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Generational Dynamics Web Log for 15-Oct-2014
15-Oct-14 World View -- NY Times reveals Saddam Hussein had large quantities of WMDs

Web Log - October, 2014

15-Oct-14 World View -- NY Times reveals Saddam Hussein had large quantities of WMDs

Turkey-France meeting signals new confusion in Turkey's Syria policy

This morning's key headlines from

NY Times reveals Saddam Hussein had large quantities of WMDs

Saddam Hussein
Saddam Hussein

In a seemingly bizarre twist to the history of America's 2003 ground invasion of Iraq, which was widely supported at the time, but widely despised later when weapons of mass destruction (WMDs) were not found, an extensive report by the New York Times reveals that Saddam Hussein did, in fact, have large quantities of WMDs, many left over from the past.

The irony, of course, is that the NY Times led the loony left to oppose the Iraq war, and was openly aiding and abetting the enemy, in a manner that I considered to be treasonous. (See, for example, "NY Times columnist Thomas Friedman shows ignorance and evasiveness about al-Qaeda in Iraq" from 2007.)

The NY Times constantly printed misinformation designed to harm the United States and the Bush Administration. They predicted that President Bush's "surge" would fail, and events proved that they were historically wrong.

As I wrote several months ago ( "18-Jun-14 World View -- Generational Dynamics historical analysis of the violence in Iraq"), if the Bush administration had not ordered the ground invasion, then Iran would have continued to believe that Saddam had WMDs, and would have aggressively begun its own WMD program.

Now the NY Times tells us that Saddam had WMDs after all, which means that the Iraq ground invasion was apparently fully justified.

The new concern is that the Islamic State / of Iraq and Syria (IS or ISIS or ISIL) may also find, or have already found, other caches of WMDs for their own use. NY Times

Turkey-France meeting signals new confusion in Turkey's Syria policy

On Sunday, the U.S. National Security Advisor Susan Rice said that Turkey had "made a commitment that they will in the first instance allow the US and its partners to use Turkish bases and territory," meaning that U.S. warplanes on bombing runs into Syria could take off from and return to Turkey's Incirlik. On Monday, Turkish officials said that Rice was mistaken, and that no such agreement had been reached.

This is just the next in the unending series of blunders and missteps by the foreign policy team of Barack Obama, John Kerry, and Susan Rice, who might ironically be called "the gang that can't shoot straight."

But in this case it also highlights the chaos in Turkey's own policy towards Syria, as Kobani appears to be close to falling to the Islamic State / of Iraq and Syria (IS or ISIS or ISIL), despite American-led airstrikes.

Turkey president Recep Tayyip Erdogan plans to meet with France's president François Hollande, as soon as the parties can arrange a suitable date, Hollande has expressed support for Erdogan's plan to establish a no-fly zone in Syria, directed at the air force of the Bashar al-Assad regime. Erdogan and Turkey have been internationally isolated over it Syria stance. America and Western countries have refused to support the no-fly zone because it would put the coalition in conflict with al-Assad's forces, and the U.S. has said that defeating ISIS is more important than defeating al-Assad. This is a clear disagreement between Turkey and the U.S., and it may now be the case that France is going to be on the side of Turkey.

Turkey may be opposed to the entire U.S. policy in Syria. Erdogan doesn't like ISIS, but if they're willing to fight al-Assad, he'd like to let them. Erdogan doesn't like the people who live in Kobani, because they're Kurds, and Turkish Kurds, in the form of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) fought a 30-year insurgency in Turkey, though the insurgency is currently supposedly in the midst of a "peace process." In fact, Erdogan refers to both ISIS and the Kurds as being terrorists. So, really, Erdogan doesn't really care if ISIS overruns Kobani and massacres the Kurds or not.

Erdogan's statement of equivalence between ISIS and the PKK is being criticized by his political opponents within Turkey. A pro-Kuridish political opponent, Selahattin DemirtaS, is pointing out some chaotic contradictions in Erdogan's policies:

"If you think it [the PKK] is same as ISIS, why are you seeking a settlement [peace process]? Why is the state holding talks with the PKK? ISIS is no party to have negotiations with. If PKK is like that, you should not have held talks with it. How will you bring back people from the mountains with such an attitude? ...

You [Erdogan] said that Syria was Turkey's issue, as well as Gaza, Bosnia and Somali, and defended military action there; however, with [Kurdish] Kobani, you said otherwise. If Kobani is not Turkey's issue, then we [Kurds] are not living in Turkey. If this is your stance when my brothers are threatened by a group of rapists and barbarians [ISIS], then you are not our government."

In fact, the "peace process" with the PKK may be over anyway. There is growing fury among Kurds that Turkey is willing to permit a massacre of Kurds in Kobani. Turkey's Kurdish population rioted last week in cities across the country, and 35 people died in clashes with police. And on Tuesday, Turkey's warplanes bombed PKK bases in southeastern Turkey, on the Iraq border. These are Turkey's first bombing raids since the "peace process" began two years ago, and probably signal its demise.

It's possible that the fall of Kobani to ISIS will trigger widespread Kurdish riots in Turkey, forcing Erdogan to fight either ISIS in Syria or Kurds in Turkey. Cihan (Ankara) and Hurriyet (Istanbul) and Today's Zaman (Ankara) and VOA

WHO: Within two months, there may be 10,000 new Ebola cases per week

The World Health Organization (WHO) continues to issue warnings to alert the world of the impending Ebola disaster. On Tuesday, a WHO official warned that by mid-December, there could be up to 10,000 new Ebola cases per week, up from 1,000 new cases per week currently.

This is consistent with previous projections that the number of cases has been growing exponentially, doubling every 2-3 weeks. The WHO official didn't bother to project that 10,000 figure forward, by pointing out that it will be 100,000 per week within a couple more months, and continue to grow.

Who also estimated that the death rate was 70%, up from previous estimates of 50% -- meaning that 70% of those who get infected are dying. This could mean that 60-70% of Liberia's population will be dead within a year or so, with the resulting global economic crises and probable wars, as we described yesterday. CBS News

(Comments: For reader comments, questions and discussion, see the 15-Oct-14 World View -- NY Times reveals Saddam Hussein had large quantities of WMDs thread of the Generational Dynamics forum. Comments may be posted anonymously.) (15-Oct-2014) Permanent Link
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