Monday, May 31, 2010


This is coolbert:

This is really big!

Is going to have ramifications we can only guess at?

A civilian naval flotilla, purportedly carrying much needed supplies, sailing from Turkey to the Gaza Strip, intercepted on the high seas by Israeli naval commandos, numbers dead, the flotilla not able to breach the Israeli naval blockade of Gaza, ships and crews now imprisoned.

Thanks to CBS News.

"At Least 10 Killed as Israel Storms Aid Flotilla"

"Israeli Military Claims Commandos Encountered Armed Activists Who Had Planned to Attack Troops; Many Injured"

"Israeli commandos on Monday stormed six ships carrying hundreds of pro-Palestinian activists on an aid mission to the blockaded Gaza Strip, killing at least 10 people and wounding dozens after encountering unexpected resistance as the forces boarded the vessels."

Of course, even from the very beginning of Israel, from over sixty years ago now, there have been events [affairs] of this nature. Ships, carrying refugees or war munitions, intercepted on the high seas prior to arriving in what was at the time British Mandated Palestine, confrontation, conflict, lives lost.

See details of prior naval intercept here and here.

The interception of this flotilla sailing from Turkey can only make a situation that is already bad enough get much worse? Turkey and Israel have for some time now been exchanging "words" and apologies!

The Prime Minister of Israel has even called off talks with President Obama in response to the "crisis" that has now developed.

This is indeed serious and bad serious!!


Sunday, May 30, 2010


This is coolbert:

Those Maoist insurrectionists of India, forest guerrillas, draw a degree of inspiration not ONLY from Mao, but also from a home-grown phenomenon, the Dacoits of India?

"Dacoit . . . means 'a bandit'. ('A member of a class of robbers in India and Burma, who plunder in armed bands.')"

Dacoits, roaming bands of brigands, armed and dangerous. Having the forests of India as a sanctuary. A "phenomenon", actually a tradition, having an ancient lineage? Roaming forest bandits operating in "units"!

A tradition in some ways reminiscent of the hajduks of eastern Europe?

Dacoits, groups of bandits and thugs, even having a para-military aspect to the their gangsterism, engaging in traditional criminal behavior, but with an Indian twist. Banditry and criminal behavior to include:

* Poaching.
* Timber smuggling.
* Extortion.
* Kidnapping for ransom.

The dacoit, operating out of forest sanctuary, in the manner of a guerrilla, most recently epitomized by the "Robin Hood" figure of the recent late Veerappan.

Veerappan used theatrics to achieve a remarkable degree of leadership. Had panache'.
"He was wanted for killing approximately 184 people . . . poaching about 200 elephants . . . smuggling ivory worth . . . and sandalwood . . . evaded arrest for 20 years until he was killed by police in 2004"

Here Veerappan leads a "unit" of dacoits while on "patrol". Notice the standard uniform and kit, weapon! Para-military bandits! NOT mere thugs.

[Veerappan operated out of an area 6,000 kilometers in size. That is about 3,700 square miles. Quite an extensive area to hide in.]

In this photo Veerappan shows off some sort of battle drill, sporting the FN FAL rifle. Probably a captured weapon. The standard rifle as carried by soldiers of the Indian Army.

Veerappan finally tracked down and killed in a gun battle with the Indian Police. Those same folks now in conflict with the Maoist forest guerrillas.

So, the forest guerrillas of India, the Maoists, probably can find sanctuary just as did Veerappan? Seems it would be so.

Incidentally, Veereppan was devoted to the goddess Kali. The same goddess to whom the Thugee strangled victims as a form of worship! Veereppan in a deliberate manner cultivated an image that appealed to a certain spectrum of society?



This is coolbert:

Even during war time, and even when opposed by an enemy who attitude is totally intractable, it is NOT ALWAYS ADVISABLE TO CONSIDER ASSASSINATION OF THE ENEMY POLITICAL LEADER AND COMMANDER AS AN OPTION!

Decisions, made at the highest level, for instance, to assassinate Hitler, had to include a judgment as TO WHAT WOULD FOLLOW AFTERWARDS IF THE DEED WAS ACTUALLY ACCOMPLISHED!!

From the book, "The Spymasters of Israel":

[in this particular context, speaking of the late Chairman of the PLO, Yasser Arafat!]

"Politicians like Arafat are expendable. Remove one, and another, perhaps even more extreme, will spring up in his place . . . there is every advantage in maintaining in office the political leader of the other side, unless one can be sure that by removing him, one has made room for opponents whose friendliness can be guaranteed . . . Arafat represented some kind of continuity. They had learned his thought processes and could, with some confidence, predict his future actions."

Well, there you have it in a nutshell. With Yasser Arafat the Israeli felt that they had the known quantity. It would have counter-productive to remove the man from the scene, whether by assassination or by other means less violent. THAT IS NOT TO SUGGEST THAT THE MAN [YASSER] WAS CONTROLLED IN ANY MANNER, ONLY THAT HE REPRESENTED A MEASURABLE ENTITY!

With Yasser, the Israeli knew that if they pressed button A, they would get response B from Arafat. At least to a degree, the man was predictable and you had a good idea of what he would do in a given situation.

The same was true with Hitler? Hitler, while he was not referred to as such, functioned as a generalissimo? A political leader also directing the military and calling all the shots. That is my understanding of the word generalissimo.

With Hitler out of the way, Stalin and the western allies could not could upon the situation being understandable and predictable, to the extent that events could be foretold.

It was preferred to have the known quantity, as bad as that was, compared to what might follow? Such was the thinking?



This is coolbert:

More Russian attempts to re-write the history of the Second World War [WW2]? Here thanks to RIA Novosti.

"Russia Stalin twice called off Hitler assassination attempts - historian"

[the historian in this particular case is a retired Soviet general officer.]

"The Soviet leadership had at least two real chances to assassinate Adolf Hitler, but Stalin cancelled the plans"

"A concrete plan to assassinate Hitler in his bunker was developed, but Stalin suddenly cancelled it in 1943 over fears that after Hitler's death his associates would conclude a separate peace treaty with Britain and the United States"

Some comments of mine:

* Hitler did seem to have a very charmed life. Actually plots or attempts on the life of the man were in the DOZENS! NONE successful. Someone or something was "rolling" with Hitler! I don't necessarily like to think of who that someone might be.

* The British in October 1941 had alerted the Soviets to a major conference of senior German commanders - - to occur in Orsha, occupied Soviet Union. ONE OF THE PARTICIPANTS WAS SLATED TO BE HITLER! Massed Soviet Air Force aircraft could have bombed the meeting, killing all present, to include Hitler - - but nothing happened [indeed, this was the intention of the English in the first place?]. This alert was due to decrypted Ultra intercepts? That would be my guess.

* Both the Americans and British during WW2 made extraordinary efforts to allay the suspicions of Stalin that the western allies would make a separate peace with Hitler. ALL THE WHILE THE BACK-STABBER STALIN WAS CONSIDERING MAKING A SEPARATE PEACE OF HIS OWN!! As late as 1943, Molotov and Ribbentrop met in occupied Soviet territory to discuss a truce and peace between Germany and the Soviet Union!! This effort too was known to the allies. Probably again - - through decrypted Ultra intercepts!!



This is coolbert:

Here, thanks to the Christian Science Monitor, further info regarding the two American experimental "space" craft, both having a military function and dimension to them:

1. X-51A Waverider. Hypersonic cruise missile. Recently tested and successfully so!

"Air Force X-51A Waverider: faster than Superman"

"The US Air Force just flew its new X-51A Waverider at five times the speed of sound. It could be used as a hypersonic cruise missile, delivering a warhead to anywhere on earth in an hour."

My previous post on the Waverider contained three slight errors.

* The flight lasted 200 seconds and was supposed to be for 300 seconds. So the test was not an unqualified complete success. But markedly better than previous results.

"at 200 seconds, did not go as long as they had planned. An 'anomaly' terminated the flight short of its 300-second goal."

* Waverider achieved a speed of ONLY Mach 5, NOT Mach 6!

* I had thought the Waverider was going to "go on line" last year. A weapons system in the inventory and ready to go, launched by a B-52 bomber anywhere in the world. NO - - the hypersonic cruise missile delivering thousands of tungsten rods upon target will not be ready until 2015.

"a hypersonic cruise missile by as soon as 2015."

The hypersonic cruise missile deployed with a CONVENTIONAL WARHEAD consisting of thousands [?] of tungsten rods, having an awesome capability.

"That would provide the Air Force a long-sought Prompt Global Strike capability, defined as the ability to target any spot on earth with a conventional warhead within 60 minutes"

2. X-37B "space plane". A mini-Space Shuttle - - unmanned - - "flown" remotely. Mission not totally understood by the lay public - - classified SECRET!

"Now that the X-37B space plane is spotted, what is its mission?"

The world-wide network of amateur astronomers tracking space vehicles have located and determined the orbital track of the X-37B! An orbit that places the space craft in a position for immediate military applications!

"Amateur astronomers say they have found the X-37B in an orbit that takes it over Afghanistan and Iraq."

"A former Air Force missile officer offers up four possible uses for the space plane – and weapon is least likely."




4. "WEAPON."

We surely have not hear the last from either of these two "space craft".

Indeed the extreme non-nuclear lethality and versatility of the Waverider, when the system is deployed, makes it likely that further reductions in the nuclear weapons force of the U.S. is a do-able thing!

"What wonders hath man wrought!!" - - Bert.


Saturday, May 29, 2010

Land Navigation!

This is coolbert:

"the cheating was actually more widespread than this incident would indicate."

This headline startles? Thanks to StrategyPage for the lead!

"USMC Fires Officers For Cheating"

"May 28, 2010: The U.S. Marine Corps recently discharged 13 recently commissioned 2nd lieutenants, for cheating on a land navigation test. With GPS available for over two decades, young officers going through their post-commissioning training frequently cheat on the navigation field test (using compass, maps and dead reckoning to find ammo cans in a wilderness)."

"Marine commanders point out that GPS can be jammed, and officers have to be ready to do without it . . . Cheating . . . demonstrates that the officer is unreliable . . . The marines expects more from its officers."



* All officers and NCO's in the U.S. military must possess a good knowledge of land navigation. Must pass a test, move cross-country, land navigate during the ordinary training and leadership courses requisite for promotion and qualification.

* Land navigation in my experience has been the # 1 failing for those folks not able to make the grade as an officer or as a NCO! NOT able to master map reading and land navigation means no promotion and possibly discharge.

* GPS may be jammed, your GPS unit may not work, or the batteries may go dead at the wrong moment. A multiplicity of things can go wrong. AND WE SHOULD NOT PRECLUDE THE POSSIBILITY THAT AT SOME FUTURE DATE AN ENEMY ENGAGING IN CYBER-WARFARE WILL INTRUDE INTO THE GPS SYSTEM AND BE ABLE TO ISSUE FALSE NAVIGATIONAL SIGNALS!!

* I guess that traditional map reading and land navigation are therefore still a basic subject for study in the military. GPS has NOT made the map, the compass, the ruler, the edged paper with markings obsolete?

* Some years ago now, during his infamous television diatribe, the then Commandant of the Marines, General Mundy, described the inability of some officers [?] to do well at land navigation: "they don't follow a course on the ground from a map as well"

* Maybe being a Marine officer is more difficult than getting into Harvard Law School? This too has been suggested. Well, that the Marines expect A LOT from their officers is worthy, and that standards are being maintained is worthy too. Unreliability in an officer is not sustainable!!



This is coolbert:

The Russian connection?

From the previous blog entry:

"Simmons went on to say 'Such techniques have been used by the Russians on several different occasions'."

And here with - - thanks to the Russian Times from three weeks ago now. The full story of how a nuclear munition charge was used to extinguish a gas well leak and fire in the old Soviet Union. A fire that had been burning undiminished for THREE YEARS! Unstoppable until some big time nuke was applied.

"Soviet nuclear solution could be part of tactics to halt oil spill off US coast"

"Russian experts think Soviet history may offer a radical solution."

According to the wiki, such technology, the use of a nuclear weapon to "plug" a leaking gas well, was tried and was successful on several occasions:

"one 30 kiloton explosion was used to close the Uzbekistan Urtabulak gas well in 1966 that had been blowing since 1963, and a few months later a 47 kiloton explosive was used to seal a higher pressure blowout at the nearby Pamuk gas field."

Extraordinary circumstances require extraordinary measures.



This is coolbert:

"'tell BP it is time to leave'."

By now devoted readers to the blog are fully aware of the oil well blowout in the Gulf of Mexico, with disastrous results for the environment.

And how British Petroleum [BP] has made numerous apparently valiant but futile efforts to plug the blowout, using all and every conventional method in the inventory. CONVENTIONAL!!

Here - - Simmons - - an investment banker knowledgeable in the oil industry and who specializes in loaning money for oil exploration purposes - - calls for much more drastic measures. Measures hitherto never tried by American concerns - - perhaps only by the Russians?

The nuclear option. Place a nuclear munition charge near the blowout and detonate. Hopefully sealing the blowout in the process. Drastic circumstances requiring drastic measures!!

"Simmons Calls For Obama to Take Over BP; Military To Nuke Oil Leak"

"Some questions were also brought up that pertained to a nuclear device and how the military could lower one 18,000 feet into the well bore."

[the actual depth of the blowout is at 5,000 below sea level. Again, a hitherto unknown depth for this type of problem to be resolved. Oceanic pressures being what they are in waters that deep!]

"Simmons went on to say 'Such techniques have been used by the Russians on several different occasions'."

Never heard of such a thing before. Conventional explosives on the surface as done by Red Adair and Boots & Coots. But not Nukes. Use a nuke to plug an oil well blowout? This has been done by the Russians? If anyone would know, it would be Simmons?

Whoa boy!!



This is coolbert:

"the single biggest internal security challenge ever faced by our country." - - Prime Minister Singh.

Here from the wiki is the info on the Indian Maoists that are currently waging an insurrectionist war! A Mao-style three stage war of revolution. Out with the old, in with the new being the intention.

Maoist oriented Indian revolutionaries, have become very active lately, in for the "long haul", and disruptive in a way that just a few years ago was not thought to be possible.

"The Communist Party of India (Maoist) is a Maoist political party in India which aims to overthrow the government of India. It was founded on September 21, 2004"

Founded in 2004 BUT SHOULD NOT BE THOUGHT TO BE A RECENT PHENOMENON ONLY! From over forty years ago such Maoist inspired rebellion has been afoot in India. Called originally Naxalites.

"The CPI (Maoist) are often referred to as Naxalites in reference to the violent Naxalbari insurrection conducted by radical Maoists in West Bengal in 1967."

And - - again, adherents to the Maoist philosophy using the three-stage revolutionary guerrilla warfare concept. People's War - - People's Army!!

"It is claimed by the Communist Party of India (Maoist) that it is conducting 'people's war', a strategical line developed by Mao Zedong during the phase of guerrilla warfare of the Communist Party of China"

The Maoists of India are at somewhat of a disadvantage here? NOT able to succeed and overthrow the established regime. They lack at least one of the three criteria as enunciated by Mao for insurrectionist success??

According to Mao, the guerrilla communist "people's war" could not succeed unless three elements were present. These being:

1. Support of the people.
2. A sanctuary from which to operate.
3. The support of a foreign power.

The Indian Maoists do not have a foreign benefactor they can count upon for aid and assistance? Support of the people is there, but not widespread? Sanctuary of the jungle, the mountains, etc., is too lacking. The forest guerrilla of India is not immune from counter-guerrilla operations?

These Maoists are in their own minds are just in the beginning stage of a prolonged conflict that will drag on for decades? These "people's war" type of conflicts can go on for a long time!


Friday, May 28, 2010

Three Stages.

This is coolbert:

For those wondering what the Maoists of India [and Maoists anywhere else in the world for that matter} espouse and how they conduct warfare, here is the concentrated and abbreviated dope.

Revolution, insurrection, the overthrow of the established order, the forces of the central government, the oppressive ancien regime cast aside and replaced by the benevolence of the communist dictatorship!

"an·cien ré·gime - - 2. A sociopolitical or other system that no longer exists"

Mao, the Chinese Great Helmsman, theorizing that "people's war", an insurrection by the "downtrodden masses" could succeed by following a three stage approach. An "approach" that would follow as:

"Maoist theory of people's war divides warfare into three phases. In the first phase, the guerrillas gain the support of the population through the distribution of propaganda and attacks on the machinery of government. In the second phase, escalating attacks are made on the government's military and vital institutions. In the third phase, conventional fighting is used to seize cities, overthrow the government, and take control of the country." - - Mao's seminal work, "On Guerrilla Warfare"

The three stages - - to repeat - - are:

1. Organization and preparation. NOT necessarily violent.

2. Guerrilla warfare in the classic sense. Highly-mobile squad size units primarily conducting the "war of the flea" type of warfare. Ambush, raid, sniping, mining.

3. Conventional warfare. Guerrilla bands coalescing into larger and larger units, platoon, company and finally battalion size formations, marching on the capital, fighting a more or less conventional type of battle against the military of the "central government".


The communist revolutionary movement in Vietnam [Indo-China] had begun Phase One of the three-stage approach in the 1920's. Preparation of the battlefield [often referred to as agitation and propaganda [agit-prop]] for combat with the French. By the time the American military arrived in Vietnam in force [mid-1960's], the communists had been in conflict [violent and non-violent] with the forces of the "central government" for almost FORTY YEARS PRIOR!!


Scramjet & Maoists.

This is coolbert:

More stuff from the Chicago Tribune today:


1. "Hypersonic record set"

"WASHINGTON - - An experimental aircraft has set a record for hypersonic flight, flying more than three minutes at Mach 6 - - six times the speed of sound."

"The X-51A Waverider was released from a B-52 [bomber] off the coast of Southern California coast Wednesday morning . . . Its scramjet engine accelerated the vehicle to Mach 6, and it flew autonomously for 200 seconds."

Waverider. The hypersonic attack vehicle, part "airplane" and part "space plane"! Designed to be launched by a B-52, able to hit and obliterate any target on the planet within 30 minutes, tungsten rods having prodigious energy levels providing a non-nuclear option for strategic threats!!


2. "Trains crash after blast on rebels' turf in India"

"NEW DELHI - - Two trains collided after a blast hit a passenger train and flung it into the path of a speeding freight train Friday in eastern India, killing at least 25 people."

"The incident occurred in an area known to be a stronghold of Maoist rebels."

Maoists at work again! Derailing a train with explosives, and apparently quite expertly so too! Derail the passenger train so that collides with another train on an adjacent track at the same time. Quite pre-meditated, diabolical, cold-blooded!

For some reason, the Maoists of India feel emboldened in a way they have not been prior? This is becoming a serious internal threat to the government of India?


Thursday, May 27, 2010


This is coolbert:

From the previous blog entry:

"Black has some special martial significance to the Muslim?"

"The color black is a very significant color in the Islamic tradition. It is linked to both the battle flag of Muhammad (al-rawa) and to the medieval Abbasid Caliphate. In this sense, it most often represents jihad and the caliphate, evoking a historical sense of both concepts. Black is also used to show religious adherence and strict piety in both the Sunni and Shiite traditions . . . In jihadi imagery the color black is usually employed to emphasize the importance (or occurrence) of jihad and evokes sentiments regarding the perceived need to re-establish the Sunni caliphate"

The re-establishment of the Caliphate is something that Osama so dearly desires. The umma [Islamic nation world-wide], residing under the rule of a sovereign who is ordained so under Islamic law [sharia]! The Caliphate is a Sunni concept, not Shia? Hezbollah recall is Shia!

Jihad in the sense as understood by Hezbollah meaning war - - battle - - and not the striving for inner perfection and control!!

NO mention here of those dressed in black as being prospective candidates or volunteers for martyrdom operations [suicide bomber]!!



This is coolbert:

Thanks to the World Wide Web [WWW], some images of the best light infantry in the world. Hezbollah fighters. BEST according to the the man who at the time was # 3 at the FBI.

Pronounced and declared as a terrorist organization, ruthless in the extreme, dominating Lebanon as a non-state entity, in league with the Iranians, Shia militia able to conduct a variety of missions, military, quasi-military, individual troops even able to act as lone wolves if necessary, far from home base, and most successfully too!!

Fighters at some sort of formal ceremony. Green tunics and cargo pants, pistol belts, red berets, some sporting beards, giving the fascist salute!! Please note the women in the background, all in full Islamic dress, complete with head scarves. Hez is hard-core and demands modest decorum from adherents!

Here Hezbollah troops in total black, with headbands. These are volunteers for martyrdom operations? Again, giving the fascist salute. Seeing that type of saluting must further endear the Hezbollah to the Israeli!!

High-stepping formal occasion complete with spats and gloves!! That must be an officer in front? Hezbollah favors American desert camouflage when available? That form of marching, the holding of the pistol belt while doing the high-stepping is typical for the armies of the Arab world.

These are not the American Green Berets! Hez fighters in the all-black uniform again, this time with the beret complete with the Hezbollah flash, the green raised arm on the yellow background. The hand of the arm holding an AK of course! Black has some special martial significance to the Muslim?

Once more, the lavish spectacle. Lots of Hez logo on yellow background flag, the desert camouflage, the beret with flash, the fascist salute. NOT SURE why Hezbollah is so fond of the fascist salute. The Christian Falange at one time in Lebanon was considered to be quasi-fascist? But this a Shia Islamic militia, not Christian.

With Hezbollah, something clicked in a marked way that did not occur with the Palestinian Authority and their Fatah, for instance. Fatah and the various Palestinian commando units as fighting groups just never reached the level of competency as has the Lebanese Shia Hezbollah. These guys are determined and ready, even eager for further combat against Israel. Some bad hombres, not to be slighted, ignored, of demeaned in any manner!!


Wednesday, May 26, 2010


This is coolbert:

Here with more hot intel dope on the North Korean/South Korean/U.S. response to the sinking of the ROKS Cheonan.

Thanks again to Harry and the web site Sharkhunters:

"We are all aware that tensions are running high since North Korea apparently torpedoed a South Korean destroyer with each side rattling their sabres louder and louder while the world watches, holding their breath . . . At this moment, it looks like things could get much worse before they get better."

Thanks to a source through MARCONI courtesy of Sharkhunters we have this:

"Frantic activity over the last 12 hours on most Mil and Naval frequencies heard in my area. Also increased Japanese and US Mil activity notes in the Sea of Japan and East China Sea."

Devoted readers to the blog will be kept appraised as more is learned. This affair is NOT cooling down - - this has the potentiality to heat up? And big time too!!


Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Machine Gun.

This is coolbert:

"Whoever it was that said the pen was mightier than the sword obviously has not encountered automatic weapons!!" - - D. Mac Arthur.

How so very true!! Intuitively so!!

Perhaps no weapon more epitomized the Great War [WW1] than the machine gun.

Prodigious numbers of the automatic-firing machine gun dominated the battlefield of WW1.

An industrialized, mechanized, mass-assembly, by-the-numbers type of warfare - - impersonal destruction most exemplified by a death-dealing MACHINE!!

British troop from the era of the Great War manning his Vickers machine gun. Firing six hundred rounds per minute and VERY reliable. Gunners attempting to surrender during WW1 were normally shot dead on sight by enemy riflemen.

Lines of advancing infantry on the offensive, out in the open, no cover, crossing "no-mans'" land with the intention of getting their grips on the enemy, "mowed down" on the battlefield in a manner as would have been a crop harvested by a reaper, a mechanical apparatus having only a modicum of human intervention!! MOWED DOWN!!

In his book, "The Face of Battle", Sir John Keegan describes the machine gun and the analog of same to an industrial process:

"the most important thing about a machine-gun is that it is a machine, and one of a quite an advanced type, similar in some respects to a high-precision lathe, in others to an automatic press. Like a lathe, it requires to be set up, so that it will operate within desired and predetermined limits . . . by adjusting the angle of the barrel relative to its fixed firing platform, and tightening or loosening its traversing screw. Then like an automatic press, it would, when actuated by a simple trigger, begin and continue to perform its functions with the minimum of human attention, supplying its own power and only requiring a steady supply of raw material [ammo] and little routine maintenance to operate efficiently throughout a working shift."

It should be noted too that a tripod-mounted and sighted machine-gun, being used defensively, did not even need to be aimed! Grazing fire being employed, the operator of the MACHINE-GUN only being required to traverse the gun from left-to-right, right-to-left and back again, over and over, regularly firing bursts of ammunition as the traversing process occurs, a properly sighted machine gun designed to deliver grazing fire having the rounds be no more than a meter high at a range of 400 meters!!

"Grazing fire is . . . defined . . . as 'Fire approximately parallel to the ground where the center of the cone of fire does not rise above one meter from the ground.'”

Machine-guns too having an inherent design feature of advantage to the gunner, again, making the job of firing and hitting the target that much easier, the "cone of fire"!

"most light machine guns are not designed for repeatability of aim or accuracy. Most are designed with a small degree of inaccuracy, in order to lay down a field of fire. This is referred to as the 'cone' of fire, because the rounds spread out."

The machine-gun of the WW1 era in a machine-like fashion - - again - - as a harvester reaping a crop in a field. The crop unfortunately being advancing infantrymen walking into a "wall of steel"!

This particular drawing by the famous German artist Otto Dix is entitled: "Machine Gunners Advancing". Please note that the mountain consists of human skulls, one German troop apparently totally revolted by what he is seeing!! Dix himself spent four years at the front as a member of a machine gun crew! Very evocative - - is it not!!


Sunday, May 23, 2010


This is coolbert:

Another one of those serendipitous discoveries:

"Prisoner of War guard companies, or an equivalent organization, should be as far forward as possible in action to take over prisoners of war, because troops heated with battle are not safe custodians. Any attempt to rob or loot prisoners of war by escorts must be dealt strictly with." - - G.S. Patton.

This quote attributed to General Patton is right on the money.

"Heated" troops are NOT safe custodians of POW. Normally military police [MP] are entrusted with the safeguarding of enemy POW. Handling, processing, guarding, etc.

"Any attempt to rob or loot" - - or for that matter - - SHOOT PRISONERS OF WAR will be dealt with strictly! In this specific case Patton has particularly in mind the spontanteous and ill-advised execution of captured enemy!

"The British soldier is a kindly fellow and it is safe to say, despite the dope, seldom oversteps the mark of barbaric propriety in France, save occasionally to kill prisoners he cannot be bothered to escort back to his lines." - - F. Crozier.

Those front-line infantry actually in mortal combat with the enemy must also be allowed to continue their mission, NOT having to be burdened with guarding or moving enemy POW to the rear. Infantry are trained in the 5S of POW handling, but beyond that MP's and special guard companies should take over!

* Search.
* Silence.
* Segregate.
* Speed.
* Safeguard.

Patton had it right! Intuitively so!



This is coolbert:

"Fixed fortifications are monuments to the stupidity of man." - - G.S Patton.

Here from the book by Dupuy, "understanding War" another of those timeless verities of war:

# 6 "Defenders' chances of success are directly proportional to fortification strength."

"To some modern military things this is a truism needing no explanation or justification. others have asserted that prepared defenses are attractive traps to be avoid at all costs. Such assertions, however either ignore or misread historical examples. History is so fickle that it is dangerous for historians to use such words as 'always' or 'never'."

"One can cite as historical examples the overcoming of the Maginot Line, the Mannerheim Line, the Siegfried Line and the Bar Lev Line, and from these examples conclude that these fortifications FAILED. SUCH A CONCLUSION IS ABSOLUTELY WRONG." [my emphasis!!]

In the modern era - - fortifications are considered an anachronism without merit. NOT ONLY without merit, but a strong negative. This is the prevailing wisdom and perception, both among the astute military mind and the lay public both?!

And I think we have an intuitive sense of what we are speaking about when we talk of "fortifications". Defensive barriers, often arrayed in depth, consisting of anti-tank obstacles, belts of barbed wire, minefields, concrete reinforced pillboxes, bunkers, gun emplacements, strong-points, all connected together as part of a comprehensive defensive "line".

Fortifications should NEVER be considered to be totally impervious to attack. Rather, should be thought of as a barrier the intent of which is to slow down, retard the forward-motion of, cause casualties and make your enemy [the attacker] deploy and disperse!!

A barrier while not totally impenetrable, nonetheless presenting a formidable challenge to the attacker, offensive action being negated - - the cost of a frontal assault being so cost prohibitive!!

This too from Dupuy regarding the effectiveness of the Maginot Line in 1940:

"The French were defeated mainly because they did not put enough faith in the strength of that line."

"They deployed their forces equally along the frontier, leaving four armies behind the fortifications, when one - - at most - - would have been required."

"If the French had had available . . . one, or two, or three of the armies that were sitting idly useless in and behind the Maginot Line, they could at least have stopped The German [in 1940]."

We have to be clear about this! The German in 1940 HAD recognized the Maginot Line was an effective barrier - - too formidable for a frontal assault to succeed.

The French - - however - - had deployed four armies BEHIND THE LINE - - a terrible waste of manpower and material that could have been used better elsewhere. The German attack and the Battle of France - - 1940 could have gone the way of the allies, if those armies had been redeployed!

And this from the wiki is most germane:

"Part of the rationale for the Maginot line stemmed from the massive French losses during the First World War, and their effects on French demographics . . . Faced with inadequate personnel resources, French planners had to rely more on older and less fit reservists"

"Defense is the stronger form of combat!" - - Clausewitz.

A demographic shortfall for the French meant that not enough fit young men were available to man mobile, rapid moving units the technology of the era demanded. The French had to go with what they had. Older, out-of-shape reservists fighting a defensive battle, manning the fighting positions of the Maginot Line could have given a good account of themselves.

There is a role even in modern warfare for modern fortifications? If the limitations of fortifications are understood by military planners and politicians both, I would have to think so. For a military strapped of funding and personnel, fortifications offer an alternative to an intractable situation?


Friday, May 21, 2010


This is coolbert:

Thanks to the web site DiggerHistory, some photographs of the trench club.

[Australian soldiers are referred to as "diggers"!]

From the era of the Great War [WW1], caveman-like weaponry for that very up-close and personal form of combat, the trench raid. Barbaric, savage, mano-a-mano deadly warfare necessitating primitive weaponry - - the simpler the better!

Weaponry carried for close-quarters combat of the type as you might imagine would be engaged in by "street-gang" members, thugs, rioters!!

My original thoughts were that the "trench clubs" more than likely resembled a belaying pin as would be found aboard a sailing ship of the pre-war era. That seems NOT to be the case. A weapon more along the lines of an American baseball bat with metal attachments for increased lethality.

"This is an original example of a trench club obtained from a long-standing collection. The club is made from turned hardwood and pressed with hobnails. The head has been drilled out and filled with lead. There is no way to know if this is a German or Allied trench club. Contrary to popular myth, these clubs were not produced by individuals. They were produced in mass by units in the field utilizing regimental carpenters and welders etc to produce large amounts of the same pattern of club."

"Trench club, cast iron head on a rough timber shaft, marked S&W, 1914/18."

And this too! A "short handled German trench pick". Obviously an "implement" that could do a lot of damage! Cleave your head open right down the center if need be!

"Short handled German trench pick. Although designed as a tool these were often used in the hand to hand fighting of the trenches."

Well, take your "pick"! Don't leave home without it!

Aren't I the funny one?



This is coolbert:


A Maginot line in the Middle East? The old ways are the best ways?

Here thanks to the DEBKAfile:

"Syria, Hizballah build a fortified wall in E. Lebanon"

"15 May: This massive fortification will run from Rashaya Al Wadi on the western slopes of Mt. Hermon in the south to the Lebanese Beqaa Valley town of Aita el-Foukhar, in the north, DEBKAfile's military sources reveal. When finished, the 22-km long structure running parallel to the Lebanese-Syrian border will be one of the biggest fortified structures in the Middle East, designed to block off any Israeli tank thrust through Lebanon to Damascus

"sources report that the project is so immense and the work so intensive, that shops in Damascus have run out of cement, forcing many other construction works in Syria to a standstill."

In case of push comes to shove and there is overt war between Israel and the Hezbollah/Syrian connection, this "wall", this fortification will act as a significant barrier, countering a possible massive attack by Israeli Merkava tanks, destination downtown Damascus??

From the timeless verities of combat as listed by Trevor Dupuy:

# 6. "Defenders chances of success are directly proportional to fortification strength." "At the very least fortifications will delay an attacker and add to his casualties, at best, fortifications will enable the defender to defeat the attacker."

Can't people just learn to get along?

NO, they can't!!


ROKS Cheonan.

This is coolbert:


Thanks to Harry and for the latest dope on the sinking of the ROKS Cheonan.

"More and more Intel is coming across our desk to indicate that the South Korean warship that was recently sunk with heavy loss of life was the victim of a North Korean torpedo............some of this Intel tells that this was a German made torpedo but bought and fired by a North Korean ship - it was not a mine, we are told."

Sharkhunters - - a group of enthusiasts - - has a lot of sources, world-wide, knowledgeable in all aspects of submersible warfare, historic, current, and otherwise.

When Sharkhunters speaks, you should listen!

Visit their [Sharkhunters] web site and see for yourself. Enjoy!


Thursday, May 20, 2010


This is coolbert:

This is serendipitous? Almost a synchronicity?

"ser·en·dip·i·ty - – noun aptitude for making desirable discoveries by accident."

"Synchronicity is the experience of two or more events that are apparently causally unrelated occurring together in a meaningful manner."

Here with some qualifiers, some clarifications, regarding the previous blog entry.

I am watching late last night a public TV broadcast - - the subject being the development of armored vehicles, from the time of the ancient Egyptians to present [3000 B.C. to 2000 A.D.]

And the British "Mother" Mark I tank of course is a subject for discussion.

1. As regard to the mechanical robustness of "Mother":

"tanks [to include "Mother"] were of the most basic and untried design, rushed into production, no real working out of "issues". Subject to breakdown, difficult to keep running under all circumstances, NOT RELIABLE from a mechanical standpoint!!"

Of those English tanks attempting to cross "no-mans'" land, from the English side to the German trenches, ONLY ABOUT ONE-THIRD [1/3] OF THE TANKS WOULD ACTUALLY MAKE THE COMPLETE CROSSING, THE REST BREAKING DOWN ALONG THE WAY DUE TO MECHANICAL DIFFICULTIES!!

2. Plunging artillery or mortar rounds, striking the top of the tank, setting off the fuel tanks, incinerating the crew:

"Incinerated crews were removed by special Salvage Companies, who also salvaged damaged tanks. They were forbidden to speak about this aspect of their work with still living tank crews"


[probably too the soles of the shoes melted to the metal "deck" of the tank!!]

Well, the tank of the WW1 era was a good idea, but the technology of the time did not allow for a robust machine that could "perform" adequately. That much is clear.


Tuesday, May 18, 2010


This is coolbert:

Here with info on tanks of the Great War [WW1].

Ponderous, ungainly "beasts". An effort, first by the English, then the French, and most belatedly the German, to "solve" the impasse of the stalemated trench warfare as found on the Western Front.

Rudimentary and basic designs. Basically a metal box placed over a conventional tractor of the period.

Designs, very tentative, to solve the three problems as associated with armor vehicles. Find that correct combination of:

* Firepower. Ability to kill.
* Mobility. Ability to move.
* Protection. Degree of armor necessary.

1. British Mark I tank. "Mother". A tank coming in the "male" and "female" varieties.

* Male: two 6-pounder [57 mm gun] QF, four 8 mm Hotchkiss Machine Guns.
* Female: two .303 Vickers Machine Guns, four 8 mm Hotchkiss Machine Guns.

2. French Char-Schneider.

* 75 mm Blockhaus Schneider [gun].
* Two 8 mm Hotchkiss machine guns.

3. German A7V.

* [One] 57 mm gun.
* 6 × 7.9 mm machine guns.


* The English Mark I was referred to as a "landship". Operated by naval ratings [?], naval terms associated with tanks to this day! The hull, the periscope, the turret, etc. Churchill, in his capacity as First Lord of the Admiralty, was instrumental in the development of "Mother"!

* Accompanying and providing fire support to infantry advancing in the open was a primary mission of the original tank. Also cutting and breaching the multiple "belts" of barbed wire found on the WW1 battlefield. In some instances, "belts" of barbed wire fifteen layers deep!!!

* All these tanks were of the most basic and untried design, rushed into production, no real working out of "issues". Subject to breakdown, difficult to keep running under all circumstances, NOT RELIABLE from a mechanical standpoint!!

* Downright dangerous to be a crew member. The tank itself was quite often more lethal than the enemy.

"The environment inside . . . was contaminated with poisonous carbon monoxide, fuel and oil vapours from the engine and cordite fumes from the weapons . . . Entire crews lost consciousness or became violently sick when again exposed to fresh air."

"violently sick when again exposed to fresh air."

"To counter the fumes inside and the danger of bullet splash or fragments and rivets knocked off the inside of the hull, the crew wore helmets with goggles and chain mail masks"

Spall - - fragments of the metal interior flaking off and flying around the inside of the tank at high speed were a great danger to the crew. CREW MEMBERS WORE MASKS THAT HAD A CHAIN MAIL VEIL!!

"A direct hit on the roof by an artillery or mortar shell could cause the fuel tanks . . . to burst open. Incinerated crews were removed by special Salvage Companies, who also salvaged damaged tanks. They were forbidden to speak about this aspect of their work with still living tank crews"

Ever since the development of the tank, death by incineration has always been a major worry to tank crews. A very high percentage of Israeli tankers killed during the 1973 Yom Kippur war were burned to death in their "Magach" M48 tanks. Seems the Soviets had gotten hold of U.S. tank manuals, studied them, and found the exact perfect spot for HEAT round to rupture high temperature hydraulic fluid lines in the M48, sending a lethal spew of high temp liquid coursing about the interior of tank, killing all the crew members.

"A once popular joke in the IDF said that 'Magach' stands for 'Movil Gviyot Charukhot' — 'charred bodies carrier', probably referring to the Yom Kippur War losses and particularly to the . . . flammable hydraulic fluid problem of the M48."

[Incidentally - - Char as in Char-Schneider stand for chariot!]

The "tank of the WW1 era was JUST NOT ROBUST ENOUGH as a mechanical apparatus to be effective? The idea was worthy, and we must remember that the entire field of "automotive" engineering was still in the infancy stage. Tactics, doctrine, employment of the tank as a weapon of war too had not been thoroughly hashed out - - commanders were at a loss in most cases as to how best use the "beast"?




This is coolbert:

"I don't' use the word 'war,' . . . I have never used it and I don't like using it. It is a challenge and a very serious challenge." - - Indian governmental official.

The Maoist guerrillas of India active again with a vengeance.

These forest guerrillas, insurgents, Mao-style terrorists, the source of a previous blog entry from over a month ago now.

Killing both police and civilians this time.

From the Chicago Tribune today:

"India roadside bomb destroys bus, killing 35"

"Officials blame Maoists battling government; toll include 16 police officers"

"NEW DELHI - - A roadside bomb ripped apart a bus filled with police officers and civilians Monday in Central India, killing at least 35 persons, authorities said."

"Maoists operate in 20 of India's 28 states and have 10,000 to 20,000 fighters, according to the home Ministry."

NO, this is war and nothing but war. And the Maoists have been around for a long time now, four decades or so. NOT going to go away. These are insurgents following the three-stage insurgency Maoists model. At this moment in the guerrilla warfare stage [#2], having not reached the main-force stage [#3]!

The left-wing extremist Maoists also favor the use of women as combatants? Up to 30 % of armed "fighters" are women, as has been also the case in neighboring Nepal!


Sunday, May 16, 2010


This is coolbert:

Here, at least to my way of thinking, are two examples from the Great War [WW1] demonstrative of how the German commander, at the most senior level, perhaps was superior to his allied counter-part. German commanders, in charge of "lesser" troops, most successful on the battlefield, indicative of "superior" command abilities.

1. Liman von Sanders.

Commander, the most senior, of the Turkish troops at Gallipoli. A German general officer directing the battle at the highest echelon, in furtherance of Turkish victory.

It has been said that Ataturk [Mustafa Kamal] was the victor at Gallipoli. Kamal did command a Turkish infantry division during the campaign, and most successfully too. Stood his ground, his soldiers inspired, never relinquishing an inch to the allied attackers.

Von Sanders, however, was in overall command of the ENTIRE Turkish force deployed at Gallipoli. Made all [?] the major decisions, the Turkish government deferring to von Sanders, A FOREIGN NATIONAL!!

The Turkish government would have realized that their troops as individuals were the equal of any other in the world, the Turkish army, however, NOT possessisng commanders at the highest echelons who were knowledgable in formulating strategy, employing the operational art, etc.

"operational art - - (DOD) The application of creative imagination by commanders and staffs - . . . to design strategies, campaigns, and major operations and organize and employ military forces."

Operational art usually meaning the movement of large-scale units, division or greater, in concert, maneuver to achieve strategic aims!!

2. Colmar von der Goltz.

Known by the respectful Turkish title of Pasha. Among the Turk, Von der Goltz would have been referred to as Goltz Pasha.

Again, a German senior military commander in charge of Turkish troops, commanding in combat against the British.

Von der Goltz, a old-school Prussian officer, while in command of Turkish forces, victorious over British Indian Army troops at Al Kut [modern day Iraq].

Von der Goltz, having to fight in the manner of Caesar [the divine Julius] at Alesia, 2,000 years earlier. Fight in two directions at once, British eventual capitulation being THE WORST SUFFERED BY THE ENGLISH DURING WW1!!

"the most abject capitulation in Britain’s military history."

I would suggest that the English saw the Turk as a "lesser" opponent that would represent an "easy time" on the battlefield.

Those Turkish troops, when COMMANDED BY SUPERIOR GERMAN OFFICERS AT THE HIGHEST ECHELONS, did fight in an admirable manner, much to the consternation of the British!!

Incidentally, in 2003, an announced goal of the British forces in the Iraq War was to refurbish and tend-to the graves of the English war dead from Al Kut!! Such was the memory of what occurred during that dolorous time of the Great War!!


Eastern Front.

This is coolbert:

"it is important to recall that, almost until the end of the ear, it had been fed on a diet of victory:" - -Sir John Keegan.

IT! IT of course being the German Army during the Great War [WW1]. Victories on the Eastern Front to include but not limited to:

* 1914 - - Tannenberg.
* 1915 - - Gorlice-Tarnow.
* 1916 - - Romania.
* 1917 - - Caporetto.

The German army, content with stalemate on the Western Front, but NOT content with stalemate on the Eastern Front.

To an extent as NOT seen against the allies [French and British], a war of movement occurring, German troops taking advantage of "lesser" opponents on the battlefield.

Superior German units [1st Corps of the 8th Army was considered to be the "best" in the German Army, circa 1914!!], commanded by superior commanders, German troops employed aggressively achieving major victories of a surprising and overwhelming - - sometimes even grotesquely overwhelming nature when compared to the stalemated situation vis-a-vis the French and British!!

"vis-à-vis - - adverb 1.face to face: - – adjective 2.face-to-face: relation to; compared with: 5.facing; opposite:"

This all occurring on the Eastern Front of the Great War!!

Am I flippant and discourteous when speaking of the Russians, Romanians, Italians as "lesser" opponents?

Too, the armistice with Russian [1917], did allow the German high command to release 1 million combat troops for duty on the Western Front. Those German "Spring Offensives" nearly succeeding in destroying also the western allies - - German victory in WW1 almost a consequence!!


Friday, May 14, 2010


This is coolbert:

"'Quoi qu'on fasse, on perd beaucoup de monde.' ('Whatever you do,' (i.e. attack or defend) 'you lose a lot of men.')." - - Charles Mangin.

Charles Mangin, French general officer of the Great War [WW1], affectionately [?] referred to by his men as "The Butcher"!

Back to the subject of:

"9. 'That the British and the French had the better armies (Ferguson claims the German Army was superior)'"

"10. 'That the Allies were more efficient at killing Germans (Ferguson argues that the Germans were more efficient at killing the Allies)'"

From the "myths" of WW1.

Here with a list, not totally inclusive, and not selected with any "malice aforethought" or prejudice in any manner, those important "Battles of the First World War" [WW1], with special regard to causalities.

A listing confined to those combat engagements, combat actions, on the Western Front.

A listing showing extracts from the wiki entries in all cases.

Combatants in all cases English versus German, French versus German, or allies [English and French combined] versus German!

Casualties including all dead [KIA], wounded, captured [PoW] and missing. Missing in many cases a goodly portion of the whole, troops assumed to have been killed, bodies blown into smithereens or buried alive or otherwise, covered over in a trench, body not recovered [BNR]! In many cases, casualties "disputed", figures not totally clear, "ballpark", as they say!!

By chronological order:

1. First Battle of the Marne. [September 1914]

Casualties and losses:
Allies - - 263,000 German - - 220,000 Ratio 1.195:1. Advantage German.

2. First Battle of Ypres. [October 1914]

Casualties and losses:
Allies - - 145,000 German - - 135,000 Ratio 1.07:1. Advantage German.

3. First Battle of Champagne. [December 1914]

Casualties and losses:
French - - 90,000 German - - 90,000 Ratio 1:1. Advantage neither.

4. Battle of Neuve Chapelle. [March 1915]

Casualties and losses:
British - - 11,200 German - - 10,600 killed Ratio 1.05:1. Advantage German.

5. Second Battle of Ypres. [April 1915]

Casualties and losses:
Allies - - 70,000 Germans - - 35,000 Ratio 2:1. Advantage German.

6. Second Battle of Artois. [May 1915]

Casualties and losses:
Allies - - 110,000 German - - 75,000 Ratio 1.48:1. Advantage German.

7. Third Battle of Artois. [September 1915]

Casualties and losses:
Allies - - 110,000 German - - 51,000 Ratio 2.15:1. Advantage German.

8. Second Battle of Champagne. [September 1915]

Casualties and losses:
Allies - - 145,000 German - - 97,500 Ratio 1.48:1. Advantage German.

9. Battle of Loos. [September 1915]

Casualties and losses:
British - 50,000 German - - 25,000 Ratio 2:1. Advantage German.

10. Battle of Verdun. [February 1916]

Casualties and losses:
French - - 400,000-542,000 German - - 355,000-434,000 Ratio 1.18:1. Advantage German.

11. Second Battle of the Aisne. [April 1917]

Casualties and losses:
French - - 118,000 German - - 40,000 Ratio 2.95:1. Advantage German.

12. Battle of Arras. [April 1917]

Casualties and losses
British - - 158,000 German - - 120,000–130,000 Ratio 1.264:1. Advantage German.

13. Battle of Messines. [June 1917]

Casualties and losses:
British - - 23,749 German - - 25,000 Ratio .96/1. Advantage English.

14. Third Battle of Ypres. [Passchendaele] [July 1917]

Casualties and losses:
English - - 200,000 - 448,614 German - - 260,400 - 400,000 Ratio 0.98:1. Advantage English.

15. German Spring Offensive. [March 1918]

Allies - - 851,374 German - - 688,341 Ratio 1.23:1. Advantage German.

16. Third Battle of the Aisne. [May 1918]

Casualties and losses:
Allies - - 127,000 German - - 130,000 Ratio 0.97:1. Advantage allies.

"Defense is the stronger form of combat!" - - Clausewitz.

Meaning that defense is easier to do, you can accomplish more with less.

Do these figures, even taken as a whole, categorically suggest, or even are able to allow us to reasonably infer, that the German soldier of the WW1 era was superior to the allied troop? I am sure that based upon figures only, many would answer in the affirmative.

It should be noted that the German, for a period of slightly over three years, at least on the Western Front, was contented with maintaining a defensive posture. [Verdun represents a very marked exception in this regard, to be sure!!]

The German high command, keenly aware that a war of movement had become impossible, consolidated territorial gains, occupying in a very premeditated manner that terrain most conducive for the defensive, high ground and dominating terrain to the extent that such a landscape existed.

AND, constructing fortifications of an impressive nature, to include "mined" dugouts and strong-points [redoubts] capable of shielding troops for a prolonged period against even the most intensive and destructive of allied artillery bombardments. Dugouts and redoubts "mined", possibly designed by mining engineers and dug by professional miners. Formidable structures IN SOME CASES STILL IN PLACE, SO WELL-BUILT AS TO BE UNSCATHED BY THE PASSAGE OF ALMOST A CENTURY!!

Professor Niall once again is correct? It was the German who was "more efficient at killing" and "had the better army"? Your judgement required!



This is coolbert:

Thanks again to Joseph Farah, WorldNetDaily and the G2 Bulletin for this story.

The go-signal having been given by the "Star Chamber", Anwar the Islamic cleric now residing in Yemen [?] is in the cross-hairs of the British.

The U.S. government has given the go-ahead to "off" Anwar, but is not willing to do the job itself? Has contracted the job to the British?

British SAS with the help of MI6 [British Secret Service], is now hunting Anwar, with a vengeance.

"Assassins hunt for al-Awlaki"

"British move follows Obama's authorization for 'hit'"

"LONDON – Britain's Ministry of Defense has transferred its top SAS assassination team from Baghdad to Yemen to try to kill one of the world's most dangerous al-Qaida strategists, Anwar al-Awlaki"

"Attached to the hit squad are MI6 specialists equipped with the latest tracking equipment. Awlaki . . . has been linked to last week's failed attack on Britain's ambassador in Sana"

Anwar has been "linked" to Nidal the Ft. Hood shooter AND the Christmas Day airplane bomber. Due process has been rendered in secret against Anwar and he is dead meat?

"Obama had taken the extraordinary step of authorizing the targeted killing of al-Awlaki, an American citizen."

American authorities - - not wanting to get their hands dirty - - have left the task of finding Anwar and bringing the man to justice [execution] in the hands of the English!! So it seems!!



This is coolbert:

Thanks here to Joseph Farah and WorldNetDaily for this story.

You know this is going to raise some eyebrows in some quarters. Probably already has. There is something sinister going on here? The cash crop of the Taliban, money obtained from the sale of illegal opium, the poppy plant being decimated by a mysterious disease of unknown and peculiar origin?

"Afghanistan opium poppies hit by mysterious disease"

"Farmers in the southern provinces of Kandahar and Helmand, the source of around 90 percent of the world's opium, agreed the harvest will fall this year"

Kandahar and Helmand of course are the STRONGHOLDS OF THE TALIBAN!!

"a mysterious disease withering poppies in some areas."

"While some farmers have reportedly accused the United States and Britain of spraying their crops with chemicals, the UN's Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) said disease was the likely culprit."

A mysterious disease, as described!!

"Tests by the interior ministry were inconclusive . . . 'plagues, pests, blight' had hit Afghanistan's poppy crop in 2002 and 2006."

"'Natural phenomenon cannot be excluded, as happens to wheat, corn, apples.'"

"plagues, pests, blight"

Sure, and perhaps bio-warfare. Genetically modified plant pathogens designed to remove the poppy crop and consequently opium production? The Taliban, minus their cash crop, willing now to negotiate?

I am being paranoid? Perhaps so!


Thursday, May 13, 2010


This is coolbert:

"Shahzad, Nidal Malik Hasan, the American-born renegade cleric Anwar Awlaki now holed up in Yemen and their likes—are a deadly breed of combatants in this new kind of war. Modernity both attracts and unsettles them. America is at once the object of their dreams and the scapegoat onto which they project their deepest malignancies." - - Fouad Ajami.

More today on the nightly television news concerning the purported Times Square bomber Shahzad.

1. It seems that Shahzad received "funding" for his mission through the Islamic under-the-radar money-transfer scheme hawala? This is being investigated. More than likely it did not cost Shahzad that much money to finance his abortive bomb adventure. A few thousands of dollars at most. And the man WAS able to obtain the ingredients for his bomb and NEARLY ESCAPED UNSCATHED.

3. Read too the article by Fouad Ajami. Describes exactly the type of Islamic "lone-wolf" jihadist as represented by Shahzad. Shahzad and Nidal for instance. Seemingly very successful members of American society, and YET, estranged in a manner not even perceived by co-workers, neighbors, etc. Fouad himself is the success story of the Shia immigrant that has made GOOD! When Fouad speaks, we should listen!!

4. Everyone and anyone having even the most tenuous association to Shahzad is now under investigation? Three men arrested today having had contact with Shahzad previous to the failed bombing. BEING HELD FOR IMMIGRATION VIOLATIONS. Interestingly enough, over fifty years ago now, the ace Soviet Spy, Rudolf Abel, a/k/a William Fisher, also was arrested and held for immigration violations, not espionage. If you must have a reason for holding a suspect, go with what you got I guess!!

5. Many pundits have suggested that this attempted terrorist act by Shahzad was very amateurish and poorly done. After all, THE BOMB DID NOT EXPLODE. But if it had, the consensus is that it WOULD HAVE DONE CONSIDERABLE DAMAGE, KILLED AND WOUNDED A GOODLY NUMBER OF FOLKS. Shahzad nonetheless had gotten through "under the radar" most successfully!

We cannot and should not diminish Shahzad and what "almost" WAS!!

"This is a long twilight war, the struggle against radical Islamism. We can't wish it away. No strategy of winning 'hearts and minds,' no great outreach, will bring this struggle to an end." - - Ajami.

Regrettably, hearts and minds and outreach is what the Obama administration has in mind!! An effort of good-will not going to work with the jihadist?