New extreme-right Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett came out on Sunday to argue that the election of an extreme-right Iranian cleric (Ebrahim Raisi) as president of that country should cause the Biden administration to back off reviving the 2015 Iran nuclear deal. Bennett called Raisi the “hangman of Tehran” and said, “of all the people that (Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali) Khamenei could have chosen, he chose the hangman of Tehran, the man infamous among Iranians and across the world for leading the death committees that executed thousands of innocent Iranian citizens throughout the years.”
Source: Far Right Israeli PM Bennett slams Iran Nuclear Talks for Tehran’s Poor Rights Record (Israel has 200 Nukes and has Killed Thousands of Occupied Palestinians)
This entire act of gross miscalculation did its fair share of harm, though not in the sense understood by Pompeo and his officials. It spoke to a clumsy unilateralism masquerading as credible support; to great power obstinacy misguided in attaining a goal. It was not the UN Security Council that had failed, but the US that had failed it, an effort that many at the UN are reading as directed at torching the remnants of the Iran nuclear deal. The assessment of the US effort by former UN weapons inspector Scott Ritter was sharp and relevant. “You got the Dominican Republic on board (how much did that cost the US taxpayer?) Not a single other nation voted with you! The shining city on the hill has been reduced to a glow, like the embers of a dying fire.”
via Foiled in the Security Council: The United States, Extending Arms Embargoes and Iran – » The Australian Independent Media Network
Trump’s donor and election war aganst Iran (ODT)
The point is that the U.S. and the Israelis are intent on going to war against enemy number one Iran and are packaging their actions in such away as to suggest that they are really behaving in a moderate fashion. They are assuming that Iran will retaliate, but in such a way as to avoid intensifying the conflict. In reality, taking action to destroy a nation’s economy is an act of war just as much as is staging attacks using bombs carried by spies or using missiles fired from planes. There is already a war going on, but the smokescreen provided by the coronavirus spread and BLM means that no one seems to want more on their plate and there is great reluctance to call it for what it is.
via Turmoil at Home, Turmoil Abroad: Israel and the U.S. Escalate Their War Against Iran, by Philip Giraldi – The Unz Review
Couple Trump’s Kim Jong-un Style mine’s bigger than your’s threat with the clowns that lie on his behalf and you have Dr Strangelove being played out before your very eyes. HE’S YOUR PRESIDENT AMERICA. (ODT)
via ‘Unreliable for allies, dangerous for rivals’: Tehran blasts ‘mindless’ trio of Trump, Pompeo & US Iran envoy — RT World News
Reuters reports that the death toll in Iran from Covid-19 has risen to 1,284, and infections to 18,407. The country’s ministry of health spokesman, Kianush Jahanpur, is quoted as saying that another person dies there every 10 minutes now and every hour sees 50 people infected.
Researchers at Sharif University of Technology have modeled likely deaths and say Iran could be stricken with as many as 3.5 million dead.
Trump’s secretary of state Mike Pompeo just announced that the US would actually tighten its economic and financial blockade on Iran. Iranians are already saying that US Treasury Department restrictions on bank transfers have made it impossible for them to buy needed medicines, tests and medical supplies. The US does not prevent medicine from going to Iran, it just makes it impossible for Iranians to afford them or for the international banking system to handle the money exchanges necessary to buy them.
via Trump Spared Iran from Bombing, but his Sanctions Fed Pandemic in which 1 dies every 10 Minutes
During recent increased US-Iran confrontation, so many people viewed the Selective Service website to find out about the draft that the website crashed. People were right to be concerned about a return of the draft.
via Is the Draft Coming Back?, by Ron Paul – The Unz Review
Trump launched a reckless criminal act of state terror designed to provoke a war. Iran de-escalated the situation as of Wednesday — refusing to engage in a retaliatory cycle of violent escalation while demonstrating their military capability. Trump responded with a rambling, lifeless, incoherent slurred speech that promised to ratchet up economic sanctions without threatening further violence.
via War Criminal in the White House
Innocent civilians are now dead because they were caught in the middle of an unnecessary and unwanted military tit for tat. My thoughts are with the families and loved ones of all 176 souls lost aboard this flight.
The consequence of Trump’s recklessness
A total of 176 people were killed when a Ukrainian passenger plane came down soon after taking off from Tehran in the hours after the missile strike.
Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has revealed intelligence that suggests it was shot out of the sky by Iran. Prime Minister Scott Morrison said the Australians have the same intelligence.
“The evidence indicates that the plane was shot down by an Iranian surface-to-air missile,” Mr Trudeau said. “This may well have been unintentional.”
Iran was on a war footing in the hours after launching its ballistic missiles and would have been prepared for an American response from the air.
All indications point to a tragic mistake.
It won’t take long for critics to point the finger of blame at Mr Trump himself.
Even before Mr Trudeau’s press conference, Democratic presidential hopeful Pete Buttigieg, who served for the US military in Afghanistan, implied the President should carry responsibility.
“Innocent civilians are now dead because they were caught in the middle of an unnecessary and unwanted military tit for tat” he tweeted.
Donald Trump’s ‘suspicions’ about the plane crash are just one of the remaining flashpoints between the US and Iran – Analysis & Opinion – ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)
A personal comment in response to the Trump regime’s assassination of redoubtable Iranian General Qassem Soleimani, a national hero now martyred by US imperial rage.
He represented Iranian resilience and resistance against US state-terrorism, its endless wars of aggression, its rage for global control by brute force — responsible for countless millions of deaths, vast destruction, and human misery globally.
The nation I grew up in long ago no longer exists. Never beautiful, it was world’s apart from today’s permanent US state of war on humanity at home and abroad.
via Stupid Is As Stupid Does Defines the Trump Regime’s Foreign Policy – Stephen Lendman
With the release by JustSecurity.org of unredacted emails on the Ukraine scandal showing that Trump personally (and illegally) withheld congressionally mandated military aid to an ally, the Republican defense of the president is collapsing. Some GOP senators such as Susan Collins and Lisa Murkowski seem to be weakening on calling witnesses and subpoenaing records for the Senate trial, and the Democrats only need four Republican senators to ensure a proper proceeding, which would certainly put Trump’s presidency in peril.
It is extremely suspicious that Trump has abruptly begun trafficking in the sanguinary merchandise of all-out war just at this moment when his throne is on the brink of toppling.
via The Real Reason Trump Assassinated Qassem Soleimani
The Israeli prime minister Binyamin Netanyahu is one of the world players who pushed Trump to breach the 2015 treaty with Iran. Trump then slapped the severest economic sanctions on Iran ever imposed on any country in the absence of war. Trump went around the world menacing other countries into ceasing to buy Iranian petroleum and threatening billions in fines against any company anywhere in the world that invested in or traded with Iran.
Instead, Netanyahu and Trump have pushed Iran straight into the arms of China which is investing $400 billion in the country and which is now taking most of Iran’s oil exports. China seems intent on integrating Iran into its economy even more robustly than it had proposed with Pakistan.
via Israeli PM Netanyahu’s Himalayan Miscalculation on Iran: Bringing China into the Mideast
The Banner is wrong it should be Morrison confirms America is to send Australian Troops Planes and Warships to Iran (ODT)
via Scott Morrison confirms Australia to join US protection of oil tankers in Straits of Hormuz
Conservatives take us to Wars the ALP takes us out of them. SOS Save OUR SONS (ODT)
Australia must think through its interests and principles with the U.S. before taking part in an attack in Iran, writes former executive chairman of UNSCOM, the UN Special Commission to disarm Iraq, Richard Butler.
Australia is likely to be drawn into U.S. hostilities with Iran
Here’s a word of advice to Prime Minister Scott Morrison. Unless he wants to risk a smudge on his reputation of the sort that accompanies John Howard to this day: don’t get involved in conflict with Iran beyond limited naval engagement in a Gulf peace-keeping role.
via Acting on Iran has painful shades of joining the US in Iraq
For years, Israel maintained close political, economic, and security relations with the Shah of Iran. Newly-declassified documents reveal that Israeli leaders were well aware of his murderous suppression of political opponents.
via The unwritten history of Israel’s alliance with the Shah’s dictatorship | +972 Magazine
Trump administration appear intent on war against Iran. This week on Intercepted: As the U.S. accuses Iran of attacking civilian ships while offering scant evidence, grave historical parallels are emerging with the Gulf of Tonkin incidents in 1964 that were manipulated to justify Lyndon Johnson’s dramatic escalation of the war in Vietnam. California Democrat Rep. Ro Khanna is preparing legislation aimed at stopping an attack on Iran, and he says he would not put it past national security adviser John Bolton to manipulate evidence. Journalist Negar Mortazavi of The Independent analyzes what war with Iran would look like and exposes the State Department’s funding of propaganda operations against Iran. Democracy Now! host Amy Goodman talks about the parallels with the build up to the Iraq invasion of 2003 and shares stories from her early life as a journalist.
via Donald Trump, Iran, and the Gulf of Tonkin Redux
The Trump administration’s sudden march toward an armed conflict with Iran has a number of top Democrats and even some Republicans attempting to rein in the president’s hawkish senior officials before potentially tens of thousands of U.S. troops are once again engaged in a bloody conflict in the Middle East.
Sens. Tom Udall (D-N.M.), Richard Durbin (D-Ill.) and Rand Paul (R-Ky.) have renewed a push for a 2018 bill that would prohibit the U.S. from using funds for a war against Iran without first getting congressional approval. On Tuesday, Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) joined the bill as a co-sponsor.
“We cannot let the Trump Admin drag us into yet another war in the Middle East,” Warren tweeted.
via Can Congress Steer The U.S. Away From War With Iran? | HuffPost Australia