Syria

AL MAGA Daddy


cjones10302019

The killing of an international terrorist on the FBI’s most-wanted list would be a win for any president and an opportunity to be presidential. In moments of successes like this, as it was for President Obama with the death of Osama bin Laden or even a failure like the one Jimmy Carter suffered from a failed mission to rescue hostages from Tehran, presidents become presidential. With the killing of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, Trump had a desperately needed win and he proceeded to mess it up even before the announcement.

Before the raid by American special ops, Trump messed up by not informing key members of Congress, citing that he can’t trust them not to leak. But, he informed Russia. In fact, he thanked Russia even though they didn’t have anything to do with the raid. Before he made the announcement, he tweeted a hint which gave the entire world a huge clue as to what had happened. From “Something very big has just happened!” you’d think had just killed a major terrorist or was bragging about using his pull-ups successfully all by himself for the first time.

Donald Trump could have just delivered the information but he turned it into editorializing, which amounted to preening. He claimed Baghdadi was “screaming, crying, and whimpering, “and he was scared out of his mind,” and he “died like a dog,” and “died like a coward.” While no one is going to mourn the death of this brutal terrorist, Trump threw away American honor and dignity with his childish taunts and insults, even if his claims are true. As Michael Leiter, who led the US National Counterterrorism Center from 2007 to 2011, told VOX, “Highlighting and repeating that language is not especially dignified for the United States. We should always take a higher moral ground, and talking about an individual’s death is not particularly productive. What the president should’ve spent more time on was highlighting ISIS’s atrocities, like the killing of the Jordanian pilot. That’s appropriate: It shows that ISIS wasn’t at war with the West, it was at war with all peoples who are civilized, including Muslims who don’t adhere to their extremely strict view of Sunni Islam.”

Trump claimed he couldn’t trust Democrats in Congress not to leak and inform ISIS an attack was coming, yet he may have revealed classified information during his braggadocious press conference. The biggest danger is that Trump may have tipped off future targets describing the information our nation had about Baghdadi’s compound, which teaches them how to avoid death and capture from future raids.

The mission was named after Kayla Mueller, a victim of the terrorist. Her mother praised Trump and said if “Obama had been as decisive as Trump,” her daughter might still be alive. But, as it turns out, the mission was delayed and complicated by Trump pulling our troops out of Syria. This mission was conducted from Iraq. The mission was made possible by intelligence provided by Kurdish allies, whom Donald Trump has abandoned and given Turkey the green light to slaughter.

Trump used the opportunity to praise his travel ban, despite there not being any ISIS attacks in the United States by anyone traveling from any of the nations on his travel-ban list.

Trump also claimed that nobody heard of Osama bin Laden before 9/11, yet he warned the country it needed to “take him out” in one of his crappy books he didn’t write, a year and a half before planes flew into the World Trade Center. He insinuated 9/11 may not have ever happened if the U.S. had listened to his advice, and complained that he doesn’t receive credit.

Uh, his book, The America We Deserve (gag), does mention bin Laden, but it doesn’t say anything about “taking him out.” And maybe Trump voters never heard of bin Laden before 9/11, but America was aware of him. He was in international news. He had committed major attacks against two U.S. embassies in Africa and on the U.S.S. Cole. There had been attempts to take him out in 1998, before Trump’s book was published. I’m mostly shocked that he didn’t plug that Trump Tower became the tallest building in New York City after 9/11, which he has done before.

Trump also attacked the intelligence community, saying, “I’ve dealt with some people that aren’t very intelligent, having to do with intel.” Never mind the fact that we learned of Baghdadi’s whereabouts from…wait for it…intelligence.

Trump also compared Baghdadi’s death to bin Laden’s, stating “his killing” was a bigger deal than Obama’s.

Obama took nine minutes to announce the killing of bin Laden. Trump took nearly an hour because he needed all that time to take credit. So naturally, in the past, Trump said Obama didn’t deserve any credit for the killing of bin Laden. He had tweeted, “Stop congratulating Obama for killing Bin Laden. The Navy Seals killed Bin Laden.” He actually tweeted about it multiple times over several months.

He said to CNN’s Wolf Blitzer, “What’s he going to say, don’t get him? And he gets all this credit? It’s a lot of crap.” You can expect the same people who spent months, years even, trying to take credit away from Obama for bin Laden to heap it on Trump. Quite frankly, “it’s a lot of crap.”

Trump also posted an obviously-staged photo from the situation room. While the photo of Obama’s situation room looked authentic, with all the participants looking toward the monitor, the photo of Trump’s has everyone looking at the camera as though they’re posed at the table. I’m surprised a product placement wasn’t inserted for Trump Doral. As Raf Sanchez, middle-east correspondent for The Telegraph tweeted, “The Trump situation room photo looks quite a bit more self-conscious than the Obama one.”

Fortunately, a lot of people can see right through Trump. While thinking the world will be praising him, he actually faced a crowd, for what’s probably the last time, that wasn’t a MAGA hate rally. At the World Series Sunday night, Trump got booed and was greeted with chants of “lock him up.”

Boos are appropriate for the boo-hooer.

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Support the cartoonist.

You can help me continue to create cartoons, blogs, and videos by making a contribution. All support, large and small, is greatly appreciated. You can also support me by purchasing a signed print (8 1/2×11) for $40, or a signed poster (18×24) for $100 by clicking the PayPal button (just include a note if you’re purchasing a print). If you want to support but don’t want to use PayPal, you can send a contribution through the mail (address is on the contact page. Again, include a note for a print). I don’t plan on going anywhere and your support will help guarantee that. Whether you support, can’t. or just choose not to, please know that I am truly thankful that you visit my site and read my work.

You can purchase a signed print of this cartoon.

Watch me draw.

Support the cartoonist.

You can help me continue to create cartoons, blogs, and videos by making a contribution. All support, large and small, is greatly appreciated. You can also support me by purchasing a signed print (8 1/2×11) for $40, or a signed poster (18×24) for $100 by clicking the PayPal button (just include a note if you’re purchasing a print). If you want to support but don’t want to use PayPal, you can send a contribution through the mail (address is on the contact page. Again, include a note for a print). I don’t plan on going anywhere and your support will help guarantee that. Whether you support, can’t. or just choose not to, please know that I am truly thankful that you visit my site and read my work.

You can purchase a signed print of this cartoon.

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Kurds Get Trumped


cjones10112019

Donald Trump is not just a risk to our national security. He’s a risk for the world’s security.

Trump has a good argument about America being in “forever wars,” like Afghanistan. He’s not the first to make the argument as it’s one that’s been carried by Republicans and Democrats alike. But pulling our troops out of Kurdish-held northern Syria isn’t removing us from a “forever war,” as most of the fighting on our behalf has been done by Syrian Kurds. They’ve fought with our equipment and training to defeat ISIS.

This is where it gets tricky. The Kurds are holding about 11,000 ISIS fighters. Trump says Turkey must now take responsibility for those prisoners. They also operate camps for families displaced by the war, holding tends of thousands of people. Many of them are non-Syrian wives and children of ISIS fighters.

Turkey does not like the Kurds. They have been fighting separatist Kurds inside their borders for years and consider all Kurdish fighters, including our allies, the Syrian Kurds, to be terrorists. Turkey is planning to invade Northern Syria after the U.S. removes its protection of the Kurds.

Syria’s dictator, who the Kurds have also been fighting, along with ISIS while they’ve been fighting ISIS (told you it’s confusing), controls the southern half of Syria. President Bashar al-Assad is backed by Putin and he wants to retake northern Syria. He’s looking to make a deal with the Kurds. Russia also has troops in Syria.

On Monday, a bipartisan group of lawmakers issued a joint statement saying, “If Turkey attacks these Kurdish soldiers, there is a grave risk that the ISIS fighters they guard will escape and return to the battlefield.” Susan Rice, the former national security adviser for President Obama, told Stephen Colbert, “This is batshit crazy.” Trump’s former UN ambassador Nikki Haley said we’re leaving the Syrian Kurds “to die.” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell came out of his shell and said this will benefit the Syrian regime, Iran, and Russia.” Even Lindsey Graham, who usually resides in Donald Trump’s butt, said this is “complete chaos” and a “disaster.” The butt, however, according to Lindsey, is nice this time of year.

This is America bailing on an ally after they helped us defeat ISIS. Already, there are reports of Turkish artillery shelling and airstrikes on Syrian Kurdish positions. Trump made the decision after a phone call with Turkish President Recep Erdogan, probably after Erdogan promised dirt on Hunter Biden.

The White House said Turkey would “now be responsible for all ISIS fighters in the area captured over the past two years.” Turkey replied, “Yeah, uh-huh. Right.”

The United States has a long history of abandoning the Kurds. President Richard Nixon helped foment a Kurdish uprising in Iraq to fight Iran. But after Iran and Iraq mended fences in 1975, we turned out back on the insurrection and left them to be slaughtered and driven into exile. In 1991, George H.W. Bush called on Iraqis to rise up against dictator Saddam Hussien. After we were done with Desert Storm, we abandoned the Kurds again and Saddam crushed them. Last August, the Trump administration convinced the Kurds to pull back from the Turkish border and dismantle their fortifications. Now, with those fortifications dismantled, Donald Trump has given Turkey the green light to invade northern Syria.

Trump’s former top diplomat in the war against ISIS, Brett McGurk tweeted, “The value of an American handshake is depreciating.” Plus with Trump, you don’t know where that hand’s been.

Hearing the criticism and concern over Turkey’s intentions, Trump tweeted yesterday, “If Turkey does anything that I, in my great and unmatched wisdom, consider to be off limits, I will totally destroy and obliterate the Economy of Turkey (I’ve done before!).” Well, shoot. I guess we were all concerned about nothing because we still have Trump’s “great and unmatched wisdom” to take care of things. If nothing else, he’ll destroy Turkey’s economy like he did before which nobody remembers happening.

The conflict of interest in this crisis should also be noted. There are Trump Towers in Istanbul (in case you’re a Republican, Istanbul is in Turkey). Trump’s proud of these towers and said in 2015, “It’s called Trump Towers. Two towers instead of one. Not the usual one. It’s two.” Unfortunately for the Kurds, they don’t even have one Trump Tower.

We are bailing on our allies and proving to the world we can’t be trusted. Our next president, unless it’s Mike Pence, will have to rebuild that trust. Someone said, “Don’t forget, that’s their territory. We have to help them. They fought with us. They died. We lost tens of thousands of Kurds, died fighting ISIS. They died for us and with us. And for themselves. They died for themselves. They’re great people. And we have not forgotten. We don’t forget.” In case you can’t tell from that sentence structure, Donald Trump said that. He said it last year and, I think he forgot.

All these world leaders who throw Trump parades, flattery, visits to secret cities, sword dances, and promise investigations based on conspiracy theories on his political opponents need to keep in mind, Trump is not loyal. But for us, when Trump bails on an ally, it’s not just his reputation he’s harming. He’s making America look bad. Sure, world leaders in the future will realize our next president fully understands two towers is more than one tower, but they’ll remember we’re the idiots who put an orange idiot in the White House.

We need to show the world that we can do one thing right and that is impeaching Donald Trump because he’s bringing America’s credibility down to his level. And in case you’re a Republican, his level is a sewer.

Support the cartoonist.

You can help me continue to create cartoons, blogs, and videos by making a contribution. All support, large and small, is greatly appreciated. You can also support me by purchasing a signed print (8 1/2×11) for $40, or a signed poster (18×24) for $100 by clicking the PayPal button (just include a note if you’re purchasing a print). If you want to support but don’t want to use PayPal, you can send a contribution through the mail (address is on the contact page. Again, include a note for a print). I don’t plan on going anywhere and your support will help guarantee that. Whether you support, can’t. or just choose not to, please know that I am truly thankful that you visit my site and read my work.

You can purchase a signed print of this cartoon.

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Mission Accomplished Great Again


cjones04182018

Here’s a little quickie for you. Enjoy.

Here’s the video.

Please consider making a donation to keep the cartoons, columns, and videos coming. Reader contributions, small and large, really do help and are appreciated in a time of dwindling revenue for political cartoonists. You will also be supporting free speech and liberty while those in power are doing all they can to suppress it. You can also support by purchasing a signed print for $40.00. Just look at the right of this page and click the PayPal button, or you can email and make other arrangements. Thank you!

A Syrias Distraction


cjones04162018

The FBI raided Trump’s inept attorney’s office, home, and hotel this week, greatly upsetting the president. Michael Cohen probably knows and has records, along with audio recordings, of every dirty and illegal thing Trump has ever done in his adult life. The walls are closing in on the Trump presidency.

And that dossier the Republicans have claimed is a work of a fiction funded by the Democrats and that the Justice Department used to improperly acquire FISA warrants to survey a Russian mole in Trump’s campaign? A part of it may have been confirmed this week. The dossier has information on Cohen meeting with Russians in Prague, Czech Republic. Cohen denied this and posted a photo of his passport to prove it months ago on social media. As it turns out, you don’t need a passport to travel from Germany to the Czech Republic.

Congressional Republicans, who infamously used the dossier to discredit investigators, shut down their own investigation a few weeks ago, claiming there wasn’t enough evidence of collusion with Russia, so they may as well stop looking. Now, they will have to find some new talking points. For now, the Republican National Committee is preoccupied with attacking former FBI Director James Comey.

Comey’s book is coming out next week and the media has released passages beforehand. It describes Trump, well, as the sane among us already see him. Trump called Comey a “slimeball” who is a leaker and a liar…and then he pardoned Scooter Libby, who is a leaker and a liar.

The RNC is putting their full weight into an attack on Comey, a fellow Republican who served the George W. Bush administration. While the rest of the nation sees the desperation of the Trump administration, the GOP is going all in by putting coward before nation.

Friday nights are Trump’s favorite time to pull some shenanigans. Trump’s eager to fire Mueller and Rosenstein, but that’s not really a distraction. Say, let’s bomb Syria.

Trump, who warned Syria, Russia, and Iran earlier in the week that the missiles were coming (he literally said “the missiles are coming”), said to Syria’s allies, “What kind of a nation wants to be associated with the mass murder of innocent men, women and children?”

That’s funny because for the past two years I’ve been wondering what sort of people want to be associated with a massive corrupt dumbass.

Here’s the video.

Please consider making a donation to keep the cartoons, columns, and videos coming. Reader contributions, small and large, really do help and are appreciated in a time of dwindling revenue for political cartoonists. You will also be supporting free speech and liberty while those in power are doing all they can to suppress it. You can also support by purchasing a signed print for $40.00. Just look at the right of this page and click the PayPal button, or you can email and make other arrangements. Thank you!

Raiding The Fixer


cjones04112018

Donald Trump said the raid on his private attorney’s office is an attack on our country and what we all stand for. Apparently, we all stand for money laundering and paying porn stars hush money.

Michael Cohen is less of an attorney and more of a personal fixer. It helps when you have a law license. On Mueller Monday, April 9, the FBI raided Cohen’s office at 30 Rockefeller (yeah, the same building that houses NBC), his home, and hotel room (because he’s been staying in a hotel for a while). This is amazing just for the sheer fact Cohen is Trump’s lawyer. Lawyers and their clients share a privilege of secrecy and confidentiality, but that doesn’t mean a lawyer and his client can be partners in crime.

The FBI was working on behalf of the Southern District of New York, as Mueller’s team passed this case on to them. For investigators to acquire a warrant to raid a lawyer’s office and seize his files, computers, phones, etc, they had to convince a judge there was enough evidence to warrant a crime. The bar for acquiring such a warrant is extremely high, even if the client isn’t the president.

What sort of crimes could we be looking at? There’s the campaign finance violation. Cohen claims he paid off porn star Stormy Daniels out of the goodness of his heart to protect his friend, Donald Trump. Cohen and Trump both claim that Trump was unaware of this payment. But, this payment was days before the presidential election. This was a campaign contribution and it exceeded the maximum amount allowed for an individual, by a lot.

A lawyer is not supposed to make settlements on his client’s behalf without his client’s agreement, and these guys claim Trump didn’t know about it. He also negotiated the thing through his Trump organization email. Trump really does hire the best people. For this shenanigan, Cohen can and should lose his license to practice law.

Cohen says he took out a line of credit on his home for this money, which was never reimbursed by Trump. For him to take out this line of credit he would have to apply for the loan. Did he put “porn star hush payment” on the application? I’m going to bet he did not, and that alone may be bank fraud. Investigators are also looking into wire fraud. Criminals have been purchasing units in Trump’s towers for years for money laundering.

Trump has become unhinged over this raid. Before a meeting with his war advisers, he spoke to the press and referred to it as a “break-in,” when in fact it’s a lawful raid with a warrant. He claimed this was an attack on our nation. He was visibly disturbed as he groused about it with his arms tightly folded together. On the 11th Hour on MSNBC, Republican strategist Steve Schmidt said Trump looked like a dime-store Mussolini.

Trump complained about the people behind this being Obama’s people, that the FBI needed to go after Hillary Clinton, and he attacked his own appointees. He attacked Geoffrey Berman, the U.S. attorney for the office that was handed the case by the Special Counsel. He again criticized Attorney General Jeff Sessions for recusing himself from the Russia investigation and not using his position as Trump’s personal protection service. He attacked the man overseeing the investigation, Rod Rosenstein, and he discussed firing Robert Mueller. What he didn’t mention was the rule of law. He talked about the unfairness of it all, as American society has made life difficult and grueling for white billionaires.

Former U.S. Attorney Joyce White Vance said, “This search warrant is like dropping a bomb on Trump’s front porch.” The FBI just raided the guy who knows all of Trump’s dirtiest secrets. If we know about the porn stars, what else is there that’s worse?

Cohen was the lead negotiator for the Moscow Trump Tower that Trump was working on during his presidential campaign. He even negotiated a $150,000 payment from a Ukrainian oligarch to the Trump Foundation for Trump to speak to a conference in Kiev during the presidential campaign. The Trump Foundation is a scam charity that Trump has used to purchase gifts for himself, to make political donations to a state attorney general in Florida who was looking into Trump University, and to pay Eric Trump’s Boy Scout fee.

The fear now is that Mueller is so close to Trump’s finances and dirty deeds that Trump may fire him. There’s no telling what investigators are going to find in Cohen’s secret stash. Trump has to weigh the fallout versus what Mueller may find. The problem with this is, the investigation into Cohen isn’t being handled by Mueller’s team, though some of it may be handed back to them depending on what’s found.

Trump also can’t fire Michael Avenatti, the lawyer for Stormy Daniels, who won’t stop until he gets Trump into a deposition or a courtroom.

Trump is in trouble. His presidency is the epicenter of the corruption that has consumed his administration. He’s also used it to enrich himself and those close to him. He’s expressed more concern for his special interest than he has for the job he was elected to do. He’s running the presidency as he ran his company, like a family crime business.

The question that remains is; will Trump burn the country down and the rule of law to save his own ass? Unfortunately, precedent points toward his ass. Let’s hope Mueller nails it first.

Here’s the video.

Please consider making a donation to keep the cartoons, columns, and videos coming. Reader contributions, small and large, really do help and are appreciated in a time of dwindling revenue for political cartoonists. You will also be supporting free speech and liberty while those in power are doing all they can to suppress it. You can also support by purchasing a signed print for $40.00. Just look at the right of this page and click the PayPal button, or you can email and make other arrangements. Thank you!

Syrian Chemical Attack


cjones04102018

There is not an issue Donald Trump has talked about where he hasn’t expressed opposing viewpoints.

He criticized President Obama for talking about pulling troops out of Iraq, though that was a decision made by the Bush administration. Last week, he expressed his desire to pull U.S. troops out of Syria, thus leaving that nation to the will of Syria’s dictator, Russia, and Iran. He apparently didn’t consult with the Pentagon before voicing this plan. He also froze $200 million to help recovery efforts in Syria.

A few days later, the Syrian military stages a chemical attack on the city of Douma, held by rebel forces fighting the Bashar Assad Regime.

A year ago, Trump bombed a Syrian runway after that nation staged a chemical attack against their citizens. He warned Putin the attack was coming, thus warning Assad. Obviously, it didn’t deter them.

The Russians say claims of the attack are a hoax and a provocation. A missile strike has been conducted against a Syrian airbase used by Iran, and the Russians are blaming Israel. Somehow, Donald Trump has made an already horrible situation even worse.

Senator John McCain says Trump’s talks of pulling out U.S. troops emboldened Assad and Russia. He’s right. Donald Trump isn’t just dangerous for the United States, but people worldwide.

When Donald Trump talks, stock markets crash, internet trolls get dumber, dictators become emboldened, and people die.

Here’s the video.

Please consider making a donation to keep the cartoons, columns, and videos coming. Reader contributions, small and large, really do help and are appreciated in a time of dwindling revenue for political cartoonists. You will also be supporting free speech and liberty while those in power are doing all they can to suppress it. You can also support by purchasing a signed print for $40.00. Just look at the right of this page and click the PayPal button, or you can email and make other arrangements. Thank you!

Surely In Syria


cjones04102017

I am glad to see Donald Trump strike against the people who killed the people that he would never allow into our country. What puzzles me though is how he was moved by the Syrian gas attack to the point that he launches 59 Tomahawk missiles at a Syrian runway, yet he wasn’t moved by a much worse gas attack in 2013. Basically a president shouldn’t get involved in Syria unless that president is a Republican.

What’s next with Syria? Nothing. We called the Russians and told them to get out of the way, who in turn told the Syrians to get out of the way. There will be some fingers wagging here and there but no real damage. Trump is still their boy.

Trump’s supporters will love that he killed six Syrians and bombed a runway. His approval rating may even reach 40%. He’ll use this event to show Congress that he’s not Putin’s puppet, though he is. By Monday we’ll probably be back to chaos, er, business as usual.

I am glad he was moved by the photos of dead children he doesn’t want in America. What does concern me is what moves him to act. They must have shown the pictures on Fox News. I don’t want the president to be so reactionary that he stops dropping bombs based on what he saw in the “spin zone.”

Perhaps there wouldn’t have been a gas attack in Syria last Tuesday if Trump and his team didn’t tell the world a few days before that he had no interest in removing Assad. Trump gave Assad a green light to gas his own people. Now he’s taught Assad that his response will be to destroy Syrian concrete.

Yippee ki-yay, mother….

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