Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Beware Misleading Articles

An exercise in perception -
Iran's navy chief warned Wednesday that his country can easily close the strategic Strait of Hormuz at the mouth of the Persian Gulf, the passageway through which a sixth of the world's oil flows.

It was the second such warning in two days. On Tuesday, Vice President Mohamed Reza Rahimi threatened to close the strait, cutting off oil exports, if the West imposes sanctions on Iran's oil shipments.

In response, the Bahrain-based U.S. 5th Fleet's spokeswoman warned that any disruption "will not be tolerated." The spokeswoman, Lt. Rebecca Rebarich, said the U.S. Navy is "always ready to counter malevolent actions to ensure freedom of navigation."
The Real Effect
Let's examine this shall we?

For starters, notice how the article and it's content is summarized for you? This is a convenient way of framing your comprehension of the facts being presented to you. (i.e. - Iran, the aggressor against the U.S.) This is designed to help you interpret the latter content in a different manner than what is actually being presented. (i.e. - U.S., the aggressor against Iran)

But before we examine the front half of the article, let's examine the U.S. position presented
Western nations are growing increasingly impatient with Iran over its nuclear program. The U.S. and its allies have accused Iran of using its civilian nuclear program as a cover to develop nuclear weapons.
Note the word "accused". In the past, Iraq was accused of getting uranium yellowcake from Nigeria. This is the assessment that helped support the war which ultimately ended up being bogus. (Read as fraudulent) In this instance, if there was material proof that such a program was active, it would be waved from coast to coast at this point. It either doesn't exist or isn't strong enough to warrant a war.

Given the lack of evidence thus far, how has the U.S. responded?
The U.S. Congress has passed a bill banning dealings with the Iran Central Bank, and President Barack Obama has said he will sign it despite his misgivings.
The bill could impose penalties on foreign firms that do business with Iran's central bank. European and Asian nations import Iranian oil and use its central bank for the transactions
Now, here is the critical portion of the article that gives us the proper context.
Iran has adopted an aggressive military posture in recent months in response to increasing threats from the U.S. and Israel that they may take military action to stop Iran's nuclear program.
Iran is being existentially threatened, therefore they are naturally responding with threats of their own.
Iran's navy chief warned...
More then likely the use of the word "warned" is to create the perception that there is an outright naked threat on behalf the Iranian nation. The use of this word could be called inflammatory because the proceeding does not follow the inclusion of that word. (At least in the manner that it is being presented.)
...that his country can easily close the strategic Strait of Hormuz at the mouth of the Persian Gulf...
Saying something is possible is not tantamount to saying it is probable let alone a declaration of intent. In this instance, you have a sovereign country, Iran, that is already being targeted by destabilization efforts, sanctions, threats of war and a possible embargo on a necessary energy source (refined gas) and support for the nation. In this manner, Iran is acting consistently with a nation attempting to protect their "national interests".

In short, be careful what you read and how.

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