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Wednesday, 09 May 2018

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David it seems you and Diplomad are snacking from the same plate of chips!
https://www.thediplomad.com/2018/05/trump-rolls-on.html

Trump has been entirely too politically correct. Instead of just acting like he was brushing dandruff off Macron's suit, he should have knocked Mini out with a roundhouse to the jaw then started kissing Mrs. Macron and grabbing her tender bits. Reporters' and Democrats' heads would have exploded, and everyone in Brussels would have burst into sobs and lip quivers.

I think the EU leaders are more worried about their trade with the Iranians than any other issue. Any country that can afford to wage proxy war against Israel can afford to buy a lot of BMWs.

I totally agree - but why are you airbrushing out the fact that your glorious revolutionary Brexit commissars are in the same cold shower!

They all brown-nosed Iran along with the EU leadership, Jerries, and Frogs.

There are exceptions: Rees-Mogg is pro-Trump's stance, and Gove is pro-Israeli, but both are living up to the politician's high standards of courage and principles - i.e. keeping totally effing schtum on the subject! So much so you have to go abroad to find out what their views even are on the subject ...

https://www.albawaba.com/news/what-do-irans-rouhani-brexit-and-jacob-rees-mogg-have-common-1095008

So if the new glorious Brexit revolutionaries oust May and get the top job, the first great factional split and divisive endless row between themselves will be whether to support Iran (BoJo, Davis) or Trump (Rees-Mogg, Gove).

Bloody marvellous, well done. Might as well hand over to Jezza right now.

SoD

Allister Heath explains how it was Blighty and Brussels that got punched in the nose ...

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2018/05/09/iran-deal-monument-western-myopia-groupthink-good-riddance/

BoJo thinks he's being Brexit-deal canny sucking up to the Euros by supporting the Iran deal and spiting Trump. As Heath says, he'll get nothing from the Euros in return, and, he might land Blighty a shed load of US sanctions.

And if Rees-Mogg goes all out to cuddle Trump and support the ripping up of the Iran deal he'll make himself unelectable with the Brit hoi-poloi.

So a lose-lose for the Tories under the Brexiteers.

Which means a win-win for Jezza on account of his close supporters being Jew / Israel haters, his soft left faction being pro-EU, and both being Trump haters - Jezza now has at least one uniting issue to rally the Labour party!

Spectacular, epic fail by the Brexiteer leadership of the Tory party.

SoD

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-global-markets/oil-soars-dollar-roars-as-trump-dumps-iran-nuclear-deal-idUSKBN1IA064

The Eurries can of course console themselves so long as they confine their transactions to €. It'll only be "problematic" [Read the Boeing/Iran airframes Deal] should any Iranian transaction necessitate $.

The Eurries [Jerries!] can of course carry on to spite Trump with, that one caveat! So long as there's no transaction Greenback-Dependent, Mutti and Macron may carry on.

Of course NATO source funding/resourcing may become a problem but as is said, "The Devil is in the details."

All Y'all noticed my (relative) absence and worried?

Need not've, I'm healthy. It's just that consultancy has its burdens. (No not Trump - a certain Senator.)

Via NightWatch for the night of 08 May:

Iran

"Iran will stay in the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA). On 8 May, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said Iran will stay in the nuclear deal with other signatories. He stressed that that Iran always complies with its commitments."

"Rouhani made the remarks shortly after the US President announced his decision to withdraw from the deal."

"Comment: The other main signatories to the JCPOA have declared that they will remain in the arrangement. Their position provides economic and political incentives for Iran to remain in it at least until the benefits of adherence can be determined."

Israel

"Expecting an Iranian attack and/or rehearsing civil defense. Warning that an Iranian attack might be imminent, the Israeli government called up reservists in air defense and intelligence specialties, Haaretz reported on 8 May."

"Haaretz also reported that the Israel Defense Forces have ordered civil defense shelters in the Golan Heights opened to citizens. The newspaper opined that Israeli leaders believe that Iran is preparing to retaliate for an Israeli airstrike on an Iranian air base in Syria."

"Comment: On 8 May, Israeli aircraft attacked targets in Syria within one hour of the US announcement that it withdrew from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action nuclear deal with Iran. Nine people, possibly Iranians, died in the attack. That explains the Israeli leadership’s latest concern about possible Iranian retaliation, in addition to the destruction Israeli air attacks have accomplished against Iranian targets in Syria during the past four months."

"Reserve callups are genuine war preparations because of the costs to the civil economy of putting civilian specialists in uniform. The Haaretz article described a limited call-up that signifies the threat is from the air."

"The localized civil defense measures indicate that Israeli intelligence expects Iranian targets would be on the Golan Heights."

"Reserve recalls and civil defense measures reinforce the message that the threat is genuine and requires Israel to pay serious costs to increase readiness."

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-iran-nuclear/europeans-work-to-save-iran-deal-and-business-after-trump-pulls-out-idUSKBN1I90D6

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-israel-golan-rockets/syrian-state-media-says-dozens-of-israeli-rockets-fired-into-syria-idUSKBN1IA3GF

*Note - The analysis contributors to NightWatch totally utilize open-source material. That's the wonder of it, US' IC announced/published "determinations" of the recent past having been demonstrably false.

https://www.amarillo.com/news/2017-02-02/thornberry-numerous-problems-centcom-probe-indicates-military-distorted-reports

(The greater number of questionable battlefield assessments being in the fairly immediate aftermath of the "They're the Jay-Vee Team" pronouncement.)

So the Israelis haven't wasted much time ...

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2018/05/10/israel-fires-barrage-missiles-syria-accusing-iranian-forces/

Notice that picture of the troop of three Israeli Merkava tanks lined up in the Golan. On the extreme left and right of each the turrets you'll see today's equivalent of the Spitfire, Longbow, Machine Gun, yet to become a household name for the unsuspecting public.

Not a great looker, but those angular little boxes are the Trophy ADS. They make those tanks invulnerable to RPG and ATGM attacks by swatting the incoming missiles out of the air with a "whiff of grapeshot". Not a single Merkava tank was lost in Operation Protective Edge when they charged the length and breadth of Gaza and hundreds of missiles were fired at them.

Interesting to see tank units in the Golan. Why would such an offensive weapon be there? You don't defend with tanks. And look at that lovely rolling open countryside, perfect tank country - goes all the way from the Golan to the Euphrates river, beyond which lies the new Kurdland and a link up with US forces.

Is Israel about to do Assad and his Iranian allies in Syria, big time on the ground?

SoD

It is about time the UK rethought it's foreign policy. President Trump is about to re-arrange things in the Far East and then proceed to sort out the Muslims. We should back him all the way and give the Franco-German alliance the Archer's salute.

I'm not sure how things will happen but Israel no longer has Obama standing in their way and Iran has lost their allies in DC.

Lawrence?

"You don't defend with tanks."

True enough I'd agree with you. However might you agree with me that, replacing the word "defend" with the word "deter" makes the tanks effective?

Via NightWatch for the night of 09 May:

Israel-Syria-Iran

"Israeli jets attacked a second day. On 10 May, the Israeli military said that Israel is carrying out an attack on Iranian targets in Syria. The results of the attack were not available during this Watch."

"The Israel Defense Force spokesperson for Arabic media said that "the Israeli air force is currently attacking Iranian targets in Syria. Any Syrian attempt to respond will be met with a tough Israeli reaction.""

"Israeli press reported a military statement that earlier on the 10th, Iranian Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) - Qods force personnel in Syria launched a barrage of 20 rockets at Israeli targets in the Golan Heights. The Israeli air attack was in retaliation for the rocket attack."

"The Israeli military said several of the rockets had been intercepted by Israel's missile defense system. No one was injured on the Israeli side."

"Comment: Israel rarely provides a real-time statement about an operation in progress. The spokesman said the rocket attack was the first time Iran fired directly at Israeli soldiers."

"In mid-April an Iranian armed drone penetrated Israeli airspace and was downed, in the first Iranian hostile act against Israeli territory. The drone was launched from Syria’s T4 airbase."

"Syria blamed Israel for the exchange. The Syrian state news agency, SANA, reported that Israel fired on targets near the town of Quneitra, located just east of the Golan Heights. Syrian air defenses had responded, it said. It later reported a “new wave” of attacks."

"The IRGC barrage also is the first time Iranian forces have retaliated for an Israeli attack."

"General war is not threatened now, but the confrontation is likely to escalate. Israel will attack Iranian facilities in Syria until the Iranians decide to leave."

"The Iranians will retaliate. They have abandoned the policy of restraint."

"The attack on 8 May updated. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said on 8 May that an Israeli attack on Iranian military facilities south of Damascus killed at least 15 people, including eight Iranians."

"An Israeli source said the 8 May attack was pre-emptive because Israel had information that IRGC forces in Syria were about to launch a missile or rocket attack against Israel."

"A commander in the regional alliance supporting the government of Syria told Reuters that Israel’s air force had struck an army base at Kisweh without causing casualties."

"Comment: Last December, Israeli aircraft attacked Iranian facilities at Kisweh, killing 12 Iranian soldiers. Kisweh is an Iranian base location south of Damascus."

"Iranian forces in Syria are in no condition to start a general war. They, the Syrians and Hizballah are bogged down in the Syrian civil war, which drags on. However, Iran and IRGC Qods Force commander, Major General Soleimani, are under pressure to respond to the repeated Israeli attacks that have killed IRGC soldiers. This week’s events show that Iran will retaliate."

"As for the Iranian rockets, they are in use or lose mode. If Iran does not use them against Israel, Israel will destroy them."

"Israeli intelligence was accurate when it predicted the Iranians would attack targets on the Golan Heights."

"Israel does not want and cannot afford the losses from a general war with Iran. The United States must lead Israel’s fight. The unusual public statements about military operations and the Iranian threat are aimed at influencing US public opinion."

JK - Lawrence

One can defend with tanks, as a key part of a combined arms team.

In 1973 there were a number of tank engagements in the Golan heights. First the Israelis in defense then the Syrians.

Of course they are a better offensive weapon.

Yes of course Hank tanks "can serve" defensively, my sole point (and I think perhaps Lawrence's too) however where any offensive moves come from the north onto the Golan those will be missiles for which tanks, I think Hank you'll agree too, cannot serve as defensive.

Pure speculation on my part Hank but, as there was an appearance of (presumably) *infantry* - probably Hizbollah - massing near the northern reaches, the missiles intended purpose was probably to "soften up" prior to ...

No matter it would appear at this point following the further Israeli actions which took out that, what the NightWatch comment of of 09 May avers "As for the Iranian rockets, they are in use or lose mode. If Iran does not use them against Israel, Israel will destroy them" appears to've, in fact, happened - those massing forces to the north seem now to be mightily reluctant to follow whatever their orders were.

Very especially, those of the Lebanese persuasion.

JK

Point taken.

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