Barack Obama says he wants the truth. On November 21, the New York Times reported allegations that military intelligence officials provided the president with skewed assessments that minimized the threat from ISIS and overstated the success of U.S. efforts against the group. The Times story was an update of reporting from theDaily Beast earlier this fall.
Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, former head of the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) during President Obama's tenure, went on the Kelly File last night to talk about the possible manipulation of ISIS intelligence. He said the investigation should "start at the top. Where intelligence starts and stops is at the White House."
In remarks a few days ago in Turkey, President Obama said this:
when I hear political leaders suggesting that there would be a religious test for which a person who’s fleeing from a war-torn country is admitted, when some of those folks themselves come from families who benefitted from protection when they were fleeing political persecution -- that’s shameful. That’s not American. That’s not who we are. We don’t have religious tests to our compassion.
At the end of World War II, a gifted young British expert on Russia named Thomas Brimelow—later ambassador to Poland, but at the time reporting from Moscow—ventured that what the Soviet Union respected most about Great Britain was “our ability to collect friends.” Indeed, having allies in this world matters if you want to advance your agenda. Of the many things a new American president will need to do in 2017, one is to begin repairing America’s relations with our key allies. Start with the United Kingdom.
At the end of this month representatives of some 200 nations will gather in Paris for the opening of a United Nations-sponsored conclave to prevent the cataclysm that President Barack Obama, backed by the moral authority of Pope Francis, believes will befall the world if we do not slow the pace of climate change. There will be no treaty to enshrine the deal, for the very good reason that such a treaty would not receive the consent of the U.S. Senate.
Last week, the Obama White House moved to ensure Hezbollah’s ability to point 100,000 missiles at Israel. That’s not how they would describe it, of course. But it was the Obama administration—as U.S. officials are quietly letting on—and not Russia that invited Iran to participate in talks in Vienna to resolve the Syrian civil war. By doing so, the White House legitimized the Islamic Republic as a “stakeholder” whose interests in Syria must be respected.
Pope Francis’s synod on the family adjourned on Sunday, October 25, after an acrimonious three weeks. This assembly of bishops, like a similar one last year, was convened because the pope is interested in changing Catholic teaching on divorce, remarriage, and, to a lesser extent, homosexuality.
Last week, Senate and House Democrats threw a party to celebrate the adoption day of Obama’s Iran deal. Ninety days after the White House signed the deal in Vienna, Obama directed the United States government to lift sanctions on Iran, the Democrats listened to a string ensemble in Washington, and all present pretended it was a joyous occasion.
During Tuesday's Democratic debate, presidential candidate Jim Webb ripped the Iranian nuclear deal, adding that the deal will allow Iran "to move forward and eventually acquire a nuclear weapon." Watch:
On Monday, President Obama asked Pulitzer Prize-winning author Marilynne Robinson about her faith:
“How do you reconcile the idea of faith being really important to you and you caring a lot about taking faith seriously with the fact that, at least in our democracy and our civic discourse, it seems as if folks who take religion the most seriously sometimes are also those who are suspicious of those not like them?”
There has been speculation that John Kerry and Iranian foreign minister Javad Zarif would be selected for the Nobel Peace Prize.
However, today it was announced that the prize will instead go to the Tunisian National Dialogue Quartet "for its decisive contribution to the building of a pluralistic democracy in Tunisia in the wake of the Jasmine Revolution of 2011."