Trump and NATO

Posted July 27, 2016 by danmillerinpanama
Categories: 2016 elections, Donald Trump, Europe, European military, NATO

Tags: , , , ,

Trump and NATO, Front Page MagazineBruce Thornton, July 27, 2016

trump nato

The Never Trump crowd has found another example of The Donald’s disqualifying ignorance: comments he made about NATO. He has said that our contributions to NATO are “unfair,” that they are “costing us a fortune,” that we are “getting ripped off,” and that they are “getting a free ride.” By the way, Obama in his Atlantic interview also called the Europeans “free riders,” but I don’t recall a lot of sneering at the president for his “alarming” and “dangerous” remarks, as one critic put it.

Trump also implied that he would put the European NATO members’ feet to the fire about meeting the 2006 requirement that they spend 2% of GDP on their militaries, and suggested he would negotiate a new contribution schedule. Few NATO members have met that requirement, which is a violation of Article 3 that requires member states to “maintain and develop their individual and collective capacity to resist armed attack.” According to NATO’s own report, only five countries are estimated to meet the 2% requirement in 2016. France, Germany, Italy, and Spain­­––the first, third, fourth, and fifth largest economies in the EU––are not among them. The richest, Germany, is expected to remain at 1.19%. In contrast, the US will spend 3.9%. As Lord Robertson, NATO Secretary General from 1999-2004, put it, European nations are “military pygmies.”

Critics of Trump are technically correct to say that he exaggerates when he claims that the US pays the “lion’s share” of NATO funding. In fact, the US pays under a fifth (22%). But the complaints about European NATO members, which predate Trump by decades, take into account more salient deficiencies. “Common funding,” of which the US covers a fifth, is “used to finance NATO’s principal budgets: the civil budget (NATO HQ running costs), the military budget (costs of the integrated Command Structure) and the NATO Security Investment Programme (military capabilities),” according to NATO. In other words, mostly institutional bureaucratic infrastructure.

“Indirect spending” covers what each nation voluntarily contributes to an operation. NATO acknowledges the greater share the US spends on indirect spending: “there is an over-reliance by the Alliance as a whole on the United States for the provision of essential capabilities, including for instance, in regard to intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance; air-to-air refuelling; ballistic missile defence; and airborne electronic warfare.” We could also mention transport aircraft, cruise missiles, and other matériel that the European countries simply don’t have much of. For example, in the 2011 NATO bombing of Libya, there were 246 cruise missiles launched. The US fired 228 of them. At $1.5 million apiece, that adds up to $342 million taxpayer dollars spent to destabilize a country and get four of our citizens killed.

This discrepancy in indirect spending and military capability was already obvious in the 1990’s when NATO intervened in Bosnia and Kosovo to stop a vicious war. During the 1999 crisis in Kosovo, the Europeans had to make “heroic efforts” just to deploy 2% of their two million troops, according to the British foreign secretary. Historian William Shawcross writes of the bombing campaign, “The United States flew the overwhelming majority of the missions, and dropped almost all the precision-guided U.S.-made munitions, and most of the targets were generated by U.S. intelligence.”

So Trump’s complaints, as blustering and exaggerated as they may be, are legitimate. Operations conducted by NATO are overwhelmingly American funded and directed, and NATO is a diplomatic fig-leaf for American power.

No more convincing are the reasons critics give for supporting NATO. The alliance has not prevented “major state conflict since World War II,” as a writer at NRO claims. Given that some 40 million people have died in conflicts since WWII, I’m not sure what “peace” we’re talking about. During the Cold War, the peace between the US and the Soviet Union was kept by nuclear “mutually assured destruction” and millions of American troops, not NATO. Nor was Europe in any condition to fight among themselves. The Europeans were, and still are in many ways, burned out after 30 years of warring, and had neither the will, the morale, nor the belief in anything worth dying for to engage in another war. With their security underwritten by the US, they could spend their money on lavish social welfare programs and la dolce vita. Thinking NATO kept the peace is as preposterous as claiming the EU did.

Then there’s Article 5, the pledge that NATO members will fight for any member state that’s been attacked. Much is made of the only time Article 5 has been invoked, after the terrorist attacks on 9/11. Yet all that solidarity and allied good will didn’t stop France and Germany from trying to undermine the US when it tried to get the UN to sanction the war in 2003 on Saddam Hussein, who had violated 16 UN resolutions and the formal terms ending the 1991 Iraq War. Despite the consensus of American and European intelligence agencies that Hussein had WMD stockpiles, France and Germany took the lead in lobbying the Security Council to oppose the authorization to use force against Iraq.  Germany’s ambassador to the UN Council pressured members like Mexico and Chile to vote against the US. Worse yet, France and Germany, along with Belgium, formally objected to a proposal for NATO to send defensive equipment to Turkey, which wanted assurances that it would be supported by its fellow NATO members if attacked for supporting the war against Hussein.

This behavior of NATO allies did not reflect principle, but national interests and politics. German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder was running for re-election, and found reflexive German anti-Americanism and pacifism a convenient distraction from his terrible economic record. France had grubbier reasons in addition to its own ressentiment towards the US––renewing the arm sales to Iraq and oil development contracts it had enjoyed for years before the war, and could resume once the sanctions on Hussein were lifted, something France was actively pursuing. As Shawcross summarized, “The long friendship with Saddam, commercial considerations, the response to le défi Américain, and concern over the reactions of France’s Muslims––all these played a part in [President Jacques] Chirac’s calculations in the summer of 2002.”

The importance put on Article 5 forgets that, as George Washington said, “It is a maxim founded on the universal experience of mankind, that no nation can be trusted farther than it is bound by its interests.” NATO members have made and in the future will make decisions based on each nation’s estimation of its interests. So there’s no guarantee that invoking Article 5 would lead to meaningful NATO member support. And given the weakness of their militaries, just how much actual rather than rhetorical support could the Europeans provide in the event of an attack? How many battle carrier groups does NATO possess? The Europeans can’t even afford cruise missiles.

Finally, the arguments for NATO are predicated on an either-or fallacy. If we don’t have the NATO alliance and the benefits it supposedly brings for collective security, then we’ll have nothing. But of course, if NATO disappeared tomorrow, the US would quickly sign bilateral and multilateral defense agreements with individual countries or groups of countries, including some current NATO members. The argument that without NATO our security would be endangered is as fallacious as the argument of the Remain faction in England that leaving the EU would put the UK in danger. A country as rich and powerful as the US will find no dearth of countries eager to bandwagon with it.

Trump’s critics continue to search for dubious reasons to justify sitting out the election or even voting for Hillary. There may be many reasons not to vote for Trump, but criticizing NATO isn’t one of them.

Cleveland Division of Police Thank You Video- 2016 RNC

Posted July 27, 2016 by danmillerinpanama
Categories: Law enforcement, Republican National Convention

Tags: ,

Cleveland Division of Police Thank You Video – 2016 RNCCLEPolice via YouTube

Cartoons of the Day

Posted July 27, 2016 by danmillerinpanama
Categories: 2016 elections, Hillary Clinton, Humor

Tags: , ,

via Washinton Examiner e-mail

wash examiner

 

H/t Power Line

Hillary-Shining-copy

 

hillary wasserman

 

waren naziLook: Fauxchahontas plagiarizing Laura Ingraham.

 

rnc dnc

Catalonia determined to press on with Spain independence bid with or without Madrid’s consent

Posted July 27, 2016 by joopklepzeiker
Categories: Uncategorized

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Catalonia determined to press on with Spain independence bid with or without Madrid’s consent

Published time: 27 Jul, 2016 08:28

Source: Catalonia determined to press on with Spain independence bid with or without Madrid’s consent — RT News

People hold Catalan separatist flags known as “Esteladas” during a gathering to mark the Calatalonia day “Diada” in central Barcelona. © Albert Gea / Reuters

Catalonia says it is preparing to seek independence with or without Madrid’s backing. The region’s government says it would prefer to conduct cordial negotiations about a split, but that the lack of response from the Spanish capital is forcing its hand.

Speaking exclusively to the Guardian, the president of Catalonia’s parliament, Carme Forcadell, and foreign affairs minister Raul Romeva said the stance taken by Madrid has left the region with no other choice.

“The [Spanish state] has left us feeling that we just don’t have an alternative,” Romeva told the Guardian. “We have always said that we would have preferred a Scottish-type scenario, where we could negotiate with the state and hold a coordinated and democratic referendum. We keep talking to Madrid, but all we get back from them is an echo.” 

Catalonia has public opinion on its side, with a July 22 survey from the region’s official pollster showing that 47.7 percent of Catalans want independence. A total of 42.4 percent said they would prefer the region to remain part of Spain.

In December, the Spanish Constitutional Court blocked a resolution from Catalonia’s parliament calling for a secession process from Spain. However, Artur Mas – who at the time was Catalonia’s president – said the process had been annulled legally, but not politically.

“Legally, it is clear that the Catalan parliament’s resolution is now annulled,” Mas told Cadena Ser radio in December. “But politically, it is not, because the will of the parliament cannot be annulled and the will of the parliament reflects the will and the ideas of a significant part of the Catalonian population.” 

Read more

Catalan acting President Artur Mas © Albert Gea

In June, Spain’s Constitutional Court recommended that Mas and two other officials face trial for overstepping their authority after they held a mock Catalan independence referendum in 2014, despite the court placing a ban on the vote taking place.

Romeva says that the Spanish government has two options at present. The first is to accept that Catalan independence is a distinct reality. The second is to simply carry on with what it has been doing – trying to use the courts and various legal processes to stop the movement.

Over 80 percent of those who voted in the mock referendum wanted Catalonia to gain independence from Spain.

“Every action they (Madrid) take serves only to rearm us and give us greater legitimacy for what we’re doing,” Romeva said.

Romeva also believes that Spain has a democratic responsibility to adhere to the will of the Catalan people. In April, acting Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy held talks with pro-separatist leaders in Catalonia, including new Catalan President Carles Puigdemont.

However, the two sides failed to find a consensus, with Rajoy saying “we will continue to defend Spanish unity.”

“The Spanish government uses the question of legality a lot,” Romeva said, speaking to the Guardian. “But legality is an instrument; it needs to adapt to reality and to democratic will, and not the other way round. People around the world need to understand that what we’re doing is fundamentally legitimate and is not illegal.”

Meanwhile, politicians from Catalonia have pointed to Madrid attempting to use underhanded tactics when dealing with the region. Forcadell, president of Catalonia’s parliament, mentioned that Spanish interior minister Jorge Fernandez Diaz and the head of Catalonia’s anti-fraud office, Daniel de Alfonso, were caught allegedly discussing what investigations could be opened against Catalan separatist politicians.

“How can they say that when the interior minister, who’s meant to defend the interests of all citizens, is caught conspiring to find evidence against citizens solely because they think differently? How can absolutely nothing come of that? We don’t understand it,” Forcadell told the Guardian.

A Career Sexual Predator Makes the Case for Hillary at the DNC

Posted July 27, 2016 by danmillerinpanama
Categories: 2016 elections, Bill Clinton, Democrat National Convention, Democrat Party, Hillary Clinton, Sex predator

Tags: , , , , ,

A Career Sexual Predator Makes the Case for Hillary at the DNC, Front Page Magazine, Daniel Greenfield, July 27, 2016

sex perv

“Hillary Clinton took me through Hell.”

Those were the words of a woman who was raped and beaten into a coma when she was twelve years old. Instead of helping that twelve year old girl, Hillary Clinton aided her rapist. She falsely accused the abused child who would never be able to have a family of her own after the assault of “a tendency to seek out older men”. Then Hillary Clinton was recorded on tape laughing at how her client had failed a lie detector test while relishing describing how she had gotten him off.

Tonight’s Democratic National Convention theme was “A Lifetime of Fighting for Children and Families”. But this was how Hillary Clinton’s “fight” for children and families really began. And Tuesday’s highlight was an address by a career sexual predator whom she covered up for and whose victims she smeared.

That sexual predator was her husband, Bill Clinton.

Bill Clinton put even more women through hell than Hillary did. And he isn’t done just yet. Amid the freakshow of the Carter mummy phoning in, the mothers of criminals, random mildly famous celebrities, the Sandernista walkout and Howard Dean doing the scream that ended his career one more time, the other Clinton took the stage.

In an evening featuring discussions about sex trafficking, the highlight was a sexual predator. In an evening that featured 9/11 victims, the highlight was the man who left America vulnerable to 9/11 and refused to take out Osama bin Laden.

And Bill being Bill, the lying didn’t take too long to get started.

Bill Clinton told the hooting and yapping DNC audience that Hillary Clinton wanted to help child abuse victims. But a child rape victim back home knows the truth and we know the truth.  He got up on stage and lied again about the Children’s Health Insurance Program, one of those things which, like bringing peace to Northern Ireland and landing under fire in Bosnia, Hillary Clinton can’t stop lying about.

In Bill Clinton’s new version, Ted Kennedy and Orrin Hatch didn’t exist and Hillary Clinton got it all done.

But the Clintons always have a thousand new versions of every lie that they tell. And Bill’s entire speech was one big lie. The version of Hillary Clinton that he describes, an obsessive crusader for children who is also a devoted wife and mother has only one tiny problem with it. It’s an expert work of fiction.

The real Hillary Clinton hit up the Boys and Girls Club for $200K to speak for them. The real Hillary saw every non-profit organization working for education, children and any combination of the two as a piggy bank to loot for her greedy husband and herself. The real Hillary, the one revealed by the emails, is incapable of doing basic tasks and requires a horde of assistants to do anything for her.

The image of Hillary Clinton on her “hands and knees” putting liner paper in Chelsea’s dorm drawers is as real as Bill Clinton’s family values. The real Hillary Clinton requires people to pose before she steps into the picture so they don’t waste her time. The real Hillary Clinton laughed at the thought of a rapist beating a child into a coma and then getting off. The real Hillary Clinton has never met a charity she didn’t steal from. The real Hillary Clinton dislikes people and has her assistant elbow them out of the way.

Bill Clinton claimed that they never intended for Hillary to run for office in New York until New York Democrats “urged Hillary to run”. Then they offered to sell her the Brooklyn Bridge at a discount.

The Clintons didn’t move to New York for their health. They did it as part of a long term plan to get back into the White House. Tonight was a major step in the fulfillment of that plan.

Bill’s version of the Clintons, who moved to New York without ever giving thought to a political career plan, are as real as the “loving and caring” Hillary who just couldn’t stop trying to help children. When she wasn’t ripping off their charities or aiding their rapists.

It’s an insulting lie that treats the DNC audience like chumps. And it’s not the only one.

Bill claimed that Hillary “worked for farmers, for winemakers, for small businesses and manufacturers”. Hillary’s idea of a small business is a major bank or a multinational corporation. Hillary wouldn’t use a small business to clean between her toes. Not unless it could pony up a six figure check for her use.

He reeled off the usual lies about her foreign policy experience. The Iran sanctions. The worthless deal with Russia. And the even more worthless cease fire with Hamas in which the firing did not cease.

But we are told that she “put climate change at the center of our foreign policy”. That would explain why we’re losing the War on Terror.

The truth is that the Clintons are liars. That Hillary’s only qualifications for her current nomination are that she was Bill Clinton’s wife. And her only qualification to be his wife was her willingness to cover for his crimes.

Everything else is a lie.

Bill Clinton spoke one truth in his entire speech as he had Hillary suggest that “nobody would ever vote for me”. That much is true. Hillary Clinton doesn’t win votes. She wins rigged elections.

And that’s what this was.

Even in a night in which Chuck Schumer and Jimmy Carter did their best to put the DNC audience to sleep, they are still more charismatic and better speakers than Hillary Clinton.

The walkout during Hillary Clinton’s nomination left hundreds of empty seats aptly symbolizing her appeal. It doesn’t exist. It never did. America loves Hillary Clinton as much as Bill ever did.

Not even other Democrats like her.

Hillary Clinton has ruthlessly clawed her way to power. She has supporters, but no friends. After decades of victimizing women on behalf of a career sexual predator, she brought that predator up on stage to tell the world how much she loves families and children.

The best thing that can be said about the convention is that, like the rest of the Clinton campaign, it’s unremarkable. It’s bland and it’s boring. It’s full of the expected politicians and celebrities saying all the expected things about Hillary. But that’s what alibis look like. And that’s what this convention is. An alibi.

The Clintons are criminals who pretend to be activists. They’re greedy thieves who claim to want to make things better. They maintain a thin façade of normalcy as an alibi. It fooled some people a few decades ago. But it’s fooling fewer and fewer people. Even fewer and fewer Democrats.

Tonight was about making Democrats feel better about the unlikable candidate that they’re stuck with. And it didn’t work. No amount of lies about how much Hillary loves children and 9/11 victims will fix that. No amount of celebrities taking cheap shots at Trump will do it either.

Hillary barely eked out a win in a rigged election. Now she’s about to face a real one.

Pakistani ‘hate preacher’ who glorifies Islamic murder welcomed by Archbishop of Canterbury

Posted July 27, 2016 by joopklepzeiker
Categories: Uncategorized

Tags: , , , , ,

Pakistani ‘hate preacher’ who glorifies Islamic murder welcomed by Archbishop of Canterbury

ByPamela Geller on July 27, 2016

Source: Pakistani ‘hate preacher’ who glorifies Islamic murder welcomed by Archbishop of Canterbury | Pamela Geller

May o may, where are you now ?

The Islamization of Britain gallops forward. They banned me from the country for daring to oppose jihad terror and sharia, and it’s clear why: they’re embracing sharia provisions quickly and eagerly, and allowing jihad preachers to speak openly and without any hindrance. Sharia Britain will soon be a reality.

“Pakistani ‘hate preacher’ who glorifies Islamist murder welcomed by Archbishop of Canterbury,” by Tom Porter, International Business Times, July 21, 2016:

British authorities have been criticised for allowing two Pakistani clerics who led praise for an Islamist assassin to visit the UK on a seven-week preaching tour.

On Saturday (16 July), Muhammad Naqib ur Rehman and Hassan Haseeb ur Rehman arrived at London’s Heathrow Airport for a tour of mosques in cities including Birmingham, Leeds and Newcastle.

Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby welcomed Muhammad Naqib ur Rehman to Lambeth Palace on Monday to discuss subjects including countering “the narrative of extremism and terrorism” and interfaith relations.

The Muslim clerics have led a high-profile campaign in Pakistan in praise of assassin Mumtaz Qadri, who was executed in January after murdering liberal Pakistani politician Salmaan Taseer in 2011. The Punjab governor had criticised Pakistan’s strict anti-blasphemy laws, and Qadri claimed it was his religious duty to kill him….

The tour comes only months after cleric Muhammed Hanif Qureshi, who led calls for Taseer’s murder, was allowed into the UK to preach. A Facebook video shows the Rehmans preaching alongside Qureshi.

Michael Semple, an expert on Pakistan who served as deputy to the EU special representative to Afghanistan, told IBTimes UK those “preaching in favour of Mumtaz Qadri and lauding him and holding him up as a role model to be emulated by people in Pakistan or Afghanistan is something contrary to the public order and might well be illegal in Pakistan also”.

The home secretary has the authority to ban people from the country if their presence is not deemed “conducive to the public good”….

CNN Reveals The TRUE Victims Of ISIS Raid On French Church

Posted July 27, 2016 by danmillerinpanama
Categories: "Far right" parties, CNN, Islamic State, Islamic terrorism, Islamophobia

Tags: , , , ,

CNN Reveals The TRUE Victims Of ISIS Raid On French Church, Daily Caller, Rachel Stoltsoos, July 26, 2016

Muslims are the true target of the latest terror attack on a Catholic church in France, according to CNN.

In the name of the Islamic State, two Muslim men stormed a Catholic mass in Normandy Monday, took two parishioners and two nuns hostage, delivered a sermon in Arabic at the altar and then slit the throat of an elderly Catholic priest before police shot them dead. One of the hostages is in critical condition.

At least one Catholic person is dead, but according to CNN it’s Muslims in Europe who should be afraid.

“The goal in going after such a provocative target? To trigger a backlash against Muslims in France and drive the country’s Muslims into the recruiting arms of the Islamic State,” CNN surmises.

Although France is a deeply secular country, CNN concludes the attack is especially provocative because Catholicism is “still deeply entwined in the national fabric.” By attacking churches, the logic goes, ISIS is hoping to fan the flames of a religious war that will ultimately result in persecution of Muslims, which in turn will drive them right into the arms of ISIS.

The tactic is working, according to CNN, which cites a 223 percent rise in the number of anti-Muslim threats and attacks last year reported by the French Human Rights Commission. The publication does go on to discuss at length the genocide ISIS is committing against Christians in its territory, but the clear implication is that Muslims, not Christians, are threatened in Europe.

“In urging attacks on churches, ISIS is trying to eliminate what it calls the ‘grey zone’ for Muslims in the West by provoking a far-right backlash,” reports CNN. “A drumbeat of attacks in France has led to a groundswell of anti-Muslim anger, which is being stoked and exploited by far-right politicians.”


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