Mark Safranski joins Pete A Turner with author, think-tanker Dr Mike Mazarr. Mike’s book is called, Leap of Faith Hubris, Negligence, and America’s Greatest Foreign Policy Tragedy Why is the invasion of Iraq viewed as a tragedy? Mike explains to us and draws conclusions to help us better understand by comparing and contrasting past conflicts to Iraq. Mark, brings his experience understanding presidential security council dynamics to push the show to even great depth and uniqueness.
Without giving way any spoilers, Mazarr has penned our time’s version of The Best and the Brightest. It’s a step by step reconstruction using the best evidence available and extensive interviews of principal figures or their aides and colleagues to explain how the Bush administration decided to go down the road to war in Iraq. Like David Halberstam explaining the origins of Vietnam, Mazarr’s task was to explain how so experienced a national security team as the one that served George W. Bush could make so catastrophic a strategic error, the effects of which continue to unfold to this day.
[ by Charles Cameron — behold Abraham Lincoln of the USN sending a signal to Iran, the IRGC, and various Shia militias of dubious reliability ]
Here is a word, maybe even a sentence, in the language of menace:
It looks even more menacing in the full-sized image as I found it, thanks to Julian West, in the Guardian. – hit the link to see it, it’s too large for the Zenpundit format!
Now imagine how menacing that word or sentence becomes when it’s not a photo but a carrier strike group sailing your way..
And now think how menacing that carrier group becomes when John Bolton‘s the one who may be — pardon the pun — calling the shots
Let’s go back to the image up above for a moment, and pray there are no unfortunate accidents, and that the carrier strike group seen here as a sentence in the language of menace doesn’t become anyone’s death sentence..
[ by Charles Cameron — Oxford the memory, Edward Said the music critic, WB Yeats and his Tom O’Roughley, Townes Van Zandt in the song of David Broza.. Barr and Aaliyah — four-page letters, kisses .. plus FaallBack, & Wiz Khalifa on my watch [!!] ]
Minefield, yes —
— but also two sides on one stage, so two virtues in the music of ideas:
polyphony — many voices, and
counterpoint, the juxtaposition, clash and resolution of contrary points of view
For war and peace as symphonic, see Edward Said:
When you think about it, when you think about Jew and Palestinian not separately, but as part of a symphony, there is something magnificently imposing about it. A very rich, also very tragic, also in many ways desperate history of extremes – opposites in the Hegelian sense – that is yet to receive its due. So what you are faced with is a kind of sublime grandeur of a series of tragedies, of losses, of sacrifices, of pain that would take the brain of a Bach to figure out. It would require the imagination of someone like Edmund Burke to fathom.
Lou Armour is a special needs teacher, an introspective man with a walking stick. If you passed him on the street you probably wouldn’t notice anything about him beyond his limp. But 35 years ago he yomped across the Falkland Islands and ran through a minefield under artillery fire on Mount Harriet. His section killed several Argentinians in a bloody battle and Armour found himself attending to a fatally wounded Argentinian soldier who spoke to him in English about visiting Oxford. He watched as the young man died.
That’s I’d say, is a very good start for this post.
As I said to Ali Minai, my view is that of WB Yeats in his poem Tom O’Roughley:
‘Though logic choppers rule the town,
And every man and maid and boy
Has marked a distant object down,
An aimless joy is a pure joy,’
Or so did Tom O’Roughley say
That saw the surges running by,
‘And wisdom is a butterfly
And not a gloomy bird of prey.
‘If little planned is little sinned
But little need the grave distres.
What’s dying but a second wind?
How but in zigzag wantonness
Could trumpeter Michael be so brave?’
Or something of that sort he said,
‘And if my dearest friend were dead
I’d dance a measure on his grave.’
Back to the Mueller probe according to President Trump
:Many, many people were badly hurt by this scam, but more importantly, our country was hurt. Our country was hurt. And they are on artificial respirators right now. They are getting mouth-to-mouth resuscitation.
— and back to “little pencil-neck Adam Schiff” aka “Adam Schitt”:
He’s got the smallest, thinnest neck I’ve ever seen. He is not a long-ball hitter, but I saw him today, ‘Well we don’t really know, there still could have been some Russia collusion.’
Sick, sick.. these are sick people and there has to be accountability because it is all lies and they know it’s lies ..
That’s an unexpected and welcome follow-up ..
And so to Trump:
Wildcard*****, a nice, slightly paradoxical example..
I’m watching Hanna (Amazon), starring the skilled and lovely Esme Creed-Miles:
Life, she is full of variety, no?
elshi & Ruhle:
Again, trump, trump, trump..
Rep Jamie Raskin, his way with words:
Attorney General Barr writes letters like Agatha Christie novels, there are more and more mysteries built into each one ..
[Impeachment] it’s the people’s defense against a president who’s acting like a king ..
The Beat, Ari Melber:
First, a stream of chyrons..
I’m dropping this four-page letter and enclosing it with a kiss..
Aside: the things we learn!!
I think he’s part of the team..
Let me use a basketball analogy if you don’t mind.. You know how, at the end of a game when one team thinks it’s ahead and they spread the floor and start tossing the ball around to keep from getting fouled to stop the clock, that’s my interpretation [of Barr’s actions] here..
.. dozens of years of Yale Law School education, and we end at the freak-show tent ..
Then there’s a quote from Obama’s Selma Bridge speech:
We are the people Langston Hughes wrote of who “build our temples for tomorrow, strong as we know how.” We are the people Emerson wrote of, “who for truth and honor’s sake stand fast and suffer long;” who are “never tired, so long as we can see far enough.”
That’s what America is. Not stock photos or airbrushed history, or feeble attempts to define some of us as more American than others.
Fallback, which I generally don’t like too much, but here —
— hunting and shooting a sleeping lion —
If you’re hunting to eat, that’s one thing ..
You want to impress me — go fight that lion with your bare hands, knuckles, teeth — and then come back and talk to me..
[ by Charles Cameron — nuke is about as fierce a military metaphor as you can use, though bringing on Armageddon may surpass it, while being grilled can’t be nice, eh, Kirstjen Nielsen? — but for unabashed cliché wizardry in the dark arts is hard to beat. And much more ]
All in With Chris Hayes 3/6/2019:
It’s very kind of clock and dagger and ham handed, but just ham handed enough to be potentially a Rudi Giuliani signature move..
Bolton is a sovereigntist,” John Yoo told me. “He thinks the U.S. should not be bound by international organizations, and we should not be ceding our authority to the United Nations or NAFTA.” After the Cold War, “the U.S. tied itself down with multilateral institutions, primarily run by Europeans, to constrain our freedom of action—to tie down Gulliver.” Every time the United States joins an alliance, or consents to arbitration on equal terms with, say, Latvia or Guinea, one more rope is lashed over Gulliver’s limbs.
From the moment Donald Trump took office, California has been ground zero for the resistance against him and his administration, in terms of both grassroots citizen activism and legal and administrative action by its Democratic-dominated state government. But since the inauguration of Governor Gavin Newsom in January, the Golden State has often seemed to be in a state of total war with the White House.
At the same time, California’s once-mighty Republican Party—which gave the nation Earl Warren, Richard Nixon, and Ronald Reagan—is at war with itself, and weaker than it’s been in decades. The GOP’s new state-Senate leader was once quoted as suggesting that California’s epic drought was divine punishment for abortion, and last weekend the party elected its first female and first Latina state chair, only after a bitter internecine fight that left its conservative wing enraged.
ground zero, the resistance, a state of total war, at war with itself, divine punishment for abortion, a bitter internecine fight..
The origin of the app has some obvious parallels to Cultural Revolution-era drives to study Mao Zedong’s Little Red Book. For example, the first two characters of the app’s logo are written in Mao’s calligraphic style. Mao once encouraged youths to study hard and make progress every day, while Xi has highlighted several times the importance of study in a digital era of media.
n Election Day, 2018, residents of Nogales, Arizona, began to notice a single row of coiled razor wire growing across the top of the city’s border wall. The barrier has been a stark feature of the town’s urban landscape for more than twenty years, rolling up and over hilltops as it cleaves the American town from its larger, Mexican counterpart. But, in the weeks and months that followed, additional coils were gradually installed along the length of the fence by active-duty troops sent to the border by President Trump, giving residents the sense that they were living inside an occupied city. By February, concertina wire covered the wall from top to bottom, and the Nogales City Council passed a unanimous resolution calling for its removal. Such wire has only one purpose, the resolution declared—to harm or to kill. It is something “only found in a war, prison, or battle setting.”
Some final notes:
Ali Velshi 3/7/2019:
We’re going to see sort of what he does when he’s finally looking at years and years in prison, is he then kind of sober up, and decide well maybe I should be cooperating with these people after all, or does he just at this point go down for the count, and take whatever secrets he has with him..
I would make it clear there are more chips in the bag of the Special Prosecutor
As a former prosecutor, I think you’re seeing a white collar, white-washing sentence here [ .. ]
We learned a lot about the Trump code, that people like Paul Manafort and others know the code, that Donald Trump speaks to them in the code that they’re supposed to talk to him. And when the lawyers saying words that mimic or parrot what Donald Trump is saying, it’s as if the fix is in, and Paul Manafort knows if he just keeps quiet, a pardon is coming his way [ .. ]
I saw someone [DJT] who games the system ..
That was supposed to be the start of a whole new Paul Manafort, right? Coming clean, pleading guilty, admitting guilt on the charges on which they didn’t retry him, right? At that moment, when he decided to plead and become a cooperator, that was him joining Team USA .. joining Team USA, joining the prosecutors, admitting his guilt .. the cooperation aspect of Paul Manafort’s case is another fascinating curve-ball..
I took a guided tour of some of the scenes of the Troubles. The tour was led by a former IRA paramilitary, now working with an association of former prisoners partially subsidized by EU funds. A few hundred meters to the north, former Loyalist paramilitaries lead tours on their side of the defensive barrier that still separates predominantly Catholic from predominantly Protestant neighborhoods. The EU helps underwrite those tours, too.
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