Tag: Iran

A Tale of 3 Press Conferences

 

POTUS DIMEFILIf you watch and listen to three sets of statements and answers by our current administration, you will get an interesting picture of our actual current policy. The first is by President Trump, answering a reporter’s off-topic question when he signed two executive orders on transparency in federal guidance and enforcement (a serious push back on the growth of an unaccountable fourth branch of government in the administrative state). The second is a Pentagon briefing on the deployment of Patriot Air Defense/Anti Missile units and two Air Force fighter squadrons to Saudi Arabia, in which both this action and comments on Syria are interesting. The third is a White House press corps briefing by Secretary of the Treasury Steve Mnuchin.

President Trump has laid out three possible courses of action in the longstanding conflict between Turkey and those Kurds living in eastern Turkey and across the border in Syria. As has been explained repeatedly elsewhere, these are not the same Kurds abandoned by George H.W. Bush and now supported in northern Iraq by President Trump. These are different groups with different politics.

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Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America are glad to see France, Germany, and the UK conclude that Iran attacked Saudi Arabia earlier this month and that there is no other plausible explanation. They also groan over the political circus about to begin as House Democrats appear to be moving en […]

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Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America enjoy watching some Democrats fret that Beto O’Rourke’s vow to take everyone’s AR-15 and AK-47 might convince voters that Democrats are after our guns. They also shudder as Iranian-funded and armed rebels in Yemen attack Saudi oil production facilities, leading to much higher tensions […]

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The Saudi-Iranian Conflict Grows

 

Paul D. Miller is a Middle East expert paying close attention to the growing tensions between Iran and Saudi Arabia. On Monday, he wrote a Twitter thread explaining the situation. Here it is in story form:

As you read all the hot takes about the attacks on Saudi Arabia’s oil infrastructure and the U.S.’s purported plans to respond, here are some things to keep in mind:

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After reading today about the drone strike yesterday on Saudi Arabia that halved its oil output, the first thing I thought of was the damage it could do to the US economy. The second was the consequences of the first for the president, a pillar of whose reelection argument is the performance of the US […]

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Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America are glad to see Republicans hold on to a pair of North Carolina congressional seats, including one that Democrats were hoping would be a harbinger of 2020. They also shudder as Iranian President Hassan Rouhani cheers the exit of National Security Adviser John Bolton […]

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A Tale of Three Nukes

 

Maps of Ukraine, Libya, North KoreaI recently urged “Don’t Say You Want a Revolution,” reviewing the sad and terrible consequences of American presidents talking up “regime change” or “revolution” in other countries. As the people of 1956 Hungary and 1991 Iraq discovered, the United States does not back up such talk with our own blood and treasure, even when local people put their own fortunes, sacred honor, and lives on the line. Now let us shift perspective, from the people to the governing elite.

What lessons should Kim Jong-Un draw from recent history? Does U.S. policy, as it has actually played out, cut against North Korean denuclearization? What of the Khomeinist regime in Iran? Consider Libya and Ukraine as cautionary tales for other governments considering what to do with their own weapons of mass destruction (WMD) programs.

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Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of National Review discuss the brewing Democratic civil war with Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez choosing to play the race card on Nancy Pelosi. They react to Iran’s failed attempt to storm a British tanker and the escalating situation in the Middle East. And they chuckle at Kentucky Democratic Senate […]

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Jim Geraghty of National Review and guest host Gregory Knapp praise White House Press Secretary Stephanie Grisham’s actions to protect the press from North Korean interference. They cover the announcement from Iran that they have resumed enriching uranium. And they discuss the Democratic Party’s sudden embrace of busing to resolve racial disparities.   More

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Andrew McCarthy is wrong this time. He calls not only for a policy of regime change but also for President Trump to call for “regime change” in Iran. McCarthy should pay closer attention to the history of American presidents talking up “liberation” or regime change. Consider both President Eisenhower and President George H.W. Bush, and […]

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President Trump Imposes New Sanctions on Iran

 

President trump signed an executive order yesterday to implement new sanctions on Iran. The order comes after Iran has attacked several oil tankers as well as an unmanned U.S. drone, all within international waters.

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Trumping Middle East Hands: Iran [Updated]

 

Start from the position that the Iranian people are hostages in their own country to a regime based on an idea, perhaps an ideology, concocted in the 1970s and propounded clearly only after Khomeini’s faction had control in the Iranian Revolution of 1979. Consider that there has been popular unrest against the regime. Factor in that the rulers are savvy and ruthless, with an elite military force keeping the regular military and the populace in check, while extending regime influence regionally and globally. The Khomeinists seem to have a strong hand, with some high cards, so how do we set about trumping their hand? Moving towards answers that are feasible takes more than hand-waving and posturing.

The U.S. military has long recognized that it was only one instrument in Uncle Sam’s tool belt, and that military strategy needed to be integrated with plans and actions by the rest of the government. This became called a “whole of government” approach. For many years, military officers, in their advanced schooling, were instructed in consideration of four “instruments of national power:” Diplomacy, Information, Military, and Economy (DIME).

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Middle East Players: Iran

 

The latest news about “Iran” comes across as more irritation from a region that seems to always be in conflict. Moreover, the news and commentary tend to be divorced from actual history, allowing vague hand-waving, finger-pointing, and shoulder-shrugging. What follows is an attempt at a bit more definite hand-waving over the map, placing Iran briefly in their own historic context, touching on Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and Turkey as the other centers of power over the centuries.

It is not “those people.” It is not “that place.” It is not even “Islam.” Don’t take my word for it:

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Rob Long of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America discuss President Trump’s last-minute decision to hold off on striking Iran. They also cover the intensifying Democratic presidential campaign, as Joe Biden and Cory Booker scuffle over race and Bernie Sanders explains why he’s now neck-and-neck with Elizabeth Warren in the polls. And they […]

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Rob Long of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America are pleasantly surprised to see actual consequences for former Democratic staffer Jackson Cosko over his doxing of Republican senators during the Kavanaugh confirmation hearings. In addition, Cosko’s alleged collaborator is now facing charges as well. They also react to Iran shooting down a U.S. […]

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David French of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America discuss Hong Kong hitting pause on an extradition agreement with the Chinese government following massive protests. They also examine the Supreme Court’s approach to Christian vendors vs. the LGBT agenda. They consider what comes next after Iran’s decision to exceed the low-grade uranium limit […]

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Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America discuss Beto O’Rourke and other Democratic presidential candidates attacking Joe Biden for his age and ties to the Obama administration. They also discuss the attack on two oil tankers in the Persian Gulf as tensions escalate. And they get a good laugh as CNN’s […]

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Trump Admin Blames Iran for Oil Tanker Attacks in Gulf

 

Two oil tankers were attacked Thursday near the Strait of Hormuz amid escalating tensions in the region. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has blamed Iran for the attacks, as he did with attacks on four tankers last month near a United Arab Emirates.

“The assessment of the United States government that the Islamic Republic of Iran is responsible for the attacks that occurred in the gulf of Oman today,” Pompeo said. “This assessment is based on intelligence, the weapons used, the level of expertise needed to execute the operation, recent similar Iranian attacks on shipping and the fact that no proxy group operating in the area has the resources and proficiency to act with such a high degree of sophistication.”

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Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America react to the U.S. shifting military resources to the Middle East to address an apparent threat against American forces by Iran. They’re also getting tired of Democrats refusing to accept the results of elections they obviously didn’t win, as Sen. Kamala Harris tells the […]

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Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America applaud the Trump Administration for finally designating the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps a “foreign terrorist organization” after the group has for years sponsored and participated in terrorism throughout the Middle East. They also worry that the revolving door of cabinet officials in the Trump […]

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