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Thread: 2020 US/Iranian Crisis

  1. #181
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    Quote Originally Posted by Double Edge View Post
    They were not Ballistic missiles as previously reported. This might explain the accuracy ?
    DE, the attack was indeed carried out using ballistic missiles.
    Ballistic missiles will fall into the broad category of SSM, or Surface-to-Surface Missile, that the Colonel mentioned.

    Also, contrary to what you have stated, ballistic missiles can be very accurate, even the somewhat older technology that Iran is using.
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  2. #182
    Turbanator Senior Contributor Double Edge's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TopHatter View Post
    DE, the attack was indeed carried out using ballistic missiles.
    Ballistic missiles will fall into the broad category of SSM, or Surface-to-Surface Missile, that the Colonel mentioned.

    Also, contrary to what you have stated, ballistic missiles can be very accurate, even the somewhat older technology that Iran is using.
    Let's see..

    Shahab-1 Range: 285-330 km CEP 450m

    Qiam-1 Range: 700-800 km CEP 500m (one of the news programs had a commentator who referred to this one)

    Fateh-110 Range: 200-300 km CEP 100m <---- like

    Zolfaghar (longer range Fateh variant so presumably similar CEP?) Range: 700 km

    On June 18, 2017, Iran reportedly launched six Zolfaghar missiles into Syria towards the Deir ez-Zor region.5 Reports citing the IRGC suggest that the missiles were fired from bases in the western provinces of Kermanshah and Kurdistan and flew over 600 km before reportedly hitting their targets. The missiles targeted Islamic State militants in response to an attack in Tehran on June 7. The strike was the longest-range missile launched by Iran in combat since its war with Iraq in the 1980s.

    IRGC officials said the strike not only sent a message to the Islamic State, but also that, “The Saudis and Americans are especially receivers of this message.”

    Some reports also point to a mix of missiles being used in the strike, including the Qiam, a Shahab-2 variant.7
    Latest. Was used against IS, has the range and accuracy.
    Last edited by Double Edge; 08 Jan 20, at 21:11.

  3. #183
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    Quote Originally Posted by m a x View Post
    Besides, no one doubts Iran's striking power any longer, regardless of whether they want to hit or deliberately miss targets
    I do. As does anyone who knows anything about rockets ... which apparently you don't.

  4. #184
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    yes, this was meant to be a warning shot for externals while making for internal propaganda.

    if the Iranians wanted to pull off another Abqaiq–Khurais attack they could, but then they're risking regime change.
    There is a cult of ignorance in the United States, and there has always been. The strain of anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that "My ignorance is just as good as your knowledge."- Isaac Asimov

  5. #185
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    May be a closer look is what some here need for better assessment. Hope nobody was hurt indeed

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    Last edited by m a x; 08 Jan 20, at 22:59.

  6. #186
    Turbanator Senior Contributor Double Edge's Avatar
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    Looking for reasons to get Soleimani that go beyond the DOD bulletin about imminence and i find one.

    Trump's strategic patience which then makes him over compensate

    Did seem over the top and now understand why

    Iran plays chess, the US plays backgammon | TWMES | Jan 09 2020

    Mr. Trump has in the past nine months exercised in military terms the kind of strategic patience that Iran adopted in the first 18 months after the United States withdrew in 2018 from the 2015 international agreement that curbed Iran’s nuclear program and imposed its economic sanctions.

    Mr. Trump refrained from responding militarily to numerous attacks, including last year’s Iranian downing of a US drone, attacks on tankers off the coast of the United Arab Emirates, and two key Saudi oil facilities.

    Those attacks were the ones that caught the most international attention, but were, according to US officials, only the tip of the iceberg.

    The officials said there had been some 90 attacks on US targets in Iraq since May 2019 carried out by Iranian-backed Iraqi militias, including Kataeb Hezbollah, whose leader, Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, was killed alongside Mr. Soleimani.

    The attacks were intended not only to force the US to escalate tensions by provoking a military response in the hope that it would lead to a return to the negotiating table but also an environment conducive to a withdrawal of US forces from Iraq at the behest of the Iraqi government and/or public pressure.

    “The nearly eight months in which the United States did not respond forcefully to a series of military provocations and attacks almost certainly contributed to the increasingly assertive and audacious actions by Iran and its proxies,” said Michael Eisenstadt, an expert on the military and strategy at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy (WINEP). pdf

    Mr. Trump’s apparent, so far disproven, belief that bluster and intimidation will force his adversaries coupled with television images of the besieged US embassy in Baghdad is likely what persuaded him to respond disproportionately to the killing of a US contractor by assassinating Mr. Soleimani.
    Have seen this pick a fight with the US to get them back to the table tactic before. Sadat

    An earlier WAPO article talks about a redline that got crossed with the death of the US contractor

    Pompeo warns Iran about trigger for U.S. military action as some in administration question aggressive policy | WAPO | Jun 19 2019

    any attack by Tehran or its proxies resulting in the death of even one American service member will generate a military counterattack
    Last edited by Double Edge; 09 Jan 20, at 01:17.

  7. #187
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    Pompeo tiptoes away from talk of 'imminent' attack planned by Iran's Soleimani
    WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Secretary of State Mike Pompeo appeared on Tuesday to further distance himself from his assertion last week that Iranian General Qassem Soleimani planned imminent attacks on U.S. targets before he was killed in a U.S. drone strike.

    The killing on Friday of the military commander, who headed Iran's elite Quds Force and built up Tehran's network of proxy armies in the region, prompted Iranian threats of retaliation and fueled expectations that a wider war could erupt.

    Speaking within hours of the drone strike, Pompeo told CNN on Friday that "last night was the time that we needed to strike to make sure that this imminent attack that he was working actively was disrupted."

    However, appearing before reporters in the State Department briefing room on Tuesday, and in six TV interviews on Sunday, he did not use the word "imminent" to justify the U.S. decision on to kill Soleimani.

    While Defense Secretary Mike Esper on Tuesday said it was "more fair" to say the attack Soleimani was planning was to be executed in days rather than weeks, Pompeo avoided specifying a timeline.

    Pompeo also held Soleimani responsible for a Dec. 27 rocket attack in Iraq in which a U.S. civilian contractor was killed and cited it as justifying the expectation of future attacks.

    "We know what happened ... in December, ultimately leading to the death of an American. So, if you are looking for imminence, you need look no further than the days that led up to the strike that was taken against Soleimani," Pompeo said on Tuesday.

    "And then you in addition to that have what we could clearly see were continuing efforts on behalf of this terrorist to build out a network of campaign activities that were going to lead, potentially, to the death of many more Americans," he added.

    Speaking to CNN on Friday, Pompeo was more emphatic, saying Soleimani's death "saved American lives."

    The State Department did not immediately respond to a request for comment on whether Pompeo was distancing himself from his prior statements that Soleimani planned "imminent" attacks on U.S. targets.

    U.S. President Donald Trump's administration has not made public any specific intelligence justifying his decision to kill Soleimani, though administration officials are scheduled to hold a classified briefing with member of Congress on Tuesday.

    Speaking ahead of the briefing, a congressional source said that intelligence committee members had not yet received any information to suggest that an attack was imminent.

    Within hours of the attack, some U.S. national security and congressional officials had raised questions about the use of the word "imminent" to justify the killing.

    Mark Warner, the Democrat who serves as vice chair of the Senate Intelligence Committee, told Reuters on Friday after a briefing: "I believe there was a threat, but the question of how imminent is still one I want answered."

    The word "imminent" implies attacks against American targets were about to happen and could help the Trump administration make a legal argument that killing Soleimani was an act of self-defense.
    ___________
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  8. #188
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    Trump administration briefing on Iran angers Republican senators, boosts effort to restrict presidential power

    WASHINGTON — A briefing by Trump administration officials about the U.S. military strike that killed Iran’s most famous general backfired on Wednesday, angering two Republican senators and driving them to support a Democratic effort to require congressional approval for any further military engagement.

    A visibly angry Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah, told reporters after the 75-minute briefing from administration officials that he was now supporting a war powers resolution introduced last Friday by Sen. Tim Kaine, D-Va.

    “I walked into that briefing undecided,” Lee said in the basement of the Capitol, near the high-security briefing room used to discuss classified information. “I walked out decided.”

    “That briefing is what brought me onboard,” Lee said. He described the Trump administration officials — including Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Secretary of Defense Mark Esper — as treating the assembled lawmakers like “little boys and girls” by asking them not to support the Kaine proposal, which would require a debate over the president’s order on Jan. 3 to kill Iranian general Qassem Soleimani.

    “To come in and tell us that we can’t debate and discuss the appropriateness of military intervention against Iran, it’s un-American,” Lee said. “It’s wrong. … That was insulting.”

    Citing the classified nature of the briefing, Lee declined to name which Trump officials in particular said what. But he said he wanted to tell the president about how unsatisfactory the meeting was. “This administration was ill-served by this briefing today,” Lee said.

    He called it “probably the worst briefing I’ve seen, at least on a military issue, in the nine years I've served in the United States Senate.”

    Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., a long-time advocate of greater congressional control over presidential powers in the area of foreign policy, stood next to Lee and said that he too supports the Kaine proposal.

    Only 51 votes are needed to pass the Kaine war powers resolution, because under Senate rules such a proposal falls into the category of what is known as a “privileged resolution.” Most Republican senators besides Lee and Paul have traditionally opposed efforts to restrict presidential war powers in the past, but the defection of these two lawmakers on this matter gives Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., little margin to lose other Republican votes. Most if not all Democratic senators are expected to support it.

    Meanwhile, in the House, Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., announced Wednesday afternoon that the House will hold a vote Thursday on its own war powers resolution.

    “Members of Congress have serious, urgent concerns about the Administration’s decision to engage in hostilities against Iran and about its lack of strategy moving forward,” Pelosi said in a statement. “Our concerns were not addressed by the President’s insufficient War Powers Act notification and by the Administration’s briefing today.”

    The House resolution would be designed, Pelosi said, “to limit the President’s military actions regarding Iran.”

    The House resolution will almost certainly pass, given the Democrats’ significant majority in the lower chamber.

    Trump’s comments in a morning address to the nation lowered tensions with Iran after the Iranian government attacked U.S. military bases in Iraq on Tuesday afternoon with more than a dozen ballistic missiles. But Trump’s speech did not reduce the resolve of those in Congress who want to reassert the role of the legislative branch in foreign conflicts.

    Article 1, Section 8 of the Constitution gives Congress the power to declare war, and Kaine in particular — along with Republicans like Paul and Lee — has long been frustrated by the unwillingness of President Obama, a Democrat, and now by Trump, a Republican, to seek congressional approval before initiating military conflict.

    After an earlier House briefing by Trump officials, many Democrats said that the State and Defense officials had provided no evidence of an imminent threat to American personnel or interests that would have justified the killing of Soleimani without seeking congressional approval.
    _____________

    Trump Administration officials treated assembled lawmakers like "little boys and girls"....Probably just sheer habit, they forgot they weren't dealing with Trump.

    Wish they also cared this much about demanding witnesses at the impeachment Senate trial and that their fellow oath takers treated their oaths seriously.
    TwentyFiveFortyFive

  9. #189
    Turbanator Senior Contributor Double Edge's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TopHatter View Post
    The word "imminent" implies attacks against American targets were about to happen and could help the Trump administration make a legal argument that killing Soleimani was an act of self-defense.
    With a pattern of 90 attacks on US targets would it be reasonable to assume those attacks would suddenly stop ?

    Nobody heard about those attacks because no Americans were killed but the fact is these challenges went unanswered leading to an emboldening of the proxies. The embassy siege would have made the point clear that something needed to be done and fast.

    Had the contractor not been killed its debatable if there would have been any US action forthcoming.

    So a disproportionate reaction occurred to address this lack of response over the past year.

    They got lucky, the head of the KH was with Solemaini as well
    Last edited by Double Edge; 09 Jan 20, at 11:43.

  10. #190
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    Quote Originally Posted by Double Edge View Post
    With a pattern of 90 attacks on US targets would it be reasonable to assume those attacks would suddenly stop ?
    The point is that to legally be able to claim you acted in self defence (which would make it legal) there must be "imminent danger" to US personnel or assets and no other way out of averting this attack on you/your people or stuff.

    So far the only 'justification' they have offered is "he was a bad guy" which while it is absolutely true does not make his assassination at this time and place legal. There are millions of "bad guys"; I mean any list would be substantial just in world terms let alone those who people might think are "bad" in their personal lives - that does not mean a private citizen can legally kill anyone anytime who they happen is a "bad person"; the 'bad person' has to immediately endangering you for you claim self defence and the same is true for countries.

  11. #191
    Turbanator Senior Contributor Double Edge's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by snapper View Post
    The point is that to legally be able to claim you acted in self defence (which would make it legal) there must be "imminent danger" to US personnel or assets and no other way out of averting this attack on you/your people or stuff.
    Embassy siege ?

    Iraqi forces just stood aside and did nothing allowing the protesters to get into the compound.

    Forget imminent. That was as immediate, live and direct as you can get.

    Should they have waited until the staff were taken hostages or killed

    How many more attacks should the US sustain in Iraq to qualify to act in self-defence ?

    So far the only 'justification' they have offered is "he was a bad guy" which while it is absolutely true does not make his assassination at this time and place legal. There are millions of "bad guys"; I mean any list would be substantial just in world terms let alone those who people might think are "bad" in their personal lives - that does not mean a private citizen can legally kill anyone anytime who they happen is a "bad person"; the 'bad person' has to immediately endangering you for you claim self defence and the same is true for countries.
    Deterrence was ebbing. Iran was making moves in the region. Mining oil tankers, attacking the Saudi oil field. No US response.

    That was restraint. I did not know Trump was into 'strategic patience' o_O

    Was listening to an interview on Ch4 yesterday. The state depts spokesperson refuted the word 'assasination' and referred to Solemaini as UNSC designated terrorist in addition to US designated too. He was living on borrowed time.

    Now there might be more info but they will say its classified so as to protect sources etc.

    I'm not seeing anything wrong here.

    What people are reacting to is the perception it was disproportionate. Well, US had some catching up to do.

    The other thing is this was an action carried out far away from the US. Had continental US been threatened i doubt there would be questioning the nature of pre-emptive.

    USG does not have this luxury. They have to act to protect interests wherever they may be.
    Last edited by Double Edge; 09 Jan 20, at 15:36.

  12. #192
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    Quote Originally Posted by m a x View Post
    May be a closer look is what some here need for better assessment.
    What I see from your photos is 4 hits spread over an area out of a 17 rocket strike and no pattern of a concentrated salvo. Try again.

    Quote Originally Posted by m a x View Post
    Hope nobody was hurt indeed
    So you just took athe time to find the photos but didn't actually took the time to read the reports on the attack

  13. #193
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    This key part

    Only 51 votes are needed to pass the Kaine war powers resolution, because under Senate rules such a proposal falls into the category of what is known as a “privileged resolution.” Most Republican senators besides Lee and Paul have traditionally opposed efforts to restrict presidential war powers in the past, but the defection of these two lawmakers on this matter gives Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., little margin to lose other Republican votes. Most if not all Democratic senators are expected to support it.
    Nothing is going to happen. This makes this fiasco another legal vs not illegal nothing debate. Until the Senate acts, this is NOT ILLEGAL.

  14. #194
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    Quote Originally Posted by Double Edge View Post
    Embassy siege ?

    Iraqi forces just stood aside and did nothing allowing the protesters to get into the compound.

    Forget imminent. That was as immediate, live and direct as you can get.

    Should they have waited until the staff were taken hostages or killed

    How many more attacks should the US sustain in Iraq to qualify to act in self-defence ?

    Soleimani was not at the 'Embassy siege' and nobody was killed. If you wish to make the case that his appearance on the scene put the safety of Embassy staff in 'imminent danger' set out the facts - what was he planning on doing? The trouble is they have not made such a case just said he was a "bad guy who done of lots of bad stuff." Sure he was and nobody is denying that but they have not made a case for why they had to take him right then and there because he posed he serious, credible and imminent threat. They have not even tried to. Why not?

    I read that the Brits considered killing him years ago for stirring up trouble in Basra when it was occupied by British forces. They declined precisely for this legal reason.

  15. #195
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    Quote Originally Posted by snapper View Post
    They have not even tried to. Why not?
    Because they have the Senate votes to NOT OVERRIDE Presidential Priviledge.

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