syria

In RE Iran: “We Killed Yamamoto”

“Fellas, this guy is going to stand trial in a U.S. court, and if we have to stick heroin on his plane to get him there, that’s what we’re going to do.”
– President Jed Bartlet, The West Wing

Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto was Japan’s top naval commander-in-chief.  A brilliant strategist, a masterful tactician, and a genius at logistics, Yamamoto masterminded Pearl Harbor and had operated the Japanese attack fleet against the Allies in such a way that their materiel disadvantage was more than compensated for by his audacity.

In 1942, the American SIS broke the Japanese naval code (more…)

The War In Kurdistan

It’s all over the news, and every American politician (and French) seeking re-election is repeating it:  Trump has betrayed the Kurds to Turkey, set ISIS fighters free, and is actively running the U.S. military in a way that benefits only Russia.

The danger with facts everyone knows is that there’s no easy way to convince people they’re wrong.  Usually the problem boils down to oversimplification; it’s easy to be wrong when you don’t know anything.  In this case, it’s that — plus, everyone’s got a massive axe to grind and Trump’s a great target to score points off.

But some of it’s definitely true, so we’ll start there and move on. (more…)

Nothing To See Here; Move Along

(or, Why I Haven’t Written Much Lately)

Most of my posts here are about current events.  When an important new law gets signed, I’m all over it; when there’s a big mystery or scandal, I’m right here with my opinion.  Normally, when there’s a pause in the news for whatever reason, I’ll chime in with a suggestion on policy.

Trouble is, right now, nothing’s happening, and what is happening is just more of (more…)

White Phosphorous In Syria

It’s been reported by such prestigious journals as the Washington Post and the New York Times, and Amnesty International has released a potential war crimes alert:  The headlines say the United States is attacking civilians in Syria with incendiary rounds, something that’s been banned by the Geneva Convention — and for good reason.

The world reacts in horror, some in righteous indignation, others with a sort of resigned acceptance, knowing in advance just how horrible America is.

And yet, this seems like an uncharacteristically foolhardy action for the United States (more…)

Syria: It’s Time To Worry

The Syrian Civil War has been characterized by the United Nations as the “great humanitarian crisis of our age”.  A nation of twenty million, Syria has lost twenty percent of its population, most of whom have fled as international refugees.  On the other hand, over a hundred thousand foreign militants have gone there to fight, and the armed forces of a dozen nations have deployed in what has become one of the biggest proxy wars in all of history.

And it’s nearly over. (more…)

Tomahawking Syria: Questions?

It’s been all over the news, and as far as the actual events are concerned you probably know as much as I do.  There are a few items worthy of note, however, that aren’t all over the headlines, and it’s highly likely the details will be forgotten as the global situation continues to develop. (more…)

Upcoming Immigration Ban: What We Know

(NOTE:  This article is being written in advance of the new Executive Order designed to function in place of that order of 27 January which has been partially blocked by the 9th Circuit.  It is designed to be predictive in nature.  When the new order finally is released, expect to see this updated with comparisons, but I’ll try to leave my predictions intact so you can see how smart I am — or how foolish, just as the case may be.  The new order has now been released; comparisons are in a separate section at the end of the article.)

One week after taking office, President Trump released an executive order banning travel to this country on certain passports.  I’ve written extensively on the pros and cons of accepting refugees, on the ways the ban went horribly wrong and why, and on the justifications for that ban.  Combining that with the decision of the 9th Circuit to block some of its implementation, we should be easily able to predict what’s about to get ordered. (more…)

I Don’t Think We’re Invading Iran Today

I’ll admit, for a few minutes yesterday, I was getting very worried about whether or not we were about to go conquer Iran.

Bear in mind, if we ever do go in, it’ll probably be a Friday afternoon (more…)

So About These Australian Refugees

I don’t know about you, but when I woke up to discover that we’re having a refugee problem with Australia, it made my brain hurt for a bit.  I mean, I know they’ve got this cane toad problem, and some of the most poisonous nasty creatures on earth live there — I mean, spiders and snakes, sure, but a snail?  A deadly stinging tree?  Gina Rinehart, for God’s sake?! — but that’s no reason to flee the country.  Or maybe it is; I don’t know.  I’ve never met the woman. (more…)

I Hate This Place: Revisiting Refugees, Pros and Cons

“I Hate This Place”
-Spider Jerusalem

“All government, in its essence, is a conspiracy… One of its primary functions is to regiment men by force, to make them as much alike as possible and as dependent upon one another as possible, to search out and combat originality among them. All it can see in an original idea is potential change, and hence an invasion of its prerogatives.

The most dangerous man to any government is the man who is able to think things out for himself, without regard to the prevailing superstitions and taboos.  Almost inevitably he comes to the conclusion that the government he lives under is dishonest, insane and intolerable…”
-H.L. Mencken, “The Smart Set” (more…)