Homemade Mortars in Nicaragua

Anti-government protestors are building their own weapons, because the .gov instituted gun control. Facing gunfire, Nicaraguan protesters build own mortars

Demand for the makeshift shells has jumped in recent weeks as anti-government protesters seek to fend off President Daniel Ortega’s riot police, who are accused of unleashing deadly violence as the Central American country faces a sociopolitical crisis.

Government forces have AK-47s. Protestors have shotguns, Molotov-cocktails and now mortars. They are (so far) designed to injure not kill.

The Masaya resident said protesters are ultimately fighting an asymmetric battle, anyway: “Police carry AKs; they carry shotguns.”

“They are the only ones who have access to weapons,” he says. “The people have been able to repel them with stones, Molotov cocktails and mortars — with the only things we can use to fight.”

The populace was disarmed for their own protection. Of course it also ended up protecting the government.

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If You Aren’t Paying Attention, Maybe You Shouldn’t Be in the News Business

The New York Times has noticed that nuclear weapons exist. (Well golly, a Republican is in the White House.)

Even for the NY Times, this is one-sided. It’s as if the media has just woken up to the reality of nuclear weapons – but don’t quite understand that reality. ‘This Is Not a Drill’: The Growing Threat of Nuclear Annihilation – The New York Times

Let’s start with the easy stuff. They do mention Iran as a nuclear threat (possibly). But they don’t mention Obama. And while North Korea is on their minds, they don’t mention the deal that William Jefferson Clinton (and Co.) negotiated with NK, even though a primary source is William J. Perry, onetime Secretary of Defense under William J Clinton.

It’s odd really, because I could have SWORN that the NYT covered every word uttered by the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists and their Doomsday Clock. At least when a Republican was in office.

Then they take the canonical cheap shot at “Duck and Cover.” But you see duck and cover was never intended to protect you from “an atomic bomb landing nearby.” If you are close enough to see the flash (don’t look at it) the next thing that will happen is that every piece of glass from every window will be turned into hundreds of bits of shrapnel and hurled through the air. If you are far enough away to survive the shock-wave, you might want to avoid being cut to shreds. Just sayin.’

But then by the 70s the US had decided that it didn’t want to try to survive a nuclear war. The Russians never came to that conclusion and they have blast and fallout shelters for a large part of their population. They are still building them. The Swiss added shelters to their building code, and so have shelters for 100% of their population. Or nearly so.

When the Cold War ended nearly three decades ago, “we believed that the danger of nuclear annihilation had gone away,” William J. Perry told Retro Report. … “We’ve never been able to re-grasp that it’s come back,” he said of the risk, adding ominously that, if anything, “the danger of some kind of a nuclear catastrophe today is actually greater than it was during the Cold War.”

Who is this “we” that he’s talking about? Does he have a mouse in his pocket?

The Swiss voted sometime in the past 15 years or so to KEEP fallout (and other) shelters in their building code. Why do you think they did that? The Russians, as I’ve said, never stopped building shelters – well maybe for a few years, but they have been building them in the past few years.

When India and Pakistan were making faces at each other, and Pakistan demonstrated that they are in fact a nuclear power, no one should have thought, the danger of nuclear weapons was passed. And I think – I’m sure someone will correct me if I’m wrong – that the Obama administration stopped Israel from bombing Iran’s main nuclear research site, so clearly the Israelis don’t think the problem has gone away. And have the reporters (and this professor) just been completely IGNORING everything that has been going on in North Korea the past few years? If Missile tests and Nuclear Explosions don’t paint a picture for you, maybe you shouldn’t be in the news business.

The Science and Security Board of The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists has moved its Doomsday Clock 4 times since 2010, and each time it has moved closer to Midnight. (It currently stands at 2 minutes to midnight.)

But hey look, a Republican is in Office and suddenly they are awake the possibility of nuclear war.

Here’s a collection of my posts on Cold War 2.0, and then some basic information on thermonuclear weapons, it includes a video for those threatened by big words.

How Do You “Crash Through” the Gate at a US Military Base?

There are well established ways to stop a vehicle. Why aren’t we using them? Travis AFB explosion: New details in possible attempted attack at Travis Air Force Base in California – CBS News

A car loaded with propane tanks ran through the main gate at Travis Air Force Base in northern California on Wednesday night. Military personnel ran up to the burning car that exploded in flame after breaching the security gates.

This is beyond stupid in this era of terror attacks. Every base should be secure.

The main gate at Travis was closed for 12 hours after the incident and officials say there is no known threat to the base or the community.

I would say it’s the unknown threats that they need to consider.

Hand Grenades in Sweden

Things are not going well in Sweden, even though the .gov is trying to make everyone wear the rose-colored glasses. Hand Grenades and Gang Violence Rattle Sweden’s Middle Class – The New York Times

Daniel Cuevas Zuniga had just finished a night shift on a Sunday last month, and was cycling home with his wife, when he spotted a spherical object lying on the ground, stopped and reached down to take it in his hand.

That’s when the round object, an m-75 grenade, detonated. Cops attribute it to local gangs targeting each other or targeting police.

Like many of his neighbors in Varby Gard, Mr. Borisho had sought asylum in Sweden to escape a war. He knew what a grenade sounded like. As a commando in a Lebanese militia, he had handled grenades, and remembered the strict protocols he complied with, locking up the weapons for safe keeping the minute he returned to camp.

That a grenade should be found on the sidewalk outside a kebab shop, a few steps from an elementary school, was difficult for him to take in.

“Now, when I think of the future, I am afraid,” he said. “I am afraid for Europe.”

When you’ve lost the immigrants, and you’re in the process of losing the New York Times, things are really bad for a Leftist agenda.

German military procurement is “one hell of a complete disaster.”

Remember when Trump accused NATO allies of not pulling their weight in the treaty organization? They aren’t. German Navy experiences “LCS affect” in spades as new frigate fails sea trials | Ars Technica

The German Navy has a lot of problems right now. It has no working submarines, in part because of a chronic repair parts shortage. The Deutsche Marine is still flying helicopters older than their pilots—the Sea Lynx entered service in 1981, and the Sea King in 1969—and has long-delayed their replacement. And now the service is facing problems with its newest ships so severe that the first of the class failed its sea trials and was returned to the shipbuilders in December.

Now a ship failing sea trials is most definitely NOT the fault of the NAVY. (Though this is a new design, and that may be the fault of the navy.) But not having any operational submarines due to lack of parts is a logistical problem, and probably has a budgetary cause – as in the politicians don’t want to pay for defense. As witnessed by the age of the helicopters flying off frigates and destroyers.

Of course the problems are not limited to the Deutsche Navy, they are just buying really large items. German military is falling behind, and the US is putting it on notice – Business Insider

A few of things that are wrong:

  • Helicopter pilot training has been outsourced to a private company – most of the Bundeswehr helicopters are out of commission.
  • Only 95 of 244 Leopard 2 tanks are in service.
  • Only 29 of 93 commissioned fighter jets are combat-ready. (Only 66 are operational)
  • In recent NATO war games they were forced to disguise broomsticks as machine guns to hide the fact that they don’t have enough equipment.

Things haven’t been getting better the past 4 years.

All these problems are hurting recruiting. (Gee, you think?) Even German politicians are beginning to bring some heat.

“We should not develop the reputation of being one of the world’s best freeloaders,” Wolfgang Ischinger, chairman of the Munich Security Conference and Germany’s former envoy to Washington said.

I don’t believe that the current government of Germany (Angel Merkel was finally able to get a coalition government formed 6 months after the election) will be able to do anything like increase defense spending. Certainly not to the 2% of GDP level that was in an agreement.

B2 Spirit Bomber

The US Air Force has been forward deploying bombers to the Pacific in the usual “just in case” mode over North Korean insanity. NK is playing nice for now, but The Olympics Won’t Last Forever.

The B2 – usually know as The Stealth Bomber – was included in the mix. Ever since I first saw these things, I thought of all the planes in the US arsenal, they most look like an alien craft. All these years later, I still feel that way.

Here’s a video (part of one anyway) of a B2 dropping a bunch of bombs on some targets. Even the kinetic impacts of dummy bombs impact on a mock airfield is fairly amazing.

The way the bombs are kicked out of the bomb bay is just fascinating. (I can’t recommend the entire video, as it is just too long. But parts of it have interest. At least through the attack on the mock airstrip.)

Posted in War |

Nuclear North Korea. Missile Warnings. Random Thoughts.

“Those who don’t know history are destined to repeat it.” Edmund Burke, (1729-1797)

Bill Clinton’s administration signed a “deal” with North Korea that was supposed to ensure they didn’t get nuclear weapons. (How’s that working out?) The political class loves deals. They love to talk. Because ultimately, it means they don’t have to deal with the issues, but can kick them down the road. This is true of local politics (look at Chicago’s pension crisis as an example) as it is in geopolitics.

The video below is of Clinton. He is so sure that this deal will ensure “peace for our time.” He didn’t say that, exactly. I don’t think any politician will utter those exact words since the travesty of the Munich Agreement, when Neville Chamberlain told the Brits to “go home, and sleep quietly in your beds.” That was right before the Germans kicked off World War II. They didn’t get peace in their time. We didn’t get a nuclear-free North Korea. (And I doubt we will see a nuclear-free Iran, but that is story for another day.)

On the subject of nuclear weapons. Americans never learned the lesson of the Cold War. The US government’s position that any preparation in the face of nuclear war was pointless. Hollywood was ready to lend a hand with that myth. (Actually, I think they just wanted to spend the money in other ways.) Russia didn’t hold that idea. They had (have) substantial shelters – at least near Moscow. And the Swiss have fallout shelters for their entire population. I believe it was written into their building code sometime during the Cold War. (It isn’t tough to build fallout shelters, and not impossible to build blast shelters. Though you do need time.) The Swiss even considered relaxing the requirement for shelters (2005), but ultimately decided it was worth the cost to be prepared for war or terrorism.

In terms of being prepared. It is important – even if you don’t have a prebuilt shelter – to know what to do. The BBC, of all places, has a reasonable article on the topic. How to survive a missile attack: What’s the official advice?

Secondly, don’t try to run. You’re safer inside the closest, most protective building – below ground if possible, somewhere like a concrete basement.

The goal should be to put the maximum space between yourself and potential nuclear fallout.

Not “distance.” Matter. Concrete and earth. Books. Anything. And take some food, and water. While radiation can travel through stuff, fallout is in the form of dust. Breathing it in, or getting it in your eyes, or a cut is bad. I won’t give you info on shelters, because that info is easy enough to find with your favorite search engine. (I hope that’s not Google, but hey…)