U.S. Sizing Up Iran?

Victory

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This short clip purports to be a missile hitting the plane.
From what I can see and hear of the clip, it is not at all conclusive.
And why would such a view be filmed on a camera phone?

 

Victory

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Someone just told me this theory:

On 7 January, Ukraine left the U.N. Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People, which has historically been anti-Israeli.

Could the aircraft have been shot down by the Iranians as "revenge? the following day"
 

AlchoPwn

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I know the Iranian dictators have acquired the nickname of the "mad mullahs", but doing another Lockerbie is more their style and I doubt even they would be mad enough to sanction a terrorist attack on a plane carrying dozens of their own nationals. I note that Trump is now hinting that the aircraft was most likely shot down by a Tehran-based SAM.
I suspect it might have been another Buk launch that accidentally targeted the jet because it wasn't Iranian. Let's face facts... if they can't organize a funeral without getting people killed, what hope do they have of managing air traffic in a time of high international stress?
 

blessmycottonsocks

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I suspect it might have been another Buk launch that accidentally targeted the jet because it wasn't Iranian. Let's face facts... if they can't organize a funeral without getting people killed, what hope do they have of managing air traffic in a time of high international stress?
Very good point.
The BBC 07:30 radio news reported that Iran is systematically clearing the site of the downed airliner of all wreckage/evidence. The BBC's guest was an airline pilot who said that was "a big no-no" .
 

AlchoPwn

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Very good point.
The BBC 07:30 radio news reported that Iran is systematically clearing the site of the downed airliner of all wreckage/evidence. The BBC's guest was an airline pilot who said that was "a big no-no" .
So Iran is as guilty as sin and rushing to cover up their incompetence. Big surprise.

As to the airstrike on the bases, as previously reported, no casualties. Here is an article that provides photographic evidence of the damage:
Iran Missile attack

So where were the USA's anti-missile systems? On holiday like Scott Morrison?
 

maximus otter

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So where were the USA's anti-missile systems?
US officials say troops had hours of advance warning of an impending attack from communication and signals intelligence, but the warning after the missile launch was likely only a few minutes.

No attempt was made to intercept the missile; instead, troops at the targeted bases were ordered to disperse.

https://www.wired.com/story/us-missile-defense-iranian-strike/

My No.1 guess would be de-escalation.

My No.2 guess would be that they couldn’t be arsed to fire a multi-million dollar Patriot to protect a $10K chow tent/ khazi.

maximus otter
 

Tribble

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maximus otter

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So it seems Trump and Soleimani may well have known each other through "business dealings". The Trump Organisation allegedly helped launder money for the IRGC only a few years before Trump was elected.

https://www.independent.co.uk/news/...tower-baku-azerbaijan-sanctions-a8861736.html

Via
The very last paragraph of the article:

“There is no evidence Mr Trump or any Trump Organization officials acted illegally in the deal. Mr Trump, in fact, was reportedly only lightly involved in the project...”

Thin, desperate stuff.

maximus otter
 

blessmycottonsocks

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Again credit to Bellingcat and other pioneering investigative sites that forced Iran to do a u-turn and admit culpability.

I fully expect the mullahs now to scapegoat some minor reservist soldier and very publicly throw him under a bus.
 

AlchoPwn

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This whole story is a gift that keeps on giving. Not one drone strike but 2, but one failed. Trump proven to be financially involved with the Iranian Republican Guard the day after declaring them to be terrorists. Iran admitting culpability for shooting down a civilian aircraft.
It's political 3 stooges comedy. I'm hooked.
 

Mythopoeika

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This whole story is a gift that keeps on giving. Not one drone strike but 2, but one failed. Trump proven to be financially involved with the Iranian Republican Guard the day after declaring them to be terrorists. Iran admitting culpability for shooting down a civilian aircraft.
It's political 3 stooges comedy. I'm hooked.
It'll build into a story of Byzantine complexity. Just wait.
 
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Again credit to Bellingcat and other pioneering investigative sites that forced Iran to do a u-turn and admit culpability.

I fully expect the mullahs now to scapegoat some minor reservist soldier and very publicly throw him under a bus.
Surprisingly a general has emerged and taken full responsibility for the missile launch, the mullahs realised that a senior head had to roll.
 

Victory

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So it seems Trump and Soleimani may well have known each other through "business dealings". The Trump Organisation allegedly helped launder money for the IRGC only a few years before Trump was elected.

https://www.independent.co.uk/news/...tower-baku-azerbaijan-sanctions-a8861736.html

Via

From an outside US perspective, I see the the Trump-Soleimani business "deal" allegations falling very much into the partisan tit-for-tat category which dominates American politics.
Even the article states that Trump did not directly take money from Solameini or the IRGC.
It was that the Azeri Transport Minister he dealt with had possible ties to them.
So a failure of due diligence, but not Trump directly doing business with Solameini.

Some Republicans alleging Obama had direct communications with Soleimani the transcripts of which not officially released.
Around the time of the nuclear deal.
Suppose that is par for the course though for such negotiations.
 
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Things changing fast in Iran.

What happened at the protests?

Students gathered outside at least two universities, Sharif and Amir Kabir, reports said, initially to pay respect to the victims. Protests turned angry in the evening.

The semi-official Fars news agency carried a rare report of the unrest, saying up to 1,000 people had chanted slogans against leaders and tore up pictures of Soleimani.

The students called for those responsible for the downing the plane, and those they said had covered up the action, to be prosecuted.

Chants included "commander-in-chief resign", referring to Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, and "death to liars".

Fars said police had "dispersed" the protesters, who were blocking roads. Social media footage appeared to show tear gas being fired.

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-51079965

And a hair-raising encounter for the British Ambassador

The UK ambassador to Iran was arrested during anti-government protests in Tehran after officials admitted shooting down a passenger plane.

Rob Macaire was held for three hours, in what the UK described as a "flagrant violation of international law".

It is understood he was attending a vigil for those who died in the crash, which turned into a protest.

He left to make his way back to the UK embassy, but was arrested as he stopped at a barber shop for a haircut.

https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-51077897
 

blessmycottonsocks

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Things changing fast in Iran.

What happened at the protests?

Students gathered outside at least two universities, Sharif and Amir Kabir, reports said, initially to pay respect to the victims. Protests turned angry in the evening.

The semi-official Fars news agency carried a rare report of the unrest, saying up to 1,000 people had chanted slogans against leaders and tore up pictures of Soleimani.

The students called for those responsible for the downing the plane, and those they said had covered up the action, to be prosecuted.

Chants included "commander-in-chief resign", referring to Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, and "death to liars".

Fars said police had "dispersed" the protesters, who were blocking roads. Social media footage appeared to show tear gas being fired.

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-51079965

And a hair-raising encounter for the British Ambassador

The UK ambassador to Iran was arrested during anti-government protests in Tehran after officials admitted shooting down a passenger plane.

Rob Macaire was held for three hours, in what the UK described as a "flagrant violation of international law".

It is understood he was attending a vigil for those who died in the crash, which turned into a protest.

He left to make his way back to the UK embassy, but was arrested as he stopped at a barber shop for a haircut.

https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-51077897
Very encouraging to hear that Iranians (seems like mostly students so far) seem to be turning against the islamist regime.
 

kamalktk

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Per the NY Times, US Secretary of Defense said there was no evidence Soleimani was planning any imminent things.

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/01/12/us/politics/esper-iran-trump-embassies.html

Wall Street Journal reported that "“Mr. Trump, after the strike, told associates he was under pressure to deal with Gen. Soleimani from GOP senators he views as important supporters in his coming impeachment trial in the Senate, associates said.” "

/non paywalled link to the quote from WSJ here: https://www.rollingstone.com/politi...whose-support-he-needs-on-impeachment-936180/
 

AlchoPwn

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Per the NY Times, US Secretary of Defense said there was no evidence Soleimani was planning any imminent things. https://www.nytimes.com/2020/01/12/us/politics/esper-iran-trump-embassies.html
Hmm... Considering that he had just orchestrated an attack on the US Embassy in Baghdad, and was meeting with pro-Iranian Iraqi agistators, 5 of whom dies with him in the drone strike, and the USA's miserable lack of response to the attack on the US Embassy in Libya under Obama, I'd say that this was a good call by Trump, albeit somewhat accidentally. The fact that Soleiman was meeting agitators when he died speaks volumes to me. There are plenty of other, better things, the Dems can use against Trump atm.

In the meantime, Iran has demonstrated rank incompetence on every level; blowing up a civilian plane, lying about the plane, getting mourners trampled at Soleimani's funeral, and inflicting no casualties in their missile attacks on US bases. What fresh own goals await?
 

blessmycottonsocks

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Hmm... Considering that he had just orchestrated an attack on the US Embassy in Baghdad, and was meeting with pro-Iranian Iraqi agistators, 5 of whom dies with him in the drone strike, and the USA's miserable lack of response to the attack on the US Embassy in Libya under Obama, I'd say that this was a good call by Trump, albeit somewhat accidentally. The fact that Soleiman was meeting agitators when he died speaks volumes to me. There are plenty of other, better things, the Dems can use against Trump atm.

In the meantime, Iran has demonstrated rank incompetence on every level; blowing up a civilian plane, lying about the plane, getting mourners trampled at Soleimani's funeral, and inflicting no casualties in their missile attacks on US bases. What fresh own goals await?
It's not just tear gas any more. Reports, including video, of live ammunition being used against pro-democracy protesters.

https://www.dw.com/en/iran-protests-videos-allegedly-show-police-firing-at-demonstrators/a-51978765
 
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The whistleblower, who posted the mobile phone video showing the missile attack, has been arrested by the Iranian regime and accused of crimes against the state.
Had this courageous individual not posted the video, which was subsequently analysed and disseminated by Bellingcat, the Iranian regime would have continued to deny any involvement and cover up the atrocity.

https://www.bbc.com/news/amp/world-middle-east-51114945
 
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An article by Yassamine Mather, an Iranian Dissident since 1979 who has engaged in armed struggle against the mullahs. The article was written before the shooting down of the Ukrainian jet. Please read and reflect on this article in it's totality rather than highlighting a sentence/paragraph you may disagree with. At least consider that Yassamine with her 40 years experience of opposing the mullahs might have a worthwhile analysis of recent events.

As she says:

This is why we must fight on two fronts. We unequivocally condemn the US’s war-mongering. At the same time, we will continue to defend the struggles of the workers of Iran against the oppressive neoliberal economic policies of the reactionary religious state that oppresses them.

Yassamine Mather assesses the situation in the Middle East following the US assassination of Qassem Soleimani and Iran’s missile revenge gesture

This week has been a godsend for leaders of the Islamic Republic. First, the drone strike that killed Qassem Soleimani, the commander in chief of the Quds force of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards. Then Donald Trump’s subsequent threat to bomb 52 targets in Iran. We can say with a level of confidence that in the short term all this has done wonders for the Islamic regime.

Of course, everything could change suddenly if the United Sates decides to retaliate for the missile attack on two US air bases in Anbar and Erbil provinces in Iraq. But it seems there were no casualties and the Iraqi government had prior warning of the attack - there is speculation that the US military was also given notice to make sure there were no casualties. Iran’s foreign minister, Mohammad Javad Zarif, has announced that the missile attack has concluded the retaliation for Soleimani’s assassination. However, there is no doubt we are entering a period of prolonged tension and possible US air attacks.

Inside Iran, a mood of patriotism has grown, with rival factions within the government coming closer together, and even some opponents of the regime rallying to ‘defend the country’. Such views are expressed by the former foreign minister of the shah’s era, Ardeshir Zahedi - the son of general Fazlollah Zahedi, the commander of the 1953 CIA-backed coup that paved the way for the shah’s return from exile. Zahedi praised Soleimani in a January 5 BBC Persian programme, and his views find echoes amongst middle class nationalists, though they have never been supporters of the regime.

https://weeklyworker.co.uk/worker/1281/a-godsend-for-the-regime/
 

AlchoPwn

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I completely disagree with her assessment of the situation. When you have people demonstrating in the street against the regime, where does she get off suggesting that it is a godsend to them? A mood of patriotism? State journalists are resigning because they refuse to lie to the public anymore. Yassamine is offering biased commentary that is not in line with reality. I think Trump got lucky on this one, and I'm not saying he deserved to, but the Mullahs don't seem to be coping well at all.
 
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I completely disagree with her assessment of the situation. When you have people demonstrating in the street against the regime, where does she get off suggesting that it is a godsend to them? A mood of patriotism? State journalists are resigning because they refuse to lie to the public anymore. Yassamine is offering biased commentary that is not in line with reality. I think Trump got lucky on this one, and I'm not saying he deserved to, but the Mullahs don't seem to be coping well at all.
No, she means the original demos where people protested against the assassination, even long term enemies of the regime:

Inside Iran, a mood of patriotism has grown, with rival factions within the government coming closer together, and even some opponents of the regime rallying to ‘defend the country’. Such views are expressed by the former foreign minister of the shah’s era, Ardeshir Zahedi - the son of general Fazlollah Zahedi, the commander of the 1953 CIA-backed coup that paved the way for the shah’s return from exile. Zahedi praised Soleimani in a January 5 BBC Persian programme, and his views find echoes amongst middle class nationalists, though they have never been supporters of the regime.

Particularly important was the size of the procession in Ahvaz - it stretched for 30km. Ahvaz is very significant, as it is the capital of Khuzestan province, and Saudi Arabia has invested heavily in supporting the Arab separatist movement in the region. An even larger procession took place in Mashad, in northern Iran, and on January 6 Tehran witnessed one of the largest gatherings in the capital since the Islamic Republic came into existence. Women wearing no headscarf (despite the fact that the Islamic hijab is compulsory) were photographed joining the procession with apparently no move against them from state forces.

If the assassination was supposed to weaken or to damage Iran’s position in Iraq or Lebanon, that has also been a spectacular failure. Not long ago, citizens of Shia Iraqi cities were setting fire to Iranian consulates; the demand for Iran to keep its hands off Iraq had been one of the main slogans of protestors in Baghdad and elsewhere. Ali al-Sistani, leader of the Shia community in Iraq, was echoing such calls.

But by January 3, everything had changed. Shia Iraqis were uniting behind their own militia and Iran’s Islamic Republic. Ayatollah Sistani’s condemnation of the killing - read at Friday prayers - was in stark contrast to his previous messages and his sermon was followed by chants of “Death to America” in the main Shia holy shrine in Karbala. This was the first time such a call had been taken up by the congregation. Despite US propaganda to the contrary, it is clear that the first steps are being taken to withdraw troops from Iraqi territory.

Whether we like it or not the protests against the regime have so far been much smaller, even after the downing of the jet.

It's best to read the entire article and assess individual paragraphs in that context.

Given Yassamine's 40 year record of opposition to the mullahs at least consider that she might have a better grasp of the situation than you or I would.
 

AlchoPwn

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Given Yassamine's 40 year record of opposition to the mullahs at least consider that she might have a better grasp of the situation than you or I would.
So where is her follow-up article that covers how the "display of patriotism" saw 55 of her countrymen crushed to death because Iran can't enforce basic crowd control at public events? Or how the downing of Ukraininan International Airlines Flight 752 caused mass demonstrations and public outcry when it was revealed that not 1 but 2 missiles were fired at it? I think she is more interested in Trump bashing in this piece than looking at the bizarre turn of events and the unexpected good the Giant Oompa Loompa just pulled off, albeit contrary to common sense, and against all odds. I wonder if it isn't a bit like how Reagan managed to up the ante with the USSR thru jingoism to the point where the USSR collapsed? Remember what a warmongering crazy everyone thought Reagan was? I certainly do, but he was also a "dose of salts" to the USSR's totalitarianism.
 
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