Wednesday, August 10, 2022

Blowback Isn't Always Immediate


Amidst Trump's Mar-a-Lago search warrant drama and the recent serving of several PA legislators over the false electors' scheme, the story of an assassination plot against John Bolton as a late retaliation over the slaying of General Suleimani surfaces for me as an example of something that US foreign/military policy sometimes fails at: theory of mind. The idea that our allies and enemies alike have the agency and will to respond in proportion and according to their own schedule is something that the "deciders" sometimes miss--almost as if they believe they are playing a game where the "other side" consists of NPC's.

That there would be blowback of some kind should have been obvious. That former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is also a possible target of Iran's Revolutionary Guard would not shock me. And naturally, none of this helps the attempt to renew the JCPOA that the Trump Administration fecklessly scuttled. 

The decision to escalate tensions with Iran was a Trump Administration fuckup we will be dealing with for some time. It wasn't necessary--it was ideological, and yes, Bolton and Pompeo were obvious anti-Iran antagonists and I nonetheless do not endorse their mortal peril because of the decision that ultimately came down to a green and under-prepared CinC who may have thought the exercise was about dick-measuring and clout.

It is simply as natural as night following the day--actions do have consequences. It's not that the IRG's assassination plot is acceptable--no! But it isn't unexpected when you appreciate the other side has a side.  

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