Fundamental misunderstandings of the Iran situation

The ignorance of Americans about the rest of the world has been the subject of jokes for decades.
However, that ignorance isn't funny when it gets us into wars.
For instance, Trump's approach appears to be to apply more and more pressure to Iran, bringing us closer and closer to war, in order to force them to negotiate from a position of weakness.
In theory there is some logic to this strategy. However, Iran refuses to negotiate. So what's wrong with this strategy?
Answer: Iran's internal political environment.

Trita Parsi, who is the founder of the National Iranian American Council, argued that Trump’s move to step up economic pressure on Iran is not going to work, arguing it is in Tehran’s best interest to stand firm, even if it means risking military confrontation.

“For them, giving up and essentially capitulating to the United States is complete political suicide,” Parsi, who is also a professor at Georgetown University, told Hill.TV on “Rising.”

“They will lose all of their legitimacy if they were to do so,” he continued.

“There is no way out for them,” he said. “That’s part of the reason why it is actually much clearer incentive structure for them to stand firm, even risk a military confrontation, count on Iranian nationalism and rally around the flag rather than coming to the table and essentially have to completely cave into Trump’s demands.”

What's missing here is even a modest effort at understanding your opponent. It's the same mistake we keep making in every war we've fought on the Asian continent.
And that's not the only misunderstanding of the situation that the Trump Administration is guilty of.

Esper faces a tall order, however. His first major appearance in his new job will be Wednesday at NATO, the alliance that Trump has frequently bashed as a collection of freeloaders.
And European leaders have appeared cool to the U.S. approach to Iran...Germany, France and Britain, as well as Russia and China, remain part of the nuclear deal that Trump abandoned last year.
...Esper, 55, was a top lobbyist for the defense contractor Raytheon Co. before becoming Army secretary in November 2017.

At this point I'm modestly surprised that Esper even bothered to stop being an official lobbyist of Raytheon when he became Army Secretary. Why not keep both jobs? It's not like Esper, or anyone else in the Trump Administration, represents the citizens of the United States.
What's more, no one in Europe is being fooled either.
france.PNG
However, the biggest misunderstanding of the situation is what the nature of the war will be. Washington is massively overconfident.

Asked if a war was brewing, Trump told Fox Business Network: “I hope we don’t but we’re in a very strong position if something should happen.”

“I’m not talking boots on the ground,” Trump said. “I’m just saying if something would happen, it wouldn’t last very long.”

It's amazing that 19 years of losing in Afghanistan has failed to teach us any humility.
What's more, there are already boots on the ground. Iran's forces are free to enter Iraq and Syria, and they can't be stopped from entering Afghanistan.
Nearly 20,000 American troops could be under attack within days.
And then there is the underestimation of Iranian capability.

The RQ-4 Global Hawk is one of the U.S.’s most sophisticated intelligence-gathering devices. It can peer into countries from outside their borders and is able to fly as high as 60,000 feet, a greater altitude than many fighter jets. Yet Iran’s elite Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRCG) was able to detect it, and shoot it down with a surface-to-air missile fired by the Iranian-made Khordad 3 air defense system.
Tags: 
Share
up
26 users have voted.

Comments

The Aspie Corner's picture

besides that which makes Donnie the Douchebag and his idiot spawn profits? Or how about his Gentricraptic fluffers who continue to give him and the rest of the capitalist pigs EVERYTHING they want at our expense while playing up the McResistance, McStrikes and the McMarches for the cameras?

Every one of these assholes deserves nothing less than a public execution.

Edit: Fine. I'll quit saying that.

up
6 users have voted.

Modern education is little more than toeing the line for the capitalist pigs.

Guerrilla Liberalism won't liberate the US or the world from the iron fist of capital.

TheOtherMaven's picture

@The Aspie Corner

"tar" being replaced with something that can be applied cold and washed off later (Elmer's?).

The point is that public ridicule lasts forever.

up
4 users have voted.

There is no justice. There can be no peace.

@TheOtherMaven
Saw the effects of public caning while in Singapore. Very strict traffic violation enforcement. Since the wealthy just pay the fines and go on, the threat of too many fines with a public caning consequence diminished the repeat offenders.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Caning_in_Singapore

up
2 users have voted.

May we be united and strong -- laurel

The Aspie Corner's picture

@TheOtherMaven

up
2 users have voted.

Modern education is little more than toeing the line for the capitalist pigs.

Guerrilla Liberalism won't liberate the US or the world from the iron fist of capital.

link

The United Arab Emirates would not back US accusations that Iran was responsible for attacks on four oil tankers off the UAE coast because it would need “scientifically confirmed” evidence to do so, its foreign minister said.

“We cannot accuse any nation at the moment because we don’t have indisputable proof,” Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the UAE foreign minister said Wednesday during a joint media conference with his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov in Moscow.

up
14 users have voted.

@gjohnsit

up
8 users have voted.
Pluto's Republic's picture

His first problem.

up
9 users have voted.

The purpose of a writer is to keep civilization from destroying itself.
– Albert Camus
Alligator Ed's picture

@Pluto's Republic WTF do you mean Persians aren't Arabs (that's pronounced A-rabs, with emphasis on the A)?

Brings me back to the days of Saint Ronnie": "Once you've seen tree, you've seen them all."

up
7 users have voted.
ggersh's picture

@Pluto's Republic

up
5 users have voted.

trump will be amerika's last president

There is no way in the American political system to vote against the interests of GS, JPM, Citi, ATT, AMZN, MSFT, WM, Alphabet, FB, APPL, Exxon Mobil, Lockheed Martin, UHG or Northrop Grumman.

@Pluto's Republic to your comment to explain differences?

up
0 users have voted.

dfarrah

thanatokephaloides's picture

@dfarrah

[Pluto's Republic,] Will you please add more info to your comment to explain differences?

Simply put, Persians aren't Arabs.

As for the ramifications, Pluto, we still need vous assistance, please.

Smile

up
6 users have voted.

"I say enough! If Israel wants to be the only superpower in the Middle East then they can put their own asses on the line and do it themselves. I want to continue to eat."
-- snoopydawg

@thanatokephaloides more info, too, about the impact of Persian vs. Arabs on negotiations.

up
1 user has voted.

dfarrah

TheOtherMaven's picture

@thanatokephaloides

the basic Iranian stock is either Indo-European or Proto-Indo-European (even the experts disagree), and they've been basically where they are now for at least 5000 years.

The people(s) we think of as "Arabs" are Semites (Arabic is a Semitic language and has a lot in common with Hebrew, even though neither side likes to admit it) and erupted out of the Arabian peninsula about 1400 years ago - there have since been overruns by peoples from farther East, e.g. several flavors of Turks, who are neither Indo-European nor Semitic.

The Islamic wave washed over Persia fairly early on, and the Persians (Iranians) agreed to adopt the religion in exchange for being otherwise let alone. They've been doing things pretty much their own way ever since, much to the annoyance of the orthodox....

This is an over-simplification of a very complicated picture.

up
7 users have voted.

There is no justice. There can be no peace.

Was in the 19th Century a ship with a large cargo ship wrecked on the UK Western shores I believe it was. The cargo included a monkey. The English residents thought it was a Frenchman and killed it. I am not sure we have evolved much in how the English speaking world sees "outsiders".

up
10 users have voted.

most of the world into rubble like at the end of WWII, then won't it have created the exact circumstance that lead to America being great like in Trump's boyhood? It's 14-dimensional chess, I tell you.

There is the problem of the US avoiding rubble-ization, but why worry?

up
6 users have voted.

@jim p

up
5 users have voted.
ggersh's picture

Victorious warriors win first and then go to war, while defeated warriors go to war first and then seek to win”
― Sun Tzu, The Art of War

tRumpolini/MIC does this backwards

for amerika winning wars is a bug, not a feature

up
8 users have voted.

trump will be amerika's last president

There is no way in the American political system to vote against the interests of GS, JPM, Citi, ATT, AMZN, MSFT, WM, Alphabet, FB, APPL, Exxon Mobil, Lockheed Martin, UHG or Northrop Grumman.

@ggersh
“If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.”

― Sun Tzu, The Art of War

up
6 users have voted.
Big Al's picture

Who is we? It's not me, it's not my family. And really, are they mistakes, that's been discussed extensively. 19 years of occupation isn't necessarily a mistake, it's a plan that keeps working, i.e., they're still there and no one can do a damn thing about it. And they're not necessarily mistakes depending on who is benefiting. I think you're talking about the ignorance of Trump, the ignorance of the American people is of a different type. US intelligence and the military understand Iran's capabilities and internal political situation. Trump has obviously been briefed that an option is overwhelming US military force can neutralize Iran quickly, and that might be true. It worked in Iraq and although Iran is not Iraq, it isn't Russia or China either. I think there are some on the left that underestimate US capabilities as well. Regardless, as commander is chief, what's he supposed to say, "our military sucks and Iran is better than we thought so all my threats of war are just bullshit"?

up
9 users have voted.
ggersh's picture

@Big Al @Big Al WTF go to war when the last one you guys won was back
in 45 and Russia helped quite a bit in getting that outcome.

But somehow he and family get a kickback for all of this
so the rest is just the understated kabuki theater.

Regardless, as commander is chief, what's he supposed to say, "our military sucks and Iran is better than we thought so all my threats of war are just bullshit"

up
6 users have voted.

trump will be amerika's last president

There is no way in the American political system to vote against the interests of GS, JPM, Citi, ATT, AMZN, MSFT, WM, Alphabet, FB, APPL, Exxon Mobil, Lockheed Martin, UHG or Northrop Grumman.

So the only kinda indepth question our media asked in tonight's debate was about Iran's support to Hezbollah. Like it was an evil nation supporting terrorism. And the question was presented in such a way that it had to be answered the correct American way. Of course no one was questioned on support to Saudi and their support of Wahabi terrorism. Our whole discourse as a nation sucks.

up
9 users have voted.

So the only kinda indepth question our media asked in tonight's debate was about Iran's support to Hezbollah. Like it was an evil nation supporting terrorism. And the question was presented in such a way that it had to be answered the correct American way. Of course no one was questioned on support to Saudi and their support of Wahabi terrorism. Our whole discourse as a nation sucks.

up
1 user has voted.