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Nuclear North Korea: #HotTakes

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With North Korea continuing down the same path of nuclear weapons advancements, Americans have mixed feelings about how to proceed. Unlike many issues that have very clear conservative and/or Federalist perspectives for a unified voice, the complexity of the the North Korea situation delivers the most diverse set of foreign policy perspectives we’ve seen from any issue since the Iraq War.

As Facebook used to say, “It’s complicated.”

Here are some of the right-leaning hot takes on the topic int he last 24 hours:

Senator Ben Sasse issues decisive statement on North Korea

Susan Wright, RedState

They may be forced to call him “Dear Leader,” but we can see by the way they’re forced to live that he’s not a leader, but a dictator, and he is rabid.

Keep in prayer over this situation. Pray for our leadership, that God give them wisdom. Pray for our allies to come together in this moment. And pray for peace.

White House warns U.S. will use its ‘nuclear capability’ if North Korea attacks an ally

Kyle Feldscher, Washington Examiner

The White House said North Korea’s test of a nuclear weapon would not drive the allies apart.

“The two leaders condemned North Korea’s continued destabilizing and provocative actions, confirmed the two countries’ ironclad mutual defense commitments, and pledged to continue close cooperation,” the statement read.

Hostile and Dangerous: President Trump responds to North Korean nuclear test

Emily Zanotti, DailyWire

Trump has convened his national security team, as well as tapped his Treasury Secetary, Steve Mnuchin, for ideas. According to sources close to the White House, Mnuchin is tasked with putting together a comprehensive economic sanctions plan that will outline harsher punishments for North Korea. But it’s hard to get much harsher than what North Korea already faces: an almost complete blockade of trade with most Western nations.

Mattis warns U.S. could bring “total annihilation” to North Korea

John T. Bennett, Roll Call

“We made clear that we have the ability to defend ourselves and our allies, South Korea and Japan, from any attack,” Mattis said of the U.S. military. “And our commitment among the allies is ironclad: Any threat to the United States or its territories, including Guam, or our allies will be met with a massive military response, a response both effective and overwhelming.

“Kim Jong Un should take heed of the United Nations Security Council’s unified voice — all members unanimously agreed on the threat North Korea poses and they remain unanimous on their commitment to the de-nuclearization of the Korean Peninsula,” he said, then concluding the prepared statement with what sounded like a threat of an armed conflict unless Kim changes his behavior in a major way.

Cruz: U.S. response requires greater missile defense

Kelsey Tamborrino, Politico

“Missile interception technology has increased dramatically, and the next arena where this is going to play out is in space,” Cruz said Sunday on ABC’s “This Week.”

“We need to do the investment now, so that in years to come we have that intercept capability,” added the Texas Republican, who sits on the Senate Armed Services Committee.

North Korea responds to Trump’s “fire and fury” threat with a hydrogen bomb

Bruce Klingner, National Interest

Pyongyang last night conducted its first test of a hydrogen (thermonuclear) bomb. The device was ten times more powerful than any of those detonated in North Korea’s five earlier atomic (fission) nuclear tests, signifying yet another surprise breakthrough in the regime’s nuclear program.

This is the first nuclear test during President Trump’s tenure, and the world will be watching to see how he responds. One thing is certain: this test will further roil the already unsettled dynamics in northeast Asia.

Mattis warns North Korea of ‘massive military response’ if it threatens US, allies

Julia Manchester, The Hill

Mattis’s aggressive, holiday-weekend statement comes hours after North Korean state media announced the country had successfully tested a miniaturized hydrogen bomb capable of fitting on an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM).

The only certainty is that the situation is volatile. The entire world is watching how the leader of the most powerful nation on earth will respond to threats from arguably the most dangerous leader on earth.

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Immigration

As predicted, Trump offers DACA amnesty in exchange for border wall

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As predicted Trump offers DACA amnesty in exchange for border wall

Throughout Trump’s first two years in office, I’ve been one of only a handful of conservative voices shouting from the rooftops that the New York liberal’s promise to fix America’s out-of-control illegal immigration problem was nothing but a lie.

As a candidate, Trump promised to build a “big beautiful powerful wall” on our southern border at Mexico’s expense, and he promised to overturn Obama’s unconstitutional Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) executive order that allowed illegals to stay in America indefinitely. Unfortunately, the “wall” has become an “artistically designed” barrier of some sort funded by the U.S. taxpayer, and DACA is not only still in effect, it’s on its way to becoming permanent.

While the reality of Trump’s broken promises dealing with illegal immigration have been crystal clear to those not drinking the orange Kool-Aid, his inevitable betrayal on the issue has been brought sharply into focus since last summer.

In May 2018, as Trump and the GOP were looking for ways to save their jobs ahead of the midterms, the House Freedom Caucus joined hands with Democrats to push for a “fix” to DACA.

In June 2018, Paul Ryan proposed a plan that would allow DREAMers to legally stay in the country and be put on the pathway to citizenship in exchange for $23 billion for building a border wall.

Following their September 2018 budget betraying funding everything from Planned Parenthood to DACA and sanctuary cities, rumors began spreading around Washington that Trump was ready to cut an immigration deal with Democrats in light of the reality that the Democrats were about to retake the House in the midterms.

The Democrats did retake the House, and in the days since their victory, Trump and the GOP have been laying the foundation for their inevitable immigration betrayal. With the help of Trump’s son-in-law and advisor Jared Kushner, trading DACA amnesty for a border wall is now the official position of the Trump administration and the GOP-controlled Senate.

So, it came as no surprise when Trump proposed a deal over the weekend to end to his manufactured government shutdown by offering Democrats a three-year extension of DACA in exchange for $5 billion for border security funding — an idea originally conceived by Sen. Lindsey Graham.

Three years? I’m sure it’s just a coincidence, but that’s just enough time to kick the can down the road until after his 2020 election … assuming there is one. And just in case there are any doubts about the motivation behind this three-year timeframe, consider this: Mitch McConnell, who has refused to let the Senate vote on the shutdown, has endorsed Trump’s offer and will hold vote on it this week.

Mickey is also up for re-election in 2020.

For now, Democrats are rejecting Trump’s offer, but it’s only a matter of time before they get what they want. After all, Trump and the GOP want the same thing.

Originally posted on StridentConservative.com.

 


David Leach is the owner of The Strident Conservative. His daily radio commentary is distributed by the Salem Radio Network and is heard on stations across America.

Follow the Strident Conservative on Twitter and Facebook.

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Foreign Affairs

Is Israel on the brink of war?

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Is Israel on the brink of war

Israel and Iran continue to trade threats and missile attacks over Syria as the latest round targeted Iranian Quds forces near Damascus. The IDF, which has confirmed attacks recently, went so far as to announce the attacks on Twitter.

This attack was in response to a missile launched from Syria by Iranian Quds Forces into the Golan Heights. The missile was intercepted by the Iron Dome, which was captured on camera by skiers on Mt. Hermon.

The overnight attacks on Syria resulted in many missiles and guided bombs being shot down, but enough made it through to damage Quds training grounds, weapons depots, and kill at least 11 people. There are no reports of how many of Iran’s elite forces were killed, though British-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said only two of the dead were Syrians.

Israel, in rare move, announces attacks on Iranian targets in Syria, delivers warning

https://www.foxnews.com/world/israel-attacks-iran-forces-in-syria-military-confirmsIsraeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu recently confirmed that Israel had struck hundreds of targets in Syria linked to Iran and the Lebanese Hezbollah militant group, including a weapons facility two weeks ago.

Iran and Hezbollah are allied with the Syrian government in the civil war.

Iran has begun its loudest saber-rattling in some time as they send clear threats of war and the destruction of Israel through state television.

“The young people in the air force are fully ready and impatient to confront the Zionist regime and eliminate it from the Earth,” IRIAF Brigadier General Aziz Nasirzadeh said following the strike.

Iran says ready for war with Israel that will ‘lead to its destruction’

https://www.jpost.com/Breaking-News/Iran-We-are-ready-for-a-war-that-will-lead-to-the-destruction-of-Israel-578108The commander of the Iranian Air Force warned on Monday that Iran was prepared for a decisive war with Israel, “which will bring an end to the IDF’s attacks on Syria.” “Our armed forces are prepared for a war that will bring the crushing destruction of Israel,” he said, according to media reports.

“We are ready for the day when we will see the end of Israel.”

My Take

Americans are often unaware of the importance of Syria to Iran. For years, it’s been assumed the only reason Iran hasn’t attacked Israel, especially when they were at the height of their power during the latter years of President Obama’s administration, is they have no clear path to reach Israel. Iraq, Syria, and Jordan are between Iran and the tiny Jewish state, making it nearly impossible for them to have any real reach into the heart of Israel.

This is why they are so intent on having an embedded military presence in Syria. It’s why Israel is doing everything in its power to prevent them from getting a serious foothold there.

Iran’s military is strong and somewhat sophisticated, but it’s still no match for Israel. However, Iran could take advantage of Israel’s small size if they can get enough missiles and launchers into Syria. Doing so would allow them to use Syrians as cover, a strategy currently in use by anti-Israeli forces in the Gaza Strip and Lebanon.

As long as Iran continues to pursue entrenchment in Syria, war is on the near horizon. Israeli strikes may be a catalyst for war, but they’re necessary if they have any hopes of preventing Iran from taking over their Syrian neighbors wholesale.


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Entertainment and Sports

What really separates Tom Brady from every other player on the field

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What really separates Tom Brady from every other player on the field

Every season, Patriots quarterback Tom Brady gains more people who believe he’s the greatest of all time. It has been a long road for him because he didn’t have the pedigree that other potential GOATs had. He wasn’t the #1 pick in the NFL draft like John Elway or Terry Bradshaw. He was drafted in the 6th round. He didn’t come in with lots of fanfare. His first starting job came as a result of Drew Bledsoe’s injury. He doesn’t have a flashy style like Brett Favre, a complex system like Peyton Manning, or a cannon for an arm like Aaron Rodgers.

He just wins.

The key to his winning ways may have nothing to do with his strong skills, good supporting cast, or excellent game plans. It may just come down to hard work and good ol’ fashioned competitiveness. His mental toughness has been likened to Larry Bird’s or Evander Holyfield’s, two greats in their sports who made up for physical deficiencies by constantly improving mentally even when they weren’t at the top physically.

“Every quarterback can throw a ball; every running back can run; every receiver is fast; but that mental toughness that you talk about translates into competitiveness.”

Football is more than just a physical sport. As Tom Brady has demonstrated, mental toughness may be even more important than 40-yard-dash times or arm strength.


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