Are we trying to pull out of the Middle East or get more deeply involved? From Patrick J. Buchanan at buchanan.org:
“Jaw-jaw is better than war-war,” is attributed, wrongly, say some historians, to Winston Churchill. Still, the words lately came to mind.
While last week ended with a hopeful U.S.-Iranian prisoner exchange that was hailed by President Donald Trump — “Thank you to Iran for a very fair negotiation. See, we can make a deal together” — a few days earlier, the week produced more ominous news.
In a startling front-page story Wednesday, The Wall Street Journal reported that the U.S. is to send 14,000 troops to the Middle East, in addition to the 14,000 we have sent since May.
The reason for the reinforcements, said the Journal, is Iran.
“The Trump administration is considering a significant expansion of the U.S. military footprint in the Middle East to counter Iran, including dozens more ships … and as many as 14,000 additional troops.”
Posted in Politics, Foreign Policy, War, History, Military, Economy, Energy, Governments, Geopolitics
Tagged Iran, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Houthis, Middle East wars
Nobody has been a bigger beneficiary of the US’s Middle East misadventures than Iran. From Philip Giraldi at strategic-culture.org:
Intelligence documents reveal how Tehran took advantage of US blundering
The American invasion of Iraq and the overthrow of that nation’s government in 2003 has rightly been described as the greatest foreign policy disaster in the history of the United States. Eight thousand one hundred and seventy five American soldiers, contractors and civilians have died in Iraq since 2003 as well as an estimated 300,000 Iraqis. By some more expansive estimates the so-called “global war on terror,” of which Iraq was the major component, may have directly killed 801,000, of which at least 335,000 were civilians. Other estimates indicate that the total dead from collateral causes, to include disease and starvation, could exceed 3 million, overwhelmingly Muslims.
The wars in Afghanistan and Iraq alone have also cost, according to the same Brown University study, an estimated $6.4 trillion and still counting as the money to pay for it was borrowed.
Posted in Debt, Economy, Foreign Policy, Geopolitics, Governments, History, Military, Politics, War
Tagged Iran, Iraq, Middle East, President Trump, Syria
War is a time-honored tactic for leaders to distract the led from their shortcomings at home. From Finian Cunningham at strategic-culture.org:
It seems more than coincidence that as the legal noose tightens around Prime Minister Benjamin “Bibi” Netanyahu, Israeli military have suddenly stepped up air strikes on Iranian forces based in Syria.
Playing the strongman role on national security and winning another term as prime minister would stave off prosecution over pending corruptioncharges.
If Netanyahu is ousted from office he will be immediately subjected to trial. A subsequent conviction on all charges could result in him facing up to 13 years in jail. A lot is at stake for Israel’s elder statesmen. At 70 years old, he is the longest-serving prime minister in the history of the Israeli state, having been elected four times already.
Therefore the longer he can hang on as premier, the longer he can postpone his day in court, as the leadership position affords a certain immunity while in office.
Who’s betrayed their country?
A dictionary definition of asset is: a useful or valuable thing, person, or quality. The word has been much in the news lately. Usually coupled with “Russian,” it’s a favorite smear of establishment stalwarts like Hillary Clinton and establishment media like The New York Times. It’s been directed against President Trump, Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard, and others who question the US’s interventionist foreign and military policies.
By implication, anyone who is an asset of a foreign country places the interests of that foreign country ahead of their own country’s. The term is especially odious when appended to a country commonly considered an enemy. Examining US foreign and military policy the last several decades, an unasked question is: to whom or what has that policy been “useful or valuable”? Establishment attacks on Trump and Gabbard serve to clarify who has actually been assets for unfriendly governments, and it’s not Trump or Gabbard.
At the end of WWII, the US was at the apex of its power and no nation could directly challenge it. After the Soviet Union detonated its first atomic bomb in 1949, the two countries settled into the Cold War stalemate that lasted until the Soviet Union’s dissolution in 1991. Actual use of nuclear weapons was considered potentially catastrophic, to be avoided by either side except to counter a nuclear strike—either preemptively or after the fact—by the other side. They were not considered a battlefield weapon, although there were elements of the American military command, and probably the Soviet command as well, that at various times advanced consideration of battlefield use.
Posted in Crime, Eurasian Axis, Foreign Policy, Geopolitics, Governments, History, Imperialism, Media, Military, Politics, War
Tagged American empire, China, Iran, Russia
Vladimir Putin wants peace in the Middle East, not colonies. From Tom Luongo at tomluongo.me:
Peace in the Middle East is coming at us fast and we’re going to have Russian President Vladimir Putin to thank for it.
The howls of agony coming from U.S. and European foreign policy centers are deafening. Pat Buchanan lists them in his latest article which asks if Putin is now the new king of the Middle East.
“Donald Trump Has Handed Putin the Middle East on a Plate” was the title of a Telegraph column. “Putin Seizes on Trump’s Syria Retreat to Cement Middle East Role,” said the Financial Times.
The U.S. press parroted the British: Putin is now the new master of the Mideast. And woe is us.
Posted in Foreign Policy, Geopolitics, Governments, History, Military, War
Tagged Great Britain, Iran, Israel, President Trump, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Syrian War, Turkey, Vladimir Putin
President Trump may have finally done something right in the Middle East. From David Stockman at antiwar.com:
Just when you think the Donald has lost his marbles completely, he pulls a rabbit of rationality out of the hat of Imperial Washington’s Forever Wars madness.
We are referring, of course, to his sensible decision to decline the opportunity to put American soldiers in harms’ way in an impending showdown between Turks and Kurds on the northern border of Syria. To our recollection, that particular tribal enmity has been going on for centuries and needs no help from Washington to fester on for years to come.
But already he is being monkey-hammered by the bipartisan War Party because by standing down and removing US forces from the contested towns along the border Trump is basically sounding the death knell for the neocons’ failed, bloody, illegal and demented regime change project in Syria.
Now – and very soon – the Kurds will have to make a deal with Assad and his Russian and Iranian allies to counter Turkey’s incursion, including the creation of a “safe zone” along the Turkish border that would be off-limits to armed Kurdish forces.
Posted in Foreign Policy, Geopolitics, Government, Media, Military, Politics
Tagged Iran, Kurds, President Trump, Russia, Syrian withdrawal, Turkey
So far there has not been a word from ever voluble Mike Pompeo on this latest Middle East incident. From Tom Luongo at tomluongo.me:
“You’re gonna need a bigger boat”
Just when you thought it was safe to go back in the water someone poked a couple of holes in an oil tanker belonging to Iran. This sent oil prices up briefly in the vain hope of stabilizing them. But, strangely, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was silent.
This was a warning to Iran from someone on the Saudi/Israeli/U.S. side, “You won’t win without costs.”
Well, of course, that’s true. The big question everyone is asking is, of course, “Who did this?”
Details are sketchy with a lot of back and forth. Iran initially reported missile strikes.