National Security

President Trump Won’t Take the Iranian Bait on Iraq

The commander-in-chief has reinforced the embassy in Baghdad with U.S. Marines and has called in other assets, including highly trained paratroopers

Image Credit: Shutterstock

In a childish attempt to lure President Donald Trump into a general war, ruling Iranian mullah Ayatollah Ali Khamenei told the president in a statement on Wednesday, “You can’t do a damn thing!”

That was in response to the unsuccessful Iranian-backed Tuesday mob and Islamist militia attack on the U.S. embassy in Baghdad, Iraq — and the president’s Tuesday night vow to make the Iranians pay a “big price” for their sponsorship of the attack.

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The ayatollah mistakes the president’s domestic political bluster — as do his domestic opponents — for thin skin and a knee-jerk reaction to slights. More savvy analysts see a method behind the president’s usual hyperbole.

His aggressive candor is deployed to take the message initiative away from this opponents and make them react to his moves, just as the ayatollah is doing here.

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President Trump has the initiative because he has reinforced the embassy in Baghdad with 100 U.S. Marines, called in attack air assets, and has ordered a force of 750 paratroopers from the U.S. 82nd Airborne Division to the region.

They should land shortly or already have. They’ll be followed by the rest of the 4,000 airborne-trooper strong Division Ready Brigade of the 82nd. Taking note of the current and upcoming reinforcements and realizing they have no chance of victory, the Iranian-backed Iraqi mobs left the scene on Wednesday.

These are prudent steps of deterrence — and show a canny restraint on the part of the president as well.

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The Iranians would like nothing more than to involve the U.S. in a protracted war close to their own turf in an American election year.

They could falsely try to justify any terrorist outrage anywhere in the world as a legitimate response to supposed American aggression. There are people around the world and in this country who would listen to them and support them in the effort.

Coincidently, this country’s Democrat Party, regardless of any cost in U.S. lives and material that would be involved in such a war, would likely relish the possibility of such a conflict. Democrats know that keeping the country safe, prosperous, and at peace is a vital prerequisite to a Trump victory at the polls this November of 2020.

As they have done in other conflicts such as the Vietnam War — and given the noted presence in their own party of such leftist radicals as Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) and Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.) — the Dems would likely side with U.S. battlefield opponents and do everything they could to hinder an American war effort.

But just as with the Iranians, the president is too shrewd to take their bait. He will guard our interests in the region and protect out installations and personnel — and he will not get the nation involved in another Middle Eastern quagmire.

By doing so, he will keep yet a further campaign promise to the American people.

David Kamioner
meet the author

David Kamioner is a veteran of U.S. Army Intelligence and an honors graduate of the University of Maryland's European Division. He also served with the Pershing Nuclear Brigade and the First Infantry Division. Subsequent to that he worked for two decades as a political consultant, was part of the American Red Cross Hurricane Katrina disaster relief effort in Louisiana, ran a homeless shelter for veterans in Philadelphia, and taught as a college instructor. He serves as a Contributing Editor for LifeZette.

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