Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Technical Note to the Last Post

There have been some questions about the source of the topographic map in the last post. Some readers have wondered whether the Belmont Club has access to a secret source of maps. Unfortunately not. I'll walk the reader through a step by step to show how it was obtained.

  1. Go to the Perry-Castaneda map collection at the UT (http://www.lib.utexas.edu/maps/iraq.html)
  2. Click on a link called Iraq - Topographic Maps, Soviet Military 1:200,000 Series (University of California, Berkeley)
  3. You will get to a key map with individual 1:200,000 maps. Click on 9:37-17 and 9:37-18 to obtain the maps for Abu Kamal and Al Qaim respectively. These are http://sunsite.berkeley.edu/EART/iraq/200k/I37_17.jpg and http://sunsite.berkeley.edu/EART/iraq/200k/I37_18.jpg. Unfortunately the maps are split at an awkward junction. 9:37-17 shows the Syrian side and 9:37-18 shows the Iraqi side. How to patch the maps together to see them in conjunction?
  4. Now comes the magic part. Open an image editing program and stitch the 9:37-17 and 9:37-18 together. Alternatively, print the both, cut the edges so that they are flush, tape the maps together with clear Scotchtape and scan. Then zoom in and crop out the part where the Euphrates crosses the border. You'll get the topo map provided in the last post.

Hope this solves the mystery.

With respect to the title of my last post, "Sword and Shield", it is not a reference to the KGB. Rather it is a reference to German armored tactics which had a defensive component ("shield") and an offensive component ("sword"). In this instance, it refers to operations "River Gate" and "Hunter" in particular, but more generally to the concept of defeating the insurgency using a combination of offensive and defensive aspects.

N.B. For a reference to the German "Sword and Shield" idea, see "SHIELD & SWORD TACTICS" at http://www.warfarehq.com/articles/cs_articles/88s.shtml


Blogger Tony said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

10/04/2005 05:18:00 PM  
Blogger Tony said...

Teaching people to think, that's kinda subversive.

10/04/2005 05:24:00 PM  
Blogger Andrew Scotia said...

Mea culpa, mea maxima culpa. I used an account I have, because of where I was at the time, to ftp into the map site and screwed up the sequencing. Twice.

When I couldn't get any ground reference points to the west and the master map seemed to indicate no overlap in the area of interest, I then thought of another archive to which I no longer have access.

I knew that Organs of the State in the USSR were custodians of all maps and imagery and that archive had maps formerly in official custody. It was common for the Sov's to supply clients one set of maps while reserving to themselves others that showed "sensitive" areas. I also knew that many of these things were on the master shopping list at the Collapse when dollars trumped State Security and had been borne home to the flagpole.

It was at that point that my CI lizard brain kicked in and I thought, why that rascal Wretchard has access to The Real Deal. I have since found out that the UC accessed archive is The Real Deal too. It's just that since I am currently only cleared for latrine rumors, I must have missed the declassification of the Real Deal maps.

Of course, I twitted Wretchard in a comment and emailed a couple of other people asking them to follow my logic. One of those people still has both access and a need to know. He emailed back telling me that I had f*****d up and that most of the former Sov oeuvre is now public with some exceptions.

Also, I know Hammer and Anvil and the Broken Wing Ambush/Kill Sack but when you say to me or any of my brothers in struggle, "Sword and Shield" we only know it as a euphemism for the other guys. It's just the kind of joke that I'd have made.

Wretchard, this may not be a compliment, but you do analysis at a highly professional level that is fully comensurate with that done by the people with the very nice offices. It is difficult for some of us with the lizard brain to believe that it is all Open Source.

Many times I have said to myself, now how the hell did he know that?

Didn't mean to cause a flap. I'll try to restrain myself in the future.

10/04/2005 07:48:00 PM  
Blogger Red River said...

Robert Kaplans new book, "Imperial Grunts:The American Military on the Ground" is fantastic. I was glued to it all the way to Chicago tonight. I usually read at 3 pages per minute, but had to slow to less than one with all the footnotes. One of the top five books I have read this year.

Iraq is one in a long string of US Engagements since the 70s of counter-insurgency. Compared against the Soviet/Cuban supported wars in El Salvador and Costa Rica, Iraq is chump change.

10/04/2005 10:21:00 PM  
Blogger ledger said...

I believe that Wretchard has the maps correct (if he had any help if was from his own mind). The action is a complex pincer action in a modern form. Wretchard has explained the action thoroughly (which many or may helpful to our side - but that is water under the bridge). Good work Wretchard.

Now, let me bring up a little know subject of huge proportions.

As most of you know during the recent Bali bombings a US citizen self-exploded via a bomb vest outside of a football stadium holding 84,000 people (the MSM deemed it a suicide by a "troubled engineering student").

The explosion splattered his body against buses, and walls. The device used was the classic TATP (hydrogen peroxide and fuel) belt strapped to his body. Although not well publicized, this holds foreboding implications of terrorists influence in the USA.

The reason I say that this is the first time a Caucasian US citizen has self-exploded close to a large crowd of people (a football game). The implications are that others will follow.

The "student" may well have converted to the radical Muslim teachings and planned to kill many US citizens (a true terror act after 9/11) or maybe have been duped into being a mule and was exploded by remote control - but who knows.

The young student apparently had a ME roommate and constructed a TATP bomb. He failed to gain entry to the football stadium containing 84,000 people because of his large backpack but, may have been interested in reentering - or entering a bus and self-exploding - somewhat like the London bombers.

Further, his location at the Oklahoma University is intriguing because other known 9/11 terrorists had ties to the area (OU has a big petrol chemical curriculum with many ME types attending) - more on that later.

The story has been down played by the MSM for various reasons. But, there is plenty of talk about the bombing on the net (some think MSM has down played the story because the FBI wants to smoke out the master minds). Now, to some details.

[picture of student with Muslim beard]

"The blast could be heard inside the stadium less than 100 yards away where more than 80,000 people attended OU's game against Kansas State. Joel Hinrichs Jr. said that his son did not leave a suicide note and that FBI agents told him hydrogen peroxide was used to construct the bomb."

See: Oklahoma student bomber

From reports it looks like a conjoined Bali bombing attempt. The significance is chilling because University of Oklahoma has a renowned Petrochemical curriculum which draws large amounts of Muslims to the Oklahoma University.

Further many FreeRepublic posters (Freepers) have linked Atta, Moussouri, and other 9/11 bombers to that area - including victim Nick Berg who was beheaded by terrorists and whose computer had links to Moussouri (possible from that area).

More to the point, Free Republic posters indicate that Joel Henry Hinrichs III, 21, attempted to enter the University of Oklahoma football stadium with a backpack but was turned away. He then may have strapped the bomb to his body on a bench outside of the stadium and it exploded leaving his legs as the only part of his body intact (it was difficult to ID him).

Some on the Free Republic board (Freepers) indicate that he was either manipulating the backpack or otherwise holding it close to his body when it detonated. Blood and body parts were splattered against a bus and surrounding walls. Initial pictures from area show the scorched mark where he was manipulating the device on a bench.

The FBI and the ATF removed significant explosive materials from his apartment and detonated them (freeper in the area indicate the explosions were very loud).

Some of the 'Freepers' indicate that significant jihad materials were removed from the bombers apartment at the time large amounts explosive materials were removed. Others report the bomber had a beard as if preparing for Ramadan.

Further, it seems as the Fraternity that the bomber was involved in was also used by Paki students as somewhat of a "safe-house" until 9/11 blew over in prior years:

"To: Rte66

...seems the Triangle Fraternity frat house had been asked by the dean of students to provide a "safe house" for Pakistani students until the 9-11 "stuff" blew over. Unfortunately, as most of you have found out, the Triangle Fraternity website is now taken down, except for the front page statement about Hinrichs. I couldn't follow whatever happened next and was too tired to try the Wayback Machine. Since Hinrichs didn't come to campus until 2002, I didn't think I would find much, but maybe someone wants to try the follow-up."

"Nice work.

see: Freeper post

Also, there are reports that the bomber lived with a Pakistani roommate who has now refused to talk (could be on his lawyer's advice).

[otter goose pictures of bombing site]

see: otter goose

Famboyant reports from the Northeast Intelligence Network

[photos of scorched cement were the bomber self-exploded]



"ABOVE: Location of Blast; Crime scene tape indicates where a heavy wooden bench sat prior to the detonation of the bomb carried by 21-year-old Joel Henry Hinrichs III near the O.U. Football Stadium where 84,000 were in attendance Saturday evening. (Consult video)."

[see above link]

Here are some Freeper posts which have solid links [some with pictures]:

see posts 3751

see: posts 3801

see post 3851

see post 3901

see post 3951

see post 4051

[note: this is an on going discussion and readers can follow the Freeper threads]

10/05/2005 01:32:00 AM  
Blogger ledger said...

repost of links:

See Bomber

see nice work

see otter goose pictures

see Famboyant reports from the Northeast Intelligence Network

10/05/2005 02:01:00 AM  
Blogger crobnson said...

A bit of additional info regarding:


But it looks like there may be an Islamic terror connection after all, according to WorldNetDaily:

Doug Hagmann, a seasoned investigator, told WND he was informed by multiple reliable law-enforcement sources familiar with the investigation into the incident that authorities recovered a "significant amount" of "jihad" materials, as well as Hinrichs’ computer.

Hagmann also said those same sources indicated police and federal agents "had pulled additional explosives from [Hinrichs’] house," including triacetone triperoxide, or TATP, "homemade explosive [that is] very potent but relatively easily manufactured."

TATP was also used in the July mass transit bombings in London, CNN reported, and was used by attempted bomber Richard Reid, who packed his shoes with the compound in an unsuccessful attempt to destroy a U.S.-bound American Airlines flight in December 2001.

10/05/2005 03:34:00 AM  
Blogger ledger said...

I have to agree with crobnson, the event is very troubling. It's shows has massive hole in the Homeland Security apparatus. If Hinrichs had somehow boarded an airliner with said explosives it surely would have destroyed the airplane and its passengers. The same goes if he successfully entered a football stadium pack with 84,000 people (a group of people destroyed in the blast and probably a stampede). Further, there does appear to be a terrorists element in Norman Oklahoma. The facts are impeachable.

Worse, there is considerable bomb making material on the web pertaining to TATP (two household cleaners and a drying device such as an oven). If one adds that to a few hard-core radical "clerics" it's an explosive situation. More Islamic jihad recruitment will follow. Further, copycat bombers could appear.

As to the Joel Henry Hinrichs bombing case, it's now clear that all principals involved have probably been legally advised by lawyers on how to slant their personal positions. Once all the players are lawyered-up it very difficult to break the case.

Most Freepers agree that Hinrichs had covered to Islam - or at least visited the local Islamic Mosque (a few blocks from his apartment). One can only hope it doesn't happen in multiplicity to other American kids.

As of yet, no indication of "suicide" was evident - a note or other evidence. The only thing found in his apartment was more explosive material (and possibly a large amount of Jihad material). This is very distrubing. If you have young college age children keep in touch with them.

10/06/2005 07:44:00 PM  

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