Yesterday’s drone strike in Iraq by the US against a top Iranian military commander won’t lead to war. It is war. More precisely, it is an escalation of the US war on Iran that started within months of Trump’s inauguration.
In his prepared remarks today, Trump said, “We took action last night to stop a war. We did not take action to start a war.” That’s a lie. Last night’s action was a ramping-up of an ongoing war.
While everybody has been focused on — and bemoaning — the starkly partisan nature of the continuing impeachment saga, a stunning display of broad bipartisanship has just taken place in the House. It hardly made a dent in the wall-to-wall impeachment coverage. That’s too bad, because the recent bipartisan action in question here is an outrage.
I’m talking about the passage last Wednesday of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), the massive legislation that funds all things military. This year’s Pentagon funding bill passed the House with a lopsided 377-48 vote (only 41 Democrats voted against). You can’t get much more bipartisan than that. And that’s a huge problem, especially because the military spending bill always garners such bipartisan support.
A little over a week ago, when the first Navy ships were deployed toward Iran, I opined that it was a case of vacant saber-rattling, a bit of wag-the-dog distraction to force Trump’s ever-deepening legal troubles out of the headlines. (Generals, prepare to wag the dog 5/7/19)
It seems I may have been right. So far. Over the last couple of days, Trump has clearly tried to turn down the heat. As tensions rose rapidly, Trump informed his Acting Defense Secretary that he did not want a war with Iran. On Thursday, a reporter asked Trump if the US was going to war. “I hope not,” was his response. And today he continued his blathering. “What they should be doing is calling me up, sitting down. We can make a deal, a fair deal,” said the man who ripped up a fair deal we already had with Iran, a deal which had fulfilled its promise.Continue reading “Behind the bombast, we’re already at war with Iran”→