Monday, January 13, 2020

People Get Hurt

Mourning Again,

 Over the weekend we heard, from Iran, that Iran shot down a civilian flight, taking off from Tehran, shortly after the Iranian military responded to US assassination of of General Suleimani, on a diplomatic peace mission to Baghdad, as requested by President Trump. 
It took a few days, but Iran admitted to it. 
Missile defenses were on hair trigger for US retaliation, and People Got Hurt. 
Flashing back...
On July 3, 1988, in the late days of the Iran-Iraq war, the USS Vincennes mistakenly shot down Iran Air Flight 655 over Iranian waters and killed 290 people.
 In the days immediately following the incident, US President Ronald Reagan issued a written diplomatic note to the Iranian government, expressing deep regret.[15] However, the United States continued to insist that Vincennes was acting in self-defense in international waters.
​ ​In 1996, the governments of the United States and Iran reached a settlement at the International Court of Justice which included the statement "...the United States recognized the aerial incident of 3 July 1988 as a terrible human tragedy and expressed deep regret over the loss of lives caused by the incident..."[16] As part of the settlement, even though the U.S. government did not admit legal liability or formally apologize to Iran, it still agreed to pay US$61.8 million on an ex gratia basis in compensation to the families of the Iranian victims.

 Yet another video of Democratic primary front runner Joe Biden passionately defending the 2003 Iraq invasion and occupation has resurfaced and is going viral. In it he even sings George W. Bush's praises at a moment which came a mere few months after the now infamous "Mission Accomplished" stunt aboard the aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln.
 This comes in a campaign where he's lied repeatedly about his leading role in pushing the war authorization through the Senate five months before the March 2003 invasion, seeking to distance himself and methodically conceal the facts now that public opinion has long shifted. It also has resurfaced at a moment John Kerry is currently making the rounds on major networks defending Biden against Bernie Sanders’ criticism of Biden's clear pro-war record.
 At a crucial moment Biden's speech, delivered at the Hawkish DC Brookings Institution in July 2003 actually slammed anti-war Democrats and simultaneously upheld Bush and his disastrous war as "bold and popular" and promised further support to the neocon administration.

Evidence portrays the plot to assassinate General Suleimani originating with John Bolton, then National Security Advisor, and being canned by Trump as being excessive to the shoot down of a drone last June. "No American was killed". That became to loaded plan, awaiting a trigger, and a means to execute.
 For the past 18 months, officials said, there had been discussions about whether to target General Suleimani. Figuring that it would be too difficult to hit him in Iran, officials contemplated going after him during one of his frequent visits to Syria or Iraq and focused on developing agents in seven different entities to report on his movements — the Syrian Army, the Quds Force in Damascus, Hezbollah in Damascus, the Damascus and Baghdad airports and the Kataib Hezbollah and Popular Mobilization forces in Iraq...
​ ​Defense Secretary Mark Esper presented a series of response options to the president two weeks ago, including killing Soleimani. Esper presented the pros and cons of such an operation but made it clear that he was in favor of taking out Soleimani, officials said.
​ ​Trump signed off and it further developed from there.

​Under the US-backed Shah, the only places the Savak Secret Police did not closely monitor were the mosques, so ...​
 ..Anti-government protests over Iran's mistaken shoot-down of UIA Flight 752 continued on Monday for a third straight day, following the regime's admission of responsibility on Saturday.
 During the protests, which erupted out of anger over the regime's initial lies about Flight 752 (it initially insisted that a "mechanical error" was responsible despite video evidence suggesting a missile strike), Iranian security forces fired both live ammunition and tear gas into crowds of angry demonstrators.  
 Videos posted to social media on Sunday recorded gunshots in the vicinity of protests in Tehran’s Azadi Square. The wounded could be seen being carried off on stretchers as riot police fired what looked like rubber bullets. Other videos showed riot police beating protesters with batons, while others nearby screamed "Don’t beat them!"
 Moreover, shouts of "Death to the dictator" could be heard in footage circulating on social media. It showed protesters shouting, directing their fury at Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and the system of clerical rule.

But wait, there's more. The Iranian General helping Yemenis fight Saudi Arabia survived.
 On very day of the US drone strike on Baghdad International Airport which took out Soleimani and his convoy, which included Iraq's top paramilitary commander Abu Mahdi al-Mohandes, a separate but parallel operation was taking place in Yemen at the same time against a "top financier and key commander in Iran’s elite Quds Force who has been active in Yemen," per the Post's description.
 US officials now say they also attempted to kill Islamic Revolutionary Guard commander Gen. Abdul Reza Shahlai on the same day (Jan.2), but failed.

Military "head-fake" or "wardrobe-malfunction"? 
Is this what Trumpian-de-escalation looks like?
 Just like that, it was over. General Mark Milley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff called it ‘a kerfuffle’. A letter was sent to their Iraqi peers that the U.S was repositioning troops out of Iraq in accordance with legislation from Iraq ending the U.S military presence in the war-torn country, and suddenly then it was retracted by higher-ups. Running interference, Mark Esper backed Milley and said it was ‘an honest mistake’. It all went down within a day of the irrational assassination of Iran’s Soleimani.

In what states is it legal to "smoke Biden" these days?
"He Needs To Stop": Democrats Freaking Out After Sanders Says Trump Will Smoke Biden
​ ​According to those complaining, the 78-year-old Sanders will make it harder for Democrats to unify around a nominee after months of taking flack from their own side of the aisle - despite the fact that a Friday poll has him in the lead, and that his no-holds-barred approach may earn him the nomination.
​ ​"He needs to stop," said one Democratic strategist who is unaffiliated with any candidates. "It's not helpful and it actually hurts the party. It’s like he didn't learn his lesson the last time. It’s incredibly short-sighted and terrible."

​Maybe John Bolton will run for president on the American Cannibals ticket. 
Peace-Negotiations must be stopped!
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani told the visiting emir of Qatar that de-escalation is the "only solution" to the regional crisis sparked by the US killing of Iran's top general, Qasem Soleimani, according to AFP citing the emirate's ruler.
​ ​"This visit comes at a critical time in the region," said Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani, adding "We agreed... that the only solution to these crises is de-escalation from everyone and dialogue."
​Other than being made a lesson to scare everybody else again, it's a really good deal. 
Let's give it a try!
Is Iraq About To Become A Chinese Client State?

​Drilling For Dollars​

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