To the editor:

“The government of —— is cruelly suppressing its people and is a threat to our interests in the region. Therefore we have sent a naval warship, ——, to the area to put its government on notice that we will not be trifled with. We seek no confrontation, but will respond to any provocation if deemed necessary.”

If you put the words “Iran” and “aircraft carrier Abraham Lincoln” in the sentence, you would be correct. You would also be correct if you inserted these three tandems: “Spain/Cuba — battleship Maine”; “Vietnam /Gulf of Tonkin — U.S.Navy spy ships”; “Iraq — WMD.” What do the last three have in common and hopefully not the first? They were wars started for false reasons, initiated under dubious circumstances, that ended with terrible consequences. ...

Today, Trump, having rid himself of the experience and advice of three respected, multi-star generals, has sub-contracted control of the military to John “Bomber” Bolton, who was awarded the PGA Badge (Pretty Good Attendance) during the Vietnam War for his service as second clarinetist in the Maryland National Guard Band. Despite the fact that the Iran Nuclear Deal gave us with Iran exactly what we wanted from North Korea, Bolton’s “solution” to the “problem” of Iran is: “If you don’t want Iran to have the bomb, bomb Iran.” He and Trump are doing a Kabuki good cop, bad cop routine, Bolton sending an aircraft carrier and B52s to the area, while Trump feigns a reasonable stance: “If they’ll only just call me, we can talk.”

Bolton and Pompeo, with the aid of Saudi Arabia and Israel, are attempting to build a “fake news” case for bombing, the latest the claim by the trustworthy Saudis that Iran sabotaged its ships, something the Iranians would have to be really stupid to do, and aircraft carrier/drone-taunting Iran a la the Maine and the Tonkin Gulf spy ships. So the situation with Iran is in the hands of Trump, deeply engaged financially with Saudi Arabia, interested also, for spite, in erasing President Obama’s name from the history books because Obama ridiculed him years ago at a function; and Bolton, who wants to wear big-boy pants; the Saudis, because the Iranians are Shite infidels and must be exterminated; and Israel, because it sees Iran as a threat to its existence.

Who has the courage and authority to stop history from disastrously repeating itself?

Jim McNiff