🇺🇸 Is Iran Involved?

Plus, the annual royal swan check-up.

The Flag

Good morning, and happy Thursday. A new vaccine from Oxford, called R21, has been shown to be not only effective for the prevention of malaria in children but also easier to mass produce and comes with a lower price tag.

Plus, a flock of swans that grew from a gift nearly 70 years ago from Queen Elizabeth II has been rounded up in Florida to ensure they are all healthy.

Also, to win a gold rush, invest in pick axes, not gold. Is the same true for the EV revolution?


Left: The Kamala Harris Problem Elaina Plott Calabro, The Atlantic

Right: Should Conservatives Play by the Rules? Frank DeVito, The American Conservative

Right: Biden’s WH Hostage to Ferocious Cadre of Radical Kids Spencer Klavan, The Spectator


Scalise Speakership Nomination, Santos Charged, Abortion Vote in Ohio

World: US in talks with countries including Israel and Egypt to allow safe passage of Americans and other civilians out of Gaza (CNN)

US: House Republicans choose Scalise as their candidate for speaker after McCarthy's ouster (FOX News)

US: GOP lawmakers introduce expulsion resolution against George Santos amid latest charges (Washington Examiner) + George Santos denies new federal charges, including credit card fraud, aggravated identity theft (CBS News)

US: White House plans to put Ukraine, Taiwan and border funding in its Israel request (NBC News)

US: Voting begins in Ohio in the only election this fall to decide abortion rights (AP)

World: Israel bombs south Lebanon after Hezbollah rocket fire (Reuters)


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Was Iran Involved?

As of this writing, US officials say there's no direct evidence linking Iran to the attacks in Israel. Meanwhile, some Middle East experts and Hamas officials have said Iran was involved. Iran and Hamas have been linked for years, and a 2021 report from the State Department detailed how Iran supplies Hamas with weapons and training.

Reporting from the Left: Hamas and Iran are longtime allies. Did Tehran help with its attack on Israel? (CNN)

Reporting from the Right: Israel war: Fact-checking White House talking points on Iran and Hamas (Washington Examiner)

From The Flag: It has been reported that American officials are investigating whether some of the Hamas militants who carried out the unprecedented attack received advanced training from Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, according to current and former US officials.

Here at The Flag, we want to reiterate that the following excerpts do not reflect the opinions or any position of The Flag or its affiliates. Additionally, we encourage our readers to exercise caution and not immediately accept everything that’s shared from these varied sources at face value, as they do include opinions and some unverified claims. With that said, here’s how both sides are covering the developing story.


Whether Iran Was Involved or Not, This Was a Win For Them

  • Some intelligence appears to show that Iran’s top officials were caught by surprise, but the intelligence community hasn't made a decisive conclusion on direct involvement one way or the other.

  • Iran and Saudi Arabia are again using Palestinians and the provocative narrative of occupation to further their own goals.

  • In response to Republican claims that President Biden funded the attacks, NSC spokesperson Adrienne Watson emphasized the funds given to Iran have not been used and condemned the disinformation.

Initial US intelligence suggests Iran was surprised by the Hamas attack on Israel Zachary Cohen et al., CNN: “The United States has collected specific intelligence that suggests senior Iranian government officials were caught by surprise by Saturday’s bloody attack on Israel by Hamas, according to multiple sources familiar with the intelligence. The existence of the intelligence has cast doubt on the idea that Iran was directly involved in the planning, resourcing or approving of the operation, sources said. The sources stressed that the US intelligence community is not ready to reach a full conclusion about whether Tehran was directly involved in the run-up to the attack. They continue to look for evidence of Iranian involvement, which caught both Israel and the United States by surprise. … the sources said that this intelligence – which has been briefed to lawmakers on Capitol Hill – has led US analysts to lean toward an initial assessment that the government of Iran did not play a direct role in the attack.

Neither Iran nor Saudi Arabia have the Palestinian people’s best interests at heart Nayyera Haq, MSNBC: “Neither Iran nor Saudi Arabia have the Palestinian people’s best interests at heart right now. Quite the opposite. As Israel masses troops around the Gaza Strip and begins a missile bombardment, Iran and Saudi Arabia are once again using Palestinians and the provocative narrative of occupation to further their own goals. Iran’s long-standing support for Hamas is a matter of self-interest. A Persian country with a Shia Muslim government, Iran has for decades used proxy organizations across the region to expand its tentacles. By helping to arm a violent organization that also chants death to Israel, Iran gains a foothold on the Mediterranean side of the Middle East, advancing multiple foreign policy objectives. The Iranian government is not truly pro-Palestinian, instead, it exists in opposition: The regime is antisemitic, anti-American, and anti-Sunni.

One more opinion piece from the Left: Republican Candidates Waste No Time Pinning the Hamas Attack on Biden, Madison Pauly


Iran Was Involved, and Biden Shares the Blame

  • A report from the Wall Street Journal alleges Iranian officials met with Hamas last week in Beirut, Lebanon, giving final approval for the details of the planned attack.

  • A spokesman for Hamas confirmed that they have received aid from Iran, and Biden is to blame for enabling Iran to fund terrorism further.

  • “Hamas is essentially a terrorist arm of the Tehran regime more than it is a representative of the Palestinian people,” which Biden bears responsibility for.

Iran Helped Plot Attack on Israel Over Several Weeks Summer Said et al., Washington Examiner: “Iranian security officials helped plan Hamas’s Saturday surprise attack on Israel and gave the green light for the assault at a meeting in Beirut last Monday, according to senior members of Hamas and Hezbollah, another Iran-backed militant group. Officers of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps had worked with Hamas since August to devise the air, land, and sea incursions—the most significant breach of Israel’s borders since the 1973 Yom Kippur War—those people said. Details of the operation were refined during several meetings in Beirut attended by IRGC officers and representatives of four Iran-backed militant groups, including Hamas, which holds power in Gaza, and Hezbollah, a Shiite militant group and political faction in Lebanon, they said. U.S. officials say they haven’t seen evidence of Tehran’s involvement.”

Hamas Confirms Iran Backed and Supported Surprise Attack on Israel Ari Blaff, National Review: “A spokesman for Hamas confirmed to the BBC that the terrorist group received aid from Iran. The invasion has been interpreted by many observers as an attempt to scuttle the ongoing peace talks between Israel, Saudi Arabia, and the wider Middle East. The revelation has led Republicans in both chambers to denounce the Biden administration for its ongoing talks with the Islamic Republic, including unfreezing $6 billion worth of Iranian assets in early August in exchange for five imprisoned Americans. … The revelation has led Republicans in both chambers to denounce the Biden administration for its ongoing talks with the Islamic Republic, including unfreezing $6 billion worth of Iranian assets in early August in exchange for five imprisoned Americans. … Republican presidential hopeful Senator Tim Scott (R., S.C.) went further, suggesting that the White House ‘didn’t just invite this aggression, we paid for it.’”

One more opinion piece from the Right: Biden's appeasement has encouraged Iran's terrorist agenda, Washington Examiner’s Editorial Board


Iran Overwhelmingly Unfavorable

For over three decades, Gallup has tracked American’s views of Iran. In 1989, 89% of respondents indicated they viewed Iran mostly or very unfavorably. Since then, that number has fluctuated but always remained above 79%. In 2023, 82% of respondents indicated they view Iran mostly or very unfavorably (Gallup).


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Corporal Doss receiving the Medal of Honor from President Harry S. Truman

On This Day in 1945: Private First Class Desmond T. Doss of Lynchburg, Virginia, is presented the Medal of Honor for outstanding bravery as a combat medic, the first conscientious objector in American history to receive the nation’s highest military award.

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