Prof. Rodney Shakespeare is a renowned political commentator and visiting professor of binary economics at Trisakti University in Jakarta, Indonesia. A co-founder of the Global Justice Movement, Shakespeare is a member of the Christian Council for Monetary Justice.
Prof. Rodney Shakespeare
Mr. Shakespeare has written several articles on the Middle East affairs, with a special focus on Iran, Bahrain and Syria. His latest book "The Modern Universal Paradigm" was published in 2007 by the Trisakti University publications.
He is a strong advocate of Iran, its people and its culture and in several articles has decried the unilateral, unjustifiable pressures of the United States and its allies on Iran.
What follows is the complete text of Iran Review’s interview with Prof. Shakespeare in which a number of questions on a range of issues including Iran’s nuclear program, the anti-Iranian economic sanctions of the United States and EU, the summit of the Non-Aligned Movement in Tehran, the assassination of Iranian nuclear scientists and the ongoing unrest in Syria were discussed.
Q: Dear Prof. Shakespeare; I want to start my questions with the controversy over Iran’s nuclear program. As you indicated in one of your articles, 16 American intelligence agencies testified that Iran does not have nuclear weapons. So, what are these devastating economic sanctions and political pressures for? Why Iran is under such an intensive pressure by the United States and its European allies while there’s no evidence confirming that Iran possesses nuclear weapons?
A: The Iranian Revolution in 1979 was not a governmental change; nor a regime change. It was a full-blooded Revolution. Being neither communist, nor Western capitalist, it was an assertion of religious, political and cultural independence the like of which the world had never seen before. More than anything else it is Iran’s desire to be independent of the West which infuriates the New World Order neo-con fascists and Western finance capitalism.
But there is a further aspect. All Western foreign policy is highly influenced, or controlled, by Zionism. The basic aim of Zionism is an expanded Zionist state in the lands from the eastern end of the Mediterranean right across to the Tigris and Euphrates. For that to happen every other Middle East state must be controlled, weakened or smashed apart so that it can never mount an effective opposition to Zionist expansionism.
Iran stands as an anti-Zionist castle and, in particular, it upholds the rights of the Palestinians and Al Quds. The sanctions and pressures and lies about Iran’s nuclear program are the means by which the Zionist-controlled West hopes to defeat Iran so as to allow Zionist expansionism.
Q: In your article "Time for sanctions against the USA," you argued that those who unlawfully impose sanctions on independent nations should be themselves sanctioned. Is there any way to realize this idea practically? Are the international community and organizations such as this Non-Aligned Movement whose leaders are gathering in Tehran capable of punishing the arrogant powers with economic sanctions?
A: I am delighted with this question; it is so important. Firstly the Big Idea has to be stated – those that sanction must themselves be sanctioned. Then, secondly, individual states seeing the possibility of the Big Idea, can work out how. The key to doing it is more regional agreements e.g., the Shanghai Co-operation Organization or the grouping of the South American nations. When one regional grouping starts to sanction, it can ask another grouping to do it as well. The Non-Aligned Movement is where these agreements/groupings are being quietly, and not so quietly, made.
Also the United Nations is a corrupt, failing organization. Something new is needed. It will take time but Iran is ideally placed to encourage the new regional groupings as well as pose the question as to exactly what form the new world organization should take. My feeling is that, rather than imitating the United Nations, a system of co-operating regional groupings is more likely.
There must be a Middle East free of nuclear weapons. NAM countries should all refuse to trade with Israel unless it destroys its nuclear weapons.
There must also be insistence that the only countries which can solve a problem e.g. Syria, Afghanistan, are those with political, economic, cultural, geographical and historical connections.
Q: The economic sanctions imposed by the United States and EU have restricted Iranians’ access to medicine, foodstuff and safe air travels. Aren’t these sanctions contrary to the principles of human rights while they’re affecting the daily lives of Iranians in such a devastating way?
A: The sanctions against Iran are a moral and humanitarian disgrace oppressing the Iranian people. But those friends meeting in Tehran are building a new type of international relations and will be having quiet discussions as to how best to try to mitigate the disastrous effects of the sanctions.
However, we must never forget that the Palestinians are another oppressed people and, even worse, there is a deepening threat of a major war in the Middle East, even one with nuclear bombs being used. The NAM conference, therefore, must act quickly on sanctions and, even if it cannot quickly stop the sanctions against Iran, it must immediately sanction Israel because more and more governments are recognizing that Israel is a pariah state not only oppressing the Palestinians but always conducting war whilst holding hundreds of atomic bombs.
For the sake of Palestine and for the sake of the hundreds of millions who will feel the effects of the disastrous war resulting from an attack on Iran, the NAM movement, representing the responsible countries of the world, must announce that Israel, like the former South Africa, is an affront to justice and peace.
And if that means that, over time, NAM sanctions extend to the countries controlled by Zionism e.g., the USA and the UK, then so be it.
Q: The United States and Israel have been long trying to portray Iran as an isolated, unpopular country in the world, but the summit of the Non-Aligned Movement in which representatives of 120 countries are participating demonstrated that it’s not the case. What’s your viewpoint? Is Iran really a secluded and friendless country? What’s your idea about the congregation of world leaders in Iran for the NAM summit?
A: It is regrettable, but not surprising, that the Western media are neglecting to cover the Non-aligned Movement meeting in Tehran. Like their governments the Western media are not free and ultimate control is in the hands of the Zionists. The USA government has even threatened other governments wanting to attend the NAM conference.
However, ignoring the USA, world leaders are flocking to NAM. Perhaps best of all, for its symbolism, is the visit of United Nations Secretary Ban Ki-moon. There is a sort of party atmosphere in Tehran because there is a popular host, leaders are being welcomed by friends and all are making new friendships and alliances. Those not at the party, of course, are wracked by jealousy, and will miss out on all the next "partying" as well.
Q: Since 2010, five Iranian nuclear scientists were cruelly assassinated and everybody blamed Mossad, MI6 and CIA for the killings; but why haven’t the United Nations and Security Council taken any concrete steps, at least in condemning these assassinations and bringing to justice the perpetrators? Why has the world been so silent on these flagrant terrorist acts?
Q: The UN and Security Council are essentially controlled by the USA and its cronies all of whose foreign policy is controlled by Zionism. All the American intelligence agencies, MI6 and even Mossad know that Iran is not building a bomb but there are Zionist cliques in the governments and these cliques are determined to keep the nuclear fears continuing as they try to organize an attack on Iran.
The world is silent because the West threatens bullies, and blackmails the heads of governments, often saying "You do what we say and take two million dollars or your son/daughter has a road accident…"
Q: What’s your position on the course of developments in Syria? You had once mentioned that Saudi Wahabbis are to blame over the Houla massacre and the fomentation of unrest in Syria during the past months. Is that so? How does the Saudi government benefit from strife and civil war in Syria?
A: The West has a deal with Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and all the Middle East autocratic governments. The deal is that the West will support the governments against the democratic aspirations of their people in exchange for those governments giving open, or secret, support for Israel and its policies.
The Zionists and the Americans want to smash up Syria as a way of weakening support for Iran. It is also known from Wikileaks that Saudi Arabia wants to attack Iran. Saudi Arabia is now openly playing the sectarian card to smash Syria on the way, it hopes, to having American support in smashing Iran.
But Saudi Arabia, like Turkey, is playing with fire which could easily result in both these countries coming under secessionist and/or democratic pressures. Saudi Arabia is the most unstable country of all. War in the Persian Gulf, for example, could easily result in the end of the Saudi and Bahraini monarchical regimes.
Q: Why have the United States and international organizations been silent about the ongoing violence in Bahrain and the suppression and detention of political activists? Isn’t this silence, concurrent with their repeated verbal attacks on Syria and Bashar Assad, some kind of a duplicitous and deceitful approach toward the concept of human rights? Do you have any updates on the conditions of political prisoners in Bahrain?
A: The United States, international organizations and international media are silent because Bahrain is part of that ring of autocratic states openly and/or secretly supporting Israel in exchange for the West supporting them against their own people. The West is completely deceitful and hypocritical about human rights. At a meeting in the House of Lords last Thursday there was no indication of any lessening of abuse in the Bahraini prisons and a definite increase in the torturing of young people.
Q: How do you evaluate the United States and Israel war threats against Iran? Are these war threats serious? Is Israel militarily and politically capable of launching an attack against Iran? What will be the consequences of such an attack for Israel and the region?
A: Israel is serious; the USA is less serious but cannot avoid being dragged in. Netanyahu and Barak are paranoid monsters intent on initiating an attack on Iran in such a way as to drag in the USA, because Israel could never win by itself. Some form of false flag attack is possible to start the war. The Israeli cabinet is split four – four, For and Against war, at present.
Any attack will result in a widespread war in the Middle East with some surprising consequences. The regimes of Saudi Arabia and Bahrain could be overthrown; Israel will be terribly battered so that its people revolt and the USA would get a bad shock because all its ships and bases in the area are vulnerable. The Western economy could collapse and in the Middle East the overthrow of autocratic governments will be speeded up.
Q: What impacts will the revolutionary wave of the Middle East, known as the Arab Spring, have on the political future of Israel? Will the Islamist government of Egypt deal with Israel in a friendly manner? What about the other Arab countries which are experiencing revolutions?
A: Israel is panicking about the Arab Spring, or Islamic Awakening developments. Iran is increasingly taking regional leadership, see the NAM conference, for example. Israel therefore sees war as its salvation before it is too late, from the Zionist point of view.
I am skeptical about most Middle East countries ever breaking really free from the West. For a start most of the intellectuals have been trained in Western universities and have no clear idea of how to get independence (the best way is to have a genuinely independent national bank)’
It is not good news that the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt is taking a big IMF loan (which gives the West control over Egypt). However, I expect Egypt to permanently open the Rafah crossing.
Q: And finally, will Iran and the West finally come to an agreement over Tehran’s nuclear program? What’s your prediction for the future of standoff over Iran’s nuclear program? Iranians have always complained that the West exercises double standards in dealing with the nuclear issue. While pressuring Iran, the West lets Israel get away with its nuclear arsenal which is said to possess some 200-400 atomic warheads. Is this true?
A: At the point where agreement is about to happen, the agreement will be torpedoed by either the USA, as happened with the Tehran Declaration of Iran, Brazil and Turkey, and or Israel. Neither country wants the agreement; they both want regime change, at least, in Iran.
Yes, of course it’s true that the West lets Israel get away with its nuclear arsenal of some 200-400 nuclear warheads, and some of them are hydrogen bombs.
By Kourosh Ziabari
August 29, 2012.
Kourosh Ziabari is an Iranian journalist and media correspondent. He writes for Tehran Times and Press TV.
Source: Kourosh Ziabari