THE INSTITUTE OF POST-COMMUNIST STUDIES AND OF TERRORISM












WHO WE ARE:

 

 

Leni and Dr. Jiri Valenta are pictured holding the original, not yet published Russian manuscript, of the late Alexander Yakovlev, Mikhail Gorbachev's former chief advisor. Their September 2000 interview took place at Yakovlev's office in the former building of the Central Committee on Staraya Ploshad' [Old Square], now, as the sign reads,  the  "Administration of the President of the Russian Federation."  Familiar with Jiri's book about the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia, Yakovlev allowed the Valentas to study his manuscript,   Omut Pamiati, Ot stolypina do putina [Maelstrom of mory:  From Stolypin to Putin],  in their hotel room during two days of interviews

________________________________________________________________________________

 

       JVLV INSTITUTE OF POST-COMMUNIST STUDIES  AND TERRORISM

UPDATES:

July 28, 2015:  We have more on Trump, the leading GOP contender for the presidency, in our election section.  Why we do we support him?  Readers may find our reasons surprising.  We are offering the candidate more wise counsel. 


July 23, 2015:  We have a new section at JVLV, "Election 2016."  Articles on the candidates will be posted here, with our  our main, though not only focus  on foreign policy and strategies for dealing with the major threats that face our country. believe the most pressing and immediate ones are associated with Islamic terrorism, both Sunni and Shiite, and our open borders with dysfunctional state Mexico.  We also have focused for a few years on Russia´s aggression in the Ukraine and its implications for the U.S.  We started off by asking Donald Trump to apologize to Senator John McCain.  Since he did so (sort of), we have posted a sampling of public reactions to their fracas.  Additionally, you can scroll down and find our previous articles advising both Donald Trump and Jeb Bush.

July 17, 2015:  Dr. Valenta was contacted by an Iranian journalist, Hamid Bayati, who interviewed him on American reactions to the Iran nuclear deal.  His letter and Dr. Valenta´s responses are in our "Current News" section.  A previous interview with Bayati on the Charlie Hebdo massacre was published in January in the Teheran Times.

July 4, 2015:  Happy July 4, everyone!  We have a great article in "Current News" and please don´t miss it.  Undaunted by the mass hysteria, we are coming out strongly in defense of Donald Trump, perhaps the best presidential candidate we have for a variety of reasons.  We set them forth in our open letter responding to one that he sent to us on July 2. We are not uncritical.  But we appreciate his courage, his frankness and his ability, and have given him some positive advice.   

June 29, 2015:  "Tri-continent attacks Require New U.S. Strategy" explores the June 26 massacres in Tunisia and Kuwait and attack on a U.S. factory owner in France.  The whole story, with some new insights, is in "Current News."  In the face of current fears about a coming attack on July 4, we hope you will share with others the need for America to finally realize the proportions of the global threat.  This article is also in our "Terrorism" section.


June 12, 2015:  Jeb Bush needs a new advisory team.  Read why in our "Current News" section, "Jeb Should be His Father´s Not His Brother´s Keeper."  In our Russia section it´s "The Decisions Were Made;"  Afghanistan and Iraq.

This is a different website.  While there are numerous research platforms dealing either with the phenomena of post-communism or terrorism, as far as we know there is not one that focuses on both of them, including their past ties, current conflicts and interactions. In its pioneering effort, the  Institute of Post-Communism and Terrorism (JV & LV) seeks to fill the void, while providing a net assessment of the critical issues  impinging on America's vital national security. 

Our aim is to employ a historical perspective, drawing upon our extensive research and experience in analyzing the decade-long Soviet war in Afghanistan, revolutions in communist and post-communist countries, ongoing disputes and on site interviews with key players, past and present.  Whenever relevant, we also address issues of foreign policy-making, including our failures like Benghazi-gate.  By creating a database of relevant and unique material, we hope to provide  academics and governments with better tools and deeper insights than might otherwise be available.

The term “post-communist”  refers to the evolution of former communist regimes since the 1991 fall of the Soviet Union.  Before that, the communist system was characterized by four tenets;  a vanguard party having a monopoly on political power, other vertical structures, state planning in lieu of market forces, and an ideological alliance with other Leninist regimes in the interest of proletarian internationalism.  This term is  a shorthand for strategic alliance with the USSR.


In the post-Soviet era, most of the formerly communist regimes in Central Europe, the Baltics and parts of the Balkans, have morphed into  democratic and market-oriented states with horizontal structures (e.g. political parties). Their once strategic alliance with Russia has been replaced with membership in NATO.  A very few countries, such as North Korea, Cuba and Byelorussia, have preserved Leninist political structures.  Still others can be defined as hybrids, a category which includes China and Russia.  

Surely, these two Great Powers are the most important post-communist countries.  While neither  are democracies, they are stable countries slowly moving in the direction of reform. In Russia, the ideology of Leninism has been replaced by a return to the Orthodox, Eastern Christianity practiced under the tsars.  There is now a market in lieu of a planned economy, but the strategic parameters are defined and influenced by the state. 

China, maintaining formal Leninist structures, is more integrated than Russia into the global market, with
its own formidable, technological innovations.  Also spurred by its demographic growth and her huge investment in America's treasuries, China has become a dynamic member of the world capitalist system.

In terms of our research on post-communism, our main task is conflict avoidance and prevention in the vital interest of the U.S.  Thus we look at the sources of potential disputes between Russia and some of the former Soviet non-Russian republics in the Baltics and Caucasus.  Two of those in the Caucasus are still part of the Russian Federation; Chechnya and Dagestan.  At the present time we are doing on-site research in Central America on Cuba, Nicaragua and Venezuela and their interaction with rogue states North Korea and Iran.

Our other major focus is terrorism.  By this we mean violence perpetrated by rogue regimes and  national or transnational organizations, for religious and/or political reasons.  Ultimately, the most dangerous threat to our national security is the potential of these groups to unleash nuclear holocaust; something we must prevent at all costs.  Here lies a common interest we share not only with our allies, but also Great Powers Russia and China. 

Terrorist groups include, but are not limited to Hezbollah and Hamas as well as Al Qaeda and its network of affiliates. They are active in rogue states  Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, Libya, Somalia, South Yemen, Chechnya and others.  All of these, despite NATO interventions in some cases, are facing war or civil
war, instability, ethnic strife and growing terrorism. 

This is a lively site and we add to it almost daily, sometimes with important news items, also by publishing debates.  Politically independent and bipartisan, we strive to present different points of view despite our own opinions on various issues.  We also feature a holocaust-genocide section.  Having both had relatives who died in the holocaust, we seek to remind ourselves and our readers of past catastrophes and the dangers of WMD that we face daily. 

The principles of this site are internationally known scholar Dr. Jiri Valenta, and his wife and partner, Leni Friedman Valenta.  The author/editor of numerous books including the renowned, Soviet Intervention in Czechoslovakia, 1968;  Anatomy of a Decision, Dr. Valenta is a long standing member of America's foremost foreign policy think tank, the Council on Foreign Relations.  He is also the recipient of the Jan Masaryk medal from Czech Republic for furthering ties between Czech Republic and the USA.   The recipient of  numerous distinguished fellowships and grants, he is  an internationally known scholar anod educator and the author/editor of numerous books
 
Leni Friedman Valenta holds a three-year Masters in playwriting from the Yale School
o f Drama in playwriting, has authored plays and books with historical themes, operated her own writing service for many years, and has served as an official in New Jersey Democratic party politics. She has joined Dr. Valenta  in ongoing blogs with the Russian International Affairs Council and works with him on this website as well as on two major books. 

     Dr. Jiri Valenta and Leni Valenta can be reached at jvlv@jvlv.net.  We are on Twitter
     at
Valenta@JiriLeniValenta   We both have LinkedIn accounts.  

                                                 



Dr.  Jiri Valenta  dining with Boris Yeltsin, then a Soviet opposition leader, at his Moscow apartment, October 1989.  Yeltsin prepares to toast "to a clean and  sober life," the motto of his political enemies who briefly introduced a  disastrous Russian Prohibition.  Valenta amused Yeltsin by quoting the old adage,  "Prohibition is like communism.  It's a good idea but it cannot work." 



        
Building of the JVLV Institute of Post-Communist Studies and Terrorism

In general, this institute is a logical continuation of the work and products of a former organization, the Institute of Soviet and East European Studies (ISEES), which Dr. Valenta founded and supervised at the University of Miami from 1986-91.  ISEES, which sponsored dialogues and debates in addition to producing monographs and occasional papers, was abolished after the 1991 defeat of the putchists in Moscow, and with Dr. Valenta's transfer to a senior position in the Czech government as Director of the Institute of International Relations in Prague.    

 

 

Leni Valenta shakes hands with Gorbachev during a break at the inaugural meeting of his Association of the USA and Russia, Moscow, September 2000.

______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

This site is dedicated to our late patriarch, Herbert Friedman, the beloved father of Leni Friedman Valenta and father-in-law of Jiri.  A believer in international peace, he gave us the resources to conduct our work according to our own free will and conscience.  In his honor we have reproduced a large paitning that Leni did of him shortly after his death in 2004 at the age of almost 101
. 


                                                                


    



















    




        



current news

OUR JVLV COLUMNS


Tags:  Jiri Valenta Iran interview on nuke deal      Valenta attacks Iranian nuke deal

No link with regional issues in Iran nuke deal          

       IRANIAN JOURNALIST INTERVIEWS DR. VALENTA ON NUCLEAR DEAL

Note: 
Dr. Valenta was contacted on Linkedin by Hamid Bayati, a journalist with an Iranian news service who previously interviewed him in January about the Charlie Hebdo massacre. This time Mr. Bayati wanted to know how Americans were reacting to the U.S. nuclear deal with Iran.  We have printed his initial letter, followed by  he entire interview.  In the latter, we brushed up the English in his questions for greater clarity. 


July 10, 2015

Dear Professor:

Thank you for your previous kindness. As you know Iran and World Powers reach nuclear deal and I have some questions about it and I would be so appreciate if you answer them.

- How do you evaluate the deal? Does it cover US or West interests on Iran nuclear activity?
- Iranian foreign minister calls nuclear deal a 'win-win solution' and 'new chapter of hope.' Do you agree with this view?
- Does this deal led to we see more cooperation between Iran and west especially the US in regional and international issues?
- What do you think about US congress reaction especially republicans to this deal? Are these act help implement of nuclear deal or harmful to it?
- Is this deal has any effect on US presidential election or does it help Democrats in upcoming elections?
- What do you think about Israel next approach or activity toward Iran after nuclear deal?
Best regards

THE INTERVIEW

-How do you evaluate the deal?  Does it cover U.S. or Western interests on Iranian nuclear activity?

I am addressing mainly the U.S. interests.  The deal  is not what President Obama desired in 2013 when he called it, “a new path towards a world that is more secure;  a future in which we can verify that Iran´s nuclear program is peaceful and that it cannot build a nuclear weapon.”  Many officials an analysts feel it represents an incredible capitulation by the U.S., including the lifting of an embargo of arms at the last minute.  I am among them.  As it is, it actually creates a path towards a less secure world since it would initiate nuclear proliferation among the Gulf States, above all, Saudi Arabia.

True the U.S. negotiator tried to improve the language on verifying Iran´s nuclear program and your Minister of Foreign Affairs made some concessions, but they don´t go far enough.  The language is ambiguous and does not  provide for unimpeded access to all of Iran´s nuclear facilities.  It does not fully bar Iran from building nuclear weapons, since Iran is allowed to keep some of  its nuclear infrastructure. Originally, the objective of the agreement was that Iran would not keep any of it.  Most troubling is that the deal allows Iran to have a plutonium reactor, enriching inside a mountain as Senator Bob Menendez of New Jersey, the ranking democrat on the Senate Foreign relations Committee pointed out.  

-The Iranian foreign minister calls nuclear deal a 'win-win solution' and 'new chapter of hope.' Do you agree with this view?

He knows it is primarily win-win for Iran, and I disagree it is a new chapter of hope. It could have been had our chief negotiator, John Kerry, insisted in the last draft of the agreement to address the major concern about an airtight system of monitoring and verification.  The ambiguous sentences, with classified appendixes that we cannot read, so far do not give us confidence that this has happened.

- Does this deal lead to our seeing more cooperation between Iran and the West, especially the U.S., in regional and international issues?

As long as your president presides over crowds chanting “Death to America” and “Death to Israel,” I don´t see how the deal could contribute to the cooperation you and I previously discussed in our last interview. Hassan Rouhani was marching prominently in that parade.  We know you have a word, “Taqiyya,” which means “lie to infidels.”  How can we trust him?  
I also believe it will behoove the U.S. to insist on more concessions  before we can develop better relations.  Unfortunately, the regional issues and conflicts in which Iran is involved with its Revolutionary Guards in Iraq, and its support for Syria and the Houthis in South Yemen,  were not reflected in the agreement.

I also wonder if you can inform your readers what was reported July 13 in the Wall Street Journal by Bret Stephens. He wrote we have evidence in the West that that during the negotiations your leaders went on an illicit shopping spree for a plutonium plant in Arak.  Moreover, as revealed by Czech officials in January 2015, Teheran tried to covertly purchase $60 million worth of “dual use” nuclear technologies.  These  examples much resemble the North Korean  “compliance” and “concessions” that led, during the tenures of Secretaries of States Condi Rice and Madeleine Albright, to a north Korean bomb.  Iran seems to be following the North Korean path, negotiating while building nuclear weapons.   

- What do you think about U.S. Congress´s reaction, especially those of the Republicans, to this deal? Do these acts help to implement the nuclear deal or are they harmful to it?

By “acts,” I assume you mean the latest negotiations.  We do not  know at this point if the U.S. Congress will block the deal or approve it.  They want to study it.   Some argue that the sanctions when lifted  will clearly strengthen the geopolitical ambitions of the Teheran government.  Others,  the Republicans in general, but also  many Democrats,  do not trust the system of monitoring and verification provided in the deal.  They feel the term “managed access” does not provide for airtight verification.  However, if the Congress and Senate vote down the deal, the President intends to issue a veto.  Then it will require a two thirds majority of both houses to override it.  That could be difficult.  
 
-Will this deal have any effect on the U.S. presidential election?

The deal surely will have a significant influence on the elections.  You can expect that the deal will be one of the major issues discussed in the early primary debates.  All the rising Republican candidates have already rejected it -- Jeb Bush, Donald Trump, Scott Walker, Ted Cruz et al.  Moreover, even Hillary Clinton was not enthusiastic about supporting all aspects of the deal and expressed only reserved approval.  The Congress goes on recess for the summer and will be reviewing the deal in early September. 

Does it help Democrats in upcoming elections?

Not necessarily.  The Democratic Party congressmen and senators are on the whole more supportive of the deal than the Republicans, and their presidential candidate, Hillary Clinton, supports it.  But there are many skeptics among the voters  who believe the deal should be renegotiated or else rejected.  Teheran should not simplistically see the democrats as supporting a better relationship with Iran.
 
What is not helpul is that so far your government has not released the four prisoners you are holding.  Some are angry they were not part of the deal.  They feel the  Cubans at least did that. I am really surprised Kerry did not insist on it as a pre-condition or that your negotiators did not offer it as a measure of good will.

The deal also provides for the import of arms, particularly an air defense system from Russia.  Nor does it address the geopolitical ambitions of your government in Syria, Lebanon, Iraq and South Yemen.  Therefore, it could unfortunately not serve as the hopeful beginning of a new era between our countries that you and I discussed earlier.

What do you think about Israel’s next approach or activity toward Iran after nuclear deal?

Not only the American GOP leaders and some democrats, but also the regional actors including Sunni regimes, the Saudis above all, are unhappy about the deal.  Prime Minister Netanyahu has reserved the right to protect Israel´s security.  His rhetoric was ominous.  The Gulf Arab regimes will surely initiate their own path towards acquiring nuclear weapons.  They reject the deal as does Israel.  Iran succeeded in shaping a new, anti-Iran coalition of Israeli and Arab Sunni leaders.  In my judgment the nuclear deal is less evil than going to war.  But war can break out because of America´s inability to control its allies. 
 

Tags:  In support of  Donald Trump     Trump is highly qualified    Trump unfairly maligned on Mexico

             JVLV:  AN OPEN LETTER TO DONALD TRUMP

Tags   In support of Donald Trump    Trump has been maligned as racist    

                 And Why He Can Trump America´s Crisis
                           
                                       By Jiri and Leni Friedman Valenta

                                 July 4, 2015

“Is it the 4th?”  Said founding father Thomas Jefferson on the day he died in 1826.  Donald, I am sure you agree that if he were alive today he would be very concerned that our republic, on this sacred day, is once again approaching the fundamental, multi-dimensional crisis, amidst unprecedented world disorder as she did on July 4 1941.  Moreover, there are only a few 2016 presidential candidates who really understand what is happening and even more importantly, have the courage to articulate it.   Far from being a buffoon as some have characterized you, Donald, we consider you to be a rare commodity amongst the minions of mediocrity. Thus, we are responding to your letter to us of July 2.  

The Link Between Foreign and Domestic Policies.

We are in deep trouble and it´s rooted in not understanding the linkages between domestic and foreign policy.  As a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, please read the book by our president,  Richard Haass,   Foreign Policy Begins at Home;  The Case for Putting America´s House in Order.  Any sound foreign policy must be bed-rocked by the solid domestic state of our union. But what is the state of our union?  It is in deep crisis. Contrary to President Barack Obama´s yearly proclamations, without dramatic change after the forthcoming election, we are on our way to becoming a huge Greece.

Not only must we finally elect a president who has a deep knowledge of economic and financial issues, but one who has the determination to cease naming people to the highest positions  because of their gender, ethnicity, or political favors.   The only standard must be excellence.

Immigration and Recovering From The Mexican Fumble

There is no way you are either anti-Latino or anti-Mexican, or a racist, and your foes know it.  We saw, the glint of tears in your eyes as you commended the president´s excellent eulogy in the Charleston church, and his memorable singing of “Amazing Grace.”  Undoubtedly you surely need to pay more attention to how you phrase the stream of thoughts that churn in your high energy mind.

The feeding frenzy that  followed your fumble has all the earmarks of a well-organized campaign, latched onto by well-meaning people emotionally caught up in the present, anti-racist environment.   As with the denunciation of Confederate flags, as soon as you made comments that presumably offended Mexicans,  a chain of businesses denounced you, as they earlier denounced the Confederate flag.  This too will pass.


A few simple words were blown and spun way out of proportion.  Where is the commensurate fury that Hillary, of “What difference does it make?” fame, lied about Benghazi-gate? Or over the shenanigans  of the Clinton Foundation that  allowed Russia to wind up with a fifth of our uranium?  Where are the petitions about the misuse of Hillary´s e-mail, surely hacked by foreign powers?


Even the Confederate flag, a symbol of southern pride, is being damned and taken down as a racist symbol, while ecstasies of PC are behind efforts to remove the monument of Robert E. Lee. Will this be followed by those of slave owners like George Washington and Thomas Jefferson?   But Donald, to paraphrase Richard Nixon, you inadvertently handed your foes the sword, and it should be a warning that you have to be more carefully scripted.  You can still make people understand, and you can also point to a well-organized, PC campaign against you by your political foes.  Moreover, you can apologize for your remarks about Jeb and remind the GOP of Ronald Reagan’s dictum not to attack fellow Republicans.


Your fumble was linked to your concerns over massive immigration, a major and growing problem worldwide.  Waves of it are presently engulfing   Italy and Spain as well as other parts of Europe.  Hungary has decided to build a wall on its Serbian border, such as you have contemplated with Mexico.  These nations are suffering economically as well as  being besieged and crowded by Islamic immigrants from north Africa and the Middle East.
As you well know, many of these immigrants from dozens of developing countries – not just Mexicans -- are finding their way to our American-Mexican borders, and they surely do include drug dealers who, as we fear, find common cause with terrorists.  Any dirty bomb is likely to come through this route.


However, the devil is in the details.  Do not apologize, but promise you will be more precise in the future and document all of your statements. You can also point out that  tightly scripted Hillary does little but nod sagely and let her fans fill in the blanks. And the truth is the blanks are really blank.  Let me also share some yuks at Hillary´s claim to be “champion of the middle class.” It´s surely not a claim that should be made by someone who was labeled a “Bolshevik” by some prior Clinton administration insiders.



To Prevent America From Becoming Greece


Donald, you must make national security – our survival -- your predominant issue.  But you also  have the advantage of  being one of the only candidates capable of preventing another Great Depression like that of the 1930´s.   You do have to explain what kind of mess this is. The European Union is our largest trading partner.  With the Greek fiasco threatening to destroy the euro,  it is simply essential that we help Europe.  We have to do it as we did it twice in the last century in two World Wars and with the Marshal Plan. But we must also accomplish this even as we ourselves avoid the Greek “infection” in Puerto Rico with our ever growing debt. Who is as qualified to tackle this as you?


President Obama´s major failure, like that of “W”, has been in extending our insolvencies and indebtedness, and we cannot possibly recover under his well-intentioned, but naïve and populist proposals.  Take Obamacare. You must not just continuously say you will “repeal it.”  You, and other Republicans, have to propose a viable alternative as did Mitt Romney as governor of Massachusetts.  Most importantly, who´s going to pay for the enormous cost of Obamacare next year, as well as raising the minimum wage and paying for overtime as Obama proposes?

Please read the recent government reports concluding Puerto Rico´s fiasco was in large part due to raising the minimum wage.  This must not be repeated on a national scale.  Above all, Donald, you know that given the present multiple threats to our national security, we cannot afford sequestration of our military!  Our military is overextended and its budget must be beefed up.   Quite simply, none of this can happen under what would amount to a third Obama term under Hillary.


On The Threat of Islamic Fascism and New Attack on Egypt


With the recent tri-continent, ISIS attacks we discussed in our last JVLV blog, and the new one in Egypt, please  potently articulate that we are caught between two Greek words, the  Scylla  of insolvency and the Charybdis of international, Islamic-fascist terrorism.  Immediately ask our president, who so movingly spoke in Charleston, why he did not publicly speak on behalf of our British cousins with their huge losses in Tunisia -- an attack organized by an Islamist group in Libya!  Let us hope he will declare support for Tunisia´s state of emergency.   Ask him again why did he not go to Paris to show solidarity with other world leaders after the Charlie Hebdo massacre?  Why does he still refuse to identify the Islamist threat  as such? And  why has French President Francois Hollande, and not U.S. President  Obama, asked to preside over the initiative to organize a world summit against the Islamists.  Isn´t Obama  the president of the indispensable world power-- America?


Not New York, but Egypt´s Sinai just endured a deadly attack on five military units that killed seventeen people.  These were Sunni terrorists helped by Hamas, Palestine´s terrorist organization.  Please ask our president and Hillary why they supported former Muslim Brotherhood leader Morsi. Don´t they remember that Adolf Hitler also came to power through free elections? Also ask them, Donald, why they still don’t fully support  Egyptian President El-Assisi, who saved Egypt from Islamic-fascism and Sharia law.  He  is one of the Arab leaders we most respect.  Egypt has been our traditional ally.  Like Jordan and emerging Kurdistan, he is also Israel´s partner in fighting Islamo- fascist terrorism. We should help him and also directly arm our faithful allies, the Kurds.


Very frankly, Donald you misspoke when you mentioned negotiating with ISIS.  Please stop being obsessed with good negotiations as the chief technique in dealing with our foes.  Remember General MacArthur;  “There is no substitute for victory, “ and remind Obama our objective must not be to “downgrade” ISIS but  to destroy it.


You can´t negotiate with people determined to kill you; extremists who think that by doing so,  they can enjoy a paradise of perpetual fornication – including  ten times the 71 virgins if they get “martyred” during Ramadan.  Don´t forget that they can’t even touch their own women until they´re married, so raping infidels before they set them on fire, spray their eyes with acid or behead them, is a very big incentive.


Repudiate the Coming Iran Deal!


Shiite Iran is the other head of the Islamic Hydra.  President Obama is busy concluding a  catastrophic deal  with the mullahs, despite the threat of  subsequent Middle East nuclear proliferation.  Be bi-partisan and remind everyone that two previous secretaries of state, Condi and Madeleine, unfortunately contributed with well meant, naïve diplomacy, to  North Korea getting the bomb.  We must not  follow suite with Iran. What we must do is cage Iraq and curb her growing regional ambitions in South Yemen, Iraq and Lebanon.   Cuba, China and Russia


On Cuba -- Donald, try to curb the present enthusiasm the Obama administration has tried to generate about our opening towards Cuba.  A good idea and long overdue, it needed a better deal and more skillful negotiation.  As in the case of Bowe Bergdahl, the deal with Cuba is a bad one.  You are right.  We gave away valuable assets without achieving the massive release of human rights dissidents. Please aid Jeb and Marco who know this situation intimately.  The opening here is not similar to the 1989 Eastern European revolution and should not be ballyhooed as such.


On China -- better than almost everyone, you know that China is going through a major decline because of its own, inflated bubble economy.  You might get used to the idea that Macy’s will not only not be selling your ties, but China may not be able to produce them.  The country is approaching at best hard-lining, at worst, major upheaval.  Above all, you must concentrate on the fact that China, encouraged by our originally weak response to Russia´s aggression in Ukraine, is building  man made military bases in the waters of Southeast Asia.  


On Russia – Please never fail to mention the incredible naiveté of Hillary, when she used a gimmicky button to “reset” relations with Russia.  This was a year after the invasion of Georgia.  You don´t forgive Russia for invading a sovereign country!  You stand up to Russia!  Hillary´s error, combined with Europe´s laxness and Obama´s Red Line pullback in Syria,  helped to encourage the 2014 Crimea invasion. We were among the first to propose arming Kyiv in the April 21, 2014 Kyiv Post.  Our mistake, after the Crimean invasion, was not to apply  major energy sanctions to Russia and immediately deliver defensive weapons to Kyiv. We tried again in the same paper on April 22, 2015, showing how, Russian interventions have continually happened in the absence of our firmness.


Russian President Vladimir Putin understands, of course, that some  U.S. weapons are now going to Kyiv from Lithuania and Poland.  While praising Obama for the present deployment of NATO troops in the Baltic countries,  you should be critical of his naïve inability to openly provide defensive arms to Ukraine.  Like the Chinese,  the Russians respect power and decisiveness. We assure you, the Russians fear and have always feared a wider war with the U.S.


But to answer the questions posed by Andrei Kortunov, the Director General of the Russian International Affairs Council (RIAC), “Should we give up on Russia? Or, “Should we give up on Putin?”  the answer to both questions is emphatically no!  Kortunov was my counterpart in organizing a 1989 ground-breaking Moscow-Miami dialogue that also brought Boris Yeltsin to America´s then  most anti-communist city.  As we proposed in The National Interest, in our long term struggle with Islamo-fascism, Russia may yet become a close partner.  


We do not believe that your immigration fumble on Mexico is terminal.  Leni´s father, Herbert Friedman, Esq., the founder of jvlv.net,  once said, “Bad publicity is better than no publicity.”  In your case, all the ruckus may just be a testament to how strong a candidate you really are! Before we hopefully return Winston Churchill´s bust back to the Oval Office in 2016, let us recall the immortal words of his close friend and ally,  Franklin Delano Roosevelt.  On July 4, 1941, a few weeks after Hitler invaded Russia,  the man who attracted Democrat-later turned Republican Ronald Reagan, to national politics declared to the world,


“I tell the American people solemnly that the United States will never survive as a happy and fertile oasis of liberty surrounded by a cruel desert of dictatorship.  And so it is that when we repeat the great pledge to our country and to our flag, it must be our deep conviction that we pledge as well our work, our will and, if it be necessary, our very lives.”

With deep sincerity,

Dr. Jiri Valenta and Leni Friedman Valenta

Follow us at jvlv.net and @JiriLeniValenta on Twitter 



Tags:   Attacks on 3 continents      America ignoring global threat       Strategies of ISIS     Strategies U.S. must employ against ISIS     Immigration and terrorism   

 JVLV:  TRI-CONTINENT TERRORIST ATTACKS REQUIRE NEW U.S. STRATEGY
  
       
                                  By Jiri and Leni Valenta
 
                                                           June 29, 2015


June 26 was a day of profound significance and not just because of the landmark, U.S. Supreme Court decision legalizing gay marriage or the president’s eulogy for black worshippers massacred by a white racist in a South Carolina church.  Unlike in Great Britain, tri-continental attacks by Islamic fascists on this day have neither been fully appreciated nor understood in America and the danger is rapidly mounting!


What we received was another powerful warning that ISIS terrorists are involved in a strategy to expand their global reach well beyond the conflict periphery.  Horrendous attacks in three continents were surely coordinated, if not operationally, than ideologically, on the social media. All three occurred during the sacred holiday of Ramadan as an Islamic State spokesman called for turning Ramadan into a time of “calamity for the infidels.”  They also occurred during the catastrophic Greek crisis, threatening the entire structure of the EU and providing yet another opportunity for ISIS, as it seeks to weaken Europe and democratic West.


To the Islamic fascists, America is like it was to Hitler when he estimated that the U.S., in an isolationist mood, was simply so preoccupied with its domestic fissures it was less likely to focus on foreign aggression.  The expansion of fascism thus proceeded apace with Hitler in Europe, Italy´s Mussolini in northern Africa, and their allies in Japan conquering parts of China.   


Let us look at what the tri-continent attacks on June 26 accomplished and revealed.  Expanding its activities through north Africa, as the Italian fascists did in the 1940’s, Tunisia, with its fully democratic constitution and a cohesive government, has been a prime target. After the attack on a Tunisian beach, where 38 innocent European sunbathers were blown away by a 23-year old, radicalized student, expect economic problems for the country which depends on tourism. The government believes the gunman had accomplices.  This is also the second attack on Tunisia – the last one, took place in March on the Bardo museum, leaving at least 31dead.  


Kuwait, a Gulf state where 27 worshippers were killed and 227 injured in a Shiite mosque by a Saudi national, has been another peaceful area.  Shia and Sunnis have largely tolerated each other. Significantly, ISIS is now seeking to drive wedges in so far peaceful areas of the Middle East and Africa, adding to those on fire, including Iraq, Syria, Libya, South Yemen and Kenya, as well as the ongoing struggle in Afghanistan and Pakistan.


Naturally, the gruesome beheading of a U.S. factory owner in France cannot be compared to Nazis marching on the Maginot line. But it is worth noting that France, the most powerful nation with Germany on the continent, and with a large minority of emigrants from Islamic countries, appears to be another key and repeated target of the Islamist fascists.  Prime Minister David Cameron and President Francois Hollande recognize this; President Obama does not.


The aims of worldwide conquest are not new, but the strategies employed by ISIS are, and they are extremely dangerous as well as low cost.  They take advantage of the social media to recruit and organize, but they additionally have the new and added advantage of controlling a caliphate or Islamic state.  We are not at this point facing the tanks of the enemy marching through Europe.  What we confront however, are plans to infiltrate western countries, and repeated attacks on western tourists, military personnel, Jewish groups, Christians and U.S. interests.  Reportedly ISIS is also seeking nuclear materials for the making of dirty bombs.
 

Islamist strategies also take advantage of the massive immigration waves engulfing Europe, particularly with refugees from northern African Islamic countries.   Italy, Greece and Spain, the nations most affected if the Greek debt crisis deepens, are being besieged and crowded. Even Central European Hungary declares it cannot take more refuges.   Poor economic and social conditions, ethnic oppression and religious persecution have caused many peoples to leave their home countries hoping for a better life elsewhere.  But at least in the short run, they are over burdening and weakening the countries hosting them.
 

America is also being besieged by her immigrants at her southern border.  Moreover, it is wrong to assume that these immigrants are just Central American children.   Adult immigrants from Pakistan and Afghanistan, as well as African and Asian countries, are coming to our Mexican border through routes in Columbia, Panama and the Caribbean.  We have lost control here, as have the Europeans over their borders in Italy, Spain and Portugal. In the short run, the whole Western world is threatened – both in Europe and North America.  Moreover, among those waves of immigrants escaping for economic and social reasons, are undoubtedly some Islamists bent on terror.


Sooner or later, unless measures are taken to protect our borders, north and south, we are in serious trouble.  The recent search for two escaped criminals in upstate New York has shown how difficult it is to contain criminals or terrorists in difficult terrain close to the Canadian borders.  It took 1300 men three weeks to kill one of them and capture the other, demonstrating the enormous resources needed to halt an attempt to penetrate our northern borders by determined groups of terrorists.  


Recognizing that we are in a global, not regional war, we must also apprehend that we are facing not just the Sunni Islamic State, but Shiite Iran, and its allies.  As far as ISIS is concerned, our strategic objective must be not its downgrading but its total defeat. This is the only way to nullify the recruitments through the social media.  With Shiite Iran, the other Hydra, negotiation may be possible if it reins in its expansionist ambitions and gives up its association with terrorists groups like Hamas, an offshoot of the Muslim Brotherhood, and Hezbollah, a militant Shiite group.  


But no negotiation is better than one which permits Iran to gain a nuclear weapon.  Any agreement must assure full and unhindered verification of its nuclear activity.  Nor should Iran’s geopolitical ambitions be supported with the large removal of sanctions.  Iran must not be allowed to dominate Shiite Baghdad and the U.S. Air Force must not become a force in support of Iran´s Iranian Revolutionary Guards.  


The ultimate objective of militant Islam, whether Sunni or Shiite, is the creation of Islamic caliphates dominating world politics, the destruction of the democratic west and the death or enslavement of all infidels.  We must thus prepare for a total war lasting years if not decades.


Thanks to our follies and foes, there is a geopolitical transformation occurring in Iraq and Syria. The states created during the colonial era represent the unworkable past. We must not hinder the emergence of the new, independent, Sunni, Shiite and Kurdish states, and we must provide direct arms transfer to our staunch allies the Kurds, as well as adequate American boots on the ground.
 

President Obama has enjoyed some successes in domestic politics this week.  He deserves credit, but we wish he would focus on the global scene and the dangers to our security.  Above all he must give up the folly of an alliance with Iran against ISIS.
Neither our president nor the majority of Americans, seem even remotely aware of the danger. The Nazi fascists, at first insignificant to the democratic western countries, grew to encompass the deaths of 45 million people.  The ultimate objective of the Islamo-fascists is the conquest of Europe, northern Africa and ultimately, America.


Our southern borders still remain open.  Our response to the nuclear threat from Iran has not been met.  Our friends in the Middle East have not received sufficient arms and support from us.   Our short-sighted, poll watching, presidential candidates have not made foreign policy their priority!  The plans of the Islamists, like the disintegration of the WWI order under the Nazis, herald the greatest danger not only to Western civilization, but to the survival of the human race itself. The key domestic issue must finally be recognized as the foreign one. Our survival trumps all the others.


             
    
      JVLV:  THE FALL OF RAMADI SHOULD BE THE “THE END OF THE BEGINNING”

                                  By Jiri Valenta with Leni Friedman Valenta

                                                                May 20, 2015


“This is not the end.  It is not even the beginning of the end. But it is perhaps the end of the beginning.”  So said Winston Churchill forging anti-Nazi strategy with FDR at the start of WWII.


Let´s hope our president will now follow Churchill´s dictum.  The fall of Ramadi was triple sugar coated by the his administration.  First, the forthcoming defeat was announced by General Martin Dempsey, who incredibly stated, “…it wouldn't be a symbolic defeat for the Iraqi government”.   Then came a raid by our Delta Forces in Syria who killed a mid-level, ISIS official. And lo and behold, a day after the fall of Ramadi  came the revelations of some carefully selected documents by the White House that our heroes captured from the 2012 raid on Osama Bin Laden earlier.  Why now?

 
Nothing new.  Churchill also mitigated the pain of the disastrous fall of Norway in 1940 by sending a joint task force of British commandos and Norwegian resistance fighters to Norway for a raid.   But let´s get real.  Ramadi was a symbolic as well as major defeat.  Again we saw that Iraqi forces were unable to withstand the ISIS onslaught. Once again they ran and left the equipment we gave them. If ISIS decides to attack Baghdad they will come in our Shermans and Humvees.

 
 Recall, this is the second fall of Ramadi  in nine years, this important Anbar capital, which sits on the Euphrates River and on a strategic highway from Baghdad to Syria and Jordan.  For ISIS, Baghdad is their Paris and the fall of Ramadi should ring bells and flash red lights throughout our national security establishment.


The defeat must suggest to our allies in the Middle East and Europe that we are not serious about winning the war.  Will American boots on the ground come only after the fall of Baghdad? Imagine if Woodrow Wilson had continued to refuse sending boots to Europe as General Ludendorff’s 1018 offensive towards Europe was in progress.

 
A second reconquest will not be easy.  During the Iraq War, we reconquered Ramadi with the surge, but only at the total wartime cost of over 4,000 Americans killed and thousands injured.  Sacrifices will again be necessary.  But we have to consider what´s at stake.  The Ramadi catastrophe has serious repercussions on our efforts to contain our Great Power competitors, Russia and China. First regional:  We cannot allow Ramadi to be liberated by pro-Iranian Shi-te militia, a move that would further strengthen Teheran´s control over Baghdad after their advances in Lebanon, Libya and South Yemen.


Second, global:  Can you really expect Vladimir Putin will take us seriously and forge with us a lasting peace in the Ukraine and perhaps thereafter form a global partnership with us against the Islamists are conceived as losers  the Middle East?  Can we expect the pivot to the Far East to be taken seriously if we are unable, with our present declining naval forces, to deal with the war in the Middle East?  In sum, Ramadi’s fall should be an awakening that the ISIS strategy, if we indeed have one, is unraveling and posing a threat to western civilization.


Imperative now are realistic assessments and bold actions.  General David Petraeus should not be forgotten at this juncture.  His crime was of the heart – sharing information with another patriotic military person.  One wonders what he may know that it was necessary to silence him.  But all efforts should not be spared to pardon him and make him a senior advisor to Ashton Carter.  We´re sure David is aghast at the hare -brained thought of letting the Iranians help win back Iraq.


Meanwhile, the fall of Ramadi has resurrected the acrimonious debate over W´s 2003 invasion of Iraq, to the detriment of brother Jeb, who stumbled on a reporter´s question about what he would have done.  To fellow Floridians, Jeb is one of our best governors; centrist and accomplished.  But to be elected he needs to put his loyalty to the country before his loyalty to his brother and W´s  close associate, Condi Rice.  The stumble was not serious.  But if we believe Don Rumsfeld´s, Dick Cheney´s and George Tenet´s recollections about Condi´s role in decision-making on Iraq, but also on North Korea, than bright and honorable Jeb, has to fully and irrevocably disassociate himself  not just from his brothers policies, but from his brother´s  team.  


Although W acted remarkably well in the wake of 911 and in Afghanistan, NSA Rice, and some of her associates, continually failed him.  Driven by her fight for turf, she did not anticipate 911, when repeatedly warned by the CIA Director, George Tenet and NSC anti-terrorist section head Richard Clarke, and she and her team rushed to war with Iraq. Her poor management is recalled by former Defense Secretary Don Rumsfeld and former Vice President Dick Cheney, her prevarications by reputable analyst Peter Bergen.


“The Decision Was Made,” Rice told Richard Haas.  In July 2002, Haas, the current president of the Council on Foreign Relations, was the Director of the Policy Planning Council at the State Dept.  He is not only formidable, but very honest.  He was surely surprised when Rice told him additional vetting and discussion about the invasion of Iraq was not necessary by his Council.  But it was!  Condi and her team, engaged in group-thinking,   did not examine the evidence for the invasion carefully enough and even at times, as Tenet revealed in his memoir, manipulated it.  Finally it was she who okayed Malaki becoming Iraq´s Prime Minister., Yet Condi is back serving as Jeb´s influential advisor along with Paul Wolfowitz, another architect of Iraq´s disaster.
 

There is no doubt that, as ever, her ambitions are driving her to try to become a vice presidential candidate to Jeb.  Big mistake!  A great socialite and PR stunner for W, she can now be only a detriment to his brother as the national debate will again ensue as to who lost Iraq.  Many will argue it was W and Condi.   Hopefully Robert Gates, her present business partner, will not advise Rice to push her candidacy.  The country and Jeb both need a clean sweep.


Meanwhile, the second catastrophe of Ramadi is on Obama.  Had he left a residual force in the country, Ramadi would not have fallen.  Had he taken the ISIS threat seriously a year ago, the catastrophe could have been avoided.  Instead, as watchdog group Judicial Watch, has revealed, he knew that even while he was pushing his supposed decimation of Al Qaeda in 2012 to win an election, that ISIS planned to build a caliphate.


The president and his team now have to come to grips with the overall battlefield – the globe!   What is missed by the White House?  ISIS strategy in Europe is not a blitzkrieg with tanks but deadly selective attacks on the military and security personnel of the allied nations helping with our air campaigns in Syria and Iraq, as well as Jewish institutions.   How many Americans know that NATO soldiers in various countries have been asked to live and appear anonymously without uniforms? ISIS is planning a similar strategy for America as the Texas incident suggests.


The remaining Jews of Europe are as much hated by ISIS as the large number of Christians in the Middle East.  They Islamo-fascists don´t need a sophisticated network to recruit.  Social media is sufficient unto the purpose. Immigration has to be regulated in such a way that it will not impinge on our national security particularly at our  southern borders. As some of our generals warn,the open southern borders, are a natural ingress for terrorists.  The time has come for this country to retake our borders!


We hope that Secretary Carter and the new chairman of the Joint Chiefs will prevail upon the president to augment our presence in Iraq beyond trainers and Special Forces.  The perception of our allies must be changed dramatically. They have to know that we will not allow ISIS to hold Ramadi and Mosul and threaten Baghdad.  In short, if you want to stop the rush of young Muslims to Syria, you have to win the war and retake Ramadi ASAP.  Moreover, you cannot “downgrade” ISIS; you must destroy them.


We know that President Obama removed the bust of Winston Churchill from the Oval Office. Nevertheless, Churchill´s wisdom and spirit must remain with us.  We must recognize the Islamo -fascist threat for what it is.  We must send at least 10,000 troops, ground to air controllers,  combat units and Special Forces to Iraq and develop effective public diplomacy to explain the need for a more assertive strategy to the American people and the world.  To save western civilization in the nuclear age, they must finally understand the threat.  To quote Winston, “This must be the beginning of the beginning.”  

Jvlv.net   Follow us @JiriLeniValenta on Twitter