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Posts Tagged ‘imminent attacks’

The Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity : US to Iraq: ‘Vote All You Want, We’re Not Leaving!’

Posted by M. C. on January 14, 2020

Lead by example and demonstrate how free markets and peace benefit all. A “force for good” means not forcing others to bow to your will.

http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2020/january/13/us-to-iraq-vote-all-you-want-we-re-not-leaving/

Written by Ron Paul

President Trump’s decision earlier this month to assassinate Iran’s top military general on Iraqi soil – over the objection of the Iraqi government – has damaged the US relationship with its “ally” Iraq and set the region on the brink of war. Iran’s measured response – a few missiles fired on an Iraqi base after advance warning was given – is the only reason the US is not mired in another Middle East war.

Trump said his decision to assassinate Gen. Qassim Soleimani was intended to prevent a war, not start a war. But no one in his right mind would think that killing another country’s top military leader would not leave that country annoyed, to say the least. Senators Mike Lee (R-UT) and Rand Paul (R-KY) said the Trump Administration’s briefing to Congress on its evidence to back up claims that Soleimani was about to launch attacks against the US was among the worst briefings they’d ever attended.

After initially claiming that Soleimani had to be taken out immediately because of “imminent” attacks he was launching against the US, Trump Administration officials including Secretary of State Pompeo and Defense Secretary Esper have been busy walking back those claims. Esper claimed over the weekend that he had not seen the intelligence suggesting an attack on US embassies was in the works. If the Secretary of Defense did not seen the intelligence, then who did?

No doubt the Iraqi leadership recognized these kinds of deceptions: the same kinds of lies were used to push the US into attacking their own country in 2003. So it should not have come as a big surprise that the Iraqi government met last week and voted that all foreign military personnel should leave Iraqi soil.

Then a funny thing happened when the Iraqi prime minister attempted to communicate to the US government the will of the Iraqi people through their democratically-elected officials. On Thursday Iraqi Prime Minister Mahdi phoned Pompeo to urgently request that Washington enact a US troop “withdrawal mechanism” in Iraq. American troops are in Iraq by invitation of the Iraqi government and the Iraqi government had just voted to revoke that invitation.

The State Department responded with a statement titled “The US Continued Partnership with Iraq,” in which it essentially said that the US would not abide by the request of its Iraqi partners because the US military is a “force for good” in the Middle East and that as such it is “our right” to maintain “appropriate force posture” in the region.

The US invaded Iraq based on Bush Administration lies and a million Iraqis died as a result. Later, President Obama ramped up the drone program and also backed al-Qaeda affiliated terrorists to overthrow the secular Syrian government. Obama also attacked Libya based on lies, leaving the country totally destroyed. Trump is assassinating foreign officials and threatening destruction of Iran.

And the State Department calls that a “force for good”?

The United States can be a true force for good, however. End the military occupation of the Middle East, end foreign military aid, stop using the CIA to overthrow governments. Allow Americans to travel and do business in any country they wish. Lead by example and demonstrate how free markets and peace benefit all. A “force for good” means not forcing others to bow to your will.


Copyright © 2020 by RonPaul Institute. Permission to reprint in whole or in part is gladly granted, provided full credit and a live link are given.
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Iraqi PM reveals Soleimani was on peace mission when assassinated, exploding Trump’s lie of ‘imminent attacks’ | The Grayzone

Posted by M. C. on January 10, 2020

According to Abdul-Mahdi, he had planned to meet Soleimani on the morning the general was killed to discuss a diplomatic rapproachment that Iraq was brokering between Iran and Saudi Arabia.

Abdul-Mahdi said that Trump personally thanked him for the efforts, even as he was planning the hit on Soleimani – thus creating the impression that the Iranian general was safe to travel to Baghdad.

https://thegrayzone.com/2020/01/06/soleimani-peace-mission-assassinated-trump-lie-imminent-attacks/

The Trump administration claimed Iranian general Qasem Soleimani was planning “imminent attacks” on US interests when it assassinated him. That lie was just destroyed, but not before countless corporate media outlets transmitted it to the public.

By Max Blumenthal

Desperate to justify the US drone assassination of Iranian Major General Qasem Soleimani, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo insisted that Washington had made an “intelligence-based assessment” that Soleimani was “actively planning in the region” to attack American interests before he was killed.

President Donald Trump justified his fateful decision to kill the Iranian general in even more explicit language, declaring that Soleimani was planning “imminent attacks” on US diplomatic facilities and personnel across the Middle East.

“We took action last night to stop a war,” Trump claimed. “We did not take action to start a war.”

Trump’s dubious rationale for an indisputably criminal assassination has been repeated widely across corporate media networks, and often without any skepticism or debate.

At a January 3 State Department briefing, where reporters finally got the chance to demand evidence for the claim of an “imminent” threat, one US official erupted in anger.

“Jesus, do we have to explain why we do these things?” he barked at the press.

Two days later, when Iraqi Prime Minister Adil Abdul-Mahdi addressed his country’s parliament, Trump’s justification for killing Soleimani was exposed as a cynical lie.

According to Abdul-Mahdi, he had planned to meet Soleimani on the morning the general was killed to discuss a diplomatic rapproachment that Iraq was brokering between Iran and Saudi Arabia.

Abdul-Mahdi said that Trump personally thanked him for the efforts, even as he was planning the hit on Soleimani – thus creating the impression that the Iranian general was safe to travel to Baghdad.

Soleimani had arrived in Baghdad not to plan attacks on American targets, but to coordinate de-escalation with Saudi Arabia. Indeed, he was killed while on an actual peace mission that could have created political distance between the Gulf monarchy and members of the US-led anti-Iran axis like Israel.

The catastrophic results of Soleimani’s killing recall the Obama administration’s 2016 assassination of Mullah Akhtar Muhammad Mansur, a Taliban leader who was eager to negotiate a peaceful end to the US occupation of Afghanistan. Mansur’s death wound up empowering hardline figures in the Taliban who favored a total military victory over the US and triggered an uptick in violence across the country, dooming hopes for a negotiated exit.

Since Soleimani’s assassination, Iraq’s parliament has voted to expel all US troops from the country and Iran’s Grand Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has sworn to exact a “severe revenge” on the “the criminals who have stained their hands with [Soleimani’s] and the other martyrs’ blood…”

Trump, for his part, tweeted a litany of gangster-like threats, promising to destroy Iranian cultural sites if it retaliated and pledging to sanction Iraq “like they’ve never been before” if it ousted US troops.

Trump’s treacherous assassination has brought the US closer to war than ever before against a country more militarily potent than any adversary it has faced since the Korean War. And as with the failed US invasion of Iraq, Washington’s casus belli for triggering this conflict was based on falsified intelligence sold to Americans by administration officials, and on a pliant Beltway media acting as their megaphone.

With its claim of “imminent attacks,” the Trump administration has essentially re-mixed Condoleeza Rice’s 2003 warning that “we don’t want the smoking gun to be a mushroom cloud.” Back then, the US attacked a sovereign state to rid it of WMD that did not exist. This time, it killed the second-most important Iranian official to prevent a killing spree that was not on the way. And Trump administration officials knew they were lying.

In fact, Pompeo pitched assassinating Soleimani to Trump several months ago, well before any attacks were “imminent.” And in the wake of the general’s killing, a US official revealed to the New York Times that the NSA had intercepted “communications the United States had between Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, and General Suleimani showing that the ayatollah had not yet approved any plans by the general for an attack.”

But the preponderance of evidence exposing Trump’s basis for killing Soleimani as a titanic lie has not generated the same level of media interest as the lie itself.

On January 3, CNN assigned three reporters to disseminate the Trump administration’s disinformation about Soleimani, claiming without a hint of critical detachment that he was “planning specific attacks on US interests, including US personnel.”

After the story went live, CNN’s lead reporter, Jim Sciutto, reached out to another official US source to “confirm” his now-discredited piece of war propaganda. In Sciutto’s mind, if more than one US official says a thing, it must be true.

Sciutto is not just any run-of-the-mill national security reporter. During the Obama era, he accepted a job as chief of staff at the US Embassy in Beijing, placing himself at the center of Washington’s gathering Cold War with China. Now back behind CNN’s anchor desk, Sciutto poses as a ferocious critic of Trump while providing the Pentagon and State Department with reliable stenographic services.

No president in recent history has been despised more viscerally by the Beltway press corps than Trump. Nearly everything he says is met with disdain and suspicion, even when he is telling the truth.

But when Trump and his administration attempt to lie the public into war against a designated evildoer, a swath of the corporate media responds with reflexive trust, then shrugs when the lie is exposed in broad daylight.

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