more on the bombing of the Saudi aramco oil processing field


This image provided on Sunday, Sept. 15, 2019, by the U.S. government and DigitalGlobe and annotated by the source, shows damage to the infrastructure at Saudi Aramco’s Abaqaiq oil processing facility in Buqyaq, Saudi Arabia. (click for larger)

Given that gjonsit’s thread from Sept. 15 is still continuing, it may not be necessary to put this up, but I thought I could add a few bits, and you’ll add more.  Needless to say, Iran is getting all the evidence-free blame, Houthi claims of being the authors of the swarm of precision hits notwithstanding, nor are other possibilities. 

Bill Van Auken in his 17 September 2019Washington’s rush to indict Iran over Saudi attacks’ notes that most major media coverage follows the same trajectory, but the war crimes KSA has committed in Yemen for four and half years is never mentioned.  He includes the facts that over 100,000 citizens have been killed, 8 million are on the brink of starvarion, and that the US Navy has been helping to blockade ships with food and medicine from arriving.  He reminds us that US warplanes, bombs, missiles and logistical support have contributed to the near genocidal blood bath.

“On Monday night, television news broadcasts quoted unnamed intelligence sources, citing unspecified evidence, claiming Iranian responsibility for the attacks. No doubt this “evidence” will prove just as compelling as that of the Gulf of Tonkin in Vietnam and “weapons of mass destruction” in Iraq. These same media outlets have made virtually no mention of Saudi crimes in Yemen.” [snip]

“If what the Yemeni Houthis say is true, that they sent a swarm of 10 weaponized drones to attack the Saudi facilities, then the action was clearly an act of self-defense, far less than proportionate to the slaughter inflicted by the Saudi regime against Yemen.

Meanwhile, Washington’s new ambassador to the United Nations, Kelly Craft, repeated the charges against Iran on Monday before a United Nations Security Council meeting on Yemen. Providing no more proof than Pompeo did two days earlier, merely repeating the formulation that “there is no evidence that the attacks came from Yemen,” she described the damage to the Saudi oil installations as “deeply troubling.”

(As it turns out, Craft is married to the Kentucky coal baron Joe Craft, a top R donor, which hints at why she’s so utterly cavalier about the massive suffering in Yemen.)

“On Saturday night, President Donald Trump made a call to Crown Prince Mohamed bin Salman, the kingdom’s de facto ruler, offering his condolences and unqualified support to a man exposed as a cold-blooded murderer. Bin Salman is responsible not only for the grisly assassination and dismemberment of the Washington-based journalist Jamal Khashoggi at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul nearly a year ago, but also the beheadings of at least 134 people in just the first half of this year, 34 of them political activists slaughtered en masse on April 23.” [snip]

“It there is, as Washington claims, “no evidence” that the attacks were launched from Yemen, one could, with equal if not greater justification, observe that there is likewise “no evidence” that they were not launched by the US itself, or by its principal regional ally, Israel.

If one proceeds from the age-old detective maxim of Cui bono? or “Who benefits?” Tehran is the least likely suspect. There is clearly more to Washington’s rush to judgment than meets the eye.

The attack on the Saudi oil facilities provides a casus belli desired by a major section of the US ruling oligarchy and its military and intelligence apparatus, which is determined to prosecute a war for regime change in Iran. Such a war would be the latest installment in Washington’s protracted drive to reverse by military means the decline of US imperialism’s global hegemony, in particular by claiming unfettered US control over the world’s energy reserves and the power to deny them to its rivals.”

The Wall Street Urinal approves on Lindsey Graham’s ‘bomb them back’, says Iran is testing Boss Tweet’s mettle, suggested Trump ‘apologize to John Bolton’, etc.  He makes a case for Bibi’s being at the center as he faces election today.  He (and Likkud and allies) needs at least 61 seats in the Knesset to keep Rule by Bibi alive…for now.

“US strikes against Iran carried out under the pretext of retaliation for the attacks on Saudi Arabia can trigger Iranian counterstrikes, sending US warships to the bottom of the Persian Gulf and wreaking havoc on American military bases throughout the region.”

A fact which Trump’s generals are aware of, so we can hope that reason, not conflagration, carries the day.

b has a third post on the subject up: ‘Damage At Saudi Oil Plant Points To Well Targeted Swarm Attack’, Sept. 16, 2019 with more information, speculation, maps, and US govt. satellite imagery.  He describes the purpose of the stabilization facility as:

‘The stabilization process is a form of partial distillation which sweetens “sour” crude oil (removes the hydrogen sulfide) and reduces vapor pressure, thereby making the crude oil safe for shipment in tankers. Stabilizers maximize production of valuable hydrocarbon liquids, while making the liquids safe for storage and transport, as well as reduce the atmospheric emissions of volatile hydrocarbons. Stabilizer plants are used to reduce the volatility of stored crude oil and condensate.’

Then brings some Twitter language from the Chief US diplomat, Mafia Mike Pompeo:

Secretary Pompeo @SecPompeo – 21:59 UTC · Sep 14, 2019
‘Tehran is behind nearly 100 attacks on Saudi Arabia while Rouhani and Zarif pretend to engage in diplomacy. Amid all the calls for de-escalation, Iran has now launched an unprecedented attack on the world’s energy supply. There is no evidence the attacks came from Yemen.
We call on all nations to publicly and unequivocally condemn Iran’s attacks. The United States will work with our partners and allies to ensure that energy markets remain well supplied and Iran is held accountable for its aggression’

He brings another satellite image of the facility than the one at the top of the OP, but offers these descriptions:

“The pictures show some 17 points of impact. There are cars visible in the second more detailed picture that demonstrate the gigantic size of the place. The targets were carefully selected. At least 11 of those were egg shaped tanks with a diameter of some 30 meter (100 foot). These are likely tanks for pressurized (liquidized) gas that receive the condensate vapor from the stabilization process. They all have now quite neat holes in their upper shells.

Damage to any one tank or group would not stop the production process. The products would be routed to another similar tank or group. But with all tanks of this one special type taken out the production chain is now interrupted.”

“The targeting for this attack was done with detailed knowledge of the process and its dependencies.

The north arrow in those pictures points to the left. The visible shadows confirm the direction. The holes in the tanks are on the western side. They were attacked from the west.


(click Control / + for larger)

“The hits were extremely precise. The Yemeni armed forces claimed it attacked the facility with 10 drones (or cruise missiles). But the hits on these targets look like neither. A total of 17 hits with such precise targeting lets me assume that these were some kind of drones or missiles with man-in-the-loop control. They may have been launched from within Saudi Arabia.”

b’s link above goes to ‘Meet the Quds 1’ by Fabian Hinz, September 15, 2019 armscontrolwonk.com.  Check it out, it’s fascinating and full of speculative and contains actual evidence of the Quds1 v. the Iranian Soumar cruise missile.  I checked, and precision cruise missiles can be launche from submarines, bombers, and even from huge trucks.  This paragraph is blink-worth excerpting:

“What made this attack different from other recorded Houthi drone attacks was not only the unprecedented amount of material damage caused but also lingering doubt about the nature and the attribution of the attack. First, a video allegedly showing flying objects entering Kuwaiti airspace led to speculation that like a previous “Houthi” drone attack this strike might actually have originated in Iraq or even Iran. While the video remains unverified, the fact that the Kuwaiti government launched a probe into the issue lends some credence to the idea that something might have happened over Kuwait that day.

Others claimed it was the Quds 1, a recently unveiled Houthi cruise missile often claimed to be a rebranded Soumar.”

back to b:

“The U.S. and Israel are able to commit such attacks. Iran probably too. Yemen seems unlikely to have this capability without drawing on extensive support from elsewhere. The planning for this operation must have taken months.” [snip]

“Saudi Arabia has no defenses against this kind of attacks. The U.S. has no system that could be used for that purpose. Russia is the only country that can provide the necessary equipment. It would be extremely costly, and still insufficient, to protect all of the Saudi’s vital facilities from similar swarm attacks.”

And right on cue from RT.com: ‘Putin to Saudi Arabia: Our air defenses can protect you, like they do Turkey and Iran’, 16 Sep, 2019

“Putin cited the Koran to admonish the Saudi coalition’s war on Yemen, saying that the Muslim holy book said the only legitimate form of violence was self-defense and, in that context, spoke of the Russian-made missile systems as a possible solution.

Iran has operated the S-300 missile systems since 2017, and the first batch of the S-400s was delivered to Turkey in July. Ankara’s purchase of the S-400s has caused it significant strife with Washington, which is refusing to deliver Turkey’s F-35 fighters, fearing that their computer systems will be compromised by the Russian weaponry.”

(cross-posted from Café Babylon)

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Alligator Ed's picture

S400 vs Patriot Missile systems

S-400 can engage with 72 targets simultaneously and track 160 targets at the. Same parameters for Patriot are 36 and 125 targets
S-400 locates a target at 600 km distance and can destroy at 400 km range (with the latest 40N6E missile that just has been successfully tested). Patriot can locate a plane at 180 km and an enemy’s missile at 100 km
S-400 is able to down targets flying as low as 10 meters and as high as 30 km while Patriot PAC-3 destroys its lowest target at a height of 50 meters with the highest at 25 km
The deployment time for S-400 and Patriot PAC-3is 5 minutes and 25minutes respectively.
Various informed sources have said that to hit an aircraft with a probability not less than 0.99, one will have to launch 1-2 S-400 missiles or 2-3 Patriot missiles. In case of fighting off a ballistic missile attack the ratio will be 1 / 2 or 3 in favor of S-400.

While this is not directly correlative to the attack vehicles, clearly neither S400 or its predecessors ould have been used being surface-to-air, as opposed to surface-to-ground missiles, other ballistic instruments as well as drones could be outfitted with proper munitions to cause the pin-point damage observed in the post-action refinery photographs.

According to the article cited, it is clear that the S400 compared solely to the Patriot (which was notoriously terrible in protecting Israel against Saddam's missiles) is superior. Probably a helluva lot cheaper to produce and operate as well. This thanks to our wonderful MIC.


The Patriot system's usage during actual deployment situations has left room for doubt over its performance. For example, after the 1991 Gulf War it was revealed that only a per centage of Iraqi SCUD missiles were actually shot down by Patriot batteries guarding Saudi Arabia and Israel. In case of the Iraqi missile strike against the American military barracks in Dhahran (Saudi Arabia) in February 1991 the failure of the Patriot intercept left to a tragedy – 27 troops were killed, about 100 wounded. In 2003, also the overall performance was better; there were also cases of failed intercepts of the outdated ballistic missiles launched by Saddam’s army in the first days of the invasion. The effectiveness of Patriot systems proved to be low despite almost ideal conditions: low-speed targets, solitary launches, absence of ECM environment and false targets. After 1991 and 2003 significant upgrades are reported to be made but the Saudi experience of countering the Yemeni missiles (comparable to the ones used by the Iraqis) shows almost the same lack of efficiency – see November 2017 missile attack against Riyadh.
Combat use of the Patriot systems has also highlighted some shortcomings of the system: high sensitivity to sand ingestion and unstable electric supply. There have also been reports of accidental launches.

US missiles supplied to Saudi failed to prevent Abha Airport Attack

Saudi Arabia’s US supplied air defence systems failed to stop an aerial attack, the second in two weeks on Abha international airport which led to the death of one person and injuries to 21 others.
Launched by the Houthi rebels in Yemen, the drone fell on the parking lot of the airport on Sunday night. A previous missile attack had led to damage to the arrival hall of the airport leading to the death of 2 and injuries to several. According to the Houthi-run Al-Masirah TV, Houthi rebels used drones to target airports in Abha and Jizan.

So, despite the rather defective equipment sold to our "allies", even the Houthis could do damage to Saudi facilities in June this year. The weapons in the June attack lack the sophistication of those striking storage receptacles at the Abqaiq and Khurais oil refineries.

Higher magnification of the 11 domes in the right half of image one were likely made by shaped charges, which are not the usual armaments of drones.

So what does this all mean?

False Flag to excuse US "liberation" of Iran?
Attempt to crash economies world-wide due to hugely rising oil prices?
Genuine attack by Houthis to end the Yemeni insurgence of Saudi Arabia?

The stories don't match up. Photos, including the one immediately above show far more loci of destruction than the mere 10 admitted to by the Houthis.

The fact that the targets were struck from the West is a total non issue because they missiles are steerable. The missiles could have entered Saudi air space from any direction. There is in fact speculation that the missiles were launched in Saudi territory.

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wendy davis's picture

@Alligator Ed

i'd at least grasped a mall bit of your comment and comparisons, lol. fascinating that you think that b's surmise 'they came from the west' is bogus, though. and here that's the only reason i'd put in the map, dagnabbit. iirc, he'd said there was no news on the attacks on the khurais refinery: why not, big brained alligator?

as a side note, i was just at the jerusalem post to check on the election results, and there's a little side-bar ticker noting that the saudis are saying that all production has been restored. sounds like fake news to me...

now also at the defense world site was this one: ‘Iranian Drone Display at Russian Airshow May Hold Clue to Attack on Saudi Refinery’, September 17, 2019

but it's as greek to me as most of your comment an comparisons. if there's any there there, might you try to put it into plain-speak?

at least no one's launched strikes on iranian refineries, nuclear installations...yet. (i could read zarif's tweets all day boy, howdy, does he bust some chops, esp. the thug pompeo's.)

good guesses on possible conclusions, but i'm not high on the 'crashing the world's economy'...yet. the clown prince had said they have reserves, and the US said they could dip into amerikan strategic reserves if necessary.

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Alligator Ed's picture

@wendy davis provides at least one reason why the missiles striking Saudi refineries were successful. The drones can operate as low as 33 feet 910 meters) from the ground. The table I included in my comment indicates that Patriots can not detect/defend against missiles flying lower than 50 meters. Thus Patriots would be totally ineffective against low flying drones.

Drones are highly maneuverable, so the initiation of the flight path has no bearing on most flights plans--especially on flat Saudi plains with no obstacles to preclude such maneuver.

As to why there is a paucity of news about Khurais, I have no answer other than that what can you expect from either El Trumpo or the MSM? Does ya expect a nice steamy bowl of truth?

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wendy davis's picture

@Alligator Ed

myownself. but the dim bulb lights now and again: could each drone have been carrying more than one precision ballistic missile?

ta for interpreting the second piece, as well.

and RT has it a bit differently: Oil supply is back to what it was before the attack, but we don't know yet who is responsible - Saudi energy minister

'Saudi Arabia’s energy minister said that its oil supplies had resumed and that its oil market would be “fully back online” by the end of September following attacks which Washington blames on Iran while Riyadh is still probing.
...............
"We are asking the world to help us to help secure oil," he said, adding that Riyadh expect no decline in oil exports and "no oil cargoes were canceled."
The attacks on refineries at Abqaiq and Khurais slashed Riyadh’s output by 50 percent and knocked out more than five percent of global daily production. Saudi Aramco CEO Amin Nasser says, however, that it is now producing “two million barrels” from Abqaiq.

Nasser said Saudi Aramco is still in the process of estimating the repair work that needs to be carried out on the refineries. He also said the kingdom's petroleum reserves were effective in coping with the crisis.'

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Alligator Ed's picture

@wendy davis total explosive payload--but small shaped-charges needn't be very large. Think about tank destroying missiles, such as fly by wire or by laser painting.

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wendy davis's picture

@Alligator Ed

but do i read: inconclusive but maybe?

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Alligator Ed's picture

@wendy davis For a butterfly, you're good at deciphering milaterese.

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Pluto's Republic's picture

...than I expected.

It's too bad the US geostationary satellites floating over every hot spot in that hemisphere always malfunction whenever something like this happens — and we never have any evidence of a critical missile launch from where we insist it was fired.

The satellites also malfunctioned when flight MH-17 was shot down over Ukraine. And they malfunctioned when Russia allegedly invaded Ukraine and Crimea. (I really wanted to see those. The Russian invasions must have been magnificent!)

I've simply assumed all along that the US supplied weapons to the Saudi Sunnis, and Iran supplied weapons to the Shia Houthi of Yemen. Then the Saudis commenced their bombing of civilian targets and extermination of the Shia (with the US taking pot shots from off shore and blocking all deliveries of medicine and food to Yemen). And, then the Houthi fired back.

Why is this such a mystery? Why so much confusion? Iran has no motive and they certainly deny it, with great indignation. They are taking it to the UN.

Anyway, since US satellite cameras were apparently off-line again at the instant that these missiles were launched. The US has offered no evidence or visual record of the blast. If we want to blame a third party, then we should go with a cui bono approach — and once again, that points to Israel with a false flag.

Nice work, Wendy. I'm going back to finish reading.

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Alligator Ed's picture

@Pluto's Republic

Anyway, since US satellite cameras were apparently off-line again at the instant that these missiles were launched. The US has offered no evidence or visual record of the blast. If we want to blame a third party, then we should go with a cui bono approach — and once again, that points to Israel with a false flag.

In fact Israel may have been responsible for J Epstein's exitus. Bibi in the little black book?

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wendy davis's picture

@Pluto's Republic

i'd forgotten about flight MH-17, but it's clear that the Roosians did it! but no radar over US military bases? inside saudi arabia? the jpost says that iran is building a huuuuuge military base in syria, prolly nuclear, as well.

neck and neck between bibi and gantz; me, i'm rootin' for gantz. bibi says he'll wait until after he's elected to announce the Kushner I/P 'peace plan of the century. if elected, he can ram thru that joint US/israeli military treaty and his 'immunity for him' (war crimes and corruption) bill.

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wendy davis's picture

@wendy davis

part of netenyahoo's recent campaign rhetoric amounted to: 'Only I can keep you safe!' safe from whom? the evil iranians who mean to wipe israel off the face of the earth.

gawd's blood, i haven't had time to check w/ the election results. RL's gone kinda tits up here. gantz is being tried for war crimes by a dutch court on election day. but iir, he actually does want a peace plan with palestinians, whatever that amounts to in the end.

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Pluto's Republic's picture

@wendy davis

...that this display of asymmetrical warfare from the Houthis/Yemen may have just ended the Middle East shitshow, leaving the US, the Saudis, and Israel dead in the water. Better analysts than I have made the case for this sudden and unexpected change of fortune.

War today isn’t just fought with soldiers, bombs, guns and drones. It’s fought in all theatres including the commodities futures and forex markets.

At some point escalation can only go so far. The U.S. tries to intimidate anyone from ghosting their ships to ship Iranian oil and Iran says, “Look, we’re serious. If we can’t ship oil, no one can.”

.
^^^ This is now the official policy of Iran from here forward.

Think about it for one second. Using the U.S. Navy to impound oil tankers in International waters will create chaos on the Arabian peninsula engulfing the entire region. The US will be suckered into acting as the policeman of the world — which is certain economic suicide that Trump promised never to allow. Moreover, he lacks the constitutional power to use the US military to serve Saudi interests

As for Saudi Arabia, its strategic weakness has been exposed. Bernard at Moon of Alabama seems convinced the war is effectively over for them. Yemen's considerable tactical achievements signal that the Saudis would have no rational defense of its infrastructure in a wider conflict. The Houthis demonstrated the capabilities of their drones and missiles, which were assembled in Yemen with the help of Hizbullah experts from Lebanon.

The attack conclusively demonstrates that the most important assets of the Saudis are now under threat. This economic threat comes on top of a seven percent budget deficit the IMF predicts for Saudi Arabia. Further Saudi bombing against the Houthi will now have very significant additional cost that might even endanger the viability of the Saudi state. The Houthi have clown prince Mohammad bin Salman by the balls and can squeeze those at will.

.

The Saudis have paid a steep geopolitical price for their brutal aggression. Mohammed bin Salman's botched attempt to overthrow Bashar al-Assad in Syria, his blockade of Qatar, and his strong-arm attempt to force Lebanon into a political realignment has been a disaster for everyone involved. They have alienated members of the Gulf Cooperation Council and put their American benefactors in Washington in very hot water, politically.

Geopolitical writer, Tom Luongo, offers a persuasive summary of the probable wind-down for the US in the Middle East:

In the US, the war in Yemen is deeply unpopular. And our continued support of it is now wholly owned by President Trump, who vetoed a bill to withdraw U.S. support of the Saudis’ efforts there. He did this to support Israel and the Jared Kushner/Bibi Netanyahu plan to coerce a surrender of the Palestinians.

So, make no mistake, Iran knows where the fulcrums are. They know which of Trump’s buttons to push. And the Houthis just pushed a big one.

The Saudis have money, and the ear of the U.S. political elite, and not much else. They are living on borrowed time as they still run big budget deficits thanks to low oil prices, which will continue to go lower, because of this attack.

Why? Because, the markets will again trade on the lack of response from the U.S. not the incident itself. This will further hasten the collapse in the global oil price as the end of the Yemeni war will take that threat of war with Iran further off the table in the long run.

This is especially true as we approach the end of the grace period Iran gave the European Union to get back into compliance with the JCPOA. Because once they are done legally withdrawing from the agreement per its terms, then Iran will be free to pursue Russia’s offer to buy and resell up to 1 million barrels of Iranian oil per day, stabilizing exports.

Trump has already proven he’s unwilling to blow up the oil markets, and, by extension, the larger financial markets to bring Iran to heel. Everyone has their price. And the price of these low-tech drones from from Yemen create the ultimate in asymmetric warfare. A few thousand bucks to paralyze trillions in capital.

Now that’s the Art of the Deal.

.

When is someone in D.C. going to finally realize there is no winning play with Iran anymore, except peace?

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

@Pluto's Republic

my friend, and thank you for such a deep and detailed comment. [your fonts to the gods' ears.] i'll need to respond in several stages. first, today's news, or recent news, time zones are tough for me to reckon with.

i'd hoped to wake up and be able to pen a quickie post: 'so long bibi; may the wind beat your back'. but the race is still too close to call, dunno when the final tally will come, but it's all fraught with charges of bibi's illegal tampering.

second, jpost, al jazeera, others are reporting these bit similarly:

The US Mission to the United Arab Emirates said said Secretary of State Mike Pompeo will meet Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in Jeddah to discuss the attack and coordinate efforts against "Iranian aggression".

Pompeo will then travel to the UAE capital Abu Dhabi to meet with its crown prince, Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed, and discuss regional and bilateral issues, it added.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif may not go to the United Nations General Assembly next week as the US has yet to issue them visas, according to state media.

The Saudi defence ministry said it will hold a news conference at 14:30 GMT to present "material evidence and Iranian weapons proving the Iranian regime's involvement in the terrorist attack".

and bin salman is trying to convince moon jae-in in to provide air defense for KSA (obviously taking the houthi at their word: more is on the way, as your link showed. bad-ass hardware. i was impressed with b's link to armscontrolwonk.com and the tweaks they made with quds1 from the soumar.

anyhoo, via the jpost, all sorts of links to cbs news reports like this:

U.S. intel shows cruise missiles fired at Saudi oil facility came from Iran, officials say; The Department of Defense has advocated for restraint, but it has provided a briefing on military options to President Donald Trump.

"Three U.S. officials previously told NBC News there was extremely compelling evidence showing the origination point of the strikes, and one official with direct knowledge described that evidence as imagery." and of course they're always 'anonymous' intel officials.

good news is trump still seems to get what regional war would do to mr. market:

Trump admin weighing retaliatory action against Iran after Saudi oil attack
In a national security meeting on Monday
, U.S. military leaders provided President Donald Trump with a menu of possible actions against Iran.

and breaking news at the top of the page: trump tweets he's ordered mnuchin to substantially increase sanctions on iran.

on post-toast edit: ‘Washington steps up threats against Iran over strikes on Saudi oil facilities’, Bill Van Auken, 18 September 2019

“What actions Washington will take over its unsubstantiated charges against Iran—and when—is far from clear. Defense Secretary Mark Esper and Gen. Joseph Dunford, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, joined other national security officials at the White House on Monday to present President Donald Trump with a range of military options, which reportedly include US airstrikes on Iranian oil facilities and military installations. It has also been reported that the seizure of Iranian ships on the high seas—an act of piracy—together with cyber attacks are under consideration.

The US military command is, according to officials who spoke to both the New York Times and the Washington Post, cautioning against major military action against Iran, fearful that it could provoke Iranian attacks on the 70,000 US military personnel deployed at bases and on warships scattered throughout the region, all of them within range of Iranian ballistic missiles. The military brass also sees such a conflict as a diversion from US imperialism’s overriding strategic objective of preparing for confrontation with “great power” rivals, in the first instance, China and Russia.”

with 90% of the votes counted, With 90% of vote officially counted, Blue and White edging out Likud 32-31; Left-wing bloc leads the right with 56 seats to 55; Joint List expected to secure 13; Yisrael Beytenu on course to decide the makeup of next government

here we are: ‘Where do we go from here? All the options for a ruling coalition Unity government? Liberman plus the religious right? Gantz getting Arab support? With inconclusive results, someone will have to compromise to avoid 3rd elections in a year’, times of israel

weakened and without an electoral mandate, bibi won't attend the UNGA to meet trump next week, but will send FM katz in his place. he'll remain to shore up support from other parties to form a coalition government (including the ultra-orthodox).

'Trump names new US national security adviser after Bolton’s ouster
Appointment of Robert C. O’Brien,
special presidential envoy for hostage affairs at the State Department, announced on Twitter, today

i'd have sworn i'd seen something at the jerusalem post about the saudis having shown their evidence, but all i've found so far is this from RT.com:

'Saudi Arabia accuses Iran of sponsoring oil-plant attack, says it ‘couldn’t have originated in Yemen’, 18 Sep, 2019 15:04

Speaking to the press on Wednesday, a spokesman for the Saudi Ministry of Defense displayed what he said was wreckage from the projectiles used in the strikes on petrol plants in Abqaiq and Khurais last weekend.

The type of weapons used proved that the assault “could not have originated in Yemen,” Colonel Turki al-Malki claimed. He said the capabilities of the drones and the cruise missiles have been known to Riyadh from previous attacks.

(a point of origin map)

The attack was launched from the north and unquestionably sponsored by Iran.

He also presented surveillance footage from one of the oil facilities, claiming it depicted a drone in flight, though the UAV was difficult to make out in the video.'

garsh, colonel al-malki; how do we track down the surveillance video, crap though it may be?

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Pluto's Republic's picture

@wendy davis

Which is what you have to do when a false flag is being ginned up.

I found newspapers from back in june or july 2019 , with photo spreads of brand new drones and other weapons that Yemen was displaying for a world audience. They were manufactured in Yemen. Experts from a number of countries, including Lebanon, participated in helping Yemen build a defense. Yemen's weapons acquisition was no secret.

Yemen officials seem to suggest that this attack was launched from inside Saudi Arabia with assistance from sympathetic Saudi nationals. It is the beginning of the retaliation against the unspeakable brutality of four years of Saudi attacks, according to some comments I've seen. I'll dig up the links and post them back here. The US has a narrative and opinionated bureaucrats. No convincing evidence yet that Iran launched anything.

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wendy davis's picture

@Pluto's Republic

with this hasbara nonsense from sky news live at al-malki's press conference in riyadh, live:

short on twitter:

longer broadcast from sky news: are they really chanting death to amerika and death to the UK? if not, go fuck yourselves sky news 'journalists'.

i remember your noting that yemen was aided by hez in lebanon building their weapons of defensive war, but this?

Yemen officials seem to suggest that this attack was launched from inside Saudi Arabia with assistance from sympathetic Saudi nationals.

it certainly begs the question 'where did they get the drones (or planes) and precision missiles? another Q: boss tweet had been waiting for the saudis to show their evidence before retaliating, in the video pence is over-ready, likely others. i had to laugh at an earlier report that 'even dems are urging DT to retaliate swiftly!' as if both parties aren't war parties, and the D's seem to be especially a CIA party.

im way behind on my chores, then i'll try to read more of your links more closely. yes, you've been doin' some deep diggin'. for me it's more a visceral reaction as this empire hates sharing power, money, and influence, and i can smell bullshitredux fairly easily. tragic, really, if one imagines how 'cooperation' might have gone. not: all is zero sum; is that a western concept?

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Pluto's Republic's picture

@wendy davis

Yemen has had a revamped military arsenal since May 2019.

They have retaliated against Saudi Arabia with coordinated precision over a dozen times since then. Yemen announced their new war capability on July 7, 2019. The limited attack of Saudi oil fields is nothing new. It's just one of many precision weaponry, retaliatory attacks against Saudi Arabia by the Yemeni military during 2019. Iran is not participating. It is not in their geopolitical interest to do so.

Yemeni armed forces display new domestically-built missiles, drones

Middle East – Yemen [Updated: Sun Jul 7, 2019 02:38PM ]

Yemeni Armed Forces have unveiled new domestically-built ballistic and winged missiles plus drones during a ceremony in the capital Sana’a. This latest equipment could change the balance of power in favor of Yemen.

For more than four years, Yemen’s army and allied popular forces — led by the Houthi Ansarullah movement — have been defending the country against a devastating Saudi-led military campaign meant to reinstate a former Riyadh-friendly government.

The war has so far claimed over 91,000 lives and taken a heavy toll on Yemen’s infrastructure, plunging the Arabian Peninsula’s already poorest nation into “the world’s worst humanitarian crisis.”

However, despite having the West’s strong logistical support, the Saudi regime and its partners in crime have failed to make the Yemeni people submit to the language of force, prompting them, instead, to join forces — under Ansarullah’s auspices — in boosting Yemen’s defense capabilities and responding to Riyadh’s acts of aggression.

In 2019, the Yemeni army stepped up counter-attacks — using domestically-built drones and missiles. The US, the Saudis, and Israel are all well aware that Yemen has been producing and delivering a new level of deterrent power in the region. Blaming Iran is a lie and a false flag to pave the way for an unjustified attack on Iran.

Pass this on to the People. Do not let the war criminals get away with this. Again.

All year, Yemen’s military has been delivering a strong warning to the Riyadh regime, saying Yemeni forces stand ready to carry out further and more delicate operations deep inside Saudi Arabia.

Deputy Yemeni Minister of Information, Fahmi al-Yusufi, has repeatedly warned the Saudi aggressors that “they are within the range of our attacks, and US battle ships cannot rescue them." The Yemeni army, which previously did not even have Kalashnikov rifles in inventory, can now produce drones that infiltrate into Saudi Arabia and the UAE. "We are fully prepared to defend our soil," says the Deputy Yemeni Minister. These attacks attest to our military progress despite the ongoing sea, land and air blockade on Yemen.”

The following is a timeline of Yemen's retaliatory raids on targets inside Saudi Arabia beginning on May 14 — when the Yemenis carried out the first major precision drone strike on Aramco facilities:

May 14, 2019: Saudi Arabia stops pumping crude oil on a major pipeline across the country in the aftermath of Yemen’s drone strikes on two of Aramco’s stations west of Riyadh along the East-West pipeline. Saudi Arabia halts pumping crude oil on a major pipeline in the wake of Yemen's retaliatory drone strikes.

June 12, 2019: The Saudi-led coalition confirms a retaliatory missile strike by Yemeni armed forces on the Abha International Airport in the kingdom’s southwestern Asir region. The coalition says a Yemeni missile hit the airport’s arrivals hall, causing material damage.

June 17, 2019: The Ansarullah movement and its allied forces target an airport in Abha.

June 20, 2019: Yemeni forces attack a power plant in Jizan Province southwest of the kingdom using a cruise missile.

July 2, 2019: The Yemeni military targets a hangar for military warplanes in the Abha airport. The attack leaves several people injured, according to Yemen’s al-Masirah television network.

July 7, 2019: Yemeni Armed Forces unveil new domestically-built military hardware, including ballistic and winged missiles in addition to unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV).

August 1, 2019: The Yemeni armed forces say they launched missile and drone attacks on a camp of Saudi-sponsored militiamen loyal to the country’s ex-government in the port city of Aden, killing dozens of them, including a commander. In a separate attack, Yemeni forces use long-range ballistic missiles to target a military base in the city of Dammam located hundreds of kilometers away from Yemen in Saudi Arabia’s Eastern Province.

August 2, 2019: Yemeni Armed Forces unveil a new generation of domestically-built Borkan (Volcano) long-range missiles.

August 5, 2019: The Yemenis fire long-range missiles at the port city of Dammam.

August 17, 2019: Houthi fighters launch a drone attack on a remote oil and gas field in eastern Saudi Arabia.

August 25, 2019: The Houthi movement targets an airport and an airbase in southwestern Saudi Arabia with drone attacks.

August 26, 2019: Yemeni forces use a squadron of Sammad-3 (Invincible-3) combat drones to strike an “important military target” in Riyadh.

September 14, 2019: The Houthis deploy as many as 10 drones to bomb key oil facilities in Abqaiq and Khurais.

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Yemen's game-changing drone and missile operation has halved the kingdom’s oil and gas output. It will bring Saudi Arabia to its knees and stop this war. The UAE is already onboard with Yemen after its extended show of force.

The cowardly European nations are well aware that blaming Iran is a set-up for a false flag operation. But they close their eyes and say nothing. Just as they did when the US orchestrated the overthrow of the newly-elected Ukraine government in 2014, letting Russia take the blame and suffer illegal US sanctions. There will be a reckoning.

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

@Pluto's Republic

i was going to suggest press tv; i even looked there to see if they had the 'crap' video colonel al-malki had played at the press conference in riyadh.

thank you for adding it all.

i've been slowly working on a 'israel election kinda sorta results' post, but two fascinating things are being reported in the israeli press. one is that Trump says he hasn't called netenyahu, and is distancing himself from the weakened PM, and that 'our relationship is with israel.

the other is weird as all giddy-up, but it's being claimed the sheldon adelson and his wife (a shrink?) won't fund nuttyahoo any longer because 'he's crazy'.

one's forced to wonder WTH? with the EU and iranian sanctions, but they're in a tizzy over Brexit on both twitter accounts.

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Pluto's Republic's picture

@wendy davis

He should move to Boca Raton with his landsmen, not far from Trump's Mar-a-Lago resort. Maybe they can steal some high ground and build new settlements as the waters begin to rise.

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

@Pluto's Republic
"B'emet (really), you're from Scarsdale? Well then we're landsmen -- I'm from Teaneck!" (said in Florida)

but i thought most landsmen were in Great Neck. ; ) looks like the trumpeter wants to let the dust settle before he sees him again...and if he's PM again. dunno if he'll be able to form a coalition or not. likud is behind in seats, but barely, and now the horse-trading starts in earnest (and w/ caveats a-plenty). and you know 'the importance of being earnest'... goddam, i'd love never to see his nasty face again.

but great idea about finding higher ground when the water rises. sounds like ben shapiro's advice, according to an e-friend.

anyhoo, thanks for all your additions to this thread, upside-down pluto.

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wendy davis's picture

@Pluto's Republic

Netenyahu got a fish wrapped in a newspaper.

the rahm emanuel maneuver. ; )

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wendy davis's picture

@Pluto's Republic

stir into the mix: saudi arabia has the third largest military budget on the planet, yet they can't defend themselves from drone missiles. read: only an aggressive, war-making military, perhaps also like amerikas. and like amerika, all diplomacy is now shotgun diplomacy, with war by other means (killing sanctions and blockades, including VZ, cuba) and threat of war..

yes, 'our partners in peace' have worn out their welcome in yemen, as has the largest exporters of democracy violence on the plant: the US empire and lackey states.

we'll see what comes next, and i hope that includes sanity, if just pragmatic.

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Not Henry Kissinger's picture

but seriously, who couldn't see this coming?

I'm sure this will go well... Submitted by Not Henry Kissinger on Thu, 08/29/2019 - 11:32pm

The Trump administration is preparing to initiate negotiations with Iranian-backed Houthi rebels in an effort to bring the four-year civil war in Yemen to an end, The Wall Street Journal reported Wednesday.

Peace Talks Round 1:

Peace Talks Round 2:

And why is the US stepping in like KSA's older brother in the first place anyway?

MbS picked this fight. What does Trump hope to gain by owning the clown prince's defeat?

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Peace Sells

wendy davis's picture

@Not Henry Kissinger

gorilla man! i'd read the negotiator's name somewhere along the line, but of course...it meant nuttin' to me. close to 'striker'? kinda reminded me of an AG named 'loretta lynch'.
was she the one who'd happened to meet obomba on an airport runway to make some deals? but honest injun, all they talked about was their chirren?

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Alligator Ed's picture

@wendy davis Lying Loretta had her tete-a-tete with none other than Wild Bill Clinton on her plane parked at Sky Harbor's tarmac.

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wendy davis's picture

@Alligator Ed @Alligator Ed

it? oh, my, yes, my mental faculties have degraded to an embarrassing point. even when i'd written at the FDL readers diaries, folks were tryin' to laugh me off the boards for pipsqueak things like confusing nawth and south car-o-li-na.. how fucking rude of them, i say!

soon you'll do the same. but i'll blog until you pry my keyboard out of my cold...dead hands. ; )

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Alligator Ed's picture

@wendy davis or was that a confusion with my fever dream that Bernie got elected and this was 2016? Seems the state is actually Confusion.

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wendy davis's picture

@Alligator Ed

genetically modified (Bt corn). silly mon, this IS 2016; says so right here on my screen. you might need some high cbd cannabis and turmeric to get your brain started, gator man.

ain't got the time to check who the president is; it's all promises, promises, hopes and changes. and it get worse for us rubes all the same.

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wendy davis's picture

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wendy davis's picture

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