And the Winner is…


Khomeini sml.jpg
According to a survey published on Monday by the BBC World Service, Iran is viewed as the country with the most-negative influence in the world. It’s not hard to see why.
Iran’s nuclear program is the subject of much controversy and anxiety in the United States and Europe. Whether or not Tehran is in fact pursuing a peaceful nuclear energy program, its development of nuclear technology poses an immense, if latent, strategic threat to its neighbors and to the regional balance of power. Such fears are only encouraged by Iran’s record of repeated noncompliance with the IAEA–its de-designation of two inspectors last year is only one troubling example of many. At best, Iran has been uncooperative when it comes to questions about its nuclear program. At worst, it could be accused of deliberately misleading the international community.
Issues with Iran’s nuclear program are magnified by its blatant desire to enhance its missile capabilities. Last year, the New York Times reported that Iran had obtained a cache of advanced missiles from North Korea. Based on a Russian design, they put the capitals of Western Europe as well as Moscow within striking distance. When coupled with Iran’s frequently belligerent attitude towards the West, Iranian nuclear aspirations and its growing arsenal are not undue causes for worry. Not to mention its transparent sponsorship of Hizbollah, Hamas, and groups in Syria and Iraq.
The BBC’s annual report surveys the views of citizens of 27 countries around the globe. While Iran took the gold, North Korea and Pakistan got silver and bronze. And the runner up?
This is a good starting point for many in “the West” who want to get a sense of how the rest of the world feels about Israel–and American support for it. Given the perceptions that Americans hold about Iran, North Korea, and Pakistan, Israel’s position at number four should give a rough indication of how it is seen by much of the rest of the world. Whether that view is accurate or not, we should at least have a sense of it before we begin to talk about one of our core allies.
— Jordan D’Amato


9 comments on “And the Winner is…

  1. Kathleen says:

    “According to a survey published on Monday by the BBC World Service, Iran is viewed as the country with the most-negative influence in the world. It’s not hard to see why.”
    this is not surprising. The same warmongers that lied this nation into an invasion of Iraq based on a “pack of lies” Started repeating unsubstantiated claims about Iran soon after the invasion of Iraq. Cheny on Tim Russerts, Wolofowitz, Reuel Marc Gerecht on the Diane Rehm show, John Bolton on Talk of the Nation, Micheal Ledeen at National Review, Bush, Bill Kristol, David “axis of evil” Frum, Tom Friedman all started beating the bad bad bad Iran mantras. “Iran wants to wipe Israel off the map” (debunked by Prof Cole was and is repeated all over the place. “Iran’s nuclear weapons plan” as if it is all ready in existence repeated all over the place. David Gregory, Stephanpoulous, Bob Schifer, Diane Rehm Neil Conan, Scott Simon no one no one challenges these claims when they are often repeated. Hell I have heard NPR’s Fresh Air host and MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow not only allow guest to repeat these unsubstantiated claims I have heard both repeat these claims themselves. Numerous times.
    No wonder Iran makes the top of the list. 8 years of these bad bad bad Iran claims to be repeated with no challenges by our roll over MSM and talking heads…no surprise.
    How does that go about repeating lies enough times


  2. PissedOffAmerican says:

    (Who knows how many posts are between here and there, or even how long ago I posted it? Will this comment appear ten minutes from now, or two days from now? This surely qualifies as the longest spanking in the history of mankind.)
    ……I note the narrative as being the premier factor driving the status quo between Israel and the Palestininans.
    Obviously, I’m not the only one that realizes that simple fact….
    J Street’s Wrong Turn in the War of Narratives
    Ira Chernus, Truthout:
    “J Street, the most prominent American pro-Israel, pro-peace group, has packed its 2011 national conference with sessions on nearly every aspect of the Israel-Palestine conflict, US Mideast policy and American Jewish attitudes toward Israel. Conspicuously missing, though, is the most important topic of all: he narrative of Israel as a brave but insecure little nation, constantly forced to fight for survival. As long as that narrative frames American public conversation about Israel, nothing J Street or anyone else does to change US policy will make much difference.”


  3. Carroll says:

    ‘BBC spots sharp climb in negative view of Israel in the U.S.’
    Like 9 Retweet 3
    by Philip Weiss7 March 2011
    BBC World Service poll, out today. Page 19:
    Imagine how much higher even, the majority US view would be if our the media didn’t have a pro Israel slant.
    But the truth will always out as they say.
    Having lost Turkey and most probably Egypt I thought perhaps there would be some signs of sanity in Israel. But since they floated the idea this week of asking the US for an extra 20 billion for ‘security’ since the Egyptian revolt I guess not.
    LOL….if congress gives it to them we can have our own Egypt here…or our own Libya.


  4. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Well, Paul, Obama DOES have some leverage, but he refuses to use it. The narrative is his leverage, and it is a tool he can use to counter the strong pro-Israel activism within his own party. The “marketing” value of Tristan Anderson and Emily Henochowicz, in selling a departure from the status quo, is impressive, because Americans do not take kindly to having their citizens targeted abroad. The TRUTH is Obama’s leverage, and if he was willing to circumvent his own people, such as Clinton and these groveling worms like Hoyer, Reid, etc, and present the TRUTH to the American people, he could go far in opening the eyes of the public, and swaying public opinion away from the status quo.
    The current state of our economy, and the insanity of pissing away our money on a country that shoots American citizens, steals and sells our private sector technology and our advanced military technology is also a message that would resonate outside the beltway.
    Obama has leverage, he just won’t use it. He is the epitomy of what one can describe as a “political coward”. He ALWAYS has his back to the wind, taking the path of least resistance.
    (Isn’t this fun, trying to interact, when days may pass between responses to each other’s thoughts and comments. Whoopee.)


  5. DonS says:

    Bradley Manning.
    “Manning now faces charges that include the potential of capital punishment. He was charged with 22 additional counts for his alleged role in a massive leak of classified information to WikiLeaks, including a charge of


  6. JohnH says:

    Yes, Iran is the winner. India’s National Security Adviser Shiv Shankar Menon, a key policymaker of high reputation as a consummate diplomat, delivered Ahmadinejad a letter from Prime Minister Manmohan Singh:
    “New Delhi is for the establishment of comprehensive relations with Iran, including strategic ties … many of the predictions you [Ahmadinejad] had about the political and economic developments in the world have come to reality today and the world order is going under basic alterations [sic], which has necessitated ever-increasing relations between Iran and India … The relations between the Islamic Republic of Iran and the Republic of India are beyond the current political relations, having their roots in the cultures and the civilizations and the two nations and both countries have great potentials for improvement of bilateral, regional and international relations.”
    I guess Singh didn’t get the memo about Iran’s negative influence…


  7. Paul Norheim says:

    As for Israel, the sad fact is that only fools and propagandists would claim that the current Israeli government has a
    “positive influence” in the world. Even people who sincerely sympathize with Israel realize that Israel under
    Lieberman/Netanyahu has absolutely zero interest in something remotely resembling a fair settlement of the conflict with
    the Palestinians. And they hate and fear the outcome of the sudden awakening of the Arab street.
    So during the coming months, please spare us these posts at the TWN pushing for a negotiated agreement between the
    Israelis and the Palestinians, with America playing the role of the “unbiased” mediator. It’s a sad farce and a waste of
    time. It’s absolutely clear that the Israelis have not been willing to seriously invest in a settlement of this conflict for more
    than a decade – so why on earth should Netanyahu and Lieberman suddenly change their mind during a chaotic regional
    Arab revolution with an unpredictable outcome?
    And who would expect of Obama to risk his political capital on convincing Netanyahu/Lieberman during an election
    campaign? Forget it. He has no leverage, at least not until his second term.
    If Obama wants to do something truly meaningful in this context before winning (yes, he’ll probably win his second term),
    he should concentrate his efforts on helping Israel repair its friendship and strategic alliance with “the sole island of
    stability” in the region: Turkey. Yes, it requires swallowing some camels – an apology and a compensation payment for
    the flotilla killings. But Israel knows now, after Tahrir Square, that it needs Turkey more than Turkey needs Israel.
    And America and Europe certainly needs Turkey just as much as Turkey needs the West – both during the current revolts
    and revolutions in the Middle East, and in future negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians, as well as in dealing
    with Syria and Egypt and other actors in the region.
    Here is an article related to this issue:


  8. Richard says:

    I believe one the the great mistakes that the US and Europe is making is the laser focus on Iran’s nuclear ambitions. Whether a deliberate strategy or not by Iran, the emphasis on the nuclear issue is a smokescreen for Iran’s regional ambitions. Let’s understand that right now the US has about 50,000 military staff left in Iraq and the majority are there for training and related efforts. They are gone, very likely, by the end of the year. Iran is already taking advantage of the power vacuum in a divided Iraq and has so far successfully inserted itself so as to have some control over Iraq’s internal politics.
    Regardless of one’s opinion of the Arab revolts that are taking place or US and European support for the old regimes – the three which Iran is most interested are those in Yemen, Oman and Bahrain. These three border Saudi Arabia. Iran and Saudi Arabia make no secret about their dislike for each other.
    So, imagine the scenario: Iraq is subservient to Iran; Bahrain, with key US bases, goes under and also re-evaluates it’s relations with Iran; Oman and Yemen also modify their allegiances toward Iran. Perfect storm for the West. Iran is rapidly becoming the dominant power in the region, something it has been doing, off and on, for 3,000 years. There are 78 million people in Iran with the most powerful conventional military in the region – the real threat(I’m excluding Turkey because of the distance). But now there is no balance. The Saudi’s would need to re-evaluate their relationship with Iran and not to their benefit.
    So – should everyone keep on pushing the nuclear threat as the primary concern? I really don’t think so. And if anyone believes that the perfect storm can’t happen – well, it may be improbable,even highly improbable; but, those are the types of events that have the biggest impact and they must be taken into consideration so that planning for the improbable reduces the bad effects. Concentrating on the nuclear issue is not it.


  9. erichwwk says:

    Frequent readers may recognize that I rarely share the “official” US/UK view of Iran, particularly as it pertains to its nuclear program viz a viz that of the U.S.
    In googling Globespan to ascertain their methodology, wikepedia leads me to this:
    “BBC ‘spends


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