Hostages Rescued!

More good news…..hostages held by Islamic extremist in Pakistan were rescued by the Pakistani army….the couple have been held for 5 years after their capture in Afghanistan…..

An American woman, her Canadian husband, and their three children born during five years in Taliban captivity are finally free. Caitlan Coleman and Josh Boyle, both in their 30s, and their three children were rescued by Pakistani security forces shortly after the family crossed into the country on Wednesday, Pakistan’s army says, per CNN. Coleman and Boyle were abducted by the Taliban-affiliated Haqqani Network while touring Afghanistan in 2012, when Coleman was seven months pregnant, reports Fox News. They were last seen with two children in hostage videos, believed to have been filmed in December 2016, in which the pair asked their respective governments to secure their release. “My children have seen their mother defiled,” said Coleman, who has since given birth to a third child.

The US government was tracking the family and alerted Pakistani officials when they crossed into Pakistan on Wednesday, reports Fox. Pakistani security forces then intervened. “All hostages were recovered safe and sound and are being repatriated to the country of their origin,” the army says. A US official tells NBC News the family is with US Embassy officials in Pakistan. President Trump appeared to hint at the rescue in Coleman’s home state of Pennsylvania on Wednesday, per ABC News. “Something happened today, where a country that totally disrespected us called with some very, very important news,” he said. “And one of my generals came in. They said, ‘You know, I have to tell you, a year ago they would’ve never done that.’ … This is a country that did not respect us. This is a country that respects us now.”

I have few thoughts…..this reminds me of an incident about 6 years ago when some contractors in Iraq went for a hike and wound up in Iran and were captured and charged with espionage.  I though back then….what makes these people decide to go to a region, in a war zone and with NO marked borders and go for a stroll?

Now these people….as the story goes they decided to go for a hike in an area that was known to be a hot bed of Taleban activity….again what part of this story makes sense?

Were these people just ignorant or was there another reason for these “incursions”?

Finally, Trump’s comments….they were more about him and his “supposed” policies not the intel that was given to the Pakistanis so they could rescue the couple and their children.  Again a platform so that he, Trump, can pat himself on the back.

Welcome home….have a burger and some fire and a pie a la mode……hopefully you may find some normalcy in your lives now.

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If They Only Had A Brain

“He is a f*cking moron!”

It has been reported that Tillerson has made that comment about Trump……and oh boy the news sites explode…..and wham!  We gonna have a Press  conference.

Well while the country waited for this “presser” we got to hear all about the ways that Tillerson is not as good fit in DC…..time was filled  while we waited.

Then about 1100hrs Eastern time Tillerson bounced out and told his side of the story.

The “presser” was the same as all …..he is a cheerleader of Trump and he is there to stay

The US Secretary of State reaffirmed his commitment to his role on Wednesday, denying that he would step down from his role.

Rex Tillerson called media reports that he had considered resigning “erroneous”, but stopped short of denying reports he had insulted President Donald Trump.

“I reaffirm my commitment to this role and I want to dispel this notion that I have considered leaving,” Tillerson said.

The Secretary of State denied speaking with the president earlier today and said his decision to speak was his alone.

he US Secretary of State reaffirmed his commitment to his role on Wednesday, denying that he would step down from his role.

Rex Tillerson called media reports that he had considered resigning “erroneous”, but stopped short of denying reports he had insulted President Donald Trump.

“I reaffirm my commitment to this role and I want to dispel this notion that I have considered leaving,” Tillerson said.

The Secretary of State denied speaking with the president earlier today and said his decision to speak was his alone.

In a short speech that listed his department’s reported achievements to date, Tillerson also praised the president’s intelligence and leadership before criticising Washington news media.

“He loves America… he’s smart, he demands accountability.”

That was the typical speech given by anyone that has been said to have stood up to the president….ass kissers.

It was a speech to one person only.  This speech was for no one but the man at 35,000 feet on his way to Vegas.

Captain Knee Pads

Iran: A Big Ass Can Of Worms?

Everyone is watching the drama with the US and North Korea play out….so far there has been little more than words fired at each other.  Almost daily there is an exchange of words…well threats, veiled threats…….and daily the speculation ramps up to a feverish pitch.

But behind the headlines and the scenes another nuke crisis is brewing…..the world is the the deal between the P5+1 and Iran on their nuke programs is in jeopardy….the rhetoric is not as loud between these player than the US and NK…..but the simmer pot is getting hotter everyday.

Word is the Trump is prepared to not re-certify the deal….even though all conditions seem to be met at this point.  The news is not good and Iran has jumped onto the rhetoric bandwagon….

The news that had come out the the US will not re-certify the deal and possibly extend more sanctions on Iran….that news has the Iranians thumping their chests as well….

Iran warned the United States against designating its Revolutionary Guards Corp as a terrorist group and said U.S. regional military bases would be at risk if further sanctions were passed.

The warning came after the White House said on Friday that President Donald Trump would announce new U.S. responses to Iran’s missile tests, support for “terrorism” and cyber operations as part of his new Iran strategy.

“As we’ve announced in the past, if America’s new law for sanctions is passed, this country will have to move their regional bases outside the 2,000 km range of Iran’s missiles,” Guards’ commander Mohammad Ali Jafari said, according to state media.

Source: Iran warns U.S. against imposing further sanctions

Before you take sides maybe you should learn a bit about the deal….

US President Donald Trump is expected to refuse to certify Iran’s compliance with the landmark 2015 nuclear deal, an agreement between world powers and Tehran aimed at limiting the latter’s nuclear programme to non-military purposes.

The move comes despite thinly-veiled criticisms from US allies in Europe who have developed burgeoning commercial and political ties with Iran

Source: Trump and the Iran deal: What you need to know | Iran News | Al Jazeera

I have stated many times that I support the Iranian deal….if a person would familiarize oneself with the deal then I think any rational American would support it also.

If for NO other reason than the problem with North Korea and its nuke resources could be doubled if the US pulls out of the Iran deal……how much further can this go before someone has the bright idea to stop talking and that the time for action is NOW?

The Problem of Collective Indifference

The US is still involved in a war they started 16+ years ago.  And since those days since we have engaged in more and more conflicts and not all are the ones we started…..it is as if if there is a war someplace then the US needs to be there.

In all this time few Americans seem to care that our people are being sent and dying….but yet they are the most “patriotic” population in the world….but in reality is the truth is they do NOT care about our countrymen are having to deal with this situation….the deadly situation.

Can anyone explain this “collective indifference” of the American people……

Consider, if you will, these two indisputable facts.  First, the United States is today more or less permanently engaged in hostilities in not one faraway place, but at least seven.  Second, the vast majority of the American people could not care less.

Nor can it be said that we don’t care because we don’t know. True, government authorities withhold certain aspects of ongoing military operations or release only details that they find convenient. Yet information describing what U.S. forces are doing (and where) is readily available, even if buried in recent months by barrages of presidential tweets.

Source: The Problem of Collective Indifference: Wars Go On and On | Alternet

What will it take for the American people to show some concern over all the war we have taken on?

Look at today……North Korea…..a month ago is all everybody could talk about….today it is the media that all talk….a year ago it was ISIS…..today we are lucky to hear the name mentioned….the American people become indifferent to the prevailing news……especially when it comes to war.

North Korea Remains Forefront Of The “War” Talk…..

I wish we could go one day without someone stepping out of the shadows and thumping their chest about the possibility of war.

The rhetoric is not going in a good direction…..even the word coming from the dark shadows of the White House are not encouraging….

A White House aide says there’s no misunderstanding what President Donald Trump means when he says “only one thing will work” to rein in North Korea’s nuclear and missile program, AP reports. Budget director Mick Mulvaney tells NBC that Trump’s “clearly telegraphing, and this should not be news to anybody,” that “military options are on the table. … They absolutely are.” Trump says years of talking to the North and providing aid haven’t worked.

But Democratic Sen. Chris Murphy wants Trump to “stop doing hurtful things to the country’s national security, like telling the North Koreans that there is no diplomatic path for them to give up nuclear weapons.” GOP Sen. Ron Johnson says “there is no viable military option. It would be horrific.” The senators were on CNN.

Of course this could be just a response to something NK has issued…..who knows for sure….it is almost impossible to keep up with the back and forth between the two regimes.

Here is where I add what the war would look like ……I just cannot let all the stupidity go on without pointing out the possible results of this insanity…..

At various times over the past few weeks, US President Donald Trump and other members of his administration have threatened to use military force to prevent North Korea from conducting additional nuclear or ballistic missile tests. The US carrying out any military option raises a significant risk of military escalation by the North, including the use of nuclear weapons against South Korea and Japan. According to the calculations presented below, if the “unthinkable” happened, nuclear detonations over Seoul and Tokyo with North Korea’s current estimated weapon yields could result in as many as 2.1 million fatalities and 7.7 million injuries.

Source: A Hypothetical Nuclear Attack on Seoul and Tokyo | RealClearDefense

No matter how “patriotic” you think you may be….it is still necessary to look at all aspects of the actions that are being considered……it involves a lot more than the firing of a couple of missiles.

Think about this…..NK is not the only nuke ordinance in the region.  Of course ther4 is Iran….but there is another that could be thrust to the forefront of the nuke situation…..Pakistan.

Could North Korea’s example form the template of future actions by Iran and Pakistan? Both states are now under renewed pressure by the United States, and may thus deem it in their interests to acquire a deterrent against the United States. There is indication that U.S. President Donald J. Trump has been looking for a way to withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal for a while, a deal he has repeatedly denounced as “one of the worst and most one-sided transactions the United States has ever entered into.”

Source: Could North Korea’s Example Inspire Iran and Pakistan? | The Diplomat

While NK is the focus of the situation….there are others in the shadows that could be inspired in one way or the other…..to look at this situation with blinders is just short of insanity.

Closing Thought–10Oct17

Nowhere To Run!

We all have seen the horrific refugee crisis that the many wars in the Middle East has created….millions upon millions trying to find a spot that they can live without worry about their livelihood or their family.

Even if every war in the Middle East was cease today the refugee crisis would not be abated……

Plagued by heat and dust: Desert dust storms such as here in Kuwait could occur more often in the Middle East and North Africa as a result of climate change. In addition, temperatures on very hot days could rise to 50 degrees Celsius on average in the region (approximately 122 degrees Fahrenheit) by the end of the century. Credit: Molly John, Flickr, Creative Commons

The number of climate refugees could increase dramatically in future. Researchers of the Max Planck Institute for Chemistry and the Cyprus Institute in Nicosia have calculated that the Middle East and North Africa could become so hot that human habitability is compromised. The goal of limiting global warming to less than two degrees Celsius, agreed at the recent UN climate summit in Paris, will not be sufficient to prevent this scenario. The temperature during summer in the already very hot Middle East and North Africa will increase more than two times faster compared to the average global warming. This means that during hot days temperatures south of the Mediterranean will reach around 46 degrees Celsius (approximately 114 degrees Fahrenheit) by mid-century. Such extremely hot days will occur five times more often than was the case at the turn of the millennium. In combination with increasing air pollution by windblown desert dust, the environmental conditions could become intolerable and may force people to migrate.

More than 500 million people live in the Middle East and North Africa – a region which is very hot in summer and where is already evident. The number of extremely has doubled since 1970. “In future, the climate in large parts of the Middle East and North Africa could change in such a manner that the very existence of its inhabitants is in jeopardy,” says Jos Lelieveld, Director at the Max Planck Institute for Chemistry and Professor at the Cyprus Institute.

Source: Climate-exodus expected in the Middle East and North Africa

Soon climate change will show the world that it is a problem that should not have been ignored until it was too late.

We He Go Or Will He Stay?

We have had a couple of days of high drama…..did Tillerson call Trump a moron or not?

Well we still do not know for after his, Tillerson, speech he never clarified that one point….he worked hard to say everything that the president wants to hear……and it worked for now….for Trump has come out patting Tillerson on the back and saying what a fine American he is.

Tillerson has contradicted Trump on many occasions and yet he still retains his job….does not sound like a Trump deal now does it?

Truth be told I was not a fan of Tillerson after his nomination….I thought he was a poor choice to run one of the most important cabinet posts…..he brought nothing in way of experience to the job.

How much longer can Tillerson sing the Trump tune….especially on the handling of North Korea?

Rex Tillerson could be the worst of the 69 secretaries of state in the history of the republic, but he did not deserve the drubbing he took Sunday from his boss.

Moreover, Washington’s efforts to disarm North Korea were not served by the public humiliation of America’s chief diplomat over the weekend.

“I told Rex Tillerson, our wonderful Secretary of State, that he is wasting his time trying to negotiate with Little Rocket Man,” President Trump tweeted Sunday morning. Then came the second blast “Save your energy Rex, we’ll do what has to be done!”

It was bad enough that Trump blasted “Rex” in public, but to compound the sin, the president did so while Tillerson was in Beijing, talking to the Chinese about disarming North Korea. China insists, as a price of its enforcement of sanctions, that America try to negotiate with Pyongyang. Trump’s words, therefore, undercut efforts to get Beijing to cut off the flow of cash to the stocky Kim Jong-un, also now known, thanks to Trump’s previous insults, as “Little Rocket Man.”

Source: Can Tillerson Sing Trump’s Tune on North Korea?

This last thing, the “moron” comment, has this growing rift between Tillerson and the president……can this thing be handled so that Tillerson keeps his job?

The American Conservative has taken a closer  look at this situation…..

Despite Tillerson’s denials yesterday and Trump’s denials today, the rift between him and the president is impossible to ignore. The Postreports:

For months now, Trump has been piqued by rumors of disloyalty that have filtered up to him from Foggy Bottom, the home of the State Department. In private meetings, the president has also been irked by Tillerson’s arguments for a more-traditional approach on policies, from Iran to climate change to North Korea, and by Tillerson’s visible frustration when overruled. Trump has chafed at what he sees as arrogance on the part of an employee.

And as Tillerson has traveled the globe, Trump believes his top diplomat often seems more concerned with what the world thinks of the United States than with tending to the president’s personal image [bold mine-DL].

If Trump thinks the Secretary of State’s job is to burnish the president’s personal reputation instead of promoting the interests of the U.S. (and I have no difficulty believing he thinks that), it is little wonder that he and Tillerson are such a poor fit. Tillerson may already be widely regarded as one of the worst Secretaries of State in modern times, but even he seems to understand that boosting Trump’s personal image isn’t part of his job. Even if it were part of his job, Trump would make it impossible for him to do that because he is constantly gainsaying Tillerson in public. The president chose Tillerson for the position, but can’t keep himself from second-guessing and contradicting his own appointee and thus guaranteeing his irrelevance in the eyes of other governments.

Source: The Tillerson-Trump Rift | The American Conservative

This situation is just silly…..Tillerson is gone it is just a matter of optics when.

Right now Trump has lost so many high placed advisers that he needs to kick back and wait for a better time….he will continue to feel up his base and when they come on-line with Tillerson leaving….then he will be gone like a dirty shirt.

My guess is, unless something changes, buy January 2018.