Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
July 03, 2019

On Eve Of 4th Of July Parade U.S. Attempts To Lure Iran Into Shooting Down Another U.S. Plane

Today a manned U.S. reconnaissance plane entered Iranian airspace in a clear attempt to provoke Iran into shooting it down. Such an incident would have created an occasion for Trump to give the American people a special 4th of July fireworks.

On July 3 1988 the guided missile cruiser USS Vincennes shot down the civil Iranian Flight 655 with 290 people on board. The U.S. claimed that the plane's transponder was signaling an Iranian military identification code, that it was seemingly attacking the Vincennes, that the ship warned the plane 12 times, and that the ship was in international waters when the incident happened.

The crew of the Vincennes received medals for killing the Iranian civilians.

Investigations showed (pdf) that all the above claims were false. The shoot down was intentional. Iran sued the US in the International Court of Justice (ICJ) over it. The case was settled in 1996 when the U.S. agreed to apologize and to pay $61.8 million to the families of the victims.

On June 20 a large U.S. reconnaissance drone, accompanied by a manned U.S. military airplane, flew into Iranian air space east of the Strait of Hormuz. Iran shot the drone down. The U.S. threatened to strike Iran over the incident but Trump did not follow through.

There were reports that some people in the White House doubted that the U.S. Central Command, the U.S. military command for the Middle East, told it the full truth about the incident. Two days before the drone incident happened Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, the former CIA director, had unusual talks with the U.S. Central Command. This led to speculations that the incident was designed to provoke Iran into a shoot down and to push Trump into a war on Iran.

The case today is not in doubt. The U.S. military definitely tried to provoke Iran into shooting down another one of its planes.

Manu Gómez @GDarkconrad - 9:17 UTC - 3 Jul 2019

USAF Rivet Joint tracking over The #PersianGulf, spoof Hex Cod 730000 C/S IRI00061

The US Airforce RC-135V Rivet Joint are signal intelligence planes that snoop on other countries.


The plane flew over the islands Abu Musa and Sirri in the Persian Gulf which are Iranian territory and Iranian airspace. It falsely signaled that it was an Iranian plane.

The aviation transponder of the U.S. spy plane was set to a code that is associated with Iran. The International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) defined (pdf) 24-bit addresses that identify the type of the plane and the country where a plane is registered . The 24 bit codes for Iranian registered airplanes begins with the country identifier 0111 0011, written in hexadecimal as 73. The flight radar page that Manu Gomez used displays these 'S-Mode' transponder codes the airplane sends as a six digit hexadecimal number.

This use of code that identified the plane as Iranian was not a mistake but absolutely intentional:

Steffan Watkins @steffanwatkins - 11:53 utc - 3 Jul 2019
Steffan Watkins Retweeted Manu Gómez

There are so many things wrong with what the #USAF is doing here, that are very much not evident to the casual observer.

1) The RC-135 has changed its unique transponder number to 730000 (hex), an Iranian assigned code. So, the USAF is impersonating an Iranian plane.

2) As @GDarkconrad pointed out, this isn't an accident, the USAF did this with Venezuelan codes off the coast of #Venezuela too. US reconnaissance planes are impersonating the codes of the countries they are conducting reconnaissance on, endangering future civilian flights.

The track shows that the plane was coming from west north west, probably Kuwait, and flew directly over Sirri Island and Abu Musa. It then immediately turned around and flew again over both islands.

Detail of the tweeted screenshot

Sirri Island is the location of an oil platform that was destroyed by the U.S. Navy forces on April 18, 1988. The island has a landing strip and there are several oil and gas installations on it.

Abu Musa is a 12.8 square kilometer (4.9 sq mi) inhabited island near the entrance of the Strait of Hormuz. It is, like Sirri, Iranian territory and Iran has troops stationed there. They have decent air defense systems (vid) well capable of taking the Rivet Joint plane down. Abu Musa is the Iranian 'castle' that controls the Strait and most traffic west of it. Its strategic importance is immense.

After Iran shot down the U.S. drone its foreign minister posted maps showing the flight path of the drone and the demarcation of the Iranian airspace (red line). It is obvious that the U.S. plane today entered it.


This morning the U.S. spy plane willingly penetrated Iranian airspace. It squawked a fake code which showed ill intention. This happened on the 31st anniversary of Flight 655. The Iranian military would certainly still like to take revenge for that mass murder. It was a huge provocation likely intended to lure Iran into shooting it down.

Trump recently threatened to 'obliterate' some areas of Iran should it attack "anything American":

Donald J. Trump @realDonaldTrump - 2:42 utc - 25 Jun 2019

....Iran’s very ignorant and insulting statement, put out today, only shows that they do not understand reality. Any attack by Iran on anything American will be met with great and overwhelming force. In some areas, overwhelming will mean obliteration. No more John Kerry & Obama!

This led to speculation that Trump was threatening a nuclear strike.

Had Iran shot the plane down it would have been clearly within its rights. But imagine it had done so. A manned U.S. reconnaissance plane, not a drone, would have come down and the crew would be dead. U.S. media would scream for revenge.

It would have happened on the eve of Trump's 4th of July speech which will be followed by the military parade and overflight he ordered. 5,000 people from military families are invited to the event.

An ideal TV situation to announce that the U.S. Commander in Chief ordered to 'obliterate' Abu Musa island, the castle that controls the Strait of Hormuz, with maybe a small nuke. The U.S. public would have loved those 4th of July fireworks. Newspapers would headline "Commander In Chief Demonstrates His Resolve!" Trump's approval rating would soar to above 80%.

It would take days until the information that the flight was an intended provocation would enter the news. U.S. media would simply ignore it just as they ignored the evidence about Flight 655. The island would be unusable for Iran but the wider environmental damage from a small, kiloton range nuclear device would be minimal. No one in the U.S. would care about it.

One wonders who came up with such a nefarious plan. Was it Trump, the great showman, himself? Was that the reason why he ordered the military to join the 4th of July parade on such a short notice? Or was it John Bolton or 'we lie, we cheat, we steal' Mike Pompeo? Some minion at the CIA or CentCom?

Whoever came up with it, and those who signed off to allow this incident to happen, will now be disappointed. Iran clearly did not fall into their trap.

The world owns a big thank you to the Iranian air defense crews on Abu Musa for their disciplined behavior.

Posted by b on July 3, 2019 at 20:21 UTC | Permalink

next page »

Most of the post is very sensible; the part about a "small nuke" being dropped - not so much.
If there is one single thing that would galvanize the EU and Asia into action, it would be the use of nuclear weapons.

Posted by: c1ue | Jul 3 2019 20:27 utc | 1

@1 And you know that because?
All I see from the EU is lethargy and appeasement of US and Israeli interests. The appointment of Von der Leyen as new EU Commissioner is no coincidence in that regard. She is a lot more US friendly than Juncker ever was and to the limited extend she can influence EU foreign policy she will acquiesce to US demands and actions.

As for Asia I still need to see them ever actually defending or acting on anything the US does in the middle east. Of course dropping a nuke on Iran may be the trigger but I wouldn't hold my breath.

Posted by: Alexander P | Jul 3 2019 20:32 utc | 2

Did the Rivet Joint crew know the purpose of the mission beforehand?

Posted by: spudski | Jul 3 2019 20:39 utc | 3

I expect that would have been the subject (or one of them) of Pence's 'urgent meeting' yesterday.

Posted by: m | Jul 3 2019 20:42 utc | 4

If there was actually a live crew on that plane they were suicidal or too stupid to actually be in a plane without a keeper.

After Iranian Flight 655, they were probably lucky the US Navy did not accidentally shoot them down.

One must congradulate the IRGC for its restraint and good sense.

Whoever ordered this on the US side should be courtmartialed.

Posted by: jrkrideau | Jul 3 2019 20:47 utc | 5

A once proud nation led by dominionist degenerates. The neo-confederates around Chump will eventually get their war... with such linear cretinism I doubt we can beat the iranians, nuking them maybe. But even then, they won't submit.

Posted by: Sol Invictus | Jul 3 2019 20:55 utc | 6

Following roman triumph, the victorious general was repeatedly warned by a slave that he was not a god and that all glory is fleeting; Trump has NO victories and only yes-men who play him and don’t warn him !

Posted by: Sol Invictus | Jul 3 2019 21:09 utc | 7

Thank you b for your focus and economy of words in your reports. May your days be long and joyous.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Jul 3 2019 21:11 utc | 8

Yet more evidence that the Gangsters must be put out of business and their nation's defanged a la Germany & Japan post-WW2. Looks like the Banging the Wall discourse thread was provided some more grist to grind.

IMO, Gabbard must make immediate political hay out of this incident to take the greatest advantage of the Iranian's wrong-footing Trump.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jul 3 2019 21:12 utc | 9

If this was really the intent of the airspace violation and the Iranians continue to refuse to take the bait, then eventually they will shoot a plane down themselves and blame it on Iran.

However, despite Trump's tough talk, the use of nuclear weapons, even a "small" one, will mean the immediate end of the NPT. No country in the world will be without nukes once the US decides that their use is simply a matter of geostrategic convenience.

Mind you, presidents have threatened the use of nukes many times in the past, including the Kissenger-Nixon mad dog strategy in Vietnam. The Vietnamese didn't buy it.

It helps to remember that Harry Truman, who dropped 2 nukes on a defeated Japan, refused to use them in Korea where an entire American army was at risk. And that at a time when the IS was far closer to nuclear primacy than it is now.

Like the Vietnamese, the Iranians are likely also unimpressed and will not continue to allow continued violations of their airspace.

Posted by: Lysander | Jul 3 2019 21:16 utc | 10

I would think that any sort of attack against an Iranian island in the Persian Gulf would cause a substantive decrease in tanker traffic through the Straight of Hormuz, which in turn would have dire economic consequences for all parties. Thus the Americans are probably just bluffing, although they might just be crazy enough to do such a thing.

Posted by: farm ecologist | Jul 3 2019 21:19 utc | 11

On Tuesday June 24th. John Helmer blogged this report, with information provided by Russian air-defence expert Anatoly Gavrilov, as to Russia's help to Iran. Whether this is true or not cannot be confirmed by people smarter than me.


To me this Iranian composure smacks of Russian help. In Syria and elsewhere Russia shows great discipline in matters dealing with the dark empire. This is very good in my view.

Posted by: Taffyboy | Jul 3 2019 21:20 utc | 12

You gotta give the Iranians credit. They're inhumanly restrained and patient.

Posted by: Jonathan Gillispie | Jul 3 2019 21:21 utc | 13

The fear of MAD relies on your opponent believing you're sane. Using them on anyone removes all restraint,
because the madman will use them next on you,the only move is a full first strike before he turns on you.
This has been gamed to futility, a first strike always happens in those games,I've Red and Blue in them.

Posted by: Winston2 | Jul 3 2019 21:23 utc | 14

thanks b.. the folks in the controls of usa military and etc - are totally nuts!

jackrabbit suggested a possible provocation a few days ago, and indeed it appears he was correct.. both of us anticipate some type of false flag at some point... @ 10 lysander offers the perfect scenario.. as i say - this folks are completely bonkers..

and i agree with @2 alexander p - "All I see from the EU is lethargy and appeasement of US and Israeli interests." there is nothing short of a nuke that is going to change any of that either... a serious wake up call is coming...

Posted by: james | Jul 3 2019 21:32 utc | 15

Too much speculation on nuke subject, on the last post. Why a wise strategist in Iran to acquire WMD?
For a moment do not use western logic.
You have seen Hezbollah expelled Israel from Lebanon, on 2000, again defeated them on 2006, while whole west arsenals along with MSM big horn supported the exceptional nuke power in middle east . What is the use of nuke, then? Is it deterrent? Deterrent of what?
If Iran acquires nuke, can use it, against Israel? To kill Palestinians? How to differentiate Zionist from non-Zionist or Muslims there?
There are hundreds similar questions, why nobody bother to think about.
Mullahs have accomplished their historical mission well. The only skill they have since Ardashir ( the founder of Sasanid empire) time was not changed: mass mobilization. Governmental task was not theirs, for 40 years they are carrying this extra task, because there was a vacuum of statesman there, and vacuum existe yet. It is interesting to know that they have not changed their attire since Ardashir time. Even they have not changed the mobilization gathering point: masjid ( pre-islamic name was mazgat). There was a small change in their tool kit – the holy book.
The mass mobilization is the master key for every victory.
Look at battles from Stalingrad, Vietcongs, Khorramshahr, Lebanon, Hashado-l-shabi, so on.
The time of nuke is passed, it was used once, who ever dare to use it for second time, the masses of whole world will spell death to them, the user will never survive, while crippled victims will survive .
I bet in future the first user of 1945, shall pay compensation, too, maybe 100 years later from now.

Posted by: arata | Jul 3 2019 21:33 utc | 16

I'm not surprised by this development, as I suggested that something might be up a couple of days ago.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Jul 3 2019 21:36 utc | 17

These RC-135's, like I said the other day, man from anywhere between 25 and 35 people. The Iranians were hinting at this kind of plane when they nailed the drone, not some P8.

Btw., I disagree with "This led to speculation that Trump was threatening a nuclear strike. Had Iran shot the plane down it would have been clearly within its rights. "
Shot down while spoofing?? over Iran's territory?? And even if not, one plane down justifies a nuclear strike?

Posted by: bjd | Jul 3 2019 21:39 utc | 18

Abu Musa means "Father of Musa" (Musa being the arabic form of Moses).

Posted by: bilal | Jul 3 2019 21:42 utc | 19

This is where social media could be used against the Anglo-Zionist hegemon. Spread articles like these as far and wide as possible. Reminding the masses this is how the empire operates. Remind people of Operation Northwoods, USS Liberty, The USS Maine, the Lusitania, 9/11 and the countless other false provocations the empire used in the past and present to fool the masses into their warmongering. Counteract their propaganda with the truth.

Posted by: O | Jul 3 2019 21:43 utc | 20

Add to list ? "Israel ‘Building up Its Military Might” to Respond to Possible US-Iran ‘Military Conflagration’ " (sputnik)

Coordinated attack seems to have been wet squib...

Plan B?

That would be to liquidate the airplane with gadget and say the commies, er, I mean, the Iranians,,,did it. "Northwoods" Plan 2.0

They always double. There is no other choice for them...

Posted by: Walter | Jul 3 2019 21:51 utc | 21

"Had Iran shot the plane down it would have been clearly within its rights."
I think that you misunderstand.
'Its' refers to Iran not the USA: it would be in Iran's rights to shoot down a hostile plane in its airspace.
It would not be in the USA's rights to respond with an attack, least of all a nuclear attack.

Posted by: bevin | Jul 3 2019 21:52 utc | 22

@ #13 Winston2,

I think that's absolutely correct. And while it might not have been so thoroughly gamed out in 1950, it is probably what Truman was thinking at the time. And it is probably why no one takes the bluff to use nukes seriously.

Posted by: Lysander | Jul 3 2019 21:53 utc | 23

B is correct. The Pentagon has now adopted a plan to use nuclear weapons on the battle field under all sorts of circumstances. The plan was inadvertently published then taken down, but not before the Society of Concerned Scientists captured it and published it. This all happened last week so the timing is of particular interest.

Posted by: RenoDino | Jul 3 2019 22:00 utc | 24

Reminds me of a remark I read today on VT:

By Gordon Duff, Senior Editor - July 2, 2019

[...] Our sources tell us that Boris Johnson and Netanyahu are planning to down a British airliner over Cyprus and blame Syria. [...]

Israeli attack on Syria - Northern Cyprus - exploding flying object - syrian S-200 missile

Anyone remembering? :)

Posted by: take2 | Jul 3 2019 22:08 utc | 25

Two crews that one must wonder about the feelings of: the P8 crew a couple of weeks ago, and now the Rivet Joint crew.

Posted by: lysias | Jul 3 2019 22:11 utc | 26

arata @16--

Thanks for your comment! It allows me to understand what your contribution to our nuclear deterrence discourse might have included.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jul 3 2019 22:15 utc | 27

Social media boycott/blackout planned, tanks and APCs in DC, incident b wrote about today, other unusual military flights today, the Russian sub incident, and the abrupt Pence cancellation.

Coup d'etat in the US? Nuclear war?

Shit is definitely about to go down.

Posted by: Zack | Jul 3 2019 22:17 utc | 28

the folks in the US Political and Military Elites are frigging cuckoo

Iran has a lot of highly specialized and sophisticated equipment from the Russians that we know nothing about.
and I am assuming the russians themselves are watching this area of the world very closely indeed and have contacts throughout the Iranian military. We can also be pretty certain that the smart and savvy iranians knew what was going on with this set up and obviously decided not to take the poison bait

Posted by: michaelj72 | Jul 3 2019 22:19 utc | 29

May be the world needs WWIII with China , India and Russia on one side and the great Satan USA one other side , may be they will teach the Americans lesson to never forget .
I think about time the other super nations should stand against the US and Israel and enough bullying from these nation of evil wills .
I believe their time is coming .

Posted by: Bobby | Jul 3 2019 22:24 utc | 30

Agree with Lysander @10.

Its only a matter of time (maybe days) before the US downs its own plane, and blames Iran.

Posted by: cdvision | Jul 3 2019 22:25 utc | 31

Well.. I guess nobody is truly suprised.

Iran has cornerd Trump, and as B said himself days ago, he can only rejoin the nuclear deal, OR escalate into all out war.
But nobody could truly believe the Neocons in their deluded sense of supremacy could EVER choose an option where they loose face.
Of course a civilized nations as the US does never - i said never - start a war.
It always only reacts.
Gleiwitz style.

Like uncle Adolf said himself: The victor is never asked for proof.
And THIS fact of live, a narcistic egomanic sociopath like Trump has engraved in his soul and mind.

And nothing on this world is set in stone. Not even the non-use of nukes. All those who lived in the cold war know this, and everyone else who studied nuclear weapon doctrine.
From Japan to Korea, to Vietnam to Iran. There were always top level military and political personal in charge, who so badly screamed for nuking, that it is the biggest miracle of the 20th century that we only saw them used in Japan.
And this was by a US with unmatched power. Now in the 21th century, with the US on their downward spiral, such an escalation is all the more likely.
Tomorrow, or in 10, 20 or 30 years.
Nothing is impossible for the race of mankind. And sure no taboo is forever sacred.

Posted by: DontBelieveEitherPr. | Jul 3 2019 22:31 utc | 32

This is a great time to remind folks this is how the Israeli lobbyist openly advocate for false flag wars and no one calls them out on their outright lawlessness.
Patrick Clawson openly advocates for false provocations for war on Iran.

Posted by: O | Jul 3 2019 22:31 utc | 33

The crew of this plane must love the fact that the military wants to sacrifice their lives to ignite a war. Back in the 1990's, Madeline Albright asked a general if he could arrange for Iraq to shoot down a U-2 plane to justify an American attack. The general replied he could as soon as Albright learned to fly a U-2 plane. I guess the military is willing to do this now.

Posted by: Edward | Jul 3 2019 22:32 utc | 34

Quote from the document linked to by RenoDino | Jul 3 2019 22:00 utc | 24

“The [military commanders] can nominate potential targets to consider for nuclear options that would support [military commander’s] objectives in ongoing operations,” the document said.

This is in line with the great concern repeatedly expressed by Prof. Michel Chossudovsky of about the lowering of the threshold for using nukes, and the granting of field commanders the right to make the decision to use nukes. For example:

"Known in official Washington, as “Joint Publication 3-12”, the new nuclear doctrine (Doctrine for Joint Nuclear Operations , (DJNO) (March 2005)) calls for “integrating conventional and nuclear attacks” under a unified and “integrated” Command and Control (C2).

It largely describes war planning as a management decision-making process, where military and strategic objectives are to be achieved, through a mix of instruments, with little concern for the resulting loss of human life.

Military planning focuses on “the most efficient use of force” , -i.e. an optimal arrangement of different weapons systems to achieve stated military goals. In this context, nuclear and conventional weapons are considered to be “part of the tool box”, from which military commanders can pick and choose the instruments that they require in accordance with “evolving circumstances” in the war theater. (None of these weapons in the Pentagon’s “tool box”, including conventional bunker buster bombs, cluster bombs, mini-nukes, chemical and biological weapons are described as “weapons of mass destruction” when used by the United States of America and its coalition partners).

The proverbial monkey playing with the hand grenade in a crowded room is a very pleasant prospect by comparison.

Posted by: Robert Snefjella | Jul 3 2019 22:33 utc | 35

Sorry, should have been quotation marks to mark the end of the M.C. quote; before the monkey remark, which was my own.

Posted by: Robert Snefjella | Jul 3 2019 22:37 utc | 36

Two points I would make about this:
1) Iran shoots down an unmanned drone but leaves its accompanying P-8 Poseidon untouched, and now that the USAF dispenses with the drone altogether the Iranians leave the RC-135 untouched. Makes me wonder if security within the USA MIC has be compromised to the point where the Russians are giving Iran very, very good and very timely tactical advice.
2) The Navy crew on the P-8 and the USAF crew on the RC-135 must be mighty pissed off that their "leaders" are dangling them like bait on a hook. At least one crew member must be just aching to run into a real journalist in a bar somewhere....

Posted by: Yeah, Right | Jul 3 2019 22:46 utc | 37

I like many commenters above wondered if the crew of the plane knew they were going to fly into Iranian airspace? They went ahead with a suicide mission so Israel and Bolton could have their false flag? Did they volunteer for this? WTF

Posted by: Jason | Jul 3 2019 22:52 utc | 38

RenoDino @24--

Thanks for that link! Within it, Vice links to the archived pdf. Within the doc's chapter on Nuclear Operations, at its top is "Refer to JP 3-40, Countering Weapons of Mass Destruction, for additional information," its pdf can be found here. Other publications are also referenced, but these two are most important, IMO.

Interesting the Gangster moves so soon after G20 and DPRK visit. The variants of Operation Northwoods seem to be deemed successes so they get recycled.

Brent crude suffered shorting beginning July 1 from 66.50-62.25 before heavy buying today pushed it to 64 as it's clearly being gamed.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jul 3 2019 22:52 utc | 39

US could have shot down or detonated its own drone and blamed Iran. I’m back to thinking Iran is just being used as distraction from a deteriorating economy and justification for a presence in the region. But who knows. I doubt anything happens before fall now, if then. Too many vacations have been planned.

Posted by: Pft | Jul 3 2019 22:58 utc | 40

Posted by: Zack | Jul 3 2019 22:17 utc | 28

Agreed, to much activity, timing, etc..


Posted by: Lozion | Jul 3 2019 23:04 utc | 41

US Air Force air traffic over the Persian Gulf has picked up recently.
from military .com

"The B-52s were deployed to U.S. Central Command to defend U.S. forces and deter any aggression. They have begun flying deterrence missions in the region, including over the Arabian[sic] Gulf," AFCENT spokeswoman Maj. Holly Brauer said in an email. CNN reported that F-15C Eagles and F-35A Joint Strike Fighters that were already deployed to the Middle East for operations in Iraq, Syria and Afghanistan have joined the B-52s for "visible patrols" over the Persian Gulf. . .here

So this are "deterrence missions" using "visible patrols" over the Gulf. But their flight paths are legal, following "the black line."

Though both the Air Force and the Navy routinely conduct surveillance missions against Iran while passing up and down the Persian Gulf in international waters – a boundary route one Air Force report referred to simply as “the black line” . .here.

So the standard US operating procedure is to stay over international waters in the Persian Gulf, and this RC-135 flight was apparently a lone purposeful provocation at variance to what all those other US aircraft are doing in their "visible patrols.".

RC-135 Crew: (flight crew) five (augmented) - three pilots, two navigators; (mission flight crew) 21-27, depending on mission requirements, minimum consisting of three electronic warfare officers, 14 intelligence operators and four inflight/airborne maintenance technicians . .here

Posted by: Don Bacon | Jul 3 2019 23:12 utc | 42

FYI, since you have written about the Boeing 737MAX fiasco.

Posted by: AD | Jul 3 2019 23:31 utc | 43

Hmm... No news reports yet, which seems rather odd.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jul 3 2019 23:36 utc | 44

In conjunction with the supposed social media blackout proposed by the Wikipedia founder, now this:

Facebook, Instagram & WhatsApp down in parts of US and Europe

Posted by: O | Jul 3 2019 23:40 utc | 45

I agree with Karloft1 @44. Maybe this is a mistake on the part of Steffan Watkins and Manu Gómez? Not ill-intended, just a simple mistake?

It would seem to me that the Iranians would be screaming bloody murder by now if it really happened.

Posted by: Don Wills | Jul 3 2019 23:51 utc | 46

I have the impression that some commenters believe that the Russians are advising the Iranians on how to react to US probing of Iranian airspace to see how far Iranians can be goaded before hitting back. Do people not think the Iranians are capable of teaching themselves self-discipline and self-restraint?

The Iranians had to advise the Russians on restraining themselves enough in order to rescue two men who ejected from a Sukhoi25 fighter jet when it was shot down near the Syrian-Turkish border in November 2015. The pilot of the craft was shredded by jihadis while parachuting down and the second man managed to evade capture. The first Russian attempt to rescue him and recover the pilot's body ended badly with another man being killed during the rescue. The second rescue attempt was organised by the Iranians and that was successful in rescuing the survivor and retrieving the bodies of the dead men.

As for the RC-135V Rivet Joint plane encroaching on Iranian airspace, is there reason to believe that all or some of the crew on that plane were not already dead when the plane took off?

Posted by: Jen | Jul 4 2019 0:00 utc | 47

The United States fails to realize that if it attacks Iran, then Iran will attack Israel and also activate attacks inside the US mainland. Does ameriKa really want another 9/11 style 'incident' just because they want to provoke a war that will only benefit the Jewish State in both the short and long term? America really needs to think long and hard on this.

Posted by: Louis B | Jul 4 2019 0:04 utc | 48

The United States, consistent with much history elsewhere and through time, is the continual scene of factionalism, 'court intrigues', oligarchic machinations, etc. Presidents can be kept in the dark, lied to, manipulated, convinced to follow a course of action by foolish sophistry, and so on. In the extreme, in the case of JFK, and several other American instances, modern versions of regicide most foul have been attempted, or resorted to.

Consider the dispatching to Mongolia of the American national security 'guru', aka the "human tapeworm", who would in presidential estimation be at war with the world if he had his way, John Bolton. Simultaneous with the Mongolian 'exile?', he who diagnosed and identified the tapeworm problem, Tucker Carlson, was presidential partner in a love triangle with Kim of North Korea.

Tapeworms can be dangerous to the host, especially half-baked, vengeful, humiliated tapeworms, lusting for war, used to being feared.

Posted by: Robert Snefjella | Jul 4 2019 0:07 utc | 49

Nothing is going to happen. That is the new think-think tank-tank ethos. The US billionaire shadow force has gotten too greedy and cannot stop its addiction to funding its own mortality via outsourcing and offshoring and bringing in management consultants to smash whatever brilliance or autonomy its workers produced. So it has reached a dead end and is in a limbo. So nothing. No way out.

Posted by: Lochearn | Jul 4 2019 0:10 utc | 50

Don Wills @46--

I checked PressTV, Iran's official news outlet, but it has nothing about this. Do recall, however, that an earlier drone incursion wasn't revealed until the occasion of the drone shootdown; so, there's precedence for non-disclosure. BUT, crude market maneuvering was certainly done ahead of time in anticipation of something, meaning insiders tipped intentions once again to satisfy their greed and penchant for making money from death. As Caitlin Johnstone wrote today, making money from death is as American as Apple Pie and Military Parades.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jul 4 2019 0:23 utc | 51

Remembering recent incidents in the US military, running into things that are not moving etc., it seems plausible this is incompetence.

Having said that, it does look like all that nice-nice in Korea and Japan was a head-fake, yeah.

Iran doesn't seem to want to bring it up either, which I would agree with, once having got the rhetorical upper hand, no need to let your opponent set the agenda. Or maybe it is too soon.

I wonder if this will even get notice outside places like this?

Posted by: Bemildred | Jul 4 2019 0:35 utc | 52

I am used to being appalled and disgusted by the behavior of the USA, but this is mind-blowingly evil.
Jen @47, interesting idea. Perhaps the "crew" was made up of dead bodies dressed in US uniforms, and the plane flown remotely.
Remember when the Iranians hacked into, and brought down a US drone? Too bad they couldn't have brought this plane down and shown it to the part of the world that gets information besides the swill that the imperial media churns out.
The part of Facebook and Instagram that was down seemed very targeted at memes. Memes are the most effective way to reach a lot of people. A picture is worth a thousand words, but a picture AND a few well-chosen words which puncture holes in the propaganda, and make people think, is worth much more. Our rulers have been complaining loudly about memes and have threatened to abolish them. I'm guessing that the shutdown today is connected to those goals.

Posted by: wagelaborer | Jul 4 2019 0:37 utc | 53


“A manned U.S. reconnaissance plane, not a drone, would have come down and the crew would be dead. U.S. media would scream for revenge.”

And yet the Chinese managed to damage and force down a US spy plane, off the coast of China, without a war in the first half of 2001.

“The U.S. public would have loved those 4th of July fireworks. Newspapers would headline "Commander In Chief Demonstrates His Resolve!" Trump's approval rating would soar to above 80%.”

No, much of the US public would have detested this hypothetical action by Trump. (About 20% would have agreed with it.)

“The island would be unusable for Iran but the wider environmental damage from a small, kiloton range nuclear device would be minimal. No one in the U.S. would care about it.”

Again, wrong about the US public. Do you get your “data” regards the hopes, fears, and attitude of the US public from FoxNews or Team Hillary?

Posted by: Jay | Jul 4 2019 0:37 utc | 54

Bemildred @52--

Click the twitter for the initial discoverer and you'll find a rather paltry thread; same goes for b's Moon of Alabama twitter. IMO, what was detected was correct as nothing's been produced to prove otherwise. I wonder what was prepared by BigLie Media if the result differed. Were two different speeches prepared for Trump, etc? If a tree falls ….

Posted by: karlof1 | Jul 4 2019 0:42 utc | 55

karlof1 @55:

Nothing seems out of the question, but given the propensity of various parts/members of the US gov't to conduct their own foreign and military policies, it's hard to tell the details out here in TV-land. It just seems unlikely it was a mistake given the circumstances. I'm kinda wondering what will happen tomorrow, like some others here.

Posted by: Bemildred | Jul 4 2019 1:06 utc | 56

@44, 46 karlof1, Don Wills

Flightradar24 tells about IRI0061 / 730000 (HEX) doing what's shown on the graphics. It does not tell anything about that being spoofed, or that it is USAF Rivet Joint--it's Manu Gómez who does.

How did he figure it out? Is it more than saying, this looks weird--must be a US spy plane?

There are some reports on River Joint in the area, but exact location is not provided, and the time (11:00 UTC?) does not match

Posted by: Don Karlos | Jul 4 2019 1:18 utc | 57

Thanks karlof1 #9
IMO, Gabbard must make immediate political hay out of this incident to take the greatest advantage of the Iranian's wrong-footing Trump.

Good luck and much strength to your arm in assisting Tulsi and any other peacemaker that survives the 2020 presidential contest. Watch how the new Soros/Koch "peace studies" clown cart elevates Warren in place. It could even set up Warren and then back Trump at the last minute of course. It is the USA after all.

IMO Trump has to demonstrate strength and no war to fend off the peace advocate challenge and he will contort himself periodically to the edge of the abyss and pull back. We will grow weary of this but he will 'save' the USA with this pathetic belligerence/fraud.

May Tulsi turn this tide of ignorance.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Jul 4 2019 1:32 utc | 58

uncle tungsten @58--

Thanks for your reply! IMO, without any significant media blare, however--even from Iran--it will be difficult to use this as it might. Through some backchannel, Iran will inform the Outlaw US Empire that it knows what it attempted. Of course, those directly involved--plane crew, Iranian and US ground crews--will know what occurred, but those aren't usual news sources, Op-Sec and all that.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jul 4 2019 1:44 utc | 59

Interesting tidbit about Abu Musa as July 1:

"Speaking to the Tasnim News Agency, Ehsan Ghazizadeh Hashemi said according to a decision by the presiding board of the parliament, a number of MPs are slated to pay a visit to the Abu Musa island in southern Iran on the anniversary of the US move to shoot down an Iranian civilian airliner in 1988, which killed 290 people on board, including 66 children."

Posted by: O | Jul 4 2019 1:53 utc | 60

@AD 43

Nice article. That monopoly needs to be broken up. And so are many more in the corporate world. They are destroying US reputation as a manufacturer and when they run the companies to the ground, they have to bailed out because there is no one else since they bought all the competition. Same with the tech companies, banks and pharma.

Capitalism at its worst and near the end. Hope you have a parachute.

Posted by: Uncle Jon | Jul 4 2019 2:02 utc | 61

Here's an Iran commemorative stamp of the shoot-down of the commercial airliner 31 years ago.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Jul 4 2019 2:16 utc | 62

Re: Iranian Flight 655 with 290 people on board.

"Investigations showed (pdf) that all the above claims were false. The shoot down was intentional. Iran sued the US in the International Court of Justice (ICJ) over it. The case was settled in 1996 when the U.S. agreed to apologize and to pay $61.8 million to the families of the victims."

That's the same year that the US Navy shot down TWA Flight 800 and told a bunch of counter-intuitive porkies to conceal their carelessness. US Officialdom's explanation for the disaster was that vapour in the 747's main fuel tank exploded, due to an electrical spark from a wiring loom running through the tank, blasting the nose off the plane. That knee-jerk bunkum overlooks the fact that fuel vapour pressure in the tank EXPELS all the air from the tank.
Therefore no air = no explosion.

The 6-part BBC doco Black Box reported that the FBI/CIA hijacked the official investigation of TWA 800 and bypassed the usual air-crash investigation procedures, which tells us all we need to know about that cover-up.
The USG produced a video of its imaginary version of what happened to TWA 800, and how it climbed after exploding, but overlooked the fact that an aircraft minus its nose is no longer an aircraft and would have dropped out of the sky like a rock. The imaginary version was essential to explain away the fact that many eye-witnesses saw what looked like a rocket climbing toward the plane BEFORE the explosion. Those witnesses were hunted down and told they were wrong and that their testimony would not be required.

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Jul 4 2019 2:39 utc | 63

I know I failed with the link the first time I tried to post it, but did my comment on the low altitude at which the U.S. drone was shot down by Iran have to be deleted?

Posted by: David G | Jul 4 2019 2:45 utc | 64

For a decade and a half there have been at least three times before now that a war with Iran was at hand. I always dismissed these reports if for no other reason that I knew that the US military was not only not interested in conquering Iran but didn't feel they could. Things are a little different today. I think, for the first time, this war is possible now. Why? Because both political parties, despite the Democrats hatred for Trump, will unite on a war with Iran. The American people, as they always do, will rally around the flag because most Americans love war much more than they love peace. War simplifies everything--that is why all levels of the population were almost ecstatic after 911--suddenly it was "us" against "them" and the world became cleared of ambiguity. There are a few of us, a very small minority, that will be and are skeptical of the Imperial project but most Americans love it when it is not ambiguous. And today they have a President who will be happy to use nuclear weapons to commit genocide and the media is controlled enough so that most people won't even know the uglier side and we are poised for massive censorship of the internet and social media. I still think the odds are against war but I can see today a scenario where all sections of the power elite might agree. This way, there will be no need to reform health-care, work on climate change, worry about children in concentration camps or all the rest of it.

Posted by: Chris Cosmos | Jul 4 2019 2:52 utc | 65

Thanks again arata for your perspective. B I think the extension to bombing Abu Musa is way too far, there are UAE citizens who reside there if I remember, to start off with. Exchange would be conventional and military targets, under large escalation who knows though.

Without knowing more about the flight than presented here, and without taking any particular position:

Abu Musa is disputed, as is Tumbs, their territorial waters and airspace do no exist legitimately / are disputed. Sirri was recognised as Iranian by UAE, though I don't remember if it was a formal accord or MOU. Either way, within that agreement was the status of Abu Musa and Tumbs, which Iran is said to not have respected. So feasibly the whole overflight could be claimed as within disputed airspace, because recognition of Sirri might be understood to have been revoked by non commitment by Iran.

I am just saying how it looks at a certain level.

The sending of a US jet under false transponder through Sirri airspace Iran considers its own, well that is asking for trouble if it were so.

Posted by: gzon | Jul 4 2019 2:54 utc | 66

Big claims need big evidence.

This sounds improbable.

Was this spy plane - spoofed or not - over Iranian territorial waters, or was it over waters over which it has 'air control', as agreed by International bodies?

It is not clear to me.

According to Wikipedia:

"By international law, a states's “has complete and exclusive sovereignty over the airspace above its territory”, which corresponds with the maritime definition of territorial waters as being 12 nautical miles (22.2 km) out from a nation's coastline.[4]

Airspace not within any country's territorial limit is considered international, analogous to the "high seas" in maritime law.

However, a country may, by international agreement, assume responsibility for controlling parts of international airspace, such as those over the oceans.

Such airspace in respect of which a country is responsible under the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) for operational control is called a Flight Information Region (FIR). For a coastal state, the FIR consists of the airspace above its land and sea territory plus any international airspace in respect of which ICAO has assigned responsibility to that state"

It is clear from the drone incident that Iran is fully aware of the origin - down to the airbase - of the aircraft that enter the Gulf region.

Which means they knew this was an American craft.

Which means any 'spoofing' was unecessary.

Yet the aircraft, it seems, did it.

And IF this was Iranian airtraffic controlled area - not airspace - flying through it without reference to the 'controllers' is reprehensible, but that's all.

Iran would be well aware of what is really going on - simply a mark of disrespect on the anniversary of the USA killing Iranian civilians by shooting down a civilian plane those years ago.

One explanation is a childish part of the fundamentally flawed illegal 'maximum pressure' actions by USA; the other an extremely dangerous provocation threatening to plunge the region into horrific conflict and to shove the world precipitately into depression.

So which is it?

Posted by: powerandpeople | Jul 4 2019 2:58 utc | 67

This story about The Swamp deliberately sending a manned US surveillance aircraft to violate Iranian airspace, in order to 'discover' if Iran would shoot it down, is hard to swallow - until one recalls The Swamp's attitude toward the USS Liberty and its hapless crew.

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Jul 4 2019 3:02 utc | 68

Newspapers would headline "Commander In Chief Demonstrates His Resolve!" Trump's approval rating would soar to above 80%.

Yeah right.

Society is split down the middle, there will be no Putin-like poll numbers for DJT under any circumstance, although cancelling student debt would guarantee his re-election.

However, sanity is not an option and by now everyone almost understands they are observing unreality as expressed by an assortment of psyops conducted by apparently competing actors, even the people who focus inordinately on WAPO or the NYT.

Which begs the question why focus on surface bullshit unless it is your job is to reinforce mass confusion?

B you get high marks for how you operate this blog and what I perceive is your commitment to letting your readers express themselves, unlike so many others but this does not mean anyone should doubt the MSM versus Alt media is a well managed fraudulent dialectic, in an extensive campaign of psychological warfare against us all. This is the ground upon which we stand and you do not serve us by ignoring how the battlespace of mind is constructed, or especially echoing one or another theory or false narrative. Broad conclusions such as the US military wants to start a war with Iran are unsustainable, and are impossible to prove, as was your assertion Iran was responsible for attacking tankers in the gulf.

Far more likely the US military is looking to justify increased spending since they are obviously unprepared for a war with Iran.

Ultimately we are under attack by all factions of the globo elite, who may be fighting amongst themselves but in point of fact mean to take the spoils of their victories from all of us, whether economic, or psyco-spritual. Self defense requires we know the lay of the land and not get pulled by our noses this way and that.

Posted by: C I eh? | Jul 4 2019 3:08 utc | 69

Ali Khamanei understandably lost it a bit, recounting some history and making an excellent point: If it was a mistake, why the medal?. . .
Why did the US give a legion of merit to the captain who shot down the Iranian passenger airliner?

A U.S. naval fleet in the Persian Gulf shot down an Iranian passenger airliner with about 300 people on board. They said it was by mistake. To hell with you for making such a grave mistake! If the commander of the fleet made a mistake, why did you give him a legion of merit?!
July 4, 1991

From the initial hours of the Revolution, this enemy revealed its presence and expressed opposition [towards the IRI]: this enemy was the government of the United States of America. From the very beginning – of course, I mean after recovering from their initial confusion, following days when they had no clue as to what was going on – they began to oppose us and show their hostility. To this day, while we speak, the Americans [from the USA] have employed numerous plots, methods, and means of deception aimed at striking the Islamic Republic. Indeed, there is no hostile method that they haven't tried against the Islamic Republic!

They organized military coups; they provoked ethnic groups to turn against one another; they provoked Saddam into attacking and fighting against Iran. During the war [8-year Holy Defense War], they supported Saddam in various ways, and they imposed sanctions on us. The US government powers used their influence against Iran within the UN: they launched propaganda campaigns, day and night, and they used their knack for mischevious planning to further their goals [against Iran]. They used their Hollywood industry to make anti-Iranian films – and not just one or two. The USA launched military moves in various strategic regions: they shot down our passenger plane and attacked some of our centres in the Persian Gulf. The USA government has manoeuvred all sorts of schemes against the Islamic Republic: they have mounted security, political, economic, propaganda, cultural and various kinds of oppositional operations.

And the purpose of all their [USA's] manoeuvring was to overthrow the Iranian government. If today, this idea [to overthrow] is being echoed in the statements of American officials, this is not a new concept: this was their goal since day one [of the revolution]. Their previous president [Barak Obama] who kept announcing that their goal is not to plot a coup, he even pursued a goal to overthrow [Iran's governing body]; of course, his motives were completely transparent. .May 23, 2018 . .here

Posted by: Don Bacon | Jul 4 2019 3:09 utc | 70

I can imagine that these types of flights have been going on for decades in the region. As Bill Gates would famously say, "its just another day in the Persian Gulf." The Lobby has been emboldened with their new leader at the helm of the US. This may be different. It certainly feels different.

I do not see the flag waving morons as ready for war yet. It will take a few big incidents to prime the pump. I do not think the era of small provocations is over yet unless the Lobby feels that their Dear Leader in the US has a slim to no chance of winning in 2020. They still have to write the Book Of Trump and add it to the Bible and that takes time.

I am still of the opinion that this is a standoff with nuclear war inevitable as they know the Iran can attempt to nuke Tel Aviv as I am of the opinion that they already have nukes and know how to use them. The insiders fear that outcome. They can send a bunch of missiles in from their allies in Lebanon and overwhelm the iron dome and try to launch the big one if attacked.

Israel hates to spill the blood of their sons and daughters. The US is in no position to launch large operations against Iran today. They can only hit them on a small scale unless they use the nuke option. Trump cannot move the mass of forces needed until after 2020 because his base will not stand for another war unless the 911 style event happens.

The crazies are in control, anything is possible.

Posted by: dltravers | Jul 4 2019 3:36 utc | 71

Here's an excellent treatise on the limitations of air power, by an expert. . .a sample--

. . .The problem with these theories is that the Air Force has tried them before, and their effectiveness remains in dispute. While the idea of bombing a country “back to the Stone Age” is a great bumper sticker, it’s a lousy conventional strategy — because it cannot be done conventionally. The Air Force can level a mid-sized city, of course, but it can no longer deliver the weight of ordnance that the massed air forces of World War II could deliver. . .

Posted by: Don Bacon | Jul 4 2019 3:47 utc | 72

Cold war Déjà vu, all over again. Gotta get right on with cleaning up the bomb shelter, or maybe NOT.

Go to bed dang it you kids!

Posted by: TEOTWAWKI | Jul 4 2019 3:54 utc | 73

@ 67

Third possibility is that Sirri (and its airspace) is considered sovereign of Iran as part of an accord which Iran has not kept, according to the other parties. The corresponding treaty would be lodged at the UN. The full resolution of that treaty has been at impasse for a long time (as have others around the world) , this usually occurs because of either confusion in the obligations of the treaty or use of veto, the final means of resolution being the approval of use of force if nescessary. It rarely reaches near that point at the UN, especially when a circumstance seems settled enough that force would be disproportianate. Even the hint of giving right to a disputed territory is drawn out to maximum because it is known as usable for pretext for war.

So certain countries get frustrated, others delay, some shun/circumvent the UN (US is good example of that sometimes), and they make statements, like crossing a border without permission, to show that the agreement and border are no longer valid, to see what happens...

So here, if this did occur, the US could be saying to Iran that its ownership of Sirri and other islands is no longer recognised, it could be taunting it at the same time, reminding it what it has to lose.

This is real world power play, a step short of actually using force on another, looking to see if the other will draw.

In other words I hope that the above event did not happen, or if it did that it was pre-approved somehow between the various sides (and even that would be dangerous because any side could then take advantage of that as it unfolded). Obviously if you wanted to start a war, that would be one way of going about it. There is no childish part, the message would be to rile the opponent, or humiliate him.

Posted by: gzon | Jul 4 2019 4:05 utc | 74

Iran did get revenge for the plane the US Vincennes shot down while it was illegally INSIDE Iranian waters. The jet that went down over Lockerbie did so with a bomb concealed in a radio made by a Palestinian bomb maker and placed aboard by the Iranians in London. London where the luggage storage area was obviously broken into but never made the news. The only evidence they had was a piece of a timer wrapped in a piece of shirt found well away from the debris field. It was claimed Libya had access to this type of common timer and the shirt was supposedly purchased in Malta by the Libyan defense official who was convicted of the crime who was identified by the Maltese shopkeeper as the buyer. According to some the shopkeeper was shown a photo array days before the trial and he failed to recognize the guy. Many in attendance at the 2 judge, no jury trial, trial couldn't believe anyone could be convicted on such flimsy evidence. Many claim Libya admitted to the crime but not really. To get the case buried and for Libya to get relief from US sanctions Libya "took responsibility for the actions of it's officials" and agreed to pay reparations to the victims families. Former CIA agent Robert Baer and a high ranking Iranian intelligence official who defected both claimed it was the Iranians who did it and the CIA knew it. Supposedly they had their kangaroo court as they needed Syria's help with something and if they went after the Iranians they wouldn't get it. Some of the families of the victims refused the reparations as it was obvious to them they got he wrong guy. Some reached out and became friends with the Libyan "bomber."

The "bomber" was released years later, 2008 or so, on the grounds he was dying from prostate cancer which he was. When he didn't die right away, it was years later, the conspiracy freaks had a field day claiming BP had him released so they could get some big oil contracts from Libya. Prostate cancer is very unpredictable, for some you can have it for years and never die from it, so it's not unusual for the guy to last years instead of months. There are those that claim the "bomber" petitioned for a new trial and rather than have the coverup exposed they let the guy walk. With the American mentality, then and now as it hasn't really changed, if it was confirmed Iran did it Americans would be screaming to obliterate Iran even though it was a tit for tat.

Posted by: snedly arkus | Jul 4 2019 4:24 utc | 75

Thank you gzon @74,

Yes, it seems that the dispute over these islands has not been resolved by any 3rd party (i.e. UN) decisions. And, yes, bilateral discussions failed.

So the status of the Islands under INternational law remain sosmewhat murky, but there is enough circumstance around the 'takeover' of the islands, and UK's role, to presume possession is permanent in Iran's favor.

Interesting .pdf on Iran's actions in response to the Iraq conflict, and how it attacked merchant ships not part of the blockade against Iraq - these were, however, Saudi et al who were actively supporting Iraq.

Gives a template for what may happen in future if USA does not find a face-saving way out.

I am sure, as time comes closer to the USA elections, that a way will be found.

I am fairly sure that once back in power, the Trump Presidency will continue to harrass Iran. A very foolish policy because it is ineffective and corrosive.

The irony is that allowing Iran to blossom would in the long run likely see a change in Iranian politics and a move in the direction that better suits US interests.

But, of course, as Pres. Putin pointed out, all US geopolitics is centred around the 4 year US electoral cycle.

Very short sighted.

Posted by: powerandpeople | Jul 4 2019 4:44 utc | 76

Can we be 100% certain that that the RC-135V Rivet Joint in question had a crew on board during this incident? My understanding is that Airbus passenger aircraft, have been capable of completing a routine flight autonomously, from take-off to landing, for two decades or more. And we know that pilotless drones can can complete a mission autonomously.

In a fly-by-wire aircraft, the electronic gear required to make it autonomous would probably take up no more space than a briefcase. Had Iran shot down the Rivet Joint, the Yanks could have deployed umpteen porkies to 'prove' that X AmeriKKKans had been "lost". Then Congress Critters could convert "lost" to "killed" with a straight face and appropriate bathos and crocodile tears...

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Jul 4 2019 4:47 utc | 77

Further to my 76:

The International Court of Justice paper linked above has some sobering data on what we might expect in a full blown conflict in the Persian Gulf. Remember, warfare technology has moved on greatly since 1988:

"Iran attacked almost 200 merchant ships between May 1984 and August 1988, about half of the ships attacked by both sides during the war. Between 1984 and 1988, more than 320 persons were reported killed, wounded or missing as a result of attacks by both sides."

According to one authority, the total tonnage of ships sunk or so badly damaged as to be written off as constructively lost, as a result of attacks by both sides in the "Tanker War" totalled more than half the 24 million tons of allied merchant shipping sunk during al1 of World War II."

Posted by: powerandpeople | Jul 4 2019 4:56 utc | 78

I not quite ready to buy into this scenario.....yet. A lot of the data provided requires independent verification and further substantiation. I will say it is interesting to note that the only publicly acknowledged US plane in the air at the time of drone shoot down was a US Navy P8A. The P8A consist of a crew of 10 or so - mission dependent it could vary slightly less. Variants of the RC-135 have a capacity of 21–27 possibly a few more or less - again mission dependent. The Iranian's said they had a US plane in their with approximately 35 souls on board. Possibly, the Iranians were talking about the [ alleged ] RC-135 that was - [ allegedly ] in the area.? Need more time.

Posted by: rickf | Jul 4 2019 5:03 utc | 79

@ snedly arkus #75

Interesting to hear this for the first time and in the context of whether we should go to war with Iran.

The int'l terrorist/intel complex is a relatively small group of people. All are employed, directly or indirectly, by Western Intel agencies. Full stop.

This is why Libya murdered Musa al-Sadr on behalf of future Iranian Ayatolah Khomeini aproximately 1 year before he seized power in 1979 in yet another CIA coup. The purpose of that coup was to install a regime which would foster a civilizational war between Sunni and Shia, something Iranian leadership has been working hard to do on behalf of their paymasters in the West.

The best example is how Iran 'helped' Syria during the opening stages of the war to destroy that country. Iran demanded that Syria reorganize its military not along modern lines but as Shia militia. With roughly 80% of the Syrian population being Sunni this was obviously a calculation made to assist in the destruction of that multi religious, multi ethnic society. It was only after the Russian intervention that the Syrian army managed to restore itsels secular proffesional military force.

Lockerbie was an operation of Western intel, primarily MI6, as are all terrorist attacks which get reported in Zionist media.

Iran is a satrap of Rothschild controlled intel agencies, as it has been perhaps since the 19th century.

Posted by: C I eh? | Jul 4 2019 5:03 utc | 80

Iran Not an Enemy of the Jewish Power Elite

A lot of players in the alternative media believe that Iran is a legitimate enemy of the City of London Jewish Power elite. We have all seen the memes which purport that Iran is one of the only countries without a Rothschild controlled central bank. This is nonsense because the Rothschilds are all over Iran with the hundreds of Rothschild Controlled Swiss banks in Iran. They also have a hand in the enormous Middle Eastern drug trade that is being run by the Iranian Revolutionary Guard and the CIA/Mossad in Afghanistan. People don't realize that the Shah cut down on the Middle Eastern drug trade. It blossomed once the Shah was overthrown in the Iranian Revolution. The same drug traficking, money laundering Rothschild Banking Syndicate that rules the west rules Iran. To understand the modern day Islamic Republic of Iran, we need to go back in time.

Posted by: C I eh? | Jul 4 2019 5:26 utc | 81

Concerning Moussa Al-Sadr, and with caution because the source looks like an MEK mouthpiece, which is in any case is irrelevant because Iran and the MEK are frenemies working on their own bullshit dialectic struggle, for the benefit of Persians who believe everything they read (who are almost none, btw).

Did Khomeini Kidnap Moussa Al-Sadr?

Posted by: C I eh? | Jul 4 2019 5:33 utc | 82

More -- let's call it circumstantial, evidence Iranian leadership works for Ziocon Global Incorporated:

RE: Mullah Rafsanjani and his family’s foreign investment in Canada

Posted by: C I eh? | Jul 4 2019 5:42 utc | 83

Thank you C I eh? #69. may I hazard a suggestion that global control is their only desire. 'They'? the oligarchy, deep state, CIA etc. Michael Hudson nailed it in a reflection on his life journey: a one hour well invested.

At one point in his monologue Michael references being contracted by the CIA to analyze global criminal cartel banking and how the CIA might take control of same. I am sure the CIA would never voluntarily relinquish control of such a lever EVER. Control! and if not, then punishment for those who dare to refuse entry to the beast. This is why 'they' are desperate to frustrate OBOR, punish Iran, China, Russia, Venezuela, Libya, Syria, Vietnam, Cuba etc etc.

This is who a peaceful world is up against and we may hope yet again on the good sense of the citizens of the USA to bring their Minotaur to heel.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Jul 4 2019 5:46 utc | 84

I'm trying to think as I would if I were an Iranian leader. Would I wait for the Great Falling Empire to find some reason to just suddenly sucker-punch me. No, I would not. I would, firstly, disperse my population and assets. And not wait for 'them' to come for me.

In other words, I would strike first.

At some level of certainty of an immanent attack, I would very suddenly, and utterly, destroy the Arab kingdom's oil extraction and transportation systems. And of course eliminate all transportation in the Persian Gulf. And probably smash Israel for good measure.

What really could anyone do about it? They can drop some bombs here and there, but that would merely be the final charge of a great dying beast. The entire economy of the Falling Empire would be 100% dead. Are they going to send 500,000 troops over? Nope, with today's technology, all of those troops would quickly find themselves swimming in the Atlantic Ocean.

So perhaps we best not actually convince them we are about to attack?

Posted by: blues | Jul 4 2019 5:47 utc | 85

Spy planes not only change transponder numbers but can also modify location broadcasts do whatever is needed. It's unlikely the crew would be knowingly fly on a suicide mission and they must have known their own course and intention. Crews normally do.

In other words, factually some data might be correct in the article, adding it together like that does not make much sense, including the idea of a nuclear attack near the most important shipping lane. Then again, common sense is something that might not be present either in the White House, not when war fever hits!

Posted by: John Dowser | Jul 4 2019 6:12 utc | 86

Has Trump been seen publicly since Pence cancelled his trip?

Nothing on his public schedule until 6:15PM today.

Posted by: Zack | Jul 4 2019 6:19 utc | 87

@27 karlof1, thanks.
Iran’s motto is : “nuclear energy for everyone, nuclear weapon for no-one”. Mullahs are determined to de-nuclearize world nuke possessors , including five permanents of UNSC. It looks like a dream.
At present time every one are deaf, nobody here their voice, nobody read their message, nobody take them seriously, when a historical crisis arises the world will here their voice.
If Trumps dare to “ come back to bite, like nobody has been bitten before”, i.e. worse than Hiroshima, it will be a voucher at the hand of mullah to mobilize the world to de-nuclearize him. It is not difficult to predict that time America will surrender, but Russia will resist. China is form a different ingot, culturally, strategically, militarily, economically, they do not have problem to give up nuke if the rest of the world agree to de-nuke.

Posted by: arata | Jul 4 2019 6:24 utc | 88

@Jay and others who doubt that Trump would get 80+% approval for bombing Iran should look at this graphic. GW Bush got 90% after 9/11 and 70+% after invading Iraq. It is the 'rally around the flag' effect that works every f***ing time.

Posted by: b | Jul 4 2019 6:37 utc | 89

@ uncle tungsten

Thank you. I just heard Hudson say he's Trotsky's God son, lol. I need to go back and re listen. From Lukacs to Huckleberry Finn and University of Chicago, it's all there in his bio.

I could easily dive into this rabbit hole but I won't. I have always thought Hudson is sincere but a mistaken globalist, with plenty of great ideas that will inevitably be misappropriated and misused.

Posted by: C I eh? | Jul 4 2019 7:01 utc | 90

=> b | Jul 4 2019 6:37 utc | 89

Bush got approval of '70+% after invading Iraq'? I really don't think it's real, since I am way too cynical to place any trust in Gallup polls.

Actually I now understand that general public approval is a totally irrelevant concept, because USSA 'democracy' is 100% fake and the people are utterly powerless (so I harp on simple score voting). Any degree of 'approval' serves only one simple function: It convinces naive young men and perhaps their parents that they are obliged to join the military to be militarily exploited.

Only things are very different these days. If they attempt to travel to Iran to fight for fake 'freedom', new technology will ensure that they will quickly find themselves swimming in the ocean.

Posted by: blues | Jul 4 2019 7:24 utc | 91

@Jay and others who doubt that Trump would get 80+% approval for bombing Iran.. the 'rally around the flag' effect that works every f***ing time.

Indeed it does work every time but only with a vanishing minority who are then able to then impose their will on a zombified and terrified mass via media because they just don't give a shit since they are preoccupied with maintaing relative normailty. They do not represent 80% of the People, least of all American serfs, no matter which fake pollster creates which fake reality with whatever fake questions and fake numbers they pull from their collective asses.

My general question is how do we undermine the effectiveness of their propaganda. Should we not attack the pillars on which these falsified narratives are errected? Or should we drive ourselves to frenzy and distraction complaining about the plotlines of their passion plays and circuses?

The net result of taking the latter course is to fall into their trap.

Posted by: C I eh? | Jul 4 2019 7:32 utc | 92

Thank you C I eh? #90, that video is about twelve months old and was made in China where he had been delivering a lecture circuit on methods of enabling central planned economies from being sucked into the global black hole of banksterism.

I take the view that the sole driver behind western hatred of China, Russia, Iran etc is because they prohibit or strictly limit bankster funding of industry or infrastructure. I especially noted that Xi made a small concession to Trump at the G20 to allow some minor bankster investment opportunity in Chinese industry. Time will tell if that is sufficient for the Minotaur.

I must admit Hudson's life trajectory is astounding and I too resist diving that rabbit hole but I am going to read as many of his papers that I can. First though Marx Capital Vol 2 and 3 as Hudson insists they be fully understood to grasp economic alternatives. I haven't read Marx since my revolutionary youth days so I am looking forward to it.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Jul 4 2019 7:51 utc | 93

Thank you powerandpeople #78
According to one authority, the total tonnage of ships sunk or so badly damaged as to be written off as constructively lost, as a result of attacks by both sides in the "Tanker War" totalled more than half the 24 million tons of allied merchant shipping sunk during al1 of World War II."

I believe I posted this link to a past thread but do read it.

The technology embedded in this missile is multiple factors more effective than the renowned exocet that neutered the Stark in 1987. Iran has not been seen in action since its resistance against the Iraq attack and invasion by Husein that was ably assisted by the B team of UKUSA maniacs. Plus the B team is about to be boosted by Boris the berserk.

The real danger for the west attacking Iran is that the B team are fully aware of their excellence in missile technology, their arsenal of mighty proven lethality including hundred + Sunburn missiles.

And then there is what the B team don't know. Two decades of improvement on the Sunburn device and its successors.

If the B team are entirely stupid the volume of maritime destruction will be vast, equally there is every likelihood that the 30 minute lifespan for Israel could be a serious proposition. Iran may very well take retaliatory action immediately and in parallel across the region resulting in mass deaths and massive disruption to oil production. Certainly the B team has made such berserk threats that Iran likely believes now that it has little option.

The danger in this level of brinkmanship by the west is that any of its allies could now trigger the response on its own and then the lunacy will unleash.

No ally of Iran could stay their hand if any one of the B team attacks in my estimation. Where is the UN Secretary General? Where is the peacemaking call from other nations? Spineless traitors of humanity.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Jul 4 2019 8:20 utc | 94

It would have happened on the eve of Trump's 4th of July speech which will be followed by the military parade and overflight he ordered. 5,000 people from military families are invited to the event.

Heather Caygle:

A source passed along these photos of flatbed preparing to move Trumps July 4th tanks after it was determined they couldn’t clear the overpass:

Posted by: curious man | Jul 4 2019 8:56 utc | 95

Great thanks for the laugh curious man #95 at that last image. A tequila is in order.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Jul 4 2019 9:06 utc | 96

@93 Uncle Tungsten

It is interesting to read Marx captital of 19 century to understand today issues!

If you have more time, it is not bad idea to read Martin Jacques.
Watch him :
Martin Jaques speech
and here

Posted by: arata | Jul 4 2019 10:20 utc | 97

The case was settled in 1996 when the U.S. agreed to apologize and to pay $61.8 million to the families of the victims.
Nah, being American means you never ever apologize, particularly if you're the president or vice president. As George H.W. Bush said of another fuck-up:
I will never apologize for the United States — I don't care what the facts are... I'm not an apologize-for-America kind of guy.
No doubt many Americans think G H W Bush was a far better president than Trump but he was just as bad. Wikipedia correctly reports what happened:
In 1996, the governments of the United States and Iran reached a settlement at the International Court of Justice which included the statement "...the United States recognized the aerial incident of 3 July 1988 as a terrible human tragedy and expressed deep regret over the loss of lives caused by the incident..." As part of the settlement, even though the U.S. government did not admit legal liability or formally apologize to Iran, it still agreed to pay US$61.8 million on an ex gratia basis, amounting to $213,103.45 per passenger, in compensation to the families of the Iranian victims.

Posted by: Ghost Ship | Jul 4 2019 10:22 utc | 98

>>>>>: curious man | Jul 4 2019 8:56 utc | 95

The DoW is worried that either the tanks will break down on the way to the parade showing what garbage they are or the tracks will rip up the road surface showing how dilapidated American infrastructure is. Either way to DoW needs to ensure that USG discretionary spending all goes to the MIC.

Posted by: Ghost Ship | Jul 4 2019 11:16 utc | 99

Speaking of Hudson, this one is interesting.

The Delphic Oracle Was Their Davos

Posted by: C I eh? | Jul 4 2019 11:49 utc | 100

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