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A Doctor In Michigan, A College Professor In Kansas, An Afghanistan Army Veteran From Illinois: All Facing Deportation

Lukasz Niec (Poland)—-Syed Ahmed Jamal(Bangladesh)—Miguel Perez, Jr. (Mexico)–these are just three victims of Donald Trump’s nativism, accomplished through heartless policies of the Department of Homeland Security and the Immigration and Customs Enforcement Agency.

Nativists, including White House Chief of Staff John Kelly, White House Counselor Stephen Miller, and ICE’s Director Thomas Homan, are leading a Reign of Terror on all undocumented immigrants of all ages and longevity in America, and having a clean record without any crimes is not enough.

So we are having people here 30-40 years in many cases, who have no memory of the country they were born in, have no family connections, do not know the language of their native country, and in many cases will be endangered and possibly killed by returning to a strange land, facing deportation.

As the three mentioned above, a doctor in Michigan, a college professor in Kansas, and an Afghanistan Army veteran in Illinois–ripped apart from their homes, businesses, jobs, and family members–a despairing situation which will insure these monsters in government and the administration of Donald Trump, will be condemned in history, with Fortune Magazine already lowering the rating of the United States as a democracy which pursues human rights, to a lower category of a flawed democracy, similar to Poland, Mongolia, and Italy among other nations, for the first time in American history.

This violation of civil liberties, and the threats against sanctuary cities by the federal government, are a sign of Fascism and authoritarianism taking over, and it cannot be allowed to stand, by all decent Americans.

We have not learned from past violations of civil liberties and civil rights, and we are living through a dark period of American history.

Donald Trump’s Love Affair With Authoritarian Leaders In Russia, Turkey, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Philippines, China And Rejection Of Democratic Allies

One of the most mystifying aspects of the Trump Presidency is his absolute love affair, his “bromance”, not only with Russian dictator Vladimir Putin, but also with the authoritarian leaders of Turkey, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, the Philippines, and China.

Russia is a growing threat to Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, and Poland, along with Ukraine, and one wonder what Trump would do if Putin decided to invade those nations.

Turkey’s leader promoted violence against demonstrators at the Turkish Embassy in Washington DC, and Trump has nary a comment to make.

Egypt’s leader has established a hard line dictatorship, after a brief period of an “Arab Spring” four to six years ago.

Saudi Arabia is the most despicable country when it comes to human rights, including involving women, and there are no free elections.

The Philippines leader has caused the mass murder of thousands of suspected drug dealers and users, but many of them totally innocent, and Trump applauds him.

China clearly is not a democracy, and while we must work with them on North Korea’s threat, Trump has become a cozy “friend” of its government, ignoring their violations of human rights, and their assertions of rights to the waterways off of Taiwan and Japan and South Korea.

Trump embraces human rights violators and threats to world stability, while being rude and disrespectful to the leaders of our major allied nations—Canada, Great Britain, France, Germany,Italy and Japan, as well as Australia and Mexico.

What is going on in the head of Donald Trump?

Why does he seem to worship authoritarianism and show contempt for democratic nations?

In so doing, Donald Trump is creating an unstable world, which the United States will pay for in blood and tears, in the long run, even after Donald Trump is finally out of office!

The Coming Foreign Trip Disaster Of Donald Trump

Donald Trump is about to engage in a nine day foreign trip, which is bound to be a total disaster.

He will visit Saudi Arabia, the home of the Muslim holy sites of Mecca and Medina, and it will be delicate to do so, after his anti Muslim rhetoric and his attempted Muslim bans.

He will visit Israel, after having revealed Israeli intelligence information to the Russian Foreign Minister and Russian Ambassador to the United States in the Oval Office, and backing away from the idea of recognizing Jerusalem as the Israeli capital, and hinting that Israel must agree to concessions to the Palestinians, as he pursues “the art of the deal”. Also, he has refused to visit Masada, since he cannot have his helicopter go to the top of Masada, and is unwilling to take a cable car to the Mount. He also plans only 15 minutes at the Holocaust Memorial, Yad Vashem, which will alienate many Israelis and American Jews.

He will visit Vatican City and Pope Francis, and has been highly critical of the Pope, who has been dismissive of Trump’s rhetoric and his planned Mexico Wall.

He will be at the NATO summit in Belgium, having alarmed members at his on and off attitudes towards the significance of the alliance, and his pro Russian tendencies that are now being investigated, and could lead to his Presidency in flames.

He will also be be at the G-7 summit with our major economic partners–Great Britain, France, Germany, Italy, Canada and Japan, to be held in Sicily, Italy.

There will be plenty of opportunity for flubs, blunders, embarrassments, and Trump is not good at sitting through long sessions, gets bored easily, and is not willing to do the preparation, and reading, required to be knowledgeable and competent at international meetings with experienced and competent diplomats and foreign leaders.

Despite what Trump claims, he is NOT a good student, and clearly has a variation of Attention Deficit Disorder, along with Narcissistic Personality Disorder, and a likely possibility of Dementia or Alzheimers.

Trump is not up to this trip, which is too long and detailed, and cannot sleep in his own bed, and he is very intense about actually being seriously tested and challenged, as his Presidency deteriorates around him.

Barack Obama made his first foreign trip to Canada, and George W. Bush to Mexico, and after what is likely to be a disastrous trip, who knows if Trump will not just hole himself up in the White House, and scream and yell at his family and his aides, as he faces the end of his Presidency, as a total disgrace to the institution of the Presidency!

Twenty Nine “Developed” Nations Have Universal Health Care Coverage, But America Refuses To Come Into The 21st Century On Health Care!

Twenty nine “developed” nations in the world have Universal Health Care Coverage, including the following:

In Europe, 21 nations, including:

Great Britain
France
Germany
Italy
Spain
Portugal
Netherlands
Belgium
Luxembourg
Norway
Sweden
Finland
Denmark
Iceland
Switzerland
Austria
Hungary
Poland
Czech Republic
Greece
Slovenia

Also, Turkey and Israel in the Middle East have Universal Health Coverage.

Additionally, in Asia and the Pacific, there are 4 nations which have such coverage.

Japan
South Korea
Australia
New Zealand

Also, Canada in North America and Chile in South America have such coverage.

So why does the United States NOT have it?

The power of the health insurance companies lobby is one factor, and the refusal of the Republican Party and the conservative movement to be willing to accept that health care coverage and the protection of life beyond the pregnancy stage should be a guaranteed part of government policy, through a national health care program that covers all Americans, including even undocumented immigrants, are the reasons.

It is time for America to come into the 21st century, and decide that health care is not a privilege, but a basic human right!

A Sobering Centennial: America Enters “The Great War” On April 6, 1917

It has been a century since America entered world affairs in a full sense, as on April 2, 1917, President Woodrow Wilson spoke to Congress and asked for a declaration of war against the Imperial German Empire, the Austro-Hungarian Empire, and the Ottoman Turkish Empire, and allied with Great Britain, France and Italy, in what was called “The Great War” at the time, and later World War I or the First World War.

The controversy over whether Wilson could have kept us out of the war has raged for a century, and his handling of the war effort, and the promotion of restriction on civil liberties during the war has remained highly contentious, and has caused Wilson to decline from Number 6 in the C Span Presidential poll of 2000, to Number 9 in the C Span Presidential poll of 2009, and now Number 11 in the C Span Presidential poll of 2017, all participated in by reputable scholars.

American sacrifices in war had been avoided, as America remained isolated from world affairs and foreign conflict until 1917, but in the last century, we have been in many major wars since then, including World War II, the Korean conflict, the Vietnam War, the Persian Gulf War, the Iraq War, and the Afghanistan War, along with many other foreign interventions in Latin America and the Middle East.

No one can be anything but sober to realize that when Congress voted for war on April 6, 1917, it transformed America in a permanent way, helping to create the concept of an American Empire, and America as a world leader since the end of World War II.

And now, with Donald Trump, the whole history of American foreign relations is in flux, and we face many challenges and crises in international affairs, and the hope is that we will avoid further military conflicts in the future, but hard to believe that is the scenario under Donald Trump.

PBS will have a six hour presentation on The American Experience on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday evenings April 10, 11, and 12 on America and The Great War, our nation’s engagement in the First World War, from many different perspectives, highly recommended to all who read this blog.

Donald Trump: The Demagogue, The Fascist, Dangerous For American Democracy!

It is now past five months since Donald Trump entered the Presidential race, and he is still number one in the polls for the GOP Presidential nomination.

It was thought that Trump was a “flash in the pan”, who would falter and collapse, but that has not happened.

Republicans are disillusioned not only with Barack Obama, but also with Republican leadership, and in the dangerous world we live in, they seem ready to throw away experience and select a man who has NEVER been in government, and has no clue on most issues, but uses code words and incendiary language to draw his support.

It is clear that racism, nativism, and ignorance are reigning today among Donald Trump supporters who seem not to care that most of what he says are all lies, manipulations of the truth, and pure demagoguery.

His appeal includes attacking Mexicans, Muslims, immigrants, the news media, and anyone who dares to disagree with him, and his bully nature brings out the lowest class of people who love his boasting and egotistical nature.  He ridicules the disabled; insults women wit his misogyny; and acts in a fashion that should turn off any decent, intelligent human being, and yet no matter what he says or does, his support seems to remain strong, worrisome for the long term future of American democracy.

But John Kasich, the Governor of Ohio, is speaking out on the reality that Trump is sounding more and more like a typical Fascist, as found in Spain with Francisco Franco, Argentina with Juan Peron, Italy and Benito Mussolini,  and elsewhere historically–the superhero who arouses an ignorant population to follow him in solving all problems, and has no problem in insulting and humiliating others.

Kasich is showing guts and courage, which so far no other GOP Presidential candidate seems willing to display.

Donald Trump must be stopped because he is a danger to America in both domestic and foreign affairs, who would undermine all of the progress made in the past century.  The right wing would prosper under his leadership, as all of the objectionable extremist groups in America would flock to him.

Alarming Police Overreaction Against Blacks Nationwide, As Threat Of International Terrorism Grows Dramatically!

Many people would say that because Barack Obama was elected twice as our first African American President, that racism is gone from American society!

The statement is, of course, preposterous on its face. There are two many people of other racial backgrounds who have shown evidence of discriminatory thoughts, statements, and actions against African Americans and Latinos to be able to assert that racism has dissipated.

If anything, it is the right wing media, and the talk show hosts on radio and Fox News Channel, who are fueling the fires of racism, making whites feel that, somehow, THEY have been discriminated against!

But the recent spate of police officers shooting and killing African American men in St. Louis and Los Angeles, and the choking to death of an African American man by police in New York City, is particularly alarming, as if the law enforcement authorities are perceived as declaring open season on minority men, and even sometimes women, then we are on the road to racial warfare, which hate mongering groups would only be too glad to inspire.

This is a crisis of massive proportions, and no longer can be said to be a “Southern” issue, as it often was depicted even a half century ago, when Northerners wanted to feel good about themselves, and denied that they were part of the problem of racism, prejudice, and discrimination, when they most certainly were part of the problem, although more attention was paid to the Southern states.

This is a very delicate time, with growing inequality of opportunity for the poor and middle class, whether white or minority, and the growing international threat of Islamic terrorism presented by the rise of ISIL, the Islamic State in the Levant. This group controls a large portion of Iraq and Syria, and threatens to slaughter large numbers of non Sunni Arabs, as well as Christians and minority religious groups, and which threatens a world wide war against the Western world and Christianity and Judaism. They already have beheaded children, raped women, and executed large numbers of people in the most brutal fashion, making them seem a threat on the level of the Fascism regimes of Germany and Italy 75 years ago.

We could be entering World War III, at a time when our internal peace and stability is being threatened by both discontented whites, but also by law enforcement elements which show no respect or rational behavior against minority members of society.

There is a sense of foreboding that America is reaching a state of condition the most dangerous since the fall of Adolf Hitler in 1945, and far greater in many ways than the conditions of the Cold War, which seem somehow, by comparison, a time when at least the Soviet enemy was rational, not fanatical, based on religion.

Mix religious extremism in the world at large alongside the racial tensions in a time when one had thought the election of Barack Obama made a post racial world, which now is shown to be a myth!

Central Intelligence Agency Spies On All But Four Nations!

The news has come out that the Central Intelligence Agency, created in 1947, and often under attack for its actions, and its illegal doings much of the time, often without knowledge of the President of the United States, has seen its leader in Germany expelled for spying on Chancellor Angela Merkel, including her cell phone.

This action to expel the CIA leader came about without the knowledge of President Barack Obama, and it has caused an embarrassing incident between a friendly nation and the United States.

But it is nothing new for the CIA to go around Presidential control or awareness, and it has been a constant problem, much of it exposed by the Church Committee (headed by Idaho Senator Frank Church) in the mid 1970s!

The CIA is often seen as a shadow government within our government, not accountable to the White House or Congress or the Supreme Court, all in the name of national security.

Thus the National Security Agency and 15 other spy agencies have a budget that is not public knowledge, and we have learned that they are eavesdropping on ordinary Americans in the quest to keep our nation secure, but worrying civil liberties advocates tremendously.

The most interesting revelation coming out of the expose of the German situation is that only four nations, all English speaking, do not have CIA spying going on in their nations–Great Britain, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand!

So even such allies as Israel, France, Germany, Italy and Japan, among others, are being spied upon regularly!

A Century Ago Today, An Assassination Led To World War I, Which Still Reverberates Today!

Precisely one hundred years ago today, a political assassination led to the outbreak of World War I, which still reverberates today in so many ways!

The Archduke Francis Ferdinand, the heir to the throne of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, along with his wife, were assassinated in Sarajevo, Bosnia, by Gavrilo Princip, a member of the Black Hand terrorist organization, which was out to prevent Habsburg influence over Bosnia, which was allied by ethnicity to Serbia nationalists, and had friendship and support with Czarist Russia.

The series of events that followed over the next five weeks led to general continental war in Europe, lasting more than four years, when most thought the war would be won by their side within months. Instead, we saw trench warfare, barbed wire separating the warring sides, and use of poison gas, with almost no progress toward victory on the “Western Front”, and total disaster for Czarist Russia in Eastern Europe against Germany and Austria-Hungary. It became known as the “Great War,” but it was only great in the massive loss of life of millions of people, and the upending of the traditional empires of European nations in the Middle East, Asia and Africa.

World War I led to the following:

The rise of the Soviet Union and Communism, and the later Cold War, with the downfall and murder of the last Czar of Russia.

The end of the German Empire, but then the rise of Nazi Germany under Adolf Hitler within 14 years of the end of the war, and the eventual outbreak of a more disastrous war, World War II.

The rise of Fascist Italy under Benito Mussolini within four years of the end of the war.

The end of the Austro Hungarian Empire, and the rise of separate nations based on nationality in Eastern Europe.

The end of the Ottoman Turkish Empire, and the creation by Great Britain and France of artificial boundaries for the Arab peoples of the Middle East, leading to more disarray and conflict on a constant basis, and now unraveling after a century.

The decline and fall of the British Empire, French Empire, and other European empires in Africa and Asia over two generations, creating instability in both Africa and Asia, and the creation of new nations on both continents.

The rise of the United States as the greatest military power after World War II until the late 1960s, when the Vietnam War, followed by the Iraq War and the Afghanistan War, undermined and weakened the supremacy of the American nation.

The world and America will be commemorating the events of World War I over the next four and a half years, and a worthwhile tourist site would be the National World War I Museum at Liberty Memorial in Kansas City, Missouri, which the author has visited, and highly recommends to anyone wanting to understand the reality and the impact of this war, which transformed the world in so many ways!

America’s Defense Budget More Than 13 Other Nations Combined!

America’s defense budget is over $600 billion per year, more than the next 13 nations combined, and one can be sure that the intelligence agencies, all 16 of them, are not included in this total, as their budgets, and in many cases their actual existence, are a deep dark secret!

China, by comparison spends one sixth of our defense budget annually, about $100 billion, for a nation with four times the population of the United States.

The other countries on the list include Russia, Great Britain, Japan, Saudi Arabia, France, Germany, India, Brazil, South Korea, Australia, Iran, and Italy.

The military budget is far higher than it was during the Cold War, and too much is being spent on nuclear weapons, and weapons systems that will never, in reality, be used.

But the Pentagon budget has long been one of massive cost overruns, and corruption by corporations that produce our war goods, and meanwhile the one half of one percent spent on “welfare” is being targeted for massive cuts by the Paul Ryan GOP Budget!

It is time for smart spending on defense, not massive waste at the cost of basic decency for our poorest citizens in a country that likes to think it is the most advanced in the world, but yet is too ready to sacrifice “social spending” in the name of mindless defense spending!