Information operations · Information Warfare · Iran · Russia

Iran Escalation (16)

Anonymous expert compilation, analysis, and reporting.

The oil tanker attacks are worrisome.  

I lost a bunch of followers this week on Twitter, it just so happens Twitter just flushed a bunch of Iranian accounts…  

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Tehran continues its game of escalation – it needs war to drive oil prices up, and to distract its public from the regime’s domestic blundering. We should expect more attacks on POL/LNG shipping and other disruptive attacks.

Javad Zarif on Twitter: “Reported attacks on Japan-related tankers occurred while PM @AbeShinzo was meeting with Ayatollah @khamenei_ir for extensive and friendly talks. Suspicious doesn’t begin to describe what likely transpired this morning. Iran’s proposed Regional Dialogue Forum is imperative.”

Iran attack on Japanese ship ‘doesn’t make sense’ – YouTube

RT America Published on Jun 13, 2019 RT America’s Joe Ricci reports the details of the mysterious attack on two oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman on Thursday and how it serves Washington’s anti-Iran agenda. Then former US diplomat Jim Jatras joins Rick Sanchez to discuss media culpability in “rushing to pin the tail on the designated culprit.” He hopes that the US media’s “Trump derangement syndrome” will lead them to “do their job for once” and question the US response to the incident.

Iran calls tanker explosions ‘suspicious’ as global concern grows – YouTube

Al Jazeera English Published on Jun 13, 2019 Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif has described reported attacks on oil tankers near the Strait of Hormuz as “suspicious” as they coincided with a meeting between Japan’s prime minister and Iran’s supreme leader.

Iran rejects U.S. charge it attacked tankers after Central Command releases video – The Washington Post

The two tankers were targeted early Thursday in what observers said marked a serious escalation in the strategic waterway used to ship oil from the Persian Gulf.

China vows to develop ties with Iran after attack on tankers | Fox News

Chinese President Xi Jinping on Friday met with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani at a summit in Kyrgyzstan and reaffirmed Beijing’s willingness to develop ties with the country even as the U.S. placed the blame squarely on Tehran for the attack on two oil tankers near the Strait of Hormuz. Xi met with Rouhani privately at the Shanghai Cooperation Organization summit in Bishkek, Reuters reported. The Chinese leader promised to develop the relationship no matter how the situation changes. He recently told TASS news agency that Washington is putting “extreme pressure” on Iran and the “situation is worrying.” President Trump has taken a tough stance on both China and Iran in recent months. The U.S. is locked in a duel with Beijing on trade, with both countries appearing to be dug in for a long fight. The Trump administration has threatened to impose additional tariffs on $325 billion of Chinese exports if there’s no deal reached at this month’s G20 in Japan. Trump has said he wants to talk to Tehran but the U.S. has piled on sanctions that have seen Iran’s rial currency plummet along with its crucial oil exports. The U.S. also has sent an aircraft carrier and B-52 bombers to the region, along with hundreds more troops to back up the tens of thousands already deployed across the Middle East.

Iran’s Rouhani says U.S. actions threaten Middle East stability – Reuters

U.S. actions pose a serious threat to stability in the Middle East, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani told the leaders of a China-led security bloc including Russia and India on Friday.

Iranian President Tells SCO Summit That Trump Poses ‘Serious Risk’ To Stability

Iranian President Hassan Rohani has told a summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) in Bishkek that U.S. actions pose a “serious” threat to regional and global stability.

America is a ‘threat to global stability’ says Iranian president Rouhani | Daily Mail Online

Speaking in Kyrgyzstan at a summit where he met the leaders of Russia and China, Rouhani (pictured today) accused the U.S. of ‘violating international rules’ and taking an ‘aggressive approach’.

Jim Hanson: Iran’s aggression may force Trump to launch military attack | Fox News

The patience of the Trump administration with Iranian aggression is running out. A US military attack on Iran may be coming.

Ben Watson on Twitter: “Here’s that video: Not the best resolution, but it might be the closest we’ve got yet in terms of purported evidence linking the attacks to Iran. 1/2…”

The Iranian Tanker Attacks – WSJ

Looks like it was wise for the U.S. to send naval assets to the Gulf.

Chicago Boyz » Blog Archive » Iran’s Limpet Mine Tanker War

The US Navy has caught the Iranian Revolutionary Guard removing a limpet mine from Japanese Merchant Vessel Kokuka Courageous. The crew abandoned ship after seeing the second — failed — limpet mine on it’s hull and was picked up by a Dutch tug Coastal Ace. There was then a race between an Iranian Hendijan class patrol boat and a US Destroyer to pick up the Kokuka Courageous’ crew from Coastal Ace that the destroyer USS Bainbridge won. The video below is of a IRGC Gashti Class patrol boat that approached the M/T Kokuka Courageous afterwards. It was digital video recorded from USS Bainbridge or one of its aircraft removing the unexploded limpet mine from the M/T Kokuka Courageous. U.S. Releases Video of Alleged Gulf of Oman Tanker Attacks The earlier tanker attack on the Norwegian Front Altair saw the IRGC take the crew hostage and transport them to Iran. This Iranian behavior is the classic “Irrational regimes become more so under pressure” hypothesis in action. The basic concept is that for certain unstable regimes (or even stable ones with no effective means of resolving internal disputes peacefully, particularly the succession of power) domestic power games are far more important than anything foreign, and that foreigners are only symbols to use in domestic factional fights. What you are seeing here with the “Limpet Mine Tanker War” are the externals of the internal Mullah factional power games of ‘Who can be more nutball than thou‘ to gain more short term power without regards to external reality. “Nutball” in this case meaning “Attack the Great Satan” to show you are more daring, militant, and blessed by Allah. Thus deserving of power, money and followers inside the Iranian Mullahocracy. Now, as an exercise in pattern recognition, use this template and replace “Foreigners” with “other political party.” Hint — In political parties and other NGO’s it’s all about being captured in a “Patron-client” relationship by the narrow interests with the most money. If you want to know why things are so crazy in world and domestic American politics. Applying the “Irrational regimes become more so under pressure” hypothesis, which is driving Iran’s Limpet Mine Tanker War, will do much to answer the question.

US blames Iran for the tanker attacks. Here’s what the Navy could do

It will likely take days, weeks or even months for the military to go through the forensics needed to find out exactly who is behind the attack, but one expert says, “Iran’s ships are very exposed.”

Oil tanker attacks will inflame conflict between the US, its allies and Iran | World news | The Guardian

The explosions, on a vital passageway for the world’s oil supply, may prove Trump’s policy of coercion has backfired

Western allies blame Iran over tanker attacks in Gulf | World | The Times

Western allies rounded on Iran today after the United States released video that it said showed the crew of an Iranian vessel removing an unexploded mine from one of two oil tankers attacked at the entrance to the Gulf.Britain and Saudi Arabia released statements saying that they supported an assess

US Blames Tanker Attacks On Iran; CENTCOM Releases Surveillance Video – Defense One

Military officials say imagery shows Iranians in boats at the tankers, handling a mine and trying to capture crew members.

Iranian vessel removed unexploded mine from stricken oil tanker in Gulf of Oman, US officials say | Fox News

An Iranian vessel removed an unexploded mine that had been attached to a Japanese-owned oil tanker which suffered serious damage after an explosion in the Gulf of Oman early Thursday, U.S. officials told Fox News, as the U.S. Navy released video purportedly showing the incident.

Western oil supply may be at risk after tanker attack – YouTube

RT America Published on Jun 13, 2019 A mysterious attack in the Gulf of Oman damaged two cargo tankers on Thursday and could have worldwide repercussions if the area becomes unsafe. Thirty percent of the world’s oil passes through the nearby Strait of Hormuz. RT America’s Rachel Blevins reports for News.Views.Hughes.

The Guardian view on the US and Iran: on a collision course | Editorial | Opinion | The Guardian

Editorial: The attack on oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman is an ominous development. Can the escalation be halted?

Is the Iran-U.S. tinderbox about to ignite? – The Washington Post

Trump’s “maximum pressure” campaign has collided head on with Khamenei’s maximum resistance.

How the Oman tanker attack played out – CNN

The attack on two tankers in a vital Gulf of Oman waterway Thursday comes at a time of heightened tensions between the United States and Iran in the oil-rich region and raises concerns of a potential conflict in the Middle East.

Pompeo Says Intelligence Points to Iran in Tanker Attack in Gulf of Oman – The New York Times

The secretary of state offered no evidence, but said the actions fit into a pattern. The assertion is certain to fuel tensions between the Trump administration and Iranian leaders.

US Blames Tanker Attacks On Iran; CENTCOM Releases Surveillance Video – Defense One

Military officials say imagery shows Iranians in boats at the tankers, handling a mine and trying to capture crew members.

Iran rejects US talks after oil tanker attacks | News | The Times

The threat of military confrontation in the Gulf rose dramatically this morning when two more oil tankers came under rogue attack, with initial reports suggesting greater damage than in similar incidents last month.The two tankers, which were hit between Iran and Oman, were evacuated and all the cre

Tanker Crews Rescued Safely After Reported Attacks In Gulf Of Oman

The U.S. Navy’s Fifth Fleet says it is rendering assistance after receiving separate distress calls from two oil tankers reportedly under attack in the Gulf of Oman.

U.S. Navy aware of ‘reported attack’ on tankers in Gulf of Oman

The U.S. Navy said it was assisting after “reported attack” on two tankers in the Gulf of Oman on Thursday.

2 oil tankers damaged in suspected attack in the Gulf of Oman, crew evacuated | Fox News

A U.K. maritime safety group warned early Thursday of an unspecified incident in the Gulf of Oman, urging “extreme caution” amid U.S.-Iran tensions.

How Tanker Attacks on a Skinny Waterway Could Affect Oil Prices – The New York Times

The Strait of Hormuz, the gateway for a third of all crude oil by tanker, has become a security risk that could threaten the oil market.

Iran will get the blame, but the Gulf of Oman truth is likely a lot murkier – CNN

As the plumes rise from a brazen attack in the Gulf of Oman, oil brokers and diplomats are panicking about another lurch toward confrontation In the Middle East. Why it happened and who did it is not easy to explain, not least because it doesn’t appear to benefit any of the protagonists in the region.

Twitter deletes thousands of accounts tied to Iran, seeks to end false info campaigns – Reuters

Twitter Inc on Thursday said it removed thousands of accounts linked to coordinated, state-backed activities it believes were from the Iranian government and archived them to its public database launched last year.

Twitter removes thousands of accounts linked to Iran government | Technology | The Guardian

Nearly 4,800 accounts taken down by microblogging platform as part of effort to prevent election interference and misinformation