Andy Coulson was found guilty, but Rebekah Brooks was acquitted in the British phone hacking case!
As Iraq disintegrates, Dems are blaming Bush and Republicans are blaming Obama. And the same arguments will take place when we finally leave Afghanistan and that God-forsaken place falls apart.
But as we apportion blame, let’s not forget the British and the French.
One of the huge problems we’ve had fighting in Afghanistan is that when we pursue the Taliban, they cross the border into Pakistan, where our ability to follow them is severely restricted. The Afghans have a save haven there because the people are Pashtun on both sides of the border. Rather than think of themselves as Afghans or Pakistanis, they think of themselves primarily as Pashtuns. A sensible border would have all the Pashtuns living in the same country, but noooooo. Back in 1893, a British colonial official created the Durand Line to separate British India from Afghanistan. When that part of India became Pakistan in 1947, the absurd border remained, irrationally dividing the Pashtuns.
As for Iraq, the British and French arbitrarily drew the Sykes-Picot line in 1916 (and implemented it after WWI), which falsely divided Ottoman Empire territory into Syria, Iraq, and Lebanon, separating Sunni tribes with a purely artificial border. The Iraq side was for the British, and the Syrian-Lebanese side was for the French, with no regard for the Sunnis who should have been assigned to the same country. If ISIS weren’t welcomed and joined by Maliki-hating Sunnis as they come from Syria into Iraq, they wouldn’t have been able to make the swift conquest they have.
And don’t get me started on the Kurds, who have really gotten the short end of the stick. They are a distinct people, Muslim, but not Arab. They should have an independent Kurdistan (and maybe will when this mess get resolved) that unites the Kurds now divided among Iran, Iraq, Turkey, and Syria.
President Obama will ask Congress for another $1 billion to improve security in Europe against the threat from Putin. I have no problem with this.
What I do have a problem with is how little the Europeans do for themselves. NATO’s members promised in 2006 to spend at least 2% of their GDP on their militaries, but of 28 members, only Britain, Greece, and Estonia, besides of course the U. S., have met that low standard. Everyone talks about the great trains and inexpensive health care in Europe. Well, that’s because they spend next to nothing on defense, relying too much on us, while our infrastructure is falling apart. If they’re so worried about Putin, they need to stop building their houses of straw and sticks, while we get stuck providing the bricks.
I’m especially looking at you, France. While the French can’t be bothered to defend themselves (again), they also won’t cancel their $1.6 billion sale of warships to Putin. So they make our job tougher and more expensive. You know, Mesdames et Messieurs, it’s your damn continent. We just come over now and then (like 70 years ago today, when our soldiers got slaughtered on your Normandy beaches, while you all hung out in cafes in Paris) to save your sorry behinds.
The U. S. and British governments are spying on us through online games like Angry Birds. I liked our government better when it was just wasteful and inefficient, now it’s really creeping me out.
With John Podesta, Bill Clinton’s former chief of staff, returning to the White House to help Barry battle back, Barry suddenly seems to have turned into the Big Dog. Um, Barry, you know how Michelle feels about healthy foods, so no Danish for you, if you get my drift.
And Britain’s David Cameron was in full Hooray Henry mode, as he and Barry and the Danish took a photo of themselves, behaving like ill-mannered teenagers rather than heads of state at Nelson Mandela’s memorial service. So clueless and classless. Why didn’t we send Biden? Hell, why didn’t we send Rob Ford and Alec Baldwin?
Poor Barry, it’s a long, long flight home with Michelle.
“I accept that Britain can’t be part, and won’t be part, of any military action on that front but we must not in any degree give up our utter revulsion at the chemical weapons attacks that we have seen and we must press this point in every forum that we are a member.”
British P. M. David
You’ve gone all wobbly, David. What would Maggie say?
The Express interviewed a retired British Special Forces soldier, Bob Stirling, as to how Princess Diana might have been assassinated by the SAS.
From “How rogue SAS would murder Princess Diana”:
“Using specially trained handlers, covert reconnaissance and a laser light to force Diana’s chauffeur-driven limousine off the road, the rogue death squad could not only have successfully completed their deadly mission, but made it look like a road accident.
“‘We are taught that a target is at its most vulnerable when in transit,’ Bob said. ‘In this instance it was know the target used a Mercedes to travel around Paris.’
“‘The car was the weak spot in their security, and the driver, Henri Paul, was the weak spot in the car because driver error is difficult to disprove, whereas mechanical tampering may be discovered later.’
“The operation would have begun with a period of surveillance. ‘It would not be difficult, as their field operators would be assumed to be paparazzi,’ he said. ‘The car would be tagged with an electronic tracer and its movements monitored so that regularly used routes could be found and reconnoitred.’
“He said that along these routes several places would be selected ‘where the car would be driving quickly into a bend or where leaving the road would meet a solid obstacle such as a concrete pillar.’
“A separate team would have studied the driver’s habits.
“‘During the preparation phase a method would be discovered by which someone, probably a female operator, could add extra alcohol to the driver’s usual drink.’
“To ensure the car was traveling fast enough to be deadly, a ‘pressure car’ could be used to fluster the driver, who could be expected to react impulsively under the influence of alcohol. Evidence from the inquest showed the car was traveling at 62 mph, twice the speed limit, when it entered the Pont de l’Alma tunnel.
“Traces of paint and debris indicated there had been a collision between the car and another vehicle, thought to be a white Fiat Uno which has never been traced.
“‘The coup de grace would have been the laser,’ added Bob.
“‘A motorcycle would be the most reliable means and the least likely to be discovered,’ said Bob. ‘On the day, the target vehicle was harassed by paparazzi motorcycles. A motorcycle with two people on it might appear to be paparazzi.’
“‘It could pass the target car just before one of the selected killing areas and the passenger could attract the target driver’s attention with a false brake light, then blind him with a laser built into a camera as they approached a suitable spot. There were reports of bright flashes from the the time of the event.'”