The Syria debacle sheds light on the thinking of both interventionists and isolationists. The former are furious with President Obama for stalling, evading a burgeoning crisis and then coming up with half-measures coupled with a punt to Congress. The isolationists don’t want him to take action no matter how “limited” and “narrow” he says his action will be. We should fully understand what the isolationist right and left contemplate as ideal national security policy. According to Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), we have no national security interests in Syria.
Comments: This...person uses Obama´s dopey dithering on Syria to attack Senators Cruz, Paul, and Lee (and Sarah Palin) for isolationism. Yeah, Jen, we really picked winners in Libya (AQ) and Egypt (MB) so far. Let´s bowl for the turkey, three strike(out)s in a row.
Absolute drivel!!! Completely nonsensical and illogical in what Rubin postulates. Can anyone tell what National Security Interests we have in Syria? If supposedly ignoring the gassing of 1400 people is sooo very bad; why wasn´t she screaming to attack when supposedly over 100,000 were killed the old fashioned way (knives, guns, mortars and mines). Paul, Cruz and Lee are not the face of this, why mention them? AND SERIOUSLY is Rubin suggesting that we DEFINITELY start WWIII by attacking Russia if they attack Georgia?
My guess is that Obama really wants Assad to prevail...which is why he is allowing Congress to stay on recess for another week...to give Assad time to secure his most valuable military assets. Then Assad will set out an appropriately photogenic target for Obama to hit (to save face)and then clear out and leave them to it.
I´m glad the Egyptian military got rid of Morsi, but Obama probably isn´t. Their military don´t want us "helping" them, and I imagine it is because they think Obama isn´t any friend of theirs.
I don´t see where we have a dog in this Syrian fight. I did during the Green Revolution in Iran early in Obama´s first term, but the President managed to be oblivious to it.
During his entire term in office (so far) I have never been on the same page as Obama, and so if he wants to "teach Assad a lesson", I don´t trust his motives or intentions.
Please, not wanting to pick sides between two of your enemies who are killing each other does not make you an isolationist. It means you possess a sense of self preservation. You save either of them and they´ll take the first opportunity to kill you.
So-called "Isolationism" is a product of failed vision and wrong choices.
Many, if not most, of those who oppose an alliance with terrorists in Syria are for defending US interests. In fact, many of us are for defending US interests and doing so with a goal of total victory in total war - just like FDR. Today, total victory would take weeks and save lives and provide peace in a matter of weeks.
We are opposed to killing people ad wrecking things for saving face or seeking to avoid disrepect.
When Bush raged wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, he was labeled a war criminal by the vicious left. Now when nonprogressives question why we should get involved in Syria, we are ignorant isolationists. The shear unintellectual audacity. Doublespeak worthy of George Orwells worst predictions.
Not too many years ago, hardly anyone disagreed with John McCain when he first said that "the only thing worse than bombing Iran is letting Iran get the bomb." Today hardly anyone disagrees with those who say that the only thing worse than letting Iran get the bomb is bombing Iran. And in this reversal hangs a tale. The old consensus was shaped by three considerations, all of which seemed indisputable at the time. The first was that Iran was lying when it denied that its nuclear facilities were working to build a bomb.
In his disproportionate praise of the six-month agreement with Iran, Barack Obama said: “For the first time in nearly a decade, we have halted the progress of the Iranian nuclear program.” But if the program, now several decades old, had really been “halted” shortly after U.S. forces invaded neighboring Iraq, we would not be desperately pursuing agreements to stop it now, as about 10,000 centrifuges spin to enrich uranium. (snip) Iran’s nuclear program is alarming because Iran’s regime is opaque in its decision-making, frightening in its motives (measured by its rhetoric) and barbaric in its behavior.
IN 2011, the British historian Stephen Ellis published a paper concluding that Nelson Mandela had been a member of the South African Communist Party — indeed, a member of its governing Central Committee. Although Mandela’s African National Congress and the Communist Party were openly allied against apartheid, Mandela and the A.N.C. have always denied that the hero of South Africa’s liberation was himself a party member. But Ellis, drawing on testimony of former party members and newly available archives, made a convincing case that Mandela joined the party around 1960, several years before he was
According to our recently proposed treaty with the Iranian government, Iran keeps much of its nuclear program while agreeing to slow its path to weapons-grade enrichment. The Iranians also get crippling economic sanctions lifted. (snip) Because Iran is not a consensual society, our nuclear deal will last only as long as Iran finds it strategically useful. After their fiscal health is restored, expect the Iranians to abruptly reboot all their centrifuges and finish making a bomb. The theocracy will also use the present non-aggression arrangement with the United States to double down in Syria, energize Hezbollah, and strengthen Hamas.
Critics of the agreement with Iran concerning its nuclear program are right about most things but wrong about the most important things. They understand the agreement’s manifest and manifold defects and its probable futility. Crucial components of Iran’s nuclear infrastructure remain. (snip) The six-month agreement, with ongoing negotiations, makes it impossible for the United States to attack its negotiating partner. Hence the agreement constrains Israel, which lacks the military capacity to be certain of a success commensurate with the risks of attacking Iran. Therefore there is no alternative to a policy of containment of a nuclear Iran.
Before he paused to allow reporters to ask questions about the nuclear deal with Iran that he had just announced in Geneva, Secretary of State John Kerry seemed to anticipate one line of criticism about the accord -- that it effectively cedes to the Islamic regime the right to enrich uranium, despite half a dozen U.N. Security Council resolutions declaring the activity illegal. And he moved, preemptively, to address it. "In 2003, when the Iranians made an offer to the former administration with respect to their nuclear program, there were 164 centrifuges," (snip) today there are 19,000 centrifuges and growing."
In Ian Fleming’s Goldfinger, the eponymous Auric Goldfinger observes: Once is happenstance. Twice is coincidence. Three times, it’s enemy action. That may be overly generous. A couple of weeks back, cancer patient Bill Elliot, in a defiant appearance on Fox News, discussed the cancelation of his insurance and what he intended to do about it. He’s now being audited. Insurance agent C Steven Tucker, who quaintly insists that the whimsies of the hyper-regulatory bureaucracy do not trump your legal rights, saw the interview and reached out to Mr Elliot to help him. And he’s now being audited.
Under the agreement reached in Geneva over the weekend, Iran is permitted to keep one-half of the uranium it has enriched to the 20% level, and is required to dilute the remaining one-half to 5% U-235. It is allowed to continue enriching uranium, but agrees not to take that process beyond 5% U-235 during the next six months. No doubt many people who hear about those terms will be reassured, thinking that 5% enrichment, and even 20%, represents only a small percentage of the total effort (snip) for a nuclear bomb. Unfortunately, this is not the case.
It isn’t surprising that the US and the other five powers signed a deal with Iran on Saturday. Over the past few weeks, US President Barack Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry made it clear that they were committed to signing a deal with Iran as quickly as possible. (snip) Iran will achieve nuclear capability while enriching itself through the deal because the deal gives Iran sanctions relief without requiring Iran to make any irreversible concessions. Indeed, Iran just received the international community’s permission to continue to enrich uranium, keep all its nuclear installations open and build new centrifuges.
Negotiations for an “interim” arrangement over Iran’s nuclear weapons program finally succeeded this past weekend, as Security Council foreign ministers (plus Germany) flew to Geneva to meet their Iranian counterpart. After raising expectations of a deal by first convening on November 8-10, it would have been beyond humiliating to gather again without result. So agreement was struck despite solemn incantations earlier that “no deal is better than a bad deal.” (snip) This is abject surrender by the United States.
As we go to press, the Obama administration seems to be hurtling towards a bad deal with Iran. The administration will claim the agreement freezes and indeed sets back the Iranian nuclear program. But even the New York Times acknowledges that “only some elements are frozen, and rollbacks in the initial agreement are relatively minor” and can be easily reversed. Furthermore, the “deal” would mean the United States would retreat from its previous clear red line—one embodied in repeated U.N. Security Council resolutions—of requiring that Iran stop enrichment.
On November 22, 1963, two other notable men died, and got relegated to the foot of page 37 — the British authors C. S. Lewis and Aldous Huxley. Lewis endures because of the Narnia books (and films), but there’s a lot more in the back of his wardrobe. In his book The Abolition of Man, he writes of “men without chests” — the chest being “the indispensable liaison” between the head and the gut, between “cerebral man” and “visceral man.” In the chest beat what Lewis calls “the trained emotions.” Without them there is no honor or virtue, but only
New York — The anchor who might beat Bill O’Reilly gets her eyelash extensions applied one at a time, with tweezers and dabs of glue, about 90 minutes before showtime, right after a motorized gun sprays foundation over her face, neck, shoulders, collarbone and sternum, wiping out a galaxy of light freckles that spreads across her — Let me stop you right there. Photos of the day Uruguay legalizes marijuana, Kiev police pull back from protesters, aging U.S. prison population and more. Tuesday´s Photos of the day Would you write this way about a man? About O’Reilly himself? At least that’s what Megyn Kelly might ask at
In August 2013 I became very sick with what I thought was a cold. After a few days I lost vision in my left eye and I checked into the hospital. I soon found out that what I thought was a summer cold was actually Strep bacteria poisoning my blood stream. The bacteria blinded my left eye, ate a hole through my heart, caused five strokes on both sides of my brain and forced the removal of my prosthetic left knee. Dr. Lee was the surgeon assigned to perform open heart surgery. What was originally scheduled to last four hours ended
When I was a kid, I knew two different Santa Clauses. The first had a fat belly, rosy cheeks, a long white beard, and skin as pink as bubble gum. He was omnipresent, visiting my pre-school and the local mall, visible in all of my favorite Christmas specials. Then there was the Santa in my family’s household, in the form of ornaments, cards, and holiday figurines. A near-carbon copy of the first one—big belly, rosy cheeks, long white beard: check, check, check. But his skin was as dark as mine. Seeing two different Santas was bewildering. Eventually I asked my father what
Johannesburg - A man who provided sign language interpretation on stage for Nelson Mandela´s memorial service, attended by scores of heads of state, was a "fake," the national director of the Deaf Federation of South Africa said on Tuesday. Asked about the claim by The Associated Press, South Africa´s government said it was preparing a statement. Three sign language experts said the man was not signing in South African or American sign languages. South African sign language covers all of the country´s 11 official languages, according to the federation. It wasn´t immediately clear if the unidentified man was using a
The health director who approved the release of President Obama’s birth certificate has died in a plane crash, Hawaiian officials said Thursday. Loretta Fuddy died after the Cessna Grand Caravan aircraft she was travelling on went down shortly after leaving Kalaupapa Airport at around 3:15 p.m. local time (10:15 a.m. ET) on Wednesday. The other eight people on board were rescued, Richard Schuman, president of Makani Kai Air, told NBC News early Thursday, adding that that there was no indication as to why the plane had crashed. Fuddy hit the headlines two years ago when she approved a waiver request allowing Obama to
House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) snapped at conservative groups that have come out in opposition to the budget deal reached Wednesday between Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) and Sen. Patty Murray (D-Wash.). "They´re using the American people for their own purposes. This is ridiculous," Boehner said at a press conference with other members of House Republican leadership on Wednesday. Over the past few days, a number of conservative groups have blasted the deal because it sets discretionary spending levels in the budget higher than previous levels under sequestration. In the past three days, the influential Heritage Action, Club for Growth, Americans
Looks like this president can’t get away with flirting in front of his wife… It appears that first lady Michelle Obama was none too pleased with the way that President Barack Obama was acting toward Denmark Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt during a ceremony honoring Nelson Mandela, and before too long, they switched seats. This lmao! Michelle Obama vs Prime Minister of Denmark at Mandela´s ceremony. pic.twitter.com/Rq4uF9fTaZ — Stun (@TheBlogPirate) December 10, 2013
Views of the tea party are at all-time lows in a new poll, as primary challenges to establishment Republicans continue to heat up Washington. Just 30 percent of Americans view the tea party favorably in a new Gallup poll released Wednesday, the movement’s lowest point since Gallup began polling about it during its rise in 2010. Also in a first, a majority of Americans had an unfavorable view of the tea party, at 51 percent. Similar numbers of respondents described themselves as proponents or opponents of the tea party: Twenty-two percent identified themselves as tea party supporters, while 24 percent said they
The sign language interpreter at Nelson Mandela´s memorial yesterday "made up his own signs," according to South Africa´s deaf federation. "He´s a complete fraud," Cara Loening, director of Sign Language Education and Development in Cape Town, said according to ITV News. "He wasn´t even doing anything, There was not one sign there. Nothing. He was literally flapping his arms around." Delphin Hlungwane, an official South African sign language interpreter at DeafSA, told Reuters:
THE Internet has been abuzz over the spectacle of President Obama and the prime ministers of Britain and Denmark snapping a photo of themselves — a “selfie,” to use the mot du jour — with a smartphone at the memorial service for Nelson Mandela in South Africa on Tuesday. Leaving aside whether it was appropriate, the moment captured the democratization of image making that is a hallmark of our gadget-filled, technologically rich era. Manifestly undemocratic, in contrast, is the way Mr. Obama’s administration — in hypocritical defiance of the principles of openness and transparency he campaigned on — has systematically tried
If you go down on the ice today you´re sure of a big surprise - a rare glimpse of 20 polar bears gorging on a bloody midnight feast. These photographs show a rare cluster of males, females and cubs all dining out on the remains of a whale carcass. They spent a night and a day stripping every last morsel from the mammoth sea creature. Usually Polar bears are solitary and would never tolerate being so close to each other. But with food in plentiful supply and bellies dragging on the floor they seem too lethargic to fight.Wildlife photographer Michal