Vijay Prashad: U.S. Rushes to Blame Iran for Tanker Attacks as Much of World Pushes for Diplomacy

June 14, 2019

ensions between the U.S. and Iran are again ratcheting up as the Trump administration accused Iran of orchestrating an attack Thursday on Japanese and Norwegian oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman. Iran denied any involvement and accused the Trump administration of trying to sabotage diplomacy. U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo directly accused Iran of attacking the oil tankers, and the U.S. released video of what it claimed was Iran’s Revolutionary Guard removing an unexploded mine from the side of the Japanese oil tanker that was attacked. However, the president of the Japanese company that owns the ship said it was not attacked by mines but two flying objects. He also said he doesn’t believe any objects were attached to the side of the ship. We speak with Vijay Prashad, director of Tricontinental: Institute for Social Research.

Transcript
This is a rush transcript. Copy may not be in its final form.

AMY GOODMAN: Tensions between the U.S. and Iran are again ratcheting up as the U.S. accused Iran of orchestrating an attack Thursday on Japanese and Norwegian oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman. Iran denied any involvement and accused the Trump administration of trying to sabotage diplomacy. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo directly accused Iran of attacking the oil tankers, just hours after the incident.

SECRETARY OF STATE MIKE POMPEO: It is the assessment of the United States government that the Islamic Republic of Iran is responsible for the attacks that occurred in the Gulf of Oman today. This assessment is based on intelligence, the weapons used, the level of expertise needed to execute the operation, recent similar Iranian attacks on shipping, and the fact that no proxy group operating in the area has the resources and proficiency to act with such a high degree of sophistication.

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