World Affairs Brief, February 24, 2017 Commentary and Insights on a Troubled World.
Copyright Joel Skousen. Partial quotations with attribution permitted. Cite source as Joel Skousen’s World Affairs Brief (http://www.worldaffairsbrief.com).
This Week’s Analysis:
Trump’s Poor Replacement Choices
Why the Acosta Nomination is Bad
A Few Things Trump Has Done Right
Trump Wrong on Sweden Comment but Right About Refugee Crime
Drug War Revelation Points to CIA
Radiation Scare in Europe Mostly Hype
TRUMP’S POOR REPLACEMENT CHOICES
In the aftermath of Mike Flynn’s resignation and the withdrawal of Andrew Puzder as Labor Secretary, Trump has succumbed to nominating mainstream replacements that will not follow through with Trump’s change agenda. This sends a signal to the opposition that if they can block the nomination of Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court, they might just get a more liberal alternative. This week, I’ll detail why H. R. McMasters shows signs of being a globalist insider, and why Alex Acosta has a long history of accommodating the Left in questions of labor policy.
As a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, Herbert McMasters is being portrayed as somewhat of an outsider due to his early criticism of the Joint Chiefs of Staff during the Vietnam War. That was perhaps true as he was starting out and trying to set himself up to be an alternative view, but in his later career his outlooks followed the military mainstream, with a decided blindness toward the influence of globalism on the military and foreign policy.
His book Derelection of Duty criticizes high ranking officers of the Joint Chiefs for not standing up enough to Robert McNamara and his globalist cronies sabotaging the war effort. McMasters sees a lot of bad decision making going on, but he didn’t understand how McNamara and the others were following an agenda to tarnish US involvement in Vietnam and give future wars of liberation a bad name. He starts out focusing on Kennedy’s mistrust of the military, saying that JFK blamed the Joint Chiefs for the failure of the Bay of Pigs invasion. That simply wasn’t true. JFK knew very well that the air support was authorized by him before he went to bed. He also found out that it was McGeorge Bundy who cancelled the air support during the night while JFK slept and blamed it on the CIA. That turned Kennedy against CIA black operations, which eventually got him killed by the dark side of the US government.
But Bundy and his globalist cohorts in Kennedy’s “Brain Trust” were the real problems and Kennedy failed to see it. Bundy was the National Security Advisor of both Kennedy and Johnson and kept pushing the escalation of the Vietnam war, while engineering the military restrictions that made it impossible to win the war. McMasters fails in his book to adequately address why the military was continually restricted by these rules and who was behind them.
While McMasters gained a reputation as a critic of military higher-ups, he continued to climb the ladder of advancement due to excellent combat leadership during the Gulf war and in Afghanistan. He broke with traditional military doctrine in Afghanistan by billeting his troops in the cities rather than in bases outside, which helped gain the confidence of locals who began to turn on insurgents.
McMasters got his introduction to globalist doctrine in 2003 at the neocon-oriented Hoover Institution at Stanford, and later at the pro-globalist British International Institute for Strategic Studies in London in 2006.
Despite the globalist indoctrination, he was passed over for Brigadier General in 2006 and 2007, which is typical of how the military selection board penalizes mavericks who embarrass them. Being passed over for advancement usually spells the end of one’s career, but someone in the globalist ranks recognized McMaster’s positive reaction to globalist indoctrination in London, and reversed that move.
Why else would a dedicated globalist like John McCain praise McMasters and condemn Flynn, who was influenced by neocon and anti-Russian doctrine, but was a known outsider. As CNN reported,
“McMaster might be the 21st century Army’s pre-eminent warrior-thinker,” Ret. Lt. Gen. David Barno wrote of McMaster in an accompanying profile. He went on to call him “the rarest of soldiers — one who repeatedly bucked the system and survived to join its senior ranks… I watched senior Army generals argue over ways to end his career,” Barno added. “But he dodged those bullets.”
Actually, they did try to end his career but he was resurrected by other leaders who saw him as a globalist ally. Specifically, Secretary of the Army Pete Geren requested General David Petraeus, a known globalist, to return from Iraq to take charge of the promotion board and that’s when McMasters was promoted. You also don’t get named to Time Magazine’s list of the 100 most influential people in 2014 unless you are accepted by the insiders.
Sen. John McCain, the Republican chairman of the Armed Services Committee, a known neocon and virulent critic of Trump and Flynn, enthusiastically endorsed McMasters, calling him “an outstanding choice for national security adviser.” That’s telling, and not a good sign.
Sadly, Trump thinks this is someone who will shake things up, but the insiders know he will do so without damaging the globalist hold on institutional power. Let me give you an example of how McMasters thinks. He is revered for revising military doctrine to deal with long-term counterinsurgency warfare. But his ideas are nothing new. They were growing as a result of the Vietnam war, while I was in the Marine Corps.
You have to “win the hearts and minds” of the people in an insurgency and not simply go in and kill people. Granted, that’s what McMaster did in the city of Tal Afar in Afghanistan with success, but he mistakenly thinks you can transfer this kind of strategy to defeat ISIS. As Peter Bergen, CNN National Security Analyst wrote about the pacification of Tal Afar,
In 2005 then-Col. McMaster led the first successful full-scale battle against al Qaeda in the western Iraqi city of Tal Afar, a city of a half-million people. In his National Geographic interview, McMaster recalled that al Qaeda had turned Tal Afar into a living hell: “All the schools were closed because of violence, all the marketplaces were closed. There was no power. There was no water. The city was lifeless. People lived in abject fear.”
McMaster established 29 small outposts in the city. His regiment lived among the Tal Afar population and partnered with tribal elders to offer protection against al Qaeda. The citizens began to trust the Americans and provided them with intelligence on al Qaeda’s movements. Within a few months al Qaeda had retreated from Tal Afar.
McMaster’s approach was the exact opposite of the US strategy of the time, which was to hand over ever more control to the Iraqi army and withdraw the bulk of American soldiers to massive bases.
However, he errs when he thinks that the rise of ISIS is a symptom of Sunni unrest in Syria and Iraq. As Bergan reflects on McMaster’s ideas,
The Sunni militants that make up ISIS are not the underlying problem in Syria and Iraq, but rather they are a symptom of other deeper problems. McMaster knows that there surely will be a “son of ISIS” and a “grandson of ISIS” if there is not some kind of political solution to the wars in Syria and Iraq that produced ISIS in the first place.
These ideas are standard counter-insurgency thinking and completely untrue when it comes to ISIS. ISIS never was an indigenous rebellion but a manufactured foreign terrorist faction created by US and British intelligence with the help of the Israelis. These are mercenary’s from Tunisia, Saudi Arabia, and Libya, combined with local radical jihadists. Nobody who is defending local and ideological values goes around antagonizing the entire world, blowing up, beheading and raping Muslims and Christians alike. You don’t solve this kind of battle by “winning the hearts and minds” of terrorists, because they aren’t fighting for religion, country or family.
The bottom line is that McMaster is a closet globalist who will steer Trump into following the neocon agenda in Syria and Iran. I don’t think Trump has what it takes to resist the advice McMaster will give him. It’s likely that he’ll sabotage Trump’s plan to join forces with the Russians to eliminate ISIS. That’s part of the reason for all this anti-Russian propaganda about Russia influencing the election—to make sure Trump can’t join with them to oust ISIS.
I’m anti-Putin as far as their long term objectives to go to war with the West, but that’s not why the establishment has suddenly turned on Russia. They want this war in order to drive the West into a militarized global government, but they have to paint Russia early as the bad guy to stop the Russians from blocking the globalist agenda in Syria. McMaster recently gave a speech where he articulated his anti-Russian stance, as retold by Will Grigg of Liberty News Daily:
In a May 2016 speech to the Center for Strategic and International Studies, McMaster depicted an insurgent Moscow that was exploiting what he characterized as American complacency. [It’s actually not complacency, but decades-long permissiveness during and after the Cold War, allowing the Russians to build military might using Western trade.]
“Even though it may have been apparent, at least since 2008, that Russia was changing its geostrategic behavior [actually a resurgence of their old Soviet design that had been put on hold during the deception of the “fall.”] and engaging in … probing at the far reaches of American power, our strategic response was to accelerate our withdrawal” of combat forces from Europe, complained McMaster. “And what we’re seeing now is we’ve awakened to … this threat from Russia, who is waging limited war for limited objectives – annexing Crimea, invading Ukraine, at zero cost, and consolidating gains over that territory.” According to McMaster, “What is required is forward deterrence [and the ability] to be able to ratchet up the cost at the frontier.”
General McMaster’s perspective on Russia has earned the approval of Arizona Republican Senator John McCain, a frequent critic of President Trump who is also a passionate advocate of a more confrontational posture toward Moscow [reflecting that of another neocon, Sen. Cotton].
Republican Senator Tom Cotton of Arkansas is among the most hawkish members of Congress, particularly with respect to Iran. According to the Daily Caller, Cotton “spearheaded the effort for President Donald Trump to select Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster for the post of national security advisor” following the forced resignation of Michael Flynn. Cotton, an Army veteran who served in Iraq, reportedly considered resigning in 2007 when McMaster was passed over for a promotion.
McMaster’s hawkish posture toward Russia helps explain Sen. Cotton’s enthusiasm for his appointment. Cotton’s views toward Moscow are closer to those of his colleague from Arizona, John McCain, than those of President Trump. In January, Cotton complained to Fox News that the Obama administration had “consistently looked the other way from Russia’s provocations and aggressions” and insisted that Washington needs to impose “a sense of new boundaries” on Russian President Putin. “He needs to have a sense of boundaries and to know that costs are going to be imposed if he crosses those boundaries,” insisted Cotton.
Of course that will never happen because the globalists can’t actively confront Putin lest they be viewed as the ones starting the war. This is all talk aimed at Russian aggression in Ukraine, but it’s real aim, as I said, is to poison Trump’s ability to link up with Russia in Syria.
It is a shame that no one in the Trump administration is trying to debunk the fake intelligence about Russian interference in the election. At least they could point out the hypocrisy of the media complaining about Russian interference, when the US directly interfered in the Russian election of 1995-6.
Former Congressman Curt Weldon exposed the hypocrisy of the US claims against Russian interference by detailing this week on the Alex Jones show how the US directly went to work inside Russia to elect Boris Yeltsin. We hear all this talk about Trump talking to Alex Jones by phone but apparently no one in the administration is watching these broadcasts. If they are, why aren’t they using the information to counter the media?
Weldon related how Bill Clinton’s political advisors were sent over to Russia in 1995-6 to literally run Boris Yeltsin’s reelection campaign, and they stayed in the Presidential Hotel in Moscow. Putin has to be aware that US political advisors ran the reelections campaign of a candidate whose popularity had fallen to below 10% and had a known drinking problem. Putin was there when this was going on.
The Russians know how we reelected the guy we wanted to be president, but haven’t made an issue of that fact, in rebuttal. Why? To do so would expose to Putin’s own people that the US was complicit in helping to cover up for the phony fall of the Soviet Union.
Weldon was also on the Cox committee that investigated the theft of our technology by China. The People’s Republic of China funneled hundreds of millions of dollars into the Clinton campaigns of 1996. This article on Wikipedia will give you an idea of the massive scope of the charges and the subsequent coverups by the Clinton Justice Department. Why doesn’t the mainstream media bring up this massive interference in the US election by China, that is so well documented? They only make an issue of conspiracies that serve globalist purposes, and right now the only purpose is to keep Trump from joining with Russia to kill ISIS.