“ Michael, you are assuming a lot of things and ignoring a primary fact.”
Interesting, the only “assumption” I made, was based upon the information that the Information came from Jordan. Based upon all reports, and none of them from ThinkProgress, NYT, WaPo, or PBS. It would seem that the Nation that gave the Information to the US was Israel, whether it was collected by their Intelligence Operatives/Assets, or they received it from Jordan’s is not something that will probably ever be truly clear. Otherwise, those 4 Nations are the Primary sources of Intelligence Information from Syria. That is not an assumption, nor does it ignore anything.
The Golden Rule is a well known standard. We have for years been hounding Israel, because the US has suspected that they have traded US Intel with Russia for Information they desired. It had never been proven or confirmed, so nothing ever came from it. Their Media is currently finding this to be a combination of Irony that it was the US that passed information to Russia, as well as horror that the our President is so loose with Information that they specifically requested not be shared with Russia. The reason, is that Russia supports Assad, Israel does not. The Crematorium that Assad has been using means they will never be on the same side as Russia on what should be done in Syria.
President Trump, as well as other Administration Officials have at this point Publicly admitted he stated Information about the Situation, which he should not have done. It was also admitted that he had done so when bragging about how good the Intel was that he received. Their defense is that he did not release the methods used because he didn’t know them. That he wanted to work with them on ISIS. Etc etc.
Simple Fact. Israel had notified the US earlier this year not to share any Intelligence received from them with Russia specifically, or anyone else without their permission. Sharing Intel from a foreign Nation, whether you understand all the nuances or not is breaking the Golden Rule of Intelligence Sharing.
“You have no idea what passed between Mr. Trump and Mssrs. Lavrov and Kislyak in a short, casual conversation.”
Overall, no we do not. However, the Situation is about what Mr. Trump has already admitted he did discuss. Which was a situation we were only aware of because of another Nation had shared with us, and which did NOT want Russia to be aware of. The rest of the conversation is not relevant to that point.
“Secrecy is established under Presidential Order. The President is automatically (a) exempt from security classification, and (b) the supreme arbiter regarding what is or is not secret. That is a matter of law, “thinkprogress” hyperbolic rants notwithstanding.”
Under US law that is all true. It also has no relevance to Foreign Nations, or the agreements in place for Intelligence Information being shared. Just because he has the Legal Authority to share information does not mean it is a good idea. Especially if the Nation he received it from does not agree. Your point will be cold comfort if a Nation does not share Intelligence with us because our President is a braggart with loose lips, and Americans die because of that. I get my news from many sources, not all American. His error here has made many Nations concerned. Their point is that because he only wants to get information on line bullet points, he is not able to even judge what should or should not be said. His staff is obviously no capable of reigning that in. And they are looking at a choice. Share Intelligence with the US, and take the now very possible risk that it is exposed without their permission, which would endanger their Intelligence Networks and Assets, or not share information with the US and preserve their Networks and Information to protect their own Nation. Not a tough choice. Especially in light of our Presidents comments that a Nation should look out for its own interest first. Which would be in their Interest? Not sharing or endangering their Intelligence Networks and Assets? We both know the answer to that.
“ I will add a third set of realities for consideration. We (the U.S.) are the ones responsible for all the Middle East wars that are going on today.”
Partially, and definitely an oversimplification. We are definitely a major factor, however not the main cause as you imply. Simple case in point, Daesh (ISIS). We are not the main cause of it. Saudi Arabia and Turkey are. Saudi Arabia wanted to train an unofficial force to work against Iranian goals. So they paid for this force to be trained in and by Turkey. They recruited Religious Wahabi Extremist, which is the main Islamic Denomination of Saudi Arabia. It also happens to be the Primary Denomination of Extremist Terror groups. Turkey trained this group to self fund, acquire weapons, take over other extremist groups and to fight modern militaries. Where we enter the equation is Iraq. After the Iraq War, we fired all of Saddam’s higher Officers, as well as his Intelligence Network operatives. Whom were the best in the Middle East. We did not allow them to gain employment, and we refused to let them leave Iraq. Any fool could have foreseen what would happen with that. Trained Military Officers and Strategist and the best Intelligence Operation in the Middle East, left to starve, while a Saudi/Turkey backed extremist group was starting up to fight against Al Qaeda, Syria, and Iran. They joined forces. The Officers had the Leadership ability the group lacked, and the Intel Agents had the abilities they also lacked. This created Daesh, and is also why they were able to expand so quickly. They were trained to do this, had the Intelligence to know when and where to go, and the Military Experience to plan the whole operation. The Middle East has its own issues, and while we do screw things up when we intervene, it would not change the wars there. They would still occur.
“ We need Russian cooperation to shove the genie back into the bottle and the Russians are the primary force that is defeating the Takfiri jihadis. Any meeting of the minds that we can achieve is a good thing. Why you would object is a mystery.”
There is no way to put this Genie back in the bottle. Iran wishes the Alawi regime to stay in Power in Syria for geopolitical reasons, which aligns with Russia. The rest of the Middle East would rather Syria change to Sunni Rule, which aligns with the US Interest. For the US to Align with Russia would require us to Align against the wishes of the Majority of Middle East Nations, of which our Allies belong, such as Saudi Arabia and Israel. Jordan is a wild card, since they oppose Assad, but they are gaining economic ties to Russia and wish that to continue, however they are terrified of Wahhabism and so wish to fight Daesh. Saudi Arabia will be of no help, they could not even trust their own Army when it appeared that Daesh would breach their borders. They had to bring in Pakistani and Egyptian troops to place behind their own to ensure their own army did not turn on them. Russia feels we are Invaders in the Middle East and need to leave completely. There is no good path forward period. And aligning with Russia in this would anger our own allies. I would also note that Russia has never had had better success than we have in the Middle East. Truthfully, if we were going to engage we should have taken Iran’s former offer to join with us Militarily to take on Daesh. They were willing to spend their Troops if we offer support services in the fight. We declined. Now instead of working with us, they fight on the opposite side of this war. Both fighting Daesh, but with a different outcome in mind. Since we cannot go back in time an avoid this fight, we are now stuck. Either we end up supporting Assad who commits war crimes against his own people to make peace with Russia and anger all our own allies, since none of our Allies support Assad, and support could be just leaving the field to Russia. Or we bite the bullet and finish it. Neither is a great option. But we have to choose, support Assad's side, or our Allies. It should be a simple choice, although many, including you seem to think that supporting Russia is the better option, even though that means turning on our Allies to do it.
“ It is funny … but not really funny at all … how the Dems were anti-Bush, BUT eagerly supportive of every war we have launched since 9/11. When it was Mr. Obama and Ms Hillary doing the slaughter, the Dems were equally avid to continue the old wars and to start new ones.”
Yawn. Politicians of Both Sides supported the Wars. If you want political hypocrisy you don’t have to look far. I also notice you left out Republican Reactions to the wars, and the Hypocrisy concerning Frmr President Obama. Politicians are Political Creatures, which is a shame.
“ Trump did a couple of abortive bombings and the MSM and the Dems were thrilled that “finally” (after only a few months in office) Mr. Trump was bombing in true “Presidential” fashion.”
Everyone has been opposed to Assad, and since you pointed out the Democrats why did you omit the Republican reactions to the Bombings? They were just as happy. Are you just against one Parties love of War?
“ Wrong-headed is far too kind a descriptor for such depraved hypocrisy.”
Given you are patently avoiding the Republican side of this equation it is entertaining to see you state this. Both parties are guilty of this. Ignoring Republicans Hypocrisy to focus solely upon Democrats makes you guilty of that which you decry. It is also interesting given the point of the Article, as well as my reply you commented on, has no relevance to this rather interesting deflection.
“ BTW, the NYT, WaPo, PBS, and “thinkprogress” are woeful liars of long standing. If they are spruiking something, it is sure to be faux-outrage and clickbait. It is our new shameful reality.”
Because I post on ThinkProgress I therefore get my news from here? Speaking of making assumptions… I choose to get my news from a Variety of sources, I also choose to look into it. You also never pointed out anywhere that I was wrong in my post, and this would be your defense of that. Since the Article here is from ThinkProgress, and it references news that has been on the NYT, WaPo, and PBS it must be lies and clickbait, thus undercutting anything I had posted. Too bad I did not get my information from them. If you are going to tell someone they are wrong, then it is on you to cite why, and to make your points relevant. Have a Nice Day.