Thursday, 16 October 2014

Suddenly El Zorro, then the outpost in Extreme Central Texas, the communications pour in....The War Drums, They're a-beatin'

That coloured in red is from the contributing OROG from "Extreme Central Texas".
That coloured in blue is from "The American Conservative" people, a contrarian, but not rabid radical group, by any means.
That coloured in blood or maroon is El Gringo Viejo
(collaboration by two more OROGs, including Mr. Spaceman)


     I read both of your posts with interest. The chemical munitions article was certainly long enough and was able to destroy any residual confidence I had in our military leadership, especially after reading about the General Amos’ alleged ethical lapses on his resume. 
     Regarding the second post, I think the author is spot on with his conclusion, but his headline was an exaggeration to generate attention.  Currently the Arabs do not have us over the “oil” barrel, but someone is funding ISIS.  It appears increasingly difficult to determine where our erstwhile allies stand regarding ISIS.  Turkey, Oman and Saudi Arabia all seem to be double dealing with objectives inconsistent with defeat the announced enemy.   
    After a decade of investing blood and treasure in Iraq, their army threw down their rifles faster than Italians leaving Ethiopia.  The only player really committed to the defeat of ISIS is Asad and with enough Novocain in the right place, he might administer the rare anal root canal procedure.   
     I would suggest that the hastily summoned coalition be allowed to take the lead with Euros from Europe.  This would allow the U.S. to hone its intelligence and diplomatic skills, hopefully with some advice from Putin.  Possibly, just possibly, the leadership and acumen required to win in the byzantine Middle East is beyond the expertise of a distracted community organizer.
     Think about it another way, if ISIS hasn’t been able to topple Asad, who has had modest assistance; there is a chance that ISIS would not be a major military threat to the U.S.  After all, we have tried every form of involvement except letting the locals do what they are best at, desert population control.  All problems aren’t our problems!
The Secret Agent found at times in Extreme Central Texas or on the High Seas.
 The Middle East Doesn’t Matter

Neither ISIS nor any of America's fair-weather allies are worth the price of the U.S.'s deepening regional commitments.

By SCOTT MCCONNELL • October 15, 2014
State Department photo / Public Domain 
The ISIS rampage through Iraq and much of Syria, roiling Washington and other world capitals, gives rise to an interesting question: Who would win a contest to be named America’s most worthless Mideast ally? Competition is fierce, but three countries are clear frontrunners.
There is Saudi Arabia, whose princely emissaries to Washington have been confidants of presidents and fixtures on the Georgetown party circuit, a country whose rulers and princes possess seemingly unlimited amounts of discretionary income. They have used this wealth to subsidize worldwide the teaching of the most extremist and intolerant variants of Islam, but also to prop up the US defense industry by buying at every opportunity the most elaborate weapons systems we would sell them. It isn’t yet known whether Saudi pilots can actually effectively fly these advanced fighter aircraft under combat conditions. (There is sufficient evidence however that even relatively untrained Saudis can learn to steer a fully loaded 747 into a fixed ground target.)
What do the Saudis do with their shiny F-16′s and spanking new tanks? One might have hoped to see Saudi forces in action against ISIS—which really hasn’t had any success against a military formation that has been systematically trained and adequately armed. But this isn’t happening, probably because Saudi leaders realize that a great many Saudis (a majority?) actually agree with the ISIS ideology, and there is no guarantee they wouldn’t defect to ISIS if called upon to battle it. Among the best few sentences written since the onset of the crisis comes from veteran observer William Pfaff, who pointed to the stakes:
Moreover, is it fully appreciated in Washington that the “New Caliphate” has every intention of taking over the existing role in Islamic society of Saudi Arabia? It wants to conquer and occupy Mecca. If it succeeds, the Saudis themselves will be submitted to the ferocious discipline the ISIS practices. The Saudi ladies who now complain that they are not allowed to drive cars will find themselves in a new world indeed!
Then there is Turkey, an actual NATO member, a Muslim majority country which bridges Asia and Europe, a country with a considerable middle class and millions of educated and highly trained citizens. There are smart people in Washington and beyond who have held great hopes for Turkey: that it might solve the seemingly intractable riddle of how to combine Islam with modern democracy; that it might provide meaningful diplomatic support to the Palestinians; that it could both restrain America from disastrous blunders (as it tried to do in Iraq) and exert its growing influence on behalf of social and scientific progress in the region as a whole.
I shared those hopes, but have to admit they now seem pretty naive. Faced with an aggressive extremist Sunni movement beheading people on its borders, Turkey’s leaders choose to focus on the alleged dangers posed by its own long-restive Kurdish minority, while remaining obsessed with the Alawite (i.e. not Sunni Muslim) regime in neighboring Syria. Turkey has allowed ISIS to be replenished by allowing its own territory to be used as a transit zone for jihadist volunteers. If, as seems plausible at this writing, the Syrian-Kurdish town of Kobani falls while Turkey’s powerful NATO-armed military observes placidly from just over the border, it will be a long time before anyone in Washington will be able to say “our ally Turkey” with a straight face again.
Then there is Israel, usually touted as the best of American friends in the Mideast, if not the best ally any nation has been blessed to have, ever. Recipient of nearly as much American foreign and military aid as the rest of the world combined, Israel, with its crack air force and large stockpile of nuclear weapons, stands unchallenged as the region’s dominant military power. Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu shows up on American news talk shows more than leaders of the rest of the world combined; were it not for John McCain, he would surely log more “Face the Nation” time than any American politician.
Once again, events illustrate what utility Israel has as a regional ally when the crunch comes. Faced with a unforeseen, rapidly moving, and dramatic crisis, Americans watch as Israel does absolutely nothing except antagonize the Muslim world further by announcing new land seizures so more illegal settlements can be built in Jerusalem. Of course this isn’t without precedent; Israel was of no help in the first Iraq crisis, and of course no help in the second—beyond providing a parade of prime-time cheerleaders to encourage George W. Bush in his lurch into war. Indeed, almost by definition Israel is no help in any regional crisis. The Israeli military may well remain formidable, though it is hard to be sure, as its most recent campaigns have been conducted against essentially undefended civilian populations.
What distinguishes Israel from Turkey and Saudi Arabia, is that no one is particularly surprised that it gives no help; it is not expected to do so. Congress will respond anyway with new resolutions demonstrating to major campaign donors its absolute submissiveness to Tel Aviv; perhaps Israelis will be permitted to travel to the U.S. without visas while Israel doesn’t reciprocate the favor, or the Pentagon’s replenishment of Israeli military stocks, exhausted by Gaza bombardment, will be prioritized.
Might there be a silver lining in all this? As we witness the emergence of a violent new force, simple realism forces upon us the fact that the friends we’ve been wooing for decades just don’t see it that way. They may not like ISIS, but for various reasons they have other fish to fry. That should tell us something about the strategic vision underlying our policies for the past two or three decades. (I would give a passing grade to the American Mideast policies pursued during the heat of the Cold War, when strategists considered keeping oil flowing and the region out of the communist orbit to be a pressing national priority, superseding all other considerations. In this they succeeded.)
What silver lining? It’s rooted in the fact that the Mideast may now actually matter much less than we think it does. We do have the option of pretty much ignoring it, if we choose. Its contribution to the world economy is negligible. Its oil will reach the market one way or another. The security and well-being of the American people is not linked to the survival of a Shi’ite regime in Baghdad, a medieval monarch in Riyadh, or, for that matter, a Jewish state in Jerusalem. Recognition of this fact is only beginning to seep into the discourse: Justin Logan argues persuasively here that virtually nothing that goes on in the Middle East can threaten us very much, that no country in the region is worth starting a war over, and that the amount of money we’ve spent combatting terrorism in the region is wildly disproportionate to the actual threat. (It goes without saying that American bombing, with its inevitable “collateral damage,” will create a growing class of Muslims who have concrete reason to want to harm Americans.) In an recent interview, Francis Fukuyama elaborates on this view. 9/11 didn’t “change everything” as many claimed, or shouldn’t have; it was essentially a lucky shot.
“These are really marginal people who survive in countries where you don’t have strong states … Their ability to take over and run a serious country that can master technology and stay at the forefront of great-power politics is almost zero,” he says. Elsewhere he notes that the crisis over ISIS is really a subset of the Sunni-Shia civil war, and America’s ability to have any lasting impact on that is also almost zero.
This perspective—that the Mideast isn’t actually all that important to American security and we should pay much less attention to it—should now become a critical part of the American conversation. The thinkers cited here—Logan and Fukuyama, and one should add the popular blogger Andrew Sullivan, also writing along these lines—are far from knee-jerk “isolationists.” Fukuyama posits particularly that we should use military offshore balancing to ensure that no single power controls the oil fields; and obviously Iran would not want or allow ISIS to shut off its ability to export oil. But beyond that, we can afford to take the region much less seriously.
Unfortunately, there are no major American politicians now ready to make this argument. Rand Paul, regrettably, seems to have folded into a “me too” ISIS hawk after the first atrocity appeared on television, and the entire debate in Washington is now between neocons who want to send American ground troops now, and Obama establishment figures who hope, against much persuasive evidence, that some combination of bombing and special forces and our “coalition partners” will halt the ISIS advance. This narrowing of our true choices is madness.
There is a third, quite realistic, option: ISIS doesn’t matter all that much, and in any case if our “allies” don’t want to fight it, there’s very little we can do about it. If it one day rules Mecca, more the pity for the Saudi women and their driving aspirations. But the impact on American life will be minimal.
Scott McConnell is a founding editor of The American Conservative.

EL Gringo Viejo responds:
    There is broad concurrence with this article on the part of this observer.  You might be surprised that, were I to be advising a real President,  I would further point out that Assad has blustered a bit, but he has managed to stay in front of the bullet.  And he has not been obtusely hostile to the Hebrews.  And he seems to be a fit, if not a close fit, for being a neighbour to Lebanon and Jordan.   If we could simply arm the Kurds heavily, and withdraw completely to something no one else can do....float huge arsenals of destruction in the Mediterranean Sea.   If we were to take Assad, Jordan, the Lesbians, the Hebrews, and the Egyptians....and begin a quiet degradation of the Muslim Brotherhood and Hezbollah,  a very quiet degradation....then there would be a general advance of the good over the bad....and we could float around in the Med being refuelled and making port o' call and "keeping the sea lanes open".  I would let the Persians, the Iraqis (Nebuchadnezzar would never recognise the place), and the Turks stew in their own juices.

     The present Turkish governance wants to get rid of Assad, and the Kurds hate the Turks.   The Turks like ISIS (ISIL) and the Kurds like the Gringos....we can leave it at that.   Things would be substantially improved if we could have a president and secretary level people who can keep their stupid mouths shut, and let the bad guys guess about when and where the Americans might have a "wardrobe malfunction" and blow up an Iranian nuclear fuel factory accidentally.   "I didn't know about it until I read about it in the newspapers this morning."

     The problem we have right now is that there is absolutely no one, all the way down to the level of 3-star, general officer, presently serving, who has the guts, testosterone poisoning sufficient, or the vision to even begin to think in strategic terms or in any terms that might be injurious, in any meaningful way, to Obama's half-brother's group.   That group, of course, is the Muslim Brotherhood specifically and Islam in general.

   Valerie Jarrett has declared this group, the Brotherhood, to be immune from any recrimination, reprisal, judgment, or negative vibing or ohming.   Remember that the best man at the pairing of the robotrons Michelle Robinson (also a construct of the Annenberg "Communications" people) and Barry Soetoro is Barry's half-brother. who also happens to be a ranking Imam, and a chaplain for the Muslim Brotherhood in the Egypt-trans-Gaza-trans-Israel-trans-American prisons-trans-The Levant.
(The following  is readily drawn from an internet source that has never been challenged.  The only problem is  the American publishing industry and  news media is unwilling to address the answers and questions raised by the facts presented below.   It explains why Obama is so willing to use Liberians as human biological bombs as his term comes to an end.   Why else the utter horror expressed by the robotrons under the control of Valerie Jarrett at the idea of sealing off western Africa from having access to the New World by air or sea?


Barack Hussein Obama’s half-brother, Malik, joins terror group Hamas in advocating the destruction of Israel:


Posted on Malik Obama’s WEBSITE, ‘The Barack H. Obama Foundation,’ is a photo of Malik wearing a Hamas scarf (keffiyeh) that bears a well-known Palestinian slogan – ‘Jerusalem is ours – WE ARE COMING!’ It also includes a map of Palestine that says, ‘From the River to the Sea!’ In other words, Malik is saying, ‘there is no Israel.’

Hamas leader Khalid Mash’al wearing the same kind of SHOEBAT  The keffiyeh (or scarf) doesn’t just say, ‘Al Aqsa is ours and is not their temple’. It also says ‘Innana Qadimun’, which translates to mean ‘We are marching forward’. This famous battle command which is a reference to the prophecy that some day the Muslim world will march on Jerusalem and then the trees and stones will cry out, ‘here is a Jew hiding behind me… come O Muslim, come and kill him’.

Hamas leader Khalid Mash’al (Right) wearing the same kind of keffiyeh

It went unreported in the mainstream media that Malik received 501(c)(3) status for his Barack H. Obama Foundation in less than 30 days and had it illegally backdated 38 months by Lois Lerner. Malik’s foundation is tied to a State Sponsor of Terrorism in Sudan. Lois Lerner should be granted immunity and compelled to testify about why she granted tax exempt status to a man who is tied to terrorism and just so happens to be the brother of the President of the United States.


Malik reads and speaks fluent Arabic as do many in his family, like cousin Musa Ismail Obama and uncle Sayyid, who’ve been to at least one prominent Wahhabist university in Saudi Arabia. Barack recited the opening lines of the Arabic call to prayer with a ‘first-rate accent’ according to the New York Times’ Nicholas Kristof.

Musa Obama and Sayyid Obama at Umm al-Qura University.
Musa Obama and Sayyid Obama at Umm al-Qura University

“Everyone’s referring to us as half, quarter,…step, things like that,” he says, displeased even by the taste of those words. “I think that’s like weights and measures. This didn’t even occur to us until he became president, until he gained prominence. And now we’re sort of like celebrities. “But this is a streak of ignorance,” he adds. “Here in Africa we don’t think of each other as ‘half’ this or that. In an extended family, someone is your brother even if he is just in your clan. So I…am Obama.”


Here is Malik in 2010, with al-Dahab in Khartoum, Sudan during the Islamic Da’wa Organization (IDO) conference, (advocating for a new Islamic Caliphate around the world) presided over by Sudan’s terrorist leader Omar al-Bashir, who belongs to the Muslim Brotherhood and is wanted for crimes against humanity:

Malik Obama and Suar al-Dahab.
Malik Obama and Suar al-Dahab

Hiding in plain sight.  The Truth.
El Gringo Viejo