Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Czer, Jun 30, 2017.
Does this mean he is a rich gay spy who can't drink tequila?
John Bolton Taps Iran Regime Change Advocate
Richard Goldberg joins the National Security Council.
January 7, 2019
John Bolton, national security advisor, is tapping Richard Goldberg of the Foundation for Defense of Democracies (FDD) for a key post.
FDD President Mark Dubowitz confirmed the hire on Twitter late Monday: “Couldn’t think of anyone better than my @FDD colleague @rich_goldberg to join NSC to maximize the maximum pressure campaign against the Islamic Republic of Iran.” The White House has not yet publicly commented.
The story was first reported in Jewish Insider . Goldberg has locked his previously-public Twitter page, following the course taken by other NSC hires, such as Fred Fleitz (who has since departed) and Anthony Ruggiero, formerly of FDD, who swiftly locked their Twitter pages upon ascension to the White House.
Goldberg previously worked for Illinois politicians Mark Kirk and Bruce Rauner. He will join Bolton’s staff as the director for countering Iranian weapons of mass destruction.
Bolton has made clear in recent days that his office’s focus on Iranian proliferation remains undiminished, alleging nothing but bad faith from Tehran. "We have little doubt that Iran’s leadership is still strategically committed to achieving deliverable nuclear weapons,” he said Sunday.
His new hire takes a view of Iran similar to many of Washington’s most committed Iran hawks. He views the regime in Tehran as akin to the Soviet Union—a hub of a global, anti-American counterculture and internally collapsible if Reagan-style pressure is applied, as he advocates.
“Regime change has become a loaded political term,” Goldberg has said in congressional testimony, rejecting comparisons of Iran hawks to those who pushed the U.S. into war in Iraq, even though the two groups have heavy overlaps. “We need to look at more of a Cold War-era policy. What was the Reagan administration’s victory policy, rollback policy toward the Soviets? We definitely wanted behavioral change.”
The Trump administration has insisted U.S. policy is for Iran to change its behavior, and that it is not formally seeking a change in the government itself. That’s contradicted, however, by administration allies such as the president’s attorney, Rudolph Giuliani, who told me last year that the U.S. policy is essentially regime change. “If you listen to John Bolton,” Giuliani told me. “I mean, John Bolton makes it very clear—I guess there’s a miracle that could happen—but it’s very unlikely that these murderers are going to change. So, that probably means regime change.”
Whatever you make of the Goldberg acquisition, Bolton is on a roll.
On travel in the Middle East, Bolton, a master bureaucratic knife-fighter, has apparently stymied President Donald Trump’s earlier orders for a swift withdrawal from Syria and q partial drawdown in Afghanistan; those orders had thrilled skeptics of the need for American primacy. The president is “slowing down” the exodus from Syria, political ally Sen. Lindsey Graham has said.
The turn of events comes as close allies, such as Israel, seek to extract additional concessions: Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is reportedly lobbying for official U.S. recognition of Jerusalem's claim to the Golan Heights, if the United States were to leave Syria soon.
The Syria drawdown was originally agreed to by Trump in a December phone call with Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan, which Bolton listened in on. Bolton’s upcoming meeting with Turkish officials this week is expected to be tense.
For FDD, which has functioned as the administration’s go-to think-tank on Iran, it’s another coup. The Goldberg move to the White House comes as at a time when the organization had been publicly doubting the administration’s course for the first time.
Dubowitz and others at FDD had been publicly lamenting the president’s recent turn. FDD would not comment for this article.
Dubowitz and FDD’s Reuel Marc Gerecht wrote in The Atlantic in December that should Trump pull out of Syria, Tehran might quietly prefer him to his predecessor Barack Obama. “Although [Supreme Leader Ali] Khamenei didn’t say so, it’s a good guess that if given the choice between dealing with American sanctions or America staying in Syria, Iraq, and Afghanistan, he’d take the former,” the duo wrote. “Trump’s withdrawal has severely weakened his own Iran policy, signaling boredom, fickleness, fatigue, and fear.”
The nadir for FDD was doubtless Trump’s statement at the White House in December that Iran “can do what they want” in Syria, shocking much of the foreign policy establishment.
But the revolving door between the West Wing and FDD testifies to the enduring power of cadres.
Curt Mills is the foreign-affairs reporter at the National Interest, where he covers the State Department, National Security Council and the Trump Presidency.
Gavin Newsom’s keeping it all in the family
Jan. 6, 2019
Gavin Newsom will be the first Democrat in more than a century to succeed another Democrat as governor and the succession also marks a big generational transition in California politics.
A long-dominant geriatric quartet from the San Francisco Bay Area – Gov. Jerry Brown, Sens. Dianne Feinstein and Barbara Boxer and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi – has been slowly ceding power to younger political strivers.
Moreover, Newsom is succeeding someone who could be considered his quasi-uncle, since his inauguration continues the decades-long saga of four San Francisco families intertwined by blood, by marriage, by money, by culture and, of course, by politics – the Browns, the Newsoms, the Pelosi's and the Gettys.
The connections date back at least 80 years, to when Jerry Brown’s father, Pat Brown, ran for San Francisco district attorney, losing in 1939 but winning in 1943, with the help of his close friend and Gavin Newsom’s grandfather, businessman William Newsom.
Fast forward two decades. Gov. Pat Brown’s administration developed Squaw Valley for the 1960s winter Olympics and afterward awarded a concession to operate it to William Newsom and his partner, John Pelosi.
One of the Pelosis' sons, Paul, married Nancy D’Alesandro, who went into politics and has now reclaimed speakership of the House of Representatives. Another Pelosi son married William Newsom’s daughter, Barbara. Until they divorced, that made Nancy Pelosi something like an aunt by marriage to Gavin Newsom (Nancy Pelosi’s brother-in-law was Gavin Newsom’s uncle).
The Squaw Valley concession was controversial at the time and created something of a rupture between the two old friends.
William Newsom wanted to make significant improvements to the ski complex, including a convention center, but Brown’s Department of Parks and Recreation balked. Newsom and his son, an attorney also named William, held a series of contentious meetings with officials over the issue.
An eight-page memo about those 1966 meetings from the department’s director, Fred Jones, buried in the Pat Brown archives, describes the Newsoms as being embittered and the senior Newsom threatening to “hurt the governor politically” as Brown ran for a third term that year against Ronald Reagan.
Pat Brown’s bid for a third term failed, and the Reagan administration later bought out the Newsom concession. But the Brown-Newsom connection continued as Brown’s son, Jerry, reclaimed the governorship in 1974. He appointed the younger William Newsom, a personal friend and Gavin’s father, to a Placer County judgeship in 1975 and three years later to the state Court of Appeal.
Justice Newsom, who died a few weeks ago, had been an attorney for oil magnate J. Paul Getty, most famously delivering $3 million to Italian kidnapers of Getty’s grandson in 1973. While serving on the appellate bench in the 1980s, he helped Getty’s son, Gordon, secure a change in state trust law that allowed him to claim his share of a multi-heir trust.
After Newsom retired from the bench in 1995, he became administrator of Gordon Getty’s own trust, telling one interviewer, “I make my living working for Gordon Getty.” The trust provided seed money for the PlumpJack chain of restaurants and wine shops that Newson’s son, Gavin, and Gordon Getty’s son, Billy, developed, the first being in a Squaw Valley hotel.
Gavin Newsom had been informally adopted by the Gettys after his parents divorced, returning a similar favor that the Newsom family had done for a young Gordon Getty many years earlier. Newsom’s PlumpJack business (named for an opera that Gordon Getty wrote) led to a career in San Francisco politics, a stint as mayor, the lieutenant governorship and now to the governorship, succeeding his father’s old friend.
He’s keeping it all in the extended family.
I just have a glass stare for people who are excited about the democrats, stupid
Y’all ready for this shit? The authoritarian is literally inventing a reichtag fire that doesn’t exist. Big Gubmint conservative types? Nowhere to be seen.
you need to find a job in mainland china and i'll live in your attic or basement, either is fine
Already here in mainland China on the island of taiwan, just move here
sell me on it Grandy
we've been giving serious consideration to moving (or at least traveling to potential destinations this year)
I will BigTime take you on an unforgettable vacation here in Taiwan, whether you want to do it entirely on the cheap or spend bigger.
Good food, friendly people, awesome public transit, cheap healthcare, island vibes. Come On Down
I was in Taiwan a few months back for work. Grand's explanation sounds about right. My big take-aways were: Friendly as fuck. Chill.
I'm curious about Taiwan. Nice temperatures, but are the humid summers bearable? Are there plenty of natural beach fronts, or is it more rocky?
If you've travelled Asia, how would you say Taiwan differs from other developed economies there?
Taiwan Zek Times
ok so that's the plan
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