Tag Archives: BAE Systems

Creation of the non-Humanitarian

It is a simple thing, according to many religions there are gods, in some cases they refer to the same being, yet there are two groups, the agnosts, they believe that there is something larger than all of us in the universe, but they are not sure about the name, the shape and where he or she is at. Then there are atheists, they categorically deny the existence of a stronger power and they have their reasoning in this. This happens and we shrug on people who are one or the other and we go on with our lives. 

Now what happens when these two groups enter humanitarian sides? 

There are then two groups, those who believe that there are humanitarian values to be found in some way but they have no idea what shape it takes and they will evolve into homo sapiens, the people that believe in self and ‘self’ alone. Weirdly enough these groups are created by human rights organisations. The article (at https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2019/dec/11/bae-systems-accused-of-being-party-to-alleged-war-crimes) give a visible rise to all this. Companies like the Campaign Against the Arms Trade (CAAT) are creating these two new waves.

Apart from the denial of the reality of what is happening, we see that they are groups that are just flaky, the fact that they attack one arms dealer and then go in denial of what is actually happening is just too weird. How can we believe in some humanitarian approach of being in denial, whilst we know that an alternative is available next door? It is a one sided approach to being in denial, others can buy weapons wherever they like, except from us. What these people don’t understand is the fact that dealing with a nation like Saudi Arabia would open doors for talks, would open doors for optional resolutions. When we look at the War in Yemen we see two things:

  1. At almost every turn we see the Saudi Coalition painted as a negative force
  2. At almost every turn the actions of Hezbollah and Iran in the Yemen region was not reported on and ignored.

These two points do not make good bedfellows, they have polarised views and to up all that I placed an image (that came from the Guardian article at https://www.theguardian.com/law/2019/jun/20/uk-arms-sales-to-saudi-arabia-for-use-in-yemen-declared-unlawful) with the view of the CAAT that I saw mattered, the view of two suspected teachers and two grandmothers, none of them with a proper global view, all just out there to stop UK Economy and having no idea why they are there in the first place.

It seems like a harsh view, yet the problem that everyone ignored is that the weapons that Houthis fired came from Iran, forces came from Hezbollah and both are Iranian fueled, they get there weapons most likely from Russian sources (partial speculation). 

So in all this, when we see people with such blinded agenda’s and no idea on the hard that they are instilling, how can we remain Humanitarian when we see such stupidity? I get it that there are people that are against the arms trade, yet at that point they are against ALL arms trade, that is fine, I get it some people hate weapons, so I am OK with that sentiment, yet the reality of Yemen is a lot more and to blatantly believe in #StopArmingSaudi without knowing what Iran and Hezbollah are up to is just stupid, it is like saying to the boy in the street, you should not defend yourself whilst he is being attacked by two bullies. I personally believe it to be a shortsighted view of pacifism. And I do not oppose Pacifism, The movie Mel Gibson ‘Hacksaw Ridge‘ shows us a real pacifist, he did not stay at home, he went to war as a medic and he did so without brandishing a weapon because of his views. A role beautifully played by Andrew Garfield. Now the world is no longer that simple, no longer that Black and White, Yet I wonder how those two teachers and those two grandmothers survive giving aid in Sanaa, even as they stopped BAE Systems, even as the achieved #StopArmingSaudi, when we see that Houthi forces are given new rockets and guns by Iran, whilst they are restocked by Hezbollah, will they survive with their narrow views? As we see that Houthi rebels are attacking aid workers, killing plenty in the process, none of those troops were supported by BAE Systems were they? 

How can we live in such ways with a limited mind?

So whilst we read “BAE Systems is cited in the complaint because the British arms giant is the principal supplier of Eurofighter Tornado and Typhoon jet aircraft to the Royal Saudi Air Force, which has conducted a string of deadly strikes Yemen, as is the UK arm of Raytheon, which manufactures Paveway IV guided missiles used in the conflict“, the question becomes are these Humanitarians meely humanitarians or are they opposing Saudi Arabia, are the anti-Muslim? And when we see “It also references Airbus companies in Spain and Germany, France’s Dassault and Thales, Italian group Leonardo, the Italian arm of Germany’s Rheinmetall and units of European missile manufacturer MBDA in France and Britain. Dassault supplies fighter aircraft to the UAE” I get a chill wondering whether these people are merely there to give Iran a free pass to prolong the suffering in Yemen, because that is what they are achieving. So whilst we get emotional over “A child injured in a deadly Saudi-led coalition airstrike in 2018“, all whilst we ignore the dozens of images that we see regarding the atrocities committed by Houthi forces all over Yemen, and that is not even the larger number of casualties committed by Houthi forces as they stopped humanitarian aid to civilian victims, that number goes towards 50.000 alone and will double by years end, in all this we seem to think that #StopArmingSaudi was the answer, all whilst the parties are ignoring the part that Iran plays in all this, any Humanitarian that is this short sighted is not a Humanitarian, they are merely part of the problem, that is the realisation that they need to make. I know they put on blinders and go with: ‘But what if we stop one, then the next, then the next‘ it is the ‘What If’ group of people that are the danger, this mess is a lot more complex than anything we know and there might be cause to interfere, but why not by having an international naval fleet who sinks ANY ship sailing towards Yemen carrying weapons? That too would have stopped the suffering to go on this long years ago. But that was not done, was it? 

The reality of the matter is that BAE Systems was not a bad organisation, the Saudi Government was not evil, and the mess we see in Yemen is caused through an uprising supported by Iran whilst the legitimate government asked Saudi Arabia, their neighbour to intervene, Iran is not even on that entire landmass, and Hezbollah is 4 countries away and a terrorist organisation. Is it not interesting how all those elements were overlooked by Humanitarian organisations?

There are even more factors visible, but I believe that they will muddy the view, the important factors are out there now, including the idea that places like CAAT are a reason to stop having any humanitarian views at all, what we do not realise is the mere fact is that the Humanitarian ideals are supposed to be: “having concern for or helping to improve the welfare and happiness of people. of or relating to ethical or theological humanitarianism“, what we see here is merely driving Corporatocratic ideals. Of course the people at CAAT will deny that this is so, yet their actions are very much driving corporatocratic ideals, just not in the UK. And when we see the one quote in the article when we read “arms made by 10 companies “contributed to the capacity” of the Saudi-led coalition in the conflict“, a stage where there is complete denial of the Iranian side of the matter, denial of the Hezbollah side of the matter, a stage that prolongs the armed conflict, we see the aside that opposes Humanitarian needs, we see a different side and the people all remain in denial, mainly because those two grandmothers looked so cute, two nana’s trying to #StopArmingSaudi

It is nice to know that Iran and Hezbollah did not get mentioned in that ordeal, you cannot have a one sided humanitarian approach, that is perhaps the strongest side of all and the 50,000 cadavers in Yemen are proof of that. 

 

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NATO @ 70

Yes, there have been a few issues in the last few weeks and if we try to highlight to pieces we would go crazy, mainly because one element truly is less likely to be one. Too many issues cross contaminate and give rise to other elements, as much as we do not like it, so is the issue of NATO. even from the first image we see (Donald Trump and Recep Tayyip Erdoğan get close at the summit in Watford), we get the issue of treason to deal with (at https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/dec/04/how-does-nato-look-at-the-age-of-70-its-complicated). We seemingly forget that Turkey was the one nation stopping US assistance until all debts were forgiven, you remember those two buildings in New York? They were no longer there and hours later and it started a larger war, but Turkey stated that even as a NATO party it was supposed to be on our side, it merely was on its own side. We then seemingly forget the issues that plagued Turkey, we did not ask for any support on the hundreds of journalists it put in prison, we seemingly forgot to give any level of documentation from  Turkey, and even now, we treat it like it is an ally as it has given a larger concern to Russian hardware. NATO did nothing in light of all this, you see any corporatocracy is about the revenue of the whole and limiting that is a larger concern to those in control in Strasbourg, we could even argue that Turkey played the game brilliantly. Yet the people @ NATO are not given any requirements for evidence and for accountability.

Consider the quote we see: “Nato’s focus continues to spread. The summit is the first time its leaders have considered the rise of China, which has never been a focus for the organisation; they also confirmed that it was time for Nato to have a military presence in space, and they worried about cyberwarfare and Russian disinformation“, the two elements in play are 

  1. Rise of China tech (Huawei in 5G)
  2. Russian data bindings.

The two elements are given in different stages in the statement and off course they are given in a different light, yet the larger given setting has ben visible to a much larger issue. it is about economic advantage and NATO has none to play, merely the use of fear mongering that goes without saying, even as the UK PM adds to the fire with ‘Boris Johnson suggests Huawei role in 5G might harm UK security‘ the truth of the matter is that both the UK and the US still have not shown ANY LEVEL OF EVIDENCE that this is (going to be) the case, they are the tools of a corporatocracy trying to hold onto the next iteration of economy, a place they cannot be because they relied on flaccid technologists to create IP instead of relying on the status quo to continue, both elements fell short and the advantage of the far east came into play. This is the direct result of short sightedness and to be honest, my IP going to Huawei will be just fabulous, it would for me be the difference between a value of $2 billion and optionally $4 billion and I get 35% of either that amount (I’d be happy with either setting). 

In the second the entire consideration of Russian data bindings. As they get to syphon off the entire social media they get an advanced edition of data, the advantage that the US banked on is lost to them, or better stated they are not the only ones with access and for corporatocracy that is a larger failing, data shared is data lost meaning that larger bulks of data will go towards Russian entrepreneurs and they are hungry for a slice of the revenue cake that is in circulation, it is an amalgamation of revenues that are overlapping and larger pieces of it are starting to be lost to places like NATO, making their position smaller and more scrutinised than ever before, that is the consideration that one faces when one is nothing more than a stepping stone for any corporatocracy. It does not end there, because of the fiasco’s that the US introduced to NATO security, the first was the USS Zumwalt class, a ship that had to be almost completely redone AFTER LAUNCH, so far it is a $21.5 Billion fiasco and when we see corporatocracy setting the sun on fiascos this large, it tends to undermine places like NATO to some extent, the second fiasco is that matter is F-22, a raptor that looks awesome but is like a drained cobra, which looks nice, but in the end until it refocusses its poison is merely deadly looking and it was supposed to be deadly. Then there is the flaws that the F-35 has, in the end it all comes down to an exercise in tapping the vein at $2.7 Trillion dollars. No matter who in NATO signed up for all of it, the defense forces have close to a $3 trillion dollar fiasco and there is no substitute. All whilst Russian and Chinese engineering is making headway in several directions.

In all these events we merely see that NATO has lost traction and has lost a futuristic setting of that hat comes, it can no longer predict and whatever it predicts is based on data that all people players now have, it lost whatever advantage it had. 

All whilst those connected to whichever corporatocratic setting of checks and balances are now without any kind of accountability and as such corporations get to fill their pockets on a stage of $3 trillion that has nothing to show for it and we ask why this is not countered? Well actually the gravy trains are making sure that the question is not offered out loud, or at least not at the intensity and volume required. The Hill produced and article a little over a year ago with the headline ‘The long NATO gravy-train may soon be over for Europe’ (at https://thehill.com/blogs/congress-blog/foreign-policy/412837-the-long-nato-gravy-train-may-soon-be-over-for-europe) yet the current statement as we see NATO @ 70 gives light (read: indication) that this is still very much on the mindset of too many people, as such the gravy train is still gobbling up resources on a global scale. Even as we saw “Both Trump and Obama even accused NATO members of relying far too much on American citizens and free-riding of the U.S. security umbrella” we are left in the dark that the needs of NATO are to a larger extend Raytheon, Northrop Grumman and BAE systems and all three have issues. So whilst we seemingly adhere to “While all 28 NATO members agreed in 2014 to spend at least 2 percent of their GDP on defense, only the U.S., Greece, Estonia, United Kingdom, Latvia, and Poland are meeting the minimum guideline” we all forget that this 2% is more than merely a number, three projects are shown to be huge cash drains whilst not offering the value they supposedly have, so as such there is a larger failing. in addition we need to see the value of whatever GDP Estonia has and seek it next to the Dutch and Belgium, that number is laughingly short and Estonia would optionally have made the numbers if it bought two trucks and replaced part of its military uniforms. That is before we see what the Dutch had created towards its goalkeeper signature weapon for the navy. 

There is a much larger failing going in and NATO @ 70 is not giving us the goods, merely that it is under the mandate of a gravy train whilst reporting to corporations on what is required. Corporations that are not connected to the needs of the people, they are not elected officials and merely giving their needs to elected officials who need long train rides to figure out how to spin what is required, in all this after 70 years whilst we see Recep Tayyip Erdoğan getting close at the summit in Watford to others, yet it all makes perfect sense, and especially whilst Turkey has selected the S-400 defense system. Yet that is definitely one NATO partner we want to keep close (or that is how any corporatocracy will voice it).

Yes, I believe that the value of NATO is gone, not because of what it was supposed to do, but because the people involved created new adversarial players, players that NATO was never ready to face, it was never trained to do so and some of these players are part of the problem, they were never part of the solution.

We were always going to face new adversaries, but we never knew when they would come and for the most we never considered that it was an internal review of whatever drives us that would be our adversary, all driven by greed. 

 

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Predictive Analytics or crystal ball?

We all have these moments, we all have that limelight moment that is all about the lights and not the lime; or better stated, in this world where about 23 people pointed at me, making me sound like an evangelist who is casting the bones, calling me tainted by the Afreet. They all stated that delusion was my middle name, to them today I say; ‘Hah!

The Arab News about an hour ago (at https://www.arabnews.com/node/1553251/saudi-arabia) gives us ‘Saudi Arabia’s SAMI, Navantia in SR3.7bn military deal‘, which represents a few coins less than a billion dollars in green US pieces of paper, now gives us that “SAMI Navantia Naval Industries (SAMI-Navantia) signed a SR3.7 billion ($986 million) contract with Spanish shipbuilder Navantia to collaborate on combat system integration (CSI) on the Avante 2200 corvettes for the Saudi navy“, whilst on September 1st (at https://lawlordtobe.com/2019/09/01/change-is-coming/) where I wrote “SAMI has the option of building space well over 5 times the combined spaces that Damen, Spanish Navantia and Dearsan combined have. It changes the equation a fair bit“, in response to “As the links with Navantia matures, we see the option to cater to the needs of coast guards on several national levels and these are not the small players. Some might have noticed the small mention of ‘Offshore Patrol Vessels Market 2024: New Business Opportunities for Manufactures to Upsurge in Coming Years‘, yet Navantia and therefor SAMI are in the thick of that part of the equation“, 11 days later I would be proven correctly and this is just the start for SAMI. I understand that some might unite under the expression of ‘one Swallow does not a summer make‘, but the setting of preparation was too large, too much effort had been made in several directions by Saudi Arabia and a few foreign interested parties. More importantly, the EU gravy train decision makers have been taken out of the equation. As I see it, it is merely the first of several new ventures that we will see happen and each success is an almost guaranteed stage towards the follow up job which will be substantially larger than the previous one. It is here where we see what Walid Abukhaled, Chief Strategy Officer at SAMI, as well as Dr. Andreas Schwer, CEO of SAMI are capable of when two visionaries unite in a view that has a similar direction. One would consider that it feels really good being His Excellency Ahmed Al-Khateeb this week in light of these successes, yet they are not merely successes, they are the beginning of milestones that thrust the abilities and capabilities of SAMI forward. The data was decently clear on that. It was not merely their ability, it was the hindrance that Heckler and Koch, Farbique Nationale Herstal as well as BAE Systems are finding operating under EU procedures, all whilst the procedures are nothing short of hypocrisy in the first place; a stage of what some call holier than thee ideology. I get it, there is nothing wrong with something like Campaign Against Arms Trade (CAAT), yet it can only work if it is balanced and it is not, so now they merely achieved in losing commerce for the UK (and parts of the EU). There is nothing wrong with ideology, but if it is not dipped in some level of realism, they will do more harm than good. You cannot act in one direction and after that refuse to hold Iran to account who has been visibly ignoring and shunning agreements, and these pressures are also being applied by Turkey on other fronts, all these pressure points result in turmoil and stress and the market will respond to the needs of other governments requiring the hardware to do something about it, the SAMI deal might merely be the first deal for the Saudi Navy, but there are two parts there, first the Saudi Navy is growing, second is that once the knowledge is implemented other orders can be completed as well and it is that second part that will matter even more, as the governments require additional value out of their vessels, Navantia, if SAMI delivers could get a lot more value out of their Life Support services department and these overhauls add a lot of value, which works for SAMI as a facilitator as well. In this Navantia will get the stage of upgrading and give additional services to the preventive maintenance and remote technical assistance divisions of their yard. And it is more than facilitation for Saudi Arabia, as its knowledge of logistics is applied. Whilst we think that there is no news under the sun when it comes to predictive models to support strategic purchases, and optionally scripted and tested Machine Learning techniques to expenditure control and collaborative development with suppliers through common digital platforms most do not realise that in shipping it is very different from other industries. There are external inhibitors (weather) there are operational inhibitors (idle time) and logistical inhibitors (active manpower/resources), all stages on 2-3 levels that other industries never had. It is like Google being baffled by their answer of ‘What is Standard Deviation‘, whilst the answer does not compute with the customer who knows it to be: “the angular difference between magnetic North and the compass needle due to nearby sources of interference such as magnetically permeable bodies, or other magnetic fields within the field of influence“, it is there and the fact that the answer differs on the other side of the equation where we see a mismatch of standards and concepts. Whilst we laugh away the difference, some might realise that 2 miscommunications is enough to lose out on a billion dollars and then the life aquatic is no longer a simple comedy with Bill Murray, the stage of global maritime needs has changed and changed differently from most other industries. Navantia and a few other players have remained on top of it (as well as a few other serious players), it is here where we also see larger failings. We might see growth in a report like: “LNG Bunkering will register a 65.2% CAGR in terms of revenue, reach US$ 24400 million by 2023, from US$ 1200 million in 2017“, and that report might be completely correct, and now, even whilst I have not looked into that report (as it is not important to this article), how does that growth and equation impact idle time? Anyone who ignores idle time also ignores any captain confronted by it. when we consider “new mega-vessel, more capacity and a tremendous effort to improve competitiveness and efficiency are now hand to hand with a new collaborative mind-set, involving new technology to enhance connectivity that leas the seaport supply industry to the future” we accept a growing industry, yet the premise of “Idle time at waterside (arrival and departure), constitute 38 per cent of the total port stay for a container ship, which cost billions of USD per year to the shipping lines“, we get this from Ruben F, in his thesis ‘Identification And Measurement Of Idle Times Port Visit Of Container Ships Through An Explorative And Simulation Study: The Case Of Algeciras’s Terminal‘, his advisor was Jalal Ashayeri, PhD. It is in this document where we see: “The latest news is that in 2019 NYK line will test a crewless container ship from Japan to North America (BloombergTechnology, 2017) . This is not the only carrier working in this new technological model for container ship, however the future for in this industry is still being unwritten“; there is nothing wrong with the quote, yet everyone forgets that every harbour has one darling limit, the amount of berthing space available and when we consider that dangerous cargo is a second limitation we see a larger windfall for SAMI, because weapons (specifically ammunition) is a Class One dangerous cargo, which now also means that whenever a government upgrades its navy there is a shift in what is available, and therefor pushed idle time by a lot, consider ANY harbour and consider that due to government upgrades two berthing spaces are lost due to naval upgrades. Not every navy has its own long term harbour space at times; now consider the impact on idle time and having the software to manage that more efficiently, that is where Spain and Saudi Arabia get the larger windfall down the road, not merely implementing, but managing logistics and operational options through consultants and remote servers. What some saw last month is the ‘claim’ of cyber warfare capabilities was shy of one element. The element of cyber logistics and cyber upgrading as a facility becomes more and more important, especially when you realise that those in that field have little to no experience with naval logistics and what makes naval logistics a lot more different (as well as complex and difficult) from other logistics. Most of them have no experience with idle time algorithms. That oversight might make some people run to books and learn, but unless you have the knowledge of a harbour master with added quarter of a century experience you lose out, plain and simple, Navantia has that (as do some others) yet the larger group is absent that knowledge and this is where SAMI gets the added benefits down the road.

And that makes sense how?

Well, for that we need to realise that several sources mentioned almost a month ago that in the EU (Spain was separately mentioned as well) that there is a ban on double trucks and that these trucks are given the limit of double tractor-trailers to 63.5 tons or less. It gives a larger rise to capacity problems in harbours, even as some hide behind safety issues like in “There is insufficient rail capacity, and “we would have to bet on the growth” of rail if double tractor-trailers disappeared, according to the proposal, which suggests that weight reduction would improve safety“, to me it seems that there is a larger growing capacity problem and the speed that the lack of capacity is growing at is also worrying, the ships have grown a lot bigger and whilst harbours were deepened in many parts, the amount of berthing spaces (as well as cranes, and its capacity) have not improved in a decade, this now implies that ships are docked longer, it pushes idle time by a fair bit and in all this, ships require upgrades. So when Navantia gets the added SAMI capacity to do things faster, optionally having access to Saudi berthing locations, the two together will make for additional growth options for SAMI, that part was already clear on September 1st to me. My undergrad was in ships engineering and even as I never worked in that industry (IT was too appealing) I do know what impacts there are and I do see where SAMI could be heading. There are over a dozen governments all wanting to upgrade their navy, whilst the resources and skills are almost universally lacking. I think that this Union with Navantia and SAMI will spell a lot more options than anyone realised.

The fact that the US was eager to add Australian BCT to its resources shows just how short the supply is, it is not merely cyber defence, electronic warfare, technology, and intelligence. There is in the naval sense a lack of ICT solutions to a much larger degree, it is the combination that is hard to find and some solutions are antiquated to say the least. Most IT people always thought of naval cyber needs to be too mundane or too unappealing which resulted in a maritime applicable shortage in several nations. Navantia recognised that weakness for the Spanish navy two decades ago and it resulted in a Combat Management System (CMS) called SCOMBA, now that SCOMBA is highly sought after in many places and there we see the applicability that goes beyond the Spanish navy, as the links with SAMI deepens we see that Navantia has a product that has appeal to several allied players and Navantia via SAMI gets to upgrade the facilitation that it internationally has without losing ownership of its IP, which in this day and age seems a lot more important than it was a decade ago.

Should you doubt this, you could always try the $12.99 solution (at https://www.amazon.com/Amlong-Crystal-Including-Golden-Package/dp/B005DK1AQU) and see how fast you could unload one container with 21500 kg of IMCO 5.1 at Singapore harbour, I wish you a lot of luck and fair weather handing that information over to the captain of whatever SS Minnow he is in charge, I dare you to end that conversation: ‘Get it done today, or else‘, I will be selling popcorn with a big smile and a loud laugh at that event.

 

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As perception becomes awareness

That is the stage we often face, we perceive we acknowledge, we become aware and that awareness becomes the reality we face towards the new reality we did not comprehend before. It is usually not that great a path to be on, especially when you see that the path you are on has a distinct route taking you to exactly the place no one wanted you to be.

Yet for the CAAT (Campaign against the Arms Trade), especially Andrew Smith, and optionally both Martin Chamberlain QC and Liam Fox as well. It is important to see that these people are not evil, they are not delusional and they are not entirely wrong, yet the reality that was given by CNBC half a day after my article ‘When the joke is on us all‘ (at https://lawlordtobe.com/2019/04/07/when-the-joke-is-on-us-all/) is now entering a new dimension. As CNBC gives us ‘Russian expansion in the Middle East is a ‘clear reality on the ground,’ WEF president says‘, we are also given: “Moscow has signed technical agreements and memoranda of understanding to sell its S-400 and other weapons to Saudi Arabia, Turkey and Qatar“, there is now optional noise that this could include a nice batch of shiny new MIG’s, as well as a few other items where we see that the UK is soon to lose the option to make £5 billion for its treasury giving the BAE Systems now headaches to content with. Anything that is related or connected to the UK facilitating to the kingdom of Saudi Arabia could optionally not happen, or will be receiving the standard ‘don’t call us, we’ll call you‘ status. Isn’t ideology great?

We might all (including me) accept the quote: “There is “overwhelming evidence” of violations of human rights law by both the Saudi-led coalition and other forces in Yemen, lawyers for the Campaign Against the Arms Trade (CAAT) told the court on Tuesday.” Most will be forgetting that to all interpretation, the Houthi forces are terrorist forces. Their connection with Hezbollah and Iran is not enough, the short and sweet is that they were not an elected government, they merely moved towards a coup d’état and instigated the war we see now.

So there we are, I now have to talk to the United Aircraft Corporation, owned and founded by Vladimir Putin and the parent organisation of the makers of the MIG, so as I try to get a meeting with the ‘Pоссийская Самолетостроительная Корпорация‘, on being their new exclusive contact for sales to Saudi Arabia (yes, I know, I have no chance in hell there, but I remain an eternal optimist), we see on how the high nosed ideologists are costing the UK billions, all that whilst the opposite of what the Saudi coalition is facing has been ignored or trivialised by a lot of people. You merely have to see what you can on Al-Manar (Lebanese satellite television station affiliated with Hezbollah, broadcasting from Beirut, Lebanon) to realise that Hezbollah is still a player there, it is less visible when it comes to Iran, Iran is playing the field low key and on what some call the down low. Even as the evidence is clear that Houthi forces have Iran drones, the way they got them remains unclear, speculated, but not proven and that too must be noted.

Yet in this era, and under these settings we now see that due to the CAAT, the UK will lose more footing and will have less of a voice at the grown up table that is trying to resolve the issues in Yemen. In the end the CAAT achieved nothing but the dwindling revenue stream for the UK, yet the Russian Federation will be grateful and if I get the job, I will send a huge hamper to the three parties involved (after my first bonus payment that is), the voice makers so to say.

This is the setting that governments and large corporations created form 2004 onwards, we all might have a huge national pride, but in the end, we need to sell, we need to make the cash that is required for rent and food and those in a stage where they set high moral borders in places where the impact is actually zero, you have no value, you have no gain, you merely end up with unpaid bills.

Now if governments had done something about the FAANG group 15 years ago, it would be different, but that is not the case, that is not the reality we face. You see, the fighters are just the start, as we enabled the Russians to get a foot in the door, they now have a direct path to both Syria (they already had options there) as well as Saudi Arabia (and optionally Qatar) to start deploying (read selling and training) these nations on the Altius-M drone. Especially in places where the price of a fighter is basically the same as three drones, drones will be the path many nations go and even as the America Predator looks leaner and meaner, the acts of US Congress as well as that from UK Parliament is now opening the doors for Russia, which is not a good thing (except if I get the job, it will be awesome at that point).

It goes from Bad to worse, especially for America. You see, the MIG-35 and the Altius-M are merely the start. In the end, the gold is found (for Russia that is) with the Sukhoi Su-57, I know little about that plane, yet the stories that it can outperform the F-35 are from sources that are not to be ignored, so even when we hear that the US has plans to counter that, in light of their failed USS Zumwalt comedy caper, those plans can be sneered at until they prove to work. And in the end it is almost as simple as: “Do you want this flag to be on a British, American, or Russian product?

This all matters!

You see, the arms race is important not because they are weapons, but because the economies get huge incentives through those commercialised items. The fact that at present 6 nations are on the list for that new gadget and in light of the high winded American response in the past on who was allowed to buy a F-22 Raptor and it was vetting its allies in a crazy way. Now, in all truth there might be a case for that (I honestly cannot tell), but now that we see that Russia is willing to sell to sovereign states and they have no bar, whilst we see the unconfirmed part of: “State-run Chinese media is claiming that the People’s Liberation Army has been able to track the U.S. Air Force’s Lockheed Martin F-22 Raptor” implies that the stealth part is less stealthy than we thought it was, and any evidence will drive sales towards Russia too. All parts that had much less chance of happening as the UK systems were proven, they were great and now, or optionally soon, we get the resolution that sales to Saudi Arabia are off. Whether that is right or wrong is not for me to decide, but the fact that the £5 billion loss of revenue is triggering a $12 billion shift in other directions, optionally towards Russia is a part that most ignored to the larger extent, a sales path denied because people forgot that in any war, especially against terrorist forces, the people will always be in the middle. Oh, and if you think that it is all bad, consider that the makers of the F-22 Raptor (Lockheed Martin) also has other paths, so the F-22 profits also forges upgrades and new options in commercial flying, cyber solutions, Radar solutions, Communication platforms and a lot more, in that we see BAE Systems that has services in finance, Cyber security, Compliance solutions and a lot more. Now, the one sale towards Saudi Arabia might not impact it to the largest degree, but a change has been made and the competitors now get a larger slice to play with, and it can lead to additional repeat business, it is not a secret, it is not even an unknown, any person with a decent knowledge in Business Intelligence could have told you that and there is the problem, the one-sided ideology of CAAT is now optionally going to cost the UK a lot more than anyone bargained for.

As I said, I have nothing against ideologists and ideology is great when it can to some degree adhere to commercial reality, and selling to a sovereign nation is intelligent and common sense packaged together, yet when soft-hearted people overreact on events in Yemen, whilst the stage comes from Iranian funded terrorism, how can we go against that? The fact that 16 million Yemeni’s are in danger form several sides (disease and famine) whilst the Houthi terrorists are depriving these people of food, whilst they do everything to stop humanitarian aid via Hodeida and other places, are we not buttering the bread of terrorists?

How can you sleep knowing that this is happening?

BAE Systems, Lockheed Martin and United Aircraft Corporation are not evil, they are not a danger, they sell to governments and all three want to sell to the same governments making this a buyers’ market. The moment you forgot about that part of the equation, that did not make you an ideologist, it made you short sighted and that is my largest concern on CAAT, the fact they are needlessly depriving the UK government of treasury income, yet speaking for selfishly coated me, if it pays my bills, I am all fine with that in the end.

 

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What possessed them?

The LA Times brought us the article ‘The Navy’s newest destroyer, the Michael Monsoor, is as much an experiment as a ship-killer‘ (at https://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-michael-monsoor-zumwalt-20190126-story.html) a few days ago. My personal view is that it is the ugliest vessel I have so far ever seen. Now, for a functioning being pretty, pleasing or even appealing is not a requirement. It needs to be the killer that scares every other killer and even there it falls a little flat.

The initial consideration for laughter is seen when we consider the line “In the end, what was once intended to be a class of 32 destroyers will now be only three — making for a per-ship cost of about $4.4 billion, according to a December 2016 estimate by the Government Accountability Office, the most recent cost estimate available. Including development costs, that number balloons to $8.2 billion, the GAO said“, so basically the US gets three dinghies for a mere twenty four billion dollars (aka $24,000,000,000), or twenty four thousand million

Three mechanical driven rowboats that amounts to one third of the entire US national budget on education, how perverse is that? Well, it is their tight to choose of course. Yet when we learn that “Despite the higher price, the two advanced gun systems have no ammunition, cancelled because of cost“, a smart bullet system that costs $1,000,000 per round. With the added “The gun’s shells were to be rocket-propelled, guided by GPS and loaded by simply pressing a button“, we are treated to a system that congress will not fuel with ammunition. That is the foundation of a failed and sunk project whilst the vessel is for now still afloat. It was even more fun to learn that optionally the system I designed to sink the Iranian fleet could also be used here, giving us an optional $135,000 solution to drown a $8,300,000,000 mishap, how is that not return on investment? On my side that is!

Do not get me wrong, the US is our ally and I have no such inclinations, my focus was sinking the Iranian ego trippers, I merely found it interesting to know that for a stealth boat, any stealth boat has a similar weakness and mine was set to kick the Iranian dinghies a little, so I take no pleasure that my solution is likely to work there too and it shows the failing of a design and project to be much larger than anyone considered, giving us all a lot more to ponder, because some elements should have been clearly seen on the drawing table and it seemingly was overlooked to such a large extent.

The second part in the mishap is seen when we consider that the design was awarded in 2008, laid down in 2011, launched in 2013, christened in 2014 and repurposed in December 2017 with ‘New Requirements for DDG-1000 Focus on Surface Strike

When USNI News gives us (at https://news.usni.org/2017/12/04/navy-refocus-ddg-1000-surface-strike) “The Navy is revamping the Zumwalt-class destroyer’s requirements and will morph it into a focused surface strike platform, the director of surface warfare (OPNAV N96) told USNI News today” Are you kidding me? After 8 billion and change, a path that spans 10 years (with all the fiasco’s on the internet), we see the calling of ”revamping’ instead of loudly calling the entire Zumwalt class a failure? Did the $1,000,000 per shot not give a clear indication that something extremely weird was afoot? Was there no quality calculation showing us that some implementations were not realistic and that a system like this having a flaw that might be swallowed by a $135,000 could spell a lot of trouble in any direction?

I feel particularly concerned with Rear Adm. Ron Boxall when we see: “I was very pleased with where we came out because some of the decisions were much more about the concept of what we’re getting instead of the actual platform we’re getting“. To him I would go (off course in an informal way) with: “Robby, pal, when the betrothed concept is too far from the begotten actual, we need to consider, ‘product fraud’ (you did not get what you ordered), we can go with ‘failure’ (they did not deliver what was promised) and we certainly need to go with ‘fiasco’ (congress will not allow you to purchase the bullets that the dinghy fires)“, so overall there are three levels of non-success to consider on a whole range of issues that these three puppies have and lets not call them ‘ship-killers’ ever, OK?

And when we see “at the same time look at some of the challenges we’ve had. It’s no surprise, we have some very expensive bills still outstanding with the LRLAP (Long-Range Land-Attack Projectile)” so is that a way to state that invoices were unpaid, or that paid invoices have not met practical delivery? The question is out in the open, because we can go in a few directions. It becomes a larger issue when we see the NY Times Magazine (at https://www.nytimes.com/2018/12/06/magazine/navy-gunfire-ammunition.html). Here we see: “All three of the failed projectile programs had similar design features and shared a fundamental conceptual problem. “When you try to make a rocket-boosted projectile that can steer itself to a target, you basically have built a guided missile,” said Tony DiGiulian, a retired engineer who has studied all these weapons“, with the added “So why not just build missiles in the first place?” he said. “That’s what you’ll end up with anyway” at the very end, yet leave it to an engineer to apply common sense to an optional working solution. What stopped you guys? Too much outstanding issues with Raytheon and Northrop Grumman? I could have told you that part and I am certain that the navy has scores of common sense people around, still the eight billion was spend and congress will not foot $600 million for a full armory of shells, is anyone surprised?

So not only are we confronted with “the Navy then spent $700 million to have BAE Systems and Lockheed Martin develop the Long Range Land Attack Projectile for the Zumwalt deck gun. It also came to nothing” with an added “rivaling the cost of the Tomahawk cruise missile, which has a 1,000-mile range“. And now we are treated to: “they are evaluating a new shell, called the “hypervelocity projectile,” that is lighter and narrower and could potentially be fired from the upgraded five-inch guns at targets 40 miles away. The program is experimental and in its early stages, and it is unlikely to produce a viable weapon soon“. So not only is the US Navy in a phase where they have nothing, they have been in an 11 year phase of denial and unsupported science fiction ideas that went nowhere with an optional total bill of $256 billion, averted to a mere twenty four billion by scrapping 29 (ugly) vessels.

The fun part is that there was an option to consider, weirdly enough it was not DARPA or the US Navy who came up with the idea; it was film director Jon Favreau who had the brainwave in 2009. Yes, it was a drone used in the movie Iron Man 2. Yet the idea is far less weird and less science fiction then you might think. The air force has its drones, yet the navy could have deployed its own drones, vessel drones are not a myth and even as they are not stealth, they are small enough to get in quick, fire and get out, with a Zumwalt cruiser as a home base. So when we see: “We just doubled the range of our artillery at Yuma Proving Ground,” Gen. John Murray, Commanding General of Army Futures Command, told reporters at the Association of the United States Army Annual Symposium“, we see that the Army has one part of the equation and that droning that solution might have saved the US treasury a few billions. The drones will not endanger manpower, the drones do not required oxygen and can approach submerged and all that at a fraction of the cost, was that so hard to figure out?

Now we get that the brief was never about drones, yet when you try to find a 2010 solution for a 1988 version of smart bullets (at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hfGnUzGRIuY) we need to consider that someone spending billion to not get there was a terrible idea from the moment the first invoice was paid.

Did I oversimplify the issue?

Let’s also realise that the road to triumph is paved with failures, that makes sense, as not every solution is the breakthrough we aim for, more precisely the failures tend to contribute to future success, yet in this case there seems to have been a lack of common sense on a whole spectrum of issues (or so it seems). And it is there where we see the issue in the larger field, especially with all the failures that seem to define the Zumwalt class, especially as the bulk will be shoved under the carpet through ‘revamping’.

In addition, when we revisit General Murray and consider the quote: “A 70-kilometer target range is, by any estimation, a substantial leap forward for artillery; when GPS guided precision 155mm artillery rounds, such as Excalibur, burst into land combat about ten years ago – its strike range was reported at roughly 30 kilometers. A self-propelled Howitzer able to hit 70-kilometers puts the weapon on par with some of the Army’s advanced land-based rockets – such as its precision-enabled Guided Multiple Launch Rocket System which also reaches 70-kilometers“, what would stop us from adding a drone part in there? Not in the launch, but in the shell itself. Consider the simplicity, when there is one shot, there is a lot less cyber security needed, that whilst the vision for the drone operator is merely the need to adjust the trajectory and there are accurate low expense solutions there. The initial cyber part is not too expensive and merely requires a 240-300 second fail-safe on hacking, there are plenty of solutions there. When we consider that an artillery round could be adjusted, the enemy needs to know the frequency, the codes and the option to interfere, the drone operator might not have to do anything and merely need to lock out changes at some point. An optional 12% increase on a 89% certain hit, making every shot a hit, a better result could not be asked for, so when you consider my ad-hoc idea (open to loads of scrutiny at present), we are still left with the ‘what on earth possessed them in the first place‘, we get it, the defense gravy train is very lucrative, but to revamp the brief on a 24 billion fiasco that was 10 years in the running is taking the mickey out of the entire train ride (staff, fellow travelers and equipment).

War never changes, the technology does but at some point we are confronted with the simplicity of common sense and adjusting the view towards another direction would not have been considered and preferably before the ship was launched might not have been the worst idea. If an optional solution to force a reactor meltdown is seen in a snow globe, what other ideas have not been looked at? Even when we look at it from a complete non-military way, what other options have we never investigated?

It is the same for 5G, when we consider that not the telecom operator but the consumer is at the heart of it all, we see a whole new range of solutions that brings new technologies, and new innovation and they can lead to new services and new foundations of income and profit of course.

 

 

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How to pay for it?

Yesterday’s news is not new. We have all heard the options, the opposition and the recrimination. Yet the article (at https://www.theguardian.com/world/2017/jul/23/uk-arms-sales-to-saudis-continued-after-airstrike-on-yemen-funeral) gives out more to ask of those who are on the moral ethical high ground and as such we need to make considerations, from within ourselves and towards others choosing for us.

You see, I am not stating that they are wrong, or that there isn’t an issue. We need to ask ourselves whether we should take blame of responsibility of the actions of other governments. So consider the £283m. When we consider the 2017 spring budget, that one sale takes care of the Education and health bill for spring 2017 and potentially leaves us with enough to pay the Debt interest for that quarter. So, what will these campaigners do when they are opted for one (the deal) or the other which would be no health or education money? I always love campaigners who in a downed economy make demands and have no clue or no solution on how to pay for it all. It is a really lovely group of non-deciders in most of the events.

What would I do?

I would happily go to Riyadh with my new BAE business card and sell them whatever systems they need to keep their nation safe. You see, it is the right of any nation to defend their nation. The application of the weapons purchased is up to them. Guns do not kill people, people kill people, it is basic and as I see it the correct dimensionality of a situation.

So when I read “the UK trade secretary, Liam Fox, delayed signing a set of export licences and his officials prepared for sales to Saudi Arabia to be suspended. However, documents obtained by the Guardian revealed that the foreign secretary, Boris Johnson, advised him that the sales should continue, as he judged there was no clear risk that British weapons would be used for serious breaches of international humanitarian law“, like Boris Johnson, I see no real issue. The fact that he added: ‘serious breaches of international humanitarian law‘ as a condition was politically fair enough and perhaps a definite essential condition. It seems a little cowardly, but at what point would there be a serious consideration there? Even Iran might not fall into that category, leaving us with only North Korea, Al-Qaeda and ISIS as actual risk factors and we do not deal with these three anyway.

When someone states that I am wrong and there is a clear risk with Saudi Arabia transgressing there, my question would be: ‘Show me that evidence‘. After which I get a lot of speculative mumbo jumbo and no evidence at all. In this day and age we need to consider the choices to select which is fair enough, yet to give rise to campaigners on speculative events whilst they are willing to give silence in the case of Javier Martin-Artajo, Julien Grout and Bruno Iksil, willing to shrug the shoulders and walk away without anger or indignation. Such persons are all about feigned morality because there was no blood. So how many people lost their quality of life for a long time whilst JP Morgan Chase & Co lost £4.7 billion? You think that this was merely printed money, people lost all levels of hard worked gains, pensions, savings and other losses were endured. So as we read in that case “the Department of Justice said it “no longer believes that it can rely on the testimony” of Bruno Iksil, the trader dubbed the London Whale, based on recent statements and writings he made that hurt the case” (source: the Guardian), I feel like this was an orchestrated event. First get the accusations out, make a final thrust for your own acquittal and then write a little more making it all unreliable? Consider not what he lost (stated at 80%), but that he got to keep 20% of some $6m a year (paid more than one year), in addition, whatever the DoJ agreed to in 2013, which might be his house and a few other things. So he got to keep an amount that is exceedingly more than whatever I have made or will make for my entire life, a mere 2 years of his. So as we see about extradition issues, we now see that all three walk away.

This relates to the arms deal as the consequences of that part are merely speculative and it pays for a chunk of the government budget, so I will take a job there willingly any day of the week, presenting the technological marvels of the F-35 JSF missile which can be set to the bulk of the Saudi Arabian fighters. I will gladly take the reduced 1% commission and sell 5,000-10,000 missiles, after which I fly to Egypt and sell a few more. If that gets education and health funded in the UK for the entire year, so much the better! I will sleep like a baby knowing that education and health care are safe and set in stone to be funded. My presentations would be the best stellar presentations of them all. So F.U. (sorry for this instance of Post Enhousiastic Sales Drama) to both Raytheon and Northrop Grumman!

As we can imagine at times we need to take heed (read: listen to) campaigners, when the going was good (20 years ago) and we had several options to take a high moral stance, yet at present with a collapsing NHS, with politicians showing less and less backbone against large corporations on taxation issues, the United Kingdom has a responsibility towards its citizens, not just to keep them safe, but to offer some level of any future. Those campaigners seem to think that money grows on trees and have no idea on how to get things funded; in the UK the UK Labour party is perhaps the most striking evidence of all. As Jeremy Corbyn is now in denial on student debt issues, as he was intentionally vague during the election race. Of course apart from not winning (thank god for that), the realisation that he has no options, no methods and no way to get any level of budget done without raising the current debt by at least 50% and initially projected at 80%, the question becomes, how it would have ever been paid for as people like this, and campaigners against certain paths (read: perhaps for the right ideological reasons) have no way to deal with the national issues. Leaving people with much harsher debts, increased taxation and less social security as it can no longer be paid for.

I am not against ideology, I do not believe that dedicated pacifism is a cowardly stance; it is often quite a brave stance. Yet, it is equally often not a realistic one. We can all go to Hacksaw Ridge and be amazed of the events Andrew Garfield’s character went through, showing us some of what the real Desmond Doss went through, and we can admire his stance and his courage. Yet in the end, without the thousands armed forces in the 77th Infantry division, the battle would have been lost. It does not diminish the actions of this one highly decorated person, I am merely stating that the 77th held its ground and was victorious in the end, yet we should never forget that it is still regarded as the bloodiest battle in the history of WW2, with 50,000 allied lives lost and well over 100,000 Japanese casualties.

We make choices in war and in peace. I believe that every sovereign nation has its rights for defence, we cannot vouch for the articles of war in offense and that is not our responsibility. It is not for the salesperson of equipment to say and even the campaigner for peace needs to realise that there is a stance to take, even if it is a valid choice to oppose offensive actions, we must realise that any self-governing nation can deal with its enemies in the way they seem fit, when it becomes too unacceptable we need to accept that places like the United Nations will take the appropriate actions.

So how is this different?

It should not be, but it is. Ask yourself how you would act. We can always act holier than thou when we can afford it, yet when we are confronted with being hungry or to some degree making a questionable deal that is not criminal, and it is perfectly legal, but we cannot foresee the consequence. Is it still wrong to do it? Consider that we cannot predict the future and this is not merely a legal ‘more likely than not‘. It is about legally acting correct and morally acting optionally questionable, because that is where the stance is. Should we interfere with the right of Saudi Arabia to defend itself and act, or become judging and act towards denying them that right? This is the view I think that the campaigners are not taking correctly, too hastily and in judgement of ‘some’ moral principle. Now, I am not stating that they cannot do that, it is their right and their expression of free will, but in all this, they must also than accept the setting that they will have to voice: ‘We have decided to stop all NHS healthcare and education for the upcoming Autumn 2017, as we stopped the revenue that would have guaranteed it‘, that must then be in equal measure their acceptance in this. I wonder how the doctors, nurses and teachers feel at that point.

In this we now see another part grow. Even as we agree to some extent with the quote of “The terrible funeral bombing should have been a time for reflection and for the UK to reconsider its uncritical political and military support for Saudi Arabia“, we accept that ideologically Andrew Smith, spokesman for Campaign Against Arms Trade has a right and perhaps even a valid point, yet does he?

When we see “‘Incorrect information’ meant hall in Sana’a was mistaken for military target, leading to 140 deaths, says US-backed mission” (source: the Guardian) we need to know a lot more, the actual Intel, the raw data and the decision tree. When we also see “The air operation centre in Yemen, it added, directed a “close air support mission” to target the site without approval from the coalition’s command“, we can argue and question a few issue, yet in all, who authorised the action? How was the coalition command set up? If there was an approval at any level it takes the pilot out of the equation (read: likely he was never a consideration in the first place), so even as we see questions on the actions, even when we read “Dozens of citizens fell as martyrs or were wounded in this attack by planes of the Saudi-American aggression“, whilst the actions of the Houthi rebels are left in silence by too many, including the indiscriminate shelling of places. Any war is a place where it took two to tango, which does not absolve any side of considerations, yet in all I see often a complete lack of complete information, or better stated more precise and more complete information to the extent that was possible. Even now as Yemen is using ballistic missiles attacking a Saudi Oil refinery, as Mines are killing Saudi Soldiers, we see that Yemen remains active, shooting missiles close to 600 miles into Saudi Arabia, so as such, I think that the time of recriminations are over, they have been over for some time. Even now, merely 5 hours ago, we see that Nayef al-Qaysi, governor of the central province of al-Bayda was removed from office because of his ties with Al-Qaeda. Now, the source here is the Miami Herald, and others are voicing pretty much the same article. I cannot state one or the other, yet when we see these events unfold, giving rise to one or the other without proper visible intelligence is not a given. Yet in all this, when we take the original title and make this: ‘UK approved £283m of arms sales to Saudis to fight Al-Qaeda‘ (read: personal merging of different timed facts), at that point how many campaigners would we hear? Can we agree that if Nayef al-Qaysi has ties to Al-Qaeda, they would have been there for some time?

A piece of intelligence that I and perhaps many others would not have had last October, so should I not have sold these weapons to Saudi Arabia? I do not think that I had any valid opposition to not sell and whenever we campaign (even for the best and most valid of reasons) is always a loaded gun and that loaded gun is always aimed at the victims of these actions. In my presented case it would have been the people in need of NHS treatments and students. Any person proclaiming that they have the whole picture is usually lying to you, apart from the General of the Saudi armed forces there would be almost no other person in possessions of all the facts and even then we can state with a certain level of certainty that this person did not have ALL the facts. This is what makes the opposition to any debatable act a dangerous path. We can at best hope for acting in a non-illegal manner and that is exactly what happened in this case. It was a legal transaction, one that was essential for the coffers of the United Kingdom.

We need to learn how to compartmentalise. It is in our best interest to do what is correct and to do what our bosses want of us. When we try to grow beyond that cubicle we tend to speculate on what is best and even if we agree that thinking things through is never a bad thing, unless it is our responsibility we have to act according to our better angels, which means no in opposition of law. Is it not interesting that when that happens, more often than not these actions were greed based and those transgressors should be prosecuted by law, which in the case of hedge funds traders is almost 0%, so if we want ideology, it should be on the evolution of legislation to stop economic exploitation. Yet at that point, how many campaigners remain? I reckon that list slims down a lot, because economic transgressions are not sexy enough, or it is like a happy lottery ticket that nearly everyone wants and in case of Bruno Iksil when it amounts to 20% of many millions, I would love to get that lottery ticket as well, I saw a nice place in Cognac, where I would happily retire to. A mere €850K, which would leave me well over €100K a year to live off for the rest of my life, whilst the house (read: villa) had been paid for. I admit it is a lifestyle I would embrace if it was limited to one questionable, non-illegal act. It will not make me a criminal, merely a person not hiding behind some hypocrite high moral code of conduct.

Until campaigners get in the stage of life on how to pay for their daily meal and proceed on that moral high ground, that is the first step in filtering the actual ideologists from the hypocrites, an essential first step, yet in the end, they too need to accept that some sides of life need to get paid for and they cannot vote to make thousands abstain from essential needs. It is not fair and not pretty but that is the place that deep debts have pushed us all into, the mere acceptance of our to the smallest degree of changed options in upholding any quality of life.

 

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Within the Entitlement of Relevance

Very early this morning an article made it into the Guardian. The title ‘David Cameron boasts of ‘brilliant’ UK arms exports to Saudi Arabia‘, (at http://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/feb/25/david-cameron-brilliant-uk-arms-exports-saudi-arabia-bae), which is fair enough. The UK is one of those nations that actually has an arms export option. It is nowhere near the size of the US, but that is not the point here.

When we read: “on the day the European parliament voted for an arms embargo on the country over its bombardment of Yemen“, we should be asking: ‘and why do we care about that?‘, yet this is not the case. We see both “At almost the same time, the European parliament voted in favour of an EU-wide ban on arms being sold to Saudi Arabia in protest at its heavy aerial bombing of Yemen, which has been condemned by the UN” as well as “The vote does not force EU member states to comply but it increases pressure on national governments to re-examine their relationships with Riyadh“. Which is a joke of sizeable proportions (reasoning will follow). Finally we see: “The Labour party leader, Jeremy Corbyn, has been extremely critical of Cameron’s relationship with Saudi Arabia because of its human rights record, prompting an angry response from Riyadh“, which could be seen as a humorous climax in labour less form.

We need to deal with the quotes so that it all makes sense to you, but there is one more element in that story. That we see from: “Oliver Sprague, Amnesty International UK’s arms controls director, said: “The ‘brilliant things’ that David Cameron says BAE sells include massive amounts of weaponry for the Saudi Arabia military, despite Saudi Arabia’s dreadful record in Yemen“. I needed to add this to all this, because there is the start.

You see, I am on the fence here. I will happily support Amnesty International, because for the most it is a force of good. When I see the title ‘UK’s arms controls director‘ I wonder if AI lost the plot a little. Let’s be clear here. It makes sense that AI has people on the payroll who understand weapons, understands mines, chemical ordnance. That makes perfect sense. AI is in need of knowledge on many levels and plenty of their work is in places where people tend to passionately not like each other (as in: with clubs, machetes and automatic weapons). Yet, when AI is wasting time on a valid business deal, we should ask a few additional questions. Now, we should quickly mention another side. At https://www.amnesty.org.uk/press-releases/amnesty-expert-barred-london-arms-fair, we see ‘Amnesty expert barred from London arms fair‘ as well as his quote “They’ve kept me out, but the question is: what has DSEi got to hide?” Let me answer that instead of the DSEi. You see, I could with my own expertise attend that event, and like him, I will equally hear “alas sir, you didn’t meet the criteria for registration“, even though there should be a few around in that field who know my skill levels in that regard. It is not skill or expertise, you see, it is about CLEARANCE LEVELS. These events are frequented by a massive who’s who of unregistered events, with a decent amount of government employees who need to talk shop, having non-cleared people on that fair tends to be a little unsettling for several reasons. In part because this world has its own rules, you obey those rules or you stop functioning in that world. There is every chance that I could accidently make the mistake whilst Oliver Sprague would intentionally do these things. Most of these people shy away from cameras (apart from those special social functions), they are there to talk shop!

You see, I have every respect for Amnesty International, they have done many good things in the past and will continue this in the future. For example stop torture makes perfect sense. There is also a questionable part from AI, it is nice to talk about the Human Rights Act, yet in the decades they have never succeeded in championing the need to add Spousal Abuse to article 3 of that HRA. Is spousal abuse not torture in its own rights? In that regard AI likes to be very visible, but in some way the big fights are never really fought (or better stated have not been fought for a long time). They have shown success stories every year, but landmark achievements have been absent for some time. Let’s get back to the initial story, but do not forget this part as it has bearing.

You see, the next part is slightly more entertaining. That tends to be the case whenever the honourable Jeremy Corbyn gets involved. Apart from the fashion comments we have seen in the last two days. The actual issue is his choice to get to the CND-rally, which is not a bad thing, but in light of timing, he decides to walk away from the national Labour campaign day, where he would be persuading voters to back Britain’s membership of the EU. This leaves to mind, is this a first inkling that even labour expects Brexit to become a reality? Whether that is true or not, this event has a direct bearing on the British population within this year, the CND rally has been going on for decades, so there would be another one next year. There is no other story beyond that. When you lead the labour party, it must be about the party, not about temporary ideology, because the CND is temporary at best and all ideological. I state that because there is no doubt that the UK would never instigate it, it would however respond if need be. Jeremy knows this (or he should not run the labour party). In all this I accept and understand that this is an option to rub elbows with people like SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon, Plaid Cymru’s Leanne Wood and Caroline Lucas of the Green Party. Yes, those meetings make perfect sense, yet that means that none of them are really there for a CND rally. That is not an accusation, it is not wrong, but it leads to questions; questions that can slow down any election for a massive amount.

Two events all with issues of relevance, relevance from within those people from their point of view.

Now we take another gander, a gander towards the path of Saudi Arabia. Most people refuse to understand (read: accept) two elements. The first is that Saudi Arabia is a sovereign nation, a nation founded in 1932 by the House of Saud. The most important part here is that this is a Muslim nation, it is a nation of laws, in their case it was the Consultative Assembly of Saudi Arabia in 1924 when King Abdul-Aziz made Shura a foundation of his government in order to fulfil the divine order by applying Shariah (Islamic Jurisprudence) and Shura as parts of it. So, we have a clear given, a monarchy that lives by Muslim rule of law, Shariah law. We might not comprehend, understand it or even accept it. But in the Nation of Saudi Arabia it has forever been law. I still do not understand how people go about trying to enforce their rules upon others. You see, when I hear these ‘moralists’ speak on how Sharia Law is so ‘barbaric’, they in equal measure forget that their own governments abandoned them as markets collapsed twice since 2004, no decent part of the involved parties went to prison and absolutely no laws were properly instigated and enforced against greed and in that regard, the least said about flawed corporate tax laws the better. In light of all this consider another fact that applies to the Consultative Assembly of Saudi Arabia, the previous assembly had 70% of its members with a PhD, 49% got their degree in the US and 20% from a University in Europe. So this is a group highly educated. Initially, going back to the beginning, the council was entrusted with drafting the basic laws for the administration of the country. Which is interesting as the US started in a similar way, a nation of laws under god (their Christian version). When we see the Shura council, we see in Article one “and following His Messenger Peace Be Upon Him (PBUH) in consulting his Companions, and urging the (Muslim) Nation to engage in consultation. The Shura council shall be established to exercise the tasks entrusted to it, according to this Law and the Basic Law of Governance while adhering to Quran and the Path (Sunnah) of his Messenger (PBUH), maintaining brotherly ties and cooperating unto righteousness and piety“, so as others judge the actions of Saudi Arabia, ask yourself, in the last 5 years alone, how many instances from large corporations and government have we seen, where ‘maintaining brotherly ties and cooperating unto righteousness and piety‘ were never part of any consideration? You only have to look at your pension plan, healthcare or deficits to see that ‘brotherly‘ is nowhere to be found.

This too is relevant to the entirety of the situation when we return to the honourable Jeremy Corbyn. Several sources stated “Jeremy Corbyn has called on David Cameron to suspend arms sales to Saudi Arabia after a United Nations report found the Saudi-led coalition in Yemen had “conducted airstrikes targeting civilians”“, based on what evidence would be my first question (not stating the validity of the UN), apart from that, Corbyn has a direct responsibility, you see, the UK had coffers that need to be filled, the UK has product that can be sold. We have seen how UK Labour was willing to spend money they never had, leaving the UK in massive debt. The last thing he should do is call for a suspension. Let me explain that part.

  1. This arms deal is not with some organisation like Hezbollah, it is a legitimate sovereign government of an established nation. The UK has every right to sell products to this nation.
  2. Whenever the west gets directly involved in any Middle Eastern event, it becomes a massive mess, in all this after half a decade, the west has done next to nothing regarding Syria, Europe has to deal with massive waves of refugees and there is no end in sight. Amnesty International knows this. They also know that Sharia Law is another matter, it is not for them to judge; it is for them to accept that the sovereign nation of Saudi Arabia has every right to keep their own set of laws.
  3. Hezbollah and other players in Yemen are not part of an established government, they overthrew governments and the mess that followed has been ongoing ever since. In that light, there are too many question marks in too many places.

I believe that any Middle Eastern issue should be resolved by the Middle Eastern nations themselves. With escalation on the south border and firing of missiles into Saudi Arabia, they have every rights to protect themselves in any way they need to. That is also part of the equation. In that regard Islam 101 gives us two parts “Fight against those who fight against you in the way of Allah, but do not transgress, for Allah does not love transgressors” as well as “Kill them whenever you confront them and drive them out from where they drove you out. (For though killing is sinful) wrongful persecution is even worse than killing. Do not fight against them near the Holy Mosque unless they fight against you; but if they fight against you kill them, for that is the reward of such unbelievers“. The next part is also from the Quran, but I am not sure whether this is Sharia: “The Quran sanctions violence to counter violence. If one studies history of Arab tribes before Islam and fierce fighting they indulged in one would be convinced that the philosophy of passive resistance would not have worked in that environment“. This is the kicker, we see that passive resistance was not a solution, because of the mess that Arab spring left the Middle East. In that Saudi Arabia has a right to counter its attacks, which means that we do not get to say too much on how a sovereign state defends itself. In addition, with the amount of ‘additional’ groups in Yemen, can we be certain who is who there?

But do not fear, Smith is here!

You see, I am very willing to join BAE and become ‘the’ sales person there (I know a person who would join me, so a team of 2 could be achieved), I will take a decent sales income and of course the 3.75% bonus on surplus sales and 3.25% bonus on sales targets reached. I reckon that I can sell the Eurofighter Typhoon military planes, with consultancy, training and guidance. In addition, I will be happy to provide for ammunition and ordnance. As stated, we Commonwealth nations need to stick together and I am happy to aid in the support and consultancy of those jets.

This now gets us to the final part ‘an arms embargo on the country over its bombardment of Yemen‘. What data is there? What evidence is there? We know for a fact that Hezbollah is there, that the Iranians are all over this, which is interesting as they are supporting the party overthrowing the legitimate government. So is there more? Is this perhaps an organised annexing of Yemen for Iran? The elements that gives value to that are indeed in play, whether this is a factual interpretation is not clear, too much data is not available to me, as well as too much time has passed from the start of all this.

And the final part in all this is “The vote does not force EU member states to comply“, which makes the EU a lame duck organisation. All that time and all these events for something that holds no real value. Now let’s take the headcount for a second. Oliver Sprague, a civilian with no political power, a person who leads by instigating those who have power and only in events where it is beneficial to those people could something possibly happen (not in this case though). Jeremy Corbyn, a political headpiece, but not one that is currently in office, he is merely in opposition and as such he is about visibility and branding himself (politically plugging is also a term that applies in this case). These two non-deciders are opposing a nation that needs commerce that needs to export as many of their products as possible.

In the defence of the two non-deciders I must add, from our values, we might have issues and it is nice that the UN is also about values, yet in all this, apart from condemnation there has been very little against terrorist elements. Of all the condemnations we have seen since Syria has a little issue in 2011, how much actions have been taken and for how many millions of Syrians has it been too late? Too many speakers for inactions, too little actions on economy and actual actions on the HRA (like the little addendum to article three I mentioned earlier).

So within the title of relevance seems to apply to too many people, it includes me as well, for the mere reason that my blog has no effect on the actions of the UK Foreign Office. It is just my view on the matter, like it was the view of Oliver Sprague, Jeremy Corbyn and the EU parliament. We are all simply non-deciders. The deciders are the currently elected UK government headed by David Cameron as well as the Monarchy of Saudi Arabia, under King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud. They both get to look at the ‘toothless’ response from the EU parliament, who might be entering their final sitting soon enough.

Our voices might sound nice, our words might read nice, but neither bring food to the table, which is the concern of the Conservative Party, one that they are actually addressing.

 

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