“Our enemies are innovative and resourceful, and so are we. They never stop thinking about new ways to harm our country and our people, and neither do we.” - George W. Bush

All The Best


I want to thank everyone who participated in the Elephant Bar over the past twelve years. We had millions of visitors from all around the World and you were part of it. Over the past dozen years, two or three times a night, I would open my laptop and some of you were always there. I will miss that.

My plans are to continue my work with technology and architecture. You know my interests and thoughts.

At times, things would get a little rough in the EB. To those of you that I may have offended over the years, I apologize. From all of you, I learned and grew.

An elephant never forgets.
Be well.

Deuce, 21 June 2018

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Erdogan’s “dealings with the ISIS are unacceptable - Turkey harbors an ISIS militant camp in Istanbul - Turkey has also allowed weapons to be transported into Syria through its borders - Turkey allows ISIS to sell its oil via Turkey

German deputy speaker: NATO must stop Turkey support for ISIS

By RUDAW 7 hours ago
Claudia Roth: ‘Germany must help the peace process to continue in Turkey.’
Claudia Roth: ‘Germany must help the peace process to continue in Turkey.’

BERLIN, Germany – NATO must force Turkey to stop its undeclared support of the Islamic State (ISIS) and shift its policy toward the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), the deputy speaker of the German parliament said.

Claudia Roth said in an interview with Rudaw that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s government is pursuing a “murky” policy in Syria because it wants the Kurds weakened and their fighters “annihilated.”

“What we have learned is that Mr Erdogan wouldn’t mind if Kurds were weakened and then annihilated,” said Roth, deputy speaker of the Bundestag and a Green Party MP.

Erdogan’s “dealings with the ISIS are unacceptable. I could not believe that Turkey harbors an ISIS militant camp in Istanbul,” Roth said. “Turkey has also allowed weapons to be transported into Syria through its borders. Also that the ISIS has been able to sell its oil via Turkey is extraordinary,” she added.

Turkey categorically denies any dealings with ISIS. But there are many reported accounts of foreign jihadi fighters crossing from Turkey to Syria, wounded militants treated in Turkish hospitals and Ankara turning a blind eye to ISIS selling smuggled oil.

Turkey has invited criticism for its Syria policy. Ankara has remained idle while in Kobane Kurdish fighters of the PKK-affiliated People’s Protection Units (YPG) are making a last stand to keep ISIS from overrunning the Syrian town just across the border.

“I really don’t understand either why would Mr Erdogan and his ministers regard the PKK the same way they view the Islamic State,” Roth said. “Yes, it’s true the PKK does not have a democratic foundation, but it is no ISIS and one should not regard it as such,” she added.

“Germany must put pressure on Turkey to change course and reevaluate its policies. It should also ask NATO members to do the same. Germany must help the peace process to continue in Turkey.” 
Regarding German help for Syrian Kurds, she said “Germany could have done so much more than just sending humanitarian help.”

She added that the world should also have helped the Kurdistan Region in northern Iraq, where the autonomous government has taken in some 1.6 million refugees from Syria and other parts of Iraq.
“Why has the international community not helped Kurdistan and the refugees the way it should have?” Roth questioned. She said she had seen refugees first hand in Kurdistan and the Turkish Syrian border of Suruc.

“It was devastating to see how an entire population is being eradicated before our eyes in Kobane,” she said.
“There is a refugee crisis even there where people have been sheltered in temporary places and on the streets. I want to underline that the international community must act very fast and aid the refugees. I have also asked the German government to increase its humanitarian help,” she added. 
She said that the peace process between the PKK and the Turkish government, which has largely lagged since it was initiated in March 2012, would succeed only if Ankara changed its treatment of the outlawed PKK.

If Turkey continues to regard the PKK as a terrorist organization like ISIS it “will destroy this process and boost extremism among Kurds,” she warned. “In actual fact Kurds are victims of the rotten Turkish policies. No country should accept this.”
Abdullah Ocalan, the jailed leader of the PKK, said recently that the fall of Kobane could kill the Kurdish peace process in Turkey.

Roth blamed regional powers and selfish interests for Kurdish suffering. “Unfortunately some regional powers think only about their interests without thinking about the suffering of the Kurds,” she said. “There is no coordinated action or will against the ISIS in the region, for instance between Iran and Saudi Arabia. I hope the UN will put pressure on them to take a clearer stand.”

She made a call for ISIS to be “annihilated” and targeted economically as well as militarily. 

“Lightly arming Kurds won’t solve the problem. There should be extensive and radical efforts,” she said, fearing that Kobane would fall to ISIS but calling on Kurds not to despair.

“They should know that they have many friends who support them in their battle against the Islamic State.”


  1. Throw the Ass Stabbers out of NATO. Never let them in the EU. Let them form an economic unit with Russia. OOrah!

    1. The French will vacillate in order to mollify their peacefully militant Muslims, but covertly will undermine the Turkish EU plans. The Germans will not permit the entry of Turkey into the EU; they are supporting enough basket case economies and really just do not care much for Turks.

  2. SeaSqawks lost by 7.

    I am doubting they are going to be Super Bowl Champs this year......

    Replace Turkey with Israel, Kurdistan, India, Australia !

  3. Nicholas John Spykman (1893–1943) was a Dutch-American geostrategist, known as the "godfather of containment." As a political scientist he was one of the founders of the classical realist school in American foreign policy, transmitting Eastern European political thought into the United States. A Sterling Professor of International Relations, teaching as part of the Institute for International Studies at Yale University, one of his prime concerns was making his students geographically literate—geopolitics was impossible without geographic understanding. He was married to the children's novelist E. C. Spykman. He died of cancer at the age of 49.

    Spykman published two books on foreign policy. America's Strategy in World Politics was published in 1942 near the entry of the United States into World War II. Concerned with balance of power, he argues that isolationism, relying on the oceans to protect the United States ("hemispheric" or "quarter defense"), was bound to fail. His object was to prevent a U.S. retreat, similar to U.S. policy following World War I. The Geography of the Peace was published the year after Spykman's death. In it he lays out his geostrategy, arguing that the balance of power in Eurasia directly affected United States security.

    In his writings concerning geography and foreign policy, Spykman was somewhat of a geographical determinist. Since geography was "the most fundamentally conditioning factor because of its relative permanence," it was of primary relevance in analyzing a state's potential foreign policy.


    1 Spykman's geostrategy
    1.1 Heartland
    1.2 Rimland
    1.3 Offshore continents
    1.4 Eurasian dynamics
    1.5 U.S. strategic goals
    2 Quotations
    3 Spykman's works
    4 See also
    5 External links

    Spykman's geostrategy

    N.J. Spykman could be considered as a disciple and critic of both geostrategists Alfred Mahan, of the United States Navy, and Halford Mackinder, the British geographer. His work is based on assumptions similar to Mackinder: the unity of world politics, and the unity of the world sea. He extends this to include the unity of the air. The exploration of the entire world means that the foreign policy of any nation will affect more than its immediate neighbors; it will affect the alignment of nations throughout the world's regions. Maritime mobility opened up the possibility of a new geopolitical structure: the overseas empire.

    Spykman adopts Mackinder's divisions of the world, renaming some:

    the Heartland;
    the Rimland (analogous to Mackinder's "inner or marginal crescent"); and
    the Offshore Islands & Continents (Mackinder's "outer or insular crescent").


    >>Concerned with balance of power, he argues that isolationism, relying on the oceans to protect the United States ("hemispheric" or "quarter defense"), was bound to fail.<<

    This guy might be interesting to read, if one could find his books.

    Never heard of him before.

  4. If the Turkish military were still running the country things might be different.

  5. Un-Known Whereabouts
    Gout or Out: North Korea’s No-Show Leader Keeps ‘Em Guessing

    Just where did the Supreme Leader go? An undisclosed location? Or that great Sun Palace in the sky?

    Is it gout, or is he out? If we’re grasping at explanations for North Korean leader Kim Jong Un’s un-expected and un-explained absence over the past month, there can be only two: either he’s indisposed, or he’s deposed.

    Actually, that’s not true. Considering the grand tradition of un-predictability in the Hermit Kingdom, there are countless other possibilities. The Supreme Leader may have been in a mountainside retreat, composing new condemnations against America’s comedians. Or in an underground bunker, yelling at his nation’s meteorologists for their inability to control the weather. Or off in a North Korean forest, riding one of those North Korean unicorns. Or—just as inconceivable and absurd—sentencing entire generations of North Korean families to labor camps. To say nothing of the distraction executing one’s own uncle can be.


    My guess is out, not gout.

    Gout can be too easily controlled by Indomethacin.

    1. actually no bob, Indomethacin is an anti-inflamation med, commonly allopurinal coupled with colcrys is the normal scripts to be used. Indomethacin is also part of that treatment but only helps ease some pain.

  6. It will not merely be American civilians who could contract this deadly disease in the coming weeks. According to an ABC News medical expert, there is no guarantee that the American service personnel who are due to be deployed to West Africa in the coming days in order to help arrest the spread of this latest Ebola epidemic will not contact the virus themselves.

    “Certainly going over there, they could indirectly get contact, but their primary mission is not to take care of patients,” Fauci told ABC News on Sunday. He noted that the mission for American military forces deployed to the region will be focused on “logistics, engineering, command and control, and setting up field hospitals,” and did not concede that there was a high likelihood U.S. forces in the area may be exposed to the virus.

    But ABC News medical expert Richard Besser conceded that there is a “very real” possibility some forces may come into contact with Ebola victims and succumb to the disease themselves.

    “Right now we have a situation where only 20% of patients with Ebola are being treated in treatment units,” Besser told ABC News host Martha Raddatz. “So there are a lot of patients who have Ebola who are not in a protected environment. So the possibility of a soldier getting Ebola is very real and something we have to be ready for.”

    Expert: ‘Very real’ chance U.S. soldiers deployed to African hot zone will get Ebola
    posted at 3:31 pm on October 12, 2014 by Noah Rothman


    More I think about this the more I think it's insane to have sent American military to Africa to 'fight Ebola'.

    Is that really in the job descriptiion?

  7. The U.S.-led coalition against armed Islamist militants is expected to participate in providing air support to the Iraqi ground forces as well as assisting the Iraqi explosive experts in defusing dozens of roadside bombs and booby-trapped houses on the roads leading to Tikrit, the source said.

    The Iraqi security forces, backed by Shiite militias, have been surrounding Tikrit from three directions for months, but IS militants still maintain a hold of the eastern area of the city that links them to another town seized by the militants, the source added.

    Salahudin province is a predominantly Sunni province and its capital Tikrit, some 170 km north of Baghdad, is the hometown of former President Saddam Hussein.

  8. Here's a guy that at least 'thinks big' -

    Disgruntled employee steals train


    1. I remember one time when Quirk detached a caboose from a rolling train, and stole that......but the whole train?


    2. Quirk has it buried in his back yard outside of Detroit, rigged up as a survival and bomb shelter.

      Casino is calling.

      Cheers !

  9. The Islamic State group and allied Sunni militants seized the Anbar city of Fallujah, parts of Ramadi and large rural areas of Anbar early this year. The loss of Fallujah — where American troops engaged in some of the heaviest fighting of the eight-year U.S.-led war in the country — foreshadowed the later loss of second city Mosul and much of the north.


    The attack in Anbar followed a bloody day in the capital, Baghdad, where a series of car bomb attacks killed at least 45 people in Shiite-majority areas. The Islamic State group also claimed responsibility for those attacks.

    The U.S. military said Saturday it launched airstrikes north and west of Baghdad, hitting a small Islamic State fighting unit and destroying armed vehicles. It said Britain participated in the airstrikes.

  10. ‘Germany must help the peace process to continue in Turkey.’

    What is a peace process with respect to ISIS, that they use anaesthetics before sawing off heads?

    1. Naw, they put you to sleep quietly using gas -

      Middle East


      10/12/2014 15:06
      submit to reddit

      Report: Photographs of Kurdish fighters' bodies suggest chemical weapons use by ISIS

      Behind the lines: The defense of Kobani
      Kobani's fall would be symbolic setback for Obama Syr...
      US military says it conducts airstrikes against Islam...

      'MERIA' Journal obtains pictures of fighters killed in July battle with Islamic State marked by "burns and white spots...without any visible wounds or external bleeding.”
      Chemical weapons

      Chemical weapons disposal [file]. (photo credit:REUTERS)

      Photographs obtained by the Middle East Review of International Affairs (MERIA Journal) which were published on Sunday appear to support claims that the Islamic State used chemical weapons against Kurdish fighters in the Kobani enclave on at least one occasion in the past.

      The Syrian town near the Turkish border is currently under siege and in danger of falling under Islamic State control, bringing on fears of a potential massacre.

      The current siege of Kobani is not the first attempt by Islamic State to capture the town. It has been suggested that during a previous attempt, in July, IS unleashed a chemical agent on Kurdish fighters.

      Kurdish activists had previously claimed that the chemical attack occurred on July 12, in the village of Avdiko in Kobani. According to health minister of the Kurdish authority in Kobani, Nisan Ahmed, the bodies of three Kurdish fighters killed in battles with IS were not damaged by bullets, but instead were marked by "burns and white spots...without any visible wounds or external bleeding.”

      The MERIA Journal on Sunday published a number of photographs of the three Kurdish fighters, quoting expert Israeli sources as saying they appear to suggest that a chemical agent, likely mustard, was used. The experts added, however, that further information was needed to conclusively say that the fighters died from a chemical attack.

      MERIA suggests that the chemical weapons may have been obtained following Islamic State's capture of the Muthanna compound, 35 miles north-west of Iraq. A 2007 CIA report cited by the journal, stated that the Muthana compound was used to make chemical weapons, including mustard agent.

      This would suggest that not only was a chemical agent used in the July 12 attack, but Islamic State could possess additional stockpiles of chemical arms.


      The Kurds got gassed by Saddam, now they get gassed by the spawn of Saddam......

    2. >>Responding to the Swedish Prime Minister’s announcement, Israel’s Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman wrote an exclusive Op Ed in the Swedish daily Dagens Nyheter. “This announcement” Lieberman wrote, “was not intended to serve as a genuine solution to a foreign problem. It was intended, so it seems, to placate a certain sector in Swedish public opinion. It is to be regretted when internal considerations determine a counterproductive and irresponsible foreign policy.”<<

      Vell, ja, it ist so.

      The public opinion in question being the Moslems in Sweden.

      Sweden’s Tilt Toward the Palestinians
      October 13, 2014 by Joseph Puder

      The newly elected Swedish government of Prime Minister Stefan Lofven began its term with a clear pro-Palestinian tilt. In his inaugural speech on October 3, 2014, PM Lofven declared that his left-center Social-Democrat party led government would recognize the state of Palestine. “The conflict between Israel and Palestine can only be solved with a two-state solution, negotiated in accordance with international law. The two-state solution requires mutual recognition and a will to co-exist peacefully. Sweden will therefore recognize the state of Palestine.”


      Damn I'm glad I got watered down with some English, French, and German.

      No one can call me 100% idiot, like the Swedes are these days.

      Honest to Gott, one would have to be out of one's mind to bring all those Moslems in there. Malmo, where my Swedish ancestors were from, is Moslem Central in Sweden these days.

      No go for the Swedish Police, and rape central for the blond blue eyed girls.

      Being 100% Swedish is as bad as being Polish !

    3. The Swedes ought at least stick to their neutrality, and butt out, the dumb fuckers.

  11. Most of the Euphrates valley – which runs south east from Turkey through Syria, into Iraq and towards the capital – is now under ISIS control. Were Ramadi to fall, jihadi commanders would control a vital supply chain running from Baghdad directly back to their Syrian headquarters in Raqqa.


    “It’s not a good situation,” admitted one U.S. official.

    The region of Anbar remains haunted by the ghosts of America’s 2003 invasion.

    1. Are you voting in the November elections here, Sam?

      Still time left to get an absentee ballot.

    2. I'm voting straight Republican ticket, except for my friend Wayne's wife, who is running for County Clerk as a Democrat.

      She will win, as no one is running against her.

      Wayne lost another cow to the wolves recently. That's about five or six now, and a horse.

      Damn four legged terrorists.......

    3. The wolves all ought to be rounded up, and let loose in Philly, and Detroit.

    4. .

      To lose one cow, Mr. Obumble, may be regarded as a misfortune. To lose four or five looks like carelessness.


    5. .

      I will be voting straight Democratic when it comes to Michigan Supreme Court candidates. The current Republican majority has proven themselves to be in the pockets of big business and especially the insurance companies. Not only that but only uninformed voters would buy their adds.

      The only ads you see here now are ads touting how new GOP candidates look out for the children and women by imposing harsh verdicts on abusers and rapists. The GOP incumbents ads tout how they have "upheld" convictions on the perps.
      No mention at all of what these judges have done on other issues like those that resulted in the insurance companies lining their pockets at the expense of the public. This despite the fact that the ads are being run by the Chamber of Commerce.


    6. And, hmmmm, let's see, YOU are going to sit out there in the cold each and every night with the cattle, Mr. City Slicker?

      You wouldn't last a weekend............

    7. .

      Nonsense, he should merely hire you. With your expertise in all things technical, you could rig up a camera with telephoto, night vision, and panning capability to tracks the beasts, and then, it should also be simple for you to rig a remotely controlled rifle or bazooka to take them out.

      By the way, wasn't old Wayne your drinking buddy. It kind of sounds like that was a well lubricated tale of woe coming from ol Wayne. He didn't tell you that the same night you told him about that 8 foot long brown trout you caught with that special Royal Coachman you had tied was it?

      Did you guys ever find your car the next morning?


    8. Not a bad idea.......a remotely controlled machine gun......I like it......

      Wayne, as far as I know, is a tea totaller.

      And, we drive pickup trucks, not cars, Slicker.

    9. If you know the difference.......

    10. .

      Right, a Mustang pickup with a broken back window.


    11. .

      Wayne, as far as I know, is a tea totaller.

      Right, but isn't Long Island Ice-Tea a bit hoyty toyty for you hicks?


  12. When I suggested this, I was called a mass murderer by Rufus........

    Free the Air Force to Stop ISIS
    October 12, 2014 by Daniel Greenfield

    Daniel Greenfield, a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the Freedom Center, is a New York writer focusing on radical Islam. He is completing a book on the international challenges America faces in the 21st century.

    Jan. 14 airpower summary: A-10s show force

    Waiving the ridiculous collateral damage rules was a step in the right direction, but it’s not nearly enough. Obama prefers drone strikes to actual combat because they limit civilian casualties. But just as in Afghanistan, we face a choice between useless attacks meant to spare civilian casualties that allow mass murdering Islamic Jihadists to take over… or serious bombing.

    The Pentagon has compensated for this, in part, by easing back in Syria on the restrictive rules used in Afghanistan to minimize civilian casualties. But in many other aspects, current and former Air Force personnel say, U.S. Central Command is fighting the war against ISIS in largely the same way it operates against the Taliban in Afghanistan. “The strategic problem posed by [ISIS] is different than that in Afghanistan,” one former senior Air Force official said. “So the similarity of the minimal application of airpower, along with excessive micromanagement by the CENTCOM bureaucracy, is a symptom of not recognizing that this is a different strategic problem.”

    After all, ISIS isn’t simply a collection of terrorists. The group holds territory, and manages an inventory of heavy military and civilian equipment. There’s a reason they call themselves the Islamic State. So instead of worrying about individual air strikes, this former official said, the CENTCOM needs to run a wider more free-ranging air war where more targets are hit much more quickly. “Very few in the military today have experience in planning and executing a comprehensive air campaign—their experience is only in the control of individual strikes against individual targets,” the official added. “There needs to be constant 24/7 overwatch, and immediate attack of any [ISIS] artillery, people, vehicles, or facilities that they are occupying.”

    But that is a view shared mainly by those within the Air Force—which has, for decades, argued that it has the ability to win wars though strategic bombing.

    Obama’s neglect allowed ISIS to scale up to something like an army, more Hezbollah, but still leagues away from a bunch of terrorists in caves. ISIS successfully lives off the land and uses conquest to compensate for shortages and losses. Its momentum has to be broken or it will go on getting bigger and more dangerous.


    1. .

      There have been a number of articles charging that Obama tends to micromanage the war, that all major airstrikes require his approval.

      If true, one has to ask if this explains the paucity of airstrikes we have seen. Another question would be is it actually Obama who approves the strikes or is it his lawyers.


  13. .

    Obama now phoning it in — literally

    He put on his pants (most likely one leg at a time, but perhaps not), then slipped on his black windbreaker, the one with the presidential seal on one side, his name on the other (in case he forgets who he is). He put on some comfy sports socks, laced up his shoes real tight — it would be a long, hard day.

    Then he grabbed his leather bag of tools, which also bears the presidential seal and the number “44” (in case he forgets which number president he is). He stomped out of the White House and boarded his presidential motorcade just before a pool of traveling reporters was ushered out (he would, again, go unseen for the day, not unlike Kim Jong-un of late).

    That was at noon. And yes, you guessed it, the president was not off to “work,” but to play golf — and set a milestone in the doing. Mr. Obama was heading out for his 200th round since taking office. Two hundredth! Tiger Woods, perhaps the most famous professional golfer in the world, has played just 269 rounds since Jan. 20, 2009 — and that’s his day job. Go figure.

    Read more: http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2014/oct/12/joseph-curl-obama-now-phoning-it-in-literally/#ixzz3G071kHtD
    Follow us: @washtimes on Twitter


    1. It only makes sense. He has been told by the Democratic election brain trust to 'hide out' until after the November elections.

      The idea is of the 'out of sight, out of mind' variety.

      In other words, he is dead weight, the kind that sinks political ships.......

    2. When I was in Moscow earlier this month I stopped in at Democratic Headquarters down on Main Street downtown.

      There was a forlorn lost soul of the college type manning the fort.

      We were the only two there.

      "Getting any customers?" I ask. "Place seems deserted."

      "O yes Sir, I have a lot of folks stop by."

      "Where are they?"

      He sheepishly grinned a shit eating grin.

      "You are going to get ripped a new asshole, you know that, do you not?"

      "We are putting up a good fight" he replied.

      I looked around at all the political posters.

      "You don't have one winner here" says I. "Why do you waste your time?"

      Now get this:

      "I am called to it" he answered.


    3. .

      Hard to say whether that is any worse than those that keep voting for the same old party over and over under the misapprehension that one group of dicks is even marginally better than the other.


    4. Go Hillary !

      She ain't no dick.

      Eh ?

    5. Your Hillary comment goes down in the anals of this blog, along with Deuce quoting Pontius Pilate, Rufus saving uncounted lives by selling insurance policies, and rathole quoting Schopenhauer.

      Ha ha

    6. .

      You are like the rat. You haven't a clue as to what I say about Hillary or you just modify it to suit you own needs. When you are corrected you simply ignore it and keep repeating the same bullshit.

      Two peas in a pod. Opposite sides of the same coin. Alter Egos. Twin brothers of different mothers. Dopplegangers.


    7. Sir, if I am not mistaken, you said you might well vote for Hillary.

      If that is not the case, please correct me, because you did indeed say something positive about Hillary.

      You, Sir, are yourself like the rat. You try to bury your statements, counting on the laziness of others in not collecting and storing the vomit.

      Sir !

      You should be deeply and eternally ashamed of yourself.

    8. (guess I put Q in his place !)

    9. That golf criticism is a load if bullshit. 200 rounds of golf over 6 years equates to much less than once per week. Taft played every day. Most professionals play every day all day and even if the article got his number of tournament rounds correct it doesn't account for the practice rounds and sessions. Heck, I run my own business and I can get un near a hundred rounds in a year.

    10. .

      Sir, if I am not mistaken, you said you might well vote for Hillary.

      If that is not the case, please correct me, because you did indeed say something positive about Hillary.

      You are just like the rat, Obumble. You pull a single statement out of the context that gives it meaning and latch onto it like some tired old dog with a bone. Then, you conjure absurd conclusions out of nothing from within the dark miasma that is your mind. No, I did not have anything positive to say about Hillary. I can only makes the same suggestion I make to rat, go back and reread my post. Perhaps, repetition and rote memorization will suffice where any innate intelligence falls short.


    11. This comment has been removed by the author.

    12. .

      If that is not the case, please correct me...

      I have corrected you on these points three or four times, yet, you continue in your obtuse mewlings. I am unsure whether this is the result of stubborn obduracy or just your failing faculties.


    13. .


      That golf criticism is a load if bullshit.

      Did you bother to read the article, Ash? Or did you just fail to understand the point that was being made, that Obama is more interested in the politics and the perks of the job than he is with the substance.

      By the way, that analogy you used, comparing your job to that of the POTUS, did give me a chuckle. Thanks.


    14. The point is simple quirk- playing an average of less than 1 round of golf per week is nit a lot of golf and in no way compares to how much golf tiger woods plays.

    15. .

      Evidently, you still didn't bother to read the article, Ash. Come back when you do.


    16. That was your highlighted.point from the article old man and based in its absurdity there is no need to look any further at it. If you think there us something salient in it, well, excerpt it.

    17. .

      Had that been your first response, Ash, I could have accepted it. Now, after it was pointed out to you that there was more to the story and that it had to do with more about Obama than the frequency of his golf, your comment merely seems a little petty and peevish, not to mention silly.

      Not quite on a par with your equating your job with that of POTUS but still...



  14. QuirkMon Oct 13, 02:32:00 AM EDT


    Hard to say whether that is any worse than those that keep voting for the same old party over and over under the misapprehension that one group of dicks is even marginally better than the other.


    The Republicans are better on taxes.

    1. And taxation is the issue that most affects most of the people most of the time, year after year.

      You simply think it cool to dismiss all of them with a wave of your superior hand............

    2. .

      Bullshit, you moron, the Republican stance on taxes is simple, cut corporate taxes, cut taxes that aid the wealthy, leave all the tax breaks and loopholes that aid specific companies and industries in place, and oh by the way, if somehow the little guy's taxes are marginally cut somewhere in the overall process that might be nice and it would be a nice talking point next election.

      The GOP is the SAME as the Dems in most respects. The only difference between them is which interest group they represent.

      Your a faux farmer, grow a brain.


  15. It’s really time now to stop this real pathetic and cynical hypocrisy. Our enemy is ISIS not Assad. He did not kill Americans
    neither supported our enemies as the Saudi , UAE and Erdogan did.Erdogan and the Turks continue to outwit Obama (that's not very difficult, is it ?). Why does Turkey demand a no-fly zone when ISIS don't have aircraft? These incredibly brave Kurds of Kobani in their fight for their life and freedom against IS fanatic barbarians and to give them the weapons they need to defend themselves and have unceasingly asked for. IS have killed in cold blood thousands of the needy, orphans and prisoners! and mostly other Muslim civilians! Those who have been misled in joining this gang of Shaytan should see the truth and leave before it is too late to avoid hell!

  16. Quirk's presence at the front - you recall he left for the Middle East a short while ago - has firmed things up already -

    Activists: Kurds halt ISIL advance in Kobani
    Lefteris Pitarakis, Associated Press 2:05 p.m. EDT October 12, 2014

    (Photo: Getty images)

    MURSITPINAR, Turkey (AP) — Kurdish fighters have been able to halt the advance of the Islamic State extremist group in the Syrian border town of Kobani, where the U.S.-led coalition has been carrying out airstrikes for more than two weeks, activists said Sunday.

    The coalition, which is targeting the militants in and around Kobani, conducted at least two airstrikes Sunday on the town, according to an Associated Press journalist. The U.S. Central Command said warplanes from the United States, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates conducted four airstrikes in Syria on Saturday and Sunday, including three in Kobani that destroyed an Islamic State fighting position and staging area.

    The Syrian Kurdish enclave has been the scene of heavy fighting since late last month, with the heavily armed Islamic State fighters determined to capture the border post and deal a symbolic blow to the coalition air campaign.


    Kobani emerges as propaganda boost for Islamic State


    Fight for Kobani is a spectator sport in Turkey

    The extremist group has carved out a vast stretch of territory stretching hundreds of miles from northern Syria to the outskirts of Baghdad and imposed a harsh version of Islamic rule. The fighters have massacred hundreds of captured Iraqi and Syrian soldiers, terrorized religious minorities, and beheaded two American journalists and two British aid workers.

    The U.S. has been speaking with Turkish officials about stepped up efforts to equip and train Syrian rebels battling both the Islamic State group and forces loyal to President Bashar Assad. U.S. and European military officials will travel to Turkey this week to meet with officials there and discuss the different ways Turkey can contribute.

    On Sunday, a Turkish government official confirmed that Ankara has agreed with the U.S. to train 4,000 Syrian opposition fighters vetted by Turkish intelligence. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak on the record.

    1. The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said Islamic State militants have not been able to advance in Kobani since Friday but are sending in reinforcements. The Observatory's chief, Rami Abdurrahman, said the group appears to have a shortage of fighters and has brought in members of its religious police known as the Hisbah to take part in the battles.

      Since the offensive on Kobani began, some 550 people have been killed, including about 300 Islamic State fighters, 225 Kurdish gunmen and 20 civilians, said the Observatory, which relies on a network of activists across Syria. It said the number of jihadists killed could be much higher.

      Farhad Shami, a Kurdish activist in Kobani reached by phone from Beirut, said the town was "relatively quiet" on Sunday apart from sniper fire. He said Islamic State fighters launched an offensive south of the town on Saturday but were repelled and lost many fighters.

      "There are large numbers of dead fighters for Daesh who were either killed by the People's Protection Units or the (coalition) airstrikes," Shami said, referring to the main Kurdish force and using an Arabic acronym for the Islamic State group.

      He said Kurdish fighters also were able to regain the border village of Tel Shair west of Kobani.

      Abdurrahman said 36 jihadi fighters were killed in Kobani on Saturday. The jihadists control more than a third of the town.

      Meanwhile in Beirut, hundreds of Kurds marched through the streets of the city to the U.N. headquarters. They chanted pro-Kurdish slogans and called on the world to help those fighting in Kobani, where more than 200,000 people have fled across the border into Turkey.

      In Cairo, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon told reporters on the sidelines of a Gaza reconstruction conference on Sunday that "thousands of lives are at stake" in the town.

      "I once again call on all parties that can act to step up to prevent a massacre and protect civilians at Kobani," he said.

      Associated Press writers Bassem Mroue in Beirut and Desmond Butler in Istanbul contributed to this report.

    2. .

      The coalition, which is targeting the militants in and around Kobani, conducted at least two airstrikes Sunday on the town, according to an Associated Press journalist. The U.S. Central Command said warplanes from the United States, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates conducted four airstrikes in Syria on Saturday and Sunday, including three in Kobani that destroyed an Islamic State fighting position and staging area.

      A rather pathetic display of military might, IMO.

      I see the Turks have agreed to allow the US to use Turkish air fields for launching attacks against IS. We will see if it makes a difference.


    3. You are seeing cock eyed, as usual.......

      October 13, 2014
      No, Turkey has not given us permission to use their air bases to attack ISIS
      By Rick Moran

      Yesterday, unnamed administration officials leaked the good news that Turkey would allow us to use their air bases to attack IS forces in Syria and Iraq:

      Also Sunday, officials confirmed that Turkey agreed to let U.S. and coalition fighter aircraft launch operations against ISIS militants in Iraq and Syria from Turkish bases, including Incirlik Air Base in the south. U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel, who has been traveling in South America, has said the U.S. wanted access to the Turkish bases.

      The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss private talks between the Americans and Turks.

      Great news! Except...it isn't true.

      Washington Post:

      Turkey denied Monday that it has reached a new agreement to allow the United States to use the Incirlik Air Base in southern Turkey in the fight against the Islamic State militant group, contradicting Obama administration officials.

      Turkish officials said talks on the subject are continuing, news agencies reported from Ankara, the Turkish capital.

      Turkey and the United States have reached an accord on the training of Syrian rebels, Reuters news agency reported, citing officials in the Turkish prime minister’s office, but it was not immediately clear who would train the rebels or where.

      Obama administration officials said Sunday that Turkey had agreed to allow a U.S.-led coalition to use Turkish military bases for the fight against the Islamic State, a radical Islamist armed group also known as ISIS or ISIL, and to use Turkish territory as part of a training program for moderate Syrian opposition fighters.

      “That’s a new commitment and one that we very much welcome,” Susan E. Rice, President Obama’s national security adviser, said on NBC’s “Meet the Press.”

      What an astounding level of incompetence. When the national security advisor goes on TV and claims something that is demonstrably false, is it because she was misinformed? How can you not know the status of such important negotiations?

      There's no guarantee these negotiations will pan out. Turkey still wants a no fly zone on the Syrian border while the US says it's impossible. And if we agree to establish a no fly zone in order to get Turkey to allow us to use their bases, it will mean ramping up our involvement in the Syrian civil war. It would take hundreds of US military personnel to establish the no fly zone - all of them targets for both Assad and ISIS.

      Yep - we're in the very best of hands...

      Read more: http://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2014/10/no_turkey_has_not_given_us_permission_to_use_their_air_bases_to_attack_isis.html#ixzz3G2RTn4d9
      Follow us: @AmericanThinker on Twitter | AmericanThinker on Facebook

      One of your main, and debilitating, problems is your continuing refusal to read reliable sources, like American Thinker.

  17. Q's testiness of late is a function of his exhaustion.

    It is tough blogging and fighting at the same time.

    1. Naw, his meds are out of balance again.

    2. Very possible, Ash, very possible.

      He takes such a smorgasbord of meds it would be hard for even a normal person to keep it all straight.

  18. Getting our atheism straight in our heads -

    >>William James—himself an eminent scientist—pointed out that science rests on emotional commitment. "Our belief in truth itself," wrote James, "that there is a truth, and that our minds and it are made for each other—what is it but a passionate affirmation of desire, in which our social system backs us up? We want to have a truth; we want to believe that our experiments and studies and discussions must put us in a continually better and better position towards it; and on this line we agree to fight out our thinking lives. But if a … sceptic asks us how we know all this, can our logic find a reply? No! certainly it cannot. It is just one volition against another—we willing to go in for life upon a trust or assumption which he, for his part, does not care to make."<<

    Irrational Atheism
    Not believing in God isn't always based on reasoned arguments—and that's okay.
    Crispin Sartwell Oct 11 2014, 12:28 PM ET


    Religious beliefs are remarkably various. But sometimes it can seem that there is only one way to be an atheist: asserting, on the basis of reasoned argument, that belief in God is irrational. The aging "new atheists"—Sam Harris, Richard Dawkins, and Daniel Dennett, for example—pit reason against faith, science against superstition, and declare for reason and science.

    It pictures the universe as a natural system, a system not guided by intelligent design and not traversed by spirits; a universe that can be explained by science, because it consists of material objects operating according to physical laws. In this sense, atheism embodies a whole picture of the world, offering explanations about its most general organization to the character of individual events.

    Ironically, this is similar to the totalizing worldview of religion—neither can be shown to be true or false by science, or indeed by any rational technique. Whether theistic or atheistic, they are all matters of faith, stances taken up by tiny creatures in an infinitely rich environment.


    Good article by a sensible atheist.

  19. Right

    “'There is simply no way, for instance, Daesh could storm the large, combative Shiite militias that are awaiting in the Iraqi capital, and which enjoy unconditional state backing, from both the local government and Iran,' he said in an e-mailed reply to questions."

    Islamic State Seizes Iraq Base Amid Concern for Baghdad

    1. .

      The statement is true in the sense that it is inconceivable IS can take Baghdad. However, they can make things miserable there. The uptick in the terrorist bombings there are one way.

      CNN analysts report they have seen IS troops operating about 8 miles from Baghdad, close enough to bombard the International Airport. Like Baghdad, it is unlikely the airport would fall what with the US troops and copters stationed there; however, it can be harassed and flights delayed or cancelled. The US has 1600 people and diplomatic personnel in Baghdad and the airport is their only way out.

      People disregard the importance of optics, yet, when you are trying to convince a population to stand up to an enemy like IS, the mere appearance of which side seems to be winning can be important.


    2. Wasn't it CNN that said ISIS was moving 10,000 fighters from the North to Anbar?

      They were, also, promoting the idea that "aliens" took that Malaysian Airplane, right?

    3. "QuirkMon Oct 13, 04:04:00 PM EDT
      Like Baghdad, it is unlikely the airport would fall what with the US troops and copters stationed there..."

      I do not recall any reports of artillery being used around Baghdad. Maybe IS has none there. If IS is able to get artillery within range of the 155 guns (14 miles) and have spotters directing fire, the helicopters will have to vacate until the artillery is neutralized. If the helicopters are in hardened bunkers able to withstand 155mm penetrating rounds, that will mitigate but not eliminate the risk of their loss. Once the helicopters leave shelter to take flight (a lengthy process), they are vulnerable to guns capable of firing 2 - 4 rounds per minute. It would be dicey.

    4. What seems to be minimized is the very fact that IS is at the gates of Baghdad. Some reports indicate that they are operating within Baghdad.

      As Lee asked before the Seven Days' Battle, "How are we going to get at those people"?

      What is being maximized is the strength of the Iraqi Army and Shi'a militias within Baghdad. Let me rephrase, how confident can we be that the defenders are that strong and that competent? It seems to me that if I had the numbers of troops available within Baghdad that are claimed, and those troops were as fired up as claimed, I would, at least, be skirmishing and doing recon in force -- anything that would take harass IS and take away its freedom to operate at will.

      Score me as skeptical of any propaganda coming out of Baghdad.

    5. .

      CNN? Actually, what CNN said was IS moved 10,000 troops from the Mosul area AND Syria. However, if you don't like CNN,

      3 days ago

      ISIS has infiltrated suburbs just eight miles from Baghdad's international airport... and has missiles that can shoot down a plane

      • ISIS militants have now reached Baghdad's outer suburb of Abu Ghraib
      • Jihadists are currently engaging in hit and run attacks against Iraqi troops
      • The suburb lies just eight miles from the country's international airport
      • Heavily-armed militants have sourced shoulder-fired anti-aircraft missiles

      Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2788743/isis-infiltrated-suburbs-just-eight-miles-baghdad-s-international-airport-wields-shoulder-fired-anti-aircraft-missiles.html#ixzz3G3l6UU4F
      Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook

      2 days ago

      Iraq asks for US ground troops as Isil threaten Baghdad

      Islamic State jihadists move within eight miles of the Iraqi capital, sparking calls for America to return to the country


      Iraqi officials have issued a desperate plea for America to bring US ground troops back to the embattled country, as heavily armed Islamic State militants came within striking distance of Baghdad.

      Amid reports that Isil forces have advanced as far as Abu Ghraib, a town that is effectively a suburb of Baghdad, a senior governor claimed up to 10,000 fighters from the movement were now poised to assault the capital.

      The warning came from Sabah al-Karhout, president of the provisional council of Anbar Province, the vast desert province to the west of Baghdad that has now largely fallen under jihadist control.

      The province’s two main cities, Fallujah and Ramadi, were once known as “the graveyard of the Americans”, and the idea of returning...

      1 day ago

      Battle for Baghdad: ISIS now within 8 miles of airport, armed with MANPADS

      Islamic State’s offensive on the Iraqi capital intensified as the jihadist fighters advanced as far as Abu Ghraib, a suburb only 8 miles away from Baghdad’s international airport.

      The outer suburb of Abu Ghraib is also the site of the infamous prison the US military used to humiliate and torture Iraqi detainees.

      There are reports by the Iraqi military that the militants are in possession of MANPAD anti-aircraft missiles. The short-range, shoulder-fired missiles can shoot down airplanes within a range of 15,000 feet.


      Today from the WaPo

      The instability in Anbar has stoked fears that Islamic State fighters could use their gains to push into areas closer to the capital, including the volatile Abu Ghraib district, which lies just west of Baghdad’s international airport. So far Baghdad has largely avoiding being in firing range of the Islamic State, though the group has carried out sporadic mortar attacks and regular suicide bombings in the capital. On Monday, bombings in mostly Shiite neighborhoods of Baghdad killed at least 30 people, the Associated Press reported.



    6. .

      I do not recall any reports of artillery being used around Baghdad. Maybe IS has none there.

      A possibility. Though if they are there that could change.


    7. 155 mm HE rounds can penetrate up to 28” of reinforced concrete. HE rounds with concrete piercing fuses can penetrate up to 46” of reinforced concrete.

      I have seen no report on the rounds available to IS.

    8. .

      I linked a comment to the helicopter issue below by mistake.


  20. "QuirkMon Oct 13, 11:10:00 AM EDT
    A rather pathetic display of military might, IMO."

    If these attacks were directed at my home, it would be of grave concern. It these attacks were directed at my town ... not so much ...

    I concur: "pathetic" is the ideal word.

  21. I don't know; Very few, if any, civilians have died in Iraq as a result of our strikes, a whole bunch of ISIS have, and No Americans have been killed.

    Meantime, ISIS is almost completely rolled back from the North, and has been kicked off two of the three dams.

    Not so bad for a little "flyin' around, and bombing," I'd say.

    1. Rufus IIMon Oct 13, 03:17:00 PM EDT
      I don't know; Very few, if any, civilians have died in Iraq as a result of our strikes, a whole bunch of ISIS have, and No Americans have been killed.

      That's right you don't KNOW. And if there are were any I am sure you'd say that those deaths were ok, after all they were collateral damage, whereas the "civilians" that died by Israel's hand were victims.

    2. Rufus: Not so bad for a little "flyin' around, and bombing," I'd say.

      But when Israel was "flyin' around, and bombing," they were called cowards….


    3. I think that what some of you may be missing is that, except for when we fly a "Joint" Mission with one of our coalition partners, we don't comment on what They are doing.

      While we are flying our four or five missions / day, the Brits, and the Aussies, and the French, and the Dutch, and the Belgians are also flying over Iraq, and

      the Sauds, and the UAE, are striking targets in Syria.

      In short, there is more going on than is being discussed by our DOD.

    4. I am confident that anyone flying operations will notify the press. All our so-called allies want to share the limelight and the U.S. certainly wants it to appear that everyone is pulling his weight. As to official DoD comments, you may be correct. To know for sure, I would have to do some digging.

    5. .

      Up to this point, it appears the US pretty much is the coalition.


    6. .

      In Libya, despite videos of bombed homes, pictures of dead children, and interviews with distraught civilians, the constant message we received from DOD officials was "We aren't able to confirm those reports at this time."

      In Syria, when there were complaints of civilian deaths do to US bombing raids, the DOD said, ""We aren't able to confirm those reports at this time."

      Don't expect things to change.


    7. .

      ...the helicopters will have to vacate until the artillery is neutralized.

      A point I hadn't considered. I just assumed they would be used to take out enemy positions along in conjunction with planes doing conventional bombing of any artillery sites. However, if you think about it, using Apaches is about as close to having 'boots on the ground' as you can get without actually having boots on the ground.

      Add to that reports that Obama is micromanaging bombing targets, the need to minimize US deaths, the MANPADS IS is reported to have, and maybe the risks outweigh the benefits.


  22. The "politics" of this are pretty mixed. I'm not sure that, say, France, or Belgium, wants to make a big deal out of every single flight.

    1. .

      Our allies in the 'coalition' seem to be using 'stealth' in more ways than one.


  23. 300 men defending a perimeter the size the Baghdad airport is thin coverage. I don't know what to make of it.

  24. The Bard of MurdockMon Oct 13, 10:15:00 PM EDT

    It is a simple matter to understand the strategy here. We say that it is a critical national security matter to stop ISIS, then we refuse to take the actions that will stop ISIS. Why does everyone want to make this complicated?