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Syria Update: Mabij

SYRIA UPDATE: The Kurds have completely expelled ISIS from the city of Manbij. In this slightly outdated map, the Syrian Kurds are light yellow:

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/1/11/Syrian%2C_Iraqi%2C_a...

The Devil You Know

Once upon a time:

The devil you knew was superstition, the devil you didn't was reason.

The devil you knew was conjecture, the devil you didn't was knowledge.

The devil you knew was trepidation, the devil you didn't was discovery.

The devil you knew was tyranny, the devil you didn't was democracy.

The devil you knew was slavery, the devil you didn't was freedom.

The devil you knew was a woman in her place, the devil you didn't was a woman fulfilling her potential.

The devil you knew was segregation, the devil you didn't was inclusion.

Syria Update: Siege of Aleppo broken

MAJOR SYRIA UPDATE: The rebels have successfully broken the siege of Aleppo. Since half of Aleppo is controlled by the rebels and the other half by the government, this means that the other half of Aleppo is now to all intents and purposes under siege. SRO, who has returned from the brink of death to give us more leaks from the rebel high command, says that the rebels will probably try to cut off the small supply route to the north as well.

Syria Update: Aleppo and Mabij

Syria Update: After an accidental airstrike on a refugee camp north of Manbij, the Kurds opened a corridor to allow ISIS to evacuate. I'm not sure how many militants took them up on it, but a lot of civilians have evacuated. Fighting continues in the city's center.

A Hanson Reward

Why shouldn't we condemn Pauline Hanson as just another ignorant racist? Well because all the other ignorant racists didn't cost us $1.2 million this election.

How?

Under election rules, the Australian Electoral Commission pays parties and candidates $2.62 for every first-preference vote they get in each state or division in which they attract more than 4% of the vote.

When "Total Responsibility" means "No Responsibility"

In 2004 Prime Minister, John Howard, has said that he takes total responsibility for Australia's decision to join the war. However as the the Chilcot Inquiry has shown the decision to invade Iraq was most certainly a breach of international criminal law and and specifically a crime against peace.

Three Years of Governance

Today Malcolm Turnbull returned to the prime minister's office to commence another three years of insipid, dishonest, manipulative, underhanded, discriminatory, narrow-minded, economically inept and socially irresponsible government on the back of three previous years of incompetent, second-rate government.

Also on the this day, one hundred years ago, Edward Gough Whitlam was born.

Here is what he achieved in just under three years:

No Regrets

“I defend the decision that I took. I don’t resile from it. I don’t believe it was the wrong decision.”
- John Howard

So just to clarify:

In 2003 John Howard made a decision to go to war based on flawed evidence and inadequate planning.

A war that the majority of Australians did not support.

A war that was not sanctioned by the United Nations.

A war that did not produce any evidence of the weapons program that was used to justify the invasion.

Syria Update: Aleppo and Mabij

SYRIA UPDATE: The last rebel supply route to Aleppo (the green line on the map) has been cut. The rebels are gathering for a massive offensive to establish a new supply line in the south by punching through the regime's supply line. I'm skeptical that this will work, but you never know. It also sounds like the Kurds are going to be launching an offensive to establish a supply line between Afrin and Aleppo. Two important regime villages lie along that road, so I'm not sure what that would look like in practice.

The Day Before The Election

The Coalition will win tomorrow. The swing and the number of seats that Labor needs to win is too big and whilst they'll put a good fight, it'll be just out of reach.

With the Coalition returned, the price of housing will become increasingly out of reach, because the Coalition is the party that is wedded to the insane policy of taxpayer-funded subsidies to the landlord class, despite the fact that it is a miserable failure in providing new housing stock.

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