In a tangible threat to the lives of Americans and other people around the world, the United States continues moving towards possible military conflict with Iran. This weekend on CBS, House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) addressed that possibility, slamming the Trump administration for dramatically undercutting their supposed ambition to stay out of war with the actual antagonistic actions they’re taking alongside those claims.
‘Certainly the president has said that he doesn’t want war but nevertheless his people… seem to be taking actions to undercut that ambition to stay out of warfare. At a time when the president sent a message through the Japanese Prime Minister of an interest in going back to the table to negotiate, Bolton was announcing new sanctions in Iran. Is that an effort to scuttle the president’s effort to initiate a dialogue? It certainly seemed to have that effect. The whole idea that somehow through this pressure campaign we were going to force Iran to capitulate was… dangerously naive in the first place.’
.@RepAdamSchiff says even though @realDonaldTrump says he doesn’t want war, “his people, and I don’t know whether there is Pompeo or Bolton or both, seem to be taking actions to undercut that ambition to stay out of war.” pic.twitter.com/3NXZqO3N02
— Face The Nation (@FaceTheNation) June 16, 2019
That “pressure campaign” included President Donald Trump himself taking to Twitter to threaten to wipe Iran off the face of the earth — meaning that he probably didn’t need anyone’s help to scuttle the efforts towards a new deal with Iran that he’s made a show of being in favor of.
Indeed, even on top of the actions that the Trump team has taken against Iran outside the context of angling for new negotiations, the president himself has directly turned around and said “not so fast” to the idea of finding some common ground with the nation that allows for the persistent safety of involved interests. He railed on Twitter last Thursday:
‘While I very much appreciate P.M. Abe going to Iran to meet with Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, I personally feel that it is too soon to even think about making a deal. They are not ready, and neither are we!’
As Schiff also noted, the Trump administration are the ones who left relations between the United States and Iran hanging like a fraying rope in the first place. In recent months, they withdrew from the nuclear deal signed with the country under the Obama administration, which included Iran drawing down its nuclear production in exchange for sanctions relief. Thus, Schiff noted that they’re in no position to complain about Iran supposedly not complying with the terms of the agreement — they left it!
These developments are unfolding alongside supposed increased aggression from the Iranians exemplified by a recent attack on two large tanker ships in the globally relevant Strait of Hormuz. The government has released wildly low-quality video that they claim depicts a group from the Iranian army collecting an unexploded bomb from the side of one of the tankers, and Schiff acknowledges that despite questions, Iran does seem to be behind the incident. The United Kingdom has also joined the U.S. in calling out Iran as responsible, as have some of its regional opponents like Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.
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