Archive for the War On Terror Category

“a hands off, leading from behind approach”

Posted in HOOAH!, politcs, rankers, War On Terror with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on 14, June 2014 by chockblock

The U.S. has made the case as strongly as they can to regional countries, including Kuwait. But ultimately when you take a hands off, leading from behind approach to things, people don’t take you seriously and they take matters into their own hands.
America’s Allies Are Funding ISIS, Josh Rogin, The Daily Beast.com

“The elephant in the room, unmentioned by Obama, is what happens if Iraq’s leaders — or the rebels — turn out to be uninterested in compromise. In particular, the president never said anything approaching this: “We will under no circumstances permit the terrorists to take control of Iraq.”

Barack Obama is a man who knows how to use words. It’s possible, then, that this omission was intended to prepare us for the worst.”
What Obama Didn’t Say About Iraq, Stephen L. Carter, Bloombergview.com

America didn’t lose Iraq, it was given away by a party and an Administration bound and determined to “get out of Bush’s War.” The left cares not for foreign affairs, it distracts from the domestic agenda of taxing and spending*. When they do show interest, it’s to kiss the ass of oil sucking dictators or to kow-tow to any foreign tyrant. Or simply parrot the current thinking of Europe’s intellectual class.

Iraq could have used American troops. ISIS is an Al-Qaeda spin-off. A failed Iraq spells trouble for the US. Sadly, we American’s don’t care about foreign wars, but foreign wars do care about us.

The left likes to say that they ended Vietnam and now Iraq. That somehow the Democrats brought us troops home. Lies. George Bush signed the agreement to withdraw from Iraq when their coalition government didn’t want a Status Of Forces Agreement.

But if you see Tumblr, Reddit or other hives of lefty scum and villainy, the Democrats are treated like royalty for “bringing the troops home” (not really, we’re still gonna be in Afghanistan until 2017). Don’t forget the drone strikes. Clinton has his cruise missiles, this Whitehouse has kill lists and drones. Hands off and leading from behind.

So as the media has sown, so shall the American public be forced to reap the bitter harvest.

*: I’m not kidding about that. See TheOtherMcCain for our “reality based community’s” take on Iraq:

Yes, the most urgent business facing the United States Senate is a newspaper columnist’s thoughts about sex on college campuses.
– R.S. McCain

ailment

Posted in politcs, rankers, War On Terror with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on 6, March 2014 by chockblock

Ah the sound of liberal hurt feelings:

This is just the crisis to make themselves seem relevant again within the GOP—even if they’re undermining the commander in chief at a pivotal moment.
Why Neocons Love the StrongmanMichael Tomasky, The Daily Beast


It’s likely, then, that the J-20 no more represents the end of US air superiority than did Cope India or the T-50’s debut. What it does represent is the world’s second economy finally joining a club of nations long-accustomed to designing, building and operating advanced fighter aircraft.
China’s Over-Hyped Stealth Jet, David Axe, The Diplomat.


Meanwhile, it remains to be seen how much the J-20’s design changes matter and indeed how effective an aircraft it is. But it is evident that the plane’s flight testing, at least, is far more than just a publicity stunt.
Stealth Changes for China’s Stealth FighterGERRY DOYLE, NEW YORK TIMES. Gobssmacks David Axe.

It must hurt when reality overtakes liberal fantasy.

For decades the left’s orthodoxy was that the West was to make peace with Russia/The USSR, China and that “the tide of war was receding”.

Russia is INVADING the Ukraine. They used TBM’s on Georgia. China is building a modern networked force.

And yet, Michael Tomasky makes current events be all about the left and how those meanie Neo-cons runied everything.

Lest we forget, the media and the left (I repeat myself) went easy on Putin, Hugo Chavez and China. David Axe seems to think that the US military sucks and we have nothing to fear.

So when real life starts to hurt them, they either face reality (and start crying) or escape to fantasy.

President Obama’s foreign policy is based on fantasy.
– Washington Post, Editorial Board

And so it begins.

Armies

Posted in politcs, Uncategorized, War On Terror with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on 2, March 2014 by chockblock

“This isn’t 1940. Moreover, as an instrument of coercion, that smaller army would be more lethal than the much larger one that helped defeat Nazi Germany and imperial Japan. Given a choice between a few hundred of today’s Abrams tanks and a few thousand vintage Shermans, Gen. George Patton would not hesitate to choose the former.”


Do we really need a large Army?
By Andrew J. Bacevich, Washington Post.

This is the same paper that whitewashes the drone strikes. George Bush would never have been given an article titled “5 myths of the Iraq war”.

And yet the “argument” for cutting the military persists.
This Ain’t Hell skewers Tom Rick’s argument for “going to a cadre-like military, with only two Army divisions kept at high readiness”.

The left believes that troops are stupid. Just draft the bodies you need, buy the tanks, trucks and planes and then send them off to war. Lefties won’t go of course, the draft dogers of the 60′s became to leaders of today.

No they want to cut to the bone and keep cutting. there is talk of a new round of BRAC. Closing MORE bases, gutting civilian towns, eroding the defense industrial base. All for more spending on “domestic programs”.

Once the troops leave, their expertise is gone forever. You can’t draft leadership, tribal knowledge or hours in the cockpit.

“In the meantime, the world, from East Asia to the Middle East, is “unsettled” and becoming ever more so. Does anyone doubt that the decision in Washington to slash its defenses has been fully noted in Moscow, Beijing, Pyongyang, Tehran, and North Waziristan? Like Jeremiah, we say judgment is inevitable. Unless the present course is reversed, the wages of weakness will be paid in increased instability, crises, and ultimately conflicts that might well have been avoided.”

Deeply Unsettling“, Gary Schmitt and Thomas Donnelly, WeeklyStandard.com

It’s 1938 all over again.

UPDATE: Told you so…

Compare and contrast

Posted in Uncategorized, rankers, politcs, War On Terror with tags , , , , , , , , , , on 30, January 2014 by chockblock


The war in Afghanistan continues. The war in Iraq is still fresh in the minds of the soldiers who fought it. The war on terror seems far from over. Good war movies will be made about these conflicts, but only after they’re long over.

Until then, speculative fiction allows storytellers to talk about the conflicts in a way that incompetent “realistic” crap like Lone Survivor and The Hurt Locker just can’t.
Matthew Gault in War is Boring


Consider the film Lone Survivor, which tells the true story of heroic Navy SEALs in Afghanistan. The film has been denounced by some critics; a “jingoistic, pornographic work of war propaganda,” in the words of one reviewer. Richard Corliss of Time chimed in: “That these events actually happened doesn’t necessarily make it plausible or powerful in a movie, or keep it from seeming like convenient propaganda.” Similar complaints (from non-conservatives, at least) about antiwar films made during the George W. Bush years are much harder to find.
Tinseltown’s Propaganda Problem , By Jonah Goldberg, NRO.com

Hollywood and the liberals in the MSM want blood and gore, sex and violence. As long as it makes America and her military look bad.

They want the fall of Saigon, US caskets. Hence the “demand” for “access” to Dover Air Force Base. With a Democrat in the White House?

Nope. And Lone Survivor is about the Navy SEALs. So was Zero Dark Thirty and Captain Phillips. And the left hates them. Oh they likes it when Bin Laden assumed room temp, we heard “Osama is dead and Detroit is Alive” over and over.

But then the economy and the ACA hit.

So the War On Terror(tm) grinds on. There will be no Deer Hunter, no psycho veterans shooting up bars or running around in fatigues and army surplus. Thanks to the internets vets are getting our voices out. There are directors who don’t want to do propaganda. We’re sick of 9/11 images and the left screaming about how “Bush/Cheney/the GOP” did [INSERT CONSPIRACY HERE].

The X-files and hippie anti-war b.s. had their day. I say let old Hollywood burn.

The ATF’s new building

Posted in politcs, rankers, Uncategorized, War On Terror with tags , , , , , , , , on 20, January 2014 by chockblock

There is a plan to name the new ATF headquarters after Elliot Ness:

Moreover, Eig writes that Ness played around on his wife, tried to cover up an accident in which he was involved while driving drunk, he drank too much, and ended up selling frozen hamburger patties in the last years of his life because he was strapped for cash.

To summarize, Ness didn’t get his man, he had questionable morals, he probably was an alcoholic, he covered up a crime, he couldn’t manage his money, and he was prone to wild exaggeration about his accomplishments.
–”Naming ATF Headquarters After Eliot Ness Might Actually Be Appropriate ” No Lawyers, Only Guns and Money.

Given that the ATF gave guns to Mexican cartels in exchange for some info, I agree.

Military Pensions

Posted in army training, politcs, rankers, War On Terror with tags , , , , , on 5, January 2014 by chockblock

“Why is military retirement hated so much? Let’s see, I sacrifice my time, my body, my family and potentially my life for 20 years for only half of my base pay. I can still go the PX and commissary and get increasingly eroding medical benefits. Then I am demonized by people like Mr. Rumbaugh for wanting to be a productive member of society by actually being gainfully employed for a second career. If people are so upset that I have earned a military retirement then they need to get off their lazy asses and sign up. They can live with the sacrifices and everlasting scars. It pisses me off to no end the idiots that have never spent a day in uniform telling us we are lesser citizens and deserve nothing for our sacrifices”
– user “FAEX” comments on Applause for screwing the troops, This Ain’t Hell.

And the lefty media answers:

“They protest too much. Way too much. The military pension system is not only extremely generous, it is also counterproductive. It drains defense money from today’s troops and weapons. And while the system encourages some people to consider the military who otherwise might not, it also encourages them to leave early, taking their first-rate training to go double-dip by moving into a civilian government job. In any case, they can collect pensions — intended as old-age protection — in the prime of their working lives.”
– USA Today’s editoral “Defend military pension cuts: Our view

“Yeah, the system is way too generous. When I retired, twenty years ago yesterday, my pension was less than $12,000/year. In those twenty years, the generous COLA increases have brought the generous pension to a little more than $18,000 last year. “
Jonn Lilyea responds

There are a lot of myths about military pay (BAH does not go up with family size, married servicemembers don’t make that much more than single ones). The veteran and active duty military communities aren’t as active politically as the defense industry or the vote-buying lefty groups, the rent seeking K-Street companies or the grievance-mongers who populate talk shows.

Stars and Stripes blew a large hole in the pension “crisis”:

The Military Times reports that while military and civilian personnel costs have grown by 78 percent between 2001 and 2012, the overall defense budget has been growing even faster, calling into question the emphatic calls from Pentagon brass to reduce personnel-related costs.

That’s less than the increases in total military spending, which is up 85 percent since 2001,…

The left hates the military’s success and wants the money for their pipe dreams. Deficit hawks simply see dollar signs and don’t care that the military will bleed skilled personnel for years. The media is quick to report on “soldier’s using food stamps” yet defends cuts to pay, pensions and medical benefits as “necessary”.

UPDATE: XBradTC is quick to add:

But with an active force of less than 1% of the population, and retirees being a similarly small slice of the population, they don’t have the votes to influence the p0pulation like the 47% that receive some form of assistance.

Yeah, it’s so necessary to take food and rent money from the men and women defending the country AND expect them to continue to re-enlist. It’s not working that well in the real world.

A draft army wouldn’t fix this, a smaller military is a less capable military. The DoD is the one government department that actually produces results, benefits the people (research, the G.I. Bill, et al) and still has the people’s respect.

Contact your Veteran’s Service Organization and your representative. We can’t afford a repeat of the 90′s.

“Good Year for a Great War”

Posted in politcs, rankers, Uncategorized, War On Terror with tags , , , , , on 2, January 2014 by chockblock

“Will 2014 bring another Great War? My bet is almost certainly not, but with a note of caution. Claims that war is “inconceivable” are not statements about what is possible in the world, but rather, about what our limited minds can conceive. The fact that Presidents Obama and Xi understand that war would be folly for both China and the US is relevant but not dispositive. None of the leaders in Europe of 1914 would have chosen the war they got and that in the end they all lost. By 1918, the Kaiser was gone, the Austro-Hungarian Empire dissolved, the Tsar overthrown by the Bolsheviks, France bled for a generation, and England shorn of the flower of its youth and treasure. Given a chance for a do-over, none of the leaders would have made the choices he did.”
2014: Good Year for a Great War?, Graham Allison, The National Interest.

As this decade seems to mirror the last century I’m not surprised that someone is making a comparison to the “guns of August”. I am miffed that it took’em long enough.

With the fall of Saddam and the death of Bin Laden, too many think that we’re “at peace”. Americans want out of Afghanistan. The left drools over “Obamacare” and more domestic spending.

Meanwhile the world is slowly burning, Asia is full of disputes over territory. The Middle East is in revolution and Europe is broke.

August 1916 or Spring 1938? Either way the next few years could bring a nasty surprise.

Don Gomez knocks the draft arugement out of the park

Posted in army life, politcs, rankers, Uncategorized, War On Terror with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on 2, December 2013 by chockblock

Via Hotair.com:

“The most important point in arguing against bringing back the draft is that we don’t need it. That is, the armed forces are currently having no problems with recruiting, and in most cases, are recruiting over 100% of their target goals. To bring back the draft, the military would have to do one of two things in order to make room for the conscripts: increase the size of the overall force or partition off a certain quota of positions to be made up of conscripts. Considering the current economic situation and the planned reductions in troop numbers, increasing the size of the overall force is a nonstarter. Given the military’s current recruiting success, partitioning off “slots” for draftees could work only by turning away otherwise qualified recruits. Then, there would still only be a tiny portion of the armed forces that were draftees in a mostly all-volunteer force.
Why Bringing Back the Draft Makes No Sense Don Gomez, Small Wars Journal

Given that the Army has gone from a high of 500,000+ to a low of 470,000 and dip below that, why on earth do we need to put Americans who don’t want to join into the service?

I suspect that it’s part of the left’s plan to gut the military to pay for more social welfare. Lefty policy wonks want draftees so that they can scream about “skin in the game”. Sorry this isn’t football.

Most positions in the military are combat service and support, not shooting or kicking down doors. Most draftees would wind up fixing trucks and mopping floors. The old school Keyensian economics numbskulls think that’s a good idea. Reality is that it’s a bad idea and will turn the clock back to the hollowed out force of the 1970′s.

“The worst argument in favor of the draft ever”

Posted in HOOAH!, politcs, rankers, Uncategorized, War On Terror with tags , , , , , , , , , on 2, December 2013 by chockblock

Dana Milbank beclowns himself in the never-ending leftie quest to call for a draft. While some in government cling to the lie that military pay will “destroy the DoD”. Milbank, Tom Ricks, disgraced former general Stanley McChrystal. All trying to make good and “help” America.

Well, if they though that the right and those of us in the military would join them they were wrong.  In fact many have begun to dogpile on this forward into the past approach to the so called “civil-military divide”.

Outsidethebeltway.com’s James Joyner has some choice words for them:

That few in Congress have served in the military is lamentable for many reasons, the most obvious of which is that it not only makes them less intimately familiar with the demands of combat but also tends to undermine civil-military relations by making our civilian leaders afraid to challenge our military brass. But the notion that having worn a military uniform somehow makes one immune from partisanship and foolishness is absurd.

Milbank provides no evidence for this assertion, by the way, other than the fact that Congress seems to be more dysfunctional that it used to be.

Jonn Lilyea pulls no punches in calling a draft a horrible idea. How will we get a spoiled rotten generation through boot camp? Can we punish the “gold sticker participation trophy” kids?

No. We’ll just end up with a repeat of McNamara’s 100,000. An ill fated attempt to “educate” the young (mostly men unless the left wants to re-write the law). And given that their time in service would be two years, not much will be gotten from draftees with no sense of commitment or pride in country. And as Lilyea points out, an education, sense of civic pride are the jobs of the public education system.  If that doesn’t work boot camp won’t save the little darlings.  In today’s military Forest Gump is roadkill.

Hot Air’s Jazz Shaw follows up:

But I’m equally positive that prior service not only doesn’t need to be a requirement, but that it shouldn’t be. We keep the leadership of the civilian and military worlds separate for a reason, and we keep a very close eye on the one place where they overlap. (That being the dual nature of the President of the United States also being the Commander in Chief of the armed forces.)

Some in the left are horrified that voluntary military service is a tradition. GASP! they say. Hogwash. Either we have a first class military and honor our promise to those in uniform or we surrender the US to being a 3rd world country.

I also think there are prices too high to pay to save the United States. Conscription is one of them. Conscription is slavery, and I don’t think that any people or nation has a right to save itself at the price of slavery for anyone, no matter what name it is called. We have had the draft for twenty years now; I think this is shameful. If a country can’t save itself through the volunteer service of its own free people, then I say : Let the damned thing go down the drain!

Robert A. Heinlein Guest of Honor Speech at the 29th World Science Fiction Convention, Seattle, Washington (1961

A word about benefits and costs in the Military

Posted in army life, army training, HOOAH!, War On Terror with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on 26, November 2013 by chockblock

Gee seems personnel costs aren’t eating the DOD alive. That the DOD’s senior leadership was lying and cost are up elswhere in larger ammounts than ”’personnel”’!.

Okay, lemmie ‘splain:

In the 90′s, weapons tech was teh smexy, but the budget was low. Pay, the housing allowance and other bennies ”barely” kept up with inflation. Soldiers, sailors, airmen and marines were on food stamps. Units were cut right and left (look at a map of pre-1989 West Germany, 1995 Germany and now). Many qualified troops left as flying hours were cut, 2 aircraft were cannibalized to keep one flying and the whole being military on food stamps thing.

Slick Willie agreed to the Future Combat System, JSF and a few other weapons programs, that were delayed. He punted and was more interested in oval sex in the oral office.

So 9/11 happened, BAH and pay were on the upswing. While recruitment was up before OIF, ~2004 the numbers went down. I was there, headlines like “empty seats at Benning” were in the Army times. Then some brain dead git addicted to power point came up with the “moral waiver”. Promotion points dipped and many idiots got in. So to preserve the proggies and hardware (and fat contracts) This Aint Hell gives us the money quote:

“Congress is deeply resistant to cutting pay and benefits. So the Pentagon leadership’s rhetorical focus on soaring personnel costs may help reduce pressure on the broader military budget.

“If you focus on the least doable thing, what you gain is leverage to bring the whole budget up,” Adams said. “By pointing to the hardest thing to change, they hope that the whole budget will continue to be high.”
Stars & Stripes: Report: Pentagon emphasizing personnel, but budget costs up across the board”

Well, not only is it the “hardest thing to change”, it impacts fewer voters, because cutting actual defense spending impacts contracting and manufacturing jobs and entire local economies. Whereas, cutting the number and pay of troops affects far fewer people – people who wouldn’t ordinarily vote for the current administration and it’s less likely to have any real impact on elections.
– Jonn Lilyea slams the DoD

Yup, because having good troops leave because they can’t feed their families, pilots leave because of poor maintenance and low flying hours and a garrison military nitpicking every little behavior worked so well in the Clinton Era.

If the Bush era was one of fat waste and flushing money down the toilet, the Clinto era was one of dry rot. It was Clinton’s DOD that came up with contractors and no-bid contacts to DynCorp, KBR et al. Bush just went over the top. Far from saving money, the new soldiers of fortune cost much, much more:

“We know that sergeants in the military generally cost the Government between $50,000 to $70,000 per year. We also know that a comparable position at Blackwater costs the Federal Government over $400,000, six times as much.”

The left wants to go back to a draft so they can take money from readiness, going back to the era of a small army/navy swelling with draftees. We have members of Congress saying that we need to “slash” future bennies.

Bollocks.

What is needed is to fire the contractors, replace them with Reservists/National Guard, enlarge the Guard and Reserve and slash the DoD Civlians, O-5 and up, E-7 and up armchair warriors who’ve never deployed. End the draft.

When an Active duty US Vice Adm. Bill Moran has to “dispell rumors”, things are bad (go click on that link).

The 90′s sucked. As troops leave for better pay elsewhere, the military rots from within. I suspect that’s what some want, but do we really want a return to the 30′s Army?

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