Friday, 3 January 2020

one dimensional chess

Though it is far too generous and naïve on all of our parts to hope that Trump, an impeached president ordering the assassination of foreign military leaders in contradiction to the Geneva Conventions and without informing much less consulting Congress and quite possibly his own military intelligence and senior leadership, might have a follow-on strategy that would de-escalate the situation and privilege the standing of America and its allies in the region, even the most satirical or cynical among us would not have summoned up a such a blathering, insipid response.
A day after urging protestors storming the US Green Zone and embassy compound in Baghdad in anger over US airstrikes against the Iranian-backed Kata’ib Hezbollah militia to disperse, a drone, at the direction of Donald Trump, destroyed the vehicle convoy transporting Major General and elite Quds Forces commander Qasem Soleimani and Popular Mobilisation Forces commander Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis at the capital’s airport—barely any time elapsing since the signal to stop rallying had been issued to gauge whether the protestors were under the control of the Iranian military in the first place, as the Trump administration suggestion—absent any evidence or intention, or than a provocative missive since deleted by Trump’s son foreshadowing the drone strike. This brash, unilateral behaviour once again demonstrates to the world America’s untrustworthiness as an international partner and its penchant for betrayal rather than dialogue when relationships become strained. Undoubtedly this is a case of the tail wagging the dog and a distraction from the focus on Trump’s impeachment but I’d be willing to bet, coming from this conman and carnival-barker and his following of grifters, that there’s wrapped into that diversionary tactic (those are the only stratagem this scoundrel takes truck in—self-preservation at all costs) is something more to put on the table: offering the more hawkish elements of those that have left the Trump cabinet the war that they’ve always wanted in exchange for their continued silence.