IRAN | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED

IRAN

Jun 19 09:06

War against Iran will not end well for the aggressors

Here we go again. The shadow of war is again cast over the Persian Gulf. Having already destroyed Iraq over the past decade and more, the US is now threatening to do the same to Iran.

The escalation of events in recent weeks is, frankly, alarming, but a military invasion of Iran will not end in the same way as it did in Iraq. While Iraq itself as a country was never really subdued, the US and UK-led war of aggression did succeed in killing more than a million people. It also ignited a brutal sectarian civil war which tore the country apart for years, as well as birthing ISIS/Daesh, the so-called Islamic State. Moreover, Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein fell quite easily.

Jun 19 08:43

A Proactive Russia and China Could Prevent US War with Iran

There is so much disinformation that it is difficult to judge the Israeli news report below that the US is planning a military attack on Iran. Israel wants the US to attack Iran and the report could be an attempt to push events in that direction.

There is no valid reason for Washington to serve Israeli interests.

It would be extremely irresponsible for Washington to risk starting another war.

Jun 19 08:37

Iran at the center of the Eurasian riddle

President Rouhani blasts US leader Donald Trump as ‘a serious threat to regional and world stability’, offers preferential treatment to SCO companies that invest in his country

Jun 19 08:34

Trump prepares to bypass Congress to take on Iran

The Trump administration and its domestic political allies are laying the groundwork for a possible confrontation with Iran without the explicit consent of Congress — a public relations campaign that was already well underway before top officials accused the Islamic Republic of attacking a pair of oil tankers last week in the Gulf of Oman.

Over the past few months, senior Trump aides have made the case in public and private that the administration already has the legal authority to take military action against Iran, citing a law nearly two decades old that was originally intended to authorize the war in Afghanistan.

Jun 19 08:33

Trump Has Brilliantly Cornered Himself Where He’s Now Demanding Iran Abide by a Deal He Already Reneged On

After years of deriding the nuclear deal as “the worst deal in history,” President DonaldTrump withdrew the U.S. from what’s formally known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action and reinstated sanctions on Iran. The Trump administration, already suffering from a serious credibility deficit with allies, is now in the awkward position of demanding that Tehran comply with an agreement the American president has not only derided but pulled out of! “Administration officials found themselves Monday grappling with whether to press the remaining parties to the deal, including Britain, France and Germany, to demand that Iran stay in compliance,” the Associated Press reports. “They must also consider if such a stance would essentially concede that the restrictions imposed during the Obama administration, while short of ideal, are better than none.”

Jun 19 08:31

Israel has 80-90 nukes, SIPRI report says, as Tel Aviv continues to accuse Iran of nuclear obsession

Israel, which routinely accuses Iran of trying to obtain nuclear weapons and pledges to use force to stop Tehran, maintains its own undeclared nuclear arsenal estimated at 80 to 90, according to the latest report by SIPRI.

There are nine nations in the world that currently have nuclear weapons, the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) says in its newly released yearbook on the state of armaments and international security. The world nuclear stockpile went from 14,465 at the beginning of last year to about 13,865 this year, the report estimates, as the US and Russia were delivering on their promises under the New START Treaty signed in 2010.

Jun 18 12:00

Oil Tanker Attacks in the Gulf Have US Fingerprints All Over Them

It was the Spanish philosopher, poet and novelist, George Santayana (1863-1952), who warned us all: "Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it".

Watching the unfolding US promoted narrative in the Persian Gulf seas over this past few days and weeks those words should ring loudly in the ears of everyone who values peace and opposes the carnage, destruction and horrific waste of life delivered by war.

If you swallow the American propaganda plastered across newspaper front pages and dominating news bulletins on every Western TV news channel then you really are as bright as a dark night.

Jun 18 11:54

Iran: War ‘Unavoidable’ if U.S. Does Not Lift Sanctions

A senior adviser to the Iranian government said war is “inevitable” if the United States does not lift sanctions against Iran, Saudi Arabia’s Al Arabiya reported Monday.

“If American people really don’t want to go to war with Iran, the US president should abandon the current course of policy in regard to sanctioning Iran. Otherwise, rising tensions automatically will drive us to an unavoidable war, sooner or later,” said Diako Hosseini, a senior analyst at the Center for Strategic Studies (CSS) in Tehran on Friday.

According to Al-Arabiya News, the CSS is “a think tank responsible for advising the Rouhani administration in Iran on foreign policy as well as internal affairs.” President Hassan Rouhani is the chief executive of the secular wing of Iran’s government and subservient to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

Jun 18 11:38

TANKER WAR IN PERSIAN GULF AND US-IRANIAN CONFLICT

The Persian Gulf region has turned into a new hot point in the Middle East.

On May 12, a supposed sabotage attack targeted very large crude carrier Amjad and crude tanker Al Marzoqah (both owned by Saudi shipping firm Bahri). The UAE-flagged fuel bunker barge A Michel and Norwegian-registered oil products tanker MT Andrea Victory were also targeted, all off of UAE’s Fujairah. The attack did not cause any casualties or an oil spill.

Jaber Al Lamki, an executive director at the UAE’s National Media Council, claimed that the attack was “aimed at undermining global oil supplies and maritime security.” Mainstream media outlets came out with various speculations regarding the incident providing contradictory claims from ‘anonymous sources’. Most of these speculations were focused on supposed Iranian involvement in the situation.

Jun 18 11:33

‘What is Trump’s motivation to be provocative with Iran?’ Pelosi asks– and the answer is Adelson

Yesterday Nancy Pelosi asked a very pointed question on CNN, Why is Trump threatening a war with Iran?

[W]hat is his motivation? What is their motivation to be provocative with the Iranians? Why did the president turn his back on the Iranian nuclear agreement? What’s the logic except some other issue — that it was negotiated by President Obama? We had so many national security experts, whether they were ambassadors, generals, admirals and all the rest supporting the agreement as well, so it had official, diplomatic, national security, technical, nuclear, et cetera support along the way. So why?

So, then he comes in and does — undoes that and inflames the U.S.-Iran issue. Why? What is the purpose?… I think he probably knows there’s no appetite for war among the American people.

Jun 18 11:32

U.N. officials: U.S. planning a 'tactical assault' in Iran

Is the US going to attack Iran soon?

Diplomatic sources at the UN headquarters in New York revealed to Maariv that they are assessing the United States' plans to carry out a tactical assault on Iran in response to the tanker attack in the Persian Gulf on Thursday.

According to the officials, since Friday, the White House has been holding incessant discussions involving senior military commanders, Pentagon representatives and advisers to President Donald Trump.

The military action under consideration would be an aerial bombardment of an Iranian facility linked to its nuclear program, the officials further claimed.

"The bombing will be massive but will be limited to a specific target," said a Western diplomat.

Jun 18 11:17

Gulf ‘attacks’ on oil tankers are a cover for a bigger agenda

The attacks on two Japanese oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman last week have raised both concerns and exasperation in the region. Saudi Arabia, Britain and the US — of course — accuse Iran of carrying out the attacks; it has rejected the accusations. The US made the accusations without “a shred of factual or circumstantial evidence,” insisted Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif on Twitter on Friday.

The US Navy said that it spotted Iranian vessels near the targeted tankers and released a video claiming to show Iranian sailors removing an unexploded limpet mine from the hull of one of the vessels. However, Japan’s preliminary investigations suggest that “a flying object” hit the ships: “The crew saw it with their own eyes. The impact happened above the water line. The crew took evasive action but were hit again three hours later.”

Jun 18 11:09

If Iran Is Responsible for the Fuel Tanker Attacks in the Gulf of Oman (And It May Not Be), It Is Only a Reaction to Washington’s Outrageous Conduct in the Middle East

Who is responsible for the recent attacks on the fuel tankers in the Gulf of Oman? Washington blames Iran, and has offered what it calls proof—a grainy video allegedly showing what are said to be Iranians removing what is said to be a mine from what is said to be the hull of a stricken tanker. But the video proves nothing more than someone removed, or appeared to remove, (not affixed but removed) something from the hull of a ship. Even The New York Times was skeptical of the video-graphic indictment. US secretary of state Mike Pompeo argued that the attacks could only have been carried out by a perpetrator with “a high level of expertise,” i.e., a state, and not just any state, but Iran.

Jun 18 11:09

America Last: The Real Meaning of the Donald’s Deplorable Aggression Against Iran

In the present era of 24/7 "breaking news", the journalistic information intermediated by the internet and the cable networks has largely been reduced to noise, devoid of signal. Or at least any historical context beyond the here and now.

The currently threatened escalation of Washington’s economic war on Iran into an actual shooting war is a fraught case in point. Based on the news coverage since the two oil tankers were damaged yesterday you’d think that a crew of bloody-minded aggressors in Tehran had up and decided out of the blue to attack the whole world via disrupting its 18 million barrel per day oil lifeline through the Straits of Hormuz.

The truth of the matter, however, is just the opposite. The blatant aggressor is Washington and the dangerous confrontation now unfolding is utterly unnecessary.

Jun 18 11:05

US planning ‘tactical assault’ on Iran in response to 'tanker attack' — report

UN sources believe that the United States is planning to carry out a “tactical assault on Iran” in response to the attack on two oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman, which it blamed Tehran for without providing credible evidence.

Diplomatic sources based at the UN’s New York headquarters told the Hebrew-language Israeli newspaper Maariv that they are assessing US plans to carry out the assault.

The officials claimed that the Trump administration has been holding non-stop discussions involving senior military commanders and advisers to President Donald Trump since Friday, the Jerusalem Post reported.

Jun 18 11:05

Trump not in control of Iran policy, should perhaps fire Bolton – EU foreign policy chief’s adviser

US President Donald Trump does not appear to be in control of his own administration’s Iran policy and he should fire national security adviser John Bolton, special adviser to EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini told RT.
In an interview with RT’s Sophie Shevarnadze, Nathalie Tocci said Trump has “been led into a very different direction” than the one he might otherwise have gone in without input from Bolton.

Asked why she didn't trust Trump's claims that he does not want regime change in Iran, Tocci said Bolton clearly has a different position – and he seems to be the one writing the administration’s policy on Tehran.

Unfortunately at the moment it seems to me that the US’s Iran policy has a very clear author and that author is not the president of the United States.

Jun 18 10:03

Are there any informative historical precedents for a US-Iran war?

Amid fears that recent tensions between the United States and Iran could have resulted in a major war between the two adversaries, it's worth contemplating if there are any informative historical precedents for such a war. It's quite clear upon doing so, however, that there are few, if any, suitable precedents for such an outcome.

Nevertheless, it's worth pondering over precedents from the last few decades to ascertain just how unprecedented such a conflict would be.

Perhaps a fitting precedent, to begin with, is the last, and only, time the US and Iran fought each other. In 1987-88, during the so-called 'Tanker War' phase of the Iran-Iraq War, the US re-flagged and escorted oil tankers through the Persian Gulf to prevent attacks on them from Iran.

Jun 18 10:02

INTELLIGENCE EXPERTS QUESTION IRAN VIDEO: 'U.S. TRACK RECORD ON GINNING UP EVIDENCE FOR WAR IS NOT GOOD'

The black and white surveillance video is exceedingly grainy. It shows what U.S. military officials say is an Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corp patrol boat bobbing alongside the Kokuka Courageous, one of the two tankers damaged by explosions Thursday in the Gulf of Oman that the Trump administration blamed squarely on Iran.

In the 1:39-minute video, released late Thursday by the U.S. Central Command, several crew members aboard the Gashti-class patrol boat appear to be removing an object from the hull of the tanker before the boat then backs up and motors away. The video is far too fuzzy to discern what the object is. But according to the U.S. military officials, the Iranian crew members removed one of their own unexploded limpet mines to hide evidence of their involvement in the explosions. The officials said several Iranian patrol boats had rushed to the Kokuka Courageous to rescue crew members who had abandoned ship in rafts and told the Iranians about the unexploded mine.

Jun 18 09:44

Iran's enriched uranium stockpile to surpass 300 kg from June 27: AEOI spokesman

The spokesman for the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran says the country will surpass the uranium stockpile limit set under the nuclear deal from June 27.

"Today the countdown to pass the 300 kilograms reserve of enriched uranium has started and in 10 days time we will pass this limit," Behrouz Kamalvandi told reporters at the Arak Heavy Water Reactor Facility Monday.

"This is based on the Articles 26 and 36 of the (nuclear deal), and will be reversed once other parties live up to their commitments," he added.

Iran may also increase uranium enrichment to up to 20 percent for use in local reactors, he said. The 2015 nuclear accord caps the level of purity to which Iran can enrich uranium at 3.67 percent.

Jun 18 09:35

U.N. Officials Say U.S. Planning 'Tactical Assault' on Iran As Trump Sends More Troops to Middle East

President Donald Trump is sending 1,000 additional US troops to the Middle East as several UN officials told the Hebrew-language only Israeli newspaper Maariv that the US "plans to carry out a tactical assault on Iran in response to the tanker attack in the Persian Gulf on Thursday."

Jun 18 09:02

Trump Can’t Defend Our Border, So He Should Attack Iran! Wait—What?

It is the worst of times and the worst of times—at home and abroad. Unremitting waves of “migrants” a.k.a. illegal aliens continue to pummel America’s southern border, with no end in sight [Record number of undocumented immigrants flooded the southern border in May, by Julia Ainsley, NBC, June 5, 2019]. No truly sovereign nation would tolerate such an invasion, but the “sole superpower” permits it. At the same time, America is on the brink of yet another disastrous military conflict in the Middle East, this time with Iran. [Iran Threatens Nuclear Escalation as War Tensions Increase With U.S., by Paul Shinkman, U.S. News and World Report, June 17, 2019]. No American national interest is at stake. Rather than “America First,” the Trump Administration seems to be pursuing a policy of “America Irrelevant.”

The border situation is so outrageous it appears like something out of a black comedy.

Jun 18 09:01

Be Skeptical of Alleged Naval Provocations

Maybe they did; maybe they didn’t. That’s not the point. Even if Iran did attack a couple tankers in the Gulf of Oman – as the Trump team assures us it did – there’s no reason for a war. As I’ve written repeatedly, war with the Islamic Republic would be ill-advised, illegal, and immoral. It simply isn’t necessary. Wars of choice should be avoided at all costs. Besides, the U.S. has a nasty habit of pointing to alleged naval provocations as a justification for aggressive wars. So much so, in fact, that it’s hard not to assume the worst and mistrust the official story from Washington.

Jun 18 08:59

If Trump Doesn't Want a War With Iran, He Should Stop Pushing Iran Towards War

Four tankers off the Emirati coast were damaged last month by what investigators concluded were explosives attached to the ships' hulls. The Trump administration immediately pointed to Iran or Iranian-directed proxies as the perpetrators of the attacks. Yesterday, two more ships were attacked near the Strait of Hormuz. And for the second time, Trump administration officials blamed Tehran for the incident, citing a grainy, black-and-white video of an Iranian vessel purportedly approaching one of the ships to remove an unexploded mine hours after the attack happened.

While the circumstances remain murky, we should not be surprised if investigators prove that Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps conducted or ordered these strikes. Why? Because U.S. economic sanctions against Iran are crushing an already cash-poor economy, and retaliation was inevitable. If the Trump administration continues its policy toward Iran, we could very well find ourselves in a war nobody wants.

Jun 18 08:58

War With Iran Would Become ‘Trump’s War’

President Donald Trump cannot want war with Iran.

Such a war, no matter how long, would be fought in and around the Persian Gulf, through which a third of the world’s seaborne oil travels. It could trigger a worldwide recession and imperil Trump’s reelection.

It would widen the "forever war," which Trump said he would end, to a nation of 80 million people, three times as large as Iraq. It would become the defining issue of his presidency, as the Iraq War became the defining issue of George W. Bush’s presidency.

And if war comes now, it would be known as "Trump’s War."

For it was Trump who pulled us out of the Iran nuclear deal, though, according to U.N. inspectors and the other signatories – Britain, France, Germany, Russia, China – Tehran was complying with its terms.

Jun 18 08:51

Iran and Russia sign memorandum of understanding on energy cooperation - SHANA

Iran and Russia have signed a memorandum of understanding over cooperation in the energy sector, the Iranian oil ministry’s SHANA news agency reported on Monday.

The preliminary agreement covering oil, gas, petrochemicals, electricity and nuclear power was signed in Tehran by Iran’s deputy oil minister, Amir Hossein Zamaninia, and his Russian counterpart, SHANA said.

Jun 17 17:59

Trump not in control of Iran policy, should perhaps fire Bolton – EU foreign policy chief’s adviser

US President Donald Trump does not appear to be in control of his own administration’s Iran policy and he should fire national security adviser John Bolton, special adviser to EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini told RT.

In an interview with RT’s Sophie Shevarnadze, Nathalie Tocci said Trump has “been led into a very different direction” than the one he might otherwise have gone in without input from Bolton.

Asked why she didn't trust Trump's claims that he does not want regime change in Iran, Tocci said Bolton clearly has a different position – and he seems to be the one writing the administration’s policy on Tehran.

Jun 17 14:29

Arrests Made as Iran Busts 'Large' CIA-Run Network - Reports

The development comes against the backdrop of tensions between the United States and Iran that dramatically escalated last week, when Washington accused Tehran of being behind attacks on two oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman.

Iran has dismantled a CIA-run "large US cyber-espionage" network, the Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting (IRIB) reported, citing the secretary of Iran's Supreme National Security Council, Ali Shamkhani.

"Given the cooperation between the Islamic Republic of Iran and other countries in creating an 'international organisation to counter American espionage', we provided our partners with information that led to the disclosure and dismantling of a network of CIA officers, as well as detention and punishment of several spies in different countries", the senior official said.

Jun 17 12:59

Officials Worldwide Are Skeptical of Claim that Iran Attacked Tankers In Gulf of Oman

The Trump administration says that Iran attacked two ships in the Gulf of Oman.

But Japanese government officials have expressed skepticism. Japan Today reports:

Jun 17 11:47

Japan demands more proof from U.S. that Iran attacked tankers

The Japanese government has been requesting the United States for concrete evidence to back its assertion that Iran is to blame for the attacks on two tankers near the Strait of Hormuz on Thursday, government sources said Sunday.

The request came after U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo gave a statement hours after the attacks blaming Iran but without offering proof. The Department of Defense later released a video allegedly showing an Iranian patrol boat removing an unexploded mine attached to the side of the Japanese-operated tanker Kokuka Courageous.

But Japanese government officials remain unconvinced, the sources said. "The U.S. explanation has not helped us go beyond speculation," said one senior government official.

Jun 17 11:45

Iran hints US could be behind 'suspicious' tanker attacks

Iran's parliament speaker hinted Sunday that Washington could be behind the "suspicious" tanker attacks in the Gulf of Oman to pile pressure on Tehran, official news agency IRNA reported.

"The suspicious actions against the tankers... seem to complement the economic sanctions against Iran considering that (the US) has not achieved any results from them," Ali Larijani told MPs.

He backed his claim by saying there had been a precedent "during World War II, when Americans targeted their own ships near Japan to create an excuse for hostility".

Jun 17 11:42

Matt Gaetz: ‘America First’ Means Protecting U.S. Border Before Avenging Japanese Vessels

Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) suggested on Sunday that America should secure its border before avenging foreign vessels allegedly attacked by Iran.

Congressman Gaetz tweeted Sunday, suggesting that America should heed Japan and Norway’s caution against war with Iran amid heightened tensions with the Middle Eastern nation.

The Florida congressman wrote, “Japanese and Norwegian vessels were attacked. If these nations aren’t calling for war, neither should the U.S. We can’t afford another #ForeverWar“:

Jun 17 11:41

Ex-Iranian Diplomat Claims Israel Behind Oil Tanker Attacks

A former Iranian diplomat claimed that Israel with responsible for Thursday’s attacks on two oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman, an Iranian media outlet reported.

Without offering any evidence, Hamid Reza Asefi, who served as Iran’s ambassador to France and Foreign Ministry spokesman, claimed the motive behind the attack was “clear.”

“I think the directing of such incidents in the region are done by the Zionist regime and this has no hidden dimensions,” Asefi told Iran Online in an interview cited by the Tehran Times.

Israel benefits the most from accusations against Iran, Asefi theorized, and therefore “logically the Zionist regime is the agent of this incident.”

Jun 17 11:22

Japan Suggests United States, Israel Also 'Technologically Sophisticated Enough To Conduct The Tanker Attack'

The Japanese government has been requesting the United States for concrete evidence to back its assertion that Iran is to blame for the attacks on two tankers near the Strait of Hormuz on Thursday, government sources said Sunday.

The request came after U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo gave a statement hours after the attacks blaming Iran but without offering proof. The Department of Defense later released a video allegedly showing an Iranian patrol boat removing an unexploded mine attached to the side of the Japanese-operated tanker Kokuka Courageous.

But Japanese government officials remain unconvinced, the sources said. "The U.S. explanation has not helped us go beyond speculation," said one senior government official.

Japan has been seeking more concrete evidence through various channels, including Foreign Minister Taro Kono who is likely to have made the request during a call with his counterpart on Friday, the sources said.

Jun 17 11:20

Tom Cotton Calls To Begin 'Retaliatory Strikes' On Iran By Unleashing 'Fire And Fury Of The Military'

Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR) on Sunday called for a "retaliatory strike on Iran" after Trump administration officials alleged that the country is behind attacks on Japanese oil tankers, intelligence disputed by the tanker company officials.

"Well, Iran for 40 years has engaged in this kind of attacks, going back to 1980s," Cotton told CBS host Margaret Brennan.

"These unprovoked attacks a warrant retaliatory strikes," he added. "We can make a military response in the time and matter of our choosing."

"A retaliatory strike?" Brennan pressed. "As someone who sits in Congress, do you believe that he can act, the administration can act without coming to Congress first?"

"Yes, Margaret," Cotton replied, "going back to President Washington and all the way to President Trump, the fastest way to get the fire and fury of the military unleashed on you is interfering with the open navigation in the sea and air and this is what Iran is doing in one of the most important choke points."

Jun 17 10:55

Netanyahu: World must step up Iran sanctions if uranium threat realized

PM statement comes hours after Tehran announces it will break uranium stockpile limit set by nuclear deal in the next 10 days; Rouhani warns time running out to salvage nuclear deal in wake of Trump withdrawal

Jun 17 10:55

US will not ‘stumble into’ war with Iran by mistake. If it happens, it will be by design

There are men in Washington intent on going to war with Iran – and very few people doubt this fact. Why then, does the media keep warning us that conflict could break out “accidentally”? The US does not go to war by mistake.

Last week, Donald Trump pinned the blame for the attack on two oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman squarely on Iran. US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, who has been running around provoking Iran in word and deed for months, called the attacks an “unacceptable escalation of tension.” The so-called proof came in the form of a grainy video that presented more questions than answers.

Jun 17 10:50

Israel Joins U.S., UK in Blaming Iran for Oil Tanker Attack

Israeli intelligence has joined the U.S.’s accusations that Iran carried out Thursday’s attacks on two oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman, an Israeli TV report claimed over the weekend, citing senior intelligence officials.

Jun 17 10:11

"THE COUNTDOWN HAS BEGUN:" IRAN WARNS IT WILL BREACH URANIUM STOCKPILE LIMITS IN 10 DAYS

SOURCE: ZEROHEDGE
Iran certainly isn't planning on backing down in the face of Washington's accusations about the country's role in last week's tanker bombings, and as a result, the possibility of a boots-on-the-ground military conflict in the Islamic Republic cannot yet be ruled out. Making an already tense situation infinitely more precarious, Iran on Monday reminded the world that it's preparing to violate the terms of the Iran deal during the next ten days.

By increasing its stockpiles of enriched uranium, Iran is bound to elicit accusations that it's once again working on a nuclear bomb.Tehran has always maintained that its nuclear program is for peaceful purposes, but American neocons like John Bolton have warned that this was merely a ruse, and that Iran could target American allies like Israel with a missile.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

(Sigh) For a second, I had hoped that this was the polar opposite from what the Iranian government had said; unfortunately, bopping over to www.presstv.com, the pr outlet the Iranian government, this was precisely what they had stated.

Iran's enriched uranium stockpile to surpass 300 kg from June 27: AEOI spokesman

It goes on to state: "Tehran has said it may go even further by July 8 unless remaining partners to the deal -- Britain, China, France, Germany and Russia -- help it circumvent US sanctions and especially enable it to sell its oil.

Kamalvandi said there is still time for European countries to save the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), as the nuclear deal is officially known.

Folks, this is an attempted "power squeeze play" to attempt to insure that Iran's oil gets paid for and distributed, in spite of US sanctions. Europe can either fold to the Americans, and not buy Iranian oil, which will kick this upgrade to uranium enrichment into high gear, or figure out how to buy Iranian oil, with full US sanctions in place.

And remember: the enrichment upgrade about which they are talking, is symbolic only, to demonstrate that they have been playing by the rules all along, as the IAEA has attested, in their reports; because it takes 90% + enrichment to create a nuclear weapon.
Source: Popular Science (Mar, 1950) via Modern Mechanix.

This article goes on to state: "In order to build a nuclear bomb, you need “enriched” uranium. That’s a simple way of saying that you need to use uranium that is 90% or greater made up of the U-235 isotope, whereas natural uranium is 99.2% U-238, which is useless for making things go boom.

Will someone, preferably, someone with a science background, please gently mention this to President Trump, and quickly?!? Because right now, I am reasonably certain the the phone line for his direct-connect to Netanyahu, has Trump spinning, like a turbo-charged, industrial strength top, to advocate in favor of an invasion of Iran.

But Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, a word, please: you have just handed the US, and Israel, the "smoking gun" through which they are going to justify an attack against your country; and trust me, they are most probably not even going to begin to wait until either 27 June or 8 July.

And unfortunately, sir, most Americans have no clue as to what is happening here, because their background in hard sciences has been deliberately dumbed down by an educational system which doesn't want, or encourage, critical thinking, or questioning of the official government narrative. And, unfortunately, this makes the likelihood of positive US support for such an action, increase.

I understand that your economy is really hurting, because of the US sanctions on the sale of your oil; but sir, even though this is largely symbolic, this was absolutely the worst, officially horrible decision you could possibly have made under these circumstances; therefore, I am asking you to please reconsider.

Jun 17 09:59

Will A False Flag Iran War Cause A Financial Crisis?

Just a couple of weeks ago the financial world’s biggest worry was the plunging price of oil. Supply was up, stockpiles were building and speculation was pointing towards $40 a barrel, a price at which the fracking/shale oil "miracle" would evaporate. A trillion dollars of related junk debt would default, taking a big part of the leveraged speculating community along for the ride.

Then it all changed. Someone attacked some ships and oil infrastructure in the Middle East, the US and Saudi Arabia accused Iran, and now the fear is that a major regional war will interrupt the flow of oil, sending its price way up and causing a financial crisis at least as severe as a shale oil debt collapse.

This is a legitimate concern, for two reasons.

Jun 17 09:56

Iran will surpass uranium stockpile limit in 10 days

Iran will reach the stockpile limit of low-level enriched uranium set by the nuclear deal in ten days, said Behrouz Kamalvandi, the spokesman for the Iranian Atomic Agency, today.

“After we pass the limit of 300 kilogrammes the pace and speed of enriched uranium production at the lower rate will also increase,” he went on to say.

This comes a year after the US unilaterally withdrew from the nuclear deal last May and re-imposed “unprecedented” economic sanctions on Iran. Under the deal, Iran agreed to limit nuclear activities and allow international inspectors into the country in exchange for the lifting of financial sanctions.

Last month, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani gave the remaining signatories of the nuclear deal – the UK, France, Germany, China and Russia – an ultimatum: fulfil their promises to protect Iran’s oil and banking sectors from US sanctions in 60 days or Iran would resume high-level enrichment of uranium. He reiterated this ultimatum last week.

Jun 17 09:55

Has Trump painted himself into Israel’s corner over war with Iran?

Is America preparing to go to war with Iran? This is the question dominating discussions around dinner tables as well as boardrooms. Confined not only to the Middle East, where heightened concerns about the fall-out for the volatile region’s future forms part of the focus of debates, this is also a major issue around the world. Europe, Central Asia, the Far East and Africa will not be immune from repercussions of such a war if the Trump administration — which is filled with neocon hawks – starts to bomb and then invade Iran.

Jun 17 09:54

In defence of Jeremy Corbyn's brave and lonely stand on calls for war against Iran

The Labour leader proved to be the voice of caution when the British political class have rushed towards war in the past

Jun 17 09:53

‘We need points!’ US must invade Venezuela to scare Iran & N. Korea, Graham claims

Sen. Lindsey Graham has suggested President Trump "put military force on the table" by invading Venezuela (and possibly Cuba) in order to scare North Korea and Iran into doing what they're told. What could possibly go wrong?

"Give Cuba an ultimatum – without Cuba, Maduro doesn’t last one day – tell Cuba to get out of Venezuela. Do what Reagan did in Grenada – put military force on the table!" Graham told a Fox News host, going from zero to invasion in ten seconds flat in response to a question about how Trump should handle his foreign conflicts.

"We need points on the board," the South Carolina senator insisted. "Start with your own backyard… Fix Venezuela and everybody else will know you’re serious." North Korea and Iran, he implied, would fall right into line after Venezuela was put in its place.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Here's your rifle, Lindsey ...

Jun 17 08:41

GULF OF OMAN: UNCONVINCED EU FOREIGN MINISTERS CALL FOR INDEPENDENT INVESTIGATION AFTER US CLAIM IRAN IS BEHIND TANKER ATTACK

SOURCE: INDEPENDENT UK
EU foreign ministers remained unconvinced by US allegations that Iran was behind last week’s attack on two Gulf tankers as they arrived at a meeting on Monday.

There was strong support among EU countries for an independent UN investigation and calls for more evidence – with the UK relatively isolating in its support the Trump administration’s line.

One foreign minister invoked the spectre of US misuse of intelligence over Iraq as a reason for scepticism, as representatives of the 28 countries arrived at the council meeting.

The ministers will discuss the incident in the Gulf of Oman over lunch, with Sudan, trade policy with Cuba, and the situation in Venezuela also on the main agenda.

Heiko Maas, the German foreign minister, said the EU states “continue to gather information” while Dutch foreign minister Stef Blok said the Netherlands was “interested in any clarifications that can be made available”.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This "IRAN DID IT!" scenario is collapsing like a rogue souffle' most probably cooked by a combination of US and Israeli "False Flagmeisters", who were so convinced of their own codswallop, that they believed there was utterly no need for subtlety here, and never thought that there would be one moment of push back from any quarter, and particularly not the US's allies in Europe.

So I would like to politely remind all Foggy Bottomites currently in the bowels of power in DC, of a statement made by President George Bush, right before Iraq was invaded: he lied, on national TV, stating that "Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction".

After that, I was never able to believe anything any representative of the US government ever said, again, and probably never will in the future.

Our European friends are very right, to ask for hard evidence here.

And President Trump, a word, please; lying to the American people, or creating a false flag, because Israel wants the US to invade Iran, is no good reason, either to lie, create a false flag with which to justify that lie, or to do Bibi Netanyahu's bidding here.

An invasion of Iran, which has not done any bit of harm to this country, other than not selling all of its oil in US dollars, is going to create the optics that it is actually the United States which is a "rogue country", both incapable of keeping its promises, demonstrated very clearly, by the US's withdrawing from the P5+1 Agreement, and with an itchy "trigger finger" concerning invading sovereign countries for their resources, to make sure that those resources are only sold in US dollars.

And Mr. President, I am having an extraordinary difficult time, believing that this.... would be what you want your legacy, as President of this country, to be about.

Jun 16 11:07

Iran summons British ambassador in Tehran over UK siding with US on tankers incident

Tehran summoned the British ambassador to Iran, Rob Macaire, to its Foreign Ministry on Saturday, ISNA news agency has reported. The Iranian diplomats voiced their protest to Macaire over London’s backing of Washington’s claims that Tehran was behind the explosions on oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman earlier this week.

The ambassador was told that the UK’s anti-Iranian stance was “unacceptable” and that the British “follow-up policy,” which sees it agreeing with everything the US says without asking for proof, must cease.

Jun 16 10:40

Saudi crown prince calls for a 'decisive stand' against Iran as he blames regime for attacks on two oil tankers in the Gulf

Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman says his kingdom does not want war
But he 'will not hesitate to deal with threats to its people, its sovereignty or its vital interests', according to comments published by Saudi-owned newspaper.

The US have also claimed Iranians fired a missile at a US drone in the area hours before the attack but missed, an official told CNN.

The tankers were attacked in strikes south of the Strait of Hormuz, a vital shipping route and major transit route for oil.

'The kingdom does not want a war in the region but it will not hesitate to deal with any threats to its people, its sovereignty, or its vital interests,' he added.

Tehran and Washington have both said they have no interest in war - but this has done little to assuage concerns the arch foes could stumble in to conflict.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Well, coming from the Butcher of Yemen, (Prince Mohammed bin Salman), I hope this statement has calmed down those in the independent media, that they are in "no harm" from possibly having published an opinion about the incident which "did not carry water for either Washington's or Saudi Arabia's accusations".

And that pathetic little black and white, grainy image, allegedly showing an Iranian military personnel, pulling off the limpet mine from the ship?!?

HIGH SCHOOL folks; HIGH SCHOOL!!!!!!!

A clever middle-school kid with the right suite of software on their computer, could have pulled this off with ease.

But to both President Trump and Prince bin Salman, there is a question which, logically, must be both asked, and answered; why would the Iranian leadership attempt to do something so ham-fistedly, pig-headedly idiotic, when they understand that there are elements in both the American and Israeli governments are SALIVATING to find a "justification" for attacking it?!?

The short answer is, HELL, no!!

And gentlemen, another comment: the Iranian leadership may be many things; but one thing it is not, is stupid; and I also believe that they love their kids, just as much as Americans and Israelis love their children also.

War, here, is completely unjustifiable, and morally wrong.

Jun 16 09:53

Iran to 'take further measures' if JCPOA sides fail it: Rouhani

President Hassan Rouhani has renewed Iran's ultimatum to scale back its commitments under a 2015 multilateral nuclear deal in the absence of "a proper response" from the remaining signatories.

Rouhani said Saturday Iran's compliance with the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) has repeatedly been verified by the UN nuclear agency.

The president touched on the US pullout from the JCPOA and its reimposition of illegal sanctions on Tehran, saying Iran still believes that the remaining sides could play an important role in increasing regional global and stability if they honored their obligations.

"Obviously, Iran cannot unilaterally remain the sole party committed to the JCPOA," Rouhani told the 5th Conference on Interaction and Confidence-Building Measures in Asia (CICA) in Tajikistan's capital Dushanbe.

Jun 16 09:35

U.S. mainstream media fails to challenge Trump administration’s push toward war with Iran

The risky U.S. moves to provoke a war with Iran continue, and the American mainstream media is still transmitting the Trump administration’s views almost without challenge:

* The New York Times has run lengthy accounts about the alleged Iranian attack on oil tankers, but the paper buried the skepticism about the U.S. version lower in its articles.

* A respected Israeli expert, writing in Haaretz, calmly explained why “Iran is the immediate, but unlikely suspect” in the attacks. Nothing like his point of view has gotten prominent play in America.

* The most influential foreign affairs columnist in the world, Thomas Friedman of the New York Times, is still missing in action, a good 6 weeks after the Trump administration launched its latest effort to provoke Iran.

* None of the mainstream coverage explains that Israel is a big factor instigating the rising American hostility to Iran.

Jun 16 06:50

POMPEO UNVEILS NEW US STRATEGY OF ATTRIBUTING BLAME FOR ATTACKS BEFORE THEY HAVE HAPPENED

SOURCE: THE BLOG MIRE

Allergy Warning: May contain traces of Nuts & Boltons

The US Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, has blamed Iran for the deaths of 23 Swedish sailors in an attack on an oil tanker in the Strait of Hormuz. However, in what is said to be an unusual move, the incident referred to by Mr Pompeo hasn’t yet happened and no-one has died. Nonetheless, Mr Pompeo was adamant that Iran must bear responsibility for the future incident, and has vowed a strong response:

“It is the assessment of the US Government that Iran will be responsible for this terrible incident, which could well happen in the next few days or weeks. This possible future attack is a threat to international peace and security, a blatant assault on the freedom of navigation, and an unacceptable escalation of tension by Iran. We cannot let this possible attack go unanswered.”

Webmaster's Commentary: 

For whoever, or whatever collaboration created this, I have only 3 words: BRAVO, WELL DONE!!:-)

One does have to wonder, however, of perhaps our Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, has read the book "Minority Report" one too many times, and doesn't quite understand why the actual ending ... is not quite to his liking :-)

Jun 16 05:37

UK TO SEND ROYAL MARINES TO PERSIAN GULF TO PROTECT BRITISH SHIPS

As the pressure increases after Norwegian and Japanese oil tankers were attacked last week, Britain has joined the US, Saudi Arabia and others in accusing Iran of carrying out the attacks.

Jun 16 05:36

SAUDI CROWN PRINCE CALLS FOR 'DECISIVE STAND' ON TANKER ATTACKS

Bin Salman said the kingdom does not want a war in the region but would not hesitate to deal with any threat to its vital interests, amid heightened tensions with rival Iran.

Jun 16 05:35

Bernie Sanders warns against Trump's 'pretext for war' with Iran

US Democratic presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders has slammed Washington’s attempt to blame Iran for purported attacks on oil tanker vessels in the Sea of Oman, warning that the move is aimed at generating a “pretext for war.”

“The Gulf of Oman incident must not be used as a pretext for war with Iran,” said Sanders on Twitter, insisting that any military action on Iran would not only be illegal, but “an unmitigated disaster for the United States, Iran, the region, and the world.”

The development came as officials from multiple countries, the United Nations as well as one of the owners of the ships struck in the recent incidents have discounted or contradicted Washington’s claim accusing Iran of staging the attacks.

Jun 16 05:27

Japanese Tanker Owner Claims Crew Saw ‘Flying Objects’ Before Attack, Denies Ship Struck Mine

The Japanese company that owns the ‘Kokuka Courageous’ tanker has said its crew spotted “flying objects” before the attack in the Gulf of Oman, contradicting US claims that the vessel was damaged by a naval mine.

Yutaka Katada, president of Kokuka Sangyo, told reporters on Friday that sailors on board the ill-fated oil tanker observed “flying objects” just before the incident in which the ship caught fire and was badly damaged. The giant vessel was hit twice, first near the engine room and then on its starboard side.

He suggested that those flying objects could have been bullets, and called reports of striking a mine “false.” Both points at which the ship was damaged were above her waterline, which couldn’t be so if it had struck an underwater mine.

Jun 16 05:20

Iran to detail measures taken to reduce obligations under nuclear deal

Iran will release important details about the measures it has taken so far to suspend some of its commitments under a 2015 nuclear deal, in reciprocation of a move by the United States to unilaterally scrap that deal.

Tasnim news agency reported on Sunday that the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) would in a press briefing on Monday release “very important information” regarding the “limitless increase of Iran’s enriched uranium stockpile” as well as measures taken to prepare for the second phase of the scaling back of its obligations.

The briefing will be held at the Arak heavy water reactor facility on Monday, with more than 70 media personnel in attendance.

The latest measures undertaken by Iran to re-design the Arak research reactor and to increase the production of heavy water at the facility would also be detailed during the Monday session, the Tasnim report added.

Jun 16 05:19

US must invade Venezuela to scare Iran and North Korea: Senator Graham

A hawkish Republican senator has suggested that the United States should take military action against Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro so countries opposing the US are intimidated and surrender to Washington's demands.

To handle foreign conflicts “we need points on the board,” Senator Lindsey Graham, who is a close ally of President Donald Trump, was quoted as saying on Friday by Fox News.

The warmonger from South Carolina told Fox News that the US needed to resolve its issues with other countries using military actions.

Jun 15 17:38

'Not Enough': US Version Blaming Iran for Tanker Attacks Questioned by European Allies

The Pentagon earlier released a video, claiming to show an Iranian patrol boat removing a mine from the side one of the tankers targeted in the Gulf of Oman as "proof" of the US accusations that Tehran is behind the attacks. The Islamic Republic has strongly denied its involvement and urged Washington to stop false flag ops in the region.

Some European governments have refused to back the US allegations that Iran was responsible for the attacks on two oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman on 13 June.

German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas has, for instance, insisted that the footage made public by the US Central Command allegedly showing Iranian sailors removing an unexploded mine from one of the vessels' hull was insufficient to corroborate Washington's claims.

"The video is not enough. We can understand what is being shown, sure, but to make a final assessment, this is not enough for me", Maas told reporters on Friday.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I am at least somewhat hopeful, that our European allies would not believe the codswallop the US government was trying to sell them, on this painfully obvious "false flag."

Jun 15 15:09

Iran v USA – Oil Tanker Attacks

Jun 15 12:12

Scott Adams: Who Will Win Democrat Debates, Odds of War With Iran, Foreign Influence

Comments at:

President Trump is schooling America on how to be smart
Russian citizen offers you information, what’s your objective?
Iran should “trust their God” and allow their people internet access
MAJOR healthcare news…and it wasn’t reported by ANY network
Mexico can’t admit the cartels control their northern border area
Mexico can’t do anything about the cartels
Comparing social media traffic across platforms…topic related censoring?
Democrat debates:
Who is capable of breaking out as a star?
Who will see their poll numbers drop after the debates
“Poortown” concept for cheap water, cheap energy, improved homes
New standards to improve quality of life

Jun 15 10:02

POMPEO UNVEILS NEW US STRATEGY OF ATTRIBUTING BLAME FOR ATTACKS BEFORE THEY HAVE HAPPENED

The US Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, has blamed Iran for the deaths of 23 Swedish sailors in an attack on an oil tanker in the Strait of Hormuz. However, in what is said to be an unusual move, the incident referred to by Mr Pompeo hasn’t yet happened and no-one has died. Nonetheless, Mr Pompeo was adamant that Iran must bear responsibility for the future incident, and has vowed a strong response.

Jun 15 09:13

Jeremy Hunt brands Labour leader 'pathetic' over Iran comments

The foreign secretary has branded Jeremy Corbyn "pathetic", after he questioned whether the UK had "credible evidence" Iran was behind attacks on two oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman.

Jeremy Hunt said responsibility for Thursday's attacks "almost certainly" lies with the Iranian regime.

The Labour leader said the UK should "ease tensions" in the region rather than "fuel a military escalation".

Mr Hunt criticised Mr Corbyn for not backing British intelligence.

Jun 15 06:58

Beyond Blaming Iran, Trump and Aides Divided on Next Step: Trump continues to say he wants diplomacy, not war

Given nothing more than a grainy video that doesn’t show much of anything, and a couple of tankers burning at sea, the Trump Administration has proven themselves united in a way rarely seen, declaring Iran wholly and directly to blame.

That’s where the unity appears to end, however. Officials are always keen to blame Iran for anything that might stick, and as for what to do after that, they all seem deeply divided, and their talking points vary wildly.

President Trump was quick to blame Iran, citing the dubious Centcom video as proof, and declaring that they are “in deep, deep trouble.” Beyond that, however, he reiterated that he wants to negotiate with Iran, and that he’s “in no rush” to actually have the talks. He also continues to say he’s not interested in a war.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

There are two companion pieces, also appearing at antiwar.com today, and they are:

US SecDef wants to focus on building global consensus against Iran after tanker attacks

and MIKE POMPEO SAID CONGRESS DOESN’T NEED TO APPROVE WAR WITH IRAN. 2020

It would seem, to an impartial observer, that both men are working just as hard as they can for Israel, to insure that the Israeli-desired US/Iranian war happens right on cue, to give Netanyahu the best possible "lift", in advance of the snap Israeli elections in September.

So, I have a question: why have both men not registered as "foreign agents", in service to Israel?!?

Because right now, I would politely suggest that their goals and objectives, have absolutely nothing to do with the welfare of the American people, but everything to do with the sustaining of the current geopolitical power structure in Tel Aviv. That is just the reality.

And please remember, unlike the image of "Poor Little Israel" in which many American and Israeli politicians, like to frame Israel's current military capabilities,as though this country was completely and utterly incapable of taking care of themselves, this country is bristling with nuclear arms, and other weapons, courtesy of, you guessed it, the American Taxpayer!!!

And because Israel refuses to sign the NNPT (which Iran has, BTW), and allow their nuclear weapons to be inspected, they are, theoretically forbidden to get any weapons or money from the US under the Symington Amendment; but, of course, with Israel, is always that "special arrangement", which allows our politicians to break the law with impunity, and give it an embarrassment of riches, in terms of money, and new weapons.

So to sum up, Secretary of State Pompeo, and Presidential Advisor Bolton, if Israel believes Iran to be an "existential threat", let Israel take care of it militarily, because they can.

This is absolutely not our fight.

And should the US decide to fight Iran, what is to prevent Russia from stepping into the fray on Iran's side, seeing how well they have done in Syria, getting rid of the US trained/funded jihadis?!?

Gentlemen, right now, the US military doesn't have the weaponry; the funding; the troop strength; or the manufacturing to insure a positive outcome to any war against either Russia or Iran.

Oh, and BTW: when have you decided to bring back the draft?!? Just checking, gentlemen, just checking.

Jun 15 05:55

US GOV NARRATIVE BLAMING IRAN FOR OIL TANKER ATTACKS FALLS APART IN HOURS

OURCE: THE GRAYZONE
The Trump administration’s claims Iran attacked oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman were quickly debunked, with the ship’s crew saying it “was hit by a flying object.” But the US disrupted important Iranian diplomatic efforts at the Shanghai Cooperation Organization summit in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan.
BY BEN NORTON
The Donald Trump administration’s evidence-less accusations against Iran have fallen apart within a matter hours.

But these US allegations did manage to disrupt an important meeting of Asian leaders at the Shanghai Cooperation Organization summit, where Tehran was hoping to make diplomatic breakthroughs to ease a crippling American economic blockade.

On Thursday, June 13, two oil tankers traveling through the Gulf of Oman on their way to Japan suffered from mysterious explosions. The cause of the incident was not clear.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Violent acts like this, do not happen for only one reason, like stunting Iran's chances for anything to come out the the conference at the Shanghai Cooperation Organization summit in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan; the US and Israel thought such charges would be a slam-dunk, and off the American people could be lied into yet another war, with absolute stupidity, as to how the US got there.

But the Vampire-like "Kill Iran" monster, created courtesy of the US and Israel, is not dead, but only sleeping for awhile.

As hard as FAUX News was pushing this yesterday, when you would get segments about this both at the top and bottom of the hour, it was painfully obvious, that the US government was going to see if this "trial balloon", would actually work with those polled, or was going to die an untimely death. It looks as though the overnights, may have put the issue of a potential war with Iran, on a back burner, at least for this second.

But we all have to stay awake, and alert; Netanyahu is in deep kim chee at home, for not being able to form a coalition, which led to the dissolution of the Knesset, to followed by a snap election in September.

We're half-way through June right now, and give or take, 90 days from that election.

If Netanyahu really wants to look "butch" for his constituents, he is going to have to find a way to create a false flag the US government doesn't see coming, to get the US to respond militarily before the elections, to give him "gravitas", at being able to lie the leader of the free world into yet another senseless, thoroughly avoidable, stupid war.

Jun 15 05:32

US OFFICIALS SAY TANKER CREW "DETAINED" - WHILE RUSSIA THANKS IRAN FOR "RESCUING" ITS NATIONALS

SOURCE: ZEROHEDGE

Just after his trip to Tehran where he met with Iran's president Rouhani as well as Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, during which a Japanese owned tanker was attacked in the nearby Gulf of Oman on Thursday along with another international vessel, Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe condemned the suspected attack in official statements.

Speaking to reporters Friday he said: “Japan adamantly condemns the act that threatened a Japanese ship, no matter who attacked,” and further urged “all related countries” to avoid any "accidental confrontation" or an escalation of tensions.

The Trump ally also spoke to the US president by phone on Friday, reportedly briefing him on his visit to Iran, Abe confirmed in his remarks, though without detailing what he conveyed to the White House. Trump had previously said during a Fox & Friends telephone interview that "it’s probably got essentially Iran written all over it."

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Mr. President, a word for the day, please; and today, that word... is logic.

What in the name of heaven, would Iran want to do something which would give the US and Israeli, the motive, and "justification" for any kind of carnage in the Gulf?!?

The short answer, sir,is that they would not.

Jun 14 11:00

OIL TANKER ATTACKS ECHO PERSIAN GULF'S 1980S 'TANKER WAR'

Mysterious attacks on oil tankers near the strategic Strait of Hormuz this week show how one of the world's crucial chokepoints for global energy supplies can be easily targeted, 30 years after the U.S. Navy and Iran were entangled in a similarly shadowy conflict called the "Tanker War."

Jun 14 10:09

Twitter deletes thousands of accounts tied to Iran, seeks to end false info campaigns

Twitter Inc on Thursday said it removed thousands of accounts linked to coordinated, state-backed activities it believes were from the Iranian government and archived them to its public database launched last year.

In the latest purge of information, the company said it believes 4,779 accounts were associated or backed by Iran.

Jun 14 09:33

11 REASONS Why You Should TRAVEL TO IRAN

Jun 14 09:27

Strait of Hormuz and the risk of uncontrolled escalation

The Strait of Hormuz, the narrow shipping lane between Iran and Oman named after the fabulously wealthy ancient kingdom of Ormus, has fascinated oil traders since the Iranian revolution in 1979.

Iran has periodically threatened to close the strait to enemy shipping, while the United States and its allies have pledged to keep it open and maintain freedom of navigation, by force if necessary.

The strait has become a symbolic flashpoint in the region-wide confrontation and indirect conflict between Iran on one side and the United States and Saudi Arabia on the other.

Two oil tankers were attacked and left adrift on Thursday in the Gulf of Oman, just south of the entrance to the strait, stoking fears of a new confrontation between Iran and the United States.

Jun 14 09:19

SERIES OF MYSTERIOUS ATTACKS ON OIL TANKERS AROUND PERSIAN GULF

After the incident, Iranian state media reported that Iranian sailors had rescued all 44 crew members of the tankers. This statement contradicts to CENTCOM claims that said that 21 mariners from the M/V Kokuka Courageous, were rescued by USS Bainbridge.

There are no confirmed details regarding what actually happened. Mainstream media outlets reported different scenarios that caused the incident: from a torpedo attack to naval mines. Nonetheless, the common point of all these speculations was that Iran was somehow responsible for the incident.

Jun 14 09:08

Gulf of Oman attacks: Only those who want escalation will benefit

A key protagonist in this context of heightened tensions between Iran and its Gulf neighbours has been the Trump administration, whose policy of “maximum pressure” on Tehran aims to extract further concessions from the Islamic Republic with regards to its nuclear enrichment programme.

After a year of weaponised narratives directed by neo-conservative hawks in Washington, Abu Dhabi, Riyadh and Tel Aviv against Iran, Trump had hoped that the time was ripe to ask Tehran to return to the negotiating table. But as the revolutionary regime in Tehran had to show resolve after being humiliated by the US unilateral withdrawal from the nuclear deal and reimposition of painful sanctions, Trump’s “maximum pressure” policy never had any hope of success.

Jun 14 09:04

Today's Attacks On Ships In The Gulf Of Oman Are Not In Iran's Interest - Or Are They?

Even while Iran rejects negotiations with the U.S. as long as the U.S. keeps up its sanctions, it has no interest in disturbing the current phase of diplomacy. Iran seems to have nothing to win from these attacks.

Is someone else out to nearly literately torpedo the current mediation attempts?

Jun 14 09:02

Mike Pompeo Blames Iran for Tanker Attack Without Single Shred of Evidence

In a press conference that immediately evoked memories of the lead-up to the 2003 invasion of Iraq, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Thursday claimed Iran was behind alleged attacks on two oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman without presenting one single shred of evidence.

"This assessment is based on intelligence, the weapons used, the level of expertise needed to execute the operation, recent similar Iranian attacks on shipping, and the fact that no proxy group operating in the area has the resources and proficiency to act with such a high-degree of sophistication," said Pompeo, who did not provide any details on the intelligence he cited.

After asserting Iran was also behind a litany of attacks prior to Thursday's tanker incident—once again without presenting any evidence—Pompeo said that,"Taken as a whole, these unprovoked attacks present a clear threat to international peace and security."

Jun 14 08:39

Trump shock: USA told it will LOSE WAR WITH IRAN, and here’s why

DONALD TRUMP’S USA boasts the most powerful armies the world has ever seen – but today military experts warned they would NEVER beat Iran in a military conflict even as the possibility of a hot war between Iran and the USA increased as British and US servicemen raced to the aid of two oil-tankers attacked off the Iranian coast in the Gulf of Oman.

Jun 14 08:35

Oil tanker attacks: Russia warns against blaming Iran

Russia on Thursday called for normalization with Iran and warned against accusing Tehran of attacks on oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman.

In a news conference in the capital Moscow, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said the situation should not be used to escalate tensions with Iran.

"We need measures to normalize the situation around Iran, we need to calmly and impartially deal with what happened, not to make hasty conclusions. [...] We have recently seen a growing campaign of political, psychological and military pressure on Iran," he said.

"I would take the opportunity to warn against hasty conclusions, against attempts to lay the blame at the door of those we don't like," Ryabkov added.

Jun 14 08:18

Seven Reasons To Be Highly Skeptical Of The Gulf Of Oman Incident

In a move that surprised exactly zero people, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has wasted no time scrambling to blame Iran for damage done to two sea vessels in the Gulf of Oman on Thursday, citing exactly zero evidence.

“This assessment is based on intelligence, the weapons used, the level of expertise needed to execute the operation, recent similar Iranian attacks on shipping, and the fact that no proxy group operating in the area has the resources and proficiency to act with such a high-degree of sophistication,” Pompeo told the press in a statement.

“The United States will defend its forces, interests, and stand with our partners and allies to safeguard global commerce and regional stability. And we call upon all nations threatened by Iran’s provocative acts to join us in that endeavor,” Pompeo concluded before hastily shambling off, taking exactly zero questions.

Here are seven reasons to be extremely skeptical of everything Pompeo said:

Jun 14 07:50

Dire Straits Of Hormuz

Iran is suffocating under US sanctions, a known instigator of such actions via proxies, and threatening the EU with walking away from the nuclear deal if they won’t help it out. An attack like this would be incredibly reckless…unless they are desperate enough to up the ante to see if a war-averse White House will press ahead with another ruinous Middle East conflict ahead of the 2020 elections and in the face of a Cold War with China. If that is the case then expect more provocations and more Risk Off even as Iran calls this all “beyond suspicious”, “economic terrorism”, and “sabotage diplomacy”.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Israel's Netanyahu had to disband the Knesset after the last election, because he couldn't create a coalition of parties which worked, and next snap elections will come in September of this year.

With the corruption trials looming ahead of him, coupled with his failure to hold the Knesset together, Netanyahu is now a geopolitically wounded candidate; and and political candidates are at their most reckless when they are wounded by a series of events, as he has been.

My hunch, is that Israel is looking at creating some huge false flag, to be blamed on Iran, and will absolutely dwarf the harm caused by the other bombings we have seen so far in the Gulf of Hormuz.

Netanyahu is feeling the pressure of time, so in working backward from the next Israeli election, he is going to attempt to time this false flag when it will do the most good for his candidacy; but that is still very hard to determine.

With the US showing a grainy video of an alleged Iranian attempting to get non-working mine off the bottom of a ship, regurgitated by the talking heads at very close to the top of the hour, I am thinking that Netanyahu will want to do this sooner rather than later; he may well believe that with the pressure of the snap election in September, he doesn't have time to wait.

I would suspect that the Foggy Bottomites will be doing some poling, during this weekend, to see what the optics may look like, with a huge, allegedly Iranian false flag, followed by an American war against the country. I hope and pray, that the optics will be horrific.

And as I have seen in recent years, just becomes something is so ham-fistedly, pig headedly stupid for the US government to do, is no guarantee that they won't do it.

Jun 14 07:21

Lira Slides After Turkey Vows It Will Retaliate To US Sanctions Over S-400

Two weeks ago, when Trump started rolling out tariffs left and right as a political punishment weapon for any sovereigns who presented hurdles to
Next on Trump’s train of terrifying tariffs: Turkey.

The reason is simple: Turkey's now official stance that it would proceed with concluding the Russian S-400 missile deal despite vocal opposition from both the US president and Congress. And now, Turkey, too, is bracing for what now appears inevitable as it refuses to budge on its commitment to the Kremlin.

Overnight, Turkey said it would hold firm in its commitment to honor its purchase of Russian air defense systems, warning the US that it is prepared to take "reciprocal steps" in reply to any sanctions imposed by Washington, effectively admitting that sanctions by the White House are only a matter of time.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Mr. President, a word, please; the more you inflame a country, in terms of attempting to punish it for its choices of weapons defenses, the more that country will turn toward other countries whose policies it feels are more in line with its own.

What you have done here, is make Turkey ripe for acquisition by a Iranian/Russian sphere of influence. So sir, I must ask: was this your design objective?!?

Or is this yet another of the "unintended consequences" of your foreign policy failures with the tariffs so far?!?

Jun 14 07:10

Japanese Tanker Owner Denies Ship Hit By Mine, Says Crew Saw "Flying Objects" Before Attack

For a moment on Thursday, it appeared that the US Navy had produced the 'smoking gun' to which Secretary of State Mike Pompeo had alluded during his statement from earlier in the day: CENTCOM footage which the Navy said purported to show Iran's IRGC 'caught in the act' of trying to remove an unexploded mine from the Kokuka Courageous, one of the two tankers damaged in Thursday's attacks.

CENTCOM said the video it released showed the IRGC removing an unexploded limpet mine from the side of one of the tankers, suggesting Tehran had sought to remove evidence from the scene.

After the video's release, Iran continued to deny any involvement in the attacks. And perhaps now we know why.

Because in comments that cast the entire narrative promulgated by the US in doubt, Yutaka Katada, the president of Kokuka Sangyo, the owner and operator of the Kokuka Courageous, said Friday that he doesn't completely believe Washington's version of events.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The US narrative on this, has more holes than does a pasta colander; the US should walk away, with as much grace as humanly possible; however, they are doubling down on their claims this morning,continually having looped the very grainy video that a clever 10 year old could have crash-edited together, as evidence that Iran moved a mine from one tanker.

I would far more believe President Katada, president of and owner of the vessel of the ship, in terms of what he believed he saw, and his naval background tells me that he is a credible witness; this means, of course, you will never hear another word out of him, except in the Independent media, like WRH.

Jun 14 06:59

Sabotage diplomacy: Zarif says no need to be ‘clairvoyant’ to see US ‘plan B’ for Iran

Washington’s claim that Tehran carried out the attack on two oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman is unsurprising, Iran’s FM has said, warning that the US has resorted to “Plan B” to sabotage the Islamic Republic’s diplomatic efforts.

Mohammad Javad Zarif claimed that the US had “jumped to make allegations against Iran [without] a shred of factual or circumstantial evidence,” describing the move as an attempt to demonize Tehran on the world stage and legitimize Washington’s unilateral sanctions against his country.

“I warned of exactly this scenario a few months ago, not because I’m clairvoyant, but because I recognize where the #B_Team is coming from,” Zarif tweeted, using the derogatory term he coined to described the Trump administration.

Jun 14 05:51

Convenient “Tanker Attacks” as US Seeks War with Iran

“…it would be far more preferable if the United States could cite an Iranian provocation as justification for the airstrikes before launching them. Clearly, the more outrageous, the more deadly, and the more unprovoked the Iranian action, the better off the United States would be. Of course, it would be very difficult for the United States to goad Iran into such a provocation without the rest of the world recognizing this game, which would then undermine it.” (emphasis added)

– Brookings Institution, “Which Path to Persia?” 2009

All Too Convenient

This news of “attacked” oil tankers near the Strait of Hormuz blamed by the US on Iran – comes all too conveniently on the heels of additional steps taken by Washington to pressure Iran’s economy and further undermine the Iranian government.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

One has to wonder why the US and Israel continue to trot out the same old "game plans" which had worked so well as the justifications for former wars, like the war in Viet Nam, Iraq, or Afghanistan, but cannot possibly work now?!?

Well, let's say that President Bush's regime changed all of that.

And the reality is that, ever since President Bush went on his savage media campaign against Saddam Hussein and Iraq, lying to Americans and the world, that Hussein had "weapons of mass destruction", which Bush absolutely knew were not there, thinking Americans could no longer believe or trust anything this government says.

Thinking Americans understand that what drives the trajectory of US foreign policy, is its ability to expropriate foreign resources, to which it has absolutely no moral right; insure that the government of that country is "US/Western centric", and that those resources are only sold in US dollars.

So, there you have it, very neatly and simply packaged.

And until, and unless, the US loses another major war, this will simply keep continuing,no matter the utterly ruinous costs to our country.

The American people have absolutely zero choice, because no matter how many times we vote in national elections, our two Presidential candidates have been thoroughly vetted by the military industrial complex, the large corporations which have "specific expectations" about what they will get, by going along along with one of the two candidates.

So we vote, yet absolutely nothing changes, except the locales of the wars; the catastrophic slip in most of our standards of living; the infrastructure is left to crumble; our Vets wind up sleeping rough in our sleep; our "education system" is complete rubbish, and families living in their cars, have become the "new normal".

Welcome to the 21st Century's Unhinged, Surveilled, State of Amerika.

Jun 14 05:29

Saudi Arabia says it has stepped up readiness level, committed to supply oil markets

Khalid al-Falih condemned the strikes against the tankers — one of which carried methanol from Saudi Arabia — in the Gulf of Oman, which followed an attack last month on four vessels, including two Saudi oil tankers, off the United Arab Emirates.

He said the energy ministry of the world’s top oil exporter and state oil giant Aramco had raised the level of readiness to deal with “such aggressive terrorist acts” and reaffirmed the kingdom’s commitment to the reliable supply of oil to international markets, the state news agency SPA said.

American and Saudi officials have blamed Iran for the May 12 sabotage of tankers off the UAE’s Fujairah bunkering hub that lies outside the Strait of Hormuz, a charge Tehran denies.

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said that the United States has assessed, based on intelligence, type of weapons used and level of expertise needed, that Iran is responsible for Thursday’s attacks on tankers in the Gulf of Oman.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Khalid al-Falih,and Secretary of State Pompeo,until you have some tangible proof, other than a grainy video a 10 year old child could have shot, you have utterly nothing with which to accuse Iran on this.

Jun 14 05:06

Why would Iran attack two tankers near the Strait of Hormuz?

In a brief press conference Thursday, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo expressed no doubt about who attacked two tankers in the Gulf of Oman, saying Iran was “responsible for the attacks.”

He did not, however, immediately offer any proof of the intelligence behind that assessment.

The attack certainly bears the hallmark and capabilities of previous aggressive actions undertaken by Iran and its paramilitary cohorts in the Persian Gulf.

But questions abound over who actually stands to benefit most from an attack in a region beset by violence and convoluted proxy conflicts raged between and Iran and Saudi Arabia and its allies.

Was the attack carried out by Iran, or other Gulf States seeking to sow conflict ? or did the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps operate outside of Tehran’s directives to further its own agenda?

Webmaster's Commentary: 

the short answer is, they wouldn't

Jun 14 05:02

Iran's Air Defence Chief: 'We Are Warning the Enemy…Move as Far Away As You Can From Our Border

Strained relations between Washington and Tehran got worse last month after the US parked a carrier strike group in the Arabian Sea and built up its presence in the Middle East while accusing Iran of involvement in the sabotage of four tankers off the coast of the United Arab Emirates.

Iranian Air Defence Force commander Brig. Gen. Alireza Sabahifard has urged Tehran's adversaries to keep their distance from the country's frontiers.

"We are warning the enemy: there is no safe zone for extraterritorial military aircraft in Iranian skies... Even approaching Iran's borders would be met with a strong response. Thus, I advise you to move as much away [from Iran's borders] as you can," the commander said, as quoted by PressTV.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Unfortunately for General Sabahifard, the reason the US and aligned forces have kept a respectful distance, is that optics demand a far greater "false flag" to be blamed on Iran, than what has happened recently.

Jun 14 04:58

Iranian Mission to UN 'Categorically Rejects' US Claims Regarding Gulf of Oman Attacks

In a Thursday statement, Iran's mission to the United Nations announced the country rejects the US claim that Tehran was responsible for attacks on two oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman earlier in the day.

"Iran categorically rejects the US unfounded claim with regard to 13 June oil tanker incidents and condemns it in the strongest possible terms," reads the mission statement.

Tehran's remarks follow US Central Command's deployment of the US Navy destroyer USS Mason to the Gulf of Oman after US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo labeled Iran responsible for torpedo attacks on the oil tankers Kokuka Courageous and Front Altair.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

So now, we have the USS Bainbridge, and the USS Mason heading over to the Gulf of Oman?!?

Jun 14 04:53

Oil Prices Spike After Gulf of Oman Tanker Incident

Oil prices spiked on Thursday after two vessels were seemingly attacked in the Gulf of Oman, one of the world’s most important shipping lanes.

Fears of military conflict between Washington and Tehran in the aftermath of the incident involving The Front Altair and the Kokuka Courageous tankers sent the oil price up over 4.5%, with Brent crude hitting $62.64 per barrel and US crude touching $53.45, dragging oil away from the five-month lows struck last night.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This was perfectly predictable, given the tensions in the region.

Jun 14 04:50

US sends destroyer to Gulf of Oman tanker incident site as Pentagon says ‘no interest’ in new war

The US has dispatched another warship to the Gulf of Oman, but says it has “no interest” in engaging in a new Middle East conflict. The State Department accused Iran of attacking two tankers there, which Tehran denies.
Guided missile destroyer USS Mason will join the destroyer USS Bainbridge on station near the Kokuka Courageous, a damaged tanker just outside the Persian Gulf, the US Central Command (CENTCOM) said on Thursday, adding that “Iranian small boats” were spotted in the area.

No interference with USS Bainbridge, or its mission, will be tolerated.

The Florida-based combat command called the attacks on tankers “a clear threat to international freedom of navigation and freedom of commerce.”

"We have no interest in engaging in a new conflict in the Middle East,” CENTCOM added. “We will defend our interests, but a war with Iran is not in our strategic interest, nor in the best interest of the international community.”

Webmaster's Commentary: 

And we have a sister article, also from rt.com on the incident, and the dispatching of the USS Bainbridge. And notice regarding the Bainbridge, the following statement is made: " No interference with USS Bainbridge, or its mission, will be tolerated."

Folks, I don't know about you, but to me, this telegraphs that something wicked this way comes, courtesy of those whose responsibility it is for creating false flags in both the US and Israel. I don't know how long it will take the USS Bainbridge to reach its destination,but I would expect that shortly before this happens, we will be looking at another incident, to blame again on Iran.

And the title of this companion article is Backing Pompeo's ‘Gulf of Tonkin’ incident is a massive anti-Iran online propaganda campaign

And it goes on to state: "Twitter has announced that it is removing 4,779 accounts associated or backed by Tehran, the latest strike in the ongoing anti-Iran campaign perfectly timed to coincide with the attack on two oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was already blaming Iran hours after the incident, offering not a shred of proof aside from a few other dubious incidents in the Middle East that the US has previously pinned on Iran, without evidence.

Even the mainstream media has initially been reluctant to take his word for it, mostly because the narrative is so improbable. Japan's PM Shinzo Abe was in Tehran, promising to use his "utmost effort" to de-escalate tensions, when as if on cue, a Japanese ship was hit along with a Norwegian vessel."

I am almost certain, that something horrific is going to happen on, or right before, the USS Bainbridge reaches the Persian Gulf; the next couple of days should tell the tale.

Jun 14 04:34

SAUDIS RELEASE DRAMATIC VIDEO OF "IRAN-ORDERED" HOUTHI MISSILE ATTACK ON AIRPORT TERMINAL

SOURCE: ZEROHEDGE
Amid fast escalating tensions in the Persian Gulf surrounding Thursday morning's mysterious "attacks" on two tankers which US officials are already blaming on Iran, Saudi Arabia has released CCTV footage of this week's previously reported Yemeni Houthi missile attack on a civilian airport terminal in the southern part of the kingdom.

"The Iran-backed Houthi terrorist militia, through its media, claimed full responsibility for this terrorist act using a cruise missile – as they claim- which constitutes a clear recognition and full responsibility for the targeting of civilians and civilian places that are subject to special protection under international humanitarian law, this may amount to a war crime,” a spokesman for the Saudi-led coalition, Col. Turki al-Malki, said in an official statement.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Let's do something amazing, and actually think, for a moment, can we please?!?

What is the logic of an Iranian move like this, when its leadership is desperately attempting to stave off potential attacks from Israel; Saudi Arabia; and the US?!?

The short answer is, there is zero logic in this move; and although Iranian leadership may be many things, stupid... is not one of them.

Jun 13 15:07

Tankers Hit in Sea of Oman: Iran Helps Rescue 23 Crew Members, U.S. Blames Iran For The Attack

Two tanker ships reportedly carrying Japanese goods were attacked in Sea of Oman on Thursday while Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe was meeting with Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei to try and deescalate tensions between Iran and the US.

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