Periodic World Craziness Update # 12

The latest month’s wackiness in the world of international relations, politics, and  brinkmanship.

Red Flag Over the Atlantic:  Everyone who follows China understands that China wants and is trying to increase their influence in the world.  They are doing this by exercising their considerable economic clout in places such as Africa and South America and also by increasing defense spending an acquisitions.  This year they launched their first Aircraft Carrier and have increased defense spending by double digit percentages every year for the past dozen years or so.  That they would be interested in an Atlantic base should surprise nobody.  If they aspire to regain the Great Power status they lost hundreds of years ago they must have a global presence both economically and militarily and establishing themselves in the Azores makes perfect sense from a strategy perspective.

Rockets hit near Tel Aviv as Gaza death toll rises: I challenge anyone to read this article from Reuters and realistically make the claim that it is unbiased reporting.  Of course, why should we expect anything but biased reporting is beyond me, they are the ones who were putting doctored pictures up during the fighting in Lebanon in 2006 and then tried to act innocent when they got caught and threw one of their photographers under the bus.  More recently they did it again in 2010.

Taliban accidentally CCs everybody on its mailing list:  This is hilarious and typical of the kind of stupid mistakes amateurs make that get them caught.  I find it interesting that there are so many “journalists” on the email list of a terrorist organization.  Just saying.  

U.S. sends warships near Israel in case evacuation needed:  Has the US ever evacuated citizens from Israel in prior flare-ups of the Israeli-Arab conflict?  I am only aware of evacuations during the 1967 and 1973 wars, not during any of the minor flare-ups since then.  Hmmm? I smell politics.

Fragile truce deal hailed as a victory on both sides & Gaza Deal Seals Major Role for Egypt’s President: What I don’t understand is why Israel is making concession?  Israel launched their attacks in response to the constant stream of rocket fire into Israel from Gaza launched by Hamas.  So why then is Israel making concessions to get a cease-fire?  They should be gearing up an invasion and actually launching one and literally clearing Gaza out.  I would actually think it would makes sense for Israel to push everybody into the Sinai and then only let people back in after very careful vetting.  The Egyptians are so vocal in their support of Hamas, let them support the Palestinians and deal with the consequences of said support. Patriot Missiles to Turkey

Panetta Backs Fielding Patriots in Turkey & Russia condemns NATO’s decision to place Patriot missiles along Syrian-Turkish border:  I am not convinced that stopping Syrian incursion into Turkish airspace is all that is at stake here.  I smell a realpolitik rat and think Turkey wants the NATO troops there as a doorstop and for future leverage if the conflict widens.  I can see Turkey trying to invoke the mutual defense clause at some future point if the civil war in Syria continues.  As to Russia being opposed, when in the past 10 years has Russia not seen anything NATO does as anything but a provocation?  There is no surprise they are complaining about this too.  The Russian leadership is still feeling the pain of the collapse of their empire 20+ years ago.

U.N. votes to recognize Palestine as ‘non-member observer state’:  If there is any further proof needed that the UN General Assembly is irrelevant, this is it.  What are the practical effects of this declaration?  I can see at least two: 1. It further legitimizes the PLA and means that Abbas is the only guy to talk to; and 2. It highlights the illegitimacy of Hamas and their authority over Gaza.  The next question is where are the pro-democracy crusaders claiming that this is wrong because Hamas was democratically elected; all you will hear their are crickets.  The ultimate end-effect of this UN vote is nothing, because the UN is essentially incapable of affecting the Israeli-Arab conflict.  This is just one more publicity stunt by the PLA in hops of winning a war they lost on the battlefield in the court of world opinion.

 Egypt’s Mursi leaves palace as police battle protesters:  Maybe I am wrong about the Egyptian people.  That would be wonderful but I still wonder whether the pro-democracy types have the stomach to start a civil war to get a true democracy.  I simply do not see the Muslim Brotherhood backing down now when they are so close to gaining complete control.  Are we seeing the start of Syria 2.0 in Egypt?  Possibly, but I am not sure.

Official: Iran has evidence it captured US drone:  More gamesmanship from Iran.  At this point I don’t know what Iran thinks they are proving.  The only thing that makes sense to me is they try to stick it to the US as much as possible to increase their regional standing. They can never be anything but a regional power unless the West and China go totally down the drain.

Syria loads chemical weapons into bombs; military awaits Assad’s order: Now this could get scary or it could be a sigh.  I am not certain what the Western reaction would be to Syrian government use of chemical weapons against the rebels.  We could see a full blow R2P war or just more of the usual hot air from Western Leaders and chest beating from the phony bleeding hearts.  My guess would be hot and chest beating because I don;t think the West has the stomach for real bloodletting anymore.

‘Vulture spying for Israel’ caught in Sudan:  Yet there are people that still wonder why it is difficult to take some people seriously.  Those wild and wacky Israelis have some “Get Smart” type stuff going on with their secret agent birds.