We’ve Never Before Witnessed such Chaos in the White House…

Our The VORACS updates come out twice per week on Tuesday & Friday afternoons.  With both holidays landing on Tuesday, at most the only postings we’ll have over the holidays would be next Friday.  But with family coming in, unless there’s a major breaking story on Russia next week, we plan to take a break for the holidays, so it’s likely you won’t see a new message from us until Friday, January 4th.  So let’s hope the chaos in the White House subsides over the next couple weeks, especially with the prez playing golf in Florida (if the shutdown gets resolved).  Even for Trumpeters, Christmas is the time to celebrate King Jesus, so here’s hoping King Donald can quit dominating the headlines for awhile.

Let me count the ways things are spiraling out of control.  Among the chaos in the White House just since our Tuesday message, let’s do a quick review of the people & things surrounding Trump world the past few days mired in mayhem & controversy: Syria, Afghanistan, the wall, government shutdown, stock market, Mattis, Barr, Whitaker, Stone, Flynn, Dem House is coming, Mueller report is coming, Trump Foundation closing, & other controversial head-scratching moments that space doesn’t allow us to get into all of them.  See the Mattis & Flynn stories in part 2, the wall, shutdown & market in part 3, with the rest here in part 1 below.

The Dramatic Conclusion to the Biggest Political Scandal in American History coming into View

If NBC News is right in their reporting, Mueller may finish his report within two months.  And with so much intense interest in what his probe would have found, it’s hard to imagine Whitaker could hide it from the public for long.  Here are those Mueller headlines:

https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/justice-department/mueller-may-submit-report-attorney-general-soon-mid-february-say-n949961

https://investigaterussia.org/media/2018-12-20/speculating-end-sight

Here are more quick updates on recent Russiagate articles & the extensive Chaos in the White House

More clear signals of all the confusion, panic & chaos in the White House hitting them from all directions are seen inside opinions/if-trumps-actions-arent-impeachable-then-what-is & also chuck-schumer-donald-trump-plunging-country-into-chaos & also trump-shutdown-mattis & also trump-white-house-chaos-mattis-shutdown-mueller.

Mueller is getting the House transcripts of Roger Stone’s testimonies, with signs pointing toward Stone being indicted soon: house-sending-stone-transcript-mueller.

More suspicious connections are exposed which have to do with the Trump Tower meeting: trump-tower-meeting-gets-another-intriguing-layer.

Here’s a shady way for Trump to get around those Russian sanctions: mnuchin-is-lifting-sanctions-on-manafort-russian-creditor-oleg-deripaska.  We continue to ask why is our prez always trying to keep Putin happy?: treasury-ready-lift-sanctions-deripaska-company.  The answer can be found in the Russian word kompromat.

Excellent Overview on Russiagate

This op-ed highlights the main point of the yuge scandal we’ve been watching play out.  Excepts below are pulled from the beginning & ending to the article, but it offers very perceptive viewpoints worth reading the whole thing by clicking on the-big-story-trump-russia:

Michael Flynn narrowly avoiding a prison sentence—for now. Paul Manafort stuck in the hoosegow and still tangling with special counsel Robert Mueller. The news of the Trump-Russia scandal these days has focused on the dramatic developments for several top lieutenants in Donald Trump’s crew. (And don’t forget about Roger Stone!) But whenever there is a rush of new details about one slice or another of this controversy—or the other pending or possible cases involving the Trump Foundation, the Trump Organization, the Trump inauguration, the Trump family’s alleged tax fraud, and more—it’s important for all of us (and the media) to keep the spotlight on a central element that has already been established beyond any doubt: Trump betrayed his fellow Americans. This Big Story often gets lost in the details and the ever-unfolding developments. Naturally, Trump’s alleged role in the campaign finance crimes committed by Cohen has drawn much coverage. (Federal prosecutors stated that Cohen broke the law “at the direction” of Trump: arranging hush-money payments to a porn star and a Playboy model who each alleged a sexual relationship with the president.) And the allegations of the Trump Foundation’s illegal activities certainly deserve plenty of headlines. But for more than two years, Trump has kept the paramount point of the Trump-Russia controversy—Trump’s own perfidy—from being the main theme of the narrative.

Trump has screamed “No collusion,” shrieked “Witch hunt,” and screeched “Hoax.” He has denied and lied. He has strived to make the public believe that the fundamental question is whether he directly conspired with Vladimir Putin to hack Democratic targets and disseminate the stolen material—contending that anything short of that is no big deal. And he and his minions have cooked up multiple conspiratorial distractions, ridiculously insisting Trump has been the victim of a Deep State plot. And though recent polling shows most of the public believes the president has been dishonest about the Trump-Russia investigation, he has succeeded to an extent. Given the power of Trump’s ultra-bully pulpit, he has been able to win attention for his diversions, no matter how absurd (“Obama wiretapped me!!!”). His chaff-throwing has prevented core truths of the scandal from shining through, with a big assist from Fox News and “alternative facts” disinformation. Trump and his conservative handmaids in politics and right-wing media have done everything they can to prevent a clear-eyed reckoning with what happened in 2016. Yet recent events make Trump’s already obvious treachery even more obvious. And it’s necessary for journalists and citizens to make sure this can be discerned through the dust Trump kicks up daily.

Trump aided and abetted Russia’s secret war on the United States—a war that helped shape the outcome of a narrowly decided presidential election. This is all known, and indisputable—except that these days, anything will be disputed by Trump and his followers. Even if Trump’s disputations are demonstrable lies—“I have nothing to do with Russia”—they still color and cloud the ongoing public discourse about what happened in 2016. They have prompted his supporters and his GOP comrades to reject or ignore the powerful truth of Trump’s profound betrayal, portraying it as just another debatable point in the grand chaos of the Trump years. This holiday season, though, the truth is crashing down on several of the president’s men (and one female Russian operative). And Trump’s multiple lies about the hush-money payments have been highlighted, with Trump himself practically branded an unindicted co-conspirator. As the nation heads toward the third year of the Trump-Russia scandal and the investigations get tougher to track, we must keep in mind the already-known essential fact: The man in the White House engaged in the most consequential political skullduggery in US history. That’s the sad truth—and it is a damn shame that journalists, elected officials, and citizens have to fight every day to keep it front and center in Trump’s multi-ring circus.

 

Lots of Interconnected Pieces to the Giant Jigsaw Puzzle 

A Dem House is ready to take over to seriously probe the Russia crimes, ending the stonewalling, whitewashing & diversions that Devin Nunes & the GOP House embarked on for nearly two years.  This whole article from trump-russia-congress-schiff-ukraine-zamel-cambridge-analytica emphasizes a couple critical aspects to the overall Russiagate probe we haven’t heard much about in media reports:

On January 3, 2019, House Democrats will exercise oversight of President Trump for the first time since his election. Democratic Congressmen Adam Schiff, Jerrold Nadler, and Elijah Cummings—the new committee chairs of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, House Judiciary Committee, and House Committee on Government Oversight and Reform, respectively—have wisely chosen investigation over impeachment as their first order of business. A review of major-media investigative reports from around the world confirms that an untrammeled, nonpartisan, comprehensive investigation of Trump-Russia collusion will unearth significant evidence of criminality. But sworn testimony to this effect must be taken before proceeding to the controversial question of impeachment. With this in mind, there are two subjects Congress should immediately move to investigate. Both lines of inquiry require the production of documents by individuals previously permitted to remain beyond the purview of Congressional subpoena, and sworn testimony from witnesses who have either never been called to testify or have been allowed to avoid truthfully answering difficult questions.

First, Congress must investigate the March 31, 2016 National Security Advisory Committee meeting Trump held at the Trump International Hotel in Washington, D.C. At this meeting, Trump directed his advisers to ensure that the Republican National Committee platform on Ukraine would take a clear stance opposing lethal assistance to anti-Kremlin rebels there—a major victory for Vladimir Putin, who illegally annexed Ukraine’s Crimean peninsula in 2014. At the same meeting, Trump also learned that his adviser George Papadopoulos was an intermediary to the Kremlin, and, with a Kremlin agent’s blessing, was seeking to arrange a clandestine summit between Trump and Putin. Instead of firing Papadopoulos and reporting him to the FBI, Trump promoted him to his speechwriting team and made him a key campaign spokesman on Russia. Media reports now indicate that three of the meeting’s attendees told Special Counsel Robert Mueller that former Attorney General Jeff Sessions did not, as he insisted to Congress under oath, object to Papadopoulos’ secret negotiations. Moreover, Kremlin agent and former Paul Manafort associate Konstantin Kilimnick, with whom Manafort was in touch during the 2016 campaign, later took credit for the RNC platform’s language on Ukraine—underscoring that obtaining more information on this change and the meeting at which it was first discussed are critical. And if Trump aide John Mashburn was telling the truth when he told Congress that Papadopoulos first informed the campaign in spring 2016 that the Kremlin had acquired stolen Clinton emails, Trump’s demand for a pro-Kremlin RNC platform on Ukraine, and his and Sessions’ decision to permit Papadopoulos to continue secretly meeting with Kremlin agents, becomes key evidence of collusion.

A second area of inquiry involves spring 2018 reporting from the New York Times that on August 3, 2016, Donald Trump Jr. met in Trump Tower with George Nader, an emissary from the Crown Princes of Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates; Erik Prince, a Trump national security adviser and later an envoy from Trump to a top Russian oligarch; and Joel Zamel, an Israeli business intelligence expert with ties to both Russian oligarchs and Israeli intelligence officers. At the meeting, both Nader and Zamel offered collusive assistance to Trump’s campaign; according to the Times, Trump Jr. reacted favorably to both offers. Zamel, who had in the past attempted to recruit Trump national security adviser Mike Flynn into his intelligence-gathering outfit, offered Trump Jr. a clandestine propaganda and domestic disinformation campaign that mirrored the one Russian trolls ultimately delivered in the final three months of the general election. The fact that Zamel would, immediately after Election Day, strike a business partnership with Trump’s campaign data-firm—the Steve Bannon-founded Cambridge Analytica—underscores that this August 3, 2016 meeting at Trump Tower must be investigated every bit as robustly as the infamous June 9, 2016 Trump Tower meeting Trump Jr. also attended. Notably, Jared Kushner not only attended  the latter meeting but also meetings during the presidential transition that were intended as follow-ups to the former. These meetings, attended by Bannon as well as Flynn, suggest an even broader collusive agreement among powerful interests in Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Russia, Israel, and Qatar. If the Steele dossier and relevant reporting since its January 2017 publication are to be believed, Kushner personally benefited from this collusion in the form of hundreds of millions in Qatari Investment Authority-backed loans. This means that not only Trump’s historically pro-Russia foreign policy, but also certain policy decisions Trump made in 2017 and 2018 that were favorable to Saudi Arabia, the UAE, and Israel must be investigated.

It will take months for a transparent and thorough Congressional investigation of Trump-Russia collusion to wipe away the memory of two years of House Republicans’ stonewalling, disinformation, suppression of evidence, and surreptitious cooperation with White House obstructers—the president included. But if the American people are to regain their trust in the equal application of our rule of law, Democrats must move swiftly to pursue these and other significant investigatory leads uncovered by major media outlets following the 2016 election.

Loyal Trumpeters Totally Miss the Point

His supporters are as clueless as he is!  Even for those who make the absurd assertions what we’re seeing is just Trump being Trump, or they’re willing to overlook his many indiscretions since he gave them a conservative court or they think (incorrectly) Trump policies led to a strong economy, they’re completely missing the bigger picture.  In believing their prez is fighting for a preferred agenda on their behalf, they’re willing to excuse a level of dishonesty, corruption & increasingly signs of criminality far beyond anything Americans have ever witnessed before.  The evil demons now being unleashed on our nation are in condoning the actions of an American President operating without integrity, morality, human decency or conscience.  Our nation may be crossing the Rubicon into tolerating lawlessness, demagoguery & fascism from which we might never recover.  Naive starry-eyed Trumpeters are totally oblivious to these imminent & frightening dangers.

So while the Trump cult gives him a pass on deplorable behavior & the rampant chaos in the White House, back in the real world the rest of us are alarmed!  Inside this link is an article about the next article below: I-had-no-idea-how-immoral-Trump-actually-is.  Those of us who could clearly detect the personal flaws of Trump during the 2016 campaign knew he didn’t have anywhere near the qualities we need in our president, but as these articles smartly articulate, it’s turned out far worse than even we could have ever anticipated.  That important op-ed in its entirety from it-is-so-much-worse-than-i-thought is posted here:

I will be going on book leave soon — today is my last column for a while because of the holiday schedule — to write what I believe to be the most important thing that I’ve ever written. No, it’s not about Donald Trump, just in case you were wondering. But since I have written almost exclusively about Trump for more than two years, please allow me this parting assessment: It is so much worse than I thought. My original objections to Trump, the things that pushed me into the Resistance, were his immorality, dishonesty, fraudulence and grift. I freely admit now that I was seeing only the pointy edge of an enormous machine. I had no idea how immoral Trump actually is.

The same month that Trump pulled the outrageous stunt of inviting women who had accused Bill Clinton of inappropriate sexual behavior to his debate with Hillary Clinton, his personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, apparently under his instructions, facilitated a $130,000 payment to the porn star Stormy Daniels to prevent her from telling America that she had a sexual encounter with Trump, who was married with a small child. This payment was a few months after Cohen had helped arrange a $150,000 deal between American Media Inc., the parent company of The National Enquirer, to buy the story of the Playboy model Karen McDougal, who also claimed a sexual relationship with Trump. According to prosecutors, both were campaign finance violations — federal crimes — and now a judge has sentenced Cohen to three years in prison for that and other crimes.

The fact that Trump would be directly implicated in a federal crime that took place on the verge of the election and may have helped hand that election to him is mind-blowing to me. Trump, for his part, lied about these payments and denied them — while also having those around him lie about them on his behalf — until he could simply no longer lie about them anymore. Then came the roulette wheel of revolving explanations that makes one dizzy because of their silliness. Just this week, the Trump Foundation agreed to dissolve under pressure from the New York attorney general, who found that the foundation functioned “as little more than a checkbook to serve Mr. Trump’s business and political interests” and engaged in “a shocking pattern of illegality,” including coordinating with Trump’s presidential campaign. How can a family that can’t run a charity run a country?

But of course, that is not all. Nearly every aspect of Trump’s life is now under investigation for wrongdoing, something I could not have foreseen. I could not have predicted the extraordinary lengths to which the president would go to obstruct justice and undermine the rule of law, nor that he would do these things in full view, for everyone to see. I could not have predicted, when I first wrote that Trump was a pathological liar, that his rate of lying would increase with his time in office, rather than decrease. As The Washington Post Fact Checker put it in September: “Trump’s tsunami of untruths helped push the count in The Fact Checker’s database past 5,000 on the 601st day of his presidency. That’s an average of 8.3 Trumpian claims a day, but in the past nine days — since our last update — the president has averaged 32 claims a day. When we first started this project for the president’s first 100 days, he averaged 4.9 claims a day. He passed the 2,000 mark on Jan. 10 — eight months ago.” Just this month, the newspaper’s Fact Checker was forced to create a new category of lying just for the Trump era: the “Bottomless Pinocchio” for “when a politician refuses to drop a claim that has been fact checked as three or four Pinocchios, keeps saying it over and over and over again, so that it basically becomes disinformation, propaganda.”

I could not have predicted the overwhelming number of contacts that would have existed between people in Trump’s orbit and the Russians during the campaign, or the number of people who would take plea deals and ultimately be charged, indicted or convicted of lying about those contacts. I couldn’t have predicted any of it, but here we are, and the president, his congressional backers and his citizen supporters are continuing to tell us that this doesn’t matter as much as we think, that this is a politically driven prosecution, that everyone does what Trump has done. They are all wrong. This is huge, and the longer we pretend that it isn’t, the more damage we do to the health and stability of our own country. While I am away, I will enjoy not having to follow the hourly insanities too closely, but every day I will worry about the republic in which we live. Trump has the capacity to damage or even destroy it. That’s not hyperbole. That’s an observation informed by a close reading of history.

 

Trump Foundation Charitable Donations went to Trump & His Cronies

Those who donated expected the money to go to charities.  Do these sound like charities?  Trump using the funds to pay his lawsuit judgments, contributing to campaigns of political allies, buying portraits of himself & a signed Tim Tebow helmet, & other such personal purchases.  It even helped pay sonny-boy jr’s fee to join the Boy Scouts.  If all this strong evidence is proven, then yes, our president is a crook, as more details are seen in trump-foundation-dissolves-trump-white-house-ethics-abuses-continue.

On the other hand, another way to look at this, it’s a shame to see the demise of the Trump Foundation.  Those charitable funds will no longer be able to go to those who need it the least.  This entire article from no-not-trump-foundation bemoans the loss of this once-great civic organization: 

The loss of the Trump Foundation is a blow to us all. Too few people accept the premise that the best way to help those in need is by giving rich people more money to spend. And by too few people I mean, sadly, only a slight majority of the current Congress; that is still not EVERYONE. Alas for the one foundation that took this giving philosophy and applied it in the realm of philanthropy. Why should giving more to those with much be the exclusive province of the distributor of tax breaks? The Trump Foundation looked around this country and thought about its most pressing problems, and understood that the answer was: Billionaires in general, and the Trump family in particular, need more money at their disposal. Think of all the Trumps this foundation helped. Donald, Donald Jr., a business associate of Trump’s, a Trump-affiliated fountain, a tower, Pam Bondi. Think of all the millions who benefited from these actions — millions, that is, of dollars that Donald Trump did not have to spend and were able to stay happily united with their friends in his investment vehicles, or wherever it is that we think they are, not having seen his tax returns.

Yet it is not just the money that was allowed to remain with its friends that was a direct beneficiary of this charity. Countless people benefited from the charitable work the Trump Foundation did. An oil portrait of Donald Trump that could have run feral and terrorized thousands was contained and placed on the wall of a Trump golf club where it could do no harm, except to itself (mysteriously dropping in value from 700 to zero dollars, alas; one dares not speculate). And it was by means of this organization that the Boy Scouts received the priceless gift of exactly enough money to buy Donald Trump Jr.’s scout membership — a gift that spared the dozens of similar organizations he might have joined, as well as their countless members, the joy of his company. It is difficult to count the number of heartbreaking GoFundMe campaigns have been started by families determined that, even though they had recently suffered terrible medical setbacks, Donald Trump’s businesses should not have to pay legal fees. Thanks to the Trump Foundation, those poor businesses’ wishes came true. Most charities focus on obvious charitable causes — people who need clean water, or medical care, or a safe place to live. The Trump Foundation focused on people who are not sure that any of those things are necessary.

The Trump Foundation heard the tale of a man, reputed to be a billionaire, who needed to pay some legal bills and was at loose ends, and the foundation was naturally moved. How could any foundation be anything but moved by such a tale? Of course they would pay for his private business’s legal settlement. And when it turned out that by some coincidence he and they had the same name, it seemed almost like fate. Now, what of the billionaires? What of the billionaires struggling to make it between the covers of Forbes? What of the billionaires without two yachts to rub together? Where will they turn? I weep for all the nonprofits that have been working hard on grant applications to the Trump Foundation, showing exactly how their project will benefit the Trump family. This must have taken time and effort, especially for organizations with missions not immediately or obviously aligned with the Trump family plan (“Conserving the habitat of the spotted owl could, someday, provide valuable real estate for a potential Trump investment, and we will send everyone in the family a festive hat.”) The Trump Foundation’s unique approach to charitable giving will be missed. With it gone, when impecunious billionaires or struggling, hungry business associates of Donald Trump’s need help making ends meet, where will they be able to turn? On what resources can they possibly fall back?

Echo Always Tries to Put the Clintons on Trump’s Level

But it doesn’t wash with any of their silly conspiracies.  One popular deflection we hear from the adoring echo & Trumpeters tries to paint the Clinton Foundation being as criminally-corrupt as the Trump Foundation, which is more like comparing a shoplifter to an armed robber.  Such an obvious false equivalency is nonsensical & asinine: Heh-What-about-the-Clinton-Foundation-huh?.

The Trump Foundation investigation by the state of NY is currently a civil suit, but can turn into a criminal case if serious crimes are uncovered.  That debate still swirls whether a sitting president can be indicted, but even if he’s afforded that protection, his adult kids or the corporate/foundation entity could be brought up on criminal charges.  So there are some strong signals this could soon turn into a criminal investigation as seen in veteran-trial-attorney-on-trump-foundation-scandal-it-is-going-to-become-a-criminal-matter.  Rubin makes several good points about the potential criminal liability inside why-not-indict-trump-organization, which posted here is just the beginning & ending to the article:

Legal scholars debate whether a sitting president can be indicted or only impeached. If the latter, it’s not clear given the statutes of limitation on most crimes whether he could ever be prosecuted for certain crimes. That surely seems wrong; the framers certainly did not intend to give the president a get-out-of-jail free card for crimes he might commit in office. (One solution might be to indict under seal.) What is clear, however, is that to the extent the president has a safe harbor for prosecution during his time in office, that protection is personal to him. His relatives and his business empire don’t get that benefit. Indict a corporation (or a foundation or an LLC)? That’s what happened to the accounting firm Arthur Andersen in connection with the Enron scandal. The firm itself was indicted on a charge of alleged widespread obstruction of justice.

Going after the Trump Organization, if facts warrant, should be an arrow in Mueller’s quiver. The stronger the case for not prosecuting a president, the stronger the case, if evidence proves wrongdoing, to go after his corporate organization from which Trump operated. (Talk about crossing a red line, right?) Granted, indictment of Trump’s eponymous company, a company so closely and completely identified with Trump personally, might increase Congress’s willingness to indict and remove Trump from office for conduct for which he couldn’t presently be prosecuted. (Mueller wouldn’t even need to put all his information in a report if the alleged crimes are detailed in a series of legal filings including indictment of Trump’s company.) That, however, is a matter of political speculation dependent on all sorts of future events. For now, follow the money — and look for the entity or the people signing the checks and financial documents.

The Hopelessly Corrupt Whitaker

Despite the ethics lawyers within the DOJ suggesting Whitaker recuse himself from the Russia case, he refused to do so.  Instead he consulted with a core group of henchmen within the DOJ who were his key allies & they gave him the OK.  This whole thing smells.  We need to monitor this Trump puppet to push back against his trying to sabotage the Mueller probe.  Whitaker could be the first witness hauled before the Dem House in a couple weeks.  Between Whitaker & Barr who both expressed extremely anti-Mueller views, that very reason why Trump appointed these two AG’s in the first place should be regarded as committing obstruction of justice.  These first two links on Whitaker are live & the others you could search for:

https://www.politico.com/story/2018/12/20/matthew-whitaker-recusal-russia-investigation-1071488

https://thehill.com/homenews/administration/422268-whitaker-will-not-recuse-from-mueller-probe

washingtonpost/ethics-officials-say-whitaker-need-not-recuse-from-supervising-special-counsel-probe-according-to-a-person-familiar-with-the-matter

salon/whitaker-cleared-to-oversee-mueller-probe-but-an-ethics-adviser-recommended-he-step-aside-report

nymag/trump-building-a-team-of-lackeys-to-go-to-war-with-mueller

investigaterussia/whitaker-wont-recuse

Trump’s New AG Pick not likely to get Senate Confirmation

Not after we find out he sent a letter a few months ago unsolicited to the DOJ bashing the Mueller probe.  It was really meant for an audience of one to impress Trump for the job.  His bias is showing & Barr should get rejected by the Senate.  It may not matter if the Mueller report really gets finished by mid-February, since Barr wouldn’t get confirmed & be in charge up to that point anyway.  So it’s really Whitaker we need to watch.  Since we’re needing to limit outbound links, here are Barr articles if you want to look them up:

huffingtonpost/william-barr-mueller-investigation

nymag/trump-william-barr-memo-mueller-obstruction-justice

thedailybeast/william-barrs-memo-about-mueller-parrots-trumps-own-argument-he-cant-obstruct-justice

vox/mueller-barr-memo-rosenstein-obstruction-trump

slate/trump-attorney-general-barr-critical-memo-mueller-investigation-obstruction-justice-department

washingtonpost/why-william-barr-is-wrong-on-the-mueller-probe

Perplexing Syria Decision

ISIS has been weakened but still out there!  Some decision on a whim pulling troops out of Syria will only strengthen ISIS to regroup & recruit.  It’s also a betrayal of the Kurdish fighters who fought the brave battles for us on the ground.  Trump is also bowing to the wishes of rogue dictators in Russia, Iran & Turkey.  Most of all, it weakens America, our allies, our perceived leadership & the cause of peace/freedom around the world.  Trump announced his decision out of the blue on video without the recommendations of our military & intelligence leaders, while he didn’t even bother negotiating the terms of the withdraw with our allies to better protect our interests.  Same thing with wanting to leave Afghanistan.  This is irresponsible…& stupid!

This looks a lot like two other presidential blunders that emboldened our enemies.  There was George W’s “Mission Accomplished” photo op on an aircraft carrier & Obama pulling out of Iraq too soon.  Even a Fox & Friends host called out Trump for refounding ISIS in Syria!  So who is Trump listening to?  Has Trump turned into a dovish powder puff like Rand Paul?  Or is he hopelessly compromised & needs to stay in the good graces of his buddy Putin?  And the prez cannot speak for our dead soldiers when he claims they would favor a pullout!  Pulling out could undo all the sacrifices they made.  These first 3 links are live & the other 3 aren’t:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2018/12/20/trumps-syria-bug-out-heres-just-how-illogical-dangerous-he-is/?utm_term=.f1ef8fcc96b3

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2018/12/21/trump-is-now-forging-foreign-policy-his-own-where-will-he-take-us/?utm_term=.588e1ac6e8ee

https://www.buzzfeednews.com/article/mikegiglio/trump-withdrawal-syria-shock-allies

thehill/russia-iran-and-turkey-will-step-into-vacuum-us-leaves-in-syria

businessinsider/republicans-furious-over-trump-decision-to-withdraw-troops-from-syria

investigaterussia/trump-issues-suspicious-syria-demand

A Number of Other News Stories on Our Foreign Dangers that are Truly Terrifying, especially with Trump at the Helm

Trump is also paring back troops from Afghanistan, opening the door for the Taliban to expand their power & influence: national-security/trump-agitating-for-major-military-withdrawal-from-afghanistan-advisers-say

The extent of the Russian interference was massive: how-russians-attacked-americas-democracy-editorial

It’s looking increasingly likely the enormous amount of Russian intrusion swayed the election: scholar-kathleen-hall-jamieson-very-strong-case-that-the-russians-swung-the-2016-election

Trump’s bumbling diplomacy has ratcheted up the risk of nuclear war:

https://thehill.com/policy/international/422218-putin-warns-dont-estimate-nuclear-war-threat

https://www.salon.com/2018/12/20/north-korea-and-russia-issue-separate-warnings-about-nuclear-arms-ahead-of-the-new-year/

Chaos in the White House could be the Lead-In to the End of the Trump Presidency

So check back here at The VORACS in a week or two.  We’re hoping Trump can stay out of the headlines long enough so we can avoid politics & enjoy the holidays.  We’ll be back January 4th unless there’s bombshell news next week.  Our commentary & posts from the newsfeeds have demonstrated a track record far more accurate than Fox fake news or the rest of the right-wing echo, so please do share with others.  People can trust us as a credible source for Trump news.

With the Dems taking over the House in two weeks & Mueller’s report could be ready in two months, plus the separate investigations being done by New York, 2019 promises to be very eventful.  Following the money will be a key to cracking these cases.  I predict the lid will be blown off the Trump criminal enterprise & he’ll be forced to relinquish the presidency.  But we must go wherever the facts lead us.  Stay tuned.  And in the wise words of Jennifer Rubin: americans-have-had-enough!