Perspectives on the US v Iran

And here’s another perspective!

___________________________Below is the original post
Politics may be the art of the possible, but knowing what’s possible requires calculation and judgement. A bit of the analytics going on in public. The divide over whether the killing of Suleimani should or should not have been done is for the Monday-morning quarterbacks. What is the strategy going forward, and on both sides. Here are some thoughts from others.

From War With Iran?:

Were the United States to place secondary sanctions on all manner of goods, especially food, the effect would be far greater than an invasion by the entire U.S. army. How the Iranian people would deal with the choice between starving and ending their government’s war on America would be their business.

From Iranian Analytics:

Trump’s base accepts that he is backing out of the Middle East firing, not firing to get in…. The current Iranian crisis is complex and dangerous. And by all means retaliation must be designed to prevent more Iranian violence and aggression rather than aimed at a grandiose agenda of regime change or national liberation. But so far the Iranians, not the U.S., are making all the blunders.

From Attack on Qassem Soleimani was deterrence, not escalation:

Iran knows it faces a choice it didn’t think it faced before. It can vow hellish revenge, but now it has had a taste of the hell the United States can rain down in response. And while the mullahs are extreme, they do not appear to be imprudent. Ruthless self-interest might have gotten them going in the first place, and it is what might restrain them in the end. That is how deterrence works. And that is the bet Trump and the United States made by letting the Iranians know we were not going to take their aggression lying down.

From Targeting Soleimani: Trump was justified, legally and strategically:

A congressional authorization of military force would strengthen the president’s hand. It would not require that force be used (or at least used to the full extent of the authorization), but it would show our enemies that our nation is ready to act in our defense. The strategies of Trump’s predecessors were to hope that a committed jihadist enemy would come to its senses; hope that it would realize its purported interest in regional stability; and hope that by bribing it with billions of dollars in sanctions relief, ransom, and an industrial-strength nuclear program, we could de-escalate the conflict. President Trump’s strategy is to remove the enemy’s most effective military asset (who will not be easily replaceable), to demonstrate to the mullahs what can happen when resolve backs our exponentially superior capabilities, and to continue squeezing the regime with punishing economic sanctions — as it is pressured by the increasingly restive Iranian people. Peace through strength is the better plan.

From Trump Calls the Ayatollah’s Bluff:

Deterrence, says Fred Kagan of the American Enterprise Institute, is credibly holding at risk something your adversary holds dear. If the reports out of Iraq are true, President Trump has put at risk the entirety of the Iranian imperial enterprise even as his maximum-pressure campaign strangles the Iranian economy and fosters domestic unrest. That will get the ayatollah’s attention. And now the United States must prepare for his answer. The bombs over Baghdad? That was Trump calling Khamenei’s bluff. The game has changed. But it isn’t over.

From Iranian Revenge Will Be A Dish Best Served Cold:

For many analysts and observers, Iran and the U.S. are on the cusp of a major confrontation. While such an outcome is possible, the reality is that the Iranian policy of asymmetrical response to American aggression that had been put in place by Qassem Suleimani when he was alive is still in place today. While emotions run high in the streets of Iranian cities, with angry crowds demanding action, the Iranian leadership, of which Suleimani was a trusted insider, recognizes that any precipitous action on its part only plays into the hands of the United States. In seeking revenge for the assassination of Qassem Suleimani, Iran will most likely play the long game, putting into action the old maxim that revenge is a dish best served cold….
Trump started this fight by recklessly ordering the assassination of a senior Iranian government official. The Trump administration now seeks to shape events in the region to best support a direct confrontation with Iran. Such an outcome is not in Iran’s best interests. Instead, they will erode Trump’s political base by embarrassing him in Iraq and with ISIS. Iran will respond, that much can be assured. But the time and place will be of their choosing, when the U.S. expects it least.

For myself, I see no point in absorbing punishment to show good will. But that is only a first approximation. We here know virtually nothing of what is known both in Washington and Teheran. This is where we are and this is what these analysts think, but the future remains unknown as it always is. The only certainty is that whatever Trump does the Democrats, and the media, will insist it was the wrong thing to have done.

Plus this: PETRAEUS ON SOLEIMANI:

Two short questions for what’s next, Gen. Petraeus — US remaining in Iraq, and war with Iran. What’s your best guess?

Well, I think one of the questions is, “What will the diplomatic ramifications of this be?” And again, there have been celebrations in some places in Iraq at the loss of Qasem Soleimani. So, again, there’s no tears being shed in certain parts of the country. And one has to ask what happens in the wake of the killing of the individual who had a veto, virtually, over the leadership of Iraq. What transpires now depends on the calculations of all these different elements. And certainly the US, I would assume, is considering diplomatic initiatives as well, reaching out and saying, “Okay. Does that send a sufficient message of our seriousness? Now, would you like to return to the table?” Or does Iran accelerate the nuclear program, which would, of course, precipitate something further from the United States? Very likely. So lots of calculations here. And I think we’re still very early in the deliberations on all the different ramifications of this very significant action.

And this: Lindsey Graham Has a Message for Iran: If They Retaliate, We Will Hit What They Can’t Afford to Lose:

“To the Iranian government: If you want to stay in the oil business leave America and our allies alone and stop being the largest state sponsor of terrorism in the world,” he continued. Boom. If they lose that, they know they will completely collapse and their own people will run over them.

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49 Responses to Perspectives on the US v Iran

  1. Arky

    If we allow ourselves to be sucked into another war, it is the beginning of the end for all of us in the west.

  2. tombell

    Sen. Lindsey Graham has it right. If the mullahs do something seriously stupid USA will destroy their oil refineries. The sanctions are already biting big time. Loss of oil refineries – game over. What follows is ,however, uncertain.

  3. Infidel Tiger

    If we allow ourselves to be sucked into another war, it is the beginning of the end for all of us in the west.

    Very true.

    Graham is an evil faggot. The Neocons are scum of the earth. May they all burn in hellfire for eternity.

  4. Beachcomber

    Trump’s base accepts that he is backing out of the Middle East firing, not firing to get in….

    That seems to be what Trump is saying and hopefully that is what he is doing.

  5. BorisG,

    Not read much of press on this but wouldn’t it be more prudent to hit him in Syria rather than Iraq? If only to maintain some level of influence on and presence in Iraq, in which the US invested billions if not trillions?

  6. BorisG,

    John Bolton congratulated Trump and said he hopes this is the first step to regime change in Iran.

    Love it or hate it, Boston has a strategy. Trump says his strategy is different. What strategy Trump has, if any, remains unclear. All those press quotes are pure speculation.

    Israelis are cheering it because they would love the US to take on Iran, and see this as the first step to all out war. Their thinking is that even if Trump does not want it, it may be the result of a chain reaction started by this action. It might be hard to control.

  7. Mark A

    BorisG,
    #3281623, posted on January 5, 2020 at 5:21 am

    Their thinking is that even if Trump does not want it, it may be the result of a chain reaction started by this action. It might be hard to control.

    Why?
    President Trump has to do nothing. Why would he?
    It’s all up to the Iranians, can they declare war on the US and try to invade?

  8. A pretty good analysis that sounds logical to me. Key paragraph.
    Some argue that the assassination of Soleimani will increase tensions in the Middle East. This outlook confuses cause and effect: Tensions in the Middle East have intensified over the past decade because of the violent Iranian aggression which Soleimani spearheaded. Aggression which has led to Syria’s destruction and the disintegration of Lebanon and Iraq. Aggression that threatens maritime routes and safe passage in the Arab (Persian) Gulf and the Red Sea, a direct attack on Saudi Arabia’s oil facilities that spiked oil prices and compromised the world’s oil supply. Aggression that has fueled and intensified tensions – including direct military confrontations – between Iran and its proxies and Israel.

    General Soleimani and the Al-Quds force led the escalation in the region in the service of the hegemonic vision of the Iranian Mullah regime. Their actions have so far claimed the lives of hundreds of thousands of people, led to the destruction of states, the disintegration of cities, and caused a wave of millions of refugees. Killing Soleimani is not the cause of the escalation – but the result.

  9. Kurt

    What a pack of delusional lunatics. How do people so deranged occupy positions of power and influence yet are never held accountable for their failures? Their war fetish has caused death, destruction and untold suffering for decades but they still get taken seriously by (nominally) serious blogs like this? It defies belief.

    I can’t help but feel our civilization is in free fall. It was the Left who rotted us from the inside out but it is the sociopathic opportunistic neocons, and their useful idiots who may be responsible for bringing the whole artiface crumbling down.

  10. woolfe

    Kurts rant on the Ayatollahs is correct

  11. Petros

    What I don’t get is that the Jews have lived in Persia for millennia but when they want their own country about 1000km away, the Iranians are hellbent on destroying them.

  12. Iampeter

    Iran and Saudi Arabia should’ve been destroyed after 9/11. But that would require identifying the root ideology of the enemy that we are at war with in the Middle East. That enemy being religion and conservatism. This isn’t going to happen.
    Nor is the government led by a man who wants America to surrender to the Taliban and wanted to invite them to Camp David on the anniversary of 9/11 in order to do so, going to start a war with Iran.
    This is just more incoherent action from an aimless American government with no one in charge.

  13. stackja

    Petering out can’t stay away.

  14. woolfe

    Neoconpeter, war war war war war war. Idiot.

  15. Jo Smyth

    Ever since Trump was elected I can’t remember a single time when the overblown, hysterical rantings by the media have actually come true. They just haven’t got a clue. Best ignored.

  16. OldOzzie

    More on the topic of Highway to Hell

    Scrollers just listen to AC/DC (then scroll)

    Iran general Qassem Soleimani obliterated by push of button 11,000km away

    Richard Spencer And Catherine Philp
    The Times

    Maybe, after 20 years as Iran’s master fixer across the Middle East’s troublespots, he thought he was invincible. Maybe he had put trust in US President Donald Trump’s insistence that he had no desire for war with Iran and wanted to withdraw from the region altogether.

    The general certainly knew that US and Isr*eli leaders had for years plotted his assassination and then baulked at the possible consequences.

    Whatever the reason, the last moves in the great game played by Major General Qassem Soleimani, 62, head of Iran’s Quds Force, showed a brazen confidence.

    When he flew from Damascus to Baghdad late on Thursday night, from one of the key capitals Tehran believes it has in its pocket to another, he did not use some secret military or militia air base. He flew in his personal, Iranian-regime jet to Baghdad’s main international airport.

    As he knew, the airport is not only a daily route for local, foreign and Western civilians and soldiers in and out of the country, it is adjacent to a military base shared between the Iraqi counterterror service and US forces.

    There was little attempt to keep Iran’s eggs in separate baskets. He was travelling with senior aides from the Iranian Revolutionary Guard: Brigadier-General H*ssein Jafari Nia, Colonel Shahroud Mozafari Nia, Major Hadi Taromi and a captain, Vahid Zamanian.

    He was met by Iran’s most senior operative within the Iraqi security and paramilitary forces: Jamal Jaafar Ibr*himi, better known as Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, the man who after the US-UK invasion of Iraq in 2003 set up the country’s answer to Lebanon’s Shia militia Hezbollah.

    Iraq’s Kataeb Hezbollah is accused by the Pentagon of being behind recent rocket attacks on US-occupied bases in Iraq, and five of its own compounds were hit in retaliation by F15 jets on Sunday.

    Muhandis defected to Iran from the regime of Saddam Hussein in 1979 and was recruited as an agent in the ensuing war between the countries by the Revolutionary Guard. He has served it since.

    Alongside Muhandis to greet Soleimani was M*hammed Ridha, a senior figure in the Popular Mobilisation Units (PMU), the official Iraqi government-recognised umbrella group for Iraq’s militias. Muhandis’s formal position was deputy head of the PMU, answerable directly to the Iraqi prime minister, Adel Abdul-Mahdi.

    All seven men piled into a Toyota SUV and a Hyundai minivan and set off out of the airport by the main road. But America’s formidable surveillance capabilities, masterminded from the National Security Agency in Maryland and helped by a giant CIA operation in Baghdad, had Soleimani on their radar.

    Two MQ9 Reaper drones were in place, sent from al-Udeid military and air base in Qatar. The back-up drone was not needed. Just two missiles were used by operators at the US Air Force base at Creech in Nevada, one for each of the two vehicles. The strike had been approved, it is understood, at the same time that President Trump authorised Sunday’s attack on Kataeb Hezbollah.

    Airport security was at the scene immediately, with phone cameras. The images that quickly circulated on social media were graphic. In one, the general’s vehicle was still blazing. In another, a bloodied arm stretched out, its curled hand bearing a recognisable ring.

    The reaction was immediate. Crowds gathered in Soleimani’s home town of Kerman and in Mashhad, one of the regime’s bedrocks of support.

    Iraq was also in uproar. The government clearly found it hard to believe that a notional ally could assassinate Muhandis, officially a senior government official, on Iraqi soil.

    “The assassination of an Iraqi military commander holding an official position is an aggression against Iraq, the state, the government and the people,” the Prime Minister said. “Carrying out liquidation operations against Iraqi leadership figures or from a brotherly country on Iraqi soil is a flagrant violation of Iraqi sovereignty, a blatant attack on the dignity of the country and a dangerous escalation that ignites a devastating war in Iraq, the region and the world.”

    Other Iraqis felt differently, as did opponents of Iran’s influence across the Middle East. Footage captured protesters in Baghdad and southern Iraq dancing in the street – Soleimani was said to have ordered the crackdown on recent demonstrations that led to hundreds being shot dead.

    In Syria, rebel groups that have been gradually crushed in their fight against President Bashar al-Assad by Soleimani and Iran’s Russian allies handed out sweets to children. In Lebanon and elsewhere, relatives of people killed in Iran’s assassination programs punched the air in delight.

    The US was among the first countries to order its citizens to leave Iraq. France, the Netherlands and others followed. No one knows where Iran’s revenge for the loss of its favourite son will come, but it is hard to believe that it is not coming soon.

    Soleimani was not merely Iran’s most senior military commander. He was a towering figure second only to the supreme leader, the only person in the country to whom he was answerable and whom it was often whispered he would replace should the regime fall.

    In Iran and among its Shia allies across the Middle East, Soleimani enjoyed near mythical status, described in Time magazine’s 100 most influential people as “James Bond, Erwin Rommel and Lady Gaga rolled into one”.

    His rise to power came via the Isl*mic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) set up after the 1979 revolution to protect the Isl*mic Republic and enforce its ideological aims. The IRGC cemented its hold after the Iran-Iraq War, ending up with vast control over the country’s economy and resources.

    In the 1990s Soleimani was given command of the Quds Force, an elite unit that undertakes missions outside Iran’s borders and which had already established Hezbollah as a client militia in Lebanon. The force’s role is like few others anywhere in the world; equivalent in American terms to a combination of the CIA and special forces.

    It was in that role that Soleimani became the chief architect of Iran’s regional strategy, creating the arc of influence that Iran terms its “Axis of Resistance” – and others the “Shia crescent”- extending all the way through Iraq, Syria and Lebanon.

    Soleimani remained a shadowy figure in that role for years. It was only in October that he revealed in a television interview that he had been in Lebanon in 2006 helping to direct the conflict between Hezbollah and Isr*el.

    He had seized the opportunity provided by the 2003 US invasion of Iraq to gain a foothold from which to begin sketching Iran’s influence towards the Mediterranean. Through a network of Shia militia he launched attacks on American soldiers in Iraq, seeking to tie them down and then scare them off.

    It was the uprising in Syria that would bring Soleimani out of the shadows, emerging as the public face of Iran’s intervention there. He appeared in photographs visiting troops on the battlefield, in documentaries on Iranian state television and even in a popular music video.

    By the time of his death, the short, silver-haired general was a full-blown celebrity, with millions of followers on Instagram, the only social media site not formally banned in Iran. Much of his power was derived from his close relationship with Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who previously referred to him as “a living martyr of the revolution”.

    The 9/11 attacks brought Soleimani and the US together in common cause against the Taliban. Soleimani gave the Americans guidance on where to strike the group and intelligence on al-Qa*da operatives. The relationship imploded, however, after George W. Bush named Iran as part of an “axis of evil” in his state of the union address. “Soleimani is in a tearing rage,” Ryan Crocker, the deputy ambassador in Kabul at the time, remembers an envoy telling him.

    The battle against Isis, beginning in 2015, brought the US and Soleimani back in common cause as the general commanded Shia militia against the jih*dists. American commanders were forced to hold their noses and join in the fight, launching airstrikes in support of Iranian-backed Shia militia.

    The recent mass protests against the Iraqi government and Iran’s influence over it saw Soleimani draw further on his political skills, flying in and out of Baghdad to direct the government’s handling of the crisis. It was in Baghdad that he met his end in a US drone strike.

    Soleimani had been in the West’s sights many times before. Presidents Bush and Obama passed up opportunities to assassinate him, as did Isr*el, determining that the fallout from such an action could be too great. The pressure on Tehran to retaliate to the loss of such a towering figure will be immense.

    The Times

  17. Kneel

    “How do people so deranged occupy positions of power and influence yet are never held accountable for their failures?”

    Simply – politics and bubbles. With a complicit MSM, politicians focus on unimportant crap like “LGBQWERTY rights”, “climate change” etc to distract you from the fact that the place is getting worse under their watch, not better. They even know this is true, yet it remains their primary strategy to distract you with lots of “moral challenges”, “community projects”, “nation building” etc (“look – squirrels!”) rather than actually fix things that matter to “real” people like improved/expanded public infrastructure, simpler/easier government interactions etc. This is true for both sides of politics – they might be useless, narcissistic arseholes but they learn what “works” (ie, what gets them votes).

    DJT is (hopefully) the answer – with any luck, he will drag the entire political “community” kicking and screaming back to the reality that they are there to serve the interests and wants of the people, not to make themselves rich, or to gain politicians power and influence.
    Alas for us, that doesn’t translate well to our country – it’s much harder to change either arm of the uni-party with no national presidential election to help nudge them in the right direction.

  18. OldOzzie

    Politics
    How Trump Planned the Drone Strike With a Tight Circle of Aides

    The Trump administration had recently asked France and other allies to warn Tehran against killing Americans, according to one of the people. For the president, a red line had been crossed.

    Trump’s close circle of national security advisers was scattered across the country for the holidays — Acting Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney was in Key West; National Security Adviser Robert O’Brien was in California; and Secretary of State Michael Pompeo was in Washington, after canceling planned travel to Ukraine and other countries on Jan. 1.

    Vice President Mike Pence was in Annapolis, Maryland, for his daughter Charlotte’s wedding on Saturday, then at Sanibel Island in Florida.

    The team used secure communications lines to repeatedly discuss the strike. On Thursday, a plane from the White House fleet was sent to California to ferry O’Brien to Palm Beach to be with Trump as the attack unfolded.

    A small number of lawyers on the National Security Council were involved. Secrecy was paramount, as aides worried that one of Trump’s most fraught and consequential decisions would be leaked ahead of the strike.

    Risky Attack

    While Soleimani’s death has been cheered by many of Trump’s supporters and congressional allies, Democrats say the president’s decision risks endangering American diplomats and troops in the Middle East and beyond. Within the Trump administration, there is even concern about Iranian reprisals inside U.S. borders.

    As his administration planned the strike, Trump engaged in what looked outwardly like his normal vacation activities. He traveled to his golf course near Mar-a-Lago every day since Christmas. Though on Tuesday, the day protesters the U.S. says were instigated by Iran stormed the American embassy in Baghdad, he was there only about 50 minutes

    The White House opted against notifying Congress ahead of the attack out of concern for security, a person familiar with the matter said. The Department of Homeland Security, which is partially responsible for deterring potential Iranian retaliation on U.S. soil, was only notified of the Soleimani strike after the fact. White House communications officials were excluded from the planning.

  19. OldOzzie

    More

    How Trump decided to kill Iran’s Soleimani

    The U.S. strike against Tehran’s feared paramilitary commander followed months of Iranian attacks.

  20. Helen

    Five people were killed. One of them was leader of the Iraqi forces that led the fight against isis and al quaeda. The execution came after protests by Iraqis against both Iranian and US influence in Iraq.
    We should be very wary if the phrase regime change. It was tried in Iraq. It was trued in Syria. Right now Lebanon, Syria, Iraq and part of Yemen are unstable and dangerous with clear links to Iran.
    No one knows what Iran might do but we know, for example, that someone has demonstrated a very direct capability to wreck Saudi oil production. What other options they have at hand we can only guess.
    Dangerous times

  21. cuckoo

    Can we please just focus on the essentials here? Trump was eating ice cream when he heard of the successful introduction of Soleimani to his 72 virgins. Probably two scoops. Oh the humanity..

  22. FelixKruell

    I have no objection to a carefully thought out strategy that involves the (much deserved) killing of Soleimani to slap down the Iranians. So preliminary applause for a Trump. He did good.

    But now we will see if there actually was a carefully thought out strategy to go with it, when the inevitable response from the Iranians arrives.

    So far Trumps overarching strategies across a number of these types of issues (China, North Korea etc) have yet to pay off – early days, but worrying none the less.

  23. Andre Lewis

    Whatever the US doe sin the middle east will either backfire or make things worse. For more than a thousand years this part of the world has been family fighting family, tribe fighting tribe, Shia fighting Shiite and Arabs fighting Persians and nothing changes except the country borders and the death toll which goes inexorably up.
    The West could just leave them to it until they are wiped out or fight to a standstill. Nobody outside of this blighted region should care.

  24. Muddy

    If we allow ourselves to be sucked into another war

    Where have you people been for the last four decades? How do you define ‘war?’
    Iran routinely, publicly, unashamedly, declares war on the U.S. and Israel.
    Iran has indirectly targeted U.S. and Allied soldiers in Iraq by their funding and training of proxy militia.
    Iran finances such proxies in numerous parts of the world, not just in the Middle East and Arabian peninsula, but also in Latin America.
    Iran makes no secret of what their goal is (the practicality of which is irrelevant here), regarding America, American allies and interests, and Israel.
    The declaration and initiation of war between Iran and the U.S., has long been done and dusted. By Iran.

    But no. Keep grooming your unicorn, folks, and magic will happen.
    FFS.

  25. Kneel

    “So far Trumps overarching strategies across a number of these types of issues (China, North Korea etc) have yet to pay off …”

    Oh, I dunno… I mean, he got Nth and Sth Korea to talk to each other, he got China and Japan to talk to each other, he got the other NATO countries to start paying their own way. I think if he had his way, he’d pull all US troops back to the USA and refuse to be involved in affairs that have no impact on the US directly (eg, no more Kosovo’s). After about 6 months of that, the one’s who’d been screaming the loudest for the US to stay out of other peoples affairs would be screaming for the US to “intervene” – it’s the old “be careful what you wish for, you may jest get it” on the global geopolitical stage.

  26. Keith Forwheels

    Either turn it all to glass or stay out of foreign entanglements. This half way in between stuff doesn’t work out well for the average person on any meaningful measure. And FWIW, I’m not advocating turning it all to glass.

  27. OldOzzie

    ANALYSIS
    Why the Death of an Iranian Commander Won’t Mean World War III

    The U.S. dealt a major blow in taking out Iran’s imperial strategist. But the mullahs’ next move likely won’t be a dramatic escalation.

  28. Iampeter

    Neoconpeter, war war war war war war. Idiot.

    Yea, you don’t know what a Neocon is.
    Also, I do love how so many of today’s conservatives sound verbatim like yesterdays progressives, while remaining deaf to it.

    Iran makes no secret of what their goal is (the practicality of which is irrelevant here), regarding America, American allies and interests, and Israel.
    The declaration and initiation of war between Iran and the U.S., has long been done and dusted. By Iran.

    Wow. One of those rare moments someone at the Cat posts something that is not parody-level, leftist gibberish.

  29. Professor Fred Lenin

    A meeting of islamofascist terrorist leaders issued a statement deploring the Americans killing of the killer general ,he was in position where even having his own children a shields wouldnt work,rockets dont have a conscience . The meeting drafted a protest to theUN seeking censure of the evil American devils and the arch satan Trump . Members of the group now go in fear of retaliation pfor their actions , bodyguards and child and women shields have been negated , members are now advised to stop travelling putside their underground fortresses ,and keep an eye on the sky . A spokesman said the Americans were crude savages using rockets intead of facing their enemies face to face like brave islamic freedom fighters and soldiers do .

  30. classical_hero

    It’s fun seeing the left weep over the death of this guy. He’s behind the killing of hundreds of Americans and hundreds more of Iranians, Syrians and Iraqis. America will do what is necessary to show Iran how serious it is.

    To all those thinking this will lead to war. You’re idiots.

  31. Vicki

    Issue 1 in understanding this extraordinary escalation of events is the internal political mess within the “government” of Iraq. After the elimination of the IS threat, the struggle resumed to establish a Shiite dominated government aligned with Shiite Iran.

    Struggles between players such as the outgoing PM Abdul Mahdi and the extremist Shia cleric Muqtada al-Sadr have been part of the destabilisation of the economy in Iraq. Qassim Suleimani had been tasked by Iran in reestablishing a stable government soundly aligned with Iran.

    It is doubtful if Trump really understands the intricacies of such Middle Eastern viper’s nests. Surely the US interests are best served in leaving this to the locals.

    And whatever you think about Suleimani (& commentators need to look more deeply into this man’s extraordinary role in Iran over the last 40 years), history will surely acknowledge the importance of his role in persuading Putin to enter the fight against IS. It was pivotal.

  32. Kurt

    woolfe
    #3281663, posted on January 5, 2020 at 7:51 am
    Kurts rant on the Ayatollahs is correct

    Sorry. Forgot about those 200,000 Iraqi civilians killed since the 2003. All the Ayatollahs fault.

    How psyopathic is it to be for that much death and destruction? Seek medical help.

  33. FelixKruell

    Kneel:

    Oh, I dunno… I mean, he got Nth and Sth Korea to talk to each other, he got China and Japan to talk to each other, he got the other NATO countries to start paying their own way.

    They’ve always been happy to talk to each other (on and off). But that doesn’t mean they have resolved any issues.

    But agree on the NATO countries point.

  34. Kneel

    Felix:
    “They’ve always been happy to talk to each other (on and off).”

    Sure, but they appeared to be in an (extended) “off” period, and in both cases tensions were growing, not being lessened – until DJT “upset” both of ’em, and they managed to start talking pretty quick. Now THAT’S international diplomacy! As you say though, no results as yet and it may be like getting between two brothers fighting – they both turn on you until you go, then get back to it. Certainly, that seems to be the entire history of the ME, so yeah, we need to wait.
    However that said, getting them in the same room and talking is more than POTUS 44 managed, and hard to see such a development as anything other than a positive.

  35. jupes

    targeted 52 Iranian sites (representing the 52 American hostages taken by Iran many years ago)

    This is gold. By righting a wrong of US history, Trump shows how diplomacy is done.

  36. Iampeter
    #3282222, posted on January 5, 2020 at 1:33 pm

    Like little Nicky Fuentes, all you do is attack the right.

    Which means, like him, you are in fact a leftist.

  37. Entropy

    I suspect this thread is infested.

  38. John Stankevicius

    I amPeter
    Re the cause is religion and conservatism. I disagree. It is the left which have reached fever pitch which is causing social and international war.
    Lefties have hateful groups such as “ Australians against liberals” .
    The left push anti Israeli stories, immigrate muslims and when anti semitism happens such as in the US – Nazism is blamed.
    If you work in a mining company you do not wear a uniform as you will be beaten up outside of your work place.
    If you are a farmer activist come on to your property and occupy and damage it.
    Recently the idiot student union have possessed soci,al media. If you are a male you are a murder, rapist, woman beater etc
    Then there is the all out attack on a Catholics.
    It is cool for pop artist and lefties to engage in pedophilia and they tried to legalise and soften this up with the term inter generational sex.
    When our citizens are killed overseas the media treat it as ho hum they deserved it. If a Aussie drug dealer is imprisoned overseas it is a travesty.
    The left have Glorified the use life ending drugs for recreation, championed the murder of the unborn.
    From my experience, they think they are smart, stand in public place to shout hatred, Do not want to work hiding behind the I am against capitalism nonsense, do not have children as who wants to bring children into this world.
    You destroy real skills eg trades and idolise pop singers and actors.
    You go on about it is immoral how some one can earn so much money running a corporation, a small business but lefties do not say this of pop artists or movie stars.
    International affairs stay out of it, when fAced with a life or death choice you will always choose your ancestry path.
    I agree with Kneels post above.

    I apologise this is off the topic.

  39. Kurt

    Entropy
    #3282751, posted on January 5, 2020 at 8:29 pm
    I suspect this thread is infested

    This whole website is infested. It used to be a good centre right economics journal. It’s now been infested by neocons who use it to push their endless war agenda. I’m done here. I’m tired of reading posts celebrating death and destruction.

  40. Elderly White Man From Skipton

    Helen (above) has nailed it. This action is not the end of anything. All we have now, as Rumsfeld might say, are known unknowns and unknown unknowns.

  41. Kurt

    mareeS
    #3283358, posted on January 6, 2020 at 11:00 am
    ByeBye, Kurt.

    Funny. That’s what the Iraqis said the the US 🙂

    Bye. Bye

  42. Iampeter

    Like little Nicky Fuentes, all you do is attack the right.

    I’m attacking conservatives because they are politically illiterate and religious leftists.
    Nick Fuentes is attacking conservatives because they are not religiously left wing enough for him.

    None of you are on “the right” nor have any idea what that even entails.

  43. Peter Duell

    It depends how far back we want to take it. But if we take it from the fall of Gaddafi, Iran’s influence in the region has been relentlessly positive. The general has to be considered the great nemesis of ISIS. A western/Israeli proxy terrorist agency. The general was the force for civilisation here.

    The General, along with the Russians, obliterated ISIS. Thats why the zionists tricked Trump into killing him. This is a terrible mistake. Reagan wanted to reconcile with the Iranians, just as he had done so with the Soviets. Its our side that are the terrorists. And Trump has been fooled into an heinous act of terrorism. The great terrorist-fighter was on a diplomatic peace mission to Iraq when he and more Iraqis were murdered. Including a senior Iraqi official.

    Just a few days earlier the American deep state had murdered about 30 Iraqis fighting ISIS on the Syrian border. Trump probably did not know a thing about this. And he was on holidays. This is the greatest tragedy of the Trump administration.

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