The Mad Man plays with fire, again


A Commentary on Trump’s Decision to Pull the U.S. out of the Iran Nuclear Deal


by Michael Pröbsting, International Secretary of the Revolutionary Communist International Tendency (RCIT), 9 May 2018,




The Mad Man did it, again. On 8 May, U.S. President Trump declared another international treaty dead. This time he announced that “that the United States will withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal”. Soon after his speech the White House issued a statement that the US president directed his "administration to immediately begin the process of re-imposing sanctions. (...) The re-imposed sanctions will target critical sectors of Iran’s economy, such as its energy, petrochemical, and financial sectors." (1)


It is hardly necessary at this place to explain the bizarre logic of Trump’s reasoning for his decision. Leaving aside fanatic war-mongers from the Zionist state a la Netanyahu and Lieberman, no sane person has claimed until now that Iran has violated the so-called Iran nuclear deal (also formally known as Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action). The International Atomic Energy Agency has repeatedly confirmed that Tehran has been meeting its nuclear commitments fully. Even official of the Trump Administration have to admit this.


In his speech, Trump claimed that “the Iranian regime is the leading state sponsor of terror. It exports dangerous missiles, fuels conflicts across the Middle East, and supports terrorist proxies and militias such as Hezbollah, Hamas, the Taliban and al-Qaeda. (2)


Surely, every supporter of the working class and oppressed liberation struggle despises the capitalist theocratic regime in Teheran and its reactionary war against the Syrian people as well as the workers and national minorities in its own country. (3)


But who is the world’s leading power to lecture others?! It has attacked countries around the world without any provocation – to name just Afghanistan and Iraq as the latest examples. It has slaughtered myriads of people and is responsible for the death of at least 1.2-1.4 million Iraqis since 2003. It has the largest arsenal of nuclear weapons and it has used them in the past!


Hamas is a terrorist organization? No, irrespective of our political opposition to this petty-bourgeois Islamist organization, it is Israel which barbarically oppresses, starves and kills the Palestinians while Hamas repeatedly stood at the top of just wars of defense.


Similarly in Afghanistan, where the U.S. forces are the barbarians who have brought disaster to the people while the Taliban, irrespective of our rejection of their political agenda, only defend their homeland.


It is a true reflection of the modest knowledge or the malicious mindset (or both) of the U.S. President when he claims that Iran is the sponsor of the Taliban and al-Qaeda. Could it be the case that Trump has never heard about deep sectarian hatred between Sunni and Shia political extremists? And are we wrong in assuming that Trump has never heard of the massive tensions between the Sunni Pashtun-based Taliban and the Shia-dominated Iran? Or about the war being waged by pro-Al Qaida forces in Syria against the Iranian occupation troops? Surely, Trump is someone who makes any farmer from Nebraska look like an enlightened man of the world!


However, the real problem is not the intellectual simple-mindedness of the U.S. President who can’t even articulate a complete sentence without a teleprompter and who most likely would have difficulties to identify the geographical location of Iran on a world map. Neither can this all be explained by Trumps numerous affairs with Porno stars, crooks, Cambridge Analytics, Russian, Israeli and other agencies, etc. Surely, Muellers ongoing investigation makes Trump desperately look for political hazards and military adventures in order to avoid impeachment.


But various liberals fail to recognize the inner logic of these events. To them, a world which is basically working well, appears to be put on risk by an idiot who entered the White House by accident. They are blind to the historic laws behind the ascent of Trump.


Friedrich Engels once remarked, when discussing the role of chance in history: Historical events thus appear on the whole to be likewise governed by chance. But wherever on the surface chance holds sway, it is always governed by inner, hidden laws and these laws only have to be discovered.” (4)


And indeed, Donald Dumb is only, albeit a Don Quichotte-like, agent of historical necessity. As the Revolutionary Communist International Tendency (RCIT) has explained in numerous books, pamphlets and statements, U.S. imperialism is in historic decline. New imperialist rivals, first and foremost Russia and China, are ascending. Russia’s domination in Syria and its growing influence in the Middle East as well as China’s economic and political expansion are unquestionable signs of this fundamental shift of the global power relations. (5)


This is why the U.S., Israel and Saudi Arabia are gung-ho to reverse their declining influence in the world and in particular in the Middle East. In order to counter this tendency, U.S. imperialism as well as smaller allied powers like Israel are fanatically determined to provoke tensions and wars. They are addicted to war and power and can not act differently.


We will see what the short-term consequences of Trump’s decision are. In this brief commentary we will not deal with this question in detail. However, the RCIT will publish soon a more comprehensive statement which will deal with the tactical consequences for the international workers movement and liberation forces.


But what we can say for sure already now is the following: the real meaning of Trump’s decision to withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal is not to provoke new negotiations. It is even not so much about imposing new economic sanctions against Iran. It is about creating a pretext for another military aggression in the Middle East.


In our recently published book about the world situation we have outlined more in detail the background and the inner contradictions of these developments. (6) We have predicted the inevitable escalation of the political and military tensions in the region.


However, at this point we will only repeat the important tactical conclusions resulting from our analysis. (7) The RCIT urges the workers and popular movements in the Middle East and globally to mobilize its forces on the following principles.


1.             They must oppose the aggressions of all imperialist powers – be it the U.S., Russia, Israel, China or France.


2.             They must defend semi-colonial countries (like Iran) and oppressed people against such Great Power aggressions while retaining their political opposition to those semi-colonial capitalist regimes.


3.             They must support all popular struggles and just wars of defense both against foreign aggressors as well as against domestic capitalist regimes (e.g. in Syria, Yemen, Iran, Egypt, etc.). This must not lead them to lend any political support to the forces at the top of such struggles.


4.             The crucial task for the vanguard of the working class and the liberation forces is to rally together and to build a Revolutionary World Party based on a Marxist program.


The RCIT calls all authentic revolutionary forces to join us in this struggle.






(1) Donald Trump declares US withdrawal from Iran nuclear deal, Al Jazeera, 2018-05-08,


(2) Transcript: Donald Trump's Iran nuclear deal speech in full, Al Jazeera, 2018-05-08


(3) See e.g. RCIT: Long Live the Popular Uprising in Iran! For Committees of Action of the Workers and Poor! For Organized Self-Defense against the Police Repression! Down with the Capitalist-Theocratic Regime! Unite the Struggle of the Iranian Masses with the Arab Revolution! 01.01.2018,; RCIT: For the Iranian Revolution! Down with the capitalist Mullah dictatorship! Down with Imperialism! For a working class revolution in Iran! Action Platform for Iran by the RCIT, February 2017,


(4) Friedrich Engels: Ludwig Feuerbach and the End of Classical German Philosophy; in: MECW 26, p. 387.


(5) See on this our book Michael Pröbsting: The Great Robbery Of The South. Continuity and Changes in the Super-Exploitation of the Semi-Colonial World by Monopoly Capital. Consequences for the Marxist Theory of Imperialism. See also the pamphlets and essays collected at this sub-section of our website:


(6) See chapter V of Michael Pröbsting: World Perspectives 2018: A World Pregnant with Wars and Popular Uprisings. February 2018,


(7) In addition to the above mentioned book on the world situation, we want to draw the readers’ attention in this context also to our recently published pamphlet Michael Pröbsting: Syria and Great Power Rivalry: The Failure of the „Left“. The bleeding Syrian Revolution and the recent Escalation of Inter-Imperialist Rivalry between the US and Russia – A Marxist Critique of Social Democracy, Stalinism and Centrism, 21 April 2018,