Wednesday June 19, 2013
photo: U.S. Embassy Jakarta, Indonesia
Everyone is wondering who is Ben Rhodes, a 30-something who ascended from literally nowhere to be what seems a main driving force behind Obama's foreign policy. He is credited with convincing the president to embrace the Arab Spring, convincing the president to bomb Libya, and, now, convincing the president to start yet another war, this time against Syria.
Who is he? How did a 24-year old aspiring fiction-writer in 2002 suddenly become one of the drafters of not only the 9/11 Commission report but also the Iraq Study Group Report? Then move on to Obama's presidential campaign as a speechwriter and then to Deputy National Security Advisor, from where he announced the beginning of a US war on Syria while the president met with supporters in the East Room of the White House? Those familiar with Washington know that such miraculous ascents rarely happen on their own and are equally rarely the result of pure, raw talent.
Last week, my vacationing family was stopped at not one, but two, internal checkpoints along Interstate 8 in Arizona and California and questioned about our citizenship.
"During the second hour of the program, Daniel McAdams, The Executive Director of The Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity, joins me to discuss the national security state, the NSA surveillance, and how our country’s foreign policy in the warfare state helps to drive the police state at home. We get into Turkey, Syria, and the various programs and goals of the newly formed Ron Paul Institute."You can listen to the interview here.
Sen. Saxby Chambliss (Ga.), the top Republican on the Intelligence Committee, said, “This is nothing particularly new.... Every member of the United States Senate has been advised of this.”
He added: “It is simply what we call metadata that is never utilized by any government agency” unless an agency goes to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court judges for further review of the information.
Turkey is fascinating and confusing. What is happening? A protest over a new shopping mall turns into the spark of a revolution? Is Taksim Square the new Tahrir Square?
As ever it is complicated and there are many lines and strains and competing interest groups. However the smoke is starting to clear a bit.