Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
August 23, 2019

U.S. Says Israel Bombed Iraq - With Update

Updated below:

On July 30 we wrote No, Israel Did Not Attack Iranian Targets In Iraq. We MAY have been wrong with this:

Israeli newspaper repeat a report which claims that Israeli planes hit Iranian targets in Iraq.

From the last one:

The IAF used its F-35i stealth fighter jets to hit two Iraqi bases that were used by Iranian forces and proxies and for storing ballistic missiles, the London-based Saudi daily Asharq Al-Awsat reported on Tuesday.

Asharq Al-Awsat is owned by Faisal bin Salman, a member of the Saudi ruling clan. It is - like other Arab papers - often used to launder Israeli disinformation and propaganda that is then repeated in the Israeli press.

At that time there had been two alleged incidents in Iraq. An ammunition dump exploded on July 19. An official investigation blamed the incident on faulty equipment. There had been rumors about a second incident that had not happened at all.

There have since been more ammunition incidents at bases of the Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF or Hashed):

Maya Gebeily @GebeilyM - 19:24 UTC · Aug 21, 2019

#IRAQ: At least four incidents over the last month at Hashed bases:
July 19 - Amerli; Iraqi joint ops says it was a drone, Hashed said fire; Pentagon denied involvement
July 28 - Diyala
August 12 - Saqr; PM ordered probe into massive blasts
August 20 - near al-Balad


After the last incident the leaders of the PMF released contradicting statements:

The head of Iraq’s paramilitary forces supported by Iran on Thursday walked back a statement by his deputy the day before in which he blamed Israeli drones and held the U.S. responsible for a series of attacks on bases run by the militias.

Faleh al-Fayyadh said the statement by his deputy, Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, did not represent the view of the mainly Shiite militias known as Popular Mobilization Forces — or the view of the Iraqi government. Al-Fayyadh’s statement alleged the attacks on the bases over the past weeks “were the result of an act organized by a foreign side,” but refrained from naming that side.

American officials denied the U.S. had any role in the explosions.
A government investigation, a copy of which was obtained by The Associated Press on Wednesday, found the blast near Baghdad was caused by a drone strike.

Al-Muhandis, the deputy leader of the PMF who actually runs the shop, threatened U.S. forces in Iraq with retaliation.

It is likely that his statement caused U.S. officials to now tell the New York Times that the alleged Israeli airstrikes indeed happened:

Israel has carried out an airstrike on a weapons depot in Iraq that officials said was being used by Iran to move weapons to Syria, an attack that could destabilize Iraq and thrust it deeper into the conflict between the United States and Iran.
A senior Middle Eastern intelligence official said that Israel had bombed a base north of Baghdad on July 19.

Two senior American officials, however, said that Israel had carried out several strikes in recent days on munitions storehouses for Iranian-backed groups in Iraq.
The Israeli attack on July 19 struck a base that the Middle Eastern intelligence official said was being used by the Iranian Revolutionary Guards to transfer weapons to Syria. The Israeli strike, which was launched from within Iraq, the official said, destroyed a cargo of guided missiles with a range of 125 miles.

The "Middle Eastern intelligence official" is obviously an Israeli source that may or, more likely, may not tell the truth.  Israel can only launch strikes from within Iraq if it has resources on a U.S. base or in the Kurdish controlled area. Al-Muhandis alleged that the strikes were launched from U.S. bases:

The statement from the Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF), the umbrella grouping of Iraq's mostly Shi'ite Muslim paramilitary groups, many of which are backed by Iran, said the United States had allowed four Israeli drones to enter the region accompanying U.S. forces and carry out missions on Iraqi territory.

"We announce that the first and last entity responsible for what happened are the American forces, and we will hold them responsible for whatever happens from today onwards," said the statement, signed by deputy head of the PMF, Jamal Jaafar Ibrahimi, known by his nom de guerre Abu Mahdi al-Mohandes.

The PMF statement came a day after several blasts hit a position held by a PMF group next to Balad air base about 80 kilometers (50 miles) north of Baghdad.

On August 16 Prime Minister Abdul-Mahdi prohibited independent U.S. air traffic in Iraq:

The U.S. has agreed to comply with Abdul-Mahdi's request, officials said Friday, as "guests within Iraq's sovereign borders."

Four days later another dept explosion happened.

The Israeli claim, that Iran is using the Iraqi bases to transport weapons to Syria and Lebanon, is dubious. Iran has for years flown weapons and ammunition directly to Syria, or transported them by ship. It has no need to store them on several bases in Iraq.

I am not yet convinced that these explosions were really caused by outer influence. The ammunition the Hashed received is mostly old. Iraq was recently extraordinary hot with temperatures above 49° Celsius (120 F). All explosions happened in the late afternoon. The ammunition was stored in shipping container or metal sheet warehouse without any ventilation. Three similar explosions happened in August 2018 near Karbala. In June this year a Kurdish Peshmerga munition depot in Erbil went up in flames. A Kurdish news site reported:

It is the third explosion in recent memory taking place at weapons and ammunition storage sites in Erbil. In Aug. 2017, a Peshmerga storage facility near Erbil International Airport (EIA).

Another Kurdish ammunition dump exploded on July 18. Are we to believe that Israel bombs the Pershmerga with whom it is long allied?

The whole information(?) operation, and its revelation now, seems designed to improve the reelection chances for Israel's Prime Minister Netanyahoo.

But it is likely that the incidents will have serious consequences for the U.S military in Iraq. Iraq's government will come under intense pressure to kick the U.S. out of the country. There was already talk in Iraq about acquiring Russian air defense weapons. Iran may also want to offer some appropriate systems. Iran and the Hashed will likely attempt to retaliate for the attacks.

Something in this whole story feels wrong.  Why would the White House let such an imbroglio happen? I see nothing the U.S. could win through it.

UPDATE Aug 23, 15:20 UTC

Two 'Trump administration officials' speak with Bloomberg and contradict the two 'senior American officials' who spoke to the New York Times. The Times claimed that Israeli attacks led to explosions in munition depots in Iraq. Bloomberg now says that summer heat was the likely cause. Our suspicion that this was the case seems fully justified.

The Trump administration suggested the blistering summer heat in Iraq, not alleged Israeli airstrikes, may have been responsible for at least some of the recent explosions that have destroyed Iraqi weapons depots linked to Iran.

Speaking to reporters on Friday, two administration officials said the U.S. had no corroboration that Israel was behind all the explosions. The officials, who asked not to be identified discussing internal deliberations, were referring to a New York Times report earlier Friday that said Israel carried out a strike on a weapons depot in Iraq on Aug. 22.
One of the officials said the U.S. disputed the idea that Israel was behind all the attacks, adding that the cause of the explosions could be the “absolutely raging heat in Baghdad over the summer.”

Posted by b on August 23, 2019 at 7:53 UTC | Permalink


Why indeed. Like so much the US does, it is simply the actions of a sock puppet with a devious and duplicitous hand up it's bum. Whose hand is completely obvious for anyone with their eyes open, and becoming more so with every passing second.

Israel and its promoters are going to find themselves in a very interesting position when the yanks wake up en masse to how totally their country has been infiltrated. Trump is obviously a crypto Jew putting Israel first, but the only thing preventing the Dimocrits from lynching him for it seems to be the pictures of Bill and Hillary that Mossad are holding courtesy of their mate Epstain. Conjecture, I know, but as a theory it explains a lot of the behavior of those involved.

Posted by: eyes wide open | Aug 23 2019 8:27 utc | 1

I see it as a covert means to escalate the anti Iran pressure campaign. Any retaliation will be sold in the MSM as "Iranian aggression" and not placed in the context of these prior strikes. It will then be used as justification for further action either in Iraq or perhaps even beyond its borders in Iran.
Instead of US forces leaving Iraq, we may even see an increase to 'counter Iranian aggression'. Who knows how many Iraqi politicians they may need to buy, or threaten, but it's not like it hasn't been done before.
In a Neocon's mind anyway, that would make sense. The reality may of course be totally different, and as Mr B. mentioned above, it could in fact result in the US getting kicked out of Iraq. Not like the first time a US plan goes tits up and totally backfires on them, but one must see it through the Neocon "logic" first to actually understand the reasons for its implementation.

Posted by: EtTuBrute | Aug 23 2019 8:27 utc | 2

I consider this business about russia possibly green lighting such attacks by Israel on Iran in Iraq to be bad news.

I will be very interested to see what Iran does in response to this, if it does anything at all... or just takes it on the chin, so to speak

& never trust a superpower "ally" not to stab you in the back...

The whole region is inching toward a bigger and bigger conflagration, it would seem

Report: US, Russia gave Israel green light to strike Iran in Syria, Iraq
Under alleged agreement, Jerusalem allowed to conduct attacks against Iranian threats in Middle East, but can’t publicly acknowledge them

"...Moscow and Washington agreed that the Jewish state could conduct these attacks on Iranian targets in order to “ensure Israel’s security,” the source told the London-based Arabic-language Asharq Al-Awsat.... "

Posted by: michaelj72 | Aug 23 2019 8:46 utc | 3


We should wait to see what Iraq does, not Iran. Also, Russia is highly unlikely to give Israel the green light to attack Iraq or Syria. Just Israel/US propaganda.

Posted by: Blue Dotterel | Aug 23 2019 9:22 utc | 4

Iranian Bavar-373 air defense system

I wonder where the F35 was located when it dropped its payload to attack the PMU base and where an Iranian 373 would have to be in order to test its ability against the F35. It has engagement range of 120 miles and a detection range of 180 miles.

Posted by: Christian J Chuba | Aug 23 2019 9:56 utc | 5

@all - I am not yet convinced that Israel really bombed those depots. I have added links and text to the piece above showing that similar explosions happened recently in Kurdish controlled ammo depots. Israel would likely not bomb its Kurdish allies.

This all could be a simple information operation. But the question remains: Why is the U.S. playing along with it.

Posted by: b | Aug 23 2019 10:12 utc | 6

My present theory is that they are using other methods (drones, saboteurs, etc.) and pretending it is being done by F-35s or other "secret methods" so Israel/Bibi can continue to have "deterrence" and the F-35 can look like it is useful for something, etc. There are some claims the drones were sent through Azerbaijan, etc.

I concur it is not what it purports to be, but some form of propaganda/CIA-spook operation to sow discord and doubt (and of course blow shit up).

Posted by: Bemildred | Aug 23 2019 10:20 utc | 7

I think there usually isn't just one motivation. Particularly when the Hegemon does something, it's typically working on multiple levels, in my opinion. Why would the US put out such information/disinformation? There are probably multiple reasons, as for most things the Hegemon does, some of which can even appear to contradict each other at times. So part of it is probably that the Hegemon is constantly playing a global game of pushing hands. Part of it is probably that the Hegemon is hoping to bully Iran into making a move that will appear to justify an all-out US assault. Part of it is that the MIC probably wants to make it look like the f-35 is doing something, even if it's not, as part of a sales strategy, both globally and domestically. Part of it is probably the Hegemon wanting to assert that it is above all consideration of international law, morality and ethics.

As far as I can see, the Hegemon's strategists seem to think in depth a lot more than they are given credit for doing. The bottom line, so to speak, is that it's all about the Hegemon pushing harder and harder towards unquestioned global rule. No nation or group of nations seems to be resolute about pushing back.

It's just like on the playground. Most of the kids on the playground don't really want the bully to rule the playground, but they don't want to be the one to stand up to the bully either. When they see their friend being pummelled, they'd kindof like to come to their friend's defense, but then again ... as long as my friend is being pummelled, I'm not being pummelled...

Posted by: paul | Aug 23 2019 10:53 utc | 8

@ #5 or anyone else dreaming of an F-35 scenario...

Why would anyone risk both the hardware and terrible PR, should an Israeli F-35 go down in Iraq... imagine the explaining to be done both internally and within the greater Arab community.. bye bye US-Saudi-Israeli 'alliance' and the gift of the century for Iran. If it's airborne, the drone theory seems the most plausible by far. Much easier to say a 'surveillance' drone was 'off course' than any manned fighter jet.
Could also just be saboteurs and the drone/airborne cover story helps sow fear, paranoia and confusion.

Posted by: EtTuBrute | Aug 23 2019 11:02 utc | 9

Also, there is zero chance Iran would ever use its air defences over Iraq now, that would be only help serve the US narrative for no tactical or strategic gain.

Posted by: EtTuBrute | Aug 23 2019 11:06 utc | 10


Damn Man were do you get this stuff. You never cease to amaze.

I wish you would write a textbook for history students on document research. It would make for a great history methods course.

Posted by: Tom Verso | Aug 23 2019 11:28 utc | 11

Likely a drone or old fashion sabotage. The Zionist will not risk flying one of their gold vaults (F-35s) into hostile territory. They much prefer sneak standoff attacks. One smoldering pile of F-35 in a third world country would put an end to the trillion dollar sop.

Posted by: ger | Aug 23 2019 11:42 utc | 13

Definitely part of Bibi's campaign too. Dick-waving everywhere.

Israel preparing to bomb Houthis in Yemen to warn them away from Iran – reports

Posted by: Bemildred | Aug 23 2019 11:50 utc | 14

Perhaps the US support for Israel's claims is to justify shovelling more American taxpayer-funded billions into Israel's black-hole bank accounts, so that country can spend more on buying ever more US armaments and military equipment of dubious capabilities, and maintain its increasingly shaky status of having the most powerful armed forces in the Middle East. If the US public were to know how weak and demoralised the IDF might actually be, people would question why so much of their money is flooding into Israel's coffers.

MoA barflies wouldn't put it past Israel to bomb the Peshmerga if the Israelis were to think some short-term strategic advantage might accrue to them from thumping the Peshmerga in some way.

Posted by: Jen | Aug 23 2019 11:54 utc | 15

Whenever I hear a story about ANYONE completing a successful military operation using an F-35 I assume it's a Lockheed Martin advertorial. A couple of days ago Niqnaq had a link to a story about the Dems pushing for a US-"Israel" mutual defense treaty. I hope it comes to pass because the Yanks and the "Israelis" besides being neck & neck in the Stupidity Stakes, also believe too much of their own bullshit. So we may soon find out how keen the Neocon desk jockeys and keyboard warriors posing as "Real Men" are to see Iran attacked and "Israel" wiped off the map.

If Iran has supplied Hezbollah with 100,000 missiles, one wonders how many missiles the Iranians have kept for themselves (for Express Delivery to what used to be called "Israel" (cough cough)?

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Aug 23 2019 12:03 utc | 16

"US, Russia gave Israel green light to strike Iran in Syria, Iraq
Under alleged agreement, Jerusalem allowed to conduct attacks against Iranian threats in Middle East, but can’t publicly acknowledge them.."
Look at the source, man: The Times of Israel. It is extremely unlikely that Russia is asked to 'authorise' strikes on Iraq, even less likely that it allowed any.
What we have here is the expression of Israeli desires: they would very much like to bomb Iraq. And they very much wish that the F-35s could be trusted to carry out attacks on the arms depots of militias. And they would very much like Russian approval of their wishes.
And all these deep desires become news reports- more splendid victories by the ever victorious IDF. The only thing that sounds right about this propaganda is that it suggested an attack by Israel on a country occupied by US forces and unable to defend itself. That certainly rings true.
Israel has a real problem here: the planned strategic alliance with militarily dominant Saudi and Emirati forces and Israel's complete control over the Arabian peninsula, through these satrapies, is now an impossible dream. Another thwarted desire. Another strategic master stroke busted.
And Israel's response is to reach out for the one really dependable weapon that it has, and always has had, the US media. One of these days the NY Times is going to report that the IDF has established a base on Pluto from which it plans to rule the Universe, solar system by solar system, with US and Russian approval. I'm going to be very sceptical.

Posted by: bevin | Aug 23 2019 12:33 utc | 17

Seems it could just as likely have been the U.S.
Iraq subject to bombing by it's ally.
Seems world has a stark choice:
Develop/acquire air defense or live under thumb of U.S.

Posted by: jared | Aug 23 2019 12:39 utc | 18

The explosions might also have been caused by sabotage, right?

Posted by: mk | Aug 23 2019 12:40 utc | 19

One factor often overlooked with stealth aircraft is that while they may be difficult to spot in the air, the ground infrastructure to support them is not difficult to spot. With Iran having missiles that can hit anywhere in Israel, all Israeli airbases are vulnerable to attack from Iran. With Iron Dome being incapable of dealing with "swarm" attacks from Gaza, if Iran gets to pissed off with Israel, there is always the possibility that by combining long range missile attacks from Iran with "swarming" short-range missile attacks from Lebanon and Gaza, the Israeli Air Force, the principal source of Israel's military capability, can be relegated to the pages of history. Add in the type of attack drone/cruise missile used recently by the Houthis in Yemen, and Israel's position looks even weaker.

Posted by: Ghost Ship | Aug 23 2019 12:43 utc | 20

@ Ghost Ship | Aug 23 2019 12:43 utc | 20

I think clearly that is the game:
Israel to provoke Iran into attack, U.S. to respond.
American public is being prepared for this eventuality.

Posted by: jared | Aug 23 2019 12:47 utc | 21

The whole information(?) operation, and its revealing now, seems designed to improve the reelection chances for Israel's Prime Minister Netanyahoo.

Seems by far the most plausible explanation to me. It is also conceivable that Israel's proxies (Kurds?) launched ground-based sabotage attacks, i.e. "launched from within Iraq" - but then the Kurdish incidents also need to be explained. Are there any analogous "spontaneous" explosions in Syria, and are there any munitions stored in similar non-ventilated containers there?

Something in this whole story feels wrong. Why would the White House let such an imbroglio happen? I see nothing the U.S. could win through it.

Since when has the US ever told the truth? The only rule of thumb with any consistent reliability is: If the US claims something, then the opposite is more likely to be true.

Posted by: BM | Aug 23 2019 12:48 utc | 22

jared | Aug 23 2019 12:47 utc | 21 - continued:

Best if it can happen about 1 year prior to U.S. election.

Posted by: jared | Aug 23 2019 12:49 utc | 23

This may be a brain fart, but, could the possibility be an Iranian covert operation (light a fuse for Iraq to take action) to force the USA and their Zionist bosses to accept responsibility? Iraq then is pushed closer to Iranian influence? I do not have information or links, just a brain storm, it's Friday and I am tired!

Posted by: Taffyboy | Aug 23 2019 12:51 utc | 24

sounds like it could be another case of "israeli nonsense = plausible deniability". why kill your wife's lover when you can hire a hitman? it's not like they'd ever turn down the chance to bomb muslims.

it might be a warning or it may be a preemptive reduction of arms that could be used to aid iran even if they aren't "iranian" in a literal sense. events in syria (and iran and israel) along with the usual internal pressure from al-sadr and such have steadily pushed iraq toward the iranian side. the "b-team" are frothing at the mouth like rabid dogs are wont to do; if attacking iran/syria is a foregone conclusion and they want to keep their tenuous relations with iraq this might be part of an effort to prevent them from joining the fray whether they want to or not.

as usual, just a guess. there are also many israeli assets within the iraqi military who might be selling out strategic locations. or maybe the ammo was just crap and sitting in 110F heat for days at a time finally broke something.

Posted by: the pair | Aug 23 2019 12:52 utc | 25

@3 michaelj72 Why does Iran have to do *anything* about this?

The mere rumour that Israel is flying missions into Iraqi airspace is enough to cause the Iraqis to curtail USAF flights inside the country. Any more rumours could very well see the USAF ordered out of Iraq.

The USAF operating from airbases inside Iraq is a much bigger strategic threat to Iran than anything that Bibi can throw into the air, so the Iranians would be well advised to follow the Bonaparte rule: never interrupt your enemy when he is making a mistake.

Posted by: Yeah, Right | Aug 23 2019 13:00 utc | 26

>>>>> jared | Aug 23 2019 12:47 utc | 21

Israel to provoke Iran into attack, U.S. to respond.

Nah, I think you're wrong. The balance of power in the Middle East has changed. If the United States attacks Iran, Iran will force the United States to invade Iran and that will be far more damaging for the United States and its poodles than the Iraq invasion was. The JCS recognize this and will counsel against any intervention unless the very existence of Israel is threatened. An Iranian attack on Israeli airbases might weaken Israel but only in its ability to attack its neighbours without facing retribution but it won't represent an existential threat. Also, Americans don't like loser and Israel will be the loser.

Posted by: Ghost Ship | Aug 23 2019 13:14 utc | 27

The Iraqis are preparing for more explosions, whatever their cause:

Abdul Mahdi [commander-in-chief of Iraqi forces] also ordered the relocation of all ammunition depots, including those of the Hashd Shaabi units, to areas outside the cities.

Posted by: Trailer Trash | Aug 23 2019 13:33 utc | 28

It's also possible that they are using these events to create the illusion that their F35i fleet is invisible.

Posted by: ruca | Aug 23 2019 13:36 utc | 29

Mohammad Marandi (interviewed by The Saker) throws water on the "Russia greenlights the Zioninst entity" meme.
Thanks for the continued awesome reporting, b. And regarding the capabilities of newish stealth tech; "stealth" = reduced radar signature, not invisible. Neither the US nor the Zionist entity in occupied Palestine (which already had one F-35 damaged over Syria by a "bird strike") will risk the bad press if a Pantsir or an S-300/400 class ADS causes catastrophic mechanical failure to one of these hundred million dollar lemons.

Posted by: robjira | Aug 23 2019 13:47 utc | 30

It was hot 4 times = 4 explosions inside of a short time span.

yes, and Epstein committed suicide too.

Posted by: ebolax | Aug 23 2019 14:23 utc | 31

@ Posted by: EtTuBrute | Aug 23 2019 11:02 utc | 9

It's funny to still see US "think tanks" pooh-poohing China/Russia/Iran military hardware as being battle-unproven trash, as it their own crown jewels designed for maximum MIC profit aren't.

Posted by: JW | Aug 23 2019 14:43 utc | 32

The U.S. has too many lethal power structures too independent of each other and employing too many brutal tactics; tactics with varias instant intentions but which are not integrated under an intelligent strategy. Or something like that.

Posted by: RJB | Aug 23 2019 16:03 utc | 33

Regardless of whodoneit, the results IMO are very positive: Ammo dumps will be moved to what is hoped will be better containments outside of population centers; USAF ops are greatly constricted; anti-US military presence escalated; and since the Outlaw US Empire will now be blamed for any further incidents, the logical thing to do is eject them as there's absolutely zero reasons for them to be anywhere in the region that could be considered legitimate. The remainder of the narrative is, IMO, all about boosting Nuttyahoo's reelection.

Posted by: karlof1 | Aug 23 2019 16:04 utc | 34

It does seem more likely that most, if not all, of these explosions are heat related. The "Israeli" factor is added in to supply some kind of optics of success for Israel. They badly need it, as does the US, after the numerous ineffective airstrikes made against Syria.

Posted by: what did I just read | Aug 23 2019 16:19 utc | 35

Ah another news article to get people accustomed to the idea that Israel can go around bitch slapping other countries in the region in regards to sovereignty. Whether Israel carried this out or not, with or without the help of the US is irrelevant because the meme is that Israel is allowed to enter other sovereign nations and conduct military operations under the guise of 'fighting terrorism'.

Posted by: O | Aug 23 2019 16:33 utc | 36

>>>> robjira | Aug 23 2019 13:47 utc | 31

if a Pantsir ...... causes catastrophic mechanical failure to one of these hundred million dollar lemons.

Unlikely unless the Israelis are dumb enough to use an F-35i to perform a low-level attack on a "point" target. An F-35i would launch a standoff PGM against such a target and the Pantsir could shoot that down but doesn't have the range or altitude to hit the F-35i launching it. But then again certain Israeli institutions , such as IDF and Mossad, do now have a reputation for doing dumb things. Careful mobile use of Pantsirs could however force F-35is to fly higher where they might be more vulnerable to S-300 systems.

Posted by: Ghost Ship | Aug 23 2019 16:49 utc | 37

@Taffyboy 24

Notice that in all of these explosions, there was hardly any report of casualties.

So is it plausible that Iranians took a page out of CIA/Mossad false flag playbook? Why not. It sure may yield them some positive results.

You may not be so far off.

Posted by: Uncle Jon | Aug 23 2019 16:56 utc | 38

B I don't think you're wrong.

When I look at the first Haaretz link this is what I get: location seems to be the most factual part of the claim yet Haaretz manages to describe a place they call Camp Ashraf as north-east of Baghdad when their own map shows it almost due north and the rest of their "news" has no attempt by Haaretz to supply corroboration or links to their own external source and gives no actual details concerning anything at all.

(Not that anyone else (MSN, RT, Sputnik) ever does either.)

No details despite Haaretz' claims of "Iranian ballistic missiles", an (implying single) Israeli "F-35" 80km from the Iranian border, dead "Iranian advisers", and a repeat strike on some unspecified "Sunday" (could be either 21th or 28th of July).

100% fantasy is the natural reaction.

I know that was just one link of many but it strongly indicates there is nothing at all to any of the Israeli and US claims.

Posted by: Sunny Runny Burger | Aug 23 2019 17:03 utc | 39

to believe the Israelis is not to respect yourself.

Posted by: who? | Aug 23 2019 17:09 utc | 40

Yet another reason to get the Outlaw US Empire out of Iraq and the region was revealed today:

"Tehran Proposes Helping Baghdad Build Cross-Country Oil Pipeline to Link Iran to Syria."

Such a development is quite logical and provides a bit more weight to the possibility of the explosions being Iranian false flags as suggested by a few up thread. Such a project is clearly in Syria and Iran's interests, but not so much Iraq's. Lots of Iraqi oil infrastructure still awaits repair from the Empire's invasion, and the proposal for its repair will serve to remind Iraqis who damaged and never repaired it.

Posted by: karlof1 | Aug 23 2019 17:22 utc | 41

Syrian Army pilot, Omran Merie, whose fighter jet was shot down today by the Israeli occupation army while he was hunting ISIS terrorists near the borders of occupied Golan Heights.Source

Posted by: arata | Aug 23 2019 17:24 utc | 42

OOPs! that was 24 JUly 2018

Posted by: arata | Aug 23 2019 17:35 utc | 43

Maybe is all just a PR stunt to try and demonstrate how the F-35 is a technological wonder in order to generate sales this the lack of specific information. Think it is well known the F-35 is a boondoggle. Has any country bought any F-35s or is the US only able to give them away?

Posted by: Joe | Aug 23 2019 18:45 utc | 44

I think it most likely the explosions are due to old ammo, improperly stored.

As mentioned near the top, afternoon temps in Iraq of late have approached 50 deg Celsius. That's damn hot.

If the ammo was stored in closed containers, the interior temp of those was considerably higher, possibly as high as 100 deg Celsius.

Detonation was likely to follow.

I agree however, that the resistance is using this issue to ground the USAF in iraq, thus crippling it's interference with operations in theatre, and
to force the exit of US forces altogether.


Posted by: Dr. George W Oprisko | Aug 23 2019 18:46 utc | 45

US invented F35 v/s God created Syrian baptized Pigeon...

Score 1 for the Pigeon v/s IAF...

Posted by: Igor Bundy | Aug 23 2019 19:02 utc | 46

arata Yes we know the israeli's shot down a Syrian fighter on the way to bomb ISIS 10 km or so inside Syria. This happened when the SAA was liberating the south of Syria. The entire area is now cleared of terrorists and they were shipped off the middle of the desert near DZ and still causing a ruckus.. We always knew israel supported and created terrorists of every stripe.

Posted by: Igor Bundy | Aug 23 2019 19:06 utc | 47

Camp Ashraf - I remember it well. Perhaps some old ammunition left over from the MeK days blew up - it could be over thirty years old.

Posted by: Ghost Ship | Aug 23 2019 20:16 utc | 48

"...Israel takes the blame..", questions the Official spox of the State Department assigned to MoA?

It is cute that it is trying to pretend that its side is sane, but everyone knows it isn't blame that Israel is assigning to itself but rather credit. Of course, since the Israeli establishment are all pathological liars they cannot convincingly claim credit themselves so they need their political gimp on the other side of the Atlantic to do it for them.

Posted by: William Gruff | Aug 23 2019 20:30 utc | 49

Kudos to you b that admit that you may have been wrong. Something we all get when we analyze multiple events.

Comparing that to the usual 2-3 commentators attacked me back then for bringing forward this attack as some fake news - of course the same people are silent now, well judging the situation now - after repeated israeli attacks, good job being - once again - useful idiots for Israel by denying that these attacks even have occurred.

Posted by: Zanon | Aug 23 2019 20:41 utc | 50

to the poster O who seems to have missed the last thread -
Open Thread 2019-49


No personal attacks
No spiffy one-liners
No sock-puppetry
Off-topic comments belong into the open threads....

Posted by: james | Aug 23 2019 21:11 utc | 51

the new york lying times is playing along with it because it is good promo for netanyahu and the f35...

low odds on it being an iranian false flag... i am not sure about explosions based on the heat.. i am not knowledgeable on that angle..

Posted by: james | Aug 23 2019 21:14 utc | 52

@ james | Aug 23 2019 21:14 utc | 56

'low odds on it being an iranian false flag... i am not sure about explosions based on the heat.. i am not knowledgeable on that angle..'

Yep, we can't know without proper data. One would need to be having access to at least the temperature profiles in the storage containers over the course of days, weeks and months, type of munitions, type of energetic materials and mixtures thereof, their respective thermal stability, types and quantities of stabilizers used with energetic formulations -and so forth- to be able to sort this out.

Posted by: Hmpf | Aug 23 2019 21:50 utc | 53

A few days ago I read about Iraq prohibiting its airspace to any foreign military plane,so the americans also have to ask permission to fly missions.This because of the israeli-claimed bombings of munition depots and because Iraq likes to know who is bombing.So now the USA points the finger to Israel,as to support Netanyahoo,and easen up towards the Iraqi government.

Posted by: willie | Aug 23 2019 22:12 utc | 54

Bemildred #12 and #14 ??

where is there any provable images of this 'downed drone' that you and PressTV report?

Propaganda is everywhere and your post smells fishy. Evidence please Bemildred.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Aug 23 2019 22:17 utc | 55

If everyone will avoid the temptation to indulge in attacks on others, we could get back to having a decent thread here. But if that doesn't happen, then this thread, as with so many others, is lost.

It was the first lesson the Internet learned, and it's been supremely sane advice every day since, and applicable in every instance including this one: never, ever feed those whom you suspect of being inauthentic.

Never, ever feed them and they will eventually die on the vine from neglect.

Posted by: Grieved | Aug 23 2019 22:36 utc | 56

Is the f-35 a trillion dollar boondoggle that allowed Russia and China to catch up to the USA in air defense...yes.

Is the f-35 still a better jet than all but a handful of what the Russian and Chinese air-force currently have fielded...yes.

Is the f-35 far more than a match for any Iraqi air-defenses...yes...the Iraqis have minimal air defense at this point, f-35's can operate over Iraq with close to 0% chance of being shot down, especially if they are posing as American jets as allegedly the Israeli planes were.

Stealth is quickly losing a lot of it's luster with a variety of new radar and detection devices deployed by the Russians and Chinese, but, at the moment, it is still a fairly decisive advantage in most theatres. That is changing, which is part of the reason USA/Israel want to push for war sooner rather than later.

Posted by: Hassaan | Aug 23 2019 22:44 utc | 57

uncle tungsten @60: Oh they might well be propaganda, not claiming one way or another. The one is relevant to Hash'd al-Shaabi efforts to pry US out of Iraq, the other to Israeli attempts to portray themselves as omniscient and omnipotent, able to bomb at will anywhere. I haven't gone looking for the drone or anything like that. If they have one, it will pop up eventually. Likewise, if they bomb the Houthis, we'll hear about it.

Posted by: Bemildred | Aug 23 2019 22:56 utc | 58

Lets try not to jump out of the frying pan and into the fire. There is exactly ZERO evidence that Israel has used an F 35 in Iraq. If they are involved at all, which is iffy at best, it would be through sabotage or by those tiny suicide drones they use. As laughable as the F 35 is, using it for such low end tasks is costly...far more costly than it is worth. And face it, if they are forced to use the F 35 in an airspace with no air defenses to speak of, what does that say about that plane?? I doubt the propaganda ministers clearly thought this one out.

Posted by: what did I just read | Aug 23 2019 23:28 utc | 59

Probably no response at all. The Iranians will restrain them from any response. At least not now.

The heat seems unlikely to cause explosions in three different locations especially in a location where that kind of ambient heat is more normal than not.

The announcement of the pipeline through Syria with the help of Iranians makes their false flag involvement even more plausible. It would be a nice way to get rid of the Americans altogether.

Posted by: Uncle Jon | Aug 23 2019 23:50 utc | 60

i think this is related to the US(Pompeo/Satterfield) asking Mahdi to incorporate the PMUs into the iraqi army, but who really thought he could do that?. and i think that was in preparation for what ever our (or israels) plans are for pressuring/attacking iran. in part, i think the timing is related to the next israeli election. after netanyahu failed to put a gov together the knesset dissolved itself on may30. hence, whatever plans the US/IS had were put on hold. less than a week later (may 7) pompeo heads to iraq (unannounced, "surprise visit" abruptly canceling plans to berlin. why? warning to iran) asking to disband the PMU. by july it wasn't done yet. mahdi said it would be done by the end of July. this seems like a timing thing. they gave mahdi an allotted time to do that, and now they are bombing/threatening. i think israel/US is planning some action against iran to begin after the next israeli election. this window is closing in on the US 2020 election so whatever they plan on doing it has to happen now.

it has something to do w/the PMU demand.

Posted by: annie | Aug 24 2019 4:44 utc | 61

It is difficult to render any judgement with the media being filled with stories farmed out by various intelligence agencies. That being said remember this blast for the past?

U.S. pressures Baghdad over Iran-backed militias

Pompeo makes a surprise visit to Iraq in May threatening unilateral action against Iran's militias threatening US interests in Irag. Now a bunch of sites blow up and US air forces are grounded. The rumor mill turns to Israel and then the NY times pushes that angle as well which was obviously a story farmed out by US intelligence.

If US is now using Israel for a sock puppet for its unilateral actions it is only because they have now lost their ability to fly independently at any time in Iraq. Were the Iran backed militias building up stockpiles for a strike against the US if they situation escalates in the Persian gulf?

The Tanker War has grown cold. The fake terrorism against shipping lanes the Straight of Hormuz has grown cold. Are things getting ready to heat up again if the proper amount of safe space has been built up? One can only speculate. I am sure the NY times article was farmed out with the blessings of the Israel. The US would dare to do nothing without kissing the ring.

Posted by: dltravers | Aug 24 2019 6:35 utc | 62

Perhaps mostly to b but also to anyone who speaks Persian and might help.

I have used to try to understand the report in Persian (which I do not speak or know anything about) by that was linked to in the previous thread (comment 183 by Zanon, huge URL) and which is claimed to concern the burial ceremony of Abolfazl which "certain others" translated to Abu Alfazl Sarabian (I don't know if that is the correct translation of the name).

There is a mention of Iraq but it is something like this:

yesterday on XXXX from defenders of the shrine of YYYY insurgents throughout Iraq, came to testify. This martyr, defender of the shrine of the people of Kermanshah province was the head of the martyr, the province is considered

where the XXXX and YYYY are untranslated (and plays havoc with copy-pasting since the text direction changes).

I can see no kind of substantiation on that page of this person having being killed in Iraq by Israel as "everyone" using it as a source claims: those using it as a source of Iran "admitting" anything or corroborating an attack seem to be lying and there are a lot of them and they're all very similar as a search for "Abu Alfazl Sarabian" (including quotation marks) using will show. No points for guessing who they are.

I have tried but failed to find any translation of the article in the English language archive of YJC.

Considering we in the west use Arabic numerals I think the YJC report release date of "۲۹ July" should be July the 19th. However the ceremony is reported to be held on a Saturday morning which would have been the 20ieth. I don't know if the Iranians count days in the month from 0 or do something else special or if it could be a simple error.

In addition the person was from Kermanshah province in western Iran and received a farewell ceremony in Teheran.

All of this makes me suspect one would need to invoke time travel for this person to have been killed by an exploding ammunition dump in Iraq on the 19th 80 km away from the Iranian border. I can't be entirely certain but things would have to happen very fast if they are as I think they might be.

Most of all this persons death and the Iranian news about his ceremony (or at least this one, I would think there should be more) does not in any way validate any talk about Israeli attacks or F-35's etc.

So the more time I've spent on this the less I think there's anything to it* and the decision by Iraq to exercise the sovereignty that is rightfully theirs doesn't/shouldn't require anything (although if it can make use of Israeli and US propaganda there's nothing wrong with that).

I'm sure both Iran and the Russian Federation has excellent radar coverage sufficient for both to know what did or didn't happen and Iraq already has a working military (anti-terrorist) relationship with both (hosted in Baghdad if memory serves me, although I guess it could have concluded by now).

* All the sources for the non-Kurdish reports are from Israel, the US, the UK, and the big agencies or directly attributed to them. I can't take any of it (what little there is**) at face value but even if I did most of them mix up all sorts of things in an attempt to fill out what is essentially nothing but a claim that "some attacks happened" in addition to attributing it to anonymous "sources".

** There is no shortage of smartphones and social media users in either Iraq or Syria. Even if I don't use social media there are many who do and who others should have noticed and which ought to have crept through local reporting and over into English language alternatives by now. Sure something either exploded or was on fire, and Iraq officially says it was some depot etc., but that's about all there seems to be to it.

Except all the lies and attempts at provocation from Israel and the US of course.

Posted by: Sunny Runny Burger | Aug 24 2019 8:08 utc | 63

Sorry for that post being so convoluted, I tried to avoid it but should probably have tried harder.

Posted by: Sunny Runny Burger | Aug 24 2019 8:18 utc | 64

Of course, the Hashd al-Sha'bi is not actually anything to do with Iran, apart from being vaguely allied with Iran. They're not proxies, but rather Iraqis fighting alongside the regular army in the war against Da'ish. They can best be described as sort of Shi'a jihadis.

All of these events took place north and northeast of Baghdad. One report I saw yesterday, although evidently not much the truth, talked about an attack on the Samarra East airbase, and showed a video with a not very big fire, all the while lauding the Israeli secret F35 success. By the way, the US also shares that airbase, I believe. I don't know whether Israel would be willing to risk hitting Americans, nor would it be likely that munitions being sent to Iranian forces in Syria would be stored where US military could see them.

Well, there have also been a number of reports recently about a revival of Da'ish (ISIS) in the north of Iraq. There are a lot of Da'ish in the villages in the area round Samarra, and in Diyala. The obvious answer is that these were Da'ish attacks, who hate the Shi'a more than they hate the Americans. The US being doctrinally irrelevant, but the real enemy are the hated heretics, the Shi'a. And the Hashd have not been delicate in the north.

Posted by: Laguerre | Aug 24 2019 8:18 utc | 65

Thank you Laguerre that makes a lot more sense and could perhaps be what happened.

Posted by: Sunny Runny Burger | Aug 24 2019 8:26 utc | 66

Posted by: Sunny Runny Burger | Aug 24 2019 8:08 utc | 68

we in the west use Arabic numerals I think the YJC report release date of "۲۹ July" should be July the 19th. However the ceremony is reported to be held on a Saturday morning which would have been the 20ieth. I don't know if the Iranians count days in the month from 0 or do something else special or if it could be a simple error.
The Iranians have a completely different calendar from the rest of the world, called Solar Hijri, where the era starts in 622 like the rest of Islam but uses solar not lunar years. The year starts on 21st of March, and the 1st of the month is on the 20th or 21st. You had the 29th of the month, not the 19th, which could well indeed be the 20th, depending on the month. There are converters on-line. It's very confusing when you are there in Iran.

Posted by: Laguerre | Aug 24 2019 8:44 utc | 67

re. the interview

Main takeaways from interview:
- All of these countries recognize that if the Americans are able to undermine any of them, whether it is Syria, Iran, Russia, or China, then that would only encourage the United States to be more aggressive towards the remaining countries that impede US foreign policy objectives or exist as potential rivals whether regionally or globally.
- In the long run, this continued US behavior is only going to create further resentment among Iraqis. The empire rarely takes these realities into account, they seek to accumulate influence and wealth through brute force, but in the long term it creates deep-rooted anger and hostility which, at some point, will create great problems for the empire, especially as this anger and unrest is growing across the region, if not across the globe.

Still, the ME countries are also and foremost at fault because of their never ending disputes largely related to religious differences easily manipulated by outsiders. When they realize this they w>all have peace.

Still I recognize in myself and the opinions of others, we believe what supports our preferences.

Posted by: jared | Aug 24 2019 12:04 utc | 68

I vaguely remember when Iraq Iran were at war.
Was pretty lame as reported by u.s. prop outlets.
Then on build up to first Bush war, the props were promoting how fierce were the Iraqi army. Then it was walkover.
Now some are taking about difficulty to engage in war in Venezuela, but remember Yugoslavi where Hillary helo'ed in, brave soul.
I guess Iran could do some damage but likely could be managed and is good for economy.
Don't call it empire of chaos for nothing.

Posted by: jared | Aug 24 2019 12:54 utc | 69

Or I should have said it was Kuwait that was the walkover.

Posted by: jared | Aug 24 2019 13:16 utc | 70

Suppose that the U.S. regime were struggling to get its foreign allies that had ordered F-35s to not cancel all of some of the planes ordered.

Suppose that there actually was an Israeli F-35 round-trip into into Iran over Iraq, bombing in Iraq.

Suppose that the U.S. regime wanted its increasingly recalcitrant foreign F-35 customers to know this but not the public to know it. After all: it would serve as cardinal evidence of the F-35's success as stealth, right? And, since it would be something that is intended to persuade only those foreign customers, there would be no official and public indication of it.

Might that be the likeliest explanation, at this stage?

Posted by: Eric Zuesse | Aug 24 2019 14:01 utc | 71

Zuesse @ 73

Wash your mouth out with soap for everbody know (at MoA) the US only builds overpriced decadent junk which doesn't work while the Russians and Chinese are now non-pareil world leaders in military technology and, and, well pretty much everything. Oh and they follow the noble eightfold path too.

Posted by: donkeytale | Aug 24 2019 14:18 utc | 72

Grand Ayatollah Kazim al-Haeri, a leading Shiite Muslim religious leader who is popular in Iraq, has declared that US military presence in Iraq is forbidden.
. . .from Elijah Magnier: Grand Ayatollah Kazem al-Haeri issued a Fatwa related to the #US forces: " I declare Haram allowing any US military force and the like to stay in Iraq under any title: military training and advice, or the pretext of combating terrorism ." . .here

Posted by: Don Bacon | Aug 24 2019 14:30 utc | 73

from Juan Cole
Former Iraqi PM Threatens Military action against Israel after Tel Aviv Bombed Shiite Militia Base . . Former prime minister of Iraq, Nouri al-Maliki, responded to news that Israel had bombed Shiite militia bases in Iraq with threats that if it continued, Iraq would take strong defensive measures and would carry the fight to Israel itself, forming a multinational coalition and backed by Iran.. . .here

Posted by: Don Bacon | Aug 24 2019 14:45 utc | 74

dt @ 74

" everbody know (at MoA) the US only builds overpriced decadent junk which doesn't work "

yup, see 737 MAX for details

Posted by: arby | Aug 24 2019 14:47 utc | 75

So when Syria is a mess US, Israel began to desyroy Iraq. Again.

Constant attacks now..
Iraq Battles Aircraft After Strikes Blamed on Israel and U.S. Against Iran Allies

Posted by: Zanon | Aug 24 2019 15:00 utc | 76

check your sources folks.... let me repeat @17 bevins quote -

" Israel's response is to reach out for the one really dependable weapon that it has, and always has had, the US media."

Posted by: james | Aug 24 2019 15:36 utc | 77

I agree this is very odd.

Imagine Israel did this. Why would the US confess that Israel did it? That's effectively a confession that the US helped Israel and so confessing certainly wouldn't protect the US from retaliation from the Iraqi gov or the shia militias.

Bibi electioneering? Sure. Maybe Bolton hopes for a reaction from the shia militias that he can use to hurt Iran but even that is going to be hard because the people retaliating would be iraqis not iranians and they have a right to retaliate. But i wouldn't put much beyond Bolton. Nor is the man all that intelligent.

This is strange. Maybe its just a Netanyahu stunt gone bad. I guess its possible the US is outing Israel because Israel acted against US wishes but again the US will pay the price for the outing so really:

someone wants shia militias to attack US forces in Iraq.

Posted by: alaric | Aug 24 2019 15:44 utc | 78

Whatever happened, the story line is being (or attempted to be) controlled by the military. It's called Information Operations (IO) --propaganda to us -- and it comes under the Joint Information Operations Warfare Center.

from a FAS document:

Information operations is the integrated employment, during military operations, of information-related capabilities in concert with other lines of operation to influence, disrupt, corrupt, or usurp the decision-making of adversaries and potential adversaries while protecting our own.
One purpose of IO involves affecting an adversary’s ability to make sense of unfolding events. Affecting the adversary’s perception of an event can indirectly impair, disrupt,or disable the adversary’s ability to lead and direct operations. At the same time IO affects those perceptions, it attempts to preserve friendly commanders’ ability to lead their forces and understand, visualize, describe, and direct operations. . .here

Posted by: Don Bacon | Aug 24 2019 16:50 utc | 79

When the corporate mass media prattles on about America's magically invisible aircraft, remember that they are neither magical nor invisible. These aircraft are readily detectable with low frequency radar, though it takes significant signal processing to acquire a weapons grade fix on a target with such radar. Even without the advanced signal processing one can fix the general location of a stealth aircraft, just not accurately enough to guide a missile to it.

China and Russia both have sufficient programming talent to master the signal processing necessary to use low frequency radar for targeting, and it seems likely that the Iranians do as well. At the very least the Iranians are using low frequency radar for long range early warning. We know that kind of radar is active in Syria as well because it is part of the S-400 system that was installed there. While I don't know what kind of radar Iraq has available, I think it is safe to assume that at least portions of its airspace are covered by the systems deployed by its neighbors.

The point that I am trying to make is that while it might be difficult to actually target a stealth aircraft without some of the higher end systems such as those that the Russians and Chinese have fielded, it would be just as difficult to conduct attacks with a stealth aircraft without it being detected at all. If there was no hint of an aircraft operating in the area, then it seems most probable that there was no aircraft operating in the area.

Posted by: William Gruff | Aug 24 2019 17:06 utc | 80

@ 81
There's a bit in the FAS document about social media and its "becoming an integral component of operations:"
3-52. The information environment spotlights the growing impact of social media (see also paragraph 2-14). Although not listed in Table 3-1 because it is still an emergent IRC, social media has the potential to become a powerful capability for IO. Some possible applications include—
--Social media as a media channel, such as radio, newspapers, and television.
--Social media as an interactive medium for exerting influence.
--Social media as a means to communicate with an established network or networks.
--Social media as a near real-time sensor-to-sensor network.
3-53. Social media is rapidly expanding beyond the realm of public affairs, IO, or intelligence functions and becoming an integral component of operations, particularly those occurring in and through the information environment. Even as the institutional Army explores force modernization aspects of social media—such as doctrine, organizations, personnel, and training— commanders and staffs need to understand social media’s impact and incorporate this understanding into planning and operations (see Social Media - The Vital Ground: Can We Hold It? for a broader discussion of social media)

Posted by: Don Bacon | Aug 24 2019 17:09 utc | 81

A principal difficulty of using the F-35 for deep strike, it seems to me, is the fact that while some stealth is present in the attack phase it is absent in the plane's return. The F-35 engine is the largest and hottest engine ever put in a fighter plane, with a huge departing heat signature (pedal to the metal) making it an easy prey for high-speed (including hypersonic) missiles with heat sensors. One-way trips, anyone? Which is perhaps why the USAF currently is short over a thousand fighter pilots.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Aug 24 2019 17:22 utc | 82

@65 Sunny Runny Burger

The said Farsi news dated 20 July 2019 Saturday ( 29 Tir Farsi calendar). Translation here:

"According to the Hot News reporter at the Young Journalists Club (YJC) cyberspace, this morning (Saturday, 29 Tir),  the venrable body of martyr   "Abolfazl Sarabian"  a defender of Shrine entered Tehran's Paradise Street. The body of the martyr Sarabian was transferred to Tehran after circumambulation in the holy Shrine of Sayyid al-Shohada(Karbala-Iraq). Farewell ceremony with the body of this martyr was held today in Meraj al-Shohada in Tehran, after which the body of martyr Sarabian will be transferred to Kermanshah province for farewell and funeral.

Abolfazl Sarabian, a defender of the shrine of Allah, was martyred yesterday in al-Amara, Iraq. This martyr was a defender of the shrine of Kermanshah province and is the 16th martyr in this province [ defender of Shrine].

The following is a screenshot of the ceremony at the Miraj al-Shohada in Tehran: "

You can see in map the Al-Amara  is located in East-South near to Iranian border. Most likly he was killed in operation by local terrorist, noting to do with Israel. 

Since Syrian war and  Daesh (ISIS) insurgent such news are very often seen in Farsi media. These type news seldom attributed to Israel attack.


Posted by: arata | Aug 24 2019 17:25 utc | 83

@82 William Gruff

"These aircraft are readily detectable with low frequency radar,"

They are likely detectable in a number of frequencies and not just lower bands. Stealth crafts absorb some radar and the right angles reflect some of the radar away from the radar device but some of the reflected energy will arrive back at the radar and modern radar (especially those that are arrays (lots of little antennas and transceivers) are very, very, very, very sensitive owing to the performance of the individual microwave (analog) radio components and the multitude of them (arrays) and due to the enormous and cheap signal processing techniques/power you can do with modern digital processor chips.

The other thing is that once the stealth craft goes into an area with dense radar coverage, some of the radio signals that are reflected to the side will inevitably be picked up and communicated. I imagine russian Radars are also frequency agile meaning they don't just operate in one band so they'll get different levels of info from different bands that can be combined especially once they know what they're looking for and they do thanks to the S-400 in Syria and the US operations all over near russian air space.

There are acoustic and infrared detectors that are quite effective especially in combination with radio waves and old school visual, human, spotters. Modern radar systems also exploit the vast amount of radio waves employed by TV, radio (FM), cell phone towers, etc and most of these are under 2 GHz.

Posted by: Alaric | Aug 24 2019 18:07 utc | 84

B, in response to your update:

So maybe Washington officials DO monitor this place and when they read your assessment, they basically jumped at the idea of extreme summer heat, like “Dude, this is how we need to sell it!” ;-)

The problem that I see, though: the explosives in the ammo that’s supposed to have self-ignited, those substances just don’t go off at 50 degrees Celsius. They probably won’t go off at a full hundred degrees, either. So other than a fire from some other source (organic chemicals?) already there, driving up the heat enough for the explosives to ignite, I just don’t see it happening. Not from ambient heat, anyway.

Posted by: Scotch Bingeington | Aug 24 2019 18:14 utc | 85

In a way, the US caused these explosions... by deliberately targeting the Iraqi electrical infrastructure (a war crime) in two wars and never fixing it since their occupation; plus by now trying Iran to prevent electrical power to Iraq, even though that part of the siege on Iran led Basra's population to erupt and the US to all but lose its consulate there.

Posted by: fx | Aug 24 2019 18:29 utc | 86

Here we go again,

Israel Strikes Syria, Says It Foiled Iranian Drone Attack

But perhaps that didnt occur, perhaps it was the heat again as in Iraq...damn heat.

Posted by: Zanon | Aug 24 2019 21:04 utc | 87

I thought about the earlier article (denying an attack) when I caught a YouTube video by Defense Updates that claimed that Israeli F35s fooled Russian defenses. It's definitely a weapons cheering squad but sometimes informative. I started watching the video and since it started with pro-Israel political grand-standing, I stopped. Is it possible? I guess so. If so, it's more like Israel proving they can still get away with anything.

Posted by: Curtis | Aug 24 2019 21:53 utc | 88

re tracking possibilities

According to News from Press TV the bavar 373 is equipped with ten thousand compound eyes.

As you well know, some insects have compound eyes, flies for example. Each facet monitors a quadrant of the vision partial sphere. so tracking an object entails its
moving from facet to facet to facet so the trajectory and speed of whatever is in motion
can be detected.

Since artificial compound eyes can be set up to see infrared, ultra violet, and or visual objects, it can detect and track object that are not well detected by radars.
Additionally, these compound eyes emit no radiation and do not invite anti radar munitions.

If indeed Bavar 373 has such compound eyes in several integrated locations, nothing will escape its vigilance.

With the proper software, It will track better that the best radar.

What would be interesting, indeed, would be for Iran to deploy one such system in Syria, so it can be battle tested.

Posted by: CarlD | Aug 25 2019 0:01 utc | 89

funny how i made that guess off the top of my head and then they happened to use it as a reason/excuse. and for the record (in response to other comments) i didn't think 110F+ degree temperatures would ignite ammo on their own (although given the "lowest bidder" nature of manufacturing munitions and other mass produced military gear it's somewhat possible); more that a fire - electrical, heat related, whatever - could have broken out and it was only noticed because it hit a bunch of boom. after all, countries recently bombed into the fourth world don't always have the best means of government inspection and such.

it does seem less likely when it happens multiple times in a short amount of time, however. i still think that of all the things i threw against the wall in my last comment israeli double agent(s) in the iraqi system is the one that will stick.

Posted by: the pair | Aug 25 2019 1:14 utc | 90

Thank you Laguerre (Aug 24 2019 8:44 utc | 69). I was very wrong about the date and Persian numerals and it was only by chance (and combining two errors of mine) that I ended up with a date that was almost right but still wrong :)

Arata! Thank you very much for translating the page! You doing so and sharing it makes it extremely clear for anyone interested who reads it that it has been completely misused by non-Iranian "news". I think everybody will agree with your conclusions (I certainly do) :)

And if all this wasn't enough Don Bacon makes an excellent point about how F-35 (and all such planes) are always much more visible from behind (and many other excellent points in addition to that). F-35's etc. also gain a lot of visibility (this time radar) when they open payload doors/panels for launching weapons carried internally, and even more if they carry weapons externally.

Add all of this to b's work and it seems as good as certain as one can get that b was right to begin with and that Israel and the US were lying as usual and trying to provoke and create trouble.

And again add all the other related developments in Iraq that many people point out in this thread and perhaps the real news story and conclusion becomes that Iraq has shown itself able and clever; using the opportunity to not only claim their right but also communicate very clearly what they think and put some pressure on both the US and Israel.

Because if b and people here can catch the lies then Iraq (and Iran, Russia, Syria, and so on, both together and on their own) also can, and probably knew the truth before they said anything at all :)

Posted by: Sunny Runny Burger | Aug 25 2019 4:31 utc | 91

Just heard the news that the Syrian Arab Army has liberated Hama province in north-central Syria and the town of Khan Sheykhoun along with several others was liberated as of 21 August 2019.

Posted by: Jen | Aug 25 2019 4:31 utc | 92

I want to add to CarlD's informative comment that the same general kind of technology or approach is also be able to see in x-ray if doing so is deemed worth it within whatever the constraints are. A search for "lobster space x-ray" will return many good hits and some relevant papers for anyone interested.

Posted by: Sunny Runny Burger | Aug 25 2019 5:16 utc | 93

Israel also tried to dragged Lebanon into the war too?

"Two drones destroyed over Beirut after Israeli jets attack Syria"

Posted by: Zanon | Aug 25 2019 8:14 utc | 94

I think the problem with the hot-weather theory - which I wouldn't in any way exclude, it is possible - is that all these explosions occurred over quite a small area, north and northeast of Baghdad. But the whole of Iraq is being affected by the high temperatures. The events should have been more widely spread. While, as I mentioned earlier, they occurred in areas heavily infested with Da'ish in the villages, who will be always ready to exploit the even greater inattention of guards tired of the heat. Not, of course, that it is likely that Iranian weapons for transport were being stored on sites at risk of attack by Da'ish.

Posted by: Laguerre | Aug 25 2019 10:07 utc | 95

The stupid arab states that have just got along with Israe past years. Now they bomb Iraq, Lebanon, Syria. Israel must laugh at the dumb arab states that can be fooled to do anything apparently.

Israel and UAE held two secret meetings on cooperation against Iran

Israel-Arab ties warm up after long deep freeze › world-middle-east-46075180

Posted by: Zanon | Aug 25 2019 10:20 utc | 96

@90 Curtis Well, let's think about it: if the "earlier article" you are talking about was a reference to claimed Israeli attacks inside Iraq then there are no "Russian defences" to be defeated.

After all, the RuAF is not responsible for the defense of Iraqi airspace.

If you are talking about the "defeat" of Russian radar tracking then that's pretty easy - the claim is that the Israeli jets took off from USAF bases, in which case the Russians would have simply regarded them as American aircraft.

Posted by: Yeah, Right | Aug 25 2019 10:22 utc | 97

- Did israel use F35 planes ? Those bug/fault ridden F35 ?

Posted by: Willy2 | Aug 26 2019 6:29 utc | 98

Both Iran, Iraq warned US and Israel today after the attacks and threats of attacks,

Iraqi Parliament Group Calls Alleged Israeli Strikes 'Declaration of War', Demands US Troops Exit

Iran Warns Israel of Consequences of 'Aggression Against Syria, Lebanon, Iraq'

Posted by: Zanon | Aug 26 2019 14:17 utc | 99

As I have said many times myself, Russia must act, it has the power to stop the israeli aggression, instead it will side with this regime once again by doing nothing.

Lebanese Prime Minister Asks Russian Foreign Minister to Prevent Escalation of Israel-Lebanon Row - Moscow

Posted by: Zanon | Aug 27 2019 10:31 utc | 100

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