John Bolton

John Bolton

First Step to Peace with North Korea. Americans FREED!

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Whose Side Are They On? Dems and Media Attack Trump For Calling MS-13 Gang Members Animals

If anything, "animals" is a tame description for these monsters. And once again, Dems take their side over that of law abiding citizens!

If you listen to Democrats illegal immigrants are all "dreamers" seeking a better life. The truth is not so simple. Large numbers of illegal aliens are not refugees from poverty and violence, they are members of one of the most vicious and bloodthirsty gangs on the planet.  Wouldn't you think the Democrats who condemn members of the National Rifle Association because they support the right of law abiding citizens to carry firearms would be doubly concerned with criminals who commit horrific acts of violence and murder innocent Americans?

MS-13 gang bangers routinely use machetes to chop their victims into tiny bits of blood, tissue and bone. Their victims are usually other immigrants and young people. Boys and girls.  The motto of the gang is “Murder, rape, control." These are the people Democrats and their media allies are defending.

One particularly brutal crime scene on Long Island New York four teens who "disrespected" MS-13 were hacked to death in the most vile way imaginable.

Dems Want No Justice for These "Dreamers?"

Teens hacked to pieces by MS-13 in June 2017.
At the crime scene police described one of the victims:
Hacked with a machete, his face had no nose, no lips, no cheeks; it was just a mass of bloody tissue and broken bones.
This horrific crime was not an isolated incident. In a park near Washington DC last year  MS-13 monsters stabbed a man 100 times, decapitated him and cut out his heart. It's happening all over the country.

Trump Calls Out Evil, Media Attacks Trump

On Wednesday President Trump held a meeting with California citizens and law enforcement to discuss California's sanctuary state policy.  A video is available of the event and a transcript. Here is an excerpt of what Trump said:
TRUMP: California’s law provides safe harbor to some of the most vicious and violent offenders on Earth, like MS-13 gang members putting innocent men, women, and children at the mercy of these sadistic criminals. But we’re moving them out of this country by the thousands. MS-13, we’re grabbing them by the thousands and we’re getting them out, Kevin.
We all remember the tragic case of Marilyn Farris who was murdered by an illegal immigrant who had been arrested six times prior to breaking into Marilyn’s home, raping her and savagely beating her to death with a hammer.
That's the background for the discussion. At the roundtable Fresno County Sheriff Margaret Mims complained to Trump about how difficult it was under California law to deport MS-13 gang members. Trump responded:
SHERIFF MIMS: Thank you. There could be an MS-13 member I know about — if they don’t reach a certain threshold, I cannot tell ICE about it.

THE PRESIDENT: We have people coming into the country, or trying to come in — and we’re stopping a lot of them — but we’re taking people out of the country. You wouldn’t believe how bad these people are. These aren’t people. These are animals. And we’re taking them out of the country at a level and at a rate that’s never happened before. And because of the weak laws, they come in fast, we get them, we release them, we get them again, we bring them out. It’s crazy.
For referring to these monsters as "animals" the same New York Times and Washington Post that have written extensively about the brutality of this gang (1,2) attacked Trump.
The same quote, clearly out of context was cited by a number of major network and print media. Politico was one of the few sites that bothered to correct the record with a story titled "Trump: ‘Animals’ comment referred to MS-13 gang members."

And you wonder why Trump calls the left media fake news?

Pelosi Thinks MS-13 Killers Have "Divinity" and "Dignity"

Knowing full well exactly what Trump said and intended didn't stop House Democrat Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) from saying on Thursday:
PELOSI: "When the president of the United States says about undocumented immigrants, ‘These aren't people; these are animals,' you have to wonder: does he not believe in the spark of divinity, the dignity and worth of every person?"
Pelosi went on to say that Trump's statement was a "manifestation of why their policies are so inhumane." No word from Pelosi about the young men and women who lives have been taken and whose bodies had to be scooped from the ground with shovels so their family could bury what's left.

What Does American Left Want?  More Rape? More Murder?

Now you know why Israel has a wall. House MS-13 gangs in this idiot's neigborhood!
Once again, the American left and their media mouthpieces take the side of genuine evil over that of the innocent American citizens and immigrants. The campaign ad for the fall election practically writes itself. Americans have a real choice this November. Choose stupidity and evil or common sense!

Thursday, May 10, 2018

Trump Greeets Freed American Prisoners After North Korea Release

Another sign of the big thaw made possible by the application of Peace Through Strength. Works every time it's tried!

Smiles and hugs at Andrews Air Force Base near Washington, DC in the early hours of Thursday morning as three Americans held prisoner in North Korea arrived back in the United States to be greeted by President Trump and First Lady Melania along with Vice President Pence and his wife Karen.

Unlike Obama's ill fated Iran deal, $150 billion in cash wasn't required to seal the release of the three Americans, all of Korean ancestry.

At Joint Base Andrews Trump welcomed home the three Americans:
THE PRESIDENT: This is a great honor. Hopefully everything is going to work out at the highest level. We want to thank Kim Jong-un, who really was excellent to these three incredible people. They are really three incredible people. And the fact that we were able to get them out so soon was really a tribute to a lot of things, including a certain process that’s taking place right now. And that process is very important.
This release stands in marked contrast to that of Otto Warmbier, an American student taken prisoner in North Korea. He was tortured. His teeth were pulled out and put back in the wrong sockets among other horrors inflicted on the 22 year old.  He was released by the North Koreans in June 2017 in a comatose state and died soon after. His parents had been told by the Obama Administration not to raise the issue of their son's detention.  It took an intervention by President Trump to obtain Otto's release.

A different homecoming for Otto Warmbier who died shortly after his release from North Korea.  Obama Administration officials ignored his plight.
Otto was on the mind of President Trump as he greeted the plane with freed prisoners. At Joint Base Andrews Trump added:
TRUMP: And I must tell you, I want to pay my warmest respects to the parents of Otto Warmbier, who was a great young man who really suffered. And his parents have become friends of ours. They are spectacular people. And I just want to pay my respects. I actually called them the other day, and Mike called them, also — Mike Pence. And they are really incredible people.
No more leading from behind or strategic patience and it's already paying results!

Trump announces Summit Date/Place
Movement and progress on all fronts. When will the Trump haters who said he would start a nuclear war admit they were wrong?

Wednesday, May 02, 2018

Former Trump Campaign Staffer Tells Senate Dems: 'God damn you to hell!' The Hidden Personal Cost of the Trump Witch Hunt

When will Republicans learn to fight fire with fire?
Three heads of the deep state snake. Comey, Clapper and Brennan!
Here's how they did it. The Hillary campaign paid P.R. firm Fusion GPS $12 million through a third party to hide the expenditure from campaign reporting. Fusion hired British ex-spy Christoper Steele who in turn paid Russians to concoct dirt on Trump.  None of which was verified or proven.  Next, the dossier gets leaked through Clinton State Department aides and ends up on the desks of the former FBI Director Comey and former Director of National Intelligence Clapper and former CIA Director Brennan.  Comey agrees to brief President-Elect Trump on the dossier then Clapper leaks that news to CNN.

For their pains, Comey makes millions on a silly book and Clapper gets a paid gig at CNN. Former CIA Director Brennan gets a paid gig at MSNBC.  Payoffs for fake news? CNN wins a prestigious award journalism award for their part in the fake news scandal.

News of the fake dossier is then used to justify hiring of a Special Prosecutor triggering the ongoing circus. Caught in the net are a bunch of small fish who would never have been placed in legal jeopardy had the Democrat deep state not succeeded in engineering this farce.  Most are not guilty of anything but forced nonetheless to hire expensive lawyers and appear before Senate and House investigating committees and answer questions from the Special Prosecutor.

Among the little fish is Michael Caputo. Caputo has never been accused of any crime. He testified Tuesday before the Senate Intelligence Committee and is forced to sell his house and move away from family to make money to pay legal bills.  Unlike most people hauled before one of the Dem's Star Chamber hearings Caputo didn't hold back.

Caputo's statement via the Daily Mail:
'In 2009, my wife and I moved to my hometown of East Aurora, New York to have a family. Making far less money back home, we had a far better quality of life. That is, until the Trump-Russia narrative took off. Today, I can’t possibly pay the attendant legal costs and live near my aging father, raising my kids where I grew up.

'Your investigation and others into the allegations of Trump campaign collusion with Russia are costing my family a great deal of money – more than $125,000 - and making a visceral impact on my children.

'Now I must to move back to Washington, New York City, Miami or elsewhere, just so I can make enough money to pay off these legal bills. And I know I have you to thank for that.

'Here’s how I know: how many of you know Daniel Jones, former Senate Intelligence staffer for Senator Dianne Feinstein? Great guy, right? Most of you worked with him. One of you probably just talked to him this morning.

'Of course, very few of us in flyover country knew Daniel until recently. Now we know that he quit his job with your Senate committee not long ago to raise $50 million from ten rich Democrats to finance more work on the FusionGPS Russian dossier. The one the FBI used to get a FISA warrant and intimidate President Donald Trump, without anyone admitting -- until months after it was deployed -- that it was paid for by Hillary Clinton.

'In fact, good old Dan has been raising and spending millions to confirm the unconfirmable – and, of course, to keep all his old intel colleagues up-to-speed on what FusionGPS and British and Russian spies have found. Got to keep that Russia story in the news.

'Of course Dan’s in touch with you guys. We know from the news that he’s been briefing Senator Mark Warner, vice chairman of this committee. Which one of you works for Senator Warner? Please give Danny my best.

'I saw some of his handiwork just last month. Remember this lede paragraph, from McClatchy on April 13?

'The Justice Department special counsel has evidence that Donald Trump’s personal lawyer and confidant, Michael Cohen, secretly made a late-summer trip to Prague during the 2016 presidential campaign, according to two sources familiar with the matter.

'That’s your pal Dan, isn’t it? He came up with some kind of hollow proof that Michael Cohen was in Prague meeting with Russians when he wasn’t. He tried to sell that to reporters, and they didn’t buy it because it doesn’t check out. So, to get a reporter to write up his line of bull, he gave the documents to the Office of Special Counsel.

'We know that’s likely, because he’s told people he’s briefing investigators.

'So, technically, the special counsel’s office has evidence. Your pal Dan gave them more of the Democrats’ dossier, funded by more Democrats, provided again by Russian and British spies. Information no reporter would write up, but now there’s an angle: the Special Counsel has it. Now it’s a story.

'It’s a clever but effective ruse. That’s a story, just like when reporter Michael Isikoff of Yahoo News wrote this gem on September 16, 2016:

'“…U.S. officials have since received intelligence reports that during that same three-day trip, Page met with Igor Sechin, a longtime Putin associate … a well-placed Western intelligence source tells Yahoo News. That meeting, if confirmed, is viewed as especially problematic by U.S. officials…”

'Dozens of stories were written from the Isikoff piece, doing real damage to the Trump campaign. Of course, now we know Isikoff’s reference to “intelligence reports” was just him renaming a dossier funded by Democrats and dug up by his longtime pal Glenn Simpson and some foreign spies. Once Simpson gave his Clinton campaign opposition research to the feds, it was news.

'This was especially true after Isikoff intentionally labeled the campaign materials as intelligence – just like McClatchy called Dan’s information “evidence.”

'But who is McClatchy’s second source? It couldn’t be Dan; he was the first source. It couldn’t be Simpson; he works for Dan. It can’t be the Mueller investigation; they kicked the McClatchy story to the curb with aplomb. So who could it be – perhaps one of his former Senate Intelligence colleagues? I mean, you’re all in this together. You’re the swamp.

'What America needs is an investigation of the investigators. I want to know who is paying for the spies’ work and coordinating this attack on President Donald Trump? I want to know who Dan Jones is talking to across the investigations – from the FBI, to the Southern District of New York, to the OSC, to the Department of Justice, to Congress.

'Forget about all the death threats against my family. I want to know who cost us so much money, who crushed our kids, who forced us out of our home, all because you lost an election.

'I want to know because God Damn you to Hell.'
Caputo points out that Dan Jones, former committee staff, is now spearheading a new $50 million effort to repeat the Steele dossier fracas with a new pack of lies designed to ensnare innocent people in legal troubles and derail the Trump presidency.

While Jones and his cohorts continue to cash in while innocent people have their lives and reputations ruined fair minded people might wonder when these deep  state Dems will face the same level of scrutiny and legal jeopardy they routinely inflict on others? Until that happens we can expect the circus to continue!

Tuesday, May 01, 2018

Why Are "Refugees" from Oppression Claiming Asylum in U.S. While Waving Honduran Flags?

And if they are really fleeing oppression and violence, why didn't they seek asylum in Mexico?

It's always puzzled me why migrants demanding legal status in the United States wave flags from the countries they left behind at protests. But at least, in those cases they were people who were already on U.S. soil.

Now we have a "caravan" of mostly Honduran migrants who have fled Honduras claiming the country was violent and oppressive and show up at the U.S. border demanding to be let in. First, if they had a legitimate claim to asylum Mexico would admit them. But apparently that's not good enough. They traveled the length of Mexico and are now huddled on the other side of the U.S. border demanding to be admitted. Wouldn't you think that if they were so desperate to live in the United States they might wave Old Glory and not the Honduran flag representing the country they claim is so oppressive?

Migrants sitting on top of the U.S. southern border fence waving the Honduran flag.

A Soros funded group called Peoples Without Borders has organized these caravans and encouraged what they call "desperate" people to make the dangerous journey. Preying on the poverty of Hondurans might make great propaganda but it takes away resources from others who may have a more legitimate claim to seek asylum. It also encourages another wave of illegal immigration creating more problems with large numbers of illiterate, unskilled persons who do not speak English.

While so-called refugees were waving the Honduran flag on the Mexican side of the border, left wing protesters on the American side also showed up with the Honduran flag.  But look also at the printed protest sign for another hint at who is sponsoring this mass attempt to corrupt U.S. immigration laws:

Printed sign paid for by ANSWER Coalition. Funded by communists and George Soros.
Are the Russians also funding this unrest?
U.S. immigration law defended by Democrats is so weak that anyone who touches U.S. soil can claim asylum and will be released into the country.  Nearly all do not show up for court dates to adjudicate their claim.  In essence these arrivals become a new underclass of illegal aliens that Democrats will then exploit. And they are so brazen about it they wave Honduran, not U.S. flags!

Monday, April 30, 2018

South Korean President Says Trump Should Get Nobel Peace Prize

He refused to take credit for himself but suggests progress is all due to Trump!

From USA Today:
President Trump should receive the Nobel Peace Prize if anyone gets the award for the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, South Korean President Moon Jae-in said Monday.

"President Trump should win the Nobel Peace Prize. All we need is to bring peace," Moon said, according to the Blue House, Seoul's equivalent of the White House.

Moon made the comment after reading a message from Lee Hee-ho, the widow of late South Korean president Kim Dae-jung, congratulating Moon for Friday's historic summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, The Korea Timesreported.

Lee's note suggested that Moon should be awarded the prestigious prize, but Moon said Trump deserves the honor, according to the Blue House.
Moon, has consistently praised Trump for his efforts. In January, Mr Moon said Mr Trump "deserves big credit for bringing about the inter-Korean talks. It could be a resulting work of the US-led sanctions and pressure".

Unlike Obama, who was awarded the prize after only a few weeks in office, if peace comes to Korea, Trump will have EARNED the prize!

Saturday, April 28, 2018

Korean Summit: One Small Step for Kim. One Giant Leap for Peace?

And NONE of it would have happened without Trump!

Growing up I never thought I would see the Berlin Wall come down, let alone the collapse of the Soviet Union and freedom for Eastern Europe.  But President Reagan had a vision of peace and with the persistent help of allies like Britain's Margaret Thatcher and Pope John Paul II the reality we see today became possible.  Are we witnessing another great moment in history today?

I doubted whether this was possible either:

South Korean President Moon Jae-in and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un meet in the truce village of Panmunjom inside the demilitarized zone separating the two Koreas, South Korea, April 27, 2018. Korea Summit Press Pool/Pool via Reuters. Photo gallery at the Daily Caller. Step by step of the visit with photos and quote at Channel NewsAsia.

One step across a line separating one nation divided by war and the enmity of decades and suddenly peace seems possible. At their meeting the two leaders signed a joint statement titled the "Panmunjeom Declaration for Peace, Prosperity and Unification of the Korean Peninsula." The full text is here. The declaration begins:
The two leaders solemnly declared before the 80 million Korean people and the whole world that there will be no more war on the Korean Peninsula and thus a new era of peace has begun.

The two leaders, sharing the firm commitment to bring a swift end to the Cold War relic of longstanding division and confrontation, to boldly approach a new era of national reconciliation, peace and prosperity, and to improve and cultivate inter-Korean relations in a more active manner, declared at this historic site of Panmunjeom.
Three main points follow along with a pledge for continued direct communications and meetings. When North Korean leader Kim signed the guestbook at the South Korean "Peace House" he wrote: ""A new history starts now. An age of peace, from the starting point of history."

Before we start signing Kumbaya around the campfire it's important to remember that everything about North Korea must be taken with a grain of salt. Bruce Klingner at the Heritage Foundation and CIA veteran with direct experience in Korean affairs tweets:
With nuclear weapons being the only claim to fame for North Korea many are skeptical that they can or will give up those weapons and actually move to a complete "denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula" as promised. Kim made several statements suggesting this time would be different. “I came here to put an end to the history of confrontation,” said the North Korean leader. Kim also addressed past failures:
KIM: As the expectations are high, so is the skepticism. In the past, we had reached big agreements, but they were not implemented for more than 10 years. There are people who are skeptical that the results of today’s meeting will be properly implemented.
Today, we will make sure that the agreement we have reached, which the people of the Korean Peninsula and the world are watching, doesn’t repeat the unfortunate history of unfulfilled promises.
As the old saying goes, the proof is in the pudding. Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe reacted: "I strongly ... hope that North Korea will take concrete actions. I will keep close eyes on North Korea's actions from now."

High Stakes for Trump

President Trump has been in close contact with South Korean and Japanese allies throughout this process. He recently met with Japan's Abe at Mar-a-Lago, his Florida White House. He's also been praised by South Korea's President Moon for fostering today's developments. But now, expectations have been raised especially in light of an even more unprecedented meeting between Kim and Trump.

Trump commented on the developments at a meeting with visiting German Chancellor Angela Merkel at the White House on Friday:

Trump: "We're not going to be played."

With National Security Advisor John Bolton and newly confirmed Secretary of State Mike Pompeo onboard Trump has the kind of strong and level headed team to assure progress. While some observers fret Trump may not realize what he's walking into others in the know suggest that there is likely to be solid progress behind the scenes that may explain Trump's cautious optimism. However,  Trump has made it clear from the beginning of discussions on a Trump-Kim summit that he's prepared to walk away if negotiations don't bear fruit. Unlike past leaders who Trump said were "played like a fiddle." Right there, that kind of frank talk is encouraging. Stay tuned!

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

France and U.S. Forge New 'Special Relationship' with State Visit Triumph

Reagan had Margaret Thatcher, Trump has Macron!

When Winston Churchill left office in 1955 he warned his colleagues to "never be separated from the Americans." For decades the "special relationship" between the United Kingdom and what Churchill called "the Great Republic" was a hallmark of diplomacy between great powers. Later in the 20th Century, the ideological soul match between UK Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher and President Ronald Reagan were a further demonstration of that bond. But now, Britain has been cast into the shade by the personal diplomatic tour de force of French President Emmanuel Macron during his state visit to Washington, DC. The first state visit of the Trump era.

Macron and Trump displayed an unmistakable 'relation spéciale' on a personal level rarely seen among world leaders. Throughout the visit there were reminders that France was America's first ally and the long history our two nations have shared. Macron even took a slight dig at the British by pointing out in his toast at the state dinner how wonderful it was to be in the White House calling it a "legendary place" and reminding his host "This White House full of history that the British burned down in 1815." The French President has made it clear he does not share the British reticence about embracing Trump and Macron clearly relished the role.

Macron explains the foundation for his unusual friendship with Trump:
“We have a very special relationship because both of us are probably the maverick of the systems on both sides,” Macron said. “I think President Trump’s election was unexpected in your country and probably my election was unexpected in my country. And we are not part of the classical political system.”
Throughout the visit those words "special relationship" came up again and again.

A state visit brings a flurry of words and images. I've selected a few to share. On the first day of the visit the leaders and their spouses planted a tree, a gift from President Macron, on the White House lawn. The sapling came from Belleau Wood, the site of a battle in World War I in which more than 9,000 American soldiers died.

Next it was off for dinner at Mount Vernon, home of George Washington, aboard Marine One.

On Tuesday, the official welcome ceremony at the White House is a time for pageantry and speeches. Behind the scenes, meetings are taking place to address key issues.


The warmth between the two men was obvious as they left the White House balcony at the end of the welcome ceremony and later as they went to the Oval Office.

At their joint press conference:

TRUMP: "I like him a lot."
Their personal affection was on display in this joking moment in the Oval Office when Trump pretended to remove dandruff from Macron's suit:

TRUMP: We do have a very special relationship.... he's perfect!
The Washington Post put together a video montage. Macron is one handsy guy. But in a good way!

State Dinner

After the welcome ceremony the highlight of the visit is a state dinner. Trump choose to dispense with Obama's tent that was erected on the lawn so Barack and Michelle could party with Hollywood celebrities and choose the more intimate, formal and historic setting of the White House state dining room. But first, another welcome and more photos:

First Lady Melania Trump selected the Clinton china

Back to the bromance with the Toasts (text.)

The First Lady Competition

While Emmanuel and Donald were busy with meetings, First Lady Melania took France's First Lady Brigitte Macron to the National Gallery. Fashions of the two were compared, two women in white, but a writer at the Daily Mail paid special attention to the footwear.

Macron Addresses Joint Session of Congress

House Speaker Paul Ryan invited President Macron to address a joint meeting of both the House and Senate. It's a rare honor and as Ryan points out “The first foreign leader to address Congress was Marquis de Lafayette, the French general whose heroism during the Revolutionary War earned him honorary American citizenship."

In Macron's speech he didn't shy away from expressing his differences with Trump on issues like climate change or trade. And once more, he alluded to the "very special relationship."

The trip was a triumph for Macron and for Trump. Both affirmed the historic alliance of France and the United States while demonstrating warmth on a personal level that can only lead to better solutions to the challenges we face together.

Sunday, April 22, 2018

Trump's Best Shot at REAL Peace with North Korea is to Follow Reagan's Example

"Peace through strength" and "trust but verify" work every time they are tried!

You can't go wrong when Ronnie leads the way!
In 1983 President Reagan countered the left's nuclear freeze proposals by calling out the Soviet Union as an "evil empire." He delivered that speech on March 8, 1983 at a convention of the National Association of Evangelicals in Orlando, Florida [speech text]. Establishment appeasers and left wing useful idiots went bonkers insisting that such harsh language is not the road to peace but to war. A few weeks later on March 22 Reagan gave an Oval Office address to the nation [speech text] announcing his Strategic Defense Initiative (SDI) with the purpose of realigning our national defense strategy away from the policy of mutual assured destruction (MAD) to one where incoming missiles could be shot down. Again, the Reagan haters went wild denouncing this as "Star Wars" starting an arms race in space that could only lead to war.

Three years later in 1986 President Reagan met the USSR's General Secretary Mikhail Gorbachev for a summit in Reykjavík, Iceland but walked away from a stunning deal to rid the world of nuclear weapons if only the U.S. would give up it's SDI program. Reagan refused. Again, establishment appeasers and the left went bonkers. However, a year later Gorbachev removed his objections to SDI and signed the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty which relieved tensions in Europe and led to broader agreements on strategic nuclear weapons.

With the hindsight of 35 years of history we can see that Reagan had a vision of a better world. He stuck to that vision and wasn't afraid what the naysayers and appears had to say. He understood that effective arms control required first that the U.S. negotiate from a position of strength. "Peace through strength" was the phrase Reagan, and earlier Winston Churchill and others had used. Another key element to Reagan's negotiating strategy was the Russian phrase "dovorey no provorey," trust but verify. At the INF Treaty singing in 1987 Gorbachev joked "you repeat that at every meeting." Reagan responded "I like it" as he went on to describe how important verification and inspection provisions were to actually achieving real arms control success.

North Korea Peace Trump's Reagan Moment?

There's been a lot of positive noise about the situation with North Korea in the past few weeks. If we apply Reagan's lessons it may provide the best opportunity to actually move the dial closer to peace between North and South Korea and the United States and our allies.

The flurry of news in the past week alone has been stunning. Reports coming mainly from South Korea that the North is ready to engage in talks to actually end the war that was suspended but not ended by the armistice:
(NEWSER) – North Korea wants "complete denuclearization" of the Korean peninsula and is willing to drop its key demand that American troops fully withdraw from South Korea, according to Seoul. South Korean president Moon Jae-in, who is scheduled to meet North Korean leader Kim Jong Un on April 27, said Thursday that Pyongyang had expressed a will for denuclearization and had not attached any conditions that the US would consider unacceptable, including a troop pullout, the Guardian reports. "All they are expressing is the end of hostile policies against North Korea, followed by a guarantee of security," he said. North Korea has not confirmed that it has dropped the demand for the withdrawal of US troops.

Moon said his summit with Kim could be a step toward a formal end to the Korean War and aid for the North's economy if it gets rid of its nuclear weapons program, though he cautioned that no progress would be made separate from the upcoming US-North Korea summit. "First, the South-North Korean summit must make a good beginning, and the dialogue between the two Koreas likely must continue after we see the results of the North Korea-United States summit," he said, per Reuters. The April 27 meeting will be only the third meeting of Korean leaders since 1953. On Friday, the first-ever telephone hotline between the leaders was installed and tested in preparation for the summit, the AP reports.
As with any proposal from North Korea it has to be taken with a huge grain of salt. Both President's Clinton and Obama have been snookered by North Korean promises in which the U.S. gave aide and the North Koreans continued with their nuclear and missile development after a short break. Will things be any different this time? President Trump realizes the dilemma. The following statement is from April 18, after a meeting with Japanese Prime Minister Abe at Trump's Mar-a-Lago resort:
TRUMP: We will not repeat the mistakes of previous administrations. Our campaign of maximum pressure will continue until North Korea denuclearizes. We have great respect for many aspects of what they’re doing, but we have to get it together. We have to end nuclear weapons, ideally in all parts of the world. That would be a goal for all of us, to hope for and to cherish.

As I’ve said before, there is a bright path available to North Korea when it achieves denuclearization in a complete and verifiable, and irreversible way. It will be a great day for them. It will be great day for the world.
The Trump haters, some of whom insisted he was unfit for office when he previously talked tough on North Korea still aren't happy. Insisting Trump will be conned into an agreement and nothing will change. Of course some who now criticize Trump's peace prospects for North Korea were cheerleaders for Obama's deeply flawed deal with Iran that gave the mad mullahs $150 billion to fund new terrorism up front with no leverage later.

Channeling his inner Reagan Trump has said that he is prepared to walk away from the upcoming summit with North Korea's Kim Jong Un. Trump told Japan's Abe: "If the meeting, when I'm there, is not fruitful, I will respectfully leave the meeting and continue what we're doing." Continuing pressure on North Korea with our allies united in the effort is the best path to peace. Trump knows it. The question is, do the North Koreans? We may have some insight on that after the North-South summit at the Peace House on Friday, April 27. Stay tuned!

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Mother of a Dynasty: Barbara Bush Dead at 92

A woman of undoubtable grace, class, humility and humor!
June 8, 1925 – April 17, 2018 
Photographed at the White House with dog Millie c. 1990
More photos at George H.W. Bush Library

The last time I saw Barbara Bush was on the White House lawn November 4, 1992.  She had just returned with her husband George and Vice President Dan Quayle and his wife Marilyn the day after their defeat in the presidential election.  The presidential limo parked at the southern base of the large lawn nearer the Washington Monument.  Both couples were forced to run a gauntlet of cheering supporters all the way up to the House and eventually giving a wave from the balcony.  All of them, including Barbara Bush looked totally exhausted.

The George H.W. Bush Library has put together a special web site for remembering Barbara Bush. Go there for the official obituary as well as other biographical resources. I'll just share a few photo reflections here.

Above all, more than being First Lady, Barbara Bush prided herself on being a mother and wife to the over of her life, husband George.
Barbara Bush: "At the end of your life, you will never regret not having passed one more test, winning one more verdict, or not closing one more deal. You will regret time not spent with a husband, a child, a friend or a parent." Addressing Wellesley College graduating class June 1,1990. More notable quotes here.
Family First 
The Bush family in Kennebunkport, Maine August 24, 1986
Kennebunkport with Millie in 2004.

George W. Bush and Laura Bush at their wedding in Texas on November 5, 1977, with George H.W. Bush and Barbara Bush.
Duty Follows

Second only to duty to the family came duty to the country.  Only the second woman in U.S. history who was both the wife and mother of a U.S. President (Abigail Adams being the first). She was fixture of Washington life for a generation. As wife of a Vice President followed by First Lady then grande dame of the growing Bush clan. My apologies to those too young to remember.

Photos do not do her sincere humanity justice:

Barbara Bush watches as husband George H.W. takes the oath of office January 20, 1989. 
(I was there)
Walking the Reagan's to Marine One helicopter as they leave Inaugural ceremony 1988.

President and Mrs. Bush walk down Pennsylvania Avenue during
the Inaugural Parade January 20, 1989

A tense night in Austin Texas with then Governor George W. Bush
on election night November 7, 2000. Result of the election was contested by Al Gore.
Greeting the World

Welcoming Queen Elizabeth II and her husband Prince Phillip for a State Visit to the
White House May 14, 1991
Former First Lady Barbara Bush shares the center spot with Queen Elizabeth II at the
British Ambassador's residence in Washington, DC on May 8, 2007.
Yes, she might Princess Diana too (1,2).

Barbara Bush was a charmer. Here she is kissing the hand of Denis Thatcher, spouse of UK Prime Minster Margaret Thatcher.

President Bush and First Lady Barbara Bush at Chequers with Prime Minster
Margaret and Denis Thatcher.
She also had to put up with a lot of unsavory characters:

Anyone want to caption this?
Welcoming Hillary Clinton to the White House November 19,1992
weeks after losing the election to Bill Clinton.

Good bye Barbara Bush!

Saturday, April 14, 2018

Syria Strike: Consequence of Obama's Vanity and Incompetence in World Affairs

Obama played into Putin's hands on several occasions. In Syria, the deaths of innocent men, women and children were the result!

The American left insists that somehow it's inappropriate to discuss what Obama did, or did not do, as President. "He's out of office" they howl as if none of what he did had any bearing on where we are today.  Sorry but history does not permit such denial. If we don't know where we have been, how do we stop from making the same mistake?

Syria's use of chemical weapons against it's own people came into clear focus during Obama's re-election campaign on August 20, 2012. He was trying to sound tough when he declared:
OBAMA: We have been very clear to the Assad regime, but also to other players on the ground, that a red line for us is we start seeing a whole bunch of chemical weapons moving around or being utilized. That would change my calculus. That would change my equation.

A year later on September 4 2013 when it was obvious that Syria had continued to use chemical weapons Obama, realizing he could not get congressional approval to strike Syria, denied he had declared the red line. He insisted instead that "I didn't set a red line. The world set a red line." Scrambling to recover from the fallout of that shambolic whopper Obama dispatched Secretary of State Kerry to the 5 star Intercontinental Hotel in Geneva, Switzerland to meet with Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov.

After days of fruitless discussion Kerry and Lavrov met poolside and Lavrov relented to an agreement (text) that had more holes in it than the Swiss cheese served at dinner. But all that was overlooked in the moment where Kerry put on his best Neville Chamberlain face and assured the world he had secured his version of "peace for our time." Watch out Poland!

The agreement did allow Obama to save face but at the expense of what little credibility Obama had in leading world affairs. Russians and the Syrians were ecstatic. As Richard Spencer reports in the Daily Telegraph:
"These agreements are a victory for Syria, achieved thanks to our Russian friends," Ali Haidar, the minister for national reconciliation, told Russian media.
Russian officials were keen to put a positive spin on Mr Assad's concession, saying they had prevented a "mistake the size of Suez".

"It was going to be a disaster to intervene militarily in Syria," one Russian official said. "We saved them. Vladimir Putin, really, deserves the Nobel Peace Prize."
Well, why not give Putin the Nobel Peace Prize. The Prize Committee gave it to Obama based on solely on wishful thinking. Do the Norweigans want it back?

For some good background on how and why that flawed agreement came about see Peter Foster's September 2013 column in the Daily Telegraph. Foster describes how
Countless members of the foreign policy establishment instantly knew, a Faustian pact in which Mr Putin saved Mr Obama's blushes at home in exchange for a dramatic loss of American face abroad.
Nevertheless Obama has insisted that the Syrian agreement was a good deal. He insisted, along with Kerry and nearly every other top Democrat that the Syrian deal had been a success. Kerry and others repeatedly claimed that "100%" of Syria's chemical weapons had been removed and destroyed. Watch:

KERRY: "We struck a deal where we got 100 percent of the chemical weapons out."

The snarky tone in Obama's voice leaves a bitter taste after seeing the deaths of thousands of children due to chemical weapons that Obama and Democrats claimed were destroyed. Both Human Rights Watch and the Arms Control Association have continued to document the use of such weapons following Obama's victory lap. Meanwhile, the self-professed media fact checkers at Politifact can't bring themselves to call Kerry a liar even when it's as plain as the nose on your face!

Obama went on to claim another diplomatic victory in the nuclear agreement with Iran. How long before that too is exposed as a sham with horrific consequences?

Trump Pressuring Putin

OK, so we know what Obama and Kerry did created a mess that cost many innocent lives. Trump's limited strike was measured. In my view too limited and measured. But Trump is upping the diplomatic game where Obama and Kerry dropped the ball.  In his speech announcing limited strikes Trump laid the blame directly at the feet of the Russians. This has been followed at other levels with senior officials echoing the President's words.

At an emergency meeting of the UN Security Council Hon. Niki Haley, U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations recounted the number of times the U.S. and allies have engaged in diplomatic efforts to resolve the crisis but were blocked by Russia. Haley said:
HALEY: We can all see that a Russian disinformation campaign is in full force this morning. But Russia’s desperate attempts at deflection cannot change the facts. A large body of information indicates that the Syrian regime used chemical weapons in Douma on April 7. There is clear information demonstrating Assad’s culpability.

The pictures of dead children were not fake news. They were the result of the Syrian regime’s barbaric inhumanity. And they were the result of the regime and Russia’s failure to live up to their international commitments to remove all chemical weapons from Syria. The United States, France, and the United Kingdom acted after careful evaluation of these facts.
Syria committed to abide by the Chemical Weapons Convention, meaning it could no longer have chemical weapons on its soil.

President Putin said Russia would guarantee that Syria complied. We hoped that this diplomacy would succeed in putting an end to the horror of chemical attacks in Syria. But as we see from the past year, that did not happen.

While Russia was busy protecting the regime, Assad took notice. The regime knew it could act with impunity, and it did.
Russia’s veto was the green light for the Assad regime to use these most barbaric weapons against the Syrian people, in complete violation of international law. The United States and our allies were not going to let that stand. Chemical weapons are a threat to us all. They are a unique threat, a type of weapon so evil that the international community agreed they must be banned.

We cannot stand by and let Russia trash every international norm that we stand for, and allow the use of chemical weapons to go unanswered. And just as the Syrian regime’s use of chemical weapons last weekend was not an isolated incident, our response is part of a new course charted last year to deter future use of chemical weapons.
The United States is deeply grateful to the United Kingdom and France for its part in the coalition to defend the prohibition of chemical weapons. We worked in lock step, we were in complete agreement. Last night, our great friends and indispensable allies shouldered a burden that benefits all of us. The civilized world owes them its thanks. In the weeks and months to come, the Security Council should take time to reflect on its role in defending the international rule of law.

The Security Council has failed in its duty to hold those who use chemical weapons to account. That failure is largely due to Russian obstruction. We call on Russia to take a hard look at the company it keeps, and live up to its responsibilities as a Permanent Member of the Council and defend the actual principles the United Nations was meant to promote.

Last night, we successfully hit the heart of Syria’s chemical weapons enterprise, and because of these actions, we are confident that we have crippled Syria’s chemical weapons program.

We are prepared to sustain this pressure, if the Syrian regime is foolish enough to test our will.
No more Mr. (or Ms.) Nice Guy. You do not want to cross Niki Haley. Or Donald Trump. Finally, there is a new Sheriff in town and the world will be a better place because of it!

Trump Offers Russia and Iran a Choice: Are You With Community of Nations or a Mass Murdering Monster?

So much for being "Putin's Puppet" as the Trump-Russia crowd claimed!

Friday evening April 13 in the Diplomatic Reception Room of the White House.
Friday evening President Trump came to the Diplomatic Reception Room in the White House and said:
My fellow Americans, a short time ago, I ordered the United States Armed Forces to launch precision strikes on targets associated with the chemical weapons capabilities of Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad. A combined operation with the armed forces of France and the United Kingdom is now underway. We thank them both.
The President went on to describe the reasons for the attacks. Full transcript is here. Video here.

The President also sent a direct message to both the Russians and the Iranians:
I also have a message tonight for the two governments most responsible for supporting, equipping, and financing the criminal Assad regime.

To Iran, and to Russia, I ask: What kind of a nation wants to be associated with the mass murder of innocent men, women, and children?

The nations of the world can be judged by the friends they keep. No nation can succeed in the long run by promoting rogue states, brutal tyrants, and murderous dictators.

In 2013, President Putin and his government promised the world that they would guarantee the elimination of Syria’s chemical weapons. Assad’s recent attack — and today’s response — are the direct result of Russia’s failure to keep that promise.

Russia must decide if it will continue down this dark path, or if it will join with civilized nations as a force for stability and peace. Hopefully, someday we’ll get along with Russia, and maybe even Iran — but maybe not.

I will say this: The United States has a lot to offer, with the greatest and most powerful economy in the history of the world.
Trump leading with our allies invites Russia to join the community of civilized nations.  The choice is theirs! 
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