Iran

Trump's Speech Confirms That Soleimani Strike Didn't Prevent Imminent Attack or Make Americans Safer

But what has the saber-rattling of the past week accomplished for the United States?

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In the aftermath of the assassination of Iranian general Qassem Soleimani and an Iranian attack on American military bases in Iraq, President Donald Trump signaled Wednesday morning that he's prepared to step back from the brink of war.

"We want you to have a future, and a great future," Trump said, speaking directly to the Iranian government and the people of Iran. "The United States is ready to embrace peace with all who seek it."

This is unequivocally good news. While Trump did not offer to open direct negotiations with Iran and spoke glowingly about the power of the American military—all while being flanked by uniformed military officials—his Wednesday morning address seems to suggest that the immediate danger of open war has, for now, been reduced ever so slightly. Iran's government has already expressed a desire to avoid further escalation, so you can expect the president's supporters to claim that developments in the past 24 hours vindicate Trump's reckless and unpredictable version of Ronald Reagan's "peace through strength" theory.

But once the threat of war has mostly passed, observers should start asking: What exactly has the saber-rattling of the past week accomplished for the United States?

For starters, it should be obvious by now that the most immediate justification for Soleimani's assassination was either an outright lie or a strategic miscalculation. Killing Soleimani did not prevent an attack on American troops in Iraq; if anything, it appears to have triggered an attack, though thankfully there were no casualties.

It's telling that the White House has already largely dispensed with the notion that the assassination was conducted in order to stop some impending attack. On Wednesday, Trump called Soleimani "the world's top terrorist," and talked up Soleimani's history of organizing and planning militia attacks that have killed and maimed American troops in Iraq over the course of the past decade-plus. As other observers have noted, it's now fairly obvious that Soleimani's killing was about vengeance, not deterrence.

One could argue that killing Soleimani removed a dangerous opponent from the battlefield and that Soleimani's absence will weaken Iran's hand in Iraq, Syria, and elsewhere in the wider Middle East long-term. That's certainly possible—plausible, even—but it probably overstates the extent to which Soleimani was dictating Iran's foreign policy and  underestimates the resilience of the Iranian regime. It also ignores the potential dangers of using assassinations as a tool of foreign policy. And it gives the Trump administration credit for a strategic angle that even the administration itself has not publicly claimed. Indeed, the White House has tried to justify killing Soleimani in the present tense ("imminent threat") and past tense (retribution for killing Americans in Iraq), but never in such a hypothetical, future-looking way.

What else has the assassination accomplished? It's given the Iranian regime an even stronger incentive to obtain nuclear weapons as a deterrent against future American aggression. It's exposed, once again, the extent to which Trump has alienated America's allies. It's caused the United States to deploy more troops to the Middle East, thus making any eventual withdraw during Trump's first term even less likely than it already was. And it's given the Iranian government a martyr to use for domestic political purposes in rallying anti-American sentiment.

Yes, Trump's speech on Tuesday has reduced the chance of war with Iran. No, this was not a successful week for U.S. foreign policy, or for the man in charge of it.

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  1. Well, that’s a stupid take

    1. It takes a great deal of intent to come up with these takes. I get it. You don’t like Trump. But you really, really have to cherry-pick to come up with that analysis.

      Remember when Trump was weak because he didn’t strike back at Iran? Remember when it showed that he didn’t know what he was doing when he called off a strike that would kill low level Iranian soldiers?

      So you think this accomplished nothing, and was a knee jerk reaction taken in vengence?

      Let’s look at what really is happening. The Iranians have been ratcheting up their terrorist and militant activities across the region. They have begun attacking the oil industry in shipping and production. Remember, a lot of their activity on that front was about the west blocking their aid to their terrorist allies in Syria, Israel and Lebanon. Trump loudly and publicly called off a strike to destroy a base in Iran.

      You put that in the “erratic” box. Iran puts it in the “warning, here’s what I can do with a phone call” box.

      Then they begin escalating their strategy of proxy conflicts with us in Iraq. We even know why…. because Iraqi citizens are getting fed up with their corrupt government and with Iranian interference in their country. They have been protesting in the streets, camped out in Tahrir square for the last 4 months. Reuters reported that the Iranian controlled Iraqi militant groups had a meeting with Soleimani where their strategy was outlined… to provoke conflicts with the US in order to deflect Iraqi anger on to the US.

      After taking those actions, including attacks on the Embassy and rocket attacks that wounded and killed americans, Soleimani came to Baghdad to meet with the military commander from Hezbollah who was carrying out those attacks.

      Revenge?

      You have the two top guys in a terrorist campaign aimed at US assets and designed to strengthen the hand of Iran in subverting the Iraq government, meeting in one place, riding in one car….. How often are you imagining that this happens? Is your version of their world one in which those two have coffee in Baghdad every week, and we can just pop by any time?

      That’s what you call a target of opportunity. There’s no way this was planned out way in advance. Clearly we got some intel that they would be there, so a meeting was called and the order given. If they were planning on starting World War Three as you deluded partisans believe, Trump would not have been hanging out at his resort in Florida. They would have been hunkered down in the situation room in DC.

      They took a very measured and very targeted response in a manner that probably would not have presented itself again for months, if ever. The response from Iran shows that they heard the message loud and clear. They responded in kind.. with a little dangerous saber rattling, but no more. That is an acknowledgement that they understand that a line has been drawn and they are going to move back behind it for a while.

      None of the media circus and DNC talking point demands have anything to do with it. All of the requirements you are talking about were invented out of whole cloth by the media and democrat politicians. They became a part of the discussion because of questions pressed by the media. The White House clearly doesn’t want to tell you exactly how that opportunity arose, so they are not even talking about it.

      And for some bizarre reason, you guys are deluded into thinking that all of the talking head bluster has anything at all to do with it. It doesn’t. Chris Cuomo had no input of any kind in this. He doesn’t set the legal requirements. He doesn’t even understand the issues at play. Why would you turn to those idiots for your lead on analyzing the situation.

      Trump gave them multiple chances over the last year or so, refraining from taking military action. They seem to have taken this as weakness. Then he blew up their boss. They no longer seem to take his restraint as weakness. They just declared very loudly that they want out. They are pounding their chest on TV and claiming victory, after having done absolutely nothing. Trump heard what they are saying. He won. They know it. He knows it.

      Now they can negotiate a new understanding. CNN, MSNBC and Adam Schiff won’t be a party to those negotiations. So we really don’t need their analysis as to why it really means that Iran was magnanimous in avoiding conflict with a crazy moron who is trying desperately to start WWIII. And I really expect something a little more intelligent from Reason.

      Somebody call Virginia up and see if she can write something up for us.

      1. That about sums it up. Why reason is incapable of writing the pretty obvious and true points you make is beyond me.

        1. unreason and Iran knows we hit Iran where it hurts and hard.

          Soleimani is no Yamamoto but to the Iranians he is. Soleimani has been instrumental in well planned attacks that have sometimes led to their desired effects. He has planned operations that led to hundreds of Americans killed. He might be the best Iran has but he has military planning and diplomatic talent.

          He got careless and gave the USA a shot at killing multiple enemies to the USA. Instead of P-38’s used in Operation Vengeance, the USA used a drone.

          1. Wait, It’s all the Trump cocksuckers lined up in one comment flow. I don’t want this gay porn.

            1. Stop using my name fake plug, it was repossessed for your failure to pay your bet and you agreed to it.

              1. How are you enjoying the Trump presidency so far? I am. He’ll BE your president for the next five years. In November, he’ll be re-elected with a majority REP Congress, PLUS he’ll appoint two more SCOTUS picks. Gonna be a rough coupla years for you, huh? Good. Enjoy your buttplug.

                1. I think you meant to reply to the other Buttplug. This one is ok with Trump.

          2. The only question that remains now is whether Iran will test its’ first nuclear bomb before or after the 2020 USA elections.
            The Iranian ballistic missile attack on two bases in Iraq used by American forces, probably eliminated any debate within the leadership of Iran as to how to proceed with their nuclear program. Ballistic missiles without nuclear warheads are not useful military weapons. Their speed of thousands of miles per hour is such that they can only come within a few miles of a target. That is perfectly good for delivering a thermonuclear bomb to a target like a large city, but essentially worthless if armed only with conventional explosives against small hardened targets like bunkers and military bases. That is why the US military does not employ ballistic missiles without nuclear warheads.

            That the 17 Iranian ballistic missiles caused no casualties and only minimal damage demonstrated to Iran that it now has no way to effectively attack American military targets. Iran does have precision guided ordinance such as cruise missiles and drones, such as those that were used in their attach on the Saudi oil facilities. However, the chance of any Iranian cruise missiles and/or drones traveling at only hundreds of miles per hour penetrating a defended American position or naval combatant is zero. Likewise, Iranian military aircraft would have no chance against advanced American fighters or air defense. Without any air support Iranian armor could not penetrate far enough to reach those bases in Iraq used by American forces.

            The only way Iran could deliver any ordinance on American bases would be ballistic missiles, which are not accurate to have any military effect when armed with only conventional explosives. They can attack American bases with small arms or suicide bombers, with very limited effectiveness. How long would World War II lasted if Japan and Germany cold only attack bases such as Pearl Harbor with small arms or suicide bombers?

            Iran has played its very weak hand smartly, by signaling that any war will be very costly. First, Iran demonstrated that it can attack targets such as oil tankers, in such a way that it cannot be definitely proved that Iran was responsible. Next, Iran shot down a $176 million RQ-4 Global Hawk surveillance drone. American military forces and their allies are still fighting opponents Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria as well a minor actions in Africa. A great advantage that American military forces and their allies have, is provided by surveillance drones. The Taliban, Al-Qaida, Isis and other enemies would have loved to shoot down a Global Hawk surveillance drone, and thus possibly, temporarily deny American military forces the great advantage the Global Hawk provides. However, shooting down a Global Hawk was far beyond their capabilities, as the RQ-4 flies far above the range of ordinary anti-aircraft weapons .

            Iran signaled that it can shoot down RQ-4 Global Hawks. Iran says it was over Iranian territorial waters at the time. The Americans say it was in international waters. Many nations that in the past would automatically accept America’s version of such events, have expressed doubt as to which side is correct. This illustrates the degree that Trump has reduced America’s credibility in the world. To the extent that the Global Hawk was further from Iran, than Iran asserts, it suggests that Iran can shoot down Global Hawks at a greater distance from its territory. This demonstrates that any ground war in Iran will likely have to be fought without some of the advantages that Global Hawk provides against less sophisticated opponents.

            If America’s allies were even considering aiding an effort to invade Iran, this makes them less likely to participate in such a potentially costly undertaking. While, Iran’s military is no match for even America without any allies, invading and occupying Iran could make the fiasco of the second US-Iraq war look like a picnic. Military experts are almost unanimous that the only way to eliminate Iran’s nuclear capability would require forces on the ground. Simply employing air strikes, armed drones and/or missiles could not assure the destruction of the hundreds of well-hidden underground nuclear facilities…”
            https://seekingalpha.com/article/4272622

            1. Dumb, and uninformed.
              Bye lance

            2. “…This illustrates the degree that Trump has reduced America’s credibility in the world…”

              This illustrates an advanced case of TDS, accompanied by sdtraw-grasping.
              Oh, and you got flagged for pimping your investment service; buy an add, cheapskate.

      2. Well said.

      3. “Somebody call Virginia up and see if she can write something up for us.”

        Instead we get Billy boy. Literally. Child like thoughts from a child.

      4. All the whining is essentially “Why won’t Trump release a bunch of highly classified intelligence about why he did what he did?”

        Seriously, the DoD isn’t getting into how they get their info or the decision making process for these types of things. That’s all classified, and rightly so. They don’t owe the public an explanation. If the public is displeased with the decisions getting made, they have an opportunity in November to replace the Commander in Chief with someone else.

      5. Yeah, good summarization. Another way at looking at it, Trump painted a line in the sand after calling off the drone strike, saying there was no need to kill someone when they hadn’t hurt any of ours. And unlike Obama, when they crossed that line, he actually backed it up. If you paint lines in the sand, you need to back up what you say you’ll do, otherwise, you come off as weak, and no one will take you seriously at the negotiating table or when you paint further lines in the sand.

        I suppose you could say that Trump also made the point that he’s holding the bosses accountable, not the regular grunts who might have nothing to do with the attacks.

        And finally, yeah, we wiped out a major player in the terrorism game, who won’t be easy to replace. I call this a fucking win.

      6. “ And I really expect something a little more intelligent from Reason.”

        Where’ve you been the last few years?

        Otherwise well said.

        1. Where have I been? Over at Glibertarians, avoiding the shills and trolls.

          1. Cyto’s response is great, but I want to drill in to one specific statement that Billy said.

            “One could argue that killing Soleimani removed a dangerous opponent from the battlefield and that Soleimani’s absence will weaken Iran’s hand in Iraq, Syria, and elsewhere in the wider Middle East long-term. That’s certainly possible—plausible, even—but it probably overstates the extent to which Soleimani was dictating Iran’s foreign policy and underestimates the resilience of the Iranian regime.”

            Notice that while previous paragraphs were link-fests, ol’ Billy couldn’t seem to find a single link to back up this most important of assertions. In fact, last week, he was insisting that Solem- solema- solemangled-body- was the Second most powerful person in Iran. So whose story is really changing here? Was this dude such an important guy that killing him was a political nuk-a-geddon, or is he some figure head who wasn’t really powerful?

            Personally, I think it is high time that we dust off and stay away from that shit hole. The entirety of these regions have been a shit hole since at least the Battle of Tours marked the high point of Islamist rule, and the only reason we had reason to care was their Oil and that is no longer a factor.

            However, since our tendrils are so deeply buried in this shithole, the very best thing to do until we leave is to hold their leaders accountable for trying to gin up suicide bombers and terrorists. It is far more effective than constantly mowing down the zombies that Iran has been churning out from their disaffected youth, year after year.

            1. Good catch.
              Suleimani was a talented, capable, and charismatic operator.
              He will not be easily replaced

              1. In fact, the guy who took his spot looks like an accountant… which I think he was

          2. Cyto, I go over there to click on the links and some of the interesting original stuff people contribute. It is refreshing to see how people get along. I don’t think I am cool enough for the Glibs.

            1. We even have women who are not paid to be there.

      7. Great post.

        I don’t have much to add, except that I don’t think this is the last we’ve heard from Iran. Even so, Trump did the right thing with ordering the strike. And continues to do the right thing by continuing to have the sanctions strangle the mullahs’ hold on an otherwise wonderful country and people.

      8. Fantastic analysis, Cyto.

        Reason’s reporting on anything involving Trump has become an embarrassment.

      9. Yep, what you said is completely accurate.

        What’s frustrating is that so many commenting on this in the media clearly don’t know or understand the situation going on there, and that includes supposed ‘experts’ they bring on — which is surprising because Pompeo talks about it all the time in conferences and addresses. And I say don’t know or don’t understand, rather than they’re being dishonest, because I think its clear when you listen to them they’re totally clueless and in some kind of information bubble.

        The bottom line is that since the JCPOA was passed, Iran’s activities have been threatening to drag the whole region into a war. Contrary to media narratives, they’re the ones who started the situation in Yemen, not the Saudis, by funding and arming Houthi rebels. They’ve been using the situation in Syria to move arms to Hezbollah and expand Hezbollah’s presence in Syria. In Iraq, they’ve been trying to install puppet governments and use their proxies to intimidate the opposition. Iran has also continued long-range missile production, despite the Obama administration attempt to ban this in the UNSC resolution which approved the JCPOA. And as the Trump administration has been saying, all of these activities have been funded by the influx in cash from the agreement.

        Plus, the more likely a regional war, the more likely there will be nuclear escalation. Egypt and Saudi Arabia have long threatened that if Iran develops nuclear weapons, that they’ll develop nuclear weapons, too. Because of a lack of trust between anyone in the region, any large-scale conflagration could easily push an arms race. The JCPOA would have eventually expired, and Iran’s influence over the region would have grown enormously by that time, militarily and economically.

        Of course, there are a whole lot of reasons why Iran’s aggression ran against the security interests of the US, and our NATO allies, and our allies in the Middle East, even if you don’t even expect the worst-case scenario of nuclear escalation.

        Rather than trying to start a war, what the US has been doing is bide time and use Iran’s attempts to escalate conflict in the region to weaken Iran’s proxies and build up alliances. Gradually, we’ve been getting countries both in Europe and Latin America to agree to the idea of labeling Hezbollah a terrorist organization and instituting sanctions against them. The aggressive attacks from Iran in the Persian Gulf and Saudi Arabia has also created an opportunity to reboot MESA (Middle East Strategic Alliance). One of the reasons Egypt was skittish about joining is because it didn’t want to increase the chance of war with Iran, but now its a moot issue. Its also brought those Arab partners closer to Israel, which makes a deal in Israel more likely to receive Arab support, and in turn further weaken groups like Hamas and Hezbollah.

        All of these efforts made the protests in Lebanon and Iraq more likely to happen.

        And as you’ve noted, part of Iran’s attempts to lash out and create conflict have been in response to the renewed sanctions, but they’ve also been in response to the threat of the political situations in Iraq and Lebanon where they fear they’re losing control of their empire to popular protests. Iran has blamed the protests on US influence, tried to describe all opposition groups as US proxies, and has long demanded American forces to leave, despite what had been the wishes of the Iraqi government that we stay.

        By the way Soleimani’s death is already likely shaking things up. Putin made a surprise visit to Damascus yesterday, in what could be a sign that Russia is trying to convince Assad to rely on them instead of Iran. Ever wonder why “abandoned” the Kurds? Because we need the help of Turkey and Russia on Iran.

        1. It tells you everything you need to know that the Saudis, Egyptians, Jordanians have joined with the Isreali’s in a defacto alliance against the Iranians, and also to some extent the Turks.

          Netanyahu is a much more stable and reliable partner than Khamenni, or Erdogan.

        2. Well said.
          Some good analysis in this comment section.

          Iran is desperate. Sanctions have crippled them at home, while Syria has led them and Hezbollah abroad. China and Iran are allies of temporary convenience, limited relations, and unreliable.
          Nobody is bailing the Iranian regime out.
          This is why I think there’s a real possibility they come to the table.
          There are no other options that leave them with a chance at staying in power.
          They were hoping limited war with the US would accomplish that task, but they were assuming it would be fought globalist style, as the US had demonstrated no will to win over the past two decades.
          The Suleimani strike completely changes the calculus though. They lost their best military mind and leader, nothing and nobody in Iran were hit, and it flew in the face of globalist SOP.
          They’re not going to get the limited war to rally the population they wished for.
          So they either come to the table, or hang on until the bitter end as the economy crashes, they continue losing ground abroad, and the population/IRGC eventually rises up and hangs them from lampposts

      10. Why did the US invade Iraq? Why did the US invade Afghanistan? Why did the US bomb Libya into the stone age? How far does the US sphere of influence go? Do you even know what the meaning of sphere of influence was? Is was a militry threat by the US to prevent other nation from trading with South American countries. In other words, we wanted South America to have only one supplier the US. So much for free trade.
        During the Iran Iraq war, which the US provoked by having Iraq attack Iran, the US, UK and Israel were selling weapons to both sides. The US sold never gas to Iraq which was used against Iranians. The US also sold satellite intelligence information to both side. The whole idea was to keep the war going as long as possible so as militarily neuter both countries, depleting them of military power, treasure and young men. When the Sha was ousted Iran was left full of modern US military equipment, intended to be used against the Soviets. Israel, always wanting to be the dominant power does not like any other strong power in the region. The middle east has been dominated and exploited by the west for centuries. So how is it that they are the evil ones if, like Americans who got rid of their English masters, they seek to rid themselves of those who not only exploit them but seek to send them back to the stone age. Do you really believe the oil on their soil belongs to the US? And they are evil for not letting us steal it? Trump is just another Zio chump who is pretty much doing the bidding of Israel, who I would not doubt are skimming Iraqi oil for free. I was under the impression only congress could declare war in the US. Since when has the US president become a dictator? And who really wants an idiot dictator whose previous experience was a reality show host. Like all presidents before him, who lied in their campaign and did the exact opposite once in, he is a tool of the globalists empire builders who are out for war with Iran. His speeches about ending the longest war in US history in the middle east and caring about America first was all a bunch of lies for the mindless American masses. US presidents have been shills for wall street globalists since the end of the second world war and have managed to make the word nationalism an evil word. It is no wonder when countries around the globe were asked which countries poses more danger to the world, America was at the top of the list. Yet Americans are constantly lied to by their government and a complicit media that they are out fighting global terrorism when in fact they are out to conquer the globe.

        1. The intervention in Libya was a NATO action, and largely spurred on by Turkey, which is a NATO member and had been funding the Libyan rebels prior to the NATO intervention. Same thing in Syria, btw, where most of the funding and arming of the anti-Assad rebels came from Turkey. Turkey wanted Assad gone.

          Not everything is about Zionists, or even about the US.

    2. Another poorly written piece of garbage. It is put together by someone who shares opinion, not fact, and who is obviously butthurt by the success of our country, since we now have a president with courage and conviction. Please keep writing the great opinionated pieces that keeps your leftwing ideology, losing.

    3. Reason..a previously well written and researched site that I routinely visited for an alternate take with a Libeterian slant.

      Today..another “Never Trumper” TDS rag..

      You guys do not get it because your insight finger is incapable of pointing backwards. This site is now ” Without Reason.”

      Your TDS has exposed you as the Liberal Elitist you really are, just hiding behind an false flag of Libeterian freedom..as long as it is freedom you espouse and approve of because you know..us plebian proletariats are not smart enough to display any real critical thinking.

      Go have dinner with Pelosi.

    4. Yes. Clearly written to express his wishes, not reality.

  2. Boehm: Reason has been wrong for a week but Trump was even more wrong, because reasons.

    1. Trump just gave Iran a way out and declined to escalate this conflict further. Yet, reason spent all week informing us how he was a lunatic who was going to start World War III. Rather than admit they were wrong and reconsider a few things, reason doubles down with more Orange Man Bad.

      1. Plus we learned exactly what capabilities Iran missiles have and where their launch sites are in Iran, if we didnt know already.

        1. You guys are totes wrong. I know, because the DNC seems to have gotten their talking points out and everyone is now singing from the same songbook.

          We dodged a bullet because Iran offered us an off-ramp. Their missiles are super-precise, so they totally missed on purpose. (don’t let that 20% failure rate fool you)

          Look for those phrases and you will start noticing them everywhere. The bit about the super-precise weapons came from Andrea Mitchell first. Made me laugh. A scud knock-off… super precise. LOL.

          Anyway, they all missed the point last night when we were talking about it here (and over at Glib). They finally figured it out this morning when Trump told them it was over… suddenly Iran missed on purpose. Well, no shit. They knew that an all-out attack on an american base would lead to their destruction. So they did a pretend attack. It was smart and a win-win.

          What wasn’t smart was that a bunch of idiots posting on libertarian web sites understood it a good 12 to 18 hours before they did. All night they were running around talking about “raining missiles” on “US Bases” (they are not US bases) and World War Three!!!

          They should come out of this a little chastened. But the won’t.

          They should look around and see that Trump, the guy who is a buffoon (and I still maintain that, despite the fact that everything always seems to work) is actually a whole lot smarter than they are. That’s hard to accept. So they don’t. They just pretend that they knew it all along and Trump just bumbled his way into the whole thing and if Iran wasn’t super sweet and kind we would be in WWIII right now.

          Damn, I hate political pundits.

          1. +100

            Nice assessment above too.
            Cyto
            January.8.2020 at 1:49 pm

            1. lest you pundits and shills think I’m BS-ing about the analysis, here’s my Glib post from last night:

              cyto on January 7, 2020 at 6:31 pm
              NBC just broke in with a news report…. MORE ATTACKS ON US BASES!!!!! (OK, actually it was that the Iranian government said that those rockets were theirs. But nice way to spin the lede there, Lester.

              So, here’s what they said. They are the greatest and toughest and they have struck mightily against the United States because of their killing of Sulaiman. If the US does any more attacks, they will retaliate swiftly and with great might.

              I heard them loud and clear.

              “We’ve had enough… Here’s your olive branch. We lobbed a couple of rockets in the general direction of a base. We are declaring victory. ”

              I hope the White House is smart enough to hear them. They are suing for peace with that ineffectual strike. They just offered everyone a way out. Trump can now act magnanimous and begin talks behind the scenes for ending all of the Iranian problems. The Mullahs can pound their chests before their people. Win-win.

              Oh, except for Schumer, Pelosi, Schiff et al. Those guys are in a pickle. Because if Trump is smart enough to take this opportunity, now they’ll be forced to switch sides again and call him a puss for not attacking Iran. That should be interesting to watch.

              So my analysis immediately upon hearing Iran’s proclamations was that they had pulled their punches and wanted out.

              It took the press until 10AM today to start coming around to this realization…. they were so busy trying to fit the narrative that they couldn’t see what was right in front of them.

              We had already been speculating that nobody had been hurt and that Trump should just take the win and call it a day. And then Iran confirmed it with their announcement. It wasn’t really that tough to see.

              But the Press was all-in on world war three. Which is not surprising since most of that crowd views it as their civic responsibility to act as the propaganda wing of the DNC. But I was shocked that Reason had multiple writers drinking that cool-aid. The “Raining missiles” headline was the kicker. That was inexcusable.

              You guys really have to do better. I expect smart analysis from a libertarian point of view from Reason. Not simple-minded partisan hackery.

              (reminder – libertarians don’t like republicans. But we don’t like democrats either. We are the third direction. We analyze based on principles, not principals If Trump is accidentally right, just say so. And even if Trump is wrong, that doesn’t make the Democrats right. Usually they are both not just wrong, but really, really wrong.)

              1. Everything you said makes sense, and I really hope you’re right. I guess it’s difficult for me to be optimistic enough to think that there won’t be further repercussions from all of it. But unlike some, I’m not rooting for bad results just because I’m not a fan of Trump. If all of this ends up okay for the U.S. and as a byproduct also helps Trump politically, I can live with that.

              2. (reminder – libertarians don’t like republicans. But we don’t like democrats either. We are the third direction. We analyze based on principles, not principals If Trump is accidentally right, just say so. And even if Trump is wrong, that doesn’t make the Democrats right. Usually they are both not just wrong, but really, really wrong.)

                QFT.

              3. It would have been fine if they stopped there but they had to go on and shoot down a Ukrainian airliner too.

                I’m waiting for the theory Trump had the Iranians shoot down the airliner in return for no more strikes In order to send a message to the Ukranians they better get cracking on that Biden investigation.

                1. Now that you mention it…

              4. @cyto
                “(reminder – libertarians don’t like republicans. But we don’t like democrats either. We are the third direction. We analyze based on principles, not principals If Trump is accidentally right, just say so. And even if Trump is wrong, that doesn’t make the Democrats right. Usually they are both not just wrong, but really, really wrong.)”

                Some of us aren’t stuck in any of the three mentioned ideologies/dimensions: i.e. conservatism, liberalism, or libertarianism. We evaluate and analyze from many more dimensions and viewpoints, and that way retain the ability to learn and the flexibility needed for wisdom.

          2. I am also glad that among the shitbags working for the Deep State, Trump can count on a few intel people who are putting America first and gave him good intel and good strategies.

          3. “So they did a pretend attack. It was smart and a win-win”.

            I suppose inasmuch as they can convince their own people that they responded with strength to the great satan, that is true.

            Here, it just seems kinda lame.

            1. Whoops. Shoulda read further down thread.

        2. “Plus we learned exactly what capabilities Iran missiles have and where their launch sites are in Iran, if we didn’t know already.”

          It’s the popular impression that the Doolittle raid on Tokyo was merely a pin-prick to the Japanese and a morale boost to the US; that’s wrong.
          Yamamoto had guaranteed to Hirohito that the royal residence could not be bombed by the US; Doolittle showed it certainly could, and Y. I. was mortified.
          As a result, he sent out every available naval asset in the hopes of finding and sinking the US carriers, all poorly equipped with code books, and Rochefort harvested a windfall, which lead directly to Midway…
          Getting the enemy to ‘shoot first’ is a time-honored way of finding out from where he can shoot.

  3. This guy was the architect of the Iranian terror campaign that has killed tens of thousands of people including thousands of Americans over the last 40 years. Americans are a lot safer if for no other reason than Iran no longer has the services of someone who was quite good at killing people. In other new Boehm concludes the US killing Admiral Yamamoto did nothing to advance the war effort.

    It is funny as hell to watch reason move the goal posts here. Yesterday, Trump was going to start World War III. Today, it is “well he didn’t make anyone safer”. Yeah, because killing one of the bigger terrorist leaders of the last 50 years does nothing to make anyone safer and killing basically the number 2 guy in the Iranian government would never make those running it think twice before killing Americans. Nope. If only Trump had sent them a few pallets of cash all of this could have been solved and the brave Iranian general would still be alive.

    Reason is straight up Iranian propaganda these days.

    1. It’s not propaganda so much as stupid orange man bad takes. They barely even discuss what this means for US troop withdrawal in the piece. Which too me is the biggest issue. Also was it a lie or a strategic miscalculation? I could see a scenario where I don’t support the droning of this guy yet can also acknowledge it accomplished what it was supposed to. Why can’t Reason?

      1. Or acknowledge that their assessment of the situation was flawed. God forbid they ever acknowledge a mistake or gasp reconsider their assumptions.

      2. prop·a·gan·da
        /ˌpräpəˈɡandə/
        noun
        1. information, especially of a biased or misleading nature, used to promote or publicize a particular political cause or point of view.

        It’s Propaganda. unreason knows it biased and misleading or should know.

        unreason does love them some commies in China and some Islamic tyrants in Iran.

    2. I actually believe the narrative that the Iranians didn’t actually want to kill anyone with those missile strikes. They don’t want an all-out shooting war, and a direct hit killing a few dozen American servicemen would’ve gotten them one.

      The current situation allows everyone to save face. Trump killed the dude he wanted and nothing bad actually happened as a result, the Iranians get to claim that they fired back and their media is likely reporting the strikes as a resounding success so their leadership doesn’t look weak domestically, and the resulting Iraqi parliament vote gives us cover to leave Iraq if we actually want to do that (we should).

      Reason’s take seems to be that the only acceptable foreign policy involves pallets of cash. Appeasement has a long and well deserved reputation for effectiveness, right?

      1. I totally believe that they didn’t want the missiles to do any damage. But, that is not much face saving for Iran. This guy was a very big deal and his death is a huge humiliation. No amount of lying and spin about the glorious missiles of the revolution changes that. Trump whacked that guy and really there isn’t a damned think Iran can do about it. And now the world knows it.

        1. For sure it doesn’t save as much face as actually doing something about it, but if they actually do something about it the folks in Tehran are going to get an impromptu lesson in exactly why Lockheed and Raytheon are as profitable as they are. One dead general would be the least of their concerns.

          This was as good as it was going to get for them. They can spin this in their media and save as much face as they can that way, or they can pick a larger fight and catch a far worse ass beating.

          It’s also a solid reminder to everyone else in the region that we only tolerate our own proxy wars there. If this guy had limited his reach to Iran’s borders he’d be alive right now, the meddling elsewhere in the region is what got him whacked. It’s wildly hypocritical of us, but as you note, what is anyone actually gonna do about it?

          1. what is anyone actually gonna do about it?

            The electronic and utility infrastructure of the US is fragile and vulnerable. A country of only modest military means could strike a devastating blow against us if sufficiently provoked. It’s probably only a matter of time until someone tries.

            1. They could do that but he US retaliation would be devastating and likely result in the deaths of their entire political leadership.

              1. Perhaps not their political leadership but at least all of their military equipment we know about including known and potential nuke tech sites.

                Iran has seen shock and awe and I don’t think they are interested in season 2.

                1. No body has seen real shock and awe since the late stages of WWII. Real shock and awe would take out all their oil refineries, ports, railroads and major roads.

                  Leave them with a simple choice sue for peace or starve. Japan was on the verge of a famine even before Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

            2. Who?

              Mexico? Canada?

              Russia? China?

              While you are correct about utility infrastructures in the USA, so are other countries. Plus, as the USA moves toward more solar more and more businesses and residences can stay powered if power lines go down.

              Any attack on the USA would likely garner a Japanese Pearl Harbor retribution. No country on Earth has the military capabilities that the Japanese had in Dec 1941. Japan lost WWII by June 1942.

            3. I like how the Reason liberals are still hoping for damage to the US.

            4. The Soleimani hit was a reminder to the Ayatollahs that they can be gotten. They further know that they cannot maintain control of their own population if survival means perpetually living in a reinforced bunker.

              That’s the trade-off for not them not lashing out with whatever they have – they get to live precisely for not doing so. And we get to avoid the costs of destroying them.

              Coordinated strikes on our infrastructure would erase that.

              1. a reminder to the Ayatollahs that they can be gotten.

                I think that was the point of warning of strikes on “cultural” sites. Trump was telling the Mullahs they’re not safe hiding in Qom.

            5. News flash Vern, they already are.

            6. “The electronic and utility infrastructure of the US is fragile and vulnerable. A country of only modest military means could strike a devastating blow against us if sufficiently provoked. It’s probably only a matter of time until someone tries.”

              Bullshit.

          2. if history is any judge, wait until we are distracted then fly a few planes into buildings. I wouldn’t be surprised if in 20-30 years we have a new crop of radicalized guys and girls because we blew up daddy and mommy during our Oil Liberation war. That was something I was really worried about with ISIS, because they were trying to train and educate/brainwash kids for the long game

      2. Until someone with knowledge tells me why these hits were intended target vs others, I call bullshit on Iranian capabilities to hit a very tiny target.
        Satellite Photos Reveal Extent Of Damage From Iranian Strike On Air Base In Iraq

        They hit some hangers and not others, plus multiple missiles didnt explode or look to hit nothing.

        1. I would also note that those helicopters are clearly spaced out far past their rotors. This can indicate spacing for ground based attacks or air attacks.

          The missile early warning system worked as designed and the only aggressive powers in the area with missiles are Iran, Turkey, and Syria.

          1. I don’t think Iran tried to miss.
            I think they didn’t try very hard to inflict significant damage.
            15 or 22 rockets/missiles is all they used…

            1. Based on that satellite photo, the warheads seem small. The Russians designed the SCUD to carry <2000lbs warhead.

            2. Word is that they called Iraq to let them know the attack was coming. The Iraqis, of course, called us.

              It was a show. A violent and dangerous show… but only a calculated amount of violent and a calculated amount of dangerous.

              After Trump very vocally did not destroy their missile base in response to attacks on Saudi oil fields because of the potential for casualties, they had to know that killing a bunch of enlisted men was not going to end well.

              1. that would make sense since one of those missiles crashed into an HQ room from what I heard. Not what you do if you don’t want casualties.

        2. From the reporting, these are SCUD variants. I don’t know how much they have been improved, but the last time we encountered them they were described as having area level accuracy. You can target a section of a city. Not a building. Not even a block. But maybe a neighborhood.

          1. We’re gonna find out now.

            Thanks for the real life samples of Iranian rocket tech! Suckers!

      3. It is always a temptation for a rich and lazy nation,
        To puff and look important and to say: —
        “Though we know we should defeat you, we have not the time to meet you.
        We will therefore pay you cash to go away.”

        And that is called paying the Dane-geld;
        But we’ve proved it again and again,
        That if once you have paid him the Dane-geld
        You never get rid of the Dane.

  4. What is this take even? it was a show of strength to solidify our hold in the region. Which sucks honestly from the perspective of wanting to leave, but jesus if you don’t think it accomplished that you are nuts. Iran pissed themselves over this, they purposefully conducted a missile strike in order to avoid killing Americans during their show of strength. This unequivocally shows they are wearing no clothes to everyone in the region. That was the point of the attack. And yes that makes Americans in the region safer as Iran will probably stop a lot of their bullshit guerilla strikes and skirmishes that have resulted in american lives and threatened sovereign soil with their “protest” on our embassy.

    1. Your citation fell off about how accurate Iranian missiles are.

      When America leaves, Iran will turn Iraq into a puppet state. As evidenced by their desired to get Americans to leave and numerous activities to control Iraq government.
      Iran Dominates in Iraq After U.S. ‘Handed the Country Over’

      1. NOT. OUR. FUCKING. PROBLEM!

        1. That not very realistic.

        2. It is though. American politics have shaped the region.

          Staying in Iraq is not a solution. That does not mean that the USA cannot engage Iran diplomatically.

  5. Didn’t Robby already basically say the same exact thing as Boehm? He was raked over the coals for not understanding how people view the situation. The PR speak of the administration to justify killing him doesn’t negate that the administration and public flat out get that he deserved to die.

    1. There are lots of people who “deserve to die”. Should the US military be drone-striking all of them? By the President’s order alone? The US military shouldn’t be the world’s superhero.

      1. And you shouldn’t post.
        You continue to ignore the bulk of arguments made.
        Pretending that they don’t exist doesn’t mean that they don’t exist.
        But hey, I’m sure that won’t stop you from insubstantial whining

        1. While you continue to ignore my arguments and instead project your caricatures and fantasies onto me.

          What is your standard by which the president should be permitted to drone-strike people abroad? Anyone anywhere? If not, then when?

          1. “What is your standard by which the president should be permitted to drone-strike people abroad? Anyone anywhere? If not, then when?”

            If Nadless was honest, he’d reply “Blank check… But ONLY for Trump! Other “R” POTUS? Pending approval, depending on whether or not new “R” POTUS is sufficiently bellicose. “D” POTUS? Forget it!”

            1. He was responsible for multiple attacks against US interest, including an act of war involving an attack on US soil (our embassy is considered US soil). He was in active combat zone that Trump already had permission from Congress to conduct military operations in. The War Powers Act doesn’t require the President to give notification until 48 hours afterwards, because the ones who wrote it realized that sometimes emergencies come up that can’t wait for debate (if this was such a situation is less clear but the law technically is on Trump’s side). So, it would appear Trump has all the authorization he needed already.

            2. Hi Old Mex.

            3. “If Nadless was honest, he’d reply “Blank check… But ONLY for Trump! Other “R” POTUS? Pending approval, depending on whether or not new “R” POTUS is sufficiently bellicose. “D” POTUS? Forget it!””

              If you were honest, fewer people would consider you an advanced case of TDS and a bullshitter besides.

          2. Suleimani.
            Was.
            An.
            Enemy.
            Combatant.
            Engaged.
            In.
            Active.
            Hostilities.

            1. Trump.
              Is.
              Commander-in-chief.
              Of.
              US.
              Armed.
              Forces.

            2. Not what I asked. I’m not asking about this specific case. I’m asking where you draw the line. Because there has to be a line somewhere.

              1. Launching a first strike nuclear attack unprovoked. But not responding to aggression that has been increasing for decades.

              2. You’re asking about an event which hasn’t happened?
                Got it.

                There’s no way to answer your hypothetical. It’s too vague.
                If you’re going to propose a hypothetical, you have to give a specific scenario.
                If “enemy combatant engaged in active hostilities” isn’t enough for you, state why or propose an alternative

                1. It’s only “too vague” if you haven’t thought through your position more carefully.

                  You’re basically justifying the whole presidential “kill list” idea which is offensive on its face.

                  1. “chemjeff radical individualist
                    January.7.2020 at 6:07 pm
                    When your response consists of an insult, I know I’ve hit the mark”

                    So you’re saying I’m the most correct person on this board for over a decade?

                    Why do you keep hiding from this question Jeff?

                  2. Nobody has to answer your stupid questions. Now fuck off.

                  3. chemjeff radical individualist
                    January.8.2020 at 2:50 pm
                    It’s only “too vague” if you haven’t thought through your position more carefully.
                    You’re basically justifying the whole presidential “kill list” idea which is offensive on its face.

                    I stated that an “enemy combatant engaged in active hostilities” is a legitimate target for the CinC to take out.
                    You pretend that such a clear statement doesn’t exist.
                    You’re either unwilling or unable to have a conversation because you can only hear the voices in your head.
                    It’s psychotic.
                    Literally

                    1. Is that “the line” that you draw? The president can take out any “enemy combatant engaged in active hostilities” any time he wants, anywhere in the world, without getting any approval from anyone? This is what you support? I”m asking you to clarify if this is “the line” that you are drawing. If so you’re giving an awful lot of power to the executive.

                    2. Running just makes you look worse.

                      “chemjeff radical individualist
                      January.7.2020 at 6:07 pm
                      When your response consists of an insult, I know I’ve hit the mark”

                      So you’re saying I’m the most correct person on this board for over a decade?

              3. If you capable of answering seriously, would you have supported swatting bin Laden after he helped orchestrate the Battle of Mogadishu? Or the first WTC bombings or the USS Cole attack? If you would, how is swatting the man behind the attacks that killed over 600 Americans over two decades, was responsible for the killing of an American civilian a week ago and an attack on a US embassy a couple days later, any different?

                1. Without Congressional approval? No.

                  The president is commander in chief. He is not a military general and he is not an emperor defending the honor of his empire.

                  1. “chemjeff radical individualist
                    January.7.2020 at 6:07 pm
                    When your response consists of an insult, I know I’ve hit the mark”

                    So you’re saying I’m the most correct person on this board for over a decade?

                    Dodging only proves what everyone knows, you can’t answer. Because of how you’ll look if you do.

                  2. He has congressional approval to kill enemy combatants in Iraq, whether your dumb lying ass likes it or not.

                  3. Actually, outranks all generals and the AUMF and the War Powers Act both give him the authority to act.

                    1. Do you support the War Powers Act?
                      Do you support the AUMFs?
                      Do you think the president should have the authority to go bombing around the world on his own authority?

                    2. You realize your failure to answer is an answer.

                      “chemjeff radical individualist
                      January.7.2020 at 6:07 pm
                      When your response consists of an insult, I know I’ve hit the mark”

                      So you’re saying I’m the most correct person on this board for over a decade?

                    3. That isn’t the point you stated he needs Congressional approval. My response is he already had it.

                    4. You asked if I would have supported unilateral executive military action against Bin Laden without congressional support after Mogadishu. I said no, despite what any War Powers Act says. CONGRESS HAS THE POWER TO DECIDE MATTERS OF WAR AND PEACE.

                      So if you support the status quo, why don’t you tell us why you support the status quo.

                    5. So if given the chance to take out Bin Laden, after he killed Americans in American soil, but you only had a narrow window to kill him or capture him through a military operations you would go to Congress and let him get away? So, would you also then be responsible for the 3000 people killed on 9/11?

                    6. And how will you protect the classified information you had gathered without burning sources by introducing it to all of Congress for debate?

                    7. And no President had ever been held to that standard. Washington deployed troops to suppress the Whiskey Rebellion before getting Congressional Approval. Declaring war is different then a single military action.

                    8. How about rescuing hostages on the high seas from pirates, do we need a declaration of war for that too? Stopping an immenent attack that is going to happen within an hour whole Congress is at recess?

                  4. “If you capable of answering seriously, would you have supported swatting bin Laden after he helped orchestrate the Battle of Mogadishu? Or the first WTC bombings or the USS Cole attack?”
                    “Without Congressional approval? No.”

                    There is no doubt that Congress has yielded its authority in the declaration of war, and that is a mistake. But Jefff, as usual, in an attempt to appear ‘thoughtful’, sticks his head up his ass one more time.
                    Opportunities such as this are ‘fugitive’ (if you’ll excuse me); they do not admit of the time required to round up a Congressional majority.
                    While I’m certain Congress should be much more involved than it is, here’s a case where ‘it’s easier to apologize than ask permission’, and properly so.
                    Both Bin Laden and this scumbag, by every bit of intel available, were knee-deep in terrorist activity against the US; eat that hellfire, sucker.

          3. Pedo Jeffy, you have no argument. Just sophist rankings.

            Now go kill yourself you worthless little shitweasel.

        2. chemjeff really needs replies. He is as desperate as the Iranians.

          1. JFree admitted he makes his friends watch him post here.

            I mean fuck man, those are some good friends if you abuse them like that.

            1. I doubt Pedo Jeffy has any friends. I doubt even his family can tolerate him. He really is that loathsome and annoying. Can you imagine being in his presence? I’m sure it would hard to resist the urge to snap his neck.

      2. No. But on a list of US enemies that deserve to die, this guy ranked at or near the top. He orchestrated an invasion of US soil last week! Embassies are sovereign US soil. He killed an American contractor. He blew up countless US soldiers.

        Was he plotting imminent attacks? Of course he was. It’s what he did for a living. We’re they major attacks? Who cares?

        In light of the fact that Iran, who could have easily inflicted mass casualties on US forces, punted, Trump (of whom I am not a fan) completely won. Iran must now ratchet back their actions and come to the table as they are a proven paper tiger.

      3. chem, chem, chem….c’mon bro. Deep breath. I will answer.

        Should the US military be drone-striking all of them? NO
        By the President’s order alone? IT DEPENDS

        You’re clearly misreading the situation here. Let me help you. You see, this militia leader in IRAQ, Abu Mahdi al-Muhandi, decided he would attack an American airbase. And so he did, injuring 4 American soldiers, and killing one American contractor. In response, we killed 25 of his pals via airstrikes. Abu Mahdi al-Muhandi responded by attacking our embassy, an act of war. Would you believe this son of a bitch smiled for the cameras? Yeah I know, just fucking crazy. And some of his friends helpfully left graffiti letting us know he visited. POTUS Trump correctly assessed that this useless piece of shit Abu Mahdi al-Muhandi deserved justice. Terminal justice for his act of war against us.

        So we droned Abu Mahdi al-Muhandi. Blew his ass to smithereens. But lo and behold, General Soleimani just happened to be there with 4 of his subordinate generals. Who knew?! I mean, Soleimani the warrior-poet just happened to be there at 1am, right next to Abu Mahdi al-Muhandi. What a terrible circumstance of being in the wrong place at the wrong time. Golly gee – just tragic.

        But chem….just what was general Soleimani doing there in the first place? Exchanging falafel recipes? Reciting some poetry? I don’t think so. Neither do you.

        POTUS Trump appropriately droned Abu Mahdi al-Muhandi and Soleimani. Pretty much any POTUS would, given the same circumstance. We don’t need a superhero as POTUS. Just one who makes a good call. I think POTUS Trump made the right call droning Abu Mahdi al-Muhandi. Soleimani was just a freebie.

        1. “”Who knew?! I mean, Soleimani the warrior-poet just happened to be there at 1am, right next to Abu Mahdi al-Muhandi. “”

          It was the only time the goat was available.

        2. Soon you’ll learn not to bother trying to have an honest conversation with Little Jeffy.

          1. You are the one who refuses to address or answer honestly my questions offered in good faith.

            1. “offered in good faith.”

              Nobody believes this.

              1. Well, I did.

                1. Nope. And we’re not showing you even minimum respect. You aren’t worthy of it. Although I suspect the people that hate you here are the closest thing in the world you have to being friends.

                  You are a sick sad thing that loves child rapists and terrorists. It would be good if you weren’t around earth anymore.

                2. I’ve offered multiple arguments over the past couple of days in good faith. You however have always misrepresented what I was saying to fit your narrative.

      4. no, we shouldn’t be the world’s superhero, or the world’s cop. But one someone attacks us directly, then game on. I 100% us hitting the mastermind behind the attacks rather than some disposable peon in the field, or some poor grunt on a border post who had nothing to do with the situation. They hit our embassy, showed that they have no respect for diplomatic immunity. We showed that if they want to play that game, then we can too.

        Furthermore, while I agree that the president shouldn’t just be able to kill people without oversight, in a situation like this where we have to move fast, the LAST people that need to be brought in are the bureaucrats in Congress. This is a military operation, and Congress leaks like sieve classified information, even when they aren’t intentionally trying to do so to screw a political opponent. Often times we might need to move fast on information and congress does nothing fast. Make it similar to getting a warrent, have a judge sign off on it. It wouldn’t be a perfect solution, there are problems with it, but its a load better then CONGRESS turning it into a circus. It’s the same reason we didn’t tell Iraq or Pakistan before taking out terrorist leaders, we can’t trust them.

        Suliemani was in an active military zone and he was a terrorist who had just attacked us. I have no problem with us responding in a situation like this.

          1. Thanks, that was my point about posturing that Chemjeff got so bent out shape over that I make later.

        1. Absolutely not. Congress is the authority for matters of war and peace. You want to take war powers even further away from the elected branches of government. How is this not strengthening the imperial executive? Good heavens.

          Should Congress have the power to decide matters of war and peace, or not?

          1. Are you saying congress needs to approve all individual operations on the battle field? Or all drone strikes?

            I’m not a big fan of executive power, but if we are already at war with enemy insurgents in Iraq then it might be impractical to get congressional approval for every military operation we engage in.

            I’m not saying this particular drone strike was wise. I don’t yet know, and may never know, if it was objectively the right move.

            I’m not a fan of Trump, but I don’t think anyone is saying that this strike was not within his scope of powers. Is that what you’re saying? Or are you saying that you want the chief executive to have less power than he currently does? In general, I would agree with that.

            I don’t think that’s a very popular position on the left though. I’d love to see a Democrat candidate say that if elected, they’ll reduce their own power. Would you also like to see that be the position of Democrats?

            1. Are you saying congress needs to approve all individual operations on the battle field? Or all drone strikes?

              If Congress didn’t authorize them expressly with a declaration of war? Well yeah. I didn’t see the clause in the constitution that said “the president gets to assassinate whomever he wants”.

              And the open-ended AUMFs are bullshit. They have to go.

              I don’t know if Trump actually had the legal authority to do what he did. Trying to shoehorn this action into an AUMF from 2002 which dealt with Saddam Hussein and his atrocities is ridiculous.

              But even if it was technically legal, it is not at all something libertarians should be celebrating. If we support this then it undermines all of our antiwar credibility.

              I’d love to see a Democrat candidate say that if elected, they’ll reduce their own power. Would you also like to see that be the position of Democrats?

              Well yeah but I”m not under any illusions. They are just as much of the War Party as the Republicans. Someone has to stand up to end foreign entanglements. If we don’t push for it, who will?

              1. You should read the second article of the constitution sometime dummy. You should also loom at the thousands of papers on the War Powers Act and their constitutional issues of restricting article II powers. You’re just ignorant.

              2. Thank you for answering. I really do appreciate it.

                But I’m not just talking about war, where progressives often find common ground with libertarians, I’m asking if you think the president should have less power across the board. Obviously I have no illusions of any democratic candidate ever being willing to abdicate power, because none of them actually believe the president, or the government in general, should actually have less power over our lives.

                Do you actually self identify as a libertarian? I hear people around here calling you a lefty, but I want to know what you claim to be.

                1. He self identifies as a libertarian but seems to take the left side of any issue he argues.

                  1. Mostly.

                2. Chemjeff aint a Libertarian and in fact hates libertarianism.

                3. Yes, I’m a libertarian.

          2. Congress has the ability to declare war and controls the military’s finances. Hard stop. They can get the ball rolling (theoretically, since in actuality they’ve given this power to the presidency), but once the ball starts rolling they no longer have any control. Everything past that regarding military operations is the responsibility of the executive, because unlike you, the founders understood that a committee can’t and shouldn’t run a war. You need someone who can make quick or hard decisions and can be held directly responsible, not a fucking debate team trying to score political points.

            And since we weren’t starting a war with Iran, but were responding to attacks in an area where we already approved the military’s use of force, by someone who had made it clear that he wasn’t going to respect ROEs, traditional diplomatic immunities, or the Geneva Convention, I don’t see what your point is.

          3. Pedo Jeffy, you just worry abut Canada and leave America to us Americans, m’kay bitch?

          4. Jeff apparently thinks any action is an act of war… yet applauds china for stealing IP from is which under this thesis is an act of war.

            Again jeff doesnt actually think about what he is typing, he just moves his goal posts. A single responsive attack to an attack is not war. Large scale long term back and forth are. Article II powers grant short term defensive strategies to the executive, not the legislative. Jeff has never read the constitution though.

  6. “Killing Soleimani did not prevent an attack on American troops in Iraq; if anything, it appears to have triggered an attack, though thankfully there were no casualties.”

    No casualties was by design. Iran needed a way to save face without actually escalating. Now they can claim 200 soldiers killed or whatever “official” number is, without risking further retaliation from the US

    1. The Iranians hail-mary’d 22 surface-to-surface missiles at Allied bases.

      They didnt plan for zero casualties.

  7. “We want you to have a future, and a great future,” Trump said, speaking directly to the Iranian government and the people of Iran. “The United States is ready to embrace peace with all who seek it.”

    Good for Trump.

    I find this whole thing disturbing and unfortunately, I simply don’t trust ANYONE anymore in my attempt to formulate a reasoned opinion. When you don’t trust in any institutions, it’s amazing how difficult it is to be sure about anything.

    We have the vast feudal empire that is the Federal Government, what with its career intelligence and deep state- at least part of which appears to be taking part in an insurgency against (then Canidate, and now President) Donald Trump.

    It seems entirely plausible that the attack on the embassy that instigated all of this mess was at least in part orchestrated by US intelligence assets. For instance, it’s conceivable that some CIA ground operative slipped a low level street urchin $50 us to paint Soleimani’s name on the wall during the fracas. Then you’ve got Trump, surrounded by career military/intelligence officials goading him to respond to a clear act of aggression from the Iranian state. Said operative tips off a local photojournalist and boom, you’ve got mysterious dots connecting themselves all over the place.

    Trust me, there are basement loads of analysts in Langley who cook this shit up every day. I don’t trust the press, I don’t trust US intelligence agencies, I don’t trust any of it anymore.

    1. I don’t think what you are saying is out of the question. Yeah, the CIA would totally do and probably has done something like that. My question is what did they think it would get them? I can’t see why the CIA would do that. Iran in contrast did it because they thought Trump was weak and they are very unpopular at home. Attacking the great Satan and looking strong is about all they have left to appeal to their population these days.

      1. Gee, John, the level of adulation at that Suleimani funeral was pretty realistic for state run propaganda. I wonder who directed that film, dude. Well, the people of Iran love their Dear Leader the way you love our Dear Leader so don’t we all have something in common?

        1. We are talking about the embassy attack you fucking moron. You can’t even troll on the right subject. Just shut up and stop wasting people’s time.

        2. “Gee, John, the level of adulation at that Suleimani funeral was pretty realistic for state run propaganda.”

          Gee, scumbag, your fantasies of the population control in tin-pot dictatorships run under the threat of torture is pretty fucking idiotic.

    2. But we can all trust Dear Leader because he’s on our side, right?

      1. LeaveTrumpAloneLibertarian
        January.8.2020 at 1:22 pm
        Gee, John, the level of adulation at that Suleimani funeral was pretty realistic for state run propaganda. I wonder who directed that film, dude. Well, the people of Iran love their Dear Leader the way you love our Dear Leader so don’t we all have something in common?
        LeaveTrumpAloneLibertarian
        January.8.2020 at 1:24 pm
        But we can all trust Dear Leader because he’s on our side, right?

        You’re IQ cannot be underestimated

        1. He makes Biden look like a Mensian.

          1. Their hate drives them. And if you’re stupid to begin with, hate makes you extra dumb.

      2. “But we can all trust Dear Leader because he’s on our side, right?”

        Well, more than you and your supposed (adolescent) analysis, scumbag.
        Grow up, pay your mortgage and maybe someone here will take you seriously.
        Until then, stuff it up your ass to keep your head company.

    3. “it’s conceivable that some CIA ground operative slipped a low level street urchin $50 us to paint Soleimani’s name on the wall during the fracas”

      I do not doubt that Suleimani ordered the embassy attack. Kataib Hezbollah was his militia, and they’d been gradually increasing aggression and attacks for several weeks leading up to the embassy move.
      But, I am suspicious of the Suleimani graffiti.
      Ultimately, whether the militia wrote it as genuine celebration of their patriarch, Suleimani, or it was some US setup to clearly label the attack as his is immaterial.
      The Iranian regime’s aggression had been growing unchecked to the point that they killed an American and stormed the embassy.
      That needed to be stopped, and killing Suleimani was the best way to stop it.
      Everything from the killing of Suleimani on has been heading in the direction of detente (despite superficial appearances). So if the IC was manipulating events, they either a) want negotiations with Iran, b) wildly misunderstand Trump and his advisers as well as the situation, or c) just wanted Suleimani real bad. I don’t see any of those scenarios as all that convincing

      1. Oh no no no. Geraje Guzba insisted yesterday that the graffiti was PROOF that Soleimani ordered the attack.

        1. Notably, Geraje Guzba didn’t post the comment you’re replying to

        2. And you admitted that you trusted the IC determination but were disheartened at the lack of “skepticism.”

          In other words, as always, you wasted everyone’s time practicing for your special ed debate club.

        3. “chemjeff radical individualist
          January.7.2020 at 6:07 pm
          When your response consists of an insult, I know I’ve hit the mark”

          So you’re saying I’m the most correct person on this board for over a decade?

      2. I do not doubt that Suleimani ordered the embassy attack. Kataib Hezbollah was his militia, and they’d been gradually increasing aggression and attacks for several weeks leading up to the embassy move.
        But, I am suspicious of the Suleimani graffiti.

        You should be suspicious of anything that has a ribbon on it.

        1. something something Greeks, something something gift horses.

        2. Iranians admitted to launching missiles at US soldiers from Iran.

          That is literally casus belli.

    4. I wouldn’t be surprised if the Iranians were given targeting instructions so their “retaliation” wouldn’t kill anyone.

      1. By the new general that wants to live?

        1. Perhaps.

    5. I could easily see the CIA doing something like that. Or hell, why the CIA, it could also be the Brits or Saudis? The Iranians have been going after their tankers and Trump made it clear that he wasn’t gonna get involved unless they attacked us directly. It wouldn’t be the first time the Brits had us do their dirty work. It could also be as simple as “we have intel saying Suliemani is going to direct this, but we want something visual and easy to conceptualize to incite the sheeple”

      But you make very good points that are easily within the realm of possibility.

      1. Maybe it was Captain Cisko to get the Romulans involved with with the Dominion.

        1. It’s just an idea, mate. I don’t believe that’s what actually happened

          1. I was making a Star Trek DS9 reference.

            1. It was a joke.

      2. British intel is the most evil organization that’s ever existed

  8. This retarded shit could have been written by chemjeff himself. How many bitter pills do these people need to swallow to admit for a second that Trump was right? The cognitive dissonance is going to lead to someone having a stroke, or getting a better paying job at MSNBC.

    1. You’d think they would make a better argument. Do they seriously think the embassy attackers are not on camera? Really? I am quite sure there is exquisite footage.

      1. The egg on their face has hardened into a thick crust. Wringing their hands and insisting nothing is wrong is all they have left.

  9. My shocked face:

    Seriously. Morons just think that we can and should take out anyone whenever we choose. The same people cheering this would gleefully take out Kim Jong Un too without ever thinking of the larger geopolitical ramifications. They’re also the same people who can’t realize it’s a smokescreen to distract from impeachment too.

    1. Well, you don’t seem distracted.

    2. If Kim Jong Un attacks an American base or embassy then I would be fine with a retaliatory strike until then it is not a valid comparison

    3. “They’re also the same people who can’t realize it’s a smokescreen to distract from impeachment too.”

      Precisely.

      By literally starting World War 3 to distract from impeachment, Orange Hitler has actually strengthened the case for impeachment. Pelosi is in the driver’s seat now!

      This is the tipping point. The walls are closing in. It’s the beginning of the end.

      #Resist
      #Impeach

    4. Morons just think that we can and should take out anyone whenever we choose.

      See, THIS is the problem right here. Who gave the US military the right to be the world’s executioner of the “bad guys”? That’s the mentality that has to change in this country.

      I don’t believe the whole “distraction from impeachment” thing, that seems silly.

      1. Just killing bad guys who attacked the US first. We have been telling you that for 72 hours. But you keep ignoring the attack on US troops and embassy that proceeded the drone strike.

        1. Pedo Jeffy fully supports child rapists and terrorists over American citizens. So when I urge him to drink Drano, I do not believe I am being unreasonable.

      2. I’m concerned about the Soleimani case. This was an official in a recognized, sovereign nation. This wasn’t some stateless terrorist leader. I believe that there should be an active declaration of war to take out officials from recognized nations. Even in light of the attack– even if Soleimani was responsible, we need some sort of approval from congress.

        1. So, if FDR had word that Yamamoto was planning an attack on Pearl Harbor, and bombing it would have prevented the attack, FDR should have gotten a declaration of war before hand?

          1. I don’t think this begins to be an apt comparison, for a whole host of complex reasons.

            Yamamoto didn’t quietly plan to attack Pearl Harbor while sitting in his drawing room, with a plan to use a few dozen non-uniformed street urchins armed with AK-47s and molotov cocktails. The entire Japanese Military command planned the attack on Pearl with the direct blessing of the Emperor. Had we had wind of that attack beforehand (not going to make the deep dive on the secret history of whether we did or didn’t in reality), not only would we not have ‘taken out’ Yamamoto, taking out Yamamoto wouldn’t have done a single thing to stop it. What we probably would have done was immediately do a military buildup and prepare our defenses at Pearl harbor and sent a wire or cable via the Japanese ambassador warning that we knew said attack was planned, that we’re prepared for it, and that war was inevitable if they went through with it.

            None of this is to say that Iran operates like Japan does, or that Iran won’t use a subversive attack like this in an attempt to destabilize our middle east relations, but it seems awfully foolish of them to do so, given what they know our capabilities are when it comes to nullifying an existing government in any ME nation through military force.

            1. Not completely analogous but both were attacks on US soil. The embassy is considered US soil.

            2. Yamamoto was the primary planner of pearl harbor and Midway in 1942.

              Yamamoto convinced the Japanese high command of the feasibility of pearl harbor. He still fucked up because the US aircraft carriers were primary targets.

              He fucked even more because oil storage was low on the target list. Without fuel oil all the non sunk ships in Hawaii would have been stationary targets without oil tankers from the West coast that could have intercepted by Jap subs.

              Yamamoto was already hesitant to attack the USA because he saw personally how rich and industrialized America was. He knew Japan would lose… but orders are orders.

        2. He was the leader of a designated terrorist organization operating in a foreign war zone.

          Had we offed him flying into Monaco I’d find your concerns to be more concerning.

          1. “Oh don’t worry, we only kill people in *designated* terrorist organizations. Not a blank check! Oh by the way, we’re also the ones who do all the designating.”

            1. “chemjeff radical individualist
              January.7.2020 at 6:07 pm
              When your response consists of an insult, I know I’ve hit the mark”

              So you’re saying I’m the most correct person on this board for over a decade?

              Everyone can see you avoiding this.

            2. You are what.. 0-500 now on comprehending this part “operating in a foreign war zone”

              1. That’s funny, I thought Obama ended the war.

                1. What’s funny is watching you cower

                  “chemjeff radical individualist
                  January.7.2020 at 6:07 pm
                  When your response consists of an insult, I know I’ve hit the mark”

                  So you’re saying I’m the most correct person on this board for over a decade?

                2. Obama ended the war until he started another in Libya and Syria. Then he sent troops back in. So he ended it until he started it up again.

                  1. So eastern Iraq is part of the “foreign war zone” that Obama created (based on what authority, btw?) by fighting ISIS in western Iraq and Syria? But I thought Trump TOTALLY DESTROYED ISIS last year or so. So how is this a “war zone”?

                    It’s a sovereign nation, that’s what it is.

                    1. So he just moved into Western Iraq that is totally different (did we have troops redeployed to Baghdad as part of the operation? Why yes he did). The Iranian proxy militias attacked us first (in northern and Western Iraq) and when we responded they attacked out embassy. The expanded it beyond Western Iraq, not Trump. BTW Baghdad is central Iraq not Eastern Iraq, but that is nitpicking. And those

                    2. https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/2019_K-1_Air_Base_attack for your reference.
                      Also, it’s a sovereign nation that asked us to be there, ffs.

                    3. You are stretching the meaning of “war zone” to mean whatever is most convenient for your argument.

                      So Iraq is a war zone, even though the war has been over for years, except it’s not, when it’s time for Trump to kill some baddie.

                      Why not just say “Trump can kill anyone he wants anywhere in Iraq because ‘war zone'”

                    4. Tell the troops in Iraq that they aren’t in aware zone

                  2. And Iraqi Freedom has been over for years. But the war against ISIS, which started under Obama also was happening in Western Iraq. Different war same place is what I am getting at. Congress allowed Obama send troops back to Iraq under the original AUMF. So no combat operations have not been over in Iraq for years. And the Iraqis asked us to come back in. Like I said above. Get it now? Or do I need to draw a map?

              2. Pedo Jeffy doesn’t be’i be in sovereign borders or citizenship. So that means nothing to his dumb ass.

            3. Oh by the way, we’re also the ones who do all the designating.”

              It’s revealing you have to pretend Iran and Suleimani haven’t been “designating” these last decades for your criticism to make sense.

          2. I’m the first to admit that Soleimani operating in Iraq a the time our embassy was attacked is incredibly suspicious and history may judge this attack to be justified. It should certainly be observed as a warning to any other foreign power sending high ranking military officials into a conflict zone that they’re not in any way a part of.

            As I said above, it’s hard to form an opinion when you don’t trust any institutions anymore. Did we consult with the Iraqi government? I haven’t read all the news on this yet.

            1. The institutions you dont trust hate Trump.

              The enemy of my enemy is my friend. Temporarily at least.

        3. I believe that there should be an active declaration of war to take out officials from recognized nations.

          It raises the stakes considerably. Absolutely Congress should be consulted if the executive wants to start some fresh shit with a different sovereign nation.

          1. “chemjeff radical individualist
            January.7.2020 at 6:07 pm
            When your response consists of an insult, I know I’ve hit the mark”

            So you’re saying I’m the most correct person on this board for over a decade?

          2. start some fresh shit with a different sovereign nation.

            They’ve been killing our men for decades but somehow we’re ‘starting’ it. When reality doesn’t support your positions just ignore it.

            1. Killing one of their generals, an official representative of their government, is indeed “starting some fresh shit”.

              I am not saying to ignore it. I am saying that if the president wants to do something about it, go ask Congress for permission.

              1. In Jeff’s world one terrorist general is worth more than 600 Americans and tens of thousands of others.

        4. Congress? Hell no. If we need to move fast on intel, or if its classified material, the last thing we need is fucking Congress making it a media circus and dragging it out for weeks in front of the world just to score some points, and you know that they would. Use the judicial branch in this case, not the legislative. It’s not a perfect solution, because quite frankly any situation where we give the executive the ok to assassinate someone is going to be ripe for abuse, but the judicial branch already handles warrants, this is the logical place for it.

      3. The problem is your inability to comprehend an actual argument.

  10. As I mentioned in the other discussion:

    If a guy tries to break into my house, and I get my gun and scare him off, then that is self-defense, and completely justifiable.

    But, if I then chase the guy down the street, tackle him, and shoot him in the head, that’s no longer self-defense. That’s offense. That is decidedly less justifiable, even if the guy deserved it in some karmic sense.

    Claiming that the military was justified in taking out Soleimani as an act of “defending the US” stretches the meaning of the word “defense” way too far.

    “But the AUMF permits it.” The AUMF as written was a bad idea. If the AUMF that was written after the events of 9/11 and the one written authorizing invading Iraq is somehow still technically valid in dealing with a completely different enemy with a completely different set of circumstances, then that AUMF should be repealed and no antiwar libertarian worth his/her salt should be justifying the use of that AUMF for that purpose, EVEN IF the guy deserved it. Because continuing to excuse and justify poorly written AUMFs that permit endless war will undermine the entire effort to get us OUT of these foreign quagmires.

    “But the guy has American blood on his hands.” Okay, that’s bad, so should the US military be drone-striking everyone who has killed an American soldier around the world? EVEN IF they deserve it? The US military is not the world’s superhero figure striking down the evil bad guys. Maybe the US should stop acting like a bunch of imperialist assholes.

    1. //But, if I then chase the guy down the street, tackle him, and shoot him in the head, that’s no longer self-defense. That’s offense. That is decidedly less justifiable, even if the guy deserved it in some karmic sense.//

      Exactly what happen with Soleimani.

      This is why people abuse you.

      1. Jeff’s ‘hypotheticals’ are about as realistic as Espresso’s military service.

        1. The irony is that the little faggot is only alive because people like me and the other real vets here enlist in the military. Without us, he would be a gimp slave somewhere, or executed.

          1. But if he were taken hostage he thinks that we should first get Congressional approval before rescuing him and if the behead him in the mean time with a full pocket knife (which has happened) I guess that would be okay with him.

            1. It would be a fitting end for him, given the evil things he advocates.

    2. What if the guy who broke into your house had been actively shooting at you for the last 4 decades? Would that change your calculus on what is justified and what isn’t?

      1. “”actively shooting at you “‘

        You could add, and killing your neighbors.

        1. yeah very funny.

        2. Don’t think about it as an assassination Jeff, think of it as us aborting pre-natal terrorist attacks. I know you’re more comfortable with that concept.

    3. teh battle field which Iraq is is not comparable to a home defense situation and you know that

    4. You have to understand how poor your analogy is, right?

      1. And drone-striking Soleimani was an act of “self-defense”. Sure.

        1. When people insult you, it’s because you’e hit the mark, not because you’re an idiot. Sure.

          1. “chemjeff radical individualist
            January.7.2020 at 6:07 pm
            When your response consists of an insult, I know I’ve hit the mark”

            So he’s saying I’m the most correct person on this board for over a decade?

            I keep asking and he keeps running.

        2. No, it was an act of deference.

        3. Yes, it was an act of self-defense and allowable retaliation and deterrence. World politics and military usage are different than your analogy of a home invasion. Using your logic, the US could be attacked in any fashion (here or overseas) and unless we killed the person committing the attack during the attack, we would not be justified in doing anything. That is literally the dumbest position to take on this issue.

          1. By his logic, shooting down Yamamoto was unwarranted. Hell, declaring war on Japan was unwarranted.

          2. Add in that Japan declared war on the USA on Dec 8, 1941 Washington DC local time (7DEC1941 Japan time).

            That is like a burglar saying that he will break into your home every chance he gets, kill you and your family, and your dog.

            But you cannot defend yourself where and when you can. LOL

          3. It would not be justifiable *as an act of self-defense*.

            Using your logic, the US could be attacked in any fashion (here or overseas) and unless we killed the person committing the attack during the attack, we would not be justified in doing anything.

            Not without a declaration of war. At least after 9/11 there was an AUMF duly passed by Congress, as terribly written as it was.

            1. If a rapist has been raping people for 40 years and his most current victim kills him. Did she prevent anyone else from being raped? Or was it just vengeance. Or can it be both?

              1. Do you mean his current victim killed him in the act? That would be self defense. If his most recent victim killed him after the fact, that would be unacceptable. Private justice cannot be tolerated in a civilized society, regardless of how emotionally satisfying it might be in individual cases.

            2. The AUMF is still in place and gives Trump the permission he needed. The War Powers Act also gives him up to two days after the attack before he has to notify Congress. This is because in combat, you don’t always have the chance for Congress to posture.

              1. By calling Congessional discussion “posturing” you give yourself away.

                THEY are the ones who ought to have the authority to wage war. The executive is only there to tell the generals where to put the soldiers.

                1. SO you’re still ignoring the WPA and the AUMF? You are incapable of rational conversation.

                2. “chemjeff radical individualist
                  January.7.2020 at 6:07 pm
                  When your response consists of an insult, I know I’ve hit the mark”

                  So you’re saying I’m the most correct person on this board for over a decade?

                  It won’t go away just because you’re afraid to answer.

                3. “”THEY are the ones who ought to have the authority to wage war.””

                  Ought to? Yes. Do? No. You can try to take that up with Congress who has given the executive the ability via the WPA.

                  Also consider Congress gave up on “waging war” as we had known it to be up to WWII. AUMFs are now good enough. Maybe that shouldn’t be true, but for now it is.

                  1. Also consider Congress gave up on “waging war” as we had known it to be up to WWII. AUMFs are now good enough. Maybe that shouldn’t be true, but for now it is.

                    It is too bad, and it shouldn’t be defended or justified by anyone within shouting distance of these comment boards IMO. It is completely wrong.

                    1. Right but you’re still running

                      “chemjeff radical individualist
                      January.7.2020 at 6:07 pm
                      When your response consists of an insult, I know I’ve hit the mark”

                      So you’re saying I’m the most correct person on this board for over a decade?

                    2. So if there is an active situation, with limited time to act, should the President first get a declaration of war? How far do you take this? If Iran launches missiles at one of our flagged ships, should the President first seek Congressional approval before ordering them to fire back? Would Clinton have needed Congressional approval to have taken out Bin Laden when he received actionable intelligence on his location after the first WTC attacks? Sometimes, you have to be able to respond or act without the time for debate.

                    3. I’m reminded of the USS Cole, where they weren’t allowed to fire at the speedboat that would kill so many sailors

                    4. Eggs and omelets Nardz. Any action first requires Congreseional approval and a declaration of war.

                    5. Once again. In the course of an attack, go right ahead and defend yourself, without Congressional approval. I have zero problem with that.

                      It is what happens AFTER the attack is over that should require more sober judgment and a proper decision by the body of government that has the TRUE warmaking powers, and that is Congress not the President.

                      So therefore:

                      If Iran launches missiles at one of our flagged ships, should the President first seek Congressional approval before ordering them to fire back?

                      No, because that is by definition part of the attack.

                      Would Clinton have needed Congressional approval to have taken out Bin Laden when he received actionable intelligence on his location after the first WTC attacks?

                      Yes, because Bin Laden wasn’t actually attacking anyone at that moment.

                      I would rather err on the side of prudent restraint, than on the side of reckless warmongering.

                    6. “If Iran launches missiles at one of our flagged ships, should the President first seek Congressional approval before ordering them to fire back?”

                      But they’ve already fired the missile. After they’ve fired it, they’re no longer attacking. So you need congressional approval to fire on them, unless you fire at the exact moment the next missile is fired, and not one second later.

            3. “chemjeff radical individualist
              January.7.2020 at 6:07 pm
              When your response consists of an insult, I know I’ve hit the mark”

              So you’re saying I’m the most correct person on this board for over a decade?

          4. You’d think someone with such a well established history of being demonstrably ill informed and ill considered might (might!) question his pronouncements.

            But this guy just persists.

            1. He’s Reason’s own version of Sisyphus.

              At least Boehm is accomplishing something (if just a paycheck.)

              And you known damn well Jeff had to google ‘Sisyphus’ right after reading this.

              1. Hell, I wouldn’t be surprised if he had to look up who Yamamoto was.

    5. Your stupid ignorant sophist thought exercise would be more accurate if the guy breaking into your house had broken into all your neighbors houses and killed them, then killed one of your family members while moving in the house planning to kill more.

    6. If a guy tries to break into my house, and I get my gun and scare him off, then that is self-defense, and completely justifiable.

      But, if I then chase the guy down the street, tackle him, and shoot him in the head, that’s no longer self-defense. That’s offense. That is decidedly less justifiable, even if the guy deserved it in some karmic sense.

      This is not close to the Suleimani circumstance. A better thought experiment would be if he and others killed your wife and were searching the house for others to kill. Then when you killed Suleimani Jeff claims it’s outrageous because your wife was already dead making this a needless killing.

  11. Trump’s reckless and unpredictable version of Ronald Reagan’s “peace through strength” theory.
    Nothing reckless about it, it may have worked and we will never know for sure since we know that Irans surrogets will attack again just as they did before but maybe they won’t be so embolden to walk around bragging about it

  12. Details, details… hey, Iran is enriching uranium again and Iran basically called Dear Leader’s bluff, but what’s important is that Trump isn’t listening to any of these people in the GOPcalling forWAR!!! so i’ll Take this as good news.

    I wonder what the Iranians do next. {pops popcorn} I can’t wait to find out.

    1. Iran never stopped enriching uranium and increased attacks on the US. But ignore reality to further your false narrative.

    2. And it appears Iran is backing off, but again ignoring reality to fit your narrative.

  13. Lord. The need to criticize everything from Orange Man is just exhausting and trite at this point.

  14. FFS so much wrong:
    While Trump did not offer to open direct negotiations with Iran and spoke glowingly about the power of the American military—all while being flanked by uniformed military officials—his Tuesday morning address seems to suggest that the immediate danger of open war has, for now, been reduced ever so slightly.
    Of course it did. And why should the commander-in-chief of the armed forces speak glowingly about the power of the American military??
    Iran’s government has already expressed a desire to avoid further escalation,
    Those peace loving Iranians have brought us back from the brink!! <>

    so you can expect the president’s supporters to claim that developments in the past 24 hours vindicate Trump’s reckless and unpredictable version of Ronald Reagan’s “peace through strength” theory.
    Peace through strength wasn’t just Ronald Reagan’s theory. It is something attested to throughout the history of mankind. Strong good guys can deter bad guys. Whether its CCW in one’s local shopping mall, or geopolitics. “Si vis pacem, para bellum.

    What exactly has the saber-rattling of the past week accomplished for the United States?
    Jesus Boehm! You don’t even know what saber rattling is! It is posturing and talking and having large shows of military might, without actually attacking. We didn’t talk about attacking, we didn’t bluster. We took out Soleimani very matter of factly. As a matter of fact, it is almost the opposite of saber rattling.

    Killing Soleimani did not prevent an attack on American troops in Iraq; if anything, it appears to have triggered an attack, though thankfully there were no casualties.
    An attack that was either specifically designed to not cause casualties (thereby allowing Iran to save face domestically, without escalating because they fear US power) or was an example of how feckless their military really is. Either way, it is even more demonstration about how the US (with Trump’s leadership)won this.

    1. What else has the assassination accomplished? It’s given the Iranian regime an even stronger incentive to obtain nuclear weapons as a deterrent against future American aggression.
      Same bullshit during Hitler’s rise to power and during the cold war. Don’t do anything to make the evil regime mad!!
      It’s exposed, once again, the extent to which Trump has alienated America’s allies.
      What allies are these?
      And it’s given the Iranian government a martyr to use for domestic political purposes in rallying anti-American sentiment.
      So what else is new? No matter what we do, the regime rallies anti-American sentiment. Unless of course, it involves POTUS sucking Khomeini’s dick or something.
      Yes, Trump’s speech on Tuesday has reduced the chance of war with Iran. No, this was not a successful week for U.S. foreign policy, or for the man in charge of it.
      FFS Boehm, what color is the sky in your world?? Trump accomplished EXACTLY what he wanted without starting a war, or losing any American lives. It absolutely was a successful week for US foreign policy. Unless, one believes the only successful foreign policy is weakness.

      1. All good points.
        The fact that Boehm, and people like him, are still employed after continuously demonstrating their incompetence is an indictment of US businesses

        1. Boehm is still employed because he is providing exactly what his employers want. That he’s done to his credibility what that Hellfire did to Soleimani has not yet dawned on him.

    2. “so you can expect the president’s supporters to claim that developments in the past 24 hours vindicate Trump’s reckless and unpredictable version of Ronald Reagan’s “peace through strength” theory.”

      Except many of us Trump supporters, and even some who aren’t, predicted exactly this (seriously, go check the threads from the last few says).
      So yea – not unpredictable.

      1. “Trumpers pounce!”

        Much like the trade war with China, there’s nothing unpredictable here.

        The Establishment has had the US fold with a full house while our enemies bluff holding a pair for decades, and they wet themselves when Trump raises them back.

        The Iranians attack us yet again with faux plausible deniability using their proxies. Trump attacks back.

        Finally. After decades of accepting abuse, a US President holds the Iranians accountable. They bet. Trump raised. And the Iranians folded like a cheap suit.

        Of course they did. All the “OMG, it’s WAR! We’re all gonna dieeeeeeee!” was hysterical nonsense that *invited* violence from the Iranians. Punching them back ten times as hard established the cost/benefit ratio of attacking us.

        The #AmericaLast ninnies always focus on the harm the enemy can do to us, never noticing that we can easily inflict ten times the harm back, and how that will most likely *keep them from attacking us*, if only we demonstrate the will to strike back. Deterrence. Ninnies don’t understand it.

        I found a good article on the history of Iranian plausible deniablity via proxies, and how Trump has ended it.
        https://twitter.com/buybuydandavis/status/1215018315917082624

        1. Word.
          The ignorance of human psychology (physics) that’s so widespread and actively encouraged is annoying and dangerous

  15. “”As other observers have noted, it’s now fairly obvious that Soleimani’s killing was about vengeance, not deterrence.””

    Oh sure. It’s not like planning attacks is something a general does as part of their job.

    As predicted, the anti-war left is coming back out now that a dem is not president.

    1. “the anti-war left is coming back out now that a dem is not president.”

      And in this case, isn’t anti-war at all.
      Suleimani’s purpose in life was to wage war. He was pretty good at it.
      He would’ve continued doing it were he still alive.
      Bitching about his elimination is bitching about a reduction of war

    2. *Retribution* establishes deterrence.

      It establishes the cost of attacking us. You can have all the fancy weapons in the world, but if you lack the will to use them, you create no deterrence.

      They always knew we had the weapons. But they despised us for lacking the will to use them. Trump has the will.

      Weapons plus the Will to use them equals deterrence. Trump has established that he has the will.

  16. Far from dissuading an imminent attack, Trump’s impetuous decision to assassinate Soleimani actually provoked an attack. Which is exactly the same reasoning all good libertarians use when they decry conservatives exercising their rights to free speech when they know full well they will be attacked by left-wing fascists for doing so. If there’s nothing else all good libertarians support it’s the Heckler’s Veto. If you’re doing something or planning on doing something that will upset other people, you have a duty to stop doing that thing. You can choose whether or not to commit a given act, provoked people are unable to control their actions and therefore are in no way responsible for those actions. This is simple logic, folks.

    1. So was Iran attacking us, albeit through proxies and shooting down drones in international airspace before Trump ordered the drone attack? Why yes they were, so the most that can be argued is Iran is continuing their bullshit, while we killed one of the people most responsible for the attacks over the last two decades.

  17. >>What else has the assassination accomplished?

    you answer your own question calling it an assassination.

    1. Good point. I didn’t address that. It is referred to as an “assassination’ as if we off’ed a democratically elected official or something. We killed someone who was responsible for more death and destruction than Bin laden was, but in much the same way.

      1. We dont call the killing of Bin Laden an assassination because it wasnt.

        He was a criminal who should have been arrested and brought to court. He used someone else as a human shield and was shot dead. Dead criminal resisting arrest.

  18. Killing Soleimani did not prevent an attack on American troops in Iraq; if anything, it appears to have triggered an attack, though thankfully there were no casualties.

    The usual disclaimers here — I’m not a Trump fan, didn’t vote for him in 2016 and won’t in 2020 and would be happier if we got out of the ‘World Police’ business, but…how do we know that an attack wasn’t planned, called off in light of Soleimani’s killing, and that a minor, symbolic, face-saving missile attack was done instead? I generally think that government officials are more probably lying than not, but it’s not clear to me that what has happened since the missile strike proves anything at all.

    1. Good comment. At least there remains two actual Libertarians on this pitiful Trumptard vs. Leftard website. Unless the Pentagon releases the actual evidence to why the drone was dropped, we’ll likely never know. There are some essays being posted on various websites suggesting Soleimani was in Bagdad to foster a peace treaty with representatives of Saudi Arabia. Unknown.

      1. Lol
        Yep, Suleimani was in Baghdad with Iraqi and Lebanese militia leaders on a “diplomatic” mission

        1. Especially, considering the ones he was meeting with were known aggressors in the region.

        2. The Iraqi PM has specifically said he was going to meet with Soleimani re an Iranian response to peace feelers from Saudi. And the Iranian press release on the missile attacks specifically mentioned ‘permanent peace’ with Saudi.

          Maybe you can pretend that the US decides everything and knows everything in that region. But that just indicates how dumb you are. We have virtually no intel capabilities of our own outside signals – and Israel’s intel is WAY overrated.

          And guess what – Khamenei has just called the missile strikes a ‘slap in the face’ and not enough. Their goal is – as it has always been – to get us out of the region. Is your goal to keep us in the region forever – or at least until we get everyone there throwing them damn flowers at us and ululating? You think us leaving the region makes it more or less likely they negotiate some ‘better deal’ re JCPOA?

          1. The Iraqi PM is lying.
            It took them several days to even mention this supposed Saudi meeting.
            Why did it take so long?
            Why did they send their paramilitary general who’s banned by the UN from traveling abroad on a diplomatic mission… instead of a diplomat?
            (Yes, Suleimani went to Russia to meet with Putin about Syria. They were discussing military plans, and Purin asked for Suleimani to come personally. Because Suleimani is a military leader.)
            Why is Suleimani traveling with militia leaders involved in active combat operations for a diplomatic mission?

            I know you’re super emotionally invested in “USA bad. Orange Man dumb”, but that “diplomatic mission” dog don’t hunt

            1. Why shouldn’t the head of state of one sovereign government invite a member of the government of another sovereign state for a meeting if they so choose?

              Why does America feel the need to override the sovereignty of these decisions?

              Let’s just have a humble foreign policy. Can we go for that?

              1. “chemjeff radical individualist
                January.7.2020 at 6:07 pm
                When your response consists of an insult, I know I’ve hit the mark”

                So you’re saying I’m the most correct person on this board for over a decade?

                Everyone can see you dodging this because you don’t like the answer.

            2. It took them several days to even mention this supposed Saudi meeting. Why did it take so long?

              No it didn’t. It took Abdul-Mahdi 12 HOURS before he mentioned it. Which is probably not much after the death was actually verified on the ground. And then again on the Sunday before Parliament. That latter mention even made it to conservative UK newspapers often linked to by Drudge.

              Yes – I know you’re a fucking tool.

              1. Hey, rebrr last night when you told us your “friends” were over and you were dicking around on the internet?

                You got laughed at a lot because its a lie that would be worse if true lololo

                1. You still trying to hump my leg?

                  1. Ahahahahahah

                    YOU’RE STILL CRYING AHAHAHAHAHA

                    1. Jfree always lies.

              2. You’re repeating Iranian regime propaganda… and calling someone else a tool.

                Your descent into complete imbecility the past few days has been interesting.
                You used to occasionally make good points in idiotic ways, but now you’re just saying really stupid shit in idiotic ways

                1. ‘Iranian regime propaganda’ does not involve a time machine.

                  Pure and simple – you lied when you said ‘it took them several days’. All I’m doing is calling you on your lie.

                  1. Thank you for correcting the timeline.
                    Care to address any of the other points?

                    1. What other points?

                    2. Anything relating to why you think it makes sense the Suleimani, Iranian leader of foreign paramilitary operations who was with those paramilitaries, was sent on a diplomatic mission in the midst of active hostilities.
                      As opposed to sending any other diplomat at any other time.

                    3. What part of the general assertion post-mortem that he was the 2nd most powerful man in Iran – and would have likely become President of Iran if he had decided to run in 2017 – makes you think that sending a lower-level flunkie would have meant more ‘diplomatically’.

                    4. Why waste your time. Jfree is a liar.

            3. Have the Saudis admitted to any peace talks?

              1. Where we’re their diplomats for this supposed peace talk? And considering how US and Saudi are so close, why didn’t they call the President to let him know about the supposed peace talks?

                1. Why should they?
                  Maybe representatives of foreign nations can discuss things without America’s approval or permission. What a concept!

                  1. “chemjeff radical individualist
                    January.7.2020 at 6:07 pm
                    When your response consists of an insult, I know I’ve hit the mark”

                    So you’re saying I’m the most correct person on this board for over a decade?

                  2. Did I say they needed permission or did I ask why the Saudis haven’t backed up the Iraqi PM. And I asked a pertinent question about, given the history of ourbaloance, isn’t it suspicious the Saudis didn’t also notify us of the supposed meeting. But I realize it’s easier for you to make up others points rather than actually address what they truly said.

                    1. I challenge the very assertion that since the Saudis didn’t notify the Americans of some act that they were going to take, that this by itself should be regarded with suspicion. They aren’t American serfs. They are free to do as they please without notifying anyone of anything.

                    2. Why do you keep running?

                      “chemjeff radical individualist
                      January.7.2020 at 6:07 pm
                      When your response consists of an insult, I know I’ve hit the mark”

                      So you’re saying I’m the most correct person on this board for over a decade?

                    3. Again argue what I actually said. Also, are you now stating the Saudis are willing to send a diplomat into an active war zone, where a close ally’s embassy was just attacked and not bother to notify the same Ally of their presence? That seems safe.v

                    4. Which is more likely:
                      A) paramilitary leader meeting with paramilitary subordinates to plan more attacks, after carrying out a series of attacks
                      B) paramilitary leader escorted to diplomatic meeting by paramilitary subordinates as they take a break from their series of attacks
                      ?

                    5. No one has said the Saudis were going to be at that meeting. What was said is that soleimani was bringing the Iranian response to a message that the Saudis had sent the Iraqi PM.

                      The Saudis have little/no interest in dealing with Iran until AFTER they have some sort of deal with Iraq re how Iraq handles its own Shia/Sunni split. The last time – the Sunnis responded to a Shia crackdown by reforming AlQaeda/Baathists as ISIS. THAT is the mutual interest that Iraq and Saudi have.

              2. They sent Saudi envoys to the White House who arrived on Sunday. And have been far more transparent with the press about what their mission was than the White House has been.

                Course it wasn’t on Fox and Trump didn’t tweet about it and it doesn’t fit your narrative – so it didn’t really happen I’m sure.

                1. Since that story doesn’t say anything about peace talks with Iran being held in Baghdad, I’m not quite sure why you referenced it? Did you bother to read it first?

                  1. They weren’t in Baghdad. That’s just a strawman you’ve erected in your own head. See my comment above. And the article does state where to get more details re the Saudi visit – from the Arabic language press that the Saudis talk to. The Saudis themselves don’t give a shit about Fox or WaPo or NYT or American press.

                    1. And BTW – I have no doubt that Soleimani was gonna leave that meeting with the PM and then talk with the militias about how best to attack coalition forces in Iraq. I doubt anything he did was either-or.

                      And let me repeat – my problem with the Soleimani action is not what we did but the near certainty that whatever we did was not thought through at all. Trump doesn’t work that way – and from everything I’ve heard, he does not tolerate advisors who aren’t complete yes-men.

                  2. Wow! Jfree is so bad at lying that unreason looks like an angel here.

          2. No, the idea is that we can only withdraw from the Middle East once everyone has submitted to America’s will. Anything less, and Team Red will call a withdrawal “appeasement” and “surrendering to terrorists”.

            But we can’t exactly trust that they will continue obeying America’s dictates if we leave, so we have to remain indefinitely. To flex our military muscle in their backyard.

            And so it goes.

            1. “chemjeff radical individualist
              January.7.2020 at 6:07 pm
              When your response consists of an insult, I know I’ve hit the mark”

              So you’re saying I’m the most correct person on this board for over a decade?

              And so you dodge.

          3. 1. Madhi was a Iranian puppet that was put power by Soleimani, and is currently not even PM anymore; he’s just in an interim position. Right now there is no official government, because President Salih has been refusing to accept any government headed by an Iranian government due to the popular protests. He’s not in an a legitimate position to broker a “peace treaty.”

            2. Soleimani met at the airport the head of Kata’ib Hezbollah, the group that attacked the embassy. This isn’t a coincidence.

            3. There was no serious proposal from Iran that would have achieved anything with the Saudis. The Saudis have never been a threat to Iran — they would be happy if Iran just left them alone. The problem is all on Iran funding and arming Houthi rebels, using the land bridge to fund and arm Hezbollah in Syria. The Saudis also don’t trust Iran on the nuclear issue and have threatened to develop nuclear weapons themselves. What would a peace treaty accomplish? There’s nothing that the Saudis could have or should have conceded on. Anything meaningful would all have to be concessions from Iran. Does it make sense for that to be the basis of serious talks?

            In any case, the US would have known about any proposal, since they’re close to the Saudis.

            4. Madhi said that the purpose of Soleimani’s visit was to “deliver a letter” from Iran to the Saudis. Wth? Is Soleimani a delivery boy? Seriously?

          4. “The Iraqi PM has specifically said he was going to meet with Soleimani re an Iranian response to peace feelers from Saudi. ”

            Sure, and it’s entirely normal for foreign officials arriving to meet the Prime Minister to do so in the dead of the night with no official reception.

      2. At least there remains two actual Libertarians on this pitiful Trumptard vs. Leftard website.

        Wait… what exactly earned him his One-True Libertarian badge?

        I was distancing myself of Trump fandom, not voting for him in 2016, pledging not to vote for him in 2020, and suggesting that we get out of the ‘World Policing’ business well before this site devolved into Trumptards vs. Leftards. I’m pretty sure I’m not the only one.

    2. “if anything, it appears to have triggered an attack, though thankfully there were no casualties.”

      I’ll take a face-saving attack that harms no one over the usual endless parade of proxy attacks that kill Americans.

      How stupid can they be? You stop or deter the violent by *shooting back*.

  19. In the aftermath of the assassination of Iranian general Qassem Soleimani…. – this is a deliberate misstatement by Birdbrain Boehm. I get that Reason wants clicks, but let’s attempt to be factual about it.

    As a legal and factual matter, the general was an enemy combatant in a combat zone. He was a bad man. He had American blood on his hands. He deserved to die. Nobody should be sorry to see him transition from red jello to fertilizer.

  20. It’s caused the United States to deploy more troops to the Middle East, thus making any eventual withdraw during Trump’s first term even less likely than it already was.

    Point of order, you can’t get lower then 0%, where we already were.

    1. Or, the troops were deployed for a short term stabilization and will impact withdrawal only minimally. They are a QRF force. Rapid deployment but not designed for a long term occupation.

    2. The whining over withdrawal misses the point.

      We’ve still got 50k troops in Germany.

      We don’t need to wet ourselves over having troops abroad. It’s what they’re doing and what’s happening to them out there that matters.

  21. My heart goes out to all peoples who actively hoped the President would start WW3. It’s really hard when things work out for the US and in opposition to your political interests.

    1. But no pity for those of us stupid enough to believe Trump was telling the truth when he said he was going to bring home the troops we had fucking around in places we had no business fucking around in – if we were conned by the conman that’s strictly our own fault. Just the same as those of us retarded enough to believe he was actually going to lock up Hillary Clinton and all her criminal enablers (although truthfully Brennan and Clapper and arguably Comey don’t deserve prison so much as they deserve to be hanged for treason – giving aid and comfort to the enemy ain’t a stitch on actually being the enemy) or believed that he was actually going to build a wall or repeal Obamacare. We’re just suckers for having any hope that things might actually be different with a non-career politician in charge of things and we deserve no pity for being such colossal morons. Sad!

      1. Trump is great. Most campaign promises completed with a whole second term to complete more.

  22. Looking at the oh-so-predictable commentariat again, I am struck by how astute Walter Russell Mead is re his ‘Jacksonian tradition’ as one of the four ways Americans have always viewed foreign policy. And especially now with Trump – who is Jacksonian to his bones as is his base – as Prez.

    Mead’s more an American historian than an actual foreign policy strategy wonk – but his focus re how Americans have historically (and still )viewed the rest of the world is almost unique and valuable because of its uniqueness.

    1. Which Mead article in particular did you have in mind?

      1. For assessing Trump and his base re overall foreign policy – hard to beat the one he wrote on inauguration day.

        His articles re specific foreign policy issues always show just enough knowledge of those specifics to provide some insight re what we will do – but not enough to indicate alternative approaches or the range of debate here.

        1. So what time did your “friends” give up and leave you to sperg last night ajahahahahajaj

        2. That is a very good one. I will now probably have to pick up a biography of Jackson.

          1. “chemjeff radical individualist
            January.7.2020 at 6:07 pm
            When your response consists of an insult, I know I’ve hit the mark”

            So you’re saying I’m the most correct person on this board for over a decade?

            Why don’t you pick up this question and answer it.

          2. Actually he uses those names – Wilsonian, Hamiltonian, Jeffersonian, Jacksonian – as just a convenient label/shorthand/model for the way we Americans view the world and how we deal with it. Most Americans have a little bit of each one of those schools – but we usually lean to one/two as our personal default – and Mead actually has respect for all four of those ‘schools’ of thought.

            The book of his to read is Special Providence. For a history book on a dry subject, it’s a very easy read. It got completely ignored because its original publication date was supposed to be Sept 2001. It got delayed for a year (with a small afterword chapter re that) and as usual by that point no one cares HOW we debate foreign policy. That’s the one perpetual of Jacksonian school in particular. Normally, they don’t care about foreign policy at all. Not one whit. But once the shooting starts, a debate becomes near treason.

            1. Normally, they don’t care about foreign policy at all. Not one whit. But once the shooting starts, a debate becomes near treason.

              Sounds like 2002-2003 all over again.

              1. Mike Lee’s comment a couple hours ago re the briefing they just got from the administration re Iran fits exactly with Mead’s model:

                The Utah senator said the Trump administration briefers had communicated that Congress debating the appropriateness of future military action in Iran would “embolden” Iran…“They left after 75 minutes,” he said of the Trump administration briefers — “while they’re in the process of telling us that we need to be good little boys and girls and run along and not debate this in public.”

                The shooting has started. Anyone who defies the Presidential will or whim is now a traitor or near-traitor. That is totally Jacksonian. And only understandable when one understands that model/mindset.

            2. And thanks for the recommendation. I’ll have to add it to my book list.

        3. I started reading the “Gray Lady Comes Clean On Obama’s Middle East Legacy”, written before the election in 2016 when we weren’t sure who the next President was going to be but we were pretty sure it wasn’t going to be Obama, and saw this interesting passage:

          Interestingly, the piece does not mention the centerpiece of Obama’s Middle East policy: the nuclear deal with Iran. That deal, more particularly the decision to pursue it without regard to Iran’s regional behavior, will likely be seen by future historians not as the basis of Middle East stability as Obama hoped, but as a grave error that accelerated what one of the analysts quoted by the Times refers to as the “free fall” of the region in the waning months of Obama’s tenure.

          Yes, “interesting” that the NYT didn’t mention the nuclear deal with Iran.

      2. “chemjeff radical individualist
        January.7.2020 at 6:07 pm
        When your response consists of an insult, I know I’ve hit the mark”

        So you’re saying I’m the most correct person on this board for over a decade?

    2. Oh look, predictably Jfree and Jeff were wrong about the WW3 talking points but now imply all of us who predicted exactly this last night, are the ones who were wrong.

      1. Predicted exactly what? That everything would unfold within less than one news cycle? Is that what you are predicting?

        In fact I was the one who predicted YOUR reactions. That you commentariat types would just go along with the flow of the tweet storms and the new shiny objects of a news cycle – and the troops who are still in harm’s way won’t. And guess what – they are still on their way over to being in harm’s way. They haven’t even arrived yet and you’re already following the new shiny objects.

        1. We called the fact that Iran would back off after this missile attack multiple times, in response to you, last night. Anyone can go read the thread. Nardz was especially precognitive on it.

            1. “my friends are here laughing”

              Lolol you thought that was BETTER ahahahahaahhaha

            2. Except then his foreign minister came out after that announcement and issued another stating Iran is backing off. Boehm even referenced it.

        2. Actually both you and Jeff tried sadly attacking anyone who realized quickly the attacks were bluster last night.

          1. And without congressional approval to do so!
            Probably because they weren’t thinking things through

            1. And Congress was officially at recess and couldn’t be recalled.

              1. In time to actually make the decision before the opportunity to respond had passed.

  23. It’s hard to imagine how this whole episode could have gone much better for the US. Once again, the concern trolls in the media were 100% wrong about everything.

    1. #winning

  24. Once again, the concern trolls in the media were 100% gaslighting.

  25. “Killing Soleimani did not prevent an attack on American troops in Iraq; if anything, it appears to have triggered an attack, though thankfully there were no casualties.”

    Except for, you know…killing the general of a terrorist organization with major connections to other terrorist proxies, both of whom have killed Americans and our allies in Iraq and Syria for decades.

    I’m just going to keep calling you Chamberlain until you stop appeasing the fucking enemy. Put your country first man! We didn’t “provoke” an attack; Iran attacked our embassy in Iraq.

    1. Okay fine, so under what conditions can we withdraw from the Middle East without Team Red declaring any such withdrawal “appeasement”? Hmm?

      1. Simple. Iraq can formally ask us to leave. So can KSA. And Kuwait. And Dubai. And the UAE. And Afganistan.

        But not Turkey. They’re stuck. They’re in NATO (for now).

        1. And if they don’t? Can we leave anyway without cries of “appeasement” and “surrender” from the right-wing chest thumpers?

          1. And if you keep running? Can you ever save face?

            “chemjeff radical individualist
            January.7.2020 at 6:07 pm
            When your response consists of an insult, I know I’ve hit the mark”

            So you’re saying I’m the most correct person on this board for over a decade?

          2. Actually there are quite a few left wing hawks as well. Hilary Clinton was quite hawkish for example.

            1. Oh you are right. But it’s the right-wingers who love to make an ostentatious display out of it.

          3. Can we leave anyway without cries of “appeasement” and “surrender” from the right-wing chest thumpers?

            Of course. The sooner the better. That’s what Trump said and that’s what Americans want.

            It’s left wing globalists that keep wanting to misuse our military for “regime change”, “democratization”, and “humanitarian aid”.

      2. “chemjeff radical individualist
        January.7.2020 at 6:07 pm
        When your response consists of an insult, I know I’ve hit the mark”

        So you’re saying I’m the most correct person on this board for over a decade?

        Under what conditions will you stop running from what you said?

      3. No conditions. Our military should stop nation building, regime change, and humanitarian aid. We keep just enough drones and missiles in the region to strike back should countries like Iran mess with our shipping lanes.

        1. I guarantee, the moment you insist on leaving, the War Party will call you an appeaser who sides with the terrorists.

          1. Baby jeffrey making up strawman arguments again as he has been wrong in every post this weekend.

          2. You mean the GOP old timers? Sure. They are just as bad as the globalist in the Democratic party.

            But Trump and the American people both want to leave the Middle East, except for defense of shipping lanes.

  26. “Death to America “, said every mullah and/or Iranian leader since the Shah, ever. AFAIC any strike or incursion by the US on Iranian infrastructure or government official or surrogate is simply a reply to their declaration of war, little else. That would include any American operating as an Iranian surrogate

  27. > What exactly has the saber-rattling of the past week accomplished for the United States?

    It let Trump flex and prove to others that he’s a big man. A bigly man.

  28. Who writes the headlines? The writer?

    It’s fallacious to say that President Trump’s speech confirmed or denied anything regarding the killing of Soleimani.

    We don’t know now, and most likely will never know, the exact reason Trump chose to take him out. But to put words in his mouth is irresponsible.

    1. “Who writes the headlines? The writer?”

      We’ve had this discussion before. Even if the writer does not create the headline, it is his (or her, in the former case) byline appearing underneath, and so responsibility is attached.

      If Boehm does not wish to be associated with that statement he certainly can have it change (like she did) or add some addendum/update to the article, or make a comment here.

      In the absence of any such clarifying action the words are effectively his.

    2. They couldn’t care less, they are used to lies and distortions. Great job Reason!

  29. Two questions: (1) Who writes the headlines for all of these Eric Boehm articles? and (2) When did Reason decide do go full-clickbaity? The headline tells me that Trump’s Speech Confirms That Soleimani Strike Didn’t Prevent Imminent Attack or Make Americans Safer. Really, the speech “confirmed” that? Gosh, that must have been quite a speech, and I’m not sure why Trump would have wanted to give a speech confirming that we are no safer.

    While Trump … spoke glowingly about the power of the American military … his Wednesday morning address seems to suggest that the immediate danger of open war has, for now, been reduced ever so slightly. OK, first, doesn’t that contradict the headline, which told me the speech “confirmed” that we were not safer? And second, what’s with the “while”? I mean, this is getting into Fox Butterfield territory — it couldn’t possibly be that the danger of war has been reduced because we demonstrated the “power of the American military” and the resolve to use it.

    Iran’s government has already expressed a desire to avoid further escalation, so you can expect the president’s supporters to claim that developments in the past 24 hours vindicate Trump’s reckless and unpredictable version of Ronald Reagan’s “peace through strength” theory. Umm … yes?

    One could argue that killing Soleimani removed a dangerous opponent from the battlefield and that Soleimani’s absence will weaken Iran’s hand in Iraq, Syria, and elsewhere in the wider Middle East long-term. That’s certainly possible—plausible, even Hmm, still waiting for the part that “confirms” we’re not safer as a result of killing this guy.

    [But] it gives the Trump administration credit for a strategic angle that even the administration itself has not publicly claimed. Indeed, the White House has tried to justify killing Soleimani in the present tense (“imminent threat”) and past tense (retribution for killing Americans in Iraq), but never in such a hypothetical, future-looking way. Ah, so the attack may make us safer after all, but not for hypothetical, future-looking reasons that have been mentioned in a White House tweet, which makes all the difference because … well, I guess we’ll just have to trust Eric Boehm on that.

    But since it’s apparently VERY IMPORTANT to consider White House tweets, let’s look at some of the reasons Mike Pence gave for the attack. Unsurprisingly for a clickbait article of this type, Boehm acts as if the only tweet was the one saying Soleimani was “plotting imminent attacks on American diplomats and military personnel,” and feels that he hasn’t been fully satisfied of the “imminence” of such attacks, which makes it “obvious” that it was an “outright lie.” (I’m sure any other administration would happily let you look through their intelligence files, or post them online.) But that was only one of a long series of tweets, which noted Soleimani’s role in “[p]rovid[ing] missiles and other advanced weapons to terrorists throughout the Middle East,” his role in “financing, equipping, and training Lebanese Hizbullah forces conducting terrorist attacks,” his “[c]ontinued support to the murderous regime in Syria,” his “orchestrat[ion] and enabl[ing] the launch of missiles” in Yemen, his directing of “terrorist plots to bomb innocent civilians in Turkey and Kenya,” among other things, and concluded by saying that “The world is a safer place today because Soleimani is gone.” So, yeah, the administration has TOTALLY never justified killing Soleimani on the basis that it “removed a dangerous opponent from the battlefield.” Only the keen mind of Eric Boehm is able to conceive of (and then dismiss) such hypothetical, forward-looking benefits.

  30. As other observers have noted, it’s now fairly obvious that Soleimani’s killing was about vengeance, not deterrence.

    By “observers,” you presumably mean “journalists who agree with me,” since you link to George Packer, Spencer Akerman, and Rod Dreher (who says nothing about either vengeance or deterrence in his article, but does quote Eric Boehm extensively). Perhaps you should instead have looked to David Petraeus, who has a little more personal experience in these matters, and who said that “The reasoning seems to be to show in the most significant way possible that the U.S. is just not going to allow the continued violence—the rocketing of our bases, the killing of an American contractor, the attacks on shipping, on unarmed drones—without a very significant response. Many people had rightly questioned whether American deterrence had eroded somewhat because of the relatively insignificant responses to the earlier actions…. This is a very significant effort to reestablish deterrence, which obviously had not been shored up by the relatively insignificant responses up until now.” But what does he know?

    1. Spencer Ackerman? Dear sweet God. Linking to someone who confessed to being a propagandist on the Journolist willing to fabricate claims of racism? Why does it not surprise me that Reason thinks that’s a credible source?

  31. … it probably overstates the extent to which Soleimani was dictating Iran’s foreign policy and underestimates the resilience of the Iranian regime.

    There might be something to putting his replacement on notice the possible consequences to sponsoring terrorism against the United States or its allies.

  32. Trump’s Speech Confirms That Soleimani Strike Didn’t …Make Americans Safer

    This is a pretty stupid assertion since we can’t possibly prove it either way.

  33. I had to laugh out loud at the “obvious to other observers” line. GTFO.

  34. The very good news is that it looks like things are cooling down for now.

    Wars are full of miscalculations and mistakes. LC brought up Pearl Harbor.

    The Japanese made a strategic mistake. They thought that the attack would force Roosevelt to negotiate and lift his trade embargoes.

    They miscalculated by attacking when the carriers were at sea.

    They possibly could have won by invading and occupying Hawaii capturing a naval base capable of attacking mainland US forcing the US to negotiate.

    Other mistakes were made. The US primarily by underestimating and misreading Japanese intentions and strength resulting in inadequate defense and preparations.

    Hitler made the mistake of thinking that the US would be tied up in the Pacific and declared war prematurely. Instead the US pivoted to the war in Europe and focused on the Pacific later.

    On and on goes the folly of war and the leaders who start them.

    Anything can still happen. How about we focus on untangling the US from other people’s conflicts and get out of the Middle East and Afghanistan.

    1. Iran made a big mistake by thinking they could use their proxies to kill Americans and attack a US embassy in another country (not Iran which has no embassy for obvious reasons) and then send the guy who planned the attacks into the same country without any fear of reprisal.

      1. Sure they did but my point is those mistakes happen and the consequences can quickly spiral out of control. The whole region is a tinderbox. Perhaps we are just adding to the instability. We are godless armed foreigners there and unwelcome for the most part.

        I think we should get out. We are helping anyone at this point.

        1. I am for getting out but not right after an attack. Psychology needs to be taken into account. I would love for Trump to announce in a month or so that we are withdrawing. The US withdrawal from Somalia after the Battle of Mogadishu and the withdrawal from Saudi Arabia after the Riyadh towers bombing helped convince Bin Laden that he could attack the WTC without repurcussions.

          1. I would leave a carrier task force in the Indian Ocean in case Iran gets stupid and shuts down international maritime routes through the straits of hormuz.

            1. Talsk about cutting off your nose to spite your face. We are now a net petroleum exporter, and higher prices would only further aid our domestic industry. Closing the Straits is more of a problem for them (and China) than for us.

              The only real problem is it would also benefit Putin heavily, giving him a solid infusion of Euros.

  35. Try looking at the bright side……

    At least Solemani finally quit smoking.

    It took him a while after the flames finally went out, but he eventually quit.

  36. So first off, saber rattling? I think the author is ill informed as to what that term means. Trump did not rattle a saber, he pulled one out and cut the fucking head off that general. So that terrible faux pas aside, Trump has reset the board, there may now be some progress. No more pallets of cash for the Mullahs for starters. Is it a risk, yes, is it riskier than just doing nothing, probably not. This changes things. The missile attack last night, that was saber rattling…

    1. One of the many reasons Lefties can’t meme is because they don’t understand how metaphor works.

      For them, words don’t represent anything but the feelz evoked. Watching someone rattle a saber evokes the same feelz in them as thinking about Trump run one through Soleimani. Hence, “saber rattling”.

    2. No the missiles are accurate but not that accurate. They did attack at a time to minimize risk of casualties but still they took a big risk. If even a dozen US casualties had occurred things could be looking very different today. Both sides dodged a bullet for now.

      1. They didn’t just pick the time carefully, they also warned the American military ahead of time. And the impacts look minimal.

        1. From one satellite picture released to the news and what our government tells us.

          Doesn’t matter. Why is that base there to begin with?

          Iran handed us the perfect out. We win. Smart move for both sides.

          1. The satellite picture wasn’t “released” by the US government, it was taken by commercial satellites. And Trump didn’t claim that the US military was warned before, the media did. The base is an Iraqi base. The US is there because Iraq wanted us there.

            But I agree: we should get out. FWIW, Trump is the most likely to make that happen.

          2. “Iran handed us the perfect out.”

            I’d hardly call “running away in retreat because someone attacked us” the perfect out.
            You absolutely destroy the case for pulling out when you base your argument on abject fear and desperate submission.
            Better for you to just shut the fuck up, and let people with better arguments make the case.

  37. this is a joke right ? if not its pretty embarrassing

  38. Eric Boehm – another left wing superficial “thinker” leaps to a typical left wing reactive thought!

  39. Reason,
    A couple of thoughts. First, You have not apparently learned too not to respond to events until all of the data is in. Second, With your comments, you assist individuals who are not sure if they lean Right or Left to make their minds up.
    Sincerely,

  40. Folks…. without a doubt, this is a “hold my beer moment,” and Iran is paying attention…..

  41. This is an odd interpretation of events. They killed Iran’s top general, infuriating them, and the best Iran can do is a failed attack that seems designed more to tell their population that they did something than it was to be effective. They basically spouted off, stamped their feet, and then said we’re done now please don’t hit us again. Who knows the eventual outcome, but if the ayatollahs pull in their horns it could prove to be a big Trump victory. But yeah, he took a chance.

    1. But yeah, he took a chance.

      It’s not clear he even took a chance. Iran has been escalating their attacks for years now; without a response, it would have just gotten worse and worse.

      Hopefully, they’ll leave our shipping lanes alone. Other than that, they can have Iraq if they want it.

      1. Hopefully, they’ll leave our shipping lanes alone.

        They aren’t our lanes. Maybe the Europeans or India or China could maintain freedom of navigation. If not, perhaps people will further avoid trade in the region increasing the stagnation of already under civilized peoples.

        Either way not our problem.

    2. Irans reaction means we got the right targets and it hit Iran hard.

  42. his Wednesday morning address seems to suggest that the immediate danger of open war has, for now, been reduced ever so slightly

    There was never an “immediate danger of open war”, except in the delusional mind of DC intellectuals.

    What exactly has the saber-rattling of the past week accomplished for the United States?

    Is this just TDS in action or were you always this ignorant? I’m beginning to think in the case of most journalists, it’s the latter.

    1. They write with a bunch of sound and fury, signifying nothing

  43. Boehm the author is a complete effete moron with a juvenile understanding of Iran’s history of terrorism and instability in the middle east. For well over 8 yrs, all of the Obama term, the US has paid blood money and tried to appease the terrorist State.

    All we got in return were well funded terror attacks by Iranian proxies, and their total disrespect by shooting down our drones and other shows of force. Things that limp dick liberal Obama would have cowered away from.

    So, Boehm, what did the attacks accomplish? A complete reversal of effeminate US policy of appeasement, and a show of force that we aren’t going to take their shit anymore. Pretty sad that you couldn’t even see that, but given your liberal sensibilities (sarcasm) we shouldn’t be surprised.

  44. Straight from Beta Boehm’s bio:
    “Eric Boehm is a reporter for Reason. He lives in Arlington, Virginia, but will never consider himself a southerner.”

    Yep, too liberal and pompous to EVER be dare considered a southerner. That guy can go fuck himself, or to be honest, more likely Cuck himself.

    1. Boehm is a hack. He cannot report shit without lies.

      I blast that douche weekly because he deserves to be put to pasture like Jesse walker. Wastes of money. The whole lot.

  45. Reason writers get dumber by the day…it was about payback for prior attacks…something which you missed your last article on this topic…you should stick to calling stock market crashes every time it is down 1%

  46. “It also ignores the potential dangers of using assassinations as a tool of foreign policy.”

    I don’t know if anyone else has thought about this, but Trump may in danger from warmongers within his own White House, Cabinet, Senate or IC. If anything were to happen to Trump, it could easily be blamed on Iran now.

    That could mean full scale war with Iran as all the enraged MAGAs would demand it and many of Trump’s political enemies are warmongers.

    And it would certainly mean an end to the corruption investigation of Clapper, etc., which would be great for the so-called ‘Deep State’, whoever it includes.

    Trump has not tweeted today and his TV appearance was appalling, unlike other ones. He may have thought about this himself or even been threatened.

  47. It’s been quite a while since I’ve read the comment threads here. When did all the Trumpanzees take over?

    This had nothing to do with fixing anything with Iran, preventing imminent attacks, or ordering takeout Thai food. It had everything to do with Trump wanting a “short victorious war” to shore up domestic support by stroking the war-boners of his followers. It was all about Trump and his ego — he needed something to prove that he is really a “tough guy”. There were (and are) many ways to deal with extremist activities that threaten our people and assets. Ways that are quiet and effective. But Trump chose a very noisy, public, and ham-fisted way to deal with the so-called “imminent threat” because what he really wanted was attention.

    Anyone who knows anything about the internals of Iran will tell you that this has given the current aging Islamist theocracy a fresh new martyr with which to further bolster anti-American sentiment, secure its stranglehold on internal politics, and stymie the secular opposition who have been growing in recent years.

    1. “It’s been quite a while since I’ve read the comment threads here…”
      gee, we hoped you’d died.

      “…When did all the Trumpanzees take over?…”
      Not fucking TDS victims spend half their days coming up with ‘clever’ nicknames which embarrass 1st-grade kids. Proud of yourself? What did you get for your 15th birthday?

      “Anyone who knows anything about the internals of Iran will tell you that this has given the current aging Islamist theocracy a fresh new martyr with which to further bolster anti-American sentiment, secure its stranglehold on internal politics, and stymie the secular opposition who have been growing in recent years.”
      So far, you’ve shown yourself to be a TDS victim with nothing close to knowledge. WIH would anyone believe your assertion?

  48. So American troops aren’t American?

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