Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Winter Turning to Summer of Discontent?

 

There is a useful fiction that “politics stops at the water’s edge,” but that has always been only a fiction. So, we should not be surprised that politics drive divergent responses to the death of a terrorist mastermind, an actual general, with a real uniform, in the “terror war.” At the same time, we should be cautioned by the contrast between the opening lines of Richard III and the end. It was not just a rapid change of political weather, but also of the seasons, as winter turned to summer only to turn back to winter for the house of York.

Remember that the line after “now is the winter of our discontent” is “made glorious summer by this sun of York.” At the time, the Duke of Lancaster and the supporters of his house, might have said, “now is the summer of our repose made gloomy winter by this storm from York.” So it has always been with political power. “Can’t we all get along?” Not when there are even the smallest stakes (see Henry Kissinger’s (?) snark about academic internal politics).

It is astonishing, in a way, that no one had previously seriously sought to kill the leader of the best resourced, best trained, best led transnational terrorist network in the world. What apparently stopped both Bush the Second and Obama, to say nothing of Netanyahu, was the uniform. More precisely, the uniform of a sovereign state, the Islamic Republic of Iran. As the House of Saud sought to extend its global reach through building mosques with Wahhabist imams around the world, so the Khomeinist regime in Iran sought to extend its influence and interests through paramilitary and outright terrorist organizations. The man in charge would naturally be a general, Major General Qassem Suleimani.

Here is what the New Yorker magazine told us about Major General Qassem Suleimani, in an article entitled “The Shadow Commander:”

[In February 2012], some of Iran’s most influential leaders gathered at the Amir al-Momenin Mosque, in northeast Tehran, inside a gated community reserved for officers of the Revolutionary Guard. They had come to pay their last respects to a fallen comrade. Hassan Shateri, a veteran of Iran’s covert wars throughout the Middle East and South Asia, was a senior commander in a powerful, élite branch of the Revolutionary Guard called the Quds Force. The force is the sharp instrument of Iranian foreign policy, roughly analogous to a combined C.I.A. and Special Forces; its name comes from the Persian word for Jerusalem, which its fighters have promised to liberate. Since 1979, its goal has been to subvert Iran’s enemies and extend the country’s influence across the Middle East. Shateri had spent much of his career abroad, first in Afghanistan and then in Iraq, where the Quds Force helped Shiite militias kill American soldiers.

…Shateri’s casket was wrapped in an Iranian flag, and gathered around it were the commander of the Revolutionary Guard, dressed in green fatigues; a member of the plot to murder four exiled opposition leaders in a Berlin restaurant in 1992; and the father of Imad Mughniyeh, the Hezbollah commander believed to be responsible for the bombings that killed more than two hundred and fifty Americans in Beirut in 1983.

…Kneeling in the second row on the mosque’s carpeted floor was Major General Qassem Suleimani, the Quds Force’s leader: a small man of fifty-six, with silver hair, a close-cropped beard, and a look of intense self-containment. It was Suleimani who had sent Shateri, an old and trusted friend, to his death. As Revolutionary Guard commanders, he and Shateri belonged to a small fraternity formed during the Sacred Defense, the name given to the Iran-Iraq War, which lasted from 1980 to 1988 and left as many as a million people dead. It was a catastrophic fight, but for Iran it was the beginning of a three-decade project to build a Shiite sphere of influence, stretching across Iraq and Syria to the Mediterranean. Along with its allies in Syria and Lebanon, Iran forms an Axis of Resistance, arrayed against the region’s dominant Sunni powers and the West. In Syria, the project hung in the balance, and Suleimani was mounting a desperate fight, even if the price of victory was a sectarian conflict that engulfed the region for years.

In 2007, the U.S. Treasury Department, under the presidency of George W. Bush, announced that the State Department had designated the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) nuclear weapon proliferators and that Treasury had designated the IRGC-Quds Force as providing material support to terrorist organizations.* Yet, it took President Trump, with his own man at State and a new Secretary of Defense, who was not invested in the past 20 years of Middle East policy consensus, to finally kill a terror chief who had been more effective than Osama Bin Laden. President Trump set the stage for this, and gave the Iranian regime and Major General Qassem Suleimani fair warning last April, when he designated the IRGC a Foreign Terrorist Organization.**

It is astonishing that we could actually pull off a targeted military strike, on the order of our assassination of Admiral Yamamoto, without the “policy consensus” Deep State leaking this one. It is a good sign that the actual intelligence operators and analysts and the military planners and operators are not leaking like their agency headquarters. Yamamoto? Yes, we carefully targeted the architect of the attack on Pearl Harbor and the most strategically brilliant Japanese military mind, intercepting and shooting down Yamamoto’s plane over Bougainville Island.

Killing General Suleimani is more significant than was killing Admiral Yamamoto, as Suleimani has been the strategic and operational leader of Iranian foreign operations for decades. Perhaps there is a lieutenant ready to pick up the general’s flag, but such talent is rare. At the same time, President Trump has shown a will and a capacity to employ targeted military strikes in addition to economic tools. The Iranian leadership was only expecting small strikes against other tactical targets, the same expectation that most observers, including me, shared.

The question to be answered in time is this: will the rocket blast that killed Suleimani be the butterfly wing that unleashes a political hurricane, sweeping President Trump out of the White House this November? Will he be seen by those tired of “endless wars” as having broken his promise and getting us into more war? The DNC certainly hopes so, and Secretary Pompeo has come out and plainly accused Democrats of subverting U.S. foreign policy by talking to the Iranian regime, urging them to hold on until after the U.S. election. The Iranian regime, the Chinese Communists, and Putin’s Russia all want the Democrats back in the White House, so we can expect them to try to influence our election season. In this time, would there be a “rally around the flag” effect for President Trump or would there be a Tet Offensive effect? President Trump seems mindful of the need to stick to his position on military intervention, while also showing strength at home and abroad.*** Time will tell, and the American voter will have the last word.


* Fact Sheet: Designation of Iranian Entities and Individuals for Proliferation Activities and Support for Terrorism, Oct. 25, 2007

The Treasury Department also designated the IRGC-Qods Force (IRGC-QF) under E.O. 13224 for providing material support to the Taliban and other terrorist organizations, and Iran’s state-owned Bank Saderat as a terrorist financier.

…E.O. 13224 is an authority aimed at freezing the assets of terrorists and their supporters, and at isolating them from the U.S. financial and commercial systems. Designations under the E.O. prohibit all transactions between the designees and any U.S. person, and freeze any assets the designees may have under U.S. jurisdiction.

IRGC-Qods Force (IRGC-QF): The Qods Force, a branch of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC; aka Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps), provides material support to the Taliban, Lebanese Hizballah, Hamas, Palestinian Islamic Jihad, and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine-General Command (PFLP-GC).

The Qods Force is the Iranian regime’s primary instrument for providing lethal support to the Taliban. The Qods Force provides weapons and financial support to the Taliban to support anti-U.S. and anti-Coalition activity in Afghanistan. Since at least 2006, Iran has arranged frequent shipments of small arms and associated ammunition, rocket propelled grenades, mortar rounds, 107mm rockets, plastic explosives, and probably man-portable defense systems to the Taliban. This support contravenes Chapter VII UN Security Council obligations. UN Security Council resolution 1267 established sanctions against the Taliban and UN Security Council resolutions 1333 and 1735 imposed arms embargoes against the Taliban. Through Qods Force material support to the Taliban, we believe Iran is seeking to inflict casualties on U.S. and NATO forces.

The Qods Force has had a long history of supporting Hizballah’s military, paramilitary, and terrorist activities, providing it with guidance, funding, weapons, intelligence, and logistical support. The Qods Force operates training camps for Hizballah in Lebanon’s Bekaa Valley and has reportedly trained more than 3,000 Hizballah fighters at IRGC training facilities in Iran. The Qods Force provides roughly $100 to $200 million in funding a year to Hizballah and has assisted Hizballah in rearming in violation of UN Security Council Resolution 1701.

In addition, the Qods Force provides lethal support in the form of weapons, training, funding, and guidance to select groups of Iraqi Shi’a militants who target and kill Coalition and Iraqi forces and innocent Iraqi civilians.

** Designation of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, April 8, 2019

The State Department intends to designate as a Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO) the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) in its entirety, including the Qods Force. This is a historic step to counter Iran-backed terrorism around the world.

  • On April 15, the IRGC will be added to the State Department’s FTO list, which includes 67 other terrorist organizations including Hizballah, Hamas, Palestinian Islamic Jihad, Kata’ib Hizballah, and al-Ashtar Brigades.
  • The IRGC FTO designation highlights that Iran is an outlaw regime that uses terrorism as a key tool of statecraft and that the IRGC, part of Iran’s official military, has engaged in terrorist activity or terrorism since its inception 40 years ago.
  • The IRGC has been directly involved in terrorist plotting; its support for terrorism is foundational and institutional, and it has killed U.S. citizens. It is also responsible for taking hostages and wrongfully detaining numerous U.S. persons, several of whom remain in captivity in Iran today.
  • The Iranian regime has made a clear choice not only to fund and equip, but also to fuel terrorism, violence, and unrest across the Middle East and around the world at the expense of its own people.
  • The Iranian regime is responsible for the deaths of at least 603 American service members in Iraq since 2003. This accounts for 17% of all deaths of U.S. personnel in Iraq from 2003 to 2011, and is in addition to the many thousands of Iraqis killed by the IRGC’s proxies.

…The IRGC, with the support of the Iranian government, has engaged in terrorist activity since its inception 40 years ago.

  • The IRGC—most prominently through its Qods Force—has the greatest role among Iran’s actors in directing and carrying out a global terrorist campaign.
  • In recent years, IRGC Qods Force terrorist planning has been uncovered and disrupted in many countries, including Germany, Bosnia, Bulgaria, Kenya, Bahrain, and Turkey.
  • The IRGC Qods Force in 2011 plotted a brazen terrorist attack against the Saudi Ambassador to the U.S. on American soil. Fortunately, this plot was foiled.
  • In September 2018, a U.S. federal court found Iran and the IRGC liable for the 1996 Khobar Towers bombing which killed 19 Americans.
  • In 2012, IRGC Qods Force operatives were arrested in Turkey for plotting an attack and in Kenya for planning a bombing.
  • In January 2018, Germany uncovered ten IRGC operatives involved in a terrorist plot in Germany, and convicted another IRGC operative for surveilling a German-Israeli group.
  • The IRGC continues to provide financial and other material support, training, technology transfer, advanced conventional weapons, guidance, or direction to a broad range of terrorist organizations, including Hizballah, Palestinian terrorist groups like Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad, Kata’ib Hizballah in Iraq, al-Ashtar Brigades in Bahrain, and other terrorist groups in Syria and around the Gulf.
  • In addition to its support of proxies and terrorist groups abroad, Iran also harbors terrorists within its own borders, thereby facilitating their activities. Iran continues to allow Al Qaeda (AQ) operatives to reside in Iran, where they have been able to move money and fighters to South Asia and Syria. In 2016, the U.S. Treasury Department identified and sanctioned three senior AQ operatives residing in Iran and noted that Iran had knowingly permitted these AQ members, including several of the 9/11 hijackers, to transit its territory on their way to Afghanistan for training and operational planning.

*** Remarks by President Trump on the Killing of Qasem Soleimani [emphasis added]

Issued on: January 3, 2020
Mar-a-Lago
Palm Beach, Florida

3:13 P.M. EST

THE PRESIDENT: Hello, everybody. Well, thank you very much. And good afternoon.

As President, my highest and most solemn duty is the defense of our nation and its citizens.

Last night, at my direction, the United States military successfully executed a flawless precision strike that killed the number-one terrorist anywhere in the world, Qasem Soleimani.

Soleimani was plotting imminent and sinister attacks on American diplomats and military personnel, but we caught him in the act and terminated him.

Under my leadership, America’s policy is unambiguous: To terrorists who harm or intend to harm any American, we will find you; we will eliminate you. We will always protect our diplomats, service members, all Americans, and our allies.

For years, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps and its ruthless Quds Force — under Soleimani’s leadership — has targeted, injured, and murdered hundreds of American civilians and servicemen.

The recent attacks on U.S. targets in Iraq, including rocket strikes that killed an American and injured four American servicemen very badly, as well as a violent assault on our embassy in Baghdad, were carried out at the direction of Soleimani.

Soleimani made the death of innocent people his sick passion, contributing to terrorist plots as far away as New Delhi and London.

Today we remember and honor the victims of Soleimani’s many atrocities, and we take comfort in knowing that his reign of terror is over.

Soleimani has been perpetrating acts of terror to destabilize the Middle East for the last 20 years. What the United States did yesterday should have been done long ago. A lot of lives would have been saved.

Just recently, Soleimani led the brutal repression of protestors in Iran, where more than a thousand innocent civilians were tortured and killed by their own government.

We took action last night to stop a war. We did not take action to start a war.

I have deep respect for the Iranian people. They are a remarkable people, with an incredible heritage and unlimited potential. We do not seek regime change. However, the Iranian regime’s aggression in the region, including the use of proxy fighters to destabilize its neighbors, must end, and it must end now.

The future belongs to the people of Iran — those who seek peaceful coexistence and cooperation — not the terrorist warlords who plunder their nation to finance bloodshed abroad.

The United States has the best military by far, anywhere in the world. We have best intelligence in the world. If Americans anywhere are threatened, we have all of those targets already fully identified, and I am ready and prepared to take whatever action is necessary. And that, in particular, refers to Iran.

Under my leadership, we have destroyed the ISIS territorial caliphate, and recently, American Special Operations Forces killed the terrorist leader known as al-Baghdadi. The world is a safer place without these monsters.

America will always pursue the interests of good people, great people, great souls, while seeking peace, harmony, and friendship with all of the nations of the world.

Thank you. God bless you. God bless our great military. And God bless the United States of America. Thank you very much. Thank you.

END

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  1. Clifford A. Brown Contributor
    Clifford A. Brown

    This conversation is part of our Group Writing Series under the January 2020 Group Writing Theme: Winter of Our Discontent. Share your tale of winter, discontent, content, or maybe tell us a tale of someone done wrong by an author or film maker. There are plenty of dates still available. Our schedule and sign-up sheet awaits.

    Interested in Group Writing topics that came before? See the handy compendium of monthly themes. Check out links in the Group Writing Group. You can also join the group to get a notification when a new monthly theme is posted.

    • #1
    • January 3, 2020, at 6:21 PM PST
    • Like
  2. RightAngles Member

    It was a great day!

    • #2
    • January 3, 2020, at 6:43 PM PST
    • 6 likes
  3. Mark Camp Member

    Clifford,

    This article is exceptional. I thank you very much. I’m a bit flabbergasted that a piece of this quality and thoroughness is appearing here in l’il ol’ Ricochet, and so soon after the event that is its subject, but I’m glad.

    • #3
    • January 3, 2020, at 6:50 PM PST
    • 8 likes
  4. CarolJoy, Above Top Secret Coolidge

    Ah yes, time will tell. I think Trump is right now riding a bit high. Public perception is on his side. More people are catching on. The inconsistencies of the liberals, the lack of decent appraisal of what needs to be done and how, stand forefront in the public’s perception.

    Six months and ten days ago, the Left’s leaders, as well as the National Security Council, took up as much air time as possible, chiding Trump for not pursuing a war against Iran. Now Trump has once again out foxed them, by achieving something that was needed. Smarty pants that he is, Trump blasted Soleimani into the next dimension, but without launching us into another 10 or 15 year quagmire. (Many of us true progressives felt that in Spring 2003, a truly functioning CIA could have made mincemeat out of Saddam Hussein in much the same way, but then Dick Cheney would not have had all those glorious Halliburton profits.)

    Almost on cue and as if the Dems could not be stupider, this week in California we are all finding out that the liberal Golden State, whose officials have always urged us to let in as many immigrants as wish to come here, as after all “we are a prosperous region with riches galore,” – that this Golden State will be limiting daily consumption of water to 55 gallons a day per individual, with a $ 1,000 a day fine if you go over that limit.

    So maybe the high Trump is riding will evaporate. Or maybe the people in a state of 42 million, whose electoral votes are substantial, will finally be slammed out of their stupor and realize that progressive ideals brought to life through totalitarian behavior should be knocked out for good at the polling places this November.

    • #4
    • January 3, 2020, at 7:03 PM PST
    • 2 likes
  5. RightAngles Member

    It kills me how many liberals are calling this “Trump’s Benghazi.” (But I thought Benghazi was no big deal!)

    • #5
    • January 3, 2020, at 7:18 PM PST
    • 7 likes
  6. Rodin Member

    With the reports of an attack tonight on the leader of one of the Iraqi militias that are sponsored by Iran, it appears that a campaign is being opened on Iraqi militias that are proxies for Iran — similar to the campaign against ISIS. 

    • #6
    • January 3, 2020, at 7:43 PM PST
    • 4 likes
  7. Clifford A. Brown Contributor
    Clifford A. Brown

    Rodin (View Comment):

    With the reports of an attack tonight on the leader of one of the Iraqi militias that are sponsored by Iran, it appears that a campaign is being opened on Iraqi militias that are proxies for Iran — similar to the campaign against ISIS.

    The Iraqi government’s problem is that it has been heavily infiltrated by the Iranian regime and has allowed the continued recognition of militias after the U.S.-led destruction of ISIS. So, there are Iraqi politicians and armed groups taking orders, pay, or other support from Teheran. I note that President Trump was very careful to say:

    I have deep respect for the Iranian people. They are a remarkable people, with an incredible heritage and unlimited potential. We do not seek regime change. However, the Iranian regime’s aggression in the region, including the use of proxy fighters to destabilize its neighbors, must end, and it must end now.

    The future belongs to the people of Iran — those who seek peaceful coexistence and cooperation — not the terrorist warlords who plunder their nation to finance bloodshed abroad.

    That last sentence is very interesting. “Terrorist warlords” presumably means the leaders of the IRGC and the Quds Force arm of the IRGC, since those were designated “FTO.” However, it is sufficiently vague to suggest some ayatollahs might want to get off of cell phones and start sleeping in different bunkers each night.

    Apparently Suleimani had a much larger set of attacks across the region planned, which is why we are now hearing about Army units alerted for Lebanon, then reading that the Navy units that were headed into the Mediterranean, with lots of Marines and their equipment aboard, have cancelled a planned stop at Morocco for joint exercises. I just posted a brief explanation.

    • #7
    • January 3, 2020, at 8:20 PM PST
    • 5 likes
  8. Mark Camp Member

    Clifford A. Brown (View Comment):
    That last sentence is very interesting. “Terrorist warlords” presumably means the leaders of the IRGC and the Quds Force arm of the IRGC, since those were designated “FTO.” However, it is sufficiently vague to suggest some ayatollahs might want to get off of cell phones and start sleeping in different bunkers each night.

    Great comment!

    Now, I suppose Mr. Trump’s critics will criticize him for making a vague policy pronouncement: our anti-Trump propagandists cannot be sure, based on the above sentence, exactly who among the leadership of Iran are safe and secure from American military decisions.

    And truly, it is a terribly frustrating thing for those left-wing journalists not to have a clear, reliable list of exactly what things the President will not do to the enemy.

    But it’s also a scary thing for the enemy.

    And that’s a good thing.

    • #8
    • January 4, 2020, at 11:29 AM PST
    • 3 likes
  9. CarolJoy, Above Top Secret Coolidge

    RightAngles (View Comment):

    It kills me how many liberals are calling this “Trump’s Benghazi.” (But I thought Benghazi was no big deal!)

    Over the last 2 months, on my twitter feed, I have learned from liberals that Trump is a monster for not supporting the progressive government of China over Hong Kong protesters, as well as his destroying the Workers’ Paradise of Venezuela. (Most people don’t get that Venezuela was a paradise, due to how Fox TV destroyed the many videos made by well fed, prosperous Venezuelans over the last three years.)

    Oh and Salon published an atheist’s lament that she could no longer celebrate Christmas at all, because there is no ability to feel even a shred of happiness in Trump’s Most Sinister Version of America.

    • #9
    • January 4, 2020, at 12:23 PM PST
    • 2 likes
  10. Django Member

    RightAngles (View Comment):

    It kills me how many liberals are calling this “Trump’s Benghazi.” (But I thought Benghazi was no big deal!)

    I got this from and ultra-liberal friend: “ incredible to me that not one Democrat contender seized the opportunity to differentiate him/herself from the rest of the pack by recognizing that this strike was virtually as important as Obama’s Bin Laden strike. “

    I guess being a liberal doesn’t automatically make one stupid. 

    • #10
    • January 4, 2020, at 2:42 PM PST
    • 3 likes
  11. Mark Camp Member

    Django (View Comment):

    RightAngles (View Comment):

    It kills me how many liberals are calling this “Trump’s Benghazi.” (But I thought Benghazi was no big deal!)

    I got this from and ultra-liberal friend: “ incredible to me that not one Democrat contender seized the opportunity to differentiate him/herself from the rest of the pack by recognizing that this strike was virtually as important as Obama’s Bin Laden strike.

    I guess being a liberal doesn’t automatically make one stupid.

    I daresay that no one on Ricochet is more liberal than I, and I emphatically agree. To the extent I’ve been made stupid,

    • it was by no means automatic, but required manual labor
    • nor was it being liberal that made me so

    But to be realistic, it’s unlikely that I was made stupid at all. On the contrary, I was born stupid (given some arbitrarily chosen reference points, though not all.)

    • #11
    • January 4, 2020, at 3:24 PM PST
    • 1 like
  12. Django Member

    Mark Camp (View Comment):

    Django (View Comment):

    RightAngles (View Comment):

    It kills me how many liberals are calling this “Trump’s Benghazi.” (But I thought Benghazi was no big deal!)

    I got this from and ultra-liberal friend: “ incredible to me that not one Democrat contender seized the opportunity to differentiate him/herself from the rest of the pack by recognizing that this strike was virtually as important as Obama’s Bin Laden strike.

    I guess being a liberal doesn’t automatically make one stupid.

    I daresay that no one on Ricochet is more liberal than I, and I emphatically agree. To the extent I’ve been made stupid,

    • it was by no means automatic, but required manual labor
    • nor was it being liberal that made me so

    But to be realistic, it’s unlikely that I was made stupid at all. On the contrary, I was born stupid (given some arbitrarily chosen reference points, though not all.)

    Someone wrote a post on this idea a couple years ago. What I have observed among CA liberals is what Orwell called “Crimestop”. 

    “Crimestop means the faculty of stopping short, as though by instinct, at the threshold of any dangerous thought. It includes the power of not grasping analogies, of failing to perceive logical errors, of misunderstanding the simplest arguments if they are inimical to [the state ideology], and of being bored or repelled by any train of thought which is capable of leading in a heretical direction. Crimestop, in short, means protective stupidity.”

    • #12
    • January 4, 2020, at 3:39 PM PST
    • 3 likes
  13. Mark Camp Member

    Django (View Comment):

    Mark Camp (View Comment):

    Django (View Comment):

    I guess being a liberal doesn’t automatically make one stupid.

    I daresay that no one on Ricochet is more liberal than I, and I emphatically agree. To the extent I’ve been made stupid,

    • it was by no means automatic, but required manual labor
    • nor was it being liberal that made me so

    But to be realistic, it’s unlikely that I was made stupid at all. On the contrary, I was born stupid (given some arbitrarily chosen reference points, though not all.)

    Someone wrote a post on this idea a couple years ago. What I have observed among CA liberals is what Orwell called “Crimestop”.

    “Crimestop means the faculty of stopping short, as though by instinct, at the threshold of any dangerous thought. It includes the power of not grasping analogies, of failing to perceive logical errors, of misunderstanding the simplest arguments if they are inimical to [the state ideology], and of being bored or repelled by any train of thought which is capable of leading in a heretical direction. Crimestop, in short, means protective stupidity.”

    Hm. Sounds perfectly anti-liberal to me.

     

    • #13
    • January 4, 2020, at 4:03 PM PST
    • 1 like
  14. Django Member

    Mark Camp (View Comment):

    Django (View Comment):

    Mark Camp (View Comment):

    Django (View Comment):

    I guess being a liberal doesn’t automatically make one stupid.

    I daresay that no one on Ricochet is more liberal than I, and I emphatically agree. To the extent I’ve been made stupid,

    • it was by no means automatic, but required manual labor
    • nor was it being liberal that made me so

    But to be realistic, it’s unlikely that I was made stupid at all. On the contrary, I was born stupid (given some arbitrarily chosen reference points, though not all.)

    Someone wrote a post on this idea a couple years ago. What I have observed among CA liberals is what Orwell called “Crimestop”.

    “Crimestop means the faculty of stopping short, as though by instinct, at the threshold of any dangerous thought. It includes the power of not grasping analogies, of failing to perceive logical errors, of misunderstanding the simplest arguments if they are inimical to [the state ideology], and of being bored or repelled by any train of thought which is capable of leading in a heretical direction. Crimestop, in short, means protective stupidity.”

    Hm. Sounds perfectly anti-liberal to me.

     

    I’m describing people I’ve met on the Left Coast who self-identify as liberals. They obviously are not what one could describe as “classical liberals”. 

    • #14
    • January 4, 2020, at 4:38 PM PST
    • 2 likes
  15. Clifford A. Brown Contributor
    Clifford A. Brown

    This 5 minute interview with General Petraeus confirms claims about Soleimani‘s influence. Petraeus refuses to criticize President Trump:

    Q: Would you have recommended this course of action right now?

    A: I’d hesitate to answer that just because I am not privy to the intelligence that was the foundation for the decision, which clearly was, as was announced, this was a defensive action, that Soleimani was going into the country to presumably approve further attacks. Without really being in the inner circle on that, I think it’s very difficult to either second-guess or to even think through what the recommendation might have been.

    Again, it is impossible to overstate the significance of this action. This is much more substantial than the killing of Osama bin Laden. It’s even more substantial than the killing of Baghdadi.

    • #15
    • January 4, 2020, at 4:45 PM PST
    • 1 like
  16. Clifford A. Brown Contributor
    Clifford A. Brown

    I call attention again to the fact that the supposed same national security/ intel/ diplomatic “interagency” that coughed up a Vindman and a gaggle of leakers of all agency stripes, kept this stunning decision, very bad for those who want to get back to the Obama Iran deal, absolutely secret.

    Or are there consequential, operational “interagency” circles and other circles of bureaucrats and political operators wearing the cover of the good and valuable service of others?

    • #16
    • January 4, 2020, at 4:53 PM PST
    • 3 likes
  17. Mark Camp Member

    Django (View Comment):
    I’m describing people I’ve met on the Left Coast who self-identify as liberals. They obviously are not what one could describe as “classical liberals”. 

    Yeah, I knew what you meant. I was just protesting what those Left Coasters are doing, in my own passive-aggressive* way. 

    *@She tells us that if we can’t do anything about a problem (like our civilization being strangled by malevolent sophists, using our own language, twisted into a garrote) we shouldn’t whine about it, passively-aggressively. Stiff upper lip and all that. But she herself just did it today, by her own admission. So I think I’m good here.

    • #17
    • January 4, 2020, at 5:18 PM PST
    • 3 likes