This is perhaps the third completely rewritten version of a column I started on Sunday evening, after a refreshing impromptu luncheon with MB and Da (most delightful gentlemen, both). Part of our conversation veered to The Trump, Iraq, Iran, and the fate of the world. None of us, like everyone else, had any definitive answers for certain recent developments. Here follows, in admittedly imperfect form, what I can muster at this point; you most assuredly know the news as reported.
On Friday, January 20, 2017, Donald John Trump stood on the steps of the Capitol and proudly, brashly proclaimed: “From this moment on, it’s going to be America First. Every decision on trade, on taxes, on immigration, on foreign affairs, will be made to benefit American workers and American families.”
In an earnest moment of clarity, he went on to say: “We will seek friendship and goodwill with the nations of the world – but we do so with the understanding that it is the right of all nations to put their own interests first. We do not seek to impose our way of life on anyone, but rather to let it shine as an example for everyone to follow.”
Later, towards the end of his speech, he embraced the Wisdom of King David (Psalm 133:1): “The Bible tells us, ‘how good and pleasant it is when God’s people live together in unity.’” If I remember correctly, at the time, I found the words refreshing, inspiring even. With all due respect to the Lord, the great King, and the unified People, I’m tempted to ask what the hell happened? I know just enough to resist the temptation. Instead, I offer “If” and “If Not” philosophical scenarios.
Also: virtually everything you’ve been told about foreign affairs and modern history by the government in Washington and by the CIA, I mean by the mainstream media, is utterly false. Most of what you’ve been told about the history of the past two centuries is largely fictitious as well. Three things of late to consider: ISIS, a mercenary, and a mob. Regardless of what lies you’ve been fed, ISIS was created by and is funded, equipped, armed, trained, and directed by the CIA and to a lesser degree the DOD; its purpose is to destabilize the Middle East for the benefit of Israel and Saudi Arabia. A US mercenary, called by some a “contractor,” was killed while serving as an advisor to ISIS, the blame being placed on Iranian General Qasem Suleimani. Suleimani is credited with keeping ISIS out of Iran and also with defeating or nearly defeating ISIS in Iraq and Syria. For his trouble, the US Empire killed him last week. But first, he was blamed for another lie - the mob siege of the fortress-like US Imperial Embassy in the middle of the damned green zone in Baghdad. That attack, I am convinced, never happened. What was shown on television, a crazed cowboys and indians show, was a scripted performance, not unlike a scene (also in Iraq) that deceased German journalist Udo Ulfkotte described in his book, Gekaufte Journalisten (Bought Journalism). The drone strike on Suleimani was unfortunately real. It’s the “why” that everyone is having a hard time with.
Around the time of my first drafting of this article, I began to hear rumors of Machiavellian, or Trumpian, nature. That 4-D underwater chess stuff the Q brigade is always “patriots stand!”-ing about. What if the rumors are right? What if all this fuss and the assassination of Suleimani was orchestrated not to start a war, but to prevent (or end) one.
When it comes down to it, no-one outside of the Likud party and maybe the banksters is all that keen about a war with Iran, at least as potentially fostered by Trump’s strikes at the end of last week. Even the insane neocons are hesitant; that alone speaks volumes. One suggestion is that this move is Trump playing the war-mongers, giving them too much of what they claim they want. Why? Allegedly so that he can then withdraw US forces from Iraq. That’s certainly what the Iraqi Parliament wants. Trump was blustering about sanctions and payments for withdrawal. But then … an unsigned letter circulated suggesting that US troops would indeed begin their departure. However, Sec-Def Espers said the letter was a mistake and not indicative of policy. There’s also the contra-indicative deployment of additional US rapid reaction troops to Iraq.
However, if it were true that the strike was a prelude to withdrawal, then it would be one of the greatest things Trump has done yet in his tenure. I would have theoretically opted for a different route - simply declaring victory and leaving, with a hearty “Best wishes!” to Baghdad. Killing Suleimani served no legitimate purpose of which I can conceive. But I’m not the President.
If (a lot of “if’s,” aren’t there?) it’s true, then might it be a harbinger of additional good things to come in Afghanistan, Syria, Yemen, and other places where the US has never had any business meddling? It’s almost too good to be true. But, it does, when thought about like this, impart great hope.
Now, the holy shit part. If this act of aggression was more business as stupid usual for the Empire, then the potential ramifications are astounding. It has done more to unite the previously adversarial Iraqis and Iranians that almost anything I recall in my lifetime. Iran publically states its desire for revenge and retaliation. ISIS is out one of their most ardent opponents. China and Russia nervously stand by, as uncertain as anyone else. It’s probably not World War Three, but it’s anything but good.
The weak government in Baghdad had no choice but to team with the US Empire in order to fight the terrorists unleashed by the US Empire. However, out of common interests, they also allied themselves with anti-ISIS factions of Iran. General Suleimani was seminal in that fight. His Iranian-backed militias, many of the members of which are Christians, were formally adopted into the Iraqi security apparatus. US Imperial forces fought side-by-side in Iraq with these militias against the ISIS evil unleashed by the US. The good guys are or were winning.
And Suleimani, let’s not overlook, was in Baghdad at someone’s request. He was welcomed as an ally by the Iraqi government for his work in assisting Iraqi militia forces and fighting ISIS. A new and plausible rumor is that the US invited Suleimani to town as an official diplomat to either act as an ISIS-Iraqi-US mediator or to provide information about Iran’s nuclear programs. If true, then absent some unknown grand plan, Trump’s actions amount to acts of war and violations of both US and international law. Not that he’d ever be held accountable. International law has no teeth and US law bends with the breeze.
Following in the wake of last year’s pathetic impeachment sham, there exists an uninteresting yet embarrassing state of limbo in DC regarding the same. A sad possibility exists that a deal of sorts was reached between elements of the deep state to ameliorate the phony charges (of the President with literally doing his job). The deal: war with Iran in exchange for making nice on the fake impeachment articles. Trump, who had heretofore nominally resisted the deep state - at least on the G-D digital abomination known as Twitter - could have caved on the deal, or worse, been subsumed into the deep state itself. The ISIS-mercenary-mob-Suleimani act might have been a much-needed ruse. It’s ironic - at last, Trump would have given the lunatic left real crimes for which to impeach him. But, they wouldn’t as their leaders would themselves be complicit in the same crimes. So much for the rule of law.
The truth? It's likely somewhere in the middle or on the periphery. If, or if not, more and more lies will flow from the Yankee Capital and the media. The threat of serious war is now real, if still somewhat muted or distant. Much would still need to happen before that dreaded FAFSA draft could happen - maybe a little less before a carrier rested upon the ocean floor. Perhaps, hopefully, total war will be averted. Even more hopefully, older wars may yet be ended. IF, then America has a great leader truly determined - like his tactics or not - to put America first. IF NOT, then the fate of the world may rest in the hands of Vladimir Putin and his decisions of restraint. Either way, there’s still hope for peace. Let's all of us, try to concentrate on that. I, personally, would love a new year WITHOUT a new war.