“He that takes truth for his guide, and duty for his end, may safely trust to God’s providence to lead him aright.” – Blaise Pascal. "There is but one straight course, and that is to seek truth and pursue it steadily" – George Washington letter to Edmund Randolph — 1795. We live in a “post-truth” world. According to the dictionary, “post-truth” means, “relating to or denoting circumstances in which objective facts are less influential in shaping public opinion than appeals to emotion and personal belief.” Simply put, we now live in a culture that seems to value experience and emotion more than truth. Truth will never go away no matter how hard one might wish. Going beyond the MSM idealogical opinion/bias and their low information tabloid reality show news with a distractional superficial focus on entertainment, sensationalism, emotionalism and activist reporting – this blogs goal is to, in some small way, put a plug in the broken dam of truth and save as many as possible from the consequences—temporal and eternal. "The further a society drifts from truth, the more it will hate those who speak it." – George Orwell “There are two ways to be fooled. One is to believe what isn’t true; the other is to refuse to believe what is true.” ― Soren Kierkegaard
A lot of stranded people, to be sure. Only, Kabul seems a little more complicated than the beach.
“This could be—Afghanistan—another Dunkirk situation!” Donald Trump said Wednesday in a statement.
Certainly not Joe Biden’s “finest hour.”
Trump added in a separate state that the Sept. 11 celebration belongs to our enemies and “we already have the Taliban flag flying over our Obama-Biden built $1 Billion U.S. Embassy in Kabul.”
Former CIA Director and top US General David Petraeusalso compared Afghanistan to Dunkirk.
It’s America’s “Dunkirk moment.”
At least that’s how former top US General David Petraeus described the US operation to airlift its citizens and desperate Afghan comrades from Taliban-controlled Afghanistan, comparing it to the British retreat from Nazi-occupied Europe in 1940. Petraeus, who once commanded US forces in Afghanistan, also branded President Joe Biden’s chaotic withdrawal a disaster.
US military brass hope to eventually be able to evacuate 5,000 to 9,000 people per day, and according to Biden’s national security adviser, Jake Sullivan, the Taliban earlier promised “safe passage” to civilians who want to join the US airlift. But on Wednesday, the Pentagon and State Department issued conflicting statements about the ability of US citizens and Afghans to reach the Kabul airport.
The Pentagon said the Taliban is “guaranteeing safe passage” for US citizens. But State has said it cannot ensure safe transit to the airfield; a few hours later, Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman told reporters that, “we have seen reports that the Taliban, contrary to their public statements and their commitments to our government are blocking Afghans who wish to leave the country from reaching the airport.”
This situation in Afghanistan is a political and national nightmare.
An Afghan woman pleads with US troops to allow her inside the airport grounds to flee the Taliban.
The US Embassy in Afghanistan under the direction of Joe Biden on Wednesday sent out a second security alert to stranded Americans in Kabul: “THE UNITED STATES GOVERNMENT CANNOT ENSURE SAFE PASSAGE TO THE HAMID KARZAI INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT.”
You are on your own.
Joe Biden and Lloyd Austin have abandoned over 10,000 Americans trapped inside Kabul who are not able to leave their homes.
But not the UK. The British Government is sending Para Troops in vehicles through the center of Kabul to rescue their citizens.
Sen. Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) said in a tweet Wednesday that President Joe Biden is responsible for “the worst foreign policy debacle since Vietnam” and that the president’s defense and foreign policy team needs to resign.
“This is the worst foreign policy debacle since Vietnam, due to Joe Biden. He has lost the confidence of the American people and the ability to lead. Biden’s entire defense and foreign policy team must resign, and there must be a full congressional inquiry,” the Republican lawmaker tweeted.
“In the immediate term, we must focus on getting Americans trapped in Afghanistan out safely. That should be our top priority,” he said in another tweet.
This is the worst foreign policy debacle since Vietnam, due to Joe Biden. He has lost the confidence of the America… https://t.co/usrdyZ3lS7— Josh Hawley (@HawleyMO) 1629309300.0
The Taliban has swiftly taken over Afghanistan and the U.S. is currently scrambling to evacuate American citizens and others from the country.
Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Gen. Mark Milley saidduring a Wednesday press briefing that the swift collapse of the Afghan army and government had not been anticipated.
“There was nothing that I or anyone else saw that indicated a collapse of this army and this government in 11 days,” he said.
National security adviser Jake Sullivan said Tuesday that a “fair amount” of the defense materials supplied to Afghanistan by the U.S. have fallen into the Taliban’s hands.
President Biden indicated during an ABC News interviewthat there was not a way for the U.S. to withdraw “without chaos ensuing.” Biden remarked that “the idea that somehow, there’s a way to have gotten out without chaos ensuing, I don’t know how that happens.”
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) are requesting a classified briefing or call next week with the Gang of Eight regarding various aspects of the situation in Afghanistan.
In a letter to President Biden, the Republican congressional leaders said that they want to learn about “The number and location of U.S. persons currently located in Afghanistan, and the methodology to determine such a number and location.” They also want to be briefed on “the Administration’s plan to evacuate U.S. persons outside of Kabul who cannot travel safely to the city,” and other similar issues.
The Gang of Eight refers to the chair and ranking member of the House and Senate intelligence committees plus the four leaders of the two congressional chambers, according to Ballotpedia.
.@LeaderMcConnell and I demand that President Biden brief Congress on his plan to evacuate all American personnel i… https://t.co/9uuK2dwFJF— Kevin McCarthy (@GOPLeader) 1629328847.0
WASHINGTON, D.C.—A sorrowful President Biden expressed deep sadness over the horrific tragedy consuming Afghanistan, wishing only that there was something the President of the United States could have possibly done.
“I’ve been wracking my brain for hours, ever since I beat Rainbow Road, trying to think of something, anything, that the President could have done,” said President Biden. “It is such a helpless feeling, ya know? Sitting there, just watching ruthless terrorists murder people we promised to help. I got this message from a general saying people who helped interpret for our soldiers were going to be executed and I thought – wow, that’s so sad! Why are you bumming me out when there is nothing I can do about this?”
In a surprising move given his high character and decency, President Biden has shirked all responsibility and laid blame for the Afghanistan debacle at the feet of President Trump. Per Biden’s ‘Rules Of Blame’, since Trump had planned to withdraw from Afghanistan – and called no take-backs – any resulting carnage from the withdrawal, even if done in the most unbelievably heinous, idiotic way imaginable, would be Trump’s fault.
“I can hardly believe what I’m hearing – withdrew the military before ensuring U.S. citizens were taken care of?” said a despondent Biden. “And the system to take care of local allies crashed? Bases were abandoned so fast that lots of weapons fell into the hands of the Taliban? It’s enough to make you sick to your stomach. I’m talking triple-scoop mint chocolate kind of sick. But you know, it is what is. My hands are tied. Welp, anyone up for the Star Cup? 150cc?”
Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” – Isaiah 41:10
I remember the scene like it was yesterday. I was sitting in my first grade Sunday School class, the class where my mom taught. Each Sunday, after roll was taken, she would take the class records upstairs. She would promptly return, but to me those minutes seemed like days. I remember trying not to be frightened, thinking to myself, I’m in church. I’m safe. There is no reason to be scared. Those realities did not change my struggle, and I was still afraid.
Sadly enough, that scene played out in my young life over and over again. I would sit in school and try with all my might to not be afraid. But to no avail. My parents even gave me a quarter if I didn’t cry at school. It made no difference. My fear may have been unwarranted, and quite embarrassing, but it was all too real.
My parents taught me a verse to help me deal with my fear (and probably to help me actually live to see the second grade). The verse is Psalm 56:3, and I learned it this way: “What time I am afraid, I will trust in Thee.” My parents taught me to think about that verse whenever I was frightened. And so, countless times as a child, I found myself repeating that verse over and over and over again. I can’t say that it always made my fear subside instantaneously, but it did help to build my faith in God during difficult circumstances. Eventually, I learned to trust in the Lord regardless of my situation.
As an adult, I often find myself repeating Psalm 56:3. When my firstborn son had a difficult delivery, I said that verse repeatedly. On May 3, 1999, when the most powerful tornado of my lifetime came within one mile of our house, I prayed Psalm 56:3 a thousand times. Was I scared that I might die on May 3? I sure thought it was possible. Did the thought go through my mind that I could lose my son on February 3, 1999, just moments after he was born? More than I care to remember. And yet, even in the face of a tornado and even in the operating room with my wife and son, I found myself instinctively turning to Scripture.
Over the years, experience has been a valuable teacher. I’ve learned that tornadoes are powerful forces of nature and that I don’t have the power to sustain life. I’ve also learned that, although I may have nothing else to cling to, the Word of God is more than enough. When I have no strength within myself, His grace is sufficient.
What are your fears? Yours may be as innocent as a young child who is afraid to be away from his mom for the first time or yours may be more serious. Maybe your fear involves your child who is overseas serving in the military. Perhaps your situation includes a frightening medical diagnosis. Your fear may be in the form of a power struggle in your church that threatens your ministry. The list could go on and on.
I am not privy to the fears that exist within your heart, but I know they are there. We all deal with anxiety, hurt, fear, and trepidation. Here is my question to you: In what do you trust? Or, better said, In whom do you trust? Many people trust in government, or the military, or savings accounts, or medicine. All of these things can be for our good, but they are not adequate. As the psalmist wrote many years ago, “Some trust in chariots, some trust in horses, but we trust in the name of the Lord our God” (Psalm 20:7).
My prayer for you is that whatever you are facing today, you will trust in the Lord. Maybe you, like me, will experience the blessing of turning to Scripture to guide you through the struggles that come your way. In your day of trouble, remember the simple promise I learned as a child and the hope I cling to today: What time I am afraid, I will trust in Thee.
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What does it mean that God is sovereign? We find a helpful definition in the Westminster Confession of Faith (1647),
God hath all life, glory, goodness, blessedness, in and of himself; and is alone in and unto himself all-sufficient, not standing in need of any creatures which he hath made, nor deriving any glory from them, but only manifesting his own glory in, by, unto, and upon them. He is the alone fountain of all being, of whom, through whom, and to whom are all things; and hath most sovereign dominion over them, to do by them, for them, or upon them whatsoever himself pleaseth. In his sight all things are open and manifest, his knowledge is infinite, infallible, and independent upon the creature, so as nothing is to him contingent, or uncertain. He is most holy in all his counsels, in all his works, and in all his commands. To him is due from angels and men, and every other creature, whatsoever worship, service, or obedience he is pleased to require of them. (“Of God, and of the Holy Trinity,” WCF 2.2)
Here are 24 Bible passages about the sovereignty of God (all Scripture quotations from the English Standard Version):
God has sovereign dominion over all.
1. So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them. And God blessed them. And God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth and subdue it and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over every living thing that moves on the earth.” (Genesis 1:27-28)
2. Our God is in the heavens; he does all that he pleases. (Psalm 115:3; see also Psalm 135:6)
3. The king’s heart is a stream of water in the hand of the Lord; he turns it wherever he will. (Proverbs 21:1)
4. I form light and create darkness, I make well-being and create calamity, I am the Lord, who does all these things. (Isaiah 45:7)
God is omniscient (all-knowing), omnipotent (all-powerful), and omnipresent (present everywhere).
5. Great is our Lord, and abundant in power; his understanding is beyond measure. (Psalm 147:5)
6. Have you not known? Have you not heard? The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He does not faint or grow weary; his understanding is unsearchable. He gives power to the faint, and to him who has no might he increases strength. (Isaiah 40:28-29)
7. “Behold, I am the Lord, the God of all flesh. Is anything too hard for me?” (Jeremiah 32:27)
8. But Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” (Matthew 19:26)
Nothing happens unless God permits it.
9. And the Lord said to Satan, “Behold, all that he has is in your hand. Only against him do not stretch out your hand.” So Satan went out from the presence of the Lord. (Job 1:12; see also Job 2:4-6)
10. The lot is cast into the lap, but its every decision is from the Lord. (Proverbs 16:33)
God makes use of our plans to fulfill his purposes.
11. As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good, to bring it about that many people should be kept alive, as they are today. (Genesis 50:20)
12. The Lord has made everything for its purpose, even the wicked for the day of trouble. (Proverbs 16:4)
13. The heart of man plans his way, but the Lord establishes his steps. (Proverbs 16:9)
14. And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose. (Romans 8:28)
God acts according to his will, not according to human opinions of fairness.
15. All the inhabitants of the earth are accounted as nothing, and he does according to his will among the host of heaven and among the inhabitants of the earth; and none can stay his hand or say to him, “What have you done?” (Daniel 4:35)
16. In him we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to the purpose of him who works all things according to the counsel of his will. (Ephesians 1:11)
17. So then he has mercy on whomever he wills, and he hardens whomever he wills. (Romans 9:18)
18. Has the potter no right over the clay, to make out of the same lump one vessel for honorable use and another for dishonorable use? (Romans 9:21)
God’s purposes will stand.
19. “I know that you can do all things, and that no purpose of yours can be thwarted. (Job 42:2)
20. Many are the plans in the mind of a man, but it is the purpose of the Lord that will stand. (Proverbs 19:21)
21. The Lord of hosts has sworn: “As I have planned, so shall it be, and as I have purposed, so shall it stand.” (Isaiah 14:24)
God alone is to be worshipped, served, and obeyed.
22. Then Jesus said to him, “Be gone, Satan! For it is written, “‘You shall worship the Lord your God and him only shall you serve.’” (Matthew 4:10)
23. I charge you in the presence of God, who gives life to all things, and of Christ Jesus, who in his testimony before Pontius Pilate made the good confession, to keep the commandment unstained and free from reproach until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ, which he will display at the proper time—he who is the blessed and only Sovereign, the King of kings and Lord of lords, who alone has immortality, who dwells in unapproachable light, whom no one has ever seen or can see. To him be honor and eternal dominion. Amen. (1 Timothy 6:13-16)
24. And I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and in the sea, and all that is in them, saying, “To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be blessing and honor and glory and might forever and ever!” (Rev. 5:13)
Temptation Is Like a Knife Matthew 4:1–11; Luke 4:1–13; 1 Corinthians 10:13; James 1:13–14
Temptation is like a knife that may either cut the meat or the throat of a man; it may be his food or his poison, his exercise or his destruction.
Ritzema, E., & Vince, E. (Eds.). (2013). 300 Quotations for Preachers from the Puritans. Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press.
Use All Temporal Goods in God’s Service Luke 12:13–21; 16:10–13; 1 Timothy 6:17–19; 1 Peter 4:10
If rejoicing in riches can be made in any way endurable, it is when men spend and use them in the service of God; there is no other way of making them profitable: the same principle applies to all other temporal goods, titles, rank, and office.
JOHN OF THE CROSS
Ritzema, E. (2013). 300 Quotations for Preachers from the Reformation. Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press.
8 But as for me, I am like a green olive tree in the house of God;I trust in the lovingkindness of God forever and ever.9 I will give You thanks forever, because You have done it,And I will wait on Your name, for it is good, in the presence of Your godly ones. Psalms 52:8-9 (NASB)
I am no different than you. What I mean is that I have dreams of having something better in the future or someday becoming a professional photographer, et cetera. I have always wanted that….
However, it seems, the more I try, the harder I work at it, the less and less likely it will ever happen. There was a small hope that I could retire soon and have some money coming in from my art/photography that would supplement my retirement. That appears to be nothing more than a pipe dream. Should I get angry? Should I blame myself for being such a lousy photographer? Should I ask God why He isn’t making this happen? If He really loved me shouldn’t He do this for me? Isn’t that sort of theology akin to the Prosperity Gospel which is no gospel at all? You see, that mindset is all wrong. I should be rejoicing that I am forgiven and have eternity with my Lord awaiting. His will for me is always right. View article →
How is it that He eats and drinks with tax collectors and sinners? – Mark 2:16b
Scripture reading: Mark 2:13-22
Tax collectors were a hated and despised group of people. They served the Romans to collect taxes from the Jews. Many were cheaters and often very belligerent. It is said that if a Jew saw a tax collector, he would spit on the ground and turn his head. They were expelled from the synagogue and were a cause of disgrace to their family.
As Jesus walks along the shore of Galilee, He sees Levi, the tax collector, that hated individual sitting in his booth. Jesus turns to him in order to make him one of His disciples calling, “Follow Me!” Immediately Levi leaves everything behind, gets up and follows Jesus. There is no man happier than Levi. He throws a feast in honor of Jesus in his own home. Many of his associates, tax collectors and sinners, join the feast with Jesus in Levi’s home. Levi wanted them to know, trust and love this wonderful Saviour and Lord Who found him. He is the Physician Who forgives and heals.
The scribes and Pharisees, the hair-splitting legalists, find Jesus’ activity questionable. “How is it that He eats and drinks with tax collectors and sinners?” Jesus eats with sinners because He came to forgive them their sins.
Today, in the church, Jesus continues to fellowship with forgiven sinners. What a privilege to eat and drink at His table. Who gets to sit around your dinner table so that you can share the love of our wonderful Saviour Who found you to feast with Him?
Suggestions for prayer
Thank God for His hospitality toward us in Christ, forgiving us and receiving us in His house. Pray that Jesus’ love for sinners may change us to love those we naturally despise and that He may open our hearts to them and eat with them.
Rev. Tony Zekveld currently serves as missionary-pastor in the Hope Congregation in East Brampton, Ontario, sent by Covenant Christian Church (URCNA) of Wyoming, Ontario. Rev. Zekveld and his wife, Arley-Ann, have five children and, so far, eight grandchildren. This daily devotional is also available in a print edition you can buy at Nearer to God Devotional.
But the word of the Lord endureth for ever. And this is the word which by the gospel is preached unto you. (1 Peter 1:25)
All human teaching and, indeed, all human beings shall pass away as the grass of the meadow; but we are here assured that the Word of the Lord is of a very different character, for it shall endure forever.
We have here a divine gospel; for what word can endure forever but that which is spoken by the eternal God?
We have here an ever-living gospel, as full of vitality as when it first came from the lips of God; as strong to convince and convert, to regenerate and console, to sustain and sanctify as ever it was in its first days of wonder-working.
We have an unchanging gospel which is not today green grass and tomorrow dry hay but always the abiding truth of the immutable Jehovah. Opinions alter, but truth certified by God can no more change than the God who uttered it.
Here, then, we have a gospel to rejoice in, a word of the Lord upon which we may lean all our weight. “For ever” includes life, death, judgment, and eternity. Glory be to God in Christ Jesus for everlasting consolation. Feed on the word today and all the days of thy life.
Many people today are absolutely sure that there are no absolutes. What should be recognized as a self-refuting statement is now embraced as the central mantra of postmodern culture. The only fixed truth it believes in is that all truth is relative.READ MORE
I decided this summer to read The Hiding Place (by Corrie Ten Boom) again. I’d read this book a couple of times before but this time in reading it I found precious gems of Truth that I had never seen before.
For those of you who are unfamiliar with The Hiding Place, it is the story of Corrie Ten Boom and her family who were taken captive during World War II in Holland for sheltering Jews.
As I perused this book again new truths came to light that caught me by surprise and took my breath away.
. . . As the rest of the world grew stranger, one thing became increasingly clear. And that was the reason the two of us (Corrie and Betsie, her sister) were here. As for us, from morning until lights-out, whenever we were not in ranks for roll call, our Bible was the center of an ever-widening circle of help and hope. Like waifs clustered around a blazing fire, we gathered about it, holding out our hearts to its warmth and light. The blacker the night around us grew, the brighter and truer and more beautiful burned the word of God.
“Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? . . . Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us.” Romans 8:35
I would look about us as Betsie read, watching the light leap from face to face. More than conquerors . . . It was not a wish. It was a fact. We knew it, we experienced it minute by minute – poor, hated, hungry. We are more than conquerors. Not “we shall be.” We are! Life in Ravensbruck took place on two separate levels, mutually impossible. One, the observable, external life, grew every day more horrible. The other, the life we lived with God, grew daily better, truth upon truth, glory upon glory.
Did you catch it? . . . We ARE more than conquerors. Not “we shall be.” We ARE!
The LORD rescues the godly; He is their fortress in times of trouble. The LORD helps them, rescuing them from the wicked. He saves them, and they find shelter in Him. Psalm 37.39-40
As I look at these verses through Corrie’s lens I realize that my understanding has been incredibly distorted due to my overwhelming need for comfort.
Corrie and Betsie’s life in the prison camp was filled with unspeakable horror. And there is something deep within me that cries, “Why God, Why? Why do you allow such godly people to suffer and die in such revolting conditions? They followed you. They gave you everything and yet look how You rewarded them!”
And it’s almost as if I can hear Corrie saying . . . “God was with me every step of the way. He WAS my fortress in times of tribulation. He WAS saving me and I DID find shelter in Him.”
I’m ashamed at how easily I slide into a faith that is only concerned about my comfort and not God’s ways.
LORD, rescue and save me from myself! From my foolish desires, from my own need for comfort. Teach me to follow you with my WHOLE heart. Your love is never conditional – may my love for You never be conditional either.
Afflictions: Christ’s Mallet and Chisel Colossians 1:12
Afflictions cannot sanctify us, except as they are used by Christ as his mallet and his chisel. Our joys and our efforts cannot make us ready for heaven apart from the hand of Jesus who fashions our hearts aright, and prepares us to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light.
Ritzema, E. (Ed.). (2012). 300 Quotations for Preachers. Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press.
The Life of the Just Proverbs 2:8; Isaiah 26:7; 1 Peter 4:11
To act well, and suffer evil, to praise God in all things, and never to draw vanity from his good gifts—such is the life of the just.
THOMAS À KEMPIS*
Ritzema, E., & Brant, R. (Eds.). (2013). 300 quotations for preachers from the Medieval church. Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press.
A retired General Officer’s assessment of Biden’s abject failure in Afghanistan.
It’s done. The internal and external national security risks to your once-proud country have just skyrocketed. It is difficult to describe the stunningly negative position the United States finds itself in following the cataclysmic fall of Afghanistan to the Taliban. President Joe Biden’s ill-fated and hapless decision to summarily short-notice withdraw all remaining U.S. troops from Afghanistan will forever be known as the day America’s position in the world order cascaded behind that of China, and for that matter Russia and the European Union as well.
From the date of the “blink of the eye” fall of Afghanistan, America will be known as an unreliable, bankrupt ex-world power with only marginal meaning to the rest of the world. Our traditional friends are now positioned to either be “picked off” by China or to accept unholy alliances with China to survive. Traditional friends and allies will no longer look to America for leadership or as an example of the strength offered by free, democratic, capitalistic, and Judeo-Christian ideals.
The age of socialism, communism, and dictatorial theocracy is now shadowing the entire globe. Freedom’s beacon has turned off for the former free world and all who aspire for Liberty. All this at the feeble hands of an incompetent and senile old man guided by unelected, gutless, socialist anti-American ideologues who control his every move.
Who am I to draw such conclusions or make such claims? Perhaps a little background. I spent my entire adult life in service to America. I proudly wore the uniform of the United States Army for 39 years and was privileged to lead troops from platoon to the four-star combatant command level. I spent 14 years deployed overseas in Europe, the Middle East, and Asia. And I was significantly involved in the early years of Afghanistan.
As NATO’s Land Component Commander from 2004 to 2005, I was responsible to NATO for manning its International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) headquarters in Kabul, Afghanistan. I trained officers and enlisted personnel from all our NATO countries to perform their assigned duties in Kabul. As such, I visited Afghanistan periodically from my NATO headquarters in Heidelberg, Germany, and spent time traveling throughout the breadth and depth of that ancient land visiting troops and checking on NATO operations. Also, from 2002 to 2005, I trained and deployed to Afghanistan many European-based U.S. Army Soldiers under my dual hat job in Europe as Commander of the United States Army, Europe.
For sure, successes were achieved in Afghanistan. In late 2001, the Taliban was routed from its perch of leadership in Kabul, having sanctioned al-Qaida’s terrorist training camps. We defeated al-Qaida in Afghanistan and their survivors were either captured and sent to Guantanamo or fled the country. There has been no significant al-Qaida attack on America’s homeland for 20 years. Eventually, America killed Osama bin Laden in his hiding place in Pakistan. I commend both Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama for their leadership and decision-making in accomplishing these victories — victories for freedom. All real Americans are grateful.
However, both presidents were culpable in turning the mission from defeating al-Qaida and preventing the reestablishment of their terrorist training camps into an unattainable mission of rebuilding Afghanistan to look like the West — to look like America. President Bush pressed NATO to expand NATO’s ISAF mission. Instead of counterterrorism, its stated tasks were to stabilize and rebuild Afghanistan by training the Afghan military, police, and judiciary; supporting the government in counter-narcotics efforts; and developing an economic market infrastructure.
These are all code words for nation building, and soon nation building was the mission for America and NATO. Meanwhile, the United States decided to singularly destroy the Taliban in combat across its eastern and southern Afghan strongholds. So Vietnam-style civil war was at hand, with America in the middle of counterinsurgency fighting to achieve it. The Viet Cong became the Taliban and we were going to kill them all with 110,000 deployed combat forces.
Only President Donald Trump had the vision to attempt to return our badly misguided efforts in Afghanistan to their original purpose — defeat al-Qaida in Afghanistan and retain a counterterrorist capability to destroy any future attempts to reestablish training camps and cells that could threaten our homeland. He successfully drew down U.S. troop strength to around 2,500 uniformed personnel and focused them largely on the counterterrorism mission. He allowed additional capable civilian cadre to fill some of the gaps in assisting the Afghan government and Afghan National Army (ANA) in their ongoing fight against the Taliban.
And, crucially, President Trump kept U.S. airpower over the battlefield in support of ANA operations and in readiness for counterterrorism operations. With this, the Afghan government and ANA functioned — not perfectly, by any means, but sufficiently — to ward off Taliban threats of takeover and move the country forward. A measure of freedom, especially for Afghan women, was achieved, and America’s place in the world order remained preeminent.
While the Taliban remained capable in Afghanistan, the ANA, with U.S. airpower, kept it scattered and on its heels. There is every reason to believe that this appropriately low-cost military effort by America and our allies would have succeeded indefinitely. And the last U.S. troops to perish in combat in Afghanistan were in February 2020 — 18 months ago. The ANA was doing all the fighting on the ground. Thank you, President Trump. You did a great job for us in Afghanistan by returning our effort to one of counterterrorism and away from impossible nation building.
With the ascent of our hollowed-out President Biden, however, anything Trump had accomplished for America was reversed. His incredibly ill-advised method of governance carried over to Afghanistan, where Biden, against the advice of his senior military leadership, ordered a short-notice full withdrawal of all U.S. military personnel along with our air power.
This resulted in the immediate disorderly flight of all U.S. contractor personnel with similar reaction by our NATO partners. Finally, with no support of any sort from anyone, especially air support, the ANA fled the field and returned to villages, thus ceding all Afghan territory to the Taliban. There was no fight. And now it’s over — uncontested by the vaporized ANA. Afghanistan is back in the hands of the Taliban, and we have lost our counterterrorism capability in the region.
Dear America, it was my deepest and most heartfelt honor to serve our once-great country for 39 years in peace and war. America: the land of Liberty, justice, and democracy. An example for the world over. A Constitution of epic proportions embraced by us all for over 200 years.
And now, it too is over…
Unless… Unless those who still cherish our homeland take a very, very firm stand. Afghanistan must be your final and unshakable line in the sand. It cannot be moved again. Take a final stand and do it at every ballot box opportunity until all socialist ideologues in America (unfortunately, it appears that socialists include a significant majority of the Democrat Party) are out of power and we have forever rid the land of their evil intent. Draw an unmoving line and stand on it. Do not waver.
Return our schools to the basics of reading, writing, and arithmetic. Restore our universities to places of higher education, not indoctrination. Rediscover our Judeo-Christian culture. Embrace the return of the institution of marriage and the American family along with the resurrection of traditional family values for our children. Strengthen our national sovereignty by enforcing legal immigration and preventing the now almost accepted daily flood of illegal immigrants. Embolden our Supreme Court to do its job and rule against all the unconstitutional attacks on our cherished freedom of speech, especially censorship by so-called private enterprise social media companies. Bring American jobs home from overseas. End irresponsible and grossly inflationary deficit spending.
And, yes, if we do these things we can make America great again. Draw an unmovable line. Defend it with every ounce of strength you can muster. Then and only then may we survive the cataclysmic fall of Afghanistan with all its devastating implications. May God Bless America as we find out if the line is drawn, if Patriots occupy it, and if it holds.
At the seven-month mark of his presidency, Joe Biden’s incompetence is beginning to be noticed.
Opinion polls are lagging indicators, often significantly so. In this respect, they’re obsolete even before they’re published. And yet.
In addition, some pollsters — like those at CBS News and The New York Times — are hopelessly biased in the way they sample their groups and phrase their questions to shape outcomes favorable to Democrats. We call this Pollaganda, and it’s a subtle but powerful tool with which the mainstream press can guide a herd of dull and incurious voters, lemming-like, to the leftist candidate or policy of their choice.
Still other pollsters, though — like those of ABC News and The Washington Post — are filthy, lying, cheating, rotten, and repugnant, and empirically so. How else to explain their infamous poll from just two weeks prior to the 2020 presidential election — a poll that showed Donald Trump trailing Joe Biden by a ridiculous 17 points in Wisconsin, a state Trump ultimately lost by a relative handful of votes in corrupt Milwaukee?
All this aside, however, recent polls seem to be calling out for attention, because they indicate a significant shift rather than a subtle one — a shift away from the incompetent boob living at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.
Take the weekly Reuters/Ipsos poll: “President Joe Biden’s approval rating dropped by 7 percentage points and hit its lowest level so far,” Reuters reports, “as the U.S.-backed Afghan government collapsed over the weekend in an upheaval that sent thousands of civilians and Afghan military allies fleeing for their safety.”
According to Reuters/Ipsos, just 46% of Americans now approve of the job Biden is doing, down from last week’s 53%.
We’re not sure whether to take solace in that sharp drop, or lament the fact that more than half of those surveyed just last week thought this guy — this architect of ruin, this global embarrassment — was doing a decent job. Which just goes to show: No one ever went broke betting on the gullibility of the American electorate.
Want more proof? About 44% of respondents said they thought Biden has done a “good job” in Afghanistan.
Reuters blames that unfolding disaster for the precipitous decline. “Biden’s popularity dropped as the Taliban entered the capital, Kabul,” it writes, “wiping away two decades of U.S. military presence that cost nearly 1 trillion taxpayer dollars and thousands of American lives.”
Maybe, but maybe not. As we said, polls are lagging indicators, and these respondents were interviewed Monday. Had Biden’s foreign policy ineptitude fully settled in by then? Desperate Afghans hadn’t begun dropping from American C-17s yet, nor had the Taliban started shooting uncovered women in the streets. And with as many as 15,000 Americans still in Afghanistan, and the Taliban controlling the avenues to the airports, and the Biden administration having no plan for getting them out, the worst may well be yet to come.
On the other hand, a trove of other Biden-caused disasters had already begun to settle in by the time Ipsos began asking its questions: the border crisis, the unchecked inflation, and the spending calamity among them.
Finally, a more reliable poll, one taken daily, shows a similar trend in Biden’s flagging support. The Rasmussen Reports Daily Presidential Tracking Poll for Wednesday shows that 46% of likely voters approve of Biden’s job performance, while 54% disapprove. More ominous numbers are the 26% who strongly approve of Biden’s performance against 45% who strongly disapprove. That’s a deficit of 19. And it’s those folks — the ones who feel strongly about their position — who tend to show up for midterm elections.
On the “bright” side, we’re already seven full months into this failed presidency. Only 41 more to endure.
As Biden sinks in the polls, his media allies seek to spin away the deserved criticism.
Following Joe Biden’s directive to remove all U.S. troops from Afghanistan in time for the 20th anniversary of 9/11, and the subsequent disaster that has resulted with the Taliban rapidly taking over the entire country, it has been interesting — but predictable — to see how the mainstream media has responded.
While the MSM hasn’t shied away from reporting on the human tragedy unfolding in Kabul, it has been rather tepid in its criticism of Biden. Sadness and disappointment undergirds the media’s reporting as Biden’s feckless leadership has been laid bare for the whole world to see. It’s apparent that the MSN doesn’t want to criticize Biden, yet there’s no other way to report on the fact that this is Biden’s mess. “The buck stops” with him, as Biden declared in his Monday speech — even as he then quickly sought to pass it off onto Donald Trump.
Which brings up the obvious point: Imagine the MSM coverage of this Afghanistan debacle if it were Trump at the helm and not Biden. Would media pundits like MSNBC’s Brian Williams have ridiculously offered praise of Trump as he did of Biden, laughably arguing that he “didn’t run” from the responsibility but instead “owned it”? Every single action and decision that Trump took and made was hyperbolically lambasted and criticized by the Leftmedia, as if even Trump’s breathing was poisoning the air.
If Trump were still in office, there would be calls for investigations, questions regarding his loyalty to the U.S., and impeachment for ensuring the deaths of Americans and allies at the hands of terrorists. Are these calls being raised against Biden? The answer is deafening silence.
In fact, MSNBC’s Nicole Wallace, in reference to Biden’s Afghanistan speech, asserted that “95% of the American people will agree with everything he just said.” She then continued the spin: “For an American president to finally be completely aligned with such an overwhelming majority of what the American people think about Afghanistan is probably a tremendous relief to the American people.” Really, 95%? Where in the world did she come up with that figure?
Obviously, Wallace was merely projecting her own wishful thinking while seeking to run damage control for Biden. Actually, polling data of Americans’ opinion of Biden would come as a total shock to Wallace if she actually believed the nonsense she was peddling. His favorability rating tanked 7% in just one week, with a clear majority now expressing dissatisfaction with his leadership.
Furthermore, imagine if Trump had sought to blame his decision on his predecessor. The press would have had a field day blasting Trump for blame-shifting, yet where is the criticism of Biden for attempting to pin the blame on Trump?
We noted numerous times that throughout Trump’s term in office, the MSM’s coverage of him was documented to be 90% negative — a tidal wave of negativity not experienced by any prior president in the modern era. In similar fashion, Biden, who deserves much more negative coverage, has enjoyed mostly positive and neutral coverage. In fact, over his first 100 days, no president in the modern era received less negative coverage, at only 19% negative, than did Biden.
Thus, when Biden’s actions have become so egregious that the negative news cannot be avoided, it’s telling that the MSM still goes out of its way to blunt any serious criticism.
The challenges are myriad, especially in a country that still resembles the seventh century.
Now that we’ve seen how this Afghanistan movie ends, the question becomes whether we were ever really prepared for the plot twists we endured.
In the fevered wake of 9/11, President George W. Bush built a coalition to fight the overall War on Terror, and with its assistance we found ridding Afghanistan of the initial Taliban government was relatively easy. Yet the second act of this play turned out to be pivotal: the one where we tried to help establish a functioning Western-style government in a nation where the Taliban had taken power by overthrowing a Soviet-backed strongman.
Indeed, in the beginning there were triumphs. After being a provisional leader in a “transitional government” for two years, the nation elected Hamid Karzai as its first democratic leader in 2004 and a decade later saw a peaceful transfer of power to now-deposed President Ashraf Ghani in 2014. Unfortunately, the Heritage Foundation’s James Jay Carafano notes that the Taliban never really went away — it simply set up shop in the rugged border region of neighboring Pakistan and waited, taking advantage of our system where policies are dictated by the winner of national elections.
Having outlasted several colonial empires over the centuries, the Afghan insurgents realized it was only a matter of time before Americans lost interest in the War on Terror, which was the original reason we cared about the Afghans in the first place. As the Wall Street Journal’s Gerald Seib points out: “The war was started by a Republican president, the peak in troop strength reached under a Democratic president, the agreement to leave struck by another Republican president, that departure decision carried out by another Democratic president. Every one of those presidents learned what history should have taught about Afghanistan, which is that the local fighter always knows he will outlast the foreign occupier.”
While our chaotic departure brings up bad memories of abandoning Saigon nearly 50 years ago, the speed at which the pro-Ghani Afghan army folded was shocking to many observers who thought they could hold out for several more months. Yet the Afghans have existed in a realm where loyalty to family blood and a tribe is more powerful than loyalty to a nation, and the Taliban has been relatively successful at keeping factions together. It would be a bit like if the Crips and Bloods formed an alliance in 1980s South LA against a common threat.
The common threat is now practically gone — aside from the poor souls who, thanks to our lack of foresight, will be hunted down like dogs for the simple crime of being loyal to the erstwhile and elected Afghan government and those protecting it. The Taliban is not going to appease all of the tribes and factions, at least not without convincing them there is a common enemy — or a larger goal. Does “Death to America” ring a bell?
All this brings up a larger moral question: While we in America believe that people exist with a God-given right to life and Liberty, how do you pair up that square peg with the round hole of a people whose loyalty to tribe and religion reminds one of the state of play in the seventh century? One theory is that allowing Islam to be Afghanistan’s state religion (as enshrined in its constitution) doomed the project, since Islam and its demand for fealty and dependence on strict, religious-based law simply isn’t compatible with a Western vision of Liberty. For example, no matter how many Democrats offer bromides about how the “world is watching” how the Taliban will handle women’s rights, women will never have rights under the Islamists now in charge.
Perhaps the best we can hope for is to simply be the shining city on the hill for the world. Unfortunately, not everyone becomes aware that there is a place where they can be free to live as they choose and can make as much of a name for themselves as their hard work and talents will allow. We can still spread that message around the globe through diplomacy and commerce, but at a time when our own light needs attention, it may be the right moment to pause building nations for others and rebuild the one that we’ve all but squandered.
The question is whether the science behind this pronouncement is sound.
It’s not news to our readers that the CDC has greatly undermined its own credibility, creating a colossal trust deficit. Throughout the coronavirus pandemic, the CDC has been unclear, contradictory, and sometimes misleading. Well, here we go again.
The CDC recently decided that “all eligible persons should be offered COVID-19 vaccine, even those with previous SARS-CoV-2 infection.” This has long been a point of contention for anyone paying attention.
Arguably, the whole point of vaccination is to create the same antibodies that your own system would produce after having contracted the virus. And as the Cato Institute’s Todd Zywicki recently wrote, there’s evidence suggesting that natural immunities are as good or better than at least the Johnson & Johnson vaccine. And the goal of vaccination may be 100% inoculation, but that’s never reality.
Nevertheless, government officials and media talkingheads routinely ignore the immunity conferred by having contracted the virus. Some 37.1 million Americans have had recorded cases. No doubt some number of those have also been vaccinated, either before or after infection. Do the previously infected but unvaccinated need to be vaccinated? The CDC says yes, even though the evidence is unclear.
To justify its pronouncement, the CDC pointed to a Kentucky study of residents who were vaccinated versus those who had contracted COVID at some point. The problem with that study, argues Power Line’s John Hinderaker, is actually profound:
CDC has misrepresented the significance of that study. The relevant question is whether people who have had covid are any more likely to be re-infected than people who have not had covid, but who have been vaccinated. But the Kentucky study did not address that question at all. Rather, it looked only at those who had already contracted covid, and examined whether a subsequent vaccination would reduce their small risk of re-infection even further.
Hinderaker’s Washington neurosurgeon pal digs in even further at the above link. But suffice it to say that science isn’t the guiding principle when the CDC pulls such stunts. Neither is science the standard used by Leftmedia propagandists, who dutifully repeat the CDC’s deceptive press release about its supposed findings.
Why do they repeat it? Because President Joe Biden, who spent 2020 telling people not to trust any vaccine that Donald Trump played a part in developing, now wants every American vaccinated.
Inquiring minds want to know: What’s Dr. Anthony Fauci’s position on herd immunity this week? He didn’t specify, but he did make this astounding declaration: “Put aside all of these issues of concern about liberties and personal liberties and realize we have a common enemy and that common enemy is the virus.”
It’s no wonder so many Americans have trust issues when it comes to government.
Joe Biden has already set an appalling new standard for presidential incompetence.
Normally, when one’s political opposition does a face-plant, a bit of schadenfreude sets in — which is to say, one takes malicious pleasure from the other’s misfortune.
Not so with Joe Biden’s presidency, though. No pleasure can be taken — at least not by any Patriot — from the many grave and consequential failures that have marked the first seven months of his administration. Just when we think we’ve seen the worst of it — whether it’s the border crisis, the unchecked inflation, the foreign policy failures, or the spending calamity — Joe Biden seems to shuffle forward and say, Hold my beer.
The latest example was Biden’s hasty and ill-conceived withdrawal from Afghanistan and the stunning collapse of its government and its military to the Taliban. What an unmitigated disaster.
A month ago, the Biden-Harris regime celebrated six months in the White House by posting a note to Instagram. It didn’t go as planned. At that time, Cuba was in the news, and the plight of that awful communist country reminded us just how perilous is our perch atop the community of nations.
“In six months, this Administration has fueled record-breaking job growth, vaccinated over 160 million people — and captured a lot of photos along the way,” the administration chirped.
Then the comments came in. “In six months this administration has destroyed America,” wrote one critic. Said another: “This administration has destroyed our energy independence, dramatically increased the cost of living for hard working Americans, overseen historic inflation growth, saddled generations of our children with massive China owned debt, wasted our tax dollars in the invasion of illegal aliens — Biden Harris are total screw ups.”
Two men are primarily to blame for Biden’s presidency: Barack Obama and James Clyburn — Obama because he pulled Biden from the ash heap of presidential also-rans and made him his veep for eight years, and Clyburn because he singlehandedly resurrected Biden’s 2020 presidential campaign by endorsing this dead man walking in a do-or-die South Carolina primary.
Think of what this says about Obama — the man whose first test of judgment and character was to place Biden one heartbeat away from the presidency.
“Don’t underestimate Joe’s ability to f— things up,” Obama warned us last August. And, as columnist Raheem Kassam notes, “He went further, asserting: ‘And you know who really doesn’t have it? Joe Biden.’”
It’s true. Biden’s first seven months have been some of our nation’s worst. Too bad nobody listened to his former employer — a guy who knows a thing or two about incompetent administrations.
Kassam continues, hitting upon the awful realization that the Americans who died in Afghanistan now appear to have done so in vain:
That’s the most difficult thing to reckon with. And it isn’t just the deaths of allied servicemen and women. It’s everyone who suffered needlessly. Millions upon millions of people. A horror that never needed to go down this way, and topped off by an historic, tail-between-legs moment that will undermine America on the international stage for decades to come. Maybe that’s a good thing. Maybe that’s precisely the kind of humble pie the political class in the U.S. needs. But that presupposes they even feel shame.
Joe Biden owns this, and he owns a lot more. And the frustration is starting to bubble over in Congress. “Inflation is raging, tweeted Florida Senator and former Governor Rick Scott. “The debt ceiling expired and U.S. debt is headed to $45 TRILLION. Kabul is falling to the Taliban and encounters in the #BidenBorderCrisis just hit a 20 YEAR HIGH. Democrats control the House, Senate and White House. What in the world is Joe Biden doing?”
Scott then addressed the issue of Biden’s cognitive ability — an issue that Texas Congressman and former White House physician Ronny Jackson has also been talking about. “After the disastrous events in Afghanistan,” said Scott, “we must confront a serious question: Is Joe Biden capable of discharging the duties of his office or has time come to exercise the provisions of the 25th Amendment?”
Is the 25th Amendment the correct course of action? Or is it impeachment, especially when we consider Biden’s abject and overt failure to protect our southern border? Unfortunately, the answer right now is neither. Republicans have neither the votes nor the power. And Democrats, at least on the outside, seem content to let Biden chug along from one disaster to the next.
Happy seven-month anniversary, America. Only 41 more to go.
Forty-two million people currently on food stamps isn’t enough — Biden wants more.
Why work for food when the government will just give it to you? The Biden administration has announced its plan to increase the amount of taxpayer money redistributed for food stamps. The program officially known as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) currently has 42 million recipients, and they’ll be getting a payout boost of nearly 30%. We know Joe Biden’s caused a major inflation problem, but this is ridiculous.
One of government’s oldest welfare programs, SNAP will increase its monthly monetary distribution to food stamps from the pre-pandemic level of $121 per person up to $157 per person. This is not a temporary shift, but in fact a permanent one. The Biden administration is pushing not only to ensure that those already on food stamps continue to stay on them, but it’s also encouraging even more folks to hop on the government dole.
This serves as yet another underhanded effort by Biden to force a $15 minimum wage by continuing to ensure that would-be workers are priced out of the available job market. What incentive does an individual have to get a job that will effectively pay less than what the government will give them?
Donald Trump worked hard to get the economy roaring, which helped enable people to get off government welfare programs like SNAP. After Barack Obama increased the number of individuals on SNAP to a peak of 47 million, Trump’s economy reduced the total number down to 36 million. This in turn cut government’s cost down to just over $60 billion per year prior to COVID. Of course, getting people off welfare and less dependent on the government is exactly the opposite of what Biden and the Democrats want, because the party thrives on creating government dependency.
The bigger problem facing the country is the burgeoning inflation balloon, and it appears that rather than seek to tackle that looming problem, the Biden administration has elected to blow even more air into it. The calculation must be that once the balloon pops, even more people will be forced to seek help from the government, giving Democrats ever more power.
Never mind the fact that Democrat-run urban poverty plantations like Baltimore and Chicago are some of the most crime-ridden societal disasters in the country. As long as statists in power are doling out welfare checks to the unemployed, they’re content, because they get to play savior — albeit with money taken from hardworking Americans.
Hope Solo called out ex-teammate Megan Rapinoe for “almost bullying” the team into kneeling.
It’s no secret that U.S. Women’s National Team (USWNT) soccer player Megan Rapinoe has been the ringleader when it comes to kneeling during the national anthem. Her activism dates back to September 4, 2016, when she knelt in solidarity with Colin Kaepernick. The loathsome ex-quarterback is infamous for taking a knee for the Marxist Black Lives Matter cause in response to Michael Brown’s death.
In 2016, even U.S. Soccer agreed with the now controversial viewpoint that “representing your country is a privilege and honor.” The organization at the time decreed: “As part of the privilege to represent your country, we have an expectation that our players and coaches will stand and honor our flag while the national anthem is played.” Despicably, this policy was removed in February of this year.
Rapinoe continued to kneel and pitch fits every time she was denied the opportunity to showboat, even calling her coach at the time “homophobic” when the anthem was played while the team was in the locker room. Since then, our nation has had to endure this disgrace as player after player succumbed to this display and knelt before our anthem and flag. Unfortunately, it’s been the women’s national team that has led the charge.
That’s why it’s so interesting that former USWNT goalkeeper Hope Solo, of all people, is now calling out Rapinoe for “almost bullying” the team into kneeling for the national anthem at all their games. Solo said, “I’ve seen Megan Rapinoe almost bully players into kneeling because she really wants to stand up for something in her particular way.”
But is it wise to fully trust Solo’s take? She was lauded as the best female goalie in the world. Unfortunately, she lost her position on the national team for unsportsmanlike comments, a pattern of poor behavior, bullying, and committing domestic abuse off the field. At the time, Rapinoe was vocal in support of the national team’s decision to terminate Solo. One could speculate that Solo is taking the opportunity to fire back at Rapinoe while the national contempt against the USWNT is especially high after kneeling at the Tokyo Summer Olympic Games.
Even if that is Solo’s motive, we know her claim is almost certainly correct. We have seen over and over the power of bullying and cancel culture over these athletes and sports organizations. Among the instances of cancel culture, newly retired NFL quarterback Drew Brees had to apologize for saying he didn’t agree with players disrespecting the flag or our country, and MLB moved its All-Star Game out of Atlanta to punish the Georgia legislature for passing a voting law that was erroneously labeled “racist.”
At the end of the day, activists like Rapinoe may claim her motives are pure, but it’s really all about validation for herself and pressuring others to do likewise regardless of their actual opinions.
Solo herself may not be the most saintly of sources, but in this case, it may take a bully to call out a bully. Hopefully this will start to change the tide of anti-American and unpatriotic behavior that is destroying sports and, more specifically, the USWNT.
Insight: “Our modern society is engaged in polishing and decorating the cage in which man is kept imprisoned.” —Swami Nirmalananda (1863-1938)
Sad, but true: “Biden voters didn’t really want a President. Nah, what they wanted was a wealth redistributor, a student loans-forgiver, a stimulus check-issuer, a mask mandator, an open-borders advocator, a tax-increaser, a critical race theory-endorser, and an eviction moratorium-extender.” —Darrell B. Harrison
For the record: “There was a second mission, which was to prevent Afghanistan from ever becoming a safe haven for terrorism again. Unfortunately, we have failed.” —former Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta
Non compos mentis I: “We don’t have a complete picture obviously of where every article of defense materials has gone, but certainly a fair amount of it has fallen into the hands of the Taliban.” —National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan
Non compos mentis II: “What has unfolded over the past month has proven decisively that it would’ve taken a significant American troop presence — multiple times greater than what President Biden was handed — to stop a Taliban onslaught. And we would’ve taken casualties.” —Jake Sullivan
Non compos mentis III: “The Taliban have informed us they are prepared to provide the safe passage of civilians to the airport.” —Jake Sullivan
The BIG Lie: “It’s pretty clear this [Afghanistan debacle] probably would have been just as bad, if not worse, under what Trump wanted to do.” —NBC anchor Chuck Todd
Whew! “In Afghanistan, I would like to assure our neighbors, our original countries, [that] we are not going to allow our territory to be used against anybody or any country in the world. So the whole global community should be assured that we are committed to these pleasures that you will not be harmed.” —Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid
And we have beachfront property in Tennessee: “We don’t want to repeat any conflict, any war, again, and we want to do away with the factors for conflict. … Therefore, the Islamic Emirate does not have any kind of hostility or animosity with anyone. Animosities have come to an end, and we would like to live peacefully.” —Zabihullah Mujahid
Village idiot: “Why should our soldiers be fighting radicals in a civil war in Afghanistan? We’ve got our own on Capitol Hill.” —Stephen Colbert
Belly laugh of the week: “It was a unique situation being a brother to a politician in a scandal and being part of the media. I tried to do the right thing, and I just want you all to know that.” —CNN’s Chris Cuomo
And last… “Joe Biden has not spoken to a single world leader since the fall of Afghanistan. This is not what you expect from the leader of the free world.” —Senator Marsha Blackburn
How the Taliban conquest could return Ten lost Tribes to Israel “The Taliban takeover of Afghanistan puts hundreds of thousands of Afghans in danger for their rights and lives,” Lasky tweeted. “I appeal to the Deputy Foreign Minister and Deputy Prime Minister, Yair Lapid, to open the gates of the State of Israel and receive refugees. approximately 40% of Afghanistan’s population, approximately 50 million people, is ethnically Pashtun. Pashtun believe they are decedents of King Saul who later converted to Islam. They call themselves Bani-Israel, like the Hebrew, B’nai Israel, meaning the children of Israel. There is reason to believe that this claim is historically accurate in which case Lasky’s call to admit the Afghani refugees would be the prophesied ingathering of the exiles that precedes the Messianic era.
Israel signs deal with Jordan for agricultural imports during sabbatical year Israel and Jordan signed a deal on Tuesday to prioritize agricultural imports from the Jewish state’s eastern neighbor during the upcoming shmita (sabbath year) that starts in September. Shmita is mandated by the Torah and is observed in Judaism. Israeli farmers must leave their land fallow and cease all agricultural activity for the year in order to be certified kosher.
Three volcanoes are erupting at the same time in Alaska Along a remote, roughly 800-mile stretch of Alaska’s Aleutian island chain, three volcanoes are erupting at the same time, with at least two spewing low levels of ash and steam. The simultaneous eruptions have been going on for more than a week but do not currently pose a threat to nearby communities and have not disrupted any air travel so far,
Carafano: Joe Biden’s Afghanistan Speech Proves He Will Be President Chaos Before … Joe Biden addressed the nation on the crisis in Afghanistan, someone should have reminded him of the adage “When you are in a deep hole, stop digging.” Because on top of his strategic failures in Afghanistan, he has now made a massive political misjudgment. By denying responsibility, Biden solidly made his decision-making the issue. He will have to live with the tsunami of inquiry that will follow. Now that Biden has put himself in the cross-hairs, he doesn’t have a lot of options. He can’t easily shift responsibility and fire people or have them resign. Anyone he tries to throw under the bus might well turn and point out the obvious — it was the president’s call to run away,
Grace To Strengthen Into Hurricane As Storm Eyes Landfall Near Cancun National Hurricane Center (NHC) expects Tropical Storm Grace to strengthen into a hurricane over the northwest Caribbean and possibly make landfall over the Yucatan Peninsula later on Thursday. Earlier this month, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) upgraded the number of named storms to 21 from its prior forecast of 15 in May. NOAA expects at least ten hurricanes and up to five major ones with winds above 100 mph.
Biden To Increase Food Stamp Benefits By 25%, The Largest Hike In The Program’s History Having solved domestic problems like inflation and foreign problems like the complete and total collapse of Afghanistan in minutes after the U.S. withdrew from the country, President Biden is now focused on offering the largest long-term increase in food stamp benefits in the program’s history. The program adds “billions of dollars in costs” to the government, Bloomberg noted in a writeup this weekend. But, in Biden’s defense, what are dollars anymore, after all?
Well-preserved skeleton sheds light on culture in ancient Pompeii The body of the man, believed to be in his 60s, was found in a tomb which dated to the final decades of Pompeii, before it was destroyed by the Vesuvius volcano in 79 AD. A commemorative inscription named the man as Marcus Venerius Secundio and made a reference to theatre performances at Pompeii in Greek …
Christian Lebanese party: Prepare for conflict to bring down Lebanon gov’t Lebanon’s Christian Kataeb Party called on Monday to prepare for a field confrontation to bring down the Lebanese government “by all available means,” after at least 27 people were killed in a fuel tank explosion in Akkar in northern Lebanon. The party, which played an important role in the Lebanese Civil War, called on Lebanese President Michel Aoun and the entire Lebanese parliament to resign and called on the United Nations Security council to hold an emergency meeting on the situation in Lebanon.
The last Jew in Afghanistan is staying – report Afghanistan’s last remaining Jew, Zabulon Simantov, has decided to remain in Afghanistan despite the Taliban’s takeover, according to a tweet by Israeli journalist Zvika Klein who cited WION. However, he has recently stated in a report to WION, “I will not leave my home. If I had left, there would have been no one to maintain the synagogue.”
Harps built for Third Temple destroyed in major Jerusalem forest fire Everything seemed on track to bring harps into the world for their unique music to be played in the Temple until Sunday when Arab terrorists set the blaze that became a massive forest fire surrounding Jerusalem. In addition to the 5,000 acres of forest, the workshop of Micah Harari in which he had painstakingly created unique handmade harps for more than three decades burned to the ground, destroying his tools and many harps that stood waiting for the Temple.
Afghan body found in US C-17 landing gear, reports say An Afghan’s body was reportedly found in the landing gear of a U.S. Air Force C-17 Globemaster III transport aircraft on Monday after transporting Afghan citizens from Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul. After leaving Kabul, the C-17’s landing gear was malfunctioning, prompting the crew to declare an emergency. Upon landing at another airport, human remains were discovered in the wheel well, three people close to the situation told The Washington Post on Tuesday. Two sources close to the situation who spoke with Politico also gave the same account.
We are entering day five of a crisis where thousands of American civilians are trapped in Afghanistan, and the president of the United States is … on vacation, is nowhere to be found, is not talking to the American public, is totally incommunicado, is not even releasing statements or speaking to other world leaders.
Questions continue to swirl over why some social media platforms like Twitter are giving the Taliban, a terrorist organization under U.S. law, a public platform having permanently banned American dissidents and the President of the United States himself.
After Facebook and YouTube moved to ban any accounts associated with the Taliban following their takeover of Afghanistan, Twitter faced scrutiny as to why it hadn’t followed suit.
When a Taliban representative was asked for a response on the ban, he chided Facebook for tacitly supporting free speech while silencing those who express the wrong opinions.
“This question should be asked to those people who are claiming promoters of freedom of speech, who do not allow publication of all information. I can ask the Facebook company. This question should be asked to them,” said the Taliban spokesman.