The Wednesday announcement by the Iran's embassy to China on Chinese twitter-like social media platform Sina Weibo. The annoucement says "End of malign US presence in West Asia has begun." Photo: Screenshot of Sina Weibo
Don't read anything from his tweets, you are assuming POTUS is a rational man, he is anything but! I'm more pessimistic than you.Trump’s initial tweet response was unusually restrained and in stark contrast to his fire and fury rhetoric before Iran struck back. It’s almost a classic textbook bullyboy response whereby a bully will be all bravado and mouth until you punch him back, at which point he is suddenly all reasonable and wanting to be your best bud.
The thing is that president Trump isn’t businessman Trump. His initial gut response might be typical bullyboy, but president trump has the full might of the US military at his disposal, so he has plenty of options to strike back with no need to back down. The worry is that once he has had a chance to claim down and reassess his options, he will realise this and want to reassert his dominance.
Unlike NK, Iran has no nuclear backstop, meaning the US has absolute escalation advantage at every level.
I also think that there are plenty of American generals, spymasters and diplomats who see the Iranian response as a perfect pretext and cover to launch the strikes against Iranian nuclear facilities many of them have been desperate to hit for years.
These men and women would be able to easily frame their aims in the language of electoral advantage and convince Trump that to not retaliate against this Iranian response would be to show weakness and all but end his re-election prospects. Especially in light of the very public threats he has already made.
As such, I am very worried that Iran and America are now rapidly sprinting to the end of the slippery slope towards war, and will soon fall over point of no return.
There are too many converging forces and interests in America that wants war with Iran, or at least massive comprehensive strikes against Iranian nuclear facilities to reset their nuclear ambitions. Many of those interested parties would be the exact people who are now briefing trump on what his options are.
It is always easier to start wars than to avoid them, it takes tremendous strength of character and convictions to tell an angry population that they need to keep the bigger picture in mind and not give in to their baser instincts of anger and cravings for revenge, especially if doing so means going against the advice of your own generals and advisers, and indeed, possibly his own personal political interests. Can anyone say that Trump is the guy who has those qualities, integrity and convictions to put the interests of his nation and the world first?
My gloomy predictions is that Trump will order a full strike against all Iranian nuclear facilities, and then have the cheek to apply double talk and claim that such a move is a massively restrained and reserved response that the Iranians should be grateful for because he did not commit war crimes by ordering the deliberate attack of Iranian cultural sites like he threatened.
I would love to be wrong, but that’s how I see this going.