Sunday, January 15, 2006

Iran responsible for demise of the Taliban?!?

On Friday night, BBC radio’s Five Live did a short segment on the on-going issue of Iranian nuclear development, during the course of which presenter Peter Allen interviewed a Dr. Ali Ansari, a research fellow at Chatham House. The interview begins at just about the 2 hour mark of Friday’s Drive show. After re-capping the current situation, Ansari made what to me is a very strange assertion. When asked what he thought the West should now be doing about Iran’s nuclear program, he spoke of engaging in a “very vigorous diplomatic effort”, and then said:
When there were opportunities to be taken we missed them. You know, let’s not forget that the war in Afghanistan probably would not have succeeded as it did without Iranian help, and of course the Iranians were rewarded with the “axis of evil”. So I mean these sort of things…people have long memories in Iran and they say, “Well, we offered them opportunities and they didn’t take them.”
I guess it shouldn't come as a surprise to find someone on the BBC portraying a perfectly reasonable Iran as having been snubbed by Bush. But does anyone out there have the slightest idea what kind of “help” Iran provided which ensured the success of the US action in Afghanistan following 9/11?


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Chatham House - say no more. I usually stop listening when I hear that.

3:09 PM  
Blogger e m butler said...

just think ,would you invade a country surrounded by 3 others without permission or at least tated non-interference??

12:53 AM  
Anonymous Richard said...


Why would Iran's 'permission' be required? How could they refuse pemission for an invasion force largely of Afghans, and how could they interfere other than in sponsoring the terrorist atrocities they already do?

1:09 AM  
Blogger James Of England said...

Afghanistan is surrounded by five or, technically, six countries, most of whom have been relatively keen supporters of the US. Unsurprisingly, the Uzbeks and Tajiks were on the whole quite happy to see the Pashtuns kicked back a bit. If they hadn't supported us, then we would have needed to have been based elsewhere, in which case Iran's support might have been needed. Pakistan's also been a reasonable ally. I'm sure you're following the Bilateral Investment Treaty which should be finalised by the US and Pakistan this month.

I suspect that if Iranian bases had been our best bet, there wouldn't have been an invasion. Keep in mind that they didn't support Desert Storm either, and they had considerably less love for Saddam than for the Taliban. Can you find a statement of non-interference? As Richard said, it doesn't seem like Iran could do an awful lot, but it would be interesting if they'd taken a relatively Pro-US stance, as formal neutrality would appear to be.

8:40 AM  
Blogger Simon Lazarus said...

Of course Iran offered assistance.

They allowed hundreds of al-Qaeda and Taliban to slip into Iranian territory, where to this day they are protected. These include Usama bin Laden’s third oldest son, Sa’ad bin Laden, as well as al-Qa’ida “spokesman” Suleiman Abu G’aith.

Here is some further info you might be interested in:

from 2002:

"In a new book to be released this week, “See No Evil,” author and former CIA operative Robert Baer writes that Usama bin Laden met in July 1996 in Afghanistan with an Iranian intelligence officer to forge an alliance to conduct terror operations against the United States. “Although we never found out what happened at the meeting, we knew bin Laden intended to propose to Iran a coordinated terrorism campaign against the U.S.,” Baer writes.

So when this idiot says "Iran helped in Afghanistan," they are in fact aiding some of the anti-Karzai and anti-American warlords who profit off of heroin growing and smuggling.

Simon Lazarus

8:59 AM  

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