The Trouble With Turkey
There are good people on both sides of the decision President Trump made to move a small number of U.S. troops out of harm's way after Turkish President Erdogan said he could no longer allow cross-border attacks to go unanswered. I am skeptical of those who claim they would have left the troops in place.
I guarantee you that if U.S. troops were killed during a Turkish incursion, the president would be under tremendous pressure to retaliate against Turkey, a fellow NATO member. The left and its media allies would be screaming that the president was risking war with a member of NATO.
For the first time yesterday, I heard someone in the media acknowledge the additional complications facing President Trump. We have airbase privileges in Turkey, and there are dozens of nuclear weapons stored in Turkey as a check against Russian and Iranian ambitions. Erdogan is reportedly holding them "hostage."
I am a tremendous supporter of the Kurds. I have met many of their leaders, including earlier this year. But what exactly was the president supposed to do when Erdogan started making demands? Threaten to attack a NATO member?
None of our European NATO allies are doing much, other than wagging their fingers. Britain and France are not offering to send troops to secure the Turkish border.
Congress is threatening to impose sanctions. Trump already did. And notice that no one is proposing a declaration of war against Turkey and suggesting we send 150,000 troops to Syria. Why not? Because the American people would be overwhelmingly opposed to such a move.
The president is making it clear that he is prepared to ratchet up the sanctions even more. Vice President Pence and Secretary of State Pompeo are heading to Turkey now to negotiate a ceasefire.
The biggest hypocrites are those on the left who sat by as Barack Obama allowed Syria to devolve, as he drew red lines and then ignored them, as he dismissed ISIS as a "JV team," and as he allowed Iran and Russia to occupy Syria.
Obama left a tremendous mess behind. Most of the progressives who are screaming the loudest now defended Obama when he did nothing.
And as several commentators have noted recently, we're all worried about ISIS jihadists escaping from Kurdish-run prison camps. But many of the leftists screaming the loudest now have worked nonstop to legally break the jihadists out of Gitmo!
Pence Steps Up
You may not have noticed lately, but it has been really striking how the president has come to rely on Vice President Mike Pence. As I noted, the vice president is on his way to negotiate a ceasefire with Turkey.
Last year, Pence delivered a blistering speech taking China to task. He's taken the lead in promoting the new trade agreement with Canada and Mexico. He's been a driving force behind the administration's efforts to restore balance to the federal judiciary. And he's taking on the left's impeachment coup.
Speaking of impeachment, House liberals apparently balked again at the idea of holding a formal impeachment vote. Constitutional law professor Jonathan Turley blasted Pelosi's "immaculate impeachment."
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy suggested this morning that the legal process in communist China is more just than what the president is getting in Pelosi's House of Representatives.
I'm pleased to report that several members of the House Freedom Caucus attempted to gain access to today's closed-door impeachment proceedings. They also requested a transcript of former Ukrainian envoy Kurt Volker's testimony.
Of course, their requests were rejected. But their actions once again called attention to the progressives' "Soviet-style tactics." As former federal prosecutor Joe diGenova notes, there's nothing constitutional about an impeachment process involving secret evidence and secret witnesses.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell also blasted this hyper-partisan impeachment process yesterday. You can read his remarks here.
A Big Night
Were you watching last night? That was a battle of titans! The competition was fierce. Every one of them was swinging for the fences. And the Washington swamp was celebrating!
Of course, I am referring to the Washington Nationals winning the National League Championship Series last night and clinching a World Series spot for the first time since 1933.
Some Debate Observations
- It was clear from last night's Democrat debate that Elizabeth Warren is the frontrunner. She spoke the most last night and was attacked the most. There was also polling released yesterday that found Warren in first place with Joe Biden falling to third place. Moreover, his campaign appears to be running out of money.
- Biden stuck to his mantra of "Trump fears me the most," "I'll beat Trump like a drum," "My son did nothing wrong," and "I did nothing wrong." Otherwise, he didn't say much, and many commentators panned his performance last night. For example, Democrat pollster Doug Schoen declared Biden the night's "Biggest Loser."
- Who was the winner? Perhaps former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who every time he watches one of these debates thinks more seriously about throwing his hat into the ring.
The Freedom From Religion Foundation ran ads during last night's debate featuring Ron Reagan promoting atheism. That speaks volumes about who was watching. No doubt they are highly educated, fully woke, and willing to use the power of big government to smash religious believers.