American Elephants


Trump Buries The Old-World Order by The Elephant's Child

Victor Davis Hanson had a new column up yesterday at the Hoover Institution’s “Defining Ideas” in which he explains our history in statecraft and diplomacy, and what he calls the Old-World Order, since the end of the Second World War, He explains how we got here and where we are today, and what the Trump administration is doing about it. It’s not long and I found it fascinating to have it all put together so concisely.

The present continuance of institutions such as the EU, NATO, UN, and others suggests that the world goes on exactly as before. In fact, these alphabet organizations are becoming shadows of their former selves, more trouble to end than to allow to grow irrelevant. The conditions that created them after the end of World War II, and subsequently sustained them even after the fall of the Berlin Wall, no longer really exist.

The once grand bipartisan visions of American diplomats such as Dean Acheson, George Kennan, George Marshall and others long ago more than fulfilled their enlightened promises. The U.S. in 1945, unlike in 1918, rightly stayed engaged in Europe after another world war. America helped to rebuild what the old Axis powers had destroyed in Asia and Europe.

At great cost, and at times in both folly and wisdom, the U.S. and its allies faced down 300 Soviet and Warsaw Pact divisions. America contained communist aggression through messy surrogate wars, avoided a nuclear exchange, bankrupted an evil communist empire, and gave Eastern Europe and much of Asia the opportunity for self-determination. New postwar protocols enforced by the U.S. Navy made the idea of global free trade, commerce, travel, and communications a reality in a way never seen since the early Roman Empire.

Do read the whole thing, you’ll be glad you did.

Advertisements


A Study Reveals That 72 Terrorists Came From the Countries In Trump’s Travel Ban by The Elephant's Child

Trumpsigns-1

On January 27, 2017, President Trump issued Executive Order 13769 which banned travel from seven countries, largely Muslim in population, that supported terrorism. Well! Huge Liberal outcry. He Can’t Do That! Lawsuits,! Liberal judges said no. Trump accused of racism, cruelty, etc., etc. Ninth Circuit judges said there is no evidence showing a risk to the United States in allowing aliens from these seven terror-associated countries to come in. Case went to Supreme Court.  June 26, Supreme Court upholds ban. You probably remember all of this. It was very noisy. But eventually we find out what it was all about.

Jessica Vaughn from the Center for Immigration Studies (cis.org) reported on a review of information compiled by a Senate committee in 2016 reveals that 72 individuals from the seven countries covered in President Trump’s vetting order have been convicted in terror cases since the 9/11 attacks. These facts stand is stark contrast to the assertions by the Ninth circuit judges who blocked the president’s order on the basis that there was no evidence.

In June 2016 the Senate Subcommittee on Immigration and the National Interest, then chaired by now Attorney General Jeff Sessions, released a report on individuals convicted in terror cases since 9/11. The Obama administration refused to provide government records, so this came from open sources. The report found that 380 our of 500 people convicted in terror cases were foreign born.

The CIS center has obtained a copy of the information compiled by the Senate subcommittee. The report contains names of offenders, dates of conviction, terror group affiliation, federal criminal charges, sentence imposed, state of residence and immigration history.  72 of the individuals named in the Senate report, country of origin was one of the seven countries included in the vetting order.
• Somalia: 20  • Yemen: 18  • Iraq: 19  • Syria: 7 • Iran: 4  • Libya: 2  • Sudan 1

•Total 72

These immigrant terrorists lived in at least 16 different states, with the largest number from the terror-associated countries living in New York (10), Minnesota (8), California (8), and Michigan (6). Ironically, Minnesota was one of the states suing to block Trump’s order to pause entries from the terror-associated countries, claiming it harmed the state. At least two of the terrorists were living in Washington, which joined with Minnesota in the lawsuit to block the order.

Thirty-three of the 72 individuals from the seven terror-associated countries were convicted of very serious terror-related crimes, and were sentenced to at least three years imprisonment. The crimes included use of a weapon of mass destruction, conspiracy to commit a terror act, material support of a terrorist or terror group, international money laundering conspiracy, possession of explosives or missiles, and unlawful possession of a machine gun.

It’s the usual story. Big outcry from the Left. Liberals don’t know what they are talking about, they just object. When they are proven wrong, or make big mistakes, it just all vanishes down the memory hole.



Sometimes You Have To Deal With Hard Questions by The Elephant's Child

GettyImages-56751036-420x315

America, we have a problem. It is mostly a problem of definitions. Defining words and what they mean. Former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright has gone to Britain to badmouth the United States of America. She slammed U.S. efforts to secure the border and told the BBC that the immigration policies of President Donald J. Trump “makes it very hard for America to tell Europeans what to do if we can’t figure out how to be more humane ourselves.”

One would expect more from a former Secretary of State. Sorry, Mrs. Albright, We cannot open the borders of the country to everyone who might wish to come. Europe is slowly coming to the same realization. The problem is with words ( and the understanding of words) like “humane,””empathy.” “compassion,” “charity,” “mercy.” Above all, it is a misunderstanding of radical Islam. It is easy to babble on about generosity and fellow-feeling, but laws require specifics.

It is not “compassionate” to suggest that we should open the borders to all the 7+ billion people of the world. Oh, you didn’t mean that? Then specifically how many do you think we can admit without creating hardship and death for current American citizens? Potential immigrants are not all nice people. The 1st duty of the federal government is to protect American citizens.

Angela Merkel is backtracking as fast as she can to save her administration, by putting some restriction on immigration. She agreed to set up “transit camps for migrants at the border, and to eventually turn some of them away,” Now she’s got to convince Austria and Hungary who “must agree to take back some of the migrants in order to satisfy the Bavarian partners in her own government.”

Observers (like us) read the news of rapes, murders, child sexual grooming, attacks on citizens, bombs and knife attacks, and acknowledge that it means the Suicide of Europe.  Under current situations, Europe will be Islamic not too far in the future.

We are confronted with a religion —Islam—that in its purest form, demands that its adherents kill anyone who does not submit.  Did you miss the pictures of our journalists being beheaded? Apparently Kathy Griffin did. Protesters in Iran risk being put to death for their apostasy.  Islam— demands that homosexuals be thrown to their death from tall buildings or off cliffs, or anyone that seems to not be obedient. They are also fond of stoning unbelievers or those who have strayed in some way.

America was settled by immigrants fleeing the religious wars of Europe, and searching for somewhere where they could have freedom of religion. Even today our Supreme Court is regularly deciding questions about freedom of religion. Democrats are expressing horror at the possibility that a potential judicial nominee might be Catholic and not favor abortion.

This is a different question than the simple idea of freedom of religion, and nobody wants to face up to hard questions. There are people like Ayan Hirsi Ali who have escaped (literally) from Islam. There are many people who have explained the Moslem religion, and too many who parrot the phrase “Islam is a religion of Peace” without understanding. Our Reformation was so long ago (1517-1648) that the word is now being used for a new line of women’s clothes.  Cute.  And the office of Secretary of State is used to get former opponents out of the way.



The Future is Coming Whether We Welcome It Or Not by The Elephant's Child

My mail contained some startling notices. In the Netherlands, in  the city of Eindhoven, they are building a neighborhood of 3D printed houses. I saw pictures of a house they 3D printed here at a cost of around $3,600 (If I remember correctly) that looked attractive and like a normal house only very small. A whole new concept of neighborhoods and living. This one looks as if it was designed for migrants from a children’s book. Kids would love them. You can google 3D houses to see what’s being developed in this country.

Thinking about D-Day, I couldn’t help but wonder if we are going to have to do it again. The EU Government seems to think it will all go well as the migrants adapt and become Europeans. The Migrants seem to have no intention of assimilating, and just expect to take over in a generation or two, when they become the majority. Whether they want to eliminate the current Europeans is an unknown, but attacks seem to continue everywhere. The thinking of the EU government seems to have little to do with the ideas and interests of the people, with rare exceptions. See Victor Davis Hanson’s “Europe’s Vanishing Calm” at National Review.

It’s  now against the law in California to shower and do laundry in the same day. The Outgoing Governor Jerry Brown wants a few draconian laws passed as a parting gift to the state. This one is designed to help California to be prepared for future droughts and, of course, to help defray the effects of climate change. Governor Moonbeam remains a true believer. The mandatory water conservation standards will be permanent, not just in times of crisis.

But at the EPA, the valiant Scott Pruitt is doing some genuine cost-benefit reform. Barack Obama’s Environmental Protection Agency rammed through an average of 565 new rules each year during the Obama Presidency, imposing the highest regulatory costs of any agency in the government. It pulled this off by arranging the supposed benefits to fit whatever cost they thought they could get away with. Regulations can impose severe costs on the economy. By adding “social costs” and “social benefits” Obama’s EPA added speculation about causing childhood asthma (scientists don’t know yet what causes it) which sounds good, and is hard to object to. Removing useless regulations has been a boon to commerce. The EPA has a statutory obligation to look at the costs and benefits of proposed rules, which were reinforced by executive orders and court rulings.

The EPA will take the first step today by issuing an advance notice of proposed rule-making. After weighing public input, EPA will propose a rule establishing an agency-wide standard for how regulations are assessed. The reform will make it easier for Americans and their elected representatives to see whether more regulation can be justified. At White House direction, the Trump EPA recalculated the “social cost” of prior regulations to include only demonstrable domestic benefits. The social cost estimates dropped to an average of $5 per ton of carbon from $36. The EPA had put the social cost of methane at an average of $1,100 per ton. The Trump EPA lowered that to $150 per ton. As they say, $1,000 here, and $2,000 there and pretty soon you’re talking real money. On his first day in office Mr. Pruitt said his goal was to protect the environment and the economy, and that “we don’t have to choose between the two.”

 



Here’s What Obama Had to Say About The Iran Deal Back Then by The Elephant's Child

LV_20131029_LV_FOTOS_D_54392535175-992x558@LaVanguardia-Web

I was looking in an old notebook, and ran across a couple of quotes I had jotted down from President Obama about the Iran Deal: I won’t testify as to their accuracy, as it’s clear I was scribbling fast. I can hardly read my writing.

“It shows what we can accomplish when we lead from a position of strength, and a position of principle. When we unite the international community around a shared vision, and we resolve to solve problems peacefully.”

Well, that sounds like Obama, doesn’t it? I can’t remember who it was who described him as “a real good talker.”

“With this deal, we cut off every single one of Iran’s pathways to a nuclear weapons program, and Iran’s nuclear program will be under severe limits for many years.  Without a deal these pathways remain open, there would be no limits on Iran’s nuclear program, and Iran could move closer to a nuclear bomb.”

Sounds like Obama alright. That worked out well.



President Trump Disposed of The Destructive Iran Deal by The Elephant's Child

6360155002864306931045846527_483208412-real-estate-tycoon-donald-trump-flashes-the-thumbs-up.jpg.CROP.promo-xlarge2

Everyone, by now, knows that President Trump blew up the Iran Deal. Do people understand that it was not a treaty? It was undertaken unilaterally. President Obama was never able to pull together any kind of consensus. There was no real accountability. Even as Iran was pushing one demand after another, a number of U.S. senators explained to the despots that such a deal could easily be scuttled. Nearly every Republican candidate for the presidency in 2016 promised to withdraw or renegotiate the “Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action.”

Obama likely didn’t believe the GOP would regain the presidency — and if it did, he probably couldn’t conceive of a situation where a president would dare back out of a non-proliferation agreement, however flawed. And, as many problems as I do have with Trump, I can’t imagine that any other Republican would have withstood the unrelenting political pressure that was likely exerted, not only from allies but also from business interests at home, either.

The President had the prerogative to walk away from the agreement at any time, whether or not Iran was found in violation of the IAEA. The Iran Deal did nothing to safeguard against the production of nuclear weapons. We even had to ask permission to inspect.

We also know that after Trump’s speech making the case for withdrawal, Iranian president Hassan Rouhani claimed that Iran would be “prepared for enrichment in the next weeks.” Which is a weird thing for a nation that has completely given up its desire to obtain nuclear weapons to say. Then again the idea that this agreement, as promised by so many in Obama administration, snuffed the Islamic Republic’s nuclear ambitions was absurd all along.

Iran is continuing to develop a ballistic missile program to deliver those weapons. The Boeing deal is off. The United States can reinstate sanctions, and we can target any nation that helps Iran in its quest for nuclear weapons. European nations will probably try to salvage the deal, as they have irons, so to speak, in the fire with profitable business to do with Iran.

Iran can come back to the table. The administration’s demands for a new agreement are wholly reasonable: Stop developing ballistic missiles that are meant to deliver nuclear weapons; Stop supporting terrorist groups around the Middle East that undermine U.S. interests and those of our allies — in Syria, Lebanon, Palestinian territories, Yemen, etc; Stop publicly threatening our ally Israel with destruction; Stop threatening freedom of navigation in the Persian Gulf and Red Sea; Stop fueling the civil war in Yemen; Stop cyberattacks on the United States; Stop kidnapping Americans.

Is there something unreasonable about that? People probably thought that those things were part of the deal. They weren’t.

We can now target Iranian aggression. No more pretenses. We can target Iran’s terror regime through economic means. We can support the human rights advocates in Iran, and maybe do something useful.

I don’t know that any other candidate could have withstood all the silly guff from the leftist media, who are far stronger in anti-Trumpism than in either common sense or history. Donald Trump just did a difficult, but very good thing.

 



100,000 Secret Files Prove Iran Lied About Nuclear Weapons by The Elephant's Child

Not a Monday like most Mondays. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced to the world that Iran and Iran’s Mullahs and Presidents and spokesmen have all been lying about nuclear weapons, and their supposed rejection of any interest in nuclear weapons or a nuclear weapons program, lying through their teeth. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu unveiled to the international community a cache of  100,000 secret files he said were obtained from inside a hidden Iranian site that clearly demonstrate that Tehran maintained  a secret nuclear weapons program despite continuing declarations to the contrary.

Netanyahu explained that Iran was, from the beginning, deceptive in their descriptions of their previous nuclear work. After signing the nuclear deal in 2015, Iran’s leaders repeatedly denied ever pursuing nuclear weapons, Netanyahu said. “Tonight I’m here to tell you one thing: Iran lied.”

After they signed the nuclear deal, they intensified the effort to hide their secret files. In 2017 Iran moved its nuclear weapons files to a highly secret location in Tehran. Netanyahu said the secret files prove the following:

Iran lied about never having a secret nuclear program. Second, even after the deal it continued to expand its nuclear program for future use. Third, Iran lied by not coming clean to the IAEA. Finally, the nuclear deal is based on lies based on Iranian deception.

The prime minister’s speech was based on 55,000 pages of documents and 183 CDs that were smuggled out of an “atomic archive” painstakingly preserving Iran’s secretive nuclear program so that the country would have the option of restarting the program after the nuclear deal ends or in the case of Tehran dumping the agreement.  Israel’s ability to acquire the archive marks a massive coup for the Jewish state.

It contains “incriminating documents, incriminating charts, incriminating presentations, incriminating blueprints, incriminating photos, incriminating videos and more.” Israel has shared the material with the U.S. and “the United States can vouch for its authenticity.”

The Plan, called Project Amad, aimed to design, produce and test five warheads, each with a 10 kiloton TNT yield, for integration on a missile.  “That is like five Hiroshima bombs to be put on ballistic missiles.”

Netanyahu called on President Donald Trump to do the right thing for the United States, the right thing for Israel, and the right thing for the peace of the world.  The May 12 deadline to recertify the nuclear agreement approaches.

Deafening silence from the usual suspects: John Kerry, Ben Rhodes, Samantha Powers, and former president Barack Obama. Here’s a collection of Ben Rhodes’ Tweets on Iran that got absolutely everything wrong. But there’s no pleasure in proving that they were way too gullible. We tried to tell them so, but they wanted to believe.




%d bloggers like this: