The U.S. Intelligence Community’s (IC) public report on Russia’s Putin-ordered hacking of the computers of the Democratic National Committee reads like one of those papers that a lazy or doped-up freshman buys from an online research shop and submits in hopes of scoring a C or D. Anyone worth the title of intelligence officer — even a half-assed old bureaucrat like me — could have written a more compelling paper based exclusively on newspaper articles, conjectures, OpEds, and the hysterical fantasies about “the mortal threat” posed by Russia that have been concocted by Senators McCain and Graham, and sung by the one-note, Neocon choir they lead.
The U.S. abstention on the UN Security Council’s resolution condemning Israel’s building of settlements in the West Bank was absolutely the right action, but it was taken for wrong, sophomoric, and really rather dastardly reasons.
Mr. Trump, stop being played as a dumb ass by Jewish-Americans. Every American soldier, Marine, and U.S. civilian who has died or been wounded or maimed since Osama bin Laden declared war on the United States in 1996 has been the victim — in significant part — of the record of slavish and largely unquestioning U.S. support for Israel’s national security interests.
For both the individual and the nation, America’s Founders believed, it is necessary to regularly look around and ask why what is being done is being done, this to ensure that genuine interests are being addressed. For an individual such a review may lead to an assessment that all is well, or it may detect a need to change course, perhaps a decision to quit smoking, to recant support for the Boston Red Sox, or to refuse to hold your tongue for fear of hurting daintily effete sensibilities.
Because, Mr. Trump, you will set your own foreign policy, the main tasks for the next secretary of state will be to execute that policy and to purge the Department of State of those who have, for so many decades, championed the causes of foreign countries and have plied those foreigners with taxpayer money that should have been spent at home. In simple terms, if American taxpayer money is to be spent to make life better for people, those people can only be Americans.
In view of the foregoing budding reality, and the long string of disasters that have preceded it, there never has been a better time for the U.S. national government to make a clearly America-First decision to complete the Mosul operation and then withdraw all U.S. troops, aircraft, and private contractors from Syria and Iraq. That action will let the nations from Europe, the Levant, and the Arab Peninsula who have what America has not — genuine life-and-death national interests in the ultimate outcome there – continue the war until they are successful or until they perish.
Until inaugurated on 20 January 2017, Mr. Trump would be well advised to follow the pre-inaugural behavior of one of his predecessors, a fellow New Yorker named Franklin Delano Roosevelt. From November, 1932, until his inaugural on 4 March 1933, FDR refused to make any public statement that would tie him to the floundering policies of Herbert Hoover’s government. Roosevelt was about to undertake the monumental task of trying to get America out of still deepening economic depression and wanted no association with the administration that Americans — rightly or wrongly — perceived as the cause of their economic misery. FDR resisted requests for supportive statements from the Hoover administration and defied the bashing he received from parts of the media for not speaking out on the economy and the worsening banking crisis.
There clearly is a good deal of malign foreign intervention occurring in the 2016 presidential election, but it is not coming from Russian President Putin and his intelligence services. It is coming, rather, from Israel, and it is being executed through that country’s legion of disloyal U.S. citizens, be they Israel-Firsters, Neoconservatives, AIPAC’ers, or that steadily filling sty of war-loving foreign policy gurus and general officers that hate Trump.
A few weeks ago, a reader of this blog sent a comment saying that perhaps our republic is just finally “fizzling out”, as have almost all of history’s previous republic’s. I did not answer this cogent note at the time because I wanted to think about it. Little did I then imagine that so much new data would appear since the reader’s comment that, at least in my mind, makes the fizzling option seem all too real. The days pass and the picture gradually fills in, and the fuller and more complete it gets the louder the fizzling becomes. But there is a last-resort option for Americans, one that has strong precedent and sanction in the republic’s history, tradition, and founding documents.
Imagine that naughty Mr. Trump having the nerve to suggest the 2016 presidential election is rigged. Most in the mainstream media and the Democratic party establishments are now in a high, Captain Renault-like faux dudgeon over Trump’s assertion. Their noisy anger and syrupy, patriotic-sounding rejection of the fact that the vote is clearly rigged serve to do only two things: (a) validate Trump’s claim, and (b) confirm the voters’ growing suspicion that they are again being had by the powerful, wealthy, and tyrannical political elite that hates everything about them except for the money that they can take from their pockets. Trump must stand by this accurate assessment of this year’s rigged presidential election, no matter how much the media and Democratic hounds — and probably some similarly slobbering Republicans — bay for him to recant and repent.
The chairman of the House Intelligence Committee says he wants the Obama administration to turn over the papers of Usama bin Laden to his Committee by 11 October 2016, or he will issue a subpoena for them. He believes they will make a lie of the Obama administration’s claim that al-Qaeda was all but destroyed and bin Laden was isolated from his organization when he was killed in Abbottabad, Pakistan in May, 2011.
The media yesterday, in wake of the Islamist attacks in New York, quoted Hillary Clinton as promising “resolve” (1) in the fight against Islamism. She did not promise U.S. victory, annihilation of the foe, an end to war-causing interventionism, an effective and reliable domestic defense, or an end to the waste of American military and civilian lives. “Resolve”, you may have noticed, is what America has had as a policy for the Islam war from the presidencies of Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, and Barack Obama. America has been led with “resolve” in this war since 1996, and it is leading the republic to calamity.