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Thomas Paine

To argue with a person who has renounced the use of reason is like administering medicine to the dead.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

2 Sept - The View From Here - Military

The Palestine Ensign, flown by ships registere...Image via Wikipedia

 Helena Cobban's friendly (I hope!) web-site

The Iraqi skeleton in America's closet 

August 25

Today,  privations still continue. Today in Baghdad, 46 were killed in a series of coordinated car-bomb attacks, bringing to over 97,000 the number of Iraqi civilians who have confirmedly been killed in the political inferno the country has become since March 2003.
The U.S., which has been the occupying power under international law and in fact the strongest military/security presence in the country since March 2003, has to bear over-all responsibility for those deaths.
The invasion and occupation were, I repeat, unjustified. They were also acts of choice by Pres. Bush, the result of a decision he took under strong pressure from several parties including, notably, the strongly pro-Israeli networks that were dug well into the U.S. Congress and the Defense Department at that time.
Now, those same networks are still influential in the U.S. Congress, where their shrill calls for further escalation and the possible launching of a military action (= war) against Iran still receive a ready hearing from many Members.
Fortunately, they are not as influential in the Robert Gates Pentagon as they were in the Donald Rumsfeld Pentagon. So we still have some hope we may avert an outright military attack against Iran.
But the situation in Iraq certainly still deserves our strong concern.

F-16 Conflict News

Attack on Iraq's nuclear reactor

June 7, 2006 (by Jon Grinspan) - Today could be the twenty-fifth anniversary of a nuclear Iraq. Instead it marks the date of one of the most daring and controversial military actions in modern history.
Late in the afternoon of June 7, eight Israeli F-16s swooped out of the darkening Baghdad sky, bombed the reactor, and raced back to Israel unscathed. The preemptive raid succeeded in destroying Iraq's nuclear hopes - and sparking international outrage at Israel's aggression.
In the 1960s France had helped Israel secretly build a reactor and approximately 100 nuclear weapons. Not surprisingly, the Jewish state's new arsenal terrified the Arab world. The Palestinian Liberation Organization published The Israeli Bomb, a shocking report on the covert construction taking place in the Israeli desert.
Israeli intelligence learned of Hussein's plans in 1977. That same year Menachem Begin, the right-wing leader of the Likud party and former head of a terrorist organization, was elected Israel's prime minister. Begin's election broke the leftist Labor party's grip on the country's politics and launched an era of aggressive interventionism.
Begin decided to act, illegally. The only planes capable of making the 600-mile flight safely were state-of-the-art American-made F-16s. The jets had actually been intended for Iran but had been rerouted to Israel following the 1979 revolution. Unfortunately for Israel, they were sold for defensive use only; anything else would be against U.S. law.
To avoid radar detection the F-16s flew just a hundred feet above the deserts of Jordan and Saudi Arabia. They flattened the reactor's large dome and destroyed its complex machinery. At least eight people were killed, including a French advisor. The pilots then sped back home without taking a single round of antiaircraft fire. The raid was so sudden and successful that for days few believed it had actually happened.
The United Nations, the Soviet Union, and the Arab League all loudly condemned Israel's action. The raid made a joke of U.S. military sales; having failed to sell the jets to its former Iranian allies, America watched as Israel used those same planes against a friendly regime.
Israel's attack has obvious contemporary parallels. Today it is Iran that seems intent on gaining nuclear power.

( Standard 'Talking Point' in all 'analysis.' Note the total lack of supporting data. )

Reactor Reaction

An Iranian nuclear reactor will start operating in a few days. But Israel probably won't be bombing it.

If John Bolton wanted to get the world's attention, it worked. Earlier this week the former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations took to the airwaves to sound the alarm about the news that Russia will soon start loading fuel rods into an Iranian nuclear reactor it's been building for years outside of the city of Bushehr. .....the Russians, largely as the result of years of pressure from the United States, have committed themselves to taking back the spent fuel from the reactor and processing it themselves.

 John Bolton Opposed to Israel Nukes!
 Former US Ambassador to the UN John Bolton appeared Wednesday this week on The Daily Show for a third time and got a 'friendship bracelet' from Jon Stewart for doing so.

Bolton is a smart war-monger who is careful with words and couches his cheerleading for an Israeli strike against Tehran in lots of buffer material like calling his wanted Iran strike an "unattactive option".

Given his typical lawyerly shrewdness that I have come to expect and never underestimate, I was stunned when he abandoned his support of Israel's nuclear weapons stash.

Turn the page on Mister Bush? Never
I could and did and do doubt Bush's support for the troops, love of country and commitment to our security. And I can wrest no mercy from the bitterness and rage that I feel every time I remember what he and the pack of thugs around him accomplished for the troops, the country and our security.

I cannot and will not turn the page until George W. Bush, Dick Cheney and the others in that cabal of scorpions are brought to justice and make amends for Iraq. Which means never.  ....
With a bayonet called 9/11, and a script of concoctions and fabrications, President Bush and his buddies prodded the nation into an illegal preventive war, a war of aggression, in utter violation of the U.N. Charter. First came the lies, so many it was impossible to keep up even for Congresspeople, whose job it supposedly is to keep up. Then came the shock and awe, the torture, the secret prisons, the no-bid contracts, the pitiful claims that there was no insurgency.
And the endless flow of blood.....
There's a long list of the dead who would not be dead were it not for this war initiated out of bravado and doctored evidence. Thousands of dead Americans, and hundreds of thousands of dead Iraqis, most of whom didn't make it to any list. Deaths in any war are terrible enough. Deaths in a war of choice, a fabricated war, count as nothing short of murder.
When they couldn't get the CIA to give them the intelligence that would justify their moves they exerted pressure for a change of minds. They exaggerated, reinterpreted and rejiggered intelligence assessments. When all else failed, they brewed their own assessments.
They created a cabal of renegades specifically to carry out the Project for a New American Century's plans for Middle East hegemony.
They ignored Brent Scowcroft when he wrote in August 2002, "Don't Attack Saddam." They ignored the Army War College when it warned of the perils of invasion and occupation in a February 2003 report, Reconstructing Iraq: Insights, Challenges, And Missions For Military Forces In A Post-Conflict Scenario".
Bush proposed budget cuts for veterans health care.
They worked overtime to silence dissident voices. They deliberately took us into war under a cloak of deceit, poured billions of our dollars into holes we still don't know all the locations of, encouraged al Qaeda to spread its operations to Iraq and transformed a dictator's fiefdom into a hellhole of sectarian violence in which civilians died in the tens, perhaps hundreds of thousands.

 ( Still hasn't 'got the memo'. Deaths post-invasion sensibly estimated at 1.36+ Million, 2 million displaced internally, plus 2 million fled the country )
 War News

Arming Iraq:  How the US and Britain Secretly Built Saddam’s War Machine
The 3 most important issues of oil politics are access, reliability of flow, and price stability. (p.5)

Selling arms to Middle Eastern states is a way to preserve access to oil as well as recoup money lost through its purchase.  These arms sales stabilize oil flow by tying Middle Eastern states to western military suppliers. (p.5)

 In 1969 the Nixon Doctrine that called for supporting the military of allies in strategic areas as an alternative to dispatching US forces was implemented.  The doctrine was applied to the Gulf States through the Twin Pillar Policy that armed Iran and Saudi Arabia in exchange they act on behalf of US/western interests.  Iranian spending on US arms jumped from $500 million in 1972 to $4.3 billion in 1974. (p.9-10)

 Iraq was the closest Middle Eastern state to the west until the 1958 coup that installed Gen. Abdul Karam Qassim who established relations with the Soviet Union.  Iraq’s relations to the west worsened with the 1963 coup that brought the Ba’ ath party to power and the 1972 Iraq Friendship and Cooperation Treaty with the Soviet Union.  In 1978 Carter placed Iraq on a list of states that supported terrorism.  (p.11)

 Former employees of Racal, an arms manufacturer, were tried for corruption as a result of US and Britain relations with Iran. (p.14)

The US sells civilian helicopters as a way to supply military equipment to a country despite congressional opposition.  This tactic was used in El Salvador and Iraq.  In 1983 the US sold Iraq 60 Hugh MD-500 defender helicopters and 10 Bell UH-1 helicopters, used to spray chemicals on the Kurdish opposition. (p.38)

Reactions and Reactors
 We are not getting great input, analysis and strategy from CNN, PBS, ABC, Fox and NBC. What does it mean? Frankly, we think, they stay away from the topic because they would rather be politically correct and this topic is fraught with political correct minefields.

opit said...

    Perennial hands-down favourites as 'menaces to security' are the nations which cooperate with international desires to limit the spread of nuclear arms.As a complete oxymoron then, it is tough to beat the premise that any country which has signed on to the Nuclear NonProliferation Treaty and submitted to over 4000 inspections by the IAEA has WMD mischief in mind. Yet that was the storyline used in determining the fate of Iraq...where none was found.
    Big Surprise. Not.
    I've ranted at length on the matter of nuclear tech designed NOT to go Bang vis-a-vis that which is. And on the likelihood of Russia - which showed the USA in no uncertain terms what it thought of nuclear arms on U.S. missiles in Turkey during the Cuban Missile Crisis - creating a threat to itself in its back yard. That's as in the Middle East....not near North America.Such a scenario is literally beyond belief.
    Drinking the koolaid seems to be a popular exercise.
    The Japanese observed the anniversaries of the use of nuclear WMD by the only nation ever to have done so...in recorded history. That makes this perspective particularly informed
    September 2, 2010 10:34 AM

The two faces of Rumsfeld

2000: director of a company which wins $200m contract to sell nuclear reactors to North Korea
2002: declares North Korea a terrorist state, part of the axis of evil and a target for regime change

Mr Rumsfeld was a non-executive director of ABB, a European engineering giant based in Zurich, when it won a $200m (£125m) contract to provide the design and key components for the reactors. The current defence secretary sat on the board from 1990 to 2001, earning $190,000 a year. He left to join the Bush administration.

The reactor deal was part of President Bill Clinton's policy of persuading the North Korean regime to positively engage with the west.
North Korea expelled the inspectors last year and withdrew from the nuclear non-proliferation treaty in January at about the same time that the Bush administration authorised $3.5m to keep ABB's reactor project going.

North Korea is thought to have offered to scrap its nuclear facilities and missile pro gramme and to allow international nuclear inspectors into the country. But Pyongyang demanded that security guarantees and aid from the US must come first.

Mr Bush now insists that he will only negotiate a new deal with Pyongyang after the nuclear programme is scrapped. Washington believes that offering inducements would reward Pyongyang's "blackmail" and encourage other "rogue" states to develop weapons of mass destruction. 

You are looking at the reason for the war against Iraq. This war was initiated by Ariel Sharon for Israel's strategic benefit!
Thats what Israel does. It has its intelligence organization, Mossad, carry out false flag operations and deceives others into attacking their enemies. In short they get others to fight their wars for them.


 Marshals Military Might To Challenge Asian Century

China overtook Japan as the world’s second-largest economy during the second financial quarter of this year and three-quarters of the BRIC (Brazil, Russia, India, China) nations, the world’s largest emerging economies, are entirely or primarily in Asia. During its first heads of state summit in Russia last year, BRIC “urged the creation of a new global financial security system.” [1] At the time its members accounted for 15 percent of the global economy and 42 percent of international currency reserves [2] even after the advent of the U.S.-triggered world financial crisis in 2008.

60 percent of humanity lives in Asia and the continent is home to several of the fastest growing economies in the world.

Demographics and economics alike assure a preeminent role for Asia in any natural – which is to say peaceful – course of development.

The Asia-Europe-Africa grouping contains the overwhelming majority of the human race, perhaps as many as 5.6 billion of the world’s 6.8 billion inhabitants. The entire Western Hemisphere, by contrast, has a population under one billion and Oceania’s numbers are negligible.

But for 500 years a small number of nations in the global West and North, a limited contingent of countries that collectively calls itself the North Atlantic community, has dominated most of the world.

Military formations were used to spread American and Western European influence throughout Europe, Africa and the Middle East – NATO and its numerous partnership programs, U.S. Africa Command, ad hoc “coalitions of the willing” – and into the Caucasus, the Caspian Sea basin, Central Asia and South Asia, in which last location the Pentagon and NATO are waging a nine-year-old war with 150,000 troops.

In the past eleven years the U.S. has obtained military, including missile shield, bases and facilities in parts of the world where the Pentagon had never ensconced itself before: Kosovo, Bulgaria, Romania, Poland, Hungary, Israel, Iraq, Kuwait, Jordan, Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, Mali, Afghanistan, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan and Colombia.

Just since last year the Pentagon has conducted bilateral and multinational military exercises in and off the coasts of nations like India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Mongolia, Cambodia, Vietnam, Malaysia, East Timor, Finland, Sweden, the Baltic states, Poland, Hungary, Bulgaria, Romania, Ukraine, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Angola, Burkino Faso, Gabon, Ghana, Mali, Mozambique, Senegal and Uganda in addition to traditional Cold War allies and partners, including holding the first large-scale joint war games in Israel.

This month troops from the U.S. and other NATO nations have participated in military exercises in Mongolia and Kazakhstan, which both border Russia and China.

If Asia is superior with regard to economic growth and potential, resources natural and human, and other factors, the U.S. supersedes it in one key category: An overwhelming advantage in military firepower. The world’s largest expeditionary warfighting machine, U.S. Pacific Command, and its biggest naval “permanent forward projection force,” the U.S. Seventh Fleet, both are concentrated on East Asia.

Predator Drones to Patrol Entire U.S.-Mexico Border from September 1
"With the deployment of the Predator in Texas, we will now be able to cover the southwest border from the El Centro sector in California all the way to the Gulf of Mexico in Texas, providing critical aerial surveillance assistance to personnel on the ground," Napolitano said during a conference call.

"This is yet another critical step we have taken in ensuring the safety of the border and is an important tool in our security toolbox," she added.

( So much for migrant workers being available to take in the crops. )

Britain: Terrorists Use “Conspiracy Theories” in Attempt to Discredit Government and Recruit New Members

( 10-4. Got that. Now that the government blatantly discredits itself...the fault lies with Whistleblowers. No wonder the lifespan of journalists is such as to make them an endangered species...and there's no money for their upkeep !)
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