Why Progressives Love the New Cold War

First, there is NOTHING progressive about Democrats….so stop using the term to describe a bunch of center-left cowards. (And center left is being kind to them)

Second, NO true progressive would be in love with a war either hot or cold….

The Clinton campaign’s full-scale effort to turn this election into a referendum on Vladimir Putin is causing liberals like Katrina vanden Heuvel, editor of The Nation, and Glenn Greenwald, the energizing force behind The Intercept, much heartburn. Here is Ms. van den Heuvel wondering what the heck is going on: “How does new Cold War […]

Source: Why Progressives Love the New Cold War – Antiwar.com Original by — Antiwar.com

Democrats are nothing more than a neo-liberal……and neo-liberalism is a failed concept…..no matter how the Dems try to spin the thing they are nothing but war hawks and should be in bed with the GOP.

Wasted Time And Neglected Issues

As I say all the time…this election should be more about foreign policy and our constant wars than most other issues…..and I was also hoping that someone would make it a priority of the debates since the candidates do not like talking about it…..I was needlessly to say disappointed.

The last debate would have been a perfect time and place for this conversation and instead we got these lame ass slogans and one liners…..

Even the American Conservative see the lack of concern on this important issue…..

As I feared, the final presidential debate paid almost no attention to foreign policy except as it related to Iraq and Syria. I’ll comment on the candidates’ answers in a later post, but first I wanted to say a few things about the almost total neglect of foreign policy in the general election to date. Foreign policy is without a doubt one of the principal responsibilities of the president, and it is an area where the president has the greatest leeway with the least resistance from the other branches of government. Congress’ abdication of responsibility in this area is well-known. That suggests that the presidential candidates’ views on foreign policy should be among the most important things to know about them, and it means that voters need to be informed about the candidates’ understanding of the relevant issues and how to address them. For the most part, that isn’t happening, and it’s a serious problem that ought to concern us all.

Perhaps more than in any election cycle since 2000, foreign policy has received remarkably little attention in the general election (and it didn’t receive much more during the primaries), and many pressing issues have been ignored entirely throughout the campaign. The war in Afghanistan and the war on Yemen are among the most obvious and damning omissions in my view, but one could find quite a few other other important things that the candidates have never been asked about. We have almost no idea how either candidate would approach approximately nine-tenths of the rest of the world, and the election is in less than three weeks. That is pathetic even by our usual poor political standards.

Source: The Third Presidential Debate’s Neglect of Foreign Policy | The American Conservative

Neither candidate gives me much confidence….regardless that one has “diplomatic” experience….and yet she does not want to push her foreign policy bona fides…..why?

Only two weeks left to make your decision……..If you vote out of some misplaced loyalty or because of some rhetoric that means NOTHING….then you deserve the shittiest government possible.

Please do not vote foolishly.

Peace out…….

Why Not Admit That America Is Fighting 5 Wars?

The newest push against the barbarous turds in Mosul, ISIS……our continuing pounding of Syria……(thinking)….did I forget anything?

You bet your ass you did….

The shameful conspiracy of silence around America’s many wars

In an election flush with conspiracy theories, here’s one that’s real: Both major party nominees, as well as the journalists who cover the election and moderate the debates, are actively conspiring to avoid talking about the fact that the United States is waging war in at least five countries simultaneously: Iraq, Syria, Yemen, Libya, and Somalia.

In the first two presidential debates, our involvement in the Syrian civil war was briefly discussed, as was ISIS in vague terms, and the Iran nuclear deal, and Russia’s mischief-making in Eastern Europe and the Middle East, and Libya, though mostly in the past tense, focused on our 2011 intervention to depose Moammar Gadhafi and the subsequent attack on American government facilities in Benghazi a year later.

Source: Why won’t anyone admit that America is fighting 5 wars?

Five Wars?  How many more can we fight successfully?

No matter which of the worthless candidates wins the election…we will have many others to contend with in the future….

We, the US, has been at war so long no that it has become humdrum…..at least for some….or should I say most?

The days of massive troops attacking a beach are gone……the Napoleonic style is no more…..there is a whole new way of “fighting”…….these are not your Daddy’s wars…….

A recommendable New York Times piece looks at the mostly hidden way the U.S. is now waging wars. The example is Somalia, where the U.S. has been at war with the people of that country for over 25 years. But, as the authors note, the same modus operandi applies elsewhere.

The Obama administration has intensified a clandestine war in Somalia over the past year, using Special Operations troops, airstrikes, private contractors and African allies in an escalating campaign against Islamist militants in the anarchic Horn of Africa nation.

Source: The New U.S. Way Of War: Special Ops, Mercenaries, Rebels, Proxies, Drones | Global Research – Centre for Research on Globalization

There is a new way of thinking about the combatants……

In May 2007, I concluded my remarks to the graduates of Duquesne University (my Alma Mater) with these words: “Life will soon bring you increased responsibilities, and it is rare that you will have a legitimate choice to do nothing. Responsibility usually demands action.”

In fact, during my tenure at CIA, acting was often tough and a little lonely since the Agency was serving a government whose definition of the war on terror far outstripped any other and a president with a bolder view on how to conduct the conflict than many (eventually most) in the Congress thought appropriate, and within the executive branch, CIA operated on the outer edges of executive prerogative more than any other arm of government.

Source: Choices of War: Detain and Interrogate, or Kill? | World Affairs Journal

The last option seems to be the easiest…..

Libya: What Went Wrong?

It has been 5 years since the rule of Qaddafi came to an end…..what began as a popular uprising against a dictator descended into chaos….and what started out as the promise of a more democratic government quickly went south and into the typical death and destruction of the War on Terror…..

It has been nearly five years since Libyan leader Col. Moammar Gadhafi was captured and killed by Libyan rebels near his hometown of Sirte on Oct. 20, 2011. Sadly, Libya remains a deeply divided country, both politically and institutionally, and does not have a functional representative government in place. Tragically, Libya’s democratic transition process failed to create an environment conducive for democracy and the rule of law. Instead, Libya became a country where militias ruled, extremist groups flourished and living conditions deteriorated significantly. The country also suffers from a major political crisis, with various competing governments each claiming legitimacy and control over key institutions such as the Central Bank, the National Oil Corporation and the Libyan Investment Authority.

Today, Libyans are forced to choose between two extremes: either chaos with militias and Islamist extremists as the dominant forces, or military rule. No other convincing options are on offer. The choice is quite clear in Libya’s eastern region of Cyrenaica (Barqa in Arabic), where the military is now the dominant armed and political force on the ground, expanding its control over democratically elected and civilian institutions without any public opposition and with clear public support for their actions. On June 19, the president of the Libyan parliament in Tobruk, in his claimed capacity as supreme commander of the armed forces, declared a state of emergency and appointed the Libyan National Army Chief of Staff Abdulrazaq Nadori as military governor for the eastern region. Nadori now has the power to appoint civilian and military committees and can replace local municipal councils with military governors. He also can prohibit demonstrations that do not have prior written consent from his office.
What started as a humanitarian crisis morphed into a hunt for Qaddafi and his death….and then the country broke into factions and the conflict ensued…the same conflict that has inflicted Iraq and Syria…..
Once again NATO has brought death, destruction and confusion to another country….and then it backs out and lets it descend into further chaos to the point that their intervention is seen as giving help to the helpless…..it all looks like the same plan that NATO is using around the world.
Found this article after I posted my thoughts on Libya…..after reading I see that it should have been included…..
On 20 October 2011, former Libyan leader Colonel Muammar Qadhafi was dragged out of his sewage-pipe hideout to meet his inglorious end. Five years on and things in Libya couldn’t be much worse. There is still no centralised authority; killing, abduction and torture are rife; the economy is almost on its knees; and the country has fragmented beyond repair. The triumphalism that accompanied Qadhafi’s removal from power can hardly have been more misplaced.

Much of the chaos that has enveloped the country is down to the Libyans themselves. The blame for the incessant squabbling and local turf wars that have eclipsed all sense of a national good must be laid squarely at the door of Libya’s new powerbrokers. There is also the legacy of forty years of rule by a ruthless dictator whose uncompromising vision of the state stripped the country of functioning institutions and its population of a political culture. In addition, the sudden toppling of a highly centralised authority was always going to mean that the country would struggle to get back on its feet.

Could A New Cold War Be Worse Than the Last?

There is lots of talk about our relations with Russia these days…..especially during the election process…..there are lots of images being past around about the Lat Cold War…….and even some predictions that we are in or headed to a new confrontation with Russia…..

Murray Polner: Nowadays, Washington’s gung-ho cold warriors, few of whom have ever worn a military uniform, and our obsequious mass media, have convinced far too many Americans to dutifully accept the Grand Illusion that, America’s role is to right the wrongs of the world.

The older I become the more I realize that the movies I watched as a kid  somehow taught us how to deal with enemies, real and imagined, at home or abroad. In my beloved cowboy films everything boiled down to good guys/ bad guys, moral oversimplifications and victories delivered by six-shooters. It was clean, swift and uncomplicated, with no remorse.

A very smart, if cynical John LeCarre put it another way with his more realistic “Rule One of the Cold War,” which is just as true in today’s emerging new Cold War: “Nothing, absolutely nothing is what it seems. Everyone has a second motive, if not a third.” That’s certainly true in today’s Syria and everywhere else.

Source: Why the New Cold War Could Be Worse Than the Last Cold War – LA Progressive

Campaign rhetoric aside….does anyone think that we will return to the days of the Cold War hysteria?

There is a need to find a balance between sanctioning Russia for its recent transgressions of international norms and keeping the door open for better relations in the future.”

This year, the tragedies and outrages of the Ukraine crisis have dominated headlines and thinking about Western relations with Russia. There can be little doubt that the United States and its European allies and partners need a response to the Russian annexation of Crimea, to the destabilization of eastern Ukraine, to the separatists’ downing of a civilian airliner—and to the threat to global order that all of these actions represent.

Source: How to Avoid a New Cold War | Brookings Institution

After careful deliberation…..depending on the outcome of the election…..then we will return to “Cold War” footing.

But in case there is still any doubt out there is the blogoshere…..

The Russian Parliament on Wednesday approved the suspension of a cooperative weapons-grade plutonium disposal agreement with the United States, formalizing one of the sharpest downturns in relations between Moscow and Washington since the start of the Ukraine crisis in 2014.

According to the Tass news agency, the measure was adopted virtually unanimously by the State Duma, Russia’s lower house of parliament. Of the deputies present, 445 supported its adoption, and only one member of parliament abstained.

Source: Russian Parliament Approves Suspension of Nuclear Cooperation with US | World Affairs Journal

Somewhere out there a smile is creeping across the face of a neocon……this made me think of the music of my youth…..

UN, A Paralyzed Institution

Not many Americans have anything nice to say about the UN……and most of the opinions are based on crap thinking…..I have written about what I see as wrong with the UN and its place in the world.

As an introduction here is my op-ed from a year ago……

Since I can remember conservs have hated the United Nations…….and they will go on and on about this failure or that……got me to thinking why do so many absolutely hate the UN?

I guess most of it is a monetary thing…….Best Answer:  Most Americans hate it, because we pay the majority of its bills, provide the bulk of its military power and yet are almost universally hated by the very people we try to help…….

Source: Why Hate The United Nations (UN)? – In Saner Thought

I have a friend in Russia that is a Middle East analyst like myself and she has written a great piece about the UN’s problems……

Maria Dubovikova, president of the International Middle Eastern Studies Club

A leading Russian political analyst specializing in Middle Eastern affairs has described the United Nations Security Council as a talk shop that has become a battleground where global powers indulge in mutual recriminations.

Speaking to Arab News from Moscow on Sunday, Maria Dubovikova, president of the International Middle Eastern Studies Club (IMESClub), said: “Saturday’s vote at the Security Council has shown that the Council is in total paralysis. It is totally outdated. It has become a playing field for global powers who are interested only in flexing their muscles. It is a place where mutual recriminations are exchanged. It has been reduced to being a place where countries fight only for their national interests.”

Source: Russian-Arab affairs analyst slams UN’s ‘total paralysis’ over Syria – The Muslim Times

She promotes the interests of Saudi Arabia…..a position that is not to my liking….but even though we disagree on this we agree on the UN and the fact that one country can paralyze the institution to the point of being ineffectual.

I have said many times….after 70 years it is time for NO one country with veto power in the Security Council…..you want the UN to work then eliminate that one power…

Ever Read Tolstoy?

Don’t fret this is not some post on Russian lit per se……although it does help me make a point on foreign policy…..you know that subject that the candidates want to avoid speaking on while on meets and greets.

Have you ever read the novel, War and Peace?  How about Anna Karenina?  Both were written by Russian Leo Tolstoy and as usual they are long winded and detailed……I bring this up because these days there seems to be a certain sector of our society that seems hell bent on a confrontation with Russia.

Tolstoy wrote about this…the rush to war….so to speak……

I recently read a piece that makes the comparison….an excellent piece and very thought provoking…..well at least to me……for I spend a lot of time researching conflicts….causes and effects……

Rushing to war – justified by half-truths and propaganda – is a story as old as written history and the topic of great novelists like Leo Tolstoy, whose Anna Karenina offers lessons for today’s stampede toward WWIII,

Russian literature is too important to be left to professors of Comp Lit or to Slavic Departments at our universities, as is so often the case with the novel that I propose to examine here, Leo Tolstoy’s, Anna Karenina. Great literature is great precisely because of its multi-layered construction and the timelessness of the issues and considerations that constitute its substance.

Like War and Peace, Karenina has been the subject of many films going back to 1911, running through the 1930s with two classic versions featuring the legendary Greta Garbo and right up to time present and the widely discussed version released in 2012.

The novel has a core triangle, the relations between the heroine, her unloved and unloving husband who is 20 years her senior, Alexei Alexandrovich Karenin, and her lover, Prince Alexei Vronsky, for whom she gives up everything but does not find happiness or inner peace, seeing instead that her only way out is suicide. It is about love and passion, about the basic building block of all societies, the family.

Source: Applying Tolstoy to Today’s Rush to War – Consortiumnews

The books need to be on your bucket list…they are well worth the time it takes to read them….again maybe that is just me.