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Wouldn't It Be Amazing ...

Wouldn't it be amazing if Putin plotted everything the last three days.  After all, this is a man who acts viciously and maliciously worldwide with impunity.  He has been knocking off his adversaries inside and outside Russia for months, if not years.

Bashar al-Assad is his dependent and is taking instructions from Russia.  Were the instruction to come from Putin to use chemical weapons on his own people, he certainly would do it.

Putin himself is dealing over the last several weeks with not only increasing opposition to his autocratic rule at home, but the increasing likelihood that his direct coordination with Trump in the US election is about to be exposed.

In order to save himself and his puppet government in US, Putin very well may have set in play the events to precipitate an attack by the US against Syria, knowing it would enable Trump to wag the dog.  By diverting attention from their pre-election coordination for just a few days, Putin might just be able to keep his puppet in place.

Yes, it would be stranger than fiction if Putin plotted this whole thing to save Trump from impeachment. 

I lived in Russia.  I practiced law there.  It seems perfectly possible to me.


Russia’s Billionaires May Demand Putin Call in his Chips

Russia’s billionaires lost trillions when Muammar Gaddafi fell in Libya.  Putin failed to protect their interest, but maintained his power, and hence his own status as the wealthiest man in the world, by promising it wouldn’t happen again.

To this end, Putin has backed Bashar al-Assad in Syria, where Russians have invested fortunes and extended credit at even greater rates than they ever did in Libya.  Putin has stayed true to his backers’ economic interests, even though the simplest rationale would have told him to cut bait and run long ago.

By manipulating the US election, Putin’s backers feel their oates and were especially excited to see their pal, Rex Tillerson as Secretary of State stand up for their interests. 

Six days ago, Tillerson came through for Putin.  He not only finally uttered something to the media, but when he did, he equivocated on the longstanding U.S. position that Bashar al-Assad must go.   He stated that it would be the US position henceforth that it would be up the Syrian people to decide whether Assad stays or goes.  In other words, the US would have no problem if he were to stay.

Assad again miscalculated.  He somehow figured that because he had used chemical weapons on his own people before, Tillerson’s comment gave him carte blanche to do it again.  (Barack Obama’s ineffectiveness allowed him to do this with impunity in 2013).

While the President may be in Putin’s debt, Trump is also apparently under the influence of strong women, like Nikki Haley and Ivanka herself.  These women, and now Trump, may not be so prepared to let the latest violation of the 1949 Geneva Convention on the Protection of Civilians in Times of War (the 4th Geneva Convention) without punishment.

Bashar al-Assad is a broken man and doesn’t seem to care whether he stays or goes.  Russia’s oligarchs aren’t broken.  They want Putin to keep America in line. 


Who In His or Her Right Mind ...

When you stop and realize what a terrible job it really is, you have to think deeply about why anyone would want it.  If you think for a minute about the huge weight of the office, the incessant attention to anything and everything you say, the boring, agenda laden people around you, the supplicant donors, the media who would sit with you in the bathroom if allowed, the constant visits by heads of state, all the daily ceremonies celebrating anything and everything, one has to have a super sized ego or a deep down and massive inferiority complex to do this to him or herself.

And, really, the job of President is largely working with members of Congress who are as dumb as coal and interested in little more than padding their own pockets.  They too made a deal with the devil for riches and status.

And, still worse, you have the responsibility of the world and all of the fast moving trauma and dangers associated with whims by other world leaders and actions by terrorists groups.  In fact, you literally have singular responsibility, in the best case scenario, for solving or keeping the world from stupid but devastating wars and, even more, protecting the country and the world from nuclear catastrophe.

And, in the 21st Century, it is worse and more scary than ever before.  Now, we have to live with the possibilities, however frightening, of the President of the US setting off a cascading set of disasters leading to the end of civilization as we know it.

It’s really more than any sane person would want or do.  And, as such, it is unfair to complain about anyone who is stupid enough to go for it. 

Hillary was driven by a blind desire to bask in the power of it all, too stupid to realize how much things had changed, even since Bill.  And, the only Republican left standing was equally driven by a fierce inner drive to be on top, and equally unaware of the huge dangers and inhuman responsibilities of the office.

Being President of the United States today is far different from what it was in years gone by.  It is a job like no other, and not a very attractive one at that.