The only thing in that article that's worthwhile was this "Public knowledge of imminent Public Health threats negatively affects supply chains and the logistics planned responses" aka panic.
The rest is hypothetical. We could also be hit by that 24 karat solid gold meteorite as big as Manhattan.
Current data indicates that without any precautions one Ebola patient infects less than two people. This is small for contagious diseases we are familiar with. The factor for Measles is almost 20. Flu is around 5.
Ebola outbreaks should be quickly contained anywhere it turns up in the developed world.
[Ynet] With fresh exchange of accusations between Netanyahu and Abbas, how can Egyptians bring about a solution acceptable to all parties involved -- in Jerusalem, in Ramallah and in Gazoo?
Should we or should we not send out invitations for the resumption of the Cairo negotiations? This is the dilemma facing the Egyptians these days as they consider whether they should suspend the indirect talks between Israel and the Paleostinians.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's address to the United Nations ...an organization originally established to war on dictatorships which was promptly infiltrated by dictatorships and is now held in thrall to dictatorships... General Assembly was closely followed by officials at the presidential palace in Cairo and at the Egyptian intelligence headquarters. But it contained no sensational surprises as far as they are concerned.
Egypt is the third party in the conflict between Israel and the Paleostinians. It is involved, it shuttles between the sides, smooths things over and is in a waiting position with the hopes of gaining some kind of international bonus.
It's true that all of a sudden, after Paleostinian President the ineffectual Mahmoud Abbas ... a graduate of the prestigious unaccredited Patrice Lumumba University in Moscow with a doctorate in Holocaust Denial... ' "genocide speech" and Netanyahu's frontal assault which followed, it seemed that everyone had stopped playing by the rules. Who will turn on a green light here to talk to a delegation led by a "Holocaust denier" who has even been defined as a liar?
Netanyahu basically pulled out a new road map on Monday evening, when he revealed without blinking the names of the Arab capital Israel maintains open-secret relations with: Cairo, Amman, Riyadh, the emirate of Abu Dhabi "and elsewhere."
And after reciting the chant "I'm ready to make a historic compromise," Netanyahu dropped a bomb: First peace with Arab countries -- and only when this peace is achieved, and how knows when that will happen, it will be the Paleostinians' turn.
With the new neighborhood arrangement, with Abbas determined to appeal to the UN institutions and the International Criminal Court ... where Milosevich died of old age before being convicted ... in The Hague against Israel, and with Netanyahu announcing that Hamas, always the voice of sweet reason, is ISIS and the other way around and holding Abbas responsible for Hamas' war crimes, Egypt is now facing a triple dilemma: How to send out invitations to the indirect talks, how to run back and forth between the scarred sides, and mainly how to lead them to a solution which all three sides -- in Jerusalem, in Ramallah and in Gazoo -- will accept.
Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sissi and intelligence chief Mohammed al-Tuhami really couldn't care less about the negotiations. The war on Islamic terror and the intelligence coordination are their top priority. Their opinion about Hamas is exactly what Netanyahu says and they have no problem declaring, in closed forums at least, that Abbas delivered a "delusional and stupid speech."
Back to the Cairo talks: The Egyptians got lucky with the Moslem holiday of Eid al-Adha and the series of Jewish High Holidays. Egypt is not even thinking about giving up on its status as a regional mediator. It will let the harsh words die down, and hold a round of talks in Jerusalem and Ramallah.
The Egyptians see Abbas as the partner, not Khaled Mashal and his gang. After the holidays, you'll see, they will set a date and send out invitations. But the main question is: What for? There is a pessimistic wind blowing in Cairo as well, and they understand very well that after all the hot air, there is no Paleostinian state in the horizon.
We've all gotten used to the idea that Washington isn't working well because of partisan clashes that have brought relations between the White House and Congress to a standstill.
Congress deserves the scorn it receives from the public; its approval rating is somewhere around 15 percent.
But incompetence isn't the cause of gridlock; rather, gridlock is the result of passionate and profound disagreements. Nor is gridlock caused by confusion; everybody knows perfectly well what is going on.
The same can't be said of the administration, which is awash in incompetence and confusion, much of it deliberate. Consider:
In the past week, the question has arisen whether the president refused to acknowledge the rise of ISIS over the past year or whether the intelligence community underestimated the threat.
Either the president is right and the intelligence community has presided over its worst failure since the Iraq war, or he's wrong (or lying) and simply closed his eyes to a situation he did not wish to see. No matter which is true, it's a disaster.
"...agency, policy by policy, President Obama and his administration are running off the rails."
Soul train administration? Seems more like the jive a$$ administration. He never really got on the rails. He is totally out of his depth. He never had a real job prior to the President. Many of the people around him are the of the same ilk. For example, Boeseker said yesterday, that Maria Harf or was it Josh Ernest or was it Jen Psak should have returned to the sorority to do whatever they do in sororities.
[Ynet] For too long, US president tried to avoid a real discussion of Islam's role in global politics, and especially of its attitude towards Western culture.
In the past few years, we have been witnessing a troubling phenomenon in American politics: The White House's ongoing foreign policy failure has been denied and even concealed by President Barack Obama If you have a small business, you didn't build that... 's supporters in the administration, in the Democratic Party and in the liberal media.
The president's supporters argued, sometimes rightfully, that the criticism directed at him is automatic, unrestrained, stems from extreme rightist motives and is even driven by racism.
Only recently, the administration was exposed to criticism from within the Democratic camp itself over its failures in the Middle East and on the Russian front. Will this criticism cause the administration to sober up and change its direction?
The radicalization in the internal American discourse between right and left has inflicted huge damage on America and the free world. It has prevented the administration from viewing the world properly and has caused serious people, among both the Democrats and Republicans, to get caught in the bleeding political battle.
Many claim that President B.O., perhaps because of his introvert nature, is very much responsible for this dynamic. In fact, even his associates believe that the president led an arrogant worldview in the withdrawal of US troops from Iraq and from Afghanistan.
Two secretaries of defense who served in Obama's administration, Robert Gates and Leon Panetta ...current SecDef, previously Director of the Central Intelligence Agency. Panetta served as President Bill Clinton's White House Chief of Staff from 1994 to 1997 and was a member of the United States House of Representatives from 1977 to 1993.... , joined the criticism against him last week. They are not suspected of being rightists. They both say that the withdrawal from Iraq at any cost and the hesitant conduct in Syria led to the rise of the Islamic State ...formerly ISIS or ISIL, depending on your preference. Before that al-Qaeda in Iraq, as shaped by Abu Musab Zarqawi. They're very devout, committing every atrocity they can find in the Koran and inventing a few more. They fling Allah around with every other sentence, but to hear the pols talk they're not really Moslems.... organization, and Gates has even warned that the current policy of striking from the air is naïve.
Their voices join the implied criticism of Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Martin Dempsey, who indicated last week that America may have to change its strategy and use ground forces in its battle to destroy ISIS. Obama's mantra that "there will be no boots on the ground," General Dempsey warned, is not a strategy.
Prof. Anne-Marie Slaughter, one of Obama's associates in shaping the foreign policy, wrote against the president as well, and even senior advisor Dennis Ross, which is careful about what he says, blasted the president's illusions that "Islamists can be our friends." Former President Bill Clinton ...former Democratic president of the U.S. Bill was the second U.S. president to be impeached, the first to deny that oral sex was sex, the first to have difficulty with the definition of is... said it was wrong to use the racist card against the president's critics and ruled that Obama would be judged by results.
This criticism joins many voices in Washington, the Western world and Europe, which want to know in which direction the president is headed.
Obama has more than two years left in the White House. This is a long period which must not be defined as a "dead period." The fact that some of the Democrats have joined the right's criticism about the passiveness of the foreign relations may serve as a catalyst for real change, but on the other hand, the progressive left is condemning the president for getting overly involved.
For too long, Obama tried to avoid a real discussion of Islam's role in global politics, and especially of Islam's attitude towards the Western culture. He sought reconciliation with the Islamic world, and even adopted a language completely denying the claims that Islam, as a religion and as a culture, is an antithesis of an open society and democracy.
Obama therefore avoided making a clear distinction between allies and evil force, as President George W. Bush had done, and focused on the al-Qaeda terror as if it were an Islamic mutation rather than a deeply rooted ideological perception. Even when he spoke about ISIS, he argued that the organization "speaks for no religion. Their victims are overwhelmingly Moslem, and no faith teaches people to massacre innocents."
Such claims, and Obama's refusal to stress that there are key elements in Islam, not just marginal ones, which sanctify murder, enslavement of women, hatred of Jews and Christians and of course terrorism, prevented him from adopting a coherent policy in regards to the Middle Eastern battles.
In his recent UN address, the president appeared to be changing his approach. While he is still refusing to accept the principle of "the clash of civilizations," as he said, he has begun defining more clearly the borders of the outline of the open society versus the threats of radical Islam.
Just like he changed his mind on gay marriage. It is possible but he must get a political benefit to change his mind and since he is no longer running for elected office I do not predict any change from his 'drive and putt' foreign policy.
In case you non-Jews haven't noticed, we Jews bicker a lot. Some of us even have bad things to say about Albert Einstein. A fair number of us have bad things to say about Karl Marx. Or about Milton Friedman -- to go the other way. (Yes, I think Friedman was a lot smarter than Marx.)
So it should be no surprise that Benjamin Netanyahu is only intermittently popular in his home country. At the height of the recent Gaza war, he was a hero on the level of King Solomon, but then, after things quieted down with a relatively indeterminate conclusion, he was, well, just another pol.
So here we go again: we're counting the RAF Tornado GR4 warplanes as they take off from Cyprus to attack Islamic fighters in Iraq; and then we're counting them safely back to base. Only this time, our main interest is focused not so much on the number of warplanes flying back from their combat missions, but whether any of them have actually managed to drop their bombs on the enemy.
Even at this early stage of Gulf War Three, as the military operation against Islamic State has somewhat ambitiously been labelled, it is pretty clear that it bears no relation to the two conflicts that preceded it. Back in 1991 and 2003, RAF pilots were in very real danger of being shot down by Iraqi air defences. By comparison, Islamic State fighters, so far as we know, have no meaningful air defences, which means that RAF bombers can operate with relative impunity.
Yet while the RAF and coalition warplanes operating over Iraq now enjoy the advantage of flying missions in uncontested air space, it seems they are finding it rather difficult to find suitable targets to attack. At least that is the conclusion we must draw from the combat sorties flown by the Tornados thus far; to judge by the full bomb payloads, which are clearly visible as they return to their base at Akrotiri, they are struggling to make serious inroads against the enemy.
Relying on air power alone to confront a resourceful and well-organised outfit such as Islamic State, as I have previously argued, was always going to be a tough call. This reliance, combined with the inability of our political classes to come up with a coherent strategy for dealing with this menace, means that we are now reduced to trying to engage with the enemy from a distance of around 15,000ft.
As numerous retired military chiefs, including Lord Dannatt, the former head of the Army, have warned since the military action was authorised last week, the Islamist threat can only seriously be challenged by combat forces on the ground. Moreover, these need to be forces capable of prevailing against the determined Islamist fighters which, to judge by the unconvincing performance of the Iraqis to date, are unlikely to be either the Iranian-backed Shia militias or the Kurds' Peshmerga fighters. But no politician of rank in either London or Washington is even contemplating committing ground forces to deal with the Isil threat.
As a result, the military action that has been authorised now looks more like a token gesture than any serious desire to see this menace destroyed. Indeed, nothing better illustrates the confused thinking in the Government's approach than its almost exclusive reliance on the RAF to tackle the Isil threat, when it has just spent the past four years dramatically reducing the number of combat squadrons to a level where it is barely able to cover its existing international commitments, let alone open up a new theatre of operations. As Air Chief Marshal Sir Michael Graydon, the former Chief of the Air Staff, has pointed out, the RAF had 30 combat squadrons at its disposal at the start of the 1991 conflict; today it has only seven. And demonstrating the exquisite lack of foresight with which our politicians these days approach military issues, the MoD is currently in the process of disbanding one of our three remaining Tornado combat formations.
Meanwhile, the Islamic State fighters, despite the coalition air strikes they have suffered in recent weeks, were yesterday reported to be involved in heavy fighting with Iraqi forces just a few miles outside the capital Baghdad. This is surely a damning illustration of the limitations of the West's military response.
* WORLD NEWS > BRITISH COMBAT PLANES NO MATCH FOR "ISLAMIC STATE" GROUND ATTACKS: REPORT.
The above notwithstanding, the crux for the US-NATO/EU vee the anti-ISIS fight is whether the Govts-States of the Arab League = Muslim ME can overcome their historical reluctance + fight fellow Muslim Jihadis in a "major/maximum effort" widout the US andor West having to always be in the lead???
Iff they can't, or won't, then the Bammer - USA is just wasting its time relying on a [pol correct?]Coalition.
During the seige of Benghazi I wondered why NATO planes from Greece or British RAF from their base at Akrotiri were not called for support. It now seems clear that the RAF is not up to much of anything.
the RAF had 30 combat squadrons at its disposal at the start of the 1991 conflict; today it has only seven. And demonstrating the exquisite lack of foresight with which our politicians these days approach military issues, the MoD is currently in the process of disbanding one of our three remaining Tornado combat formations.
The Few must be spinning in their graves.
Posted by: Mike Kozlowski ||
Need all that revenue to pay the infidel tax to their imported voters.
Every once in a while it's important to take a look at the details.
[ArutzSheva] "Persecution of Christians by Moslems throughout the Middle East is severe and has been progressively increasing in intensity. In the early twentieth century, Christians accounted for about twenty percent of the Middle East population. At present, this figure is estimated at around four percent.
"The persecution of Christians in the Paleostinian territories is less severe than in a number of other Moslem countries. Yet, it is still discriminatory and sometimes fatal. However, some men learn by reading. A few learn by observation. The rest have to pee on the electric fence for themselves... this is hidden from the international community, partly by false statements from several Paleostinian Christian leaders who are in alliance with the Paleostinian Authority (PA) and Hamas, always the voice of sweet reason,."
Justus Reid Weiner is an international human rights When they're defined by the state or an NGO they don't mean much... lawyer and a member of the Israel and New York Bar Associations. He would like to express his appreciation to intern Nataniel Lelental for his contributions to this project.
"A few among many more examples of persecution and discrimination of Christians in the Paleostinian territories illustrate their varied nature: In April 2013, the Christian Holy Family School in Gazoo was set on fire.
"Several months later, in June, five Christian schools in Gazoo were closed after a Hamas government order that prohibited mixed-gender schooling. Nominally, the regulation concerned all schools in Gazoo, yet the five Christian schools were the only such co-ed schools there.
"The Christian minority in Gazoo is tiny and consists of between one and two thousand individuals. According to the Greek Orthodox Church in Gazoo, five Christians were kidnapped in July 2012 and forced to convert to Islam. In a blurb, the Church stated that the police refused to intervene as Salam Salameh, a Hamas member of the Paleostinian Parliament, headed the organization that was responsible for the conversion.
"In July 2012, a court in Jericho sentenced a Christian to a month of imprisonment for eating in public during Ramadan. Five other people were also incarcerated Don't shoot, coppers! I'm comin' out! for the same conduct. The chairman of the PA Supreme Court for Sharia Law stated: 'We have to monitor the streets, and severely punish anyone who eats in public during Ramadan. This is the responsibility of the security forces...I call upon other non-Moslems to be considerate of Moslems' feelings.' This is in sharp contrast to Western societies, where the majority is usually called upon to be considerate of the minority.
"The Paleostinian Land Law prescribes the death penalty for selling land to Jews. Various Christians have testified that it is also enforced if land is sold to Christians. Several Christian owners have been extorted to give up their land to Moslems. In practice, the legal system in the Paleostinian territories provides them no recourse.
"Vera Baboun, the Christian Mayor of Bethlehem, wrote about the 2012 Christmas holiday season: 'This is the Bethlehem we also share with the world. A Bethlehem that is the natural coexistence between Christians and Moslems, an example for the rest of the region.'
"Yet, Baboun has been subject to a smear campaign in which she allegedly discriminates against Moslems. As a result, she and her family have been repeatedly threatened. She filed a complaint with the Paleostinian Authority, which she withdrew after intimidation by Fatah's armed wing.
"Steve Khoury, Pastor of the First Baptist Church of Bethlehem, said in May 2013, that Christians are facing continuous harassment. Due to this, many of them refrain from bearing crosses in public and carrying Bibles. He added that they are often told by Moslems to 'Convert to Islam. It's the true and right religion.' Khoury's church has been fire-bombed fourteen times.
"In December 2013, Samir Qumsieh, a Christian community leader from Beit Sahour near Bethlehem provided several examples of the intimidation the Christian community faces. He showed some examples of souvenirs sold by Christians around Bethlehem's Manger Square, including t-shirts of the Church of Nativity which do not bear crosses as would be customary. On another occasion Qumsieh stated: 'We are harassed but you would not know the truth. No one says anything publicly about the Moslems. This is why Christians are running away.'
"Paleostinian Authority President the ineffectual Mahmoud Abbas ... a graduate of the prestigious unaccredited Patrice Lumumba University in Moscow with a doctorate in Holocaust Denial... has stated: 'Christians are not a minority here. They are an integral part of the Paleostinian people. Orthodox, Catholics, Armenians, Assyrians, Lutherans, Anglicans, Copts, Melkites, Protestants and others, are all part of the rich mosaic of this free, sovereign, democratic, and pluralistic Paleostine we aspire to have, and as established in our Declaration of Independence and draft Constitution.'
"This was one of Abbas' many false statements, as Article 7 of that Constitution says: 'The principles of the Islamic Shari'a are a main source for legislation.'"
Weiner concludes: "Unless action is taken however, Paleostinian statehood may well lead to the creation of another Moslem state where minorities are brutally persecuted until additional major segments of them emigrate. The treatment and fate of the Paleostinian Christians is a litmus test of the true nature of Paleostinian rule."
Muslims believe that when they are a 100% majority, the return of the Mahdi occurs.
Christians believe that when the world is devoid of Christians due to persecution, mankind almost completely self destructs in wars and unusual natural disasters, but then Christ returns to what is left of the world to restore peace for a thousand years.
[AnNahar] The Islamic State ...formerly ISIS or ISIL, depending on your preference. Before that al-Qaeda in Iraq, as shaped by Abu Musab Zarqawi. They're very devout, committing every atrocity they can find in the Koran and inventing a few more. They fling Allah around with every other sentence, but to hear the pols talk they're not really Moslems.... group is holding out in Syria after a week of being pounded by U.S.-led air strikes, benefiting from its tactical flexibility, experts say.
Have the strikes halted IS progress?
While it is still too early to assess the full impact of the strikes that began on September 23, experts say IS fighters have abandoned some of their most prominent positions.
They are now less visible, said Rami Abdel Rahman, director of the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a monitoring group.
"Before there were jihadist patrols through the towns they controlled, but today they have disappeared."
At least in part this is because "the jihadists have blended in with the population," he added.
At the same time, he said they had placed military equipment in civilian areas in the east of the country, angering locals.
Thomas Pierret, a Syria specialist at the University of Edinburgh, said such re-deployments were not a major problem for IS.
"We're not talking about a regular army, but rather a relatively flexible organization that is not dependent on fixed infrastructure," he said.
The strikes have so far killed around 200 jihadists, according to the Observatory, but have failed to stall IS progress towards Ain al-Arab, a strategic Kurdish town on the Syria-Turkey border.
The group has taken five more villages around the town since the strikes began and, on Monday, advanced to within five kilometers (three miles) of it for the first time.
The coalition has bombed areas around the town, known as Kobane to the Kurds, but the raids do not appear to have halted the IS advance.
The group also continues to advance close to the Iraqi border, seizing territory in the eastern province of Hasakeh, according to the Observatory.
Is IS winning more support?
While Syria's opposition National Coalition welcomed the strikes, experts say the raids have also bolstered support for IS in some quarters.
"The fact that it's America that is carrying out strikes has pushed Syrian Islamists who detest IS to oppose the strikes and use the same terminology about a "crusader campaign against Islam," Abdel Rahman said.
His group says more than 70 jihadists have joined IS since the strikes began.
While the United States leads the coalition, warplanes from Bahrain, Jordan, Qatar ...an emirate on the east coast of the Arabian Peninsula. It sits on some really productive gas and oil deposits, which produces the highest per capita income in the world. They piss it all away on religion, financing the Moslem Brotherhood and several al-Qaeda affiliates... , Soddy Arabia ...a kingdom taking up the bulk of the Arabian peninsula. Its primary economic activity involves exporting oil and soaking Islamic rubes on the annual hajj pilgrimage. The country supports a large number of princes in whatcha might call princely splendor. When the oil runs out the rest of the world is going to kick sand in the Soddy national face... and the United Arab Emirates are also participating in the raids.
IS has faced a widespread backlash from a range of opposition groups since the beginning of the year, including Al-Qaeda's Syrian affiliate Al-Nusra Front.
But Aron Lund, editor of Syria in Crisis, a website run by the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, said there was a limited "closing ranks" among jihadists.
"The conflict between IS and Al-Qaeda's... (Al-Nusra Front) franchise in Syria is really deep, but you do see some jihadi preachers and online propagandists that seem reluctant to criticize IS too harshly at a time when they're in direct confrontation with the US."
The strikes have also been criticized by opposition members for failing to target Hereditary President-for-Life Bashir Pencilneck al-Assad Before going into the family business Pencilneck was an eye doctor. If he'd stuck with it he'd have had a good practice by now... 's regime and for killing at least 22 civilians and hitting infrastructure, including a flour mill.
Some members of the opposition have also been angered by the targeting of Al-Nusra because it has fought alongside other rebels in battles against both Assad and IS.
Have the raids hurt IS funding?
A number of coalition raids have targeted makeshift refineries in eastern Syria that experts and the U.S. military say net IS around $2 million (1.6 million euros) a day.
But some experts say the majority of the oil sold by IS is unrefined crude, extracted from several dozen wells that have not been targeted.
"These strikes will not affect its finances in a decisive fashion," said Romain Caillet, an expert on jihadist movements.
The U.S.-led coalition has also hit the entrance of the Conoco gas fields, which are key to electricity supply in Deir Ezzor and several other provinces, but is not a major source of revenue for the group, Caillet added.
Other sources of revenue include taxation and ransom from kidnappings, but it remains to be seen whether the strikes have disrupted the jihadists' ability to collect those funds.
By targeting refineries along with a mill and grain silos, the coalition could be hoping to squeeze local supporters of IS, hoping they "will rise up against it," Caillet said.
A fundamental goal of any serious military campaign would be the 'shaping of the battlespace.' Clearing Iraq first, thus leaving ISIS an 'avenue of egress' back into their former assembly areas in Syria might have been a more prudent strategy. Allowing them to push south toward Baghdad may have some unwelcomed, urban warfare consequences.
A multi-volume chronology and reference guide set detailing three years of the Mexican Drug War between 2010 and 2012.
Rantburg.com and borderlandbeat.com correspondent and author Chris Covert presents his first non-fiction work detailing
the drug and gang related violence in Mexico.
Chris gives us Mexican press dispatches of drug and gang war violence
over three years, presented in a multi volume set intended to chronicle the death, violence and mayhem which has
dominated Mexico for six years.