Russian TV on the Gulf of Oman incident: a Classic provocation

The US has its finger on the trigger, looking for an excuse.


Thomas Römer in Anti-Spiegel

(Translator note:  I began my study of Russian 12 years ago, and though I regularly watch Vesti, I confess that my Russian is simply not good enough to translate direct from hearing. German, however, is a different story: I passed the Graduate Exam in German 54 years ago. So, for me to bring this to FRN readers at all, I resort, thankfully, to Thomas Römer’s German rendering)

The Russian television about the incident in the Gulf of Oman
In the Russian broadcast “News of the Week” Russian television has dealt in detail with the incident in the Gulf of Oman. Unsurprisingly, it is clear to Russian television that the USA has carried out a false flag operation there. In contrast to the German media, the contributions were very worthwhile, so I translated them.
First came the introduction from the studio and then the report of the local correspondent.
Start of translation:

On June 13, two oil tankers, one from Norway and the other from Japan, were hit by explosions in the Gulf of Oman, in the waters between Iran and Oman.

The Americans immediately accused Iran of a torpedo attack. Iran immediately stated that this was a provocation and rejected all allegations. The Americans have stepped up the degree of horror.

On the 14th, Trump directly blamed Iran, presenting a fuzzy video as proof that unknown persons on an unknown boat in the dark are doing something above the waterline of an unknown ship. When the pictures were taken is not known. Maybe 10 years ago. And it’s not clear who filmed it and with what gear. Maybe it’s even stock footage. The US Central Command claims that in the video the Iranian military is removing an unexploded mine from the side of the tanker to cover their tracks.

It is not clear why the Iranian military should take the mine off. Who even attached it? And what proves that it is Iranians in the footage? Absurd, but for the US, this footage is the strongest argument against Iran so far.
Of course, the situation in Bishkek was discussed extensively on the margins of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization Summit in a bilateral meeting between the Presidents of Russia and Iran. On the eve of the meeting Deputy Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov warned that “premature conclusions that would only pour oil into the fire.”

“I would like to take this opportunity to warn against premature conclusions, especially about attempts to shift responsibility to those who displease a number of states,” said Ryabkov.

Britain, however, quickly sided with the United States. Following the motto “Yes, yes. It was Iran.”
Germany, however, cautiously questioned the American evidence. “The video is not enough. Of course we can understand what is shown there. But it is not enough for me to make a final assessment,” said German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas.

France and also EU External Affairs Commissioner Mogherini spoke in the same vein.

It became clear that in the event of a US attack on Iran, Europe would regard this as aggression. Europe and its NATO allies on the continent clearly do not need this war.
However, it is alarming that it is clear to everyone that the sabotage in the Gulf of Oman is a classic provocation for the beginning of the war.

“News of the Week” has already reported that Trump has sent an armada of seven warships into the region, led by the aircraft carrier Abraham Lincoln. Another missile destroyer, the Mason, with Tomahawks on board, is also on the way. The region is now literally peppered with American tomahawks. The Americans have their finger on the trigger. All they lack is a reason to start a war. Now the occasion has been constructed. This is dangerous.

Our correspondent reports.

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This story looks like a provocation that Americans desperately need. The attacks on oil tankers are certainly not in the interest of Tehran and Washington’s evidence reminds us of Powell’s test tube. To construct an excuse for war, Americans have often lied to the world.

After the attack on civilian ships in the Gulf of Oman, the perpetrators were quickly found in Washington. The US President even reported that the magnetic mines found on the hull of one of the affected tankers carry the Iranian signature. How Donald Trump thinks he knows that is not clear: all the alleged evidence that has been presented does not allow such a conclusion.

The Central Military Command has spread the poor quality video widely. The Americans said it was made by a reconnaissance plane. In the recording, some boat approaches an unknown ship, after a short manipulation on the ship’s side, it sails away again. Tehran understandably explains that Washington’s allegations are absurd.

Common sense is on the side of Iran.

Attacks on oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman, i.e, endangering oil transportation through the Strait of Hormuz, would primarily hit the Iranian economy. The Strait of Hormuz, which connects the Gulf of Oman with the Persian Gulf, accounts for one-fifth of the world’s oil supply. And now, given the US sanctions, it is particularly important for Iran to be able to ship its oil to its customers in a stable manner.

Incidentally, one of the ships under attack is Japanese, and the tanker attack took place while Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe was visiting Iran and meeting with Ayatollah Khamenei. Abe should mediate during the visit between Tehran and Washington to ease the tensions, but against the background of such news, it is clear that the mission was doomed to failure.

The fact that the attack on tankers is only for the Americans is shown by how quickly US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo responded. He already accused Iran before the Central Command released the video.
“These unprovoked attacks are a threat to international peace and security, an open attack on the freedom of shipping, and an unacceptable campaign to escalate tensions on the side of Iran,” Pompeo said.

The Americans have already used the incident to reinforce their naval group here. Another missile destroyer, Arleigh Burke with cruise missiles on board, was ordered to the region.

Meanwhile, crew members of the tankers evacuated from the ships made statements that destroyed the already fragile American version. The sailors claim that the tankers were attacked from the air. But that is certainly not an Iranian handwriting. Before the attack on the tankers an American reconnaissance and an attack drone flew in the airspace. The Iranian military tried to shoot them with an antiaircraft rocket, but did not hit them. However, these are American statements.

Incidentally, the Iranian military was the first to come to the aid and organized the evacuation of the crew of the tanker Altair. On board were 11 Russian citizens. None of them was injured in the explosion.
Despite Washington’s previous attempts to construct a serious pretext, the allegations can not justify a military operation, but have only raised the level of tension.

In addition, it is now clear that the NATO allies are not united. And that’s already European pragmatism. Europe is generally irritated by the US withdrawal from the nuclear deal with Iran, and a military conflict is an extremely unpopular option. But it is possible that there will be new reasons in the near future, and Washington does not like to stay halfway.
End of the translation

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