Archive for the ‘National Security’ Category
They say that politics makes for strange bedfellows. It doesn’t get stranger than President Obama commuting the sentence of Chelsea Manning. It’s unforgivable for President Obama to commute the sentence of the soldier “who was convicted of stealing and disseminating 750,000 pages of documents and videos to WikiLeaks.”
This is further proof that President Obama is the worst national security president of my lifetime by orders of magnitude. He’s worse than Jimmy Carter, which is something I didn’t think I’d ever say.
President Obama has rightfully criticized Russian President Putin for hacking into the Democratic National Committee’s computers, though the DNC pretty much left them unprotected. What’s puzzling (and infuriating) about his commuting 28 years (80%) of Manning’s sentence is that Manning’s actions caused the death of American soldiers and intelligence assets.
What’s especially chilling is that President Obama “overruled his secretary of defense to commute the sentence of former Army soldier Chelsea Manning.” President Obama commuted the sentence of a soldier who got American soldiers killed. It doesn’t get more pathetic than that.
President Obama’s commutation of Manning’s sentence is proof that his priorities and thinking aren’t right. Thank God he’s almost irrelevant. The biggest question left is how much more damage he can do to America’s national security in his hours left.
This article highlights what Manning did:
Diplomats are like journalists, doctors and lawyers: their jobs depend on the trust and confidentiality of those with whom they speak. As the US military engages increasingly in civil affairs, soldiers are not much different.
Manning not only burned the sources of hundreds of diplomats, but she effectively dissuaded foreigners from trusting any future American official. The exposure may also have cost lives: Both al Qaeda and the Taliban combed through documents to identify those cooperating with the United States.
This sums her up perfectly:
Make no mistake: Manning was neither an altruistic liberal nor free-speech warrior: She was a narcissist and would-be tyrant who believed rules did not apply to her. She was not motivated by a desire to expose wrongdoing, for she ignored channels used by generations of whistleblowers and instead sought the wholesale exposure of government secrets.
This is what a traitor looks like:
Let’s take a moment to appreciate the fact that Democrats are coming unhinged at the things Donald Trump is doing. This op-ed, written by Sen. Dianne Feinstein, (D-Calif.), and Sen. Ben Cardin, (D-MD), is a perfect example of how Democrats are coming unhinged.
It’s apparent that they’re unhinged when they write “Second, Trump is treating the secretary of State nomination like a reality television show. When it comes to the selection of our nation’s chief diplomat, we expect Trump to nominate someone who possesses unquestioned expertise, experience and judgment — not a political loyalist or ideological firebrand, characteristics of many of the individuals already surrounding the president-elect.”
What a pair of hypocrites. I didn’t hear a peep from either of these liberals when President Obama packed the NLRB with ideological firebrands. They certainly didn’t participate in the NLRB v. Noel Canning lawsuit that was brought because President Obama decided to declare when the Senate was in session. The Supreme Court’s 9-0 ruling against President Obama in that lawsuit is proof that President Obama didn’t hesitate in playing the part of ideological firebrand. Again, Sen. Feinstein and Sen. Cardin didn’t utter a peep.
Further, I’d love hearing Sen. Feinstein and Sen. Cardin explain how President Obama didn’t surround himself with “political loyalists” when he brought in Rahm Emanuel, Valerie Jarrett, Anita Dunn and David Axelrod.
Then there’s this:
Finally, we have been alarmed by the cavalier manner in which the president-elect appears to be approaching his initial interactions with foreign heads of state and other political leaders, potentially setting the stage for multiple diplomatic crises that could easily escalate.
In his calls with foreign leaders, President-elect Trump has unnerved our partners, raised questions about U.S. commitments and even reportedly expressed tacit support for extrajudicial killings. Moreover, in preparing for these conversations he has ignored experts in U.S. intelligence agencies and the State Department.
Again, Sen. Feinstein didn’t criticize President Obama for saying he wouldn’t put pre-conditions on calling Iran, then and still the largest state sponsor of terrorism. Is Sen. Feinstein ignorant of how that raised questions about the Obama administration’s support of Israel, Egypt and Saudi Arabia? More than a few of President Obama’s decisions escalated into international crises. Where was Sen. Feinstein then?
Technorati: Dianne Feinstein, Ben Cardin, Barack Obama, NLRB v. Noel Canning, David Axelrod, Valerie Jarrett, Rahm Emanuel, National Security, Arab Spring, Democrats Unhinged, Democrats, Donald Trump, One China Policy, Republicans
This article reports that Donald Trump has asked Sen. Jeff Sessions, (R-AL), to be his attorney general. The report’s opening paragraph states “President-elect Trump has decided he wants Alabama Sen. Jeff Sessions to be his attorney general in his new administration, according to multiple reports.” The next paragraph reports that CBS News first reported it in this article.
CBS is reporting that the “choice of Sessions to be the nation’s top prosecutor is sure to be controversial. Sessions has been one of Mr. Trump’s closest and most consistent allies. But when Sessions faced Senate confirmation for a job 30 years ago, it didn’t go well.”
Democrats have to pick their fights wisely so it isn’t a foregone conclusion that they’ll give Sen. Sessions a difficult time. If they object too vehemently, Republicans could make the Democrats’ life in the minority for the next 4 years (and probably longer) difficult. New incoming Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer might want to save his political capital for a fight he’s got a chance of winning. Sen. Schumer has to know that Sen. Sessions is someone that President Trump would fight for. History isn’t filled with incoming presidents not getting their national security picks confirmed.
This NY Times article highlights the fact that liberals haven’t come to grips with the fact that the nation rejected President Obama’s agenda this past Tuesday night.
Dan Pfeiffer, a senior advisor to President Obama, said “It was not a rejection of Obama or Obama-ism. It was probably more about the two candidates running in this election.” It’s indisputable that Hillary wasn’t a good candidate. Still, this isn’t an either-or situation. Just like FBI Director Jim Comey didn’t lose this election for Hillary, it’s equally true that President Obama’s policies tied a millstone around Hillary’s neck, too.
Obamacare was something that Mrs. Clinton couldn’t avoid. With premiums skyrocketing right before the election, Hillary was essentially silent. Unfortunately for Mrs. Clinton, Bill Clinton and Gov. Dayton criticized the ACA right before the election. From that point forward, Mrs. Clinton was trapped in an impossible situation. From that point forward, President Obama’s signature achievement was attacked. It will be largely dismantled, which is good news for families because it’s hurt more people than it’s helped.
President Obama’s aides are citing President Obama’s accomplishments:
Moreover, although Mr. Obama said that all of his progress would go “out the window,” advisers now argue the opposite: that many accomplishments cannot be overturned. He will be remembered, they said, for pulling the country out of the Great Recession, saving the auto industry, bringing home most troops fighting overseas, killing Osama bin Laden, enacting higher fuel efficiency standards and restoring relations with Cuba.
Killing bin Laden was something big that he’ll deservedly get credit for. I don’t think he’ll get credit for pulling the nation out of the Great Recession, though. TARP was enacted before the 2008 election. That pulled us out of the Great Recession. Further, Obamanomics never worked that well. Economic growth has been anemic for 8 years. (It’s difficult to claim that President Obama pulled us out of the Great Recession when economic growth was virtually nonexistent for 8 years.
It’s difficult, if not impossible, to say that President Obama pulled us out of the Great Recession when voters elected Donald Trump. Trump specifically ran on a program that’s intent on reversing most of President Obama’s economic agenda. Trump plans on enacting tax reform, including the lowering of marginal tax rates, regulatory reform that’s killing the energy industry and repealing the ACA. I’m betting that this talking point will disappear once those things are enacted and the economy starts growing at a robust clip.
Bringing the troops home is something President Obama’s political base will appreciate but I don’t think the nation at-large agrees. They won’t agree because the price of bringing the troops home was the rise of ISIS.
This is President Obama from Fantasyland sounds like:
“When I think about the polarization that occurred in 2009 and 2010, I’ve gone back and I’ve looked at my proposals and my speeches and the steps we took to reach out to Congress,” he told the historian Doris Kearns Goodwin in a pre-election conversation published by Vanity Fair. “And the notion that we weren’t engaging Congress or that we were overly partisan or we didn’t schmooze enough, or we didn’t reach out enough to Republicans — that whole narrative just isn’t true.”
First, Speaker Boehner didn’t reject President Obama’s stimulus plan out of hand. Second, it was President Obama that rejected the Republicans’ ideas without giving them serious consideration. He told Eric Cantor that “elections have consequences. You lost.”
When his policies get dismantled, which is inevitable, he’ll have nobody but himself, Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi to blame.
Saying that this election isn’t like most elections is understatement on steroids. I thought I’d seen everything but I haven’t. Piers Morgan’s op-ed is spot on, which is something that I never thought I’d say.
Then again, I didn’t think I’d hear Piers Morgan say “Yet despite this unprecedented bombardment of mainstream abuse, Trump’s poll numbers keep rising and his chances of becoming President keep increasing. The reason, to me, is obvious: tens of millions of Americans just don’t agree with that withering verdict. They think Trump’s a fiery, flamboyant, super-rich, shoot-from-the-hip buccaneer on a mission to make America great again. They agree with him about illegal immigration, about big Government corruption, about Wall Street greed, about ‘crooked’ Hillary Clinton and most pertinently, about the threat of Islamic terrorism.”
This is an election of opposing factions. That’s indisputable in my estimation. One faction a) is complacent, b) believes in the status quo and c) thinks we’re in a narrative fight with ISIS:
It’s frightening to think that there’s videotape proof that the White House Press Secretary actually said it’s a narrative war and that we’re winning that fight. What’s almost as frightening is that the DC media criticized Donald Trump for calling the bomb that went off in New York City a bomb. What’s almost as frightening is that they didn’t post a single tweet when Mrs. Clinton also called Saturday night’s attack in New York City a bombing.
The reason why people are warming up to Mr. Trump is because he isn’t afraid to call a pressure cooker bomb explosion a bombing. Millennials immediately identified that pressure cooker bomb as a bomb. Then they saw Mrs. Clinton tap dance her way through her solution. I can picture millennials scratching their heads when they heard Mrs. Clinton say “We should also launch an intelligence surge to help identify and thwart attacks before they can be carried out.”
Meanwhile, Trump isn’t afraid to take a little heat to tell people that we can’t keep importing terrorists through the State Department’s refugee resettlement program. It’s like the first rule of holes; if you’re in one, stop digging.
We know that there are refugees here who have gotten radicalized. We know this because, in Minnesota, 3 Somali refugees were convicted of “ISIS-related terrorism charges.” Another 6 Somali refugees accepted plea deals on essentially the same charges.
With acts of terrorism accelerating both internationally and here at home, it isn’t surprising that people are flocking to Donald Trump. They don’t agree with all of Trump’s solutions but they definitely appreciate the fact that he’s willing to call a terrorist attack a terrorist attack, a terrorist a terrorist and an exploded pressure cooker bomb a bombing.
This is where Morgan delivered the kill shot to Mrs. Clinton:
But what neither she nor Obama offers the American people is any kind of plan to combat such attacks. They talk of how awful it all is, but studiously avoid advocating any real action for fear of upsetting or offending people.
The President doesn’t even like using the phrase ‘Islamic terrorism’, which is utterly absurd given that’s plainly what it is. In the face of such apparently weak, insipid, mealy-mouthed and frankly meaningless rhetoric, it’s hardly surprising that Trump emerges as a non-PC, no-nonsense voice of reason to many Americans.
Another way of putting it is that Americans want a leader. Mrs. Clinton isn’t a leader. She’s too cautious to be a leader.
The thing that’s selling Trump to the American people is that he’s speaking their language to them. He isn’t tap-dancing his way through a politically correct word salad to not offend someone. If Trump wins, something that’s still in doubt, I think it’ll be because the American people chose a leader.
Technorati: Piers Morgan, Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, Josh Earnest, Political Correctness, Word Salad, Refugee Resettlement Program, State Department, Democrats, Donald Trump, Millennials, National Security, Leadership, Republicans, Election 2016
The other night at NBC’s Commander-in-Chief Forum, Hillary Clinton potentially offered a glimpse of her debate performances. She potentially offered that glimpse by twisting herself into a pretzel. HRC is prone to that because she’s caught in an impossible situation. She’s caught in an impossible situation because she’s gotten caught lying about sending and receiving classified emails on her private email server.
The impossible situation started with a question that went like this “As a naval officer, I held a top secret, sensitive compartmentalized information clearance and that provided me access to materials and information that was highly sensitive to our war-fighting capabilities. Had I communicated this information not following prescribed protocols, I would have been prosecuted and imprisoned. Secretary Clinton, how can you expect those such as myself who were and are trusted with America’s most sensitive information to have any confidence in your leadership as president when you clearly corrupted our national security?”
Predictably, Mrs. Clinton started her oratorical gyrations, saying “Well I appreciate your concern and also your experience, but let me try to make the distinctions that I think are important for me to answer your question. First, as I said to Matt, you know and I know, classified material is designated. … And what we have here is the use of an unclassified system by hundreds of people in our government to send information that was not marked, there were no headers, there was no statement top secret, secret, or confidential. I communicated about classified material on a wholly separate system. I took it very seriously.”
Mrs. Clinton should consider herself fortunate because she lied with that reply. Classified material is supposed to be protected whether it’s got the markings on it or not. Also, we know from Jim Comey’s testimony that there were emails on Hillary’s server that contained classified material. It’s possible that Mrs. Clinton occasionally used “a wholly separate system” to communicate classified materials but she certainly didn’t use that separate system consistently, much less all the time.
Because she’s caught in that impossible position of defending the indefensible, there’s a high probability that she’ll corkscrew herself into the ground in the debates. Those are the types of replies that might create an election-shifting moment.
This morning, Kellyanne Conway tweeted a link to this article about how Hillary is trying to shift to a more positive-sounding stump speech. The article re-exposes HRC as a liar who’ll say anything to get elected.
For instance, HRC told a black church “that she believes they deserve better than politicians ‘who think they can just show up at election time, say a few nice words and then earn your support.'” Presumably, she wasn’t talking about Democrats, who consistently show up at black churches in October of election years, then disappear for the next 22-23 months.
Democrats show up at black churches preaching that we’re our brothers’ and our sisters’ keepers, which is true. The question I’d pepper HRC with, though, is ‘Hillary, what type of Christian lies about what the law is on sending classified and top secret information? Why do you insist that it’s the markings on the documents that make them confidential or top secret? You were told when you joined the Senate Armed Services Committee that the content determined whether the information was confidential or top secret. Do you really expect us to believe that you’re a Godly lady when you’ve repeatedly lied about the emails and how many mobile devices you had. Hillary, did Christ teach us to lie to the families of murdered American patriots?’
The truth is that HRC knows that she isn’t liked and never will be liked. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure it out that she’s saying these things to soften her image. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that she’s been around too long to change her image. For the better part of a generation, large numbers of people, from across the political spectrum, have thought of her as a cold-hearted bitch driven by her quest for power. This is the quintessential Hillary:
She even looks like a cold-hearted bitch.
When Hillary Clinton talks about US national security, people listen. It isn’t that they think she’ll tell the truth. HRC’s honest and trustworthy ratings are worse than an ant’s popularity rating at a mid-summer picnic. Some people will listen to hear what absurd lies she’ll tell. Others will listen so they’ll know what she said once Lanny Davis and other Clinton spinmeisters appear on TV to tell us that she didn’t say what everyone watched HRC say.
Those are probably the good old days. Now, the DFL and other Hillary enablers don’t wait until after she’s gotten caught lying. They’re proactive, telling us nonsense prior to her lying to us. This tweet is a perfect example of Democrats being proactive so they can change the subject once a moderator asks about HRC’s statements. The DFL tweeted “When @HillaryClinton talks about keeping our country safe, she means it.”
After visiting HRC’s website, I feel safe. That’s where I read this comforting thought:
The threat we face from terrorism is real, urgent, and knows no boundaries. Horrific attacks like the ones in Paris, Brussels, Orlando, and San Bernardino have made it all too clear: It is not enough to contain ISIS and the threat of radical jihadism—we have to defeat it.
That’s the hard-hitting policy that we need. I feel safer already. Well, I’d feel safer if it wasn’t for this:
On NBC’s Meet the Press, moderator Chuck Todd asked Pence about Trump’s policies to ban Muslims from entering the United States. In recent weeks, Trump has said he would ban Muslims from countries with terrorist activity.
When Todd pressed Pence about what countries those would be, Pence changed the subject to Clinton’s Syria policy. “Well, Hillary Clinton wants to increase Syrian refugees to this country by 550 percent,” Pence said. “Donald Trump and I believe that we should suspend the Syrian refugee program.”
It doesn’t make sense to take out ISIS hotspots in Syria, Iraq and Europe, then invite potential ISIS terrorists to the US through our refugee resettlement program. Despite what Pat Kessler reported, it’s still highly possible for ISIS terrorists to infiltrate the US through the refugee resettlement program.
Hillary’s plan to protect the US from ISIS terrorist attacks is essentially killing terrorists in Iraq and Syria while inviting new terrorists into the US. Killing terrorists there, then increasing the number of potential terrorists in the US seems slightly counterproductive. Then again, how can people feel safe watching video like this?
Technorati: Hillary Clinton, National Security, ISIS, Refugee Resettlement Program, Terrorist Attacks, Pat Kessler, Reality Check, DFL, Democrats, Election 2016
It isn’t difficult to find articles telling us that the presidential race is essentially finished and that Hillary will be our next president. Thus far, what’s evident is that Mr. Trump has righted himself to a certain extent. That’s mostly attributable to hiring Kellyanne Conway. She’s brought a focus to the campaign that’s been quite noticeable.
The other thing that’s led to this tightening is how pathetic Hillary has looked. I’m reminded of an old song that they played on Hee Haw. The song said “if it weren’t for bad luck, I’d have no luck at all.” While I can’t attribute HRC’s fall to bad luck, I’ll certainly attribute her fall to bad news cycle after bad news cycle. Charles Krauthammer put it perfectly, stating “Look, I don’t think this is really complicated. She’s been in the news. It’s all been bad since the Comey press conference. Every bit of news is always about emails, about the Clinton Foundation, the corruption. That’s the only news we are getting. Of course, it’s her numbers that are declining. Trump has been up and down but he’s been relatively stable and that’s why we are where we are today.”
It’s still far too early to predict anyone as the victor. It’s definitely too early to predict that for Trump, especially, though, because it isn’t clear that he’s passed the commander-in-chief test. If Mr. Trump passes that test relatively soon, then the race will take a different perspective. At that point, if it happens, Trump will become a fully plausible candidate.
Finally, it’s foolish to count on this stretch of terrible news cycles to propel Mr. Trump to victory — yet. It isn’t foolish to think that Hillary isn’t capable to performing terribly. Just remember Hillary’s disastrous book tour a couple years ago.
And now, those words from Charles:
Technorati: Hillary Clinton, Clinton Emails, Clinton Foundation, James Comey, Honest and Trustworthy, Democrats, Donald Trump, Kellyanne Conway, Republicans, Election 2016
Republicans should willingly accept the fight that the Democrats have picked on defense spending. Democrats just picked the fight by filibustering the bill that would fund the military, including funding overseas operations against ISIS. If Democrats are willing to shut down the government over fulfilling the Democrats’ special interest allies’ wish list, Republicans should highlight that. If Democrats want to commit political suicide, then it’s Republicans’ responsibility to make them pay for that stupidity.
First, it’s important to know that “Senate Democrats Tuesday blocked for a third time a key defense spending bill, signaling they will not take up any spending legislation outside of an all-inclusive package that incorporates both military and domestic spending.” According to the article, Democrats blocked the bill because “Democratic leaders said they don’t trust the GOP to negotiate in good faith on the remaining domestic spending bills if they agree to the military spending separately.”
It’s time for Democrats to put on their big boy britches and negotiate in good faith. If they won’t fund the military unless they get everything they want for their special interest allies, then they aren’t fit to chair the Senate’s committees. Period. They aren’t fit for those responsibilities because they’re too beholden to the special interests to do what’s right for America.
Sen. Rubio issued this statement:
The federal government’s chief responsibility is to keep Americans safe and provide the resources our military needs to do its job, and it’s a shame Senate Democrats are refusing to do either by blocking this bill for the third time this year.
In addition to funding our military, this bill would also have made it crystal clear to the administration that dangerous terrorists must remain at the detention facility in Guantanamo Bay. In these last four months of President Obama’s term, we need to do everything possible to stop him from releasing dangerous terrorists to other countries, or bringing them into the U.S. This includes keeping the 18 “forever prisoners“, which an independent board has deemed too dangerous to ever release, right where they are.
This is a fight that Republicans should fight with Democrats. Let the people see that Democrats aren’t ready to chair the important committees that fund this nation’s national security operations. Let the people see that Democrats consistently put a higher priority on political gamesmanship than they put on doing what’s right for our troops.