Friday, April 07, 2017

Trump's military escalation in Syria, more refugees for Europe

This is a Morning Joe/MSNBC segment from today reporting on the Trump Family Business Administration's military strike on a Syrian airbase on Thursday, Challenges Ahead After Strike On Syrian Airfield 04/07/2017:

Über-realist Stephen Walt cautions us to not expect a lot from this strike, "The problem is that these attacks are a purely symbolic act devoid of real strategic significance. ... They might deter Assad from further chemical weapons use, but they don’t alter the situation on the ground, don’t make Syrian civilians significantly safer, and don’t move us closer to a solution." (Tom Friedman Is Calling for an Invasion of Syria. Trump Should Run the Other Way. Foreign Policy 04/07/2017)

Also this:

Every escalation of war in the Greater Middle East sends more refugees toward Europe. This article talks about an agreement that Italy is trying to negotiate with tribal leaders in southern Libya to house refugees that would otherwise head to Europe, Flüchtlinge: Europa nimmt Libyens Südgrenze ins Visier Standard 07.04.2017.

Prior to the NATO intervention in Libya - done with the most noble motives, of course! - Libya actually absorbed a lot of immigrants. Now that NATO has helped make Libya a failed state, they are generating their own refugees and are not able to absorb or restrict those coming from the south. I'm amazed how how disconnected the discussions of refugees and xenophobic rightwing populism in Europe are from the wars that generate the current refugee crisis, which turned acute in 2015.

We've gotten to the place where we can't even reign in the domestic arms proliferation problem. And neither party shows any great interest in trying to restrict the international one. Back in the day, John Kenneth Galbraith once suggested that the armaments industry be nationalized to restrict the private profit motive involved. Which might be a good idea if resulted in less military spending and arms trafficking.

I can't even remember the last time I've heard from any of our foreign policy experts or TV Pod Pundits even talking about trying to restrict the flow of arms to violent crisis areas like the Middle East. That at least is not one of those "options on the table."

The bold moderate Maverick McCain, the great moderate statesman who made Sarah Palin a national figure, loved the strike and wants to see more escalation, including creating "safe zones," grounding the Syria Air Force (!), and training Free Syrian Army, aka, the fabled Syrian Moderates, John McCain: President Trump Has Chance To Reboot With Americans Morning Joe/MSNBC 04/07/2017:

The Bold Maverick repeatedly invokes the "dead babies" produced by the gas attack this week, supposedly by the Syrian regime. His and other Republicans' concern about "dead babies" isn't so notable when it's American freedom bombs dealing the death.

Jordan Chariton talks about Hillary Clinton's position from Thursday before Trump's Syria strike occurred, Hillary Clinton Comes Out of Hiding To Warmonger TYT Politics 04/07/2017:

Congressman Adam Schiff in this interview more-or-less supports the attack. But he also cautioned that a regime change operation cannot be accomplished with air power and rockets alone, and argues that regime change should not be the object of US military operations in Syria, Adam Schiff: Donald Trump Should Seek Authorization Rachel Maddow Show/MSNBC 04/06/2017:

Even Schiff, who thinks there should have been a Congressional authorization prior to such an attack, still illustrate how strongly the default position for so many American politicians is to equate "action" with "military attacks."

But the Trump Family Business Administration doesn't seem to be much concerned about the legality of the Syria strike: Ryan Goodman, What Do Top Legal Experts Say About the Syria Strikes? Just Security 04/07/2017.

The Trump/alt-right Old Right Isolationist posture is not a non-interventionist posture, though they may object to some interventions. It's basically a hardcore militarist, nationalist viewpoint that disdain's "entangling alliances" because they might limit American unilateralism.

Here are a few notable Twitter responses:

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