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https://robertjprince.net/2020/01/06/no-to-war-with-iran-the-wounded-beast-syndromeu-s-assassinates-iranian-general-qassim-suleimani-in-a-heliocopter-attack-6-Trumpian “Diplomacy”

January 7, 2020

Iraqis Storming the US Embassy in protest of Trump’s assassination of Iranian General Qassim Suleimani and Iraqi Popular Mobilization Forces leader Abu Mahdi al Muhandis

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Bartlett relates that in testimony before the Iraqi Parliament – prior to its vote calling for the removal of U.S. troops from Iraq –  the country’s former Prime Minister, Abdul Mahdi, commented that Trump threatened to have US marines snipers fire at protesters if he refuses to cancel a major trade agreement with China. He also said that Trump threatened to have him & the defense minister killed.

The subtlety of Al Capone. No, Capone would have been more “poetic”.

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Washington’s Political Insane Asylum

Every day a new revelation.

Interesting how during crises another truth – seems to get shaken loose and how the main stream media – the big guys – the TV networks, the New York Times, Washington Post etc. – try to shape the narrative. For the most part they apply what is referred to as “gray propaganda” – ie. they don’t exactly lie but emphasize or de-emphasize the truth as they see it in order to shape the narrative they would like the public to swallow. “Black” propaganda – a la Fox News and the like – they resort to outright lying no wholes barred.

Without spending one’s entire day filtering this and that news story, it is possible to glean a counter narrative – one closer to reality. There are useful sources – even on Facebook – and the internet in general that help deconstruct the untruths and exaggerations that bring into focus what is really going on. Also, especially but not uniquely with this president – it seems that the spats within the Administration go in opposite directions.

By way of examples:

– two days ago the president in his usual vile manner threatened to bomb 52 sites in Iran – among them the country’s cultural sites. The next day, in contradiction, the Pentagon said no, cultural sites would not be targets.

– similarly, there are wildly contradictory statements coming from the Administration and its Supreme Do Do Head concerning the drawing down of U.S. troops in Iraq.

State Department going one way, Defense another, the president tweeting whatever comes to mind and openly attacking the FBI (yesterday Trump referred to the FBI as “scum“), Trump says something one day, his own Pentagon contradicts him the next. Looks like a zoo, sounds like a zoo, feels like a zoo, smells like a zoo.  Guess it’s a zoo.

As a result the United States loses all credibility not only in the eyes of its opponents, but even its so-called allies.

Yesterday we learned via various news sources that Suleimani had come to Iraq at the request of the Iraqi Prime Minister to consider a Saudi peace offer that Trump had asked the Iraqis to facilitate. He had flown into Baghdad on a commercial airline in a most public manner. So………. Trump essentially facilitates the meeting and then murders Suleimani. Nice.

The China Connection

Today’s revelation, comes from Iraq, provided by Canadian journalist Eva Bartlett, a light in an otherwise dark room of international journalism, giving us a fine example of Trumpian diplomacy and suggesting the degree to which we live in a political insane asylum.

Bartlett relates that in testimony before the Iraqi Parliament – prior to its vote calling for the removal of U.S. troops from Iraq –  the country’s former Prime Minister, Abdul Mahdi, commented that Trump threatened to have US marines snipers fire at protesters if he refuses to cancel a major trade agreement with China. He also said that Trump threatened to have him & the defense minister killed. Here is Abdul Mahdi’s commentary that Bartlett provided:

” After I signed a strategic agreement with China Trump called me and demanded that I cancel the agreement. When I refused he threatened with massive demonstrations against me that would lead to my removal as PM. And indeed the demonstrations started after that. He then called me and threatened that if I don’t cooperate and submit to his demands “a third party” (US marine snipers) will target and kill both demonstrators and security forces from high rise buildings and the US embassy in an attempt to pressure me to submit that I cancel the agreement with China. I refused and I resigned. Up to this day, the Americans are insisting that we cancel the agreement with China. When the Defense Minister said that “a third party” is killing demonstrators, Trump called me immediately and threatened to eliminate both myself and the defense minister if we continued to talk about “a third party.”

The subtlety of Al Capone. No, Capone would have been more “poetic”.

Concerning Trump’s “temper-temper” over Iraq’s growing ties with China, an article in The Global Post gets to the heart of the matter:

China is Iraq’s largest trading partner, with trade between the two nations reaching about $30 billion last year. Similarly, Iraq is China’s second-largest supplier of crude oil, and the fourth biggest trading partner of China in the Middle East.

In September, Iraqi Prime Minister Adil Abdul-Mahdi visited China and signed eight agreements to further increase ties between the two countries. These deals pertained to a diverse set of areas, including in finance, trade, security, construction, and foreign affairs. Chinese President Xi Jinping said the two countries would cooperate mainly on oil and infrastructure projects.

In another example of increased trade between the two nations, Iraq is also turning to Chinese companies to replace ExxonMobil in an infrastructure megaproject. ExxonMobil has been discussing versions of the project for several years with Iraq, when PetroChina was brought in as a partner in 2015.

But there is something else about Abdul Mahdi’s remarks that needs underlying, the degree to which the recent demonstrations in Iraq were manipulated by Washington following a classic Gene Sharp script. Even more damning is the accusation in this commentary is that the demonstrators killed in Iraq during these demonstrations were not killed by Iraqi security forces, but by U.S. marines (“the third party). Bottom line becomes quite interesting.

Abdul Mahdi was not forced to resign because of demonstration anger over the Iraqi domestic situation (admittedly a mess) but because he refused to capitulate to Trump’s demands that Iraq tone down its relations with China’s Belt and Road program – which Kazerooni and I alluded to in our recent radio program.

OK, friends – YOU figure it out… what is fact, what is fiction. My take – what Bartlett exposed here is EXACTLY what happened and probably, once it was revealed to the Iraqi Parliament – one of the key reasons that it voted for the United States to withdraw all of its troops from Iraq…

Cheers…

7 Comments leave one →
  1. William Conklin permalink
    January 7, 2020 11:24 am

    The last two days articles were really wonderful of course they’re all good but the last two days were extremely informative keep up the good work and could you publish those on counterpunch

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

  2. KKaridis permalink
    January 7, 2020 2:06 pm

    Link to Bartlett’s report, please.

  3. Phil Jones permalink
    January 7, 2020 3:16 pm

    What are the “several” sources for the assertion that Suleimani came to Iraq to discuss a Saudi proposal? I’ve been looking for some mention of that in the news, but haven’t found any.

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