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North Korea launches another missile, escalates aggressions

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North Korea launches another missile escalates aggressions

North Korea launched another missile today just before 7am local time. The missile was launched from Sunan near Pyongyang and flew eastward over Hokkaido in Japan. This comes two weeks after reports of a hydrogen bomb test. Yesterday, they threatened to “sink” Japan and turn the United States into “ashes” following harsher United Nations sanctions.

Instead of backing down, North Korean leader Kim Jong un appears to be ramping up his aggression. Threats haven’t worked. Negotiations from China haven’t worked. Sanctions, apparently, will not work, either. This puts the United States and all of east Asia in a poor situation. How do you deal with someone who may have nuclear weapons, the ability to deliver them, and a threatening posture that appears poised to strike at any moment?

Most of conservative media is currently focused on Donald Trump, Chuck Schumer, and Nancy Pelosi. Some are watching Bernie Sanders and single-payer healthcare. Ben Shapiro speaking in Berkeley is certain to be interesting. With all this happening, we cannot take our eyes off the existential threat that could trigger a nuclear war on the whims of an unstable man.

Perspectives

North Korea fires another missile Pyongyang South Korea Japan | David Choi, Business Insider

http://www.businessinsider.com/north-korea-fires-missile-near-pyongyang-south-korea-japan-2017-9In response to the latest provocation, South Korea is reportedly conducting a ballistic missile drill in the East Sea. South Korean President Moon Jae-in and the country’s National Security Council will be holding an emergency meeting in response to the launch.

 

North Korea’s nuclear and missile program moving ‘faster than expected,’ expert says | Greg Paikot, Fox News

http://www.foxnews.com/world/2017/09/14/north-koreas-nuclear-and-missile-program-moving-faster-than-expected-expert-says.html“They are moving forward very fast,” leading Seoul-based North Korea expert Andrei Lankov said about North Korea’s nuclear and missile program. “Much faster than expected.”

 

US nuke commander ‘assumes’ North Koreans tested H-bomb | Robert Burns, Washington Post

https://www.washingtonpost.com/national/us-nuke-commander-assumes-nkoreans-tested-h-bomb/2017/09/14/9727cd10-9995-11e7-af6a-6555caaeb8dc_story.html?utm_term=.faa1c3c862aaAir Force Gen. John E. Hyten, commander of Strategic Command, told reporters that while he was not in a position to confirm it, he assumes from the size of the underground explosion and other factors that it was a hydrogen bomb — which is a leap beyond the fission, or atomic, bombs North Korea has previously tested.

 

North Korea: the US should be “beaten to death like a rabid dog” – Vox

https://www.vox.com/world/2017/9/14/16306772/north-korea-united-states-japan-south-korea-trump-rabid-dog-threat“Let’s reduce the US mainland into ashes and darkness,” said a spokesperson for the Korea Asia-Pacific Peace Committee, which oversees North Korea’s foreign affairs and propaganda, as reported by the state-run Korean Central News Agency. He even said the US should “be beaten to death as a stick is fit for a rabid dog.”

Reactions

Final Thoughts

This is not a situation that’s going to go away. The administration needs to send a message to North Korea that doesn’t go through the United Nations. The message needs to be clear and away from the public eye as taunting would be the wrong move. Kim Jong un needs to be allowed to tone it down without losing face. If we don’t address this immediately, there will be an attack. It’s just a matter of time.

+Jesseb Shiloh is not-so-new to blogging. He enjoys things that most don't and doesn't mind and occasional nap. And he's never ambiguous nor contradictory most of the time. Find him on Twitter.

Foreign Affairs

Robert Wood Johnson on the failed Iran deal

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Robert Wood Johnson on the failed Iran deal

As ambassador to the United Kingdom, Robert Wood Johnson understands the situation in Iran. He’s acutely aware that sanctions against Iran are the only thing short of military intervention that can prevent them from producing nuclear weapons in the near future. The Iran deal, the alleged hallmark of President Obama’s and Secretary of State Kerry’s legacy, has been clearly demonstrated as an utter failure.

Iran has not backed down. They’ve only placated the world when absolutely necessary with lies on top of lies. The United States is fighting back by pulling out of the deal and laying sanctions on Iran, but they need more to join the fight. Johnson is calling on his host nation to follow suit.

“Far from becoming a more responsible member of the international community, as we had all hoped, Iran grew bolder.”

Source: The Hill

US ambassador urges UK to pull out of Iran nuclear deal

http://thehill.com/business-a-lobbying/401458-us-ambassador-urges-uk-to-pull-out-of-iran-nuclear-deal“It is clear that the danger from Iran did not diminish in the wake of the [2015 Iran] deal,” Johnson wrote. “Far from becoming a more responsible member of the international community, as we had all hoped, Iran grew bolder.”

“It is time to move on from the flawed 2015 deal,” he continued. “We are asking global Britain to use its considerable diplomatic power and influence and join us as we lead a concerted global effort toward a genuinely comprehensive agreement.”

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Military

Donald Trump on the proposed new branch of the US armed forces

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Donald Trump on the proposed new branch of the US armed forces

Nobody has ever accused President Trump of being eloquent. The way he’s handling the new “Space Force” concept is, well, very Trumpish.

His actual Tweet is something you can’t make up:

“Space Force all the way!”

Go team, go!

Pence unveils plan for Congress to create Space Force by 2020

https://www.cnbc.com/2018/08/09/pence-unveils-plan-for-congress-to-create-space-force-by-2020.htmlTrump first floated the Space Force idea as a part of his national security strategy March 13. On Thursday, he expressed his enthusiasm for the plan in a tweet shortly after Pence made the announcement, saying: “Space Force all the way!”

The president described in March how he had originally coined the term as a joke, while discussing U.S. government spending and private investment in space. Trump then directed the Pentagon in June to immediately begin the creation of the new branch.

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Foreign Affairs

Being American doesn’t mean ignoring facts. Ron Paul right about Trump-Putin meeting.

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In the era of torn Russian relations, Ron Paul takes a step back and views more information than almost any pundit on air or on twitter. It’s bipartisan to hate Russian, and that causes many Americans to hold inconsistent views on foreign policy issues related to Russia.

The media’s coverage on all things related to Russia was bad before it’s terrible coverage of Trump. We need a balanced factual approach to foreign relations with Russia. Not everything is Russia’s fault. America needs a new approach to Russia, and Trump can bring that.

John Kerry spent so much time picking losing battles with Russia and the United States needs to move on from these geopolitical skirmishes. Part of this means throwing the Obama administration under the bus. Between John Kerry and Hillary Clinton, US interests in the Middle East, Asia, and Europe faced setbacks. Only then can we have a better relationship with Russia.

I appreciate Ron Paul’s perspective because, in an era of hot takes and the political popularity of Russia hating, he maintains a just perspective that embraces facts.

US Russia Factsheet

US and Russia

  • These two countries have the largest nuclear arsenal
  • US military currently miles ahead of Russia
  • Relations have ever been good
  • Both (sort of) friends with the Kurds
  • Russia largely used as scapegoat, punching bags in American politics
  • Trump administration upped military spending
  • US through NATO still practices a containment policy with regards to Russia
  • Both countries have issues with Islamic terrorism
  • Working together on North Korea issue

Russia

  • Is not a free country
  • Does not pretend to be a free country (like Europe)
  • Its people largely view the break up of the Soviet Union as a tragedy (regardless of feelings about communism)
  • Actually likes Putin, a lot (strangely)
  • Has had Putin at the helm for decades

Iran

  • Putin came out in affirmation of the Iran Deal
  • Trump remained opposed
  • This point of contention was largely ignored by the media
  • Russia and Iran are allies
  • Iran taking control of Iraq through Shia paramilitaries
  • Backs Houthi rebels in Yemen

Iraq

  • Invaded by the US in 2003
  • War lost when the Obama Administration refused to negotiate a status of forces agreement
  • Iraqi military fell apart to ISIS when they invaded from Syria
  • Iranian backed militias filled the vacuum
  • Status of Kurds unclear

Syria

Ukraine

Turkey

  • Turkey is a member of NATO
  • Turkey opposes Israel
  • Turkey provoked war with Russia by downing Russian jet
  • Turkey becoming increasingly Islamic under neo-Ottoman regime
  • Kemalism was killed in the attempted coup
  • Ergodan held a referendum to grant himself more power
  • Russia and Turkey have an arrangement in Syria to not fight each other
  • Turkey performing land grab in Syria
  • Turkey killing Kurds in Syria
  • Turkey backing its own Islamist in Syria

Israel

  • Trump administration the most Israel-friendly administration in US history
  • Russia opposes Israel on a geopolitical level (along with most US allies)
  • Russia backs enemies of Israel
  • US backs enemies of Israel (Saudis)
  • Israel believed to have nuclear capabilities

Libya

  • US and Russia back differing factions
  • US played large role in destabilizing region during the rebellion
  • Terrorist that America aided attack a US consulate and murdered four people, including Ambassador Stevens

2016 Election

  • US has long history of meddling in foreign elections
  • Russian meddling had no effect on the outcome of 2016 election
  • DNC never handed over server to investigators
  • Indictments are not convictions, not even close
  • Russia should be embarrassed if that was their attempt to interfere in a US election
  • Media overplaying story because they dislike Trump

US Agencies

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