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OpEdNews Op Eds    H2'ed 10/15/19

Trump's Simple Re-Election Gambit--War With Iran

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After being re-elected in 2004, Bush stood before the American people talking about earning some "political capital" he intended to use. That "political capital" was privatization of Social Security and other Republican agenda items.

Tensions between Iran and the United States intensified last month after attacks on Saudi Arabian oil facilities for which Yemen's Iran-backed Houthi rebels took responsibility.

Tehran denies any involvement.

The Trump administration nevertheless blames Iran.

This is part of a pattern.

In June, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo pronounced Iran was responsible for the alleged limpet-mine attack on two oil tankers earlier that day in the Gulf of Oman, showing grainy video supposedly featuring members of Iran's Revolutionary Guard removing an unexploded mine from one of the tanker's side.

This was the only "evidence" he provided, and he fielded no questions.

Iran denied any involvement and accused the U.S. of trying to sabotage diplomacy.

This comes conveniently one month after former National Security Adviser John Bolton claimed, again without evidence, Iran launched ballistic missiles at small Iranian sailing vessels, unlikely due to the ships' sizes and lack of previous ship-based missile tests.

In May, Mother Jones reported:

"Tensions between Iran and the United States have been high for weeks, beginning with a menacing video Bolton released in February targeting the Iranian supreme leader and reached a boil last week when, according to the New York Times, he ordered the Pentagon to prepare to send as many as 120,000 troops to the Middle East to counter Iran."

Pompeo also blamed Iran for an assault in Kabul, Afghanistan, for which the Taliban claimed responsibility.

The Washington Post reported this is yet another sign of the Trump administration... itching for war."

In an MSNBC interview, Former State Department spokesman Marie Harf stated Donald Trump's rhetoric toward Iran in recent weeks is similar to what the Bush administration told us in the run-up to the Iraq war.

She said:

"They're cherry-picking intelligence, they're upping what they consider to be the threat. And, look, there is a real threat. I don't want to downplay that. But what worries me the most is that something like this happens, or the Iranians do something else that is a provocation and we get locked in this cycle of escalation where John Bolton--don't forget John Bolton is still there--Mike Pompeo push President Trump so he feels like he can't back down and then we're in this cycle of escalation that, quite frankly, could end very badly. There is no reason to go war with Iran today. We can counter them in many, many other ways. The Trump administration doesn't seem to have a strategy to do that and that is scary to me."

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Ted Millar is a writer and teacher. His work has been in featured in myriad literary journals, including Straight Forward Poetry, Better Than Starbucks, the Broke Bohemian, Caesura, Circle Show, Cactus Heart, Third Wednesday, and The Voices (more...)
 

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