Categories: Editorial, OpinionWhen the president suggested that he could envision a limited nuclear war with our communist adversary, critics were “horrified” and “appalled” while the regime called his remarks “dangerous madness.” This does not mean nuclear war.If North Korea persists in testing, it could involve a targeted military strike taking out Pyongyang’s ballistic missile and nuclear facilities. To the contrary, it was part of an intentional campaign designed to get North Korea to understand that Trump, unlike his predecessors, is willing to use force to stop Pyongyang from threatening American cities. For decades, the North Koreans have believed that they are untouchable because they can incinerate Seoul with conventional weapons.Now, they are on a crash course to develop and deploy the capability to incinerate U.S. cities with nuclear weapons.They think the pursuit of these weapons is making them even safer.Trump is trying to convince them that the opposite is true.The best chance to prevent such a use of force is if North Korea receives and believes this message.So we’d all better hope that Trump succeeds. Furthermore, as my American Enterprise Institute colleague Oriana Skylar Mastro recently pointed out, “Kim understands that a second Korean War would end with his demise, and therefore he has incentives to avoid such escalation.“Assuming Kim is rational then, it is possible that the United States could conduct a limited surgical strike and North Korea’s response would be minimal.”Trump’s tweets are intended to prevent us from getting to that point.They are not only entirely rational but also strategically smart.Let’s hope his critics keep questioning his sanity, because it can only help convince Kim that Trump is serious.Marc A. Thiessen is a columnist with The Washington Post who writes from a conservative perspective. He is the former chief speechwriter for President George W. Bush.More from The Daily Gazette:EDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homesFoss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen?EDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationEDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motoristsEDITORIAL: Urgent: Today is the last day to complete the census On “Fox News Sunday,” CIA Director Mike Pompeo underscored Trump’s message, declaring that “We want the regime to understand that, unlike before, we are intent on resolving this and it is our firm conviction that resolving this diplomatically is the correct answer but that this administration is prepared to do what it takes to assure that people in Los Angeles, in Denver, in New York are not held at risk from Kim Jong Un having a nuclear weapon.”All those in the perpetual outrage machine who are calling Trump a “madman” for his tweet are also inadvertently helping him send that message to Pyongyang — just as Reagan’s critics helped convince Moscow that he was a madman.Are Trump’s threats of military action a bluff? No.As national security adviser H.R. McMaster recently explained, Trump is “not going to allow this murderous, rogue regime to threaten the United States with the most destructive weapons on the planet.”Trump tweeted in August: Two years later, Margaret Thatcher shared intelligence from KGB Colonel Oleg Gordievsky (who was working for the British) that Russian officials were increasingly convinced Reagan was getting ready for a nuclear first strike and was running drills to prepare for it.Indeed, NATO did carry out an exercise for a nuclear exchange — “Able Archer 83” — which included planes taxiing onto runways with realistic dummy nuclear warheads.Again, Reagan did not disabuse the Soviets of the notion.Quite the opposite: The next year he joked when testing his microphone before his weekly radio address “We begin bombing in five minutes.”The belief of Soviet leaders that Reagan might just be crazy enough to push the nuclear button constrained Soviet behavior and helped make possible a peaceful end to the Cold War.Now Trump is trying to send a similar message to the North Korean regime.His recent tweet telling Pyongyang that his nuclear button is “much bigger & more powerful” than Kim Jong Un’s was neither unstable nor stupid. The president in question was not Donald Trump.It was Ronald Reagan, who in his first year in office raised the possibility that the United States and the Soviet Union could survive an exchange of tactical nuclear weapons.That same year Richard Pipes, Reagan’s director of East European and Soviet affairs on the National Security Council, told The Post he thought the probability of nuclear war was about 40 percent.These remarks sent a signal to Moscow that Reagan was not like those who came before him.He did not want war, but he would not shy from one if provoked. That message was received.In 1981, then-KGB chief and future Soviet leader Yuri Andropov declared at a major KGB conference that Reagan “was actively preparing for war and that a nuclear first strike was possible.”
Update on the latest sports UNDATED (AP) — This year’s Tour de France will start on Aug. 29 and finish on Sept. 20 and will be followed by cycling’s two other major races. The International Cycling Union announced the new dates after organizers were forced to postpone the Tour’s scheduled June 27 start because of restrictions related to the coronavirus pandemic.The UCI also says the world championships will go ahead as planned from Sept. 20-27 and will be followed by the Giro d’Italia and the Spanish Vuelta. No official dates were given for those two major races. The UCI says prestigious one-day road classics will be maintained with dates still to be defined.In other developments related to the coronavirus pandemic:— Arizona’s governor says his state is willing to host all 30 major league teams when public health concerns allow, which eventually could lead to the start of the baseball season primarily in empty spring training ballparks. MLB and the players’ association have had preliminary discussion of potential ways for the season to start if given the go-ahead by federal, state and local governments and health officials. Having all teams based in the Phoenix area is among the contingency plans being examined. There are 10 spring training parks plus the Diamondbacks’ Chase Field, which has a retractable roof, and several college facilities.— Major League Baseball is cutting the salary of senior staff by an average of 35% for this year due to the new coronavirus’ impact on the season. MLB is guaranteeing paychecks to its full-time employees of its central office through May. Commissioner Rob Manfred announced the salary cut in a memorandum to staff, a copy of which was obtained by The Associated Press. Commissioner. He said the commissioner’s office will make all planned distributions to teams through May, The announcement Wednesday from the PGA Tour and the Nelson came three months after officials said the tournament was moving from the links-style Trinity Forest Golf Club.TPC Craig Ranch, which was completed in 2004, will be the first course outside of Dallas County to host the tournament that dates back to Bryon Nelson winning the inaugural event in 1944. Before moving to Trinity Forest in 2018, the Nelson was played for 35 years at TPC Four Seasons in suburban Irving.Trinity Forest, which was built on a former landfill south of downtown Dallas, was scheduled to host the Nelson for the third and final time in May. But the Nelson is among the tournaments canceled by the PGA Tour because of the coronavirus pandemic.VIRUS OUTBREAK-SPORTSTour de France pushed back 2 months Share This StoryFacebookTwitteremailPrintLinkedinRedditNFL-OBIT-WILLIE DAVISHall of Fame defensive end Willie Davis dead at age 85UNDATED (AP) — Willie Davis, a Pro Football Hall of Fame defensive lineman who helped the Green Bay Packers win each of the first two Super Bowls, has died. He was 85. The Packers confirmed Davis’ death to the Pro Football Hall of Fame on Wednesday, as did his former teammate and fellow hall member, Dave Robinson.Davis died in a Santa Monica, California hospital. His wife, Carol, told the Packers her husband had been hospitalized for about a month with kidney failure.A 15th-round draft pick from Grambling, Davis began his NFL career by playing both offense and defense for the Cleveland Browns in 1958 and ’59. He had his greatest success after getting traded to the Packers.He remained with the Packers until finishing his NFL career in 1969 as a five-time All-Pro. Although tackles and sacks weren’t measured at the time Davis played, his 22 career fumble recoveries showcased his dominance and big-play ability.He was voted to the NFL’s all-decade team for the 1960s and was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1981. COLLEGE BASKETBALL-NEWSKentucky’s Montgomery completes starters’ exit for NBA draftUNDATED (AP) — Kentucky forward EJ Montgomery will enter the NBA draft and forego his remaining collegiate eligibility. Montgomery’s decision completes an exodus of Wildcat starters to the pro ranks.The 6-foot-10 sophomore averaged career highs of 6.1 points and 5.4 rebounds per game with 31 blocks last season. Montgomery ranked second on the team in rebounding and blocks, and started 25 of 28 contests. He returned to school after going through the NBA draft evaluation process last spring.Montgomery follows pro announcements by fellow forward Nick Richards and guards Immanuel Quickley, Ashton Hagans and Tyrese Maxey. April 15, 2020 — Vance Jackson and Jalen Tate will join the Arkansas basketball program as graduate transfers. The 6-foot-9 Jackson started his college career by playing a season at Connecticut before playing two seasons at New Mexico. Last season, he averaged 11.1 points and 5.3 rebounds per game. The 6-foot-6 Tate played three seasons at Northern Kentucky. The guard was the 2020 Horizon League Defensive Player of the Year and MVP of the conference tournament. — Washington has added Wichita State transfer Erik Stevenson and junior college standout Nate Pryor. Stevenson played two years for the Shockers before leaving the program and returning to Washington, his home state. The 6-foot-3 guard averaged 11.1 points per game last season for Wichita State. Pryor is a Seattle native who spent the past two years at North Idaho College, where the team was a combined 59-3 during his two seasons. Pryor averaged 16.8 points and 4.1 assistant per game last season for North Idaho. PGA-BYRON NELSON-NEW COURSEByron Nelson going to ranch for new home on PGA Tour in ’21McKINNEY, Texas (AP) — The Byron Nelson will have a new home when the tournament returns to the PGA Tour schedule next year. TPC Craig Ranch, about 30 minutes north of downtown Dallas, will host the Nelson for at least five years, starting in 2021. Associated Press In other college basketball news:— Washington swingman Jaden McDaniels has declared for the NBA draft. He is the latest one-and-done player for the Huskies and is projected as a middle first-round pick after an inconsistent season. At times he was the best player on the court with raw skills that have NBA scouts excited about his potential on the wing. At other times, McDaniels showed a lack of maturity and flaws in his game. McDaniels averaged 13 points and 5.8 rebounds.— Louisville has added graduate transfer guards Carlik Jones and Charles Minlend Jr. to the men’s basketball roster. The 6-foot-1, 180-pound Jones was a three-year starter named Big South Conference player of the year after helping Radford win its second consecutive regular season championship. The Cincinnati native averaged 20 points, 5.5 assists, 5.1 rebounds and 1.4 steals per game as a junior and ranked 28th nationally in scoring. Minlend, 6-4 and 208 pounds, averaged 14.5 and points and 4.7 rebounds to lead San Francisco to 22 wins, matching its highest win total in 35 years.— The Tennessee Volunteers have added forward E.J. Anosike as a graduate transfer, bringing an experienced player into their already highly ranked recruiting class. The 6-foot-6, 245-pound forward from East Orange, New Jersey, graduates from Sacred Heart in May. He will enroll at Tennessee this summer after ranking sixth nationally in rebounding, averaging 11.6 per game. He also led his team in scoring at 15.7 points and and has 27 career double-doubles.— Minnesota has added two accomplished frontcourt players to its roster. The Gophers are bringing in Liam Robbins from Drake and Brandon Johnson from Western Michigan. The 7-foot Robbins has applied for immediate eligibility. He’ll have two seasons left. The 6-foot-8 Johnson is a graduate transfer who’ll be eligible immediately for his senior season. He was on the All-Mid-American Conference third team. — WWE has started releasing professional wrestlers in budget cuts related to the coronavirus pandemic. The moves came after pro wrestling was deemed “essential” in an order by Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis. The order from DeSantis allows WWE to put on shows without fans in the Orlando area. WWE announced Wednesday it made various moves to cut costs and improve cash flow. Several top stars under contract were let go, including wrestlers known professionally as Karl Anderson and Luke Gallows.— Major League Eating is launching a bracket-style elimination tournament starting Friday that will air on MLE’s YouTube channel and benefit America’s hungry. Contestants, which include Joey Chestnut and Miki Sudo, the top-ranked men’s and women’s eaters in the world, will face off via video from their homes in four rounds. The qualifying round is consuming two pounds of sliced bologna, followed by the quarterfinals, one family pack of Oreo cookies and a half-gallon of milk. The semifinals involve 10 pounds of baked beans and the finals will be 10 individual ramen noodle cups. Feeding America, which has a COVID-19 response fund, will receive $10,000.,Tampa Bay Lightning advance to face Dallas Stars in Stanley Cup finals, beating New York Islanders 2-1 in OT in Game 6 — The parent company that oversees the NHL Buffalo Sabres has announced a series of cost-cutting measures, including layoffs and furloughs affecting 125 employees. Pegula (peh-GOO’-luh) Sports and Entertainment says 104 employees are being furloughed. Another 21 were laid off yesterday, according to a person who spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity. PSE also said more than 36 employees, including management, hockey staff and broadcasters, will have their salaries reduced temporarily. PSE says it will continue to pay health insurance coverage for furloughed employees.— The Chicago Blackhawks have canceled their fan convention that was scheduled for July 24-26 at the Hilton Chicago. The team says refunds for convention passes and hotel rooms will be processed automatically.— Speedway Motorsports, owner and operator of eight tracks that host NASCAR’s top Cup Series, has laid off 180 employees and furloughed 100 as part of a company restructuring during the sports shutdown. Speedway Motorsports owns the Atlanta, Bristol, Charlotte, Kentucky, Las Vegas, New Hampshire, Sonoma and Texas tracks. The coronavirus pandemic caused NASCAR to suspend the season just four events into a 36-race schedule. To date, Speedway Motorsports has had its races at Atlanta, Texas and Bristol postponed. Both NASCAR and Speedway Motorsports are hoping to restart the season May 24 with the Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway.— ESPN is asking some of its on-air personalities to take a 15% pay cut over the next three months because of the coronavirus pandemic. The network says the voluntary pay cuts would apply to ESPN’s highest-paid broadcasters. They are designed to help deter further immediate furloughs that would affect network employees who might be more financially vulnerable. ESPN has already furloughed those who work on live events.— The commissioners of the major college football conferences have told Vice President Mike Pence college sports cannot return from the coronavirus shutdown until campuses have reopened. Ten commissioners and the athletic director of Notre Dame comprise the College Football Playoff management committee. Major sporting events have been called off and colleges have moved classes online.
Amid an ongoing NCAA investigation, player departures to the NBA and academic eligibility issues, the USC men’s basketball program appears to be in transition.For first-year coach Kevin O’Neill, the task of turning a program marred by recent controversy into an upper-echelon competitor in the Pac-10 may be an extremely tough challenge. But for a team looking for an identity and a leader to guide it toward a successful campaign, the one person the Trojans may rely on most is the one member of their team who has yet to suit up for a game: redshirt junior forward Alex Stepheson.Back at home · After spending his first season with North Carolina, Alex Stepheson joined the Trojans last season. The former Harvard-Westlake star is ready for his chance to play in front of his hometown crowd. – Courtesy of UNC Athletic Communications Stepheson, a former standout at nearby Harvard-Westlake High School, transferred from the University of North Carolina before the beginning of last season and was hoping to be a key contributor for USC last year. Just days into the season, however, the NCAA rejected his appeal to be granted immediate eligibility, and, for the first time in his basketball career, Stepheson was forced to watch from the sidelines.“Everyone was having fun together and winning as a team, and to not be part of that was a difficult experience,” Stepheson said.As USC staged its miraculous run to the NCAA Tournament last March, the 6-foot-9, 235-pound forward who had been a part of the Tar Heels Final Four team the previous year was left to play the role of cheerleader.For a player who had been lauded out of high school for his work ethic and love of the game, Stepheson did not waste his yearlong break from competition and instead spent the time improving.Stepheson, known primarily as a “defensive-minded” player, spent the majority of the last season working on another dimension of his game: his offense.“The year off gave me time to work on my post-up moves, 15-foot jump shots and free-throw shooting,” he said.And while the local high school product admits the defensive-minded label at times can be bothersome, he is excited for this year and the chance to prove to scouts and fans alike that he is a complete player.On paper, the program may have a tough road ahead, but Stepheson is confident that the Trojans will surprise a lot of people around the country this season.“This year is an exciting chance for us as a team,” Stepheson said. “It is an opportunity to prove to a lot of people we have what it takes to be successful.”Going into this year, the Trojans will not resemble the ’08-’09 team which captured the Pac-10 Tournament Championship for the first time in the program’s history. Star center Taj Gibson and freshman phenom DeMar DeRozan left school early with dreams of the NBA. Both were taken within the first 26 picks of the 2009 NBA Draft. Starting point guard Daniel Hackett went back to his home country of Italy to play for Benetton Treviso of the Euroleague. And, in the bombshell of the summer, Tim Floyd — the only coach to lead the Trojans to three straight tournament appearances — signed his letter of resignation, leaving the program in shambles and an inexperienced team to pick up the pieces.The team will be hard-pressed to repeat the level of achievement that has been regular the past few seasons, but Stepheson believes that O’Neill is more than an admirable replacement for the departed Floyd.For the pessimists around campus and the college basketball community at large, Stepheson has an exciting message.“You will see us run more, get out in more fast breaks and hopefully score more points,” he said.While he has been praised as a tenacious defender who has the ability to change games with his shot-blocking abilities and strength on the boards, Stepheson’s greatest asset to the team might be his ability to lead. After the departure of Gibson, a former Pac-10 Defensive Player of the Year and team co-captain, Stepheson realizes that this year the team will depend on his vocal presence as much as his on-court contribution.“I will do what it takes for us to win this year,” he said. “The team will definitely miss Taj’s passion for the game and constant hustle, but I hope to come in and instill a winning mentality and sense of toughness that is necessary to win at this level night in and night out.”The new post presence for the Trojans is well aware of the line of successful big men to play at USC, from Sam Clancy to Brian Scalabrine to Gibson. But for an athlete who was told he couldn’t even compete last year, Stepheson isn’t too concerned about what his legacy will be when his days at USC conclude.“It would be nice to be considered with the good post players who have come through this program, but this year is about working hard and making the most of the opportunity,” he said.So as the team gears up for its home opener against UC Riverside Nov. 17, the big man who left a powerhouse program in search of a chance to play in front of his hometown fans will relish his homecoming, even if it is more than a year in the making.On the surface the program may look like it’s on the rebound, left to carry the burden of past mistakes and key departures, but look closer and you will find a budding star and a leader ready to carry the torch.Alex Stepheson may not be a name you identify with yet. But if USC is able to make it to an historic fourth straight NCAA Tournament and rise above the negativity and cynicism that surrounds the team heading into this season, he will surely be a key reason.
A Corentyne, Berbice fisherman died on Friday after a boat collision at sea.Dead is Rudra Persaud, 51, of Number 77 Housing Scheme, Corentyne, Berbice.Reports are Persaud was the captain of the vessel Rosanna 1. The incident reportedly took place in the Atlantic Ocean at a place called “Long Pole” in Surinamese waters.This newspaper was told that the incident occurred just around midnight. Reports are the crew of five was awakened by a loud crashing sound on their boat. According to information, another vessel was in the water but Rosanna 1 began to sink. The men then cut their seine and started the engine, hoping to make it to shore but the boat continued to take in water. The others in the boat were Premdat Sohan of Number 55 Village, who is currently hospitalised with a broken rib and burns from gasoline, which had spilt on him; Sukhpaul Kaiso, 26, of Number 77 Housing Scheme; Ravindra Persaud, 23 (son of the dead man), and Shazad Ally, 17. Kaiso told this publication that they tried to use the ice box to float to no avail.“We nah see nothing but the boat was leaking and within three minutes, the boat gone down. We hold on the icebox and float on it for hours until 03:00 this morning (Friday) then we get rescue,” the man said.According to the father of one, Persaud told them that he was not going to make it. “When we already near fuh reach the boat he make two blow and that was it. Is the cramp and he does suffer from high pressure and was heavy rain…” The rescue boat, he said, pulled up the front half of a wooden speed boat in its seine.Meanwhile, the dead man’s wife referred to him as a very kind person who always took care of the family. The fishermen were expected back in Guyana on Saturday.Persaud leaves to mourn his wife and two children. (Andrew Carmichael)