Foreign Policy

‘We’re Gonna Do What International Law Says We Can Do.’ Aboard the USS Carl Vinson in the South China Sea — TIME

The military needs reigning in. We rattle swords too much. In the Black Sea we thumb our noses at the Russians. In the South China Sea it is the Chinese. We have by far the largest military in the world, and the brass tell us it is not big enough. They want more. The DOD says that increasing our military posture is vital to our defense. We say it weakens us.
Donald Trump agrees. He wants to make the military bigger, stronger and more of a challenge to the rest of the world. He wants to modernize our nuclear capability. Cooperation is out of the question.
Our biggest enemy is debt. You cannot fight debt with more bullets.

From Time-

Crowned with a giant disc-shaped radar — the captains all call it their “eye in the sky” — the E-2C Hawkeye early warning aircraft is typically one of the first to launch and the last to retire on the flight deck of the USS Carl Vinson. By day’s end, more than 100 sorties will have…

via ‘We’re Gonna Do What International Law Says We Can Do.’ Aboard the USS Carl Vinson in the South China Sea — TIME

Is the Turkish Attack on Afrin Intended to Split the U.S.-Kurdish Alliance? — Astute News

The successful Syrian army operation to liberate Abu-Duhur airbase left a large enclave (pink) controlled by al-Qaeda and ISIS fighters in east-Hama. Further advances towards Idleb have been halted for now to clean up the cauldron that could otherwise create future troubles behind the lines. Most of the al-Qaeda/HTS aligned Takfiris are though to have […]

via Is the Turkish Attack on Afrin Intended to Split the U.S.-Kurdish Alliance? — Astute News

Syria: Long Way off to Peace — Astute News

The Intra-Syrian Dialogue Congress held on January 30, 2018 in Sochi, which was missed out by the major opposition forces – the Sunni organizations supported by Saudi Arabia and the USA, and the Kurds of the Syrian Democratic Forces, whose participation was opposed by Turkey, was doomed in advance to the lack of quick and tangible […]

via Syria: Long Way off to Peace — Astute News

The Axis of Arab Autocrats Who Are Standing Behind Donald Trump — Astute News

So Donald Trump revealed his hand on Jerusalem. In so doing, he tossed aside any lingering pretence of the US being able to broker a deal between Israel and Palestine. There can be no “neutrality” now. Without Jerusalem as its capital, no Palestinian state can exist. Without that it is only a matter of time […]

via The Axis of Arab Autocrats Who Are Standing Behind Donald Trump — Astute News

Secretary Tillerson Says There Are Moderate Voices Among The Taliban

No one would ever call this surrender, but that is exactly what it is. Bravo to Rex Tillerson and Donald Trump. We should have surrendered long ago. Make peace with the Taliban. It is our last best hope of getting out of Afghanistan.

The only other prospect we face in this debacle is to endure decades of insurrection propping up the most corrupt government in the world, perhaps with the exception of Pakistan. Afgahanistan has resisted invasion by other governments for hundreds of years. To them, we are merely the newest in a long line.

Pakistan does not want us to win. A weak Afghanistan works for them. They have India to contend with, and that is enough. Better that Afghanistan remain a country at war with itself. Better that the Taliban return Afghanistan to a stone-culture they can safely ignore.

Had we let Russia turn Afghanistan into a communist nation, perhaps, like VietNam, they would now be our trading partners.

NPR –  
Secretary of State Rex Tillerson went to Kabul and Baghdad today as he tries to help wind down two ongoing conflicts. On his trip, he told reporters that the fight against the Taliban must continue, but that there is an opening for certain parts of the group.


Source: NPR Politics
Secretary Of State Tillerson Says There Are Moderate Voices Among The Taliban

Kushner sealed Manhattan real estate deal with oligarch’s firm cited in money-laundering case -The Guardian

Money corrupts Congress, and other things. Businesses that play fast and loose with anyone willing to play, are bad enough. The same wheeling and dealing in the White House is a danger. That is why we vet people in power. Trouble is, playing fast and loose originates from the top of this administration.

From US News-

Jared Kushner, the son-in-law of Donald Trump, who acts as his senior White House adviser, secured a multimillion-dollar Manhattan real estate deal with a Soviet-born oligarch whose company was cited in a major New York money laundering case now being probed by members of Congress.

Source: Jared Kushner sealed Manhattan real estate deal with oligarch’s firm cited in money-laundering case | US news | The Guardian

Trump, Russia, and Those Shadowy Sater Deals at Bayrock – Bloomberg

The real estate deals go back to 2002, and who knows, even before. All the kids were involved. Does the family need to declare dual-citizenship?

Bayrock partnered with the future president and his two eldest children, Donald Jr. and Ivanka, on a series of real-estate deals between 2002 and about 2011, the most prominent being the troubled Trump Soho hotel and condominium in Manhattan.

Source: Trump, Russia, and Those Shadowy Sater Deals at Bayrock – Bloomberg