Over the course of the last four or so weeks, the media has paid quite a bit of attention to Islamic State's lucrative trade in "stolen" crude.
On November 16, in a highly publicized effort, US warplanes destroyed 116 ISIS oil trucks in Syria. 45 minutes prior, leaflets were dropped advising drivers (who Washington is absolutely sure are not ISIS members themselves) to "get out of [their] trucks and run away."
The peculiar thing about the US strikes is that it took The Pentagon nearly 14 months to figure out that the most effective way to cripple Islamic State's oil trade is to bomb... the oil. read more
The aftermath of the Paris terrorist attacks has now devolved into a dark and dishonest debate about how we should respond: let's ban encryption, even though there's no evidence the terrorists used it to carry out their crime, and let's ban Syrian refugees, even though the attackers were neither.
It's hard to overstate how disgusting it has been to watch, as proven-false rumors continue to be the basis for the entire political response, and technology ignorance and full-on xenophobia now dominate the discussion.
In a remarkably candid interview with Wolf Blitzer, Gabbard calls Washington's effort to oust Assad "counterproductive" and "illegal" before taking it a step further and accusing the CIA of arming the very same terrorists who The White House insists are "sworn enemies."
In short, Gabbard all but tells the American public that the government is lying to them and may end up inadvertently starting "World War III."
That was before Paris.
Well, in the wake of the attacks, Gabbard has apparently had just about enough of Washington vacillating in the fight against terror just so the US can ensure that ISIS continues to destabilize Assad and now, with bi-partisan support, the brazen Hawaii Democrat has introduced legislation to end the "illegal war" to overthrow Assad.
Gabbard, who fought in Iraq - twice - has partnered with Republican Adam Scott on the bill. read more
Many campus activists have lashed out in frustration at "free speech purism," which they regard as misplaced in the context of institutionalized oppression. But it is extremely short-sighted to sacrifice universal principle on the altar of identity politics for the sake of marginalized groups.
Once you accept the infringement of universal rights as an acceptable political weapon, it will be wielded more effectively by oppressors against the oppressed (cops against blacks, Israeli occupiers against Palestinians, etc.), and not the other way around. Authoritarian restriction is a game much better suited for the mighty than for the marginalized.
If you replace the power of principle with the principle of power, it is the relatively powerless who will get the worst of it. read more
Alternative media analysis of current events.
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