The New York Times and various media outlets are reporting universal denials of the military that there was any evidence to support President Donald Trump’s repeated assertions that ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, died “whimpering and crying and screaming all the way” to his death. The embarrassing denials comes after a videotape contradicted Trump’s claim that “almost all” of farmers who attended his signing of an executive order were crying. The videotape shows no one crying. The statement on al-Baghdadi is particularly curious because al-Baghdadi ran down an alley and blew himself up with a suicide vest. Military sources say that there is no evidence of the whimpering and crying described by Trump.Continue reading ““Something He Made Up”: Military Denies Trump’s Claim About Al-Baghdadi Death”
We have been discussing the disastrous decision of President Donald Trump to withdraw U.S. forces from the Turkish border with virtually no warning to his own agencies and allies. While some of us support the effort to remove troops from these countries, there is overwhelming condemnation from Republicans and Democrats in how this was done. The Turks have been accused of war crimes and ethnic cleansing as Russia occupies former U.S. bases in the area. Worse yet, Vladimir Chizhov, Russia’s Ambassador to the EU, has warned our other allies that the United States cannot be trusted and that they must now look to Moscow for a reliable friend: “We warned the Kurds that the Americans would abandon them. And here in Rhodes, I can personally warn the Greeks to think about whether a similar fate awaits them.”Continue reading “Russians Warn Greeks That United States Will Abandon Them Like It Abandoned The Kurds”
Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s aides made a point of telling U.S. media that Erdogan threw Donald Trump controversial letter to him into the trash and promised to take actions against the United States for the disrespectful content. In the meantime, the Turks are promising to “crush the heads” of the Kurds if they do not withdraw entirely from border areas. Erdogan himself said “we have not forgotten” the letter or its insulting tone.Continue reading “Turkish President Throws Trump Letter Into Trash as Aides Promise “Necessary Steps” Over Disrespect”
Ouch. Many of us were surprised when President Donald Trump launched into former US defense secretary James Mattis at his controversial meeting with Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Trump referred to him as “the world’s most overrated general” and claimed “I captured ISIS.” Mattis, who has been largely silent after his departure, delivered a body blow of a response as part of the annual Alfred E Smith Memorial Foundation dinner. Using the tradition roast format, Mattis found the perfect venue to hit Trump under the guise of humor. True to his training, the well-delivered lines aimed for critical organs. It could be worse: David Cameron just labeled Boris Johnson the “greased piglet” and meant it as a compliment in getting Brexit through Parliament.Read more
A U.S. Special Forces members in Syria told Fox News on the abandonment of our Kurdish allies has left left him “ashamed for the first time” in his career. He also says that the Turks have committed war atrocities after President Donald Trump overruled his military and state departments in suddenly pulling back troops. Trump responded on Thursday to the threat of thousands of extremist ISIS fighters escaping from prisons, including sites bombed by Turkey. When reporters pressed Trump on the widespread condemnation for the betrayal of the Kurds, Trump downplayed the alliance with the Kurds, 11,000 of whom died fighting to help the US mission against ISIS. “They didn’t help us in the second World War, they didn’t help us with Normandy for example,” Trump said. “They’re there to help us with their land, and that’s a different thing.” Normandy is an area of France, not the US.”>Trump triggered further outrage by dismissing the Kurds (who lost 11,000 in fighting with the U.S. in Syria) by saying “They didn’t help us in the second World War, they didn’t help us with Normandy for example.” It is a bizarre comment since Turkey was far from a reliable ally in World War II. Indeed, it signed a treaty with Germany and was accused of assisting the Nazis in critical ways, including chromite exports that kept the Nazi war machine going.
Notably, after getting Trump to back away from the protection of the Kurds, President Tayyip Erdogan is threatening Europe by pledging to send millions of refugees (including extremists) into their countries if they criticize his scorched earth invasion into Syria.Continue reading ““I Am Ashamed”: U.S. Special Forces Watch As Turks Overwhelm Former Kurdish Allies”
In a move that reportedly shocked U.S. military and diplomatic officials, President Donald Trump suddenly caved to Turkish demands and ordered U.S. troops to pull back from the areas held by our Kurdish allies. The move is being widely denounced by both Democrats and Republicans as an abandonment of allies who have fought along side with us for years. Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., denounced the “impulsive decision” by Trump and said that this could be “a disaster in the making.” The authoritarian president of Turkey, Recep Tayyip Erdogan is of course delighted and is expected to invade Syria now that U.S. troops are pulling back. Nikki Haley, Trump’s former United Nation ambassador, put it bluntly in saying that Trump was leaving our Kurdish allies “to die.” Likewise, Senate Majority Leader denounced the move and declared that it “would only benefit Russia, Iran, and the Assad regime. And it would increase the risk that ISIS and other terrorist groups regroup.”Continue reading “Trump Orders U.S. Troops To Pull Back In Syria. . . Leaving Kurdish Allies To Mercy of The Turks”
President Donald Trump has tweeted that he has fired National Security Adviser John Bolton. Bolton however pointedly contradicted Trump and said that he resigned. What is clear is that another high-ranking Trump official is out — an astonishing turnover of such officials in a single Administration. However, few are likely to object on this one given the unpopularity of Bolton in Washington, which viewed him as someone who has long advocated the use of military interventions and wars. Update: President Trump responded by saying that Bolton was indeed fired and he did not resign as he has stated.Continue reading “Bolton Out: National Security Adviser Suggests Trump Is Lying About His Firing”
Below is my column in The Hill newspaper on a week of disturbing false statements from the two leading presidential candidates for 2020. Both stories should give voters pause. Indeed, this week has also seen candidates like Kamala Harris challenged on not one but two statements on her record and, in a way, her selective hearing. Yet, despite Donald Trump’s bizarre conduct in the Hurricane Dorian controversy, the more serious (and less covered) falsehood was Joe Biden’s statement about his claimed opposition to the Iraq War. As someone who opposed the Iraq War, it is frustrating to see former and current senators falsely claiming to have been duped or being opposed to the war. At the time, neither Democratic nor Republicans senators wanted to even hear from those of us who opposed the resolution. Indeed, the key hearing held was absurd with neither party calling opponents to the war. What is striking however is how little press was given to Biden’s false claim in comparison to the Hurricane controversy.
Here is the column:Continue reading “Biden’s Lying About Iraq Shows Why Our Nation Has So Many Wars”
For those of us who opposed the war resolution on Iraq, the later spins by presidential candidates John Kerry and Hillary Clinton left us incensed. At the time, many of us criticized the 2002 Authorization for Use of Military Force Against Iraq as a blank check to President Bush that jettisoned the responsibilities given to them by the Framers. When they voted for the war, it was popular and that seemed the only determinative factor. When thousands died or were wounded and hundreds of billions of dollars wasted, they followed the polls in belatedly opposing their own prior positions. Kerry and Clinton later insisted that they were tricked about the resolution despite such objections in the press. Now we can add presidential candidate Joe Biden who is raising objections over his insistence that he never really supported the war and that he “immediately” opposed it.Continue reading “Biden Claims That He Voted For Iraq War And Then “Immediately” Opposed It”
There was a rare public violation by an officer in uniform this week when Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden was met by Major Ginger Tate of the U.S. Army National Guard Signal Corps . Tate proceeded to give Biden some ceremonial coins but then added “I hope and pray that you will be our next president.” This could present a novel problem for the White House. Normally, the White House could strongly object to the violation of the Hatch Act, but the Trump White House (and particularly adviser Kelly Anne Conway) has been a flagrant violator of the Act and refused to take actions against those violating the Act in favor of the President.Continue reading “A Major Hatch Act Violation? Officer Endorses Biden While In Uniform”
Always check your batteries. There is a report out of the United Kingdom that an ISIS terrorist rigged a drone as a bomb only to kill himself. The reason? The terrorist failed to fully charge the drone which ran low in mid flight so it returned to its base automatically –detonating over the head of the terrorist.Continue reading “ISIS Terrorist Killed By Drone Bomb After A Low Battery Charge Caused Drone To Return Home”
President Donald Trump took a highly extraordinary — and in my view a highly inappropriate — step on Wednesday in ordering the Navy to rescind the achievement medals awarded to military prosecutors in the case against Navy SEAL Eddie Gallagher. Gallagher was accused of murder and other crimes in his killing of a teenage ISIS fighter who was his prisoner in 2017 in Iraq. It is hard not to view the President’s intervention as retaliation against prosecutors who took an unpopular case and carried out their duties despite being publicly ridiculed by the Commander in Chief. The move undermines the professionalism and independence of the military justice system.Continue reading “Trump Rescinds Medals For Prosecutors In Gallagher Case”
Below is my column in Los Angeles Times on the growing number of people pledging to “storm Area 51.” What they could find is far more unnerving than alien parts in jars.
Here is my column:Continue reading “The Truth Is Out There: The Secrets Of Area 51 Have A More Earthly And Lethal Story”
We have previously discussed how the controversial EU President Jean-Claude Juncker has dismissed the notion of national boundaries and called nationalists “stupid.” Various countries are faced with parties seeking to exit from the European Union as the EU exercised more and more control over every aspect of life in various countries. Rather than look for a figure to allay such concerns, the EU is moving toward a leader who has called for a United States of Europe with a single military. Ursula von der Leyen is Angela Merkel’s defense minister and was proposed by EU leaders to take over in October as the new leader in Brussels. Continue reading “EU Moves To Select Leader Who Has Called For A “United States Of Europe””
Washington is on edge this morning after congressional leaders were briefed on a strike on Iran and the military deployed assets for the pre-dawn attack only to have President Donald Trump rescind the order. Democrats briefed on the attack urged Trump to deescalate and he appears to have heeded such calls, not only from congressional leaders but some in his own Administration. Frankly, the decision to pull back is reassuring for many who felt like there was an orchestrated effort to push the U.S. into a war with Iran — a war reportedly encouraged by allies like Israel and Saudi Arabia.Continue reading “Trump Reportedly Orders Strike On Iran But Then Rescinds Order”