Remember when we reported on the US invasion of Iran? The article that we wrote about the entry of U.S. troops into an Iranian consulate in Irbil, Iraq, on January 11th. Well, the UK news site The Independent is reporting that our troops missed their real targets, the deputy head of the Iranian national security council, Mohammed Jafari, and General Minojahar Frouzanda, the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Chief of Intelligence.
This is as Independent’s author Patrick Cockburn aptly describes it “…as if Iran had tried to kidnap the heads of the CIA and MI6 while they were on an official visit to a country neighboring Iran, such as Pakistan or Afghanistan.”
The attempted provocation of the Iranian government did not stop with that attack. On the fourth of February, Iraqi commandos likely under U.S. Command seized an Iranian diplomat Jalal Sharafi, who was the second secretary of the Iranian Embassy in Baghdad.
Iraqi officials earlier said the gunmen were wearing uniforms of the Iraqi 36th Commando Battalion – a special Iraqi unit under US direction
The U.S. subsequently denied that either US troops or Iraqi soldiers were involved.
We’ve checked with our units and it was not a [multinational forces – Iraq] unit that participated in that event
Lt Col Christopher Garver,
US military spokesman
The seizing of the 15 British sailors is likely a retaliation by Iran with the aim of forcing the U.S. military to release the illegally detained consular officials who haven’t been seen since the raids.
This pattern of attempted provocations mirror what we saw in the run up to the invasion of Iraq.
It quotes British Defense Secretary Geoff Hoon as saying that “the US had already begun ‘spikes of activity’ to put pressure on the regime.” This we now realize was Plan B [and apparently confirmed by Gen. Moseley’s comments mentioned above]. Put simply, US aircraft patrolling the southern no-fly zone were dropping a lot more bombs in the hope of provoking a reaction that would give the allies an excuse to carry out a full-scale bombing campaign, an air war, the first stage of the conflict. – The Christian Science Monitor via Globalsecurity.org
I also fear that the holding of the 15 British sailors will be the excuse that President Bush uses for launching and justifying his long planned attack against this leg of his axis of evil. Only time will tell for sure.