Sunday, November 18, 2012

Old Jarhead's Political SitRep for November 19, 2012

Old Jarhead's Political SitRep for November 19, 2012
Robert A. Hall
Your one-stop-shop for political news and opinion. Please forward to friends who need to be informed. This SitRep (Military for “Situation Report”) is created by many readers who send me items for inclusion, which I would have likely missed or skipped. And I can only spend at most three hours a night pulling stuff, plus the healthcare or economic stuff that crosses my desk at work. As always, I—and you—owe them thanks and appreciation. I post articles because I think they are of interest and will stimulate thought and discussion. Doing so doesn’t mean that I necessarily agree (or disagree) with every—or any—opinion in the posted article, or that I was able to verify the information presented, which is the responsibility of the author. I try not to post things that are false, or too far a stretch, regardless of the view point, but I don’t always succeed. As always on the Net, or in the legacy media, you must read critically and with skepticism.

Switching Majors
My wife was at the dentist Friday. Her hygienist said her daughter, who has started pre-med, called home and said the kids had been talking. She has decided to switch from medicine to engineers, because with Obama's reelection and thus ObamaCare becoming permanent, she doesn't think medicine is going to offer good opportunities in the future.

Then on Saturday, I met a businessman from Spain. He's on assignment here for a few years, has two more to go. When he found out I work in healthcare, he shook his head. "You Americans are crazy. You have the best healthcare system in the world, and you want to make it like ours. "Yes," I said, "No American politician or celebrity ever goes to Canada or Britain to get treatment for cancer." "Exactly!"

That's the future. Universal coverage, but very long waits to see a doctor.

Worth Reading: Chicken Fried Rice. By Andy Weddington
Excerpt: The only other remarkable moment came when the president, surprisingly, stuck his neck out to defend the honor and work of U. S. Ambassador to the United Nations, Susan Rice. Or at least her work, that's indefensible, on Sunday, September 16th.

Responses to my Petraeus Comment
You question the wisdom of an ex-general serving President Obama. I suppose your prime example of a distinguished general later serving in a Republican administration is Colin Powell. I seem to remember he was forced to tow the White House line contrary to his own good judgment on Iraq, and paid a stiff price with his reputation. --PLM

Liked coddled athletes, when all is given to you, and you are in an historically-protected class, that is your expectation. What people like this general never understand are (in order): culture shift, politics and turf, vulnerability-to-the-rulers (whomsoever they may be), expedience, and finally, the "necessity" for a sacrificial lamb (just ask Oliver North). --DG

I thought the same exact thing about Petraeus. His first mistake was “getting into bed” with the Obama Administration. Perhaps he should have read up on Saul Alinsky, Cloward and Piven, German History and Socialism before he agreed to “join” them. Obama has to destroy the military and the American peoples' trust of them. I believe Michael has been right on from the get go about Obama. So it has to be part of his plan. --GS

Iran's Enhanced Nuclear Capabilities
Excerpt: Iran may be capable of doubling the number of centrifuges dedicated to enriching uranium within days. This was reported by one of three diplomats from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) in conjunction with the issuance of the latest IAEA Iranian Safeguards report issued Friday.

Excerpt: Two days ago, Nigerian security forces claimed to have killed a top Boko Haram militant commander and six of his "lieutenants" in the northeastern city of Maiduguri. Ibn Saleh Ibrahim, a lead suspect in last month's assassination of retired war hero General at his Gwange residence, was reportedly killed along with six of his associates during a fierce clash with the Nigerian Joint Task Force (JTF) and State Security Services (SSS). Boko Haram has not yet commented on whether Ibn Saleh Ibrahim has been killed.

Obama Effort to strip constitutional gun rights may start American Civil War
Excerpt: Are you ready to wake up in an America where your family is defenseless against enemies foreign or domestic? This reality is right around the corner. A day after his reelection, Barack Obama signaled the United Nations that he is ready to sign an Arms Treaty to strip you of your U.S. Second Amendment Constitutional right to bear arms.

Conservatives Launch Papa John’s Appreciation Day
Excerpt: Only the left would react to a business going under by boycotting it. But that’s precisely what the left has tried with Papa John’s, the pizza company whose CEO had the temerity to state that Obamacare costs would necessarily be borne by employees and consumers. The left believes that companies that fire or cut back after President Obama’s re-election are somehow unpatriotic; the facts are that such companies are worried, rightly, about Obama’s treatment of businesses, and with the impact of Obamacare.

Gardener Fights Against Agenda 21 and Wins
Excerpt: Recently, there was an article on Political Outcast about a man named Jason Helvingston in Orlando, Florida who was in trouble with city officials for having a garden in his front yard. It garnered national attention when the local news station reported that he was refusing to tear out his garden. The mayor received thousands of e-mails from around the country, and Helvingston gathered hundreds of signatures to petition the city to change its code to allow his garden.

Smugglers apprehended trying to bring 35 missiles from Libya to Egypt
Excerpt: Border guards foiled an attempt to smuggle 35 missiles coming from Libya on Friday. Armed Forces spokesperson Ahmed Mohamed Ali said on his Facebook account that after intelligence services received information that individuals would attempt to smuggle weapons across the Libya-Egypt border, then Egypt set up the necessary ambushes and patrols to detain them.

Egypt bus crash kills 50 children near Manfalut
Excerpt: Fifty children aged four to six years old and the driver of the school bus they were on were killed when their vehicle was hit by a train in central Egypt on Saturday, officials said.

The Decline and Fall of the American Empire
Excerpt: The most charitable way of explaining the election results of 2012 is that Americans voted for the status quo – for the incumbent President and for a divided Congress. They must enjoy gridlock, partisanship, incompetence, economic stagnation and avoidance of responsibility. And fewer people voted. As I write, with almost all the votes counted, President Obama has won fewer votes than John McCain won in 2008, and more than ten million off his own 2008 total. (This article will make you ponder about the future of this Nation and your children and grandchildren. --GBH)

California Dug Own Grave and May Soon Be Buried In It
Excerpt: The state of California has one of the largest deficits of any state in the union. They also have one of the highest tax rates of any state in the union. Yet it seems that the more they raise taxes the bigger their deficit grows and this is exactly the same plan that Barack Obama has for America.

Manhandling Hostess, Big Labor Costs 18,500 Workers Their Jobs
Excerpt: : Union intransigence and unrealistic expectations at Hostess Brands have forced the bakery to shut its doors permanently and throw 18,500 people out of work. So much for Big Labor caring about the little guy. A down economy and two restructurings in three years left Hostess, maker of Twinkies and Sno Balls, in dire fiscal straits. The company warned its workers, union and nonunion, to make concessions or everyone would go down in a liquidation. (While there is no question that unions are needed and a very legitimate avenue for workers to represent their interests, any group holding power can abuse that power. And some unions do so because of being corrupt, while others do so out of blind, stubborn stupidity. The bakers' union is the clearest example of that to come along in a long time. I never liked Twinkies, but I'll miss their orange flavored cupcakes. And those 18,500 workers will miss a great deal more than snack foods. --Del)

Why France could become the biggest danger to Europe's single currency
Excerpt: THE threat of the euro's collapse has abated for the moment, but putting the single currency right will involve years of pain. The pressure for reform and budget cuts is fiercest in Greece, Portugal, Spain and Italy, which all saw mass strikes and clashes with police this week (see article). But ahead looms a bigger problem that could dwarf any of these: France. The country has always been at the heart of the euro, as of the European Union.

House GOP: Obama officials using secret emails to avoid oversight
Excerpt: The House science committee is demanding the White House explain why top administration officials are using secret e-mail accounts and other techniques to conceal their taxpayer-paid activities from public oversight.

Bam's Benghazi Blues. By Peter Brookes
Excerpt: We don’t have all the details of former CIA Director David Petraeus’ testimony to congressional Intelligence Committees yesterday, but it looks like the American people were grossly misled about the Benghazi attack. Is anyone surprised? You shouldn’t be. The last thing the Obama administration wanted to tell the American public during a tight presidential campaign was that al Qaeda had attacked a US consulate on the 11th anniversary of 9/11, killing four brave Americans.

DHS Hides Records of Failed $1 Bil System from Congress
Excerpt: In an apparent effort to cover up a potential scandal, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has for months refused to provide congressional leaders with records related to a failed program that was quietly nixed after the agency blew $1 billion on it.

Israel’s dilemma-- If Hamas won’t say ‘uncle’ . . . By Benny Avni
Excerpt: Even as Israel boasted impressive military gains against Hamas in Gaza, it struggled yesterday to maintain the original, limited goals of its operation. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Cabinet approved the mobilization of 75,000 reservists — enough for a major land invasion of Gaza. But that was mostly a signal to Hamas that much pain awaits Gazans if their leaders keep firing rockets at Israel.

The Unseen Hand Behind Hamas's Clash With Israel: The terror group targets Tel Aviv and Jerusalem with long-range missiles shipped in from Iran. By Saul Singer
Excerpt: One of the more chilling yet routine phrases used to describe the fighting between Israel and Hamas in recent days is "the current round." As in: "We don't expect many more missiles to hit Tel Aviv during the current round." The term treats warfare like a hurricane—randomly arriving, taking its toll, then departing, but leaving behind the expectation that something similar will return another day.

In Four More Years We'll Be Detroit. By John Ransom 
Excerpt: While we are not at the point yet for the federal government to declare bankruptcy, you may rest assured that that day is coming, because the same forces that are driving Detroit to bankruptcy are driving the US as well. There are fewer people building things and more people demanding things they didn’t build.

Administration Defends Obama Trips To Tyrannical Regimes
Barack Obama’s peaceful overtures to the repressive Islamist world have proved so successful in breeding a kinder, gentler world that he’s taking that same act on the road – to Asia. Obama is scheduled to visit the countries of Burma and Cambodia next week, two countries where human rights are routinely violated. Both countries are known for corruption and sex trafficking. 

Iran Admits Pulling Strings On Gaza Crisis: Source says Islamic regime has 'armed' terrorist groups with chemicals
Excerpt: As the conflict between Israel and the Palestinian Hamas faction is escalating and rockets are hitting Tel Aviv and Jerusalem, Iran announced Friday that its missiles were being used against the Jewish state. Rockets hit Tel Aviv Thursday for the first time since the 1991 Persian Gulf War when Iraqi scuds threatened the city. On Friday, Jerusalem also came under rocket fire from Hamas militants in the Gaza Strip.

MCHF Awards Program
I’m writing to ask your support in getting the word out for the Marine Corps Heritage Foundation’s Awards Program. We are accepting submissions until January 7, 2013. Thank you for sharing the following link with your community to encourage their submissions: 

Donations not accepted by American Red Cross in New York
Excerpt: In her usual pattern, Leominster' s own Ginny White had to get involved in helping families that lost everything in the wake of Hurricane Sandy, so she loaded up a rented truck, and packed it full of relief supplies. With help from local Emergency Management, and firefighters, her truck was filled to the brim, and White left to make the long drive to help. .... "She looked at me and said ,"we don't take this stuff, putting her hand up in the air, and walked away," Ginny said.

Excerpt: [T]he Fajr-5 rocket [was built] by Iran — possibly with Russian and Chinese help — the rockets were first shipped through Syria to the Hezbollah militant group in 2002. Today, an unknown number are now in the hands of Hamas. (…) The rocket is liquid-fueled, has an estimated 45 mile range, and is fired from a mobile launcher. And while it’s more powerful than anything Hamas had before, it’s still unguided and not particularly accurate — the rocket could land anywhere within a one-kilometer radius of its target. (This view from the left is instructive (especially notice the chart showing that Jerusalem is within range of rockets fired from Gaza). Though the author mentions in passing that Israel shouldn’t be condemned for defending itself, he proceeds to proclaim a pox on both their houses since the only real way to defend Israel against the rockets is to go in and destroy them and hold the ground the launchers are planted on. As usual, Israel gets only lip service and should bow to the importance of “peace.” The author either ignores or never knew that “peace” visits only those already in the grave. The living must defend themselves or be granted “peace” by their enemies. Ron P.)

Obama “Urges” Israel To Stop Any Planned Ground Invasion Of Gaza
Excerpt: Israel understands this better than anyone. Calling up 75,000 reserves shows the world that they are prepared to go to war, on two fronts, if need be. The last war with Hamas they only called up 10,000. You think they understand how different the landscape is now thanks to Obama?

Horrors Of Fema Disaster Relief: Exclusive: Chuck Norris applauds private efforts to help Hurricane Sandy victims
Right now, homeless Americans are literally freezing, wrapped in blankets and trash bags as they struggle to survive in FEMA tent cities such as New Jersey’s “Camp Freedom,” which reportedly “resembles a prison camp.” “Sitting there last night you could see your breath,” displaced resident Brian Sotelo told the Asbury Park Press. “At (Pine Belt) the Red Cross made an announcement that they were sending us to permanent structures up here that had just been redone, that had washing machines and hot showers and steady electric, and they sent us to tent city."

Militant Muslims Cutting Out Tongues. By Raymond Ibrahim
Excerpt: A professor of Islamic exegesis at Cairo's preeminent Islamic university, Al Ahzar, Dr. Abdullah Badr, recently proclaimed on Egyptian television that a new day has arrived: apparently from now on, there will be absolutely no more toleration for anyone who speaks against Islam—including people who speak against the implementation of Sharia law and its seventh century punishments.

Excerpt: On Oct. 31, the Taliban-produced Voice of Jihad website ( posted a 35-minute-long video chronicling a "coordinated attack against 6 enemy outposts in one day," which the Taliban claimed had occurred in the hotly contested district of Kamdesh in Nuristan province. Portions of the video were previously released on related insurgent websites on Oct. 19.

Excerpt: How are those airport grope downs, naked body scanners, thefts and humiliation working out for ya at your local airport? Well, now you can not only feel safer when you fly, but you have the comfort of knowing that those “security professionals” of the Transportation Security Administration are federalized, but now they are also unionized.

What Will U.S. Do as Iran Admits It Is Behind Rocket Attacks on Israel?
Excerpt: Israel is under siege again, being pummeled by rockets fired by Hamas in the Gaza Strip and now from the Egyptian Sinai Peninsula. (Nothing! --JB)

Red Flag Over the Atlantic
Excerpt: Terceira, however, has one big attraction for Beijing: Air Base No. 4. Better known as Lajes Field, the facility where Premier Wen’s 747 landed in June is jointly operated by the U.S. Air Force and its Portuguese counterpart. If China controlled the base, the Atlantic would no longer be secure. 

Germany To Offer Syrian Christians Asylum
Excerpt: German politicians from Angela Merkel’s governing Christian Democratic Union (CDU) and its sister Christian Social Union (CSU) told the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung that they are willing to accept Christian Syrians fleeing the violence in their country, in comments due to be published on Sunday. (Many thanks to Julio for this tip. I mentioned yesterday that I had heard a leader of a German party state on Deutsche Welle that Christian Syrians would fit in well in Germany and that this represented a sea change. And then there was that remark by Merkel that Christians are the most persecuted minority. Good signals. The down side? This could signal that German is prepared to intervene militarily in Syria. --Don)

It is hard to feel individually responsible with respect to the invisible processes of a huge and distant government. --John W. Gardner

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