Biden Takes On Iran

After the disastrous programs of the Trump years Biden has done little to help the tensions between Iran and the US and its allies….

They, the US, would like to return to the days of the ‘Iran Deal’ and prevent them from getting that much feared nuke weapon.

But yet it is perfectly okay for all nations around the region to possess these horrible weapons. But that is a post for another day.

And a “bi-partisan’ group of lawmakers (they work together when war is involved but not when equality is in question)….have sent a letter to Biden on Iran…..

A group of 140 bipartisan members of the House is urging President Biden to seek a more “comprehensive” agreement with Iran, which means the group of lawmakers opposes a revival of the original 2015 nuclear deal, known as the JCPOA.

In a letter sent to Secretary of State Antony Blinken, 70 Democrats and 70 Republicans said President Biden “must seek an agreement or set of agreements with Iran that are comprehensive in nature to address the full range of threats that Iran poses to the region.”

“As Democrats and Republicans from across the political spectrum, we are united in preventing an Iranian nuclear weapon and addressing the wide range of illicit Iranian behavior,” the letter reads. The effort was organized by Reps. Anthony Brown (D-MD) and Michael Waltz (R-FL).

Bipartisan Group of 140 Lawmakers Urge Biden Not to Rejoin Original Iran Deal

The letter must have worked for the Biden admin has given its word on the issue of the deal…..

State Department spokesman Ned Price said the Biden administration has no plans to make any “unilateral gestures” to jump-start talks with Tehran to revive the nuclear deal, known as the JCPOA.

“We will not offer any unilateral gestures or incentives to induce the Iranians to come to the table,” Price told reporters. “If the Iranians are under the impression that absent any movement on their part to resume full compliance with the JCPOA that we will offer favors or unilateral gestures, well, that’s a misimpression.”

Price was reiterating the administration’s stance that the US will not give Iran relief from crippling economic sanctions before Iran reduces the activity of its civilian nuclear program. Since the US is the party that withdrew from the deal in 2018, Tehran is calling on President Biden to act first. Iranian officials have been clear that they are ready to quickly abide by the limits set by the JCPOA once the US lifts sanctions.

Price also repeated another stance of the administration, that they wish to seek a stricter deal after a revival of the JCPOA. He said if the agreement was restored, it would be a “necessary but insufficient development.”

“Insufficient because we would then seek to lengthen and strengthen the terms of that deal, using it as a platform to negotiate follow-on arrangements to address these other areas of profound concern with Iran’s behavior in the region,” Price said.

(antiwar.com)

Sanctions?

Yeah they are easier than doing real work to find common ground.

Sanctions hurt the average Iranian more than the government…..my thoughts on why sanctions are barbaric…..https://lobotero.com/2020/10/14/sanctions-what-are-they-good-for/

Sadly there is common ground but the war hawks and their owners do not want a deal…..it is more lucrative to keep the pressure on Iran.

Please tell me the change in foreign policy we can expect?

So far it looks the same as it ever was.

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Is Biden Just Stumbling Along?

As his first major foreign policy act Pres. Biden ordered a ‘revenge’ strike at units within Syria…..

President Biden ordered an airstrike in Syria on Thursday, after recent rocket attacks launched on US forces in Iraq. The target was a structure thought to be used for smuggling weapons by two Shia militias backed by Iran, CNN reports. The goal of the US attack was to hurt the militias’ capability of carrying out any more attacks, per Politico, though the site, in the eastern Syrian town of Al Bukamal, has not been tied to the rocket attacks. The Defense Department had not publicly blamed any Iran-backed militias. Last week, per ABC, White House press secretary Jen Psaki said the US “reserves the right to respond in the time and manner of our choosing.”

Was this a return to the old norm?

Is it a preview of what we have in store for our nation….more and a continuation of our endless wars?

US President Biden bellicosely proclaimed, “American is back,” in his major foreign policy priorities speech at the Munich Security Conference on February 19. Repeated twice for effect, Biden signaled the end of the Trump interregnum.

No more assuring words could have been uttered for George W. Bush’s former Defense Secretary Colin Powell and the 70 odd Republican national security officials, who wrote an open letter endorsing Biden out of fear that Trump would upset the bipartisan foreign policy consensus of regime change, forever wars, and the NATO alliance. Republican neo-cons now shelter in the Democrat’s big tent, today’s party of war.

The major difference from his predecessor is that the new US president promises a greater reliance on multilateral diplomacy and international cooperative agreements to achieve US imperial goals. Biden pledged to remain in the World Health Organization and to return to the Paris Climate Agreement, although compliance with the latter is voluntary and Biden defends fracking. After Trump withdrew the US from the UN Human Rights Council three years ago, the US will reengage as an observer. And Trump’s “Muslim ban” was reversed in Biden’s first day in office.

Joe Biden’s US Foreign Policy: Return to the Old Normal?

As I predicted earlier….there will be little change with the Biden presidency….our endless wars will continue to be endless.

The non-partisan Congressional Research Service maintains a list of every “notable” use of U.S. military force abroad. As of June of last year, the list ran on for 46 pages. Last night, President Joe Biden added his first entry when he ordered airstrikes on militia forces on the Iraq-Syria border. What happens next will help determine just how many more pages get added during the rest of the Biden administration. 

While details are still emerging, the basic outlines of the airstrikes appear to be that the president ordered them in retaliation for recent missile strikes on U.S. forces in Iraq, particularly the February 15 strike that killed a Filipino defense contractor and injured a U.S. servicemember in Erbil, Iraq. It’s worth noting that this was seemingly not an isolated incident, with multiple attacks having occurred off and on for some time now on various bases housing U.S. personnel throughout Iraq. 

As is often the case with recent instances of U.S. military force abroad, a debate has quickly emerged on what legal authority such an attack was conducted under and if it complied with international law. The administration claims it acted in self-defense. Multiple members of Congress have weighed in, with some of Congress’s strongest war powers champions either outright rejecting or raising significant concerns about the administration’s claims

Biden’s Syria strikes: A perpetual cycle of endless war

Our weary troops have nothing to look forward from a Biden Admin…..he will do little to end these continuous wars and conflicts….

You would think the the American people would grow weary of our endless adventurism and interventions…..but so far the sound of crickets prevails.

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What To Do In The Middle East

Most regulars know that my studies and career was rooted in the Middle East…..it is time I got back to watching the events in the region.

We have a new president and the question is….will there be an adjustment in the Middle East.

The Brookings Institution offers a few ideas for our new president……

For over a decade, the United States has sought to wind down the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, reduce its military footprint in the Middle East, and redirect scarce resources to Asia. Global and regional trends reinforced this American desire to reduce the priority of the Middle East in its global strategy, and the military “pivot” is well underway. The challenge for American policy is how to protect its remaining and still important interests in that region in an era of austerity and fierce power competition, both in the region and globally. The incoming Biden administration should not waste the window for a reset.

Gulf Arab partners, facing fiscal constraints from lower energy prices and the COVID-19-induced global recession, are more open to conflict resolution in the proxy wars they hagve been fighting across the region. But their relative penury will also impede their ability to invest in stabilizing weaker neighbors, including key states like Jordan and Egypt. Meanwhile, the Islamic Republic of Iran is sanctioned to the hilt, and used to wielding regional influence on the cheap. Thus the balance of power in the region may even favor the Iranians as the pandemic begins to recede. The Biden team must set aside the Trump administration’s fruitless “maximum pressure” in favor of the mix of intelligence cooperation, diplomacy, financial and military tools that can effectively deter or disrupt subversive Iranian activity while incentivizing Tehran’s return to the nuclear negotiating table. And the Pentagon must undertake a zero-based review of its force presence in the Persian Gulf region to ensure it is both efficient and effective in fulfilling its core missions there.

The United States must rebuild what has historically been its most effective tool in the Middle East: diplomacy, especially in advancing conflict resolution. In Yemen and Libya, there might now be opportunities to pull competing regional powers out of the fighting and negotiate power-sharing governments that promote stability and reduce freedom of action for Islamist terrorist movements. Washington cannot let Israelis and Palestinians stew in their stalemated conflict — but rather than trying to reconvene talks, it should take a long-term approach to rebuilding foundations for compromise between the two societies while insisting that they both abjure destabilizing unilateral actions, and work to improve freedom, security, and prosperity for those living with the conflict every day.

Finally, the Biden administration must reestablish clear boundaries in relationships that were deeply unbalanced by President Donald Trump’s careless approach. Israel, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) all have questions about the extent and durability of American security commitments to their neighborhood, and all three prefer to keep the U.S. closely engaged. Washington can pursue necessary de-escalation and nuclear diplomacy with Iran while engaging these key partners about where American interests begin and end, and where partners’ own preferences and behaviors present real obstacles to closer cooperation. As in all healthy relationships, honest communication and clear boundaries are essential to maintain mutual respect and good feeling.

What to do – and what not to do – in the Middle East

I disagree with almost everything that is written by this think tank…..especially the statement on the Israeli/Palestinian problem…..”Washington cannot let Israelis and Palestinians stew in their stalemated conflict — but rather than trying to reconvene talks, it should take a long-term approach to rebuilding foundations for compromise between the two societies while insisting that they both abjure destabilizing unilateral actions, and work to improve freedom, security, and prosperity for those living with the conflict every day.”

Really?

If they want a long term solution then maybe the place to start is with Israel.  The theft of land, destruction of crops, the hijacking of humanitarian funds, the random of harassment and arrests and those damn settlements would be a good start.

None of that means a damn thing….for the Biden admin will do business as it has been done for 50 years….especially in the Middle East.

The Biden admin is change that will not change.

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Iran And The Smell Of War

Only days left in office……would Trump start a war just for the hell of it?

US President Donald Trump could take “reckless” military action against Iran in his final days in office, experts have warned, as tensions between Tehran and Washington mount on the eve of the first anniversary of top Iranian general Qassem Soleimani’s assassination.

Trump has sent B-52s and aircraft group to the Gulf as a preparatory exercise just in case….

It looks like a threat to most…..

No one thought President Donald Trump would leave quietly. But would he go so far as to start a military confrontation with Iran on his way out? 

Recent military movements by the Pentagon in the Middle East (ostensibly to deter Iran from attacking American troops on the anniversary of the assassination of Iranian commander Qassem Soleimani), combined with Israeli media reports that Saudi Arabi and Israel are pressing Trump to bomb Iran before he leaves office, has fueled speculation that Trump may be planning his biggest — and likely most disastrous — stunt yet.

Trump has made more threats of war against Iran than any other country during his four years as President. As late as last month, he ordered the military to prepare options against Iranian nuclear facilities. Though the New York Times reported that Trump’s aides derailed those plans, U.S. troop movements in the past few weeks may suggest otherwise. 

Since October, the Pentagon has deployed 2,000 additional troops as well as an extra squadron of fighter planes to Saudi Arabia. It has also sent B-52 bombers on missions in the Persian Gulf three times, kept the USS Nimitz close to Iran, and announced that it is sending a Tomahawk-firing submarine just outside of Iranian waters. Moreover, Israel — whose officials have confirmed to several U.S. newspapers that it was behind the assassination of Iranian nuclear scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh last month — has sent a nuclear-equipped submarine to the Persian Gulf.

Officially, all of these military maneuvers are aimed at “deterring” Iran, even though Israel assassinated an Iranian official in Iran and not the other way around. “The United States continues to deploy combat-ready capabilities into the U.S. Central Command area of responsibility to deter any potential adversary, and make clear that we are ready and able to respond to any aggression directed at Americans or our interests,” said Marine Gen. Kenneth “Frank” McKenzie, chief of U.S. Central Command, according to the Washington Post.

Iran attack may be next in Trump’s farewell bag of tricks

In response to the US threats Iran has announced the enriching of uranium…..

In the biggest violation yet of an international nuclear agreement, Iran is going ahead with enriching its uranium to 20% purity. A nuclear bomb requires 90% purity, but the Iran nuclear deal of 2015 had limited enrichment levels to less than 4%, the BBC reports. Iran has violated provisions of the deal since President Trump restored sanctions and pulled the US out of the agreement in 2018, such as increasing enrichment of uranium to 4.5%. But 20% enrichment would be the high point since the deal took effect, per NPR. Iran signaled that it would take this step last month. The International Atomic Energy Agency said the enrichment will take place at Iran’s Fordow Fuel Enrichment Plant, which is built under a mountain near the city of Qom.

The agency said its inspectors “have regular access to Fordow,” but Iran has said it will prevent inspections if oil and banking sanctions aren’t lifted by February. The UK, France, Germany, Russia, and China want the nuclear deal fully restored. President-elect Joe Biden has said he’d favor that if Iran is in “strict compliance” with the agreement. And Iranian Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said that if Biden “returns to the situation as it was in 2017, then so will we.” But the agency’s director general said last month that that might not be possible. “I cannot imagine that they are going simply to say, ‘We are back to square one’ because square one is no longer there,” Rafael Mariano Grossi said.

Is this a ply by Iran to stop the US from acting irresponsibly?

Will this announcement be the excuse be used to actually attack Iran?

One finally question what happened?  They will enrich their uranium to 20% and it takes 90% for a bomb….but after all the bullshit spread by warmongers both here and Israel I thought they were already producing nuke weapons…….so does that mean we have been lied to all these years?

If they spy on their best friend could they also incite an attack?

Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif accused Israel of plotting attacks in Iraq against the US to provoke a military confrontation between Iran and the US.

“New intelligence from Iraq indicate that Israeli agent-provocateurs are plotting attacks against Americans—putting an outgoing Trump in a bind with a fake casus belli,” Zarif wrote on Twitter. “Be careful of a trap, @realDonaldTrump. Any fireworks will backfire badly, particularly against your same BFFs,” he added.

Zarif’s tweet came on the eve of the anniversary of the US assassination of Iranian Gen. Qasem Soleimani, which was marked on Sunday. In the weeks leading up to the anniversary, US officials have been warning of imminent Iranian attacks in Iraq. For their part, Iran has urged caution and warned its Iraqi allies not to provoke the US, hoping to avoid a war with the US before Trump leaves office.

An Israeli official dismissed Zarif’s comments. Israeli Energy Minister Yuval Steinitz called the claim “nonsense” in an interview on Sunday. While Israel may not be plotting to attack the US, the Israelis did choose to escalate tensions in the region, being the likely perpetrator of the assassination of Iranian scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh.

(antiwar.com)

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Peace Through Bribery?

I am a cheer leader for diplomacy…I feel that negotiations is far superior than the use of force….but Trump’s idea of diplomacy is that of bribery…..especially when it comes to the state of Israel.

For 60+ years no Arab nation has been on good terms with Israel….and for damn near 100 years the Israelis have been abusing the Palestinians whose land they stole to set up some kingdom in the Middle East.

Enter Trump and his brand of silly diplomacy…..the Saudis get nuke technology if they recognize and formalize relations with Israel….then the UAE gets advanced weaponry to do the same….now Morocco has decided to deal with Israel but only after the Trump admin sends them advanced drones.

Not only do the Moroccans get advanced weaponry but the US will recognize their claim to the Western Sahara….

Reuters cited three anonymous US officials who did not indicate whether the sale was related to the normalization agreement or not. But the UAE is preparing to purchase a $23 billion weapons package as its reward for opening ties with Israel, so advanced military equipment is clearly on the table for Arab countries who take the step to normalize.

The sources said the sale to Morocco would consist of four MQ-9B SeaGuardian drones made by General Atomics with a range of 6,000 nautical miles that can significantly boost Rabat’s surveillance capabilities. While the SeaGuardians can carry a payload, it’s not clear if they will be sold armed.

One of the sources said Congress could be notified of the potential sale as early as Friday. Congress could potentially block the deal, but the source said that is not expected. On Thursday, the Senate failed to pass resolutions that aimed to stop the UAE weapons sales.

As a reward for agreeing to normalize with Israel, the US recognized Morocco’s sovereignty over Western Sahara. Morocco annexed the territory after the Spanish withdrew from the region in 1975. Rabat then fought a war with the Polisario Front, a group that represents the indigenous Sahrawi people, to control the territory until a ceasefire was reached in 1991.

(antiwar.com)

The Polisario Front declared the Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic (SADR) in 1976, a de facto state in Western Sahara. The SADR is a member of the African Union and maintains diplomatic relations with about 40 UN member states. Currently, the SADR controls about 20 percent of Western Sahara, and Morocco controls the rest. The UN recognizes neither the SADR nor Moroccan sovereignty over the region.

In a deal brokered by United States President Donald Trump’s outgoing administration, Morocco became the latest Arab country to normalise ties with Israel.

As part of the agreement announced on Thursday, Trump agreed to recognise Morocco’s sovereignty over the disputed territory of Western Sahara, where there has been a decades-old dispute with Morocco pitted against the Polisario Front.

The Algeria-backed breakaway movement Polisario Front seeks to establish an independent state in the region.

Western Sahara has been on the United Nations list of non-self-governing territories, a stance also taken by the African Union, the International Court of Justice (ICJ), as well as the European Union.

https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2020/12/11/western-sahara-conflict-in-500-words

Once again the US NO LONGER stands for democracy and the right of self-determination.

I have given my thoughts many times on the situation in Western Sahara…..for further information please read….

https://lobotero.com/2011/06/15/where-is-western-sahara/

https://lobotero.com/2015/11/10/western-sahara-and-the-sahrawi/

https://lobotero.com/2018/04/30/western-sahara-update/

This is just the opposite of what diplomacy is meant to accomplish…..these decisions will increase the possibility of more and more violence.

Hopefully a new admin will turn back the stupidity of the Trump days…..I doubt it but I can hope.

https://www.britannica.com/place/Western-Sahara

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Warmongers Press

After the assassination of the Iranian scientist I have been saying and writing that it was all an attempt to get Trump to start a war with Iran.

For at least 20 years Israel has been lying about Iran’s search for nukes….some times they are months away and others they are a few years away….in other words there is NO consistency t the accusations.

Israel has wanted the US to solve their Iranian problem for decades….so they take small steps to try and push a reaction by Iran that would justify an all out attack.

As time has elapsed since the killing of Iranian nuclear scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh on 27 November, the chances for quick retaliation are fading away.

After the assassination, in an operation east of Tehran attributed to Israel’s Mossad, senior Iranian leaders have used harsh language to promise revenge, not only against Israel but also the United States and Israel’s new allies in the region, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates.

Among those vowing retribution were President Hassan Rouhani and military confidants of Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, including former Defence Minister Ahmad Wahidi.

But the inflammatory rhetoric subdsided. Gut feelings made room for cool-headed decisions. The first question to be asked is, why? Why did Israel decide to kill him?

https://www.middleeasteye.net/news/iran-scientist-killing-israel-lure-war-failed

Warmongers who have the president’s ear like Cotton and other diehard war enthusiast they keep pushing as well…..

Since Iranian scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh was killed in an apparent Israeli plot, the US and Israel have been warning about threats in the region. Despite Iran’s clear desire to make it to January 20th without a military confrontation with the US, anonymous officials are hyping the threat of Iranian retaliation for Fakhrizadeh’s death.

On Monday, an anonymous US official told The Associated Press that Washington fears Iran may take advantage of US troop drawdowns in Iraq and Afghanistan. For this reason, the official said the US might have to hold off on the planned departure of the aircraft carrier USS Nimitz from the Persian Gulf.

In September, the Nimitz was deployed to the Persian Gulf to send a message to Iran. The US official said the ship must remain in the region “for some time to come.” The official added that an additional fighter squadron might be sent to the Middle East. The US recently deployed B-52 bombers to the region and moved a fleet of F-16 fighter jets from Germany to the UAE.

US and Its Allies Stoking Fears of Possible Iranian Attacks

So the question is….will Trump take the bait and help Israel and start a new endless war?

What are the chances?

Following his election loss Donald Trump reportedly sought options to strike Iran. The president’s senior advisors dissuaded him from doing so, though it’s unclear if he settled on a different option. Then, on 17 November, both Israel and Saudi Arabia reinforced their agreed message that that Iran can never possess nuclear and ballistic missile capabilities. Netanyahu spoke to Biden by phone about Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif’s repeated offer that Iran was willing to return to the 2015 nuclear deal, which was negotiating during the Obama-Biden administration. At that point, nothing appeared out of the ordinary when it came to Iran. There also appeared to be a coalescence of interests between Trump (for his remaining days in office), Israel and Saudi Arabia against Iran.

Opinion – Is the Next Middle East War on the Horizon?

Will there be a 2021 surprise?

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Biden On The Middle East

This is a continuation of my series looking at the direction the Biden administration will most likely pursue…..this time it is the hot bed of the Middle East…..

We know there will be a change from Trumpian policy….but what will those policies be most like?

This is an interview of a person looking deeply into the possible Biden policies for the region.

Here in Washington when a new administration is set to take over–well, in due time–we love to play the game of asking what will happen in every single corner of the world. I think it is a good exercise, for the most part, allowing many times fresh ideas, old concepts, and lots of opinions to get floated and refloated and compared in the weeks leading up to January 20. So, in that spirit, I asked my friend Michael Rubin from AEI for his ideas on where Joe Biden will take U.S. foreign policy when it comes to the Middle East. As always, his thoughts are sharp, comprehensive, and born from years of thinking through this topic for decades in a depth that is rare these days.

First, despite what Donald Trump may believe, we now can say there will be a change in administrations with Joe Biden taking office on January 20th. How do you think his policies will change towards Israel? Clearly, the U.S. and Israel had a strained relationship during the Obama years. Could we see a return to that? How will Biden approach this important alliance?

The Democrats are divided and the policies Biden pursues will depend more on who ultimately wins each position than on what the twitter base of the Democratic party may want. We’re far more likely to have a Secretary of State Tony Blinken or Chris Coons than Ro Khanna or Barbara Lee.

What Will Joe Biden’s Middle East Strategy Look Like?

 

Hammurabi’s Laws

Most people that ever been in a world history class will remember that Hammurabi gave the world its first categorized laws….

As an Assyriologist I studied the Laws in great detail…..but most people have no idea what is in the Laws other than they were the first on record……besides these laws were not exactly what you were taught back in the day.

Found in 1901 by a team of French archeologists in the ancient city of Susa in Iran, the Hammurabi Laws seem to have been created to govern day to day life in Babylonia. While the Hammurabi Laws are not the earliest written laws nor the first of its kind, they are the most complete and incredibly well-preserved. 

The laws were created while Hammurabi reigned in Babylon from 1792 till 1750 BCE. It is widely believed that the Hammurabi Laws have been created on the grounds of Sumerian documents that predate Hammurabi Laws. They seem to have been written by the king of Ur, Ur-Namma, and Lipit-Ishtar of Isin. The Hammurabi Laws have been carefully collected and written on a diorite stela in the temple of Marduk. 

The laws, 282 of them, centered around economic dealings such as commerce, prices, trade and tariffs, as well as family law, civil law, and criminal law. The punishment for breaking any of the laws was different and dependant on the circumstances as well as the offenders’ status. 

There were three distinct social classes in ancient Babylonia – the elite (amelu), the free man (mushkenu), and slaves (ardu). Interestingly enough, while the elite had various privileges and their births and deaths were recorded, under the laws, they were also subjected to harsher punishments and pricier fines.

Written in cuneiform (a system of writing used by Sumerians) and the Akkadian language, the laws are divided into several parts: prologue, legal procedures, family law, slavery, economic dealings, religion, and epilogue. More than just being a vital part of history and allowing people from the 21st century a glimpse into life and culture long gone, the Hammurabi Laws also introduce many concepts we still find relevant today.

Some of the issues mentioned include the necessity for providing evidence if a crime has been committed, making sure there is a minimum wage for workers as well as presuming the accused is innocent until his guilt is proven. The laws also have a rather modern take on incest, divorce, and property rights.

Naturally, there are also segments, especially those about punishment, that most of the people today would find shocking such as cutting off son’s hand if he hit his father or if one man broke the bone of another, the same shall be done to him. Nota bene, these are some of the more “tame” punishments. Parts of the Hammurabi Laws so seem barbaric, as we mentioned, especially when it comes to “an eye for an eye” practices. However, some parts prove that the ancient Babylonians had some rather forward-thinking ideas such as refusal to accept marriage by capture or blood feuds. 

There are also some interesting parts concerning women’s rights. While women were, in a sense, considered to be the property of the husband, the husband was also responsible for providing the woman with an income should they divorce at some point. He also had to return her dowry, and the woman got the custody of children. On the other hand, if a woman was judged to be a bad wife, she could become a slave in her former home or be sent away.  

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Should US Troops Remain In The Middle East?

My first reaction to that question is…Hell NO!  Their families have suffered many years and it is time for them to be reunited with their soldiers.

Bring our troops home…..and the reasons are clear.

  1. The Middle East is a small, poor, weak region beset by an array of problems that mostly do not affect Americans—and that U.S. forces cannot fix. The best thing the United States can do is leave.
  2. The immense cost and evident fruitlessness of U.S. wars in the Middle East are widely lamented in American politics, but not enough to extricate U.S. troops. And even beyond the wars, U.S. policy in the region is an expensive and unnecessary disaster.
  3. The cost of maintaining forces to protect the Middle East from itself is extraordinary, even in peacetime. Conservatively, attempting to control the Middle East costs Americans on the order of $65–70 billion dollars each year, apart from the trillions spent on wars there. The number should be closer to zero.
  4. Nothing about the Middle East warrants the U.S. investment there over the past 30 years. The few important interests there—preventing major terrorist attacks, stopping the emergence of a market-making oil hegemon, curbing nuclear proliferation, and ensuring no regional actor destroys Israel—do not require American troops.
  5. The roughly 60,000 U.S. troops in the region should leave. American efforts to manage the Middle East make nothing about oil, Israel, or terrorism better. The United States would be better off withdrawing all forward-deployed troops from the region, while maintaining access agreements for naval ports with the consent of host countries.
  6. Withdrawing ground forces from the Middle East will make it harder for the United States to start or join any wars there. Shrinking the U.S. armed forces to reflect the lack of threat from the Middle East will free up resources for any number of higher priorities at home or abroad.

Six excellent reasons for pulling US troops out of the Middle East…..[

Why are we still there?

Is it to protect Israel?  If so I say fuck them let them do their own security.

Is it to protect oil?  Again I say screw it…we do not need their oil any longer.

Is it to keep the M-IC in defense contracts and their profits rolling in?  I think I have hit on the the true reason we are still there.  The industry spends billions on Congress they want their money to be well spent….if not they move on to the next corrupt politician that will do their bidding.

Why are we still in the Middle East?

(Insert your thoughts here)

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New Map For Middle East

It has finally happened….all the influence that the US has in the courts of the Middle East has proven to be just what Israel needed…..

And the Neocons dance.

The new agreement signed between Israel and UAE and Bahrain threatens to draw a new map…but to what end?

The imminent establishment of diplomatic relations between Israel and two Gulf states, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain, is part of an on-going process of security cooperation going back many years. While that robs the event of some drama, it also increases its significance. It means that the process of ending the era of Arab-Israeli confrontation will continue, culminating perhaps in a political upheaval in Iran. That is the road that the Middle East may now be on.

Sudan, Saudi Arabia, Oman, and Kuwait are some of the Arab countries reported to be considering peace deals with Israel. One or two of those countries may hold back, and Saudi Arabia, while supporting the process of regional normalization with Israel, may officially withhold formal recognition. It doesn’t matter. Even without official ties, all these countries have in a spiritual sense ended their hostility to the Jewish state.

https://nationalinterest.org/feature/middle-east%E2%80%99s-new-map-169503

Sudan and Oman may be the next to jump on this doomed agreement…

According to reports in Israeli media, Sudan and Oman could announce normalization deals with Israel as soon as next week. The Israeli newspaper Maariv reported Friday that Oman and Sudan are currently involved in US-brokered talks with Israel.

Israel’s i24News reported on Thursday that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is likely to meet with Sudan’s Sovereignty Council Chairman Gen. Abdel Fattah al-Burhan in Uganda in the coming days.

Sources also told i24News that a Sudanese-Israeli Friendship Association will be inaugurated in Khartoum on Saturday. This inauguration is expected to start a normalization process between the two countries.

Sudan was designated a state sponsor of terror by the US in 1993. Khartoum has been negotiating with the US to be removed from that list for over a year. Sources told Reuters that the US is now demanding Sudan normalizes with Israel to be taken off the list.

(antiwar.com)

So a form of bribery to get some to play nice with Israel.

Keep in mind that Israel has done very little to live up to their agreements in the past….like the Oslo Accords…..

Then there is the history of the Arab League comes into the story…..why would they abandon the Palestinian people in favor of Israel?

As one Gulf state after another embraces formal ties with Israel, some have looked to the Arab League to condemn normalisation. Yet to understand why the league will do nothing of the sort, one has to go back to its founding. 

The League of Arab States was founded in 1945 at the instigation and planning of Britain to protect British imperial interests.

The British made sure that the Palestine question was subcontracted to the independent Arab states to absolve itself of responsibility for what it had wrought in the country. Seventy-five years later, the league has been transformed beyond recognition in most aspects, except in its major role of serving imperial interests.

https://www.middleeasteye.net/opinion/how-arab-league-helped-dissolve-palestinian-question

Just another betrayal of democratic principles in favor of a profits for the war machine.

I do not always agree with the Neocons and this is one area that I think they are paid agents of Israel…..they are making the new “peace deal”” sound like it is the end agreement….

Take, for example, the recent peace deals signed between Israel, the United Arab Emirates, and Bahrain. These agreements were the result of a United States-led peace initiative widely condemned by professional diplomats and self-styled foreign policy experts. After Trump recognized Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, the U.S. vetoed a Security Council resolution that condemned the move. The General Assembly later voted 128-9 to denounce America’s decision.

The General Assembly’s position on Jerusalem, of course, paled in comparison to the U.N.’s many decades of financing hatred in the Middle East toward Israel and Jews through its duplicative Palestinian-related committees, the Israel-bashing Human Rights Council, and the U.N. agency for so-called Palestinian refugees. These raise and educate generation after generation to hate Israelis and reject any peace that doesn’t lead to Israel’s destruction.

Trump succeeded where the UN failed

If you read that piece then you will notice that little mention about the rights and lives of the country’s original residents is made…instead it is hawking to benefits of Israel……FDD is a front for Neocon ideology…….there is more they have to say….

Criticism of Israel’s treaty with the United Arab Emirates (UAE) has been relentless. The New York Times’ Roger Cohen calls it “Trump’s Middle Eastern Mirage” and “something rotten.” A Washington Post oped calls it “a big step – in the wrong direction.” Reporting by Bloomberg describes the deal as “thin.” Middle East analyst Daniel Levy writes that the agreement is merely “the codification of an existing reality” which does “nothing by way of advancing peace in any arena.” They are wrong.

The “Treaty of Peace, Diplomatic Relations and Full Normalization Between the United Arab Emirates and the State of Israel” is a robust, legally binding peace treaty that represents a strategic pivot by the UAE. The UAE-Israel Peace Treaty commits the two countries to a relationship far warmer—and with far more intensive cooperation in economic, scientific, and social fields—than the cold peace Israel has with Egypt and Jordan (outside the security field).

UAE-Israel Treaty Is Far Larger Step Towards Peace Than Critics Allege

Once again these people are calling this a “good” deal…..it does not take into consideration the numerous human rights violations of Israel against the people of the West Bank and Gaza…..this is just another piece of manure disguised as a deal.

These is little democratic principles at work in the “only democracy in the Middle East”….money can buy a lot of beneficial PR.

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”