It’s a sad state of affairs that I will believe literally anybody over Trump. The latest? Trump claimed on Thursday that the U.S. military downed an Iranian drone in the Strait of Hormuz. Why would he lie about that? But, I think he did lie, for Iran denies that it happened, and has even released video they say proves that it was a lie. If this had happened three years ago, under President Obama, I would never have questioned it, but whatever Trump says, I find there is usually at least a partial lie.
Why would Iran lie? Tensions are high between the U.S. and Iran, and Iran would almost certainly be hopping mad and making threats if we had shot down one of their little boys’ toys. (Needless to say, I have little respect for the use of drones). But I question the reason behind Trump’s lie, for undoubtedly there is an underlying, likely malicious reason. You may recall that Iran did shoot down one of our drones last month. Trump claimed it was in international airspace, but it turned out it was, in fact, in Iranian airspace and was spying on Iran.
Iranian leadership have frequently mocked Trump, and we all know that is the one thing that he cannot stand. Back in May 2018, the speaker of the Iranian parliament, Ali Larijani, said Trump “does not have the mental capacity to deal with issues,” and added that he “only understands the language of force.” All of which is true, but surely got under Trump’s thin skin.
Ever since, there has been a back-and-forth poking by both parties, and Trump has at times seemed determined to plunge the U.S. into a war with Iran that nobody … nobody in this nation wants. For the most part, Trump is filled with bluster and a sense that he is the all-important player in this game-that-is-not-a-game, while Iran’s leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, taunts back, but seems to be finding humour in it all.
So, why is Trump trying so hard to provoke Iran, and why did he lie about shooting down the drone? I don’t know the answers but have a few thoughts on the topic.
First, at the beginning of his term, Trump unconscionably withdrew the U.S. from the Iran nuclear agreement with no reason, for even our own intelligence community agreed that Iran was upholding their end of the deal. But … it was a deal that had been signed by President Obama, and that was the only reason Trump was so insistent on withdrawing. He demanded that our European allies also withdraw, and when they didn’t, when they worked collectively to try to salvage the deal even without the help of the U.S., Trump made threats, as he is wont to do. When our allies didn’t give in to his threats, but largely ignored him and continued trying to preserve the deal for the sake of world peace, he got even angrier and imposed sanctions on Iran.
Last month, then, two oil tankers, one of Japanese registry, the other Norwegian, were attacked in the Gulf of Oman. Trump & Co. claimed to have video footage showing that Iran was behind the attacks, but the footage was fuzzy and really showed nothing of value. Plus, the crew of one of the tankers stated emphatically that it was not Iran. More lies on the part of Trump, Bolton, and Pompeo. Iran denied culpability and said that Trump was spreading disinformation and warmongering.
Then they shot down our spy drone that was in their airspace, and now Trump claims, sans evidence, to have shot down their drone. WHY???
A few possibilities come to mind …
First, the red herring theory. Trump is coming under a great deal of fire from the public lately … not his base, of course, but the majority of us … for a number of things:
- Conditions at the detention camps where children are being held in captivity, separated from their parents, denied such essentials as medical care, soap, toothbrushes, beds, blankets
- His outrageously expensive and pointless, not to mention tasteless and insulting parade and “celebration” on July 4th that nearly bankrupted the city of Washington, D.C., and cost the taxpayers a bundle that we couldn’t afford
- His heinous racist denigration of four members of Congress, all U.S. citizens, whom he told to get out of the country and go back where they came from
No doubt, Trump is eager to stop the bleeding that is a result of all these things (and more). So … what better way than a red herring … something to distract attention from his domestic screw-ups … than an international “incident”? Wouldn’t be the first time.
And second … there is a proven theory that when a nation is so divided that it is literally eating itself from within, as the U.S. is doing today, an external threat will bring the two sides together, if only temporarily, to fight the external threat. If that is the thinking … and it would have come from either Pompeo or Bolton, for Trump hasn’t the intelligence to think of it on his own … then he has two choices: North Korea or Iran. Since he still seems to hold tight to the idea that his snow job on Kim Jong-un worked and that they now love each other, despite the fact that his summit failed to produce any tangible results, that leaves Iran. National Security Advisor John Bolton and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo have both had itchy fingers for a long time … decades, in fact … to bomb Iran, to affect a regime change. They are a well-matched pair of warmongers.
And a third possibility is financial. War is profitable for arms manufacturers, and some of Trump’s best buddies manufacture arms. Why do you think he’s trying so hard to sell arms to Saudi Arabia? He has proposed often enough that we need to build up our supply of arms, but the proposal is not, overall, met with cheers of approval, for we have the largest national debt in our history, and more tanks just doesn’t seem as important to most of us as healthcare and feeding the poor. But, if we enter a war …
Again, I don’t know what is behind Trump’s taunts, mockery and lies, but these are just the result of my sleepless nights spent thinking, spent pondering on the “why” of it all, and I think there is some thread of logic to these thoughts. And now, I return you to your Sunday evening activities.