|Republic of Korea|
|United Arab Emirates|
|Trinidad and Tobago|
|Lao People’s Democratic Republic|
|Antigua and Barbuda|
|United Republic of Tanzania|
|Bosnia and Herzegovina|
|Macedonia, the Former Yugoslav Republic|
You might wonder why I haven’t posted anything in a while, when there is just so much to comment on. The main reason is I did something to my back while unpacking boxes in my new home and sitting down is not comfortable. Standing, walking, lying down are all ok. Makes it hard to sit and write an opinion piece like I normally do. Also makes it awkward at home, standing walking around or lying down on the bed or sofa… not the norm. The good news is that my back is getting better every day, so there hopefully is nothing serious or permanent damage.
Lets see if I can come up with a few topics off the top of my head. First off today is my brother’s birthday, so I hope he is having a good day. The world situation? I read on Reuters that Syria gave a full accounting of its chemical weapons stockpile, and on time too. That should be headline news. We ask for things and then dont report them; the public should be kept informed. Iran might be willing for talks? Sure it could be a stalling tactic like Syria; but what if its not. What if Iran wants to join the world community and give up their nuclear program? Wouldnt that be great if a long time foe could have the same mutual interests as we do?
On the the American Taliban; the GOP and its radical wing the tea party continue to threaten the ruination of America because they don’t like the black man in the White House. This is absurd. America is the worlds leader, the beacon on the hill. If you haven’t read Peggy Noonan’s column in this weeks WSJ you should. If the GOP had only spent their time trying to make ACA better rather than acting like children in a sandbox we would be in a much better place. I dont know how anyone can have a particularly informed opinion on #ACA since we know so little about it. Obama is so losing the messaging war on this. The majority of Americans disapprove, in poll after poll. You know why? No one knows whats in it or what it means for them directly. This is the fault, 100%, of Barack Obama. Explain, tell us whats in the bill, why its good for us. But, no explanation in 3 years except, no pre existing conditions and the talking points we all have heard.
The GOP, in threatening to shut down the government and default on U.S. debt, should all be tried for treason. If you read my blog on a regular basis this will sound familiar. Why isnt our economy better, why is unemployment at a staggeringly high amount? Because the GOP have blocked all attempts by Obama for job creation. As lame as Obama’s attempts have been, at least he proposed job creation in 2011, 2 full years ago. The GOP in threatening default should be jailed. The U.S. economy, the largest in the world, is not to be tinkered with. Its to be maintained and grown. Even threatening default or government shut down slows the economy, the GDP and job creation. That in my mind is treasonous. Just where do people think the long term unemployed go? There was a brilliant article on how disability insurance is souring. Why? Because normal people cant find normal jobs. So, in the end, the GOP cuts end up costing the Country more, growing the long term debt. All because the GOP’s goal is to sabotage Barack Obama. We have never seen this kind of behavior in the history of the Country.
On a lighter note and certainly less important, I was very unimpressed with Apple’s new iPhone 5S. Yes, Apple owns the market now but that wont always be the case. I have seen many companies fall from grace. My advice to Apple, get your ass in gear and bring out a game changing product; otherwise you will go the way of AOL, and other has-beens.
Thats it for today, hopefully my back will feel good enough to sit and write more, I know I am leaving a lot out…
Today’s developments have been quite interested. John Kerry’s off the cuff remark about Assad giving up all of his WMD, then Russia agreeing is pretty remarkable. As we all know Putin wants to be a “player” on the world’s stage. And now he can be. If he immediately steps up and says he personally will head up the effort to remove all WMD from Syria; including other world powers, the UN and the U.S. to verify all the weapons are gone, Putin raises his power as a world leader. If he can get the United States to not strike that is a huge accomplishment. Having Syria WMD free would make the world a much safer place. Putin should take this and run with it. I think if Syria gives up, and it can be proven, all WMD thats punishment enough and no need for U.S. strikes. Putin could do this and he certainly would be more respected if he acted on this. He’d also get to do what he loves doing, making Obama look bad.
Btw, why wasnt this idea articulated by Barack Obama in the first place; saying that he would authorize military attacks if Assad didn’t give up all of his WMD. Again I see a lack of leadership from Mr. Obama. Wait 2 years, then come out guns a blazing to strike? Seems like there is no strategy or Doctrine at all.
And, why are so many Americans against these possibly strikes? Its not just that we are war weary; its that we have no confidence in the military leadership or our presidents knowledge of how to use the military. This goes back to October 2001 when we invaded Afghanistan, yes we toppled the Taliban. Then we up and left, took our assets and attention to toppling Saddam. We easily did that then watched as the Iraqi’s looted museums started a civil war. What happened to the Powell Doctrine of going in with overwhelming military power. Who in their right minds would think we could take 2 countries and make them democracies? It seems like we had no plan. None for Iraq, none for Afghanistan.
Instead, if our presidents and their military advisors had gone into Afghanistan toppled the Taliban; left troops there for counter terrorism and were out in a year. And if Iraq had to have happened we should have gone in with 500,000 troops to keep law and order, toppled Saddam kept the violence from happening and then left there 6 months later we all might have a better view of what can be accomplished. This isnt just about Bush, Obama also had his own surge and nothing is getting better. In my scenario if we were successfully out of Afghanistan and Iraq by 2004 and the missions were a success we might feel differently about U.S. involvement. People talk about having no trust in government; how about no trust in how the government uses the military. I think thats what many of us have lost faith in.
So my advice today is to Vladimir Putin, who I know reads my blog daily (I have many viewers from The Russian Federation) step up, take ownership of this. Get the WMD out of Syria and destroyed. Show the world who the real leader is. You have nothing to lose and everything to gain. #DoIT #Peace
Its so frustrating watching alleged news shows like Meet the Press when the moderator asks the wrong questions; its not just that show its almost every news show. Maybe its me, I have always thought of and seen things differently than most people, I guess thats what people mean when they say I have a unique ‘voice.’ Ok first question for the Chief of Staff, how can this be a short targeted mission? Assad is desperate and doesnt want to end up like Saddam so he will fight until the end. My guess is that Assad uses chemical weapons more and more. What is Obama’s stance on future usage? We strike again? These people, including Hezbollah and Iran hate us; if I were them I’d use chemical weapons monthly and drag the U.S. into a never ending war. Why wasnt this asked? It seems there is no direct proven link that Assad gave the order or if one of his people did. Some even think the opposition used them. So we as a Country are getting into a war that has no end game and could go on for years.
Barack Obama has really messed this up; from ignoring the first chemical attack over a year ago, to a few weeks ago beating the drums of war, saying he doesnt need Congress to act, to sending Kerry out there comparing this Adolf Hitler. Making it seem like a strike was imminent to doing a complete U-turn and asking Congress for support. A Congress that has never given him support. I cant think of a worse position for a president to be in. The UK voted down military action, the American people are strongly against any action; and no one in the world has stood up and said they would help. If Congress votes no and Obama doesnt act he will be a lame duck for the rest of his presidency. If he does act and this continues for a long duration, or isnt effective he will also look bad. I dont get it, after ignoring Syria for 2 years why is he now in such a hurry? He should have just done it then come to the American people and explained what he did, we would have stood behind him. Rather, he is in a lose/lose situation.
At first I supported his plan, I thought when an American president says something he should follow through. Now I have changed my mind, we should not do anything. Peggy Noonan had a great column this week in The Wall Street Journal, she pointed out we dont have to have a strike in order to show the world we mean what we say. And we don’t. If Obama wants to take action there are other ways of doing it, it doesnt have to be militarily. Someone on one of the Sunday shows said something about how we could ‘think out of the box’ as to what should be done. When you have Iran saying the use of chemical weapons is wrong, Iran, you know you pretty much have the worlds consensus that its wrong.
As I see it we dont have a clear mission, we dont have solid proof Assad gave the order and we have a Country saying no.
Feel free to weigh in if you feel differently!
Wow, where to begin, the last few days have been mindbogglingly inane. President Obama could not look any weaker than he does at this moment. Its obvious what the White House is saying was not their original plan. They saw public opinion polls and what happened with our strongest ally voting down the use of force, so now Obama says he wants Congressional approval? Thats a load of crap. He doesnt want to be blamed for strikes that have no support. We had full Congressional support for the Iraq war in 2003; that didnt make us stronger as a Nation when things started going wrong. And now this, Syria, is going to be the top priority of the United States government? Mr. Obama continues to focus on the wrong things; things most people aren’t interested in. Recent polls say 70% of the people have job creation and the economy on their minds. Yet this is completely ignored by this president. Instead of campaigning full throttle for getting people back to work. Consumer spending is down and thats a bad thing, the less consumers spend the fewer number of jobs that are created.
President Obama has done so much good for bringing America into the 21st Century in so many ways; from promoting equality with gay people to changing drug laws that were ineffective and discriminatory. I dont think things like this would have happened with a Republican in the White House. Bringing health care for all would not have happened. Its a shame that he has been such a disappointment in so many other ways. They say having someone new in Washington is good, fresh blood, new ideas. A younger president makes the country feel younger. That was true with JFK, not with Obama. I think its good to know the ways of Washington before you become president. Knowing how deals are made, calling on deeply rooted relationships across the isle to help get things done. For 2016 lets nominate someone that knows the score, Hillary, Biden, not new comers like Paul Ryan, Rand Paul etc.
Back to Syria and the mess thats going on now. First off, we should never have been in the place we are now. Obama should have never drawn a Red Line without having a military plan ready to go and act on it immediately. Obviously his Red Line comment was ill conceived, but thats why we are in the situation we are in now. A President of the United States makes a statement/threat it must be carried out. Our president’s word has to be ironclad. This duck and cover of waiting 2 weeks before the Congress gets back makes him look weak to the rest of the world. In Syria and Iran they are already declaring victory. But this entire subject opens up a whole new can of worms. Whats our strategy, are we just going to lob a few missiles at Syria then call it a day? No one seems to think that would do any good. So do we get more involved in another Middle Eastern state and go for regime change? Spend years bombing Syria? When in reality there isnt a whole lot we can do. So we need a strategy. Why is it ok to kill 100,000 people but killing 1,200 with WMD the turning point? Obviously the bigger message is to Iran and what would Obama do when they also cross his Red Line?
We are in a lose/lose/lose position right now. We dont want to become involved in the Syrian civil war; we have a president who foolishly stuck his neck out and now has to act – but what should he do. Then we have one of the most dysfunctional Congresses in history and you want to task them with doing the right thing? There is no right thing. There is no right answer.
The reason George W. is in the title of this piece is that he and Obama could not be more different in their approaches to foreign policy. Bush was the Texas cowboy who invaded Iraq and made a complete mess of Iraq and strengthened Iran. But, I think, the world had more trust and fear of Bush than Obama. They knew Bush would follow through. Obama’s message to the Muslim world was one of outreach and compassion. So, why is the U.S.A. hated more now in the Muslim world than when Bush was in office? Good question.
This mess is all Obama’s making; if he had wanted Congressional approval he should have sought it months ago. I dont see a good outcome coming from this.