Vietnam War at 50

My last daily post will be on an event from my past……

As a Viet vet I am always interested in anything pertaining to that war…..oh sorry….police action…….I read that our SecDef has just celebrated the 50th anniversary of that conflict…..

Really?  In 1950 the US started supplying the South Vietnam government with military advisers and in 1962 JFK started increasing the amount of US troops assigned to South Vietnam…..this should have been either the 66th anniversary or the 54th anniversary…..2016 is a bit off.

A horrible war but from all the anguish and death what did we learn from the experience?

Last week Defense Secretary Ashton Carter laid a wreath at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington in commemoration of the “50th anniversary” of that war. The date is confusing, as the war started earlier and ended far later than 1966. But the Vietnam War at 50 commemoration presents a good opportunity to reflect on the […]

Source: Vietnam War at 50: Have We Learned Nothing? – Antiwar.com Original by — Antiwar.com

One last time….What Did We Learn?

One more thing….Dear Bureaucrats— either get it right or shut the f*ck up!

Has NATO Run Its Course?

Its an election year and as usual most GOP candidates have attacked the UN in one fashion or another….they have accused of everything from being ineffective to being the leader of a new world order…..but this year a new attack has been leveled at another of the many international organizations that we are members of….NATO….the North Atlantic Treaty Organization…..

NATO’s essential purpose is to safeguard the freedom and security of its members through political and military means.

POLITICAL – NATO promotes democratic values and encourages consultation and cooperation on defence and security issues to build trust and, in the long run, prevent conflict.

MILITARY – NATO is committed to the peaceful resolution of disputes. If diplomatic efforts fail, it has the military capacity needed to undertake crisis-management operations. These are carried out under Article 5 of the Washington Treaty – NATO’s founding treaty – or under a UN mandate, alone or in cooperation with other countries and international organizations.

But it appear that at least one GOP candidate, Donald Trump,  says that the US should bow out of NATO……a fringe stand at best….but could this candidate be right?

NATO will celebrate its sixty-seventh anniversary in April. Instead of being an occasion for the usual expression of mind-numbing clichés about the alliance’s enduring importance both to U.S. security and world peace, it should become an opportunity for a long overdue assessment of whether the NATO commitment truly serves America’s best interests in the twenty-first century. There is mounting evidence that it does not.

Source: Is it Time for America to Quit NATO? | The National Interest Blog

NATO is being used as a cover for many military interventions and the way that they seem to multiply exponentially maybe it is time to bow out of NATO….the whole idea of a NATO-like organization has become obsolete…..

Unlike many libertarians, I love presidential election season, because that’s when generally ignored foreign policy issues are discussed beyond the small circle of Washington wonks. And that’s why I’m having such fun with Donald Trump – much to the annoyance of some of my readers, both libertarians and liberals alike: because he’s provoking a much-needed […]

Source: NATO: Worse Than ‘Obsolete’ – Antiwar.com Original by — Antiwar.com

I am in the corner of those that say we need to eliminate our membership in NATO….in my opinion, it is too easy for us to go to war at the drop of a hat…..we enter into conflict without any debate or oversight…that smacks of empire….

Yes I said EMPIRE!

(radicalcartography.net)

What would you call this deployment?

 

Little Things Become Big Things

Ever since Russia’s invasion and conflict with Georgia (the country not the state) in 2008 I have been watching the region of the Caucasus Mountains closely.  I feel that if a larger conflict is to bloom then this region has the greatest potential to become the next linch pin for war…..

Source: Looking For The Linchpin – In Saner Thought

I know that I link to this article a lot…..but it is one of my better analysis (plus it is a small ego boost to link to it often)…..

This region is volatile and we in the West hear very little about it….a shame because it could be our next “Big One”…..

I bring this up again because there has been yet another incident where one nation in the region is at odds with another…..this tie it is Azerbaijan and Armenia……

Two Azeri servicemen have been killed in border clashes with the Armenian army, Azerbaijan’s defense ministry said on Monday.

The Armenian defense ministry accused the Azeri side of triggering fresh confrontation along the border between Armenia and Azerbaijan and around Nagorno-Karabakh, which lies inside Azerbaijan but is controlled by majority ethnic Armenians.

Clashes between the two ex-Soviet nations and around separatist Nagorno-Karabakh have stoked fears of a wider conflict breaking out in the South Caucasus, which is crossed by oil and gas pipelines.

In an account that was disputed, Azerbaijan said an officer and a soldier were killed on Sunday when Armenian forces tried to cross the state border.

Armenia accused Azeri forces of attacking several villages near the border between the two countries, wounding one civilian at the weekend

Sporadic clashes between the two have thwarted international efforts, led by France, Russia and the United States, to end the dispute, which broke out in the dying years of the Soviet Union and killed about 30,000 people.

(Reuters)

Back in December 2015 there was another clash between the two nations…..

Armenia says a ceasefire with neighbouring Azerbaijan over the breakaway region of Nagorno-Karabakh no longer exists, describing frequent skirmishes at the front line as “war”.

Artsrun Hovhannisyan, a spokesman of Armenia’s defence ministry, said on Tuesday that Azerbaijan was using “all existing armaments: tanks, howitzers, and anti-aircraft artillery” against Armenian soldiers in the disputed region.

“What we have today is a war,” said Hovhannisyan. “We must use the word ‘war’ as there is no ceasefire anymore.”

Azerbaijan responded with counter-accusations, blaming Armenia for the recent escalation.

(Al-Jazeera)

There have been a war of words between the two since the collapse of the USSR…..and now it is becoming more harmful than in the past….will this lead to the “Big One” that could involve the rest of the world since we are setting ourselves up to “good guys versus bad guys”, a bi-polar world, yet again.

Heavy fighting has broken out between Armenian and Azerbaijani forces along the front lines of the separatist Nagorno-Karabakh region, reportedly killing at least one child in what one official called the worst clashes since 1994. Officials from each former Soviet republic blamed the other Saturday for the fighting that began overnight, the AP reports. Both Armenia and Azerbaijan said they had inflicted heavy losses on the other. David Babayan, a spokesman for Nagorno-Karabakh’s separatist president, said a boy of about 12 was killed and two other children wounded in a Grad missile barrage by Azerbaijani forces. Azerbaijan says 12 of its soldiers were killed and around 100 Armenian forces were killed or wounded.

Vladimir Putin has urged all sides to cease firing and “show restraint,” a Kremlin spokesman says. Nagorno-Karabakh, a region in Azerbaijan, has been under the control of local ethnic Armenian forces and the Armenian military since 1994. The Armenian Defense Ministry says Azerbaijan used aircraft, tanks, and artillery to try to make inroads into Nagorno-Karabkh and that “Azerbaijani authorities bear all responsibility for the unprecedentedly supercharged situation.” The Azerbaijani Defense Ministry says the fighting began when Armenian forces fired mortars and large-caliber artillery shells across the front line.

Could a recent meeting between Kerry and the Azeri president just added fuel to this fire?

The Nagorno-Karabakh situation, whereby a territory that the UN recognizes as part of Azerbaijan is under the control of an unrecognized autonomous government backed by Armenia, has sat unresolved and rarely spoken of for 22 years. The resumption of hostilities this weekend, however, comes just days after Secretary of State John Kerry spoke to Azeri President Ilham Aliyev, calling for an “ultimate resolution” to the conflict.

Kerry made it clear he wanted a diplomatic settlement, but that still doesn’t mean his comments didn’t play a role in precipitating these new hostilities, if it convinced Aliyev that the US isn’t going to allow the status quo to remain in place.

The Nagorno-Karabakh situation is complex, but the US interest seems primarily in resolving it to spite Russia, seeing Russia as using the standoff as leverage to keep itself tied to both nations, particularly Armeni

Finally a report issued by the International Crisis Group can help my reader understand this situation….more so than trying to get reliable information from the MSM…….

The Nagorno-Karabakh conflict has long been regarded as a tinderbox in the heart of the South Caucasus – with serious implications for the wider region including Russia, Turkey and Iran. Each spring, when low-level violence tends to break out, policymakers worry about incidents spiraling out of control due to miscalculation or escalation by leaders in […]

Source: What’s Behind the Flare-up in Nagorno-Karabakh? | Crisis Group

It appears  that my paper about the region is looking more and more accurate….this could well be the next linch pin that plunges the world into darkness….yet again.

Heavy weekend fighting continued into Monday, with reports of at least three more Azeri soldiers killed and Nagorno-Karabakh reporting that they’ve had 20 fighters killed and 72 wounded in the past three days of fighting.

Armenian President Serzh Sarksyan warned a group of foreign ambassadors today that the war could have “unpredictable and irreversible consequences, right up to a full-scale war,” cautioning that both Russia and Turkey could quickly become involved.

Hopefully calmer heads will prevail.

Can You Explain The Media?

I have not had much good to say about our MSM….personally, I would trust a 5 year old at the playground for more accurate information……with that said I saw a good cartoon on Twitter and just had to grab it….it explains a lot….at least to me.

 

Works for me…..how about you?

Do Military Leaders Deserve Our Trust?

Trust is a fleeting thing…..especially in the US….the leader we trusted yesterday is today dog….we American have been putting out trust in the wrong direction for decades now.

The question here has been asked…..do they deserve our trust?

This article questions our military leaders…we have been deifying these people since World War One……are they truly deserving?

Senior U.S. military leaders are becoming indistinguishable from their political counterparts in disregarding the public.

Source: Do Military Leaders Deserve Our Trust? | The National Interest Blog

Question has been asked…..is there a good answer?