Closing Thought–10May18

My doctors visit was just awful….I was scolded for taking 2 pills too many… they want me to give up wine….that may be a request too far…chuq

I watched the landing of the plane carrying the North Korean hostages home……it was a great photo op……

A proud moment for President Trump: Trump, accompanied by Melania Trump, Mike Pence, and Karen Pence, was on hand to welcome three former prisoners back from North Korea at Joint Base Andrews outside Washington early Thursday, the AP reports. Kim Dong Chul, Kim Hak Song, and Kim Sang Duk were released Wednesday after Secretary of State Mike Pompeo met with North Korean officials. The three men arrived at the base at 2:42am on a Boeing C-40 equipped with medical facilities and were taken to Walter Reed National Military Medical Center for evaluation. “This is a special night for these three really great people,” Trump said as he stood on the tarmac with them. He thanked Kim Jong Un and said the North Korean leader “really wants to do something” about denuclearization.

The men “appear to be in good condition and were all able to walk on the plane without assistance,” the State Department said in a statement after the release. When the plane stopped to refuel in Alaska, the three men released a statement thanking the US government, Trump, Pompeo, “and all our families and friends who prayed for us and for our return,” adding: “God bless America, the greatest nation in the world.” All three men had been serving sentences of at least a decade in labor camps, Newsweek reports. Kim Sang Duk, also known as Tony Kim, and Kim Hak Song are university professors who were arrested a year ago and accused of trying to subvert the regime. Kim Dong Chul, a pastor, had been detained since October 2015. In 2016, he was sentenced to 10 years of hard labor for espionage.

Now that they are safely home I would like to ask……what the Hell were they doing in North Korea?  I thought there was a travel ban for North Korea.  Did they wake up one morning and decide to press their luck and venture into North Korea knowing full well what would most likely happen to them?  I mean we have plenty of examples of the sentence for foreigners in North Korea.

Again what the Hell were they doing there?  Is there any consequence for failing to observe the ban?  Please let’s not call them “heroes”…I am weary of that title being a catch all for every situation…this is not one of those situations.

These are questions that seem to slip everyone’s mind at times like this…..

On a Final Note:  Trump has told the world where and when the Korean summit will be held……

The time and date are set: President Trump will meet with North Korea’s Kim Jong Un in Singapore on June 12. “We will both try to make it a very special moment for World Peace!

Oh goody……more photo ops and Twitter fodder…..the MSM will have a field day with speculation……this meeting should produce nothing but media ratings.


“Peace In Our Time”

The famous words uttered by UK PM Chamberlain after the peace deal he brokered with Hitler back in the 1930’s.  And it did NOTHING to prevent war or secure a peace.

It makes me think when I hear about the possibility of an agreement between North and South Korea…..could this be the legacy that is needed for a Trumpian win?

It would go a long way for a more positive outlook in the future….but why on the Peninsula and not anywhere else?  An interesting question that more people should ask…..

Even while the Trump administration looks increasingly likely to withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal on May 12, it is simultaneously preparing for an historic summit with North Korea’s Kim Jong-un, as part of an effort to negotiate a nuclear deal with Pyongyang. This contradictory, disjointed approach to non-proliferation is consistent with the style of a leader like President Trump, who seems to view foreign policy as a random collection of individual business deals rather than a single grand coherent strategy with an overarching goal; more often than not, there seems to be a lack of strategic linkages to US national interests. It is downright peculiar that the Trump administration is actively sabotaging the nuclear deal with Iran while simultaneously engaging in high-level talks with North Korea in an effort to negotiate nuclear constraints.

This process should be given all the optimism we can muster for it is a good start but it must continue….

After that piece I read another interesting article…..why are pundits hating the Korean thing?

According to a recent poll, 88 percent of the South Korean public viewed the recent peace summit between North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and South Korean President Moon Jae-in as a success. In addition, 65 percent of South Koreans trust Kim Jong-un on his pledge to denuclearize, and Moon Jae-in’s approval ratings have shot up to 86 percent. Broadly speaking, recent developments between North and South Korea have been met with widespread optimism and praise from the South Korean public.

“’Yada, yada, yada,’ the perennial hawk Max Boot wrote disparagingly in the Washington Post about the ‘Korea summit hype,’ adding that ‘there is very little of substance here.’ Similar hot takes were offered by Nicholas Kristof and Nicholas Eberstadt in the New York TimesJennifer Rubin in the Washington PostRobin Wright in the New Yorker, and Michael O’Hanlon in The Hill. Their doubts were repeated and amplified as gospel by the usual critics on cable TV.

Keep an eye on FOX if they go against this thing so will Trump…..

NOTE:  I will be AFK (Away From Keyboard) this morning….my doctors want to have a go with me again….I will return as soon as possible….please enjoy your day and your readings….chuq

The New “Communists”

You guys know me if there is a history lesson or a political lesson to be told I am more than happy to give it to you.

Back in the days of the Cold War Eastern Europe was a hot bed of authoritarian Communists….Romania, Bulgaria, East Germany and even Poland had its share of tough Communists …… forward to today and the rise of nationalism in Eastern Europe smacks of the days of Communism……

Call it electioneering, Viktor Orbán style.

In the weeks ahead of Hungary’s parliamentary election on Sunday, postboxes across the country delivered some welcome news — courtesy of the prime minister. One letter informed households that due to a one-time action by the government, their next gas bill would be reduced by roughly €38. Another, delivered to each of the country’s more than 2 million pensioners, contained about €32 in gift vouchers.

Much has been written about the assaults on press freedom and civil society by Central European governments in Budapest and Warsaw. Far less attention has been paid to a fact their critics prefer to elide: They keep winning elections.

There are events unfolding in Europe that could have far reaching consequences………hold your nose to these events.