Why the US Hasn’t Brought “Fire and Fury” to North Korea

As the world ponders the meaning of President Donald Trump’s threat of “fire and fury” on North Korea, it’s worth asking why his predecessors never took those steps to stop its nuclear program. Trump isn’t the first president to threaten North Korea. The others were all bluffing.

When Bill Clinton was confronted with the threat of North Korea’s exit from the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, he considered military force. But he ended up going for negotiations in what became known as the Joint Framework Agreement. The North Koreans froze their plutonium program in exchange for fuel shipments and a light water reactor from the U.S. Neither side ever fully delivered.

Then there was George W. Bush. He didn’t like North Korea. He put the nation in the original “axis of evil.” On his watch, the U.S. discovered Pyongyang had a secret uranium enrichment program, in violation of the spirit of Clinton’s deal. Then in 2006, North Korea tested its first nuclear device. By 2007, Bush had lifted crippling sanctions on the regime’s elites and entered into new negotiations. And surprise: The North Koreans backed out of those talks at the end, too.

By the time Barack Obama came into power, the North Koreans were back to building up their program. They perfected missiles, sunk a South Korean ship and shelled a South Korean island. The current tyrant, Kim Jong Un, ascended to power and proceeded to consolidate his position, killing his uncle and later his half brother. All the while, Obama pursued a policy of “strategic patience,” aimed at not rewarding Kim’s regime for its provocations and rogue behavior.

Now Trump has inherited a mess. Not only is Kim testing ballistic missiles at an alarming rate, as the Washington Post reported this week, but also the Defense Intelligence Agency now assesses North Korea can miniaturize a nuclear warhead so that it can fit inside a missile. Game, set, match.

So why didn’t the last three presidents take out North Korea’s nuclear facilities when they had the chance? The answer is Seoul, the thriving capital of South Korea. The North has enough artillery pieces within range of this metropolis to kill hundreds of thousands of people, which could very well begin a world war and throw the global economy into a tailspin.

Past presidents have understandably feared the North would retaliate in this way. But for some today, that fear is fading. John Plumb, a former director of defense policy and strategy for Obama’s National Security Council, told the Atlantic last month: “If I were the Trump administration, I would be looking at the threat to incinerate Seoul and trying to figure out how real it is. Because to me, it’s become such a catchphrase, and it almost — it starts to lose credibility. Attacking Seoul, a civilian population center, is different from attacking a remote military outpost. It’s dicey, there’s no doubt about it.”

Intelligence officials have said in recent months that this threat remains very real. While there are steps the U.S. can take to mitigate the problem, such as dropping cluster munitions on the big guns, it’s an imperfect and high-risk strategy. An attack on North Korea would be unpredictable and could unleash far worse on U.S. forces (which have been stationed in South Korea for more than 60 years), not to mention allies like Japan.

All of this gets back to Trump’s bluster. At this point we as Americans ought to expect more careful words from the president. At the same time, nothing Trump said was that different from the implicit threat against North Korea, or any power that threatens American cities with nuclear destruction.

Don’t get me wrong: There are few people on the planet more deserving of “fire and fury” than Kim Jong Un. But would such a strike even eliminate its nuclear program? How far is Trump willing to go? Will he order an invasion of North Korea to topple the regime? And if he does, would he commit the manpower, capital and time to stabilize the country once the Kim dynasty falls?

According to retired Admiral William Perry, Clinton’s second secretary of defense, the U.S. couldn’t even take out North Korea’s nuclear infrastructure with military strikes, given how much it has expanded in the last 20 years. What’s more, the price paid by South Koreans would be unacceptable. This is what he told a group of journalists this spring at an event sponsored by the Hoover Institution.

It’s possible that Trump is counting on his reputation as an impetuous novice — one who Kim just might fear would roll the dice by attacking North Korea. But Trump’s ultimatum allows the boy-tyrant in Pyongyang to test the president’s mettle. (Already the North Korean state media has threatened Guam.) We can expect more taunts and threats in the coming days, proving Trump’s threat was hollow. As hollow as past presidents’ pledges to do the same.

Do Powerful People in DC Really Want to Know the Truth?

You may remember that the IRS was accused of auditing some conservative groups for political reasons. That is illegal. The woman in charge of the office where that allegedly happened was Lois Lerner. She was called to testify in front of a congressional committee. She took the Fifth Amendment. So after that Ms. Lerner packed up and left the IRS with a nice government pension. Absolutely nothing happened to her. And we never learn if higher government officials were involved.

I believe the Obama administration did not want to know what happened with the IRS. The leftwing media did not want to know, nor did the Democratic Party.

Today we have two big time political allegations: Whether the Trump campaign colluded with Russia and whether National Security Advisor Susan Rice was spying on the Trump campaign and transition team using her position with President Obama to surveil and hurt Mr. Trump. Answers to both of those questions have not been provided to the American people, as they must be if we are to keep our election system legitimate. The FBI is investigating the Russia deal. I’m not sure where the agency is on the illegal surveillance issue. The bureau has not defined it.

But Congress is looking into Ms. Rice to conduct a bipartisan investigation, but its not likely, as Democrats and the liberal media have already acquitted Susan Rice.

“One of the central figures the Republicans went after and after and after was Susan Rice. And after two years they could find nothing that Susan Rice did wrong.”-REP. ADAM SCHIFF (D-CA)

Congressman Schiff, ranking member of the House Intelligence Committee, speaking about Ms. Rice’s role in the Benghazi investigation and putting forth the opinion that she is a scapegoat even before any testimony is heard. Does Congressman Schiff really want to know what happened in the surveillance deal? You make the call.

But it is obvious his fellow travelers on the left do not want to know. In fact, the loons are now branding the whole thing racial.

“Did she do something wrong? There is no information indicating that. So they are making her, you know, basically, they’re defaming her without any reason to do so because she’s a woman. Maybe because she’s a black woman.”-DAVID CORN, MOTHER JONES WASHINGTON BUREAU CHIEF

Sure. Anyone who thinks Rice may have been involved in spying on Trump is obviously a racist. It’s so clear and undeniable now I feel like a moron for not seeing that before. (Please sense the sarcasm.)

Susan Rice is entitled to the presumption of innocence and should be called by Congress to testify as soon as possible. But with Easter break quickly approaching, that call will be down the road. At that time I expect Ms. Rice to take the Fifth, just as Lois Lerner did. That means others in government will have to step forward to testify about what Susan Rice did or did not do in order for we the people to know.

Yesterday, President Trump said that he believes the surveillance situation is

“going to be the biggest story.  It’s such an important story for our country and the world. It is one of the big stories of our time.”

It is clear the president has a vested interest in this having tweeted he was surveilled by President Obama himself.  So obviously Mr. Trump would like to know the truth. But the anti-Trump folks will try to prevent sunlight on Susan Rice, no question about it. Because if the former national security advisor was using her very high office to help the Democratic Party before and after the election, that is a huge scandal and President Obama will have to be questioned. That’s a big if, and premature conclusions as well as speculation are the enemies of true justice.

The polls say that most Americans want answers to the Russian intrusion into the presidential election, and I believe most of us want to know the full Susan Rice story as well. If the federal government cannot define both fairly quickly, this nation is in major trouble. America simply has to have a justice system that works.

The Left Cannot Get Over Their Election Loss

Friday, Tom Perez, the newly anointed chair of the DNC (the party that lost the White House, the Senate, and the House of Representatives), called the forty fifth President of the United States a bully and someone who really didn’t win the election. In fact Perez had even more to say in his rant:

“We have a bully in Washington in the White House. Donald Trump, you don’t stand for our values! Donald Trump, you didn’t win this election! Donald Trump, your bromance with Vladimir Putin isn’t doing you any good! Donald Trump, we will resist!” -Tom Perez, DNC Chair

Don’t stand for our values? What are “our values”? And what values do you want us Americans to resist? Law and order? The letter of the law? The Constitution? The obligatory power of the President to protect Americans?

While the left acts like children and just cannot get over the fact that Hillary lost the election and won’t stop their abusive invectives against the man who was CONSTITUTIONALLY elected, calling him illegitimate and his Cabinet scumbags; that man is doing his job we hired him to do. He is building up and modernizing the military, as well as strengthening law enforcement. With General John Kelly, he is ridding this country free of some of the most dangerous elements, who simply don’t belong here and weren’t allowed here in the first place. Like the violent gang members, the ones the leftists city mayors want to keep here, risking the safety of their own law abiding Americans. And with General James Mattis, the military is poised to eliminate those cockroaches known as ISIS, just as President Trump promised.

Imagine a president who not only does what he says, but can actually figure out what the end goal is. As opposed to President Obama’s foreign policy was to have no strategy and that graduated to “contain ISIS and to degrade and destroy them”, all of which never happened. 

And all the while, these wusses obsessing that Russia interfered with our election and our democracy. But these bozos still haven’t figured out what exactly Russia did. But they must have done something because Queen Hillary should have been coronated. Instead of admitting that the woman was so desperate for power (as she set up a private server to collect money and run the government) anyway… you know the rest. The Russians didn’t write her emails that sunk her, she did. And by the way, the Russians didn’t give Hillary the questions before the CNN debate, Donna Brazile did. And no one seems to care or want to investigate that Barack Obama danced with the devil in Tehran, whose people cut off our heads because we’re infidels, you know the the ones who yell “death to America!” The ones he gave one hundred and fifty billion dollars to and another four hundred million that they thought they could quietly get away with.

So while they moan and groan about blowing up the White House and and literally try to suppress our free speech by burning down our building, our president is doing what we hired him to do. 

He’s building up the military and he’s dealing with the greatest historical threat that faces America today: the threat of the Chinese-backed North Korea. Whose leader, Kim Jong-un, is as unbalanced as President Obama’s budget. If or when the clash of the titans does come, these leftist wimps will be the first to pee in their pants and run under their desks and thank their lucky stars that President Donald John Trump and his generals have the guts and the instincts to put on their big boy pants every morning to face the reality of the real danger that is confronting America today. 

How the Battle of Obamacare Affects You

This is a classic left-right brawl. President Obama and the Democrats wanted to provide healthcare to Americans who couldn’t or wouldn’t pay for it. Republicans and President Trump don’t want to do that. So, the battle lines have been drawn. Here are the facts:

  • Eighty one percent of those with Obamacare will receive government assistance in 2017.
  • Some people will have their entire healthcare premium paid for by the government.
  • Obamacare cost American taxpayers $100 billion in 2016.

That’s the essence of Obamacare. All Americans are forced to buy health insurance so that the have-nots can be subsidized and covered by the haves. It’s estimated that since Obamacare has been passed, thirteen million people have health insurance who did not have it before.

Enter President Trump. He says that Obamacare costs way too much and is a disaster in every way. So the Republicans will put forth a new national health care plan. This one won’t order you to buy health insurance. 

If you don’t buy it, your option will be to go to the emergency room and get treated. If you can’t pay, the taxpayer picks it up just like the old days. If you can’t afford health insurance premiums, the Republicans want the states to handle it through Medicaid. President Trump and his acolytes essentially want out of the healthcare business. They’d send federal money to the individual states so they can handle it. But Medicaid tax dollars will be capped. 

Liberals don’t want that at all. They want the feds to dictate health insurance costs along with who gets it free or subsidized. That’s essentially where we are.

The key question for you (the American people) is, will your healthcare premiums go up or down once when Obamacare is history? Yesterday, the Congressional Budget Office said that under the GOP plan, the feds would spend about $337 billion less subsidizing healthcare over the next ten years. But about twenty one million more Americans will not have health insurance by the year 2020. Again, that would mostly be their own choice not to have insurance. The Congressional Budget Office doesn’t know what might happen if insurance companies are allowed to compete nationwide, which they can’t do now. Will that drive premiums down? That’s the hope on the Trump side.

But not on the left: Senator Bernie Sanders is angry because the GOP healthcare plan knocks out an Obamacare payroll tax and a tax on investment income. Sanders says that gives money to the rich people. That’s always the argument from the left. The left argues that any tax breaks, especially on investment income, helps the wealthy. But the Trump administration has promised to lower taxes. Their healthcare plan does that. It’s simply impossible for you (the American consumer) to know what is real and what is fake in this Obamacare debate.

Summing up, liberals want a big entitlement culture. Some uber-conservatives want few, if any, entitlements. While more moderate conservatives want the states to handle healthcare entitlements with limits. 

What We, the People, Are Entitled To From Our Government 

There is great confusion all over the country about rights and what the government really owes us. Essentially, there are three major expectations that the government should meet under the constitutional banner of the pursuit of happiness.

Number one, security. We are entitled to have an effective defense against people who would kill us. But today, our security is wobbling because of hackers and leakers, and the federal government does not seem to be able to stop the espionage. While many Americans don’t pay attention, this issue, that we cannot guard our defense secrets or even protect the President of the United States when he talks to a foreign leader, is something that America has never seen before. The high-tech world is creating threats to our security that are almost out of control. This is, perhaps, the most important issue the federal government faces right now. 

But close to that is health care. Since Obamacare was passed, Americans now are entitled to an affordable medical system that can alleviate their suffering. All of us are going to get sick, and we will need help. But right now, that help is confusing, to say the least.

The guiding principles of health care should be that is financially reasonable, affordable, but you have direct access to the doctors you want, and that you are not bogged down in a chaotic system of red tape and delays. So Congress has a lot of work to do, to put a fair health care system in place.

Finally, all American adults should have access to the free marketplace. By that I mean, you can’t be denied a job because of your color, your race, or anything else. Also, the government needs to put SENSIBLE guidelines in place that protect workers from exploitation with many unions now politically corrupted, the Feds and the states have much more responsibility to working Americans. 

That’s it. That is all what we are owed. The Bernie Sanders philosophy that everybody should be guaranteed a job and a set wage and shepherded through life is not what America is all about. We compete here but in some cases, some Americans are not treated fairly in the marketplace. Best example, children from families who don’t really care about them. These kids are often thrown into awful schools and wash out early without much of an education. They have little chance to succeed economically in this country.

For far too long, Americans looked away from that reality. Every American child deserves a quality education, and right now, the system is not providing that for millions of kids. That must change.

But most importantly, “man is not free unless government is limited.”

Treason In the Air

I can feel it coming in the air tonight, oh Lord…

Can you feel it coming in the air tonight, oh Lord, oh Lord

-Phil Collins

Somebody either leaked or hacked into CIA files that explained how US intelligence tracks the enemies of the nation. WikiLeaks says it has released almost nine thousand documents from the CIA Center for Cyber Intelligence. A Wall Street Journal editorial put it this way: 

The losses from this exposure are incalculable. These tools represent millions of dollars of investment and man-hours. Many will now be rendered moot as terrorists or foreign agents abandon traceable habits.

ISIS, al-Qaeda, and other killers now know how the US is tracking them. 

Therefore, the leaks are a treasonous act. 

According to Reuters, the CIA breach took place during the Obama administration. Apparently many of the CIA’s computer systems are outdated (some more than forty years old), easily hacked into, and easily the targets of theft. Also that bids are out to high-tech companies to upgrade intelligence agencies’ computer facilities. That would cost tens of billions of dollars, but its very necessary in this very dangerous world. But no matter how sophisticated the hardware gets, we still have people committing treason inside the government. Since taking office, President Trump has been bedeviled by classified information being fed to the anti-Trump press. 

So now we have a growing catastrophe. Obviously the CIA and other intelligence agencies can’t protect their secrets. So far, only a few individuals have been charged with violating national security. I also believe that leakers of classified documents are actively committing treason. The federal government doesn’t have a handle on how to apprehend these traitors and stop the espionage. America is the most sophisticated country in the world. But we can’t protect the private conversations of our leader, our intelligence secrets, or our counter-terrorism measures.

Obviously this is a dangerous situation. President Trump should order the FBI to aggressively investigate all leaks and hacks as a top priority. Yesterday, House Judiciary Committee Republicans requested a meeting with FBI director Comey on the hacking and leaks. Director Comey should do that as quickly as possible and it should be televised. The Americans need to know if this situation is completely out of control. 

Wiretaps, Collusion, and Chaos! (Cont’d)

Here is a continuation of what I said yesterday, I feel that there were some unsaid things.

There should be indictments against those who leak national security information. Let’s hope that some justice comes out of this chaos.

As I said yesterday, there are only two stone-cold facts that the media can report in this entire debacle. Michael Flynn’s communication with Russia’s ambassador to the US was intercepted. That happened, but we do not know who ordered it and how it went down. Obviously, the American people are entitled to know. Someone leaked the conversations between Flynn and the Russian ambassador to the press. That’s a felony. So, we need to know who the leaker is. Associated with that, then-Attorney General Loretta Lynch finalized a change in how the National Security Agency shares raw intelligence, just days before Obama left office. We need to know why exactly that happened. The NSA sharing raw information with the FBI and CIA and other intelligence agencies, creates more of a potential for leaks. And that’s exactly what happened. Some of President Trump’s calls to the Mexican President, the Australian Prime Minister, and other high level officials were leaked to the press. So in effect, the Obama administration MAY have (I emphasize may) created chaos for the Trump administration by allowing unsubstantiated intelligence information to be spread across various agencies. 

It’s subversion if that were done intentionally to harm the incoming president. 

As I’ve said before, Congress must get to the bottom of the situation. There are ongoing investigations in the House and in the Senate to find out if Russian officials colluded with the Trump campaign. So far there is no evidence of that. We also don’t know anything solid about wiretaps and leaks concerning Donald Trump and we need to know.