Will President Trump find an alternative to a military strike? What can he do now? His reluctance to get involved in Middle Eastern squabbles is clear, but it is also clear that impunity breeds new evils.
Iran has acknowledged that it carried out the attack on Saudi oil fields. In his Friday sermon in the city of Mashhad, Imam Ahmad Alamolhoda, the spiritual ally and associate of the Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei, indicated that Tehran was behind the ominous attack.
In a speech posted on his website, the imam spoke at length about Iran's achievements. He spoke enthusiastically about Iran's expansion in Yemen, Lebanon, Gaza and Iraq. Then he clearly asked, "Do you know where Iran is? Is the South of Lebanon not Iran? Is Hezbollah not Iran? Wasn't there a Yemenite drone that was directed against Saudi Arabia? Isn't that Iran?”
Those who are in doubt should refer to this link before it is removed by the loyal Khameneist Alamolhoda.
The Iranian media are reluctant to admit that their regime has committed a new era crime. Bear in mind how Tehran's hated neighbor, Saddam Hussein, set fire to hundreds of oil facilities in Kuwait in 1991 and paid dearly for it. It seemed that others would get the message, but they did not.
We can assume that these days, the Iranian Ministry of Foreign Affairs is not trying to bring things to a critical level, but to cash in on the crushing results of a successful military operation. The Ayatollah regime has shown that it is capable of taking nonstandard actions that are painful for the whole world. In one fell swoop, the regime managed to temporarily suspend production of 5% of the world's oil. Iranian diplomats quietly and calmly say, “If you do not want our oil, then you won’t have Saudi oil.”
The regime will complain about America withdrawing from the nuclear agreement and the imposition of severe sanctions, which involve not only the United States, but also all major European and Russian companies (not the governments, but all large firms). There is a new report in the usually reliable Wall Street Journal about a possible new Iranian strike on Saudi Arabia. If it is true, oil prices will climb even higher, to Russia’s great satisfaction, but adding to the financial constraint in Europe.
Tehran has shown that it can strike unexpectedly and painfully. It has also shown that it’s ready to take risks, as its threats were confirmed by serious deeds. The world has become accustomed to idle Iranian threats against Israel since the Tehran regime has never been able to seriously respond to the hundreds of Israeli operations aimed at dismantling Iran’s infrastructure in Syria and Iraq. However, Iran turned out to be capable acting against the Saudis.
Thus, Iranian diplomats can speak from a position of strength. They are ready to take risks that Europeans never dreamed of. Their regime is bursting at the seams and the economic situation is catastrophic. Young people are far removed from the Khamenei frenzy, but no one can pinpoint the date when this entire empire of Islamism will collapse. For the time being, the IRGC and squads within the country hold power and the Ayatollahs are leading the country into turmoil and metastasis.* It is also bad for others, especially for the hated Saudis.
Why did the imam close to Khamenei make such a frank statement? The Iranian Foreign Ministry denies the involvement of the regime in the destruction of oil fields and a plant in Saudi Arabia. It cannot be ruled out that this is evidence of a tactical difference between those who pretend to be moderate and those who are openly hostile. One should not look for propaganda subtleties here, but there is no doubt that Alamolhoda told his congregation that Iran had committed this crime and posted it on the internet for a reason.
It is obvious that the imam had information from Ayatollah Khamenei, the face of Iran. If Alamolhoda was not afraid to talk about it openly, it was because he was convinced that Khamenei would approve such a report. In addition, no one has made any claims, convictions or denials to contradict the imam.
Now here is a question for Donald Trump. Up until now, information about Iran’s act of aggression came from American intelligence agencies and from the Saudis. Now we see a rising wave of obscuring information in Iran. Sensing impunity, Iran has begun to brag about their deeds. This is significant as Ayatollah Khamenei is among those boasting. Will President Trump find an alternative to a military strike? What can he do now? His reluctance to get involved in Middle Eastern squabbles is clear, but it is also clear that impunity breeds new evils.
*Editor’s note: The IRGC are the Revolutionary Guard Corps, a branch of the Iranian Armed Forces.