Category Archives: Military

Weaponized Consensus by the Collective Establishes Counterfeit Premises to Control Contrived Contingencies, by Doug “Uncola” Lynn

Don’t let the long title and alliteration scare you away. This a good look at how evil people are seeping intellectual rot into the system. From Doug “Uncola” Lynn at theburningplatform.com:

But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived.

– 2 Timothy 3:13

 They are like chaff that the wind blows away.

– Psalm 1: 4

Many years ago I read a book entitled “People of the Lie”  written by Scott Peck, an American psychiatrist.  It was a fascinating analytic study of malignant narcissism and deceit. I came away from the book with an understanding that a very significant percentage, if not the majority, of people in the world are not decent.

Other conceptualizations presented by Peck in “People of the Lie”included disguise as a main motive of evil, along with descriptions of people assessed as such to being self-deluded, as projecting their own actions onto others, as utilizing the pretense of love to actually hate, and as possessing an inherent intolerance to withstand criticism.  The author further identified evil as the opposition to life; even acknowledging the word “evil” aslive” spelled backwards.  Dr. Peck also claimed evil could be measured by its consistency and conceded that decent individuals have difficulty in cognitively processing the concept:

[Erich] Fromm saw the genesis of human evil as a developmental process; we are not created evil or forced to be evil, but we become evil slowly over time through a long series of choices.

When confronted by evil, the wisest and most secure adult will usually experience confusion.

– Peck, Scott.  (1983, 1988). “People of the Lie: The Hope for Healing Human Evil”; Century Hutchinson.

Peck also illustrated evil as more than the mere absence of good but, instead, as being overtly hateful and destructive. In other words, evil can manifest either by contingent circumstance or design.  More often than not, however, it is the latter; evil happens on purpose. Furthermore, although the banality of evil is evident throughout history, it often materializes in the cult of personality; or, stated another way, institutionalized by way of The Collective.

The Canadian psychology professor, Jordan Peterson, is a modern intellectual warrior who daily combats the pervading cultural orthodoxies of political correctness.  In a recent interview, he stated something to similar to this:

If you live in the post-modernist world, there is no truth; just victory and power games.

To continue reading: Weaponized Consensus by the Collective Establishes Counterfeit Premises to Control Contrived Contingencies

 

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Time to Admit the Afghan War is ‘Nonsense’, by Jonathan Marshall

After 17 years in Afghanistan, with Taliban control of territory and opium poppy production at record highs, it’s time for the US government to rethink that military commitment. From Jonathan Marshall at consortiumnews.com:

Exclusive: Officially, the U.S. military objective in Afghanistan is to force the Taliban to the negotiating table, but just last month President Trump said that talks with the Taliban are off the table, indicating an incoherent policy, as Jonathan Marshall notes.

Whatever happened to the Donald Trump who tweeted in 2013, “Let’s get out of Afghanistan … we waste billions there. Nonsense!”

Army CH-47 Chinook helicopter pilots fly near Jalalabad, Afghanistan, April 5, 2017. The pilots are assigned to the 7th Infantry Division’s Task Force, 16th Combat Aviation Brigade.The unit is preparing to support Operation Freedom’s Sentinel and Resolute Support. (Army photo by Capt. Brian Harris)

And whatever happened to the reality TV star who used to tell under-performers, “you’re fired”?

Today, as commander in chief, President Trump is indefinitely extending the Afghan war’s record as the longest in U.S. history. He’s wasting $45 billion to wage it this year alone. And he’s not even thinking of firing his huckster generals who claim that sending a few thousand more troops and stepping up the bombing will be a “game changer.”

Much like the Vietnam War, every day’s news of war from Afghanistan puts the lie to optimistic claims of a military solution. A recent BBC study concluded that Taliban forces are now active in 70 percent of the country, more than at any time since the end of 2001. Unofficial U.S. estimates of their strength have soared from about 20,000 in 2014 to at least 60,000 today.

Afghan government forces number several times as many, but—like their counterparts in the Vietnam War—they “lack the one thing the U.S. cannot provide: the will to fight a protracted campaign against a committed enemy,” in the words of Bill Roggio, editor of the Long War Journal at the hawkish Foundation for Defense of Democracies.

The Taliban have proven that no place in Afghanistan is safe from their long arm. At the beginning of February, they infiltrated a bomb-laden ambulance into Kabul, just blocks from a meeting at the Afghan Ministry of Defense with the head of the U.S. Central Command. Its blast killed more than 100 people and injured 235. It followed only days after Taliban gunmen stormed the Intercontinental Hotel in Kabul, killing at least 20 people, including four Americans.

 

To continue reading: Time to Admit the Afghan War is ‘Nonsense’

Trump’s National Defense Strategy: Something for Everyone (in the Military-Industrial Complex), by Danny Sjursen

Defense spending is dictated by policy. The many beneficiaries of the US’s global hegemony policy got what they wanted in Trump’s new national defense strategy. It won’t, however, make the US population any safer from foreign invasion than they are now (the US hasn’t been invaded for almost 200 years). From Danny Sjursen at tomdispatch.com:

Think of it as the chicken-or-the-egg question for the ages: Do very real threats to the United States inadvertently benefit the military-industrial complex or does the national security state, by its very nature, conjure up inflated threats to feed that defense machine? 

Back in 2008, some of us placed our faith, naively enough, in the hands of mainstream Democrats — specifically, those of a young senator named Barack Obama.  He would reverse the war policies of George W. Bush, deescalate the unbridled Global War on Terror, and right the ship of state. How’d that turn out?

In retrospect, though couched in a far more sophisticated and peaceable rhetoric than Bush’s, his moves would prove largely cosmetic when it came to this country’s forever wars: a significant reduction in the use of conventional ground troops, but more drones, more commandos, and yet more acts of ill-advised regime change.  Don’t get me wrong: as a veteran of two of Washington’s wars, I was glad when “no-drama” Obama decreased the number of boots on the ground in the Middle East.  It’s now obvious, however, that he left the basic infrastructure of eternal war firmly in place. 

Enter The Donald.

For all his half-baked tweets, insults, and boasts, as well as his refusal to readanything of substance on issues of war and peace, some of candidate Trump’s foreign policy ideas seemed far saner than those of just about any other politician around or the previous two presidents.  I mean, the Iraq War was dumb, and maybe it wasn’t the craziest idea for America’s allies to start thinking about defending themselves, and maybe Washington ought to put some time and diplomatic effort into avoiding a possibly catastrophic clash or set of clashes with Vladimir Putin’s Russia.

Unfortunately, the White House version of all this proved oh-so-familiar.  President Trump’s decision, for instance, to double down on a losing bet in Afghanistan in spite of his “instincts” (and on similar bets in Somalia, Syria, and elsewhere) and his recently published National Defense Strategy (NDS) leave little doubt that he’s surrendered to Secretary of Defense James Mattis and National Security Advisor H.R. McMaster, the mainstream interventionists in his administration.

To continue reading: Trump’s National Defense Strategy: Something for Everyone (in the Military-Industrial Complex)

Don’t Be a Moron: Russia Didn’t Attack US Troops in Syria, by Darius Shahtahmasebi

Is a country “under attack” when it invades another country and the invaded country or its ally responds? From Darius Shahtahmasebi at theantimedia.org:

On February 16, 2018, Bloomberg’s Eli Lake published an article entitled “Don’t Be Fooled: Russia Attacked U.S. Troops in Syria.”

For context, the U.S.-led coalition conducted air and artillery strikes against what was believed to be pro-government forces in Syria on February 7, 2018, in response to an “unprovoked attack” launched by these pro-regime forces. Not long after, reports began emerging that significant numbers of Russian personnel were included in the over 100 dead and wounded, though Russia denied this at first. As the evidence began to mount, the accepted version of events on both sides was that those involved were Russian mercenaries and contractors, not official troops.

When asked about the incident initially, U.S. Secretary of Defense James Mattis said he had “no idea why they [pro-government forces] would attack there, the forces were known to be there, obviously the Russians knew.”

“We have always known that there are elements in this very complex battle space that the Russians did not have, I would call it, control of,” he added.

“Now, it should be said that Mattis, a retired four-star Marine Corps general, is a very smart man. His perplexity in this case is probably what Plato called a ‘noble lie,’ a falsehood spoken by a leader to achieve a greater social good. If Mattis acknowledges the obvious — that the Kremlin authorized a direct assault on a U.S.-sponsored base by non-uniformed personnel — he risks an escalation spiral in Syria. Better to express bewilderment and give Russian President Vladimir Putin a chance to back down and deny culpability, which he ended up doing despite the heavy casualties suffered by his mercenaries.”

Lake added:

“But make no mistake: There is overwhelming evidence that those Russian contractors were working at the behest of the Kremlin. What’s more, the Russians knew U.S. military personnel were in Deir Ezzor, which has been part of successive agreements to separate, or ‘deconflict,’ forces fighting in Syria.

To continue reading: Don’t Be a Moron: Russia Didn’t Attack US Troops in Syria

Dancing to US Tune: NATO Creates Military Schengen and Launches Iraq Mission, by Alex Gorka

There were two big, but little-noticed, policy changes at the recent meeting of NATO defense chiefs. From Alex Gorka at strategic-culture.org:

The NATO defense chiefs’ meeting on February 14-15 was mainly devoted to sharing the defense burden and other issues routinely discussed at any event. As usual, there were turgid speeches with opaque meaning to leave one guessing what’s really behind those nice words. In fact, the alliance took two far-going decisions proving a clue to its plans for near future.

The ministers said yes to the creation of military Schengen to ease forces movements across the Old Continent. NATO is to do away with the cumbersome and lingering bureaucratic procedures hindering transportation of troops and hardware through territories of member states. One of the solutions is a standardized form used by European allies and partner states for granting permission for movements. Germany has offered to host the command center to implement the concept of free transit zone in view of its vast experience in providing logistical support.

It’s not red tape only. One thing leads to another. The military Schengen will inevitably result in additional expenditure to adapt the civilian infrastructure to military needs, upgrading roads, tunnels and bridges to enable hardware movements and heavy aircraft landings.

The decision is taken amid burgeoning preparations to boost military infrastructure near Russia’s borders. The fact that by signing the 1997 NATO-Russia Founding Act the bloc pledged not to deploy “substantial” ground forces on permanent basis close to Russia appears to be ignored and forgotten. With the document no longer valid, the bilateral military relationship will be deprived of any legal basis.

To augment the forces in East Europe, the Black Sea, the Baltics and the Scandinavian Peninsula the bloc needs new logistic hubs. Unobstructed large-scale transport movements become top priority for implementation of the war plans, such as concentrating combat-ready stocks for a full US brigade in Poland. So, the alliance is clearing the obstacles that hinder its ability to rapidly boost forward presence and concentrate forces for an attack.

To continue reading: Dancing to US Tune: NATO Creates Military Schengen and Launches Iraq Mission

Kurdish Fighters Strike Deal With Syrian Army To Drive Turks Out, by Tyler Durden

In Syria, you can’t tell the players and which team they’re on (sometimes they switch teams) without a scorecard. Even with a scorecard it’s confusing. From Tyler Durden at zerohedge.com:

Confirming that the “enemy of my enemy is my friend”, YPG Kurdish fighters in north-western Syria – who as a reminder are backed by the US, the country which for 7 years has waged a proxy war to overthrow president Bashar al Assad – have struck a deal with the Russia-backed Assad regime for Syrian forces to enter the Afrin region and repel a Turkish offensive which began last month.

Badran Jia Kurd, an advisor to the Kurdish-led administration in northern Syria told Reuters that Syrian troops will deploy along several border positions and could enter the region within the next two days: “we can cooperate with any side that lends us a helping hand in light of the barbaric crimes and the international silence,” Jia Kurd said.

Meanwhile, a conflicting report from a senior Kurdish official comes from YPG representative Brusk Hasake in Afrin, who told Sputnik News “We have repeatedly said that Syrian Army has not entered [and] will not enter Afrin. If there is an agreement we will make a statement [on it].”

As we reported at the time, Turkish ground forces crossed the Syrian border and pushed into northern Syria’s Afrin province on January 20, after Ankara launched artillery and air strikes on a U.S.-backed Kurdish militia it aims to sweep from its border as part of “Operation Olive Branch.”

Turkey considers the Kurdish fighters from the YPG – which receives funding from the United States to fight the Islamic State, to be terrorists.

Senior Kurdish official Badran Jia Kurd told Reuters that Syrian government forces could enter the Afrin region within days to repel the Turks, while Syrian state TV reports that Regime forces will enter “within hours.”

To continue reading: Kurdish Fighters Strike Deal With Syrian Army To Drive Turks Out

Escalation in Syria – how far can the Russians be pushed? by the Saker

The US is determined to remain in a country, Syria, that does not want it there, and is determined to make mischief. From the Saker at unz.com:

Events in Syria have recently clearly taken a turn for the worse and there is an increasing amount of evidence that the Russian task force in Syria is being targeted by a systematic campaign of “harassing attacks”.

First, there was the (relatively successful) drone and mortar attack on the Russian Aerospace base in Khmeimin. Then there was the shooting down of a Russian SU-25 over the city of Maasran in the Idlib province. Now we hear of Russian casualties in the US raid on a Syrian column (along with widely exaggerated claims of “hundreds” of killed Russians). In the first case, Russian officials did openly voice their strong suspicion that the attack was if not planned and executed by the US, then at least coordinated with the US forces in the vicinity. In the case of the downing of the SU-25, no overt accusations have been made, but many experts have stated that the altitude at which the SU-25 was hit strongly suggests a rather modern MANPAD of a type not typically seen in Syria (the not so subtle hint being here that these were US Stingers sent to the Kurds by the US). As for the latest attack on the Syrian column, what is under discussion is not who did it but rather what kind of Russian personnel was involved, Russian military or private contractors (the latter is a much more likely explanation since the Syrian column had no air-cover whatsoever). Taken separately, none of these incidents mean very much but taken together they might be indicative of a new US strategy in Syria: to punish the Russians as much as possible short of an overt US attack on Russian forces. To me this hypothesis seems plausible for the following reasons:

First, the US and Israel are still reeling in humiliation and impotent rage over their defeat in Syria: Assad is still in power, Daesh is more or less defeated, the Russians were successful not only their military operations against Daesh but also in their campaign to bring as many “good terrorists” to the negotiating table as possible. With the completion of a successful conference on Syria in Russia and the general agreement of all parties to begin working on a new constitution, there was a real danger of peace breaking out, something the AngloZionist are absolutely determined to oppose (check out this apparently hacked document which, if genuine, clearly states the US policy not to allow the Russian to get anything done).

To continue reading: Escalation in Syria – how far can the Russians be pushed?