A Japanese tanker owner just blew a hole in Trump’s latest provocations against Iran

President Trump and his team have seized on the recent attacks against two oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman as an excuse to level serious accusations against the Islamic Republic of Iran and build the case for hostilities with America’s longtime rival, but once again their story doesn’t check out.

Yutaka Katada, the owner of one of the tankers which mysteriously exploded on Thursday morning, publicly challenged the Trump administration’s account of what happened on Friday morning in an interview with the Financial Times.

On Thursday, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo accused Iran of placing limpet mines on the tankers and framed the incident as “a clear threat to international peace and security, a blatant assault on the freedom of navigation, and an unacceptable campaign of escalating tensions by Iran.”

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The U.S. military followed that up on Friday by releasing what they say is a video of the Iranian military removing an unexploded mine from the side of Katada’s Kokuka Courageous. Iran has vehemently denied all involvement.

Katada told the media that his crew saw “flying objects” hit the boat, suggesting that it was some kind of missile or RPG and not a limpet mine, which would have been placed at the water level. “It seems that something flew towards them. That created the hole, is the report I’ve received. It seems there was a high chance they were attacked by a flying object. The impact was well above the water. I don’t think it was a torpedo.”

The entire affair stinks to high heaven. Perhaps this would all be more believable if the United States didn’t have a proven track record of using false flag attacks and concocting false evidence to provoke and justify devastating imperial wars. But given the fact that the Trump administration shamelessly lies about almost everything and the fact that National Security Advisor Bolton still has not produced the evidence he promised when he baselessly accused Iran of attacking shipping a month ago, we need to take this video with an entire barrel of salt.

Once you consider that the attack makes little to no strategic sense for Iran to commit, it is far more believable that once again far-right wing neocons in the American government are clumsily attempting to manufacture an excuse to demonize the Iranians and justify the catastrophic violence that men like John Bolton have been working towards for decades. 

Original reporting by Barbie Latza Nadeau at the Daily Beast.

Watch Yutaka Katada’s remarks here:

 

 

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Colin Taylor

Managing Editor

Colin Taylor is the managing editor of the Washington Press. He graduated from Bennington College with a Bachelor's degree in history and political science. He now focuses on advancing the cause of social justice, equality, and universal health care in America.


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