Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
June 24, 2019

Trump Seeks 'Coalition Of The Willing' Against Iran

After a somewhat quiet weekend the Trump administration today engaged in another push against Iran.

Today the Treasury Department sanctioned the leaders of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC). It also sanctioned Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei and his office! There will be no more Disney Land visits for them.

There is more to come:

Josh Rogin - @joshrogin - 16:18 utc - 24 Jun 2019

Mnuchin: "The president has instructed me that we will be designating [Iran's foreign minister Javad] Zarif later this week." cc: @JZarif

The Treasury Secretary will designate Javad Zarif as what? A terrorist? Zarif is quite effective in communicating the Iranian standpoint on Twitter and other social media. Those accounts will now be shut down.

The Trump administration's special envoy for Iran, Brian Hook, said today that Iran should respond to U.S. diplomacy with diplomacy. Sanctioning Iran's chief diplomat is probably not the way to get there.

All those who get sanctioned by the U.S. will gain in popularity in Iran. These U.S. measures will only unite the people of Iran and strengthen their resolve.

Iran will respond to this new onslaught by asymmetric means of which it has plenty.

On Saturday Trump said that all he wants is that Iran never gets nuclear weapons. But the State Department wants much more. Hook today said that the U.S. would only lift sanctions if a comprehensive deal is made that includes ballistic missile and human rights issues. Iran can not agree to that. But this is not the first time that Pompeo demanded more than Trump himself. Is it Pompeo, not Trump, who is pressing this expanded version to make any deal impossible?

Brian Hook is by the way a loon who does not even understand the meaning of what he himself says:

laurence norman @laurnorman - 10:53 utc - 24 Jun 2019

US Hook says Iran knew what getting into when struck deal with president who had 1 1/2 yr left in office. "They knew what they were getting into...They knew that there was a great possibility that the next president could come in & leave the deal." Note: US elections 17 months away

Those are two good arguments for Iran to never again agree to any deal with the 'non-agreement-capable' United States.

It seems obvious from the above that the Trump administration has no real interest in reasonable negotiations with Iran:

“The administration is not really interested in negotiations now,” said Robert Einhorn, a former senior State Department official who was involved in negotiations with Iranian officials during the Obama administration. “It wants to give sanctions more time to make the Iranians truly desperate, at which point it hopes the negotiations will be about the terms of surrender.”

That is part of the strategy. But the real issue is deeper:

Max Abrahms @MaxAbrahms - 16:41 utc - 24 Jun 2019

Pro tip: Sanctions against #Iran aren’t to retaliate for the downed drone or to punish tanker attacks or to improve the nuclear deal or to help the Iranian people but to foment revolution against the regime. The strategy is regime change with velvet gloves.

The U.S. now tries to build an international coalition against Iran. Trump invited China and Japan to protect their tankers in the Middle East:

Donald J. Trump @realDonaldTrump - 0:08 utc - 24 Jun 2019

China gets 91% of its Oil from the Straight, Japan 62%, & many other countries likewise. So why are we protecting the shipping lanes for other countries (many years) for zero compensation. All of these countries should be protecting their own ships on what has always been....
....a dangerous journey. We don’t even need to be there in that the U.S. has just become (by far) the largest producer of Energy anywhere in the world! The U.S. request for Iran is very simple - No Nuclear Weapons and No Further Sponsoring of Terror!

One wonders what the U.S. Central Command and the U.S. Navy will say when that Chinese carrier group arrives in the Gulf region.

Who else will join this?

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Sunday he wants to build a global coalition against Iran during urgent consultations in the Middle East, following a week of crisis that saw the United States pull back from the brink of a military strike on Iran.

Pompeo spoke as he left Washington for Saudi Arabia, followed by the United Arab Emirates, ..
"We’ll be talking with them about how to make sure that we are all strategically aligned, and how we can build out a global coalition, a coalition not only throughout the Gulf states, but in Asia and in Europe, that understands this challenge as it is prepared to push back against the world’s largest state sponsor of terror,” Pompeo said about Iran.

Pompeo was hastily sent to Saudi Arabia and the UAE. Brian Hook is now in Oman and Bolton is in Israel. The U.S. will also pressure Europe and NATO to join a new 'coalition of the willing'. The UK will likely follow any U.S. call as it needs a trade deal to survive after Brexit.

Other countries are best advised to stay out.

Posted by b on June 24, 2019 at 18:05 UTC | Permalink

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Perhaps a misunderstanding but what I wrote is not about who wins or loses but about what factor will determine wins and losses and it's not the ratio of soldiers.

The bases are the fortifications, they already exist and are already in use every day, they are already "dug in" in the modern meaning, they are not centralized but dispersed, their use has been established US strategy for a very long time and established military strategy since Roman times (before the start of our calendar).

"Human waves" doesn't work against modern weaponry, the Russian solution against the Chinese (back when they were sort of at war) was the "automated grenade gun" and everybody learnt from that. Whenever you see a very chubby/chunky and short heavy caliber belt fed (not talking about a normal grenade launcher with only a few rounds and these grenades are smaller) fireteam or squad "gun thing" which isn't a machine gun it's that kind of weapon you see (it's also used against light armor, cars etc.). Of course there are far more efficient solutions which are not "small arms" but these are enough on their own to illustrate the point.

Anyway I was hoping to read what people thought about that scenario up above which has nothing to do with this discussion.

Posted by: Sunny Runny Burger | Jun 27 2019 14:31 utc | 301

@yeah right... your comments sound very reasonable.. i think wars are unpredictable, but generally people tend to think the country that has all the power is in the commanding position.. in this case, you make a good case that ground troops will matter and that air power is not the only power... i am not sure how any of this would work out, but it is interesting conjecture on your part.. how do you compare this to the ground invasion of iraq under bush 1?? i can't remember the details, but iraq would have had many more people on the ground then the usa at the time.. thanks for your comments..

Posted by: james | Jun 27 2019 14:46 utc | 302

Et al--

Recall the Firebase Strategy used in Vietnam, which was very similar to the Frontier Fort strategy used against Native Americans. The latter succeeded only due to technological superiority; Custer's an example of what would have occurred if his example were followed. In Vietnam, there was no longer any technological advantage other than airpower, but that was negated although the lesson seems to not have been completely learned. Iraq's military was effectively reduced to that of Grenada due to sanctions, a decade of siege warfare and massive war crimes against civilian infrastructure and use of chemical weapons--depleted uranium. And its monolithic political structure built around Saddam was beyond fragile, which is why everything quickly collapsed. But, the Outlaw US Empire never won the victory in Iraq, and in Syria it never came close.

Taking the bases in Bahrain and Qatar do demand assets Iran lacks--air mobile assault--and landing ships capable of carrying tanks--LSTs. Its fast attack boats might be capable of holding a squad and its equipment at best as they aren't really made for that sort of op. As with most things, the devils in the details despite the attractive manpower advantage. Afghanistan poses similar problems of requiring air mobile attack methods for the lightening strike speed required. Iraq will neutralize whatever US forces are there, and the troops in Syria are effectively hostages unless airlifted out. To invade Iran, a D-Day sized armada would be the minimal required along with 100% air superiority. I don't know the specifics of all the Iran invasion wargames done, but I do know the US side has never won without cheating.

Some further interesting questions: What side would the Turkish troops in Qatar take? Would the Saudi troops in Bahrain stand or run? Will Salman and MbS risk their Kingdom as they stand to lose regardless of the damage inflicted on Iran? And what of Nuttyahoo; Hezbollah will bury Occupied Palestine with missiles and possibly a ground assault when Iran's attacked; is he willing to sacrifice his people for Rapturists?

All of the above Iranians surely know, and it seems they're showing a face fortified by confidence. They've even done a version of spitting in your enemy's face by bringing up previous use of atomic weapons by the Great Satan to show the world which nation is morally debased.

G-20 starts tomorrow. I still think Trump will walk out as the weak branches underneath him crack and he senses he's going to fall.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jun 27 2019 16:52 utc | 303

AmeriKKKa & "Israel's" Fake War on Terror in 16 words...

"Wars don't have to make sense, as long as people die and great profits are made."

Don Bacon | Jun 25, 2019 5:58:33 PM | 233

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Jun 27 2019 17:19 utc | 304

@ Avid Lurker | Jun 27, 2019 5:43:33 AM | 299

Wow! Thanks for the tip(s). You are going to have me busy at wikipedia just finding out what the words mean and then trying to translate said information for my ophthalmologist for advise. I wasn't aware all that was going on. About the only item I haven't a worry about is strenuous exercise, gout, fallen arches, wonky heart and achy hip see to that. Thanks again.

Posted by: Formerly T-Bear | Jun 27 2019 18:06 utc | 305

Formerly T-Bear @305--

It was my mom's eye specialist who told me when I asked what I might take to prevent macular degeneration that Lutein was it. Lutein is what comprises the film coating the retina that degrades to cause the disease. Taking the supplement helps prevent the degradation. Eye protection from UV is also a must beginning at a young age as damage does accumulate over time, thus the full cover anti-UV sunglasses seen worn by mostly seniors like us. Kale is the one veggie rich in Lutein. The supplement's expensive at markets, so I get mine through an outfit called Piping Rock, which specializes in dietary supplements.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jun 27 2019 18:26 utc | 306

@ karlof1 | Jun 27, 2019 2:26:29 PM | 306

Thanks for enlightening me about that. Neighbours here have mother with (wet) Macular Degeneration and took me to her (very good) specialist where I was informed my form was not treatable. My ophthalmologist has me on a vitamin supplement: Brudyretina having omega 3, vitamins B 1,2,3,6,12, C, E; Lutein; Zeaxantina; and minerals Se, Mn,Zn, Cu (reading from Spanish). Pricy stuff at 3 (1.5g) a day.

Am shocked about how much glue is needed to keep the various bits and pieces from falling off. One needs be very brave to face age; and courage. YMMV

Posted by: Formerly T-Bear | Jun 27 2019 18:54 utc | 307

Formerly T-Bear @307--

Yes, one requires the proper amount and balance of glues to continue. My brother calls Birthdays Continuancedays, which makes a great deal of sense! I'm buoyed by the stories like the one in my local newspaper today about a contest I didn't know about--National Senior Games--in which a local 90-year-old woman won a Gold in the 50-yard backstroke and Silver in the 100-yard backstroke. Wow! I said to myself. I'm 63 and I bet she'd beat me badly. I'd better start training! That would please my cardiologist and my partner! Interesting how we're whimsical about life and living when we're young and only get concerned about it all when we get older. Seems that attitude's backwards. If life were valued when we're young, perhaps wars would end and the Community of Man would become possible as very few would willingly throw their life away.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jun 27 2019 19:42 utc | 308

One more thing about Iran: if you look at it's topography, you will see that the entire western and Southern border is a big mountain chain that looks west and south onto the entire Persian Gulf area.

Cruise missiles wanting to attack past the area below the western flanks of those mountains, must get over them and cruise missiles do not have a good climb rate. Hence they must be fired from aircraft at altitude or given a good run at the mountains to gain altitude. It may not be feasible at all. There is a similar problem in attacking Syria's interior from the Mediterranean, but not as bad.

In either case they are going to be easy to "see" and the mountain range will enhance the range they will be able to see to.

Posted by: Bemildred | Jun 27 2019 19:58 utc | 309

@ karlof1 | Jun 27, 2019 3:42:08 PM | 308

Spanish for birthday is cumpleaños - a completed year(s) (to fulfil - completar). Simple, direct, good for all anniversaries of some event. Who was it complaining that youth was wasted on the young? Don't think it was Jack Benny or George Burns. Best burn your candle at both ends until the middle is gone, but it does seem strange that being over the hill sure looks like uphill from here. Mine is vintage 43 and it's still a new day each morning. Thanks for the information, I will see about a supplement to my supplement; cannot imagine what life would be without a book to read.

Posted by: Formerly T-Bear | Jun 27 2019 20:09 utc | 310

Sorry to bring down the level of discourse, but nothing spells willing(!) like eager beaver
wannabe Trudeau. Then there is Macron who could do with some diversion, and it is not
beyond the pale for the UK tories to grasp T another straw in order NOT to fulfill the pledge
that was Brexit (alternative spelling for treason: Brexit proceedings?).
No, Yemen is not enough slaughter for the PTB, by far.
Off-topic: I shudder to think of what will come out as a result of the last Bilderberg meeting.

Posted by: Mishko | Jun 27 2019 20:48 utc | 311

Rormerely T-Bear @310--

Cheers! Our Spanish heritage is where my brother came up with his witticism. I just began A Short History of Western Ideology: A Critical Account by Rolf Petri, 2018, published by Bloomsbury. It has a needed denseness that keeps me busy annotating.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jun 27 2019 21:28 utc | 312

@301 "The bases are the fortifications, they already exist and are already in use every day, they are already "dug in" in the modern meaning, they are not centralized but dispersed, their use has been established US strategy for a very long time and established military strategy since Roman times (before the start of our calendar)."

OK, a couple of points about that:
1) If they are dispersed then they can be defeated in detail i.e. an invading army can take them out one-at-a-time and in each case can bring their maximum firepower to bear on reducing *that* base before moving onto the *next* base.
2) I doubt very much that any of these bases are "fortified" in any plain meaning of the word - modern or otherwise - because I doubt very much that the USA has ever conceived of them being put under siege. A perimeter fence, yes. Barbed wire, yes. Security patrols, yes. But to actually defend against an *army* requires keeping the base out of range of artillery fire, and I doubt very, very much that any of those bases have either the requisite forward defensive positions nor anything like the manpower required to man those defenses even if they did exist. Which I doubt exist.
3) When, exactly, was the last time that "established US strategy" for defending against a siege has been put to the test? Khe Sanh? That was ONE base, and that one base contained many more US soldiers that CENTCOM has in any of their "dispersed bases" and during the entire course of that ONE siege the US was required to commit more troops than CENTCOM has in the *entire* Middle East.

" 'Human waves' doesn't work against modern weaponry," … I'm going to stop you right there and point out that you have just erected a straw man.

The Iranian armed forces are not ISIS. They are a modern, professional army that has all the equipment that modern, professional armies possess.
If they moved against the USA's "dispersed bases" they would bring with them heavy artillery, MLRS artillery, main battle tanks, the lot.

They would use that heavy artillery to crack open a gap in the defensive line, and then they would send troops into that gap to route the defenders.
They would *not* send "human waves" against a prepared defence. They would, instead, use "established US strategy" for defeating a defended position.

Again, you simply assume that the Iranians will do what you want them to do.
The Iranians aren't stupid. They won't run into the guns.
They will do what the USA Army would do if the positions were reversed: bring overwhelming firepower to bear until they open a gap in the defensive line, then attack *there*.

Posted by: Yeah, Right | Jun 28 2019 1:29 utc | 313

@302 James " but generally people tend to think the country that has all the power is in the commanding position"

My point is that the USA does not have "all the power".

It only thinks it does because it isn't *thinking* about what reaction it is going to provoke from Iran if it starts a shooting war.

Iran has an overwhelming advantage in ground-forces, and everyone in the USA from Donald Trump downwards is too dim to realize that Iran can use that to - well, heck, this ain't rocket-science, guys - overwhelm US ground forces in the region.

"how do you compare this to the ground invasion of iraq under bush 1??"

In both Gulf War 1 and Gulf War 2 the US Commanders (Schwarzkopf and Franks, respectively) did not make a single move - or launch a single air raid - until they had built up a massive US ground force. I'm talking 500,000 US military in both conflicts. And in both cases that ground force was built up first to defend against a pre-emptive attack by Saddam Hussein's army and then built up way, way beyond that until they had the forces to launch an offensive against that army.

It was only when that point was reached that the USAF and US Navy was let loose on Iraqi defenses, and not a moment before.

It is sad to say that current the US military leadership is so arrogant and so self-deluded that they make even Tommy Franks look like a military genius.

They came within (apparently) 10 minutes of launching air strikes against Iran without having made any effort to seriously reinforce CENTCOM ground forces.

THEY STILL HAVEN'T. They show no sign of planning to do so.

CENTCOM hasn't got remotely enough ground forces to prevent the Iranian army from running over the top of them.
If the USAF/Navy launches a air campaign against Iran the CENTCOM can kiss its sorry arse goodbye because that's exactly what Iran will do.

Posted by: Yeah, Right | Jun 28 2019 1:50 utc | 314

Yeah, Right wrote:

They will do what the USA Army would do if the positions were reversed: bring overwhelming firepower to bear until they open a gap in the defensive line, then attack *there*.

I pretty much agree and the ratio of available soldiers is not important for that because it will rely on technology and tactics and not the amount of people you have which is what I've been trying to get across.

Posted by: Sunny Runny Burger | Jun 28 2019 2:34 utc | 315

And of course it doesn't matter what I agree with or not, at least not to the single point I've been making all along.

Posted by: Sunny Runny Burger | Jun 28 2019 3:07 utc | 316

@315 "I pretty much agree and the ratio of available soldiers is not important for that because it will rely on technology and tactics and not the amount of people you have which is what I've been trying to get across"

The technology opens the gap i.e. it gets you inside the defensive line. You still need men to go in and overpower the defenders, and "the amount of people you have" is going to make a very, very big difference.

If you have the technology but not the men then the attacker is not going to win - they will reduce the defences to rubble, but the defenders will still fight from the rubble. At some point you have to overrun them, and for that "technology" is not enough. You need men. Lots and lots and lots of men.

The Mexicans had a huge advantage in men at the Alamo. But they couldn't overrun the fort until they could bring up artillery. Once they did the fort fell, because the defenders didn't have enough men to hold back the attack once that breach had been made.

This is exactly what would happen if Trump is stupid enough to launch an air campaign against Iran without massively increasing CENTCOM ground forces: one Alamo after another after another until CENTCOM has to surrender or be completely overrun.

Iran HAS the technology and definitely DOES understand the tactics required to crack open an undermanned US military base.
It has that *and* it has the numbers to overrun those bases once a crack has been made in the line.

Those bases will not stand a chance, and if they attempt to hunker down they will lose.

Posted by: Yeah, Right | Jun 28 2019 3:25 utc | 317

Yeah, Right @317--

I'd be curious to read your critique of my @303. Guess I'll need to find a wall map of the region so I can better plot things. For me, it's getting from Iran to those bases as rapidly and completely as possible as the whole operation of that sort reminds me a lot of WW2's Operation Market Garden but rather disparate with none of the elements able to support the other.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jun 28 2019 4:53 utc | 318

@ yeah, right... again - i pretty much agree with you and thank you for sharing your perspective on this... do you think the usa is going to send many more troops over to the middle east, and if so, do you think they are going to communicate this? i imagine it would come out if they did...

Posted by: james | Jun 28 2019 4:58 utc | 319

Yeah, Right

I doubt Trump intends a conventional attack on Iran for the same reasons as no other president has launched an attack. My thought based on what Trump has been saying, plus his nuclear posture review. Tridents in first, closely followed by low yield cruise missiles, aircraft following them in to clean up what is left of air defence along with bombers and ground penetraters to take as many underground missile positions as possible.
If Iran was on their own, they may have very little warning of this as a major visible build up would not be required. Sub launched missiles, long range bombers in the air from places like Diego Garcia. With the backing of Russia and its intel though, that scenario will not happen.
On the release of the NPR, Putin stated a nuclear attack on an ally would be treated the same as a nuclear attack on Russia, with the Russian honcho in Jerusalem stating clearly that Iran is an ally of Russia.
Trump put out the conventional feelers the other day and got them bitten off, nukes are now out, so he is now calling for a coalition of the killing.
for a coalition.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Jun 28 2019 7:09 utc | 320

Peter AU 1 that's why I found the scenario interesting.

I realize the scenario doesn't say how the US ends up with Iranian material (Russian collusion? Russian corruption? Iranian? Through third party? Something else?) but it is the inherent premise of the US having and showing proof where the radioactive isotopes and the MASINT and all that stuff is in order and unassailable and gives them the opportunity to have a new and greatly improved Powell moment in the UNSC which makes it interesting to me.

It makes it believable that they would think they could get away with it.

Posted by: Sunny Runny Burger | Jun 28 2019 10:04 utc | 321

Sunny Runny Burger

This appears to the main problem the US faces at the moment :)
"Chuck Schumer: ‘The American People Deserve A President Who Can More Credibly Justify War With Iran’"

In watching what is happening I strongly suspect now that Russia and China working with Iran are setting the US up for a major fall.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Jun 28 2019 10:58 utc | 322

I guess we'll know after next weekend, the US doesn't seem to have pulled any new nonsense so far today, maybe this one will be a quiet one.

Posted by: Sunny Runny Burger | Jun 28 2019 13:12 utc | 323

Formerly T-Bear @ 305

Uric acid crystals (gout) are well known to activate the NRLP3 inflammasome. As do many other so-called 'danger molecules' including bacterial LPS. Incidentally, the two major ketone bodies -- beta-hydroxybutyrate and acetoacetate -- both appear to have strong affinities for zinc.

Ketone bodies as signaling metabolites by Newman and Verdin (2014) is a critical landmark IMO. And the scenario I described extends to numerous other, seemingly unrelated, neurodegenerative disorders.

Posted by: Avid Lurker | Jun 28 2019 14:30 utc | 324

On further thought the 4th of July is coming up next Thursday and Washington DC would love to be that blatant so who knows.

Posted by: Sunny Runny Burger | Jun 28 2019 16:16 utc | 325

The Dirty Bomb False Flag--

As I understand them, dirty bombs must contain fissile material enriched close to the level required to make an actual bomb--greater than 50-60%. What's being discussed here is using Iran's excess 3% enriched uranium to star in this false flag, if I'm not mistaken. Wikipedia's Dirty Bomb entry omits this low grade contaminant from its list of likely agents used to produce a dirty bomb. The upshot being the likely traceability of whatever substance might be used makes this an unlikely device to be used for a false flag. And given the level of scrutiny applied to all Iranian radioactive facilities and output, it seems impossible to frame Iran in such an event.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jun 28 2019 16:18 utc | 326

@ Avid Lurker | Jun 28, 2019 10:30:12 AM | 324

Thanks for that link, I will study it closely and although terms and functions are remote from my daily experiences, I can get the gist and flow of the dynamics involved although missing a lot of the implications and subtleties involved. Interesting the final panel of that link and the relationships to health (presuming both positive and negative possibilities). I always figured 128 years would be a convenient middle age, though only the years of six 90 year olds are needed to cover the years of the modern era.

Maybe it would be better to continue this either on the last OT (35) or on whatever appears for OT later on the weekend and leave the balance of this thread to the good folks focused on the subject. I really appreciate what you've presented, it seems it is very like what I understand but haven't either the names or dynamics delineated precisely. Fortunately the deterioration is occurring slowly enough at this time; that too can change.

Posted by: Formerly T-Bear | Jun 28 2019 16:33 utc | 327

@319 "do you think the usa is going to send many more troops over to the middle east, and if so, do you think they are going to communicate this?"

Wrong question. I would imagine that the Pentagon knows it needs to send many more troops to the Middle East if the USA is going to go to war with Iran. They would be grossly incompetent if they didn't know that.

The issue is how forcefully they are impressing that on Trump, and if Trump is listening.

I have my doubts regarding both.

Posted by: Yeah, Right | Jun 29 2019 3:38 utc | 328

@318 "Guess I'll need to find a wall map of the region so I can better plot things."

Pretty straightforward: start marching from Abadan, by-pass Basra to impress on the Iraqi's that you have no territorial ambitions w.r.t. their territory, then keep marching until the troops reach Dubai or they have to stop from exhaustion - whichever comes first.

No troops via ship, though that would be a good way to run supplies to keep the troops marching.

Make noises that your target is Riyadh so the Saudi's run like stuck piggies to defend the capital, then don't go there: keep sweeping along the coast and watch as tanker traffic through the gulf drops to zero.

Remember: the aim is to disrupt US plans to destroy Iranian AA defences and then to pound Iranian infrastructure to rubble. Marching along the coast will do exactly that i.e. US airpower will have switch to ground support, and every sortie then means one less sortie against Iranian air defences, and one less sortie against Iranian infrastructure.

When the war finally stops Iran will still be intact = Iran wins.

Posted by: Yeah, Right | Jun 29 2019 3:49 utc | 329

Thank you for your thoughts karlof1.

Dirty bombs don't need fissile material at all, they only need radioactive material. U-235 is a great example of being the opposite; it is fissile but has a half-life of over 700 million years and thus it isn't supposed to be suitable for use in a dirty bomb.

This hasn't stopped the US from similar claims before; Jose Padilla was supposed to be making a dirty bomb using Uranium (unsure which isotope) but wasn't charged with it (mentioned in karlof1's Wikipedia link).

The problem is that the false flag "Iranian" attack doesn't have to be sensible, it only has to be "nuclear" and "Iranian". Note the values for depleted Uranium and commercial Uranium on this FAS page.

- Commercial Uranium is roughly the same as Iran's enriched Uranium.
- Depleted Uranium has been blamed for a lot of illness, birth defects, and deaths in places where the US has used DU ammunition.

From a rational public science perspective any "Iranian dirty bomb" that only creates a dust cloud of U-235 would be unimpressive as far as radioactivity is concerned but it would be worse than DU which is even less useful for a dirty bomb than Iranian commercial-level Uranium. I don't doubt that the psychological impact would be huge and give the US what they want.

Any perceived impossibility of the US gaining ownership of the Iranian enriched Uranium works to the advantage of the US if a dirty bomb can be shown to be of Iranian origin.

I don't know enough to say how feasible it is to use nuclear MASINT on enriched Uranium that hasn't been used in a nuclear reactor or how easy or hard it would be to fake it, and in addition and crucially how easy it would be to prove or disprove that one hasn't done anything like that. Such counterfeiting might be impossible as well or likewise benefit the US if it is only thought to be.

Posted by: Sunny Runny Burger | Jun 29 2019 18:41 utc | 330

SRB @330--

Thanks for taking time to weigh-in on that topic at the end of this essentially dead thread. There seem other possibilities based on the cited material as components for such a device that would make a good tread topic on its own. The heat ramped up against Iran in the run-up to the G-20 dissipated extremely quickly after the Jerusalem Conference where it was mads unequivocally clear that Iran's an Ally and strategic enough partner of Russia to warrant its protection under Russia's nuclear umbrella.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jun 30 2019 17:27 utc | 331

You're right and yeah time to let this one rest. Thank you :)

Posted by: Sunny Runny Burger | Jun 30 2019 19:14 utc | 332

- Both the US and the UK enjoyed an economic boost last year. It was the result of the announced Trade Tariffs on chinese exports to the US and the Brexit. Companies feared the (detrimental) consequences of those two upcoming events and started to order (much) more stuff than they actually needed for production in the next months.
- But now inventories in both the US and the UK are at record levels and now these companies are scaling back their purchases. Resulting in "weakening" economies. But all these inventories are a financial burden on the corporate sector.
- Brexit is a circus for the rubes. It doesn't matter who will be the next british prime minister. Both Hunt and B. Johnson (a.k.a. BlowJo, a play with his name) will have to make do with the same (economic, financial) cards that Theresa May had to play with as well. And these cards are NOT the best cards one would wish for.

Posted by: Willy2 | Jul 1 2019 7:42 utc | 333

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