Chemical Warfare

Trump Uses Military Force On Syria On 100th Anniversary Of America Declaring War On Germany, Austria Hungary, And Ottoman Turks In World War I

Donald Trump has employed military force on a Syrian airbase, the villain in using chemical warfare on civilians, including children and babies, in the midst of the Syrian Civil War, which has raged for six years now, with Russia being the major ally of Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad.

In so doing, Trump has done something considered appropriate, but the question is what effect it will have on the Syrian Civil War, on Russia’s President Vladimir Putin, as well as our other rivals in the world, including China, North Korea, and Iran.

The irony of Trump taking action as the Chinese President is visiting him in Palm Beach, Florida, is noticed, as Trump wants and expects Chinese help to deal with Kim Jong Un, North Korea’s ruthless dictator, who continues to lob missiles, and is seen as a growing nuclear threat.

One can expect rapid action by Trump on North Korea after the summit with China ends this weekend.

So we have another President who is able to use foreign policy and national security as an area that may be part of his legacy, and might also boost his horrific public opinion polling ratings.

But we have to wonder whether Trump will be measured in his response, as he seems to be at the moment on Syria, or will end up enmeshing us in massive troop commitments in the Middle East and in the Korean peninsula in endless wars with massive loss of life and treasure.

Ironically, this military action occurred precisely on the centennial anniversary of Congress declaring war on Germany, Austria Hungary, and the Ottoman Turks in the First World War, the beginning of America’s full engagement with the world. The past century has seen America engaged in seven major wars and innumerable military engagements short of full scale war.

So one has to wonder how the American people will react to new military adventures, that might even require the beginning of a military draft, for the first time since 1973.

The Tragedy Of September 11 Twelve Years Later: We Are Afraid, Even In Face Of A Threat!

This Wednesday, we will mark 12 years since the horrifying events of September 11, 2001. and we reach that date in a divided country, basically afraid to stand for principle and against terror and mass murder by means outlawed in 1925.

Barack Obama seems unlikely to gain support for punishment against Syria’s government for using chemical warfare against its own civilian population.

Congress is playing politics and fear–the Republicans using politics and the Democrats fear—and we are about to sit back and allow violation of international law and respect for ethics and morality to be seen as insignificant.

This will reverberate in a very negative fashion, and it is highly likely we will face a greater threat from Iran or North Korea in the future, by our refusal to take a strong stand, and emasculating the Presidency of the United States, which will create long term damage!

It is certain that we will regret what is happening, and there is still time to change course, but it looks as if it will require a miracle!

For the future of our nation, let us hope at the last minute that politics and fear will be replaced by principle, courage, and resolve!

Barack Obama’s Ultimate Crisis: Can He Lead IF He Loses On Syria Vote In Congress?

President Barack Obama is now facing the ultimate crisis—repudiation by a vote of either or both houses of Congress on the issue of responding to Syria’s use of chemical weapons on its own people.

Obama could have gone ahead a week ago, utilized his Commander In Chief powers, used by every Chief Executive in the past thirty years, to initiate military action, but instead chose to promote Congressional involvement, not realizing that this divided Congress would not cooperate!

The Republicans, always vastly hawkish, are now playing politics, except for a few (including Speaker John Boehner, Senators John McCain and LIndsey Graham as the most outstanding examples), who are supporting Obama on what they see as a national security issue. People who would have backed George W. Bush without pause now are refusing to support Obama, in order to weaken him.

But even the Democrats are showing unwillingness to back Obama, and in so doing, are taking away his credibility as a leader.

So with the likely defeat of what Obama wants, a resolution backing the President’s use of force in Syria, it is putting Obama on the spot. Does he go ahead anyway, and do what he feels he must do? Or does he back off, and look like a “paper tiger”, who roars, but has no bite?

It looks now that whatever the eventuality, Barack Obama may have reached the point that his second term will be unproductive and unfulfilled on almost any issue, domestic or foreign, and that the Presidency has been greatly harmed by this ultimate crisis that could have been avoided by doing what Ronald Reagan, George H. W. Bush, Bill Clinton, and George W. Bush did—take action, and answer criticisms later!

So will Barack Obama go down as a failed President, allowing his domestic enemies to destroy him, and try to make his accomplishments, which are many, to be overlooked or even reversed over time?

What a mess we are in, and it makes one wonder, if what this author is stating, turns out to be basically reality, whether or not Barack Obama should consider resignation, giving Vice President Joe Biden the Presidency, and allowing him the chance to pursue the agenda of Obama, with his much greater ability to get along with Congress, and work with opposition leaders in the Republican Party, even though, of course, Biden would still face fierce attacks and challenges without any doubt!

It is very radical to suggest resignation, but one can make the argument that for the future of the nation, if there is total paralysis, and inability to have influence in either domestic or foreign policy, that it is something to consider, as much as this author loathes the idea, the concept, of “quitting”!

The Military Industrial Complex, The Republican Party, And Hypocrisy!

The Republican Party has always been the major promoter of the Military Industrial Complex, condemned by President Dwight D. Eisenhower in his Farewell Address in 1961, but pursued and courted by Republican Presidents Richard Nixon, Ronald Reagan, George H. W. Bush, and George Bush over the last 45 years of American history.

And Dick Cheney, Vice President under the second Bush, personifies the MIC perfectly!

But now we see Cheney’s daughter, Liz Cheney, who already has thrown her lesbian sister, Mary Cheney, “under the bus” to win bigot votes in Wyoming’s Senate primary, even opposing her own dad and mom on acceptance of gay marriage and their daughter, also coming out against Barack Obama conducting a military strike against Syria for its chemical warfare action against civilians on August 21!

Imagine a Cheney taking such a stand–unbelievable!

But it looks as if most Republicans will vote in Congress against such action, overlooking chemical warfare, which is banned by international treaty of 1925, taking place in Syria.

But then Ronald Reagan overlooked chemical warfare by Saddam Hussein in his nation of Iraq, and against Iran in the Iran-Iraq War of the 1980s. with the supplies sold for profit with the knowledge of the Reagan Administration!

So the GOP has shown evidence of not caring about war crimes now twice, by Iraq in the 1980s and Syria now!

The Republican Party, therefore, is hypocritical and morally bankrupt, while Barack Obama is principled and a believer in enforcing international law against war crimes!

So what the GOP is doing will undermine its future long term, and it makes one wish to vomit over the lack of principle and common decency in the party, once proud of Lincoln, TR, and Ike!

Barack Obama’s Speech To The Nation On Syria Next Tuesday Requires Signs Of “Cajones”!

President Barack Obama faces a major crisis and moment next Tuesday, September 10, as he speaks to the nation regarding the Syria Chemical Warfare controversy, at a time when many of his liberal and progressive allies, who should know better, have abandoned him and joined the far Right in calling for no action on this war crime by the Assad regime in Damascus!

It seems clear that not only many Democrats, but also MSNBC, public opinion polls, and town halls are making clear that they wish no action on Syria, because of fear of another Middle East war, with memories of Iraq still fresh as a wound.

But Presidents are not required to follow public opinion, particularly when so often, it is ill informed or just plain wrong!

We do not govern by emotion or mass public opinion, thank goodness, as if we had, we would never have made it through so many crises in our history!

The President has to have guts and courage and principle, and take action, and the reaction of the people be considered, but not be decisive, as, after all, he has more knowledge, gathered intelligence, and understanding of events around the world than anyone else, other than his close advisers!

Our great Presidents did what they had to do, no matter what was popular opinion, and they were pilloried for it, but in the long run of history, they have turned out quite well, to say the least!

These courageous Presidents include Abraham Lincoln, Franklin D. Roosevelt, and Harry Truman, who are listed in the 2009 C Span poll of Presidents, judged by historians and political scientists, as Numbers 1, 3 and 5 among our 43 Presidents!

So Obama needs to take action, no matter what Congress, the news media, and ill informed and overly emotional public opinion feel, and worry about the consequences later!

He needs to make an appeal to reason and reality, but whatever happens, he will be criticized, and better to be on the side of what is ethical and moral!

Yes, he might face impeachment for taking action against public opinion, but really, that will simply be an excuse, since radical Right elements of the loony party called the Republicans, are looking for an excuse to do so, but it is all an exercise in futility, as it was for Bill Clinton in 1998-1999, when everyone knew impeachment would not succeed, and that the GOP would suffer for it, as totally unjustified.

No way will Obama ever be removed by impeachment charges and trial, so go for it, enemies and haters, and Obama will stand strong in any case!

So Barack Obama needs to show “cajones”, and prove he can be a President who will do what is right, and take whatever punishment is needed, as in history, he will be looked upon kindly if he does, and poorly if he caves in on this most important moment of his Presidency!

Ignorance Of History Mixed With Pacifism Leads To Disaster

This author is totally amazed at so many intelligent people who are demonstrating an ignorance of history, mixed with pacifism, who seem to have no moral or ethical problem with the use of chemical weapons. They seem not to understand that if the world, led by the United States, does not react in some way to demonstrate that such immoral and illegal behavior will not be tolerated, then we will see Iran and North Korea and terrorist organizations and others who wish the civilized world ill, utilize chemical and biological weapons with impunity.

Having proved that use of force CAN be done in a surgical way and lead to good results in Bosnia and Kosovo under Bill Clinton, we do not need to have another Iraq, but if nothing is done, then another September 11 is much more likely, and how will Bernie Sanders, Robert Reich, and other intelligent liberals feel, or explain themselves, after such a disaster?

Lack of action is much more likely to lead to disaster than to assert basic moral and ethical principles, that we will not allow another Nazi Holocaust, whether against one’s own population, or a foreign population.

The world will be much more unsafe if nothing is done, than if the civilized world makes clear that there will be no tolerance of mass murder by corrupt dictators as we stand by and wring our hands!

President Obama has asked for input by Congress, but as Commander In Chief, he has the responsibility and good sense to take action, even if Congress votes no, and if the American people act in revulsion against him, so be it!

History will judge Barack Obama correct on this issue, even if it takes years of retribution against him, as sadly, the American people DO NOT always have the knowledge or good sense to know what is good for them and their future. This is the ultimate tragedy of what George W. Bush, Dick Cheney, and Donald Rumsfeld have wrought, and in the long run, they will be condemned in history, not Barack Obama!

Barack Obama Vs Ronald Reagan On Chemical Warfare

Barack Obama is being criticized by many for caring about the horrors of chemical warfare in Syria, and demanding retribution on the Syrian government. His heart is in the right place, as chemical warfare was outlawed in 1925 by international treaty.

In the 88 years since then, Adolf Hitler, Saddam Hussein, and Bashar Al Assad are the ONLY dictators to have used it in warfare.

Hitler, of course, was opposed by the forces of freedom in World War II.

But what about Saddam Hussein, when he used it in 1988 on his own people, and also against Iran, in the Iran-Iraq War of the 1980s, before the Persian Gulf War and before the Iraq War?

Well, the President of the United States was Ronald Reagan, and in 1983, he sent Donald Rumsfeld, then a private citizen, to meet with Saddam Hussein, and arrange for sale of chemical weapons that might be used against Iran in the Iran-Iraq War, which was done by Saddam, as well as attacks on some of his own villages and civilians in Iraq.

So Ronald Reagan has to bear some of the responsibility for what Saddam did, and yet, he never said a word about the use of chemical weapons!

In a situation that involves ethics and morality, Ronald Reagan struck out BIG TIME, and he should be held accountable, but his conservative supporters overlook that, as they build up Reagan as an icon, who could do no wrong!

On the issue of chemical warfare, Barack Obama scores a home run, and Ronald Reagan, again, struck out!

Is America So Uncaring About Children Elsewhere, Or Is It The Same As Attitude Toward Children In America?

The future of any nation and of the world is in our children, whether they are Americans, British, Japanese, Nigerian, Brazilian, Syrian or whatever nation.

And yet, for many politicians, and for many Americans, the future of children is insignificant, unless it is THEIR children!

So we see many Republicans and conservatives, and even so called “religious” people in America, who have no problem with cutting health care coverage, food stamps, housing assistance and other “welfare” benefits for children who are members of poor families, whether white, African American, Hispanic-Latino Americans, Asian Americans, or Native Americans. But of course, all children must be born, but then it is not the job of government, according to these groups, to insure a decent childhood for those poor children!

And for many, whether libertarians like Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky, or Democrats such as Congressman Alan Grayson of Orlando, Florida, and many others in between, the fact that the majority of the victims of the chemical warfare attack last month, and of the two and a half year history of the Syrian Civil War, are children, does not phase them one iota!

Also, half of the people in refugee camps in nations surrounding Syria are eleven years old and younger, and that means that a vast majority of the entire refugee population are children under the age of 18. But this does not affect the conscience of Paul, Grayson, or others, because they are not Americans, so who cares about their fate?

This is, indeed, a sad state of affairs, when the future of the world, children, are looked at, whether American or foreign, as dispensable human lives!

In fact, it is totally DESPICABLE and REPREHENSIBLE!,

It is also immoral, unethical and reflects poorly on those who do not give a damn about the most vulnerable among us, children!

A Moment Of Reckoning For The Tea Party Movement: McCain, Graham, Boehner Back Obama On Syria!

While the Syrian Civil War rages on, it is now clear that a moment long overdue is coming in the Republican Party–whether the anti government Tea Party Movement is finally going to get what it deserves—a total repudiation by the mainstream conservatives in the party over whether America takes a stand against the outlaw Syrian government and its war crime of chemical warfare against civilians!

Speaker of the House John Boehner, and Senators John McCain and Lindsey Graham have come out for the Obama stand, and are ready to fight for a resolution backing the President’s use of force against Syria.

So the gauntlet is thrown down for Tea Party members in the House, numbering about 75, and the Tea Party Senators, including Rand Paul, Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio, and Mike Lee, and others, as we see whether they will stop the partisanship and anti government lunacy, and back Barack Obama for once!

As predicted, a “civil war” is likely in the GOP, and if the Tea Party Movement triumphs, it will doom the Republican Party after 159 years! This is a battle for survival of sanity, responsibility, and mainstream conservatism as an alternative to the Democratic Party!

What Republican Presidents Have Wrought: The Vietnam War Syndrome And The Iraq War Syndrome!

The Republican Party loves to claim that they are the experts, when it comes to American foreign policy, that they are far better than Democrats in executing foreign policy.

But the facts of history tell us otherwise, as witness:

Before America entered World War II. who were some of the most powerful, most influential people advocating isolationism— Republicans such as Senators Robert Taft of Ohio, Arthur Vandenberg of Michigan, Hiram Johnson of California, and Gerald Nye of North Dakota, with the latter two discussed in detail in the author’s book: TWILIGHT OF PROGRESSIVISM: THE WESTERN REPUBLICAN SENATORS AND THE NEW DEAL (Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 1981).

When America entered the escalation stage of the Vietnam War under Democratic President Lyndon B. Johnson in 1965, it was Republicans who backed the President in much greater numbers than Democrats, but even Johnson finally realized the need for America to get out of the war, and decided not to run again in 1968.

Republican President Richard Nixon ran his campaign for the Presidency in 1968, pledging that he would end the Vietnam War expeditiously, and saying he had a “secret plan” to end the war, which soon became evident did not exist, and Nixon made up his plan to end the war as he went along, and it took four long years to end the war, with a heavier loss of soldiers killed and wounded, than had been so under Johnson! Nixon and Henry Kissinger, his National Security Adviser and Secretary of State, misled the American people and lied to them about the plans and strategies to end the war, and it created a feeling of unwillingness to engage in overseas crises as a result, what could be called the Vietnam War Syndrome.

And then under George W. Bush, Vice President Dick Cheney, and Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, the Republican run national government in 2003 lied to us, manipulated us, propagandized us, to begin a war in Iraq, with no plan to get out, and the war dragged on through the second Bush term, and into the Barack Obama Administration. No “weapons of mass destruction” were ever found, and it created an Iraq War Syndrome, which now has made many Americans reluctant to engage in a military action against an outlaw nation, Syria, which has utilized chemical warfare, only the third world leader ever to do so, after Adolf Hitler and Saddam Hussein!

So the Republican Party and its cynical, corrupt leadership in the 1969-1973 and 2002-2009 periods poisoned the political atmosphere of America, making it more difficult to engage in the shaping of a sane, rational foreign policy that would be in American interests.

And now Rand Paul and his kind, libertarian “Know Nothings”, promote isolationism all over again, back to the image of the GOP in the late 1930s before American entrance into World War II.

The damage that Presidents Richard Nixon and George W. Bush have wrought is massive, and undermining America in 2013 from doing what it must do, react to the massive war crime of the Syrian government!