Jump to content


Unraveling the Iran Deal (or How to Put Iran's Nuclear Program Into Overdrive)


192 replies to this topic

#161 LFC

    Fiscal Conservative

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 27887 posts
  • LocationPennsylvania

Posted 16 May 2019 - 12:30 PM

So now we know Bolton's strategy. Attack Iran. When they don't attack back blame them for something that happens without any real evidence. Attack them again. Normally it requires both sides to ratchet tensions up to the breaking point. This time it's all Bolton who is ratcheting things up for both sides. It's so much more efficient that way.

Quote

The Trump administration’s increasingly aggressive military posture toward Iran is overshadowing its more concrete plans for crippling the regime in Tehran: a set of robust new sanctions to add to its economic warfare campaign.

Senior professionals inside the administration, who have been crafting Iran policy since before President Trump’s inauguration, are considering another sanctions package designed to destabilize Iran, undermine that country’s leadership, and, potentially, serve as an alternative to military action. Among the proposals being looked at are sanctions that would effectively blacklist certain sectors of the Iranian economy, including the petrochemical sector, according to two individuals with direct knowledge of the conversations.

An aggressive sanctions strategy isn’t a new tactic for the president. Since Trump took office, the administration has slapped sanctions on nearly 1,000 individuals and entities to tighten the screws on Tehran. But the latest round of proposed sanctions would make it even more difficult, if not legally impossible, for many other countries or companies to do business in some of Iran’s most significant business sectors.


I guess the plan is to pretty much force them to restart their nuclear program in order to safeguard themselves and then attack them for restarting their nuclear program. Sure looks like it has Bolton's (and Pompeo's) fingerprints aaaalllll over it.
" 'Individual conscience' means that women only get contraceptives if their employers, their physicians, their pharmacists, their husbands and/or fathers, pastors, and possibly their mayors, Governors, State Secretaries of Health, Congressmen, Senators, and President all agree that in that particular case they're justifiable." --D.C. Sessions

"That's the problem with being implacable foes - no one has any incentive to treat you as anything more than an obstacle to be overcome."

"The 'Road to Serfdom' is really all right turns." --Progressive Whisperer

""The GOP ... where every accusation is also a confession." --Progressive Whisperer

#162 LFC

    Fiscal Conservative

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 27887 posts
  • LocationPennsylvania

Posted 16 May 2019 - 01:10 PM

Sounds like Pompeo and Bolton are just running roughshod over Trump who, in typical fashion, doesn't really have any clue what's going on. You know that both of these guys think he's an idiot and snicker behind his back.

Quote

President Trump is getting increasingly agitated with his secretary of state and national security adviser for their proposals on how to stifle an apparent threat against U.S. personnel in Iran and other parts of the Middle East, The Washington Post reported.

Trump views Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and National Security Adviser John Bolton’s strategy as “warlike,” in the Post’s words, and feels their plans bypass his own thinking, an administration official with knowledge of the conversations told the Post.

“They are getting way out ahead of themselves, and Trump is annoyed,” the official told the Post. “There was a scramble for Bolton and Pompeo and others to get on the same page.”

" 'Individual conscience' means that women only get contraceptives if their employers, their physicians, their pharmacists, their husbands and/or fathers, pastors, and possibly their mayors, Governors, State Secretaries of Health, Congressmen, Senators, and President all agree that in that particular case they're justifiable." --D.C. Sessions

"That's the problem with being implacable foes - no one has any incentive to treat you as anything more than an obstacle to be overcome."

"The 'Road to Serfdom' is really all right turns." --Progressive Whisperer

""The GOP ... where every accusation is also a confession." --Progressive Whisperer

#163 JackD

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 1608 posts
  • LocationChicago area

Posted 16 May 2019 - 03:58 PM

I'm not sure they're running roughshod over him. It's just as likely they're playing bad cop to his good cop to slightly soften his threats to induce their willingness to negotiate with him. He did appoint the guys and he isn't firing them.

#164 golden_valley

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 5586 posts
  • LocationNorthern California

Posted 16 May 2019 - 04:05 PM

View PostJackD, on 16 May 2019 - 03:58 PM, said:

He did appoint the guys and he isn't firing them.

No one else is willing to deal with him? One commentator said Trump's real problem with Bolton is that the media is suggesting Bolton is running the show. That's what got Bannon fired.

#165 LFC

    Fiscal Conservative

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 27887 posts
  • LocationPennsylvania

Posted 16 May 2019 - 04:50 PM

I think Hugh Hewitt (of Clown Hall infamy) may have dementia. He seems to forgot who was involved in the attacks of 9/11. Yes, this is the best argument they have on the right-wingnuts' stance on Iran.

Quote

MSNBC host Ali Velshi tussled with conservative commentator Hugh Hewitt Thursday afternoon over escalating tensions between the Trump administration and Iran.

“I believe the most important aspect of this confrontation is that the nature of the Iranian regime has not changed since 1979,” Hewitt said. “It’s not about John Bolton. It’s not about Mike Pompeo. It’s not about President Trump. It’s about the fact that we have a theocracy run by a dictator,” Hewitt said.

As Hewitt continued to make his case about the threat from Iran, Velshi interjected.

“I could say all of this stuff about the Saudis, right? The Saudis are bombing the Yemenis. The Saudis have forces — they had them in Syria, the had them in Iraq. What changed? … And the Saudis are run by a dictator too.”

“I don’t think you can say that they act like the Iranian regime,” Hewitt said. The Iranian regime exports chaos, they are a terrorist organization. And they announced last year —.”

“Hugh, just stop, Hugh, for heaven’s sake. The Saudis don’t export terror? The Saudis don’t have expansionist tendencies? I’m not defending — don’t put me in a position to defend the Iranians because I’m not interested at all. But you’re inventing this situation that Iran is some kind of danger…”

" 'Individual conscience' means that women only get contraceptives if their employers, their physicians, their pharmacists, their husbands and/or fathers, pastors, and possibly their mayors, Governors, State Secretaries of Health, Congressmen, Senators, and President all agree that in that particular case they're justifiable." --D.C. Sessions

"That's the problem with being implacable foes - no one has any incentive to treat you as anything more than an obstacle to be overcome."

"The 'Road to Serfdom' is really all right turns." --Progressive Whisperer

""The GOP ... where every accusation is also a confession." --Progressive Whisperer

#166 Traveler

    Rambling Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 13030 posts
  • LocationPhilly Area

Posted 17 May 2019 - 08:26 AM

And just in time, we have Eli spinning away.

Quote

If there’s one thing Democrats and ayatollahs agree on these days, it’s that John Bolton is trying to start a war with Iran. President Donald Trump has said that he is open to negotiations and does not want a war, but his mustachioed national security adviser will not abide.

Popular as it may be in Washington, this theory has it backwards. Bolton’s antipathy toward Iran is well-known and longstanding, but the current administration strategy is not aimed at starting a war with Iran. It’s designed to avoid one.
See, it's 3-dimensional chess...
"Men occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of them pick themselves up and hurry off as if nothing had happened."-- Winston Churchill
"Anyone who has the power to make you believe absurdities has the power to make you commit injustices" Voltaire

#167 LFC

    Fiscal Conservative

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 27887 posts
  • LocationPennsylvania

Posted 17 May 2019 - 09:16 AM

View PostTraveler, on 17 May 2019 - 08:26 AM, said:

And just in time, we have Eli spinning away. See, it's 3-dimensional chess...

If only this guy had access to a system that would allow him to look up past journalism to see what Bolton has done and advocated for in his earlier years. Then he might get an understanding of who he really is. Of course where would a tiny garage-based outfit like Bloomberg get access to that kind of system? [/snark]
" 'Individual conscience' means that women only get contraceptives if their employers, their physicians, their pharmacists, their husbands and/or fathers, pastors, and possibly their mayors, Governors, State Secretaries of Health, Congressmen, Senators, and President all agree that in that particular case they're justifiable." --D.C. Sessions

"That's the problem with being implacable foes - no one has any incentive to treat you as anything more than an obstacle to be overcome."

"The 'Road to Serfdom' is really all right turns." --Progressive Whisperer

""The GOP ... where every accusation is also a confession." --Progressive Whisperer

#168 LFC

    Fiscal Conservative

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 27887 posts
  • LocationPennsylvania

Posted 17 May 2019 - 10:28 AM

The treaty trashing Trump-Pompeo-Bolton triangle is even more dysfunctional than I realized.

Quote

Discussions on how to deal with Iran have thrown two of President Donald Trump’s top advisers on the issue into stark relief.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is the perennial politician, a yes man looking out for his own career future, versus National Security Adviser John Bolton, a man at the end of his career who’s aggressively pushing his own vision.

According to a Politico report, Pompeo tries to carry out Trump’s foreign policy vision, never one to push back or ruffle his feathers. Bolton, on the other hand, is intent on shaping that policy in alignment with his own views, no matter if it makes him the unpopular kid in class.

Bolton has also been trying to circumvent Pompeo in the policy decision process, taking to Twitter to deliver his decisions without the Secretary of State’s input.

Though both men are hawkish, in this case Pompeo has been erring more on the side of negotiation, or at least mixing it into his saber-rattling, while Bolton is advocating for pure force.

Trump this week denied reports of infighting and told Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan that he doesn’t want war with Iran.

" 'Individual conscience' means that women only get contraceptives if their employers, their physicians, their pharmacists, their husbands and/or fathers, pastors, and possibly their mayors, Governors, State Secretaries of Health, Congressmen, Senators, and President all agree that in that particular case they're justifiable." --D.C. Sessions

"That's the problem with being implacable foes - no one has any incentive to treat you as anything more than an obstacle to be overcome."

"The 'Road to Serfdom' is really all right turns." --Progressive Whisperer

""The GOP ... where every accusation is also a confession." --Progressive Whisperer

#169 D. C. Sessions

    I don't have to pretend to be an adult any more

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 9426 posts
  • LocationCentral New Mexico

Posted 17 May 2019 - 12:28 PM

View PostLFC, on 14 May 2019 - 04:03 PM, said:

Quote

Attacking civilian tankers would be extremely foolish, and Iran has good reason not to fall into the trap that Bolton is trying to set. The WSJ article goes on to acknowledge that no other government has endorsed this finding, and other officials doubt that Iran would have been involved:

Reminds me of when I was a dinner guest of some colleagues in France as the US was ramping up to invade Iraq to stop their WMD program -- which, strangely, nobody else could find a trace of.

Hey, it worked once twice three times is the charm!
The way a lot of catastrophes happen is that X doesn't occur because there are safeguards in place, therefore people assume X isn't a worry and they remove the safeguards. Then X happens.
— Nate Silver
"Robots aren't the problem. Capitalism is." -- Last words of Stephen Hawking.
These days, "libertarian" is just a euphemism for a Nazi who's afraid to commit.
"If you're not outraged, you're not paying attention." -- Heather Heyer
"I'd rather have my child, but by golly, if I gotta give her up, we're gonna make it count." -- Her mother
"Your purpose, then, plainly stated, is that you will destroy the Government, unless you be allowed to construe and enforce the Constitution as you please, on all points in dispute between you and us. You will rule or ruin in all events." -- some RINO

#170 LFC

    Fiscal Conservative

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 27887 posts
  • LocationPennsylvania

Posted 17 May 2019 - 02:12 PM

Larison makes the point that Trump doesn't seem to have an issue with what Bolton is doing. He's just scared of looking like he's not in charge. The shallowness of Trump knows no bounds.

Quote

There is an interesting detail in this New York Times report on the Trump administration’s Iran policy:

Quote

Mr. Trump is less frustrated with Mr. Bolton over his handling of Iran — he favors the tougher measures as a warning to Tehran [bold mine-DL] — than over the evolving narrative that his national security adviser is leading the administration’s policy in the Middle East, according to three officials.

The president, they said, is well-versed and comfortable with the administration’s recent steps [bold mine-DL], which have included imposing increasingly onerous sanctions on Iran and designating the military wing of the government, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, as a foreign terrorist organization.

It seems that Trump’s reported frustration with Bolton doesn’t stem from unhappiness with what Bolton has been doing, but comes instead from the perception that Bolton is running the administration’s foreign policy. The “narrative” about Bolton exists because the National Security Advisor is leading the administration’s policy in the Middle East, and he seems to be leading administration policies in Venezuela and North Korea as well. The quickest way to kill the “narrative” would be to get rid of Bolton and undo some or all of the policies he has supported, but none of that seems likely to happen anytime soon.

Trump and Bolton don’t appear to have a strong disagreement over Iran policy. The report says Trump is “comfortable” with what they have done and he “favors” the measures that Bolton has taken. The president doesn’t seem to mind letting Bolton do whatever he wants as long as it doesn’t make Trump look like he’s not in control. The article says Trump has stated that he doesn’t want war, but he is in this position because he has signed off on the agenda of a warmonger whom he continues to entrust with running administration foreign policy. If he doesn’t want war, he shouldn’t have a hard-line regime change fanatic as his National Security Advisor, or at the very least he should stop agreeing to almost everything that the fanatic wants. As long as Bolton remains where he is and is allowed to have free rein, the Trump administration will keep flailing and blundering into avoidable international crises, several of which could get the U.S. into an unnecessary war.

" 'Individual conscience' means that women only get contraceptives if their employers, their physicians, their pharmacists, their husbands and/or fathers, pastors, and possibly their mayors, Governors, State Secretaries of Health, Congressmen, Senators, and President all agree that in that particular case they're justifiable." --D.C. Sessions

"That's the problem with being implacable foes - no one has any incentive to treat you as anything more than an obstacle to be overcome."

"The 'Road to Serfdom' is really all right turns." --Progressive Whisperer

""The GOP ... where every accusation is also a confession." --Progressive Whisperer

#171 LFC

    Fiscal Conservative

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 27887 posts
  • LocationPennsylvania

Posted 17 May 2019 - 02:13 PM

Our NATO (for now) allies think Pompeo is an idiot. They're right, of course.

Quote

The Trump administration’s overhyped claims of an increased Iranian threat went over like a lead balloon with allied officials this week:

Quote

A NATO military intelligence official who was briefed on Pompeo’s claims about increased Iranian aggression in the Middle East said the substance of the intelligence that the Americans briefed was utterly unconvincing — even insulting [bold mine-DL].

“Do they think that we are stupid?” asked the NATO official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity.

Pompeo has a record of making false and exaggerated claims about Iran and its involvement in other conflicts, especially in Yemen, so he probably didn’t have much credibility among allies going into this. It isn’t surprising that his presentation of the latest administration spin didn’t go over well. Our treaty allies don’t share the administration’s Iran obsession and don’t want to be drawn in to a new conflict, so to convince them the evidence of new and unusual Iranian behavior would have to be very strong. At the same time, the Secretary of State has been so used to getting away with making outrageous false statements to Congress and the public for more than a year that he probably didn’t expect to encounter so much skepticism when he tried to pass off weak evidence as if it were solid proof of increased threats.

The information Pompeo provided predictably didn’t back up the administration’s alarmist statements and provocative behavior:

" 'Individual conscience' means that women only get contraceptives if their employers, their physicians, their pharmacists, their husbands and/or fathers, pastors, and possibly their mayors, Governors, State Secretaries of Health, Congressmen, Senators, and President all agree that in that particular case they're justifiable." --D.C. Sessions

"That's the problem with being implacable foes - no one has any incentive to treat you as anything more than an obstacle to be overcome."

"The 'Road to Serfdom' is really all right turns." --Progressive Whisperer

""The GOP ... where every accusation is also a confession." --Progressive Whisperer

#172 Rich T Bikkies

    Trainee Basil Fawlty. Practising Victor Meldrew

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 4122 posts
  • LocationBirmingham, UK

Posted 17 May 2019 - 02:38 PM

Yeah, I remember Trump saying "What's the point of all these nukes if we never get to use them?"

Ah, well, I'm desperately doing my positive thinking exercises.
Reality is a hallucination caused by alcohol deprivation.

Only Satan can rebuke sin. The righteous don't know enough.

God is not dead. He was merely voted out of office.

You can do anything with anybody if you just save them the trouble of thinking.

#173 D. C. Sessions

    I don't have to pretend to be an adult any more

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 9426 posts
  • LocationCentral New Mexico

Posted 17 May 2019 - 03:19 PM

View PostTraveler, on 17 May 2019 - 08:26 AM, said:

And just in time, we have Eli spinning away.
See, it's 3-dimensional chess...

Overestimating by two.
The way a lot of catastrophes happen is that X doesn't occur because there are safeguards in place, therefore people assume X isn't a worry and they remove the safeguards. Then X happens.
— Nate Silver
"Robots aren't the problem. Capitalism is." -- Last words of Stephen Hawking.
These days, "libertarian" is just a euphemism for a Nazi who's afraid to commit.
"If you're not outraged, you're not paying attention." -- Heather Heyer
"I'd rather have my child, but by golly, if I gotta give her up, we're gonna make it count." -- Her mother
"Your purpose, then, plainly stated, is that you will destroy the Government, unless you be allowed to construe and enforce the Constitution as you please, on all points in dispute between you and us. You will rule or ruin in all events." -- some RINO

#174 D. C. Sessions

    I don't have to pretend to be an adult any more

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 9426 posts
  • LocationCentral New Mexico

Posted 17 May 2019 - 03:31 PM

The Trump maladministration seems to be thinking in terms of tightening the screws on Iran until they beg to get the monarchy back.

Pause.

Clue: the USA doesn't have the international leverage we pissed away in Iraq. We've already gone past the breaking point there; by unilaterally rescinding the multilateral agreement on nukes because it had n****r fingerprints on it and demanding that other countries follow suit because The Great and Powerful Trump ordered them to, they're being forced to choose sides. If "we" go even further and demand that they apply our arbitrary sanctions or face Our Terrible Displeasure I really don't see many alternatives to replying with a stiff middle finger.

China and North Korea, in particular, will be privately tickled to have one of their ships attacked by an American naval blockade [1] in the name of freedom of navigation in the Straights of Hormuz. Game that one out.

[1] In case anyone forgets, a blockade is an act of war.
The way a lot of catastrophes happen is that X doesn't occur because there are safeguards in place, therefore people assume X isn't a worry and they remove the safeguards. Then X happens.
— Nate Silver
"Robots aren't the problem. Capitalism is." -- Last words of Stephen Hawking.
These days, "libertarian" is just a euphemism for a Nazi who's afraid to commit.
"If you're not outraged, you're not paying attention." -- Heather Heyer
"I'd rather have my child, but by golly, if I gotta give her up, we're gonna make it count." -- Her mother
"Your purpose, then, plainly stated, is that you will destroy the Government, unless you be allowed to construe and enforce the Constitution as you please, on all points in dispute between you and us. You will rule or ruin in all events." -- some RINO

#175 LFC

    Fiscal Conservative

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 27887 posts
  • LocationPennsylvania

Posted 24 May 2019 - 02:45 PM

This is effectively John Bolton's boner pill.

Quote

The U.S. will bolster its military presence in the Middle East with an additional 1,500 troops, President Donald Trump said Friday amid heightened tensions with Iran.

Trump said the troops would have a “mostly protective” role as part of a build-up that began this month in response to what the U.S said was a threat from Iran without providing details or evidence.

“We are going to be sending a relatively small number of troops, mostly protective,” the president told reporters at the White House before setting off on a trip to Japan. “Some very talented people are going to the Middle East right now and we’ll see what happens.”

Trump has in recent weeks alternated between tough talk toward Iran and a more conciliatory message, insisting he is open to negotiations with the Islamic Republic. He seemed to downplay the prospect of conflict when he spoke at the White House.

“Right now, I don’t think Iran wants to fight and I certainly don’t think they want to fight with us,” he said.

The administration notified Congress earlier in the day about the troop plans.

The forces would number “roughly” 1,500 and would deploy in the coming weeks, “with their primary responsibilities and activities being defensive in nature,” according to a copy of the notification obtained by The Associated Press.

Their mission would include protecting U.S. forces already in the region and ensuring freedom of navigation, the notification said.


How soon before one of these troops is "attacked", requiring our "response?" I give it a month.
" 'Individual conscience' means that women only get contraceptives if their employers, their physicians, their pharmacists, their husbands and/or fathers, pastors, and possibly their mayors, Governors, State Secretaries of Health, Congressmen, Senators, and President all agree that in that particular case they're justifiable." --D.C. Sessions

"That's the problem with being implacable foes - no one has any incentive to treat you as anything more than an obstacle to be overcome."

"The 'Road to Serfdom' is really all right turns." --Progressive Whisperer

""The GOP ... where every accusation is also a confession." --Progressive Whisperer

#176 golden_valley

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 5586 posts
  • LocationNorthern California

Posted 24 May 2019 - 07:03 PM

View PostLFC, on 24 May 2019 - 02:45 PM, said:

This is effectively John Bolton's boner pill.




How soon before one of these troops is "attacked", requiring our "response?" I give it a month.

And what is a "mostly protective" role for troops? Stringing up concertina wire or something?

#177 LFC

    Fiscal Conservative

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 27887 posts
  • LocationPennsylvania

Posted 05 June 2019 - 10:57 AM

Bolton's beating of the war drums is amplified by a U.S. government funded propaganda campaign against anti-war advocates in the U.S. Welcome to Iraq 2.0 ... now with more Iran in it!

Quote

A campaign funded by the U.S. Department of State amplified an influential, war-hungry D.C. think tank chief’s attacks on Iranian-American anti-war advocates, apparently turning a new government-sponsored anti-disinformation initiative into a megaphone for advocates of military confrontation with Tehran.

The @IranDisinfo Twitter account boosted Foundation for the Defense of Democracies (FDD) chief executive Mark Dubowitz, while a website associated with the social media profile published the work of FDD senior adviser Saeed Ghasseminejad.

The campaign — formally known as the Iran Disinformation Project — received funding from the State Department through its Global Engagement Center, an initiative created in 2017 with the aim of countering foreign propaganda efforts.

But State pulled funding for the campaign on Friday after IranDisinfo was found to be attacking American opponents of the Trump administration’s Iran policy, telling journalists in a statement that some of its activities went beyond the “scope” of the grant.

Those attacked include Washington Post journalist Jason Rezanian, who was imprisoned by the Iranian government for 544 days, and a Human Rights Watch researcher probing the effects of sanctions on access to medicine in Iran.

" 'Individual conscience' means that women only get contraceptives if their employers, their physicians, their pharmacists, their husbands and/or fathers, pastors, and possibly their mayors, Governors, State Secretaries of Health, Congressmen, Senators, and President all agree that in that particular case they're justifiable." --D.C. Sessions

"That's the problem with being implacable foes - no one has any incentive to treat you as anything more than an obstacle to be overcome."

"The 'Road to Serfdom' is really all right turns." --Progressive Whisperer

""The GOP ... where every accusation is also a confession." --Progressive Whisperer

#178 LFC

    Fiscal Conservative

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 27887 posts
  • LocationPennsylvania

Posted 07 June 2019 - 01:38 PM

More bed wetting about how Iran is an imminent threat. I've been listening to the same chant since the 80s. If this threat is going to come to fruition and cause serious damage to the U.S. then it's going to happen at a pace that's literally slower than global climate change. Gen. McKenzie was brought in by the Trump administration because he's a neocon who parroted the lines that conflated the (highly successful) nuclear deal with every other complaint about Iran. Now he's screeching about how Iran was just about to attack us. That's what he was hired to do. Color me skeptical.

Quote

A top US military official just said the Iranian threat against Americans in the Middle East remains “imminent,” but no major attacks have occurred mainly because of swift US action over the past month.

In early May, National Security Adviser John Bolton announced the US was deploying an aircraft carrier, bomber planes, and anti-missile batteries to the Persian Gulf in response to “a number of troubling and escalatory indications and warnings” of threats from Iran.

The move, Bolton said, was meant “to send a clear and unmistakable message to the Iranian regime that any attack on United States interests or on those of our allies will be met with unrelenting force.”

Iran apparently intended to target US troops in Iraq and Syria, or even use drones against Americans in a key waterway near Yemen. There was also information that Iran put cruise missiles on ships, heightening fears that it might attack US Navy vessels with them.

But Marine Gen. Kenneth “Frank” McKenzie, who leads American forces in the Middle East, told multiple reporters in Baghdad on Thursday that the situation is somewhat on pause thanks to the US.

The initial deployment of ships and planes, along with the introduction of surveillance aircraft, has made Iran “sort of step back and recalculate the course that they apparently were on,” McKenzie said. He added, however, “I think the threat is imminent ... I don’t actually believe the threat has diminished.”

In other words, the quick US military response to the intelligence seems to have stopped Iran from planning to target America in the Middle East — at least for now. And while that possibility persists, Tehran also may have been deterred from launching strikes in the near future.

That doesn’t mean Iran will stand down forever, though.

“They probe for weakness all the time,” McKenzie told NBC News. “I would say the threat has probably evolved in certain ways even as our defensive posture has changed and become more aggressive.”

" 'Individual conscience' means that women only get contraceptives if their employers, their physicians, their pharmacists, their husbands and/or fathers, pastors, and possibly their mayors, Governors, State Secretaries of Health, Congressmen, Senators, and President all agree that in that particular case they're justifiable." --D.C. Sessions

"That's the problem with being implacable foes - no one has any incentive to treat you as anything more than an obstacle to be overcome."

"The 'Road to Serfdom' is really all right turns." --Progressive Whisperer

""The GOP ... where every accusation is also a confession." --Progressive Whisperer

#179 LFC

    Fiscal Conservative

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 27887 posts
  • LocationPennsylvania

Posted 07 June 2019 - 02:19 PM

Larison covers John Bolton's ties to an extremist terrorist group that he has pumped up as a potential replacement for the current government. Why the f*** isn't the media covering this story? This is YUUUUGGGGEEE and deadly important. Our nation faces a lot more of an immediate threat from John Bolton than it does Iran. In full:

Quote

John Limbert calls attention again to John Bolton’s relationship with the deranged cult, the Mujahideen-e Khalq (MEK):

I recently spoke about the group and its influence to a highly educated audience in Washington—graduates of three of the world’s best universities. Most of the Americans present were unaware of the MEK and its payments to the bellicose national security adviser [bold mine-DL]. All of the Iranian Americans at the meeting, however, knew the group well and detested it. They knew its murderous history in Iran: They knew that in 1979–1980 it supported Iran’s religious extremists in their campaign to silence voices calling for democracy and women’s rights; they knew it called for more executions in the early days of the revolution; they knew it fought alongside the hated Iraqis during the long and bloody Iran-Iraq war; they knew it even launched an armed invasion of Iranian territory in 1988—an invasion stopped with heavy losses.

Although the Iranian Americans present expressed no love for the brutal rulers of the Islamic Republic, they knew that an MEK-ruled Iran would be far worse.

Bolton’s long relationship with the MEK discredits everything he has to say about Iran. No one that has praised this cult as a potential replacement for the Iranian government should have anything to do with U.S. policymaking at any level, much less at the White House. No one foolish or fanatical enough to side with this cult should be entrusted with any government position.

Bolton’s ties to the MEK should be mentioned in every story that reports on him and the administration’s Iran policy, but unfortunately they are only rarely included in media coverage. It is not surprising that few people in Limbert’s audience knew about any of this, because it is so often omitted from accounts of Bolton’s career and his support for regime change in Iran. Except among people that focus on Iran policy, the rehabilitation of this creepy totalitarian group in Washington has received remarkably little attention. If the National Security Advisor of a different administration had a record of taking payments from a discredited exile group and “former” terrorist organization, you can bet that it would be a major scandal and would shortly lead to that person’s resignation. There is so much corruption and unethical behavior in this administration that Bolton’s MEK ties seem to get lost in the mix.

It is unacceptable for a top government official responsible for shaping U.S. foreign policy to have been the paid shill of this awful organization that previously killed Americans. It is wrong for an official with ties to the MEK to be influencing decisions on Iran policy. There are many reasons why Bolton should be fired, and this is right at the top of the list.

" 'Individual conscience' means that women only get contraceptives if their employers, their physicians, their pharmacists, their husbands and/or fathers, pastors, and possibly their mayors, Governors, State Secretaries of Health, Congressmen, Senators, and President all agree that in that particular case they're justifiable." --D.C. Sessions

"That's the problem with being implacable foes - no one has any incentive to treat you as anything more than an obstacle to be overcome."

"The 'Road to Serfdom' is really all right turns." --Progressive Whisperer

""The GOP ... where every accusation is also a confession." --Progressive Whisperer

#180 LFC

    Fiscal Conservative

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 27887 posts
  • LocationPennsylvania

Posted 13 June 2019 - 10:27 AM

Using any amount of brainpower it's hard to fathom why Iran would want to endanger oil shipping as it seeks to retain the support of all the partners in the nuclear deal except the U.S. There's no use case I can think of where this works to their advantage. Saudis, OTOH, have a loooonnngggg history of exporting terror and they want the U.S. to go to war with Iran for their own benefit. With Bolton having nightly wet dreams about attacking Iran, Pompeo spouting dangerous nonsense, and Trump and Jared up sale for a few measly real estate deals there's never been a better time to try. As they saw with the their 9/11 attacks and the subsequent war on Iraq which had nothing to do with them it doesn't necessarily take much. You just need a mix of aggressiveness (Bolton & Pompeo) and stupidity (Trump & Jared). Now we just wait until Bolton blames Iran for these attacks.

Quote

Two oil tankers have been rocked by explosions in the Gulf of Oman, according to reports, just one month after the U.S. blamed Iran for allegedly sabotaging four other tankers in the region.

The two tankers were allegedly hit Thursday off the coast of the United Arab Emirates—the same area where the other four tankers were supposedly targeted last month. The U.S. Navy’s Fifth Fleet confirmed it was assisting the two vessels after what it called a “reported attack,” without elaborating on the extent of the damage or the cause of the explosions.

The National—an English-language newspaper based in the UAE—identified one of the ships as the MT Front Altair. The tanker is reportedly “on fire and adrift,” but all 23 crew members are believed to have been rescued. A spokesperson for Taiwan’s state oil refiner CPC, which chartered the tanker, said it was “suspected of being hit by a torpedo.”

The second vessel has been identified as the Kokuka Courageous, which reportedly departed from the Saudi port of Al Jubail on June 10 and was on course for Singapore. The Associated Press reported that 21 sailors had been evacuated from that ship, with one suffering minor injuries.

Iranian state TV reported that the 44 survivors had been evacuated to an Iranian port, and an Iranian news agency tweeted an image of what it said was the Front Altair on fire with smoke billowing out of it.

" 'Individual conscience' means that women only get contraceptives if their employers, their physicians, their pharmacists, their husbands and/or fathers, pastors, and possibly their mayors, Governors, State Secretaries of Health, Congressmen, Senators, and President all agree that in that particular case they're justifiable." --D.C. Sessions

"That's the problem with being implacable foes - no one has any incentive to treat you as anything more than an obstacle to be overcome."

"The 'Road to Serfdom' is really all right turns." --Progressive Whisperer

""The GOP ... where every accusation is also a confession." --Progressive Whisperer





1 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 1 guests, 0 anonymous users