Closing Thought–28Jan20

A Serious Lack Of Imagination!

By now most will be aware that we have a new a separate military branch, the Space Force…..and just last week the new “logo” was released…..

Notice anything?

The Pentagon’s new US Space Force is not Star Trek’s Starfleet Command, but their logos bear a striking similarity, the AP reports. President Trump unveiled the Space Force logo Friday, writing on Twitter that he had consulted with military leaders and designers before presenting the blue-and-white symbol, which features an arrowhead shape centered on a planetary background and encircled by the words, “United States Space Force” and “Department of the Air Force.” The logo, which bears the date 2019 in Roman numerals, also is similar in design to that of Air Force Space Command, from which Space Force was created by legislation that Trump signed in last month. (See a comparison of the Space Force logo and the Starfleet Command logo here.)

Space Force explained the logo in a statement late Friday: “The delta symbol, the central design element in the seal, was first used as early as 1942 by the US Army Air Forces; and was used in early Air Force space organization emblems dating back to 1961. Since then, the delta symbol has been a prominent feature in military space community emblems.” Space Force is the first new military service since the Air Force was created in 1947. It is meant mainly to improve protection of US satellites and other space assets, rather than to put warriors in orbit to conduct combat in outer space. “After consultation with our Great Military Leaders, designers, and others, I am pleased to present the new logo for the United States Space Force, the Sixth Branch of our Magnificent Military!” Trump wrote. George Takei, who played Mr. Sulu in the original Star Trek TV series and films, tweeted in response, “Ahem. We are expecting some royalties from this.”

First the logo illustrates a serious lack of imagination then secondly…if it is a separate military force why is it labelled with United States Air Force as well?

Well the Trump administration will never be known for its imagination…..anyway.

I Read, I Wrote, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Senate Impeachment Trial–Day 6

It is back to the saga at hand…this time it is the president’s team doing their level best to subvert the course of justice (as they say on Law and Order)…

Day 6 analysis……but first the fall-out of the Bolton thing……

Democrats say new allegations from John Bolton make it essential that witnesses be called to testify in the Senate impeachment trial that resumes Monday. The big question: Will four Republicans—the magic number needed to make it happen—agree? That remains unclear, but the GOP’s Mitt Romney suggests the odds are rising. “It’s increasingly likely that other Republicans will join those of us who think we should hear from John Bolton,” he said, per Politico. “I have spoken with others who have opined upon this.” His comments came in the wake of a report in the New York Timesabout Bolton’s upcoming book. In it, the former national security adviser reportedly asserts that Trump directly linked Ukraine aid to an investigation of the Bidens.

Trump has issued a fresh denial of that. Also Monday, another moderate Republican, Susan Collins, sounded like she was even more squarely in the pro-witness camp. “I’ve always said that I was likely to vote to call witnesses, just as I did in the 1999 Clinton trial,” she said, per the Washington Post. “The reports about John Bolton’s book strengthen the case for witnesses and have prompted a number of conversations among my colleagues.” A third possibility is Alaska’s Lisa Murkowski, notes the Hill, but things get tougher after that. One key Republican to watch is thought to be Lamar Alexander.

The GOP and the president’s team continue their opening remarks…..

The second day of President Trump’s defense in his impeachment trial has resumed in the Senate, though a big new wrinkle has emerged in the form of John Bolton. The former national security adviser’s upcoming book reportedly alleges that Trump directly linked Ukraine aid to an investigation of the Bidens, a development that is raising calls for Bolton to be called as a witness. That won’t be decided until after Trump’s defense team has finished its arguments, which will probably be Tuesday. Coverage:

  • Big name: Kenneth Starr, a member of Trump’s legal team, told senators the charges should be dismissed because Trump did not commit an actual crime, reports the Washington Post. He said that was not true in the impeachment of Bill Clinton, in which Starr played a key role. “The nation’s most recent experience, the Clinton impeachment—even though severely and roundly criticized—charged crimes,” he said. After faulting the House for passing these new articles of impeachment, he added: “I respectfully submit that the Senate should close this chapter, this idiosyncratic chapter, on this increasingly disruptive act.”
  • Dershowitz, too: Another big name on Trump’s team, Alan Dershowitz, is expected to speak Monday and make a similar argument, reports the Hill. (Dershowitz has shifted his thinking on this, having argued the opposite in regard to Clinton back in 1998.)
  • Trump: Speaking to reporters at the White House Monday, Trump called the new Bolton allegation “false,” per the AP. He also said he has not read the manuscript of Bolton’s memoir, which is currently under review by the National Security Council.
  • A block? CNN reports that Republican leaders are working on a strategy to block Bolton’s testimony, in case enough votes surface to call him. The argument is that the Senate is not obligated to look for new evidence to buttress articles of impeachment passed by the House.

Not to worry Day 7 will prove to be less informative than Day 6….but I will be here to let you know what you missed…..

Watch This Blog!

I Read, I Wrote, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Bernie In Iowa

We are only a few short days from the opening salvo of the 2020 elections….Iowa.

This post begins with something for all those that are deathly afraid of a Sanders presidency…….a Letter From Iowa….

I rode back out to Iowa to observe and even participate on behalf of Bernie Sanders’ progressive-populist candidacy in this state’s pivotal first-in-the-nation presidential Caucus. It’s a pivotal moment. A recent Des Moines Register poll has Sanders in lead among Iowa Democratic Party Caucus-goers. CNN just released a poll showing Sanders to be the national Democratic front-runner, three points ahead of ridiculous right-wing Joe “Never Called me Boy” Biden, whose corporatism Bernie has been politely calling out.

The corporate-Democratic Party leadership is in something of a panic. If Sanders wins Iowa and/or New Hampshire, then, under one possible scenario that frightens the party’s capitalist managers, he might well break through the bumbling, deeply conservative mediocrity Biden’s Black voter “firewall” in South Carolina and then roar towards the nomination through Nevada and the “Super Tuesday” (March 3rd) primary states.

A Letter From Iowa

Even Trump has a worry about Bernie…..

Hillary Clinton isn’t exactly bursting with Bernie love—and for President Trump, that could be a bonus. In a recording of a private 2018 dinner, Trump says Clinton might have been harder to beat in 2016 if she had chosen Bernie Sanders as her running mate, Newsweek reports. “Had she picked Bernie Sanders it would’ve been tougher,” says Trump. “He’s the only one I didn’t want her to pick.” Heavy delves deeper into the recording, which includes smatterings of table talk: “But I think Bernie, because all of those people that hated her so much, who voted for me, you know I got 20% of Bernie votes … because of trade. Because he’s a big trade guy … He basically says we’re getting screwed on trade and he’s right.”

“I’m worse than he is,” Trump goes on. “But we can do something about it … I don’t know, he could have, I don’t know.” Saying he didn’t want Clinton to choose Sanders, Trump considers the counter-argument: “Now then you say, people say, ‘No it would have been easier because then, her sort of establishment normal Democrats would have come to me.’ … She may have lost a lot of votes too.” (Hear it here and start at 54:00, though Trump comes in closer to 55:00). The recording—which was released by lawyers for Rudy Giuliani associate Lev Parnas—looks like it was made secretly on a cellphone. Parnas’ attorney says it was made by Parnas associate Igor Fruman.

There is more bad news for Bernie haters……look like he is having a good few weeks in Iowa….(please I am not saying he will be the nominee only that the early news is looking good for him…regardless what the MSM wants you to believe)…..

With only nine days to go in Iowa, a New York Times/Siena College poll of likely caucusgoers has a new frontrunner—and he’s no moderate. The survey of 1,689 registered Iowa voters puts Bernie Sanders in the lead at 25%, ahead of center-left hopefuls and a high-profile liberal. The poll has Pete Buttigieg and Joe Biden sparring at 18% and 17%, respectively, while Elizabeth Warren—who led in an October poll with 22%—has slumped to 15%, and Amy Klobuchar is stuck at 8%. The Sanders surge is reflected in other recent Iowa polls, which CNN crunches down to Sanders at 21% and Biden 19%, followed by Buttigieg (17%), Warren (16%), and Klobuchar (7%).

But Iowa polls can be unreliable at this stage, partly because the caucus process involves two voting rounds at each site, per Politico. What’s more, almost 40% of voters in the Times poll said they might be persuaded to switch to another candidate. And 55% say they’d prefer someone who’s “more moderate than most Democrats,” compared to 38% itching for a more liberal candidate. But if Sanders wins Iowa and New Hampshire, where he also tops the polls, he could gain powerful momentum. “Bernie’s authentic,” says an Evansdale voter. “Pretty much everything he’s saying—I can’t put it better than he can.”

Not to worry if Bernie is not your candidate….the corporate stooge candidates are not far behind….and the corporate media will be doing all they can to see the Bernie is not the nominee….so do not worry the status quo will win.

Be Smart!

Learn Stuff!

VOTE!

I Read, I Wrote, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Iraq: Old Thoughts Are New Again

Since 2003 Iraq has been a thorn in the side of our administrations…..everyone has had a turn at trying to stabilize the country after the invasion and subsequent occupation….one idea that was floated was one by then Senator Biden,,,,break the country into three regions…..https://lobotero.com/2007/06/15/joe-bidens-iraq-plan/

Of course that plan was not favorable basically because a Democrat had come up with it…..and the country sank further further into chaos….so far that the US had send in more troops to bring about stability….a good idea but sadly did not work as planned….out of that chaos grew the barbarous ISIS.

Fast forward to 2020…..the US is being pressured to leave Iraq…..and because of this the idea of sectioning Iraq has once again come to the forefront……

Backed into a corner and influence waning, the United States has in recent weeks been promoting a plan to create an autonomous Sunni region in western Iraq, officials from both countries told Middle East Eye.

The US efforts, the officials say, come in response to Shia Iraqi parties’ attempts to expel American troops from their country.

Iraq represents a strategic land bridge between Iran and its allies in Syria, Lebanon and Palestine.

Establishing a US-controlled Sunni buffer zone in western Iraq would deprive Iran of using land routes into Syria and prevent it from reaching the eastern shores of the Mediterranean.

https://www.middleeasteye.net/news/us-seeking-carve-out-sunni-state-its-influence-iraq-wanes

Speaking of oil……this is how the oil industry is screwing Iraq out of revenue…..https://lobotero.com/2007/03/11/who-gets-iraqs-oil/

Just a little FYI in case you have nothing better to do than learn something.

Something will need to be done since the Iraqis are getting testy about the US leaving their country……

Over 200,000 Iraqis protested against the U.S. military presence in their country on Friday, demanding American forces leave as requested by the Arab nation’s Parliament in early January after President Donald Trump ordered the assassination of Iranian military commander Qasem Soleimani during the general’s visit to Iraq on January 3.

“We don’t need any foreign troops to be in Iraq, we need Iraq for Iraqis,” Hoda Hashimi, an employee in the Ministry of Trade in Baghdad, told the New York Times.

Hashimi added that while U.S. forces are not welcome in the country, the American people in Iraq—most of them there on business—were.

“We don’t want Americans to leave, we want the troops to leave,” said Hashimi. “We want America to support our country but with contracts, not troops.”

https://www.commondreams.org/news/2020/01/24/iraq-iraqis-hundreds-thousands-flood-streets-baghdad-demand-us-military-leave

The chants are getting louder….

Get out, get out, occupier!” was the slogan of the day in Baghdad, where a protest march called by Moqtada al-Sadr drew tens of thousands of demonstrators calling for the withdrawal of US troops from Iraq.

Things are not looking good for the relations with Iraq….

The Trump Administration has suspended all weapons deliveries to Iraq, including the delivery of Sidewinder and Maverick missiles, which were part of $1.8 billion contract signed in 2016. The last shipment was delivered in November.

A US Air Force spokesman confirmed the pause, citing security concerns, and said all personnel support for Iraq’s F-16 planes indefinitely. Iraq has yet to comment on the matter.

This reflects growing US tensions with Iraq, and the Iraqi government’s interest in getting US troops out of the country. The US is threatening sanctions on Iraq for even suggesting expelling them, and military aid cuts are planned. This is likely part of the US cutting their military relationship to try to make Iraq more dependent on them

(antiwar.com)

All this drama between the US and Iraq has the Saudis quaking in their sandals……

Saudi Foreign Minister Faisal bin Farhan al-Saud told CNN on Monday that the Saudi Kingdom opposes the US withdrawing troops from Iraq, even though Iraq’s parliament voted 170-0 to expel them.

Faisal says the Saudis believe that the US was crucial in defeating ISIS, and is a “reliable ally of the Kingdom.” He added the Saudis “work very well with President Trump” on regional security.

(antiwar.com)

The Saudis are afraid if the worse scenario comes about they will have to face the Iranians alone and they are running scared.  The Saudis need the US to protect them from the mean old Iranians.

I Read, I Wrote, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”