Trump’s Holy War

In 1964, President Lyndon Johnson bombed North Vietnam for the first time. He warned them more was to come if they didn’t behave in South Vietnam with their aid to the Viet Cong. Instead of intimidating North Vietnam. It started a war that dragged on for over ten years. The U.S. lost 57,000 lives and the war.

Events have a way of changing history. In 1861, the bombardment of Fort Sumter, S.C. brought the remaining reluctant southern states into the Confederacy leading to Civil War. In 1941, the Japanese bombing of Pearl Harbor turned the American people from isolationists to total war.

Trump showed his mental and emotional illness when he murdered Iran’s top military leader, General Qassem Soleimani. The US is not at war with Iran or Iraq. Nor is Iraq a war zone like Syria. He did it anyway without consulting allies or Congress.

He made matters infinitely worse by tweeting an ultimatum to Iran that he would destroy 52 targets in Iran if Iran retaliated for his attack.

The ultimatum threatened cultural targets as well. This goes beyond a military action to a direct attack on the Iranian people. Worse yet, if the cultural targets are of a religious nature, all of Islam (Shiites and Sunni Muslims) would be united against the U.S. It would ignite a true Jihad or Holy War against the U.S. In a Jihad, killing Americans in any way would make the killers martyrs.

Trump’s threat of hitting 52 targets is inflexible. All or nothing? How much proof or degree of attack would be needed to inspire such a strike? What does he do next when the entire world condemns him? What if the Straight of Hormuz is made too dangerous to navigate? What if this triggers a worldwide recession?

Iran does not have nuclear weapons and has a weaker military than the U.S. So Trump thinks he can do what Lyndon Johson tried to do in 1964.

He ignored or was ignorant that Iran, Russia and China just completed a naval exercise in the Indian Ocean. Iran has friends.

Newton’s third law in physics states “For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.” In human affairs, there may not be equal reactions. There are reactions that could be less or more. The smallest groups of irate people can do awesome damage.

In 1983, suicide bombers drove a truck full of explosives into a Marines barracks and killed 241 in Beirut, Lebanon.

In 1986, US President Ronald Reagan ordered an air raid that killed the Libyan leader Gaddafi adopted daughter and 36 other people. In 1988, Flight 103 was blown up over Lockerbie, Scotland killing 259 passengers and crew and 11 on the ground.

In 1995, a few mental cases set off a bomb in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma over government actions against a cult group. This killed 168.

In 2001, only 19 hijacked four airliners and crashed two into the two World Trade towers, one in the Pentagon and one was brought down by victims inside. 2,977 died from the events of Sept 11th.

The Middle East is a bad neighborhood. There are numerous factions. Unrelated things can happen. Iran shot down a US drone accidentally or on purpose. Someone fired on tankers. Someone struck Saudi oil production. Iran may or may not have control over the many groups who have one thing in common: getting the U.S. out of the Middle East.

As of January 9, 2020, an additional 232 have been killed by a stampede of mourners and the accidental shooting down of an airliner. See More blood on Trump’s hands.

The forces for moderate regime change especially the majority who are under age 40 in Iran are going to have difficulty dealing with this assault on Iranian national pride.

The Iraqi Parliament has just asked the 5,200 U.S troops to leave Iraq. Trump has just said he won’t do it. What next?

By acting like a mad dog in tearing up the Nuclear agreement that our allies put together and his recent assassination, Trump has stirred up animosities that will kill thousands in the long run. If a war develops, millions may die. More nations may develop nuclear weapons to deter the U.S. or be more independent.