Salon Radio: Kenneth Katzman on attacking Iran

An interview with one of the Beltway's leading Iran experts and advocates of an attack reveals the grotesque indifference and banality of evil of our foreign policy establishment.

Published October 24, 2008 2:57PM (EDT)

A new report on Iran was released yesterday by a Task Force co-chaired by former Senators Dan Coats (Rep-IN) and Chuck Robb (Dem-VA), and sponsored by a bipartisan organization created by four former Senate Majority Leaders, which recommended, among other things, that the next President immediately deploy military forces in the Persian Gulf in order to threaten and prepare for an attack on Iran, as well as order a naval blockade of its oil shipments, as a means of forcing them to cease all uranium enrichment, including for civilian purposes.  The Task Force included two Iran "experts" -- neocon Michael Rubin of National Review and the American Enterprise Institute, and Kenneth Katzman of the Congressional Research Service, both of whom embraced the Report's conclusions.

For Salon Radio, I spoke today with Katzman -- who emailed me yesterday about the post I wrote concerning the Report -- and I highly recommend listening to this interview, as Katzman's answers really reveal the grotesque indifference and banal evil that characterizes much of America's war-loving Foreign Policy Community. 

After giving him a couple of minutes in the beginning to defend the Report's rationale, we discuss whether the Task Force's recommended plan of action would violate the U.N. Charter and core Nuremberg principles; whether it is rational for Middle Eastern states to seek to acquire nuclear weapons in order to protect themselves from the deranged war-cheerleaders in Washington; whether the Task Force spent even a moment considering how many innocent Iranian civilians would be slaughtered by its desired plan of attack (.pdf), and several other aspects of this Report.

The discussion was roughly 20 minutes and can be heard by clicking PLAY on the recorder below.  A transcript will be posted shortly, though Katzman's tone in answering these questions is quite instructive and can, obviously, only be heard by listening, not by reading the transcript.

By Glenn Greenwald

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