Twisted, Twisted, Twisted

The political left has been trying to impeach President Trump since the day he was elected. Those efforts have been futile, although extremely expensive to the American taxpayer. The latest effort describes a so-called ‘whistleblower’ reporting on what he considered an alarming conversation between the President and a world leaders. The mainstream media has strategically leaked that the world leader was from Ukraine and President Trump asked for a corruption investigation into the antics of Hunter Biden (Joe Biden’s son, not known for his upstanding lifestyle). These efforts are beginning to look like those used by Wile E. Coyote to catch the roadrunner.

The Atlantic posted an article today with the headline, “If This Isn’t Impeachable, Nothing Is.” Wow. They’re got him dead to rights now. Except for a few things left out of the story.

The Atlantic reports:

Now, however, we face an entirely new situation. In a call to the new president of Ukraine, Trump reportedly attempted to pressure the leader of a sovereign state into conducting an investigation—a witch hunt, one might call it—of a U.S. citizen, former Vice President Joe Biden, and his son Hunter Biden.

As the Ukrainian Interior Ministry official Anton Gerashchenko told the Daily Beast when asked about the president’s apparent requests, “Clearly, Trump is now looking for kompromat to discredit his opponent Biden, to take revenge for his friend Paul Manafort, who is serving seven years in prison.”

The Conservative Treehouse reported today:

In what appears to be an effort to extract Ukraine from the toxic environment of American media fake political news, Ukrainian Foreign Minister Vadym Prystaiko discusses the phone call between President Donald Trump and President Volodymyr Zelensky.

Minister Vadym Prystaiko was a participant in the discussions between the U.S. and Ukraine and has specific knowledge of the phone call. Minister Prystaiko says the phone call was long, friendly and covered a variety of important issues. There was no undue pressure or “coercion” from U.S. President Donald Trump.

The article includes a video:

 

It gets even more interesting. The Conservative Treehouse also reported:

The government of Ukraine under both Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, and now President Volodymyr Zelensky, had been trying to deliver information about Obama officials and Democrat party officials (DNC on behalf of Hillary Clinton) requesting the government of Ukraine to interfere in the 2016 election.

Both Poroshenko and Zelensky administrations had tried, unsuccessfully, to get information to current U.S. officials. U.S. State Department officials in Ukraine were refusing to give visa’s to Ukrainian emissaries because they did not want the damaging information sent to the President Trump administration.

Failing to get help from the U.S. State Department, the Ukranians tried a workaround, and hired a respected U.S. lawyer to hand deliver the documentary evidence directly to the U.S. Department of Justice. The contracted American lawyer hand-delivered the information to the U.S. Department of Justice in New York.

However, after delivering the information and not hearing back from the U.S. government, the Ukrainian government, now led by President Zelensky, interpreted the silence as the Trump administration and U.S. government (writ large) being upset about the Ukraine involvement overall. Out of concern for a serious diplomatic breakdown, the Zelensky administration made a personal request to the U.S. State Department for assistance.

About those impeachable offenses… The Acme Explosives Kit just blew up in Wile E. Coyote’s face.

Fact-Checking The Lies

I really hate being lied to. I also hate it when a source that should be reliable lies to me in order to convince me to take a stand on an issue. Unfortunately that has become a way of life for some of the mainstream media. The latest example illustrates that there might be some panic associated with having an attorney general who believes in the rule of law involved in the Epstein case.

The Gateway Pundit reported today:

The Fake News Liberal Media claimed that AG Bill Barr’s father worked with Jeffrey Epstein as a school teacher and therefore AG Barr should recuse himself from the Epstein case.  Of course, it’s just another liberal lie.

The article then goes on to report the actual facts:

The fake news New York Times reported in February 1974 that Bill Barr’s father had resigned from the elite school

…The far left Daily Beast reported that Epstein did work at the school but he didn’t work there until after the summer of 1974 –

 

 AG Bill Barr’s father couldn’t have worked with Epstein at Dalton School because he wasn’t even there when Epstein worked there.  He resigned months earlier.

So I guess there is no reason for Attorney General Barr to recuse himself. But how many people are mistakenly going to believe what they heard on the news? This sort of reporting is a threat to our republic–misinformed voters can be manipulated to vote any way a dishonest media wants them to vote.

I Thought Diplomats Were Supposed To Be Diplomatic

The U.K. Telegraph posted an article today about Secretary of State John Kerry’s recent remarks about Israel.

Yesterday the Washington Times reported on John Kerry’s remarks:

Mr. Kerry told senior officials during a closed meeting on Friday that a two-state solution is the “only real alternative” for Israel and the Palestinian territories, “because a unitary state winds up either being an apartheid state with second-class citizens, or it ends up being a state that destroys the capacity of Israel to be a Jewish state,” The Daily Beast first reported.

It might be a good idea to mention at this point that Arabs who live or work in Israel have more freedom than their brothers anywhere else in the Middle East.

The U.K. Telegraph explains the problem with Secretary Kerry‘s remarks:

The use of such undiplomatic language also distracts from the very real difficulties the Israelis face in trying to reach an agreement. From the outset, Israel’s security concerns have dominated the discussions, with their negotiators offering to make painful territorial concessions in return for cast-iron guarantees concerning the future safety of Israeli citizens. But Mr Abbas’s refusal to allow Israel to maintain a limited military presence in any future independent Palestinian territory, together with his recent accord with Hamas, has meant that no such pledges have been forthcoming, thereby causing the talks to stall. Israel argues, with some justification, that there is little likelihood of reaching an agreement with an organisation such as Hamas, which remains committed to the destruction of the Jewish state. If Mr Kerry still wants his bold peace initiative to succeed, then he would be better advised to address these and other concerns than to use language that is guaranteed to cause offence to Israel.

Secretary Kerry says that he wants peace in the Middle East. What he does not seem to understand is that only one of his negotiating partners shares that goal. Before accepting the Palestinians as good-faith negotiators, Secretary Kerry needs to take a close look at their educational system. The Palestinian schools include terrorist training for kindergartners, maps without Israel, and teaching anti-Semitism. In a rational world, that would disqualify them as acceptable negotiators for peace. Unfortunately, the Obama Administration does not live in the rational world.

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Giving Away The Store

One of the major threats to world peace is the acquisition of nuclear weapons by Iran. Because of that threat, most of the world has agreed to impose economic sanctions against Iran until Iran abandons its nuclear program. Unfortunately, Iran is not likely to do that.

The Daily Beast posted a story revealing that Obama administration began softening sanctions on Iran after the election of Iran’s new president in June.

As I quoted in an article posted on June 17th (rightwinggranny.com):

Ultimate power in Iran rests in any case with Mr. Khamenei and his fellow clerics, who are backed by the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, which has expanded its control over business and other parts of society in recent decades. Iran today is best understood as a Shite fascist state with a democratic electoral veneer and ambitions to dominate the region.

Lifting the sanctions on Iran will most surely result in a nuclear Iran.

The article at the Daily Beast reports:

A review of Treasury Department notices reveals that the U.S. government has all but stopped the financial blacklisting of entities and people that help Iran evade international sanctions since the election of its president, Hassan Rouhani, in June.

On Wednesday Obama said in an interview with NBC News the negotiations in Geneva “are not about easing sanctions.” “The negotiations taking place are about how Iran begins to meet its international obligations and provide assurances not just to us but to the entire world,” the president said.

The article goes on to explain the Obama Administration’s justification for loosening the sanctions.

The thing we need to remember about Iran is that ultimately the clerics control Iran. No one gets to be President of the country unless he has shown loyalty to the clerics and the clerics approve. There was an election, but the government of Iran has not changed. The goal of the leaders of Iran is still a world-wide caliphate. We need to consider that fact when we deal with Iran.

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Unfortunately This Is Not A Surprise

Yesterday’s Daily Beast reported that Secretary of State John Kerry has cleared the Benghazi officials placed on administrative leave by Hillary Clinton after the terrorist attack on the U.S. mission in Benghazi. The four State Department officials come back to work at the State Department starting today.

The article reports:

Last December, Clinton’s staff told four mid-level officials to clean out their desks and hand in their badges after the release of the report of its own internal investigation into the Benghazi attack, compiled by the Administrative Review Board led by former State Department official Tom Pickering and former Joint Chiefs Chairman Ret. Adm. Mike Mullen. Those four officials have been in legal and professional limbo, not fired but unable to return to their jobs, for eight months… until today.

Former Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Raymond Maxwell, the only official from the State Department’s Near Eastern Affairs bureau to lose his job over the Benghazi attack, told The Daily Beast Monday he received a memo from the State Department’s human resources department informing him his administrative leave status has been lifted and he should report for duty Tuesday morning.

No explanation, no briefing, just come back to work. So I will go in tomorrow,” Maxwell said.

This a classic cover-up operation. Choose four scapegoats, wait until the scandal is no longer on the front pages of the newspaper, and then re-instate them. The article mentions that none of the four officials will be able to get his previous job back.

The article concludes:

There was also concern in Congress that only mid-level officials with little direct responsibility for the Benghazi attack had been taken out of their jobs following the ARB report release.

“The ARB tried to blame everyone but hold no one responsible, except for some of the lower level people who were not in control of the situation,” Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-UT), chairman of the House Oversight National Security subcommittee, told The Daily Beast in May.

Unless Congress develops a backbone and truly investigates what happened at Benghazi and why, this scandal will fade quietly into the sunset. This is what happens when organizations investigate themselves.

 

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The Signs Were There–We Just Ignored Them

Kirsten Powers posted an article at the Daily Beast today entitled, “How Hope and Change Gave Way To Spying on the Press.” She does a very good job of explaining how we got from hope and change to threatening James Rosen with criminal prosecution for investigative reporting. Brit Hume pointed out on Special Report last night that in the past when the government pursued a leak, they prosecuted the leaker–not the reporter. It is very unusual to threaten to prosecute the reporter. I also should mention that the government’s invasion of Mr. Rosen’s privacy during this investigation is stunning.

So how did we get here?

Kirsten Powers explains:

It was 2009, and the new administration decided it was appropriate to use the prestige of the White House to viciously attack a news organization  – Fox News – and the journalists who work there. Remember, they had barely been in office and had enjoyed the most laudatory press of any new president in modern history. Yet, even one outlet that allowed dissent or criticism of President Obama was one too many. This should have been a red flag to everyone, regardless of what they thought of Fox News. The math was simple: if they would abuse their power to try and intimidate one media outlet, what made anyone think they weren’t next?

The article relates the various comments by administration spokesmen that Fox News was not a valid news outlet. It also points out that only one journalist questioned what was going on:

Yet only one mainstream media reporter – Jake Tapper, then of ABC News – ever raised a serious objection to the White House’s egregious and chilling behavior. Tapper asked future MSNBC commentator and then White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs: “[W]hy is [it] appropriate for the White House to say” that “thousands of individuals who work for a media organization, do not work for a ‘news organization’?” The spokesman for the president of the United States was unrepentant, saying: “That’s our opinion.”

Obviously, they are entitled to their opinion. What they are not entitled to is to use the power of the government against a news organization that does not agree with everything they are doing.

The article goes on to cite the latest example of the White House targeting those news reporters that do not agree with their politics. Media Matters, a Democratic advocacy group, has launched a smear campaign against Jonathan Karl after his recent reporting on Benghazi. A group called Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting (FAIR) has referred to Jonathan Karl as “a right wing mole at ABC News.” If you don’t tow the line, you must be a right wing mole. Right.

Kirsten Power rightfully concludes:

What all of us in the media need to remember – whatever our politics – is that we need to hold government actions to the same standard, whether they’re aimed at friends or foes. If not, there’s no one but ourselves to blame when the administration takes aim at us.

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This Is Disturbing

There are three major stories on the Internet today dealing with the attack on the American embassy in Libya and the death of American Ambassador Chris Stevens. The stories are at the Washington ExaminerBreitbart.com, and The Daily Beast.

The Washington Examiner reports:

“In addition, multiple U.S. federal government officials have confirmed to the Committee (House Oversight and Government Reform Committee) that, prior to the September 11 attack, the U.S. mission in Libya made repeated requests for increased security in Benghazi,” Issa and Chaffetz added (my emphasis). “The mission in Libya, however, was denied these resources by officials in Washington.”

The committee noted 13 “security threats” in Benghazi, including an attempt to assassinate the British ambassador to Libya.

Breitbart lists the attacks prior to September 11:

  • April 6, 2012 – An IED is thrown over the consulate fence in Benghazi.
  • April 11, 2012 – A gun battle 4km from the Benghazi consulate.
  • April 25, 2012 – A US Embassy guard in Tripoli is detained at a militia checkpoint.
  • April 26, 2012 – A fistfight escalates into a gunfight at a Benghazi Medical University and a US Foreign Service Officer in attendance is evacuated.
  • April 27, 2012 – Two South African contractors are kidnapped in Benghazi, questioned and released.
  • May 1, 2012 – Deputy Commander of the local guard force in Tripoli is carjacked and beaten.
  • May 22, 2012 – RPG rounds are fired at the Red Cross outpost in Benghazi.
  • June 2012 – A pro-Gaddafi Facebook page posts photos of Ambassador Stevens making his morning run in the city of Tripoli and made a threat toward the Ambassador.
  • June 6, 2012 – An IED is left at the gate of the US consulate in Benghazi.
  • June 10, 2012 – RPG is fired at the convoy carrying the British Ambassador in broad daylight as he is nearing the British consulate in Benghazi. No one is killed but the British later close the consulate.
  • Late June, 2012 – Another attack on the Red Cross outpost in Benghazi, this one in daylight. The Red Cross pulls out leaving the US consulate the last western outpost in the city.
  • August 6, 2012 – Attempted carjacking of a vehicle with US diplomatic plates in Tripoli.
  • Weeks prior to Sept. 11, 2012 – Libyan guards at the Benghazi consulate are “warned by their family members to quit their jobs” because of rumors of a “impending attack.”

The Daily Beast reports:

Security deteriorated significantly in June. On June 10, a man fired a rocket-propelled grenade in broad daylight into a convoy carrying the British ambassador to Libya. Later that month, the Red Cross was attacked again. By the end of June, the British Consulate and the Red Cross closed their facilities in Benghazi. By the start of July, the U.S. Consulate was one of the only Western targets left in the city.

“This was not a safe country on its way to a normalized situation. It was a very volatile situation,” Chaffetz told The Daily Beast.

The House Oversight Committee is expected to hold a hearing on Oct. 10 on the threats leading up to the attack.

Someone made some serious mistakes here in evaluating the risk to our Ambassador and other embassy employees. It seems as if common sense would have either increased the security at the embassy or at least temporarily removed the embassy from Libya.

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Things That Make You Wonder

The Daily Beast is reporting today that American intelligence services were aware within 24 hours that the attacks on the American Embassy in Benghazi were the work of al Qaeda.

The article reports:

Three separate U.S. intelligence officials who spoke to The Daily Beast said the early information was enough to show that the attack was planned and the work of al Qaeda affiliates operating in Eastern Libya.

We are at war, and I understand the need for secrecy, but what reason would the current administration have to lie to the American people about this attack?

The article reports:

The question of what the White House knew, and when they knew it, will be of keen interest to members of Congress in the election year. Last Thursday, the Obama administration formally briefed House and Senate members on the attack. Those briefings however failed to satisfy many members, particularly Republicans. “That is the most useless, worthless briefing I have attended in a long time,” Sen. Bob Corker, a Tennessee Republican, was quoted as saying. “There was very good information on this in the first 24 hours. These guys have a return address.”

After a while, you begin to wonder how much of what the Obama Administration is telling America is actually true.

 

 

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Governmental Insanity

The Daily Beast posted a story today that illustrates what happens when bureaucracy divests itself of all common sense. The story takes place in the City of Philadelphia.

The Daily Beast reports:

Ori Feibush owned a business next to a vacant lot filled with broken glass and weeds.  The lot, unfortunately, was owned by the City of Philadelphia, which refused to do anything about it.  (In the city’s defense, Philadelphia has always been under tremendous budget strain).  So Ori Feibush took matters into his own hands.  He claims he paid more than $20,000 out of his own pocket to haul away more than 40 tons of debris, plant trees, and put in benches.  The neighbors are excited.  The city, naturally, is very angry and has demanded he put the garbage and the broken glass back where it was.

This is definitely a new level of governmental insanity. The article brings up a number of good points. Does the city want the original trash back or will any 40 tons of trash do? Does the broken glass have to go in the exact same place?

America used to be a place where everyone in the neighborhood would have pitched in to help salvage a neighborhood eyesore. The burden would have been shared, everyone would have been better off, and the city would have celebrated. What happened?

 

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When Political Contributions Endanger Our Soldiers

Navstar-2F satellite of the Global Positioning...

Image via Wikipedia

On Thursday The Daily Beast posted a story about a Congressional investigation into a satellite broadband company named LightSquared. On Friday, Big Government carried the story. The question involved in the investigation is whether or not the White House pressured a Air Force General to change his testimony before Congress to help a corporation that happened to be a large democrat party donor.

The Daily Beast reports:

According to officials familiar with the situation, Shelton’s prepared testimony was leaked in advance to the company. And the White House asked the general to alter the testimony to add two points: that the general supported the White House policy to add more broadband for commercial use; and that the Pentagon would try to resolve the questions around LightSquared with testing in just 90 days. Shelton chafed at the intervention, which seemed to soften the Pentagon’s position and might be viewed as helping the company as it tries to get the project launched, officials said.

Big Government supplies some of the specifics:

Gen Shelton told members of Congress that the GPS satellite constellation operates in a “quiet neighborhood” in terms of bandwidth, and it’s this lack of interference that helps shield the GPS system from harmful interference in its critical operations. The LightSquared project would be the equivalent of a rock band moving into the neighborhood and blasting its music. All the testing the military did on LightSquared’s systems indicated major disruptions in the GPS system.

The Daily Beast further reports:

The White House confirmed Wednesday that its Office of Management and Budget suggested changes to the general’s testimony but insisted such reviews are routine and not influenced by politics. And it said Shelton was permitted to give the testimony he wants, without any pressure.

The fact that the General was asked to alter his testimony at all in a way that could put the American military at risk is a disgrace. Crony capitalism is becoming a serious problem in this White House. The voters are beginning to make it clear that Chicago politics is not appreciated in Washington.

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