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The Serious Side - part 2

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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by party animal - not! on Sun 02 Apr 2017, 19:41

Here's the Trump effect:

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/us-politics/canada-illegal-immigrants-cross-us-border-emerson-escape-deportation-camps-us-customs-undocumented-a7652756.html

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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by LizzyNY on Sun 02 Apr 2017, 22:33

PAN - My first reaction to this piece was sadness and embarrassment for my country. My entire life I have believed that the US is a haven for the oppressed. To hear someone say they are afraid to stay in this country breaks my heart. Someone needs to remind Donald Trump that God is watching.
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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by annemarie on Mon 03 Apr 2017, 02:00

Lizzy Donald's god is the almighty dollar.

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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by party animal - not! on Mon 03 Apr 2017, 02:15

......I'm not sure he has much respect for God, Lizzy. He proved that at the church service before his inauguration. He clearly did not know how to behave

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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by carolhathaway on Mon 03 Apr 2017, 07:07

Thanks for this article, PAN!
Trump's grandparents immigrated from Germany, and his wife came from Slowenia, his ex-wife from the Czech Republic, so you would think that Trump himself has a different view on people coming to the States. But that would require empathy, and I don't think he even knows how to spell that word...

People leave their home country for various reasons, most of them are wars, danger, famine and poverty. Wars were often created or forced by the States and other countries, famine often is a result of climate change, caused by the leading industrial countries, danger often is a result of the western countries' influence on their own politics, and many countries are poor because some hundred years ago, European countries decided to colonialize them, exploit their natural resources and enslave their people.

But now it's their own fault that they are not able to vote for a good government and politicians and feed their family.
Look what's happening at the moment: in several African countries like Somalia, Sudan and South Sudan people are starving. In the Middle East people are on the run. We even habe thousands of asylseekers from Turkey at the moment - every month, people who try to escape from Erdogan's politics.

THIS LEADS TO REFUGEES BECAUSE THESE PEOPLE HAVE NOTHING TO LOSE! 

And if you watched the news over the last days, you know what's going on in Middle and South America...
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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by Donnamarie on Mon 03 Apr 2017, 14:19

Carol, you, I and others here are intuitive enough to see that Trump never shows empathy and you are right ... he probably can't even spell the word. I think it's quite dangerous when you have anyone in as powerful a position as a President who is not capable of reaching out beyond his/herself to feel what others feel. It is IMO a serious defect in how this man is wired. It doesn't bode well for how he will govern our country. Especially when this man's first priority is himself, not our country or the world in general.
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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by LizzyNY on Mon 03 Apr 2017, 15:30

It astonishes me how so many people can refuse to see him for what he is. Nick Kristoff interviewed people who voted for him and know they are being directly hurt by his agenda - and yet they still support him. They don't like what he's doing - they know that his budget cuts will impact the programs they depend on - but they'd vote for him again. It makes no sense. I wonder what it would take to wake them up.
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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by LizzyNY on Mon 03 Apr 2017, 15:51

I just received an email that really made me laugh. Rep. Earl Blumenauer is introducing a bill to block taxpayer money being spent on hotels and restaurants owned by the president or his family. It would apply to all presidents, but the fact that it is aimed at the Cheeto-In-Chief is obvious. The bill is titled: No Taxpayer Revenue Used to Monetize the Presidency. In other words, NO TRUMP. Very Happy

If anyone's interested, they're collecting signatures of support at:
     act@credoaction.com

The bill's title might be tongue-in-cheek, but it really is a serious issue. The amount of taxpayer money being spent on these people is disgusting. If there's even a slight chance for this bill to gain traction it deserves support. If you agree, please sign the petition.
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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by annemarie on Mon 03 Apr 2017, 21:27

Lizzy I signed i hope it gets passe.

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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by annemarie on Mon 03 Apr 2017, 21:29

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4376444/Democrats-line-Senate-showdown-Gorsuch.html

Senate set to go 'nuclear' on Trump's Supreme Court pick: Dems have enough votes to filibuster as Neil Gorsuch is voted through committee

  • Democrats are lining up in opposition over President Trump's Supreme Court pick, Judge Neil Gorsuch 

  • The Democrats have enough votes to filibuster the nominee, which means Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell could trigger the 'nuclear option'

  • Currently, 60 votes are needed to invoke cloture and avoid a filibuster, with just a majority needed to confirm a nominee 

  • Gorsuch passed through the Senate Judiciary Committee Monday afternoon with a 11-9 strict party line vote

  • The full Senate will consider his nomination later this week, with McConnell vowing to get Gorsuch through  


By Nikki Schwab, U.s. Political Reporter For Dailymail.com
PUBLISHED: 12:02 EDT, 3 April 2017 UPDATED: 16:18 EDT, 3 April 2017

    
Senate Democrats have amassed enough 'no' votes to filibuster President Donald Trump's Supreme Court nominee, Neil Gorsuch, which means Republicans will likely pursue the 'nuclear option' to get the judge through. 
Gorsuch's nomination passed through the Senate Judiciary Committee Monday afternoon, 11-9, in a straight party line vote.  
Earlier during the hearing, Democratic Sen. Chris Coons of Delaware told members that he would be voting no on Gorusch and also no on cloture, where – as the rules stand now – 60 votes are needed to end debate.
'I am not ready to end debate on this issue, so I will be voting against cloture, unless we are able, as a body, to finally sit down and find a way to avoid the nuclear option and ensure the process to fill the next vacancy on the court is not a narrowly partisan process,' Coons said. 
Coons' commitment was noteworthy because he was the 41st Democrat to say he'd vote no on cloture, practically ensuring that the Republicans go nuclear by the end of the week.    
Only four Democrats, Joe Manchin of West Virginia, Michael Bennet of Colorado, Joe Donnelly of Indiana and Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota, have said they would join with Republicans to break a filibuster on Gorsuch, a federal appellate judge with conservative credentials. 

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Democrats have now amassed enough votes to filibuster Neil Gorsuch, as Delaware's Chris Coons (right) announced he'd vote no on confirmation and no on cloture



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Delaware's Sen. Chris Coons (center right) said he will vote 'no' on cloture, meaning Democrats now have enough votes to filibuster President Trump's Supreme Court pick 



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The Senate Judiciary Committee met Monday to discuss the nomination of Neil Gorsuch, with Democrats Dianne Feinstein (left) and Patrick Leahy (right) reviewing documents 



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Sen. Dianne Feinstein, the committee's ranking member, announced Monday that she would not vote for the federal judge 



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Sen. Chuck Grassley (left) takes a seat next to his committee's ranking member Sen. Dianne Feinstein (center) as she talks with Vermont Sen. Patricky Leahy



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Sen. Chuck Grassley, the chair of the committee, spoke at today's meeting of the Senate Judiciary Committee 



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Sen. Chuck Grassley (left) greets committee member Sen. Al Franken (right), a prominent Democrat who has already voiced that he would not be supporting Judge Neil Gorsuch 



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Sen. Al Franken cracks a smile during Monday's Senate Judiciary Committee hearing as the body discusses President Donald Trump's Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch 


[size=10][size=18]Senate committee votes to approve Supreme Court nominee Gorsuch






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At the White House today, Press Secretary Sean Spicer said the four Democratic votes signaled enough bipartisan support for Gorsuch. 
'I think we feel good about that level of support,' Spicer said. 
He also said President Trump was OK with Senate Republicans pursuing the nuclear option.  
'The president said several weeks ago that this was something he would support,' Spicer told reporters. 'We're comfortable in the sense that obviously that decision is up to Leader McConnell to make.' 

The Senate is voting on the fate of Judge Neil Gorsuch this week, President Trump's Supreme Court pick 
McConnell expressed his opinion on the matter during an appearance on Sunday's Meet the Press.  
'Neil Gorsuch will be confirmed this week,' McConnell told Chuck Todd. 
'How that happens really depends on our Democratic friends, how many of them are willing to oppose cloture on a partisan basis to kill a Supreme Court nominee,' the top Senate Republican added, suggesting this move has 'never happened before in history.' 
Through the Obama years, however, it was the Republicans who would use the filibuster threat to stop President Obama's judicial nominees from getting through Democrats have argued. 
'Well, let's look at the history, our Republican colleagues had been holding back on just about all of so many lower court judges, including the very important D.C. circuit,' explained Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., yesterday on Meet the Press. 
In turn, Democrats, then in the majority and led by Sen. Harry Reid, D-Nev., changed the rules in 2013 so just a majority would be needed to invoke cloture on lower level nominations. 
Democrats are still embittered that while Justice Antonin Scalia died last February on President Obama's watch, the Republican Senate majority refused to move on the Democratic president's pick, Judge Merrick Garland, citing the looming presidential election last year. 



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Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., explained that the Democrats went nuclear in 2013 because Republicans were holding up President Obama's lower level judicial nominations - but they kept the 60-vote rule intact for Supreme Court nominees 
'Everyone knew ... that if the shoe fit on the other foot, they wouldn't have confirmed a Republican president's vacancy in the middle of a presidential election,' McConnell said on Meet the Press. 'So that clearly wasn't going to happen.'
Today, the committee's top Democrat, Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif, announced early in the day she would not be supporting Trump's nominee.   
Feinstein was among the Democrats who hadn't yet publicly announced her vote. 
While thanking Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, the committee's chair, for allowing her colleagues to substantially probe Gorsuch, she noted two things on his record stuck out.
She disagreed with his interpretation of whether a trucking employee should be fired, after the driver refused to drive a disabled rig through a blizzard. 
A number of her Democratic peers also brought up this case as one of their biggest turn offs, as Gorsuch sided with the trucking company.  
She also brought up a case in which Gorsuch sided with a school district, allowing it to deny services to a child with autism. 
Like many of her Democratic colleagues, she didn't like how Gorsuch, through the course of the hearings, wasn't forthcoming about some of his views, including whether he agreed with the Supreme Court's ruling in Brown v. Board of Education, the landmark case that made school segregation illegal.
'Unfortunately based on Judge Gorsuch's record at the Department of Justice, his tenure on the bench, his appearance before the Senate and his written questions for the record, I cannot support this nominee,' she told the committee. 



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Sen. Chuck Grassley (center) speaks at today's Senate Judiciary Committee hearing, flanked by Republicans Lindsey Graham (far left) and Orrin Hatch (center left), along with Democrats Dianne Feinstein (center right) and Patrick Leahy (far right)



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Sen. Dianne Feinstein leafs through documents at today's Senate Judiciary Committee hearing. She announced this morning she would not be supporting Judge Gorsuch 

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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by Katiedot on Tue 04 Apr 2017, 07:33

Not sure I fully support this kind of behaviour. It brings the democrats down to the low levels of republicans who blocked so much while President Obama was in power.

This isn't really democracy at work: it's pettiness.
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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by annemarie on Tue 04 Apr 2017, 11:09

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4377916/Massachusetts-city-calls-Trump-impeachment-probe.html

Massachusetts city votes for impeachment investigation into President Trump

  • The Cambridge City Council passed a resolution Monday evening calling for the US House of Representatives to launch and impeachment investigation

  • The city wants the House to investigate whether Trump's business interests violate the Constitution

  • Cambridge voted for Hillary Clinton in the election 


By Associated Press
PUBLISHED: 23:39 EDT, 3 April 2017 UPDATED: 03:44 EDT, 4 April 2017

    
The Massachusetts city of Cambridge has passed a resolution calling for an impeachment investigation into President Donald Trump.
The Cambridge City Council passed the resolution Monday evening by a 7-1 vote. One council member abstained from voting.



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Massachusetts city of Cambridge has passed a resolution calling for an impeachment investigation into President Donald Trump



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The city is across the Charles River from Boston, and is home to Harvard University
The resolution calls on the US House of Representatives to review whether Trump's many business interests violate the foreign emoluments clause or the domestic emoluments clause of the US Constitution. 
The clauses prohibit the president from profiting from foreign governments, the federal governor or state governments, other than his salary.

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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by LizzyNY on Tue 04 Apr 2017, 14:29

Katie - It isn't pettiness. It's blocking the appointment of someone who will, for years, impact the lives of millions of people with policies many find abhorrent. He was nominated by a man who may have colluded with a foreign nation to get elected and who may, in the near future, be impeached.

Isn't it common sense that a major appointment such as this be postponed until we know if the man who appointed him even has the right to do so? It's quite possible it will be proved that Donald Trump has no right to be president after all.
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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by Donnamarie on Tue 04 Apr 2017, 14:39

Katiedot wrote:Not sure I fully support this kind of behaviour.  It brings the democrats down to the low levels of republicans who blocked so much while President Obama was in power.  

This isn't really democracy at work: it's pettiness.


Katie, I agree with you on one level.  It is very partisan and seemingly petty.   But it is more complicated than that.  In the end the nominee Gorsuch is going to get confirmed.  But I'm pretty torn myself if the filibuster was the right way for the Democrats to go.  It's business as usual.  Most Democratic Members of Congress plus the base of their support feel very principled in their rejection of Gorsuch.  Two fold ... one, because of his habit of siding with corporate interests over individual citizens and how that will affect the Court and two, the robbing of Obama's selection of a Supreme Court nominee last year.  Many of us feel really strongly about not letting the Republicans get away with their reckless actions last year.  In the end the Democrats will look like obstructionists to the Republicans but Democrats will feel good about standing up for their principles.  It's a vicious circle for sure.


Last edited by Donnamarie on Tue 04 Apr 2017, 14:41; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : correct spelling)
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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by Donnamarie on Tue 04 Apr 2017, 14:47

Yep Lizzy you're right .... another consideration for the Senate. Trump is under a major investigation right now so some Members of Congress feel that it isn't right for him to be able to make such an impactful decision at this time.
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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by carolhathaway on Tue 04 Apr 2017, 19:12

Sorry, guys, but I think the terror attack in St. Petersburg and the bombing with chemical weapons in Syria, followed by bombing a hospital where the victims were treated, are way too important to be discussed in the Chit Chat thread IMO...

The assassin in Russia was Russian, born in Kyrgyzstan, a former Russian republic, in central Asia. No terror group claimed to be responsible up to now.

The attack with a toxic gas - probably Sarin - in a Syrian town near Aleppo also led to the death of many people, and nobody's responsible either. After a bombing several years ago (with about 1,400 victims), all chemical weapons had to be destroyed, but the UN assumed that they didn't find all of them.
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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by Donnamarie on Tue 04 Apr 2017, 20:57

On the gas attack in Syria its horrific. Saw images this morning of children fighting for their lives. I guess everyone is assuming that the Syrian military is responsible for this attack. The deal that Syria made with the U.S. and Russia was that all of Syria's chemical weapons would be shipped out of Syria by Russia a few years ago. Guess they didn't hand them all over.

Trump wants to take a hands-off approach to interfering in conflicts in other countries. So I'm not sure he plans on taking any action. He also said today that it is the fault of our two previous administrations for what happened today. Well that is a complicated argument. On some level the actions/inactions taken by our previous presidents have exacerbated this dire situation in Syria. But Assad is the evil one here. This catastrophe is ultimately his doing and he owns it. But I struggle with what responsibility we own to protect the human rights of others in peril in other parts of the world.

The big question for me is how does any country intercede in Syria at this point and save the Syrian people from this madman. It would mean all-out war. Taking Assad out ... and then what? It must seem hopeless for these people. Providing safe zones and supplying weapons to rebel fighters? I'm not sure how effective these actions would be now. It doesn't seem the UN could do anything of consequence.

Would like to know what you guys think.
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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by carolhathaway on Tue 04 Apr 2017, 21:36

Donna,
if you remember just a few years ago, leaders all over the world demanded that Assad needed to be kicked off his a... to bring peace to Syria. Then Putin decided to collaborate with him to fight ISIS (saw him as the lesser evil, I guess). And after the previous attack with toxic gas some years ago had no military consequences for him (though Obama had always mentioned the use of toxic gas against your own people as 'crossing the red line'), he seemed to know that he could get away with nearly every crime against humanity.
And the EU only seems to worry about no more refugees from Syria coming to Europe.

It's such a horrible and hopeless situation for the Syrian people...


Last edited by carolhathaway on Tue 04 Apr 2017, 21:38; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Auto-correction is on, corrects everything into German or a fantasy language...)
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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by Donnamarie on Tue 04 Apr 2017, 22:03

Yes it is carolhathaway!   The U.S. went into Iraq and took out Hussein.  We made a mess, tried to set up a proper government and that country is still struggling ... and we lost so many soldiers in that conflict.  Can't say it was worth it. Then we didn't go into Syria against the supposedly better judgment of the U.S. military, some in Congress and foreign policy leaders ... and now Syria is imploding.  We went into Libya and successfully took out Gaddafi but didn't stick around long enough to make sure a proper government was put into place.  So Libya is kind of a mess.  Hmmm ....  damned if you do and damned if you don't.  I'm at a loss for a remedy.


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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by annemarie on Tue 04 Apr 2017, 23:13

http://people.com/politics/president-trump-blames-barack-obama-chemical-attack-syria/


[size=37]President Trump Blames Barack Obama for Chemical Weapons Attack in Syria[/size]

BY ALANA ABRAMSON

POSTED ON APRIL 4, 2017 AT 5:07PM EDT


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[url=https://pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fpeople.com%2Fpolitics%2Fpresident-trump-blames-barack-obama-chemical-attack-syria%2F&media=https%3A%2F%2Fpeopledotcom.files.wordpress.com%2F2017%2F03%2Fgettyimages-633583374.jpg%3Fw%3D1024&description=President Trump Blames Barack Obama for Chemical Weapons Attack in%C2%A0Syria][/url]
US PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP WAITS FOR A LUNCH MEETING WITH HARLEY DAVIDSON EXECUTIVES AND UNION REPRESENTATIVES IN THE ROOSEVELT ROOM OF THE WHITE HOUSE FEBRUARY 2, 2017 IN WASHINGTON, DC. / AFP / BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI (PHOTO CREDIT SHOULD READ BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/GETTY IMAGES)
President Trump has condemned the deadly chemical attack in Syria that killed dozens of civilians, blaming Syrian President Bashar Assad — but also faulting the foreign policy of his own predecessor Barack Obama.
“Today’s chemical attack in Syria against innocent people, including women and children, is reprehensible and cannot be ignored by the civilized world,” Trump said in a statement.
At least 35 people were killed in the attack in Khan Sheikhoun, Syria, one of the worst in the country’s six-year-long Civil War. The Syrian government has denied responsibility, but the United States is blaming Assad, and arguing that the Obama Administration enabled him.
FROM COINAGE: This Is How Much It Would Cost to Paint the White House (And More Crazy Facts) 



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This Is How Much It Would Cost to Paint the White House (And More Crazy Facts)
It costs a lot of money to keep up with the maintenance and repairs of the President's living quarters!

[/size]
“These heinous actions by the Bashar Assad regime are a consequence of the past administration’s weakness and irresolution,” Trump said.[/size]

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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by Katiedot on Wed 05 Apr 2017, 04:42

LizzyNY wrote:Katie - It isn't pettiness. It's blocking the appointment of someone who will, for years, impact the lives of millions of people with policies many find abhorrent. He was nominated by a man who may have colluded with a foreign nation to get elected and who may, in the near future, be impeached.

Isn't it common sense that a major appointment such as this be postponed until we know if the man who appointed him even has the right to do so? It's quite possible it will be proved that Donald Trump has no right to be president after all.
Yes, I get that, but yours is an 'the ends justify the means' rationale. There needs to be a better way to block someone who's not suitable for a job from getting appointed than this. Otherwise it's no better than every time the republicans blocked Obama from doing things.
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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by party animal - not! on Wed 05 Apr 2017, 10:03

Quite how Trump could justify this statement is beyond me.

To cut along story short Obama backed a UN convention ruling that saw the removal of all of Syria's chemical weapons to be declassified and shipped to Italy under escort. This resulted in Assad's stocks being transferred from one ship to the offer off the Calabrian coast in July 2014.

Ahead of this, as you can imagine, many rounds of talks between Kerry and Labrov to make this happen....and many inspections from the international community later on and up to the present day, which then found traces of sarin amongst others...leading some to believe they were not quite done with Assad....(ironic comment)

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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by LizzyNY on Wed 05 Apr 2017, 14:11

Katiedot wrote:Yes, I get that, but yours is an 'the ends justify the means' rationale.  There needs to be a better way to block someone who's not suitable for a job from getting appointed than this.  Otherwise it's no better than every time the republicans blocked Obama from doing things.  
I would usually agree with you. In a normal world the ends don't justify the means. But what we're experiencing is not normal. If we have to get our hands dirty to fix this mess, then so be it. If we don't do everything we can to minimize the impact of this election we will be dealing with the consequences - the destruction of our established institutions - for years to come. The least of those consequences being that our government is being sold to the highest bidder to enrich the Trumps.

I laughed when ISIS issued a statement that the US is being governed by an idiot. Tell us something we don't know! The problem is that the people behind him aren't idiots. They're smart and they're greedy. They put themselves above everything else and the welfare of the rest of us be damned. So, until they are out of power or until Congress wakes up and starts controlling them, we have to oppose their agenda any way we can.
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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by Donnamarie on Wed 05 Apr 2017, 14:53

As long as the Republicans can use Trump to further their own agenda they will stand behind him. But there are cracks in that support. Most notably the defeat of their health care plan. The Freedom Caucus and the moderate Republicans are not on the same page ... especially in the House.

It is repulsive to read about the actions of Trump to eliminate regulations and programs that protect ordinary citizens. His proposed budget cuts are reckless. But he is being applauded by the business community and Republicans (unless those cuts hurt their districts). Trump is showing how uncaring and heartless he truly is. Many of us can see right through his actions but the Trump base only sees that he can do no wrong. They act like he is their savior. He continues to be showy enough in his appeal and superficial actions to his supporters that they see him as following through on his campaign promises.

PAN, I remember in 2013 when Obama had to make a decision on military action against Syria. Sadly our weak and cowardly Congress would not vote on military action and left the decision to Obama. Whether he made the right decision not to attack at that time I just don't know. But the plan put together by Kerry and Labrov to eliminate the chemical weapons from Syria seemed like the second best option and a respectable out for Obama. According to government officials the weapons were successfully removed. But it seems the Syrian government was able to hide some stockpiles ... despite the inspections?
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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by carolhathaway on Wed 05 Apr 2017, 18:38

Live TV 


Bannon removed from National Security Council role
By Dan Merica and Jeremy Diamond, CNN 
Updated 1:21 PM EDT, Wed April 05, 2017


Story highlights

  • Bannon is Trump's chief strategist
  • He's been removed from the council

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(CNN)Steve Bannon, President Donald Trump's chief strategist, has been removed from his permanent seat at the National Security Council, multiple sources tell CNN, moving the council into a more traditional structure.
The decision, which one source with knowledge said was made by Trump himself, comes after the President in January authorized the reorganization of the National Security Council to include Bannon as a permanent member of the panel.



The move is a demotion for Bannon and a win for H.R. McMaster, who Trump picked in February to lead the council after Michael Flynn was fired for misleading Vice Presiden Mike Pence about undisclosed contacts he had with Russian operatives. McMaster, an Army lieutenant general, has to date struggled to gain tangible influence inside the White House, including in issues of hiring and firing.
Bannon's title was removed from the standing list of members of the National Security Council in a regulatory filing posted Wednesday, first reported by Bloomberg.

McMaster up, Bannon down


The decision to remove Bannon from the council is the first public diminishing of his power inside the West Wing, two senior Republicans close to the White House noted. One official was skeptical of the pro-Bannon spin from sources saying he was only there to keep eye on Flynn.
The argument that Bannon was on the council to watch Flynn ignores that fact that the former campaign adviser was Trump's top pick for national security adviser and someone the President has defended even after he asked for his resignation in February.
"General Flynn is a wonderful man. I think he has been treated very, very unfairly by the media, as I call it, the fake media in many cases," Trump said after Flynn left. "And I think it is really a sad thing that he was treated so badly."
Bannon, the source said, will still be allowed to "attend any meeting" where his expertise is needed, a more traditional structure for the National Security Council.
Ultimately, this is a diminishing move for him, official says, but "empowering for McMaster."

'Babysitting'


Multiple sources looked to minimize the removal. One argued that Bannon was put on the council to ensure that it no longer "micro-managed" foreign policy and was put on a more "operational track."
Other sources argued that Bannon was elevated to the council in order to keep tabs on Flynn. One source with knowledge described Bannon's job as "babysitting" Flynn on the council.
Another said Bannon was only on board to oversee Flynn's work to "de-operationalize" the National Security Council from the broad purview it had under Susan Rice, President Barack Obama's national security adviser.
A source with knowledge of the move said Bannon can "still attend any meeting" where his expertise is needed.
"In all the time he was there, he only attended one principals meeting," the source said. "He is still welcome to attend principal meetings."

Controversial move


The decision to elevate Bannon in the first place was a controversial one because, at the same time, the order indicated that the director of national intelligence and the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff would not be regular attendees.
The committee is a Cabinet-level group of agencies focused on national security that was established by President George H.W. Bush in 1989.
Regular members of the Principals Committee will include the secretary of state, the treasury secretary, the defense secretary, the attorney general, the secretary of Homeland Security, the assistant to the President and chief of staff, the assistant to the President and chief strategist, the national security adviser and the Homeland Security adviser.
Former acting CIA chief Michael Morell sharply criticized the move in January, calling it "unprecedented" in an appearance on "CBS This Morning."
"I have never been to a principals' meeting where the views of the DNI and the views of the chairman are not relevant," said Morell, who advised Hillary Clinton's campaign for president. "Every principals' meeting starts with an intelligence briefing by the DNI."
Bannon's accession also demonstrated the breadth of his influence inside the White House, signaling that the former head of Brietbart News' influence extended beyond politics and domestic policy.
CNN's Nicole Gaouette, Joe Johns and Jim Acosta contributed to this report.
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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by fava on Wed 05 Apr 2017, 18:59

Gotta love that part of the the White House spin is that they could not trust the National Security Advisor they appointed!

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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by Donnamarie on Wed 05 Apr 2017, 19:49

Don't believe anything coming out of this White House unless it can be verified by the LEGITIMATE press.

I think McMaster told the Trumpster it's either him or me.
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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by party animal - not! on Thu 06 Apr 2017, 15:34

Robert Costa's twitter page is great!

https://twitter.com/costareports?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw&ref_url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.independent.co.uk%2Fnews%2Fworld%2Famericas%2Fus-politics%2Fdevin-nunes-quits-russia-investigation-house-intelligence-committee-chair-step-down-donald-trump-a7670466.html

Nunes has stepped down 'temporarily'

I think McMaster is getting into his stride.......!

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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by annemarie on Thu 06 Apr 2017, 18:30

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4387498/Trump-considersmilitary-strikes-Syria-gas-horror.html

BREAKING NEWS: Trump considers launching military strikes in Syria following Assad's 'heinous' chemical weapons attack – and White House aide says 'he's deadly serious'

  • President Trump is reportedly considering military action in retaliation for Syria's use of chemical weapons against civilians this week

  • White House aide says Trump is, in part, trying to 'telegraph to Assad – and to Russia – that he's deadly serious'

  • Trump called the gas attack a 'heinous' act on Wednesday and said it crossed a 'red line' for him

  • It's unknown what kind of Syrian targets might be on the Pentagon's list but chemical weapons facilities and airstrips would be likely


By David Martosko, Us Political Editor For Dailymail.com
PUBLISHED: 12:35 EDT, 6 April 2017 UPDATED: 13:07 EDT, 6 April 2017

    
President Trump is weighing the possibility of launching military strikes against Syria in the wake of this week's horrific chemical weapons attack.
'We are told that the president himself is making calls to senior members of Congress saying he is seriously considering something he said he would never do, not that long ago, which is military action in Syria,' CNN reported shortly after noon on Thursday.
The discussions are said to be exploratory in nature, with no decisions made about a green-light, or about what kinds of military operations might be involved to target Syrian strongman Bashar al-Assad.
But 'this is now on the table,' CNN said.
A Trump administration official who was granted anonymity in order to speak freely told DailyMail.com on Thursday that part of the president's strategy is to 'telegraph to Assad – and to Russia – that he's deadly serious.'



+5
New resolve: President Trump, who was with his wife Melania at a White House reception for wounded veterans on Thursday. is 'deadly serious' about the possibility of military strikes, an official told DailyMail.com



+5
Agony: Syrian father Abdul Hamid al-Yousef was pictured cradling the bodies of his dead twins after they were killed in the chemical attack in Khan Sheikhoun, in the rebel-held central province of Idlib, Syria



+5
Russia finally condemned the ghastly chemical weapons attack on Thursday despite being allied with Bashar al-Assad against Islamist rebels in Syria
It also may be intended to rattle a saber in the direction of Russian President Vladimir Putin, whose army also operates out of Syria in defense of Assad's regime.
U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson is scheduled to meet with Putin next week in Moscow.
Trump said Wednesday during a Rose Garden press conference with Jordan's King Abdullah that his view of how to handle the Syrian crisis changed when he saw the impact of the 'heinous' chemical attack on small children.
'Yesterday's chemical attack, a chemical attack that was so horrific in Syria against innocent people, including women, small children and even beautiful little babies – their deaths were an affront to humanity,' Trump said.



+5
Heartbreak: Disturbing footage shows Syrian father Abdul Hamid al-Yousef crying uncontrollably over the graves of his wife and two children who were killed in a suspected sarin gas attack this week



+5
Target: The massacre by Bashar al-Assad's forces has changed Trump's view of the Syrian leader and could lead to military strikes against him
'These heinous actions by the Assad regime cannot be tolerated. The United States stands with our allies across the globe to condemn this horrific attack and all other horrific attacks, for that matter,' the president added.
CNN could not confirm what kinds of targets the Pentagon might strike if Trump and Defense Secretary James Mattis decide to move forward.

'An unacceptable massacre': World leaders condemn chemical attack 


Pope Francis has called the suspected chemical weapons attack 'an unacceptable massacre'.
The pope said Wednesday that he was 'watching with horror at the latest events in Syria', and said he 'strongly deplored the unacceptable massacre.' 
French President Francois Hollande accused Syrian leader Bashar al-Assad of responsibility for the 'massacre'. 
 'Those who support this regime can once again reflect on the enormity of their political, strategic and moral responsibility,' he said.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Wednesday branded the deadly suspected chemical attack in Syria a 'war crime' and demanded Russia and Iran put pressure on President Assad.  

Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri says people should not be shocked by the chemical attack because the international community is allowing such acts to happen. 
Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said that the use of chemical weapons is 'illegal and abhorrent.'

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said the world must act to rid Syria of chemical weapons.   

But the network did report, based on a congressional source's information, that Syria only has access to six airstrips for takeoffs and landings.
'Airstrikes would not be that hard to successfully use to take out at least Syrian air capability,' that would mean.
The possibility of striking chemical weapons sites is also under consideration.
But John McCain and Lindsey Graham, two Republican senators, said in a statement that an international coalition should collaborate 'to ground Assad's air force.'
'We agree with the President that Assad has crossed a line with his latest use of chemical weapons. The message from the United States must be that this will not stand. We must show that no foreign power can or will protect Assad now. He must pay a punitive cost for this horrific attack,' they declared.
'In addition to other measures, the United States should lead an international coalition to ground Assad's air force. This capability provides Assad a strategic advantage in his brutal slaughter of innocent civilians, both through the use of chemical weapons as well as barrel bombs, which kill far more men, women and children on a daily basis.'
On Tuesday the White House said ousting Assad is at its heart impractical.
'There is not a fundamental option of regime change, as there has been in the past,' press secretary Sean Spicer said.



Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4387498/Trump-considersmilitary-strikes-Syria-gas-horror.html#ixzz4dUXeadup 
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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by LizzyNY on Thu 06 Apr 2017, 18:56

So it takes the deaths of "women, small children and even beautiful little babies" to get this moron's attention?! WTF?  Did he think nobody was dying there? Did he have to see the pictures of those poor babies before he believed it? Did he think it was fake news?


  The sooner this jackass is impeached, the better for all of us.
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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by party animal - not! on Thu 06 Apr 2017, 19:19

Well, here's the man who was working for him a few weeks ago speaking yesterday

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HiHvTHhWf28

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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by Donnamarie on Thu 06 Apr 2017, 19:44

party animal - not! wrote:Robert Costa's twitter page is great!

https://twitter.com/costareports?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw&ref_url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.independent.co.uk%2Fnews%2Fworld%2Famericas%2Fus-politics%2Fdevin-nunes-quits-russia-investigation-house-intelligence-committee-chair-step-down-
-trump-a7670466.html

Nunes has stepped down 'temporarily'

I think McMaster is getting into his stride.......!




Robert Costa is a terrific and very serious journalist! He's very balanced in his reporting and stays clear of the usual hyperbolic rhetoric.

Interesting timing for the Nunes move. Maybe it was thought today's announcement would get lost in the Supreme Court, Syrian mess and China visit news.

Yes I think McMaster is putting his foot down. Thank God. Somebody's got to ...






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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by Donnamarie on Thu 06 Apr 2017, 19:55

LizzyNY wrote:So it takes the deaths of "women, small children and even beautiful little babies" to get this moron's attention?! WTF?  Did he think nobody was dying there? Did he have to see the pictures of those poor babies before he believed it? Did he think it was fake news?


  The sooner this jackass is impeached, the better for all of us.



Lizzy everyday I live in hope there will be some awesome "breaking news" about information uncovered that directly incriminates Trump in the Russian scandal. Unfortunately it probably will happen much later than sooner ....

Some journalist yesterday actually said that maybe Trump has finally found his moral compass. No way I say! I think Trump was put in a position to come out and speak supposedly from the heart.


Thanks annemarie for the Syria article. That picture with the father holding his two beautiful babies is unbearable.


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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by party animal - not! on Thu 06 Apr 2017, 20:17

Ah, it seems to be getting murkier and murkier in many Washington swamps, Donnamarie....

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=66YIyKiokes

Anderson Cooper a master of understatement!

.....brother of Betsy deVos, ErikPrince

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/us-politics/donald-trump-russia-erik-prince-meeting-probe-calls-jan-schakowsky-a7670031.html

The distraction tactics are amazing - and that includes Nunes!

Many commentators here sense that Trump thinks his(present) stance on Syria might save him........

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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by Donnamarie on Thu 06 Apr 2017, 20:40

Great Anderson Cooper video.  How stupid or audacious is Trump and his team to be associating themselves with such shady characters.  In plain sight no less.  It just doesn't stop.  And now Erik Prince.  If Trump is so damn smart he would have been far more clever and discreet.

I'm also curious as to how this back channel meeting came to light. Who spilled the beans?






Last edited by Donnamarie on Thu 06 Apr 2017, 20:45; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : added text)
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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by party animal - not! on Thu 06 Apr 2017, 21:25

Ah, well, Louise Mensch has been tweeting about all of this for several weeks. She was on Manafort's case too, etc,etc, and she has a brilliant blog

I suspect the FBI will be pretty busy for many weeks.......

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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by annemarie on Fri 07 Apr 2017, 00:41

Your welcome Donnamarie, this is just horrible. Trump had no choice but to speak out .

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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by carolhathaway on Fri 07 Apr 2017, 06:53

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 2:51President Trump Makes Statement on Syria


Video President Trump spoke after the United States carried out a missile attack in Syria on Thursday in response to the Syrian government's deadly chemical weapons attack.

DOUG MILLS/THE NEW YORK TIMES


By MICHAEL R. GORDON, HELENE COOPER and MICHAEL D. SHEAR
APRIL 6, 2017

WASHINGTON — President Trump said Thursday night that the United States had carried out a missile strike in Syria in response to the Syrian government’s chemical weapons attack this week, which killed more than 80 civilians.
“Tonight, I ordered a targeted military strike on the air base in Syria from where the chemical attack was launched,” Mr. Trump said in remarks at his Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida. “It is in this vital national security interest of the United States to prevent and deter the spread and use of deadly chemical weapons.”

Mr. Trump — who was accompanied by senior advisers, including Stephen K. Bannon, his chief strategist; Reince Priebus, his chief of staff; his daughter Ivanka Trump; and others — said his decision had been prompted in part by what he called the failures by the world community to respond effectively to the Syrian civil war.

“Years of previous attempts at changing Assad’s behavior have all failed, and failed very dramatically,” the president said, referring to President Bashar al-Assad of Syria. “As a result, the refugee crisis continues to deepen, and the region continues to destabilize, threatening the United States and its allies.”
The Pentagon announced that 59 Tomahawk cruise missiles had been fired at Al Shayrat airfield in Syria. The missiles were aimed at Syrian fighter jets, hardened aircraft shelters, radars, ammunition bunkers, sites for storing fuel and air defense systems.


[size=12]Hassan Youssef, 40, a victim of Tuesday’s chemical weapons attack in northern Syria, was in a hospital Thursday in the city of Idlib. The United States launched a missile attack Thursday night in response to the Syrian government’s use of such weapons on civilians.


OMAR HAJ KADOUR / AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE — GETTY IMAGES

“Russian forces were notified in advance of the strike using the established deconfliction line,” said Capt. Jeff Davis, a Pentagon spokesman. “Military planners took precautions to minimize risk to Russian or Syrian personnel located at the airfield.” No Russian aircraft were at the base, military officials said.
“We are assessing the results of the strike,” Captain Davis added. “Initial indications are that this strike has severely damaged or destroyed Syrian aircraft and support infrastructure and equipment at Shayrat airfield, reducing the Syrian government’s ability to deliver chemical weapons.”


The cruise missiles struck the airfield beginning around 8:40 p.m. Eastern Time on Thursday, and the strikes continued for three to four minutes.
According to Captain Davis, the missiles were fired from the destroyers Porter and Ross in the eastern Mediterranean.
Talal Barazi, the governor of Homs province, where the base is located, told Reuters early Friday that ambulances and fire trucks were scrambling to respond to fires there.

Administration officials described the strikes Mr. Trump ordered as a graphic message to the world that the president was no longer willing to stand idly by as Mr. Assad used horrific weapons in his country’s long civil war. To do otherwise, they said, would be to essentially bless the use of chemical weapons by Mr. Assad and others who might use them.
“This clearly indicates the president is willing to take decisive action when called for,” Secretary of State Rex W. Tillerson told reporters in Florida. He said Mr. Trump had concluded after seeing the results of the chemical attack that the United States could no longer “turn away, turn a blind eye.”
“The more we fail to respond to the use of these weapons, the more we begin to normalize their use,” Mr. Tillerson said, a thinly veiled reference to President Barack Obama’s decision to refrain from strikes in 2013.
Mr. Tillerson added that the United States had not informed President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia about the coming missile strikes and that Mr. Trump had not spoken with Mr. Putin in the hours afterward.

The decision to act came with a swiftness that took observers of the new president by surprise. After being briefed on the chemical attack shortly after it occurred, American intelligence agencies and their allies worked quickly to confirm the source of the chemical weapons, administration officials said.

In Washington the next day, the president convened a meeting of senior members of his National Security Council, where military aides presented him with three options. Officials said Mr. Trump peppered them with questions and directed them to focus on two of those options.
On Thursday, after Mr. Trump traveled to Florida for his dinner with President Xi Jinping of China, he convened what officials described as a “decision meeting” with his top national security aides — many of them with him at Mar-a-Lago, and others on secure video screens from Washington.


After what aides called a “meeting of considerable length,” Mr. Trump authorized the missile strikes before starting the dinner with Mr. Xi.
“It was important during the president’s deliberations,” said H. R. McMaster, the president’s national security adviser, to weigh the risk of action against the “risk of this continued, egregious, inhumane attacks on innocent civilians with chemical weapons.”
A military official said the attack was at the more limited end of the military options presented to Mr. Trump on Thursday by Defense Secretary Jim Mattis. The official said the strike was intended to send a signal to Mr. Assad about the United States’ intention to use military force if he continues to use chemical weapons.


In this image provided by the United States Navy, the destroyer U.S.S. Porter launched a Tomahawk missile from the Mediterranean Sea on Friday.

MC3 FORD WILLIAMS / U.S. NAVY

It was the first time the White House had ordered military action against forces loyal to Mr. Assad.
Mr. McMaster said the missile strikes would not eliminate Mr. Assad’s ability to use chemical weapons, but would degrade it. He said the United States military had specifically sought to avoid hitting what it believe is a facility containing more sarin gas at the airfield.
He said the military had also sought to “minimize risk” to citizens of other countries — specifically Russians — who might have been in the area at the time.
The Pentagon on Thursday night released a graphic showing the flight track of Syrian aircraft as they left the Shayrat field on Tuesday and carried out the chemical attack in the town of Khan Sheikhoun in Idlib province.
The speed with which the Trump administration responded — and remarks earlier in the day by American officials who said that options were still being considered — appeared intended to maximize the element of surprise, and contrasted sharply with the Obama administration’s methodical scrutiny of a military response.
It was Mr. Trump’s most important order so far for the use of force — virtually all of his administration’s other operations in Syria, Yemen and Iraq have been carried out under authorization delegated to his commanders — and appeared intended to send a message to North Korea, Iran and other potential adversaries that the new commander in chief was prepared to act, sometimes on short notice.





Graphic | Mapping the Targets of the American Military Attack on Syria A look at where the United States fired airstrikes in response to a chemical weapons attack against civilians.

Two Republican senators, John McCain of Arizona and Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, praised the strike in a statement and called for Mr. Trump to go further: to “take Assad’s air force — which is responsible not just for the latest chemical weapons attack, but countless atrocities against the Syrian people — completely out of the fight.”

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel also expressed support.
Mr. Tillerson is scheduled to arrive in Moscow on Tuesday. Administration officials said the strike was intended to put Mr. Tillerson in a position to tell the Russians that they should use their leverage to ensure that Mr. Assad’s government does not carry out more chemical weapon strikes and to facilitate a diplomatic resolution to the civil war in Syria.

The events of Thursday night marked a dramatic turnabout for Mr. Trump, who until this week had displayed virtually no interest in a deeper role for the United States in the long, bloody conflict. Well before he became a presidential candidate, Mr. Trump pleaded with Mr. Obama in 2013 to avoid the kind of strike that he has now ordered.


As recently as this week, before seeing images of dying children gasping for breath during the chemical attack, Mr. Trump and his top aides hardly appeared inclined to more forcefully assert American power in the country. But the change seemed to emerge during a Rose Garden news conference Wednesday afternoon, as Mr. Trump reacted to news, and images, of the attack with horror and a newfound desire to respond.
In less than 24 hours, his shift was reflected at the Pentagon, where senior Defense Department and military officials began drafting options for Mr. Trump, and in Florida, where Mr. Tillerson hinted at a strong response to Mr. Assad’s actions.
In remarks late Thursday evening to a small group of reporters, recorded and quickly broadcast to the world, Mr. Trump announced his decision.
“We ask for God’s wisdom as we face the challenge of our very troubled world,” Mr. Trump said solemnly. “We pray for the lives of the wounded and for the souls of those who passed. And we hope as long as America stands for justice, then peace and harmony will in the end prevail.”
David E. Sanger contributed reporting.
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carolhathaway
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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by carolhathaway on Fri 07 Apr 2017, 07:02

So Trump ordered a missile strike against Assad.

Great!
There's no evidence that Assad has attacked his own people nor that Sarin was used.
If I remember correctly, many people were afraid of a president Hillary Clinton because she would lead the States into a war soon...
But of course it demonstrates that Trump isn't Putin's puppet , demonstrates power and strength (at least for men because the ones with the larger bombs wins - like the one with the largest penis) and detracts some people from all the inconsistences around his politics and government.

He'd said that he wants to wipe out ISIS. Does he really think that works by attacking?


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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by Katiedot on Fri 07 Apr 2017, 07:42

I'd like to resign from the human race, please.
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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by party animal - not! on Fri 07 Apr 2017, 10:05

Is this the biggest distraction so far from all his Russian dealings?  Wonder whose words they really were last night.....

But not long ago, he said this

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/donald-trump/12147515/After-tomorrow-Donald-Trump-could-be-unstoppable.html









and now he's losing the support of people like Ann Coulter

Did anyone see Hillary Clinton's brilliant talk with Nick Kristof at the Women in the World conference last night?

And this: https://twitter.com/sethmoulton/status/850158470896680960

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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by annemarie on Fri 07 Apr 2017, 11:51

Well his big thing has been to build up the armed forces, now we are for sure about to be in a war that we don't belong in again. 

I don't believe Hillary would have done this with no proof that ASSAd did anything.

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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by annemarie on Fri 07 Apr 2017, 11:56

[size=34]http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4388834/America-launches-airstrikes-Syria.html[/size]



[size=34]CAN THE PRESIDENT ATTACK ANOTHER COUNTRY WITHOUT CONGRESS? [/size]


The U.S. missile strikes Thursday on a Syrian air base were conducted without formal congressional approval. Some questions and answers about how and why presidents can conduct military action without permission from the 535 representatives of the American people.
DID CONGRESS KNOW?
Trump did let Congress know of his plans to launch 59 Tomahawk cruise missiles Thursday evening, targeting the air base from which Syrian President Bashar Assad launched a chemical weapons attack earlier this week against his own people, killing more than 80 men, women and children. A White House official said more than two dozen members of Congress, both Democrats and Republicans, were briefed Thursday by White House and Cabinet officials. House Speaker Paul Ryan, the No. 3 U.S. official, said he was among those informed. 
IS INFORMING THEM ENOUGH? DON'T THEY GET A SAY?
The War Powers Resolution, enacted in 1973, long after American troops began fighting in Vietnam, required the president to consult with Congress before sending U.S. armed forces into combat unless there already had been a declaration of war. The troops could not stay more than 90 days unless lawmakers backed the decision. The law also sought to give the president 'leeway to respond to attacks or other emergencies,' according to the Council on Foreign Relations.
And it is that leeway that presidents George W. Bush, Barack Obama and now Trump have used to their advantage. Following the Sept. 11 attacks in 2001, Congress gave Bush authority to attack any countries or groups involved in the attacks, which was generally accepted to mean al-Qaida. Obama used that same authority to fight the Islamic State militant group, which emerged in 2014 as an outgrowth of al-Qaida. Trump has used that same authority to continue military action in Iraq, Afghanistan and Syria.
The Obama administration maintained in 2011 that U.S. involvement in the months-long air campaign against Libya didn't require congressional permission because American forces were largely playing a supporting role as part of an international coalition.
In February 2015, Obama asked Congress to formally authorize war against the Islamic State, saying the militant group could threaten the U.S. homeland if left unchecked. His resolution would have limited authorization to three years, with no geographic restrictions for U.S. forces. It would have banned 'enduring offensive combat operations,' an ambiguous term that attempted to define a middle ground between Democrats leery of another protracted Middle Eastern conflict involving ground troops, and Republicans, who largely believe the U.S. needs maximum flexibility to pursue IS.
Congress held a few hearings, but never acted on the proposal.
WHAT DOES CONGRESS THINK NOW?
Sen. Bob Corker of Tennessee, the Republican chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, said before Thursday's missile launch that he thought it would be prudent to consult with Congress, but didn't insist Congress had to approve Trump's actions.
Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah, insisted that if the U.S. increased the use of military force in Syria, 'we should follow the Constitution and seek the proper authorization from Congress.' Kentucky lawmakers Thomas Massie and Rand Paul, both Republicans, agreed.
'President Trump should make his case in front of the American people and allow their elected representatives to debate the benefits and risks of further Middle East intervention to our national security interests,' Lee said in a statement.
Other Republicans, like former Trump primary opponent Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida, applauded the strikes without mentioning congressional approval.


He was frequently critical during his campaign of former president Barack Obama's failure to act militarily following Syria's 2013 chemical weapons attack, which crossed a behavioral 'red line' Obama had previously drawn.
Obama initially suggested that American bombs could start falling, but later reversed course.
Assad ultimately acknowledged the existence of what turned out to be the world's third-largest stockpile of such chemical agents, and claimed to have surrendered them.
But in 2013, citizen Trump was openly hostile to the idea of U.S. military intervention.
'The only reason President Obama wants to attack Syria is to save face over his very dumb RED LINE statement. Do NOT attack Syria,' he tweeted at the time.
'President Obama, do not attack Syria. There is no upside and tremendous downside. Save your 'powder' for another (and more important) day!' read another of Trump's Twitter messages.
Now Trump finds himself commanding about 1,000 U.S. ground troops who are already in Syria, trying to isolate the ISIS capital of Raqqa and prepare for what will likely be a fully fledged military attack. 

On Tuesday the White House had said ousting Assad unilaterally is, at its heart, impractical.
'There is not a fundamental option of regime change, as there has been in the past,' press secretary Sean Spicer said.
How Trump unleashed awesome Mediterranean arsenal on Assad: Tomahawk missiles launched from US destroyers 150 miles away with pinpoint accuracy without endangering American pilots or enraging neighbouring allies
Donald Trump unleashed his Tomahawk barrage on one of al-Assad's key bases from the sea to avoid upsetting allies and using the huge US military arsenal built up off the coast of Syria.
The US President last night fired 59 missiles at al-Shayrat military airfield near Homs overnight in retaliation for the Syrian leader's horrific chemical weapons attack on Idlib.
They were launched from his state of the art destroyers USS Ross and USS Porter which can fire dozens of Tomahawks with pinpoint accuracy from up to 1,500 miles away from their targets.



+38

Tactics: The US has a huge airforce at Incirlik Air Base in Turkey - but would have needed the country's permission to launch an attack on al-Assad's Syria

The destroyers' locations are always kept secret but are believed to have been off the coast of Turkey or Cyprus, around 150 to 200 miles away from al-Shayrat - and fired 30 minutes after they warned the Russians to keep away from the area. 
The Tomahawk is the US military's most advanced missile carrying an 1,000lb bomb and can carry an nuclear warhead. 

The US destroyers that hammered al-Assad  


[size=0]
USS Porter: U.S. Navy guided-missile destroyer USS Porter was last seen in the Bosphorus off Istanbul in February and 

USS Porter 
Captain: CDR Andria L. Slough 
Class and type: Arleigh Burke-class destroyer 

Length: 505 ft (154 m) 

Team: 270 personnel including around 60 officers  

Weapons: Two missile launching systems with the ability to fire up to 90 Tomahawk missiles. It has six large guns and two torpedo tubes
Aircraft: 2 helicopters


USS Ross: Its location is secret but it is known to be in the eastern Med

USS Ross
Captain: CDR Russell J. Caldwell 
Class and type: Arleigh Burke-class destroyer
Length: 505 ft (154 m)
Team: 210 personnel and 38 senior officers 
Weapons: Two missile launching systems with the ability to fire up to 90 Tomahawk missiles. It also has a harpoon missile launcher. It has seven large guns and two torpedo tubes
Aircraft: 2 helicopters  

 

[/size]
The one-ton missiles costing £1million each were chosen because: 

  • It can be launched from the sea to avoid using an ally's air base

  • Weapon map-reads its way to the enemy, hugging contours in the landscape, and using an on-board camera to pinpoint its target

  • Tomahawks cruise at low altitude and follow a complicated route to avoid being tracked by radar

  • Its accuracy is extraordinary, using a stored image of the target with the actual target before blowing it up


America has packed the Mediterranean with ships, submarines and aircraft with even more firepower in the Persian Gulf and the Red Sea including the USS George H.W. Bush aircraft carrier packed with jets currently battering ISIS targets.
But these ships can quickly be moved into the Med via Suez.  

In the early hours of this morning the strikes were launched and have killed at least five and destroyed more than a dozen Syrian jets, a fuel store and badly damaged the runway at al-Shayrat.
Mr Trump's decision to fire missiles from the Mediterranean was a tactical one, to avoid upsetting allies including Turkey by using their bases to launch a bombing raid by fighter jet.
The US uses the Incirlik Air Base in Turkey but last night's operation would have required President Erdogan's consent and risked a row.
Similarly any airborne sortie from bases across the Middle East could cause similar diplomatic problems.  

The United States has been fighting ISIS in Iraq and Syria since 2014, so has amassed a huge military presence and an array of capabilities in the region.
If President Donald Trump decides to launch more strikes against Syrian regime targets, the Pentagon has many ways with which to do so. 
Any strike against the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad is likely to be conducted remotely to avoid putting US pilots in harm's way.
In September 2014, US ships launched 47 Tomahawk missiles during the first night of strikes against ISIS in Syria. These missiles can also be launched from attack submarines, but the location of these vessels is secret.
A barrage of Tomahawks could overwhelm any air defenses. Assad's systems are weakened after six years of war but Russia has deployed state-of-the art systems to Syria.
Over in the Persian Gulf, the Navy's Fifth Fleet can quickly respond to military requests in the region.
The USS George H. W. Bush aircraft carrier is also in the Gulf, currently supporting operations against IS.
The bulk of US efforts against ISIS in Syria has been conducted from the air, with about 7,500 coalition jet and drone strikes since 2014.
The United States has multiple air bases at its disposal in the region, including Incirlik in southeastern Turkey, just 100 kilometers (60 miles) from the Syrian border.
Among the many air assets available to the United States are its high-tech F-22 Raptors, F-16s and even B-52 heavy bombers.
The F-22, which cost about $360million apiece, is considered the world's most advanced fighter currently operating, thanks to its ability to evade radar.
It can fly faster than Mach 2 and launch laser-guided bombs from miles away.

[size=34]Tomahawk: US fires its most advanced missile that flies low, avoids radar then obliterates its targets[/size]


[size=0]

[size=16]
+38

A Tomahawk cruise missile flies toward Iraq from the cruiser USS San Jacinto

The Tomahawk is the US military's most advanced missile, which map-reads its way to the enemy, hugging contours in the landscape and using an on-board camera to pinpoint its target.
First fired in anger during the Gulf War by the US, Tomahawks cruise at low altitude and follow a complicated route to avoid being tracked by radar. 
The American-made missile can be fired from a submarine, ship or B-52 bombers and can carry nuclear or conventional warheads.
They blast off with the aid of a rocket, then switch to a small turbofan engine to cruise to their targets - hence the name.
The fan emits little heat, making it hard to be spotted by infrared detectors. During flight, the cruise missile compares its view of the landscape with a stored map reference to continually correct its course. It has a range of up to 1,500 miles.
The weapon is perfect for the Middle East because the terrain is very flat.
As the missile nears its target, another system kicks in which compares a stored image of the target with the actual target, which the military claims ensures a high level of accuracy.
At £1 million each, the one-ton missiles do not come cheap. [/size]
[/size]
The Air Force also has at its disposal a fleet of armed Reaper and Predator drones, which use Hellfire missiles to strike targets. 
The United States has about 900 troops in Syria -- mainly special operations forces -- to help train and advise an Arab-Kurdish alliance fighting IS.
A Marine artillery unit is helping local forces near Raqa and US forces have expanded a runway at a northern Syria air base to accommodate the huge C-17 military plane, which can bring in armored vehicles and equipment.
The US also has Apache gunships in neighboring Iraq to support local troops on the ground.
 


Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4388834/America-launches-airstrikes-Syria.html#ixzz4dYmWIE6T 
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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by Donnamarie on Fri 07 Apr 2017, 13:51

I believe Trump made this calculation knowing it would primarily benefit him. It would make him look strong, not weak like Obama. It made him look decisive and swift in action. His supporters will applaud him. But there was no moral convictions at work here that drove Trump to agree to this action. You just have to look at his attempt of banning Syrian refugees to our country as evidence of that ...

The repercussions of this act are unknown. Will Assad retaliate with more attacks against his people? Will our troops be at risk there? What will Russia do? Iran?

I have really mixed feeling about this attack. It's merely a slap on the hand. It doesn't change what's going on in Syria. But in the eyes of the world it has the look of the U.S. standing up against inhumane behavior by Assad. I don't think it helps the citizens of Syria in any way. What really matters is what happens next. Maybe safe zones could be set up. Is that even possible at this stage? Could they be successful?
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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by Donnamarie on Fri 07 Apr 2017, 13:57

Hillary Clinton had an interesting discussion with Nick Kristof at the "Women in the World" summit in New York City yesterday. I think it's on YouTube.
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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by annemarie on Fri 07 Apr 2017, 14:57

I hope this is not something he will keep doing the people don't need it, and we don't need to be involved and lose more soldiers. 
Obama wasn't weak he used common sense which Trump does not have.

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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by LizzyNY on Fri 07 Apr 2017, 15:17

I hate to sound cynical, but I think his only motivation was to take the heat off himself. The question of whether we'll be drawn into a full scale war will probably push everything else to the background. He doesn't care about the Syrian people or about what Assad does to them. He has said as much. He's just looking for a way to get attention away from his own despicable behavior.
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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by carolhathaway on Fri 07 Apr 2017, 16:04

I absolutely agree with you, Donna!
If Trump really cared about the Syrian people, especially children, he wouldn't try to ban them from entering the States, putting them under general suspect.

By the way:
Somebody stole a truck in Sweden's capitol Stockholm and drove it into a crowd of people in a pedestrian zone. Up to now, the police speaks about three people who were killed and many were injured. Seems like that's a new way of terror attack (like in Nice and Berlin): trucks need to be allowed to enter certain zones to deliver goods, so you can't ban them...
One thought just hit me: Remember when Trump said"what happened in Sweden last night"? It wasn't at night but...


Last edited by carolhathaway on Fri 07 Apr 2017, 16:05; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Auto-correction is on, corrects everything into German or a fantasy language...)
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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by carolhathaway on Fri 07 Apr 2017, 16:13

Sorry, I got confused.
I wanted to refer to Lizzy's post but also agree with Donna's posts.

It's really frightening to me that Trump seems to act totally irrational and spontaneous. Last week he said he wouldn't fight Assad. Now, after this attack happened (and every other leader would have waited until it was confirmed reliably - or he had at least the permission of his government and/or parliament), and suddenly he talks about the poor Syrian Kids. Before they hadn't interested him a bit, but he saw this as an opportunity to set up himself as a strong leader and take the heat off himself.
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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

Post by Donnamarie on Fri 07 Apr 2017, 16:55

That's part of my mixed feelings about this attack carol.
I think most of here believe that this move on Trump's part was for his own selfish reasons. His motives are disingenuous. But most Members of Congress have given him credit for this retaliation. Swift and smart and sending a serious message to Assad. He's going to get kudos from many around the world for doing this. But nothing has changed as far as Trump's impulsive, erratic and lying ways.

I do think that he may have been positively influenced by McMaster and possibly others on the National Security Council to take action. But I also think Steve Bannon strongly opposed this move.

We will see if this is a one-off or if some new policy will come out of this attack.

I heard about the horrible Swedish attack. Sounds like this type of terrorism we've seen lately using vehicles as weapons is becoming a convenient tool. It's all so disgusting.
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Re: The Serious Side - part 2

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