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Trump Moves in Syria and Afghanistan (edited title)


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#1 LFC

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Posted 11 April 2018 - 10:59 AM

Larison lays it out. Plenty of people have predicted that Trump would lash out militarily somewhere in the world as he Mueller managed to back him further and further into a corner. He's an animal lashing out and he doesn't really care who he hurts as long as he hurts someone.

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U.S. military action against Syria may happen in the next few days:

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President Trump vowed Monday that the United States would take swift action in retaliation for a suspected chemical weapons attack on civilians in Syria, amid hurried diplomacy that signaled allied military strikes may be imminent.

The president will very likely order an illegal attack on another government in the coming days. Trump has no authority to order an attack on the Syrian government, which has not attacked the U.S. and doesn’t pose any threat to America or its allies. There is no international mandate for military action against Syria, and there is no vital American interest at stake that might conceivably justify an attack. That said, in the absence of concerted resistance from Congress and the public, he will be able to get away with this illegal attack just as he got away with the illegal attack he ordered last year.

For all of the ceaseless clamor about Trump’s incipient authoritarianism, few of his domestic opponents care when he illegally uses military force overseas. When Trump tramples on the Constitution to wage illegal war, he is confirming the practice of his recent predecessors rather than breaking with it. Most of his domestic opponents don’t care about executive overreach and illegal warfare, and they are more likely than not to applaud him for ordering an attack.

The president incredibly suggested that attack on Syria had something to do with humanitarian concerns:

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“We are very concerned when a thing like that can happen,” the president said in a somber tone. “This is about humanity. We’re talking about humanity. And it can’t be allowed to happen.”

The same president who enables war crimes and famine in Yemen has no business talking about humanity or opposing atrocities. It is not just that the Trump administration applies two radically different standards for how it responds to the atrocities committed by other governments, but also that it is actively involved in facilitating the atrocities of its clients while pretending to be horrified by the war crimes of others. Unfortunately, the U.S.-backed war on Yemen will receive even less attention than it already does because of the focus on a possible U.S. attack on Syria, and the one war that the U.S. has the influence to stop with relative ease will continue while our government needlessly escalates its involvement in another war.

" 'Individual conscience' means that women only get contraceptives if their employers, their physicians, their pharmacists, their husbands and/or fathers, pastors, and possibly their mayors, Governors, State Secretaries of Health, Congressmen, Senators, and President all agree that in that particular case they're justifiable." --D.C. Sessions

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#2 Rue Bella

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Posted 11 April 2018 - 11:19 AM

Attacking Syria? Who cares??? Overturning Roe v. Wade however...
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#3 JackD

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Posted 11 April 2018 - 11:47 AM

Who cares? Syrians maybe?

#4 andydp

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Posted 11 April 2018 - 02:35 PM

 LFC, on 11 April 2018 - 10:59 AM, said:

Larison lays it out. Plenty of people have predicted that Trump would lash out militarily somewhere in the world as he Mueller managed to back him further and further into a corner. He's an animal lashing out and he doesn't really care who he hurts as long as he hurts someone.

Let's review:

The scene is the White House situation Room, Lou Dobbs has given his courses of action briefing. The President renders his decision:

"We have an Air Force, we have missiles, we have targeted airfields. let's do a bombing run to make my people happy !!"

Once again, an empty show of force that will mean absolutely nothing.

Any military person knows you cannot secure anything unless there's a person sitting on the objective. But "the people" will love it because "America is not taking any crap."
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#5 gmat

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Posted 14 April 2018 - 09:57 AM

A lot of pushback from Trump’s base, and people on Fox saying negative things about Trump, regarding any US military action in Syria, including punitive attacks for CW.

So, a limited strike for Trump to prove he’s not-Obama. (He seems obsessed with Obama, which probably started when Obama ridiculed him at that media dinner a few years ago)

Hopefully no Russians get killed.

Then the US exits Syria and Iraq for good.

#6 indy

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Posted 14 April 2018 - 10:35 AM

Who said: "Be prepared, there is a small chance that our horrendous leadership could unknowingly lead us into World War III."

That would be Donald J Trump in 2013. Apparently, what he lacks in cognitive ability is made up for with precognitive ability.

#7 D. C. Sessions

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Posted 14 April 2018 - 10:58 AM

 gmat, on 14 April 2018 - 09:57 AM, said:

Then the US exits Syria and Iraq for good.

Or until someone in Pakistan (or California) says something he doesn't like, at which point he orders 231 cruise missiles fired at Baghdad.
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#8 nuser

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Posted 14 April 2018 - 12:18 PM

Could Trump be: Paranoid schizoid, obsessive compulsive , kinky pussy grabber
Anyway you view him he is a threat to people and wildlife everywhere. He must go!

#9 D. C. Sessions

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Posted 14 April 2018 - 01:49 PM

 nuser, on 14 April 2018 - 12:18 PM, said:

He must go!

Patience. Short of 70+ years of trying to fake his way through health [1] catching up to him, our first chance will come in late 2020.

[1] like he has every single other thing he's done
The way a lot of catastrophes happen is that X doesn't occur because there are safeguards in place, therefore people assume X isn't a worry and they remove the safeguards. Then X happens.
— Nate Silver
"Robots aren't the problem. Capitalism is." -- Last words of Stephen Hawking.
These days, "libertarian" is just a euphemism for a Nazi who's afraid to commit.
"If you're not outraged, you're not paying attention." -- Heather Heyer
"I'd rather have my child, but by golly, if I gotta give her up, we're gonna make it count." -- Her mother
"Your purpose, then, plainly stated, is that you will destroy the Government, unless you be allowed to construe and enforce the Constitution as you please, on all points in dispute between you and us. You will rule or ruin in all events." -- some RINO

#10 Rich T Bikkies

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Posted 14 April 2018 - 02:00 PM

 D. C. Sessions, on 14 April 2018 - 10:58 AM, said:

Or until someone in Pakistan (or California) says something he doesn't like, at which point he orders 231 cruise missiles fired at Baghdad.

It might be 231 cruise missiles fired at Pakistan or California. Things have moved on. The latest Mueller-Cohen stuff has made him much, much angrier and crazier.
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#11 LFC

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Posted 30 May 2018 - 11:38 AM

I continue to be ashamed by Trump being elected.

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Though the White House has taken pains to keep a February U.S.-Russia skirmish in Syria under wraps, President Donald Trump had no such reservations at a Wednesday fundraiser in Manhattan where he bragged that American troops took out hundreds of Russians in as little as ten minutes, according to a Tuesday Politico report.

According to the New York Times, the fighting actually lasted about four hours, leaving 300 to 400 pro-Assad troops dead.

Per Politico, the fundraiser took place in midtown’s Lotte New York Palace Hotel where top donors could get a ticket for $50,000 per person.

Trump also reportedly patted himself on the back for moving the U.S. Embassy in Israel to Jerusalem, saying that he does not blame other presidents for lacking the courage needed to go through with the aggressive move.

The event reportedly raised $5 million to be used for both Trump’s campaign and the RNC.

" 'Individual conscience' means that women only get contraceptives if their employers, their physicians, their pharmacists, their husbands and/or fathers, pastors, and possibly their mayors, Governors, State Secretaries of Health, Congressmen, Senators, and President all agree that in that particular case they're justifiable." --D.C. Sessions

"That's the problem with being implacable foes - no one has any incentive to treat you as anything more than an obstacle to be overcome."

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#12 LFC

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Posted 19 December 2018 - 11:16 AM

Well there's a switch. Now Trump wants to be completely out of Syria. Apparently we've defeated ISIS.

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Trump tweeted Wednesday: “We have defeated ISIS in Syria, my only reason for being there during the Trump Presidency.”

His tweet followed a series of news reports that the U.S. is preparing to withdraw its troops from Syria. The news was first reported by the Wall Street Journal.

Responding to the reports, Pentagon spokesman Col. Rob Manning issued a statement, saying: “At this time, we continue to work by, with and through our partners in the region.”


Why the sudden change? For the same reason that we were all afraid he'd attack somebody; LOOK! SQUIRREL!

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This is down deep in the NYT story just out on the open and public battle between the White House and the Pentagon over whether to withdraw immediately all U.S. troops from Syria:

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But one Defense Department official suggested that Mr. Trump also wants to divert attention away from the series of legal challenges confronting him over the recent days: the Russian investigation run by the special counsel as well as the sentencing of his former personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, in a hush-money scandal to buy the silence of two women who said they had affairs with Mr. Trump.

That’s an extraordinary allegation by a Pentagon official. Or more precisely an extraordinary ‘suggestion.’ In the narrowest sense, it’s a gloves-off fight over whether an abrupt withdrawal undermines or enhances U.S. strategic interests in the Middle East.

But in the broader sense, it’s an alarming level of irony that as the special counsel’s Russia probe closes in on President Trump, he would hastily order a withdrawal that the Pentagon argues would “cede foreign influence in Syria to Russia and Iran at a time when American policy calls for challenging both countries,” as the Times puts it.

" 'Individual conscience' means that women only get contraceptives if their employers, their physicians, their pharmacists, their husbands and/or fathers, pastors, and possibly their mayors, Governors, State Secretaries of Health, Congressmen, Senators, and President all agree that in that particular case they're justifiable." --D.C. Sessions

"That's the problem with being implacable foes - no one has any incentive to treat you as anything more than an obstacle to be overcome."

"The 'Road to Serfdom' is really all right turns." --Progressive Whisperer

""The GOP ... where every accusation is also a confession." --Progressive Whisperer

#13 JackD

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Posted 19 December 2018 - 12:26 PM

It would be interesting to hear that Defense Dept. official explain how our continuing participation in the Syrian slaughter is going to prevent Russian and Iranian influence in Syria. In his floundering to divert attention from his troubles Trump may be unintentionally doing the right thing.

#14 J-CA

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Posted 19 December 2018 - 02:52 PM

 LFC, on 19 December 2018 - 11:16 AM, said:

Why the sudden change? For the same reason that we were all afraid he'd attack somebody; LOOK! SQUIRREL!
I don't know about this, seems like "a department of defense official suggested" means that that just like, his opinion, man. Like maybe that comment shouldn't have even reasonably been included in the article?
When has withdrawl from a military engagement every distracted anybody from anything?

Isn't the more likely explanation something along the lines of every time Trump gets a briefing on Syria he ignores the content and just keeps asking who America is fighting there and what for and being dissatisfied with the answers? That and being on the opposite side of a fight with his bestest buddies too.
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#15 LFC

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Posted 20 December 2018 - 04:27 PM

 J-CA, on 19 December 2018 - 02:52 PM, said:

Isn't the more likely explanation something along the lines of every time Trump gets a briefing on Syria he ignores the content and just keeps asking who America is fighting there and what for and being dissatisfied with the answers? That and being on the opposite side of a fight with his bestest buddies too.

Ooooooh, you may be on the right track, my friend.

Mattis and others were vehemently against. Even Faux & Friends disapprove! But Trump handled the announcement in an oh so Trumpiesque manner.

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Several Republican lawmakers have made it publicly clear that they were caught off-guard and not pleased with President Donald Trump’s decision to pull U.S. troops out of Syria.

And behind closed doors, Trump — apparently influenced by a phone call with the President of Turkey, who criticized U.S. involvement in Syria — went against the advice of some of his most trusted advisers and high-ranking officials, The Washington Post reported.


According to people familiar with the issue who spoke to the Post, Trump made up his mind on Tuesday after a meeting with White House aides, Secretary of Defense James Mattis and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. Most of those in attendance reportedly strongly disagreed with Trump’s instincts.

Mattis argued to Trump that ISIS was still in operation in Syria, and a pullout of the 2,000 U.S. troops stationed in the area would fuel mayhem. The President ignored the advice.

One source who spoke to the Post said the decision was a “clear rebuke” — in the Post’s words — of Mattis, who Trump has increasingly ostracized in recent months.

Trump’s decision shocked many of the U.S.’s closest allies in the area who have joined the U.S. in its fight against the Islamic State and were apprised of the decision before it was announced, according to the Post.

Several people familiar with the situation told the Post that the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff was also blindsided by the decision and wasn’t given a heads-up until Trump shared it on Twitter.


But Trump summoned the spirits of our fallen soldiers who apparently agreed with him. That didn't go over real well with some folks.

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President Trump has been roundly criticized on Twitter for a video he posted, suggesting fallen American soldiers would agree with his decision to pull U.S. troops out of Syria. At least one Republican congressman has joined in that denunciation.

Rep. Ryan Kinzinger (R-IL) told Fox News on Wednesday he found Trump’s remarks “disturbing.”

“I’ve got to be honest with you, the whole thing — I will talk about the problem with what the President is doing — but I wear on my wrist, a buddy of mine that I flew with in Iraq back in ’08 that was actually killed in 2018 in operation Inherent Resolve,” he said, showing a bracelet on his wrist. “For the President to point to the sky and say, ‘they want this,’ inferring those who have fallen — the President can’t speak for fallen American soldiers. I’m not sure the fallen American soldiers want us to declare victory against a foe we haven’t fully defeated yet.”


But of course the one whose approval matters most gave Trump a big bear hug over Syria. Read the bulk of the piece, though, for Putin's long-winded denial of doing anything wrong or having bad intentions. It's kind of the classic "Who? Me?" you expect from him.

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The U.S. “has done the right thing,” Putin said, reaffirming the long-held Russian argument that the U.S. presence in Syria was illegitimate because it wasn’t vetted by the U.N. Security Council or approved by Syrian President Bashar Assad’s government. The pullout is also likely to strengthen Russia’s role in Syria’s future.

" 'Individual conscience' means that women only get contraceptives if their employers, their physicians, their pharmacists, their husbands and/or fathers, pastors, and possibly their mayors, Governors, State Secretaries of Health, Congressmen, Senators, and President all agree that in that particular case they're justifiable." --D.C. Sessions

"That's the problem with being implacable foes - no one has any incentive to treat you as anything more than an obstacle to be overcome."

"The 'Road to Serfdom' is really all right turns." --Progressive Whisperer

""The GOP ... where every accusation is also a confession." --Progressive Whisperer

#16 LFC

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Posted 21 December 2018 - 11:12 AM

I've updated the title to better reflect the content that's being added. Apparently Trump is looking at a big pullout from Afghanistan as well. While I'm all for us eventually getting out of there I'm afraid that Trump, being Trump, will do it stupidly, leave a horrendous mess behind, and get some of troops killed in the process.

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The Pentagon is developing plans to withdraw up to half of the 14,000 American troops serving in Afghanistan, U.S. officials said Thursday, marking a sharp change in the Trump administration’s policy aimed at forcing the Taliban to the peace table after more than 17 years of war.

One official said the troops could be out by summer, but no final decision has been made.

President Donald Trump has long pushed to pull troops out of Afghanistan, considering the war a lost cause. But earlier this year, he was persuaded by Defense Secretary Jim Mattis and others military leaders to keep troops on the ground to pressure the Taliban and battle a stubborn Islamic State insurgency. Officials said the latest White House push for withdrawal was another key factor in Mattis’ decision to resign Thursday.

The officials spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss internal deliberations.

U.S. troops stormed into Afghanistan in November 2001 in an invasion triggered by the Sept. 11 attacks.

" 'Individual conscience' means that women only get contraceptives if their employers, their physicians, their pharmacists, their husbands and/or fathers, pastors, and possibly their mayors, Governors, State Secretaries of Health, Congressmen, Senators, and President all agree that in that particular case they're justifiable." --D.C. Sessions

"That's the problem with being implacable foes - no one has any incentive to treat you as anything more than an obstacle to be overcome."

"The 'Road to Serfdom' is really all right turns." --Progressive Whisperer

""The GOP ... where every accusation is also a confession." --Progressive Whisperer

#17 LFC

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Posted 21 December 2018 - 11:15 AM

W...T...F? Now Erdogan can pull Trump's little strings? Or is he pulling them on behalf of Putin? Maybe Chief Little Hands was getting a bit too independent and Putin had to smack him on the nose with a newspaper.

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President Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw American troops from Syria was made hastily, without consulting his national security team or allies, and over strong objections from virtually everyone involved in the fight against the Islamic State, according to U.S. and Turkish officials.

Trump stunned his Cabinet, lawmakers and much of the world with the move by rejecting the advice of his top aides and agreeing to a withdrawal in a phone call with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan last week, two officials briefed on the matter said.

The Dec. 14 call, described by officials who were not authorized to discuss the decision-making process publicly and spoke on condition of anonymity, is a view into a Trump decision with profound consequences, including the resignation of widely respected Defense Secretary Jim Mattis.

The White House, State Department and Pentagon all declined to comment on the account of the withdrawal decision.

" 'Individual conscience' means that women only get contraceptives if their employers, their physicians, their pharmacists, their husbands and/or fathers, pastors, and possibly their mayors, Governors, State Secretaries of Health, Congressmen, Senators, and President all agree that in that particular case they're justifiable." --D.C. Sessions

"That's the problem with being implacable foes - no one has any incentive to treat you as anything more than an obstacle to be overcome."

"The 'Road to Serfdom' is really all right turns." --Progressive Whisperer

""The GOP ... where every accusation is also a confession." --Progressive Whisperer

#18 LFC

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Posted 21 December 2018 - 11:17 AM

The White House says it's ridiculous that Putin is happy about the Syria withdrawal after they've been calling for us to stay / get out of Syria for years. They've always viewed that as their doman. Of course Suckabee-Slanders and the truth don't even have the most casual of relationships.

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A day after Russian President Vladimir Putin said that President Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw American troops from Syria was “a correct one,” White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders dismissed as “ridiculous” and “silly” the “idea” that Putin was happy about the withdrawal.

“The idea that Putin is happy about this is ridiculous,” Sanders told reporters outside the White House Friday morning. “He’s not. This puts a greater emphasis and makes them have to actually step up and do something, and do more in the region. It puts them at a greater risk. So I think that’s just silly.”

That contradicts Putin’s own statement on the withdrawal: “If the decision to withdraw was made, then it is a correct one,” the Russian president said Thursday, per CNN.

Putin wasn’t alone. A spokesperson for Russia’s foreign ministry said the American withdrawal could precede “a milestone” in Syria.

“A milestone story which might evolve from this decision is a real prospect for a political solution,” the spokesperson, Maria Zakharova, said.

" 'Individual conscience' means that women only get contraceptives if their employers, their physicians, their pharmacists, their husbands and/or fathers, pastors, and possibly their mayors, Governors, State Secretaries of Health, Congressmen, Senators, and President all agree that in that particular case they're justifiable." --D.C. Sessions

"That's the problem with being implacable foes - no one has any incentive to treat you as anything more than an obstacle to be overcome."

"The 'Road to Serfdom' is really all right turns." --Progressive Whisperer

""The GOP ... where every accusation is also a confession." --Progressive Whisperer

#19 LFC

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Posted 21 December 2018 - 01:06 PM

You know how Trump gets when his perceived enemies or at least non-sycophants disagree with him. What's going to be his reaction when his favorite Trump Fluffers (a.k.a. Faux & Friends) loudly criticize him.

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It had to be uncomfortable morning viewing for Donald Trump again Thursday as Fox & Friends host Brian Kilmeade tore into the president for his shock announcement that he wants to withdraw all 2,000 U.S. troops from Syria—a move Kilmeade slammed as “totally irresponsible” and that would allow ISIS to re-establish its severely diminished power.

The president stunned State and Defense Department officials Wednesday by declaring the terror group “defeated” and saying plans for a “full” and “rapid” withdrawal of U.S. ground forces from Syria were underway. Even administration officials seemed confused, and hinted that an effort to slow or stop Trump’s withdrawal was happening urgently.

The hosts of Trump’s favorite morning show seemed equally taken aback by the announcement, at times angrily arguing among themselves about it and with Kilmeade even going as far as to say it was worse than President Obama’s attempts to get troops out of Iraq.

In a searing insult to Trump’s ego, Kilmeade said that no one in the world born before the year 2000 agrees with the president’s assessment that ISIS have been beaten—essentially saying Trump is a child.

“Nobody thinks ISIS is defeated. Nobody who understands, who was born after 2000, who sees what’s happened since 9/11,” the Fox & Friends host blasted. “By the way, Brett McGurk, his personal envoy, just gave a speech last week saying ISIS is there, they're still a factor, they’re far from defeated. There’s 30,000 there.”

Kilmeade went on to say that withdrawing from Syria would severely diminish the ability to prevent terrorist attacks on U.S. soil and said that Iran, Russia, and Hezbollah would be thrilled by the news.


The comments didn't stop there. This one has to be particularly biting.

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It’s been a rough week for Donald Trump and his “Friends” at Fox News.

The usually fawning hosts of the president’s favorite morning show have relentlessly attacked him for allegedly being rolled by Democrats into not shutting down the federal government over lack of funding for his Mexico border wall, and for his “totally irresponsible” decision to withdraw U.S. troops from Syria.

But things went to the next level Friday morning when White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders made an appearance on Fox & Friends, only to be told that, by leaving Syria, her boss had “refounded ISIS.”

" 'Individual conscience' means that women only get contraceptives if their employers, their physicians, their pharmacists, their husbands and/or fathers, pastors, and possibly their mayors, Governors, State Secretaries of Health, Congressmen, Senators, and President all agree that in that particular case they're justifiable." --D.C. Sessions

"That's the problem with being implacable foes - no one has any incentive to treat you as anything more than an obstacle to be overcome."

"The 'Road to Serfdom' is really all right turns." --Progressive Whisperer

""The GOP ... where every accusation is also a confession." --Progressive Whisperer

#20 LFC

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Posted 31 December 2018 - 10:41 AM

This man has no f***ing clue what he's doing.

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After meeting with Trump, Graham now says US is in a “pause situation” on Syria and that the President is reevaluating his decision.

" 'Individual conscience' means that women only get contraceptives if their employers, their physicians, their pharmacists, their husbands and/or fathers, pastors, and possibly their mayors, Governors, State Secretaries of Health, Congressmen, Senators, and President all agree that in that particular case they're justifiable." --D.C. Sessions

"That's the problem with being implacable foes - no one has any incentive to treat you as anything more than an obstacle to be overcome."

"The 'Road to Serfdom' is really all right turns." --Progressive Whisperer

""The GOP ... where every accusation is also a confession." --Progressive Whisperer





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