Farewell. The Flying Pig Has Left The Building.

Steve Hynd, August 16, 2012

After four years on the Typepad site, eight years total blogging, Newshoggers is closing it's doors today. We've been coasting the last year or so, with many of us moving on to bigger projects (Hey, Eric!) or simply running out of blogging enthusiasm, and it's time to give the old flying pig a rest.

We've done okay over those eight years, although never being quite PC enough to gain wider acceptance from the partisan "party right or wrong" crowds. We like to think we moved political conversations a little, on the ever-present wish to rush to war with Iran, on the need for a real Left that isn't licking corporatist Dem boots every cycle, on America's foreign misadventures in Afghanistan and Iraq. We like to think we made a small difference while writing under that flying pig banner. We did pretty good for a bunch with no ties to big-party apparatuses or think tanks.

Those eight years of blogging will still exist. Because we're ending this typepad account, we've been archiving the typepad blog here. And the original blogger archive is still here. There will still be new content from the old 'hoggers crew too. Ron writes for The Moderate Voice, I post at The Agonist and Eric Martin's lucid foreign policy thoughts can be read at Democracy Arsenal.

I'd like to thank all our regular commenters, readers and the other bloggers who regularly linked to our posts over the years to agree or disagree. You all made writing for 'hoggers an amazingly fun and stimulating experience.

Thank you very much.

Note: This is an archive copy of Newshoggers. Most of the pictures are gone but the words are all here. There may be some occasional new content, John may do some posts and Ron will cross post some of his contributions to The Moderate Voice so check back.


Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Iran talks: hope or "red line" time?

By Steve Hynd

After Obama and Netanyahu's meeting, it appears there'll be no unilateral Israeli attack on Iran just yet. And today there's news that there's to be a new round of negotiations between the P5+1 and Iran, plus Iran is looking to grant limited access for IAEA inspectors to the Parchin military base. All good, Right?

No, Iran isn't exactly out from under the threat of preventative war yet.

The Guardian reveals why the talks will likely fail, before they've even begun. Sarkozy's taking the hard line.

French officials argued that in order to satisfy Israel that all was being done to resolve the nuclear crisis by peaceful means, the international response would have to make it absolutely clear that the talks would have to end with the "full implementation" of UN security council resolutions calling for the suspension of uranium enrichment. That language was spelt out in Ashton's latest letter.

In my humble opinion, there's no way Iran will agree to such a thing. It would be a domestic political disaster as well as a crippling submission in the eyes of the world. So if France sticks to its demand and the rest of the P5+1 agree, then the talks will fail (probably with Iran being blamed for the failure, as ever).

After that? Well, Michael Tomasky is spot-on about Obama's rhetoric at AIPAC probably not being the most auspicious.

the important part of the speech, the sentences that historians might be ruing and Americans regretting 15 years from now, was this: �Iran�s leaders should understand that I do not have a policy of containment; I have a policy to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon. And as I have made clear time and again during the course of my presidency, I will not hesitate to use force when it is necessary to defend the United States and its interests.�

Here�s why this is important. Ironclad vows like this tend to lock a nation into a position from which it cannot later retreat. If you were already thinking �Truman Doctrine,� give yourself a point.

When Obama speaks today about a "window of opportunity' for Iran, he includes implicitly the notion that the window will close at some stage, and over the last two days he's made it impossible to walk that notion back. If these new talks fail, he's going to be under immense pressure to say Iran's "last chance" has finally come and gone, whether or not there's an actual nuclear weapon "red line" in evidence.


  1. I really don't think there will be an attack on Iran. Both the US and Israeli military oppose it. The Israeli people are more concerned about blowback from an attack than they are a nuclear Iran. Obama knows an attack would crash the world economy.

  2. You almost wish they, our know it all elites, would order a go and stop the bloody nonsense, pontification and general load of merde they circulate to our outstanding media stenographers as accurate news. If it truly would crash the world economy the silver lining could be that our lords and masters may figuratively be paraded through the streets of our capitals in tumbrils and accepted by common citizens for the blowhard blood lust freaks they are.