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Tags Iran incidents , Qasem Soleimani , Trump controversies , US-Iran relations

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Old 3rd January 2020, 12:12 PM   #121
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Originally Posted by Venom View Post
I saw news about Ayatollah Ali Khamenei vowing revenge but it displayed a picture of Ayatollah Khomeini who died 30 years ago.
Maybe he's pulling a Palpatine!
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Old 3rd January 2020, 12:12 PM   #122
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A lot of stupidity from both sides of the political spectrum in this thread.
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Old 3rd January 2020, 12:13 PM   #123
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Originally Posted by dudalb View Post
I shed no tears for Qassam, but taking him out has excalated the situation to the pointe where a strong response from Iran is almost a certainity.
Hope you will be just as gung ho when the body bags start coming home.
Nobody ever worries about how Iran keeps escalating, or how Iran is going to provoke a properly strong response with their shenanigans.
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Old 3rd January 2020, 12:17 PM   #124
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Originally Posted by Captain_Swoop View Post
Pompeo says the strike disrupted and 'imminent attack'
I wonder if it was going to happen within 45 minutes?
By all accounts this was the kind of guy, you could kill him any time and it would disrupt two or three imminent attacks.
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Old 3rd January 2020, 12:19 PM   #125
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Originally Posted by Loss Leader View Post
There's been a lot of nonsense already in this thread, so let's just get some basic facts out of the way:

Iran is currently funding, arming and coordinating anti-government militias in Iraq, Syria, Lebanon and Israel. These groups have as their purpose the creation of a Shiite state throughout the Middle East. They have been engaging US forces since at least 2002 to be conservative and really since the before the 1980's.

We already are at war with Iran. We have been for decades. Does this attack bring the Iran/US conflict to the forefront instead of allowing shadow politics and proxy wars? Yes. Does it change much of anything? No. Why was there an Iranian General in Iraq? Why was the US embassy in the green zone in Iraq under siege from Iranian-funded protesters?

I absolutely abhor targeted assassinations. They are never appropriate. And if the US took action without appropriate notice to Democrats cleared for such information, that is an attack by the White House on the institutions of our democracy (it remains unclear to me what the facts are regarding that). However, nothing much has changed. Frankly, I see two positive outcomes:

1. The role of Iran in causing violence across the Middle East will be highlighted in such a way that it cannot be conveniently ignored.

2. A drop in oil production in the ME (if such a thing happens) will help push America towards energy independence.

My major concern is that Iran, which cannot take on the US militarily, will strike civilians in Israel out of sheer impotent rage.
This is actually a more complex issue than it might appear. Some evidence (if dated) that Iran could launch a significant attack on USA Naval ships:

https://www.newsweek.com/us-defeat-i...r-navy-1429348

A more current and complete discussion of what an open war with Iran might look like:

https://www.militarytimes.com/news/2...uld-look-like/

I think Iran could easily launch very disruptive operations on middle east oil production and shipping, make the USA's presence in the middle east very costly for us, and achieve propaganda victories even if they cannot achieve true military dominance. Also, and most important, what does the end game look like? What do we hope to achieve when it is all over? USA occupation of Iran? A pro-USA Iran and all terrorist actions ended?

Of course Israel is always at risk but they are relatively tough targets and easily angered. I wonder if Iran would much prefer targeting USA interests throughout the world wherever convenient. Especially soft targets.

In thinking about it I also wonder if "The role of Iran in causing violence across the Middle East will be highlighted in such a way that it cannot be conveniently ignored." would not earn them more points than they might lose. A lot of people in the world hate the USA and Iran being the face of USA resistance/USA targeting may work to their advantage.

Last edited by Giordano; 3rd January 2020 at 12:22 PM.
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Old 3rd January 2020, 12:24 PM   #126
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The weakest and strategically most important target for the Iranians is the Straights of Hormuz. Americans may soon see higher has prices. They have shale oil but the rest of the world does not have the same production.
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Old 3rd January 2020, 12:28 PM   #127
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Iran "cannot take on the US militarily" Loss Leader says, but what about with help from Russia and/or China?
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Old 3rd January 2020, 12:30 PM   #128
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I am afraid I am seeing a certain amount of "The Enemy of Enemy Is My Friend" mentality at work in this thread.
I despise Trump, and think his action was ill considered and very dangerous, but too much sympathy for Qassam and his Iranian bosses here.
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Old 3rd January 2020, 12:32 PM   #129
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Originally Posted by Venom View Post
Iran "cannot take on the US militarily" Loss Leader says, but what about with help from Russia and/or China?
Iran has no intention of waging a conventional war against the US. I think terrorism of some sort will be their retaliation.
Frankly, Loss Leader's whole post shows a limited understanding of the history of warfare.
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Old 3rd January 2020, 12:36 PM   #130
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Originally Posted by dudalb View Post
Iran has no intention of waging a conventional war against the US. I think terrorism of some sort will be their retaliation.
Frankly, Loss Leader's whole post shows a limited understanding of the history of warfare.
Unless some other foreign power intervened, it seems clear that the US military could easily destroy the state of Iran, just as it easily destroyed the state of Iraq. Our military is very good at achieving military objectives.

We have never been able to win the peace in these situations. What does a post victory Iran look like? Does anyone have any idea what to do after we've killed all the bad guys? How do we prevent Iran from slipping into a lawless hellscape like all the other places where regime change has failed spectacularly?

I think it's pretty clear we could achieve all our military objectives and still come out much worse than we are now, just as we did in Iraq.
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Old 3rd January 2020, 12:38 PM   #131
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Originally Posted by Giordano View Post
This is actually a more complex issue than it might appear. Some evidence (if dated) that Iran could launch a significant attack on USA Naval ships:

https://www.newsweek.com/us-defeat-i...r-navy-1429348

A more current and complete discussion of what an open war with Iran might look like:

https://www.militarytimes.com/news/2...uld-look-like/

I think Iran could easily launch very disruptive operations on middle east oil production and shipping, make the USA's presence in the middle east very costly for us, and achieve propaganda victories even if they cannot achieve true military dominance. Also, and most important, what does the end game look like? What do we hope to achieve when it is all over? USA occupation of Iran? A pro-USA Iran and all terrorist actions ended?

Of course Israel is always at risk but they are relatively tough targets and easily angered. I wonder if Iran would much prefer targeting USA interests throughout the world wherever convenient. Especially soft targets.

In thinking about it I also wonder if "The role of Iran in causing violence across the Middle East will be highlighted in such a way that it cannot be conveniently ignored." would not earn them more points than they might lose. A lot of people in the world hate the USA and Iran being the face of USA resistance/USA targeting may work to their advantage.
Iran is a problem from hell for the US.
Iran ,let's be blunt, has been a major sponsor of terrorism in the Mideast from the fall of the Shah, and it's ambitions for sort of a new Islamic Persian Empire are pretty damn apparent. Problem is they have been smart enough, so far, to avoid any action that will bring the wrath of the US down on them and alienate some of their European defenders. They have been very careful to avoid direct attacks on the US. Attacking the US Allies has been their tactic. Question is that might change.
I have no love for the Iranian regime whatsoever..ethically I conaider them no better and maybe more dangerous then the Saudis...but don't think military action against them is a smart move.
Of course I leave the option to change my mind if Iran is dumb enough to back a 9/11 level attack.
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Old 3rd January 2020, 12:42 PM   #132
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I'll just say that it says something about how militaristic US government and society is that candidates even as much as consider starting freaking wars for the purpose of winning votes come re-election, not to mention actually doing it (regardlessly of whether this was the case here).
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Old 3rd January 2020, 12:43 PM   #133
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Originally Posted by SuburbanTurkey View Post
Democrats will be aghast at his pointless escalation of conflict in the Middle East, conveniently forgetting that they have approved every military budget Trump has asked for.

At this point, I almost feel like we need a "rip the bandaid off" approach to US military excesses. Some president needs to just withdraw every US troop from foreign soil and let the chips fall where they may. This would be a disaster, but this country has proven to be totally incapable of acting with good judgement in these matters.

Are we seriously ginning up a war because Iran killed some military contractor? Who gives a **** if he was an American, he was a literal mercenary.

Sorry, but your solution amounts to isolationism, and time and time again it has been proven isolationism does not work.
Going from one exteme to another is not a good thing.
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Old 3rd January 2020, 12:44 PM   #134
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Originally Posted by Safe-Keeper View Post
I'll just say that it says something about how militaristic US government and society is that candidates even as much as consider starting freaking wars for the purpose of winning votes come re-election, not to mention actually doing it (regardlessly of whether this was the case here).
That generally works for a short while, until the body bags start coming home.
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Old 3rd January 2020, 12:46 PM   #135
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Originally Posted by SuburbanTurkey View Post
Unless some other foreign power intervened, it seems clear that the US military could easily destroy the state of Iran, just as it easily destroyed the state of Iraq. Our military is very good at achieving military objectives.

We have never been able to win the peace in these situations. What does a post victory Iran look like? Does anyone have any idea what to do after we've killed all the bad guys? How do we prevent Iran from slipping into a lawless hellscape like all the other places where regime change has failed spectacularly?

I think it's pretty clear we could achieve all our military objectives and still come out much worse than we are now, just as we did in Iraq.
I think a invasion of Iran would be a massive piece of idiocy,think containment is the only way to go.
I just think the consquences of a total US withdrawal like you advocate would be so bad we would end up having to go in again....
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Old 3rd January 2020, 12:59 PM   #136
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Originally Posted by dudalb View Post
Iran is a problem from hell for the US.
Iran ,let's be blunt, has been a major sponsor of terrorism in the Mideast from the fall of the Shah, and it's ambitions for sort of a new Islamic Persian Empire are pretty damn apparent. Problem is they have been smart enough, so far, to avoid any action that will bring the wrath of the US down on them and alienate some of their European defenders. They have been very careful to avoid direct attacks on the US. Attacking the US Allies has been their tactic. Question is that might change.
I have no love for the Iranian regime whatsoever..ethically I conaider them no better and maybe more dangerous then the Saudis...but don't think military action against them is a smart move.
Of course I leave the option to change my mind if Iran is dumb enough to back a 9/11 level attack.
I examined Iranian built G3 rifles and various Iranian explosive ordnance captured from insurgents in Iraq in 2004.

Given the venom of the Iran-Iraq war I was a bit surprised to see Iranian small arms and munitions in the hands of Iraqi fighters.
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Old 3rd January 2020, 01:07 PM   #137
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Originally Posted by BStrong View Post
I examined Iranian built G3 rifles and various Iranian explosive ordnance captured from insurgents in Iraq in 2004.

Given the venom of the Iran-Iraq war I was a bit surprised to see Iranian small arms and munitions in the hands of Iraqi fighters.
Doesn't surprise me at all. Iran supports insurgencies in Iraq. It stands to reason that some of the factions operating there would be using Iranian gear, whether provided by their state sponsor, or scavenged from the battlefield.
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Old 3rd January 2020, 01:08 PM   #138
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Still trying to figure out how this idiot that I haven't heard frankly jack about for the last two or three years suddenly became the most dangerous terrorist leader in the whole wide world and killing him was as important as taking out Bin Laden, which is the line that the Administration and the major news networks are pushing on me right now.
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Old 3rd January 2020, 01:10 PM   #139
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
Like if a US general were traveling in Iraq, and meeting with US-backed Iraqi forces arrayed against the Iranian insurgency in Iraq? And Iran hit him with something, probably not a drone, but maybe a suicide bomber or a mortar attack? Something like that?
I was thinking more along the lines of a US general in Mexico. Or Canada.
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Old 3rd January 2020, 01:13 PM   #140
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Originally Posted by rockysmith76 View Post
You seem a wee bit obsessed
Gee, with the people in the White House and Senate doing their darnest to undermine America and its democracy, I wonder why.
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Old 3rd January 2020, 01:17 PM   #141
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Originally Posted by BrooklynBaby View Post
Here's an article from 2015 talking about the 2800 drone strikes authorized by Obama on Iraq and Syria without congressional approval. Hope this helps.

https://www.washingtontimes.com/news...rizing-islami/
And? A LOT of people, on both sides, criticized that policty. What's your point?
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Old 3rd January 2020, 01:19 PM   #142
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Trump just made his public statement. He just couldn't help his self-aggrandizing using the phrase 'Under my leadership' twice.
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Old 3rd January 2020, 01:25 PM   #143
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Originally Posted by dudalb View Post
I think a invasion of Iran would be a massive piece of idiocy,think containment is the only way to go.
I just think the consquences of a total US withdrawal like you advocate would be so bad we would end up having to go in again....
Containment assumes a great deal of restraint that the US has not historically shown. So long as we have our military poised at the border, the risk of warhawks converting containment into invasion is very high.
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Old 3rd January 2020, 01:29 PM   #144
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Originally Posted by dudalb View Post
Hope you will be just as gung ho when the body bags start coming home.
It won't be HIM in bodybag, so he has no reason to stop being gung-ho.

Originally Posted by dudalb View Post
I am afraid I am seeing a certain amount of "The Enemy of Enemy Is My Friend" mentality at work in this thread.
I despise Trump, and think his action was ill considered and very dangerous, but too much sympathy for Qassam and his Iranian bosses here.
Too much? Only one person did that (Childlike Empress). Everyone else couldn't care less about this guy.

Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
And? A LOT of people, on both sides, criticized that policy. What's your point?
Just "u did that too reee" shrieks. No real substance.
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Old 3rd January 2020, 01:43 PM   #145
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Originally Posted by SuburbanTurkey View Post
Unless some other foreign power intervened, it seems clear that the US military could easily destroy the state of Iran, just as it easily destroyed the state of Iraq. Our military is very good at achieving military objectives.

We have never been able to win the peace in these situations. What does a post victory Iran look like? Does anyone have any idea what to do after we've killed all the bad guys?
My vote: Turn it over to the UN and contribute generously to UN peacekeeping efforts.

In some scenarios, I'd favor establishing refugee camps in the conflict zone itself. Provide heavy security for them, and support the refugees' efforts to police themselves, establish a government to their liking, and build up their own militia. Then support the militia as much as necessary to expand the safe zone around the refugee camp, retake the country, and install the refugee government in place of whatever regime they were fleeing from in the first place.

Either model is worth trying, in my opinion. I'm definitely not a big fan of transferring large numbers of citizens from a country at war to some other country. People who can fight for their country should fight for their country. We should support them in that, not do it for them. Children, the elderly, and the infirm should be taken to a place of safety until the hostilities end. But men and women of fighting age and ability should be helped to go back and fight.
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Old 3rd January 2020, 01:44 PM   #146
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Originally Posted by Giordano View Post
I am now also curious: typically in the past government officials of almost all countries have found the concept of assassinating their enemy counterparts "distasteful" and have avoided it (with only a few exceptions; e.g. the CIA trying to poison Castro). Certainly not openly . I think the self-serving aspects of this are quite clear. But now is it open season? Are we about to see a wave of tit for tat killings of high end military, cabinet members, members of the legislatures, etc? Or will it continue to be just be us common citizens in the crosshairs (the innocents who have long been established targets for terrorists and considered as acceptable collateral damage in more organized military actions)?

Well, maybe one has to turn to Russian analysts to get a sober assessment.

Originally Posted by Al Monitor
[...] Retired Col. Viktor Mukrakhovsky, editor of the military journal Arsenal Otechestva (National Arsenal), said Trump's decision to kill Soleimani opens a new chapter in the confrontation between Iran and the United States. “A statesman is killed, an official representative of his country that is a member of the UN and with which the US is not officially in a state of war. He was killed on the territory of a third country. This is not an undercover struggle of intelligence services. The US has thus openly committed an act of vengeance and is taking pride in this 'achievement.' It is testing the reaction of the international community in general and Iranian leadership in particular. Following failures in Venezuela, Syria and over talks with North Korea, after losing control of the situation in Afghanistan and ceding Iraq to Iranian militias, the US leadership has moved to raise the stakes,” Mukrakhovsky said.

Maxim Shepovalenko, deputy director at the Moscow-based Centre for Analysis of Strategies and Technologies, told Al-Monitor, “What the United States failed to understand, at its own peril and risk, is the fact that the late Maj. Gen. Qasem Soleimani was neither a warlord nor a chieftain, but rather a sovereign-empowered man. Whether it disliked him or not.”

Shepovalenko added, “Iranians are smart enough to understand that 'revenge is a dish best served cold.'” [...]

So while rather strong statements come from everywhere, the problem is that the international institutions, created to prevent a rogue nation like Nazi Germany from rising again, are seriously broken with some so corrupted by the rogue Empire of our times that they cover-up for its lies and actions.

Supported by a media machine that is so gleichgeschaltet that it can remain completely silent on a scandal so profound like the one which has been exposed over recent months with accumulating evidence in recent weeks. I'm talking OPCW and Assad gassing his own people "of course". You heard about that, didn't you?

Anyway, something will have to give, and the danger of a hot-headed response by Iran is much smaller IMHO than the one of not addressing this failure of institutions. It is time to sanction the USA, and I'm pretty optimistic that the tools are in an advanced state of development and will soon be presented.
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Old 3rd January 2020, 01:46 PM   #147
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Originally Posted by Mader Levap View Post
Too much? Only one person did that (Childlike Empress). Everyone else couldn't care less about this guy.

I didn't "do that". I described for the readers in the dark the position and reputation this man had in the region. You took that as my opinion, obviously unable to assess the truth of my statements.
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Old 3rd January 2020, 01:48 PM   #148
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Originally Posted by Captain_Swoop View Post
John Bolton Tweeted

@AmbJohnBolton
Congratulations to all involved in eliminating Qassem Soleimani. Long in the making, this was a decisive blow against Iran's malign Quds Force activities worldwide. Hope this is the first step to regime change in Tehran.

Or not. Or wait 5 minutes for another change of opinion.


Quote:
In a statement from Mar-a-Lago, President Trump said the US is not seeking regime change in Iran following an attack that killed a top Iranian general.

"We do not seek regime change," he said.
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Old 3rd January 2020, 01:54 PM   #149
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Originally Posted by a_unique_person View Post
The weakest and strategically most important target for the Iranians is the Straights of Hormuz. Americans may soon see higher has prices. They have shale oil but the rest of the world does not have the same production.
And that's why Iran won't dare to close the Straits. It won't cripple the US ability to end them, but it will destroy what scraps of diplomatic cover they still maintain with the rest of the world.
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Old 3rd January 2020, 01:57 PM   #150
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Originally Posted by Armitage72 View Post
Well, ...

If several members of the new government of Iran could arrange to stay in some of those high-priced Trump hotels for a few weeks, then I expect that Trump would most definitely be in favor of regime change.
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Old 3rd January 2020, 01:58 PM   #151
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Originally Posted by Checkmite View Post
Still trying to figure out how this idiot that I haven't heard frankly jack about for the last two or three years suddenly became the most dangerous terrorist leader in the whole wide world and killing him was as important as taking out Bin Laden, which is the line that the Administration and the major news networks are pushing on me right now.
You may not have heard of him, but he's been known for over a decade.
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Old 3rd January 2020, 02:15 PM   #152
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
You may not have heard of him, but he's been known for over a decade.

He's been known almost since the revolution. Here's an eulogy from Al Manar, Lebanese outlet close to Hezbollah.
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Old 3rd January 2020, 02:24 PM   #153
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Originally Posted by Armitage72 View Post
Note that Bolton doesn't have any standing in the administration any longer.
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Old 3rd January 2020, 02:24 PM   #154
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
And that's why Iran won't dare to close the Straits. It won't cripple the US ability to end them, but it will destroy what scraps of diplomatic cover they still maintain with the rest of the world.

I agree, closing the Straits for everyone is not something they would do. It's kind of a distraction (not by you, often theorized about of course). But the whole environment is kind of target-rich, and most of the sea- and land-based aircraft carriers are next to huge glass palaces kind of important to "the market".

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Old 3rd January 2020, 02:24 PM   #155
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
You may not have heard of him, but he's been known for over a decade.
I have heard of him. I knew who he was.

It's the idea that he is quite suddenly the worst terrorist leader in the world who needed to be killed at the first possible chance that I take issue with. The idea that he is so dangerous, it justified a military rocket attack on a busy civilian airport in an allegedly allied country that almost certainly killed innocent bystanders.

Can you imagine an US rocket attack on car parked in front of the terminal at de Gaulle?
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Old 3rd January 2020, 02:25 PM   #156
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Originally Posted by a_unique_person View Post
I don't think that's the correct use of the expression "The tail wagging the dog".
Merriam-Webster
Quote:
Definition of the tail wagging the dog
informal
—used to describe a situation in which an important or powerful person, organization, etc., is being controlled by someone or something that is much less important or powerful
Wag the Dog movie
Quote:
Wag the Dog is a 1997 American political satire black comedy film produced and directed by Barry Levinson and starring Dustin Hoffman and Robert De Niro.[1] The screenplay concerns a spin doctor and a Hollywood producer who fabricate a war in Albania to distract voters from a presidential sex scandal. The screenplay by Hilary Henkin and David Mamet was loosely adapted from Larry Beinhart's novel American Hero.
The definition doesn't exactly fit the movie plot which is what some of us are using as the definition.

Interesting.
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Old 3rd January 2020, 02:25 PM   #157
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Originally Posted by Childlike Empress View Post
...I'm talking OPCW and Assad gassing his own people "of course". You heard about that, didn't you? ...
I did hear about that. Apparently Assad just needs a group hug. And caitlin johnstone needs a laughing dog.

The OPCW concluded only that the gas used (and there was no dispute about some kind of gas being used) was not consistent with Chlorine gas. In short, Assad didn't use Chlorine gas but used another (yet to be identified at the time of the wikileaks dump) gas instead.
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Old 3rd January 2020, 02:27 PM   #158
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Originally Posted by Checkmite View Post
Still trying to figure out how this idiot that I haven't heard frankly jack about for the last two or three years suddenly became the most dangerous terrorist leader in the whole wide world and killing him was as important as taking out Bin Laden, which is the line that the Administration and the major news networks are pushing on me right now.
Really, I am not getting that the guy was another Bin Laden from the news coverage (except for Fox News and it's ilk) but it is a major news story which might have huge consequences.
But yeah, Trump is trying to to make the guy sound like Bin Laden and Admiral Yamamoto combined.
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Old 3rd January 2020, 02:28 PM   #159
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Originally Posted by Skeptic Ginger View Post
Merriam-Webster


Wag the Dog movie

The definition doesn't exactly fit the movie plot which is what some of us are using as the definition.

Interesting.
"Wag the Dog" has always been one of my most overrated movies. Its' a film that is not anywhere near as clever or witty or daring as it thinks it is.
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Old 3rd January 2020, 02:28 PM   #160
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Originally Posted by Squeegee Beckenheim View Post
It's not a stretch from Trump believing this about Obama to Trump believing it's a good idea for him to use to distract from the Impeachment.
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