By JOHN KANELIS / firstname.lastname@example.org
For four years the words “human rights” were rarely uttered by the president of the United States.
Now they have returned to the presidential vernacular. President Biden’s statement this week after the release of intelligence on the death of a prominent Washington Post columnist includes a fulsome statement about the need to protect the rights of all human beings.
The report blames Saudi Arabia’s crown prince, Mohammad bin Salman, for ordering the brutal murder of Jamal Khashoggi, a Post columnist and critic of the Saudi regime. President Biden has refused to sanction the man known as MBS, fearing some long-term harm to U.S.-Saudi relations. I wish he would have dropped the hammer on MBS, but that’s another story.
It’s out: MBS ordered killing | High Plains Blogger
As for the human rights mantra, I welcome its return to the top of our foreign policy pecking order.
We must stand in this country as a beacon of individual liberty and respect for the rights of all humanity. Only the president of the United States can speak to that priority and only the POTUS can alert the world that we mean it when we invoke those rights for everyone.
Human rights did not get much attention from Donald J. Trump. Indeed, the ex-president sought to curry favor with despots and dictators, such as, oh, North Korea’s Kim Jong Un, by proclaiming some sort of bizarre “love affair” with him. Of course, Trump infamously refused to criticize Russian bad boy Vladimir Putin for anything, let alone for the way he treats those who live under his ham-fisted rule.
I hope those days are gone. I also hope to hear much more from President Biden on the value he will place on human rights. May he say it loudly and often going forward.
Donald John Trump is just happy as the dickens that the world’s most infamous dictatorial recluse isn’t dead after all.
How nice. How sweet.
North Korea’s killer/despot Kim Jong Un has made a public appearance, putting aside rumors that he might have died from a botched medical procedure. Trump’s reaction was predictable, I suppose, given that the two of them reportedly are “in love” with each other.
Trump put out a Twitter message: “I, for one, am glad to see he is back and well!” OK. I’ll just add that I happen to have wished he had left this Earth … not that Kim’s death would make anything any better for North Korea.
It’s just that Kim Jong Un is a ruthless tyrant who allows mass starvation among his people while he lives in relative opulence and spends tons of money developing a nuclear arsenal, which he uses to threaten South Korea, Japan and, oh, yeah, the United States of America.
Trump wishes Kim well? They deserve each other.
I got into a snit the other day with some supporters of Sen. Bernie Sanders, who at this moment is the front runner for the Democratic Party presidential nomination.
They chewed me out for dismissing his candidacy. Well, here comes Round Two.
Bernie Sanders is wrong to give the late Cuban dictator Fidel Castro any props for the “good” he did while leading the island nation for a seeming eternity.
Sanders told Anderson Cooper on “60 Minutes” Sunday night that Castro enacted a literacy program when he took over the Cuban government in 1959. “That’s a bad thing”? Sanders asked, rhetorically.
Well, no. It’s not. However, none of that negates the firing squads that Castro deployed to rid Cuba of political dissenters. Nor does it counter the myriad human rights abuses that Castro imposed during his tyrannical reign. Nor does it overrule the fact that in 1962 he welcomed Soviet missiles onto his island, allowing the Soviet Union military geniuses to program the missiles to strike targets in the United States.
Sen. Sanders is trying to make it clear that he despises autocrats, strongmen, dictators and tyrants. He is drawing a line between himself and Donald Trump, who professes to be “in love” with North Korean tyrant Kim Jong Un.
OK, that’s fine. However, Sen. Sanders needs to navigate his way around any effort to speak well of another tyrant, Fidel Castro.
If Sen. Sanders has any hope of winning the 2020 presidential election in the event that Democrats nominate him this summer, he’ll have to assuage the anger he is igniting among a key voting bloc of Cuban expatriates in South Florida that has long memories of Fidel Castro’s monstrous rule.
The event that occurred today at the so-called “demilitarized zone” that separates South and North Korea won’t matter substantively.
The symbolism — and its complete context — constitutes something potentially remarkable.
Donald Trump became the first sitting U.S. president to set foot in the world’s most reclusive nation. He walked across the DMZ into North Korea to shake hands with one of his BFFs, North Korean tyrant Kim Jong Un.
On the one hand, the president’s brief foray into no man’s land deserves praise. The very idea of an incumbent president stepping onto the soil of a nation with which we still are technically at war is astonishing on its face.
What’s more, consider this: The president is a Republican, a member of a party that historically has been openly harsh and intolerant of policies espoused by diehard communists; indeed, Kim Jong Un is a Marxist to the core.
I am shaking my head.
The complete context of this weird relationship, though, inhibits full-throated praise of Trump’s tip-toeing into North Korea. Kim Jong Un is among the most despicable of world leaders. His people are starving, yet he continues to promote massive military buildups. He threatens South Korea, Japan and the United States.
How in the world can the president continue to heap praise on this individual? How in the name of diplomatic norms can this individual keep referring to the “beautiful letters” he get from Kim Jong Un?
Trump’s foray into North Korea made great optics. He didn’t get anything from it. The United States is not safer today from the blustering and bloviating that comes from Pyongyang.
Still, it was an astounding event.
Donald Trump apparently, if I understand all of this correctly, defended North Korean tyrant Kim Jong Un against reports that he had his half-brother killed because the half-bro was a CIA agent working for the United States of America.
Trump said this in response to a question about the reported murder of Kim’s kin. Read it perhaps you can make sense of it, as reported by The Atlantic:
“I see that, and I just received a beautiful letter from Kim Jong Un,” Trump said. “I think the relationship is very well, but I appreciated the letter. I saw the information about the CIA with regard to his brother or half brother, and I would tell him that would not happen under my auspices. I wouldn’t let that happen under my auspices. I just received a beautiful letter from Kim Jong Un.”
Kim’s half-brother, Kim Jong Nam, reportedly was murdered in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, by agents who poisoned him in 2017 with nerve gas. This isn’t the first time Kim Jong Un has been associated with brutal murders of family members. In Trump’s world, though, it appears to be OK, given that the president is trying to build a relationship with the murderous dictator.
I’m just wondering what in the world Trump means that such an act “would not happen under my auspices. I wouldn’t let that happen under my auspices.”
But he got that “beautiful letter from Kim Jong Un.”
Is this man, our president, in possession of his faculties?
What in the world … ?
Donald Trump said in the wake of the failed Hanoi summit with North Korean tyrant Kim Jong Un that he respects the murderer who runs that country. He anticipates building a wonderful friendship with North Korea and with Kim Jong Un.
Now we hear from South Korean media that Kim ordered the execution of North Korea’s special envoy to the United States. He accused the diplomat of spying for the United States. This was the fellow, by the way, who masterminded the Hanoi summit that ended suddenly when Trump walked away without obtaining a nuclear arms agreement with North Korea.
So, is the president of the United States really and truly serious about forging a friendship with this murderous madman?
Someone needs to splash me with some cold water. I am utterly astonished that this clown serves as president of the United States of America.
Donald Trump ventured to Japan for a state visit, to meet the new Japanese emperor, attend a sumo wrestling match, play some golf with the Japanese prime minister, talk a bit about trade . . . and then bash former U.S. Vice President Joe Biden and say nice things about the world’s weirdest tyrant, Kim Jong Un of North Korea.
Biden wants to win the Democratic Party presidential nomination next year and run against Trump. He’s taking the fight right to the president, saying some harsh things about his tenure in the White House.
Meanwhile, Kim Jong Un — who Trump has said he “loves” — launched missiles while threatening our allies in the region. What does the president say about Kim? He has faith that Kim will keep the promises he made to Trump to, oh, dismantle his nuclear weapons program.
Except that intelligence experts say he is doing no such thing. They say he is accelerating the development of those weapons.
It’s really strange, the way I see it.
A U.S. president attacks a potential foe while standing on foreign soil and then makes an expression of good faith about a man who is known to be one of the world’s most murderous despots.
What in the world has happen to what we used to consider to be normal bilateral relations? What has become of our inherent mistrust of one of the world’s most reclusive, unpredictable tyrants? Must I remind everyone that Kim Jong Un’s grandfather invaded South Korea in 1950, intending to conquer that nation and launching the Korean War, which killed more than 33,000 American service personnel?
I don’t get it, man!
Kim Jong Un must have jilted Donald J. Trump.
The two leaders had exchanged warm greetings. Trump called the North Korean tyrant/despot/dictator/murderer a “sharp cookie” and a “strong leader.” I’m not sure what bouquets Kim tossed at the U.S. president in return.
Then the president made some sort of goofy assertion that he and Kim are “in love.”
Now comes word that the North Koreans have launched short-range missiles into the sea. They’re testing their hardware yet again. Oh, and other reports indicate that the North Koreans are stepping up their development of nuclear weapons, despite guarantees from Trump that they were “denuclearizing the Korean Peninsula.”
This is what you get when you throw in with a Marxist tyrant, seeming to believe his vacuous promises.
Trump should have taken the posture of being unable to trust Kim Jong Un as far as he could toss his overfed torso. He hasn’t done so.
He “likes” the lunatic who starves his people while pouring money he doesn’t have into building a military arsenal he threatens to use against South Korea or anyone else who stands in his way.
Ah, but Donald Trump is “making America great again.”
Yep, that’ll do it, Mr. President.
What in the name of international diplomatic norms is going on here?
Donald Trump’s administration announced sanctions against North Korea, citing its recommitment to building its nuclear arsenal despite promises to “denuclearize.” Then the president, without consulting anyone, reverses his own administration.
The president removed the sanctions. Why?
About all we got immediately came Friday from White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders, who said only that Trump “likes Chairman Kim” Jong Un, the tyrant/killer/despot/madman who runs the reclusive Marxist regime in North Korea.
The president who dismisses American war heroes, denigrates U.S. intelligence analysts, questions his homeland security team, ignores the advice he gets from “the best people” surrounding him “likes” a guy like Kim Jong Un — the overfed dictator who starves his own people.
Go . . . figure. If you can.
This can’t be happening. Can it?
North Korea reportedly is reassembling a missile launch site that it supposedly took down after its tyrant Kim Jong Un met with Donald Trump at their first summit in 2018 in Singapore.
Their second summit, held this past week in Hanoi, didn’t go well. They broke it off. Trump jetted back to Washington, while Kim ventured back to Pyongyang. They failed to strike a deal on nuclear disarmament in North Korea.
How could that be? Donald Trump said North Korea was no longer a nuclear threat. He said so after their first meeting. I mean, he got a “love letter” from Kim. The two men became BFFs. Trump says nice things these days about the overfed despot he once denigrated as “Little Rocket Man.”
Oh, but U.S. intelligence experts said North Korea remains a nuclear threat to South Korea, to Japan and perhaps eventually to the United States.
Trump isn’t having any of it. What’s more, he decided upon returning home that the United States will cease its regular military exercise with South Korea, seemingly thinking he could get North Korea to reciprocate by ending its missile launch program.
Now comes word that North Korea is restoring its missile site.
Who would of thought that would happen?