Australia must not be caught up in the drive to war against Iran

Photo from The Australian: Ddonlad Trump and Scott Morrison together at Osaka

Contributed by Joe Montero

Is Australia heading headlong into involvement in another war? This appears to be Scott Morrison’s ambition. Should Australia support or oppose this?

When as Australia’s Prime Minister he announced, just before flying out to the weekend’s G20 gathering in Japan, his eager support for the United State’s talk of action against Iran, he could hardly contain his eagerness to play tin soldier. He had a private dinner audience with the American president before the weekend.

Photo from the ABC: Scott Morrison at the private dinner with Donald Trump

Morrison had already been advocating the imposition of more severe sanctions on that country. By doing this, and in Osaka, opening up Australia for for more involvement in war for no good reason, is seriously irresponsible.

The Independent and Peaceful Australia Network (IPAN) has responded, and urges the Prime minister to take a step back and urgently reconsider.

IPAN believes US sanctions imposed on Iran is creating severe hardship for its people and a military option would create a huge humanitarian disaster. The group insists that the military option be ruled out altogether and the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) revived.

IPAN’s spokesperson, Mr Bevan Ramsden said;

“The JCPOA ), negotiated between Iran, France, Russia, China, The UK, Germany and the USA, endorsed by the UN Security Council and supported by Australia, was a peaceful solution to the problem of Iran’s nuclear ambitions.

“It’s unilateral ditching by the USA under President Trump, to the consternation of the other parties, precipitated the current crisis. The USA should be urged to return to the JCPOA, as the only way to resolve the matter peacefully.

“For Australia to join any military engagement would be the height of folly. War in the Persian Gulf would mean that the Straits of Hormuz would be closed. Insurance companies would not cover oil tankers in a war zone.

“Australia’s fuel supplies would be severely limited or cut off entirely – with disastrous consequences for the Australian economy and its people. Further, closing of the Straits, on top of the intensifying US-China trade war, would crash the global economy.

“This is a clear case where Australia’s and USA’s interests are diametrically opposed. It underlines the need for an independent foreign policy. Our fuel needs are too important to be placed in jeopardy by US military action.”

Scott Morrison’s public pronouncement has given a blank check for any sort of intervention, including military action. Whatever Donald Trump and the Pentagon decide to do, Australia will just follow and do so without question.

The latest crusade against Iran is tied up with the allegation of attacks on Saudi Arabia’s oil tankers.

Iran is also being accused of contravening JCPOA, where there was an agreement over Iran’s nuclear program and for cooperation.

No evidence has been provided to show that Iran is responsible for the Saudi attacks, Experts have ruled it out. Nor has evidence been presented that Iran has embarked on a major nuclear arms proliferation. And it was the United States that walked out of the JCPOA last year.

But the evidence is not being allowed to get in the way of a new weapons of mass destruction type story.

Remember. This is the sort of spin used to justify an invasion of Iraq. We all know now that this was a lie. The same method is being repeated to justify action against another country.

United States confrontation with Iran has a clear purpose.

Iran is not only rich in oil reserves. It has political clout in the Middle East and Persian Gulf, and opposes what it considers to be predatory involvement by the United States.

For example, it supports resistance in Iraq and supports the Syrian government’s efforts against Islamic State. Iran has also been an opponent of United States intervention in other places. Venezuela is one of them.

On the ground, the reality is that American political power is declining in the Middle East and Persian gulf. With the Intention to maintain a strong foothold in the region through diplomatic efforts prove less than successful, shifting towards increased reliance on the use of economic warfare and the threat of military attack becomes the main strategy.

This is what Scott Morrison is signing up Australia for.

Growing isolation for the United States is seen in the fact that very few countries support its effort. Even the European Union is against it, urging a re-think and reaching its own cooperative agreement with Iran.

An attempt is being made to hide this isolation, by using a handful of countries like Australia, prepared to do anything they are asked, because they lack the capacity to act independently.

Australia has a significant importance as leading cheerleader fore United states policy in the Asian and Pacific region. This applies to Iran. It also applies to China, Korea and other regional economic and political issues. And Australia is closely integrated into the the United States military machine, through a range of military installations on Australian soil, the growing presence of American troops and a an agreement that effectively gives American generals command over Australia’s armed forces.

It is in this context that Donald Trump has been invited to visit Melbourne in December as a public relations exercise. It is understood that preparations are already underway. Whether it will come off is another matter. Donald Trump’s coming could easily feed opposition among Australians. and this could be a diplomatic disaster. It is a question about whether Washington considers taking the risk worthwhile or not.

Scott Morrison has embarked on a dangerous course, Which is not in Australia’s best interests. Going down the road of the obedient servant, diminishes Australia deciding and acting as an independent nation.

Nor is it Scott Morrison’s stand in accord with world opinion. Worse. It is unjustifiable on any grounds and act as an independent nation and threatens pariah status in a civilised world.

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