[WAPO] The New York Times reported July 10 on meetings between President Trump, his top advisers and private military and security company (PMSC) magnates, Erik Prince (founder of Blackwater) and Stephen A. Feinberg (owner of DynCorp International) to discuss plans for having contractors take over U.S. operations in Afghanistan. The plans are said to hew closely to the Wall Street Journal op-ed Erik Prince published in June proposing a "MacArthur solution" to Afghanistan. Like the historical analogy it borrows from, the plan proposes a U.S. viceroy, but unlike MacArthur, the viceroy would carry out his plans with the help of a private army.
Could such a plan actually improve counterinsurgency, leading to the success that has thus eluded the U.S. (and NATO)? In a word: no. And the plan is much more than a different strategy; it reformulates (one might say privatizes) U.S. goals.
General studies of PMSCs (though not focused on counterinsurgency, per se) begin to shed light on their overall impact on war. Looking at civil wars in Africa, only when there is competition among companies do PMSCs working for government and rebels have a positive effect on civil war termination. This suggests that we may not want the unified effort Prince envisions.
Data from Iraq show that competition is not enough. Only when there is competition joined by contracts with particular performance incentives do PMSCs reduce violence in an area. And using the Private Security Database (PSD) to focus on contracts between governments and PMSCs in failed or failing states -- notably applicable for Afghanistan -- is shown to increase conflict severity.
More detailed studies show that PMSCs work differently than military forces and should increase our skepticism of their counterinsurgency value. Different recruitment, motivation, rules, training and flexibility all contribute to a number of well-known concerns over misbehavior by individuals, PMSCs and the governments (and other clients) that contract with them. The International Code of Conduct (ICoC), Private Security Standards and other transnational regulatory efforts the U.S. has supported all limit PMSC behavior in ways that address these concerns by drawing PMSCs closer to common rules for public forces. (It is worth mentioning that a PMSC could not do some of what Prince calls for, like fighting alongside Afghan forces, without violating these regulations -- and the regulations are now required for private security providers working for the Pentagon in contingency operations abroad.)
If we listened to the democrats at WAPOO, we would never, ever win a war. Never listen to leftests about Foreign Policy. They are alien and of immature, less developed intelect as an average Homosapien or Caveman.
This is why they draw make up shit, pull it from their asses, and write it as hieroglyphics on the chalkboard walls of higher marxucation.
They command respect for doing nothing but contaminating the young minds with pinkey and the stalin - mental midget acrobatics.
I want to see every option, and I want US to win.
Stuff it up your safe space WAPO. I AM through with you.
General studies of PMSCs (though not focused on counterinsurgency, per se)... What studies? Ahh, General Studies by Top Men in the Field, Top men... Probably commuting between jobs in NGOs, Academia, and Government -- all distinctly anti-mercenary by inclination. ...begin to shed light on their overall impact on war. Looking at civil wars in Africa, only when there is competition among companies do PMSCs working for government and rebels have a positive effect on civil war termination.
War termination, eh? Looking at hows NGOs have assisted the endless prolonging of conflicts in the Post-WW2 Era -- should they be disbanded first?
Secondly, being able to hire more PMSCs implies a stronger country with more money. More resources implies greater chance of winning --- D'Oh!
This should tell you much about the author and origins of this article. Don't neglect the list of esteemed Korbel alumni:
The Josef Korbel School of International Studies at the University of Denver is a professional school of international affairs offering undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral degrees. It is named in honor of the founding dean, Josef Korbel, father of former U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright.
[RealClear Defense] This analysis recommends war. It is shocking to put to print. However, with North Korea’s inexorable advance towards developing a nuclear-tipped ICBM, we enter the realm of bad choices. On balance, war on the peninsula is the least bad alternative. There are some months left for a brilliant diplomatic breakthrough that turns North Korea from the brink ‐ these avenues must be energetically and exhaustively pursued. This analysis is presented on the fair assumption that such initiatives will fail.
This strategic assessment assumes one of two possibilities. First, that the U.S. accepts North Korea developing nuclear-tipped ICBMs capable of reaching the continental homeland, thereby allowing Pyongyang to achieve a stable deterrence relationship. Second, the U.S. seeks to disarm North Korea with a major military strike. Related possibilities such as a limited strike are ignored, as this overcomplicates matters and escalation should be assumed in any case.
In each scenario, I provide a range of consequences. Not all futures will come to pass, but some combination of these are a certainty and have a direct cause-and-effect relationship with the chosen course of action.
hmm.. a FH could lift an 1/3rd full Nerva to LEO and a second second fuel it. Then it could journey to start moving asteroid(s) with more fuel missions as needed. Hell tie it in with space mining and somewhere around the 3rd or 4th asteroid just have a loss of control...
...There is a flip side to this argument, however. It is not just that social codes and mores can act as a barrier to upward mobility by some. It is also possible that some people successfully enter the meritocracy through the mastery of these codes rather than mastery of any substantive set of skills. And that's how we have professors of physics who believe in AGW, professors of history who believe white men invented slavery, or professors of biomathematics who know neither biology nor mathematics. Never mind pols or journos.
I read Tyler Cowen’s blog a couple of times a week, despite the fact he banned me from his site. I mostly skim the comments looking for familiar names. There are a handful of commenters there that post interesting responses. Cowen is not all that interesting. He’s Thomas Friedman without the mega-rich wife. Here’s Friedman’s wife’s home, in which she permits him to live. Banal rump-swabbery pays well, but not as well as marrying the daughter of a billionaire, so Cowen remains a junior rump-swab.
Looking for material, I stumbled upon this in Cowen’s links. It’s not a very interesting article, so don’t bother reading it. What is interesting is the author is a guy named Reihan Salam and he wants to reorganize American politics to be more like some place not called America, perhaps his home country of Bangladesh. Proportional representation has always been antithetical to the American creed, because it breeds the sort of tribalism and sectarianism a continental sized country can never afford.
One of the reasons many of us gave up on conventional politics is that in the mainstream, guys with weird, unpronounceable names, from foreign lands keep demanding we change our country to suit their needs. That would be tolerable if the response was “shut up and learn how to be Americans.” Instead, the political class goes out of its way to celebrate these people. Our rulers make it clear that the opinions of newly arrived boat people count for more than the opinions of the natives, who made the country possible.
Continued on Page 49
- David Brooks made the comment in a piece titled, How We Are Ruining America I suspect more a "how-to" than a series of observations.
- The 55-year-old writer was trying to discuss informal social barriers in society
- 'Recently I took a friend with only a high school degree to lunch. Insensitively, I led her into a gourmet sandwich shop,' he wrote, kicking off the awkward story
- He recounted how his friend was seeming put-off by item names on the menu
- 'I quickly asked her if she wanted to go somewhere else and she anxiously nodded yes and we ate Mexican,' he wrote, wrapping up the strange anecdote
I think the bigger problem with the elite/upper class wanting the best for their children is the GIVERnment always taxing to ensure the top does not get to far ahead. See GIVERnment growth in pre-school- college education, medical benefits, diversity programs....
Pretentious names to obscure and feed one's ego with a faux sense of cultural elevation.
The real codes to social elevation are found in behaviors. Self discipline, delayed gratification, responsibility et al. All those things the Progressives have spent decades debasing while promoting destructive ego centric perspectives.
notice how with the Brits you can tell social status from accent?
Just not the Brits. Americans have some of that too. Give me equal candidates for a job, a black Nigerian or West Indies candidate who speaks the mother tongue (see - Charles, PoW) has a big edge. Its a bit of ingrained bias. Notice the hate 'fun' the media/entertainment/political complex have with the accents of Bush, Palin, and Trump.
Status rules are partly about collusion, about attracting educated people to your circle, tightening the bonds between you and erecting shields against everybody else. We in the educated class have created barriers to mobility that are more devastating for being invisible. The rest of America can’t name them, can’t understand them. They just know they’re there.
Tribes. Encouraged by the worst president ever and supported by the progressives.
Is the sandwich shop confusion really about class so much as New York vs everyone else? Go into a trendy coffee shop and you'll be knocked back for a minute trying to decipher the menu that is basically a hundred flavors of coffee.
Not just that, what if she has cultural aversions to certain ingredients.
And what is this educated class deal? Perhaps he should come out here and take a visit to the implement yard with my uneducated friend and pick out every piece of machinery necessary for a wheat harvest, necessary for this striata baguette.
Did Mr. Brooks take a college level class on Italian Food? A person would just about have to for all the meats, cheeses, pasta shapes. Ohhh...that is a VoTech topic, tut tut.
What is telling to me is his writing accent. He goes on like he discovered a new element, and everyone else sees butt fumble.
The entertainment industry, which Brooks is a part of, is the worst perpetrator of oratory and behavioral stereotypes. This...newspeak, if you will, the oratory of the broadcaster in comparison to the real world, is about as exciting as I-70 across Kansas.
And I can only imagine the selections available at the type of gourmet Italian sandwich shop the like Mr. Brooks would show off to a friend. She is the one who got out of her comfort zone...Sure, Italian sounds fine...holy crap is this one page of just the meats?...Line is getting anxious...oh great, now friend is embarrassed he brought me.
As the Grand Marshal of the Supreme Court assembles the posse of Bailiffs, Trumpeters and Attendants, the Learned Scribes are generating the Official Law Warrant of Justice to arrest Donald Trump Jr. for High Treason, which they will do after marching to the White House on a carpet of rose petals strewn by Fair Maidens.
Or something. Whatever. The Menscian media is in a spazz yet again.
...Let me break down how this is going to end. Liberals are going to gobble yet another Treason Viagra and the hot chick of success is gonna let them buy her a pricy dinner and then smile and say "Let's just be friends."
I would almost feel sorry for them if they weren’t a bunch of evil, aspiring fascists who want to turn all of America into Evergreen College.
...Do you think this latest nonsense is going to stop Trump, by which I mean the people who support him? Do you think the normal people in America are thinking "Gosh, a campaign tried to get negative information about its opponent? I'm shocked and stunned and emotionally ruined. I don't know where to turn or what to do. I guess I better support a bunch of liberal fascists who want to take my money and my power and my guns and who boo God."
[CNBC] William Browder, co-founder of Hermitage Capital, which specializes in Russian markets, said on CNBC's "Power Lunch" he has had numerous threats on his life and "nobody should get involved in that country."
Browder said the threats stemmed from legislation he has lobbied for aimed at sanctioning officials believed to be involved in the death of Russian Sergei Magnitsky.
He also said he knows Natalia Veselnitskaya, the Russian lawyer who met with Donald Trump Jr., and that she "had an agenda coming from the top of the Russian government."
Excerpt: Browder had previously remarked to The New York Times, that "[b]asically, there is a trail of dead and seriously injured people leading from the Magnitsky case." I asked him whether he worried about his own safety, especially in light of recent events. He still receives a number of direct and indirect death threats, he says. They are, he said, "from the Russian government." I asked him to clarify whether he meant the Russian mob. "You're making a mistake that a lot of Americans make," he explained, saying there is "not a difference between government and organized crime in Russia." I guess maybe it's too many Goodfellas movies but the American perception is that the mob is a bunch of guys walking around in leather jackets killing people. The difference is, Browder says, that in Russia today, "it's people walking around in Armani suits - and they work for the Ministry of the Interior."
[The Donald] A Timeline of Russia Bullshit: Natalia Veselnitskaya, Emin Agalarov, Obama's Russian Ambassador Michael McFaul, John McCain, Debbie Wasserman Schultz, Seth Rich, Julian Assange, John Podesta, and the ones who tie it all together for the DNC - the Media
[DAWN] TEN years ago today, militancy in Pakistain took a darker and more ominous turn. On July 12, 2007, the army’s siege of the Lal Masjid ...literally the Red Mosque, located in Islamabad and frequented by all sorts of high govt officials. The proprietors, Ghazi Abdul Rasheed and Maulana Abdul Aziz Ghazi, unleashed their Islamic storm troopers on the city, shutting down whorehouses and beating people up who weren't devout enough. The Musharraf govt put an end to the nonsense by besieging the place. Abdul Aziz Ghazi was nabbed while he was trying to escape dressed up like a girl. BBC reported that the corpse count at 173, but other claims, usually hysterical, say there were up to 1000 titzup. Among their number was Abdul Rashid Ghazi. Everyone then said tut-tut and what a nice guy he had been... religious complex in Islamabad went kaboom! into a pitched battle that lasted several hours. The encounter, which saw commandos storming the complex and fighting heavily armed holy warriors from room to room, left at least 100 forces of Evil dead, including Lal Masjid’s charismatic deputy imam Abdul Rashid Ghazi, and claimed the lives of 11 armed forces personnel. Aided by a huge stockpile of weapons inside, the long stand-off and the bloody denouement illustrated the tenacity of anti-state elements determined to fight to the death. The conclusion of the assault also brought to an end the moral vigilantism unleashed by Lal Masjid’s ’vice’ squads across the capital.
On the face of it, Operation Sunrise was a triumph for the state, a demonstration of its fearsome power. Soon enough though, it became clear that it was more of a pyrrhic victory for the state, but an enduring one for the murderous Moslems. A mishandled operation that resulted in a large number of fatalities, the siege proved to be a propaganda coup for the murderous Moslems. Instead of being a deterrent, it catalysed violent bully boyz -- already in revolt against the state following what they saw as a betrayal of the jihadist cause after 9/11 -- to unite under the umbrella of the Tehrik-e-Taliban ...Arabic for students... Pakistain. Terrorist attacks, particularly suicide kabooms, saw a marked escalation. Now that a decade has passed, and kinetic operations have dismantled much of the murderous Moslem infrastructure, it is time to reflect upon what lessons have been learnt. After all, the siege was not inevitable: it need not have come to pass had the state not winked at radical elements establishing a stronghold in the very heart of Pakistain’s capital. It acted belatedly after the situation had spiralled out of control. However, nothing needs reforming like other people's bad habits... even today, many madressahs are run by religious organizations whose allegiance to Lion of Islam ideologies should be cause for concern -- some of them are even on the interior ministry’s watch list. Resisting government oversight, they cultivate in their students the same radical mindset that has already proven so costly for the nation. And even though Lal Masjid’s Shuhada Foundation was rightly denied permission to hold a remembrance ceremony for the ’deaders’ of the siege, it illustrates how the ultra right continues to push the boundaries. The question is: are we pushing back hard enough?
Posted by: Fred ||
07/13/2017 00:00 ||
Top|| File under: Govt of Pakistan
[DAWN] For a sitting prime minister, there could not have been a more damning indictment. The report of the joint investigation team (JIT) has charged the Sharif family on several counts -- from perjury and faking documents to hiding their sources of wealth and living beyond their means. Predictably, Nawaz Sharif ... served two non-consecutive terms as prime minister, heads the Pakistain Moslem League (Nawaz). Noted for his spectacular corruption, the 1998 Pak nuclear test, border war with India, and for being tossed by General Musharraf... has refused to bow out and has vowed to take the battle to the end. Now it is left to the Supreme Court to decide his fate.
One is not quite sure how long it will take to wind up the case. But it is certainly going to be a messy endgame with the possibility of the third-term prime minister having to stand trial on criminal charges and being ousted by the court. The ensuing legal battle may drag on for long thus further deepening the political polarisation in the country. The outcome of this historical judicial action is bound to completely change the political dynamics and may well be the beginning of the end of the Sharif era.
Another shock for Sharif is that the JIT report has also alleged that his daughter Maryam Nawaz, who has long been groomed as his heir apparent, has falsified documents. This may have doomed the family’s plan for the transition of power to the second generation to failure. It was evident that such a detailed investigation into the family’s foreign assets had caught the prime minister by surprise.
Although the government had sensed the seriousness of the investigation at the end, it still appeared confident that at least the prime minister would scrape through with only some burn marks. A story published in a national daily on July 10, hours before the submission of the JIT report to the Supreme Court, and headlined to the effect that the investigation didn’t find the prime minister guilty, in fact reflected the government’s miscalculation. The government had certainly not expected such a sweeping indictment that has left the country’s most powerful political leader politically and morally damaged.
Posted by: Fred ||
07/13/2017 00:00 ||
Top|| File under: Govt of Pakistan
[DAWN] AFTER a gruelling military campaign, Iraq’s second largest city of djinn-infested Mosul ... the home of a particularly ferocious and hairy djinn... has been retaken by the government. On Monday, Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi declared that the ’liberation’ of Mosul was complete -- three years after this historic city had been overrun by the hordes of the murderous MoslemIslamic State ...formerly ISIS or ISIL, depending on your preference. Before that al-Qaeda in Iraq, as shaped by Abu Musab Zarqawi. They're very devout, committing every atrocity they can find in the Koran and inventing a few more. They fling Allah around with every other sentence, but to hear the pols talk they're not really Moslems.... group. However, the way to a man's heart remains through his stomach... the pictures emerging from Mosul are ones of devastation, showing a grey landscape filled with rubble and debris. The human toll has been even greater, with hundreds of thousands of Mosul’s people displaced, while hundreds have been killed either by IS gunnies or in the crossfire. Of course, Mosul’s recapture is highly symbolic as it is a major urban centre, while it was in the city’s Nuri mosque -- now reduced to rubble -- that His Supreme Immensity, Caliph of the Faithful and Galactic Overlord, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi ...formerly merely the head of ISIL and a veteran of the Bagram jailhouse. Looks like a new messiah to bajillions of Moslems, like just another dead-eyed mass murder to the rest of us... declared his ’caliphate’. However, the way to a man's heart remains through his stomach... while the ’caliphate’ may be falling apart, IS’s ability to cause havoc remains considerable. Observers are of the view that the terrorist outfit may increase its guerrilla tactics after losing Mosul, while it also retains territory elsewhere in Iraq.
Apart from consolidating its gains against IS, the government in Baghdad should work towards ensuring that Mosul is rehabilitated at the earliest. Part of this rehabilitation must, of course, encompass the rebuilding of infrastructure and institutions. However, the way to a man's heart remains through his stomach... the Iraqi state must also ensure that communal relations are handled carefully. Mosul is a Sunni-majority city, while much of the Iraqi army consists of Shia troops. The militias that supported the army in recapturing Mosul are also almost entirely Shia. The government must ensure that there are no ’Dire Revenge’ attacks and that steps are taken to promote harmony among Mosul’s different communities. The gunnies of IS had in the past exploited communal differences to pit various groups against each other. They must not be given this chance again, which is why the state must work to build bridges between communities as part of the rehabilitation of Mosul.
Posted by: Fred ||
07/13/2017 00:00 ||
Top|| File under: Islamic State
[New African] With large sections of the world hostile to Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu, is increasingly looking to Africa to fill the void. Last year Netanyahu courted Uganda, Kenya, Rwanda and Ethiopia and this year he has addressed an ECOWAS summit in Liberia. This week he welcomes Rwandan President Paul Kagame to Israel on an official visit. What is Israel looking for in Africa?
A multi-volume chronology and reference guide set detailing three years of the Mexican Drug War between 2010 and 2012.
Rantburg.com and borderlandbeat.com correspondent and author Chris Covert presents his first non-fiction work detailing
the drug and gang related violence in Mexico.
Chris gives us Mexican press dispatches of drug and gang war violence
over three years, presented in a multi volume set intended to chronicle the death, violence and mayhem which has
dominated Mexico for six years.