Odds and Ends 

In the War on Terror, Iran Is Kicking Our A**

With the largely subsided. Irans initial military response to the Jan. 3 targeted killing of Maj. Gen. Qassem Soleimani, a leading military strategist and commander of Irans elite Quds Force, was as limited and restrained as the targeted killing was bold and unexpected. On Jan. 8, Iranian forces fired 16 ballistic missiles at two American-run military bases in Iraq, resulting in no deaths and limited damage. Iran telegraphed the missile launch, suggesting to experts on that countrys foreign and defense policies that Tehran wished to de-escalate tensions with the United…

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Is U.S. Embassy Attack in Baghdad Part of an Iran Trap?

JERUSALEMIf Irans grand plan in the Middle East is to push the Americans out and squeeze Israel into a corner, the first time that Israel has attacked Iranian-backed groups there. Two days after Kochavis speech, 32 targeting Kataib Hezbollah. The two incidents now bring into view both Israeli and American red lines trying to contain Irans role in the region. strong and sovereign Iraq, according to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. And the U.S. military is in Iraq at the more than 1,000 airstrikes on as many as 250 Iranian…

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Fox News reporter posts years-old photo of Iranian graffiti thanking Trump

A Fox News producer tweeted out a photo of Arabic graffiti that supposedly shows Iranian support for President Donald Trump. After a military strike killed Iranian Quds Force commander Qassem Soleimani on Thursday, Iranian protesters took to the streets to mourn Soleimani. However, Yonat Friling, from Fox News, portrayed support for Trumps decision in Iran with a tweet on Friday. From Tehran this morning graffiti says Thank you Trump. (Source protected), @Foxyonat tweeted. Her tweet has since been deleted. @Foxyonat The image; however, has a few suspicious qualities. First, this…

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Team Trump Goes Back To Sanctions Playbook

The Trump administration announced fresh sanctions on Iran Friday following Tehrans missile strikes on an Iraqi military base housing American troops. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said in a press conference Friday that the U.S. had sanctioned eight Iranian officials as well as companies in the countrys steel, metals, and mining sectors. Several of those companies have been blacklisted, meaning American individuals and entities are barred from doing any business with them. The Iranian officials sanctioned include the Deputy Chief of Staff of the Iranian…

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Headlines 

‘Heartbreaking’: Canadians mourn Iran plane crash victims

Grief and some scuffles between supporters and opponents of regime as hundreds gather by candlelight at Toronto vigils On 6 January, Alvand Sadeghi was due to fly from Tehran back to Toronto. But a rapidly deteriorating political situation in the region left the web designer with a cancelled flight. Eager to return, the 29-year-old booked a new flight two days later, on Ukrainian International Airlines flight PS752. He was travelling with his wife, sister and eight-year-old niece. Shortly after takeoff, however, the statement by Read more: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/jan/10/heartbreaking-canadians-mourn-iran-plane-crash-victims

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Why Would Russia, Chinaand IranPlan Joint Naval Exercises?

KARACHI, PakistanThe waters around the Arabian Peninsula have calmed for the moment, but preparations for combat continue, with joint exercises and security conferences showing just how profoundly the regions strategic balances are shifting. As confidence declines in U.S. President Donald J. Trumps ability to navigate the difficult moral and military choices in the region, new players are entering the picture in and around the Persian Gulf. An Israeli delegation attended a U.S.-backed maritime-security conference that began Sunday in Manama with delegations from Saudi Arabia and Bahrain as a vast international…

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Twitter says it will restrict users from retweeting world leaders who break its rules

Twitter said it will restrict how users can interact with tweets from world leaders who break its rules. The social media giant said it will not allow users to like, reply, share or retweet the offending tweets, but instead will let users quote-tweet to allow ordinary users to express their opinions. The company said the move will help its users stay informed about global affairs, but while balancing the need to keep the site’s rules in check. Twitter asserts that it won’t ban Trump because he’s a world leader Read…

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Headlines 

Saudi Arabia wont attack Iran. But it may pay someone else to | Nesrine Malik

The US is being fooled that it needs to rescue its ally in the Middle East, says the Guardian columnist Nesrine Malik There is a longstanding joke told in the Middle East about Saudi Arabias reluctance to fight its own wars. Saudi Arabia will fight until the last Pakistani, the punchline goes, in reference to the fact that Pakistani troops have long supported Saudis military endeavours. The punchline has expanded lately to include the child soldiers, whose deaths are handsomely compensated for with cash paid to their families back home.…

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Headlines 

Netanyahu accuses Iran of hiding evidence of nuclear facility

Israels opposition says prime ministers claims are an election campaign stunt Benjamin Netanyahu has unveiled what he claims was a previously undisclosed Iranian nuclear weapons facility and accused Tehran of destroying the site to hide the evidence. This is what I have to say to the tyrants of Tehran, Netanyahu said. Israel knows what youre doing, Israel knows when youre doing it, and Israel knows where youre doing it. Without providing details, he accused Iran of using the facility near the city of Abadeh to conductexperiments to develop nuclear weapons.…

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Headlines 

Why Trumps ‘maximum pressure’ foreign policy yields minimum results

The president is heading into 2020 with no major successes and looming crises so many expect him to attempt to reverse the trend with dramatic deals Donald Trump is heading into the 2020 elections with no clear-cut foreign policy successes, some dramatic failures and a string of looming crises around the world that could undermine his bid for re-election. For that reason, many expect the president to try to reverse the trend with dramatic interventions around the globe with uncertain outcomes which will make the next 16 months even more…

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Iran Says Its Revolutionary Guard Shot Down a U.S. Drone

Irans Revolutionary Guard has claimed it shot down a U.S. drone, according to the countrys state-run IRNA news agency. The news comes amid mounting Associated Press: There was no drone over Iranian territory. White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said Trump had been briefed on the reports of a missile strike in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, according to the Associated Press. We are closely monitoring the situation and continuing to consult with our partners and allies, she was quoted as saying. The incident comes as tensions are already…

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Headlines 

US to send 1,000 more troops to Middle East, citing ‘hostile behavior’ by Iran

Tensions between countries on the rise after Washington blamed Tehran for attacks on oil tankers The US is sending an additional 1,000 troops to the Middle East in response to hostile behavior by Iranian forces and their proxy groups, Patrick Shanahan, the acting defence secretary, announced on Monday. The move further heightens tensions between the two nations. Last week Washington blamed Iran for Shanahan said in a statement. The recent Iranian attacks validate the reliable, credible intelligence we have received on hostile behavior by Iranian forces and their proxy groups…

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Team Obama Tells Iran: Dont Escalate, Dont Take Trumps Bait

As the Trump administration concerned American intelligence and national-security officials, sent ships and B-52 bombers to the region in a show of force. That move fed fears of military conflict between the two powers. Officials in the intelligence community concluded that those aggressive steps came in response to the Trump administrations decision to punish any country that violates U.S. sanctions by buying Iranian oil and to as History Today notes, and nobody has ever been convicted over it. The Logan Act bars people outside the U.S. government from engaging in…

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U.S. Intel to Congress: No Evidence al Qaeda Is Helping Iran

The American intelligence community has no evidence that al Qaeda has cooperated with the Iranian government in its recent aggressive moves in the Persian Gulf region, a senior U.S. government official told members of Congress on Tuesday. That finding, which was relayed to The Daily Beast by three sources familiar with the matter, could undercut a potential legal case for going to war with Iran if tensions between Washington and Tehran keep escalating. The assessment was delivered in a classified briefing with dozens of House members on Capitol Hill. According…

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