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23 July 2017

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fanto

Optimax,
the name you are searching for and other dealings by the international capital and IMF in 1990's Russia may perhaps be described in "Globalization and its Discontents" by Joseph Stieglitz.

fanto

All,
what happened to Mr (Prof) Kiracofe? He used to comment on SST years back.

Chris Chuba

Thanks, I'm all for what works. The ICRC is my conduit for providing whatever financial aid I can offer. I'm fine with Red Crescent. I'll choose a second organization as well.

I'm familiar with the Red Cross controversy, my dad's view was along the lines of ... 'if the Red Cross charged GI's for donuts and coffee to help fund operations for their brothers in POW camps, it was okay in the big scheme of things'. Understandable from his perspective :-)

Fortunately, he and the others were only there for about 7mo's. Bomber crews must have been kept in another camp, he never talked about seeing them. They would have been held potentially much longer.

Poul

South China Sea heating up.

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-40701121

turcopolier

fanto

He decided not to post here any longer. Perhaps you can find him elsewhere. pl

blowback

Lyttenburgh

They, most likely, don't. Why should they do that, if they can outsource this to the native/recently immigrated Russians, with axe to grind against the country?

I'm tempted to disagree with you there but only because I reckon the whole "perception management" business is an ideal way to scam money out of the American taxpayer. How exactly do you measure success in a "perception management" operation? And getting recent emigrants to do the work on the cheap means less profits for the Military-industrial complex and the US oligarchs. The United States spends about $65 billion on the IC (about the same as Russia spends on defence), so it's not as if there aren't enough "business opportunities" swilling around.

turcopolier

Phil Cattar

"Cavalry," not "calvary." Calvary is where Jesus died. pl

Old Microbiologist

Maybe. There are now quite a few conflicting theories about the origins of Homo sapiens and I tend to believe the parallel evolution in place theory so it is possible that an earlier species of human ancestors arrived to Australia and evolved there. We can only speculate about this. The fossil evidence is still relatively undiscovered in Australia.

robt willmann

There was violence in the Israeli embassy in Amman, Jordan yesterday (23 July)--

http://www.torontosun.com/2017/07/23/israeli-embassy-in-jordan-attacked-by-gunmen--three-injured-including-killed-jordanian-and-israeli-man-wounded

The Jordanian government says that three people were initially wounded, two Jordanians and one Israeli. The two Jordanians died, and one was a physician, according to the article.

http://www.cnn.com/2017/07/24/middleeast/israeli-embassy-jordan/index.html

http://stephenlendman.org/2017/07/israels-embassy-jordan-attacked/

Details of what happened are unclear. Jordan has refused to let an Israeli security guard who fired a gun to leave the country.

Here in the U.S., Jared Kushner, president Trump's son in law, is to appear (or has already appeared) before the staff of the Senate Intelligence Committee, and maybe some or all of the committee members. It is to be behind closed doors, although the committee has not listed it as being any kind of formal hearing. Kushner provided a written statement -- or, rather, his lawyers did! -- which is here:

http://www.epjresearchroom.com/2017/07/jared-kushners-opening-statement-before.html

https://assets.documentcloud.org/documents/3899497/Jared-Kushner-July-24-Statement-to-Congressional.pdf

Old Microbiologist

Recent investigations are revealing that our oral microbiome is a large part of reason for the development of dental caries and other dental diseases. We get it at birth from our mothers (and our associated environment) and in a way we inherit not the genes but the immune tolerance that develops early after birth and once established cannot (yet) be altered. However, it is possible to influence through diet if we over inoculate through foods like kefir and yogurt (or others such as found in hunter-gatherer societies) the effect of the microbiome and at least temporarily alter the effects of our "bad" bacteria. I personally have a concoction of selected strains of bacteria which I make my own yogurt and consume daily. It may not be the tastiest in the world but I am certain of what is in it and the effects attributed through research to the strains I selected. I haven't had any dental problems in over 50 years.

I believe sugar is only one thing which is a problem as many things are broken down into glucose so not eating "white" sugar (sucrose) doesn't mean anything if you have a diet rich in starches. It is a lot more complicated than that. Much of it has to do with who we are as subspecies and where our lineages evolved. A diet for one group of peoples is healthy for them and unhealthy for other groups. Yes, increased sugar influence a lot of other things and many of these interact in ways we don't yet understand. This is a burgeoning field of probiotics and how they influence our metabolism and influence ingestion and what pathways are involved. Most people don't realize that our intestinal system will only absorb through pinocytosis very small molecules and large ones like starch and cholesterol cannot be absorbed at all. They must be broken down into smaller molecules first such as glucose or free fatty acids (triglycerides). So, it is likely a lot of factors, many of which we don't understand yet, that influence our health. This is of course complicated by chemicals which are not a natural part of our diet and have unknown effects. Artificial sweeteners come to mid as do dyes and preservatives.

There is a lot of research happening in this area.

Old Microbiologist

Years ago I suggested something similar years ago to use DNA instead of encryption for messages. I also suggested that all bioweapon strains be secretly labeled with inserted code so each strain could be tracked forensically. I was laughed at back in the day but now we see it happening. I recall after the anthrax fiasco we had in my freezer over 400 distinct strains of anthrax and none of them had been sequenced. Back then it was crazy expensive. Now it is cheap and only takes hours instead of weeks. But, once characterized then it can be labeled with an insertion providing its bonafides. Eventually this will happen to us as individuals as well and much of our personal information will be encoded into our DNA. It is just a matter of time.

What worries me is the shotgun techniques being used to insert foreign DNA into other species and no containment is being used for these subsequent strains. We have no idea what the unintended consequences might be yet this is a common technique being implemented.

One theory of ecology and evolution is that when populations (especially humans) become too large nature intervenes to cull the numbers back to a manageable level. But, our science has permitted us to overcome many of these natural limits to our populations and now we have reached an unsustainable level. In this theory war is considered a natural phenomena and is part of this process. The same is for disease. It boils down to pestilence, starvation, or homicide. With techniques like CRISPR we may accidentally develop the strain which kills of the required number of people. Much of what we do is extremely irresponsible and highly dangerous and those ideas developed at the Asilomar Conference in 1975 have been tossed into the ash heap of history.

Confusedponderer

That Kiracofe went is imo lamentable. He was very educational poster. I have learned some good and interesting things from the man (and hope i haven't forgotten them).

May he do well and do so in health.

Old Microbiologist

It is sad as Cholera is easily treated with a single tablet of ciprofloxacin.Then you work on oral rehydration therapy which can be done very cheaply using water salt and sugar. Cipro is extremely cheap and the US has an enormous stockpile of it. I would say write your Congressman instead but oh yeah, we are the ones aiding the war against these people so helping them is anathema.

Old Microbiologist

Russian immigrants in the US are feeling the heat now and it is very much like the McCarthy years. So, I wouldn't count on their active support as now they are lumped into the enemy pile along with their mother country despite zero evidence of anything.

Lyttenburgh

" How exactly do you measure success in a "perception management" operation?"

Easy. Look at the pre-coup Serbia, Georgia, Ukraine (twice), etc, where quite a large group of supposedly "thinking" people got mobilized under the lofty calls of "fight against corruption" and "down with despotic Regime", honestly believing that they gonna live in the fairy tale soon afterwards. On their own, without handlers, such local outlets are just grant-sucking vacuum cleaners. Still, in the matter of war/national security/whatever, personal interests and pockets take the backseat, so when the "X-hour" happens, they are whipped in line. You can't wholly capitalize the war (but judging from some reports from the Ukrainian ATO, some are surely trying) if you want to win it.

Btw, they might not even be emigrants – just a foreign students who came to study in the West for several years and then go back to their countries being ideologically converted to think right things and retranslate (aka “propagate”) them on their own.

"And getting recent emigrants to do the work on the cheap means less profits for the Military-industrial complex and the US oligarchs."

No, it means that they demand enormous sums of (budget!) money for, as they advertise, "the employment of the cutting edge technology, methods and specialists"... and then hire ex-SU/Russian Jewish gastarbeiter, with the expertise in the field of producing megatons of the desired content for a fraction of the planned cost, while pocketing/diverting somewhere else the difference. One set of the oligarchs gets swindled - others get richer. Absolutely normal dynamic.

Babak Makkinejad

Thank you for your comments.

You will not get any arguments out of me, I expect that there would be subhuman monsters created through CRISPR; multiple subspecies fit for this or that task and sub-task.

Babak Makkinejad

There is also evidence that certain mental disease have got to with the sugar metabolism.

optimax

Leander

You are correct, I was thinking of the Clinton lead in the IMF 17 billion dollar loan to Russia which happened a few months before LTM hedge fund bail out arranged by the Federal Reserve, a preview of the 2007 Wall Street collapse.

jsn

To bolster your point, this at Consortium News:
https://consortiumnews.com/2017/07/24/intel-vets-challenge-russia-hack-evidence/

Note it is limited to a specific date and data transfer event, though one the MSM has made a big deal out of.

elaine

Colonel, I miss Tyler. Do you know why he stopped posting on SST? His
syntax was so creative.

Greco

It looks like Trump is pushing back against McMaster's plan for an escalation in Afghanistan, although he's leaving the ultimate say so with Mattis.

Keith Harbaugh

Good and fair question.
Sorry, I really don't have enough expertise, or inside information, in this matter
to give an informed opinion.
But my best guess is that
the good old USA did and does try to influence Russian politics.
But that really is nothing more than a guess,
certainly not an expert or well-informed opinion.

BTW, something I have found very informative is a detailed analysis, “Russophobia”,
of the efforts to manipulate the attitudes and beliefs of the Russian people,
written in the 1980s by a very, very smart, and very well-informed about the Russian scene, man,
one Igor R. Shafarevich (associate of Sakharov and Solzhenitsyn,
recipient of the Lenin Prize,
elected to membership in the U.S. National Academy of Sciences, etc., etc.).
He examines the effort of what he (or his translators) calls "the Little People" or "the Small Nation"
to damage the ties of the Russian people to their historical heritage and values,
to damage their pride in their past.
Sounds amazingly like what the Cultural Marxists, you know, the Frankfurt School crowd,
have done very successfully in the U.S. and much of the West.
Also David Brooks, et al.
The parallels are amazing.

I really am surprised, amazed, and disappointed that
“Russophobia” is not more widely available than
through the military link below,
and that Americans have not taken advantage of the insights it provides into
the forces that have shaped Russia.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Igor_Shafarevich
“Russophobia”, 1989
http://www.dtic.mil/get-tr-doc/pdf?Location=U2&doc=GetTRDoc.pdf&AD=ADA335121

kodlu

OM,

Can you please clarify the Asilomar 1975 reference?

Thanks

optimax

Buddy Holly--Learning the Game. The undubbed version recorded at home half-a-year before he died in a plane crash.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o0lyexqHlYk

English Outsider


Impressive paper. It's a great link. But there's something missing that isn't missing on this site.

That's not at all a criticism of the paper. I'm sure it does its job very well indeed. But here, as in similar papers I've seen from time to time, there's no examination of the basis from which current military thinkers work. That's the missing "something". If the Colonel permits I'd like to try and identify that something.

Starting off-centre, there's one slightly depressing quote that the author includes. It's a common enough though perhaps unfair criticism of UK defence procurement: - ."… The MOD could continue with the traditional, incremental approach of muddling through while Britain’s armed forces decline both relatively and absolutely at an ever faster rate. The appeal of such an approach is that it is in many ways the easiest option, since it largely obviates the need to make major decisions. The problem is that it leads to perpetual short-termism in decision making, and in the medium term produces suboptimal results (the delays to the aircraft carrier programme and its associated aircraft are a prime example of this). This inevitably results in capability degradation at a higher and higher rate, major programming inefficiencies (as we have seen over the last few years) and a major disconnect between ends, ways and means."

In some respects that's merely the usual problem of defence procurement - getting a quart out of a pint pot and that when no-one can be sure what's going to be needed tomorrow and what tomorrow's tasks are. But there's also an ominous hint or two in the paper that we're allowing legacy capabilities to deteriorate.

These are the capabilities that we inherit from the past. We've been lucky and inherited a lot, far more than most countries. From hardware and bases and installations on to R & D and manufacturing expertise and on to the intangibles. There are a lot of those intangibles and they're important: experience, tradition, ethos - just words until the lack of them becomes apparent - on to the even less easily definable intangibles - a satisfactory relationship between the politicians, the administrators and the military and finally the all-important sense of purpose. That is, a general public awareness of what the military is FOR and a general public consent to and support for what that purpose is.

Few of these capabilities and none of the intangibles can be recovered simply by throwing money at them in an emergency. For them simply to be maintained in peacetime requires an immense amount of work. We saw that in the Ukraine. The Ukrainian army had been let go and it needs trainers from outside now to get them up to even making a show of operational efficiency. Special circumstances there, we might say, but there are indications that in some respects the German army has been run down a little and it's going to require some time before it's fit. From what we in the general public see of the British army, it's still all bustle and go there and there are no problems in that respect, but there must come a stage when the cuts go past the fat or even the muscle and start taking out some of the bone. When there are insufficient experienced cadres to get the next generation trained and to inculcate in them the necessary values then you're getting to a point of no return. That's when you can throw as much money as you like at the forces but there's not enough core there to throw money at. That's what I mean be neglecting our legacy capabilities. We take them for granted until they're lost and then we're in trouble.

If there are hints of that neglect in this thesis there are more than hints around when we go on to look at the writer's account of what the armed forces are there for. He spends some time on that and is explicit. Force projection, they call it usually, and the writer examines why we need it. Briefly, we are an international trading nation and more highly globalised than most. We have interests and sea lanes to protect. We need overseas clout.

That is the standard line and not just in the UK. As far as I know (not much, true, but even a non-specialist wants to know what the priorities are) it's the only line there is. A military thinker will always want to know what work the armed forces are going to be set to and why before he gets on to the infinitely more congenial task of working out how it's to be done. He always talks generally of "national interests" abroad and of how to protect them. I don't see in this thesis, and never see in similar writings, any examination of what those "interests" truly are or whether or not the means we employ to protect them are the best means. A bit of "national interests overseas", the mandatory R2P when the national interest isn't that easy to explain, and it's job done as far as explaining what the political imperatives behind the military imperatives are.

This is the curse of specialisation. The military thinker needs to know what the country and the politicians want of him. He isn't a specialist in economics or politics himself. He therefore takes the consensus of those who are, the orthodox economists and political thinkers It's not his job to argue with that consensus. He doesn't want to and is not qualified to do so. He just takes that consensus lock stock and barrel as his "mission statement" on the grand scale. Takes it gratefully - "Got that done, what a relief" - and slots it into what he's really interested in, the composition and disposition of armed forces that will enable him to satisfy the imperatives of that consensus.

What if the consensus is wrong?

An increasing number of people are asserting that the "Neo-liberal" or "globalist" model is faulty. A man won an election the other day in the US on that assertion. Should that interest such military thinkers as the writer of this thesis? Seems unfair to give him yet more work to do but yes, it damn well should.

On three counts it should matter to him.

One, the sheer military effort needed to enforce that "globalist consensus", or to "protect our interests abroad" working in the globalist model, is now becoming disproportionate.

Two, and this is apparent in the UK if it's not in the US, putting the military to the task of "protecting our interests abroad" is now getting seriously in the way of the true task of any military - protecting the country itself. We've heard senior officers saying that the UK military has been overstretched and that, together with inevitable budgetary constraints, puts us at risk of endangering that essential "core" I mentioned above.

Three. That essential intangible, popular assent to and support for what the military is now asked to do, is reducing. More and more people are asking "What is the military FOR" and getting no satisfactory answer.

On item three we're in real trouble. We knew what the military was for at Goose Green. But what's it for in Syria? What might it be for in Iran? And, to get down to detail, what are those new aircraft carriers for? More of the same as in Syria, judging by what the writer of this thesis is looking at when he examines their capabilities. Maybe it's time for the military thinker to widen his field of interest. Maybe it's time for him to look more closely at the consensus arrived at by the economic and political specialists who set him his tasks.

I hope that gets across the "something" I find on this site that I don't find in this thesis.

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