At the expense of the safety of the people of the United States and the world at large, President Donald Trump has a very high opinion of himself. In that light, this Friday while speaking to reporters in the Oval Office Trump proudly proclaimed that he could wipe Iran almost if not entirely off the face of the earth via orders that he could give while sitting right there in front of the reporters — which, he noted, would give the media a “nice, big story to report.” In other words, the military capabilities of the United States remain in the hands of a self-obsessed man who thinks we’re supposed to be reassured — or something — that he’s not ordering massive military strikes when he feels like it and thinks in terms of television ratings for the whole time.
‘The easiest thing I could do — in fact I could do it while you were here — would be to say, ‘Go ahead, fellas, go do it.’ And that would be a very bad day for Iran. That’s the easiest thing I could do, it’s so easy. And for all of those that say, ‘Oh, they should do it, it shows weakness [to not do it]’ actually, in my opinion, it shows strength… I’m not looking to do that if I can. I think I’ve changed a lot of minds… let’s see what happens. But it will take place in one minute. I could do it right here in front of you, and that would be it. And then you would have a nice, big story to report.’
Trump on military strikes against Iran: “It’s all set to go. But I’m not looking to do that … I could do it right here, in front of you. And that will be it. And then you’ll have a nice big story to report. I think it shows far more strength to do it the way we’re doing it.” pic.twitter.com/Xf0ZpHqfSH
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) September 20, 2019
Why does Trump think that Iranians should take him as a credible even potential negotiating partner if his idea of an appropriate stance towards the country is “well, I could kill large swaths of your people if I felt like it, but I’m not so do what I say”? To be clear — Trump himself is the one who first violated the Iran nuclear deal that the country signed with the U.S. and other countries towards the tail end of Barack Obama’s time in office. He’s the one who dumped it, re-imposing sanctions — and now he’s feeling the consequences, considering Iran have also now decided to stop adhering to the deal that the U.S. has abandoned.
His latest macho threat towards Iran comes after the country was alleged to be behind an attack on oil facilities in Saudi Arabia that temporarily crippled a significant portion of the world’s oil supply. At first, the Iran-backed Houthi rebels in Yemen claimed responsibility for the attack, but Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and others have insisted that Iranian authorities themselves are the real culprit and may have directed the Houthis to lie and take responsibility.
There have been significant other flashpoints of tension between Iran and the West too.
For instance, the country shot down a U.S. drone that they claimed entered their airspace, although the Trump administration of course claimed otherwise. The Trump administration has deployed additional military assets to the region as tensions have spiked, and the question of what might come next remains open-ended.
Featured Image via screenshot