Herbert London

Herbert London: The Rise of Utopians Amid Miserabilism

Jun 22, 2016

Based on events in Orlando the words of French writer Andre Breton have a certain strange poignancy. Andre Breton, anarchist and the founder of surrealism, which he defined as “pure psychic automatism.” Breton was fixated on a “new reality,” one that considers the destructive, undermining effects on the individual. He called it “Miserabilism” – “the depreciation of reality in place of its exaltation.” Here in capsule form is the plight of the West. Maxim Gorky noted, “A miserable being must find a more miserable being. Then he is happy.” Schadenfreude afflicts us.

Herbert London: Obama’s Strategic Patience

Jun 15, 2016

It is fairly obvious based on all accounts that the Chinese government will create a formal air defense identification zone (ADIZ) in the South China Sea. According to a well placed Chinese source, the formal declaration will depend on U.S. military presence in the region and China’s relationship with her neighbors.

Herbert London: The Obama Conundrum

Jun 8, 2016

Since 2009, well before official P5+1 formal negotiations, President Barack Obama was willfully engaged in a plan to achieve an accord with Iran on nuclear questions. It became a matter of pride for the president to contend that he was able to negotiate on accord that his predecessors could not. Yet the president has created a paradoxical box for himself in which the Iranian agreement – leaving aside its merits or lack thereof – forces him to be complicit in assisting Iranian foreign policy.

If one believes the fantasy conjured by the vivid imagination of Ben Rhodes, President Obama’s Deputy National Security Adviser, the Iranians who have negotiated the nuclear deal with the P5+1 are “moderates”, different from the Supreme Leader the other and extremists in this revolutionary nation. Most significantly, these “moderates” can be trusted.

Herbert London: Militant Islam

May 25, 2016

 

The war against militant Islamic forces continues apace with modest gains against ISIS and with the emergence of new radical groups after one is defeated. This is a long war we are engaged in, one that can be won only when the root cause is accurately identified. That cause is a doctrine, a doctrine of violence and subordination. It is built into the culture of militates Islam and our unwillingness to recognize it for what it is militants against remedial action.

Herbert London: Ressentiment

May 18, 2016

In philosophy and psychology “ressentiment” is a form of hostility. It is the French word for resentment and it generally is directed at the cause of frustration, that is an assignment of blame for one’s frustration. A sense of weakness or inferiority and jealously in the face of the “cause” generates a rejecting or justifying value system, even a moral paradigm which attacks the perceived source of frustration. This value system can be used as a means of justifying one’s own weakness by identifying the source of envy as objectively inferior. In many cases, the ego creates an enemy in order to insulate itself from culpability.

Herbert London: Trump Foreign Policy

May 11, 2016

Now that Trump is the presumptive Republican candidate for president, a review of his recent foreign policy position seems warranted. Trump played his presidential “part” well, to paraphrase his newly appointed aide, Charlie Manaford in a speech that was a serious attempt to articulate his foreign policy stance.

Herbert London: Saudi Arabia - U.S. Foe And Friend

May 4, 2016

In the case of China it is not clear if they are foe or friend with an argument to be made on both sides of the issue. In the case of Saudi Arabia there is little doubt it is foe and friend, a matter that has led to extraordinary confusion.

Herbert London: The Void

Apr 27, 2016

Deployments of U.S. forces continues despite the claims of drawdown and withdrawal. The numbers may be on the decline and the use of Special Forces may be on the rise, but the issue that is emerging is why are our military forces in harms way at all. From Rand Paul to Barack Obama, from Donald Trump to Mr. and Mrs. John Q. Public, many are asking a fundamental question: What is the benefit to the United States of overseas deployments? It was once a question easily addressed within the context of the Cold War. But at a time when there is a quagmire in the Middle East and modest European expenditures for self-defense, the question emerging directly, and often inadvertently, is why the U.S. is burdened with defending the civilization. Why is President Obama now sending an additional 250 troops into Syria?

Notwithstanding all of the commentary to the contrary, the Iraqi army assisted by U.S. Special Forces is putting the Islamic State on the defensive in Iraq. In fact, the Iraqi army is poised to retake the northern province of Nineveh and may soon gain control of Mosul, the province’s largest city and a militant stronghold. This is the good news, but it is not the whole story.

Herbert London: Civilizational Conflict

Apr 13, 2016

The world is on edge. Tectonic change is occurring before our eyes. While the shifts are profound it will require historical analysis in the future to sort it all out. However, there are things we know, conditions that are transforming global affairs.

Herbert London: The Lesson Of Lahore

Apr 6, 2016

In a statement that reveals yet again how out of touch the administration is, Josh Earnest, White House spokesman, said that the massive suicide bombing in Lahore, in which 70 people were killed and about 300 injured, didn’t simply target Christians since many Muslims were victims as well.

If ever there was a need for U.S. diplomatic intervention in Middle East, this is the moment. Instead of sitting on the sidelines as a disinterested observer, Kerry and Company should be on a plane to Cairo to discuss an emerging schism in Saudi – Egyptian relations. In February, the Saudi kingdom announced that it was prepared to send ground troops to Syria to fight alongside the international coalition. Cairo objected.

Herbert London: The Russians Are Going

Mar 23, 2016

There was a Hollywood film of yesteryear with the title “The Russians Are Coming.” If one were making that film today it might be called “The Russians Are Going.” In a move that has surprised many in our State Department, Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered the withdrawal of the “main part” of the Russian military contingent from Syria. He noted that the principal tasks “for the armed forces were accomplished,” i.e. stabilizing the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

The stabbing spree in Israel by Palestinian terrorists continues unabated. Even when an American citizen visiting Israel is killed “What me worry? President Obama” is unfazed. At this point in his presidency Obama has only one goal: burnishing his legacy.

Herbert London: Iran Vs. Saudi Arabia

Mar 9, 2016

The trial and subsequent execution of Shiite cleric Nimr al-Nimir has led to a storm of protest leading to the destruction of the Saudi embassy in Tehran. While Iranian president Hassan Rouhani condemned the attacks as “unjustifiable,” this statement did not mollify Saudi leaders. In fact, the Saudi foreign minister said his nation is severing all diplomatic ties with Iran. Iran’s supreme leader warned that the execution will result in “divine vengeance.”

Herbert London: Crumbling Of Western Culture

Mar 2, 2016

Cultural symbols matter and what they now suggest is that the West is in retreat. This is a retreat in every aspect of life, from religion to popular culture. “Out of respect” for the Iranian president, who presumably would be offended by nudity, the Italian government had museum officials in Rome’s Capitoline place boxes over several nude statues - including one of Venus created in the second century BC - during Hassan Rouhani’s state visit.

Herbert London: Europe’s Civil War

Feb 24, 2016

The civil war has begun. This is not a war recognized by European leaders. In fact, they deny it exists. But the evidence is now overwhelming. Europeans want to take their countries back from foreign invaders who are often criminals.

Herbert London: Selling Out

Feb 17, 2016

In its emphasis on defeating ISIS, the U.S. delegation in Geneva has sold out the rebels fighting against Syria’s Bashar al-Assad. A new chapter in the Middle East has unfolded as America’s perceived interests have tilted in the direction of Iran and Russia. Instead of a transitional government that would ease the Syrian dictator out of power, Secretary of State Kerry said there should be a national unity government for the foreseeable future – a euphemism for Assad stays. In fact, that is the essence of the recently signed cease-fire accord.

The winds of change in Europe have circled back to the 1930’s as public attitudes have grown dark and bitter. It was recently reported that more than forty percent of European Union citizens hold anti-Semitic views and agree with the oft repeated claim that Israel is committing genocidal acts against Palestinians. In fact, there is the common refrain that Israelis are the new Nazis.

From 2009 to the present, the Obama administration has been committed to the withdrawal of American forces from the Middle East, replaced by the management of regional state players. But this position is entirely ahistoric. From the Romans to the Crusades, from the Mamelukes, to the Ottomans, British and French, the Middle East never ruled itself or managed stability through nation states.

Herbert London: Europe’s Migration Cancer

Jan 27, 2016

Roberta Flack, years earlier, sang what has become the Europeans theme song “Killing Me Softly.” Despite the reported wilding spree of at least a thousand North African refugees who groped women at the New Year celebration in Cologne, Germany, despite allegations of two rapes, despite condemnation by Prime Minister Merkel, the mayor of the city has requested that women monitor their “code of conduct.” Apparently German authorities will contest to their last breath that tolerance dedication will not yield. This is the tolerance that kills, softly at first and violently in time.

Although they often disagreed, John Adams and Thomas Jefferson had a mutually agreeable conversation – when the mantle of authority was being transferred (1800) – over the impressment of American seaman by Muslim leaders in North Africa. As U.S. commercial interests in the Mediterranean increased at the beginning of the 19th century, our ships were seized and seamen were forced into imprisonment and slavery.

Herbert London: Islamophobia & Political Correctness

Jan 12, 2016

In accordance with a ten year plan of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) to implement United Nations’ Resolution 16/18 which criminalizes all criticism of Islam worldwide, the U.S. House of Representatives issued H. Res. 569 condemning violence, bigotry and “hateful rhetoric” toward Muslims in the United States.

Herbert London: Los Abandonados Of Argentina

Jan 6, 2016

In 1994 the western hemisphere suffered its worst terrorist attack up to that time. A massive car bombing destroyed the Asociación Mutual Israelita Argentina (AMIA), the Argentine Jewish Mutual Aid Society, killing 85 people and leaving hundreds wounded.

Herbert London: Perversion Of Islam?

Dec 30, 2015

In what can only be described as a “reassurance” speech is, President Obama in addressing the terrorist murders in San Bernardino, California said we should not be overcome by fear. Once again, he noted this terror is not a reflection of Islam. His Attorney General, Loretta Lynch, went further in contending that the real fear is anti Islamic prejudice, even though there is little evidence to support her concern.

Herbert London: Why Belief And Foreign Policy Matter

Dec 23, 2015

In his magnificent book, The Roots of American Order, Russell Kirk cites five cities which have given us our rich heritage and from which we have created an exceptional civilization: Athens, Jerusalem, Rome, London and Philadelphia. Kirk offers a philosophically panoramic view. From Jerusalem came the order of the soul and leading a purposeful life. From Athens emerged the order of mind and how one ought to live. From Rome came an understanding of personal virtue. From London, our concepts of common law, private property and constitutional order were formulated. And from Philadelphia emerged the protection of individual rights and the understanding of liberty within a framework of law.

Herbert London: Iran Cheats Again

Dec 16, 2015

Despite the murder of at least 1200 Americans, including service personnel at Khobar Towers; despite lying about its nuclear weapons program; despite the largest terrorist attack in the western hemisphere before 9/11 that killed 85 Argentinians; despite support for Hamas and Hezbollah attacks against Israel; despite trumped up charges  against Americans who have been imprisoned or murdered; despite being a refuge for al Qaeda leadership; despite the apparent murder of Alberto Nisman who was investigating the terror attack in Buenos Aires; despite the cries of “death to America;” despite repeated cyber attacks against the U.S. ; despite the export of weapons to Syria and Yemen in violation of the arms embargo; despite the egregious violation of the nuclear accord with the UN Security Council with the testing of nuclear capable ICBMs; despite all of this and so much more that hasn’t been mentioned, the United States continues to assert that with the nuclear deal now completed – albeit still not signed by Iranian leaders – Iran will enter the ranks of a responsible nation.

Microaggression, or a slight intended or unintended, has influenced public discourse from universities to world leaders. Yet it is interesting to note some slights are acceptable and others are not. It is considered inappropriate to use an adjective such as militant or radical to modify the noun Islam. However, it is increasingly appropriate to use the expression Zionist aggression, even when most Israeli military activity is defensive – a retaliation for violence inflicted on the Jewish state.

Herbert London: The Art Of War

Dec 2, 2015

In Sun Tzu’s The Art of War present Chinese military strategy in the South China Sea comes into focus. Tzu argued that the best war is one not waged, one in which the cleverest leader wins without fighting.

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