April 29, 2017

Maybe the president believes he’s won a great victory over the wicked Syrians by lobbing cruise missiles at one of their underused air bases. Maybe Trump believes that he’s scared the evil Russians and the too big for their sampans Chinese into obedience.

His 22,000 lb MOAB terror bomb on Afghanistan should keep those pesky Taliban quiet for a while even though the Pentagon claimed the intended target was a group- Khorosan – that may not actually exist.

Those major malefactors, the crazy North Koreans, could be about to feel America’s full military might if they so much as twitch.

Not content with nearly stirring up a new war with North Korea, President Donald Trump is now waving the big stick at another of Washington’s favorite bogeymen, Iran. For the Trumps, Iran is poison.

In recent days, President Trump has threatened to renounce the six-power nuclear agreement to freeze or shrink Iran’s nuclear infrastructure. This sensible pact was signed during the Obama administration by the great powers: US, Britain, France, Russia, Germany and China. Trump appears willing to abrogate the treaty and outrage the other great powers just because he hates Iran for some reason and, it appears, Muslims in general.

The Trump administration seems increasingly influenced by Israel’s far right Netanyahu government. In fact, PM Netanyahu often appears the most moderate member of his rightist coalition which is dominated by militant West Bank settlers.

Trump has surrounded himself with ardent supporters of Israel’s right. One of his major bankrollers is casino mogul Sheldon Adelson who is a key supporter of Jewish expansion on the illegally occupied West Bank.

Israel’s right has made a hate fetish of Iran and incessantly calls for war against the Islamic Republic. However, the mighty US Israel lobby twice failed to push the Obama administration to attack Iran. The US Congress, by contrast, is totally under the thumb of Israel’s American lobby and pays more respect to PM Netanyahu than the president. He who pays the piper….

In fact, Congress sought to block sales of Boeing civilian airliners to Iran worth $16.6 billion even though it would have cost thousands of American jobs. Congress has been trying to sabotage the Iran nuclear deal ever since it was signed, putting American national interests on a collision course with those of Israel’s right.

But now President Trump says he’s found a new reason to sabotage the six-power deal: Iran, insists Trump, supports ‘terrorism’ and has bad intentions. This charge has been around for decades, cited by Israel as a compelling reason to attack Iran because Tehran supports the ‘terrorist’ Lebanese movement Hezbollah and the Palestinian movement Hamas.

The ‘terrorist’ label is slapped onto all enemies of Israel and the United States. It’s a handy, meaningless sobriquet that automatically denies those so named political or moral justice.

I was with the Israel army when it invaded Lebanon in 1982 and saw first-hand how its arrogance turned formerly pro-Israel Shia Lebanese in the south into anti-Israel fighters. Israel actually encouraged and may have secretly financed the growth of Hezbollah and Hamas hoping they would drain support from the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) and Lebanon’s Amal militia.

Israel hates Hamas and Hezbollah and is determined to eradicate them. The principal supporter of Hamas and Hezbollah has long been Syria. Large parts of Syria have now been destroyed by a US-engineered uprising and bands of Saudi-financed mercenaries. That has left Iran as the main supporter of Hamas and Hezbollah, and a principal backer of Syria’s Assad government. The PLO has become a puppet of Israel and the US.

So Israel is now determined to destroy Hezbollah in its strongholds in Lebanon and then crush Hamas with Trump’s blessing, so ending any dreams of a Palestinian state. Iran is now being blamed for all Washington’s problems in the Mideast. So war fever against Iran is again mounting.

Interestingly, Iran, which has 79.1 million people, is not cowering before this threat. Like North Korea, Iran’s air force and navy are sitting ducks. But Iran has strong infantry, some 500,000 men including Revolutionary Guards. They are armed with outdated weapons but showed redoubtable fighting spirit in the Iran-Iraq War. Any US invasion would be met by fierce resistance.

An Iranian commander told me, ‘let the Americans come and invade. They will break their teeth on Iran. Then we will drive them out of the Mideast.”

Boastful, yes, but not impossible. Iran could prove more than the US can handle. President Trump does not know this yet and is still having fun with his new military toys. Problem is, he just can’t decide where to attack first.

Copyright Eric S. Margolis 2017

This post is in: Iran, USA


  1. Vincent Castigliola says:

    Despite my disappointment with the appalling transformation of candidate Trump to president Trump in the area of foreign policy, I do not see how one could regret voting for Trump over Secretary Clinton.
    In response to the president’s missile attack on Syria, Ms Clinton’s only criticism of that criminal act is that he should have undertaken many more deadly attacks.
    I suppose one could appreciate her candor; however, to vote for, or even speak in favor of the woman who provoked the destruction of Libya, the death by impalement of its leader and then boasted: “We came, We saw, He died” is beyond what I consider reasonable.
    During my years as an elementary student at Catholic school over 50 years ago, we were taught to pray for the conversion of Russia away from atheist communism. It took time, but it worked. Russia’s government now embraces Christianity. Perhaps we should pray for the conversion of Donald Trump away from neo-con/lib intervention and wars of aggression.

  2. Sunny69 says:

    Pat Buchanan and all the other Paleo-cons who spent so much ink defending and supporting Trump got played for suckers. Trump has been exposed as just as another Neo-con Republican beholden to the Israel lobby.

  3. More ramblings:
    Funny that the Americans are quick to blame the Syrians or the Russians for the use of chemical weapons in Syria… and, not offer any definitive proof. Chemical weapons work by paralysing the muscles and causing suffocation. Such is the use of the MOAB that was used in Afghanistan. It depletes the oxygen and causes suffocation… not much difference, but the American press ‘laps it up’ as a new means of killing the ‘enemy’.
    MOAB is an acronym for Mother Of All Bombs, or in the Donald’s case could stand for Mother of All Boobs, Buffoons, Bullies, etc. (Take your pick). They used it, with American qualified success, in Afghanistan against the Taliban… not identifying the casualties as men, women, or children… but, all terrorists. The manner of death was not stipulated… suffocation, exploded lungs and internal organ failure due to the vacuum created, etc. All gruesome manners of death. There was once a push to have this type of weapon banned due to the harm inflicted in an indiscriminate manner.
    Within a week the Taliban struck back at one of the outlying military posts and killed 140 approx Afghan soldiers. The MOAB (not specifying Trump or Bomb) struck a really ‘deadly’ blow. Such is the American way of war as heralded in the press. Other than minor setbacks, we are nearly winning.
    The Donald uses this as an example to the Chinese and North Koreans with the statement, “We really mean business, no more pussyfooting around.”
    The only outcome is destabilising an already unstable situation and advancing the doomsday clock another minute or so.
    If the North Korean leader had shoes, he would be quaking in them… but, they didn’t show any pictures of his feet, so we will never know. You don’t push an unstable (I think) leader to the wall with an ultimatum. I don’t know if Kim’s that unstable, or, if it’s the press who paints him as such. You have to admire his ‘spunk’ for ‘standing up to the big American bully’. Almost a little like Castro. In the event of a sudden attack by the Americans, he has nothing to lose by unleashing all his missiles with terrible results. I don’t think the Americans can selectively disable North Korea and that beginning is quite possible. The ending can also be as unpredictable.
    I’m surprised with the challenges in the South China Sea area that China is being so complacent. They are maybe going to let things unfold, and, pick up the pieces… although any nuclear activity could have a negative impact on them.
    The Middle East is another real ‘can of worms’. The Americans has systematically destroyed Syria, Iran by embargoes, Iraq, Libya, Sudan, Egypt, etc. and totally destabilised the area to the benefit of Israel and perhaps Saudi Arabia. Trump is talking about ‘undoing’ the agreement with Iran that was part of a multi-national endeavour.
    Prior to the election it appeared that Trump would ‘dig in his heels’ when it came to Israel… but, such is not the case.
    The UN has condemned the new West Bank expansion of 15,000 more housing units, but, to no avail. Time to rewrite the UN Charter… increase the number of members on the security council and no veto rights… by majority decision only. The UN offices should be on neutral property, donated by some nation so there is not disruption of attendance due to Visas, etc.
    In dealing with Russia and China, the Donald wants everyone to pay their fair share with NATO. This organisation is an extension of the US, and why would anyone want to contribute to their benefit. The list goes on…

  4. So, Eric, since you supported Trump’s run for the Republican nomination, can we now assume that you regret having backed him? Needless to say, Trump is a less than stable person and personally unsuited to be President. These days, it’s hard to say who is more unstable and the bigger threat to the world – Trump or Kim Jong-un.

  5. Mike Smith says:

    Perhaps Trump acting all crazy will end up being a good thing, a large part of the geopolitical problem is the US has had way too much influence around the world where sane nations follow the lead of the Americans over the dictates of common sense and / or the wishes of their own people. The crazier Trump goes, maybe the better the chance of breaking this trend once and for all. NATO may well survive without the US trying to pull them into conflicts around the globe, Iran may do better buying Airbus, Russia can counter the Saudi funded IS forces in Syria… Picture a new world where the UN has some actual influence rather than acting the pawn, trade is used to build ties rather than as a tool of conflict, and the neo whatevers in Israel and the US are treated like the spoiled children they act like and are given a time out in the corner of the room.

  6. Iran is sponsoring terrorism? Every terrorist group today was either created by America or its allies directly or as a result of American policy.
    To use the line from the anime Blood + “America is manufacturing enemies in order to increase its influence on the world.”

  7. Joe from Canada says:

    And Americans could have chosen Bernie Sanders….
    Poor America.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.