The adjourned war

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The worst seems to be averted: US President Trump shies away from a military confrontation with Tehran. The conflict is far from over – on the contrary.

After five days of thrill, US President Donald Trump stepped in front of the cameras in the White House to announce something like a ceasefire with Tehran: “Iran appears to be holding back.” In return, the United States is ready to “embrace peace”.

The appearance was Trump’s response to the Iranian airstrikes the night before. These, in turn, were an answer to the US killing of top general Qasem Soleimani on Friday.

So it rocked up until Trump took his foot off the gas again.

In the end, both sides shied away from the abyss. But what happened here? What does Trump achieve? Has the situation improved now? The official answers have so far been insufficient – and, as is so often the case, can only be used with caution.

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