30 11 2015

Erdogan does seem to be loosing it.   First he ordered the shootdown under circumstances that made it easy to see it was a purposeful provocation.  Then he showed no remorse for the killing rather than capture of the parachuting pilot.   Then he claimed the Turks didn’t know it was a Russian plane or they may not have done it!  And then he said it would be an act of aggression against Turkey and NATO if anyone shot down a Turkish plane in Syrian airspace.

Beyond that Erdogan is arresting journalists, killing prominent Kurds, further polarizing his society, and reminding Turks of the tensions between the Islamic politicians and the secular Army.  Furthermore, through Erdogan’s extraordinarily risky manuevers, he now has the Russian bear breathing heavily on his economy, exposing his own government and family ties to ISIS, and focusing in on how the Turks (along with the Saudis) have propelled the Syrian war and thus caused the present oh-so-dangerous quagmire.

ARAB Neocons – time to divorce them

29 11 2015

The Saudis are on a beheading rampage frightening all into submission.  At the same time the Saudis and their Gulf partners have been behind the arming and financing of what is now called the Islamic States.  The original goal was to take down the Baath Regime in Syria, then Hezbollah in Lebanon, then Tehran in coordination with Israel and the U.S.  The Americans were involved from the start, with Obama trying to mask any direct U.S.role while further unleashing the CIA to do the dirty work.

The same UAE that exorbitantly paid the university where I went to law school, NYU, to create NYU Abu Dhabi, is now buying mercenaries from Latin American countries to fight in Yemen.

There’s so much more the Arab Neocon states, led by the Saudis, are doing that’s need so much more investigation and exposure.   But enough is already known  to conclude that the time has come for the U.S. to divorce itself from these extreme right-wing, super-wealthy, neoconish, conspiratorial regimes.  That includes Qatar, a little nothing of a country (but for its immense wealth) that is spending upwards of $100 billion preparing for a World Cup (that it bribed officials to get) while refusing to seriously help the millions of Syria, Iraq, and Palestinian refugees, throughout the Middle East region.  And also little Bahrain which the U.S. along with the UK and France use as a major military base to control the region.

Wrongly Undoing Presidential Memorials

28 11 2015

Princeton University, where I got my Masters degree from the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, is considering some kind of name change or something less in view of Wilson’s segregationist policies.  In Washington there’s a movement to take down the Jefferson Memorial in view of his slavery and racist proclivities.

What’s next?   Taking down the Washington Monument and renaming the American capital city?   After all anyone who goes to Mt. Vernon, Washington’s home, visits the slave quarters.  After that what to do about the Capitol itself, built primarily with slave labor in the post-Washington himself era.

“Political correctness” has gone too far.  Free thought and free debate are at stake, in addition to free speech.    Allowing, even encouraging, the unpopular and unknown are at the very heart of what we use to call academic freedom.

Yes, we can and should draw critical attention anew to what former American President’s said and did in their lifetimes.  But that was their lifetimes not ours.   When we stifle, repress, and punish the very freedoms that are supposed to be at the heart of our country’s being — most especially when it comes to our universities and the press – we are succumbing to our enemies and debasing ourselves.

Miss World Contest

26 11 2015

The contest this year is scheduled to be held in 22 days in Sanya on the southernmost resort island of Hainan.  But yesterday, Miss Canada, was not allowed to board her connecting flight from Hong Kong to Sanya and so was unable to attend the kick-off ceremony.  Anastasia Lin emigrated from China to Canada when she was 13 and has spoken out about human rights in China.

China Canada Miss World


There is now time to deal with this matter and it’s up to the Miss World Contest to do so in coordination with the Chinese government.   What a shame it would be if Ms. Lin is prevented from participating in the contest and if other contestants should then decide in solidarity they cannot participate and the organization has to suspend the contest this year.

Smart people will realize this is a situation that should be quickly corrected and the sooner the better  before things get worse.   The old saying where there is a will there is a way applies.    Here’s a simple suggestion since this is a beauty and talent and personality competition not a political or human rights event.   The Chinese can say that for purposes of the contest they welcome Ms. Lin back to the country where she was born and where her family lives.  Ms. Lin can say that for the time she is in Sanya she will not be speaking about political and human rights issues even when asked.  It’s not an ideal solution, because in fact there is no such ideal solution with both the Chinese Government and Canada’s Ms. Lin having understandable but differing convictions each from their own point-of-view.     But it’s a much better solution for all parties than Ms. Lin not participating in Sanya and maybe instead being interviewed far and wide throughout the contest specifically about the things China is understandably sensitive and concerned about.


FEAR FEAR FEAR – The New Normal

25 11 2015


But all one has to do is walk around Washington DC (now quite a police state), watch American TV (full of terrorist plots),  and talk to friends and relatives, and confused FEAR is in fact the new normal in the once land of the free and home of the brave.   Moreover, despite Obama’s deceptive words, FEAR is in fact precisely what the American military-industrial-neocon complex desires and promotes.


24 11 2015


Russia will and should respond. Using the Turks, the U.S. and NATO have de facto shot down a Russian fighter plane for the first time in history!   Russia will increase its military forces in Syria with the latest air defense systems and add more advanced strike aircraft and “military advisers”.   It will escalate attacks on Syrian mercenary forces armed and supported by the CIA, Saudis, Turks.  It will quite rightly tell the world even more boldly that Russia is acting legally in Syria at the invitation of the Syrian government, while the American “coalition” is at war without any international legitimacy.

The Americans must have given the OK to the Turks, maybe even orchestrated the shootdown.    They have supplied Turkey the F-16s and other advanced weapons systems used.   They have also supplied the Syrian mercenary “rebels”, as well as some of the radical Islamic groups, with the advanced tank killer weapons used also to take out the Russian rescue helicopter.  Russia will respond through calculated escalation.

To sum up this year and last,  Russia was repeatedly and severely provoked by the West, the U.S. leading of course, in Ukraine and it acted boldly and decisively.   Now Russia is being provoked by the West in Syria and it will and should counter.

Very dangerous times, and the great majority of the blame has to go to the U.S., U.K., France, Israel, Saudis (and Gulf allies), and Turks.   It is these countries that have been doing the invading and killing far and wide from Libya to Iraq to Afghanistan to Palestine to Yemen and beyond.  As well the U.S. has been militarily, as well as economically, threatening and surrounding both Russia and China with growing military bases and super weapons.    Now the counter-reaction is underway and it will escalate.


24 11 2015

When NATO, using Turkey, shoots down a Russian warplane this is serious.  Obama was just in Turkey – U.S. warplanes, training, and assistance are provided to the Turks.  The Russians have got to consider this a major provocation from the Americans via Turkey and implicating NATO.   Interestingly, over the weekend on one of the most popular American TV programs, “Madame Secretary”, the President (himself former Director of the CIA) orders strikes on Russia to “teach them a lesson they will never forget”.   The program ended with a space view of Moscow,  all the lights going out quadrant by quadrant, and the Russian Ambassador in Washington summoned at the last minute to Foggy Bottom and “warned”!


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