America’s $1 Trillion Target Barge

The NYT has a story about a mock US aircraft carrier Iran is building, its sources say, so Iran can blow it up for the propaganda value.

Iran is building a nonworking mock-up of an American nuclear-powered aircraft carrier that United States officials say may be intended to be blown up for propaganda value.

This has set off chatter about how weird and dumb Iran is for building this giant toy boat, which US sources call the Target Barge.

But pretty soon after I started reading the article I found myself applying the phrases in it to America’s F-35 program which, in many ways, is an even bigger propaganda prop. See how it looks when you swap out Iran’s barge for the F-35?

Intelligence officials do not believe that the US is capable of building an actual F-35.

“Based on our observations, this is not a functioning plane; it’s a large spending program built to look like an plane,” said Cmdr. Jason Salata, a spokesman for the Navy’s Fifth Fleet in Bahrain, across the Persian Gulf from Lockheed. “We’re not sure what the US hopes to gain by building this. If it is a big propaganda piece, to what end?”

[snip]

“It is not surprising that American military forces might use a variety of tactics — including military deception tactics — to strategically communicate and possibly demonstrate their resolve in air power,” said a Chinese official who has closely followed the construction of the F-35.

[snip]

[T]he Pentagon has taken no steps to cloak from prying Chinese hackers what it is building in pork-laden building sites across several countries. “The system is often too opaque to understand who hatched this idea, and whether it was endorsed at the highest levels,” said Karim Sadjadpour, an American expert at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.

See what I mean?

Opacity of purpose.

Failure to provide adequate security.

Probable impossibility to bring to completion.

Abundant propaganda.

I’m not all that sure what distinguishes the F-35 except the cost: Surely Iran hasn’t spent the equivalent of a trillion dollars — which is what we’ll spend on the F-35 when it’s all said and done — to build its fake boat.

So which country is crazier: Iran, for building a fake boat, or the US for funding a never-ending jet program?

Tweet about this on TwitterShare on Reddit0Share on Facebook0Google+3Email to someone

8 Responses to America’s $1 Trillion Target Barge

Emptywheel Twitterverse
bmaz @davidminpdx Talk to @teddysanfran (Who is now really TeddyPortland)
4hreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz @MiracMagntism Absolutely, but most of ones from the right that will come already are. Don't dispirit left by trying harder to please right.
5hreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz @SunsetGunShot Yeah, but I kind of like the premise!
5hreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz Hillary is more concerned with swimming right than left and here are the @Democrats doing what they do https://t.co/ppBJe088OP
6hreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz RT @GinnyLaRoe: some sad truth right here https://t.co/hT9diSEB3N
6hreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz RT @dannowicki: The Arizona Republic's Steve Benson on @realDonaldTrump's call for GOP unity. More cartoons: https://t.co/pslz4r1IZF https:…
6hreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel @superwuster I studied 19th C stuff that was called camp-before-its-time. And he snots always said no, it can't be good before camp is cool
7hreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel @superwuster No. They're usually only good in a camp sense.
7hreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel @margibb I was a civ kid! Tho so late in the Duck and Cover era it was mostly rote performance.
7hreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz Hey @ryanlcooper you picked a fine day to connect to Verizon https://t.co/ksNjRurhic
7hreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz RT @billmon1: I thought by now Clintons understood that they (and Wall Street Dem backers) ARE the Rockefeller Republicans. https://t.co/V
7hreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz @ddayen Yeah, well if you make it to Phoenix, call #Grumpr
7hreplyretweetfavorite
March 2014
S M T W T F S
« Feb   Apr »
 1
2345678
9101112131415
16171819202122
23242526272829
3031