“The Gulf of Oman and May regional incidents were false flags to wrongfully blame Iran for what it had nothing to do with,” Lendman told FNA in an exclusive interview.
Stephen Lendman was born in 1934 in Boston, MA. In 1956, he received a BA from Harvard University. Two years of US Army service followed, then an MBA from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania in 1960. After working seven years as a marketing research analyst, he joined the Lendman Group family business in 1967. He remained there until retiring at year end 1999. Writing on major world and national issues began in summer 2005. In early 2007, radio hosting followed. Lendman now hosts the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network three times weekly. Lendman is a 2008 Project Censored winner and 2011 Mexican Journalists Club international journalism award recipient. Lendman lives in Chicago. His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."
What follows is FNA's interview with author and writer Stephen Lendman.
Q: What could be the scenario behind the accusations about Iran's involvement in attacking tankers in the Gulf of Oman?
A: I believe there’s sharp disagreement between Trump and his geopolitical officials Pompeo and Bolton.
I earlier quoted a Bolton critic saying he never met a country he didn’t want to bomb, including Iran, Venezuela, and North Korea.
In contrast, Pompeo I believe favors war by other means on Iran with sanctions and other tough policies, aiming to crush its economy and immiserate its people.
Tough US policies on Iran haven’t worked for the past 40 years and won’t likely ahead. My fear about the Gulf of Oman incident and others last month affecting Saudi, UAE and Norwegian tankers, attacking Saudi pumping stations, and a rocket falling harmlessly in Baghdad’s Green Zone ups the stakes for possible war.
I believe Trump wants toughness on Iran short of war he doesn’t want, prioritizing his reelection next year, fearing war on the country could make him a one-term president over quagmire conditions and dead US service members returning home in body bags.
US media are hostile to him for defeating Hillary Clinton and would likely feature this news.
Key also is the failure of Pompeo and other Trump officials to enlist world community support in condemning Iran for incidents with US and likely Israeli fingerprints all over them.
If this continues as I believe, one or more other incidents similar to the Gulf of Oman will likely follow, maybe something more serious.
False flags are a US tradition since the mid-19th century, 9/11 the mother of them all. The Gulf of Oman and May regional incidents were false flags to wrongfully blame Iran for what it had nothing to do with.
Cui bono is most important whenever an incident like Thursday attacks on vessels in the Gulf of Oman occurs.
Clearly, Iran had nothing to gain and plenty to lose from the incident. The Trump regime and its anti-Iran imperial partners benefit greatly by blaming the country for an incident no evidence suggests it had anything to do with.
Q: The al-Arabiya issued a tweet of the UAE foreign minister alleging that Iran was involved in attacking tankers. Next, Al-Arabiya removed this tweet. What can be the reasons for this?
A: I noticed that al-Arabiya removed the anti-Iran tweet it posted. Very unusual, and I don’t know why, other than maybe wanting it changed to portray the Gulf of Oman incident in a different way, still falsely blaming Iran for what happened.
Saudi energy minister Khalid al-Falih called for a “rapid and decisive response to the threat of energy supply, market stability and consumer confidence, which are posed by recent terrorist acts in both the Arabian Sea and the Arabian Gulf, against the major global energy supply chains” — what Iran had nothing to do with he failed to explain.
Q: In this new case, John Bolton was silent. Why?
A: In an article I’ll post on Sunday, I explained that a late May NYT report said guests with Trump at his Mar-a-Lago resort heard him “grousing” about Bolton, “complaining about the advice he was getting and wondering if Mr. Bolton was taking him down a path he did not want to go.”
Despite DJT’s hostility toward Iran, the Times said he broke with Bolton on how to deal with its ruling authorities, the same is true for North Korea, Bolton pushing for war on both countries.
Replacing raging hawk Bolton would step back from possible war on Iran. According to the Times “Trump is not fond of Mr. Bolton, according to a half-dozen (unnamed) advisers and associates, and he makes no secret of it in private.”
They “differ sharply over their approach to the world…“If it was up to John, we’d be in four (new) wars now,” an unnamed Trump regime official quoted him saying.
The Times cited another unnamed figure close to Trump, saying what’s going on between him and Bolton resembles how DJT soured on Rex Tillerson.
Bolton’s silence is likely over fear of being fired for supporting policies Trump opposes.
Q: What is your prediction about the new accusations against Iran?
A: I believe the Gulf of Oman false flag fell flat, so far failing to get world community support to wrongfully blame Iran for the incident
I also believe we’ll see more of these incidents ahead as long as Bolton is around, maybe something more serious, the same true for Pompeo unless Trump restrains him, not so far.
War is a possibility but not if Trump hardliners can’t sell it to the world community and US public.
They failed to do it so far, and that’s a positive sign way short of an all clear. The danger exists.