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"Enthusiastic Welcom" for Obama; Putin's deja vu all over again

Reader comment on item: Musing on History
in response to reader comment: expiration date and ...?

Submitted by Michael S (United States), Oct 10, 2015 at 06:46

Hi, Waz. You said,

One good way to look at each day is pretend you are looking back at it from a future self who has been given the chance to re-live it - and look at each moment with appreciation.

My brain hurts. Meanwhile, my wife saw a very large military transport flying overhead yesterday. It turned out to be carrying a US Marine Corps helicopter and other equipment for the visit this morning of US President Obama. From here, he was ferried to Roseburg, for an "enthusiastic" welcome. Here are some of the signs of how popular he is in these parts. He didn't stay long and wisely, didn't say much. By afternoon, he was up in Seattle (or "down" in Seattle -- it's north of here, but at sea level).

Lots of people (in the news media) are excited about Russia's involvement in Syria. Either I've missed something, or this looks like Vietnam around the "Gulf of Tonkin" incident in August, 1964 -- only with the tables turned, and Russia making the same stupid moves the US made back then. In that respect, it's also like the invasion of Afghanistan in 1979, called "Russia's Vietnam" by some. Supposing that we are on the same timetable now that we were then (namely, supposing we are following a 36-year cycle), the most recent US repeat of the GoTi was in 2000 -- corresponding closely to our own intervention into the Middle East with the Iraq War.

What is it, that makes Putin think he can do better than Leonid Brezhnev did in Afghanistan, or than George W. Bush did in Iraq? Russia today is not even in the same league that the US was in 2002 in Iraq; and also far less powerful than the USSR in 1979. He's propping up Bashar al-Assad, an unpopular dictator representing minority religious groups, just as we backed first Ngo Dinh Diem and then Nguyen Cao Ky and the Francophile Catholics in Vietnam. He's opposed by an international movement, Islamism, just as we were opposed by international Communism. He's taking sides in a civil war of nativist forces fighting the lackey of the Russians; just as we were involved in a civil war of nativist forces fighting the lackey of the Americans. Am I missing something? Or is this deja vu all over again?

Shalom shalom


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