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France recognizes rebel coalition as legitimate rulers of Syria
Today's Headlines
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Page 6: Politix
4 23:26 JosephMendiola [10801] 
11 19:25 JosephMendiola [10799] 
15 21:29 tu3031 [10797] 
7 14:50 Grunter [10794] 
7 21:33 CrazyFool [10796] 
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Page 4: Opinion
23 23:05 JosephMendiola [10798]
16 20:53 badanov [10795]
-Lurid Crime Tales-
4-Star U.S. General Demoted over 5-Star Hotel Spending
[An Nahar] A four-star general who headed U.S. Africa Command has been demoted amid charges he spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on pricey travel, Pentagon officials said Tuesday.
Are we seeing a pattern of crap-splattered generals? Or should we wait for Number Three?
Defense Secretary 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....
demoted General William "Kip" Ward, who was asked to reimburse $82,000 for having inappropriately used Pentagon travel funds, a senior defense official said.

The four-star general "will retire at the rank of lieutenant general," a three-star post, a second senior defense official said.

The travel mishaps included bringing Ward's wife on extended business trips, according to a Defense Department Inspector General's report released in June.

One in Bermuda involved a suite for $747 a night at the Fairmont Hamilton Princess. And his wife also allegedly made unauthorized use of armored vehicles.

Ward, the first AFRICOM commander from 2007-2011 based in Stuttgart, has denied the allegations.
No, no! Certainly not!
He currently serves as a special assistant to the U.S. Army's vice chief of staff.

The inspector general's report found that Ward took an 11-day trip to Washington and Atlanta with his military entourage that cost $129,000 and of which only three days were for official business. The primary purpose of the trip was personal.

Ward's wife traveled with the general on military aircraft during 52 of 79 trips reviewed by Sherlocks, according to the report, which also said that Ward extended his trips seven times for personal reasons in which he was reimbursed for travel expenses.
Posted by: Fred || 11/14/2012 11:43 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [10797 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Obama doing Erdogan?
Posted by: g(r)omgoru || 11/14/2012 12:34 Comments || Top||

#2  The military seems to be under purge in the leadership positions. Prior to the election there were about a half dozen high ranking retired military officials who supported Obama. There were something like more than 500 who supported Romney. Is this purging a response to potential threats to the Obama administration?
Posted by: JohnQC || 11/14/2012 12:37 Comments || Top||

#3  It's not the GOs he should be worried about but the middle grades officer and NCO. Then again he's locked into that pseudo history thingy that thinks America is not special and just do what the Euros and other have done in the past and present.
Posted by: Procopius2k || 11/14/2012 12:44 Comments || Top||

#4  Is this purging a response to potential threats to the Obama administration?

Or a preparation for using the military against "bitter clingers".
Posted by: g(r)omgoru || 11/14/2012 12:45 Comments || Top||

#5  Obama does not want a civil war. The trouble with civil wars is that no one knows where they will end up. Look at the trouble Syria is having with a civil war, it looks rather tame compared to what would be likely to happen here. There is no guarantee the military, police, or some of the people in the Federal agencies would side team Obama. Many people still believe in their oath to the Constitution.
Posted by: JohnQC || 11/14/2012 12:57 Comments || Top||

#6  would side with team Obama
Posted by: JohnQC || 11/14/2012 12:58 Comments || Top||

#7  There is no guarantee the military, police, or some of the people in the Federal agencies would side team Obama.

But they're union members, he'll think -- except for the military, and the enlisted men ought to be, so he'll assume they'll think the same way -- so of course they'll be on his side... that's why unions have enforcers, right?
Posted by: trailing wife || 11/14/2012 13:09 Comments || Top||

#8  Remember the surge without the Anbar Awakening wasn't necessarily going to succeed. Look at Afghanistan when the population doesn't have a similar commitment. If you can't win in those scenarios, what makes them think they'd succeed here against a population with a lot of professionally trained soldiers now civilians [ever wonder why DHS tried to classify veterans as threats]. The police in Iraq and Afghanistan are marginal because they have to go home at night and to families where they can be picked off individually.
Posted by: Procopius2k || 11/14/2012 13:48 Comments || Top||

#9  It seems fairly Obvious, get the whites OUT and the Blacks IN.
Posted by: Redneck Jim || 11/14/2012 13:51 Comments || Top||

#10  1) GEN (now LtGen) Ward is Black.

2) This is an old story. He was removed from his command well over a year ago and the investigation report has been circulating for some time.
Posted by: lotp || 11/14/2012 16:02 Comments || Top||

#11  And his wife also allegedly made unauthorized use of armored vehicles.

That can't be all wrong, can it?
Posted by: Halliburton - Mysterious Conspiracy Division || 11/14/2012 18:09 Comments || Top||

#12  As per #11, I'm dying to know how a Top Egg's better half does this.
Posted by: JosephMendiola || 11/14/2012 19:28 Comments || Top||

#13  I suppose your only supposed to take your mistress to 5-star hotels - Wives get the old 3-star treatment.
Posted by: CrazyFool || 11/14/2012 19:57 Comments || Top||

#14  Nothing surprising. Whenever tyrants seize power, they purge the military - especially of competent, popular generals and colonels.

I expect to see a few more 'accidental' deaths and suicides.

Posted by: Orion || 11/14/2012 20:17 Comments || Top||

#15  And his wife also allegedly made unauthorized use of armored vehicles.

I too am intrigued...
Posted by: tu3031 || 11/14/2012 21:29 Comments || Top||

Home Front: Politix
Obama says tax hike will have to come first in "fiscal cliff" deal
President Barack Obama said on Wednesday that Republicans would have to agree to raise taxes on the wealthy as the first step in a budget deal that would prevent a dysfunctional Washington from pushing the economy into recession.

In his first news conference since winning re-election last week, Obama said he would be open to considering Republican priorities like entitlement reform and a tax-code overhaul as part of a broad-based deal to get the nation's finances on a sustainable course.

But Obama said Republicans in Congress would first have to agree to his top priority in the complex negotiations aimed at preventing a $600 billion combination of tax increases and spending cuts known as the "fiscal cliff" that could halt the weak economic recovery at the beginning of next year.

"What I'm not going to do is to extend further a tax cut for folks who don't need it," Obama said, shortly before meeting with a dozen business leaders who are pushing policymakers to reach a deal.

Obama's remarks, and unyielding comments from Republican leaders earlier this week, begin a long and possibly tense period of bargaining and brinkmanship that could leave a cloud of uncertainty over the economy leading up to the Christmas holidays and beyond.

Both Republicans and Democrats want to keep low income tax rates in place for middle-income and low-income households, but Democrats say the wealthiest 2 percent should have to pay the higher rates that were in place in the 1990s.

Obama made increased taxes on the wealthy a centerpiece of his re-election campaign, and polls show public opinion is on his side. Obama is reaching beyond Washington to ramp up pressure on Republicans and has already met with labor and liberal groups to build support for his approach.

Several of the chief executives due to meet Obama on Wednesday, including General Electric Co.'s Jeff Immelt, Aetna Inc.'s Mark Bertolini, Honeywell International Inc.'s David Cote and Dow Chemical Co.'s Andrew Liveris, back an approach roughly in line with Obama's position.

Many other business leaders do not share that view. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce released a letter, signed by more than 200 business groups, calling on Obama to find budget savings by scaling back benefits rather than raising taxes.
Posted by: tipper || 11/14/2012 17:27 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [10801 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Several of the chief executives due to meet Obama on Wednesday, including General Electric Co.'s Jeff Immelt, Aetna Inc.'s Mark Bertolini, Honeywell International Inc.'s David Cote and Dow Chemical Co.'s Andrew Liveris, back an approach roughly in line with Obama's position.

Jeff Immelt backs the Champ? What a surprise!
Posted by: Besoeker on the road again || 11/14/2012 20:24 Comments || Top||

#2  And Boehner will give it to him.
Posted by: Iblis || 11/14/2012 20:32 Comments || Top||

#3  And Boehner will give it to him.

Probably with a promise from Obama of some future spending cut. And he'll fall for it - Republicans always do....
Posted by: CrazyFool || 11/14/2012 20:37 Comments || Top||

#4  Tax hikes widout spending cutbacks is all but meaningless - all thats going to happen is that the Govtcritters are going to go on "Spend Spend Spending" pork binges.
Posted by: JosephMendiola || 11/14/2012 23:26 Comments || Top||

White House 'secede' petitions reach 675,000 signatures, 50-state participation
[Daily Caller]
Posted by: Fred || 11/14/2012 14:15 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [10799 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Don't worry liberals, you will get your own reservation, AKA the District of Columbia and daily rations. How is that for turning the tables.
Posted by: Voldemort Grereth1352 || 11/14/2012 14:31 Comments || Top||

#2  All of the secede folks should move to Texas. Together they might have enough numbers for it to mean something.
Posted by: rjschwarz || 11/14/2012 14:39 Comments || Top||

#3  Or Hawaii which already has a small secede group.
Posted by: rjschwarz || 11/14/2012 14:40 Comments || Top||

#4  "A backlash Monday night saw requests filed with the White House to strip citizenship rights from Americans who signed petitions to help states secede."

--even better! Free healthcare and I can still vote in U.S. Elections! (sarc/off)
Posted by: Broadhead6 || 11/14/2012 14:40 Comments || Top||

#5  Seems like we have become tribalized already thanks to the ONE and the donk party pushing division, strife, and class warfare. Secession on the part of the States would just formalize all this.
Posted by: JohnQC || 11/14/2012 14:56 Comments || Top||

#6  Even though these are just citizen petitions to secede, isn't a call from all 50 states for secession a rebuke of the fedgov?
Posted by: Lowspark || 11/14/2012 15:26 Comments || Top||

#7  "A backlash Monday night saw requests filed with the White House to strip citizenship rights from Americans who signed petitions to help states secede."

By people who can't read the Constitution [or care - so throw in SCOTUS on that too].

1st Amendment
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
Posted by: Procopius2k || 11/14/2012 15:39 Comments || Top||

#8  The first amendment has suffered of late.
Posted by: JohnQC || 11/14/2012 16:36 Comments || Top||

#9  I thought there were 57 states (sarc).
Posted by: JohnQC || 11/14/2012 17:50 Comments || Top||

#10  "57 States" > FYI #9, I'd asked a few associates during dinner time at McDonald's iff anyone on Guam had called or started a similar petition of secession to send to the Bammer WH - so far nobody knew iff one was begun, or by whom.
Posted by: JosephMendiola || 11/14/2012 19:14 Comments || Top||

#11  IMO it would take a "perfect storm" of so-called "fiscal cliffs", protractive bad economy + unemployment, ethnic, + major foreign policy failures or military defeats [e.g. Rising Iran + Rising China] for any secession movement to become empowered.


Posted by: JosephMendiola || 11/14/2012 19:25 Comments || Top||

Panetta voices ‘confidence’ in US commander Allen
PERTH, Australia: United States Defense Secretary Leon Panetta Wednesday backed the top US commander in Afghanistan, saying he had his “continued confidence.”

General John Allen was placed under investigation after FBI agents probing e-mail threats sent by former CIA director David Petraeus’ mistress stumbled upon messages he had sent to another woman at the center of the scandal.

“No one should leap to any conclusions,” Panetta told reporters in Perth, where he and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton had held talks with their Australian counterparts. “General Allen is doing an excellent job at ISAF. He certainly has my continued confidence to lead our forces and continue the fight.

“But his nomination has been put on hold as a prudent measure, until we determine what the facts are. And we will.”
Posted by: Steve White || 11/14/2012 11:17 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [10794 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Besides, we need something to hold over his head in case he's ever called to testify to Congress.
Posted by: Ebbang Uluque6305 || 11/14/2012 11:23 Comments || Top||

#2  They need to contain the Kelley angle. I'm betting there is a lot more salacious material in Tampa.
Posted by: Nimble Spemble || 11/14/2012 11:46 Comments || Top||

#3  What would George Patton say?
Posted by: g(r)omgoru || 11/14/2012 12:43 Comments || Top||

#4  His were ivory?
Posted by: Procopius2k || 11/14/2012 12:45 Comments || Top||

#5  "A man who won't ..." (possibly I'm confusing Patton with another cavalry general.
Posted by: g(r)omgoru || 11/14/2012 12:47 Comments || Top||

#6  Who cares what Panetta says. Confidence in Panetta is not very high.
Posted by: JohnQC || 11/14/2012 13:01 Comments || Top||

#7  When they make a statement in Perth, they've run as far from the story as it's possible to run!
(Sorry Phil, but it's true!)
Posted by: Grunter || 11/14/2012 14:50 Comments || Top||

Petraeus agrees to testify on Libya before congressional committees
Former CIA Director David Petraeus has agreed to testify about the Libya terror attack before the House and Senate intelligence committees, Fox News has learned.

Petraeus had originally been scheduled to testify this Thursday on the burgeoning controversy over the deadly Sept. 11 attack. That appearance was scuttled, though, after the director abruptly resigned over an extramarital affair.

The resignation has since expanded into a sprawling scandal that now includes allegations that Gen. John Allen, the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan, exchanged "inappropriate" and sexually charged emails with Jill Kelley, a Florida socialite linked to the Petraeus case. The rapid developments in the case have all but obscured what until last week was an intense debate on Capitol Hill and beyond over the Benghazi terror attack.

After Petraeus' resignation, lawmakers complained that the scandal was no reason they shouldn't hear from the man at the helm of the CIA when CIA operatives came under attack alongside State Department employees in Benghazi last month.

The logistics of Petraeus' appearance are still being worked out. But a source close to Petraeus said the former four-star general has contacted the CIA, as well as committees in both the House and Senate, to offer his testimony as the former CIA director.

Fox News has learned he is expected to speak off-site to the Senate Intelligence Committee on Friday about his Libya report.
The House side is still being worked out.

Posted by: tipper || 11/14/2012 10:43 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [10796 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Harry Reid has already opposed a joint committee to investigate Benghazi.

Senate Intelligence Committee Members (Meet this Friday offsite, Petraeus will testify (maybe))

Dianne Feinstein, D, Chair
John D. Rockefeller, D
Ron Wyden, D
Barbara Mikulski, D
Bill Nelso, D
Kent Conrad, D
Mark Udall, D
Mark Warner, D
Saxby Chambliss, R
Olympia Snowe, R
Richard Burr, R
James Risch, R
Daniel Coats, R
Roy Blunt, R
Marcio Rubio, R
Posted by: JohnQC || 11/14/2012 12:52 Comments || Top||

#2  Probably NOT available on C-span!
Posted by: Skidmark || 11/14/2012 15:05 Comments || Top||

#3  Is the point of the whole exercise not to remove Petraeus, which could have been done at any time, but to destroy him? To ensure that he was so tainted that nothing he said about events in the past or his opinions about the future would be given any public weight? Perhaps there are more parallels to the DSK affair and Petraeus scandal than we think. In both cases prominent men were removed from the political chessboard by the titillating use of surveillance information.
Posted by: Deacon Blues || 11/14/2012 15:49 Comments || Top||

#4  Deacon Blues you are right on the mark.

A Russian business associate of mine explains the actions as another goal as well: "When you crush someone who is in your administration you do it as a warning to every political enemy you got. You're saying, 'See how I treat my friends and be worried.' Its a teachable moment Chicago style."

Posted by: Plinth of Plush || 11/14/2012 17:31 Comments || Top||

#5  HUmmmm.... dirt on everyone, yeah, it kinda makes sense DeaconMan.
Posted by: Shipman || 11/14/2012 17:48 Comments || Top||

#6  Wonder how much different it'll be from his September 13th remarks?
Posted by: Pappy || 11/14/2012 21:09 Comments || Top||

#7  I can't help but wonder if the Administration tried to hold this over him to keep his silence over Libya and he simply said 'Ok - I f-ked up. But I'm not going to complicate it by committing treason.' and went public by resigning. That was his 'F-k you SIR!'.

If so - lets hope he lives to testify.
Posted by: CrazyFool || 11/14/2012 21:33 Comments || Top||

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Two weeks of WOT
Wed 2012-11-14
  France recognizes rebel coalition as legitimate rulers of Syria
Tue 2012-11-13
  Jamaat, Shibir go berserk in Bangla
Mon 2012-11-12
  Govt. Soldiers shoot it out in Mogadishu
Sun 2012-11-11
  IDF Changes Rules of Engagement Along Syrian Border
Sat 2012-11-10
  Mexican police charged over US embassy staff shooting
Fri 2012-11-09
  David Petraeus resigns from CIA
Thu 2012-11-08
  Syria raids Hamas offices months after group's leaders leave
Wed 2012-11-07
  Bombings, Clashes Kill 131 in Syria as Gunmen Assassinate Parliament Speaker's Brother
Tue 2012-11-06
  Suicide bomber kills at least 27 by army base near Baghdad
Mon 2012-11-05
  Grenade attack on Kenya church kills 1, wounds 14
Sun 2012-11-04
  Two Suicide Bombers Attack Restaurant in Somali Capital
Sat 2012-11-03
  30 people shot dead in Nigeria, rights group says
Fri 2012-11-02
  US withdraws its support for Syrian National Council
Thu 2012-11-01
  Armed Islamists on Tunis streets after clashes
Wed 2012-10-31
  18 militants killed in Khyber, Orakzai

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