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Iraqi protesters defiantly turn out in the capital Baghdad
Today's Headlines
Headline Comments [Views]
Page 2: WoT Background
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Page 1: WoT Operations
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Page 3: Non-WoT
14 22:46 Goober Tingle7365 [360]
7 21:47 Zebulon Hupatle8044 [251]
10 15:31 European Conservative [259]
6 20:32 Frank G [284]
3 17:26 Lex [212]
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Page 4: Opinion
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4 14:18 Mullah Richard [667]
1 09:17 Lex [184]
7 12:49 magpie [397]
6 21:59 Jennie Horwitz [274]
Page 6: Politix
6 21:29 Zebulon Hupatle8044 [249]
17 17:35 Alaska Paul [373]
3 15:03 Bobby [233]
5 17:25 Lex [182]
5 10:04 Procopius2k [229]
7 17:42 Alaska Paul [330]
2 05:43 boomerc [163]
3 07:37 Lex [241]
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-Land of the Free
Pensacola – Marines, Sailors Line Road to Salute Family of Slain Naval Officer…
Posted by: BrerRabbit || 12/11/2019 04:56 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [140 views] Top|| File under:


-War on Police-
Cop-killer Betsy Ramos wins parole -- but gets sent right back to prison
[NYPOST] Another case of a good decision making bad law. I can't see how a sentence served for a crime at state level should be ignored at federal level, anymore than a sentence served at federal level should be prosecuted a second time at state level. What comes next? County court, followed by city court? There's that Constitutional thingy about double jeopardy.
Posted by: Fred || 12/11/2019 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [271 views] Top|| File under:

#1  That Constitution is only as good as the men and women empowered to interpret it. They basically left the room over 50 years ago.
Posted by: Procopius2k || 12/11/2019 7:37 Comments || Top||

#2  The constitutional prohibition against double jeopardy only applies to the sovereign attempting a prosecution. States and the federal government are separate sovereigns so prosecution by one sovereign does not prevent prosecution by another sovereign. Usually in practice the federal government prosecutes someone when the state or local government refuses to prosecute. In the instant situation the federal government had pending charges against Ramos for for matters other than the state charges for which she went to prison so double jeopardy is inapplicable in any event.
Posted by: BrujoTejano || 12/11/2019 9:13 Comments || Top||

#3  Double jeopardy also is meant to prevent the kind of SS that Rep. Al Green is suggesting for the impeachment.

(yes I know that impeachment is different but the idea that you keep trying someone over and over till you find a jury that will convict was the fear)

The feds get one chance to make their case they can't keep pitching when they lose.
Posted by: AlanC || 12/11/2019 9:45 Comments || Top||


Afghanistan
Afghan War Can End In Weeks if Pakistain just dies Denies Support to Taliban
[India Today] Afghan war can end in few weeks if Pakistan denies safe haven to Taliban: US top Senator Graham

The war in Afghanistan would end in a few weeks if Pakistan denied the Taliban safe haven, a top US Senator has said, urging the Trump administration that it should start negotiations with Islamabad rather than the Afghan insurgents to stop the deadly conflict.

The comments by Republican Senator Lindsey Graham came amid reports that the US has resumed talks with the Taliban in Qatar on Saturday, three months after President Donald Trump abruptly halted diplomatic efforts that could end America's longest war. Pakistan is said to be assisting the US in reopening the talks with the Taliban.

"As to negotiating with the Taliban, I think we got this wrong. I think what we should do is start negotiating with Pakistan. If Pakistan denied the Taliban safe haven in Pakistan, the war in Afghanistan would end in a matter of weeks," Graham, the senior Senator from South Carolina said in an interview to Fox Channel on Monday.

In September, President Trump called the year-long negotiation efforts "dead" and withdrew an invitation to the insurgents to join secret talks at his retreat at Camp David after the killing of an American soldier in Kabul.

Graham also said that he wants to change the "behaviour" of Pakistan.

"So, I want to try to get Pakistan to change their behaviour through a free trade agreement tied to security performances, then talk to the Taliban. I want as much leverage over the Taliban as possible to end this war, he said.
Good target, wrong ammo. Sigh... at least he's willing to accept the problem is in Pakistain. 'B-' for effort.
President Trump is keen to end the deadly war in Afghanistan that has claimed the lives of hundreds of American soldiers over the past 18 years.

Trump made a surprise visit to the Bagram Airfield, the largest US military base in Afghanistan late last month and met American soldiers. During the visit, Trump said the Taliban "wants to make a deal".
Posted by: Dron66046 || 12/11/2019 05:31 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [256 views] Top|| File under: Taliban

#1  BFO
Posted by: Procopius2k || 12/11/2019 7:47 Comments || Top||

#2  Well, stop giving support to Pakistan then. Their government will collapse in weeks.
Posted by: DarthVader || 12/11/2019 9:18 Comments || Top||

#3  #2 Perhaps but how would anybody tell the difference?
Posted by: Cesare || 12/11/2019 9:53 Comments || Top||

#4  #3 Their ambassadors world-wide will stop (i) condemning "defamation of Islam", (ii) begging for money.
Posted by: g(r)omgoru || 12/11/2019 9:57 Comments || Top||

#5  Stopping support is not much. They'll get it from China. I say bomb their families in Quetta. Kill the households of those because of whom other families are dying, the world is burning at no personal cost to them.
Posted by: Dron66046 || 12/11/2019 12:35 Comments || Top||

#6  Kill the households of those because of whom other families are dying

If that is the cure you lot will need to handle it, Dron66046. Our culture doesn’t go there.
Posted by: trailing wife || 12/11/2019 15:25 Comments || Top||


Confidential Documents on Afghanistan Released
[ToloNews] "157,000" Killed in the Afghan Conflict Since 2001: Documents.

More than 2,000 pages of previously unpublished "confidential" documents were released by the Washington Post on Monday containing, in many cases, very candid appraisals by government officials, diplomats, military officers and aid workers of the post-2001 war effort in Afghanistan. Many of the reports were critical of how the war was conducted‐on every level‐and how falsely it was reported up the chain of command and to the public.

Jeffrey Eggers, a retired Navy SEAL and White House official under Bush and Obama, asked in a Lessons Learned interview included in the collection:

"Why did we make the Taliban
...mindless ferocity in a turban...
the enemy when we were attacked by al-Qaeda? Why did we want to defeat the Taliban?"

Eggers also said: "Collectively the system is incapable of taking a step back to question basic assumptions."

Douglas Lute, an Army general who later became the US Ambassador to NATO
...the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. A collection of multinational and multilingual and multicultural armed forces, all of differing capabilities, working toward a common goal by pulling in different directions...
, told government interviewers in 2015: "We were devoid of a fundamental understanding of Afghanistan ‐ we didn’t know what we were doing," He added: "What are we trying to do here? We didn’t have the foggiest notion of what we were undertaking."

The Washington Post characterized the interviews as revealing that "senior US officials failed to tell the truth about the war in Afghanistan throughout the 18-year campaign, making rosy pronouncements they knew to be false and hiding unmistakable evidence the war had become unwinnable."

According to the documents, 157,000 people have been killed in Afghanistan since the US-led military invasion in the country in late 2001.

The document states that an estimated 43,074 Afghan civilians, 64,124 Afghan security force members and 42,100 Taliban fighters have died so far. Also, 7,295 foreigners--among them 3,814 US contractors, 1,145 coalition forces’ members and 2,300 American soldiers--have died as well.

One senior National Security Council official said the B.O. regime and Pentagon pushed metrics that portrayed the 2009 decision to surge 30,000 troops to Afghanistan in an inaccurately positive light:

"It was impossible to create good metrics. We tried using troop numbers trained, violence levels, control of territory and none of it painted an accurate picture," and "The metrics were always manipulated for the duration of the war."

Afghans responded to TOLOnews on Tuesday with reactions to the released documents:

"Not only me and the Afghan people, but the American people as well are not satisfied with what has been achieved in view of war expenditures," said Fida Mohammad Ulfat, a politician in Afghan parliament.

"The expenditures should have been spent on a series of plans, authentic programs and working strategies based on the ground realities and this would have helped to get a better outcome," said Mohammad Asif, the former governor of Parwan.
Posted by: trailing wife || 12/11/2019 00:11 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [250 views] Top|| File under:

#1 
The US is in the unenviable habit of seeking tigers to try to ride. I've been suspicious of the tallies and the 'heavy defeats' to the taliban, the 'devastating air attacks' and the 'scores killed !'

This data shows more civs and friendlies dead than tangos. It means utter loss. For once, I agree with Herb's take on the whole thing. Why the hell are you still there ? Is it to ensure some narrative that will surely lean against you if you leave ? The narrative at home will indict you if you don't leave !

There's just no shame or loss in admitting 'This fucking thing is too muslim for us, we're out.'
Posted by: Dron66046 || 12/11/2019 0:30 Comments || Top||

#2  Because this nation's elites (post-Nixon/Lissinger) don't do punitive expeditions and don't understand divide et impera.
Posted by: Lex || 12/11/2019 1:42 Comments || Top||

#3  *Nixon/Kissinger
Posted by: Lex || 12/11/2019 1:42 Comments || Top||

#4  These people have no idea what they're fucking doing and they're running US policy. The thing that they're good at is spending money. $3 million dollars a day? US Congress can't spend that kind of money and yet that's what a commander in Afghanistan was required to spend.

What's it going to take to get people to understand that the war in Afghanistan is about making money for the deep state/unelected government/military-industrial complex? They're not even bothering to try to win the war. They've been lavishly funded and if they were going to win the war, they would have done it by now. We've spent more in Afghanistan than we did in Germany on the Marshall Plan. And got fuck-all to show for it except wealthy bureaucrats.
Posted by: Herb McCoy || 12/11/2019 1:52 Comments || Top||

#5  If it were not for the heroin, I'd say it was a cultural ego thing, especially in the military-bureaucratic mindset. But as people have called out here, there's a great dearth of civilizational confidence anyway. Maybe the State Dept types are just the ones high on ego. Maybe their accounts are 'high' on something else ?
Posted by: Dron66046 || 12/11/2019 4:33 Comments || Top||

#6  Heroin, shmeroin. The international new class: from the lowest DMW clerk to highest bureaucrat/politician simply cannot admit to being wrong. Because if they'll admit to being wrong once ...
Posted by: g(r)omgoru || 12/11/2019 4:46 Comments || Top||

#7  ^ Does a DMW clerk only serve you if you drive an overpriced German car ? 😉
Posted by: Dron66046 || 12/11/2019 5:23 Comments || Top||

#8  Word to the wise....embrace the power of "and".

All of the reasons mentioned are part of the debacle. In varying amounts depending on the day.
Posted by: AlanC || 12/11/2019 7:06 Comments || Top||

#9  "Why did we make the Taliban the enemy when we were attacked by al-Qaeda? Why did we want to defeat the Taliban?"

"We will make no distinction between the terrorists who committed these acts and those who harbor them. "
George W. Bush, September 11th 2001

The original idea was to symmetrize an asymmetrical conflict by not acknowledging state sponsors' deniability whether plausible or not.

This idea was apparently scrapped no later than in October of 2001.

The lesson the world has learned from 9/11 is that facilitating and organizing a mass fatality attack on the US is NOT a suicidal mistake.

"Not only me and the Afghan people, but the American people as well are not satisfied with what has been achieved in view of war expenditures," said Fida Mohammad Ulfat, a politician in Afghan parliament.

Strategic retaliation after a massive attack wouldn't have been supposed to satisfy the enemy people. It would have been supposed to strengthen deterrence and dissuade further attacks.

Apparently the payment of danegeld and displays of political masochism aren't satisfactory either.

The engagement in Afghanistan is eroding deterrence and emboldening enemies.

Right now the least bad solution is precipitous withdrawal without any negotiations.
Posted by: Elmerert Hupens2660 || 12/11/2019 11:11 Comments || Top||

#10  ^.... yes, provided it be accompanied by the occasional massive, devastating, punitive JDAM-caliber strike.
Posted by: Lex || 12/11/2019 11:16 Comments || Top||

#11  The need is not to admit it didn’t work and walk away, the need is to win this existential war. We’ve at least got as far as admitting that current methods don’t work. Fine. Follow the negotiators home and carpet bomb them, wherever they live, even if it is in Quetta. Clone their cell phones and devices, figure out where their friends are calling from, and bomb there. Any civilians caught in the crossfire to be considered an example to the rest to stay far away from jihadis. Destroy the madrassas that are sending their graduates to join the fight.

They want asymmetric war? Let’s show them what asymmetric really means.

The alternative is to wait until Philadelphia looks exactly like Jalalabad.
Posted by: trailing wife || 12/11/2019 15:40 Comments || Top||

#12  Punish. Divide. Devastate.
Posted by: Lex || 12/11/2019 15:45 Comments || Top||

#13  Clone their cell phones and devices, figure out where their friends are calling from, and bomb there

Punish. Divide. Devastate.

If that ever becomes the intention, the US will find 75% of their work done for them. We're waiting for the Trump Presidency to stand firmly on it's feet. Most islamic countries that Imran has whined to know this. If India and the US simultaneously went after our respective enemies in the 'Stain, China would not come to its aid. Also, the Pak nukes would not help them if the conflict was kept LICO. Small bites by India, IDF-like ASM hits by the US on India supplied addresses. It would render the Islamic Republic helpless to fend off secessionist movements by Baloch and Khalistan rebels. Disintegration would follow into four provinces, leaving the Pakistani military leadership to either escape to England or retire to Karachi. China would have to renegotiate their OBOR thingy and deal with India, plus new provincial administrations. The hardest hits on Pak's security apparatus shall come from within in any event.

Here's hoping the Trump can lock a second term and reign in the domestic front, because that is of the utmost importance right now. A very strong hand is needed to keep your anti-nationals from just fubaring everything. Nothing short of a police fist will do. But that's just my opinion.
Posted by: Dron66046 || 12/11/2019 16:17 Comments || Top||

#14  We're waiting for the Trump Presidency to stand firmly on it's feet.

It is such a relief to hear that, Dron66046.
Posted by: trailing wife || 12/11/2019 17:48 Comments || Top||


Africa Horn
Sudan’s deposed al-Bashir questioned over 1989 coup: Lawyer
[ENGLISH.ALARABIYA.NET] Sudan’s former President Omar al-Bashir
...Former President-for-Life of Sudan He came to power in 1989 when he, as a brigadier in the Sudanese army, led a group of officers in a bloodless military coup that ousted the government of Prime Minister Sadiq al-Mahdi and eventually appointed himself head cheese. He fell out with his Islamic mentor, Hasan al-Turabi, tried to impose shariah on the Christian and animist south, resulting in its secessesion, and attempted to Arabize Darfur by unleashing the barbaric Janjaweed on it. Sudan's potential prosperity has been pissed away in warfare that has left as many as 400,000 people dead and 2.5 million displaced. Hee was overthrown by popular consent in 2019. Omar has been indicted for genocide by the International Criminal Court but nothing is expected to come of it...
appeared on Tuesday before a prosecutors’ committee over the 1989 coup that brought him to power, his lawyer said.

Al-Bashir was "brought to be investigated in the case of the alleged 1989 coup," said his lawyer, Mohammed al-Hassan, who did not attend the hearing.

The lawyer also told news hounds that in his view the hearing was "not a judicial matter, it’s a political matter."

In 1989, al-Bashir, a brigadier at the time, seized power in an Islamist-backed coup that toppled the elected government of prime minister Sadiq al-Mahdi.

The former president was himself ousted by the army in April of this year after months of nationwide protests against his iron-fisted rule of three decades.

On November 12, Sudanese authorities filed charges against al-Bashir and some of his aides for "plotting" the 1989 coup. The prosecution established a special committee for the case.

If found guilty, he could face the death penalty
or life imprisonment under Sudanese law.

Sudan is now ruled by a joint civilian and military sovereign council, which is tasked with overseeing a transition to civilian rule as demanded by the protest movement.

Al-Bashir is being held in Kober prison in a separate case, for which he has been on trial since August, on charges of illegally acquiring and using foreign funds.

A verdict is due in that case on Saturday.

On Tuesday, al-Bashir was taken from Kober prison to the prosecutor’s office in a convoy under strong armed protection.

After the hearing, which lasted about an hour, a crowd gathered in front of the prosecutor’s office, chanting "Kober prison - the best place for you!" and "you killed people!"

Wearing the traditional white Sudanese jalabiya and turban, al-Bashir raised his hands to the crowd, before he set off back toward Kober in the convoy.

Posted by: Fred || 12/11/2019 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [106 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Sudan


Africa North
'Total fiasco': Algeria student protesters rally against election
[Al Jazeera] Thousands of students have thronged the streets of the capital, Algiers, to call for authorities to cancel a contentious presidential election scheduled for December 12.

In the last of a series of weekly protests before the vote, the young demonstrators, who want root-and-branch political reforms and the departure of the country's ruling elite, were joined by workers, retired employees, and homemakers accompanied by their children.

Posted by: Fred || 12/11/2019 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [100 views] Top|| File under: Arab Spring


Two former Algerian PMs have been convicted and sentenced to lengthy prison terms
[TWITTER]

Posted by: Fred || 12/11/2019 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [83 views] Top|| File under: Arab Spring


Arabia
Gulf leaders emphasized the importance of maintaining unity between members of the six-nation Gulf Cooperation Council during the 40th Summit
[TWITTER]

Posted by: Fred || 12/11/2019 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [117 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Iran


Bangladesh
Kamal: Islam has no place for terrorism, militancy
You don't get out much, do you?
[Dhaka Tribune] Terming Bangladesh as a role model of curbing militancy and terrorism, Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan Kamal has aid Islam does not allow terrorism and militancy.

"We have successfully controlled militancy following the zero tolerance policy set by Prime Minister the loathesome Sheikh Hasina
...Bangla dynastic politician and current Prime Minister of Bangladesh. She has been the President of the Bangla Awami League since the Lower Paleolithic. She is the eldest of five children of Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, the founding father of Bangla. Her party defeated the BNP-led Four-Party Alliance in the 2008 parliamentary elections. She has once before held the office, from 1996 to 2001, when she was defeated in a landslide. She and the head of the BNP, Khaleda Zia show such blind animosity toward each other that they are known as the Battling Begums...
," he said on Tuesday.

Kamal was speaking as the chief guest at the closing ceremony of a two-day "National Conference on Preventing/Countering Violent Extremism 2019" at Bashundhara International Convention Hall, reports BSS.

Counter Terrorism and Transnational Crime (CTTC) unit of Dhaka Metropolitan Police organized the national conference in collaboration with Stop Violence Coalition Secretariat of UN, USAID and a non-government organization Rupantar.

CTTC Chief and Additional Commissioner of DMP MdMonirul Islam chaired the program.

Inspector General of Police (IGP) Dr Mohammad JavedPatwari and DMP Commissioner MdShafiqul Islam addressed the program as special guests.

Bangladesh is a role model in the world for rooting out militancy, the home minister said, adding: "Our law enforcement agencies are working coordinately to curb extremism and militancy."

He said Madrasas are not involved in producing Death Eaters because militancy has no place in Islam. "Peace loving people in this country never liked militancy. It is not accepted that militancy and terrorism will exist in this peaceful country," he added.

Mentioning that Bangladesh’s people do not give shelter to militancy, he said incidents of murder took place in the country, but people resisted those incidents unitedly.

"We have to engage our children in welfare activities so that they cannot get involved in extremism and violent activities," the minister added.

He urged the people not to believe all internet contents.

"We have to use our wit and knowledge to be sure which internet contents are believable and which are not," he added.

Posted by: Fred || 12/11/2019 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [190 views] Top|| File under:

#1 
For once, I am speechless.
Posted by: Dron66046 || 12/11/2019 0:12 Comments || Top||

#2  Kamal: Islam has not place, none. At least with humans.
Posted by: Woodrow || 12/11/2019 1:31 Comments || Top||

#3  What about taqqiya? Is there room for that?
Posted by: Mercutio || 12/11/2019 8:35 Comments || Top||


Caribbean-Latin America
US charges ex-Mexican official with taking bribes from cartel
[Al Jazeera] A former Mexican official has been charged in the United States with accepting millions of dollars of bribes from the Sinaloa drugs cartel, once run by Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman, to enable it to operate with impunity in Mexico, prosecutors said on Tuesday.

Genaro Garcia Luna, 51, was arrested in Dallas, Texas, on Monday, and is expected to be moved to Brooklyn, New York, to face the charges, the US Department of Justice said.

A lawyer for the defendant could not immediately be identified.

Posted by: Fred || 12/11/2019 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [220 views] Top|| File under: Narcos

#1  That would be pretty much most of the Mexican political establishment, wouldn't it? /rhet question
Posted by: Procopius2k || 12/11/2019 7:38 Comments || Top||

#2  How to arrest an entire failed state?
Posted by: Lex || 12/11/2019 8:06 Comments || Top||

#3  #1 That would be pretty much most of the Mexican political establishment, wouldn't it?
Posted by: Skidmark || 12/11/2019 15:55 Comments || Top||

#4  Triumphant DeepState = failure of the American [Republic] State
Posted by: Lex || 12/11/2019 15:58 Comments || Top||


The Grand Turk
Erdogan’s adventure in the Mediterranean via the Libyan gateway
[NPASYRIA] Erdogan's motives for signing two memoranda of understanding with Libya, specifically with the Presidential Council of Fayez al-Sarraj are many. The first memorandum is military, which gives The Sick Man of Europe Turkey
...the only place on the face of the earth that misses the Ottoman Empire...
the freedom to use the Libyan airspace, establishing military bases on Libyan territories without permission from its authorities, the second is marine and related to energy extraction from the Mediterranean Sea. Both memoranda provoked the Libyan, regional and international angry reactions.

What is remarkable about the Ottoman Turkish behavior after the signing of the two memoranda is the Ottoman Turkish parliament’s rushing to ratify them, and Ankara’s indifference to the rejecting responses, especially from the Libyan parties which considered the signing of the two memoranda in the manner that took place is illegal, as the signing of foreign agreements according to the Libyan al-Skheirat agreement requires the sign of all members of the Libyan Presidential Council, and they are nine members. While the one who signed the memorandum was only the president of the council, which lost the legitimacy when signing the two memoranda. Libya is also under Chapter 7 of the U.N. Security Council, which deprives it legally from the sovereign agreements.
Continued on Page 49
Posted by: Fred || 12/11/2019 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [158 views] Top|| File under: Sublime Porte


Government
The Afghanistan Papers: A Secret History Of The War. U.S. officials constantly said they were making progress. They were not, and they knew it, states a confidential trove of government documents.
[WashingtonPost] A confidential trove of government documents obtained by The Washington Post reveals that senior U.S. officials failed to tell the truth about the war in Afghanistan throughout the 18-year campaign, making rosy pronouncements they knew to be false and hiding unmistakable evidence the war had become unwinnable.

The documents were generated by a federal project examining the root failures of the longest armed conflict in U.S. history. They include more than 2,000 pages of previously unpublished notes of interviews with people who played a direct role in the war, from generals and diplomats to aid workers and Afghan officials.

"We were devoid of a fundamental understanding of Afghanistan ‐ we didn’t know what we were doing," Douglas Lute, a three-star Army general who served as the White House’s Afghan war czar during the Bush and Obama administrations, told government interviewers in 2015. He added: "What are we trying to do here? We didn’t have the foggiest notion of what we were undertaking."

With most speaking on the assumption that their remarks would not become public, U.S. officials acknowledged that their warfighting strategies were fatally flawed and that Washington wasted enormous sums of money trying to remake Afghanistan into a modern nation.
The text is extensively hyperlinked to the source documents. Please click through, because linking from external source isn't working.
John Sopko, the head of the federal agency that conducted the interviews, acknowledged to The Post that the documents show "the American people have constantly been lied to."
Two major consistent themes from the documents are‐

1.the manipulation on a mass scale of statistics fed to the public in order to hide the true disastrous nature of the war; and...

2.US leaders "turning a blind eye" to large scale theft of US tax payer dollars by corrupt Afghan officials.

The interviews are the byproduct of a project led by Sopko’s agency, the Office of the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction. Known as SIGAR, the agency was created by Congress in 2008 to investigate waste and fraud in the war zone.

In 2014, at Sopko’s direction, SIGAR departed from its usual mission of performing audits and launched a side venture. Titled "Lessons Learned," the $11 million project was meant to diagnose policy failures in Afghanistan so the United States would not repeat the mistakes the next time it invaded a country or tried to rebuild a shattered one.
The next time...Jesus. How about we stop invading countries? Just think of all the nice things we could have had with that $1,000,000,000,000. Bernie Sanders' "free college" plan, widely mocked as unaffordable, was $60 billion a year. Trump's wall is $25 billion one-time. We could have a continent-spanning fast rail system. We could have free medical care for all US citizens. What do we get instead? A worthless war that's old enough to go to college itself, thousands of dead Americans and hundreds of thousands more maimed for life physically or mentally, and no end in sight.
Posted by: Herb McCoy || 12/11/2019 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [260 views] Top|| File under:

#1  ...What we should have done, what we NEED to do, is level the goddamned place and leave then make it clear we will repeat the work as many times as needed until they figure it out.

No aid, no nation building, no NOTHING. If they want to live in the 12th century with an occasional dose of high-tech apocalypse, then let 'em.

Mike
Posted by: Mike Kozlowski || 12/11/2019 5:29 Comments || Top||

#2  When you have no defined goal you can not measure progress.
Posted by: AlanC || 12/11/2019 7:10 Comments || Top||

#3  As long as there is a Pakistan, you'll never will succeed in defeating their surrogates in Afghanistan.
Posted by: Procopius2k || 12/11/2019 7:35 Comments || Top||

#4  I see nothing in Mr McCoy's astute criticism to disagree with.

What's done is done. Bring this sorry effort to a conclusion.
Posted by: Lex || 12/11/2019 8:45 Comments || Top||

#5  CDR Salamander's take

Grab a cup of coffee or a sippee, but worth it.
Posted by: swksvolFF || 12/11/2019 17:41 Comments || Top||

#6  Anyone found to have lied to keep the war going should be forced to work in a vet home taking care of injured veterans for the rest of their days.
Posted by: rjschwarz || 12/11/2019 17:50 Comments || Top||

#7  ^ Post of the day. Seconded.
Posted by: Lex || 12/11/2019 17:54 Comments || Top||

#8  CDR Salamander's take

Serious reading that puts the Washington Post into perspective. Thank you, swksvolFF — I’ll finish it later.
Posted by: trailing wife || 12/11/2019 18:25 Comments || Top||


Home Front: WoT
FBI issued warning about gun loophole used by Pensacola shooter months ago
[Washington Examiner] Six months before a Saudi gunman opened fire at the Naval Air Station Pensacola in Florida last week, the FBI warned about the loophole he used to obtain a gun.

In May, the FBI issued a report, titled "Federal Hunting License Exception Could Be Exploited by Extremists or Criminal Actors Seeking to Obtain Firearms for Violent Attacks," warning "participating organizations" that receive briefings on relevant issues about the loophole, according to Yahoo News.

In it, the bureau encouraged businesses to be aware that "extremists and other criminal actors could exploit the federal statutory exception that allows non-immigrant visa holders" who normally cannot purchase firearms or ammunition to legally buy them "with a valid hunting license or permit."
Posted by: Besoeker || 12/11/2019 02:14 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [280 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Warning? Please tell me again who actually owns the 'Federal' background check process ?

WIKI - The National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) is a United States system for determining if prospective firearms or explosives buyers' name and birth year match those of a person who is not eligible to buy. It was mandated by the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act (Brady Law) of 1993 and launched by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) in 1998.
Posted by: Besoeker || 12/11/2019 2:21 Comments || Top||

#2  Exactly what you hunt with a hand gun?
Posted by: g(r)omgoru || 12/11/2019 4:48 Comments || Top||

#3  ...feral hogs in Texas?
Posted by: Procopius2k || 12/11/2019 7:44 Comments || Top||

#4  ^Crazy people. It takes 5 - 6 hits from an LMG to bling a wild hog down.
Posted by: g(r)omgoru || 12/11/2019 10:15 Comments || Top||

#5  Exactly what you hunt with a hand gun?

Around here, snakes with shot shell is the preferred tool vs. snakes.

Know a hog hunter. Someone didn't tell the hog it was dead. Lucky he had his handgun ready.

I'm going to throw a flag on this and go with military exemption. A hunting exemption is also a process, and not granted to any old visitor.
Posted by: swksvolFF || 12/11/2019 15:33 Comments || Top||

#6  It takes 1 good shot.
Posted by: ranture || 12/11/2019 15:48 Comments || Top||


India-Pakistan
No more international cricket at neutral venues for Pakistan: Ehsan Mani
[DAWN] Pakistain will no longer look for neutral venues to stage home international cricket matches.

"The onus will be on the other teams to tell us why they can't play in Pakistain," Pakistain Cricket Board chairman Ehsan Mani told the News Agency that Dare Not be Named on Tuesday.
Ummm... Searching for the right words to descibed thast statement... Oh, yeah. "Arrogant bastards." That about covers it.
"Our default position will remain that Pakistain is safe. We play cricket in Pakistain (and if) you want to play against Pakistain you have to come to Pakistain."

Pakistain's decade-long isolation from hosting test cricket ends on Wednesday when Sri Lanka will play at Pindi Cricket Stadium. The second test will be in Bloody Karachi
...formerly the capital of Pakistain, now merely its most important port and financial center. It is among the largest cities in the world, with a population of 18 million, most of whom hate each other and many of whom are armed and dangerous...
from December 19-23. The series is part of the world Test championship.

Sri Lanka was the last team to play a test in Pakistain in 2009. Terrorists attacked the teams bus in Lahore and eight people were killed. Several Sri Lanka players and team officials were maimed. The ambush shut the door on international cricket in Pakistain. The PCB organised almost all of its home matches in the United Arab Emirates.

In the last four years, the PCB staged short limited-overs tours against the likes of Zim-bob-we, the West Indies, Sri Lanka and a World XI to show the cricket world it could host tours safely.

Sri Lanka agreed to play two test matches in Pakistain only after it visited Karachi and Lahore three months ago and played an incident-free series of one-day internationals and Twenty20s.

Posted by: Fred || 12/11/2019 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [254 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Pakistan

#1  Our default position will remain that Pakistain is safe.

It's one thing to be delusional, but quite another to insist we all participate.

BTW, did they ever figure out that Benazir Bhutto thing?
Posted by: SteveS || 12/11/2019 14:50 Comments || Top||

#2  What Benazir Bhutto thing ?
Posted by: Dron66046 || 12/11/2019 14:57 Comments || Top||

#3  The death ? She was killed by the ISI for Musharraf. He got the taliban to proudly declare they did it. Then he got the CIA to get the US forces to kill the taliban guy who claimed it, tying up loose ends.
Posted by: Dron66046 || 12/11/2019 15:01 Comments || Top||


US blacklists Rao Anwar for 'serious human rights abuse' through fake police encounters
[DAWN] The United States on Tuesday blacklisted former Malir senior superintendent of police (SSP) Rao Anwar for engaging in "serious human rights
One man's rights are another man's existential threat.
abuse" by carrying out alleged fake police 'encounters' in which scores of individuals including Wazoo native Naqeebullah Mehsud were killed, the US Treasury Department said.

Anwar is among 18 individuals from six countries that the Trump administration has imposed economic sanctions on for suspected human rights violations. Two others have been banned from entering the US, including the former consul general of 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...
in The Sick Man of Europe Turkey
...the occupiers of Greek Asia Minor...
for his alleged role in the murder of Saudi journalist beloved martyr of journalism Jamal Khashoggi
......who was simultaneously a very well paid Washington Post columnist and a long time propagandist for the Muslim Brotherhood and Al Qaeda — he died while on the 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. Home of nutbag holy manYusuf al-Qaradawi...
i payroll, but previously wrote at the behest of then-Saudi intel chief Prince Turki al-Faisal......
. Tuesday's announcement was made in connection with International Human Rights Day.

"During his tenure as the Senior Superintendent of Police in District Malir, Pakistain, Rao Anwar Khan (Anwar) was reportedly responsible for staging numerous fake police encounters in which individuals were killed by police, and was involved in over 190 police encounters that resulted in the deaths of over 400 people, including the murder of Naqeebullah Mehsood," the US Treasury said in a statement.

Posted by: Fred || 12/11/2019 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [131 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Pakistan


Iraq
Peshmerga of all stripes receive intensive counter-Islamic State training
[Rudaw] At a military base in Bnaslawa, Erbil, Peshmerga forces receive training from the Kurdistan Training Coordination Center (KTCC).

Participants receive two months of training for ten hours a day. This particular group of trainees is made up mostly of Yezidi women.

Fighters receive training in attack, defense and rescue.

"This will teach us how to conduct military attacks, how to withdraw, and how to deal with the injuries. It helps us deal with roadside kabooms," Peshmerga member Herish Abdulrahman says.

A US-led, counter-ISIS coalition is in charge of the KTCC. Established in 2014, the 81-country coalition supported the Peshmerga in the fight against the Islamic State
...formerly ISIS or ISIL, depending on your preference. Before that they were al-Qaeda in Iraq, as shaped by Abu Musab Zarqawi. They're really 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 western pols talk they're not really Moslems....
group (ISIS).

One of the coalition’s focuses has been the counter-ISIS training of Peshmerga. Over 40,000 Peshmerga have so far received training.
Posted by: trailing wife || 12/11/2019 00:27 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [107 views] Top|| File under:


As Iraqis protest against state, tribes make a comeback
[Rudaw] Iraqi protesters have clashed with police and torched government offices, a premier has resigned and precious blood spilt. As modern institutions collapse, a centuries-old force is making a comeback: Iraq’s tribes.

With their own hierarchies, moral and justice codes, not to mention huge arms caches, tribes have once again become among the most powerful actors in Iraq’s rural and oil-rich south.

They have a history of revolt, turning against the British colonising forces in a major boost to the 1920 uprising that led to the country’s independence.
Continued on Page 49
Posted by: trailing wife || 12/11/2019 00:12 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [154 views] Top|| File under:

#1  and precious blood spilt.


Opinion.
Posted by: AlanC || 12/11/2019 7:00 Comments || Top||


Israel-Palestine-Jordan
In tacit threat, Israeli intel firm releases photo of suspected Iranian tunnel
[IsraelTimes] Satellite images show apparent underground storage passage on an alleged IRGC base in eastern Syria, near the Iraqi border.
Photos can be seen at the link, with the customary circles, arrows, and explanatory paragraphs.
In an apparent threat, an Israeli intelligence firm on Tuesday released photographs of what it said is an Iranian tunnel being dug along the Syria-Iraq border to assist in the movement of weapons throughout the Middle East.

According to the private satellite image analysis company ImageSat International, the tunnel is likely being used to store Iranian missiles en route to Tehran’s proxies throughout the region.

Continued on Page 49
Posted by: trailing wife || 12/11/2019 06:30 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [254 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Iran

#1  Collapse the entrance and overpressurize with bunker busters. Watch for secondaries. Rinse. Repeat
Posted by: Frank G || 12/11/2019 10:58 Comments || Top||

#2  Salute to those Talpiot guys and the MAFAT projects.
Posted by: Dron66046 || 12/11/2019 11:07 Comments || Top||


Southeast Asia
US #blacklists head of #Myanmar military, 3 generals
[TWITTER]

Posted by: Fred || 12/11/2019 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [142 views] Top|| File under: Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army

#1  Who is doing all this silly blacklisting, the HoR ?
Posted by: Dron66046 || 12/11/2019 6:01 Comments || Top||

#2  Nope. It's the DoD, and Pompeo. Travel bans, economic sanctions, whatever that means. Like they can't order from Amazon or ever see disneyland ?

I wonder what faux humanist concern for muslims has gotten into them all of a sudden.
Posted by: Dron66046 || 12/11/2019 6:07 Comments || Top||

#3  Given all the evidence uncovered in the Hillary-Obama coup, why are more countries playing this game against miscreants here? Other than they themselves support the coup.
Posted by: Procopius2k || 12/11/2019 7:40 Comments || Top||

#4  Somebody has to deal with those damn dirty Rohingyas. If not Myanmar who, if not now when?
Posted by: jpal || 12/11/2019 15:33 Comments || Top||


Syria-Lebanon-Iran
Deliberate demographic change, theft, and seizure of Afrini properties by Turkey and affiliated groups
[NPASYRIA] Since its control over the Syrian-Kurdish region of Afrin in March of last year, The Sick Man of Europe Turkey
...the only place on the face of the earth that misses the Ottoman Empire...
has followed the policy of demographic change, which is manifested in the recruitment of residents of other Syrian regions and settling them in the homes of the local people of Afrin, and the policy of forced displacement against the local people, in addition to changing the names of the streets, squares, villages, shops, markets and schools, and imposing the Ottoman Turkish language curricula in the region.
After displacing about 350 thousand people from Afrin, Turkey intends to bring the people of Eastern Ghouta (eastern Damascus), Idlib, and other areas of Syria to settle in the homes of the displaced people of Afrin, in conjunction with the forced displacement of the indigenous people of the region, to carry out kidnappings and threatening them with death and demanding a ransom, in addition to the distribution of local people's properties among them.

Turkey is trying, through the approach of demographic change, to implement the Ottoman Turkish on the region, to convert it from Kurdish and Arabic into Ottoman Turkish.

"North Press" obtained pictures from inside Afrin region, documenting the demographic change operations in the region, where the names of schools were replaced into the Ottoman Turkish language, in addition to raising the Ottoman Turkish flags on all the buildings and villages in the region.

On the background of the seizure and sharing of the properties of the people of Afrin, the Ottoman Turkish-backed armed opposition groups have written their names on the shops and homes of the local people.

In this regard, "North Press" has obtained pictures from the region documenting the registration of those gangs of their names on the walls of the shops and houses, in order to share these properties among them.

The obtained Pictures show the names of these bully boy groups (Failaq al-Sham, al-Faruq Brigade, Jaish al-Failaq, Nour al-Din al-Zenki Movement, al-Ghab Sector), the names appear on the pictures written on the walls of the houses and properties of the displaced people of Afrin.

After the Ottoman Turkish military and its armed opposition groups took control over Afrin, festivities erupted between those militias because of their dispute over the sharing of the seized properties of the local civilians, where disputes and crashes caused the death and injury of dozens of those bully boys.

Posted by: Fred || 12/11/2019 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [205 views] Top|| File under: Sublime Porte


Saudi Arabia’s FM: Important Lebanon finds way forward for stability
[ENGLISH.ALARABIYA.NET] Saudi Arabia’s foreign minister said stability in Lebanon, which has been rocked by more than a month of protests that forced the prime minister to resign, was “very, very important” to the kingdom.

Prince Faisal bin Farhan al-Saud said he would not “pre-judge” a conference planned this week in Paris to support Lebanon, which is facing its worst economic crisis since the 1975-90 civil war. “I’ll wait for the results of the conference.”

The Lebanese people and the political system need to find a way forward that guarantees its stability and sovereignty, he told a news conference - following the conclusion of the GCC 40th Summit held in Riyadh - in response to a question regarding aid to Lebanon.
Posted by: Fred || 12/11/2019 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [107 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Saudi Arabia


Home Front: Culture Wars
Facebook tells Attorney General Bill Barr that they will NOT allow US authorities access to encrypted messages on Whatsapp, Facebook Messenger and Instagram Direct
Posted by: Skidmark || 12/11/2019 11:51 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [331 views] Top|| File under:

#1  But what if they get one of those wonderful FISA warrants?
Posted by: gorb || 12/11/2019 12:47 Comments || Top||

#2  I bet they would if Adam “the liar” Schiff asked them to. In a heartbeat!
Posted by: CrazyFool || 12/11/2019 13:50 Comments || Top||

#3 
Posted by: Skidmark || 12/11/2019 13:51 Comments || Top||

#4  I'm sure that the NSA already has access to what it wants to know.
Posted by: Alaska Paul || 12/11/2019 17:10 Comments || Top||

#5  NSA may but probably not Barr or Trump...
Posted by: Glenmore || 12/11/2019 20:48 Comments || Top||


Trump expected to issue executive order against antisemitism on campus
Worst.Hitler.Ever.
[JPost] US President Donald Trump is expected to issue an executive order on Wednesday invoking Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 to fight antisemitic rhetoric on college campuses.

The new executive order would also label Judaism as a nationality in addition to a religion, so it would fall into the category of Title VI.
Hopefully to be followed by executive orders targeting anti-white & anti-male activities.
Posted by: g(r)omgoru || 12/11/2019 02:54 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [209 views] Top|| File under:


#2  Worst Hitler ever.
Posted by: Procopius2k || 12/11/2019 7:45 Comments || Top||

#3  Worst Hitler ever.

Yeah. Pretty disappointing. I'm hoping he will redeem himself by invading the Sudentenland or something.
Posted by: SteveS || 12/11/2019 12:13 Comments || Top||

#4  Trump's antisemitism executive order sets up a First Amendment battle

with free speech advocates, who argue that denying Israel’s right to exist is protected under the First Amendment.
Posted by: g(r)omgoru || 12/11/2019 12:42 Comments || Top||

#5  First Amendment, eh? This could be entertaining if it leads to invalidating all those stupid hate speech laws and policies. There is a whole *bleep*load of people who could sue to get their jobs back for what the hippies used to call "speaking Truth to Power".
Posted by: SteveS || 12/11/2019 14:41 Comments || Top||



Who's in the News
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3Sublime Porte
2Arab Spring
2Govt of Saudi Arabia
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1Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army
1Narcos
1Commies
1Govt of Iraq
1Govt of Sudan

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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.
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Two weeks of WOT
Wed 2019-12-11
  Iraqi protesters defiantly turn out in the capital Baghdad
Tue 2019-12-10
  Jersey City shooting - possibly 6 dead at JC Kosher grocery
Mon 2019-12-09
  Al-Shabaab Militants Kill 8 On Bus In Northern Kenya
Sun 2019-12-08
  At least 10 killed in Kenya bus attack claimed by al-Shabab
Sat 2019-12-07
  Baghdad operations commander orders the Iraqi army to move in Sinak and Khilani to protect the protesters
Fri 2019-12-06
  Naval Air Station Pensacola shooter who killed 3 was Saudi aviation student
Thu 2019-12-05
  Pelosi Asks House Judiciary Committee to Proceed with Articles of Impeachment
Wed 2019-12-04
  Anti-government protesters have set fire to the Iranian consulate in Najaf for the third time in a week
Tue 2019-12-03
  Burkina Faso: 14 people killed in gun attack at church during Sunday mass
Mon 2019-12-02
  40 to 100 Iranian protesters executed in a marsh.
Sun 2019-12-01
  At least 14 killed in bloody gunfight in northern Mexico
Sat 2019-11-30
  Thousands of Iraqi protesters are celebrating in Baghdad after Prime Minister Adil Abdel Mahdi pledges to resign
Fri 2019-11-29
  Iraqi Prime Minister Adil Abdul Mahdi says he will resign
Thu 2019-11-28
  Happy Thanksgiving!
Wed 2019-11-27
  Armed Iraqi protesters attempt to attack police forces in Baghdad

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