Closing Thought–05Jun17

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Those damn terrorists have struck again and in England again!

The UK has had 3 attacks in 2 months.

And as typical the MSM has jumped on this with both feet….we have interviews with everyone from a victim to the pizza delivery guy that was in the neighborhood when the attack occurred.

I have been bitching about the coverage of these attacks from day one…the MSM goes straight for the sensational and the speculative and avoids any real news about the attackers or the attack.

The media is doing nothing to inform in the public….all they accomplish is to further the fear and the confusion.

Finally people are starting to see the misguided attempts at news….

This article was originally published on The Conversation.

News coverage of the Manchester terrorist attack was sadly familiar: cellphone videos of screaming victims; details of first responders’ hectic efforts; “Was it terrorism?” guesswork; speculation about the perpetrator. In this case, the horror was amplified by so many of the killed and wounded being young people.

Since the 2001 terrorist attacks on the United States, covering the type of violence inspired by al-Qaeda or the Islamic State (IS) has become a staple of the news media’s repertoire. Collectively, this reporting increases the public’s sense of vulnerability: An evil is out there, unpredictable and ferocious, sure to strike again.

Source: Mainstream media outlets are dropping the ball with terrorism coverage – Salon.com

In the end the public has no idea what are the causes other than some simplistic idea of hatred…..the population remains woefully ignorant.

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RFK: A “What If”

It is June 1968 in the Ambassador Hotel LA and RFK is giving a speech after winning the California primary when shots rang out……

Senator Robert Kennedy is shot at the Ambassador Hotel in Los Angeles after winning the California presidential primary. Immediately after he announced to his cheering supporters that the country was ready to end its fractious divisions, Kennedy was shot several times by the 22-year-old Palestinian Sirhan Sirhan. He died a day later.

Source: Bobby Kennedy is assassinated – Jun 05, 1968 – HISTORY.com

From time to time I like to throw a ‘what if’ at my readers…..this is one that was written almost 20 years ago about the assassination of RFK and what could have happened if he had not died…..

It is one of history’s great “what ifs.” What if Robert Kennedy had not been assassinated 40 years ago and gone on to become president of the United States? It’s safe to say that his presidency would have followed a different course from that of Richard Nixon. And it may just be that American politics would not be endlessly refighting the 1960s. Kennedy was a less polarizing figure than Nixon, who exploited the divisions that have now hardened into Red States and Blue States. But Kennedy himself was a complex and mercurial figure, so all we can really do is speculate. It’s an intriguing guessing game—if one does not get too dreamy about the mythology of RFK.

Source: What If Bobby Kennedy Had Become President?

Any ideas?

The Nuke That Never Was

50 years ago today the Six Day War began…..all that Americans know about it is that the Israelis won…the total extent of their knowledge.

But there was so much more that happened during the course of that war…..like the Israeli attack on the US Naval vessel, USS Liberty (topic to be covered later)….and the plan to use a nuke by the Israelis if their army was not winning the conflict….

Israel has never officially admitted that it developed nuclear weapons. But in interviews recorded nearly two decades ago, a former Israeli brigadier general describes a “doomsday operation” to detonate an atomic weapon on top of a mountain near Egypt during the Arab-Israeli war. Avner Cohen, an expert on Israel’s nuclear history, tells the New York Times the plan is “the last secret of the 1967 war.” Cohen interviewed Itzhak Yaakov—a “key organizer” of the plan, code-named “Samson” after the super-strong biblical hero—multiple times in 1999 and 2000. Those interviews—and other documents related to the plan—will be made public this week on the 50th anniversary of the start of the Arab-Israeli war.

Yaakov, who died in 2013, told Cohen the plan was to detonate an atomic bomb on a mountain on the Sinai Peninsula if it looked like Israel was going to lose the war. This would either scare Egypt and other Arab forces enough to rethink things, or it would cause world powers to intervene in the conflict. Yaakov said the only way to stop an enemy who was “going to throw you to the sea” was to “scare him.” The casualties that would have resulted from the plan are unclear. The US considered a similar plan in regards to Japan during WWII before deciding to bomb the country directly. Israel’s atomic weapon was never moved to the mountain due the speed at which Israel won the war, and the plan was never carried out. Read the full story here.

Two points….Israel refuses to admit that they possess nukes to this day…..second…what would the Middle East look like if they had gone through with the plan?

Then there was the plan by the USSR to destroy Israel……..

Abstract: The Soviet warning to Egypt about supposed Israeli troop
concentrations on the Syrian border in May 1967 has long been considered a
blunder that precipitated a war which the USSR neither desired nor expected.
New evidence from Soviet and other Warsaw Pact documents, as well as memoirs
of contemporary actors, contradicts this accepted theory. The author
demonstrates that this warning was deliberate disinformation, part of a plan
approved at the highest level of Soviet leadership to elicit Egyptian action
that would provoke an Israeli strike. Soviet military intervention against
the “aggressor” was intended to follow and was prepared well in advance.

Source: IMRA – Wednesday, September 10, 2003 Excerpt – How The USSR Planned To Destroy Israel in 1967

During that war there were so many plans within plans that most people do not know…..but it is the Middle East….there are ALWAYS plans within plans.

Carry A Big Stick Or Be Quiet

I have been writing for years about the disconnect between the public and the military.  It is so bad that war and troops deaths is nothing more than a fluff piece in the evening news.

The public turns a blind eye to all the conflicts we are fighting these days because there is NO shared experience…..it effects less than 5% of the population.

Although I am antiwar ….I have come down on the side of returning to the days of conscription (that is the draft for you Trump supporters)……

Source: Would a Return to Conscription Substantially Reduce the Probability of War? – In Saner Thought

Source: Time To Re-Think Conscription? | Ace News Room

Source: Time For Americans To F*cking Stand Up!! – In Saner Thought

As the wars drag on more and more people are starting to see the need to return to the days of conscription…..

Each year as they testify before congress, America’s armed service chiefs roll out pleas for the latest technology ‘essential’ to confront a predictable cast of global boogeymen. A pessimist could accuse them of using such testimony to scare congress and the public into supporting their slice of annual defense budgets. A pessimist could justify his position by pointing out the testimony’s conspicuous omission of conscription, essential to victory against any one or combination of Russia, China, North Korea, and Iran. While the technology of warships, aircraft and combat vehicles trotted out during testimony season is impressive, it can only give America an edge. Nations win wars on an irresistible wave of resources. America must therefore either include conscription into any discourse about confronting Russia, China, North Korea or Iran, or stop talking about confronting them.

America’s approach to warfare has changed for the worse. Current conflicts indicate a disturbing satisfaction with stalemate as a substitute for victory. America’s wars in Iraq and Afghanistan offer abject lessons about a national strategy unready to win a global war, much less isolated regional engagements. The stalemate in both conflicts betrays America’s inability to translate success and sacrifice at the tactical and operational level into anything close to strategic victory. America’s powerlessness to generate the political will for victory emboldens adversaries and exposes significant strategic vulnerabilities.

Source: Carry a Big Stick or Be Quiet: A Case for Conscription | Small Wars Journal

If we must fight these damn silly wars then we need to make the sacrifice of our troops and their families a shared experience….I am NOT a warmonger!  Something has to give….we are asking too much of the pool of soldiers we now have…….

That means a return to the DRAFT!

Death Of Children Is Unacceptable

The recent cowardly attack on the concert in Manchester England…killed and wounded many children and the world went crazy in its condemnation of the bastards that killed these children and rightly so.

Anytime that civilians are targeted for some sort of attack should be met with condemnation around the world……should be called what it is…..a war crime….a crime against humanity……NO matter who the perp is!

I say that because of recent news……

Exemplified by the hundred and some odd people they’ve killed in the last 48 hours, the US is struggling mightily with the narrative that they are taking extraordinary care to limit the number of civilian casualties in the air war in Syria, and are rapidly losing any pretense of a moral high ground.

Indeed, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights is noting that the soaring death toll from US airstrikes has now surpassed the civilian toll of the Assad government’s own airstrikes, which the US and other Western nations have condemned as indiscriminate and irresponsible.

Oftentimes, US officials have been so outraged at Syria’s “indiscriminate” air strikes that they’ve demanded regime change, and has railed at Russia and Iran for tolerating their tactics in bombing civilian targets. Obviously, the US never sees the same problem with its own massive killings.

That’s probably because officially, they don’t even recognize the overwhelming majority of the civilian deaths they cause, as the Pentagon’s official death toll for the air war in Iraq and Syria omits virtually all major incidents, and tends to be at most 10% of the toll reported by NGOs.

(antiwar.com)

Civilians should be off limits….even if they are family members of “bad guys”…I do not believe in the only “Guilty by association” bullshit.

You can pick your friends but you cannot pick your family….it is a crime to punish a whole family for the action of one person…..where will the US draw the line….since we are so found to drawing those lines…..?

The US is always using children and civilians to gin up some sort of action…and yet we are just as guilty as anyone in the deaths of civilians especially children…..and yet that is somehow acceptable.

Using civilian deaths that is until it is the deaths they cause……those deaths are under reported……

The Pentagon continues to offer “official” civilian death tolls from the US air war in Iraq and Syria that is only a tiny fraction of the killings documented by private NGOs, but even this deliberate undercount is rising at a growing rate, reflecting what is in reality a precipitous spike in civilian deaths.

The last report, from early May, only confirmed 23 civilians killed in the entire first quarter of 2017. That’s been revised upward to 128, as the Pentagon finally admitted to killing 105 civilians n a March 17 incident in Mosul. All indications from independent sources are that the Mosul incident actually killed around 220 people.

The Pentagon added another 27 civilian deaths in their new report, which includes April, with almost all of these deaths also happening in Mosul. This once again is far below the many hundreds reported killed everywhere else, but dramatically more than the single-digit monthly tolls they usually admit to.

Civilian deaths are never acceptable…..unavoidable but never acceptable.