Patrick J. Buchanan: Who Wants War with Iran — and Why?

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Written by Patrick J. Buchanan; Originally appeared at buchanan.org

In the run-up to Christmas, President Donald Trump has been the beneficiary of some surprisingly good news and glad tidings.

Sunday, Vladimir Putin called to thank him and the CIA for providing Russia critical information that helped abort an ISIS plot to massacre visitors to Kazan Cathedral in St. Petersburg.

Monday found polls showing Trump at his highest in months. Stocks soared 200 points at the opening bell in anticipation of pre-Christmas passage of the Republican tax bill. The Dow has added a record 5,000 points in Trump’s first year.

And the Russiagate investigation may have busted an axle. Though yet unproven, charges are being made that Robert Mueller’s sleuths gained access to Trump transition emails illicitly.

This could imperil prosecutions by Mueller’s team, already under a cloud for proven malice toward the president.

Recall: Daniel Ellsberg, who delivered the Pentagon Papers to The New York Times, walked free when it was learned that the White House “Plumbers” had burgled his psychiatrist’s office.

With things going Trump’s way, one must ask:

What was U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley doing last week at what looked like a prewar briefing at Joint Base Anacostia-Bolling in D.C.?

Looming behind Haley was part of what was said to be an Iranian missile fired at King Khalid International Airport in Riyadh.

Though the rocket had Iranian markings, it was not launched from Iran, or by Iranians. Houthi rebels, for two years victims of a savage war waged by the Saudis — using U.S.-made planes, missiles, bombs and drones — say they fired it at the Riyadh airport in retaliation for what the Saudis have done to their people and country.

If so, it was a legitimate act of war.

Indeed, so great is the Yemeni civilian suffering from a lack of food and medicine, and from malnutrition and disease, Trump himself has told the Saudis to ease up on their air, sea, and land blockades.

As there is no evidence as to when the Houthis acquired the missile, or where, the question arises: What was Haley’s motive in indicting Iran? Was this part of a new propaganda campaign to drum up support for America’s next big Mideast war?

There are reasons to think so.

Haley went on: “It’s hard to find a conflict or a terrorist group in the Middle East that does not have Iran’s fingerprints all over it.”

But Iran is Shiite, while al-Qaida, which brought down the twin towers, aided by 15 Saudi nationals, is Sunni. So, too, are ISIS, Boko Haram in Nigeria, al-Shabab in Somalia and Islamic Jihad. Most Mideast terrorist groups are Sunni, not Shiite.

As for these Mideast “conflicts,” which did Iran start?

We started the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. NATO started the war in Libya. The U.S. helped trigger the horrific Syrian civil war by arming “rebels.” Only when President Bashar Assad looked like he was about to fall did Russia and Iran intervene on his side.

As for the “Shiite crescent,” from Tehran to Bagdad to Damascus to Beirut, who created it?

Under Saddam Hussein, Iraq was Sunni dominated. It was the Americans who overthrew him and brought Shiite power to Baghdad.

In Syria, it was U.S.- and Sunni-backed “rebels,” allied at times with al-Qaida, who drew Iran and the Shiite militias in to save Assad.

And the Israelis called the Shiite Hezbollah movement into being by invading and occupying South Lebanon in 1982. As Yitzhak Rabin ruefully said, “We let the Shia genie out of the bottle.”

Are we now to fight a new Mideast war against a larger enemy than any of the others we have fought, to clean up the bloody mess we made of the region by our previous military interventions?

Before we march, with Haley as head cheerleader, Trump should consider the likely consequences for his country, the Middle East, and his presidency.

A war in the Persian Gulf would send oil prices soaring, and stock markets plummeting, even as it would split us off from our major allies in Europe and Asia. The Airbus-Boeing deal to sell Iran 300 commercial aircraft would be dead.

While the U.S. would prevail in an air, naval and missile war, where would the troops come from to march to Tehran to “democratize” that nation? Do we think a bloodied revanchist Iran would be easier to deal with than the one with which John Kerry negotiated a nuclear deal?

Would Hezbollah go after U.S. soft targets in Beirut? Would Iraqi Shiite militias go after Americans in the Green Zone? Would the Shiite majority in Bahrain and the oil-rich northeast of Saudi Arabia rise up and rebel?

And who would our great fighting Arab ally be?

Jared Kushner’s new friend: a 32-year-old Saudi prince who has become famous for putting down $500 million each for a chateau near Versailles, a yacht on the Riviera, and a painting by Leonardo da Vinci.

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  • Sadde

    I thought the questions in the title (who and why) would be answered in the article.

    • Barba_Papa

      Sometimes its better to let the reader make up its own mind, rather then spell it out for him. And run the risk of being accused of being something unsavory that would drown out the message.

      • Sadde

        NO

    • zman

      Buchanan is a member of the club. There will be NO truth forthcoming…only rehashing of where we are at this moment and No real truth as to how we got here. The finger pointing would surely lead to Israel and that is a big No No. This is only a political tactic to make him look good…maybe for a run at the WH in ’20? This POS is about as trust-able as Erdogan. Look at his remarks on the great Repug tax cuts….SOS.

  • Barba_Papa

    I fully agree with this article. But I think there are a few major factors playing against war against Iran:

    – There is no casus belli. A few missiles launched against Saudi Arabia? Nobody in the West cares other then the politicians who are bought by the Saudis. In fact most people dislike the Saudis, knowing full well how backwards they are. There was no casus belli against Iraq either. The whole WMD case was considered by many to be almost non-existant even before the war. The only reason Bush Jr. was able to push that war was because of 9-11. Without 9-11 I’m willing to bet heavily that Saddam would still be in power. Without 9-11 the case for war against Iran is even thinner then the case for war against Iraq was.

    – We’ve just come out of a major recession, caused by our friends in the banking world. Nobody is interested in another war that will cause another major recession. People want to spend money again and have nice things again, not cue up at the unemployment office again because some dick in a wig wants to go to war with Iran.

    – Americans are fed up with war. There’s a reason no Western country deployed actual ground combat troops to fight ISIS. After the Iraq and Afghanistan wars people are just fed up with war. They’ll tolerate those small brush wars that are mostly off the public radar. US ‘advisors in some far away forgotten African country, drone that strike weddings in Shitholistan, relatively low key support for Kurds and the Iraqi army fighting ISIS. But another major war? No, nobody has the stomach for that again.

    – There is no credibility any more for ‘presentations at the UN’. Colin Powell has earned eternal scorn on what used to be a pretty impressive career up till then by making that famous presentations. Even the whole Russia Gate is only receiving lukewarm reception because nobody trusts intelligence agencies any more. Trust us, no longer works. The only reason Russia Gate is not laughed out on full is because many on the left side of the spectrum still can’t come to terms with Trump being the president. Their cognitive dissonance is that great that to them the whole ‘Russia did it’ argument is like a life preserver thrown to them in a wild ocean. A way to make sense of the world.

  • Joe

    It really beats me how the Iranians even dare to buy US Boeing planes. When the crunch comes, they deserve it.

    Anyway my take is that US and ISrarl ard trying real hard to get International support ho make life tough to Iran. Attack they have no capabilities, so need excuses to sanction Iran again.

    • Bernardo Morais

      Come on, they are fighting really hard internally to be more “world open”, they made a nuclear deal with US, the most valueable trust gift that one iranian leadership could give.

      Now the trust is fucking over. No deal with americans.

      This should be a message to whole world. The Americans will use everything they have in your country against you, if it is the case.

  • zman

    It’s too bad Buchanan didn’t have this mindset when he was running for the oval office. His questions about our doings and consequences in the ME are on point, even as he perpetuates the 9/11 myth. This is just more theatre from one of the elite. His article means nothing, only serving to create an atmosphere of false honesty. His points are already known by most, ignorance imbued by the MSM is the only casualty. Does he really want to make clear where we are as a country and why we’re here? No. He has shown what the pit falls are, supposed mistakes (hah), but is pointing no fingers as to what the real motivation is. If he did, they’d throw him out of the club.

    • wwinsti

      “… false honesty”

      Love it.
      Upvoted.

  • Serious

    I explain why USA wants to attack Iran.

    1 – Iran doesn’t buy the WW2 conspiracy. Ahmadinejad even made a worldwide conference about it.
    2 – Iran doesn’t buy the 9/11 conspiracy. Ahmadinejad talked a lot about it at the UN. He was the only one with balls.

    So, the main reason that USA want to destroy IRAN is freedom of thinking.

  • Don Machiavelli
    • Don Machiavelli

      Thing is that USA politicians are doing the same to Iran deal as they did to the deal with North Korea in 2005.

      First they signed the deal and then they come up with idea of changing it and imposing their will on it. Iran will eventually do as North Korea did in 2005 – they will say ” *uck you, we do not play this game ” and for good reason.

      Problem is the lack of healthy common sense among worlds population, hence current sanctions imposed on North even tho everyone is perfectly aware that it’s the USA who made problems by breaking the law.

  • Tommy Jensen

    Mongolia is another terrorist country that deserves the attention of Nikki Haley and CIA. Mongolia has threaten to take down USA from within by secret terrorist proxies and false flag attacks.
    A few bombs in a show of force would show Mongolia that US means business when we say war on terrorists.

  • Real Anti-Racist Action

    War in Iran only benefits global Jews. Just as war in Syria only benefits Jews. Just like war in Germany only benefited Jew’s. And on and on.
    https://holodomorinfo.com/

  • Carol Davidek-Waller

    All good points BUT NATO started the war in Libya under the direction of ‘we came, we saw. he died’ US SOS Hillary Clinton.
    An invasion of foreign fighters supported by unfriendly ME and western powers into Syria can hardly be called a ‘civil war’.
    According to accounts I read, there was some civil unrest prior the invasion, in part goaded on by CIA ops. Assad was willing to make necessary reforms but never had the chance before the western meme ‘ Assad must go’ took over and erased whatever domestic concerns the Syrian people had.
    Establishing an extremist government of thugs, crooks and head choppers, can hardly be called democratization.