This GIF of three video images, of Iran's shootdown of a Ukrainian plane, shows a flash at the moment of explosion (darkest image), the plane engulfed, then the crash. Images: AP

The Iranian regime has miscalculated in three disastrous ways, leaving the Supreme Leader in a weaker position than 11 days ago.

Our thought bubble: Trump is taking a lot of flak globally and from Democrats. But at this moment, the Iranian regime is doing most of the suffering.

  1. "Death to America" protests on Dec. 31 breached security at the fortress-like U.S. embassy in Baghdad, and Trump tweeted: "Iran will be held fully responsible." Three day later, Iranians lost their most powerful military leader when a U.S. drone took out Qasem Soleimani.
  2. Iran promised "'forceful revenge." But ballistic missile strikes aimed at U.S. troops on two bases in Iraq killed no one. Trump then said: "Iran appears to be standing down."
  3. Iran lied about the mass murder of 176 people because a trigger-happy idiot shot down a civilian Ukrainian plane taking off from Tehran. The regime looks like dishonest incompetents on the global stage.

Go deeper... What we know: Ukrainian Boeing 737 crashes in Tehran

Go deeper

Dion Rabouin, author of Markets
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Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

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Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

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Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

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