Iran

Propaganda, Much Being Promoted By Russia And Other Enemy Rivals, Manipulating And Distorting Democrats, Both Presidential Candidates And Congressional Leaders

It is already clear that Russia and other enemy rivals, probably including North Korea, China, Iran, and conceivably Saudi Arabia, are working on manipulating and distorting the backgrounds, records, and viewpoints of all potential Democratic Presidential candidates, as well as Congressional leaders of the party opposed to Donald Trump.

Collusion in the 2016 elections is clear, and there were hints of such activities being attempted in the 2018 Midterm Elections, although not as effective.

But the big game is who will control the White House, and these nations mentioned above love that Donald Trump is President, and that they have the ability to influence him, and undermine the democratic process in a deleterious manner.

So one must take with a grain of salt all of the negative points being published and rumored about contenders, with the understanding that no candidate is perfect in every way, and that even with shortcomings, any potential Democratic nominee for President would be a vast improvement over the disastrous, corrupt President we have now in the White House.

We are not looking for perfection, but for a President who will put the interests of the American people in the forefront, and work to reverse the damage done by Donald Trump and his ilk, and move the nation forward to new horizons.

Three Democratic Presidents In Past Half Century Promoting Peace And Diplomacy In Foreign Policy

The three Democratic President in the past half century—Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton, and Barack Obama–all promoted peace and diplomacy in foreign policy.

Hopefully, the next Democratic President elected in 2020 will do the same.

Carter promoted the Camp David Accords between Egypt and Israel; brought about the Panama Canal Treaty; and opened up diplomatic relations with mainland China.

Clinton promoted the Oslo Accords between Israel and the Palestine Liberation Organization, although later the progress made was reversed with the assassination of Yitzhak Rabin. Clinton also opened up diplomatic relations with Vietnam. And he also was able to bring about the Good Friday Agreement in Northern Ireland, between Catholics and Protestants.

Obama ended involvement in Iraq in 2011, although later sending some troops back to deal with the rise of ISIS (ISIL). He also opened up diplomatic ties with Raul Castro’s Cuba, although lately, the progress made has been derailed by Donald Trump and by incidents involving attack on the hearing of diplomats in Cuba, not only the US, but also Canada. Additionally, the Iran Nuclear Agreement was arranged, with the backing of the United Kingdom, France, Germany, China, and Russia. Sadly, Donald Trump has backed away from the agreement, and the future is uncertain, including the possibility of war with Iran at some point.

Each of these Presidents had to use military force, as Carter did to try to rescue the hostages in Iran in 1980; Clinton bombing Serbia and Kosovo over murder of Muslims by Christians in the former Yugoslavia; and Obama continuing US intervention in Afghanistan.

But all three Presidents are seen as having the right intention, and did what they could to promote reconciliation and negotiation, rather than military confrontation.

Whoever is the next President needs to revive this tradition.

A further elaboration of this article will be published on HistoryNewsNetwork.org this Sunday, and all of my more than 100 published articles on HNN are listed on the right side of this blog.

Christopher Wray, Gina Haspel, Michael Rogers And Dan Coats, Heads Of Intelligence Agencies, Strongly Disagree With Donald Trump On Major National Security Threats

The heads of the national intelligence agencies testified in open session before Congressional committees on Tuesday, and warned of the dangers to national security that exist in an unsafe world.

Christopher Wray, head of the FBI; Gina Haspel, head of the CIA; Michael Rogers, head of the NSA; and Dan Coats, the Director of National Intelligence, warned that America faced great threats from Russia, China, North Korea, ISIS, and Iran, making clear that they did not agree with President Donald Trump, who has undermined all intelligence, and says none of these nations and forces, except for Iran, are a threat.

Ironically, the three Intelligence heads said Iran is actually keeping the nuclear agreement that Donald Trump has given up, despite the support of the Western democratic nations–Great Britain, France, and Germany–for continuation of that agreement.

The “love affair” of Trump for Kim Jong Un; the trust and secret meetings that Trump has had with Vladimir Putin; the rocky relationship between the US and China; and the attitude that ISIS is no longer a threat in the Middle East, are alarming, and yet all Trump says in response to the intelligence conclusions is to say that these people need to go back to school.

It is Trump who is truly dangerous and too trusting of authoritarian nations, when he has no experience, no background, no knowledge on international relations, and is causing undue threats to the future of American foreign policy as a result.

Instead, Trump sees the Border Wall issue with Mexico as more of a national security threat, when none of the intelligence agencies see any threat on the Southern border, and dismiss the whole issue of the Border Wall as unnecessary.

We have a President who is truly warped in his views, dangerous to the nation, and could be leading us down a road toward true disaster, which could be far worse than September 11.

And we have to wonder why he engages in secret diplomacy without translators or note takers in meetings, many unreported, with Putin, and it all makes one think of the film from 1962, THE MANCHURIAN CANDIDATE.

We cannot afford to have such an uneducated and morally and ethically challenged President as Donald Trump in authority much longer, without a disastrous effect on America and its future.

Even Mike Pence, with all of his horrible social views on many issues, cannot be imagined to be likely to follow the same foreign policy as Trump, were he to succeed to the Presidency. We are at a point where he may be the only likely alternative, but better for American national security and safety than Donald Trump.

Trump Insisting On Border Wall, While Abandoning Commitment To Resistance To ISIS And Taliban In Middle East, The Much Greater Long Term Threat To National Security

Donald Trump is creating an economic and constitutional crisis in his stubborn insistence on a border wall, which will not insure the safety of the United States, and is a financial boondoggle.

Meanwhile, he is abandoning a commitment to resistance to two Muslim terrorist groups which are still major problems in the Middle East, ISIS and the Taliban, leaving it to other nations that have ill intent—Russia, Iran, Turkey, and the murderous regime in Syria—to resolve that issue, which, instead, will lead to the further growth of terrorism, which will spread around the globe.

This is a much greater long term threat to American national security, and one can sure that in the future, we will have some kind of major terrorist attack caused by ISIS and or the Taliban in a manner that will affect many Americans.

This, if it happens under the Trump Presidency, would be a perfect excuse for Trump to attempt to suspend the Constitution, declare martial law, and accomplish his underlying goal of creating an authoritarian dictatorship on a Fascist model.

This cannot be allowed to happen, and the new 116th Congress must resist Trump at all costs, and Republicans who have any morals or ethics or concern for our historical heritage of rule by law, must join with Democrats to insure the survival of our democratic system of government, at what is clearly now the greatest crisis since the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962, when, fortunately, we had a level headed and mentally stable President in charge.

The Temper Tantrum Of Donald Trump Must Face Democratic Discipline As A Lesson Of What Is Coming

The shutdown of the US government over the Christmas holidays is truly “How the Grinch Stole Christmas”.

Donald Trump is showing just how much of a toddler’s behavior we have to deal with in the Oval Office, and he must face Democratic Party discipline and taught a lesson of what is coming.

Trump will not get his way, will not be allowed to waste taxpayer money in such a reckless way, when a proposed Mexico Wall will have no effect on national security, as there are other ways to protect the border in a more technological manner than a wall which cannot be accomplished in many areas of the 2,000 mile boundary between the US and Mexico.

Trump’s portrayal of the danger of terrorism at the border is preposterous on its face, and instead, he should be changing his plan to leave Syria and now Afghanistan abruptly, when the true terrorist threat of ISIS and the Taliban is being encouraged by Trump’s decision to take rash action on withdrawal of troops.

Leaving both Syria and Afghanistan is a dangerous move that not only affects US national security, and encourages a future Al Qaeda type attack on the American homeland, but also on Americans and other friendly nation nationals in the Middle East over the long haul, as just occurred with two young women slaughtered in Morocco in a brutal ISIS manner.

Withdrawal also encourages Russia, Iran, Turkey, and Syria’s mass murder dictator, and endangers Israel, as it allows expansion of Iranian influence. One can be critical of Israel’s government and its policies, but still be concerned at any threat to its security and survival.

Also, leaving Syria put the courageous Kurdish minority which has fought bravely alongside the US and other allied nations in the cross hairs of the Turkish government, which plans a blood bath to slaughter them, and prevent their establishment of their own nationhood, and this should not be allowed to happen.

If Trump is permitted to win this battle, then constitutional democracy in America and worldwide is threatened.

And Democrats and loyal Americans must make Trump’s Presidency a nightmare, which forces him to resign from office, or convince sensible Republicans that he must be told his time is up, a la what happened with Richard Nixon in 1974 at the end of the Watergate Scandal.

Trump must be taught his limits or the nation is endangered long term.

Donald Trump Has Gone Bonkers By His Action To Withdraw US Forces Fighting ISIS In Syria

The absolutely worst moments of Donald Trump’s Presidency are upon us.

Trump, totally ignorant and clueless on American foreign policy, has ordered the complete, rapid withdrawal of all US forces from Syria, at a time when ISIS is still a threat, and many enemies gain by our withdrawal.

Russia, Iran, Turkey, the murderous regime of Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad, and the terrorist group Hezbollah all gain.

The NATO allies–Great Britain, France, Germany, Canada and the rest–, Israel, Saudi Arabia, and the Kurdish allies who are anti Turkish and anti Assad, all are major losers.

Total disarray and gains for authoritarian governments is the result, and we will rue the day that we decided to leave the fight against ISIS, which is not yet totally defeated.

This is all part of a clear plan by Trump to help his friend Vladimir Putin, and Turkish dictator Recep Tayyip Erdogan, and ironically, the major enemy of Israel and Saudi Arabia, the Islamic Republic of Iran.

Our President is clearly a menace, and many Republicans, including Senators Bob Corker of Tennessee, Jeff Flake of Arizona, Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, Marco Rubio of Florida, and Jeff Flake of Nebraska, are coming out of the woodwork to express their disgust and disdain of what the President is doing.

This is the time for James Mattis, Secretary of Defense; Mike Pompeo, Secretary of State; and John Bolton, National Security Adviser, all of whom were strong supporters of remaining in Syria, to announce their mass resignation, and call for Donald Trump to resign.

As I finish this essay, Mattis has announced his resignation, making ever more dangerous the reality that there are no real “adults'” advising Trump on military policy.

Meanwhile, the stock market has been in free fall, and it looks as if the government will be shut down over Christmas, due to the insistence of Donald Trump that there be a 2,000 mile built across our boundary with Mexico, an insane and wasteful idea that will not guarantee security.

It is time for Vice President Mike Pence to speak out against the President, and show some guts and courage to speak his mind.

A Moment To Celebrate The 167th Anniversary Of The New York Times, America’s Leading Media Source, Helping To Keep Us Free And Informed!

In the midst of the sustained attack on freedom of the press going on in 2018, today is the 167th anniversary of America’s leading newspaper, the “newspaper of record”, the NEW YORK TIMES.

Since 1851, the New York Times has published and challenged the American government, foreign governments, and powerful economic forces, who have tried to limit the ability of that paper to report the truth of the news, and the paper has won 125 Pulitzer Prizes, more than any other newspaper. Its motto is “All the News That’s Fit to Print”. It has the notable New York Times Book Review, the New York Times Magazine, and the Sunday Review, all part of its Sunday edition.

The New York Times has not been perfect, anymore than any institution, as it failed to report accurately the Holocaust going on in Europe in World War II; the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in the Middle East over the past number of decades; and has been accused of distortion about the Iraq War, and the US-Iran relationship. The newspaper also has been accused of engagement in plagiarism by certain journalists, and accusations of bias, and public perceptions of lack of credibility and accuracy, including attacks by Right Wing propaganda groups, and President Donald Trump, who talks about the “Failing” New York Times, which actually is in very good financial shape.

Any researcher in just about any field of knowledge uses the former NY Times Index, as this author has done, and now available in the TimesMachine, the Online Archive of every issue of the paper since 1851.

The New York Times was extremely significant in promotion of the truth, when it won the right to publish the Pentagon Papers in 1971, in the Supreme Court case of New York Times Company V. United States, winning over the attempt of President Richard Nixon to prevent publication of the documents that traced the US involvement in Vietnam after 1945 through the late 1960s.

So let us all applaud the courage and determination of the brilliant journalists of the New York Times, who are now, in 2018, doing their job exposing the corruption and illegal activities of Donald Trump and his Presidency, alongside the Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, and Wall Street Journal, along with other media sources, including cable news channels CNN and MSNBC, along with ABC, NBC, and CBS.

The truth shall set us free and protect American democracy and the Constitution!

The Urgent Democratic Platform For 2020: 30 Goals For The Next Decade

What MUST be part of the Democratic Party platform in 2020, no matter who is the Democratic Presidential nominee?

In no special order, it MUST include:

Medicare for all Americans of all ages
$15 minimum wage by 2022 everywhere in America and Paid Family Leave
Free public university and college tuition for the first two years or 60 credits of higher education
Wiping out of college debt which prevents many young people from marrying, having children, buying a home, having a future
Repeal of Citizens United, which has allowed corporations to be called people, and destroy political campaigns with large donations, and instead promote public financing of campaigns
Responsible Gun Control legislation
Protection of Women’s Rights, including abortion rights
Enforcement of gay and lesbian and transgender rights
A responsible immigration reform program, reversing the damage done by Donald Trump, Jeff Sessions, John Kelly, Kirstjen Nielsen, Stephen Miller and Thomas Homan
Revival of Civil Rights and Civil Liberties that have been curbed by Donald Trump
Protection of the Social Safety Net of Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid
Labor Rights promoted, including prevention of “right to work” laws
Environmental regulations revived and strengthened
Consumer Rights revived and strengthened
Investment in infrastructure across America
Condemnation of violations of human rights in other nations, including Russia, China, Turkey, Egypt, the Philippines and elsewhere
Revival of NATO alliance and other alliances that have been weakened in the Trump Presidency
The end of protectionist tariffs, which undermine the American economy
Strengthening of relations with Cuba, and attempts to overcome strains and tensions with Iran, and revive the Iran Nuclear Deal
Promoting total separation of church and state, with religion not being promoted by government
Reenactment of responsible corporation and Wall Street reforms
Protection of Native American lands and properties
Criminal Justice Reforms for those not involved in violent Crimes
National restoration of Voting Rights to former convicts who have paid their debt to society
Decriminalizing Drug Use and Sales, so as to overcome the Opioid Crisis, and allow Medicinal Marijuana without penalty
Promoting funding for the Arts and Culture across America
Dealing with poverty and homelessness in America
Hurricane Relief for Puerto Rico and move toward statehood as the 51st state
Tax Reform to require a fair and equitable tax system for all, not just the wealthy
Reviving respect for Freedom of Speech and Freedom of the Press

Would all of these 30 “planks” be successfully accomplished in the term of the next Democratic President from 2021-2025? Most certainly, highly unlikely, but these must be the goals of the next Democratic administration, as we attempt to recover from the disaster and tragedy of the Donald Trump nightmare!

Donald Trump’s Destruction Of American Alliances With Our Long Term Allies, And His Total Lack Of Knowledge Of History

Donald Trump is totally ignorant of American and World History, and could not pass an exam for a high school diploma, let alone a college degree.

Trump yesterday brought up to the Canadian Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, in a phone call, the so called “fact” that Canada burned the White House in the War of 1812, a total fabrication, as it was Great Britain, which controlled Canada as a colony, that did so in August 1814.

What is the point of bringing this up, even if it were true?

In wartime, harm is done by both sides, and we have plenty to be accountable for as a nation in our many wars we have waged and continue to wage.

Even to bring up the British is unseemly, as this is is history, but we and they have moved beyond this, and to have grudges over actions taken long ago, is a waste of time.

Both Canada and Great Britain, along with other nations Trump has insulted (Australia, France) have been great friends for a long time, and our closest allies in the world.

Also, add Germany, Japan, and South Korea to the list, with them being more recent allies since World War II and the Korean War, but reliable allies.

Donald Trump has destroyed any camaraderie with our long term allies, including the other nations in NATO, and is undermining any cooperation with the European Union, Canada, Mexico, and our Asian allies by his “Trade Wars”, that will only lead to greater tensions and suspicions, and likely worldwide economic depression as in the 1930s.

It only helps our rivals, our competitors including Russia, China, North Korea, and Iran.

The insanity of Donald Trump,and his total ignorance and stupidity on history, are harming long term interests of America, and must be combated in every way conceivable!

This situation even includes Trump’s condemnation of Football players taking a knee for the National Anthem, and Trump rescinding an invitation for the Philadelphia Eagles to come to the White House over it, even though no Eagles player actually took a knee, but at the same time not knowing the words of the National Anthem that he insists everyone stand for!

Growing Danger Of Two Future Wars: North Korea And Iran

After 16 months in office, an unhinged President is bringing America more likely to two future wars–against North Korea and Iran–which will undermine America, with the prospect of the sacrifice of thousands, if not tens of thousands of American military personnel, along with the massive loss of life of civilians in East Asia and the Middle East.

It now seems clear that North Korean leader Kim Jong Un is NOT going to give up nuclear weapons completely, as he well knows what happened to Libya and Iraq, when their leaders gave up their nuclear programs.

Kim Jong Un is manipulating an unstable Donald Trump, and is a lot smarter than our President, and this reality means the likelihood of our President using nuclear weapons against North Korea has grown.

Even if not nuclear weapons, the dangers of a conventional war would be disastrous to South Korea, Americans living in South Korea along with our military forces, and possibly Japan as well.

Meanwhile, breaking the Iran agreement when it is working, and in alienating Great Britain, France and Germany, all signatories to the agreement and not willing to abandon it, only increases the chances of war with Iran, a nation much larger in territory and population than Iraq.

So we are in gloomy times, and must hope that such dangers are somehow overcome.