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Nov-03-2012 15:18printcomments

Is Sen. Whitehouse Really that Uninformed?

It is sad when policy makers live by the light of illusion.

Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse of Rhode Island. <br>Photo courtesy: Business Insider
Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse of Rhode Island.
Photo courtesy: Business Insider

(PROVIDENCE, RI) - On Thursday Carole and I went to Providence for the taping of the WJAR debate for candidates for RI’s 2nd congressional district. It was broadcast Friday on WJAR in RI. Our friend Abel Collins, the independent candidate, gave a fine closing statement.

Then we stayed to watch the debate for US Senate candidates Barry Hinckley and incumbent Sheldon Whitehouse, It airs today (Saturday, Nov.3) at 7:30 pm on WJAR, Ch. 10. (No questions on foreign policy were asked in either debate. But I already know the disastrous positions of the two incumbents, Rep. Langevin and Sen. Whitehouse.)

As we left the building, Whitehouse was outside greeting people. We had a two-minute conversation:

“Hi Rod. Did you come to Providence especially for this? How’s your house? Do you have electricity?”

No we don’t have electricity. But that’s a minor inconvenience. What really bothers me is your continuing support of Israel. Why are we causing so much suffering for the Palestinians and Iranians?

“They’re jihadists.”

I asked him if he knew when Iran last attacked another country. He had no idea. So I told him it was in 1738.

“What about the attack on Iraq?”

I pointed out that actually Iraq attacked Iran. (I failed to remind him of the U.S. complicity in this and our support for Saddam Hussein.)

I also pointed out that Iran has no nuclear weapons, while Israel has hundreds.

“We’ll just have to agree to disagree. Have a nice day.”

The above is not a verbatim transcript. It’s a paraphrasing of my recollections. I don’t know if Sheldon really believes all the lies he parrots. But on Tuesday I’m afraid he’ll be re-elected and will continue doing whatever Netanyahu and AIPAC tell him to do. I’m sending him a copy of my recent letter:


The Narragansett Times, 2012 October 10

Israel has a secretive nuclear program of its own

When Benjamin Netanyahu or his obedient followers Barack Obama and Mitt Romney talk of a potential attack by Iran, why doesn’t the media remind us who has actually attacked whom?  

The last time Iran attacked another nation was nearly three centuries ago.  (In 1738 Nader Shah invaded India.)

On the other hand since World War II, the U.S. and Israel have bombed, invaded or otherwise attacked dozens of countries killing hundreds of thousands of people – perhaps a million.  Iran itself has often been the target.

In 1953 the CIA overthrew Iran’s democratically-elected government and made Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi dictator with the brutal organization SAVAK to eliminate his opponents.  In 1958 an American ship “accidentally” shot down an Iranian airliner killing all 230 adults and 60 children on board.  In the 1980s President Reagan attacked Iran by proxy, supporting Saddam Hussein in his war against Iran.  

Israel has bombed or invaded Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, Syria and of course Palestine itself.

Today the U.S. and Israel are apparently behind the sabotage of Iran’s nuclear facilities and murders of its nuclear scientists and engineers.  Much of this is actually carried out by the MEK (the People’s Mujahedin), designated a “foreign terrorist organization” by the U.S.   The U.S. recently  lifted the “terrorist” designation so that we can legally work with the MEK.

The U.S. has imposed crushing sanctions on the people of Iran, much as we did in the 1990s on the people of Iraq – another population which had done nothing to us.

Iran’s nuclear program is said to be a threat to Israel and the U.S.  Ironically, Iran began its program for nuclear energy in 1957 with the U.S. supplying nuclear material.  At that time Iran was ruled by our friend, dictator Reza Pahlavi. 

After Reza Pahlavi was overthrown in 1979, Iran’s religious leaders continued the nuclear-energy program.  But they have repeatedly renounced nuclear weapons, calling for a nuclear-free zone in the Middle East.  And as a party to the NPT (nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty), Iran has accepted numerous inspections of its nuclear facilities.

On the other hand, Israel has a secretive nuclear program. It refuses to sign the NPT and will not allow international inspections of its nuclear facilities. 

Why is the U.S. media silent on all this?


Rod Driver studied engineering and mathematics at the University of Minnesota, receiving a Ph.D. in mathematics in 1960. He worked at Sandia Laboratories in Albuquerque for six years before taking a teaching position at the University of Rhode Island for 30 years. Rod says he became a 'peacenik' in 1951 (thanks to a few weeks on Pariss Island). He became particularly active in opposition to U.S. wars in Indochina and U.S. involvement in overthrowing governments and supporting dictators in Latin America and Iran. As the Vietnam war was winding down Rod began paying attention to the abuse of Palestinians - enabled with U.S. weapons and dollars, which has never stopped. Rod is the founder and president of the non-profit Justice First Foundation.

In Rhode Island Rod was an elected delegate to the state constitutional convention of 1986, Then he was elected a state representative for 10 years. At this time he is not in office. You can write to Rod Driver at this address:


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Marc Lieberman, Esquire February 1, 2017 5:40 pm (Pacific time)

What a highly educated fool ! You sound like a stooge for Iran. If you cannot discern the difference between a homicidal theocracy which has pledged to wipe Israel from the face of the earth and a free, open, democratic society like ours or Israel, you should not demonstrate your ignorance and stupidity on an editorial page.

Anonymous November 3, 2012 6:13 pm (Pacific time)

we will have to agree to disagree...dear lord, he disagrees with facts...welcome to 99% of our politicians thought process...THis is why I supported Ron Paul...and Gary Johnson at least has half a clue. Too bad you did not remind him that the west is funding and arming alCIAda to kill syrians, including Christians syrians, while telling us ewe have to give up our liberties because of alCIAda...I tell ya, they could panit a building pitch black, and tell people its white and most would believe it.

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Sean Flynn was a photojournalist in Vietnam, taken captive in 1970 in Cambodia and never seen again.