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25 October 2016

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turcopolier

All

When people start writing OT comments I know that we need an open thread. ISW today is suggesting that the next rebel effort to lift the siege of East Aleppo is receiving surreptitious Turkish government support, presumably through the Hatay-Idlib routes. If that is so, then the Turkish government is not serious about its new relationship with Russia because this will be discovered by Russian intelligence. pl

The Beaver

Would love to see that happening but I guess all the princes and rich kids will be protected.

http://saudigazette.com.sa/opinion/conscription-why-not/

apenultimate

As a follow up to the brief social security discussion a week or two ago, here's an article on where Clinton is likely to go with retirement savings:

http://www.ibtimes.com/political-capital/hillary-clinton-wall-street-financial-industry-may-control-retirement-savings

Brief summary:

--401Ks replaced by mandatory retirement payroll deductions to be invested into funds that can invest in high-risk investments, where transaction fees are much higher

--just to reiterate--mandatory, not voluntary like 401Ks

--would give investment houses access to an additional $300 billion to invest per year

--would generate an additional $1 billion in transaction fees per year for those investment houses

BraveNewWorld

I can't help thinking that Erdogan is not long for this world. He is hosing the Americans, Russia, EU, Syria, Iran, Iraq ....

This guy is gonna get got.

Jack

Liberal icon Michael Moore on people he knows in Michigan.

http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2016-10-25/michael-moore-trumps-election-will-be-biggest-fuck-you-ever-recorded-human-history

I too know people who are tired of Clinton Inc and the MSM campaign to manufacture the election result. They are voting Trump to give a giant finger to the Borg. A very good reason IMO.

And then there is Scott Adams.

http://blog.dilbert.com/post/152293480726/the-bully-party

As I've noted before no matter who wins the presidency half the people are not going to consider the president legitimate. The divide among the American people is a chasm that can't be bridged until the Borg is sent packing.

Tigermoth

I just watched another Houthi route of a Saudi block house on top of a hill with a BMP etc. On a clear sunny day, the Houthis walked up the main paved road with hardly a care in the world and took the place out. The Saudis are useless, that's why they have to pay other people to fight their war.

https://www.almasdarnews.com/article/video-footage-houthi-fighters-seizing-strategic-saudi-base/

So the question is what do they do with the $billions of arms they buy? My guess is that they are the CIA's laundromat since they can't seem to use the stuff. The Houthis strip the small arms then destroy all the armor and vehicles.

They then do their normal victory chant of which I can understand 2 words: " America, and Israel". I don't think the Houthi word that comes before them means "VIVA".

BabelFish

Why no is the right answer on no fly zones. Whenever I see an article in War on the Rock with Mike Pietrucha as the author, I read it with focus. Some of the facts are daunting. The number and cost of HARM missiles and towed decoys used in Kosovo is astounding. The number they quote regarding the USAF have up to 450 few fighters than back during early no fly actions is sobering.

http://warontherocks.com/2016/10/political-airpower-part-i-say-no-to-the-no-fly-zone/

fjdixon

Since this is indeed an open thread, wanted to recommend an older article by Tariq Ali on Kashmir. Interested on others take on his narrative.
Found an exceptional (but long) article on Kashmir in LRB http://www.lrb.co.uk/v23/n08/tariq-ali/bitter-chill-of-winter

SAC Brat

Just finished reading George MacDonald Fraser's "The Complete McAuslan" and recommend it to anyone who liked "Quartered Safe Out Here". Fraser again does a good job with the accents and the decisions he had to make as a platoon leader. A great view of what he saw and experienced and thought at the time in the post WWII Middle East.

I haven't quite warmed up to the Flashman series yet like I did with these two books and find myself preferring non-fiction at the moment.

ambrit

Sir;
Just as in the days of the real Sublime Porte, could not todays' 'Sultan' be but one in a constellation of would be "Fearless Leaders?" I've read comments suggesting that American foreign policy may not be monolithic now, with Pentagon versus Administration, versus who knows whom. Surely Turkey can become prey to factionalism that reaches the level of competing active foreign policy actors as well.
As for Turkey not being serious about it's "new relationship" with Russia, well, doesn't that sort of relationship between state level entities ultimately depend on who fears whom, and to what extent? The Russians need but show a little love towards the Kurds to send the Porte a message.

aleksandar

The future Aleppo battle

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p_hfXW-jOrI

I couln't be more acute.
A buffer zone. Maybe the lesson of august nearly debacle have been learned.
Jihadist VBIED caused so much damage to SAA.
A sort of « mobile defense »  will reduce VBIED destruction possibilities.

My guess is that SAA will set a double defense line.
One from complex 1070 to Tal Bazou, Tal Ahed ( Tal Mutah ? ) and Air Defense Base. Occupying these tells give SAA a tactical advantage, more views, more capacites to use artillery and helicos
Is it possible to create a « funnel » to concentrate jihadis force in a corridor between complex 1070 and Musrifah to destroy them  ? Don't know.
Second line of defense
East of complex 1070 to Artillery Faculty.
It seems that this line of defense in already set up, and heavily fortified.

Maybe russian military advisors have planned some kinf of « Debaltsevo » COA ?

Sam Peralta

Looks like Obamacare premiums are exploding as expected as Obama leaves the mess to the next president.

Who will Philadelphia vote for as many can't afford health insurance at these rates? My bet the same Democrat politicians who have run the city for decades.

http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2016-10-25/more-bad-news-phiadelphia-obamacare-premiums-set-soar-more-50

The Beaver

Like one of my uni African friends would say :

Eating a banana at both ends

https://www.almasdarnews.com/article/us-rules-cooperation-russia-liberate-raqqa/

“We have already begun laying the groundwork with our partners to commence the isolation of Raqqa,” Carter stated. “There will be overlap [with Mosul operation]. That is part of our plan and we are prepared for that.”

In other news:

Was this mission wrt Libya or something else?
"reconnaissance missions in the Mediterranean".
http://news.abs-cbn.com/overseas/10/25/16/mystery-as-five-die-in-french-plane-crash-on-malta

Poul

Mali turns bitter for France. State building is an expensive project of doubtful success rate.

http://uk.reuters.com/article/uk-france-africa-security-idUKKCN12J21U

Sam Peralta

The growth rate in the cost of medical care in the US is destroying our finances from governments to businesses to individuals. There's no reason why we need to spend twice per capita for medical care compared to Germany or Canada. There's got to be a scam and I am sure government is part of it.

http://market-ticker.org/akcs-www?post=231587

Ishmael Zechariah

Colonel,
Consider the following:
1-Russia bombed tayyip's tanker fleets, and terminated almost all trade and all tourism. The combined effect caused serious repercussions in Turkish economy.
2-In the first election (since repeated) MHP, playing the Turkish nationalist card, gained significant votes away from AKP- tayyip had no choice but to permit TSK and our security forces to neutralize the PKK.
3-After the false-flag gulenist putsch (this was first publicized as the work of secular Kemalists), tayyip is no longer sure of his standing with the Borg. He is now trying to eliminate both gulenists and secular nationalists, and is making the country ungovernable.
4-tayyip realizes that if the kurds form a Mediterranean corridor and declare independence, he would be in serious trouble w/ his base.

In summary, the klepto-islamist regime leaders are desperately trying to play both sides against the middle-their very lives depend on finessing this hand.

Ishmael Zechariah

jonst

OUR relationship with Russia is deteriorating rapidly. I think, especially the ME, everyone at the White House has 'checked out' of the building. 'Ring us back 21 January, 2017'.

For anyone interested in a good discussion (my take, anyway) about US-Russia relations, this is a decent talk. one hour.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VZKGVaiWDV8

Cohen is worth, again, my take, the price of admission alone.

Since it is an open thread, if anyone desires, and has one, I'd like to hear about any Affordable Health Care Coverage personal experiences you might have. Trying to get a sense what is going on out as the sign up date, Nov 1st, approaches.

turcopolier

tigermoth

wrong. Once again we see here the delusion that the CIA is the government and runs everything. It does not. Except for materiel transfers connected to an intelligence liaison relationship or in a covert action, CIA plays no role in materiel sales. The big transfers are the result of country to country agreements and are handled by an office in OSD working in accordance with national policy. The Saudis buy all that stuff because the royal family makes a great deal of money in "commissions." What they are doing in that trade is lining their own pockets at the expense of the kingdom's treasury. They have some primitive idea that they need more and bigger toys but really have little idea what to do with them. When they begin to conceive the idea that they can play with the big boys they consistently screw up. pl

Dr Puck

Or, alternately vote for Mr. Trump who has promised his healthcare reform, after eliminating the ACA will:

(1) lower co-pays
(2) lower premiums
(3) take care of those with pre-existing conditions
(4) offer more choice
(5) regain the direct patient-doctor relationship
(6) and, all of this will cost much less than the ACA
(7) Unleash competition and the entrepreneurial genius of the healthcare industry

What's not to like?

rakesh wahi

it is a big potential problem for India because in the past they have passed advanced weaponry to pakistan

turcopolier

rakesh wahi

Once you sell something to a foreign country, you no longer control it. Any restrictions you try put on further transfers are just foolish. pl

r whitman

I have already voted. It has cancelled out Tyler's vote.

Mr Toad

Turcopolier, I'd be wary of uncorroborated rumours from ISW. Kim Kagan's husband is Robert Kagan's brother. Just saying.

turcopolier

Mr Toad

Thanks. Since I just fell off the turnip truck as it rolled into town I need the advice. ISW's opinion was stated as just that. pl

Allen Thomson

> Except for materiel transfers connected to an intelligence liaison relationship or in a covert action, CIA plays no role in materiel sales.

Which, this being an open thread and all, does bring me back to asking why the Camp Stanley Storage Activity in Texas, probably a cover for the CIA's Midwest Depot, has been undergoing steady expansion from its already considerable size since 2001. Materiel transfer seems to be CSSA's raison d'être, so the enterprise, sales or just gifting, looks like it's in healthy shape.

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