“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."

Friday, April 25, 2008

Tweety Came From a Tough Family

Closest living relatives of the mighty predator Tyrannosaurus rex are modern birds.

I know there is some ironic Kantian lesson to be learned here, but that is best explained by someone else. (Bobal, please be a chap, step forward and explain this to us.) If there is a political lesson, it is the ability of all living thinks to adapt to almost any change.


Tests Confirm T. Rex Kinship With Birds

Published: April 25, 2008

In the first analysis of proteins extracted from dinosaur bones, scientists say they have established more firmly than ever that the closest living relatives of the mighty predator Tyrannosaurus rex are modern birds.

The research, being published Friday in the journal Science, yielded the first molecular data confirming the widely held hypothesis of a close dinosaur-bird ancestry, the American scientific team reported. The link was previously suggested by anatomical similarities.

In fact, the scientists said, T. rex shared more of its genetic makeup with ostriches and chickens than with living reptiles, like alligators. On this basis, the research team has redrawn the family tree of major vertebrate groups, assigning the dinosaur a new place in evolutionary relationships.

Similar molecular tests on tissues from the extinct mastodon confirmed its close genetic link to the elephant, as had been suspected from skeletal affinities.

“Our results at the genetic level basically agree with what has been seen in skeletal data,” John M. Asara of Harvard said in a telephone interview. “There is more than a 90 percent probability that the grouping of T. rex with living birds is real.”

Dr. Asara and Lewis C. Cantley, both of Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and Harvard Medical School, processed the proteins from tissue recovered deep in bones of a 68 million-year-old T. rex excavated in 2003 by John R. Horner of Montana State University. Mary H. Schweitzer of North Carolina State University discovered the preserved soft tissues in the bones.

For the molecular study, Dr. Asara and Chris L. Organ, a researcher in evolutionary biology at Harvard, compared the dinosaur protein with similar protein from several dozen species of modern birds, reptiles and other animals.

Dr. Organ was the lead author of the journal report, which concluded that the molecular tests confirmed the prediction that extinct dinosaurs “would show a higher degree of similarity with birds than with other extant vertebrates.” The researchers said they planned to extend their investigations to include comparisons of T. rex protein with more species of birds, reptiles and other dinosaurs.

Dinosaur paleontologists were not surprised by the findings. An accumulation of fossil evidence in recent years had given them increasing confidence in their contention that birds descended from certain dinosaurs.


  1. Poesia

    La Rondine

    la rondine vola per il suo senso di liberta' , la rondine vola perche' ama scoprire il mondo
    la rondine vola e vive ogni giorno
    in modo diverso
    la rondine vola per il suo senzo di capacita'
    la rondine vola per il suo senso di giustizia
    la rondine vola ed a volte si ammala
    la rondine vola lei non e' un dottore
    la rondine vola e non e' un infermiere
    la rondine vola solo per il gusto di amare
    la rondine vola e non sa odiare
    la rondine vede, la terra ed sole
    la rondine vola tra le stelle ed il mare

    la rondine e' rondine,
    non un predatore

  2. Poetry

    La Rondine

    the swallow flies for his sense of freedom ', because the swallow flies' loves discover the world
    the swallow flies and lives every day
    in a different way
    the swallow flies for his senzo of sleeps'
    the swallow flies for his sense of justice
    the swallow flies and sometimes falls ill
    vola the swallow you is not 'a doctor
    the swallow flies and is not 'a nurse
    the swallow flies just for the sake of love
    the swallow flies and does not know hate
    the swallow see, the earth and sun
    the swallow flies among the stars and the sea

    the swallow and 'swallow,
    not a predator

  3. Jack Yetiv on Seeking Alpha, in a series of articles on the competitiveness of solar:

  4. Saint Etienne - The Swallow

    She's like the swallow
    That flies so high.
    She's like the river
    That never runs dry.
    She's like the sunshine on the lea-shore,
    I love my love, and love is no more.

    It's out of roses
    She made her bed.
    A stolen pillow
    For her head.
    She's like the sunshine on the lea-shore,
    I love my love, and love is no more.

  5. Deuce, in case my post got lost in the shuffle, I'd like to apply for the job of deputy barkeep again.

  6. To drag up from the previous thread a succinct exchange:


    Blogger Cutler said...

    McCain sucks, Obama and Hillary suck more - next question.

    Blogger 2164th said...

    I think that about sums it up.


    It reminded me of this Timothy Garton Ash article I read yesterday. I've copied the whole thing as my source is a membership thing:

    Coming soon: the big U.S. fizzle

    No matter who wins the presidency in November, disappointment will rule supreme


    Professor of European studies at St. Antony's College, Oxford

    April 24, 2008

    Whoever wins the U.S. presidential election in November, the world will be disappointed.

    One obvious effect of the Democrats' interminable contest is to improve the chances of John McCain. In fact, this week's Pennsylvania result was the best Republicans could have hoped for. Hillary Clinton did just well enough to stay in the race, but not so well as to start swinging it the other way.

    Now the very election of a President McCain would already be a disappointment for a world fascinated by Barack Obama. There would be a sense of plus ├ža change and weary jokes about McBush. But Mr. McCain, unlike George Bush, has a biography that commands respect. I defy anyone not to be moved by the passages in his memoir Faith of My Fathers that recall his captivity and torture in Vietnam. For Republicans to describe him as an authentic American hero is, of course, political marketing; it also happens to be true.

    Unfortunately, that doesn't mean he'll make a good president for this era. If we were engaged in a Third World War against a new Nazi Germany, he would be; but we're not. The multiple challenges the new president will face are in sum probably no less serious than the Nazi threat, but they require a different kind of leadership. Mr. McCain, I fear, does not have the temperament, the experience, the mindset or the international appeal for the demands of this moment. As a character, he's a volcano. He blows up, then it blows over - not ideal for statecraft. His mindset is of his age: In Iraq, he is in some deeper sense still fighting Vietnam. His appeal across the seas is distinctly limited.
    Print Edition - Section Front

    Section A Front Enlarge Image
    The Globe and Mail

    I continue to believe Hillary Clinton is better equipped to be a good president. Despite her recent braggadocio about Iran ("we would be able to totally obliterate them"), I think she has the temperament, experience and mindset to be what the world needs in Washington: a safe pair of hands. On paper, her experience is less than Mr. McCain's, but that ignores the extraordinary character of the Clinton White House in which she was far more than a conventional first lady. In fact (and avoiding all references to Macbeth and his wife), the partnership of Hillary and Bill is one of the most formidable in political history.

    Despite the failure of her own health-care reforms - indeed, partly from that bitter experience - she knows exactly how the increasingly dysfunctional machinery of government works in Washington and which greasy levers to press. Mr. Obama is right: She's an old-style insider. And Mr. Obama is wrong: That's one of her great strengths.

    A year ago, we would have said she has the international appeal, too. We worried about a seemingly endless alternation between Bushes and Clintons, but the woman the world knew as Hillary was an amazing brand, with global pop star Bill as, to quote his own excruciating borrowing from a Scottish friend, her potential "first laddie." (A Scottish joke is no laughing matter.) But that was before Obamamania. Ms. Clinton's fate is that of the brilliant golfer who has the misfortune to be around at the same time as Tiger Woods. Everything is relative. So now, even as superwoman Hillary smashed the ultimate glass ceiling, there would be a worldwide twinge of disappointment.

    What if Mr. Obama wins? Well, first of all, it's looking less likely. Speaking to Jon Stewart on The Daily Show this week, he said: "Senator Clinton has done me a favour." After her assaults, he's better prepared to withstand an offensive by the Republican attack machine. But the truth is, the Punch and Judy show has not made either of them look better. Pennsylvania has highlighted his failure to win over blue-collar white voters and the so-called Reagan Democrats. According to John Dickerson of Slate magazine, Mr. Obama's leaked remarks about economically disadvantaged small-town people who "cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren't like them" have definitely hurt him. Among the primary voters in Pennsylvania, Mr. Dickerson reports, Ms. Clinton won the support of 60 per cent of gun owners, 59 per cent of small-town dwellers and a majority of religious believers.

    But suppose Mr. Obama does win. Well, people around the world would be thrilled - and filled with hope. That would be his first problem. The expectations are so high they can't possibly be fulfilled.

    If Mr. McCain and Ms. Clinton have question marks over their experience of government, they look like George Washington and Abraham Lincoln compared with Mr. Obama. His inexperience has showed on the hustings, and it would show even more in the Oval Office. Unlike Ms. Clinton, he wouldn't know which greasy levers you have to push in the dark and dirty boiler rooms of Washington - and, initially at least, he might be squeamish about it. (The foreign policy record of inexperienced Democratic presidents in their first term is not encouraging: from John Kennedy to Jimmy Carter to Bill Clinton.)

    Then there's the difference in America's position in the world, as compared to JFK's time. For all the systemic difficulties in store for China, for all the continued strengths of America's open society and its military preponderance, its relative power has diminished, is diminishing, and will continue to diminish. This is true of its economic power, above all, as the nation has lived beyond its means, government spending has been skewed to the military, and the mighty banks of New York go cap in hand to the sovereign wealth funds of Arabia and Asia. Sound like JFK he may, but Mr. Obama's United States will not be able to "pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend." It can no longer afford the price.

    So whatever the election result, prepare for a big disappointment. Then you might not be so disappointed."

  7. Fri Apr 25, 09:12:00 AM EDT

    She likes to swallow,
    My Cums like a River,
    I rise so high,
    Trumps Tower's
    Like a Sliver.


  8. "So whatever the erection result, prepare for a big disappointment. "

    - Ash

  9. (McCain sucks, Obama and Hillary suck more - next question.)

  10. Senator Cain:
    "out of touch with reality"

    WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Republican U.S. presidential candidate John McCain accused North Carolina's Republican Party of being "out of touch with reality" over its refusal to pull an advertisement criticizing Democrat Barack Obama.

    Please explain, 'Rat:
    You've said he was "mad."
    What is your evidence?

    I cite the link above as proof that he is

  11. McCain:

    McCain says N.C. Republicans out of touch over ad
    Fri Apr 25, 2008 8:44am EDT

    WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Republican U.S. presidential candidate John McCain accused North Carolina's Republican Party of being "out of touch with reality" over its refusal to pull an advertisement criticizing Democrat Barack Obama.

    In an NBC interview aired on Friday, the Arizona senator said he has done all he can to persuade the state party to cancel the television ad that criticizes Obama as "too extreme" because of controversial remarks made by his former pastor, the Rev. Jeremiah Wright.

    "They're not listening to me because they're out of touch with reality and the Republican Party. We are the party of Abraham Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt and Ronald Reagan and this kind of campaigning is unacceptable," McCain told NBC's "Today" Show.

  12. (THE out of touch w/reality, not the mistaken "swallow" link that got copied by mistake)

  13. Maybe I'll join Rufus. We do not need another boy scout in the oval. Hillary is looking more ovular daily.

  14. McSuck Feingold:

    Replaying actual FACTUAL coverage,
    "out of touch with reality"

  15. I liked Timothy Garton Ash's "she knows what greasy lever to push" but that presumes that you are keen on her succeeding in pushing her agenda. Dubya was backed by good lever pushers - Cheney to be specific and it just increased the power of his bad decisions...

  16. Copy last...clarifying question as to whether too old... waiting... further data needed...confidence rising...more soon.

    Too Old.

    ...I blame it on DC and the Bud Wife, not the N Viet Commies.

  18. "First, there was the question of sweet things like care and tenderness. "If he makes you swallow, he really doesn't love or respect you." This is all fine and good, but quite frankly, when was the last time you hooked up with someone who respected you, much less loved you?
    High school?

  19. That's why I've temporarily dropped out of politics. It's just too painful.

  20. Being that quote was from
    'Rat will proclaim it another
    "Boner Conspiracy"
    Trish Moans.
    (but we won't tell why)

  21. (It's gonna take the Second Cuming to bring Rufus back into the "fold.")

  22. But... Rufus,
    It hurts so Good!

  23. Reality 2008:
    The Daily News is so painful,
    it brings a Viet Vet Marine to his knees.

    He ain't nuthin but Cat Vomit.
    Trust me.
    - Citizen Cain

  24. Methinks there's a chink in the thincks:
    "If there is a political lesson, it is the ability of all living thinks to adapt to almost any change."

  25. Anybody got
    Dr.Chris L. Organ's
    e-male address?

  26. "If there is a political lesson, it is the ability of all living thinks to adapt to almost any change."
    Can subject "Rufus" adapt to life in third-world, non-English speaking cities on welfare that he thought he fought for?

  27. 2164th: Maybe I'll join Rufus. We do not need another boy scout in the oval. Hillary is looking more ovular daily.

    If Hillary can become a beer-swilling duck hunter for the Pennsylvania primary, remember that Obama was born to a white mother and fondly remembers listening to the Carpenters with his white grandparents. Bill Clinton was the first black President, Barack Obama just wants to be the 44th white one.

  28. This comment has been removed by the author.

  29. drag as the real "Black Guy"

  30. He also "remembers" his grandmother as a racist bitch.

  31. If you take politics out of it the coming decade looks to be the most exciting ten years in the history of investment. Imagine, a whole world of increasingly connected people changing over to an entirely new way of doing business.

    I just ain't got time to worry about three fools and their quest for self-aggrandizing power. Too much to do.

  32. " Imagine, a whole world of increasingly connected people changing over to an entirely new way of doing business."
    Except for the Blacks ethnically cleansed from UNITED STATES CITIES by the Latinos just doing their business, and the Chi-coms sending over their lethal injectables.

  33. Investment in WHAT?

    Damned near anything, as long as you stay away from airlines, and anything else that must use fossil fuels.

    Ag, biotechnology (gene-splicing,) solar, wind, Marine, Waste,

    Think, Recycling, and Efficiency -

  34. Rufus: Damned near anything, as long as you stay away from airlines, and anything else that must use fossil fuels.

    Deregulation has sucked for the airlines, their profit margins are so slim nowadays they're charging for the peanuts and half-a Pepsi they give you in a little plastic glass when you're over Nebraska on your way from Seattle to Atlanta. Someday fuel prices will be so high that most folks will just stay home, they'll take out the coach seating and put conference tables in the cabin. So I'd say airline stocks are a "buy". Its not about fuel prices, its about what they charge over and above the cost of flying a hop.

  35. Case in Point.

    You may, or, may not, agree with the route Ohio is taking; but, that's the way it is in State after State, and Country after Country.

    Keep one other thing in mind. Natural Gas has quietly levitated to almost $11.00 mbtu. It's getting harder to find, and more expensive to extract as the newly-discovered fields are getting smaller, and smaller.

    Some think that nat gas will "peak" soon after oil.

  36. I considered purchasing a few shares of Change but then nothing would happen....
    I was saving some change to spend on Hope but I lost it.
    Deuce set me up another dark rum and pineapple juice would ya?

  37. 'Rat thinks McSuck is "Mad."
    I think he is a fucking IDIOT!
    Prove me wrong!

  38. "Keep one other thing in mind. Natural Gas has quietly levitated to almost $11.00 mbtu."
    Keep in mind:
    I've "levitated" to almost

  39. How about a COAL PLANT to produce ELECTRICITY, (and CO2)
    Too combine CARBON (co2)
    to CREATE

    (heard it on the Miller show)

  40. Doug, Thanks but I have a one, permanent, 24/7...ever since the "accident"...sometimes its more like a ringing though.

  41. These two stories caught my attention this morning.

    BP is a despicable gaggle of assholes; but they're not stupid.

    BP invests in Brazilian Ethanol

    GM invested in This One. They're opening their First Pilot Plant early in 09'.

  42. Yea,
    but "Rufus" ain't got no COAL Powered, electrically generated,

  43. Ethanol SUCKS!
    (except for a good buz)

  44. Doug, I, personally, have no problem with coal, or nuclear. I think both will be good businesses in the future. They might be GREAT businesses. I don't know.

    As the man on on CNBC said while ago, "Only the Liars are for sure."


    I'm betting on Ag related industries. Only so many pennies in the dollar, you know. :(

  45. This is for Joe Buz. Best rum on the planet and from Nicaragua.

  46. Doug: Keep in mind:
    I've "levitated" to almost

    You should lay off the burritos. Levitation should derive from an "internal power", but not that kind of power.

  47. "Flower of the Cane" 7 year old thanks 2. I'll keep an eye out for it. Are the 12 and 21 year aged products much better? How was your trip to my beloved Virginia?

  48. McCain today reminds me of McCain/Feingold.

    Not good.

    If this keeps up, I'll be tempted to stay home on election day.

  49. I've got no problem choosing between the Turd Sandwich and Giant Douche, if not for patriotic reasons, then simply as a matter of self-preservation. That's not to say there are no legitimate reasons not to choose one. There are obviously scenarios where losing in the near term leads to long-term dividends. That requires a pretty strong faith in your own predictions, however.

    For the moment I'm at ease with the Turd Sandwich, but I don't want any illusions regarding what I'm taking a big giant bite of.

    And Whit, I heavily suggest you at least vote for the other offices so as not to compound the damage.

  50. We haven't even seen the VP selection yet.

    Regardless, start stocking powder for the 2012 primaries.

  51. There may be some Kantian relationship here, but it escapes me. It may have evolved.

    Michael Cremo was on C2C last nite. I've seen his book around. Says our species has been around a long long time. Maybe couple billion years. Every other archaeologist says he's full of crap, maintaining the standard, by now, line that we are relative newcomers, in our present form.

    Some of his evidence is from things like anatomically fully human skeletons found in old coal beds, seemingly machined tools or ball bearing found in very old layers, etc. Even a dino footprint over a human.

    Well spoken, certainly didn't sound nuts. Got ont the subject of religion; he's in the perennial philosophy tradition.

    Debunkeded mildly the idea we might have almost been bumped off 70,000 years ago, but said it's hard to tell. Did affirm the idea human populations have waxed and waned many times over all that time span.

    The Linda Howe came on, and among other things dire, maintained that the ethanol business is a disaster for everybody but the corn farmers, and Carlyle Group which seems to own some ethanol plants, reaping big subsidies.

    Food to Fuel. Our entire corn crop going to fuel. People around the world will die for it. Should be importing cane from
    Brazil, much easier to use. But the fix is in, fixed by the corn farmers and Carlyle.

  52. For Rufus--

    Republican U.S. presidential candidate John McCain accused North Carolina's Republican Party of being "out of touch with reality" over its refusal to pull an advertisement criticizing Democrat Barack Obama.

    McCain's accusing everyone else of being nuts, a sure sign...:)

    You're CRAZY!

  53. Soft white wheat has dropped to around $8.00/bushel around here, hard red a little higher.

    Rice going up.

    The world's at a scary point. Any more short harvest's would make things tough.

    In the United States we'
    ve had cheap food up until now. Now we are subsidizing food for fuel, a real departure, it seems to me.

    Certainly no one political party to blame for this. When we create legislation pandering to interest groups, and farm state senators, it brings up odd situations. Why aren't we importing cane from Brazil? Or Cuba? for that matter.

  54. Cutler: We haven't even seen the VP selection yet.

    If McCainiac picks Condi, I'm there. If he picks another dude almost as old as he is like Haley Barbour or Jack Kemp, fuhgeddaboudit, this race will be 1996 all over again.

  55. I wouldn't be surprised if he picked Lieberman.

  56. "Soft white wheat has dropped to around $8.00/bushel around here, hard red a little higher."
    You're Soft White.
    I'm Hard Red.
    Don't Forgetit.

  57. I wouldn't be surprised if he Licked Lieberman.

  58. "If McCainiac picks Condi, I'm there."

    Because she's a black woman or you genuinely like her work?

  59. The government was subsidizing that corn through price supports, Bob. You know that. We were subsidizing field corn so farmers could ship it to Asia to use as Hog Feed.

    The cost of a twelve oz. can of coke is up $0.02 due to corn. A $3.30 bag of corn chips is up a Nickel. A pound of beef is up about eighteen cents. It's all horseshit.

    The only grain that still really up a lot is rice. No one uses "Rice" for ethanol; and, no one raises corn in "Rice" Paddies.

    The CPI for food was up 0.2% last month.

    Look who's having problems with Food. Egypt, India, Haiti, Zimbabwe. Dictatorships, Communist countries, socialist systems with ridiculous tariffs (both, import, and export.)

    We'll do a little over 200 Million Barrels of ethanol this year, and that's pissing the Saudis, and the Oil Companies off mightily. They've been dreaming of this day since they drilled the first well, and now, it's estimated, ethanol is knocking $0.50 gallon off their price, and will, almost surely, knock a heck of a lot more off it in the future.

  60. Or the fact she's a moderate, George Bush I type.

  61. Jack Kemp:
    You really should listen to his debate w/Algore, Cutler, to round out your education.
    The Quarterback as whimpering Cocksucker.

  62. Rufus,
    Australia is working on a 6 year drought.
    The rest of the World, unusual freeze/drought conditions.

    ...gotta be ethanol,
    ...or global climate change.

  63. Fri Apr 25, 05:02:00 PM EDT

    Noted, for when I have time.

  64. Algore was pretty impressive when he debated Perot:
    Great Memorization/Regurgitation Skills.

  65. Almost forgot McCain's gratuitous shots at Bush re: Katrina.

    Not ingratiating.

  66. Cutler: Because she's a black woman or you genuinely like her work?

    I'm color blind, there are no races. But there are sexes. She's a true heroine and role model for me, and there are so few to look up to nowadays.

  67. Julia Roberts does not use deodorants.
    ...just ask Ophra.
    (a heroine of mine)
    Plastic Surgery?
    Not so much.
    (talk about that)

  68. "I'm color blind, there are no races. But there are sexes. She's a true heroine and role model for me, and there are so few to look up to nowadays."

    So then you'd vote for her because she's a women?

  69. I think Condamnesia faced more prejudice for being "black" than for being female, in her childhood.
    Still a piss-poor pol,
    whatever the case.

  70. Personally, I've got no shortage of role models.

    Or as I call them, people.

  71. Cutler: Or the fact she's a moderate, George Bush I type.

    I liked Bush 41, except for when he picked Dan Quayle and the lackadaisical campaign he ran against Clinton and Perot in 1992. Gulf One was a brilliant campaign. Would that we had the same team that nabbed Noriega to grab that al-Sadr asshole. Somalia was the one big foreign policy blunder that I can recall. Bush-41 also began to scale back the Defense Dept, which is my employer, but I suppose that was unavoidable. The recession was in 1990-91, but he let them talk Americans into thinking it was still on. Still, it's not a failure to be a one-term President, in my mind, if that four years is recalled fondly.

  72. We know where your mind resides, Cutler.

  73. Terri:
    Portrait of a mind as a seriously warped person.

  74. I got to see Dan Quayle's Helicopter land on the green at Kamehameha Beach III,

  75. THEN,
    I saw the man, himself.

  76. Dave Martin, 66, was training with a group near Fletcher Cove when the shark, likely a great white, struck. Photos Video Discuss
    Latest shark attacks in California
    More of the predators appear in state's waters
    Great whites: the mystery and the menace
    Evidently he predicted it.

  77. McCain has Obama/Ayers wired,
    probly smart to stay away from Wright.
    Still a worthless whore.

  78. (listened to Cain on Hewitt)

  79. Cutler: So then you'd vote for her because she's a women?

    You don't vote for VP, but yes, the presence of Condoleezza Rice on the GOP ticket would be sufficient for me to get excited about McCain for Prez, especially since Hillary isn't going to get the Dem nod. The Pub ticket would be a shoo-in this year. It would set Condi up for 2012 because I can't see McCain as a two-termer, 80 years old when he finishes up. There is so much upside here, that if McCain picks some bozo like Lieberman they will deserve to have their ass handed to them by Barack Obama/Wes Clark '08.

  80. I was meaning that subsidy for the ethanol, Ruf. Isn't that .57cents/gallon, or something?
    Maybe no one will show up at the voing booth, and we'll luck out.

    "What if they gave an election, and no one voted?"


    You don't vote for VP,

    Maybe not, but I voted for Laura as First Lady. I couldn't have stood that Heinz bitch.

  81. This comment has been removed by the author.

  82. In spite of the subsequent historiography, Gulf War I wasn't so brilliant, operationally or strategically.

    Strongest army in the world, with months of preparation, still failed to destroy much of the Republican Guard. Not because of any plan, but because President Bush and Colin Powell went wobbly at the last second due to bad press over the "Highway of Death."

    In view of subsequent events, debatable whether we even should have carried it out in the first place. But, of course, President Bush was a big New World Order kinda guy, which also gave us Somalia.

  83. In the big picture, the Gulf War resulted in the first major standing American presence in the Middle East in our entire history. For the purpose of containing a high-profile, decade-long running sore while entirely reliant on duplicitious neighbors who progressively constrained our ability to do so.

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