Paul Craig Roberts looks at Israel’s deeds, past and present. From Roberts at paulcraigroberts.org:
52nd Anniversary of Israel’s Attack on the USS Liberty
Israel Is a Dictatorship, Not a Democracy
Two days ago the US celebrated the 75th anniversary of D-Day with accolades to the armed forces and thanks to surviving veterans. The country stood strongly with the military. But today two days later is the 52nd anniversary of a day of shame when Washington turned its back on the US Navy. It was June 8, 1967 when the USS Liberty, a surveillance ship stationed off the coast of Egypt was attacked by Israeli fighter aircraft and torpedo boats. The Israelis were unable to sink the Liberty, but managed to kill 34 American sailors and wound 174. Seventy percent of the crew were casualties of the Israeli attack.
The White House, fearing the Israel Lobby, prevented the US Navy from going to the defense of the Liberty, thus sacrificing American lives, and further dishonored the US Navy by ordering Admiral McCain, father of the former US Senator John McCain, to orchestrate a cover-up. The surviving crew were threatened with court-martial and imprisonment if they spoke about the event. It was 20 years before one of the surviving officers wrote a book about the greatest act of shame the US government ever inflicted on the US military.
In 2003, 36 years after the Israeli attack on the Liberty, Admiral Tom Moorer, former Chief of Naval Operations and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, convened the Independent Commission of Inquiry into the Israeli Attack on USS Liberty, the Recall of Military Rescue Support Aircraft while the Liberty was Under Attack, and the Subsequent Cover-up by the United States Government. The Commission consisted of Adm. Moorer, Gen. Raymond Davis, former Assistant Commandant of the US Marine Corps, Rear Adm. Merlin Staring, former Judge Advocate General of the US Navy, and Amb. James Akins, former US Ambassador to Saudi Arabia.
You can read the report online, here for example: https://en.wikisource.org/wiki/The_Moorer_Report
Russia, the US’s supposed mortal enemy, would be a big winner if the US went to war with Iran. That isn’t stopping any of the usual suspects from pushing for war with Iran. From Whitney Webb at mintpressnew.com:
While Russia often serves as a useful “boogeyman” for promoting militaristic policies, the odd moments when those same policies actually benefit Russia and avoid strong opposition from U.S. politicians and media provide a rare glimpse into the real motivations behind Cold War 2.0.
In early May, MSNBC news host Rachel Maddow — known as one of the top promoters of the new Cold War and Russiagate in American media — emphatically endorsed regime change in Venezuela after she claimed that President Donald Trump’s hawkishness towards the South American country had changed, all because of a single phone call with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin.
Though Maddow’s claims were arguably the most extreme in suggesting that Trump was “taking orders” from Putin on Venezuela, she wasn’t alone in making them. For instance, Cenk Uygur of the Young Turks also made the claim that the Trump-Putin phone call on Venezuela was “direct evidence that he is literally taking orders from Putin.” In addition, several corporate media outlets supported this narrative by suggesting that Trump “echoed” Putin’s Venezuela stance after the phone call and directly contradicted his top staffers and even himself in doing so.
Yet now, strangely, those same corporate media voices remain silent on the Trump administration’s other regime-change project — in Iran — despite the fact that the Putin-led Russian government is set to be the biggest winner as tensions between the U.S. and the Islamic Republic boil over and threaten to send the Middle East into a fresh bout of destruction and chaos.
The first sentence is the money sentence. From Paul Craig Roberts at paulcraigroberts.com:
Trump destroyed his chance at being a successful president by the stupid appointments he has made. At the moment he is being set up by his national security advisor John Bolton and Israel for a war with Iran.
Using the same format of lies that was used against Iraq, Libya, Syria, and Venezuela, Bolton has accused Iran of “troubling and escalatory indications” of a forthcoming Iranian attack on American forces in the Middle East. To help protect against the attack, Bolton has ordered Patriot missile batteries, an aircraft carrier strike group, and a bomber strike force to the region.
Even the Israeli newspaper, Haaretz, pointed out that Bolton failed to identify the “troubling and escalatory” Iranian actions. https://www.haaretz.com/us-news/u-s-sends-patriot-missiles-to-the-middle-east-to-counter-iranian-threats-1.7221997 No one else has seen any sign of them.
The reason for the Patriot missiles is not to deter Iran from an attack, but to prevent successful Iranian response to an attack on Iran.
Not too long ago there were stories about a Trump-Putin “bromance.” If you’re looking for a bromance, how about Trump-Netanyahu, with Netanyahu clearly the dominant one? From Phyllis Bennis at antiwar.com:
For Israelis, the questions had been hovering for months.
Would the right-wing Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu claim victory and a fifth term, moving his far-right Likud government coalition even further right? Or would the supposedly “centrist” challenger, former army chief of staff General Benny Gantz, ride to victory among corruption allegations against Netanyahu?
Netanyahu faces three – and potentially as many as five – separate indictments for various scandals. If his Likud party forms the new government, which now seems likely, will it pass a new law prohibiting the indictment of a sitting prime minister?
Those questions remain central to Israeli political discussion. But among Palestinians, there was little need to ask about what the election meant for them: Whatever government emerged seemed guaranteed to maintain current Israeli positions in support of occupation and apartheid, against international law, for war with Iran, for full-throated alliance with the US president and US military aid, and against human rights for Palestinians and equality for all.
During the campaign, Netanyahu not only vowed to annex illegal Israeli West Banks settlements in violation of international law, but also expressly disavowed the state of Israel’s obligations to its Palestinian citizens. Yet his challenger Gantz was little better, running ads bragging about how many Palestinians he killed bombing Gaza “back to the stone age” while commanding Israel’s 2014 military assault on Gaza.
Israel calls the shots for the US in the Middle East. From Patrick J. Buchanan at buchanan.org:
On Monday, President Donald Trump designated the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps a terrorist organization, the first time the United States has designated part of another nation’s government as such a threat.
Iran’s Supreme National Security Council responded by declaring U.S. Central Command a terrorist group.
With 5,000 U.S. troops in Iraq and 2,000 in Syria, often in proximity to Iranian units, this inches America closer to war.
Why did we do it? What benefit did the U.S. derive?
How do we now negotiate with the IRGC on missile tests?
Israel’s Bibi Netanyahu took credit for Trump’s decision, tweeting, “Once again you are keeping the world safe from Iran aggression and terrorism. … Thank you for accepting another important request of mine.”
Previous “requests” to which Trump acceded include moving the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem, declaring Jerusalem Israel’s eternal capital, closing the Palestinian consulate and cutting off aid, and U.S. recognition of the Golan Heights, captured from Syria in 1967, as sovereign Israeli territory.
What Bibi wants, Bibi gets.
Syria may not have to, and may not, sit still for Israel’s bombs any longer. From Elijah J. Magnier at ejmagnier.com:
Israel has attacked Syria many times during the last seven years of war imposed on Syria. It has run red-lights and broken taboos in order to provoke the “Axis of the Resistance” inside Syria, but has refrained from infuriating Hezbollah in Lebanon. Nevertheless, the most recent Israeli attack has pushed Syria and its allies beyond tolerable limits. Thus, President Assad prepared himself for a battle against Israel between the wars, knowing that such a battle could last weeks. But the president of Syria won’t be alone: Assad and Hezbollah’s Secretary general Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah will both be running any future battle against any Israeli aggression when the decision to engage will be taken.
Most recently Israel bombed the Syrian army and destroyed the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) offices and bases in Syria without inflicting any human casualties. At the same time, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu put himself on the level of IRGC-Quds brigade General Qassem Soleimani, by challenging him on social media. In fact, Netanyahu fell right into the trap the Iranian general set for President Donald Trump.
Posted in Foreign Policy, Geopolitics, Governments, History, Military, Politics, War
Tagged Bashar al-Assad, Benjamin Netanyahu, Iran, Israel, Russia, Syria
Does President Trump have sufficient testicular material to get the Syria pullout done? From Gareth Porter at theamericanconservative.com:
They worked hard only to have their plans scuttled. But don’t expect them to stop the pressure.
The Pentagon was not the only party pressing Donald Trump to keep troops in Syria last year. It turns out the Israeli government and its supporters in Washington were working very hard to get the Trump administration to use America’s military presence there to support an Israeli campaign of airstrikes aimed at threatening war with Iran.
The Israeli strategy was aimed at dividing Russia from Iran and thus putting pressure on Tehran to withdraw its military personnel from Syria. A campaign by a pro-Israel think tank actually succeeded in getting such a policy ready for Trump’s approval last fall—although it was not supported by some Pentagon officials.
The story of the Israel lobby’s latest attempt to capture American policy, recounted here for the first time, reveals just how far Israel was able to reach into the Trump administration before the president personally intervened.