War with Iran: What you need to know pt2

Six months ago I set out some very obvious basic facts that any six year old with access to Wikipedia could have worked out:

(Yeah, I know. Real genius level stuff.)

To this I would like to add one more thing:

  • Absolutely the worst possible circumstance to start a war with Iran would be one in which the US contrives to lose all support and cooperation from Iraq by, let’s say, launching an unauthorised attack within Iraq.

So, what is worse than war with Iran? War with Iran and (at least part of) Iraq at the same bloody time!

So what happens next? Here is my best guess.

  • Trump ties to cancel the impeachment trial citing imminent war as a pretext.
  • At least a few Republicans who had been willing to let him grift his way to November, or even to 2024, now decide that this is far too risky and that he has to go before he gets large numbers of American troops killed. (Is this enough to make Trump lose the trial? Probably not, but it would increase the likelihood of his removal from 0% to something more than 0%.)
  • Iran plays it cool. Pursues legal strategies in the UN and elsewhere. Plays for time. Finds its status in the world enhanced.
  • Russia steps up to broker a peace deal.
  • Everything goes back to “normal” except that Russia’s influence in the whole middle east is massively increased and America’s is diminished. Also, Iraq is even more unstable than ever with Iran having more influence than before.
  • People are unable to work out whether Putin’s planned and engineered the whole thing all along or whether he just took advantage of the opportunity when it arose.
  • The Trump base claims this was just another genius move in Trump’s “4D chess game” and votes for him anyway.

I’m inclined to think that this idiotic situation is not a result of Putin’s proactive planning. It is too reckless and stupid for that. I am very confident that Russia will play it this way though. It makes sense for Putin to try to play the role of “the adult in the room”. If it works out then Russia wins a lot of influence in the region. If it doesn’t then they are no worse off than if they don’t try it.

January 3, 2020. Politics, Sensible.

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