The New “Commander-In-Chief”

We will soon go to the polls and vote for the one person that we trust to be out new commander-in-chief……but in this day and age do we need a commander-in-chief?

Maybe it’s the phrase — “Commander in Chief” — that best captures the transcendent absurdity and unaddressed horrors of the 2016 election season and the business as usual that will follow.

I don’t want to elect anyone commander in chief: not the xenophobic misogynist and egomaniac, not the Henry Kissinger acolyte and Libya hawk. The big hole in this democracy is not the candidates; it’s the bedrock, founding belief that the rest of the world is our potential enemy, that war with someone is always inevitable and only a strong military will keep us safe.

Source: Commander In Chief: Not Needed – LA Progressive

The voter needs to wake up top the fact that we are in a perpetual war footing…..we need to find a way to take ourselves out of this ever expanding equation…..all in all it is a world gone mad……(good title for an article)……

The relentless drumbeat against Donald Trump continues. The Washington Post on October 14 endorsed Hillary Clinton for president while also including in the print edition nine articles, three op-eds, and three letters blasting the GOP candidate, including pieces in the Style and Metro sections of the paper. On the following day there were five articles, a lead editorial, three letters, two op-eds, and two cartoons. And the Post is not alone, with the New York Times doing its bit in running news articles on Trump’s alleged sexual proclivities while the television media continue to run with the stories relating to earlier revelations. When Trump raised the possibility that all of this activity is being coordinated and possibly in part fabricated by the Clinton campaign, he was castigated for even suggesting such a thing.

More disturbing, in my opinion, is the role the White House has been playing in the drama. President Barack Obama has been active in speaking for Hillary and damning Trump, describing the GOP candidate as both unfit for office and lacking in the experience necessary to become head of state. There is a certain irony in Obama’s assertions, as he himself entered office as probably the least experienced president of the past hundred years, but it is the White House’s taking the lead in an electoral campaign that is at a minimum troubling. Traditionally, the president as head of state should be above the fray, as he is paid and empowered by the people to run the country, not to campaign for his successor. It is to be presumed that the Democratic National Committee foots the bill when Obama engages in campaign whistle-stops, but one has to wonder if that includes all the infrastructure costs involved in moving the president from place to place. And, undoubtedly, it would be difficult to winnow out costs when Obama combines campaigning and his official duties.

Source: A World Gone Mad | The American Conservative

Your vote can decide whether the world continues to go mad or if sanity can return of our foreign affairs……

Me?  I’m thinking Green!

Why Not Admit That America Is Fighting 5 Wars?

The newest push against the barbarous turds in Mosul, ISIS……our continuing pounding of Syria……(thinking)….did I forget anything?

You bet your ass you did….

The shameful conspiracy of silence around America’s many wars

In an election flush with conspiracy theories, here’s one that’s real: Both major party nominees, as well as the journalists who cover the election and moderate the debates, are actively conspiring to avoid talking about the fact that the United States is waging war in at least five countries simultaneously: Iraq, Syria, Yemen, Libya, and Somalia.

In the first two presidential debates, our involvement in the Syrian civil war was briefly discussed, as was ISIS in vague terms, and the Iran nuclear deal, and Russia’s mischief-making in Eastern Europe and the Middle East, and Libya, though mostly in the past tense, focused on our 2011 intervention to depose Moammar Gadhafi and the subsequent attack on American government facilities in Benghazi a year later.

Source: Why won’t anyone admit that America is fighting 5 wars?

Five Wars?  How many more can we fight successfully?

No matter which of the worthless candidates wins the election…we will have many others to contend with in the future….

We, the US, has been at war so long no that it has become humdrum… least for some….or should I say most?

The days of massive troops attacking a beach are gone……the Napoleonic style is no more…..there is a whole new way of “fighting”…….these are not your Daddy’s wars…….

A recommendable New York Times piece looks at the mostly hidden way the U.S. is now waging wars. The example is Somalia, where the U.S. has been at war with the people of that country for over 25 years. But, as the authors note, the same modus operandi applies elsewhere.

The Obama administration has intensified a clandestine war in Somalia over the past year, using Special Operations troops, airstrikes, private contractors and African allies in an escalating campaign against Islamist militants in the anarchic Horn of Africa nation.

Source: The New U.S. Way Of War: Special Ops, Mercenaries, Rebels, Proxies, Drones | Global Research – Centre for Research on Globalization

There is a new way of thinking about the combatants……

In May 2007, I concluded my remarks to the graduates of Duquesne University (my Alma Mater) with these words: “Life will soon bring you increased responsibilities, and it is rare that you will have a legitimate choice to do nothing. Responsibility usually demands action.”

In fact, during my tenure at CIA, acting was often tough and a little lonely since the Agency was serving a government whose definition of the war on terror far outstripped any other and a president with a bolder view on how to conduct the conflict than many (eventually most) in the Congress thought appropriate, and within the executive branch, CIA operated on the outer edges of executive prerogative more than any other arm of government.

Source: Choices of War: Detain and Interrogate, or Kill? | World Affairs Journal

The last option seems to be the easiest…..

Afghanistan: 15 Year War

We do not hear much about Afghanistan these days even though it is our longest war….EVER!

But for those that are interested…..another American soldier has died in defense of their country…..

A U.S. service member and a U.S. civilian died Wednesday after an attack near a coalition base in Kabul, according to a U.S. Forces Afghanistan news release.

The attack was carried out by an unknown assailant, who was later killed, according to the release. The release does not elaborate on the nature of the attack.

In addition to the two deaths, one U.S. service member and two U.S. civilians were injured. They are in stable condition.

The two people who were killed were carrying out unspecified duties associated with the NATO mission to train, advise and assist Afghan forces, according to the release.

I realize that few seem to care about the death of an American soldier…that is until it can be used as a political prop (a practice I find distasteful and pathetic)…….but I will be the conscience of the country if I must……

There is more about Afghanistan……we here that the Afghan army is doing well just they need more planes and such to be successful…..but is that true?

15 years into the NATO occupation of Afghanistan, the Taliban controls more territory now than at any other time during the war, and the losses continue to mount for the Afghan government. The war has never been going “well,” exactly, but the losses are becoming a lot more visible.

the NATO nations involved in the war invested heavily in capturing and holding certain key cities, and as they began to draw down their forces, many nations sold these territorial gains, however limited they were, as their chief military accomplishments. Now, they’re watching those cities fall.

These stories exist everywhere around Afghanistan, as NATO spent billions to build up an Afghan military which is falling apart at the seams, unable to properly defend much of anything, and likewise unable to recruit enough people to make up for their losses.

Afghan officials are downplaying the losses, insisting they are temporary. Yet they are losing an estimated 10,000 police a year just to casualties, above what they’re able to recruit, and in the military, force levels have always been dubious, given the widespread corruption and existence of tens of thousands of “ghost troops” created by crooked officials just to collect salaries.


So as you can read….Afghanistan is NOT the success that some would have you believe……after 15 years it is time for the US to consider whether they want to invest more lives and money in a cause that is falling apart as I type.

Is it worth further investment?

Iraq: Battle For Mosul Update

The battle to take back Mosul from ISIS has begun and the story is that it will be the Iraqis in the lead and in the fighting….


“No boots on the ground” has evolved into over 6,000 US troops in Iraq, and pledges that they would play no combat role in the war against ISIS has now given way to US ground troops being deployed on the front lines in Iraq’s largest invasion to date, the ongoing attack on the massive city of Mosul.

The troops are special forces who are being used as “forward air controllers,” and are meant primarily to do targeting for US warplanes that are constantly pounding the city from above. Officially, these troops are still being classified as “non-combat.”

Pentagon officials later insisted that “most” of the troops in Iraq, which again is over 6,000 of them, aren’t on the front lines in Mosul. The ones that are, however, seem like they’ll inevitably end up participating in combat, whether they’re classified that way or not.

Now for the update on the Iraqi situation……

Prime Minister Haidar al-Abadi announced the launch of operations to retake Ninewa Province and Mosul from ISIS at dawn on October 17. PM Abadi named Deputy Army Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Abdul al-Amir Jarallah as commander of the operation. The Iraqi Security Forces (ISF) and Peshmerga began offensives on the Khazar-Gwer axis, southeast of Mosul, and moved north from the Qayyarah airbase, retaking several villages. ISIS offered minimal resistance to the joint forces’ advance and may elect to withdraw the bulk of its forces to Mosul to await the city offensive.
Security forces over the past several weeks have moved into position to begin a multi-axis offensive to encircle the city. Units from Counter Terrorism Service (CTS) and Iraqi Army moved to locations in Kurdish-held territory north and northeast of the city, where they have begun to work in parallel with Peshmerga forces around Khazar and Gwer. Units from the Peshmerga affiliated with the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) also moved into primarily Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) terrain around Khazar. Coordination between the KDP and PUK Peshmerga is rare and was likely the result of a still undisclosed agreement. Shi’a militias, including Iranian-backed groups, have deployed into the vicinity, primarily around Qayyarah and Shirqat, where they will likely shadow militia-friendly ISF units northwards. Turkey also responded to the launch of the Mosul operation, moving military forces along the Iraqi border as Turkish President Recep Erdogan maintained Turkey’s right to intervene in Iraq. Coordination between forces in Iraq remains high, although complications may ensue as these forces near the city itself and prospects for Mosul’s post-ISIS administration become more immediate.
Mosul will be a tough nut to crack, at least that is the feeling among those fighting this battle……
Iraqi and regional actors are preparing to assist with or spoil the Iraqi Security Forces’ (ISF) operation to retake Mosul and its environs from ISIS. Prime Minister Haidar al-Abadi announced the start of operations to retake the city on October 17. The ISF began shelling ISIS-held villages south of Mosul, Iraqi Army armored units and Federal Police advanced towards Mosul near Gwer, southeast of Mosul, and Peshmerga units began advancing towards Mosul from Khazar, east of Mosul. The ISF’s operation against ISIS will require security forces to isolate Mosul before it can begin a block-by-block clearing operation in the city itself. The ISF recaptured Shirqat, the last major ISIS-held city on the Mosul-Baghdad highway, on September 22, thereby setting the operational conditions to launch operations for Mosul. The ISF will need to continue its line of effort up the highway while also encircling the city from the north and northeast. ISIS will seek to conduct attrition warfare against the ISF before it arrives in Mosul, leveraging its remaining lines of communication in Anbar, Ninewa, and Syria to shift people and supplies. ISIS will also use the sparsely populated areas on both the eastern and western sides of the Tigris River to launch attacks against recaptured areas and the ISF.
Will a win in Mosul be all that they want?
The fight to liberate Mosul has begun. In fact, it began with a new round of U.S.-led air strikes before the Iraqi announcement that the various elements of Iraqi ground forces were ready to engage. It will be one of the most critical elements of the U.S. military effort to defeat terrorism and violent Islamist extremism, as well as help determine the success of future U.S. efforts to bring some elements of stability to an increasingly more unstable Middle East.
There are so many outcomes to this that not all will be good for the US and its allies…..

Game Of Drones

The antics of candidates have driven the War on Terror from the front pages…..maybe that is a mistake……

There has been lots about the US use of drones for targeted killings….those unmanned vehicles that are being used for just about everything from intel gathering to assassinations……the justification is that they saved soldiers lives….which is true…..but it is also true that they are cheaper than a soldier………..

In case you would like more info on this program there is a list of articles that you could use to further your knowledge…..

Source: Drone Program

But now the Pentagon is dealing with a “secret” weapon of the terrorists…….drones…go figure……

In a development that some security experts say the Pentagon should have seen coming, ISIS is now using drones to kill people on the battlefield. The Guardian reports that according to French media, two Kurdish peshmerga fighters were killed and two French special forces soldiers were badly injured in Iraq last week when a small drone rigged with explosives blew up after it was intercepted and brought down. ISIS has been known to use drones of the kind easily bought online for surveillance, but this is thought to be among the first times the group has successfully used them to attack its enemies.

“We should have been ready for this, and we weren’t,” a robotic weaponry expert at the New America think tank tells the New York Times. With the battle for Mosul looming, US military experts fear that ISIS plans to deploy more explosive-laden drones against coalition troops, though the US has launched at least eight airstrikes in Iraq and Syria over the last 18 months to try to wipe out the group’s drones. The Pentagon is working on ways to combat attacks from small drones and has developed devices to disarm them, though these are not generally available to Iraqi or Kurdish fighters on the front lines.

ISIS is showing an adaptability that the Pentagon has been reluctant to acknowledge……

Even More Troops For Iraq

Slowly but slowly the US has been sending more and more troops to Iraq and the media ignores this….what is more important than our troops in a war zone?

Not Kim and her fucking diamonds……not Trump and his propensity for vulgarity……NOTHING is more important!

Since I reported last month that more US Troops were to be deployed in Iraq ahead of the battle for Mosul……more news has been ignored…..

From the moment he announced, when the latest US war in Iraq began, that there would be “no boots on the ground,” President Obama was not being honest with the American public. Yet after years of trying to revise that to mean something short of no US ground troops, the sheer numbers appear to have overwhelmed the discussion.

Officially, the US had somewhere around 4,500 troops in Iraq. The actual numbers are in excess of 6,000, the discrepancy being the result of an attempt to brand certain troops as “temporary,” despite having no end date for their deployment, as a way to add troops above and beyond caps they’ve long since blown through.

Now, with Pentagon officials openly talking about US troops playing a substantial role in the imminent invasion of Mosul, there is no room for pretense, and officials are just adding more and more troops all the time, hyping them as part of this “vital” invasion.


As the deployments rise the chances of death returning to Americans grows…especially when given the go ahead……

Powerful Shi’ite Muslim cleric Moqtada al-Sadr instructed his followers on Sunday to target U.S. troops deploying to Iraq as part of the military campaign against Islamic State.

U.S. Defense Secretary Ash Carter said on Monday the Pentagon would dispatch 560 additional troops to help Iraqi forces retake the northern city of Mosul in an offensive planned for later this year.

Sadr, who rose to prominence when his Mahdi Army battled U.S. troops after the 2003 invasion, posted the comments on his official website after a follower asked for his response to the announcement.

Source: Iraqi Shi’ite cleric tells followers to target U.S. troops fighting Islamic State | Reuters

Another news item that the MSM in the US seem to overlook……

I find it very pathetic that the lives of the troops means NOTHING to most Americans…..only when it is politically expedient.

Death Of An Icon

My weekend begins with the news of someone that I knew….not personally but rather through the radio while I was serving in Vietnam….anyone that was there will recognize the name of “Hanoi Hanna”…..

She passed away this week……at the age of 85…….

Thinh Thi Ngo, the Vietnamese radio host better known as “Hanoi Hannah,” passed away on Friday at age 85, reports the New York Times. Ngo was a propaganda broadcaster for North Vietnam during the war; her English-language program was designed to convince American soldiers that their presence in Vietnam was wrong. Despite the serious nature of her mission, many who heard her remember her fondly, including Sen. John McCain, who was forced to listen to Ngo’s broadcasts daily during his captivity in the “Hanoi Hilton” POW camp. “She’s a marvelous entertainer,” McCain recalled in 2000. “I’m surprised she didn’t get to Hollywood.”

Ngo’s 30-minute broadcasts ran for a decade, from 1965 to the end of the war in 1975. AFP says Ngo’s programs were an eclectic mix: in soft-spoken English, Ngo would read out names of American soldiers killed that day, interspersed with lessons on Vietnamese history, and music by modern American singers like Bob Dylan and Joan Baez. In a 1994 interview with the New York Times, Ngo said “My work was to make the G.I.s understand that it was not right for them to take part in this war.” Of her moniker, she said: “The Americans like nicknames.”

She was not well loved by US troops would be an understatement….but she was a fixture on our radios…..and yes…an ICON.

Ironically 3 years ago the General of the North Vietnamese Army, Gen. Giap dies at the age of 103…..he also is an icon of the day…..his book, People’s Army, People’s War, was required reading …….

I recently read an interview that he gave about the war in Vietnam…..

The death of Vo Nguyen Giap on October 4, 2013, in his 103rd year, was noted with respect everywhere in the world. General Giap commanded the military forces that freed Vietnam from French colonialism in the 1946–1954 war that ended with the victory at Dien Bien Phu (1954), and that then defeated U.S. imperialist aggression in the 1962–1975 war that ended with liberation of Saigon. The heroic and victorious struggle of Communist Vietnam was a major factor in the growth of anti-capitalist and anti-imperialist movements that shook the previously colonized world, Western Europe, and even the United States.

Source: The United States Has Lost the War: An Interview by General Vo Nguyen Giap |

Yes he was the enemy…but I cannot argue against his tactics……they were effective……

Slowly, all of us vets that served in Vietnam are dying out and soon we will be the forgotten generation along with those of the Korean War…..we already the ignored generation….soon we will be the forgotten.