Friday, August 4, 2017

Re: USA Africa Dialogue Series - Re: Who will Trump attack first? N.Korea or Iran?


               OK. It is nice to know that we are not dealing with an unpredictable, irrational, narcissistic  loose cannon.


From: <> on behalf of Cornelius Hamelberg <>
Sent: Thursday, August 3, 2017 5:53 PM
To: USA Africa Dialogue Series
Subject: USA Africa Dialogue Series - Re: Who will Trump attack first? N.Korea or Iran?


He's not going to attack anybody. Not Russia, not China and not Hezbollah...

President Trump has a sound mind in a sound body. He sleeps well; no bags under his eyes. He will never be crazy enough - even if driven to the very edges of madness by congress, to bomb Pyongyang. He knows and has been reliably briefed that the response could be all-out nuclear hell and very severe, even if he President Trump himself could continue to twitter his belligerence, safely, out of harm's way, back home, up there in his tower in New York City.

But over there in the theatre of action, too many risks for Uncle Sam's best friends in the area, heavily populated Seoul in South Korea and Tokyo in Japan...

It's no ordinary, smart American that wants to make America Great AGAIN. More is to come, because he has already said it : President Trump in his own words:

" With the exception of the late, great Abraham Lincoln, I can be more presidential than any president that's ever held this office."

He has been a little quiet about progress on the wall, the wall he was going to build along the US- Mexico border, and Mexico was going to pay for it. He was going to replace Obamacare with something better for the people of America - he was going to tear up the nuclear deal with Iran on day one and he was going to move the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem before the sun goes down...

He alone or he and his allies led by Israel and Saudi Arabia in concert (heaven forbid) bombing Tehran, would mean the end of Trump presidency and the beginning of a war involving other nuclear world powers...

Watch President Trump's full speech in Warsaw

On Thursday, 3 August 2017 09:48:06 UTC+2, Emeagwali, Gloria (History) wrote:


North Korea or Iran…Where Will Trump Attack First?

By Ron Paul

August 01, 2017 Information Clearing House,

- President Trump seems to be impatiently racing toward at least one disastrous war. Maybe two. The big question is who will be first? North Korea or Iran?

Over the past several days President Trump has sent two nuclear-capable B-1 bombers over the Korean peninsula to send a clear message that he is ready to attack North Korea. On Saturday he blamed China for North Korea's refusal to cease its missile tests. He Tweeted: "I am very disappointed in China… they do nothing for us with North Korea, just talk. We will no longer allow this to continue."

One press report from an unnamed Pentagon source claimed that President Trump "is to order a military strike against North Korea within a year," after this weekend's North Korean test of a longer-range missile.

Iran, which along with North Korea and Russia will face new sanctions imposed by Congress and expected to be signed into law by Trump, is also in President Trump's crosshairs. He was reportedly furious over his Secretary of State Rex Tillerson's certifying that Iran was in compliance with the nuclear deal – even though Iran was in compliance – and he seems determined to push a confrontation.

Twice in the past week the US military has fired at Iranian ships in the Persian Gulf. On Tuesday an Iranian military ship in the Persian Gulf was warned off by machine gun blasts from a US Naval vessel. Then on Friday the US Navy fired warning flares toward another Iranian ship operating in the Persian Gulf.

Imagine if the US Navy had encountered Iranian warships in the Gulf of Mexico firing machine guns at them when they approached the Iranians.

Facing new sanctions, the Iranian government announced that it will not end ballistic missile testing even under US pressure. The missile program is not a violation of the P5+1 Iran deal unless it is specifically designed to carry nuclear weapons.

So whom will Trump attack first? Let's hope nobody, but with continuing pressure from both Democrats and Republicans over the unproven "Russiagate" allegations, it increasingly looks like he will seek relief by starting a "nice little war." If he does so, however, his presidency will likely be over and he may end up blundering into a much bigger war in the process.

Although Trump's bombastic rhetoric on Iran and North Korea has been pretty consistent, the American people voted Trump because he was seen as the less likely of the two candidates to get the US into a major war.

A recent study by the Boston University and the University of Minnesota concluded that Trump won the most votes in parts of the country with the highest military casualties. Those most directly suffering the costs of war were attracted to the candidate they saw as less likely to take the US into another major war. These are the Americans living in the swing states of Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, and Michigan that surprised the pundits by voting for Trump over Hillary.

Will Trump's legacy be blustering us into one or two wars that will make Iraq and Afghanistan look like cakewalks by comparison? Millions dead? It's time to make our voices known before it's too late!



The UK peddles a cynical colonialism and calls it aid

We applaud ourselves for spending 0.7% of GDP on aid, but this is just self-interest dressed up as benevolence 

 Zoe Williams is a Guardian columnist

23 July 2017, The Observer,

Most of the Conservative 2017 manifesto read like a sloppily constructed plot point in a tale of hubris. All platitudes, jingoism and bear traps, it was it was like the document you produce when you think you can't lose, just before you do. Yet on the matter of international aid, it was precise: we were to maintain the commitment to spend 0.7% of GDP on aid, a target finally reached in 2013 and enshrined in law two years later. But we would, in the Conservative plan, "work with like-minded countries to change the rules". And if that didn't work, we would "change the law to allow us to use a better definition of development spending".

In the context of the aid debate – which has been coarsened right down to: should we spend any money on foreigners, when we have problems of our own? – this seemed pretty innocuous. Money is money: what does it care about definitions? It has its own physical laws, and when you spend it, people benefit. More delicate questions of narrative and framing matter even less. So what if we stop talking about "aid" and start talking about "investment"? Doesn't that just forge a more equal relationship between source nation and recipient? Why not talk about mutual benefit, about how our aid to others makes our own nation safer and more prosperous? If the secretary of state for international development, Priti Patel, has made it explicit that she wants to use the aid budget to "tear down the barriers to free trade", isn't that better than such an aim being implicit?

The definition they seek to overturn is hardly stringent: to count as aid, money has to be spent on poverty amelioration in another country. If that's too strict for the new, "global" Britons, where exactly do they think that money should go instead?

The clues are dropped like breadcrumbs through the pre-2010 statements of David Cameron, the financial choices of the Department for International Development (DfID) and its network of private contractors, and the neo-imperialist rhetoric of the Brexiters, where international standing is based on dominance, and other countries are interesting only insofar as they represent a market or descend into the kind of violence that generates refugees.

In the Conservative vision, our profit and security are paramount, our interventions beneficial by definition – as per Cameron's risible potted history, in a pre-prime ministerial green paper: "Capitalism and development was Britain's gift to the world. Today we have an opportunity to renew that gift by helping poor countries kickstart growth and development." Our version of "kickstarting growth" is sometimes –as detailed in a biting report by the campaign group Global Justice Now – about as much of a "gift" from us as our sale of opium to the Chinese.

But even when you hive off the most egregious examples of privatisation masquerading as aid, even when you conceive of investment only as it works in theory, deals working for everyone and lifting the wealth of all, this is still a monumental perversion of the concept of a development goal.

What is more modern is the spectre of UK consultancy profiteering. "Clearly," said Aisha Dodwell, one of the authors of the Global Justice Now report, "you can't have aid consultants earning a quarter of a million a year as part of a poverty reduction strategy." It has the simplistic ring of an exaggeration, but isn't one: Adam Smith International (ASI), a London-based firm specialising in giving advice to governments on economic reform, has won £450m worth of contracts from DfID since 2011 – £90m in 2014 alone, which was more than DfID's combined spend on human rights and women's equality organisations, and nearly twice what was spent on programmes tackling HIV.

"Aid" has become a byword for the disempowering handout; money given directly to grassroots organisations is a patronising pebble dropped into a bottomless well. In fact, it's hard to imagine anything more empowering than to build a civic network of communities solving their own problems, or anything less empowering than a consultant arriving to give your government a "business advocacy capacity development programme" (one of ASI's projects in Zimbabwe).

Shorn of intent, reduced to at best "mutual benefit", at worst the creation of free markets, it expressly hinders the amelioration of poverty in other countries. And it pollutes our internationalism, refashions us in the image of the rapacious double-talkers who populated the ignoblest moments of our history. It is a lesser remarked element of the post-Brexit terrain that we now talk about colonialism as a mixed bag rather than exploitation. Yet the self-belief driving so much of the arrogance and delusion stem from this revisionism.



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