The Battlefront Diary

My final post of the day…..keeping you informed because NO one else will.

Once again I will step up and give you the news that the media would rather you not know…..

First, this is not from the shooting war in the Middle East but from a country that has tasted the terrorism we all so dread…..Belgium

The entire population of Belgium is to be issued with a ration of iodine tablets, months after warnings about the threat of Isil building a dirty bomb.

It emerged following last month’s terrorist attacks that an Isil cell may have been plotting to kidnap a nuclear expert in order to build a “dirty bomb”. Eleven nuclear workers had their passes revoked.

Do they know something we should?  Maybe…….

Though the extremely cautious nature of their statements means they didn’t offer much detail, the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) is expressing “extreme concern” about the possibility that ISIS is not only using chemical weapons, but is making them.

The “possibility” is just their reluctance to confirm things they haven’t been formally authorized to confirm, as ISIS has bragged about their capacity to manufacture chemical weapons in multiple videos, and they have repeatedly launched such strikes, sickening large numbers of civilians and combatants.

ISIS has captured a large number of empty chemical weapons shells over the course of the war in Iraq and Syria, remnants of those nations’ since dismantled programs, and has developed the capability to produce some more primitive chemicals to deploy in such weapons.

It is permissible to worry?

After years of denying that US troops are in the thick of the fighting in Iraq and Syria……

Speaking today at the Senate Armed Services Committee, Joint Chiefs of Staff chairman Gen. Joe Dunford confirmed that US troops in Iraq are “fighting and dying” in combat operations, confirming that the October 22 death of a Army sergeant was in combat.

That admission is a big one, as US officials have danced around the question of “combat troops” by presenting the troops being deployed to Iraq, and elsewhere in the region, as “trainers” or “advisers” in official comments.

Sen. Dan Sullivan (R – AK) pushed particularly hard on the matter, saying he believes the attempt to present Iraq as “non-combat” diminishes the sacrifices of the soldiers slain in the country, and that it iss important to “level with the American people.”

Finally a little truth from the Pentagon…it is a bit refreshing.

One more LIE from the White House……..

After Pres. Obama announced on Monday that he would deploy 250 additional special operations troops to Syria, State Department spokesperson John Kirby tried to deny that Obama had ever promised not to send “boots on the ground” there.

“There was never this ‘no boots on the ground,’” said Kirby. “I don’t know where this keeps coming from.”

The problem for Kirby was that Obama has repeated the promise at least 16 times since 2013:

For instance, on August 30, 2013, Obama said: “We’re not considering any boots-on-the-ground approach.”

On September 10, 2013, he said: “Many of you have asked, won’t this put us on a slippery slope to another war? One man wrote to me that we are ‘still recovering from our involvement in Iraq.’ A veteran put it more bluntly: ‘This nation is sick and tired of war.’ My answer is simple: I will not put American boots on the ground in Syria.”

On September 7, 2014, he said: “In Syria, the boots on the ground have to be Syrian.”

And on and on and on………

Appears the Brits are going to follow suit of the Americans……

British defense officials are confirming that there is ongoing consideration of a plan to send “hundreds more” troops to Iraq, with the troops to be listed as “trainers.” This would be a substantial addition to the existing 300 troops in Iraq.

Unlike the US, which has been putting its ground troops increasingly on the front lines, the British troops in the nation so far are far away from any combat sites. In addition to training

Another American soldier has died in Iraq…..

ISIS forces attacked and overran the northern Iraqi town of Tel Asqof, near the major ISIS city of Mosul, with a number of suicide vehicle bombers forcing their way in through Kurdish forces, and fighting heavily. Among the slain in what officials are confirming is “direct combat” was a US Navy SEAL, Charles Keating IV.

This is the third US soldier killed in fighting on the ground in Iraq since the latest war began in 2014, despite repeated assurances from the Obama Administration that there would be “no boots on the ground” in Iraq whatsoever.

News from the battlefront that is not important enough for the MSM to waste their time on reporting…..

 

“We Need More Troops”

I have written about the necessity of the reinstatement of the draft (conscription for those that have NO idea what the Draft is all about)…..I call for it because I feel that there is NO shared experience in war ……this country turns its back on our troops the first chance they get because they do not have to think about it….no one cares.

If you would like to check out what I had to say……

The US seems to be Hell bent on continuing war upon war……and if so then it will need to drastically change its way of think about the military….that is if they want a primo milita…

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

I have been writing about this since 2007…..

Things are not going well for the military, what with Iraq and Afghanistan and any other conflict that Bush wishes to engage in . US Troops are being extended an extra 4 months, the National Guard …

Source: Why No Draft? – In Saner Thought

This country is at war…….granted it is not a declared war but if troops die then it is a war……..and we enter into a new conflict almost monthly and we have only a finite amount of troops to use for these deployment…..

But no one in Washington seems to hear the call…..and they say that we need more troops…..

The chairman of the House Armed Services Committee has introduced a defense bill that would increase the U.S. Army by 45,000 soldiers.

Rep. Mac Thornberry’s version of the fiscal 2017 National Defense Authorization Bill would provide money to add 20,000 soldiers to the active Army’s end-strength, bringing it to 480,000.

The bill would also add 15,000 to the National Guard and 10,000 to the Reserves, resulting in a Guard strength of 350,000 and a Reserve strength of 205,000. The panel was expected to approve the measure on Wednesday.

Under the President Barack Obama’s current proposed defense budget, the Army projects its end-strength to be at a total of 980,000 soldiers by fiscal 2018, including 450,000 for the active force, 335,000 for the Army National Guard and 195,000 for the Army Reserve.

But how will this increase be handled without a draft?

Oh they have a plan…….

Thornberry’s revised budget earmarks just over $2 billion in additional funding for the troop increase, according to language in the bill. That’s about $2.5 billion short of what the Army would need, according to Army senior leaders that have testified it will cost about $1 billion for every 10,000 soldiers.

“Where possible, Chairman Thornberry’s proposal cuts excessive or wasteful expenditures and rededicates those resources to urgent needs,” according to the bill’s summary. “Even with a vigorous re-prioritization of programs, the Committee was unable to make up essential shortages in the President’s budget and simultaneously provide a full year of contingency funding.

“The proposal is designed to restore strength to the force through readiness investments and agility through much needed reforms, while providing a more solid foundation for the next President to address actual national security needs,” it states

I love the thought process in DC….they are best called MORONS!

Here is a simple solution…..the draft is just inactive….re-activate and all this creative bullsh*t will not be necessary.

Simple solutions are always the best solutions.

 

Why NATO Has Become One of the Most Destructive Forces

North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) began in 1949 as a first line defense against the rise and expansion of communism……since those early days it has expanded to become a first strike weapon the world over….and today is probably the most dangerous organization on the planet…..

Instead of providing security for its members it has become a major cause of the instability in the world…..

Communism is dead!  But yet NATO continues be a source of military action.  Can anyone explain this “mission creep” for NATO?

Actions in Afghanistan, Europe, and Libya have created insecurity rather than order.

Source: Why NATO Has Become One of the Most Destructive Forces on the Planet | Alternet

WORD!

A-10 VS F-35

For my last post of the day….I would like to return to my ranting about the new strategic fighter, the F-35……..or as I like to call it….the expensive brick!

When I heard the the US military was thinking about replacing the A-10 Warthog with the ultra-modern F-35 I went into full ranting mode….I have been defending the honor of the Warthog…..but in case you missed some of the post I have written….a little reminder……

Source: In Defense Of The ‘Hog – In Saner Thought

Source: F-35: F.U.B.A.R. – In Saner Thought

I seldom have much good to say about the Repubs in Congress…..but I will come to the aid of Sen. Kelly Ayotte, R-NH, has put a whammy on the Pentagon about the F-35……

One of the central issues in the debate over retiring the U.S. Air Force’s A-10 attack jet has been whether or not the new F-35 Joint Strike Fighter will be an adequate replacement to perform the close air support mission.

The program office has issued a number of conflicting statements on the issue. And in this week’s Senate Armed Services Committee update on the F-35 program, the most heated exchange came when Sen. Kelly Ayotte, a New Hampshire Republican, sought clarification about conflicting statements Air Force leaders made regarding the mission — and which aircraft would perform it.

Source: Senator Demands to Know — Is the F-35 Supposed to Replace the A-10 or Not? — War Is Boring

The ‘Hog can continue its mission with only one engine….the F-35 cannot successfully reject the pilot when in trouble…….the F-35 is a BRICK!

Finally someone is putting the Pentagon on the spot for their attempt to replace the best thing that can happen in combat…..the ‘Hog shows up in close ground support o the troops.

The A-10 can be upgraded for a fraction of the cost of a piece crap that is making NO progress in a “new” weapon for close ground support…..why ditch what works?

Here’s an idea….ask a grunt which he would prefer to see come to his/her rescue……I will wager that the A-10 wins hands down.

If one truly wants what is best for our troops….then the A-10 is your choice.  Period!

The War Without End

That’s right….I will keep harping on this war thing until someone realizes how pathetic and unnecessary it all really is……

Remember back in 2003 when there was this huge banner hung for all the world to see….”Mission Accomplished”…..

And since that day we have been up to our collective butts in conflict in Iraq…..I will not mention Afghanistan, that will be for another day…..we have pulled our troops out and almost immediately started sending them back in to the conflict……

This is becoming truly a war without end…..

Below is an interview about the war that the US cannot move beyond…..

The U.S. is at war with the same extremist group it claimed to have defeated five years ago, and it’s relying on sectarian extremists to “win” again.

Source: The Iraq War Never Ended: An Interview with Anand Gopal | Opinion | teleSUR English

Some Americans felt optimistic when the US started bringing our troops home….but that was just a momentary thing…..and Obama returned our troops into the sandbox……and there is NO relief in sight……

In a press conference during his visit to Saudi Arabia, President Obama talked up the idea of keeping the US military presence in Iraq, which continues to grow, deployed in the country for the long term, citing the country’s instability as proof that America needs to be more involved.

Iraq’s parliament is in a state of crisis over the past week, with a proposed cabinet leading to fist-fights on the parliament’s floor and the sacking of the speaker. Since then, Iraq’s parliament has not successfully had a single session.

Obama called on Iraq to immediately finalize a new cabinet so they could focus on the war, and suggested that increases in US funding for the Iraqi government were to be based heavily on Iraq’s ability to get a new cabinet in place.

It would appear that our attempt at nation building did not go as well as some had thought.  Not even a bribe of massive amounts of cash has brought about any stability……so see  money cannot buy everything.

This situation will not end well….no amount of promises and slogans will see this thing to a calmer conclusion…..

Our society is fragmented, our economy is rigged and the only thing my granddaughter has to look forward to is more war and more frequent wars….our children deserve better.

And Yet More News From The Battlefront

I know today is the big day…the New York Primary and that all eyes will be on the Big Apple….I wish I could muster a little enthusiasm but sadly it eludes me about now…..

I like to keep my readers focused when I can…..our many wars is a point that needs a lot more focus…..and that is why I am here…..

“I hate war as only a soldier who has lived it can, only as one who has seen its brutality, its futility, its stupidity”  Eisenhower

I recently reported about the troops increases that have gone under the MSM radar…..more troops for Syria and Iraq…..and it appears that my reports were just the tip of the poison spear……

Over the weekend, US officials reiterated that the Obama Administration has designs on dramatic escalation of the ground wars in Iraq and Syria, with near-term plans to send as many as 200 more ground troops into northeastern Syria to “train” the Kurds.

There are also plans for a significant escalation in Iraq, though the timing of this is less certain because of the ongoing political row over Prime Minister Hayder Abadi’s cabinet. The US and Iraq made a deal to cap ground troops in Iraq at 3,870, and the US is believed to be “closer to 5,000” at this point, with more coming all the time.

A “dramatic escalation”?  Those words would weigh over on the American mindset.  But will it?

After reporting that more troops were headed to the Middle East……it has been dismissed as “advisers”……and that is a lie!

The US will deploy more than 200 additional troops to Iraq—upping the number from 3,870 to 4,087—and send Apache helicopters for the first time into the fight against ISIS in Iraq, the first major increase in US forces in nearly a year. The uptick in US forces—and the decision to put them closer to the front lines—is designed to help Iraqi forces retake the key northern city of Mosul, and help retake Raqqa, the extremist’s group self-proclaimed capital in Syria, the AP reports. Last June the Obama administration announced hundreds of troops would be deployed to help the Iraqis retake Ramadi—a goal accomplished at the end of the year. Of the extra troops, most will be Army special forces, who’ve been used throughout the anti-ISIS campaign to advise and assist the Iraqis. The remainder will include some trainers, security forces for advisers, and maintenance teams for the Apaches.

The advise-and-assist teams—made up of some dozen troops, each accompanied by security forces—will embed with Iraqi brigades and battalion, likely putting them closer to the front lines. The proximity to the battlefront will allow the US teams to provide more tactical combat advice as Iraqis move toward Mosul, still under ISIS control. Until now, US advisers have worked with the Iraqis at the headquarters level, well back from the front lines. A senior defense official told reporters that while Iraqi leaders have been reluctant to have a large number of US troops in Iraq, they also need certain capabilities that only more American or coalition forces can provide. Iraqi leaders back the addition of more US troops if their work is coordinated with Iraqis and directed toward retaking Mosul. Anonymous US officials have said that the number of special operations forces in Syria would be increased at some point, but Defense Secretary Ash Carter, speaking to US troops in Baghdad, didn’t mention that.

And ….so it begins! (again)

Back in the 1990’s the USA took its forces out of the Philippines…all army, navy and air force….all gone….now that China is flexing its muscle in the South China Sea the US is returning to the island nation……

US Secretary of Defense Ash Carter today announced the US will be escalating its “regular rotations” of troops and warplanes into the Philippines, though despite a growing number of troops in the country at any given time, he insisted this was not an increased “permanent footprint.”

300 Air Force commandos, along with a number of additional US combat aircraft are heading to the Philippines this go around, with an eye on escalating tensions with China over maritime claims in the South China Sea.

Despite officials making no secret that the deployments directly target China, Carter insists they aren’t meant to provoke any sort of conflict with China, and that his policy is to “tamp down” tensions with them.

Oh goody…a further expansion on a limited amount of troops…..that should work out good, huh?

The big news over that last year…..even tough the media tries hard not to notice it….is the war between Saudis and the Yemen Houthi rebels…..the country is bombed into the dark ages….but wait it may not be over……

Already involved in the Saudi war in Yemen, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and the Obama Administration are in talks to launch a completely separate conflict in Yemen, this time focused against al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP).

Details are still scant, and US officials declined to offer specifics because of “operational security,” but the UAE has apparently sought US air support and logistics help for the offensive, knowing the administration is eager to go after AQAP.

Cool….yet more action for our troops.  BTW, what does “backing” actually mean?

Finally, in my last report I told my readers that the Taleban had issued its warning of a massive Spring offensive….and……..

Armed militants in Afghanistan staged a coordinated assault on a key government security agency in Kabul Tuesday morning, killing at least 28 people. The Taliban has claimed responsibility. The attack appears to have targeted an agency similar to the US Secret Service, providing personal protection for high-ranking government officials, the AP reports. Kabul Police Chief Gen. Abdul Rahman Rahimi told reporters that another 327 people were wounded in the assault, which began with a powerful suicide car bomb attack on the agency compound gates. A group of armed militants then entered the compound and waged a prolonged battle with government security forces, which officials say has now ended.

Dozens of civilian apartment buildings, houses, and shops, as well as several government buildings, were damaged by the car bomb blast. Taliban insurgents have stepped up their attacks since announcing the start of their spring offensive last week, though the Guardian notes that the winter was unusually violent, with multiple attacks in the capital and elsewhere. President Ashraf Ghani issued a statement condemning the latest attack, saying it “clearly shows the enemy’s defeat in face-to-face battle with Afghan security forces.” (The Taliban claimed to have just missed John Kerry with a rocket attack during his recent visit to Kabul.)

Afghanistan is America’s forgotten war….but if you would like an inside look at what we cab expect from the Taleban this Spring then I offer…….

Source: Afghanistan Partial Threat Assessment: April 12, 2016 | Institute for the Study of War

Finally….in the category of…..Ya Think?

A bipartisan pair of lawmakers are worried that President Obama’s recent decision to deploy 217 more forces to Iraq is mission creep.

“Yesterday’s announcement that the U.S. will deploy more than 200 additional troops to Iraq to assist in the fight against ISIL is textbook mission creep,” Rep. Barbara Lee (D-Calif.) said Tuesday.

Lee was Congress’ lone dissenter in granting then-President George W. Bush authority to go to war in Afghanistan.

Source: Lawmakers see ISIS war ‘mission creep’ | TheHill

Sorry to say……none of our wars are looking like a success in any stretch of the imagination……

 

War: Symmetry Is Not Everything

The war brow beating continues…….

Inkwell Institute

Subject:  Armed Conflict/Military Action

A lovely word….”symmetry”….it means to be pleasingly equal…..but this is not about architecture or paintings or some math equation….nope….this paper will focus on armed conflict….war if you will…..

Since antiquity there has been a belief that an army must equal or have an advantage over the opponent…..during the Cold War it was painfully obvious of this belief…..we called it the Arms Race…..where the US and the USSR spent billions upon billions to keep step with each other in the weapons department….with the fall of the Soviet Union that tactic was NO longer needed for the US was the dominant power in the world and we could relax the race for bigger and better weapons of destruction….since they would NO longer be needed as a deterrent to the Soviets…..

Source: Strategy, Military Tactics and Weapons: Asymmetric War and the New Geopolitics | Global Research – Centre for Research on Globalization

The days of a D-Day style invasion and the Blitzkrieg are gone…..history has shown us that an invasion is two things…..lots of destruction and allows extremists to gain a much needed foothold.

Recently “asymmetrical” warfare has a new name….”Hybrid Warfare”…..I guess it is easier to remember than the “A” word.

I also read an excellent piece  written on the site “War On The Rocks”…….

In trying to separate hybrid warfare from the classical bins of conventional or irregular war, I prefer to use Frank Hoffman’s definition, “a tailored mix of conventional weapons, irregular tactics, terrorism, and criminal behavior in the same time and battlespace to obtain [a group’s] political objectives.” There are other definitions out there, but you will find they are not being applied correctly to analysis of Russian tactics. Unfortunately, what Russian hybrid warfare is, and how it works, varies dramatically depending on what article, report, or PowerPoint brief you are reading. The more we have talked about it, the less we understand it as a useful concept or framework for looking at Russian actions.

Source: Russian Hybrid Warfare and Other Dark Arts

The days of massive assaults like Normandy are long gone…..time for the military to consider a new way of fighting, if fight they must, their numerous wars……so far all their efforts are dismal failure…..and a colossal waste of time, resources and cash.

War is changing…..either adapt or die!