The Iranian Nuclear Fire Sends a Signal; New Biden VP Dark Horse
Author: Greg Valliere
July 7, 2020
ISRAEL FLEXES ITS MUSCLES: Before seizing more of the West Bank, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanayhu has sent a signal to his major adversary. Intelligence sources think the Israelis were responsible for the explosion at Iran’s facility near Natanz that was enriching uranium.
“CLEARLY, WE CAN’T GET INTO THAT,” Netanayhu said, when asked about the fire last week at the facility. There also was a mysterious explosion late last month near a missile facility southeast of Tehran. Iranian authorities said that blast was caused by a gas tank explosion in a military complex. On Saturday, another fire broke out at a power plant in the southwest.
IRAN VOWED TO REBUILD the Natanz facility, but that will take many months. In the meantime, Tehran’s enemies in the Mideast, including Saudi Arabia, are bracing for cyberwarfare and incidents in the Persian Gulf.
BUT THE MESSAGE SEEMS CLEAR: If Iran unleashes its proxies, primarily Hezbollah, after an Israeli move in the West Bank, the Israelis are prepared to strike again. As with many hot spots in the world, the U.S. no longer is a major player; Israel is fully prepared to do the heavy lifting as the West Bank becomes a major issue later this summer.
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BIDEN EYES VP MATE: There’s three or four weeks to go before Joe Biden announces his VP pick, and it appears that Kamala Harris may not be a shoo-in after all. Biden’s team would prefer a non-white running mate, so does that mean they could choose an Asian candidate?
A NEW WILD CARD HAS EMERGED: Tammy Duckworth, a center-left senator from Illinois, is suddenly on the short list. Raised in poverty, she joined the Army and became a Blackhawk helicopter pilot; she was shot down in the Iraq war and lost both of her legs. Her mother is Thai-Chinese.
DUCKWORTH HAS BEEN SCATHING toward “heel spurs Trump,” as she often refers to the president, and she has the foreign policy chops that Biden needs on the ticket. Duckworth has been thoroughly vetted and we think she’s now in the Top Three — Harris is first and Rep. Val Demings is second, largely because she was a highly regarded police chief and can refute charges that the Democrats are soft on crime.
DUCKWORTH WOULDN’T HELP in the Electoral College math; Biden is sure to win Illinois. Demings, on the other hand, could help a bit in Florida, which suddenly looks very competitive. But a tough-as-nails PhD war hero would bring a remarkable narrative to the race, and Duckworth has become a favorite among insiders in the Biden campaign.
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