This Is What Rational People Feared

Yesterday, we awoke to find that Trump had ordered an airstrike that killed an Iranian general. The general’s position was equivalent to that of our Joint Chiefs of Staff, or even Vice-President, and he was evidently revered in Iran.

Critics don’t dispute the administration’s contention that General Suleimani posed a threat to Americans (although absolutely no evidence supports claims that an attack was “imminent”). Both George W. Bush and Barack Obama had decided against efforts to target Suleimani, because they were convinced that such an action had a high probability of triggering a war.

They were correct. The assassination is being reported in both the U.S. and Iran as an Act of War.

Of course, both Bush and Obama listened to their diplomatic and military experts, and consulted with Congressional leaders–none of which Trump did. The strike violated a longstanding executive order forbidding U.S. involvement in the assassination of foreign officials, as well as the requirement that a President seek Congressional approval under the Authorization for the Use of Military Force Act. Of course, this is an administration that routinely ignores compliance with laws it dislikes.

I don’t think it is a coincidence that a military strike that allows Trump to brag about a “show of strength” comes at a time when his bungled and inept forays into foreign policy are being widely criticized.

Despite his much-hyped meetings with Kim Jon Un (meetings which gifted Un with an unearned but long-desired legitimacy), North Korea has announced its intent to resume nuclear tests. Trump’s approach to Iran–actually, his approach to the entire Middle East–has been wildly contradictory, as spurts of belligerence have alternated with troop pullouts and inexplicable  decisions have been “justified” by Trump’s usual word-salad tweets and statements.

North Korea’s announcement, coming as the 2020 election campaign begins heating up, and the Iranian-backed attacks on the U.S. Embassy in Iraq, increased public attention to those failures, and triggered renewed allegations that Trump doesn’t understand foreign policy and is incapable of developing a coherent strategy. Those criticisms have been leveled throughout his term in office, but they have become louder and more frequent in the wake of recent events.

So, like the child he is, Trump blindly struck out.

Since 2016, it has become abundantly clear that the Oval Office is occupied by a profoundly ignorant, mentally-unstable man-child who is utterly incapable of understanding the likely consequences of his actions. The damage he has done domestically is enormous; the threat he poses to world peace and hundreds of thousands of American lives is terrifying.

Yesterday’s media was full of analyses by Middle East and foreign policy experts; most of the people who read this blog have undoubtedly seen many of them. I don’t have any additional insights to offer.

I’ll just conclude by quoting from an article in Vox.

A deadly opening attack. Nearly untraceable, ruthless proxies spreading chaos on multiple continents. Costly miscalculations. And thousands — perhaps hundreds of thousands — killed in a conflict that would dwarf the war in Iraq.

Welcome to the US-Iran war, which has the potential to be one of the worst conflicts in history.

The Thursday night killing of Maj. Gen. Qassem Suleimani, who led Iranian covert operations and intelligence and was one of the country’s most senior leaders, brought Washington and Tehran closer to fighting that war. Iran has every incentive to retaliate, experts says, using its proxies to target US commercial interests in the Middle East, American allies, or even American troops and diplomats hunkered down in regional bases and embassies.

It’s partly why the Eurasia Group, a prominent international consulting firm, now puts the chance of “a limited or major military confrontation” at 40 percent.

This is what happens when self-described “patriots” cast their votes for an unhinged buffoon with limited intellect and a monumental ignorance of the ways of the world. Those voters weren’t a majority, but there were enough of them to elect the candidate whose only “qualification” was a pathetic eagerness to validate their bigotries.


  1. Two Trump lies to get support in 2016 now stand out for all to see. First, he said that he would get us out of the Middle East and bring our troops home. As of this morning the United States has 61,995 troops stationed in the Middle East spread around eight different countries… and more on the way.
    His second lie was all about his son-in-law Jarred Kushner bringing peace to the Middle East. Sure, use your slimy relatives and your personal corrupt lawyer, in international diplomacy because that always works so well.
    And not for a minute do I believe that Iran was about to attack the United States. What I do believe is that Trump killed a man in order to distract attention from the impeachment mess that he and the Republican Party made.

  2. The bigger problem, it seems to me, is the fact that he’s being enabled by his congressional sycophants who once again decide to abdicate their constitutional responsibilities.

  3. ” Both George W. Bush and Barack Obama had decided against efforts to target Suleimani, because they were convinced that such an action had a high probability of triggering a war.”

    President Obama managed to diplomatically arrange a very basic pact with Iran which Trump repealed. He also ended President Obama’s diplomatic relations with Cuba after 54 years; I saw one report that Russia is “considering” establishing a base in Cuba…93 miles from the Florida shore. Trump’s love affair with North Korea has ended with their childish return to “my button is bigger than your button” and a full return to nuclear testing. Apparently Trump finally decided where he would declare the war he so wanted during his presidential campaign. Here we are; waiting for the next move, but which direction will it be from?

    Boris Johnson has already stated their dog ain’t in this fight. The German Chancellor is not agreeable with Trump’s action at this time. We are learning which of the allies Trump has insulted and worked against will stand with us. They are not threatened directly by Iran; only Trump is stupid enough to act on his own ego, bypassing our Congressional and Military advice. He made this decision and ordered the attack while on his extended golf vacation while continuing to fill his coffers with our tax dollars paying for the entourage he took along to his privately owned Mar-A-Lago. And still…Republicans sit silent and idle allowing it to continue.

  4. What happened to that Breaking News report two weeks ago that Trump was bringing troops home from Afghanistan? It seems to disappear like our tax base going to support his family and friends on his golf courses. I immediately questioned the report because; one week after his “surprise” Thanksgiving visit to Afghanistan my grandson in the Navy received orders he was (and remains) being deployed to Afghanistan from February through October. Are they included in the number of his new deployment of our troops or is this current number in addition?

  5. I fear our fragile future
    For the first time in my life, I feel like a refugee in my own country.

  6. I warned on this blog a few months ago that Trump’s only play left was to start a war.

    Steve Bannon misperceived and thus miscalculated the advantage of playing the ANTI-SEMITIC CARD. In 1991, George Bush had played it in Dallas and lost, but COVERED IT UP. See Once Bannon found out his mistake, he cut loose from Trump and moved his perfidy to Europe.

    Consequently, this second-rate SOCIOPATH was now on his own, moving quickly from Democracide [like the destruction of the Weimar Republic in Nazi Germany] to FUTURCIDE [like the devastation to the German people under Adolph Hitler].

    God save us all on Planet Earth!

  7. Wow Shiela – you really put it out there today! Frank talk is absolutely necessary in these times. You never fail to deliver.

  8. A must-read before it is too late:

    “Perilous Times: Free Speech in Wartime from the Sedition Act of 1798 to the War on Terrorism.”
    by Geoffrey R. Stone (W.W. Norton & Company, Inc., New York, 2004).

  9. What Theresa Bowers said, which complemented Sheila’s observations. Anything to change the subject from his impeachment – it’s not about Iran, it’s (as usual) about Trump. Such a sick and dictatorial response to Iranian attempts to buffer themselves, however wrongly, against our attempts to pull another CIA coup or whatever, the shah regime etc. It is now more important than ever that Trump be removed from office, either via Senate vote, the 25th, or any other legal means. Enough!

  10. Nice piece, but it’s Chairman Kim, nor Chairman Un. Kim is his last name, Un is his first name. Korean’s and other nationality place the last name first.

  11. The first thing out of the sewer he calls a mouth was that he did something other presidents wouldn’t do….. Yes, Gerald has it right. Now that his lies have come home to roost and his pathetic psyche has started a war to cover up his lies and his crimes, the rest of the world will pay the price.

    If and when Iran gets a nuclear warhead, they will now use it as fast as they can. They don’t care about people dying. Hell, their war with Iraq killed a million people, and they are still enemies…at least they were until Trump entered the picture. Now, EVERY Shia population will be united against our country.

    Rational people warned everyone about Trump, but no… Whiney little bitches voted for him because he told them he would relieve their perceived oppression. Then he oppressed them some more. Ninety two million registered voters stayed home in 2016 because they swallowed the bullshit about Hillary coming from the RNC’s anti-American, anti-Constitution corporate machinery.

    We will now enter the darkest period of our existence since 1929. As Rick Wilson’s aptly titled book says, “Everything Trump Touches Dies.” For those of you who have relatives and loved ones in uniform, you have my deepest sympathy. Until our uniformed people rise up and remove this bastard, they will be forced to fight his misbegotten wars.

    No, Marv, God isn’t going to help us. WE the people have to help ourselves.

  12. Gerald,

    I’m afraid the 25th Amendment is out of the question. The “principal officers of the executive departments” have apparently sworn fealty to 45, rather than the Constitution. They did this in order to keep their jobs and because they are sniveling cowards. Additionally, the Congress has never provided by law any other such body. Even with this remedy, in the end, it is still Congress who decides and they could do that today with impeachment, if they wanted to.

    Going forward, we have a lot to consider. Should Congress enact penalties for Constitutional violations? Should we have an independent body to evaluate the fitness of a President? Should we have an independent body to evaluate the fitness of Federal judges? I think it’s pretty clear we need to repeal the use of Forces bill that allowed Bush to send men to Iraq and continues to be used to send forces anywhere a President pleases.

    God help us all. VOTE BLUE.

  13. Marv,

    First, you are not the arbiter of what I can and can’t do. Second, the same could be said for your missives. Third, don’t you have better opinions and snark to deliver to everyone on this blog?

    We aren’t living in 1985 Dallas.

  14. Wow, there is so much to unpack here, one of the things that a lot of folks seem to skim over, Iran/Iranians are Persian, they are not Arab. The Persians have a very powerful ancient history. The Persian religion was Zoroastrianism, and even though the Muslim faith has great inroads in Persia, Zoroastrianism and its God Ahura Mazda have omnipotent power. It is also a very ruthless God. King Cyrus the great was one of many powerful kings, King Cyrus also released the Jews from captivity and had God’s temple rebuilt. So not only was he powerful, he was a magnanimous individual. As of now most of Iran is of the Shia faction of the Muslim faith, Iraq was ruled by Saddam Hussein which was Sunni. His powers offset each other before Bush Senior and Junior got their fingers in the mix. And let’s not forget, Zoroastrianism is not a dead religion and does maintain a very large following in the region.

    My stepfather was a Syrian man who used to discuss the region all the time, he died trying to get his mother and brothers out of Syria during the Isis uprising, he was a good man and taught me a lot about the middle east. The fact remains, Persians were/are the most feared in the area because of their ruthless history, even more so than the Ottoman Turks which were feared on the battlefield as ruthless and merciless fighters. The Persians speak Farsi and the Arabs speak a more colloquial Semitic Arabic (Related to Aramaic and probably the language Christ spoke). A lot of times are has to be interpreters present for both to communicate. The intense resentment against the West for drawing up artificial maps concerning borders and boundaries of the Arab countries that were not customary to them nor appreciated. The puppet rulers put in power by the West were very brutal to the people in those countries. The boundaries were drawn up not by religion and affiliation, but by convenience for the West. The resentment is deep, and I guarantee, that’s not going anywhere anytime soon.

    Like I said earlier, Persians are not Arabs, they don’t think in the same terms as Arabs. I would venture to say, Iran already has assets in this country, and more than likely, if the opportunity arises, were going to see that play out here. Persians have been around much longer than the Muslim faith has, and their traditions are much different than the Arabs along with their ferocity. True, Trump has been itching to use a nuke, but, if he does that, he will definitely risk retaliation from other nuclear states. What’s the difference if somebody sets off a car bomb, and then decides to set off a dirty bomb, or a suitcase nuke? The bomber is going to die one way or the other, more than likely. You could best believe that Iran already has a nuke somewhere, just as North Korea had one for quite some time.

    Now you can see what happens when a bully and a coward has control of great power, he could pretend he’s anything he wants to be because he is the most powerful man on the planet. That’s a danger Which can’t be understated. The Senate had better focus on the greater good, instead of trying to cement supreme authority in an authoritarian government. I think the current POTUS greatly underestimated the Persian Iranians. To the detriment of American lives. So we shall see, what we shall see! POTUS has constantly talked about oil, and he’s made oil a central theme in his thinking process, if you can call it that. Persian Iran has the ability to drive oil well over the $100 a barrel amount. I’m sure Glad my vehicles get over 45 miles per gallon. I just fear this will be the tip of the iceberg!

  15. Our only chance is to reach the minds of a significant number of Trump’s evangelical and Tea Party followers and/or their family members:

    My law office, before I left Texas, was situated on the highway between a small city, Greenville, the county seat for Hunt County and a small town, Emory, the county seat for Rains County which had a Klansman sitting as the District Court judge. A replicate of my office on the highway between the two counties is pictured in the movie: THE CHAMBER [Instead of Marvin G. Kramer & Associates, it’s Marvin B. Kramer and Associates].

    I must admit that It did help, somewhat, that my ex-wife’s great grandfather was the first attorney in Rains County. Nevertheless, I never lost a jury trial in either county despite, sporadic, anti-Semitic outbursts by the county prosecutors.

    The point I’m trying to make, despite any “personal barrage,” is that our political opponents protect their backside like everyone else. See for my results.

    The point I’m trying to make is that Trump’s follower do not want bombs dropped on their heads any better than we do.

  16. I guess everybody in the media has forgotten that when the Iraqi army scurried away from ISIS as it captured vast swaths of Iraq, Qassem Suleimani and the Quds forces from Iran fought in tandem with the Kurds Peshmerga to drive them out of Iraq (with U.S air and logistics support). That began in 2014 and accounts for his presence and freedom of movement in Iraq.

    I’m not saying he was a good guy. I’m just saying that there were a lot of alternatives to a targeted assassination.

  17. Vernon; thank you for speaking out. God gave us free will; leaving the decision on options put before us in our hands. More than 20 years ago Oprah Winfrey dedicated a program to a Holocaust survivor; at the end of the program she asked the woman how she could maintain her faith in God while living in Hell. Her answer was; “When God gave us free will; he put the choices in our hands, I believe God cries too.”

    We need to stop blaming Him/Her for the troubles in this world and expecting Him/Her to save us from our poor choices.

  18. What is even more vital is, again, a President went to war without consulting/informing Congress. An administrative spokesperson cited the 2002 precedent given to Bush to go after terrorists. This policy desperately needs changing to restore some checks and balances.

  19. Inside of Trump’s tiny mind (I apologize to the concept of “mind”), there’s a war not against but between incompetence and corruption. This week incompetence won because in the last several months corruption had pulled into the lead in terms of the celebrity metric.

    The exercise of either of course costs we the people big time. Corruption costs us global standing and upcoming years of rebuilding support in the world and literally countless dollars but incompetence could cost us everything else.

    I wrote in 2016 that my stretch goal for the upcoming four years was to avoid a nuclear holocaust and I had gotten complacent in terms of the time left and no sign yet.

    Perhaps the impeachment and removal process was much more urgent that we thought.

  20. Vernon,

    I don’t believe I’m that outdated like your books for example. In 2018, when I was more active on the blog, 12,885 visits were made to my website that I had used for identification on this website. According to GoDaddy analytics: 10% did not come from visitors to this blog, but 90% did.

  21. There is no lack of shock and destruction coming from this administration. The fact that Rs in Congress continue to defend whatever 45 does is deplorable.

    I have no doubt this act of aggression was done in order to take the spotlight off of 45’s impeachment and the recent news of more damning evidence that confirms his self-serving actions that brought about his impeachment.

  22. Trump’s action, devoid of consideration of consequences or of advice from people who understand its implications, is the ultimate provocation for war. If I were Pence or CIA Director Haspel or Mike Pompeo, I would seek protective custody or refuge in a major U.S. military base. The Iranian response will not be gentle.

    Unfathomably, the Trump assassination of Suleimani was insanely disproportionate to any known provocation. As iconic as he was in Iran, Suleimani was simply carrying out the orders of higher ups in his government. Does Trump erroneously believe that he will not be replaced with someone of equal competence and perhaps more viciousness? This surpasses even the president’s mindless withdrawal of troops from northern Syria in its thoughtlessness and apocalyptic implications. Iran will now redouble its efforts to build a nuclear capability, and will not be shy about when and where it uses those weapons. Now that the least stable region of the world has been further destabilized, we are all in for a very wile ride rife with surprises.

  23. John Sorg, Mid East history is critical to understand the total mess western colonialism left there in its wake.

    Another interesting factoid. Kurds are Persians.

  24. Well we have heard this story before from the Military-Industrial Pentagon Complex of how General Suleimani was a clear and present danger or some other description of how dangerous he was. This is just an accepted fact, the names change through history, the idea though we have to unleash our Murder Inc., on the world is never questioned by the vast majority of American people.

    As I have written here before since 1945, the USA has been the most violent country on the face of the earth. The simple solution would be to withdraw all American troops from Syria, Iraq, and Afghanistan.

    From Common Dreams:

    The surge in defense stocks was readily highlighted on corporate television programs like Fox Business and in publications like Investor’s Business Daily, which noted that “Northrop Grumman (NOC) and Lockheed Martin (LMT) were big winners in Friday’s stock market trading, along with Raytheon stock.”

    Citigroup analyst Jonathan Raviv wrote Friday that “if Middle East conflict were to ratchet up…we think it could be tougher for Democratic Party electoral candidates to argue against a stronger defense budget in 2020.”

    “As is always the unfortunate case, defense stocks tend to benefit from perceptions of heightened risk and the potential for geopolitical conflict,” Raviv added.

  25. What kind of democracy is it when your vote decides ONLY who gets to do the bidding of big business like Northrop Grumman, Lockheed Martin, Raytheon, and the like?

    What kind of citizen believes the way to correct the situation above is for more people to participate in deciding who gets to do the bidding of big business?

  26. Good point Larry!


    You are absolutely correct. It’s interesting how Europeans seem to have thought/think that Arabs and Persians and Kurds and Turks for that matter, were a bunch of rubes. Really, modern medicine, algebra and other complex mathematics originated with the Arabs.

    Before the American meddling along with the Europeans, the Arabian Peninsula consisted of 4 regions. Most of those regions contained people of like minds and the like religions and like language. The Sykes Picot agreement changed all of that, lines were drawn up for the convenience of European and American powers that also included Russia and Germany. Oil was the key player in how is divvying up process took place. Brutal dictators were put in charge to quell outrage of the common man. The hatred for the West goes Way beyond the Crusades, after the 1st world war they decided to carve up the Ottoman Empire, they wanted to take some of the wind out of their sales, although that wasn’t the only reason. It was a wealth grab. Oil and Gems.

    The hatred runs deep towards Europe and the West including the United States. Unfortunately, an extremely putrefied mind and I’m just not talking about the current POTUS here, finds it difficult to grasp. And for some reason the West refuses to leave them alone! Just to get out and leave them alone, they will settle their own problems. Unfortunately the West has been meddling in the affairs of the Middle East for millennia. Too bad the West finds it incapable to solve its own problems i.e. 2 world wars. That definitely doesn’t sound like intellectual superiority.

    It’s only a matter of time before there is another 9/11, but on a much grander scale. Is obvious that the United States along with others, have not learned their lesson, Leave Them Alone! Being over there under the guise of trying to save Arabs, Persians, Turks, and Kurds, from themselves is hypocritical to say the least. It’s going to happen, I just hope I’m not around that location when it does.

    They will stand at a distance because of their fear of her torment and say: ‘Too bad, too bad, you great city, Babylon you strong city, because in one hour your judgment has arrived!’ (Revelation 18th chapter)

  27. It was all about Oil ever since the navies in the West and Japan converted from coal fueled naval vessels to oil. Modern armies and air forces of the early 20th century also needed oil.

    Friendly puppet dictatorships in the Middle East were established to keep the oil flowing. The USA and British Coup in Iran in 1953 was all about controlling Iranian Oil. The pathetic Shah of Iran was a puppet of the USA and British.

    Since 1953 no matter who was President the power of the American War Machine, was used to enforce the control of the oil fields.

    It is interesting the two countries in the Middle East that hate the Iranians with a passion are Israel and Saudi Arabia. President Agent Orange has gone out and supported both Israel and Saudi Arabia with a blank checks. Who knows what is in this relationship for President Agent Orange??? Well money is good answer.

    I have been looking at my Facebook “Friends” who are strong followers of President Agent Orange. Naturally, they are flag waving our troops onto the Middle East as they sit on their collective fat asses on a computer. President Agent Orange is hailed by these Trumpter’s as the stand-up example of a Male Authoritarian Leader in contrast to Obama’s weak knees. Although truth be told Obama did his share of drone attacks also.

    The CIA coined a phrase “Blow Back” to describe the reaction to American meddling that happens. We can at this point only wait for Iranian or their allies blow back.

  28. “I’m fed up to the ears with old men dreaming up wars for young men to die in.”
    ― George McGovern

    There will be blood.

  29. M L

    Yep, sitting on their couches waving their flags sending out Mass texts with the picture of the American flag.

    King Farouk of Egypt was a prime example of the evil the West had done to the Middle East and carving it up into little pieces.

    he would walk down the street and see a woman he liked, and take her for his wife even if she belong to someone else. If he was driving a white car, there could not be any other white cars on the street, and no one could wear what he was wearing. King Farouk lopped off enough heads to build his own Hadrian’s wall with them.

    So, the faux concern from the West about these leaders conduct in the Middle Eastern countries, was all for consumption at home. They did not give a rat’s butt about the citizens in the Middle East.

    It was about the oil, it’s always been about the oil, and it was up to those ruthless leaders to keep their populations under control if they wanted to get their palms greased and not be removed by an assassins bullet. Look at what happened to Anwar Sadat and Yitzhak Rabin when they legitimately looked for peace.
    the list of despotic leaders that the United States supported on and off over the years is endless. All to the detriment of the citizenry of the region.

    Maybe this is the incident that will touch off the pyrotechnics stash that is the Middle East, if it does, I don’t think they’ll be much left of Israel or almost anything else there. And it has the possibility of spreading Way beyond Middle Eastern borders.

    The level of despair because of violence, brutality and hatred is going to make people wish the mountains would fall over the top of them. Is this the evil that men do? Yes! because once they get to a certain point, they have no belief in good, or the desire to do good.

    You can see that with all of the wannabes setting on their big fat backsides waving the flag of patriotism. Patriotism is just another word for sedition.

  30. Lived and worked in Jerusalem three years 2005-2008. I led a workforce of 140 roughly including equal part Christian, Jewish and Muslim. Very strong contingents both Arabs and Israeli. History of trade routes for silk, salt and spices funneled through from middle and far east to Phoenecian shippers on Mediterranean to Europe and North Africa. A lot of passionate DNA weaves complex loyalties long before George Washington and his colonial terrorists defeated the King’s forces. Very insightful posts here stimulated by another thought provoking piece by Shiela. John Sorg’s reminder we are dealing with descendants of a very proud and sophisticated Persian culture is very significant. General Suleimani’s proxy war strategy will continue once his followers break from mourning and superiors vet succession. In the meantime, all things considered, it may be good to be reminded of the distinction among Shia and Sunni and how that distinction plays out in the proxy wars ahead of us. God have mercy upon our grand children. The man we elected President had just set us back another 30 years for any glimmer of hope for reconciliation or hope for peace at home and abroad. Perhaps he prefers this legacy over the shame of an impeachment trial in the Senate … assuming there was even the prospect of one. The certainlty of war for him is a far better scenario than the unbearable uncertainty of Congress deadlocked in total dysfunction.

  31. Thanks as always Sheila,

    My hat, was wearing one, would be off to congratulate our dear President for once again setting in motion what we’re trying to prevent. The hit via drone strike on Iranian Maj. Gen. Qassim Suleimani, leader of that country’s Revolutionary Guard and its Quds Force, has done more to bring this country to the brink of war with Iran than anything else in recent memory and it was done without any credible strategy of any kind backing it up. We must remember that our dear President deals with things only through his most recent thoughts or whims. His attending sycophants then carry out those most recent thoughts and whims regardless of how outrageously stupid they may be. In this particular instance he and they have outdone themselves.

    General Suleimani deserved what he got given the enormous amount of blood on his hands but there will be much more blood spilled as a result of this overreach by our dear President and those that should have known better than to do this. Most Americans may not realize that since our initial military operations in both Iraq and Afghanistan somewhere between 400,000 and 600,000 people have died either at our hands or at those of those we were fighting. Most Americans also may not realize that the reason Iran has become such a bitter enemy of this country goes back nearly 70 years through our meddling in their political affairs which left them at the mercy of a brutal imperialist dictator that led ultimately to their revolution against that dictator in 1979.

    This country and its successive political and military leadership only seems to be able to accomplish one thing when it comes to the Middle East-setting in motion what we or any other sane country would hope to prevent. In regard to Iran we have been dealing with what is referred to in CIA circles as blow back with a majority of Americans being totally ignorant of the long relationship between this country and Iran and why there is so much friction between us largely of our own making. In this particular instance that blow back will very likely be a mutha.

  32. Thanks Noriss and Tom,

    I know a lot of people in this country who are from that region of the world. Businessmen, doctors, and lawyers. How these folks became thought of as animals not worth anything but death is way beyond my pay grade I suppose. The current POTUS talking about dipping bullets and pigs blood and things like that, let you know exactly what was on his mind. Just like when he talked about Mexicans being rapists and drug dealers, and we see what he’s done on that front also. And his misogynistic conduct against women, by his comment that he could grab them by the Kitty cat, and they would accept it because of who he is.

    It’s all one in the same, an uneducated loutish ignoramus that thinks he’s a genius is in charge of the nuclear football! That scary, and he’s been itching to use it. He figures he would be revered among every bigot on the planet if he could annihilate a country that is thought of as a SHIT HOLE. The reason they are thought of that way is because they aren’t white European. Because we know white Europeans hold the key to life’s panacea. Why do you think Eugenics was started in England and the United States almost simultaneously. Everything that Germany can be pigeonholed for, started originally in the United States and England for that matter. So many of our corporations were collaborators with the Nazis, even building war equipment to kill men and women from this country.

    A lot of these religious evangelical lunatics think that the final conflict will take place in that region, but but because of a complete ignorance of understanding the difference between prophetic utterances and foreknowledge. So, they blindly and mindlessly slog ahead, dragging their propaganda with them, further disrupting the lives of their fellow humans, brothers and sisters, neighbors, and threatening their lives. How sad! And how sad they refused to become enlightened. They would rather whip themselves in a willfully ignorant frenzy listening to a litany of ignoramuses, rather than researching and becoming willfully knowledgeable or willfully enlightened. That’s why the current POTUS said how much he loves stupid people, even if you have a doctorate degree you can still be stupid, a piece of paper doesn’t make someone smart, it just means they’ve went through an educational program and by all intents and purposes, passed.

  33. Considering he has pissed off most of our allies, he’ll have a tough time trying to recruit any help. Would you like some “Freedom Fries” with your borscht?

  34. I had Joy Reid (MSNBC) on this morning while I was doing other things. She played an interesting tape where a man was saying how the President was worried about reelection and since his presidency wasn’t doing well, he was going to start a war. Yes, this man was certain that the fear of the election was going to cause the President to go to war against Iran.

    The year was 2011 and the man speaking was none other than Donald Trump, media personality.

    John Sorg – thank you for going over the history and anthropology of the region – it adds an essential perspective – You are right that Aramaic was the probable language that Jesus spoke, as it was the “vernacular” at the time and is still used in some Jewish prayers. It is also the language of the Chaldean Christians (a large population of whom settled in the Detroit suburbs).

    I did have an interesting lunch with an Egyptian friend today who actually brought up the military coup that overthrew King Farouk. He, from conversations with his father, had a more benign view of the King and considered the coup leaders, including Nasser, as mid-level military men with the ego of Trump who just wanted the power for themselves. He contrasted this to the school books he read when he was growing up where the King was badmouthed extensively.

    I also got a different view of the Persians from some Persian friends. They are all either Jewish or Bahai, who left to avoid persecution, so that might shade things. Their perspective leads me to see a great irony – more Iranians — and more Israelis — would just like to stop the fighting and become upper middle class European type countries and think about settling down, vacations, who won Eurovision, or who won the latest football match. Both countries are, unfortunately, now ruled by right-wing war mongers.

    General Suleimani, for whatever his many faults, fit into the definition of a “high government official”, for whom the international norm has been “hands off”. It is a line that isn’t crossed (US violations of this norm have been limited to smaller countries done covertly). Trump has never been one to observe norms. His ego is all that matters.

  35. Len, yes.

    Very good points, a Egyptian Doc. Friend of mine talked about Farouk, no doubt he was a bad dude. And yes, high-ranking government officials for always hands off, because they didn’t want to have those governments sending assassins for them. He might have just cracked the door for all heck breaking loose. He better increase his security, because those Iranian special forces are bad dudes.

  36. George,

    “How many more AMERICANS did this radical GENERAL have to KILL before we would have been “justified” to “take him out of circulation”?”

    I’m afraid many more Americans will be killed by the assassination of this “radical General” than what has occurred through his own doings. What about our allies? We are probably stuck with Trump, I’m no so sure our allies are.

    Trump made this horrific decision for one move and one move only. It was to protect his own ass. That’s all.

  37. Yesterday, a friend of mine reminded me about the book “Fail-Safe,” co-authored by my partner, Harvey Wheeler, and Eugene Burdick, who was also the co-author of the “The Ugly American.” “Fail-Safe” was later made into a movie starring Henry Fonda and Walter Matthau.

    For those who remember the book or movie, a mistake was made by our strategic air force, and we ended up dropping an atom bomb on the Soviet Union. Our President was then left with a decision to prevent a world war. His answer through much soul searching was that we would have to bomb ourselves in order to preserve the peace. That’s what he did. He equalized it.

    Maybe we should remember this as we await the retaliation that must come from Iran and what our next response should be.

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