President Trump addressed the nation this morning, announcing that no American and no Iraqi lives were lost, and minimal damage was done from the missile attack launched at U.S. forces in Iraq yesterday. Our early warning systems “worked very well,” according to Trump.
The President talked about the bloody atrocities of Soleimani, the history and justification for his killing, and how Iran went on a terror spree, paid for by $150B provided by the Obama Administration under JCPOA. He noted that the missiles used to attack U.S. forces were also paid for with these funds provided by Obama and John Kerry. He also noted that Iran has killed 1500 of its own people during recent protests against its government.
However, Trump’s response was measured. The upshot is the following:
– The crippling sanctions will remain.
– UK, Germany France must break away from the JCPOA. It’s dead, we need a new deal.
– President Trump will ask NATO allies to become much more involved in the middle east process.
Note that Trump did NOT signal military retaliation for this attack. The “red line” is said to be American lives lost, none were.
Before the speech, Trump was heard to say “As long as I am President, Iran will never have a nuclear weapon.” Trump noted that the U.S. is energy independent.
It was rumored that there was a warning from Iran before the attacks occurred, however this was not confirmed by President Trump.
Iranian media claimed that 30 Americans were killed, apparently an attempt to satisfy the blood lust stirred up by inflammatory statements from Irani government officials over the death of Soleimani. Media commentators have speculated that targets were intentionally missed, to avoid war with the U.S. while trying to convey a strong response at home.
Author’s commentary: No one really wants a war. Yesterday’s attacks were anticipated as face saving measured by the Iranian regime, which satisfied the hawks in Iran but gave Trump the opportunity to de-escalate. Trump has taken that opportunity.
But Trump is correct that NATO allies must stop attempting to revive the JCPOA and move into a new phase of negotiations with Iran, one that would not allow them to get nuclear weapons every. The U.S. interests in the Middle East have greatly declined since we are now energy independent. The upshot is that Europe cannot enjoy the import of oil from the region at the expense of nuclear weapons in the hands of a radical, unstable regime.