The Oakland Post

OPINION: While you were away: Information Overload from the World of Politics

Isaac Martin, Contributor

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The economy

Starting the roundup near to home, President Donald Trump through one and a half years of office has already made history—and not just for the amount of hoopla surrounding his administration. Last Friday the Bureau of Labor released a jobs report with excellent news on the economy. Through the month of May, the unemployment level of Americans is at 3.8 percent or statistical full employment. Even more encouraging, African-American and Hispanic unemployment is at or near the lowest levels on record.

Israeli heist

In early January, over 50,000 documents and 10,000 CDs containing classified information were extracted from Tehran by agents of Mossad, Israel’s intelligence agency. It wasn’t until April 30, however, that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel—in an unveiling reminiscent of the late Steve Jobs—revealed the documents to the public as evidence that Iran had lied to the international community regarding nuclear weapons.

US withdrawal from JCPOA

The following week, citing the documents taken in Mossad’s heist, Trump announced that the United States was pulling out of the Iran deal and imposing sanctions on the Persian country. Trump is not operating on the assumption that Iran is essentially a good-willed nation and instead believes Iran’s leaders to harbor hegemonic aspirations for the Middle East. The Persian theocracy is perched in a precarious position: nationwide unrest, high unemployment and severe corruption among bureaucrats compound the effect of the new sanctions.  

Iran attacks Israel

Two days after Trump’s announcement, Iran and Israel exchanged fire in a potentially conflagratory confrontation. On the morning of May 10, Iran launched 20 rockets toward Israeli forces in the Golan Heights. Four rockets were intercepted by Israel’s Iron Dome defense system while the remaining 16 missed their targets. Israel responded quickly with an air strike on several key Iranian military positions in Syria. Though the exchange precipitated no major conflict between the two nations, experts were concerned at the time; the encounter marks the largest direct confrontation between Israel and Iran and very well could have escalated further.

A birthday surprise

After a brief respite, Israel’s 70th birthday was marred as riots erupted along the Israeli-Gaza border on May 14. Over 40,000 Palestinians gathered along the border, some attempting to breach the fence with IEDs, others attacking Israeli forces. According to estimates from a Hamas’ front group, 58 rioters were killed as the terrorist group attempted to distract from the historic event in West Jerusalem. There, led by Jared Kushner, a delegation of U.S. officials opened the first ever U.S. embassy in Jerusalem. The U.S. recognized Jerusalem as the capital of Israel in a bold yet nuanced move—respecting Muslims’ claim on Eastern Jerusalem in a manner consistent with a two-state solution.

Korean peace?

Last Friday, the Trump administration confirmed that the US-North Korean Nuclear summit is happening next week. This comes after the Summit was canceled two weeks ago by Trump. Though many are hopeful that North Korea will agree to relinquish their nuclear arms, Ronald Reagan’s maxim “Trust but verify,” has been the watchword of the hour. If an agreement is forged at this summit, enforcement and strenuous verification of Korea’s promises must be agreed. While peace is preferred, negotiations must not sacrifice security in order to appease a dictator à la Chamberlin. The United States must adhere to a strategy of peace through strength.

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