This post began life as a short response to NJArtist’s comment on last night’s news feed.
However, my “brief” response took on a life of its own and grew very quickly. As I’ve said to Afonso on more than one occasion, “if a comment is longer than five hundred words it is not a comment, it is a post.” When I did a word count, this thing had become more than a thousand words (including the excerpt). Thus it morphed itself into a post.
[Hint to Afonso: start your own blog for windy comments-cum-posts. Then you can go and do likewise. We would be most appreciative and would gladly link to you in our blog roll, especially if you write it in English for the mono-linguists among us, me included.]
Now for the story…
The link in last night’s news feed was to further information on that radioactive pirate ship which killed off a number of its looters. When the Baron first posted his speculation on the incident it caused a fair amount of comment.
In fact, Iranian Death Ship drew a goodly share of doubtful response, including outright ridicule. Just read the titles of some of the trackbacks in that post of the Baron’s to get a flavor for what other bloggers thought of our wisdom — not to mention integrity — for even talking about it.
That’s why I put the link up in last night’s news feed to a post entitled “Iran Ship was a Dirty Bomb, Part 2”. As I said in the feed, this story is quite long. It brings in a number of plausible motivations for maintaining a shroud on the whole incident.
Not being particularly a critic of George Bush (as commenter, pleas, has noted) this story is not one I enjoyed reading.
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On the other hand, as y’all have maintained, it’s all rather speculative. But what are we left with besides speculation when any “news” available has been so thoroughly blocked? The usual cover-up steps seem to have been taken, but does that make the more ominous aspects of this story less accurate? It is hard to say.
Blocking all news leaks and then ridiculing the messenger contaminates whatever evidence might be available for verification. People tend to yawn and wander away as all the now-corrupted details are slowly sucked down to their tomb in the memory hole. Not a pleasant sound.
If you’ll note the trackbacks to the first post, among other ummm…”tepid” responses is a blog whose owner condescends to title his reaction “A Reminder Of Why I Have Gates of Vienna On The Same List As Boing-Boing”. I haven’t a clue as to what/who Boing-Boing is, but obviously he didn’t put us in good company for being so rash as to put this story up for all to see while speculating about its veracity.
But, again, isn’t that how information gets buried in the first place? Enough heaps of ridicule and stone-walling and we end up with segments of the population who become sensitized to conspiracy theories. That is one of the sequelae of being lied to and misdirected.
Obviously, this is not my area of expertise. Were the Baron around, I’d leave it to him to ponder the implications of the various claims presented in “Part 2”. However, is his absence I will say that this has an Occam’s Razor feel to it.
Among other points, Part 2 says:
Russian sources indicate that the ship was carrying a “highly radioactive” cargo in specially built” containers and that this cargo was falsely listed in the ship’s manifest. Also, there were many falsities in the manifest, to include a false listing of the cargo, “chemicals,” “rocks,” “oil,” or “iron ore” and other fictions, and the destination of it. A subsequent investigation into the alleged German firm to whom the ‘chemicals and ‘machine parts’ were to be delivered proved that there was no such German firm involved. At the request of American authorities, the Russians have refused to release any further information.
I have a correct copy of the ship’s real manifest that a U.S. Navy source faxed me about two hours ago. There was no rocket fuel on board. Her cargo contained “a significant quantity” of radioactive waste from China, in lead-lined and secured cargo containers. The ship was never boarded by anyone from the time she left Nanjing in China until the Somali pirates grabbed her. Sixteen pirates died within two weeks, of heavy radiation poisoning, and three more are expected to die. An international force consisting of American, Russian, French and Dutch ships were involved in blockading the ship and preventing her from leaving Somalian waters.
A “ransom” of $250,000 was eventually paid by the U.S., the ship boarded by the Navy, her cargo secured and the crew interrogated and eventually released and the ship was moved, under her own power and with an American crew, to the Muscat port where the U.S. Navy has docking rights. Her manifest was entirely false. The ship was not going to Rotterdam and there was no “German businessman” to take charge of the fictional cargo.
The entire matter has been shut up and you will never see any mention of it in any mainstream media. The matter is now considered closed.
There still remain a number of questions that need to be answered. [my emphasis here – D] Both [in] Israel, and at her behest, from Washington, there has been a great outpouring of animosity directed at Tehran, and many threats; for economic sanctions by the United States and overt attacks by Israel. In light of this past behavior, the most important question is why this incident, with its horrifying implications, has been studiously ignored, even shut down, by both countries.
Perhaps the reason might lie in the fact that Bush is planning to announce his intention to open a ‘US Interest Section’ in Tehran just after the presidential elections on November 4th. This would follow a period of almost 30 years when diplomatic relations between the two countries were broken off. The movers behind this effort are U.S. Secretary of State, Condoleezza Rice and a number of high-level officials in the Department of State, the CIA and more recently by Secretary of Defense, Robert Gates, and the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
He compares the US behavior here with how we handled the debacle in Georgia. Bush’s part in both makes for intriguing reading…if this blogger’s prediction regarding Bush’s post-election plans to open a US “Interest Section” in Tehran turn out to be true, then perhaps this revelation will lend credence to the rest of his story. Since we’re dealing with a short time frame here, his thesis will be up for examination very soon.
I would be most interested to hear what those more expert in matters of intel have to say about this “Part 2”. Anyway, the comment thread on the “Death Ship” post was getting long, so this might be the place to begin anew with your contemplations on the subject.
I second NJ artist: at the very least please read the story.