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Trump’s plan B for Iran May 25, 2018

Posted by hslu in 特朗普, 石油, 美國, Islam, Middle East, Military, Muslim, Trump, U.S. Foreign Policy, 川普, 中東.
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http://flip.it/cHuDmr

It hasn’t worked on Kim Jong En yet.

But will it work on Iran?

These are America’s demands for Iran delivered by Pompeo after Trump pulled the U.S. out of the Iran Nuclear Treaty :

The question seems to be this:

Are Americans willing to die for Israel?

引狼入室 November 18, 2015

Posted by hslu in Cold War, Congress, Debt and deficit, Economics, Election, Global Affair, Islam, Middle East, Military, Muslim, Obama, Putin, Racial Bias.
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The title of this post, which is in Chinese, means inviting wolf into the hen house.

What is this about?

Obaba’s foreign policy and his desire to abandon America’s role of the world police are largely responsible for the unrest in the Middle East, escalating civil war in Syria and the growing threat of ISIS to the world. Obama wants Arab countries solve their own problems and focus America’s attention on containing China and defeating Putin.

The fact of the matter is that Iran has taken advantage of the power vacuum and expanded its influence over its archrival in the Middle East: Saudi Arabia.

In the mean time, Obama’s indecisiveness on ISIS for the past 2 to 3 years has made ISIS the regional power it is now.

The direct result of this development is millions of Syrians fleeting their war-torn country seeking a stable and better life in Europe and other places. Obama has agreed to take 100,000 migrants and settle them in the US.

But, do we know how many of the 100,000 migrants are closet terrorists? How many of them have ill intentions on the US? How many of these migrants will be recruited by radical Imam in the US and in the world?And how many years will take them to strike soft targets in the US?

Many Republican and some Democrat governors have refused to take their allotments because they don’t want troubles down the road.

But, I read that the states have little alternative to refuse them legally. Looks like it will be a hot potato issue for the 2016 presidential election and we will know which side Hillary will be on pretty soon.

Diversity has been a strength of the United States for the past hundred years. Unfortunately it has been a point of contention in recent years.

Many years ago, black was the only sensitive racial issue in many American communities. Recent violent riots and sensitive killings by blacks on policemen on duty have bought the racial issue to the forefront of daily news. It has made Americans uneasy and neverous.

Latinos has gain considerable inflence on the politicsl landscape in recent decades and illegal immigrants, mostly Latinos, have dominated political debateS all over the nation.

Now, we have a new problem on hand and it relates to discrination against Muslims.

It appears that American governments, both on the federal and local level, are ill prepared to deal with these issues and the nation is being pulled away by radically different forces.

Americans have little confidence on its governments to solve many pressing issues: political, social, fiscaland economical.

The prospect looks dim.

Prelude of a proxy war October 5, 2015

Posted by hslu in Cold War, Global Affair, Middle East, Military, Obama, Putin.
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Obama’s Middle East policy is crumbling down in front of our eyes like a house of cards.

America wants to get rid of al-Assad and build a new nation first through the hands of US trsined rebels and then ISIS. Both strategies failed miserablly. The weaken al-Assad called Putin and Russia got a perfect excuse to ‘protect Russian national interest’ and send in heavy fire power recently.

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Source: Fox News

Now, Russian jets are bombing US backed rebels instead of killing ISIS.

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Source: Fox News

What will Obama do: back up rebels and fire back at Russian fighter jets or let Putin does what he wants which is standing up against the U.S. and extending Russian’s influence into Mideast?

I don’t think Obama has no option but to back down unless Obama wants a proxy war with Putin.

Super power?

What super power?

All I see is a deflated Obama playing 2nd fiddle on the world stage and a once mighty nation fading into old age because of diminishing influence in the world, heavy and growing national debt, weak economy, 10% U6 unemployment rate and more and more citizens working 2 or more jobs just to get by. In the mean time, huge military spending becomes less effective and drags down the back of the nation. Obama’s foreign policy and his view on America in the world only accelerate America’s eventual dimise.

百足之蟲 死而不僵。It will take some time. The history will mark Obama’s 8 years in WH as the pivotal point which marks the beginning of an end: the end of American’s hegemony.

Here it comes! July 7, 2015

Posted by hslu in China, Cold War, Economics, Global Affair, Islam, Middle East, Muslim, Obama, Oil, Putin.
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Saudi’s government money is coming to Russia! Saudi’s sovereign wealth fund, Public Investment Fund, will invest $10 billion in Russia over the next five years. It is a game changer as far as American Middle East foreign policy is concern.

First of all, Saudi’s money comes to Russia despite western economic embargo engineered by Obama and EU leaders after Russia entered Crimea. In essence, it is a slap on Obama’s face whether he admits it or not.

Saudi for the past 35 years has been in American’s back pocket working closely with American presidents on working as a swing oil producer to stabilize world oil price, sales of American’s advance weapon to Saudi, and popping up the Saudi royal family. This relationship continued for the best part of the past 3 decades and the friendship has more or less been beneficial to both countries.

Then came Obama who, being a closet Muslim, decided to appease to Arab nations and adopted this as the central tenet of his Middle East foreign policy. In this regard, Obama disparaged Israel and belittled Netanyahu as if Obama was sympathetic to what Muslims had to endure what this nation has done to Arabs. I don’t think he gained any friends but he has certainly lost an ally.

Obama fulfilled his campaign promise and satisfied Democrat’s liberal base by pulling American troops out of Iraq and Afghanistan because American are tired of wars, the U.S. can’t afford it anymore and Muslims do not want infidels in Muslim’s territories. Obama used American’s tax money to equip Iraqi troops and left American advisors to train Iraqi soldiers to defend their own country. However, these soldiers don’t want to die and don’t want to fight. This total failure on the part of American foreign policy created a vacuum and helped ISIS grew to a formidable force it is right now. Obama has failed to recognize the threat of ISIS and it created the mess the Middle East is in.

Obama failed to support Egypt’s Mubarak and let him became a prisoner of the new Egyptian region. Obama failed to support Morsi despite the fact that he was the president elected by Egyptian people.

Obama continued economic embargo on Iran but failed to stop Iranian’s aggression to develop a nuclear weapon program. In the end, Obama recognized that it is inevitable that Iran will be a nuclear nation and decided to negotiate with them.

In the midst of all this, what can Saudi’s royal family do especially after the death of King Abdullah? Can Saudi’s royal family continue to trust Obama as a loyal friend when they need help to support its rule over Saudi people?

Apparently, the answer is “NO.”

Now the door to Russia is open, it won’t be closed anytime soon. Putin will open his arms to welcome Saudi princes whenever they want to come for a visit or vacation.

Obama still has a year and half in the White House. He made Putin and Xi good partners. He will make sure Putin and Saudi Prince become good friends well after Obama collects his life time pension from American people.

美國:三面受敵 September 3, 2014

Posted by hslu in China, Cold War, Global Affair, Islam, Middle East, Military, Obama, Oil, Putin.
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Yesterday I talked about NATO, US, Russia and China. In it I talked about US is fighting 3 wars:

—- —- —- —- —- —- —- —-
‘America is fighting a Cold war with Russia. It Probably will last another 40 years.’

‘America is fighting a guerrilla warfare with muslim terrorists. This war may last another 100 years.’

‘Obama also managed to piss off China by rounding up China’s neighbors in order to put a NATO equvalent around China. He called that ‘pivot to the East’ in the name of protecting America’s national interests.’
—- —- —- —- —- —- —- —-

Today, an article on NYT, which appears on CNBC mobile site, talked about the same thing. The main point of the article can be simply stated as ‘US defense budget has to go up if America wants to prosecute these wars.’

On this point, the Republicans are with Obama but American’s pocket isn’t. Well, the only way to get around this is to borrow more money and run up the national debt faster than you can count the digits on the national debt clock.

Yeah, go ahead. Borrow some more. Raise taxes if you must. The millenniums will Pay for it.

Hmm…, this was exactly how past empires were bought down to their knees.

America will be no different. The decay will happen: slowly but surely. Obama already got the process started with Obamacare and trillions of deficits over the last several years.

The drama continues.

Peace in Middle East? Not a chance. August 8, 2014

Posted by hslu in Global Affair, Islam, Military, Muslim, Obama, Politics.
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The headline of BBC’s website reads

“Gaza conflict: US and UN condemn new Gaza violence.”

Israel resumed air strikes on Gaza today (Friday, 08-08-2014) because it says that Hamas fired rockets into Israel. Hamas says it rejected the peace deal because Israel didn’t meet its demands.

We called this: “公說公有理, 婆說婆有理.”

And fighting continues.

Well, what are US and UN planing to do?

Here is the official response from the US: The parties should work towards a “sustainable ceasefire.”

We call that “廢話!. 說了等於沒說.”

Any words from UN?

The suffering for civilians was “intolerable” as if it needs UN to remind us that.

The fact of the matter is that the two sides hate each other. Peace is not possible simply because of killings of innocent people on both sides. The only way to settle this is by force: kill or be killed. Kill until your opponents are too weak to harm you.

Simple as that.

Iran wants to get rid of Israel so that it established Hamas and Hezbollah and funded their operations till this day. Iran is also working on a nuclear option which Israel might neutralize it before it threatens the survival of the entire nation of Israel.

Politicians talk. They have those talking points remembered and that’s all they knew what to do. Their parents sent them to get trained in Harvard and Yale and what did they get from their high priced education? They knew how to use their mouth and they are very good at it.

Talk will not bring peace. Just ask Carter and Clinton. America under Clinton talked to North Korea and got a food for nuclear bomb deal. And what North Korea is doing these days? Testing nuclear bombs and nuclear missiles! Who was that naive guy who led US talk team with North Korea? Well, it was that useless Carter. But thanks to Obama, Carter got promoted to the second worst US president after Obama.

Well, I digress. Let’s get back to Peace in the Middle East.

Talk is cheap. Talk from politicians is cheaper. Talk from US and UN are useless because it falls on dead ears especially in the Middle east.

Military action will bring peace. Eventually. Peace will come when the other side is totally defeated.

Have you heard of nuclear bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki? That’s when Japan finally surrendered because they knew they are totally defeated.

That’s what is needed in Middle East.

However, in this day of so-called democracy, total defeat of either party is politically not possible.

Isolate Isreal is Obama‘s new Middle East Foreign Policy February 14, 2014

Posted by hslu in Global Affair, Islam, Military, Muslim, Obama, Oil, Politics, Religion.
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It appears that the Middle East has entered into a no-man’s land with social unrest, protests on the street, none-stop suicide bombings, ethnic attacks, regional conflicts, killings of innocent civilians and alleged militants by American drones, isolation of Israel and a nuclear Iran.

Lybia continue to be in the headline since the death of Gaddafi, a Sunni. Al Qaeda has emerged as strong as ever with a carefully planned attack on US consulate in Benghazi on 9-11-2012 where American ambassador and three others were killed. The country has fallen into the hands of Muslim Fundamentalists and fighting between tribes sank the nation into civil war and chaos. One thing is clear: the nation is not a friend of the United States and by taking out Gaddafi, America has created an enemy and possible an ally to Iran. To complicate the matter more, much of Lybia’s oil resources in South and East Lybia is controlled by a self-declared autonomous government of Cyrenaica. The separatist group announced that it is in discussion with a number of prospective customers to export crude.  However, the central government doesn’t recognize the separatist government and has forbid any oil shipment to foreign buyers. It is unclear whether the group has the capacity to protect oil transportation and shipments if a deal is stuck because government naval ship has blocked a tanker from loading any crude oil at an oil terminal controlled by the group.  

Egypt, a Sunni country strong enough to withstand the power of Iran, a Shiite nation, has changed from a trusted ally for the US over the last 30 years under President Hosni Mubarak to a region of continuing unrest. It all started with the arrest of Mubarak which was followed by a democratic election when Mohamed Morsi supported by the anti-Semitic and anti-US group: Muslim Brotherhood, was elected president of the nation. After a year in office, President Morsi was removed by the military because he faced massive protest from the opposition. A new government was then installed by the military and a new president, General Abdel Fattah Sisi, was put in the office. The latest development was that a new constitution was overwhelmingly approved by Egyptian people and General Sisi is expected to be the new president under the new constitution. In the mean time, American foreign aids in the form of fighter jets and other weapons have been scaled back but I expect that the aids will continue once dust is settled. As of now, America simply does not know what to say about the Sisi government because it doesn’t know the true nature of the new government.

Syria, a Shiite nation and an ally of Iran, is a mess by any calculation and the two-year old civil war has no sign to stop anytime soon. Many Al Qaeda sympathy groups and foreign fighters have entered the war against the Assad government which is backed by Iran. It will be anyone’s guess what will turn out from the military conflict. Obama has vowed to support the opposition but it is likely that the opposition may be linked to groups sympathetic to Al Qaeda’s cause. Obama has drawn a red line in the sand warning Assad not to use chemical weapons on the opposition. The line has clearly been crossed, possible multiple times, but Obama has failed to carry out his promise and has totally lost credibility among Muslim countries. Obama kicked the political hot potato to the US Congress while he hid behind his supporters. Fortunately Russia’s Putin entered the picture by broker a deal to dismantling Syria’s chemical weapons which saved Obama from total humiliation. It appears that the civil war will in time play out on its own. As of now, the military conflict will remain inside Syria’s border and since the civil war poses threat to America’s national interest and Syria has no oil production to speak of, America is taking a hand off approach for the near future. The fall out of Syria conflict is the rise of Putin’s standing on the international scene and the loss of influence of the United States among Arab countries.

Saudi Arabia (Sunni) is not without political risk. The Saud family has ruled the country for decades. It has spent country’s petro wealth generously on its people so that they will keep the Saud monarchy in power. The Arab Spring is a threat to the House of Saud and political unrest is not out of question inside the Saudi nation either. One thing that works to Al Saud’s favor is that the country of 23 million people, including 5 million from foreign countries, is controlled by about 7,000 princes of the royal family. Of course, any sign of political unrest against the monarchy of Saudi Arabia will upset the equilibrium existed in the energy market. If it happens, a catastrophe on the world economy will happen quickly and decisively. Crude oil price will shot up to $200 and higher and recession will happen if it stays at an elevated level for any long period of time. As of now, it is not likely that anything bad will happen. In these day and age, a monarchy can’t stay in power for an extended period of time.

Even Obama attacked the family of Saud as early as October 2, 2002 in his first foreign policy speech dubbed “Iraq War Speech”: “You want a fight, President Bush? Let’s fight to make sure our so-called allies in the Middle East, the Saudis and the Egyptians, stop oppressing their own people, and suppressing dissent, and tolerating corruption and inequality. . . .” In May 2011, Obama uttered these words on the monarchy of Saudi Arabia: “Prosperity also requires tearing down walls that stand in the way of progress -– the corruption of elites who steal from their people; the red tape that stops an idea from becoming a business; the patronage that distributes wealth based on tribe or sect.” It is clear that things are different under Obama and something unexpected will happen in that region. We just don’t know when.

Saudi’s neighboring country, Bahrain, a Shiite nation, of course, is a very small but important country in the region’s geopolitical scene. America has its 6th Air Carrier Fleet there and it is a small oil producing country in the Middle East. It is also a troubling time bomb waiting to explode. In the early days of March 2011, political protest by the Shiite majority (about 70% of its population) against the Sunni monarchy has been going on for more than a week or two. Saudi, being a Sunni state, was worried because the unrest may spread to its own soil. On March 14, 2011, 2,000 soldiers, 1,200 from Saudi Arabia and 800 from UAE, entered the small country and crushed the protests. Iran, a Shiite dominated country, rejected the military action and called it an invasion.

Iraq and Afghanistan are two countries invaded by the America in their wars against terror. President Bush started the war against Taliban in Afghanistan after 9-11, forced Osama into hiding, created a pro-America government in Kabul, rebuilt the war torn country with US tax money and left a not too small contingent there to prevent the resurgence of Taliban. President Bush then initiated the 2nd Iraq War in 2003, captured Saddam Hussein, created a government under Al Maliki (a pro-Iran Shiite), rebuilt the war-torn country with more US tax money and left a significant number of US soldiers behind to train the Iraqi Army. After Obama got into the WH, he, being a liberal, decided that America should leave Iraq for Iraqi people. Iraq also decided that the country didn’t want any US presence there. The withdraw of US military force began in 2009 and completed in December 2011. Since then, the world has witnessed the country mired in constant suicide bombings and armed attacks. America has no say on the country it helped to rebuild from the ground up and most of Iraqi oil is out of American oil companies’ control. The key for Iraq now is whether it can defend itself against rebels who want to overturn the government. The government is by no means friendly to the US and America has little to say about this country. It seemed to me that all the sacrifices American soldiers made with their lives, sweat and blood and those by other countries’ soldiers, have been in vain. Hundreds of billions, or as much as $6 trillion for Iraq and Afghanistan wars combined, of American tax dollars spent on this country has not gained the US a friend but a less hostile foe. Recent developments inside Iraq painted a worrisome picture because Al Qaeda has captured two cities in Southern Iraq: Fallujah and Ramadi while the capital city of Baghdad has seen bloodshed almost on a daily basis. Even though the problem is Iraqi’s, the implication could be felt worldwide as unrest continues.

American’s war in Afghanistan was less successful because, unlike Iraq where Iraqi tanks and soldiers had little place to hide, Afghanistan is a region best suited for defense. Bush recognized this from analyzing Russia’s defeat in the hands of Mujahedeen in late 1970’s and early 1980’s. As a result, Bush decided to leave some 10,000 soldiers to maintain the security around the site of the new government, the city of Kabul. After Obama got into the WH, he decided that a resurgence of military attack in Afghanistan was necessary. He increased the number of US soldiers there from around 10,000 to as many as 100,000 while Afghanistan posed no apparent threat to America’s national security. At the same time Obama also decided that the war in Afghanistan will end in 2014 and American forces will leave the country by 12/31/2104. In the interim 5 years, billions of US tax dollar have been spent to rebuild the country and thousands of American soldiers have lost their lives for no just cause at all.

As the deadline for withdraw fast approaching, US has requested a small number of American soldiers, 9,000 to 12,000, to be stationed in the country. Afghanistan’s president Kazai has refuse to sign the security treaty with the US and the decision will be pushed back into this year with the new government. More recently, Biden has floated the idea of leaving only 2,000 to 3,000 soldiers behind but a complete withdraw, the so-called “zero-option, is not out of the question either. In the mean time, the Afghanistan government’s control is only limited to the capital region and the majority of the country is really in no-man’s land. The situation there is not promising but I think American will be glad that the US is out of that country. The Obama Afghanistan war has achieved nothing and the only thing it has done is to give the new government some breathing room to build its own security forces. I don’t think it is enough. A total co9llapse is possible and in the end Al Qaeda may have to final say on this country. America’s war on terro will never end and it will be a drag on US resources for decades if not centuries to come. It will end when fundamentalist Muslims decide to stop attack America. It is not a very good picture if you are an American. 

Iran has been a headache for America because Iran has reportedly been working on a nuclear weapon for years and sanctions against the rogue nation have been less effective over the years. Since being the US president, Obama has repeatedly claimed that he will not allow Iran to acquire nuclear weapons.  But after Kerry was appointed secretary of state, America’s policy towards Iran has made an 180o turn probably because Obama and Kerry came to the realization that a nuclear Iran may be inevitable. The recent P5+1 and Iran talks (also called E3+EU+3 – Iran Talks) at Geneva have yielded significant benefits to Iran’s nuclear ambition. In essence, the international community has

  • Recognized Iran’s “right” to enrich uranium for “peaceful” energy purpose.
  • Iran has to “freeze” its nuclear program for 6 months and cease the work of a plutonium reprocessing facility at its Arak nuclear reactor.
  • Iran also agreed to stop enrich uranium at 5% level and accept IEAE cameras and inspections.
  • Iran will be allowed to access $4.2 billion fund previously frozen as part of the financial sanction against Iran by Western countries.
  • In addition, Iran will be allowed to produce its oil resources. It appeared that Iran has achieved the “greatest diplomatic triumph” over the objection of Israel and Saudi Arabia. Of course, Israel was quick to brand the deal as a “historical mistake” and said the world has changed to a more “dangerous” place. Saudi Arabia be I wouldn’t be surprised that one day we may witness a nuclear Iran which could threaten the entire region.

When we discuss the situation in the Middle East, we have to deal with Israel. To say that the situation there is complicated is a gross understatement because Obama, after his occupation of the WH, has completely turned the American foreign policy on Israel upside down. The assault on Israel began at home with Obama’s choices for the Secretary of State, Clinton and later Kerry, Secretary of Defense, Hagel and CIA chief, Brennan. All these four influential people are more or less against Israel’s policy and thing got worse from there.

Obama since 2009 has decided that it was necessary to adopt a new approach toward Israel; arguably the most trusted ally US has in the region since the late 1940’s. Obama reportedly has decided that Israel is the source of the unrest in Middle East and American policy on Israel has prevented the US having a normal relationship with 57 Muslim countries in the world. He chose to turn his back against Israel, specifically towards Netanyahu.

During his time in the WH, Obama made friendly offers to Palestine people and the Muslim world but changed his attitude towards Israel. At the same time, he continued to tell lies to American Jews, who overwhelmingly (80%) helped to vote him into the WH in 2009:

“I try not to pat myself too much on the back, but this administration has done more in terms of the security of the state of Israel than any previous administration.” 

But his actions and words said something quite different. In fact, Obama could be the most hostile president against Israel since Jimmy Carter. Consider the following from Obama:

  • Obama, in his Cairo speech, demanded unprecedented concessions from Israel while asking nothing from the Palestinians.
  • In the same speech, Obama accentuate the controversy that Israel exists only because of European nations’ guilt over the Holocaust and compared Palestinian’s “suffering” to genocide.
  • ·         In his 2010 UN speech, Obama talked about “coming back next year with a new member of the United Nations; an independent and sovereign state of Palestine.
  • The United States under Obama does not accept the legitimacy of continued Israeli settlements into West Bank and East Jerusalem and consider “settlement” as the source of what is wrong about the Israel-Arab conflict.
  • In May 2010, Obama demanded that Israel must come to the negotiating table with the precondition of returning to the “1967 borders.”
  • All the while, Obama has never condemned Palestinians to stop their anti-Semitic propaganda against Israel; such as publicly proclaiming that they will never recognize a Jewish State and calling for Israel’s destruction.
  • In May 2011, he pressed forward the theory of “linkage” which links the Arab-Israeli conflict to the root of all geopolitical problems in the Mideast and called on Israel to retreat to the so-called 1949 armistice lines. He also insisted on Arabs’ right of return.
  • Obama has withdrawn the landing rights for Israel airplanes to US airbases in the Middle East, Turkey, Iraq, and Saudi Arabia. Israel had these rights under the Bush, Clinton and Bush Jr. administrations. Now Israeli airplanes has no place to re-fuel anywhere in the Middle East except its own soil.
  • According to an unconfirmed report from a Wall Street insider, Obama has sent messages to Iran through back channels in Europe that America will not support an Israeli military attack of Iran’s nuclear facilities. It was said that there are 30 military facilities in Iran and four of them have underground bunkers.
  • Among the most egregious act by Obama was humiliating Netanyahu by forcing him to enter the WH through a service entrance for a meeting with Obama. It was reported that Obama deliberately served non-kosher food to Netanyahu and refused to dine with him.
  • During the same meeting, Obama lectured Netanyahu that he is not permitted to attack Iran, he has to withdraw all forces from the West Bank and he may not build any more settlements in East Jerusalem.
  • After insulting Netanyahu, Obama hosted Abbas at the WH and increased American assistance to the PA by $70 million.

Well, this is not the end of it. According to source linked to Chinese’s Xinhua news service that Kerry, US Secretary of State, proposed to Abbas to “return” 80, 000 Palestinian “refugees” to Israel. He also proposed to offer U.S. troops to help secure borders of the “New State of Palestine” and be stationed at Jordan Valley where Israeli forces are. There is also unconfirmed report that Kerry will support boycotting against Israeli products in Europe and against Israeli companies operating in Judea, Samaria, eastern Jerusalem and the Golan Heights if talk between Israel and PA fail to gain any traction.

Wow, we are really at an unprecedented moment in the Middle East conflict where Israel was humiliated, coerced and bullied by a seating US president who has convinced himself that Israel is the source of all Middle East problems while giving Muslims a big pass. He believed that American’s interests are at odds with those of Israel. Obama may actually sees Israel as the biggest threat against the United States and if Israel is gone, Muslims’ hatred against the US will be minimized.

In my humble opinion, I think that Obama, being a closet Muslim himself, believed that being unfriendly or even hostile to Israel would appease to Muslims in the region. He allegedly told Netanyahu that Israel needs the US but US doesn’t need Israel. Obama believed that hostility against Israel would in turn make Arab countries friendlier to Obama and the US. However, this one-sided policy has only one possible outcome: It will drive Israel away from the United States, solidify Israelis to stand up for their country’s survival and force Israel to take the matter in its own hands, reads military action, when it is necessary to do so.

Sure enough, Israel announced that it will continue its expansion project into West Bank and East Jerusalem with yet more new housing developments. As of now, there are as many as 700,000 settlers in these regions. Regarding Iran, Netanyahu has more than once said that they will bomb Iran’s nuclear facilities when it determines that the military is necessary.

What may also happen before Iran is about to gain an up-hand on nuclear weapons is a nuclear arm race where Saudi Arabia, Emirates, Turkey and Egypt may want to have the same capabilities in order to neutralize the threat from Iran.

Wow, what has this world finally come down to with one man’s anti-Israel policy? Was he trying to bring down the Netanyahu government? Was he trying to establishing a better relationship with Muslim countries by bashing Israel in public? Was he trying to hide his no-so-effective sanction policy against Iran’s nuclear ambition? Was he trying to withdraw America from the Middle East conflict because the US is financially incapable of doing so? And most important of them all, did Obama actually think his anti-Israel foreign policy has a chance of achieving lasting peace in the Middle East any time soon? I don’t have an answer but I think that Obama actually has a personal grudge against Netanyahu.

I am afraid to think what could be next in that region when the world thinks the danger of a nuclear Iran is over after the P5+1 and Iran Talk. I can say this unequivocally that there will be no world peace so long as new foreign policy experiments are being conducted by Obama with Israel on one side against Muslims on the other.  

We may have to settle for a post Israel era in the Middle East!

 

U.S. standing in the world is falling fast December 5, 2013

Posted by hslu in China, Economics, Global Affair, Islam, Military, Muslim, Obama, Politics.
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The survey said it all (chart below from Pew Research.) It is sad to watch but it was inevitable. The US empire is heading into sunset with Obama leading the charge. The process will be slow and Chinese has a saying for it too: ”百足之虫,死而不僵.“

Source: Pew Research, December 3, 2013

Source: Pew Research Center, December 3, 2013

For almost seven decades since the end of WWII, the US has used two powerful weapons very effectively to bring other countries in line: US dollar and its military. it is still true but they have been less effective to say the least.

Don’t get me wrong, the United States still has a lot of money not because the US is the largest creditor in the world but because the US dollar is world’s reserve currency. Here the landscape is slowly changing and the US isn’t doing anything about it, yet: the US owes a lot of money to other countries and is running a trillion dollar or so deficit every year. Its $17 trillion dollar federal debt, unfunded liabilities and other government debts will break American tax payers’ back soon. In short, the US is broke and is fast running out of money to give it away.

The bigger problem is that the US dollar’s reserve currency status has been challenged by IMF and many other countries who don’t want to hold a currency with declining value. The push to move away from the US dollar as the world reserve currency is accelerating with IMF readies its Special Drawing Right (SDR) or some other form of currency to take place of the US dollar. Something will happen within the next decade and when it happens, the glory days of the US empire are numbered. it will be ugly. And whoever had assests in US dollar better be prepared for its demise.

America still has the most powerful and advanced weapons in the world. No other countries has any hope of over taking US’s leadership position any time soon. However, the lead is shrinking with Al Qaeda and related organizations regrouping in many parts of the world and China slowly building up its navy and air force in recent years. Many other countries, India, Pakistan, North Korea, etc. have their own nuclear arsenals too. Besides, where will the US going to come up with money to keep its lead in the never ending arm race? With more debt of course. But it can’t be sustained in the long run. Remember, America is broke.

America’s foreign policy is a mess.

Hillary didn’t do a lot other than taking expensive trips all over the world making speeches. Nothing of any significant consequence got done under her.

Obama drew a “red line” in the sand and warned Syria of grave consequence if it dared to cross it. Well, for a couple of years, Bashar al-Assad did it time and time again. Obama kept warning Assad but did nothing to stop him. Finally, Putin, among all foreign country leaders, came to the rescue and gave Obama a black eye for all Arab countries to see. Obama messed up on Arab Spring and didn’t know whom to back in Egypt and couldn’t even decide whether overthrowing its first elected president, president Morsi, by the military was a coup or not. Yet, foreign aid in the form of fighter jets and other weapons continued to flow to Egyptian military as we speak. The whole episode was simply comical.

Obama also projected an image of profound weakness in Benghazi where four Americans, including American Ambassador to Libya, were killed on September 11, 2012. There was talk of a video, justice for the dead, retaliation and finally a cover-up by the Obama administration, but nothing has happened either. It was all speeches and no action.

Then there was Snowden, the hijack and grounding of Bolivia president’s private airplane, the uproar against America throughout Latin America, Snowden’s one-year asylum in Russia thanks to Putin and the fall out from NSA’s monitoring of American citizens, world leaders and many other’s emails, social media activities and phone conversations. The worst of them all was the self-appointed human rights’ guardian, America, was totally exposed for its brazen disregard of other’s people’s privacy and human dignity. China has something for this too: 挂羊头卖狗肉。It is also called: 了无羞耻。The world now knows what America really is: a hypocrite. But it was a hypocrite with all kinds of weapons in its hands. 

Of course, we can’t ignore Iraq, Afghanistan and Iran. So many American soldiers died for Iraq but the US was chased out of Iraq. Iraqis simply didn’t want America in their country. Obama nonetheless learned his lesson from the failure in Iraq and is trying to keep some US soldiers in Afghanistan enticed with more US foreign aids. The decision was to come at the end of the year but Harmid Karzai wanted to delay it. 

Then there was Iran.

Kerry got Iran to talk and agree to curb its atomic activities in exchange for less sanctions. Yet, not much has changed because Iran insisted on continuing its uranium enrichment operation. Well, Iran certainly bought more time to work on a nuclear weapon and at the same time got the sanction monkey off its back. Kerry and Obama did well too: they took credit for contribute to peace in Middle East until one day Iran shows up with a nuclear weapon just like North Korea did under Clinton with the help of the worst American president in recent history: Carter. History probably will repeat itself and a war may be in the works. Well, what’s ironic with this whole thing was that many Democrats in Obama’s own party oppose the deal with Iran. We’ll just have to wait and see here.

And let’s not forget Israel since we are talking about Iran here. Contrary to all previous US presidents who have backed Israel in the past, Obama chose to isolate and humiliate Israel; I guessed, as a goodwill gesture to Arabs and Middle East countries. He definitely succeed in putting Israel in a precarious position and has truly demonstrated that he desperately wanted to be treated as a Muslim by other Arabs.

It appears that the US has very fewer friend in the world. Arabs don’t like the US other than its money and weapons. NSA has monitored Merkel’s cell phone for many years and Obama lied when he told her that he knew nothing about it. I don’t think Germans believed anything Obama said.Many European countries hate America because the Great Recession engineered by US Federal Reserve Bank, Wall Street, large US banks and many other financial institutions. The United States is solely responsible for the miseries many Europeans are facing now: 25% unemployment rate, five years recession in some countries, huge reduction is people’s living standards and massive destruction of people’s wealth, just to name a few.

Well, then there is Japan.

Japan is on the top of the list because the US is spending billions and billions of our tax dollars to defend the island country. Japan has to listen to the US because it has few military options. All Japanese leaders can do is to visit the Yasukuni Shrine which honors Japan’s war dead, including convicted war criminals and mass murderers from World War II. The US has to spend its own money to defend Japan because America bombed Japan with two atomic bombs during WWII. After achieving phenomenon economic growth in the 1980’s, Japan is currently in such a sorry state (The Lost decade,) primarily because of Plaza Accord engineered by America. Ever since that historical and unprecedented event in NYC, Japan took 20 years to sink its country into a debt hole so deep that it has no way to dig itself out of. For that, a generation of Japanese people have no one but America to thank for. What puzzles me was that Japan still call America a friend. Having a friend like this who was responsible for its demise for the past 20+ years, Japan doesn’t need an enemy at all.

Tension has been high in Eastern Pacific recently. The big question is this: Will US send its soldiers to fight for Japan over a few islands in the Pacific Ocean? Japan certainly likes that idea but I don’t think Americans are ready for another war after Iraq and Afghanistan. Besides, the US has almost ran out of money and time until the world decides to dump US dollar and go for something else. 

If that happens, anyone who holds American dollar will become poorer probably overnight and the once mighty empire will forever lose its glory.

Even though the show has just started, we already knew what the ending will look like.

History will repeat itself and we all knew it too well: Rome, Portugal, Spain, France and Great Britain.

The next one will be the United States.

 

Middle Eastern Food Festival, Northern Virginia August 31, 2013

Posted by hslu in Cooking, Food, Religion.
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I didn’t realize that this is the 20th year this church had this food Festival. I also didn’t know that there is a big church on Leiwensville Road even though I have driven by this place hundreds of times.

The festival is held every year over the labor day weekend.

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I came here for the food even though I can’t eat a lot.

There were hundreds of people when we got there around 2 pm. There were about 100 people in the big hall already when we got there and there was a line to order food.

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We had #3 platter which was M’nezzeleh: roasted egg plant with ground lamb and beef. The sides were rice, salad called fattoush and 2 small pieces of pita bread.

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The roast egg plant was great: well cooked and very flavorful. I didn’t think I tasted any lamb thougg and there was little meat to begin with. The rice was a little under cooked though.

Fattoush was fresh and well seasoned. We also got some sweets and we like it too because they weren’t soaked in syrup.

We also had some roasted lamb which took 6 hours to prepare. The lamb meat was tender, juicy and slightly seasoned and best of all was it didn’t have that lamb taste. I like it.

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We had a lot of fun.

BTW, 10% if all the proceeds will be donated to people in the Middle East who have been suffering from the war.

Obama hides behind the red line August 29, 2013

Posted by hslu in China, Cold War, Congress, Global Affair, Islam, Muslim, Obama, Religion.
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Obama drew a red line in the sand for Assad and warned that it’s a line he shall not cross.

“You shall not use chemical weapons, period.” so said the world leader Obama.

Well,we now know that chemical weapons were used in Syria and US has pictures, patients, bodies and phone conversations, provided by NSA in Maryland of course,  to proof that Syria had used it on its own people.

It’s apparent that the red line has been crossed and our world leader is prepared to deliver his promise; he was eager to bomb Syria as if the US didn’t have enough enemies in Middle East already.

Assets were put in place. Destroyers got their 200 or so cruises missiles ready. Air carriers were sent there on the double.

Targets have been chosen and America is willing to take collateral damages. This is war, come on. Innocent people die in the war, period. Besides they aren’t Americans. The all mighty United States can’t help it. We have already done our best. What more are you asking for, anyway?

Everyone in the military was ready to take down Assad’s regime and all the brass in Pentagon was waiting for was the order from the community organizer from Chicago.

“War is imminent,” we we told in uncertain terms by the WH spokeswoman.

“It could come as early as Thursday.” Rumors flied as if bombing was just around the corner.

Wall Street was on the edge. Dow Jones dropped a couple hundred points. Crude oil traders were on the move. Gold made a four month high. The unknown gripped the financial and currency markets. The entire world was sitting on a bed of needles.

Then a day or two passed. A lot of smoke from the WH but there was no action.

In the mean time, Russia warned US not to do it. Assad vowed to defend his nation. Iran wanted to start a regional war. Israel was nervous. China advised caution.

All the sudden, the red line changed into a black line and Obama is desperately looking for a way out; we called this “Obama 在找一个台阶下。”

Well, 台阶 may not be there for Obama to step down in the minds of millions of Muslims in the world.

To them Obama had just turned into a chicken and they now dare Obama to start bombing.

 

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