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Editorial

A Dilemma For the Intelligence Agencies

CIAGovernment intelligence agencies, particularly those in the United States, have a problem. Its nature was spelled out by the retired British diplomat Alastair Crooke in an article entitled “Trump's 59-Tomahawk Tweet,” appearing 8 April 2017. As the title suggests, Crooke was reacting to President Trump’s precipitous attack on a Syrian government airbase, following the chemical weapons episode of 4 April 2017 at the Syrian town of Khan Sheikhoun.

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Trump’s Redemption at Putin’s Expense?

trump-declareDonald Trump may have been told by his advisers that launching fifty-nine Tomahawk missiles, at a $15 million cost, against the small Shayrat air base in Syria was “necessary” and morally significant in retaliation for the recent chemical attack on Khan Sheikhun. A way to show Bashar al-Assad America’s outrage at the dictator’s presumed deeds… even if results from such action prove to be materially insignificant.

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The U.S. Attack on al-Shayrat Airfield

Tomahawk cruise missilesIn early morning darkness on April 7th the United States fired 59 Tomahawk cruise missiles at the Syrian al-Shayrat Airfield from two American destroyers stationed in the Eastern Mediterranean. It described the targets as Syrian fighter jets, radar, fuel facilities used for the aircraft. It asserted prior notification of Russian authorities, and offered the assurance that precautions were taken to avoid risks to Russian or Syrian military personnel.

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Trump Morphs from Deal-maker to Weal-faker

Ryan-Trump Yes; the old adage of “if it seems too good to be true, it probably is” finally is starting to resonate in the lustful ménage a trois that Donald Trump brought to American politics with his populism courting the unlikely duet of conservatism and deplorable-jingoism. What seemed as a bountiful and exotic relationship to the leadership in the Republican Party is now appearing to be no more than a one night stand, and not the beginning of a long term relationship; reality becoming sobriety to an ephemeral night of GOP political lust.

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Moral Failure at the United Nations

Rima KhalafOn 15 March 2017 the United Nations’ Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA) published a report on Israeli practices and policies toward the Palestinians. Using international law as its comparative criterion, the report came to a “definitive conclusion” that “Israel is guilty of Apartheid practices.”

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