« "Capable Indigenous Forces?" - Oh Dear! By Walrus | Main | A possible Russian campaign plan in Syria »

10 October 2015


Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.



It is quite clear that people higher than my old pay grade haunt here. It is idiotic to think that Sunni Arabs in Syria can be split off to fight to the death against Sunni Arabs from Iraq. They will skirmish to see who stronger, drink tea together, pray to the true god, and then figure out how to fleece the infidels before killing them. Please correct me if I am wrong.

I respect the opinion that this is a historic FUBAR. On the other hand; the black propaganda is direct and consistent. The chaos is spreading relentlessly. It is inside Turkey and trekking to the heart of the European Union. The USA and Russia are now in two bloody proxy wars. A regional Sunni Shiite Jihad has commenced. It has to be purposeful. Men of good will could stop it right now. In my opinion it is due to oligarchs and corporate leaders more concerned with money than what happens to us tomorrow, true believers on all sides playing out biblical end time prophecies and Israel Firsters intent on turning the Middle East into a battlefield of warring tribes.



Let's hope not. Holy shit.

Babak Makkinejad

Western Iraq & Eastern Syria, near the old Iraq-Syria border, is populated by very similar Arabs - their culture and dialect of spoken Arabic is identical; as far as I know.

I think the implication is that the areas within ISIS enjoy a certain amount of ethnic homogeneity which gives it national cohesion.

You cannot induce one part to fight the other easily, in my opinion. Specially now that those people are living in their Muslim Utopia.


Agreed. In researching the PAL's learned that the Brits don't use them, or at least didn't used to. Just pull a cotter pin or such and the weapon is armed. TTG had mentioned at one time that the Ukes giving up their nukes was not much of a sacrifice b/c they couldn't crack the code. Yep, that's what happened.

" William C. Martel (1998). "Why Ukraine gave up nuclear weapons : nonproliferation incentives and disincentives". In Barry R. Schneider, William L. Dowdy. Pulling Back from the Nuclear Brink: Reducing and Countering Nuclear Threats. Psychology Press. pp. 88–104. ISBN 9780714648569. Retrieved 6 August 2014. There are some reports that Ukraine had established effective custody, but not operational control, of the cruise missiles and gravity bombs. ... By early 1994 the only barrier to Ukraine's ability to exercise full operational control over the the nuclear weapons on missiles and bombers deployed on its soil was its inability to circumvent Russian permissive action links (PALs)."


who is pave way IV? 🙈😱
why do we listen to him


My understanding of these things (which isn't all that much) is that they are detonated by a number of conventional explosive charges which are triggered in a set sequence with set delays between them, which has the effect of compressing the plutonium core and triggering the fission reaction. So why couldn't they just dissemble the bomb, take out the control circuitry and replace it with their own? No codes required then, surely?

Of course testing it could be tricky and would probably attract unwanted attention.

I must be missing something.

ex-PFC Chuck

" . . this is a WORLD historic FUBAR."
Fixed for ya.

re oligarchs and corporate leaders, those are classes that self select for sociopathy. Same goes for the leaders of the true believers. The $$$ or the numbers of the faithful are just means of keeping score.


in a uranium design, a piston is basically pushed by explosives into a cylinder thus making critical mass. The Hiroshima bomb was of this design and didn't even have to be tested. The plutonium weapons are attractive b/c u can make plutonium in a nuclear reactor instead of having to separate the active uranium and purify it using centrifuges or such. But the trade-off is that the weapon is much more complicated. There has to an implosion inward of the shell which encases the plutonium, timing is critical. The Persians are accused of working on this intricate design. The US executed the Rosenberg's for giving the details of the plutonium bomb. I think it was a kangaroo trial with perjured testimony, but that's another matter.

"The prosecution's primary witness, David Greenglass, stated that he turned over to his brother-in-law Julius Rosenberg a sketch of the cross-section of an implosion-type atom bomb (the "Fat Man" bomb dropped on Nagasaki, Japan, as opposed to a bomb with the "gun method" triggering device as used in the "Little Boy" bomb dropped on Hiroshima)."


because he knows what the hell he's talking about and has valuable insights; otherwise, the Col. would have booted him.


Yeah, there is about zero percent chance this story is true. Story says three MiG-29s locked on to Turkish F-16s. Russian air assets in Latakia include: Sukhoi Su-25SM, Su-24M, Su-30SM, Su-34 and Mi-8 and Mi-24 attack helicopters. No MiGs.

There is a bizarre propaganda that is going on that defies explanation. A lot of it being put out by our DoD. Not to mention the bizarre pronouncements by our SecDef, who the day before yesterday was predicting Russian casualties in Syria and yesterday predicting terrorist attacks on Russian soil. Okay, and why is the SecDef coming out with these predictions? Weird to say the least.

Anyone who fights these jihadis in Syria and Iraq is a hero in my book. ISIS/AN/AQ and even the FSA are opposed to secular (and non-Sunnite) civilization in Syria. Women in Damascus, Syria can walk around in jeans with their heads uncovered. The West wants to overthrow the current Assad government which allows this secular lifestyle. Educated and secular Syrians in Damascus are almost unanimously in support of Assad. Meanwhile liberals in the West-- including Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders-- are in support of overthrowing this secular regime, only to be replaced by a repressive Islamic culture which will set back women and others for at a century. I don't get it. I just chalk it up as moral decrepitude.



IMHO, the neocon and R2P led US government thinks Syria is the second Soviet invasion of Afghanistan. The CIA are rubbing their hands in glee as they become big dog again as they get to play clandestine arming and supporting all the various jihadi combatants that are willing to make the Syrian intervention a quagmire for Putin.

I wonder what Putin's plan B is going to be as he comes to the realization (if he hasn't already) that he's in a proxy war with the US and it's jihadi supporting allies in Saudi, Turkey and the Gulf, not to mention the Izzie likudniks. With the exception of Trump, the rest of the candidates are all members of the war party including Grandpa Sanders.


Re: predictions of jihad against russia

paranoia, no doubt, but there was this at the end of last year:



good comments and i agree with your bostonb... moral decrepitude has defined usa foreign policy for a long time. all the western country hangers on can be lumped in too.. moral decrepitude.. they are more interested in bombing everyone back into the dark ages then stopping the madness... obama quote "...we did not just start taking a bunch of airstrikes all across Iraq as soon as ISIL came in was because that would have taken the pressure off of [Prime Minister Nuri Kamal] al-Maliki." same deal in syria.. regime change is the priority, not getting rid of ISIS.. if it was getting rid of ISIS, this leadership has a very bad way of showing it means business, as opposed to russia which clearly means business..

Paveway Mk IV

Thanks Will, but I'm just guessing by sifting through all the trash out there and the few quality sites I can find like everyone else.

And no need for the Col. to boot me if he finds my posts unhelpful or irritating - I understand clearly that I'm a guest here on *his* site. He need only mention it and I will disappear without another word.

SteveG: You can judge me by the content of my posts. Beyond that, you can safely assume nothing other than I am probably a 13-year-old angst-ridden girl posting from her mom's computer in the basement between texts to her other junior high school friends about the latest Keeping Up With The Kardashians episode. I claim no expertise nor insider knowledge of anything. I just Google and read a lot - a chimp could be trained to do as much.


I have zero hope for this new Pentagon attempt.

The Kurds have no reason to fight for Raqqa and that Arab group that is supposed to go with them is a gang of thieves according to this:
They may well sell their weapons to IS go back to Turkey and call it a day.

Meanwhile the CIA is going full proxy war on the Russians instead of cooperating with them.

Babak Makkinejad


Completely Off-Topic:

Small Steps towards Mind Control:
Wirelessly powered, fully internal optogenetics for brain, spinal and peripheral circuits in mice @ http://www.nature.com/nmeth/journal/v12/n10/pdf/nmeth.3536.pdf

Programmed synthesis of three-dimensional tissues:


What if stem cells turn into embryos in a dish?

I project that a synthetic mind-controlled human (soldier) is not that far off into the future.

Paveway Mk IV

I would settle for a synthetic government official with a functional brain.



If you were a 13 y/o girl you'd still be twice the man and ten times the poster that SteveG is.


Regarding SecDef bizarre comments this week which I referenced above, The Shaker posted this on his blog (http://www.unz.com/author/the-saker/):

"On the next day, the Russian Defense Ministry spokesman Maj. Gen. Igor Konashenkov replied by saying:

'Representatives of the Russian Defense Ministry, in their evaluation of the actions of the US military and the various operations they are engaged worldwide, have never sunk down to the level to publicly express the hope for the death of US servicemen or, even less so, of ordinary Americans. Today’s announcement by Pentagon chief Ashton Carter, unfortunately clearly illustrates the current level of political culture of some representatives of the US government or, should I say, their level of cynicism towards the rest of the world. I am sure that no US general would ever have allowed himself to express such feelings.' (Source: http://tass.ru/politika/2331242)"

I don't know, I hear some bizarre, through-the-looking-glass, comments by retired U.S. generals which leave me without words. Maybe a question or two, such as, are they under the influence of bath salts or Qatari lobbying money?


re the 'inricate design' - the point is that nuclear weapons are the illegitimate among a number of very legitimate uses for the exploding-bridgewire detonator Iran is accused of having used.

These detomnators are a dual use commodity, as is uranium ore - ractor fuel being the legitimate use, nuclear weapons the illegitimate one. Re wiki:

"EBWs have found uses outside nuclear weapons [in] safety conscious applications where stray electrical currents might detonate normal blasting caps, and applications requiring very precise timing for multiple point commercial blasting in mines or quarries.[6] EBW detonators are much safer than regular electric detonators because unlike regular detonators EBWs do not have primary explosives. Primary explosives such as lead azide are very sensitive to static electricity, radio frequency, shock etc."


You never read that in the NYT. A good antidote to such reporting is this slightly dated article by Robert Kelley's on the indispensable LobeLog.

"... the depth of thinking behind the Times article is summed up near its conclusion:

Iran already knows how to make a rudimentary bomb. So do terrorists and college students. The real question is whether Iran can miniaturize a weapon to fit atop a missile…

The threat posed by Iran to the West is equal to the threat posed by college students? Both know how to make a rudimentary bomb. That is the position of the Times. For some days now, American audiences have been treated to a television ad showing a white panel truck carrying an Iranian nuclear bomb blowing up in a parking garage in downtown New York City. This bomb didn’t need to be miniaturized to fit on a missile. And, as the Times tells us, college students can do it too.

The Times article purports to be a summary of weaponization issues, but it appears more likely that political biases trumped technical accuracy."



I thank God that we never learned by experience how good GRU/Spetznatz really were in terms of covert preventive or preparatory action. There would have been some nasty surprises for NATO had the cold war turned hot.

As for the Jihadis - happy hunting, everybody.

I think that Russia's struggle with Jihadis is one of the things where they and the US share interests, if reality was a criterium, wheras in DC-land Bomber McCain and Zbig and the crew see a destabilisation of Russia, by Jihadi or other means, is seen as a splendid idea.

The Russians were privvy to the rather unpleasant experience, as were the Chechens, to see how after the first Chechen war the Jihadis imported their Sharia law code from Sudan, coupled wih a influx of a lot of Gulf money. Some progress for a part of the former soviet union which then at least had some sort of structured governance, however corrupt!

The Chechen Islamists turned the country in something a lot like contemporary Isis-stan, with the addition of an unprecedented kidnapping business which a times saw Gulfies buying out to-be-liberated hostages for which ransom had already been paid because they rather wanted to see them beheaded instdead of released. What's not to dislike?

Since this, not to mention plain beastly terrorist attacks like Beslan, or on the Moscow cinema, claimed the lives of a lot of Russians (iirc a larger number of American killed on 9/11), one can easily understand Russian bitterness with regard to Jihadis.

But there you have already Ashton Carter warning that the Russian intervention in Syria will have Russia experience terror in return, just like Russias experience with Jihadi terror before was the result of Russian oppression of Chechens. I.e. it was because of brutal Russian policies towards Muslims and their wars in Muslim lands like Chechnya, and now Syria?

Clearly something that could never happen to the US, who after all only got a million or so Muslims killed over the last two or so decades, if one includes, as I do, the effect that the sanctions had on Iraq. I dimly recall that one Mr. Bin Laden in fact did raise the point.

I also recall dimly that the US was somewhat upset after the twin towers incident. There is little evidence of dislike of Jihadis per se to be found when one reads Bomber McCain today on Syria. His problem with Jihadis is purely functional. As long as they kill Syrians, Shia and Russians, they're moderate.

And there hardass smartasses keep telling that supposedly 9/11 taught the US a lesson short sightedness. No shit!

I think that habitual US hostility towards Russia, and that Gulfie activism in spreading Jihad there (and elsewhere) are atavisms from the cold war, that have been allowed to linger on. These policies today run on auto-pilot, largely unchecked as to their efficacy and reasonableness, or ill side effects. This continuity is a sign of mental rot, a malignant cancer that requires surgery.

Right now this rot may end up pulling the US and Russia into a world war, and if one hears the presidential contenders today, they appear to relish the thought, no, strike that, not thought but impression.

If the presidential debates (in which presidential as an adjective is merely descriptive and not indicative of incidents of brilliance or statemanship) are any indication, hostility towards Russia and Iran is American political boilerplate. It's like canned heat in a wrestling match. Putin ... BOOOOOOH!

Speaking of canned, it suggests another metaphor: It sits ready on the shelf in the political supermarket amongst the other stale, prepared meals - cooked up by the chefs at the think thanks, it's the convenience food of politics. No understanding or skills required.


Sounds like The Silicon Tit Principle writ exceedingly small. Form does not equal function.

alba etie

It was very disappointing to see Sen Sanders support overthrowing Assad.




my apology for giving such a poor answer. reading your post again, it's clear that you got the implosion bomb mechanics nailed. the explosives are special explosives but they are right there in the bomb. Still it would have been a huge project to dis-assemble are re-assemble the bombs. They had the long pole of the tent, the fissile material, also the chemical explosives. The timing thyristors would have been there too. There are reports that the Ukes did disarm some bombs.

Would speculate the reasons they didn't try to retain would be 1) The Russ threatened to physically take them back, 2) the US didn't want nukes in the hands of an unstable government, didn't want to risk an accidental launch pointed our way, 3) The Nunn-Lugar program offered them cash, 4) The Russ said the weapon shelf life date had expired and they were dangerous, and 4) the memory of Chernobyl plus the need for testing.

The comments to this entry are closed.

My Photo

February 2021

Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
  1 2 3 4 5 6
7 8 9 10 11 12 13
14 15 16 17 18 19 20
21 22 23 24 25 26 27
Blog powered by Typepad