HomeArticleSeven Reasons To Be Highly Skeptical Of The Gulf Of Oman Incident

Seven Reasons To Be Highly Skeptical Of The Gulf Of Oman Incident

In a move that surprised exactly zero people, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has wasted no time scrambling to blame Iran for damage done to two sea vessels in the Gulf of Oman on Thursday, citing exactly zero evidence.

“This assessment is based on intelligence, the weapons used, the level of expertise needed to execute the operation, recent similar Iranian attacks on shipping, and the fact that no proxy group operating in the area has the resources and proficiency to act with such a high-degree of sophistication,” Pompeo told the press in a statement.

“The United States will defend its forces, interests, and stand with our partners and allies to safeguard global commerce and regional stability. And we call upon all nations threatened by Iran’s provocative acts to join us in that endeavor,” Pompeo concluded before hastily shambling off, taking exactly zero questions.

Here are seven reasons to be extremely skeptical of everything Pompeo said:

1. Pompeo is a known liar, especially when it comes to Iran.

Pompeo has a well-established history of circulating blatant lies about Iran and the behavior of the Iranian government, and he recently told an audience at Texas A&M University that when he was leading the CIA, “We lied, we cheated, we stole. We had entire training courses.”

2. The US empire is known to use lies and false flags to start wars.

The US-centralized power alliance has an extensive and well-documented history of advancing preexisting military agendas using lies, false flags and psyops to make targeted governments appear to be the aggressors. This is such a well-established pattern that “Gulf of Tonkin” briefly trended on Twitter after the Gulf of Oman incident. Any number of government agencies could have been involved from any number of the nations in this alliance, including the US, the UK, the KSA, the UAE, or Israel.

3. John Bolton has openly endorsed lying to advance military agendas.

I wrote an article about this last month because the Trump administration had already begun rapidly escalating against Iran in ways that happen to align perfectly with the longtime agendas of Trump’s psychopathic Iran hawk National Security Advisor. At that time people were so aware of the possibility that Bolton might involve himself in staging yet another Middle Eastern war based on lies that The Onion was already spoofing it.

On a December 2010 episode of Fox News’ Freedom Watch, Bolton and the show’s host Andrew Napolitano were debating about recent WikiLeaks publications, and naturally the subject of government secrecy came up.

“Now I want to make the case for secrecy in government when it comes to the conduct of national security affairs, and possibly for deception where that’s appropriate,” Bolton said. “You know Winston Churchill said during World War Two that in wartime truth is so important it should be surrounded by a bodyguard of lies.”

“Do you really believe that?” asked an incredulous Napolitano.

“Absolutely,” Bolton replied.

“You would lie in order to preserve the truth?”

“If I had to say something I knew was false to protect American national security, I would do it,” Bolton answered.

This would be the same John Bolton who has been paid exorbitant speaking fees by the pro-regime change MEK terror cult, promising the cult in a 2017 speech that they’d be celebrating regime change in Tehran together before 2019. This would also be the same John Bolton who once threatened to murder an OPCW official’s children if he didn’t stop getting in the way of his Iraq war agenda.

4. Using false flags to start a war with Iran is already an established idea in the DC swamp.

Back in 2012 at a forum for the Washington Institute Of Near East Policy think tank, the group’s Director of Research Patrick Clawson openly talked about the possibility of using a false flag to provoke a war with Iran, citing the various ways the US has done exactly that with its previous wars.

“I frankly think that crisis initiation is really tough, and it’s very hard for me to see how the United States president can get us to war with Iran,” Clawson began.

“Which leads me to conclude that if in fact compromise is not coming, that the traditional way that America gets to war is what would be best for US interests,” Clawson added. “Some people might think that Mr. Roosevelt wanted to get us into the war… you may recall we had to wait for Pearl Harbor. Some people might think that Mr. Wilson wanted to get us into World War One; you may recall we had to wait for the Lusitania episode. Some people might think that Mr. Johnson wanted to get us into Vietnam; you may recall we had to wait for the Gulf of Tonkin episode. We didn’t go to war with Spain until the USS Maine exploded. And may I point out that Mr. Lincoln did not feel that he could call out the Army until Fort Sumter was attacked, which is why he ordered the commander at Fort Sumter to do exactly that thing which the South Carolinians said would cause an attack.”

“So if, in fact, the Iranians aren’t going to compromise, it would be best if somebody else started the war,” Clawson continued. “One can combine other means of pressure with sanctions. I mentioned that explosion on August 17th. We could step up the pressure. I mean look people, Iranian submarines periodically go down. Some day, one of them might not come up. Who would know why? [Smattering of sociopathic laughter from the crowd.] We can do a variety of things, if we wish to increase the pressure (I’m not advocating that) but I’m just suggesting that this is not an either/or proposition — just sanctions have to succeed or other things. We are in the game of using covert means against the Iranians. We could get nastier at that.”

5. The US State Department has already been running psyops to manipulate the public Iran narrative.

State Department officials admitted to Congressional staff at a closed-door meeting on Monday that a $1.5 million troll farm had gone “beyond the scope of its mandate” by aggressively smearing American critics of the Trump administration’s Iran policy as propagandists for the Iranian government, according to a new report from The Independent.  That “mandate” had reportedly consisted of “countering propaganda from Iran”, also known as conducting anti-Iran propaganda.

“Critics in Washington have gone further, saying that the programme resembled the type of troll farms used by autocratic regimes abroad,” says The Independent.

“One woman behind the harassment campaign, a longtime Iranian-American activist, has received hundreds of thousands of dollars from the State Department over the years to promote ‘freedom of expression and free access to information,'” the report reads.

6. The Gulf of Oman narrative makes no sense.

One of the ships damaged in the attacks was Japanese-owned, and the other was bound for Japan. This happened just as Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe was in Tehran attempting to negotiate a de-escalation between the US and Iran with Trump’s blessing , and just after Iran had released a prisoner accused of conducting espionage for the US in what many took to be a gesture of good faith.

Iran has been conducting itself with remarkable restraint in the face of relentless sanctions and provocations from the US and its allies; it wouldn’t make much sense for it to suddenly abandon that restraint with attacks on sea vessels, then rescue their crew, then deny perpetrating the attacks, during a time of diplomatic exchanges and while trying to preserve the nuclear deal with Europe. If Tehran did perpetrate the attacks in order to send a strong message to the Americans, it would have been a very mixed message sent in a very weird way with very odd timing.

7. Even if Iran did perpetrate the attack, Pompeo would still be lying.

Pompeo’s statement uses the words “unprovoked” twice and “Iran’s provocative acts” once, explicitly claiming that the US empire was just minding its own business leaving Iran alone when it was attacked out of the blue by a violent aggressor. Sometimes the things put out by the US State Department feel like they’re conducting experiments on us, just to test the limits of our stupidity.

As noted in this article by Moon of Alabama and this discussion on the Ron Paul Liberty Report, the US has been provoking Iran with extremely aggressive and steadily tightening sanctions, which means that even if Tehran is behind the attacks, it would not be the aggressor and the attacks would most certainly not have been “unprovoked”. Economic sanctions are an act of war; if China were to do to America’s economy what America is doing to Iran’s, the US would be in a hot war with China immediately. It could technically be possible that Iran is pushing back on US aggressions and provocations, albeit in a strange and neoconservatively convenient fashion.

Either way, we have seen exactly zero evidence supporting Pompeo’s claims, so anyone you see hastening to blame Iran for the Gulf of Oman incident is either a war whore or a slobbering moron, or both. Knowing what we know about the US-centralized empire and its pre-existing regime change agenda against Iran, there is no reason to believe Pompeo and many reasons not to.

______________________________

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Latest comments

  • New to this website. Glad to have found it. The whole story the US wants the world to believe doesn’t make sense.

    So the USS Bainbridge approached the kokaku and took photos including one showing “likely mine”. So it was there before the mine was removed. Did it take some of the newer photos we have been shown now (2 days later) at the same time? If so why not a close up of the mine?

    But it must have moved away from the tanker before launching one of its on board helis (Bainbridge carries 2 Uh-60 sea hawks according to wiki) which took photos and video of the “Iranian” boat. Why do we have a shitty video as evidence, it was 4.10pm when the say they observed the “Iranians removing the mine”. Surely the video should be better quality than what most of us plebs have.

    Then it went back to take close up photos of where the “mine” had been.

    Also they flew right above the “IRGC” boat, but they didnt attack the newly designated terrorists who they thought were responsible!

    • You aren’t totally wrong, especially about the shitty video. however – attacking an Iranian patrol boat in international waters (or their waters) is a good way to start a war.

    • If you have a good look at the photo released Monday, supposedly of IRGC special forces soon after attacking the Kokuka Courageous, you’ll notice that they appear very relaxed and unconcerned. Odd for people in their situation being pursued by a US military helicopter. They don’t seem at all worried it might open fire on them any second.

  • America – the worlds creepy paedophile neighbour that nobody wants in their village.

  • Hi Caitlin, I have posted the following elsewhere but I thought you might appreciate my take on this BS from USA warmongering.

    Trump has been checkmated by his own team and their rush to a false flag in the Gulf of Oman. Now the price of gas will go sky high and Trump will tank. One thing is certain and that is that Trump and the B team are now hostage to Iran and anyone else with a small drone and a phosphor bomb or rpg or whatever. How many enemies does the USA or B team have and what does their global distribution look like, I can tell you it reaches way beyond the Gulf of Oman.

    Thanks to the clever funding and supply operations by France, UK, USA, Saudi Arabia etc etc, there are heaps of trained jihadis with drones and skills for drones. Plus they are easy to make. Just ask the good people of Idlib, the Houthis, the Syrians, the Iraqis, the Uighurs. A global information hub.

    So now because the Trump belligerents and the B team of ignoramuses have unleashed a false flag or two, they have given the whip to the hand of the most impassioned hater of the west.

    Trump is finished if these random attacks continue. Right now it is the ‘driving season’ in the USA and the petroleum price is rising and the driver of this price is fear, insurance, market betting on future price, the sound of a drone flying over a tanker.

    All now totally out of Trump’s control. A useless seventh fleet on standby.

    All Iran needs to do now is make it clear that when all the sanctions and embargoes finish and the USA rejoins the nuclear treaty and agrees to the international Rule of Law rather than some nonsense about ‘rules based order’, then it might consider talking with Trump.

    Jimmy Carter knows how that feels and there will be lots of motorists tying yellow ribbons on the pumps etc to remind us of how the USA is hostage again. Yellow vests and yellow ribbons all representing unfair costs on the least able to pay: vale Trump.

    Check to you Donald Trump and the B team and you can’t move as someone has a drone to play on the board.

  • Myself and fellow Moon of Alabama commentator Peter AU 1 have solved the riddle of the “Limpet mine removal” video seen here. After a discussion and watching the video many times, I came to the following conclusion:

    “I’ve seen enough. What we’re shown is the very last crewman being guided onto/into the Iranian boat. On the bow are two Iranian crew, one reaching the tanker crewman, the other steadying the reacher’s legs against the sight motion of the ocean. Once the tanker crewman’s in the cockpit, the sitting Iranian crewman gets into the cockpit while the standing man remains standing, probably since he’s bilingual and capable of communicating instructions–a vital component even with easy rescues like this one. Everyone’s milling about in the bow because they just got there and want to ensure the safety of their shipmates. The poor resolution video was chosen because it hides numerous details. Plenty of time was available for photoshopping the limpet mine addition, which helped fool those watching the video. ”

    Our discussion can be followed beginning here. The limpet mine chimera clearly confused many as it did me at the outset. So far as I know as of 1630 PST, no one else has reached our conclusion. We are certain but have asked others to also look again. I hope this comment will be read and others will also look again, especially Caitlin, who can then write the Scoop article and expose the lies of the Outlaw US Empire to the world yet again.

    • I am not saying you are wrong ,but your explanation is confusing. Why were Iranian sailors being rescued from that ship ? Was the ship already burning ? How do you know the small boat was in fact an Iranian craft ? If you have a more complete explanation I would be very grateful if you would post it please, and thanks for joining our discussion.

    • A commenter at Craig Murray’s blog suggests the “mine” in the video is actually a magnet:

      https://www.craigmurray.org.uk/archives/2019/06/the-gulf-of-credibility/comment-page-5/#comment-874852

      Iain
      June 16, 2019 at 10:48
      US release a grainy video they claim shows the removal of a mine from the side of a ship they use as groof of Iranian guilt..

      If something was removed it was more likely to have been a magnetic mooring point used by the Iranian boats to stay close to the ships hull while rescuing personnel.

      Likely to be pretty standard equipment for the sort of jobs done with these boats

      They are an “Off the shelf” product
      https://www.offshore-technology.com/contractors/environmental/miko-marine/

  • Am I missing something about the video “proving” Iranian guilt? The video shows Iranian sailors removing a mine from the ship, not attaching it.

    • The official US version of what is going on in this video is as follows :

      The Iranians first attach the mine to the ship, but then later changed their minds because they didn’t want to get caught, and send a patrol boat to remove it.

      There are so many things wrong with this explanation they almost don’t bear repeating. For instance nobody actually saw the Iranians attaching line to the ship, unexploded mines typically don’t leave signatures all over the place, ship of course knowing that the Iranians wanted to attach the mine was kind enough to stop to let them do it because that’s what big ships like this do when people want to attach mines to them And of course the gunboat is obviously Iranian because you can see the words I ran printed on it and big letters.

      If this is the best of us can come up with in fake videos they probably ought to vote a little bit larger budget to making these things and perhaps ask for some assistance from Hollywood. The stupid is very strong in this one.

      • It would be good to know which intelligence agency made the interpretation that the video shows Iranian guilt.

        This is about as stupid as the “Filipino Monkey” incident in 2008. No Academy Awards for either performance.

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Filipino_Monkey

        • It was an intelligence agency that is staffed by monkeys who mostly spend time trying to fuck footballs.

          Actually, the lousy resolution was on purpose as there doesn’t seem to be anything that resembles a mine.

          The government and Hollywood need to have a better relationship. I know 12 year olds that could make a better fake video.

          • The video has the grainy appearance of UFO photos.

            • Or the Loch Ness Monster

  • #8. Ship’s crew denies US version.
    .
    Japanese Tanker Owner Denies Ship Hit By Mine, Says Crew Saw “Flying Objects” Before Attack
    https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2019-06-14/japanese-tanker-owner-denies-ship-hit-mine-says-crew-saw-flying-objects-attack

  • The Japanese media, at least this article in the [Mainichi Shimbun](https://mainichi.jp/articles/20190613/k00/00m/030/220000c), reports “船体後部に砲弾が貫通したような穴が開いていたという.”

    “[The attack caused] opening of a hole in the stern section of the hull similar to that made by penetration of an artillery shell.”
    The source was identified as the company which operates the ship.

    Any of the western news outlets could sourced this info, but all chose to promulgate a new term “flying object” that conceals the obvious fact that a shell was launched from the starboard side, away from Iran, where a US or allied naval ship would be.

  • #9. Arms sales. Convenient timing…
    .
    Senators Switched Key Votes On Gulf Arms Ban Hours After Tanker Attacks
    https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2019-06-14/senators-switched-key-votes-bill-gulf-arms-ban-hours-after-tanker-attacks

    • In other words, a successful mission assuming it was a false flag incident.

  • Good artilce, Caitlin and Tim, but I think that with the recent history of Yugoslavia, Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, Syria and Yemen, anybody who actually believes just about anything the US’s various Departments of Wars have to say is a fucking moron.
    ..
    Again, literally millions of people marched and protested against the Vietnam genocide, but that could not compete with the billions of fiat dollars that War Corporations made off that genocide. Unfortunately, the US was not politically capable of stopping itself then, and it’s increasingly obvious that it is not capable of it now. There’s just too much campaign money available from the war corporations and there are too many people employed in their industries. Therefore, an outside force is going to have to stop the US from doing what it has been doing to the world since WWII.

  • Just another false flag to get the US into a war against Iran to please Israel and his zionist masters, namely Sheldon Adelson.

    And I wish someone on the left would start talking about this:

    https://www.mintpressnews.com/dnc-lawyers-argue-primary-rigging-protected-first-amendment/238133/

    So, the primary was rigged last time (they stole it from Bernie and gave it to Hillary) and they are going to do it again. They are just going to keep using fake polls to convince the people that the DNC/MSM-declared “front runner” really is popular even it nobody shows up for the so-called rallies.

    It’s all just a show for the sheep to give them the illusion that they have a voice.

  • Mike Pompeo is a religious zealot from Kansas who constantly talks about the coming “Rapture”, which of course only occurs when such zealots reach their desired goal which is Armageddon and the end of human civilization as we know it. Of course, like all religious zealots, they of course tell us that what comes after all of the death, destruction, pain and misery from Armageddon and the end up human civilization as we know it will of course be worth it and that thus all we have to do is to take their vision on faith and wait to get to paradise. The Pied Piper leading us all to Paradise, by route of nuclear holocaust.

  • Another excellent and rational article, Caitlin. The United States and it’s military-industrial-intelligence agencies are not to be believed at the best of times. The U.S. is the most belligerent, vicious, power-mad country on the planet earth. The only thing the government does is make war and destroy things. The people of the U.S. get nothing from the government except austerity and war. All the money is spent on weapons of war, spying, propaganda, death and destruction. Think about that for a minute. “What does your country export?” “Well, WAR mainly. And weapons.” This is shameful and likely to get us all killed.

  • The world is controlled by psychopaths. Resist!

  • Bolton tried to get Israel to attack Iran way back in the last presidency he infested, that of George Bush the Lesser, according to a former Israeli defense minister.
    “A former Israeli defense minister and chief of staff said Sunday that John Bolton, US President Donald Trump’s incoming national security adviser, once pushed him to order airstrikes against Iran.
    “I know John Bolton from when he was the US ambassador to the UN. He tried to convince me that Israel needs to attack Iran,” Shaul Mofaz told a Jerusalem conference held by the Yedioth Ahronoth daily. ”
    https://www.timesofisrael.com/ex-defense-minister-says-john-bolton-pushed-for-israeli-strike-on-iran/

  • USSLibertyMovie(.)com > psychopath LBJ staged Liberty for a Gulf of Tonkin in the Mediterranean

    “Israel Attacked USS Liberty with Orders to Kill 294 Americans” > GlobalResearch(.)ca

  • Actually, the Iranians do have something to gain from the current spate of incidents. When the most recent incidents were reported, the price of crude oil jumped 4% or so. This came after a series of US threats, so the message to the West was twofold: 1. We can hurt you; 2. We’re not afraid to. Iran’s move (if it was theirs) would obviously present US rulers and war planners with a serious set of problems: not only the prospect of a difficult, costly and risky war with Iran, but a further decline in the reputation of the US government as a reliable and rational institution. The election is too far off for the war patriotism response not to turn sour, but it is not too far off to be affected by an unsuccessful war.

    However it is true that nothing Mr. Pompeo says is to be believed; in this he is like other politicians, leaders, bureaucrats, and their servants: he desires power over others, and so he must use lies, propaganda, and other modes of untruth to gain and keep that power. I am simply going here on facts which are generally accepted by all parties.

    Incidentally, the page I am commenting on does not show up in Firefox, although it does in Chrome and some other browsers. I get a blank page in FF. Maybe someone should check this out.

    • I disagree. The US could pretty much obliterate Iran right now and they know this. I doubt if the US actually feels threatened by Iran militarily at this time. “We can hurt you” and “We will” is very weak indeed.

      However, if Iran actually develops nuclear weapons and a delivery system, the US will absolutely leave them alone relative to regime change and/or ground invasion or air attack, much like North Korea. Let’s hope the Iranians are able to do this and soon as it will make the world a much safer place. The only defense against US aggression is nuclear armament.

    • So, the Iranians “gain” because the oil that they now have trouble in selling goes up in price? But of course, the Saudi head-choppers sell a lot more oil every day and the rise in prices helps them. The same with all of the die-hard Republicans in the US oil industry who now produce more oil than the Sauds and likewise gain more from the slight and probably temporary bump in the price than the Iranians who have limited outlets at which to sell their oil. PS…. I’m seeing and commenting on this page in FF

    • I’ve been having similar problems lately, but the other way round: I can reach the WSWS website and comments via Firefox, but not Chrome.

  • It seems highly likely that this was a false flag operation conducted by US forces rather than by the Iranians, who have nothing to gain by starting a war with the US. Conversely, by starting a war with Iran Trump gains political capital close to an election, defense contractors gain obscene amounts of money, and Bolton gains something new to masturbate to

  • This is another example of the Doofus Degeneration gang that couldn’t coup straight. They can’t false flag straight, either. Eye-witnesses on the Japanese tanker saw flying objects before the explosions. There was a US warship on the horizon. This could have been objects shot from a rail gun. Oil tankers are internationally maritime coded to be double hulled – an object shot from a rail gun could pass through a ship’s hulls like a hot knife through butter, striking it above the water line.

  • Ms. Caitlin, thank you for the nice, intelligent, wise comments you have made in the last few days. Keep up the good work!

  • Ms. Caitlin, thank you for the nice, intelligent, wise comments you have made in the last few days. You remind me of J. Krishnamurti….

  • Well Lady, here I was all prepared to go on Word Press and write exactly what you did! With the price of Oil falling, and world demand for it falling, those Neo-cons are all aflutter to gear up the military/industrial complex and make our young men cannon fodder again. If they want a war then they should be at the front of the parade leading the charge, but of course they will be hiding out in their pentagon bomb shelters. Why do people have such a hard time seeing the obvious hypocrisy of these evil men? I guess it’s like you said in your last missive; “It’s the Propaganda, stupid.” A Pox on Fox!, and all the rest of the corporate media. I sure like you and Fair.Org and Democracy Now! I am listening to BBC news telling American lies about the gulf. Note: The Iranians would use torpedos, the USA uses Limpet Mines……

  • It is interesting that in the world of today, completely buried in lies on all sides, we will never know the real truth of this affair. Therefore Caitlin’s analysis is as good as you are going to get. Smelling a rat in the totally discredited US government’s version things involving Iran is reason enough to reject Pompeo’s claims.

  • Evidence was the Iran boat that went back to one of the oil tankers, + removed a bomb attached to the ship, that didnt go off. Shown in a video, + the crew Iran still has in their possession.

    • Care to provide a link to the video?

  • I normally agree with you Caitlin – but I think on this you are wrong. The Points 6 and 7 you make are the most plausible. I think Iran is sending a message to the US which is essentially this. Don’t swallow the shit Netanyahu tells you and think that striking Iran will be painless. I think this shows skill and courage by Iran – and it’s the kind of message Trump will understand, even if Bolton doesn’t.

    • The Iranians aren’t stupid or reckless enough to provoke the US war machine and have no reason to. This was a sloppy US false flag operation.

      • As an Iranian move, it seems rather rational and measured to me. As the British and French found out in trying to deal with Hitler, appeasement may not work with a committed bully. I assume the Iranian leadership know how to read history.

  • Great post in the cause of truth and peace. And I see you must like James Corbett as much as I do.

    The true God of the true Bible knows what all the truth is, and He will most certainly judge.

  • Everyone can see what’s going on
    They laugh ’cause they know they’re untouchable
    Not because what I said was wrong
    Through their own words
    They will be exposed
    They’ve got a severe case of
    The emperor’s new clothes

  • We only need 1 reason:
    We know who they are, we know how they are, we know what they are looking for, we know that they are only interested in worlwide domination. We know they are THE MANIPULATORS: if we know this:
    – why should we even pay attention or consider anything they say?
    -Will you believe/listen/pay attention to a well known murderer who tells you that he is threatened by a neighbor?
    -why do we harbor any doubt?

  • Mr. Paul Craig Roberts calls them ” American Dumbshits ” because they continue to believe the contemptible idiotic lies that come out of the months of our notorious politicians. Ms Johnstone is way too kind to Mr. numbnuts. These fools of ours are going to attack Iran and our service men and women are going to pay a dear price for their stupendous military folly. United States politicians are addicted to war like a junkie is addicted to narcotics. They just do not know how to stop.

  • Neither Bolt-on or Poppeo could muster enough evidence to take a Sh!t. The latter is a clown saying precisely what Trump has ordered him to say. The deep state is now replaced by the deep moron – Trump and family.

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