Thursday, March 2, 2017

Commentaries, Analysis, And Editorials -- March 2, 2017

Peter Grier, CSM: The Trump administration’s deepening Russia problem

Ongoing revelations about the Trump team’s communications with Russian officials are causing Democrats and even some Republicans to call for a more intensive investigation.

Russia is becoming the scandal the Trump administration just can’t shake.

A steady drip of revelations regarding the Trump team’s communications with Russian officials is dismaying congressional Republicans as well as Democrats, leading to calls for a more intensive investigation into the circumstances and substance of these connections.

In particular, many lawmakers were surprised on Wednesday night by a report in The Washington Post that Attorney General Jeff Sessions had twice spoken with the Russian ambassador during the presidential campaign. In sworn testimony during his confirmation hearing, Mr. Sessions had appeared to say that no such conversations took place.

Read more ....

Commentaries, Analysis, And Editorials -- March 2, 2017

Putin Invented This Toxic Ambassador Game -- Leonid Bershidsky, Bloomberg

ANALYSIS-Turkey, U.S. on collision course over Kurdish role in battle for Syria's Raqqa -- Reuters

As US pressures Iran, parallel tensions grow between Israel and Hezbollah -- Nicholas Blanford, CSM

How North Korea's Kim Jong Un dodges sanctions to keep nuclear program going -- Pamela Falk, CBS

Why Kim Jong-un might come to regret the murder of his half-brother -- Peter Ford, CSM

Analysis: Should US Return North Korea to Terrorism List? -- Jenny Lee, VOA

Rodrigo Duterte’s bloody war on drugs is impeding the sensible bits of his agenda -- The Economist

Is Xi Jinping's political ambition bad for China? -- DW

A Strategy for China’s Imperial Overstretch -- Daniel Blumenthal, The Americna Interest

Pakistan: A Powder Keg in South Asia -- Mohammed Ayoob, RCD

The fate of fragile Somalia is now in the hands of a remarkably young, diverse parliament -- Abdi Latif Dahir, Quartz

Test for Egypt as Christian families flee Islamic State hit lists -- Ahmed Aboulenein, Reuters

Mattis Is Mostly Right on NATO -- James Joyner, RCD

France’s next revolution: The vote that could wreck the European Union
-- The Economist

France's Election Is Giving the World Deja Vu -- Therese Raphael, Bloomberg

Why Germans don't give compliments and how an American learned to deal with it -- Courtney Tenz, DW


B.Poster said...

"Russia is becoming he scandal the Trump Administration just can't shake." The "crime" and the "scandal" appears to be that someone acted rationally and with concern for American interests and acted in ways that might actually have a chance of defusing tensions with Russia that might even lead to a path of possibly ending Cold War II.

While we cannot "know" the outcome of such a conflict should it become hot in advance, there certainly is nothing in Eastern Europe or Ukraine that would seem worth risking such a conflict over. Anyone willing to risk American lives, American treasure, or American interests over Ukraine or anything in Eastern Europe would seem to be a special kind of crazy.

The "scandal" of acting in ways that might actually defuse tensions and possibly end Cold War II was one of the major reasons Mr. Trump won the election. If he can succeed, this would be good for everyone. Such efforts should be applauded and encouraged not condemned.

War News Updates Editor said...

I agree B. Poster

D.Plowman said...

And so the witch-hunt continues.

I remember reading about the McCarthy era in America.

I never thought history would repeat itself.

Jay Farquharson said...

You need to read up instead on the Watergate Era.

B.Poster said...


I'm glad you agree with me. It means allot. I've learned mych reading the links you provide and your dditor comments.

RussInSoCal said...

Its a cultural civil war. And its no holds barred. The Democrats are losing. And they understand that if they continue losing, their entire power structure and value system is going to be entirely crushed. That's why they latch on to any fake news story out of the NYY - or the WaPo. ...and down the rabbit hole we go.

/there seems to be a cycle here.

B.Poster said...


They've gone so crazy that they seem perfectly willing to undermine months of careful diplomacy designed to defuse Cold War II. They are sort of like the petty thug who destroys someone else's property because they can't have it or worse.

They have elements of a person who has used and abused their significant other for many, many years. Their significant other finally decides they've had enough of the abuse, gets up the courage, and finally leaves.

At this point the abuser filled with rage moves to kill or maim that person who spurned them. How dare they do that!??! What better way to do that than to undrrmine the people trying to end Cold War II and really hurt the American people.

RussInSoCal said...

A Democrat Senator today asserted that Russia's meddling in the election "may be" an act of war.

Jay Farquharson said...

Drip, drip, drip.

B.Poster said...

He would need to provide proof of such meddling. So far such proof seems sorely lacking.

I would say placing sanctions on Russia is an act of war. Not only this but it reinforced the view that some were trying to cultivate that Americans are trying to burt Russians and this served to drive the people further into the arms of VP strengthening his rule and delivering a devestating blow to the Russian opposition. On top of this, it hasn't hurt the Russian economy to the degree it was sold it would. The Russians can easily outlast sanctions and the enthusiasm for them is wanning.

While there may be a time and a place to declare war on Russia, the corrupt Ukraine is NOT it. To top off this stupidity, we lost an oil deal worth half a billion dollars over this.

If the senator has evidence to support such a claim, which he likely doesn't or we'd have seen it by now, he might want to ask himself why Russia took this step. Of course he likely can't see beyond his petty bitterness to think clearly.

Jay Farquharson said...

"White House staff told to preserve Russia-related materials

WASHINGTON (AP) — White House lawyers have instructed the president's aides to preserve materials that could be connected to Russian interference in the 2016 election and other related investigations, three administration officials said Wednesday.

The instructions, which were sent to White House staff on Tuesday, come after Senate Democrats last week asked the White House and law enforcement agencies to keep all materials involving contacts that Trump's administration, campaign and transition team — or anyone acting on their behalf — have had with Russian government officials or their associates.

The Senate intelligence committee, which is investigating Russia's role in the 2016 election, has also asked more than a dozen organizations, agencies and individuals to preserve relevant records.

The three administration officials who confirmed that White House staffers were instructed to comply did so on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to publicly disclose the memo from White House counsel Don McGahn."

Drip, drip, drip.

B.Poster said...

The Democrats seem in the process of digging themselves do deep a hole that they along with any Republicans following them may never be able to climb out. This in snd of itself my not be a bad thing.

The worst part is they may have undercut a careful diplomatic process that may have had a chance of ending Cokd War II. There mothers may one day curse the day they gave birth to them.

Jay Farquharson said...

Nope, the Dem's and the State are starting to realize that the Deplorables willingly elected a Russian Agent as President, and most of the Republican Party is fine with that as long as they can destroy America.

After the 2018 mid terms it will be a whole different ball game.

Once again, it's shaping up to be The American Civil War, 2.0, with the same players, the pro-Slavery Crowd vs the Innovators, the Inventors, the Creators and the Human Rights Crowd.

Might want to make sure you always walk around with proof of Citizenship, ( btw, a Passport won't cut it).

Anonymous said...

I think McCarthy is more appropriate, as the media was heavily involved as the propaganda vehicle then in ruining peoples careers through redbaiting.

B.Poster said...


So far our disputes with Russia are over Ukraine, expanding NATO, meddling in their interests in Syria, and a few other things easiky solvable. There is no pro slavery crowd in America unless perhaps you are talikng about rnslaving of white people by African-Americans but even this would be a minority and of little influence.

Mass deportations would be all but impossible. The courts wouldn't allow it, law enforcement wouldn't carry it out, tbere aren't even the resources to carry this out, and even if they could the International backlash against America would be so great it would be pretty much destroyed forever.

As for the "Russian agent" business, this would need to be proven. Rvdn if he is, he's acting in American interest by acting in a respectful manner that might actually help us end Cold War II. Gasp, the horror of a POTUS acting in a way to represent American interests, end a conflict with a major power, and in time perhaps improve relations with them. If this is what Russian agents do, the American people want and need more of them!!

Jay Farquharson said...


Anonymous said...

Check your election map. There are only 8 Republicans up for Senate election, and 25 democrats/independents in 2018. Of those 8 Republicans, 6 are from states Trump won by more than 10 pts. No way the dems are going to reach the numbers 2/3 for a conviction and removal from office in this attempt at a color revolution. As far as actual impeachment, the dems would need to pick up 24 seats. But that just kicks things to trial, and we saw where that ended up with Bill Clinton. And while the trial goes on, we get Mike Pence who makes Donald Trump look as liberal as Nancy Pelosi. Short of a violent coup, the red baiting is a losing strategy for the dems. Even in a violent coup, they should keep in mind that much of the military rank and file, and a large majority of the people who have and know how to effectively use firearms in this country support Trump. So I would humbly suggest to the dems out there, suck it up for four years and start listening to the whole country, not just the major cities.

B.Poster said...


I think you may be right about "McCarthyism." As soneone who pays attention, I could see exactly what DJT was doing from the start. By selecting team members who have close relations with the Russians he was laying the groundwork to negotiate a better relationship. While most Americans want this conflict with Russia ended, they don't understand the nuances of what DJT and his team are/were trying to do.

In retrospect, I can understand why some wanted to be low key about these contacts and even lie about them. There's two basic reasons. 1.) America has behaved toward Russia in recent years like a 7th grade boy who is to stupid to know he's stupid. In this environment, it's going to be hard for Russians to make any concessions publically. As such, contscts had to be kept low key. After a Russian can't be seen cavorting with an American. 2.) Unscrupulous elements in America would be certain to undermine the process for oetty, partisan reasons. I think it may have been here where team Trump and perhaps even the Russians may have greatly underestimated the level of corruption.

McCarthyism seems an apt description. Already good people have been desroyed with perhaps more to come and a careful diplomatic proccess has been severely undermined.

If the diplomatic process fails, Cold War II continues. Where will we get the resources to fight it? We didn't even need it!! The Russian positions were inherently reasonable with perhaps some minor tweaking. The mothers of these people may really curse the day they gave birth to them.

Jay Farquharson said...

Nope, Dem's won't have the numbers for impeachment,

On the other hand, the incumbent Repubs will have stripped their constituents of ACA coverage, plus,

Nixon got re-elected in the middle of Watergate.

Didn't last.


Jay Farquharson said...



Jay Farquharson said...

". There is no pro slavery crowd in America unless perhaps you are talikng about rnslaving of white people by African-Americans but even this would be a minority and of little influence. "

Fucking Alt right Nazi's are everwhere these days.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, I'll miss that $3000/mo. ACA coverage that has a $13,300 deductable that only the subsidized can afford. I guess I should quit my job, and get divorced so that my children can have medical insurance. ACA is great, it gives cheap insurance to the poor by making it unaffordable for people who work for a living. Great system. Obama's crowning achievement. Don't know why people like me want to blow up the system and throw both parties out. Paying 50 percent of my take home pay for ACA insurance seems perfectly reasonable, I should be thrilled.

TWN said...

Debt And Tax Slavery is alive and well, and everyone of us are slaves.

Jay Farquharson said...


So your master sold your wife and children on to another slaver, lynched your parents, beat you with a red hot iron,

Dude, you should look for another job.

Try Costco.

Jay Farquharson said...


Andrew Jackson said...

All you Russki humpers can go F yourselves! Stalin shot his wife in the face,lol!

RussInSoCal said...

The "drip, drip, drip" of nothingness. (and desperation)

Jay Farquharson said...

Love the alt history,