Archive for May 6, 2017

Sebastian Gorka Speech at the Republican National Lawyers Association

May 6, 2017

Sebastian Gorka Speech at the Republican National Lawyers Association, C-SPAN via YouTube, May 5, 2017

(Dr. Gorka addresses the Islamic Caliphate, aka the Islamic State, its history and how to defeat it and its affiliates. Please see also, President Trump slams the book down on calumny campaign against Dr. Gorka. — DM)

 

Further Evidence of Iran-North Korea Military Connection

May 6, 2017

Further Evidence of Iran-North Korea Military Connection, Iran Focus, May 5, 2017

London, 5 May – Pentagon officials saw more evidence of North Korea’s assistance when Iran tried to launch a cruise missile from a midget submarine earlier this week. Intelligence reports claim the submarine was the same type that sank a South Korean warship in 2010, which was Pyongyang designed.

This was the first time Iran attempted to launch a Jask-2 cruise missile underwater, but the launch failed, according to U.S. defense officials. That North Korea and Iran are sharing expertise when it comes to their rogue missile programs has been long suspected by nonproliferation experts.

Perhaps most worrisome for the United States is that this occurred in the narrow and crowded Strait of Hormuz, where much of the world’s oil passes each day.

Jeffrey Lewis, a missile proliferation expert at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey said, “The very first missiles we saw in Iran were simply copies of North Korean missiles, over the years, we’ve seen photographs of North Korean and Iranian officials in each other’s countries, and we’ve seen all kinds of common hardware.”

“In the past, we would see things in North Korea and they would show up in Iran. In some recent years, we’ve seen some small things appear in Iran first and then show up in North Korea and so that raises the question of whether trade — which started off as North Korea to Iran — has started to reverse,” Lewis added.

The ballistic missile Iran tested in late January was based on a North Korean design, the Pentagon said. Another missile launch conducted by Iran last summer, was similar to the most advanced missile Pyongyang has successfully tested to date, a North Korean Musudan.

North Korea’s Taepodong missile looks almost identical to Iran’s Shahab, according to defense analysts.

North Korea successfully launched a missile from a submarine for the first time in 2015, and officials believe Tehran is not far behind.

North Korea and Iran are the only countries in the world who deploy the Yono-class submarine. Midget subs are used in shallow waters, where they can hide. The 290-foot South Korean warship that sank in 2010 and killed more than 40 sailors, was ambushed in shallow water by a midget sub. However, North Korea denies involvement in the attack.

A U.S. defense official who declined to be identified stated, “When those midget subs are operating underwater, they are running on battery power—making themselves very quiet and hard to detect.”

During testimony at the House Armed Services Committee late last month, Admiral Harry Harris, the head of American forces in the Pacific said, “We are being taken to the cleaners by countries that are not signatories to the INF.” Harris warned that because the U.S. is a signatory to the Intermediate Range Nuclear Forces, or INF, treaty signed in 1987 between Russia and the United States, the United States has no land-based short range or medium range missiles. Iran and North Korea are under no such constraints.

The BM-25 Musudan ballistic missile has a maximum range of nearly 2,500 miles, and potentially puts U.S. forces in the Middle East and Israel within reach, if its problems are fixed.

It’s unclear to what extent North Korea is involved in the failed launch, apart from sharing their technology, according to officials.

Rex Tillerson, Secretary of State, tried to garner support for more United Nations sanctions against North Korea by hosting leaders from Southeast Asia in Washington on Thursday.

The White House put Iran “on notice” just days after Iran’s first ballistic missile test during the Trump administration.

Europe’s Childless Leaders Sleepwalking Us to Disaster

May 6, 2017

Europe’s Childless Leaders Sleepwalking Us to Disaster, Gatestone InstituteGiulio Meotti, May 6, 2017

As Europe’s leaders have no children, they seem have no reason to worry about the future of their continent.

“Europe today has little desire to reproduce itself, fight for itself or even take its own side in an argument”. — Douglas Murray, The Times.

“‘Finding ourselves’ becomes more important than building a world.” — Joshua Mitchell.

There have never been so many childless politicians leading Europe as today. They are modern, open minded and multicultural and they know that “everything finishes with them”. In the short term, being childless is a relief since it means no spending for families, no sacrifices and that no one complains about the future consequences. As in a research report financed by the European Union: “No kids, no problem!“.

Being a mother or a father, however, means that you have a very real stake in the future of the country you lead. Europe’s most important leaders leave no children behind.

Europe’s most important leaders are all childless: British PM Theresa May, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte and the French presidential hopeful Emmanuel Macron. The list continues with Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Löfven, Luxembourg’s Prime Minister Xavier Bettel and Scottish Prime Minister Nicola Sturgeon.

As Europe’s leaders have no children, they seem have no reason to worry about the future of their continent. German philosopher Rüdiger Safranski wrote:

“for the childless, thinking in terms of the generations to come loses relevance. Therefore, they behave more and more as if they were the last and see themselves as standing at the end of the chain”.

 

Living for today: Europe’s most important leaders are all childless, among them German Chancellor Angela Merkel (left) and Mark Rutte (right), Prime Minister of the Netherlands. (Image source: Minister-president Rutte/Flickr)

“Europe is committing suicide. Or at least its leaders have decided to commit suicide”, wrote Douglas Murray in The Times. “Europe today has little desire to reproduce itself, fight for itself or even take its own side in an argument”. Murray, in his new book, entitled The Strange Death of Europe, called it “an existential civilisational tiredness”.

Angela Merkel made the fatal decision to open the doors of Germany to one million and half migrants to stop the demographic winter of her country. It is not a coincidence that Merkel, who has no children, has been called “the compassionate mother” of migrants. Merkel evidently did not care if the massive influx of these migrants would change German society, probably forever.

Dennis Sewell recently wrote in the Catholic Herald:

“It is that idea of ‘Western civilisation’ that greatly complicates the demographic panic. Without it, the answer would be simple: Europe has no need to worry about finding young people to support its elderly in their declining years. There are plenty of young migrants banging at the gates, trying to climb the razor wire or setting sail on flimsy boats to reach our shores. All we need to do is let them in”.

Merkel’s childless status mirrors German society: 30% of German women have not had children, according to European Union statistics, with the figure rising among female university graduates to 40%. Germany’s Minister of Defense, Ursula von der Leyen, said that unless the birth rate picked up, the country would have to “turn the lights out“.

According to a new study published by the Institut national d’études démographiques, a quarter of European women born in the 1970s may remain childless. Europe’s leaders are no different. One in nine women born in England and Wales in 1940 were childless at the age of 45, compared to one in five of those born in 1967.

French politician Emmanuel Macron has rejected French President François Hollande’s assertion that, “France has a problem with Islam”. He is against suspending the citizenship of jihadists, and keeps insisting, against all evidence, that Islamic State is not Islamic: “What poses a problem is not Islam, but certain behaviours that are said to be religious and then imposed on persons who practice that religion”.

Macron preaches a sort of multicultural buffet. He speaks of colonialism as a “crime against humanity“. He is in favor of “open borders“, and for him, again against all evidence to the contrary, there is no “French culture”.

According to philosopher Mathieu Bock-Coté, the 39-year-old Macron, who is married to his 64-year-old former teacher, is the symbol of a “happy globalization freed of the memory of the French lost glory”. It is not a coincidence that “Manif Pour Tous,” a movement that fought the legalization gay marriage in France, urged voting against Macron as the “anti-family candidate“. Macron’s slogan, “En Marche!” (“Forward!”), embodies the globalized élites who reduce politics to an exercise, a performance.

That is why Turkish leader Erdogan urged Muslims to have “five children” and Islamic imams are urging the faithful to “breed children“: to conquer Europe. Islamic supremacists are busily building a clash of civilizations in Europe’s midst, and they depict their Western host countries collapsing: without population, without values, and abandoning their own culture.

If you look at Merkel, May, Macron and others, are these Islamic supremacists so wrong? Our European leaders are sleepwalking us to disaster. Why should they care, if at the end of their lifespans Europe will not be Europe? As Joshua Mitchell explained in an essay, “‘finding ourselves’ becomes more important than building a world. The long chain of generations has already done that for us. Now let us play”.

Russia’s 4 Syrian ceasefire zones – Kremlin spin

May 6, 2017

Russia’s 4 Syrian ceasefire zones – Kremlin spin, DEBKAfile, May 6, 2017

The only real change in Syria’s military situation is a surreptitious one, which may present a fresh, wide-ranging peril: The Lebanese Shiite Hizballah has agreed to place the 8,000 members fighting in Syria for Bashar Assad under direct Iranian command. This is part of a radical reorganization of all the military outfits Iran has deployed in Syria, whereby all the Shiite militias including Hizballah fall henceforth directly under a single centralized Iranian command.

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The widely reported Kremlin plan to set up four safe or “de-escalation” zones, that were supposed to have gone into effect in Syria Friday night, May 5, turns out to be nothing but a propaganda ploy. The spin factor leaps to the eye from the small print of the plan that was released by Gen. Sergey Rudskoy, head of Russian General Staffs Operations Division, Friday night.  He outlined four steps that may never take off.

1. Observation points will be set up to monitor the ceasefire (in the four designated de-escalation zones).

So when the putative safe zones were to have started operating Friday night, there were no observation points to monitor them.

2. The boundaries of the zones will be determined in accordance with the observation points.

This means that the zones don’t exist.

3. By June 4, a working team made up of officers of the three guarantors, Russia, Turkey and Iran, will be created to administer the observation points.

Who can tell what will happen in Syrian in a month’s time.

4. Only after the observation groups of the three sponsor-nations’ armies finish mapping the ceasefire zones can it be determined whether the plan is doable or not.

Still no zones.

The Russian propaganda machine worked overtime this weekend to convince the Western media that the ceasefire zones plan had won the support of the United States and Saudi Arabia.

The truth is that US President Donald Trump did not commit himself one way or another when he talked on the phone with President Vladimir Putin on Tuesday, May 2, although most of their conversation was devoted to Syria, rather than the North Korean crisis. There was no agreement between them on any Syrian issue, except for a decision that American and Russian forces in the war-torn country would stay out of each other’s way.

In sum, Moscow’s ceasefire zones plan, though effectively propagandized, has changed nothing in Syria’s bloody predicament.

With so much still up in the air, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson talked by phone Friday to Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, after which he gave the following statement: “The secretary looks forward to further meetings with the foreign minister to discuss the respective roles of the United States and Russia in de-escalating the conflict and supporting the talks in Geneva to move the political solution forward.”

Tillerson made no mention of any safe zones which Moscow claims to be setting up with Ankara and Tehran, or of the Russian-sponsored Syrian peace conference in Astana, Kazakhstan.

Rebel groups, supposed to be holding a dialogue with Assad regime representatives, walked out of its fourth round last week. And the Trump administration appears unwilling to throw its support behind the Russian-sponsored peace initiative, preferring to stand solidly behind the UN-sponsored Geneva process.

Turkey and Iran, the other two “sponsors” of the Astana framework, and putative “guarantors” of the safe zones, are strangely silent about the roles assigned them by the Kremlin. And no wonder. As rivals in the Syrian arena, their forces are ranged against each other in both Syria and Iraq. It is hard to see them working shoulder to shoulder alongside Russian officers to monitor safety zones which are still pie in the sky.

The situation at the moment is this: In Iraq, Turkish and Iranian troops – essentially pro-Iranian militias under the command of Revolutionary Guards officers – glare at each other across two warfronts, Tel Afar and Sinjar. In Syria, each of their armies is poised to grab Al-Bab in the Aleppo province.

The only real change in Syria’s military situation is a surreptitious one, which may present a fresh, wide-ranging peril: The Lebanese Shiite Hizballah has agreed to place the 8,000 members fighting in Syria for Bashar Assad under direct Iranian command. This is part of a radical reorganization of all the military outfits Iran has deployed in Syria, whereby all the Shiite militias including Hizballah fall henceforth directly under a single centralized Iranian command.

This fundamental shift in the military balance in Syria was initiated by Al Qods chief Gen. Qassem Suleiman, commander of Iranian forces in Syria and Iraq. He convinced supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei that there was no other way to safeguard Iran’s military supremacy in the Syrian war arena, guarantee a land bridge to Lebanon, or mobilize tactically for future confrontations with Israel.

The Syrian ruler also submitted to this step. Therefore, Hizballah and the Shiite militias will henceforth operate under the orders of the Iranian military mission which has its seat at Syrian High Command Headquarters in Damascus.

This “reorganization” opens the door for Hizballah officers to assume Iranian army uniforms and act as “ceasefire monitors” if Russia’s fictitious safe zones ever get off the ground.