Saturday, January 4, 2020

Religion, Nations, and Geopolitical Review: SATURDAY, JANUARY 4

by A. Joseph Lynch
& Commentary of Dr. David Pence


The assassination of Iranian Quds commander, Qassem Soleimani, was a victory for the neoconservatives in the Trump White House and for the Salafist Wahhabis in Saudi Arabia, not for America. The neocons have taken us one step closer to war. The Saudis, who espouse the same brand of extremism as ISIS, are rejoicing.

But what as America gained?

Have we taken steps to build bridges with Iran? Certainly not. To use a poker analogy, a week's worth of upping the ante seems to have left both poker players too "pot committed" to lay down their hands. The assassination of Soleimani may be an "all in" push of the American chips - and how can Iran not but push in theirs, for how can Iran not respond after such an attack on a senior Iranian official who some see as second only to the Ayatollah? What would America do if Iran assassinated Vice President Pence or General Mark A. Milley, the current Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and highest officer in the US military? Would such an attack not be considered an act of war? The assassination of Soleimani all but guarantees future bridge burning - not bridge building - between the US and Iran.

Have we strengthened our relationship with Iraq, a nation for which we've sacrificed thousands of soldiers and spent countless dollars? No. The Iraqi parliament, fearful of becoming home to an all out proxy war between Iran and the US, is poised to eject the US military from its borders. And rightly so. Iraq not only sees that Iran will always be its neighbor while the US will come and (eventually) go, Iraq, like Iran, is a majority Shia nation and will always have much closer ties to Iran as a consequence.

Has leadership of Quds force been eliminated? Esmail Qaani, Soleimani's deputy of over twenty years, has stepped into his shoes. Qaani is a veteran of the Iran-Iraq war of the 80s, and has extensive experience managing the fight against ISIS in Syria and the Wahabbis in Yemen. And this brings us the great strategic blunder behind the assassination. It once again reveals our failure to understand the religious civilizations that drive the foreign policies of "non-Western" (i.e. non-atheistic) nations.

As Dr. David Pence wrote all the way back in 2016:
We have defined our true enemy as those who hold the Salafist-jihadi ideology contending for the soul of Sunni Islam... It is responsible for more than 95 percent of terrorist acts against the US... We must work to deepen our cooperation with the Shiite states of Iraq and Iran. We must join with Russia to help broker a peace between Israel and Iran. The Shia have been the major victims of the Salafist Sunni religious persecution. This cannot be trivialized as "sectarian violence" or shrugged off as a thousand-year theological disagreement.

One of the great sources of confusion in American foreign policy has been the de facto alliance of the Saudi royal family and Israel against Iran and all other manifestations of Shia Islam in the Mideast. A large faction in Israel sees Iran as the chief enemy and ISIS almost a welcome distraction and co belligerent against the Shia governments. This is diametrically opposed to the US position. We must learn geography and religion to understand the limits and providential design of territorial nations and religious communities.
It's time for us to finally rethink our foreign policy by taking God and the religious loyalties that bind men together in nations and religious civilizations. Only then can American play its providential role in the structure of world affairs.


UNHOLY PAYMENTS: A new report reveals that the defrocked McCarrick used archdiocesan funds to give payments to senior clerics, including those charged with his investigation. St. John Paul II received $90,000 from McCarrick while Pope Benedict XVI was given almost $300,000 - roughly half of the approximately $600,000 McCarrick used in his payments.

OFF THE LIST: Hundred of accused priests have been left off the Church's list of credibly accused priests. One example includes a priest who was left off even after having been declared a sex offender registry. Once again, strong state authority provides a needed counterweight when evil, corrupt, or squishy males are ascendant within the hierarchy.

HOLY BOMBS AWAY: An unorthodox way to give an orthodox blessing: holy water from a crop duster.

SPLIT COMING SOON? The gay agenda may soon lead to denominational divorce within the Methodist community.


MOST ADMIRED MAN: Despite the  impeachment vote in the House, President Trump's polls continue to rise and now ties former President Obama for America's most admired man.

IMPEACHING LINCOLN: An op-ed from ex-Governor, Democrat, and inmate, Rod Blagojevich.

DECLINING CANDIDATES: Julian Castro has given up on his 2020 presidential aspirations while Marianne Williamson hangs on by a thread after laying off her national campaign staff. Meanwhile Biden has declared he favors the elimination of jobs in favor of fighting climate change, telling coal miners to "learn to code." Biden is echoing what Hillary Clinton called her worst mistake when she said: “We're going to put a lot of coal miners and coal companies out of business.”

BLUE STATES DOWN: 2020 census projections show traditionally blue states like California, New York, Illinois, Minnesota, Michigan, and Pennsylvania all losing a US House seat while red states like Texas, Florida, North Carolina, Arizona, and Montana pick up one to three seats. In its impact on the electoral college, a look back on the 2016 election with the new numbers reveals that President Trump would have won by five votes even without winning Pennsylvania or Michigan.


TWILIGHT OF THE ELITES: James Delingpole lists a series of events from the past decade which explain why the 2010s will go down as "...the Twilight of the Elites. From Brexit to the U.S. presidential election, from Bolsonaro in Brazil to the people’s revolutions that swept Europe, the arrogant, corrupt and complacent political establishments of the old order fought desperately to uphold their rotten hegemony only to be crushed, schooled and humiliated to the point of near-irrelevance..."

MAPPING IRAN & THE SHIA: In light of the current tensions with Iran, we recommend a reading refresher regarding the geography of Iran (four times larger than California) and Shia Islam.

EUROPEAN EMPIRE: Guy Verhofstadt, former Prime Minister of Belgium, argued against Brexit by claiming it was in Britain's interest to absorbed into a European empire able to compete with a brave new world of empires: "The world of tomorrow is not a world order based on nation states or countries. It is a world order that is based on empires. China, is not a nation, it’s a civilisation. India… is not a nation… The US is also an empire, more than a nation… And then finally the Russian federation."  Mr. Verhofstadt clearly doesn't understand the difference between a nation, a civilization, and and empire. He has betrayed his own nation to what he hopes will become a European empire with its own army. We believe history will hold Brexit simply the most recent act of British defiance against imperial dreams of European states.

POLAND-PUTIN SPAT: The Poles continue to vent anger towards Russia - this time over the origins of World War II. Truth be told, Putin is absolutely right to place blame on the 1938 Munich Conference while European Parliament wrongly blamed the 1939 non-aggression pact between the Nazis the and Soviets.


A GOOD MAN WITH A GUN: A Texas gun law - criticized by Joe Biden - allowed a good man with a gun to engage a kill a would-be mass shooter at a church in Texas. The two men who were killed were church security volunteers. The man who killed the shooter was gun instructor, Jack Wilson. All three men are heroes, saving an untold number of lives. We later learned that the indigent killer had been helped by the church in the past, but was angry he didn't receive more.

VIRGINIA INCREASES PRISON BUDGET: anticipation of jailing gun owners.

STAR WARS FEMINIST FLOP: President of Lucasfilm and head of all things Star Wars, Kathleen Kennedy, declared the Force is Female. She assembled an all-female writers room for Star Wars under Disney. Her decisions split the fan base as Star Wars was catered to feminists who praised the new films but were not interested buying movie tickets to see the films or purchase action figures of the new feminist characters (like Rose Tico). The "Skywalker Saga" has now come to an end by irreparably disgracing the previous films while being sure to include two women kissing in the end (a scene edited out in Singapore).

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