Tag Archives: Iran

US Admits Yemen’s Houthis Aren’t an Iranian Proxy as the Death Toll Climbs, by Joziah Thayer

By now it’s an article of faith that Yemen’s Houthis are Iranian proxies, but that’s more a convenient fiction to justify the US’s efforts to help Saudi Arabia in its war against the Houthis. From Joziah Thayer at antiwar.com:

The death toll in Yemen has reached 102,000 according to data released by the Armed Conflict Location & Event Data Project in October of 2019. Since the war started in 2015, the United States government has maintained one steadfast talking point. The Houthis are an Iranian proxy in Yemen. Government officials and those in mainstream media have repeatedly regurgitated this talking point without ever providing evidence to back up this claim.

By repeatedly claiming that the Houthis are an Iranian proxy, it allows the United States government to try and justify what is happening in Yemen daily. All the United States has to do whenever a government official has to answer a question about the war in Yemen, is mention Iran. No matter how undefendable America’s involvement in the war in Yemen has become the excuse to justify the atrocities in Yemen never falter, its Iran’s fault.

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THE ANGRY ARAB: US Violated Unspoken Rule of Engagement with Iran, by As’ad AbuKhalil

What sort of reprisals will the assassination of Qassem Soleimani lead to by Iran? From As’ad AbuKhalil at consortiumnews.com:

As’ad AbuKhalil analyzes the Trump administration’s decision to escalate hostilities with Iran and its regional allies.   

U.S. paratroopers deploy to the Middle East following the Baghdad airstrike, Jan. 4, 2020.(U.S. Army/Hubert Delany, Wikimedia Commons)

Something big and unprecedented has happened in the Middle East after the assassination of one of Iran’s top commanders, Qasim Suleimani.

The U.S. has long assumed that assassinations of major figures in the Iranian “resistance-axis” in the Middle East would bring risk to the U.S. military-intelligence presence in the Middle East.  Western and Arab media reported that the U.S. had prevented Israel in the past from killing Suleimani.  But with the top commander’s death, the Trump administration seems to think a key barrier to U.S. military operations in the Middle East has been removed.

The U.S. and Israel had noticed that Hizbullah and Iran did not retaliate against previous assassinations by Israel (or the U.S.) that took place in Syria (of Imad Mughniyyah, Jihad Mughniyyah, Samir Quntar); or for other attacks on Palestinian and Lebanese commanders in Syria.

The U.S. thus assumed that this assassination would not bring repercussions or harm to U.S. interests. Iranian reluctance to retaliate has only increased the willingness of Israel and the U.S. to violate the unspoken rules of engagement with Iran in the Arab East.

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The End of U.S. Military Dominance: Unintended Consequences Forge a Multipolar World Order, by Federico Pieraccini

Many of the factors responsible for the fading of US military dominance are directly attributable to US actions and policy. From Federico Pieraccini at strategic-culture.org:

Starting from the presidency of George W. Bush to that of Trump, the U.S. has made some missteps that not only reduce its influence in strategic regions of the world but also its ability to project power and thus impose its will on those unwilling to genuflect appropriately.

Some examples from the recent past will suffice to show how a series of strategic errors have only accelerated the U.S.’s hegemonic decline.

ABM + INF = Hypersonic Supremacy

The decision to invade Afghanistan following the events of September 11, 2001, while declaring an “axis of evil” to be confronted that included nuclear-armed North Korea and budding regional hegemon Iran, can be said to be the reason for many of the most significant strategic problems besetting the U.S..

The U.S. often prefers to disguise its medium- to long-term objectives by focusing on supposedly more immediate and short-term threats. Thus, the U.S.’s withdrawal from the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty (ABM Treaty) and its deployment of the Aegis Combat System (both sea- and land-based) as part of the NATO missile defense system, was explained as being for the purposes of defending European allies from the threat of Iranian ballistic missiles. This argument held little water as the Iranians had neither the capability nor intent to launch such missiles.

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A New Definition of Warfare, by Philip Giraldi

Are sanctions war by another means? From Philip Giraldi at unz.com:

Supporters of Donald Trump often make the point that he has not started any new wars. One might observe that it has not been for lack of trying, as his cruise missile attacks on Syria based on fabricated evidence and his recent assassination of Iranian general Qassem Soleimani have been indisputably acts of war. Trump also has enhanced troop levels both in the Middle East and in Afghanistan while also increasing the frequency and lethality of armed drone attacks worldwide.

Congress has been somewhat unseriously toying around with a tightening of the war powers act of 1973 to make it more difficult for a president to carry out acts of war without any deliberation by or authorization from the legislature. But perhaps the definition of war itself should be expanded. The one area where Trump and his team of narcissistic sociopaths have been most active has been in the imposition of sanctions with lethal intent. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has been explicit in his explanations that the assertion of “extreme pressure” on countries like Iran and Venezuela is intended to make the people suffer to such an extent that they rise up against their governments and bring about “regime change.” In Pompeo’s twisted reckoning that is how places that Washington disapproves of will again become “normal countries.”

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The Latest & Most Reckless US Imperial Act, by Patrick Lawrence

Killing a general of a country with which you are not at war is criminal under international law. From Patrick Lawrence at consortiumnews.com:

Following the U.S. assassination of Soleimani, the Trump administration is leading American conduct abroad into a zone of probably unprecedented lawlessness.

Of all the preposterous assertions made since the drone assassination of Qassem Soleimani in Baghdad on Jan. 3, the prize for bottomless ignorance must go to the bottomlessly ignorant Mike Pompeo.

Speaking after the influential Iranian general’s death, our frightening secretary of state declaimed on CBS’s Face the Nation, “There was sound and just and legal reason for the actions the President took, and the world is safer as a result.”  In appearances on five news programs on the same Sunday morning, the evangelical paranoid who now runs American foreign policy was a singer with a one-note tune.  “It’s very clear the world’s a safer place today,” Pompeo said on ABC’s Jan. 5 edition of This Week.

In our late-imperial phase, we seem to have reached that moment when, whatever high officials say in matters of the empire’s foreign policy, we must consider whether the opposite is in fact the case. So we have it now.

We are not safer now that Soleimani, a revered figure across much of the Middle East, has been murdered. The planet has just become significantly more dangerous, especially but not only for Americans, and this is so for one simple reason: The Trump administration, Pompeo bearing the standard, has just tipped American conduct abroad into a zone of probably unprecedented lawlessness, Pompeo’s nonsensical claim to legality notwithstanding.

This is a very consequential line to cross.

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Iran Counters EU Threat Of Snapback Sanctions, by Moon of Alabama

There is no chance the Trump administration will get what it wants from Iran. From Moon of Alabama at moonofalabama.org:

U.S. President Donald Trump wants to destroy the nuclear agreement with Iran. He has threatened the EU-3 poodles in Germany, Britain and France with a 25% tariff on their car exports to the U.S. unless they end their role in the JCPOA deal.

In their usual gutlessness the Europeans gave in to the blackmail. They triggered the Dispute Resolution Mechanism of the deal. The mechanism foresees two 15 day periods of negotiations and a five day decision period after which any of the involved countries can escalate the issues to the UN Security Council. The reference to the UNSC would then lead to an automatic reactivation or “snapback” of those UN sanction against Iran that existed before the nuclear deal was signed.

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Doug Casey: Tensions With Iran Can’t End Well

Doug Casey sees nothing but trouble stemming from the assassination of Qassem Soleimani. From Casey at caseyresearch.com:

Chris’ note: Today, we have a brand-new Conversations With Casey for you.

As you know, the US killed Iran’s top general, Qassem Soleimani, on the orders of President Trump earlier this month. And now, many people are wondering what’s next.

I wanted to get our founder Doug Casey’s thoughts on this major news. As usual, Doug didn’t hold anything back.

Below, Doug tells me why this is further proof that Trump has no philosophical core… why the US has turned into a rogue bully… how Iran might retaliate next… and much, much more.


Chris Reilly, managing editor, Casey Daily Dispatch: Doug, as you know, the US killed Iran’s top general, Qassem Soleimani, on the orders of President Trump. The story continues to dominate the news. And everyone’s wondering what’s next.

I’ll ask you about that in a moment. But first, I’d like to know what your initial thoughts were when you heard the news…

Doug Casey, founder, Casey Research: I think it’s proof that Trump is psychologically unstable.

As you may know, I’ve always had mixed feelings about Trump. I’m pro-Trump insofar as he’s a cultural traditionalist. He’s anti-politically correct, and that’s why he has the support of Middle America. And he’s reduced regulation in a number of areas, which is great. But Trump has absolutely no philosophical core. He flies entirely by the seat of his pants.

He’s completely unpredictable, and he seems to see his unpredictability as a virtue when it comes to negotiating. It’s not. Unpredictability is a virtue when you’re playing poker – but poker is a win-lose game. In real life, unpredictability equals unreliability and untrustworthiness. It’s a sign of someone without ethics, without a moral core. It tells people that you’re trying to “play” them, to “game” them.

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