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.
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.
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.
Pete Buttigieg@PeteButtigiegInnocent 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.
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.
Trump is a know-nothing President simply following plans laid down since the 80s after the 6 day war. No country in the Middle East was allowed to establish an Army let alone a number of Arabic and Muslim States and so the demise of Libya, Iraq Syria and Iran were laid out years ago by Israel and the US acting as it’s proxy their reward oil and global dominance. The greatest threat to that plan today is Renewable and clean energy. (ODT)
And there is no end in sight with Donald Trump now tweeting furiously that if the Iranian government seeks to retaliate for Soleimani the U.S. will strike 52 targets inside Iran, including cultural sites, a war crime. Congress will do nothing to stop the carnage because it is just as completely controlled by the Israel Lobby as is the White House.
The blood of the Americans, Iranians and Iraqis who will die in the next few weeks is clearly on Donald Trump’s hands as this war was never inevitable and serves no U.S. national interest. It will surely turn out to be a debacle, as well as devastating for all parties involved. And it might well, on top of Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria and Libya, be the long-awaited beginning of the end of America’s imperial ambitions. Trump has had three years to learn the lesson gleaned from Iraq and Afghanistan. He obviously used that time to learn nothing.
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.
The United States, like Israel, has become a pariah that shreds, violates or absents itself from international law. We launch preemptive wars, which under international law is defined as a “crime of aggression,” based on fabricated evidence. We, as citizens, must hold our government accountable for these crimes.
via War With Iran
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.
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.
The Banner is wrong it should be Morrison confirms America is to send Australian Troops Planes and Warships to Iran (ODT)
In Australia’s Interest to Know(ODT)
Trump tore up the deal with Iran and is now insisting they did it (ODT)
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.
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.
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.
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.
blog June 17, 2019 4:57 PM EDT
- Fox both serves as Trump’s personal propaganda outlet and shapes his worldview. The president regularly watches hours of Fox coverage and often tweets about segments that catch his eye. He has stocked his administration with former Fox personalities, the network’s most prominent figures serve as his outside advisers, and guests openly appeal to him during their on-air appearances. Fox segments have an immense influence over this White House, with the president acting based on what he sees on the network on everything from political strategy to pardons.
- It remains unclear how the conflict between the U.S. and Iran will play out. But with the stakes this high, it’s unnerving that the president is wallowing in Fox’s spin.
video June 17, 2019 1:00 PM EDT
Despite no credible evidence suggesting Iranian responsibility for Thursday’s Gulf of Oman attacks or earlier regional ones in May, US establishment side with the Trump regime’s Big Lies against the country — what they always do against its adversaries.
They vilified Julian Assange, supporting his prosecution if handed over to Trump regime hardliners for the “crime” of truth-telling journalism the way it should be, ignoring their war on speech, media and academic freedoms, eroding en route to disappearing altogether along with other fundamental rights if strong action isn’t taken to halt Washington’s tyrannical agenda.
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.
Andrew Bolt’s Blog 9/5/19; America and Israel plan for WAR ; 1)To prevent any Pan Arabic Union of armed state resistence. 2)To control oil and its wealth creation for that purpose 3) Israel’s politicians are pursuing their expansionist colonisation of Palestinian territories as if John Bolton’s plan was in order.4)The Bolton Plan rid the ME of any Palestinian State.
It’s crime to interfere with the sovereignty of America but not America interfering with other nations. (ODT)
I’m of a generation where the idea of the UN Security Council meeting without the US is hard to imagine. The conference is eloquent about how isolated and increasingly irrelevant Trump has made America. The rest of the world now sees Washington as an annoying problem to get around.
Moreover, think of it. This meeting involves three of America’s closest military and economic allies–Britain, France and Germany– having been pushed by Trump into the same corner with Russia and China in seeking to have better relations with Iran. I guess Trump has taught *them* a lesson.
Trump is ordering the US Department of the Treasury to slap third party sanctions on non-US firms who do business with Iran. Companies like Total, S.A., the French oil giant, who do business with the US, cannot afford to buck the Treasury Department and so are pulling out of planned Iran investments.
Mr. Fish / Truthdig
NEW YORK—Seventeen years of war in the Middle East and what do we have to show for it? Iraq after our 2003 invasion and occupation is no longer a unified country. Its once modern infrastructure is largely destroyed, and the nation has fractured into warring enclaves. We have lost the war in Afghanistan. The Taliban is resurgent and has a presence in over 70 percent of the country. Libya is a failed state. Yemen after three years of relentless airstrikes and a blockade is enduring one of the world’s worst humanitarian disasters. The 500 “moderate” rebels we funded and armed in Syria at a cost of $500 million are in retreat after instigating a lawless reign of terror. The military adventurism has cost a staggering $5.6 trillion as our infrastructure crumbles, austerity guts basic services and half the population of the United States lives at or near poverty levels. The endless wars in the Middle East are the biggest strategic blunder in American history and herald the death of the empire.
India’s External Affairs Minister, Sushma Swaraj, on Monday did not mince words in delivering a sharp rebuke to US plans for sanctions on trade with Iran, including National Security Adviser John Bolton’s threats against third parties like India. She said, according to The Hindu,
“Our foreign policy is not made under pressure from other countries . . . We recognise UN sanctions and not country-specific sanctions. We didn’t follow U.S. sanctions on previous occasions either.”
It’s important to understand that the JCPOA is not just an agreement between the US and Iran, but one negotiated alongside our partners in the P5+1 – the UK, France, China, Russia and Germany – and endorsed by the United Nations security council. Trump’s withdrawal further deepens tensions with our most important democratic allies, France, the UK and Germany, who all continue to support the agreement and have consistently said that it is in their own national security interests to see it upheld.
Trump also rejected the advice of his own top national security officials like the joint chiefs chairman, Gen Joseph Dunford, and defense secretary, James Mattis, both of whom have repeatedly stated that staying in the agreement is in the national security interests of the US. Nuclear non-proliferation and national security professionals around the world share that assessment. Just as he has done on the issue of climate change with his withdrawal from the Paris climate accord, Trump has chosen to ignore the overwhelming expert consensus and sided instead with a small ideological faction, with disastrous consequences for our global security.
If you are living in Israel, these days, you get the impression that the huge State of Israel is dictating to its American vassal what to do about Iran.
President Donald Trump listens and complies. Bibi the Great tells him to tear up the Iranian deal for no obvious reason, and he obeys. He has no choice, poor man
According to the Israeli narrative, the timeline of violence that resulted in Syria shooting down an Israeli fighter jet began just a few hours earlier. But Israel has been bombing inside Syria for months.
What Israel and the West don’t want you to know
Iran boasts the largest Jewish community in the Middle East outside Israel with a population of more than 8,700. Despite tensions between Israel and Iran, Jews claim to feel safer there than they would in the US or EU.
“The Jews of Iran can freely worship and perform the traditional rights. They face no kind of pressure. Our synagogues here are safer than in the US or in Europe. The Iranian government supports us,” Homayoun Sameyehead of the Iran Jewish Association told RT.
READ MORE: Iran FM accuses Netanyahu of ‘fake history’ over ‘Persians tried to destroy Jews’ comments
Decades after the exodus which followed the 1979 Islamic Revolution, Iran’s is the only growing Jewish community in any predominantly Muslim country. The country boasts 65 synagogues, a 100-bed Jewish hospital and a Jewish cemetery established in 1933, while Tehran has a Jewish library with 20,000 texts, and an abundance of kosher restaurants.