U.S. news coverage

Do the Afghan forces have the “will” to fight the Taliban?

We have described the horrific choices facing individual Afghan soldiers and officials:

Soldiers and government officials are faced with terrifying personal choices, as it begins to look like the Taliban will take over.

They and their families are extraordinarily exposed to Taliban reprisals, and may have to make excruciating decisions about whether they can better protect themselves and their families by putting aside their weapons and acquiescing in a Taliban takeover, or by sticking with the government forces and fighting for a future under the existing government.

The surrender and withdrawal of the Americans could well have a decisive impact on their calculus.

The “will” that may proive to be the decisive determinant of the future of Afghanistan is not that of the Afghan soldier or government official, but rather that of Joe Biden and the government and people of the United States.


EMERGENCY: The U.S. and NATO must reengage in Afghanistan NOW

“The Afghan government could fall quickly,” The Trenchant Observer, July 5, 2021, updated July 21, 2021.

We are appalled, looking at the debacle in Afghanistan triggered by President Biden’s disastrous decision to surrender and withdraw from the country. Biden, instead of conducting a serious policy review and listening to his generals and senior advisers, simply followed his gut and proceeded with the implementation of Dondald Trump’s February 29, 2020 surrender nd withdrawal agreement with the Taliban. Biden didn’t even replace Zalmay Khalilzad, Trump’s ambassador in charge of the Doha negotiatons.

Biden’s failure to replace Khalilzad was powerful evidence that he didn’t want a serious review of the policy represented by the February 29,, 2020 agreement. That agreement is one of the most shameful international agreements ever entered into by the United States.

Trump didn’t give a hoot about Afghanistan, but rather signed the agreement with the Taliban in the hopes of bolstering his presidential campaign by keeping one of his promises.

The agreement itself was scandalous, exchanging unilateral American (and NATO) troop withdrawal for vague promises by the Taliban not to let the territory of Afghanistan be used by terrorist groups attacking the U.S. and its allies, and to enter into negotiations with the Afghan government for a political settlement of the nearly 20 year-old conflict.

Biden and the U.S. knew that once the withdrawal of U.S. forces was set in stone the Taliban would have no incentives for good-faith negotiations with the elected government of President Ashraf Ghani. The facts have proven that to be the case.

The disastrous nature of Biden’s decision to implement Trump’s surrender and withdrawal agreement with the Taliban has been recognized by virtually all serous military and foreign policy experts with deep knowledge of and experience in Afghanistan.


The dog days of August and the Olympic Games: Time to act on Trump and the Republican fascist threat

See Jonathan Freedland, “Trump may be fading away, but Trumpism is now in the American bloodstream; He left in disgrace, yet all signs point to…


Should Trump be indicted? REVISED — A comprehensive evaluation of the arguments

A fundamental norm of a democratic state governed by law is that the authors of serious crimes must be prosecuted and sent to prison if found guilty. This rule should apply no matter who they are.

Both President Joe Biden and Attorney General Merrick Garland have solemnly stated (Garland under oath) that they would not let political considerations influence Department of Justice decisions on whether or not to prosecute individuals.

Both Biden and Garland have violated these promises, in a most egregious and blatant manner, by refusing to prosecute Donald Trump and his co-conspirators.

There appears to be an iron-clad agreement between President Biden, Attorney General Garland, and Democrats in Congress, not to raise this issue, that is, not to even talk about it.

What, indeed, might be the arguments against prosecuting Trump and his Republican co-conspirators?

As there has been virtually no public discussion of the reasons that have led the Democrats to refrain from indicting Trump and his co-conspirators for their apparent crimes, the disadvantages of this course of action have not been articulated or discussed seriously in the media.


The Afghan government could fall quickly

A thousand Afghan military have crossed over into Tajikistan, seeking asylum. They were fleeing the Taliban, who have cut off access to Badakhshan province, including access to the regional center of Konduz in the North. The Washington Post’s Berger reports:

It looks like Biden, unless he changes course on Afghanistan, will, like Lyndon Johnson, be remembered for his disastrous military and foreign policy decisions, and not for his domestic accomplishments.


IMPUNITY: The biggrest and most important story no one will cover

IMPUNITY: The biggrest and most important story no one will cover

When will Trump be indicted?

Why are we asking this question five months after Democratic President Joe Biden has been in office?

A Pulitzer Prize is waiting for the Newspaper or Magazine that will field a news team to take this story on.

The Biden administration and Merrick Garland’s Justice Department have not convened grand juries and indicted Donald Trump and his Republican co-conspirators for the many electoral crimes and other crimes they committed in what amounted to a vast Republican conspiracy to overthrow the election and the Constitution.

All the attention has been diverted to the Capital Insurrection on January 6 and the violent demonstrators who seized the Capitol. Attention of the media has focsed on the foot soldiers, and not the generals who sent them into battle. Trump and his Republican co-conspirators commited many acts of intimidation of election officials, and other acts of obstruction of justice. Why have Biden and Garland not prosecuted these crimes?

It as if some foreign country that is an enemy of democracy had launched a massive missile attack on the United States that unleashed a tasteless, odorless gas on the entire population, causing total amnesia regarding certain tenets of democracy and the rule of law.

One such bedrock principle of the rule of law is that crimes must be punished, suspected criminals must be indicted and tried, and, when found guilty, sent to prison.

If Trump gave us the Normalization of the Unthinkable and the Normalization of the Unforgivable, President Joe Biden and Attorney General Merrick Garland have given us the Normalization of Impunity.


Which newspaper or magazine or news team will go after the Pulitzer that is just sitting there, like on a table, waiting for someone to pick it up?


REPRISE: When will Trump be indicted?

Putting all of these actions together, it appears that Donald Trump led a vast conspiracy, in which he enlisted the support and cooperation of Republican federal, state, and local legislators and officials, to overthrow the results of the November 3 presidential election and, consequently, the Constitution of the United States.

Why have we heard virtually nothing about federal or state grand juries investigating these alleged crimes?

There have been only a few exceptions, such as the grand jury in Atlanta where a courageous prosecutor is investigating a blatant case of apparent election interference for which there is recorded and public evidence.

Why indeed has former President Donald Trump not yet been indicted for the many crimes he has apparently committed?

When will he be indicted?

Moreover, when will his many Republican co-conspirators and accomplices in these apparent crimes be investigated and themselves indicted?

What is going on?

We are all tired of thinking about Trump and his crimes. However, democracy is a very fragile flower, and we have just seen how close we can come to losing it. If America’s first fascist president, and the many members of the Republican Party who engaged in a vast conspiracy to overthrow the Constitution, are not held accountable before the courts for the very numerous crimes which they committed, the lesson of political impunity will not be lost on others.

Americans who are too cowardly to defend American democracy by prosecuting, and insisting on the prosecution of, those who have committed criminal acts in furtherance of the Republican conspiracy to overthrow the Constitution, will have only themselves and their own passivity to blame if it is lost.


America has become a Country of the Absurd

Reprinted, with permission, from ABSURARAMA! June 6, 2021. In the United States, perhaps 50-70 million voters, including a vast majority of Republican voters and almost…


Gov. Cuomo–Democracy and rule of law, or cancel culture: We must choose

The current campaign to force Gov. Andrew Cuomo to resign may lead to his impeachment, but is not likely to lead to his conviction and imprisonment for a crime.

Instead, he is the latest object of a phenomenon in the United States, and some other places, which seeks to bypass legal and constitutional processes to achieve the immediate objective of a frenzied mob, often made possible or strengthened through the internet and social media. Non-public and dark forces may be behind some of these campaigns.

In the United States, at least three different “mobs” have contributed to what is often termed “cancel culture”, the abuse of power to achieve goals without due process and without following legally-established procedures for determining the truth of allegations, and determining appropriate and proportionate sanctions for crimes or infractions that may be found to have occurred.

(T)he critical distinction between predatory sexual conduct–the coercion of a woman by a man to engage in sexual intercourse or other sexual conduct, on the one hand, and sexually inappropriate speech or other conduct (measured by contemporary standards), such as touching or verbal comments, on the other, has frequently been lost.

The Democrats, and their cancel culture mobs, are serving up a powerful cultural wedge issue for the Republicans to exploit.

So, small-minded and cynical Democrats are now endorsing mob action and circumvention of rule of law procedures to not only ascertain the veracity of the allegations against Cuomo–including those concerning nursing home death statistics, but also the nature of the punishment that would be proportionate and appropriate for the alleged infractions, should he be found guilty as charged.



In Memoriam: The Republican Party (March 20, 1854-February 13, 2021)

While severely ailing for the last four years, The Republican Party entered its death throes and died on February 13, 2021.
This constitutional argument had been twice rejected by the full Senate, which under the Constitution has the sole authority to determine how it will proceed in impeachment cases.

Consequently, not only did the 43 Republican Senators violate their oaths of office and their oaths to do impartial justice, but they also violated the Constitution’s provision that the Senate is the sole arbiter of how it should proceed in an impeachment case, and the decision on constitutionality the Senate reached in exercising that power.
Journalist’s have been too intellectually lazy to understand and
report these details. Instead, they glibly write that Republican Senators who voted to acquit Trump justified their actions on a “technicality”.

Far from being a “technicality”, the bad-faith argument these apologists for Trump used to try to hide their craven cowardice involved fundamental precepts of the Constitution, including binding Senate determinations of whether the trial was constitutional or not.
Although the House Impeachment Managers lost their case for conviction in the Senate, they put forth a brilliant case, which convinced 57 of the 100 Senators to vote to impeach Trump.

Now, the battle must be taken to the court of public opinion, and to the polls in 1922, 1924, 1926, and beyond.