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America First!

Written By: - Date published: 8:00 am, November 22nd, 2018 - 96 comments
Categories: Donald Trump, International, Iran, us politics - Tags:

Actual press release from the Trump White House.

The country of Iran, as an example, is responsible for a bloody proxy war against Saudi Arabia in Yemen, trying to destabilize Iraq’s fragile attempt at democracy, supporting the terror group Hezbollah in Lebanon, propping up dictator Bashar Assad in Syria (who has killed millions of his own citizens), and much more. Likewise, the Iranians have killed many Americans and other innocent people throughout the Middle East. Iran states openly, and with great force, “Death to America!” and “Death to Israel!” Iran is considered “the world’s leading sponsor of terror.”

On the other hand, Saudi Arabia would gladly withdraw from Yemen if the Iranians would agree to leave. They would immediately provide desperately needed humanitarian assistance. Additionally, Saudi Arabia has agreed to spend billions of dollars in leading the fight against Radical Islamic Terrorism.

After my heavily negotiated trip to Saudi Arabia last year, the Kingdom agreed to spend and invest $450 billion in the United States. This is a record amount of money. It will create hundreds of thousands of jobs, tremendous economic development, and much additional wealth for the United States. Of the $450 billion, $110 billion will be spent on the purchase of military equipment from Boeing, Lockheed Martin, Raytheon and many other great U.S. defense contractors. If we foolishly cancel these contracts, Russia and China would be the enormous beneficiaries – and very happy to acquire all of this newfound business. It would be a wonderful gift to them directly from the United States!

The crime against Jamal Khashoggi was a terrible one, and one that our country does not condone. Indeed, we have taken strong action against those already known to have participated in the murder. After great independent research, we now know many details of this horrible crime. We have already sanctioned 17 Saudis known to have been involved in the murder of Mr. Khashoggi, and the disposal of his body.

Representatives of Saudi Arabia say that Jamal Khashoggi was an “enemy of the state” and a member of the Muslim Brotherhood, but my decision is in no way based on that – this is an unacceptable and horrible crime. King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman vigorously deny any knowledge of the planning or execution of the murder of Mr. Khashoggi. Our intelligence agencies continue to assess all information, but it could very well be that the Crown Prince had knowledge of this tragic event – maybe he did and maybe he didn’t!

That being said, we may never know all of the facts surrounding the murder of Mr. Jamal Khashoggi. In any case, our relationship is with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. They have been a great ally in our very important fight against Iran. The United States intends to remain a steadfast partner of Saudi Arabia to ensure the interests of our country, Israel and all other partners in the region. It is our paramount goal to fully eliminate the threat of terrorism throughout the world!

I understand there are members of Congress who, for political or other reasons, would like to go in a different direction – and they are free to do so. I will consider whatever ideas are presented to me, but only if they are consistent with the absolute security and safety of America. After the United States, Saudi Arabia is the largest oil producing nation in the world. They have worked closely with us and have been very responsive to my requests to keeping oil prices at reasonable levels – so important for the world. As President of the United States I intend to ensure that, in a very dangerous world, America is pursuing its national interests and vigorously contesting countries that wish to do us harm. Very simply it is called America First!

The world is a very dangerous place!

https://www.whitehouse.gov/briefings-statements/statement-president-donald-j-trump-standing-saudi-arabia/

96 comments on “America First! ”

  1. marty mars 1

    We are officially in Alice in Wonderland territory. All bets are off.

    • DJ Ward 1.1

      Can you say what was wrong with his comment?

      • marty mars 1.1.1

        His mouth opened and words came out.

      • How about you impress us all by doing your own analysis, DJ? What was good, was was not good. Let’s see if you can identify the issues.

        • DJ Ward 1.1.2.1

          We ignor realism.
          Iran has long been the enemy of the US. Similar to Cuba the real dispute began when corporate assets were repatriated. Obviously there’s plenty of argument on justification for than in regards to Iran.
          US being Christian has real fears about a religious takeover of a nation by radical Islam. Especially when the state becomes secondary to the religion. Lots of hypocrisy with Saudi Arabia and Israel.
          Iran has threatened the US, consistently, that is undeniable.
          Iraq was a US proxy in the war against Iran.
          Saudi Arabia is now that proxy.

          Iran is involved as stated by Trump in those war effected nations.
          Yemen was a basket case that began a civil war. Saudi Arabia took sides as there hatred of Iran is greater than the US hatred of Iran. If the Saudis stop fighting in Yemen, Yemen will fully become a proxy of Iran.

          Saudi Arabia has a long history of purchasing military equipment from many nations. Stoping US sales will have no effect on the buying of weapons. In effect supporting the military industrial complex of China or Russia. Agian not friends of the US.

      • Morrissey 1.1.3

        The very first paragraph is a lie. Replace the word “Iran” with “the Jews” and it’s pretty much a Hitler rant from 1938.

      • Draco T Bastard 1.1.4

        Everything that he accuses Iran of there is a) no actual evidence for and b) something that the US has done time and time again. In fact, the reason why Iran is a theocratic state itself is because of the actions of the US from when they overthrew a democracy and put in a puppet dictatorship.

        Hypocrisy is what we consistently get from the RWNJs of the world.

        • DJ Ward 1.1.4.1

          I you saying Syria has no Iranian troops fighting for them?

          Anyway interesting nation. Originally invaded by the UK and Russia. Staunch US allies until the revolution. The revolution labelling the US the boogeyman as part of its attempt to destroy desires for democracy by its US supporting opponents.

          It’s not the first time the US put in a puppet, aka Key.

          • Draco T Bastard 1.1.4.1.1

            I you saying Syria has no Iranian troops fighting for them?

            I don’t know and don’t care. If the government of Syria invited them in then that’s there concern.

            I do care about the US supported Islamists in Syria that are causing an unnecessary war and apparently doing the US’s bidding.

            Staunch US allies until the revolution.

            No they weren’t. The US installed puppet shah may have been but I doubt that the people were. After all, it’s difficult to like the country that overthrew your elected government and then put in place a dictator that performed all sorts of atrocities on the people.

            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SAVAK

            Basically, there’s a very good reason why the revolution succeeded against the US’s wishes.

            • DJ Ward 1.1.4.1.1.1

              Absolutely. But they were allies.

              The people’s wishes are often different from the governments wishes. Many did not agree with Vietnam but we sent troops anyway.

              People like Morrissey would probably like Israel to be destroyed. The government would prefer a peaceful settlement and freedom as an independent nation for what’s left of Palestine.

              Iran was far more western, like Afganistan, before the religous extremists who hate the US took power.

              • Draco T Bastard

                Iran was far more western, like Afganistan, before the religous extremists who hate the US took power.

                Are you purposefully ignoring the role that the US took in bringing about the Islamist revolution?
                Do you really think that ‘Western’ includes death squads that Iran under the US supported Shah had?

                Yes, Iran and the majority of Iranians hate the US and the west – they have very good reason.

                The US and a hell of a lot of the rest of the ‘West’ have been attacking the ME under different guises and excuses for centuries. The present action of the US and other Western powers in Syria are just another action in that ongoing war.

                • DJ Ward

                  You didn’t comment on the quote you highlighted. Are you saying they were not more western than today. The treatment of women, clothing rules, education (Afghanistan, not Iran as it has the same 2:1 bias towards females as NZ).

                  You went on a bit af a rant on history that I’m not 100% on, but I new about everything you said.

                  You can go back a bit further by the way.
                  Alexander the Great.

                  Don’t forget The Mongolians.

                  Technically if you believe in Sky Fairies, they were all wiped out by the great flood as well.

              • Morrissey

                People like Morrissey would probably like Israel to be destroyed.

                Idiot. Your ignorance is plain to everybody on this site, and now so is your flagrant dishonesty.

                Go back to Whaleoil, you moron.

                MEMO EDITORS

                Is this fellow to be allowed free rein to make such incendiary false statements? Are there no standards of basic truthfulness and integrity on The Standard any more?

                • DJ Ward

                  I said probably. You do do a lot of Jew behavour is bad posts. What is your position on Israel then? You seem a little possessed by it, which is fine, but I’m confused by your motive for those posts.

                  I have never once posted on Whale Oil. The only time I’ve even read something there is if a comment links to it, and that’s very rare.

                  Your comment.
                  “Idiot. Your ignorance is plain to everybody on this site, and now so is your flagrant dishonesty.”

                  I apologise if I offended you.

                  • Morrissey

                    I said probably. You do do a lot of Jew behavour [sic] is bad posts.

                    What the FUCK? You ignoramus, what the HELL are you talking about?

                    What is your position on Israel then? You seem a little possessed by it, which is fine, but I’m confused by your motive for those posts.

                    “Possessed” by it? I post about sports, New Zealand politics, the media, literature, education, movies—a whole range of topics. You, with nothing to back it up, claim I am “a little possessed” by Israel. Your statement is worthless.

                    I have never once posted on Whale Oil. The only time I’ve even read something there is if a comment links to it, and that’s very rare.

                    You should. That’s your intellectual level, I’m afraid.

                    Your comment.
                    “Idiot. Your ignorance is plain to everybody on this site, and now so is your flagrant dishonesty.” I apologise if I offended you.

                    You “apologise” in the same breath as your marginally literate claim that I “do a lot of Jew behavour is bad posts.”

                    MEMO TO ADMINISTRATORS OF THIS SITE:

                    Are people like this fellow free to post heinous and fantastic accusations like he has? Is something going to be done about this or not?

                • Ed

                  We have a new troll.
                  DJ Ward …….

          • Gabby 1.1.4.1.2

            Why would anybody be saying that dud4? That’d be mute or sutin.

          • KJT 1.1.4.1.3

            The USA, and UK, toppled Iran’s democratic government in the 50’s. And installed a despotic dictatorship, the Shah.
            Despite that Iran has signed a non proliferation treaty with the USA.
            It is elements in Saudi Arabia that were responsible for the twin towers. The same organisation the US armed in Syria. The same organisation that Iran opposes. FIFY.
            Most of your statements are nonsense, just like Trump’s.

      • Ed 1.1.5

        What was right with it?
        Are you deliberately trolling?

        • DJ Ward 1.1.5.1

          He outlined his administrations position on the matter. In that regard it’s correct. That’s different from my Personel view.

          My Personel view is people that believe in sky fairies like Saudi Arabia, Iran, Israel, are crazy. Nothing’s sane when dealing with crazy people.

          The US is an independent collection of states and is free to trade with monsters for all I care. Saudi Arabia, or more correctly a small group within Saudi Arabia is responsible for what happened. Trump is not responsible in any way, nor should any US Buisiness be punished for individuals actions.

          Trump can’t just say we will not trade with this nation. The senate makes those decisions.

          Has NZ suspended trade with Saudi Arabia?
          Has NZ suspended trade with Russia over the UK, Russian poisonings?
          Has NZ suspended trade with Israel for extrajudicial killings?
          Has NZ suspended trade with China for the ethnic cleansing in China?

          To call the press release “Alice in wonderland” is a bit TDS.

          The reality is this. The press release was aimed at the sharemarkets. Cutting 100’s of billions from the economy could cause what is clearly an overheated market to collapse. Trumps obligations are to the people of the US, not you.

          New Zealand is not immune from the global repercussions of things going bad in the US.

      • soddenleaf 1.1.6

        Trump is only one facet in the problem; Khashoggi as the US resident. Also Trump has options that meet King Salmans own standards, trust and justice, he just is giving time for the Saudis to choose their own future. I.e. do nothing or not.

        Brilliant undermining move on the part of a Arab neighbor, trumped up charges on a UK doctorate student. Brilliant ad for anyone working in a region where they bond foreigners, kill their own messengers, and now fix up the learned. Look past the bling, have they really just been sniffing oil fumes too long. With partners like this no wonder Iran is winning.

    • Stunned Mullet 1.2

  2. Dennis Frank 2

    Thanks for that. Fair enough, as far as it goes. The game will change if any of the 17 implicates the CP but since they’re all under the regime’s control that’s highly unlikely. If Trump is clever enough, he will insist that the Saudis send the 17 to Turkey to enable prosecution. If Turkey then provides them with the option of minimal punishment for acting on political orders, and Trump supports them in that, the CP will become expendable…

    • DJ Ward 2.1

      Good comment. I think that Trumps comment is a version of propaganda in general but you picked out the important point.

      Behind the scenes, the crown prince is a marked man and will likely be replaced.

      The only issue with that is internally in Saudi Arabia he has shown himself to be a powerful, nasty, individual. He has proven with other actions that he will destroy anybody that gets in his way. This recent murder is in this guys playbook.

      Trump says he has personally spoken to the leadership on 5 occasions asking if the Prince did it. They have denied it. Trump also says as you point out, they may know he did it but are yet to prove it.

      Having a good understanding of Trump, my guess is when it’s 100% proven Trump will put the knife in demanding change.

    • soddenleaf 2.2

      Saudi Arabia isn’t just facing trump ire. The CP has no legacy, and it looks by the week his Dad won’t either. It’s called a heavy weight tied to leg dropped in the ocean.

      • Dennis Frank 2.2.1

        You think? House of Saud has a century of supreme power behind them, in which domestic competition has been totally eliminated. For your scenario to be realistic, it would have to be a family decision – effectively, a no-confidence vote. Inasmuch as insiders rarely report dissent, we have no basis to assume an imminent shift as far as I know. This tribe-sized family is unique on the global stage.

  3. WeTheBleeple 3

    Yep. Keeping oil prices down to benefit the world will actually fuck us all.

    Just hope that orange prick is gone in two years and the Dems can thwart him every time he starts on the national security horseshit.

    Mass murder for profit, this is his pivot now. Propagation of chaos and division is all this man has done. Oh, and feed the rich.

    Divest from US companies. Fuck em.

    • Brutus Iscariot 3.1

      You’re assuming that the establishment disagrees with him. Ties with Saudi go deep into US political circles (both Republican and Democrat).

      A Clinton White House would certainly see a continued cosy relationship.

      What has really happened behind the scenes is that the US have said to MbS – “we will save you (from your internal enemies), but you are now ours”. The first thing they’ve done in return is pump more oil to lower prices – and in future will be even more compliant.

    • DJ Ward 3.2

      Yemen started under Obama. Please explain.
      Syria started under Obama. Please explain.

      He has announced removal of direct military support in Yemen.

      Last time oil prices rose significantly it triggered the GFC. The next time we get a GFC NZ has no significant reserve capacity for debt to smooth out the effects. Aucklands house price bubble will collapse along with huge job losses.

      • WeTheBleeple 3.2.1

        There’s plenty to be done; namely, retrofit our country, and save the planet and it’s diversity of inhabitants. Then we can worry about housing bubbles and market speculation.

        House price bubble collapsing, well, as you said: it is a bubble.

        A bauble.

        Divesting from oil and moving into sustainable power generation means we no longer have to worship at the alter of these false deities.

        • DJ Ward 3.2.1.1

          I’m very pro renewable energy. But as I’m also a realist, I’m not anti oil.

          You don’t save anything from a position of poverty and disorder.

          Positive change is enabled with stability and economy with capacity to invest in change.

      • Tricledrown 3.2.2

        DJ Ward your full of it no significant capacity for debt pure lies we have one of the lowest govt debts in the world.
        The last GFC didn’t hardly dented Auckland housing prices
        Scare mongering pathetically

        • DJ Ward 3.2.2.1

          I’m not scare mongering.
          We had low debt. National used debt to cushion the blow. In doing so it propped up the banks ability to maintain what is an inflated market. Your correct that the result was just a stalling in the market rather than a fall.

          Presently we have debt capacity but that takes NZ into heavily in debt. A step closer to a failed economy.

          Stock markets are overheated and corrections are taking place. Tech stocks have recently dropped 20% as speculation and real incomes clash.

          You are very wrong in thinking much higher fuel prices would not trigger financial instability. Even the recent stock market burp coincided with fuel price rise.

          If you took at a loan today at 4% to buy an Auckland house, maxing you income out to get in the market, your in danger. If interest rates go to 6%, a not unreasonable possibility that persons payments rise by 50%. They will loose everything.

          We have low government debt but dangerously high banking debt.

          Scaremongering is the opposite of putting ones head in the sand.
          I was just commenting.
          The scaremongering was in your mind.

          • Tricledrown 3.2.2.1.1

            More scaremongering when markets are down interest rates go down.
            You understand very little about economics.

      • Gabby 3.2.3

        Yennah dud4.
        Yennah dud4.
        Don’t try and blame the Barmer for middle east shitholism.

        • DJ Ward 3.2.3.1

          Actually if you read my comment.

          I stated a fact, in both cases.

          The intimacies of that fact is open to broader analysis.
          You imply that the US engaged in no military actions or supporting actions prior to the arrival of Trump.

          Blame?

          Yemen is a poorer nation with the same religous conflicts that Iraq has. Yemen groups were engaged in piracy. Obama is not responsible for Yemen and on that basis neither is Trump. Unless you have double standards, then you might be correct.

          Let’s see. Obama policy in Iraq resulted in ISIS gaining strength. Obama supported the rebels in Syria as pro Israel, anti Assad policy. While Bush created the mess, specifically related to oppression of opportunity for the minority (no 2) religion in Iraq, Obama failed to address the underlining resulting civil war, and let the result, ISIS develope for far to long.

          What does dud4 translate too, sorry I’m not a millenial snowflake, but I converse in plain English. With spelling mistakes.

  4. Micko 4

    I thought this was satire, until I got to the link at the bottom. An example of Poe’s law, but operating in the reverse direction.

  5. Cinny 5

    Sounds like Saudia Arabia first, rather than America.

    Maybe if a business leader, a beauty queen or hollywood star had been murdered instead of a journalist he would have a different outlook.

    Of course it would have nothing to do with jared kushner being so buddy buddy with MBS.

    • Michelle 5.1

      Sounds like trump family first more like it and America second

    • soddenleaf 5.2

      beats me how the U.S. wins by telling dissenters not to expect help from the U.S. given how they nedd Intel on both enemies and friends alike. Anyway how is killing a us resident coz he writes stuff people pay to read, and interfering in a u.s. election any different, it’s the same motivation, too mess with America. Making America Great again, hardly.

  6. Nick 6

    Anything decent or coherent from tfrump was an honest mistake (the first honest thing he’s done) . Hopefully the dems, and the independents can lame duck him long enough to minimize anymore damage he’s doing to the world.

    • DJ Ward 6.1

      At least he had the intelligence to go into a debate unequiped intellectually, while the superstar intellect Clinton had to be given the questions and prepared answers. Clinton still lost the debate.

      Just saying.

      People are making a childish mistake when they call Trump stupid.

      Actually he just signed a bipartisan prison reform law that is more Labour like than Labour can manage. So no lame duck sorry, he’s too smart for that to happen.

      He is actually a Democrate, who was rejected by the Democrates, so he did the smartest thing in US political History. He stole the Republican nomination.

      • boggis the cat 6.1.1

        Trump could well be the stupidest US President so far. He is certainly an infantile, vain, despicable, and craven petty tyrant.

        If you approve of such a person, then it doesn’t reflect well on you.

        • DJ Ward 6.1.1.1

          As far as I’m concerned as soon as you used the term stupid to describe Trump you revealed you don’t have a clue what your talking about.
          The use of the term infantile was childish.
          Vain indicates you think your better than him, which is vanity.
          Despicable is a strong word for a person with no criminal convictions.
          Craven petty tyrant is interesting because you used the word petty which is completely appropriate for your comment. I have no idea how you came to the conclusion he is a coward or that he is a cruel and oppressive ruler.

          Diagnoses TDS.

          • McFlock 6.1.1.1.1

            You think it’s all just a contrivance? Calling the burnt town he was just looking at “Pleasure” instead of “Paradise”, the line about raking the forests, the tweets, the transparent corruption of deploying troops to the border before the election and drawing them down after it, and so on?

            It’s a possibility that passes my mind every so often, but I suspect it’s more a case of “cometh the hour, cometh the narcissistic and stupid piece of shit”.

  7. SaveNZ 7

    I’d say siding with Saudi about a cold blooded murder, has just lost Trump the election.

    (unless the Democrats screw it up, by being completely out of touch an go with an identity politics campaign aka vote for me, I’m a women! or having dirty in fighting against the more left of their democrats or still pressing the pro globalisation buttons).

    • Morrissey 7.1

      Since when did siding with a country about cold blooded murders cost any U.S. president an election?

      How many times did Obama meet with Netanyahu before the 2012 election?

      • SaveNZ 7.1.1

        I think a taped torture and murder extensively internationally published around the world of a US citizen and journalist, with the president saying meh, has struck a cord. Even republicans can’t stomach it.

        Other presidents had their security forces create distraction, in this case, Trump is directly undermining his own CIA.

        US don’t like weakness and Trump giving Saudi a free pass on this, also after 9/11 makes US look weak. People are getting wise to the Iran/Syria bogeyman story in the Middle East as why the US always covers Saudi’s arse.

        It is the Democrats election to lose and lets hope they did some soul searching on how they got so lazy, complacent and out of touch, that Trump beat them last time.

        • DJ Ward 7.1.1.1

          How is he undermining the CIA. It was the CIA who investigated and showed him their findings. They believe the Prince did it, but have not proven it.

          The President does not control the CIA.

          I’m pretty certain the Saudi regime is feeling the pressure over this.

          The Democrates are too rapt up in identity politics, the never Trumpers, irrational things like Russian collusion. Plus some very radical socialists. The biggest boogeyman for the Democrates is they have no stand out candidates for president. Trump will have 5 years practice and will be a formidable opponent.

      • North 7.1.2

        Bad Man Morrissey !
        You’re do-doing your bad stories do Jews thingy of Ward’s accusatory fascination.
        Jeepers Morrissey !!!

        • Morrissey 7.1.2.1

          Ward, like Gosman, is some fool from the National Party. Like Gosman, he’s a waste of time.

    • JessNZ 7.2

      The Saudis had clear links to the 9/11 mass murders that were never seriously investigated (commission LOL), but GW Bush has yet to admit or be held accountable for his protectionism.

      https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2016/jul/16/911-report-release-saudi-arabia-us-relations

      Most Republican voters will barely acknowledge that Khashoggi was a person (wrong colour) much less someone they should care about and act on (weird story, sounds like a movie, happened in a country they couldn’t find on a map, full of non-white people).

      You should hear them reinvent the facts any time a nonwhite person gets murdered by police or violent armed racists in the US, or their hometowns. And by 2020, few will remember Khashoggi at all.

  8. Cinny 8

    The Iranian Foreign Minister put out a tweet yesterday in response…. made me laugh.

    “Mr. Trump bizarrely devotes the FIRST paragraph of his shameful statement on Saudi atrocities to accuse IRAN of every sort of malfeasance he can think of.

    “Perhaps we’re also responsible for the California fires, because we didn’t help rake the forests – just like the Finns do?”

  9. Gosman 9

    I’m not sure what the issue here is.

    The US has decided to make Saudi Arabia their key Arab ally in the Middle East to counter the influence of Iran. I personally don’t think they should do this because of the Islamic ideology underpinning that country but I can also see why they would given the amount of money and oil the Saudi’s have and the lack of any other alternative in the region (Iraq was a potential alternative but seems to be closer to Iran than the US at the moment).

    All the US is doing here is engaging in realpolitik. The Saudi regime is unpalatable but it is less unpalatable than the alternative.

    • Bewildered 9.1

      Yep people tend to confuse individual morales with the morales of the state, completely different contexts The state has a lot of power to do and does things for the greater good that no individual can do or would be wrong Thus the US decision by way of trump as democratically elected leader is completely rationale and morale from a US point of view, State sanctioned murder on behalf of the Saudi king is not

  10. joe90 10

    Iran, as an example, is responsible for a bloody proxy war against Saudi Arabia in Yemen

    Lying pricks.

    This was a local war until Saudi Arabia intervened, and consequently Iran began supplying low level support to Houthi insurgents.

    • Bewildered 10.1

      Yes Iran is a virtue of peace love and harmony in the region (sarc)

      • ianmac 10.1.1

        Bewildered can you name one country attacked by Iran in the last 200 years?
        Can you name more than ten countries USA has attacked in the last 200 years?

        • Gosman 10.1.1.1

          The Ottoman empire, Russia, and Afghanistan were all attacked by the country that is now known as Iran in the past 200 years. They also invaded the US embassy in 1979

          • ianmac 10.1.1.1.1

            Russia V Iran 1828
            Ottoman V Iran 1823
            Afghanistan boundary changes for ages and a bit hard to identify attacks.

            Hardly the warlike image used by Trump, certainly not in recent history. However USA heavily sponsored Iraq to try and invade Iran in the 1980s but Iran repelled the American efforts. Poor losers?

            • Gosman 10.1.1.1.1.1

              The US did not encourage Iraq to invade Iran in 1980. They may have turned a blind eye to it and latter provided (limited) intelligence information to the Iraqis but Iraq was never a close ally of the US in the 1980’s

          • Ed 10.1.1.1.2

            And the U.S.?

        • Bewildered 10.1.1.2

          Have not got time to go through list but Japan and Germany are to good ones from nz point of view

          On Iran see Gosmsn

      • Gabby 10.1.2

        One extreme to the other beewee.

  11. Ad 11

    The global left is being squeezed out by populists, fundamentalists, militants and tyrants.

    We don’t need to turn into Kissingers but we need to get our heads around this and engage.

    • boggis the cat 11.1

      It looks to me like ‘the left’ is making a strong come-back in the US. That bodes well if it continues.

      Also, on the subject of ‘the global left’; there has been a resurgence in leftist student activism in China (of all places). Interesting interview on this topic here: https://youtu.be/3szD60z53yc

  12. gsays 12

    My initial response was that there was breathtaking honesty when trump said about not wanting to rattle the Saudis because they spend so much money with the US corporations.

    In a nutshell, why we are stuffed.

    • Bewilderd 12.1

      Yep same reason we don’t want to rattle Chinese or the US, it’s simply geopolitics you can’t change. Countries will always have competing interests, relative bargaining positions and priorities requiring trade offs, concessions and picking your battles To think otherwise is naive

  13. Macro 13

    Here is the opening statement of an op ed written by Fred Ryan who is publisher and chief executive of The Washington Post. (the paper for which Khashoggi wrote). Fred Ryan served as an assistant to President Ronald Reagan.

    A clear and dangerous message has been sent to tyrants around the world: Flash enough money in front of the president of the United States, and you can literally get away with murder.

    In a bizarre, inaccurate and rambling statement — one offering a good reminder why Twitter has character limits — President Trump whitewashed the Saudi government’s brutal murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi. In the process, the president maligned a good and innocent man, tarring Khashoggi as an “enemy of the state” — a label the Saudis themselves have not used publicly — while proclaiming to the world that Trump’s relationship with Saudi Arabia’s 33-year-old crown prince was too important to risk over the murder of a journalist. Whatever objections people may have to our turning a blind eye to Khashoggi’s assassination, the president argued, they do not outweigh the (grossly inflated) revenue we can expect from U.S.-Saudi arms deals.

    My bold.

  14. R.P Mcmurphy 14

    war is like love. it will always find a way; Bertolt Brecht: ‘Mother Courage’

  15. greywarshark 15

    The morning tennis game DJW against all comers is on; DJW shows stamina and cunning, will his moves dominate the brave little TS who often show innovative moves and bring ebullience to the fore against bullying from RW doggedness?

  16. At the start of 2015 if one had said Trump would be President a good many including myself would have laughed out loud. But starting later that year, step by step, not only has he become President, but the barometer for American credibility is in free fall with no idea where the bottom of the abyss is – if there even is one.

    Just today I saw that he was having another go at getting transgenders out of the U.S. military, which I assume means the L’s, the G’s, the B’s in L.G.B.T. are next. Which kind of undermines his supposed support for the U.S. military by denying it potentially thousands of recruits.

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