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26 August 2012


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David Habakkuk

So was Admiral Fallon’s Esquire interview disinformation? Had he got cold feet, or putting it another way had an attack of common sense? Or was he a confused man who did not really grasp what he was doing, or the games in which other people were trying to involve him? Or had sensible people taken him aside and pointed out the risks – including perhaps to his own position – of what Vice Admiral Cosgriff wanted to do?



I only met Fallon once. My impressin was that he was a confused and conflicted man. pl


"....approximately 3.5 million people in the U.S. are homeless, many of them veterans. It is worth noting that, at the same time, there are 18.5 million vacant homes in the country.


That's a whole lotta veterans, Col.

& what/who do ya think they'll resort to when they don't even have basic needs provided for?


Col. sir,

In line with the picture you've placed above -



I think what we really need is another good movie review. Or a nice scotch. perhaps its time to try the Laphroaig you mentioned.



I worked with Ms Todd for a spell; and based on that experience and the atmospherics I observed over there, I definitely lean towards her side of the story the unscripted battle group moves and upset admirals. From other sources, I understand that Stein did not directly interview Todd for this story - he used other public comments she's made, perhaps the emails she's sent to others, and the statements of several unnamed pro- and anti-Todd commentators to put together this expose.

The real question is why? and why now? for this Stein article? What is his agenda - or that of those who fed him the story? So much of what happened is years int he wake and suddenly, in the waning months of the Obama Administration this kind of story appears?

For certain, Todd was a mid-level official and observer of many events, policy decisions and meetings in the 90s and 00s. And someone who's character and personality placed her in and with more powerful personalities who believe (often rightfully) that the darker elements of what these officials say and do will be protected from public disclosure (forever) by subordinates like Ms Todd. Nothing scares the powerful than the thought that underlings will expose their failures, their errors and their vanity. And the powerful often work to make sure when the whispers start making it to the outside world, that the whisperer(s) are dealt with harshly. They are smeared, shamed, investigated and some times imprisoned, exiled or institutionalized. And I have a feeling that this is the case here.



The Stein article is very misleading. He makes it appear as if State were held in the dark about planned ship deployments to the gulf. That is nonsense. It was, after all, announced in Jan. 2007 that more ships, including a second carrier, would be sent to the Gulf by none other than Undersecretary of State Nicholas Burns. There were many press releases signalling the deployments and announcing the planned exercises off Iran's coast. There is simply no way that the Department of State would be unaware of these plans. Furthermore, the presence of two carriers and an amphib in the Gulf at once isn't that unusual and occurs with some regularity.

The article made absolutely no sense until I got to the end and it mentioned the "maneuver" on May 23, 2007. This is the "incident" Mr. Steins article is actually talking about, but which he doesn't directly mention or even describe: The decision to conduct a simultaneous strait of Hormuz transit for all three "large deck" ships and their escorts. That did occur on May 23rd, 2007 and was something that hadn't occurred before. You wouldn't know that from Stein's article though, since he never mentions it.

Ms. Todd apparently disagreed with the timing of the simultaneous transit, or the fact that it was simultaneous, or that there were three vessels that were going to the Gulf, or something. Stein's vague allegations make it difficult to determine. However, knowing what was going on at that time in the Gulf, I infer that Ms. Todd was upset because Vice Admiral Cosgriff allegedly didn't inform Adm Fallon about the simultaneous nature of the transit, or didn't inform the DoS, or something. Again, it's not really clear what the dispute was precisely, thanks to Stein's confusing article.

Instead, Stein editorializes and makes it sound as if Ms. Todd prevented another Gulf of Tonkin. Well, the transit actually did take place, it did not get "turned off" as the article claims, and it's not even clear if Ms. Todd's phone call to her DoS friend had any effect at all on the timing. Even here, Stein gets the facts wrong, saying Ms. Todd's phone call got the "maneuver" delayed until after a "critical" conference with the Iranians. In reality, the conference five days later, on May 28th.

Stein also fails completely to add any context about what was going on in the Gulf at the time. For example, the article depicts idea of sending a US Navy ship up the Shatt al Arab is as radical, but this was discussed right after the Iranians captured 15 British sailors in Iraqi waters right outside the Shatt and followed months of aggressive IRGC actions within the Shatt. Additionally, the article fails to mention the expiring UN deadline on Iran's nuclear program that came and went in 2007, which was the main driver of the various shows-of-force in the Gulf during the first half of the year. Also missing is the fact that none other than VP Dick Cheney flew out to the Stennis and gave a bellicose speech aimed at the Iranians also in May 2007, nor any of the other things going on at the time.

And the end of the day, Ms. Todd probably disagreed with US actions at the time, opposed the idea of a simultaneous transit of three capital ships, and I have little doubt there were substantive differences about contingency planning and potential responses 5th Fleet would recommend given the tense situation at the time. But the allegation here is that Ms. Todd, acting the role of whistleblower, prevented another Gulf of Tonkin is, at best, a stretch. Unlike what is alleged in the article, the deployment of the carriers and amphibs were coordinated at the highest levels and were part of a larger strategy to put pressure on Iran as well as respond to the capture of the British military personnel in late March. Instead, this article appears to mainly be about a tactical decision regarding a SoH transit. But you wouldn't know that from reading the article.


Looking for advice. I want to buy a gun. I was once a good shot...and am confident in my experience with weapons. But it has been a while. I want one thing from a pistol...I want it to shoot if and when I need it. I'll take care of rest. And advice? My sense is a 38 snub nose is a reliable weapon. But my view--as on many things--may be dated.

Babak Makkinejad

See this


Babak Makkinejad

Yes, something incredibly sad and, at the same time, grand.

Babak Makkinejad

Your statement: "...15 British sailors in Iraqi waters ..." is false.


I carry a Makarov for my CCW when I'm out and about. Its a smaller round (9X18), but it is reliable and the hollow points should deal with any problems you have. You can usually find it at around $230 or so as well, so its not a dent in your wallet.

Babak Makkinejad

I have heard from numerous sources that hand guns pose more of a threat to ownser and their families than potential intruders etc.

May be you should look into a shot-gun?

Or, better yest, move into a safer neighborhood?


My garden is beginning to produce. I usually gather a crop of cucumbers every week, and have a few zucchini as well. The zucchini is getting chewed up by something though - lots of wilted leaves. Found some squash bugs in my garden, and killed them immediately, but I'm not sure what else it could be.

The herb side of things is coming around really well - plenty of fresh rosemary, basil, and mint.

robt willmann

Today, Sunday, Aug. 25, there is an event going on in Tampa, Florida to gig the Republican party's convention a little. Once again, as was done four years ago, the rally is for Congressman Ron Paul and his supporters and ideas. It is being broadcast by C-Span 1 television from 3 to 5 p.m. Eastern time (going on live now). The C-Span schedule says more will be broadcast from 9 to 9:30 p.m. Eastern time tonight.

Congressman Paul will not be speaking at the Republican convention because the Romney people said he would have to go along with two conditions: his speech would have to be first vetted by the Romney campaign, and he would have to give a full-fledged endorsement of Romney. Dr. Paul declined the terms saying, according to the New York Times, that it (the vetted speech) would not be his speech, it would undo everything he has done for the last 30 years, and that he does not fully endorse Romney for president.


thank you tyler, for responding me. I will check it out...


Hey, good pun....'look into a shot gun'. Rest assured BM, (another pun?) I will give your advice all the consideration it merits.


"and why now?"

Well, Richard Bruce is rested and ready to help mold a new clone in the executive chair. Nothing like a newly implanted ticker to get you back in the game.

The beaver


Check whether it is not Japanese beetles devouring your plants. It is a bad year for them . Don't know where you live but we are being attacked in Southern Ontario (vineyards, vegetables and fruits farmlamds) as well as gardens in Québec . My vines (for table grapes) and a Turkish Filbert tree (hazel tree) have fallen victims to them.

The beaver

Fox News and the SEAL author who wrote a book under a pseudonym and here comes the threat from AQ:


Shorter Babak: "Be a victim!"

Learn to use your pistol and you should be fine, jonst. The 'sources' he is listing more likely than not list suicides (among other things) as "gun violence".


Starship Troopers.

Jokes aside, you're looking at a ready made army for any organization who can harness it.


I heard there are several jewish groups that oppose Rep. Paul being honored at the convention because he thinks we could use the billions of dollars we give to Israel better here.



So the UK is arresting people for 'racism' on Twitter.

The drumbeat of cultural marxism marches on.


F him Tyler....I been firing weapons since I was a kid....but it has been a while. "move into a safer neighborhood' indeed. It is getting old that worries me....not my neighborhood.

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