Opinion | U.S.-Iran Tensions, and Fears of War

To the Editor:

Re “U.S. Is Building Case That Iran Hit Saudi Sites” (front page, Sept. 16):

First, President Trump pulled out of the nuclear deal with Iran, a deal that most people except Mr. Trump and his hawkish advisers believed Iran was complying with. Then, the president reinstated sanctions against Iran, trashing Iran’s economy. A series of actions against oil tankers followed.

Now Iran, or its proxy, may have struck Saudi oil facilities, presumably thinking that if Iran cannot sell its oil, neither can Saudi Arabia. President Trump proclaims that with respect to Iran, he is “locked and loaded.”

To respond to a crisis of his own making, he is swaggering his way into a war with Iran. Of course, this will make him a wartime leader, another Churchill, and Americans will support him, out of an abundance of patriotism and gullibility, and it could help him win the 2020 election. Certainly his Republican sycophants will support him completely.

Stephen Landers
Stratford, Ontario

To the Editor:

Can it really be, as President Trump tweeted this weekend, that we may stake our decision whether to strike Iran and court yet another war in the Persian Gulf on the verdict of “the Kingdom as to who they believe was the cause of this attack” on the Saudi oil facilities? When did the Saudi regime, which murdered and then denied murdering Jamal Khashoggi, become so trustworthy in forensic matters?

George Fisher
San Francisco

To the Editor:

Iran’s alleged drone attack is not what Secretary of State Mike Pompeo called “an unprecedented attack on the world’s energy supply.” The precedent has been set by the United States’ ongoing attack on Iran’s shipment of oil to the world market. That makes it all the more important for nations to heed the call of France’s president, Emmanuel Macron, for the crisis to be addressed when the United Nations General Assembly meets later this month.

Furthermore, the timing — just before elections in Israel — raises serious questions that need to be investigated before we find ourselves in another endless war.

Tom Miller
Oakland, Calif.

To the Editor:

The Trump administration is citing intelligence assessments to blame Iran for the drone attacks and as justification to attack Iran. The problem is that intelligence assessments were used by the Bush administration to attack and invade Iraq. Those assessments were lies! So it’s hard to know what to believe today.

Brant Thomas
Brooklyn

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