Category Archives: War

Wages Of War Waged By A ‘Good Country’

Foreign Policy, Iraq, War

As was pointed out in “Where’s America’s Right To Referendum, Secession?,” military intervention by the US is considered a good thing by the Bill-O’Reilly school of “thought,” because the US is “a good country.”

Naturally, the American media are not chronicling the wages of a war waged by their “good country,” but Al Jazeera is. Here’s what Iraqi’s must endure daily thanks to the war waged by Bush (who is surely not a “thug” like Putin):

“According to the United Nations Assistance Mission to Iraq [UNAMI], a total of 703 Iraqis were killed and another 1,381 were injured in February. These figures do not include those killed and injured in Anbar province, where 189 were killed and 550 were injured in Ramadi and 109 were killed and 648 were injured in Fallujah.”

A series of deadly attacks in Iraq have killed about 50 people and injured 80, police officials have said.

In one of Friday’s incidents, an explosive-laden tanker was driven into the federal police headquarters in the village of Injanah, 55km north of Baquba, killing 12 people and wounding five, including the head of the federal police, Brigadier General Raghib al-Umairi, and his assistant.

In Ramadi, the capital of Anbar province, an attack killed 10 people and injured 27.

AFP news agency reported that a suicide bomber blew himself up at a funeral inside a mosque. Anbar has been the scene of protracted fighting between anti-government fighters and security forces, leading to months of bloodshed and the internal displacement of hundreds of thousands of people.

In the Sarha region of Salaheddin, clashes early on Friday led to a series of explosions, including one near an army base, that killed 12 people and injured 13.

In separate incidents, police said gunmen opened fire on an army checkpoint near the city of Samarra, killing two people, while car bombings killed nine and injured 25 in Dibis, a town located near Kirkuk.

Medical officials confirmed the casualties from Friday’s attacks. All officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorised to talk to the media, according to Associated Press news agency.

No one has yet claimed responsibility for the attacks.

MORE.


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Higher Education Is A Hard Row To Ho

Education, Family, Left-Liberalism, Military, Morality, Relatives, Religion, Sex, War

“Higher Education Is A Hard Row To Ho” is the current column, now on WND. An excerpt:

Who’s the bigger prostitute? Sex kitten “Belle Knox,” alias Miriam Weeks, a promising porn star who is studying at Duke University, or her father, Dr. Kevin Weeks, an army doctor who recently returned from a tour of duty in Afghanistan?

“I would support porn over the adventures for the Empire, anytime” is the verdict of libertarian Robert Wenzel, editor at Economic Policy Journal.

Indeed, daddy’s girl is an open book. We know what the 18-year-old does and that she does it for the love of it.

But what does papa Weeks do? Here’s an attempt to sum up his vocation in this season of rhyming against the regime:

Humpty Dumpty was sent to war
Where Humpty Dumpty had a great fall
All the king’s horses and all king Hussein’s men
Asked Dr. Weeks to put Humpty Dumpty together again
And again. And again.

Papa Weeks is in the business of patching up the peons, so as to send them back to the killing fields where they fight for nothing.

At times, the “talents” of GI Joe and GI Ho come together in the theater of war—the Abu Ghraib porn theater starred some sadistic and slutty servicemen and women. However, the pornography of Miriam Weeks is soft core compared to the X-rated pornography of war, in which Dr. Weeks partakes. Furthermore, selling sex for money, in private or to audiences, is voluntary, consensual and violates no rights.

As corrupt as Miriam’s morals are, better to have been a ho for sale than a mercenary for Uncle Sam. …

Read on. The complete column is “Higher Education Is A Hard Row To Ho” now on WND.

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Dumb Dogs of War

Barack Obama, Conservatism, Foreign Policy, Russia, War

“Putin invaded Georgia when George W. Bush was president. Nobody ever accused George W. Bush of being weak or unwilling to use military force.” Them’s fighting words belong to former Defense Secretary Robert Gates. Warbot conservatives want Obama to do something to Putin so as to keep them feeling like the world’s top dogs. Gates was addressing the incongruous nature of the continuous attacks lobbed by the warbots.


Via Fox News Sunday (the only show on Fox News to offer full
transcripts):

WALLACE: You’ve defended President Obama’s handling of the situation this week, but in January you said you thought that President Obama made a big mistake when he set the red line for the use of chemical weapons in Syria. Here’s what you warn. “If you cock the pistol you’ve got to be willing to fire it.” By “cocking the pistol” whether it’s on the red line in Syria or giving asylum to Edward Snowden or other issues. You’re really — and then not firing it, you really don’t think that President Obama has emboldened Putin at all.

GATES: Well, all I would say is – what I was saying earlier in the week was simply that I thought in the middle of a major international crisis, that some of the criticism, domestic criticism of the president ought to be toned down, while he’s trying to handle this crisis. My own view is, after all, Putin invaded Georgia when George W. Bush was president. Nobody ever accused George W. Bush of being weak or unwilling to use military force, so I think Putin is very opportunistic in these arenas. I think that even if — even if we had launched attacks in Syria, even if we weren’t cutting our defense budget, I think Putin saw an opportunity here in Crimea, and he has seized it. You know, the ouster of Yanukovych was a big strategic setback for Putin, and — and I think it’s — it’s testimony to how skillful he is or how agile he is that he’s tried to offset that by the seizure of Crimea and throwing this whole situation into a very different — into a very different light, and I think that –


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Is Henry Kissinger Anti-American Or Simply Smarter Than Some Americans?

Foreign Policy, libertarianism, Neoconservatism, War

“It’s troubling,” laments an Antiwar.com blogger, that [Henry Kissinger] is the voice of moderation” on the Ukraine quagmire.

The writer is responding to an op-ed the former secretary of state penned in the Washington Post, in which Kissinger, the “architect of the destruction of Indochina, and secretary of state to one of America’s most corrupt leaders,” offers … “a balanced analysis” in contrast to the ignorant media rah-rah around him—”arguments that, if uttered on any of the cable news shows, would be condemned as anti-American.”

Kissinger’s analysis is a balanced one, in contrast to much of what we’ve seen. “Public discussion on Ukraine is all about confrontation,” he laments. “Far too often the Ukrainian issue is posed as a showdown: whether Ukraine joins the East or the West. But if Ukraine is to survive and thrive, it must not be either side’s outpost against the other — it should function as a bridge between them.”

The West’s approach to Ukraine has been characterized much like the Russian approach: zero-sum. But, Kissinger advises, “We should seek reconciliation, not the domination of a faction” inside Ukraine.

Kissinger also seems to criticize the superficial and trivial nature of the commentary from pundits and politicians. He says “the demonization of Vladimir Putin is not a policy; it is an alibi for the absence of one.” Furthermore, “the United States needs to avoid treating Russia as an aberrant to be patiently taught rules of conduct established by Washington.”

Kissinger then proposes four suggestions for how to settle the issue in a responsible (not belligerent) manner that prioritizes “how it ends, not how it begins.”

1. Ukraine should have the right to choose freely its economic and political associations, including with Europe.

2. Ukraine should not join NATO, a position I took seven years ago, when it last came up.

3. Ukraine should be free to create any government compatible with the expressed will of its people. Wise Ukrainian leaders would then opt for a policy of reconciliation between the various parts of their country. Internationally, they should pursue a posture comparable to that of Finland. That nation leaves no doubt about its fierce independence and cooperates with the West in most fields but carefully avoids institutional hostility toward Russia.

4. It is incompatible with the rules of the existing world order for Russia to annex Crimea. But it should be possible to put Crimea’s relationship to Ukraine on a less fraught basis. To that end, Russia would recognize Ukraine’s sovereignty over Crimea. Ukraine should reinforce Crimea’s autonomy in elections held in the presence of international observers. The process would include removing any ambiguities about the status of the Black Sea Fleet at Sevastopol.

MORE.

The writer comes close to the truth when he wonders whether “Kissinger has become more reasonable in his old age, or if his tempered approach to the Ukraine crisis is merely an illustration of how degenerate and juvenile our politics has become in the generation that has followed his.”

Whatever Henry Kissinger was and did, the author of “On China,” an in-depth study of “Sino-American relations, reaching even into ancient Chinese history to define [China's] national characteristics,” was neither foolish nor uninformed.

Foolish, uninformed and dangerously arrogant: these qualities sum-up the caliber of pundit and public servant misinforming and misleading Americans today.


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Uncle Sam Aggression Is The Only ‘Good’ Kind Of Aggression

Foreign Policy, Media, Military, Neoconservatism, Russia, War

Unless you are the United States of America, “… you just don’t invade another country on phony pretext in order to assert your interests,” said Secretary of State John Kerry to the chronically incurious David Gregory, on Meet The Press.

OK, Kerry did not disgorge the first 8 words not in quotation marks. But they are implied, given the historical facts. So I added them.

Another correction: Unlike the Russian government, the US government does not do anything that is in the interest of its people—although the think tank industry and the media-military-congressional complex would argue otherwise.

Agree or disagree with him; like it or not, Putin’s goal is “to protect Russian-speaking people in Crimea or other parts of Ukraine.” Which American community was Genghis Bush and B. Hussein protecting when they decimated Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, and the droned-upon countries?

To reiterate the question asked and answered in “The Warmongers: Not Looking Out For Us,” “More than anyone, who benefits when America goes to war? Those who ‘function within the nimbus of great power’ in D.C. and around it—the media-military-congressional-industrial complex.”

You see, the chattering and political classes cannot conceive of greatness outside the state because they are part of the state apparatus and depend on it for status and income. Conversely, individual Americans—who have nothing to gain and only losses to sustain from war—should never conflate their interests with those of the government and its emissaries, who have everything to gain from the great theatre that is war.


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TOP-SECRET TWERKING

BAB's A List, Homeland Security, War

Top-Secret Twerking
By Myron Pauli

From the days of George Washington sneaking up on the Hessians in Trenton, we have harbored military secrets. We have, of course, also maintained a military “to secure these rights,” according to the Declaration of Independence.

And who does America recruit to “secure these rights” – a psychologically messed-up transgendered, 100 lb Welsh weakling named “Chelsea” Manning (Mistake 1). “We” then give this person a beyond-top secret clearance (Mistake 2). Perhaps the security investigators were too busy checking out the security risk caused by the member of my household with a police record – MY CAT!!! (This really happened!!!) – rather than investigate “Chelsea.”

The silliest part is how an Army private downloads 750,000 highly classified documents and gets away with it (Superbig Mistake 3). It is one thing to shoplift a candy bar from a store but this is emptying out the entire supermarket!

But surely the Defense Department learned from Manning – right? NO – apparently a GED high-school dropout named Edward Snowden also removes 2,000,000 beyond-top-secret documents from the NSA with no one the wiser until he heads off to China and outs himself. The government sucks up and stores a trillion words of information per inhabitant of Earth in Utah, but does not bother to protect its own supersecrets.

Rest assured that “privacy is respected.” If Snowden and Manning can just grab Megadocuments, how are we to be assured that Boris Badenov and Fu Manchu are not sitting at the NSA doing the very same on behalf of Putin and Xi?

Many documents are supposed to be “Sensitive, COMPARTMENTED Information.” “Compartmented” means that it should only be available to a extremely limited number of people – yet low-level employees like Snowden and Manning could steal millions of documents. Not only does the government ignore the Constitution but it ignores common-sense security protocols! Even former CIA boss John Deutch kept top secret documents on his internet-accessible home computer. How can these schnooks be trusted with our privacy?

Note that TOP SECRET is defined as information which could cause “exceptionally grave damage” to America. Stolen and released here were 3 million documents. HOW SPECIFICALLY did America suffer from this “exceptionally grave damage”??? Did Godzilla stomp over Maine? Was Iowa sucked up by a sinkhole? Did bubonic plague kill everyone in California? Was Duck Dynasty cancelled? Did employment in the US drop from 65% of adults to 58% ? – (yes – but this was related more to wasting trillions on idiotic wars than Snowden’s leaks)?

According to the news, the Pentagon has come out with an assessment of the 3 million “beyond exceptionally grave damage” incidents that have ruined life in America. Of course, it turns out that the “beyond exceptionally grave damage” is also TOP SECRET – yes, America has been destroyed but don’t tell a soul.

Or is the real scandal that trillions of $$$$ have been spent generating classified documents that are mostly worthless toilet paper, while this country remains utterly ignorant of anything that occurs overseas? That the US winds up funding and building up both sides in wars and pseudo-wars in third-world countries by people who generally hate our guts? That we have politicians who cannot find Niger on a map bloviating about the “evil of Snowden”? That the archived trillion-trillion bytes of searchable database on Americans is far more likely to be abused by paranoid politicians like Nixon, Clinton, Obama, and Christie against domestic political opponents than to sort out minutia between illiterate Taliban goat-herders in Afghanistan?

At best, after Abdul blows up his backpack, we may find that he had earlier been “talking Jihad” with Ishmael and we subsequently kill Ishmael and 50 others at a wedding party proudly announcing that we have killed “Ishmael the potential terrorist,” while forgetting the relatives of the other 50 who are new terrorist recruits.

What America has made is an NSA “Keystone-Kops-Gestapo” that is as inept as it is insidious – sucking up a whirlwind of mostly useless data and the 4th Amendment in the process. While the NSA archives our tweeting and our twerking, let us not forget Benjamin Franklin’s advice: “those who would sacrifice liberty for security deserve neither”. The “exceptionally grave damage” is to our freedoms!

******
Barely a Blog (BAB) contributor Myron Pauli grew up in Sunnyside Queens, went off to college in Cleveland and then spent time in a mental institution in Cambridge MA (MIT) with Benjamin Netanyahu (did not know him), and others until he was released with the “hostages” and Jimmy Carter on January 20, 1981, having defended his dissertation in nuclear physics. Most of the time since, he has worked on infrared sensors, mainly at Naval Research Laboratory in Washington DC. He was NOT named after Ron Paul but is distantly related to physicist Wolftgang Pauli; unfortunately, only the “good looks” were handed down and not the brains. He writes assorted song lyrics and essays reflecting his cynicism and classical liberalism. Click on the “BAB’s A List” category to access the Pauli archive.


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