Politics A La Americana

Hi guys! Politics is both a hobby and a career for me. I recently attained my BA in Political Science from Boston University. I focused on on American domestic politics and American foreign affairs so this blog will mostly reflect that. My personal political beliefs run towards the more moderate/liberal side of things, depending on the topic. Please feel free to message me if you want to talk shop! I love this stuff way more than I should!

Although energy is still off the table (and I can’t really imagine it being in play ever) it looks like the EU had decided to get a little tougher with Russia. 

In a statement on Wednesday, Brazil condemned what it said was a  ”disproportionate use of force” by Israel in its Gaza Strip offensive by pulling out its ambassador from Tel Aviv for “consultation.” The country is the second country to recall its ambassador from Israel; Ecuador did so earlier in the week.

At first, the official reaction from Israel appeared sanguine. ”Brazil is a friend, but we think its position is not balanced,” Israel’s general consul in São Paulo, Yoel Barnea… Things soon took a turn for the worse. “This is an unfortunate demonstration of why Brazil, an economic and cultural giant, remains a diplomatic dwarf,” Israeili Foreign Ministry spokesman Yigal Palmor said on Thursday, the Jerusalem Post reports. “The moral relativism behind this move makes Brazil an irrelevant diplomatic partner, one who creates problems rather than contributes to solutions.”

Oh look, Israel’s making friends. 

politicsalamericana:

The way people on this website state opinions as if they were indisputable facts is legitimately frightening. 

And worse, other people accept their opinions as gospel. 

The way people on this website state opinions as if they were indisputable facts is legitimately frightening. 

Israeli media say the country’s Security Cabinet has unanimously rejected a US proposal for a temporary pause in Israel-Hamas fighting.

The proposal by Secretary of State John Kerry calls for a temporary truce during which Israel and Hamas would hold indirect talks about easing the border closure of the blockaded Gaza Strip. Hamas has demanded that Gaza’s crossings be opened.

Israel TV reports that on Friday evening, Israel’s Security Cabinet — which groups top ministers on security issues — rejected the proposal in its current form Friday, mainly because it would mean Israel has to cut short an ongoing effort to destroy Hamas military tunnels under the Gaza-Israel border.

There was no immediate Israeli government comment.

Associated Press -Jerusalem

So now each side has rejected a truce. 

thepoliticalnotebook:

This Week in War. A Friday round-up of what happened and what’s been written in the world of war and military/security affairs this week. It’s a mix of news reports, policy briefs, blog posts and longform journalism. Subscribe here to receive this round-up by email.

Photo: Gaza. A Palestinian man holds a young girl injured during the Israeli shelling of a UN school yesterday. Alessio Romenzi/TIME.

If you would like to receive this round-up as a weekly email, you can sign up through this form, or email me directly at torierosedeghett@gmail.com.

Hamas is committing war crimes, by firing at civilian targets and from civilian dominated locations. But, here’s the thing, one side’s crimes don’t excuse the other’s. Just because Hamas is committing these crimes doesn’t mean Israel has the right to act unilaterally, without regard to civilian casualties. 

We are outraged when an Indian police officer tells a rape victim she should marry her attacker but not when a California judge says a woman wasn’t really raped because she didn’t put up enough of a fight. We are outraged at 24,000 rapes in India but not 188,380 in America.

Hoopstatic - First World Problems

I really recommend reading the entire article. Trigger warning for discussion of rape and rape culture - it’s a tough article but very important. 

(Thanks to byunbbi for submitting)

(via thepoliticalfreakshow)

whitehouse:

This week, President Obama signed an Executive Order that prohibits federal contractors from discriminating against their employees on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity.

On Friday, join a conversation on the new Executive Order and steps the President has taken to expand opportunity for the LGBT community. Valerie Jarrett, Senior Advisor to the President, will host for a Tumblr Q&A this Friday, July 25 at 1pm ET.

Right now, you can ask your questions here on the White House Tumblr, and Valerie Jarrett will answer a bunch on Friday, July 25 at 1pm ET.

(via staff)

thepoliticalfreakshow:

A Nation & The World Mourns:Dutch military men carry a coffin containing the body of a victim of downed Malaysia Airlines Flight 17, during a ceremony at Eindhoven Airbase upon their arrival in Netherlands John Thys, AFP/Getty Images

More pictures from today’s memorial and hearse procession here.

inothernews:

Rocket fire between Gaza and Israel is seen in this photo taken from the International Space Station by German astronaut Alexander Gerst. He called it “my saddest photo yet.” (via Mashable)

Militant rockets can be seen launching from crowded neighborhoods, near apartment buildings, schools and hotels. Hamas fighters have set traps for Israeli soldiers in civilian homes and stored weapons in mosques and schools. Tunnels have been dug beneath private property.

With international condemnation rising over the death toll in Gaza exceeding 650 in the war’s 16th day, Israel points to its adversaries’ practice of embedding forces throughout the crowded, impoverished coastal enclave of 1.7 million people.

“Hamas uses schools, residential buildings, mosques and hospitals to fire rockets at Israeli civilians,” Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his Canadian counterpart in a call over the weekend, according to a statement from Mr. Netanyahu’s office. “Hamas uses innocent civilians as a human shield for terrorist activity.”

Nothing is ever so clear in the complex and often brutal calculus of urban warfare. There is no evidence that Hamas and other militants force civilians to stay in areas that are under attack — the legal definition of a human shield under international law. But it is indisputable that Gaza militants operate in civilian areas, draw return fire to civilian structures, and on some level benefit in the diplomatic arena from the rising casualties. They also have at times encouraged residents not to flee their homes when alerted by Israel to a pending strike and, having prepared extensively for war, did not build civilian bomb shelters.

Israel, for its part, says it takes precautions to avoid killing civilians, but has also accepted as inevitable that there will be large numbers of civilian casualties when it strikes at certain targets, like Hamas members in their houses, or offices, or mosques.

“It’s a bit of a fluid concept,” said Bill Van Esveld, a lawyer and senior researcher in the Middle East division of Human Rights Watch. “If you have any choice in the matter, you should not be fighting from an apartment building full of civilians.”

Some of Hamas’s tactics mirror those of other insurgent groups, like the Irish Republican Army and Nicaraguan contras.

“Hamas knows that it works to its advantage, politically and diplomatically, as the civilian death toll mounts, there is increasing pressure to end the war immediately, and what that typically entails, if past is precedent, is making some concessions to Hamas,” said Nathan Thrall, co-author of a recent International Crisis Group report on Gaza. “Hamas deliberately buries the weapons in populated civilian areas hoping that will reduce the chance that those weapons will be taken out from the air — that’s a pretty clear-cut case.”

Experts in international law say that even as Hamas is legally obligated to minimize its operations near civilians — and is committing a war crime by firing rockets indiscriminately — so, too, is Israel obligated to identify specific military targets and keep the risk to civilians proportionate to the threats the targets pose.

For people who were wondering I want to make it clear that I am neither Pro-Palestine nor Pro-Israel in this conflict. I respect Israel’s right to defend its existence and its citizens and Palestine’s right to fight an occupying force. What I have a problem with are the massive civilian casualties in this conflict and the way I see it both sides are to blame but there is a special onus on Israel, as the better equipped, better defended party, to make particular efforts to save the lives of innocents. Thus far neither side has made the effort it should and children, more than any other group, are paying the price. 

The Washington Post - Children Paying a Terrible Price in Gaza