June 21, 2019

"President Trump approved military strikes against Iran in retaliation for downing an American surveillance drone, but pulled back from launching them on Thursday night after a day of escalating tensions."

"As late as 7 p.m., military and diplomatic officials were expecting a strike, after intense discussions and debate at the White House among the president’s top national security officials and congressional leaders, according to multiple senior administration officials involved in or briefed on the deliberations. Officials said the president had initially approved attacks on a handful of Iranian targets, like radar and missile batteries. The operation was underway in its early stages when it was called off, a senior administration official said. Planes were in the air and ships were in position, but no missiles had been fired when word came to stand down, the official said."

MSN reports.

263 comments:

1 – 200 of 263   Newer›   Newest»
Heartless Aztec said...

If ever a nation needed an updated Kido Butai it is the Japanese. As an added plus they were particularly good at it.

rhhardin said...

Iran said no.

Humperdink said...

I suspect the current Ayatollah Rockinrolla doesn't know what to think now. Nor do his pawns manning the radar installations.

stevew said...

I bet it was stopped because PDT got assurances from the United Nations that they would speak to Iran in very, very stern tones and with strong language.

Darrell said...

Remember when the Press went on about Hillary issuing the stand down order in Benghazi that got Americans killed?

Neither do I.

Tom T. said...

Operation Keep Iran On Edge?

exhelodrvr1 said...

This puts more pressure on Iran and (ironically) the Democrats - if Iran keeps escalating, it will take away the pretense that this is the USA's fault. And the Democrats, and their co-riders in the clown car media buddies, lose the ability to pretend that Pres Trump is itching to get us into a war.

Darrell said...

See my new Iran sandglass exhibit coming soon to an art museum near you.

rehajm said...

Iran said no.

I assumed it was a Hawaiian judge.

David Begley said...

Imagine the panic in Iran when they saw the US jets coming.

Trump just faked them out.

Fernandistein said...

MSN reports.

I wonder what really happened.

Shouting Thomas said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Nichevo said...

Why is anybody talking, unless it is WH maskirova? If not, some people need to be shot in the back of the head.

David Begley said...

If Iran had s Second Amendment the mullahs would be out of power.

Darrell said...

Quoting John McCain--"Bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb, Iran . . ."

traditionalguy said...

Act 1. The world awaits Act 2. And this distraction of a war must wait.

David Begley said...

Iran has a declining GDP, high inflation and unemployment rate.

Freder Frederson said...

I expect you all to criticize Trump as harshly as you criticized Obama for moving the red line in Syria.

Yeah . . . Right!

Actually, I look forward to the mental gymnastics that allows you to differentiate the weak and feckless Obama from the decisive and brilliant Trump.

EDH said...

...according to multiple senior administration officials involved in or briefed on the deliberations. Asked about the plans for a strike and the decision to hold back, the White House declined to comment, as did Pentagon officials. No government officials asked The New York Times to withhold the article.

Okay, so they wanted this story to get out to the hostile press.

Michael D. Shear and Michael Crowley reported from Washington; Eric Schmitt from Palo Alto, Calif.; and Maggie Haberman from New York.

Yep.

The retaliation plan was intended as a response to the shooting down of the unmanned, $130 million surveillance drone

Seems exaggerated when compared to, say, the F-35.

The F-35 currently costs between $94 million (F-35A) and $122 million (F-35B) for low-rate initial production run 10...

Bushman of the Kohlrabi said...

Is this today's official media fabricated outrage? I can't tell anymore.

Limited blogger said...

Seeing more of President Trump's skillz

Tank said...

In a world full of government and media fake news there is no way to evaluate this story.

cacimbo said...

"I wonder what really happened."

Me too. The result of media's constant fake news, it is impossible to be sure what is real - especially when it comes to their Trump coverage.

CJinPA said...

I look forward to the mental gymnastics that allows you to differentiate the weak and feckless Obama from the decisive and brilliant Trump.

How about we at least make it look like we're hoping for the best outcome for the country and the region and do the political scorecard thing later? There will be plenty of time for that.

john said...

Shooting down one of our drones?

We need to retaliate and retaliate now. Start with calling Capt. William C Rogers out of retirement.

Hari said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jersey Fled said...

What Limited Blogger said.

One of the more formidable techniques of negotiation is simply to wait. Try it sometime.

Iran was prepared for an immediate military response which they could spin as rash and unjustified. Now they don't know whether to shit or go blind.

What we wanted was Iran to stop their aggressive actions in the strait. What if we get that goal by simply waiting.

Remember when you were a kid and and your mom said "wait for your father to get home". Which was worse, the punishment or the waiting.

Hari said...

Trump doesn't bomb Iran.
NYT hardest hit.
Forced to shelf upcoming "Wag the Dog" article.

Freder Frederson said...

How about we at least make it look like we're hoping for the best outcome for the country and the region and do the political scorecard thing later?

Because that is definitely not what you did when Obama moved the red line in Syria.

Quayle said...

Mastering the art of "the shoe is about to drop"?

Chuck said...

Althouse could you possibly enlist the help of your blog readership and diagram this sentence?

https://twitter.com/atrupar/status/1141686930448560130

gspencer said...

He's toying with the Shiitteheaded Muzzies.

n.n said...

Iran expected to be Gaddafied. However, Iran is not Libya, Ukraine, Syria, etc. Your move, Iran. Stop develop nuclear weapons... and stop state sponsorship of international terrorism. Obama addressed the first, based on an incomplete confession, and left the second as a Pro-Choice.

Browndog said...

stevew said...

I bet it was stopped because PDT got assurances from the United Nations that they would speak to Iran in very, very stern tones and with strong language.


I did see a sitting republican Senator (forget who) yesterday who said we need to first go to the U.N. for a resolution, then build a "coalition of the willing" and then use "regional allies".

If he would have ended his interview with "lead from behind" it would have been perfect.

Milo Minderbinder said...

Nice. I was beginning to wonder who was running things around here....

MadisonMan said...

Time to launch a hashtag campaign. That's show Iran what's what!

iowan2 said...

Freder Frederson said...
I expect you all to criticize Trump as harshly as you criticized Obama for moving the red line in Syria.

Yeah . . . Right!


I was paying attention yesterday, and I never heard President Trump lay down any marker of any type. He did say there would be repercussions. I have no idea if there is any truth to this story. The White House is not responding to the story. At this time President Trump considers the press account an aide to his strategy. Right now I'm working with unknown, unknowns.
But do tell Feder, explain exactly what should have happened in the hours after our drone was shot down. Right now you get to squeal like a little girl regardless of what action is taken. Pick a position and defend it.

narciso said...

Most likely they would use cruise missiles or SUVs not piloted aircraft, what was the target they dont know

tim maguire said...

Freder Frederson said...

Because that is definitely not what you did when Obama moved the red line in Syria.


What is Trump's red line in Iran? (Hint: he doesn't have one). For all your struggles to pretend there is some connection between these two things that obligates us to...something...there isn't. There's just you being a disruptive force in the Althouse comment section. As usual.

Browndog said...

The retaliation plan was intended as a response to the shooting down of the unmanned, $130 million surveillance drone

Reports I've seen say it was our most advanced $220M Global Hawk.

Heartless Aztec said...

It was a Japanese flagged ship. Time for a Japanese carrier force to show their flag - or not. I think the U.S. has few aging super carriers that could be dished off to the Japs. Tora, tora, tora!

Freder Frederson said...

What is Trump's red line in Iran? (Hint: he doesn't have one).

here is Pompeo's statement:

"The United States will defend its forces, interests, and stand with our partners and allies to safeguard global commerce and regional stability."

Granted, he doesn't use the words "red line", but it sure sounds like a red line to me.

n.n said...

Some people are trying to force another Libya... Ukraine, why? Patience, little ones. Iran is not South Africa.

Bob Boyd said...

What do the Iranians want us to do? Why the provocations? And why now?

The mullahs aren't too popular. Maybe they're doing what the media wants to say Trump is doing, i.e. "wagging the dog."

Tank is right. There's no way to evaluate this development, only speculate.

Anyway, what's the rush?

narciso said...


Sounds like the hatfill investigation:


https://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2019/06/the-times-tips-the-fbi.php

roesch/voltaire said...

Good for Trump that he called down the Bolton inspired attack.

readering said...

Good. And I believe he should get Congressional authorization to attack Iranian military in Iran. But how do drones get more expensive than stealth fighters?

readering said...

Not just Bolton. But I hope he resigns.

Big Mike said...

I’m with the folks upthread who are skeptical of this report until it can be confirmed by a real news organization.

If the report is true then plausible hypotheses include, but not limited to, (1) Trump’s discovery that he’d been lied to and the drone was not in international airspace as he had been led to believe, or (2) the military was in a normal alert posture but this was misunderstood by MSN because they don’t know how the military works (and have no particular interest in learning), or (3) Trump is playing games with the mullahs’ minds, or (4) the message was intended for the Europeans and Chinese, who depend on Iranian oil, that they can exert pressure on Iran or watch the Gulf go up in flames. Or a combination of these, possibly with other things we don’t know about and probably never will.

I do not understand why Freder the Fool thinks this episode is remotely comparable with Obama’s flamboyant announcement of a red line, then not acting on it in the face of evidence that the line had been crossed. His IQ must be in the single digits.

mccullough said...

Poorly played by Iran.

Let’s just snatch the mullah bank accounts in Europe. We can buy more drones with that. Paint a portrait of the mullah on the side like the Memphis Belle.

Darrell said...

Time to issue that Iran Flight 655 US postage stamp with "One for the Gipper" on it. Boom.

Darrell said...

Send up Freder Frederson in international airspace near Iran with a battery-operated CB radio to flush them out. Chuck can go with.

Michael said...

Freder
It sounds like one to you because you want it to. You would have much preferred a confrontation so you could use your dusty warmonger script written back in 16

whitney said...

Trump is a very stable genius

Giovan Pietro Bellori said...

That’s what it “sounds like” to Field Marshal Freder.

Bob Boyd said...

Trump on twitter:

President Obama made a desperate and terrible deal with Iran – Gave them 150 Billion Dollars plus I.8 Billion Dollars in CASH! Iran was in big trouble and he bailed them out. Gave them a free path to Nuclear Weapons, and SOON. Instead of saying thank you, Iran yelled…..

….Death to America. I terminated deal, which was not even ratified by Congress, and imposed strong sanctions. They are a much weakened nation today than at the beginning of my Presidency, when they were causing major problems throughout the Middle East. Now they are Bust!….

….On Monday they shot down an unmanned drone flying in International Waters. We were cocked & loaded to retaliate last night on 3 different sights when I asked, how many will die. 150 people, sir, was the answer from a General. 10 minutes before the strike I stopped it, not….

….proportionate to shooting down an unmanned drone. I am in no hurry, our Military is rebuilt, new, and ready to go, by far the best in the world. Sanctions are biting & more added last night. Iran can NEVER have Nuclear Weapons, not against the USA, and not against the WORLD!

Phil said...

It's both laughable and detestable to compare shooting down a drone with using chemical weapons on your own people. It takes a special kind of heel to compare the two events in any context. But Freder rises to the occasion. Congrats.

stevew said...

Browndog said...
I did see a sitting republican Senator (forget who) yesterday who said we need to first go to the U.N. for a resolution, then build a "coalition of the willing" and then use "regional allies".

Oh, man, now they've ruined my moderate attempt at humor! Dammit!

wendybar said...

Who was it again who said "I'm really good at killing people"??? It wasn't President Trump who backed out when he found out there could be 150 deaths if they retaliated. The God of the Democratic party is the one who made the claim of killing people. Of course....the media did a good job of spinning that one!!

Darrell said...

Send up Freder Frederson in a hot air balloon over international airspace near Iran with a battery-operated CB radio to flush them out. Chuck can go with.

Forgot an important part.

Phil said...

"We have communicated in no uncertain terms with every player in the region that that’s a red line for us and that there would be enormous consequences if we start seeing movement on the chemical weapons front or the use of chemical weapons." v
"The United States will defend its forces, interests, and stand with our partners and allies to safeguard global commerce and regional stability."

Take the L Freder. You lost this one when you hit 'send' the first time.

wendybar said...

There should be a comma between President Trump and who backed in my last comment.. Otherwise it doesn't make sense. Sorry.

Browndog said...

So, Trump sends the message that he's ready, willing, and able to use force to protect American interests while at the same time show restraint.

Simply masterful.

narciso said...

Treason doth prosper:

https://freebeacon.com/national-security/rubio-slams-washington-post-report-on-trump-losing-interest-in-venezuela/

Michael K said...

What we wanted was Iran to stop their aggressive actions in the strait. What if we get that goal by simply waiting.

Remember when you were a kid and and your mom said "wait for your father to get home". Which was worse, the punishment or the waiting.


Who else is ready to bet that Trump let that leak to the NY Slimes, the attack, not the cancellation.? Tom Clancy used to have a story of a "Canary Trap" in his novels where a suspected leaker is told one version of the planned action to identify him.

I see no reason to attack Iran now. I haver my doubts that Trump planned to do so. I don't trust the Times as much as Field Marshall Freder does, I guess.

Big Mike said...

Maybe the Navy can send up fighters to escort Iranian passenger jets when they enter international airspace? Purely to assure their safety, of course.

Darrell said...

I hope Chuck comments about Trump's golf balls at the NYT site. It might make top comment.

Craig Howard said...

Why the provocations? And why now?

Advice from John F. Kerry?

Inga...Allie Oop said...

Trump pulls back at the last second from a strike on Iran, maybe he’s like Obama who never attacked Iran, despite what the idiot Trump thought. Trump has a big mouth, one day his mouth will get some country to strike us seriously, not just shoot down a drone.

“Don't let Obama play the Iran card in order to start a war in order to get elected--be careful Republicans!”
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 22, 2012

“I predict that President Obama will at some point attack Iran in order to save face!”
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 16, 2013

“Remember that I predicted a long time ago that President Obama will attack Iran because of his inability to negotiate properly-not skilled!”
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 11, 2013

“Remember what I previously said--Obama will someday attack Iran in order to show how tough he is.”
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 25, 2013

Narr said...

We won't know the truth of this for 50 or 100 years, if then.

Narr
And no thanks to the NYT

wild chicken said...

"The result of media's constant fake news, it is impossible to be sure what is real -"

Not only that, how much of our military and CIA "intelligence" is real?

Murph said...

No government officials asked The New York Times to withhold the article.

That sentence jarred me, coming as it did after the WH/Pentagon "no comment" bit. Is that suggested type of "print / please don't print" statement usually included in a piece like this?

Because if the NYT has ever in the past been asked by [unnamed] government officisals to withhold an article, it doesn't seem to have cared to comply....

Inga...Allie Oop said...

Why does Trump keep Bolton on, why did he choose him to begin with?

narciso said...

He paid 150 billion in frozen assets, he let Yemen fall to the Houthis, now we do arm the Lebanese army which is effectively Hezbollah

Narr said...

Inga's here! To remind us that Trump, like Ronnie Raygun(-zap), endangers the country with his big mouth.

Narr
What country will strike us, Inga? I want to be ready

Inga...Allie Oop said...

“Not only that, how much of our military and CIA "intelligence" is real?”

Let’s all disbelieve our own CIA and get our intel from Russia, Trump nods his head in approval.

narciso said...

Well that's where the bureau gets their Intel from, allegedly the deputy director of the SVR, of course its bollocks

Michael K said...

Blogger Inga...Allie Oop said...
“Not only that, how much of our military and CIA "intelligence" is real?”

Let’s all disbelieve our own CIA and get our intel from Russia, Trump nods his head in approval.


That's what Clapper and Brennan did, you idiot. They got their intel from the FSB, via Steele.

Inga...Allie Oop said...

Trump probably pulled back from a strike because Putin whispered in his ear and reminded him of a few things. Russia and Iran are allies. I don’t believe for a minute Trump cared how many would be killed. Not for a second.

Birkel said...

Trump considers proportionality.
This is a very stable decision.
Leftists are upset.

Michael K said...

Richard Fernandez, who knows a bit more than Inga, posted this:

As someone noted on Twitter "our calculus changed on closing the Straits, not just due to domestic fracking output, but because China now consumes vast amounts of ME oil. 20 years ago, closing the straits hurt mainly our Asian allies. Now, it hurts our rival."

Interesting calculus.

Bob Boyd said...

Why does Trump keep Bolton on, why did he choose him to begin with?

Even if Trump is reluctant to resort to military force, he doesn't necessarily want the world to know that. Keeping Bolton on the front porch makes 'em think twice about coming through the gate.

narciso said...

That and surkov, as if Putin's eminence gris would tell Litvinenko handler anything.

Inga...Allie Oop said...

“That's what Clapper and Brennan did, you idiot. They got their intel from the FSB, via Steele.”

Sorry senile coot, I don’t believe in conspiracy theories. They didn’t get their intel from Russian government agencies. If you don’t know the difference between the Russian Intel Agencies and civilian assets who are willing to give you intel, you are further gone than I thought. What makes you people so stupid? It’s truly astounding.

narciso said...

It's the our man in Havana problem, that Graham greene derived from this experience in portugal.

mtrobertslaw said...

And he was so,so close! John Bolton is now on suicide watch.

readering said...

I give POTUS a pass because I agree with his ultimate decision, but stable genius takes on last 24 hours are bonkers,

n.n said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
n.n said...

but because China now consumes vast amounts of ME oil

Rival of a kind. China has to be kept black, in order for America to remain green. It's a useful compromise for the sake of our lawns.

Darrell said...

If our CIA and Intelligence was on the up and up, John Brennan and James Clapper would have been fragged the first time they went to the shitter.

Bruce Hayden said...

From the end of the thread last night:

Blogger Bruce Hayden said...
Blogger David Begley said...
“NYT: Trump calls back jets.”

“How can we believe that?”

Does it matter? Launching and recalling jets is essentially equivalent to leaking that jets were launched and recalled, whether or not the leak was accurate or not. The effect either way was to ratchet up the pressure a bit on Iran. Is Trump really that crazy, and his generals intervened in the last minute? Or is that just what we want the Iranians to think? We don’t know at this point, and probably more importantly, the Iranians don’t know. They may have seen some distant echos on their long distance radars. Maybe a lot of them. Or, maybe they are just being led to believe that the planes involved were just too stealthy for them to detect. Doesn’t really matter.

One thing for sure is that our military isn’t going to risk manned aircraft until they know precisely where every radar, every SAM site is located. We (and the Iranians next door) saw how this operated in the opening phase of Desert Storm, almost 30 years ago. If the Iranians can take down a Global Hawk drone in international airspace flying at 60k or so feet, they can very likely take down at least some of our non stealthy jets. So, at a minimum, they need to light up all, or at least all of the relevant part, of the Iranian air defense system in order to know where to send the missiles that would be inevitably launched in front of any serious air assault.

My guess is that this is a ruse, because I think that a real attack would probably be mostly, if not entirely, missile based. That is the low risk alternative on our part, we have shown that this is the case in the past, is our preference, and, no doubt have the assets in place or nearby already to pull it off.


Blogger Michael K said...
until they know precisely where every radar, every SAM site is located.

Another possibility is that the next drone will be a Reaper with ARM missiles attached.

The greater power allows the Reaper to carry 15 times more ordnance payload and cruise at about three times the speed of the MQ-1.[6] The aircraft is monitored and controlled by aircrew in the Ground Control Station (GCS), including weapons employment.

more advanced ARMs such as the AGM-78 Standard ARM and AGM-88 HARM missiles, which have inertial guidance systems (INS) built-in. This allows them to remember the radar's direction if it is turned off and continue to fly towards it. ARMs are less likely to hit the radar if the radar is turned off shortly after the missile is launched, as the longer the radar is off (and assuming it never turns back on), the more error is introduced into the missile's course. The ALARM even has an added loiter mode, with a built in parachute, enabling it to descend slowly until the radar lights up, when the rocket motor will re-ignite.

narciso said...

What was the target a missile battery those cars easy to move, a naval base is heavily firtified.

narciso said...

You would need someone on the ground, to paint the target.

Hari said...

If Trump says he wants to fire Muller, but doesn't, it's obstruction.
If Trump says he wants to bomb Iran, but doesn't, it's an unauthorized act of war.

Next up: Trump to be impeached for not getting permission from congress before not going to war with Iran. They've got him this time.

Birkel said...

readering agrees with the POTUS but cannot allow any credit.
Unstable.
Not genius.

Try to imagine how a Normal sees these events.
Perspective.

Michael K said...

More non-Inga intelligence:

Iran only gains by raising tensions in the Strait, upping the price of oil. But actually closing the Strait would be political, if not national suicide. Most of the oil passing through Hormuz (about 11/17ths) is bound for the Straits of Malacca en route to China, Japan and Korea. If Tehran actually closed the Straits, by mining it for example, they would essentially be blockading China.

Michael K said...

What was the target a missile battery those cars easy to move,

Not fast enough to beat an ARM on a reciprocal course.

n.n said...

And he was so,so close! John Bolton is now on suicide watch.

The New York Clock proclaims he was brilliant in the role of bad cop.

Shnopes gives his critics two fetuses with a side of arms, legs, fava beans, served with a nice Chianti.

Others are more circumspect.

Bob Boyd said...

@ Michael K

Right. And if Trump retaliated, the price of oil would go up even more, rewarding the mullahs. By not escalating, Trump may sooth market anxieties somewhat.

buwaya said...

It is indeed impossible to see what is real. The public does not know what the decision-makers know.

That situation is chronic and historically consistent. At best it will, to a large extent, come out several decades from now. Sometimes important parts will remain a secret forever, taken to the grave, or several graves. Such as FDRs plans and execution of the path to war in 1940-41. Taking secrets to the grave is not rare but normal. Too many people are overtrusting in the quality of historical knowledge.

narciso said...

Certainly, putting hornbeck as head of the far east section, had significant impact, same with organizing the flying tigers.

Birkel said...

Do Hair-On-Fire reports about things that didn't happen help the reputation of The Enemy of the People press?
Or do they cement the opinion of Normals that the press has declared sides?

What dry powder does the press have?
Does that help or hurt Trump?

Cui Bono?

n.n said...

Trump on twitter:

President Obama made a desperate and terrible deal with Iran..

I terminated deal, which was not even ratified by Congress, and imposed strong sanctions. They are a much weakened nation today than at the beginning of my Presidency, when they were causing major problems throughout the Middle East. Now they are Bust!

On Monday they shot down an unmanned drone flying in International Waters. We were cocked & loaded to retaliate...

... proportionate to shooting down an unmanned drone. I am in no hurry, our Military is rebuilt, new, and ready to go, by far the best in the world.


A practical, rational, and measured play.

Michael K said...

Taking secrets to the grave is not rare but normal. Too many people are overtrusting in the quality of historical knowledge.

The use of electronic files which can be deleted by bad actors like Hillary will make history even more difficult to assemble. Since History as a subject is being removed from the education of our children by Gramscian "educators," there is little likelihood of improvement. The "Memory Hole" is being institutionalized.

Birkel said...

Gina Haspel favored an attack.
That is a strong argument against.

n.n said...

Too many people are overtrusting in the quality of historical knowledge.

Human and physical, too.

narciso said...

Some persoective:

https://mobile.twitter.com/SteveKrak/status/1142079319570898944

Ken B said...

What did we know yesterday? That Trump has not bombed Iran. What do we know today? That Trump has not bombed Iran. News?

bagoh20 said...

Maybe when Trump was told it would kill 150 people, he simply said: "not good enough", and called it off.

bagoh20 said...

Peace monger.

BleachBit-and-Hammers said...

No matter what Trump does, the collective left will find fault. Any direction will do.

Birkel said...

Again, how do the Normals react?
What well of trust does the MSM have to convince normals?

After not firing Mueller and not retaliating against Iran, what else can Trump be blamed for not doing?
Not building the wall?
How does the MSM make that argument?

Complicated thinking exists, people.
Try it.

Francisco D said...

Two separate posts from the same person:

Trump probably pulled back from a strike because Putin whispered in his ear and reminded him of a few things.

Sorry senile coot, I don’t believe in conspiracy theories.

Yes. The Bedpan Commando is back in da house!

narciso said...

They think they possess the reality stone.

Michael K said...

This is an interesting matrix forming in the Middle East, Iran vs China. Russia is supporting Iran. China is dependent on the oil coming through the Hormuz strait.

Trump is just watching and squeezing Iran's balls. Monetarily speaking, of course.

Birkel said...

Michael K,
I believe the style guide requires you to say "Trump is grabbing Iran by the pussy."
You're welcome.

Ray - SoCal said...

The US traditionally plays checkers, while the Iranians play chess.

Trump just flipped the game board over.

Before Iran was all ready to play the victim, rally the population against the bully US, and portray the Trump as a warmonger.

Iranians government actions like certainty, and take actions that are very low risk, and are incremental.

Trumps actions now put the monkey on the Iranians governments back...

Roy Lofquist said...

@narcisco,

Would you please learn how to use the shift key? I sometimes wonder if you have anything interesting to say but I refuse to read poorly punctuated or ungrammatical writing.

Meade said...

"Why does Trump keep Bolton on, why did he choose him to begin with?"

Keep your Bannon friends close and your (neocon) Bolton friends closer.

narciso said...

I included the relevant link, from a interesting source

Giovan Pietro Bellori said...

Gross old 90 IQ hag Inga thinks those Trump tweets make HER point, when it's EXACTLY the opposite.
The other illiterate Becky seems to be gone from the thread, too.

n.n said...

I believe the style guide requires you to say "Trump is grabbing Iran by the pussy."

If they consent. It seems that Iran is but a poor player, a cat in a hat, dancing on a hot international stage. It's not that they don't have claws, but they'll have to sharpen them another way. Social justice, averted.

Bruce Hayden said...

"Why does Trump keep Bolton on, why did he choose him to begin with?"

Bolton is very bright and he scares our enemies?

Michael K said...

Blogger Birkel said...
Michael K,
I believe the style guide requires you to say "Trump is grabbing Iran by the pussy."
You're welcome.


My limited experience suggests that one is painful and the other is not.

narayanan said...

Michael K said... Trump is just watching and squeezing Iran's balls

earlier administrations had allowed the Middle East to squeeze our balls due to oil.

China is dependent on the oil coming through the Hormuz strait.

Russia is "supporting" (= egging on) Iran but would prefer no oil flows from M E

https://www.energy-reporters.com/production/gazprom-china-pipeline-to-be-ready-three-months-early/


Francisco D said...

Keep your Bannon friends close and your (neocon) Bolton friends closer.

Yes. it is important to remember that Trump has to cobble together different factions of the Republican, Neo-Con and Tea parties. The intellectual diversity in his cabinet serves that purpose. IMO, it also serves him well.

buwaya said...

Conspiracy theories are the only ones with which one can hope to understand the world as it is. That approach is by far the most realistic. We contemplate the acts and hear the words of the leadership, without knowing what they know, or the perspective which they bring into their decisions. To us, as a practical matter, everything that goes on at that level is a conspiracy. We do not have that information required to understand what is going on. This is consistent in history.

Giovan Pietro Bellori said...

I don’t believe in conspiracy theories.
I don’t believe for a minute Trump cared how many would be killed. Not for a second.

Snakehandling religious maniac Inga lays out the tenets of her childlike faith.

Yancey Ward said...

(1) Trump is correct- killing some Iranians would not have been proportionate, and (2) it now puts the Iranians in a position where they will have to de-escalate, or be seen clearly as provocateurs. I think the drone shoot down pretty much proves the Iranians were behind the mining of the two ships last week- for whatever reason, they are trying to provoke a response for some purpose.

Also, can you imagine being the personnel manning the radar installations and missile batteries?

Francisco D said...

If Trump says he wants to fire Muller, but doesn't, it's obstruction.
If Trump says he wants to bomb Iran, but doesn't, it's an unauthorized act of war.

Next up: Trump to be impeached for not getting permission from congress before not going to war with Iran. They've got him this time.


That pretty much sums it up for the Left.

Bruce Hayden said...

“This is an interesting matrix forming in the Middle East, Iran vs China. Russia is supporting Iran. China is dependent on the oil coming through the Hormuz strait.”

And just last week we saw fevered articles about the two countries collaborating together against us.

Of course they are going to try to collaborate against us. But that is only going so far. Russia has what China probably needs most: land and esp natural resources. It isn’t brotherly sentiments that has kept China from making a play for Siberia, but rather, I expect, fear of Russia’s aging nuclear arsenal. Time is likely on the side of China, and they have always been patient.

I think that one of the amazing things that Trump has done is turn us into a petro power. Obama was more than willing to virtue signal us into a greatly inferior position through his policies, including his attempts to kill our recent fossil fuels boom. MAGA. Instead of being dependent upon OPEC for survival, we are now a top producer, and have significantly tightened sanctions on two of the original OPEC members (Iran and Venezuela), while tightening the noose on the Russians a bit too. We are no longer completely dependent on foreign oil. If this situation drives up the cost of oil around the world, our oil will go up in price too. China, Japan, etc will suffer but what is that to us? Maybe we should talk trade policy with those countries first, before we solve the Iranian problem? We have time. They don’t.

My question with the Democrats in general, and Obama in particular, is whether they were really that stupid, to give away much of our strategic advantage through virtue signaling adherence to the AGW hoax, or (and?) they were evil enough to do it with full knowledge of the damage they were doing to this country?

Michael K said...

I think the drone shoot down pretty much proves the Iranians were behind the mining of the two ships last week- for whatever reason, they are trying to provoke a response for some purpose.

I wonder what it was showing ? The tapes must exist as the drone downloads continuously.

The key point, although Inga might disagree, is that we are not dependent on that oil. If Hillary had been elected and shut down fracking as she promised, Iran would have us by the balls instead of the other way around. Trump can play off Iran against China.

Freder Frederson said...

(1) Trump is correct- killing some Iranians would not have been proportionate

Are we really supposed to believe that it was only ten minutes before the attack that Trump finally asked how many people would be killed? Shouldn't that be the first question that any reasonable person would ask? I for one am not that gullible.

I call extreme stupidity, naivety, and/or bullshit.

Yancey Ward said...

Freder, hard decisions often take time to make. You may well start preparations, and then think it over until the go/no go point is reached. However, I am sure you won't understand this idea.

Giovan Pietro Bellori said...

I call extreme stupidity, naivety, and/or bullshit.

Funny, that's the first thing anyone thinks of when they read your comments, Becky.

Yancey Ward said...

Additionally, one might have to convince themselves that it wasn't proportionate, especially in the face of the views of those who think otherwise. This idea that everyone can make such a decision immediately is kind of insane on its face.

Yancey Ward said...

And I have to remind the ignorant idiots like Freder that there is a precedent here- the Syrian strikes where the Syrians and the Russians were warned ahead of time so that the casualties would be minimal. It isn't like this is the first time that Trump acted with the idea of proportionality in mind. Seriously, does Freder believe Trump is a bloodthirsty killer?

Giovan Pietro Bellori said...

Seriously, does Freder believe Trump is a bloodthirsty killer?

Of course he does. Nice White Ladies all think that.

Freder Frederson said...

Freder, hard decisions often take time to make. You may well start preparations, and then think it over until the go/no go point is reached. However, I am sure you won't understand this idea.

Well that is not what he claimed in his tweets. He said it was after they were "cocked and loaded" that he finally asked how many people would die.

Freder Frederson said...

Seriously, does Freder believe Trump is a bloodthirsty killer?

No, I think he is a bloody idiot.

Roughcoat said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Birkel said...

Best evidence available: The attack did not happen.
That fact supports the idea that Trump, as C-in-C, told the military to stand down.

Over to you, Freder Frederson.

Inga...Allie Oop said...

“Republicans who have enabled Trump and excused his erratic, incoherent foreign policy as part of some grand plan bear a huge amount of responsibility for the current mess. Uber-hawks such as Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) are all too anxious to goad Trump into military war, but without regard to Trump’s own capacity to lead such an effort and without a cogent strategy.”

WaPo

Truer words... Trump and his bluster and tough talk have been exposed. He’s a weakling and a coward, now Iran knows this as well as the rest of sane America. What leader runs his mouth like Trump? Little Kim comes to mind, Trump’s little buddy who writes him love letters. Trump knows if he went through with the strike, Russia would no longer have his back and that’s what scares him the most.

Giovan Pietro Bellori said...

No, I think he is a bloody idiot.

Sure.

Anyway, he's significantly smarter than you. And Hillary Clinton.

Michael K said...

Shouldn't that be the first question that any reasonable person would ask? I for one am not that gullible.

Being a Field Marshal and all, I would think you might wonder if the NY Times was truthful.

Maybe this is all a play on the media's gullibility.

Giovan Pietro Bellori said...

Chickenhawks Freder and Inga, reporting for internet duty!

Roughcoat said...

"The "Memory Hole" is being institutionalized."

Pshaw. There has always been a memory hole with respect to history. History is complex, slippery, elusive, multifaceted -- a hall of mirrors. It isn't mathematics. As a professional historian specializing in Bronze Age military history, I can attest to the protean nature of history as well as to the enterprise of history. Still, history must be "done" and never mind that doing it is a Rashoman-type undertaking, or like the three blind beggars describing an elephant. Which, not incidentally, is what makes doing it so much fun.

"'What is truth' said jesting Pilate, and did not wait for answer."

Indeed.

Bruce Hayden said...

“(1) Trump is correct- killing some Iranians would not have been proportionate, and (2) it now puts the Iranians in a position where they will have to de-escalate, or be seen clearly as provocateurs. I think the drone shoot down pretty much proves the Iranians were behind the mining of the two ships last week- for whatever reason, they are trying to provoke a response for some purpose.”

I think that they are getting desperate. They are a financial basket case (which, of course, was partially alleviated for awhile by Obama reducing sanctions while giving them pallets of cash), with most of the population turning away from their Shi’a faith, thanks to its close connection to the ruling regime there. They see the filthy Arab camel jockeys next door in Iraq doing decently well, while their economy continues to collapse, and yearn for the days before the Shah was deposed.

The important thing is for their regime to get their populace’s eyes off their current declining situation, and focus it on a common enemy, in particular, the Great Satan, the US. Which is probably one of the biggest reasons that US boots on the ground in Iran are probably highly unlikely - because that would likely be the best way for the Iranian regime to regain the support of the bulk of their populace (Iranians are a very proud people, looking back to their thousands of years of civilization).

“Also, can you imagine being the personnel manning the radar installations and missile batteries?”

Likely too young to remember what happened next door, to their Iraqi counterparts, on the night that we initiated Desert Storm.

Birkel said...

Royal ass Inga,
I am glad you are here.
Can you remind me what the coherent strategy in Libya was?
And the qualities of the C-in-C at that time?

Do you have a MSM article to cite, please?

Giovan Pietro Bellori said...

Everything Trump tweets must be LITERALLY true or it's a lie, like when Obama said "Tell Vladimir I'll have more flexibility after the election" he meant he'd be better at yoga.

Roughcoat said...

"You would need someone on the ground, to paint the target."

Not anymore. There are other ways.

Michael K said...

Trump knows if he went through with the strike, Russia would no longer have his back and that’s what scares him the most.

Does the definition of insanity include believing something long after it has been proven false ?

When Barr starts marching people to prison for the attempted coup, I wonder of that will shake Inga and the left's delusions ?

Nah, that would be rational.

Meanwhile, AOC speaks out.

She was heard yelling, “Who turned out the lights?” while repeatedly running full speed into walls. Republicans immediately pounced,

Kind like Inga and Freder,.

Yancey Ward said...

He asked the question at the right time, I think. How could someone answer the question before the plans were made, Freder? And how do you know that there weren't multiple plans and that one was the one with the minimal casualties, and proved to be too much. Such assessments can't be made until you actually know what is going to be done. Additionally, he is being advised on a range of other considerations, and perhaps the casualty numbers were the one thing that tipped him to calling it off.

Seriously, you are attempting to hold him to a standard that no one can actually meet in reality. What I get from you is that you think it was the right choice, but you can't give him any credit whatsoever for making it.

Inga...Allie Oop said...

Trump showed he could draw a red line with his tongue, but when Russia said “snap shit!” Trump said “how high?”

Hahahahaha, Trump is a red line drawer just like Obama, isn’t he?

Trump shouldn’t run his mouth. Trump made himself look weak and indecisive. Of course he shouldn’t have even considered striking Iran over the downing of a drone, of course he shouldn’t be influenced by Pompeo, Bolton or the other war mongers in Congress. Now they all look like the idiots they are.

Beasts of England said...

I guess the Iranian leaders are busy today figuring out what kind of strike would have killed 150 people.

Achilles said...

Nichevo said...
Why is anybody talking, unless it is WH maskirova? If not, some people need to be shot in the back of the head.

Almost everyone in DC is a corrupt sellout. That includes the Pentagon swamp.

The whole place needs to be leveled.

Achilles said...

Inga...Allie Oop said...
Trump showed he could draw a red line with his tongue, but when Russia said “snap shit!” Trump said “how high?”

Hahahahaha, Trump is a red line drawer just like Obama, isn’t he?

Trump shouldn’t run his mouth. Trump made himself look weak and indecisive. Of course he shouldn’t have even considered striking Iran over the downing of a drone, of course he shouldn’t be influenced by Pompeo, Bolton or the other war mongers in Congress. Now they all look like the idiots they are.


Inga has to be one of the dumbest people in the world.

This comment could only be posted by a complete moron.

Giovan Pietro Bellori said...

Can anyone even parse what that retarded old bat is saying? Is Trump supposed to send Freder lead her cannon-fodder sprogs into battle or not?

Inga...Allie Oop said...

“When Barr starts marching people to prison for the attempted coup, I wonder of that will shake Inga and the left's delusions ?”

Keep hope alive!

Hahahahaha!

Roughcoat said...

Trump is playing Iran brilliantly. His decisions are achieving results on several levels. His strategy is very Clauswitzian. I have no idea as to the extent of his knowledge (if any) of Clauswitzian theory. I suspect he has little formal knowledge. It seems clear, however, that he has an intuitive grasp of it.

Inga...Allie Oop said...

It’s pathetic to see you Cultists still hanging on to the Trump dream.


Achilles said...

Inga...Allie Oop said...

Trump knows if he went through with the strike, Russia would no longer have his back and that’s what scares him the most.


It is hard to believe there are people that are this stupid.

Giovan Pietro Bellori said...

What is the Trump dream for Iran? How's the mind-reading going, you idiot crone? If it includes starting a war over what's happened already I'm not on board, dummy.

Meanwhile the Warren dream includes your grandsons paying reparations, so get right on that you disgusting old hag.

Giovan Pietro Bellori said...

Striking Iran means that Russia might not have Trump's back?

What did striking Syria mean you ignorant drooler?

mockturtle said...

Trump is playing Iran brilliantly. His decisions are achieving results on several levels. His strategy is very Clauswitzian. I have no idea as to the extent of his knowledge (if any) of Clauswitzian theory. I suspect he has little formal knowledge. It seems clear, however, that he has an intuitive grasp of it.

Well, he did attend military academy so maybe he did study Clausewitz.

Roughcoat said...

Trump also seems to have an intuitive grasp of Sun Tzu. E.g., "“The supreme art of war is to subdue the enemy without fighting.”

Michael McNeil said...

“When Barr starts marching people to prison for the attempted coup, I wonder of that will shake Inga and the left's delusions ?”
Keep hope alive!
Hahahahaha!


Inga's whistling past the graveyard again.

To paraphrase her: let's wait for the [IG, etc.] report, shall we?

Achilles said...

Inga...Allie Oop said...
It’s pathetic to see you Cultists still hanging on to the Trump dream.

We are hanging on to 3+% growth, rising wages, border enforcement, no new wars and ending old globalist shill wars etc.

You supported Obama's <2% growth, stagnating wages, 90% of new jobs being part time, new wars in Libya, Iraq, Syria, Tunisia, Oman, the rest of north africa, open borders, spying on political opponents, and using the federal bureaucracy as a political stasi.

This person still believes Trump is being blackmailed by Russia because Russia has a video of Trump paying a prostitute to pee on a bed Obama slept in.

She believes Trump colluded with Russia to get himself elected so he could avoid this dastardly secret tape from coming out.

wwww said...

The USA needs a Sec of Defense immediately.

Mattis resigned in January & Shanahan withdrew because his son beat up his mother with a baseball bat.

Bruce Hayden said...

“The important thing is for their regime to get their populace’s eyes off their current declining situation, and focus it on a common enemy, in particular, the Great Satan, the US. Which is probably one of the biggest reasons that US boots on the ground in Iran are probably highly unlikely - because that would likely be the best way for the Iranian regime to regain the support of the bulk of their populace (Iranians are a very proud people, looking back to their thousands of years of civilization). ”

I think that our strategy for some time with Iran (excluding the time during which Obama was propping up the regime) has bee to push regime change. We might have been able to effect such militarily right after Desert Storm, but Clinton essentially took that option off the table by demobilizing so many divisions (and squadrons) as his feckless “Peace Dividend”. With the manpower we had available for Desert Storm, we might have been able to roll into Tehran. Since then, we have had a hard time maintaining troops in much less populated Iraq, while also fighting in Afghanistan. As I noted above, the one thing that would bring the Iranian people together, behind their tyrannical regime, is an attack by the US, and, in particular, the introduction of any American ground troops. It would like invading Iraq multiplied a couple times, while we still have troops in both Iraq and Afghanistan. Which is why regime change is almost assuredly the long range strategy. If we can force them to now deescalate now, time is on our side.

mockturtle said...

Of course, sometimes the most effective military strategies are those that defy accepted theory, as Nobunaga employed with great success in 16th century Japan.

Michael K said...

This is an interesting discussion and Inga and Freder can be safely ignored.

Iran can close the strait but that hurts China, our rival, not us. Meanwhile Trump will meet Xi at the G 20 next week, I think.

Negotiations about tariffs will occur before the Iran crisis ends. Anybody (sane) want to speculate if the Straits of Hormuz will come up ?

Roughcoat said...

Of course, sometimes the most effective military strategies are those that defy accepted theory, as Nobunaga employed with great success in 16th century Japan.

Or that other Japanese strategem, the "Kobyashi Maru Gambit"! :)

Michael K said...

With the manpower we had available for Desert Storm, we might have been able to roll into Tehran.

The terrain is very difficult, I understand. Iraq was flat. I see no benefit to invasion or even attack now. Let them simmer while Trump talks to Xi.

The next and most dangerous play might be to unleash those 10,000 rockets they gave Hezbollah in Lebanon.

Big Mike said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Big Mike said...

In my comment at 8:30 I listed four plausible hypotheses to explain Trump’s action. Turns out that #5 was most germane — Trump’s generals warned him that things could escalate in uncontrollable ways (though #3 and #4 are contributing). Worst impacted is Peggy Noonan, who predicted that Trump wouldn’t listen to his generals in today’s opinion column.

This episode reminds me a bit of Jack Kennedy during the Cuban Missile Crisis — many of his civilian advisors arguing for a preemptive strike and his generals advising him that there was no way to assure we could take out all of the missiles and advising him that we probably would kill Russian nationals in a preemptive strike.

cubanbob said...

Time will tell if Trump is a very calculative guy or acts on his gut. Since we no longer depend on the middle east for oil as we didn't before, we have the luxury of letting Iran ramp up it's actions until such time the Europeans and the Chinese see the wisdom of really squeezing Iran while quietly humiliating themselves by begging the US to organize and protect convoys. If this were to occur, then the squeezing of not only Iran but of North Korea (and perhaps others) will get more intense. Just like it took Nixon to go to China it may well turn out it took Trump to reign China in and defange North Korea and Iran ( and possibly others). It's too soon to tell but it does seem quite plausible.

Inga...Allie Oop said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Roughcoat said...

China needs to be very careful. ME oil is absolutely critical to China's economic well-being. But that oil has a long way to go before reaching China and can easily be interdicted en route. That is why China is building port facilities in Myanmar and constructing a pipeline extending from the Myanmar coast to that nation's border with China. China is, for that purpose, engaged in a process that will turn Myanmar into a Chinese puppet state. Chinese strategists are acutely aware that most of the oil it presently obtains from the ME must pass through the Malacca Strait chokepoint. But there are problems with an oil pipeline through Myanamar, mainly in the form of the non-Burmese peoples who live along the pipeline's construction path and who are being displaced -- and accordingly embittered -- by the pipeline project. And tankers transiting from the ME through the Indian Ocean to Mynamar are virtual sitting ducks for attack.

Inga...Allie Oop said...

"If President Obama had crossed his stated Red Line In The Sand, the Syrian disaster would have ended long ago! Animal Assad would have been history!" Trump wrote on Twitter in April 2018, when the U.S., along with its British and French allies, bombed the country after a suspected chemical weapons attack that left dozens dead.“

Hahaha, your cult leader Trump is a pussyhawk.

John henry said...

Obama once threatened to drone the Jonas Brothers. Specifically with Predator drones.

Obama did drone one American citizen. Then, just by way of no harm, droned his son.

"I'm pretty good at killing people." he told us.

President Trump witheld a "kinetic" attack because it would have killed 150 people.

But he left open that there is still plenty of stuff he can do, kinetic and otherwise. And the likelihood that he will do something at sometime.

Something of his, not their, choosing. At a time and place of his, not their, choosing.

He'll be able to recycle the Wilson/fdr/lbj slogan "he kept us out of war"

Unlike those fascists/progressive democrats, in 2025 we will find it has been true.

Politicians love wars and military action to make them look strong and decisive. PDJT is not a polotician and doesn't need it to appear strong and decisive.

John Henry

Francisco D said...

I suspect Trump was told by military intelligence that the Iranians are planning to create havoc. The most important step is to lure the US into a conflict that will naturally be blamed on the US. The obvious purpose of an international crisis is to drive up the price of oil.

Qui bono? The Russians and the Iranians.

John henry said...

Narciso,

Our Man in Havana? Could you elaborate? I don't see vacuum cleaners bing involved here.

Seriously, great book but relevant how?

John Henry

Giovan Pietro Bellori said...

INGA CAN YOU ANSWER THE FUCKING QUESTION? IF NOT BOMBING IRAN IS DUE TO RUSSIAN PRESSURE, WHAT DOES THE SYRIAN STRIKE MEAN?

Francisco D said...

Hahaha, your cult leader Trump is a pussyhawk.

Inga's personality seems to be deteriorating as she gets older, fatter and uglier.

She has been sounding like a 6th grade mean girl bully since we found out what Mueller knew.

Inga...Allie Oop said...

Ooooo, do I hear someone yelling at the top of their lungs?


Hahahaha.

Giovan Pietro Bellori said...

Yes, we all note you won't answer the question, you disgusting old hag.

Brian said...

I think the drone shoot down pretty much proves the Iranians were behind the mining of the two ships last week- for whatever reason, they are trying to provoke a response for some purpose.

It's China. They need to change the current dynamic, and soon. The tariffs are killing them. They are about to trade North Korean nukes in exchange for a trade deal.

A war in the ME to "keep the shipping lanes open" would hurt Trump politically. And in the past would have been a disaster for the US economy. But the ground is different now. That oil doesn't go to the US it goes to China.

China (through their proxy Iran) bluffed Trump to try and goad him to escalating to war. Trump achieved the best of both worlds. Looking strong by launching a strike, only to turn it way at the last minute in a magnanimous effort to save the lives of poor Iranians on the ground. The implication being that he can kill Iranians anytime he wants to in the future. Don't push him. Trump has the advantage of time. China doesn't.

I wonder if the NSA is plugged into Iranian communications at such a level as they recognize the true state of Iranian hole cards.

Roughcoat said...

China's problems vis-à-vis oil is not dissimilar from that confronting Japan in the 1920s-30s. But China's situation is more parlous than Japan's by several orders of magnitude. That is why China is building its military and rattling its sabers. Japan did the same thing. Then Japan went to war with the West. It remains to be seen whether China will do the same.

Michael K said...

Rush is saying that the Iran leadership was unhappy with the SAM site commander. That was another factor. He made it obvious that the leaders were lying about the tanker attacks.

Also, there is this.

U.S. President Donald Trump says he might take military action against Iran to prevent it from acquiring a nuclear weapon. But he has indicated he won't necessarily jump in to protect international oil supplies from the Middle East if they are under threat from the Islamic Republic.

The position, articulated by Trump in an interview with Time magazine on June 17, should not come as a surprise, even if it appears to be at odds with the Pentagon beefing up aircraft carriers and troops in the Middle East in recent weeks, citing a threat from Iran.

As Trump spelt out in the interview, the U.S. is no longer as dependent on oil from the Middle East as it was, thanks to burgeoning domestic production.

Air Force General Paul Selva, vice chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff, emphasized the message a day later, pointing out that China, Indonesia, Japan and South Korea were heavily dependent on supplies moving through the Strait of Hormuz, and needed to protect their interests. U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has made similar comments.

The argument that the Gulf of Oman, where six oil tankers were attacked in the space of a month over May and June, is not as strategic to the U.S. as it is to countries in Asia, cannot be faulted. The U.S.'s crude import volumes, including those from the Middle East, have plummeted since its shale renaissance sent domestic output rocketing from around 2012.

Meanwhile, China, India, Japan and South Korea, Asia's four largest oil consumers, secure up to half their crude requirements from the Middle East. If seaborne shipments of oil from that region -- a majority of which pass through the narrow Strait of Hormuz adjoining Iran -- are disrupted, it would be nothing short of disastrous for these countries.


And:

The leaders should decide if they can help provide security to commercial shipments in and around the Strait of Hormuz with naval escorts and inform Washington.

Japan, South Korea, Australia and New Zealand are the only Asian countries that maintain a minimum 90 days' worth of net oil imports as emergency stockpiles, based on the International Energy Agency's recommended guidelines. China has been building strategic oil reserves in recent years, but those are said to be equivalent to only about 32 days of net oil imports.

The emergency stockpiles will be used domestically, leaving those without reserves in the lurch. Oil producers in the region such as Indonesia, Malaysia, Australia and Vietnam already pump the most they can. Asian buyers could turn to the North Sea, West Africa, North America and Latin America for additional supplies but those don't have much spare capacity, at least nothing that can be brought on stream quickly.

In the longer term, Asian governments might want to send a clear message to the Trump administration: If their vital interests are directly impacted by Washington's actions against Iran, they need to have a say in those decisions instead of simply being left to mop up the mess afterward.


And maybe contribute to the security.

Giovan Pietro Bellori said...

Oh, it must be that 90-IQ Inga is waiting for Maddow or some other religious maniac to respond to her DM.

Char Char Binks said...

What warmonger! Trump is a loose cannon!

Bob Boyd said...

Are we really supposed to believe that it was only ten minutes before the attack that Trump finally asked how many people would be killed?

I don't believe that either, but its good messaging.
It counters the media narrative that Trump is cynically "wagging the dog" for domestic political consumption without regard for the human costs of military action.
It de-escalates the situation.
It tends to sooth the markets.
As Yancy Ward pointed out above, it puts the onus on the mullahs to meet Trump halfway on de-escalation or look like the crazy Norks.
And it will also appeal to the mass of Iranian people who don't like the rule of the mullahs and who are told by those mullahs that Trump has horns and the US is eager to kill them.
That's not to say I believe Trump doesn't care about those 150 lives. I think he does.

Giovan Pietro Bellori said...

China (through their proxy Iran) bluffed Trump to try and goad him to escalating to war.

Is Iran China's proxy or Russia's? It seems that Russia's and China's interests are opposed here, or potentially opposed.

Michael K said...

It seems that Russia's and China's interests are opposed here, or potentially opposed.

Yes, higher oil prices or an interruption of oil deliveries helps Russia and hurts China. That is why Nixon went to China. To decouple the two.

narayanan said...

In 2015, Iran agreed a long-term deal on its nuclear programme with a group of world powers known as the P5+1 - the US, UK, France, China, Russia and Germany.

P5 are at loggerheads with each other - UK, France, China, Russia and Germany.

+1 is aloof and watching in grim amusement - the US aka the Don

Giovan Pietro Bellori said...

To decouple the two.

Which should be our #1 interest in any case. That would be a reversal of pretty much everything the US has done since the end of the Cold War.

Roughcoat said...

In the longer term, Asian governments might want to send a clear message to the Trump administration: If their vital interests are directly impacted by Washington's actions against Iran, they need to have a say in those decisions instead of simply being left to mop up the mess afterward.

Or else they'll do ... what, exactly? Hold their collective breath until they turn blue (presumably from lack of oil)?

When have the aforesaid Asian nations who have a vital interest in the uninterrupted flow of ME oil to their shores ever taken meaningful action to help ensure that outcome?

"The spice must flow. . . . He who controls the spice controls the universe."

Giovan Pietro Bellori said...

Or else they'll do ... what, exactly? Hold their collective breath until they turn blue (presumably from lack of oil)?

When have the aforesaid Asian nations who have a vital interest in the uninterrupted flow of ME oil to their shores ever taken meaningful action to help ensure that outcome?


The very same thing with Europe. I lived there for years and Europeans think that the US is dependent on them. It's surreal.

Jim at said...

Trump turning leftists into warmongering neocons.

Is there anything he can't do?

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