Former Assistant Secretary of the Treasury and National Review Contributing Editor Paul Craig Roberts writes in his latest Counterpunch column—yes, that Counterpunch—that the Bush administration will likely stage "false-flag" terror operations to justify an attack on Iran:
Bush has put in place all the necessary measures for dictatorship in the form of "executive orders" that are triggered whenever Bush declares a national emergency. Recent statements by Homeland Security Chief Michael Chertoff, former Republican senator Rick Santorum and others suggest that Americans might expect a series of staged, or false flag, "terrorist" events in the near future.
If the Bush administration wants to continue its wars in the Middle East and to entrench the "unitary executive" at home, it will have to conduct some false flag operations that will both frighten and anger the American people and make them accept Bush's declaration of "national emergency" and the return of the draft. Alternatively, the administration could simply allow any real terrorist plot to proceed without hindrance.
A series of staged or permitted attacks would be spun by the captive media as a vindication of the neoconsevatives' (sic) Islamophobic policy, the intention of which is to destroy all Middle Eastern governments that are not American puppet states. Success would give the US control over oil, but the main purpose is to eliminate any resistance to Israel's complete absorption of Palestine into Greater Israel.
Roberts, who also contributes to VDare and Antiwar.com—and, once upon a time, contributed to this magazine—is no stranger to wacky false-flag theories. In a 2006 Counterpunch article, he showed considerable interest in the 9/11 conspiracy theories, wondering if the Oneonta Truth Squad was on to something after all:
Other readers write that 9/11 shields Bush from accountability, They challenge me to explain why three World Trade Center buildings on one day collapsed into their own footprints at free fall speed, an event outside the laws of physics except under conditions of controlled demolition. They insist that there is no stopping war and a police state as long as the government's story on 9/11 remains unchallenged.
They could be right.
Except that they are wrong.