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04 March 2015


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http://hereandnow.wbur.org/2015/03/04/lincoln-second-inaugural Here is a good NPR piece on Lincoln's second inaugural address which was a short 150 years ago today.

Charles I

Thank You Members of Congress Who Agreed to #SkipTheSpeech


Philippe-André Boileau


"Netanyahou, president of the US right wing?

20 years ago, a republican presidential candidate compared the US congress to an Israeli occupied territory. In 2015 it is unimaginable that a republican leader would express himself with such perfidy. Mr. Benyamin Netanyahou & his ideas prevail without efforts or resistance in this US assembly. They meet with more resistance at the Knesset..."

Le Monde Diplomatique is not a satirical newspaper. One can spend 12 hours just reading & understanding one edition. It is a serious french paper.

SAC Brat

I'm getting a hankering for a Space Gun or a Service Rifle. The CMP is about to open a competition facility in Talladega soon. I figure I have twenty years to acquire Distinguished points, first with pistol and revolver, then rifle.




The Ethical Warrior program ("Protector, not Killer")--finally what we need, or more New Age fuzziness? If Marines are ordered to shell civilian towns in the Ukraine, what are the policies and procedures for disobeying an order that constitutes a war crime? Would these procedures be respected?

different clue

Charles I,

All Ds, not one R among them. Well . . . now we have about a year to begin organizing money and time support to these people to withstand all the primary challenges and general opponents Adelson can pay for.


Jeffrey Goldberg replace Charlie Rose as host of his show last night. Looks like PBS has gone full zio. Goldberg regurgitated Netenyahu's talking points like the true believer he is but Ben Rhodes did a fine job defending the White House negotiations with Iran.




You don't see that much anymore, and that's a shame. You never know what kind of surprises you might find.



I think this is a pretty apt summary.


Mine is stamped 1944 IZMAZH, for reference. I had a friend who was hitting a steel silhouette at 300 yards with iron sights on it.



I paid about $80 for mine back in 2012, and they seem to have doubled in price since then for a Russian one. I shoulda invested in Mosin Nuggets.

The stock, the glass, the rail, and the bipod probably all cost 5-10X the Mosin itself, but damned if it doesn't look slick and you're going to ring anything within 400 yds with it no problem.



I imagine they know, but the Children's Crusade is running the show now, and if they know, they don't care.



Also consider the survivability (or lack thereof) of any of the "gator freighters" and what that says about the need for the USMC amphibious assault force.



more important than this inoculation of She Who Must Be Elected is the whitewash of general Petraeus.



I find the spectacle amazing in the whole "living the last days of Rome" sort of spectacle. All these idiots too craven to vote for anyone but the same fools who can't do anything but wring their hands.

Bazaar with a flag and a jingle, that is what we have become.


Surprise in Norway:


FB Ali

So, Gen Dempsey joins Clapper in advocating arming Ukrainian forces. That is the last nail in the coffin of my regard for him. He is just another Washington hardliner, all brawn and little brain.

Meanwhile, for some good sense on the subject, here is Prof Anatol Lieven, as usual:


The Twisted Genius


Until about 15 years ago, the local Roses store in Fredericksburg, kind of a low end K-Mart, advertised Mosin Nagants, Springfields and Mausers for 25 bucks. I'm an idiot for not rooting around in those.

The Twisted Genius


I will concede to the practicality and accuracy offered by that wild stock, but I still find a scarred wooden stock to be more aesthetically pleasing. I've inherited an old Remington 721 in 30-06, scarred and nicked by years of Adirondack deer camps. The most I'll do is float the barrel, glass it and get a nice scope. I don't hunt, but shooting the distance would be fun.


The Stark was a Perry class ASW frigate with an anti air capability, built for the protection of NATO reinforcement convois crossing the North Atlantic for Europe against attacks from Russian subs and bombers.

The Ayatollah class were Spruance hull based air defence destroyers, twice as large and much superior to the Stark, that became the USN Kidd class destroyers.

The CIWS on both classes was the Phalanx, which was probably adequate to the task, though now better systems exist (at that weight, RAM in particular, but that didn't exist back then).

In the case of the loss of the Stark, íirc the Stark '​s search radar and ESM systems failed to detect the incoming missiles.

Then non-detection by Radar should not spurprise, there is a reason why the Exocet is a sea skimmer - precisely as to reduce warning and reaction times (for Russian supersonic sea skimmers that goes even even more so).

As for the non detection by ESM, well, the Exocet was a NATO system which probably was why the ESM didn't identify it as a threat.

Iirc that was also a problem in case of the Sheffield also. In the case of the RN, they were using the Exocet themselves on their Leanders, which means it was not just a NATO system, but a RN sytem.

Today there would be much more sophisticated missiles than Exocet, like Norways's NSM - a subsonic stealth ASM with a passive IIR seeker.

As for losses of ships, NATO can be happy (I certainly am) that the resilience of their layered naval air defences never had to stand the test against a saturation attack by a technologically capable enemy like the Russians or Chinese. Compared to that the salvo against Sheffield and the solo missile agains the Stark were picknicks.

As for air defence capability of naval ships - for a German F123 ASW frigate the rule of thumb calculation iirc went like this:

Two directors can engage two targets, the two RAM launchers can engage two targets each with a salvo of two missiles i.e. each frigate can engage six incoming targets at the same time as they come in two at longer NSSM/ESSM ranges and the remaining four close in, as a last ditch defence.

The idea of saturation would be to fire 7+ missiles and/or decoys at it, ideally from several directions simulaneously as that would overwhelm the defences.

A traditional tracking radar can only look one way - which explains the trend towards systems like APAR that have permanent 360° tracking and targeting capability.

As far as the primary air defence component goes, the ship can carry 16 NSSM in its 16 cell VLS (and 64 ESSM in quad packs). For NSSM it would mean the frigate would have expended its load after engaging 16 targets. With NSSM the ship would have no longer range air defence capability left at that point.

Considering that VLS cannot be resupplied at sea, it is easy to see what an improvement ESSM quadpacks are in terms of weapon load (also in terms of capability). That is one of the factors that have driven the USN preference for larger VLS capacity and ever larger ships in the fleet.

AEGIS ships are much more capabable than the F123 (which, in terms of capability is ~ Perry +), and the USN has massive missile loads on their Arleigh Burke class (96 cells each) and Ticonderoga class (~128 cells), now has AEGIS spread around the fleet, has invested heavily in longer range air defence missiles and sensor integration and data linking, but the same sort of general logic and math applies.


Theae people arent arent against Netanyahu, theyre for Obama. Lets not kid ourselves.


"Netanyahou, president of the US right wing?"

More like their queen of hearts. The Iranians? Off with their heads!



The Republican Party is only "right wing" if you're Che Guevara.

We have no national equivalent to your FN or Jean Marine Le Pen. Both parties are whores for sale to the highest bidder.

alba etie

"Bees are going to swarm soon " . The second class of bee keepers just graduated from the non violent offenders prison population here in our local county jail . The beekeepers already have jobs waiting for them at the honey producer coop that supplies Whole Foods Market .

William R. Cumming

WOW! Many thanks for this excellent comment! My understanding is that SEA SKIMMERS can be launched from on-shore positions and aircraft but
can be they be launched from Subs?

Babak Makkinejad

I do not think so.

The Republican Party is not presently a conservative party like the one in UK; it is the party of Protestant Euro-Americans with no regard for the poor or the less fortunate, raring to go to war against any and all.

It tries to bribe the salaried classes and very ting shop owners by the prospect of tax cuts - just like Berlusconi did in Italy - all the while hiding the fact that essential government services were to be cut to pay for those tax cuts.

There is not a single positive program that that party espouses that a conservative person - such as myself - could agree with it.

Limited Government? They talk a good talk but has not happened since the days of Ronald Reagan.

Strong on defense? You mean joining Democrats going all over the world threatening and cajoling and telling other people how to live - or lese?

Searching for monsters to destroy all the while presiding over free trade deals that condemns people to perpetual poverty- just like their Democratic counterparts.

Che Guevara could point to a Marxist Utopia as the future end state; what Future state of affairs do US Republicans have in mind except Hoovervilles on a continental scale.

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