US PRESIDENT Trump took America to the brink of war with Iran … and then pulled back at the very last minute on Thursday evening.
Trump had approved military strikes, the US army was given the green light and was prepping its weapons, getting ready to launch.
War planes were in the air, battleships in position, weapons were armed and activated and it was only a last minute ‘stand down, stand down’ order issued by Trump which averted a full-blown war between the two countries … for now.
Just because the US pulled back from the brink of war does not mean that it will not proceed. The US ruling class is being driven to war by the desperate economic and political crisis of US imperialism. It is desperate to get its hands on Iranian oil.
This latest US military escalation came after the Iranians successfully shot down a US spy drone that had entered its air space in the small hours of Thursday morning.
The US claimed that the RQ-4 Global Hawk was flying over international waters when it was taken down by an Iranian missile.
However, GPS coordinates released by Iran confirm that the US drone was eight miles off the country’s coast, inside the 12 nautical miles from the shore which is Iran’s territorial waters.
Iran has every right to defend itself, and it has the right to shoot down any war plane, or spy plane that violates its air space and violates its national sovereignty. Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister for Political Affairs Seyyed Abbas Araqchi protested at the US violation in a phone call with the Swiss envoy.
He called on Washington to respect Iran’s aerial and maritime borders, warning the Swiss envoy that ‘Iran will always act firmly in defending its soil and water without any hesitation.’
Majid Takht-e Ravanchi, Iran’s ambassador to the UN, wrote a letter addressed to United Nations Secretary General António Guterres and the UN Security Council on Thursday in which he said: ‘Iran condemns, in the strongest possible terms, this irresponsible and provocative wrongful act by the United States, which entails its international responsibility.’ Ravanchi wrote in the letter that Iran had the right to defend its sovereignty according to the UN Charter.
‘While the Islamic Republic of Iran does not seek war, it reserves its inherent right, under Article 51 of the United Nations Charter, to take all appropriate necessary measures against any hostile act violating its territory, and is determined to vigorously defend its land, sea and air.’
The RQ-4 drone aircraft costs a whopping $123 million a piece — about $34 million more than Lockheed Martin’s F-35A Lightning II, the Pentagon’s next-generation stealth fighter jet.
This is the first known instance of the ‘workhorse drone’ being shot down in its nearly 18-year operational history and shows the accuracy and effectiveness of Iran’s defence systems.
The US is responsible for the current dangerous military escalation. Last year, Trump pulled the United States out of the 2015 nuclear pact with Iran, ripping it up despite their European allies wanting to keep the agreement.
Trump then imposed further economic sanctions on Iran, trying to cut off its already limited access to international trade, including oil sales.
Earlier this month, the US government ratcheted up the stakes by sending an aircraft carrier strike group, B-52 bombers and at least 1,500 troops to the Middle East in a message to Iran that nothing will stop US imperialism’s desperate drive for Iranian oil, no matter the human cost.
Trump has now drawn back for the moment. The US does not want to get involved in another land war in Asia after its experiences in Korea and Vietnam with massive US casualties.
It would rather manufacture an incident which would allow it to strike Iran with nuclear weapons. Shooting down a drone does not come into that category.
Workers across the world must take action against any new imperialist war by disarming the imperialist powers with socialist revolutions in the UK and the USA. This is the way forward.