late wrote:When Trump broke the JCPOA, he also levied severe economic sanctions against Iran. Basically economic war.
All the things Iran has been doing, shooting down a drone, messing with shipping, has been in response to those sanctions. They are in a fight to survive.
So when Trump said he wasn't going to respond, just lay on some new sanctions, he was escalating the conflict.
There are no more sanctions he can impose. It's all empty talk for domestic consumption. There are only two ways the US could increase the sanctions:
1) Stop waiving exceptions to the sanctions regime and enforce extra-territorial secondary sanctions, for example by forcing Russia, China, India, etc., to stop trading with Iran. There is not a snow-ball's chance he hell these countries would comply.
2) Adopt a UN resolution to force all countries to impose sanctions on Iran. There is not a snow-ball's chance in hell that all security council members will agree to that.
Trump is a simple mind. He believes he just has to intimidate opponents with the wrath of the almighty US of A, and all resistance will crumble. He believes his adversaries will come crawling licking his feet to get some crumbs from his dinner table. No, that is not how geopolitics works.
Other than intimidation, he has no plan. If it doesn't work he has to beat a hasty retreat as in Syria, as in NK, as in China ... Iran knows that and can patiently wait for the US to be expelled from Iraq and Syria.
So while the Cult is high fiving, Iran is planning their next moves.
No, it's not over, it's hardly begun.
I think it is over, Trump may throw another tantrum and fire some missiles into the desert as a face saving measure before retreating.
Trump had lost before he even fired the initial salvo.
The rational way out of this is to drop the sanctions in return for starting negotiations.
Trump can't do that. The raw meat crowd doesn't want him acting sane.
So war it is.
The thing can escalate out of control by accident, even if nobody wants war. That is always the greatest danger. But Trump doesn't have the stamina for a full-scale war or for a global crisis that would hit the US economy during the election campaign.
The Iranians, the Chinese, the North Koreans, etc., they all know they can needle the US as much as they want, Trump will have to play it down because he can no longer afford to respond. He has used up his ammunition by an aggressive opening.