The 2016 US presidential election took an interesting, and what seems to be a protracted, turn in July last year when the DNC server was hacked and nearly 20,000 leaked emails were published by Wikileaks. The emails indicated infighting, unsavory feelings, quid-pro-quo deals, rigged town-hall events, and flip-flopping on policy positions.
It has been a week of repeated insults to U.S. adventurism and Donald Trump's ill-defined Middle East policy. In Iraq, thanks to Iranian backing and astute negotiation, Kirkuk province is back in the hands of the Shia government in Baghdad halving the Kurds' oil revenues. Iran now has a land bridge through Syria to the Mediterranean improving the accessibility of its exports to Europe.
President Trump’s executive office, on October 2, backed the US House of Representatives ban on 20-week abortions, labeled the H.R. 36: Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act. This bill, if signed into law, will outlaw termination of pregnancy past the 20-week mark, except if the pregnancy threatens the mother’s life or if it’s the result of rape or incest.
A uniquely wayward president, Donald Trump, has managed to isolate the United States equally uniquely, and contrary to the stated position of his Secretaries of State and Defense and the National Security Adviser (respectively Rex Tillersen, John Mattis and H.R. McMaster) by scuttling the 2015 Iran nuclear deal citing issues outside its scope.
While President Donald Trump is very fond of proclaiming that the Iran Nuclear Deal was an “embarrassment” and a “horrible deal” he neglects to remember that the USA was not the only party to this deal, and in fact, was literally forced to the table by the P5+1 nations which included Germany, Russia, the United Kingdom, China, and France, in the face of great opposition by the huge money and lobbying powers of Saudi Arabia, Israel and the Neo-Conservatives in the United States.
Moves by the United States and Turkey that largely ban travel of their nationals between the two countries is about more than two long-standing NATO allies having a spat amid shifting alliances in a volatile part of the world. It is a fight between two leaders, US President Donald J. Trump and his Turkish counterpart, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, confronted with the limitations and fallout of their shared desire to redefine or restrict basic freedoms.
If there is a mass shooting and anyone is asked where, the answer is likely to be the United States. The reason of course is the easy availability of guns, even guns that fire like machine guns. The Second Amendment allows the 'right to bear arms' -- to prevent tyranny say the proponents. Yet, the world has moved beyond guns for the tyranny we face today is a tyranny not of guns but of the mind.