Tag Archives: Bill O’Reilly

Screwed either way

Some will remember James Comey, at present former Director of the FBI. In addition, we need to remember on how during the final parts of the election Hillary Clinton came under investigations regarding her handling of certain matters as Secretary of State. In my mind her chances went out the window as she had bungled the Benghazi affair in the most stupid way possible. From my point of view it could have gotten her at least a million extra votes if she had done that thing right. In that Case, the 16 votes for Michigan might have been Democratic, in addition, the 29 votes for Florida and 10 for Wisconsin could have sealed the deal as the differences were really low, no guarantee, but the limping to the finish line as some newspapers reported imply that those three would have been up for grabs at that point. Would it have been enough. Was James Comey the trigger that made it falter? It would be too speculative to say ‘Yes!’

Consider the extremely hostile environment of the US and their need to be ‘by the book’ to do it according to whatever rules they decide. The fact that Hillary Clinton did office work via private email and servers and then suddenly the materials cannot be produced. This means that she gets to do government work off the books, with every possibility to feed her personal needs. I am not saying she did, I am saying she could have done that and there will be no evidence to help prove it. My issue was with the Benghazi situation. Where we see: ‘State Department officials were later criticized for denying requests for additional security at the consulate prior to the attack. In her role as Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton subsequently took responsibility for the security lapses‘, which was almost the brunt of it, the fact that certain parties were not upfront about the issue and it took Freedom Of Information Act requests by the Republican National Committee to truly get things going publicly. From CNN and Politico we learn “a lack of cooperation from Obama administration officials and Secretary Clinton for the lack of progress“, certain parties were dragging their heels as the spokesperson had to admit that they were pretty much clueless on the situation, that level of ignorance got an US ambassador killed. It might have blown over, but with the death of an Ambassador it was no longer an option as the world would be watching. This issue, even as Clinton took the blame towards herself, would not clear her. She failed a position of high office and as such giving her an even higher position was a bit of a no-no. Consider that the request for additional security was denied, the next time around it could impact the security of a nation. The entire terrorist push, the billions on security are now the anchor that no party can ignore. Stating that there will be no danger could start the second civil war in the US as the intelligence and security services have been spending billions meant for welfare and education. In this we now see the issue that was brought to light later as “classified information ended up on the laptop of the disgraced former congressman Anthony Weiner“, now we get “Mr. Comey had told the Senate Judiciary Committee that during the F.B.I.’s investigation into Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server while secretary of state, officers uncovered evidence that Mrs. Clinton’s aide, Huma Abedin, had “forwarded hundreds and thousands of emails, some of which contain classified information” to Mr. Weiner, her husband“, so an unqualified person forwarded from a private server mails to people who had no business getting the information. This is how nations are put into danger, this is how National Security falters. In this people want to protect the Clintons from being utter dicks in negating the need for security. In addition, the NY Times gives us the quote (at https://www.nytimes.com/2017/05/09/us/politics/comey-clinton-emails-testimony.html) “Our investigation determined that Ms. Abedin commonly forwarded emails to others who would print documents for her,” Gregory A. Brower, the assistant director in the F.B.I.’s Office of Congressional Affairs, wrote in a letter to the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, Senator Charles E. Grassley of Iowa“, so not only is she stupid, she is commonly stupid? What other information went innocuously to indirect receivers at for example, Wall Street, or a friend in financial hardship? James Comey did what was requested from him as the news has shown in several times that House republicans requested the probe and now a Republican fires Comey for doing so.

The Guardian (at https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2017/may/09/james-comey-fbi-fired-donald-trump), gives us: “Clinton partly blamed Comey’s letter in late October notifying Congress that the FBI was studying the emails on the laptop, for costing her the presidential election”, which sounds nice from her side, but when we realise that she allowed in principle for hundreds of classified mails to go unchecked via a third party to another person who should have no access at all. The fact that she is not in prison for gross negligence, or even on charges much worse is for her the smallest blessing in disguise”.

I will admit that there are issues on the Comey side too, yet again, when we realise that this was all in a timed situation during the running of the presidential election, and timed by republicans, there is one part that seems to stand out, as I see it, for the next 8 years, the republicans will not get any assistance that is a letter outside of the official brief request. The republicans have thrown away any options for small favours. Yet perhaps that might be their game, because as more and more people realise the dangers of the Financial Choice Act, it might be that James Comey was too much of an unknown straight shooter according to Wall Street. I wonder what friend of Wall Street will get to be appointed next. You think that my speculation is wrong? Perhaps it is, I just find it a little weird that a person who did his job in weird times, at request of the republicans, gets fired by that same group. Perhaps President Trump is merely throwing a fictive olive branch at the democrats, perhaps and more likely he was being misinformed by someone really liking someone else to be in that place. In my view there are issues on both sides, yet the direct clarity is that there has been a proven case that former Presidential runner Hillary Clinton was stupid in the way she did things and more stupid having an aide that had no office setup to properly print things, as well as knowingly share classified information with third parties. That part only came to light as the 52-year-old congressman decided to do some sexting with a 15 year old. Without that, it might not have come to light. The issue then becomes, who else, who should not be receiving any of it, ended up with classified information, who else came with: ‘shall I print that out for you?’ In this, the one support against the Wall Street Journal would be the quote “His probe of the former Secretary of State’s private email server is looking more like a kid-glove exercise with each new revelation“, which might not be incorrect, yet the election was in full swing, there was an issue that could constitute electoral fraud, which would be a big no-no to a lawyer like James Comey. He was pushed by the republicans in a hard place with no real solution. Yet in all this none of the papers stated at the headline the one part that mattered and remains unstated too often: ‘Hillary Clinton did this to herself!

There is one remaining side which we get from loyal republican Bill O’Reilly. He is illuminating it all without using the speculation I use (I am a blogger after all), we see: “Now, if you are Comey, you are basically taking copies of all your files, because if there is something wrong here – by wrong I mean, if Comey was doing his job, and now is fired because he was doing his job – Comey has got to get that out”, and there is more at https://www.billoreilly.com/b/OReilly-from-his-car-on-the-Firing-of-FBI-Director-James-Comey/662156856740165995.html. The issue is seen not by just me, but by several people, some of them scrutinising the FBI even more than I ever would, they state ‘Comey is fired because he was doing his job’, which is to many of us a real no-no, that whilst the Clinton gang goes on making loads of coin. The injustice is slightly more than I can stomach. So, as such I feel correct in my speculation, this was not about the Clinton mails, this is about making an FBI shake up for what comes next. It is done now because one additional quality win makes Comey almost untouchable and at that point too many people on the hill (that famous one in Washington DC) will ask a few more questions on both sides of the political isle. That is the part they have no worry about when the next one in the hot seat gets given the hot potato no one wants. It is a stretch on my side, I agree to that, yet with the loud noises that the Financial Choice Act is making and with groups and strong people in high places are now asking loudly what is wrong with the Republicans enabling Wall Street to this agree. As we see that consumers will lose more rights to defend themselves in these matters, having an FBI director with a strong moral compass is not something that the White House or the Senate might be comfortable with. I might be wrong here, and I likely am. Yet when you get fired for doing your job, more questions should be asked, especially as it is the position where one person has a goal to keep its citizens safe from several dangers. I hope you got that much at least.

 

Advertisements

Leave a comment

Filed under IT, Law, Military, Politics

We get it, but we don’t

There are times when we love to see the big boys getting sued, yet this is not that time. When I saw the Guardian (at https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2017/jan/03/apple-lawsuit-facetime-car-crash-iphone-patent), I had to wonder whether I had to laugh out loud, or just let my head hang down and shake it slowly. I get it, when a bad thing overcomes you and your family, the one you sue is the one who has the cash to settle or pay largely (read: deep pockets). That part I learned in my first week of Torts, so the fact that a couple goes for Apple makes sense, yet it does not. You see, in this global community there are these pesky things called ‘traffic laws’, so to make a point I decided to take a look at the traffic laws of California and that was a trip so psychedelic, that no amount of mushrooms could ever equal it. It all started with the California Driver Handbook (at https://www.dmv.ca.gov/web/eng_pdf/dl600.pdf).

I was off to a great start, because on page 21 we see ‘distracted driving‘ with “Anything that prevents you from operating your vehicle is a distraction” and it mentions ‘Visual-Eyes off the road‘ and ‘Cognitive-Mind of the road‘, so it seems that there was a good start. Then on page 86 we see the things that you must not do, which states ‘Do not operate a cell-phone without the use of a hands-free device‘ as well as ‘Do not drive a motor vehicle whilst using a wireless Communication device to write, send or read text-based communications‘ as well as ‘do not drive a vehicle equipped with a video monitor, if the monitor is visible to the driver and displays anything other than vehicle information‘. So, I saw the ground pretty much fall away from me whilst I realised that the first mention was ‘Do not smoke at any time when a minor is in the vehicle. You can be fined up to $100‘. Is this for real? Smoking is fined, yet the more hazardous issues are not dealt with? I cried wolf almost too soon. The DMV (at https://www.dmv.com/distracted-driving-penalties) gives us for California: $20, so we now know that we can plan for the accidental execution of ex-wives, people we do not like and people with a price on their head, because California has decided that this act of ‘gross’ negligence carries a fine of $20, or perhaps $40, because it could be proven that both visual and cognitive were transgressed upon. We just need to look really really sad, remorseful and get a great lawyer. If you have any such plans, after the deed is done in for example San Francisco, you should call Chris Dolan of the Dolan Law Firm (at https://dolanlawfirm.com/), they might be able to help you all the way avoiding jail.

So, as some places take distracted driving serious, there is a clear indication that plenty of states do not. This is upsetting in a few ways as the level of distracted driving (video chatting whilst driving) amounts to nothing less than manslaughter. Now the California Penal Code gives us Penal Code 192(a) voluntary manslaughter and Penal Code 192(b), involuntary manslaughter. The second one is set apart as it does not require intent to kill. I thought that we were in the clear with voluntary manslaughter as there is the option of vehicular manslaughter. Although here we see the needed:

A. in an unlawful way (not amounting to a felony), with or without gross negligence;
B. during the commission of a lawful act which might produce death in an unlawful manner, or
C. knowingly causes the accident for financial gain (which is also a violation of California’s automobile insurance fraud laws).

Now part c seems not to be the case. In my fictive example the prosecutor would require proof. Good luck getting that part from my banks in Riyadh! Hah!

Yet part A and part B are still filled at present. The issue is that distracted driving is not said to be a felony or unlawful. In that regard video chat driving is gross negligence through common sense, yet the California driving rules and the DMV do not state it as such (as far as I can tell at present) and as such someone’s 5 year old little daughter ended up with a dead one, for the fine (as currently stated in the DMV penalties list) no larger than the price of merely 4 MacDonald happy meals? How screwed up does that sound? The fact that the DMV could have clearly set in motion the change that caught with more than one element of distracted driver means an automatic suspension of the driver’s license for no less than 5 years as well as setting the bar towards a felony and not keep it at a misdemeanour, an act that would clearly be turning faces real quick. As minors and adults seem to worship their cars and their needs to drive somewhere, setting that change in motion could have resulted in a living child, very likely loads of non-dead individuals because of acts of utter stupidity. The fact that the DMV was very willing to add statistics to the drivers guide shows that this is a massive amount of lives that could be saved.

Let’s face it, in the world of common sense, video chatting whilst driving seems to be one of the more stupid acts to pursue. It is at the end that I disagree with Nora Freeman Engstrom, a Stanford law professor, who states “Apple’s inaction in the face of that knowledge may not trigger liability here. But it may well expose Apple to liability down the road”, in that I disagree as the pressure should have been on the irresponsible driver from the very start and the driving laws should have been adjusted as such for a long time. It is time to set the blame where it should have been, with the driver!

Now, we all understand that the personal injury lawyers tend to have a go at those with the deeper pockets, yet how fair is that? Actually, fairness does not come into question, the law was already clear on distracted driving, it just needs to become a little more clear and let those relying on distracted driving either have a really good insurance, or let them feel the sting of prison when harm comes to victims due to their negligent actions. In that we can agree that texting, video chatting whilst operating a vehicle will always have a negative impact on the lives of people they hit.

The fact that this is not addressed on a national level is equally disturbing. When we see statistics like ‘Every year, about 421,000 people are injured in crashes that have involved a driver who was distracted in some way‘, whilst we see in addition, that ‘64% of all the road accidents in the United States had a cell phone involved‘, so any clear change will have an adverse effect on those two statistics. That seems clear enough a reason to make distracted driving a much harsher transgression with a penalty and fine large enough making it a felony. In that logic, the misconception that people can drive and text or video chat is a mismanaged perception that should be addressed as soon as possible, or better stated, with the statistics shown this should have been addressed years ago. So in that we do get that the parents want to lash out against the guilty parties, yet we don’t get that this is done, making guilty a party that had not implemented a patent, to be more precise a patent that might have gotten itself circumvented as well as the clarity that any usage in combination with driving is already defined as dangerous. The fact that the State of California regards this to be a $20 transgression makes the situation just sad and not really a valid guilt trip for Apple, Google or any other Android mobile smartphone brand.

You see, in itself, the article is not that important. So someone is suing Apple, la di da! Yet behind all the fun, frolic and charade is the hidden issue of responsibility. We seem to avoid responsibility, feign unawareness or advocate stupidity the difference in this case seems to be mere semantics depending on your point of view. There is a decent argument to be made that the law makers have been too lax, yet to what extent? To what extent can any nation continue when common sense is thrown out of the window? It is an equal valid view that not the law, but the person in situations can be the point of decision, yet when we decide to avoid that, we do get to spend life in jail, especially when our own negligence and lack of common sense gets other people killed. There is no ‘I’m sorry‘ and ‘I thought it was OK‘ or ‘It was not illegal‘, I especially like that part. Well, I got my in-laws killed, but it was not illegal, so have a nice day Justice! We can even argue whether killing a person we know is less punishable then killing a stranger, but that is a discussion for another day. What is very much the issue is that Moriah Modisette died because Garrett Wilhelm, of Gainesville thought that he could safely drive a car on the interstate at 65 Mph whilst using FaceTime. Yet, this did not happen in Santa Clara, it happened in Texas on interstate 35W, near mile marker 81. Now we see a change, because Texas has harsher rules, and here we see “Denton bans texting and driving on city streets, but the city ordinance does not include the interstate“, so now we get a new ballgame, even as we see “Manslaughter is a second-degree felony in Texas and carries with it the possibility of up to a $10,000 fine and a prison sentence of at least two years, but no more than 20 years” yet the DMV states that distracted driving applies to Drivers younger than 18, which Garrett Wilhelm was not, so is it mere luck that he is up on a manslaughter charge? How come that death gets a different value, that stupidity is rewarded in some states? The fact that there are rules, regulations and city ordinances all giving a different value to this serious transgression. Now, as an Australian I accept that the US has different values and even though they too work on the premise of Common Law, doing so on a national level is not easy. Yet should this matter not have been dealt with more severe and on a national level? Especially when we see the statistics and a massive gap as to how the transgression and the implied consequence of the transgression holds up?

In case of Garrett Wilhelm, the trial date got set in the end to 26th September 2016, whilst the report of June stated that a request for continuance is to be expected, so over two years later there is still no justice for Moriah Modisette which would drive any parent insane with grief, rage, bitterness and sadness. All these emotions at the same time would be devastating. It still is not fair to have a go at the mobile maker, but that is only my personal view.

Perhaps it is time for someone like Bill O’Reilly to champion another law, just like he did with Jessica’s Law. Perhaps the US needs a Moriah Law, a law that makes the use of any mobile, other than hand free voice calling whilst driving a car a felony and it would be a law that covers all if the US, every state, regardless whether it is in the city or not. They shouldn’t need a law like this, yet the acts of Garrett Wilhelm (who is not the only one mind you) clearly state other whiles.

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Law, Media, Politics

As messages pass by

There has been a lot of throwing regarding e-mails in the 11th hour of the campaign. As elections are officially about to start, the need to get them out in favour of the Republican side seems to be clear. Yet, in all this there is an equal worry why the Democrats have let this get so out of hand.

For those who do not keep up to date with the daily need of any Clinton e-mail, let’s mull this over, so that the sequential parts will be a lot easier to understand. For the most, part of the history (at http://www.cnbc.com/2016/10/29/the-history-of-the-clinton-email-controversy.html) will give you part of the goods, but it is still a little short.

You see, this all goes back to 2012, when the Islamic militant group Ansar al-Sharia started a coordinated attack against two US government facilities in Benghazi, Libya. It resulted in the deaths of U.S. Ambassador to Libya J. Christopher Stevens and U.S. Foreign Service Information Management Officer Sean Smith. It was the New York Daily News that reported on State Department officials who were criticized for denying requests for additional security at the consulate prior to the attack. In her role as Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton subsequently took responsibility for the security lapses. So, that should have been the end of it, should it not? The basic premise is that mistakes will happen, it is really not great when lives are lost, but it is a danger many foreign dignitaries in conflict places face.

Although, at this point, one valid question becomes debatable: ‘Should any elected official making such a lapse of security be regarded as a possible president of the United States?’

I am merely phrasing the question, it is not an answer pushing you into the direction of the Yes or No answer. What followed was a media rush towards the semantics of ‘Act of Terror‘ versus ‘Act of Terrorism‘. I am calling this an issue of semantics as in the end Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens ended up being equally dead, so in that regard there was no impact. Just as many have seen, but perhaps not realised that syndicated columnist Charles Krauthammer claimed that a State Department e-mail, which passed along a report from Embassy Tripoli that Ansar al-Sharia had claimed responsibility for the attack on Facebook and Twitter was evidence that the White House knew of terrorist connections to the attack almost immediately. Charles Krauthammer stated, “This is really a journalistic scandal. I mean, the fact there was not a word about any of this in the New York Times or the Washington Post today.” This comes from the 23rd October 2012. The issue now is that there are layers of issues not dealt with. Consider this part and also consider the Senate Hearing Response by Hillary Clinton “With all due respect, the fact is, we had four dead Americans! Was it because of a protest or was it because of guys out for a walk one night and decided they’d go kill some Americans?! What difference, at this point, does it make?!“, which is only part of the response, yet the response in the hours before the attack would have been important, especially as the movie linked to all this ‘Innocence of Muslims‘, a movie by an Egyptian born Coptic Christian, an anti-Islamic movie with the intent to denigrate Islam’s prophet, Muhammad. Was there really no clue that this would have repercussions? In addition, Anti-Islamic content had been added in post-production by dubbing, without the actors’ knowledge (source: Christian Science Monitor). What is interesting is that Sarah Abdurrahman states “If you watch closely, you can see that when the actors are reading parts of the script that do not contain Islam-specific language, the audio from the sound stage is used (the audio that was recorded as the actors were simultaneously being filmed). But anytime the actors are referring to something specific to the religion (the Prophet Muhammed, the Quran, etc.) the audio recorded during filming is replaced with a poorly executed post-production dub. And if you look EVEN closer, you can see that the actors’ mouths are saying something other than what the dub is saying.“, this is important because it clearly implies an attack on religious values, one that the Muslim community values above all others. Now we cannot expect that the internet is policed to a certain extent, yet in light of the trailer, was there really no one who asked ‘could this get out of hand?‘, whilst in the other direction, the fact that the trailer had been online for almost 50 days, were there no danger flags at all? So on a September 11th day, was there no perception at all that there could be a dangerous situation? In addition there was a PDF (at http://permanent.access.gpo.gov/gpo33519/Flashing%20Red-HSGAC%20Special%20Report%20final.pdf), where the Regional Security Officer in Libya compiled a list of 234 security incidents in Libya between June 2011 and July 2012, 50 of which took place in Benghazi.

  1. America and American interests were (regardless of reason) under direct terrorist attack.
  2. The State Department should have increased security on several levels
  3. It gives another view to the Senate hearing in light of certain facts (January 23rd 2013)
  4. The United States Senate Committee On Homeland Security And Governmental Affairs paper from December 2012 shows that additional security would have been essential.

Now, why is this so important during an election? For the most, we could call trivialise all this in regards to ‘administrative failure‘, which will happen, even as we all realise that lives were lost, it gives weight to the response that Hillary Clinton gave. As she stated “It is our job to figure out what happened and do everything we can to prevent it from ever happening again” as well as “The Intelligence Community has a process, I understand, going with the other committees to explain how these talking points came out”, which now makes the second one a killer to say the least.

This is now part of the problem!

You see, the email controversy is not just that mails were missing, it became publicly known that Hillary Clinton, as she served as the United States Secretary of State, had used her family’s private email server for official communications, instead of the State Department email accounts maintained on federal servers. So certain triggers could have been missed and an issue of reporting now exists. In addition, the mere notion that thousands of emails that would later be marked classified by the State Department retroactively had been on other servers is also a clear case for response. This now gets us to Bill O’Reilly (at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dCYma3zZf7U), who now informs us on two sides that matter. At 2:11 we see the ‘accountability of people in power‘, which is an issue at any given day, yet there might be a clear explanation, yet the implied issues as seen gives us that there has been a level of miscommunication going all the way to the Oval Office, which is now a really big issue. In that regard, the Clinton campaign is getting cut all over the place, in addition, at 4:16, there is now the implied issue that FBI director James Comey was either not aware or covered up the private email issues as they were missing from the summation of the case.

Now, after all the grief that FBI director James Comey is now receiving. In addition, Nevada Democrat Senator Harry Reid gives us ‘James Comey may have broken law‘, is that so Harry? The trouble with Harry is that he doesn’t seem to mention on how private email servers and not the State.gov servers were used. Can we all agree that this might be the bigger issue, for more than one reason? The fact that impeachment could be due to all or any crime that abuses office powers, we could surmise that there is an optional case of perjury. If proven, we can avoid the entire election. That is not, as Harry Reid states ‘interference in an election‘, but the investigation of possible criminal acts. On one side, if this goes up after the elections and should Hillary Clinton win, than it is a first in history that both members of a family, both in a position of presidential powers gets impeached for ‘Perjury and obstruction of justice’, which is at his mere age of 76 still an interesting event to personally witness. Harry gets enthusiastic in his speech as given on the Huffington Post. You see he states “letting her GOP opponent get away with breaking the law“, which is interesting as the system does not seem to make a criminal ineligible for running for office. It mentions that you need to be an American and once elected you cannot run a second time for president (re-election does not apply), so a one term president cannot be a president again. When we look at the Constitution, Article 2, we get an interesting side. Section 4 gives us: “The President, Vice President and all civil officers of the United States, shall be removed from office on impeachment for, and conviction of, treason, bribery, or other high crimes and misdemeanours“, this implies that a felon can legally become president of the United States, practically that is a lot less certain.

So here we get the trouble with Harry. You see, until the election it is the premise of conviction, if Hillary Clinton gets prosecuted and convicted regarding the Benghazi mails after a successful election, she would be impeached. It is a possible and practical solution, but it isn’t likely and in addition initially James Comey made a notification of events. In light of the Washington Post (as well as the Guardian) we see “Their decision partly reflected the institutional power of the FBI director, Comey’s personality and the political realities they were facing, according to current and former Justice Officials. In this case, officials said Comey put the department in an untenable position by informing them that he was sending a letter to Congress because he had an obligation to lawmakers or they would feel misled“, is this separation of powers at its finest, or is this a mere loophole? We need to see this in contrast to another quote in the same article. Here we see: “At the July news conference, Comey announced that the FBI had completed its investigation of Clinton’s private email server while she was secretary of state. Comey said he was recommending to the Justice Department that Clinton not be charged, but he added that Clinton and her colleagues had been “extremely careless” in their handling of classified information.”” So it was after July that things escalated. The part that we see ‘when Harry met Hillary’ is that the path that is taken is odd to say the least. The mention by James Comey ‘in an unrelated case‘ as well as the fact that when this all happened Hillary Clinton should have had a cleaning pass on a very high level. That never happened, for the most it is an actual consideration exactly HOW Anthony Weiner got these mails to say the least. Consider that he left congress in June 2011, a little more than two months before it all happened. So how and exactly why was he kept in the loop? If the facts are correct, we are now facing a case where Hillary Clinton mailed classified materials to an outsider. A part that leads to even more questions when we see “FBI director James Comey revealed the existence of the emails, which law-enforcement sources said were linked to Weiner’s estranged wife, top Clinton aide Huma Abedin“, which now gets the Clintons in even more hot water. It came from a private server, it went to the top aide and she was using the laptop of resigned congressman Anthony Weiner, now it seems that the mails were meant for his wife, did she not have her own laptop (at http://www.cnbc.com/2016/10/30/fbi-obtains-warrant-for-newly-discovered-emails-in-clinton-probe–as-reid-accuses-comey-of-hatch-act-violation.html)?

From my view, the fact that classified materials went via unqualified sources to a device owned by a person who’s is no longer in office. It seems that Harry is spinning his way through legal mentions whilst ignoring transgressions of classified communications. So, Harry needs to be careful on whacking the paint brush around. In the end, there is of course a chance that it will influence the election, but we could in equal margins consider that the Clintons, due to careless ignoring mails in the field, the entire mess ended up hurting themselves again.

It is because the clarity of what actually happened is out there is missing, is exactly why this is now coming to blows now. As for the mention of ‘Reid Accuses Comey of Hatch Act Violation‘, we should in equal measure consider that this is not an act where we see ‘political activity’, this is an FBI director who is now looking into possible criminal negligence and the fact that classified materials were on a laptop not owned for the person who the intended mail was, in addition, it belonged to a person no longer in office, so those conditions could well spell more mess as former Hillary Clinton chief of staff Cheryl Mills and another top aide had “some” classified material on laptops they turned over to the bureau in its probe of Clinton’s private server use as secretary of state. Through her own statements, we saw that she was unaware what classified meant, she did not use the proper protocols on sending classified, secret and more than 20 top secret emails. So as we see Senator Harry Reid go all up in arms, we need to consider one additional quote from the Washington Post (at https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/comey-gives-in-to-shameful-partisanship/2016/10/30/c31c714a-9ed8-11e6-8d63-3e0a660f1f04_story.html). “The evidence suggests that FBI Director James B. Comey is a decent man. The evidence also suggests that he has been intimidated by pressure from Republicans in Congress whose interest is not in justice but in destroying Hillary Clinton“, that seems to be the driving force here. It is my personal belief that this is what happened and this is why the initial mail was so vague. If I resort to calling a spade a spade then I would state: “Yo Harry, we know that you are stupid, but you are not stupid. You know what I am saying?” Instead of lashing out to the Republicans in congress, instead of looking why the massive level of ignorance from a former Secretary of State wasn’t properly cleaned up the moment it was a clear visibility issue, we will get to the direct consequence of dropping the ball on the bottom of the 9th when you are down 4 points and this is the last play. It could cost you the game and that is exactly what could happen at this point. When you trace all this information back you get to the clear understanding that WikiLeaks doesn’t need to find whistle-blowers, with the cyber negligence we see at present, Congress could in theory be supplying WikiLeaks with Top Secret information for decades to come (dramatically over-sized speculation). Perhaps Congress could take a moment to send an unclassified email to Maj Gen William T. Lord (you know the dude in charge of the Air Force Cyber Units) requesting a highly needed presentation on ‘Common Cyber Sense‘, it seems that a sizeable population on Capitol Hill is in dire need of one. #JustSaying

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Media, Military, Politics

How to blame an inanimate object.

Something happened in Oregon. For many it will be horrific, to some it has no impact, to others it has an emotional impact. The news at CNN (at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yrYkblNgs_U) is all about the breaking news. For Umpqua Community College it will be a dark page in their history. The news is giving all levels of speculation, they are not doing it in an irresponsible way, because they are factors to be considered, but the news diverts on several occasions towards ‘other speculated’ events and dangers. It stopped being news after 20 seconds. It was all about (as I see it) on prolonging the event. Moving from breaking news snippet to breaking news snippet. We can argue on the value here, but there is no issue with that approach, it is a choice. In the case of John F. Kennedy Jr, when on July 16, 1999 his plane crashed into the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts the issue was different. For 45 minutes we saw a sailor on the back of a deck. Nearly every newscast (CNN, Fox, CNBC et al) were all zooming in on that same sailor whilst I was at Dulles Airport waiting for my flight. Now that constitutes the pinnacle of bad newscasts, this is not, but there is an issue. You see, as emotions rise in that instance, we all were confronted with 10 dead, 20 wounded and the initial shooter has been apprehended. Something I could have stated in under a minute. Yet, it is not about this newscast, what happened afterwards becomes the issue. An interesting side is shown at EpicTimes.com by Jon Justice (at http://www.epictimes.com/jonjustice/2015/10/ucc-mass-shooting-blaming-the-gun-has-begun/).

This is not the first event and it will not be the last event either. The quote ‘Jon was frustrated to see so many people on social networks blame the NRA and call for more gun control‘ starts it of nicely. You see, guns do not kill people. People kill people. In addition we see the quote: “We need to get over this idea that you can put up a “Gun Free Zone” sign and it will stop the violence”, which is more than just bringing it to a point.

His podcast (also in the webpage) is emotional and seems to strike out to people trying to score political points towards gun at the expense of 13 cadavers. Yes, this sounds extremely crude, which it is. People ignore again and again that the gun culture is not the killing factor, the killing comes from criminals and monsters who seem to score names by going after children. Changes are needed and gun control has never and will never be the solution. You see, when guns fall away, we get blunt objects, knives and other devices that can end lives. Jon Justice starts to blame social media and 20 hours news a day. Jon Justice brings up a very interesting side. Social media and the option of notoriety is a growing concern, in all this guns are not even close to the largest dangers. Should we globally ban Facebook? In 2013 32,719 people died in a car accident. So, why is there no car control, you see nearly all the involved players had a driver’s license? Why are people not banned from cars FOR LIFE? In addition Jon brings up the discipline required for guns. Weirdly enough is that those who legally obtained a gun, some of these what people tend to call Gun Nuts, they tend to revere their gun. They take as many precautions towards gun safety and their weapon as a mother would towards their child. His speech takes a turn that people should observe. His consideration regarding 14 kills in Chicago, which has one of the strongest control laws. How many people spoke out in that regard? Those people taking a chance on political points thanks to the deceased from Umpqua Community College is appalling. Jon Justice clearly has a point.

Yet I started with the amendments. There was reasoning here. You see, the US constitution starts with the three amendments that safeguard liberties. To appease the anti-federalists personal freedoms were guaranteed in the Bill of Rights, whilst in addition limiting the government’s power. Yet, people forget that changing one is lowering the defence of all. I will go one step further, if the people lose the rights to bear arms, we should also change the first amendment where we state that the freedom of speech exists, yet after the editing the people can hold anyone liable for that what they print or speak. This should be great for Hollywood and their residents. Many people will rejoice that glamour press could be held accountable for their innuendo. They are connect because the first three rights were about the people. The first is: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances

You see, people seem to attack the second amendment, which was one of three set towards the safeguards of liberty.

The American second Amendment states: “A well-regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a Free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed“. This links to the Heritage guide to the Constitution (at http://www.heritage.org/constitution#!/amendments/1/essays/140/freedom-of-speech-and-of-the-press). The interesting quote is “The debates in the First Congress, which proposed the Bill of Rights, are brief and unilluminating. Early state constitutions generally included similar provisions, but there is no record of detailed debate about what those state provisions meant“, is that not interesting? Is the meaning and the debate regarding not one of the highest importance? The 1st Continental Congress in 1774 showed the following: “The last right we shall mention regards the freedom of the press. The importance of this consists, besides the advancement of truth, science, morality, and arts in general, in its diffusion of liberal sentiments on the administration of Government, its ready communication of thoughts between subjects, and its consequential promotion of union among them, whereby oppressive officers are shamed or intimidated into more honourable and just modes of conducting affairs” In this light, why do we not hold the press accountable? ‘The advancement of morality‘, is that not part that must be addressed? When we consider the Hacking scandal in the UK that involved the Murdoch Business, on June 3rd 2015 (at http://www.theage.com.au/comment/hacking-scandal-has-not-changed-murdoch-20150601-ghekss.html), we see the following two quotes: “New evidence … has led the Metropolitan Police to believe that this was unlikely to have been correct … the newspaper is unlikely to have been responsible for the deletion of a set of voicemails from the phone that caused her parents to have false hopes that she was alive“, which was regarding the deleted messages from Milly Dowler, which gave the parents the false hope that she was still alive. The next one was “I was taken aback when Davies told me, in a roomful of students and media buffs, that the premise of my question was wrong (and by implication, therefore, his story wasn’t). The Metropolitan Police, he said, had provided Lord Justice Leveson with a detailed report shortly after The Guardian’s correction was published. It showed there was a great deal of uncertainty about who had deleted what, and when. Naturally, Davies added, no one had reported this“, yet this remains linked to the issue that the press had been ignoring personal freedoms and blatantly hack the device of a person without consent. Yet in the end, the press did a double take on false ‘humility’ by promising to do better, an approach that was never met and blatant false allegations returned to be the norm less than 4 weeks after the end of the Leveson report considerations. So in all this, if people want control of something that is not to blame, in equal measure to ‘nurture’ a communion that seems to live on the needed premise of ‘Flight MH370 was crashed into the Indian Ocean in an apparent suicide mission‘, a statement that had no bearing as no evidence existed not at that point and no evidence existed a long time after that, even today 18 months later there still is no evidence of any kind that this was a suicide mission.

Marlin1881Now the second amendment: “A well-regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a Free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed“, this is the kicker! The fact that it is not infringed is nothing more than the ability to bear arms. Considered the image to the left.

 

Do you think that this is the weapon made by or owned by anyone who is about killing people? This is a work of art, plain and simple. The issue in Umpqua Community College is not plain and simple. The news gives us that the shooter was targeting Christians.

 

 

So is this person Chris Harper Mercer a mental health case or an anti-Christian extremist. You see, the speech from President Obama seems wrong on two counts. He stated ‘we do not have sufficient common sense gun safety laws‘, how wrong was he? You see, in the first case we can claim his speech should have been ‘Obamacare failed this young man, this young man who did not get the proper care and as a result people at Umpqua Community College paid for this failing with their life‘. In the other case the speech should have been ‘America is under attack, an extremist, under the guise of religious terminal segregation decided to attack Americans and the American way of life by killing future moulders of this great nation where freedom reigns‘. No, another speech was made and the gun, ‘the inanimate object’ got blamed.

The third one has no bearing on these events, yet this one is the last one that safeguards liberties in the US. The text: “No Soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of the Owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law“, which basically gives a new view to the British expression ‘my home is my castle‘ in the US. The first is over protected, the second is shunned and prosecuted, and the third gets ignored. All facts that brought forth what was once the greatest nation on earth as well as the champion of freedom. That last part America seems to think it still is, yet when we consider the victims of Umpqua Community College. Was freedom of speech guaranteed so that one person could kill many (an act that was done not through voicing a thought or opinion) or has the right to free speech been taken away from the victims, who had a Christian and legal right to speak out regarding what they thought would be right in their lives and in their community? We will never know, because the dead do not talk.

How can we get past this?

First of all, the following part comes from the Seattle Times, which has an interesting side (at http://www.seattletimes.com/nation-world/roseburg-attack-latest-in-growing-list-of-horrific-killings/), it states: “Oregon is one of seven states, either from state legislation or court rulings, with provisions allowing the carrying of concealed weapons on public post-secondary campuses, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. The other states are Colorado, Idaho, Kansas, Mississippi, Utah and Wisconsin.” So, there is a small side which does score points for President Obama, ‘common sense gun safety laws‘ is the issue in my view. You see, as I see it (oversimplifying issues as per usual), concealed weapons should not be allowed to anyone that is not part of the police, the military, governmental officials (members of the alphabet group) and cleared private security. It would not have made any difference today. But this fact should still be stated.

There is every option to stop the military from dropping the people who stood by them and let those getting close to retirement to become part of an education location security team, a group of people that is armed and is there to keep the students safe. They remain semi-military staff and are as such accountable for events, but I feel certain that whatever person, for whatever reason thinks that he will become famous, that person is a lot more likely to be the diminished towards a mere by-line ‘today an individual entered a campus armed with concealed weapons. Military protection was on site and none of the students became victim of this attack. The carcass of the transgressor will be disposed of shortly; his identity no longer matters‘. How long until these people regard a school not to be a target? How long until we acknowledge that anyone with a mental condition should not be allowed a firearm license? Will that stop the transgressor? No, that is extremely unlikely, but the presence of trained personnel on educational grounds will make it extremely certain that the loss of innocent victims will remain as low as possible. Consider the Columbine Massacre. April 20, 1999 from 11:19 a.m. until 12:08 p.m. An event where for almost an hour two people had access to a ‘shooting gallery’ causing the death of 12 people and wounding 21. Now consider another event. On 15 April 1912 a British Dinghy was lost at sea. It was called the Titanic (you may have heard of it). In 1914 the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) became in effect, a convention that is still in effect today. So, if sailors can get something this lasting done, how come that proper security in US schools is still not achieved 186 months after Columbine? The combined wars of the American Revolutionary War and the Northwest Indian War took less time to settle. The two costed the lives of 8044 in battle, since 1980 it is rumoured that only 297 people were killed, so perhaps if we get a few more casualties (like 8044 minus 297) things will actually change, as long as those pushing for change realise that blaming guns and trying to force gun control will never ever be a solution. The Titanic lost 1500 lives a number that outside a war would never have been fathomable in those days, so perhaps more deaths will push the American administration into action. I am however reluctant to consider that they show any wisdom in that regard. Guns and politicians react like a bull and a bright coloured blanket, with no option for any amount of fence. What people might forget is that the US military is cutting 40,000 troops (not of their own accord I imagine). Many of those now need to find jobs, which means that new pressures are about to hit the US job market, did no one consider the fact that many of these are exquisitely trained in keeping people safe? Is it such a jump to enlist these people within the Justice department as educational security (to avoid issues with the 1978 Posse Comitatus Act)?

In the end there is a case to be made that 40,000 departures are arranged because the US is so broke that it has exhausted all options and hiring these people in other capacities is no longer an option. Which is the consideration one gets at minus 18 trillion, so how has this administration as well as the previous Republican one done anything to keep places of education truly safe?

I’ll let you ponder these facts, but when you do, consider the words of Bill O’Reilly (at http://video.foxnews.com/v/4524976308001/the-mass-murder-in-oregon-/?intcmp=hpvid1#sp=show-clips), the fact that again there is a link to social media and the fact that the ‘claim’ was placed before the event took place. In my personal view an anti-Christian extremist would not have given ‘warning’, making this a ‘some form of mental health case’. There are unknowns and there are speculations. The statement that people were killed based on religion was made by someone who was in the classroom where it happened seems to be acceptable enough as quality reporters have gone with that fact.

So where is any solution to be found? Gun control will not lead to any solution (in the US) and amending the laws and regulations are equally pointless against transgressors like this.

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Law, Media, Military, Politics

To be deserted

I have seen the term more than once. I’ve heard people cry, whinge, rage and other emotional forms as they felt they had been deserted. This is fair enough, we all feel like this at times, sometimes with good reason, sometimes with reasons less so. In this case I am referring to the Guardian article (at http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/sep/18/islamic-state-video-isis-uk-hostage-propaganda-message-gunpoint). Initially it is about the quote “Well it’s true I am a prisoner. That I cannot deny. But seeing as I’ve been abandoned by my government and my fate now lies in the hands of Islamic State I have nothing to lose. Maybe I will live and maybe I will die, but I want to take this opportunity to convey some facts that you can verify. Facts that if you contemplate might help preserving lives

Let’s not beat around the bush. This man is a journalist, a photo journalist to be more precise. John Cantlie seems to be by all measures a decent man, even courageous. He went into a warzone to get the images the people seem to want to see, perhaps to please his station. It does not matter what label I give here, because it is about HIS reasons, and why HE did this. In the end, he entered a war zone and as such he became a casualty of war, yet this is not the war we used to know and the war we seemed to know. The entire Syrian debacle went from a ‘simple’ civil war and became a mess involving several parties and no clear solution. A mess that has chemical warfare, it included mass bombings on civilians and other elements. The conservative death count stands at 160,000, but I think that this number is off by a decent margin.

Getting back to John Cantlie, where several other questions seem to rise. Why was it ever a good idea to go into Syria? Don’t get me wrong, I admire the brazen way of this, the courage to go into the darkness to capture the unique moment, yet this is a warzone, with Al Qaeda all over the place. The short of it is that we do not and should never deal with terrorists. Yet, let it be clear that I do not speak out against John Cantlie. He drove his passions where it took him and in this case not to a nice place. I also agree with the following quote in the Guardian “When Haines was first shown in an Isis video in September, the Foreign Office urged the media to show restraint, and not to report that two other British citizens – Cantlie and Henning – were also being held ‘because we assess that coverage will increase the threat to their lives‘”, I agree, we should do whatever we can to lower the threat to these people and if there is an option to extract them using Seals or SAS, we definitely should, because the world needs people like John Cantlie who are willing to step into the darkness, whether it is for good or for less good reasons. In the end I believe that people willing to walk into a battle line will always be a greater asset to the world then those hiding behind the memo or the procedural issues.

Syria is a particularly nasty mess, not just because it is in its foundations a civil war. When parties decide to execute priests, a 75 year old Jesuit named Frans van der Lugt, who had been in Syria, giving aid to the sick, the hungry and the mentally ill for decades, a person doesn’t get to become more harmless to extremists then he was. So when we see these executions by Jabhat al-Nusra (AQIS), we wonder how to stop this. I think we are 3 years too late, now we are adding oil to the fire, which could escalate issues even further. You see, I think that America is making a new mistake, but they are not acting wrong! Let me explain! Headlines all over the world, with this one in the LA Times which is crucial ‘House approves Obama’s plan to help Syrian rebels fight Islamic State‘ (at http://www.latimes.com/world/middleeast/la-fg-congress-isis-20140918-story.html). It is my personal believe that America should not have done this.

My reasoning is twofold. First of all, there is every chance that Russia will sooner, not later take an opposite stance, which means we get additional escalations, second to all of this, there is a massive issue to what constitutes a ‘Syrian Rebel‘. This mix is no longer just Syrians, it includes Hamas, who might then use these weapons against Israel as well as Syrian rebels who are Al-Qaeda sympathisers, which means that they will end up being armed and pick up weapons for the Islamic state, so we do not have a win-win here either. It is my personal firm believe that these escalations should have been done by the other NATO members, without America and without the Netherlands.

I should explain this reasoning.

  1. America is in a bad state, to get America back as a superpower, it needs to cull internal greed, get its budget right and work off the 18,000 billion debts. Without America, there is no free west and as such everyone loses out.
  2. The Dutch should be left out if possible, not because of any lack; they can rip through steel with their teeth with the best of them, even on a Monday morning. The issue is with the Dutch photographer who was with John Cantlie initially. His name is Jeroen Oerlemans and he was released. The issue is not the Islamic State; the issue is that the foundation of Syria is still the base of a civil war. If we are to have ANY chance of diplomatic talks with Bashar al-Assad, then keeping one player out of this seems essential to me. We could always ask the Swedes or Swiss to intervene in these talks, but the release of the Dutch might have a relaxed stance in those talks.

This is all conjecture from my side, so feel free to completely disagree, yet consider that the only way to deal with ISIS is that at some point, parties will need to deal with Bashar al-Assad in some way and we need to keep any tactical avenue open. This is at the foundations of my thoughts here.

There is another side to all of this. There is another group we seem to forget about. There are a little over 3 million Syrian refugees, they are placed all over Lebanon, Jordan, Turkey, Iraq, Egypt, Algeria, Sweden, Bahrain, Germany, Libya and a few other nations. During all this time, these places had casualties too and they are not part of the 160,000 casualties, which is why I think the Syrian death toll is a lot higher. In all honesty, did you remember these refugees? I feel 100% certain ISIS has not forgotten them and if they are recruiting there we are in for one hell of a wake-up call soon enough. If there is any strength in number then these new ISIS members will be most likely in Lebanon, Jordan and Turkey, where they can up the ante of this entire theatre in the most expensive way imaginable, others might not be outspoken ISIS members, yet they are potential lone wolf terrorists. If some arrived in Sweden, France and Germany we already have a potential security problem on our hands.

Consider the following fact (at http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/04/24/us-libya-usa-security-idUSBREA3N0MW20140424), is Libya just dealing with Libyan extremism, or have some of the Syrian refugees taken up arms with ISIS? Now consider last week’s news ‘Egypt seeks broader alliance with U.S. over Libya‘ (at http://www.cbc.ca/news/world/egypt-seeks-broader-alliance-with-u-s-over-libya-1.2765468), again, is this just about Libya? Egypt has received well over 130,000 Syrian refugees and it is still dealing with the aftermath of the Muslim Brotherhood, who now has additional reasons to go extreme and with ISIS/ISIL willing to step into the limelight it can be safe to say we are not even close to the escalations we face.

Yet, here we see another version of ‘to be deserted‘, The Syrian people genuinely feel this way and some moved to ISIS, because when the Syrian mess started, they were not a factor. We face escalations in Jordan and we are seeing them in Libya and Egypt. The IB Times has additional info on this (at http://www.ibtimes.com/isis-training-egyptian-islamists-attack-security-forces-1680530), if this is truly true, then ISIS would have surrounded Israel to a massive degree, which could spark escalations sooner rather than later. The IB Times offers the following quote “A senior commander of the Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis, which has been active in the Sinai Peninsula of Egypt since 2011, told Reuters that Islamic State militants have been providing the group instructions and training on how to operate more effectively“. This means that the MFO could be in more direct danger. Less likely South camp, but the North camp near Al-Arish would give an open path to Rafah, which spells all kinds of escalations.

How true is all this?

I cannot tell as a fair deal is speculation based on second hand information, so it should be read with bias, yet if there is any value to it, it spells all kinds of trouble and keeping America out of it until we no longer can, seems essential. It is time for the other players (UK, Australia, Canada, Germany, France and Italy) to take the war to ISIS/ISIL now. Let’s not forget that America could still be a big help in setting up medical theatres for a still escalating Ebola havoc. The economist gives us a good view on the dangers on how it spreads and how America could be a true massive saviour (at http://www.economist.com/blogs/economist-explains/2014/08/economist-explains-10), not doing so, would the nations of Africa now feel that they were deserted?

In this blog we saw groups, all having reason to feel deserted and some definitely are not, yet some of those who were deserted for too long are now the most likely to switch sides to the dark side of insanity, is ISIS/ISIL anything less than that?

In the end there is one more view I need to offer. It comes from the Epic Times, more specifically the Jerry Doyle Show. I followed him on Facebook as a Babylon 5 fan, and only recently did I get to learn about his radio shows. He makes good points and he has a distinct view. I wonder how a televised debate between him and Bill O’Reilly would go, but this is not about any debate. In this case it is about a view Jerry aired (at http://www.epictimes.com/2014/09/congress-is-more-concerned-with-their-political-skins-than-the-lives-of-our-soldiers/), it was aired yesterday. In the article he states “Senator Harry Reid and Mitch McConnell are on the same page. The Senate is going to pick up the House government funding that authorizes arming the Syrian rebels and then head home for the election”, I think there is more to it than this. It is my personal believe that the agenda of Harry Reid and Mitch McConnell goes beyond that. Consider the other blogs, I have stated in several places how America’s freedom has been wasted away, giving power to large corporations and banks, to do as they will. Instead of acts that lower the actual debt, we have seen again and again how the debt kept on going up, this new ‘war’ and this pushes the American debt clearly over the edge of bankruptcy. My view is not wholly without merit. Consider the source Roll Call (at http://blogs.rollcall.com/218/continuing-resolution-isis-vote-breakdown), it gives a few views that many might not have considered. Is this truly about bi-partisanship, about polarisation or is it orchestration? I leave it to the people to make up their own mind, yet Matt Fullers view when he states “Neither vote was typical. Roughly equal numbers of Republicans and Democrats voted against both proposals. But there were some interesting trends hidden in both votes” make me wonder, was it just about trends?

So if this was about personal political gain, which other people got deserted in this process?

 

1 Comment

Filed under Finance, Media, Military, Politics

ISIS is coming to town!

Many have seen the news. Iraq is facing another brawl between the Sunni and Shiite. I do not proclaim any side, or even to know and comprehend the difference between the two beyond a limited and basic level. Is it required? There is an interesting article on it all in the Huffington Post (at http://www.huffingtonpost.com/howard-barbanel/the-current-incarnation-isis_b_5509461.html), whether this is something you can connect to is up to you. It is the last paragraph that gives me pause and even some worry.

Unfortunately, what’s needed is for the West to man-up and send in a multi-national force (Americans, Brits, French, Germans, etc.) and squash ISIS (which has ambitions of spreading their Islamic revolution to London and New York). It won’t take many planes or drones. ISIS has no air force. It won’t even take many troops to confront the several thousand ISIS fighters. What it will take is will power and if there’s absence of that we will be left only with the words of the 18th Century Irish philosopher Edmund Burke: ‘All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.

First of all, the US has no intent of getting involved (at present), more important should they? Remember the old issue when between the 2nd and the 4th of August 1990, Iraq took over Kuwait? It was condemned and after a while the US instigated Desert Storm and it was in that time between 17th January and 28th February 1991 that Sadam Hussein was removed from Kuwait. It was after this when at some point Bill O’Reilly made mention that at this stage, the hold of Sadam Hussein was weak and the Iraqi people could have overthrown their government if they truly wanted freedom. He was correct in a sense, but was he correct overall? I did not consider that part until this week. You see, the issues around Operation Iraqi Freedom (a dubious choice of name to some extent), was that this situation was never completely and correctly resolved (I admit that my use of correct is debatable). So as the US established democratic elections and formation of new Shia led government, we should wonder, even though the Shiite is in a massive majority, how the Sunni’s would react. Last week we saw the escalation of that sentiment in all its brutality. Giving a lot more weight to the consideration Bill O’Reilly left me with when he made the initial statement.

I needed to get another view, so I looked and I found this statistic Shia Muslims constitute 10-20% of the world’s Muslim population and 38% of the Middle East’s entire population, So that is a sizeable chunk, another gave me: “Most Muslims are of two denominations: Sunni (75 – 90%) or Shia (10 – 20%)“, which makes me wonder at first, yet the view from Professor Sue Hullett gave me: “Let me review, while Shia Islam makes up only 10%-20% of the world’s Muslim population, Iraq has a Shia majority (between 60%-65%), but had a Sunni controlled government under Saddam Hussein“, As she is the Distinguished Professor and Chair of Political Science at Knox College, her numbers should be regarded as reliable and they are in line with other numbers I found.

This leaves me with a much clearer picture that we are facing a change where Iraq goes back into the shape it had under Sadam Hussein. More important, the Shiite majority seems to be unwilling to fight the Sunni’s in this matter. Linked to this is a second quote from the Huffington Post “Tens of thousands of Iraqi troops just ran away, abandoned their equipment and abdicated their duty. Had even a fraction of them stood and fought, ISIS probably could have been thwarted.

This is exactly in the light Bill O’Reilly stated several years ago. So is this a case of ‘Barbarians’ attacking ‘Pacifists’? More important, is it the job of the USA to just intervene every time? The issue of ‘deserting’ Shiite’s, for whatever reason, gives clear indication that not only was the exit strategy poorly chosen, an exit strategy should not have been considered. In other light, if the Iraqi’s are not willing to fight for their country and resources, what rights are they enabling themselves with?

Is there a solution?

I am not sure if there is. I have my doubts whether 300 advisors will help when troops run away leaving plenty of resources behind for ISIS, the fact that ISIS was active in Syria and is now armed to the teeth and entering Iraq should also give way to additional questions. The strategic position of ISIS at the borders of Iraq, Syria AND Jordan should also be seen as a dangerous escalation. The destabilisation of Jordan (if made threats are accurate), will push millions of refugees in all kinds of direction; none of them could be seen as a positive one. This is at the heart of the strategy of ISIS, which with my apology for a lack of better phrasing is actually brilliant. They have area control to move large amounts of goods and the US is not clear on what to do and where to do it. If they openly start an opposition war, whether from Iraq or not, they will derail whatever achievements the US state department had made with Iran, this will open up more options for Syrian escalation and the one almost ‘stable’ part there (Jordan), will now be in direct threat as well as its Royal family. Unless King Abdullah II of Jordan finds an acceptable alliance and added support, it runs the risk of destabilising really fast. Now we have ourselves a true Clambake as ISIS ends up with resources at the bulk of the Israeli borders. There is then a direct threat to Eilat (via Jordan) as well as the option to enter the Sinai with from there a path to Hamas. Israel could find themselves in a direct war on two fronts whilst having only limited options to reflect the invader ISIS without direct consent of Jordan, which ties the hands of Israel, with likely direct threats to the cities of Eilat, Ashkelon and Beer Sheva, which puts Israel in clear and present danger of having to instigate a massive offensive. This changes the Sinai into a powder keg and whilst there is no outspoken hostility against ISIS by Egypt, even if it was, Egypt will not allow an increased presence of Israel in the Sinai, making this “no man’s land” a good haven for ISIS, would they proceed in this direction.

ISIS is there for a massive danger for overall stability. That part is called to order even stronger when we consider the headline of the Financial Times ‘Diverse funding and strong accounting give Isis unparalleled wealth‘, by Sam Jones, Defence and Security Editor yesterday afternoon. This gives way to several issues. Not only are they a threat, they are a well-funded threat, which means that they could support Hamas with materials allowing for even more attacks on Israel, giving us an easy escalating situation. I reckon my initial advice for Israel to take back the Sinai in 2012 would have been the best course of action. Not in any anti-Egyptian way, but considering the pressures President Sisi is dealing with at present, having to deal with ISIS in his back yard might have been the one part he preferred not to deal with.

It would also have limited several explorations by ISIS, yet that did not happen, which means that unless a direct solution for Iraq can be found, we will see escalations all over the Middle East. If ISIS does get a hold of Iraq, the US will be forced into a financial and military corner, requiring a solution in a multinational way and very likely in several nations. Will that ever be an acceptable option?

In my mind, the most direct meed would not be Iraq, but Jordan. It is dealing with millions of refugee’s and a dwindling amount of resources. You should by now realise that until Iraqi’s pick up arms (instead of fleeing), that theatre could be lost. If we accept the roman principle of war (the installation of defences against enemy retaliation), then adding strength to the Kingdom of Jordan, as well as a massive increase of Humanitarian aid will be a first priority. It makes Israel less of a target and it limits the movement of ISIS in regards to Syria and Iraq. Yet in the end, until an offensive is launched, ISIS cannot be dealt with and that is something that needs to be done, the question remains: ‘how to do it?’

 

1 Comment

Filed under Military, Politics

Limitations of the law?

It is an interesting, yet disgusting twist on the laws that involve freedom of speech. In Europe, the commonwealth as well as America, most of the nations in these groups have always championed freedom of speech. Yet, should there be a limit to that? Some argue that this should not be the case. The Netherlands has seen a first limit as it should exist in my mind. Those who have studied the law might be familiar with the Grudge Informer. It was one of my first law essay topics. Should unjust laws be accepted? This was at the heart of the matter, but what does this have to do with the freedom of speech?

In the Netherlands a case had proceeded through the courts involving what some call the freedom of speech, but what should be regarded as the dangers that is represented to children. The case went from court to the highest court, the Dutch equivalent of the UK Court of Appeal (US Supreme court). In there it was decided yesterday that the organisation ‘martijn’ is to be dissolved. (NOS News, April 18th 2014).

So what is the issue? Even though the case went on in regards to ‘freedom of speech’ and even though Mr Jon Schilder, Professor of Dutch constitutional law (Hoogleraar staatsrecht) is speaking academically that this is a dangerous development, the issue is that the organisation was about the protection of paedophiles. I did not go and utterly refuse to visit the site; I will not mention the location here either. The parents who took on this task after their child of three had been sexually abused have won the case after 4 years. They were appalled that the organisation had a website which, as it was stated that glorified paedophilia as well as handed insights into avoidance of prosecution as well as instruction on how to minimise a person’s forensic footprint.

I cannot fathom the issues that play in regards to the freedom of speech as it casually endangers children. This goes far beyond the issues of accountability that I have always championed. The fact that a national constitution has such a draconian level of freedom that anything goes is beyond my comprehension. (at http://nos.nl/artikel/637394-advocaat-van-martijn-teleurgesteld.html) The words from Lawyer Bart Swier are even more unsettling “Mijn bezwaar is dat er slechts sprake is van een denkbeeldig theoretisch risico, en niet van enig concreet gevaar. Dat zou eigenlijk de maatstaf moeten zijn voor een dergelijke vergaande inbreuk op de vrijheid van meningsuiting” translated: “My objection is that there is only an imaginative theorhetical risk and there is no concrete danger. This should be the measure for such an intense breach on the freedom of speech“.

I understand that Mr Swier is representing his customer, but can anyone even consider any level of ‘rights‘ when the foundation of such rights are a direct danger to the health and welfare of children?

When we look at the article at http://nos.nl/op3/artikel/637506-pedofielenvereniging-nu-echt-verboden-wie-vindt-wat.html, where we see the following: “Een groep van 49 wetenschappers, acteurs, schrijvers en andere bekende gezichten deed twee dagen geleden in de Volkskrant een oproep om Martijn niet te verbieden” translated: “A group of 49 scientists, actors, writers and other well known faces made a plea in the Volkskrant (a Dutch Newspaper) to not make the organisation illegal“.

Even if I could agree to the Freedom of Speech to the extent that the Dutch would like it to be, this organisation is for people with a sexual preference for children. In my mind it is the most horrific crime possible. It goes beyond anti-Semitism or Genocide. This is about the mental and physical destruction of a young life, which has no defence and will continue through life physically damaged, mentally broken and often far worse than both. It is utterly unacceptable in my mind. Although I have a good grip on the need for a freedom of speech, any act, consideration or even contemplation that can be regarded as a danger to children should not just be disallowed, those involved should be prosecuted beyond what we consider ‘correct’. Be mindful that I phrased ‘can be regarded as‘. Any danger to any child is not to be allowed EVER! If this world is to continue in any way, then this can only humanely happen if the safety of any child is set above all others.

Any law that endangers a child should be seen as unjust and therefore should not be abided to, which was at the centre of the Grudge informers. In a similar light, we should consider the US with their Jessica’s law, a law that had been championed by Bill O’Reilly to be passed into law. The official version is ‘The Jessica Lunsford Act’, (H.R. 1505 of the 109th Congress). It was never voted on and the law did not pass. There was some opposition and controversy, yet at the heart this act was to protect children under 12, by setting a massive verdict on any adult who sexually engaged with a child under 12. In my view Mr O’Reilly had the right sentiment and the 109th US Congress who had led this slide should reconsider their point of view as they failed to better protect children. I will admit that there are likely legal issues that are true issues to resolve, yet the foundation is that this was about protecting children. Like the Dutch verdict which showed a rarely seen danger in regards to the freedom of speech. It is more fitting that this concerns both Civil Law and Common Law. How can the law be so ‘tolerant’ towards the dangers to a child?

A legal failing to a group so unable to defend itself is a failing to the Justice system as a whole; there is my link to the Grudge Informer. The question becomes whether the law has failed, or is failing the protection of children. It is a hard verdict, but from these two points, that failing is a yes, however, there are two sides to this. On one side, I feel uncertain to additionally act against a Paedophile with new laws, as this would complicate the entire prosecution under the Mental Health Act, as this is dealt with through the DSM-V (the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders). And my reasoning is that I would not like to introduce some weird loophole giving them additional legal escape routes. Yet, this should not stop the legal groups to add additional protection to the child as well. If we consider the Dutch case, then the existence of the organisation, gives a clear view that there is premeditation, which in itself should allow for additional protection of the child. Even though the organisation is now illegal (as per yesterday’s verdict), these people will find other ways and it is almost a certainty that they will ‘connect’ online. This should give the law makers a direction where the ‘hunt’ should start. Although hunt is an incorrect legal word (the sentiment is however very correct), the need for a shield that protect children on a global level is an essential one and should be regarded as a first priority for lawmakers everywhere. Consider in that part the article (at http://www.nbcnews.com/id/42108748/ns/us_news-crime_and_courts/t/massive-online-pedophile-ring-busted-cops/), there was no date given in that article, but the fact that this involved 70,000 members is something that should scare lawmakers and parents alike.

We as adults all have a sacred duty to keep all children; no matter who’s they are safe from the dangers of such predators. In my personal humble opinion, in regards to the Dutch sentiment on the freedom of speech in this particular case, I hereby state: ‘freedom of speech be damned!

The protection of a child should always be first!

Leave a comment

Filed under Law, Politics