Breaking the Military

From Danny Sjursen:

[D]espite former president Obama’s ongoing promises that “the tide of war is receding” and that America could finally “start nation-building at home,” nothing of the sort occurred then, or is now, under President Trump. Though the U.S. military (thankfully) no longer maintains six-figure troop counts in either Iraq or Afghanistan, American soldiers are still there, as well as serving in 70 percent of the world’s countries in one capacity or another in what has become a “generational war.”..

The military—and the Army in particular—brought some of this upon itself. As conventional ground combat elements (of which the Army owns the preponderance) withdrew from Iraq and Afghanistan, and President Obama signaled a strategic pivot to Asia, U.S. Army leaders became understandably concerned. The Asia pivot would, logically, lean more heavily on the Air Force and Navy—especially when new military doctrine took the (exclusive) name “Air-Sea Battle.” As the economy struggled and budgets tightened, the various service chiefs fought to convince Congress and administration kingmakers of their continued “relevance.” If the Army didn’t appear busy—engaged in a countless number of vital missions—well, it’d be hard to justify its current budget.

It should come as no surprise that around this time the Army touted the versatility of its Regionally Aligned Forces (RAF) brigades—units trained and tailored to support an array of missions for specific geographic combatant commanders…

When Vice President Mike Pence made a surprise holiday season visit to Kabul and publicly praised U.S. forces in Afghanistan, one observer described the crowd as “subdued,” and noted “several troops stood with their arms crossed or their hands folded behind their backs and listened, but did not applaud.”..

The all-volunteer force was always a devil’s bargain: by cutting out the citizenry in the form of a draft out of the equation, presidents, pols, and military leadership could move soldiers around the chessboard with fewer checks on their authority and the decision-making process.

From the comments:

The common ground is that Trump supporters that I have spoken with want less money spent on foreign war, foreign police actions, foreign / military aid, foreign bases…

Trump promised to focus on America – stop immigration, protect American jobs, rebuild infrastructure. Instead he’s fighting wars for Israel and Saudi Arabia…

Let me quickly count how many of these countries are actual threats to the USA… counting… hmmm… weird, came up with zero.

So these servicemen aren’t protecting America. Then they’re really not heroes per se. So what do we call people with guns who go around murdering other people?..

We need universal conscription so that the neocon burden of endless wars may be shared equally with our “diversities.”..

The US military has participated in unconstitutional and illegal wars of aggression, it has accepted and strove to implement unconstitutional and illegal policies of “preventive” wars of choice, and it is actively participating in atrocities such as the collective punishment of Yemen, and is supporting illegal combatants such as the CIA drone operations.

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World Sick of War

The Whole World Is Sick and Tired of US Foreign Policy
Putin in 2011:

The whole world saw him being killed; all bloodied. Is that democracy? And who did it? Drones, including American ones, delivered a strike on his motorcade. Then commandos – who were not supposed to be there – brought in so-called opposition and militants and killed him without trial. I’m not saying that Gaddafi didn’t have to quit, but that should have been left up to the people of Libya to decide through the democratic process.

From the comments:

[J]ust a mental illness suffered by those with a weak mind and no education who cannot accept reality. Religion is only for the intellectually lazy assholes who have no curiosity or knowledge of the real world…

Yeah, without religion mankind would be peaceful and all would be good…

Christian holy wars are extinct…

Nuke Israel…

Now assuming the holy trinity stands we can then say God offered himself up as a sacrifice to himself because a woman made from a mans rib who in turn was made from dirt ate an apple given to her by a talking snake…sorry Im with team human race and Id rather things not go parabolic,war,famine,pestilence and death are not behaviours I condone in a deity…

Christian Zionists are the most brainwashed dupes on the face of the earth…

The Lord Jesus Christ (true Israel’s Messiah) is scorned and hated as much in the modern State of Israel today as He was during the days when the Pharisees crucified Him…

I don’t think that the message that Jesus left us has anything to do with creating a final global war of armageddon…

“God said He’d bless those who bless Israel and curse them who curse it.”

“Israel” in that context referred to the various tribes who were obeying God’s commands as set out in Torah, not the upstart little racist theocracy founded by vicious ethnic-cleansing Judaic supremacists in 1948 after generations of political manoeverings on behalf of various Ashkenazi banking families practicing Pharisaic Talmudism…

Sh**hole morals = sh**hole foreign policy= sh**hole nation.

We reap what we sow…

American people do not control our government anymore.  It now controls us.  It’s been bought and paid for by a handful of theocratic oligarchs.  Sadly, now we need the worlds help to bring sanity back and overthrow our overlords…

IF someone had the guts to bomb Washington, a lot of the world problems would be solved. I think US citizens would probably be grateful…

I apologize to the rest of the world.  Don’t underestimate the rest of us Americans.  We are not giving up.  We know it is wrong.  We are fighting against it…

Heck, even most Americans are sick and tired of the U.S and the proof is recruits have to get $20k signing bonuses to join the military.  Nobody likes the U.S, not even most Americans.

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The Neocon’s Kurdish Box

From Moon of Alabama:

The U.S. move comes at the right time for Syria. The Russian, Turkish, Iranian and Syrian agreement of Astana set up a de-escalation zone in Idleb governorate but committed the parties to continue the fight against al-Qaeda. The agreement was in imminent danger of breaking down as Turkey protested against the current Syrian operation against al-Qaeda in east-Idleb. Turkey cooperates with al-Qaeda to keep its options open for a take-over of some Syrian land. It is also concerned about the north-western Kurdish enclave of Afrin which is protected by Russian forces.

But the U.S.move in the east constitutes a greater threat to Turkey than tiny Afrin. The east is more important to Turkey than Idelb in the west. The whole eastern half of Turkey is now endangered by a Kurdish force at its underbelly. The U.S. move increases Turkey’s incentive to keep the Astana agreement about Idleb intact and to re-unite with Syria, Russia and Iran against the U.S.-Kurdish alliance…

Internally the area consists of a Kurdish core but has nearly as many Arab inhabitants as Kurds. The Kurds are not united, there are many who are against the PKK/YPG and support the Syrian government. Probably half of the Arabs in the area were earlier Islamic State fighters and the other half favors the rule by Damascus. What all Arabs there have in common is hatred for their new Kurdish overlords. This all is fertile ground for an insurgency against the U.S. occupation and its Kurdish YPG proxy forces. It will need only little inducement and support from Damascus, Ankara or elsewhere to draw the U.S. presence into a chaotic fight for survival.

Turkey’s wannabe Sultan Erdogan has long tried to play Russia against the U.S. and vice versa. He ordered Russian air defense systems which will enable him to withstand a U.S. air attack. At the same time he allowed U.S. ships to pass the Bosporus Straits into the Black Sea and to threaten Russia in Crimea even when the Montreux Convention would have allowed him to restrict their passages. The U.S. now leaves him no choice. Russia is the one force that can help him to handle the new threat.

The NATO bigwigs in Brussels must be nervous. Turkey has the second biggest army within NATO. It controls the passage to the Black Sea and with Incirlik the most important NATO airbase in the south-eastern realm. All these give Turkey leverage that it can use when Russia offers it a decent alternative to NATO membership.

From the comments:

US actions in Syria are dictated by a higher power. Israel.

Anything that weakens its neighbours strengthens Israel. In the meanwhile, the
idea seems to be that that border guard will impede passage of Iranians to Syria from Iraq on their way to Israel. The presence of American troops, once in the open makes the area sort of a no man´s land for Syria’s friends and Syria itself. The US can always claim that in attacking the SDF, Syria or whomever would be attacking US Allies which the US is “bound to defend”…

McMaster’s Ph.D. amounted to browsing minutes of meetings of the US top political brass during Vietnam War and then trying to “replay” it. It is not a real academic work…

So the US has recently made its presence in Afghanistan costlier and less sustainable by pissing off Pakistan. Now it locks itself into Kurdistan. Good gig for the aerospace part of the MIC, pity the ground forces…

4000 US boots on the ground in 14 bases, none of which could hold off a sustained assault by rocket fire, MLRS. Air cover for these bases is hourly deconfliction arrangements with Russia. Resupply is by air.

This is like 14 Khe Sahns…

So far, the moderates, the AQ, al Nusra and ISIS have all been humbled by Russian strategy, tactics, munitions and logistical support of Assad and his allies…

This should be over by July 2018 if done right. It’s an election year. The message of a defeat in Syria and bloody exit won’t play well for the neocons…

The USA want Erdogan to beg for his survival as a president…

[R]egarding possible supply routes into SDF territory, the US is absolutely free to land stuff in Basra and haul it towards the Iraqi-Syrian border. Have a look at who controls Iraq’s most important deepwater port in Basra (it’s interesting in its own right, even without the Syria context). Company called NAWAH? Fun fact, both founders/CEOs are heavyweights. One of them is ex-Pentagon and b-o-t-h are “Council on Foreign Relations”…

McMaster was a poor choice for US national security advisor. All he knows is army tactics and American history. He has not been educated in, and has no experience in, foreign affairs…

Here is the US + allies deployment in Syria, and here are Iran’s unimpeded land corridors to the Med…

Imperial planners are abandoning the little caution they’ve employed as their desperation increases. The times are more dangerous than 1962. But unlike then, we now know who the true enemy actually is and where they reside…

[A] lot of the US stupidity is actually the stupidity of Israel, which can send in its suicide fighter (the US) into stupid situations regardless of win or lose, but which also is stuck in its own trap in the Middle East and cannot think of a way out of its existential doom…

Trump is giving the deep state whatever hair brained schemes it wants to pursue secure in the knowledge that these stupid moves will in the long run destroy their hold on the world…

Erdogan is a two-tongued snake, but even he can see (certainly after the recent US-backed coup attempt against his own government) the writings on the wall. The next country in line ready to be cut into pieces isn’t Iran…

If Erdo knows what’s good for him, he’ll soon announce Turkey’s withdrawal from NATO and become firm in alliance with states that respect international law…

Turkey may have US by the balls by staying within NATO.

Turkey Notifies NATO Of Imminent Massive Invasion Of Syria To Fight Kurds

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Kurdish State in Syria

From The Saker:

[T]here are 14 American bases in Syria, of which 12 are located in the north of the country and 2 in the south. What is more, Turkish media outlets have reported about the existence of 13 US arms depots in Kurd territories, which are located in close proximity to American bases…

The bases’ geographical locations correspond with the widened territory of Syrian Kurdistan, the autonomy of which is secured by the Pentagon by deliveries of light and heavy armaments and military vehicles to the Kurds. The arming of Syrian Kurds and the breakaway of this territory corresponds to the new plan of proxy warfare to contain Iran in Syria and the eastern Mediterranean.

From Ziad Fadel:

[T]he U.S. is planning to establish a Kurdish state in Syria in defiance of Turkey’s absolute hostility to the idea.  And, as the Syrian government has pointed out repeatedly, such action would be in violation of international law…

The patsies in all this are the Kurds who are signing on to their own extermination.  Turkey is not going to accept any state for them in Syria or Iraq and the Turks know they have an ally in Dr. Assad.  The Iraqis are just as anxious as the Turks since an effort to build a Kurd state in Syria will almost certainly gain ground in northern Iraq.  Iran, of course, with a Rabelaisian interest in extending its natural gas pipeline to the Syrian littoral, will do whatever must be done to dash American hopes.  That means that the Kurds had better prepare themselves for all-out war with Syria’s, Iraq’s, Turkey’s and Iran’s militaries.  There is no way out of this conclusion even if the U.S. decides it will fight to the last Kurd to make it work…

Netanyahu is committed to a Kurdish rump state.  As Dr. Ja’afari explains it, Zionism needs to Balkanize the Near East into statelets, each with a peculiar religious or ethnic core, in order to justify the apartheid Zionism is practicing against the Palestinians.  Only through the existence of a Maronite state,  a Druze state, an Alawi state, a Sunni state, a Jewish state and a Kurdish state, can the Jews inside Palestine justify the perverse structure of their Warsaw Ghetto nation.  The Kurds are playing right into this illogic and their fate is uglier than that of the Khwarezmian shahs…

[T]here are still remnants of the CIA team which refuses to accept the collapse of their project in Syria which has led to a redirection of the plan to block Iran’s pipeline.  What this means is that Dr. Assad was never the real target – he was only incidental to the plan.  He and his government had to be removed only because they had acquiesced to Teheran’s machinations…

U.S.airbases in the Kurdish area being developed for statehood are within easy reach of Syria’s artillery.  It is even within reach of everybody’s artillery.  If you consider Syria’s vast missile arsenal, which is designed to disable Zionist airbases in Occupied Palestine, it becomes even easier to understand how this plan must fail miserably.

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Duck and Cover

From CounterPunch in May:

A reentry vehicle launched by an ICBM must absorb far more punishment than is the case with shorter-range missiles, and survive temperatures of 7000˚C. It took the United States several years to master the challenge of designing a survivable ICBM reentry vehicle, [11] and we have no solid information on the Hwasong-14’s reentry performance.

A nuclear warhead must be miniaturized to reduce the weight enough for it to be deliverable in a missile. As military technology specialists Markus Schiller and Theodore Postol point out, “It is unlikely that North Korea now has a nuclear weapon that weighs as little as 1000 kg. It is also unlikely that such a first-generation nuclear weapon would be capable of surviving the unavoidable 50 G deceleration during warhead reentry from a range of nearly 10,000 kilometers.”..

As the North Korean foreign ministry observed, “Not a single article or provision in the UN Charter and other international laws stipulates that nuclear test or ballistic rocket launch poses a threat to international peace and security.”

This is merely deep state neocons yanking our chain every couple of weeks to keep us afraid and confused.

Globalism has ensured that no nation possessing nukes will use them in anger. Most of the leaders have their loot stored with the UAE, who would seize it.

You can bet the sermon Sunday at every megachurch in Texas will concern itself with the fulfillment of end time prophecy.

The nuclear threat is a snake oil salesman’s best friend.  Usually, they have to threaten hurricanes or other violence to fill the collection plate.

A system as important as Hawaii’s should be tested from time to time, especially after Pearl Harbor.

Just for fun, we’ve been stirring up trouble around the Syrian town of Armageddon.

Nobody is likely to nuke the USA because they’re too busy laughing.

The Russians and Chinese are into glider-launched multi-stage munitions which approach the target at Mach 5, delivering such kinetic energy that nuclear detonation isn’t necessary.

Nukes are messy, expensive and only useful to frighten children.

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Demise of the Christofascists

From John Michael Greer:

[T]he absurdity of Christians in America supporting a political agenda that directly contradicts the teachings of Christ has begun to sink in, in a big way, among young American Protestants. The devil’s bargain by which the evangelical Protestant churches sold their souls to the Republican Party in exchange for political influence was never destined to have a long shelf life, and it’s starting to stink too strongly for a good many sensitive noses. Donald Trump, interestingly enough, seems to have been the bright orange straw that broke this particular camel’s back; a great many young evangelical Christians, watching their elders turn cheerleader for a man who’s a poster child for every one of the seven deadly sins, have had enough.

I was born in 1960, and shortly thereafter began my general disdain for adults and WASPs in particular.  I was especially appalled by the masters of passive-aggressive behavior, the Quakers.  In school, I was introduced to the kids who belonged to the country clubs, but already had neighbors who spent money like water, introducing me to the sin of envy.

I watched what Jeremy Grantham would describe as the greatest period of cheap energy ever nearly turned into thermonuclear Armageddon.  Imagine my disgust at learning certain of these Christians would hasten such a thing in order to bring about the end times prophecy from Revelations.  It seemed the natural inclination of humanity was destruction.  When the hippies started protesting the Vietnam war, I paid attention.  We lost JFK, MLK and RFK and it looked like the war was finally coming home.

Watergate sealed the deal for me as a cynic, and events have since escalated to galvanize my doubt about adults.  Bill Clinton officially put to shame the office of President, as one of our greatest Republicans, effectively driving the Left to the Right and the Right insane.

Therefore I contend this realization that things were nuts began a long time ago, perhaps the first time someone was convinced by another as to the nature of things.  The Rev. Chris Hedges teaches that taking someone’s version of things is cheating, rather than taking life as it comes and coming to our own conclusions.  I was fortunate to have parents who shared my disillusions and was encouraged to find my own way.  My aversion to anything organized has so far led me to a healthy agnosticism, where I still pick up bits from everything which seem to make sense.

I battled the Tea Party for three years, until it became apparent to everyone that the evangelicals were merely useful idiots for the Libertarian fascists and Zionist warmongers.  We’ve yet to throw off their masters, but the jig has been up for the Christofascists since they came to power, succumbed to the lobbyists and proved they had no idea how to govern.  Things are so bad that legislation in a lot of state houses in written by the Libertarian ALEC.

Evangelical pols were often never trained for politics and merely recipients of Obama backlash.  Of course, we’d just been through eight years of W. mocking the megachurches.  Trump also benefited from Obama, and the impossible Hillary.  But the social conservatives have finally painted themselves in a corner by worshiping materialism and becoming debt slaves.  Sure, the kids are tired of waking up on the floor, but even in my day kids lived in the country club, but couldn’t afford furniture.

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Benighted

From Google:

in a state of pitiful or contemptible intellectual or moral ignorance, typically owing to a lack of opportunity.

Michael Wolff uses the word often in Fire and Fury. It aptly describes the Trump family, and its complete ignorance of politics.  Worse, the POTUS comes off as a malignant narcissist:

Trump, as almost anyone who had ever worked for him appreciated, was, despite what you hoped he might be, Trump—and he would invariably sour on everyone around him.

Most recently, that includes his erstwhile political brain, Steve Bannon, who remains in Trump’s head, despite the ingratitude.  Would that Bannon were the worst of his problems.  For that, beyond Trump’s reported inability to focus on anything for even a few minutes, we must look to his children, and especially his daughter and son-in-law, referred to as Jarvanka.

Having attained the unimaginable—bringing a fierce alt-right, anti-liberal ethnopopulism into a central place in the White House—Bannon found himself face to face with the untenable: undermined by and having to answer to rich, entitled Democrats.

But, unlike the long list of staff who are now gone, they remain, to the continuing detriment of Trump’s legacy.  However, if Wolff is right about the money laundering allegations, Mueller will in time take care of Kushner, at least.  Not that Trump needs any help:

In presidential annals, the firing of FBI director James Comey may be the most consequential move ever made by a modern president acting entirely on his own.

This was a petty and stupid decision which precipitated all that the DOJ will do to put them in jail.

More recently:

[I]t was the Jarvanka idea to try to trade off amnesty for the border wall.

Wolff contends that the 35% of Trump’s base is authoritarian and immune to the logic that campaign promises are going by the way like so many ignored road signs.  However, that is not sufficient to gain re-election and almost certainly means impeachment.

If Wolff is to be believed, a preponderance of evidence suggests POTUS is a child.  He regularly berates everyone, including his children, and his personal assistant, Hope Hicks, only survives by being an enabler.  This derision even extends to his NSA:

“He looks like a beer salesman,” Trump said, announcing that he would hire McMaster but didn’t want to have another meeting with him.

Regarding leaks, it appears many of them come from Trump himself, with his marathon nightly phone calls to billionaires like Rupert Murdoch, who literally feed on his disclosures.  According to Henry Kissinger, the White House has devolved into “a war between the Jews and non-Jews.”  And each faction has its own appointed leaker:

Kushner enlisted Scarborough and Brzezinski in something of a regular morning television Bannon slag-a-thon.

At present, the White House is run by Goldman Sachs alumni , Dina Powell and Gary Cohn.  Of course, this does not bode well for opponents of globalism/neoliberalism.

Regarding the book, I couldn’t put it down, as it reinforces many of the perceptions we have gathered regarding this Black Swan of an administration.  Absent Hillary Clinton as an opponent, neither Trump nor the rumpled Bannon will ever be elected, especially as the latter has recently been divorced from Breitbart.

Michael Wolff, even if you disagree with some of his opinions, has, by illustrating the Trump administration, done the country great service, even if we are powerless to do anything about it.

Remember above all else: narcissists have no political allegiances beyond themselves.

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