Archive for October 4, 2017

FULL MEASURE: October 1, 2017 – Media Trump

October 4, 2017

FULL MEASURE: October 1, 2017 – Media Trump via YouTube, October 2, 2017

Israeli technology saving American lives and equipment

October 4, 2017

Israeli technology saving American lives and equipment, American ThinkerRuss Vaughn, October 4, 2017

One of the huge problems in fighting asymmetric wars such as America has been doing now for decades is that the advantage a major power has in expensive, sophisticated weaponry can be negated in seconds with an inexpensive, primitive weapon, with the rocket-propelled grenade being the classic example.  RPGs have taken out everything from helicopters to heavy tanks.  Now,  according to Global Security.org, the Army is doing something about it by doing a test refitting its main battle tank, the M1A2 Abrams, with a new advanced Israeli defensive system.

The US military will be installing the Israeli-built Trophy Active Protection System (APS) meant to intercept and destroy incoming missiles or rockets on their M1A2 Abrams tanks. This will make the US military the only other besides the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) to use the defensive system.

The Trophy system consists of a quartet of radar antennae and fire-control radars that detects incoming projectiles, such as anti-tank guided missiles and rocket-propelled grenades (RPGs), and then destroys them with a blast like that from a shotgun.

It is a “hard kill” system, meaning it protects the vehicle by destroying the projectile; this is opposed to a “soft kill” system that interferes with the missile’s guidance and redirects it. Soft kill devices are useless against the simple RPGs popular with militant groups such as Daesh.

Jointly developed by two Israeli-owned state corporations, Rafael Advanced Defense Systems Ltd. and Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI), the Trophy is the only combat-proven APS in the world.

The Pentagon made this decision after an “urgent material” request, they said in a press release on Thursday. Each system costs an estimated $350,000, and it will be first deployed to one of the US Army’s 14 Armor Brigade Combat Team’s squadron of 28 M1A2 SEPv2 variants, a nearly $10 million contract. It may then be added to other squadrons later on if it impresses, the Pentagon said.

Anti-materiel weapons such as RPGs have been a perennial thorn in the side of the US military and its allies. A $2,000 RPG launcher firing a $500 grenade can destroy or disable a $9 million Abrams tank. Over the course of 2014, the Iraqi Army lost 100 of the 140 Abrams the Americans had sold them in the fight against Daesh.

That last paragraph explains exactly why this is a good economical move by the Army.  Even a disabled tank can cost millions to retrieve from the battle area and return to a maintenance depot capable of making the necessary repairs, so just a few such “saves” can more than justify the cost of this program.  Other active protection systems, like the Iron Curtain, are being used to protect other military vehicles.  Let us hope more and better protection systems are in the works to protect these vehicles and their crews.

 

Satire | WWII vets gather for solemn reminder to check their privilege

October 4, 2017

WWII vets gather for solemn reminder to check their privilege, Duffel Blog, October 4, 2017

BERKELEY, Calif. — The few remaining survivors of “The Greatest Generation”, who fought and bled in defense of democracy and freedom during World War II, were reminded to check their privilege today at a ceremony at The University of California at Berkeley.

The annual ceremony, sponsored by the Marginalized-Victims-of-Repressive-Oppression-by-White-Male-Capitalists-Over-Six-Feet-Tall-Student-Campus-Alliance (MVROWMCOSFTSCA), was intended to “send a message to all World War II veterans,” the group’s Facebook page said, “that no matter how many of your friends died right before your eyes, the fact that you were even there, only worried about dodging bullets and not violent speech, shows just how privileged you really were.”

Moonbeam Cinnamon Smith-Mustafa-Rodriguez-Gluten, the group’s organizer, shouted into a handheld loudspeaker at the dwindling crowd of aging veterans, noticeably smaller than last year’s group.

“You old, rich, privileged white men have no idea what the daily fight on the streets is like, what the struggle against an oppressive regime bent on domination is actually like,” she said.

 “You were too busy traveling abroad with all your friends. Going to Europe completely on the government’s dime. Visiting beautiful black sand beaches in the farthest corners of the vast Pacific ocean just to wave around the flag that is the ultimate symbol of oppression.”

Eugene Walsh, a rifleman who fought in the Battle of Okinawa and who, at the age of 18, held his best friend’s intestines with his own hands as he slowly died after his guts were shot out by a Japanese machine gun, turned his head to better hear the speakers.

“What’s she going on about again?” he asked. “Last year I think it was something about needing a ‘safe space,’ or some such thing. Boy, I hear that. I could’ve used one of those after the fifth human wave attack in one night. We ran out of ammunition and had to club our enemies to death.”

“I have never been more scared in my entire life. Human beings should never have to do that to each other.” Walsh said.

Walsh added that he couldn’t even imagine “what this poor young lady has to endure” in her life, sources said.

Catalan leader vows to proclaim independence within days as King Felipe VI blasts ‘disloyalty’

October 4, 2017

Published time: 4 Oct, 2017 07:26

Source: Catalan leader vows to proclaim independence within days as King Felipe VI blasts ‘disloyalty’ — RT News

A Catalan regional police officer looks on as people who showed up to support the Spanish national police officers staying in town, hold up Spanish flags as police vehicles depart in Pineda de Mar, north of Barcelona, Spain, October 3, 2017. © Albert Gea / Reuters
The president of Catalonia has said he will put the results of the independence referendum, deemed illegal by Madrid, into effect by next week, and urge Madrid not to intervene. It comes as Spain’s King Felipe VI has vowed to uphold constitutional order.

In an interview to the BBC on Tuesday, the breakaway region’s president, Carles Puigdemont, said he does not plan to delay the declaration of independence for much longer and is ready to “act at the end of this week or the beginning of next.”

Read more

A woman shouts slogans against Spanish National Police during a gathering outside National Police police station, in Barcelona, Spain October 2, 2017. © Yves Herman

Any attempt of the authorities in Madrid to override the Catalan regional government in a bid to hinder its actions in compliance with results of Sunday’s popular vote would be “an error which changes everything,” Puigdemont warned. He, however, did not elaborate on the Catalan regional government’s possible response to such a scenario.

At the moment, no negotiations have been held between the central and the regional governments, Puigdemont added.

Earlier, Puigdemont said he would agree to a dialogue mediated by the European Union if Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy greenlights the proposal.

“It is clear that things cannot go on like this: mediation cannot be renounced just as dialogue was before. We do not see a more effective way than sitting and talking,” he said.

Puigdemont’s announcement came shortly after a rare televised address by King Felipe VI, in which he lambasted Catalonian authorities for “repeatedly, consciously and deliberately” violating the constitution, laws providing for its status as an autonomous region, while “showing an inadmissible disloyalty to the powers of the state.”

Falling short of calling for dialogue between Madrid and Catalan officials, he went on to blame the regional authorities for being “totally outside the law and democracy” and putting Spain’s economy and its social well-being in precarious position “with their irresponsible behavior.”

Voicing support to the national government, Felipe said: “It is the responsibility of the legitimate powers of the state to ensure the constitutional order and the normal functioning of its institutions.”

While seemingly backing Madrid’s way of handling the crisis, Feilpe failed to mention the mass police crackdown on voters during the Sunday referendum that led to over 800 people being injured.

Read more

People raise arms and shout during a demonstration two days after the banned independence referendum in Barcelona, Spain, October 3, 2017 © Susana Vera

Appealing to Catalans, the King stressed the importance of staying within the framework of the law while defending ideas, and vowed solidarity and support to those locals who rejected the course pursued by Catalan officials.

“I know very well that in Catalonia there is also much concern and great concern with the conduct of the autonomous authorities,” he said.

Some 700,000 demonstrators took to the streets of Barcelona on Tuesday to vent their anger and frustration at the federal government and celebrate the outcome of Sunday’s referendum, in which 90 percent voted for independence from Spain.

Protesters were brandishing Catalan flags and chanting, “Independence,” and “The streets will always be ours!” The rally was accompanied by a general strike, called by Catalonia’s grassroots movements and unions for Tuesday.

The transport system was brought to a virtual standstill, with airports, taxi drivers and public transportation workers taking part. Many shops were closed as well.

Madrid denounced the referendum, ruled illegal by the Spanish Constitutional Court, and labeled mass demonstrations an affront to the rule of law.

White House talking points on Las Vegas urge Republicans to reject new gun laws

October 4, 2017

White House talking points on Las Vegas urge Republicans to reject new gun laws, Washington ExaminerGabby Morrongiello, October 3, 2017

White House talking points circulated to allies of the Trump administration on Tuesday urged Republicans to resist new gun control measures that would “curtail the freedoms of law abiding citizens.”

The document, obtained by the Washington Examiner, contains several bullet points that aim to help GOP lawmakers and pro-Trump pundits navigate the heated debate over the need for stricter gun laws in the wake of Sunday’s mass shooting in Las Vegas, which resulted in a death toll of 59 and left hundreds more injured.

President Trump welcomes “a reasoned and well-informed debate on public safety,” the talking points said, but holds fast to the view that the Second Amendment “is a key constitutional right that is meant to protect people’s freedoms.”

“The President believes that our founding principles, like freedom of speech, freedom of religion, and the right to bear arms must be protected while maintaining public safety,” the memo reads.

A section titled “Why Wait?”, presumably in reference to the gun control debate that began mere hours after the shooting occurred, reminds memo recipients that several “unknowns” remain surrounding the shooter’s motive, religious beliefs, mental health, and firearm purchases.

Here’s a sampling of how the White House has urged Republicans to respond to renewed calls for increased gun control:

  • “When it comes to gun control, let’s be clear: new laws won’t stop a mad man committed to harming innocent people. They will curtail the freedoms of law abiding citizens.”
  • “We’ve seen terrorist attacks committed with knives, by people driving cars into crowds, and hijacking airplanes…
  • “We’ve had examples where concealed carry has allowed people to protect themselves and stop a mass shooting in its tracks, such as last month in a church in Texas.”
  • “… more laws on the books may not work. The problems in these cities (Chicago and Baltimore) and many others isn’t too few gun laws.”
  • “We welcome a reasoned and well-informed debate on public safety and our constitutional freedoms, but we reject the false choice that we can’t have both.”

Trump said earlier Tuesday that he and congressional Republicans “will be talking about gun laws as time goes on,” though he declined to weigh in on current legislation that would loosen restrictions on gun silencers.

A day earlier, White House press secretary Sarah Sanders told reporters that having a debate on gun control so soon after the Vegas shooting is “not the place that we’re in at this moment.”

The White House talking points are below:

Las Vegas Shooting

The President’s thoughts and prayers are with the hundreds of victims who were killed and injured in this senseless act of violence.
We are monitoring the situation closely and offer our full support to state and local officials.

All of those affected are in our thoughts and prayers.

The FBI, Justice Department and Department of Homeland Security are working with local law enforcement officials to determine the facts surrounding this tragedy, and it wouldn’t be appropriate to start having a political debate before we even know the facts, less than 24 hours after local law enforcement and first responders arrived on the scene.

ISIS:

The FBI has said there is no evidence of a link between the suspect and an international terrorist organization at this time.

Gun Control:

Let’s gather the facts before we make sweeping policy arguments for curtailing the Second Amendment. The investigation is still in its earliest stages.
The Second Amendment has endured for more than two centuries for a reason: it is a key constitutional right that is meant to protect people’s freedoms, and the President understands that.

The President believes that our founding principles, like freedom of speech, freedom of religion and the right to bear arms must be protected while maintaining public safety.

We welcome a reasoned and well-informed debate on public safety and our constitutional freedoms, but we reject the false choice that we can’t have both.

And when it comes to gun control, let’s be clear: new laws won’t stop a mad man committed to harming innocent people. They will curtail the freedoms of law abiding citizens.

We’ve seen terrorist attacks committed with knives, by people driving cars into crowds, and hijacking airplanes.
And some of America’s cities with the strictest gun laws have the highest rates of gun violence. Examples include:

Chicago last year had over 4,300 shooting victims

Baltimore last year had over 900 shooting victims

This shows that more laws on the books may not work. The problems in these cities and many others isn’t too few gun laws.

Also, we’ve had examples where concealed carry has allowed people to protect themselves and stop a mass shooting in its tracks, such as last month in a church in Texas.

Again, we welcome this debate, but in the wake of Sunday night’s tragedy, we shouldn’t rush toward compromising our freedoms before we have all the facts.

WHY WAIT?:

Some of the unknowns we must learn from investigators:

· What motivated this individual?
· Did he have radical ties?
· Did he have mental health issues?
· How was his weapon obtained?