‘When the Pentagon confirmed the assassination of Iranian Major General Qasem Soleimani, U.S. President Donald Trump took to social media to post a single image of the American flag to the adulation of his followers.
Unfortunately, most Americans are ignorant of the other flag synonymous with U.S. foreign policy, that of the ‘false flag’ utilized to deceive the public and stir up support for endless war abroad.
While the chicken hawk defenders of Trump’s reckless decision to murder one of the biggest contributors in the defeat of ISIS salivated over possible war with Iran, their appetite was spoiled by Tehran’s retaliatory precision strikes of two U.S. bases in Iraq that deliberately avoided casualties while in accordance with the Islamic Republic’s right to self-defense under Article 51 of the United Nations charter.
The reprisal successfully deescalated the crisis but sent a clear message Iran was willing to stand up to the U.S. with the backing of Russia and China, while Washington underestimated Tehran which forewarned the Iraqi government of its impending counterattack so U.S. personnel could evacuate.
In the hours following the ballistic missile strikes, reports came in that a Boeing 737 international passenger flight scheduled from Tehran to Kiev, Ukraine had crashed shortly after takeoff from Imam Khomeini International Airport, killing all 176 passengers and flight crew on board.
Initial video of the crash of Ukrainian International Airlines Flight 752 (PS752) showed that the aircraft was already in flames while descending to the ground, leading to speculation it was shot down amid the heightened political crisis between Iran and Washington. In the days following, a second obscure video surfaced which only increased this suspicion.
Meanwhile, Western governments quickly concluded that an anti-aircraft surface-to-air missile brought PS752 down and were eager to point the finger at Iran before any formal investigation. Many people, including this author, were admittedly skeptical as to how a plane taking off from Tehran could have been mistaken five hours after the strikes in Iraq.
Nevertheless, those with reservations turned out to be wrong when days later the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) came clean that its aerospace forces made a “human error” and accidentally shot the passenger plane down after mistaking it for a incoming cruise missile when it flew close to a military base during a heightened state of alert in anticipation of U.S. attack.
Many have noted that Iran’s honorable decision to take responsibility for the catastrophe is in sharp contrast with Washington’s response in 1988 when the U.S. Navy shot down Iran Air Flight 655 scheduled from Tehran to Dubai over the Strait of Hormuz in the Persian Gulf, killing all 290 occupants, after failing to cover it up.’