As we know, there were attacks at and near the Kabul airport yesterday that killed at least 90 Afghans and 13 U.S. service members (these numbers vary around news reports, these were the highest) and injured hundreds. So is this a game changer for the US, the Taliban, Afghanistan? Maybe. The attacks were perpetrated by ISIS-K, one of, if not the most dangerous terrorist group in existence. President Biden spoke from the White House and said,
“We will not forgive. We will not forget. We will hunt you down and make you pay,” Biden said.
He also committed to the August 31st deadline for leaving and the continued effort to get Americans and allies out of Kabul. Questions are current swirling about to what existent or, if any, the Taliban was involved in the attacks. Those answers will come later.
Now, It is hard for me to image the fears and terror on the ground in Kabul. What I know is that America cannot afford, morally or politically, to leave Americans or allies in Kabul. That would surely be a death sentence for them and that cannot happen. President Biden doesn’t recover from that. Right now, I think he will be fine in the end, assuming he gets everyone out, because we now have another focus, ISIS K. Thus, the decisions he makes in the days and weeks to come will determine how history really views this decision. Yes, its loud right now, but we are also still in the middle of it.
Behind the Bench
So while the world was looking to Afghanistan, the Supreme Court was making moves. First, they upheld a Trump era policy forcing asylum seekers to wait in Mexico for their hearings. Then, they took away eviction protection for an estimated 3.5 million people. In an unsigned opinion, (which I always find a little cowardly), the Court ruled the CDC lacked authority under federal law to impose the Aug 3 eviction moratorium, which would have expired in October.
“If a federally imposed eviction moratorium is to continue, Congress must specifically authorize it,” the court wrote.AP News: Supreme Court allows evictions to resume during pandemic
The three liberal justices dissented, pointing to the increase in COVID-19 cases as one reason the moratorium should be in place. But the court did not buy that argument. Now it’s up to Congress, so that means a lot of people are homeless with an eviction on their rental record.
Doing the Right Thing, Now
Spike Lee recently came under fire for a recent docu-series about 9-11, NYC Epicenters 9/11➔2021½. The final episode apparently included a conspiracy theorist, Richard Gage, founder of Architects and Engineers for 9/11 Truth. Their theory: the Twin Towers were brought down by a controlled demolition as part of an inside job. This theory has been widely debunked but still persists in some circles. Spike himself said,
“The amount of heat that it takes to make steel melt, that temperature’s not reached. And then the juxtaposition of the way Building 7 fell to the ground — when you put it next to other building collapses that were demolitions, it’s like you’re looking at the same thing. But people are going to make up their own mind. My approach is put the information in the movie and let people decide for themselves. I respect the intelligence of the audience.”New York Times: Spike Lee, Exultant at the ‘Epicenter’ The Root: Spike Lee Goes ‘Back in the Editing Room’ to Rework Final Episode of 9/11 Docuseries After Criticism for Featuring Conspiracy Theorists
Yet, after taking a lot of heat for the decision to include this conspiracy theorist in the documentary, Spike is changing his tune and will re-edit the final installment of the series. He asks that everyone reserve judgment until we can actually see it (the final episode), which will air Sept 11, 2021 on HBO.
OnlyFans of Sex
OnlyFans complete a perfect 180 degree turn. They recently stated they would ban sexually explicit content on their site because banks would not lend to them. Yet, they have reversed positions and said,
“We have secured assurances necessary to support our diverse creator community and have suspended the planned October 1 policy change,” the company tweeted Wednesday morning. “OnlyFans stands for inclusion and we will continue to provide a home for all creators.”NPR: Reversing A Planned Ban, OnlyFans Will Allow Pornography On Its Site After All
Riiiiiiiight. Now you stand for inclusion when you realize you don’t have any users without the very people you tried to exclude. Also in what universe are banks the arbiters of morality?