Saturday, April 15, 2006

Below the fold

Three very interesting reports from the Middle East. The first, from the Jerusalem Post describes an Israeli proposal to swap Jonathan Pollard for .... Marwan Barghouti.

Officials in Jerusalem claimed on Saturday that the US would free imprisoned Israeli spy Jonathan Pollard in exchange for Israel releasing jailed Fatah leader Marwan Barghouti.

According to Army Radio, Israel is set to offer the proposed prisoner swap deal in the next few months, following the unfolding anarchy in the Palestinian Authority. Seemingly, Israel intends to use Barghouti's release to strengthen the Fatah movement against the background of the much criticized rule of the new Hamas-led Palestinian government.

The second report  is even more interesting, and also from the Jersualem Post.

Sources close to Jonathan Pollard - the Israeli agent imprisoned in the United States - warned on Friday that if Gil Pensioners' Party Chairman Rafi Eitan would be appointed a minister in Interim Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's government, Pollard would release classified information that could be harmful to Israel.

They claimed that the information would be detrimental to every former Israeli prime minister, including senior Kadima MK Shimon Peres, Channel 2 reported. Pollard is serving a life sentence after being charged with selling American state secrets to Israel. His operator was Rafi Eitan who served in the Mossad at the time.

The third is from the Times of London.

April 16, 2006 -- US plots ‘new liberation of Baghdad’

THE American military is planning a “second liberation of Baghdad” to be carried out with the Iraqi army when a new government is installed. Pacifying the lawless capital is regarded as essential to establishing the authority of the incoming government and preparing for a significant withdrawal of American troops.

Strategic and tactical plans are being laid by US commanders in Iraq and at the US army base in Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, under Lieutenant- General David Petraeus. He is regarded as an innovative officer and was formerly responsible for training Iraqi troops. The battle for Baghdad is expected to entail a “carrot-and-stick” approach, offering the beleaguered population protection from sectarian violence in exchange for rooting out insurgent groups and Al-Qaeda.

There are many more details in the Times story. Those who have been following the pattern of US casualties will have noted that a whole bunch of extra casualties are coming in from MND-Baghdad. Of the 40 combat deaths this month, 12 involve Multinational Division, Baghdad. The mention of a possible "Battle of Baghdad" will not surprise those following recent posts on the Belmont Club.

The idea of swapping Pollard for Barghouti being bruited in Israeli circles will ring every conspiracy bell in the Middle East. Just what does Pollard have over Olmert's government? If he had something all along why could he not blackmail Olmert's predecessor in Kadima, Ariel Sharon? Why have his cards become so much more powerful? And why should Barghouti be so valuable to the US that it would reverse the policy of keeping Pollard in jail to secure his release?

There are lots of missing pieces in both these stories. End of history? It's only just begun.

234 Comments:

Blogger Dave H said...

Strange indeed. One would think that Pollard would try to use knowledge to try to obtain release, say the US agreed to this deal, released Pollard, Israelis appoint Eitan, does Pollard then squawk? I would not think he would live long enough after release, to do much squawking. He seems to me to be trying to kill the deal, whatever he knows it looks like he thinks he might be safer in a US Federal Prison.

4/15/2006 11:14:00 PM  
Blogger rufus said...

Maybe it'll be some real shocker, like they spied on us, sold air defense technology to China, and gave us bum information on the whereabouts of Saddam's WMDs. Ah, surely not!

4/15/2006 11:51:00 PM  
Blogger 2164th said...

A Pollard release will convince everyone that the US political establishment is owned, directed, manipulated and coerced by the "Amen chorus of the Israeli lobby". In the course of human history," Never have so many done so much for so few for so little and at such extraordinary cost".

Release Pollard and expose what a strategic liability Israel is to the United States. Where is Buchanan?

4/16/2006 02:41:00 AM  
Blogger 2164th said...

And if the Pollard story has not aggravated the living crapowitz out of you, the Sunday Telegraph has an outline of the Iranian strategy. This is a mandatory formation:

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/opinion/main.jhtml?xml=/opinion/2006/04/16/do1609.xml

4/16/2006 02:56:00 AM  
Blogger 2164th said...

And since I seem to be the only one that has already found my Easter basket, Wretchard's post to The Times article includes a scary little paragraph discussing tactics on an impending police action in Baghdad...

"According to defense sources the Americans could augment their forces with heavily armed AC-130 aircraft and F-16s. But close air support is more likely to be provided by Cobra and Little Bird helicopters to minimize casualties."

That sounds like a winning combination to win hearts and minds.

4/16/2006 03:29:00 AM  
Blogger Tony said...

Here's another interesting story from the area: Missile in Iranian exercise underscores extent of guided-weapons ties between Tehran and Beijing in the most recent Aviation Week, 04/10/2006, page 33.

I know some Belmonteers are relatively sanguine about China, and their massive naval and missile build-up, but it's stories like this that suggest to me that not only are they NOT our pals in the future, they are not our pals NOW.

Iran's tactical missile capability continues to benefit from Chinese support, with Tehran revealing during a military exercise last week that it has acquired a radar-guided version of the Chinese C-701 antiship missile.

A shore-launched firing of the C-701 variant was carried out during large-scale exercises. Moreover, Iran last week test-fired the Noor antiship missile, a version of the Chinese C-802. It was the first helicopter launch for the weapon, say Iranian military officials. The launch platform is believed to have been a Mil Mi-17. The sea-skimming missile has a range of about 200 km. (124 mi.).

. . .

During the recent exercise, Iran displayed what it claimed were several recently developed capabilities. Given the heightened tensions between Iran and the West over Tehran's nuclear ambitions, the exercise was partly intended to be a show of force.

The exercise included the test-firing of a high-speed torpedo, very similar to the Russian Shkval. While Iran claims this is an indigenous system, its strong resemblance to the Russian one is noteworthy. The defense ministry also says it has test-launched an improved intermediate-range ballistic missile, likely a Shahab 3 version.

While Iranian reports of the missile's features were unclear, references to its "radar-evading" capabilities could reflect the development, or acquisition, of some form of decoy package that deploys along with the warhead.


Hmmmm, what's that? A decoy package that deploys along with the warhead.... It doesn't seem likely, but could that trick have anything to do with the highly classified technology that Hughes and Loral paid record fines for sharing with the Chinese during the 90's? I know, the illegal technology transfer had to do with shroud deployment and delivery of multiple payloads in orbit (MIRV-ish?) and this is the Shahab, but, how can anyone possibly view the Chinese as our pals, or even neutral in our confrontation with Iran?

Some may ask, how is this different than the French selling the Exocet to Iraqis (that hit the USS Stark on May 17, 1989)? Or the French selling the Super Etenards and the Exocets that destroyed the HMS Sheffield on May 4, 1982?

All may be fair in love and war, but let's not confuse the two.

4/16/2006 05:07:00 AM  
Blogger Sir Glubb said...

The US should release Pollard alright.

Release him in the middle of the Gaza strip and let his self-serving, traitor ass E&E to Israeli territory.

4/16/2006 05:10:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Page 1: Lt. Gen. Petraeus is the Exit Plan

Page 2: Rebuilding Iraqi Forces From the Top Down

Page 3: "It's our country, it's our culture, and we have different laws than you do."

Page 4: Aiming to get US Forces Home

---
Inside Iraq’s Mutant Security Agency

"What you have now is no transparency," says Matthew Sherman, a U.S. official who advised four Iraqi ministers before he left the country late last year. The militias, he adds, "are slowly gaining control of the [state security] apparatus."

4/16/2006 05:27:00 AM  
Blogger 2164th said...

Tony said...

"I know some Belmonteers are relatively sanguine about China, and their massive naval and missile build-up, but it's stories like this that suggest to me that not only are they NOT our pals in the future, they are not our pals NOW."

China has been enjoying the lack of US focus on them. They have accurately determined that their interests are best served while US disipates itself elsewhere. The US can never afford military conflict with China but the US should make Chinese strategic military gains come at full market price.

4/16/2006 05:29:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

In the Company of Soldiers: A Chronicle of Combat,"
Atkinson follows Maj. Gen. David H. Petraeus, commander of the 101st, from Kuwait to Baghdad
---
Philadelphia, PA
I admit that I was one of those people that thought the news media was 'quagmiremongering' with their negative coverage at that time. The question is -- will Petraus' admission to you then (and published now) cause him problems with the Pentagon with his career? I would have picked him to be the next Chief of Staff of the Army.

Rick Atkinson: I'd like to think that candor and human feelings are seen as an asset in a general. Here's the bottom line for me, as the father of a 20-year-old son and an 18-year-old daughter: is this a caring, competent commander in whose custody you would feel comfortable commiting the life of your child? The answer with Gen. Petraeus, in my judgment, is absolutely.

4/16/2006 05:29:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Appointment with the General
Mosul, where Petraeus is headquartered, is a majority Sunni Arab town where attacks on U.S. forces occur daily and where Saddam's sons were gunned down in July
---
The briefing becomes seductive. There's a sense of enormous coordination, energy, and accomplishment. As General Petraeus speeds through slide after slide, I am truly impressed. A report on the status of the military intranet communications network. Air and ground movements of troops and their machines. How many people called "The Hotline" in the last 24 hours providing tips and leads. What's the press up to? There's a slide on our crew's movements throughout the day, and relevant reports from the international press on 101st activities.

A few times Petraeus will stop to read more closely and with his pointer circle a sentence, paragraph, pie chart, or graph, and exhort better performance or suggest changes. "Who's going out to photograph this project?" he asks.
The officer names someone. Petraeus pauses. "You're breaking my heart."
A long pause. Then the officer:
"I will see what I can do."
The general had someone else in mind.

Petraeus: "Why aren't we digging more wells?"
Officer: "Because we're out of money."
Pause.
"Are you not willing to take a risk?"
"Not if we're out of funds."
Another pause.
The message is clear.
The general doesn't tolerate this.
Dig anyway, he is saying. The money will come.
"Dig."
The final slide says: "We are in a race to win over the people. What have you and your element done today?"

---
(Chalabi and the Governor show up to drone on)
...When Chalabi ends his speech, Governor al-Basso begins one of his own)

"I think I understand how it works, " I tell General Petraeus as I slip the microphone off his uniform. "Whoever speaks the longest wins." The general winks at me in agreement. Later he tells us, "That's Democracy 101."

4/16/2006 05:31:00 AM  
Blogger wretchard said...

Here's interesting background to the Johnathan Pollard case. The item that stands out is:


"There were press reports at the time of the Camp David 2000 Summit that Clinton had offered to pardon and release Pollard as an inducement to then-Prime Minister Ehud Barak to enter into an agreement with the Palestinians, but nothing ever came of it. There were also rumors that Pollard was among the many whom Clinton considered for a Presidential pardon on his last day in office, January 20, 2001."


That speaks volumes. Pollard's sentence, plus the classified Cap Weinberger classified memorandum, already suggests that Pollard's importance is greater than it would seem. The idea that Pollard would be worth a major political concession from Israel reinforces that impression. And unlike most spies, his value, rather than declining with time as is often the case with secrets which are perishable actually seems to be increasing! It's tantalizing. Why should Pollard be so valuable to Israel? The latest stories suggest Pollard is more dangerous to Israel than he was to the US. Yet when they had the chance, Israel refused him asylum. What gives?

4/16/2006 05:37:00 AM  
Blogger 2164th said...

It could be as simple as there being some in Israel who have come to the conclusion that a Pollard release would come with too much bad US reaction.

4/16/2006 05:52:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Manila's Arroyo Commutes All Death Sentences

4/16/2006 05:53:00 AM  
Blogger Tony said...

What did Pollard give the Israelis that was so much more valuable than what Loral and Hughes gave China?

Doesn't this give the game away? Seemingly, Israel intends to use Barghouti's release to strengthen the Fatah movement against the background of the much criticized rule of the new Hamas-led Palestinian government.

The Wikipedia Jonathan Pollard seems to say he gave away something like Echelon, twenty years ago. How can that still be so valuable?

4/16/2006 06:02:00 AM  
Blogger CatoRenasci said...

If the US releases Pollard, it will absolutely destroy any credibility we have as other than a tool of the Israelis.

I support defending Israel, and support Bush and the war wholeheartedly, but Pollard was a traitor to the United States of America, which placed its trust in him. His motives, and the fact that Israel is an ally, mean absolutely nothing. He should NEVER see the light of day.

This would possibly be the worst decision the Bush administration could make.

4/16/2006 06:09:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

OT: where is Buddy?
---hint:
One of the most discussed YouTube clips lately features a young woman who calls herself pizzelle2 watching a video of another YouTube user, who is watching another YouTuber, and so on. The video's recursiveness goes several steps deeper, until it reaches the promised land: the Wausau home of a 24-year-old woman known as Nornna, top right.

Nornna's videos, which number in the hundreds, are hardly salacious. Usually she is doing something completely commonplace: making a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, powdering her feet, missing her bus, watching television. Some videos of Nonna, shown above at top, have been viewed more than 50,000 times. As her videos gained an audience, her fans started posting videos of themselves watching Nornna, and the momentum was unstoppable.

The first Nornna-watching video was posted by James98105
In his video, titled "Me eating and watching Nornna while she watches Chicken Litt," he eats crackers while watching Nornna watch the movie "Chicken Little."
LINK

4/16/2006 06:16:00 AM  
Blogger Mətušélaḥ said...

Jonathan Pollard provided Israel with technical specs of Russian hardware acquired by the US. This proved instrumental in the Lebanon campaign, Operation Peace for Galilee, as it gave Israel the necessary technical info to defeat Russian SA missile batteries installed in the Bekka valley. Once the Russian SAM systems were defeated, Israel had a free hand dismantling the Syrian air force with it's Python AA missiles.

Pollard maintains that he provided only information which, at the time, he believed was vital to Israeli security and which was being withheld by The Pentagon, in violation of a Memorandum of Understanding between the two countries regarding the sharing of vital security intelligence. According to Pollard, this included data on Soviet arms shipments to Syria, Iraqi and Syrian chemical weapons, the Pakistani atomic bomb project, and Libyan air defense systems.

What am I missing?

4/16/2006 06:36:00 AM  
Blogger diabeticfriendly said...

The USA captures spies from all countries, some friendly, some hostile.

The USA makes exchanges with ENEMIES and friends alike.

Israel spies on countries, as does everyone one of our Allies, the USA spies on Israel, as well as the USA spying on all of our friends and enemies.

What did Pollard actually do? Was his sentence in line with other convicted spies?

As for Israel exchanging an Arab Murderer for something, Israel has released, traded thousands of arabs for nothing but a zip lock of remains and a crack dealer....

Specifically the Pollard case, we need to have the information out to make a judgment.

4/16/2006 06:39:00 AM  
Blogger Immanuel Goldstein said...

Every once in a half-dozen years, there's a rumour in the press about Pollard being released.

4/16/2006 06:42:00 AM  
Blogger diabeticfriendly said...

In 1985, Pollard's superiors at the Navy Field Operational Intelligence Office (NFOIO) in Washington, D.C. grew suspicious of Pollard's conduct. Stacks of classified documents unrelated to his work were repeatedly found in his office. The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) was soon called in to investigate, and they arrested Pollard in November 1985. Any hopes of keeping the scandal under wraps were dashed when Pollard attempted to flee arrest by requesting asylum at the Israeli embassy, as originally ordered by his Israeli handlers from the Lekem (his controller was Rafi Eitan, former head of Lekem.) The Israeli embassy nevertheless refused to grant Pollard and his wife asylum, and Pollard was subsequently apprehended by the FBI.
Israel paid Pollard tens of thousands of dollars for his spying, but he claims not to have been motivated by money. Exactly what information he gave to Israel has still not been officially revealed. Press reports cited a secret 46-page memorandum, provided to the judge by Secretary of Defense Caspar Weinberger, describe Pollard's spying as including, among other things, obtaining and copying the latest version of Radio-Signal Notations, a 10-volume manual detailing America's global electronic surveillance network. (Edwin Black, "Why Jonathan Pollard is Still in Prison"; Seymour Hersh, [1]) This memorandum was leaked to the press, but Pollard's attorneys were denied access and this may have affected their ability to conduct his defense. In a 2002 letter to IMRA, U.S. District Court Judge George N. Leighton wrote:
"At the time Mr. Pollard was sentenced in March of 1987, the court placed under seal approximately forty pages of material filed in the court's docket. These included portions of a declaration by then-Secretary of Defense Caspar Weinberger, and portions of pre-sentencing memoranda submitted to the court by the government as well as by the defense. The materials were sealed because the government said they contained classified information, some of which could affect national security if disclosed inappropriately.... Mr. Pollard and his attorney at the time were permitted to read the sealed pages before sentencing. However, despite the provision in the protective order for future access, no attorney representing Mr. Pollard has been permitted to see these pages since 1987. While this denial of access has severely hampered the efforts of Mr. Pollard's new attorneys to secure justice for their client, it has proved convenient for his adversaries. For years, adversaries have exploited the sealed pages to generate political opposition to relief for Mr. Pollard by spreading, in the press, rumors and outright falsehoods. Since the accusations floated in the media are nowhere to be found in the open court file, they would either be substantiated in the sealed pages, or not at all. As no one representing Mr. Pollard has been allowed access to the sealed pages, Mr. Pollard's adversaries have had unbridled license to spread falsehoods with virtually no risk of contradiction... 'The government's conduct in this case is highly disturbing."
The United States Attorney arranged a plea-bargain with Pollard: he would plead guilty to the one count of passing classified information to an ally without intent to harm the United States. There would be no trial, and no risk of classified information being disclosed in court. In return, Pollard would receive a light sentence. Pollard pled guilty, as agreed, on June 4, 1986.
Before sentencing, and in violation of the plea agreement, Pollard and his wife Anne gave defiant media interviews in which they defended their spying, and attempted to rally American Jews to their cause. In a 60 Minutes interview, Anne said, "I feel my husband and I did what we were expected to do, and what our moral obligation was as Jews, what our moral obligation was as human beings, and I have no regrets about that." (Edwin Black, "Why Jonathan Pollard is Still in Prison").
Before sentencing, as noted above, Secretary of Defense Caspar Weinberger delivered a 46-page classified memorandum to the sentencing judge, the contents of which were not shown to Pollard's attorneys. On the day before sentencing, Weinberger delivered a supplemental four-page memorandum to the judge. Pollard and his attorneys were only shown the supplemental memorandum briefly before sentencing. Pollard claims that, in the memorandum, Weinberger accused him of treason and suggested a lifetime prison sentence. However, the United States Constitution provides that "Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying war against them, or in adhering to their Enemies, giving them Aid and Comfort." Art. III, Sec. 2, cl. 1. As Pollard did not levy war against the U.S., and since Israel was and is a U.S. ally, Pollard's supporters argue that he was not guilty of treason.
Pollard was sentenced to life in prison on one count of espionage for an ally. Pollard and his supporters protested that this was a sentence unprecedented for such a charge, and was in violation of his plea agreement.

4/16/2006 06:50:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Well it just goes to show, General Casey was correct, Baghdad must be secured, yet again.
Nine other cities, as well, he said.

If the US is about to begin a 10 city offensive in Iraq, the timeline for any Iranian action, instigated by US moves to a further horizon. Possible preemptive Iranian actions against US in the Region become more likely.

Because as allen wrote last thread
" ... For there is no question but a just fear of an imminent danger, though there be no blow given, is a lawful cause of war. ..."

That is as justifiable a cause of action for Iran as US.

It does not bode well for
US that the Brits have demurred from the Military Option in Iran.

Pollard, should have been executed, but regardless of that, to release him now, or ever, would be worse than bad.

4/16/2006 06:52:00 AM  
Blogger diabeticfriendly said...

Caspar Weinberger

Resignation as Secretary of Defense, 1987, Weinberger was placed under indictment by Independent Counsel Lawrence E. Walsh.

The formal indictment charged Weinberger with several felony counts of lying to the Iran-Contra independent counsel during its investigation.

Weinberger received a Presidential pardon from President George H. W. Bush on December 24, 1992.

Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1987.

and pollard got life...

4/16/2006 06:56:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

mat, Pollard is a traitor.
It was not for him to decide how to implement Treaty obligations for US.
Israel is not the US's 51st State.
If the US Government decides Israel does not need ANY specific data, they should not get it, from US.

Israel & Iran, both have attacked US assets, Israel has the higher direct body count of US dead.
Iran's is higher by proxy.

4/16/2006 06:57:00 AM  
Blogger Mətušélaḥ said...

In the years before and after Pollard's arrest numerous Americans were caught spying for allied or non-aligned countries. None received a sentence even remotely close to life, the average sentence being in the two-to-four-year range.

Even the overwhelming majority of those who spied for US enemies have fared better than Pollard. Of the more than 50 spies for US adversaries during the past two decades, not even a handful received life terms.

For example, CIA agent David Barnett, who sold the Soviets the names of 30 American agents, was given an 18-year sentence and
paroled after serving 10.

Michael Walker, for many years a key figure in the Walker family Soviet spy ring, was sentenced to 25 years and released after serving 15.

William Kampilas, a former CIA officer who sold the Soviets the operating manual to the KH-11 satellite, America's eye in the sky,
received a 38-year sentence and was released after 15 years.

Abdul Kedar Helmy, an Egyptian-born American, transmitted classified materials to Egypt that were used in a joint weapons
program with Iraq to vastly increase the range of ballistic missiles, including Iraq's Scud missiles, which were later fired on US troops during Desert Storm. Helmy received a prison term of less than four years.

Last year, John Paul Lindh, the American who joined the Taliban terrorists fighting the US, entered into a plea agreement and received a 20-year sentence.

4/16/2006 06:58:00 AM  
Blogger Mətušélaḥ said...

"Pollard, should have been executed, but regardless of that, to release him now, or ever, would be worse than bad."

"Israel & Iran, both have attacked US assets, Israel has the higher direct body count of US dead. Iran's is higher by proxy."


d'Rat,

Then by your logic, those US sailors deserved what for spying on Israel?

4/16/2006 07:06:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Multiple wrongs do not make a right

Pollard was trusted with Secret Material, Johnny "Taliban" Linh betrayed no such "special" trust.

Pollard's crime was magnitudes more destructive to US interests than Linh's

4/16/2006 07:07:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

mat,
nothing, they were on a shup on the high seas
Unless the Captain, whom recieved the Medal of Honor, for his actions and his Crew are a selfserving liars, which I do not believe.

4/16/2006 07:09:00 AM  
Blogger raymondshaw said...

Yep, he ought to be taking a dirt nap. Should have been joined by lots more, as well.

Rushing to his defense opens a window into divided loyalties that provides lots of opportunities for exploitation by the opposition. Hope it's worth it, cause you are paying a price.

4/16/2006 07:10:00 AM  
Blogger Mətušélaḥ said...

Intelligence flow was cut off in response to Israel's destruction of Iraq's Osirak nuclear reactor in 1981. Everyone in the US now acknowledges that Israel deserved thanks, not sanctions, for eliminating Saddam's nuclear reactor in 1981. It is time to agree that Pollard's life sentence for breaching those sanctions is grossly excessive.

4/16/2006 07:12:00 AM  
Blogger Tony said...

Pork Rinds,

Cap Weinberger and the whole crew of Iran Contra heroes were fighting communists in Central America. Don't conflate the issues, as the liberals say.

4/16/2006 07:15:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

4/16/2006 07:16:00 AM  
Blogger Mətušélaḥ said...

d'Rat,

I'm going to ignore your 7:09 AM comment. Not to do so, would make you a liar and a hypocrite. And a man with no honor.

4/16/2006 07:16:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

His prison sentence was lighter than deserved.
He and all those you mentioned previously, if all were Government employees trusted with Classied data, should have been executed.

That they were not is more a sign of US dysfuntion, not a cause to release Pollard

4/16/2006 07:23:00 AM  
Blogger 2164th said...

Pollard did things for the greater good did he? He saw things other US mortals did not. He took matters into his own hands. Good. Then he pays the price. Treason has consequences.

The audacity of suggesting US sailors being killed on the Liberty are equivalent to a convicted traitor is contemptuous and makes me want to spit .

4/16/2006 07:26:00 AM  
Blogger Mətušélaḥ said...

d'Rat,

The point is that they were not. There's NOTHING to suggest Pollard was worse than the others. And there's a lot to suggest that he was better. So why the double standard?

4/16/2006 07:30:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

mat,
you are an Israeli at heart, if not in fact.
Good for you.
Your first loyalty is to Israel, not US, fine by me, you do not even reside in the US. Fine by me.

" ...
CITATION:

Rank and organization: Captain (then Comdr.) U.S. Navy, U.S.S. Liberty place and date: International waters, Eastern Mediterranean, 8-9 June 1967. Entered service at: Thermal, Calif. Born: 19 November 1925, Wichita, Kans.

Citation:
For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. Sailing in international waters, the Liberty was attacked without warning by jet fighter aircraft and motor torpedo boats which inflicted many casualties among the crew and caused extreme damage to the ship. Although severely wounded during the first air attack, Capt. McGonagle remained at his battle station on the badly damaged bridge and, with full knowledge of the seriousness of his wounds, subordinated his own welfare to the safety and survival of his command. Steadfastly refusing any treatment which would take him away from his post, he calmly continued to exercise firm command of his ship. Despite continuous exposure to fire, he maneuvered his ship, directed its defense, supervised the control of flooding and fire, and saw to the care of the casualties. Capt. McGonagle's extraordinary valor under these conditions inspired the surviving members of the Liberty's crew, many of them seriously wounded, to heroic efforts to overcome the battle damage and keep the ship afloat. Subsequent to the attack, although in great pain and weak from the loss of blood, Captain McGonagle remained at his battle station and continued to command his ship for more than 17 hours. It was only after rendezvous with a U.S. destroyer that he relinquished personal control of the Liberty and permitted himself to be removed from the bridge. Even then, he refused much needed medical attention until convinced that the seriously wounded among his crew had been treated. Capt. McGonagle's superb professionalism, courageous fighting spirit, and valiant leadership saved his ship and many lives. His actions sustain and enhance the finest traditions of the U.S. Naval Service.

(Captain McGonagle earned the Medal of Honor for actions that took place in international waters in the Eastern Mediterranean rather than in Vietnam.) ... "

Read all about it
here
or even more


Call me what you will.

4/16/2006 07:35:00 AM  
Blogger PD Quig said...

Tony said...

"Hmmmm, what's that? A decoy package that deploys along with the warhead.... It doesn't seem likely, but could that trick have anything to do with the highly classified technology that Hughes and Loral paid record fines for sharing with the Chinese during the 90's?"

No, not in Loral's case anyway. I worked at SS/L when Intelsat 708 was lost in the Long March launch failure. The long and short of it was that a Loral engineer helped the Chinese by telling them what NOT to waste time on in analyzing the failure of their inertial guidance system. Without this help their FMEA would have been unlikely to have found the root cause of the failure, and would have rendered Long March commercially too risky for insurance -- effectively killing their program. It didn't help that the EVP of Engineering at the time was a guy named...Dr. Wah Lim.

But Loral's satellites are as big as a small bedroom, and a single bird stretches the limits of what can fit within the confines of a nose cone. This had nothing to do with MIRV technology.

4/16/2006 07:37:00 AM  
Blogger Mətušélaḥ said...

d'Rat,

I am Israeli. I've never kept it a secret, and been very upfront about it. But what does it matter? What does it have to do with me asking why is a double standard applied against Pollard?
And what does your 7:35 AM post have to do with anything?

4/16/2006 07:45:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

I just thought you were a Canadian jewish dentist.

The 7:35 was in response to

"I'm going to ignore your 7:09 AM comment. Not to do so, would make you a liar and a hypocrite. And a man with no honor. ..."

I do not believe I am either a liar nor hypocrite, regardless of your reply or lack of.

4/16/2006 07:46:00 AM  
Blogger Mətušélaḥ said...

You know very well that the U.S.S. Liberty was a spy ship. You claiming to be ignorant of that would make you a liar, and a hypocrite by the fact that you would condemn Pollard to death and not those sailors, and a man without honor in that you would throw this shit in my face.

4/16/2006 07:59:00 AM  
Blogger Tony said...

Mgt 101 Quiz:

If a CEO runs an organization with 2.5 million employees, probably a trillion in assets, and critical responsibility ...
And he meets with his senior staff an avg of 9.3 times per week, and his diviional staff 14 times per week, year around, is that called:
1. nano-management;
2. leadership;
3. Rummy's in charge?

(Amazingly, this info appears above the fold on the front page of the NYT!)

4/16/2006 08:00:00 AM  
Blogger 2164th said...

I watched brand new F4s have the stars and bars painted over and flown out of bases in the UK in the spring of 1967. That was Nixon's idea and under his orders. He was hated by liberal American Jews. Those American sailors were killed under the American flag while American war planes with the American flag hidden under new paint were at trhe disposal of Israel. The idea of someone equating dead and wounded US serviceman to a skunk like Pollard by anone is a slander, by an Israeli unforgivable.

4/16/2006 08:01:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Aany way in exchange for Pollard, we are to free Marwan Barghouti?
Or does Israel propose for US to hold Mr Barghouti?

If it is good policy for Israel to free Mr Barghouti, to counter balance Hamas, it should.

Why should the US free Pollard and Mr Barghouti, both?

Let 'em all rot in jail, they are both Criminals.

4/16/2006 08:02:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

But it was not in Israel spying.

It is not Intelligence gathering which is dishonorable, but breaking Faith with those that placed the trust of a Nation in their hands.
Betraying the trust that the American people bestowed on them is the crime, mat.

As to the Liberty
"... During our brief stopover in Rota, Spain, however, we had taken aboard several technicians and linguists sent by the National Security Agency especially for this mission. These men had been specially briefed on their assignment. They were trained in Russian and Arab languages; not a Hebrew linguist among them. And while the assignment remained a vague and general one, their primary interest was not the Israelis or even the Arab side of this war. The primary concern of these men was to learn more about several Soviet TU-95 bombers that had been stationed in Egypt by the Soviet government. The assignment: find out whether the aircraft were controlled by Egypt, as both governments claimed, or were in reality merely Soviet long range bombers stationed on Arab soil and under Soviet control. ... "

" ... At 2:00, radar operators on the ship's bridge detected more approaching high speed aircraft, flying low, coming from the direction of Tel Aviv. Apparently these were more of the same aircraft that had been visiting us all day. At the same time our men detected three small surface craft, later determined to be Israeli torpedo boats, just as they came across the visible horizon 16 miles away.


In the radio intercept spaces, our intercept operators were getting lucky too. "We got em, We got em," one of the men yelled as he raced across the crowded room to tell Chief Smith that they had identified Soviet pilots talking to Moscow in the Russian language from the bombers that were supposedly owned and controlled by Egypt. Now there was proof that these were not Egyptian airplanes at all. That was a ruse. These were Soviet long range bombers stationed dangerously close to Europe, America, and the free world. An important part of Liberty's mission, perhaps the most important part, had been accomplished. ... "

USS Liberty
It flew the Stars and Stripes.
Big and Bold

4/16/2006 08:09:00 AM  
Blogger Mətušélaḥ said...

"They were trained in Russian and Arab languages; not a Hebrew linguist among them."

So? Even if we take that at face value, Pollard was acquiring technical data on Soviet weapons systems, and Arab WoMD.

4/16/2006 08:16:00 AM  
Blogger 2164th said...

I give up.

4/16/2006 08:19:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

The Israeli attack upon the USS Liberty will FOREVER be weighed negatively in the balance of my thinking with regard Israel.

How will massive air raids against Iran effect thinking there?

Mr Bush says Iranians are our friends, will they be after MASSIVE airstrikes envisioned by AirForce Lt Gen MacInenny(sp)?

4/16/2006 08:25:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Pollard should go public with his information and THEN and ONLY THEN maybe be Pardoned.
But not until his brain is washed clean and EVERYONE knows his Secrets.

The Soviets were our friends, too.

I do not remeber any Soviet torpedo boats attacking the US Navy.

4/16/2006 08:28:00 AM  
Blogger Mətušélaḥ said...

2164,

Ask yourself, if the crew of the U.S.S. Liberty was spying on the Russians and the Arabs as what the fsck were they doing off the shores of Tel Aviv?

4/16/2006 08:30:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

" ... Bill Clinton, the Sultan of Swing, gave an interesting speech last week, apropos foreign policy: "Anytime somebody said in my presidency, 'If you don't do this, people will think you're weak,' I always asked the same question for eight years: 'Can we kill 'em tomorrow?' If we can kill 'em tomorrow, then we're not weak, and we might be wise enough to try to find an alternative way."

The trouble was tomorrow never came -- from the first World Trade Center attack to Khobar Towers to the African Embassy bombings to the USS Cole. Manana is not a policy. The Iranians are merely the latest to understand that. ... "

Policy on Iran nukes seems to be off-target Mark Steyn states without equivication
We are on the Wrong Course.

4/16/2006 08:35:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Just like they said, listening to the Russians, in "safe" waters.
The Israelis were our "friends & allies"

4/16/2006 08:37:00 AM  
Blogger Mətušélaḥ said...

Cross my 8:30 AM comment.

Wiki: June 8, 1967, while in international waters off the Sinai Peninsula, Liberty was attacked and damaged by Israeli forces

4/16/2006 08:44:00 AM  
Blogger Mətušélaḥ said...

What was the sea condition during that day?

4/16/2006 08:52:00 AM  
Blogger Mətušélaḥ said...

Never mind. Found what I need. The USS Liberty.

4/16/2006 08:57:00 AM  
Blogger Tony said...

PD Quiq, thanks for the update at 7:37 on Loral's sin. But you're cutting it kind of fine there, aren't you?

Loral faxed the report to the PRC in May 1996 without prior review by any US government authority, charges the Cox committee. China eventually concluded that Loral was right, and that the IMU follow-up frame had failed.

Improvements in the reliability of the Long March guidance system hurts US security because it is one of the candidates for use in the PRC's next-generation DF-31 ICBM, says the House Select Committee.

Air Force Magazine Online, Jrnl of the AF Assoc. - The China Problem

Both Hughes and Loral were working on the same problem, and their joint efforts led to the same result:

These companies--Hughes and Loral--were worried about the fate of their own satellites. Hughes Space and Communications, for instance, attempted in 1992 and 1995 to launch communications satellites on Chinese Long March rockets. Both satellites were lost when their launch vehicles exploded.

An internal Hughes investigation located the problem as being the Long March's hammerhead fairing-a sheath that protects the satellite as the rocket roars into orbit and then splits away as the payload is pushed into space. US engineers believed that the rivets that held the fairing together were not strong enough. They also thought the shape was slightly off and was vulnerable to strong winds during ascent.

The Chinese did not want to hear these points, at least not at first. They were very reluctant to admit fault in their boosters. However, commercial insurers were reluctant to back more Hughes launches in China unless changes were made. So Hughes conveyed their findings to the Chinese in a formal manner, and eventually the Long March 2E fairing was improved through such measures as an increase in the nose cap attachment screws.

Fairings are not necessary with single-warhead ICBMs. But multiple-warhead missiles use them to shroud re-entry vehicles, and the knowledge Hughes conveyed to China could help speed their development of MIRVs, believes the House Select Committee.


Nobody got prison time at all in this deal. Is that because the information hasn't killed anyone ... yet?

4/16/2006 09:01:00 AM  
Blogger DanMyers said...

From D.R.'s link to Steyn -

"Allowing the Guinean tail to wag the French rectum of the British hindquarters of the American dog was a huge waste of resources."

Man can Steyn turn a phrase or what?

4/16/2006 09:06:00 AM  
Blogger Boghie said...

A couple of points:

The Clinton/Loral fiasco was not the only moronathon of the Clinton era of peace and prosperity.

How about the 15,000 foot air war in Bosnia. Uuuummmm, forgot that we apparently used Stealth Fighter/Bombers at a much lower level... Seems we lost one... And, I remember reports of the Serbians selling parts to the highest bidders - Russia, Britain Germany, China, North Korea, Iran, etc... Now, we all know how knowledgeable the media is on such topics, but:

Imagine missiles built of radar absorbing material. Not a nice thought, eh… That is why Clinton’s Serbian campaign is a complete failure. We lost a 20/30 year edge in stealth technology on that one – and yes, I know it is the electronics (that were wiped out) that allow the aircraft to fly – but missiles are already stealthy and they already fly…

I can’t think of any Air Force officer that would want to use the F117 at treetop level in a campaign such as that. Why were they flying so low? Was that FUBAR worth it? A bit scared of any casualties…

Regardless, on the topic at hand, why would we want Marwan Barghouti? That is the deepest question of this post. Pollard is probably playing any hand he has – he really cannot lose anything… But, why would Israel think Marwan Barghouti is a viable poker hand to play in stopping Pollard’s yak??? Barghouti does have an odd history of killing Jews and Infidels – and then getting released. He does have an odd history of being in the middle of terror uprisings, but then finding himself on the periphery. In other words, he seems to have a powerful papa – maybe (pure conjecture) Iran/Contra??? Another ‘Not a nice thought’ moment.

I am sure glad the current President doesn’t seem to follow the precepts of Real Politic – otherwise known as ‘too smart by half’…

4/16/2006 09:10:00 AM  
Blogger exhelodrvr said...

Matuselah,
It seems quite obvious to me that Pollard did a lot more than came out in court; and (most likely for the good of both nations) the extent of his actions was not made public.

4/16/2006 09:16:00 AM  
Blogger exhelodrvr said...

Boghie,
" can’t think of any Air Force officer that would want to use the F117 at treetop level in a campaign such as that."

The F117, and other stealth aircraft, are not invisible to radar and other detection devices (i.e. thermal), they just give a significantly lower return. So they still need to use the tactics to avoid beign seen.

4/16/2006 09:19:00 AM  
Blogger Mətušélaḥ said...

That's BS.

Wiki: The United States Attorney arranged a plea-bargain with Pollard: he would plead guilty to the one count of passing classified information to an ally without intent to harm the United States. There would be no trial, and no risk of classified information being disclosed in court. In return, Pollard would receive a light sentence. Pollard pled guilty, as agreed, on June 4, 1986.

4/16/2006 09:22:00 AM  
Blogger Utopia Parkway said...

W,

I think you are reading too much into this rumor re: Pollard/Barghouti. I doubt that Pollard has any embarrassing secrets to release. I don't think he's ever threatened to release anything like that. Even if he did he's very unlikely to have any documents so it would just be his word. It doesn't seem that any Israeli govt has ever pushed strongly for Pollard's release. The whole thing is an embarrassment for them, even though there is a very strong Israeli feeling to leave no man behind, as evidenced by their lopsided prisoner swaps.

I doubt that GWB or the Israeli govt believes that releasing Barghouti would somehow strengthen Fatah against Hamas, although some member of State dept might think this. The Pal govt is so chaotic it would be difficult to predict how releasing another terrorist into the mix would turn out. It would be hugely unpopular among the Israeli public for Barghouti to be released and I don't see that the Israeli govt would be gaining very much.

4/16/2006 09:29:00 AM  
Blogger Boghie said...

ExHeloDrvr,

Understood...

But the downing of the F117 took place late in the 'war'. I just read a report that it was downed by a reletively unguided missile - a lucky strike...

My question on that is: Was the potential to lose such a technological lead worth the fight in Bosnia... And, what drove us to use stealth enabled bombers so late in the war - a complete aversion to casualties. Which is commendable, but there are negative consequences...

One of which is losing that technological edge in a peripheral battle...

This is why I am a bit suspicious of any technology to intercept ballistic missiles. What if they are constructed of radar absorbing material?

Regardless, Marwan Barghouti is the most interesting figure here...

4/16/2006 09:31:00 AM  
Blogger Boghie said...

Could Barghouti be part of the Iran/Contra RealPolitic effort in the late 80's?

That might be enough to keep him from a timetable driven dirtnap. Only are regrettable accident would shut him up.

Personally, I don't think Bush would cave on such a threat of yak. He really doesn't seem to play that game...

4/16/2006 09:34:00 AM  
Blogger Tony said...

Boghie,

The Serbs were able to shoot down that stealth fighter because they were able to network multiple radars together. Even though any one network might only get a glimpse, if you see them all at once, you can connect the dots and thereby predict a path narrow enough that conventional missiles could lock on. (I think that was i AWST, long long ago, before history began in 2001.)

Optical-fiber network, the same technology used against us in Iraq, supplied by ... guess who?

4/16/2006 09:39:00 AM  
Blogger allen said...

desert rat, 6:57 AM


"Israel & Iran, both have attacked US assets, Israel has the higher direct body count of US dead."

You do have specific incidents and numbers, right?

4/16/2006 09:43:00 AM  
Blogger exhelodrvr said...

Allen,
He is referring to the 1967 attack on the U.S.S. Liberty.

4/16/2006 09:49:00 AM  
Blogger PD Quig said...

Tony,

I don't excuse Loral's assistance to the PRC. Just providing a little context. Was it a careless, over-zealous engineer -- or something more nefarious? The full story will probably never be told.

4/16/2006 09:55:00 AM  
Blogger 2164th said...

Can we let Pollard rot and worry about the real threat to the US? Check this out :

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/12335721/site/newsweek/

..."Beijing's armed forces, for instance, have exchanged dozens of high-level military delegations with Latin American countries since 2004. In testimony on Capitol Hill last year, U.S. Army Gen. Bantz Craddock, head of the Miami-based Southern Command, contrasted rising Chinese influence in the region to a Bush administration policy of slashing military aid to several Latin governments. If the trend continues, Craddock warned, Washington could forfeit "the opportunity to ... teach them about [our] values and ideals and beliefs in democratic institutions." Last week the Southern Command sent an aircraft-carrier group to the Caribbean for military exercises, designed to underscore Washington's commitment to the region and to allay concerns about perceived U.S. "passivity" in the face of China's Latin American campaign."

4/16/2006 09:58:00 AM  
Blogger 2164th said...

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/12335721/site/newsweek/

4/16/2006 10:00:00 AM  
Blogger Boghie said...

The purest form of speculation:

Pollard provides Israel with information on Iraq's air defense technology and tactics. US generated information on Soviet technology and tactics would be very useful in taking out the Osirak nuclear facility in 1982. Iraq was armed and trained largely by the Soviet Union in the 1980s. Thus, there weapons and tactics would be, and were, similar.

Barghouti provides a conduit (or is the conduit) for the Iran/Contra weapons for cash transactions. He seems to be quite a Terror Turd - but one who slips the noose often. And, remember we had 'professors' kidnapped from the University of Beruit.

Reagan was a neocon in the great conflict of his era, but he followed the tenants of realpolitic for periphery conflicts.

The beginning of Islamofascism was periphery to the Cold War... In the budding conflict with Islamofascist Barbarians he stalemated, in the conflict with the Soviet Union he behaved very much like President George W Bush.

4/16/2006 10:15:00 AM  
Blogger allen said...

desert rat,

I want to be sure I understand you. Are you saying that the Naval Court of Inquiry, tasked with making an official finding on the incident, agrees with your rendition? Or, are the opinions you express as to malice and culpability entirely your own, having no resemblance whatsoever to the official position of the government of the United States?

4/16/2006 10:15:00 AM  
Blogger NahnCee said...

It seems to me that the emphasis on Pollard is ass-backwards, and the emphasis should be on Barghouti; i.e., that the U.S. has decided that we want Barghouti free and the only bargaining chip we could come up with big enough to convince Israel is Pollard.

Why would we want Barghouti free? Wasn't he a viable candidate in the recent elections that Hamas ended up winning? If he was out and walking around, is there a possibility that the Palestinians might start to focus on pulling it together under ONE leader instead of running around shooting at the sky and firing missiles into Israel?

I don't know that much about Barghouti other than he was locked up for murdering Israeli's, but since ALL the Palestinians do that what is there about him over and above that fact that made so many Palestinians vote for him, even though he was in jail?

And can America use that about him, if we can pry him out of an Israeli jail?

4/16/2006 10:23:00 AM  
Blogger allen said...

exhelodrvr,

Re: USS Liberty

Yes, I know d'rat is addressing that. He is also placing Israel in the same category of belligerency as Iran. Indeed, he is saying, apparently, that as America's adversaries go, Israel is worse than Iran.

If d'rat is correct, history should support him with unequivocal examples of Israel's open hostility to the US, with the resultant body count.

If d’rat cannot prove by examples the case that Israel’s relationship with the US is in the same league as Iran’s, then, his statements as to the relationship of the US and Israel are simply the matter of personal opinion.

If his statements are merely personal opinion, then, my disagreement with them (or the disagreement of others with him) does not indicate on our part a conflict of loyalty. In short, I think it permissible to disagree with d'rat and still be a patriotic American.

If it is a matter of incontestable fact that Israel did, on 8 June 1967, with malice aforethought, engage in an act of war against the United States, the record of that action will so attest. Did (does) the government of the United States hold that on 8 June 1967 the armed forces of the government of Israel, in an act of war, purposefully attacked the US naval vessel Liberty?

4/16/2006 10:34:00 AM  
Blogger Tony said...

PD Quig,

I come down on the side of something a little more nefarious, given the fact Clinton transferred control of this technology from the State Dept. to Commerce not long before this "over-zealous engineer" shoveled it to the PRC.

Contemporaneously, money was pouring in from foreign sources, as proved by the numerous guilty pleas and record fines paid by off-shore entities closely related to the PRC, like Lippo Group.

I know it wouldn't prove it to the O.J. jury, but I don't think you have to be Sherlock Holmes to see a pattern.

No offense, meant, sir. Just another view of the context.

---

Now, back to the real thread, where Belmont Clubbers are discussing Pollard etc. If today's NYT front page stories on Rummy and the Generals are any indicator, I expect to see the sentiments of my august company in the Club to show up in the Old Gray Lady soonest.

4/16/2006 10:37:00 AM  
Blogger exhelodrvr said...

Allen,
He is obviously exaggerating to make a point, which is that Israel committed an almost unforgiveable act. Yes, they clearly knew that it was a U.S. ship. The first attack could possibly be excused as "fog of war" induced, but not the subsequent ones. The U.S. government clearly gave Israel a pass on the incident.

4/16/2006 10:51:00 AM  
Blogger allen said...

nahncee, 10:23 AM

I think you have hit on something important: Who approached whom about a trade-off of Pollard for Barghouti? The assumption that Israel initiated the bargaining may be incorrect. Something as half-baked and politically embarrassing as this could only come from the State Department, in my opinion. Look at the firestorm the mere rumor has generated on this site today.

Pollard wanted to be a hero. Sometimes heroes die. If you want to play the game, you must prepare for the blame and the shame. That Pollard lacks the capacity to simply admit the obvious, i.e. he was a haphazard spy, does not make the public disposed to mercy.

Barghouti is, as you say, a Palestinian. He will be a real asset to Dr. Rice in her on-going quest to find the formula for supporting terrorists without supporting terrorism.

4/16/2006 10:54:00 AM  
Blogger Mətušélaḥ said...

You see Allen, to d'Rat keeping Pollard locked up is payback for the Liberty accident. So is purposely withholding arms supply to Israel during the Yom Kippur War so that Israel will have its 'nose bloodied' by the Soviets. How many Israeli soldiers died that bloodbath and because of that purposeful malice? How many Israelis die and get injured EVERYDAY so that the US can be buddy buddy with its enemies? What's the rationale for that today? Israel must take these hits so the US can appease the Soviet Union?

4/16/2006 10:54:00 AM  
Blogger rufus said...

Bush has lost, according to Rasmussen, Six (6) points (from 45% approval to 39% approval) since the "Generals" started their attack. His poll numbers are now the lowest ever recorded by the most objective pollster out there.

Now, he's expected to release an Israeli spy, currently serving a LIFE sentence, to win the release of a convicted terrorist.

Seems unlikely.

4/16/2006 10:57:00 AM  
Blogger Mətušélaḥ said...

exhelodrvr,

Again, BS.
See 8:57 AM.

The more I'm learning about this incident, the more I'm learning about the American fsck farts trying to throw this shit on Israel.

4/16/2006 10:57:00 AM  
Blogger Dan said...

I have no comment on the status of Pollard, other than to say he should be executed without further comment; the Israelis in the house are clearly getting overly emotional about this person, in my opinion: his case is not a matter of ambiguities, and the plea-bargain is a procedural, tactical, not a moral or first-principles decision. He is a traitor, and traitors cannot be traitors without intent, and thus he knew what he was doing. Treat him like a man, and execute him. But with respect to this plan in the paper, it's idiocy. Whoever comes up with these plans is a romantic fool; they lead to nothing but increased chaos in the form of charismatic leaders whose efficacy neither the US, HAMAS, nor Israel can do anything to blunt. If Barghouti's power were based on some tangible thing over which some responsible party could exert control, then fine, but charismatic appeal is not one of those things, given the character of this conflict. Even if he were to improve Fatah's standing, what effect would this have? Al Qaeda would have increased appeal as an ally in the new dynamic, for example. While it is probable that HAMAS may work to some limited extent with al Qaeda based on the same-enemy principle, the inevitable conflict between the parties when one begins to encroach on the other would be contained much more easily in a bi-lateral dynamic than in a tri-lateral. Alternatively, I doubt it would make all that much difference; Barghouti will not be another Lenin. And then you'd have a Pollard and a Barghouti free, undermining our collective principles for a bit of a literary frolick. Better, I think, to bomb HAMAS when their "parliament" convenes and suck it up for the big Pali bumrush for Allah. Or not. Who knows? Not me.

4/16/2006 11:00:00 AM  
Blogger rufus said...

I guess it was racial guilt that led Truman to recognize Irael, in spite of the fact that George Marshall told him we would be fighting in the Middle East for a hundred years if he did it.

I guess, having done it, we're obligated to help protect those people that we, by our actions, encouraged to go there.

I guess, to us old southern rednecks it's kind of like having an ungrateful, thoroughly unlikeable, and undependable child. You don't like it, but you're stuck with it.

But, it can sure get "tiresome."

4/16/2006 11:09:00 AM  
Blogger Mətušélaḥ said...

"I have no comment on the status of Pollard, other than to say he should be executed without further comment.."

So should half the US population. But you wouldn't dare to act on it. But little Israel, she can be kicked around at your convenience.

4/16/2006 11:12:00 AM  
Blogger DanMyers said...

Dan,

Barghouti's charismatic appeal was, I thought, was because he was in Isreali prison. It would seem that his appeal would diminish if he was just one of the un-washed Pali masses. Maybe not, there is a certain cachet to being imprisoned by the "enemy", I guess. Might it be to reduce his clout among the Pali's? If it doesn't reduce that clout, we would have some pull with him politically, as we had party to his release? Is there a down-side here?

I am not an advocate of releasing ANY spy from custody... Apparently the government may be... I am trying to think like a Turtle Bay wonk.... Tho, the Thorazine did just kick in....

Mat, there is no one in this group that thinks that Isreal is an enemy of the U.S. If there were, they seem to have the cajones to come out and state it. Isreal made a mistake, the U.S. has made many. I don't see the point in rehashing the magnitude of mistakes. Did that sound like Kumbaya to you? Did to me, but still...

4/16/2006 11:25:00 AM  
Blogger Mətušélaḥ said...

"I guess, to us old southern rednecks it's kind of like having an ungrateful, thoroughly unlikeable, and undependable child. You don't like it, but you're stuck with it."



Fuck you!

Go kiss your grateful, thoroughly likable, and dependable, christ humping arabs.

I'm out of here. I wont be back.

4/16/2006 11:26:00 AM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Mercy sakes, what a thread. Are you all not vibrating to the Tehran tuning fork? The little ass-hitler has just announced--in honor of Easter?--that he has 40,000 suicide bombers deployed against American, Israeli, and British targets, just waiting, and that the attack signal is, a strike on the nuke facilities.

Please, TBC is a pretty good weathervane--I sure hate to see the Jihad create rifts in the core of the resistance. I think we're all on the same side here.

4/16/2006 11:30:00 AM  
Blogger DanMyers said...

Damn Rufus, I guess you had the cajones.. Now, that statement needs defending...

4/16/2006 11:33:00 AM  
Blogger rufus said...

I don't know, Buddy. I'm on the "American" side, just like I've always been.

Some people are on other people's sides.

Some seem Conflicted.

4/16/2006 11:37:00 AM  
Blogger rufus said...

Dan, I expect an American to fight for, speak up for, and be loyal to "America." Whether he is a Muslim of Iranian heritage, or a Jew of Middle Eastern heritage makes no nevermind to me.

4/16/2006 11:43:00 AM  
Blogger Annoy Mouse said...

I agree with DR, Pollard should have gotton 30 days in the electric chair. The rest of the rotten sons of bitches that walked after 15 years should have gotten the same. It's straight time for the Feds. Why should a pot grower get more harsh sentencing?

4/16/2006 11:48:00 AM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

danmyers--I'm with you--I wish I'd tuned in earler, before the best sense of humor on the blog got so pissed. I've always seen the liberty incident as a huge snafu related to the layers of diplomacy getting terrible awry under time and war pressure. Regrettable as all hell, but the last thing the KIA would want is to be a wedge in between allies. Pollard, well, everybody has spies in friendly governments--it's because everybody has enemies in the friendly governments--and friends in the enemy governments. Let's keep some perspective here. Rufus vented a feeling that everyone has at one time or another, when you have to go to bat for someone else. But the reason you have to go to bat for someone else is always the same, because they have to go to bat for you, too.

Even ignoring all the history, all the spiritual and emotional reasons for USA and Israel being tight, there's the matter of a powerful military force on the same side of the issues as we, and well-located in the heartland of the jihad. That without Israel, the jihad wouldn't exist, is the lodestone of jihadist propaganda, and is well-belied by history.

4/16/2006 11:52:00 AM  
Blogger Milan Oskoryp Sr. said...

mәtušélah:
...and Clintons?!!How many years Clintons should get for that China affair.
Hatred of some people[see P.Buchanan] has no source,beginning,end.....Pollard`s sin was Israel and no spying.
People like d'rat usually wake up too late.Their morning is cold and full of surprises.Seemingly reasonable people, in some directions their vision gets form of tunel.

4/16/2006 11:53:00 AM  
Blogger DanMyers said...

Rufus,

I am assuming (possibly mistaken) that you were posting to me.

Your statement seemed out of context to the discussion. D.R. has forwarded the U.S.S. Liberty, there has been discussion of the why's and wherefore's. To minimize the Isreali's to a red-headed step-child was not helpful in the discussion.

Now personally, I am all for ticking everyone off and seeing the chaff fly sometimes. But, that is only in very controlled situations. This wasn't one of those times (In my ignorant opinion).

4/16/2006 11:53:00 AM  
Blogger Annoy Mouse said...

My Iran plan would be to have meaning negotiations with Tehran, Russia, and China. They'd go something like this; "Please discontinue your nuclear ambitions. If you don't, and listen real hard Russia and China, we are going to proliferate like MF'r all your enemies. Saudis, W88's? Sure, why not. Make sure India has the best weapons in the world and the technology to use them, and enough of them to destroy the world in a single breath of Brahma. And just while Russia and China were scratching their pointy heads, massive first strike against CHina. Just be done with it. It is a winnable strategy and let Russia know they are next if they want to screw around.

Whew, I feel better now.

4/16/2006 11:57:00 AM  
Blogger allen said...

mətušélaḥ,

PLEASE, reconsider.

If you go to an American bookstore, you will immediately notice that Americans are fixated by two things: painless self-help panaceas and conspiracy theories. In both cases unsurprisingly, the authors attune their literary offerings to our prejudices.

I fully appreciate your sense of injured honor at the inference that Israel is the moron child to be dragged to all the family reunions. Consider the source.

In its brief history, Israel has repeatedly defeated the combined arms of its RoP neighbors, usually in a matter of days and usually in detail. Indeed, if various administrations had not interfered in the process, Syria and Lebanon would not be a continuing source of peril to both the US and Israel today. Israel takes a back seat to no one in the art of war.

I have had my loyalty to the United States questioned by contributors to this site. Like you, I find it irritating, but I try to remember the words of Franklin, "The sting of insult is truth." I need only examine my service and that of my family, over the centuries, to the American experiment. After giving the critics the nanosecond they deserve, I shrug off the buffoonery and foolishness and press on.

Your voice is important to the debate. The world cannot be perfected by silence.

4/16/2006 12:10:00 PM  
Blogger rufus said...

Think I'll go buy my darlin an Easter Basket, now.

Before I get myself in "Real" Trouble.

4/16/2006 12:11:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

It's a crazy-making world, alright. The political situation seems sliding toward horror and Big War--yet on the other hand global economic cooperation has never been better, the information revolution is promising such better lives for everyone. A great paradox.

4/16/2006 12:15:00 PM  
Blogger rufus said...

On the other hand: I guess it kind of ticked me off that M said that half the American population should be "executed." 50/50 I don't like the odds.

And, Syria and Lebanon? Well, you've done such a wonderful job with Gaza and the West Bank, I guess you're right. That would surely gone swimmingly, as well.

4/16/2006 12:19:00 PM  
Blogger bobalharb said...

Well, 'in every day there's at least one moment the devil can't find'--William Blake

4/16/2006 01:06:00 PM  
Blogger 2164th said...

I want to add something. I have stated my outrage at any justification on the attack of the Liberty. To equate a convicted felon and traitor with the dead US servicemen is non-negotiable. I believe the US alliance with Israel comes with a very high price, but it is a principaled relationship. Any national relationship should be based on honor, philosophical, political, security and economic interests. I want to disassociate my comments from being either anti-Israeli, which I am not, nor anti Jewish which I am not. But I have no fear in having a profound difference of opinion or expressing my differences with anyone based on reasonable argument. If my remarks offended anyone on grounds of percieved prejudice, I regret that. If you do not like my argument, do not insult my religion or national grouping or you relegate yourself to being what you claim to hate.

4/16/2006 01:09:00 PM  
Blogger Tex said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

4/16/2006 01:43:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

I'm always conscious of how vital morale must be to Israelis--with every sort of pressure imaginable upon that nation. Every moment is lived in the crucible. I just wonder if Texans, say--the Americans I know best--would bear up so well.

The 20th century saw a lot of Christendom turn its back on the Jews in their moment of extreme crisis.

Finally Christendom took down the mad fascists, but, too late for an entire European culture.

Does this mean USA owes Israel anything? It's easy enough to say no. I just can't see it that way. It's the "brother's keeper' question. And the "can man live by bread alone?" question.

4/16/2006 01:48:00 PM  
Blogger Tex said...

Rufus, man, I have to say you went over the line there. I'm thinking about that red line they run across the floor, walls and ceiling in Texas dance studios. That's the line fellows don't cross, because when they cross it they step inside the studio and see all sorts of non-boyfriend-dance-partnering, which of course leads to pointless fights.

Douglas: "How do you know?"
Sheen: "I just know."
:-)

What I think I'm trying to say is, Methuselah made some informed and meaningful points, and he even self-corrected a misstatement. You should have thought more carefully about your response, instead of lobbing this "thoroughly unlikeable child" grenade. Ruf, WTF? The Middle East would be a peaceful garden if all its nations were as "unlikeable" as Israel. Israel's principles, while sometimes inconvenient to outsiders, are as vital to Middle Eastern civilization as cojones are to procreation. And you know it.

Give Israel credit, ruf; and let Methuselah know you were talking smack. I want to see Methuselah here again. There aren't enough allies in the Belmont Club, or in the world.

---

Now, that stuff out of the way, I'd like to say that I know with full authority and florid conviction precious little about the ultimate truth of the attack on the Liberty, the contents of Pollard's filing cabinet, or Barghouti's present usefulness to Fatah or anyone else. So I appreciate the historical notes and links in thread. This is a history-and-current-events forum, yes? I hope it remains one...

4/16/2006 01:49:00 PM  
Blogger rufus said...

So; It's Metusela, or me, Right? Ok. Metusela, you were here first.

I'll find some place to vent where I can denigrate whatever damned country I want to, including Ohio. It's just too hard to be in favor of Everything about any country.

Life's too short.

And, the crappie are biting.

4/16/2006 01:53:00 PM  
Blogger 2164th said...

Damn guys. Take the day off, forget the vacation.

4/16/2006 02:07:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

No, rufus--we need to read your stuff and Mika's, too. This is a good set-up here, always interesting. Folks who speak no bullshit are rare.

4/16/2006 02:12:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Yes, tomorrow is a new day--

4/16/2006 02:13:00 PM  
Blogger Arthur Dent said...

Desert_Rat

Do you have any thoughts on 1. the controlled demolition of the twin towers, 2. fluoride in water, 3. banning DHMO, or 4. chemtrails?

4/16/2006 02:24:00 PM  
Blogger 2164th said...

On another matter Al jazeera has an interesting report that has a whif of damage control by Iran.
http://english.aljazeera.net/NR/exeres/0424EE87-D7B6-405E-A457-0E9293035792.htm

4/16/2006 02:34:00 PM  
Blogger allen said...

buddy larsen, 2:12 PM

Very well said!

I really appreciate you and wish to identify myself with your sentiments.

If I seem rough on Dr. Rice and the administration, well, I mean to be. But you should see some of my correspondence to Netanyahu, Sharon, Peres, etc.

When people you want to respect behave badly, you try to draw them up short. And, if history teaches anything about the civilized world's relationship with the Palestinians it is that the civilized world has enabled the Palestinians’ total dysfunctionality. It has to stop!

I've got paperwork to do. Have a good Easter holiday and be well.

4/16/2006 02:35:00 PM  
Blogger Arthur Dent said...

Rufus said,
I guess it was racial guilt that led Truman to recognize I[s]rael,
-------

Could it instead have been strong spine and working moral compass?

Don't forget we also forgave and rebuilt our enemies. We forgave them. Imagine the horror if EUnuchstanians had our power, let alone China, Russia or some other mistake.

Where you are correct is that most of the world consists of backstabbing scum.

Would you suggest we distance ourselves from Taiwan, South Korea, Japan, Central/South America, India?

Are you suggesting we need to be more like Russia, China, EUnuchstan, Chavez, Carter?

The US needs to support free nations worldwide. The world you imagine is why normal people left EUnuchstan in the first place.

4/16/2006 02:41:00 PM  
Blogger 2164th said...

Arthur Dent said

"Where you are correct is that most of the world consists of backstabbing scum"

Remember the movie "pawn broker". the Puerto Rican kid sweeping up accuses the pawnbroker of being prejudiced. The pawnbroker takes off his glasses, cleans them and replies,
"No. I am not prejudiced, white, black, brown, they are all the same to me. Scum."

4/16/2006 02:48:00 PM  
Blogger Tex said...

2164th: damage control by Iran

Hmmm... I hadn't noticed any damage as of yet. No embassies closed, imports embargoed, that sort of thing.

So it could instead be a bit of diplomatic intimidation: pressuring other Gulf State regimes into bowing out of any future conflict between the US and Iran.

Original text:

Rafsanjani: "If the United States launched a military strike against Iran, that would be neither in its interests nor in the interests of the entire region."

Dialectical translation:

Rafsanjani: "If the United States launched a military strike against Iran, that would be neither in its interests nor in the interests of its abetting allies throughout the entire region."

?

4/16/2006 03:01:00 PM  
Blogger NahnCee said...

I don't want to lose Israel as an ally because it's so danged much fun watching the Arabs go nuts over the relationship.

4/16/2006 03:02:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

DanMyers 9:06 AM,
I thought you knew:
Steyn is a name on a letterhead.
Larsen writes that stuff.

4/16/2006 03:05:00 PM  
Blogger DanMyers said...

Doug,

You know, now it makes all the sense in the world.. I wouldn't doubt it.. :-)

4/16/2006 03:08:00 PM  
Blogger Cedarford said...

Well, Wretchards second point about the "pacification" of Bahgdad after 3 years of lawlessness escaped much comment. Probably as it should, as we have heard other "major initiatives" amount to futility. Wait and see.

But Wretchard did ask about Pollard, who elicits the unquestioning "Us Jews First before any other allegiance" tribal loyalty of many Jews while provoking patriotic rage in Americans:

Why should Pollard be so valuable to Israel? The latest stories suggest Pollard is more dangerous to Israel than he was to the US. Yet when they had the chance, Israel refused him asylum. What gives?

Answering the last first, the Israeli Right considered the question of freeing Pollard in return for giving up aggressive, expansionist Zionist dreams of Greater (Eretz) Yishrael and stopping the Settlement and colonization of occupied lands a complete no -brainer when diplomats considered tossing in the traitor as a "sweetener" in the deal to get the land-grabs the Zionists did reversed.

The question of why Pollard is so important appears to rest on details the US Government and enormously powerful Israel Lobby have largely kept from the public.

We do know that Cap Weinberger determined early on he was a Jew who had highest loyalty to America, and he detested Jews that sold out American interests for money or Israel. And that his memos of damage to US interests submitted as aggravating factors when Pollard was sentenced do include Pollard or his Israeli handlers directly trading top secret US intelligence to the Soviet Union in return for more Jewish exit visas and letting Jews leave Russia with more of their wealth, as well as suspicions that Pollard or the Israelis handling his thefted material demanded and got Russian payments in secret bank accounts.

Suspected, but not confirmed, is that the intelligence listed in Court that Pollard compromised to Israel, thence to the USSR, ommitted some truly major intelligence of the highest and most confidential nature that was of tremendous importance to improving China and Russia's strategic position and counterintelligence.

We do know that in the years since the conviction, Pollards defenders have generated some tremendous complicating factors.

1. They had his wife and other Zionists hold a press conference saying that a Jew's highest loyalty was to Israel and the cause of Israel, not to any nation a Jew lives in for preferences or good economic opportunities.

2. Almost immediately, the Israel Lobby began trying to strongarm US polticians and high ranking appointees, especially Jews like William Cohen, Dav Zackheim, Greenspan, Kissinger...to demand Pollard be pardoned. This pressure backfired, but the threats of money for Pollard allies or money for the opponents of those against Pollard's release continues. High pressure was brought on both Bush I and Clinton to pardon him in return for money or "favorable coverage in Jewish-owned media outlets".

3. Contrary to Israel's public assurances that Israel stopped spying on "their best, most treasured friend" after Pollard, Israel actually intensified it's efforts and is now ahead of Russia, but behind China in number of prefessional and "amateur" agents. Israeli and Jewish American spies have focused on telecommunications, defense industries, arabs in the US, and disturbingly....quietly compiling dossiers on Capital Hill elected officials, staffers, and high ranking appointees to the Executive and private think tanks and Beltway contractors to aid in future "influencing". Leftist academics opposed to Zionism, especially those who are Jewish, suspect they too are subject to Right Wing Israelis trying to assemble "dirt dossiers" on them. Many report threats.

4. What happens to Pollard is thought to be a way that the Israel Lobby - 2nd in influence in DC behind the AARP but far ahead of other lobbys like the NRA, NAACP, AMA, Chamber of Commerce in purchasing votes or otherwise aquiring influence - can demonstrate its power and clout in a way that will force more politicians and staffers will come on board and work for Israel's needs. Or face the adverse media and campaign donation disfavor of the "friends of our Best Ally". The Israel Lobby has gotten more aid for Israel than the next 3 top recipients of foreign aid put together, more than we spent on all of Europe on the Marshall Plan, and is the only Foreign Lobby exempted from law from having it's various member groups forced to register as foreign lobbyists. And aid to Egypt, our other big welfare queen, only happens because Israel got entitled to 4 billion a year "temporary aid to facilitate the peace process" from Jimmy Carter's Camp David agreement, and the Egyptians were smart enough at the time to insist that they get 2.5 billion as long as the "temporary aid" fills Israel's coffers. That was 27 years ago, and the Israel Lobby has stopped any effort to divert that half of US foreign aid going to Israel and Egypt to needier countries.

5. Pollard is supposedly resentful that Rafi Eitan and others who handled his spying monetarily profited from his following orders then left him to rot and are not working harder to use Jewish American and Evangelical Christian clout to release him. To answer Wretchard - it appears Pollard is not so much as valuable as he appears to have embarassing dirt on the Israeli spymasters yet to be told. And that both countries - or at least Israel and the Israel Lobby, keep it under wraps as mutually embarassing. But, despite his frustration, the regularity with which the Israelis attempt to tie Pollard's release to ME diplomatic activities they are asked to support or just how much and what type of American secrets they sent to Russia and China over the years tests to his being a secretholder still. Pollard has beans left to spill - and the Israelis dearly wish to tuck him away safely in some non-descript kibbutz for the rest of his life..

6. Baghouti is just the latest "tool" the Israelis wish to use on their American tools..

7. With other members of the Israeli Lobby under investigation for spying, with more scrutiny of involved Jews coming out of the white paper "The Israel Lobby" and raging efforts to suppress or discredit it launched by Jews in media and academia, with growing Zionist fervor that America must "take out Iran" before Iran can threaten Israel - Pollard is a person that is highly inconvenient to Israel and many Jewish-American's ultimate interests.

7. The discussion should always remember that there is still a sizable, even majority of Jews in the USA with absolute 1st loyalty to America. That Jews like Cap Weinberger, Dav Zackheim, William Cohen, Kissinger, Rubin, Madeline Albright were at the forefront of those opposing the Israel Lobby on Pollard.

4/16/2006 03:10:00 PM  
Blogger DanMyers said...

Discussion, not proof. Is that what you intended C4? Or are we to blindly follow where others dare not tread?

4/16/2006 03:21:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

bobalharb 1:06 PM,
THAT does it!
...I'm movin back to the farm!

4/16/2006 03:24:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

"Where you are correct is that most of the world consists of backstabbing scum. "
---
Arthur,
Well then fer sher, DON'T give little Black kids Vouchers with which to ESCAPE!
;-)

4/16/2006 03:31:00 PM  
Blogger DanMyers said...

Hey, it looks like the Democrats have decided it's time to let people know what they stand for... Of course it came from the blogosphere...

4/16/2006 03:36:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

OK,
The moron enters the fray:

Mat says,
" Wiki: June 8, 1967, while in international waters off the Sinai Peninsula,
Liberty was attacked and damaged by Israeli forces...
"

Isn't it also true that:

Wiki: June 8, 1967, while in international waters off the Sinai Peninsula,
Liberty was attacked and damaged by Israeli forces...
---
Isn't that an IMPORTANT distinction?
Just wonderin.

4/16/2006 03:49:00 PM  
Blogger DanMyers said...

I apologize. This is a "global democratic view", not from the Democrat Party in the U.S..... When did the Democrats have a global reach.. Oh, that's right, when they were Communists.. Forgot.

Yes, C4, that was the bait..

4/16/2006 03:51:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

As to comparative sentences pleading for leniency, 99% of the time my boilerplate answer is:
Hang em all!
---
I carry the same attitude into the Jury Box against all "legal" advice to the contrary.
...convince me of their innocence, I'll buy em lunch!

4/16/2006 03:53:00 PM  
Blogger Tony said...

Rufus was talking in a vernacular, like when he introduced us to the lost girlfriend with the .44 in her purse, the one he "helped take the wheels off her house" for.

I always like to think Belmont is not a bicker blog, like all the rest.

We'd never act like this in person, especially if we were alone, each bumping into the others as strangers, say in the International Hotel in downtown Jo'burg, say in 1979, after coming home from seeing "The Deerhunter" in some movie theater.

After eating the hot chili and drowning it in beers, and finally moving up to the little closet bar off the lobby. To settle down into that feeling you got from DeNiro in
Deerhunter, invincible, crazy, determined, just crazy mostly.

You had enough beer and chili, so you start drinking whiskey at the short, dark bar. A couple of guys come in in their dirty bluejeans and t-shirts, just drove their truck down from "Rhodesia" as they still called it. You start babbling about how great America is, how don't worry boys, we won't leave you hanging like we did in Nam.

You been in country long enough, you know every man-jack around you is packing, usually a .45 short on his ankle, or a .38 in his belt. But still you're high on America.

You ain't been reading Time magazine lately, you don't know that Jimmy Carter pulled the plug on these guys, and left them facing the Cubans and Russians in Angola.

You blah-blah-blah talking, and one of the guys takes offense. All of sudden, he is asking you if you wan't to go talk out in the alley. He don't look too big, and neither does his partner, but that thing about the guns sticks out in your mind.

You say "No, come on, let me buy you guys a drink." They ain't smiling. "Hey bartender! C'mon over here! Let me buy these guys a drink."

----------------

Unfortunately, in the Belmont Club, we don't got no stinkin' bartender, we only have these simple ASCII words to share between us.

4/16/2006 03:54:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

I was just gettin ready to tell DanMyers it felt like we were stumblin over the bodies in the still-smokey Saloon, but along comes Tony to say it better!
A Tip of the Stetson to Tony!

4/16/2006 04:00:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

How about that Me/Mustang discussion in the previous thread, Tony?
...and rwe's figures on Willow Run, and etc.
Whata country!

4/16/2006 04:02:00 PM  
Blogger wretchard said...

Utopia Parkway,

I completely agree that this Pollard-Barghouti thing makes no sense. And it hasn't been picked up on any degree. I'm beginning to think it's a weird trial balloon sent up by his legal advisers. If it weren't for the fact the thing was reported on Israeli Army radio it would be ridiculous. So the best thing is to wait and see.

4/16/2006 04:06:00 PM  
Blogger Tony said...

Doug,

I'll go back and read the other thread, for some reason I couldn't take my eyes off this one today, all the fratricide for the holidays.

4/16/2006 04:11:00 PM  
Blogger trangbang68 said...

If we're going to start executing traitors let me nominate a few.Skipping the obvious candidates like Aldridge:

1)Johnnie Taliban Boy for being a traitor to his pacifist roots in Marin County

2)Jane Fonda for you know...

3)Sami Al Arian

4)Ward Churchill for pretending he's an Injun thus betraying all boomer boys who grew up as John wayne fans

5)Al Gore for worrying so much about Earth he has forsaken his Martian homeland

6)Cindy Sheehan for betraying the notion that California s were attractive

7)If he wasn't already room temperature Walter O'Malley for taking the Dodgers out of Brooklyn

4/16/2006 04:12:00 PM  
Blogger Utopia Parkway said...

According to this article: "Jonathan Pollard's attorney said Sunday that the United States would release the convicted spy if Pollard's onetime handler, Rafi Eitan, handed over a secret document which details broad Israeli government involvement in the affair."

It still makes no sense. This event is over and done with. Why would GWB want to embarrass the Israeli govt now? Most of the principals are out of politics or dead already.

Because of Pollard's sentence I assume that the only way he can be released is by Presidential pardon so when the attorney says "the United States" she means GWB or at least some cabinet level official.

I will say that the Weinberger memo remains a mystery though.

Maybe this is all a stunt by Pollard supporters to keep his name on the front pages. Maybe this is an attempt by someone in Israel to embarrass some of their politicians for reasons that are really unrelated to the US at all.

4/16/2006 04:17:00 PM  
Blogger geoffgo said...

Mətušélaḥ,

Don't be angry. Don't take offense. Think about it. When we hear that Jews should be loyal to Israel before all others, including the USA, it sounds a lot like that crap about being faithful to Islam, no matter what country you live in.

See US Americans have a large population to worry about with 4-6 million Muslims in-country, and we haven't sorted it out yet. Like where their loyalties lie.

At least in Israel, you can pretty much say they're all the enemy, unitl proven not to be. We're not allowed.

4/16/2006 04:18:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Maybe when folks sober up, or get drunk, or do whatever needs to be done, they can comment on Petraeus.
...I had one more great article from Mosul days, but it's on a hard drive sitting on the shelf.

4/16/2006 04:18:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

C4, of the fifteen thousand billions we generate, 4 of them go to Israel (or, $1 of every $3,750), then come right back to our own defense industry, in return for weapons which Israel then deploys using--paying for--her own manpower, skill, location, infrastructure, and risk.

Since the IDF is a staunch ally, just in terms of military power, what do we save?

4/16/2006 04:21:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Utopia,
WHY exactly do you think the issue might ruffle feathers?

4/16/2006 04:22:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

sorry!

4/16/2006 04:22:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Trangbang,
8) Steve Garvey for Cheatin on Cindy!
(at least Don Sutton got some justice!)

4/16/2006 04:25:00 PM  
Blogger Tex said...

tony: You had enough beer and chili, so you start drinking whiskey...

And then the posting gets out of hand, all right. You know, there should be public service announcements on the blogosphere:

"Friends don't let friends blog drunk."

"Hyper-verbose comments can collapse upon their own weight into inky black holes of mental death. Please sign waiver before reading."

"Could you read that post to your Mom? To Jesus? To Lynn Swann? Seriously, Lynn Swann, right there in your living room! How cool would that be?"

"Fact-check your own a**."

4/16/2006 04:35:00 PM  
Blogger Utopia Parkway said...

Doug,

Do you mean: Why might his release ruffle feathers?

I want to believe that it's in the Weinberger memo. This article in today's Haaretz says "One possibility is that then Defense Secretary Casper Weinberger was a loose canon, a former employee of American oil interests in Saudi Arabia wanting to impress and gain fovor with his past and possibly future employers. But more likely Pollard's application for employment provided Weinberger and other anti-Israel Reagan Administration technocrats an opportunity to embarrass Israel and put her on the diplomatic defensive for years to come.

So maybe there was some kind of conspiracy, not in Israel, but in the US.

Obviously his release would raise the supposed issue of dual loyalty of Jewish Americans and the influence on the US govt by Israeli interests. Because of these things I think the US govt is reluctant to release him. I kind of expected Clinton to pardon him when he left office. Pollard is certainly more deserving than that criminal Marc Rich.

I wouldn't expect Bush to pardon Pollard until he is about to leave office or unless the Israelis were about to sign a peace deal or some other deal and they demanded Pollard as part of the deal.

4/16/2006 04:48:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

1. the controlled demolition of the twin towers, Not a chance in hell. The lack of asbestos coverings on the beams caused premature failure.

2. fluoride in water, fights cavities

3. banning DHMO, how would they make styrofoam without it?
or

4. chemtrails? idiocy.

The US does not award the Medal of Honor to Naval Commanders in cases resulting from faulty navigation.

There is plenty of information available on the USS Liberty incident. More than enough for each person to make their own decision as to culpability.

National loyalties do play a factor in the Perception of Truth.

In the US, Israel, Iraq and Iran.

4/16/2006 04:53:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Tony, that bar thing was mucho enjoyable reading. The mention of Carter, too was apt, since no ally of ours can ever know for sure when we'll up and elect another peanut charismatic who'll sell their ass down the river.

This fact to me ameliorates some of the hard feelings I might otherwise have about some of the things mentioned above which I don't want to bring back up. But American power is such that it's got to scare our allies at least a little, that we have this Carter strain always in the wings, if not on center stage.

We have to face this about ourselves: Not that much has changed since congress cut off aid to ARVN.

It's the reverse of what Allen said about the Palis (how they're in such a rotten mess not because of Israel but because of their helpful enablers): If we weren't going to stick with South Vietnam all the way, we should've backed out before we went in--it would've been far more humane.

4/16/2006 04:54:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Tex,
And in Ohio, a real, pro-family, CONSERVATIVE, KEN BLACKWELL
---
Ken Blackwell, Ohio’s secretary of state, who is leading Ohio Attorney General Jim Petro in the polls for the Republican gubernatorial nomination, has bucked his party by openly criticizing outgoing Gov. Bob Taft, a fellow Republican, for his tax policies, claiming they betray conservative principles

4/16/2006 05:06:00 PM  
Blogger DanMyers said...

Annoy Mouse,

- "And just while Russia and China were scratching their pointy heads, massive first strike against CHina. Just be done with it."

You thought everyone forgot about you, didn't you? But no, not me, BWAHAHAHA... You know, life would be so simple if we could just BLOW THE SH*T OUT OF EVERY STUPID A*S COUNTRY THAT F**KS WITH US.... Sorry, I must wipe the spittle off my chin.. That's better..

China would be a mistake. We haven't seen an expansionist trend in their politics (other than South America.. Well there goes my point.) OK, China would be good... Now Russia, well..now Russia.. OK Russia would be good. I personally dislike Sweden...

4/16/2006 05:27:00 PM  
Blogger Utopia Parkway said...

This is a recent interview with Rafi Eitan, the spymaster who ran Pollard.

He says that the contents of the Weinberger memo was the allegation that US spies in USSR were betrayed by Pollard, resulting in their deaths. These deaths were later blamed on the Soviet mole Ames, who said that Pollard did it. It seems more likely that Ames compromised these US spies than that Pollard did.

The memo is supposed to have been 46 pages so there might be more in it than just this allegation. Also, how does Eitan know what was in the memo?

Apparently Pollard did pass to the Israelis a very large quantity of material. This must be very embarrassing to the US intelligence community, which may be the reason that they want him locked up forever.

4/16/2006 05:57:00 PM  
Blogger allen said...

desert rat, 4:53 PM

You have had all day to answer my questions put to you and others at 9:43 AM, 10:15 AM, and 10:34 AM.

You have not specifically addressed those questions because you cannot do so honestly without looking like an uninformed bigot. And by bigot I do NOT mean a racialist; rather, I mean bigot in its classic sense, i.e. one so attached to a point of view that facts are not allowed to intrude.

Well, as you already have discovered, but are unwilling to share with the other readers at Belmont, the Naval Board of Inquiry and every subsequent official inquiry since have totally exonerated Israel from wrong doing. That is history, sir. That is the matter of legal fact.

To reiterate for the sake of absolute clarity, the government of the United States DID NOT and DOES NOT believe that the armed forces of the government of Israel knowingly attacked the ship USS Liberty on 8 June 1967. Those, sir, are the facts.

As to your opinions and those of others shared herein today regarding misplaced loyalty -racially, religiously, or societally - you are entitled to your opinions. What you cannot do henceforth, however, is cover bigotry with the veneer of legality and false historicity, at least in the case of the Liberty.

As to treason/espionage, if the government of the United States through the courts of the United States has successfully prosecuted Mr. Pollard for whatever, then, so be it. Ethel and Julius Rosenberg betrayed the US and were executed. You will find no monuments to the Rosenbergs erected by America's Jews, although Castro did erect one in Havana.

4/16/2006 06:12:00 PM  
Blogger DanMyers said...

A.M. -

Sorry, after reading my post, I see that there should have been a big Smiley Face after it... That was not meant as a slap..but. as humor...

Man, are we getting a little jumpy on this thread???

4/16/2006 06:25:00 PM  
Blogger Cedarford said...

Larsen - C4, of the fifteen thousand billions we generate, 4 of them go to Israel (or, $1 of every $3,750), then come right back to our own defense industry, in return for weapons which Israel then deploys using--paying for--her own manpower, skill, location, infrastructure, and risk.

No, actually Israel's lobbyists have worked out yet another "except for Israel" privilege, where 1/4th of the US taxpayer aid may go to establishing defense industries in Israel - the products of which are often in direct competition with the US or provided to countries we prefer not have them, like Venezuela and Cuba.

All other countries that get defense aid have to spend that aid on US products - except Israel. Israel is also the only nation that is excepted from having to account for it's spending, and the only nation that gets it's booty lump sum, rather than in quarterly payments.

As for Israel then going forth with it's armed forces and giving us "value" by making the ME a friendlier, safer place for Americans to visit and do business in...no, it hasn't. Instead, 40 years of Israeli military adventure, arms escalation in the religion, and growing ideological animosity has made the ME exceptionally dangerous for Americans - who could once, prior to 1973, could consider the streets of Arab cities and remote villages of Iran, Pakistan, and Indonesia among the safest and most hospitable places Americans went.

Official US studies exploring the cost to benefits - diplomatic, military, strategic, and economic -of the US-Israel "Special Relationship" have never made it past the proposal phase - far too politically dangerous. Private studies have been done, as well as British, French, Russian, Turk studies on the costs to the US of it's Israel support to determine if it is rational in those spheres. And UN member states have high interest in the Israeli "ownership" of the US Security Council Veto - whether it can be removed, or how they could cultivate the US or another Security Council member to make that Permanent member's Veto available for their nation. The general consensus is that Israel is a far greater poltical, economic, military, and diplomatic liability to the US than it is an asset. The UN members have had some success with using the same tactics Israel has used - most recently Iraq, to buy Vetos through use of funds like "Oil for Food" to buy local Russian, Chinese, British, and French(US has 32 vetoes for Israel since 1973, more than all other members vetoes for their "contributors" put together.)

Buddy continues: Since the IDF is a staunch ally, just in terms of military power, what do we save?

Define "staunch ally". The only time the US and Israel were in the same war, firing weapons at the same time was in the area around the USS Liberty.

Israel is useless in any fight America gets in. Worse than useless, actually, because Israel feeds us false intel to get involved, then demands "special compensation" to stay out. As a pariah nation, we cannot base our Navy, AF, or troops there.

The Israelis have - or were - of some use as proxies in Latin American "dirty wars" before that got shutdown, and did give us some Soviet weapons intel for a low, low fee....but we have found that is more than balanced by learning how much the Israelis gave to the Soviets about our weapons secrets to open the Jewish refugee immigration spigot once Communism had really soured for Soviet Jews as they saw the west getting rich. And, after Russia's fall, how much China has gotten of Israeli-obtained US military technology for pure hard cash for top Israelis - whom of course they refuse to prosecute or extradite.

An example as the Patriot Missile in the Gulf War. Israel pressured us to give many of the batteries covering our troops to it, or they threatened to send IDF into Iraq and wreck the Coalition. Then demanded 2 billion on top of their usual 4 nillion as "compensation" for Scud "pain, anguish, and damages" they were forced to take. Two years later, the US discovered the Israelis had sold the Patriot radar and fire control system to the Chinese.

4/16/2006 06:32:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

j-j-jumpy ?

4/16/2006 06:33:00 PM  
Blogger Tony said...

Buddy sez: since no ally of ours can ever know for sure when we'll up and elect another peanut charismatic who'll sell their ass down the river.

And that ain't the half of it! The next morning your up on the roof during your routine, and it's dusty, dust is like fog in downtown Jo'burg. They dug diamond minds right in the middle of the city, and from the roof of the International you can see barren white hills, little mountains, right in the middle of the city, between the crowded buildings and streets.

They process whatever is a mile down under the ground with the diamonds, I think they process it with arsenic or some other poisonous chemical. Then they just piled it up into these white mounds, from which gritty, floury dust blows off all the time. The cars are always covered with this dust, everything is. So, you don't feel like jogging there.

So you're up on the roof, in the clearest air you can reach, exercising, breathing deep.

Fifteen years later you are reading Aviation Week and you hear that South Africa lit off a nuclear weapon in the atmosphere, out over the ocean, on such and such a date. You go check your passport, your entrance and exit dates, and dammit samuel!

You thought those two soldier truckers (they're all soldiers there) were scary, you thought having to exercise on the damn roof was a hassle ... and while you thought it was bad enough you were breathing arsenic grit or some chit ... you were actually sucking in atomic weapon debris!

4/16/2006 06:40:00 PM  
Blogger DanMyers said...

C4,

Was that last post a ploy to get Mətušélaḥ back in the conversation? No, really...was it?

Can't say about current military, but I know back in the mid-to-late 70's our Navy spent a LOT of time near J(H)aifa and Tel Aviv... I mean a LOT of time. No bases, but there certainly was a presence. Joint manuevers and all.

So, were you in the military? Sorry , I haven't been around here that long.

4/16/2006 06:49:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

and the link to that is where, allen?

Whether a political committee decides someone is innocent or "not guilty" means little in the perception of reality, ask OJ.

That is the point of the discussion, from my perspective.

The realitive truths of what occurred in '67, what the "Offical" Storry is does not matter'

The Warren Commission or the Congressional Inquiry on JFK's assassination, they came to different conclusions as to the "Second Shooter".
Which is Truth?

Which General or Admiral do we believe?

4/16/2006 06:52:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Let me see, C4, are you saying that you don't approve of the alliance--I get that drift somehow.

Yes, you're right--I don't know about your discrete assertions (I somehow think there must be more to the Patriot story), but the thrust of your post is that America would have Radical Islam as its friend if only we would renounce Israel. I agree with you--you're dead right. America would probably be very welcome as an ally of Iran, Syria, and AQ. All you need to do is get enough of DC to agree, and we can jump sides. Who needs all those old western ideas anyway.

4/16/2006 06:53:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

jeez, tony--that reads like a story i read about Manhattan, where these Arab terrorists crashed a buncha planes into skyscrapers, and people were wandering around breathing their brokers, insurance agents, and secretaries. What kinda crazy sh*t is THAT ?

4/16/2006 07:03:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

But no asbestos, buddy. That would have been enviormentally unsound, to have put asbestos on those I beams. The survivors of the fire could have got lung cancer of somethin'.
Instead the building collapses, fewer cancer causing particulates, that way, I guess.

Misplaced Governmental priorities?

4/16/2006 07:09:00 PM  
Blogger Tony said...

Okay, let's be serious for a sec. I'd love to see a link, say FAS or comparable, where Israel sold Patriot technology to PRC.

I know we've done joint development on the missile defense issue, and we share technology on the Arrow / Patriot family.

In the Real World, History says:
The New York Times and the Washington Times acknowledged publishing tainted intelligence reports on Israeli weapons transfers and blamed their sources. On April 4, the New York Times tried to make amends for its premature editorial that had blasted Israel. Noting that Israel was found `not guilty' of the Patriot missile transfer charge, the Times editorialized that the `U.S. officials who hurried to publicize the allegation before all the facts were in owe Israel an apology.'

On April 13, the Washington Times published a lead editorial that also criticized government leakers for feeding the press false information. The editorial, which conceded that the paper had printed the original unsubstantiated report on the Patriot transfer, enumerated the charges and counter-charges that had been reported subsequently in the Wall Street Journal and in the Evans and Novak-Rosenthal exchanges. `The blame,' the Washington Times concluded, `lies not with the press, which is reporting what it finds out, but with whomever is doing the leaking of spurious accusations.'

The Washington paper also chastised the `highest officials' in the Bush administration for failing `to say anything on Israel's behalf to counterbalance the feeding frenzy in the press that the [original] leak set off. They now owe Israel an apology for allowing the erroneous report to further undermine relations between the two countries.'

To be fair, perhaps the New York Times, The Washington Times--and much of the Fourth Estate--should apologize as well.


Congressional Record, OFF TARGET -- (BY STEVEN EMERSON) (Extension of Remarks - May 27, 1992)

[Page: E1536]

---

HON. CHARLES E. SCHUMER

in the House of Representatives

WEDNESDAY, MAY 27, 1992

4/16/2006 07:11:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

allen
I guess you believe the 9-11 Commission the Final Word on Federal preperation prior to 9-11, despite the deletion of the Able Danger data?

4/16/2006 07:11:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Wrongo, 'Rat:
Lower stories, LOTS of them were Asbestos covered.
THEN they became environmentally aware, and used a substitute, ala the ENVIRONMENTALLY SENSITIVE FOAM on the Shuttle Tanks.
Must be enviro correcto ya know.
...towers would have gone eventually but longer.
I STILL WANT TO KNOW:
Why no Helicopters on the roofs.
I don't buy that it was too drafty and such.
RWE, Tony, Helo, please help!

4/16/2006 07:16:00 PM  
Blogger Aristides said...

I would like to say a few things.

First, it's always unfortunate to trip over one of your ally's redlines. In social circles, such a redline is called an affront. Most of the time these redlines can be intuited; often times they are known. Just know this: to unknowingly cross a line is tactlessness; to purposefully cross a line is aggression. Both are frowned upon in polite society.

Secondly, this is a far-out theory, but I would like those still here to comment on it (assuming it is worthy of comment): what if this is a planned public separation of US and Israeli interests in anticipation of a massive Israeli attack on Iran? What if, much like in the Suez Crisis, Israel is preparing to make a first strike?

America would need plausible deniability, and a public, painful rift between America and Israel would be just the ticket.

Of course, one of the rebuttals would be that nothing moves without America knowing about it. Of course, America could claim that it did not want to risk war with a nuclear Israel by shooting down her planes.

I don't know. I'm sure there is a simpler, less-thought-out reason for this. But you never know.

4/16/2006 07:16:00 PM  
Blogger DanMyers said...

Not to change the subject, but.. D.R., did your son get back? I'm making the trip south next week. Remember something about you going to Panama with him when he got home.

4/16/2006 07:17:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Tom Woolfe's Daughter goes to Duke.
One of their La Cross? guys came to the busted stairs, looked down and went for it:
3 stories or so..
Broke his leg and Drug himself down 70 stories.
Tom asked his daughter what he was up to.
Daughter said last time she saw him he was drinking beer in front of a TV somewhere near campus!

4/16/2006 07:19:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Wasn't the official story that NOBODY made it out from above?

4/16/2006 07:19:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Damn, C4, looks like you're a victim of spurious falsified leaks. That's okay--so long as somebody goes to the trouble to find the facts, no lies will drift far.

4/16/2006 07:19:00 PM  
Blogger DanMyers said...

Doug,

You may want to faqcheck about Asbestos and the shuttle. Ceramic was used to take the heat of re-entry. Asbestos wasn't up to the task if I recall.

Also, there was expected wear of the tiles. So, make them small and replaceable was the engineering decision. A solid sheet of ceramic that would take strikes was considered to be unworkable. Hindsight says something else, though.

4/16/2006 07:21:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

He returned to Okinawa from Korea. He returns from there to the US in June, he's out of the Corps in August, taking about 60 days terminal leave.

4/16/2006 07:27:00 PM  
Blogger Tony said...

Doug gets us wondering, on 9/11, at the WTC, Why no Helicopters on the roofs.

ExHelo or RWE can tell us.

But I'm guessing it's because we handled it as a "police action" there at first. They weren't military choppers used to flying into hot LZ's, they were AMBULANCES in the air. That's not what they did.

And, you know, the first tower was hit at 8:45, the second at 9:03.
At 10:05, the South Tower collapsed. That's 62 minutes after it was hit. It's not like we had a ton of Navy/Marine/Army/AF/Coast Guard dust-off pilots gassed up and strapped in.

Just a wild guess.

4/16/2006 07:29:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

doug is, I think, speaking of the foam on the rocket boosters. The stuff that broke off and damaged the tiles on Columbia.

4/16/2006 07:30:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Nah, Dan:
I'm talking about the insulating foam on the disposable tank.

The stuff that chunked off all the time and eventually doomed it.

The early ones had a freon-filled foam and were more stable.
Enviros don't care.
It's the OZONE LAYER don'tcha know!

4/16/2006 07:32:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Doug is right--I remember the little blurb--an inferior material substituted when the best stuff became reg-yew-lated.

4/16/2006 07:35:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Thanks Tony.
My ignorance holds me innocent on Pollard.
Am curious if Liberty was in International Waters though.
Just for the record.
Was just reminded recently of Flight 707 that the Commies shot down with our Anti-Commie Congressman and all the rest of the innocents.
Damned Commies!
They AREN'T on our side!

4/16/2006 07:37:00 PM  
Blogger DanMyers said...

(assuming it is worthy of comment) - Aristedes

Aristedes, I have yet to see one of your posts that was not worthy of comment. I disagree with a few, just a few. Which makes you brilliant in my mind :-).

Timing in International politics is important. Would this split be properly timed at this juncture? We hear nothing of Isreal vis a vis Iran that doesn't show an unorganized polity after Sharon. I am not an expert or even well read on Isreali politics, but what I see, I shouldn't believe? What cover does Isreal get from this split? I thought that there were few air routes that Isreal could take and they were all over Iraq. Hard to cover re-fueling, but I guess that it could be done.

Once again, more questions, not much addition to the discussion...

4/16/2006 07:39:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

I think Israel has some missile Subs.
Belmonteers will know.

4/16/2006 07:42:00 PM  
Blogger DanMyers said...

Shot off the mouth a bit too quick Doug...

4/16/2006 07:42:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Fissile Missiles, even!

4/16/2006 07:42:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Not the first time Dan, 7:42 PM:
You should take your lessons from my always well-reasoned and restrained commentary!
...we'll let it pass this time.

4/16/2006 07:44:00 PM  
Blogger Tony said...

Since you asked Aristides what if this is a planned public separation of US and Israeli interests in anticipation of a massive Israeli attack on Iran?

How could there ever be plausible deniability? We have 200,000 troops in the region, we're at war, we must have every defense in our arsenal surrounding our people. That means we would have radars looking out in any plausible direction the Israelis could possibly approach. Right? Am I reading the maps wrong?

Oh, you mean they might come in over the top? No planes, just the Israeli equivalent of the Shahab? (Pershing, whatever)

C'mon, nobody's going that far.

4/16/2006 07:45:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

In the spirit of joviality that pervades this thread, of course.

4/16/2006 07:46:00 PM  
Blogger DanMyers said...

they used to have diesels (quiet li'l bastiches). Not sure about the missles, though.

4/16/2006 07:49:00 PM  
Blogger exhelodrvr said...

Israel doesn't have and ballistic missile subs. They may be able to launch cruise missiles from their subs, but I doubt that they would send their diesels to the waters closer to Iran, as that would be too difficult to get there undetected and too dangerous for them to operate in.

4/16/2006 07:51:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Israel Makes Nuclear Waves With Submarine Missile Test
Israeli defence sources claim the country has secretly carried out its first test launches from submarines of cruise missiles capable of carrying nuclear...
---
Israeli defence sources claim the country has secretly carried out its first test launches from submarines of cruise missiles capable of carrying nuclear warheads. The launches last month from German-built vessels in the Indian Ocean were designed to simulate swift retaliation against a pre-emptive nuclear attack from Iran.

I think Mat likes this idea better than letting them call Israel
"A One Bomb State"
w/o fear.
So do I.

4/16/2006 07:52:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Helo, that link refers to 900 mile range!

4/16/2006 07:53:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

It has been said that the Israelis are sublaunched missle capable. But I forget by whom.

Check this out doug,
Flip books the best thing yet in digital publishing, IMHO.

Excepting that the viewer needs a high speed conduit, or the download takes forever.

4/16/2006 07:56:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

This situation is rubbing a lot of people raw. 40,000 suicide bombers, eh?

4/16/2006 07:56:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

The Dolphin-class vessels are among the most technically advanced of their kind in the world. They are twice as big as the 23-year-old Gal-class submarines that the Israeli navy has relied on to date.

In a sign of the sensitivity of the project, elite crews have been assembled to man them: the 35 officers and men aboard each vessel have been nicknamed "force 700" because of the average 700 points they scored in psychological tests devised by the Israelis. The scores are equivalent to an IQ of 130-140.

Another five specially selected officers solely responsible for the warheads will be added to each vessel once the missiles are operational.
Don't mess with Yoni!

4/16/2006 07:58:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

I'll check it out later, 'Rat.
Flash has a real headstart, being pre-installed on lots of browsers, and Worldwide acceptance.
Meanwhile, Bud's on U-Tube watching fellow tubers watching fellow tubers.
G.. damned computer Potatoe!

4/16/2006 08:03:00 PM  
Blogger exhelodrvr said...

Tony,
I never read/heard anything about helos on 9/11 (I was already retired so I would not have had access to any info that came out to the military) but I could make the following educated guesses/questions:

Were their landing pads on the roofs? A lot of skyscrapers don't have those; it is not a requirement everywhere.

Was there easy access to the roof? I am guessing not, as I would think that a lot of people would have gone there hoping for a helo to pick them up.

There would not have been a lot of military helos available on short notice, but all the air ambulances and police helos could certainly have picked people up if it were "do-able".

It would have been extremely drafty up there, just a couple of hundred feet above the fire, and they may not have been able to land.

If there was a landing spot available, and the winds were manageable, I would be extremely surprised if none of the law enforcement helos attempted to do that, given the extreme heroism shown by the rest of the emergency personnel.

SO my guess is that either there was no place to land, or the winds made it impossible.

4/16/2006 08:04:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

6:16 AM - Bud watches Nornna watching Chicken Little.

4/16/2006 08:05:00 PM  
Blogger DanMyers said...

D.R.,

Tell him thanks from the Myers family. Night y'all.

4/16/2006 08:08:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Helo,
They would have needed some equipment to break in also.
That La Cross player still blows my mind.
Too bad a bunch didn't go there and drop furniture foam and etc below for better landing odds.
Rope would have been a Godsend.

4/16/2006 08:08:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

buddy
This fellow from England thinks it is worse than that.

" ... The Iranian plan is simple: playing the diplomatic game for another two years until Bush becomes a "lame-duck", unable to take military action against the mullahs, while continuing to develop nuclear weapons.

Thus do not be surprised if, by the end of the 12 days still left of the United Nations' Security Council "deadline", Ahmadinejad announces a "temporary suspension" of uranium enrichment as a "confidence building measure". Also, don't be surprised if some time in June he agrees to ask the Majlis (the Islamic parliament) to consider signing the additional protocols of the Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty (NPT).

Such manoeuvres would allow the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) director, Muhammad El-Baradei, and Britain's Foreign Secretary, Jack Straw, to congratulate Iran for its "positive gestures" and denounce talk of sanctions, let alone military action. The confidence building measures would never amount to anything, but their announcement would be enough to prevent the G8 summit, hosted by Russia in July, from moving against Iran.

While waiting Bush out, the Islamic Republic is intent on doing all it can to consolidate its gains in the region. Regime changes in Kabul and Baghdad have altered the status quo in the Middle East. While Bush is determined to create a Middle East that is democratic and pro-Western, Ahmadinejad is equally determined that the region should remain Islamic but pro-Iranian. Iran is now the strongest presence in Afghanistan and Iraq, after the US. It has turned Syria and Lebanon into its outer defences, which means that, for the first time since the 7th century, Iran is militarily present on the coast of the Mediterranean. In a massive political jamboree in Teheran last week, Ahmadinejad also assumed control of the "Jerusalem Cause", which includes annihilating Israel "in one storm", while launching a take-over bid for the cash-starved Hamas government in the West Bank and Gaza. ... "

the Telegraph "The frightening truth of why Iran wants a bomb"
By Amir Taheri

" Amir Taheri is a former Executive Editor of Kayhan, Iran's largest daily newspaper, but now lives in Europe "

That is not even the whole story. Read the rest.

4/16/2006 08:08:00 PM  
Blogger Aristides said...

D.M.,

I appreciate that, and you bring up all the difficulties with such a theory. If America and Israel have secretly decided, for political reasons, that Iran's nukes are a regional problem (i.e. Israel's problem), how do they proceed and still realize the political benefits of a non-American aerial assault (and Tony, I am not ruling out a massive missile salvo via sub)?

One way would be to separate the concept America from the concept Israel in a public display of animosity towards each other. Your question about timing is right-on here, because political benefits must be timed to actually be benefits. I simply don't know how the highest minds calculate these things, but it seems to me an Israeli attack in three to four months (August), coupled with Iranian counterattacks and the inevitable American response, would give Bush the political advantage of being strong while removing the political liability of being precipitous. Three to four months of public opprobrium, flowing both ways between America and Israel, seems just the right amount of time to have it sink in. At least to me.

I must say that I arrive at these conjectures with a fair level of assumptions. I take it for granted that Bush, in dealing with Iran, does not want to be seen as a unilateral aggressor--for obvious reasons. A while back I pondered on the possibility of Bush goading Iran into rash action to bypass the stigma of aggression. I still think it is a strategic imperative of America to not be an instigator. Therefore, I analyze our strategy in this light.

Two, I also take it for granted that Israel will not allow Iran to go nuclear. Given this, the question is not whether we will have war, but who will start it.

Three, I assume that the high-art of misdirection is not dead in geo-politics. I take for granted that the media can be manipulated for these purposes.

But again, this is all pie-in-the-sky conjecture. To be honest, I don't think our government is that capable, or that artful. But again, who knows? The Suez Crisis was not that long ago.

4/16/2006 08:12:00 PM  
Blogger exhelodrvr said...

A nine hundred mile cruise missile would have access to about 70% (that is a guess from eyeballing a map) of Iran, if launched from the far eastern Med somewhere. Tehran would definitely be within range. So they would not have to put their subs in danger to be able to accomplish that mission. I would be surprised if the Israelis did not have some capability to land-launch cruise missiles, which would give them coverage on another 50 miles or so. And the same for air-launched cruise missiles.

4/16/2006 08:15:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

"Such manoeuvres would allow the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) director, Muhammad El-Baradei, and Britain's Foreign Secretary, Jack Straw, to congratulate Iran for its "positive gestures" and denounce talk of sanctions, let alone military action. "
---
It's worked like a charm so far:
Not too hard when dealing with suicidal moron multinationalists.

4/16/2006 08:19:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

If the Israelis attack Iran, it could not be massive enough to seriously set the Iranians back.
At least according to General McInenny of the USAF and FOX News.

His plan called for 1500 aim points within Iran that had to be hit for success. Some multiple times.

Those Israelis, though fearless and resolute, do not have that kind of capability, do they?

4/16/2006 08:24:00 PM  
Blogger Aristides said...

I also assume this: one of the effects of the past 60 years is that Israel has become quite used to being labeled an "international pariah." The problem with such a creature is that it tends to become impervious to being called, once again, an "international pariah."

Such a country is politically primed to carry out an unpopular action.

4/16/2006 08:25:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Nuke are rather heavy handed from our perspective, but I guess if they were calling this a
"One Bomb Island"
I might reconsider!

4/16/2006 08:27:00 PM  
Blogger Aristides said...

As to their capabilities, I do not know. They may have just enough capability to damage Iran's nuclear infrastructure, while leaving Iran's retaliatory measures in place. Then Bush would get his pretext.

4/16/2006 08:27:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

It was a lot more fun when we used to discuss Nukie instead of Nukes.

4/16/2006 08:30:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

...not that one is any more hazardous than the other.

4/16/2006 08:31:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Paris and Lndon would still burn. To think the US would not "fade the heat" for Israel's actions, flying across US monitored Iraqi airspace, is less than serious.

There is not enough time, unless the Israelis attacked another US flagged ship, to facilitate a "divorce" that would be acceptable in the Court of Public Opinion.

The question "Is Paris burning?" would live again.

4/16/2006 08:31:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Paris Hilton on Fire?

4/16/2006 08:33:00 PM  

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