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“Sol Sanders”


One of the most ancient parables in Western culture is the tale of Caesar’s wife. For those who have forgotten or escaped a classical education, the story goes that after the death of his first wife in childbirth [when he also lost his son], Caesar chose to marry again. Having reached the heights of the Roman Republic as Pontifex Maximus, the elected chief priest of the state religion,

Caesar’s new wife would play a collateral role.

To acquire the necessary helpmate, Caesar turned to Pompeia, whose family like his had fought on the losing side in the Roman civil war of the 80s B.C. Following protocol for the Roman gentry, Pompeia was honored with a banquet and celebration as the “grand goddess”, a celebration attended only by women of high ranking families.
But a young male patrician named Publius Clodius, apparently in an effort to seduce Pompeia, managed to enter the charmed circle disguised as a woman,. When he was discovered, he was put on trial. But he was not convicted despite all Caesar’s efforts.

However, Caesar refused to accept the verdict He divorced Pompeia, declaring publicly that “my wife ought not even to be under suspicion.” Caesar’s call on the appearance as well as the reality of stringent morality has given rise to the daily proverb, “Caesar’s wife must be above suspicion!”

Leaving aide for the moment all the other accusations of corruption and perfidy thrown at Hillary Clinton, the fact that she is running for the highest office in the land requires the invocation of “Caesar’s law”. A corollary to Caesar’s law is that the higher an individual in public life reaches for office, the more stringent should be the requirements that he fulfill the appearance as well as the proof of incorruptibility. Public morality, even with all its inadequacies through the ages, remains the bulwark of democratic government.

There is no doubt that former Pres. Bill Clinton has further muddied the waters – whether with or without the collaboration of Attorney-General Loretta Lynch. Both as lawyers and current or former holders of high public office, would have had to know that any contact between them would be open not only to scrutiny but to condemnation. That Ms. Lynch now publicly acknowledges that it was a mistake to have met with the spouse of a subject of FBI investigation, and that she would not do it again [were she given the opportunity]. It is further complicated by the possibly Bill Clinton may become a co-defendant in the affair of the Clinton Foundation and its donors and, again, the appearance of their attempts at influence the affairs of government through the Clintons. It is more than conclusive that neither courted nor abided by Caesar’s Law.

It will take a Solomon, to invoke another icon of Western jurisprudence, to know where adequate and correct public policy now leads. As Ms. Lynch has said publicly, her meeting with Bill Clinton has cast a shadow over the whole process of investigation of Hillary Clinton’s activities. The refusal, thus far, of Ms. Lynch to exclude herself from participation in the whole investigation as a minimal step in the right direction, is incomprehensible. The Clintons’ defenders who point to the fact Ms. Lynch’s deputy is also an Obama appointee is beside the point.

Indeed, one of the first steps toward righting this sinking moral and legal ship is the appointment of a widely accepted public figure with a judicial background to take on the role of special prosecutor in this affair. Nothing less would remove it from the nest of intrigue and conflicting interest which this Administration has brought to it.

Vive la France! Sol Sanders

There are perhaps three all engulfing observations to be made from the horrific events in France this past Friday evening as the Muslim day of prayer and rest ended:

The enemy we face is as barbarous as has been seen in human history, even compared with the terrible atrocities of the 20th century in their contempt for all human values.
Our effort to eradicate them has so far failed – and particularly our intelligence when such a massive and coordinated attack could occur in a major world city without its interception.
We must spare no effort now – no half measures as the Obama Administration has perpetuated against Daesh [ISIS or ISIL] — in crushing them with the kind of all-out war we pursued during World War II when the Nazi foe represented the same kind of all-encompassing evil.

As the French and their allies, most of all the United States, continue to gather information about the attacks, we will no doubt discover interesting and informative details. They must be shared among the allies. We have a suspicion that all sorts of relatively minor considerations have prevented that being done adequately so far.

The misguided and dangerous Leftist canard that Muslim terrorists ie IslamoFascists are merely reactant victims of poverty leads to grotesque “PC” remedies that are doomed to fail..Sol Sanders

No — terror attacks are episodes in a continuance of the centuries
old battle that the civilised world has against the militarist, political
ambitions of the Muslim Ummaa — since its founding….

The warped Islamic
philosophy is inculcated in the madrassas — radical imams should be a prime
target for silencing…

Islam — not necessarily radical –seeks the
conversion or destruction of any but Muslim ( and indeed either Sunni or Shia
Islam — long may they battle each other, it is a partial salvation for the
non-Muslim world) adherents..


Sol Sanders, my friend, has done it all, as correspondent, commentator, writer, and observer. He is unique. During our decades long friendship he introduced me to Hibachi food during marathon lunches where he recounted places he has been and people he has met. He once introduced me to Jonas Malheiro Savimbi a charismatic Angolan political and military leader who founded and led the National Union for the Total Independence of Angola. It was at a small breakfast party in an Upper East Side apartment where Savimbi charmed us, all the while carrying a barely concealed little revolver. Sol has known rogues and heroes and spies. It is all in his new book.

In wonderful prose Sol takes us behind the scenes of the seminal events of the last century- the Cold War, China, Vietnam and the leaders and spoilers owho shaped policy. Read it!.


ByAndrew R. Finlayson

“This is a gem of a book by one of the truly distinguished “Old Asian Hands” in the fields of journalism and scholarship. What is so appealing in this book and what sets it apart from so many other memoirs is the delightful prose style employed by Mr. Sanders and the wide range of very interesting people he has known during his long life. As someone who has spent a great deal of his adult life studying China and the other nations in Asia, I found his personal insights into the personalities that contributed to 20th Century Asia, both well known and unknown, absolutely fascinating. As a young China scholar, I often relied on the very accurate intelligence gained by a Roman Catholic Jesuit priest named Father Ladany. During the 1960’s and 1970’s, Father Ladany produced what I consider to be the most accurate information on events then transpiring inside the People’s Republic of China. Sol Sanders was a personal friend of Father Ladany his book is full of little vignettes about him that I had never heard before. His short, highly entertaining chapters, each devoted to one or two of the very interesting people he was know, are a pleasure to read and provide tidbits of information about these individuals you will not find anywhere else. I recommend this book highly.”

No Aid for a Cuban Dictatorship: Sol Sanders

After 50 years, later this month an American flag will again fly over the old U.S. Embassy in Havana and the Cubans will open their diplomatic representation in Washington.
Pres. Obama has justified the move because it was time to change a policy that has not worked. That, not to put a fine point on it, is not true. Over five decades Washington was able – sometimes with direct intervention as with the Contras in Nicaragua – to prevent the spread of the Castros’ Communism in Latin America. And it wasn’t for lack of trying by Fidel Castro with Soviet inspiration and help. The list of by Cuban Communist attempts to subvert other governments in the Hemisphere, sometimes with actual military infiltration, is too long to list here.
That, of course, poses the next question coming up quickly.


There is universal agreement that China is increasingly the U.S.’ No. 1 policy concern.
But perhaps never in the history of modern Sinology has there been such difference of opinion about what is happening in China and what – if anything – the U.S. should and could do about it.
One reason is some Old China Hands have changed sides rather abruptly, no longer convinced that there is “a peaceful rising China” — which incidentally is a slogan Beijing itself has dropped.
True, there have been times when there was enormous difference among China scholars, not least during World War II and immediately afterward when in 1949 the Communists took over. There were a lot of “they ain’t Stalinists, just agrarian radicals” around; some with very long greybeards still in business not having yet offered a mea culpa.


Two seemingly unconnected recent events but in reality intimately connected are sure signs that the war on terrorism is being lost.

Of course, we must begin with that old Chinese adage: When a fish starts rotting, it stinks first from the head. President Obama has undeclared the war on terrorism, refusing even to name the enemy. But it takes two to tango — and the Islamic terrorists cling to their effort to inflict hurt on the United States whenever and now, alas, wherever, they can.

The recent attack in Garland, Texas, revealed what the general public only had guessed: There are resident terrorists — some U.S. born, others naturalized citizens, some of Muslim descent, others converts to Islam — ready to spring into action. Whether, indeed, the Garland two were under the discipline of Daesh, the Islamic State, claimed or “lone wolves” operating on their own may be irrelevant. FBI Director James Comey confirms our worst fears: There are hundreds if not thousands of American Daesh sympathizers.


The Cuban fiasco

In that simplistic jargon characterizing Pres. Barack Hussein Obama’s worldwide “transformation” of U.S. foreign policy, the chief argument for his Cuban shift has been “[T]hese 50 years have shown that isolation has not worked.”

In the facts of history, in this as in so many other instances, Obama is wrong.

The fact is that U.S. policy toward Cuba, with its ups and downs, has been generally successful.

First, of course, the outcome of the Cuban Missiles Crisis of October 1962 prevented the Soviet Union from obtaining an advanced offensive weapons base just off the U.S. southern coast. The confrontation was a turning point in the Cold War. Moscow’s victorious march through control of Central and Eastern Europe and its threat to Western Europe began to be reversed when JFK back off Nikita Khrushchev’s gamble.

Secondly, the Soviet Union’s Cold War effort, using the Castros’ regime, to infiltrate and create other Communist states in Latin America was beaten back – in Costa Rica, Haiti, Nicaragua, Panama, Bolivia, Dominican Republic, Colombia. Indeed almost every Latin American government at one time or another was a target, if unsuccessfully.

That is not to say, of course, that American policy toward Havana was a string of unbroken successes, or that, in fact, it was always clear-headed.


One of the many anomalies of Pres. Barack Hussein Obama’s collapsing foreign policy is Washington ’s growing rift with Israel , despite the two countries’ historically intimate ties at every level.

Obama’s fundamental antagonism toward Israel was always apparent: during the 2008 campaign he announced one of his “transformations” would be putting “light between the U.S. and Israel ”. Nor were his various close relationships to bitter American Israeli critics secret: Obama sat through two decades of anti-Israel, anti-Semitic sermons by the Rev. Jeremiah Wright, in turn a friend of the notorious Louis Ferrakhan. There was his close friendship with Rashid Ismail Khalidi, once Yasser Arafat’s Palestinian Liberation Organization spokesman. [Obama’s 2005 speech at a send-off party for Khalidid departing the University of Chicago for Columbia University is bottled up along with all his other records.] The traditional “Arabists” in the Washington bureaucracy – for example, Obama’s CIA Director John O. Brennan, who continues to deny “jihad” is a call to war against the West – bring up the rear.