Pompeo as imperial proconsul – Part two


"In the past couple days, the vice president and the secretary of state have threatened to go to war against Iran and North Korea if those countries’ leaders don’t bend to President Donald Trump’s will.

The nation’s top diplomat, Mike Pompeo, said in a speech on Monday that the United States would “crush” Iran, through economic and military pressure, if it did not change its behavior in the Middle East. Trump’s right-hand man, Mike Pence, told Fox News, on the same day, that North Korea would wind up like Libya “if Kim Jong-un doesn’t make a deal” to get rid of his nuclear weapons. Asked if this could be interpreted as a threat, he said, “Well, I think it’s more of a fact.”

Pence brought up Libya to clarify the recent remarks by Trump’s national security adviser, John Bolton, who likened an acceptable deal with North Korea to the one struck in the early 2000s with Libyan leader Muammar Qaddafi, who gave up his nascent nuclear program in exchange for sanctions relief. A few years later, Qaddafi was overthrown in a Western-backed revolt, then killed. North Koreans’ leaders were not amused by the comparison.

Pompeo and Pence issued these threats without the slightest backing of a single foreign ally or international institution. Their statements—along with Trump’s recent abrogation of the Iran nuclear deal, despite the uncontested fact that Iran has abided by its terms—have, in fact, alienated the European leaders who co-signed the deal.

An actual attack on either country would likely have catastrophic consequences. A tangible buildup to war with North Korea would arouse opposition from South Korea and Japan—and, possibly, resistance from China. Sunni Arabs and Israel’s political leadership might welcome an attack on Iran, but it would embroil the United States in an even deeper, deadlier conflict than the war in Iraq. For one thing, Iran is much larger than Iraq; for another, though most of its people despise their regime, history suggests that they detest foreign invaders even more."  Kaplan in Slate


 1.  To my certain knowledge Libya did not have a "nascent" nuclear program.  What it had was a large collection of crates filled with bits and pieces of technology that it had purchased across the globe.  Surrendering this materiel was intended to give George W. Bush a political ally in the Arab World after 9/11 and in return Libya was let back in the house after a long stint in the dog house.

2.  IMO the fantasy life of the Trumpians in the ME will yield nothing except the possibility of a major US war in the ME, a war fought in furtherance of Israel's paranoia about Iran.

3.  IMO Russia, China, India and the EU WILL NOT yield to Trump's fantasy.

4.  The worst part of this speech is little quoted.  Pompeo said in the speech that we would apply such demands to ANY COUNTRY IN THE WORLD that misbehaves.  pl 


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