Tuesday, October 22, 2019

Putin & Erdogan (with Assad shaking his pom-poms)

have carved up Syria like Stalin & Hitler carved up Poland in September 1939. Bad things came of that, and equally bad things will come of this stark and inept betrayal.
Because right now, our friends in the region are down to the Israelis who are riddled with political paralysis handy allies though they are and The House of Saud, which so far as I can tell, could screw up a Two Car Funeral.
Neither of these entities can look on the fate of the Kurds with any satisfaction...
Meanwhile Stephen Kinzer in the Sunday Globe had the gall to compare the Kurds to Charlie Brown's humiliating annual attempts to kick Lucy's Football, a glib and obtuse metaphor that ought to live in Op-Ed Infamy but, we live in evil times and there is much competition in this category.

Sunday, October 20, 2019

So VP Pence gets sent to Ankara to negotiate a "ceasefire"

which any normal mentality would label a "surrender".  Said "Ceasefire" will last as long it takes for the Turks to Reinforce & Renew the Purge of Kurdish.  Hardly longer than the time it took for Air Force Two to clear Turkish Airspace really.
So that is Trump's move really, send Pence, Hat In Hand, to Ankara to get the best deal he can for...who again? The Kurds? The Saudis, the Israelis...US??
Who knows really, we don't have a policy or a plan, Putin has a plan and a policy and it's all working to his advantage right now, what we have....is tweets.
And this is the shameful mishaugas demanded by Trump solely so that he can boast in front of his rallies that he has somehow outfoxed them all and achieved peace with honor.
Let me be clear, Ankara doesn't fear sanctions (imposed on them last week by Trump as punishment  for the invasion the US President himself enabled), no Turkey fears Kurdish Autonomy and is willing to ethnically purge the region to stop it. Steel tariffs & blustering childish letters from gruesomely subnormal US President are a very small price to pay indeed to achieve that goal.
And if along the way a strategic partnership with Moscow is created along with Putin's Vassal Assad, so much the better for Ankara who is likely itching to be Out of NATO at this point.  That in turn is going to create a malign security dynamic for the US in the Eastern Mediterranean.
I have to give Vladimir Putin perverse credit, he is presiding over a creaking declining kleptocracy that produces little in the way of exports save oil, weapons and mischief.  The man has played a bad hand masterfully, he has reduced Syria to a satellite state, brought Turkey into Moscow's policy orbit and is clearly making overtures to Iran.  I doubt he'll even permit a US presence at whatever peace conference he is cooking up...indeed why should he? He and his proxies are permitted to Humiliate this Proud Republic with Impunity, no doubt should his Lackey in the White House achieve a Second Term he will at last achieve the Dream of the First Secretaries of the CPSU, the dissolution of NATO..

Our allies are frightened, our enemies are emboldened that is pretty much our policy at this point...

Saturday, October 12, 2019

A Veritable Munich on Twitter...

I've lived long enough to watch an incumbent US President casually and obscenely sell out allied freedom fighter to a fellow autocrat, I write of course of the withdrawal of US Forces from Syria and the green light given to Turkish Tyrant Erdogan to invade & route the Kurds.
These would be the same Kurds who undertook most of the front line fighting that reduced ISIS to a bloody pulp.  And now those same fighters are naught but cannon fodder for Turkish Tanks.  The whole world has seen in glorious vivid color, the value of a US Guarantee, Ghod Almighty Help this Country the next time we need to forge alliances or even recruit proxies.
Like any other ethnic enclave in the region, I'm sure the Kurds have a lot to answer for, but the ancient foreign policy principle of "My Enemy's Enemy, Is My Friend", does not absolve the recruiting party of interest & some responsibility towards the proxies duly recruited. I'm not saying we should redraw the map in the region for the Kurds, but acting as a good faith diplomatic sponsor and arbiter is well within reason.  But then, this is Trump we are talking about, "subtle" isn't his thing, he doesn't do patience well while enabling his fellow authoritarians is a knee jerk reaction at this point.
Right now the big victors in this mishaugas is Vladimir Putin is it HE that will be the arbiter and interested diplomatic sponsor when the negotiations commence, he has Assad in his back pocket and has been assiduously courting Erdogan.  This pretty much puts Russia in the driver's seat in the Middle East, which is good news for no one most especially Israel.  Clearly the Israelis who have a cynical high regard for Trump (at least until this week) have to be worried, if Trump can throw over the Kurds, can Jerusalem be far behind?
Who knows quite frankly....?
To me though, this is a curtain raiser, Trump sold out the Kurds and if he can do sans paying a political price he'll sell out NATO next, watch for it. In which case I do think that its time the citizens starting quizzing GOP candidates for congress exactly what they will do if President Trump attempts to withdraw from NATO?
Those answers ought to be noteworthy.
The only thing I'm grimly looking forward to is Stephen Kinzer's column tomorrow where no doubt the Kurdish sell out will be greeted with joy and as a sign that the American Imperium is at last over ...Anyone wanna take a bet that Stephen will bring up the CIA sponsored 1953 Iranian Coup...again?

Wednesday, October 02, 2019

A Shout Out to the Indomitable Senator from Vermont,

that Great Progressive, Bernie Sanders.  Hope he is feeling better and back out on the Hustings Soon...I hear tell unblocked arteries release heretofore unknown reservoirs of energy, so get ready for "Bernie Unleashed"!
I may not accord with the man's views, but he is deserving of respect and deference in these circumstances...