Standing On The Precipice

It has never been a secret that I am a staunch critic of all the wars that our presidents have thrown the nation into fighting.

Our leaders for the past few decades have bot been shy about throwing the US into a war….most times they could have not been fought but with the use of good propaganda they have convinced the population that those conflicts are absolutely necessary.

And a few of these “small wars” have turned into a national nightmare that has been fought for at least 16 years.

We have a new president and nothing has changed….all the chest thumping and the propaganda are once again in use…..against North Korea, Iran while others are just simmering…..waiting for the proper time to boil over.

Trump’s popularity is suffering a bit and what better way to get back into the good graces of the people?

Trump should be mindful that superficially limited military engagements have a nasty tendency to morph into honest-to-goodness full-blown wars.

President Donald Trump has struggled in his first six months on the job. His signature legislative goals—from Obamacare repeal to the border wall—are stuck in Congress. He has managed to push through some initiatives via executive action, but these have been thwarted or delayed by the courts.

Desperate for a win, the president may be tempted to initiate a war. After all, Trump’s decision to launch missile strikes against Syria in April won him praise and support—even from some of his harshest critics.

Source: Is America Standing On the Precipice of Another War? | The National Interest Blog

If the country is standing there waiting….maybe there is something our president should do before throwing the full weight of the military at a problem.

In a real war, nations or organized non-state actors square off against each other. A metaphorical war is like a real war — after all, that’s what a metaphor is, a way of saying that one thing is like something else — but the enemy isn’t a country or even a single group of Islamic jihadists. It’s some other kind of threat: a disease, a social problem, or in the case of the war on terror, an emotion.

Source: When All the World’s a War… | By Rebecca Gordon | Common Dreams

It is time for the country to demand an end to all these wars!  This country has invested more than enough of our children in the pursuit of war.

STOP IT!  STOP IT NOW!

Closing Thought–18Aug17

After 50 years of conflict!

If anyone can recall our fearless leader said that a Middle East peace deal would be offered in his first days……that did not work out as planned……

By now it is obvious that the “ultimate deal” between Israelis and Palestinians, which President Donald Trump promised in his first days in office, was little more than an optical illusion. A series of conversations with Israeli, Palestinian and diplomatic sources depicts a very different picture. The diplomatic process is bogged down. President Trump is not involved in any way, nor does he have any interest in getting involved. Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas is severely disappointed with the United States, and the US “peace team” has lost what limited credibility it had on the Palestinian side. Meanwhile, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s right-wing government is rubbing its hands eagerly beneath the table and dismissing all the serious concerns that sullied the mood of the past few months. Nothing will happen, because there is nothing there, ministers from the Likud and HaBayit HaYehudi whisper with smug satisfaction. We can all calm down.

I thought then that it was his normal idle promise…..

I have been saying for years that since the US will not step up and help find a peaceful conclusion to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict that the Pals should expand their reach and ask other powerful countries for help….

Maybe someone was listening…..for the Chinese have stepped into the process in the region…..

China’s UN ambassador urged the international community on Monday to support President Xi Jinping’s new four-point proposal to end the decades-old Israeli-Palestinian conflict and establish an independent Palestinian state.

Liu Jieyi said at a news conference that China’s future diplomatic efforts will focus on trying to move toward a negotiated solution based on the four proposals.

Xi signaled China’s stepped-up engagement in the Middle East when he met about two weeks ago in Beijing with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and outlined the plan.

The four points are:

– Advancing the two-state solution based on 1967 borders with East Jerusalem as the capital of a new Palestinian state.

Upholding “the concept of common, comprehensive, cooperative and sustainable security,” immediately ending Israeli settlement building, taking immediate measures to prevent violence against civilians, and calling for an early resumption of peace talks.

– Coordinating international efforts to put forward “peace-promoting measures that entail joint participation at an early date.”

– Promoting peace through development and cooperation between the Palestinians and Israel.

Sounds like every other plan these days…..couldn’t hurt having another player in this game…….

A small step for a large problem…..I wish them luck and success.  chuq

Beginnings Of The American Empire

Yes I am a history geek!  When studying political history one gets some insights into the world of history and the world of politics.

In the very beginning of American history the country held a more isolationists position…..yes we conducted trade with other countries but for the most part we kept to ourselves and did not tamper with others foreign policy.

We fought our wars here and there…but is was not until the late 19th century that the US became an empire with its war with Spain which it won and by winning we gained territory from the loser Spain.

Make NO mistake from that time on the United States of America became an empire….like it or not.

Let the history lesson begin!

On April 25, 1898 the United States declared war on Spain following the sinking of the Battleship Maine in Havana harbor on February 15, 1898. The war ended with the signing of the Treaty of Paris on December 10, 1898. As a result Spain lost its control over the remains of its overseas empire — Cuba, Puerto Rico, the Philippines Islands, Guam, and other islands.

Source: Introduction – The World of 1898: The Spanish-American War (Hispanic Division, Library of Congress)

The war with Spain in 1898 began the US ventures into interventionism…..something that once we started we could never stop.

U.S. Secretary of State John Hay called the Spanish-American War of 1898 a “splendid little war.” Superficially, the description seemed apt. After the battleship Maine mysteriously exploded in Havana Harbor — an incident then blamed on Spain — America went to war, our citizens urged to free Cuba from Spanish rule as well as avenge the Maine. Largely a naval war, an American squadron under Commodore George Dewey destroyed the Spanish squadron at Manila; likewise, the U.S. Navy crushed Spain’s Caribbean squadron off Cuba’s port of Santiago. In each engagement, the United States suffered only one fatality. Things went tougher for American troops in Cuba, where malaria and yellow fever proved as daunting as Spanish bullets. But American schoolchildren would thereafter thrill to tales of Teddy Roosevelt and his “Rough Riders,” and of the famed charge up San Juan Hill. Defeated on land and sea, Spain sued for peace. The war lasted less than four months; our fighting forces distinguished themselves with valor; and the United States, acquiring territory from Puerto Rico to the Philippines, emerged as a “world power.”

Source: Spanish-American War: Trial Run for Interventionism

Welcome to the world of today.

Class dismissed!

How To Ruin An Economy

WE hear a lot about the situation in North Korea and Asia…..there have been many articles written about just what would happen if all these words come pushing and shoving.

But has anyone thought of the consequences to the economy?

Could this be more of a problem that the flying of bullets and missiles?

Finally, someone is looking at the situation in a realistic way.

Full marks for timing, Mr President. Last week marked the 10th anniversary of the start of the biggest financial crisis since the Great Depression, making it an appropriate moment for Donald Trump to threaten North Korea with obliteration.

One of the few achievements Trump can point to in his first six months in office is that shares on Wall Street have been steadily rising since his election victory last October. The “fire and fury” remark and the inevitable counter blast from Kim Jong-un gave the markets pause for thought. But not much more than that.

Source: How Trump v Kim can wreck the world economy without a shot being fired | Larry Elliott | Business | The Guardian

There is always more to a problem than what we hear on the evening news….that is mostly speculation and sensationalism.

We need all aspects of the situation/solution but instead we are fed only that which they want us to know or consider.

Closing Thought–17Aug17

Another US Soldier Dies!

I hate that I must write these types of posts!

More sad news….I reported on Monday about 2 troops that were killed in Iraq.

Now news comes out that a US soldier was killed in Eastern Afghanistan….name is withheld until the family is notified….

One U.S. service member from the Utah National Guard was killed Wednesday during an operation against Islamic State forces in eastern Afghanistan, according to a statement from the Utah National Guard.

Approximately seven U.S. and Afghan forces were also injured in the operation, and were medically evacuated, according to a statement from Operation Resolute Support.

Identification of the service member was pending notification of next of kin, the military said.

“My heart aches for the loss and sacrifice of our members and their families,” Maj. Gen. Jefferson Burton, adjutant general of the Utah National Guard, said in a statement. “I know that what we do is dangerous and important work for our country’s defense, but this realization does little to console me during times of loss such as this.”

Wednesday’s incident brings the number of U.S. troops killed in Afghanistan this year to 11, the same number as were killed in all of 2016 in Afghanistan.
IST offers the family our deepest sympathies for their loss….may he Rest in Peace.

Emotions Are Napping

It appears as if the emotions have finally been silenced a bit….all the chest thumping has subsided….even the threats to Guam….

North Korea’s apparent walk back of its threat to fire missiles near the U.S. territory of Guam could mean military tensions with the United States have been diminished—or at least postponed.

Or it could indicate that much of the seeming escalation in tensions between the two sides last week was more rhetoric than reality to begin with. State media reported Tuesday that Kim Jong Un, the North Korean leader, made the decision following a meeting with military commanders, but he reserved the right to fire the Hawsong-12 near Guam if the U.S. grows “more reckless.”

But that does not mean the situation has abated….

Let’s say that somewhere someone has a good idea and there is an actual treaty with the North Koreans…..what would it look like?

After weeks of belligerent rhetoric, North Korea took a pause Tuesday. But where is the mercurial Kim Jong Un headed next? U.S. officials are debating whether he may want direct talks with Washington about a formal treaty to replace the 1953 armistice agreement that ended the Korean War.

The U.S. has been pursuing a dual path, threatening military conflict (semi-believably because of President Trump’s verbal thunderbolts) while also urging stabilization of a denuclearized Korean Peninsula. The diplomatic trick here is simultaneously reassuring North Korea, China, South Korea and Japan that their vital interests would be protected.

Source: What a Permanent Treaty With North Korea Might Look Like | RealClearWorld

There is an optimistic look at the future….but what will it look like if all efforts fail and we stumble into another war on the Korean peninsula?

The duelling words between President Trump and Kim Jong-un of North Korea has led to much speculation about whether war is looming.

War does seem unlikely, given that several observers have noted that the US forces in Korea and the Pacific remain in a peacetime posture, but what would be the tells that war is coming?

The Intelligence Community, our frontline observers, watch for indications and warning (I& W), specific actions that warn of an attack. What would I&W look like applied to our side to allow outsiders without security clearances to anticipate a possible conflict? The following list is based on preparations the United States took in conflicts over the last quarter century—Desert Storm in 1991, the bombing of Serbia in 1999, and the invasion of Iraq 2003— as well as what we know about the main Korean war plan, called OPLAN 5027.

Source: Korean War 2.0? The Signs To Watch « Breaking Defense – Defense industry news, analysis and commentary

A look at both sides of this situation….which would be the most preferable?

I think that is about enough with North Korea…..that is until the next mash-up….and it is only a heart beat away.

How To Handle The North Korea Situation

This situation with North Korea is getting a bit redundant…..this will be the last pot for now on NK that is until something new breaks….

I have offered my many opinions on how to handle the North Korean situation….and during those opinions I have had some dolt from the Right go off with something about the situation that has little to nothing to do with the situation.

These people seem to have the same opinion….”nuke ’em all and let God sort them out” mindset.  They offer little as far as an actual idea on how the situation needs to be approached.

First the report that came out over the last weekend……

China’s president delivered a direct message to President Trump: Ease up on the North Korea rhetoric. In a phone call with Trump Friday night, Xi Jinping said he wanted both sides to avoid “words and actions” that would make the situation worse, per the BBC, citing Chinese media. The White House statement on the call said the two leaders agreed that North Korea must stop its “provocative and escalatory behavior,” though it didn’t mention Xi’s plea to Trump as well. The call came after Trump made a series of aggressive statements directed at Pyongyang on Friday, the most recent one saying that the North would “truly regret” any missile launches toward Guam. The North, meanwhile, ramped up its own rhetoric on Saturday with a boast that 3.5 million people have volunteered to join the military to fight the US, reports the Washington Post.

“All the people are rising up across the country to retaliate against the US thousands of times,” said a newspaper. Meanwhile, China isn’t the only nation worried. Japan installed missile interceptors, South Korea is speeding up the process needed to deploy the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) missile-defense system, and Germany’s Angela Merkel voiced concern after one of Trump’s tweets, saying, “I consider an escalation of rhetoric the wrong answer,” per the Guardian. Despite his aggressive language, Trump also has spoken of a non-military outcome. “Hopefully, it will all work out,” he said Friday. “Nobody loves a peaceful solution better than President Trump, that I can tell you.”

3.5 million have signed up to fight…..now if that report is accurate it is something to think about…..has any American felt such patriotic fervor and signed up?