Lord Have Mercy

This is not good.

One of the many reasons I voted for Trump was because he saw the folly of Neoconservatism and the folly of endless war. Running in a Republican primary, he did the unthinkable and called out the last Republican president (George W Bush) for removing Saddam Hussein. If nothing else, he saw that the instability that was unleashed by Saddam’s removal led to the destabilization of Europe.

And now –this.

I’m hoping (praying actually, and fervently) that yesterday’s Tomahawk missile launch was a “one-off” and that there was no collateral damage. Or that there will be no further such actions (to say nothing of military escalation on our part). I especially hope that no Russians military assets were harmed. According to reliable sources, the “deconfliction protocols” that the US and Russia have established to avert accidental maneuvers worked splendidly. The US told the Russians via a secure line to “get out of the way” and they did.

It’s possible that this was all part of a grand scheme worked out ahead of time with Putin. I could see a scenario in which the US is drawn in to Syria and a condominium of sorts is worked out with Moscow. This is not far-fetched. One of the players in this region is Iran and even though the Sunni world despises the Persians and wants nothing more than to remove their influence from Syria and Lebanon, the fact remains that the US worked out a treaty with Iran that was very favorable to Tehran. This was astounding to the Arabs and the Israelis and most everybody else for that matter. Thanks to Russia, Tehran is the other native regional hegemon in that area of the world (the other being Israel).

Under this scenario, Damascus would be ruled by Assad (or his successor) with Russia as its guarantor while the western half of the country is ruled by Assad’s rivals (with America being the guarantor). Under this scenario, the tens of thousands of Syrian refugees currently living elsewhere could be repatriated. This would solve the extreme vetting and so-called Muslim ban that Trump wants in place for the US in order to solve the refugee influx.

Essentially, what we are talking about is kabuki theater on a grand scale. Just like the “news” that Steve Bannon’s star was falling just as Jared Kushner’s was rising. Bannon we are told was “kicked off” the National Security Council the other day. Supposedly, it was under Kushner’s doleful influence that Trump green-lighted the Tomahawk strike. What is not reported is that Bannon showed up for a meeting of this Council yesterday.

Still, I am in no way happy. If I had wanted to vote for a warmonger, I would have voted for Hillary Clinton. I expected better from Trump. My guess (hope, actually) is that he is not a militarist but a businessman at heart and that he resisted the blandishments of the Deep State as long as he could. If this is correct, then he understands fundamentally that the Deep State will always find a way to bounce back one way or the other.
Still, the Deep State is not invulnerable; they have to make do with exterior circumstances, not all of which are under their control. Trump’s win was the ultimate wild card and on his watch, they’ll have to take his unpredictability into consideration.

Trump realizes this of course; he also realizes that they can take him out if the conditions are right. It’s somewhat of a Mexican Standoff. Trump is better than Hillary in this regard (or McCain, Romney, Rubio, or Cruz). I think of this as the Reluctant Surgeon scenario, with Trump being the Surgeon, rather than the Savage Butcher one (insert Dem/Rep Warmonger here).

To be sure, there are domestic benefits to Trump’s move. Let’s just go ahead and consult Macchiavelli here. For one thing, he has immediately pacified the Neocon/Neolib wing of the Establishment. I imagine he’ll get repeal of Obamacare and tax cuts through the Congress in fairly short order. It goes without saying that Neil Gorsuch will be voted onto the Supreme Court later today. (I was going to wright about Gorsuch and the suicidally stupid actions of the Democrats in the Senate but that’s been put aside for now.) And of course the nonsense of Russian collusion will fritter away in no time. And this is especially delicious: while the Russian Hacking Narrative is blown away to Trump’s benefit, the Susan Rice/Obamagate Narrative continues to metastasize (to the Dem’s detriment).

Those are the political upsides and they will redound to Trump’s benefit. Other metrics, not related to Syria likewise are helping Trump. Illegal immigration is down. Some sanctuary cities are caving. Manufacturing jobs are rebounding as are home sales. Together with actions in Syria, his popularity will skyrocket. But there is danger: a significant percentage of his base voted for him precisely because he spoke loudly and forcefully against foreign intervention. He can’t afford to alienate them and if yesterday’s action was a harbinger of things to come, he’ll lose them permanently. That is a significant chunk of his coalition that he can’t afford to lose.

As for myself, I voted for Trump for a host of reasons. Non-interventionism was only one of them. I’ll continue to support him fully realizing that politics is a messy business and that sometimes you have to make sacrifices on principle for the greater good. For me, the greater good is securing America’s borders, protecting our Second Amendment rights, negotiating better trade deals, improving the economy, selecting solid judges to the various Circuits and the Supreme Court and cutting taxes. These are not small things. If Trump succeeds in these other venues, which is nothing short than the restoration of American sovereignty, then the defenestration of Assad is a small (albeit regrettable) price to pay.

Still, I’m not happy by this latest intervention. Not in the least. It’s not a good thing and we better hope that the situation in Syria calms down real soon. Otherwise the refugee crisis could escalate and then Trump will be right where Obama was. That’s just on the refugee side of things. If he’s drawn into a broader war, he runs the very real risk of breaking his Administration on the very same shoals that destroyed Bush the Younger’s.

I hope he’s thought this through.

About GShep


  1. Michael Bauman says

    It was the children dying George. That got to Trump on a visceral level. I don’t think politics had a thing to do with it. He wanted to revenge the babies. I can not imagine any other President in my lifetime who would have shown that honesty.

    He was told that Assad did it and from where and he struck back.

    For good or for ill Trump is not far removed from his human emotions like politicians are.

    He is reactive. Not necessarily a good thing when you have a military force you command.

    Considering the obvious depth of feeling the gas attack created in him, his response was restrained.

    Don’t read too much into it just yet.

    • George Michalopulos says

      Michael, I thought so too, but I just read where Sen John McCain made a secret trip to Syria last week. The only thing I can conclude is that this was all carefully planned out almost to the last detail.

      My only hope is that Trump knew that “they” were “getting to him” so he had to act fast but with minimal damage. This has bought him some time. Hopefully, he won’t pull a Wilson and run as an isolationist but then be dragged into war. That’s Michael Savage’s real fear. You can read his sobering analysis in the first comment above.

      Anyway, I wonder how all the Proglibs are reacting. Are they happy now? If so, I imagine they’ll be ecstatic when more Christians are killed in the Middle East.

      • My only hope is that Trump knew that “they” were “getting to him” so he had to act fast but with minimal damage.

        Honestly, I’m starting to question whether Trump is principled enough to even know that. If he’s taking orders from Ivanka and Kuchner, that isn’t a good thing. Is anyone surprised that Tillerson, a big oil guy, is all excited to enable the Saudis to fulfill their dream to run a pipeline through Syria?

        I trust Trump in a vacuum, but I don’t trust many of the people around him, and I don’t trust that Trump is capable of holding his position in the face of strong opposition from hawks. He is too willing to make a deal. He’ll negotiate anything, and it concerns me.

        The Trump I’m seeing today is not the Trump I saw in the campaign, or who I voted for.

    • Pat Reardon says

      It was the children dying George. That got to Trump on a visceral level. I don’t think politics had a thing to do with it. He wanted to revenge the babies. I can not imagine any other President in my lifetime who would have shown that honesty.

      That was my take on the thing, too.

      His reference to the Syrian child as “child of God” was also telling.

      My respect for President Trump grew considerably this week.

  2. George,

    My initial reaction was the same as yours – sinking feeling in my stomach. However, stepping back, I doubt that the Russians are actually upset and probably understand the message sent.

    Putin is firmly in charge in Russia. Trump is now firmly in charge in Washington. This buys him cred, as you observed, with the warhawks of the Republican Party. As Jimmie Hoffa used to say, “At the end of the day, there’s only what has been gained and what has been lost. You can make the rest of it up yourselves.”

    He gave notice, launched some tomahawks, turned a military infrastructure in to rubble and reaped a reward for the cost of the missiles – more Republican warhawk support. He may have actually though it through in that detail, hard to say.

    Regardless, the Russians are grownups and Putin has already said he is not married to the Assad regime in Syria. It can be worked out. There are bigger fish to fry. Assad may remain in power and the whole thing may blow over and Trump might agree in the future with the Russians to play the Muslims against each other, Sunni v. Shiite, Sunni v. Sunni, etc., rather than let them or the progressives or neo-cons play us.

    We can’t see what’s behind the curtain, we can only read the tea leaves.

  3. George Michalopulos says
    • To me, the most logical explanation of what happened is that the Syrian air force unwittingly hit a cache of chemical weapons held for use against the Syrian army by ISIS or some other Islamic rebel force.

      I say this because I do not think that either the Russians or Assad are particularly sadistic and get off on gassing children. ISIS might be that loathsome but I doubt it. Neither Assad nor Russia had any motivation to use chemical weapons since they were winning against the rebels.

      Now, that said, the question is what, if anything, should Trump have done about it. If it was not orchestrated with Russia, Trump’s attack on Syria was a serious mistake. It makes him look like he’s playable by the heartstrings even if America has no dog in the underlying conflict.

      Of course, one mistake is not the end of the world. He will make many more I’m sure. Hopefully they will not be too costly in terms of loss of life. That is the hand a leader is dealt.

    • I have always been a fan of Michael Savage, his show was born on local San Francisco radio. Great to watch blow it up nationally. George any country that drops nerve agent gas on anyone must be sent a message, or it will continue. Assad tested Obama, nothing happened, and Putin did not care. Now Assad knowing Putin could care less how he kills, thought he’d test Trump, and Trump responded. That’s the difference between a former KGB agent and a family oriented businessman.

      No war, just bomb. Don’t compare shooting missiles, George, at a war torn country(Syria) in the middle of a civil war, with completely invading a country that was in relative peace(Iraq).

      It’s really not so complicated as everyone here and on most media channels want us to believe. Simple really, any country that releases nerve agents should be bombed, period! Not invaded, bombed, do it again and be bombed even more than the first time, until killing with nerve gases won’t be worth it.

      Oh and if Putin or any other heartless leader doesn’t like it, they can kiss our big red, white, and blue, ass!

  4. Nate Trost says

    George Michalopulos wrote
    I hope he’s thought this through.

    Eventually George Michalopulos will come to realize the dread secret: Trump never thinks anything through.

    • George Michalopulos says

      You may be right. However, you may be wrong.

      So far, this missile attack has done done several good things for him, including 1) neutralizing the Left, 2) sent a loud and clear message to North Korea, and 3) solidified the Republican Party behind him.

      Think of it: what are the Dems going to say now? They’ve been pining for war with Russia because they “stole” the election. Trump was Putin’s puppet. Can they say that now? Now that we’ve all got a taste of war are the Dems really up for it?

  5. https://en.wikisource.org/wiki/Roosevelt%27s_Fireside_Chat,_27_May_1941

    I was writing something on the TradOx FB page and had occasion to use the term “fireside chat”. That prompted me to look back at those soothing talks given by FDR during very troubled times which, alas, have returned.

    It is vital that Orthodox Christians stay in contact and support each other in these times, as best we can, through whatever means that are available to us. I assume that there will be interference with communications at some points along the way. I am praying that God has seen fit to attempt the redemption of America before lining up the finale. But who can say?

    God has given us free will and seems committed to not revoking it. This means that to some degree, the future of America, whether it will go with God, or not, is up to us here in America.

    Right here. Right now.

    “Now therefore fear the Lord, and serve him in sincerity and in truth: and put away the gods which your fathers served on the other side of the flood, and in Egypt; and serve ye the Lord. And if it seem evil unto you to serve the Lord, choose you this day whom ye will serve; whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell: but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.” – Joshua 24:14-15

    It seems to be sinking in to all interested parties that the Syria thing was a sort of demarcation of boundaries between the US and Russia and a reflection on how much consideration is given to Arab governments, all precisely at the time that Trump was meeting with the President of China, to whom he personally delivered the news of the American strikes.


    Perhaps we can relax now for awhile. It seems that neither the United States nor Russia have any intention of going to war with each other. It is clear that America feels free to strike third countries in response to their proliferation of wmd such as chemical and nuclear weapons. And this message cannot be lost on China.

    These are the times that try men’s souls.

  6. A very unfortunate development. I was infuriated by it, actually. Now Trump is providing cover fire for ISIS to invade Homs. And frankly, I don’t believe the gas attack even happened, or at least it wasn’t what it’s being shown to be. It was too perfect, too Hollywood, and it doesn’t make sense.

    Many are arguing that this was a good way for Trump to establish himself on the world stage, or put to rest all the Russia talk. Maybe so, but I don’t want a president who uses bombs to fix his political problems.

    If I wanted a president who was going to bomb Syria, I would have voted for Hillary.

    • Gail Sheppard says

      Ever seen a gas attack, Ages? Just wondering on what basis you have determined that the incident didn’t happen. Specifically, what’s “too perfect” for you? Be descriptive. If you’re going to minimize and dismiss something like this, be prepared to explain yourself.

      And if you don’t have the stomach to look at this in its entirety, let me know, because it will tell me you don’t have a right to an opinion.


      • There is no evidence Assad did it, aside from US government claims. The White Helmets are ISIS agents and the “journalists” taking the video are all suspect.


        It’s not like nobody has ever staged a false flag before.

        What about the pictures of the people killed by US missiles? What about the pictures of little kids’ ripped-off arms and legs in Sweden? Nobody is showing those pictures.

      • Gail,

        What we know is there was a bombing run, one among countless others. What no one can say with any certainty is where the gas came from. I have no facts to back it up (and neither does anyone else), but if I was has to place a wager it would be that Assad and his army were not responsible for the gas. He is winning, albeit slowly, on every front. The Russian support behind him is stronger and more assertive than ever. The United States was on course to take a hands-off approach. In short, he has no motivation whatsoever.

        On the other hand, who does have strong motivations to turn the world further against the Assad regime and weaken the support he enjoys from Russia?. There are all-too-many, both in the immediate area and in the West, both terrorists and recognized governments.

        Chemical attacks, as well as all attacks, are horrifying, killing innocents and children. Assad has killed many innocents. There is no denying that, and I do not defend him as somehow being a good man. But neither he nor his major supporter had anything to gain by the gassing deaths of a few extra people that could just as easily have been accomplished by conventional means.

        The question we should be asking is: Who gains? And while the answer could be any number of parties, Assad is not among them. Could he simply be mad? It is possible, but I would not put any money on that wager.

        • Others have raised this possibility and I cannot entirely discount it. The Israelis may want Assad gone so bad that they are manufacturing “facts on the ground” to support a narrative that will dispose of him. Mossad, after all, is over there, in close proximity and they are not naive or badly informed. And, like all intelligence agencies, they are absolutely ruthless.

          I’m still going with the notion that it was probably Syrian planes that bombed an ISIS or al-Nusra chemical cache, if there were in fact chemical casualties, that is. But Mossad could have had a hand in staging a false flag. They’re not above it.

          Regardless, we can all agree that the evil one is hard at work in our little world.

  7. Joseph Lipper says

    George, the first world leader to publicly praise the US attack on Syria was Benjamin Neyanyahu:

    “In both word and action, President Trump sent a strong and clear message today that the use and spread of chemical weapons will not be tolerated.”

    Of course, the main benificiary of the US attack on Syria was the nation-state of Israel who are essentially at war with Syria. It is also understood that the Israelis have their own chemical weapons program. One does have to wonder if this was a set-up. Assad certainly believes so.

  8. Robert Manner says

    The gassed and suffocated children cry out for justice from the grave. Is it really true that Mr. Putin, the ally of Assad, could not prevent Assad from gassing his own citizens?

    • George Michalopulos says

      Mr Manner, be very careful here. We were told by no less than Susan Rice in January (Obama’s NSC advisor) that Assad had given up all his WMD.

      And thus we peel off another layer of the onion, that being the credibility of Susan Rice.

    • Implying that even happened. The UK ambassador to Syria doesn’t buy it.


    • Peter Millman says

      Mr. Manners,
      All killing is wrong and highly immoral. Would Jesus gas people to death or blow them to smithereens? Neither. He said to love our enemies and do good to those who would harm us. That is the nonviolent gospel of love that our Savior Jesus Christ preached.

      • Christ was not a pacifist. To assert otherwise is to accept the heresy of Marcionism, which you should research. The Church has always respected the use of violence in self-defense and the defense of others. Pacifism is a choice when the greater good might be served by martyrdom. But it is not mandatory and neither is martyrdom. Even Christ permitted Himself to escape at times when the crowds wanted to stone Him and it was not His time.

        Recall that in the Gospel of St. Luke, after the Mystical Supper, Christ told His Apostles to go and buy swords:

        “And he said unto them, When I sent you without purse, and scrip, and shoes, lacked ye any thing? And they said, Nothing. Then said he unto them, But now, he that hath a purse, let him take it, and likewise his scrip: and he that hath no sword, let him sell his garment, and buy one. For I say unto you, that this that is written must yet be accomplished in me, And he was reckoned among the transgressors: for the things concerning me have an end. And they said, Lord, behold, here are two swords. And he said unto them, ‘It is enough.’.” – Gospel of St. Luke 22:35-38

        The context is clear. He was sending them out as sheep among wolves (the Gentiles) and wanted them to be able to protect themselves. Previously, among the Jews, they had not needed weapons because the Jews had been more civilized by God and His law.

        If you’re asking, “Who would Christ bomb?” then I submit to you He would bomb Moab and Amalek. God in the Old Testament ordered the extermination of Moab and of Amalek. Christ is God, the Yahweh of the Old Testament.

        If He is not, why do we care what He said or did?

      • Billy Jack Sunday says

        Turn the other cheek . . . into a spinning backfist!!

  9. Joseph Lipper says

    Christian Zionists in the U.S. usually take a moralistic political stand against both abortion and gay marriage. Ironically, the ideology of Zionism which they support, in fact advocates the actual bloody abortion of Palestinians from their homeland: men, women, children, and babies included.

    Not only that, but what Christian Zionists in the U.S. are advocating, it basically amounts to a homosexual union between the nation-state of Israel and the U.S.

    In that evil union, guess who is the bottom? How deep is the deep-state of the U.S. of A?

    • Joseph Lipper says

      Many in Israel cheer U.S. attack on Syria as a welcome sign of a more assertive key ally:


      Without a doubt, the nation-state of Israel is behind the U.S. attack on Syria.

    • George Michalopulos says

      One has to wonder.

      • Gail Sheppard says

        I’m wondering why a man would go way out on a limb and claim that Trump had the hand of God on him and then question it a few months later. What good are your beliefs if you abandoned them at the first trial?

        • George Michalopulos says

          Gail, I have not abandoned Trump. I am heartily disappointed however. The auguries don’t look good and I feel that the Kushner/globalist wing has gained an ascendancy for the moment over the Bannon/nationalist wing. That’s all.

          I plan to write more about this after Easter. For now I can say that Trump has had his back against the wall ever since he won the primary. Nothing was a sure deal for him, not the nomination, not keeping the nomination, not the election for that matter. Even when he won there were at least three different attempts to derail his inauguration. And then once he was safely in place, there were many attempts from many different avenues to derail him and his agenda. Even talk of impeachment and assassination.

          With each day of course he’s gotten more secure in his position and with the passage of Neil Gorsuch, I’d say his agenda is about 75% in the clear. But nation-building: I’m sorry that’s bridge too far. We put our heart and souls into Iraq and it’s now a colony of Iran (and that’s the best-case scenario).

          Now, I want to cover my bases here. I have no problem whatsoever with American special forces going into Syria and laying waste to ISIS. None at all. One thousand, 3,000 or even a division if that’s what’s needed. That’s not a deviation from Trump’s stated promises but a fulfillment of them. I just hope that any such military actions can be worked around or with the Russians. And I hope that regime change when and if it becomes necessary takes place under the right circumstances and without any of the hallucinatory neoconservative nonsense brought to us by the Trotskyites over at The Weekly Standard.

          As long as all this is done in tandem with Trump’s stated domestic agenda –the Wall, better trade deals, repeal of Obamacare, etc.–then I’m totally kopacetic with it. If however the domestic agenda becomes derailed, then all bets are off.

          Anyway, I plan on fleshing this out after Easter. In the meantime, have a blessed Holy Week. That goes for all y’all!

          • George Michalopulos says

            Gail, after a good night’s sleep, I’ve decided to flesh out my answer to your question more fully.

            I did indeed write that I believed God’s hand was upon Mr Trump during the whole nomination-election-inauguration process. I believed it then and still believe it today. However I also believe in freewill.

            Let me explain: in history, the Lord has placed His hand on different people at different times for different reasons. These men (and a few women) were God’s “anointed” at one time or another, specifically tasked for carrying out God’s will. That doesn’t mean that they couldn’t reject His will or step out of their necessary bounds.

            Think of Moses who took credit for a miracle he didn’t perform. He was forbidden from going into the Promised Land. Both Michael and Satan had to contend for his soul after his death. Likewise King Saul of Israel: he was God’s chosen warrior, winning many battles and securing Israel’s nationhood. Yet when he engaged in necromancy, he did that which was abominable and God’s grace departed from him. On the other hand, we can think of men who did evil things but repented of them. Men like King Manasseh II of Judah who performed horrific pagan rites. His prayer of repentance is sung in the Orthodox Church during Great Lent.

            It’s a mixed bag, being God’s anointed. Mixed because we have freewill and we can never completely escape our fallen nature. We can always listen to the blandishments of flatterers and seducers.

            That’s the trap that I fear Trump may have fallen into. In listening to his family (Jared Kushner) he is ignoring his pro-America mandate. Just this morning I found out that he’s pushed K T McFarland out of the NSC and given her a nothingburger posting as Ambassador to Singapore. KT is a real national security stalwart going all the way back to the Nixon and Reagan administrations; a realist and not a reflexive Russophobe.

            This is what I meant last night when I wrote “the auguries don’t look good”. I’m afraid that Trump is on the Neocon/Globalist precipice. He can still pull back and send these evil financiers packing but as one of them is his beloved son-in-law I’m not too optimistic.

            I realize that Obama had his chance to bring the Wall Street criminals to heel but he made the calculated decision to let them skate. For his efforts, he was allowed to serve two terms and not be assassinated but Obama was never an America-firster but a globalist with Mohammedan sympathies who didn’t really give a rat’s ass for America or its historical foundations.

            I expected more from Trump and thus I continue to pray that he comes to his senses and throws these evildoers to the curb.

    • Peter Millman says

      Hi Joseph,
      Trump, like all of the political establishment is a flunky for the Likud Party in Israel We Christians should be followers of Christ, not Judaism. Christianity is as different from Judaism as night is from day.

      My friend, it disgusts me to see Christian zionists supporting the racist, apartheid, ethnic cleansing state of Israel over their Christian brothers and sisters. Between the Palestinian Orthodox Christians and the Israelis, who do the Christian ziorats support? They support the Israelis. Between the Lebanese Christians and the Israelis, who do the Christian ziorats support? They support the Israelis. This is stupid, benighted, dimwitted hypocrisy. No true disciple of our Lord Jesus Christ can support the Zionist colonial experiment.

      As a show of support for my Palestinian Orthodox Christian brothers and sisters, I wear a Palestinian kufiyah around my neck to Church every Sunday along with a Free Palestine wrist band. My friend, Judaism believes in lex talionis (an eye for an eye), we Christians are supposed to live by the Sermon on the Mount where Christ preached nonviolent love for friends and enemies. This is one of the reasons that Judaism is so insidious; in fact, there is no such thing as JudeoChristianity. The United States is Israel’s bitch; that’s why I believe we are under God’s judgment.
      Also, it is not the responsibility of the US to be the world’s policeman. That is the height of self righteousness, arrogance, and hubris. No country is history has killed more people than the US in our wars of aggressions and transgressions. Remember, our Lord said, ” Blessed are peacemakers;” not blessed are the self righteous, hypocritical warmongers.

      By the way, Trump is so mentally unstable, who knows what he will do next? I voted for the bum as the lesser of two evils, but it makes me shudder to think such an incompetent nincompoop controls the US nuclear codes. He makes the world more dangerous because of his narcissistic personality disorder.

      • Bad as this direction is, he’s still better than Hillary. If Hillary was president, we would already be in WW3 and the Internet would probably be shut down too.

        • Peter Millman says

          Yes, Trump is still better than Hillary. That woman just won’t go away. She’s writing a book about the recent presidential campaign, and how misogyny played a role in her defeat which is ridiculous. She derived her political power solely from the fact she was Bill Clinton’s wife. Perhaps, Americans resented that along with all her scandals and myriads of character defects.

          • George Michalopulos says

            Agreed. If Hillary had won, we’d have some blue-haired, flesh-pierced lesbian as Chairman of the Joint Chiefs by now and kids in school would have been reading Mao’s Little Red Book. Instead of our saying the hearing the Gospels in church we’d be subjected to the writings of Saul Alinsky.

            Sigh. How far we’ve fallen.

      • “Christianity is as different from Judaism as night is from day.”

        That’s insane. Christ said that He did not come to abolish the Law of Moses, but to fulfill it. Orthodox Christianity is true and, in general, any Judeo-Christian witness is superior to Islam in any form. Roman Catholicism, of course is deeply defective and that is why you see photos of Pope Francis in mosques and kissing the Qur’an, with our own heresiarch, Bartholomew, not far behind him.

        I’m not fond of “Christian Zionism” or any Zionism, really. Nonetheless, it is a fact that in Orthodox eschatology as witnessed by the visions of Orthodox noetic fathers over the ages that in the eschaton Christ will return and will defend the faithful and a remnant of believing, converted Jews against the forces of the antichrist in the last days. So, evidently, Israel may be there for a reason. Hard to say.

        At this point, as St. Paul wrote, we see only “as if through a glass and darkly”.

        • George Michalopulos says

          True enough Misha but what we have experienced since the fall of the Second Temple in AD 70 is not “Judaism” (or more properly “Yahwism”) but “Rabbinicism”. Later to be called “Talmudism”.

          This is not the Judaism of the Prophets or even the Mosaic Law but a legalistic school of thought that eschews universalist principles in favor of situational ethics. In this light, the Triune God of the Old Testament has been reduced to a tribalist deity with no concern for those who are not His chosen. He cannot be otherwise in this scenario.

          In other words, we are talking about a reversion to the henotheism that obtained before the prophetic ministry of Jonah.

          • Yes, exactly right, George. Judaism is a false religion, no doubt. Judaism is essentially rabbinic Judaism. One cannot possibly affirm Judaism and Christianity at the same time. There are Messianic Jews who try, but their natural place would be in the Orthodox Church. St. Paul preached first in the synagogues. The Judaism, Hebraism, Yahwism or whatever you want to call it of the day was not good enough for the Hebrews in the estimation of the Apostle Paul. The Apostles Peter and James agreed. That is what the Apostolic Council in Jerusalem was about – Judaizing. The question was settled. St. Peter even had a dream from God which revealed to him that kashrut was abolished, even for Jews.

            The Orthodox Church is the New Israel and it is only our Yahwism which is the Truth, since Christ is God and He is the Way, the Truth and the Life.

            • Michael Bauman says

              “Behold O Israel, the Lord our God is one…”

              There cannot be two. Either Jesus is Incarnate Lord and Savior or we must still cry out for His coming.

              Current Judiasm does not seem to do either.

              The fullness of the Truth is only in the Orthodox Church but we must take care not to become Pharisees. Always a temptation.

            • It would probably be more accurate to say that Judaism falsified itself in rejecting Christ. Prior to Christ, the Hebrews had been prepared and led by God. The Northern Kingdom fell first. Thus Christ was a Judean. Judean and Jew are the same word in Hebrew, Aramaic and Koine Greek. But Christ overthrew Rabbinic Judaism in His Person. He fulfilled the Law of Moses by being the Son of God.

        • We Orthodox Christians and Orthodox Christianity are true Judaism. A portion of Israel rejected Jesus as the Messiah. In so doing, they cut themselves out of Israel. They eventually formed a religion that, while retaining much of the original revelation of God to the patriarchs and prophets, is no longer the same faith of the patriarchs and prophets because they have rejected Christ.

          This is very clear in the writings of the New Testament.

  10. Sure Trump will get a “bump” from all the “establishmentcrats” the “neo-lib-cons” with this strike and probably in the back of his mind it will quell the african beehive buzzing around the “Russian meddling and interference” allegations leveled by all the Obama apparatchiks in the Intel and who now is going to call for a “special prosecutor” anymore (?) probably not even Maxine Watters Nancy will tell her to shut up. You are right George this could be a “Machiavellian” kind of deal here where the neocon globalists will cut Trump some slack and let him go forth with some other agenda items without all the negative press but they will already consider him to be on board with “regime change” in Syria. Destabilization of Middle East means more persecution of Christians. That ultimately is what the globalists want. We see all that with the “Arab Spring” and emergence of ISIS persecutions of Christians however unfortunately US policy while supposedly opposing ISIS is actually supportive of ISIL by way of opposing the lawful government of Syria. ISIL includes a wider region of Christian persecution, the “Levant” which besides Iraq and Syria other Islamic nations in Middle East that harbor Islamic fundamentalists that persecute Christians. I was just coming back from service today Feast Day of the Annunciation and listening to Michael Savage on car radio and while always having lots of reservations about this guy he was spot on, Assad’s Syrian domestic rebel enemies they are .. “moderate” .. Islamic terrorists that would kill Jews and Christians alike and of course chemical weapons are always wrong but it was not Sarin however some other thing and anyone could of had it and used it and do false flag.

    Assad is not a brain dead idiot with an IQ of 50. He would not do this kind of attack for all the syndicated press of the world to televise and have footage of, seriously, he is not that stupid. No need. He was winning that battle. Tucker Carlson I respect also. On FOX he is legit, honest, asks the questions that need to be asked. Trump, should go on his show.

    • George Michalopulos says

      It’s amazing how in the space of 24 hours, the Corporate Media has gotten on board the Trump Train, isn’t it?

      It may be more Macchiavellian than we know. Last week, before the gas attack, the Russians openly stated that they weren’t “married to Assad”, thereby signaling that it may be time for him to step down and replaced by a provisional govt made up of most secular factions. If this scenario is true, what the Russians want are are at least two things:

      1. their military bases in Latakya and Tarsus,
      2. the stoppage of the proposed pipeline from Qatar to the Mediterranean.

      Even in this scenario they hold important trump cards against the Turks and the Neocons: the ability at any moment to declare an autonomous Kurdistan.

      My head is spinning when you consider this ball out of left field: yesterday the Russians agreed to recognize West Jerusalem as the capital of Israel (with East Jerusalem being the capital of a proposed Palestinian state). This is huge. The US, which is in the grips of a powerful zionist lobby hasn’t even proposed this. I can’t figure out why the CM hasn’t made a big deal of this.

      • Huge is our End Times. Saints of the past would be licking their chops to be with us now when the real actual 666 will show up. Maybe Jerusalem should just be “unincorporated” just The Body of Christ. You know the Old Testament prophecy of Jeremiah he spoke of ” a time ” and ” a time ” and “a half” with each “time” understood by the Church Fathers as a thousand years and the half then 5 centuries. So go back to Jeremiah we are here at that end time he was 500 BC writing end time prophesy. We are not Judaic Christian Zionists we are just Orthodox and the Scripture of Prophet Jeremiah is verified by the Septuagint, 70 translations from 70 different places all the same.

        So we are good. No anti christ for now. He needs his third Jewish Temple and it ain’t happen’n yet. Also the Red Heffer work in progress. Gorsuch will do, liberal Protestant intellectual, very clear legal thought, simple, but stuff you would not figure out yourself. He knows stuff he will school Kagan and Sotomeyor and all the rest of them.

      • Joseph Lipper says

        It’s impressive that once again, Russia is showing real leadership in an approach to peace in the Middle East. A divided Jerusalem and as a capital of a two state Israel/Palestine sounds brilliant, even though the Zionists will never go for it. Russia and China are both showing a commitment to a two-state solution in Palestine

        • George Michalopulos says

          Really, a two-state solution would be the most equitable. Of course both sides want a one-state solution: the Jews because they think that they can make things intolerable for the Arabs enough for them to leave and the Arabs because they think that they can withstand the intolerance and out-breed the Jews.

          • I was just watching on History Channel documentary about the Shroud.

            Main thing here, on that shroud, there is no particulate. It was not painted
            with any kind of media, that is a scientific proven. So the only source of the
            image is some kind of burn mark, radiation likely. The imprinted image of
            Christ on the fabric is superficial. Encoded into that superficial only top layer
            is information that only 21 first century technology can encode. Decode.

            So we know Lord left us some evidence of Himself. And i consider my astrological
            birth chart better than satan thats all i want it to be.

          • A two state solution? What do you think the Muslim Palestinian Authority will do to the Palestinian Christians once they get that kind of power? What do Muslims do to Christians when they get that kind of power? I have had many Muslim friends but seriously we all know what happens when Muslims are in control. I’m part Armenian so I admit that this distrust is in my DNA.

            • George Michalopulos says

              Magda, I understand you. Believe me, I understand you.

              Having said that, the Assads are Moslem but they protect Christians and other minorities. As did Saddam Hussein for that matter.

              • interesting……here is where those conspiracy theories start running through my head.

  11. Peter A. Papoutsis says

    This could be, and very likely is, a plan or “understanding” between Trump and Putin. In the grand geo-political scheme of things it makes sense, but the Syria and the Syrians are getting screwed.


    • I agree. I can understand the political hay that this gives Trump, but I didn’t vote for someone who I believed was going to use missiles to help his political posture.

    • Trump is surrounding himself with the worst possible people. His border security pick is getting big praise from Jeh Johnson.

      The globalists found that the stick approach wasn’t working, so now they’re trying the carrot. Shower Trump with praise for going along with the globalist program, and apparently he’ll eat it up.

    • George Michalopulos says

      Frankly, Fr, I’m beginning to think that there is a fundamental hatred of Orthodoxy buried deep in the American Protestant soul and that it matters not who is the President. They will always think: “Orthodox/goofy hats = must be evil”.

      I hope I’m wrong.

      Think of it: St Clinton bombed Serbia on Orthodox Easter. Cyprus still remains divided. The EU/US is destroying Greece. They want to fracture Russia into little pieces so they can continue what the Harvard Boys started back in the 90s but what Putin put a stop to.

      And now Syria.

      Many here have criticized Catholicism, others (such as myself) the present pontiff. And yet Pope Francis –for all his faults (and boy are they many)–is arguing for no further escalation of conflict in the Middle East. Where pray-tell, is Patriarch Bartholomew in this? After all, isn’t he “the leader of 250 million Orthodox Christians”? Crickets. Some 3 million Orthodox Christians who “he leads” are in the Levant, getting ready to be butchered by ISIS.

      Why is the EP so quiet? Maybe because his overlord Erdogan is licking his chops, feverishly rubbing his hands because it looks like Trump is reverting to American form? I pray I’m wrong.

      • Peter Millman says

        Hi George,
        The Ecumenical Patriarch of Istanbul has been rather quiet, hasn’t he?

        • George Michalopulos says

          Yeah, that worries me. It may be a sign that things are about to get worse.

      • George Michalopulos says

        Still, it’s not all doom and gloom.

        Besides Gorsuch, there’s this bit of great news:


        Trump is carefully, methodically laying the groundwork for the retrenchment of the Nanny State with this move. In this and other such actions (Gorsuch for example), he’s listened very closely to Steve Bannon, the intellectual godfather whose views got him elected.

        Long story short: Bannon is my weather-vane. As long as he remains in the West Wing, we’ll be ok.

      • Most American Protestants are woefully ignorant of Orthodoxy. Most have not even heard of Orthodoxy. I am currently in dialogue with 3 former evangelicals who until meeting me, didn’t know about Orthodoxy, or knew so little, it (Orthodoxy) never registered on their radar as a significant, viable option.

        However, Protestants, generally speaking, (in their tradition, not necessarily individually) have a deep hatred for Roman Catholicism. Anything that looks, sounds, or smells like Roman Catholicism, gets the brunt of that hatred. Alas, we get the brunt of it because to them, we look, sound, and smell, like Roman Catholicism.

        You might be giving them too much credit by attributing them hatred for Orthodoxy specifically. I don’t think that’s the case, I think it’s a hatred of Roman Catholicism that is being transferred to us.

        • Joseph Lipper says

          Annoyed, I believe you are spot on. That has certainly been my experience also.

          Personally, I believe its better not to show any solidarity with Protestants or Catholics, and especially when it comes to politics.

          People need to know that Orthodoxy is different, not just more of the same thing around us.

    • Peter A. Papoutsis says

      HI Father. Unfortunately they are talking about regime change. Roger Stone stated that Trump does not want a wider war in Syrian, but the Generals are saying otherwise. Even our U.N. representative Hailey is calling for regime change. Not looking good, but we will see what happens.


    • I hope Pat is right.

  12. Ronda Wintheiser says
  13. Ronda Wintheiser says
  14. Ronda Wintheiser says
  15. Ronda Wintheiser says
  16. Ronda Wintheiser says
  17. Ronda Wintheiser says
  18. I will post this again, maybe it won’t be censored again. General Alexander of Cyber Command runs the military, economic, and global communications agenda of the US. Both Hillery and Trump were on board as viable, acceptable leaders for a stated goal of total dominance in each area mentioned above, especially cyber hacking covert cold war attacks.. A tomahawk missile doesn’t surprise me, any more than Obama jacking up troops numbers in Afghanistan after claiming to be a peace candidate. They got the agenda they want and we got the agenda they want, wither we want it or not.

  19. Ronda Wintheiser says
  20. Both Trump and Putin need to realize that the problem is Islam, not Arabs, not Persians/Iranians, etc. Islam. The Muslim has a disease and its name is Islam.

    Now, we can play Muslims against each other. Or we can ostracize them entirely. But what we cannot do is let them play us against each other, us being Christians. Secular Humanism is dead and dying. Shortly, atheism will not be plausible to most sane people. Their reasoning will catch up with them at least to the extent that they will be faced with the reality of God’s existence.

    I hope and pray that the Muslims can be converted to Christ. If not, there will be a great showdown between Christianity and Islam. Rest assured, Christ is God.

    Unequivocally, Trump needs to stand down, cease and desist.

    Don’t say anything, just let ’em sweat.

    • George Michalopulos says

      Another worry I have Misha is that the leaders of the Sunni states (Egypt, Jordan, Saudi) just met with Trump right before the Syria campaign. It seems that Trump is at least on a parallel track with them in that he is negating the rise of the “Shiite Crescent”.

      I’ve come to accept your view about the beneficence of Shia Islam as opposed to the Sunni brand. If I may add, Sunni Islam is more compatible with Freemasonry, in fact, Freemasonry leads to the unitarianism of Sunni Islam. Hence, I can foresee a time soon enough (around 2030) when a true world-religion arises from the dust. Freemasonry in this scenario would round out the rough edges of Sunni Islam and make it palatable to Westerners. And of course the Zio-Christians would go along with this if they could get their precious Third Temple.

      • Yeah, it’s beyond me at this point, George. All we can do is pray. I will monitor events and comment from time to time, but I’m just waiting for a hearing that will financially enable me to relocate to Cincinnati to St. George ROCOR parish there. I’m semi-retired now and plan to simply live out my days up there in as much peace as can be attained in this life.

    • Joseph Lipper says

      Misha, to say that Islam is the main problem in the Middle East comes directly out of Zionist propaganda. Thats what Zionists want us to believe and what is shown to us in the mainstream media, because the US is predominately pro-Zionist.

      Ask any Palestinian Orthodox Christian, and they will tell you that Zionism, and it’s overt US support of it, is the main problem.

      It is interesting to note that the keys to the Holy Selpuchre have been in the protective custody of a Muslim family in Jerusalem for generations. Why? Because the various Christian groups there are always fighting with each other, and the Jews can’t be trusted with it. When it comes to the Holy Sepulchre, only a Muslim family has been able to keep the peace.

      • Actually, the point that many are overlooking here is that Islam IS the problem in the MIddle East and that is why it has been vital to have Assad in power in Syria. The Assad family is Alawi Shiite, a subsect of Shiism. They are about the only ones who could keep peace in Syria given its religious factionalism, and then only so long as he maintains authoritarian rule. Oust him and it will be a Sunni/ISIS hellhole.

        • I’m also skeptical as to whether a two state solution in Israel is wise. Basically, it would just give Palestinian Arab Muslims a base from which to continue their efforts at eradicating Israel. They are implacable and that is what we should expect. If we have to side with one side or another, we should side with Israel:

          Psalm 135:21
          Blessed be the LORD from Zion, Who dwells in Jerusalem. Praise the LORD!

          Isaiah 24:23
          Then the moon will be abashed and the sun ashamed, For the LORD of hosts will reign on Mount Zion and in Jerusalem, And His glory will be before His elders.

          Isaiah 31:9
          “His rock will pass away because of panic, And his princes will be terrified at the standard,” Declares the LORD, whose fire is in Zion and whose furnace is in Jerusalem.

          Jeremiah 3:17
          At that time they will call Jerusalem “The Throne of the LORD,” and all the nations will be gathered to it, to Jerusalem, for the name of the LORD; nor will they walk anymore after the stubbornness of their evil heart.

          Isaiah 52:1-2
          Awake, awake, Clothe yourself in your strength, O Zion; Clothe yourself in your beautiful garments, O Jerusalem, the holy city; For the uncircumcised and the unclean Will no longer come into you. Shake yourself from the dust, rise up, O captive Jerusalem; Loose yourself from the chains around your neck, O captive daughter of Zion.

          Isaiah 40:2
          Speak kindly to Jerusalem; And call out to her, that her warfare has ended, That her iniquity has been removed, That she has received of the LORD’s hand double for all her sins.

          Isaiah 41:27
          Formerly I said to Zion, “Behold, here they are ” And to Jerusalem, “I will give a messenger of good news.”

          Isaiah 52:9
          Break forth, shout joyfully together, You waste places of Jerusalem; For the LORD has comforted His people, He has redeemed Jerusalem.

          Luke 13:34-35
          O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones those sent to her! How often I wanted to gather your children together, just as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, and you would not have it! “Behold, your house is left to you desolate; and I say to you, you will not see Me until the time comes when you say, “Blessed is He who comes in the name of the LORD!”

          • Fr. Herman Schick says


            I fail to see the relevance of your scriptural quotes. Do you really believe they refer to the modern state of Israel, as the Protestant Zionists do?

            • George Michalopulos says

              Agreed, Fr. While I have no problem with any ethnicity having its own nation (in this case, the Jews), we who are Orthodox Christians need to remind everybody that the Church is Israel. That God’s promises to Abraham are fulfilled in the Church of Christ, not the Synagogue.

            • Peter Millman says

              Greetings Father Schick,

              I agree completely with you; I thought the same thing myself. I may be wrong, but I wonder if Misha is not infected with protestant dispensationalism. As I understand it, all of God’s promises to Israel have already been fulfilled. I don’t believe that the ethnic cleansing of the Palestinian Christians is something our God would condone. In my humble opinion, the modern state of Israel is most certainly not a fulfillment of prophecy.

              • George Michalopulos says

                Peter, for what it’s worth, all Hassidic/Haredi sects were violently opposed to the creation of the modern State of Israel in 1948. This was for theological reasons (only the Moshiach could found Eretz Yisroel) or for prosaic reasons (the Zionists were all a bunch of secularists and atheists who had goyim envy).

                While some Haredi at present are on board with the present Israeli polity, a good many are not.

            • Fr. Herman,

              I want to put a fine point on what I do mean, so that there is no confusion.

              The Jews rejected Christ and it is possible that God allowed the Holocaust for this very reason. I am an Orthodox Christian, not a Jew. Nonetheless, I will not side with Muslims against anyone else since I believe that their entire religion was inspired by Satan, not the angel Gabriel as Muhammad alleged.

              I do not think that God has completely forsaken the Jews and their return to Israel is likely a sign of the impending eschaton. I assume that many Jews will be converted in the last days since it will be inarguable that Christ is Lord at that point at which time much of St. John’s Apocalypse will have been acted out before our eyes.

              First and foremost, of course, I side with Palestinian Orthodox Christians against any and all adversaries. That should be clear.

              • Fr. Herman Schick says

                Thank you, Misha, for your clarification!

                My only concern was that your quoting of certain Scriptural passages sounded to me very much like how Evangelical Christian Zionists twist Bible verses mentioning “Israel” to refer to the modern state, rather than properly to the Church.

                Have a blessed Holy Week and radiant Pascha!

        • Joseph Lipper says

          Misha, I agree with you that if Assad is taken out, then Syria becomes an even greater chaotic mess. Netanyahu knows this also, and yet he is the first to support the US attack on Assad, on…ahem…the high moral ground of justice against a regime that gasses some of their own people. Wasn’t that also one of charges against Saddam Hussein and part of the rationale for invading Iraq?

          An ISIS-controlled Syria is exactly what the Israelis want. It means eventual victory for the Zionists.

          Already Netanyahu is calling for a no-fly buffer zone in Syria. Doesn’t that sound familar? Just like Erdogan, Netanyahu is wondering where he can put all these unwelcome “squatters” to get them out of his country. The more chaotic things become in Syria, the more rationale there will be for extreme measures.

          ISIS is like an evil caricature of an enemy. The world would have no problem if the Israelis used a nuclear missle against a Syria that is controlled by ISIS. The world would probably even thank them for doing that. Netanyahu might even get a Noble peace prize for nuking ISIS – saving the world from terrorists!

          • George Michalopulos says

            And incidentally nuking about 20 million other Arabs in the process! Brilliant! In this scenario the Israelis kill two birds with one stone.

            • God does not desire the death of a sinner but rather that he repent and live. Most Muslims were born into Islam. It most certainly is a diabolical religion. But those Muslims are created, nonetheless, in the likeness and image of God.

              Thus, we have to oppose them, expel them, contain them and convert them. If and when they assault us, we may kill them. However, pre-emptive war is what we’re striving to avoid here. God has laid out His plan for resolution in the Apocalypse of St. John. We dare not tweak it, lest we become what we abhor.

              We should be as patient as we can muster. However, God gave us great latitude in the example of Israel regarding warfare. We are better armed than they are. At some point, likely, Christ will call time and settle the matter. Until then, we contend as is appropriate to the situation.

          • Peter Millman says

            Hi Joseph,
            The world would have great problems with Israel nuking Syria for it would surely lead to World War 3. There is only one reason that Israel survives; that is because of US support. Israel is already a world pariah. The apartheid state maintains nuclear ambiguity; if Israel strikes, the US must immediately end its foreign military assistance. It is illegal for the US to render military aid to any nuclear power that hasn’t signed the NNPT. As it is, the state of Israel is headed for the dustbin of history.

            • George Michalopulos says

              Peter, what you write is essentially true unfortunately if the Israelis feel that they have their back up against the wall and no other choice, then they may very well nuke ’em.

          • Michael Bauman says

            Repugnant is not a strong enough word. Why did Trump not target ISIS with the missiles? No one ever seems to go after ISIS — not really.

            Trump got played.

            • George Michalopulos says

              Answer: because ISIS is supported by Israel.

              • Oh, I doubt that.

                Whatever you want to call it, ISIS, al-Qa’ida, etc., we should be clear about whom we are siding with and fighting against.

                The truth of Christianity lies in the reliability of the Old and New Testaments. So Judaism/Hebraism, before Christ, was the religion of God; i.e., the religion He revealed to His chosen people. Christ was among them.

                It is only Rabbinic Judaism which is false insofar as it rejects Christ. We need to be clear about that because we are facing Islam.

                There was never anything good about Islam, period. The Persians tried to adjust Sunni Islam into Shiite Islam and Sufism, and they had some success in aleviating their own misery. But neither Russians nor Americans should be taking the side of any form of Islam against Christianity.

                That will not do.

                So, though we can play these people against each other, it is more important that we don’t get played by them.

                Russia should distance itself from Iran, Iraq and Syria, as should we. And we should distance ourselves from Saudi Arabia and the Sunni countries insofar as we can do so.

                Let them kill each other. They enjoy it.

                And we can send missionaries to help them see the light.

                But don’t hold hands with a jumper.

  21. You just stare them down and wait til they purr like cats. And if they don’t, then you take action.

  22. http://www.businessinsider.com/steve-bannon-may-be-on-his-last-leg-in-the-white-house-2017-4

    I saw this too. If I were Trump, I’d keep Bannon. Maybe the son-in-law was given too much power in an effort to defuse matters.

  23. You all need to calm down, nothing really big happened, other than President Trump said NO to the world when it comes to gassing civilians, especially children. A few missiles fired at airbases will not start WW3. Syria is not worth starting a war over with Russia. Hell Turkey shot down a Russian jet, and we are all still here. Quite frankly all this talk here about war with Russia, and Syria is the biggest BS of all. Enough all ready! We are not going nuclear with Russia! Sorry all you Doomsdayers, you might have to live long productive lives.

    On a sad note, George or really any of us for that matter, neither cried, or raised a voice, here on Monomakhos for the innocent children that suffered horrible deaths from the nerve agents released by Assad, days before the missile attack. Heaven forbid anyone here ever criticize Putin, or not make excuses for Assad.

    • George Michalopulos says

      Dino, I never said anything about the children dying “because of Assad” because there was no proof that it was Assad who gassed them. Remember, just two days before the gas attack, both Rex Tillerson and Nikki Haley said that removing Assad was not a priority. That Assad’s future was up to the Syrian people. In other words, as far as the State Dept was concerned, Assad was in the free and clear.

      Why would he launch a gas attack then? It makes no sense.

      Let’s say however he did. Well, the Israelis dropped phosphorus on the Gazans back in 2006. The Saudis are bombing Yemeni villages. Boko Haram is enslaving Christian girls and raping them. Ukronazis are murdering eastern Ukrainians simply because they want to secede from Kiev. Then there are hundreds of European innocents who are being slaughtered by Muzzie invaders in Nice, Rotherham, Stockholm, Paris and Berlin. Should we go to war against them?

      We need to think very carefully here. I did not vote for Trump because he was a warmonger lite. One of the reasons I voted for him was because he had a realistic, Hobbesian understanding of human society and that he was bold enough to say that the world was actually better off when thugs like Qaddafi and Saddam ruled their respective countries.

      There’s no way that we can say otherwise at this point.

      I do hope you’re right about WWIII.

      • George it makes perfect sense. Assad thought he had a green light to do whatever he wanted. George why do you bring up other conflicts in the world, quite sophomoric. We both know why we pick and choose our conflicts so why go there? The red line IS gases, and nerve agents and we should bomb any country that uses such weapons, even Israel.

        Of course I wish Saddam and Qaddafi were still in power. My point again is no gas attacks or we will bomb the hell out of you.

        So now you don’t trust President Trump’s intel and want to play who gassed the Syrians. Yeah let’s throw out all the conspiracy theories, because the never heard of websites say Assad’s not responsible. Quick to doubt President Trump so that your boy Putin doesn’t receive a black eye. Meanwhile children are buried and as we speak gasping for breath.

        May we all have a blessed Palm Sunday, as we continue to seek the gates of heaven!

        • George Michalopulos says

          Dino, why would Assad gas these people? He’s pretty much winning the war as it is. Gassing would give everybody the vapors against him. It’s counter-productive. Even the Russians have said that they’re not going to be holding his hands forever.

          • Saddam gassed his people when he had full control of Iraq. The Muslims mindset is not like ours. Fear must always be in place to control the masses. Also again nothing happened last time Assad gassed his own, and Trump seemed by all,less likely by all to intervene. Lastly, I hope your “give everyone vapors” was not a joke. The killing of God’s children is never to be taken lightly.

            • George Michalopulos says

              Dino, I can’t let this go: I continue to direct our collective attention to the destruction of human life by terrorists in our own lands. Were those poor people in San Bernadino white trash undeserving of sympathy, or the homosexuals in Orlando less than human? What about the innocent women and children who were murdered on Bastille Day in Nice, or the hundreds of German women who were sexually assaulted in Cologne? Were they all sluts undeserving of safety? What about what happened in Egypt this morning while hundreds of Christians were merely going to church. I truly feel sorry for those people who died in the Syrian gas attack but for the life of me, but American blood and treasure should only be expended on American interests, not the globalists who merely want to take down another secular Arab regime. When all is said and done, I don’t understand why we feel the need to police the world.

              “There is no education in the second kick of a mule”. I believe it was Mitch McConnell who said that.

              Haven’t we learned our lesson about regime change in Libya or nation building in Iraq? Can’t we just be honest with ourselves and realize that –short of outright colonialism–we are incapable of building nations? That maybe the natives are happy with the way they’ve structured their cultures? The Arab/tribalist way of life is not my cup of tea but the fact that they’ve survived under these cultural norms for thousands of years is not something to be taken lightly.

              Instead, can’t we just concentrate on fixing what’s wrong with America? Detroit, Baltimore, Chicago, etc. deserve our attention, not Damascus, Basra or Falluja.

              Please forgive me if I offend but I won’t be taken for a fool again as I was during both Iraq wars. Afghanistan I understand as it was the hotbed of Al-Qaeda but Iraq?

              • George,

                You’re right. Don’t be dissuaded from what is obvious. If anyone had any interest in using chemical weapons in Syria, it would have been some militant Islamic group holding caches someplace there. Assad was winning the war with the help of Russia. Neither had a motive. I still think the most likely scenario as to what happened was that either the Syrians or Russians bombed a cache of ISIS or al-Nusra chemical weapons, assuming that chemical weapons were responsible for the injuries that have been reported. It’s damn difficult to trust any media about anything anymore given the level of the polemic.

                That was what Trump could not seem to appreciate. Although I understand his frustration given the impossibility of knowing exactly who did what over there, unless you have eyes on the ground you don’t really know. But ask yourself this, who is willing to break any and every rule in pursuit of their sick ideology. Answer: ISIS. They even set aside sharia’s protections for people of the book and behead Christians indiscriminately. Even Muhammad would not have approved of such monstrous behavior. That’s the type of monsters we are dealing with in ISIS – they are a type of Grendal and Grendal’s mother is the Qur’an.

                Hopefully, we have a Beowulf in Trump and a Dmitri Donskoy in Putin. Time will tell.

                • George and Misha,aka Bagdad Bobs,

                  George your stated terrorists attacks, don’t compare with Assad’s sarin/gas murders for one obvious reason. Assad is the leader of a nation killing innocent children, and the terrorists are individuals. Apples and Oranges.

                  NEWS FLASH COMRADES GEORGE AND MISHA! Now Fox News is reporting that not only did Assad murder children and babies with gas/nerve agents, but Russia knew about the attack before hand, and bombed the hospital treating the gassed, with their own planes to cover it all up for Assad.

                  Of course you and Misha will say this is the Deep State making up stories. Orthodox pious Christian Putin would never lie or do anything evil to promote his wannabe empire. Perhaps Superpower envy? Has there ever been a negative story about Putin on Monomakhos? I understand Assad has a history of protecting Christians in Syria, but here is a hypothetical for my Russophile friends. What if Assad was gassing Christian children in Syrian towns? Would you all still be as upset if America bombed the airports and planes carry the nerve agents, or screaming for protection, and justice for the Christians of Syria. I have to believe the innocent Muslim babies and children murdered are under the loving embrace of Jesus Christ. Keep looking the other way lovers of Russia, and Putin, your beloved MP sure is.

                  • George Michalopulos says

                    Dino, are you calling Obama a liar? Or Susan Rice? Or John Kerry? They all told us that Assad had given up all his chemical weapons. Then there was that brilliant CIA Director (George Tenet) who assured Bush 43 that Saddam had WMD. It was a “slam dunk” in his words.

                    Always remember one thing: the first casualty in war is the truth.

                    • What is truth George, do you know? Who are we to believe if all here in America lie to us. Does Putin know the truth, and should we be lock step behind him because he prays in our church? Am I wrong to question the virtue of a former KGB agent, who was/is , good/evil enough to take control of all of Russia. Putin makes Vito Corleone look like a cub scout. Is the hand of God upon him as well as Trump. I have to believe Trump is acting in the best interest of our nation, after all he loves the country that has given him everything he could possibly ask for. Until he loses that trust I’m with Trump before Putin. You can put your trust in Putin, and Russia, good luck with that!

                    • George Michalopulos says

                      Dino, I want to believe that Trump is acting in the best interests of our nation. I just question whether getting bogged down in the Middle East for the benefit of Israel is in our best interests. That’s all.

                      BTW, I could be wrong. It may very well be in our interest to have a war in Syria. I just don’t see it.

                  • Dino,

                    I’m not sure exactly what happened on the ground in Syria. I am too wary of the MSM, especially the AP, to put much credence in what is reported. I do not know for sure that chemical weapons were in some way released upon people. That may be. I do not know if the Syrian government used them as alleged. That may be. I do not know if the Syrian bombers hit a chemical weapons cache belonging to ISIS or al Nusra, etc. That may be as well.

                    What I do know is that neither the Russians nor the Syrians under Assad had any motivation to use chemical weapons. There is no reason for them to risk it even if they thought it would give them some tactical advantage which it would not. It would be totally irrational behavior.

                    Now, we do see footage of what is reported as civilians who have been subjected to chemical weapons. And that is certainly geared toward stirring up the passions. And it seems to have been effective.

                    Trump fired missiles at a Syrian air basing killing a number of people and wiping out a significant part of Syria’s air force because someone told him that Syria used chemical weapons and he believed it.

                    That much I do know.

                    What I also know is that it was a serious mistake. Russia and the Syrian government under Assad were defeating the Sunni insurgents, ISIS, al Nusra, etc. It is the Sunnis who are coming for Americans, not the Shiites. Trump and Americans need to get that through their damn thick heads before it’s too late.

                    Russia was using the Shiite Alawi Assad government of Syria in order to stamp out Sunni ISIS and al Nusra/al Qa’ida. We just attacked them for doing so. That is infantile stupidity and very, very dangerous for a leader of a great power in possession of nuclear weapons since it is an affront to another great power in possession of nuclear weapons.

                    This is not about a few dozen chemical casualties in Syria. That’s relatively insignificant, though a terrible tragedy if indeed that is what happened. But who knows?

                    Trump is being tempted to side with the Sunni Saudis and other jihad enablers against the Shiites and Russia, Putin having coopted the Shiites against the jihadis. He should decline the invitation. Because if he does not decline it, there will be hell to pay and no one will be able to stop it.

                    Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin is not a businessman. He is an intelligence guy, a warrior of high caliber (a ju-jitsu master) and a patriot. I take him at face value on his Orthodoxy. This tension may be a show for the cameras and they may work it all out behind closed doors. But that missile strike was not likely part of the plot that anyone envisioned. That was pure hubris on Trump’s part, as was his comment that he might hit Assad again.

                    Trump needs to be very, very careful about whom he offends at this level. The Russians do not think of nuclear war as unthinkable. They would quickly field tactical nukes if they thought that their territorial integrity were in question. They made an investment in Assad and thought that they were on the same page as Trump in this regard.

                    This is not good.

                    Trump’s involved; Putin’s committed. It’s like ham and eggs. The hen who lays the eggs is involved; the pig’s committed.

                    Trump needs to come to appreciate that very quickly.

    • A few missiles fired at airbases will not start WW3.

      No? You should read about how WWI got started.

      And there’s this: https://www.thesun.co.uk/news/3293221/russia-and-iran-say-they-will-respond-to-american-aggression-following-air-strike-in-syria/

    • Gail Sheppard says

      No, Dino, because they don’t believe Assad did it or is accountable in any way. Some don’t even believe it happened. They don’t see the Baath connection to Iraq, remember the sarin attacks on the Kurds or consider that these weapons might have originated in Iraq and been smuggled to Syria all those years ago when we were looking for them in the wrong place. They’ve also forgotten Ghouta and Khan and who had the most to gain.

      Through Metropolitan Philip, Assad has amassed a huge cult following within the Church and people are SO SURE they know him, all the innocent people who have died in his wake are forgotten; like they were with his father before him. What matters most is protecting the Assad image. It’s going to be very painful when they have to confront the truth. Some never will.

      We are not at war. There was no significant damage because there wasn’t meant to be. This was a tangible warning that unlike his predecessor, Trump will act. Had we wanted a war, we would have done the “shock and awe” thing. This was not it.

      Assad has long lost his grip. If he doesn’t go quietly into the night I believe Russia will join the U.S. to help him make his exit. Their connection to Assad is like a bad marriage that has gone on too long and Putin knows it.

      I wonder if the Church in its “infinite wisdom” is prepared to let Assad go. Maybe, if Putin is OK with it because now he has a cult following of his own. “But he’s Orthodox,” they exclaim!

      We want so much to believe that everything connected to the Church is holy. I learned a long time ago it isn’t.

      • George Michalopulos says

        Gail, I pray that you’re correct. I have no problem with Assad stepping down provided that he isn’t replaced by a jihadi who then goes about murdering Christians and Alawties. As I’ve said earlier, I thought that this was a “one-off” and continue to think so. (Although I am worried that KT McFarland was taken off the NSC. Not a good sign IMHO.)

      • Gail,

        You and I are the minority here, for sure. Please understand my background is 100% Greek, and I belong to the Greek Orthodox Church, BUT I am Greece’s, the EP’s and the GOAs first critic when they are in the wrong. The majority here on Monomakhos never seem to find fault with Russia, their MP, and of course Putin. Now they are making excuses for Assad as well. Amazing how far their loyalty goes to mother Russia, and her allies. Lets not forget all of Russia’s short coming are because of the west, and the Jews. There’s even whispers that Israel is at fault for the gas bombs as well. Good grief the ignorance!

        Metropolitan Philip, no doubt, was acting in self preservation, if the Muslim leader of a majority Muslim nation is offering protection, of course loyalty is expected, and usually given. But at what cost? Remember the atrocities in the former Yugoslavia? The murder of Christian and Muslim children, in the name of which God they prayed to. Many turned a blind eye, in hate and fear of the other, that once was their neighbor and friend. I would, as God is my witness, turn the rifle on myself, before firing upon children. There is a line that should never be crossed.

        I understand woman, and children will be killed in civil wars, but even in war, 100 years ago, the world agreed upon a fine line(poison gas) that should never be crossed. Assad has crossed it twice, thank God there is one leader in the world brave enough to say NO the second time, and do something about! I agree with George, in that I am against nation building. Bombing Assad’s delivery methods of poison gas is a different story!

        Gail you are a wise, and compassionate Christian woman! The Orthodox Church was, is and will always be Holy. It’s just some of it’s members that fall far from the mark.

        • George Michalopulos says

          Dino, again, I ask: are you sure that it was Assad that used sarin gas?

          • George Michalopulos says

            Dino, et al: please take the time (8 minutes) to watch this video. It casts a lot of doubt on the official story regarding the Syrian gas attack:


            • George,
              I’m going black after today. My prayers to you, your family, and to all here at Monomakhos. We have much to pray about this week.

              The only truth I know for sure George, is our resurrected Christ!

            • Peter A. Papoutsis says

              Assad did not gas bomb his people. More Deep State propaganda and Trump via Ivanka bought it hook line and sinker.


            • Peter A. Papoutsis says

              Check this very disappointing article:
              Eric Trump, President Donald Trump’s 33-year-old son, told The Daily Telegraph on Monday that his sister Ivanka told their father to strike Syria following a chemical weapons attack on civilians last week believed to be carried out by the Syrian military.

              Trump said his sister was “heartbroken and outraged” by the chemical attack, which killed dozens of people, including children.

              “Ivanka is a mother of three kids and she has influence,” Trump said. “I’m sure she said, ‘Listen, this is horrible stuff.’ My father will act in times like that.”

              Ivanka Trump recently took an official position in the White House as an assistant to her father.

              Eric Trump, who spoke with The Daily Telegraph during a visit to the Trump Turnberry golf resort in Ayrshire, Scotland, said his father was “deeply affected” by the images and video footage he saw of children being “sprayed down by hoses to keep their skin from burning.” Trump added that he believed his father had a moral obligation to act against the Syrian government.

              “It was horrible,” he said. “These guys are savages and I’m glad he responded the way he responded. I’m proud he took that action, and believe me he thinks things through.”

              He added that his father’s views on the US’s involvement in Syria had changed because of the brutality of last week’s attack.

              “And by the way, he was anti doing anything with Syria two years ago,” Trump said. “Then a leader gasses their own people, women and children, at some point America is the global leader and the world’s superpower has to come forward and act and they did with a lot of support of our allies and I think that’s a great thing.”

              Following the Syrian government’s chemical attack on civilians in 2013, Donald Trump repeatedly implored President Barack Obama not to take action against the Syrian regime, arguing that a US attack would “bring nothing but trouble” for the US.

              In contrast to his statements in 2013, Trump as president argued that last week’s chemical attack was a result of the Obama administration’s “weakness and irresolution” following the Syrian regime’s 2013 chemical attack.

              Sad and sickening all at the same time. I hope and pray God turns Trump around. The reprieve is hanging by a thread. Time to pray and pray hard.


        • George Michalopulos says

          Saunca, I have no problem with “finding fault with Putin” or Tsipras or Netanyahu or Merkel or Obama or even Trump for that matter.

          It’s just that I don’t live and breathe neoconservative Trotskyism anymore or that a resurgent, Christianized Russia is all evil all the time and the role of the US is to send Red-state farm boys to their deaths because of the evil Wilsonian religion that has gripped out country for a century.

        • Christ is Risen! Truly he is Risen! Saunca! Right is right, and wrong is wrong. Christ does not care about borders or favor one Orthodox jurisdiction over another.

      • Gail,
        This will my last post until after Pascha, but I wanted to let you know that I spoke to a close family friend who frequents a monastery here in the states quite often, and the Elder is his spiritual father and friend. Anyway he confirmed what you said about Assad having a cult following, of course not his or the Elders words but none the less, this is what he told me:

        Assad when visiting a church requested to be left alone in the church, the monks emptied the church, let Assad in and shut the doors. While Assad was admiring the church in privacy, he noticed a woman was also in the church. Immediately he came out of the church, and complained to the monks that a woman was in the church. The monks were baffled knowing they cleared the church, and there was no woman in the church. Of course the monks concluded the woman was the Theotokos, visiting the guardian of Syria’s Christians. Goes without saying the Elder, most monks and most Christians in Syria believe Assad to be a great man, regardless if he is a Muslim, and a murderer. I take no pleasure sharing this story with you. I have great respect for the Elder and monastics, I just wish they would steer clear of politics.

        Take it for what’s it worth, thought you might find the story interesting.

        Kali Anastasi

        • George Michalopulos says

          Dino, more will come out from the Elder in short order. Not necessarily about Syria or Russia but about Orthodoxy here in America.

          Stay tuned.

          For what it’s worth, I’m not a fan of the Assad dynasty at all. I’m even less a fan of Christians, Yazidis, Alawites and Syrian Jews being slaughtered indscriminitely by Sunni fanatics going blood simple.

        • George Michalopulos says

          BTW, I think we should all take Dino’s advise and “go dark” until after Easter.

          I hope nobody will be offended, however in the interests of fair play anybody who is in the process of answering, commenting may do so today as I did not give fair notice to y’all.

          Would that be ok?


  24. Mike Cernovich (whose well-placed sources allowed him to break the Susan Rice story and report the missile strikes were coming hours before anything was announced) is now saying that the White House is planning to deploy up to 150,000 troops to Syria by June. And Nicky Haley is saying regime change in Syria is US policy (it wasn’t a week ago).

    If Trump escalates this beyond symbolic missile strikes, I’m off the Trump Train. One thing I always liked about Trump was that he valued loyalty, but he’s not showing much loyalty to the people who voted for him.

    BTW, New York Times reported that ISIS has staged over 50 chemical attacks recently. What happened to “bombing the s***” out of them?

    Oh wait, the petrodollar.

    • George Michalopulos says

      Ages, I too am worried.

    • Alas, the neo-cons may have gotten to him. If so, that’s too bad. It makes the world a much more dangerous place. He has the choice before him to be Saul or David. Saul refused to go after the enemies of old Israel and was deposed in favor of David. Trump seems to want to see regime change in Syria rather than join with Russia to fight ISIS. I can’t say for sure because I don’t know what’s going on in the White House.

      I doubt Syria used chemical weapons. They had no reason to do so. Trump probably jumped the gun and struck without thinking it through and getting the best information. But he shouldn’t make bad choices into a habit.

      Even if Syria had used chemical weapons, it’s an internal Syrian matter. Unless he wants to be the world’s policeman, he needs to cease and desist that kind of thing. If he challenges Russia in Syria, it will be a disaster. That is what we were trying to avoid in opposing Hillary. She bought into that type of madness by vowing to impose a no-fly zone over Syria.

      Trump failed to see that the Russians were just keeping their enemies close in dealing with Iran. Iran and Syria can be used against the Sunnis. Saudi Arabia and the other Sunni Muslim countries can be used against the Shiites. We let them kill each other and stay out of direct conflict with other Christians.

      But perpetuating a “civil war” in Syria is probably not the best way to go about this. Russia is already there. We would have to drive them out. We simply do not want American and Russian forces in close proximity and in danger of firing on one another.

      That rule was formulated in the Cold War to keep the Cold War cold.

      Trump needs to ruminate on that last sentence very carefully until he comes to Jesus and sees a better way.

  25. http://www.cnn.com/2017/04/08/politics/trump-bannon-kushner-divisions/

    This is just my humble opinion of a way out of all of this crap:

    1. Keep Bannon as consigliere with authority over Kushner (the son-in-law) and his new administrative apparatus. Kushner reports to Bannon, Bannon to Trump. Bannon would be in on any NSA meetings as agreed. That should take care of all the Russia problems and the internal family squabbles in the White House. The Syria thing was probably a mistake, but it’s done and he needs to roll with it.

    2. As to the Church in America: Archbishop Demetrios should quietly petition the synod of the Church of Greece to receive GOARCH under its omophorion in the event that Bartholomew is deposed or excommunicated for heresy.

    3. The OCA may want to consider merging under Antioch. Their practices are close and it might be the most sensible thing to do. OCA may be going through an internal divorce. Part of it going with the Crete council and the Phanar, part of it refusing to do so. The part that refuses to do so will be hard pressed to maintain its autocephaly. It could apply to come under the mother church, Russia. Or it could merge with Antioch, assuming that Antioch refuses to go down the road map of Crete.

    4. Nonetheless, there is hope on the horizon for the Church in America. If Abp. Demetrios were successfully to move GOARCH under the Church of Greece, then his successor could be chosen from among the archimandrites of the Athonite monasteries here in America.

    5. At some point, if Antioch, GOARCH and the OCA returned to the Church Calendar, then those three jurisdictions plus ROCOR could merge here in America to form the American Orthodox Church, the autocephaly of which might gradually be recognized by the traditional patriarchates currently looking toward Moscow as the remaining great local church of Orthodoxy.

    Then we could all take a breather and move on to dealing with Islam.

    In the meantime, a united American Orthodox Church consisting of Greeks, Antiochians, the traditional part of the OCA and ROCOR would stand a good chance at converting American Protestants, Anglicans, Pentecostal/Charismatics and Roman Catholics given a unity in numbers and support of the flagship local churches of Antioch and Russia.

    That is about as close to symphonia as we can come in America. It was a mistake for Trump to allow his daughter to convert to Judaism. That’s water under the bridge, as is the Syrian thing. He can make it all good though by doing something like the above.

    Being the first effective monarch of America was always a perilous portfolio. It’s a question of being impious like Saul and not siding with the Lord or being fervent like David and continuing to repent and plow forward.

    • Billy Jack Sunday says

      It won’t happen due to unseen forces calling the shots. The GOARCH is not what it appears to be.

  26. Anonymous says

    The US was closely monitoring the Assad regime’s bombing campaign-even said so.

    The US military saw the plane take off; knew the crater it’s bomb left, and reviewed the sarin trace. Case closed; 30 seconds.

    The real story is this disaster was created by Putin’s false notion that he and Trump were buddies. And Trump’s ten prior tweets that Obama needed to hands off Syria.

    Nothing complex here. Putin and Assad miscalculated Trump’s decency and humanity.

    • George Michalopulos says

      I hope you’re right. From what I’ve heard, any attempt to examine the traces of sarin gas at that airfield were derailed.

      • Trump has taken pains to assert that his Syrian policy has not changed. That is good. Assad is the only one who can keep peace over there. The bombing was a mistake on Trump’s part, but hopefully not a dispositive, fatal error.


        Even the neo-cons are starting to understand. If Muslims want to kill Muslims, so be it. That’s a much better project for them than killing Christians. This isn’t rocket science (forgive the pun):


        More on playing with fire:


        This, however, I take as positive and good news:


        • I will say this though:

          If Assad did use chemical weapons, then the strike would be justified if Trump deemed it in the national interest to counter the use of chemical weapons. In that case, it may be that Assad needs to go. But they will have to work that out at the highest levels.

          • Another smoking gun, US military reviewed intercepts and found them discussing the sarin attack as reported Wednesday.

            Time for the Shia butcher to go.

            • Pdn Brian Patrick Mitchell says

              If this is true, why wasn’t it included in the intelligence estimate released by the White House? Where are you getting your information? And who are you?

              It doesn’t sound like you really know what you’re talking about or have read the intel estimate. The estimate provides no conclusive evidence that the gas was delivered by air, and if its authors really knew Assad was to blame, they would have certainly written that they were “highly confident” of their conclusions. Instead, they claim only to be “confident” of the Syrian air force’s responsibility based on circumstantial evidence like capability, opportunity, and past patterns of behavior, about which the analysts assume many things that are disputed.

              • Anonymous says

                Consider simply that the runways are intact after 59 missiles hit dime sized targets and get back to me with all the nuance you want.

                The intel est. didn’t have it because they reviewed all intercepts post attack and found it in the recordings amd it was reported Wednesday. We don’t have every frequency covered and interpreted every second. Some of it is disregarded as unneeded. The US military disclosed this to the media Wednesday in a press briefing.

                They have little cause to lie about Assad the butcher.

                If they wanted a smoking gun; they had it.

                • Pdn Brian Patrick Mitchell says

                  Anonymous, you obviously don’t know enough about intelligence, the military, or the media to evaluate your sources of information, which seem to consist of nothing more than press reports. The runways weren’t hit because runways are easy to repair, and it takes very big bombs to make them unusable for more than a day. The White House intel estimate was released the day before an unnamed “senior US official” told CNN that radio intercepts prove the Syrians were planning a gas attack, so we are still left to wonder why that detail was left out of the the intel estimate.

                  Quite suspiciously, the US has not released transcripts of the intercepts. Everything rests on the words of an anonymous source to CNN. Ha ha ha.

                  CNN reported similar claims in 2013 about the Ghouta gas attack, but no transcripts were ever released. In his 2003 speech to the UN, Colin Powell did quote from transcripts of radio intercepts to justify war with Iraq, but the transcripts themselves, even if authentic, didn’t prove Iraq had WMD.

                  So there is no smoking gun, just the usual rumors from the usual suspects fronting for the usual interests.

            • This MIT professor disagrees with the intelligence estimate and has thoughtful data to back up his argument: http://www.globalresearch.ca/assessment-of-white-house-intelligence-report-about-nerve-agent-attack-in-khan-shaykhun-syria/5584867.

              Remember when the butcher Saddam Hussein was removed on tainted pretext? A lot of us aren’t buying it this time.

    • The US government simply isn’t credible, especially the intelligence services. Too many lies for too many years. How can anyone know whether they are telling the truth or not?

      • Anonymous says

        You have to realize how badly Trump got hosed by Assad. If you think about a measured response; using sarin on your people is worthy of losing your entire air force. This notion of sovereignty that Iran, Russia, and Syria hold onto is not what modern history has shown; at least within reason.

        For obvious reasons this was, militarily, a handslap.

        The alternative was cartoons of Trump, Assad, and Putin pleasuring each other.

        And sorry, when Trump got the intel; his choices dwindled. The intel is solid, despite the pacifists, Putin n Assad lovers, etc. The rebels are fighting asymetrically; they have no air force to drop bombs.

        Consider finally, if the US was looking for a reason; they had it, but the response would have been far more significant. When the final story gets told; the Tomahawks missed the runways from what I understand.

        • Killing one’s own people didn’t begin with Assad. Lincoln killed lots more of his own people, albeit rebellious ones, than Assad ever could.

          • Anonymous says

            Actually check your math. I think Assad is winning if you only count the rebels.

            No matter. Due to the use of sarin; Assad will never be legitimate amd the world will never recognize him. He ought to ask Putin for asylum; not support.

  27. If he wants to avoid a nuclear war, the one person Trump needs to respect is Vladimir Putin. Russians don’t bluff about national security. The history tells the tale. You can take it to the bank that if Putin feels that Russian national interests are directly threatened, he will wage nuclear war.

  28. Final appraisal:

    Всё было маскировка.

  29. George,

    I think they (Trump, Putin, etc.) are just reverting to instinct. God knows how He wants it to pan out. We don’t. I’m through speculating on the details. I’ve been pretty much take-it-to-the-bank on theology, with a bump or two. But regarding the future, only broad outlines are there for us to see.

    Anyone can see that Islam is antithetical to Christianity. Only one of the two religions can be true. Other religions that came before Christ, there may have been truth in them, man reaching out to God, God leading man in whatever way He chose to.

    Judaism was a preparation. Christ was the leaven.

    Christ is Risen

  30. Why are we taunting the North Korean regime? No doubt they need to be contained, but I’m sure no good will come out of perpetually provoking them.

    Consider for a moment the fact that China has ballistic missiles and Russia has ballistic missiles. China doesn’t use them because they have no idea about the hereafter. Russia doesn’t use them because they do know about the hereafter and wish to act responsibly.

    North Korea doesn’t know about the hereafter because they are communists/materialists. Thus, North Korea is probably terrified of what might transpire.

    Perhaps the Chinese could smooth this thing over and get everyone on the same page with a security agreement that leaves the North Korean regime in power and not pursuing any military nuclear program.