Guardian removes claim about Iran’s nuclear “weapons” program from ‘the pages of time’

If you go to the Guardian’s business page you’ll see a report by Rupert Neate about a British company which allegedly earned millions of pounds selling goods to Iran, “including to a state-owned firm that supplies the regime’s nuclear programme”

The title of the report, as it now appears, is “Glencore traded with Iranian supplier to nuclear programme”.


However, the if you go back in time a few days (to a cached page), you can see the title they originally used: “Glencore traded with Iranian supplier to nuclear weapons’s programme”.  

Cached page, as it originally appeared

At some point after the story was published on April 21 the word “weapons” was deleted from title.

Whilst we’ll likely never know for sure what prompted the Guardian “correction” to the evidently counter-revolutionary suggestion that Iran is working on a nuclear weapons program, the paper’s history in denying the obvious about the regime’s nuclear ambitions provides some context.

For instance, there was Seumas Milne’s attempt, in a 2011 Comment is Free post, to obfuscate on the issue, which included an urgent plea for readers to prevent a “covert US-Israeli campaign against Tehran” from exploding into a global war.  He further argued that “a US-Israeli stealth war against Iran” would be “shocking” as “the case against Iran is so spectacularly flimsy.” He concluded thusly:

“There is in fact no reliable evidence that Iran is engaged in a nuclear weapons programme…. the evidence suggests Iran suspended any weapons programme in 2003 and has not reactivated it.”

In fact nothing could be further than the truth.  A Nov. 2011 IAEA Report included the following conclusions:

  • Iran has been conducting research and experiments geared to developing a nuclear weapons capability
  • Iran had carried out tests relevant to the development of a nuclear device.

Even a Guardian story (which included a pdf of the full IAEA report) characterized the IAEA findings as establishing that that “Iran appears to be on a structured path to building a nuclear weapon.”  Further, as recently as early April 2013, IAEA head Yukiya Amano said in an interview that his agency “has information indicating that Iran was engaged in activities relevant to the development of nuclear explosive devices in the past and now.”

But the award for great achievements in ideologically driven propaganda goes to their former veteran journalist Brian Whitaker, who actually served as the Guardian’s Middle East editor for seven years.  In a ‘CiF’ piece in Nov. 2011 titled “Why do the US media believe the worse about Iran?”, Whitaker not only ignored IAEA reports but suggested that the clandestine Iranian program may not even be a military program at all, but merely a ‘peaceful civilian project’ to manufacture nanodiamonds.

Nanodiamonds – a substance used in polishing compositions, coatings, lubricants and polymers.

Though the question of whether or not the Islamist regime in Iran will be able to successfully carry out their mission to develop nuclear weapons depends on the resolve of Western political and opinion leaders to stand up to the threat, the Mullahs in Tehran can always count on the Guardian Left to run interference on their clear aspirations to regional hegemony.

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