Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Snatching Defeat from the Jaws of Victory

Only conservatives could get such an early start in losing the 2012 election.

In just two weeks you have Newt Gingrich calling Congressman Ryan’s Medicare proposal “right-wing social engineering” and trying to affix Ryan with the “radical” label.  Honestly, I didn’t think it name calling and labeling would happen for maybe, three months.

In perhaps one of the most intriguing (maybe astonishing is a better word) exchanges you have Rick Santorum trying to explain how he knows more about waterboarding and interrogation techniques than John McCain.  Admittedly Santorum was trying to connect the waterboarding techniques used to get information out of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed with the success of the raid on Bin Laden and not specifically trying to get into with McCain.  Yet get into with McCain he did nonetheless.  You have to be sharp enough to drop or ignore the issue rather than to go into extensive detail about interrogation techniques when John McCain’s name is even mentioned. 

But to say this, "And so this idea that we didn't ask that question while Khalid Sheikh Mohammed was being waterboarded, he (McCain) doesn't understand how enhanced interrogation works.  I mean, you break somebody, and after they're broken, they become cooperative…” shows that Santorum hasn’t a scintilla of instinct when it comes to running for the most powerful office in the land.

If you read John Hubbell’s book POW, and every American should read it, you’ll know that John McCain is somewhat an expert on how enhanced interrogation works, and he is the antidote to Santorum’s implication that once broken there is no more resistance.  Anyone that has been through SERE (Survival, Resistance, Evasion, and Escape) school knows that everyone will be broken, but the key difference in the US Armed Forces Code of Conduct and US training, is than when able, the POW is to begin resisting again to the greatest of his ability. 

If you read Hubbell’s book, you’ll see that McCain needs no such lecture from Santorum.  He and many others endured unimaginable “enhanced techniques” and resisted well beyond what I think is humanly possible. 

Santorum simply proved he is not astute enough to avoid a bear trap the size of the state of Texas, and he makes his situation worse by explaining more.  Could it get worse?


You also have Republicans now hem-hawing about how much hardball they are willing to play on the Debt Ceiling – Spending Cut fight.  Their wavering under the flimsy and false pretenses of paper deadlines and pseudo-cataclysmal fallout shows that they lack the commitment to take responsibility for governing this nation.

Their doddering is another example of where “real change” simply means change of party and not change of action or consequence.  Until conservatives have the courage to confidently steer the ship on a truly conservative course, Obama should remain cozy in his La-Z-boy.

You have the very odd situation where Mitt Romney, truly a newly minted conservative, is trying to justify the support and signing of a state bill that is eerily similar to the most liberal piece of national legislation ever passed.  Gingrich would likely classify him as a Left-wing conservative, or more appropriately as an opportunistic flip-flopper.  Neither of which makes Romney Presidential material for conservatives.

So in very short order, you have a former conservative leader calling a sitting conservative leader a radical and social engineer.

You have a former Senator telling a sitting Senator, former Presidential candidate, former POW who can barely lift his arms, that he don’t know jack about interrogation techniques and torture.

You have conservatives backing away from real fiscal change as they appear to cave in to the lame and vacuous counter arguments that the dems are barely backing themselves (see Dick Durbin on Fox News Sunday, 5/15/2011) in regards to raising the debt ceiling.

And you have a “conservative” justifying state run health care in the context that it isn’t exactly like Obamacare.

In summary, you have no civility, no leadership, no common sense, no adherence to basic conservative issues while in control of the House of Representatives, no credibility, and no chance of defeating Obama in 2012.

I wonder why there is a Tea Party.

Don’t Believe Everything You Hear

China’s top general complimented the US military last week in such a fawning manner that many in the military and in elected federal positions likely took those compliments as a sincere assessment from an impressed and dissuaded foe, rather than clever and mendacious comments delivered by an ingenious and guileful enemy.  Make no mistake, this was an international head fake done with skill and with the specific intent of getting us to relax our guard.
When General Chen says "What I'm trying to say is that we do not have the capability to challenge the United States.", he’s not saying that China does not want to challenge the United States.  He is not saying that China is going to suspend all of its weapons programs because he was so impressed that China is now deterred for the next millennia.  He is not saying that they now have a good reason to cease development and production of their stealth fighter.  And he is certainly not asking for hands across the water and a long chorus of Kum By Ya. 

He is simply saying that they have not matched our capabilities yet, and that he really, really hopes that the US will let its guard down while the Chinese make leaps quantum leaps necessary to match their armed forces against ours.  The specific intent of his blunt statements, which were not made by someone ready to give up his sword and sign capitulation papers, were to get the US to reduce our military budgets, reduce our reconnaissance of their coast line, and to lull us into ten years of stagnation while they blow past us like they did in Olympic diving.

The Chinese are acutely aware of our penchant for overspending and keeping ourselves on the precipice of budgetary crisis, as they hold a preponderance of our debt.  General Chen was planting a seed that sends the perfect message to liberal money-grabbers; we can cut defense spending because we are soooo far ahead of the Chinese, we can relax for a few years in weapons development.  There will be no listening to conservative think-tanks that see this for the Bangalore torpedo that it is.  We will be urged to believe our new, good friend General Chen and his frank honesty in assessing the true state of military affairs in the world.  We should all give a thumbs up and in chorus say, “Mission accomplished.”

Don’t look to the top layers of the Pentagon to put up much of a fight.  It is natural for the many narcissists at the top of the military to take these compliments as validation of a lengthy and laborious effort, but because of their egos, they will miss the covert nature of Chen’s message.  Over the objections of the real operators, who recognize this as a disinformation campaign, the top brass will be smoozing for their next assignments by bringing out accounting like assessments showing cost benefit curves proving that we can stay ahead of the Chinese with little or no spending over the next ten years or so.  Liberals will latch onto the brass’ acquiescence as the roadmap to substantial budget cuts in an effort to turn the table on Republicans.  Republicans will be pinned between their budget cutting efforts and General Chen’s statements, and they will lose the fight in trying to sustain or extend weapons programs and operational spending, and consequently our tactical and strategic advantages over the Chinese.

Admiral Mullen is obviously buying it, "I think part of the discussions, and General Chen spoke to this, is his view of how far ahead the United States is technically."  What follows that kind of talk is budget cuts.
One of Chen’s direct goals is to get the US to reduce its coastline surveillance of China.  Our fortitude combined with our technology here is key to keeping the Chinese from achieving their longest standing objective, the re-taking of Taiwan.  Chen’s comments “As a matter of fact, the reconnaissance activities along China's coast by U.S. military aircraft and vessels are seen in China as deterrents.", are specifically designed to try to get the US to relax its efforts in order for China to begin to develop a window in which to launch a campaign to restore Chinese “unity.”

With statements like, “As it is known to all, the United States is a super-power in the world today; how can China easily have the ability to challenge it? That is simply not part of Chinese culture and we do not have that capability. We would strive for world peace, civility and development and well being of the whole humankind...The United States has far more advanced weapons and equipment."  General Chen may take Miss Congeniality at the next Miss World pageant. 

World peace is not a stated goal of the Communist Chinese government, expansion of their version of communism is.

We Americans have been suckered into complacency more times than we can count, and we only overcame years of neglect and narcissism (post WWI, post WWII and pre-Korea, post-Korea, the Carter years) on our guts and the shear will of the individuals in the military (Guadalcanal, Pusan perimeter are striking examples). 

We should not be led down a path of complacency and neglect by someone who has read Sun Tsu more times than most of us have read the Sunday comics.  This is part of the Chinese national strategy, don’t be fooled.

You don’t have to be a former military officer and Asian history major to receive General Chen’s message loud and clear.

I'm Back

Not sure there is anyone out there who cares, but apparently I have lost my gig with Townhall.com beacuse of my sparadic submission schedule.  Guilty.  The pieces I am about to put up were submitted to Townhall, but I have heard nothing back, so up they go.  Welcome back to anyone who is still poking around my blog.

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