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brooklynite's Journal
brooklynite's Journal
August 17, 2021

When Vietnam fell in 1974, nobody tried to blame it on Johnson ramping up troop levels

The person in charge at the time of the fall always takes the hit. Doesn’t matter that Bush started the war in Afghanistan; doesn’t matter that Trump cut a deal that led to the end of it. Voters either won’t care (since US troops will be out) or will attribute the failing to the Biden Administration. That’s political reality.

August 17, 2021

Body of dead Afghan found in landing gear of military jet leaving Kabul airport

Source: Politico

The body of an Afghan so desperate to escape the country hours after Kabul fell to the Taliban was found in the landing gear of an American C-17 transport aircraft hours after it hastily took off from Hamid Karzai International Airport, according to two sources familiar with the matter.

The body in the aircraft’s landing gear has made it temporarily inoperable, the sources said.

The news is the latest disturbing development after chaos erupted at Kabul’s international airport over the weekend following the Taliban’s stunning takeover of Afghanistan’s capital city. Terrifying videos showing Afghans clinging to planes, including the military’s massive C-17 cargo jets, as they attempted to take off dominated news segments across the world Monday. Some videos showed Afghans falling from mid-air from a plane leaving the airport.

A Pentagon spokesperson did not immediately respond to a request for comment. The Washington Post first reported the news.

Read more: https://www.politico.com/news/2021/08/16/dead-afghan-landing-gear-kabul-airport-505400

August 15, 2021

Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar declared Afghanistan's new President

Source: Ummid.com

Mullah Abdul Ghani was declared President of Afghanistan after Ashraf Ghani, former President of the West-supported government, fled the country.

Born in 1968, Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, also called Mullah Baradar Akhund, is the co-founder of the Taliban in Afghanistan.He was the Deputy of Mullah Mohammed Omar.

Baradar was captured in Pakistan by a team of Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) and Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) officers in February 2010 and was released on 24 October 2018 at the request of the United States.

During the first Taliban rule (1996–2001), Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar held a variety of posts. He was the Governor of Herat and Nimruz provinces, and the Corps Commander for western Afghanistan.

Read more: https://ummid.com/news/2021/august/15.08.2021/mullah-abdul-ghani-baradar-declared-afghanistans-new-president.html

August 15, 2021

I'm amazed at how many here now think the collapse of Afghanistan is terrible.

For years, the DU consensus was that having military IN Afghanistan was terrible, that we shouldn't have gone in at all, that the only reason we DID go was the "military-industrial complex", and we had no reason to stay.

It was obvious almost since the start that an American withdrawal would result in a return of the Taliban with all that implied. I can't imagine why anyone demanding that we leave wouldn't have accepted that reality.

August 14, 2021

Statement by President Joe Biden on Afghanistan

Office of the President

Over the past several days, I have been in close contact with my national security team to give them direction on how to protect our interests and values as we end our military mission in Afghanistan.

First, based on the recommendations of our diplomatic, military, and intelligence teams, I have authorized the deployment of approximately 5,000 U.S. troops to make sure we can have an orderly and safe drawdown of U.S. personnel and other allied personnel, and an orderly and safe evacuation of Afghans who helped our troops during our mission and those at special risk from the Taliban advance.

Second, I have ordered our Armed Forces and our Intelligence Community to ensure that we will maintain the capability and the vigilance to address future terrorist threats from Afghanistan.

Third, I have directed the Secretary of State to support President Ghani and other Afghan leaders as they seek to prevent further bloodshed and pursue a political settlement. Secretary Blinken will also engage with key regional stakeholders.

Fourth, we have conveyed to the Taliban representatives in Doha, via our Combatant Commander, that any action on their part on the ground in Afghanistan, that puts U.S. personnel or our mission at risk there, will be met with a swift and strong U.S. military response.

Fifth, I have placed Ambassador Tracey Jacobson in charge of a whole-of-government effort to process, transport, and relocate Afghan Special Immigrant Visa applicants and other Afghan allies. Our hearts go out to the brave Afghan men and women who are now at risk. We are working to evacuate thousands of those who helped our cause and their families.

That is what we are going to do. Now let me be clear about how we got here.

America went to Afghanistan 20 years ago to defeat the forces that attacked this country on September 11th. That mission resulted in the death of Osama bin Laden over a decade ago and the degradation of al Qaeda. And yet, 10 years later, when I became President, a small number of U.S. troops still remained on the ground, in harm’s way, with a looming deadline to withdraw them or go back to open combat.

Over our country’s 20 years at war in Afghanistan, America has sent its finest young men and women, invested nearly $1 trillion dollars, trained over 300,000 Afghan soldiers and police, equipped them with state-of-the-art military equipment, and maintained their air force as part of the longest war in U.S. history. One more year, or five more years, of U.S. military presence would not have made a difference if the Afghan military cannot or will not hold its own country. And an endless American presence in the middle of another country’s civil conflict was not acceptable to me.

When I came to office, I inherited a deal cut by my predecessor—which he invited the Taliban to discuss at Camp David on the eve of 9/11 of 2019—that left the Taliban in the strongest position militarily since 2001 and imposed a May 1, 2021 deadline on U.S. Forces. Shortly before he left office, he also drew U.S. Forces down to a bare minimum of 2,500. Therefore, when I became President, I faced a choice—follow through on the deal, with a brief extension to get our Forces and our allies’ Forces out safely, or ramp up our presence and send more American troops to fight once again in another country’s civil conflict. I was the fourth President to preside over an American troop presence in Afghanistan—two Republicans, two Democrats. I would not, and will not, pass this war onto a fifth.

August 14, 2021

QAnon Almost Destroyed My Relationship. Then My Relationship Saved Me From QAnon.


Since it became clear that the QAnon conspiracy theory was a driving force in the siege of the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, Anastasiia Carrier has been interviewing former QAnon believers and hearing from them, in their own words, how they were drawn into that world and how they got out. Their stories, like Megan’s below, reveal surprising political implications of a movement that is still thriving outside mainstream scrutiny. This is the first article in the series. (Megan and Dave are pseudonyms, granted at their request to avoid online bullying that Megan has experienced in the past after posting about following and quitting QAnon. This interview was done virtually over a series of video calls.)

I was radicalized overnight. I went to bed as a liberal, a die-hard Bernie Sanders supporter, social activist and a feminist. The next morning, I left the bed viewing Donald Trump — a man whom I had utterly despised — as a hero fighting a war against the Deep State. In the ensuing days my fiancé Dave would hardly recognize me, and our relationship would nearly be destroyed.

My conversion happened last June, soon after California expanded the stay-at-home order to control the Covid-19 pandemic. As an extrovert, I did not take the lockdown well. The inability to go out with my friends, work with people and interact with strangers left me feeling trapped and suffocated. At the same time, I was struggling to adjust to sharing the house with Dave after being single for most of my adult life. There were times when I desperately needed to get away for a couple of nights to reconnect with my energy … but where do you go during a deadly pandemic?

Dave wasn’t handling the stay-at-home order well either: Without the ability to take extended weekends away to unwind from his demanding job, he became depressed and increasingly short-tempered. The more he let his anger leak out and at times explode toward me, the more I felt trapped inside the house and desperate for something to change.

It was after a day of his angry outbursts when I discovered QAnon. That night, Dave was asleep and I lay awake buzzing with stress. Tired of staring at the ceiling, I decided to watch the “Fall Cabal” YouTube series a friend of mine had told me about. “It’s really weird. I’d love to get your opinion on it,” she messaged me a few days before along with a link. The 10 episodes wove together a narrative about “The Cabal,” supposedly a secret and satanic pedophile ring run by members of the liberal elite, and Trump’s secret fight to overthrow them. I didn’t sleep at all that night. Instead, I found dozens of articles and videos confirming my new political views. By the morning, I was a true believer.

August 14, 2021

Women in NY Politics Say Cuomo Was Just the Beginning


Last year, New York Senator Julia Salazar was approached by a former New York political staffer whom Salazar described as still politically well-connected in Brooklyn. He wanted to talk to her about some issues, he said. Salazar represents the area where they both live, so she said yes, expecting a chat over coffee.

Instead, the former staffer showed up dressed nicely and suggested a white-tablecloth Italian restaurant. It was unusual, but Salazar tentatively went along with it. She said his comments veered toward her appearance. He touched her hand a few times. He asked if she liked boats, because he had a lot of friends in the Hamptons who had boats, and he could take her out on one. He also said that he had driven by her apartment and noticed she didn’t have a car. Would she like one? he wanted to know. “I can do things for you,” he said a few times. To Salazar, the implication was clear: He was looking for a sugar baby. And he was hoping Salazar would be interested.

When New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced his resignation this week, the woman who will succeed him, Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul, pledged to clean up the “toxic work environment” that had flourished under Cuomo. But I spent the week talking with women in New York politics and government—politicians and staffers, current and former—and they’re not sure it will be so easy. They say the culture—of harassment, of sexism, of bullying, of protecting those in power—goes so much deeper than Cuomo.

“I’ve worked in other industries, including service industries. I’ve worked as a waitress and barista,” Salazar said. “And in all of those workplace environments, I did not find sexism and gender-based harassment and sexual harassment to be as pervasive as it is in politics in Albany.”

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Name: Chris Bastian
Gender: Male
Hometown: Brooklyn, NY
Home country: USA
Member since: 2002
Number of posts: 95,481
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