15 thoughts on “U.S.-Iran Standoff: Iran 1-U.S. 0 – Tikun Olam תיקון עולם إصلاح العالم
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  1. Amongst Donald Trump’s many infantile traits…

    Amongst Donald Trump’s many infantile traits is a belief that having been paid twenty five million dollars to start a war with Iran by Sheldon Adelson, he has to at least pretend to try.

    …let’s hope he welches on the debt. The sole consolation is that Hillary Clinton was even more thoroughly bribed, and had she won, this would have all gone off much more smoothly, and we’d already be fighting the most disastrous and evil war in our history.

  2. “Iran is not a one-man dictatorship. Policies are not devised or revised on a whim. The political structure in Iran is complex and carefully balanced”

    You must be kidding!
    Have you heard of the supreme leader of Iran, Ali Khamenei? He has been holding that position for the last 30 years. No election for this post!


    1. @Yoni Levy: being the “Supreme Ieader” does not mean you are dictator. That’s why there’s a president and Majlis, all of which are their own independent power centers. And there is indeed a committee which appoints the Supreme Leader.

    1. @Eunice: as I’ve said repeatedly here, do NOT post a comment without reading every article linked in my post. I’ve linked to articles in which Trump administration and military officials said Bolton and his cronies misinterpreted the intelligence, and that Iran was assuming a defensive posture against a U.S. attack, and that no orders had been given to attack the u.s. unless it attacked Iran. Read those articles now, and do not comment further in this thread

  3. I have dutifully read every article you linked, and I do not dispute anything you said about Bolton and/or his reliance on faulty intelligence. Nor do I disagree with anything you’ve said about Trump’s step down and his appearance of weakness.

    So let’s move on to my question, which was, ‘who fired their weapons first, Iran or the United States?

    Also, who was behind these very sophisticated attacks on the oil tankers, Iran or another Middle Eastern State?

    And BTW, ‘god king’ Khameni’s powers include, but are not limited to, appointing the head of the judiciary, six of the members of the powerful Guardian Council, the commanders of all the armed forces, Friday prayer leaders and the head of radio and TV. He also confirms the president’s election.

    Iran’s Fearless Leader was chosen by the clerics who make up the Assembly of Experts over 30 years ago.


    1. @ Eunice Kearnes: As I write these blog posts, I use different platforms to edit them. I’d added a link to an important Wall Street Journal article to this post, but the link never displayed in the published article. Or I had the link in my clipboard and somehow never pasted it into the post. At any rate, now, I’ve added the link and I’m quoting here from it. This article, based on important Trump administration and U.S. intelligence sources rebuts the claim that Iran is engaged in provocative or aggressive moves:

      Intelligence collected by the U.S. government shows Iran’s leaders believe the U.S. planned to attack them, prompting preparation by Tehran for possible counterstrikes, according to one interpretation of the information, people familiar with the matter said.

      That view of the intelligence could help explain why Iranian forces and their allies took action that was seen as threatening to U.S. forces in Iraq and elsewhere, prompting a U.S. military buildup in the Persian Gulf region and a drawdown of U.S. diplomats in Iraq.

      …One U.S. official said the view of Iran’s movements and actions as defensive in nature came from new intelligence in recent days. This unspecified intelligence has affected how American officials see Iran’s actions, the official said.

  4. Your ability to broaden or narrow definitions to serve your ideology always amazes me.
    A man who disapproves political candidates on a regular basis is not a dictator b/c the people voted to the short list he provided?
    And I guess he is doing an excellent job if he is able to keep it for 30 years.

    1. @ Yoni Levy: Khamenei himself does not approve or disapprove candidates. There is a committee of clerics which does so.

      But claiming Iran isn’t democratic is a fool’s errand. For every taint you offer I can offer as many against Israel’s purported democracy.

      Israel is an oligarchic ethno state featuring Jewish supremacy as its watchword. Iran is a clerical quasi-dictatorship with some democratic underpinnings. Both are corrupt. Both are garrison states. Both are theocracies.

  5. @Richard

    Let’s try to sort this out.

    A United States aircraft carrier task force is making it’s way to the Persian Gulf on a routine visit.

    Iranian Military Intelligence misinterprets this routine aircraft carrier visit as a prelude to an attack on Iran.

    Iran’s General Suleiman orders his proxy forces to go on a war footing in preparation of an American ‘attack’ on Iran.

    The Mossad accurately informs the United States about Suleiman’s orders (to the proxies), and the United States orders it’s forces in the Middle East to prepare for possible Iranian attacks.

    Iran than attacks four, unarmed civilian oil tankers near the Straits of Hormuz.

    A rocket is fired into Baghdad’s ‘Green Zone’.

    You know, Richard, this is a far cry from your earlier claim that, “Bolton Sounds Drumbeat of War Based on Tenuous Israeli Claim of Iran Threat”.

    Am I wrong to say that?

    1. @ Eunice Kearnes: First, I asked you two comments ago not to continue posting in this thread. Clearly, you either didn’t read my comment to you or you ignored that request. You must read my responses fully and accept what I ask when I do so. If you do such a thing again you will be subject to moderation. So let’s make clear that this was your last comment in this thread.

      A United States aircraft carrier task force is making it’s way to the Persian Gulf on a routine visit.

      No, nothing about the Iran-U.S. standoff is ‘routine.’ The carrier’s deployment is part of the U.S. effort to intimidate Iran. There is nothing “routine” about our campaign against Iran. But even if we accept the claim that the carrier’s tour was routine, it became anything but routine once Bolton stated clearly that the carrier group deployment was being speeded up because of a so-called imminent threat from Iran. He made clear that the carrier group was tasked with retailiating against such an Iranian attack. Not routine. Not at all. This “threat” is now questioned even by Trump officials and U.S. intelligence.

      Iran’s General Suleiman orders his proxy forces to go on a war footing in preparation of an American ‘attack’ on Iran.

      No, if Suleiman had ordered “war footing” it would mean he planned to attack the U.S. first. He didn’t. He clearly said to his allies that he believed the U.S. may be planning, or is planning to attack Iran. He asked them to prepare to defend Iran in case of such an attack. He clearly would not have told them to attack first, because that would give the U.S. an excuse to launch such a war against Iran.

      The Mossad accurately informs the United States about Suleiman’s orders

      False again. Either the Mossad told Bolton that Iran planned to attack the U.S.; or Bolton interpreted the Mossad as claiming this. This is absolutely not what Suleiman said to anyone. So either the Mossad or Bolton (or both) got it entirely wrong. And now you are compounding the error.

      Iran than attacks four, unarmed civilian oil tankers

      No again. No one has proven who attacked those tankers. And you can be damn sure that U.S. explosives experts have been scouring those ships and attempting to pin the attack on Iran. Yet they haven’t. There have been anonymous claims offering no evidence, saying Iran or the Houthis are the likely culprits. But no one has offered any evidence. And in cases like this you only accept cold, hard evidence before agreeing something is fact.

      Am I wrong to say that?

      Everything about your comment and most of what else you say is wrong.

  6. ” Both are corrupt. Both are garrison states. Both are theocracies.

    I know you do not like succinct answers but I can make a few points without over doing it.
    Is there any political system/government that is not corrupt? Is not the US a prime example of this esp now that the Dems are undergoing מתגלה ערותם/pudenda nudata. This does not absolve Israel for her corruption but as the saying goes ‘don’t throw stones if you are in a glass house’.

    As far as ‘theocracy goes, that is an absurd statement. If you are referring to the forming of the Israeli government and the mandates that the religious parties have it was achieved by a voting/democratic process. One could correctly opine that the election means should maybe reformed to a diff method of elections but if you remember they once tried two ballots, one for the PM and another for the various parties. But it seems somebody liked it.

    But ‘theocracy’, you are ill informed or ill opinionated.

    As far as what Yoni says “Your ability to broaden or narrow definitions to serve your ideology always amazes me.”
    You always use ‘pilpul’ to change the simple meaning of things.
    If you are well informed of the Sephardi Torah world aside the bad feeling the Sephardim have against the Ashkenazim is the Ashkenazi ‘pilpul’ platform. You can read about it almost on a daily basis from David Shasha who you have mentioned in the past.
    So your answers are casuistic at best.

    1. @ natasha:

      I know you do not like succinct answers but I can make a few points without over doing it.

      I don’t know if you a non-native English speaker, but you’ve reversed the meaning of ‘succinct.’ Look it up. Or else you added a “not” that shouldn’t be there.

      Is there any political system/government that is not corrupt?

      Nice try. But no luck. There are many western democratic countries which are relatively transparent and corruption-free. LOok up Transparency International and you’ll find a ranking. I’ve written about these reports. Do a Google search and find them. Israel fares poorly in them because it is a corrupt country.

      now that the Dems are undergoing מתגלה ערותם/pudenda nudata

      I have no idea what you’re talking about, and I know the Hebrew and Latin you use. But you still aren’t making any sense.

      As for Israel being a theocracy: it is. The Orthodox have a monopoly not only over religious affairs to the detriment of non-Orthodox Jew and non-Jews, but they have a monopoly over the most important social institutions including birth, death, marriage and divorce. They dictate public policy in numerous cases. They milk the public coffers for the benefit of their own Jewish sects. It’s an unholy, corrupt mess.

      The whole Ashkenazi-Sefardi thing is an absolute non-sequitur. Do not stray off topic. Make sure your comments deal directly with the subject of the post.

  7. Four decades of trying … my name is John Bolton.

    The same old … Britain in step with the Americans in the Middle East. Remember 1953 and British Petroleum!

    To thwart communism, the western alliance and ME proxy states set up CENTO in the Treaty of Baghdad. An important range of these front states are now part of the Shia Crescent from Teheran through Baghdad, Damascus into Beirut. Turkey with Erdogan the last state to turn its back on NATO, a failed “defensive” shield for Europe. The MB state of Qatar has already been ousted from the Sunni alliance and replaced by Netanyahu’s Israel. Trump-Salman-Netanyahu targeting Teheran for all personal political reasons.

    From my post elsewhere – Iraq’s Political Parties Aim to Oust U.S. Troops (March 2019).

    I imagine the American NSC chief Bolton felt it the right time to move some hardware into the Persian Gulf.

  8. Some guy named Matt Brodsky was a guest for a debate on France24 – madness coming from his mouth. I had to find out more …

    About Jim Hanson, director of the Security Studies Group (SSG), a little-known think tank staffed by former employees of Frank Gaffney’s Center for Security Policy.

    Author of Trump’s Iran Regime Change Blueprint is Actually a Right-Wing Troll | MintPress News |

    PS The family name Brodsky is well known by Richard and his writings on this site.

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