Who does Guy talk to for insight and critical analysis of this gas-on-the fire trip? To "officials traveling with Secretary Gates" and "former Defense Department liaison to the Saudis, Peter Rodman" (what a surprise). From these "officials" we learn that "the Gulf Arab states and Egypt and Jordan have two regional fears: one of a US withdrawal from Iraq and two, an ascendant Iran." Now that is some newsflash! From Rodman we get this gem:
"These countries have many options, they can just submit to Iranian domination or they can pursue a nuclear weapon program of their own which they may be flirting with or attempting to. The far preferable course for them is to have confidence in the Americans to be their backstop..."The ramp-up for war with Iran pervades NPR coverage. Yesterday also featured a book recommendation from novelist Dalia Sofer who equates post-1979 Iran with Mussolini's fascist Italy, including it's anti-Semitic laws (I wonder what Iran's Jews would think of that?) Try to imagine for a moment if NPR would dare air a Palestinian author who equated the Israeli government with Mussolini's Italy- I think not. After all, it took them months to air former Pres. Jimmy Carter when he dared make the obvious comparison of Israeli occupation to apartheid.
Also I noticed during the news headlines that Flintoff reported on the deaths of three US soldiers and quoted "military officials" asserting that the soldiers were killed by an Iranian-supplied explosively formed penetrator (as usual, not a bit of proof is offered).