People (in the media) Seem Shocked That There is No Peace in the Mideast

I’m not sure when most of the folks in the media started paying attention, but there has been no peace in the Mideast since before the formation of the State of Israel. Look up the bombing of the King David Hotel, or Operation Black Sabbath (both in 1946) for examples.

The Washington Post seems confused. And this confusion confuses me, because as long as I can remember, the WaPo has been covering the West Bank, Gaza and Israel. Not to mention things like the war with Lebanon, or the wars (plural) with Egypt. Hamas, Israel signal unwillingness to compromise – The Washington Post. Maybe there is a new crew of reporters/editors. That must be it.

Let’s see… the way it went this time, is the way it has always gone. One side sees some issue, and they take an action. The other side responds. Eventually this leads to rockets being fired into Israel, and a response of Israeli air attacks, followed by ground attacks.

The stark assessments offered little hope for quick progress toward ending a 14-day-old conflict that has inflicted heavy costs on each side.

I also think that calling the conflict “14-days-old” is disingenuous at best. And a bold-faced lie, more likely. This conflict has been going on since at least the 1948 Arab-Israeli War. And maybe a bit longer than that. But hey, its the WaPo. If the conflict is only 14-days old, then it isn’t Obama’s fault he hasn’t settled things yet, it just got started…. Just you wait. But Gaza and the West Bank were added to Israel after the Six-Day War (1967) after the IDF defeated Egypt, Jordan and Syria (who were fighting with help from Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Algeria, and others). So the conflict is at least that old. And there was a war in Gaza in 2008 and 2009. And a similar operation in Gaza in 2012 (Defensive Pillar). Continue reading

Posted in Media Bias, Politics | Tagged , | 1 Comment

Texans Still Armed, Home Invaders Still Getting Shot

Bad way to make a living in Texas… SAPD: Southside homeowner shoots intruder – KABB – San Antonio Top Stories – News, Sports, Weather, Traffic.

He was trying to break in at 3:30 AM.

The suspect was hit multiple times and is now receiving treatment in a local hospital.

Good Guys 1, Bad Guys 0.

Posted in Self-defense | 2 Comments

Break Into Homes, And You Will Eventually Meet an Armed Resident

The results for you won’t be good.

First, we have a case from Alabama. Man attempting to break into home shot in leg by homeowner | WIAT 42.

The suspect was seen breaking into the home when the homeowner saw him and told him to stop. The suspect didn’t comply and the homeowner shot him in the leg.

Or this guy, In Independence, MO, who broke into a home at 4 o’clock in the morning. Independence homeowner shoots intruder | The Kansas City Star.

“At some point there was a confrontation between him and the homeowner,” said Independence police spokesman Tom Gentry. “The homeowner had a weapon and shot the intruder.”

Breaking into homes is a bad idea. These 2 outcomes are not unique. This kind of thing happens every day in America, namely bad-guys getting taken out of the game by armed, law-abiding good-guys.

Self-defense is a human-right.

Posted in Self-defense

NSA Surveillance Targets Everyone

I know this is late, but it has been a crazy week. And not likely to get better. In NSA-intercepted data, those not targeted far outnumber the foreigners who are – The Washington Post.

Remember how the Administration said that you had nothing to worry about with NSA snooping? They were lying to you.

Ordinary Internet users, American and non-American alike, far outnumber legally targeted foreigners in the communications intercepted by the National Security Agency from U.S. digital networks, according to a four-month investigation by The Washington Post.

Info that you probably wouldn’t want to share with the world. Has this been useful to the government? Sure, they have examples of bad guys caught using the data. But there is a lot of data not pertaining to bad guys.

Many other files, described as useless by the analysts but nonetheless retained, have a startlingly intimate, even voyeuristic quality. They tell stories of love and heartbreak, illicit sexual liaisons, mental-health crises, political and religious conversions, financial anxieties and disappointed hopes. The daily lives of more than 10,000 account holders who were not targeted are catalogued and recorded nevertheless.

The other thing they lied about… Snowden couldn’t have access to the actual communications, just the metadata. Turns out that was a lie, since he just released a whole bunch of communications (4 months or so ago.)

Posted in Loss of Liberty | Tagged ,

Happy Fourth of July: Or What to do when the beer runs out

Bottle Boys…

Posted in Musical Interlude | 1 Comment

Nice Sequence of a Hurricane Strengthening

Visible Spectrum Loop of Hurricane Arthur The National Weather Service and the associated services that run the weather satellites, do a pretty nice job. This sequence is the visible spectrum loop of Hurricane Arthur up to about 3:45 this afternoon.

Click for a larger view of the GIF. Note that the time scale at the bottom of the image is Universal Time Coordinated (UTC) or Zulu time.

This captures a nice view of the center of the storm getting much more organized. “Nice view” since I no longer live in hurricane country. And if you don’t either, be glad you don’t.

Arthur-rgb-animatedUPDATE: Infrared view of Hurricane Arthur making landfall in the barrier islands of North Carolina. (Longwave Infrared with the Rainbow enhancement.) The eye of the storm is clearly visible as it makes landfall.

Click the image for a larger view. And if you are not in the North Carolina barrier islands, be glad. Even at category 1, that is way to close for comfort.

Note: For general Hurricane Center satellite data, see the NHC menu of options. For satellite images/loops of specific storms, you can visit the Goes Satellite Floater page.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged

First Woman Promoted to Four-Star Admiral in US Navy

Leadership Lessons From Admiral Michelle Howard, The Highest Ranking Woman In Naval History.

While today’s proceedings make history, Howard is no stranger to firsts. In 1999 she became the first African American woman to command a Naval ship, the amphibious dock landing ship USS Rushmore. Howard was also the first African American woman in any branch of the military to reach three stars. In the past she’s been deployed to Indonesia for tsunami relief efforts, participated in Maritime security operations in the North Arabian Gulf, and served as commander of a Counter-Piracy Taskforce where–three days into the job–she spearheaded the rescue of Captain Phillips from Somali pirates.

File this under people you should know.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged

Capt. Richard Phillips to Obama….

Capt. Richard Phillips to Obama: Do more to stop pirates – The Washington Post.

This is the guy first made famous by his harrowing capture by pirates and subsequent rescue by US Navy Seals, and then made famous again by the Tom Hanks’ movie named after him.

Phillips met with the president in the Oval Office the following month. But it appears that will only take Obama so far. The captain is coming out in a public relations offensive against the White House’s new counter-piracy plan. It is time for the United States to “zero in on the pirates’ nests and eradicate them,” Phillips said in news release published Wednesday by a maritime officers union.

I am not holding much hope, since I haven’t seen this Administration “zero-in” on anything except a golf-course.

Posted in Maritime Piracy | Tagged | 1 Comment

Malacca Straight Sees Renewed Pirate Attacks

Why should you care? Because a whole lot of oil and 30 percent of total world trade moves through that region. Can you say “increased costs?” Southeast Asian pirates on the prowl once again ‹ Japan Today.

The Obama Administration just released (June 20) an updated “Counter Piracy and Maritime Security Plan” which focuses mainly on Africa – the Horn of Africa and the Gulf of Guinea specifically. (I can’t force myself to read the whole thing.) But it misses this upswing in Indonesia.

While most of the attacks have been small-scale, one stands out.

In one attack on May 28, the Thai tanker MT Orapin 4 was hijacked north of Indonesia’s Bintan Island.

The pirates reportedly painted over its name, destroyed communications equipment and brought in a smaller tanker vessel to siphon off much of the ship’s 3,700 metric tonne oil cargo. The vessel and crew were later released.

Where there are successful pirate attacks, you will see more piracy. And this attack has been repeated.

It isn’t clear that given everything going on politically in Asia, that the powers have the will to work together, but working together is the only way naval powers have ever gotten people to stop “sailing on the account.”

Posted in Maritime Piracy | Tagged

Use the weapon that is at hand

A pellet gun wouldn’t be my first choice, but it got the job done. Woman shoots would-be burglar with pellet gun » National News » McAlester News-Capital, McAlester, OK.

GamoPellets“I opened the door and saw him holding the TV,” she said. “I had my gun around the corner and I grabbed it and started yelling. He looked at me and he didn’t drop the television so I fired off a round and then I shot him in the leg. I’m a good shot.”

[The picture is of the type of pellet used. Click for a better view.]

A .22-caliber pellet air pistol loaded with steel pellets. Again, it wouldn’t be my choice, but it got the job done.

Self-defense is a human-right.

Posted in Self-defense