Earlier this week two petroleum tankers were attacked in the Gulf of Oman. President Donald Trump is placing the blame on Iran…while naturally Iran is denying any involvement. Unfortunately neither administration can be trusted to tell the truth so it is very hard to determine who is actually responsible.
And the US has released a portion of a video that purportedly shows members of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards removing unexploded mines from the side of one of the tankers. But as we know, with 21st Century technology, video is no longer a proponent of truth.
And the world isn’t helping one whit. Great Britain is siding with the US, Germany doesn’t believe the video proves anything. The explosions were supposedly caused by torpedoes and mines yet the damage is above the waterline and neither ship sank. The owners of the Japanese vessel claim their crew saw objects flying toward them before the explosions started. China says no one wants war over the issue. Europe urges restraint. The United Emirate Republics say that they have proof that the attacks were state sponsored.
So where do we go from here?
Well the president says he is willing to open talks with Iran over the issue. So lets do that. They say they didn’t do it…so let’s suspend disbelief for a time and join them in determining exactly what did happen. Include the governments of Japan and Norway whose vessels were attacked.
Continued antagonism will continue to push Iran into the Russian sphere of influence. A friendliness initiated during the Syrian civil war.
Pulling out of the Iran Nuclear Treaty has caused the European Union to develop new banking relationships and networks so they can continue to trade with Iran and circumvent Trump’s sanctions. Those two actions have weakened America’s diplomatic and economic strength in the region and may change our economic strength worldwide eventually. The Euro continues to replace the US Dollar as the currency held by foreign governments as a safe haven currency.
Opening talks with Iran is a good thing. Getting them involved in determining who attacked the tankers is a good thing. Getting the other gulf countries involved would be a good thing.
The biggest draw back (other than Trump not following through on the things he says) would be: why should Iran trust Donald Trump?
Most of you probably have read about the bust of a record amount of fentanyl at the US Mexican border. But these drugs were found in a secret compartment of a semi-trailer truck hauling fresh produce from Mexico to the US. And it was caught while crossing the border at a legal port of entry. It wasn’t being carried across the desert by a 9 year old child from Central America.
And of course the president was gloating about the bust on twitter and his back up provocateur, Kellyanne Conway chimed in. Now the president never mentioned the truck or legal port of entry…but Ms. Conway went there:
So the border patrol needs more resources…not a wall…more resources!
I think the Democrats are willing to accommodate you with more resources.
Come on guys…you need to sit down and shut up…if you aren’t going to own your own mistake:
Republican leaders of the state Legislature are blaming Democratic Gov. Tony Evers following a news report indicating Foxconn may drop its plans to build a manufacturing facility in Racine County.
“We don’t blame Foxconn for altering plans in an ever-changing technology business. It’s also not surprising Foxconn would rethink building a manufacturing plant in Wisconsin under the Evers Administration,” Assembly Speaker Robin Vos and Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald said in a joint statement about the company’s plans.
The Taiwanese tech giant will likely hire mostly engineers and researchers rather than the manufacturing workforce the project originally promised in a contract that provides the company about $3 billion in taxpayer-funded subsidies in exchange for a $10 billion facility and up to 13,000 jobs, according to a report Wednesday by Reuters.
Though Foxconn official Louis Woo told Reuters the company had concerns about the steep cost of making advanced TV screens in the United States, where labor expenses are comparatively high, the Republican leaders said, “the company is reacting to the wave of economic uncertainty” brought by Evers.
Oh wait…wasn’t there something in the laws from the Lame Duck Sessions that prevented Governor Tony Evers from interfering with the Foxconn con?
Two weeks ago I was busting Representative Bryan Steil for voting with the party to maintain the shutdown when I didn’t think he should. So today I have to thank him for going against the president and doing what is right for America.
What happened? Well the Trump regime is all gung ho to lift sanctions on one of the Russian oligarchs who support and defend the Putin regime. The House voted to maintain the sanctions by a vote of 362-53. The Democrats unanimously supported the measure and were joined by 133 Republicans…including three from Wisconsin, the aforementioned Rep. Steil plus Representatives Sean Duffy and Mike Gallagher!
Statements from our reps:
In a statement, freshman GOP congressman Steil, of Janesville, said:
“Russia poses a real and dangerous threat to the United States. Vladimir Putin cannot be trusted and has continued to undermine us, our interests, and our allies. Lifting these sanctions sends the wrong message to Moscow and our allies across the globe.”
His Republican colleague Gallagher said in statement:
“As I’ve said repeatedly, the way to hold Vladimir Putin accountable for his aggression is to penalize the oligarchs that underwrite his rule. If anything, we should be expanding sanctions on those close to Putin’s regime and their businesses.”
A minority of GOP House members sided with the Trump administration, including Wisconsin’s Glenn Grothman.
Unfortunately President Trump will still be able to lift the sanctions because this bill did not pass in the Senate…it needs 60 votes and only received 57.
The House vote will not block the administration’s policy. That’s because an effort in the U.S. Senate to block the lifting of sanctions failed Wednesday, falling three votes short of the 60 votes needed to advance
One of the senators voting to support the president in lifting sanctions was Wisconsin’s own Senator Ron Johnson who just this past July 4th earned frequent flyer miles on a trip to Russia…cause:
In a telephone town hall with constituents Wednesday, Johnson defended his vote, saying, “I am absolutely for effective sanctions that create more pain for Vladimir Putin and Russia than they create for either the U.S. or our allies. All sanctions are not the same … some actually hurt us more than they hurt Russia and actually can be used against us by Putin to increase popular opinion (against the U.S.) within Russia.” (emphasis mine…Sen. Johnson prefers phone calls to appearing in front of an audience)