PEPE ESCOBAR: Iran Squeezed Between Imperial Psychos and European Cowards

Berlin, Paris and London assumed Tehran could not afford to leave the JCPOA even if it was not receiving any of the promised economic rewards.  Now the EU3 are facing the hour of truth, writes Pepe Escobar.

By Pepe Escobar
in Bangkok
Special to Consortium News

The Trump administration unilaterally cheated on the 2015 multinational, UN-endorsed JCPOA, or Iran nuclear deal. It has imposed an illegal, worldwide financial and energy blockade on all forms of trade with Iran — from oil and gas to exports of iron, steel, aluminum and copper. For all practical purposes, and in any geopolitical scenario, this is a declaration of war.

Successive U.S. governments have ripped international law to shreds; ditching the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action is only the latest instance. It doesn’t matter that Tehran has fulfilled all its commitments to the deal — according to UN inspectors. Once the leadership in Tehran concluded that the U.S. sanctions tsunami is fiercer than ever, it decided to begin partially withdrawing from the deal.

President Hassan Rouhani was adamant: Iran has not left the JCPOA — yet. Tehran’s measures are legal under the framework of articles 26 and 36 of the JCPOA — and European officials were informed in advance. But it’s clear the EU3 (Germany, France, Britain), who have always insisted on their vocal support for the JCPOA, must work seriously to alleviate the U.S.-provoked economic disaster to Iran if Tehran has any incentive to continue to abide by the agreement.

Protests in front of former U.S. embassy in Tehran after U.S. decision to withdraw from JCPOA, May 8, 2018. (Hossein Mersadi via Wikimedia Commons)

Russia and China — the pillars of Eurasia integration, to which Iran adheres — support Tehran’s position. This was discussed extensively in Moscow by Sergey Lavrov and Iran’s Javad Zarif, perhaps the world’s top two foreign ministers.

At the same time, it’s politically naïve to believe the Europeans will suddenly grow a backbone.

The comfortable assumption in Berlin, Paris and London was that Tehran could not afford to leave the JCPOA even if it was not receiving any of the economic rewards promised in 2015. Yet now the EU3 are facing the hour of truth.

It’s hard to expect anything meaningful coming from an enfeebled Chancellor Angela Merkel, with Berlin already targeted by Washington’s trade ire; a Brexit-paralyzed Britain; and a massively unpopular President Emmanuel Macron in France already threatening to impose his own sanctions if Tehran does not agree to limit its ballistic missile program. Tehran will never allow inspections over its thriving missile industry – and this was never part of the JCPOA to begin with.

As it stands, the EU3 are not buying Iranian oil. They are meekly abiding by the U.S. banking and oil/gas sanctions — which are now extended to manufacturing sectors — and doing nothing to protect Iran from its nasty effects. The implementation of INSTEX, the SWIFT alternative for trade with Iran, is languishing. Besides expressing lame “regrets” about the U.S. sanctions, the EU3 are de facto playing the game on the side of U.S., Israel, Saudi Arabia and the Emirates; and by extension against Russia, China and Iran.

Rise of the Imperial Psychos

As Tehran de facto kicked the ball to the European court, both EU3 options are dire. To meaningfully defend the JCPOA will invite a ballistic reaction from the Trump administration. To behave like poodles — the most probable course of action — means emboldening even more the psychopaths doubling as imperial functionaries bent on a hot war against Iran at all costs; Koch brothers Big Oil asset and enraptured evangelist, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, and paid Mujahideen-e Khalq asset and notorious intel manipulator, National Security Advisor John Bolton.

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The Pompeo-Bolton gangster maneuver is hardly Bismarck’s Realpolitik. It consists of relentlessly pushing Tehran to make a mistake, any mistake, in terms of “violating” its obligations under the JCPOA, so that this may be sold to gullible American public opinion as the proverbial “threat” to the “rules-based order” doubling as a casus belli.

There’s one thing the no-holds-barred U.S. economic war against Iran has managed to achieve: internal unity in the Islamic Republic. Team Rouhani’s initial aim for the JCPOA was to open up to Western trade (trade with Asia was always on) and somewhat curtail the power of the IRGC, or Revolutionary Guards, which control vast sectors of the Iranian economy.

Washington’s economic war proved instead the IRGC was right all along, echoing the finely-tuned geopolitical sentiment of Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei, who always emphasized the Americans cannot be trusted, ever.

And as much as Washington has branded the IRGC a “terrorist organization,” Tehran replied in kind, branding CENTCOM the same.

Independent Persian Gulf oil traders dismiss the notion that the kleptocrat House of Saud — de facto run by Jared “of Arabia” Kushner’s Whatsapp pal Mohammed bin Salman (MbS), the Saudi  crown prince – holds up to 2.5 million barrels of oil a day in spare capacity capable of replacing Iran’s 2 million barrels of exports (out of 3.45 million of total daily production). The House of Saud seems more interested in hiking oil prices for Asian customers.

London protests at Saudi bombing of Yemen. March 2018. (Alisdare Hickson via Flickr)

Faulty Blockade

Washington’s energy trade blockade of Iran is bound to fail.

China will continue to buy its 650,000 barrels a day – and may even buy more. Multiple Chinese companies trade technology and industrial services for Iranian oil.

Pakistan, Iraq and Turkey — all bordering Iran — will continue to buy Iranian high-quality light crude by every method of payment (including gold) and transportation available, formal or informal. Baghdad’s trade relationship with Tehran will continue to thrive.

As economic suffocation won’t suffice, Plan B is — what else — the threat of a hot war.

It’s by now established that the info, in fact rumors, about alleged Iranian maneuvers to attack U.S. interests in the Gulf was relayed to Bolton by the Mossad, at the White House, with Israeli National Security Adviser Meir Ben Shabbat personally briefing Bolton.

Everyone is aware of the corollary: a “reposition of assets” (in Pentagonese) — from the USS Abraham Lincoln carrier strike group deployment to four B-52 bombers landing in Al Udeid Air base in Qatar, all part of a “warning” to Iran.

A pre-war roaring crescendo now engulfs the Lebanese front as well as the Iranian front.

Reasons for Psychotic Rage

Iran’s GDP is similar to Thailand’s, and its military budget is similar to Singapore’s. Bullying Iran is a geopolitical and geo-economic absurdity. Iran may be an emerging Global South actor — it could easily be a member of the G20 — but can never be construed as a “threat” to the U.S.

Yet Iran provokes psychopathic imperial functionaries to a paroxysm of rage for three serious reasons. Neocons never mind that trying to destroy Iraq cost over $6 trillion — and it was a major war crime, a political disaster, and an economic abyss all rolled into one. Trying to destroy Iran will cost untold trillions more.

The most glaring reason for the irrational hatred is the fact the Islamic Republic is one of the very few nations on the planet consistently defying the hegemon — for four decades now.

The second reason is that Iran, just like Venezuela — and this is a combined war front — have committed the supreme anathema; trading on energy bypassing the petrodollar, the foundation stone of U.S. hegemony.

The third (invisible) reason is that to attack Iran is to disable emerging Eurasia integration, just like using NSA spying to ultimately put Brazil in the bag was an attack on Latin American integration.

The non-stop hysteria over whether President Donald Trump is being maneuvered into war on Iran by his pet psychopaths – well, he actually directed Iran to Call me — eludes the Big Picture. As shown before, a possible shut down of the Strait of Hormuz, whatever the reasons, would be like a major meteor impact on the global economy. And that would inevitably translate as no Trump reelection in 2020.

The Strait of Hormuz would never need to be blocked if all the oil Iran is able to export is bought by China, other Asian clients and even Russia — which could relabel it. But Tehran wouldn’t blink on blocking Hormuz if faced with total economic strangulation.

According to a dissident U.S. intel expert, “the United States is at a clear disadvantage in that if the Strait of Hormuz is shut the U.S. collapses. But if the U.S. can divert Russia from defending Iran, then Iran can be attacked and Russia will have accomplished nothing, as the neocons do not want detente with Russia and China. Trump does want detente but the Deep State does not intend to permit it.”

Assuming this scenario is correct, the usual suspects in the United States government are trying to divert Putin from the Strait of Hormuz question while keeping Trump weakened, as the neocons proceed 24/7 on the business of strangling Iran. It’s hard to see Putin falling for this not exactly elaborate trap.

Not Bluffing

So what happens next? Professor Mohammad Marandi at the Faculty of World Studies of the University of Tehran offers quite a sobering perspective: “After 60 days Iran will push things even further. I don’t think the Iranians are bluffing. They will also be pushing back at the Saudis and the Emiratis by different means.”

Marandi, ominously, sees “further escalation” ahead:

“Iranians have been preparing for war with the Unites States ever since the Iraq invasion in 2003. After what they’ve seen in Libya, in Syria, Yemen, Venezuela, they know that the Americans and Europeans are utterly brutal. The whole shore of the Persian Gulf on the Iranian side and the Gulf of Oman is full of tunnels and underground high-tech missiles. The Persian Gulf is full of ships equipped with highly developed sea-to-sea missiles. If there is real war, all the oil and gas facilities in the region will be destroyed, all the tankers will be destroyed.”

And if that show comes to pass, Marandi regards the Strait of Hormuz as the “sideshow”:

“The Americans will be driven out of Iraq. Iraq exports 4 million barrels of oil a day; that would probably come to an end, through strikes and other means. It would be catastrophic for the Americans. It would be catastrophic for the world – and for Iran as well. But the Americans would simply not win.”

So as Marandi explains it — and Iranian public opinion now largely agrees — the Islamic Republic has leverage because they know “the Americans can’t afford to go to war. Crazies like Pompeo and Bolton may want it, but many in the establishment don’t.”

Tehran may have developed a modified MAD (Mutually Assured Destruction) framework as leverage, mostly to push Trump ally MbS to cool down. “Assuming,” adds Marandi, “the madmen don’t get the upper hand, and if they do, then it’s war. But for the time being, I thinks that’s highly unlikely.”

Guided-missile destroyer USS Porter transits Strait of Hormuz, May 2012. (U.S. Navy/Alex R. Forster)

All Options on the Table?

In Cold War 2.0 terms, from Central Asia to the Eastern Mediterranean and from the Indian Ocean to the Caspian Sea, Tehran is able to count on quite a set of formal and informal alliances. That not only centers on the Beirut-Damascus-Baghdad-Tehran-Herat axis, but also includes Turkey and Qatar. And most important of all, the top actors on the Eurasian integration chessboard: the Russia and China in strategic partnership.

When Zarif met Lavrov last week in Moscow, they discussed virtually everything: Syria (they negotiate together in the Astana, now Nur-Sultan process), the Caspian, the Caucasus, Central Asia, the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (of which Iran will become a member), the JCPOA and Venezuela.

The Trump administration was dragged kicking and screamoing to meet Kim Jong-Un at the same table because of the DPRK’s intercontinental ballistic missile tests. And then Kim ordered extra missile tests because, in his own words, as quoted by KCNA, “genuine peace and security of the country are guaranteed only by the strong physical force capable of defending its sovereignty.”

Global South Watching

The overwhelming majority of Global South nations are watching the U.S. neocon offensive to ultimately strangle “the Iranian people”, aware more than ever that Iran may be bullied to extinction because it does not posses a nuclear deterrent. The IRGC has reached the same conclusion.

That would mean the death of the JCPOA – and the Return of the Living Dead of “all options on the table.”

But then, there’ll be twists and turns in the Art of the (Demented) Deal. So what if, and it’s a major “if”, Donald Trump is being held hostage by his pet psychopaths?

Let The Dealer speak:

“We hope we don’t have to do anything with regard to the use of military force…We can make a deal, a fair deal. … We just don’t want them to have nuclear weapons. Not too much to ask. And we would help put them back into great shape. They’re in bad shape right now. I look forward to the day where we can actually help Iran. We’re not looking to hurt Iran. I want them to be strong and great and have a great economy… We have no secrets. And they can be very, very strong, financially. They have great potential.”

Then again, Ayatollah Khamenei said: the Americans cannot be trusted, ever.

Pepe Escobar, a veteran Brazilian journalist, is the correspondent-at-large for Hong Kong-based Asia Times. His latest book is 2030.” Follow him on Facebook.

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37 comments for “PEPE ESCOBAR: Iran Squeezed Between Imperial Psychos and European Cowards

  1. Zhu
    May 19, 2019 at 01:15

    Excellent article, Mr Escobar! You always present the big picture very clearly.

  2. Dave Ross
    May 18, 2019 at 12:17

    Iran could lower the temperature by ending it’s threats against Israel. Threatening Israel does nothing to feed Iran’s people. The US would still have interests that clash with Iran’s but they would easier to deal with. It is not in Iran’s interest to frighten Israel to the point that it makes a preemptive strike. That would be a disaster for everyone. One of the most powerful pressures on the US is to avoid that happening. Iran could stop threatening Israel with extermination and give up on nuclear weapons while modernizing its military to dominate the gulf more than it does today. That would make the US fear attacking them without Israel fearing an existential threat from Iran. That is probably the only way to avoid war. A conventional military capable of closing the straight of Hormuz for a long time is as good a deterrent than nuclear weapons. Its like having your hand around the scrotum of the developed world.

    • Gyre07
      May 19, 2019 at 22:47

      I agree. Iran should continue to use whatever bully pulpit’s are available to it to make reasoned complaints to the international community, not idiotic quasi-rant threats towards Israel. As you said, it serves no strategic interest of their that anybody can seem to articulate, and seems child-like to any westerner with more than a sixth grade education. Very Trumpian actually.

  3. May 15, 2019 at 08:51

    Historically, sanctions have been a prelude to war, for example the oil embargo against Japan in summer 1941 that led to Pearl Harbor. The economic war against Iran could lead to war, indirectly world war. Today there are reports that the US is sending 120,000 troops to the Middle East for deployment against Iran. World war could result because Russia and China have vital interests to protect in the region. Neither could allow instability or regime change in Iran, the consequences would not be confined to that country’s borders, spreading into other Central Asian states. Their intervention would lead the nuclear powers into direct confrontation. The cycle of history shows we are nearing Armageddon.
    https://www.ghostsofhistory.wordpress.com/

    • old geezer
      May 15, 2019 at 11:14

      quite accurate.

      the norks couldn’t wipe their hindsides without permission from peking. the nork nuke program is bought and paid for by american consumers via chinese exports, the proceeds of which float the nork regime, ironic.

      iran’s “ right “ to nuclear bombs is aligned with russian strategy to destabilize american allies in the me. of course the last resident of 1600 pennsylvania ave did his part to help that effort. how exactly do you define the right side of history ? by mid wifing the caliphate ? supporting the muslim brotherhood take over of egypt ? not the classic definition of einsteinian insanity, that one had never been tried before.

      and as we all know, everything wrong with the world is due to white men, especially american white men. if only we could get rid of them all. then nirvanna will sweep the world. be careful what you wish for. be very careful.

      the current crop on the ameriken left illustrates the wisdom of the ancients, “ those the gods would destroy, they first make mad “.

      myself included, i never see any decent ideas worth a damn about what to do next. nothing better than praying. what i often see are highly articulate surrender mongers who know with agreed absolute certainty, the fastest way to end a war is to surrender.

  4. Nelson
    May 14, 2019 at 22:03

    Has Venezuela activated sleeper cells in the US? Not much to go on but the dates and involvement of Exxon and Houston are an interesting coincidence with Venezuela’s predicament. In the California fire I can’t find a relationship other than the time element which puts a lot of fires in the same small window and they all involve oil. I live at the San Diego border and terrorists have been crossing over for a long time.

    Hizbullah and Iran have contingency plans for attacks on American diplomatic and other targets across Europe, Africa, Asia, and here at home. They don’t need to rely on Mexican drug cartels to hit inside America.

    from…
    Will Israel Really Strike Iran?
    Bruce RiedelWednesday, November 2, 2011

    March 13
    China Backs Venezuela And Offers Help to Restore Power
    March 13, 2019

    President Maduro assured that the attacks came from two U.S. cities, Houston and Chicago and that they have proof of how the sabotage was perpetrated.

    March 17
    Fire breaks out at a Houston-area petrochemicals terminal
    Posted on Sunday, March 17th, 2019 By The Associated Press

    The fire is the second in as many days at a Houston-area petrochemical facility. A fire at an ExxonMobil plant in nearby Baytown that broke out Saturday has been contained.

    Exon as you know is Venezuela’ old foe. In 2007, Venezuela’s then-president, Hugo Chavez, nationalized Exxon’s assets in the country.

    March 16
    CARSON, Calif. (KABC) — Firefighters battled a raging blaze at an oil refinery in Carson on Friday.

  5. David Walters
    May 14, 2019 at 16:07

    Europeans = Vassals of the U.S. Don’t expect any friction against the U.S. from them no matter how dastardly the U.S. acts.

    Iran threatens Israel’s dream of Greater Israel. Israel runs the U.S. Therefore, U.S. threatens Iran.

    That’s how it works…period.

  6. Tomonthebeach
    May 14, 2019 at 15:13

    If the area does go gunz-free, this will not be another Vietnam, or Iraq, or Syria, or Bosnia, or Venezuela. Iran is better trained and highly motivated than any other military force in the region. Any belief that the US Navy can break an Iranian blockade has not read the news in a decade. The only time the US Navy gets in the news is when sappers blow holes in their parked ships while they are ashore partying, or they are whacking into merchant ships while the captain snoozes because their crews lack rudimentary seamanship skills. Navy has not done a successful mine sweep under fire since Vietnam (I was there for that last sweep). In fact, the Navy minesweeper fleet is a relic from that era.

  7. BraveNewWorld
    May 14, 2019 at 01:17

    Here is my question. The Security Council of the UN doesn’t exist just to have another place for psychotic women from the US to scream for murdering more Muslims. It is carved out for those members with enough clout and the will to stand up for the principles and decisions of the UN or in other words they are given their special privileged in exchange for a commitment to stand up for the decisions and principles of the UN.

    When I look at the UK, Britain and France they currently fail in every single regard. None of them have particular significant armed forces any more. They don’t have any political pull. So in reality they have no juice. Finally the JCPOA is a UN agreement signed off by the UNSC and negotiated by these countries. These countries are failing to stand up for the principles and decisions of the UN. So why are they still on the UNSC?

    I know they would never agree to step down on their own and there is no mechanism to make them do so. But that doesn’t mean every other country couldn’t pack up and leave and start a new organization that reflects the reality of the world today just as the League of Nations was brushed aside to make room for the UN. After all it is better to be in a weak organization trying to do the right thing than it is to be in a strong organization trying to do the wrong thing.

  8. old geezer
    May 14, 2019 at 00:33

    looking for the 12th iman to crawl out of his hole in the ground since, what was the year ?

    screaming death to america since 1979 ( i know, it was just for local consumption )

    many think the iranians already have a quite a few nukes, but not tested. things could get interesting real quick if so. the good news iran would be glass. i wonder how many stealth nuclear tipped cruise missiles are already prepped with iranian coordinates. the israeli versions are not low yield.

    what exactly does the leaderships of iran want ? to be able to do nuclear blackmail ? a very bad gamble. iran is setting itself up to be a first struck target.

    • wise juan
      May 14, 2019 at 08:21

      I`m old too, but fortunately for me, without your mental
      deterioration. Ha ha Wishful thing on your part geeze
      The u.s has been unable to defeat anyone since WW2,
      and that ain`t changing anytime soon. You won`t be even
      able to afford your dementia meds if war with Iran happens.
      I don`t want to confuse you even more, so I`ll leave it
      there

      • old geezer
        May 14, 2019 at 11:21

        fwiw, the leadership in iran says a particular entity should be wiped from the face of the earth ( i know, for local consumption ). my suspicion is that particular entity has nuclear tipped stealth cruise missiles of a hydrogen design. i would if i were them.

        i always find it fascinating how the descendants of egyptian slaves are so dangerous to the followers of a perfect man who demonstrated his perfection with his illiteracy, pedophilia and mass murdering methods.

        people are fallible. some much more than others.

      • David Walters
        May 14, 2019 at 16:11

        Pretty cool response, Juan.

    • Anarcissie
      May 14, 2019 at 11:47

      I think it is an error to suppose that nuclear weapons confer omnipotence. I think you should take a few minutes to think it through.

    • Felix_47
      May 14, 2019 at 11:49

      The death to America refrain was and is an expensive mistake for the Iranians. People react to images. If there is war it will be expensive for the US but far more expensive for the clerical dictatorship. Iranians are not stupid …why wave a red cape in front of the dumb witted bull by burning US flags and chanting DTA?! And there is a huge Iranian diaspora in the US, Canada and Europe.

    • Abe
      May 14, 2019 at 16:04

      Dear hilarious Hasbara geezer and comrades,

      Looking for the mashiach to crawl out of some hole in the ground since, what was the year?

      Screaming “death to Arabs” since before 1948 ( I know, it wasn’t just for local racist Zionist consumption )

      We know the Israelis already have a quite a few nukes. The “good news” is that Israel will be glass when it uses them. The Jewish Zionist’s Christian Zionist comrades are praying for a shiny surface when their version of mashiach comes in for a landing.

      What exactly does the leaderships of Israel want? Their post-1967 nuclear blackmail strategy has proven a very bad gamble. Israel is setting itself up to be the first target for “perfection” from the sky.

      what exactly does the leaderships of iran want ? to be able to do nuclear blackmail ? a very bad gamble. iran is setting itself up to be a first struck target.

  9. anti_republocrat
    May 13, 2019 at 23:32

    I note Pepe’s reference to the “rules-based order.” Piotr Berman commented on the latest MoA post, pointing out that the website of United Nations Association of Australia defines the “rules-based order”:

    “The rules-based international order can generally be described as a shared commitment by all countries to conduct their activities in accordance with ***agreed rules that evolve over time***, such as international law, regional security arrangements, trade agreements, immigration protocols, and cultural arrangements.”

    Amazing that they openly state that “we” make up the rules as we go along. Anybody want to play with “us?”

  10. KiwiAntz
    May 13, 2019 at 22:10

    What’s truly amazing, out of all of this, is that Iran is the only Country, besides Russia & China, that actually lived up to the terms of the JCPOA? It is America & its cowardly corrupt Allies that have reneged of the deal? The barefaced hypocrisy of America & the Trump administration to demand & dictate that Iran must comply to the terms of the JCPOA despite the USA’s illegal withdrawal from the deal, then trying to sabotage what was left, defies belief? And now Europe needs to grow a pair & stand up to the US Bully & tyrant & it has 60 days to put its money where its mouth is & fulfill its obligations under the JCPOA deal & lift the illegal sanctions & economic seige that America is imposing on Iran! Honor your word Europe & honor your commitment’s to International Law & agreements such as the JCPOA, unlike the dishonest, disingenuous USA, whose name, word & promises is as false & as worthless as the paper its written on!

  11. Jeff Harrison
    May 13, 2019 at 18:41

    Great as always, Pepe. I’d put all my assets in gold if I were you; I am. The neo-cons are too arrogant and overconfident (despite never winning) and they will probably cause Iran to close the strait and crash the world economy. As they say in Farsi – Tammam Chaud.

  12. jmg
    May 13, 2019 at 18:02

    Escobar’s excellent article brings to mind Iran’s very impressive reply to the U.S. last year. It would have deserved a full read on American TV:

    Iran responds to Pompeo’s demands
    http://theduran.com/iran-responds-to-pompeos-demands/

  13. hetro
    May 13, 2019 at 16:40

    This analysis from the always insightful Pepe Escobar and others indicates Iran is not only fed up with the duplicity of the US and double-talk, as with the last quotation of Trump (one wants to say are you nuts? you ripped up the JCPOA agreement on what you say you want!), it is insulated with partners as well as well-armed in itself. If a false flag is implemented, which is immediately what comes to mind given historical precedent, we will not simply have pretext for invasion of Iran, we will have World War III. At that point gas prices having multiplied 5 x 10 times at home by that point will be the lesser problem as we look at On the Beach II.

    Trump’s response is to speak as with that last quotation in Pepe’s article in the vernacular of a grandaddy soothing his children that all will be well because he has his rogue nutcases under his protective elbow and is “tempering” them. Plus that he’s just a nice guy doing what the world needs to make everybody economically satiated and, hell, beyond MAGA it’s now MWGA, and he’s just the ticket to pull this off, so be sure to vote Trump in 2020.

    We need a lot of luck given the stupidities currently in play, reminding of preliminaries let’s say starting around 1936 leading on to September 1, 1939. We absolutely have to keep reading, talking, and trying to figure out what to do. I’m not yet at digging an air raid shelter in my back yard (tools for building these probably on sale at Amazon?).

    • Gene Poole
      May 14, 2019 at 04:03

      Build Your Own Backyard Doomsday Bunker/Fallout Shelter:
      https://www.amazon.com/Backyard-Bunker-Fallout-Shelter-Doomsday-ebook/dp/B00EEFJ134

      • Anarcissie
        May 14, 2019 at 11:59

        The problem of a serious attack on Iran will not be a direct nuclear response, it will be the loss of Middle Eastern oil for an indefinite period. Without oil, or only very expensive oil, North America and Europe will go hungry and freeze. Iran does not need huge weapons; it just needs a lot of little weapons, which it probably has already.

  14. Realist
    May 13, 2019 at 16:40

    Dare I say this, but in retrospect it seems that we’d have a more stable world, one not on the knife’s edge of world war, if Iran HAD acquired nukes a couple of decades ago. If a few of those “loose nukes” everyone was concerned about in Russia after the fall of the Soviet Union had made their way into Iran, or if China or Pakistan had gifted a few of their H-bombs to the ayatollahs, just as Uncle Sam looked the other way when the rambunctious rabbis filched nukes from the U.S. arsenal, the maniacs at Langley and Arlington might not be preparing for the eve of destruction today.

    Iran has never struck me as suicidal, so they are no more likely to impulsively fire off a nuke in the general direction of Israel or an American aircraft carrier unless attacked first with an extinction-level device by the “good guys” with pale skins. By the same reasoning, I would contend that they presently have no intention of any first strike against the West, no matter how intense the bullying by Washington. But they will strike back, no matter the price. They will not be WILLING martyrs, and if forced into the role, they will drag plenty of Christian and Jewish martyrs into the mix. The scenario floated by Pompeo and Bolton is pure bushwah. Any alleged first strike by Iran will be an utter fabrication, yet one more false flag by the Great Deceivers in Washington.

    From the future movie, “It WAS a Wonderful Life:” “Anytime you hear a bomb explode, some NATO butcher has earned his horns.”

  15. Robert
    May 13, 2019 at 15:26

    If there was any imminent Iranian threat to Israel, the IDF would have already dealt with it. This leave me to conclude that Bolton moved the aircraft carrier armada to the ME to deliberately set them up for a false flag attack to blame Iran. The media propaganda is already in place and the Iranians are cooperating with their usual hot air bluster. A single firecracker from any number of groups would provoke massive US military “retaliation” on Iran. The potential sources for this false flag attack are 1) MEK (an anti-Iranian terrorist group removed from the US terrorist list by Hillary Clinton with CIA support, then moved to Albania by John McCain to use a private anti-Iranian militia); 2) Saudi Arabia; 3) Al Qaeda/ISIS; 4) Turkey; 5) Israel; and 6) rogue groups within Iran itself. The US does not need an armada with B-52 support to deal effectively with either oil shipments or Iranian rowboats.

  16. Jill
    May 13, 2019 at 15:02

    I’m not certain if it was here or somewhere else but it has been pointed out that Europe is going to be THE blast zone if the US gets it way. It seems that Europe is “run” (into the ground) by persons who are no less evil and insane than those who are “running” (into the ground) the US.

    I have no other explanation why not one of our European allies has publicly tried to stop the US from destroying the planet. They must want it too??? If so, why?

    The US will not use diplomacy to solve problems. Juan Guido isn’t talking about a peace plan. He’s talking to the US military and begging them (at our instigation of course) to invade and kill his fellow country’s citizens. Last time, April 30th, Canada actually helped stop the madness by saying in no uncertain terms that there can be no military response, only a peaceful, diplomatic resolution for Venezuela.

    I must admit to being shocked that our traditional lackey said this, yet we need them to do it again and we need at least one of our European lackeys to say the same concerning Iran.

    • MarkU
      May 13, 2019 at 16:59

      “It seems that Europe is “run” (into the ground) by persons who are no less evil and insane than those who are “running” (into the ground) the US.”

      I agree and the explanation is that it is run by pretty much the same people. Take the UK, 2/3 of our parliament are in “friends of Israel” organisations.

  17. mike k
    May 13, 2019 at 14:31

    The Empire is reduced to making wild threats all over the globe, knowing that real military action could be a disaster. Constant threats that are never backed up with action eventually lead to those being threatened to be emboldened to ignore the would be bully. Will the Empire see this reality and be pushed to do something rash to prove it’s power? If Trump is the only one in Washington capable of heading off this fatal mistake – we are in very deep trouble indeed.

    • boxerwar
      May 13, 2019 at 15:27

      I fully embrace your every word, mike k and am very glad to see you here/hear again.

      I AM IN CONPLETE AGREEMENT WITH YOUR “DEEP TROUBLE” ASSESSMENT!!!!

      Malleable POTUS Contends for Military Triumphalism

      thru defeat and destruction of Israel’s Ancient Historical enemy,

      the Iranians / (former) Persians, and the Dictator Netanyahu

      gets to Re-play ‘Samson’ (and Sharon) in a Wipe Out of and

      Holocaustic “Final Solution”to the “Palestinian Problem.”

      The Bombastic Trump and Ghoulish Bebe Netanyahu

      will reap their Earned Rewards in the “Final Judgment”

      with all the unethical/immoral / unscrupulous / Devious

      Persons-of -Authority as authoritarian Structure/Presumed

      by ‘Rule of Law’ by and for ‘The People’/NOT the “President”

      nor the 5 Term Re-“Elected” Dictator absorbed after Rabin’s

      Public Murder orchestrated by the Dictator Bibi Netanyahu

      YOU’RE among The Fools/Fooled, if you know not the history

      of this and of ZIONISM- and of American Industrial Investment

      into German chemical/industrial production and Technology and into
      the what-not\ WALL STREET investment in German technology. …

      https://www.globalresearch.ca/trump-set-up-war-iran/5677311

      • vinnieoh
        May 14, 2019 at 10:36

        You said: “thru defeat and destruction of Israel’s Ancient Historical enemy,”

        I am no scholar of the region but what I have read indicates that this is simply not true. There was a Persian king (Cyrus?) that praised Israelites as god’s chosen people and attempted to rebuild a temple for them in Jerusalem. Throughout the many centuries of “the diaspora” those Jews close enough to Persia fled from pogroms in eastern Europe to Persia because it was known to be a safe haven. Even today after all the bitter fighting, Jews live and are left to worship in Iran and all such studies that look at these things state that of all the nations in the region “anti-Semitism” is at its lowest in Iran.

        After the US/UK manufactured coup in Iran in’53 and the US installed the Shah as Iran’s puppet ruler the US and the Israelis built for the Shah the infamous SAVAK secret political police. Now THERE is a seminal event of this whole mess. During the period between the coup and the resulting Islamic revolution in ’79 the US and Israel were great friends and collaborators of the puppet government of the Shah. It was not until the Islamic revolution that Iranian Islamists began referring to the US as The Great Satan and Israel as The Little Satan. The Zionists of Israel hate Iran because they hate and will attempt to destroy any and all that oppose their expansionist agenda. There is nothing anciently historical about it.

        Of course the real ancient enemy of Shiite Iran (formerly Persia) are the Wahhabist Sunnis. A feud about the right of succession after the death of Muhamad. It is interesting, considering the common roots of Hebrews, Christians, and Muslims, that Christianity escaped this particular feud because their foremost prophet was allegedly “the son of god” a supernatural being temporarily manifest in human form. (Of course there was that other feud sparked by Martin Luther over the unbroken chain of the body and blood of Jesus Christ, and the corrupt bureaucracy of the Roman Catholic church.) No similar claims were made by or for Mohamad and subsequently he left his tribalistic and jealous followers to sink into that most human of activities, a centuries long food fight over the right of succession. The Sunnis consider Shiites apostates and polytheists, the worst accusations that can be uttered amongst the Islamic faithful. For what it’s worth, after the ’79 revolution Ayatollah Khomeini proposed a rapprochement between the two sects, but the Saudi’s would have none of it.

        If the Saudis or the Sunnis in the UAE believe that the Zionists are now their good buds, they will before long be disabused of this notion. Just like the neocon exceptionalist hegemons of the US (Pepe’s hollow men,) the Zionists are no-ones friend.

  18. mark
    May 13, 2019 at 12:39

    I don’t see why Iran can’t just make a deal with the United States. After all, the Red Indians made 330, and they all worked out perfectly well, didn’t they?

    • Nathan Mulcahy
      May 13, 2019 at 22:42

      You cannot trust USA. Ask the native Americans, and more recently Russians.

      • Zhu
        May 19, 2019 at 01:50

        Re “enraptured evangelist, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo”, I’m glad you are ake Dispensationalists seriously, Mr Escobar! Nutty motivations are still motivations.

    • AnneR
      May 14, 2019 at 09:35

      Quite, mark. It really is a great pity – especially for those on the receiving end of our “humanitarianism,” of our “democratization strategies” – that anyone, any nation trusts the US (or the UK for that matter) to honor their “word,” their “treaties,” “agreements.” A little clear headed, honest historical knowledge of the American way of “doing business” (essentially the British way in origin) would put anyone beyond its shores on their guard. And have them ensure that they were well-stocked with nukes.

      (And anyway – what gives the planet’s major nuke holder/owner the right to tell other countries they can’t have them???? Never, on the two MSM lying, propagandist radio broadcasters that are on in this dwelling, do I hear anyone ever raise this issue. Nor that there is a fundamental hypocrisy in requiring that smaller, poorer nations be completely vulnerable to our attacks while we – thousands of miles away – have thousands and thousands of nuclear missiles, bombs, what have you.

      And, as an earlier poster wrote: Iran would be far less vulnerable had it got a nuclear arsenal, even a small one. IF Israel can have one….

      Iran is clearly more honorable than FUKUSIS… it has abided by its agreements.

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