#81

Fayafi posted:

I'm fairly convinced it was the eifher the Houthis or Iranians flexing. They really don't have much to lose - the U.S is at their doorstep and (as I think was also noted on RWN) they like to show that they will not give an inch - no spy drones, no "limited strikes", and the global oil supply is at our mercy, so don't think that once your attempts to force concessions fail that you can send the bombers in. If it were the Houthis that does explain why a Japanese and Norwegian ship were attacked - the attacks seem more indiscriminate than something the Iranians would risk. The false flag stuff is definitely not out of the question and still makes lots of sense though. The Qataris, who aren't exactly pleased with the anti-Iranian aggression seem to buy that it was a flex or Houthi attack, though they might just be going with the American flow as they are wont to do.


I could believe the first one was a flex by Iran to deter war, the second time around makes no sense and I think that was a false flag by Saudi/Israeli/Houthis who all have real interest in a war starting.

netanyahus wife plead guilty to corruption charges the same day as the second tanker attack which was also a week after he was forced to call new elections. Seems like something people would be talking about more, if something really dramatic wasn't in the news. convenient for that guy anyway!

#82
criminal conspiracies never happen because everyone's like fuh duh wuh I can't even!! please buy my book --CIA man
#83

MarxUltor posted:

Fayafi posted:

I'm fairly convinced it was the eifher the Houthis or Iranians flexing. They really don't have much to lose - the U.S is at their doorstep and (as I think was also noted on RWN) they like to show that they will not give an inch - no spy drones, no "limited strikes", and the global oil supply is at our mercy, so don't think that once your attempts to force concessions fail that you can send the bombers in. If it were the Houthis that does explain why a Japanese and Norwegian ship were attacked - the attacks seem more indiscriminate than something the Iranians would risk. The false flag stuff is definitely not out of the question and still makes lots of sense though. The Qataris, who aren't exactly pleased with the anti-Iranian aggression seem to buy that it was a flex or Houthi attack, though they might just be going with the American flow as they are wont to do.

I could believe the first one was a flex by Iran to deter war, the second time around makes no sense and I think that was a false flag by Saudi/Israeli/Houthis who all have real interest in a war starting.

netanyahus wife plead guilty to corruption charges the same day as the second tanker attack which was also a week after he was forced to call new elections. Seems like something people would be talking about more, if something really dramatic wasn't in the news. convenient for that guy anyway!



Yeah its quite possible that different parties are responsible for different attacks. Still more convinced that Iran wishes to let the world know that if they can't export their oil, and are thus starved, then their neighbors who are complicit in the blockade can't either.

#84
Just want to say that I have been learning more about the situation and am swayed by the argument Fayafi and others are putting forward.
#85
I'd really like to know how the crews of these glorified airliners feel about their provocative missions into iranian airspace
#86
Very carefully
#87

Petrol posted:

Just want to say that I have been learning more about the situation and am swayed by the argument Fayafi and others are putting forward.



It is believable that the first attack may have been the work of iran or its proxies. As someone here pointed out the targets were old, empty, low-value tankers and the damage was little enough for them to be towed away. The attacks occurred simultaneous to a houthi drone bombing of a trans-peninsula pipeline funneling gulf oil to 'safe' ports on the red sea. Together they gently but firmly indicate that the oil trade outside the strait of hormuz is vulnerable. Most importantly to me (and I haven't seen this emphasized anywhere), the western media had no prepared response, nor did the pentagon offer any immediate evidence for Iran's involvement. It was nearly 24 hours before the usual organs reported the incident, and then they were ambivalent about blame and downplayed the political repercussions. This doesn't discount a longer term strategy of tension, but it's understandable that Iran was behind it.

It's less likely that Iran was behind the second. The choice of targets makes no sense. A japanese vessel during talks with shinzo abe, and a norwegian ship belonging to the firm that made its fortune running oil for Iran during the tanker wars? The latter had its cargo of naphta set ablaze. Perhaps Iran believed japan an american lapdog, and struck its old commercial ally to say 'no exceptions?' But this time the pentagon delivered a downgraded faux-IR video of an Iranian patrol boat with eight superfluous passengers attempting the extremely dangerous task of removing an armed but unexploded limpet mine. They manage the hard part without a massacre yet leave behind a single magnetic attachment which may as well be the whole damn mine. The episode gets massive media coverage and before it leaves scope a very expensive drone incurs Iranian airspace and is rightfully shot down, yet spared its full to bursting(?) partner the p-8 poseidon. What went wrong here to cancel the limited strike?

As I see it, the MoA/magnier/war nerd thesis is that:
a. Iran finds trump's unilateral breach of the JCPOA and new sanctions intolerable legally and existentially, ie so economically devastating that they face crises up to and including starvation.
b. Therefore there can be no negotiation/deescalation without prerequisite removal of sanctions, since the passage of time only weakens Iran and the US has demonstrated its inability to honor any new agreement.
c. If trump is unwilling, then the EU/china/russia must defy the american sanctions to ensure Iran's economic future.
d. If the rest of the world will not honor its commitments under the JCPOA, then Iran has no choice but to exercise its ability to shut down the ME oil trade.

I don't agree with the flippant attitude these people assign Iran. Iran knows best of all how terrible a war would be, even if they believe it to be winnable. Moreover they have stated "if the Islamic Republic decides to stop oil flow from the Persian Gulf, it will do it publicly and there will be nothing covert about it" (pressTV).

I also don't agree with the idea that sociopathy guides bolton et al. Between Venezuela and Iran these events threaten to constrict the global supply of oil. This is a great boon to the american fracking corporations running in the red, and escalation (or maintenance) without warfare hurts american competitors more than it hurts america. However it does hurt american consumers, and if trump cares for nothing but reelection, what does he do? I won't play into the idea that trump has been cornered by his 'hawkish' posse (as MoA sometimes seems to do), but given his desire to be seen as 'winning' coupled with the above Iranian position, what does he do?

Edited by kinch ()

#88
♫ an etude in the passive voice ♫
#89
I've also seen little evidence of how badly the sanctions hurt the everyday lives of Iranians, and more importantly how they will do so in the future. There are articles about empty shops and bartering, and there are articles claiming the opposite. I presume there are vast differences between neighborhoods and cities and the countryside, and I see no reason to doubt that all this has served to unite them.
#90

kinch posted:

Petrol posted:

Just want to say that I have been learning more about the situation and am swayed by the argument Fayafi and others are putting forward.

It is believable that the first attack may have been the work of iran or its proxies. As someone here pointed out the targets were old, empty, low-value tankers and the damage was little enough for them to be towed away. The attacks occurred simultaneous to a houthi drone bombing of a trans-peninsula pipeline funneling gulf oil to 'safe' ports on the red sea. Together they gently but firmly indicate that the oil trade outside the strait of hormuz is vulnerable. Most importantly to me (and I haven't seen this emphasized anywhere), the western media had no prepared response, nor did the pentagon offer any immediate evidence for Iran's involvement. It was nearly 24 hours before the usual organs reported the incident, and then they were ambivalent about blame and downplayed the political repercussions. This doesn't discount a longer term strategy of tension, but it's understandable that Iran was behind it.

It's less likely that Iran was behind the second. The choice of targets makes no sense. A japanese vessel during talks with shinzo abe, and a norwegian ship belonging to the firm that made its fortune running oil for Iran during the tanker wars? The latter had its cargo of naphta set ablaze. Perhaps Iran believed japan an american lapdog, and struck its old commercial ally to say 'no exceptions?' But this time the pentagon delivered a downgraded faux-IR video of an Iranian patrol boat with eight superfluous passengers attempting the extremely dangerous task of removing an armed but unexploded limpet mine. They manage the hard part without a massacre yet leave behind a single magnetic attachment which may as well be the whole damn mine. The episode gets massive media coverage and before it leaves scope a very expensive drone incurs Iranian airspace and is rightfully shot down, yet spared its full to bursting(?) partner the p-8 poseidon. What went wrong here to cancel the limited strike?

As I see it, the MoA/magnier/war nerd thesis is that:
a. Iran finds trump's unilateral breach of the JCPOA and new sanctions intolerable legally and existentially, ie so economically devastating that they face crises up to and including starvation.
b. Therefore there can be no negotiation/deescalation without prerequisite removal of sanctions, since the passage of time only weakens Iran and the US has demonstrated its inability to honor any new agreement.
c. If trump is unwilling, then the EU/china/russia must defy the american sanctions to ensure Iran's economic future.
d. If the rest of the world will not honor its commitments under the JCPOA, then Iran has no choice but to exercise its ability to shut down the ME oil trade.



Makes most sense to me.

#91
The first attack was skillful, no injuries, no environmental damage, no evidence, and ships being attacked in their safe harbor is a massive embarrassment to the host nation (UAE).

The second time around, the ships left two different ports. So assuming the theory of demolition charges is correct, they probably were not attacked in harbor, so how did the weapons actually get to the boats?

Driving a small boat up to the side of a moving tanker full of methanol at night on the open sea and reaching over the side with a magnet bomb and, according to the americans, for some reason a nail gun (?), multiple times, is quite honestly, possibly the worst method to attack a ship anyone has ever thought of. Someone could see the attack boat coming from 10 miles away. Or hear it coming alongside, or the noise of a bunch of super magnets slamming into the steel hull. There is an extreme risk of the boat getting tossed around by the ships's wake and slamming into the side and sinking.

The other method I can think of would be rigging a drone to carry the limpet mine on its nose. Fly up to boat, big-ass magnets do the thing, the rest of the drone falls off as debris and sinks. Safer, complies with the witness statement that a flying object was seen. You need to be able to track moving ships at sea and hit them 4 times in the same place though. Not easy!

But why would anyone do this technique specifically? Iran doesn't need to ghetto rig flying limpet mines. Iran already has a special class of boat-bombs with their own in-built aerial propulsion systems. They're called anti-ship cruise missiles, they havve been building them for decades and burying them underground in the mountains and desert, and we all have a pretty good idea that they work as advertised. And that was a first generation model they've been improving ever since. If Iran wants to "send a message" they could throw 290 of them at the next US destroyer transiting the strait, one for each death on the Iran Air flight the US shot down. Then ask on Twitter for the ship named after reagan to go next.

So why take the risk or blow the resources to attack moving ships at sea with a wholly inappropriate weapon, except to leave evidence which looks exactly like the #1 western chickenhawk media search on wikipedia and let the ambiguity point to Iran? They don't need to play games at all. If Iran says the strait is closed it's fucking closed. One anonymous Persian-looking guy walking into Lloyds of London and telling the receptionist it's closed and everyone stops outside and waits for the americans to go first.

I could see Saudi trying to think of a way to drag the US into their Yemeni Vietnam. Dunno if they've demonstrated the skill though. I could even see the Yemenis desperate for a way to get Iran into the fight to break the siege because their whole fucking country is starving to death and the small boat method screams desperation. But if they could track and strike moving ships like that the Saudis wouldn't have a navy anymore.

The US is extremely not ready for war with Iran. If we attack now then Iran will sanitize every existing US base on that meme map and leave maybe a few well hidden or lucky navy ships. The bombers we send may not even have runways to land on. Thousands of dead Troops and the worst military defeat in history occuring hours after the first attack is not going to get trump reelected and someone would probably mention that to him. So USA trying to goad Iran into it right now makes no sense except from the perspective of evangelical mythology of apocalyptic war involving Israel to bring the end times. And there are certainly people in high places that go for that shit but I dont think any have the juice to pull this off without going through someone at some level who knows things.

So who has good drone tech and the ability to track and strike ships at sea and the callous disregard for human life to start a war and the false confidence that the US could win and the misplaced faith in their own defensive systems necessary to maintain the foolhardy belief that they could weather such a war without suffering major harm and domestic political strife and weak leaders who might find some personal salvation in the jingoism attached to a good ol mideast war?

The UK, obviously.

But also, and more likely in this case, Israel.
#92

MarxUltor posted:

But why would anyone do this technique specifically? Iran doesn't need to ghetto rig flying limpet mines. Iran already has a special class of boat-bombs with their own in-built aerial propulsion systems. They're called anti-ship cruise missiles, they havve been building them for decades and burying them underground in the mountains and desert, and we all have a pretty good idea that they work as advertised. And that was a first generation model they've been improving ever since. If Iran wants to "send a message" they could throw 290 of them at the next US destroyer transiting the strait, one for each death on the Iran Air flight the US shot down. Then ask on Twitter for the ship named after reagan to go next.



it would make more sense to make it look like a terrorist attack for plausible deniability while menacing tho

#93
if we regard first sabotage as iran signalling their ability to disrupt oil supply then today's gibraltar operation, in which the brits detained an iranian tanker presumably delivering oil to syria, could be seen as response signalling that they monitor iran's dark exports and can/will blockade them. spain's foreign minister has stated the operation was at behest of the us but allowed it to continue under the logic that it was only enforcing eu sanctions on syria. spanish government will still make a formal complaint to uk as it considers those waters to be national territory, but it will likely amount to less of a diplomatic incident than the nuclear submarines that regularly dock at the island.
#94
#95
still lolling at that. "so iran, we were uhh thinking, do you mind if we just bomb you a little bit? it would really help us out. no big deal right"
#96
USA cant even bomb empty beach. owned.
#97
they should delegate beach-bombing to israelis given that s their expertise
#98
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/jul/08/iran-has-enriched-uranium-past-key-limit-iaea-confirms

https://www.dw.com/en/iran-no-more-deadlines-to-save-nuclear-deal/a-49508692

#99
iran, first country to unwillingly develop nuclear weapons out of spite
#100
i hereby give donald john trump permission to bomb england
#101
iran has counterseized a random tanker. the best part is how an entire tanker went missing and nobody knew what had happened to it for a few days



https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/jul/18/iran-says-it-has-seized-foreign-oil-tanker-in-gulf
#102
My Qatari source - just some dude who does FP ana)ysis for an outlet there, and knows some diplomats who are in the know - says that all this stuff is just for show. Iran and the US are already negotiating, with Qatar as mediator. Iran is happy to make an oil deal with U.S companies - the only companies the U.S can't bully into fleeing the country - and want their tech and whatnot. Basically they're fine with a deal approaching the lucrative ones the Gulf states get, and the U.S could thus keep out Russia, China amd Europe. But they are at an impasse over the U.S' second demand - for Iran to get rid of its long range missiles that have the capability to strike Israel. The yelling about nukes is a pretext - the Trump admin has zero worries about that and do believe the IAEA reports. The hullaballoo about it is for the Israelis and Trumps anti-Obama swine base. In their view, Trump only cares about money, he doesn't honestly care too much about Israel's security. In fact, it may be possible that they go ahead with a deal without tryin too hard too force concessions on Iran's missile program, so they can use it to blackmail Saudi and Israel.

Edited by Fayafi ()

#103
if iran is fine with being compradorized like that (which i dont doubt that much, dont get me wrong) why would they care about israel enough to want to be able to strike them from such a long distance? sadat did the same and ditched the anti-israel stuff quite fast