As was expected, political posturing and maneuvering started after the events in Iraq and Iran and it started in earnest. Suddenly Pentagon's Chief admits what anyone with an IQ higher than room temperature knew all along:
WASHINGTON (AP) — Defense Secretary Mark Esper explicitly said Sunday that he had seen no hard evidence that four American embassies had been under possible threat when President Donald Trump authorized the targeting of Iran’s top commander, raising questions about the scale of the threat described by Trump last week. As the administration struggled with its justification for the drone strike that killed Gen. Qassem Soleimani, Esper and other officials tried to refocus attention on voices of dissent in Iran.
Well, duh. Then the other "secret" (obvious from the git go) details begin to emerge:
United States officials used a secret backchannel to communicate with Iran in recent days, sending messages via Swiss intermediaries warning Iran not to retaliate so harshly that it would further provoke President Donald Trump, The New York Times reported Saturday. The messages came not long after the Trump administration authorized strikes that killed the top Iranian commander Qassem Soleimani, immediately escalating tensions between the US and Iran. The Wall Street Journal reported earlier Saturday morning that the Trump administration sent an encrypted fax to Iran just hours after killing Soleimani, warning not to escalate.
At this stage one has to pause for a moment and ask oneself a question: how did this "warning not to retaliate so harshly that it would provoke President" look to Iranians? Right, as an open admission of weakness and lack of desire to do real fighting. Moreover, if to believe reports (and they do seem plausible):
Trump initially passed on killing Soleimani in late December, opting instead for airstrikes that killed 25 members of an Iran-backed Iraqi militia. But when Trump watched TV coverage of militia supporters attacking the perimeter of the massive U.S. Embassy in Baghdad, "he's thinking about Benghazi" and "he's also thinking about the 1979 attack on the American Embassy in Iran that led to the hostage crisis," the Times' Helene Cooper recounts. "He's getting more and more angry, according to his aides, and then he calls for his menu of options again, and this time, he picks the extreme option," killing Soleimani.
So, what? I repeat this ad nauseam: United States doesn't handle states and people who are not afraid of her that well, to put it mildly. Obviously, Iran's violation of the sanctity of diplomatic institution such as US Embassy in 1978 is not an event to be admired, but the United States which bombed China's Embassy in Belgrade in 1999 (by "mistake", of course), among other things, not to mention having her embassies existing primarily (emphasis on primarily) for sabotage and spying activity, is in no position to complain too much. Trump, still being affected by a 41 year old event in Tehran, is a symptom of sorts, of a person who really has a very tentative grasp on the history and, especially so, geopolitics. Obviously, DJT doesn't know what US Consulate in Benghasi was actually doing. A hint, very little "diplomacy".
Yet, this all also demonstrates an appalling level of competency, or, rather, lack thereof, at which National Security teams operate in the White House. Trump is not really a new phenomenon in this respect; of course, we all recall, completely fake and "cooked", "intelligence" which lead to the invasion of Iraq, we know what a stream of liquid dung called "intelligence" was poured into the White House prior to gang rape of Serbia, in the end, these were all those "intelligence" and "diplomacy" people who convinced Obama to unleash a suicidal events in Ukraine in 2013-14. And the system continues to operate like that in D.C. Trump might be more unhinged and illiterate than previous residents of the White House, but he really differs very little in his delusion from them. He is merely a symptom of a much more serious illness which afflicts US political class, "deep state", "elite", what have you--feel free to call it anyway you want.
Assassination of General Soleimani and what followed is just the latest in a folly which replicates itself non-stop at the US political top. Sure, "warnings" sent to Iranians do not look that good and do not add to the American prestige in the region and around the globe, but the again--what did? As I write non-stop, the problem is systemic: it is one of a complete lack of knowledge and understanding of the outside world it is also a very low, if any, level of self-awareness. To make a point: try as one might, one will be hard-pressed to find any competent and at least partially correct geopolitical forecast which emerged from the deep recesses of US national security and political "science" think-tankdom. When being consistently wrong in forecasts and calculating consequences of own actions becomes the only outcome system produces, it is the sign of a system which is completely broken. It is broken. But if some delirium from white board geopolitical "academe" has an impact which measures in years, such as purely risible pseudo-scientific treatises of "The End of History" or "The Grand Chessboard" on the level of POTUS justifications as such are simply inadmissible:
US President Donald Trump has lashed out against the “fake news media” and their “Democrat partners” over criticism of his administration’s decision to assassinate Iranian general Qassem Soleimani.The president claimed in tweets marred with misspellings that it does not matter if Soleimani presented an imminent threat to the US, something he had said previously to defend the assassination, because of the general’s “horrible past.”
Yes, "horrible past" such as cooperating with the United States in fighting ISIS in Syria and Afghanistan. Anyone wonders then why the US is non-agreement capable? But if DJT is a New York real estate shyster who was able, due to his entertainment industry experience, to deliver sound and attractive ideas written for him by Stephen Miller convincingly, one should not forget that in this sense Obama or Clinton (Bill), let alone W were just slightly more polished on the outside liars and incompetents. I will parrot myself yet again here: US political class is incapable to produce real statesmen, but even in that, bad as it is, it also lost, due to corruption and the death of meritocracy, any ability to produce any sort of competence. Enough to take a look at US Congress who work night and day to parade the United States globally as a freak show and do all in their power to NOT address real serious, some of them actually dangerous, problems facing the United States.
Recent events in Iran and Iraq are just another, however very significant, symptoms of Empire's decay and departure. I want, however, to clarify one thing. While Iran is a very important regional state and not for once I praised Iranians' courage and dedication, I am completely aware of the fact, of which I wrote not for once, that Iran is her own "thing". Russia may, in the words of Patrushev, declare Iran Russia's ally, for Iran, however, Russia is not an ally at all and Russia will remain just another state which could be used for Iran's own purposes. Nothing wrong with that--everyone is doing this, but Iran is not Russia's ally, whatever that means. So, Russian-Iranian relations are complex and we are yet to see how the potential of these relations could be realized. Especially since Russian and Iranian visions of the Middle East differ. Moreover, while Middle East IS the battle-space between US and Iran, this battle-space is just another theater of war the United States wages against Russia and China. We MUST NOT lose the sight of this important fact--the fate of the world depends on global realignment and shift of power poles (in progress), of which Iran provided yet another indication, and the way increasingly irrational Empire and her suicidal-homicidal tendencies can be kept in check.