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Posted on Jul 24, 2016 in Democratic Party, Donald Trump, E.U., Eastern Europe, Elections-U.S., Foreign Policy Issues, Hillary Clinton, Iran, Iraq, ISIS, Middle East, Putin, Russia, Syria, Turkey, Ukraine and Crimea | 0 comments

Trump’s destabilizing policies threaten America’s nuclear deterrence strategy–traitorous action or simply ignorance?

  Seventy years of bi-partisanship have gone into creating a credible deterrence strategy to cope with the challenges posed to our foreign policy in an era of nuclear powers and the means of delivering them. Our deterrence strategy rests upon the elimination and reduction of doubt as to whether certain actions against ourselves and our allies will produce a response by the U.S. that is unacceptable to a potential enemy. The weaving of alliances and other measures taken to implement and maintain this strategy has been supported by every President, Secretary of Defense, and Secretary of State, both Republican and Democratic, since the fateful dropping of those early atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki ended World War II and ushered in the dangerous  nuclear age. This credibility of our response and commitments to our allies have been seriously, if not fatally, weakened by Donald Trump’s clearly ignorant insertion of doubt into the equation. He might as well have invited North Korea across the “no-man’s land” and across the 38th parallel and on into our...

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Posted on Nov 25, 2015 in Foreign Policy Issues, ISIS, Middle East, Russia, Shia, Syria, Turkey, Uncategorized | 0 comments

Turkey shooting down of Russian jet: Murky details. Russian intentions dubious. Tensions de-escalated.

By now most of you have heard that Turkey, our NATO ally, shot down a Russian military jet on Tuesday, November 24th. Some of the details are murky at this writing. Russian President Putin claims it was a “stab in the back,” that their plane had not crossed into Turkish air space, and the pilot was not given any warnings. Turkey, for its part, insists that their air-space was encroached and that they gave the Russian pilot ten warnings before their F-16 shot him down. The Turkish military has released a recording of a Turkish speaker saying, “change your heading.” Konstantin Murakhtin, the Russian navigator who was rescued yesterday, insists that they received no warnings. Videos of the Russian plane being hit and going down has gone viral on the internet, but it focuses on the distant sky and does nothing to answer the questions of airspace location and the presence or absence of warnings. Nor does it deal with the meaningful issue of what the Russian Su-24 fighter-bomber was doing...

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Posted on Nov 16, 2015 in Democratic Party, Donald Trump, Dr. Carson, Foreign Policy Issues, Hillary Clinton, Iraq, ISIS, Israel, Jeb Bush, Kurdistan, Middle East, Republican Party, Shia, Sunni, Turkey, Uncategorized | 0 comments

Christian test for refugees aids ISIS. Ground war in Syria could be a worse hornet’s nest than Iraq.

The attacks in Paris have the potential to be game changers. French Prime Minister Manuel Valls exclaimed, “nous sommes en guerre” (we are at war), and President Hollande told the world that “France will destroy IS.” President Obama announced that the U.S. stands together with France, and Secretary of State John Kerry announced meetings with his French counterpart to determine exactly what form the response will take. Talks of war are in the air, and it has been seized upon by many of the Republican hopefuls, and some Democrats have lent their voice to the jingoist chants. Whichever path of response that we choose, we would do well to make sure that we don’t repeat the disastrous invade-first and think-about-what-happens-next-later mode that produced the Iraqi mess and the resultant ISIS conundrum. ISIS has been successful in recruiting Western Muslims, in part, by framing it as a war between Islam and Christian Crusaders–a reminder of the humiliation, plundering, and rape that accompanied the Crusader’s conquering march to the holy land. Meanwhile, candidate Donald Trump, whose ten hour...

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Posted on Jul 28, 2015 in Anbar, Elections-U.S., Foreign Policy Issues, Iran, Iraq, ISIS, Israel, Kobani, Kurdistan, Middle East, Turkey, Uncategorized | 0 comments

Turkey finally joins fight against ISIS. Kurdish PKK attack Turkey. Iraqi Conundrum made more complicated.

What a merry go-around. The Kurdish Peshmerga have proven to be the best Iraqi fighters against ISIS. The Kurds have been asking for weapons from us directly, i.e., not handed out piecemeal from the weak Shia dominated Iraqi government. Something we should do, right? But wait. The Turks don’t want us to do that. We have been trying to get Turkey, the biggest power in the immediate region and a member of N.A.T.O., to let us use a base in Turkey for our air strikes against ISIS. We have also been after Turkey to help directly in the fight against ISIS. This past week they finally entered the fray, in a limited way, after attacks by ISIS on a Turkish city that lies on their border with Syria. They also finally agreed to allow us to use the air base, in exchange for us trying to create a safe zone in Northern Syria. So why don’t they want us to provide heavy military supplies directly to the Kurds to...

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