WAR/DRAFT/VETERAN AFFAIRS | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED

WAR/DRAFT/VETERAN AFFAIRS

Dec 08 08:13

US Navy’s Newest Super Carrier Can’t Operate the F-35

When the USS Ford was being built, we all assumed, quite logically, that the ship would be able to operate the F-35 which had been around for twenty years or so, in various stages of development. The timing was looking about right – the carrier and the F-35C would both be ready about the same time. Well, in yet another disappointment for the Ford, it turns out that the carrier wasn’t actually built to operate F-35s. No, this is not an April Fools post or some ComNavOps comedy piece. This is real. The Navy’s newest carrier can’t operate the F-35.

As it turns out, most of the Navy’s carriers and amphibious ships (LHA/LHD) can’t operate the F-35.

Dec 08 08:08

China’s 'Aircraft-Carrier Killer' Missiles Are the Real Deal

Here's What You Need to Remember: A report in China’s Global Times says the missiles operate as part of an integrated network including satellites, radar, reconnaissance assets and warships. This may or may not be true, yet either way, the world, and especially the United States, is taking the threat very seriously.

Several reports say the often-discussed Chinese “carrier-killer” missiles succeeded in destroying moving ships in recent tests, raising new questions about the threat scope and tactical significance of the weapons.

The Chinese DF-21D and DF-26B missiles have long been on the radar at the Pentagon and even greatly informed ongoing studies and debates about the shape, role and configuration of future aircraft carriers. Now, there may be new evidence that the missiles can actually accomplish the stated goal of tracking and destroying moving targets, something which has been a matter of debate, and uncertainty, for quite some time.

Dec 08 07:28

The Air Force's Brand New HH-60W Rescue Helicopters Already Need Major Upgrades

The Air Force only received its first two HH-60W Jolly Green IIs in November, but the service is already looking to upgrade its newest combat rescue helicopters. Many of the proposed additions are already found on helicopters and other platforms across the U.S. military and the service says that the Jolly Green IIs need at least one of the desired improvements to be able to effectively carry out their core combat search and rescue mission set at all. A major reason that these helicopters lack this and many of the other desired capabilities is that they are being built to requirements the Air Force laid out nearly a decade ago.

Dec 08 07:25

Royal Navy's Newest Carrier Suffers 'Embarrassing' Flood, Will Be Docked 6 Months

It's the latest in a series of embarrassing technical and mechanical setbacks for the UK Royal Navy's HMS Prince of Wales aircraft carrier after suffering at least two prior significant water leaks.

"A flood on board the Royal Navy’s newest aircraft carrier HMS Prince of Wales has delayed the program," a military analysis site reports based on Royal Navy statements. "The navy has said it will not have a long-term effect on the regeneration of the UK’s Carrier Strike capability."

Dec 08 07:08

Embarrassment as Russia's super-secret nuclear ‘doomsday plane’ targeted by thieves during routine maintenance, equipment ‘stolen’

Police in southern Russia are investigating after the cargo hatch of a highly secret Ilyushin Il-80 ‘doomsday plane’ was found to be open, and electronic equipment reportedly stolen. The contents of the aircraft are classified.
The Il-80, which was undergoing maintenance in the city of Taganrog, is one of Russia’s most mysterious military jets, known for its ability to survive a nuclear attack. Developed during the Soviet Eva, it was created in case the country’s top leadership needed to evacuate by air. Its sensitive nature means that nobody quite knows what’s onboard the plane – except, perhaps, the thieves who managed to get on board.

According to a source cited by news agency Interfax, the plane was robbed of 39 units of electronic equipment and five radio station boards at the end of last week. The claim was also backed up by TV channel REN, which revealed that law enforcement officers found fingerprints on the cargo hatch and traces of the culprits’ shoes.

Dec 08 06:30

Biden Picks Raytheon Board Member to Run Pentagon

According to a report from Politico, Joe Biden has picked retired Army Gen. Lloyd Austin to head the incoming administration’s Defense Department.

Austin served as the head of US Central Command (CENTCOM) from 2013 to 2016, overseeing US operations in the Middle East. After retiring from the Army in 2016, Austin joined the board of Raytheon, one of the largest US defense contractors. He also serves on the board of the Nucor Corporation, a major US steel producer, and Tenet Healthcare.

Since Austin has not been out of the military for seven years, he will require a waiver from Congress to take the position. President Trump had to secure a waiver for Jim Mattis in 2017, the current administration’s first Pentagon chief, who also served on the board of a US arms company before his appointment.

Dec 07 13:32

US Navy to Form a Second China-Centered Fleet to Encircle China From the South

The US Navy is moving forward with a plan to add a numbered fleet to the Indo-Pacific as part of its efforts to counter China in the region. The plan would resurrect the First Fleet, which was in operation from 1945 to 1973.

The “administrative requirements” to recommission the First Fleet “are in the final stages of coordination,” Capt. Jereal Dorsey, a spokesman for Navy Secretary Kenneth Braithwaite, told Stars and Stripes. Dorsey said Braithwaite is working with other US military chiefs to ensure the Navy maintains “maritime dominance in an era of great power competition.”

Braithwaite first mentioned the idea during a speech on November 17th. He said the US wants to place a new fleet in the “crossroads between the Indian and the Pacific Oceans” to “have an Indo-Pacom footprint.”

Dec 07 13:32

‘World’s best tank’: Russian troops can look forward to 1st deliveries of ‘revolutionary’ T-14 Armata next year, developer says

The Russian army will begin receiving deliveries of the next-generation T-14 Armata battle tank in 2021 according to Sergey Chemezov, the head of defense conglomerate Rostec, who says it’s the most advanced on the planet.

“Serial deliveries of the T-14 Armata tank will begin in 2021,” Chemezov announced. “This is, undoubtedly, the world’s best tank today. In the future, this vehicle will become the main battle tank in the Russian Army.”

The T-14 has already been praised by foreign countries, with a UK military intelligence report in 2016 calling it “the most revolutionary step change in tank design in the last half-century.”

Dec 07 13:16

This young woman explains what is really going on…

Dec 07 08:53

The Bones of Station H

One week before the attack on Pearl Harbor, a US Navy listening post on the other side of Oahu intercepted Admiral Yamamoto's message to the AJapanese fleet to sail to Hawaii. Today, the remains of that radio station can still be seen.

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Dec 07 08:25

Pearl Harbor: An Orchestrated Event?

Today is the 79th anniversary of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, the event that brought the US into the war against Germany and Japan. Eight American battleships were sunk or put out of action, and about 3,600 American sailors were killed or wounded.

Washington needed scapegoats, and Admiral Husband Kimmel and General Walter Short were saddled with the blame for American unpreparedness for the Pearl Harbor attack. As time passed circumstantial evidence came to light that President Roosevelt knew of the attack and permitted the devastation in order that the American people would be so outraged by the attack as to give up their resistance to being dragged into another European war. The controversy continued for some years. I am unsure that it was ever resolved.

Dec 07 08:24

FDR provoked the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor

Dec 06 08:36

Top US General Calls for More Hi-Tech Weapons to Compete With China

On Thursday, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Mark Milley said the US should focus more on hi-tech battle equipment to maintain superiority over China. The commander said the US should utilize things like artificial intelligence, robotics, and hypersonic weapons.

“We are in the middle of a fundamental change in the character of war,” Milley said at a virtual conference. He said whoever masters precision-guided missiles, drones, and other advanced equipment would be “decisive” in war.

“If you put in artificial intelligence and you do man-machine teaming, add that to robotics, put in precision munitions and the ability to sense and see, throw in a few hypersonic weapons, and you’ve got a fundamental shift,” Milley said.

Dec 06 08:35

America sold $175 billion in weapons abroad in FY20

The U.S. sold $175 billion in weapons to foreign partners and allies in fiscal 2020, a 2.8 percent rise from the previous year’s total, according to a Friday announcement from the Defense and State departments.

The total comes at the end of the Trump administration, which made increasing arms exports a key part of its economic growth platform.

Export licenses via the Direct Commercial Sales program totaled $124.3 billion in FY20, up from $114.7 billion the previous year. A series of reforms, started under the Obama administration and continued under the Trump team, has pushed more defense articles into the commercial sales realm.

Dec 06 08:34

Envoy: UAE Would ‘Reluctantly’ Find Weapons Elsewhere If US Does Not Supply

With the Senate preparing to vote on a series of resolutions that seek to block a massive $23 billion weapons sale to the UAE, Abu Dhabi’s ambassador to the US said the UAE would seek weapons elsewhere if need be.

“We would rather have the best US-equipment or we will reluctantly find it from other sources, even if less capable,” UAE envoy Yousef al-Otaiba said on Thursday. Al-Otaiba made an argument President Trump frequently makes about arms sales to Gulf states. The envoy said the sale would “support tens of thousands of US jobs.”

Al-Otaiba also argued that the deal would help the UAE share the burden of defense in the region. “It is about advancing a more stable and secure Middle East. It enables the UAE to take on more of the regional burden for collective security, freeing US assets for other global challenges — a bipartisan US priority,” he said.

Dec 06 07:31

Thousands killed in Ethiopia’s conflict, Tigray side asserts

Several thousand combatants have been killed in Ethiopia’s embattled Tigray region, an official with the fugitive regional government is asserting, although claims remain difficult to verify after a month of fighting between Ethiopian and regional forces.

Getachew Reda, a senior adviser to the Tigray leader, in an interview with Tigray TV aired Thursday urged young people and others in the region to “rise and deploy to battle in tens of thousands.” His call came days after Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed over the weekend declared victory in a power struggle that exploded between his government and the heavily armed regional one that once dominated Ethiopia’s ruling coalition.

Dec 05 08:27

‘Possible’ UAE F-35 deal can be inked before Trump administration ends, says top arms officials

A top arms sale official believes it is “possible” to get the United Arab Emirates on contract to purchase the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter before the end of the Trump administration.

Speaking to reporters Friday, Heidi Grant, the head of the Defense Security Cooperation Agency, acknowledged that such a timeline is logistically feasible but noted it would likely require quick action from the UAE.

“If you ask if it’s possible, absolutely it’s possible,” Grant said in response to a question about whether the F-35s could be on contract by Jan. 20, when President-elect Joe Biden will be inaugurated. “But we don’t control it. We are waiting on the Congress benchmark, then we are going to wait when we offer it to the Emiratis, and it’s up to them as far as timeline. But it’s possible.”

Dec 05 08:24

Pentagon blocks visits to military spy agencies by Biden transition team

The Trump administration has refused to allow members of President-elect Joe Biden’s transition team to meet with officials at U.S. intelligence agencies that are controlled by the Pentagon, undermining prospects for a smooth transfer of power, current and former U.S. officials said.

The impasse has prevented the Biden team from engaging with leaders at the National Security Agency, the Defense Intelligence Agency and other military-run spy services with classified budgets and global espionage platforms.

The Defense Department rejected requests from the Biden team this week, officials said, despite a General Services Administration decision Nov. 23 that cleared the way for federal agencies to meet with representatives of the incoming administration.

Dec 05 08:12

War in Ethiopia's Tigray wrenches families apart

Ethiopian farmer Gebrahid Welderfael said he last saw his wife and 18-year-old daughter in the sewer in his village in the Tigray region where the family had taken shelter from explosions and gunfire.

When he returned with his younger children from a quick trip to their house to collect supplies, they were gone, lost in the chaos of a conflict in the northern region where government and rebellious Tigray forces have been fighting since Nov 4.

Unable to find them, the 45-year-old walked with his younger daughter and two young sons to the Um Rakuba camp across the border to Sudan, where more than 45,000 have fled the conflict.

Dec 04 07:29

SECOND KARABAKH-WAR RESHAPES TRANSPORT CORRIDORS IN SOUTH CAUCASUS

The Second Nagorno-Karabakh War not only led to a shift of the military political balance of power in the South Caucasus, but the agreements reached to put an end to it would potentially greatly reshape transport links, and thus freight and passenger flows in the region. The deployment of Russian peacekeepers to Azerbaijan, the growth of Turkish-Azerbaijani cooperation and the decline of the project of the Armenian Nagorno-Karabakh Republic are reactivating several strategic directions that have been inactive for almost 30 years and regional players are now publicly declaring plans regarding the creation of new economic corridors.

Dec 03 12:52

Nancy Pelosi and Mitch McConnell rush to vote through Defense bill in face of Donald Trump's threat to veto it unless it also ends internet giants' Section 230 protection

Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell and Speaker Nancy Pelosi are preparing to move a crucial defense bill to a vote in their respective chambers without President Donald Trump's demand for a provision to repeal legal protections enjoyed by tech companies.

It will also contain a bipartisan provision - disliked by the president - that will allow military bases named for Confederate heroes to be renamed.

The move would essentially dare Trump to veto the billion dollar legislation that includes funding for the troops and a pay raise for service members.

Dec 03 08:54

The Marine Corps' First Carrier-Capable F-35 Squadron Is Ready for Combat

The Marine Corps' first F-35C carrier-variant Joint Strike Fighter squadron has officially been declared ready for combat.

Marine Fighter Attack Squadron (VMFA) 314 of Marine Corps Air Station Miramar, California, said its F-35Cs have achieved initial operational capability, or IOC, authorizing the aircraft for worldwide carrier deployment operations, according to a service release.

Dec 03 08:51

Navy Brings Back US Atlantic Fleet as Russian Threats Intensify

The Navy's fleet structure is not set up to deal with today's challenges, the service's top civilian leader told lawmakers on Wednesday.

Terrorism is no longer the biggest threat facing the U.S., Navy Secretary Kenneth Braithwaite said during a hearing on Navy and Marine Corps readiness. Threats from Russia and China are increasing, and the Navy must reorganize to address them.

"To meet the unique maritime challenges of the Atlantic theater, we will rename Fleet Forces Command as the U.S. Atlantic Fleet," Braithwaite said. "We will refocus our naval forces in this important region on their original mission -- controlling the maritime approaches to the United States and to those of our allies."

Dec 03 08:50

Marine tankers can say goodbye to the Corps a year ahead of schedule

The Marine Corps has said goodbye to its tanks, and so it’s letting Marine tankers say goodbye to the Corps sooner than later.

Marines with the military occupational specialties of Armor Marine (1812), Senior armor staff non-commissioned officer (1869), Main Battle Tank repairer/technician (2146), or Tank officer (1802) will be allowed to get out of the service up to a year early, according to a Marine administrative message due out this week.

“The fiscal year 2021 Early Release Programs are aligned with the Marine Corps’ Force Design and further aligns us with the direction of the National Defense Strategy,” Col. Christopher Escamilla, branch head for Marine Corps Plans, Programs & Budget, said in a statement, adding that the service would “begin a surgical reduction in personnel and realignment of specific capabilities and units.”

Dec 03 08:19

The killer mines of Libya: How they work, what they do

Fourteen months of fighting in Tripoli has turned the Libyan capital’s neighbourhoods into death traps.

Tonnes of ordnance remain from clashes between the Libyan National Army (LNA) and the UN-recognised Government of National Accord (GNA), which controls the city.

Most dangerous, however, are the mines laid by LNA forces and now being extricated by GNA military engineers. More than 70 civilians, including children, have been killed by blasts, with at least 125 people wounded. Injuries include loss of limbs.

Dec 03 08:12

Air Force To Build Alternate Airbase On Tinian Island In Case Guam Gets Knocked Out

According to reports, the Department of Defense is moving ahead with plans to formally build a backup air base at Tinian Island, located just 100 miles to the north of its giant and highly strategic U.S. military airbase on Guam, known as Andersen Air Force Base. This comes as the Pentagon is working to expand its existing airfields located deep in the Pacific and even create new ones that it could use during a major peer-state clash, namely with China, in the vast region. It is all part of an emerging distributed combat operations strategy that will likely be as much about survival as about getting an advantage on the enemy, at least during the opening stages of a potential conflict in the Pacific Theater. Anderson Air Force Base is so key to U.S. strategy that the possibility that a natural disaster could knock out flight operations in the entire region is also a driving factor behind this initiative.

Dec 03 08:12

Thousands of Marines Tested for LSD After Drug Problem Emerges at Infantry Unit

The North Carolina-based 2nd Marine Division has a drug problem.

That's how Maj. Gen. Francis Donovan put it in an unusually blunt Marine Corps news release issued by the service this week. The division has changed up the way it screens for drugs after catching several Marines using lysergic acid diethylamide, or LSD.

"We are committed to identifying violators of our ethos," Donovan said in a statement. "The vast majority of Marines within the 2d Marine Division routinely uphold our core values, and they deserve to know that the Marines to their left and right are doing the same."

Dec 02 08:42

‘Like horse-mounted cavalry against tanks’: Turkey has perfected new, deadly way to wage war, using militarized ‘drone swarms’

From Syria to Libya to Nagorno-Karabakh, this new method of military offense has been brutally effective. We are witnessing a revolution in the history of warfare, one that is causing panic, particularly in Europe.

In an analysis written for the European Council on Foreign Relations, Gustav Gressel, a senior policy fellow, argues that the extensive (and successful) use of military drones by Azerbaijan in its recent conflict with Armenia over Nagorno-Karabakh holds “distinct lessons for how well Europe can defend itself.”

Dec 02 08:30

Government announces weapons sales with six nations worth combined $1.55B

The State Department on Tuesday announced a six new weapons sales potentially worth a combined $1.55 billion, pushing the deals forward ahead of the transition to the Biden administration next month.

The foreign military sales include torpedoes for Brazil, vehicles for Croatia and Lebanon, upgrades for Canadian aircraft, training for the Saudi military and weapons systems for South Korean ships, according to the Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA).

Congress, which was notified of the sales on Monday, now has a 30-day window to block any of the deals if it wants to.

Dec 02 08:05

Turkey, Azerbaijan drone success should worry Europe, says European Council analyst

The success in drone warfare conducted by Turkey and Azerbaijan is a cause of concern for Europe and should force it to consider its options, a senior policy fellow and analyst at the European Council on Foreign Relations (ECFR) has warned.

In the analysis written by Gustav Gressel, he noted that Azerbaijan's victory over Armenia in the renewed conflict for the Nagorno-Karabakh region offers "distinct lessons for how well Europe can defend itself".

During that 44-day conflict, in which Armenia and its militias suffered the loss of thousands of troops and military vehicles, one of the key decisive factors which granted Azerbaijan superiority were the Turkish drones used by the Azeri military.

Those drones, along with the methods of warfare developed through their use in other fronts, enabled Azerbaijan to capture the strategic city of Shusha and force Armenia's surrender on 9 November, leading to the Russia-brokered ceasefire deal which returned the territory to Baku.

Dec 02 07:53

Joe Biden’s Throwback Team Threatens American Security and Middle East Stability

Joe Biden made clear he wants to put the old gang back together when he announced his prospective national security team this past week including the likes of John Kerry, Tony Blinken and Jake Sullivan. They represent the worst instincts and outcomes of the Obama Administration’s foreign policy of promoting endless wars while undermining allies and placating adversaries that the Trump Administration had to clean up. How do I know? I served as the Senior White House Advisor at the U.S. Department of State in the Trump administration, cleaning up the mess that the Obama-Biden administration left behind.

Dec 02 07:49

US Destroyer Donald Cook Heading to Mediterranean After Patrol Mission in Black Sea

The US guided-missile destroyer Donald Cook is on its way to the Mediterranean Sea after completing a maritime security patrol mission in the Black Sea, the US Navy's 6th Fleet said on Wednesday.

"USSDonaldCook begins southbound transit to the #Mediterranean Sea after completing a successful patrol on the #BlackSea in support of @NATO Allies & Partners", the naval press service said on Twitter.

The ship entered the Black Sea on 23 November and conducted air defence exercises with NATO allies, the statement said.

Dec 02 07:02

The Monroe Doctrine Goes Global: America, and only America, Gets To Intervene Everywhere

On December 2, 1823 President James Monroe enunciated what became known as the Monroe Doctrine. It was a fantastic mix of presumption and chutzpah: the U.S., and only the US, was entitled to intervene whenever and wherever it desired for whatever reason it decided in Latin America.

Monroe made his position sound a little less imperialistic by emphasizing we didn’t want the Europeans in, rather than admitting we planned on taking over their militarist game. In a statement mostly written by Secretary of State John Quincy Adams, the Monroe administration insisted:

Dec 02 07:00

Marine Corps to grunts: Please stop taking LSD

The Marine Corps has a message for the more groovy-minded grunts in the ranks: Please, for the love of God, stop dropping acid.

Several Marines and sailors assigned to the 2nd Marine Division at Camp Lejeune in North Carolina have tested positive for LSD use amid a sweep of recent tests for the drug, the service announced on Monday.

According to a recent anti-drug PSA published in the Defense Visual Information Distribution System, a number of “recent incidents” involving either Marines and sailors induced division leaders to carry out random LSD testing starting this summer.

Before those incidents, Marine Corps officials would have required probable cause for search rather than relying on random screening, according to the service.

So far, personnel have conducted nearly 4,000 tests since the start of the summer with “several” positives.

Dec 01 08:44

Some Liberals and Arms-Control Experts Are Cheering for War Profiteers To Be in Biden’s Cabinet

No matter who ends up winning Senate confirmation for top positions on President Biden’s “national security” team, an ominous dynamic is already underway. Some foreign-policy specialists with progressive reputations are voicing support and evasive praise for prospective Cabinet members – as though spinning through revolving doors to broker lucrative Pentagon contracts is not a conflict of interest, and as though advocating for an aggressive U.S. military posture is fine.

Rationalizations are plentiful, but the results are dangerous. It’s an insidious process – helping to set low standards for the incoming administration. Enablers now extol potential Cabinet picks who’ve combined pushing for continuous war and hugely expensive new weapons systems with getting rich as dealmakers for the military-industrial complex.

Dec 01 08:20

Nuclear war between US & Russia more likely as Americans ‘share’ bombs with European NATO members – Deputy FM Ryabkov

Russia has called for the US to halt the deployment of nuclear weapons on the territory of NATO’s European members, arguing it both violates the terms of existing treaties and makes a devastating conflict more likely to happen.
Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov told a meeting sponsored by energy companies Chevron and Transneft on Monday that Moscow “hopes that the United States will stop ‘sharing’ nuclear weapons with its allies, and stop deploying nuclear weapons in countries that do not possess such weapons… Obviously, this leads to destabilization, in addition, new risks appear,” he added, “and this is a violation of Articles 1 and 2 of the Non-Proliferation Treaty.”

Dec 01 07:54

Why is Egypt intensifying its military drills?

After a busy November full of military drills, not least of which took place at sea, Egypt is continuing its training efforts into December and throughout 2021, sending a message about its global reach and capabilities.

“The increased number of drills shows that the Egyptian armed forces has the capabilities to conduct all these exercises at the same time,” according to Ahmad Eliba, a defense expert at the Egyptian Center for Strategic Studies. The exercises also show off Egypt’s strategic deterrence capabilities and weapons systems, he added.

Dec 01 07:52

Video: War Ended but Armenia Still Suffers Losses. Azerbaijani Troops Enter Largest Armenian Gold Mine

This week, the Armenian leadership has reached an unprecedented height in its state management achievements. Prime Minsiter Nikol Pashinayan and his government did not stop at the successful campaign to undermine the Armenian regional position and the epic loss in the Second Nagorno-Karabakh War. Now, they are losing their largest gold mine, which was controlled by the Armenians for the last few decades.

On November 26, Azerbaijani troops entered the Sotk gold mine, which is located in the Gegharkunik province of Armenia, right on the border with the disputed region of Nagorno-Karabakh. The mine reserves are estimated at more than 130 tons. GEOPROMINING GOLD, which operates this mine, is one of the largest taxpayers and employers in Armenia. According to Armenian sources, the company paid $34 million into the Armenian budget in the period just between January to September of 2020.

Dec 01 07:51

The Planet Cannot Heal Until We Rip the Mask Off the West’s War Machine

Making political sense of the world can be tricky unless one understands the role of the state in capitalist societies. The state is not primarily there to represent voters or uphold democratic rights and values; it is a vehicle for facilitating and legitimating the concentration of wealth and power into fewer and fewer hands.

In a recent post, I wrote about “externalities” – the ability of companies to offset the true costs inherent in the production process. The burden of these costs are covertly shifted on to wider society: that is, on to you and me. Or on to those far from view, in foreign lands. Or on to future generations. Externalising costs means that profits can be maximised for the wealth elite in the here and now.

Dec 01 07:09

Demystifying Myths of the Six-Day War

The war that Israel initiated in June of 1967 became the stuff of myths and legends on many levels. Now, after fifty one years it may be time to unravel and demystify what took place during those fateful six days in June. There is the myth of the existential threat which called for Israel to engage in a preemptive strike which started the war, then there is the myth of the greatness of the Israeli army and its remarkable abilities, and there is a claim which one can argue is also a myth, that it was this war that changed the face of the Middle East forever. Then, there is an even greater myth and that is that Palestine was occupied as a result of the 1967 war. That the West Bank and The Gaza Strip, which are no more than two small parts of Palestine artificially created when Israel was established, are The Occupied Palestinian territories, as opposed to two areas within occupied Palestine.

Dec 01 06:28

CrossTalk Bullhorns, QUARANTINE EDITION: Build back worse?

The foreign policy team of a potential Biden administration is being touted by the liberal media. We tell you why all of us should be horrified. Also, there is a lot of talk of a Great Reset, and Build Back Better. Does looking backwards bode well for the future?

CrossTalking with Patrick Henningsen and Dmitry Babich.

Nov 30 08:54

EU proposes new post-Trump alliance with U.S. in face of China threat: Financial Times

The European Union is seeking to forge a new alliance with the United States to bury the tensions of the Trump era and meet the challenges posed by China, the Financial Times reported on Sunday, citing a draft plan.

The plan proposes rebuilding ties with common fronts on issues from digital regulation to tackling the COVID-19 pandemic, the FT said.

Relations between the United States and Europe have been strained under President Donald Trump. The EU and most of the bloc’s states have congratulated President-elect Joe Biden.

“As open democratic societies and market economies, the EU and the US agree on the strategic challenge presented by China’s growing international assertiveness, even if we do not always agree on the best way to address this,” the FT cited the draft plan as saying.

Nov 30 07:17

The Mammoth Cost Of Operating America's Combat Aircraft

The non-partisan U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) recently released an overview of mission capable rates and the cost of operating U.S. military aircraft. It examined more than 40 different aircraft types, finding that only three of them reached their mission capable goals between fiscal years 2011 and 2019. In total, the report put the collective cost of operating all of the U.S. military's aircraft fleets at $49 billion in fiscal year 2018, taking operational & support (O&S) costs such as maintenance as well as supply support in account. O&S generally makes up 70 percent of a weapon system's total life cycle costs and it includes spare parts, depot and field maintenance, contract services, engineering support and personnel, amongst other factors.

Nov 30 07:06

UN says at least 110 killed in suspected Boko Haram attack in Nigeria where many victims were beheaded

The death toll in a suspected Boko Haram attack on farmers in northeastern Nigeria on Saturday has reached at least 110, a UN humanitarian coordinator in the country said, urging the perpetrators to be brought to justice.

“At least 110 civilians were ruthlessly killed and many others wounded in this attack,” Edward Kallon, the UN’s humanitarian coordinator in Nigeria, said in a statement.

The incident was the “most violent direct attack against innocent civilians” in the country in 2020, Kallon pointed out. The perpetrators of this “heinous and senseless” act must be brought to justice, he added.

A group of armed men on motorcycles ambushed the farmers as they went into the rice fields to gather the harvest on Saturday. The bodies of 43 farmers have been recovered after the massacre, with around 30 of them being beheaded. The security forces have been searching the area for those missing.

Nov 30 06:54

Russia Scrambles Su-27 Fighter to Intercept US Air Force Aircraft Over Black Sea

The intercept is the latest incident involving NATO and Russian aircraft flying near Russia's maritime borders, with similar occurrences taking place regularly from the Barents and Baltic seas in the north and west to the Bering Sea and the Sea of Okhotsk in Russia's Far East.

A Russian Sukhoi Su-27 fighter jet has been scrambled to intercept a US Air Force surveillance aircraft flying over the Black Sea, the Russian Defence Ministry announced.

The US aircraft involved was said to be a Boeing RC-135 spy plane, with the Su-27 scrambled after ground-based radars had detected it as it approached the Russian maritime border.

Nov 29 10:29

Assassination of Iranian Scientist brings US-Israel Closer to War with Iran

By Brian Berletic

Reports on the death of senior Iranian nuclear scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh signals another dangerous turn in Washington’s systematic attempts to undermine and overthrow the current government of Iran...

The New York Times assumes that Biden genuinely wanted to return to the 2015 nuclear agreement – officially known as the The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) – and insists that it is up to Iran whether or not that possibility still remains...

It's worth returning to the 2009 document "Which Path to Persia?" to see how this is unfolding...

Nov 29 08:55

Trump Purges Pentagon Advisory Board, Cripples Establishment's Influence on DOD

Henry Kissinger and Madeleine Albright shouldn’t have any influence over Pentagon policy in 2020.

This oughtn’t be a controversial statement. If one is to drain the swamp, the folks behind the bombing of Cambodia and permanent normalized trade relations with China, respectively, probably aren’t the people you want advising the Department of Defense.

But the former secretaries of state were still on the Defense Policy Board, described by Foreign Policy as “a kind of in-house think tank on retainer for top military leaders, providing independent counsel and advice on defense policy.”

Nov 29 08:32

What Acting SecDef Miller’s Special Ops Shift Means

Acting Secretary of Defense Christopher Miller has only been at the Pentagon for one week, but has already announced major changes to military posture and structure around the globe amid a major White House shakeup of civilian leadership.

Standing in front of “Bronze Bruce,” a memorial to Army Special Forces at Fort Bragg this morning, Miller signed a memo authorizing the Pentagon’s Special Operations/Low Intensity Conflict office to begin reporting directly to the Defense Secretary, instead of reporting to the policy undersecretary.

“I am here today to announce that I have directed the Special Operations civilian leadership to report directly to me, instead of through the current bureaucratic channels,” Miller said, making good on language that permitted such a move in the 2017 National Defense Authorization Act. Note the NDAA did not mandate the change; it allowed it.

Nov 29 08:24

Multiple Explosions Reported in Eritrean Capital Amid Brewing Tensions in Neighbouring Ethiopia

Earlier this month, at least two missiles were fired from the northern Ethiopian state of Tigray at neighbouring Eritrea as the breakaway region remains engulfed in a conflict with Addis Abba.

Six explosions were reported in the Eritrean capital of Asmara late on Saturday, according to the US State Department, amid tensions in neighbouring Ethiopia, where government forces are fighting the Tigray People's Liberation Front.

The US State Department is urging US citizens to avoid non-essential travel to Eritrea.

Nov 29 07:44

CIA CONTRACTOR DIES IN SECRET U.S. WAR IN SOMALIA

An American working for the CIA died this week of injuries from a terrorist attack in Mogadishu, Somalia, according to two people with knowledge of the attack. He is the first American known to be killed as a result of violence in the capital since the disastrous 1993 Black Hawk Down battle.

Michael Goodboe, a 54-year-old former Navy SEAL who worked for the CIA’s paramilitary unit, died after succumbing to injuries from an improvised explosive device, according to the two sources. The two sources requested anonymity because of the sensitivity around the attack and because they were not authorized to disclose Goodboe’s death.

The attack that killed Goodboe was presumed to have been conducted by al-Shabab, an Al Qaeda affiliated group engaged in a decadelong insurgency, though the details remain unclear. One of the people familiar with the attack said Goodboe was flown to Germany, where the U.S. has a military hospital, and later died of his injuries.

Nov 28 08:34

Chinese President Xi tells his army 'not to fear death' and 'prepare to win wars' as he addresses military commanders

Chinese President Xi Jinping has urged his troops not to fear death and focus on preparing to win wars while addressing military commanders.

He told his armed forces on Wednesday to step up training under combat conditions and 'not fear death and hardship', reported state media, citing the leader.

Xi has previously called for military readiness amid spiking political tensions between Beijing and other countries, particularly the US and self-ruled Taiwan, over coronavirus pandemic, territorial disputes and human rights.

Nov 28 08:22

Iran Blames Israel, US For Assassination Of Top Nuclear Scientist

Update 2: Iran accused Israel and the U.S. of organizing the assassination of one of its top nuclear scientists on Friday and vowed revenge, sharply escalating tensions in the Persian Gulf in the final weeks of Donald Trump’s presidency. Mohsen Fakhrizadeh was the head of research and innovation at Iran’s Ministry of Defense, and was also viewed internationall as the head of Iran's nuclear weapons program. He was killed close to the Damavand campus of Islamic Azad University, about 60 kilometers east of central Tehran, Iran's Tasnim news reported.

"Terrorists murdered an eminent Iranian scientist today. This cowardice—with serious indications of Israeli role—shows desperate warmongering of perpetrators," Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said in a tweet. Iran’s army also accused the U.S. of bearing responsibility. Curiously, Trump retweeted a New York Times report on Fakhrizadeh’s killing without commenting.

Nov 28 08:16

Declassified UK: REVEALED: The UK military’s overseas base network involves 145 sites in 42 countries

Britain’s armed forces have a far more extensive base network than ever presented by the Ministry of Defence. New research by Declassified reveals the extent of this global military presence for the first time – as the government announces an extra 10% spending on defence.

UK military has base sites in five countries around China: naval base in Singapore, garrisons in Brunei, drone testing sites in Australia, three facilities in Nepal and quick reaction force in Afghanistan

Cyprus hosts 17 UK military installations including firing ranges and spy stations, with some located outside UK’s “sovereign base areas”

Britain maintains military presence in seven Arab monarchies where citizens have little or no say in how they are governed

UK personnel are stationed across 15 sites in Saudi Arabia, supporting internal repression and the war in Yemen, and at 16 sites in Oman, some run directly by British military

Nov 28 08:05

Biden Proclaims ‘America Is Back’ as the US Makes Provocations on Russia’s Borders

"America is back" hailed Joe Biden on Twitter this week. The world tried to work out exactly what that meant. For different parts of the world, of course, it means different things. As many liberal Americans breathe a sigh of relief, the people of Libya, Afghanistan and Iraq may shudder. For democratic, progressive values at home were often balanced with interventionism and destruction abroad during previous "normal" administrations. There is no doubt that Russians are viewing Biden’s presidency with trepidation: the return of familiar hawks does not bode well for Russian-US relations.

Nov 28 08:05

Biden's Foreign Policy Picks Are From the Hawkish National Security Blob. That Is a Bad Sign.

There was no rea­son to think that a Biden admin­is­tra­tion would be to the left of the Oba­ma admin­is­tra­tion when it comes to for­eign pol­i­cy. Biden comes with a long polit­i­cal career of sup­port­ing the wars of the Unit­ed States and its allies, from the 2003 inva­sion of Iraq to Israel’s aggres­sion against Pales­tini­ans to the pro­tract­ed occu­pa­tion of Afghanistan. And what­ev­er lim­it­ed over­tures he made to the Left dur­ing his cam­paign for the gen­er­al elec­tion in 2020 (while he simul­ta­ne­ous­ly ran on dis­tanc­ing him­self from the Left), for­eign pol­i­cy was almost entire­ly omit­ted, as evi­denced by the issue’s exclu­sion from the uni­ty task force with Bernie Sanders.

Nov 28 07:46

Unrelated to Scientist's Murder? US Reportedly Sends Warships to Persian Gulf As 'Message to Iran'

The United States is moving its USS Nimitz aircraft carrier and other warships into the Persian Gulf to support the withdrawal of troops from Iraq and Afghanistan, CNN reported on Saturday, adding that the decision was made before the assassination of Iranian nuclear physicist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh.

The broadcaster is citing an unnamed US defence official, who confirmed that the move was decided before the report about the killing of Fakhrizadeh but would still serve as a message to Tehran.

The Iranian Defense Ministry said on Friday that the head of its research and innovation centre, Fakhrizadeh, had been killed. Earlier on Saturday, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani accused Israel of being behind the killing of the nuclear physicist, while Iran’s Ambassador to the United Nations Majid Takht Ravanchi has warned the US and Israel against "adventuristic" steps.

Nov 28 07:44

Iran warns US & Israel against any ‘adventurism’ during Trump’s ‘final’ days in office after murder of scientist — letter to UN

Iran’s ambassador to the United Nations has called on Washington and Tel Aviv to avoid “adventuristic measures” after the assassination of a top Iranian scientist, while also alleging “serious indications” of Israeli involvement.

The Islamic Republic's UN envoy Majid Takht Ravanchi penned a harshly worded letter to the international body on Friday, blasting the “terrorist assassination” of leading nuclear scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh by unknown assailants earlier on Friday morning, while also warning that Tehran would retaliate to any brash moves taken by Israel or the US.

Nov 27 12:02

Rand Paul Says He Will Ask Biden’s Secretary Of State Pick Tony Blinken To Apologize For Supporting War In Iraq

Republican Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul said he will ask President-elect Joe Biden’s choice for secretary of state, Tony Blinken, to apologize for supporting the war in Iraq.

In a Tuesday interview with Fox News anchor Neil Cavuto, Paul criticized a few of Biden’s cabinet picks, especially Blinken, a longtime Biden adviser. Biden announced Monday that Blinken would serve as his secretary of state. Paul said he is very concerned about foreign policy under the Biden administration.

“On foreign policy, I am very worried that there will be a big shift, and it’s back to those who believe that we should militarily intervene abroad in a big way. You have neoconservatives on the right who wants to intervene for geopolitical reasons, but then you have liberals, like Blinken and Samantha Power and others, who want to intervene for humanitarian reasons,” Paul said in the interview.

Nov 27 12:01

US Navy Deploys Submarine-Launched Combat Drones

The drone capability will enable submarines to strike adversaries beyond visual range, allowing the aerial vehicles to gather real-time intelligence on enemy strength, movements, and communications.

Nov 27 09:17

Rare Footage Shows Russian Warship 'Chasing' US Destroyer In Border Incident

The department clarified that the US Navy destroyer went 2 km beyond the border line, invading the territorial waters of the Russian Federation. The Russian military warned the Americans that they were ready for a ramming maneuver.

"The Admiral Vinogradov, a large anti-submarine ship of the Pacific Fleet, which is directly tracking the American destroyer, warned the foreign ship through the international communication channel about the inadmissibility of such actions and the possibility of using a ramming maneuver to force the intruder out of the territorial waters," the Defense Ministry said.

After that, the John McCain immediately went into neutral waters: "the American destroyer did not make repeated attempts to enter them."

Watch footage of the rare confrontation in the Sea of Japan below:

Nov 27 06:33

Could a Biden Presidency Mean Return to Humanitarian Bombing of 'Pax Obama'?

After the 'America First' foreign policy of Donald Trump - the first elected US president since Dwight Eisenhower not to start a major war - Joe Biden's election portends a re-run of the Obama years, when the promise of peace was betrayed.

Joe Biden says his cabinet appointments show "America is back" on the world stage - but is that really a good thing?

With former vice-president Biden looking increasingly secure in his claim on the White House despite ongoing legal challenges to the election process, how will his choices for his governing team shape foreign and domestic policy?

Nov 27 06:32

Who’s your daddy? Here’s why European leaders are swooning like giddy submissives over Biden’s warmongering ‘back to normal’ team

The EU is trembling in anticipation at the prospect of a Joe Biden administration, like Ana Steele in Christian Grey’s Red Room of Pain, despite the policies he espouses being precisely the cause of their problems.

Their rushing to congratulate him, even before the presidential result is certified, speaks volumes of their delight that ‘daddy’ is back in the White House.

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen could barely contain her joy over what she said was a “new beginning in EU-US global partnership.”

Charles Michel, the European Council president, said it was time to “rebuild a strong EU-USA alliance” and he hastily invited Biden to a European summit in Brussels in the new year, even though the American election has not yet been formally concluded.

Nov 26 07:50

Watch: F-35 Stealth Fighter Drops Mock Nuclear Bomb Over Nevada Desert

We recently highlighted the possibility that the US and China "may well be on the road to war, and nuclear war is no longer unthinkable." For years, we've discussed the relentless quest of Washington elites, preparing the empire for the inevitable collision with China as the battle for economic supremacy nears.

The rapid modernization of the military under the Trump administration, costing taxpayers $2 trillion, was an important signal in gauging Washington Warhawks' level of military preparedness as the threat of rising China increases by the day.

President Trump has described the trillions of dollars allocated to the military as a "colossal rebuilding" effort - something he says has 'never been done before.' Trump has routinely described all sorts of new military technology, including fifth-generation stealth jets, hypersonic missiles, and increased nuclear weapon capability.

Nov 26 07:46

US vs China? Duterte says Philippines interest comes first

In case tensions between the United States and China escalate into open conflict, President Duterte will always put forward the interest of the Philippines, Malacañang said.

“The President’s stand is clear: he will put the national interest of the Philippines, in view of a clash between the two superpowers,” presidential spokesman Harry Roque Jr. said at a briefing yesterday.

Roque reiterated the President’s policy of “being friends to all, and enemy to no one,” when asked about the country’s position amid the heated exchanges between the two countries.

Nov 26 07:45

US strategic position eroding as Philippines cozies up to China

Chinese naval exercises off the coast of the Philippines this summer finally forced the hand of President Rodrigo Duterte, if only for six months.

Despite a friendly relationship with President Trump, the Filipino president had maintained a hard line against the United States while continuing to appease China.

Promised Chinese economic investments, infrastructure development, and jobs were not forthcoming to boost the populist Duterte. Meanwhile, popular support for China is plummeting in the Philippines, and the Filipino military is growing concerned by Chinese activity near the disputed Spratly Islands.

Duterte’s June 1 rapprochement with the U.S. was measured: a six-month delay in the suspension of a Visiting Forces Agreement set to expire with the U.S.

Nov 26 07:28

Chilling World War III 'wargames' show US forces crushed by Russia and China

Research organization RAND has run dozens of wargames simulating major conflict scenarios in what it describes as Russia and China’s “backyards.” The wargames suggest that the U.S. forces in those locations would get attacked by a vast array of both conventional and cyber weapons.

RAND Senior Defense Analyst David Ochmanek discussed the simulations at the Center for a New American Security (CNAS) in Washington D.C. last week. “In our games, where we fight China or Russia … blue gets its a** handed to it, not to put too fine a point on it,” he said, during a panel discussion. Blue denotes U.S. forces in the simulations.

Nov 25 12:12

Manila will be involved if 'shooting war' erupts between the US and China says Philippines defense secretary

The defense secretary of the Philippines has warned of the growing risk of conflict in the South China Sea and claimed that if a war erupts, his country will be involved whether the people like it or not.

National Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana said in a speech on Wednesday that the Philippines will get dragged into a conflict between the US and China if tensions continue to escalate.

Lorenzana, a retired army general, claimed the confrontation between China and the US and its allies was the most concerning security challenge in the Indo-Pacific region.

“While the US and China continue to assert that their actions are defensive, the danger of miscalculation is ever present, like the near collision of two frigates belonging to the US and China two years ago,” he said.

Nov 25 11:41

Watchdog: At Least 600 Dead in Nov. 9 Tigray Massacre

One day into the 72-hour ultimatum on Ethiopia’s Tigray city, Ethiopia claims many have surrendered, though there is growing pessimism the attack on the city can be avoided.

The Ethiopia Human Rights Commission found that some 600 people were killed in a Nov 9. massacre in Tigray, stabbed or hacked to death. That, and failure to care for the displaced, is raising concern.

PM Abiy Ahmed’s harsh statements against the Tigrayans only add to those concerns, and even if the fighting ends, the government may keep cracking down on the Tigrayans.

Nov 25 11:40

US military aircraft are nowhere near as ready as they should be — here's how bad the situation is

A lot of US military aircraft have fallen short of their readiness goals for the better part of a decade, including America's arsenal of fighter jets, according to a new government watchdog report.

Over the better part of the last decade, only three of 46 aircraft types in the US arsenal regularly met the service-established mission capable goals, and only one, the Air Force's UH-1N Huey, consistently met the readiness goal, the Government Accountability Office reported Thursday.

And, that's not even the worst of it.

Nov 25 07:29

Research Delays Push Back VA Decision on New Agent Orange Conditions

The COVID-19 pandemic has delayed the results of two research studies that Veterans Affairs officials say are needed to determine whether new health conditions should be added to the list of Agent Orange-connected diseases.

A VA spokeswoman said Tuesday that results of the two studies -- the Vietnam Era Health Retrospective Observational Study, or VE-HEROeS, and the Vietnam Era Mortality Study -- aren't expected until at least next year, and in the case of the mortality study, until "mid-2021."

Nov 25 07:12

Deadly Conflict in Ethiopia Escalates as Tigray Rejects PM Ahmed's Ultimatum

Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed gave the anti-government Tigray People's Liberation Front (TPLF) 72 hours to surrender on Sunday. The head of the region Debretsion Gebremichael rejected the demands, saying that his people are "ready to die" for their homeland.

The UN and international organisations have urged the sides in the Ethiopian conflict to cease hostilities in a bid to prevent civilian casualties, as the deadline for the ultimatum approaches.

"The highly aggressive rhetoric on both sides regarding the fight for Mekele is dangerously provocative and risks placing already vulnerable and frightened civilians in grave danger", said UN human rights chief Michelle Bachelet.

Nov 25 07:10

US Back to 'Normal' Imperialism

The next US administration is taking shape with President-elect Joe Biden naming his picks to top cabinet posts and national security. It heralds a return to "normal" US imperialism and militarism. That is something to dread not celebrate, as American and European media would have us believe.

The incoming Democrat president, who is due to be inaugurated on January 20, is cheerfully reassuring European and NATO leaders that "America is back" after four years of erratic US foreign policy under the maverick Donald Trump.

Biden said his administration will "reclaim America's seat at the top of the table".

US media are also straining with Orwellian euphemisms. CNN says under Team Biden, the US will "reclaim its squandered leadership role". While the Washington Post said the new Biden administration hails the "return to competent government".

Nov 25 07:08

ARE YOU INVADING, OR JUST LOST? RUSSIAN NAVY THREATENS TO RAM US WARSHIP ‘JOHN MCCAIN’ AFTER IT CROSSES BORDER NEAR VLADIVOSTOK

A notorious US naval destroyer sparked a diplomatic incident on Tuesday morning after Russia claimed that it had launched an incursion into its territorial waters.

The USS John S McCain, a specialist combat ship designed to hunt submarines, was operating in the Sea of Japan (also called the East Sea), off the coast of the Russian Far Eastern capital, Vladivostok. Authorities say it was more than two kilometers inside Russia’s internationally recognized maritime border.

A statement from the Ministry of Defense in Moscow said that the vessel had “violated” Russian waters and was “warned of the unacceptability of its actions” by the Udaloy-class destroyer Admiral Vinogradov, which had been tailing it. The communiqué added that sailors had told the American ship of the “potential of resorting to ramming to force the trespasser out of the territory.” The US navy has not yet issued a response.

Nov 25 07:06

Under Biden, expect more bombing and regime change. Tony Blinken’s record speaks for itself

A US foreign policy run by Antony J. Blinken and Jake Sullivan, the likely next secretary of state and national security adviser, will mean more global interventions and regime-change operations, Clinton and Obama style.
Blinken played a prominent foreign policy role in both the Bill Clinton and Barack Obama administrations, while Sullivan was part of the Obama one.

The Democrat-boosting media are, not surprisingly, excited by media-anointed President-elect Joe Biden’s choice of Blinken, his long-time national security adviser, as his secretary of state. Along with his pick of Jake Sullivan, another close aide, as his national security adviser, these appointments supposedly signal restoration of “internationalism” and “globalpartnerships” as guiding principles of US foreign policy.

Nov 25 06:46

The Yemen “Civil War” Arms Bonanza. Mammoth Weapons Sales to UAE, Saudi Arabia and Israel

“Making billions from arms exports which fuel the conflict while providing a small fraction of that in aid to Yemen is both immoral and incoherent.” So thundered Oxfam’s Yemen Country Director, Muhsin Siddiquey after consulting figures from the Stockholm Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) showing that members of the G20 have exported over $17 billion worth of arms to Saudi Arabia since the Kingdom entered the conflict in Yemen. “The world’s wealthiest nations cannot continue to put profits above the Yemeni people.”

Nov 25 06:11

"America Is Back": Beltway Hawks Giddy Over Biden's National Security 'A-Team'

Biden's message Tuesday as he unveiled the first six members of his national security and foreign policy team and let them speak for the first time is that "America is back" and is "ready to lead the world" once again.

He reflected in making the in-person introductions that "It's a team that will keep our country and our people safe and secure," and that it—

"Reflects the fact that America is back, ready to lead the world, not retreat from it. Once again, sit at the head of the table."

Nov 25 06:10

Peace Groups Blast Biden’s DNI Pick Over Links to Drones, Torture, and Mass Surveillance

Peace activists on Monday sounded the alarm over President-elect Joe Biden’s pick for director of national intelligence, Avril Haines, citing her role in drone strike policy during Barack Obama’s presidency and covering up torture perpetrated by members of the George W. Bush administration.

Haines, as former deputy national security adviser and former deputy CIA director, worked closely with Obama and former CIA Director John Brennan as the administration dramatically increased drone strikes.

CIA Director Gina Haspel, as the New York Times noted, will report to Haines. Haspel had a role supervising the CIA’s torture program, and Haines supported President Donald Trump’s nomination of the agency chief in 2018.

Nov 25 06:07

Watchdog: At Least 600 Dead in Nov. 9 Tigray Massacre

One day into the 72-hour ultimatum on Ethiopia’s Tigray city, Ethiopia claims many have surrendered, though there is growing pessimism the attack on the city can be avoided.

The Ethiopia Human Rights Commission found that some 600 people were killed in a Nov 9. massacre in Tigray, stabbed or hacked to death. That, and failure to care for the displaced, is raising concern.

PM Abiy Ahmed’s harsh statements against the Tigrayans only add to those concerns, and even if the fighting ends, the government may keep cracking down on the Tigrayans.

Reflecting that problem, Ethiopia has loudly rejected mediation over the ongoing problem, meaning their endgame is not resolving the dispute but just crushing it.

Nov 25 06:05

Joe Biden’s New National Security Picks Are Very Troubling

Joe Biden’s early national security picks cashed in after their time in the Obama administration by consulting for defense contractors or working for think tanks funded by the defense industry and the US government, or both.

On Sunday, Bloomberg reported that Biden has chosen his longtime aide, Tony Blinken, to serve as secretary of state and will name Jake Sullivan, his senior advisor and a former Hillary Clinton aide, national security adviser. Former Obama Defense Department official Michèle Flournoy is considered the favorite to be secretary of defense.

After leaving the Obama administration, Blinken and Flournoy founded WestExec Advisors, a secretive consulting firm whose motto has been: “Bringing the Situation Room to the board room.” Flournoy and Sullivan have both held roles at think tanks raking in money from defense contractors, and US government intelligence and defense agencies.

Nov 24 12:42

In  threat to Iran, US sends heavy bombers to Middle East via Israel

The United States this week rapidly deployed several heavy bombers to the Middle East this week in an apparent threat to Iran, amid swirling speculation that US President Donald Trump plans to take military action against Tehran before President-elect Joe Biden enters office.

US Central Command said the planes were sent into the region “to deter aggression and reassure US partners and allies.”

In a highly irregular move, the B-52H Stratofortress planes were seen flying toward Israeli airspace on Saturday en route to the base where they will be stationed, likely in Qatar. The aircraft were spotted on civilian tracking software approaching Israel before they apparently turned off their transponders, rendering them invisible on those applications.

It was the third time in the past year and a half that B-52 bombers, which are capable of carrying nuclear weapons and other powerful munitions, have been deployed to the region in

Nov 24 12:39

'The Machines Did The Killing': Obama Awkwardly Defends Drone Kill List In New Memoir

Former President Barack Obama still can't shake his legacy as the "drone president" given he still holds the record for number of ordered covert assassination strikes via drones.

"There were ten times more air strikes in the covert war on terror during President Barack Obama’s presidency than under his predecessor, George W. Bush," one prior human rights study found.

"Obama embraced the US drone program, overseeing more strikes in his first year than Bush carried out during his entire presidency. A total of 563 strikes, largely by drones, targeted Pakistan, Somalia and Yemen during Obama’s two terms, compared to 57 strikes under Bush," the study said.

Nov 24 12:15

US Army working on new electromagnetic deception tool

The U.S. Army is developing a new tool to gain an advantage in the cat and mouse game that is the electromagnetic spectrum mission.

Currently in the early concepts stage, the Army detailed its idea for the Modular Electromagnetic Spectrum Deception Suite, or MEDS, that will seek to confound the enemy within the invisible yet highly dynamic maneuver space of the electromagnetic spectrum.

Despite the fact forces cannot see it, the spectrum is an extremely important space they must cautiously move through just as a unit would in formation through a valley. U.S. adversaries have proven their ability to locate units based solely on their signature in the electromagnetic spectrum, leading to entire concept and materiel changes for the Army to smaller units and command posts. Deception within the spectrum has become a high priority for the U.S. military.

Nov 24 11:50

Trump Brought Our Troops Home, Biden's Cabinet Picks Likely To Push For Sending Them Back

President-elect Joe Biden's pick for secretary of state got criticized for his current consulting work and early support for the Iraq War before his Monday announcements.

Antony Blinken advised Biden to vote for the Iraq War. Also said the US failed by not sending more troops to Syria," Ricochet editor-in-chief Jon Gabriel wrote on Twitter on Sunday.

Blinken was Biden's top aide in 2002 when the former senator voted for a decision allowing the use of force in Iraq. News of Biden's pick drew the attention of Blinken's firm WestExec Advisors.

Nov 24 11:09

Russian Warship Warned US Destroyer to Turn Around or Be Rammed

Russia’s Admiral Vinogradov anti-submarine destroyer stopped the United States’ USS John S. McCain from violating the Russian border in the Peter the Great Gulf, the Russian Defense Ministry said in a statement.

According to the ministry, at 06:17 Moscow time (03:17 GMT) on Tuesday, the USS John S. McCain, which entered the Sea of Japan several days ago, violated Russia’s territorial waters in the Peter the Great Gulf, “passing the maritime border by two kilometers.”

“The Pacific Fleet’s Admiral Vinogradov anti-submarine destroyer used an international communication channel to warn the foreign vessel that such actions were unacceptable and the violator could be forced out of the country’s territorial waters in a ramming maneuver. After the warming was issued and the Admiral Vinogradov changed its course, the USS John S. McCain destroyer returned to international waters,” the statement said.

Nov 24 06:52

US, Romanian forces launch rockets into Black Sea for the first time

U.S. forces fired two M142 High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems at targets during Exercise Rapid Falcon last week from Romania into the Black Sea — marking the first time U.S. troops had done so with Romanian counterparts.

According to the service, troops from the Army’s 1st Battalion, 77th Field Artillery Regiment, 41st Field Artillery Brigade deployed the HIMARS systems using an MC-130J Commando II with the U.S. Air Force’s 352nd Special Operations Wing and a C-130 Hercules with U.S. Air Forces in Europe and Africa.

Two launcher crews of six personnel departed Ramstein Air Base in Germany on Nov. 19 for Romania to complete the exercise before returning to Germany immediately afterwards.

“Today we performed a HIRAIN, which is a HIMARS Rapid Infiltration,” Capt. Justin Bland, Alpha Battery Commander, 1-77 FAR, said in a recent Army news release. “This allows us to load up into a C-17, C-130, or a C-5 and go anywhere in the world and provide these timely fires.”

Nov 24 06:51

Colorado veteran suicide rate higher than national average

Suicide among U.S. military veterans reached record numbers in Colorado last year, with more than one former service member dying by suicide every week, a new report said.

A 2020 National Veteran Suicide Prevention report from the Department of Veterans Affairs said Colorado’s rate was “significantly higher” than the national rate, The Gazette reported Saturday.

Nov 24 06:49

V Corps takes up position at new Poland headquarters

The Army’s V Corps officially returned to Europe Friday with a ceremony at the unit's new forward headquarters in Poznan, Poland, from where it will command missions along NATO’s eastern flank.

The first soldiers attached to the Poznan headquarters began arriving last month after the Army reactivated the unit at Fort Knox, Ky. About 200 troops will eventually be assigned to the forward element in Poland while an additional 400 will work from Kentucky.

The activation of the Poznan mission came after Polish President Andrzej Duda on Nov. 9 signed off on a security cooperation pact that paved the way for the unit to officially launch.

U.S. Army Europe said in a statement this week that they expect the new headquarters to be fully operational by November 2021.

Nov 24 06:48

Army merges Europe, Africa commands under a single 4-star headquarters

The Army has merged its component commands responsible for operations in Europe and Africa under one four-star general in a new organization that will be headquartered in Germany, the service announced Friday.

The Army’s new U.S. Army Europe and Africa, or USAREUR-AF, will combine the former U.S. Army Europe and former U.S. Army Africa into one organization, the service said. But soldiers will not move from their current locations under the reorganization, an Army spokeswoman said Friday.

USAREUR-AF will be headquartered in Wiesbaden, Germany, where U.S. Army Europe had been posted. Meanwhile, soldiers assigned to the former U.S. Army Africa will remain at Vicenza, Italy, where that command had been posted. The former U.S. Africa has been redesignated the Southern European Task Force-Africa, or SETAF-AF, under the command of USAREUR-AF.

Nov 24 06:16

WATCH: Azeri Military Molests The Elderly, Desecrates WWII Memorials, Ransacks Armenian Property In Artsakh (Nagorno-Karabakh)

Although the President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev stated that “he would make sure peaceful coexistence is established” in Artsakh (Nagorno-Karabakh) after Azerbaijan invaded the Armenian-populated area, the situation on the ground couldn’t possibly be any further from that statement. The following videos show just how “peaceful coexistence” looks like to Azeris.

Nov 24 06:14

Nagorno-Karabakh: victory of London and Ankara, defeat of Soros and the Armenians

The Pentagon, which had planned the war in Nagorno-Karabakh, was overtaken by its British allies. But none of the great powers worried about the deaths it would cause. Moreover, while London and Ankara renewed their historic alliance, Washington and Moscow gained nothing, while George Soros and the Armenians lost much.

Nov 23 13:09

US Under Joe Biden Will Pursue Policy of “Countering” and “Encircling” Russia

On Sunday, there were new street demonstrations in the Belarusian capital of Minsk. Last week, two British diplomats were declared “persona non grata” by the Belarusian government. They are accused of conducting “destructive activities” – most probably related to aiding demonstrators amid the Belarusian crisis.

Nov 23 12:05

"As the Evidence of Electoral Fraud becomes OVERWHELMING, is another 9-11 Caper in the Event Horizon?"

I was not going to write a post today, focusing instead on the First Church of the Presence of God discourse, BUT... something has begun to trouble me and it won't go away. I am going with the idea that when you say something, it won't happen. Sometimes speaking out about a potential incident on The Event Horizon serves, in some mysterious and magical fashion to derail it.

There is now SO MUCH EVIDENCE of election fraud that when the president's lawyers get to the Supreme Court it will be a slam dunk. The corruption of the Democrat machine and most especially, the Satanic worker bees; George Soros (employee of the Rothschild Cartel). Bill Gates, Hillary Clinton, and others is as deep and depraved as ANYTHING I have ever seen. They will STOP at NOTHING to have their way. What this means is that another 9/11 style distraction disaster is ON THE MENU. I can FEEL it in the invisible as it vibrates across the ether.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I agree!

Nov 23 09:26

How Joe Biden Plans to Make the American Empire Great Again

Throughout his campaign, Joe Biden railed against Donald Trump’s ‘America First’ foreign policy, claiming it weakened the United States and left the world in disarray. “Donald Trump’s brand of ‘America First has too often led to America alone,” Biden proclaimed.

He pledged to reverse this decline and recover the damage Trump did to America’s reputation. While Donald Trump called to make America Great Again, Biden seeks to Make the American Empire Great Again.

Joe Biden: “Tonight, the whole world is watching America. And I believe at our best, America is a beacon for the globe. We will lead not only by the example of our power, but by the power of our example.”

Nov 23 08:01

China advances plans to join Arms Trade Treaty spurned by Trump

Beijing says it wants to join the pact, which regulates the $70 billion cross-border trade in conventional weapons, as soon as possible. The treaty has been ratified by 104 countries, but US President Trump has U-turned.

China has prioritized the signing of the Arms Trade Treaty (ATT), which seeks to control the trade in conventional arms and reduce human suffering, the country's Foreign Ministry said on Saturday.

Speaking at the United Nations General Assembly a day earlier, State Councilor Wang Yi said Beijing had initiated domestic legal procedures to join the pact.

Nov 23 07:45

America’s Limited Wars – Are They Good for Israel?

When is a war not a war? Apparently in the minds of some folks in Washington if it is a “single strike” or a “limited attack” it is really okay, with or without the consent of Congress as required by Article 1, Section 8, of the Constitution of the United States. The Founders had wanted to take away from the chief executive the ability to go to war, a power which the kings in Europe had abused, but the current rulers of America have chosen to ignore the wisdom of the framers of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution. They have done so by wordsmithing what they are doing and somehow attacking another country has become generally regarded as not really war at all, just a reminder to bad guys of what Washington might be capable of if it really gets angry.

Nov 23 07:15

VIDEO: Top Biden advisors Flournoy and Blinken promise smarter, more secretive permanent war policy

Biden’s likely pick for Secretary of Defense, Michele Flournoy, and his top foreign policy advisor, Tony Blinken, have played central roles in every war waged by Democratic presidents dating back to the Clinton era

Nov 23 07:14

The National Security Revolving Door Starts Spinning

Joe Biden’s early national security picks cashed in after their time in the Obama administration by consulting for defense contractors or working for think tanks funded by the defense industry and the U.S. government, or both.

On Sunday, Bloomberg reported that Biden has chosen his longtime aide, Tony Blinken, to serve as Secretary of State and will name Jake Sullivan, his senior advisor and a former Hillary Clinton aide, national security adviser. Former Obama Defense Department official Michèle Flournoy is considered the favorite to be Secretary of Defense.

After leaving the Obama administration, Blinken and Flournoy founded WestExec Advisors, a secretive consulting firm whose motto has been: “Bringing the Situation Room to the board room.” Flournoy and Sullivan have both held roles at think tanks raking in money from defense contractors and U.S. government intelligence and defense agencies.

Nov 22 08:25

Message to Iran: B-52 bombers deployed to Middle East

The U.S. military deployed B-52 bombers to the Middle East Saturday, just days after the Trump administration announced a partial withdrawal of American troops from Afghanistan and Iraq.

U.S. Central Command said the U.S. Air Force B-52H “Stratofortress” aircrews conducted the mission on "short notice" to "deter aggression and reassure U.S. partners and allies."

“The ability to quickly move forces into, out of and around the theater to seize, retain and exploit the initiative is key to deterring potential aggression," said Lt. Gen. Greg Guillot, 9th Air Force commander.

"These missions help bomber aircrews gain familiarity with the region’s airspace and command, and control functions and allow them to integrate with the theater’s U.S. and partner air assets, increasing the combined force’s overall readiness.”

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