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MSM has accepted w/o question claim Maj. Gen. Qasem Soleimani is responsible for deaths of more than 600 Americans in Iraq.
I will explain how this is a Big Lie. Not by Trump, Pence, or Pompeo. But by the Pentagon.
Original claim is from Pentagon, as Military Times notes in April 2019. It says "Iran-backed militants" responsible for at least 603 American deaths. But MT noted, Pentagon did not provide report to back up claim. I.E., no independent confirmation.
Media regurgitates Pentagon propaganda that Soleimani behind 600+ American deaths. Screenshots from WaPo, WSJ, CNBC, Politico show how they link unsubstantiated claim, reinforcing bipartisan groupthink Soleimani is "bad guy"/"terrorist" who deserved to die.
This lie is coming from Pentagon/Nat Sec establishment, which liberals and media revere. This is crucial to understand: Rush towards war w/ Iran is bipartisan. Once Dems accept propaganda ab Soleimani, they enable Trump's war-mongering even if they claim to oppose it.
Now, I will dismantle the Big Lie. Note: I am not endorsing Soleimani, Iran's murderous theocracy, or its deadly actions in Iraq, mainly ag. Iraqi people. But real criminal is US, which in 2003 launched illegal occupation of Iraq that's killed >1 million people.
Take this @washingtonpost report, on "Soleimani's gruesome legacy," blaming him for the deaths of 196 Americans in Iraq from "high-tech" explosive devices.
@washingtonpost MSM reporting based on Pentagon. 2015 Military Times report says 196 Americans "killed by improvised explosive devices made in Iran."
Report notes that earlier, >500 deaths were blamed on Iran. Then in 4/2019, it's upped to >600 deaths.
@washingtonpost This is big red flag.
1st, # of American deaths changes wildly.
2nd, claims ab Iran responsibility are broad: It's blamed for backing Iraqi militias, supplying weapons, manufacturing weapons. Which is it?
3rd, no evidence provided
MSM should be highly skeptical, but they aren't.
@washingtonpost What's evidence for 196 deaths? Pentagon does not provide any. We're told deaths from high-tech "explosively formed penetrators."
This is rewriting history. When Iraq War raged in 2000s, media nearly always called them IEDs: improvised explosive devices.
@washingtonpost Back in 2007, Pentagon began claiming Iran was behind EFPs. But having been burned just a few years earlier, MSM was skeptical. Even @nytimes was skeptical, which tends to regurgitate WH propaganda as fact. Such as in this article.
@washingtonpost @nytimes Specialty media ripped apart Pentagon claim that Iran was making high-tech weapons. For years, DoD called these weapons "improvised explosive devices." So in an instant, they go from improvised to high-tech. Wired says bombs were likely "home-made in Iraq"
@washingtonpost @nytimes In Feb 2007, Bush also blamed deadly bombs on Iran. But Andrew Cockburn reported in @latimes, a machine shop in Baghdad was found making key parts for explosively formed penetrators, and stated devices were not sophisticated nor needed Iranian help.
@washingtonpost @nytimes @latimes EFPs are old technology. Oil companies invented it in 1930s. EFPs then weaponized in WWII. Now, Trump, Pentagon, and MSM all claim weapon that's >70 yo is sophisticated and needed Iran help, but during Iraq War media noted how common + low-tech EFPs were.
@washingtonpost @nytimes @latimes French Resistance used EFPs in WWII. IRA did same in Northern Ireland. Used by Hezbollah in Lebanon in 1990s. If French resistance could make EFPs in 1940s under Nazi rule, fair to say this is a low-tech home-made weapon in the 2000s.
@washingtonpost @nytimes @latimes There is another reason Pentagon claim falls apart that Soleimani/Iran was responsible for 196 American deaths in Iraq: looking at US casualties in Iraq. Evidence would show up in this database covering every single US military death in Iraq War.
@washingtonpost @nytimes @latimes The Military Times claimed that EFP attacks peaked in the spring of 2008. Except look at the icasualties database from March 1- July 31 2008, there were 72 US military killed by IEDs. Only 2 are listed as dead from EFPs.
@washingtonpost @nytimes @latimes iCasualties got info from DoD press releases. So during time when Iran was allegedly killing off lots of Americans with high-tech explosive devices, the Pentagon records only two such deaths.
@washingtonpost @nytimes @latimes Compare US combat deaths by IED with location. Hard to make case Iran was involved. In mid-2008, most IED deaths are in Baghdad, which could have been Shia, Ba'athist, Al Qaeda, or dozens of other militias.
@washingtonpost @nytimes @latimes During war, 1,876 Americans killed by IEDs in Iraq. Most deaths were in Fallujah, Mosul, Ramadi, Tikrit, Tal Afar, Diyala, etc. I.E., locations controlled by Sunni, Baathist, AQI, and Shia militias were nonexistent or had little presence.
@washingtonpost @nytimes @latimes I saved best evidence for last as to why Pentagon is lying when it claims Soleimani was responsible for 196 deaths from high-tech explosive devices in Iraq: you can google up info on how to build them. Such as this video:
@washingtonpost @nytimes @latimes In 2004, the US Army published a doc w/ designs of explosively formed penetrators. That's right, the US Army was providing info on how to make deadly EFPs that supposedly only big, bad Soleimani and Iran could do. apps.dtic.mil/dtic/tr/fullte…
@washingtonpost @nytimes @latimes More evidence on how to build an explosively formed penetrator can be gleaned from Wikipedia.
@washingtonpost @nytimes @latimes Shortly after Bush White House began "blame Iran" campaign for EFPs killing Americans, Stratfor explained devices were "Cheap, Easy to make, and Effective," and included info about how to manufacture them.
@washingtonpost @nytimes @latimes Wired explains that EFPs are "intermediate technology," meaning once developed, it's cheap and easy to copy. In 19th-century South Asia under British rule, guerrillas made perfect counterfeits of "modern Martini-Henry rifles."
@washingtonpost @nytimes @latimes Read this Gareth Porter article, which blows apart Pentagon claim that Iran was main source of deadly bombs to Shi'a militias in Iraq.
@washingtonpost @nytimes @latimes A final point and caveat. Journalism means looking honestly at counter-evidence. Many IED deaths were in Baghdad at hands of pro-Iran militias. @nytimes cites alleged evidence of Iran hand in EFPs. But, so what?
@washingtonpost @nytimes @latimes Don't lose sight of big picture.
*US war in Iraq has gone on >30 years.
*US and allies been tormenting Iran for 70 years.
*2003 war built on lies, was criminal, destabilized entire region, killed nearly 2 million people in Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Yemen.
@washingtonpost @nytimes @latimes Bush invented "Axis of Evil"—N Korea, Iraq, Iran—to launch endless wars. Iran has every reason to fear invasion, bombs, coups, covert ops. Trump boasts sanctions are "toughest ever." They are act of war ag 83 million Iranians.
@washingtonpost @nytimes @latimes In this context, and history of Western colonialism in Middle East, Iran would be stupid if it did not intervene and seek influence in Iraq after the criminal US invasion.
MSM is too jingoistic, racist to acknowledge this.
@washingtonpost @nytimes @latimes You do not have to like or support Iranian state (and I don't) to recognize in such a brutal, cynical world, Tehran will do whatever it can to protect themselves. When up against the bloodthirsty ghouls in Washington, D.C., they are not the problem.
@washingtonpost @nytimes @latimes The problem is Trump, Pentagon, FOX media, and Bush/Cheney foremost. Then Congressional Dems and MSM for buying into racist narratives. If media were really objective they would treat Iranian gov exact same as USG.
@washingtonpost @nytimes @latimes Instead, liberal media like New Yorker profile Soleimani as a globe-trotting thug and assassin. Maybe he was. But compare him to CIA, whose history is one of death squads, murder, coups, torture.
@washingtonpost @nytimes @latimes Until America accepts brown/Black nations as equals, these horrors will worsen.
Finally, make no mistake, Trump is far worse than Obama, who tried to normalize relations w/ Iran. While Dems legitimize Trump's war, fascism in all forms is #1 enemy. Not Iran, not even neolibs.
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