It’s easy, especially thousands of miles away, to jump onto the bandwagon of Turkey-blamers following its recent military incursion into Syria. However, Ankara has legitimate reasons for its actions. Its own national security as well as creating a sustainable solution for the Syrian refugee problem are at stake.
Turkey is not the only actor to be blamed for the mess in Syria. Major mistakes by Washington and Brussels have significantly contributed to the problem. However, Turkey, having a long border with Syria, suffers more from the instability in Syria and must act in order to secure its territory.
The United States made major mistakes in Syria.… Seguir leyendo »
President Xi Jinping believes China’s ascent to global dominance is inevitable, because its authoritarian government and socialist-market economy can better deliver technological progress and prosperity than decadent Western democracies. Established elites in the West may be proving him correct.
The euro is overvalued for the Mediterranean region and undervalued for Germany and other northern states. Consequently, Italy and others must run large trade deficits with Germany and pile up foreign debt or accept perpetual austerity and high unemployment.
Eurozone rules strictly limit national deficits. When the League and Five Star Movement won enough seats to form a coalition government that would break Italy loose from those rules, Sergio Mattarella — president and de facto protector of the establishment — refused permission to form a government unless the coalition effectively pledged not to implement policies that could eventually exit the country from the euro and EU.… Seguir leyendo »
Most people want to survive. What could be more natural than that? Most peoples want to survive, too. That’s no less natural.
For a thousand years, the lands inhabited by the Hungarian people have been invaded, their settlements sacked, men, women and children enslaved and slaughtered. Mongols, Ottomans, Nazis and Soviets were among those who conquered and ruled the Hungarians. Somehow, they’ve survived.
Hungarians today, a clear majority, believe their national existence — their unique identity, language, culture and traditions — is threatened again. This time, however, it is not by nomads on horseback or soldiers in tanks. It is by German Chancellor Angela Merkel and the European Union.… Seguir leyendo »
Results in Ukraine’s first round of presidential balloting yielded no surprise with TV actor and comedian Viktor Zelenskiy placing first with 30 percent of the vote. Instead, the surprise was his margin over the sitting president, Petro Poroshenko, who received about 16 percent. Ukraine’s constitution requires a winner receive more than 50 percent of all ballots cast, so these two candidates will be the only contenders in a final vote on April 21. Mr. Zelenskiy is favored to win election to the five-year term.
At 41, Mr. Zelenskiy is 12 years younger than Mr. Poroshenko and has no political experience. What he does have is what every politician wants: extensive name recognition.… Seguir leyendo »
With very few exceptions, liberals in the United States favor high levels of immigration; and the American left goes further, calling to “Abolish ICE” (a reference to Immigration Customs and Enforcement, America’s border security agency). But developments in Europe suggest this near-unanimity could one day shatter.
Since the end of World War II, Europe’s left has overwhelmingly seen the free movement of labor and immigration as the best ways to challenge corporate interests; in the words of progressive writer David Adler (on whose article, “Meet Europe’s Left Nationalists,” I have relied here), these “hastened the pace of history and heightened capitalism’s contradictions.”
Accordingly, the left helped build the European Union and then pass the 1985 Schengen Agreement (that virtually eliminated internal borders among 26 European countries with a population of more than 400 million).… Seguir leyendo »
An Alabama woman, who willingly left her family to join the Islamic State, also known as ISIS, is now begging to return home to the United States. The simple answer to that? No.
As the Sun reported, “An American ISIS bride who once called for Muslims to ‘spill American blood’ is now begging U.S. authorities for the chance to return home to Alabama. Hoda Muthana was 20 when she used her college tuition money to join ISIS in 2014, during which she became one of ISIS’s most vocal agitators with a series of blood-curdling Twitter posts.”
As President Trump’s successful destruction of ISIS in Syria continues, these women are now being captured, in Ms.… Seguir leyendo »
Pope Francis is increasingly showing his hand. He came into the papacy promising to clean up the church, especially on matters of sexual abuse. In doing so, he raised hopes among the laity, especially in America and Latin America. He said all the right things or at least many of the right things. He traveled the world. Now it is increasingly obvious that he means none of it.
Pope Francis comes from Argentina. Yet, the more I see of him he looks and sounds like a fat alderman from Chicago. He is slippery, evasive, and I think we all know where he is going to go.… Seguir leyendo »
In Warsaw last week, the Trump administration convened a conference on peace and security in the Middle East. The two-day ministerial did not change the world. But it did highlight significant ways in which the world has changed.
Envoys arrived from more than 60 countries, including 10 Arab nations. The one head of state was Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who was clearly pleased to be getting together with his neighbors. And they did not seem displeased to be getting together with him.
For this significant change there is a simple explanation: The Arab states and the Jewish state agree, as does the current U.S.… Seguir leyendo »
For a half-century, Qatar has been a tiny, desert oasis for the Muslim Brotherhood and many of the world’s most virulent Islamists. In the 1960s, as Egypt’s Gamel Abdel Nasser once again banned and cracked-down on the Brotherhood, thousands of the group’s agitators, clerics, and community organizers were forced to retreat elsewhere into the Middle East, Europe, and North America.
Since then, Qatar has been the Brotherhood’s most hospitable base of operations. In time, Brotherhood Islamism would soon emerge as Qatar’s de-facto state ideology, as the ruling al-Thani family welcomed the Islamists with lavish funding, the highest state honors, and the establishment of new Islamist institutions that would seek to indoctrinate thousands.… Seguir leyendo »
We need to stay in Syria, and it has very little to do with ISIS.
In many ways, President Trump’s foreign policy in the Middle East and Afghanistan is admirable. He is attempting to end the “endless” wars in Afghanistan, Iraq, and now Syria. He wants to make a clean break with his predecessors who he believes embroiled the nation in conflicts where the United States had limited control over success or failure. President Trump’s approach is to bring the troops home, while relying primarily on airpower to deter aggression in the region.
If successful, the drawdown would theoretically allow Mr.… Seguir leyendo »
There are reasons for concern about a second U.S.-North Korea summit. If there is no tangible movement on denuclearization, public support for dialogue with North Korea will erode quickly, with the potential for a return to a policy of “maximum pressure.” If this were to happen, it would be a major diplomatic failure with far reaching consequences.
In 2017, when North Korea had 18 ballistic missile launches, to include two intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBM) launches capable of reaching the United States, and a test of a thermonuclear warhead, the prospect of military conflict with North Korea was real.
Fortunately, Kim Jong-un quickly pivoted, in his January 2018 New Year’s address, to an appeal for better relations with South Korea and the United States, stating that a nuclear North Korea could now focus exclusively on economic development.… Seguir leyendo »
Bahrain has been a crossroads of commerce and culture since the ancient Greeks. Today, it remains a melting pot, the tolerant home to many religions and ethnicities. Christians, Hindus, Jews and others worship openly alongside their Muslim brothers. All cultures are respected.
Pope Francis’ recent visit to the United Arab Emirates — the first by any pope to the Gulf region — was remarkable. As Vatican flags flew on the peninsula where Islam was born, the leader of the Roman Catholic Church joined a prominent imam to preach love, peace and religious pluralism.
This inspiring message should reverberate around the world and encourage the world to look at the region a little closer than they have.… Seguir leyendo »
When Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina was elected in 2009, she promised to reduce poverty, stimulate growth and propel her then-impoverished nation into the digital age. Over the last decade, she has done exactly that.
Per capita income has nearly tripled. Instances of extreme poverty have been halved. Women are far better educated, safer and more prosperous than their mothers. No wonder the prime minister and her Awami League party were overwhelmingly re-elected in December for a third consecutive term.
Some in the international media found it hard to believe that Bangladeshi voters could back one party so thoroughly. A closer look at the polls and how much life has improved in Bangladesh over the last 10 years removes that doubt.… Seguir leyendo »
President Trump, born in 1946, now has another opportunity to go to Vietnam.
At his State of the Union address Tuesday night, the president announced his long-awaited second summit with North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un. It will be held at the end of the month in Vietnam, he said. While Mr. Trump did not disclose the specific location of the meeting, the confab will be in the coastal city of Da Nang, according to multiple sources.
The choice of venue is instructive. Da Nang, a bustling city about halfway between Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City (nee Saigon), combines industry and shipping with resort amenities and beaches.… Seguir leyendo »
To Brexit, or not to Brexit, that is the question (apologies to Shakespeare). The answer to whether the U.K. will pull out of the European Union as a majority of voters favored in a 2016 referendum will be decided this month. Maybe.
Prime Minister Theresa May told Parliament that debate on the deal would resume on Jan. 7. She has scheduled a vote for the following week. The vote had originally been set for Dec. 11, but Mrs. May pulled it, fearing the measure would be soundly defeated. She has been engaged since then in intense lobbying with parliamentarians who favor staying within the European Union.… Seguir leyendo »
During the 74-year nuclear era, the world has struggled ceaselessly to find a way to keep nuclear weapons under control. This now appears to be within reach — if America has the vision to seize it.
Nukes are not the ultimate evil, as some would have us believe. They’re tools, like others man has created, from dynamite to poisonous medications, which can be used for good or bad.
Consider the history of nuclear weapons. First the good side:
In WWII nukes saved a million U.S. servicemen’s lives, and 10 million Japanese lives, by preventing the invasion of Japan.
The landmark Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT) of 1970 has been immensely effective in controlling proliferation of nukes.… Seguir leyendo »
National elections are seven weeks away and Moldova is frankly at a crossroads. One path will take us backward, back into the bosom of a failing, corrupt Russia run by Vladimir Putin and his henchmen. Socialism has failed, politically, economically and socially; we cannot go back. The other path surges us forward — with Democratic government, transparency, free markets, jobs, economic growth and a seat at the global table that will benefit all Moldovans.
As I flew back from Washington earlier this month, I was encouraged by the ever-stronger ties between Moldova and the United States. It was my third trip this year, and I am tremendously proud of the progress in our partnership.… Seguir leyendo »
And you think we’ve got it bad. We have the chaotic confusion over counting votes from the elections in Florida (so what else is new?), Robert Mueller’s endless pursuit of Donald Trump (or someone), heartbreak over a television reporter’s attempt to mount a coup from the White House press lounge, whether Maxine Waters will like the curtains in her big new office, and whether a new congresswoman-elect from the Bronx, can scrape together enough money to rent an apartment in Washington, where rents are higher than she expected.
All sad, of course, but we should consider the plight of our cousins in Old Blighty, if only to make ourselves feel a little better.… Seguir leyendo »
The group of illegal migrants continues to cross Mexico toward the United States. President Trump is deploying more than 5,000 troops to the border. The Mexican government has not been able to turn the group around toward their own countries, and they persist in defying multiple laws in their stated efforts to breach the U.S.-Mexico border.
The Mexican government has offered legal status and jobs to those who will stay in Mexico, but most insist that they will not stop until they reach the United States.
American leftists claim that these people are refugees seeking asylum in America, yet the constant refrain from those in the invading mob is that they want jobs in the United States.… Seguir leyendo »
Speaking to the U.N. General Assembly last week, Qatari Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani promised that his country would soon hold an international conference on the scourge of hacking and cyberwarfare.
That’s excellent. Qatar is the perfect country to host such a confab. The regime’s officials could give speeches about how they recruit hackers and select their targets; the cyber mercenaries on Qatar’s payroll could discuss their career paths in hacking the citizens of foreign countries; and the American media consultants who work for Qatar could hold a panel discussion on how to successfully pitch and place hacked emails to and in the American media.… Seguir leyendo »