposed on the unwilling world by the power of the Industrial Revolution. But now we're in the Information Revolution, and informed people get to choose. Why would even the Muslims continue to choose the bloody path after the sleeping dragon of the west awakens to it's own peril?

  7. fellow peacekeeper said:

    Yes, but the remaining audence of the BBC is predisposed to the sort of people who think a mythical fascist-government-in-waiting-just-around-the-corner is more of a threat than real Islamoids or terrorists.

    Hence the movie "V for Vendetta" which probably came across in the UK as newsreel footage from 20 years hence.


    + Sign of the Cross

  8. I find that civilians who have never been around the military are clueless souls, enjoying the low hanging fruit of freedom without a thought of who gained the ground to plant the tree.

  9. habu1 said:

    I find that civilians who have never been around the military are clueless souls, enjoying the low hanging fruit of freedom without a thought of who gained the ground to plant the tree.

    Where was basic for Habu, I wonder. Was it Sand Dog, Orlando, or Great Mistakes? Was is Fort Lost in the Woods or the Island? Would Habu talk about incinerating millions of people if he was ever transiting the Pacific 400 miles from the nearest land (Wake Island) when ComNavGodPac decided to pull one of those funny Cold War drills where they make you think the balloon went up and all your loved ones back home were ashes?

  10. Why would even the Muslims continue to choose the bloody path after the sleeping dragon of the west awakens to it's own peril?

    It's hard wired into their religious DNA. Why the hell do you think I want to kill them first, just for fun..that's's for my freedom and your freedom, not just for the killing. I don't have any reservations about killing under those circumstances. I would never go shoot somebody cause their dog was barking ... it's them or us..just read their religious philosophy and's a self evident truth that they are first and foremost a killing religion. We sure as heck didn't make 'em that way, Mohammad did.

  11. Quantico and Lejuene, and then secret bases you never heard about..more than just Camp Peary or Harvey Point.

  12. and unless you've transited the Pacific more than 100x then you can continue. if not you're a minor leaguer.
    ever flown a Pilatus into Laos or Cambodia? ever been where if they catch you you're not covered by any conventions cause you are nobody to anybody?
    you're just a REMF.

  13. ping,zow,kong,zowee,crunch,thud

  14. time to turn in..gentle rest to all, may tomorrow be another great day.

  15. Wikipedia definition : Wanker is profane slang for a contemptible person, meaning literally one who wanks (masturbates). In Britain it is particularly used of someone (usually male) who is a self-obsessed show-off.

    That'd fit both the BBC and its audience.

    Frequent use of the term is usually associated with Oztraylians. As in "Jeez, ain't them poms a bunch o' wankers."

  16. in a word fellow, an Americanism: " jerkoff"