Closing Thought–16Apr18

For about a 2 weeks the Palestinians in Gaza have been protesting on the border with Israel……massive non-violent protests by Palestinians…..and the MSM is doing their part to protect Israel by not reporting these protests….

The MSM will make it a headline if a Palestinian attacks an Israeli with a knife…..but NOTHING is reported about the Israelis arresting children some as young as 11 years old or the deaths of protesters for throwing a stone or the theft of land or the destruction of crops….none of this is worthy for the MSM.

One and only one journalist has stepped up and do what others are refusing to do…….

MSNBC news anchor Chris Hayes is receiving plaudits from human rights defenders and other progressive journalists after airing a segment on Wednesday night which offered a rare example of a major U.S. cable news outlet providing critical coverage of Israeli crimes against Palestinians.

While most network and cable news outlets have either ignored the story, or offered uncritical or equivocated coverage, of last Friday’s mass shooting of Palestinian protesters along the Gaza border by Israeli troops, Hayes’ segment included a harsh condemnation of the disproportionate, unjustifiable, and “unconscionable” use of force.

MY hat is off to Chris Hayes and he has a new follower… he needs to do a critical report on the BDS and the banning of the action by some states……

More news that does not usually make it into the evening news…..

 Yaser Murtaja had often filmed from the sky, but he never lived to fulfill his dream of flying on an airplane through the clouds.

The young journalist shot drone images and video for Ain Media, a small Gaza-based news agency he started five years ago. Just two weeks ago, he posted an aerial photo of Gaza City’s port on Facebook. “I wish that the day would come to take this shot when I’m in the air and not on the ground,” he wrote. “My name is Yaser Murtaja. I’m 30 years old. I live in Gaza City. I’ve never traveled!”

It was one of his last posts.

It appears that protesting civilians need to be handled by missile firing drones…..

At least 21 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli forces since they started Land Day protests last Friday — An Israeli air raid killed another Palestinian protester near the Gaza Strip‘s border on Thursday, Palestinian health officials said … The death brings the total number of Palestinians killed in the last week at 21. The mass protests, called “the Great March of Return”, were organised by civil society groups and supported by all political factions to call for the right of return of Palestinian refugees. It marked the beginning of a six-week sit-in, starting on Land Day, an event that commemorates six Palestinian citizens of Israel who were shot dead by Israeli forces after protesting the government’s confiscation of large swaths of Palestinian land on March 30, 1976. The sit-in ends on May 15, or Nakba Day, which will commemorate 70 years since the ethnic cleansing of 750,000 Palestinians by Zionist militias from their villages and towns….

It will be interesting what it will take for the media to actually cover news……

1917–Why US Went To War

For about 4 years I have been writing about the one war that most Americans have tried to put out of their memories….The Great War…..World War One.

First just what made the US feel that fighting in World War One was a necessity?

History books would have pupils believe that it was the sinking of the Lusitania which killed 128 Americans…..

A whole lot of sources say that the main reason for the US joining WWI was the attack on the British ocean liner, RMS Lusitania on May 7, 1915, which left 1,200 people―including 128 Americans―dead. That, however, is not the case. The sinking of Lusitania is one of the many reasons that eventually led to the US joining this war. The attack on Lusitania took place in 1915, but the US declared war on Germany only in 1917.

Many of us history wonks point to the Zimmerman Telegram as the cause that lead to the US entering to WW1…….

This ploy came to light when the British naval intelligence, on January 19, 1917, intercepted a telegram sent by the German Foreign Minister, Arthur Zimmermann to the German Ambassador in Mexico City. In return, the Germans were to help the government of Mexico to recover the territories of Texas, New Mexico, and Arizona that they had ceded to the US in the aftermath of the Mexican-American War.

After a brief hesitation fearing that the Germans would come to know that they had broken their code, the Brits handed this telegram to the United States on February 24. The same was eventually published in the newspapers, and that played a crucial role in changing the public opinion in the US.

Is that the reason Wilson felt the need to fight in an European war?

(i) Some say that too much was at stake for the US on the economic front. They had already invested over $2 billion in the war, and the chances of recovering this money would have become bleak, in the event of a loss for the Allied Forces.

(ii) Some argue that by then, it had started to look like the Germans were going to be defeated, and the US didn’t want to miss the opportunity to pitch itself as the savior of democracy.

(iii) Then there is a third lot who believe that it was Britain who manipulated the US into joining the war by strategically timing the Zimmermann telegraph revelation.

Nevertheless, we often state that the US joined WW1 on April 6, 1917 after a nod from Congress. That, however, was the moment when the US had officially joined the war. Unofficially, it had become a part of the conflict the moment President Wilson placed the US navy personnel on civilian ships to protect them from the German attacks, citing an archaic anti-piracy law. In accordance to the International law, this step in itself constituted an act of war.

Whatever the true reason for our entry the result was to change the US and the world forever…..

Part Two of this post will be the debate on whether to fight or to stay neutral…..(coming soon to  blog near you)……

Syria: Empire Strike Back!

Over the weekend the US and its allies the UK and France hit the country of Syria…..below is the transcript of the speech announcing the raid (it is in the Times of Israel after all that is who’s ass we are protecting away)…..

And then after the attacks the president went on air to call it “Mission Accomplished” that seems to be the favorite phrase for Repubs these days (circa 2003)…..

President Trump trotted out a familiar presidential phrase Saturday morning to praise the Friday night strikes on Syria: “Mission Accomplished!” The phrase came at the end of a tweet in which Trump hailed “a perfectly executed strike last night.” He also thanked France and Britian “for their wisdom and the power of their fine Military,” adding, “Could not have had a better result.” A second tweet praised the US military, which he said would soon be “the finest that our Country has ever had,” thanks to “the spending of billions of fully approved dollars.”

In an address to the nation Friday night, Trump said the US and its allies were punishing Syria for a chemical attack on its civilians, and on Saturday, Syria and backers Russia and Iran condemned the airstrikes and warned of unspecified payback. The UN Security Council was expected to meet Saturday to discuss the matter at the request of Russia. During the assault, the Navy launched more than 100 Tomahawk missiles from destroyers in the Mediterranean, while Air Force B-15 bombers dropped JASSM “standoff” missiles for the first time in combat, reports the AP. Russia claims that Syria shot down 71 of 103 cruise missiles.

Hopefully they will release photos of the damage as they did with the first Trump strike last year and we will see if they were as unaffected as last years.

Personally, I am not sure that we hit the right people….I mean just because the president said it was them does not make it so…..why the rush to attack?

President Trump ordered airstrikes on Syria as a team of experts from the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons was about to arrive on Saturday to determine whether a chemical weapons attack had even occurred.

President Donald Trump on Saturday (Syria time) ordered air strikes against Syria in retaliation for an alleged chemical weapons attack last weekend outside Damascus.

So basically we attacked because someone (probably Israel) said that Assad used CWs….is that about it?

A ‘Realist’ National Security

I know that I do not like our president and it comes through in my posts….but even though that is true I try to give his policies the benefit of the doubt….

Recently Trump’s National Security Strategy was released and I was not too kind to its content…..but you ca-n read all about it…..

After I posted my critique on the release I read another opinion on the NSS….it is sorta positive so in fair play I offer it up to my readers for their consideration….

THE HALLMARK of the Donald Trump administration’s National Security Strategy (NSS), which was released in December, is the idea of “principled realism.” This marks a decided shift from the policies of Trump’s two immediate predecessors. President Bush, with his expansive freedom agenda, set a high priority on the use of U.S. power to promote liberty and democracy. President Obama, less committed to the idea of American exceptionalism and more doubtful of the value of the American role in the world, sought to disengage and “lead from behind.” The Trump NSS, by contrast, represents a return to realism.

In his valuable book Realpolitik: A History, the British historian John Bew explains that realpolitik, or realism, was not, as often characterized today, an amoral approach to foreign policy. Instead, it arose in the nineteenth century in Germany, where figures such as Ludwig von Rochau, who believed in classical liberalism and who participated in the 1848 revolution, struggled to define a foreign policy that was true to their ideals but also cognizant of the limits of their power vis-à-vis states and empires ruled by authoritarians. As Bew puts it, realists focused on the question of “how to achieve liberal enlightened goals—which included balance and equilibrium—in a world that did not follow liberal enlightened rules.”

You decide which version is the more accurate….I can wait while you do……