Moscow to spend over $720 bln on new military aircraft
Russia’s air force will get 1,600 new warplanes and choppers by 2020, announced President Vladimir Putin. The program will cost Moscow some US $723 billion.
“We are talking primarily about providing our forces with state-of-the-art modern technology,” Putin said at an air show in the Moscow Region ahead of the 100th anniversary of the country’s air force. “Over 600 new warplanes and 1,000 helicopters will come into service by 2020 – not mentioning the upgrade to already existing systems.”
Putin thanked industry workers and officers for helping the aviation “endure the difficult times of the 1990’s and early 2000’s.” He also added that the role of a strengthened air force in Russia’s armed forces will be increasing.
The renovation will primarily cover the long-range strategic aviation, tactical aviation, army air force, combined with the introduction of high-precision armament, electronic warfare defense systems, and unmanned reconnaissance aircraft systems.
Speaking at the air show, Putin pointed out that much of this planned work has already begun.
The Russian military faced tremendous spending cuts in the aftermath of the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991. During his presidential campaign, Putin defined the strengthening of the country’s military as one of his primary goals.
Global ‘water war’ threat by 2030 – US intelligence
The Mekong river. One of the predicted sources of international conflict and site for controversial dam.
Nations will cut off rivers to prevent their enemies having access to water downstream, terrorists will blow up dams, and states that cannot provide water for their citizens will collapse. This is the future – as painted by a top US security report.
The Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI), the organization that oversees US intelligence agencies such as the CIA and FBI, was commissioned by President Barack Obama to examine the impact of water scarcity worldwide on US security.
And while the prospect of “water wars” has been touted for decades, it may start to become reality within a decade. The ODNI predicts that by 2040 water demand will outstrip current supply by 40 per cent.
Impoverished volatile states will be worst off
Water shortages “will hinder the ability of key countries to produce food and generate energy, posing a risk to global food markets and hobbling economic growth.” North Africa, the Middle East and South Asia will be hit the hardest, the report states.
And while the coming shortage is a manageable problem for richer countries, it is a deadly “destabilizing factor” in poorer ones. As a rule, economically disadvantaged countries are already prone to political, social and religious turmoil, and failure to provide water for farmers and city dwellers can be the spark for wider “state failure.”
Among those most vulnerable to this scenario are Sudan, Pakistan and Iraq, which are all locked in debilitating civil conflicts, and Somalia, which has effectively ceased to function as a state. ODNI envisages countries restricting water for its own citizens to “pressure populations and suppress separatist elements.” The report predicts many ordinary citizens will have to resort to the kind of purification tablets currently used by soldiers and hikers to obtain clean water.
Most dangerously, there are whole clusters of unstable countries fighting for the same waterways.
The report lists the Nile, which runs through Uganda, Ethiopia, Sudan and Egypt, the Jordan, which runs through Israel and several Arab countries, and the Indus, which is shared by Pakistan and India.
These areas are managed by special commissions, and the report states that “historically, water tensions have led to more water-sharing agreements than violent conflicts.” But once there is not enough water to go around, these fragile pacts may collapse, with “more powerful upstream nations impeding or cutting off downstream flow.”
Even without outright fighting, the ODNI says countries will use water as a tool of political leverage, similar to how gas and oil are used today.
Infrastructure projects will become increasingly politicized: “States will also use their inherent ability to construct and support major water projects to obtain regional influence or preserve their water interests,” the report claims.
Laos’ proposed $3.5 billion Mekong Dam has already been the subject of an international dispute with Cambodia and Vietnam, who say the dam will obliterate their fisheries and agriculture.
Water terrorism threat
And even international compromise is not likely to be enough to ensure water safety.
“Physical infrastructure, including dams, has been used as a convenient and high-publicity target by extremists, terrorists, and rogue states, threatening substantial harm and this will become more likely beyond the next 10 years.”
The report states that an attack on a single point in a water supply, such as a canal or desalinization plant is sufficient to deprive hundreds of thousands of clean water. In return, governments will have to implement costly safety measures that are likely to be of limited use, due to the extensive length of rivers that have to be protected.
The ODNI says there is a decade to tackle the problems before they spiral out of control. It suggests revising international water treaties and investing in superior water purification technologies that will make the increasingly scarce resource plentiful again.
>Concrete message: Iran ‘supershield’ to thwart US ‘superbomb’
Pentagon’s joy at getting tons of money for a bigger, badder bomb was, apparently, premature. Iran claims to have invented “super concrete” – of a type that will stop the Massive Ordnance Penetrator from penetrating…well, anything.
Iran is known for being one of the most earthquake-prone countries in the world. As a result, their scientists have gotten really good at creating ultra-high performance concrete, or UHPC, which is one of the toughest and most rigid building materials in the world. And like any dual-use technology, it can have military applications as well – something the Iranians are keen to utilize.What they’ve done is the exact opposite of that age-old adage: “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”. But it will allegedly allow Iran to effectively stop any potential bombing of strategic facilities that are in the Pentagon’s scope. No breaking, no fixing. Just good old stonewalling of the literal variety.
The move will most likely cause a lot of anxiety in Washington. But the irony is that not only did Iran make an unexpected knight’s move, but it did so by mirroring the steps taken by the US Department of Defense.
With tensions around Iran’s nuclear program mounting, US defense secretary Leon Panetta said the existing modification of the bunker-buster MOP bomb wasn’t up to scratch; that it wouldn’t, in fact, even make a scratch on facilities like the Fordo research center, hidden under 300 feet of Iranian bedrock. So they took the massively limited ordnance penetrator and added $86 million worth of modifications – all to increase the bunker buster’s range.
It’s not known exactly how much money Iran spent on improving their UHPC, but it’s unlikely to be on the same scale as the US. The Pentagon has so far spent over $400 million on a bunker-buster bomb that looks unlikely to ever bust anything other than a hole in the budget.
And one thing is certain: this is a concrete stumbling block for the American military.
While Muslims riot in Afghanistan, murdering soldiers over the accidental burning of Korans – Korans which had been used by terrorists to transmit Islamist messages – it turns out that the U.S. military has routinely burned Bibles in Afghanistan to be more sensitive to Muslims.
As CNN reported back in 2009:
Military personnel threw away, and ultimately burned, confiscated Bibles that were printed in the two most common Afghan languages amid concern they would be used to try to convert Afghans, a Defense Department spokesman said Tuesday. The unsolicited Bibles sent by a church in the United States were confiscated about a year ago at Bagram Air Base in Afghanistan because military rules forbid troops of any religion from proselytizing while deployed there, Lt. Col. Mark Wright said.
So why is it that the United States burns Bibles to cater to Muslims in Afghanistan, but when it burns Korans, we’re supposed to think that we’re insensitive numbskulls? Weren’t we fighting for freedom of religion and speech in Afghanistan? Apparently not. We were just fighting to establish shariah law in our own, special way, according to the Obama Administration.
Catholic League Poised To Go To War With Obama Over Mandatory Birth Control Payments
Donohue Says 70 Million Of His Voters Ready To Alter Presidential Election
— Catholic leaders upped the ante Monday, threatening to challenge the Obama administration over a provision of the new health care law that would require all employers, including religious institutions, to pay for birth control.
As CBS 2’s Marcia Kramer reports, it could affect the presidential elections.
Catholic leaders are furious and determined to harness the voting power of the nation’s 70 million Catholic voters to stop a provision of President Barack Obama’s new heath car reform bill that will force Catholic schools, hospitals and charities to buy birth control pills, abortion-producing drugs and sterilization coverage for their employees.
“Never before, unprecedented in American history, for the federal government to line up against the Roman Catholic Church,” said Catholic League head Bill Donohue.
Already Archbishop Timothy Dolan has spoken out against the law and priests around the country have mobilized, reading letters from the pulpit. Donohue said Catholic officials will stop at nothing to put a stop to it.
“This is going to be fought out with lawsuits, with court decisions, and, dare I say it, maybe even in the streets,” Donohue said.
But pro-choice groups said they will fight the church and fight for the right of employees of Catholic institutions to have birth control and other services paid for.
“The Catholic hierarchy seems to be playing a cynical game of chicken and they don’t seem to care that the health and well being of millions of American woman are what’s at stake here,” National Abortion Rights Action League President Andrea Miller said.
Catholic leaders hope they will have more sway with the White House than usual because it is a presidential election year, hoping that if even a small percentage of Catholics back Obama’s opponent it could cost him the election.
When asked if this issue would affect who he would vote for in November, Wilton, Conn., resident Peter Taylor said, “Potentially, yes. I think it is a very serious issue, very meaningful.”
But not everyone views the situation as dire.
“I would certainly vote for Obama anyway. The church has to get up to date,” Manhattan resident Sue Thomas said.
Sources told Kramer that American bishops are contemplating a massive march on Washington, using people and school kids bused in from all over to protest the law.
‘US builds hospitals in Georgia, readies for war with Iran’
The United States is sponsoring the construction of facilities in Georgia on the threshold of a military conflict in Iran, a member of Georgian opposition movement Public Assembly, Elizbar Javelidze has stated.
According to the academician, that explains why President Mikhail Saakashvili is roaming the republic opening new hospitals in its regions.
“These are 20-bed hospitals…It’s an American project. A big war between the US and Iran is beginning in the Persian Gulf. $5 billion was allocated for the construction of these 20-bed military hospitals,” Javelidze said in an interview with Georgian paper Kviris Kronika (News of the Week), as cited by Newsgeorgia website.
The opposition member stated that the construction is mainly paid from the American pocket.
In addition, airports are being briskly built in Georgia and there are talks of constructing a port for underwater vessels in Kulevi on the eastern Black Sea coast in Georgia.
Javelidze believes that it is all linked to the deployment of US military bases on the Georgian soil. Lazika – one of Saakashvili’s mega-projects, a new city that will be built from a scratch – will be “an American military town”. According to the politician, “a secret airdrome” has already been erected in the town of Marneuli, southern Georgia.
The opposition member wondered who would protect Georgia in case if Iran fires its missiles against US military facilities on the territory of the Caucasian state.
All in all, about 30 new hospitals and medical centers were opened in the former Soviet republic in December last year. The plan is to build over a hundred more.
As for Lazika, the Georgian president announced his ambitious idea to build a second-largest city in Georgia, its western economic and trade center, at the end of 2011. According to the plan – which was slammed by his opponents and many analysts – Saakashvili’s dream-town will become home to at least half a million people within a decade.
There is no electricity bill in Libya; electricity is free for all its citizens.
There is no interest on loans, banks in Libya are state-owned and loans given to all its citizens at zero percent interest by law.
Having a home considered a human right in Libya.
All newlyweds in Libya receive $60,000 dinar (U.S.$50,000) by the government to buy their first apartment so to help start up the family.
Education and medical treatments are free in Libya. Before Gaddafi only 25 percent of Libyans were literate. Today, the figure is 83 percent.
Should Libyans want to take up farming career, they would receive farming land, a farming house, equipments, seeds and livestock to kickstart their farms are all for free.
If Libyans cannot find the education or medical facilities they need, the government funds them to go abroad, for it is not only paid for, but they get a U.S.$2,300/month for accommodation and car allowance.
If a Libyan buys a car, the government subsidizes 50 percent of the price.
The price of petrol in Libya is $0.14 per liter.
Libya has no external debt and its reserves amounting to $150 billion are now frozen globally.
If a Libyan is unable to get employment after graduation the state would pay the average salary of the profession, as if he or she is employed, until employment is found.
A portion of every Libyan oil sale is credited directly to the bank accounts of all Libyan citizens.
A mother who gives birth to a child receive U.S.$5,000.
40 loaves of bread in Libya costs $0.15.
25 percent of Libyans have a university degree.
Gaddafi carried out the world’s largest irrigation project, known as the Great Manmade River project, to make water readily available throughout the desert country.
Obama Advisors Feared a Coup If the Administration Prosecuted War Crimes
Advisors for President-Elect Barack Obama feared the new administration would face a coup if it prosecuted Bush-era war crimes, according to a new report out this morning.
Christopher Edley Jr., law dean at the University of California and a high-ranking member of the Obama transition team, made the revelation during a 9/11 forum at his law school on September 2. Andrew Kreig, director of the D.C.-based Justice Integrity Project, reports that Edley’s comments were in response to questions from Susan Harman, a long-time California peace advocate.
Edley apparently tried to justify Obama’s “look forward, not backwards” policy toward Bush-era lawbreaking. Instead, Kreig writes, Edley revealed the Obama team’s weakness in the face of Republican thuggery:
Edley’s rationale implies that Obama and his team fear the military/national security forces that he is supposed be commanding–and that Republicans have intimidated him right from the start of his presidency even though voters in 2008 rejected Republicans by the largest combined presidential-congressional mandate in recent U.S. history. Edley responded to our request for additional information by providing a description of the transition team’s fears, which we present below as an exclusive email interview. Among his important points is that transition officials, not Obama, agreed that he faced the possibility of a coup.
In their prepared remarks, speakers at the Cal law school, known as Boalt Hall, repeatedly called for accountability and support for the rule of law. Based on the Obama administration’s record on justice issues, Harman said she found the comments “surreal.”
Former Bush Justice Department official John C. Yoo, known as the “torture memo lawyer,” serves as a faculty member at Boalt Hall, perhaps making the occasion seem even more surreal.
Harman decided to ask some tough questions–and she received news-making answers. Reports Kreig:
Edley responded that Obama’s team feared that leadership in the U.S. armed forces, the CIA and NSA might “revolt” if the new Obama administration prosecuted war crimes by U.S. authorities and lower-ranking personnel. Also, Edley told Harman that his fellow decision-makers on Obama’s team feared that a prosecution inquiry could lead to Republican efforts to thwart the Obama agenda in Congress.
Harman shared this account by email and Google Groups with our Justice Integrity Project and others. Among recipients was David Swanson, an antiwar activist who since last January has been organizing a grassroots effort to replace Obama on the Democratic 2012 ticket.
Here is Harman’s account of what transpired on September 2:
I said I was overwhelmed by the surreality of Yoo being on the law faculty . . . when he was singlehandedly responsible for the three worst policies of the Bush Administration. They all burbled about academic freedom and the McCarthy era, and said it isn’t their job to prosecute him. Duh.
Then Dean Chris Edley volunteered that he’d been party to very high-level discussions during Obama’s transition about prosecuting the criminals. He said they decided against it. I asked why. Two reasons: 1) it was thought that the CIA, NSA, and military would revolt, and 2) it was thought the Repugnants would retaliate by blocking every piece of legislation they tried to move (which, of course, they’ve done anyhow).
Afterwards I told him that CIA friends confirmed that Obama would have been in danger, but I added that he bent over backwards to protect the criminals, and gave as an example the DOJ’s defense (state secrets) of Jeppesen (the rendition arm of Boeing) a few days after his inauguration.
He shrugged and said they will never be prosecuted, and that sometimes politics trumps rule of law.
“It must not,” I said.
“It shouldn’t,” he said, and walked off.
This is the Dean of the Berkeley School of Law.
Kreig sought a response from Edley, who confirmed the comments that Harman reported. Here are several points Edley made in his written reply:
Thanks for the opportunity.
1. You can read about the Miller Institute at http://www.law.berkeley.edu/1194.htm. The faculty cochairs of it are me and Prof. David Caron, who also happens to be Honorary President of the American Society of International Law. I don’t know why Ms. Harman thinks Professor Yoo has received a “promotion” or special position.
2. I didn’t hear anyone burbling. I think the panelists, along with me, were perfectly cogent and articulate. I’ve also written about it to my students and alumni several times. Ms. Harman strongly disagrees. She did not specifically engage our points about academic freedom, including the McCarthy era precedents. Those examples are especially important to Californians for whom the ugliness of that era had special significance for Hollywood and state universities. Remember, too, that Berkeley was the home of the Free Speech Movement.
3. Ms. Harman accurately conveyed the substance of my comment about the Obama Transition. I’d add three points: I never discussed these matters with the President Elect; the summary offered by one of the senior national security folks was, “We don’t want to engage in a witch hunt,” to which I replied, “Neither do I, but I also care about the Rule of Law and, whether or not there ultimately are prosecutions, the question of whether laws were broken and where the lines should be drawn deserve to be aired”; that discussion as a whole was brief.
4. My point about politics is simple and non-controversial to people trained in law. I was not referring to politics trumping Law in the sense of President Nixon thinking he could do anything he wanted with respect to the Watergate scandal. I was referring to what every first year law student learns about prosecutorial discretion and the political accountability of prosecutors, which the “system” assumes will be a check on prosecutorial abuses more often than a source of them.
5. A frustrating thing to me about these discussions is that non-academics don’t seem particularly to appreciate the fragility and importance of academic freedom. A university isn’t equipped or competent to do a factual investigation of what took place at DOJ or in secret White House meetings. Nor should it make judgments about what faculty do outside of their professorial duties when there is no evident impermissible impact on their teaching. (For Professor Yoo, there is none.) The right forum investigating and punishing alleged crimes is in the criminal justice system, not a research university. Our job is already tough enough.
6. Finally, another frustrating thing is that advocates are often fierce in their belief that they know what the law is, and they know when someone else’s view is extreme. Your typical law professor is, I think, far more humble. We tend to see multiple sides to important issues, and lots of gray. Even if we are convinced of something, we work hard to understand the counterarguments, just to be sure. If there aren’t any, then MAYBE one could characterize the other position as extreme. My guess is that Professor Yoo’s constitutional theories and statutory interpretation would win at least three votes among current justices of the U.S. Supreme Court. I don’t like it, but that’s my reading of the caselaw. Does 3 out of 9 make it extreme? If so, then a lot of my heroes are or were “extreme.”
“The president actually considered quitting. He really did. But now he’s going on the attack. He wants to give a big F-You to White America-that’s actually one of his primary motivations. You think the race card has been played up before? Just wait. 2012 is gonna be the most brutal political cycle we have ever witnessed. Ever.” WARNING: Adult Content.
Author’s Note: This interview is the first face to face sit down in months with our longtime D.C. political operative we have come to simply call “Insider”. They offer up a unique perspective and insight based upon their decades-long experience as a D.C. insider working within the highest levels of government – including helping to elect Barack Obama in 2008. Here now are the words of Insider, unedited and published in their entirety per their request. This is part one of the interview. WARNING: Adult Content
Ulsterman: It’s been a while hasn’t it? Face to face that is.
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« The Ulsterman Report: Issa Shrugs Off “Pushback” Scandal and Moves Forward on Gunrunner Investigation
Insider: Yes it has. Been busy. Tired. Loving it though. I really do love this. All of this. Gonna miss it. And we have made so much progress. Incredible progress.
Ulsterman: How so? Eric Holder remains at the DOJ. Barack Obama remains president.
Insider: Really? That’s how you put it to me? Holder is at the DOJ – for now. For now, right? Open your eyes. Holder is getting absolutely slammed at every turn. We got people in Congress calling for full investigations now. Calling for Holder to step down. Calling for fucking justice! You didn’t see that last year. You didn’t see that before we started all of this. Something like that doesn’t happen in days or weeks, or even a month or two. It takes fucking time. Who else pointed to the DOJ and said THERE IS THE SCANDAL. Who else? Nobody but me. I gave you that. On a fucking platter I gave you that. So don’t come here now on my invite and point at me and say there hasn’t been any progress. ERIC HOLDER IS GOING DOWN. Ok? It’s happening. Right before our fucking eyes. And like I’ve always told you, Holder is the Obama firewall. Holder is the stop-gap to everything. Every fucking thing. You head up the DOJ you can pretty much stamp out 99% of anything coming at a president. Do you understand that? I know—
Ulsterman:(Interrupts) …I understand what you’ve told me. You were right on about the DOJ. I’ll give you that, deservedly so. And you’re also right, at least from what I can recall, that nobody was honing in on a DOJ scandal before you were. And that’s where we are at now – a significant DOJ scandal. But after months of the scandal first breaking, Eric Holder remains the Attorney General. And the Gunrunner story seems stalled. And I worry it’s gonna go away. Just like the New Black Panther case did.
Insider: First off…the Black Panther thing…(long pause) We, I…I fucked that up. Not just me, but I am to blame for that in part. We showed our hand way too early…we got caught flat footed on it. That case had the potential to be much bigger. We fucked it up. The launch was all wrong. Looking back – whataya gonna do? Spilled fucking milk. But let me make this clear to you right now – Gunrunner is way bigger than the NBP scenario. Way bigger. It is an operation that has gone into full government cover up at the highest levels. THE HIGHEST LEVELS. You got that? I told you months ago that “we got them”. They fucked up. They took the bait and ran with it. And they know it now. But you gotta understand here…you gotta realize, that once we reach a certain stage, we become almost totally dependent on certain people in certain positions of power to now take the ball and run with it. That is almost always the case. And if they drop the ball, if they back off, if they make a deal – it’s over. Done.
Insider: Yeah, he’s certainly a very critical part of this. Initially he was among the most critical. To his credit he seems to have pushed this thing out there as best he can. But I remain cautious of his ultimate intent. Will he allow a secondary figure to take the fall? That could still happen. I haven’t heard that confirmed yet, which is a very good sign, but it could still happen. It’s beyond just Issa now though. Congress – all of Congress, is engaged on this Gunrunner thing, though under the radar where most the deals go down. There is some positioning, posturing, all the same fucking bullshit these clowns do on this stuff, a deal here, a promise there, nod and wink, handshakes, threats, break-ups, it’s pretty incestuous on that hill you know? People have no fucking clue. We’ve all been rode hard and put away wet at one time or another up there—
Ulsterman(interrupts) —Staying with Congressman Issa. Can you just say straight on if you believe he will follow through on bringing a special prosecutor to investigate Gunrunner? Just a simple yes or no on that please…
Insider: That kind of thing will take more than just Darrell Issa. Good news is, it’s forming right now. I’ve told you that already and you have no reason to doubt it. The negotiations are currently underway for a special prosecutor and the signs are looking very-very good on that, which is a huge development for all of this – for what we have been working toward. But let’s not get into more details on that just yet – I don’t intend to help fuck this one up. Just rest assured it’s moving along, and at a much faster pace than I would have thought possible just a month ago.
Ulsterman: Let’s say Holder resigns and what you keep referring to as “Obama’s firewall” is removed. What then?
Insider: (Smiles) What then? Oh…I think you would be satisfied with the result.
Ulsterman: That’s too vague. What then? It makes sense to me that Eric Holder in his position as Attorney General has significant powers – almost unlimited powers it would seem, to protect Barack Obama, Valerie Jarrett, and anyone else needed in order to keep President Obama in power. Even if Holder goes though, couldn’t they simply install someone else in his place to continue that protection?
Insider: Finally you are asking the right questions! And that is EXACTLY what the Obama machine is already attempting to prepare for – Holder’s replacement. Issa and others are watching this stuff right now, with a strong assist from a certain Democrat senator. The problem is, there will be a gap between the protection Eric Holder provides now, and the protection his replacement could provide. Information can then be uncovered that is currently tucked away behind the cloak of the Obama Department of Justice. When Holder is on his way out, the truth is gonna move in. We just need that window of opportunity to make it happen. It’s gonna happen. Just give it a bit more time.
Ulsterman: And then back to Chicago?
Insider: Yes…Chicago. Maybe Hawaii too. (winks)
Ulsterman: You know, there was a time not so long ago where you mocked me for the Birther stuff. Now you keep hinting at something being there. Did you read the book? The Corsi book?
Insider: You keep sinkin’ your teeth into that leg don’t you? A goddamn rabid dog for the Birther shit. Look, I ain’t no expert investigator. That’s not my thing. But I do hear things from time to time. And I know for a fact Nancy Pelosi made mention of a file on the subject. You remember that? When she was heading out the door as Speaker. When her and Obama were not so fucking simpatico? Before whatever deal she struck with him?
Insider: And the last time I sent you a message I mentioned that this Corsi had been brought up by somebody high up in the political food chain, right? That something seemed to be forming on that? Whatever is there it has people concerned. If he wanted to get their attention, it seems he got it. I would still recommend you don’t cozy up to it too close though. I will just say this about your Mr. Corsi…I don’t think he’s entirely right, but there’s a lot of chatter out there indicating he’s not entirely wrong either.
Ulsterman: You keep stringing me along on this thing. You once didn’t want to hear anything related to questions about Obama’s birth record and now you seem more willing to entertain the possibility. Why the change? What do you know?
Insider: Hell – I think I…I think I more than entertain the possibility. I have read some of the stuff you sent me. How much is true or not I can’t say. I really can’t. I have access to what-what some people are saying, or what they are worried about, or what they might be planning. And I have years of experience that helps me put one and two together to try and figure out what is coming down the political pike. And I have associates with access to their own information who agree with me that Barack Obama was a huge fucking mistake for the party and for America. But I don’t have some super secret Obama file. If I did I would most likely already be dead. I don’t know if it’s about his place of birth or if it’s something else that those records could reveal, but what I do know is that Barack Obama is covering something up related to that stuff. The guy is hiding something there. I am sure of that. Everything points to that being the case. The stuff you send me…look, a lot of it I just trash. I admit that. I’ve looked over some of it though, and some of it sounds…possible. Maybe even probable. But I don’t have a hand in any of that. Getting Eric Holder out of the DOJ, defeating Barack Obama in 2012 – that’s my thing. If somebody else wants to prove Obama isn’t who he says he is – more power to them…and join the fucking club.
Ulsterman: If your move to get Eric Holder to step down is not accomplished before the elections, do you think Obama can be defeated?
Insider: Absolutely. And that’s a big change from what I used to say to you isn’t it? I told you and told you Democrats were disgusted over Obama. You remember that? Nobody else was saying that. And now look at what is being reported – Democrats disgusted over Obama. Whispers of Hillary heading out the door. A push to have her run against Obama – something that sadly I have been told she won’t do. More whispers of some other Democrat challenging the president. That information I sent you about the debt ceiling…Obama walking out and threatening Democrats. Threatening to fucking veto Democrats! You messaged me saying I got it wrong. That it was the Republicans he walked out on…right? That’s what you said – that I got it wrong.
Ulsterman: Yes, but in my defense, that is what was reported. That Obama walked out on the Republicans not the Democrats. There was no mention of him walking out on the Democrats, so it did seem—
Insider: (Interrupts) —Seemed? Do you think? Do you think the media wanted to portray the Democrats as clawing out their own eyes? Hell no! If I give you something that detailed you take it to the fucking bank. Got it? President Obama walked out on the Democrats. He threatened to veto them. A veto I told you was complete bullshit. And what did he do – he signed whatever they sent him. Just like I said he would. And after the fact – days after the fact, is when the reports finally came out that Obama left a meeting with the Democratic and Republican leadership, and that he was threatening to veto what they were putting together. I was able to tell you what happened, told you what happened, because I got it from the room. Understand? From the fucking room. If I give you something that specific, it’s the real-time deal. Don’t ever doubt me on that.
Ulsterman: Fair enough. How about you tell me how Obama is defeated in 2012? Let’s assume Holder is still Attorney General – how does Obama lose?
Insider: First, Holder won’t be Attorney General by November 2012. But I’ll leave off on that and talk politics with you. The simple, in it to win it, get your hands dirty with the shit up to your balls politics. My world.
Ulsterman: Absolutely – let’s hear it.
Insider: Hold on then – here we go…The Obama team has already initiated a comprehensive plan of attack for 2012. Just a bit of that has leaked out already. They are developing campaign scenarios based upon the most possible Republican nominees. Now at this point, and here’s one of those specifics you can bank on that I just told you about, so try and pay attention…at this point, Mitt Romney has received the brunt of the Obama team’s focus. And they still believe he will be the likely nominee, which at this point I would agree with. The funding organization the Romney people put together is fucking fantastic. The involvement of Perry – Governor Perry, has them scrambling now though. I don’t believe they actually thought he was going to go for it this time around. I was told the Perry people had leaked to them – the Obama operatives, that Governor Perry was actually not considering a run until 2016. If true, good for them. Classic head fake that has left the Obama machine now doing catch-up to prepare for a possible run against Perry. You want to make those Chicago Obama boys stain their drawers? Tell them the South is about to rise again! (laughs)
None of this is beyond the norm though. Where it gets different for the Obama campaign is what I’ll just call the Obama Plan. They are going way beyond simply working up your typical campaign scenarios against potential opponents. The president – I was told of this about a week ago, maybe two weeks ago…(pause)… the president actually considered quitting. He really did. But now he’s going on the attack. He wants to give a big F-You to White America – that’s actually one of his primary motivations. You think the race card has been played up before? Just wait. 2012 is gonna be the most brutal political cycle we have ever witnessed. Ever.
COMING SOON: The Obama Plan – Part Two. How the Obama campaign intends to win re-election in 2012, and how far Barack Obama is willing to go to make it happen.
It’s already happening – the liberal dream of a perpetual social welfare state where deadbeat liberal constituencies feed off of the work of productive conservative citizens in perpetuity is dying. There’s no doubt about that; the only question left is how long and hard the process will be as the hideous leviathan the utopian liberal establishment has created convulses and dies.
It’s going to die hard. And ugly.
The collapse is well-underway in Europe – Greece has gone from the cradle of democracy to a cesspool of union-fueled mobs – but America faces the same trauma. As the contradictions inherent in the vision of a societal plan based on the notion that an ever-expanding pool of Democratic-voting serfs sucking the wealth away from the mostly Republican-oriented producers who labored to create it become more apparent, the reactions and rear-guard efforts of the terminal liberal elite will grow more extreme.
We are already seeing the liberal elite lash out in anger and frustration at what is a perfect storm of failure. Glenn Reynolds, the legendary Instapundit, chronicles the daily disintegration, while the brilliant Mark Steyn’s cheery new book, After America: Get Ready for Armageddon, drops on August 8, 2011 – I’ll race you to Amazon to get a copy.
As the three components of the liberal establishment – the media, the unions and politicians – rage at the dying of the liberal light, the insanity meter will swing far into the red. It’s already begun. The Tea Party has dared to speak the truth, and the uncomfortable realities it has pointed out have destroyed the bogus consensus that has allowed the debt Titanic to sail giddily on toward the iceberg. That’s why the establishment response is to demonize the popular movement. We’re “terrorists” or “lunatics” or, bizarrely, “hobbits.” Our crime is telling the truth.
Never mind that the Tea Party candidates were absolutely clear about their debt crisis solution when running for election – the voters spoke. Apparently, the only polls that matter get taken around the tables at Manhattan and Georgetown dinner parties – and, oddly, the results are always unanimous in favor of a “compromise” that tries to shore-up the crumbling status quo.
The problem with the Tea Party is not what it does – at best, right now, it can only make a moral and political case; it does not have the numbers to make anything happen without non-Tea Partiers joining it. The problem with the Tea Partiers, in the eyes of the liberal establishment and the pet moderate GOP enablers, is that it dares to point out the indisputable truth that must be hidden at all costs: That the social welfare state is unsustainable and will collapse.
But the demonization campaign does not seem to be working as expected – amazingly, the Tea Party caucus was able to provide the missing spine to the go-along/get-along gang running the House and present a primary-based incentive to the collegial Senate Republicans who have to face the voters next year and don’t want to join booted squish ex-Utah senator Bob Bennett in his new sinecure as the MSM’s go-to, slam-the-conservatives, pseudo-GOP nobody. While the resulting deal was terrible, it was still a massive humiliation for the liberal establishment. They are not in a forgiving mood, and it’s easier to hate on the Tea Party than face the fact that they’ve driven us to bankruptcy.
So when demonization doesn’t work, government lifers like Senator Kerry advocate silencing the opposition. One might think that a United States senator demanding that the media refuse to report the views of his political opponents because too many people are accepting them might stir some outrage in the media. But then, if you did, you probably might believe in unicorns, leprechauns and global warming as well.
Instead of a chorus of outrage at this creepy fascism, the media elite seem to think this is a great idea. But that should not be a surprise. The media – at least the old media (call it the MSM) – is dying, killed off not only by technology that allows conservatives to evade the gates it used to defend to prevent the political discourse from being contaminated with ideas that challenge its foundational liberal premises. It is grasping at a life preserver, trying to take in a few more lungfuls of air before it sinks under forever.
With the establishment politicians far “out of their depth” in response to the coming crisis, watch for more moves by the Left not to resolve the situation but to kill the messenger. Do not put it past the elite to actually try again to limit debate using law and/or regulations. They still salivate at the notion of killing off conservative radio by resurrecting the Orwellian Fairness Doctrine, and the government at one point argued that it had the right to criminally prosecute citizens for publishing a book critical of politicians until it backed down. Note that the MSM strongly supports these forays into fascism – not surprising since they think that the Constitution that allows conservatives’ voice to be heard is a “problem.”
But it will be impossible to regulate conservative opposition out of existence – not just because of the First Amendment but because the coming reckoning will be so severe that it can no longer be swept under the rug. Yet, rug sweeping will become their next strategy. Playing off the demonization tactics, they will continue to attempt to engage moderate – read “squishy” – Republicans toward some sort of “compromise” that will give them just a bit more time before everything comes crashing down. Watch for this when the “Super Commission” comes back with its plan. Their goal – get past November 2012 then hopefully use the crisis to their advantage to turn the ship of state even harder to port.
But that’s a fool’s errand. The DC establishment can ignore math, but math won’t ignore it. There is simply not enough wealth that exists or can be imagined into existence through borrowing to support the redistributionist utopia they seek. Greece is a harbinger of the future. The EU will cobble together a bogus bailout that will keep the Hellenic rowboat afloat just a bit longer before it is swamped, but Zorba best learn to swim because it is going under.
Then the other failed states of Europe – Ireland, Spain, Italy, Portugal – will collapse too, taking with them Europe’s banks and our banks along with them. The only reason we won’t fail first – S&P did not act too early but, rather, far too late in downgrading the US – is that Europe’s social democratic elite is even more delusional than ours.
It’s over. The system must crash and reboot. The choice is a hard landing or a harder landing.
The prescription is clear to anyone looking at the situation, except for the establishment that will not see it because to admit what must be done and embrace it means to wave goodbye to its members’ power, prestige and position. We need to slash spending to less than the revenue we take in – the difference going to pay off the $14 trillion-plus tab. And we need to do it now, not in some hazy future where some other Congress will have to make the tough calls – though reality may just make them for it.
That means a radical return to Constitutional government where the federal government goes back to what it was formed to do – those things set forth in the Constitution and nothing else. The relatively easy part will be zeroing out the cowboy poetry slams, largely unwatched government TV networks and creepy shrimp-on-a-treadmill study grants.
The hard part is the entitlements all of us were promised and none of us will ever see. It means repealing Obamacare, but moreover returning the responsibility for health care to where it belongs – the individual. The same with retirement – Social Security is a ponzi scheme and everyone knows it.
Government student loans, farms subsidies, corporate bailouts, food stamps, Section 8 housing – none of these are federal responsibilities. These should be eliminated not only because they are counterproductive, ineffective and soul-crushing for recipients but because if we don’t do it on our own terms fiscal reality will do it for us cold turkey. And let’s not forget eliminating vast swaths of federal regulations – something that will both free up business and have the added benefit of dumping hundreds of thousands of government loafers off of Uncle Sam’s payroll.
There is a major change coming, and it could get ugly. Union members will do their masters’ bidding with the support of the MSM, threatening violence and maybe committing some. Look for well-planned and carefully-coordinated “spontaneous” mass marches on public buildings by scores of public employee union slugs demanding we keep subsidizing their retirements at full pay at age 50.
Fortunately, again as observed by Glenn Reynolds, the present crop of union activists aren’t the hardscrabble blue collar bruisers of the storied past. Today, most seem to be skinny green tea-sipping public school teachers, naggy Department of Weights & Measures diversity officers, or massive welfare-dispensing office drones clad in form-fitting purple size-XXXXL SEIU t-shirts that were made in China. Not exactly a fearsome crew, unless you’re between them and a muffin.
The Tea Party did not cause what will be a brutal reckoning. It only pointed out the truth and said, “No more” – an unforgivable crime to the people who caused this disaster and want to keep milking the system for as long as possible. The key to getting through the coming trauma – and it will be traumatic, as the social contract the liberals unilaterally imposed is rewritten by an implacable reality – is for the productive citizens of the United States to stand firm and stand fast. In other words, just the way Americans have gotten through every other crisis we’ve faced before.
America’s greatest days need not be in the past. Guided by the Founder’s vision and the principles of the Constitution, we will find that they lie ahead, over just one more hill.
Testimony of James K. Chilton Jr. With regard to The National Security and Federal Lands Protection Act
Submitted to the United States House of Representatives – a joint hearing of the Natural Resources Committee and the Oversight and Government Reform Committee
April 15, 2011
My name is Jim Chilton. I am a 5th generation Arizona rancher. My address is Box 423, 17691 W. Chilton Ranch Road, Arivaca, Arizona 85601. Arivaca is approximately 55 miles southwest of Tucson, Arizona in native mesquite and oak grassland grazed for over 300 years since the explorer priest Fr. Kino brought cattle ranching to the area. The north end of our 50,000-acre ranch is adjacent to the town of Arivaca. The ranch continues south to the international border with Mexico. The ranch includes private property, State School Trust land, three federal grazing permits within the Coronado National Forest and a private land farm.
We have been in the cattle business in Arizona for over 125 years preserving our western ranching customs, culture and heritage dating back to our pioneering ancestors who settled in Arizona Territory in the 1880’s. Our multi-generational responsibility has given us a long-term view of the necessity to be excellent stewards of the grasslands and water resources we respectfully manage in Arizona. The Arizona Cattle Growers’ Association presented me with the Cattleman of the Year award in 2002.
However, we are challenged by the fact that 4 miles of the southern boundary of our ranch is the international border. The border is not signed or marked and consists of a five-strand barbed wire fence similar to most ranch fences. Our ranch house and headquarters are located 19 miles from the border. We have been burglarized twice by drug packers on their way back to Mexico. Our losses have been great and our sense of security in our own country has been severely damaged. We live with weapons near our bed, at the doors, in our vehicles and attached to our saddles.
I am pleased to testify on behalf of the Honorable Rob Bishop’s draft legislation to strengthen the U. S. Border Patrol’s ability to carry out its mission to manage, control and protect U.S. borders at and between official ports of entry. We believe the Border Patrol must be enabled to keep terrorists and terrorist weapons out of the United States. In addition, the Border Patrol, together with other local, state and federal agencies, must not be unduly hampered in their efforts to stop drug runners and undocumented aliens from entering the United States.
It would have been impossible to win World War II if the military had been forced to comply with current laws such as the National Environmental Policy Act, Endangered Species Act, Clean Water Act and dozens of other laws enacted by Congress after World War II. There is no way the war would have been won if the military had been obliged to complete endless Environmental Impact Statements, fund or carry out mitigation projects and suffer through years of radical environmental corporations’ lawsuits and appeals. We must not tie up our national defense at the border with red tape.
National Security demands that drug traffickers, terrorists and undocumented aliens be prevented from entering the United States at the border. Currently, on our ranch these people often travel 10 to 20 miles inside our country before the Border Patrol attempts to apprehend them. We have heard that, a few years ago, the Border Patrol found seven backpacks near our ranch which contained Yemeni Passports. Were the owners of the backpacks tourists or terrorists? We understand that significant numbers of persons apprehended–the ones who are caught–are not just Mexican citizens looking for work. The entrants include others with various motives. We strongly believe the Border Patrol must CONTROL THE BORDER AT THE BORDER.
The Border Patrol reported to the Government Accountability Office that by October 2010 it had control of 873 miles of the nearly 2,000 miles of the Southwest border, or 44%. This is not an acceptable situation for those of us who live along the other thousand-plus miles, nor is it a reassuring report when one considers that terrorists and criminals both have enormous areas through which they can pass. Wouldn’t it make sense to CONTROL THE BORDER AT THE BORDER by completing the border fence, establishing functioning 21st century communications, installing cameras and sensors, using drones, helicopters, satellites and other proven technologies developed by the military at the border rather than to trying to apprehend illegal crossers ten and 20 miles and often 70 to 100 miles inside the border?
Of course, back-up personnel should be deployed for a second and third line of defense to catch crossers who manage to penetrate border controls. As a practical matter, with about 22,500 people guarding our borders (21,000 Border Patrol and 1,500 National Guard) one third might be deployed along the Canadian Border while the balance could patrol the southern border. As a consequence, there could be at least 5 or 6 personnel per mile stationed at or very near the border. Past strategies of letting border crossers of all kinds freely travel well into the United States prior to any attempted interdiction have left us and our neighboring ranchers and communities in a no-man’s land.
The Border Patrol needs to be able to construct roads and place forward operating bases at or very close to the border to CONTROL THE BORDER AT THE BORDER. Currently, the Tucson, Arizona Sector personnel report to work in downtown Tucson, check out weapons and vehicles and then drive between one and a half and three hours to reach the border. The waste of time and the high cost of each officer traveling to and from the border in his or her individual Border Patrol vehicle are outrageous. The largest number of vehicles on the 23-mile Arivaca Road are Border Patrol vehicles going to and from shifts of duty. Perhaps a forward operating base in Arivaca, Sasabe and other places near the border would be a step forward. In summary, the Border Patrol must be able to construct the remainder of the promised fence, construct appropriate access roads, reduce the unacceptable daily commute from a distant city, and construct forward operating bases now without the burden and limitations resulting from existing environmental laws which are often given higher priority than national security.
Checkpoints on highways 30 and 40 miles north of the border should not be permanent since terrorists, druggers and undocumented aliens simply bypass the permanent locations on foot or on secondary roads. Systematically changing the location of checkpoints creates an element of surprise. Permanent checkpoints have proven to funnel illegal traffic into nearby communities forcing residents of border communities including Arivaca, Tubac, Green Valley, and Rio Rico to contend with shootings, robberies, and threatening trespassers. We are told by the Border Patrol that approximately 20% of the undocumented border crossers have criminal records or one in five is a known MS-13 gangster, burglar, murderer or just a common criminal.
There also needs to be a serious look into conflicts between the Border Patrol’s mission and the power of other federal land managers to put their agendas ahead of national security. One example of appalling funding losses faced by the Border Patrol is that Homeland Security had to give US Fish and Wildlife Service $50 million of its funds (which were of course deficit funds borrowed from China in the first place) so US Fish & Wildlife Service could study bats and other wildlife. This interagency agreement was for “mitigation” of the impacts of building the border fence. We find it difficult to understand how bats can be affected by a fence and wonder how such low-priority agendas have been empowered to divert appropriations from national security. The scientific intent of studying bats should be evaluated and prioritized openly in national science funding or Fish and Wildlife funds, not hidden where it raises serious questions of national priorities.
Upon some research we find that the initial $6.8 million “border security fence mitigation projects” include:
Projects to Benefit Environment on the Southwest Border
The First Mitigation Projects:
a. Sasabe Biological Opinion Arizona $2,119,000
b. Organ Pipe Cactus NM Biological Opinion Arizona $980,000
c. San Bernardino Valley Mitigation Arizona $657,480
d. Rio Yaqui Fish Studies Arizona $441,250
e. Peninsular Bighorn Sheep Study California $230,000
f. Coronado NM Agave Restoration Arizona $274,873
g. Northern Aplomado Falcon Reintroduction and Habitat Restoration New Mexico $499,700
h. Border-wide Bat Conservation Arizona $925,000
First, the title, “Projects to Benefit Environment on the Southwest Border” is preposterous in the face of the critical need for actually improving the environment on the southwest border by reducing the cross-country driving by drug packers and the garbage piles mounting in virtually every secluded border canyon. Second, for what purpose is the balance of the $50 million going to be spent ($43,200,000). Are these moneys just waiting for diversion to another “study?” Could these funds be recovered to apply to reducing the national debt?
Our ranching operation has been the proud recipient of two environmental awards and the subject of articles in conservation magazines. We monitor and manage our grasslands and riparian areas to maintain and enhance their biodiversity and productivity. The constant cross-country driving, and attendant damage directly caused by illegal vehicle traffic, visibly affect the environment miles inside the border. This situation is not confined to our ranch but is absolutely typical on every border ranch. To address a bit of the problem, hunting groups conduct huge garbage collection drives on border ranches each year just to make a dent in the plastic milk jugs, plastic bags and unmentionable other items littering the border area. If the Border Patrol CONTROLLED THE BORDER AT THE BORDER the environment 50 and 100 miles into America would no longer suffer this genuine abuse.
Consequently, since we see REAL environmental damage resulting from the failure to CONTROL THE BORDER AT THE BORDER, we view bat studies and all the rest of the supposed “projects to benefit the border environment” with a highly dubious eye. It appears to me that U.S. Fish and Wildlife should be funded by Congress directly to carry out those aspects of its mission deemed genuine priorities and should NOT be statutorily authorized to use a back door to wring money out of other agencies, money that you voted for on the belief it would advance national security and not be diverted to other purposes.
Another serious concern facing border ranchers and residents of border communities is that criminals engaged in human and drug transportation find it convenient to use Wildlife Refuges and Wilderness areas as easy corridors to hide and travel. My fellow rancher, Rob Krentz, was murdered with the killer escaping back to Mexico through the San Bernardino National Refuge. Emphatically, we oppose the designation of any and all new Wilderness Areas, Wildlands or Refuges within 100 miles of the southern border. Such designations are virtual gifts to Mexican drug cartels.
In addition, the Border Patrol must have the ability to immediately construct helicopter landing pads on mountain tops and any other locations so that Mexican cartel scouts occupying mountain tops inside the United States can be easily and quickly rooted out. Waiting for months or years for NEPA analysis, Endangered Species Act concerns and slow federal land management decisions is not compatible with the Border Patrol mission to CONTROL THE BORDER AT THE BORDER.
Unfortunately, Mexican cartel scouts, with the best binoculars, night vision and encrypted satellite phones, have been found to occupy the tops of mountains near our ranch headquarters and other locations all along the border and dozens of miles inside Arizona. As a consequence, the foreign cartel scouts know where the Border Patrol is located at all times and can then carefully guide the druggers and people smugglers through the mountains and valleys without being spotted. Not only do the scouts know where the Border Patrol is at all times, but they can observe me, my brother and our three cowboys riding horseback conducting our daily ranch work. Our houses are also easily monitored from mountains surrounding our headquarters. The cartel scouts must be immediately taken out of action by force if the border is to be secured.
I have an acquaintance who is a retired federal worker whose house has been burglarized 10 times by illegal border crossers on their way back to Mexico after having dumped their drug loads. We have been burglarized twice with serious losses. Many of our neighbors have suffered similar loss of security and property. Most all ranchers in the border area can not leave their houses since experience demonstrates that their homes will certainly be broken into if someone is not there. The Border Patrol must CONTROL THE BORDER AT THE BORDER so that citizens’ civil rights, property rights and human rights are protected. Ranchers along the border can not have peace of mind until the border is secured.
Wow, That Was Fast! Libyan Rebels Have Already Established New Central Bank Of Libya
By 21st Century Wire
The rebels in Libya are in the middle of a life or death civil war and Moammar Gadhafi is still in power and yet somehow the Libyan rebels have had enough time to establish a new Central Bank of Libya and form a new national oil company. Perhaps when this conflict is over those rebels can become time management consultants.
They sure do get a lot done. What a skilled bunch of rebels – they can fight a war during the day and draw up a new central bank and a new national oil company at night without any outside help whatsoever. If only the rest of us were so versatile! But isn’t forming a central bank something that could be done after the civil war is over? According to Bloomberg, the Transitional National Council has “designated the Central Bank of Benghazi as a monetary authority competent in monetary policies in Libya and the appointment of a governor to the Central Bank of Libya, with a temporary headquarters in Benghazi.” Apparently someone felt that it was very important to get pesky matters such as control of the banks and control of the money supply out of the way even before a new government is formed.
Of course it is probably safe to assume that the new Central Bank of Libya will be 100% owned and 100% controlled by the newly liberated people of Libya, isn’t it?
BANKERS REBELS: Western-backed Libyan rebels managed to liase with Goldman Sachs and form a bank? Smells like a City rat.
Most people don’t realize that the previous Central Bank of Libya was 100% state owned. The following is an excerpt from Wikipedia’s article on the former Central Bank of Libya….
The Central Bank of Libya (CBL) is 100% state owned and represents the monetary authority in The Great Socialist People’s Libyan Arab Jamahiriya and enjoys the status of autonomous corporate body. The law establishing the CBL stipulates that the objectives of the central bank shall be to maintain monetary stability in Libya , and to promote the sustained growth of the economy in accordance with the general economic policy of the state.
Since the old Central Bank of Libya was state owned, it was essentially under the control of Moammar Gadhafi. But now that Libya is going to be “free”, the new Central Bank of Libya will be run by Libyans and solely for the benefit of Libyans, right? Of course it is probably safe to assume that will be the case with the new national oil company as well, isn’t it?
Over the past couple of years, Moammar Gadhafi had threatened to nationalize the oil industry in Libya and kick western oil companies out of the country, but now that Libya will be “free” the people of Libya will be able to work hand in hand with “big oil” and this will create a better Libya for everyone.
Of course oil had absolutely nothing to do with why the U.S. “inva—” (scratch that) “initiated a kinetic humanitarian liberty action” in Libya. When Barack Obama looked straight into the camera and told the American people that the war in Libya is in the “strategic interest” of the United States, surely he was not referring to oil. After all, war for oil was a “Bush thing”, right? The Democrats voted for Obama to end wars like this, right? Surely no prominent Democrats will publicly support this war in Libya, right? Surely Barack Obama will end the bombing of Libya if the international community begins to object, right? Obama won a Nobel Peace Prize. He wouldn’t deeply upset the other major powers on the globe and bring us closer to World War III, would he?
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has loudly denounced “coalition strikes on columns of Gaddafi’s forces” and he believes that the U.S. has badly violated the terms of the UN Security Council resolution….
“We consider that intervention by the coalition in what is essentially an internal civil war is not sanctioned by the U.N. Security Council resolution.”
So to cool off rising tensions with the rest of the world, Obama is going to call off the air strikes, right? Well, considering the fact that Obama has such vast foreign policy experience we should all be able to rest easy knowing that Obama will understand exactly what to do.
Meanwhile, the rebels seem to be getting the hang of international trade already. They have even signed an oil deal with Qatar! Rebel “spokesman” Ali Tarhouni has announced that oil exports to Qatar will begin in “less than a week“. Who knew that the rag tag group of rebels in Libya were also masters of banking and international trade? We sure do live in a strange world.
Tonight, Barack Obama told the American people the following….
“Some nations may be able to turn a blind eye to atrocities in other countries. The United States of America is different.”
So now we are going to police all of the atrocities in all of the other countries around the globe? The last time I checked, the government was gunning down protesters in Syria. Is it time to start warming up the Tomahawks? Or do we reserve “humanitarian interventions” only for those nations that have a lot of oil? In fact, atrocities are currently being committed all over Africa and in about a dozen different nations in the Middle East.
Should we institute a draft so that we will have enough young men and women to police the world with? We all have to be ready to serve our country, right? The world is becoming a smaller place every day, and you never know where U.S. “strategic interests” are going to be threatened next. The rest of the world understands that we know best, right? Of course the rest of the world can surely see our good intentions in Libya, can’t they?
Tensions with Russia, China and the rest of the Arab world are certainly going to subside after they all see how selfless our “humanitarian intervention” has been in Libya, don’t you think? In all seriousness, we now live in a world where nothing is stable anymore. Wars and revolutions are breaking out all over the globe, unprecedented natural disasters are happening with alarming frequency and the global economy is on the verge of total collapse.
By interfering in Libya, we are just making things worse. Gadhafi is certainly a horrible dictator, but this was a fight for the Libyan people to sort out.
We promised the rest of the world that we were only going to be setting up a “no fly zone”. By violating the terms of the UN Security Council resolution, we have shown other nations that we cannot be trusted and by our actions we have increased tensions all over the globe.
Monday, March 28, 2011
Libya: War for World Government
“It is a test that the international community has to pass. Failure would shake further the faith of the people’s region in the emerging international order and the primacy of international law.” -Brookings Institute’s “Libya’s Test of the New International Order,” February 2011.
Peaceful protesters become tank commanders and fighter pilots?
Tony Cartalucci, Contributing Writer
While a parade of politicians and pundits cite the “international community,” the UN, and the “Arab street” as giving them the justification to not only wage illegal war on Libya, but to threaten illegal war against Syria as well, it should be remembered that it was neither the UN nor the “international community” that laid the ground work for this campaign.
What started out, supposedly, as spontaneous, simultaneous uprisings across the Middle East, has transformed clearly into an aggressive Western-backed blitzkrieg of destabilization and regime change. This was a plan that was years in the making, talked about in 2007 by then, presidential hopeful, CFR member, and International Crisis Group trustee Wesley Clark.
As hard as our “leadership” tries to act surprised, the current Middle Eastern conflagration has been years in the making.
We now know that the protesters from Tunisia to Egypt had been trained by US created and funded CANVAS of Serbia. We have learned that the US State Department openly admits to providing funding to tech firms to assist protesters across the Middle East and Northern Africa to circumvent cyber-security inside target nations. Perhaps most alarming of all, we now know that the US State Department is also funding corporations like BBC to undermine the governments of China and Iran, revealing the full-scope of their ambitions.
The “international community” that feckless stooges like Joe Lieberman talk about, or his French equal in impotency, Nicolas Sarkozy’s “new post-UNSC 1973 model of world governance” are concepts not born of these “elected representatives,” but rather the product of the corporate think-tanks that hand them their talking points. It is the corporate-financier oligarchy that constitutes the “international community” and who aspires to rule through “world governance.” Their goal is to eliminate national sovereignty and assert their agenda and the laws & regulations to achieve it homogeneously across all national borders.
To see who Lieberman and Sarkozy are channeling, we look to the Brookings Institute report “Libya’s Test of the New International Order” back in February 2011. In it, it talks about the primacy of international law over national sovereignty and considered it being at stake in Libya. Allowing Libya to defy the “international community,” they worried, could ultimately threaten its “resolve and credibility.”
Another telling Brookings Institute report, “Bifurcating the Middle East,” mentions rallying “the Arab street” to confront defiant states like Libya, Syria, and Iran, all of which are mentioned by name. Nowhere was oil mentioned, nor the tremendous profits defense contractors would surely reap, and while these are primary motivators to garner support for the regional campaign within the corporate combine, they are by no means the primary motivators for the campaign itself. The final goal is world government, the elimination of borders, and a monopolistic corporate-financier cartel that can systematically eliminate all challenges to its hegemony – in other words, the dream of all oligarchs since the beginning of time.
In Syria, resistance to the Western-backed opposition is a similar direct challenge to the corporate-financier oligarchs. Nations like Syria, Iran, Libya, Burma, Belarus, and many others are demonized and systematically isolated and undermined not because they are a threat to the world, but because their independence and refusal to acquiesce is an obstacle before a corporate-financier ruled world government.
We are given childish explanations that prey on the most ignorant and feeble of minds as to why we are fighting in Libya, and why we are threatening war with Syria and Iran. Nowhere in Lieberman or Sarkozy’s ranting statements is talk of who these rebels are; that they’ve been fighting on and off against Qaddafi for nearly three decades with US help, that their opposition is based in London and the United States, and that they have overt ties to Al-Qaeda, with rebel leaders themselves openly admitting their affiliations to the terrorist group. We are now told that recently returning to Libya to lead the rebels is Khalifa Hifter, who has spent the last 20 years in “suburban Virginia,” and has spent his time in America lending support to anti-Qaddafi groups.
We will protect your privacy…guaranteed!
After fighting a decade in Afghanistan and Iraq at the cost of nearly 6,000 US lives, supposedly to stop the ubiquitous “Al Qaeda,” an organization the US itself created in the mountains of Afghanistan in the 1980’s to fight the Soviets, we have come full circle, with CIA/Al-Qaeda assets fighting side-by-side in Libya, complete with US air support.
Do regular folks forget that Syria was mentioned as part of George Bush’s “Axis of Evil” and that Obama is merely carrying on a continuous agenda that has transcended administrations up to this very day? Considering the agenda revealed by Wesley Clark in 2007, we see how seamlessly “Obama’s war” against Libya fits in. If we are to believe Obama and Bush are ideological opposites, what other explanation can be given as to why this agenda, scorned by the political left under Bush, has now found a new home in Obama’s administration?
Quite clearly politics in America is but a mere illusion. So to is the “War on Terror,” as the US helps Al-Qaeda sweep westward towards Tripoli. It is all empty rhetoric carrying the agenda of global government forward. Despite losing nearly 6,000 of their brothers in arms, the US military carries on, following orders despite the absolute, overt absurdity of their mission. They are literally providing air support now for the men that helped send their buddies back in pine boxes from Iraq. They do this while the media that lied them into a decade of war now celebrates their enemy, these rebels of Benghazi, as heroes of democracy. Again – we come full circle as the Mujaheddin fighting the Soviets were once “heroes” of the West as well.
None of this makes any sense from the political left or right perspective. None of this makes sense from a West verses “Muslim extremist” perspective. The only perspective from which it makes sense, is if a cartel of corporations has been lying to us all along, saying anything and everything to get us to jump through the appropriate hoops. With their plans becoming bolder, perhaps even desperate, they have begun to mix up their narratives to the extent that they are bombing “Al Qaeda” in Pakistan and giving “Al Qaeda” air support in Libya. They are admittedly strafing civilians from the air in Pakistan, but imposing no fly zones on Qaddafi over unverified claims of doing the same.
As the globalists admittedly strafe civilians in Afghanistan and Pakistan, they have lobbied for war with Libya over verified lies of doing the same.
Indeed, this is not a war of America, the UN, NATO, or the European Union. The feckless politicians that pose as our leadership are merely taking orders from the powers that be – the corporate-financier oligarchs. If we are to frustrate these oligarchs, we would be wise to waste little time on their front men and instead get straight to the issue. Boycott these corporations and systematically replace them on a local level. While they wage war to eliminate the nation state, from its borders down to our own individual rights and liberties, we must wage a campaign to undermine and eliminate them, from their crass consumerist networks that infest our towns, to the parasitic monstrosity that is the international banking system which infests this planet.
While they must wage their battle through murder, lies, and deceit, we must wage our battle through constructive pragmatic solutions, ingenuity, hard work, community, and self-sufficiency. This is not a war for Libya – this is a war for world government, that if won by the globalists, means our defeat as well.
Obama Looking For Ways Around Congress On Gun Policy
First Posted: 03/15/11 04:33 PM Updated: 03/15/11 04:33 PM
With Reporting By Lucia Graves
WASHINGTON — Faced with a Congress hostile to even slight restrictions of Second Amendment rights, the Obama administration is exploring potential changes to gun laws that can be secured strictly through executive action, administration officials say.
PENN and TELLER on the SECOND AMENDMENT
The Department of Justice held the first in what is expected to be a series of meetings on Tuesday afternoon with a group of stakeholders in the ongoing gun-policy debates. Before the meeting, officials said part of the discussion was expected to center around the White House’s options for shaping policy on its own or through its adjoining agencies and departments — on issues ranging from beefing up background checks to encouraging better data-sharing.
Administration officials said talk of executive orders or agency action are among a host of options that President Barack Obama and his advisers are considering. “The purpose of these discussions is to be a productive exchange of good ideas from folks across the spectrum,” one official said. “We think that’s a good place to start.”
Earlier in the day, House Democrats joined New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg to offer another possible starting point, announcing legislation that would make fundamental changes to the nation’s gun background check system. Sponsored by Rep. Carolyn McCarthy (D-N.Y.), a longtime gun control advocate, the bill mirrors one introduced late last month by another New York Democrat, Sen. Chuck Schumer.
“Too often, any serious discussion about guns devolves into ideological arguments that have nothing to do with the real problem,” Bloomberg, a co-founder of the coalition Mayors Against Illegal Guns, told reporters at a press event outside the Capitol. “Our coalition strongly believes in the Second Amendment. We also know from experience that we can keep guns away from dangerous people without imposing burdens on law-abiding gun owners.”
For gun control advocates, however, executive action remains a more promising — albeit more limited — vehicle for reform than Congress. On Monday, The Huffington Post first reported that the Justice Department was convening meetings with groups from across the ideological spectrum in an effort to chart potential policy changes to Second Amendment law.
The discussions were meant to build a broad coalition around the elements of reform Obama had outlined a day earlier in an op-ed for the Arizona Daily Star, including stronger state-to-state coordination, expedited background checks and greater enforcement of the laws already on the books, especially with regard to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System.
MYTH: GUN CONTROL REDUCES CRIME
But the coalition-building didn’t start off on a promising note. The National Rifle Association responded to the op-ed by arguing that Obama had missed the point “entirely” in ignoring lax law enforcement and shortcomings in the nation’s mental health system.
The NRA’s response crystallized what administration officials and gun control advocates have long known to be a major potential roadblock in any reform effort: a policy approach that gives off even the hint of restricting access to firearms will be met with forceful opposition by the gun lobby and its allies.
Even when Democrats attempted to limit the ability of outside interest groups to make anonymous campaign donations, they ultimately exempted the NRA for fear that the group would derail the entire enterprise. And so, the conversation has drifted towards executive action.
“We need tougher laws, but there’s a lot we can and should be doing to enforce the laws we have,” said Mark Glaze, the executive director of Mayors Against Illegal Guns. “Sometimes it’s a question of manpower and money, but in many cases it’s just a question of political will. We think the president knows that and is getting there.”
The extent to which Obama can change gun law without the hand of Congress is not, gun control activists say, wholly insignificant. Though they say they’d prefer longer-lasting, broader legislative responses to shootings like that which occurred in Tucson, Ariz., in early January, there are notable gaps that can be filled with presidential action.
GUN CONTROL LEADS TO HIGH CRIME RATES
With respect to the shooting of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-Ariz.), a Clinton-era rule had prevented the military from reporting to the Federal Bureau of Investigation that the alleged shooter, Jared Loughner, had been rejected as a recruit for failing a drug test. Obama could reverse that without Congress, Glaze and an administration official said.
As for other possible actions that can be taken without Congress, Mayors Against Illegal Guns has compiled a wishlist of sorts, suggesting that the national background-check system enforce the requirement that all federal agencies report individuals forbidden under federal law from purchasing guns; that the White House restructure regulations requiring that the FBI destroy firearm-purchase records after 90 days; that the FBI, DOJ and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives be more aggressive in pursuing federal prosecutions against those individuals who illegally attempted to buy firearms; and that the latter agency ramp up undercover investigations of sales at gun shows.
The Obama administration makes a new demand for records of Americans’ gun purchases.
by Chris W. Cox,
NRA-ILA Exec. Director
If you’re one of the nearly 71 million Americans who live in the four southwest border states, some of your gun purchases could soon be reported to the federal government. If you don’t like that—and no gun owner should—read on, because this may be our first big head-on gun control battle against the Obama administration.
The fight began with a bureaucratically worded “Emergency Notice of Information Collection Under Review,” published in the Dec. 17 “Federal Register”—the daily publication where all proposed federal rules make their debut. It announced that the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives plans to require federal firearms licensees in the border states to begin reporting all transfers “of two or more rifles within any five consecutive business days with the following characteristics: (a) Semi automatic; (b) a caliber greater than .22; and (c) the ability to accept a detachable magazine.”
In other words, a dealer would have to tell the government every time a deer hunter in Sacramento or Amarillo finds a good deal on a pair of semi-auto .30-06s like the popular Remington 7400.
The BATFE estimates that nearly 8,500 dealers will receive those letters; that’s nearly one out of every seven firearm retailers in
the United States today …
Some might ask, “Aren’t multiple rifle sales already reported?” The answer is a definite “No.” For many years, Congress has required dealers to report multiple sales of handguns—and only of handguns. According to one of the basic rules for interpreting laws, when the legislature specifies one thing, it excludes everything else. (This is the same principle your parents applied when they said you could have only a cookie, even if there were also cupcakes and pies on the table.)
For months now, anti-gun activists, members of the media and federal bureaucrats have been urging the BATFE to ignore this principle.
As we’ve reported before (See “End Run,” Feb. 2011), the drumbeat began with New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s group, Mayors Against Illegal Guns, and its “Blueprint for Federal Action on Illegal Guns.” That document was an agenda of 40 ways for the Obama administration to impose new restrictions on gun owners and the gun industry, without bothering to go to Congress.
The “Blueprint” urged the BATFE to “identify the long guns most linked to crime and require dealers to report multiple sales of such guns.” MAIG, of course, is falsely assuming that when a particular type of gun is frequently traced, that must mean the gun is frequently used in crime. That’s a lie heard nearly every day in the gun control debate, despite repeated warnings from the Congressional Research Service and the BATFE itself that tracing is designed to find the source of specific guns, not to collect statistics. (For more information, see “Traces of Truth,” Dec. 2010.)
The push for multiple sales reporting continued with a pair of reports by the Department of Justice’s Inspector General this year. First, a draft report in September noted that multiple sales reports on rifles would have been useful for investigations of supposed gun trafficking to Mexico. While the September draft made no specific recommendations, a final report issued in November urged the BATFE to require multiple sales reports on long guns. The Inspector General recommended that the BATFE “work with the Department [of Justice] to explore options for seeking a requirement for reporting multiple sales of long guns.” The bureau responded that it “concurs” in the recommendation “but notes that this may require a change to the Gun Control Act which is beyond ATF’s and the Department’s authority.”
But there’s a twist. According to the latest installment in the Washington Post’s months-long “Hidden Life of Guns” series, the BATFE itself had already recommended a reporting requirement last spring, months before the Inspector General’s recommendation. The policy, according to the Post, was held up by then-White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel because it would energize gun owners before the midterm elections.
If that’s true—and we certainly don’t always believe the Post—it was a cynical move by Emanuel, a longtime ally of the anti-gun groups. But it would definitely be consistent; after all, President Obama also waited until after the elections to nominate Andrew Traver, another official with long ties to gun-ban activists, as director of the BATFE.
All this maneuvering aside, how can the BATFE try to require something the Congress never authorized?
Showing why it’s now the greatest organized threat to our Second Amendment rights, Mayor Bloomberg’s MAIG pointed the way. MAIG’s “Blueprint” suggested that the new multiple sales reports could be required through “demand letters.” These are letters sent to dealers by the BATFE. According to the provision of the Gun Control Act that authorizes these letters, dealers must submit “all record information required to be kept [under the Gun Control Act] or such lesser record information as the Attorney General in such letter may specify.”
That sounds like an incredibly broad license for anything up to total gun registration based on dealers’ records. But Congress has passed many protections against gun registration, including the Firearms Owners’ Protection Act’s ban on new rules or regulations that would require dealers’ records “to be recorded at or transferred to a facility owned, managed, or controlled by the United States.”
So what does the law really allow? A quick look at history answers that question. The original demand letter provision was a regulation adopted in 1968, under the original Gun Control Act, and added to the U.S. Code in 1986. Back in 1968, Harold Serr, the director of the Treasury Department’s Alcohol and Tobacco Tax Division (the precursor of today’s BATFE) wrote to U.S. Sen. Frank Church of Idaho that “under no circumstances does the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax Division intend to require licensed firearms dealers to submit all records of firearms transactions to a central location. This would be in effect gun registration and the Congress clearly showed its desires in this area when gun legislation was voted on.”
Instead, the demand letter provision was to be used for examining dealers’ records in the course of a criminal investigation, or for tracing guns—two activities that are authorized by other provisions today.
More recently, demand letters have been used for other limited purposes. For example, the BATFE uses this provision to compile annual statistical reports on how many firearms are made and exported by each gun manufacturer. And in 1994, when certain shotguns were reclassified as “destructive devices” under the National Firearms Act, the bureau used the provision to get contact information for buyers of those guns in order to inform them about NFA registration requirements.
More objectionable was the use of demand letters, beginning during the Clinton administration, to get certain dealers to report all used gun transactions for use in future traces. NRA strongly objected to that program and funded litigation against it. Unfortunately, the government won those cases, but even the court decisions stressed how limited the program was. As the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit put it, the demand letter statute “is not a limitless delegation of authority” and “cannot be construed in an open-ended fashion.”
The courts also stressed that the demand letters were only issued to dealers who had supposedly failed to respond quickly to trace requests, or who had high numbers of guns traced quickly to crimes. As flawed as those reasons were, the letters still only went to a few hundred dealers—less than 0.1 percent of the licensees in the United States at the time.
Compare that to the number of dealers slated to receive the new multiple sales letters. The BATFE estimates that nearly 8,500 dealers will receive those letters; that’s nearly one out of every seven firearm retailers in the United States today, including many who are hundreds of miles from the Mexican border. That’s obviously casting way too big of a net, and could lay the groundwork for even broader demands that would truly amount to a gun registration scheme.
That makes this fight a top priority for NRA. Right now, we’re filing comments with the Office of Management and Budget, asking them to deny the proposed “information collection.” But we’ve also begun planning our next move, which will be legislative proposals to limit the “demand letter” authority.
Fortunately, our allies in Congress are already rallying across party lines on this issue. For example, the entire Montana congressional delegation has already weighed in, with Democratic Sens. Max Baucus and Jon Tester calling the proposal “unnecessarily burdensome” and arguing that any further reporting requirement “must be done by Congress through the transparent legislative process.”
Likewise, Montana’s Republican U.S. Rep. Denny Rehberg, joined by 35 House colleagues, including incoming Judiciary Committee Chairman Lamar Smith, R-Texas, blasted the “new, onerous requirements that would inevitably track and catalogue the purchases of law-abiding gun owners,” also denouncing the proposal as an “end run around Congress.”
NRA will make sure all of these arguments are heard on Capitol Hill—and in the courts, if necessary—as this fight goes on.