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Syria Rebels Push into Police Academy as Jets Strike
Today's Headlines
Headline Comments [Views]
Page 3: Non-WoT
4 23:41 JosephMendiola [298] 
11 19:43 Thing From Snowy Mountain [301] 
1 14:25 trailing wife [298] 
3 14:56 Alanc [275] 
2 10:00 Bill Clinton [283] 
2 10:45 JohnQC [282] 
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1 07:04 Richard Aubrey [269] 
11 16:43 CrazyFool [272] 
3 06:54 Besoeker [258] 
24 19:34 Northern Cousin [392] 
4 11:39 swksvolFF [304] 
7 15:35 Besoeker [300] 
Page 1: WoT Operations
9 21:02 Barbara [351]
2 14:51 Anguper Hupomosing9418 [311]
2 21:26 Raider [320]
1 00:43 GolfBravoUSMC [353]
2 16:09 Steve White [330]
1 07:40 Glenmore [297]
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Page 2: WoT Background
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8 22:51 Nero [297]
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6 22:15 USN,Ret. [295]
5 16:41 Muggsy Mussolini1226 [288]
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1 07:45 Glenmore [269]
1 06:38 Besoeker [295]
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1 08:40 Rambler in Virginia [276]
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2 07:49 Frank G [270]
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Page 4: Opinion
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20 22:43 USN,Ret. [330]
1 08:14 Alanc [290]
6 18:10 CrazyFool [305]
Page 6: Politix
13 22:12 tu3031 [299]
4 23:34 JosephMendiola [309]
20 22:52 USN,Ret. [337]
-Short Attention Span Theater-
Another business visited by the Champ goes tango-uniform.
Last week, it was announced that Ray's Hades Burger just outside the Washington beltway would be closing its doors. A fan of the burger joint was the POTUS, who had visited the location with his Russian communist counterparts.

Well, it's happened again. In August, Champ visited Star Brewery in Dubuque. And now a local publication reports that the business is closing its doors.

Star Restaurant and Ultra Lounge apparently has closed.

A sign posted on the front door of the Port of Dubuque restaurant, at 600 Star Brewery Drive, says the business is "permanently closed" KEEP OUT!

Owners Matt and Sarah Kluesner, who also own Crust Italian Kitchen & Bar in downtown Dubuque, did not return multiple calls seeking comment.

Star Restaurant was one of the anchor tenants in the Dubuque Star Brewery, which was renovated in recent years and became one of the major attractions in the redeveloped Port of Dubuque.

The brewery redevelopment project totaled $6.5 million and was led by local Dem, Wayne Briggs and a group he headed up called Port of Dubuque LLC.
Posted by: Besoeker || 02/27/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [300 views] Top||

#1  Look for Democratic Donors,You'll find them.
Posted by: Redneck Jim || 02/27/2013 0:14 Comments || Top||

#2  the Anti-Midas. Everything he touches turns to shit
Posted by: Frank G || 02/27/2013 7:50 Comments || Top||

#3  He's the Man With the Midden Touch.
Posted by: charger || 02/27/2013 11:10 Comments || Top||

#4  On the bright side, we have received 18" of snow since the SOTU killer drought segment. I think if he got on the 'prompter and said it is our patriotic duty to let the dryer eat our socks, every missing sock would be found within 48 hours.
Posted by: swksvolFF || 02/27/2013 12:27 Comments || Top||

#5  As a matter of fact, Rays Hell Burger closed the one location to open very close by at a new location.

I've yet to go there myself but all my liberal friends love it and god knows there are plenty of liberals around this town to keep it going.
Posted by: eltoroverde || 02/27/2013 13:44 Comments || Top||

#6  But I thought eating red meat meant you were a conservative?

Has PETA written a strongly worded memo to the empty suit yet?
Posted by: Bill Clinton || 02/27/2013 14:57 Comments || Top||

#7  Used to be a pretty good burger place up on Wisconsin called "Good Guys". Prolly gone by now.
:-(
Posted by: Besoeker || 02/27/2013 15:35 Comments || Top||


Africa North
Egypt Courting Iranians For Tourism
[Ynet] As relations between two regional heavyweights continues to slowly improve, Egyptian minister flies to Tehran in bid to lure Iranian tourists to help his country's ailing economy
Lots of blahblah, here are the paragraphs of interest, showing Egypt's increasing economic desperation.
President Mahmoud Short Round Ahmadinejad said he anticipated that many of the eight to 10 million Iranians who holiday abroad every year will start coming to Egypt.

However,
a person who gets all wrapped up in himself makes a mighty small package...
the sight of Iranian women, should they choose to wear the traditional Shiite cloak known as a chador, is likely to anger Egypt's ultraconservative Salafis -- Sunni Moslems who follow a doctrine similar to that of the Wahhabi movement in Soddy Arabia
...a kingdom taking up the bulk of the Arabian peninsula. Its primary economic activity involves exporting oil and soaking Islamic rubes on the annual hajj pilgrimage. The country supports a large number of princes in whatcha might call princely splendor. When the oil runs out the rest of the world is going to kick sand in their national face...
.
Despite the friction, Egypt needs the tourism.
So the first tour group will come to see the pyramids and Tahrir Square, watch the belly dancers, eat Egypt's traditional bread with lentils, and vainly try to keep their womenfolk from being interfered with by gangs of Egyptian men -- as they are wont to do these days -- and that will be the end of that.
The diplomat said that Egypt wants Iranian tourists to help improve the country's economy, since tourism is one of the nation's biggest revenue earners and employs millions of Egyptians. The diplomat was not authorized to speak to the press and thus spoke on condition of anonymity.

Continued turmoil in Egypt has scared away tourists and foreign investors, pushing down foreign currency reserves to less than $14 billion and forcing Cairo to turn to oil-rich Gulf states for loans and handouts.
Posted by: trailing wife || 02/27/2013 04:39 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [275 views] Top||

#1  the iranian tourists might like the egyptian balloon rides
Posted by: lord garth || 02/27/2013 9:01 Comments || Top||

#2  More likely it'll be groups of 30-40 youngish-to-middle-aged male Iranians; 'retired government employees' with a keen interest in the resort areas along the Sinai peninsula.
Posted by: Pappy || 02/27/2013 12:23 Comments || Top||

#3  Do you think they'll be taking balloon rides?
Posted by: Alanc || 02/27/2013 14:56 Comments || Top||


Salafi Watan Party set to run in parliamentary elections
[Egypt Independent] The Political Parties' Affairs Committee approved the establishment of the Salafi Watan Party, headed by Emad Abdel Ghafour, on Tuesday.

The new political force plans to back candidates in every riding in the upcoming parliamentary slated to begin in April.

Ghafour, who resigned as chairman of the Salafi Nour Party and is currently serving as the president's community communication adviser, submitted 6,000 signatures from founding members of the Watan Party on 5 February.

Several prominent members of the Nour Party had resigned to join the new Salafi entity. Watan Party has already established 30 offices nationwide, according to an official statement. Ghafour has said more offices are in the works and would be would be inaugurated soon.
Posted by: Fred || 02/27/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [265 views] Top||


Egyptian churches will not be attending national dialogue
[Egypt Independent] The three Egyptian churches have excused themselves from the televised national dialogue session called for by President Mohamed Morsy for Tuesday.

Bishop Andrea Zaki, head of the Coptic Evangelical Church, told the state news agency MENA that the Coptic Catholic, Orthodox and Evangelical Churches had decided not to attend the session, but were calling for holding another private session with the president to address their concerns about a number of constitutional articles.

Zaki said that the suggestions and concerns presented by the three churches representatives during the previous dialogue sessions were not taken seriously by the presidency.

"We are convinced that such dialogues yield nothing new. That's why the churches representatives withdrew from the previous dialogue session," he added.
Posted by: Fred || 02/27/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [260 views] Top||


Border guards storm Libya cabinet
[MAGHAREBIA] Dozens of Libyan border guards on Monday (February 25th) stormed the cabinet headquarters in Tripoli
...a confusing city, one end of which is located in Lebanon and the other end of which is the capital of Libya. Its chief distinction is being mentioned in the Marine Hymn...
to protest their salaries. They claimed that they had worked without pay since last March.

"We revolutionaries offered ourselves up for the protection of Libya and haven't spared anything," Youssef Abdul Hai said. "Right now, there is a state and we want our rights. We aren't cheats or crooks."

Last Thursday, Prime Minister Ali Zidan said that irregularities had been found in many revolutionaries' accounts. Some 250,000 duplicate names were identified. One name was repeated 20 times. A number of people also appeared to have the same bank account.
Posted by: Fred || 02/27/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [269 views] Top||

#1  The story about the messed-up accounts was actually recycled from the Detroit Public Schools.
The emergency manager decreed that everybody would have to pick up their checks in person. About 250 paychecks went unclaimed. So add a couple of zeros and you get the Libya story. Lazy journalism.
OTOH, it might be true. Maybe the border guards have been reading the Detroit Free Press and figured it would be a good idea.
Posted by: Richard Aubrey || 02/27/2013 7:04 Comments || Top||


Caribbean-Latin America
Mexico's Pena Nieto Enacts Major Education Reform
[BBC] Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto has enacted a major reform of the education system that includes new standards for hiring teachers.

The reforms appear set to weaken the powerful teachers' union, led by Elba Esther Gordillo, which has largely controlled access to the profession.

Until now, the National Union of Education Workers (SNTE) has held sway over the criteria for being appointed and retained, a practice that has led to posts being inherited or sold.

The education system is believed to have thousands of phantom teachers on its books.

Ms Gordillo, who has led the SNTE for the past 23 years, and who was elected unopposed to another six-year term in October, was not present at Monday's signing ceremony.
See article below for an explanation of that little mystery. Life certainly is getting interesting, down south of the border.
Posted by: trailing wife || 02/27/2013 04:39 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [283 views] Top||

#1  Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto has enacted a major reform of the education system that includes new standards for hiring teachers.

..which, if he's smart, bars anyone who's taught in the "Alto" California school systems.
Posted by: Procopius2k || 02/27/2013 9:39 Comments || Top||

#2  I think the reform goes through given as how Ms Gordillo just got her butt thrown in the slammer for embezzlement of way too much money for a normal person to want.
Posted by: Bill Clinton || 02/27/2013 10:00 Comments || Top||


Mexican Bareknuckle Politics: Esther Gordillo busted for stealing
Protege of Salinas de Gortari gets arrested by another protege of Salinas de Gortari.

From TFA:

Authorities have arrested the leader of Mexico's largest union, accusing her of embezzling millions of dollars and using some of the money to pay for plastic surgery, shop at luxury stores and buy real estate.

Elba Esther Gordillo, who has led Mexico's high-profile national teacher's union for more than two decades, was in federal custody after she was arrested at an airport outside Mexico City on Tuesday, the country's attorney general told reporters.

Investigators from Mexico's treasury found that MX $2.6 billion (more than USD $200 million) had been routed from union funds into private bank accounts abroad, including some managed by Gordillo, Attorney General Jesus Murillo Karam said.
Posted by: badanov || 02/27/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [282 views] Top||

#1  Anyway we can throw the head of the California teachers union in jail for something?
Posted by: Bill Clinton || 02/27/2013 10:02 Comments || Top||

#2  Teacher's union? Could happen.
Posted by: JohnQC || 02/27/2013 10:45 Comments || Top||


China-Japan-Koreas
China moves mobile missiles near coast amid tensions with Japan over islands
Posted by: DarthVader || 02/27/2013 18:07 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [298 views] Top||

#1  Bluster... or getting ready to rumble?
Posted by: DarthVader || 02/27/2013 18:07 Comments || Top||

#2  IMO China is getting ready to rumble wid the US + Japan - however, iff histoire' is any measure they will first set up, satisfy, + prove before the World any + all legal precendents, etc. before the day when PLA suddenly + mortally opens fire on the JSDF + Japan CG. China will thus be justified in annihilating or massacring any JSDF + JCG due to Japan's seeming disrespect of China's arguments + "talking points". AS FAR AS CHINA WILL BE CONCERNED, ANY MASSACRE WILL BE JAPAN'S + O-N-L-Y JAPAN'S FAULT.

It will be the same for Nippon ally the US = US Navy-DOD.

Perhaps more importantly ...

E.G. TELEGRAPH.UK > EVEN IFF IRAN GETS THE BOMB, IT NOT WORTH WAR.

By that logic, ditto for the US = POTUS Bammer Admin vee the disputed tiny Senkakus/Diaoyus, ESPEC NOW WID SO-CALLED "SEQUESTRATION" CUTS LOOMING COME MARCH 1ST OR ASAP AFTER.

Lest we fergit, PENTAGON = the USN CVN USS "GEORGE WASHINGTON" + CVBG MAY BE THE O-N-L-Y US NUCLEAR CARRIER THE US CAN DEPLOY OVERSEAS IN INTERNATIONAL CRISIS DUE TO SEQUESTRATION.

The Japan-based "Georgie" is highly unlikely to survive a dedicated unilateral or combined mass attack of PLA DF-16's, DF-21 ASBMS, andor ALCMS, SLCMS. IMO IT WILL BE THE FIRST, OR ONE OF THE FIRST, MILITARY TARGETS THE PLA WILL ATTACK ONCE A FINAL DECISION TO WAGE WAR AGZ JAPAN HAS BEEN MADE IN BEIJING.

Posted by: JosephMendiola || 02/27/2013 18:39 Comments || Top||

#3  "The US can't intervene because it cannot econ or $$$ afford to".

The Bammer will be caught in a political trap because iff the DemoLeft + aligned can increase + expand America's deficits = US Welfare-Nanny State every year, BY DEFINITION IT CANNOT ARGUE THAT IT HAS NO MONEY TO MILITARILY INTERVENE ON BEHALF OF ITS OWN OVERSEAS ALLY(S) UNDER TREATY.

ANY ARGUMENT THAT THE US CANNOT AFFORD TO DEFEND + PROTECT ITS OWN OVERSEAS ALLIES WILL N-O-T FOOL CHINA NOR AMER'S ALLIES - IT WILL BE "PRIMA FACIE" DEFEATED WHILE THE US = POTUS BAMMER OR ADMIN IS MAKING OR SAYING IT.
Posted by: JosephMendiola || 02/27/2013 18:46 Comments || Top||

#4  See also TOPIX > [Asian Chronicle] THE "LAST PROVINCE": CAN TAIWAN RESIST BEIJING'S UNIFICATION DRIVE?

Personally, I'm more interested in Taiwan's ability to resist + defeat a massive Airborne-led PLA conventional forces assault + follow-on, where prohibitive PLA casualties is NOT a major factor/concern as far as Beijing is concerned, ONLY VICTORY.

* KYODO NEWS > THREE CHINESE VESSELS [again-n-n] ENTER TERRITORIAL WATERS AROUND SENKAKUS.

* GLOBAL TIMES > PLA PLANS 40 DRILLS IN 2013, ostensibly to improve the latent combat ability of the Chinese armed forces.
Posted by: JosephMendiola || 02/27/2013 23:41 Comments || Top||


China launches stealth frigate amid ocean tensions
China has launched the first ship in a new class of stealth missile frigates, state media reported Tuesday, amid ongoing tensions with neighboring countries over Beijing's maritime claims.

The People's Liberation Army Navy is building a total of 20 Type 056 Jiangdao class frigates to replace older models and bolster its ability to conduct patrols and escort ships and submarines in waters it claims in the South China and East China seas.

The first in the class, No. 582, was formally delivered to the navy on Monday in Shanghai, which is home to one of the country's largest complexes of naval shipyards, according to the official Xinhua News Agency and the navy's official website.

Newly promoted navy commander Wu Shengli attended the delivery ceremony, the reports said, an indication of the importance with which the service regards the new ships' mission.

The helicopter-equipped ships feature a sleek design to reduce clutter and make them harder to spot by radar and are armed with anti-ship and anti-aircraft missiles. They also need a crew of just 60, two-thirds fewer than older vessels, a major advantage that should boost efficiency and relieve burdens in training and recruitment. At 1,440 tons fully loaded, is considerably smaller than U.S. Navy frigates, and is categorized by some observers as a member of the smaller class of ship known as corvettes.
Posted by: tipper || 02/27/2013 14:09 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [301 views] Top||

#1  Sounds like they are moving towards expendable ships. Most of the crew on a modern warship are there for damage control and replacements during combat. If they expect the ship to go down right away (if it is ever spotted) those numbers can be drastically reduced.

At some point you can make the hull out of plastic and drop the radar signature even further. Of course by that point I think you really are dead if the enemy spots you.
Posted by: rjschwarz || 02/27/2013 14:41 Comments || Top||

#2  If you can build six of these for the cost of a Burke, it may be that all six of them together would be much more survivable than a single Burke. Even if one isn't as survivable.
Posted by: Thing From Snowy Mountain || 02/27/2013 15:05 Comments || Top||

#3  It looks roughly equivalent in armament to the LCS (_IF_ we put a decent radar on it, and some decent anti-shipping missiles). Based on a Thai design they had built in China back in the mid-2000's, for a cost of about $ 50 million per.

If we pretend the CIWS cost about 25 million, that would give it a total cost of around 75 million... about 1/8 the cost of the first LCS ships.

How much does a Burke cost these days?
Posted by: Thing From Snowy Mountain || 02/27/2013 15:13 Comments || Top||

#4  How much does a Burke cost these days?

I think if you have to ask, you can't afford it.
Posted by: Glenmore || 02/27/2013 15:58 Comments || Top||

#5  Snowy: that was the concept that drove the use of escort carriers in the Pacific in WWII. Sure, none of them were near as capable as an Essex class carrier, but you could build 4 escorts for half the cost of an Essex, and if one escort carrier was sunk (e.g., Leyte Gulf) you'd still have 3/4 of your escort fleet.
Posted by: Steve White || 02/27/2013 16:02 Comments || Top||

#6  There are good and bad things to that type of strategy.

The plus side is you don't have all your eggs in one basket.

The down side is all your support costs (fuel, parts, repair, maintenance in dock, etc.) just quadrupled.
Posted by: DarthVader || 02/27/2013 16:54 Comments || Top||

#7  Hm.. I don't think it'll quite quadruple since the escorts are much smaller (and hopefully standardized).

I think the idea is that you may not get the firepower or cargo capacity of a larger, much more expensive vessel - but you can make a lot of the little buggers.
Isn't Iran doing this in the other extreame - counting on overwhelming U.S. fleets via a virtual Zerg swarm of little boats?

And if the folks back home elect a democrat and you get your budget slashed you can always part one out to the others.
Posted by: CrazyFool || 02/27/2013 18:08 Comments || Top||

#8  That's true Dr. White, but you might want to note the number of Escort Carriers sunk and corresponding loss of high trained personel as opposed to the number of Essexs lost.

I think the score is like 9 to 0 in ships... but casualties, not sure about, I was just reading somewhere about this and can't remember where. :(

Mainly because Escort carriers were fighting out of class and getting their ass kicked in front line combat which they were not designed for.

Ah yes... from a commentor's link at CDR Salamander
Posted by: Shipman || 02/27/2013 18:09 Comments || Top||

#9  CrazyFool the costs are easily quadrupled, if not more. They may be cheaper to build but not cheaper to run. You got to have 4 times the berths, bunks, sailors, support people, military housing, storage for parts, fuel, drydock capacity, etc.

I would rather see larger ships with expendable unmanned escorts and planes. Yeah the target ship is a larger target and harder to replace, but you got to get through all the swarms of robots to get it.
Posted by: DarthVader || 02/27/2013 18:49 Comments || Top||

#10  They may have copycated/ enhanced/ modelled their frigate on the new Singapore Frigates. They have a crew of about 75 and which they claim includes considerable manpower redundancies due to the automation factor. Sleek but with a lot of inner deck space. Had a tour with both US and Canadian Navy officers in 2010. Both saw a lot of power and advancements - and looked at the crew size of a 1/3 plus much greater fuel efficiencies and were very impressed. As an old army dog I nodded a lot but I sure undertand the concept. Standardize the design and pump out a lot. Oh ya, thats what the Russians did with their aircraft and tanks in WW2. Meanwhile The Western powers continue to overteck weapons, over plasticize and then build to the specs of the lowest bidder (or biggest lobbiest). Hmmmmm.

They seem to have the right ship for their "claimed" waters. Who knew the 200 mile EEZs under the Law of the Sea Convention would cause this much fun? Oh I guess it was obvious except to the diplomats.

What is missing from the discussion is the ongoing build up of subs. And its not just China.
Posted by: Northern Cousin || 02/27/2013 18:58 Comments || Top||

#11  Shipman: Part of the problem with the Leyte Gulf comparison is that none of the 'jeep' carriers' aircraft were armed with armor-piercing bombs. They were all set up to do fire support of the Marines on the Beach, because Halsey thought he knew that those battleships were not a threat and that he needed to throw all the planes he had for that purpose against the Japanese carriers.
Posted by: Thing From Snowy Mountain || 02/27/2013 19:43 Comments || Top||


Europe
Former Mayor of Thessaloniki sentenced to life imprisonment in Greece
A court in the northern Greek city of Thessaloniki has convicted three of the city's former top officials and sentenced them to life imprisonment for embezzling 50 million euros from the municipality between 1999 and 2008.

A Thessaloniki criminal court on Wednesday ruled that the city's former mayor, Vassilis Papageorgopoulos, is guilty of embezzling almost 18 million euros from municipal coffers over the course of his two terms in office, handing him a sentence of life in prison.
What's that sentence in Euro-years: five?
Papageorgopoulos and 17 other officials stood trial for allegedly embezzling almost 52 million euros from the municipality's coffers, though the Thessaloniki court on Wednesday said that there was proof of 17.962 million euros having been misappropriated by the former mayor and his cohorts.

The Thessaloniki court on Wednesday also handed lesser guilty verdicts to the municipality's former general secretary, Michalis Lemousias, ex-cashier Panayiotis Saxonis and two more former directors of the municipality's financial services.

The other parties standing trial, including three former deputy mayors in charge of finances, were acquitted of all charges.
Posted by: tipper || 02/27/2013 13:40 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [298 views] Top||

#1  One hopes at least some of the missing funds will be recovered -- Greece could use a bit more of its own money at the moment.
Posted by: trailing wife || 02/27/2013 14:25 Comments || Top||


More on the Greek Gov't and it's Academi PSD contract
The Greek Gov't penned a contract with Academi (the new name for Blackwater) in November last year, though this was a secret agreement and you will not find details about it on the Academi website ). News of the contract leaked out end of January when the Greek ambassador to Canada, Leonidas Chrysanthopoulos, let slip about it in an interview, which was then published in a blog (see highlighted sentence in red). The contract with Academi was confirmed a few days later via the Greek military news site Defencenet.

Blackwater/Academi are infamous as the company that ran mercenary operations during the last Iraq War and were engaged in unnecessary fire fights in urban areas, taking civilian lives. They currently have a forward ops base in Afghanistan.

We understand their principal role in Greece is two-fold [actually threefold, but this is an UNCLAS forum]. One is to spy on oversee police operations. They have been contracted to do this because the Government are aware that the police have been comprehensively infiltrated by members of the fascist Golden Dawn and so cannot trust the police to stay loyal....or actively enforce Federal laws. Their other role is to act as a neutral force to provide full protection to the Government against assault from any quarter. In effect, the Greek Government is under siege by the little people.
Posted by: Chinelet Fleling9007 || 02/27/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [258 views] Top||

#1  A contract approved by the US State Department and probably funded by them as well. Greece is broke as I recall. Picking winners and loser once again, we've had such good luck in the past.

PSD = Personal Security Contract
Posted by: Besoeker || 02/27/2013 6:47 Comments || Top||

#2  Correction & apologies: Personal Security Detail (PSD)
Posted by: Besoeker || 02/27/2013 6:49 Comments || Top||

#3  Greek BlogSpot link w/highlight portion
Posted by: Besoeker || 02/27/2013 6:54 Comments || Top||


Fifth Column
Texas students dress in burqas, taught to call Muslim terrorists 'freedom fighters'
A Texas politician is launching an investigation after a high school teacher reportedly invited her female students to dress in burqas and refer to Moslem hard boyz as "freedom fighters."

State Sen. Dan Patrick told Fox News he is very disturbed by a Facebook photograph posted by one of the students in a world geography class at Lumberton High School, which showed them in Islamic garb. He also is investigating reports that the students were forced to write an essay based on an article in The Washington Post that blamed Egypt's turmoil on democracy rather than the Moslem Brüderbund.

"Parents are very sensitive to any issue that seems to be anti-American -- that blames democracy for some sort of trouble in the world," he told Fox.
"I felt like the line had been crossed," a parent of the daughter who posted the Facebook photo told Fox. "Christian kids who want to pray have to do it outside of school hours -- yet Islam is being taught to our kids during school hours."

The girl's father is confused why a geography class is teaching religion at all.

"She went from learning about Mexico to learning about Russia to learning about Islam," he told Fox. "Islam is not a country. Islam is not a continent."

The school district released a statement to Fox News defending the class: "The lesson that was offered focused on exposing students to world cultures, religions, customs and belief systems. The lesson is not teaching a specific religion, and the students volunteered to wear the clothing."
The parents contacted the principal, who defended the program required under CSCOPE, a controversial electronic curriculum system that provides online lesson plans for teachers, Fox News reports.

"This is the normal answer from every school using CSCOPE," said Janice VanCleave, the founder of Texas CSCOPE Review, which monitors what is being taught in the state's schools. "They are definitely promoting the Islamic religion."
Posted by: trailing wife || 02/27/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [272 views] Top||

#1  The local board of education may wish to redraw "the line" when the Burqa kiddies begin squatting on the sidewalks and defecating. Just say'n.
Posted by: Besoeker || 02/27/2013 6:42 Comments || Top||

#2  Or, Besoeker, when the boys start dressing in burkas and going into the girls' locker room...
Posted by: Glenmore || 02/27/2013 7:49 Comments || Top||

#3  "The lesson that was offered focused on exposing students to world cultures, religions, customs and belief systems. The lesson is not teaching a specific religion, and the students volunteered to wear the clothing."

How about some administrator and teacher cultural sensitivity training with a week in a North Korean Gulag environment. I'm sure you'll 'volunteer' too.
Posted by: Procopius2k || 02/27/2013 9:37 Comments || Top||

#4  Changes are coming. CSCOPE Changes. The only way that oversight and and changes can be brought about in an out-of-control educational system is for parents to exert pressure on the school system, the State regulatory agencies, elected representatives, the PTA, the school administrators. They should use the media that is sympathetic. Raise holy hell!
Posted by: JohnQC || 02/27/2013 9:59 Comments || Top||

#5  I don't know Besoeker - they (government) didn't seem to mind when the Occuturds did it.
Posted by: CrazyFool || 02/27/2013 11:47 Comments || Top||

#6  Very true CF.

Sorry I didn't respond sooner, I was watching the Champ on teevee tell the Rosa Parks and the mean ole bus driver story. As you might imagine, it's one of personal fav's.
Posted by: Besoeker || 02/27/2013 12:01 Comments || Top||

#7  ...and our "melting pot" continures on its inexorable(?) march towards becoming a dumpster....

Posted by: Uncle Phester || 02/27/2013 13:54 Comments || Top||

#8  ....or a cannibal's pot.
Posted by: Besoeker || 02/27/2013 14:22 Comments || Top||

#9  But that is in TEXAS and I assure you Governor Perry probably spit coffee all over his desk when he read this.

I expect some corrective action...rope...school administrators...tree. Some assembly required but then this is Texas and the good citizens will figure it out...the rope administrator tree thing.
Posted by: Bill Clinton || 02/27/2013 15:03 Comments || Top||

#10  Grandpappy told my pappy, back in my day, son
A man had to answer for the wicked that he done.
Take all the rope in Texas. Find a tall oak tree.
Round up all of them bad boys. Hang them high in the street
for all the people to see
Posted by: Glenmore || 02/27/2013 15:50 Comments || Top||

#11  What else are cross-pieces on lampposts for?
Posted by: CrazyFool || 02/27/2013 16:43 Comments || Top||


Home Front: Culture Wars
Gun Free Tax Day Bill Filed For Texas Independence Day
DALLAS -- Guns are already selling at record levels across Texas. The state ranks among the highest in firearm sales.

A Plano lawmaker now hopes to make it even more enticing for Texans to become gun owners. State Rep. Jeff Leach, a 30-year-old Republican from Plano, filed a bill to make Texas Independence Day (March 2nd) a tax-free holiday for guns and ammunition.

"Gun owners and gun manufacturers in Texas need to know that Texas stands behind them," Rep. Leach said on Monday. He said he filed his bill -- called the Texas Gun Ownership Reinforcement Act -- in response to calls to tighten federal gun laws.

"It isn't meant to be disrespectful," he explained. "I understand that the gun debate is hot right now, but that doesn't take away the fact we are guaranteed the right to keep and bear arms."

The idea is modeled on the state's tax-free weekend for clothes and school supplies before every school year.

The gun idea is not completely unheard of; other states have offered to skip sales taxes on firearms. South Carolina created and later abandoned such a program. In 2009, Louisiana lawmakers passed a "Second Amendment Sales Tax Holiday" on guns and ammunition that remains in effect. The tax-free weekend costs the state nearly $600,000 a year.

It's unclear how much money Texas coffers would lose under such a proposal, but Leach says it will likely be minimal.

"We need to be about encouraging and incentivizing lawful gun ownership in Texas, and this is what this is all about," Leach said.

The Plano lawmaker said his bill has wide support and has picked up 25 co-authors.
Posted by: Dino Shomomp7692 || 02/27/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [304 views] Top||

#1  "The tax-free weekend costs the state nearly $600,000 a year."

Really? i didn't know people money belong to the State.
With journalists leftist clique it is not surprising...
Posted by: Phaith Grique4599 || 02/27/2013 5:50 Comments || Top||

#2  It's unclear how much money Texas coffers would lose under such a proposal, but Leach says it will likely be minimal.

Unclear? Minimal?

Please pull up the large PPT Econ-101 quad-chart. Yes the one which displays low taxes, consumerism, and trade as representing the fok'n engines of successful economics and prosperity.

Second order benefits? Very good Schmedley :-) The UPS man WILL get some overtime, buy a new pickup truck or take his wife out to dinner. A second range master MAY need to be hired. Those new pistols may need trigger jobs and scope sales for the rifles could go up as well.
Posted by: Besoeker || 02/27/2013 6:09 Comments || Top||

#3  Tax free holiday for guns in Texas? The increase in firearm's sales will be good for the Texas economy.
Posted by: JohnQC || 02/27/2013 10:47 Comments || Top||

#4  Don't forget those of us who live 30 minutes away from Texas. Gas, food, outside monies.
Posted by: swksvolFF || 02/27/2013 11:39 Comments || Top||


India-Pakistan
Girl becomes KP's second polio victim this year
[Dawn] A three-month-old girl from Malakand district on Monday became this year's second polio
...Poliomyelitis is a disease caused by infection with the poliovirus. Between 1840 and the 1950s, polio was a worldwide epidemic. Since the development of polio vaccines the disease has been largely wiped out in the civilized world. However, since the vaccine is known to make Moslem pee-pees shrink and renders females sterile, bookish, and unsubmissive it is not widely used by the turban and automatic weapons set...
case in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa
... formerly NWFP, still Terrorism Central...

Local officials told Dawn that Khais, a resident of Umar Killey Badragai Union Council in Dargai tehsil of Malakand district, had tested positive for polio at National Institute of Health, Islamabad.

They said the tehsil hadn't reported any polio case for five years. The first polio case of the year in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa was reported on Feb 8 as a 13-month-old boy from Bannu district, Muzakar Khan, was diagnosed with polio.

The officials said no polio vaccination campaign had been carried out in the area for three months leaving many children, including the fresh polio sufferer, unimmunised.

According to them, last year, the province had 27 fresh polio cases, the highest number reported by any province in the country. Overall, the country's polio case tally was 58 last year.
Posted by: Fred || 02/27/2013 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [264 views] Top||


International-UN-NGOs
Federal Appeals Court rules Sea Shepherd's anti-whaling tactics amount to piracy
Rolled over to Wednesday. AoS.
*snork* Finally calling a spade a spade pirate.
After two months of delay, federal judges yesterday outlined their reasons for ordering an environmental group known for harassing whaling ships to stay 500 yards away from the vessels.

The San Francisco-based 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals issued a preliminary injunction against the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society in December, reversing a lower court ruling.

Chief Judge Alex Kozinski said the order was justified because Sea Shepherd's activities targeting Japanese boats near Antarctica amount to piracy.

"You don't need a peg leg or an eye patch," Kozinski wrote. "When you ram ships; hurl glass containers of acid; drag metal-reinforced ropes in the water to damage propellers and rudders; launch smoke bombs and flares with hooks; and point high-powered lasers at other ships, you are, without a doubt, a pirate, no matter how high-minded you believe your purpose to be."
Yee-ouch!
Kozinski, writing for the three-judge panel, said the researchers have the proper permits to comply with international whale hunting rules. The court sent the issue back to the district court for a trial and insisted that another judge be assigned to the case.
That's gonna leave a mark.
Love the part of the ruling about assigning it to another judge...
Link goes to the court decision (info in write-up not in publically available source yet).
Posted by: Barbara || 02/27/2013 14:27 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [392 views] Top||

#1  While I think whaling is barbaric, what Shepard's crew does is pure piracy. And they should be treated as pirates.

Build the gallows.
Posted by: DarthVader || 02/26/2013 14:40 Comments || Top||

#2  Sink 'em. Problem solved.
Posted by: Muggsy Mussolini1226 || 02/26/2013 14:46 Comments || Top||

#3  NO SHIT!!!
Posted by: Rob Crawford || 02/26/2013 16:41 Comments || Top||

#4  Regardless, Sea Shepherd┬'s acts fit even the district court┬'s constricted
definition. The projectiles directly endanger Cetacean┬'s crew, as the district court
itself recognized. And damaging Cetacean┬'s ships could cause them to sink or become stranded in glacier-filled, Antarctic waters, jeopardizing the safety of the crew.

The activities that Cetacean alleges Sea Shepherd has engaged in are clear instances of violent acts for private ends, the very embodiment of piracy. The district court erred in dismissing Cetacean┬'s piracy claims.
Posted by: john frum || 02/26/2013 17:30 Comments || Top||

#5  The district judge┬'s numerous, serious and obvious errors identified in our opinion raise doubts as to whether he will be perceived as
impartial in presiding over this high-profile case. The appearance of justice would
be served if the case were transferred to another district judge, drawn at random, and we so order in accordance with the standing orders of the Western District of Washington. The panel retains jurisdiction over any further appeals or writs
involving this case.

Posted by: john frum || 02/26/2013 17:32 Comments || Top||

#6  Ouch
Posted by: john frum || 02/26/2013 17:33 Comments || Top||

#7  We give words their ordinary meaning unless the context requires otherwise.
See Leocal v. Ashcroft, 543 U.S. 1, 8┬--9 (2004); Antonin Scalia & Bryan A.
Garner, Reading Law: The Interpretation of Legal Texts 69 (2012). The context
here is provided by the rich history of piracy law, which defines acts taken for
private ends as those not taken on behalf of a state. ... Belgian courts, perhaps the
only ones to have previously considered the issue, have held that environmental
activism qualifies as a private end. See Cour de Cassation [Cass.] [Court of
Cassation] Castle John v. NV Mabeco, Dec. 19, 1986, 77 I.L.R. 537 (Belg.). This
interpretation is ┬"entitled to considerable weight.┬" Abbott v. Abbott, 130 S. Ct.
1983, 1993 (2010) (internal quotation marks omitted). We conclude that ┬"private
ends┬" include those pursued on personal, moral or philosophical grounds, such as
Sea Shepherd┬'s professed environmental goals. That the perpetrators believe
themselves to be serving the public good does not render their ends public.

Posted by: john frum || 02/26/2013 17:39 Comments || Top||

#8  http://cdn.ca9.uscourts.gov/datastore/opinions/2013/02/25/1235266.pdf
Posted by: john frum || 02/26/2013 17:41 Comments || Top||

#9  Just great stuff you provided Rantburg John Frum, but where in all this is the part for punishment ..... You know where the pirate walks the plank, is keel-hauled, draw and quartered, made to eat week old, gas station sushi.

Jeez! Lets get to the fun part of the story.
Posted by: Jotch Clogum5083 || 02/26/2013 17:55 Comments || Top||

#10  The appearance of justice would be served if the case were transferred to another district judge, drawn at random, and we so order in accordance with the standing orders of the Western District of Washington...

The context here is provided by the rich history of piracy law, which defines acts taken for private ends as those not taken on behalf of a state. ...


It'd be rather interesting were there to be a discovery process regarding Sea Shepherd's sources of funding.
Posted by: Pappy || 02/26/2013 17:59 Comments || Top||

#11  Thanks to a $5,000,000 contribution from American television personality and icon Bob Barker, Sea Shepherd was able to quietly purchase and refit the former Norwegian whaler in Africa. The ice-strengthened, fast, chaser boat quietly departed from Mauritius on December 18th to join up with the Sea Shepherd ships Steve Irwin and Ady Gil in the Southern Ocean.

Barker has also funded the cost of a helicopter that will accompany the societys ships. The aircraft is named The Nancy Burnet after the president of United Activists for Animal Rights, an organization Barker also supports. This new helicopter will participate in future campaigns.

"I'm delighted to be able to help the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society in its mission to end the destruction of habitat and slaughter of wildlife in the worlds oceans," said Barker. "There is lot of talk about preserving our ecosystems and species, but this is one organization that puts these words into action."
Posted by: Jotch Clogum5083 || 02/26/2013 18:08 Comments || Top||

#12  Whoever, on the high seas, commits the crime of piracy as defined by the law of nations, and is afterwards brought into or found in the United States, shall be imprisoned for life. 18 USC ┬ž 1651 - Piracy under law of nations
Posted by: john frum || 02/26/2013 18:14 Comments || Top||

#13 

Hope that stands for Bob Barker and others who have funded this organization, co-conspirators and all.

The Price is Wrong Bob !
Posted by: Jotch Clogum5083 || 02/26/2013 18:32 Comments || Top||

#14  Have to throw in those associated within the Discovery Channel for being willing propagandists, with exclusive coverage of only one party and actively editing their video to further the cause of that party.

Worst pirate
worst pirate in the world
Posted by: swksvolFF || 02/26/2013 18:54 Comments || Top||

#15  Information Dissemination has a photo and brief, but pithy, comment here.
Posted by: Steve White || 02/26/2013 20:22 Comments || Top||

#16  Sue Barker and the Discovery Channel for any damages. They'll be gone in a flash...
Posted by: tu3031 || 02/26/2013 21:15 Comments || Top||

#17 
Posted by: Scooter McGruder || 02/27/2013 0:45 Comments || Top||

#18  9th District court in San Francisco?!!!!!
Posted by: Cheaderhead || 02/27/2013 5:36 Comments || Top||

#19  Sink or capture their boats summarily with no fanfare and all force required. Use Navy SEALS to eliminate the Sea Shepherd pirates in the same fashion as the Somali ones. Shoot their aircraft out of the sky.

Try Barker, despite his age, for piracy and incarcerate him, and sue him for damages. Any other person or organization who contributes to this is to be tried for piracy and possibly treason. Confiscate their assets.

Shut down the Discovery Channel and confiscate their physical plant and assets, if they do not desist immediately in being accessories to the crimes of piracy committed by Sea Shepherds.
Posted by: no mo uro || 02/27/2013 6:08 Comments || Top||

#20  Step 1: Photoshop the Sea Shepherd with a 5-inch gun mounted just forward of the bridge.

Step 2: Alert the Japanese Navy.

Step 3: Deny involvement.

Posted by: Besoeker || 02/27/2013 6:17 Comments || Top||

#21  I love reading Kozinsky opinions.
Posted by: Sgt. D. T. || 02/27/2013 10:43 Comments || Top||

#22  That bit about the district court making a ruling without any precedent or view of reality is spot on.

Launcing anti-personelle devices, destroying power and navigation, ramming, its older than Greeks vs. Persians.

And when some land-lubbing high plains Kansan is watching Discovery Channel's show and slapping his head at how gawdaweful the seamanship is, I have to wonder why anyone would even let them port.
Posted by: swksvolFF || 02/27/2013 11:27 Comments || Top||

#23  My wife would sing along with the opening set, something like:

My world is a hamburger
topped with melteee cheeese.
Side of tater tots
oozing of some greeease.

All I know is what would happen if I was out on a yacht and started launching stuff at a coast guard ship. Hell, if I threw an empty can at someone's boat out at there local pond there would be issues.
Posted by: swksvolFF || 02/27/2013 11:33 Comments || Top||

#24  "We conclude that ┬"private ends┬" include those pursued on personal, moral or philosophical grounds, such as Sea Shepherd┬'s professed environmental goals. That the perpetrators believe themselves to be serving the public good does not render their ends public."

This is good stuff. And may give "ECO warriors" and those that fund them a need to rethink. I am talking the tree huggers, tree-spikers, transportation stoppers and public road blockers and all those other wonderful people that cause damage to others in in their zest for their "cause".

I am afraid this case is not over though. It hasnt gone to trial yet. And the finding doesnt quite marry up with the The Law of the Sea Convention which is about the closest one gets to a modern definition of piracy. ie you need the offence to happen outside of national sea borders (check); you need a form of assault on another ship (check); and you normally need some kind of private financial gain. (its in effect- robbery at sea). Not so sure it's there. BUT I like the finding. Maybe they shouldnt have charged for their film footage for the media?


Posted by: Northern Cousin || 02/27/2013 19:34 Comments || Top||



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Two weeks of WOT
Wed 2013-02-27
  Syria Rebels Push into Police Academy as Jets Strike
Tue 2013-02-26
  Over 50 killed in battle for Syria police academy
Mon 2013-02-25
  Taliban suicide bombers hit Afghan cities, Kabul attack foiled
Sun 2013-02-24
  Karzai orders US special forces out of Afghan province
Sat 2013-02-23
  Syrian Rebels Claim To Seize Nuclear Facility
Fri 2013-02-22
  Boko Haram Denies Ceasefire, Pastes Threat Posters In Borno
Thu 2013-02-21
  Bombing in Indian Hyderabad, at least 11 killed
Wed 2013-02-20
  French nationals kidnapped in northern Cameroon
Tue 2013-02-19
  Mortars land near Syrian presidential palace
Mon 2013-02-18
  Five killed in attack at government office in Peshawar
Sun 2013-02-17
  Egyptian police publicly beat to death man suspected of killing officer
Sat 2013-02-16
  Bomb kills at least 20 in Pakistani city
Fri 2013-02-15
  Meteorite Hits Urals, Up to 500 Injured
Thu 2013-02-14
  Pakistan asks Taliban to announce 30-day cease-fire for talks
Wed 2013-02-13
  Syrian rebels say they captured military air base near Aleppo

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