Category Archives: Iran

Trump is bringing peace to the Middle East, and the Democrats Seem To Hate It….

Trump is bringing peace to the Middle East, and the Democrats are not impressed

By Andrea Widburg

On Tuesday, President Trump welcomed to the White House Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the foreign ministers representing the UAE and Bahrain. They gathered there to sign the Abraham Accord, a history-making agreement that sees two Muslim nations formally normalize their relationship with the world’s only Jewish state. Trump also hinted that several more Muslim countries would follow, including Saudi Arabia. Trump is doing what everyone said was impossible: Bringing peace to the Middle East. Democrats, however, responded by downplaying and attacking the agreement.

The participants were excited because they recognized that they are the first in a cascade of peace agreements that coming. By sidelining the Palestinians, Trump was able to make the UAE and Bahrain – and will be able to make other Sunni states – see that a relationship with Israel is beneficial for them. The UAE isn’t hiding its pleasure with the new status quo:

 

SEE ENTIRE ARTICLE HERE

 

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A few highlights from the draft 2020 Democrat Party Platform

The Democrats released a draft version of their 2020 platform. These are just a few highlights (or lowlights) from this 80-page racist, Marxist disaster.

The draft platform is an 80-page-long, singe-spaced document. It’s very repetitive, repeating the same facts to make different points. It is as hard left as a document can be. It is communism without the bother of a full-scale revolution first. Democrats clearly hope that a few revolutionary battles in a few city streets will be sufficient to scare Americans into voting for them without bringing out the guillotine first.

I don’t have time for a deep dive. This is a shallow dive.

Whose recession? As a general irritant, the document refers to “Trump’s recession.” The reality is that Trump gave us one of the strongest economies ever in American history. It was the Democrats’ lockdowns, followed by the Democrats’ riots, followed by more Democrat lockdowns, that damaged the economy. The only reason people aren’t in worse shape is because of the strong Trump economy, which gave us some resiliency.

Hypocrisy about reparations. On its first page, the document has an acknowledgment that America is built on land once held by Native Americans:

The Democratic National Committee wishes to acknowledge that we gather together to state our values on lands that have been stewarded through many centuries by the ancestors and descendants of Tribal Nations who have been here since time immemorial. We honor the communities native to this continent, and recognize that our country was built on Indigenous homelands. We pay our respects to the millions of Indigenous people throughout history who have protected our lands, waters, and animals.

Under the rules of reparations as set out by the Democrat party, every Democrat in America has a moral obligation, if he or she owns land, to donate it the descendants of the Native Americans from whom it was taken. Those Democrats who do not do so are low-down, dirty, lying hypocrites.

Despite lip service to Israel, this is not a pro-Israel document. The Democrats say that they want a strong Israel that has the right to defend itself. They promise to abide by the 2016 Memorandum of Understanding (“MOU”), which sounds very Israel friendly. It’s not.

First, the MOU was something America forced on Israel so that Israel could continue to buy the weapons it needs against the genocidal nations surrounding it. The agreement makes it impossible for Israel to buy weapons from places other than America, including buying weapons from itself.

The foreign aid dollar amount in the agreement includes the cost of missile defense — but the missile defense amount is dependent on Congress. A hostile Congress will leave Israel without a defense against Iran, Hamas, and Hezbollah. The flip side of that is that the MOU bans Israel from asking Congress for extra money, which means it has no flexibility.

Thankfully, Israel has turned herself into an extremely well-trained porcupine, bristling with weapons. However, the agreement places shackles around her that make it very difficult for her to augment her defenses in times of need.

In addition, while professing its love for Israel and (to its credit) saying it will not countenance either the Boycott, Divest, & Sanction movement or the UN’s incessant Israel-targeting, the Democrat party has a few other tricks up its sleeve. It continues to be invested in the two-state solution, which is a meaningless dead end. Israel pulled out of Gaza and all she ended up with was a terrorist state on her border.

And then there’s this a sneaky clause, right in front of saying that Jerusalem should remain Israel’s capital. That clause reads, “We believe that while Jerusalem is a matter for final status negotiations….” No, it’s not. Jerusalem is Israel’s capital. “Final status negotiations” only means that the Democrats will push to divide the City. We know what happens if any part of the city goes to the Palestinians: They will make it Judenrein and will destroy all signs of Jewish presence, historic or current.

Finally, Trump stopped sending “pay-to-slay” money to the Palestinians. Democrats intend to reinstate it.

The Mideast policy isn’t any better. As a general matter, the Democrats’ Middle East plan attempts to turn the clock back to the Obama era. They plan to reinstate the Iran Agreement. This would be terrible, especially considering that Trump has seriously weakened the mullahs who terrorize their own people. It also puts Israel right back in the nuclear crosshairs. Israel has bought itself time with the sabotage all over Iran, but that’s just a year of breathing space.

Shorn of anti-Trump rhetoric, the policy regarding ISIS is Trump’s policy: a small, agile force that can police those sadists as necessary.

The Democrats are obsessed with race and sexual habits. I view Americans as a single people. Ideally, we all want safety, prosperity, and liberty. Democrats, however, see Americans as little nodules of interest. Here’s just a sampling of the pandering to all sorts of different interest groups (a lot of which involves marginalizing less melanized people):

America bills itself as the land of opportunity, but intergenerational mobility has plummeted; children born in the United States are less likely to move up the income ladder than those in Canada, Denmark, or the United Kingdom. Women still earn just 82 cents to every dollar men earn, with even greater disparities for women of color. Median incomes are lower and poverty rates are higher for Black Americans, Latinos, Native Americans, and some Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders, compared to median white households. And there is a persistent, pernicious racial wealth gap that holds millions of Americans back, with the typical white household holding six times more wealth than the typical Latino family and 10 times more wealth than the typical Black family.

Democrats aren’t going to help wealth creation in America. They’re going to have spreadsheets and make sure that only the right people (i.e., non-whites) benefit from a Democrat-run administration. And note the reliance on the canard that women earn less than men because of discrimination. It’s illegal to pay women less for the same work. Women learn less because they gravitate to lower-paying jobs, something that’s often connected with children. They want flex time or, in many cases, they take years or decades off from the job market to raise their children.

Democrats know, though, that it’s all about the racism — which can only be fixed with more racism:

We cannot hope to raise wages without taking on the profound racial biases at work in our employment system. The wage gap between Black workers and white workers is higher today than it was 20 years ago. It takes a typical Black woman 19 months to earn what a typical white man earns in 12 months—and for typical Latinas and Native American women, it takes almost two years. Democrats believe we need to be much more proactive and aggressive in rooting out discrimination in our employment system. We will increase funding to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and increase its authority to initiate directed investigations into civil rights violations and violations of the rights of people with disabilities. Federal contractors should be required to develop and disclose plans to recruit and promote people of color, women, people with disabilities, and veterans—and be held accountable for delivering.

Democrats also demand equality by refusing to recognize that we’re all humans. If you’re really all about equality, all you have to say is that every American deserves and will get equal justice under the law and equal opportunities. End of story. Instead, the Democrats insist on dividing us into useful political victim groups.

Democrats will protect and promote the equal rights of all our citizens—women, LGBTQ+ people, religious minorities, people with disabilities, Native Americans, and all who have been discriminated against in too many ways and for too many generations. We commit ourselves to the vision articulated by Frederick Douglass of “a Government founded upon justice, and recognizing the equal rights of all.”

The same dividing people by race stuff shows up over and over, regarding health care policies, “racial justice and equity,” education, the military, terrorism, and pandemics. And always — ALWAYS — the narrative is that whites are getting more than their fair share and that only government action can create (i.e., force) equality.

It’s a frightening document that blames one race for another’s suffering. Other governments have used the same tactic and it never ends well.

Climate change. Democrats continue to use climate change as a reason to redistribute wealth within America and then to redistribute America’s wealth around the world. The first thing they plan to do is rejoin the Paris Climate Agreement, which shackled America while giving China unfettered pollution rights.

Considering that China is responsible for the biggest amount of plastics in the oceans and is responsible for a significant part of pollution in the air, rejoining the Paris Climate Agreement is a huge gift to a government that terrorizes its people, enslaves its people, commits genocide against its people, is attempting to colonize all of Asia, commits massive financial and industrial espionage around the world, and gave us the gift of the Wuhan virus. China certainly got what it paid for when it bought the Democrats, from Biden on down.

Speaking of China. The Democrats want a reset, bringing our relationship with China back to the way it was during the Biden years: China undercuts us in trade through unfair means, pollutes the air, and steals our intellectual property.

Unions. Let’s just say that the Democrats have lots of goodies for unions. Lots and lots of goodies. Incredible amounts of goodies. Of course, the unions might want to think about the fact that the treats of China will do away with union jobs. In addition, if the Democrats continue to keep schools closed, that will end the teacher’s unions. Police officers’ unions are already figuring out that they’re safer with Trump than they are with the Democrats.

I’ve got to work now so I’ll stop. Overall, the document is 80 pages of racial division, economic destruction, increased worldwide air pollution, brown-nosing China, and helping to nuclearize Iran. If Americans vote for this, the America we know now is gone forever. It remains to be seen whether Americans will like the ZimbabVenezCuba that raises in its place.

A few highlights from the draft 2020 Democrat Party Platform

The Democrats released a draft version of their 2020 platform. These are just a few highlights (or lowlights) from this 80-page racist, Marxist disaster.

The draft platform is an 80-page-long, singe-spaced document. It’s very repetitive, repeating the same facts to make different points. It is as hard left as a document can be. It is communism without the bother of a full-scale revolution first. Democrats clearly hope that a few revolutionary battles in a few city streets will be sufficient to scare Americans into voting for them without bringing out the guillotine first.

I don’t have time for a deep dive. This is a shallow dive.

Whose recession? As a general irritant, the document refers to “Trump’s recession.” The reality is that Trump gave us one of the strongest economies ever in American history. It was the Democrats’ lockdowns, followed by the Democrats’ riots, followed by more Democrat lockdowns, that damaged the economy. The only reason people aren’t in worse shape is because of the strong Trump economy, which gave us some resiliency.

Hypocrisy about reparations. On its first page, the document has an acknowledgment that America is built on land once held by Native Americans:

The Democratic National Committee wishes to acknowledge that we gather together to state our values on lands that have been stewarded through many centuries by the ancestors and descendants of Tribal Nations who have been here since time immemorial. We honor the communities native to this continent, and recognize that our country was built on Indigenous homelands. We pay our respects to the millions of Indigenous people throughout history who have protected our lands, waters, and animals.

Under the rules of reparations as set out by the Democrat party, every Democrat in America has a moral obligation, if he or she owns land, to donate it the descendants of the Native Americans from whom it was taken. Those Democrats who do not do so are low-down, dirty, lying hypocrites.

Despite lip service to Israel, this is not a pro-Israel document. The Democrats say that they want a strong Israel that has the right to defend itself. They promise to abide by the 2016 Memorandum of Understanding (“MOU”), which sounds very Israel friendly. It’s not.

First, the MOU was something America forced on Israel so that Israel could continue to buy the weapons it needs against the genocidal nations surrounding it. The agreement makes it impossible for Israel to buy weapons from places other than America, including buying weapons from itself.

The foreign aid dollar amount in the agreement includes the cost of missile defense — but the missile defense amount is dependent on Congress. A hostile Congress will leave Israel without a defense against Iran, Hamas, and Hezbollah. The flip side of that is that the MOU bans Israel from asking Congress for extra money, which means it has no flexibility.

Thankfully, Israel has turned herself into an extremely well-trained porcupine, bristling with weapons. However, the agreement places shackles around her that make it very difficult for her to augment her defenses in times of need.

In addition, while professing its love for Israel and (to its credit) saying it will not countenance either the Boycott, Divest, & Sanction movement or the UN’s incessant Israel-targeting, the Democrat party has a few other tricks up its sleeve. It continues to be invested in the two-state solution, which is a meaningless dead end. Israel pulled out of Gaza and all she ended up with was a terrorist state on her border.

And then there’s this a sneaky clause, right in front of saying that Jerusalem should remain Israel’s capital. That clause reads, “We believe that while Jerusalem is a matter for final status negotiations….” No, it’s not. Jerusalem is Israel’s capital. “Final status negotiations” only means that the Democrats will push to divide the City. We know what happens if any part of the city goes to the Palestinians: They will make it Judenrein and will destroy all signs of Jewish presence, historic or current.

Finally, Trump stopped sending “pay-to-slay” money to the Palestinians. Democrats intend to reinstate it.

The Mideast policy isn’t any better. As a general matter, the Democrats’ Middle East plan attempts to turn the clock back to the Obama era. They plan to reinstate the Iran Agreement. This would be terrible, especially considering that Trump has seriously weakened the mullahs who terrorize their own people. It also puts Israel right back in the nuclear crosshairs. Israel has bought itself time with the sabotage all over Iran, but that’s just a year of breathing space.

Shorn of anti-Trump rhetoric, the policy regarding ISIS is Trump’s policy: a small, agile force that can police those sadists as necessary.

The Democrats are obsessed with race and sexual habits. I view Americans as a single people. Ideally, we all want safety, prosperity, and liberty. Democrats, however, see Americans as little nodules of interest. Here’s just a sampling of the pandering to all sorts of different interest groups (a lot of which involves marginalizing less melanized people):

America bills itself as the land of opportunity, but intergenerational mobility has plummeted; children born in the United States are less likely to move up the income ladder than those in Canada, Denmark, or the United Kingdom. Women still earn just 82 cents to every dollar men earn, with even greater disparities for women of color. Median incomes are lower and poverty rates are higher for Black Americans, Latinos, Native Americans, and some Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders, compared to median white households. And there is a persistent, pernicious racial wealth gap that holds millions of Americans back, with the typical white household holding six times more wealth than the typical Latino family and 10 times more wealth than the typical Black family.

Democrats aren’t going to help wealth creation in America. They’re going to have spreadsheets and make sure that only the right people (i.e., non-whites) benefit from a Democrat-run administration. And note the reliance on the canard that women earn less than men because of discrimination. It’s illegal to pay women less for the same work. Women learn less because they gravitate to lower-paying jobs, something that’s often connected with children. They want flex time or, in many cases, they take years or decades off from the job market to raise their children.

Democrats know, though, that it’s all about the racism — which can only be fixed with more racism:

We cannot hope to raise wages without taking on the profound racial biases at work in our employment system. The wage gap between Black workers and white workers is higher today than it was 20 years ago. It takes a typical Black woman 19 months to earn what a typical white man earns in 12 months—and for typical Latinas and Native American women, it takes almost two years. Democrats believe we need to be much more proactive and aggressive in rooting out discrimination in our employment system. We will increase funding to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and increase its authority to initiate directed investigations into civil rights violations and violations of the rights of people with disabilities. Federal contractors should be required to develop and disclose plans to recruit and promote people of color, women, people with disabilities, and veterans—and be held accountable for delivering.

Democrats also demand equality by refusing to recognize that we’re all humans. If you’re really all about equality, all you have to say is that every American deserves and will get equal justice under the law and equal opportunities. End of story. Instead, the Democrats insist on dividing us into useful political victim groups.

Democrats will protect and promote the equal rights of all our citizens—women, LGBTQ+ people, religious minorities, people with disabilities, Native Americans, and all who have been discriminated against in too many ways and for too many generations. We commit ourselves to the vision articulated by Frederick Douglass of “a Government founded upon justice, and recognizing the equal rights of all.”

The same dividing people by race stuff shows up over and over, regarding health care policies, “racial justice and equity,” education, the military, terrorism, and pandemics. And always — ALWAYS — the narrative is that whites are getting more than their fair share and that only government action can create (i.e., force) equality.

It’s a frightening document that blames one race for another’s suffering. Other governments have used the same tactic and it never ends well.

Climate change. Democrats continue to use climate change as a reason to redistribute wealth within America and then to redistribute America’s wealth around the world. The first thing they plan to do is rejoin the Paris Climate Agreement, which shackled America while giving China unfettered pollution rights.

Considering that China is responsible for the biggest amount of plastics in the oceans and is responsible for a significant part of pollution in the air, rejoining the Paris Climate Agreement is a huge gift to a government that terrorizes its people, enslaves its people, commits genocide against its people, is attempting to colonize all of Asia, commits massive financial and industrial espionage around the world, and gave us the gift of the Wuhan virus. China certainly got what it paid for when it bought the Democrats, from Biden on down.

Speaking of China. The Democrats want a reset, bringing our relationship with China back to the way it was during the Biden years: China undercuts us in trade through unfair means, pollutes the air, and steals our intellectual property.

Unions. Let’s just say that the Democrats have lots of goodies for unions. Lots and lots of goodies. Incredible amounts of goodies. Of course, the unions might want to think about the fact that the treats of China will do away with union jobs. In addition, if the Democrats continue to keep schools closed, that will end the teacher’s unions. Police officers’ unions are already figuring out that they’re safer with Trump than they are with the Democrats.

I’ve got to work now so I’ll stop. Overall, the document is 80 pages of racial division, economic destruction, increased worldwide air pollution, brown-nosing China, and helping to nuclearize Iran. If Americans vote for this, the America we know now is gone forever. It remains to be seen whether Americans will like the ZimbabVenezCuba that raises in its place.

Further thoughts about the situation in Iran

I continue to believe that Trump did the right thing vis-a-vis Iran by killing Soleimani, the terrorist, and these are a few random thoughts to explain why.

At a base, reflexive level, I’ve gotten to the point at which anything the Democrats are against, I’m for. If they think we should continue our 41-year-long policy of appeasing Iran . . . well, they’re wrong. They’re wrong, first, because they’re Democrats who are living in a peculiar kingdom equally compounded of Marxism and Insanity, and they’re wrong, second, because appeasement doesn’t work.

To those Democrats (and some NeverTrumpers) who say that it’s warmongering if we abandon the delicate dance we’ve been doing with Iran for almost 42 years, a dance in which they take the lead, flinging us dangerously around the room while we desperately try to keep up then I’m a warmonger. But I’m a very specific type of warmonger.

I’m an anti-war warmonger. That is, I’m anti-war in precisely the same way Churchill was in the 1930s when he urged strong and immediate action, including military action, to stop Hitler before the latter was able to amass too much power. Had everyone been as anti-war as Churchill was — which means identifying and neutralizing tyrannical bullies early — 40 million people would not have died.

Not only is Iran a bully, it’s a very clever bully, for it has worked on American fears (for the American political class has never recovered from 1979) and politics (see above, about Democrats) to hide the fact that, while it has chutzpah and blood lust, it lacks actual military strength.

On the one hand, Trump (no doubt recognizing the coming conflict) has taken myriad steps in just 3 years to help the military recover from Obama’s depredations. On the other hand, Iran, despite using American funds to ratchet up its ballistic missiles and its extra-territorial proxies, doesn’t have much of an army. Outside of the Revolutionary Guard, it’s in bad shape (and I’ve heard that most of its many “ships” are just motor boats). As a reminder:

On the issue of proportionality, let me refer you to Wolf Howling’s post on the subject.

Once you get past the Democrat howls about proportionality, assassination, and “poor Iran,” and look at their more somber pronouncements about Trump’s strike at Soleimani, you discover the more thoughtful people are wrong too. Take, for example, an opinion piece at the New York Times, entitled “American Foreign Policy is Broken. Suleimani’s Killing Proves It.”

The author is Jonathan Stevenson, identified as a “senior fellow at the International Institute for Strategic Studies.” In other words, he is a spokesman for the same foreign policy establishment that has, for 41 years, told Americans just to suck up any Iranian provocation, anywhere on the globe, because Iran is scary.

After agreeing that Soleimani was a bad guy, Stevenson then says, predictably enough, “Iran is scary.” To support this, points to Bush and Obama, both of whom left us with catastrophic foreign messes, and both of whom decided not to kill Soleimani when they had the chance. They made this decision, which Stevenson believes was the correct one, because they consulted the “experts.” He then methodically works through the opinions Trump would have gotten had he spent days and weeks consulting with various agencies, as both Bush and Obama did.

Stevenson is certain that, had Trump spoken to the D.C. echo chamber, all of its experts would have told him just to hold steady on the course. This course would include abiding by Obama’s decision to turn over billions of American dollars to fund Iran’s nuclear ambitions in the hope that, because we paid for the nuclear bombs, Iran would eventually opt not to use them on us.

Summing up Stevenson’s gripe with Trump’s decision, the pure and proper Leftist advice is do the same thing we’ve been doing for 42 years (only with more verve, stupidity, and taxpayer money) and hope for a different outcome. If I have to choose between advice from the D.C. Swamp and Churchill (“an appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile, hoping it will eat him last”), I’m going with Churchill every time.

Moving on to another subject, with the earthquakes near Iran’s reactor, it would be ironic, wouldn’t it, if Iran were accidentally to nuke itself? Likewise, I would not be surprised at all to learn that Iran accidentally shot down the Ukrainian plane when someone panicked and thought it was an American retaliation for last night’s strikes against the military bases in Iraq. This would help explain why Iran is refusing to give the black box to Boeing for its examination.

In a viral video, an Iranian-American woman finds disgusting the Leftist tears for Soleimani. After explaining briefly just how bad he was, she says that people all over the Middle East are celebrating that killer’s death:

Lastly, I’ll refer everyone to my annual Passover post. I believe that the message of the Passover story extends beyond the obvious one of God liberating the Jews from slavery. Instead, I believe that the ten plagues — each worse than the other and all visiting terrible horrors on the Egyptian people — are to remind us that tyrants do not care about their people. They care only about their power.

No matter how the people groan and cry in the streets, as long as the people do not threaten the tyrant’s power, he is content with their suffering. The tyrant will only act when he is personally threatened, as was the case with the killing of the first born. Trump, by taking down Iran’s second most powerful person, has truly threatened the Iranian tyrant.

The post Further thoughts about the situation in Iran appeared first on Watcher of Weasels.

Trump has shown true leadership with events in Iraq

Trump’s brilliant targeted strike against one of the world’s most evil men, while it offended the Left, may help bring down the Mullahs’ rule in Iran.

So, let’s have a brief rundown, shall we?

On December 27, a rocket attack on an Iraqi military base in Kirkuk, Northern Iraq, killed an American contractor and wounded several others, both American troops and Iraqis. For those who, like me, are a little unclear on the specific geography in that region, Kirkuk is about 200 km from the Iranian border.

By the weekend, the U.S. was so certain that Kataeb Hezbollah, an Iranian-backed militia group operating in Iraq, was behind the airstrike that it mounted a counter strike. The military did precision strikes against five Kataeb Hezbollah sites, killing around 25 militia members.

In response, on December 31, Kataeb Hezbollah attacked the U.S. embassy in Baghdad. The pro-Iran mainstream media tried to report the event as a “protest” by “mourners,” but the reality was that it was a targeted strike on the embassy, along the lines of the Benghazi consulate attack in 2012 that left 4 Americans dead. Incidentally, one of the Benghazi attack’s planners was Qassem Suleimani, the head of Iran’s dreaded Quds Force. Does that name sound familiar? If it doesn’t now, it will by the end of this post.

Just to be sure that everyone knew exactly what kind of an attack it was, the militia members raging against the embassy building left a calling card: They painted around the window the fact that they were loyal to (here’s that name again) Qassem Suleimani (see image at the top of this post).

Unlike Obama’s response to Benghazi, which was to let events unfold without making any effort to step in, Trump responded forcefully to the attack on the embassy. Within a short time, the militia members were dispatched, the embassy was secure, and all Americans were safe.

Initially, Leftists were very excited about the whole Baghdad attack, calling it “Trump’s Benghazi.” As young people say, that was a self-own, because in their rush to condemn Trump, Leftists finally admitted that Obama’s response to Benghazi was execrable. Trump’s success in safely and overwhelmingly quashing the attack should have had the Leftists eating crow. That, however, implies a conscience, so. . . .

What Trump was very cognizant of, and this is something I think too many Westerners forget, is that an attack on an embassy is not just an attack on a building and the people inside. An embassy is an official part of the country it represents. If you are on American embassy soil, no matter where the embassy is located, you are in America. Both the Kateab Hezbollah militia fighters and Trump fully understood that Iran, through a proxy, had just attacked America, much as it did in 1979.

Trump promised forceful retribution. When he made that promise, most remembered that, when word emerged that Bashar al-Assad might use gas against civilians, Obama also promised retribution:

However, when al-Assad finally used chemical weapons against civilians, Obama suddenly discovered his inner Roseanne Rosannadanna and said “Never mind.” It was more important to  him to close a deal with Iran, giving the Iranians everything, including cash, in exchange for nothing, than it was to make good on his word.

Iran, assumed that Trump, like Obama, would be a paper tiger and issued ferocious warnings against any reprisal for the embassy raid. Trump, however, is no paper tiger. Not only did Trump follow through on his retribution promise, he did it in a big way.

What happened yesterday was not a pin point strike against an aspirin factory. Instead, Trump beheaded the head of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps’ Quds Force. It’s hard to think of an analogy for this. Maybe it’s like killing the head of all American special forces. It’s important to understand, though, that Suleimani wasn’t just a bureaucrat. He was the active mastermind behind terrorist strikes all over the Middle East (see the point about Benghazi, above).

Again, Trump had something to say on the matter:

….of PROTESTERS killed in Iran itself. While Iran will never be able to properly admit it, Soleimani was both hated and feared within the country. They are not nearly as saddened as the leaders will let the outside world believe. He should have been taken out many years ago!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 3, 2020

Suleimani wasn’t just killing Americans. He was killing everyone. No wonder, then, that when word got out that Suleimani was dead, Iraqis started rejoicing in the streets:

Iraqis — Iraqis — dancing in the street for freedom; thankful that General Soleimani is no more. pic.twitter.com/huFcae3ap4

— Secretary Pompeo (@SecPompeo) January 3, 2020

So with Suleimani’s death, a lot of people are happy: Iranians tortured and killed by Suleimani’s secret Quds force. American troops killed by Suleimani’s military strikes. Iraqis subject to Suleimani’s military strikes. Israelis in the shadow of Suleimani’s preeminent role in Iran’s existential threats to Israel.

There was one group, however, that wasn’t happy and that would be the American Democrat party, whether in the political sphere, in the media, or in Hollywood. Here’s just a short look at their responses. Some acknowledge that Suleimani was a bad man, but think it’s better to pay off evil people than to fight them. (Neville Chamberlain could commiserate with that crowd.) Others believe that America is the evil one and that the strike against Suleimani removed a respected and revered leader who was a freedom fighter for his land.

I’ll lead with Ilhan Omar’s tweet, because it gives you a twofer: a Democrat politician (Chris Murphy of Connecticut) terribly afraid that we really made Iran angry, over which Omar has layered her special anti-Trump sentiment by implying that the strike had no purpose other than to distract from Trump’s impeachment woes:

So what if Trump wants war, knows this leads to war and needs the distraction?

Real question is, will those with congressional authority step in and stop him? I know I will. https://t.co/Fj9TMossEW

— Ilhan Omar (@IlhanMN) January 3, 2020

The WaPo, once impressed by that austere religious scholar, and mass murderer, al Baghdadi, seemed to mourn the loss of a revered Iranian leader:

Breaking news: Airstrike at Baghdad airport kills Iran’s most revered military leader, Qasem Soleimani, Iraqi state television reports https://t.co/NbZW4DaWvD

— The Washington Post (@washingtonpost) January 3, 2020

Various Dem political figures followed Chris Murphy’s lead — bad man, but we shouldn’t kill bad men, even when they attack America, because that’s scary:

We’re on the brink of yet another war in the Middle East—one that would be devastating in terms of lives lost and resources wasted. We’re not here by accident. We’re here because a reckless president, his allies, and his administration have spent years pushing us here.

— Elizabeth Warren (@ewarren) January 3, 2020

I was right about Vietnam.

I was right about Iraq.

I will do everything in my power to prevent a war with Iran.

I apologize to no one. pic.twitter.com/Lna3oBZMKB

— Bernie Sanders (@SenSanders) January 3, 2020

The general feeling in this crowd is that America is a big bully, so she should just take it on the chin when terrorists kill her citizens and attack her soil.

And then there are the open America haters, mostly in Hollywood, who don’t need to bother with careful political rhetoric. The worst was undoubtedly Rose McGowan, a child raised in a cult who then went to Hollywood where she was sexually exploited. She’s beautiful, famous, and unhinged:

Dear #Iran, The USA has disrespected your country, your flag, your people. 52% of us humbly apologize. We want peace with your nation. We are being held hostage by a terrorist regime. We do not know how to escape. Please do not kill us. #Soleimani pic.twitter.com/YE54CqGCdr

— rose mcgowan (@rosemcgowan) January 3, 2020

Fuck your freedom and shove it up your #MAGA ass https://t.co/RQr2x5pCS1

— rose mcgowan (@rosemcgowan) January 3, 2020

The reliably American hating Michael Moore also had a say. He turned the American flag into an ugly simulacrum of the Iranian flag; implied as did Ilhan Omar that this was Trump’s “wag the dog” moment; and put out a poster showing America as a regional aggressor. This last one misunderstands two things: First, that Iran has been at war with the US continuously since Iran’s last attack on America soil, namely the US Embassy in Tehran in 1979. Second, that America is a regional defender that protects surrounding Sunni nations rightly afraid of Iran’s imperialism and terrorism:

pic.twitter.com/EVJlREADHn

— Michael Moore (@MMFlint) January 3, 2020

pic.twitter.com/HTC5P7oyPv

— Michael Moore (@MMFlint) January 3, 2020

pic.twitter.com/ZGzJESxQ2x

— Michael Moore (@MMFlint) January 3, 2020

One of the things that got the Hollywood crowd most excited was a November 29, 2011, tweet from Donald Trump saying he suspected that Obama was planning to start a war with Iran in order to secure his reelection. One example will suffice:

There’s a tweet for everything. Holy shit. https://t.co/q1AstkSzvf

— Alyssa Milano (@Alyssa_Milano) January 3, 2020

The problem with looking to that tweet that the situation in November 2011 was quite different from that which Trump faced this past week.

The Arab spring had turned violent. In March, 2011, Obama had, however, unilaterally launched a military invasion of Libya, despite the fact that by this time Qaddafi had stopped aggressive actions against the U.S. Just as he did nothing to protect ordinary Iranians, Obama seemed happy to hand the war over to violent Islamists who tortured Qadaffi to death on October 20, 2011.

Qudaffi was horrible and probably didn’t deserve better than he got, but Obama had still betrayed someone who wasn’t an enemy at the time. Eleven days after Qadaffi died, Obama announced that the war with Libya was over, pulled out, and created a giant vacuum that extremists filled — Iranian-funded extremists who attacked the Benghazi consulate less than a year later.

By mid-November, Iran was escalating its nuclear activities and directly threatening Israel. Obama, before he decided to buy off Iran. was talking tough. So tough that even the Guardian was worried, implying in early November, in its Corbyn-esque anti-Semitic way, that Israel was driving Obama to war:

War with Iran is the last thing Barack Obama needs with the American economy in dire trouble and a tough White House election campaign looming next year, according to officials in Washington as well as political analysts.

But while the Obama administration is desperate to avoid another conflict – it would be America’s fourth in a decade – the drumbeat from Israel has been growing louder.

The Israeli cabinet was reported on Wednesday to be debating whether to launch air strikes on Iranian nuclear sites in the coming weeks. The prime minister, Binyamin Netanyahu, and the defence minister, Ehud Barak, are lobbying in favour of action, but other senior ministers are urging caution.
In response, Iran has warned, as it has in the past, that any attack by Israel would result in retaliation against the US. The Iranian news agency ISNA quoted Hassan Firouzabadi, Iran’s military chief, as saying: “The Zionist regime’s military attack against Iran will inflict heavy damages to the US as well as the Zionist regime.”

The rhetoric from Tel Aviv and Tehran is making some within the Obama administration nervous.

On November 21, eight days before Trump’s tweet, Obama had signed an executive order imposing sanctions on Iran. This new tough Obama, incidentally, was the same man who stood silently by in 2009 as Iranians took to the street to protest the Mullahs’ brutal leadership (a brutality that Soleimani cruelly helped).

All of which to say is that anyone watching Obama in November 2011 was rightfully worried. Obama was never a courageous man; he was a weak man who used the weapons of war available to him in counter-intuitive and cruel ways (think of all those drone strikes killing civilians in non-combatant countries). Trump’s guess about Obama’s motives was wrong, but it was a reasonable guess at the time.

This time around, Iran attacked, the US counterattacked, Iran attacked again, and Trump said “enough is enough” — and then killed the head of the entire Iranian terror apparatus. It was a beautifully done both tactically and strategically, and was a long-delayed, and long-deserved show of overwhelming force against a festering enemy that pushed too far.

I’m pleased. Very pleased.

Suleiman was a known terrorist who was outside of his country when he was killed and whose forces had just attacked American soil.

The timing of Trump’s strike is good too. Trump has weakened Iran, both by reimposing those sanctions Obama lifted and by turning America into a net oil exporter, thereby cutting severely into Iran’s only real economic asset. As a result, the Iranian regime is very weak. Indeed, when it comes to that asset, Lindsay Graham, of all people, offered his own little reminder about just how weak Iran is:

If Iranian aggression continues and I worked at an Iranian oil refinery, I would think about a new career.

— Lindsey Graham (@LindseyGrahamSC) January 3, 2020

Iran is hurting economically and its citizens are chaffing terribly under its oppressive rule. There have been strikes all over the country, showing that people no longer fear the government. It’s true that the Mullahs struck back hard at the protesters, killing at least a thousand of its own citizens and imprisoning thousands more. By killing Soleimani, though, Trump reminded the Iranian people that their leaders may be brutal, but they’re also mortal. That’s how you support a revolution.

One more thing: This wasn’t all Trump, of course. Endless kudos to the members of the American military and intelligence communities who protected our embassy and killed our enemy.

The post Trump has shown true leadership with events in Iraq appeared first on Watcher of Weasels.

The Iran Question & The Lindsey Graham Answer

What is Iran hoping to accomplish with the attack on Saudi oil facilities? And what should be the response? — by Wolf Howling

The “mad mullahs” of Iran are the single most destabilizing influence in the Middle East and Iran is the world’s largest sponsor of terrorism. But while the mad mullahs have, since the 1979 Revolution, always been hyper-aggressive, pushing murder, mayhem and kidnapping to the very limit of what they can get away with on the international stage, what the mad mullahs haven’t been, until now at least, is suicidal. Did that just change with an attack on one of the world’s largest oil refineries?

In brief, Saudi Arabia runs the world’s largest oil processing facility at Abqaiq, which is responsible for 5% of the world’s oil and gas supplies. On Saturday, either Iran or an Iranian proxy attached it, using either drones or missiles. The fires have since been put out but the damage remains to be fully assessed. This is, any way you look at it, a profound escalation of the war in the Middle East, one that directly threatens the global economy.

This from Fox News:

“Tehran is behind nearly 100 attacks on Saudi Arabia while [President Hassan] Rouhani and [Foreign Minister Mohammad] Zarif pretend to engage in diplomacy,” Pompeo tweeted, referring to the nation’s president and foreign affairs minister. ” … There is no evidence the attacks came from Yemen.”
Iran-backed Houthi rebels in Yemen claimed responsibility for the attack hours before Pompeo’s tweet. The world’s largest oil processing facility in Saudi Arabia and a major oil field were impacted, sparking huge fires at a vulnerable chokepoint for global energy supplies. . . .

According to multiple news reports that cited unidentified sources, the drone attacks affected up to half of the supplies from the world’s largest exporter of oil, though the output should be restored within days. It remained unclear if anyone was injured at the Abqaiq oil processing facility and the Khurais oil field.

The WSJ characterizes the attack on the oil facilities as “the big one“:

Saturday’s attack on a critical Saudi oil facility will almost certainly rock the world energy market in the short term, but it also carries disturbing long-term implications.

Ever since the dual 1970s oil crises, energy security officials have fretted about a deliberate strike on one of the critical choke points of energy production and transport. Sea lanes such as the Strait of Hormuz usually feature in such speculation. The facility in question at Abqaiq is perhaps more critical and vulnerable. The Wall Street Journal reported that 5.7 million barrels a day of output, or some 5% of world supply, had been taken offline as a result. . . .

And this from CNN:

The attack on the world’s largest oil processing plant early Saturday morning is a dramatic escalation in the confrontation between Iran and Saudi Arabia — even if the Iranians didn’t fire the drones or missiles responsible.

Several projectiles struck the Abqaiq plant, starting a series of fires that quickly took out nearly half Saudi’s oil production — 5% of the global daily output — and sparking fears about the security of the world’s oil supplies. . . .

But where did this attack originate and who was behind it?

The Houthis have sent dozens of drones and short-range ballistic missiles against Saudi Arabia in the past two years. Many have been intercepted by Saudi air defenses; others have fallen harmlessly. A very few have caused limited damage and casualties.

Houthi drones are based on Iranian models, . . .

A source with knowledge of the incident told CNN National Security Analyst Peter Bergen late Saturday that preliminary indications were the drones/missiles “did not originate from Yemen and likely originated from Iraq.” A second source in the Gulf region told CNN that while there was no proof yet, the indications were that the attack originated in southern Iraq.

Pro-Iranian militia are well-entrenched in southern Iraq, and the Quds Force, the Iranian Revolutionary Guards unit in charge of foreign operations, has a presence there. Earlier this year, some regional analysts assessed that a drone attack on a pumping station at Afif in northern Saudi Arabia originated in Iraq. But no hard evidence was produced.

The Iraqi government Sunday issued a statement rejecting reports “about its land being used to attack Saudi oil facilities.” . . .

Things are unquestionably getting desperate in Tehran since Trump pulled us out of the Iran Deal and reimposed sanctions. This from Foreign Policy Magazine:

. . . The bad news for Iran is that, just a few months after U.S. sanctions on oil exports kicked back in, the economy is in miserable shape. The currency has depreciated, inflation is rampant, and unemployment is high, while GDP contracted last year and looks set to shrink even further this year. Dwindling oil exports have cut into government revenues, and U.S. sanctions on financial transactions have chilled economic activity in a number of other sectors, including autos and humanitarian goods like food and medicine.“The economy is even worse than they let on,” said Alireza Nader, the CEO of New Iran, a research and advocacy organization in Washington. Iran’s once proud auto industry is on the verge of collapse, and while Iranian Central Bank officials have managed to stabilize the exchange rate, it came at the cost of draining foreign reserves. Meanwhile, shortages of meat and basic medicines are fueling popular frustration. “This idea of the resistance economy is totally false,” Nader said.

The really scary news for Iran is that the full brunt of U.S. sanctions has really just begun to be felt, with limits on Iranian oil exports becoming effective only last November. The U.S. economic pressure is simply adding to years of corruption and economic mismanagement by Iran’s leadership, which has led to chronic inflation, unemployment, and failed efforts to turn Iran into a welcoming place for foreign investment. Coupled with lower average oil prices now than during the Obama administration, when the United States sharply limited Iran’s crude exports, that means Tehran has less ability to absorb U.S. sanctions than in the past. . . .

So the mad mullahs are becoming desperate — and Iran’s method of seeking rapprochement with the global community is to act out and demand that it be accepted on the mullah’s terms. Tehran — pretending that it wasn’t before — is now open about its development of nuclear weapons. Moreover, with its tanker attacks, Tehran has been trying for the past few months to spark a very limited war with the U.S. that they could play to their international advantage as their situation has steadily worsened. When that failed, Iran has now seemingly upped the ante.

True, the mad mullahs are disclaiming any responsibility for the attack (and, in no surprise at all, Democrats such as Sen. Chris Murphy, D-Conn., are already lining up in Iran’s defense.) But the Houthi rebels — or the Iranian backed militias in Iraq — are funded, trained and armed by Iran, regardless of whether their daily operational control comes from the mad mullahs. And thus, if you cut off their funding by taking away Iran’s ability to continue funding these proxy groups, the proxy groups will shrivel and die as well.

The one sure way to end this is to respond forcefully against Iran’s oil, the source of over a third of their government funding. Lindsey Graham 2.0 has it right:

“It is now time for the U.S. to put on the table an attack on Iranian oil refineries if they continue their provocations or increase nuclear enrichment,” Graham tweeted.

“Iran will not stop their misbehavior until the consequences become more real, like attacking their refineries, which will break the regime’s back,” he added.

Amen.

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IRAN, ISRAEL, WAR – “The Fighting Dramatically Escalates As Both Sides Prepare For ‘The Final War’ Between Israel And Iran” —by Michael Snyder

IRAN, ISRAEL, WAR

OPINION: JEFFREY A. FRIEDBERG

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Jeffrey A. Friedberg

** So many of you apparent, on-the-record, Israel-Jew-haters, seem to frequently cite reported, lying, Muslim and Racist propaganda— how the “USA fights Israel’s battles for them,” because the USA “works for the Israel lobby.”

Well, Tinkerbell: you can take all that with you straight to Hell.

<<<<<——————>>>>>

ARTICLE BY MICHAEL SNYDER:

[IRAN, ISRAEL, WAR]

Are we about to see World War 3 erupt in the Middle East?  Over the past several days, Israel has attempted to prevent attacks by Iranian forces and their allies by striking targets in Syria, Gaza, Lebanon and Iraq.  As you will see below, political leaders in both Lebanon and Iraq are now accusing Israel of a “declaration of war”, and Hezbollah is pledging to strike Israel back extremely hard.  Of course if a full-blown war erupts between Israel and one of her neighbors, it is likely to become a multi-front war almost immediately.  But at the core, this is a conflict between Israel and Iran.  The Iranians have repeatedly pledged to wipe the nation of Israel off the face of the planet, and the coming “final war” is going to literally be a matter of life or death for those two nations.  Both sides have been preparing for this “final war” for a very long time, and once it fully erupts the death and destruction that we will witness will be off the charts.

 Just within the past few days, the fighting has escalated dramatically as the Israelis have conducted operations in four different territories

Israeli forces openly claimed attacks over the weekend in Syria and the Palestinian-administered Gaza Strip and were blamed for two more operations in Lebanon and Iraq. As reports of what occurred across the region emerged, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu hinted at his country’s ongoing efforts abroad, telling a Monday planning meeting that “we will deepen our roots and strike at our enemies.”

The attacks in Syria, Lebanon and Iraq specifically targeted Iranian forces and their allies, and the goal was to prevent imminent attacks against Israel

In Syria, Israeli warplanes killed two members of the Lebanese Hezbollah. Israel says the individuals were supporting an Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps plot to launch explosive-laden drones into Israel. The Israelis say that the specific Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps unit responsible was the Quds Force, led by Qassem Soleimani. If true, the Quds Force was likely using Hezbollah as a deniable proxy to avoid direct links between the plot and Tehran.

In another operation in Lebanon, Israel targeted another Iranian-allied group, the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine. In Iraq, senior Iran-aligned figures accused Israel of another air strike.

Missiles are not flying directly back and forth between Israel and Iran yet, but at this point a state of war essentially exists, and many are deeply concerned about what is going to happen next.

In particular, it looks like Hezbollah could launch a large scale attack against Israel at any moment, because their leadership is absolutely furious that the Israelis just hit their headquarters building in Beirut

Hassan Nasrallah, Hezbollah’s secretary-general, threatened to attack Israel in retaliation for a drone attack over the weekend on the organization’s headquarters in Beirut. Tensions between Israel and Hezbollah are now at their highest point since the 2006 war.

And the Lebanese government itself is extremely angry as well.  In fact, the president of Lebanon has publicly stated that what Israel has just done is essentially the equivalent of “a declaration of war”

Lebanese President Michel Aoun met Monday with the U.N. Special Coordinator for Lebanon Jan Kubis, calling Israel’s moves in Beirut and Qusaya “a declaration of war.”

The statement echoed the words of Iraq’s powerful Fateh Alliance, which called separate strikes that killed a militia commander in the border town of Al-Qaim “a declaration of war on Iraq and its people,” according to the Associated Press.

 

This is an extremely serious situation.  Israel is literally on the brink of war with Hezbollah, and many feel that such a war is inevitable.

Meanwhile, a very powerful bloc in the Iraqi government has also accused Israel of “a declaration of war”

A powerful bloc in Iraq’s parliament has called for the withdrawal of US troops from Iraq, following a series of air raids targeting Iran-backed Shia militias in the country that have been blamed on Israel.

The Fatah Coalition said on Monday that it holds the United States fully responsible for the alleged Israeli aggression, “which we consider to be a declaration of war on Iraq and its people.”

We had not seen the Israeli military strike targets in Iraq until just recently, and this latest attack has absolutely enraged the Shia militias.  During the funeral procession for the commander that was killed in the attack, some of the Shia fighters were actually trampling the American flag

The Shia militia group, meanwhile, held a funeral procession in Baghdad for the commander killed on Sunday.

“There is no greater God but God!” the mourners shouted as they marched behind a banner with the words “Death to America” and “Death to Israel.” Some trampled on an American flag as they marched.

Thousands of U.S. soldiers died, thousands more were injured, and we spent trillions of dollars in the process of “liberating” Iraq, and this is how they feel about us.

What a colossal waste.

Ultimately, nothing is going to be able to stop the massive war that is coming to the region.  The Iranians and all of their allies have a religiously-fueled hatred for Israel that most people living in the western world will never understand, and they are absolutely obsessed with permanently destroying the nation of Israel as it exists today.  There will never be peace between the two sides, and the coming apocalyptic conflict will literally be a battle for national survival.

This can definitely be described as a time of “wars and rumors of wars”, and the situation on the ground is extremely fluid right now.  The fact that the Israelis have another national election coming up adds another layer of complexity to all of this, and that election may cause events to accelerate even faster than many were anticipating.

Let us pray for peace, because right now tensions are extremely high and things are beginning to spiral out of control.

And when a full-blown war does break out, it is highly likely that the U.S. will get involved, and that will have enormous implications for all of us.

Get Prepared NowAbout the author: Michael Snyder is a nationally-syndicated writer, media personality and political activist. He is the author of four books including Get Prepared Now, The Beginning Of The End and Living A Life That Really Matters. His articles are originally published on The Economic Collapse Blog, End Of The American Dreamand The Most Important News. From there, his articles are republished on dozens of other prominent websites. If you would like to republish his articles, please feel free to do so. The more people that see this information the better, and we need to wake more people up while there is still time.

http://endoftheamericandream.com/archives/the-fighting-dramatically-escalates-as-both-sides-prepare-for-the-final-war-between-israel-and-iran

<<<<<———————>>>>>

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“Emotionals”—Such As Our Millennials, Democrat Voters, and Suburban USA Housewives—Have No Reason. They Don’t, Or Can’t, THINK.

“Emotionals”—Such As Our Millennials, Democrat Voters, and Suburban USA Housewives—Have No Reason. They Don’t, Or Can’t, THINK.

OPINION: BY JEFFREY A. FRIEDBERG

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<<<——————>>>

There’s a  problem with Emotionals.

These are “folks” who don’t actually think, but react. They react with emotions—with feelings. Not with actual thoughts or reasoning.

They don’t think things through or maybe ask, “How did this work out the last time it was done?”

Because there are others whom they could ask. There are older, wiser, and more experienced people in the world. You know—from the generations who fought in WWII, Korea, Viet Nam, Iraq, Afghanistan, and elsewhere across the Earth.

Others, who came long before the current sea of lies, bullsht, and Hollywood make-believe.

Emotionals could learn, from those of us who INVENTED computers, transistors, lasers, CDs, video, the space age, and the Internet Itself.

But, no. Emotionals think all they need are their phones and digital devices. They never think how these devices are all programmed by OTHER Emotionals— who don’t think either.

”Emotionals” can include millennials, suburban housewives, and democrat voters. Instead of asking others outside their tribes, or investigating thoroughly for themselves, they seem to rely on programming. What they were “taught” in Government creches—the so-called, “schools.” The inculcation centers where they were originally brainwashed.

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“THE MATRIX” (1999)

You know what I mean—the test tubes where they were trained not to think; not to question; not to have any real imagination, independence from the group, or any spirit of patriotism.

No, they were taught the opposite. By Captain Planet; by Sesame Street; by Fred Rogers; by hate groups; by Mr. Barack “Barry Soetoro” Obama; by kneeling athletes, Nike, Anderson Cooper, Chuck, Rachel, other talking nobodies on the “news,” and—oh—by Supergirl on Canadian TV.

And by all those make-believe freaks in Hollywood movies, who taught them there is no point resisting. There is no point in trying to go it alone. There is nothing they can do against real poWER.

You know—POWER pumped in your face by “social” media. POWER rammed inTO your orifices by “silicon valley.” THE POWER of propaganda, lies, obfuscation, and deletion.

Power of The Nothing.

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Remember? THE NOTHING? – AS IN, “THE NEVERENDING STORY.”

 

No—now they “know everything.”

They tell me I am old, and should die.

Well—fck you, pal—I’m not, and I won’t.

They ignore witnesses to the past. They avoid elders as unclean. They “KNOW” what their pre-programmed emotions and feelings tell them.

They have zero need for logic. They already have the answers.

They have been told what to think.

To them “It’s a new world.” —Noit’s not.

It’s the same world with the same bullsht, same lies, same propaganda, and same totalitarian aspirations. It’s the same old crap, “bro.” …seen it three times already.

What’s different, is: for the first time in human history, the science exists to enslave a world. Earth.

WE invented it. But THEY are harnessing it.

Will electing Trump in 2020 stop them?

No.

Will it slow them down?

Yes.

Will it get rid of them?

No. The only thing that can do that—is they, themselves. If they decide to open those gates.

<<<<<——————>>>>>

The post “Emotionals”—Such As Our Millennials, Democrat Voters, and Suburban USA Housewives—Have No Reason. They Don’t, Or Can’t, THINK. appeared first on Watcher of Weasels.

Benjamin Wittes and witless logic about Trump

The Benjamin Wittes “I believe” tweetstorm about Trump, intended to expose conservative “Doublethink,” instead exposed Leftist irrationality and ignorance.

The anti-Trump blogosphere, both Leftists and #NeverTrumpers, is excited about an endless series of tweets from Benjamin Wittes all intended, in a sarcastic way, to challenge Trump and his supporters. Before I go further, some background on Wittes: He is a Brookings Institution Senior Fellow who graduated from Oberlin and is currently co-director of Harvard Law School’s Brookings Project on Law and Security. In other words, he’s been marinated in Leftism since he hit college (and, given that he went to a non-Orthodox Jewish school in New York City, probably for his entire life).

Okay. Now back to those tweets. It’s apparent from reviewing the tweets that what Wittes is trying to do is show that conservatives have entered the Orwellian world of “doublethink”:

Doublethink means the power of holding two contradictory beliefs in one’s mind simultaneously, and accepting both of them.

In fact, what Wittes has managed to do is show that Leftists are incapable of even “singlethink” — that is, the ability to look at two related pieces of information and recognize that they can easily and logically exist simultaneously in the same universe. For example, I can simultaneously believe that cows produce milk to feed their young and that humans consume and benefit from milk. As you can see, these two apparently disparate thoughts — cows milk is cow food but it’s also human food — manage to exist in the same universe without creating a logical black hole that destroys all rational thought.

With that in mind, how about we take a look at the Wittes tweet thread (which I’ve rendered in plain text):

I believe the president. I have always believed him.
‘I believe the president’: GOP stands by Trump on sexual assault allegation
Republicans are dismissing E. Jean Carroll’s accusation and still sticking with Trump.
https://www.politico.com/story/2019/06/25/trump-accuse-gop-1382385

Yeah, I stand by President Trump too on this one. I’m not going to analyze it here, though, because Wittes raises the subject again, below, and that’s where I address more fully the sordid sexual allegations Lefties like to raise against Trump.

I believed him when he said he wanted to ban Muslims from entering the United States. And I believe him now when he says his travel ban has nothing to do with religious discrimination.

In other words, Wittes is saying it’s impossible simultaneously to believe that Trump wants to keep Muslims out of America while not discriminating against Muslims; i.e., it’s doublethink! Except that to anyone who pays attention to facts, there’s nothing “doublethinky” at all about the fact that there is a segment of Islam that is cheerfully dedicated to Western destruction.

As it is, Wittes seems to have sat out the last few decades, when extremist members of the Islamic faith:

  • took over Iran in 1970 and declared war on America;
  • bombed a U.S. Marines barracks in Beirut in 1983, killing 241 Americans;
  • bombed the World Trade Center in 1993, killing 6 Americans;
  • bombed American embassies in Tanzania and Kenya in 1998, killing 224 people;
  • bombed the USS Cole in 2000, killing 17 Americans;
  • attacked the World Trade Center and the Pentagon in 2001, killing 2,996 people, the vast majority of whom were Americans;
  • attacked Fort Hood in 2009, killing 13 Americans;
  • attacked the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi in 2012, killing 4 people, among whom was an American ambassador; bombed the Boston Marathon in 2013, killing 5 Americans;
  • attacked a recruiting station in Chattanooga in 2015, killing 5 Americans;
  • attacked a Christmas party in San Bernardino in 2015, killing 14 Americans;
  • attacked a gay nightclub in Orlando in 2016, killing 49 Americans; and
  • ran over bicyclists in New York in 2017, killing 8 people.

And all of the above are just the bigger attacks aimed directly at Americans since the Iranian Revolution.

In the same time period, some of the better known Islamist attacks around the world targeted London, Manchester, Nice, Mumbai, Nairobi, Paris, Berlin, Madrid…. And of course there was ISIS, which decimated the Christian Yazidis by slaughtering the men and sexually enslaving the women, before turning Islamic wrath on any of the “wrong” types of Muslims unluckily enough to be caught in its path. Those beheadings, crucifixions, and tortures were all internecine Islamic brutality.

Really, when you come right down to it, there’s a pretty long list of Islamist attacks around the world. Religion of Peace, a website dedicated to tracking Islam-inspired murder, notes that, since 9/11, there have been 35,222 Islamic attacks around the world. That’s not the number of dead; that’s the number of attacks. In May 2019 alone, Islamists killed over 800 people in 169 different attacks over 27 countries.

With that in mind, it’s perfectly reasonable to say that, when Muslims seek leave to come to America, a wise government will scrutinize them carefully to make sure that they the particular Muslims at issue don’t belong to that subset of Muslims (roughly 10% of the world’s 1.6 billion Muslims) who believe it is your religious responsibility to slaughter as many “unbelievers” as possible — and to say that without hating Muslims en masse. Indeed, word just broke today that the U.S. warned Mexico that ISIS members were heading to our southern border, hoping to slip in with all the other illegal aliens Democrats so adore, in order to launch mass murder attacks in America. (Thankfully, they seem to have been caught.)

Moreover, it’s perfectly reasonable, when trying to figure out how best to protect Americans from terrorism to rely upon Obama administration data identifying countries that generate the greatest number of terrorist attacks around the world. It’s not Trump’s fault, nor is it “anti-Muslim” sentiment, that the countries the Obama administration identified as the greatest terrorist supporters were Muslim countries. That’s just reality.

In other words, there’s nothing illogical about seeking to protect Americans from murderous Islamic extremists — a subset of Islam that manifestly exists — without hating all Muslims.

I believed him when he said Mexico is sending us its rapists and criminals, and I believed him when he said he loves Hispanics. [Linking to this post of his.]

Is it possible to respect and admire the Hispanic people and culture without respecting and admiring rapists and criminals? Wittes doesn’t think so. He’s trying to say that Trump was maligning Hispanics as a whole when he said that a disproportionate number of Mexican criminals were heading north to America. Of course, if Trump was not maligning Hispanics as a whole, but was merely noting accurately that too many hardcore criminals are using a porous border to their advantage, then the two statements can simultaneously exist perfectly well in a logical universe.

First, let’s acknowledge that there are rapists and other criminals in Mexico. In January 2018, the Mexican government admitted to its highest murder rate in history, driven by vast criminal activity:

Soaring levels of drug-related violence made 2017 Mexico’s most murderous year on record, according to government statistics released Sunday.

There were 25,339 homicides in Mexico last year, a 23% jump from 2016 and the highest number since at least 1997, the year the government began tracking the data. Overall, murders in Mexico had been declining in recent years, reaching a low of 15,520 in 2014. But officials say a surge in drug-related crime reversed that trend.

Mexican rape statistics are pretty stinky too:

Officials estimate that each year there are 120,000 rapes, one every 4 minutes, making Mexico number one in the world for sexual violence incidents. (México es el primer lugar en violencia sexual: ONU) (Over 14,000 Women Are Raped in Mexico Every Year: Report)

Most of these rapes go unreported.  Of those that are reported, very few are brought to justice.  For example, in 2009, 14,829 rape cases were filed.  Of those, only 3,462 were prosecuted, which led to only 2,795 sentences. (Amnistía Internacional (AI) en 2012)(LA VIOLENCIA SEXUAL EN MÉXICO INICIA EN CASA Y EN SU MAYORÍA QUEDA IMPUNE)

Do you want those rapists and murderers to invite themselves into America? I don’t. I want a border policy that requires people to prove, as best as possible, that they’re non-criminal, well-intentioned human beings before heading into my country.

We also know that the rapists that make Mexico the most dangerous country in the world for sexual violence have been taking advantage of women and children who enter America illegally. Already in 2014, before Trump lambasted the rapists coming to America, HuffPo (!) reported on the scope of the problem:

According to a stunning Fusion investigation, 80 percent of women and girls crossing into the U.S. by way of Mexico are raped during their journey. That’s up from a previous estimate of 60 percent, according to an Amnesty International report.

What this means is that, when Trump announced that he wanted to stop the flow of criminal illegal aliens, he was also protecting those Hispanic women and girls who are being raped along the way. That sounds like someone who likes Hispanics and wishes them well, rather than the opposite.

By the way, Mexico may not have been deliberately sending us the baddies, but it certainly wasn’t trying to stop them. Already in 2005, the Mexican government was provided instruction manuals for those entering the U.S. illegally. Mexico claimed it was to save lives, but Mexico could have saved lives by (a) stopping people at its border and (b) cleaning up its utterly corrupt government rather than letting the U.S. serve as a source of revenue and a way to lessen population pressure within Mexico.

And there’s one more thing to keep in mind about hating Mexican criminals while loving Hispanics: Those illegal alien rapists and murderers don’t go to Beverly Hills, Marin County, the Hamptons, or D.C.’s Kalorama neighborhood (where Obama lives) to find prey. They prey on people in their own communities; namely, fellow Hispanics. If you love Hispanics, you can show that love by protecting them from the drug dealers, rapists, robbers, and murderers who see in America a new source victims for their crimes. There’s no doublethink involved in holding both those thoughts simultaneously.

I believe that Trump Tower makes the best taco bowls.

I don’t like taco bowls, so this one is entirely subjective. If Wittes likes Trump Tower’s taco bowls, that’s very nice.

I believe that Donald Trump will drain the swamp and that his election has delivered us from the corruption of Bill and Hillary Clinton.

I believe that too. With William Barr and his Inspector Generals examining the administrative state’s efforts to subvert the 2016 election, I think there’s a chance that we will return to an era of honest, or at least less partisan, government in D.C. This healthy trend will be helped by the fact that Trump is cutting regulations, shrinking administrative agencies, and attempting to move agency operations from the D.C. swamp out into those regions of America that the agencies are actually supposed to serve.

As for the corruption of Bill and Hillary, all I can say is that, if you want to see collusion with Russia and just look at the Clintons. Look at the Steele dossier, look at the sale of America’s uranium to Russia, and look at the vast amounts of money that flowed from Russia to Hillary via Bill’s speaking engagements. While I don’t think Trump will ever seriously prosecute either of those grifters, I have to believe America is safer without the Clintons willingly selling off American interests to hostile foreign countries in order to enrich themselves and advance their grip on political power.

I believe him when he says there’s no reason for him to disclose his tax returns.

No one should ever have to disclose his or her tax returns. If politicians want to do it voluntarily, fine. If not, fine. Trump’s tax returns are irrelevant to his promises as a candidate and his practices as a president. See? I can hold that logical thought just fine.

I believe him when he says there’s no reason to divest himself of any of his financial holdings.

If you were good with the Clinton Foundation that existed to sell America’s interests to enrich the Clinton clan (and I’m betting Wittes didn’t complain too much or at all), I don’t ever want to hear another word from you about a politician’s financial holdings. In any event, it’s a modern concern. It’s worth remembering that past presidents, men of true greatness such as Washington, would have laughed themselves silly over this idea.

By the way, please remind me how Harry Reid, after decades in government service, became hugely wealthy. And Biden. How’d Biden get so rich? And how did his unsavory son get so rich? In other words, if you’re really worried about financial corruption, clean your own house before casting stones at a man who has been a happy and unabashed billionaire for decades with money made in the real world, rather than through politics.

I believed him when he protested that he wasn’t trying to get a security clearance for his daughter and son-in-law. And I believe him now when says he needs his family installed by his side in the West Wing.

I believe that Jared Kushner’s deserves a security clearance.

If you were okay with Ben Rhodes’ security clearance, you’ve got nothing to complain about. If you were okay about Michelle’s mother moving into the White House, you’ve got nothing to complain about. If you didn’t mind Hillary’s recently deceased brother economically raping Haiti, I don’t want to hear from you. If you sat silently while Biden used the VP’s office to enrich his son, you need to stop talking.

So far, aside from snarky complaints about his buttoned down look, the Left doesn’t have much to hang on Jared Kushner. Although I have to say that I’m worried that, before Trump became the great conservative hope, both Kushner and Ivanka were garden-variety elitist Democrats. I hope seeing the bared fangs of the Democrats attacking them has educated Kushner and Ivanka about who their real enemies are.

I believe that only rank partisanship and media bias explain the skepticism about Trump’s finances running rampant in the press.

I’m glad Wittes believes that. I believe it too.

I believe E. Jean Carroll is a cheap tramp who was asking for it.

I also believe she is not Trump’s type.

I believe Temple Taggart McDowell is a cheap tramp who was asking for it.

I believe Rachel Crooks is a cheap tramp who was asking for it.

I believe Natasha Stoynoff is a cheap tramp who was asking for it.

I believe Mindy McGillivray is a cheap tramp who was asking for it.

I believe that all of the other women who have accused the President of sexual assault are also cheap tramps who were asking for it.
In any event, I also believe that the President was merely engaged in “locker room talk” when he boasted of grabbing women by the pussy.

I believe that when you’re a star, they let you do it.

Wittes is clearly incredulous that people could believe that Trump did not rape someone. He believes this despite the fact that Republicans have seen false rape allegations leveled against multiple conservatives who are deemed terrible dangerous to the Leftist cause, conservatives such as Clarence Thomas and Brett Kavanaugh. These allegations always crumbled in the face of objective facts and credible testimony.

Contrariwise, Democrats never seemed particularly bothered by more substantive claims against prominent Democrats such as Teddy Kennedy or Bill Clinton. Indeed, they’re also remarkably unconcerned about Joe Biden’s disturbing habit of pawing little girls. Democrats will talk about — and usually excuse — his handsiness with adult women (“That’s just Joe being Joe”), but they’re remarkably silent about his weird, creepy behavior around children.

As for me, I’m disgusted that, even in jest, Wittes would say that E. Jean Carroll is a “tramp who was asking for it.” Trump hasn’t said that nor have his supporters. What they have said is that Carroll’s affect is so peculiar it appears she has substance abuse or mental illness problems.

There are a few other reasons to question Carroll’s assertions: She’s a Democrat donor. She has a book to sell. She bizarrely refuses to press charges against Trump because it would insult real rape victims on our borders. Her narrative is hard to believe, for Bergdorf was a busy store with locked fitting rooms that sales clerks had to open for customers, which is hardly the setting for a sexual assault. She thinks rape is sexy. Oh, and she seems to have lifted her narrative right out of an old Law & Order plot.

I’ll add that I suspect that Carroll was promiscuous as a young woman and that her current hostility to men may be a way of distancing herself from the bad feelings she gets looking back upon her own actions. “It wasn’t me; it was them, the men, the rapists, the bullies….” Indeed, if one assumes solely for the sake of argument that Trump did actually have a brief hook-up with her (something I strongly doubt), I wouldn’t put it past Carroll to reframe it as rape so that she wouldn’t see herself as being cheap or for her to reframe it as rape to sell a book and tarnish a Republican.

So yes, in the logical world, one can absolutely believe that a mentally fragile woman has copied a narrative she saw on a TV show in order to sell a book to Leftists, all of whom will believe anything about President Trump, no matter how hackneyed the playbook or surreal the allegations.

As for Carroll’s not being Trump’s type, I’m sure that’s true. I’m going to bet that Trump likes his women willing. If she wasn’t willing, she wasn’t his type.

How about those other allegations?

Other sexual assault charges against Trump came from women who were hardcore Hillary supporters and whose allegations were not only insubstantial, but also vanished quickly. For example, those close to the aptly named Rachel Crooks say that her interaction with Trump more than a decade ago was brief and that her current accusations bear no relationship to her story at the time. In other words, she was either lying then or she’s lying now. Common sense tells us that the latter is more likely.

Interestingly, Wittes doesn’t even mention Jessica Leeds, who asserted that Trump was all over her “like an octopus.” Her statement is either a quotation from a Velvet Underground song (widely known when Leeds was young) or, possibly, a quotation from a well-publicized sexual harassment lawsuit in England. One more thing: Leeds has the same phone number as the Clinton Foundation. Really. What are the odds of that? Maybe I shouldn’t be surprised that Wittes left her off his list.

And that tired old “grab ’em by the pussy” shtick? Some of us actually watched the entire video giving rise to the claim that Trump grabbed women inappropriately. Watching the video instead of taking the media’s word for the video’s contents reveals that Trump was engaging in hypothetical locker room talk. It was crude, but the only thing he actually admitted to doing was making a move on a woman and immediately backing off when she rejected him. When it came to his grabbing women statement, he did not frame it in the first person but put it out as a hypothetical. I’ve always suspect that, had he said more, he would have added, “At least, that’s what Bill Clinton (or Bill Cosby) told me….”

Finally, I’ll bring up Stormy Daniels here, although Wittes doesn’t. What’s seldom mentioned is that Daniels later admitted she never actually had sex with Trump — meaning Trump paid her off just to make her go away, not because he had anything to hide. Keep in mind that Daniels’ lawyer during the interval when the media couldn’t get enough of her was Michael Avenatti, who’s proven to be a psychopathic criminal who defrauded handicapped people and tried to blackmail Nike.

Mostly, Daniels strikes me as a simultaneously pathetic and sinister figure — a woman who used her body to make a living and, when her body stopped being appealing, a woman who turned to extortion to make money. Creepy and sad.

I believed the President when he said he was going to repeal and replace Obamacare and I believed him when he said it was the Democrats’ fault that he didn’t repeal or replace Obamacare.

President Trump would have repealed Obamacare but for two types of legislators: Democrats and John McCain. So yeah, I believe the President about both his intention and the reason he failed. There is nothing inherently contradictory in those two statements.

I believe the President that he’s a great deal maker, and I look forward to his negotiating new trade deals on my behalf.

I believe that tariffs will bring China to its knees.

I believe tariffs will bring Mexico to its knees.

I believe tariffs will bring the European Union to knees.

I believe tariffs will bring Canada to its knees.

I believe that China is trying to protect its businesses from the tariffs by subsidizing them, something that it can only do for so long. After all, behind the hype is the fact that China needs us more than we need China. As CNBC reported:

“So far, the U.S. has slapped duties on $250 billion in Chinese products, while Beijing has put tariffs on $110 billion in American goods. Trump has threatened to impose separate tariffs on more than $300 billion in currently untaxed Chinese goods, and reiterated that threat in the interview Monday morning.”

That tells you in which direction trade is flowing and who holds the cards — and it ain’t China.

I believe that, in order to prevent Trump’s threatened tariffs, Mexico sent 15,000 troops to its border to help control what even Democrats are now calling a crisis. Pence nailed it when he said, “The truth is, in the last 10 days, Mexico has done more to secure our southern border than Democrats in Congress have done in the last 10 years….”

I believe that past administrations sold out the American worker especially to China, as well as to other countries or economic groups (Canada, Mexico, the EU, etc.) that imposed heavy tariffs on American goods and, worse, used government subsidies to make their goods more attractive to consumers. Arguably, this kind of unfair trade will even out in the long run, since the countries and economic unions engaging in this activity cannot maintain subsidies forever. But the long run can be one or two generations and millions of American lives destroyed.

I therefore believe that Trump’s tough negotiating tactics are forcing the long run to happen now. He’s telling them, “I see your unfair trade practices and I’ll raise you so much more in unfair trade practices that you’ll break soon, not in decades. Then we’ll go back to free trade and everyone will be happy.”

I believe both that separating children from their parents is good policy that will deter desperate people from fleeing Central America and coming to the United States and that the policy of separating children from their parents is President Obama’s fault.

I believe in a big, beautiful. transparent wall.

I believe in steel slats.

I believe that around 30 percent of these allegedly “desperate people” aren’t that worried about the children they drag along with them because those poor, misused, trafficked children aren’t theirs.

I believe that the policy of separating children is indeed Obama’s fault, although to be fair to Obama, it was a prior administration that made it impossible for the government to deal expediently with families:

President Barack Obama separated parents from their children at the border.

Obama prosecuted mothers for coming to the United States illegally. He fast tracked deportations. And yes, he housed unaccompanied children in tent cities.

For much of the country — and President Donald Trump — the prevailing belief is that Obama was the president who went easier on immigrants.

Neither Obama nor Democrats created Trump’s zero-tolerance policy, which calls for every illegal border crosser to be prosecuted and leads to their children being detained in separate facilities before being shipped to a shelter and eventually a sponsor family.

But Obama’s policy helped create the road map of enforcement that Trump has been following — and building on.

[snip]

No numbers on children separated from their parents under Obama is available because the Obama administration didn’t keep them, according to Trump DHS officials.

Leon Fresco, a deputy assistant attorney general under Obama, who defended that administration’s use of family detention in court, acknowledged that some fathers were separated from children.

Most fathers and children were released together, often times with an ankle bracelet. Fresco said there were cases where the administration held fathers who were carrying drugs or caught with other contraband who had to be separated from their children.

“ICE could not devise a safe way where men and children could be in detention together in one facility,” Fresco said. “It was deemed too much of a security risk.”

One of the most controversial measures that Obama took was to resurrect the almost-abandoned practice of detaining mothers and children to deter future illegal immigration.

The government had one lightly used 100-bed facility in central Pennsylvania and added three larger facilities in Texas and New Mexico holding thousands.

The New Mexico facility would later close and Obama would face legal challenges that stopped him from detaining mothers and children indefinitely.

[snip]

Obama took other controversial steps as well, including fighting to block efforts to require unaccompanied children to have legal representation and barring detained mothers with their children from being released on bond.

I believe that if you didn’t care when Obama did it but suddenly care now that your new position is phony. You don’t care about immigrants. You care only about is scoring political points.

Finally, I believe that you’ve come down firmly on the side of rejiggering America’s population balance through illegal means in order to create a permanent Democrat Party power base. Kamala Harris, who’s not the brightest bulb on the block, gave the game away in this tweet:

(By the way, is it just me, or does Kamala’s voice remind you of Fran Drescher’s voice, if Drescher were the ex-wife who made your life a living hell with her nagging, prevaricating, and hectoring?)

One more thing . . . about that wall? I believe that you’re either really stupid or pretending to be stupid when you fail to understand that Trump’s reference to slats or invisibility means that he imagines a wall through which light can be seen, as opposed to a solid wall that impairs all visibility. Those are not inconsistent statements; they’re just typical Trump puffery, akin to a manufacturer boasting that it makes “the best facial tissues” or “the lightest weight face cream.”

I believe there is nothing unusual about Trump’s solicitude for Vladimir Putin.

Yeah, about that solicitude to Putin:

President Obama was running for re-election in March 2012, when a live microphone picked up his whispered conversation with then-Russian President Dmitry Medvedev.

Obama told Medvedev it was important for incoming President Vladimir Putin to “give me space” on missile defense and other difficult issues and that after the 2012 presidential election he would have “more flexibility.” Medvedev said he would “transmit” the message to Putin.

“On all these issues, but particularly missile defense, this can be solved, but it’s important for him to give me space,” Obama told Medvedev at a gathering in Seoul, South Korea.

“Yeah, I understand,” said Medvedev, who was about to replaced by Putin as Russian president. “I understand your message about space. Space for you–”

“This is my last election,” Obama said. “After my election I have more flexibility.”

“I understand,” Medvedev said. “I will transmit this information to Vladimir.”

Did Witness complain about Obama then? Or did he complain when Obama said this?

Gov. Romney, I’m glad you recognize al-Qaida is a threat, because a few months ago when you were asked what is the biggest geopolitical group facing America, you said Russia, not al-Qaida. You said Russia. And the 1980s are now calling to ask for their foreign policy back. Because the Cold War has been over for 20 years. But Governor, when it comes to our foreign policy, you seem to want to import the foreign policies of the 1980s, just like the social policy of the 1950s, and the economic policies of the 1920s.

And speaking of al Qaeda, did Wittes say anything bad about Obama when Obama essentially handed Syria over to Putin? That certainly made Putin a happy camper.

As for Trump’s solicitude for Putin. While Trump is careful not to alienate a man with whom he has to do business, whether he likes doing so or not, this is the type of solicitude Trump had displayed as of last year:

  • The Trump Administration has implemented a wide array of sanctions and other punitive actions against Russia for their destabilizing actions and provocations against the U.S. and its allies.
    • In response to Russian interference in the 2016 election and other malfeasance, the Trump Administration has sanctioned Russian oligarchs and intelligence entities.
    • Throughout 2017 and 2018, the U.S. sanctioned numerous Russian actors for violating non-proliferation laws by supporting weapons programs in Iran and Syria, and supporting North Korea’s development of weapons of mass destruction.
    • The Trump Administration has issued sanctions against more than one hundred Russian actors and firms for Russia’s destabilizing actions in Ukraine and its ongoing occupation of Crimea.
    • In March 2017, in response to Russia’s use of a military-grade chemical weapon in the United Kingdom, the Trump Administration ordered multiple Russian consulates in the United States closed and expelled 60 Russian intelligence officers.
  • Due to sanctions imposed by the Trump Administration, the Russian economy and Russian geo-economic projects have been severely constrained.
    • In 2018, as Russian investors reacted to new sanctions, the Russian Ruble made its biggest fall in over three years, and, as of July 2018, is down nearly nine percent against the dollar.
    • As a part of its sanctions against Russia, the United States has prevented numerous companies from partnering with Russian offshore oil projects, denying these projects access to capital and key resources.
    • The Trump Administration has also opposed Russian President Vladimir Putin’s largest geo-economic project, the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline, which could generate hundreds of millions of dollars in revenue for Russia.
  • In the wake of Russian provocations, President Trump has exercised U.S. military power and worked to bolster U.S. allies in Europe.
    • In 2017, President Trump approved the sale of lethal weapons to Ukraine addressing the country’s vulnerability to Russian-backed separatists in its eastern provinces.
    • Under the Trump Administration, Russian mercenaries and other pro-Syrian regime forces attacking U.S. troops in Syria were killed.
    • The U.S. has increased troops and its military capability in Eastern Europe and dramatically increased training and drills with its NATO partners.
    • In 2018, the U.S. Department of Defense increased its spending as part of the European Deterrence Initiative by $1.4 billion dollars.
    • Due to pressure from President Trump, U.S.’ NATO allies have increased defense expenditures by five percent.

Moreover, none of the above even mentions the fact that America’s increased oil production has been disastrous for the Russian economy.

I believe there is nothing unusual about Trump’s solicitude for Kim Jong Un.

Trump is being incredibly canny about his relationship with Kim Jong-un. He looked back at decades of America’s dealing with North Korea and saw a pattern: America told North Korea “be careful or we’ll destroy you.” North Korea responded by amping up its nuclear power. America, instead of responding with the promised military force, instead said, “We’ll pay you to stop being naughty.” North Korea took the money to help prop up its regime and lay dormant until the next time it needed money.

This was a dreadful, completely dead-end pattern that saw North Korea creep ever closer to being a full nuclear power, using American protection money to meet that goal.

Trump tried a different tactic: Trump told Kim Jong-un that North Korea had two choices: Develop nuclear power and be an outcast nation that America would inevitably destroy, with Kim being the first person to be killed, or give up nuclear power and tyranny to become as free and prosperous a nation as South Korea. The verdict is still out on how far Kim Jong-un will go, but he hasn’t done anything naughty of late, there are no more nuclear tests, we haven’t paid them millions in protection money, and Trump gave Kim an ultimatum with that offered a good, face-saving way out. Just as we see with the Clintons, corrupt, evil people don’t always get the punishment they deserve. Sometimes, the best thing you can do is simply to remove them from power.

To summarize, the old America/North Korea paradigm was, “We’ll destroy you. No, wait. We won’t. We’ll pay you off.” The new paradigm is “We’ll destroy you, Kim Jong-un personally, or welcome you and your nation into the fold if you repent and change your ways.”

The old paradigm consistently failed. I’ve never forgotten that it was Hillary Clinton who liked to go around repeating a quotation attributed variously to Einstein, Mark Twain, and Chinese sages: “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.” That’s what we were doing. The new paradigm, on the other hand, might well work.

I believe there is nothing unusual about Trump’s solicitude for Regep Tayip Erdogan.

Was Wittes also complaining back when Obama buddied up to Erdogan (emphasis mine):

[Fareed Zakaria] But have you been able to forge similar [good] relationships with foreign leaders? Because one of the criticisms people make about your style of diplomacy is that it’s very cool, it’s aloof, that you don’t pal around with these guys.

[Obama]I wasn’t in other Administrations, so I didn’t see the interactions between U.S. Presidents and various world leaders. But the friendships and the bonds of trust that I’ve been able to forge with a whole range of leaders is precisely, or is a big part of, what has allowed us to execute effective diplomacy.

I think that if you ask them, Angela Merkel or Prime Minister Singh or President Lee or Prime Minister Erdogan or David Cameron would say, We have a lot of trust and confidence in the President. We believe what he says. We believe that he’ll follow through on his commitments. We think he’s paying attention to our concerns and our interests. And that’s part of the reason we’ve been able to forge these close working relationships and gotten a whole bunch of stuff done.

Incidentally, it’s been on Trump’s watch that Erdogan’s party just suffered a stunning election defeat in Istanbul. Coincidence? Maybe. Or maybe people around the world are seeing that they can vote to change the paradigm.

I believe there is nothing unusual about Trump’s solicitude for Mohammed Bin Salman.

I believe that too. The Muslim world has a huge schism: Shiite versus Sunni Islam. Iran, which has been in a constant state of deadly war against us for 40 years represents the Shiite influence around the world. Saudi Arabia is the center of Sunni Islam, especially because it controls Mecca. Both are nasty places. Both subordinate women, kill gays, kill Christians, and kill Jews.

Sometimes, though, in the world of geopolitics, you end up making common cause with nations that aren’t very nice. As the old saying goes, “the enemy of my enemy is my friend.” That’s why Israel, which Iran has threatened to destroy, has good working relationships with Saudi Arabia. And that’s why we have to have a good working relationship with Saudi Arabia.

More than that, Mohammed bin Salman is a reformer. He’s still a Saudi, which helps explain why he may have been behind the bungled assassination of the completely awful, anti-American, pro-radical Islami Kashoggi dude. I’m not giving him a pass for the killing, but it was a very Middle Eastern way of dealing with someone viewed as an existential threat.

But again, MBS is a reformer. I wrote about him a year and a half ago:

If Prince Mohammed bin Salman can avoid assassination (and I devoutly hope he can), he is a true reformer. He is trying to upgrade women’s status, he is purging the most corrupt members of the royal family and, most importantly, he is behind the outreach to Israel. There have been rumors that a member of the House of Saud made a secret trip to Israel and, assuming that rumor is true, Prince Salman is the best bet.

If you’re interested in more details about Salman’s reforms, you can read more of what I wrote here.

Also, for a little perspective, don’t forget that Obama gave nasty Iran pallets of cash and permission to go nuclear, even though Iran never backed off from its cruel practices within its borders or its avowed war on America (a war that has played out through terrorist attacks as well as the deaths of hundreds of American troops in Iraq).

I believe that it makes a great deal of sense to tweet belligerently about Iran and also tweet one’s doubts and hestitancy about military action.

Once again, Wittes and I find ourselves in agreement. Trump’s strategy is brilliant. I did a short version in a tweet:

I wrote about Trump’s smart strategy at greater length here:

Trump cultivates a different, albeit equally unpredictable and dangerous, image: He’s the attack dog, constantly barking ferociously, anxious to charge his enemies and rip out their jugulars. The only thing holding him back is the leash that his more mature advisers are able to tug on, just barely, in order to restrain his killer, otherwise-unmanageable instincts.

[snip]

With the events of the past 24 hours, Trump just sent a clear message to the Mullahs: “If it were entirely up to me, the mad dog, any time you cross me in any way, you will die. This time, you got lucky because my advisers were just barely able to hold on to my leash; next time, I guarantee you, you won’t be so lucky.” If that is indeed the message Trump sent and the Mullahs received, it’s a good disincentive for calculating killers who, like so many of the men on death row, are happy meting out death to others but are incredible cowards when they are called to face the Grim Reaper.

[snip]

Meanwhile, Scott Adams saw an even more brilliant spin to Trump’s conduct over the last 24 hours. (You can hear what he has to say here.) My potted summary is that (a) the U.S. was probing Iran’s defenses and a single drone, no matter how expensive, was a small price to pay for that information; (b) Trump forced the Mullahs to imagine their own deaths (which is kind of the same point I was making); and (c) by saying that the deaths of 150 civilians was what dissuaded Trump from acting this time, Trump sent the message to ordinary Iranians that he cares more about their lives than their own rulers do. Combine that with the crushing economic pressure Trump has placed on Iran since he jettisoned Obama’s awful agreement, and you’ve got the Mullahs thinking very carefully about what to do next.

You can read more of what I wrote here.

Wittes wrapped up his tweet storm by sarcastically stating the opposite of everything he believes about Russiagate. It’s hard even to know where to begin addressing his statements, because so much of what he says is inane, disproven, irrelevant, or (I believe) about to be disproven big time. I’ll just throw out a few Russiagate points to emphasize how Wittes fails to prove that Republicans and conservatives live in a world of Orwellian Doublethink. Instead, it is Wittes who lives in a world in which Leftism has deprived him of even the ability to engage in the most basic, functional “singlethink.”

I believe that the whole Russia connection story is “fake news” designed to cover up an embarrassing electoral loss on the part of the Democrats.

I believe there is nothing unusual about Michael Flynn’s dealings with the Russian government.

I believe there is nothing unusual about Carter Page’s dealings with the Russian government.

I believe there is nothing unusual about Paul Manafort’s dealings with the Russian government.

I believe there is nothing unusual about George Papadopoulos’s dealings with a cutout for the Russian government.

I believe there is nothing unusual about Russia’s setting up a secret line of communication to the Trump administration through Erik Prince, founder of Blackwater and brother of a cabinet secretary.

I believe there is nothing unusual about Jared Kushner’s meeting with a sanctioned Russian bank while working for his father-in-law’s transition. I believe that kind of thing happens all the time in all transitions.

I also believe there was nothing unusual about having a member of a Hungarian extremist party working in your White House while he was resolving a pending gun charge for trying to bring a handgun onto an airplane. I think his wife should be press secretary for a federal agency.

I believe there was no collusion.

I believe there was no obstruction.

I believe Robert Mueller has conflicts of interests because he used to be a member of the president’s golf club.

I also believe he absolutely cleared the president of any whiff of a suggestion of wrongdoing.

I also believe you can’t trust a word of his report because he ran a WITCH HUNT!

I believe Jim Comey is a treasonous liar.

I believe John Brennan is a treasonous liar.

I believe Jim Clapper is a treasonous liar.

I also believe Don McGahn is a liar—and a bad lawyer.

I believe real lawyers don’t take notes.

I believe Jeff Sessions left the president on an island.

I believe in insurance policies.

And yes, I believe that Barack Hussein Obama wire tapped Trump Tower.

I believe Devin Nunes was merely conducting an impartial investigation when he came across information the President needed to know about and that he therefore raced over to the White House to inform him of his discovery.

I believe any patriot would have done the same.

And I believe that stopping briefly before going in and before coming out of the White House to tell the press all about it is perfectly consistent with complaining about leaks.

I believe it makes all the sense in the world to rush over to the White House to inform the President of material you learned from the White House.

I believe that leaks are the real story.

I believe the president has fully cooperated with investigators.

I also believe in investigating the investigators.

Regarding the Mueller report, there’s no doubt that he staffed his team with hardcore Democrats. They worked for Dems, donated to Dems, partied with Dems, and wept when Hillary lost. I don’t know about you, but that strikes me as indicative of bias.

There’s also no doubt that, try as they might, that Dem affiliated team was unable to find any evidence tying Trump or his family to Russian efforts to affect the outcome. There’s also no doubt that the report missed a few Russia-relevant points. Thus, (a) the report did not challenge then-President Obama’s peculiar disinclination to block known Russian interference in the 2016 election and (b) the report sidestepped entirely that Hillary commissioned and paid for the Steele Dossier, which was predicated almost entirely information that Hillary’s agent avidly sought out from . . . Russia!

And of course, we know that, although Mueller couldn’t find evidence that Trump or his team colluded with Russia, there was good evidence that Hillary and the Dems colluded, and that people in the FBI, DOJ, CIA, and NSA violated protocol and laws to spy on Trump. It was this failure to bring down Trump on collusion that led Mueller to try to imply that Trump was guilty of criminal obstruction. (I’ve detailed here how Mueller perverted the statutory language to try to weasel his way into this one.)

Moreover, at a very basic level, it’s ethically improper and morally wrong for a prosecutor to smear someone for wrongdoing when the prosecutor admits he doesn’t even know if there’s enough evidence for a basic wrongdoing case. In America, people are not required to prove their innocence to the public. Instead, if the prosecutor believes he has the goods on someone, the prosecutor is required, using due process, to prove that person’s guilt.

On a more interesting level, remember that Trump knew all along that he was innocent of colluding with Russian and understood that he was being investigated and harassed by the same people who engaged in illegal spying. Seen in this light, it’s pretty hard to accuse Trump of obstruction of justice when he fired a corrupt FBI head (who lied to Trump’s face) and fulminated about the abuse he’s receiving, even as he produced millions of documents and hundreds of witnesses.

Regarding the Trump Tower eavesdropping, there’s no longer any question that, through mass unmasking and FISA applications that were predicated upon the Steele dossier (a document even the FBI admitted was not credible and was entirely unsourced), the Obama administration was listening in on Trump Tower.

There’s no question that Manafort, who worked for the Trump campaign for only a few months, was a sleazy lobbyist who, like his fellow sleazy lobbyists, the Democrat-supporting Podesta brothers, didn’t properly registered his dealings with Ukraine. He also cheated on his taxes. He also didn’t do anything with Russia.

Jim Clapper is indeed a liar. He’s been caught in several blatant lies. These are documented here and here, for example. Brennan lied too, both during the Obama administration and during Russiagate.

In any event, the known facts about Russiagate are what they are. What I’m looking forward to is hearing from Barr and the Inspector Generals. I happen to believe that we’ll have more than enough evidence to show that the Obama administration spied on an opposing political party’s presidential campaign. What’s going to come out in the future is the dirty details about what people did, what they knew, and when they knew it. For me, the next year is going to be all popcorn all the time.

Finallyl, when it comes to Witess’s last two tweets, I agree with him wholeheartedly:

I believe that no president has ever been treated more unfairly than Trump has.

And yet, I still believe that Donald J. Trump will Make America Great Again.
Don’t you?

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