While Russia is spending more than any individual European NATO nation, the total military spending by those NATO nations outpaces Russia by roughly 3 to 1. I have been concerned about the growing Russian threat. I think these data put this threat in a useful context.
The Oxford Union was founded in 1823 and is a famous platform for debate. The merits of a given motion are debated and then a vote is taken.
The motion: This House Believes the United Nations is a Failing Institution.
Eight speakers with strong arguments on either side.
I’m not a fan of the U.N. but it was fun and educational to hear about people’s argument’s in favor of it, as well as brutal criticisms. Saudi Arabia being on the U.N. human rights council would be one of them. Does that seem right to you?
What is happening in the South China Sea is a big deal and I don’t see a clear or good way out of it. I can see no course of action without significant and negative consequences. AXIOS has a good three point synopsis.
Apparently the folks at Zinc only upload videos to FB. It’s a short video (1:13).
Let’s lead with the fact that banning people because of their religion is quintessentially unAmerican.
Just like Trump, but to a different direction, this video misses the point. The Muslims killing Muslims e.g. ISIS, would claim those being killed are not Muslims.
While 106,000 is a small percentage, it is a large number. It looks nice to say 0.006% of Muslims are terrorists and makes a useful point but it is missing the larger point.
Having seen how badly people misinterpret Christianity from the outside, I am reluctant to make any statements about what a religion is or is not. With that understood, it is my understanding that the actions of ISIS are justifiable under the Quran and Sharia law. This not to say it is the only perspective one can take but that it is a perspective ISIS and their supporters can support from text and tradition.
This leads us to the larger point, What is Islam?
What is happening right now is a battle for the meaning of the faith. So when 1.6 billion Muslims are mentioned, what does that mean?
The video also treats Islamism as a spontaneous movement devoid of context. The West (US, UK, et al), Russia, and others have acted to the detriment of people living in areas with high concentrations of Muslims. That is not the sole reason we have our current troubles but it is part of it.