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“Air Defense Systems Fail All the Time”: Pompeo’s Visit To Saudi Arabia Turned Into Theater Of Absurd


"Air Defense Systems Fail All the Time": Pompeo's Visit To Saudi Arabia Turned Into Theater Of Absurd

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On September 18th, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said that it was just normal for the Patriot missile defense system to fail in repelling the recent drone attack on Saudi Arabia’s oil infrastructure.

“Look, anytime – we’ve seen air defense systems all around the world have mixed success.  Some of the finest in the world don’t always pick things up. We want to work to make sure that infrastructure and resources are put in place such that attacks like this would be less successful than this one appears to have been.  That’s certainly the case.”

He actually tried to paint the complete failure as something successful. He then, without being asked, moved on to defend the US move to leave the Iran Nuclear Deal, saying that if it didn’t Iran would’ve had missiles that could do that much earlier, and not 55 weeks from “now.”

“Fifty-five weeks from now, the whole world can sell exactly these missile systems, conventional missile systems to the Iranian Government unencumbered by any sanctions under the – 55 weeks, 55 weeks from now. Does anybody think that that was a genius idea to allow them to have the whole world be able to actually sell them missile systems?  They’d have more complex ones but for the sanctions we put in place that have prevented them from getting access to money, most importantly, but also parts, spare parts, information technology – all the things that go into building out production-level threats to the world.”

Of course, any other scenario than Iran being to blame is also completely unacceptable, Pompeo simply follows the narrative, any other reality is disregarded. After all, you can’t believe what Yemen’s Houthis (Ansar Allah) say.

“You say, “the Houthis said,” you should say, “the well-known, frequently lying Houthis have said the following.” This is important, because you ought not report them as if these are truth-tellers, as if these are people who aren’t completely under the boot of the Iranians, and who would not at the direction of the Iranians lay claim to attacks which they did not engage in, which clearly was the case here. So there you go.  Whenever you say “Houthis,” you should begin with “the well-known, frequently-known-to-lie Houthis.”  And then you can write whatever it is they say.  And you would have — that would be good reporting.”

Thank god Pompeo and Co. have never been known to lie.

Naturally, the questioning also went towards the way of how the Saudi-led coalition’s war in Yemen would come to an end. Pompeo’s answer had absolutely nothing in relation to the question he was asked:

“I know you care deeply about that, good reporting.  Let me just try and close out.  So we also know that these are systems that the Iranians have not deployed anyplace else, that they have not deployed outside of their country, to the best of our knowledge.  We’ve not seen them deploy these types of UAV systems with the kinds of ranges and capabilities, nor have we seen them place these missiles where they could have done it.  We’ve seen no evidence that it came from Iraq.  It could well have traveled over Kuwait.  We’ve not seen that either.”

He praised the reporting, then commented on something separate.

He further claimed that Saudi Arabian citizens and also Americans who are in the Kingdom were at risk by the attack on oil infrastructure, despite there being not a single person harmed in it. Possibly, but unlikely, Iran has devised some sort of state-of-the-art UAV that can identify specifically US citizens or some sort of American-seeking missile.

And his attempts to praise the Patriot missile by saying that other systems also sometimes fail is also expected. But, of course, no mention is made that between 1999 and 2018, the US had repeatedly used unrealistic decoys that misrepresent the performance of its systems, making it appear much more capable than they actually are. This was presented in a report by the Union of Concerned Scientists [pdf].

Furthermore, the Kingdom and the US would like to present it as if the attack on the oil infrastructure is a separate incident, but the truth is that Ansar Allah has repeatedly attacked military parades, as well as other oil facilities throughout the war, despite Saudi Arabian defense systems being specifically pointed in Ansar Allah’s direction.

And going back to the question of the war ending, even the Sudanese children soldiers that the Saudi-led coalition used against the Houthis said it.

“If it weren’t for us the Houthis would’ve captured Riyadh by now.”

Essentially Saudi Arabia lost war in Yemen.The only reason Ansar Allah hasn’t completely defeated the Saudi-led intervention is its limited arsenal.

This is where a reason to justify the US completely entering the conflict needs to be created.




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