Media Analysis

Top U.S. general resists Trump administration’s efforts to provoke war with Iran

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A brave U.S. army lieutenant general may be risking his career to resist Trump administration efforts to provoke war with Iran. Robert P. White, who commands American forces in Iraq, last week wrote what the New York Times called a “blunt memo,” in which he opposed a new plan by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and others to attack Iranian-allied militias inside Iraq. 

Most of the world is concentrating on fighting the coronavirus pandemic. But a small group of powerful men are taking advantage of the huge distraction to try and instigate Iran into a war, apparently hoping against all logic that a conflict will prompt regime change there that will neutralize Teheran’s influence in the Mideast. This warmongering group includes Pompeo; Robert O’Brien, the U.S. national security adviser; some top Israelis, including Benjamin Netanyahu; elements of the Israel lobby inside the U.S., and Saudi Arabia’s de facto leader, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. 

Lt. Gen. White’s memo, which was leaked to the Times, warned that the proposed campaign in Iraq against Iranian-allied militias would “require that thousands more American troops be sent to Iraq and divert resources from what has been the primary American military mission there: training Iraqi troops to combat the Islamic state.”

The Pompeo/Netanyahu/Saudi target is the Kataib Hezbollah militia, which has attacked U.S. forces in Iraq, including after the Trump administration assassinated the senior Iranian general, Qassim Soleimani, in January. Pompeo et al dismiss Kataib Hezbollah as Iran’s “proxies,” although genuine experts argue that the group emerged because of the reality in Iraq, including the U.S. occupation, now entering its 17th year, and can act on its own.

Today’s Times report did not go far enough. Pompeo and his allies are not merely targeting a militia in Iraq, (and unnecessarily jeopardizing the 5000 U.S. troops still stationed there). They have a much larger aim — to provoke Iran into a response, which they hope escalates into a broader war. Plenty of critics have noted that aim, but the paper couldn’t find any of them to interview. 

(At least the Times did get its hands on General White’s memo. The Washington Post is running a pathetic report that simply takes the Pompeo/Netanyahu approach at face value.)

Mike Pompeo and Donald Trump are notoriously vindictive. Let’s see what’s in the future for Lt. General Robert White.

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James Canning
James Canning

Bravo, Lt. Gen. Robert White. The unbridled arrogance and stupidity of Mike Pompeo poses a significant threat to the national security of the American people. Pompeo’s ignorance and stupidity is very much in the mold of George W. Bush. That Iraq would be strongly under Iranian influence if the US… Read more »

Misterioso
Misterioso

At last, an honest U.S. army general steps forth and publicly criticizes Donald Trump, the self-serving, utterly incompetent, corrupt, psuedo-President and his cohorts. Let’s hope he inspires others.

Misterioso
Misterioso

@echinococcus

Let’s be realistic. What you hope for is not going to happen. Instead, lets be thankful for General White’s courage in telling the truth!

JWalters
JWalters

I salute Lt. General Robert P. White for his courage and patriotism. He is not alone. Col. Lawrence Wilkerson, former chief of staff for Colin Powell asks “Is the US Ramping Up Its Military Presence in Syria and Planning to Attack Iran for Israel?” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qzPL6eGZktQ An in-depth look at Israel’s… Read more »

Daveyl123
Daveyl123

Now, boys and girls, can you say “Mandatory Retirement”? Israel wants the U.S. to attack Iran, and we will. I was hoping Trump could resist the efforts of the Knesset to embroil our troops in yet another conflict, but it looks like he’ll leave a legacy of servitude to that… Read more »