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13 September 2015


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nick  b


TTG, I saw this article by Josh Marshall about how he built a small sailboat from plans he got from Chesapeake Light Craft. I thought of you when I read it, and thought you might enjoy it if you hadn't seen it already.


FB Ali

Since March of this year the Saudis (along with various Gulf allies) have been carrying out a vicious air bombing campaign in Yemen. The United States aids the campaign by supplying logistical and intelligence support, including targetting information, as well as search-and-rescue for downed pilots. The Houthis, the target of the campaign, have no air or anti-air defences.

The few military targets available were soon reduced to rubble. Since then the air attacks have been solely directed at the civil population and the facilities used by them. A naval blockade has prevented essential food supplies from entering the country, creating the conditions for widespread famine. The US continues to support and aid this ongoing campaign.

A few muted voices have been raised in the West about this wholesale killing of civilians, some calling it what it is: a war crime. The Western MSM largely ignores the issue, or uses weasel words to cloak what is going on. Finally, the NYT today has a piece that talks in some detail about what is happening, but ascribes to "critics" the descriptions of what all this represents.

With so much genuine sympathy being expressed at the plight of the Syrian refugees suddenly noticed by the media (and thence the public), it is also necessary to pay some attention to the Yemen genocide. After all, they, too, are human beings.

Most of the Muslim world is complicit in this ongoing crime being perpetrated in Yemen. Is it too much to hope that the US will live up to some of the principles it preaches to the rest of the world, and work towards ending this slaughter?

The Twisted Genius

nick b,

Yes, I did enjoy that and I didn't see it before. And I'm glad that a political blogger discovered the joys of boat building and sailing. That CLC Eastport Pram he built is a very capable little craft. Someone actually completed the Everglades Challenge in one. I recently discovered a new project at CLC that caught my interest. It's a 13 foot sailer/cruiser called the Nanoship with lines straight out of the little English coastal fishing boats. I'll definitely be following its development.

The Twisted Genius

Brigadier Ali,

I share your disgust with the Saudi war on the Houthis in Yemen. Why we in the US consistently support the Saudi government is beyond my comprehension. Perhaps Richard Sale's latest contribution to the Atheneum offers the best explanation for our folly.


There is bare bones media coverage about Yemen in the West and in Arab countries. There is absolutely no public concern about the issue, let's just compare the international fervor wrought up every time Israel forays into Gaza. When Yemen is brought up in either Arab or Western countries, it is a question of a war between government and Iranian-backed Houthi rebels, with the benevolent Saudis offering their brotherly aid to the everyday Yemeni. Wide parallels can be drawn to the coverage of the current Libyan conflict.


So there I was just off mountain trail in the Shenandoah Wednesday afternoon enjoying a snack by the Rose River falls after an hour long hike, down hill all the way, when I spot a black bear across the way a bit. Hmm, just like ole Daniel Boone I think to myself, I can take him, he's only got a 150 lbs on me. Of course about that time he stands up and starts to sniff. Ruh roh; somehow I think that bear knew I had some of Crabil's beef jerky with me. Good to know I can skedaddle with the best of them, even barefoot. Of course the hike back was a bit longer, what with it being up hill the whole way; You sure can't get that experience in Central Park.

A. Pols

This is tangential, but I recently attempted to order the Trilogy via the Rosemont Books address PO Box and my letter was returned by the Post Office as undeliverable.
I reordered via Amazon and received the set. Currently enjoying the first volume up to page 70.


Fishing for Spanish Mackerel this morning, pretty much 15 ft into the water, at Ponte Vedra Beach. Wasn't hard to find them as the bait fish were boiling up out of the water directly in front of me. Waded in another 15 ft and noticed a dorsal fin BEHIND me. About a 3 ft black tip shark, going after the mackerel as well. No sweat as there was plenty for all.

Then, thought I heard thunder. Side note: this pissed me off as we had been chased off the beach on two consecutive Saturdays. Once by a waterspout heading our way (it died a hundred yards or so from shore) and another by a good old Florida thundershower.

Nah, weather was OK. It was a pair of F15-Cs screaming along down the beach from Mayport down to St. Augustine. About 1/4 mile apart, directly in train. Kind of cool. The fish didn't seem to mind. I had just changed from a Rappala plug to a plastic shrimp when the came back, apparently having had a quick lunch down in St. A.

Scenes from a retirement!

robt willmann

FB Ali,

Thank you for raising the problem of Yemen, as it is another current example of the destructive U.S. "foreign policy".

The BBC Newsnight program in England did a two-part story on Yemen, with the first segment probably on 10 September and the second one on the 11th. Part 1--


Part 2--


There appears to have been a third story, which combined some of the first and second parts, plus an interview with the Saudi Arabian "Baghdad Bob", called the spokesman of the "Saudi-led coalition" (rofl). He was identified as Brigadier General Ahmed Asiri. He starts at 7 minutes, 3 seconds into the program. It may have been broadcast on the 12th--


The host of the BBC Newsnight program, James O'Brien, looks as if he is trying not to be a stenographer. He also does an interview with a member of the British Parliament, Daniel Kawczynski, who is on the Foreign Affairs Select Committee and who parrots the party line--



A. Pols

thanks for telling me. Hope you enjoy. pl


The Bank for International Settlements (the central banks central bank) warns again of growing leverage in our financial system. The last time when they warned of excess leverage in the banking system the Masters of the Universe laughed. Only to find that Bernanke's subprime debt unwind was not contained.

Just as we see the chaos created by our incoherent foreign policy, we should expect that the denouement of more debt to solve a debt problem fostered by big government will be another unwind of inflated asset prices.


nick b


Water spouts, jet fighters, Spanish macks, I would be a liar if I said I wasn't envious. What kind of set up are you using for your surf fishing? I'm guessing the water temp is still ~80, so you're probably not wearing waders. How far can you wade out and still fish?

I've never caught a Spanish mack before, but I've been chunking for black tips and bonnet heads. That's a fun day of fishing. I was supposed to be out fishing a tournament yesterday on the upper Chesapeake, but my co-angler flaked out so I didn't go. Oh well.

Tight lines....


Lebanon [garbage]Protest Leaders Reveal Connections To Western Color Revolution Apparatus






The cities of Tripoli in Libya and Lebanon have the same etymology but different origin. Of course in Greek Tri is three and poli is city. In Libya, three close cities grew together. In Lebanon, the Phoenician colony of Tripoli was founded by three cities: the island city of Arad, Saida (fishing in Bible), and Tyre (Tsur for rock in Bible). Lebanon was envisioned as a Christian majority nation. But in their greed, they took in too much territory. The Christians have lost the demographic battle, as will the Israeli Jews- for the same reason of greed. Lebanon would have been a different country w/o Tripoli. It is the center of the Jihadist takfiri salafists.
"The reason why a Salafi-jihadist movement should have originated in Tripoli needs a little background. A city of half a million people, Tripoli is, in a nutshell, the seat of Sunni strength in Lebanon. Traditionally, Tripoli had been the center of militant pan-Arabist nationalist and Nasserist sentiment, and until the Lebanese civil war, it lay in the mainstream of Levant Sunnism. Militant Arabism in Tripoli had Arabist nationalist and Nasserist sentiment, and until the Lebanese civil war, it lay in the mainstream of Levant Sunnism. Militant Arabism in Tripoli had been so pronounced in the 1920s and 1930s that its inhabitants had fiercely opposed inclusion of Tripoli into a “Greater Lebanon.” In the 1930s, Sunnis from Tripoli took part in an armed revolt against the prospect of a “Greater Lebanon,” demanding Tripoli’s inclusion with the Syrian cities of Homs, Hama and Aleppo into a separate Sunni Arab-nationalist autonomy.
While the birth of jihadism in Tripoli can be ascribed to the outset of the civil war in 1975, the beginning of the substantive shift in the character of Sunni Islam in Tripoli may be dated to 1947, when the Salafist Sheikh Salim al-Shahal returned from Saudi Arabia to Tripoli to find the first Wahhabi-orientated Salafist movement. During Lebanon’s civil war, Al-Jama’a — the Lebanese equivalent of the Muslim Brotherhood (MB) — fragmented and splintered under the stress. With Syria’s intervention in Lebanon in 1976, a host of radical Al-Jama’a offshoots inspired by the 1979 Islamic Revolution in Iran sprang up. In 1982, these Al-Jama’a breakaway factions formed Harakat al-Tawhid al-Islami (the Islamic Unification Movement). The hardline MB offshoots, now united as “Tawhid,” then seized control of Tripoli from the Syrian-backed militia forces. "



FB Ali

the war in Yemen is a complex tragedy that has been years in the making due to lack of interest by the Saudis to assist in state building in any way apart from paying off a few hundred key tribal leaders a huge amount of money every year.

In more recent times as the people have failed to adapt and the population gone from perhaps 7 million in the 1970s to probably more than 35 million today. They grow nothing they can eat and a crop they are addicted to as a nation which is drying up the little water resources they had.

So Saudi provides the state with at least one billion dollars a year to feed itself. In return, Saleh and the Houthis invited the Iranians into the country.

All of these things were choices made by people. To have large families they couldn't feed. To grow qat rather than wheat. To choose to buy qat instead of food. To use oil as a means of personal enrichment rather than investing in the state.

Yemenis chose this path of destruction. Yes, its tragic they are now suffering bombing and a siege on top of that but the conditions for famine were laid years ago.

That the US is engaged with the Saudis is probably directly as a result of Saleh's purposeful construction of an al-Qaeda that he could control and use to a) threaten the US with bombing from time to time to get money to fight the threat and b) to absorb the anti-Saleh feeling he knew was there but could control. In short, I suspect the US finally tired of his game.

I wouldn't be surprised if the US is allowing the Saudis to "win" in Yemen while they get their asses deservedly kicked off the pitch in Syria and through the Iran nuclear deal.



You all make me weary with this talk of wading in the sea, Spanish mackerel, etc. What the hell is a Spanish Mackerel? In my ute I would have lazed about on the beach watching you for a while and then wandered up the strand looking for a bar and someone friendly. Claude, Balthazar, Snake Davis and the boys would have been there drinking and telling lies by the time I arrived. BTW, the City of Alexandria under foreign occupation is fixin' to eradicate the memory of people like them. I cooked up some head on Carolina grey shrimp on th Barbie today. Lovely. pl



I once ran an operation called "Surf Fisher." Does that count? pl

robt willmann


The reasons the U.S. consistently supports the Saudi government are the following two, in order of priority.

1. The Petrodollar, making the U.S. "dollar" the "reserve currency" in banks worldwide, with its added benefits that the Saudis would take some of the extra dollars from requiring the whole world to pay for oil with dollars, and buy some U.S. government debt and put some in the stock market casino.

2. Oil and gas.



As you are aslan lubnani, have you had the Beirut appetizer, Bizri? This is a handfull of live bait fish scooped out of the fish tank, dropped into dredging flour and then sent for a swim in the fryer. Delicious, sounds a bit Japanese don't you think? pl

nick b


You gave me a good laugh. Wading in the surf and fishing for anything IS my idea of relaxation. Though sitting on the beach and then sauntering up to a seaside bar is way up on my list too.

Spanish mackerel is just one of the many types of mackerel. Atlantic, King, Spanish, Cero are among a few of them. They are great sport fish, and IMO they make for great sashimi.

FB Ali

You forget that in addition to recycling their petrodollars through US debt and the stock market, they recycle a lot by buying expensive US weapons (and the trainers and freelance operators that go with them).

That is one of the additional benefits the US gets from the Saudi campaign in Yemen - lots of new arms contracts. Now and in the future.

FB Ali

Lots of countries and peoples make bad choices (including the US). That doesn't justify genocide being inflicted on them by an outside power.

As for the US, if anyone thinks that AQ will not emerge a bigger threat from this 'war' than they were before, they should have their heads examined.

I'm afraid so far I see no signs of the US kicking the Saudis' asses in Syria. If you are referring to the air campaign against IS, it seems you've been drinking Clapper's Koolaid!



The water temp was 81-82 F. Being a Mainer (Mainiac), I was in the water this past winter without the waders! The beach is a triple bank and slough. On low tide, I can get out 30 yards, at least.

I have a Daiwa Saltiga 10 ft medium heavy rod and a Tsunami Airwave 11 ft heavy rod. Both have Okuma RTX-80 reels, with 20 pound Kast King yellow braid and a 40 pound mono leader. I use 3 oz 'storm' sinkers (bullet shaped) and make up my own 'pompano' rigs with circle hooks. On a calm day, I can get the rigs out at least 50 yards. Usually use 'dead' shrimp or cut bait. we catch a lot of whiting, grunt and perch, some lady fish and what ever is migrating by. We all want pompano. I've caught many, many black tip and bonnet head juveniles.

Fish On!



I had to queue up "King Mackerel and the Blues are Running" after reading this.

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