Ken Pollack: Iran Expert Who's Never Been TherePollack was a formerly sensible progressive who suddenly decided, a few years back, that invading Iraq was just a peachy idea. As Weiss points out, this gave a lot of faux "mainstream" credibility to the neocon's wardrum beating theories. Now he's going to gin up the push for military action against Iran? And the guy has not only never been there, but can't consult any source material in the original language of the authors? Translations have been found, in so many cases covering nearly every subject matter, to lose a lot in the translation, particularly in important, nuanced sub-text and meaning.
I just got a copy of Ken Pollack's latest book on Iran, The Persian Puzzle, and was shocked on flipping to page 429, the Author's Note at the end of the book, to read that Pollack has never been to Iran and doesn't speak Persian, has only dribs and drabs of Arabic.
You'd think a book that purports to explain the "Persian Puzzle" might have offered that disclaimer at the front.
Who is this guy interviewing for his in-depth analysis? Rumsfeld and Rice?