Ooobie on Everything

Trump Sucks Up to Mad Man McCain

Let me open with this announcement: I don’t believe that Assad (much less Russia) carried out a chemical weapons (cw) attack in Syria. This was an act of provocation, with or without US involvement, that was carefully calculated to draw the response it did. I believe that this action was based on a judgment that Trump was a foreign affairs neophyte whom his domestic and other foes could push to a rash and poorly considered action to prove his boasts of toughness and his leadership. Faced with an endless and ugly barrage of fake news and false accusations, he fell for whatever he was being sold and grabbed the chance to assert himself as president.

This latest US violation of international law happened only days after the announcement by Trump’s highest reps that unseating Assad was not our primary goal in Syria. We wanted only to defeat ISIS and the jihadists. I thought, sanity prevails. But John McCain was beside himself, or outside himself, or wherever people beyond all utility hang out. I’ve heard he flew to Syria to consult with his tiny proxy army. If so, who knows what wise advice this old white guy gave to those “rebels” living in a complex of tunnels in the side of a mountain. All we know is soon afterwards, an attack by the Syrian Air Force occurred at the same time chemical weapons were released on the ground. (The US insists it was aerial release, but as former Ambassador to Syria Peter Ford said, “[there is] “no proof that the cause of the explosion was what they said it was” and that for Assad such an attack would be “totally self-defeating.”

Here’s what I do believe: Trump, tough guy in business, doesn’t have the political judgement of gravel outside of an appeal to the voters. He should have hung tight and continued to reject the Russian Fairy Tale in which the Witch, Vladimir Putin, gets the innocents (DNC and Clinton Campaign) into his ovens and then serves up Trump; he should have fought those who think the Russian Bogeyman can cover up the crimes of our political class. Instead we have had the recusal of Sessions (innocent of any crime or misbehavior whatsoever and with no earthly interest in helping Russia); the recusal of Nunes who revealed the heinous surveillance by Obama of political opponents; the removal of Bannon from the NSC; and the promise to work with the Dems to get some piece of crap supposedly better than the current piece of crap called Obamacare. Trump obviously isn’t getting politics. And frankly, I’m not getting him, either.

And now this incredible blunder and horrible crime. A nation not at war with the US, not even posing a threat to the US, is once again being assaulted by the United States. Why? I’ll venture this. Because Trump is getting all shook up over the assault he is being subjected to by our own Commies. He can’t fight internal enemies and external enemies, too, and external is easier. Obama promised to honor an idiotic red line, so Trump will make good on the promise. Precisely as his political enemies calculated. And now he gets his reward, in Pavlovian style, which is CNN opining that he’s finally president. All it took was the start of WWIII.

Trump would never erect a building without all the facts about the job. So how could it be that he committed an act of war on the basis of an unproven claim of responsibility? How could he fall for such a ruse by the enemy? If we end up at war with Russia, and China and Iran, will anybody remember it was the Democrats pushing him there?

But hold on. Let’s take a closer look and offer information on Syria from other sources that the USG will not give you.

“Russia’s defence ministry has argued that Syrian planes were destroying chemical weapons, not deploying them, and said the airstrikes targeted a rebel storage depot for toxins.”

Absurd, say the Americans.

“Khan Sheikhoun, where the attack happened was a hewn mountain with tunnels and impenetrable bunkers. Definitely a major hiding place for manufacturing weapon supplies for the Islamist rebels on a major scale. It is a “warehouse used to both produce and store shells containing toxic gas” as Russian Defense Ministry spokesman Major-General Igor Konashenkov said.”

Why aren’t the western media showing the photos that make clear this attack was on a military target, not a simple village living peacefully? And why is nobody looking at the opposition? Here is what UN rep Carla del Ponte said in 2013 about the results of the UN investigation into the use of cw in specific attacks in Syria:

Ms Del Ponte, a former Swiss attorney-general and prosecutor with the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY), did not rule out the possibility that troops loyal to President Bashar al-Assad might also have used chemical weapons, but said further investigation was needed. “I was a little bit stupefied by the first indications we got… they were about the use of nerve gas by the opposition,” she said.

Ms. del Ponte’s seasoned judgment was spurned by “most western governments” who insisted it was all the work of the Assad government. The final report laid all the attacks at the government’s doorstep by insinuation without actually having the evidence to do so, as it admitted.

Today’s America seems to be hurtling toward some apocalyptic scenario of war abroad and at home. So far I lack any confidence that Trump will hold the line on his campaign promises for a new American foreign policy. So far it looks like he is so desperate to be loved that he plays the eager sap for the warmongers and the military-industrial complex. So far, I’m concerned he is going to take us to the brink of a massive conflict. Russia now and urgently is going to seriously beef up Syrian air defense systems with Russia’s latest hardware and technology, so the next time a jet flies over a Syrian airbase they will probably come down in flames. Then what will happen?

Stop the World, I Really Would Like to Get Off

In my  last piece I said that ISIS was operating where the Russian jet came down in Syria. Actually it was a whole assortment of jihadists and revolutionary thugs, some affiliated with ISIS and some fielded by Turkey, and others perhaps financed by the USG. Who knows? All I know is that the Russian media showed a video clip of the motley crew of murderers looting the body and shouting “Allahu Akbar!” (Didn’t see that clip on any  US stations.) I suppose there might be some people who can draw a line between these creeps and ISIS, but I am not one of them and nobody at the receiving end of their brutality would be, either.

But now I’ve just heard Obama continue building his legacy as a world-class buffoon and jackass. In his speech on how climate change is going to part the seas and solve the Syrian conflict, he drew a picture of a poor isolated benighted Russia fighting to prop up a man, Assad, whom the whole world wants to see gone because he is a brutal man; and urging Putin to come around to common sense and give up his support of Assad (surrender or else!) and start trying to defeat ISIS beside the US and all its one million nation allies. I almost choked.

The US has been creating havoc in Syria for almost four years, after having decided that Assad was not amenable enough to US control and direction, being friends of the Arch Enemy Russia and the other (sort of) Arch Enemy Iran. We are responsible for many, many thousands of deaths and destruction beyond belief across the Middle East. Our presence fed ISIS and it grew and grew and grew, and we putzed around, with a gazillion weapons passing into ISIS hands straight from the US, or rather via Turkey, who is pals with a whole slew of mercenary groups with radical ideologies, the hand-maidens of ISIS, and who is trying chiefly to take down Assad and the Kurds who are fighting ISIS.

That is how the US was fighting ISIS for four years.

And it was only when ISIS had advanced so far that it was threatening to take the country, and in the obvious vacuum of intelligent mission direction from the US, that Russia jumped into the fray. An ISIS victory in Syria and then Iraq was an unacceptable scenario. Such a development would significantly heighten the threat to Russia with its Moslem populations, and to Europe. Further, Europe was under invasion with the efflux from Syria, no big surprise considering the scorched earth policy being pursued in that country. It went in a la Russe — wholeheartedly and without reserve. Russia supported the Syrian Army in its fight against opponents armed and trained and funded by the US, and against ISIS wherever it was. Russia was making a huge difference and the Europeans wanted the US to do likewise. The US looked like a sad, pitiful remnant of a once-great country.

The Russians have declared themselves open to an alliance, but that they will not support the overthrow of Assad and the imposition of a government on Syria. This in US eyes is a capital crime: not doing as told. So despite indications from France and Germany that they could live with Assad for a transitional period, the US won’t budge. And now begins the big propaganda push to turn things around. According to Obama in his latest pronouncements from on high, the US is powerful and decisive, has all the answers, and all the friends and all the money. Russia is strictly JV. Russia must stop being stubborn and just join everybody else in doing as told. No deviation from the US position is allowable. Until then, the US president suggested, we will fight in Syria separately.

This arrogant presentation by our Clown President has sealed the deal. Putin will never give on Assad now, and will commit Russian forces fully to defend the Assad government and Russia’s vital security interests. That means there will be no second Turkish shoot-down that goes without a military response. This means that any of those nations flying jet aircraft may cross paths with a Russian jet and there you are, Bob’s your uncle, I told you so. This will happen even if there is coordination at the strictly field level. There will be a military collision unless an alliance is agreed that satisfies the chief goal of defeating ISIS and permits a sane and focused approach to the task.

I urge you to listen to The Idiot’s speech and judge for yourself: knowing what  you know, is this man insane? Is our country too? We have to stop this madness. If we want to be in Syria where we  now act in violation of international law, no matter how we make it appear, we should accommodate Russia’s entirely reasonable position concerning Assad’s status. He will head an interim government and then there will be elections and if they want him, he will still be president. If they don’t, he will go. Syrians will decide, not the US or anybody else. Is that less than we would want for ourselves?




Hill’s Shills

clintoniraqI haven’t written for some time now. I’ve been mesmerized by the wreckage of our foreign policy ineptitude, in which, as we all know, Hillary Clinton played a huge role as Secretary of State. She was Joan of Arc for the export of US democracy around the world, the beacon of liberty. It was in this spirit that she pushed hard for a war against Qaddafi (although we never call things like bombing war anymore) and then publicly gloated when the man was shot on his knees as well as reportedly sodomized with a weapon. This is the woman who would be President. It isn’t a pretty picture.

pickeringtwo_editedI guess we all have become used by now to the spectacle of career US officials such as Ambassador Thomas Pickering running interference for Hillary Clinton. In case you forgot, Pickering was in charge of the Accountability Review Panel that scoured the events of Benghazi in order to assign blame for the disaster. Alas, he wasn’t really able to pin that down very well, and he sure wasn’t able to find any link at all to the Big Gun at State, Mrs. Clinton. In fact, Pickering was convinced a priori of Mrs. Clinton’s non-responsibility, to the extent that he didn’t bother to chat with the lovely lady about her role in things. Some of us wonder how stupid he thinks the rest of us are, and believe me, State is filled with people who think they are smarter than almost anybody but a European. Pickering didn’t think it was necessary to inquire too deeply into her own actions that led up to this and her actions on the night of the disaster. Did she do anything other than sit on her ample ass and listen and watch to what was happening? Did what she had seen not seem at odds with her public statements that this was linked to that stupid (but convenient) video snippet that supposedly triggered spontaneous rioting? Mr. Pickering is one of those who is dreaming of being Mr. Secretary of State if dear Hill is elected. She owes him BIG TIME for that one. The man threw away all his credibility by trying to cover up Mrs. Clinton’s responsibility for what happened in Benghazi, and I’m afraid he is going to be disappointed at not being Secretary of State.

Let’s move on to another US Ambassador, a career official, Ambassador Christopher Hill. He has just published an article in Politico, the TASS of the Clinton campaign, in which he blames Obama for the debacle in the Middle East. The lead photo he used alerted me to what was up. It was a picture of a beaming Hillary Clinton with the  Ambassador at her side by the aircraft that had delivered her to Iraq like manna from heaven. His first paragraph was enough for me. It started by recounting how Clinton went to Iraq and how the Iraqis loved her, were in raptures with her, she immediately bonded with every single human being in the room. I guess Amb. Hill thought the world under Hillary’s guidance would be sunshine and roses, warring factions would kiss and make up and then BOOM. Here, let the Ambassador tell you for himself: Exhilarated and grateful, I stood on the edge of the landing zone in a line with a few other embassy personnel, all of us waving farewell to our secretary with the expectation she would be back soon. Obama replaced her in that position with (gasp) the Vice President. Well, I guess Hill shares the common view of Biden as a blundering blithering idiot, but his insinuation is that, if only it had been Hillary, everything would have worked out just fine.

Yes, she might have begun by disarming the US Embassy security force, Amb. Hill.

090315_chrishill_kady_editedHill is another fawning candidate for Secretary of State or perhaps the number two spot. His maneuver with this article was transparently an attempt to distance the miraculous Hillary Clinton from the disastrous decision-making in foreign policy while she was Secretary of State by pinning it on Obama and the White House advisors. This is the “if only” school of campaigning — if only Hillary had been president, none of this would have happened. She is tougher than ISIS and Assad put together. If you think NATO was prone to bombing under Obama, you ain’t seen nothin’ yet. By the way, the cavalcade of stars coming out of State Department is no surprise. She had it under her control for four years, during which she wasted no time recruiting for her campaign machine. An acquaintance from State, a currently serving Ambassador, told my husband she is working for the Hillary campaign. For quite a while we got phone calls under her name, but they were obviously robo-calls (never a message left). Expect this team to be dedicated to whitewashing Hillary Clinton’s lusterless tenure as SecState. (And by the way, what happened to the Hatch Act that prohibited USG employees from active support of political candidates?)

panetta_editedNow we have Leon Panetta. If wimpy guys like Hill don’t convince you that Hillary Clinton is a Strong Leader, here’s the guy who was Secretary of Defense. And what do you think his message is? That Obama is such a stinker, he screwed up everything! Alone! Panetta was much smarter than Obama and disagreed with almost everything Obama was in favor of. He did not say in so many words that “my friend Hillary would be much stronger as President than Obama ever was or will be,” but we get it Leon. He’s another Clinton I lapdog, and he remains true to his brand. Expect more of the same from him in coming months.  Leon’s getting on in years so perhaps he doesn’t want a government spot, but perhaps just a lucrative government-connected boondoggle.

Get used to it. Hillary’s bandwagon was lined up long ago, and she poached within the USG to find her team. It is just one more example of how the USG has become aligned with one party and in doing so has politicized the civil service function. This deserves defeating.



Is Anybody Scared Yet?

chrysalisI feel as if we have all been sucked into some kind of time warp where events are occurring in triple time everywhere. We’re heading for some kind of big bang, again, I’m more and more convinced. I can feel it twanging in the air. If I were a cowgirl with my ear to the ground, I would say the Indians are coming, a lot of Indians. As I commented to a fellow blogger familiar with the ugly face of socialism at a personal level, what this feels like isn’t any old ordinary evil we know or knew, but something distilled and pure. Seriously, if Obama were to appear at his next faux  press conference with horns and cloven hoofs, I wouldn’t be at all surprised. He’s playing a massive role in what is coming in America and abroad. He’s definitely Satan’s little helper.

The latest insult to everybody still sane in America is the story being peddled about Benghazi. Now the prevaricators are getting far more sophisticated than they have been to date. They have morphed from it was the video, to it was terrorism, didn’t we say so? to it was the video, but it was also terrorism! Now we are told it was the SECOND attack, the one that ended up with a dead Ambassador, that was “professional” and “well-organized.” And guess what sent them to the annex to maraud and murder? It was that first spontaneous bunch of dunderheads who like, totally amateurs. They haven’t claimed as yet that the amateurs were provoked by the video, but I can see it coming. So we are back to lying to save the fat butts of people like Hillary and Barack.

I admit it. I didn’t think we would ever see the day when our military officers would sit and spin a load of crap to clear the good name of their political patrons. But a friend of mind predicted it when the “kingpin” (oops, low-level drudge) who was in on the marauding was nabbed by US agents. I say nabbed, but of course this guy all but came forward with wrists together. He was walking around giving tv interviews, but it was not until a huge stink was made about the fact of his non-arrest that he was amazingly found. But the guy and his handlers disappeared from view for a while before showing up on US shores. Of course he was in CIA hands. The CIA, last I looked, had become about as politicized as the FBI.  And now it is gradually emerging from the words of this low-level drudge that nobody in either the White House or the State Department lied about what was happening in Benghazi. Nobody made any mistakes. It was all set in  motion by something as unpredictable as a video snippet by a disturbed man.

monsterThis bit of theater in lieu of transparency is added of course to the VA scandal — talk about cold, indifferent and utterly worthless civil “servants” (and I’m pretty sure that the servant part will soon be a thing of the past as somehow demeaning to black USG employees). And then we have the Mother of All Scandals, the IRS conspiracy. What is happening is a very rapid push (don’t you sense the panic?) to make as many difficult to reverse gains in politicizing the USG before Obama is a thing of the past. This process  will continue if Hillary Clinton is elected. Our government has grown into a monster that has a life of its own. It can’t be killed.

Here’s another insight: the “army”  Obama has often spoken of creating to enforce his ideas is actually this army of South American Indians who think nothing of selling their vote — old hat for them — and are loyal for the millennia to whoever takes care of them. Being taken care of was once novel for these Latin Americans, but now that is old hat, too. I’d bet every one of the guys who mows my lawn has his hand in every open pot. But here’s a prediction and it isn’t original, but an echo of one made years ago by a Secretary of Labor (a Republican at the time): there will be racial warfare between the Hispanics and the Blacks over jobs and benefits. There most assuredly will be.

Because of course the US isn’t growing at a healthy pace, despite all the happy talk. We are morphing rapidly into a nation of consumers who don’t produce anything of value. Our economy can be controlled by guys like George Soros and Warren Buffett and Bill Gates. And these are guys who aren’t happy just being super rich — they want super power, too, and they want to remake the entire world in terms of their “visionary” philosophies that come with a heavy dose of “shut up and take it, it’s good for you.” The stock market boom is a fiction, as well. Wait until it crashes again, folks. The billionaires will earn more billions, all taken from y-o-u, the world’s drones.

And abroad, things are a real mess. On Syria, the US has turned a blind eye to Syrian bombing of Iraq, because the bombing aims to eradicate the rebels fighting both Assad and the Iraqi government. But we are also arming the guys trying to bring Assad down. And all of this has become urgent because Obama screwed up royally — or claimed a great victory for his personal vision — in Iraq. And we got rid of Assad’s chemical weapons, but it seems that we failed to claim the cw that is in the hands of the US-supported anti-Assad mob, or so it seems from the discovery of empty sarin containers left behind by the ISIS crowd in Syria or Iraq or some such hell-hole.

We also have the irony of the US telling Russia not to violate Ukraine’s border while refusing to enforce the US border in line with their secret “Open Borders” policy. And our border has indeed disappeared under the weight of a deliberate offensive against US sovereignty from our south. At last the US is experiencing both “waves of refugees” (fleeing their contemptibly corrupt and brutal governments, violence and no work or benefits) and “separatism.” (The separatists already march with Mexican flags in hand.) And the worst of it is that I am absolutely convinced that the orchestrated influx of kids and assorted others was connived in by the Democrat Party and the jerk in the White House. I think they know that just doing it and not worrying about the legality is the best way to force on America that “permanent majority” we should all dread.

So this is the kind of nightmare world we became after leaving the blessed chrysalis of the US was up until the late 60s. Instead of going from ugly caterpillar to beautiful butterfly, we’re moving in reverse.





Moral Imperatives

chkThe US hawks have been released from their tethers. The likes of John McCain are pushing hard for a much deeper US military commitment to the riff-raff and terrorists opposing Assad in Syria — including the dispatch of military advisors and heavier arms. The US president is considering the request. Was one Iraq not enough? I guess not. The hawks want a whole team of people over there directing the effort to unseat an elected government. They insist that a government elected in the midst of civil strife, as Assad will be in June, cannot be a truly legitimate government. The US has a moral imperative to intervene to impose a government there (and depose one, as well) to balance out the scales of justice .

This contrasts to our position in Ukraine, where we backed a putsch-installed regime that forced an elected president to flee and then declared the putsch-installed regime legitimate. When pro-Russians in eastern Ukraine began resisting the Kiev authorities the US immediately condemned Russia for alleged military aid to those fighting . Now the West asserts the legitimacy of the new president who was elected in the midst of civil strife and without participation of the eastern part of the country.  The US has a moral imperative to help Kiev, so they say. These two cases alone highlight how utterly flexible US policy is and how the rationale used in one case to US advantage can be flipped somewhere else, also to answer US interests.

vietnameWe are currently in a pissing match with China over what the US says is bullying behavior in the South China Sea. China recently got into a row with Vietnam over fishing rights (and Chinese oil rigs) and China sank a Vietnamese fishing boat. Japan and China are now poised for a fight, backs arched and hissing, over who owns a handful of rocky islands. Japan’s legal claim is said to be stronger than that of China. But many Chinese think that doesn’t matter, what matters is who plants the flag.  A participant at the Davos economic forum wrote that many in China believe that China can accomplish its goals — smacking down Japan, demonstrating its military superiority in the region, and establishing full control over the symbolic islands — with a surgical invasion. That sounds an awfully lot like what Russia just did, and in fact we have now moved from the stage where NATO overturned existing international law and set new precedents, to Russia and now China using those precedents to their own advantage and fine-tuning the precedents by adding new wrinkles.

The hard-liners pushing US policy demand a full-scale re-militarization of the former Warsaw Pact states (excluding Russia) that would involve deploying missile defenses and heavy equipment, and men, too. They want NATO to push ahead for the final NATO expansion that would put it belly-to-belly with the Bear. Russia is responding by re-militarizing itself, and moving to latest-generation weaponry as well as upgrading its nuclear arsenal.

benghaziA US troop carrier sits off the coast of Libya, waiting for what we do not know. Is it filled with the thousand Marines it can carry? They claim they are there to evacuate Americans if things go awry. What things? Do we know something is going to go wrong? Then why not evacuate now, before anybody dies? In any event, why do we have so many Americans there after what happened previously — is it the same illegal weapons dealing that was going on then? One thing is for sure, there is something afoot by one party or the other. I wonder if we are planning to help the inept and floundering government in Tripoli by going into and occupying Benghazi (in support of Libyan forces, of course).  It’s practically a US moral imperative to do so. And, coincidentally I’m sure, if the current US regime could only calm things down in Libya, even if only briefly, an image-spinner could maybe make it look like not such a disaster by the time Mrs. Clinton strides to accept the nomination of her stupidly adoring party. I’d guess that would be the rationale. If they don’t do anything in Libya, by the elections for the next president Mrs. Clinton will be pounded to dust over the massive failure of her chief foreign policy accomplishment (the murder of Qaddafi and the installation of a puppet regime).

We are currently using US resources to track down a large number of schoolgirls kidnapped by fanatics in Nigeria. Now we’re deploying to do the absolute duty of other governments, which is to protect their own people. It seems it’s a moral imperative. There and everywhere else.

hegemonWhen people talk about the “US hegemon,” this is what they have in mind. The US has put out so many tentacles into the world and is involved up to its neck in so many mutual defense agreements and intervenes in so many quarrels large and small that it is hard to escape the impression that what America wants is to control the globe and all its actors. What the US wants is one global sphere of influence, its own, which it calls no spheres of influence. It is an utterly futile fancy, of course. The move away from the “single superpower”  model is already well underway. All we do by injecting ourselves into every argument is to make more enemies  and stiffen the spines of those who will never let the US dictate to them. Russia and China have their own serious problems, but they can form a tactical or even strategic alliance that serves the purpose of bringing the US down to size.

The global power calculus is shifting. As the US loses its grip on things here and there, the perception spreads that the hegemon is not what it once was. It has been made vulnerable and weakened by its spread of commitments around the globe. The US is so weighed down and imperiled, it dare not trigger a major confrontation. So it talks tough to Russia and China, but stays its hand. The US can be challenged, and it can be challenged successfully as was already proven in Crimea. The US is not in a comfortable position these days. It’s the defending champion, but there are a lot of Mohammed Ali’s around.


Russia Annexes Crimea

CrimeaI just watched Vladimir Putin address the Russian Federal Assembly, including Duma and Federation Council deputies, regional governors and public figures. When Putin entered, the audience clapped wildly and then stood to their feet. Putin was nearly in tears and at first had trouble speaking. This was a historic moment. Russia was taking back what belonged to it and screw NATO. And that is the bottom line of what Putin said, bringing tears to the eyes of his audience and joy to their faces.

kosmpaKosovo indeed was a linchpin of Russia’s legal argument, which had several other legs, including protection of human rights, self-determination, and the right to defend ethnic Russians and Russian-speakers. Putin skewered NATO, pointing out that the Alliance went to war against Serbia without any UN authorization, in absolute violation of international law, on the grounds that there were a lot of human rights abuses and victims in Kosovo. Putin looked incredulous and said: if you can ignore international law on the basis of human rights, then Russia is on solid ground. It was deeply concerned about potential human rights violations, which thank God, he said, had not happened, and why, he asked, didn’t they? Because Russia acted swiftly to protect the Russians and pro-Russians in Crimea, who turned to Russia’s government with a request for help. You can be sure, he said, that if we hadn’t acted there would have been many human rights violations. Putin listed as evidence all the actions the illegal government in Kiev had taken against Russians, from threats to physical violence to cultural suppression. As for its military movements, Russia had not invaded Ukraine, though it could have. It did not kill anybody. It had done nothing beyond the limits of existing military and legal agreements regarding Crimea.

Furthermore, Crimea had not been consulted or given a voice when the territory was transferred from Russia to Ukraine under the Soviet regime. A historic injustice, Putin said, and  one worsened by the subsequent governments because “we” did not make a more urgent issue of the territorial delineation talks that the Ukrainians had obstructed from the beginning, refusing to allow clarification of the future for Crimea and other areas. Think about what would happen to us if NATO made Ukraine a member: the Russian fleet would be surrounded by NATO. Russia’s belly would be open to the enemy. This isn’t going to happen, he declared. The injustices had now been righted. For the first time ever, the Crimeans were given the chance to vote on their future and they voted overwhelmingly to join Russia. And now, he announced, Russia and Crimea were one. All the steps were being taken to integrate Crimea into the Federation. Putin said Russia absolutely guaranteed the Tatars their special rights, as fellows of the Crimean peninsula, including full rights to preserve their culture and religion and language as distinct from other nations. He declared Crimea to belong to Russians, Ukrainians and Tatars equally and declared all three languages to be official languages of the Crimean peninsula.

Putin cited Libya and Afghanistan and Iraq and Syria and Serbia as places where NATO and the US had set international precedents that today Russia is using to defend its own genuine vital interests, and the west rejects Russia’s and others’ right to do so. Why? he asked. Because it wasn’t in their interests to have Ukraine allied with Russia. Putin scoffed at NATO’s claim that Kosovo was a “special case” and not a precedent. He listed all the subsequent actions taken to give an international imprimatur to the actions taken by NATO in Serbia, including UN blessings for the independence of Kosovo. It was established law, now, he said: the UN had declared that (and he quoted) national law (Constitutions, e.g.) does not require a group asserting the right to secede to gain the approval of any central authorities nor can domestic law (Constitution) be cited as a reason to deny a people’s right to self-determination. Thus the assertion that Crimea had violated Ukrainian law by asserting its independence was simply wrong according to the UN itself.

natothreatI think there is a dawning recognition, at least in Europe, that Crimea’s majority did want to secede and join Russia and that Russia has been pushed by NATO as far as it will permit. It will not allow further threats from NATO, nor further encroachment on Russian borders. Putin himself stated flatly that Russia did not have any intention of invading any NATO countries, so that was a false issue. As for Ukraine, he did not directly say he wanted a neutral Ukraine, but only that Russia wants an undivided Ukraine that respects the equal rights of the Russians, the Ukrainians and the Tatars. He said Ukraine had changed government illegally, with the participation of far right elements who provoked the violence and the ousting of a legal government. Ukraine had to observe its own laws because to do otherwise risks destabilization of Ukraine due to its mixed population. He did make clear that Ukraine is a special zone for Russia, a land in which Russians were co-equal, that those sitting in Kiev are traitors to Ukraine and Russia, and that Ukraine is not going to fall to NATO. Other than that, Russia can deal with Ukraine’s normal relations with the west. He even said Russia doesn’t object to cooperation with NATO, but solely if such cooperation is non-military (such as disaster reaction). It doesn’t seek to subjugate Ukraine. But Ukraine will never be allowed to be a threat to Russia. (That earned another standing ovation.)

Putin’s address was a masterful use of national pride and national humiliation, feelings he obviously shared, to further Russian national interests. He admitted that there were those opposed to Russia’s position within Russia itself, but described such disagreement as normal and asserted forcefully that the vast majority of Russians stand with the government. There was little doubt about that judging from his audience’s reactions. I can only describe it as euphoria, and again I am reminded that the humiliation of nations, such as was indulged in at Versailles at Germany’s expense, only leads to future conflict. The ruined national pride must be recovered and the wrongs made right. Now Gorbachev himself, the man who made possible the collapse of the Soviet Union, has spoken in support of the annexation of Crimea as righting what was done wrongly. This is the moment when Russia’s sense of destiny and self-realization has fully awakened. There is no daylight on these fundamental issues of national survival between the Communist Party and those who ousted it. NATO has to recalculate the costs and benefits of further threats.

America Helping the World: Training North Africans in Asymmetric Warfare and Heavy Weapons

libyaHip-hip-hooray! Our military has let it be known that we are currently negotiating with the Libyan government, such as it is, to grant us the great honor of training Libyan commandos and the Libyan Army. America can do this because it is rolling in money and has repeatedly demonstrated sterling judgment about those to whom we hand over our fine and highly destructive weaponry. Even Admiral William McRaven, head of US Special Operations Command, has conceded straight off that there are some unsavory types among those we are going to train. I guess that is a sort of caveat emptor to Americans,  letting them know that another Bin Laden could result from our efforts, and if so, it isn’t his fault. Of course that’s his job, training other men in killing and sabotage, and I don’t doubt he’s doing it all for the glory of his country. And if he has to provide his services in a place that even he, apparently, views with a jaundiced eye, there is nothing to be done about it. America is running out of other countries whose armies we can equip and train, and for sure we have run out of reliable countries to equip and train, so Libya, Egypt, Tunisia — six of one, half a dozen of the other. They are all equally unstable and explosive, so if we are going to make future  trouble for ourselves, Libya is as good a place to start as anywhere else.

The fun just doesn’t stop under this New America with its New Military, and neither does the madness. The brutal murder of our people under the noses of the Libyan authorities as top US military leaders slapped down anybody who wanted to save them must have given  somebody the brilliant idea that we ought to train Libyans to kill more efficiently. Let’s face it — the Benghazi op was pretty sloppy. And I’m not talking about the blunders and excruciatingly poor judgment shown by Hillary Clinton and the self-indulgent mental midget she worked for, either. I’m talking about those Libyan fighting men who showed great spirit and joie de vivre on the rampage but who were rather disorganized and undisciplined in their assault. Had they been trained up militarily, properly, they could have killed even more of our people. There were a lot of things those marauders could have done much better and America is going to teach them how.

military trainingWe want to train 5-7000 commandos for Libya, I suppose on the assumption that these men will then stem the rise of Al Qaeda and its many affiliates in North Africa. Either that or they will join up with Al Qaeda, taking their weapons with them. Apparently the policy-makers (the same ones who brought you Obamacare, Fast and Furious, and Acorn as voter registrants) feel it is time for the US to spread out from the Middle East, where we have already bungled things royally, into all those violent countries large and small in Africa that are thirsting for US defense dollars. For some reason our brilliant strategists seem to believe that raising the American flag in those places and inserting a number of US military just sufficient to be totally vulnerable will frighten the jihadists away, rather than attracting them like ants to a picnic. I’d love to get a peek at our military plans for the region, just to see if we’re planning on doing similar good deeds in Sudan, Somalia or Chad, maybe in the president’s homeland in Kenya or even the Congo. The world is screaming for more American military involvement in their countries, I’m sure. I know Americans are pleading with our government to get us sucked down into some more Treasury-draining misadventures in the Moslem civil wars. Right? Aren’t you?

Tell me something. How come the Commander-in-Chief, the one intent on fundamentally transforming our armed forces, doesn’t dispatch all these restless military types to our very own southern border? I personally feel they could make a far greater contribution to America’s security if they would teach ranchers in the Southwest how to protect themselves, their families, and their property from the drug cartels and people-smugglers who have made our country’s borderlands their home away from home. How about sending the Army Corps of Engineers to Arizona to build sniper outposts and man them with snipers?  How about a giant ditch filled with water and alligators and a drawbridge? But no. The Commander-in- Chief, if he uses our military on the southern border at all, will use them to facilitate the crossing of millions of tiny broad-backed aliens who will need care and refreshment after their grueling journeys. Perhaps he could set up military training for these newcomers so they can support the president when he finally moves to shut down his political opposition and open up the borders completely. But using the military to keep our borders secure? Hah. Fat chance. The only purpose our military serves anymore is to make sure a certain quota of patriotic young men and women are mutilated and killed in feckless military adventures that have anything but victory as their goal in places of marginal or no importance to the United States.

Using one’s military forces in other people’s countries has traditionally been a favored means of keeping high-testosterone males busy elsewhere, particularly in times of high unemployment. The last thing a Commander-in-Chief wants is a lot of angry well-trained military men sitting around thinking about what a mess their country is and what they can do to address the situation. Obama certainly doesn’t want that; he already has enough problems with retired or ousted military brass who are speaking openly about the president’s assault on America’s armed forces right here at home. Here’s my guess: we are pulling out of Afghanistan and we’re well out of Iraq, but our men aren’t going to come home for a well-earned rest. I’d bet they are going to be kept busy fighting other people’s wars so they don’t try to start one at home.


Olio, Pastiche, Potpourri, Inter Alia and Etcetera

hodgepodgeI can hardly read the news or watch the talking heads on television these days, it’s all so depressing. How about those Democrat members of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee who walked out just before the families of those who died in Benghazi had their say — what was that all about? Not a pretty picture, Dems, looks to me like you are callous and indifferent. But hey, I know those terms can only be applied to Republicans. And while I’m on that point, I want to give nod to the Republican members who were too busy with other business to be there for the hearing. Just imagine a picture of one side of the room packed and the other side empty. What a dramatic statement. But no. What we saw was a room with one side empty and the other side nearly empty. Never say the Republicans won’t let a good crisis go to waste. They can hardly decry the Dems’ open expression of contempt because the response would be: and where were you?

empty houseI personally would have tied every one of the Committee members and their staffers into their chairs, along with Hillary Clinton and her shills Thomas Pickering and Victoria Nuland. They should be forced to listen to the families’ words of accusation. But we don’t do things like tying US officials and elected members of Congress into chairs, electric or otherwise, and we don’t force them to take responsibility for their egregious stupidity, arrogance and irresponsibility. Too bad. More and more I find myself talking out loud to the blowhards of Congress when I watch them grill people giving testimony. These servants of the people drip contempt at the very suggestion that our leaders are not as virtuous as they believe themselves to be, or that they are nincompoops and incompetents. I keep rooting for the guy in the hot-seat, urging him to say it: you work for us, lunkhead, not the other way around — how about you answer some questions?

alshababMeanwhile, in our president’s homeland (that would be Kenya) al-Shabab took over an upscale shopping mall and summarily executed dozens of people who gave the wrong answer to the question: are you a Moslem? It was a case of “say the secret word (‘no’) and get a bullet through the brain.” Although the gang’s handle sounds like a 50s rock and roll lyric, al-Shabab is pure evil. Still, they are fighting for their ideals, whatever they might be, and this terrible loss of life should be the point where the US takes the Kenyan government to task for brutally murdering some of the Shopping Mall Shababists without a trial. What a terrible human rights violation. Maybe we should start arming the Shababists and rename them “Freedom Fighters.” Perhaps they could send John McCain a letter, with a cc to Lindsay Graham. Never mind — we will probably still get a chance to arm them when they migrate to the jihad currently underway in Syria.

angry oOur glorious president, who according to rumor was the stuttering voice of Porky Pig in the Loony Tunes, has once more taken to the pulpit in the Church of Racial Division. You always know when he’s trying to stir up racial hatred because his eyes narrow and his voice takes on a faux black cadence and he practically trembles with indignation. Method Acting, it’s called. Having been shown to be the bumbling idiot he is on the world stage, Obama has decided to ignore international relations altogether for a while and instead concentrate on turning his adoring black mobs against the Party of White Folks, also known as the Party of Old White Folks, or sometimes the Party of Old White Folks Using Up Too Much Health Care and Hanging Onto Too Much Money that Belongs to Us. Obama’s short-hand for all those is “Republicans.” The guy who once thought that constantly raising the debt limit was a criminal undertaking today has made it clear he doesn’t plan to negotiate with those people over his unfettered right to raise the debt ceiling. And he also made clear that he doesn’t plan to tolerate those people “messing” with him. Ooooh. He’s miffed, America. He might have to encourage some more black on white hate crimes, a few more strategic murders to remind Whitey who is in charge these days. And of course he is even more miffed because the House of Representatives, egged on by the evil Constitutionalists, is doing whatever possible to keep the health-care debacle from getting taxpayer funding. He larded his most recent speech with code words like “overcome” to get the crowd thinking of a real heroic figure, whom we are to assume he is channeling. I guess when you are an empty suit with no substance of your own you can channel anybody. I wish he could channel Martin Luther King; then he might stop thinking in racial stereotypes.

angry parentThen we have the march of tyranny that is going on in our schools and on our campuses. Did you see the news about a father who was forcefully removed from a public meeting when he objected to Baltimore’s use of the Common Core educational monstrosity? It seems that he was disrupting the meeting by making comments and asking questions, when the rules were to submit written questions and be silent. (Isn’t that a violation of the rights of the disabled? How is a blind person supposed to submit a written question?) This procedure reminds me of the Soviet Union, when phony “public meetings” required all questions to arrive in advance in writing so that all the inconvenient ones could be shredded. All I can say is, the cop who frog-marched the concerned parent off the premises was lucky the guy wasn’t carrying a weapon or he might have found out what the parent’s views are on the Second Amendment as well as the First.

And then there was the young college student in Modesto, CA, who got into hot water for handing out copies of the Constitution on campus on Constitution Day. The nitwit in the administration office admonished him that there is a time and place for everything. In Modesto, that would be on a spot big enough for one medium-sized person, out of the vulnerable students’ line of sight, where those arguing for crazy ideas are relegated. Unfortunately for the kid who thinks our country owes everything it ever did right to the Constitution, that square foot of land was booked through Christmas and perhaps forever. Which suggests to me that in California, the proper place and time for distribution of the US Constitution is in hell, when it freezes over.

The Big Cover-Up on Benghazi

benghazi I watched with great interest the questioning of State Department  Under-Secretary for Management Patrick Kennedy by members of the House Committee  on Foreign Affairs about the disaster in Benghazi. I never knew Kennedy  personally, but by reputation he was highly thought of…



The Bullies Emerge from the Bully-Pulpit

syriabombing2We have sat rapt before the Bully Pulpit of American imperialism, listening for many long months to the blabbermouths and big-shots of the neo-interventionist crowd tell us how urgently the world needs us to bomb Syria and perhaps dismember Bashar al Assad (I’m just assuming here). Yes, it is what we have all been hankering after, or so asserts that addled rooster John McCain. For people of McCain’s views, it is an absolute moral responsibility of the White Man to shoulder the Brown Man’s burdens and Americans won’t be able to look at ourselves in the mirror if we don’t flatten Damascus.

Finally, at last, hallelujah! The wait is over. We, the people of the United States, are about to bring more war to the people of Syria and surrounding countries, who apparently don’t have enough (with our help). Thousands of people, in addition to those whose blood is already on our hands, will perish in a mushroom cloud of violence after the US and its stooges in NATO pull the trigger. The President of the United States, an idiot of the first water, glided around talking about red lines no one dared cross, and then the Syrians, one party or another, had the audacity to use them. As if the fools running this country off the cliff of sanity never heard about how if you’ve got something, you’re going to use something, whether a bigger rock or a nuclear warhead. The genie is out of the bottle. Meanwhile, the late great Mr. Obama’s personal popularity has plummeted and it seems every world leader who can get away with it is yanking his chain. Never did a US president appear to all and sundry so weak, intellectually adrift and incompetent. Not even W.

I am not at all surprised that some weeks after handing the Syrian war to the CIA to run — our patron saint of guerrilla groups — the world is shocked into tortured outrage by the use of chemical weapons by somebody engaged in Syria’s civil war. That same somebody sniped at a UN convoy (oh, joy!). John Kerry just knows it is the Assad regime, no matter what anybody else says. We have the goods. The US is sure of it. I bet we are.

If you are saying to yourself, “is she suggesting the CIA had something to do with the chemical weapons incident?” the answer is yes. That is exactly what I’m saying. Of course they would never have personally used them, but plenty of proxies would be willing collaborators.

I mentioned in another post not long ago that the Agency was created for one purpose — running small coherent operations with a plan, a cast of characters, an endgame, and lots of money. But the Agency has developed all kinds of new purposes and resurrected old ones under the past couple of administrations and in response to terrorism. In the case of Syria and the use of chemical weapons, the operatives running the operation (aka war) are doing exactly what they are compelled to do by their very natures — meet the goal. They are bringing the same qualities for which they were recruited, including a knack for chicanery, deceit and manipulation, to a situation that is way, way above their pay grade. I can’t wait to see how it ends.

irancontraHere’s how it goes, as an example: if the Congress cuts off any form of military assistance to the Nicaraguan Contras, and you’re the CIA and certain military advisors, you do a dirty deal with another country to get the weapons to the Contras anyway. That would be Iran-Contra. Maybe you recall how well that went.

Here’s another example: if the US president doesn’t want to start a war with Syria that will bury him politically, then you go over the president’s head. Your first attempt is to develop a secret way to smuggle weapons to your mixed team of Al Qaida sympathizers and incompetents in Syria. To this end, you use the enthusiastic Turks as middlemen and operate out of a particularly hellacious corner of Libya riddled with radical sects and wannabe terrorists. If and when that falls flat, you need to ignite popular indignation over the cruel use of chemical weapons. The ensuing explosion of humanitarian fervor will swamp the US president, who himself told everybody what would take all choice out of his hands: the use of chemical weapons. And lots of them. If killing off 100 Syrian civilians doesn’t do it, the ante must be upped: now it will be 300 or 400 victims. Now Obama is going to look even dumber than he does already if he waits for the attacks to rise to a thousand a pop. Something has to give.

If you don’t believe the above can happen, you are still living in Dream Land, aka the former United States of America. I was the Nicaraguan Desk officer during the Iran-Contra affair and I can assure you that legality is the least of concerns when the Agency is running an operation, which is what this is to them. A really, really big operation, where the assets are NATO and the United States military.

thirdrailI’ll tell you what I think: I think the White House didn’t want to touch the third rail of war with Syria with a ten-foot pole and they thus fobbed off all responsibility for getting things done to the Agency, which has now acted true to form. The only question is what America’s foreign policy buffoons are going to do in Syria that will be a suitable encore to the ineptitude demonstrated throughout the Middle East and, indeed, the world under Barack Hussein Obama.

Gen. Dempsey tells us that merely bombing Syria back into the Stone Age is unlikely to solve the mess over there. I think what he wants to say is we will have to go in with our troops if we go in at all. I don’t know if he is urging that route or not. If he is, he needs to be fired or retired.

Kerry is all gung-ho on war now, a changed man. You know, he was against war before he was for it. And that pitiful specimen of manhood, Chuck Hagel, suddenly finds a taste for blasting people out of their shoes. And I don’t need to go into that freakish couple, Lindsay and Johnnie. We all know that for them, a day without warfare waged under the Red, White and Blue is a day without sunshine.

I think the critical point has been passed. Obama is afraid of looking like a 90-pound weakling, having perhaps realized he is not Olympian in nature but a mere mortal subject to failure and public ridicule.

The bullies are about to emerge from the Bully Pulpit. Yahoo.