Keeping the blogosphere posted on the goings on of the world of submarines since late 2004... and mocking and belittling general foolishness wherever it may be found. Idaho's first and foremost submarine blog. (If you don't like something on this blog, please E-mail me; don't call me at home.)

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Should We Attack Syria?

With an American submarine reported to be among the assets on standby for a possible attack on Syria, and the President announcing that he'll ask Congress for authorization for such an attack, I figure we should discuss how Congress should vote.

Normally, I would be in favor of any excuse to reduce the military capabilities of a Ba'athist dictatorship, but I've got some serious concerns about this one. For one thing, we'd be intervening in a civil war in which the side we'd be aiding in our attacks aren't necessarily people we want to be helping. Also part of the discussion is whether the U.S. even wants to be the "world's policeman" any more, like we were in the '90s. I'm leaning towards "no" on that last question.

There's no doubt that using chemical weapons against civilians is a dick move, and while I wouldn't put it past the al Qaeda-linked portion of the Syrian insurgency to use chemical weapons against civilians in areas under their control in an attempt to get a Western military response against the regime, I think there's a pretty good chance the Syrian government launched this most recent attack. So, while it's definitely not nice to gas people, is it that much of a worse action than blowing them up with high explosives that it defines a "red line" requiring American intervention? For this mindset, I blame the previous Administration.

In coming up with a justification for attacking Iraq, the Bush Administration settled on the possession of "weapons of mass destruction" as a causus belli. I always thought they should go with either 1) the Iraqis are continually shooting at our planes enforcing the UN-authorized "no-fly" zone in southern Iraq, or 2) we got attacked on 9/11, and therefore we, as a sovereign country and the baddest-ass dude on the planet, claim the right to overthrow the governments of 1-3 countries we don't like whenever we get attacked, and if the rest of the world doesn't like it, they can suck it. [Note: (1) would probably be the easiest to justify.] I'm guessing they focus-grouped the potential reasons and came up with WMDs as the one that polled best, and, let's face it, it was a "slam dunk" that Iraq had chemical weapons. (The last line was clearly writ ironical, as subsequent history has shown, but at the time everyone "knew" the Iraqis still had chemicals and nerve agents -- they had used chemical weapons in the '80s against Iran and still had them in 1991, based on the evidence we found when we went into southern Iraq in the First Gulf War. It took us some time after the war to get our intelligence assets into place, but we figured that we had confirmation in 1995 from the Kamel defection. Since we didn't see any indication that any weapons were being destroyed after 1995, when we had assets in place, and since we didn't believe Kamel's public statements that everything had been destroyed before that, we were pretty sure they still had WMDs.)

If we do attack with a previously-stated restriction that there won't be "boots on the ground", would this be enough to "deter" other states, or even Syria, from continuing to use chemical weapons? What if a tyrant is willing to trade having $100 million worth of crappy Russian weapons and a few empty buildings destroyed in exchange for us using $250 million worth of Tomahawks, especially if the tyrant gets the support of the "America is always wrong" crowd to boot? Suppose we were to say "You Arabs don't like chemical weapons being used in your part of the world? Let the Arab League handle it."? While I'm adamantly opposed to the isolationist/Ronulan view that we need to bring all our troops home, why can't we just let two groups who both hate us continue to kill each other while we stand aside?

For the upcoming Congressional debate, there is one thing of which I'm sure -- I really want the debate to be over "should the U.S. intervene in Syria and, in general, be the world's policeman" and nothing else. I really hope the House doesn't attach some dumb-ass "repeal Obamacare" amendment that would turn the debate into a cheap political stunt, but I'm not very hopeful on that score. I want to see Congress do their job and debate this important issue. And I kind of hope they reach a consensus that it's not our job to intervene unilaterally. (Note that if Turkey, a NATO ally, goes to NATO with a request to intervene since they fear the Syrian chemical weapons will be used against them, we should eagerly join in a NATO effort. Since, as I mentioned above, I almost always support an opportunity to blow up Ba'athist air defense and command-and-control infrastructure.)

[Also, kind of off-topic, I've been really disappointed in the "amateur hour" nature of the Administration's response to the whole thing. I don't think the new SecState is really up to the job.]

What do you think? Should we attack Syria?

132 Comments:

Anonymous NHSparky said...

In a word, no. Bush had 10 times more reason to go up against Iraq, and we see how well that turned out. In Syria, we'd be supporting someone who hates us, regardless of which side we supported.

Not worth one drop of American blood.

8/31/2013 4:53 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It takes a serious dose of BDS ("Bush Derangement Syndrome") to somehow lay the blame at President Bush's feet for Obama's foot-in-mouth syndrome that got us to where we're at.

Short answer: there is no compelling national security need, and as reinforced by the lack of an international coalition, for for the U.S. to attack Iraq.

I think the only reason President Obama is asking Congress for authorization is because he sensed more than a little bit of risk to his job security in committing an act of war without Congressional authorization.

Would only add that gas weapons are not the weapon of choice by even the most deranged militarists, as they are so ineffective. They are hardly a "WMD."

8/31/2013 5:11 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

No. And the President has no authority to do so without authorization from Congress.

8/31/2013 5:13 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

P.S. As regards amateur hour at the Executive Branch: putting Susan "it's the video" Rice in the role of National Security Advisor...??? Now *that* is a "dick move"...and one that completely destroys Obama's credibility on the international affairs front (not that the Community-Organizer-In-Chief ever had any).

8/31/2013 5:15 PM

 
Anonymous NHSparky said...

Anon @ 5:11--I think Bush was in fact right to take on Saddam, but I think where the administration failed miserably is 1--not anticipating the filling in of the vacuum they created, 2--not letting former Baathists take positions in the new government, 3--not pursuing the WMD issue to completion.

We're pretty sure that chemical agents are being used, but by whom? And frankly, at the risk of sounding like a callous sumbitch, better to let those weapons be used on someone else than on us. We go in all half-cocked, and BOTH sides are gonna be pissed at America and our interests are going to be put at risk either here or abroad.

YMMV.

8/31/2013 5:52 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

While I don't share BH's opinion of Secretary of State Kerry's competency, his concerns relating to the ability of Congress to productively debate this issue are spot on.
There are far too many sparkle ponies with a taste for sound bites and the Country be damned to make any such debate meaningful or worthwhile.

8/31/2013 5:59 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The only reason to attack, politically speaking, is to metaphorically give Assad a spanking for using chemical weapons. As stated by bubblehead, neither side is really the 'good guys' for us so we really don't benefit from helping anyone win.

Like any spoiled brat, I don't think it'll change his behavior.

But any opportunity to kill some sand niggers gets my vote.

8/31/2013 6:02 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"... the ability of Congress to productively debate this issue are spot on.
There are far too many sparkle ponies with a taste for sound bites and the Country be damned to make any such debate meaningful or worthwhile."

Yeah..except for that Constitution thing we're all sworn to protect and defend, eh?

Just go ahead and turn in your collar devices if you think Obama can commit an act of war without Congressional approval.

8/31/2013 6:17 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh...and on the "limited strike" theory: if Iran strikes Israel subsequent to our attacking Syria, how "limited" do you think that will turn out?

8/31/2013 6:19 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Just go ahead and turn in your collar devices if you think Obama can commit an act of war without Congressional approval."

Congress passed the war powers act which allows the President to conduct a military operation for up to 60 days without consulting Congress. I believe the intent of that law was to allow him sufficient flexibility in an emergency, but it has been used time and again to meddle in places we shouldn't be meddling in non-emergency situations. It is well within the President's power to strike Syria.

8/31/2013 6:50 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is one of those difficult situations.I would NEVER want our men and women to be in harms way and go to a needless war. At the same time, if I were a person over there, seeing massacred families left and right, I'd be screaming for someone - ANYONE to save me.
That said, I don't think there is a "truce" to be had here that America can benefit from.

8/31/2013 7:35 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Congress passed the war powers act which allows the President to conduct a military operation for up to 60 days without consulting Congress." Actually the War Powers Resolution requires the President to notify Congress within 48 hours of committing armed forces to military action and forbids armed forces from remaining for more than 60 days, with a further 30 day withdrawal period, without an authorization of the use of military force or a declaration of war. The problem here is that Obama is talking about lobbing Cruise missiles from off shore which IS an act of war against a sovereign power and is technically not committing forces to the country. BTW All Presidents since 1973 when the resolution passed have considered it as unconstitutional.

8/31/2013 7:49 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Here's the truly tough question that Bubblehead didn't come right out and ask: given that an order attack on Syria would constitute an act of war on a sovereign nation without Congressional approval...what would you do if you received the order in that situation?

There is such a thing as an illegal order...and we all know the right thing to do. Real-world, though, I wonder how many truly would.

8/31/2013 8:17 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Coin flip...?

"I, (NAME), do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; and that I will obey the orders of the President of the United States and the orders of the officers appointed over me, according to regulations and the Uniform Code of Military Justice. So help me God."

(Whoops -- there's that God thing again. Another tough day to be an atheist...)

8/31/2013 8:23 PM

 
Blogger Buck said...

No attack. If we use 'limited strikes' we'll do... nothing. Is there someone who really thinks we can topple the Assad government with TLAMs alone? Let's assume we can take out any target we want (as if there weren't innocent civilians in those targets). What combination of targets will kill Assad, his family, his advisers and his Ba'athist successors?

8/31/2013 8:24 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Actually the War Powers Resolution requires the President to notify Congress within 48 hours of committing armed forces to military action and forbids armed forces from remaining for more than 60 days, with a further 30 day withdrawal period, without an authorization of the use of military force or a declaration of war. Splitting hairs. Still gives the President the authority to take military action unilaterally against a foreign nation.

BTW All Presidents since 1973 when the resolution passed have considered it as unconstitutional. Doesn't matter what they think about its constitutionality. It only matters what SCOTUS thinks, which is the only body who gets to call something unconstitutional with any significant meaning via judicial review.

And despite their opinions, with rare exception they've all used the powers afforded by the war powers act. So there's that.

given that an order attack on Syria would constitute an act of war on a sovereign nation without Congressional approval...what would you do if you received the order in that situation? The same thing if I got the order to invade Iraq in 2002 or 1991. The same thing if I had to lead a military action into Somalia or Afghanistan. The same thing if I had to launch TLAMs into Libya: Carry out the lawful order of the Commander in Chief.

8/31/2013 8:24 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

No attack. If we use 'limited strikes' we'll do... nothing.

We'd kill a bunch of people who would happily rape your wife in front of you, then torture and behead you on youtube if given the chance. Always a good thing when we can rid this earth of those pieces of shit.

8/31/2013 8:28 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

NO!

At least Bush worked the phones, and we attacked with a "coalition of the willing"... although much of that was moral support rather then boots on ground.

In this case, we would be going it alone. And tweaking Russia, which I really don't think we should be doing.

But hey, lets drop another $200m worth of TLAMs overnight, like we did in Libya. After all, it is just free money!

8/31/2013 8:38 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

anon at 8:17

Nothing tough about that question. As a sailor on a ship or soldier on the ground, when the CIC gives the order, we go.

All the happy nonsense about "unconstitutional orders" is for armchair lawyers and politicians to argue about.

No question about it. BTDT.

If you think differently, then you need to find a new line of work (assuming you are actually a bubblehead).

8/31/2013 8:43 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's a lot tougher day for you stupid fucks who still believe in Santa Claus errr I mean god.

8/31/2013 8:44 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

^^^You should know, as the rest of us do, that your knee-jerk use of the phrase "stupid fuck" necessarily means that this is your own personal self-talk. This is something you call yourself...that's why it comes up so easily for you.

Why do you think that about yourself? Daddy want a little girl instead?

8/31/2013 8:59 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"All the happy nonsense about "unconstitutional orders" is for armchair lawyers and politicians to argue about."

You mean, like Reid W. Kennedy...or the Army Court of Military Review...or J. Robert Elliott...?

"If you are asking why I did not stand up to them when I was given the orders, I will have to say that I was a 2nd Lieutenant getting orders from my commander and I followed them—foolishly, I guess."

8/31/2013 9:10 PM

 
Blogger SubIconoclast said...

Anon at 8:43PM: That logic is entirely appropriate for enlisted personnel. Commissioned officers, however, are responsible for evaluating both the ethical and legal basis of their orders before carrying them out - particularly when acting as the Commanding Officer of a unit employing weapons with a high chance of causing civilian casualties.

I'm not saying an order to strike Syria would necessarily be unethical or illegal, mind you - I'm just saying that officers cannot get a free pass on committing a war crime just because their chain of command ordered it. It's never as simple as "my boss said to do it so I'll do it, no questions asked."

Personally I am hopeful we find something more creative to deter any further use of chemical weapons (assuming that's our primary objective), because I don't think TLAM strikes alone are likely to accomplish that goal.

8/31/2013 9:16 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

ΔΔΔKnows what he's talking about. Class dismissed.

9/01/2013 12:21 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The President marched himself into a box canyon with his earlier "Red Line" comment on any Syrian chemical weapons use. He's found a way out: giving the decision to Congress.

With 90% of the American public and his principal military adviser, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs, opposed to US military intervention, Congress will disapprove by more than 2-1. And the President will have his Pontius Pilate exit--not my doing.

Unfortunately, he'll be left with major damage to his international credibility. Iran, China, and Russia will now judge him the same way Khrushchev judged a new President Kennedy: weak and unwilling to follow through.

I'm glad we're not going to intervene militarily for exactly the reasons the CJCS laid out in his letter back to Congressman Engel.

I regret a US President's credibility has been diminished. That opens the door to further pushing and shoving by the Iran's of the world.

The administration is about to take some well-deserved criticism for poor performance in its handling of this.

9/01/2013 5:26 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

From the War of Jenkin's Ear...to the War of Obama's Ego.

9/01/2013 6:19 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'd prefer we don't get involved. We can lob all the TLAMs we want, but we're fooling ourselves if we think that it won't be right back to the same old shit in 5 years. It's just not worth it to me. Does anybody here think that the Iraqi endeavor has gone how we'd like? We flew a shit-ton of missiles into Libya a few years back, it's still a shithole. Leave the Middle East alone, we have enough issues here at home to worry about. World Police is not a role we're suited for.

9/01/2013 7:07 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I like this blog but did you just blame Bush for this presidents incompetence? Stick to sub topics please.

9/01/2013 8:22 AM

 
Blogger Mike Mulligan said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

9/01/2013 8:57 AM

 
Blogger Mike Mulligan said...

Aug 26, 2013

You know, the only way to create deterrent for a future madman feeling his survival is at stake and using chemical weapons...you are going to have to annihilate the military and government of Syria...

So far it seems Obama only has the guts to just do enough to not rile the American public.

Right, they did a test of openly using chemical weapons just a few months ago...we turned our eyes from it even when Obama dared Syria not to cross the red line.

Our destruction of Syria has to be breathtaking in scope for the good of our collective future...

The government of Syria has to collapse within days and before a week is out...

And any two bit military has to know if you follow the orders of your tin pot leader...the military is first going to be held accountable and the military will become a thing of the past...

The deal is you hold the military accountable first...don’t listen to your political leaders and president if you want a standing military when the crisis is over! You’ll be lucky to be alive.

9/01/2013 1:20 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Obama has a way out of his "red line" by letting Congress make his decision for him. I am reluctant to admit that this is the correct decision given all the available information and resources available.

I have a question for some of you: If given an order by an admiral to shoot a TLAM at a Damascus suburb WHICH YOU KNOW TO BE A CIVILIAN NON-MILITARY area would you do it?

What if that same area was a German suburb? New York suburb, or even your home town? See the difference?

There comes a time when you must consult and discuss with other people....the president is correct in this.

9/01/2013 2:54 PM

 
Blogger Mike Mulligan said...


Come on, all you are is weapons technologist...basically you put the GPS information into the weapon and make sure the data is correct. That is all you are.
You have zero capability to know what is going on scene with the target.

If you don’t pull that trigger you are a saboteur or a traitor.

Of course it would never be an admiral...it would be a war command control room and thorough verification process making sure you got the right target.

9/01/2013 3:11 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It is even worse then that. You are not entering GPS coordinates for the strike, you are just programming the to hit the launch basket, which is hundreds of miles away from the final target. We shot a couple dozen TLAMs into Iraqi, and we didn't know the final destination.

TLAM is a pinpoint weapon. Even if you did know it was a "civilian suburb", how do you know the SINGLE ROOM that you are aiming to destroy isn't a valid target? You don't, because you don't have access to the intelligence that the NSC, CJCS, and President had when they approved the strike.

Refusing to conduct an authorized military strike because you don't think the President has the power to authorize military action is a far cry from refusing to attack a target because it is a war crime to do so. It is sophistry to try to argue one based upon the proven moral validity of the other.

9/01/2013 3:43 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Speaking of BS intel to further a political agenda, what's Ahmed Chalabi doing these days?
STSC

9/01/2013 3:50 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Weinberger doctrine:
1. The United States should not commit forces to combat unless the vital national interests of the United States or its allies are involved.

2. U.S. troops should only be committed wholeheartedly and with the clear intention of winning. Otherwise, troops should not be committed.

3. U.S. combat troops should be committed only with clearly defined political and military objectives and with the capacity to accomplish those objectives.

4. The relationship between the objectives and the size and composition of the forces committed should be continually reassessed and adjusted if necessary.

5. U.S. troops should not be committed to battle without a "reasonable assurance" of the support of U.S. public opinion and Congress.

6. The commitment of U.S. troops should be considered only as a last resort.

I will start with #1.... - what vital national interests are at stake in Syria? What arguments have been put forth outlining our national vital interests and how not acting will cause harm to these vital national interests??

There is a lot of problems with #2 through #6...but so far I have yet to hear a cogent argument for #1.

Anyone??

9/01/2013 4:08 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

While in the military, I shall obey the orders of the officers appointed over me. Now that I am out, I am free-thinking, and question the judgement of the officers appointed, with the same credentials of my daughter plus knife and fork school.

We need more free-thinkers, not military robots when dealing with issues like this.

9/01/2013 4:25 PM

 
Blogger Mike Mulligan said...

Once you grow up to become a man, you realize rules carries extremely little information and intelligence.

So the Weinberger doctrine allowed Bin Laden and al Qaeda to knock down two skyscrapers in NYC and crashed airplanes into the Pentagon?

The exhausted over two wars paradigm is a bit too much for me...

9/01/2013 4:38 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

An "authorized strike" in a case like Syria requires the advice and consent of Congress. There is no emergency, and it would be an act of war against a sovereign nation...i.e., above Obama's pay grade to "authorize"an attack on his own.

9/01/2013 5:11 PM

 
Blogger Mike Mulligan said...

Obama‘s got 90 days to do as he pleases without the consent of congress. That is plenty of time to destroy Syria’s military. Her just has to notify ccongress to get out of the way. You know that is what everyone wants.


Now the Saudis are in and the Arab league...that is the funding.
And the French can bring their French fries!

9/01/2013 5:59 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Everybody keeps forgetting the part of the WPR that only authorizes action in the event of "a national emergency created by attack upon the United States, its territories or possessions, or its armed forces." It's not a blank check for 60 days.

9/01/2013 6:11 PM

 
Blogger Mike Mulligan said...

He’s got the authority...it could end up in court with the definition of “hostilities”. Some say it only comes into play with boots on the ground.

So that will give Obama two or three years.

9/01/2013 6:47 PM

 
Blogger Harold said...

But what if he asks Congress, and Congress says no? And he orders the attack anyway? http://senseofevents.blogspot.com/2013/08/is-obama-setting-up-two-prong.html discusses this in greater detail.

But there is a name in place for the Syrian action:

"OPERATION ENDURING HESITATION"

9/01/2013 6:56 PM

 
Blogger Mike Mulligan said...

You mean that Christian Conservative mad dog Republicans extremist and teabagger groups...the guys who “hate the USA government” first gang.

I bet you Obama’s IRS didn’t give them the tax deduction write off yet...


9/01/2013 7:55 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

As long as it doesn't get in the way of ORSE preps.

9/01/2013 9:06 PM

 
Blogger KellyJ said...

Consider this not to implausible scenario:
We shoot some T-Hawks into a sovereign Nation with zero provocation and little International support. A Russian Commander tells his Syrian counterpart a Lat/Long or Range/Bearing. Syria dumps a few dozen C-802 anti-ship missiles down that bearing and ends up damaging/sinking a US DDG, then claim (justifiably IMHO) they were merely defending themselves from an aggressive foreign power who was sticking their nose into their internal affair.
What does Obama do then?

9/02/2013 12:27 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

No!

As said in several comments, there is no US National Interest involved.

There is a humanitarian interest in an arab country. The Arab League should play the enforcers and police their own members.

Should the Arab League fail to live up to their responsibilities, it should be thrown to the UN. UN should then take responsibility for setting guidelines and enforcing them. US forces should not participate.

If, in spite of all reasons not to, the US does get involved -

It should be with a goal to topple the regime, occupy the country, and establish a military council/government controlled by US. Occupying forces should plan on remaining for a long period (think 20-40 yrs).

Downside - "Crusaders" on the holy ground will increase anti-US animosity more than it already is. It is very likely that IRAN will increase hostilities, or at a minimum encourage/fund/supply attacks against Israel. This will result in WW III - but we all know that you get more mileage out of radioactive oil, so what could go wrong??

9/02/2013 6:40 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The US national interest involved, if there ever was one, is to maintain the gentleman's agreement to not use chemical warfare.

9/02/2013 10:11 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Should the Arab League fail to live up to their responsibilities, it should be thrown to the UN. UN should then take responsibility for setting guidelines and enforcing them. US forces should not participate.

You realize that the UN is comprised of its member nations, right? What you said is the equivalent of saying that if the U.S. gets involved, then Virginia should not participate.

9/02/2013 10:17 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"The US national interest involved, if there ever was one, is to maintain the gentleman's agreement to not use chemical warfare."

And attacking Syria with Tomahawk missiles stops that...how?

9/02/2013 10:59 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

...and helps...whom?

(Hint: rhymes with "Al Qaeda.")

9/02/2013 11:01 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Last but not least...how does the world parse the fact that the U.S. allows -- a unquestionably & guiltily does the other world governments -- about 100,000 Syrians be killed by their government in an on-going fashion, but they gets all self-righteous only when Syria acts against President Obama's so-called "Red Line?"

[Estimates of deaths in the Syrian civil war, per opposition activist groups, vary between 83,260 and 110,375. On 24 July 2013, the United Nations put out an estimate of over 100,000 that had died in the war.(Ref.)]

9/02/2013 11:07 AM

 
Blogger Mike Mulligan said...


“A Russian Commander tells his Syrian counterpart a Lat/Long or Range/Bearing. Syria dumps a few dozen C-802 anti-ship missiles down that bearing and ends up damaging/sinking a US DDG, then claim (justifiably IMHO) they were merely defending themselves from an aggressive foreign power who was sticking their nose into their internal affair.”

A US DDG deserves to get sunk if they let a Syrian ship get within the range of the missile. These guys (Syria) would be already destroyed.

Yea, what is in our national interest...it is like our national philosophy of” me first” and my only interest is my highest aspiration.

I wonder what Jesus would say, like solve all the senseless killing of Syrians and reconstituting the legitimate government of Syria.

So what is so wrong with a weak al al qaeda and warring factions running Syria rather than a strong centralized Assad...

Come on, there are no smart Russian commanders left in the Russian Navy...

9/02/2013 12:47 PM

 
Blogger Mike Mulligan said...

Secretary of State John Kerry told House Democrats during a Monday conference call that they face a "Munich moment" as they weigh whether to approve striking Syria to punish Syrian President Bashar Assad for using chemical weapons, two sources with knowledge of the call told NBC News.

The phrase is a reference to the 1938 Munich Pact that ceded control of part of Czechoslovakia to Nazi Germany -- a moment that history has harshly judged as an appeasement of Adolf Hitler that preceded World War II.

9/02/2013 3:21 PM

 
Blogger KellyJ said...

MM: A US DDG deserves to get sunk if they let a Syrian ship get within the range of the missile.

And just what will the USN do if a Syrian warship comes out to monitor them? Sink them without provocation?
Regardless, the Syrian Navy has a few old Petya IIs and some Osa boats. Not much of a concern in any case.

What I am considering isn't the ship based missiles, but the C802s that Syria has in shore batteries. Not to mention some allied batteries that are in Lebanon.

9/02/2013 4:34 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Kerry comparison only serves to (further) indict him for being ridiculous.

Mike: you are a very weird guy. The things that inspire you make the rest of us nauseated.

For one example, the call against Munich involved world war with national survival, blood, treasures and futures at stake across all of Europe.

Obama is talking about pin-prick Tomahawk strikes on a country that has attacked no one but their own people in a civil war.

You'd be hard pressed to come up with a more absurd comparison...but I'm sure the current Administration will manage to do so, somehow.

9/02/2013 5:06 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The only discernible objectives in a Tomahawk attack on Syria are to sooth Obama's ego while doing a "wag the dog" on the home front to distract the nation from his multiple incompetencies.

In other words: this whole Syria thing is bullshit.

Obama's oh-so-upset that 1% of the deaths in Syria have come from chemical attacks? Not buying it, folks. Neither should you.

IF...and that's a big 'if'...the attacks are about brushing Al Qaeda back from the plate in Syria, COME OUT AND SAY SO. That'd be a whole other batch of fish, and one that many could get behind. But this sort of objective appears to be nothing but wishful thinking at this point, and has NO stated support from the Administration.

9/02/2013 5:13 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The extreme left...and the extreme right...in agreement?

Dennis Kucinich (D-Ohio) -- said that should President Obama green-light an air strike in Syria, the U.S. military would “become Al Qaeda's air force.”

Rand Paul (D-Kentucky) -- “This is an important moment. You will be funding, today, the allies of al Qaeda,” Paul said during a hearing of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, nearly all of whom voted to send arms to Syrian rebels.

9/02/2013 5:34 PM

 
Blogger Harold said...

http://moonbattery.com/?p=35901

These pictures are telling. No way to tell if the persons hiding behind the signs are actually AD military, but I will note that I don't recall use of uniforms like this in any previous anti-war postings.

British newspapers are reporting that senior military officials told their CinC no, they weren't going to bomb. And thta's why it didn't happen this weekend. Read it earlier today, but didn't think of bookmarking. When I run across it again, I'll post a link.

9/02/2013 8:11 PM

 
Blogger Harold said...

http://directorblue.blogspot.com/2013/09/german-media-obama-reversed-course-on.html

German media, not Btitish. My bad.

9/02/2013 8:59 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...


Julius and Ethel Rosenberg were executed in 1953 for conspiracy to commit espionage during WW2, when they passed information about the atomic bomb to the Soviet Union.

Politicians have not declared another U.S. war since. Want to guess why? Who could be convicted and executed nowadays. If you guessed many politcians and lobbyists working for foreign governments, you would probably be correct.

These folks are secretive about the sources of their personal wealth. While many are cowards, they have also rigged the legal system to avoid capital punishment. Accordingly, we are not likely to commit an act of war with Syria.

Instead, Obama thinks he may accomplish his true objective (convincing symbolism) with a drone strike or two on a Syrian military officer with an impressive rank and little fame, and other strikes on serious-sounding Syrian military facilities. Putin, having convinced Assad to select the sacrifices has assured Obama it can proceed without significant retribution.

He will later claim the U.S. has become a paper tiger, and Russian navy presence was sufficient to deter significant missile strikes.

Juan Caruso











9/03/2013 12:12 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

As best as I can figure it out :
The principle at "stake" : No one should be able to use WMD without consequence. As it is an easy sliding slope from the use of WMD within your borders to lax control or smuggling and use of them against 3rd parties, the easy use of WMD endangers the US as well as others.
Hence we should punish the user pour encourage l'autres. Of course this "principle" may have some vaidity to it, but is rather undercut by the fact that Truman, Saddam and others were the more recent users of WMD who obviously suffered no US consequence.

The use of Tomahawks may not accomplish much (perhaps a few killed and a few million $ in munition expended), but will restrict the chance of entanglement. But its still begs the question : What do you hope to accomplish, do you risk looking not very powerful, and do you increase the chance of helping your enemeies such as Al-qaeda, iran etc.

9/03/2013 12:42 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

1. Anon @ 5:11 on gas weapons not being the weapon of choice as being ineffective and hardly a WMD.:

Saddam (Iran-Iraq war, Kurdish campaign) would beg to disagree. They definitely signal total war.


9/03/2013 12:53 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

@12:42 AM Anon:

Your best arguments -- and Obama's -- are clearly lame...and yet encouraging in the sense that we will in fact most likely stay out of the mess in Syria at the end of the day.

@12:53 AM Anon:

There's no questioning the severity of the effects of gas weapons on human being individually. But because of their limited dispersion and thus effectiveness, they don't really affect huge numbers of people such as nuclear weapons do. Case in point: Saddam lost the war he started with Iran. At best, the outcome was a stalemate, with much lost face and respectability in the process.

The Syrian civil war will likely end as most such civil wars do with tyrants, and with or without our (limited, undefined, undefinable, useless?) involvement.

I think Obama's 'principle' motivation is that he sees Syria as Libya II, wherein if we can't pick our allies, we'll at least pick our enemy and come out on the side of the undoubtedly eventual 'winners.' If that includes Al Qaeda, then in Obama's mind "so be it."

9/03/2013 6:50 AM

 
Blogger Rubber Ducky said...

Bunch of wusses and Republicans posting above. If the boss says go, go.

9/03/2013 8:24 AM

 
Blogger Mike Mulligan said...


Honestly, with Aegis cruisers , awac and satellites… there is not a problem.

If they fired on us and missed, every shore battery and ship of Syria would be dead within a few hours.

Didn’t somebody once sneeze near Iran in a past crisis…we then took out all their capital ships in about two seconds…

Doing nothing contain risk, as with making them pay for using WMD…

Not a ant moves in Syria without us knowing it…

Hey, we finally shut up them god dam Israelis(humor).


9/03/2013 8:32 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The "boss," of course, being the American people in the form of their duly elected representatives when it comes to declaring war on a nation that has not attacked us.

Unless, of course, you swore an Allegiance to a different Constitution than I did. You never know with Democrats and all.

9/03/2013 8:51 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

P.S. Smoke 'em if you got 'em. Until then...

9/03/2013 8:57 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

79 percent of Americans, including 90 percent of Republicans, said last week that they believed Obama should seek congressional approval for intervention, according to a NBC News poll.

At least we can take this as a good sign that nearly all Americans understand the real chain of command when it comes to starting a war.

...but it does sorta make you wonder just what kind of people those 10-20% are. Coke heads in Cocoa Beach?

9/03/2013 9:20 AM

 
Blogger Mike Mulligan said...

I don’t get it, we got record breaking piss poor public approval of congress?



9/03/2013 10:06 AM

 
Blogger Mike Mulligan said...

Boehner and me are one!

9/03/2013 10:12 AM

 
Blogger Vigilis said...

"Bunch of wusses and Republicans posting above." - Rubber Ducky

"You know spies... bunch of bitchy little girls." -Sam Axe

You been watching too much "Burn Notice" lately, RD? Produced right there with you in Florida.

Let me clarify your thinking for you a wee bit: "If the boss says go, go."

No one in the service ("Republicans posting above") would defy the boss. Voters however, are still the ultimate arbiters of wisdom. Even O-6s do not outrank civilian voters.

O'l Buddy



9/03/2013 2:46 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You're right on at least one point, Mikey -- you don't get it.

Except for 'the Boehner' -- you seem to like getting that...a lot.

9/03/2013 2:50 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

("Not that there's anything wrong with that." - Seinfeld)

9/03/2013 3:02 PM

 
Blogger Dennis Cloutier said...

Anonymous has a lot to say. Why can't he own up to any of it by identifying him(her)self. Anyone who is afraid to stand behind their words has no impact on the conversation, as far as I'm concerned.

9/03/2013 3:31 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Guess that means you're clearly mistaken, Pennis...but it's a free country. I'm fine with letting the Constitution do most of the talking here. Unlike you, I realize that this issue isn't about me.

Dismissed.

9/03/2013 4:35 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dennis-
I suspect most of the anonymous posters are active duty, not long separated/transitioned/retired, like yourself.

As active duty, as you well know, publicly posting opinions critical of senior brass or politicians can lead to repercussions to our lives and careers.

While we want our opinions to be heard, we are not willing to take the risk of adding our names to them simply so you can decide we are worth listening to.

I know you understand that, being prior Navy, so why make a point of it?

9/03/2013 6:01 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, GEN Dempsey regarding a U.S. senator's question on what we're seeking with the proposed military actions in Syria:

"I can’t answer that, what we’re seeking."

9/03/2013 6:15 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Syria will be Obama's "kobayashi maru"

http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=Kobayashi%20Maru

9/03/2013 7:22 PM

 
Blogger Mike Mulligan said...

"You're right on at least one point, Mikey -- you don't get it.

Except for 'the Boehner' -- you seem to like getting that...a lot."

Get what?

"Boehner and me are one"...that was a hilarious joke for both of us.

9/04/2013 5:21 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"(Whoops -- there's that God thing again. Another tough day to be an atheist...)"

Fortunately the actual oath doesn't include the phrase "So help me God," that's an optional addition.

9/04/2013 9:56 AM

 
Anonymous SparkyWT said...

During a long road trip Tuesday I was able to listen to the broadcast of Kerry, Hagel, and Dempsey outlining the need for action. In their statements and the following Q&A not much discussion was raised on the possibility of escalation by Iran.
To the best of my knowledge, Assad is a 2nd rate dictator who is controlled by his Iranian backers. If we strike him, are we ultimately helping the Iranians? My thoughts are Tehran sees Assad's useful days as being over and they want the US to help remove him from power. A missile strike that weakens the resolve of his forces is precisely the action that helps Tehran. Assad's position is weakened and he may come under additional US attacks, ultimately removing him from power (runs, dies, etc). As DC is saying "no boots on ground", this is exactly what Iran wants since thye lack of a US ground presence (and I am not advocating for one) gives DC little say over who assumes power after Assad. Iran with their IRGC-Quods force and Hezbollah proxies will have a big say in Syria's next leader.

9/04/2013 11:47 AM

 
Anonymous FormerSTS2 said...

Why can't we just "Sit this one out" It seems to me that right now every bullet fired over there kills somebody who hates America. I work for a federal agency, we can't even buy F'ng toilet paper..and now we're going to send hundreds of missiles at a million or so $$ each flying to hit probably fake and/or abandoned targets. Complete waste of time, and resources. Let these fools sort out their own stuff, and then negotiate with the winner to sell our stuff in syria. We need to start following the Prime Directive a little more!

9/04/2013 12:31 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Due to more or less obvious reasons, the real calculus that goes into any military action is not ever fully revealed to the public. All we get to see & hear is the tip of the iceberg logic-wise, but it is always one with an emotional arc that is designed to get the masses to decide to side with the gov't du jour.

I personally have little doubt that the chess game being played has a strategic and undermining intent for Iran...but we won't even see the real moves. All IMHO.

9/04/2013 1:43 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yea, but if you go back and read the stuff that is now declassed on Korea and 'nam, their reasoning can be as solid as mud, they often don't have a clear political goal, and they handicap the military's ability to meet its objectives in fear of escalation.

9/04/2013 3:20 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, to put a finer point on it (all CONJECTURE): What if the war with Iran is starting with Syria...and they're simply going to be the second one to know?

One way to wage a war is to first start cutting off your enemy's appendages...such as Syria is to Iran.

It's interesting as to what is NOT being talked about these days...particularly Iran's nuclear weapons program that was (is?) in the process of crossing Israel's and the US's red lines. With time going by, shouldn't this be higher on the day-to-day discussion and priority lists? Maybe it is?

An all-out frontal assault on Iran would be clumsily done at best. Would be better to first start taking out their other, known troublemakers such as Syria before "going downtown."

In other words: if it doesn't make any military sense to go bonk Syria on the head for acts whose outcomes amount to just 1% of the deaths in their civil war, maybe the real bullet points for the agenda lie elsewhere. Such as Iran.

Taking Syria out would make them a whole lot less troublesome when/if a strike on Iran happens.

Again...all IMHO. I have zero access to classified information these days, and I rather like it that way.

9/04/2013 3:46 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If the US wanted war with Iran, they could have justified it anytime in the early-mid 2000s when Iran was sending weapons and personnel to help the Iraqi insurgency.

We don't want war with Iran. Look at a terrain map and you'll understand why, not to mention their allies have nukes.

9/04/2013 6:01 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

No one wants a war with Iran. But, bad terrain or not, letting them have their own nukes does not appear to be in the cards.

9/04/2013 6:27 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Okay, your theory is that we take Syria as a staging ground to wage war with Iran.

But we already took Iraq, which is on Iran's western border and Afghanistan, which is on Iran's eastern border.

So I say again: our political leadership, who has actually wanted war several times in the past half century hence we went to war, does not want war with Iran. They know that it would be difficult, costly, and could incite World War III.

The best we could do is bomb the shit out of them, which has proven to be ineffective at doing much of anything without conducting a follow-on land invasion, which is nearly impossible thanks to insane mountain ranges throughout the whole country that render our technological advantages in armor and helos unusable.

Syria is about trying to maintain the international gentleman's agreement not to use chemical warfare, and to that I say: Why isn't the U.S. pressuring the UN and NATO to do its job and uphold international treaty instead of trying to make a case to be the sole nation to hold another accountable?

9/04/2013 6:54 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes...and to my earlier point: if current actions don't make sense on the surface (and they don't...the UN, NATO and the Arab League should be all over Syria), then something else may be the real agenda.

9/04/2013 7:59 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You're giving people too much credit.

The world writ large is sick of international meddling via Afghanistan and Iraq. As those two wars are winding down, here's the U.S. trying to get the world involved in another nation building attempt.

Then there's the moral paradox we've built for ourselves: It's okay to kill hundreds of civilians via drone strikes in Yemen and Pakistan to kill terror suspects but god forbid a leader kills his people with chemicals...that's heinous and we need to stop it! What criteria makes someone a terror suspect worth the lives of a half dozen civilians as well? That's classified! But rest assured that there is a rigorous screening process to mark arabs for death along with any innocent civilians who may be within the blast radius.

I think most intelligent people think that when it comes to war, everyone is going to use whatever they have available to win, Geneva Conventions be damned.

So this is where we're at -- a U.S. yet again itching to put its bloated military budget to use and the world saying enough already.

History repeats itself -- there's no hidden agenda, just a bunch of stubborn old men who drew a 'red line' in the sand and don't want to lose credibility for being wrong.

9/04/2013 9:39 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Off Topic:

Today, they forcibly dry shaved that murderous fucker Hasan.
At Leavenworth, One will adhere to all regulations at all times.

He's been stripped of his commission and freedom and it will be several years before he exhausts both of his appeals. Think about going to the brig in a wheel chair along with needing a catheter to pee. What a comfortable lifestyle he's made for himself. Plus keep in mind, not all prisoners are murderers. There will be other prisoners who might like to have a word with Hasan about blindly killing his fellow soldiers and service personnel.

9/04/2013 10:04 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"History repeats itself -- there's no hidden agenda, just a bunch of stubborn old men who drew a 'red line' in the sand and don't want to lose credibility for being wrong."

Not to argue, as I don't find much value in that, and yet...there is always a hidden agenda in the launching of a war. Always.

9/05/2013 6:19 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

No. Stay out of Syria. Much easier to deal with a dictator than religious zealots. Plus, terrorists have co-opted the rebel movement. As such, the region will be more stable with Assad.

Be that as it may, Arabs killing Arabs is something I really don't have a problm with.

9/05/2013 9:03 AM

 
Anonymous EW3 said...

Most of the talk on TV (and most posts here) deal with the question in a very limited way.

I'm not in favor of our getting involved, but if we are going to I'd like to hear answers to the following questions:

Syria has SS-N-12 missiles. How do we respond if they fire a few at our ships?
What if he hits one and there are casualties?

If we use manned aircraft, what do we do if he shoots one (or more) down? What if the pilot(s) survive?

What do we do if he shoots a few Scuds with gas warheads at Israel?

What do we do if Iran shoots a few Scuds with gas warheads at Israel?

So many ways for this to spiral out of control.


9/05/2013 9:17 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"But any opportunity to kill some sand niggers gets my vote."

8/31/2013 6:02 PM

Well then I hope you get to go - yours is a life worth risking.

9/05/2013 11:59 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Shortest & wisest answers to all related questions on Syria...and elsewhere:

Sun Tzu said:

The art of war is of vital importance to the State. It is a matter of life and death, a road either to safety or to ruin. Hence it is a subject of inquiry which can on no account be neglected.

The art of war, then, is governed by five constant factors, to be taken into account in one's deliberations, when seeking to determine the conditions obtaining in the field.

These are: (1) The Moral Law; (2) Heaven; (3) Earth; (4) The Commander; (5) Method and discipline.

The MORAL LAW causes the people to be in complete accordwith their ruler, so that they will follow him regardless of their lives, undismayed by any danger. [HARMONY]

HEAVEN signifies night and day, cold and heat, times and seasons. [TIMING]

EARTH comprises distances, great and small; danger and security; open ground and narrow passes; the chances of life and death. [RESOURCES...INCLUDING YOUR ENEMY'S]

The COMMANDER stands for the virtues of wisdom, sincerity, benevolence, courage and strictness. [LEADERSHIP...including WISDOM]

By METHOD AND DISCIPLINE are to be understood the marshaling of the army in its proper subdivisions, the graduations of rank among the officers, the maintenance of roads by which supplies may reach the army, and the control of military expenditure.

These five heads should be familiar to every general: he who knows them will be victorious; he who knows them not will fail.

Sunzi (2012-05-17). The Art of War (Kindle Locations 522-527). Kindle Edition.

9/05/2013 12:16 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Our military leadership follows Clausewitz's theory much more than Sun Tzu's.

there is always a hidden agenda in the launching of a war. Always. Not really. People think that because they don't understand the thought process and how political leadership can sometimes arrive at a very wrong conclusion when it seems the obviously correct answer is practically slapping them in the face.

What actually happens is someone in the administration, who the President thinks is a smart stand-up guy, gets it in his head that it's a good idea to go to war with a country because of XYZ reasons. Korea and 'nam were fought because some very educated people thought that the USSR was out to invade the world and that if we didn't stop them in East Asia, then Eastern Europe was next on the horizon.

Then the educated guy gets horse blinders on and pushes it through.

It's especially easy to think this because it's not very clear why we went to war with Iraq. The stuff the President said publicly didn't make a whole lot of sense (it never did with Bush).

Really, the war was orchestrated by Donald Rumsfeld to send a message to Arab nations that the U.S. was not to be fucked with. Iraq was a low-hanging fruit with a shattered military due to the Gulf War in the early 90s and Saddam had no allies to stop us.

Military leadership knew it was inevitable that we'd go to war with Iraq as early as the late 90s, and had a fairly robust plan to conduct the war that included a massive occupation force to keep the peace and an exit strategy to go with it.

But good old Donald Rumsfeld in his second tenure as SECDEF thought he knew better than all the Army Generals and refused to allow them to conduct the invasion with the massive amount of forces they wanted (forces which, btw, were ALREADY in the military). Rumsfeld thought that the Army was stuck in mid 20th century warfare and that he alone was going to force them to become a leaner, faster, more efficient fighting force. After all, he had done it successfully in Afghanistan.

Colin Powell tried to object, but between Rumsfeld and Cheney he was told to stfu and color, and Bush trusted those two more than Powell when push came to shove.

All the while Bush stayed out of this and took his monthly vacations and made those terrible speeches.

Well, the rest is history as we say, but that's why we are where we are. There's no tinfoil hat theory in Iraq, just a stubborn old man who had the President's ear and who thought he knew better than military leadership. And so it goes with pretty much every war since WWII.

9/05/2013 3:46 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Really, the war was orchestrated by Donald Rumsfeld to send a message to Arab nations that the U.S. was not to be fucked with."

We're in violent agreement there, though the finer point on it I would make is that "Arab nations," in particular, meant Saudi Arabia, and without all the oil inconvenience that would accompany attacking S.A. itself.

As you say, that's no tin-foil hat theory...but neither was it public information or part of the reasons given when we did invade Iraq.

Great, related book: America's Secret War by Stratfor founder Dr. George Friedman. Truth.

9/05/2013 4:05 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I got my info from Cobra II, also a great book.

Yea, it wasn't what Bush said to the public to 'sell' the Iraqi war, but I wouldn't call information contained in openly published books a 'hidden agenda.'

9/05/2013 4:38 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Cobra II was published in 2007...four years after the U.S. invaded Iraq.

I wouldn't call that anything but after-the-fact analysis. It certainly didn't provide timely insights into the real (unhidden) Iraq agenda.

9/05/2013 5:40 PM

 
Blogger Vigilis said...

The U.S. has positioned several DLGs off Syria's coast in preparation for what? Juan Caruso believes there are three plausible reasons for such forward positioning (Military Symbolism, Political Decoys, Plausible Deterrence). Fewer than 25% of TSSBP's readers lived through the "Gulf of Tonkin incident" used by a Democrat president (Lyndon Baines Johnson) as the excuse to lead the U.S. into the undeclared tragedy known as the Viet Nam Wa.

I must DISAGREE with you, Juan. The situation today bears an unsettling resemblance to the "Gulf off Tonkin" incident --- the flimsy, later discredited, excuse for undeclared war. Why undeclared? Only during a declared war (as WW2 was) can traitors be convicted of conspiracy to commit espionage during a 'time of war', and executed like Ethel and Julius Rosenberg were in 1953, though the U.S. had not been at war with the Soviet Union to whom they were convicted of passing atomic bomb information.

Just a thought from an independent voter.

9/05/2013 8:17 PM

 
Blogger Mike Mulligan said...

So has this site become the jilted by the military soldiering and Christian extremist Timothy McVeigh, who ends up hating the USA and its government above everything else...

“McVeigh found that the further west he went, the more anti-government sentiment he encountered”...

We talking about spinning any historic ends into hating government...

9/06/2013 5:27 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Use your words, Mike. Speak English.

Or not. We can appreciate the silence.

9/06/2013 8:16 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Surprised no one has compared Syria to Serbia/Kosovo air war, when NATO-led airstrikes were used to topple the dictator (Milosevic). As someone on NPR was saying a few days ago (might have been former Gen Clark, then the NATO Commander), there are some differences: there was unified pressure from other countries for him to leave, and he was given an 'out' to leave the country.

I agree w/ most posters above: there's no emminent danger to the US here. Further, why are we deciding to intervene in Syria? What about Riwanda and the 1-2 MILLION people who were killed there? Cambodia during Pol Pot's terror? Indonesia a few decades ago? (I fear the true answer is close to: no one CARES about these places, but Syria/Iraq/et al are close to Israel, oil, trade routes, etc)

I truly hope we don't waste a penny on a TLAM/air strike over Syria. Better to spend that money on gas to train our folks (you know, that liquid that most non-submariners need to get anywhere!), practice bombs to hone our skills, parts to fix our stuff, training to learn something, bonuses to hire quality veterans away from private companies, etc (and that's just within the DOD).

9/06/2013 11:34 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The TLAM's are already bought and the fuel to go on mission was already paid for on Oct 1, 2012. The DoD doesn't 'waste' anything by conducting a TLAM and air strikes...they only waste money by not conducting TLAM strikes.

9/06/2013 12:39 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What's going on in the military these days with the introduction of gays in the open...?

Read for yourself...and yes, this is real:

"I write to you on a matter of great urgency. After reading this letter, please sign this petition to Acting Secretary of the Air Force Eric Fanning.

Today, I learned that the Air Force chain of command at Lackland Air Force Base (San Antonio, TX) has read Senior Master Sergeant Phillip Monk his Miranda rights. This is a serious matter. When a member of the armed forces is Mirandized it is a strong indication that those officials believe there has been a violation of the Uniform Code of Military Justice.

As you may recall, Sgt. Monk was relieved of his duties on June 25th when he refused to agree with his openly lesbian commanding officer, Maj. Elisa Valenzuela, that a subordinate's expression of opposition to same-sex marriage constituted discrimination. Later, on August 20th Sgt. Monk filed a petition for redress with Valenzuela under the UCMJ (Article 138).

As I understand it, Sgt Monk is now under investigation for making false official statements (UCMJ 107) for stating publicly and to the press that he believed he was being discriminated against due to his Christian beliefs. These are not even official statements, friends. These are trumped up charges.

This investigation is nothing more than intimidation. The Air Force is telling Christian service members that if you are a target of religious discrimination, you must remain silent about it or risk court martial.

Sign our petition to Acting Secretary of the Air Force Eric Fanning as we ask him to intervene immediately and protect the religious liberties of all service members -- not just Senior Master Sergeant Monk alone.

Click here to sign the petition to protect Sergeant Phillip Monk from Air Force Court Martial

Sincerely,

Lt. Gen. (US Army-Ret.) William "Jerry" Boykin
Executive Vice President

9/06/2013 2:54 PM

 
Blogger Gunner Goz said...

Want another couple of wars? Because both Syria and Iran will happily ramp up the the global terrorism going big time and then we'll really be in the shit. Better we just re-instate the draft, announce that we are going to depose both countries' governments and occupy them for the next 20 years, and go for it with 50+ divisions in a year or so. There is nothing "limited" about striking Syria since Murphy's Law applies and who knows what happens once the first cruise hits home?

9/06/2013 4:33 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What's going on in the military these days with the introduction of gays in the open...?
Telling an individual that you don't believe he deserves the same rights you do because of who he is attracted to is the very definition of discrimination.

I hope the AF SNCO gets the maximum sentencing.

Back to the stone age with you.

9/06/2013 6:18 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"So what have I learned in 50 years? I've learned that one's worldview depends on one entering argument -- whether or not one believes that they have a soul. As we've seen the rise in atheism and agnosticism in Europe start to spread to the U.S., I'm predicting that America will start to divide along the lines of atheists vs. religious people. Personally, I fully fall into the camp that believes I do have a soul. I know it can't be proven (in the same was that the existence of gravitons can't be proven experimentally, and I believe they exist), but that's the way metaphysics works. There are things that happen inside my head that I can't explain with biochemistry, and I choose to explain it by the existence of a soul that exists outside of four dimensional space-time. Since a soul offers no evolutionary advantage, it must have been created by God. When America is divided into camps that can't even agree on this entering argument, it will be difficult to reach common ground on many issues, but I have faith that the genius of the American system will allow us to survive and thrive."

-- Joel Kennedy (a good man that has the courage to speak his truths)

9/06/2013 8:05 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Maher Assad, the older brother of Bashar, is calling the shots. He is conducting the attacks with chemical weapons, and Bashar has no say-so in it.

Hafez al-Assad crushed rebellion ruthlessly, and his son, Maher will do exactly the same. That is the leadership context for the Syrian outcome, and is the compelling argument for punishment strikes. The strikes will not put US boots on the ground, but they may produce consequences that we do not wish, and those unintended consequences may develop into a situation which requires NATO boots on Syrian soil. So far, the evidence from the 21 Aug attack on the E. Damascus suburbs does not confirm the use of nerve agents, but rather the use of thermobaric warheads, and this leaves some unclear points in our justification for enforcing a ban on the use of chemical weapons against civilians.
We must discount most of what is being said and done by the Israelis and the Saudis, the Iranians and the Russians, and even France and England, as we address this situation with a congressional debate.
We must commit to war entirely on the strengths of our own arguments over whether the Assad regime has crossed Obama's red line. That red line was an obvious mistake, and Obama knows that now. But how to climb down from it?
The Brits could not find a humanitarian argument for striking, and I do not believe the Americans will find a No-Chemical-Weapons-on-Civilians argument for strikes either. In my opinion, we should take out Iran's general Qasem Soleimani and Syria's Maher al-Assad, and then wait for Bashar to flee the country.

9/07/2013 7:09 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The strikes will not put US boots on the ground, but they may produce consequences that we do not wish, and those unintended consequences may develop into a situation which requires NATO boots on Syrian soil.

Yes, NATO will fight the war with E-2s and below and O-2s and below, but the U.S. will only use E-3 and above and O-3 and above with combat experience.

9/07/2013 9:06 AM

 
Blogger Mike Mulligan said...

I hate the mono world view where we only look at one set of unintended consequences. It is really weighing the risk of a set of potential unintended consequences against each other.

You know when somebody does that to you they are trying to shove their policy down your throat…

Doing nothing entails enormous unintended consequences risk…the WMD future risk, the risk of the president of the USA not keeping his word and the USA has become weakling because the congress is in chaos with disagreement.

9/07/2013 1:08 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mikey, you appear to be projecting your own messiah complex and need to feel important on the country as a whole. No thanks - this is one to sit out.

9/07/2013 3:33 PM

 
Blogger Mike Mulligan said...

naw, I am just freely giving you my perspective...

9/07/2013 5:56 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Nation: Obama's Syria War Is Really About Iran and Israel

Ba-dump-bump. You read it here first.

9/07/2013 8:40 PM

 
Blogger Mike Mulligan said...


You get it, if Iran nukes Israel it not in our interest.

Better yet, if a nuke comes by a disintegrating Pakistan or unsecured Russian nuclear weapon that Iran uses to bomb Israel...it not in our national interest.

If a nuclear weapon detonated on a innocent country...stay out of it.

That is where we are headed with Syria WMD...

It is a sloppy slope with the USA putting away from the world...

We can’t afford to stay connected to the greater world...




9/08/2013 9:53 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonough said Sunday that an impending U.S. attack on Syria would send a message to Iranian leaders that they should not feel free to develop nuclear weapons."

There's that agenda thing again. You heard it here first.

9/08/2013 9:21 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You want to know why government spending is out of control? How about this jewel from anon 12:39:

“The TLAM's are already bought and the fuel to go on mission was already paid for on Oct 1, 2012. The DoD doesn't 'waste' anything by conducting a TLAM and air strikes...they only waste money by not conducting TLAM strikes”.

Obviously he fails to grasp that replacements would need to be procured for the expended assets.

But hey, that’s a different budget so it doesn’t count.

RE: Bush:
Joel states that he is a moderate realist and I believe that he is.

He also states that moderate realists are Democrats. When you self identify as a Democrat then you are one step away from Blame Bush as a policy. Today he took that step.

As for the rest of it, I personally think we should sit this one out but agree with RD (can’t believe I said that) that if the boss says go, we go.

9/09/2013 10:33 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Obviously he fails to grasp that replacements would need to be procured for the expended assets.

But hey, that’s a different budget so it doesn’t count."

Yea, you don't realize that the more TLAMs we buy, the cheaper the per-unit cost is. Plus we save on maintenance/storage cost on them.

Why do you think the Seawolf class submarine was so ungodly expensive? It's because Uncle Sam canexed the program after just 3 units.

Also, they use the least capable missile in order to rid the inventory of the old missiles that they don't want to keep around anyway. Without using them, they would eventually decommission the missile and effectively wasted $570k in 1999 dollars on scrap metal.

9/09/2013 7:48 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Widely respected and apolitical think-tank Stratfor: Syria, America and Putin's Bluff

9/10/2013 9:09 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Worth noting that Russia just conducted a demonstration ("test launch") to remind us of their strategic might:
http://rt.com/news/submarine-trials-bulava-failure-542/

Just to add very recent context to the Stratfor article.

9/10/2013 4:14 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

A missile not used is a missile wasted although it is still free because it was paid for earlier.

The replacement missiles are also free because they replace obsolete missiles that were used or not used.

Got it! Please don’t breed.

9/10/2013 8:52 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yea, makes perfect sense, don't it?

Damned if you don't, damned if you do. Fire it and you have to build a new one. Don't fire it and you still have to build a new one, plus pay to dispose of the old one and all the maintenance/storage costs up to that point.

But hey, I don't do the US budget. 535 other people and the President screw that up.

9/11/2013 5:23 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Perhaps the last comment on this thread, here's some clarity & wisdom from Stratfor founder Dr. George Friedman on the subject at hand:

Excerpt:

"It is said that when famed Austrian diplomat Klemens von Metternich heard of the death of the Turkish ambassador, he said, "I wonder what he meant by that?" True or not, serious or a joke, it points out a problem of diplomacy. In searching for the meaning behind every gesture, diplomats start to regard every action merely as a gesture. In the past month, the president of the United States treated the act of bombing Syria as a gesture intended to convey meaning rather than as a military action intended to achieve some specific end. This is the key to understanding the tale that unfolded over the past month.

"When President Barack Obama threatened military action in retaliation for what he claimed was the use of chemical weapons by the Syrian government, he intended a limited strike that would not destroy the weapons. Destroying them all from the air would require widespread air attacks over an extensive period of time, and would risk releasing the chemicals into the atmosphere. The action also was not intended to destroy Syrian President Bashar al Assad's regime. That, too, would be difficult to do from the air, and would risk creating a power vacuum that the United States was unwilling to manage. Instead, the intention was to signal to the Syrian government that the United States was displeased.

"The threat of war is useful only when the threat is real and significant. This threat, however, was intended to be insignificant. Something would be destroyed, but it would not be the chemical weapons or the regime. As a gesture, therefore, what it signaled was not that it was dangerous to incur American displeasure, but rather that American displeasure did not carry significant consequences. The United States is enormously powerful militarily and its threats to make war ought to be daunting, but instead, the president chose to frame the threat such that it would be safe to disregard it."

9/17/2013 10:05 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Strategy, Ideology and the Close of the Syrian Crisis is republished with permission of Stratfor."

9/17/2013 10:54 AM

 
Blogger hussain ladak said...

Upcoming Latest cars and vehicles, Latest Mazda Models, Racing Cars, International Sport Cars, Concept Cars, PS-Pod, Strange Vehicles, Nissan, Royce Corniche, Ford Concept Cars, Strange Vehicles, Mercedes and More Sport Cars and Vehicles with Pictures and Info
WorldLatestVehicles.com

9/26/2013 6:40 AM

 
Blogger Brad maddox said...

Upcoming Latest cars and vehicles, Latest Mazda Models, Racing Cars, International Sport Cars, Concept Cars, PS-Pod, Strange Vehicles, Nissan, Royce Corniche, Ford Concept Cars, Strange Vehicles, Mercedes and More Sport Cars and Vehicles with Pictures and Info
WorldLatestVehicles.com

10/24/2013 5:26 AM

 
Blogger Brad maddox said...

Trading is the Best Business Ever in the World.. All News updates about Forex Business, Latest Currency news updates, latest forex trading business updates, trading updates, forex trading latest news, forex brokers directory, forex brokers list, Dollars news affairs, Stock Markets, stock market news, stock market analysis, technology news, international forex markets, international forex business news and all updates about Forex Trading
ForexAffairs.Com

11/08/2013 7:51 AM

 
Blogger hassan asim said...

Top Ten Classified Website List, Pakistani Classified Sites, USA Classifieds, Indian Classifieds, Entertainment Articles, Entertainment News, Entertainment Pictures, Bollywood, Hollywood and Lollywood Pictures and Videos, Entertainment Latest updates, Hot Entertainment News and Pictures Funny Entertainment Pictures, lol Pictures, Funny Pictures and every thing you want...
www.hotcurrentaffairs.com

12/27/2013 12:29 AM

 
Blogger rashid omer said...

All Latest and Current Affairs, News updates about Forex Business. Latest Currency news updates, latest forex trading business updates, trading updates, forex trading latest news, forex brokers directory, forex brokers list, Dollars news affairs, Stock Markets, stock market news, stock market analysis, technology news, international forex markets, international forex business news and all updates about Forex Trading
ForexAffairs.Com

1/01/2014 1:58 AM

 
Blogger muhammad asim said...

Top Ten Classified Website List, Pakistani Classified Sites, USA Classifieds, Indian Classifieds, Entertainment Articles, Entertainment News, Entertainment Pictures, Bollywood, Hollywood and Lollywood Pictures and Videos, Entertainment Latest updates, Hot Entertainment News and Pictures Funny Entertainment Pictures, lol Pictures, Funny Pictures and every thing you want...
www.hotcurrentaffairs.com

1/09/2014 8:42 AM

 
Blogger fariya khan said...

Lol is the Laugh out of Laugh where you can Fun Unlimited and Laughing Unlimited. The Best Lol n Troll Network with the Name of Lols Gag... Troll Images, Prank Peoples, Funny Peoples, funny planet, funny facts, funny cartoons, funny movies pics, iphone funny, funny jokes, Prank Images, Fail Pictures, Epic Pictures, Lols and Gags, Lol Pictures, Funny Pictures.
LoLsGag.Coma

1/20/2014 10:27 PM

 

Post a Comment

<< Home