“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."

Thursday, March 24, 2016

The idea that Cruz is considered the only ‘reasonable’ alternative to Trump says all that need be said about the state of the modern GOP

Dear Trump & Cruz: Muslim Turkey arrested Brussels Terrorist & Gave him to European Authorities

The paroxysms of hatred and bigotry spewed by the two GOP frontrunners in the 2016 presidential campaign probably do not need any pretext, since Trump and Cruz are clearly sadistic and unfair individuals. But the Brussels airport and metro attacks gave them another excuse to blame all Muslims for the actions of a tiny fringe. 

Trump accused Muslims of not reporting terrorist activity to the government, and suggested that torture would be useful, and then wanted to put all mosques under surveillance, and again called for a Muslim exclusion act regarding Muslims coming to the US. Cruz appears to think that Muslim Americans live all together so that their ‘neighborhoods’ can be patrolled. But most Muslims in the US are not segregated in that way, living in amongst all other kinds of Americans. Most terrorism in the US is anyway by white nationalists and anti-abortion nuts.
Ripping up the Bill of Rights is an odd platform for “conservative” candidates. What is it that they want to conserve if not the Constitution? Arbitrary search and seizure of personal papers and effects, which is what they mean by surveillance, was the technique used by George III, against whom the American Revolution was fought to stop such abuses. Trump and Cruz want to go back to those George III techniques.

But in any case, it turns out that the central premise of this sort of hate speech toward Muslims is simply incorrect.

Turkey, a Muslim-majority state, arrested one of the Brussels attackers (Ibrahim El Bakraoui?) in summer of 2015, in Gaziantep not far from Syria. Turkey determined that the individual had links to terrorist groups and posed a danger. It then turned him back over to Europe with a warning that he was, in Ankara’s view, a very dangerous individual.

Turkey alleges that Belgium blithely declared that there was no evidence El Bakraoui was a radical and let him go. Just a guess, but if Turkey arrests you for going to Syria to fight alongside Daesh (ISIS, ISIL), I’d say that’s material support of terrorism and should put you away.

Moreover, it has come out that the brothers were a petty thiefs, burglars and carjackers, not pious men who showed up to mosque much.

So the hateful and unconstitutional methods of Trump and Cruz wouldn’t have done anything to identify the El Bakraoui brothers. And it turns our that Trump is dead wrong that Muslims did not finger the El Bakraouis. A Muslim government and Muslim police arrested one of them, sniffed out his terrorism, turned him over to European authorities, and explicitly warned them that he had been trying to join Daesh in Syria.

El Bakraoui was clearly depressed and filled with despair about his future, fearing a lifetime in jail for his Daesh associations. But if he had just been investigated, tried and incarcerated, he could not have lashed out against innocents in this way.

So we can conclude that a few Muslims are petty criminals and attracted to Daesh, and that other Muslims can sometimes recognize the syndrome quite clearly, and it is the European authorities who had difficulty acting on the intelligence coup they were handed by Muslim Turkey.
The story underlines how only better cooperation between Muslim countries and NATO can hope to defeat Daesh. Trump & Cruz are seeking worse cooperation, which will make our world more dangerous.
Related video:


  1. Juan Cole is an irritating and disingenuous writer.

    Let him send his daughters to Sweden and have him tell them to walk around the moslem areas at night.

    As for American moslems not clubbing up it's just a matter of numbers, and time.

    "First we show the Poles, then everybody else"

    Hamtramck, Michigan moslem city councilman upon a moslem majority first being elected to the city council there.

    They will club up. It's just a matter of numbers, and time.

    It's always the same.

    The second generation moslem immigrants are worse than the first.

    They always want Sharia, which is antithetical to our Constitution.

    Stop Moslem Immigration To USA Now

    1. According to Juan Cole it's all the fault of the Belgians -

      "Turkey alleges that Belgium blithely declared that there was no evidence El Bakraoui was a radical and let him go."


    2. Do you have any data sets to the contrary, Robert "Draft Dodger" Peterson?

      I think not, but you could surprise us ...

  2. I think you missed the point. Juan Cole is asserting that we need the help of Muslims in order to defeat Islamic terrorism.

    He cites a Muslim country giving intelligence to a Christian country in the war against Islamic terrorists. The Belgians did not take the warning seriously.

    Hezbollah is a staunchly nationalists and Islamic group fighting ISIS as are Shiite and Kurdish Muslims.

    Cruz and Trump show that they have no clue on military matters.

    When winning a war as opposed to fighting a war, you rely on all available assets to achieve victory. Both Cruz and Trump are as idiotic as J. Paul Bremner when it comes to strategic thinking.

    1. The biggest victims of Islamic terror are Muslims. They are our natural allies. Don’t Bremerize them.

    2. Hezbollah is the single largest terror group in the world, yes they re fighting the Sunni, but that doesn't excuse their wanton murder, torture and destruction they reek.

      They have killed more moslems than Israel.


    3. But Hezbollah receives no support from the United States, making them a non-issue in US politics.

      Hezbollah should be allies of the US, whose only military enemy, acknowledged by Congress, is the al-Qeada organization. Which the President has determined the Islamic State to be part of.

      Israel refuses to engage the enemies of the United States, indeed, Israel funds the Islamic State through the purchase of 'Conflict Oil'.

  3. Personally, I dislike all the Abrahamic religions. Two of the three are death cults but Islam is the worst. The World would be better without any religion and instead focus on a good moral life that values human life but accepts death for what it is, an ending.

    1. Once again your ignorance shines bright.

      Judaism is not a death cult.

      It doesn't promote heaven as reward, it doesn't say when you die "you went to a better place".

      You would have thought you might have learned something in the past 8 years...

      MY BAD...

    2. I said two of the three. I assumed that anyone with a minimal amount of knowledge would know that Judaism is not one of the two. All you have to to is look at Christian icons and know that it is a death cult. The cross and the resurrection glorify the myth of death being some type of rebirth.

      Let’s stipulate that you excel at misunderstanding and are deficient at normal levels of comprehension.

    3. You are not as “BAD” as you are STUPID.

    4. I freely admit that I have met very few stupid Jews. Thanks for making it more real.

    5. ..and broadening my experience.

  4. When you accept that death is an ending and that there is no rebirth or afterlife, you are free to focus on the wonder of your own being and accept the temporary privilege and reward of life.

    1. "Death is different from what anyone supposed, and luckier"

      Walt Whitman

  5. "Juan Cole is asserting that we need the help of Muslims in order to defeat Islamic terrorism."

    Jihad Watch

    Exposing the role that Islamic jihad theology and ideology play in the modern global conflicts

    Belgian cops asked Muslims for help in finding jihad bombers and were ignored

    March 23, 2016 12:11 pm By Robert Spencer 44 Comments

    Remember this the next time you see a mainstream media story weeping over how Muslims in the areas from which the jihad murderers came are being regarded with suspicion.


    “City of Jihad: Chilling map reveals how Isis fanatics established network of terror where they could plot under noses of police,” by Jake Wallis Simons, Mailonline, March 23, 2016:

    “Police in the district of Schaerbeek said their pleas for help were ignored…

    The seeds of the terror blasts that shook Europe were planted by a brotherhood of childhood friends who grew up just a few doors away from each other in a part of Brussels dubbed the ‘crucible of terror’.

    Police following the trail of the terrorist murderers behind the atrocities in France and Belgium have repeatedly arrived at a single block of housing in Molenbeek, a district of Brussels known as a hotbed of jihadism.

    The centre of the deadly network is the Abdeslam family home, a first floor apartment on Gemeenteplaats, behind the local police station – and just round the corner from the home of Abdelhamid Abaaoud, the brains behind the Paris attacks.

    Abaaoud, the linchpin of the terror cell, was killed in a furious shootout with police in Saint-Denis, Paris, in the aftermath of the November massacres. He has emerged as the group’s ringleader, along with Salah Abdeslam.

    Brothers Salah and Brahim Abdeslam were involved in the carnage in Paris, in which Brahim, 31, was killed in a suicide attack on the Comptoir Voltaire restaurant.

    It is understood that Salah, 26, went on the run without detonating his suicide vest.

    1. Salah, who is accused of making the bombs used in the attacks, was arrested last week round the corner from the family home in a frantic police raid after four months on the run. He is also thought to have been involved in the Brussels attacks with a ‘new network’ of fanatics.

      Just a few doors down from the Abdeslam and Abaaoud apartments is the family home of Mohamed Abrini, 30, who drove the Abdeslam brothers to Paris to carry out the attacks and is accused of being involved with the Brussels plot. He remains at large, and police are desperately trying to track him down.

      Abrini is a childhood friend of Salah Abdeslam, and it is thought that the two became radicalised together. Moreover, Abrini’s younger brother Souleymane, 20, died in 2014 in Syria while fighting in the same ISIS military unit as Abaaoud, [sic]

      Yesterday, a family member at the Abrini property told MailOnline she was ‘in a state of shock’ in the aftermath of the latest atrocities, and feared that Abrini may have once again been involved.

      The tight-knit network doesn’t end there. A short distance from the Abdeslam and Abrini residences is the home of Ayoub El Khazzani, the terrorist who launched the botched gun and bomb attack on the Amsterdam-to-Paris express train in August last year.

      The close bond shared by the band of brothers sheds new light on the dangers threatening Europe, where the efforts of a small number of childhood friends can bring the continent to its knees.

    2. It also allows police to piece together the process by which they were radicalised, and identify which members of the cell were the linchpins and which were under their spell.

      Questions remain about how the gang of young men, all of whom were Belgian citizens, can have transformed into death-loving monsters, showing loyalty to each other but a profound hatred of their country and fellow citizens.

      Although Molenbeek is the gang’s centre of gravity, last night it emerged that Salah Abdeslam had moved his operations to Schaerbeek, a district of Brussels three miles away.

      It was there that the notorious bomb factory was located, where the El Bakraoui brothers prepared for Tuesday’s attacks.

      Ibrahim El Bakraoui, 30, carried out the airport bombing, and his younger brother Khalid, 27, blew himself up at Maelbeek Metro on Tuesday morning.

      The terror den, on the fifth floor of a dilapidated apartment block, was found to contain explosive materials and an ISIS flag.

      The killer brothers took a taxi to the scene of the attacks with a fourth suspected bomber, who remains at large.

      Also involved with the Brussels plot was ‘The Man in White’ Najim Laachraoui, who escaped from the airport blast and is still on the run. He too lived in Schaerbeek.

      The twisted Bakraoui brothers rented a flat in the Forest suburb of Brussels. Armed police raided the address on Tuesday and shot dead Algerian Mohamed Belkaid.

      MailOnline spoke to Mohammed Abdeslam, the prime suspect’s brother, outside the family home.

      The officers spoke at the scene of one of the police raids that took place in the district last night, near the Ahl Allah mosque….

      As police tried to control the throngs of young men of Middle Eastern and north African descent who had gathered to watch, they were mocked with hoots and chicken noises.

      Masked officers arrested at least three young men before order was restored.

      ‘There is no terrorist on this street. The police are making it up to make Muslims look bad,’ said 27-year-old Mohammed, surrounded by several other young men. ‘It is a set-up.’

      But Sofian, 27, said he was worried that the terror investigation in the district would give it a bad name.

      ‘It was just one or two people who happened to be living here,’ he said. ‘There are terror cells all over Brussels, not just in Schaerbeek.’

      Although Molenbeek has long had a reputation for radical Islamism, it is Schaerbeek that has been thrown into the spotlight in the latest stages of the investigation into the Brussels attacks.

      Just hours after a series of blasts killed 34 people in the capital and injured hundreds more, police found a nail bomb, chemicals and an ISIS flag in a raid on an apartment in the district….

      Najim Laachraoui, a newly-identified ISIS suspect whose DNA was found on bombs used in the Paris attacks, rented an apartment in Schaerbeek, and Paris terror suspect Salah Abdeslam is believed to have been holed up in an apartment there for three weeks after the massacres in France….

      Suspicions that Abdeslam also masterminded the Brussels atrocities arose when Belgian police found his fingerprints on detonators intended for use in the attacks, according to an anonymous source quoted by Politico.

      The latest revelations come after Belgium’s Foreign Minister, Didier Reynders, told a conference the day after Abdeslam’s arrest that the jihadi was ‘ready to restart something from Brussels’ using a new terror cell he had formed.

      ‘We found a lot of weapons, heavy weapons in the first investigations, and we have seen a new network of people around him in Brussels,’ he said.

      Today, MailOnline spoke to Mohammed Abdeslam, the prime suspect’s brother, outside the family home.

      ‘I can’t tell you if my brother was supposed to be involved in today’s attack because if I told you I knew, I’d be in very big trouble right now,’ he said before driving off in his black BMW 4X4….

      Jihad Watch

    3. Bob,

      It is amazing your complete incapacity to understand rational argument.

      You are simply a parrot.

    4. DougWed Mar 23, 06:04:00 PM EDT
      Doesn't Ash's chart's trend result from the history of the conflict in Northern Ireland ?

      ie, NOT from Muslim terrorism

      Agree, Ash?

    5. Yes Doug there are indeed many acts of terrorism committed by people who are NOT Muslim. The chart indicates that the current European death toll pales in comparison to the past.

    6. Ash, will you finally admit your are a moslem?

    7. Let's start with the terrorist attack on the King David hotel, followed by the murder of 252 Jewish refugees with the sinking of the "Patra" by the Zionist organization “Haganah”.


    8. Then we can move to the terrorist attack upon the USS Liberty, by the Israeli Defense Forces, which claimed 34 US lives

  6. Erdogan's my hero, Fuck Trump!

  7. Hillary on Twitter:

    "Let’s be clear: Islam is not our adversary. Muslims are peaceful and tolerant people and have nothing whatsoever to do with terrorism."


    According to the Israeli police, 25,000 cars are stolen every year in Israel, and most end up in Nablus. The stolen cars are easy to identify on the streets because they have an easily detectable imitation of a Palestinian Authority licence plate. They make up perhaps one in every three of the cars in Nablus.

  9. Hezbollah (pronounced /ˌhɛzbəˈlɑː/;[14][15] Arabic: حزب الله‎ Ḥizbu 'llāh, literally "Party of Allah" or "Party of God")—also transliterated Hizbullah, Hizballah, etc.[16]—is a Shi'a Islamist militant group and political party based in Lebanon.[17][18] Hezbollah's paramilitary wing is the Jihad Council,[19][20] and its political wing is Loyalty to the Resistance Bloc party in the Lebanese parliament. After the death of Abbas al-Musawi in 1992, the group has been headed by Hassan Nasrallah, its Secretary-General.

    These are Deuce's heroes

    1. You are stone cold ignorant about allies. Allies are not friends. It a a mutually parasitic relationship between two parties that benefit from the conditional relationship.

      Israel can be a “friend” to the US but it is less than worthless as an ally.

      Israel is not fighting ISIS. They are of no help to anyone. Israel is a political burden to the US. Israel can inflict great pain against someone that attacks it, but that is their limit. They cannot sustain battle outside of Israel. They are good at dominating disarmed subjugated people but have had their ass handed to them in their ventures outside of their core occupied areas.

      Hezbollah is not a friend, but they are a very useful ally in the cause against ISIS, as are the Russians and the Syrian army.

      Take your ignorance, prejudice and stupidity to your own blog. You will never learn anything here

  10. Highlights

    Indications from the jobless claims report are all lining up for another month of solid strength in the employment report. After having peaked in January near 280,000, initial claims have fallen back to the 260,000 area, at 265,000 in the March 19th week. The 4-week average, at 259,750, is trending slightly lower.

    Data for continuing claims lag by a week and the available latest week, March 12th was the sample week for the March employment report. Continuing claims fell 39,000 in the week to 2.179 million with the 4-week average at 2.207 million, which when compared with the sample week of the February employment report shows a sizable 34,000 improvement.

    Of special note! The latest reading for initial claims is the 55th straight under 300,000, the longest streak since 1973 when the workforce was by comparison much smaller. There are no special factors in today's report.

    Jobless Claims

  11. Ash,

    it is amazing your complete incapacity to understand rational argument.

    You are simply a parrot.

    1. "Juan Cole is asserting that we need the help of Muslims in order to defeat Islamic terrorism."

      Jihad Watch

      Exposing the role that Islamic jihad theology and ideology play in the modern global conflicts

      Belgian cops asked Muslims for help in finding jihad bombers and were ignored....

      What is it about this that is so hard for you to understand, Ash ?

      I am trying to show you that Juan Cole doesn't live in the real world.

      Hannity had some statistic from Britain showing that 80% of the moslems there were basically supportive of their right to blow stuff and people up.

      It may not be so bad in the USA yet, but you wait, my dear child.

      The police didn't seem to get any help from the moslems in Belgium.

    2. Ever been to Belgium or France, Robert "Draft Dodger" Peterson, and see how the Muslims are segregated from the rest of the population, there?

      Of course you haven't.

  12. Seems like the battle to retake Mosul may be beginning though details seem sketchy.

  13. Deuce
    When you accept that death is an ending and that there is no rebirth or afterlife, you are free to focus on the wonder of your own being and accept the temporary privilege and reward of life.

    The more I wonder at your statement, I realize the wisdom of this.
    For the downtrodden or displaced, it could be the driving force to break out. The reason to not except your station in life.
    To not wait & wait for thousands of years for a savior.

    1. But the spiritual things I've witnessed cannot be discarded by me.
      I'll take your advice and hold onto the faith that clings to me, and live another day.

      G_d willing ;)

    2. "you are free to focus on the wonder of your own being and accept the temporary privilege and reward of life"

      What reward of life ? For many people life is a pain in the arse. Many people start to focus on the absurdity of it all.

      I like doug saxum's way much better.



    3. Modern Pauline Christianity was invented to further subjugate the people dominated by the Roman Empire, Constantine was no fool.

  14. I think that "Mosul talk" is awfully preliminary. Right now, they seem to be fighting 30 or 40 miles from Mosul, itself. The Iraqi Defense Minister seems very skeptical about recapturing Mosul before Winter (at the earliest.)

    1. Just heard a report on Fox News, and I think you're right.

      Scratch my earlier comment.

  15. Trump seems to have plateaued out in Wisconsin and Pennsylvania.

  16. "Why Trump can beat Clinton

    Special to The Globe and Mail
    Published Wednesday, Mar. 23, 2016 3:04PM EDT

    Hillary Clinton is perhaps the best-qualified candidate for the American presidency since Thomas Jefferson and she will lose to Donald Trump in November. Few candidates have had her experience, knowledge and competence to be president, which is also one of the Achilles heels that will bring her down.

    Ms. Clinton has for years been among the bright stars in that political establishment that so many Americans blame for their poor fortunes. It’s these millions of disillusioned Americans who gave us Donald Trump and who almost gave Ms. Clinton Bernie Sanders. Can Ms. Clinton present herself as the person who understands their grievances and who can credibly promise to address them?

    In fact, the opposite argument is far more credible. Given her background and her network, it’s far more plausible to expect Ms. Clinton to administer a government dedicated to and run by the same Wall Street barons who ran her husband’s administration and who have since been so lavishly generous to the Clinton family foundation and to Ms. Clinton personally. It will be easy, if rather ironic, for Mr. Trump to argue that Ms. Clinton will be the president of the 1 per cent while he would be the president of the aggrieved workers.

    Besides any such line of attack, Mr. Trump in general is Ms. Clinton’s nemesis. Anyone who has watched her in those endless TV debates with Mr. Sanders has seen a brilliant debater, almost impossible to trap on any policy issue, but someone who is programmed right to her teeth. She is always ready for anything – except the unpredictable. Which is Mr. Trump’s middle name.

    No one ever knows what grotesque insult he will next pull out of his bag of wonders, which is precisely what will most rattle Ms. Clinton. She can’t prepare for him like she can prepare for a question about Bill Clinton’s philandering or the 2012 attack on the U.S. diplomatic compound in Benghazi, Libya, and this will make her vulnerable to Mr. Trump every time they face each other. She will be permanently flustered and prone to making costly gaffes.

    And if they’re not directly debating, you can be sure that reporters, many of whom openly dislike her, will happily repeat every new accusation from Mr. Trump.

    But for most of Mr. Trump’s craziness there is no reply at all. This will badly shake Ms. Clinton’s confidence and leave her vulnerable to the phenomenon of feral Trumpism, which he will instantly grasp and exploit.

    But Mr. Trump will not be alone in trying to undermine Ms. Clinton.

    1. First comes the Republican Party, and, broken as it by its own crackpot ideas and internal stresses, it remains a power in the land. We must never forget that the mediocrities who lost to Barack Obama still won more than 46 per cent of all the votes cast: Mitt Romney, John McCain-Sarah Palin! Despite everything, Mr. Trump is likely to get those same Republican votes, and won’t need many more to win.

      Second comes the real power in American political-economic life, a vast extremist right-wing conspiracy pervading every corner of the republic, as described by investigative journalist Jane Mayer in her powerful and deeply chilling new book, Dark Money: The Hidden History of the Billionaires Behind the Rise of the Radical Right. Featuring the reactionary oil barons Charles and David Koch and their fellow ultraconservative billionaires like Sheldon Adelson, this is a tale of how money hijacks democracy in the United States.

      Once the final act of the 2016 presidential campaign begins, their sole target will be Ms. Clinton. Despite her closeness to the 1 per cent, they hate her beyond explanation. Almost a billion dollars in advertising, social media, ground organizing and dirty tricks of every possible kind will be launched at her. She won’t know what hit her.

      And here’s the thing about Ms. Clinton: She is deeply vulnerable to such attacks. She has always attracted visceral and often irrational hostility. She is seen as too ambitious (which really means a woman with any ambition), inauthentic, programmed, opportunistic, dedicated only to her own success, forever politicking (which really means she’s a smart politician). Averaging the last 379 polls by 40 pollsters, 53.8 per cent of Americans give her an unfavourable rating, and only 41.5 per cent a favourable verdict. This is deeply humiliating for Ms. Clinton and potentially fatal for her chances.

      Indeed, from first to last over her 25 years in politics, with and without Bill, she has offered hostages to fortune, beginning perhaps with her joining Wal-Mart’s board while Bill was governor of Arkansas, where the company is based. Ever since, it has often seemed that Ms. Clinton, sometimes deliberately, has walked a fine line, as if she was looking for trouble, which she always has found. They trail nosily behind her like the tin cans on a wedding vehicle.

      The situation was summed up in a recent Politico magazine: “Those younger voters who doubt her trustworthiness likely have no memory, or even casual acquaintance with, a 25-year history that includes cattle-futures trading, law firm billing records, muddled sniper fire recollections and the countless other charges of widely varying credibility aimed at her.”

      “Countless other charges” is the key phrase here. These charges have never stopped from the moment she became a public figure, and if young Americans don’t recall them, you can be sure the Koch campaign will hammer them home until Hillary Clinton can stand no more, literally or figuratively.

      Of course, this all means that Donald Trump will be president. And if you can’t face that, just remember this: I’m not always right."

  17. .

    I agree with Jaun Cole about half the time, the times when he castigates the pols and policy makers of the right. But Cole is a political hack like others we see here that are wedded to the left. Ofttimes, the same idiocy he condemns on the right he let's slide or ignores from the left.

    He is politically driven and as such a prick.



    1. .

      Of course, he is dead on in the article above.


    2. In Quirk talk all politicians are dicks, all political writers pricks.

      One has to have read Quirk for years like I have to catch onto this distinction.

    3. .

      The only thing I would say about Cole's charge of Belgium culpability is that it misses the point. The real Muslim problem in Belgium started back in the late 1960's when Belgium’s King Baudouin who was looking for Saudi oil contracts sold out Belgium to the Saudis. He offered Saudi King Faisal property and permits to build a mosque in the capital. He also agreed to hire Gulf-trained clerics to preach there. The mosque became the only place for worship in the country for the cheap labor Belgium was bringing in from Morocco and Turkey.

      Thus the moderate Muslims from these countries were forced to go to the Great Mosque of Brussels and the Islamic and Cultural Centre of Belgium (ICC) where they were instructed in the radical Salafist philosophy and worldview of the Saudis. It would have been a miracle if a portion of them weren't radicalized.


    4. And there is a lesson for us here.

      Stop Moslem Immigration To USA Now !

    5. To fully understand Belgium, one must study their history of colonialism.

      Even our English Lit major, Robert "Draft Dodger" Peterson should be aware of it.

      Surely he has read "The Heart of Darkness".

      The real history of Belgium's attitude to 'foreigners' is even more dark than Joseph Conrad's story tells.

    6. The US should halt, immediately, all travelers from France and Belgium.
      None of those people can be considered 'risk free'.

      All air traffic should be turned back, now.
      It is the only thing that can keep US safe and secure.

    7. I see you know nothing whatsoever about "The Heart of Darkness", Dead Beat Dad.

      Your time would be much better spent working on your super secret project with the CIA, NSA and Defense off the coasts of Panama to protect us all.

      You don't realize what a fool you just made out of yourself.

      I'm going into town, the 'rat is back'.

    8. My cousin, Idaho Bob, confuses me with that retired blogger, 'Desert Rat', to bad for the 'ho Bob.

  18. So we should all just sit cross-legged on the floor in a circle, hold hands and sing Kumbaya, right?

    1. .

      Check back later. I have a meeting I have to be at in an hour and to address the level of bullshit that has been spewed here this moring will take a while.


    2. Nothing new here. It always take Quirk a long time to address the level of bullshit spewed here.

      HO HO HO ha ha ha

      "First we show the Poles, then everybody else"

      Beginning with Quirk.

      Ha Ha !!

  19. I'm gonna vote and protect myself by buying gold through Rosland Captital.

    I suggest you all do the same.

    Fox News reports that Iraqi troops are 70 miles from Mosul. Not going to be liberated tomorrow morning....

  20. As to what 'we' should be doing ...

    The US Congress should authorize the use of military force against the Islamic State, then the US should begin helping those already in the fight against it.

    Syrian government forces fought their way into Palmyra on Thursday as the army backed by Russian air cover sought to recapture the historic city from Islamic State


  21. In Syria and Iraq, the Islamic State is in retreat on multiple fronts

    In the latest setbacks for the militants on Thursday, Syrian government troops entered the outskirts of the historic town of Palmyra after a weeks-old offensive aided by Russian and U.S. airstrikes helped Iraqi forces overrun a string of Islamic State villages in northern Iraq that had been threatening a U.S. base nearby.

    These are just two of the many fronts in both countries where the militants are being squeezed, stretched and pushed back. Nowhere are they on the attack.
    They have not embarked on a successful offensive in nearly nine months.
    Their leaders are dying in U.S. strikes at the rate of one every three days, inhibiting their ability to launch attacks, according to U.S. military officials.

    Front-line commanders no longer speak of a scarily formidable foe but of defenses that crumble within days and fighters who flee at the first sign they are under attack.

    “They don’t fight. They just send car bombs and then run away. And when we surround them they either surrender or infiltrate themselves among the civilians,” said Lt. Gen. Abdul-Ghani al-Assadi, commander of Iraq’s counterterrorism forces, who is overseeing the latest Iraqi offensive to capture the town of Hit in the province of Anbar.


      “Their morale is shaken. We listen to them on their communications devices. Their leaders are begging them to fight, but they answer that it is a lost cause. They refuse to obey orders and run away.”


    2. Syrian forces helped by Russian strikes also have made gains around the Islamic State stronghold of Bab, east of Aleppo, and are making some inroads on the southwestern outskirts of Raqqa province. It is unlikely, but not implausible, that the Syrian army will reach Raqqa before U.S.-backed forces do, U.S. officials say.

      [How the battle against the Islamic State is redrawing the map of the Middle East]

      Most of the advances, however, are being made by the assortment of loosely allied forces, backed to varying degrees by the United States, that are ranged along the vast perimeter of the Islamic State’s territories. They include the Kurdish People’s Protection Units, or YPG, in northeastern Syria; the Kurdish peshmerga in northern Iraq; the Iraqi army, which has revived considerably since its disastrous collapse in 2014; and the Shiite militias, which are not directly aligned with the United States but are fighting on the same side.

      The U.S. military estimated earlier this year that the Islamic State had lost 40 percent of the territory it had controlled at its peak in 2014, a figure that excludes the most recent advances.

  22. You told us all that 'the rat doctrine' was gonna clean 'em all out of Iraq by last Memorial Day, 2015, Jack.

    You obviously don't know what the hell you are talking about, Jack.

    And, you don't pay your gambling debts, Jack, who doesn't pay his gambling debts.

    out for trip to town

    Cheers ! to all but Jack.

    1. "And, you don't pay your gambling debts, Jack, who doesn't pay his gambling debts' should read

      And, you don't pay your gambling debts, Jack, you don't pay your gambling debts.

      Cheers ! to all but Jack, who doesn't pay his gambling debts.

      Out for trip to town

    2. Please, if you could, Robert "Draft Dodger" Peterson, provide documentation concerning that supposed debt.

      I am sure you cannot.

      I am just as sure that when it comes to paying debts, you don't. By your own statements, made at the Elephant Bar, we know the truth of your character, or, better put, the lack thereof.

      Bob Thu May 27, 12:52:00 AM EDT

      But I did rip off the bank for $7500 hundred dollars, when I was on my knees, and fighting for my economic life, on my aunt's credit card. But that wasn't really stealing, just payback. After all, I had paid them nearly 20% interest for about three years.

      Let's see, 20% for three years, that'd be 60% of the principle.
      You are a self-acknowledged thief, Robert "Draft Dodger" Peterson, among you other character flaws.

    3. Oh, and where it ha ben implemented, the "Rat Doctrine" has been successful.
      The above post concerning the Islamic State losing 40% of their territory is verification of that reality, Robert "Draft Dodger" Peterson.


  23. What's wrong, Robert "Draft Dodger" Peterson, you and yours losing the fight?

    The Israeli have been caught funding the Islamic State through the purchase of 'Conflict Oil' and you just cannot stand to be reminded that the Islamic State is losing, without a substantial US contingent, on the ground?

    All your gods have clay feet, aye?


  24. Brussels Attack Lapses Acknowledged by Belgian Officials

    BRUSSELS — Belgium’s justice and interior ministers acknowledged Thursday that the authorities had erred by not acting on Turkey’s request last year that they take custody of a Belgian citizen arrested for suspected terrorist activity. The man was one of the Islamic State suicide bombers in the devastating Brussels attacks.

    The acknowledgments by the justice minister, Koen Geens, and interior minister, Jan Jambon, were the first high-level Belgian admissions of blunder in the aftermath of the bombings on Tuesday. The attacks have exposed missteps by European security officials and police, just four months after the Islamic State’s assault on targets in Paris.

    “What’s essential in the story is that with the passing on of the information from Turkey and with the passing on of the information within Belgium, we have been slower than one could have expected under those circumstances,” Mr. Geens said on Flemish television in Belgium. “So, the information was passed on, but we have not been diligent, or probably not diligent enough.”

    Mr. Jambon told the newspaper Le Soir that there had been “two types of mistakes, at the level of the Justice Ministry and at the level of the liaison officer in Turkey, which involves the Interior and Justice ministries.”


    1. Both the Paris and Brussels assailants appeared to have shared a bomb maker, Najim Laachraoui, 24, a Belgian ...

    2. The other terrorist captured, prior to the Brussels attack

      Mr. Salah Abdeslam, 26, a Belgian-born French citizen ...

      Robert Fudd may be on to something, the US may just have to isolate itself from Europe, in the interests of staying safe and secure.

    3. That's real dumb.

      Just ban the Moslems.


    4. How can you tell that a person is a Muslim, Donald?


    5. What special characteristics do they all have, that others, say Jews, do not?

  25. Pennsylvania Poll (Franklin and Marshall) has Clinton beating Trump by 13 and Cruz by 12.


    1. Just wait for the real campaign to start, and then those numbers may shift ...

      One way, or another.

      Amazes me that so many people would want a Canadian to be President of the United States.
      We really are becoming a 'Third World' country.

    2. ---Just wait for the real campaign to start, and then those numbers may shift ...

      One way, or another.---

      Wow what politics insight.



    3. Glad to be of service, Donald.
      Welcome to the Elephant Bar, seems you are as functionally illiterate as Robert "Draft Dodger" Peterson.


  26. Iraq launches operation to pave way for Mosul assault

    BAGHDAD - The Iraqi military backed by U.S.-led coalition aircraft on Thursday launched a long-awaited operation to recapture the northern city of Mosul from ISIS militants, a military spokesman said.

    In the push, Iraqi forces retook several villages on the outskirts of the town of Makhmour, east of Mosul, early in the morning on Thursday ...

    Indeed, a senior U.S. military official told CBS News that Thursday's advance was a "small operation to liberate some villages near Makhmour and push the foreign line of troops west." A commander of the Kurdish Peshmerga forces characterized the operation in the same way.

    Four brigades, or roughly 12,000 troops, will be needed before the offensive officially gets underway, the U.S. official said. Other officials estimate that an eight to 12 brigades, or an estimated 24,000 to 36,000 troops, will be needed for the Mosul operation. Currently, Iraq has just two brigades in Makhmour.

    According to an official at the military's provincial Nineveh Operations Command, the aim of the first phase of the Mosul offensive was to clear the areas between Makmour and the adjacent Qayara area to the east of the Tigris River, and to cut one of the supply lines to the nearby Shirqat area. The official spoke on condition of anonymity as he was not authorized to talk to the media.

  27. Strikes in Syria

    Attack, fighter, ground-attack and remotely piloted aircraft conducted eight strikes in Syria:

    -- Near Hawl, two strikes destroyed two ISIL fighting positions and an ISIL vehicle.

    -- Near Manbij, four strikes struck two separate ISIL tactical units and destroyed four ISIL fighting positions and an ISIL mortar position.

    -- Near Mara, a strike destroyed three ISIL fighting positions.

    -- Near Palmyra, a strike struck an ISIL tactical unit and destroyed an ISIL fighting position.

    Strikes in Iraq

    Attack, fighter and remotely piloted aircraft and rocket artillery conducted 26 strikes in Iraq, coordinated with and in support of Iraq’s government:

    -- Near Hit, three strikes struck an ISIL weapons storage facility and an ISIL tactical unit and destroyed an ISIL rocket rail and five ISIL bunkers.

    -- Near Kirkuk, a strike struck a large ISIL tactical unit and destroyed two ISIL vehicles, an ISIL command and control node and an ISIL weapons cache.

    -- Near Kisik, a strike destroyed an ISIL tunnel.

    -- Near Mosul, eight strikes struck four separate ISIL tactical units and destroyed two ISIL vehicles, an ISIL vehicle bomb and six ISIL assembly areas and suppressed an ISIL mortar position.

    -- Near Qayyarah, three strikes struck an ISIL communication facility, destroyed an ISIL-used bridge section and denied ISIL access to terrain.

    -- Near Ramadi, a strike denied ISIL access to terrain.

    -- Near Sinjar, five strikes struck five ISIL tactical units and destroyed an ISIL vehicle and four ISIL assembly areas.

    -- Near Sultan Abdallah, two strikes struck an ISIL tactical unit, destroyed an ISIL mortar position and denied ISIL access to terrain.

    -- Near Tal Afar, two strikes destroyed an ISIL assembly area and suppressed an ISIL mortar position.

    -- Near Hit, a strike destroyed two ISIL staging areas and two ISIL supply caches.

    1. Seems that all of those 'inconsequential' attacks upon vehicles, sleeping and staging areas, in support of the local forces fighting the Islamic State have certainly helped.

      The Islamic State now controlling 40% less territory than it did at its apex.

  28. While others live in fear of what is happening, in Europe, they ignore, totally what is happening here, in the United States ...

    It would be funny, if it were not so sad.

    The subsequent burning of the body to destroy evidence, as well as the burning of the victims truck, suggest concealing a pre-mediated crime, not a robbery, as the truck was burned, rather then sold, or taken across the border. Also, as noted, the accomplice suggests a group enterprise organized crime killing. The burning of the body and car are trade-craft, learned or taught methods of concealment.

    The killing of Adriana, brutal as it is, shows no sign of a personal crime, robbery, child abduction, or a sexual assault gone wrong. It is a straight execution killing, multiple gun shots, and coldly left in a field, where temperatures likely reach freezing at night. She was likely killed as she was a material witness to her fathers killing and kidnapping. Everything seems to indicate a targeted execution type killing, which brings us to Houston, Texas, where Los Zetas and elements of the Gulf Cartel are the main faces of drug trafficking.

  29. Jack is so afraid of a few terrorists he want to isolate all Europeans.

    Easy to just ban Moslems like The Donald says.

    Jack can't think.


    1. How can you tell that a person is a Muslim, Donald?

      What special characteristics do they all have, that others, say Hindus, do not?


    2. When and how did you develop the ability to see a soul?

      How can we institutionalize the process so the TSA can use it?

    3. If the answer the Donald has is to limit entrance to the US, how can that be done, effectively, other than by a total ban on everyone?

      How can you tell that a person is a Muslim?

      Especially if they deny it, like "O"rdure does.


    4. Come on, Donald, what is the criteria that the TSA should use to determine a travelers religion?


    5. Pat Robertson, founder of the Christian Broadcasting Network (CBN) offered some interesting advice to a viewer named Mohammad, who wrote in with a qualm in the Sept. 7 airing of Robertson's show, "The 700 Club," about fellow Christians reacting negatively to his name.

      "I have a problem: I find it difficult to tell people my name at restaurants and coffee shops," Mohammad wrote in.

      "The minute they hear my name, I'm treated as a foreigner and a terrorist. I am a Christian, and it's hard because it seems like some of the harshest vitriol directed towards me comes from Christians. What do you suggest?


  30. Passport and names and area of departure and other stuff, Jack.

    That get most of them.

    Damn you dumb.

    1. Passports denote the country a person is from, not their religion, Donald.

      Guess you never had a passport, aye?

      As for names, see above.

    2. As for area of departure ...

      That would be France or Belgium, right?

    3. You really are as functionally illiterate as Robert "Draft Dodger" Peterson.


    4. How can the TSA look at a person and KNOW that person is a Muslim, not a Sikh


    5. India has a very large Muslim population, should the US ban Indians entry to the US, because of the threat they may pose?


    6. Skin color, that won't do it.
      Country of origin, nope, there are plenty of Christians in Syria that would like to come to the US.

      Countries can be used to ban entry, but how can a TSA official see the travelers soul, to recognize that person's true religion?

    7. Egypt, also, has a large Christian population.

    8. Lots of brown Christians in the world, aren't there?

      How can you recognize a Muslim that is trying to hide the fact that they are a Muslim, which a terrorist trying to enter the US would do?

    9. The 9/11 attackers did not act "Islamic" prior to the hijackings ...

      I recall the reports that they were in a 'Titty Bar', in Florida, drinking and carousing before heading to Boston...

      So behavior won't identify the terrorists, either.

  31. To be safe, would not the US have to build giant walls and close its borders to countries where there are Muslims?

    France, Belgium, Sweden, England all come to mind.
    Even Israel has millions of Muslims living there.


  32. The US could ban travelers from Saudi Arabia, fer sure, but what of an Indian who has traveled to Saudi Arabia, should they be banned?

    That Customs inspectors often do deny entry to the US of people that have traveled in the Middle East is already documented, they do it through geography, not religion.

    Suspicious feds turn back many foreigners at airport

    After a 15-hour flight from Manila, Carina Grande landed at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport this month with plans to visit her grandson in Everett before the two left for her daughter’s wedding in California.

    She never set foot outside the airport.

    After a nearly six-hour interview in a small room there, the Philippines native, who had been coming to the U.S. for decades, was denied entry, her visitor’s visa was revoked and she was sent home on the next flight after authorities concluded her intentions were not what she claimed.

    It’s a scene repeated at U.S. airports every day as international visitors find themselves unable to overcome a major presumption in immigration policy: that arriving foreigners intend to stay, unless able to demonstrate otherwise.

    “Citizens have no idea the scope of questioning and probing CBP can conduct against anyone — including spouses of U.S. citizens,” said Seattle immigration attorney Robert Gibbs.

    He was referring to a recent case involving the German wife of a U.S. veteran (the two had been living for years in Germany) who was denied entry when she admitted the couple might look into getting her a green card while they were here.

    Separated from her husband at Sea-Tac, she spent the night at the Tacoma detention center and was sent home the next day.

    “It’s tricky to explain intent …” Gibbs said. “You may have a wish or a hope … but if you have intent or a plan and that’s what the officer thinks, that becomes a problem.”

    Home country matters

    The U.S. allows citizens from most European countries, and others such as Japan, Australia and South Korea, to travel to the United States for business or pleasure on a passport issued by their home countries.

    The Federals just have to add France, Belgium, Sweden, England etc. to the list, especially if security is paramount to all other concerns.

  33. Leading From Behind:


  34. The customs officer walked by and asked everybody on the train a few questions. Where they were from, where they were heading. The usual stuff. Everybody who was not a U.S. or Canadian citizen was to head for the dining car to fill in an additional green form.

    In the dining car sat a cheerful looking family from the Middle East and a German man with a mouth in which a small frisbee could easily be inserted. I took the seat across the German, who had already filled in his green paper, and started on my own, dedicated, hoping to impress him. He was not throwing me friendly looks. The customs officer took the German’s papers and welcomed him to America. They switched seats. He put his hands on the table and looked at me. We must have been of similar ages. He had a goatee and slid my passport towards him like it was a small gift.

    I had not finished my novel yet, but my passport was complete. It was filled with pretty stamps. He did not like the stamps.

    First, he saw my Sri Lankan stamp. The customs officer raised his eyebrows.

    “Sri Lanka, what were you doing over there?”

    “Surfing. Traveling. My best friend lives there. He is an architect.”

    The officer flipped on, seemingly satisfied. Secondly, he found my stamps from Singapore and Malaysia.

    “What were you doing over there? Singapore and Malaysia? Aren’t those countries Islamic?”

    Looking over my shoulder, his eyes searched for his colleague’s confirmation.

    “Malaysia, I think so, yeah. But not Singapore. It’s a melting pot. A very futuristic city. Airconditioned to the ceiling. To Singapore I went mostly for the food, to be honest.”


    “I’m sorry?”

    “Nothing. And how about Malaysia?”

    I explained flights departing from Malaysia were cheaper compared to Singapore. That I only went there for a few days, but also, a little bit, for the food. The customs officer went through some more pages. Then he found my Yemeni visa. He put my passport down and stared at me.

    “What the hell were you doing in Yemen?”

    “I went to the island Socotra, it’s not on mainland Yemen. It’s a small island closer to Somalia. A very special place, some call it ‘Galapagos of the Middle East.’ I think 85 percent of the plants and animals there, are indigenous.”

    “Weren’t you scared?”

    “Yeah. I was scared. When I was at the airport in mainland Yemen. That entire area is now taken by al Qaeda, I believe.”

    The customs officer was looking at my passport no longer. If he would have leafed through, he would have found Sharjah, Dubai and Abu Dhabi stamps.

    That was the first time I had to open my suitcase. Six customs officers went through my two phones, iPad, laptop and camera. In my wallet they found an SD card I had totally forgotten about. They did not like that. By now I was the only one left in the dining car and the center of attention. I had put a raincoat in my suitcase, because I’d heard New Orleans tends to get hit by thunderstorms in the late summer. An officer held up the coat and barked:

    “Who takes a coat to the U.S. in the summer?”

    I answered it would keep me dry, in case the New Orleans levees would break again. The officer remained silent. He dropped my coat like a dishcloth.

    The raincoat seemed to be the last straw. The customs officers exchanged looks.

    “We’d like to ask you some more questions. But the train has to continue, so we’re going to take you off here.”

    I looked out of the window. We weren’t at a proper station. Along the tracks were piles of old pallets.

    “Will you put me on another train, afterwards?”

    “This is the only train. But in case we decide to let you in, we’ll put you on a bus. Don’t worry.”

    The fellow was denied entry to the US, and he was not even Muslim, or so he claims ...


  35. U.S. Frustration Simmers Over Belgium’s Struggle With Militant Threat

    Concern over the small European nation’s ability to handle its worsening Islamic militant threat came to the fore following Tuesday’s ISIS attack.

    WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Shortly after last November’s attacks on Paris by a Brussels-based Islamic State cell, a top U.S. counter-terrorism official traveling in Europe wanted to visit Brussels to learn more about the investigation.

    When the official tried to arrange meetings, however, his Belgian counterparts were not welcoming, according to U.S. officials familiar with the events. The Belgians indicated it was a bad time to speak to foreign officials as they were too busy with the investigation, said the officials, who asked not to be identified.

    Belgian officials declined to comment on the incident.

    The brush-off was one small sign of mounting U.S. frustration over Brussels’ handling of its worsening Islamic militant threat.

    Concern that the small European nation’s security and intelligence officials are overwhelmed — and that its coordination with allies falls short — have again come to the fore following the Islamic State-claimed attacks on Tuesday that killed at least 31 people.

    Several U.S. officials say that security cooperation has been hampered by patchy intelligence-sharing by Brussels and wide differences in the willingness of different agencies to work with foreign countries, even close allies.

    One U.S. government source said that when American investigators try to contact Belgian agencies for information, they often struggle to find which agency or part of an agency might have relevant information.

    Two brothers who participated in the attacks in Brussels were known to U.S. government agencies before Tuesday, according to two sources familiar with the matter.

    The sources said that Khalid El Bakraoui and Brahim El Bakraoui were both on U.S. government counter-terrorism watch lists before the attacks.

    1. Belgium has ordered a sharp increase in security budgets following the Paris attacks, despite being under steady pressure to limit its debt levels under euro zone rules. The government has promised to recruit around 2,500 more federal police, who pursue major crimes, to make up for a shortfall of close to a fifth of the full-strength force of 12,500.

      It also says it thwarted a major attack in January 2015, and is eager to cooperate with European and U.S. counterparts.

      “These attacks show that more coordination with the United States is clearly desirable,” Guy Rapaille, the president of the committee that provides oversight of Belgium’s security and intelligence services, told Belgium’s state broadcaster RTBF.

      “But you have to remember that . . . . . . . . .

      Not very good

  36. Rose Colored Rufus:
    Everything's Groovy.

    The Clintons - Not so much:

    Chelsea Clinton tells a crowd that her mother, Hillary Clinton, is open to using executive action to reduce "crushing costs" of Obamacare.

    "...cap on out of pocket expenses. This was part of my mom's original plan back in '93 and '94, as well as premium costs. We can either do that directly or through tax credits. And, kind of figuring out whether she could do that through executive action, or she would need to do that through tax credits working with Congress. She thinks either of those will help solve the challenge of kind of the crushing costs that still exist for too many people, who even are part of the Affordable Care Act and buying insurance..."

    In December, Hillary admitted Obamacare turns full-time jobs into part-time jobs.


    1. How do you like your Government (and, Rufus) paid for Medicare?

    2. If you will go here

      Employment Situation - Feb. 2010

      and, here

      Employment Situation - Feb. 2016

      You will see that since Feb. 2010, we have an increase of 12,433,000 Jobs,

      and a Decrease of 2,803,000 "Part time for economic reasons" jobs.

    3. Perhaps, you'd rather talk about George Bush's "Jobs Creating" record?

  37. Joint Forces cross to Qayyarah District backed by US Marines artillery

    ( Nineveh – A security source announced on Thursday, that the joint security forces crossed from Makhmur District to Qayyarah south of Mosul using floating bridge on Tigris River, while emphasized that the US Marines artillery shelled ISIS headquarters near Qayyarah.

    The source said in a statement obtained by, “The joint forces from the Iraqi Army, tribal fighters, Peshmerga and Federal Police crossed from Makhmur to Qayyarah, using a floating bridge on Tigris River,” pointing out that, “ISIS destroyed the bridge linking between the district and Qayyarah during the previous period.”

    The source, who asked anonymity, added, “The joint forces managed to cross to the other side without any confrontation against ISIS fighters,” noting that, “The artillery of the US Marines that were stationed in Makhmur participated in the operation and heavily shelled Qayyarah.”


    1. 15 ISIS militants killed in security operation targeted post office in Qayyarah

      ( Nineveh – A source in Nineveh Province announced on Thursday, that 15 ISIS members were killed in a security operation targeted the post office building in Qayyarah south of Mosul, while pointed out that the military troops are preparing to liberate a number of villages in the district.

      The source reported for, “The joint forces killed 15 ISIS fighters during a security operation targeted the post office building in Qayyarah,” pointing out that, “The post office headquarters was controlled by ISIS members.”

      The source, who requested anonymity, added, “The security forces are preparing to liberate the villages of al-Mahnanh and Sultan Abdullah east of Qayyarah, after liberating eight villages south of Mosul.”

      Earlier today the commander of Nineveh Liberation Operations Major General Najm al-Din al-Jubouri announced the liberation of eight villages in the vicinity of Qayyarah south of Mosul, while pointed out that the military operations were conducted based on an accurate plan to liberate the city of Mosul.

      You Got Mail

    2. Hello,

      Marine deployment to Iraq fire base first of its kind: US military

      About 200 US Marines have established an artillery position in northern Iraq, the US military said Monday -- a first-of-its-kind deployment whose existence was revealed only after one of the Marines was killed in a rocket attack.

      The marine, Staff Sergeant Louis Cardin, was killed Saturday in an Islamic State rocket attack on the fire base that wounded several others.

      US President Barack Obama acknowledged Cardin's death on Monday at a press conference in Havana with Cuban President Raul Castro, saying his thoughts and prayers were with his family.

      "It's a reminder that even as we embark on this historic visit, there are US armed service members who are sacrificing each and every day on behalf of our freedom and our safety," he said.

      The death also pointed to a deepening US ground troop involvement in the fight against the Islamic State group.

      While US warplanes launch daily strikes against IS positions in Iraq, the estimated 3,900 US troops in the country are officially in a supporting role training and advising Iraqi troops.

      With the exception of raids by US special operations forces, the US troops have until now not been directly involved in combat.

      But Cardin's death prompted the Pentagon to disclose that he was engaged in providing fire support from a "recently established coalition fire base near Makhmur in northern Iraq."

      On Monday, a US military spokesman acknowledged that the Marines established "Fire Base Bell" two weeks ago, deploying the equivalent of a company with "four guns."

      Colonel Steve Warren, the Baghdad-based military spokesman, said the Marines were there to provide "force protection" for several thousand Iraqi troops at Makhmur.

      US military advisers are accompanying the Iraqis as they prepare for an offensive on the IS-held city of Mosul.

      "This is the first time we have established a spot that is only American," he said, adding that it was several hundred meters (yards) from an Iraqi base.

      Obama had promised at the start of the US-led offensive against the IS group that he would not send US ground troops to fight the jihadists.

      But the slow progress in retaking lands captured by IS fighters has pushed Washington to go further, allowing special operations forces to carry out targeted raids and military advisers to get nearer to the fighting.

      The Marines and the military advisers with Iraq's 15th Division are less than twenty kilometers (12 miles) from the front line, according to Warren.

      Boom, Boom, Assholes

    3. Evidently, the Iraqis don't have Any artillery. Jeez.

      It's hard to wrap one's head around just how close to zero these guys were after ISIS swept through them.

    4. You see, this is what pisses me off: We spent (and, are still spending) all that money to help the Israelis build, and deploy, that Iron Dome,

      and our own Marine Artillery Company is sitting out there in the middle of Indian Country, in a hot war zone, bare-assed naked to an enemy rocket attack.

      And, people wonder why ex-Marines drink so much.

  38. Adult babies at Emory seek protection from “Trump 2016” chalkings on campus

    posted at 8:01 pm on March 24, 2016 by Allahpundit

    Where were you the night they chalked Emory U with a message that’s been airing constantly on American cable news since June 2015?

    Eventually lefty activists are going to figure out a way to protest Trump without overreacting in a way that doesn’t obviously redound to his benefit. But between this and disrupting his Chicago rally a few weeks ago, they ain’t found it yet. If you want to stop the guy who’s winning by hollering that America’s too soft and politically correct, the obvious thing to do is demand protection from your local authorities from the very idea of his candidacy:

    Students at Monday’s protest chanted, “You are not listening! Come speak to us, we are in pain!” shortly before [Emory President Jim] Wagner agreed to meet with them, Emory’s student newspaper, The Wheel, reported.

    Slogans such as “Trump 2016” were written in chalk on campus sidewalks and some buildings sometime during the weekend. At least one of the chalk messages stated “Build a wall,” said one of the students at the protest, Jonathan Peraza, 19, who said he is of Latino heritage and went to high school in suburban Atlanta.

    “That is a direct reference to brown people on campus,” Peraza told The Associated Press Wednesday, adding that “we feel unsafe on our campus.”

    Naturally Wagner sent out a letter after the meeting insisting that he felt their pain because that’s the rational way to deal with a fledgling campus protest movement. Humor it quickly and modestly and hope that it goes away satisfied. Resisting it will be treated as a challenge to the ultimate authority of leftist orthodoxy over campus life and that invites a test of strength. Wagner did the “right” thing, if rightness means snuffing a would-be crisis before it could get rolling. And yes, via Ace, it’s apparently true that he promised to take action against whoever was responsible for the chalkings — if, that is, the perpetrator was from off-campus. Emory said in a statement to WaPo that students have the right to express their political views with chalkings, albeit only in certain parts of campus and so long as they don’t deface any property. If the person responsible isn’t a student then they can nab him for trespassing. It’s not the pro-Trump viewpoint that the university is concerned about — supposedly — in other words but the violation of time/place/manner rules regarding political expression. Good luck enforcing that against campus liberals who feel moved to scratch out their love for Bernie Sanders or BLM whenever and wherever they’re moved to do so.

    1. This line, from the Emory Latino Student Organization statement on the chalkings that was republished by WaPo, made me laugh:

      Yesterday, the Emory community was witness to an act of cowardice, when someone decided to plaster pro-Donald Trump slogans all over campus. The people who did this knew that what they were doing was wrong, because why else would they do so in the dead of night when no one else could witness them? They did not do this merely to support the presidential candidate, but to promote the hate and discrimination that goes along with him. While some students only see the name of a potential nominee, others see hostility and venom which promises to destroy lives.

      Is that right? Can anyone think of a reason why someone inclined to express a right-wing nationalist viewpoint on an American college campuses might want to do so anonymously besides “they knew what they were doing was wrong”? Hint: It might have something to do with what I said about who the ultimate authority on campus is. That’ll never fail to be the most ridiculous thing about these “safe space” eruptions against speech that isn’t impeccably progressive. When all the political and institutional power is on one side of the ideological scale, whose safety is really at risk? The chalker’s or his audience’s?

      The best argument you can make against the chalking, I think, is that it was less a genuine expression of support for Trump than a form of trolling the campus hivemind. What’s the most politically incorrect, incendiary thing you could write on the ground at a university and not risk real trouble for it, as you might if, say, you displayed a Confederate flag? “Trump 2016” is a pretty good bet. Maybe the responsible party was simply trying to provoke. But even if he was, so what? The “safe space” mentality invites that. Ninety percent of the reason Trump’s fans will defend their guy no matter what boorish thing he says, I suspect, is because he’s doing an ace job of invading the political class’s safe space. They don’t get to hide from it. Why should Emory’s snowflakes?


    3. Seems your ideological compatriot, Donald, is as little traveled as you, Robert "Draft Dodger" Peterson. Having no idea of the information, or lack thereof, on a passport.

      Now that most of Europe is "Visa Free" for travel to the US, the only way to stop those pesky Moslems from entering the US is to shut down all of the traffic coming from Europe, or some blond, blue eyed Moslems may make it to Idaho.

      We won't want that, would we?
      And travelers from India, they will have to be turned back, as well.

      All in an effort to keep Robert "Draft Dodger" Peterson and the other Xenophobes from being afraid.

  39. {....}

    The biggest constraints on further military advances now are largely political, U.S. officials say. Progress on important fronts such as reconciliation in Iraq and diplomatic efforts to end the war in Syria are not keeping pace with the advances on the battlefield, stalling plans to take the fight to the Islamic State’s most vital strongholds.

    Plans for an operation to capture Raqqa, the de facto capital of the Islamic State’s self-styled caliphate, are on hold because of tensions between Kurds and Arabs over who would participate and how to govern the city after it has been taken. The YPG has declared a breakaway federal region that does not include Raqqa, while U.S. plans to train and equip an Arab force to fight for the town are lagging.

    Likewise, preparations for an offensive for Mosul, the biggest city under Islamic State control, are being held up by disputes over who should take part and how to govern the northern Iraqi city after it falls. The powerful Shiite militias, credited with making many of the earliest gains, are insisting they be given a role, over objections from the U.S. military and the Iraqi Kurdish peshmerga.

    “We could probably liberate Mosul tomorrow, but we would have a real mess on our hands if we did,” said Michael Knights of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy. “A lot of work needs to be done to ensure an orderly transition of power in Mosul.”

    The Iraqi army described Thursday’s operation outside the northern Nineveh province town of Makhmour as the start of the Mosul offensive. U.S. and Kurdish officials, however, said it was a far more limited operation, to drive the Islamic State out of a string of villages that have been threatening U.S., Iraqi and Kurdish peshmerga troops based in the town. A U.S. Marine based in Makhmour died in rocket fire last Saturday.

    An Iraqi army officer in Makhmour, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to talk to reporters, said troops encountered little resistance, overrunning five mostly empty villages ahead of retreating militant fighters.

    The Islamic State continues to defend when it is attacked and shows no sign that it is losing cohesion in its core territories — but it is starting to become possible to foresee the group’s ultimate defeat, said Knights, who thinks that could come by the end of next year.

    “They are starting to fall apart,” he said. “They’re a small movement. If you bring them under pressure on half a dozen battlefields at the same time, they can’t do it.”

    Wash Post


    1. If you bring them under pressure on half a dozen battlefields at the same time, they can’t do it.”

      That sentiment has been expressed by two of us, amigo.

      Robert "Draft Dodger" Peterson not being one of us.
      He was sure that defeating the Islamic State would take another US invasion of Iraq.

      Reality being what it is, he and his ilk are being proved wrong.

      The two of us, we were a tad optimistic with the timeline, but the final outcome, it was never in doubt.


  40. “Thank you for explaining in your article how SodaStream generously provided work for Palestinians (Waikato Times, November 26). I understand that IG Farben provided work for large numbers of Jews. Not that I have anything against Germans, mind you,” Poynting wrote.


  41. The Shooting in Hebron Was a Cold-blooded Execution

    The public atmosphere in Israel being what it is, a cold-blooded execution should come as no surprise. Politicians and rabbis are repeatedly calling on soldiers to kill terrorists without thinking too much about it.

    read more:


    1. The Shooting in Hebron Was a Cold-blooded Execution

      The public atmosphere in Israel being what it is, a cold-blooded execution should come as no surprise. Politicians and rabbis are repeatedly calling on soldiers to kill terrorists without thinking too much about it.

      The video shows one of the soldiers, wearing a helmet, speaking to the soldier next to him. The second soldier shoots the prone terrorist in the head at very close range. No one standing around seemed particularly alarmed by what they had just seen. A car and an ambulance maneuver so as not to run over the body of the dead Palestinian. The camera focuses on the head, blood gushing out and running down the road.

      The camera shows us relatively rare and comprehensive footage of the incident, which does not leave much room for conflicting interpretations. It’s all there: the indifference toward the fate of the injured enemy, even though the rules of war require he be treated the moment he no longer presents a danger; the shooting of the Palestinian lying helpless on the ground, in utter contradiction to the values of the Israel Defense Forces; and the Israelis at the scene watching with complete apathy.


    2. To what extent is this incident unusual in Hebron? Palestinian witnesses have said that since the beginning of the current intifada the IDF and rescue services methodically refrain from treating wounded terrorists. They say treatment is given, if at all, much later, by which time many of the assailants have died. There are also numerous complaints of executions by shooting at point blank range.

      In many of the videos of these incidents the soldiers and police can be seen to have acted to thwart a clear and present danger. There are also other cases – the killing of the girl with the scissors in Jerusalem’s Mahane Yehuda market, who was shot by a policeman; the fatal beating by civilians and an Israel Prisons Service officer of an African citizen who was mistakenly thought to be a terrorist in a shooting attack in Be’er Sheva. In those cases it was clear that excessive force had been used.

      In many other cases, we simply don’t know. There are no cameras, and it seems that the army is not going out of its way to investigate what it does not know.

      A month ago IDF Chief of Staff Gadi Eisenkot mentioned the case of the girl with the scissors to warn against unnecessary shooting, and was roundly criticized by ministers, MKs and rabbis. Now it is even clearer why Eisenkot was alarmed.

  42. There's something really wrong with you, rat"



    1. bobal Fri Mar 20, 06:03:00 PM EDT
      Trish always was a syphilitic slut

      You disrespected Trish with the 'syphilitic slut' comment, now you want to make up and attribute a quote to her, one that you cannot reference in time or space ...

      You really are quite the misogynist, aren't you, Robert "Draft Dodger" Peterson?

  43. The person who has a mental problem, that's Robert "Draft Dodger" Peterson ...

    A self-acknowledged thief, who continues to post his desire for US citizens to die, in bombings and shootings ... You ought to be ashamed, Robert "Draft dodger" Peterson, but we all know that you are beyond shame.

    Idaho Bob Thu Jan 14, 05:57:00 PM EST
    I'm for carpet bombing Detroit and environs as a necessary precursor to urban renewal.

    "To destroy is to create" saith the Lord of Hosts and Urban Renewal.


    1. Bob
      Sun Feb 23, 10:56:00 PM EST
      "The argument that they are not native is amazing in light of the fact that neither are Europeans native."


      Shoot the Arizonans as well, give the meat to the poor.

      There is really something wrong with you, Robert "Draft Dodger" Peterson.


    2. Mass murder and cannibalism are not the stuff of mirth, Robert "Draft Dodger" Peterson

      They are the mutterings of a sick and perverted mind, one that must be called out and shown to the world, for what it is, diseased.