And none of them good.
Let’s begin in the Gulf, with THIS:
BAGHDAD — Saudi Arabia cut diplomatic ties with Iran on Sunday and gave Iranian diplomats 48 hours to leave the kingdom, marking a swift escalation in a strategic and sectarian rivalry that underpins conflicts across the Middle East.
And as the accompanying question at WRSA ran, What generally follows the expulsion of diplomats? Anyone care to take a stab at the answer? Not to worry, though, I’m told that those people over there aren’t into mindless bloodshed.
Speaking of “over there,” here’s a related topic:
The Gulf states face the greatest challenge to their viability. Some, such as the UAE, a close ally of the West’s fight against terror, have such large cash reserves that they ought to be able to cope with low oil prices for decades. Others, including Iraq and Bahrain, will find it much tougher; Saudi Arabia has just been forced to pass an emergency budget. All will slash their purchases of Western assets and luxury goods, hitting the London economy.
The West will be hoping that the existing Gulf regimes aren’t replaced by something worse, while also hoping that the collapse in the price of oil will reduce flows of cash to extremist Wahhabi and Salafist groups around the world. If radical Islamist terror groups end up being the biggest losers, the collapse in the oil price could yet end up achieving more than sanctions or Western military intervention ever could; but a successful uprising in somewhere like Saudi could also risk turning a bad situation into a catastrophe.
I don’t know about you, but I’m damn glad that Our Steady Hand at the Helm of State (PBUH) has carefully maintained a strong national defense in the face of significant pressure to downsize, and ensured that our forces now on station over there are well positioned to show the flag and deal with any outbreaks. Whew!
And speaking of Our Glorious Leader— and don’t you dare criticize him, or you’re a racist– here’s THIS:
President Obama’s series of executive actions on guns will require background checks for those purchased from dealers even if they’re bought online or at gun shows, the White House announced late Monday.
The Justice Department’s Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives will also issue updated guidance that says the government can consider someone a gun dealer regardless of where the guns are sold.
The guidance aims to narrow the gun show loophole. Only federally licensed gun dealers will now conduct background checks on buyers.
Feeling transformed yet? No? Just you wait. 2016 promises to be a rollicking good ride.