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Sunday, November 17, 2013

The Kennedy Myth

The man, the myth: In public, JFK was the emblem of a shining new age. In private, he was a drug-taking philanderer with Mob links
Sunday 17 November 201

Public opinion polls show that the American people consistently rate Kennedy as one of the greatest leaders in US history, secure in the presidential pantheon alongside Abraham Lincoln and Franklin Roosevelt.
It is probably sobering to the public, on both sides of the Atlantic, to learn that many historians view Kennedy differently. In polls of academics, Kennedy tends to be rated merely as an "above-average" president. He is consistently rated below Harry Truman, for example. This more critical view is due to the fact that since the 1970s, a different narrative of the Kennedy years has emerged. He failed to secure the passage in Congress of his Bills on education, healthcare for the aged and civil rights.
Despite being venerated by many African-Americans, the passage of his civil-rights Bill to end racial segregation in the South required Lyndon Johnson's genius for persuading Congress to do his bidding. In addition, Kennedy authorised the Bay of Pigs invasion, the failed attempt to use Cuban émigrés to trigger an anti-Castro uprising. And he escalated involvement in Vietnam, increasing the number of US military personnel there from around 800 to more than 16,000.
So why is it, then, that so many Americans still admire Kennedy? The answer is in part the tragedy of his death – a young president cut down by a terrible act of violence – and an accompanying need to remember him well. But the continuing reverence for Kennedy is due more fundamentally to the power of his image constructed during his lifetime.

No leader on either side of the Atlantic has since come close to the idolatry generated by Kennedy. Barack Obama inspired people with a similar message of hope for a short while in 2008, but it faded quickly. In Britain, Tony Blair's popularity was broad but not so deep-rooted. In Russia, Vladimir Putin seems a crude pastiche of the leader as hero. But with Kennedy, image creation has proven to be a genuine and long-lasting achievement.
It is the multi-faceted nature of Kennedy's image that accounts for its power. In the two decades before he ran for president he established, with the help of his father Joseph P Kennedy, a number of ideas about himself in the public mind.
The publication in 1940 of his first book, Why England Slept, a reworking of his Harvard undergraduate thesis on the British appeasement of Germany, suggested he was a man of letters, a notion furthered by the release in 1956 of his second book, Profiles in Courage, which won a Pulitzer Prize (despite, as we now know, the book being largely the work of others). His courageous conduct in responding to the ramming of his PT boat by a Japanese destroyer in the Second World War was widely reported, led to military honours, and created the idea of Kennedy as a war hero.
His election while still in his twenties to the House of Representatives and to the Senate at the age of 35 suggested he was an exceptionally precocious politician. The publicity given to his large and interesting family, increased by his marriage in 1953 to Jacqueline Bouvier, built up an image of JFK as a symbol of the family – not just an ordinary politician but a representative of a dynasty. And his youthful good looks made him a sex symbol; this was something that was noticed as early as 1946, when he campaigned for Congress.

The 1960 presidential campaign and his inauguration added two further ideas. The campaign issue created by the fact that no Catholic had ever been elected president was a political problem for Kennedy, but it resulted in him being viewed as a man of faith. The pageantry of his inauguration, as well as Jackie's princess-like appearance, helped create the idea of Kennedy as royal – and of the Kennedys as America's royal family.
As president, the media attention given to his wife, children and his brother Robert as attorney general strengthened the idea of JFK as a familial symbol. Marilyn Monroe singing "Happy Birthday" for him at Madison Square Garden in New York augmented his own erotic credentials – the greatest sex symbol of the age performing for his enjoyment. The famous White House events organised by Jackie Kennedy, such as the concert given by cellist Pablo Casals, enlarged the idea of Kennedy as a man of letters and cultural refinement.
The popular sainthood that Kennedy has posthumously enjoyed, which Lee Friedlander's photographs capture so strikingly, was due, then, not only to the sense of tragic loss felt by Americans after his assassination, but to the potency of his image during his lifetime.
There was one other crucial factor: the role played by Jackie Kennedy. Despite the horror of her husband's murder – most likely perpetrated by Lee Harvey Oswald alone, despite the plethora of conspiracy theories – she was able to focus on how Americans would remember her husband. Worried that scholars would judge his presidency harshly, she sought to use myth to counter history. She decided, therefore, that the funeral would be based on Lincoln's, thereby asserting Kennedy's greatness and martyrdom by associating him with a president who was both great and a martyr.

Most importantly, in an interview with the journalist Theodore White for Life magazine only a week after Dallas, she discussed her late husband's penchant for the musical Camelot. What she implied was that JFK's leadership had been so graceful and inspiring it evoked the story of King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table.
With this article, Jackie had given the Kennedy legend a name: Camelot. And in the battle between the former first lady and later revisionist historians over how JFK was to be remembered, Jackie – unquestionably – won.
Since the 1970s, a series of revelations about Kennedy's personal life have threatened to tarnish his lofty reputation. These have included the fact that he was a philanderer of spectacular proportions, had taken drugs and had alleged dealings with the Mob. These are not trivial matters. Potentially they could have destroyed his presidency.
For example, had his affairs with Judith Campbell (who was also seeing Chicago crime boss Sam Giancana) or Ellen Rometsch (who had been a member of Communist Party organisations in East Germany) come to light, he could have been impeached; today, he certainly would be.

But these personal revelations have failed to diminish the American people's adoration for Kennedy, as public-opinion polls make clear. This is because sex appeal was a major part of his image during his lifetime. So although shocking, the revelations about his Don Juan conduct in private are consistent with the pre-1963 idea of JFK as an erotic symbol.
Kennedy succeeded in constructing an image of himself as a war hero, a man of letters, a sex symbol, a family man of religious conviction, and a political prodigy with a royal sensibility. Kennedy appeared to be all these things; and as his record as a policy-maker and a man is clearly mixed, it is this dazzling image that continues to fascinate us.

Mark White, professor of history at Queen Mary, University of London, is the author of several books on JFK, including 'Kennedy: A Cultural History of an American Icon' (£18.99, Bloomsbury). 'JFK: A Photographic Memoir' by Lee Friedlander is published by Yale University Press, priced £35


  1. “Much of the study of history is a matter of comparison,
    of relating what was happening in one area to what was happening elsewhere, and what had happened in the past.
    To view a period in isolation is to miss whatever message it has to offer.”

    Education of a Wandering Man

    1. A contemporary of Mr Kennedy ...

      “The atom bomb is a paper tiger which the United States reactionaries use to scare people.
      It looks terrible, but in fact it isn't.”

      ― Mao Tse-tung

    2. And another ...

      “Patriotism is when love of your own people comes first; nationalism, when hate for people other than your own comes first.”
      ― Charles de Gaulle

    3. The nemesis, across the Straits of Florida ...

      “I’m not attached to anything.
      I’m attached to what it feels it's my duty, to do my duty.
      I think that I will die with the boots on.”

      Fidel Castro


    4. Do you think when two representatives holding diametrically opposing views get together and shake hands,
      the contradictions between our systems will simply melt away?

      What kind of a daydream is that?


    5. “In 1924 Mao took a Chinese friend, newly arrived from Europe, to see the notorious sign in the Shanghai park,

      'Chinese and Dogs Not Allowed'.”

      ― Paul Johnson, Modern Times


    6. The most striking of all the impressions I have formed since I left London a month ago is of the strength of this African national consciousness.
      In different places it may take different forms but it is happening everywhere.

      The wind of change is blowing through this continent.

      Whether we like it or not, this growth of national consciousness is a political fact. We must all accept it as a fact.

      "Mr Macmillan's appeal to South Africans", The Times, 4 February 1960, p. 15.
      Speech to the South African Parliament, 3 February 1960.

  2. Great hair.

    And, managing to not blunder into a Nuclear War.

    1. Or, being "lucky" enough not to blunder us into a nuclear war.

      That Russian submarine commander had a lot to do with that.

  3. Given that my Mayor, Rob Ford, is such an international celebrity now I didn't want this response to anonoBob to get lost in the chaff so I'll repost it on this thread:

    anon (bob) wrote "He is world class buffoon. Can't imagine he got elected."

    I'm not surprised actually. Hanging out at places like this has given me some insight that makes his election not surprising. You, bob (Fudd, anon, whatever) are a case in point.

    Municipal politics is a strange beast and there are no formal party affiliations for folk running here. Rob Ford was a buffoon city councilor who was no stranger to being on the 1 against the rest of council on various issues. He then ran for Mayor and he was the first out of the gate with a conservative platform - tea party like conservatism. Politics, especially at the municipal level, usually gets boiled down to a phrase or two and name recognition. His main phrase was "Stop the Gravy Train". He campaigned that huge budget savings could be had by stopping giving all that gravy to city employees and contractors. With the resulting savings, he promised, he could build Subways and provide top notch service to everyone. Heck, he could even cut taxes and provide more services - woooohooooo! His opponents saw the popularity of such a message and tacked to the right as well. Good ole Rob Ford won anyway.

    Seems most voters are 'low information' voters and they ignored, explained away, or simply didn't know his history. A buddy of mine, a conservative, thought he would "shake things up" so he voted for him. I tried to argue the guy was an idiot but that tea party like message won out.

    The guy is an idiot and there were "tells" before he was elected mayor but he got in anyway. Once in, the only way to get him out before his term is up is if he is convicted of a federal crime or nailed for corruption. Since day one of his Mayoralty (three years ago) it has been a litany of problems (two court cases all his doing and various stupid shit) culminating in the recent stuff. His response to it all is "I'm sorry but I really like my job and I won't do it again".

    A similar type of example (but very different) would be how YOU, BOB, are taken in by Sarah Palin. She is a doofus and if she were ever anywhere near the oval office she would be a disaster. I can see how she might get elected down there in the good ole USA with guys that think like you. Fortunately the vetting for candidates at the top-level US politics is a little more rigorous than at the municipal level.

    1. Zbigniew BrzezinskiSun Nov 17, 10:52:00 AM EST

      “We have a large public that is very ignorant about public affairs and very susceptible to ...
      simplistic slogans by candidates who appear out of nowhere, have no track record, but mouth appealing slogans”

    2. This guy had a track record but still...

    3. A similar type of example (but very different) would be how YOU, BOB, are taken in by Sarah Palin. She is a doofus and if she were ever anywhere near the oval office she would be a disaster. I can see how she might get elected down there in the good ole USA with guys that think like you. Fortunately the vetting for candidates at the top-level US politics is a little more rigorous than at the municipal level.

      Sorry Ash, But Palin HAS a track record, and a good one at that. From breaking up the GOP old boys network, to bringing a pipeline in UNDER BUDGET? Running a state?

      Your hatred for Palin aside, your criticism of her (and other's) is all about trying to get support from the emotional low information voter.

    4. heh, heh, You and bob would probably still be supporters of Mayor Rob Ford if you were here arguing something like "uhhh, what he does in his private life is private - he still is saving taxpayers a ton of cash AND he will build subways to here and there".

      Palin and Rob Ford are very different and not a perfect comparison but, Palin, would be a clusterfuck if she ever made it to the oval office. I doubt we will see my opinion validated by her getting there though - thankfully.

    5. Ash, why create nonsense?

      I have not said a WORD about your Mayor.

      AS for Palin becoming VP?

      I sure as shit think she'd be a better PRESIDENT than the Poser In chief we have now...

      As for Biden? LOL Don't get me started.

    6. I love haw the Palin haters always state, "hate to see her in the Oval Office"

      She was running for VP.

      Remember that fact?

      VP. Not President.

      Now you can argue that she'd have to take the reins because MCCain was old and near death..

      but at last check McCain is still alive....

      So much for your (and others) nonsense about Palin and the Oval Office.

      Cause now we have President Jackhole and his looney tunes jaw flapping VP Ole Joe...


      Twiddle dee and Twiddle dum...

    7. I actually said "near the oval office". A heartbeat close though. She's a kook.

    8. Bob is only thinking of her oval orifice.

  4. Teresita RedingerSat Nov 16, 01:54:00 PM EST

    What is "Occupation"Sat Nov 16, 02:49:00 PM EST


    1. Yeah, her dream of being the "new sheriff in town" gives one pause.

      Deuce, I trust you do realize that a malicious person with the keys to the kingdom could delete the whole kingdom unless it is backed up somewhere...I think.

    2. I believe "One Person" remarked, within minutes, that that was a "Horrible" decision. :)

    3. We can live with a little inconvenience, T; but some of us are just too damned old to be breaking in a new "sheriff."

    4. Your petulance is tiresome T.

    5. PS see quirks' post last thread.

  5. Zbigniew BrzezinskiSun Nov 17, 10:52:00 AM EST

    “We have a large public that is very ignorant about public affairs and very susceptible to ...
    simplistic slogans by candidates who appear out of nowhere, have no track record, but mouth appealing slogans”

    And yet you supported obama for that very reason...

    1. Zbigniew BrzezinskiSun Nov 17, 11:29:00 AM EST

      I've known Barack Obama his whole life. Knew his mother very well.
      A fine woman.
      I assisted in getting Barack into Columbia University.
      Introduced him to John Brennan, our Station Chief in Pakistan.

      We manipulated Barack's whole life, to get him into positions of authority, culminating in the Oval Office,

      The public did not know him, but I've held him in the palm of my hand

    2. Zbigniew BrzezinskiSun Nov 17, 11:33:00 AM EST

      Could not have done it without Lester's assistance.

      Having Crown Publishing front him that $3 million dollars,
      Allowed us to focus at the task at hand.

      Getting the "First Jewish President of United States" elected.

    3. you are on drugs. really...

      but we all know that...

      not right in the mind...

    4. "getting the "First Jewish President of United States' elected.

      This is another of your base falsehoods. Source the quote if you can.

    5. Zbigniew BrzezinskiSun Nov 17, 12:26:00 PM EST

      "I think when this is all over, people are going to say that Barack Obama is the first Jewish president," he said.

      Mikva, a powerful figure in local and national Democratic politics for decades, was one of Sen. Obama's early admirers, beginning in 1990 when he tried to hire the brilliant student and first black president of the Harvard Law Review for a coveted clerkship.

      Another longtime Chicago supporter, philanthropist, community leader and member of one of Chicago's Jewish royal families, Lester Crown, has known Obama since his first days in Chicago, when Minow called Crown and "said we have in our office a young man who I think is really going places, and I'd like you to meet him." Crown has been a supporter ever since; his son James heads Obama's Illinois financial campaign.

      Crown said that despite Obama's "rock-star, amazing popularity," he has not changed fundamentally in all the years they have known each other. "He's the same person, even though there are tremendous pressures on him. In the last six or eight months, he hasn't gotten a swelled head. If he ever got a little bit of one, his wife would bring him back in two minutes." Michelle Obama, he said, is "absolutely brilliant."

      Crown said he is "bothered" by portions of the Jewish community that express concerns, particularly, about Obama's position on Israel. "From the time I met him, the times we talked about Israel, and we talked about it several times, he has been an ardent backer of Israel's defense position, Israel's security position," he said. "He has been a proponent of the two-state solution, but only on the hopes that you will have a demilitarized peaceful Palestinian entity, which you do not have now."

      Most important, Crown said, is that "knowing him long before he got into politics, I know he is completely supportive, without any question or equivocation, of Israel's security. He is only interested (in a two-state solution) if Israel's security is absolutely assured, and that was his position long before he ever went into politics. His speeches to AIPAC are not new positions, merely the vocalization of what he has always believed," he said.


  6. Brzenski supported Barack Obama because the Obamas were feals of the realm.

    1. Please translate into English.... " feals of the realm"

    2. "One World, Internationalist" with a nod to "National Interests" realm.

    3. Mahdi Darius NazemroayaSun Nov 17, 11:55:00 AM EST

      Moreover, the term “realm” implies the strategic mentality ...

      A realm refers to either the territory ruled by a monarch or the territories that fall under a monarch’s reign,
      but are not physically under their control and have vassals running them.

      Vassal: a person in the past who received protection and land from a lord in return for loyalty and service.

    4. Rufus II,
      You made no quote attributable to Mr.Brzenski. Someone else did. I would like a reference for that quote.

    5. Mick Jagger and Keith RichardsSun Nov 17, 02:12:00 PM EST

      And I went down to the demonstration
      To get my fair share of abuse
      Singing, "We're gonna vent our frustration
      If we don't we're gonna blow a 50-amp fuse"

      You can't always get what you want
      You can't always get what you want
      You can't always get what you want
      But if you try sometimes well you just might find
      You get what you need


  7. Obama confidante says Iran would not use nuke against Israel, but ‘I still think he will pull the trigger’
    Philip Weiss on July 23, 2013 68

    Lester Crown, the Chicago billionaire who has been President Obama’s advocate to the Jewish community and to Israeli leaders, says that he is confident that Obama “will pull the trigger” if Iran develops a nuclear weapon– even though Iran would not use a nuclear weapon against Israel.

    Nukes pose a threat to the Jewish state, Crown says, because Iran would use them to achieve power-parity with Israel and become a “bully in the area,” encouraging Hezbollah to attack Israel every two years, and so wear Israel away by attrition.

    Crown, 88, rarely expresses his views publicly. He doesn’t have to. A leading philanthropist, he has the ear of the president. But speaking on July 2 at the Aspen Ideas Festival, interviewed by Jeffrey Goldberg, surely the most important journalist on Jewish issues and Israel in the country, Crown acknowledged that he often interprets Obama for Israeli leaders.

    Crown described the establishment of Israel as a “miracle”– “To me it isn’t the eighth miracle of the world, it’s the number one miracle”– and Goldberg, who once emigrated to Israel and served in the Israeli military, spoke admiringly of Crown’s “loyalty or service” to Israel: “You’re Lester Crown, no one in Israel can doubt your loyalty or your service to the state of Israel.”

    Here’s their exchange on Iran, beginning at minute 42:


    1. Goldberg: “I know you’ve talked to the president about the Iran issue. [Crown nods]. I know you’ve talked to Israeli leaders about the Iran issue.”

      Crown: “Yes sir.”

      Goldberg: “In fact, I know that Israeli leaders come to you to try to have you explain to them President Obama’s thinking on some occasions. So give us your sense of his thinking on what remains the most pressing foreign policy national security decision in the wider Middle East for the president in the next couple of years. Do you think that if push comes to shove he will actually order a strike against the Iranian nuclear facilities?”

      Crown: “…The answer to your question, as far as I am concerned, which is, I’m probably in the minority in saying to it– I said Yes, I think he would. I think two things have happened. I think the Israelis have really at this point have subcontracted that decision to the United States, which really is surprising. I think the time has passed when the Israeli air force with a surgical strike can do the damage that they think needs to be done.

      “The Iranian nuclear program– both– in all ways is right near the top, whether it be in missiles, whether it be in centrifuges, weaponization, mineralization– it is right at the point where they can have a nuclear weapon. It is so close. Now whether it’s within two months or six months or a year, obviously– I obviously don’t know.”

      Goldberg: “But you feel confident that President Obama has this in hand?”

      Crown: “I think first the eight– I guess– Have a vote in the room!– the American public in my opinion wants nothing to do with the Middle East at this point. They’d love it to go away. It’s been a problem. They just would love to see it go away. And with good reason. The American public after Afghanistan and Iraq doesn’t want any more military action in the Middle East at all. And I think the vote would be unbelievably heavily against it.

      “I still think he will pull the trigger when that particular point comes. The real question is, Will it be in time or will it be a day late?”

      Goldberg: “My final and hardest question is this: What poses a greater threat to Israel, the Iranian nuclear program or Israel’s own policies in the West Bank that as you would argue hurt Israel’s legitimacy and make it difficult to imagine Israel moving forward into the coming decades as it is right now, a Jewish majority democracy? External or the internal?”

      Crown: “You have to put it on a time scale… The Iranian thing has to be solved. It just has to– If they have nuclear weapons, what I think will happen, they won’t use them on Israel. But they will become the bully in the area to the point, to our tremendous detriment, the United States’s tremendous detriment and Israel, and they will just authorize Hezbollah to attack Israel, let’s say, every two years. And by attrition, you get ten years from now, you have no country. So that has to be taken care of…

      “After that is, the internal part of it. They have to solve themselves. People on the West Bank and the situation with the ultra-Orthodox has to– They can’t allow this to go on because it’s corroding the inside and the whole core of the country.”

    2. The exchange begs the question of why the U.S. should take military action when Crown obviously think deterrence works with nuclear powers. And why the U.S. should take military action when the public want no more wars in the Middle East and the threat is Hezbollah, an Islamist military and political force in Lebanon.

      The interview is also interesting for Crown’s expression of dedication to the state of Israel as a haven for Jews because of the legacy of the Holocaust. He says his businessman father bought up aviation parts in the U.S. on behalf of the Israelis in violation of US laws in the 1950s, and that almost all American Jews support Israel.

      Crown also states that the two-state solution is imperative and the Palestinians deserve a state in the West Bank. He deplores the Orthodox Israeli settlers as “absolutely impossible” and says he has urged Israeli leaders not to subsidize settlements, but to pull settlers back into Israel.

      Crown is a billionaire supporter of Barack Obama, a philanthropist involved in the Council on Foreign Relations, the Chicago Global Affairs Council, and the Aspen Institute. In 2008, he reached out to the Jewish community to win them over to Barack Obama on Israel. In 2010, he reportedly applied pressure on Obama to have him stop criticizing Israel on settlements.


    3. I'm sure that "almost all" American Jews of his age, wealth, and social standing "support Israel."

      Of the younger generation's "passion for Israel," I'm not so sure.

    4. Lester Crown, as influential a figure in Barack Obama's life as Zbigniew Brzezinski

    5. Once again, you have blatantly lied. Mr.Brzenski. neither wrote nor said what you attribute to him about Mr. Obama being America's first Jew.

  8. The only hindrance to Iran will come from her neighbors. Mr. Obama never intended to put words to action. At last, his con is clear to the players. Presumably, they will act accordingly.

    As a matter of curiosity, what are F-22's doing in theater?

    1. "As a matter of curiosity, what are F-22's doing in theater? "

      Now THAT, it appears to me, is one of the first truly interesting questions to be asked on this subject, in a while.

    2. Make no mistake, from listening to propaganda; A Squadron of F-22's can take out any air force in the region (if they don't get caught on the ground.)

    3. Acting ...
      ... that is what is done in Kabuki theaters, no?

    4. On 20 Sep '13. one made an appearance at the Iraq and Iranian border. At least two Iranian Phantoms were tailing a US drone in Iraqi airspace. The F-22 warned them off.


    5. "The Emirati Air Force itself could take out the entire Iranian Air Force, I believe, given that it's got ... somewhere around 70 Block 60 F-16 fighters, which are better than the U.S. F-16 fighters," Petraeus said during remarks at a recent conference put on in Bahrain by the International Institute for Strategic Studies.


    6. I think the UAE is buying another 25 or so, of those F16s.

      Can we all say ...

      . . . . . . . . . "Over Kill" . . . . . . . .

    7. UAE Orders More F-16E/F Fighters | Aviation International News
      www.ainonline.com › AIN Defense Perspective › April 26, 2013‎
      Apr 26, 2013 - The United Arab Emirates Air Force has decided to buy another 25 Lockheed Martin F-16 Block 60 fighters. The deal is worth $4- to $5 billion, ...

    8. Rufus II Sun Nov 17, 12:33:00 PM EST
      Make no mistake, from listening to propaganda; A Squadron of F-22's can take out any air force in the region (if they don't get caught on the ground.)

      The F-22 is the first truly strategic aircraft, in my opinion. Its presence must give the players pause.

    9. It just kills F-15's at a 10 - 1 ratio

      (then it has to go back and rearm.)


    10. So to, allen, would have any F16, F18, F14 or F15.

      I wouldn't doubt that a pair of F5s could chase off the Phantoms.

    11. True, Ed, but there has to be something disconcerting to look back and see a locked-and-loaded F-22 on your six when there has been Zero radar warning.

    12. Defense Industry Daily staffSun Nov 17, 12:46:00 PM EST

      The UAE’s F-16 Block 60 Desert Falcon Fleet
      by Defense Industry Daily staff

      Oct 15/13: Weapons. The US DSCA announces the UAE’s formal export request for a variety of new precision strike weapons to equip its F-16E/F Block 60 fighters. The orders could be worth up to $4 billion, and include…

      300 AGM-84H SLAM-ER cruise missiles. This Harpoon variant adds IIR terminal guidance to GPS navigation, and extended-range wings that let it hit land and sea

    13. Panama Ed,

      You miss the point. The US has sequestered a squadron of F-22's in theater. This aircraft is a killing machine and extremely expensive to build and maintain. What this means is that someone expects some heavy lifting of such importance that F-22's would be put at risk.

    14. And, If I remember correctly, those F-22's are based in the UAE. That's awfully close to the "action" for a stand-off weapon of its value.

    15. I do not miss the point you are making, allen.
      But you ar missing mine.
      As you admit the F22 sends a message, by its very presence.

      Its entrance onto the the stage is significant, but does not change the balance of power in the Region, not one iota.
      The Iranian Air Force cannot stand against the UAE.
      Let alone the USAF, then factor in the coordination of combat power with the UAE and Saudi air forces.

      The F22 is not there to "Change" the equation, it is there to send the message that you received.

      The pilots of those F22s need their face time on the frontlines, as much or more as any other combat pilot in the USAF.
      We cannot and should not keep those F22s Stateside.

      What a waste of psychological warfare assets that would be.

    16. That's kind of the way I see it, Ed.

      There is one other thing. I couldn't see sending in the B-2's without an F-22 escort.

    17. They are there to play their role in the Kabuki theater.

      Even if the USAF were to down a F4.
      It would not be of "Strategic" significance or difference whether it was done by a F16 or an F22.

    18. Yawn... armchair pilots. always one or two wars behind the times.

      The game changer?

      The Russians and the s-300's

      11 SEPTEMBER 2013 - 10H28
      Russia 'to renew offer to supply S-300s to Iran'

      AFP - Russian President Vladimir Putin will offer to supply Iran S-300 air defence missile systems as well as build a second reactor at the Bushehr nuclear plant, the Kommersant business daily reported Wednesday.

      Putin will renew an old offer to supply Iran with five of the sophisticated ground-to-air missile systems at a meeting with Iranian President Hassan Rowhani on Friday, Kommersant said, quoting a souce close to the Kremlin.

      Putin is set to meet Rowhani at a summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation held in Kyrgyzstan on Friday.

      Russia in 2007 signed a contract to deliver five of the advanced ground-to-air weapons -- which can take out aircraft or guided missiles -- to Iran at a cost of $800 million.

      Yeah old Rat/ed and Rufus are still thinking checkers and the iranians chess and the Israelis are playing GO....

    19. Then the F22's would not be based where the Iranians could monitor the comings and goings, with easy ground surveillance of the air bases in the UAE or Saudi Arabia.

      Be assured that the take offs and landings, in the UAE, are monitored by Iranian field operatives.

      If the entire contingent went wheels up, at once ... they will know in Tehran.
      Or the Air Force thinks that even if the Iranians knew we coming ...
      It wouldn't make a difference.

    20. Explain then, when will these masters at manipulative "Chess" playing become "Suiciders", if you will pleae.

      When ever does a pawn over power the board?

    21. 1) Good chess strategy suggests you make your first move with the pawn in front of either your King or Queen

      2) Good chess strategy suggests you make good developing moves, and generally develop your Knights before your Bishops

      3) Good chess strategy suggests you try not to move the same piece twice in the opening
      Don't move the same piece around aimlessly; the best chess opening strategy is to find a good developing square for it. After you've developed a piece, don't move it again unless you absolutely have to; concentrate on developing another piece.

      4) Good chess strategy suggests that your King's safety is crucial; castle early if you can
      A big exception to the principle of centralizing your pieces concerns your King.
      In the opening and middlegame, the center is the worst place for your King.
      Castling is a great way to safeguard your King from sudden chess tactics and even checkmate - it gets the King away from the center and develops one of your Rooks at the same time.
      Top level chess strategy!

      5) Good chess strategy suggests you don't advance more than one or two pawns in the chess opening, and definitely not a pawns in front of your castled King
      You need to advance a couple of pawns so that your pieces can develop, but be aware that advancing lots of pawns will weaken your defenses.

      So the best chess opening strategy is to move one or two pawns in the opening (see principle #1), but not more. (There are exceptions to this; you'll learn them later.)

      6) Good chess strategy suggests you make when you develop your pieces, try to make moves which threaten something

      7) Good chess strategy suggests you don't bring your Queen out early


    22. A squadron of F-22's would take out an entire air force and be home in time for dinner. That makes it strategic.


    23. allen tells us we have just advanced our bishop, the F22, towards the center ...

      quot says we do not know how to play ....

    24. So to, allen, could the UAE Air Force, composed of F16s.

      There is no strategic difference, there is a tactical advantage with the F22.
      The Iranians will lose to the F16, just as quickly.

      Just as the Iraqi Air Force went down, mostly never got off the ground.
      When they did, the Iraqi pilots made a dash for Iranian airspace.

      The F22 are in Theater because they are good actors, the best we got.
      John Wayne, Earl Flynn and Jimmie Stewart all rolled into one.

      But it is still just Kabuki Theater, only now it is on the Big Screen.

    25. To compare the squadron of F-22's to some S-300's is comparable to not even knowing where the chess match is to be held.

    26. There are pieces in play all over the board: Kurdistan,Turkey, Iraq, Lebanon, Syria. As for the F-22, it plays spherical chess.

      Looking at Hezbollah for example, It is being weakened in southern Lebanon with each soldier lost and each bullet fired. The Syrian army is fragmented, attempting to operate on at least three main fronts. The more fragmented it becomes, the more reliant it becomes on Hezbollah, and the weaker Hezbollah becomes in Lebanon the greater the probability of Christian militias taking the field against it. Etc.

    27. Rufus I ISun Nov 17, 02:11:00 PM EST
      To compare the squadron of F-22's to some S-300's is comparable to not even knowing where the chess match is to be held

      I have no idea what you are talking about.

    28. The Yinon Plan unfolds, just a described yesterday, the plan first seeing the "light of day", back in 1982.
      Some times it takes a while ...

      For a Plan to Come Together.

    29. Mahdi Darius NazemroayaSun Nov 17, 02:56:00 PM EST

      The Middle East and North Africa have been turned into an arc of instability all the way from Iraq and the Persian Gulf to Libya and Tunisia.
      Chaos and violence seem to be in almost every corner of the Arab World and the Middle East.
      The bloodletting does not seem to stop.

      One country in the region, however, is gleaming with satisfaction.
      Tel Aviv has been given a free hand by the instability that it has helped author with Washington in the region.
      The chaos around it has allowed Israel to move ahead with its annexation of more and more Palestinian land in the West Bank while it pretends to be talking peace with the Palestinian Authority of the irrelevant Mahmoud Abbas.

      All it needs now is for the US to lead a war against Iran and its allies.

      The current upheavals actually have a resounding resemblance to the objectives of the Yinon Plan of 1982, named after its author Oded Yinon from the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs, which calls for the fracturing of North Africa and the Middle East.

      The Israeli document may have been written in 1982, but it represents the strategic goals and ideas of Israel.
      «Breaking Egypt down territorially into distinct geographical regions is the political aim of Israel», according to it.

      It is a continuation of the colonial project of the British in the region and has been transmitted to American foreign policy,
      which explains the views of the neocons and Ralph Peters about the «New Middle East» that they seek.

      The «Clean Break» documented authored by Richard Perle for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is also based on the Yinon Plan and informs the current position of the Obama Administration and Netanyahu’s government on Syria.

    30. It just kills F-15's at a 10 - 1 ratio

      (then it has to go back and rearm.)

      Well, nine of them do, anyway.

  9. Replies
    1. In the season's next-to-the-last game, at home against Boston, Maris failed to hit the ball out of the infield. The next afternoon, Sunday, Oct. 1, the house that Ruth built was two-thirds empty. Only 23,154 fans showed up to see if Maris could set a new home run record* for a season.

      In his second at-bat in the fourth against rookie right-hander Tracy Stallard, Maris looked for a pitch to drive. Phil Pepe reported the call by broadcaster Phil Rizzuto on WCBS radio: "Here's the windup . . . fastball . . . HIT DEEP TO RIGHT . . . THIS COULD BE IT . . . HOLY COW! HE DID IT . . . 61 HOME RUNS."

  10. Netanyahu offers job to UN interpreter who assailed UN hypocrisy on Israel in open microphone

  11. "6There was one other crucial factor: the role played by Jackie Kennedy. Despite the horror of her husband's murder – most likely perpetrated by Lee Harvey Oswald alone, despite the plethora of conspiracy theories – she was able to focus on how Americans would remember her husband. Worried that scholars would judge his presidency harshly, she sought to use myth to counter history. She decided, therefore, that the funeral would be based on Lincoln's, thereby asserting Kennedy's greatness and martyrdom by associating him with a president who was both great and a martyr."

    Heh :)

    Somebody didn't proof read this text.


    1. “It is wrong and immoral to seek to escape the consequences of one's acts.”

    2. rat can't escape his karma, we all agree.

      And you, Mahatma Gandhi/rat, thought the Jews should just go peacefully to the ovens.

      ((((The vehicle for this reflection was Gandhi’s grandson, Arun, a mild-mannered 73-year-old writer and peace activist, who until recently ran the MK Gandhi Institute of Peace and Non-Violence at the University of Rochester, New York state. Early in January he wrote on On Faith, a Washington Post/Newsweek blog: “[The Holocaust] is a very good example of how a community can overplay a historic experience to the point that it begins to repulse friends… It seems to me the Jews today not only want the Germans to feel guilty, but the whole world must regret what happened… When an individual or a nation refuses to forgive and move on, the regret turns into anger.” Gandhi blamed “Israel and the Jews” for being the biggest players in creating “a culture of violence.”))))


      desert rat is a sick sick man.

      He needs help.

      He needs serious counseling.

      And soon.

    3. On The Holocaust

      “Hitler killed five million Jews. It is the greatest crime of our time. But the Jews should have offered themselves to the butcher’s knife. They should have thrown themselves into the sea from cliffs.” ~ George Orwell’s “Reflections on Gandhi,” Partisan Review, Jan. 1949

      As to whether the Jews should have committed “collective sucide” by offering themselves to Hitler: “Yes, that would have been heroism.” ~ George Orwell’s “Reflections on Gandhi,” Partisan Review, Jan. 1949


      Gandhi's reputation is way overblown.

      But one can see why our sick rat loves the guy.

      What a perverse person is the rat nicknamed Whacky by Quirk.

    4. Last week, about $1.3 Billion in stolen Jewish art was announced. What was not announced initially was that the art had been held for two years without a word being said. Only when Jews began to raise a stink did the German government make even a token effort to investigate title.

      Several years ago, "Top Secret" NAZI documents were ordered unsealed by a German court. Among other surprises discovered was that the German government knew of Eichmann's whereabouts in 1953. Yes, that's right 1953!!!!! It took another seven years of ferreting to catch Eichmann.

      For years, the Israel government and individual Jews have been fighting in Swiss courts in an effort to retrieve wealth deposited there by fleeing Jews. The Swiss have been unhelpful.

      When people wonder why Jews get a little steamed read the above a couple more times with empathy. And by the way, 6 million Jews were murdered NOT 5 million. Yes, that's six fingers up times 1,000.000.

    5. alllen, it was just a week ago that you were singing praises for Germany.

      Others, here at .The Libertarian did not share your enthusiasm for the "German Way", but you persisted in singing their praises.
      The Germans knew how to do business, how to get things done.

      They surely do, don't they.

    6. Panama Ed,

      As an intelligent man, I am capable of dealing with multiple unrelated issues. Moreover, I know the world is shades of gray, not black or white.

      I simply reported on the German economy. You added all sorts of frills. I just did not bother to respond to a fool.

    7. Panama Ed uses any word to tell an entire story.

      A fiction created in a serial liar's mind...

      That's how Ed rolls.. Or is it Rat... Or anyone of a dozen names he uses to play his games...

    8. Fleeing Jews want their art back but fleeing Palestinians don't get their homes back?

    9. Sorry, it was their wealth they want back. I guess having fled doesn't mitigate their claims but it does the Palestinians?

  12. All this talk about aero planes is meaningless cause O'muzzie isn't going to use them, unless perhaps against Israel.

  13. Now, here is a question for you, all.

    When a character in the story is or was an actual person,
    is every word of dialog actually have to be attributable to the person being portrayed?

    I mean ...
    John F. Kennedy and the movies:
    From Cliff Robertson to William Devane, from Martin Sheen to Patrick Dempsey, capturing JFK no easy role

    ... especially difficult if every line of dialog has to be a direct quote made by JFK.

    Who would expect it?

    When William F Buckley Jr has LBJ in the Oval Office... speaking to Jack Valenti;
    What reader in their right mind expects those lines to be quotes?

    Really ... who would be so willfully obtuse.?

    1. You do that kind of shit daily.

      You lie and misrepresent and put up quotes that are not real quotes.

      You are a hypocrite and liar.

      You are a sick sick man.

    2. “In such a society as ours the only possible chance for change, for mobility, for political, economic, and moral flow lies in the tactics of guerrilla warfare, in the use of fictions, of language.”

    3. Re: obtuse

      The better question is who has been proven a serial liar? I engage you not to learn about you, but about a mass of people like you.

    4. As I have said about Rat/Ed/ who knows what "nom de guerre" uses, he lies, distorts and is not truthful.

      He misleads and changes definitions in mid-stream to "win" arguments at any cost.

      There is no point in trying to have a serious discussion with him as he is incapable of telling the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.

      He is a serial liar.


    5. “The truth may be out there, but the lies are inside your head.”

    6. If the rat speaketh? the rat lie - ith...

  14. November 17, 2013
    Is Saudi Arabia working with Israel on an Iran strike?
    Thomas Lifson

    That is the contention of the UK Sunday Times, as noted by the Times of Israel:

    According to the Sunday Times, Riyadh has agreed to let Israel use its airspace in a military strike on Iran and cooperate over the use of rescue helicopters, tanker planes and drones.

    "The Saudis are furious and are willing to give Israel all the help it needs," an unnamed diplomatic source told the paper.

    While Israel and Saudi Arabia face a common mortal enemy in Iran, most observers of the Kingdom believe that any arrangement that does not have plausible deniability would mean the end of the Royal Family's rule. As Rick Moran pithily put it, "If it was ever confirmed the royal family would be dead meat." Demonization of Israel has been a staple of life in the Arab world, nowhere more so than Saudi, custodians of the holy cities of Mecca and Medina. After all, next in line in the "holy city" rankings is Jerusalem, or, as the Arabs call it, Al Quds.

    But by Orthodox Sunni lights (and Saudi Arabia is the most Orthodox Sunni country on earth), the Shiites of Iran are dangerous heretics who split the ummah at the time of Mohammed's grandson's birth. Mor importantly, the mullahs of Iran want to seize not just Mecca and Medina but also the oil producing eastern provinces of Saudi Arabia, which most inconveniently have a large Shia population ruled by Sunnis in Riyadh.

    Of Iran gets the A bomb, I believe they are more likely to attack Riyadh than Tel Aviv. When it comes to score settling, fights within a family are usually more vicious than fights outside. Look at the troubles they had in Northern Ireland, for instance. Or ask any cop about domestic disturbance calls.

    I am no expert on the internal security of the Saudi regime, but suspect that if they think they can get away with covertly aiding an Israeli strike, they will do so. Perhaps not just overflight permission, but actual use of a remote airbase or two near the Iranian border, to allow multiple sorties buy Israeli craft. I am not sure how well they could make stick a denial of helping out the hated Jews, but let's face it: The Israelis are no threat to the regime, and the mullahs would take great delight in hanging the entire Saudi Royal Family.

    Rick Moran also points out that Saudi Arabia allowed Israeli overflights during the attack ont he Osirak nuclear facility in Iraq, and then hastily denoucned the attack as an outrage. That could be the model for an attack on Iran

    1. NFL time here....out

    2. Only touchdowns happening in Illinois are tornado ones.

  15. This comment has been removed by the author.

  16. Afghan villagers find the bodies of 6 beheaded contractors in restive southern province

    By Associated Press, Updated: Sunday, November 17, 12:51 PM
    KABUL, Afghanistan — Afghan villagers discovered the beheaded bodies of six government contractors Sunday in the country’s restive south, the apparent victims of insurgents who regularly target state projects, officials said.

    Meanwhile, the death toll from a suicide car bombing at the site of a key national council in the capital, Kabul, rose to 12, officials said, as NATO said an international service member was killed by a roadside bomb.

  17. Replies
    1. New York Senator Kirstin Gillibrand admits to knowing President was lying about Obamacare. Amazing, another conspiracy! Who could have ever guessed?

    2. It's a shocker!!!

      Nancy lied and people died...

    3. Or Ms Gillibrand is lying now, about the lies of omission she did not tell then.

      In either case she'll answer to the people of New York, if they care enough to ask the question

      Who has died, what are their names?
      When and where did it happen?

    4. Dear Ed,

      Do your own research, or make it up as you do on an hourly basis.

      After all no fact presented you will not lie, misrepresent or distort to feed your sick and evil mind.

      GO play with yourself

    5. So, no one has died.
      Good to know.
      Thanks for keepin' it real!

    6. You can say what ever you wish. Your words hold no truth.

      You have not done any research on the topic or you would have found other information. IF you have done the research that proves my point and you won't show it?

      You are a liar.


    7. Raddatz: Do you feel misled by Obama?

      Gillibrand: He should have been more specific…

      Raddatz: So were you misled?

      Gillibrand: No, we all knew. The whole point of the plan is to cover
      things people need.

    8. My, that was convincing. Somewhere, sometime, someone is going to have a field day when the stooges are under oath. And that's entertainment.

    9. Never cede the initiative, quot.

      If you make a claim, do not leave it to the antagonist to prove it for you.
      If you make an invalid claim, one that cannot be authenticated.
      Either do not make the claim, in the first place ...
      or ....
      Leave it lay, to respond at all is just inviting a response to your nonperformance, not what a tactician like Mr Sharon would do.

      Never cede the initiative.

  18. Mahdi Darius NazemroayaSun Nov 17, 03:03:00 PM EST

    Undemocratic Arabia

    The Arabian Peninsula is a powder keg that is waiting to explode.
    All the regimes are fragile and cannot survive without US and foreign patronage.
    Their main concerns are survival, but the lack of freedom and oppression is like a toxic buildup waiting to ignite an epic fire that will burn all Arabia.

    «The entire Arabian Peninsula is a natural candidate for dissolution due to internal and external pressures,
    and the matter is inevitable especially in Saudi Arabia», according to Israel’s Yinon Plan.

    Generally, the littoral states of the Persian Gulf, aside from the Sultanate of Oman, have actively been instigating Shia-Sunni divisions
    internally and regionally as part of their attempt to gain some legitimacy for the dictatorships of their ruling families and feudal hierarchies.

    This is part of their survival strategies, but is detrimental to them.

    The Saudi military has intervened in both Bahrain and Yemen and claimed to be fighting an Iranian regional conspiracy and Shiite Muslim treachery.
    Aside from discrimination, the Shiite Muslims of the Arabian Peninsula have been accused of being tied to Iran,
    and this has been used to justify their oppression.
    In the words of the Saudi Ayatollah Nimr Baqr al-Nimr, however, they have no ties with Iran or any other state
    nor do they have any loyalties any of them.

    The world has watched as the unarmed people of Bahrain have faced the brutality of the Khalifa regime and their army
    of predominately foreign security enlistees from places like Jordan, Yemen, and Pakistan. Bahranis, specifically
    the indigenous Baharna, are being further marginalized by the Khalifa’s population transfer and settlement programs
    that are naturalizing foreigners or importing them to displace the Baharna and other Bahraini communities.

    The majority of Bahrainis are being systematically discriminated against and ghettoized,
    because they are barred from the prominent jobs or government positions that are instead being given to foreigners.

    In addition to the Khalifa reign of terror and the secret police, the Khalifa’s are deliberately stoking Shia-Sunni tensions
    as a means of keeping Bahrainis divided, keeping themselves in power, and trying legitimizing themselves.

    Bahrain is basically under foreign occupation.

    In Saudi Arabia, the throwback kingdom of misogyny and horrors, there has been agitation by the people against the Saud regime.
    Despite the brutal crackdowns, there have been consistent protests since 2011 across Saudi Arabia demanding
    equality, basic freedoms, and habeas corpus.

    Speculation and rumours about palace coups in Saudi Arabia have also been rife too.
    The latest of which is that Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah had Prince Khalid bin Sultan put under house arrest
    shortly after he was dismissed from his post as Saudi deputy defence minister.

    In reality, the Arab petro-sheikhdoms are fragile constructs that have wobbly foundations.
    Their princes are united by their insecurities, but have a list of animosities against one another that could breakout under the proper circumstances.
    The sedition and terrorism that petro-sheikhdoms are spreading across the region will eventually blow back in their faces.

    The United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia already fear the rise of the Muslim Brotherhood in the Persian Gulf.

  19. Allen, I was referring to this:

    What is "Occupation"Sun Nov 17, 01:43:00 PM EST

    Yawn... armchair pilots. always one or two wars behind the times.

    The game changer?

    The Russians and the s-300's

    1. Rufus, the Russians are making a strategic bid to relocate to the med. and take the old role they used to have before they were thrown out of Egypt.

      Obama has given them the power vacuum to fill.

      Just handed it to them.

      Iran, Syria are JUST 2 of the places the Russians are planting roots.

      The s-300's are a game changer..

      Not to mention:

      Russia has sold Syria highly advanced rocket launchers, anti-aircraft missiles and anti-ship missiles. In fact, the P-800 Yakhont anti-ship missiles that Russia has equipped Syria with are the most advanced anti-ship missiles that Russia has. When the United States strikes Syria, they might be quite surprised at how hard Syria can hit back. The Syrian military is the most formidable adversary that the U.S. military has tangled with in the Middle East by far. From Syria, P-800 Yakhont anti-ship missiles can cover much of the eastern Mediterranean and can even reach air bases in Cyprus. If the U.S. Navy is not very careful to stay out of range, we could easily see footage of destroyed U.S. naval vessels sinking into the Mediterranean Sea on the evening news.

      The S-300 missile system is designed to shoot down aircraft and missiles at a range of 5-to-150 kilometers. That gives it the ability to destroy not only attackers in Syrian airspace but also any attackers inside Israel.

      It can track and strike multiple targets simultaneously at altitudes ranging from 10 meters to 27,000 meters.

      "The S-300 is Russia's top-of-the-range air-defense system," says Robert Hewson, the London-based editor of "IHS Jane's Air-Launched Weapons." "It is a surface-to-air missile system that's capable of shooting down any modern combat aircraft or missiles, including cruise missiles. In a way, it is the Russian equivalent to the U.S. Patriot system. And what it does for Syria is it adds a whole new level of capability on top of the existing Syrian air defenses. Syria already has a lot of Russian [surface-to-air] missiles, but the S-300 would be the most advanced."

      How much would a deployed S-300 system complicate a decision by the international community to create no-fly zones in Syria?

      The deployment of the S-300 system would greatly complicate any such measures in Syria.

      It would similarly complicate Israel’s policy of striking targets in Syria to prevent transfers of sophisticated weapons from Damascus to the Lebanese Hizballah, Israel’s sworn enemy.

    2. The S-400, the next generation of air-defense systems, has the potential to create serious problems for fighter aces around the world.

      "The 400 is an evolution of the 300. It has many features specifically designed to overcome countermeasures and stealth, such as a larger, more powerful radar that is more resistant to jamming. It also actually has a set of three missiles of varying range that provide overlapping layers of defense," Ivan Oelrich, an independent defense analyst and adjunct professor at the Elliot School of International Affairs at George Washington University, told The Diplomat.

      "The S-400, or Triumph, consists of a radar and several missiles. The main radar tracks targets, calculates an intercept course, and sends guidance signals to the missiles, directing them toward the target. When the missiles get close enough, they switch over to an independent, on-board guidance system for the final attack."

      Oelrich explained the system is not combat tested nor has it been sold outside of Russia, so information on the system is limited.

      Nothing stops the Russians from deploying these on their new bases in alexandria, syria or iran.

    3. Colonel Q, he was a Potentate of a Mediterranean Sultanate.
      He started negotiating for a Russian naval presence in Libya
      Look where that got 'em.

      Gadafy offers Russia a naval base in Libya
      Tom Parfitt in Moscow
      The Guardian, Friday 31 October 2008


      Russia plans navy bases in Libya, Syria, Yemen:
      Posted Fri 16 Jan 2009, 10:43pm AEDT

      Russia has decided to establish naval bases in Libya, Syria and Yemen within a few years, a Russian military official was quoted as saying on by Itar-Tass news agency.


      Now, the current "Zone of Disruption" ... wow ... it centers on those three mentioned ports of call.

      Fancy that

    4. Russian arms are so lousy, the only takers are the bottom of the barrel of the muzzie monkeys.

    5. Plans that have been tweaked by decades of development, initiated as part of the "Great Game".

      The same "Great Game" described in ...

      The origin and development of imperialist contention in Iran; 1884-1921: part II
      A case study in under development and dependency

      Younes Parsa Benab


    6. The S 300's are so good that the Israelis just turn them off for a couple of hours when they took out that Syrian Nuke facility.

    7. Will Success Spoil Rock Hunter?

    8. Mahdi Darius NazemroayaSun Nov 17, 03:47:00 PM EST

      In Yemen, the republican exception to the royalties of Arabia,
      there is a risk that the country could revert back to the two parts that united in 1990,
      respectively North Yemen or the Yemen Arab Republic and South Yemen
      or the People’s Democratic Republic of Yemen and North.

      A Houthi rebellion in the north against the embattled Yemeni government,
      which has been accused of discriminating against the Zaidi Shiite Muslims by the Houthi,
      and a strong secessionist movement in the southern areas have brought the state near the point of collapse
      and allowed Yemen to become a playground for the US and Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), specifically Saudi Arabia.

      Yemen has turned into the Obama Administration’s drone firing range.

    9. Rufus I ISun Nov 17, 03:13:00 PM EST
      Allen, I was referring to this:


      While not intentionally knocking the Russians, their equipment has never met the advertising where it mattered, the battlefield. For a day or two, they looked pretty impressive in the 1973 War, but that had as much to do with the mistakes of Dayan and Meir as anything else.

      "One cannot and must not try to erase the past merely because it does not fit the present."
      ___Golda Meir

    10. Rufus IISun Nov 17, 03:38:00 PM EST
      The S 300's are so good that the Israelis just turn them off for a couple of hours when they took out that Syrian Nuke facility.

      No rufus, there were no s300 there at that time..

    11. You're right; that was the older variant. I still suspect they would "turn off" the new ones just as easily.

    12. Although I share your POV on the ability of the Israelis, the s-450's being manned by the Russians I am not so sure of...

    13. allen
      While not intentionally knocking the Russians, their equipment has never met the advertising where it mattered, the battlefield.

      Allen you bring up an very good point grossly overlooked by the anti-Israel crowd here and elsewhere.

      The Israelis, using the America supplied arms, which the Israelis UPGRADED, IMPROVED and Innovated helped show the world the worthlessness of going up against the "west" with, at the time, Soviet weapons systems. The Israelis have down this dog and pony show NUMEROUS times. From the battles in the Sinai, to 83 IDF air war over lebanon with the Syria MIGS the Israelis have been the BEST salesmen for USA arms sales to many a buyer...

      Also the innovations and improvements of American weapons systems, planes etc has given America countless $$$ of improvements, battlefield tested and innovated by the Israelis for the benefit of America (and for the benefit of the IDF)

      Another UNIQUE payback that Israel gives the USA for the military aid that America gives to Israel. Unlike ANY other nation that receives economic or military aid from the USA, ONLY Israel actually gives America an great return on it's investment.

    14. Except for that little episode on the Golan Heights when the non-night visioned American-made Israeli tanks ran up against the Night-visioned Russian Tank Corps. :)

      In that case it was the skill of the Israeli Officer Corps, and Tank Commanders that saved the day (and, Israel's collective ass.)

    15. there are many examples of the IDF having close calls that were won by grit, luck and balls.... Ariel Sharon's movement of the tanks to the southern sinai AGAINST all orders and common sense saved Israel's collective ass against a ruthless, better armed, Soviet backed enemy, in this case Nasser...

    16. Rufus II Sun Nov 17, 05:01:00 PM EST
      Except for that little episode on the Golan Heights

      That is a perfect example of the errors of the government of Israel in that war. It was a close run thing and Israel nearly lost. To their credit, the Syrians fought with grim determination. Had the Israeli line collapsed, the Syrians could have advanced with little in the way of opposition.

  20. Prior to Obamacare (2010) something like 40,000 Americans received cancellation notices, weekly.

    1. Right at 2 million a year, then.

      That was the 'status que'?

    2. Yeah, the "Individual" Health Market (in which I did not participate) was the dirtiest game I've ever had the mispleasure to be around.

    3. So the ACA "minimum" coverage cancellations would amount to to what, about 1.5 to 2 million policies?

    4. Yeah, probly, by the time it's all said and done, pretty much samey-same.

    5. They would "write" that business with the goal of shedding most of the policy-holders (through premium increases, etc) within a certain fairly small number of years (before they got "old and sick.")

    6. All the "Pros" in that business scoffed at the idea of renewals.

      They knew the company would shed that business within a couple of years, if the customer didn't shed the company first.

    7. Obamacare rejects the individual plans of sixty year old women because they don't include maternity benefits. And they LIKED those plans.

    8. Even at the risk of sounding like a socialist, I believe that the US must have some sort of accessible health care for all its citizens. Obama Care is just not the means to that end for me. Why a matter of basic human decency should devolve into class warfare is a shame because it's purposeful. Granted, there must be some sort of means testing. And hard choices will have to be made as to how it will be funded. We might be better off following a pygmy observation: How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time.

    9. You may have noticed, Teresita, that those plans are Priced by Age. Trust me, there is no price built into the premium of a 60 yr old woman for "maternity risk."

      btw, once you understand this, you recognize the fallacy of the "must have the young and healthiers in the market" argument.

    10. btw, everyone keeps overlooking the fact that the penalty is NOT $95.00, but, $95.00 OR 1% of Gross Income.

      Big Dif.

    11. What we are witnessing is all the assholes in congress, and on tv, blathering on about something of which they know absolutely zilch point ditto.

    12. A 65 yr. old Billionaire residing in Texas has full access to Healthcare through Medicare, but the gal making $3,600.00 yr makes too much to be eligible for Medicaid.

      That would take a whole hell of a lot of "pygmy bites," I'm afraid.

    13. Rufus is gasping and grasping an his hallucination goes down the drain.

    14. We will be better off being concerned about the 15% or so that really have trouble getting insurance than f'ing up the 85% of the others.

    15. And doubling the number of doctors. Bring some competition into the game.

    16. And getting the government the hell out of the consulting room.

    17. Boy, you fellas should have been sayin' that suff, what, three years ago, now.

      But then, all that was heard was ....

      and then another round of NO!

      But there were no enough votes to stop it, and the NO! crowd refused to participate.
      A portion of the blame for the malfunction, now, is accounted to their failure to perform, then.

      It is a 'governmental' issue, not a partisan one.

      Voting NO! does not alleviate a legislator from responsibility for the legislation, especially if they refused to participate in its formulation.
      Starving the final product of their input, wisdom and insight.

      If only three years ago those legislators knew what you all have come to realize, of late.

  21. Allan Block, Whose Sandal Shop Was Folk Music Hub, Dies at 90

    I went down to the sacred store
    Where I’d heard the music years before
    But the man there said the music wouldn’t play

  22. Mahdi Darius NazemroayaSun Nov 17, 03:58:00 PM EST

    The Yinon Plan
    Sunday, August 25, 2013 13:32
    By Mahdi Darius Nazemroaya

    Bloodletting in the Mashreq: Mesopotamia and the Levant
    Instability and terrorism has gripped Iraq.

    The groups that can be referred to as Al-Qaeda in Iraq are set on turning Iraq into a failed state
    by working to implement a wave of terror and violence in Baghdad and across Iraq
    as a means of making the Iraqi government collapse.

    These terrorist attacks are actually tied to the regime change agendas of
    the US, UK, Israel, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and Turkey in Syria.

    The terrorist groups in Iraq have also crossed the border into Syria to join the insurgency there and form what they call the «Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant». They run a twin strategy in Iraq and Syria.

    Iraq has devolved into three sections.
    The Kurdistan Regional Government in Iraq is virtually independent
    while countries like Saudi Arabia and Turkey are taking advantage of the feeling of disenfranchisement among the Sunni Arabs.

    Outside powers are doing nothing short of stoking division among Shias and Sunnis and between Arabs and Kurds in Iraq, just as they are pushing for communal division in Syria.

    This is what Oden Yinon had to declare about Iraq:
    «Every kind of inter-Arab confrontation will assist us in the short run and will shorten the way to the more important aim of breaking up Iraq into denominations as in Syria and in Lebanon. In Iraq, a division into provinces along ethnic/religious lines as in Syria during Ottoman times is possible. So, three (or more) states will exist around the three major cities: Basra, Baghdad and Mosul, and Shiite areas in the south will separate from the Sunni and Kurdish north».

    Syria is bloodletting even more than Iraq.

    Israeli and American analysts, experts, and policymakers keep insisting that the country will fall apart.
    The foreign-sponsored anti-government forces are killing civilians on the basis of their community affiliations as a means of spreading sedition and hate.

    Harking back to Israel’s Yinon Plan, it states:
    «The dissolution of Syria and Iraq later on into ethnically or religiously unqiue areas such as in Lebanon,
    is Israel’s primary target on the Eastern front in the long run,
    while the dissolution of the military power of those states serves as the primary short term target.

    Syria will fall apart, in accordance with its ethnic and religious structure, into several states such as in present day Lebanon, so that there will be a Shiite Alawi state along its coast, a Sunni state in the Aleppo area, another Sunni state in Damascus hostile to its northern neighbor, and the Druzes who will set up a state, maybe even in our Golan, and certainly in the Hauran and in northern Jordan»


    1. Mahdi Darius NazemroayaSun Nov 17, 04:04:00 PM EST

      North Africa

      Libya is in even worse and used to smuggle weapons into Tunisia and the other surrounding countries.
      There have been clashes and strikes at its oil terminals and the country is effectively divided.
      The Libyan government has little control of the country.

      The real control is in the arms of the militias in the streets.

      Tensions are also escalating with the fears that the militias from Misrata may make a power play for control of even larger chunks of the country and confront Zintan.

      Observers have warned that Sudan, which was divided into two parts in 2011,
      could face even more violence as tribal conflicts intensify and the government in Khartoum loses control over them.
      Although South Sudan has become a neoliberal paradise for investors to exploit its wealth and people,
      it has been plagued by lawlessness, ethnic tensions, and violence.

      A lesson is to be learned here.
      South Sudan was a far better and more peaceful place when it was a part of Sudan.

      Now reports are emerging that there has been a merger of two armed groups in North Africa.
      Mokhtar Belmoktar, the leader of Al-Qaeda in the Maghreb, has announced a new collation with the Movement for Oneness and Jihad in West Africa.

      These groups have been active in places like Algeria and Mali and provided the perfect excuse for external powers to intervene in North Africa.
      Now they declaring that they plan on getting involved in Egypt in a new war that will rage on from North Africa’s Atlantic coastline to the Nile Delta.


    2. Mahdi Darius NazemroayaSun Nov 17, 04:18:00 PM EST

      Bloodbath in Egypt

      The Arab Republic of Egypt, the largest of the Arab countries, is going down the path of Algeria.
      The military is determined to keep its power.
      Egypt has also been central in keeping the Arabs paralyzed in Israel’s designs.

      Yinon’s averred thus about Egypt:

      «Egypt is divided and torn apart into many foci of authority.
      If Egypt falls apart, countries like Libya, Sudan or even the more distant states will not
      continue to exist in their present form and will join the downfall and dissolution of Egypt».

      The Yinon Plan says two important things about Egypt.

      The first is thus:

      «Millions are on the verge of hunger, half the labour force is unemployed,
      and housing is scarce in this most densely populated area of the world.
      Except for the military, there is not a single department operating efficiently and the state is in a permanent state of bankruptcy
      and depends entirely on American foreign assistance granted since the peace.»

      The second is this:

      «Without foreign assistance the crisis will come tomorrow.»

      Oded Yinon must be smiling from wherever he is.
      Things seem to be going his way, at least in parts of the Arab World.

      Note: All quotes are from the Yinon Plan.

    3. Some plan must include the Syrian Kurds..Nothing was mentioned about that.

    4. Good ol' Malthus back from the grave. All those rockets they smuggle to Gaza, maybe the people can find something edible inside those.

    5. In at least one respect Egypt would be happy to be going down Algeria's road. Algeria is still producing 1.5 Million bbl of oil/day, which leaves it with something over A Million bbl/day for Export.

      Egypt, on the other hand, is down to 538,000 bbl/day, and is now in the "need to import" category.


    6. Stephen J. SniegoskiSun Nov 17, 05:00:00 PM EST

      The Yinon Thesis Vindicated: Neocons, Israel, and the Fragmentation of Syria
      By Stephen J. Sniegoski

      Since May of this year, however, the Israeli government has become open in its support for the overthrow of the Assad regime.

      In June, Netanyahu condemned the ongoing massacre of Syrian civilians by Assad,
      blaming the violence on an “Axis of Evil,” consisting of Iran, Syria and Hezbollah.

      “Iran and Hezbollah are an inseparable part of the Syrian atrocities and the world needs to act against them,” he proclaimed.
      This inclusion of Iran and Hezbollah illustrates Israel’s goal of using the Syrian humanitarian issue to advance its own national interest.

      If the Assad regime were to fall, Israel would certainly be more secure with a splintered congeries of small statelets
      than a unified Syria under an anti-Israel Islamist regime.
      Consequently, staunch neoconservative Harold Rhode presents the fragmentation scenario in a positive light in his article,
      “Will Syria Remain a Unified State?” (July 10, 2012).
      In contrast to what has been the conventional Western narrative of the uprising against the Assad regime,
      which presents a heroic Sunni resistance being brutally terrorized by government forces and pro-government Alawite militias,
      Rhode writes with sympathy for the pro-government non-Sunni Syrian minorities:
      “In short, what stands behind most of the violence in Syria is the rise of Arab Sunni fundamentalism in its various forms –
      whether Salafi, Wahhabi, or Muslim Brotherhood.
      All of those threaten the very existence of the Alawites, the Kurds,
      and other members of the non-Sunni ethnic and religious groups.

      “It is therefore much easier to understand why the ruling Alawites feel they are fighting a life and death battle with the Sunnis,
      and why they believe they must spare no effort to survive.

      It also explains why most of Syria’s other minorities – such as the Druze, Ismailis, and Christians –
      still largely support the Assad regime.”


    7. $110 Million/day from light-sweet exports will buy a lot of camelburgers.

    8. Here you go, allen.
      I read portions of the published Yinon Plan, it mentions the Kurds in Iraq, no specific mention of them in Syria.


    9. This comment has been removed by the author.

    10. Panama Ed,

      About 10% of the Syrian population is Kurdish. Yesterday, they completed one phase of driving jihadis out of adjoining land. Turkey is pushing an autonomous Kurdish Syrian zone.

      That is how to play chess.

      Talking about the dispossessed:

      "...The new refugees join an estimated 1.4 million Syrians — 800,000 of whom have registered — who have already found shelter in Lebanon, according to Lebanese officials. The massive influx has proven a burden for Lebanon, and has helped stoke the country's already simmering sectarian tensions.

      The U.N. said in July that 100,000 Syrians have been killed, and has not updated that figure since. Millions of Syrians have been uprooted from their homes because of the fighting..."

      If the reporter had mentioned a Palestinian in need of shoe repair, you would have delivered a six page sermon. But in all this time, I have yet to see a word about the millions of Syrians living in squaller, deprived of their basic human rights.

    11. Could be six, depends on if I wanted to, or not.
      If there was one lined up, which .... now ...

      There are plenty of authors and articles..
      Pretty well researched pieces that conform to the positions and themes in agreement what the desert rat had been saying, for a few years now.

      Yep, right there for the plucking.
      Authenticated, coherent, and on target.

      I never was overly concerned about the refugees from and within Iraq, during the US occupation, there either.
      Nor about the Pashtun that were forced in refugee status in Afpakistan.

      The US does not subsidize the Syrian regime. I have little interest in them, except as to why and how the Christian, Kurd and Druse factions of the population seem to be allied with Assad.

      Assad is doing battle with the Sunni Wahhabi, the number one enemy of the United States. IMO
      I have sympathy for his position, his tribe being a member of a long oppressed sectarian minority,
      a minority that was able to wrest control of the military and then the country from the majority Sunni.

      His father reportedly killed upwards of 50,000 Muslim Brotherhood and their supporters, back in the day.
      Junior is doing even better.

      I think, given the histories, the US is publicly supporting our enemy, in Syria.
      I do not think that the US should support Assad, either.

      We should assist, from afar, with the destruction of the Syrian chemical weapons.

      While supplying humanitarian aid to those Syrians that reach Turkey or Jordon.

    12. Rufus II Sun Nov 17, 04:54:00 PM EST
      In at least one respect Egypt would be happy to be going down Algeria's road.

      Egypt is in a world of hurt when it comes to food and fuel. About 1/2 their food is imported. Without the recent aid of Saudi Arabia, the UAE, and others, Egypt's foreign reserves would be exhausted.

      I said all that to point out the growing turmoil in Libya and the close proximity to some of Libya's best fields and almost all it port facilities - tempting targets. Additionally, as Quirk pointed out recently, water is becoming a scarce commodity. As geology would have it, one of the world's aquifers is a few steps over the border.

      I am not predicting anything. But I am pointing out some options that have not been overlooked by Egypt, especially now that it is between a rock and a hard spot. Desperate times call for desperate measures.

  23. Seattle is leading. They do look good this year. I am hoping they get in the SuperBowl and win. Looks like nice day, mostly, in Seattle.

    Some guy did a wonderful after quarterback sack routine where he played fisherman, tossed the lure, set the hook, an reeled 'im in.

    What with this anti-demo crapparoo, they are starting to go creative mime.

    Gotta love it.

    Think I may have seen Miss T in the crowd with Miss Fely. Snuggled up together like two pearls in a clam.

    back to game.....

    1. Hope Mr. Redinger wasn't watching the game.

    2. It'll all be the fault of Deuce for unceremoniously firing Miss T without any cause.

      And no Quirk I am not sending you the recording I have of the event. You are not going to blackmail my Miss T.

    3. George R.R. MartinSun Nov 17, 05:46:00 PM EST

      “The man is as useless as nipples on a breastplate.”

  24. Useless.

    Miss T would be running the blog, as she ought to be, not messing around with Miss Fely at a football game.

    All the fault of Deuce.

    1. Or were you referring to Quirk?

      No, he is not useless. He can be magnificent.

      He just has something of the scoundrel in him.

    2. You really want worthless? Try rat-o, the very profile of rectumtude.


    3. “May the IRS find that you deduct your pet sheep as an entertainment expense.”

  25. Canadian parliamentary c'tee calls to recognize Jewish refugees of 1948

    "There are 4,315 Jews in the Arab Middle East, down from 856,000 in 1948, according to figures Justice for Jews from Arab Countries presented to the parliamentary committee...
    Jewish refugees, many of whom were forbidden to bring property with them when they emigrated, lost $6 billion in assets as a result of the conflict.
    “The committee recommends that the government of Canada officially recognize the experience of Jewish refugees who were displaced from states in the Middle East and North Africa after 1948,

    1. The value of their holdings was 10 times that of the value of what the displaced arabs lost within Israel.

      Let's settle....

      The Israel needs to give the arab world 3 billion dollars to compensate displaced arabs and the arabs have to give israel 30 billion. and we'll call it even.

      We'll even not demand payment for 1/2 the oil from arabia stolen from us and the property in arabia that was ours...

  26. Seahawks 38
    Vikings 13

    4th quarter

    This one's in the bag.

  27. Blackwater founder Erik Prince personifies the hidden hand in America's terror wars. His company secretly armed and maintained drones in Pakistan, trained CIA hit teams and collected $2 billion as a U.S. government security contractor.

    Mr. Prince said he looks back on that adventure as "13 lost years." The billions of dollars are gone now, and he blames the U.S. government.

  28. Rat wrote:

    "But then, all that was heard was ....

    and then another round of NO!

    But there were no enough votes to stop it, and the NO! crowd refused to participate.
    A portion of the blame for the malfunction, now, is accounted to their failure to perform, then.

    It is a 'governmental' issue, not a partisan one.

    Voting NO! does not alleviate a legislator from responsibility for the legislation, especially if they refused to participate in its formulation.
    Starving the final product of their input, wisdom and insight.

    If only three years ago those legislators knew what you all have come to realize, of late"


    Please cite evidence of the Dem controlled Senate, House, or Socialist President being open to any compromise of any kind wrt Obamacare.

    1. Obamacare's hidden parentage
      Oct 3rd 2013, 15:43 by K.N.C., R.L.W. and G.D.

      Big data reveals Republican policies in America's healthcare law

      ON THE surface, it looks totally partisan.
      Not a single Republican voted for the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, aka "Obamacare".

      But the law is filled with concessions to them.
      A new computer analysis counts the GOP policy ideas that overlap with other bills that made it into the law:
      3% from the House and 8% from the Senate.

      In fact, when "mark-up" bills are excluded—basically, amendments and legislative re-writes—11% and 28% of policy ideas from Congressional and Senate Republicans, respectively, align.

      John Wilkerson of the University of Washington and his colleagues studied the legislative history using big data.
      They ran the PPACA through a text-analysis system that could spot similar wording in previous legislation with a better than 90% accuracy.

      That let them identify the date and sponsor of earlier bills that ended up in the law,
      indicated as circles in the chart.

      Hence, proposals by Republican Senator Chuck Grassley of Iowa on nursing home transparency in March 2009 were incorporated by Democratic lawmakers in later bills, before appearing in the law.

      So was it really necessary to shut down the government?


    2. In a two thousand page bill, plus hundreds of thousands of additional regs, some already written, and some yet to come, one can find just about anything they want. 3 and 8 percent?
      Less than chance.

      So lets leave out amendments and legislative re-writes!

    3. It's the Dems who have defied the law and not yet passed a budget.

      ...and voted down the Socialist's "budget" w/o exception.

    4. Government by Continuing Resolutions and Executive Orders.

      ...and selective failures to enforce laws on the books.

  29. .

    Please don't ask reasonable questions of the rat when he is on a roll, Doug.

    What amuses me is that during the last debate when Romney apologized for using the term Obamacare, Obama said no he like it being called that. As a matter of fact he has been calling that ever since, well at least until recently when he has taken to call it the ACA.

    Now rat blames it on the GOP.

    Pelosi's blaming it on the insurance companies.

    Pretty soon all the libs will be blaming it on Bush's.


    1. When us insiders know that Halliburton and Lester are in on the NO fix as well.

    2. wrt Romney:

      John Stewart (as well as thousands of other lefties in the MSM, Politics, and Hollywood.) has a greater net wealth than the evil Mormon.

    3. Stewart has yet to do anything but sing the praises of Heap Big White Cherokee Squaw in the East.

    4. Rat's source of unbiased "news."

    5. http://www.economist.com/blogs/graphicdetail/2013/10/daily-chart-1

      Obamacare's hidden parentage
      Oct 3rd 2013, 15:43 by K.N.C., R.L.W. and G.D.

      Big data reveals Republican policies in America's healthcare law

      ON THE surface, it looks totally partisan.
      Not a single Republican voted for the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, aka "Obamacare".

      But the law is filled with concessions to them.
      A new computer analysis counts the GOP policy ideas that overlap with other bills that made it into the law:
      3% from the House and 8% from the Senate.

      In fact, when "mark-up" bills are excluded—basically, amendments and legislative re-writes—11% and 28% of policy ideas from Congressional and Senate Republicans, respectively, align.

      John Wilkerson of the University of Washington and his colleagues studied the legislative history using big data.
      They ran the PPACA through a text-analysis system that could spot similar wording in previous legislation with a better than 90% accuracy.

      That let them identify the date and sponsor of earlier bills that ended up in the law,
      indicated as circles in the chart.

      Hence, proposals by Republican Senator Chuck Grassley of Iowa on nursing home transparency in March 2009 were incorporated by Democratic lawmakers in later bills, before appearing in the law.

      So was it really necessary to shut down the government?

    6. By voting NO!, en bloc, the Senate Republicans still got 28% of the policy prescriptions in the legislation.
      If they had cooperated, may have increased to 40 or 50%, may have even gotten the ACA to work, better.

      They call 'em facts, fellas.

    7. Repetition does not change Rat Shit into Rat Pellets.

      See Above, I will not repeat my assertions here.

  30. "You wanna know who killed Kennedy, figure out who killed Jack Ruby."

    Wally Weston

  31. .

    The views of the WaPo Editorial Board...

    Indeed, the only flaw we can see in the EPA’s announcement is that it doesn’t go far enough. Partly, this is because the agency only has authority to waive the current legal requirement for a year; partly it’s because “biofuels are a key part of the Obama administration’s . . . energy strategy,” as EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy put it on Friday. What’s really needed is a repeal of the ethanol mandate, which was enacted in a different time, on the basis of projections about energy markets that have not panned out. More efficient fuel-conservation measures, such as a gas-tax increase, would let broad incentives, not politics, determine the best way to move cars and trucks while meeting energy security and environmental goals.


    Naturally, I post this link since they share my view on the mandate.



    1. They had to relax it or face out of control revolt by the hungry poor of the World.

  32. They had to pass it for us (and them) to see what's in it.

    But few, other than Betsy McCaughey, have read it.