Is Syria the Surprise?

The United States of America has attacked Syria, Iraq's neighbor to the West. "A U.S. military official said the raid by special forces targeted the network of al-Qaida-linked foreign fighters moving through Syria into Iraq." The attack, which Syria decried as "serious aggression" resulted in the deaths of eight civilians; "The government said civilians were among the dead, including four children."

According to the MSNBC article the Syrian border is loosely controlled in comparison to the shared border's with Saudi Arabia and Jordan, two of Iraq's other neighbors. US Major General John Kelly stated that the US is helping to construct a series of sand burms and ditches between the Iraq-Syria border. He then went on to say that "there hasn't been much, in the way of a physical barrier, along that border for years."

Is the grand answer a wall? I thought Reagan's greatest accomplishment was supposed to be the destruction of the Berlin wall, where he famously declared: Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall." But now his party seems content to rebuild it.

Why on earth would the Bush administration order an attack on Syria nine days before the election? There are two scenarios; either Bush believes this escalation will help McCain or he believes that McCain is so far behind that his only resort is to leave Obama with a bigger problem. I'm still disregarding a possibility however; perhaps this attack was actually the right course of action. Or not. Any attack that could be carried out now, could be carried out in nine days, after the election. The timing of this attack illustrates its intention.

What made this attack imperative? The apparent reasoning follows, as quoted from the MSNBC article: "The area targeted is near the Iraqi border city of Qaim, which had been a major crossing point for fighters, weapons and money coming into Iraq to fuel the Sunni insurgency." If the US government just realized rebels were entering Iraq through the borders they are absolutely stupid. They should have known this already, and as such they could have conducted such a raid anytime within the last three years. The White House's supportive reasoning behind this attack illustrates its intention.

The intention of this attack was not in America's best interest, but rather George Bush's. This October surprise will not help John McCain, whether intended or not, for two reasons. The first is the youth vote; McCain already stands to lose by a considerable margin among this demographic, and war usually drives the youth turnout. The second issue focuses on a mindset, the anti-war mindset of most Americans. A poll conducted by CNN between 10/17 and 10/19 showed that 66% of American's already oppose the War in Iraq. If you were one of the 66% and have not decided who you are going to vote for, this attack on Syria is unlikely to push you towards McCain, regardless of his foreign policy experience.

The ramifications of this attack on Syria will not be good for America, for John McCain, and when history writes itself, for George W. Bush.

Published on October 27th at 1:58 AM CT :: 5 Comments

St. Paul Is Not Minneapolis

Based on some of the responses to our previous story I felt it necessary to clarify that the Republican Convention takes place at the Xcel Energy Center and the media headquarters will be setup at the RiverCentre Convention Center, both located in St. Paul; nothing related to the GOP Convention is officially sanctioned to occur in Minneapolis. To understand why Minneapolis has no part in the convention we must look at the history.

Before I begin I'd also like to clear two points, [1] I live in St. Paul, and [2] Minneapolis and St. Paul are separate cites, together commonly referred to as the Twin Cities (I really wish I didn't have to state this, but apparently some of our readers are ridiculously uneducated; I've provided a map below to aide those who cannot think.)

The Minneapolis St. Paul 2008 Host Committee's main purpose is to organize events within the metropolitan area. The reason the committee has both Minneapolis and St. Paul in its name is due to the proximity of the two cities. If a large event is held in one city, such as the GOP Convention in St. Paul, the other city will be affected regardless of its contribution; therefore the cities co-participate in the planning stages of all events. The Committee's members come predominately from the Twin Cities but neighboring cities such as Bloomington are also represented.

In September of 2006 the Republican National Committee recommended the bid put forth by the Minneapolis St. Paul 2008 Host Committee regarding the undertaking of the Republican Convention. Eventually the plan was agreed upon and a location was established in St. Paul. The official Minneapolis St. Paul 2008 Host Committee website explicitly states that the GOP Convention occurs in St. Paul with no reference to Minneapolis. Instead Minneapolis has their own convention, CivicFest which showcases Minnesota and American History, Democracy and the U.S. Presidency during the same time frame as the GOP Convention.

The bottom line is that any reference to the location of the Republican Convention should be inclusive rather than exclusive. This means referencing either St. Paul or the Twin Cities. The Twin Cities is acceptable because St. Paul is contained in the Twin Cities. Minneapolis is not an acceptable reference because it is an altogether separate city and is not commonly understood to inclusively include St. Paul, because it doesn't. Therefore the idiocy of the Minneapolis reference presented by myself in the previous article raging on CNN and the Pioneer Press' story highlighting the same issue are entirely valid and accurate.

Published on August 14th at 11:34 PM CT :: 0 Comments

CNN Botches GOP Convention Site

I was reading the CNN Political Ticker for some info about the Arkansas Democratic Party Chair who was killed today by a gunmen, when I stumbled upon another story. Entitled 'Another Republican senator skipping convention' the article discussed how some Republican Congressmen are staying home due to the GOP's poor image in hopes of bolstering their reelection image. Now here's the catch, CNN cites the Republican Convention as occurring in Minneapolis, rather than St. Paul. If you are reporting the location of the GOP Convention how does the thought of Minneapolis even cross your mind; [a] you are either completely incompetent (like Michelle Bachmann), or [b] well there is no logical b. In either case somebody at CNN should have caught this because it is terrible reporting. St. Paul was not chosen yesterday, it was chosen months, perhaps years ago and has been common knowledge for just as long; anybody covering politics should, without hesitation, know the site of the GOP Convention. Now for the proof, observe the area boxed in red.

Published on August 13rd at 4:57 PM CT :: 4 Comments

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