… by Gordon Duff, … with New Eastern Outlook, Moscow
– First published … October 24, 2014 –
CNN’s Christiane Amanpour and author Gareth Porter have both been “burned” over bizarre actions recently. Where there may have been some doubt, almost everyone “in the know” now is aware or at least “believes” both of these individuals work for Israeli intelligence.
Does this prove they are Israeli spies? Of course not, well “sort of.” OK, maybe it does mean yes, but in the grey world of spies and such, nothing is “black and white.”
Last week two minor events happened, both tied to Iran, both tied to the press and both with disturbing consequences. Two “assets,” or may we say “alleged assets” were “burned.”
An asset is an individual who works for an intelligence agency. Sometimes they are spies, but more often they simply “do the bidding” of the agency that controls them.
Each “asset” has a handler, someone near them that controls what they do, and “assets” are usually people who appear to be close to one cause but serve another, often because they are paid or blackmailed.
The term “burn” means something else. An asset, let’s say Christiane Amanpour, supposedly the Mideast expert and “powerhouse” behind CNN, can be of value for decades. Amanpour, if she is an asset, has certainly been this and more – able to influence events.
Gareth Porter at Tehran’s New Horizon Conference
This is what happened. There was a conference in Iran last week called New Horizon. Gareth Porter, a minor author with a background as full of holes as the floorboards of a North Korean taxi, attended a conference in Tehran that he helped organize.
The original conference in Tehran was to be about the 1960s and the “free thinking movement” in the US, protest music, political movements and how Americans now look on that period as Hunter Thompson has called it, “a high water mark” in American culture.
I was an organizer and had prepared a guest list of artists, authors, political figures from the time and a number of my friends from VT, Editors Jim Dean, Leo Wanta, Mike Harris, Kevin Barrett, Jim Fetzer and others.
Frankly, the “VT crowd” would have carried it, as these are largely “leftovers” from the 1960’s who are still active today and who are “hard wired” to the geopolitics of the Mid East as well.
However, Porter had penned a book seemingly favorable to Iran – one published at a semi-vanity press – just the kind of thing Iran looks for. They turned over the conference to Porter who choose whom he wanted to come — a list that now included at least 3 Mossad assets and excluded anyone with intelligence training who would have caught what he was doing.
While at the meeting, he presented his book and, almost immediately, drafted a press release calling other conference attendees “anti-Semites,” “Holocaust deniers” and “haters.” Of course, these were people he invited. As American humorist Jim W. Dean so often says, “You just can’t make things like this up.”
Porter’s accusations were repeated around the world, particularly in the Israeli press and in the US and Britain. Iran was humiliated. They had been warned this would happen, mind you. Porter had been put on a “person of interest” list, suspected of having infiltrated the anti-war movement following Vietnam and of having affiliations in groups that were believed to be intelligence agency fronts.
Like any “con,” it takes someone looking for something “too good to be true” to be taken in, and Iran is infamous for failing to carefully check on those it gathers unto its bosom.
Then the other shoe dropped. I love that phrase, as it so aptly describes a multi-faceted intelligence operation. Those who thought the fallout over Porter’s deception was a disaster didn’t expect what was to come from Christiane Amanpour.
CNN’s Translation crisis
Amanpour is in Tehran continually, a favorite of Iran though her articles and blog postings are invariably hostile to Iranian policies. Christiane “Amanpour” is actually Christiane Rubin, a former Iranian and now dual US/Israeli citizen, the wife of a suspected Israeli intelligence asset.
This is what she did; during an interview with President Rouhani — one that ran simultaneous to the Gareth Porter fiasco which was filling the press with “Iran’s ‘hatefest’” — Amanpour published a hugely altered version of Rouhani’s responses, characterizing him as unstable, warlike and an anti-Semite.
From the Iranian response as published by Fars News Agency:
“TEHRAN (FNA) – American news channel CNN fabricated the remarks made by Iranian President Hassan Rouhani in response to the network’s question about the Holocaust.
The CNN aired its interview with Rouhani on Tuesday but the news channel added to or changed parts of his remarks when Christiane Amanpour asked him about the Holocaust.
Here is the exact transcript of the Farsi text according to the CNN broadcast:
من قبلا گفتم که من تاریخ دان نیستم و ابعاد حوادث تاریخی را تاریخ دانان باید تبین کنند، بیان کنند و توضیخ بدهند. اما به طور کلی هرگونه جنایتی که در تاریخ علیه بشریت اتفاق افتاده باشد و از جمله جنایتی که نازی ها انجام دادند چه در مورد یهودیان و چه در مورد غیر یهودیان از نظر ما کاملا محکوم است همانطور که امروز هم اگر جنایتی انجام شود علیه هر ملتی یا هر دینی یا هر قومیتی یا هر اعتقادی، ما آن جنایت و نسل کشی را محکوم می کنیم بنابراین کار نازی ها محکوم است, ابعادی که شما می گویید به عهده مورخین و محققین است که آن ابعاد را روشن کنند. من محقق تاریخی نیستم.
Here is the exact English translation of President Rouhani’s remarks:
Rouhani’s: “I have said before that I am not a historian and historians should specify, state and explain the aspects of historical events, but generally we fully condemn any kind of crime committed against humanity throughout the history, including the crime committed by the Nazis both against the Jews and non-Jews, the same way that if today any crime is committed against any nation or any religion or any people or any belief, we condemn that crime and genocide. Therefore, what the Nazis did is condemned, (but) the aspects that you talk about, clarification of these aspects is a duty of the historians and researchers, I am not a history scholar.”
And here is what the CNN translation says:
CNN Question: “One of the things your predecessor (President Ahmadinejad) used to do from this very platform was deny(ing) the holocaust and pretend(ing) it was a myth, I want to know you, your position on the holocaust, do you accept what it was, and what was it?”
CNN’s Translation: “I’ve said before that I am not a historian and then, when it comes to speaking of the dimensions of the Holocaust, it is the historians that should reflect on it. But in general I can tell you that any crime that happens in history against humanity, including the crime that Nazis committed towards the Jews as well as non-Jews is reprehensible and condemnable. Whatever criminality they committed against the Jews, we condemn, the taking of human life is contemptible, it makes no difference whether that life is Jewish life, Christian or Muslim, for us it is the same, but taking the human life is something our religion rejects but this doesn’t mean that on the other hand you can say Nazis committed crime against a group now therefore, they must usurp the land of another group and occupy it. This too is an act that should be condemned. There should be an even-handed discussion”.
FNA NOTE: The Red parts have been added or completely altered. The Yellow parts are the product of conceptual, and not precise, translation.
Yet, the underlined parts are the worst parts of the fabrications which totally change what President Rouhani has said.”
What Fars failed to report, however, is that Amanpour, who has interviewed President Rouhani many times, actually conducted the interview in Farsi, personally oversaw the mistranslation and published the fabricated story under her personal byline, not CNNs.
What Fars also failed to note was that Amanpour’s actions, which required great daring and audacity, were timed to carefully coincide with the media backlash provoked by an almost identical action by Gareth Porter.
One might ask, why would Israel, and this is assuming that both Porter and Amanpour are Israeli intelligence assets, something a cursory examination of their background supports, choose this time to “burn” or expose both?
Is it because the West is ready to drop sanctions on Iran tied to a nuclear settlement Israel is trying to sabotage?
The ironic part of this, of course, is that Porter’s book supposedly cites Israeli crimes involved in having Iran accused of nuclear weapons development in the first place.
To simplify it more, Porter may well have been sent to Tehran to scuttle the Iran nuclear settlement that Iranians believed his book was written to defend.
Then again, Israel is facing major fallout after their genocidal attacks on Gaza. A politically meaningless, but greatly symbolic vote in the UK parliament recently — representing the first condemnation of Israel from Britain — has Tel Aviv in shock.
Then again, it is largely dual citizens — Ukrainian-Israeli oligarchs who have led the genocide against the Russian-speaking areas of the Ukraine — a genocide that has met unexpectedly stiff resistance.
Would Amanpour and the “lesser” Porter be tossed onto the “credibility scrapheap” over downturns of this kind?
Gordon Duff is a Vietnam War Marine combat veteran who has worked on veterans and POW issues for decades and consulted with governments challenged by security issues; and is a senior editor and chairman of the board of VT, especially for the online magazine “New Eastern Outlook”.
Editing: Jim W. Dean
Gordon Duff posted articles on VT from 2008 to 2022. He is a Marine combat veteran of the Vietnam War. A disabled veteran, he worked on veterans and POW issues for decades.
Gordon is an accredited diplomat and is generally accepted as one of the top global intelligence specialists. He manages the world’s largest private intelligence organization and regularly consults with governments challenged by security issues.
Duff has traveled extensively, is published around the world, and is a regular guest on TV and radio in more than “several” countries. He is also a trained chef, wine enthusiast, avid motorcyclist, and gunsmith specializing in historical weapons and restoration. Business experience and interests are in energy and defense technology.