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Total number of comments: 11 (since 2017-04-23 23:22:55)

del berton

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  • Turks Threaten al-Assad if he sends Army to Defend Syrian Kurds
    • And meanwhile, the regime launched another murderous air attack against civilians - this report puts the latest death count over 100. I watched the streamed session from the Munich security conference. How Sergey Lavrov can maintain that Assad is a legitimate leader is bewildering beyond belief. Of course, we're all numb to this by now. But one day, maybe, an international tribunal will be able to hold some of the participants accountable. Probably not - but I hold out hope.

      link to

  • What Does Netanyahu Corruption Case tell us about Trump's Fate?
    • In both examples, you have rightwing leaders who have whipped up resentments by targeting the press as a scapegoat and exploiting ethnic differences to bring their bases to a boil. Both also are in hot water due to investigations that are turning up new evidence of wrongdoing. And again, both Trump & Bibi demonstrate contempt for democratic processes that they dismiss as ginned-up conspiracies. Their fates now depend on the willingness of their citizenries to support the rule of law.

  • Syria: War is over at the Center, but Powers nibbling at Edges
    • "They should not be confused with a bigger phenomenon, of major war."

      True enough but this region is so volatile that things could easily spin out of control. Waiting to hear the final - and accurate - story about what happened near near Al Tabiyeh. But there are reports today that a number of Russian mercenaries attacking US-backed Kurds got blown to bits by an American airstrike. Nobody of sane mind wants this to escalate but......

  • Russia warns Israel on Syria strikes, danger to Russian Troops
    • I know that some genuflect before Putin as the master chess player - and compared with our current POTUS, I suppose that claim has validity for now. But Russian policy in the region sounds confused. Does Putin really want to put his troops in harm's way in order to allow Iran to pursue its anti-Israel foreign policy? That's only going to expose Russian troops & advisors to unnecessary risks. The region is volatile enough without Iranian meddling. Reasonable to expect that message made its way from the Kremlin to Tehran.

  • Russia-aided Syria shoots down Israeli F-16 after downing of Iranian Drone
    • Something's odd here. Why would Iran send a drone into Israel, knowing that the IDF would shoot it down and then retaliate? Were they looking for a "trophy" event to boast about the next day during their commemoration of the Iranian revolution? Or did someone screw up and make a mistake? They paid a price in the battering delivered to Syrian ground batteries. Just doesn't seem to advance anyone's interests here.

  • Top 5 Economic Disappointments of the Trump Regime (so far)
    • As everyone with half a brain keeps reminding us, the stock market is not the economy. Unfortunately, that truism has eluded Mr. Trump. What galls me is that the first year's gains in the economy have little to do with the new administration's policies. Trump inherited a strengthening economy from Obama, a fact he has no gracelessly ignored. I'll concede that Trump has had two big impacts on the stock market. One, he has eviscerated many regulations. I don't view this as a long-term good but it's something that Wall Street and the business community view as a short-term gain. And then there's the tax overhaul which paves the way for a massive wealth transfer to Corporate America and the 1% crowd. The expectation of its passage helped juice markets during the course of 2017 but it was passed too late in the year to have any discernible impact on the economy. Heading into 2018, lower rates on repatriation, etc. ought to help big companies. But none of this does anything to impact productivity rates and there's the likelihood that the Fed will need to tighten at least 3, perhaps 4 times this year. Long-story, short, markets aren't likely to crash completely, a la the 1930s, but gains from this point are likely to be limited. If that's the case, I wonder whether our credit-grabbing POTUS will tout the market's performance in his future pitstops.

      Up the staircase, down the elevator.

  • Cherry-Picking Intel, Nunes and the Iraq War Disaster
    • Good insight. You could probably publish a full-blown magazine piece on "cherry picking and its discontents" as it pertains to foreign policy & national security. In fact, why don't you? :)

  • Russia accuses US of destabilizing Syria with Kurdish-Turkish Clash
    • Trump is obviously outsourcing this to Tillerson but how does this new strategy match with his professed campaign ambition to reduce the US global footprint? It's clear that we don't have enough resources on the ground to make this work. I'd love to believe in sugar fairies but the "policy" is just more wishful thinking. Sounds like a recipe for a future quagmire. Hope I'm wrong.

  • White Nat'list Trump Adviser Miller Bounced from CNN after Sit-in
    • If I might use your post as an excuse to offer praise for the much-maligned "MSM." OK, granted, big journalistic pubs like CNN, the NYTimes and the WaPo have made their fair share of mistakes with sloppy, sometimes inaccurate coverage in the last couple of decades. And they've been rightly dunned for their screw-ups. But we shouldn't remain so mired in the past that we refuse to recognize change. All of the above orgs have done some stellar work pushing back against the current regime and helping keep the public informed. In this case, kudos to Jake Tapper who demonstrated that a TV journalist with balls can respectfully but aggressively check the lies that routinely fly out of the mouths of various White House officials.

      This is why a free press matters.

  • Nations of World at UN Humiliate Trump w/ Massive vote for Palestinians
  • As Scientists March, Will Trump give away US Science Lead to China?
    • Did anyone in their right minds ever think that we'd one day be in the situation where scientists actually need to hit the streets of America to make the point that science matters?

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