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Tulsi Gabbard shoots straight on the Middle East – like a soldier should

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Most of the Democrat “leaders” and presidential candidates on offer of late are useful for little more than comedy television, if one considers hyper-political snipery (all done with proper parliamentary procedures) as comedy. It may be so, but we often find that some antacids are probably necessary after watching Jerrold Nadler’s Incredibly Contrived Compleat Impeachment Fairy Tale. And, yes, my sarcasm is showing. But Tulsi Gabbard is a completely different story. She found favor with Tucker Carlson on Fox, and she has been on with Fox time and again to talk about very significant matters regarding Middle East policy, and she appears to be at least somewhat correct. She was correct enough to chagrin her interviewer in this video:

Tulsi drew two extremely significant points, one which makes a lot of sense and one which smacks of liberal progressivism. The sensible one is is that the notion that the US should commit its forces to yet another Middle East war, this one with Iran, is absolutely correct.

While it is extremely unlikely that her interpretation of President Trump’s tweet is accurate, here is what she actually reacted to. Read for yourself:

Saudi Arabia oil supply was attacked. There is reason to believe that we know the culprit, are locked and loaded depending on verification, but are waiting to hear from the Kingdom as to who they believe was the cause of this attack, and under what terms we would proceed!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 15, 2019

Representative Gabbard took this language to mean that Mr. Trump was awaiting marching orders from the Saudi leadership – admittedly, an easy conclusion to jump to (parental advisory here, for Rep Gabbard does not mince words):

.@realDonaldTrump

Trump awaits instructions from his Saudi masters. Having our country act as Saudi Arabia’s bitch is not “America First.” https://t.co/kJOCpqwaQS

— Tulsi Gabbard (@TulsiGabbard) September 16, 2019

The lack of action on the part of the US to date would seem to indicate that President Trump is actually sticking to his own outlook – that foreign intervention is not the desirable path. This can be expected to continue.

However, Rep. Gabbard certainly hit a true point here, reinforced actually by President Trump’s dismissal of John Bolton from the Security Adviser post.

Committing US forces to fight Iran on Saudi Arabia’s behalf is a terrible idea. Once again, Iran, whether by actual deed or implied complicity, is trying to force the US into a position of isolation from the rest of the world because the US alone withdrew from the “Iran deal” known as the JCPoA.

It remains virtually unstated by the mainstream press of the world that in so doing, Iran has actually broken the deal it made with all the signatories of the JCPoA by enriching uranium in excess of the agreed to amounts this year.

(Author’s note: Some of our readers noted the possibility that Iran’s increase in enriched uranium production is actually in line with the “fine print” of the JCPoA, technically allowing the country to increase its allowance in the event that one of the signatories leaves the deal. Preliminary research into this shows no such provision, but we are checking further into this. – SH)

In this, one has to give credit to the Iranian government for playing the liberal press very intelligently. They understand that most of the media world despises President Trump for taking the United States off the globalist course. This makes it even possible for Iran to break its own committment to the deal its government howls about the US leaving, and no other powers seem to be speaking to Iran to tell them that at the very least, “two wrongs do not make a right.”

This point is very easily lost, and further the implication that “if only the US would return to the JCPoA, then Iran would stop its own actions.” That is nothing less than appeasement and it is simply amazing how easily this part of the issue is ignored.

This is where Representative Gabbard also has it wrong in her assumption that the US re-joining the JCPoA and lifting its sanctions against that country would actually lead to Iran curtailing its actions. (This is the absurdity of progressivist ideology at work, and, Tulsi is a Democrat.)

However, Neil Cavuto tried to corner Rep. Gabbard politically and he unfortunately confirmed even Fox’s role as a purveyor of its own type of media bias, rather than a successful and honest analysis of the problem.

Cavuto tried to play Gabbard’s sensibilities in this issue to imply that she trusts Iran (“enemy”) more than Saudi Arabia (“friend”). This exchange begins at 6:34 and is extremely important to watch to taken in the mechanics of how this worked. It is further important to note that Rep Gabbard was unflappable and her response to this questioning was spot on right:

Tusli Gabbard here states that her concern is for the United States of America.

How odd! That is actually pretty much the same as the stance the President takes. How would going into a military conflict with Iran do anything BUT lead to the needless sacrifice of American forces, both in lives and equipment, against a country that is not a threat to the United States?

For all of Iran’s posturing, this is the truth. They pose no threat to the United States unless one wants to call flag-burning a threat. To do so does seem to be a longshot. Iran, like North Korea before it, knows that making a big noise is one thing, but to actually throw down and commit itself to war with the US is another. There is no way its main ally, Russia, or its main economic partner, China, would assent to this. While their behavior with regard to the JCPoA reveals the Iranian government’s own contempt for the world community, they are far from being in a position to put their own military into use to force the world to do anything.

However, this is inconvenient to the American / Western media narrative, which finds it easier to portray Iran as the enemy, even though, amazingly, the brutal regime of Saudi Arabia, the most repressive Islamic regime on the planet, is our “buddy” by comparison.

Tulsi deserves a lot of credit for her steadfastness in this interview. She knows the media game pretty well, but as a soldier she remains a realist, though there is certainly an argument to say that the idea that all this will go away if only the US rejoins the JCPoA, is just wrong.

If Saudi Arabia deems Iran to be responsible for the attack on its oilfields, it should be the decision of the Saudis to go themselves and fight it out with Iran.

Not the United States, not under any conditions.

Iran is not a threat to the US. It is not even clear if the US intelligence is correct in assessing Iran as the culprit behind the Houthi attack on the Aramco facilities this week. To his credit, Neil Cavuto does acknowledge this gigantic “if this is true.”

Iran is being held responsible by Western intel for the attack on Aramco’s fields, shown here burning.
Mohammed bin Salman, Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia.

A lot is changing in the American geopolitical view, notably with President Trump as the most significant leader in this. He and Gabbard are really not that far off ideologically in terms of how to solve this problem. President Trump has repeatedly expressed his willingness to talk to the Iranian leadership to solve the problems. Iran has consistently refused to do this.

Tulsi does not directly state this, but it is easy to conclude that Iran justifies its present behavior because of the reportedly extreme economic sanctions the US has placed in force against that country. However, this claim begins to look dubious in light of reports that Iran and China are entering very lucrative trade deals. In future articles examining this subject I hope to have interview with Iranians in-country who can directly share their own experiences with all of this. The rhetoric about Iran may be far different from what life is actually like there, and it seems that the best way to represent Iran’s point of view is to ask people who live there and get it.

The sad state of the American media, in this case including Fox, who wish to promote a political ideology rather than give raw facts and pragmatic analysis, has been a disaster for the US in terms of its foreign policy actions. Rush Limbaugh often states that the Democrat party follows the dictates of the mainstream media. This seems to be true. But it is also true that the ideological conservative politicians and policy makers in the US and Fox News often seem to also present a narrative in lockstep.

Both sides are wrong in doing this. While opinion is important, we have for years elevated opinion writing to the level of almost religious ideology, and this is very bad when the ideology cannot accept the actual situation as it stands.

Tulsi Gabbard deserves a lot of credit for blowing that apart in this interview. This is not the first time she has done this, either. Her Middle East views have a lot of good thinking behind them – not 100 percent, but thankfully, like President Trump, she points out that what is needed for American citizens to be safe and secure within their own borders is not for American troops to act as World Police sent to all points of the empire. It also does seem that some among the American journalists, notably Fox News’ Tucker Carlson and Laura Ingraham now, bit-by-bit, are slowly disentangling themselves from reporting news in such a way as to support very limited scopes of ideology.

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Daniel Christof

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