Let's be honest here. No matter where that American drone was shot down, be it over international waters or in Iranian airspace, what was shot down was still a heck of an airplane worth a whopping 200 million U.S. dollars, according to Adam Kinzinger, a member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee. Based on historical precedents, America doesn't swallow a loss like that without taking action in return. It is unnecessary to point the finger at each other to lay blame on whose fault it is. The exact location where it was shot down will probably never be known.
Nevertheless, President Donald Trump is right that a potential loss of 150 Iranian lives from a botched bombing, based on the estimate from the Pentagon top brass, can never be "proportionate" to that 200 million U.S. dollars. As much as Trump loves money, he values life more.
The latest report from the New York Times is that Trump has authorized cyber attacks against Iran's missile system to cripple its command and control. That is a more measured response. Actually, it could go down in history as a Nobel Peace Prize moment, if indeed the war will be permanently averted from this point on.
A series of tweets written by U.S. President Donald Trump regarding a retaliatory attack on Iran are displayed on a computer screen in New York, U.S., June 21, 2019. /VCG Photo
Hurrah to President Trump for keeping America and the world great!
Looking back, it was not an easy decision, especially considering that Trump is wholly surrounded by a gang of warmongers. National Security Advisor John Bolton is known for advocating regime change in Iran for decades. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is another hawk with a basic instinct for war due to his many years of leadership at the Central Intelligence Agency and in launching covert wars all around the world.
Vice President Pence probably prays before arguing for the bombing, but he still argues for bombing nevertheless. And the outgoing Secretary of Defense Patrick Shanahan, who is a former Boeing executive, must be grinning to see that the Pentagon's death inventory will have to be replenished again with more gadgets from Boeing.
As peace-loving people, we cannot celebrate Trump's decision to avert a war enough, even though he still hasn't called off the trade war with us yet. Just imagine what would have happened if the Tomahawks were fired.
The purported American drone wreckage is displayed by the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) in Tehran, Iran, June 21, 2019. /VCG Photo
Here is what I would have guessed. A wave of Iranian missiles would be fired at all American assets in the Middle East. Probably targets in Israel would also be included. Some oil tankers in the Persian Gulf might be sunk. The Strait of Hormuz would be entirely closed. There would be a massive U.S.-led invasion into Iran with troops numbered in hundreds of thousands. Iran would strike back with urban guerrilla warfare in the entire Western world. This war would then go on for years, and oil prices would hover above 100 U.S. dollars per barrel for years.
It would be a horrendous scenario for the global economy and China's as well. Fortunately, we have not moved in that direction yet. Since Trump came to power, his "America First" policy and trade wars have caused havoc on the global economy. On the domestic front, he has achieved nothing other than nominating two judges to the Supreme Court and passing a deficit-boosting tax bill that really only benefited the rich.
But let's give him credit for at least keeping the peace. Reportedly, he was quoted as saying that he had resisted four wars pushed by John Bolton already. He has talked up "fire and fury." He has sold hundreds of billions of dollars of what he called "beautiful" weapons around the world. He has increased the U.S. defense budget by an arm and a leg. He has done many of those death-merchant things. But one thing he hasn't done is start a war.
Copy Editor/Kang Sijun
Author: Dr.John Gong is a member of the Academic Committee and an adjunct fellow at the Charhar Institute, and a professor at the University of International Business and Economics of China.
Source: CGTN, 2019-06-23