Trump and his allies are trying to push Iran into a corner and provoke it to lash out at US forces that are poised around it. A navel clash in the Gulf is the obvious pretext for war.
The world’s silence on Israel’s desire to see the Iranian government “disappear entirely from this world” is proof of the double standards inherent in International Relations when most of the same actors felt compelled to condemn Iran for wishing that the Israeli government would “vanish from the pages of time”, which essentially means the exact same thing.
Direct western intervention in a major ground campaign seems unlikely. But the US and Israeli war plan would aim to totally destroy Iran’s infrastructure, communications and transport (including oil) crippling this important nation of 80 million and taking it back to the pre-revolutionary era.
Khamenei’s speech makes it clear that in the pursuit of national interest, Iran will have to navigate its path on its own steam, as has been the case during its past 4-decade old history. The diplomacy will be supple but purposive (“wise and oriented”).
Trust Russian diplomacy to work on an approach that somehow connects the various dots in the jigsaw puzzle – Iran nuclear deal, sanctions against Iran, Syrian conflict, Israel-Iran tensions, US-Iran standoff, energy security and so on. The point is, Russia is uniquely placed – on talking terms with both the US and Israel on one side and Iran and Syria on the other side.
Clumsily attempting to manage a multinational war effect at the spur of the moment after an unexpected outbreak of hostilities might even hold the US back from its full potential, with it being much more effective just “going it alone” with its massive military instead of wasting time trying to get insignificant countries to jump on board with it.
Europe cannot cave in to US pressure, but it cannot realistically break ties with Washington when rejecting it, much less lay a claim to the mantle of global leadership. Europe simply wants more independence, which is already asking a lot, given the current state of world affairs. To achieve this, Europe needs to develop a more favorable balance of forces and interests.
Trump is testing Hybrid War technologies in Iran hoping to militarize the most extreme minority opposition groups against the government in surrounding the centrally located Persian majority with peripheral terrorist insurgencies.
Rosneft chief executive Igor Sechin announced that his company signed a roadmap to invest the mind-numbingly large sum of $30 billion in the Iranian energy sector.
The renewed diplomatic offensive that’s being waged against Iran’s regional interests might have a majorly unintended effect in strengthening Tehran’s political will to support its allied militias abroad.
What is possible is a Saudi-Iranian mutual accommodation, which would be useful for calming some of the ‘hotspots’ – similar to what happened in the case of the Taif accord ending the civil war in Lebanon.
It’s worthwhile to revisit the question of who has an interest in destabilizing Saudi Arabia right at the moment that it’s turning away from the US and towards Russia and China.