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Friday, April 28, 2017
syria
Syria, Ceasefire

In Syria, Trump May Have To Learn The Hard Way

Hawks accused Obama of facilitating Assad’s brutality by standing aside. But it was not until Trump arrived that this nerve gas attack occurred. Maybe Assad felt emboldened after the administration indicated his regime is “a political reality that we have to accept,” as press secretary Sean Spicer said March 31. In that case, Trump is not compensating for Obama’s mistakes so much as his own.

April 10, 2017
Syria

In Syria, The First Step Down A Dangerous Road

Having opposed President Obama’s initiative to punish Assad following that attack, Donald Trump clearly has no idea what to do now that his missiles have landed in Syria. Nor do Congressional Republicans, whose enthusiastic support for Trump’s action today rings hollow for anyone who remembers how they rejected Obama’s request to authorize military force in 2013.

April 7, 2017
Syria, Turkey, Russia

Has Trump Launched The Next Great American Catastrophe In The Middle East?

Trump faces a different situation than Obama did in 2013. The Syrian government has consolidated its battlefield gains. The rebels, led by Al-Qaeda and supported heavily by the Gulf States and Saudi Arabia, are in retreat. Syria’s allies, Iran and Russia, are not budging. Russia is defending Syria’s action, not very convincingly.

April 7, 2017
air strikes

After Gas Attack, Trump Orders Air Strikes On Syrian Air Force Base

Trump ordered the air strikes just a day after he pointed the finger at Assad for this week’s chemical attack, which killed at least 70 people, many of them children, in the Syrian town of Khan Sheikhoun. The Syrian government has denied it was behind the attack.
Trump appeared to have opted for measured and targeted air strikes instead of a full-blown assault on Assad’s forces and installations.

April 6, 2017
Bannon

Trump Removes Steve Bannon From National Security Council

In a shift seen as a victory for National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster, the president removed his chief strategist, former Breitbart publisher Steve Bannon, from the National Security Council principals’ committee. From that powerful post, Bannon wielded substantive influence over critical policy issues, despite his lack of experience and qualifications.

April 5, 2017
Refugees

Major Arab States Leave Syrian Refugees ‘Out In The Cold’

Fighting inside Syria continues with grave implications for its population. Gains by the Syrian Arab Army, the government’s force, and its proxies had been swift in the past few months. These forces seized Aleppo and opened a corridor all the way down to Damascus, as well as taking Palmyra from ISIS and other towns in southern Syria.

March 30, 2017
Military, War, Trump

Trump’s Obscene War Machine

This is the old ‘guns vs. butter’ scenario taught to young students in elementary economics classes. If economics is a matter of choices over scare resources, and if budgets are a way to project your values, then Trump has made his views clear – guns matter more than butter.

March 2, 2017
Canada, Refugees

Facing An Uncertain Future In Trump’s America, Refugees Flee U.S. For Canada

Canadian police said on Monday they had bolstered their presence at the Quebec border and that border authorities had created a temporary refugee center to process a growing number of asylum seekers crossing from the United States. Last month, 452 people made claims in Quebec compared with 137 in January 2016, the agency said.

February 21, 2017
Mideast refugees arriving in Sweden

Sweden Mocks Trump’s ‘Alternative Facts’ On Fictional Refugee Incident

“Sweden? Terror attack? What has he been smoking? Questions abound,” former Swedish foreign minister Carl Bildt wrote on Twitter. Other Swedes mocked Trump by posting pictures of reindeer, meatballs, and people assembling IKEA furniture.

February 19, 2017
Refugee Policies

Taking Care Of Refugees Is A Moral Duty

It’s heartening, amid the wasteland of cynicism that our politics has become, to see church leaders going out on a limb, challenging not only Trump but all Christians in our body politic to attend to a central call of their faith — to serve the suffering — even though it involves sacrifice and risk.

February 12, 2017
Refugee

Religious Groups Appalled By Refugee Ban Cast Trump As An Adversary

People of faith have been on the front lines of refugee resettlement for decades, and they are both furious and disheartened that President Trump has halted the U.S. program. Instead of collecting housewares and making welcome signs, they are now bracing for a fight against a former ally: the U.S. government.

February 9, 2017
syria

Amnesty Report: Syrian Government Secretly Executing Thousands Of Prisoners

The Syrian government has secretly executed up to 13,000 prisoners in mass hangings and carried out systematic torture, according to Amnesty International. The prisoners, who included former military personnel suspected of disloyalty and people involved in unrest, underwent sham trials before military courts and were sometimes forced to make confessions under torture, Amnesty said.

February 8, 2017
Trump

While We Are Distracted By Tweets, Trump Is Building A Corporate State

The destructive toll of Donald Trump’s presidency is beginning to emerge, foreshadowing what’s likely to come as the White House and congressional Republicans begin to reverse, repeal, and replace federal laws and regulations. While Trump’s red-state supporters may be cheering now, they’ll soon feel the consequences.

February 7, 2017
Muslim Ban

What It Feels Like To Be Targeted By Trump’s Muslim Ban

You went through the legal channels, faced all the vetting and then—because of time—fell into a trench. You were reduced to your passport, and since it is hated, you were hated. One U.S. agency confounds another. This is chaos. Trump is not draining the swamp, he is muddying the waters.

February 7, 2017
Muslim Ban

Judges Across U.S. To Weigh Challenges To Trump Travel Ban

The states of Washington and Minnesota are together asking a judge to suspend the entire policy nationwide, which would represent the broadest ruling to date against Trump’s directive. Should the judge rule that Washington and Minnesota have legal standing to sue, it could help Democratic attorneys general take on Trump in court on issues beyond immigration.

February 3, 2017
Muslim-American women fight Trump to save our country

Trump’s Muslim Ban Is An Embarrassment To This Country

Trump’s ban created predictable chaos around the world. Watching the stranded travelers and bewildered families, I kept wishing I could apologize to those whose lives, careers, and plans were thrown into needless turmoil because a minority of American voters chose to invest a fear-mongering man-baby with the awesome powers of the presidency.

February 2, 2017
Muslim-American women against Trump

Muslim-American Women Fight Back Against Trump’s Ban

Muslim-American women were at the forefront of a peaceful resistance movement over the weekend protesting Trump’s executive order. Women and girls stand to be particularly affected by the executive order temporarily banning all refugees as well as all travelers from seven majority-Muslim countries, and indefinitely banning Syrian refugees.

February 1, 2017
Travel Ban, Trump, Immigration

U.S. History Shows The Folly Of Trump’s Immigration Ban

Banning immigration from seven majority Muslim countries and selectively admitting Christians is a bad idea for many moral and legal reasons. History shows that humiliating national or religious groups on the world stage by restricting their entry makes it harder to keep our allies. It can also create new enemies, which may put the U.S. at risk.

January 31, 2017
Trump

Trump’s ‘Travel Ban’ Intended To Create Chaos And Spur Fear

Donald Trump’s order was intended to create chaos, to generate fear among immigrants, and to send a message. Loud and clear it rang: The Trump administration will pontificate about terrorism and national security, but it is intentionally targeting Muslims. No wonder all hell broke loose.

January 31, 2017
Trump's executive order, immigration ban, loss of democracy

Trump’s Immigration Ban And The Loss Of Our Democracy

There is a reason officers who know what they are talking about do not use the expression “radical Islam.” It tars an entire faith and it contributes to creating the religious war Trump fears. The Muslim ban will make us less safe; worse, it erodes our democracy and contributes to making us a fear-and-hate-filled, divided nation at war with the world and progressively ourselves.

January 30, 2017
Heartland Trump Voters

America Divided: Heartland Voters Shrug Off Global Uproar Over Immigration Ban

The relaxed reaction among the kind of voters who drove Trump’s historic upset victory — working-class residents of Midwest and the South — provided a striking contrast to the uproar that has gripped major coastal cities, where thousands of protesters flocked to airports where immigrants had been detained.

January 30, 2017
Muslim Ban, Protests

Trump Administration Doubles Down On Muslim Ban Amid Massive Protests

“To be clear, this is not a Muslim ban, as the media is falsely reporting,” President Trump said in a statement on Sunday. “This is not about religion – this is about terror and keeping our country safe. There are over 40 different countries worldwide that are majority Muslim that are not affected by this order.”

January 30, 2017
Immigration, Sanctuary Cities

A National Sanctuary Campaign Rises To Defy Trump’s Xenophobic Agenda

Trump’s decree targeting sanctuary cities comes amid concerns that already-existing sanctuary cities and towns were not doing enough to protect their residents under the Obama administration, which oversaw an unprecedented number of deportations and erected family immigrant detention centers that continue to imprison children with their mothers.

January 29, 2017
Immigration Ban, Trump, Resistance

Global Backlash Grows Against Trump’s Immigration Order

In Germany, which has taken in large numbers of people fleeing the Syrian civil war, Chancellor Angela Merkel said the global fight against terrorism was no excuse for the measures and “does not justify putting people of a specific background or faith under general suspicion,” her spokesman said.

January 29, 2017
Trump, Immigration Policy, Fear

President Trump Brings Shame To The U.S. With Policy Based On Fear

This so-called immigration ban is the first major legislative step in Trump’s alienation narrative, the beginning of the “us” versus “them.” We said “never again” after the Holocaust; we would help people fleeing persecution. With one signature, Trump has obliterated one of our country’s most virtuous tenets.

January 29, 2017