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The Assassination of Qassim Suleimani

Demonstration in Tehran Over U.S. Assassination of Qassim Suleimani
On Friday, an American drone fired missiles into a convoy leaving the Baghdad airport and killed Maj. Gen. Qassim Suleimani, who for decades has led Iran’s Quds Force of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps. Several officials from Iraqi militias were also killed.

President Donald Trump, speaking from his Mar-a-Lago resort, said,”Suleimani was plotting imminent and sinister attacks…” He did not provide any details or evidence of such. Given the President’s propensity for lying, the credence of Trump’s rationale can certainly be questioned.

Suleimani was definitely an enemy of America, but George W Bush and Barack Obama both had opportunities to take him out and chose not to because the benefit was largely symbolic and the cost was largely unknowable. Of course, neither Bush nor Obama were facing an impeachment trial in the U.S. Senate.

What the general public is missing in all the “Sturm and Drang” over impeachment is the detrimental impact Trump’s global actions — self-serving, ill-considered, or simply impetuous — have on American interests and on American lives. This is particularly true of this latest precipitous act.

The assassination of a revered Iranian leader undermines Iranian elements seeking regime change. It encourages Iran’s accelerated development of a nuclear arsenal. Because it was carried out on Iraqi soil, it forces Iraqi’s leaders to demand the removal of U.S. forces, opening the divided country to further Iranian and Russian influence. And it effectively neuters our NATO allies. Also, although unlikely to be discussed by authoritative sources, it very likely compromised significant elements of U.S. national technical means, if not HUMINT against Iran.

People have asked whether this action will lead to an American war in Middle East. My answer is, “Where the hell have you been for the last six decades!”*

 *The July 1958 Marine landing in Beirut, Lebanon began the modern era of America’s wars in the region.


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I was trying to give my heart to my cardiologist, let’s call him Dr. Sing.
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I had chronic pericarditis as a young man and my pericardium had to be removed. Without going into all the gory details, think of the pericardium as a partially inflated balloon into which the heart is shoved. The balloon, the pericardium, forms around the heart and acts (I’m guessing here) as a kind of shock absorber. Pericarditis is an inflammation of the pericardium. It can have a variety of causes. Mine was caused by an unknown and very persisten…

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My wife arrived in Lubbock, Texas, in November, bringing along my two sons, the youngest born in Florida without me in attendance. I had to tell her about the Surgeon General’s letter and try to assure her that everything would be okay; I felt fine and told her I had no doubt I would again pass the medical board. But would I? The Air Force was about to spend several thousand dollars putting a guy through an advanced degree program who’d been sick with a debilitating disease and had his chest opened not once, but twice in an effort to combat it, only to find it cropping up again, albeit in less severe form. Why take a chance?

My wife remembers me shopping for Thanksgiving and coming home with Cornish Game Hens. It was our first Thanksgiving together as a family of four, and the last time we had Cornish Game Hens for our Thanksgiving dinner.
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You've been diagnosed with prostate cancer; now what?

I am not an MD. What you read here is based on my own personal experience with prostate cancer, and how I went about deciding what to do about it.

It's been said that more men will die WITH prostate cancer, than OF prostate cancer. According to NIH statistics, over the period 2004 to 2008, 156 men in 100,000 were diagnosed with prostate cancer. That's an incidence of less than two tenths of one percent (.2%), but still a significant number, especially if you're one of them. Statistically, about 24 of the 156 men (15%) diagnosed with prostate cancer died of the disease. Of these, over 98% were over 55.

The incidence of prostate cancer rose dramatically in the period 1988 - 1992, probably because of routine screening for the disease using the DRE, and then the prostate-specific antigen (PSA) blood test. Since then the incidence has remained steady or decreased. The NIH estimates that 16.48% of men born today will be diagnosed with cancer of the prostate at some tim…