The long-awaited Ricochet Harvard Lunch Club mug is here!

Welcome to the Harvard Lunch Club Political Podcast for February 1, 2017, it’s the This is What the Trump Trap Looks Like  edition of the podcast. We are brought to you this week by Patriot Mobile. Do you want a portion of every dollar you pay for mobile phone service to go to left wing causes? That may be happening, but there is an answer: Patriot Mobile. And we are also brought to you by SimpliSafe. Protect your home the smart way without the expensive long-term contracts using Simply Safe home security. Visit Simply Safe-dot-com-slash-RICOCHET. That’s spelled S-I-M-P-L-I-S-A-F-E dot com slash Ricochet.

Giuliani on the Islamic State, Russia, and China


Shortly after reporting that Rudy Giuliani is on President-Elect Donald Trump’s shortlist for secretary of state, the WSJ asked him about how he would approach the Middle East and two of America’s most powerful rivals:

Mr. Giuliani suggested several times that he would be interested in the post, going into great detail about how he views foreign policy and how his views overlap with Mr. Trump’s. “ISIS, short-term I believe, is the greatest danger and not because ISIS is in Iraq and in Syria, but because ISIS did something al Qaeda never did—ISIS was able to spread itself around the world,” he said.

Member Post


I don’t recall which Ricochet Member first posted this, but in 2014 a little girl named Myriam was driven from her home in Qaraqosh in northern Iraq to live as a refugee in a former shopping mall in Erbil. The Middle East TV program SAT-7 Kids interviewed Myriam, and she expressed forgiveness for ISIS and […]

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The History of Mosul


I’ve never been to Mosul and so don’t have a good sense of what the city is really like. I thought, though, that the accounts I was reading of the battle to retake the city weren’t especially informative about the city’s history and significance. So I’ll try to offer some background, even though I’m not personally familiar with the city. I’m not an expert, and I may be mistaken about the details — so I’d welcome a bit of help from those of you who know the city’s history better.

mosulMosul, as you can see on the map to the right, is about 250 miles north of Baghdad. The old city was on the west bank of the Tigris, opposite the ancient city of Nineveh — the capital of the Assyrian empire, first mentioned in Genesis 10:11: “Ashur left that land, and built Nineveh.” Nineveh is part of modern-day Mosul.

The Battle for Mosul Begins


The offensive on Mosul is beginning. Over the weekend, US and French jets pounded ISIS positions east of Mosul and began shelling ISIS positions, paving the way for a ground offensive. This morning, Kurdish forces began advancing on villages east of the city.

Over the weekend, ISIS killed 53 people in three separate attacks in Iraq, including a suicide bombing in Baghdad. Conditions in Mosul are dire, and will no doubt get far worse; if Mosul is laid waste, another million and a half refugees will pour into the region and beyond. (It’s unclear what the population of Mosul is now; there were two million people there before it was captured by ISIS, but as many as a million have already fled.) 

Victor Davis Hanson explains why the waning months of Barack Obama’s presidency may turn out to be one of the most volatile periods for national security that America has seen in decades.

Peace in Our Time?


This is a preview from this morning’s The Daily Shot newsletter. Subscribe here free of charge.

On Friday in Geneva, John Kerry announced a ceasefire in Syria to take effect today at sundown. Wait, haven’t they done this before? Yeah, they tried in back in February, and it fell to pieces in a couple of weeks. A major part of this agreement stops the Syrian government from using its air force, which Kerry described as the “main driver of civilian casualties.”

The Thwarted Notre Dame Attack: A Question for our Experts


imagesYou may have heard that yet another terrorist attack was thwarted in France. Police were tipped off by the presence of a suspicious vehicle outside Notre Dame cathedral:

The group’s first attempted attack involved parking a Peugeot 607 car packed with gas cylinders near the cathedral in the heart of Paris and trying to blow it up. The car was also found to have contained diesel canisters and a barely-smoked cigarette had been thrown into the car near a canister with traces of hydrocarbons. Molins said the perpetrators had clearly tried to blow the car up and if they had succeeded it would have led to the explosion of the whole vehicle.

The car had no plates and was left with indicators flashing in a narrow alley. From the insurance sticker on the car, police traced it back to a father of five daughters originally from the Seine-Saint-Denis area north of Paris.

Kurdistan, Yezidis, and the Strange Consensus: A Report from an Iraq Correspondent


I received this report from a correspondent who asked for anonymity. “Given Ricochet’s educated readership,” he wrote, “perhaps they might enjoy this more detailed perspective” on Kurdistan and the KRG’s lobbyists in the West. I thought it was fascinating. If you have questions about it, I’ll be happy to post his replies.


Welcome to the Harvard Lunch Club podcast for August 16, 2016 – It’s the Jeff Sessions Interview edition of the podcast in which we go in depth with the 19 year senate veteran from Alabama and discuss his role as an occasional advisor to Donald Trump, his strong stand against amnesty, his appearance on Sunday’s This Week from ABC News that was a “Trump is Dead” broadcast, and he compliments the HLC podcast relentlessly.

Then, we discuss the Trump “Obama Invented Isis” story. Was it really so bad?

Orgy of Guilt

Mohamed Bailor Jalloh (Photo credit: Facebook)

The Islamic State, you have to acknowledge, is on quite a roll. Over the July 4th weekend, the FBI arrested a northern Virginia neighbor of mine, Mohamed Bailor Jalloh. He was apparently plotting a Fort Hood style attack and told an FBI informant: “I just want to live a good Muslim life and die as a Shaheed [martyr].”

Member Post


As additional information comes in about the despicable killer in Orlando, the complexity of the story continues to grow. Was the man a self-hating gay? Was he genuinely radicalized by ISIS, or was he simply in love with the thought of using his religion as an excuse for a killing spree? Did authorities who cleared […]

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Member Post


I heard a story on the news this morning, about a horrible atrocity; the sort of gut-churning brutality that normally gets splashy news coverage just because “it bleeds.” I was listening to the radio on my way to work, so when I got there I did a quick internet search. Sure enough, as I had […]

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This is a members-only post on Ricochet's Member Feed. Want to read it? Join Ricochet’s community of conservatives and be part of the conversation. Get your first month free.