Tuesday, December 26, 2006
There is an email floating around worth commenting. It is attributed to an anonymous author, but it can stand on its own.
From: email@example.com [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org]
WOULDN'T IT BE GREAT TO TURN ON THE TV AND HEAR ANY U.S. PRESIDENT, DEMOCRAT OR REPUBLICAN GIVE THE FOLLOWING SPEECH?
My Fellow Americans: As you all know, the defeat of Iraq regime has been completed.
Since congress does not want to spend any more money on this war, our mission in Iraq is complete.
This morning I gave the order for a complete removal of all American forces from Iraq . This action will be complete within 30 days. It is now time to begin the reckoning.
Before me, I have two lists. One list contains the names of countries which have stood by our side during the Iraq conflict. This list is short. The United Kingdom , Spain , Bulgaria , Australia , and Poland are some of the countries listed there.
The other list contains everyone not on the first list. Most of the world's nations are on that list. My press secretary will be distributing copies of both lists later this evening.
Let me start by saying that effective immediately, foreign aid to those nations on List 2 ceases immediately and indefinitely. The money saved during the first year alone will pretty much pay for the costs of the Iraqi war.
The American people are no longer going to pour money into third world Hellholes and watch those government leaders grow fat on corruption.
Need help with a famine? Wrestling with an epidemic? Call France .
In the future, together with Congress, I will work to redirect this money toward solving the vexing social problems we still have at home. On that note, a word to terrorist organizations Screw with us and we will hunt you down and eliminate you and all your friends from the face of the earth.
Thirsting for a gutsy country to terrorize? Try France , or maybe China .
I am ordering the immediate severing of diplomatic relations with France , Germany , and Russia . Thanks for all your help, comrades. We are retiring from NATO as well. Bon chance, mes a mis.
I have instructed the Mayor of New York City to begin towing the many UN diplomatic vehicles located in Manhattan with more than two unpaid parking tickets to sites where those vehicles will be stripped, shredded and crushed I don't care about whatever treaty pertains to this. You creeps have tens of thousands of unpaid tickets. Pay those tickets tomorrow or watch your precious Benzes, Beamers and limos be turned over to some of the finest chop shops in the world. I love New York .
A special note to our neighbors Canada is on List 2. Since we are likely to be seeing a lot more of each other, you folks might want to try not pissing us off for a change.
Mexico is also on List 2. President Fox and his entire corrupt government really need an attitude adjustment. I will have a couple extra tank and infantry divisions sitting around. Guess where I am going to put em? Yep, border security.
Oh, by the way, the United States is abrogating the NAFTA treaty - starting now.
We are tired of the one-way highway. Immediately, we'll be drilling for oil in Alaska - which will take care of this country's oil needs for decades to come. If you're an environmentalist who opposes this decision, I refer you to List 2 above: pick a country and move there. They care.
It is time for America to focus on its own welfare and its own citizens. Some will accuse us of isolationism. I answer them by saying, "darn tootin."
Nearly a century of trying to help folks live a decent life around the world has only earned us the undying enmity of just about everyone on the planet. It is time to eliminate hunger in America It is time to eliminate homelessness in America . To the nations on List 1, a final thought. Thank you guys. We owe you and we won't forget.
To the nations on List 2, a final thought: You might want to learn to speak Arabic.
God bless America . Thank you and good night.
If you can read this, thank a teacher. If you are reading it in English, thank a soldier.
(Please forward this to at least ten friends and see what happens! Let's get this to every USA computer!)
No I don't think that I want to hear any president give that speech. That is the "either you with us or against us" speech. That is the "we don't need anyone else" speech. That is the "attitude that got us where we are" speech.
I looked up the foreign aid for 2004 it break down like this in billions of dollars
That comes to about $27B, that would cover only not quite 7 months of the war, not anywhere close to paying for it. Which of these countries do you think does not deserve the aid? Most of it is for military assistance which we think is in our national interest. It is a LIE to say that the US is subsidizing un-supportive countries around the world. Your message is mean spirited and based on false assumptions. Our aid in the past has been more humanitarian, but nothing of the size that you want us to believe.
Why should the US or any country refuse to deal with any other country on the basis of disagreement on a particular issue? My inference from your statements are that we are the bully on the block and anyone who disagrees on any issue can just take a hike.
The war in Iraq was a mistake, based on false information, and executed badly. We failed why do we now need to divide the world in list A and list B? The world changes, situations change. Germany, Japan, China, and Russia were all mortal enemies at one time. Now we deal with them as world partners. Vietnam was the last country to kick our butt, now we want to develop trade relations.
We cannot go it alone, and there is no reason to try.
Liberty or Death Commented:
P., do you think I wrote that? It came from the liberal Andy Rooney. I don't agree with some of it, but it was meant to be humor, not policy. But you made a few statements that I would like to comment on. We could quibble about your aid numbers, but they are illustrative. What kind of return do you think we get in good will, 10%, any? Egypt is the second largest producer of Islamic Jihadists behind Saudi Arabia, who is clearly number 1.
Aid to any nation other than military aid is Irrational and unproductive. When our government gives money to other nations there are always strings attached. Most of it is seen as US meddling. We should stop democratization and all forms of humanitarian meddling. Charity should be personal not a mandate of law. The US people are the biggest givers in the world. Aid for aids sake is charity, therefore not a government function.
I am not an Isolationist, but I strongly believe that nations should cooperate on common interests, and agree to disagree on other interests. I prefer "a live and let live foreign policy". I disagree with Art Rooney on that one but he was using hyperbole as satire.
Your list of mortal enemy countries is curious. Mortal enemy should not be a statement of our foreign policy, but rather recognition of other countries intent towards us. Intent and capabilities determine those who wish to harm us. We have no enemies of our own. We are willing to work with everyone. Talk is always a good thing. But some nations choose to harm us. It is they, not us who make themselves enemies.
Foreign policy including war is the means to stop other nations from harming us. So lets look at your list, Germany, Japan, China, and Russia. China and Russia clearly are our enemies. They are imperialistic, arm those who wish to harm us and oppose any attempt we have in foreign policy such as sanctions on Iran. China is waging economic warfare as well as shooting at us (laser hits on our satellites). China is intentionally engaging in unfair trade practices such as arbitrarily fixing their currency exchange rate low. Japan's culture considers trade as means of warfare, and with their government policy to intermix government and big business the policies of their businesses are the policies of their government. So their unfair trade practices are considered warfare. This is not how we perceive them, but how they perceive us. We are not in the enemy business anymore. Our last enemies were Mexico, Spain and Great Britain. We chose them. We seized land from all three and have not given it back. Germany and Japan were not our enemies, we were their enemies. What did we do to them after we crushed their ability to harm us? We spent our treasure to rebuild their countries. We took nothing and allowed them to be free states. What would Hitler and Tojo do to us if they won?
The US has the most ambiguous foreign policy of any nation in the world. We call those who wish to harm us like China and Russia friends. We have no friends. In fact the word "friend" and "enemy" are labels that confuse Americans. It is no wonder we no moral clarity when it comes to foreign policy. We treat foreign policy as just another domestic political issue. They see our president calling China our friend, even though they are shooting at our satellites, and doing everything the can to help those who wish to harm us.
Our bipartisan government for the last 60 years is totally responsible for this lack of moral clarity. We had moral clarity in WW II. The entire country rallied behind our government. In fact we have not declared war on anyone until today when we have a declared war on terror. Who the heck is terror, how do we stop him from harming us? Is the country united behind the president today? Nope. Moral clarity is out the window. It's Bush's war, it is the Republicans war. Can you say Bosnia and Darfor, then you can say it is Clinton's war. Darfor is a proposed liberal war. Lack of moral clarity is a bipartisan mistake.
When you label a nation as a friend or enemy you conjure up a certain picture in the minds of the people. The American people use every day context to define what that means. A friend, therefore is someone you can accept even though the occasionally harm you. You don't militarily attack a friend. Chuck the labels if you want moral clarity and therefore the bipartisan support of the American people. Define harmful behavior of any nation or society or group as harmful. When it gets to the point where we must act diplomatically to stop the harm, the president needs to clearly define the harmful behavior. Next he needs to get the consent of the American people that is time to act and what action is appropriate. Is this possible? People understand harmful behavior. They have raised kids. It is an easy analogy for them to understand. It is far easier to get moral clarity on a harmful behavior, than on an entire nation. This also allows us to seamlessly include the behavior of Islamic Jihadists as harmful even though they are not a nation, not a specific organized group but groups of people and individuals that are seeking mortal harm on us. They want us dead.
While the Islamic Jihadists grow stronger and more strident, we are dissolving into partisan bickering and are losing the will to act. Will we act when one of our cities is nuked? Yes. Why do we as Americans have to wait till we are brutally attacked? A brutal attack galvanizes the American people to act and the look to the president to clearly define the harmful behavior and who the perp was. Bush never made the connection between Islamic Jihadists and Iraq. In fact he is yet to define Islamic Jihadists as harmful. First it was "terror" and "Axis of Evil". Recently it was "Islamofacists", a term he made up without a detailed explanation of what that means. Now the term of the day is "extremist". Get a picture in you head who an “extremist” is? Sorta. If we all took a quiz, would we come up with same answer? Nope. It is no wonder that as a people we still lack moral clarity on what will eventually correctly labeled as Islamic Jihadists.
Oh, and every nation should prepare to go it alone. Seek common interest where you can, but if you can't go it alone you are on the extinction list. Just a matter of time.
Liberty or Death
Wednesday, December 20, 2006
On 14 December Fred Kagan posted a plan for success in Iraq on the American Enterprise Institute for public Policy Research. Below are his recommendations in italics followed by my comments.
There is a way to do this.
o We must change our focus from training Iraqi soldiers to securing the Iraqi population and containing the rising violence. Securing the population has never been the primary mission of the U.S. military effort in Iraq, and now it must become the first priority.
Agree with Fred.
o We must send more American combat forces into Iraq and especially into Baghdad to support this operation. A surge of seven Army brigades and Marine regiments to support clear-and-hold operations starting in the spring of 2007 is necessary, possible, and will be sufficient.
Fred needs to understand how the Military Industrial Process works. There are 3 or more states of readiness, I am a Navy Aviation man, we have three. Readiness means functioning equipment, manpower at strength levels, personnel trained and spare parts and tools available. The highest level of readiness is in deployed forces, usually around 90%. The second level is the about to be deployed, readiness begins at 60-75% and increases to 90% when its time to ship out. This is a one year cycle in today's environment. Very short. The third category is all other units not in the first 2. There readiness ranges from 30%-50% in war time. Why so low? The military robs Peter to pay Paul. This is required because there is never enough money for everyone to be at 100%. This has been true for the last 36 years that I participated in supporting forces. No president in my 36 years ever asked for a war supplement that would get all forces to 90% or better. This is purely political. Additionally, the military robs the present to fund the future. War supplements are an opportunity to reshuffle the annual budget. Primary use is to fund overruns in the procurement process so the new stuff can be delivered.
Bottom line, there are not 7 brigades (3-4 if he is lucky) in any condition to be deployed by spring. Lead time to surge procurement of equipment, recruit bodies, train the bodies and ship the hardware to Iraq, 1 year minimum after funding is provided. Why? Procurement lead times including hiring more workers, Depot repair lead time including hiring addition mechanics, training time, class room and field. You will also have to increase the number of trainers, who require trainers. 1 year is very optimistic.
o These forces, partnered with Iraqi units, will clear critical Sunni and mixed Sunni-Shia neighborhoods, primarily on the west side of the city.
Doable once the forces are there.
o After the neighborhoods have been cleared, U.S. soldiers and Marines, again partnered with Iraqis, will remain behind to maintain security.
A good idea. Will work as long as we are there. What happens when we leave. Remember we are no longer training Iraqi forces.
o As security is established, reconstruction aid will help to reestablish normal life and, working through Iraqi officials, will strengthen Iraqi local government.
No chance. First it requires new funding from the Democrats, very iffy. Other than the military, all other US governmental agencies in Iraq have been disasters. Newt stated this on Meet the Press Sunday. War supplements for the aid agencies, ain't none. Reconstruction progress to date in Kurdistan, outstanding. In Sunni and Shia land very little. After 3 years the oil is not at 100% and electricity and water/sewerage is none existent in some areas less than 100% each day everywhere. Won't happen in the next 2 years if ever.
This approach requires a national commitment to victory in Iraq:
o The ground forces must accept longer tours for several years. National Guard units will have to accept increased deployments during this period.
This is just plain uninformed. Not only do the troops suffer, 2 years in urban combat (the most stressful combat possible, 12 hours a day seven days a week where a bullet can come at any time from anywhere) will destroy many of the troops mentally. And what about the families, 2 years means busted marriages and lots of problems with single parent kids.
o Equipment shortages must be overcome by transferring equipment from non-deploying active duty, National Guard, and reserve units to those about to deploy. Military industry must be mobilized to provide replacement equipment sets urgently.
OK Fred you are going to take equipment from units at 30-40% readiness. At best you will have to rob 2 units to equip one unit. Tell all the governors that their guard units have no weapons, so don't ask them to do anything for 2 years. Politically impossible and in the age of eminent attack on the homeland who you going to call? Ghost Busters?
o The president must request a dramatic increase in reconstruction aid for Iraq. Responsibility and accountability for reconstruction must be assigned to established agencies. The president must insist upon the completion of reconstruction projects. The president should also request a dramatic increase in CERP funds.
Fred, you wan to give more money to the same agencies that have failed miserably in Iraq for the last 3 years. Plus you can't reconstruct in a war zone. Total loss of an idea.
o The president must request a substantial increase in ground forces end strength. This increase is vital to sustaining the morale of the combat forces by ensuring that relief is on the way. The president must issue a personal call for young Americans to volunteer to fight in the decisive conflict of this age.
Fred this is essential, recruiting is not a problem with money. But building new units require lots of money and can take up to 3 years. Gen. Peter Pace, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said last month that it would take two years to recruit, train and equip a new division. Rep. Ike Skelton of Missouri and Sen. Jack Reed of Rhode Island, Democrats on the House and Senate armed services committees, say the extra 10,000 troops alone would cost the Pentagon about $1.2 billion a year. Boot camps graduate all but useless privates. Where do all the other ranks come from? You have to rob the front line troops and backfill with what, raw recruits? Who do the front line troops give up? There worst troops of every rank. Insane. We did that in Vietnam and the rookies were more a danger to themselves than the enemy. You have to give them 1 year of field training and advanced schools. Oops, we can't do that because we took all the equipment. So no training until new equipment arrives.
In summary, nice thought but can't happen in time. All the tasks you propose are serial. Timeline, get lots of money from a Democratic congress. 50-50 you won't get anything. But lets assume 3 months. Procurement lead time, including hiring and training, 18 months. Field training of recruits and reshuffling of 1000s of other ranks, 1 year (very generous). Shipping lead time for Humvees and Helos 3 months. Pacify bad guys, 6 months. Reconstruction 2 years, if ever. Total timeline 69 months. This assumes a favorable Democratic congress and a new president who is willing.
Oh Fred, if you are creating more units where are you going to put them? What fully operational bases are empty? None. Can we put them in the bases that are empty because the troops are over seas? Yes, but where to do put the families, base housing is already full.
Oh, and Fred, tell the bad guys in the rest of the world we need a 2-3 year time out. We took all the equipment from units not in or going to Iraq.
I am not army, but very experienced in Naval Aviation helicopter procurement and deployment. I have stood up 10 new squadrons from the ground up. 3 years is very fast. Normally five, because facilities and housing is a 5 year money process.
Ever wonder why we have 150,000 troops in Iraq and we surge with 8,000 troops? The military claims not enough troops. That is code speak, not enough means not enough of the right troops. What are needed are infantry with urban warfare training. Subtract the Air Force, they don't carry guns. Subtract the Armor units. You can grab a few infantry companies and support troops but then your Armor unit is then useless. Subtract the companies with tanks and Bradleys from the mechanized units. Pull out the infantry companies and support troops. Again the Mechanized units are now useless. Same is true in the US. Subtract the artillery battalions, can't fire in the city. Fred where are you going to get 50,000 urban warfare trained infantry? Do they even exist?
Liberty or Death
Tuesday, December 19, 2006
The purpose of this post is to get you to think like a strategic analyst. Our government and private organizations have thousands of them that are better trained than I am. Since it appears that Bush ignored the advise of the analysts it is important that everyone understand the basics. If I succeed you will have a new way to look at geopolitics.
9-11 caught us totally by surprise in two ways. One, the capability of a small organization to execute a sophisticated attack. Two, the will or moral clarity to attempt the attack. Up until 9-11 we treated small groups as terrorists to be handled by the FBI in CONUS and Embassy assets O CONUS.
Strategic planning cycles assess enemy nations and match them with US vulnerabilities. They addressed capabilities and intentions. We never planned for a handful of dedicated guys to do big time damage to the US or its interests. Bombing an embassy is chunk change. Bombing the Cole is more serious. The perp was easy to identify, Osama bragged about it. Who were the ground troops? Saudis who were willing to die for their cause and Allah. That is serious motivation. I won’t go into the strategic and military mistakes Bush made in response to 9-11, but I will say he did everything wrong. What should he have done? You should have some ideas when I am finished.
First, all of our planning models needed serious revision. Our vulnerabilities needed total overhaul, since our commerce, infrastructure and citizens were now targets, not just our military. Enemies now were less than nations. So we needed to add organizations and taking a page from Israel, individuals or very small groups. Who was our fundamental enemy? Islamic Jihadists; people willing to die to kill us were the foot soldiers, Al-Qaeda was the small organization that provided, planning, training, weapons, travel documents and money. These are the same skills as enemy nations, so our model is OK we just needed to serious reassess who the new enemies are. From the bottom up the smallest threat is a single individual. What is his profile? An Islamic Jihadist who could be highly educated, or not (Richard the Shoe Bomber). Where are these Jihadists? How do they become enabled to harm us? Using Al-Qaeda as a model, it was small, Islamist, had money, weapons, training facilities and cover ( very difficult to find) churning out Jihadists. But where did they come from? All over the Middle East scattered amongst a population that was not a threat to the US. What makes an ordinary member of Islam a Jihadist? Motivation. Where did that come from? First, a religion that glorifies death, Clerics and schools that indoctrinate children to grow up hating Americans and Jews (Educated Jihadist potentials) and disenfranchised Moslems with no future, the massive unwashed of the Middle East including most Palestinians (Uneducated Jihadist potentials). How does a potential become a real Jihadist? Money, training, weapons, travel documents and cover. Who provides that? Small and large organizations, and nations. Can these organizations manufacture weapons and money? No, they get the weapons from nations and the money from rich people, organizations and nations.
We can now load our model with more than nations.
1.Uneducated Islamic Jihadists individuals or small groups capable of shooting, bombing and IEDs.
2.Educated Islamic Jihadists individuals or very small groups capable of sophisticated attacks, from destroying infrastructure all the way to WMD attacks.
3.Small and large organizations, Al-Qaeda, Hezbollah, Hamas, Fatah, organized crime and many others.
4. Nations that want to harm us directly ( Iran ) or indirectly, Korea, Russia, China, Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria, Saudi Arabia and Pakistan are the biggies. Pakistan is special in that the government is indirectly hostile (nuclear proliferation), worse only one man keeps it from being a serious nuclear threat.
This list is not exhaustive, but you get the point. Next lets assess capabilities. I will address only some examples. Iran is a serious threat to the whole Middle East and especially Israel. It can stop the flow of Persian Gulf oil for months if not a year. It facilitates organizations like Hezbollah and Hamas. It has chemical weapons. When it acquires nukes it can use them or give them to organizations. Korea, Russia and China are major arms exporters. Russia and China have imperialist ambitions. Saudi Arabia plays both sides of the fence. The government wants to get along but it does not control the people. Radical clerics do. Wahabbists, now called Salafis churn out potential Jihadists through Madras schools that are all over the world including the US. They are funded by Rich Saudi donors. You know what the others can do.
US capabilities. Almost anything. Unlimited military force, bribe money, covert operations, naval blockades, high seas seizures, embargoes of all types including food, economic threats such as loss of most favored nation status, loss of all trade, and diplomacy (creditable threats). We can bankrupt China for example by stopping all trade.
One other concept is vital to understand. Anytime you tinker with the world, you may achieve your goals, or not but there always unintended consequences. Those are hard to calculate but it is essential that you do. Let me provide some examples. We can nuke Saudi Arabia off the map eliminating the largest source of Jihadists, bad guy money, and Madras schools. This is a push of a button and it is done. But what would be the reaction of the world and our own people? The losses would exceed the gains. Non-Starter. What about Iraq? Much more complex but understandable. Choose regime change, destruction of their army, and democratization. Bush’s choices. What were the benefits; possible stopping of WMD proliferation, stopping of military, and financial assistance to organizations such as Al-Qaeda? A potential stable democracy in the Middle East that leans west. What are the down sides? WMD moved to Syria, eliminating the only army that was a check to Iranian imperialism, democracy has enabled sectarian civil war, Insurgents harbored by the Sunnis, and the flight of 150,000 educated middle class professionals. Net plus or minus? A huge minus. Bad idea. Smashing the Taliban, and Al-Qaeda camps in Afghanistan. Helps some. Negatives, Taliban and Al-Qaeda ran south to safe havens in Pakistan and the mountains of Afghanistan. Occupying Afghanistan creates targets for the cheap Jihadists and some nationals that got away. A small net plus.
What is wrong with this picture? In five years we have done nothing to curb the creation of Jihadists, the most serious threat to American citizens and infrastructure. First, we have eliminated only a handful of potentials. Second we have done nothing to disrupt the creation of fully trained, armed, financed and documented Jihadists. What about organizations? Nothing. They are stronger today than five years ago. What have we done in five years to reduce the threat to America? Almost nothing. What could we have done? Lots of things and simultaneously. I’ll pick just one. Squeeze the Saudis. Threaten to topple their government. We won’t if you seize the private money going to organizations, seize the radical clerics, and shut down the Madras schools. Cost, nothing. Net plus, significant reduction of Jihadists. If you want to use military force, roll through Lebanon and Syria. Trash the Shia part of Lebanon, Kill Hezbollah. Chase the remnants into Syria. Trash Syria, the Bathists and the rest of Hezbollah. LEAVE! No targets for the Jihadists. Pluses, Hezbollah crushed, lots of Shia dead, a Jihadist supporting nation destroyed. Down side, world condemnation. Big deal. What did world condemnation do to the Soviets when they invaded Czechoslovakia? Nothing.
Smart readers will have come to this conclusion, how do we eliminate the Jihadists, are not they are the real threat? Short of nuking the Middle East, we can’t eliminate them or even seriously reduce them in the next 10 years. Who can? Only the moderate Muslims can eliminate the Jihadists. I will leave it to you to determine a plan to accomplish that.
Oh, by the way. Wouldn’t it be reassuring that our government can name the real threat. But in 5 years we have gone from “terror” and axis of evil to Islamofacists, a term that does not exist in Islam. Moral Clarity? Nope. Is Bush that dumb? Nope. He doesn’t have the answer.
Liberty or Death
Monday, December 18, 2006
America’s biggest failure in Iraq is doing things the American way. And worse we insist the Iraqis also do things the American way. American democracy, American goals, American methods. When one culture conquers a nation of 3 cultures that it does not want to rule forever, you have to make choices that make sense to the conquered. Saddam could make three cultures play together as one nation because he was a ruthless dictator. When the American military smashed that dictatorship it also smashed the means of cohesion. Worse it established itself as the new government, and only later asked the people to elect a democratic Iraqi government, but do it the American way. Democracies require the consent of the governed. Did anyone ask the Iraqis if the wanted one nation under a democratic system? No, we imposed an America way of governing and expected the governed to act as Americans would. Iraqis are not Americans, they are Middle Easterners.
Middle Easterners do no not think, behave or dream like Americans. Their culture is one of families, extended families, tribes, sectarianism, and lastly nations. Religious fundamentalism is very strong, and is weakly controlled by the Persian Gulf secular dictatorships. Turkey, a democracy, is the only exception. And it suffers the sectarian strife similar to Iraq today. Iran and Afghanistan’s history is one of sectarian dictatorships that were recently hijacked by theocrats and warrant special consideration. Middle Eastern societies function, but not anything like the American society. They have a thousand year history of religion, nepotism, bribery, tribal loyalty and inter-tribal and sectarian strife. They have an innate distrust if not outright hatred of infidels.
Newt Gingrich said it well on Meet the Press Sunday when he said, the day the statue fell is the day an interim Iraqi government should have taken charge and been the only voice to the Iraqi people. We failed; Paul Bremer was the voice of authority. The liberation we sought quickly turned into an occupation by Infidels. Worse, peace was in the hands of American soldiers using American methods vice an Iraqi Army that the people understood and could function with. Domestically, we disbanded the army and instantly created 60% unemployment among young men. A recipe for disaster in the strongest country.
OK we did everything wrong in Iraq. What can we do better the next time? Use of American military might destroys the institutions and fabric of the society we crush. If our goal is disruption then nobody can do it better than the American military. If your goal is a moderate American leaning secular government one must realize that the military can't do that by itself. This is an extremely difficult task, and one that the State Dept. and other non-military agencies were totally unprepared to pick up. Why? The military doesn’t question why, they do what the commander in chief orders. But the commander in chief is not a commander to the civilian organizations like the State Dept. He is just another boss. They are entrenched bureaucracies, with their own visions of how things should be. Does anyone believe Bush got the buy-in and support of the bureaucracies before he went into Iraq? Powell’s resignation should have been a red flag.
Can the president accomplish anything in the Middle East with just the military besides kill and destroy? Surprisingly, the answer is yes. Except for Iran the rest of the Middle East oil nations, and they are the only ones that matter strategically to the US, are moderate dictatorships/kingdoms. They all have armies. We have had senior-to-senior contact with these armies of the Middle East for many years. For every general they have we have generals who know their guys on a personal, first name drinking buddy basis. Many are patriots, with loyalties to their country but are not happy with current state of affairs. Some are totally loyal to the current dictator.
Newt Sunday revealed another characteristic about Middle Eastern leaders and diplomats. They lie in private and speak the truth in public. American and the rest of the world are the opposite. They speak the truth in private and lie in public. Wow is that a revelation! How can we exploit the differences? The key lessons learned in Iraq are that military destruction causes chaos and that the commander in chief can only trust the military. A significant handicap or is it? If you think like an American it is, but if you think like a Middle Easterner there are opportunities. There is a great deal of internal tension in the moderate Middle East. Islamism, theocratic leadership is on the rise. Saudi Arabia is the worst case. The government is run by the House of Saud, but the people are controlled by the theocrats. This works because the House of Saud is afraid to crack down on the radicals but rather pays off the theocrats with oil money. This is great for Saudi Arabia but not so great for America. The radicals are now well funded and led, so are perfectly happy to kill Infidels (Americans) rather than their own leaders.
We have learned from the Iraq debacle that American troops are the worlds finest at destroying things, but the Middle East will never accept occupation or rule by infidels. So what can America do? If you do not want to smash the secular nations like Iraq and leave chaos then you have to do things the Middle Eastern way. What is that? Middle Easterners also know that we speak the truth in private. Use the friendship of our generals with their generals to enable a coup. What do we offer? A Middle East solution, lots of money and what ever support they request. Forget the senior staff they are already well bribed, but do not directly control any troops. Who does? The brigade commanders and below. That’s why lots of money. For a coup to work the commander needs to buy the loyalty of his underlings. Promise the brigade commanders it will be their country to do with, as they wish, no strings except one, crush the Islamist radicals. Would they do that? In a heartbeat. The theocrats would be as big a threat to them as they are to the current leaders.
This is a win-win. It is impossible for our military to go into a Middle Eastern country and root out the bad guys and not kill any good guys. As infidels we would get even less support from the public than we are getting in Iraq. The people would hate us; and they are the only ones who know who the radicals and their financial patrons are. But their own military would be accepted by the people and the moderate people would be more than willing to help their own soldiers find the radicals where they would never help infidels. Radicals gone and no American boots on the ground or American casualties. Moderate military, now millionaires and in charge of the oil owing nothing to anyone once the rid the place of radicals.
But Liberty or Death their military would not coup their leaders. Stop thinking like an American; think like a Middle Easterner. Is their loyalty to the current dictator? No. What about their oath to the constitution? What constitution? Their loyalties are family, extended family, personal friendships, tribe and sect then country and dictator.
Fact of life, any military solution will involve massive civilian casualties. Why? It is not the armies but the people of the Middle East countries that are our enemy. If we don’t kill a lot of civilians we fail. But the panty wetting American public and drive by media would never accept this. So lets get the Middle Easterners to solve our problem for us. But we need to move quickly, before the whole Middle East is a theocracy.
Liberty or Death
Friday, December 15, 2006
M. Zuhdi Jasser is a Phoenix physician and chairman of the American Islamic Forum for Democracy. He can be reached at his blogsite. Dr. Jasser is a Muslim who believes in American values, which makes him rare. He is also trying to organize like-minded Muslims to speak out against Radical Islam, the Islamists. That makes him very rare indeed. Please show him some support. Moderate Muslim Americans are essential to our personal safety. Only they can spot a radical in our midst. If they are not encouraged to “drop a dime” we are in for some ugly times.
Thank You Dr. Jasser
Liberty or Death
I like to beat up on Rummy as much as the next guy, but on his last day it is time to recognize his accomplishments and stop the beatings. Rummy is not a military war leader. He never pretended to be. He is an administrator and in that capacity he has excelled. He has reorganized the military to a lighter more effective force that will serve this nation well in the war against Jihadists. Having worked in DoD for 32 years, I know how difficult changing the military can be. He has done more than any other Secretary in this regard. For more thoughts go Andrea and Mark’s blogsite.
Thanks Mr. Rumsfeld, your contribution will not fade away.
Liberty or Death
Thursday, December 14, 2006
Bush needs to connect the dots in his last two years and do something good for the country. At the same time he needs to control the agenda of the liberal drive by media. Liberty or Death you must be on drugs how can the media that hate Bush control their agenda, especially when the new congress will put him in a political coffin? 2 simple things. Learn from the left. The left control the media in two ways. Hit their hot buttons, which are usually the same as the left and more importantly be outrageous. Yea, but they will catch on and cut him off. That brings us to the second simple thing, Presidential Executive Orders. Ah, remind me what are those? It is document providing a direct order to a part of the Executive Branch. It must be obeyed. Ignoring a direct order from your boss is insubordination. Those of us who have worked in civil service as supervisors know that it is impossible to fire someone who is incompetent, but it is very easy to fire someone on ethics violations and insubordination. Well ok, but what are the rules? Isn’t the power of the president very limited? Congress makes the laws you know and the president cannot make laws. True but he can interpret the laws and provide orders where no law exists. Read Wiki for a more complete explanation. He can also repeal previous president’s orders.
So how has Bush used this power? He has issued 209 so far, on a pace to exceed Clintons 263. Want to see them all. Go to the Federal Registry. Remember any? Nope, me neither. Remember Clinton aiding North Korea’s nuclear program? EO 12997. Clinton issued 29 Executive orders restricting use of land in behalf of the environment. How many have been revoked by Bush? None. Yikes, a closet tree hugger! When Hillary becomes president you can be certain she will revoke the executive orders of every conservative president.
The power of Executive Orders is limited, but in the history of the presidency only 2 have been overturned, and they were obvious. So what should Bush do? First he should revoke every executive order a liberal president issued. This will start the media firestorm. Second he should issue orders directing regulatory agencies how to interpret congressional laws that have killed the building of nuclear power plants and oil refineries. One example. In fact he should issue orders interpreting every law congress has passed that create unnecessary paperwork for American business. This will be seen as outrageous by congress. Tuff. Force them to override his order. A new law that he can veto. Good luck getting 67% of the house to overturn the veto.
What else should he do? Issue executive orders that touch every hot button of the left and the media. Ensure they are conservative and well thought out. The media and the left will go crazy. When they do be bolder, issue orders that will eventually be overturned by the Supremes. So what, it will take them forever. Remember the important thing is to control public discourse. The media has one Achilles heal, time. You can only cram so much in a 24-hour period and prime time, when America is listening is very short. Go on the offensive. Make conservative issue reality. Force the left and media to defend stupid leftist positions. In essence control the agenda the American public hears. Every hour on a subject Bush cares about is an hour that cannot be devoted to liberal issues.
Imagine an American president controlling the agenda of the liberal press and more importantly getting his message to the American people in prime time. This is real power. It has always been there for the taking. All you need is guts.
Liberty or Death
Wednesday, December 13, 2006
In this era of the Islamic Jihadi who intentionally use their own people as human shields, refuse to wear uniforms, torture any westerner the can get their hands on, it is past due to revisit the Geneva Convention or the Geneva Accords? The more you look, the more you realize the conventions were intended for a different time and for warfare fought by nations. Most people in the US believe the Geneva Conventions are a fixed set of rules for the conduct of war. Nothing could be further from the truth. Beginning in 1863, there have been four significant conventions and new protocols as late as 2005. Then you have those who signed and whether the conventions bind nations at war with non-signature nations. You can also sign with stated caveats. A second significant set of conventions called the Hague conventions beginning in 1907 established more rules on the conduct of war. Again some nations signed and some nations did not. Some had caveats. Some Hague articles were adopted into later Geneva conventions. All these conventions were germinated by atrocities and responsible nations attempting to address these atrocities with international regulations. There are also many other lesser-known conventions and treaties that have those who signed and those who did not. What consists today is a massively confusing and sometimes contradictory set of rules that can only be sorted out by lawyers. The American people have no idea what laws apply to us and in what circumstances. We rely on our politicians and the media to sort them out for us. A very risky thing to do.
These rules are more than guides. There are very serious penalties to violators, who are charged with war crimes. For example Slobodan Milošević found himself in clutches of a war crimes tribunal.
What are some common themes in the rules. First they govern signature nations. Look at the dates. What were the cultues of the world 120 years ago? The world was dominated nations. Warfare was conducted by nations. What else is there? Morality. Our nation expresses this culutural characterictic in a term called a just war. How extreme can these views be, see this site. Its severe restrictions are not legally binding but have an impact on the mindset and resolve of the American people. The rules of Geneva, Hague and just war weigh heavily on the rules of engagement that military is controlled by and held accountable. Violations are punishable offenses.
Jump forward to 2006, what is the nature of enemy combatants that threaten the lives of US citizens. Iraq and Iran are exceptions. A hostile Iraq no longer exists, it has been temporarily replaced with a domacracy that we support. But we are still fighting in Iraq. If not Iraqis who are we fighting? We are on record as fighting foreign insurgents, non Iraqis that are not nations and not even under the banner of recognized terror groups except Al-Qaeda.
But future conflicts will require the US to respond to more and more attacks by unrecogonized groups and groups that are recognized as terroists. They don’t recognize any nation, fly no flag but are definitely dependent on nations and private benefactors for money, arms, training and cover (travel documents). Our good friend Hugo is mass producing legal documents for any and all thugs who want to attack American citizens. Techically these would combatants treated as criminals if they were US citizens, which they are not.
But what about the culture of those who wish us dead? When someone wants you dead you had better understand who they are and what motivates them. Bush now calls them Islamofacists, a non legal term with regard to the Geneva convention. Also the term has no meaning in Islam. In fact Islamic groups, organizations, state sponsors and Geneva non signiture nations reside in a legal vacuum.
So lets all take a short course in all thing Islam. Islam is a religion, a monotheistic religion based upon the teachings of Muhammad, a 7th century Arab religious and political figure. It is the second-largest religion in the world today, with an estimated 1.4 billion adherents, known as Muslims. Today, Muslims may be found throughout the world, particularly in the Middle East, North Africa, and South and Central Asia. Only about 20 percent of Muslims originate from Arab countries. Islam is the second largest religion in many European countries, such as France, which has the largest Muslim population in Western Europe, and the United Kingdom.
Islamism is a set of political ideologies that hold that Islam is not only a religion, but also a political system that governs the legal, economic and social imperatives of the state according to its interpretation of Islamic Law. For Islamists, the sharia has absolute priority over democracy and universal human rights.” Wahhabism is an Orthodox Islamic movement, named after Muhammad ibn Abd al Wahhab (1703–1792). It is the dominant form of Islam in Saudi Arabia, Qatar and recently Western Iraq. It is now intellectual obsolete and has been replaced with Salafism. Salafis view the first three generations of Muslims, who are Muhammad's companions, and the two succeeding generations after them, the Tabi‘in and the Taba‘ at-Tabi‘in, as examples of how Islam should be practiced. This principle is derived from the following hadith by Muhammad: The people of my generation are the best, then those who follow them, and then whose who follow the latter (i.e. the first three generations of Muslims).
The closest analogy to Christians and Jews is Orthodoxy or the extreme groups within these cultures. So far we have Islam that dominates the culture of the Middle East. We also know that Islam is not monolithic. Like Christianity a great schism occurred early on resulting in Sunnis and Shiites. The word Sunni comes from the word sunna, which means the tradition of the Prophet of Islam, Muhammad. They represent the branch of Islam that came through the caliphate, which started with Abu Bakr.
Shiites Shi'a believe that at any given time, a certain leader titled The Imam of Time, is the Guardian of all Muslims.
A Twelver Shi'a Imam is a Guide in all religious and worldly matters, and is believed to have been Divinely appointed. A Sunni Caliph, on the other hand, is appointed by a part of the community, and is mostly a temporal ruler, where the Quran is taken to be the only authority in all matters pertaining to religion.
Within Shi'ism, there are various sects that differ over the number of Imams, or path of succession. The issue of who is the rightful Imam has led to the growth of 3 sects within Shi'ism including: Twelvers, Ismailis & Zaidis. Twelver Shi'as cite various references from the Qur'an and reports, or Hadith, from Muhammad and the twelve Shi'a Imams with regards to the reappearance of Muhammad al-Mahdi who will, in accordance with God's command, bring justice and peace to the world by establishing Islam throughout the world. The prophet Muhammad is reported to have said:
What we have is a culture that is definitely not monolithic. Only 18% of Muslims live in the Arab world. 15% of all Muslims are Shi'a. Today there are an estimated 130 and 190 million Shi'a Muslims (including Twelvers, Ismailis, Zaydis) throughout the world, about three quarters of whom reside in Iran, Pakistan, Iraq, Afghanistan and India. Were it not for Radical Imams, the twelvers highjacking Iran there would be no Muslim nation seeking our demise. Approximately 80% of Shi'a are Twelvers and they are the largest Shi'a school of thought, predominant in Azerbaijan, Iran, Iraq, Lebanon and Bahrain."During the last times, my people will be afflicted with terrible and unprecedented calamities and misfortunes from their rulers, so much so that this vast earth will appear small to them. Persecution and injustice will engulf the earth. The believers will find no shelter to seek refuge from these tortures and injustices. At such a time, God will raise from my progeny a man who will establish peace and justice on this earth in the same way as it had been filled with injustice and distress."
Shi'as believe that when Muhammad al-Mahdi will reappear, the prophet Jesus will also reappear and that he will pray behind al-Mahdi. Sunni Muslims do not consider Muhammad al-Mahdi to be the Mahdi. Many scholars even doubt that he existed at all and hold that the 11th Imam died at the age of 28 years without leaving any offspring, though some other believe that he existed. 
How strong is the rift between Sunnis and Shia.
“On the other hand, similar fatwas have not been issued by many prominent Sunni scholars or universities. A number of contemporary Sunni scholars such as Shaykh Dr Khaalid ibn ‘Ali al-Mushayqih (who released a fatwa regarding praying with the Shi'a) maintain that Shi'a are not considered as Muslims, unless they deny certain beliefs found in a number of Shi'a hadith books like al-kafi that are accepted by the majority of twelver Shi'a.”
Finally we come to the concept of Jihad, a very misunderstood term. What is known:
1. Ibn Rushd, in his Muqaddimāt, divides Jihad into four kinds:
"Jihad by the heart; Jihad by the tongue; Jihad by the hand and Jihad by the sword." He defines "Jihad by the tongue" as "to commend good conduct and forbid the wrong, like the type of Jihad Allah (swt) ordered us to fulfill against the hypocrites in His Words, “O Prophet! Strive hard against the unbelievers and the hypocrites” (Qur'an 9:73). So the Prophet (s) strove against the unbelievers by sword and against the hypocrites by tongue
Jihad by the sword (jihad bis saif) refers to qital fi sabilillah (armed fighting in the way of God, or holy war), the most common usage by Salafi Muslims and offshoots of the Muslim Brotherhood.
Also known as Physical Jihad: This relates to the use of physical force in defense of Muslims against oppression and transgression by the enemies of Allah, Islam and Muslims. Allah commands that Muslims lead peaceful lives and not transgress against anyone. If they are persecuted and oppressed, the Qur'an recommends that they migrate to a more peaceful and tolerant land:
"Lo! Those who believe, and those who emigrate (to escape persecution) and strive (Jahadu) in the way of Allah, these have hope of Allah's mercy..." (2:218). If relocation is not possible, then Allah also requires Muslims to defend themselves against oppression by "fighting against those who fight against us." 2 The Qur'an states: "To those against whom war is made, permission is given [to defend themselves], because they are wronged - and verily, Allah is Most Powerful to give them victory." (22:39) 
2. Islamic scholars agree that Jihad should not be undertaken to gratify one’s whims nor to obtain wealth and riches. Many also consider that it must also not be undertaken to conquer territories and rule them or to acquire fame or to appease the emotions of communal support, partisanship and animosity. On the contrary, it should be undertaken only and only for the cause of Allah as is evident from the words. As in Qur'an:
Those who believe, fight in the cause of Allah, and those who disbelieve, fight in the cause of Satan. So fight you against the friends of Satan. Ever feeble indeed is the plot of Satan
3. The Salafi jihadist movement has attracted rootless and or committed internationalist militants. They fight for the jihad, seeking to re-create the Muslim ummah and shariat to build an Islamic community. Simultaneously conservatives and radical, they form a global network that has attracted Muslims from around the world to fight jihad in Kashmir, Bosnia, Chechnya, Afghanistan, and the Philippines. The salafi-jihadist movement in Central Asia and the Caucasus is more localized -- an expression of identity in areas such as Ferghana, villages in Daghestan, and upper Gharm valley. In Central Asia, the term "Wahabi" refers to fundamentalists who come from Pakistan or Afghanistan, but they are not necessarily a political movement. For example, Wahabis in Tajikistan do not recognize themselves as a political alignment. However, most Central Asian regimes use the term Wahabi more broadly to describe Islamic religious movements outside the states' control.
It is important to distinguish between the following groups, thought of (perhaps) as concentric circles or from the most extreme to the least:
· "Jihadist Salafis" - such as the followers of al-Qaeda and like-minded local groups;
· "Salafis" - those who believe that the imitation of the behavior of the Salaf-us-Saliheen (Prophet's Companion's Followers, and those who goes after them) should be the basis of the social order,
· "Islamists" - a still broader category,which includes anyone who thinks that the precepts of Islam - however interpreted - should be fundamental to the political and social order; and,
· "Discontented Muslims" - people who identify themselves as Muslims,and who are unhappy with their life prospects, with the justice of their societies,and/or with the state of the wider world
What else do we need to know. We had all better know who Hamas and Hezbollah are since they have become well organized, trained and equiped by Iran and Hezbollah acquitted themselves very well against Israel.
Hamas (Arabic: حركة حماس; acronym: Arabic: حركة المقاومة الاسلامية, or Harakat al-Muqawama al-Islamiyya or "Islamic Resistance Movement"; the Arabic acronym means "zeal") is a Palestinian Sunni Islamist organization that currently (since January 2006) forms the majority party of the Palestinian National Authority.
Hezbollah (Arabic: حزب الله ḥizb-allāh, meaning "party of God") is a Shi'a Islamist militant and political organization based in Lebanon. It follows a distinct version of Islamic Shia ideology developed by Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, leader of the Islamic Revolution in Iran.
Hezbollah began to take shape during the 1982 Lebanon War; on February 16, 1985 Sheik Ibrahim al-Amin publicly declared the group's manifesto, which included three goals:
· Eradication of Western imperialism in Lebanon,
· Transformation of Lebanon's multi-confessional state into an Islamic state,
· Complete destruction of the state of Israel.[
Hezbollah was largely formed with the aid of the Ayatollah Khomeini's followers in the early eighties in order to spread Islamic revolution and follows a distinct version of Islamic Shi'a ideology (“Willayat Al-Faqih”) developed by Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, leader of the Islamic Revolution in Iran.
Is there anyone who believes the Genava and Hague accords apply to to conflict between western cultures and Islamic cultures? I use culture vs nations because all the middle east arab Islamic nations are secular, except for Iran. Our enemies are Non nations, a mixture of Orthodox and moderate adherents, using suicide bombers as a tool against civilians. One thing it is not is clash between nations. It is a clash between cultures. Why did Khomeni choose to call Israel the little satan and the US the Great Satan. After reading the above you should be able to answer that youself.
Bush has a golden opportunity to Write a treaty that addresses the conduct of hostilities between cultures. I would invite everyone to Amman Jordan to develop new rules that both cultures will accept. If that is a blank sheet of paper, so be it. The west can write their own and sign them. The rules can never be the same, our cultures are miles apart. Do Islamic have a set of rules for war? Yes. See this site. A few are worth listing:
1. Sunni muslims believe that jihad can be declared by a political leader with the sanction of religious authorities, however the lack of such a central authority has created problems with the general acceptance of these declarations. The Shia hold that only a just Imam can declare jihad because he is infallible and will properly guide and ensure it's justness.
2. Javed Ahmed Ghamidi writes in his book Mizan that after Muhammad and his Companions, there is no concept in Islam obliging Muslims to wage war for propagation or implementation of Islam. The only valid basis for Jihad through arms is to end oppression when all other measures have failed. Islam only allows Jihad to be conducted by a Government with at least half the power of the enemy. Some Islamic scholars consider the later command only for a particular time.
4. The 20th Century Muslim scholar, Sayyid Abul Ala Maududi writes, "...the exegetists and jurists have drawn the principle that those who are non-combatants should not be killed during or after a war."
"'No prisoner should be put to the sword' is a very clear and unequivocal instruction given by the Prophet...'The Prophet has prohibited the killing of anyone who is tied or is in captivity.'"
5. From the hadith:
· "You are neither hard-hearted nor of fierce character, nor one who shouts in the markets. You do not return evil for evil, but excuse and forgive." - Bukhari, Volume 6, Book 60, Number 362
· "Do not kill any old person, any child or any woman" (Abu Dawud).
· "Do not kill the monks in monasteries" or "Do not kill the people who are sitting in places of worship" (Musnad of Ibn Hanbal).
Islam expressly prohibits the killing of non-combatants, civilian women, children and the elderly, during war. The Quran states "make (them) prisoners, and afterwards either set them free as a favor or let them ransom (themselves) until the war terminates" (Qur'an 47:4). A discussion of the Islamic treatment of enemy prisoners of war can be found below.
7. Declaration of war
Islam prohibits surprise attacks and invasions. The Quran states,
If thou fearest treachery from any group, throw back (their covenant) to them, (so as to be) on equal terms: for Allah loveth not the treacherous. 8:58
This verse is interpreted to mean that Muslims must make a proper declaration of war prior to taking military action against trangressing enemies. This rule is not binding if the adversary has already started the war.
Furthermore, the Quran recounts the declaration of war of Muhammad to the pagans,
(This is a declaration of) immunity by Allah and His Messenger towards those of the idolaters with whom you made an agreement.
So go about in the land for four months and know that you cannot weaken Allah and that Allah will bring disgrace to the unbelievers. (Quran 9:1-2)
Muslim scholars note that this verse expressly gives the enemies of Muhammad the time period of four months to reconsider their position and negotiate. Muslims are prohibited from opening hostilities without exhausting possibilites for peace.
We are not going to use suicide bombers. But there can be reciprocity. That if you insist on suicide bombers we can use xxxxx. If western civilians are legitmate targets then Westerners need not be confined to surgical methods to separate Islamic combatants from true civilians.
We have two years to create this accord. Or do we? Was the Iranian president two letters to Americans, one to the people the other to the government our 4 month warning? Baring a war in 4 months, when we leave Iraq absolute chaos will errupt.
These accords will be the greatest legacy any president can leave his successor, to remove the shackles of the obsolete accords from both our military and the moral clarity of the American and Western people.
Liberty or Death
Monday, December 11, 2006
Holy moley Batman, or should I say holy bat crap. I seems we have been looking up the wrong rear ends for green house gases. Just when the wacos have us convinced that it is not the termites, but gas-guzzling SUVs that are destroying the environment along comes two studies that point us in another direction. So whose exhaust is the culprit now? After studying the exhaust systems of cows and humans, The Independent posted two articles giving us the real poop. Cows are clearly the main culprits, “Livestock are responsible for 18 per cent of the greenhouse gases that cause global warming, more than cars, planes and all other forms of transport put together.” “Livestock also produces more than 100 other polluting gases, including more than two-thirds of the world's emissions of ammonia, one of the main causes of acid rain.” “And their wind and manure emit more than one third of emissions of another gas, methane, which warms the world 20 times faster than carbon dioxide.” Yikes, batboy get your calculator 18% of polluting gases. That means that CO2 is only part of the other 82%. Just for simplicity we will say it is all of 82% and forget that nasty ammonia. Being an expert on bats I can speak with authority about birds that produce crap that is very rich in ammonia. I will stack up bird manure to cow pies any day. But I forgot farts. Do birds fart? What about insects? They may make small poops but there are trillions and trillions of them. I will bet my bat mobile on termites. Wild bears? We obviously need to study crap more. These two articles just scratch the surface, or should I say rake the muck. Muck? Gosh, there are a lot of horses too.
Thank God the Bat mobile and bats are still the good guys. But on the same day the Independent provided some clarity of the human contribution by measuring British citizens, “A study by the government-funded Carbon Trust puts the annual carbon footprint of the average Briton at 10.92 tons of CO2 - roughly half of the 19 tons of CO2 produced each year by the average American. You know this is a creditable study because the Americans are properly vilified for creating twice the problem. We have the most cows too. The research also demonstrates that our leisure and recreation pursuits - activities as diverse as watching a football match or taking a trip to the seaside - account for most of our emissions, rather than a lack of insulation or a predilection for 4x4 cars.” In fact commuting contributes only half of horsing around.
Bats, cows, birds, insects and humans horsing around is there anything else? Yup, misguided Ebola bacteria. No credit to Ecoli who are helping to kill humans eating spinach and horsing around at Taco Bell. The Independent is alarmed at Ebola wiping out gorillas. These pesky murders have got the wrong animal; it’s the cows stupid, not gorillas. Wonder if Ebola and Ecoli produce crap? Has anybody measured the amount of crap they produce? We won’t know if they are going to save the planet or destroy it if we can’t measure their crap. What about farts, do they fart?
Liberty or Death
Saturday, December 09, 2006
Thursday on CPR The co-host Mark Vance asked on Pearl Harbor remembrance day whether this country had the morale clarity to ever fight a an all out war like World War II? He correctly pegged the right problem, “it is a matter of morale clarity”. His concern is whether this country has the morale fortitude to endure heavy casualties for 5 years and see a conflict through to victory. His concern is well stated by Doug Giles. A good question on the day that Baker released his cut and run study report, followed by a whole hour of Meet the Press 10 December; half devoted to Baker and Hamiton explain why their report was bipartisan mush and foreign policy experts giving us the real story. Read the whole transcript. But a complex question for anyone to answer in advance, because no one can get into the minds of 300M people real time. So what is moral clarity? It is the collective mindset of the people, both civilian and military. Where does that come from? It comes from a nations culture, the righteousness of the cause and the victory conditions defined by the leader. You should not accept that on faith. So where is the proof? Before I answer that, we first need to understand how culture reacts to war. Culture affects the 3 psychological factors of war, winning and losing, casualties and enemy civilian casualties. These values can be measured and can be manipulated by the press and psychological warfare.
Lets begin with the topic of the day, World War II. American moral clarity was never tested. America supplied the economic might and the British Empire and especially the Russians supplied the bodies. Because our population was small compared to its awesome economic power this made good sense. America tried to use high tech to defeat Germany and Japan. It worked on Japan but not Germany. Germany was high tech too. We lost only 500,000 dead compared to many millions lost by the other combatants. Of course when the fighting got tough France and Italy surrendered. But it was a fight to the death for Japan and Germany. We tried to bomb Germany into oblivion, but the accuracy of bombing was miserable until 1945. The best we could do was hit a city. In 1940-1941 the British could not even do that. Yes, they missed entire cities. How did it end? Germany literally ran out of manpower. They could not replace their casualties as early as 1944. Britain was also decommissioning divisions to fill the vacancies in remaining units. American manpower was only tested, but not even close to exhausted. However, we did not have the population to win a war of attrition against Germany or Japan. The Russians did. All we need to do was supply the war material, America’s strength.
Germany did not lose the will to fight until Hitler killed himself. But from 44 on the German Army and people new the war was lost. Japan was defeated by high tech. It was the Navy and Army Air Force that defeated Japan. Most people believe Japan surrendered because we annihilated their military forces. Not even close. We barely scratched their ground forces. Except for American stupidity, no American or Japanese ground forces would have been lost after 1942. In early 1942 two diverse Pacific war plans were submitted to FDR. One by Dug out Doug, the loser of the Philippines, which detailed slugging it out island by island all the way to Japan. The navy plan was to wait to build a massive fleet, then by pass the defended Islands and destroy the Japanese navy and in particular it’s merchant fleet. Japan was extremely vulnerable without a massive navy. To make matters worse they chose a navy of capital ships when their lives literally depended on merchant ships and escorts. Japan had to take 100’s of Islands all over the Pacific for raw materials and move massive amounts of raw materials from Korea and China across water to replace their war losses. Worse they did not have the food to feed their population. Japan is a nation of Islands. Not all those Islands were self sufficient in food production. They required massive inter-island food transfers to keep from starving. FDR for political reasons chose Dug out Doug’s plan. So we slugged it out island-by-island including the Philippines all the way to Okinawa where our Japanese home Island invasion force was being assembled. But while the navy supported Doug’s plan it also pursued its own plan. The Japanese navy was sunk and in particular all of their merchant fleet. The navy even sunk the fishing boats and all of the inter-island junks. Wooden ships. Without fish and rice Japan was facing starvation. Still Japan kept its will to fight. Their basically intact Army was moved to the home Islands where it would have inflicted an estimated million American casualties had we invaded.
Fortunately, FDR and his unconditional surrender policy died. Truman was left with the decision to use the atomic bomb. Politically he had no choice. People think he agonized over the decision. It was a no-brainer. He correctly reasoned that the American people would have lynched him after the war when they found out we had the bomb that could end the war and did not use it but sent 1M Americans to their death. Bombs away. Japan surrenders. Nope. Even fewer people know that the 2 atomic bombs did not end the war. Diplomacy won it. A back channel message that was dropped from the Potsdam Declaration Article 12, from Truman to the Emperor ended the war. Well that, and the fact that the Russians declared war. We offered that the Emperor could remain the symbolic head of Japan if he surrendered. Given that his people faced starvation and he knew had a way to save his hide and save face for Japan, he ordered Japan’s surrender. Bottom line, the contrast in cultures in WW II and their consequences on conducting war could not be starker.
What were lessons to be learned from WW II? The first lesson is that culture is a very significant factor in how a people fight, how they perceive casualties, both their own and the enemies and what their reaction is to winning and losing. How these factors affect morale clarity or the will to fight is critical. The contrast between Germany and Japan vs. France and Italy could not be starker. France and Italy surrendered as soon as things started going bad. Japan murdered civilians and tortured prisoners and committed untold atrocities. But every man was willing to die for the Emperor a deity, and those who had the chance, did. For the first time ever we faced people willing to strap on bombs and fly them into our ships. Even though they were losing, they were prepared to fight to the last man.
But what do we know about the WW II American culture? Before the war we were far more isolationist then we are today. But once American blood was spilled, especially in such a cowardly way, Americans accepted thousands of our own military casualties and the death of every German and Japanese including millions of civilian casualties in both Germany and Japan. But given a choice between 1M American GI deaths and the starvation of the Japanese people, the American people would have kissed the Japanese civilization good bye. One other extremely important lesson learned is that America has to be wining. Where as Germany and Japan will fight a losing war to the bitter end, and France and Italy will fold quickly, But America is none of these cultures. The Patton speech was right on the money:
“Men, this stuff that some sources sling around about America wanting out of this war, not wanting to fight, is a crock of bullshit. Americans love to fight, traditionally. All real Americans love the sting and clash of battle...Americans play to win all of the time. I wouldn't give a hoot in hell for a man who lost and laughed. That's why Americans have never lost nor will ever lose a war; for the very idea of losing is hateful to an American.”
Patton was talking about the ability of the American military to win battles, not it’s civilian leadership. Has our culture changed today? Yes and no, winning is still everything today. But the keywords in Patton’s speech are not just win but, “play to win” America will fight if we are playing to win. America expects not only to win but must see itself winning. But what about American and enemy civilian casualties? America’s reaction to massive casualties which could occur in a large scale nuclear exchange has never been tested. The American people did not give a damn about enemy civilians during WW II. If enemy civilians died in the fighting, it was unavoidable. No American general resigned in protest or was court marshaled for the firebombing of civilians in Dresden and Tokyo.
And today? Has America changed? The American people are still willing to accept significant American casualties. Huh? Remember the Military predictions before the 1991 Iraq war. 40,000 dead. Did the American people say no? Nope. They perceived that we were there to win, had a righteous cause and clearly defined victory conditions. Moral clarity. In Vietnam The American people suffered 50,000 casualties, but at a very high price. The Army was close to mutiny; the American people were in the streets in the millions. What lessons did the American people learn from this war? Did the American people and our military perceive that we were playing to win? No. Did we have clear obtainable victory conditions? No. And for the first time Americans saw enemy civilians dying in living color, right in their living rooms every night.
So what do we know so far about the American culture? We love/are willing to fight, we must play to win and we are willing to accept American casualties. Enemy civilian casualties are still a complex thing. We have had two contrasting examples.
After Iraq I and Iraq II, America saw high tech quick victory was feasible. We could win and win big. We never needed American casualties like WW II, Korea or Vietnam. What about enemy civilian casualties? Did Vietnam sour the American people? Yes and No. In Iraq I there were 1000s of military and civilian Iraqi casualties. Americas threw a victory parade. In Iraq II more enemy civilians and less American casualties occurred during the first 21 days in Iraq than all of the next 3 years. America cheered up till the final historic moment when Saddam’s statue was pulled down despite 1000s of civilian casualties. Had we pulled out and gone home the next day, Iraq would view us as liberators. Bush would have been a hero. Americans would have thrown another victory parade. Maybe. Enemy civilian casualties like American military casualties are a complex issue. Complex in that they are not independent of the other factors. Based on the last two wars it appears that American will accept enemy civilian casualties in the “shock and Awe” phase, but not in the occupation phase.
So what is souring the American people’s will to fight in the war in Iraq today? Is it American body bags? No. If it is American resolve then what undermines American resolve? Do Americans no longer want to fight? One hundred and forty years ago, British philosopher John Stuart Mill (1806-1873) wrote:
“War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things: the decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling which thinks that nothing is worth a war, is much worse... A man who has nothing which he is willing to fight for, nothing which he cares more about than he does about his personal safety, is a miserable creature who has no chance of being free, unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself.”
Fortunately for America our military is still recruiting talented courageous people. In fact our military is the finest and smartest in history. I have a cousin who graduated from college and volunteered to be an officer in the Marine Corps this summer. He was turned down because his grade point average was too low. The same marines that are taking the brunt of the casualties In Iraq can pick and choose among America’s finest young people. He is now going to Paris Island as an enlisted marine. Go to Bethesda and Walter Reed, our guys and gals are strapping on artificial limbs and are pleading to go back. In spite of our failure in Iraq there are more than enough high quality young to fill the ranks of the military. If we have enough fighters where is the problem? It has to be the American people.
Lets check our metrics. Americans feel a war must be just. After 9-11 that box was checked. After 21 days in Iraq our military won or did they? We achieved the victory conditions, “Saddam gone and the WMD gone” that Bush announced before the war but we did not crush the enemy’s will to fight. We thought we did. Had we gone home then we could claim we crushed the enemy’s will to fight. What happened? Bush added a new strategic goal mid course, that being to establish a stable Democracy in all of Iraq. An iffy and long term goal. By trying to achieve this surprise goal he exposed the fact that we had not crushed the enemies will to fight. It has now been three years of our finest going man to man in the streets of Baghdad, while our high tech sits on the sidelines and still no victory in sight.
After Vietnam the American people know a quagmire when they see one. The American people believe the American military can’t win by going toe to toe with the insurgents. We are killing them at a 10 to 1 ratio, but more keep coming. There seems to be an endless supply. There is. Our high tech is sitting on the sidelines because the civilians are no longer part of the enemy but Iraqi citizens Bush promised to protect. Americans can only see endless fighting on the enemy’s home turf and all our high tech neutralized. Americans will never accept that as winning. In fact more than 50% of Americans call it losing. Our New SecDef calls it losing. Ever since we started nation building the American generals seem to be doing everything wrong. We did not have enough troops to pacify Baghdad and secure Iraq’s lengthy borders with hostile nations. The insurgents are still pouring across the borders from all directions. One begins to wonder when Bush informed the generals about nation building? Killing insurgents is much harder than killing Japanese. Both are fanatics who will fight to the death but the insurgents won’t wear uniforms and hide among so called civilians and can only be shot at when they pick up a gun, which is at a time of their choosing. Meanwhile our military ride over IEDs. But what about new goal of a stable democracy in the Middle East? Americans no longer believe that is possible, if they ever did, since they were not consulted before the war. In fact they were deceived. Now we have civil war and an Iraqi government that is talking to Iran. Miliki has not won the hearts and minds of the American people, In fact it is unclear whose side he is own. This war sucks.
Moral clarity of the American people is gone, but it is not that they have given up. They feel betrayed by this president. He has snatched defeat from the jaws of victory by adding a surprise goal and forcing our military to go toe to toe with an unlimited supply of Jihadists for an unspecified amount of time. Bush changed morale clarity to dissolution.
But ask yourself; did Bush ever instill America with morale clarity? After the very confusing 9-11 attack the American people were fighting mad. But more than ever they needed our president to provide us with morale clarity. We knew nothing about the Middle East or Islam, what ever that is. Who was the enemy? What is his culture? How and where should we fight him? What are goals of this enemy? How can we crush his will to kill us? What was Bushes answer? “This is a war on terror”. What and who is that? “Islam, the culture of most of the Middle East is a peaceful religion”. Nothing could be further from the truth. “We need to fight the axis of evil”. What did Iran, Korea and Iraq have to do with 9-11 and suicide bombers? The perps were all Saudis and Al Qaeda. Where was the clarity the American people were seeking in our president’s speech? None. But the American people have since gotten smarter on their own, no thanks to Bush. What has been Bush’s contribution to clarity in the last 5 years? He changed the word terror to Islamofacists. Who ever they are? Bush has not even made that clear. He failed miserably on clarity and attacking Iraq was fuzzy on moral.
What should he have said that would have infused Americans with moral clarity? One 30 second film clip would have galvanized our nation like no other time in history. Arab people dancing in the streets of every country in the Middle East as the World Center Towers fell. There was our enemy. He should have said our enemy is Islamic Jihadists and a rogue government that high jacked Iran. He could have show a fifteen second clip of millions of Iranians shouting “death to America”. What is Islam and what are Jihadists? Bush is yet to tell us. Jihadists are warriors commanded by an Islamic cleric to fight Jihad against a people. What does that mean? It means a fight to the death or submission to Islam. Are they serious? They are more serious than Japan. They value death more than life. Death in Jihad for Allah is rewarded by 70 virgins. The Jihadists won’t give up till we are all dead. Men, women and children. Dead. They have as many people willing to be suicide bombers as the Japanese.
Our troops will soon be coming home. We lost another one. Why? Mark is right, lack of moral clarity. But not because the American people are giving up. Bush failed to provide us with moral clarity, deceived the people on the goal of the war in Iraq and put our troops in a position where they cannot win. After we leave, the Shiites will go after the Sunnis. Iran will increase their aid to the Shiites. Saudi Arabia and Jordan are freaked about the Iranians and will enter the war on the Sunni side. Armageddon begins.
We have the best players in the game and the worst coach. So what do we do? Fire the coach. America will back this team with a new coach and a new game plan. 9-11 was a moral imperative. A major attack against Israel is another moral imperative. Another attack on the US like 9-11 or worse will be another moral imperative. But if the new president makes the correct case for clarity the American people will follow without a new moral imperative.
The new coach will have the opportunity to properly define the enemy, not this axis of evil crap. Our enemy is a loose collection of Jihadists sprinkled in a huge Arab population and one rogue state, Iran that also sponsors two well-organized surrogates in Hezbollah and Hamas. But our enemy requires money that begins with oil but filters through human beings down to the Jihadists. Second the president needs to make it absolutely clear that this fight is to the death. Either they die or we die. Moral clarity. He also needs to clearly define our strategic risks. The foremost risk being that it impossible to defend a free society with open borders from attacks by bad guys in rental trucks who won’t wear uniforms. Second our economy can be ruined by the loss of control of 30 miles of water in the Persian Gulf. Given the total lack of defense the American people would understand we have to have a very aggressive offense, but it must be continually winning. Pound the enemy continuously, never let him go on offense. Use our high tech to the max. It is also impossible to protect the Persian Gulf. So we must embark on a crash program to be independent of Persian Gulf oil in 5 years. If Bush asked for that in 2001 we would already be there. Moral Clarity.
Liberty or Death
Thursday, December 07, 2006
What is wrong with being called American with no qualifier? It is not the callers that demand use of the qualifier; it is the called. The majority were happy to call minorities epithets if they called them anything. The never called a German a German American. They called them Germans. Germans insisted on German American. Although they quickly dropped German because they truly wanted to be just an American like everyone else. Those who continue to insist on being a qualified American are saying that they want their original origin to be recognized as different. They don't want to be like everyone else. They expect special status. Of course they are urged on by the media and the left to insist on this special status. The left have created laws, affirmative action to reward those who want to retain recognition of their minority status. The left do not want everyone to be the same. Special groups can be bribed with government handouts. This goes for the poor as well. Black people are so confused that most believe poor means Black. They don't recognize that of the poor they are a minority. There are more poor whites than blacks. Soon there will be more poor Hispanics than Blacks. The left can exploit these special groups. So they do what they can to keep them content to remain special. Cultural diversity is celebrated as something greater than American. Many really believe that crap. Those that insist on being called African American, and consider Black derogatory fall into this leftist trap. Their foolishness permits opportunists such as Jackson and Farakan to become rich. Jackson's rainbow exploits diversity and Farakan exploits those who want nothing to do with whites.
What does it mean to be an American? Is it citizenship in a nation? Of course not. Is it belief in the constitution and the declaration of independence? No but they were the spark plugs. What truly defines an American from any other person in the world, especially the Europeans that formed our nation, is belief in the American dream. What is that? Wiki definition. My definition. The American dream is that a person regardless of his or her birth status can be anything they want to be. It took the constitution, the declaration of independence and a new country to germinate that belief, but that belief is what truly makes us American. Those who believe this dream see only opportunity in the world. Where others see chains that prevent them from achievement, Americans see obstacles to be overcome. Where some believe that failure is cause for giving up, Americans see failure as lesson to learn from and move on. Americans were the first to dream this dream. It requires self-reliance and hard work. Something that was in abundance in early America. It is a belief that achievement must be taken, and expect nothing to be given.
Leftists by definition do not share in this dream. And they are winning. On the Glenn Beck show 7 Dec Glenn stated "only 50% now believe in the American Dream. I am not talking about Democrats or liberals but only those exploit the American Dream for their personal success but do not want anyone else to dream that dream. They believe in "Animal Farm" where they are in power over the masses. For Animal Farm to work, you need masses, most of the poor and special minorities with hyphenated American names. Those who dream the American Dream want nothing to do with labels or handouts. Those who do not; share the Animal House dream are more than willing to accept handouts and privileges based on minority status. The left will do anything to keep these people believing in the Animal House dream. That is why they use big government to engender dependency. That is why they invented political correctness, which really means there is only one right answer and that answer can only be provided by the left. Prosperity is anathema to the left. Prosperous people turn away from the dreams of the left and begin to dream the American Dream. So leftist use every legal means to seize the money of the prosperous and use it to buy the loyalty and dependency of the masses.
America is coming to a critical decision point in its history. America has never been so prosperous. But two other forces are growing even faster, globalization and the invasion of the poor. The left is uniquely poised to seize these opportunities. For the first time in history the left are in charge. They did this by hijacking the Democratic Party and marginalizing the liberals and the moderates. Globalization is the brainchild of large multinational businesses that see national boundaries, customs and laws as impediments to their growth. The left are playing along because it also furthers their goals. Global institutions like the UN are run by the left. How often now do unions get praise from the left? Almost none. They were getting to powerful and were creating a prosperous middle class. They are no longer useful and have been dumped by the left.
The invasion of the poor in massive numbers is overwhelming the historical process of assimilation. The left see this as a golden opportunity to be exploited to achieve Animal House. If this Hispanic invasion can be bought by entitlements then the left can own their votes. Blacks already vote 90% Democratic and therefore left. Hispanics voted 54% Democratic in 2004 and 67% in 2006. Amnesty will create 35M-50M new poor voters in 3 years. These people will vote 90% Democratic thereby further empowering the left who own the Democratic Party. The magic number is 67%. With 67% the left can change any law they wish. With 75% they can change the constitution to further the Animal House Dream.
The Globalists don't care about political ideology their wealth and power is global. If the left are stupid enough to try and seize the US Globalists wealth then they will flee. When this happens the group that pays 90% of the money (taxes) that the left uses to buy loyalty and dependency will be gone. At that point entitlement programs will go broke, including social security. The left will seize the wealth of the working rich, the professionals. But it won't be enough; our economy will collapse.
How can this be? Athenian democracy collapsed when the majority 51%, realized they could vote themselves anything they wanted and make the 49% pay. Our founding fathers realized this fault and raised the magic number to 67% for laws, 75% for constitutional changes. Not 75% of the people but 75% of the states. Interesting the Hispanic invasion is currently affecting red states, so 75% will not be an impossible number.
What can disrupt this tidal wave? Only one thing; state’s rights. Towns, cities and states are inacting their own immigration laws. The left and their action wing the ACLU vehemently oppose this. The Supreme Court will shortly decide the fate of America.
How could Republicans who had control for the past 6 years have let this happen? First they were arrogant and saw the left as a negative for the Democratic Party. They were wrong. Secondly Rhinos are Globalists. The Rhinos controlled the senate and are still there. It was conservatives who lost in 2006.
Liberty or Death
Monday, December 04, 2006
I have posted 3 Comments from below. My reply is at bottom of the three.
1. Liberal Percy has left a new comment on your post "12/04/2006 03:40:00 AM":
What is ridiculous, Mr. Death, is the idea that all problems would be solved if we just offed a few leaders - including elected ones like Chavez. Would the US go away if OBL succeeded in offing the top 5-10 US leaders?
And you think something like this could be kept quiet? Asteroids? Not even Rush Limbaugh could hawk that one with a straight face - and he makes a living lying.
Consequences? War in Korea, a target on every American overseas, war with half the world and complete disgust from the rest. Bush would be confirming everyone's worst fears about Amercia - and the rest of the world would be right in condemning us.
Sorry, everyone. Mr. Death here isn't on any drugs we could obtain for our pleasure. He's just gone insane all by his little deranged self.
2. Farkington has left a new comment on your post "12/04/2006 03:40:00 AM":
Are you kidding? The Navy is never going to deploy non-nuclear submarine fired missiles that are comparable in size to outgoing strategic weapons.
Because they aren't stupid. A non-nuclear cruise missile looks just like a nuclear one. The Navy is quite aware of this, now you are too.
The Russians would freak out if they spotted a submarine launch, as would many other nuclear powers. Mostly because submarines are second strike weapons, not toys in your personal videogame.
If you want to shove depleted uranium up the collective assholes of everyone on your "do not like" list, that's fine, use surface ships. Just don't suggest a course of action that is absolutely braindead.
You want to know what would destablize South America? Killing all the drug cartel leaders. You know what would destabilize the Middle East? Killing all the Wahhabi clerics & Iranian revolutionary guard leaders.
Creating power vaccuums is a terribly way to conduct foreign policy. Overt acts of war are even worse.
3. Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "12/04/2006 03:40:00 AM": I realize you like the big toys but do you really think it would be a good idea for Mossad to be the brain for our brawn. Israel may be an ally but our nations' international interests come nowhere near overlapping 100% let alone 50%.
Liberty or Death response
OK guys you caught me at a poor attempt at humor. Santa Claus and asteroids are ridiculous. My list of leaders is just a list; my choices were to elicit response. Pick your own list or none at all. I would not kill Kim IL. His worst enemy is himself. When its time to marginalize Korea, the way to do it is to eliminate Kim’s access to foreign cash and goods. If he stops buying off his key supporters, his own generals will do the job and we won’t be to blame. Liberal Percy, the one bunch I would definitely want gone are the Iranian thugs who hijacked a whole country in 1979 and are using its wealth to further personal ambitions that include “wiping Israel of the map”, and “Death to America.” They rule by violence and torture of their own people. They have 200,000 Revolutionary Guards to protect them from their own people and the Army. They are racist. The murders and other abuses they are inflicting on the million Arabs that live along their west coast is a human rights disgrace. The Persians hold all the power, but they are only 51% of the 69M Iranians. The minorities hate the Persians and are punished for it. The Persians have a significant number of young people who don’t remember the Shaw, who use the internet and see how the rest of the world lives and they reject living in the 7th century. Eliminating these theocratic thugs would allow the people of Iran to take their country back.
There are two kernels in my post that I was trying to convey; killing leaders where it would make a difference and the need for a device that is both lethal and has minimal collateral damage. Pick your method; I chose a hypothetical one. The missile obviously does not exist today and there may be more effective ways to do it.
On the other hand you provided some thoughts that are worth debating. I will begin the debate. I don’t believe there is one right answer in human discourse. Also I will let you present your ideas unedited to the readers.
1. Liberal Percy, running around killing all the bad guy leaders whole sale. No. I would be very selective. It would have to make a difference. Your analogy to America or any other free democratic society is weak because leaders in a free society are easily replaced with little disruption and by a process that the people support. There are cases where the leaders rule by force, abuse their own people and those people have no say in their replacements. If they disappeared, the country would be better off. Iran is the best case at the moment.
2. Farkington. Pick your own weapons and methods as long as it arrives within 30 second warning and does very little collateral damage I will use yours. But the use of mothballed SSBNS to launch kinetic missiles is not as far fetched as you say. ICBMs look a likes are launched all the time. The shuttle, satellite launches. Large boosters that use non-air breathing engines have unique thermal signatures that are picked up by spy satellites. Lots of countries launch these boosters on a frequent basis. What keeps the nuclear powers from freaking out, as you say, is handled by protocols established when nuclear missile testing was common place on both sides. In my case, we just notify Putin when there is no time left for him to warn our target. Between the Russians and Americans one missile is not going to freak out anyone. I was careless and implied a simultaneous massive launch. Your right; that would be reckless.
SSBNs vs. surface ships. Not a good trade off. Do SSBN launched missiles and surface launched missiles look different to thermal spy satellites? You can’t launch a 130,000 lb missile from a surface ship unless you built a special ship for it. The SSBNs already exist with nothing to do in mothballs. They are already designed for Tridents. Even though I was musing, I was trying to practical.
I need to separate your concept of destabilizing countries and your examples; they are two different thoughts. There are conditions where destabilization is desirable. Let me start with an obvious extreme. Germany under Hitler was a very stable country before 1 Sept 1939. He pulled his country from depression to prosperity. He eliminated the worst oppressions of the World War I treaty. I will forget the human rights violations against his own people and the use of violence to achieve power. But after Sep of 39 there was no doubt that this very stable country was a serious threat to world peace. Destabilizing 1939 Germany would have been a highly desirable thing to do. Offing the drug cartels would cause no destabilization because when there is billions to be had there is an unlimited supply of thugs to take their place. Wasted effort. But help me to understand how the drug cartels are a stabilizing force? Just because they bring money into their country and hire a bunch of out of work locals? They also bring large-scale crime and corruption of the government. What is the life expectancy of an honest government official in these countries? Less than a year. Is this a desirable stability? Let the government take over the drug trade and eliminate the crime. That would be a more desirable stability for them. I don’t blame other countries for our drug problems. It is our fault.
“Creating a power vacuum is a terrible way to conduct foreign policy”. Maybe not desirable, but in what way is it terrible foreign policy? There are cases when a vacuum and instability would be far preferable. If national leaders are committed to the destruction of other people for their own selfish motives, then by all means disrupt them before they act. Iran has been conducting an undeclared war against Israel through Hezbollah. The rockets that hit Israel and the Israeli ship were provided free of charge from the Iranians. Russia was a supplier as well. Iran is openly arming and training Hamas with the same effective weapons. What has Israel done to Iran, nothing. Do you think that the Iranian leaders are a more stabilizing world force alive or dead? I prefer dead before these wacos have serious nukes.
3. Anonymous. Of course you are correct. But the Semitic Israelis can melt into the Arab populations like no other nation can. I would use them in these circumstances. All we would be asking for is observation and a phone call. Nothing covert. They are doing this already.
I will admit that this post was over the top. The hyperbole was intentional. It began a healthy debate, which was my goal. For the record, I am not a reckless warmonger. I also do not believe in imposing democracy wherever we go. I am a nationalist, but I am a strong believer in non-interference. Leave me alone; I will leave you alone. But when you are a threat to the life and liberty of America I believe in pre-emption. I also believe using the military should be a last option. But when it is the only thing left, use it with overwhelming force and get out. No nation building. Remove or marginalize the threat to America and get out. I have zero imperialistic goals for America. I have zero interest in meddling at all. We do far too much meddling today, and it is by partisan. I would never have attacked Iraq. I would have wacked the Taliban, but I would have pulled all troops out within 6 months. I would pull our entire overseas troops home. Last week a Marine was convicted of rape in Okinawa. Do you think the people of Okinawa like America more because we have troops there?
I welcome your replies.
Liberty or Death
What President Bush wants for Christmas?
A new missile. What you say, we have lots of missiles? Not like this one. Let’s call it the super cruise missile or maybe the decapitator. It will have the same footprint as the Trident II D5 see below:
Trident II D-5 Fleet Ballistic Missile
6,000nm (6,900mi; 11,000km)
Greater than 4,000 nautical miles (4,600 statute miles, or 7,360 km)
1st and 2nd stage burn times are 65 seconds each
3rd stage burn time is 40 seconds
44 feet (13.41 meters)
130,000 pounds (58,500 kg)
This missile will have the flight characteristics of a supersonic cruise, stealth, a new GPS guidance system with 3 foot accuracy, a pop up terminal phase where it goes up to 70-100 thousand feet and come straight down at very high mach. You could swap some of the fuel for warhead mass. We don’t need even half the range. What type of warhead? Certainly not a nuke, not even an explosive warhead at all, but a rod of depleted uranium like our tank rounds. A kinetic round of say 20,000 lbs, maybe 10,000 lbs. I’ll leave it to Santa Claus to pick the right size. Could come in multiple sizes to suit the target. The super cruise would launch from a SSBN (missile submarine) which were designed and do carry the Trident II today. No mods to the subs required. What you say, these SSBNs are needed for our nuclear deterrence? We have treaties with the Russians to limit our fleet! Well Santa knows all, and is aware we are decommissioning 4 SSBNs as we speak, so they have nothing else to do. Since our warhead is kinetic, no boom, no treaty violation. Picture a rod of depleted uranium coming straight down at very high mach and hitting your target with a 3-foot error. Gosh, it would look like and behave just like an asteroid. Only better because depleted uranium is far denser than an iron asteroid. The important thing is that it would be detectable for only 20-30 seconds. Not enough time to escape even if you knew exactly what it was. What would it do to the target? Remember the movie Armageddon? Coming straight down with no explosion it would have minimal collateral damage but could go through hundreds of feet of concrete or rock with devastating results.
What would Bush do with 4 SSBNs loaded with these missiles? Our Islamic enemies are blessed with very charismatic leaders that their loyal followers believe are invincible. These targets, oops I mean leaders have to be somewhere at all times. Who knows where these guys are at any given time. Certainly not the CIA, they did not know where the Chinese embassy was in Yugoslavia when it was on a street map. The Mossad knows. When any of our friends are in their government building or sleeping in their residences the Mossad could give us real time notice. The subs would be parked off shore in international waters, but still be very close to any person in the Middle East. The first salvo would take out the leaders (top 5 –10 guys) of Iran, Syria, Hezbollah, Hamas, and Korea, the leader of Darfor, and a very special guy named Hugo Chavez. Since none of these guys believe in Santa Claus the must think these missiles are punishment from God. Bush could act dumb, almost no acting required. He would offer the vast resources of the US to determine where these asteroids were coming from. Of course Putin and the Chinese would know. We want them to. But why Hugo? First he is a thug who is destroying his country and destabilizing the South America, second we would want all leaders in the world to know that Bush really is a cowboy and no person on earth is safe.
Oh I forgot to tell you the SSBNs could be cleaned up and reloaded. Who is next? Nuclear bomb making facilities, Wahhabi clerics, drug cartel leaders, Iranian revolutionary guard leaders. Pakistani and Chinese nuclear missile silos. The dead leader’s replacements. With two years left on Bush’s term it could be a very long list that Santa could deliver a lump of coal to.
Merry Christmas, not a creature was stirring not even a rat.
Liberty or Death