Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Attack in Brussels

So now we have more bombings, this time in Belgium…another country that has opened their borders to "immigrants" fleeing the "ravages of war" in Syria.  Some patterns are appearing but we aren't allowed to notice them.  For instance, all of the "immigrants" appear to be young unaccompanied males in good health and wearing nice clothes.  People fleeing from a war zone don't normally look so comfortable.  They looked emaciated, scared and include women and children with tattered clothing.

The suicided bombers in Belgium did not fly-in recently to commit the attack, they were already in place.  The attack appears to be in retaliation for Belgium's capture of the leader of the Paris attacks, however it is just as likely that that various terrorist cells are just attacking whenever they are ready.

There were two interviews on NPR this evening with experts that took great pains to point out that Belgium has 'lax gun laws" even though none of attacks today used firearms.  One expert though did make a point that is likely to get buried by the press;  the attacks are designed to get Europe and the US to have more ill feelings towards Muslims in order to promote the ISIS/ISIL/Daesh ideology.  

Calls by the White House, Mr. Obama and his sycophants in the media to remain calm and fear no Muslim will fall on deaf ears.  Trump has been riding on the crest of this fear throughout the Republican primary and this latest attack will only further boost his approval ratings (as though he needed any help).

The State Department has already put out travel advisories for Americans traveling to anywhere in Europe.  All of the major European airports will look like military compounds for the next few weeks.  The British who support the UK leaving the European Union will use these attacks as more reason to exit.  After all, it will be argued that it was the liberal immigration policies of the EU (championed by Angela Merkel) is what led to the attack in Brussels and Paris.

Juxtapose the violence in Europe and perceived threat of more violence with the violence that is becoming the norm around Trump political rallies.  The violence as his rallies as being portrayed as a continuum of the racial violence that was so famously highlighted in Ferguson, MO.  We could very likely see a clamp down by the White House on any "hate speech" via some type of martial law on thought.  Mr. Obama's calmness while attending a baseball game in Cuba is disconcerting for unlike others, I do not take that as a sign of his lack of awareness or concern but rather a confidence that matters are falling into place.

Yes indeed, things are moving along quickly in 2016.

Friday, March 4, 2016

North Korea, Russia and the Donald

Donald Trump is not the spawn of Satan that his critics think him to be any more than he is the savior of the country that his ardent supporters believe.  Similarly, President Obama is not the most wonderful President ever as his ardent fans want to believe nor has he run the country into irrelevance than his critics want to believe.  Both men are nothing more than public figures upon which we project our particular views and biases based on our experiences.  We expect them to act and think in a particular way based on our perceptions and therefore it becomes hard to separate truth from fiction.  Hence the amazing amount of emotions and venom being spat across social media as the Presidential nominations drag on.

We need to keep this in mind even when dealing with matters besides Presidents, wannabe Presidents or anyone else in the public eye for that matter.  Case in point, Kim Jong-un announces "North Korean Nukes Need to be Ready" (CNN).  American politicians find it expedient to believe North Korea would be willing to use nuclear weapons since our experience is that we had them and used them against Japan.  We really don't know what North Korea's intent is, we can only superimpose our own biases and experiences against their statements.  On the other hand, since we don't know their intent or how they view others there is a danger that they could use nuclear weapons.

The latter is not as easily supported factually since North Korea has limited resources and has not demonstrated they have to technology necessary to strike US soil.  But the problem if we totally dismiss North Korea, we may miss key indicators of advanced technology.

Russia has huge amount of nuclear weapons and are keeping theirs updated.  What is forgotten is that the former Soviet Union was inspired to develop their nuclear arsenal after watching the US drop the two bombs on Japan.  To date, neither the Soviet Union nor current day Russia have ever used nuclear weapons. Yet out own experiences and biases cause American politicians to think the worst for as over-priced consultants are always quick to remind their clients, "You can't AFFORD to not do this!"  So we automatically assign malice-aforethought to the news of Russia deploying forces to Armenia.  Our experience wants us to believe, and American politicians and media WANT us to believe, that this is a sure sign of Russian aggression.  But if we look from the Russian point of view we see Turkey as the land of trigger-happy descendants of the Ottoman Empire that shot down a Russian fighter jet that was supporting Western efforts to defeat ISIL.

2016 continuing to be a very interesting year!