At least one person has been killed and almost certainly more than that in a terrorist attack along Barcelona's tourist-heavy Las Ramblas street. Earlier this evening local time a van hopped the curb and drove into a crowd of people on the sidewalk. Catalan police later confirmed that this was a deliberate act and was/is … Continue reading DEVELOPING: Barcelona terror attack
Brookings' Bruce Reidel says that Donald Trump's $110 billion arms deal with Saudi Arabia is "Fake News": I’ve spoken to contacts in the defense business and on the Hill, and all of them say the same thing: There is no $110 billion deal. Instead, there are a bunch of letters of interest or intent, but … Continue reading Stop calling everything “Fake News”
It's been 14 years since George W. Bush declared victory in Iraq. Time flies. So far this year, IraqBodyCount.org says that 5778 Iraqi civilians have been killed as a direct result of the chain of events set off by Bush's Iraq invasion (we'll leave aside the ancillary effects of the invasion in, for example, Syria). … Continue reading Happy Mission Accomplished Day!
Having noted the 100th anniversary of World War I's indecisive First Battle of Gaza just a few weeks ago, I suppose it would be inappropriate to skip over the centennial of the slightly less indecisive Second Battle of Gaza, which was April 17-19. I say that both of these battles were indecisive mostly because each was … Continue reading This Week in Middle Eastern history: the Second Battle of Gaza (1917)
The UN Security Council met today in special session today to discuss yesterday's chemical weapons incident in the Syrian town of Khan Shaykhun, the death toll from which is now up to at least 72. Nothing came of it, because the UN Security Council is set up, pretty much by design, to do nothing on … Continue reading What’s the use
The White House fired Steve Bannon today. Well, not totally. He was removed from his controversial and wholly unwarranted seat on the National Security Council. Bannon has no, as in none, as in zero qualifications to sit on the NSC apart from the fact that he sets the white nationalist, xenophobic, anti-Islam agenda for the … Continue reading NEEDED: Better Quality Lies
Two Sundays ago, March 26, marked the 100th anniversary of the First Battle of Gaza, a small and, to be honest, fairly inconsequential affair (the Second Battle of Gaza was fought less than a month later, so clearly neither side expended itself this time around) that is nonetheless interesting in that what could have been … Continue reading Last week in Middle Eastern history: the First Battle of Gaza (1917)