US-Iran Escalation: Iran Arrests 30 US Spies As It Builds Venezuelan Missile Base; America Sends A Third Aircraft Carrier To Persian Gulf

Tyler Durden's picture

A week ago Die Welt reported that, in what may soon be a repeat of the Cuban missile crisis, US arch-enemy Iran, following a secret agreement signed on October 19, 2010 of strategic cooperation, Venezuela has allowed Iran to commence construction of a missile base on Venezuelan soil. The base, which will be located on the northernmost peninsula de Paraguana, 120 kilometers from the Colombian border, has recently been visited by a group of leading engineers from the Iranian Revolutionary Guard-owned construction company Khatam al-Anbia, is unofficially designed "to help develop an infrastructure to protect against air attack. Also planned is the construction of a command and control station, residential areas, watchtowers, and bunkers, in which warheads, missile fuel and other items can be stored. In cooperation with its Venezuelan partners, Iran also intends to build missile silos at a depth of about 61 ft." The project appears to be funded by Iran: "Information gathered by Die Welt also suggests that on their visit to
Venezuela, members of the Iranian delegation carried cash in their
luggage for the project’s initial funding. Western security circles
suspect that this involved tens of millions of dollars siphoned off from
Iran’s burgeoning oil profits." But most importantly is the discovery that while presumably defensive, Venezuela has told Iran, that it will be granted use of the base when completed: "According to the secret agreement between the two countries, Venezuela
pledged to Iran that it will be able to strike its enemies from the
joint missile base.
Iran is attempting to boost its strategic threat to
the U.S., similar to the Soviet strategy in Cuba during the 1960s." And while skeptics may say that the base located about 2,400 miles from DC has no chance in striking the US capitol, the reality is that the Iranian long-range ballistic missiles Shahab 5 and 6, are rumored to be a three-stage system, which has a range of anywhere between 3,000 and 10,000 miles. So with missile base supplies most likely to come by sea (Venezuela is a few hundred miles away from Cuba), is a recreation of the 1961 Cuban missile crisis the next big political diversion?

Location of the base per Die Welt:

Which then begs the question: is America trying to antagonize Iran and to accelerate this "Cuban" denouement? According to the latest Naval update, not only are there now two aircraft carriers situated at the Straits of Hormuz, but a third one, CVN 77 G.H.W. Bush, is under way on a deployment to the 5th and 6th fleet AORs.

These developments come at a bad time for Ahmedinejad, whose power appears to be slipping following the deterioration of his relations with the religious leader Khamenei. Following a series of bizzare cabinet layoffs and forced transitions, none of which were to the liking of Iran's religious head, the president appointed himself the as country's oil minister, which yesterday was denounced by Iran's constitutional watchdog as illegal: a move that will put the country even more on edge as it likely now faces a crisis of confidence in its current rulers.

From Al Jazeera:

Iran's constitutional watchdog has deemed illegal Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's decision to take over the role of oil minister, after Iran's president removed the previous minister along with two others earlier in the week.

Iran's president was said to have assumed the role earlier this week as part of a government shakeup that reduced the number of ministries from 21 to 17.

The move put him in direct control of the government unit responsible for the extraction and export of the world's fifth largest oil and gas reserves.

It also meant Ahmadinejad would represent Iran at the next OPEC meeting, set for June 8 in Vienna.

According to Iranian law, a president has three months after removing a minister to introduce a new candidate to parliament.

During that period he can act as caretaker of the ministry or appoint someone else to do so.

And a move that is sure to tip the scales to an outright confrontation even more, is the just announced by Al Arabiya arrest of 30 suspected US spies: a move which will certainly lead to executions, and the complete collapse of any diplomatic ties between the two countries.

Iran has arrested 30 people it said were spying for the United States.

“Due to the massive intelligence and counter-intelligence work by Iranian agents, a complex espionage and sabotage network linked to America’s spy organization was uncovered and dismantled,” an intelligence ministry statement read out Saturday on the television said.

“Elite agents of the intelligence ministry in their confrontation with the CIA (Central Intelligence Agency) elements were able to arrest 30 America-linked spies through numerous intelligence and counter-intelligence operations,” it added.

According to Iran’s semi-official Fars news agency, the suspects had passed information to US officials at embassies and consulates in third countries, including Malaysia, Turkey and the United Arab Emirates.

It said Iran had identified 42 US intelligence officers in such countries, saying: “They engage in collection of information regarding Iran’s nuclear, aerospace defense and bio-technology fields,” among other areas.

Spying in Iran usually carries the death penalty, often implemented without a full trial.

The announcement of the arrests comes two days after US President Barack Obama made a speech on the Middle East, reiterating Washington’s view that Tehran sponsors terrorism and is developing nuclear weapons, charges that Iran vehemently denies.

Topping it all is the fact that just yesterday Obama had a meeting with Israel PM Netanyahu (full transcript here) which sought to mitigate the previous announcement by the administration that Israel should get back to its 1967 borders, and which merely led to yet another failure for returning to peace talks, after Palestinians described fresh talks as pointless following Israel's dismissal of Barack Obama's call for a return to prewar frontiers.

Once again, just like in 2010, the geopolitical concern of the "Iranian Question" continues to be the fuse on the timebomb for the inevitable military conflict which, as Zero Hedge predicted in early 2010, is the only possible outcome to the current global stagflationary wave. At this point it is almost certain that a war will break out. The only question is when, in what format, and just which countries will participate in the conflict. 

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mt paul's picture

freakin surreal ...

 

like the pages of a cheap thriller ....

paperback bytches

Sudden Debt's picture

Yeah, being 007 is cool untill it isn't.

 

caconhma's picture

People, get real.

Obama and his family have long CIA connections. He is "a company man" and a provocateur and a liar.

Yes, now-day, the primary America business is an endless array of wars. Just look at Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Yemen, Somalia, etc., Remember that ruling banksters cannot run legit  & real businesses and/or intelligently conduct a war.

All these wars are financed by a runaway printing  of US$. America enemies are not very bright and are not yet organized but there are so many of them.

Oh regional Indian's picture

I think America will have a binary transition, not a gradual one like many people think.
The things/processes/procedures/roles and responsibilities have all been "enacted' vial Presidential Executive Orders.
The naked emperor will be called out all of a sudden, it's called collapse for a reason.

And it looks like it is getting near.With the volcano eruption in Iceland....sure has an Exlocalypsy feeling to it all.
Dig here to see some of the "set-up" if you like:

http://aadivaahan.wordpress.com/2011/05/20/hey-america/

ORI

Caviar Emptor's picture

You could be right about that. Global pro-US feelings are ebbing

jeff montanye's picture

i'm going to go with global pro-us feelings have been ebbing since 1946 or so.  and not for no reason.

but to the present case:  how provocative of the third world to arm itself against the attacks of the first.

nah's picture

libya at least wanted to pretend itself a westernized ally

.

israel gets a free pass... and the globalists arent fooling anyone with 2/3 of a real opinion... this whole thing is a pain in the ass look war by itself is just war

.

if china wants to get up in our ass with japan melting down to put asia on the map really wtf are we going to do... piss off more people with lazers... fucking libya you have got to be kidding me like, what are we doing did they attack us... israel attacked turkey and they piss and moan their way out of it...

.

this shit is so retarded... any republican that is pro war at this point is a mindless biotch

snowball777's picture

any republican that is pro war is, at the very least, insincere about their desire for smaller, cheaper government.

 

tickhound's picture

Where the hell you been, snowball... We've been in need of some "rational" progressive thought.

Cheers

snowball777's picture

Howdy! I've been doing manual labor in prep for moving the fam out to the incrementally-Wine Country sticks of Marin mostly. Cathartic...to do self-anthropology in the dusty boxes.

tickhound's picture

A beautiful place to purge... You be sure to dodge that fault line. 

Oh regional Indian's picture

Ahhha! Beautiful. San Rafael adn Fairfax, it's where the tin-foil hat was jammed on my head by a few folks I'm always grateful to!

Good move snowball. It's definitely a sanctuary in the Bay Area.

ORI

snowball777's picture

I figure they're unlikely to riot early when TSHTF as they'll be too busy gardening and making bruschetta.

Oh regional Indian's picture

The good earth at farifax and The Open Secret bookstore in San rafael (D Street). Must cvisits.

Ask them about a tall Indian guy who hung out there a lot and got an education for the price of a few thousand cups of Chai.

;-)

ORI (aka Vivek)

RockyRacoon's picture

I must be way behind on my conspiracies.  How is that Obama/CIA family connection thingy again.

Some links to like thinking would be appreciated.   Boy, I feel really stupid not knowing this.

snowball777's picture

He's not American, born in Kenya, Mooslim, and he wants to eat your babies!

No, he's a CIA plant there to insure we stay in Afghanistan!

I hear he can live on nothing but Top Ramen and WikiLeaks!

He can write the Lord's prayer on a pin and sing like Neil Sedaka!

minsky4ever's picture

Here's one link with a bunch of info.

US doesn't like it when other countries copy its behavior? Now pepole here can see what people living in Russia see when they look towards their southern borders.

End the illegal wars and stop threatening the rest of the world and maybe we'll have some people respecting us.

legal eagle's picture

The only like minded people are rednecks and retards.

ColonelCooper's picture

Being both a redneck and a retard, I don't get your point.  Perhaps you didn't actually have one.

snowball777's picture

From AQ to Fred Phelps, there's fun-duh-mentalism in their twisted heart of hearts; there is a strong link between dogmatic thinking and poor judgement (pardon the pun). Sane, rational folk generally lack the dedication it takes to inflict great harm on others...they get distracted by living well and taking care of their own.

And don't knock rednecks or retards.

Anonymouse's picture

From the  looks of it, I would say this is the location http://maps.google.com/?ie=UTF8&ll=11.997944,-70.233804&spn=0.008427,0.0....

There are several other similar squares nearby (within a couple of miles) that also have been blurred out.  I didn't know Google was cooperating with CIA?  Chavez?

On the other hand, Aruba wouldn't be too bad place to use as a staging ground.  It's only about 40mi NNE

Azannoth's picture

Is Venezuela and Iran run by brainless monkeys?!?(w8 don't answer that) USA will take them both out with in 1 go, they can simply paint a big bullz-eye on their foreheads

Rodent Freikorps's picture

They do not believe our CinC will take action. His record would seem to support that.

We'll have to wait and see, but his stroking of Chavez does not indicate Obama will do a damn thing.

oklaboy's picture

Well put, the Bamster wil just go play golf, he is no JFK, until Soros tells him to. Alot of people are gonna get killed because of his incompetance.

MrBoompi's picture

Aren't there other blogs for partisan hacks?

sun tzu's picture

Nope. Plenty of partisan hacks on both sides. 

Anyway, Obama won't do anything unless he can get UN approval. No way it will happen for Venezuela. Who knows if the story is even true

blunderdog's picture

You know, I'm now starting to think this isn't run-of-the-mill trollery.  Something always nagged at me about a few of them...

The majority of the posters here are non-partisan enough to be dangerous. 

Hypothesis: the handful of really hard-core partisans are SO loud and prolific, they are likely here solely to derail any useful (and thus potentially disruptive to the current order) discussion.

They're *not* just stupid partisan shills.  They're something far worse.

dark pools of soros's picture

instead of just JFK getting killed because of his competance

macholatte's picture

 

"We have no evidence to support this claim and therefore no reason to believe the assertions made in the article are credible," the department said in a statement.

In the wake of the questions raised by the report, Venezuelan Foreign Minister Nicolas Maduro described the allegations as an "extravagant lie."

 

U.S. knocks down report of Iran, Venezuela missile base

http://www.cnn.com/2011/WORLD/americas/05/21/venezuela.iran.missiles/index.html?section=cnn_latest

AnarchyInc's picture

So they've officially denied it...so it must be true.

minsky4ever's picture

Ahh, a Claude Cockburn fan.

Don't believe anything until the government denies it.

YHC-FTSE's picture

I'd go with that story instead. The Iranians rounding up another group of CIA mules is virtually no news at all. Par for the course. But Die Welt's stuff about missile bases in Venezuela is too fucking stupid to be true. Why would the Iranians need to base their missiles in Venezuela if they have rockets that have 10,000 mile range, as it says in the story? They can lob one from Tehran and hit New York and way beyond - that is, IF they have them. Duh.

 

Somebody overreached on this story. They forgot that America is a country where you can get lynched for wearing a "Give Peace a Chance" t-shirt, and it doesn't take much to rile up the fear factor of the average paranoid American. A juicy spy story or another "kidnapping" of American "tourists" wandering around the Iranian border would have done just fine to start another war. Maybe not even that. Seems to me that all you have to do is fart in the wrong direction to be labelled a terrorist or enemy of the state these days.

 

As for Hugo Chavez, well, just having a latin American name is usually good enough for most Americans to carpet bomb his country. Plus there's the oil, mineral wealth, and the pretty girls who can be starved to turn tricks for the visiting GIs. Same old story. If Chavez wasn't such an outspoken clown, and therefore an international celebrity of sorts, his country would be toast by now, but there's always a chance somebody will find an Al-queda (The toilet) secret base in Caracas tomorrow. Next front on the war on terror: S. America? 

eureka's picture

Would you like to see twentyfive new 911's?

Bringin It's picture

I don't want to see any more 911s.  But on to Mexico I think it is.

Rodent Freikorps's picture

Annexing it, or surrendering to it?

ColonelCooper's picture

Ironically, we are reaching point where that is going to be the only choice.

eureka's picture

Nah - too close to the Federatio-Homeland.

Tail Dogging The Wag's picture

Regarding the comments of President Blah Blah Blah and Bibi, I have no further comments.

In times of change you need new alternatives and new ideas.

Land in Panama is one of the most undervalued assets in 2011.

PROTECT YOUR CAPITAL. INVEST. SAVE. OWN. LAND.

http://www.thorssoncapital.com/land-portfolio.html

In the event of a sale of land from any of the Thorsson Capital properties to any Zero Hedge reader, the vendor (Thorsson Capital) hereby pledges a donation of 1% of the total sale to Zero Hedge, said donation is to be made within 30 working days of settlement.

Fish Gone Bad's picture

Anyone remember the Monroe Doctrine?  It was aimed at Europe, but in this case, I am sure the administration is willing to include pretty much everyone.

magpie's picture

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Venezuela_Crisis_of_1902%E2%80%931903

Settle for the original Gunboat diplomacy

oh looky, the Venezuelans have the BS as currency...

Non Passaran's picture

I thought it was about Latin (or South?) America.

hognutz's picture

I'm glad today is the end of the world. So all this bullsheet is really just academic....

Gully Foyle's picture

hognutz

Dude I took this as a sign of the end times.

 

"but a third one, CVN 77 G.H.W. Bush"

Oh regional Indian's picture

Gully, long time gone.

And good catch. 7/7.

June Seventh..... mark your calendars and my words... tipping date.
It feels like it's time for an echo from 7/7/2005.

Remember, the system will be taken through the wringer before the next olympics, which will be a (temporary) harbinger of whirled peas and the installation of a new way, shall we say?

Sure feels like a jolty day.

;-)

ORI

http://aadivaahan.wordpress.com/2011/05/20/hey-america/

BrosMacManus's picture

which is it 7/7 or June 7th? so i can get right on that...

 

Oh regional Indian's picture

aaargh! Sorry.
July 7th...
I got it right this time. Thanks.
So please, mark your calendars and my words, corrected.

7/7/11

Looks rather ominous just sitting there, doesn't it?

Sehven ti Sehven.

ORI

Bolweevil's picture

"A new way? What's this about a new way." Name that movie...