Saturday, January 31, 2015

Fall Guy

I have vowed to quit this blogging stuff over and over, since few are reading and nothing ever changes.  But somehow the events of the day always seem to force another post, so here we go.

Soon-to-be former Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel was recently quizzed by CNN's Barbara Starr about his role in releasing GITMO terrorists, er, armed insurgents, and whether he was being pressured by the White House in doing so.  Pay close attention to what he says about certification of release of detainees:




Now, watch White House press sec Josh Earnest answer a question about the GITMO release of the Taliban Five, making a point to name Hagel as the guy who signed off on the Taliban 5 releases...

It doesn't take George Will to figure out what's going on here. The White House, for political reasons, needs to close GITMO. They really don't care who they release in getting there other than the top few thugs like KSM (who they want transferred to US for trial) because after all, America has a big military-intelligence apparatus and can handle any blow-back.  But in doing so they likely don't want to expose any trusted Democratic ally to the liability of signing off on the releases in case one of them ends up participating in a future attack.  Looks bad for the brand. 

So they make a big to-do of announcing a 'bi-partisan' pick for Secretary of Defense, Republican Chuck Hagel.  His pick came with several juicy side benefits as well--he was the guy who generally hated Bush, thought the Iraq war was dumb and later had a dust-up with McCain and other fellow GOP Senators. He was also a distinguished veteran who could shame any GOP chickenhawk.

That's the kind of person they wanted signing off on the GITMO release forms (and overseeing military budget cuts and retreats), not Dem loyalists like Leon Panetta.  Maybe Hagel didn't realize this when he came in the door, maybe it took awhile, maybe he did but in the process of serving with these guys changed his mind.  But he clearly knows it now and seems to be upset about it to the point of making it known to the press.

One could easily blame his confession on CYA politics or perhaps a tell-all book in the offing, but it may be something more. His general message is that the administration is trying to release terrorists too fast without enough concern about their future threat, and he didn't feel comfortable doing that. One has to wonder whether the same kind of mentality entered into the apparent decision of the Joint Chiefs of Staff to clandestinely send an emissary to negotiate with Gaddafy's moderate Muslim son Saif back when Obama was trying to save Benghazi?

If so, it begs the question as to whether some high level military folks in this country are questioning the foreign policy decisions of this administration to the point of them being dangerous, feeling the need to push the envelope by sidestepping the chain of command, which is unheard of and certainly a huge story should the MSM ever notice.  Yes, some of it right now could be Hillary 2016! politics, but it wasn't back then outside the possibility Hillary herself was trying to appear tough for her upcoming run, which was perhaps part of the concern.  

Add to that the story today about Rand Paul relaying details of a meeting in 2013 where the president told GOP leaders about Hillary being handed Libya, which suggests Obama was somewhat disengaged to the point of being deceived by Hillary about the threat to Benghazi resulting in an illegal war based on 'imminent threat'.  Even now we see that politics so rules this administration that they've gone into denial on whether the Taliban is a terrorist entity or not, calling them an "armed insurgency" in displays of pretzel logic like this...


All to pave the way for some kind of delusional 'end of conflict' (the reason they traded Bergdahl) so they can make peace with the Taliban, blame Bush, and move on to social justice and income redistribution before it's too late.  

To be sure, this isn't the first time a WH has fought with outside forces on controlling the narrative. They want it focused on whatever domestic thingy Obama is pushing at any given time. Right now it's 'the middle class' (odd, since he wasn't focusing on that before the mid-term elections), or generally ANYTHING but foreign policy and terrorism.  But too much denial of national security threats in the same of domestic politics can be dangerous, as many at the highest levels well know.

Friday, January 30, 2015

Hmmm..

This little nugget was slipped into a CNN piece detailing the JV team's new attack on Kirkuk (emphasis added):
The U.S. military said Friday that an ISIS chemical weapons expert was killed during a coalition strike late last week. Abu Malik worked in Saddam Hussein's chemical weapons program before joining al Qaeda in 2005, U.S. Central Command said.
He was killed January 24 near Mosul. "His death is expected to temporarily degrade and disrupt the terrorist network and diminish (ISIS') ability to potentially produce and use chemical weapons against innocent people," the military said.
Did anyone know ISIS had any history with chem-weapons? Aside from this? And why was a former Saddam chemical weapons expert even considered a threat? Saddam didn't have any WMD and Iraq was a dumb war, we were told.

MEANWHILE.. ANOTHER HMMM...

US officials leaked to the Washington Post that yeah, the CNN helped the Mossad kill major-league Hizballah terrorist Imad Mughniyah back in 2008.

Imad, who? The guy who helped orchestrate the Beirut bombing, TWA 847 hijacking (and murder of a Navy diver), the Khobar Towers bombing, and who was helping Iran kill US troops in Iraq. Among other things, perhaps.

A big fish.  Remember that dramatic picture of Bush and crew sitting in the Situation Room as the Mughniyah killing came down? Of course not, because it never happened. The Bush folks simply eliminated one of the most dangerous Islamic terrorists in the world and there was hardly a yawn.

But back to the leak. Why now? We are right in the middle of the weird killing in Argentina, where a prosecutor was about to testify about Iran's involvement, ie, through Mughniyah, in the bombing of a Jewish Community Center in 1994 that killed over 80 people.  And, we are also right in the middle of a negotiation with Iran over ending their nuclear weapons program with the third deadline coming in March and Congress getting ancy.  Did this leak perhaps come from Netanyahu's people, implicating the US in the killing of Iran's biggest proxy operator, right at a crucial time? 

Thursday, January 29, 2015

End of Conflict?

The conservative media keyed on White House spokesman Eric Schultz's answer to a question from ABC's Jon Karl saying that ISIS are terrorists but the Taliban are only 'armed insurgents'.  That's pretty bad.   Karl asked the question in regards to why the trade of Bergdahl was not considered giving concessions to terrorists, something they say the US won't do.  So the administration doesn't think the Taliban fit that mold.

But included in that same reply was a curious statement from Sharyl Attkisson's favorite WH staffer that Karl half-questioned, and it's actually more controversial than calling the Tollybon insurgents...



Yes, they believe the conflict is over in Afghanistan.  The war is over.  And this end of conflict required the administration to act quickly to "not leave someone behind".   Because the war was over. 

Except 10,000 troops are still there.  And their mission was quietly expanded during the holidays to make it possible to go after Taliaban insurgents if they are planning attacks on US assets or helping terrorist networks such as AQ-core or the Haqqani boys.   The Haqqani Network held control over Bergdahl.  But they are terrorists.  Unless they are not.  No worries, we can trade five untried Taliban insurgents back to them because they are not terrorists.  Unless they help terrorists.  Or it's a Blue Moon. 

As to what happens if another one of our troops gets captured now that the conflict is over, well, perhaps Lorertta Lynch could find an answer to that question. 

Friday, January 23, 2015

Terror List Update

As of this post both the State Department Rewards for Justice and FBI most-wanted terrorist websites still show AQ bigwig Adnan el-Shukrijumah as a wanted terrorist, despite his reported death in Pakistan back in early December.   Wonder why?


Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Dragging Congress Back to Iraq

Reportedly Obama will ask Congress for a new AUMF in Iraq to fight ISIL,ISIS, IS, Daesh.
"I call on this Congress to show the world that we are united in this mission by passing a resolution to authorize the use of force against ISIL," Obama said, referring to the Islamic State group.
An area of compromise, according to AP reporter Julie Pace.  Sounds more like a naked attempt to drag the GOP Congress back into Iraq and get them on the hook should the degrading and destroying not be complete before 2016.   They signed onto the old one (where did it go) but that war was 'ended' responsibly, perhaps one of the greatest accomplishments of the Obama administration.  Yeah, so that's a lot of hangout for the Dems if things don't go well over the next 18 months.

Anyway, we'll see if the previews match the puff and pageantry.

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Al-Marri Free

Ali Saleh al-Marri was once a trusted sleeper for the enemy of the United States of America.  He entered the country before 9/11 on a student Visa and used the web to research cyanide along with locations of dams, waterways and tunnels.  By the way, for those who think researching dams isn't a big deal anymore, refer to this case.

He was picked up in December 2001 and later named an enemy combatant by the Bush torturers. ACLU types eventually got him into the criminal system and in the first year of the Obama administration a federal judge sentenced him to 8 years and time served (in the Bushco gulags).  Using the new math that means he's now free as a bird, back home in Qatar (pronounced gutter).

In 2009 the AP's Pamela Hess reported on his previous life as follows:
After arriving in the U.S. on Sept. 10, 2001, a day before al-Qaida's long-plotted terror strikes in New York and Washington, Al-Marri stored phone numbers of al-Qaida associates in a personal electronic device.
He used a "10-code" to protect the numbers, subtracting the actual digits in the phone numbers from 10 to arrive at a coded number, according to a person close to the investigation. In a 10-code, eight becomes a two, for example. Other al-Qaida members used the same code, according to the plea agreement.
Al-Marri sent e-mails to Khalid Sheikh Mohammed's hotmail account, HOR70@hotmail.com, addressed to "Muk" and signed "Abdo." The details of that code were included in an address book found in an al-Qaida safehouse in Pakistan.
An attempt by The Associated Press to reach that address did not indicate the account had been closed, but it went unanswered. Al-Marri initially tried to use a Yahoo e-mail account to contact Mohammed, but it failed to go through. So he switched to Hotmail as well.
When al-Marri arrived in the United States, he created five new e-mail accounts to communicate with Mohammed, using the 10-code to send him his cell phone number in Peoria. From September to November, al-Marri tried and failed to contact members of al-Qaida in Pakistan using prepaid calling cards and public phones, sometimes traveling 160 miles to use a different phone.
While he might seem more bumbler than Bond, he spent 3 years training in terror camps to pull off an attack and use codes, then entered the States content on helping facilitate an attack--after 9/11.  The History Commons site has a lot of information on al-Marri's alleged infractions, including a comment made about him by KSM..
He will describe al-Marri as “the perfect sleeper agent because he has studied in the United States, had no criminal record, and had a family with whom he could travel.”
After being picked up he cried a lot about missing that family while apologizing and renouncing violence because Islam is a peaceful religion, which tends to sway the squishies who consider Bush-Cheney the real terrorists.  So now, only a week or so after Paris, he's back in the Middle East, no harm, no foul.  For those who continue to wonder about the Obama doctrine, this is basically it

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Stupidest Criminals of the Year

Hey, let's go a robbery spree targeting...... doughnut shops?   Yeah.
Two men arrested at a Dunkin' Donuts they allegedly intended to rob have been charged in a string of holdups at gas stations and doughnut shops across Long Island over the past two weeks, officials say.
Good Lord, have they never actually heard of the cop+doughnut thing? Don't they know cops are almost always within surveillance range of a doughnut shop?  Yes, it's early in the year but these goofballs have to be pretty high on the list.

Saturday, January 10, 2015

French PM splits with Obama

Prime Minister Manuel Valls, speaking in Paris:
“It is a war against terrorism, against jihadism, against radical Islam, against everything that is aimed at breaking fraternity, freedom, solidarity,” Mr. Valls said during a speech in √Čvry, south of Paris.
Fairly straightforward.  Sounds like Dubya.   Now, President Barack Obama, speaking at a rally in Knoxville:
And in the streets of Paris, the world has seen once again what terrorists stand for. They have nothing to offer but hatred and human suffering. And we stand for freedom and hope and the dignity of all human beings. And that’s what the city of Paris represents to the world, and that spirit will endure forever -- long after the scourge of terrorism is banished from this world. (Applause.)
Dreamy thought, but no mention of the kind of terrorism or what might be driving it.  Yes, everyone agrees it will be a great day when the scourge of generic terrorism is banished from the Earth, apparently by redistributive socialism or something.  Just don't ever identify it because the future does not belong those who slander the prophet of Islam, peace be upon him inshallah.   

Meanwhile this attack is opening a huge can of hypocrisy across the West. David Brooks from the Times weighed in yesterday, and before his point became unintelligible he mentioned that some of the same liberals now chanting "Je Suis Charlie!" were applauding when Ayaan Hirsi Ali was banned from Brandeis for being an Islamophobic racist.

The remaining Charlie cartoonists/journalist have also expressed some interesting surprise.  In an interview with Anderson Cooper last night one of the former staffers described the ignominy of being labeled "Islamophobic" by Muslims for daring to draw pictures of the prophet Mohammed after all the vicious scorn they had heaped on the French right wing for their racist views of Arab Muslim immigration into France.  It's a "don't they know who we are?" kind of moment.   The jihadists don't care.  That's the point the left has missed.  This isn't some Cheney pipe dream.

   
So while parts of France have awakened to the threat the West has been under since the 90s and liberals in America and Europe suddenly see the enemy in their face isn't some neocon creation it remains to be seen whether all elements can finally come together to do something about the problem.   Already the Je Suis Charlie folks are saying they vomit on the idea of such unity.

WHOOPS   1/11/15

ABC's reprint of an AP story detailing Obama's summit on violent extremism contains some unusual punctuation...


See the question mark inserted after the first sentence?  Almost as if to ask "specifically what kind of extremism do you mean?"  Well, that's the way I read it.  Surely ABC just made a typo.  But it was a good one. 

REALLY?  1/12/15

It has actually been shocking to read the international and even some domestic press and see them asking where the United States was--specifically the president--as 50 world leaders and over 2 million people marched in unison against Islamic terrorism in Paris.  Seems John Francious Kerry was on a scheduled trip to India to tour an auto plant and warn the world about the most violent foe we face today--global climate change--and for that he couldn't be moved to go speak some French in Paris.  But he's going Thursday, to talk about global violent extremism, which presumably doesn't include the protesters and looters in Ferguson.

Obama and Biden had nothing on their schedule perhaps short of the NFL playoffs, but according to flaks they were 'deeply involved'.  Besides, Eric Holder was in Paris to talk about violent extremists, whoever they are (not his people who rioted in Ferguson).  But he was too busy to show at the rally.  And deputy secretary of something Victoria (F the EU) Nuland did something somewhere that was supposed to matter.

No doubt the professional WH flacks will explain this snub to the satisfaction of the professional baby bird media today, if they are successful maybe even turning it into an attack on Bush and the GOP.   But an actual reporter might ask if the snub was in fact intentional and part of the White House's overall approach to Islamist terrorism, ie, that it's a law enforcement 'nuisance' we need to deal with through social programs, redistribution, and diversity training.  And that AQ is on the run, decimated, the wars are ending responsibly and we need to nation-build at home.   

But remember, the main reason the international and domestic press, Hollywood, and EU liberals are shocked over this and took to the streets is because up until now the Global War on Terror had been thought of more or less as the Global War on Muslims caused by Dick Cheney.   Only when a far left paper was attacked--especially after all the love they gave the immigrant Arabs defending them against the French far-right haterz--did it open some eyes as to the nature of Islamist terrorism.  Whether this will be a tipping point, teachable moment, or bridge to understanding remains to be seen.  

Friday, January 09, 2015

Investigation Update

Breaking today--the Dept of Justice might charge General Betrayus with leaking classified info to his Lt. Colonel mistress.

Only fair, right?  Leaking is leaking.  Little guys like Jeffrey Sterling, who will stand trial soon, and John Kiriakou, who went to jail, were not immune. Matter of fact, General Petraeus was quoted as saying the following about Kiriakou:
General David Petraeus, CIA director, made a statement to CIA employees: "This case yielded the first IIPA successful prosecution in 27 years, and it marks an important victory for our Agency, for our Intelligence Community, and for our country. Oaths do matter, and there are indeed consequences for those who believe they are above the laws".
Ouch. So there's a little room for schadenfreude there. 

Then again former Clinton NSA Sandy Berger never served time for stealing and destroying documents from the National Archives that might have pertained to 9/11.  And speaking of generals, what about "Obama's favorite general" James "Hoss" Cartwright, who was told in 2013 he was a target in a probe investigating the Stuxnet leak to an Obama-friendly NY Times reporter back in 2012?   What's happening with his case?

We don't know.  We do know that Jill Abramson, the editor of that Obama-friendly newspaper was fired last year only months after calling the Obama administration the most secretive she had ever dealt with in the midst of discussing the record number of leak prosecutions.  

So it's hard to figure whether Holder will go out the door by taking Petraeus down.  It would be typical Obama, but he's a pretty astute politician, too.     

Wednesday, January 07, 2015

What difference, at this point, does it make?

Not that it has come up yet, but who cares whether the Paris murdering jihadi-thugs were lone wolves or official members of an AQ cell?   Their actions are inseparable, all done in the name of Islam.

Al-Sisi just spoke about all of this the other day.  His words were largely ignored in the West.  And he's probably rising with a bullet on AQ's Inspire Hit Parade as we speak.

In the meantime it's nice to see the peeps across Europe finally assembling in the streets to offer statements of defiance towards this murderous intolerant ideology...

 

Too bad our own leader has repeatedly equivocated when it counted as to taking these kinds of stands. We'll see if Hollande does likewise in the next few days. 



(The last sentence in that clip is strange considering this).  

Speaking of AQ terrorists and lists, Adnan el-Shukrijumah is still on the State Department's Rewards for Justice and the FBI's most-wanted terrorist lists, this despite the Taliban and others proclaiming otherwise.  Pretty good accomplishment for a dead guy (he's now eligible to vote in Memphis and Chicago!). Why won't the administration confirm his death? Why will nobody ask them?