Reassuring Words From the President

I’ll be honest, I was concerned with the U.S.’ airstrike in Syria last week. I thought Trump had caved in to what Pat Buchanan calls “the War Party” and that we were surely on the road to greater conflict.

Ultimately I gave our president the benefit of the doubt. And I’m glad I did. New York Post:

Amid complaints that his aides are saying different things about Syria and his policy is confusing, President Trump emphatically cleared the air.

“We’re not going into Syria,” he told me yesterday in an exclusive interview. “Our policy is the same — it hasn’t changed. We’re not going into Syria.”

Britain Crosses the Rubicon, Nigel Farage’s Reaction

It’s officially official:

LONDON — A little over nine months after British voters chose to withdraw from the European Union, Britain took a decisive — and likely irreversible — step Wednesday toward leaving a partnership that has bound the country to the continent for nearly half a century.

With the simple handoff of a letter in Brussels in the early afternoon, the British government became the first to trigger Article 50 — the mechanism for nations to exit the European Union.

“This is a historic moment from which there can be no turning back,” Prime Minister Theresa May announced to a momentarily hushed House of Commons, before debate later turned rowdy.

How is Nigel Farage celebrating, you might ask?

“You’ve been triggered!”

London Terror Attack: ISIS Claims Responsibility, Name Not Released

You have probably heard about yesterday’s London terror attack by now. Horrific but unfortunately not surprising either.

The attacker had been investigated by MI5 in the past for violent Islamic sentiments. Despite that, British intelligence were apparently not aware of any specific plot.

And sure enough, ISIS claimed the attacker as one of their own. No one has released a name yet, however. Black Label Logic relays some wisdom on this:

Dutch Election: Mixed Feelings as Results Trickle In

Welp, Geert Wilders will not be the next Dutch prime minister. Mark Rutte, the current prime minister and candidate for the liberal People’s Party for Freedom and Democracy, holds a sizeable lead with 20% of the vote counted as of this writing:

VVD — People’s Party for Freedom and Democracy: 22%
PVV — Party for Freedom (Wilders’s party): 12.9%
CDA — Christian Democratic Appeal: 12.4%
D66 — Democrats 66: 11.7%
Green Party: 10.4%
Socialist Party: 9.4%

It’s not all doom and gloom, though. The PVV is on track to gain a few seats in the Dutch parliament. And although the VVD will win the election, they’re on track to lose several seats as well.

What sticks out is how poorly the PvdA—the Labour Party—is performing. They’re not even polling in the top six and will also lose the vast majority of their parliament seats. If the exit polls prove to be correct, the PvdA will become the seventh-largest party after being the second-largest. Yikes.

So what does this all mean?

1) The Dutch aren’t quite ready for nationalism. The PVV gained seats but may wind up in third place behind the VVD and CDA when every vote is counted. Wilders is by no means going away.

2) Despite not being quite ready for nationalism, the Dutch are clearly not pleased with the current state of the country. Voter turnout was massive and nearly every party besides the VVD and PvdA will gain seats. Rutte will need to organize a new coalition government, which could bode well for Wilders and the PVV.

*****

If you wish to follow live updates of the election, go here. We may not know the official results for several days, however. The Dutch are counting ballots by hand because they feared Russian hacking if they used technology.

A Ringing Endorsement for Marine Le Pen

This just might be the most ringing endorsement yet!

Reuters:

Outgoing French President Francois Hollande said in European newspaper interviews published on Monday that his “ultimate duty” was to prevent a victory of far-right National Front leader Marine Le Pen in this year’s election.

“My ultimate duty is to make sure that France is not won over by such a programme, and that France does not bear such a heavy responsibility,” said Hollande of the risk of a Le Pen victory in the election.

Approximately 90% of the French populace disapproves of Hollande. History teaches us that when the French become greatly upset over the government, the pendulum swings in the opposite direction.

But the 2010s are not quite the 1780s. The French election structure is such that if no candidate obtains 50% of the vote, the top two vote-getters head to a run-off election. The thinking is that most will flock to the liberal Emmanuel Macron if (or when?) it comes down to him and Le Pen.

Mark your calendars: the first round of voting takes place on April 23, with the potential run-off on May 7.

P.S. Dutch elections are next Wednesday, March 15. It’s anyone’s game!

Surprise, Surprise: Rioting Breaks Out in Heavily Immigrant Swedish City

Hey guys, look at what’s happening in Sweden!

No, for real!

Fox News:

Riots erupted in a heavily immigrant Stockholm suburb Monday night, as masked looters set cars ablaze and threw rocks at cops, injuring one police officer, Swedish officials said.

The violence in Rinkeby began around 8 p.m., when officers arrested a suspect at an underground station on drug charges, The Local reported. A group soon gathered, hurling rocks and other objects at officers and prompting one cop to fire his gun “in a situation that demanded he use his firearm,” police spokesman Lars Bystrom said.

No arrests were made; however, reports were filed on three violent acts, violence against a police officer, two assaults, vandalism and aggravated thefts, authorities said.

Almost 90% of Rinkeby’s residents are first- or second-generation immigrants. My intuition tells me most of them probably aren’t first- or second-generation Germans, Poles, or Brits, though.