In America the question has long since ceased to be whether or not we should go to war. Instead, we argue over how we go about maintaining and expanding an already endless landscape of wars.

What We Do Best
Patrick Blanchfield on the acceptance and depoliticization of war in US (political) life.

It is also unclear what legal authority Trump used to order the strikes in Syria. News reports Thursday said Trump had told some congressional lawmakers he was considering a military option in Syria, but none had been sought. The U.S. strikes against ISIS, for instance, are arguably covered by the Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF), but the AUMF doesn’t cover strikes against the Assad regime. Still, Trump might receive retroactive congressional approval for the strikes in Syria, just as Obama did in 2011 in the ultimately ill-advised operation in Libya.  

Trump won’t be the first president to campaign against war and yet wage it, as David noted: Both Woodrow Wilson, who took the U.S. into World War I exactly a century ago this week, and George W. Bush, whose interventions in Afghanistan and Iraq are being felt even today, did just that. Whether the U.S. action in Syria will be confined to Friday’s action was unclear—even to the president. Speaking Thursday to reporters aboard Air Force One, Trump said of Assad: “He’s there, and I guess he’s running things, so I guess something should happen.”

The U.S. Strikes in Syria (The Atlantic)

I think it’s understandable (if wrong) that Trump took military action in Syria, but the way he did is once again ill-advised and reckless. I also can’t get over the fact that a billionaire just ordered military escalation in a complex, international conflict from a golf club in Florida.  

Words don’t need visas, but humans do. […] Citizenship is our most loaded form of fiction.

Molly Crabapple writes for VICE about translating Syrian poet Nizar Qabbani and the fiction of citizenship.

Cruz: Letting Muslim Syrian Refugees Into The U.S. Is ‘Crazy’

The junior senator from Texas, born in Canada to a father who immigrated from Cuba in the 1950s, is the latest GOP candidate to claim that a significant number of those fleeing from a civil war are actually sleeper terrorists.

For what it’s worth I think that rhetoric like this is neither democratic nor Christian and breaks with the Bible and the Geneva Convention. Abhorrent and dangerous political posturing.

Cruz: Letting Muslim Syrian Refugees Into The U.S. Is ‘Crazy’

Make Perms Not War

Saber-rattling. Increased presence of battle ships in response to a violent conflict in a third country. Decrees banning protests in Russia. Discussions of boycotting the Olympics in NATO countries. 

Seems like after the popcultural retro phase, geopolitics are now going 80s.