Tag Archives: military

Big old mean North Korea

north korean tanks

Sometimes we just need to back away and think for ourselves a moment, filter out the hue and cry. South Korea has the 11th strongest economy in the world. It has an arms industry of its own, exporting weaponry to lots of other countries. And the Republic of Korea [ROK], South Korea, has the 11th strongest military in the world. Far, far ahead of North Korea.

So what the hell is the US doing with its 25,000 troops in South Korea? ROK is perfectly able to defend itself, economically, militarily, diplomatically, every way. If they don’t feel strong enough to do it, they could form a mutual defense treaty with Japan, with whom they share the North Korean threat.

Ohh. Yeah. North Korea has nukes. Whoopteedoo.

Does anyone really suppose South Korea, Japan, hasn’t the capability of blowing those North Korean missiles and aircraft being launched a few hundred miles from them, doesn’t have, I was going to say the capability of knocking them out of the sky before they emerge outside North Korean boundaries?

Once we drop away from the WWIII rhetoric, the cries of nuclear winter and running around in increasingly smaller circles shouting increasingly shrill pronouncements, isn’t the greatest likelihood that, should North Korea attack anyone, it would be South Korea, or possibly Japan?

Because North Korea isn’t so crazy as to have attacked anyone at all in force since 1954. That’s right. There’s not a combat veteran, not one, in the North Korean military.

And where the hell do they get all that war material? Every round for those tanks is expensive, every rocket, every missile, every helicopter, every airplane, every bomb. North Korea is a poor country. Who the hell does anyone suppose is going to lend them money for leading edge weaponry, or send them 21st Century tanks, helicopters, airplanes?

I recall back before Nixon went to China there used to be frequent papers and articles with titles such as, Is China a Sleeping Giant, or a Paper Tiger?’. They were mainly concerned in those days about the Chinese military.

There’s probably a reason that today nobody asks the same question about North Korea. They’re too handy for waving around as s boogerman hiding in the dark closet or under the bed when Iran or some other scary place wears itself out as a war mongering distraction.

But sometimes we just need to stop and think.

Old Jules

Stolen valor? Give me a freaking break.

Hi readers.  Thanks for coming by for a read.

Gangs, whether it’s Hell’s Angels, Banditos, cops or [now] Army Navy Marine and Airforce volunteerees, tend to be jealous whenever some non-member sports their colors.  A tattoo artist acquaintance in Austin, Texas, started keeping a Thompson submachine gun under his mattress when he learned he’d tattooed a non-Bambino with a Bandito badge of honor, for instance.

But now what with the Valor-this and Valor-that being bandied about by the ‘thankyouforyourservice’ clubs, the big issue of the day is what you can see down at the VA hospital any working day.  People sitting around lying to one another about what John Waynes they used to be.

However, this is mostly a different breed.  Guys claiming to have been Navy Seals or Army Snipers getting all riled up because some dumbass down at the mall is pretending to be a soldier.  Sick enough the dumbass wants to do it, but how needy are those Seals and Snipers who haven’t suicided yet over the serious bullshit going on inside their heads?  They’ve got to go around looking for dumbasses to out to jack themselves up into something with a life worth living?

Probably there needs to be a little Ferguson platoon burning down the local recruiting offices.  This stuff is getting all out of hand.  Those guys are beginning to believe their own bullshit.

Now back in the day when I was John Wayne I wouldn’t have put up with all that crap by either side.

Old Jules

Richard Nixon: “That is no longer operative.” Current White House Guy: “Gimme a high five, baby.”

Hi readers.

Do you have difficulties keeping track of all that crap going on in the pestholes of the world?  I’m not talking about France here.  I’m talking about places where we’ve either invaded them and given them their freedom [Actually I suppose France meets that description, along with everyone else involved in WWII except Russia] eh.  Well, hell.

Let me start over.  I don’t understand what the hell is going on in the Ukraine, Turkey, Syria, Iraq, Russia, or even the Pacific Ocean downstream from Fukushima Northern Hemisphere Distributor of Deadly Radiation.  I don’t understand why they keep beating the trumpet claiming Ebola’s going to kill us all.  I don’t understand why people keep claiming they don’t understand that Israel’s gradually absorbing their neighboring country before the eyes of the world and killing off the residents there indiscriminately.

It’s consoling to me to figure the guy in the White House doesn’t understand any of that either.

Nothing new there.  Back when Ronald Reagan was dealing with Iran during the Jimmy Carter presidency, telling them he’d trade them weaponry if they’d hold onto the hostages until after the election, Reagan didn’t understand it all, either.  I doubt he ever understood he’d been whipsawed by a bunch of smartypantses, one in particular, wearing a Marine Lt. Colonel insignia and a pretty face.  I think Iran/Contra took him by surprise.

Yeah, Colonel John Wayne North helped weave that web.  Along with a number of familiar faces later on during the Bush Senior presidency, engineering Desert Storm.  Maybe Bush Senior understood it all.

But nobody has since then, among the distant observers, nor among the people who think they’re making it all happen.

Be consoled, readers.  Nobody even remembers the assassination of President Diem, the Gulf of Tonkin and how that blew up into the biggest US military debacle in US history.  Nobody even remembered it a couple of years into the war.

For that matter, nobody remembers the invasion of Panama, the Iran Hostages and the cute piece of horse trading Reagan lackeys used to keep those hostages in prison until after the election in exchange for weaponry.  Nobody even remembers the Bay of Pigs.  Or the devil-take-the-hindmost last minute graveyards voting in South Texas that won the election for John Kennedy.

So if you don’t understand what the hell we’re doing talking about military involvement in the vicinity of Russia and the Ukraine, don’t worry.  A year from now you won’t remember it anyway.  Same with Syria, Iran, everywhere else it’s more comfortable for the government if you forget.

You’ll remember North Korea.  Be consoled.  And you’ll remember that someone in Palestine shot the finger at an Israeli and caused them to have to carpet bomb some town or city full of unarmed civilians to get at suspected terrorists.

Be consoled though.  The guy in the White House won’t remember it, either.

Old Jules

Battlefield nuke circa 1964 – The Davy Crockett

Hi readers.  Thanks for coming by.

Davy Crockett battlefield nuke

I came across this recently declassified pic of the Davy Crockett missile and couldn’t resist posting it.  Probably the first tactical nuclear weapon anywhere.  We had a battalion of these in Korea in the 1st Cavalry Division, and probably there were a lot more in the other units along the DMZ.  In those days even the name, “Davy Crockett” was classified.

The one depicted here isn’t precisely the same as those in the 1st Cavalry Division, though.  Ours were mounted on  3/4 Ton trucks and unless my memory is flawed I think ours were larger diameter than this.

I’ve never seen a picture of a Davy Crockett before.  They sure-as-hell weren’t allowing any shutterbugs loose in the vicinity of the Special Weapons / Division Artillery in those days.  I did, however, see a lot of diagrams, both internal and external.  I wish I’d been interested enough to remember some of it.

Anyway, we had enough of those just in the 1st Cavalry Division to spark WWIII. Probably with some left over for WWIV.

Probably nowadays they’re all re-deployed to Israel and pointed all their neighbors except Palestine.  Conventional weapons will take care of Palestinians just fine until they get them into the camps for the final solution.

Old Jules

Forcing 18 year old women to sign up for Selective Service [Draft]

Hi readers.  I know it makes women feel more equal and better about themselves, but I’m wondering whether this Executive Order extending Selective Service registration to females is a good thing.  Might be a sign of bad things coming down the pike, or they mightn’t do something to remind everyone there’s always a Draft Law hiding in the wings to snap up youngsters once the all-voluntary military folks have all sold themselves to Blackwater and other Mercenary groups for more money.

Is it not written, “For God, country and my babeeee”?

Are we going to give all that up, all it implies, all every adolescent could hope to believe, just to make girls feel more equal?  Give them the right to get conscripted into the military for a couple of years no matter what they’d rather be doing?  Give them a lead-pipe cinch to be raped half-to-death if they’re captured?

Well, I hadn’t really thought about it that way.  Now that I do, I guess it’s actually a good thing, though still probably a dose of bad news in what it implies.

Old Jules

The dual-citizenship US/Israeli friend to So Far From Heaven

Perhaps you readers will find this anecdote interesting and edifying.  I certainly do.

So Far From Heaven blog has a reader and sometimes commenter who holds dual US/Israeli citizenship.  Not to suggest it’s unusual.  I might be the only US citizen alive who doesn’t hold dual Israeli citizenship.

But this So Far From Heaven reader is special.  Back during the Vietnam War, maybe 1966-67, he adopted Judaism and fled to Israel to avoid the draft.  Became a weaponry salesman for Israel, maybe to Israel, probably helping them furnish weapons for every drug lord in South America.

And a thoroughly interesting, admirably loyal [to Israel] US citizen. http://leanpower.wordpress.com/

Yeah, this guy was a sight to behold back in the day.  Running along the railroad tracks with a backpack full of rocks in training for the Israeli army when he arrived in Israel sometime hence.  He knew if he became an Israeli he’d have to be in the military, but Israel never loses anyone in their wars.

Tens of thousands of casualties in the armed forces the Israeli military attacks by surprise and defeats.  A few hundred Israeli casualties.  Fell off trucks or something, most likely, or accidentally shot themselves.

Look up the statistics on every Israel war if you don’t believe me.  Any one.  Take your pick.  Look at the Israeli casualty counts, and the body counts of the countries they attacked.  Including the USS Liberty.  No Israeli casualties on that surprise attack on a US warship lasting several hours.  Not one.

Obviously our Israeli/US citizen reader/draft-dodger knew that.  He picked a winner for a country he could ‘serve’ in complete safety.  And when it was all over he came back to the Good Old US of A to buy and sell big guns.

They’re everywhere.  Even here on So Far From Heaven.

Old Jules

Drones, drone pilots and other heroes protecting our freedoms

Hi readers.  Thanks for coming by for a read.

I’d been putting off giving Drones, the movie a try on Netflix because of the cover art.  Gave the appearance of one of those animated space war games I’ve found I don’t want to devote any minutes of my remaining life to see.  But it was on my ‘list’ anyway.  I kept scrolling past it and eventually decided to bring it up long enough to apply the ruthless scourge treatment.

Frankly, it wasn’t a good movie in most of the ways I’d normally measure movies.  But it did show that somewhere some other human beings are wondering about the moral and ethical issues related to killing off targets thousands of miles away using drones and drone technology.  I’d wondered a lot about the minds of the people making the decision to kill a host of obviously innocent bystanders and whether they were experiencing any karmic loading afterward.

Drones does explore the matter and a viewer is left with the impression someone among the directors, screenplay writers, producers, had personal experience with drone piloting and all it implies.  I find it encouraging that someone, though maybe not any of the parties actually involved in making choices to blow away babies, children, mothers, and people such as myself who happen to be in the wrong place at the right time, someone is thinking about what it means.

All the usual suspects have opinions about the flick and have said so on Netflix:

Once again the poster and disc art has nothing to do with the actual movie. The entire production is shot inside a “trailer” with a few external shots to show it was in the Nevada desert. This mess concerns the elimination of a suspected terrorist and a shave tail lieutenant that doesn’t want to fira Hellfire missile from the drone she and her pilot are operating. It is left wing mush focusing on collateral damage with a side trip to how EVIL the military command is. Save yourself the loss of 82 minutes and avoid this male bovine excrement.

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Wow. 1st, yes the audio sucks in parts, but there’s subtitles. 2nd, surely any high ranking officer would not disregard such flagrant refusal of orders. Oh, & then we have both military people (girl & guy—YES, women can be violent!) committing assault; One could argue this is an example of why women should not be in combat (drone pilots are more like ground soldiers than regular pilots).At least 1 other review was wrong, this is somewhat realistic, nothing corporate, all 100% military. I’m not in the military, but as I understand it, deliberate refusal of orders, (esp in a combat situation!) would result in being relieved of duty, & disciplinary action.As another says, Poster is BS, nothing to do with movie. Does bring up many moral questions, but so does war & killing in general; If they’re part of your own nation, killing even 1 civilian can make someone a terrorist, & a murderer. (and US military—-yes, I’m in US—has killed *THOUSANDS* of Iraqis, who were unarmed; How does that make Us (ie, USA) any better than them?3.5 stars for moral issues; 1 for technical; Much more realistic than most military movies, but if this is 100% realistic, it’s a sad commentary on our (US) military.I agree, needs better research.

 http://www.netflix.com/WiMovie/70296444?sod=search-autocomplete

Just following orders is an excuse that ceased to carry water on the losing side back shortly after WWII.  Evidently the makers of this movie believe, probably correctly, that military careersmen in an all-volunteer military damned well better just follow orders.  And, of course, the orders are coming from people who’ve weighed all the ethical and moral issues, made sound value judgements without regard to anything in their personal lives.  All the way up the ladder to the guy in the White House.

Reminded me that I saw on Yahoo News the other day a story about Bill Clinton remarking somewhere that, “I could have killed Osama Bin Laden.”  Seemed strange to me, brought up visions of him and some Arab duking it out with swords or dueling pistols.

I’m more inclined, however, to think he meant he could have killed him the way he murdered the Mount Pleasant men, women and children outside Waco, Texas, using puppets who were just following orders.  Heroes who were, at least, close enough to smell them burning and hear their screams.  Different sort of hero from the drone pilots.

Old Jules