Trump’s ‘Pocahontas’ quip at Navajo code talker event sparks backlash  

At a ceremony that was supposed to be about honoring American heroes, President Trump, in an aside, took a verbal swipe at Senator Elizabeth Warren. It was an ungracious act, not in keeping with the spirit of the occasion, but by itself not a major breach of etiquette. His choice of words in reference to her, however, was inappropriate to say the least:

During an Oval Office event honoring Native American code talkers for their service during World War II Monday, President Donald Trump made a quip about Sen. Elizabeth Warren, terming her ‘Pocahontas’ in an aside that received swift backlash shortly afterward.

“We have a representative in Congress who has been here for a long time … longer than you. They call her Pocahontas!” Trump said, referring to the Native American woman who married an English settler in Virginia in the early 1600s. Though Trump did not name Warren, D-Mass., Monday, he has previously used the nickname Pocahontas in reference to her.

During her first run for U.S. Senate in 2012, the Boston Herald reported that Warren registered as a minority in law school directories in the 1980s. Warren defended herself by claiming she was told of her Native American ancestry by family members and that the registry was made in order to meet persons with similar backgrounds, rather than to advance her career.

In an interview with MSNBC shortly after Trump made the remark Monday, Warren said that it was “deeply unfortunate that the president of the United States cannot even make it through a ceremony honoring these heroes without having to throw out a racial slur.”

“Fellow Massachusetts Sen. Ed Markey defended Warren via Twitter Monday afternoon, agreeing that what was said in the Oval Office was a ‘slur’ that disparaged ‘the Native American war heroes, standing right beside the president, who risked their lives to protect his right to make such a disgusting comment.'”

And the Alliance of Colonial Era Tribes, an association of American Indian nations, also took exception to Trump’s Pocahontas comment, “noting earlier denunciations by Native Americans when the president previously invoked the name Pocahontas in a way that denigrates others.”

“The name becomes a derogatory racial reference when used as an insult,” reads part of the statement from Dr. J.R. Norwood, the ACET’s general secretary. “American Indian names, whether they be historic or contemporary, are not meant to be used as insults. To do so is to reduce them to racial slurs.”

Absolutely!

The Trump dossier was Clinton’s dirtiest political trick  

New York Post columnist Michael Goodwin writes:

And so the worm turns. Make that worms.

Just as key congressional panels open new probes into the still-smoking debris of last year’s election, the revelation that Hillary Clinton’s campaign and the Democratic National Committee paid as much as $9 million for the discredited Russian dossier on Donald Trump flips the collusion script on its head.

Now it’s Democrats’ turn in the barrel.

In short, we now have compelling evidence that the dossier was the largest and dirtiest dirty trick of the 2016 campaign. And Clinton, who has played the victim card ever since her loss, was behind it the whole time.

Anybody surprised? Me neither.

And here’s another thing that spells trouble ahead for Clinton and the DNC:

Hillary Clinton’s campaign and the Democratic National Committee violated campaign finance law by failing to disclose payments for a dossier on Donald Trump, according to a complaint filed Wednesday with the Federal Election Commission.

The complaint from the nonprofit Campaign Legal Center said the Democrats effectively hid the payments from public scrutiny, contrary to the requirements of federal law. By law, campaign and party committees must disclose the reason money is spent and its recipient.

“By filing misleading reports, the DNC and Clinton campaign undermined the vital public information role of campaign disclosures,” said Adav Noti, senior director of trial litigation and strategy at CLC and a former FEC official. “Voters need campaign disclosure laws to be enforced so they can hold candidates accountable for how they raise and spend money. The FEC must investigate this apparent violation and take appropriate action.”

The situation developing here is a classic case of what goes around comes around.

Shrinks march for ‘narcissistic’ Trump’s removal from office  

More than 120 psychologists have staged a public protest, demanding President Trump’s removal from office “based on a constitutional clause allowing presidents to be ousted when their cabinets decide they are ‘unable to discharge the powers and duties’ of their job.”

The psychologists are questioning Trump’s state of mind, the way he ‘resists’ and ‘retaliates’ against the slightest criticism, which they say is an indication of a narcissistic personality.

Under Trump, the Islamic State is as good as dead  

Opinion contributor to The Hill Buck Sexton writes that “ISIS’s reign of terror is rapidly coming to an end,” and that “within a matter of days, the jihadist menace that shocked the world for years with its pathological sadism will lose its final strongholds within the Syrian city of Raqqa.” He notes that “it has taken 5 months of bloody struggle but the de facto capital of the Islamic State will soon be entirely in the hands of the U.S.-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF).”

And Sexton gives credit to the Trump administration for seizing the opportunity and accelerating “the anti-ISIS fight so there would be no more delays. Now, the caliphate’s days are truly numbered.”

America’s Political Divide Intensified Under Obama, and Continues Under Trump

From The Atlantic:

Disagreement among Republican and Democratic voters on a range of political issues has risen sharply in recent years, a political divide that intensified during the first year of President Trump’s administration, according to a new report from the Pew Research Center.

“The divisions between Republicans and Democrats on fundamental political values — on government, race, immigration, national security, environmental protection, and other areas — reached record levels during Barack Obama’s presidency,” Pew’s report states. “In Donald Trump’s first year as president, these gaps have grown even larger.”

Wiretaps May Prove Trump Right — and That’s Absolutely Terrifying

According to New York Post columnist Michael Goodwin, a threat to Donald Trump’s presidency has “gained new steam” with reports “that special counsel Robert Mueller had wiretapped former Trump campaign boss Paul Manafort and plans to indict him.”

Goodwin writes:

According to CNN, which first carried the wiretapping report, Manafort was surveilled under a FISA warrant, meaning the FBI suspected he was operating as a foreign agent. The network said it is possible G-men listened to the president talking to Manafort because the wiretap continued into this year and Trump and Manafort often talked in 2017.

If so, that would mark an infamous history — an American president being overheard by secret agents of his own government.

Goodwin concludes:

I have been reluctant to reach that conclusion, believing that “deep state” is a more fitting concept for a Third World country that has corrupted institutions and no rule of law or history of individual freedom.

But I’m beginning to wonder. The more we learn about the last eight years and eight months, the more reason there is to believe that something is rotten in Washington.

I don’t just mean the ordinary corruption of the swamp variety. I mean something fundamental, something that suggests major elements in our government believe they, and not the people, are sovereign.

Which brings us back to the ultimate test: Did Obama or somebody working for him put Trump under surveillance during or after the election for the purpose of a political coup?

It’s a frightening question, all the more so because I suspect the answer will be yes — if we can ever get to the truth.

War With North Korea Looks Inevitable

Pyongyang’s repeated threats to wage nuclear war on — and indeed turn to ashes and darkness — the United States, coupled with the rapid development of its nuclear and ballistic missiles capabilities, is pushing Washington closer to a decision to launch a military strike against North Korea:

Gordan G. Chang, author of “The Coming Collapse of China” and “Nuclear Showdown: North Korea Takes On the World” writes:

“We have pretty much exhausted all the things that we could do at the Security Council at this point,” said Nikki Haley on CNN’s State of the Union on Sunday, referring to North Korea. “We wanted to be responsible and go through all diplomatic means to get their attention first,” the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations said. “If that doesn’t work, General Mattis [Defense Secretary James Mattis] will take care of it.”

The comments, no off-the-cuff remarks, mirrored her words at a White House press briefing Friday, and National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster, standing next to Haley at that briefing, was even more explicit. “I think we ought to make clear what’s different about this approach is, is that we’re out of time,” he noted, referring to sanctions. “As Ambassador Haley said before, we’ve been kicking the can down the road, and we’re out of road.”

When senior Trump administration officials talk about the end of diplomacy they raise the prospect of war.

But will Kim Jong-un pay any attention to the above statements and start to back off? Unfortunately, he probably won’t. And — in his own mind — why should he? “From administration to administration, American leaders have failed to use all the elements of American power” to dissuade North Korea from pursuing its nuclear weapons ambitions. So — again in his own mind — why should things be any different this time around?

Gordon G. Chang concludes:

And although many Americans call Kim “irrational,” would it be crazy for him to think, now, that Washington will not stop him?

War, through miscalculation and misconception, is beginning to look probable, if not inevitable.