Closing Thought–31Jan19

A-10 vs F-35  Mash Up!

The Pentagon has had a brain fart and wanted to replace the close support plane A-10 with this high tech brick, the F-35.

The A-10 Warthog…..

I have been following this story in support of keeping the A-10 as the primary close troop support plane…….some of my thought…..https://lobotero.com/2018/03/05/a-10-vs-f-35-remix/

There has been an evaluation going on with the A-10 and F-35…..and the next stage will begin soon…..

The Pentagon-led F-35 vs. A-10 Close Air Support assessment is nearing its next phase of evaluation, following an initial “first wave” of tests in July of this year — designed to test which of the two aircraft might be best suited to confront heavy enemy fire when performing high-risk CAS missions.

“Mission performance is under evaluation,” Vice Adm. Mat Winter, Program Executive Officer, F-35 program, told reporters earlier this year.

Pre- Initial Operational Test & Evaluation test phases, are currently underway at Edwards AFB and Naval Air Station China Lake, officials said.

https://defensemaven.io/warriormaven/air/pentagon-f-35-vs-a-10-close-air-support-evaluation-hits-next-phase-qXj6tgp6g06nCJvtEMrzKg/

Personally, there is NO contest….the ‘Hog has been saving troops lives for decades and should keep doing what it does best.  I mean the Pentagon keeps upgrading the old B-52 and the same can be done with the A-10 and it would be cheaper than a fleet of flying bricks, F-35.

The A-10 does not need a replacement…..it carries out its duties just fine.

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Just Not Good Enough

We have finished the midterms and now all eyes will turn to the 2020 elections…..there is a wealth of opinions out there in what to expect with this voting…….

So why not let the old professor throw stuff out there for your consideration….

There is a small group that thinks that Trump will not run for re-election…they say that he would want to go out on top and not from a possible stinging loss that would follow him throughout the rest of his life both personal and professional.

There are Progressives that say that being anti-Trump is not enough to win in 2020….I agree…..

While affirming that he “strongly” disagrees with former Newt Gingrich, who led the GOP in the House in the mid-1990s, “on virtually every issue,” Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) is calling on Democrats in Congress to rip a page of out the Georgia Republican’s playbook by creating—and aggressively pushing—a new progressive version of the Contract With America in order to galvanize the nation, offer real solutions to its most urgent problems, and go beyond being simply anti-Trump.

In stark contrast to Gingrich’s original version—”a radical right-wing agenda full of tax breaks for the wealthy, massive cuts to programs vital to working families, and racist and cruel bills to ‘reform’ welfare and our criminal-justice system”—Sanders argues in a Washington Post op-ed on Thursday that Democrats should instead forge a vision that “reflects the needs of working Americans — centered on economic, political, social, racial and environmental justice.”

https://www.commondreams.org/news/2018/11/22/just-being-anti-trump-not-good-enough-sanders-urges-democrats-new-congress-embrace

ME?

If he stands for re-election as it is today I think he can win the election…..why?   I cannot see anyone in the DNC that could win on a head to head election.

Why?

Too many Clintonites to make a difference…..the Clintonites are NO better than the big business GOP……they stand up for progressism but are just a neo-liberal pack of manure……

https://www.counterpunch.org/2018/04/27/how-clintonites-are-manufacturing-faux-progressive-congressional-campaigns/

There is lots of noise coming from the Dems…but right now it is all noise and optics.

Sorry, wish I had better thoughts but looking at the political landscape these days and the Dems have zilch.

I agree…..anti-Trump is not a winning policy…..Dems need to dig deep and find some policies not rooted in the 1950s….or a placate of the big dollar donors.

Democrats Need To Speak Up!

2019…Trumps foreign policy is all the rage in the MSM…..withdrawal from Syria, draw down in Afghanistan, the coddling of Russia and the BS around North Korea, the chest thumping around the situation in Venezuela and finally the distrust of the Intel agencies…..been a helluva a year for the last 31 days……

But let’s look at Trump’s 2019 foreign policy……

Never before has any presidential administration been as all over the place in terms of national security and foreign policy as is that of Donald J. Trump. Indeed, one might well argue that there is no overriding policy at all in terms of a rational doctrine arrived at through risk versus gain analysis of developing international situations. Instead, there has been a pattern of emotional reactions fueled by media disinformation supplemented by “gut feelings” about a series of ultimately bilateral relationships that frequently have little or nothing to do with American national interests.

http://www.unz.com/pgiraldi/trump-foreign-policy-for-2019/

These days both parties are struggling with what foreign policy should look like….confusion and doubt is the keys these days……..

When the new members of the 116th Congress arrive in Washington next month, they’re likely to find themselves focusing on a relatively unusual priority: foreign policy. And though Democrats promised during the midterms to challenge President Donald Trump’s foreign policy, it’s not just about opposition to the president. With a flurry of think pieces proposing roadmaps for new progressive, liberal, or conservative foreign policies, everyone’s talking about the future of U.S. foreign policy. The most important of these debates are the ones inside the two political parties, as Republicans and Democrats attempt to build foreign policy platforms with an eye toward the 2020 election.

Curious to understand where the right and left are heading on foreign policy, we’ve held a variety of events at the Cato Institute to try and understand this question: a roundtable building on Patrick Porter’s work on the “liberal international order,” events with notable critics of the existing foreign policy consensus, such as Harvard’s Stephen Walt, meetings to explore potential areas of common ground between libertarians and progressives, and interviews with experts for Power Problems, our biweekly podcast

https://warontherocks.com/2018/12/the-battle-inside-the-political-parties-for-the-future-of-u-s-foreign-policy/

And in all that time the Dems have been their wimpy self about all these situations…some of the 2020 hopefuls have fallen on their swords when it comes to Trump foreign policy……

One month after President Donald Trump abruptly ordered thousands of troops to pull out of Syria and Afghanistan, only a handful of the Democratic Party’s likely 2020 presidential candidates have taken a stance on one of the most important U.S. foreign policy decisions in years.

The drawdown in Afghanistan and total withdrawal from Syria is expected to significantly alter the fight against the Islamic State militant group and potentially leave American-allied militias vulnerable as the U.S. begins to extricate its forces. The decision has also triggered backlash from the U.S. security establishment, including the resignation of top officials like former Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis.

https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/democrats-2020-syria-afghanistan_us_5c40f6d9e4b027c3bbbf849b

Now is the time for the people to demand this new Congress to make their policies known…..

As the nation continued to reel from President Donald Trump’s shock decision last month to remove all U.S. troops from Syria, news came Wednesday that an unknown number of US soldiers were among at least 15 killed in a bombing in northern Syria. Amid such continued violence, one would think the president’s withdrawal would have ever more urgency. And yet, just about everyone in Washington has attacked his decision to pull out.

The reflexive hatred for Trump that dominates the national conversation is bad for the US, especially when it comes to foreign policy. This is not to say that the president isn’t a flawed figure; after all, I’ve spent the better part of two years critiquing most of his policies. Still, when the man demonstrates prudent judgment—as in his recent calls to pull US troops out of Syria and Afghanistan—he should be applauded. But that’s unlikely to happen in a divided America, as long as an interventionist, bipartisan consensus runs the show in Washington.

https://original.antiwar.com/Danny_Sjursen/2019/01/17/lets-expose-congress-members-for-the-warhawks-they-are/

The direction the Congress sets will influence the world and the Dems must step up and do what is necessary.

Do We Really Need A War With Venezuela?

That is a serious and Legitimate question?

Well do we?

Our cracker jack Chief of Staff Bolton seems to to hunting along those lines…….

During a Monday White House press briefing national security adviser John Bolton was photographed carrying a notepad — presumably as he was fresh out of a national security meeting  and one of the things which appears to be handwritten on the pad is “5,000 troops to Colombia.”

The contents of the notepad were spotted almost immediately by multiple journalists online after an NBC news release featuring the AP photo was published. More precisely the full contents appear to read:

https://theantimedia.com/venezuela-5000-troops-colombia-bolton-notepad/

Personally and I am not alone do not think that US troops need to participate in any any shape of form in the situation in Venezuela.By Dou

 
The Trump Administration is backing Juan Guaidó, the 35-year-old leader of Venezuela’s National Assembly as the legitimate leader of the country.

Many in Washington, like Sen. Marco Rubio, who has urged the Trump Administration to publicly support Mr. Guaidó, are hopeful that the groundswell of support across the international community for Maduro’s political opponents will lead to Maduro’s removal from power by forces inside Venezuela. This would be the best outcome.

For others, the role of the Reagan Administration in removing Ferdinand Marcos from power in the Philippines is a useful precedent. The problem with this approach is that the Trump Administration risks getting caught in the unsavory trap of backing regime change via an internal coup d’etat cloaked in the legitimacy of the National Assembly, designed to confirm Washington’s preference regarding who enjoys the support of the Venezuelan People and who precisely should rule in Caracas.

https://www.realcleardefense.com/articles/2019/01/26/american_military_power_should_not_decide_venezuelas_future_114139.html

This just keeps getting closer and closer to all out conflict…..time for the US to step back and let the people of Venezuela decide their own future……I am thinking about eh cluster fuck the US caused in Chile in the 1970s…..it was not pretty and Venezuela will not be pretty.

Nicolás Maduro was re-elected Venezuela’s president last May by fraudulent means, as regional governments and independent observers noted at the time, and his leadership lacks legitimate authority. Maduro, in office if not in power since 2013, has proved himself an incompetent and unimpressive successor to the late socialist president, Hugo Chávez, on whose name and reputation he shamelessly trades.

Maduro has disastrously mismanaged Venezuela’s potentially wealthy economy, overseeing severe shortages of food and medicine and hyperinflation. His authoritarian rule, enforced by violence, has exacerbated social divisions, undermined democratic institutions and free media, caused millions to flee abroad and alienated neighbouring countries.

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2019/jan/27/the-observer-view-on-venezuela-consensus-not-conflict

What’s the old say ……..”Yankee go home”…..and we should do just that.

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