Thursday, January 14, 2016

I Should Not Be Amazed at How Quickly the Republican Candidates Maxed Out My Bullshit Meter

Basically, as soon as they started talking. Cruz and Christie in particular got up a contest on how bellicose they could be about the "incident" in which ten US Navy sailors somehow ended up in Iranian custody. Why, this would never happen on their watch without the nuclear button being pressed, and so on and so forth.

I say again: Bullshit meter pinged.

Here's what you need to understand -- if you didn't already -- about this whole "incident."

No, the boats didn't experience bizarre mechanical and radio failures and just happen to drift not only into Iranian waters but to (probably) within sight of a key Iranian military facility.

Those sailors were special operations forces on an illicit mission into Iranian waters, and they got caught.

Often when this happens between regimes that are at odds with each other but at least somewhat trying to repair their relations, plausible deniability kicks in. Both sides publicly pretend it was an accident, the offending side apologizes for the allegedly inadvertent intrusion, and the other side goes along and magnanimously hands back over the captured troops and boats (or planes, or whatever).

Why? Because neither side wants to ratchet up tensions at the moment.

It's really just that simple.

And yes, I know whereof I speak. The main difference between those sailors and me is that the only time I ran a covert boat op, I got a meritorious mast for doing it well instead of publicly embarrassing the Marine Corps by getting caught.

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