Thoughts on the military and military activities of a diverse nature. Free-ranging and eclectic.

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Iranian EMP?

This is coolbert:

Intel Flash!! Hot off the presses. Thanks here to K. Timmerman, through NewsMax.

Here is the type of alarmist headline that causes undue headaches? Catches your attention with speculation - - that nonetheless - - does raise questions?

"U.S. Intel: Iran Plans Nuclear Strike on U.S."

Tuesday, July 29, 2008 9:00 AM

By: Kenneth R. Timmerman

"One group of tests [recent Iranian missile tests] . . . were successful efforts to launch a Scud missile from a platform in the Caspian Sea."

"Another troubling group of tests [where the Iranians] . . . detonated the warhead near apogee, not over the target area where the thing would eventually land, but at altitude"

"the Iranians are figuring out how to launch a missile from a ship and get it up to altitude and then detonate it"

Iran is working on a "system" that will allow for a nuclear strike on the U.S.? A strike that will utilize a SCUD missile, launched from a commercial vessel. An atomic warhead will be detonated at altitude, hundreds of miles in space, and cause an electro-magnetic pulse, the consequences for American society being of an apocalyptic nature!!??

"[if]a crude nuclear weapon were detonated anywhere between 40 kilometers to 400 kilometers above the earth, in a split-second it would generate an electro-magnetic pulse [EMP] that would cripple military and civilian communications, power, transportation, water, food, and other infrastructure"

"a single high altitude burst 200 miles above Kansas could propagate
an EMP enveloping the entire United States."

A recent series of Iranian missile tests, "detected' and observed by American intelligence, seems to suggest that this is a plausible scenario. This IS something American military planners DO have to worry about?

"if Iran launched its attack from a cargo ship plying the commercial sea lanes off the East coast — a scenario that appears to have been tested during the Caspian Sea tests"

"one of the nations [??] in the Middle East had launched a ballistic missile from a cargo vessel. They had taken a short-range, probably Scud missile, put it on a transporter-erector launcher [TEL], lowered it in, taken the vessel out into the water, peeled back the top, erected it, fired it, lowered it, and covered it up."

"Iran’s first test of a ship-launched Scud missile occurred in spring 1998"

Right now, the Iranians are preparing for such an eventuality? Plans are in the works, right now, as we speak?

About the author, Kenneth Timmerman:

In some quarters, Kenneth Timmerman is considered to be a pariah. A man who "fans the flames" in an unscrupulous manner, heedless of truth!!??

"Timmerman has been accused of yellow journalism in relation to his work on Iraqi WMDs."

"He has been accused of stoking conflict with Iran (a charge which his supporters deny), by misrepresenting the threat of an Iranian nuclear weapons program, as well as denouncing the National Intelligence Estimate [NIE] which clearly states that Iran had ended a project to design nuclear warheads some years ago"

What the NIE did state is that Iran had continued in efforts to enrich uranium, BUT WAS DOING SO FOR ONLY PEACEFUL PURPOSES, NOT AS PART OF AN ATOMIC BOMB EFFORT!!

EMP will ONLY occur as described IF the atomic warhead detonates at altitude! [see my previous blog entry on EMP] Solid-state electronics of all sorts - - unprotected - - will be rendered useless. Destruction to property will be at a minimum. But, for civilian society, the results will be catastrophic nonetheless. NO electricity and everything that goes with it, and that just for starters.

One missile - - one warhead - - one tramp steamer - - the U.S. is finis??!!



Wednesday, July 30, 2008


This is coolbert:

Here, from an English source, a description of problems, deficiencies, difficulties, etc., as found with the SA80 assault rifle. Currently, and for over twenty years now, the basic personal weapon issued to the common British soldier.


As originally issued [1985], the SA80 displayed an almost overwhelming number of deficiencies. To include:

* "couldn't be fired from the left shoulder (it still can't)" [let me explain. A soldier in a foxhole with a berm in front of him for protection needs in an instant to be able to fire from either side of the berm. Ability to fire either right or left handed a MUST!! In urban combat too, ability to fire from the left shoulder around a corner without exposing the torso is again a MUST!!]

* "The firing pins broke" [in MOST firearms, the firing pin is usually a delicate item??]

* "the magazine fell off"

* "the bolt-release button broke" [a cocked and ready to fire weapon has the bolt to the rear, a full mag is inserted, the bolt-release is pressed, the bolt goes home, strips out and chambers a cartridge]

* "the triggers got stuck" [this weapon is capable of auto or semi-auto selective fire!?]

* "the cleaning kit wouldn't clean" [this is a serious problem with a weapon for which constant cleaning is a MUST!]

* "the butt plate broke"

* "the cheek-pad fell off"

* "the cheek-pad melted" [in hot desert climates, the stock exposed to the direct rays of the sun, this can happen!]

* "the cartridge cases wouldn't eject properly"

* "the bolt carrier didn't fit properly" [in the M-16 too, bolt carriers have to be properly mated to the receiver for the life of the weapon?!]

* "the locking pins holding the gun together were inadequate"

* "the safety catch wasn't safe"

* "'it goes off when you drop it?'" [this particular deficiency is especially galling in that it was found by a foreign weapons manufacturer [Heckler & Koch], the problem hitherto not known to the English!!]

* "The magazine itself, . . . turned out to be a shoddy piece of equipment . . . the testing troops never used it, using a US-made magazine instead, because the British magazine caused the rifle to jam up to five times more often."

The reader will please note - - the number of times - - I have used the term - - "a MUST"!!

Elite British units [SAS & SBS] prefer the U.S. M-16 rifle and M-4 carbine??!!

How could this all possibly be? Protocols have not been worked out adequately to prevent design errors? Too many compromises must be made during the design, developmental and testing process that leaves too much room for error?

Maybe the entire world just needs to standardize on the basic AK-47? Hell, the price for an AK on the international market is $60 U.S.D. Ammunition also exists in abundance for a very reasonable price.

All problems with assault rifles for all nations would be solved more or less forever in one fell swoop?

I am being flippant here? Maybe NOT!!

"flip·pant - - adjective 1. frivolously disrespectful, shallow, or lacking in seriousness; characterized by levity"

I do find it interesting to note that the "original" assault rifle, generally recognized as being so, the German StG 44, COULD NOT BE FIRED FROM THE PRONE POSITION!!

NOBODY will ever get it 100 % right. But with the SA80, it is reasonable to ask some serious questions as to WHY?



Tuesday, July 29, 2008


This is coolbert:

"Chatfield, there seems to be something wrong with our bloody ships today." - - Beatty at Jutland - - 1916.

There was something wrong with the “bloody ships” under the command of Beatty at Jutland [1916]. Weaknesses, made manifest only DURING COMBAT, led to the repeated destruction of British combat vessels.

“Flash”, from the detonation of a German naval shell penetrating the roof of a gunhouse, traveling down the barbette, through the supposedly foolproof, interlocking safety doors, causing a catastrophic explosion of disastrous consequences within the ship’s magazine.

"flash - - 8.the sudden flame or intense heat produced by a bomb or other explosive device."

Barbette: The cylinder connecting the gunhouse with the innards of the ship. Hoists and lifts [elevators] within the barbette allowing shells and propellant charges to be moved from the magazines to the gunhouse. Possesses safety doors with interlocking mechanisms.

"the barbette is the non-rotating drum beneath the rotating gun turret (properly known as the "gunhouse") . . . It [the barbette ] forms the protection for the upper ends of the hoists that lift shells and their propelling charges (e.g. cordite) from the magazines below"

Design flaws [barbettes insufficiently armored?], doctrine [rapid firing preferred over safety concerns], safety interlocking door mechanisms over-ridden, callous and lax attitude toward ammunition handling, all contributed to serious deficiencies ONLY BECOMING APPARENT DURING ACTUAL COMBAT!!

Consider the catastrophic losses from internal magazine explosions the British suffered at Jutland:

* Indefatigable. ". . . Indefatigable was ripped apart by another magazine explosion, sinking immediately with her crew of 1,019 officers and men, leaving only two survivors."

* Queen Mary. "disintegrated when both forward magazines exploded, sinking with all but nine of her 1,275 man crew lost."

* Defence. ". . . . which detonated her magazines in a spectacular explosion . . . she sank with all hands (903 officers and men)."

* Invincible. "Invincible's flash detonated the magazines below . . . killing all but six of her crew of 1,032 officers and men, including Rear-Admiral Hood"

* Lion. [Beatty's flagship] "far larger destruction was averted when the magazine doors [were] shut and the magazine flooded. This prevented a massive magazine explosion at 16:28, when a flash fire ignited ready cordite charges beneath the turret and killed everyone in the chambers outside "Q" magazine."

ONLY two survivors. All but nine - - lost. All hands [lost]. All but six of her crew.

Lion was NOT lost, but almost was!

"Each of the British battlecruisers was penetrated through her turret roof and her magazines ignited by flash passing through turret, and shell handling rooms." [into the magazines, setting off a sympathetic detonation that blew up the entire ship]

"the British BCF had adopted a philosophy of having exceptionally high rates of fire as a tactical advantage. Flash protection and interlocks were considered an impediment . . . in some cases BCF ships had removed what rudimentary flash protection they had, to speed up ammunition feeds."

"British cordite propellant . . . tended to burn violently causing uncontrollable "flash fires" when ignited by nearby shell hits . . . Moreover the British magazines were not adequately protected against the intrusion of flash fires, and the Royal Navy emphasised speed in ammunition handling over safety procedures . . . leaving the ships vulnerable to chain-reaction ammunition fires and magazine explosions."

"the cause of the British ships' tendency to suffer from internal explosions. On this evidence, a major part of the blame may be laid on lax handling of the cordite propellant for the shells of the main guns"

"In practice drills . . . the cordite could not be supplied to the guns rapidly enough through the hoists and hatches [with all interlocks working as intended] . . . many safety doors which should have been kept shut to safeguard against flash fires were opened . . . 'bad safety habits' carried over into real battle practices."

“'There is something wrong with our ships,' . . . 'And something wrong with our system.'” - - Beatty at Jutland [during a latter stage of the battle]!

Indeed, there was. AND, ONLY found out about during COMBAT. At the worse possible moment, flaws, deficiencies, problems, etc.

Mr. Murphy at work?


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Monday, July 28, 2008


This is coolbert:

It is sometimes only during the rigors and exigencies of combat that deficiencies, faults, problems with weapons and weapons systems can be found? Weapons and weapons systems that work very well in development, testing, training, field exercises, etc., often exhibit serious flaws, unexpected and inherent failure and doing so ONLY during battle conditions! Much to the chagrin of everyone, often with fatal consequences to the user [pilot/infantryman/crew member].

Examples to include:

* The tendency of the Soviet MiG-15 jet engine to “cut-out” and shut down when in a steep, banking turn.

* The tendency of the American M-16 rifle as used in Vietnam to jam when firing with cartridges using a propellant mix for which the weapon was not designed.

* The tendency of the American M-16 rifle [early versions] as used in Vietnam to have the flash suppressor get “stuck” and “caught” on vines and vegetation.

* The tendency of the American M-48 tank, when hit in a certain specific spot from an anti-tank-guided-missile round [ATGM], to spew scalding hot hydraulic fluid throughout the crew compartment.

* The tendency of American World War Two [WW2] torpedoes failing to detonate when striking an enemy vessel.

* The tendency of American and British strategic bomber aircraft, attempting “pin-point” bombing from high-altitude, being almost totally unable to hit the target. [1000 bombs dropped on the Norsk Hydro facility, about ten hitting, negligible damage done!!]

* The extreme INACCURACY of the 73 mm gun as originally carried by the Soviet BMP combat vehicle.

A list could be made - - that would be endless??!! This specific list of mine has many entries for American weaponry. MANY foreign designed and manufactured weapons too are susceptible to “problems” as well. Discerned when used ONLY in combat! Be assured of it!!

Devoted readers to the blog can suggest further examples?


Saturday, July 26, 2008

Background check - - II.

This is coolbert:

I think that most folks would generally agree that the U.S. Border Patrol has ALWAYS played a role with regard to national security. Since 9/11 and WTC, a role that has become greatly enhanced, now of vital importance. A first line defense against terrorists hoping to infiltrate the U.S. and create mayhem in the homeland that we all hope to avoid.

Aggressive recruiting is currently being carried out by the Border Patrol agency. Applicants for the Border Patrol must now submit to a very intrusive background check as part of the hiring process.

"Border Patrol recruiting in new ways"

"an all-out effort mandated by Congress two years ago to nearly double the ranks to 20,000 officers by the end of 2009.

"About 3,400 agents shy of that goal, the agency has been recruiting at unconventional venues such as NASCAR races and professional bull-riding contests"

Persons interested in NASCAR and bull-riding are presumably out-doors, physical types that could handle themselves well in a rugged law enforcement situation. Some Border Patrol agents do their job from horse back. All agents have to have the ability to drive a vehicle with skill in difficult terrain and off-road!

"Nearly 293,000 people have applied for Border Patrol jobs since the hiring campaign was launched in June 2006, with about 1 in 30 applicants making the final cut, officials said.

Almost 300,000 applicants for 20,000 total positions, of which 3,400 slots have yet to be filled!"

"the agency's requirements include drug screenings and background checks that go back 10 years. New hires must prove they are U.S. citizens who have lived in the country for at least three consecutive years . . . Anyone found with a felony on their record or a conviction for domestic abuse is immediately cut."

"'This is the highest level of background investigation, and it is the investigation used as a basis for granting top secret clearance'"

Agents - - prospective hires, will now have to submit to an exhaustive background check to obtain a security clearance. Drug screenings, felony convictions, citizenship and/or legal status in the U.S., all this will be looked at.

The agency is obviously looking for high quality people, of demonstrable trustworthiness and integrity.

Dig this stuff however:

"the Border Patrol's national union accused the agency [the Border Patrol] of being too lax with background checks, citing two cases where new officers were later caught smuggling in guns and illegal immigrants. One of those agents turned out to be an illegal immigrant himself, the report said."

Among those recruited and actually working as active Border Patrol agents was a man who was HIMSELF AN ILLEGAL ALIEN!! THE BORDER PATROL WAS UNABLE TO DETECT THAT ONE OF THEIR OWN AGENTS WAS AN ILLEGAL!! Sounds a lot like Nadia Prouty, does it not??!!


"Moreover . . . the need to know conversational Spanish further weed out questionable candidates"

HAVE THOSE APPLICANTS BEEN TOLD IN ADVANCE THAT A KNOWLEDGE OF CONVERSATIONAL SPANISH IS A MUST!! This strikes me as a requirement that is way out of line. Agents do need to know a bare minimum of Spanish that is relevant to the job and that is all. Having applicants being rejected for not knowing CONVERSATIONAL SPANISH seems absurd!!



Friday, July 25, 2008

What comes around goes around?

This is coolbert.

Thanks here to the Jerusalem Post.

"Hizbullah convoy likely hit in Iran"

"A mysterious explosion in a suburb of Teheran that killed 15 people last Saturday was likely an attack on a Iranian military convoy carrying arms to Hizbullah, the Telegraph reported Friday."

"Last Saturday's incident was the latest in a series of mysterious explosions in the Islamic republic.":

* "In May [2008], Iran blamed British and US agents for an explosion at a mosque in Shiraz that had just been the site of a military exhibition."

* "In 2007, more than a dozen Iranian engineers lost their lives while trying to fit a chemical warhead to a missile in Syria."

* "A few months earlier [2007], a train apparently carrying military supplies to
Syria was derailed by an explosion in northern Turkey."

This is not all coincidental? A variety of parties are involved here. Iran and in particular the Revolutionary Guards are finding they cannot always have it their way? A message is being sent?

This was more than a mere bang? A massive amount of ordnance was being transported, and being done so in a callous manner subject to sabotage?

If you want to play with fire, prepare to have your fingers burnt at some time or another!



Thursday, July 24, 2008

Background check - - I.

This is coolbert:

The question has been asked: "Would Obama pass a security check for terrorist connections, and qualify to work as an airport screener?"

I suppose the best answer is - - it depends!

It comes as a surprise - - even in the aftermath of 9/11 and WTC - - that TSA baggage screeners, airport baggage handling clerks, persons whose role it is to clean airplanes on the tarmac, are now in the forefront of national defense!?

After 9/11, the whole world changed! Positions normally associated with entry-level, low-paying, dead-end jobs, are now [at least in the case of TSA screeners], federal employment. Still low-paying, entry-level work, but NOW, crucial and important to national security.

Positions and work requiring a background check and security clearance of SOME SORT! Homeland Security mandates this?

Could Senator Obama be hired as a TSA baggage screener? Again - - it depends!

Depends upon a variety of protocols, secret and otherwise, used as a normal part of the hiring process that may or may not exist. Protocols [some that are secret] that presumably might create a red flag in the case of the Senator! Red flags that would be an impediment to being hired as a TSA screener. Secret protocols, in particular, that might trigger a red flag would include [?]:

* Barack Hussein Obama. [Islamic name throws up a red flag?!]

* Foreign [Indonesian] residence during his formative years. [in an Islamic nation!]

* Drug use. Self-admitted, experimental in nature, but still ILLEGAL!

* An association with persons whose names appear in counter-intelligence files [Ayers & Dohrn], or is made apparent through data-mining.

Any of these protocols [assuming they exist] would create a flagging action? Combinations of them really setting off alarm bells all over the place?

Crucial to such protocols would be the extent and depth of the background investigation Normally, applications for federal employment require a detailed account of work history, residences, etc., for a period of ten years prior AND NO MORE? This is the same for the TSA baggage screener as well? Looking at a person’s background for ten years prior AND NO MORE is felt to be adequate by TSA standards?

Drug use, admitted, even of an experimental nature, as a teen, would AUTOMATICALLY PRECLUDE employment as a TSA baggage screener? I would question whether or not a hair sample for analysis is taken as part of the application process. A hair sample can reveal ALL AND ANY INSTANCES OF ILLEGAL DRUG USE!!

My intuitive sense in this matter is that Barack Obama would be qualified for a position such as TSA baggage screen. I would not rule out, however, that certain aspects of his life and background might very well raise questions. Questions that - - in the years after 9/11, MUST be raised!

“It depends - - it all depends!!” – Bert.



Wednesday, July 23, 2008


This is coolbert:

Excerpts from " The Evolution of Cooperation " by Robert Axelrod

"The Live-and-Let-Live System in Trench Warfare in World War I"

[here is a description, thanks to Robert Axelrod, of how the phenomenon of the trench raid came to be!!]

During the early stages of what become known as the GREAT WAR [World War One], those soldiers actually occupying the trenches, enlisted and officers, ON BOTH SIDES, quickly came to a realization that there was to be no swift end to the war, and no possibility of movement in any direction, as was wished by the senior commanders.

[early stages of the GREAT WAR would have included the initial movement of armies, "The Battle of the Frontiers", "First Battle of the Marne", and "The Race to the Sea"!!]


Consequently, at least until the famous Christmas truce of 1914 [and for sometime thereafter?], a modus vivendi was reached between the warring parties actually occupying the trenches. An accommodation, a compromise, a "Live-and-Let-Live System" developed, at odds with - - again - - the desires of both allied and German High Commands.

"modus vivendi - - A compromise between adversaries that allows them to get along temporarily"

A modus vivendi that became institutionalized, at least for those in the trenches. A quid pro quo understood to mean:

* If you shell us, we will shell you, otherwise, no shelling!
* If you snipe at us, we will snipe at you, otherwise, no sniping!
* Troops drawing rations are out of bounds for one hour!
* Troops out of the trenches at 0900 hours are work parties, and not to be fired upon!

"quid pro quo - - one thing in return for another. 2. something that is given or taken in return for something else"

Violations of the quid pro quo could result in swift and sure retaliation that neither side desired.

" If the British shelled the Germans, the Germans replied, and the damage was equal: if the Germans bombed an advanced piece of trench and killed five Englishmen, an answering fusillade killed five Germans."

Tit-for-tat type behavior!

Behavior of this sort on the part of the combatants COULD NOT BE TOLERATED BY HIGHER ECHELON COMMANDERS! Those general officers in command wanted action, movement, aggressiveness, casualty reports, etc.

A solution was devised to remedy the problem of accommodation and compromise. THIS WAS THE TRENCH RAID!!

"What finally destroyed the live-and-let-live system was the institution of a type of incessant aggression that the headquarters could monitor. This was the raid [TRENCH RAID], a carefully prepared attack on enemy trenches which involved from ten to two hundred men [squad to company size. Raids also may have involved battalion sized units as well??]. Raiders were ordered to kill or capture the enemy in his own trenches. If the raid was successful, prisoners would be taken; and if the raid was a failure, casualties would be proof of the attempt. There was no effective way to pretend that a raid had been undertaken when it had not."

"The live-and-let-live system could not cope with the disruption caused by the hundreds of small raids."

Christmas Truce, modus vivendi, quid pro quo, compromise, accommodation, let-and-let-live - - all went by the wayside!! The general officers got their way - - and let the slaughter begin!!



Monday, July 21, 2008

Commentary - - Cruise Missile

This is coolbert:

From a comment to the blog concerning the fate of the HMS Sheffield during the Falkland Islands War:

"The modern anti-ship cruise missile is more than adequate for the task of rendering large, important ships useless hulks. I was only a kid, but I remember what an Argentine Exocet did to the HMS Sheffield. It didn't need to be sunk to be put out of action permanantly."

When the Sheffield was struck by the Exocet missile, everyone aboard the ship instantaneously realized there was a terrible problem. And, NOT just from the missile striking the ship, the explosion and the damage caused by same.

Almost within seconds of the Exocet impact, the interior of the Sheffield was contaminated by a cloud of thick, black, acrid, highly poisonous smoke. SMOKE THAT WAS THE RESULT OF TEFLON COATED WIRE ON THE SHIP BEING IGNITED AND BURNED!

[anyone who was worked in electronics and has had to strip the end of an insulated wire to expose the conductor will be aware of electrical wire strippers. Melt and remove the insulation without nicking the wire in any fashion. A very good tool to have at your disposal. BUT A TOOL THAT YOU RECEIVE WITH A WARNING!! DO NOT USE THE ELECTRICAL WIRE STRIPPING TOOL WITH TEFLON COATED WIRE!! YOU WILL BE BREATHING IN POISON GAS!!]


Teflon coated wire has a lot of advantages from the standpoint of cost, weight, durability, etc. Teflon coated wire was the greatest thing since the proverbial sliced bread, at least in the eyes of the naval architects and engineers. I can imagine that the entire ship contained many miles of teflon coated wire, in all gauges.

But, in combat, possessed [teflon coated wire] a glaring and hideous drawback. Gives off that black, acrid, highly poisonous smoke. NO ONE HAD TAKEN THIS INTO CONSIDERATION!!??

The crew on the Sheffield had no choice but to abandon ship. Fighting the fire on the Sheffield was IMPOSSIBLE. Something further hampered any possible attempts at fighting the fire on the Sheffield. The UNIFORMS THE CREW WORE WERE MADE OF SYNTHETIC MATERIAL. MELT AND ADHERE TO THE SKIN WHEN FIGHTING A FIRE IN CLOSE QUARTERS!! OH MY!!

[Wool. What they need is a wool coverall style overgarment to be put on just prior to going into battle. Wool is the one natural clothing material MOST resistant to fire!!]

One missile [Exocet], one direct hit, one ship out of action, without any amelioration to the situation. The Sheffield was rendered a useless, impotent HULK!! And in a flash too!!

NONE of this had been anticipated by the naval architects and engineers that planned, designed, and saw to the construction of the Sheffield!!??


C'est la guerre!!



Saturday, July 19, 2008

Mugabe vs. MDC.

This is coolbert:

"I am bringing a distant nation against you—
an ancient and enduring nation,
a people whose language you do not know,
whose speech you do not understand."

16 "Their quivers are like an open grave;
all of them are mighty warriors." - - Jeremiah 5:15

"No rest, peace for MDC members"

The MDC, Zimbabwean opposition to the despotic dictator Robert Mugabe, now find themselves under attack by foreign imports, military men now working for the villain-in-power!

"London - Mercenaries have joined so-called 'war veterans' and militiamen attacking opposition supporters in rural parts of Zimbabwe, human rights workers have confirmed."

"They are cutting out the tongue, removing eyes and genital parts"

"They are cruel and brutal" "Soldiers" who have been imported specifically because they are cruel and brutal, and have absolutely no familial ties to the people they are abusing!

"These men do not speak any local languages and are extremely violent."

Hard, violent, skull-crushing, take-no-prisoners foreign mercenaries being used to intimidate the local populace. Things in Zimbabwe were already bad enough. NOW from bad to worse!!??

Who are they?

* Hutus being used by Mugabe?
* South African?

"Well... we do not know"

Thanks here to Jan: AfricanCrisis Webmaster Date Posted: Thursday 17-Jul-2008

Ironically, it was in Zimbabwe [Rhodesia] that the Englishman Simon Mann, was apprehended and spent four years in a Zimbabwean prison WHILE ALLEGEDLY ON A MERCENARY MISSION TO EQUATORIAL GUINEA - - THE PURPOSE OF WHICH WAS TO MOUNT A COUP D'ETAT AGAINST ANOTHER AFRICAN DESPOT.

Mercenaries working for villains such as Mugabe - - good! Work against persons such as Mugabe - - bad!



Friday, July 18, 2008

Supercavitation Again II. [Conclusion]

This is coolbert:

The aerial torpedo?

Please recall the amazing and astounding and counter-intuitive concept of super-cavitation.

[counter-intuitive in that when a certain high rate of speed underwater is achieved, drag becomes almost non-existent.]

A concept incorporated into the design of German World War Two [WW2] anti-ship glide bomb technology [Hs 293 and Hs 294].

"the Henschel Hs 293 and the larger Henschel Hs 294. Both missiles were supposed to be guided to a point in front of the water line of a ship. At water entry, the warhead would separate from fuselage and wings. Using its remaining kinetic energy, the (unguided) warhead-projectile would then follow an underwater path towards the ship target . . . The underwater path could be curved slightly upward by means of a small ridge on the upper side of the ogive. The projectile had to be curved upward in order to achieve a nearly horizontal path at the point of impact."

"Just before it reached its target it was guided into the water, where it then would run like a torpedo, propelled by its remaining kinetic energy."

An aerial glide bomb, that just prior to impact with the target, functions as an underwater torpedo.

"A small number of the Hs-293C were built, equipped to attack ships below the waterline. This unsuccessful design evolved into the Hs-294 air delivered torpedo system"


Modern anti-ship cruise missiles DO NOT incorporate this feature [aerial torpedo] in their design. I have perused the wiki entry of modern anti-ship cruise missiles and DO NOT find any instances of cruise missiles designed to strike a target below the waterline as would the Hs series German glide bombs!

With perhaps one exception? The Otomat/Teseo.

"The Otomat is a long range anti-ship missile capable of reaching around 180 km at an average speed of 1,000-1,100km/h"

"The Otomat/Teseo is an Italian built anti-ship and coastal attack missile first built by the Italian company Oto Melara jointly with Matra and now made by MBDA."

"The warhead is designed to explode inside the ship with the force of the explosion directed to the bottom of the target ship."

"the explosive blast is focused downward, attempting to blast a hole in the ship bottom sinking rather than just damaging the vessel."

The Otomat strikes ABOVE the waterline, as does any other of the conventional anti-ship cruise missiles, but then explodes in a fashion to direct the blast DOWNWARD, the target being holed BELOW the waterline!!

NO USE of super cavitation, however. Modern cruise missiles have a much greater speed than the German Hs series glide bombs, much better electronics, and can carry [?] a larger warhead. YET, designers have neglected or just brushed aside the super cavitation principle for some reason? The destructiveness of modern cruise missiles is considered to be adequate for the task? Planners and designers feel what is in use now more than fulfills the bill?

And, of course, finally, from Suvorov on the inventiveness of Italian weapons designers, specifically Oto Melara [called Otto Velara by Victor]:

There maybe some people who underestimate Italy as a country of great thinkers, but not the GRU [Soviet/Russian military intelligence] . . . The Italians were the unrecognized geniuses of military and naval technology [in the years prior to World War Two!!]"

And still are too? Still come up with innovative and unique designs that outstrip the competition? Anti-ship cruise missiles, for instance?



Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Supercavitation Again I.

This is coolbert:

During both World War One [WW1] and World War Two [WW2], the U.S. Navy did have a very distinguished record of successfully conveying, almost without loss, troops into combat areas via troops ships.

When you think of the MILLIONS of troops transported across the Atlantic alone during WW1 and WW2, ALMOST none being lost to hostile action, this was a stellar achievement on the part of the U.S. Navy.

Add all those for the Pacific theatre in WW2 also, and the record is even more spectacular.

However - - 26 November 1943: [thanks here to the Chicago Tribune.]

“In 1943 the HMT Rohna, a British troop-transport ship, was hit by a German missile off Algeria; 1,138 were killed, including 1,015 Americans.”

"this still constitutes the largest loss of US troops at sea"

"The blow was so devastating that it was classified until 1967"

In this specific incident, a BRITISH troop transport was sunk after attack from a Luftwaffe advanced weapon. Very large number of American dead!

Sunk by a German anti-ship glide bomb. A HS293.

Dropped from a German bomber, guided to target by a “gunner” aboard the bomber. Guidance “all the way” by one of three methods:

* Radio control.

* Wire guided.

* Television. [developed but not actually deployed in combat.]

German glide-bombs that came in ever more sophisticated and deadly variants.

Variants to include:

* Rocket-powered glide bombs.

* An “aerial torpedo” using the supercavitation principle [HS294].

"the . . . Henschel Hs 294 . . . guided to a point in front of the water line of a ship. At water entry, the warhead would separate from fuselage and wings. Using its remaining kinetic energy, the (unguided) warhead-projectile would then follow an underwater path towards the ship target. The projectile body had a slender conical shape with an ogive nose. The underwater path could be curved slightly upward by means of a small ridge on the upper side of the ogive. The projectile had to be curved upward in order to achieve a nearly horizontal path at the point of impact."

The HS294 became a TORPEDO upon striking the water. Object was to “hole” and defeat the underwater integrity of the target ship. More effective than “merely” striking the ship’s superstructure above the waterline. Supercavitation was possible due to the kinetic energy, forward motion, speed, and DESIGN of the HS294 “aerial torpedo”.

Formidable stuff!! [the HS294 was NOT actually deployed and used in combat?]

The German glide-bombs are just illustrative of how German military technology and engineering prior and during WW2 was SOMETIMES far ahead of whatever the allied nations were able to muster.

Technology and engineering to include: [but not limited to.]

* Rocket powered missiles and aircraft.

* Infrared technology.

* Jet powered aircraft. [as differentiated from the rocket-powered craft such as the Me-163.]

* Research into cold fusion? [German military scientists and engineers while researching high power sonar made the first observations regarding the entire principle of cold fusion.]


* Supercavitation.

German military advances and developments in atomic research and cryptology during WW2 WERE lacking. Severely so! But NOT in other areas.



Monday, July 14, 2008

Miscellany II. [conclusion]

This is coolbert:

From the wiki entry on Long Tan:

"The Australian soldiers were carrying a light load, approximately five magazines, and after nearly three hours of combat ran low on ammunition . . ."

Australian troops at the time carried the FN FAL rifle. Fired a 7.62 mm NATO round. A normal combat load would consist of five magazines, all loaded, one in the rifle and four carried in two ammo pouches.

[ammunition resupply was dropped on the embattled Aussie soldiers from helicopters passing overhead!!]

"The ammunition was still inside its packing crates. The tired soldiers had to break open these crates and load their magazines from boxes of ammunition. Magazines were considered part of soldiers’ weapons and issuing was strictly controlled . . . [after] Long Tan . . . combat personnel on operations started to carry more supplies, including more ammunition . . . Ammunition was later resupplied in magazines, and the issuing of magazines was relaxed"

It was then necessary to break open the crates containing fresh ammo, distribute the rounds, and then each individual troop had to reload his magazines by hand, one round at a time. Difficult - - NO - - very difficult to do when under severe pressure, hand and body shaking from the adrenaline rush, fine finger movements difficult under such circumstances. WHAT IS EASILY DONE ON THE FIRING RANGE DURING TRAINING IS NEXT TO IMPOSSIBLE IN COMBAT!!!

[the FN FAL, as with the U.S. M14 rifle, used a twenty round magazine.]

Better solution is to issue a full magazine, loaded in advance, vastly improving the ammunition resupply problem.

There too, is peril in such a system? Full magazines [mags], loaded with twenty rounds in advance, being issued to the troops as an ammunition resupply, exchanging empty mags for full ones on the battlefield.

You would not want to leave a full mag, spring fully compressed, lying idle for an extended period of time. A "shelf-life" exists for such a mag? The elasticity of the spring is lost and deformity occurs with prolonged compression and could potentially be a serious source of jams? PRE-LOAD MAGAZINES JUST PRIOR TO ISSUANCE TO THE TROOPS IS THE WAY TO GO??

[a magazine IS a mechanical mechanism. Albeit a very rudimentary mechanism, but nonetheless, an integral part of an assault rifle when inserted into the magazine well. Magazines, when not properly cleaned, lubed, and EXERCISED at regular intervals, can be a source of jams??]

A simple solution to a problem, if not correctly implemented, can cause difficulties of a different nature not even originally contemplated!!


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The Russians are coming?

This is coolbert:

Thanks here to Newsmax.

"Russian Warships to Patrol Arctic Again "

Monday, July 14, 2008 12:30 PM

"MOSCOW -- Russia announced Monday that it is sending warships to patrol Arctic waters for the first time since the breakup of the Soviet Union - - the latest move to increase the country's global military presence."

"Patrols by the Northern Fleet's Severomorsk submarine destroyer [an anti-submarine warfare vessel?] and Marshal Ustinov missile cruiser will begin Thursday"

"Russia began sending aircraft carriers to the Mediterranean Sea in December and resumed long-range bomber patrols in August."

"Moscow-based military analyst Pavel Felgenhauer said security was not Russia's primary motivation in sending the Navy ships to the Arctic."

"'This is flag-waving and that's basically it,' Felgenhauer said. 'Sending a couple of patrol boats to the Arctic won't change anything.'"

NO, but read this and ponder - - "MacKay mocks Russia's '15th century' Arctic claim"

"'This isn't the 15th century. You can't go around the world and just plant flags and say 'We're claiming this territory', said Canadian Foreign Minister Peter MacKay."

The Canadians deploy the Canadian Rangers for sovereignty patrols [SOV PATS], and the Russians deploy warships. How much different from the 15th century is it? Maybe not so different after all?



Sunday, July 13, 2008

La Grande Armee

This is coolbert:

Leon Degrelle is not correct when he says that the German Waffen SS in World War Two [WW2] constituted the first Pan-European military army? Napoleon too, was able to muster, at his command, a Pan-European force, but over 100 years earlier [1812]. A response to the realization that an enormous number of troops would be required to bring the war with Russia to a successful conclusion.

From the wiki entry:

"At its [La Grande Armee] height in 1812, consisted of 554,500 men:

• 300,000 Frenchmen and Dutchmen
• 95,000 Poles
• 30,000 Italians
• 24,000 Bavarians
• 20,000 Saxons
• 17,000 Westphalians
• 20,000 Prussians
• 35,000 Austrians
• 15,000 Swiss
• 3,500 Croats

Among the many contingents of La Grande Armee in addition to the normal French army units we find [taken from the appendix to the book, "The Russian Campaign"]:

* 3rd Corps - - Consisting in part of troops from Wurttemberg. [German]

* 4th Corps - - Consisting in part of the - - Italian Royal Guard, Italian Division, Italian Light Brigade, and the cavalry of the Italian Royal Guard. [Italian]

* 5th Corps - - Consisting of troops from Poland.

* 6th Corps - - Consisting of troops from Bavaria. [German]

* 7th Corps - - Consisting of troops from Saxony. [German]

* 8th Corps - - Consisting of troops from Westphalia. [Germany]

* 10th Corps - - Consisting in part of troops from Prussia. [German]

* Austrian Corps - - Consisting of troops exclusively from Austria. [Austrians, obviously. This particular Corps was a named Corps and not a numbered one. Counts as an eleventh Corps!]

* From the 3rd and 4th Corps of the Cavalry Reserve: Rosnitzky (Polish) and Thielmann (Saxon).

Please keep in mind that Germany, Italy, and Poland did not exist as the entities we understand today. At the time of Napoleon, were principalities, city-states, lesser kingdoms and dukedoms, etc. NOT having the same status as the modern nation-state. Think rather of ethnic and cultural entities. Bavaria, Saxony, Wurttemberger, Westphalia, for example, sharing a somewhat identical culture and speaking vary dialects of German as spoken at the time!

For the invasion of Russia, Napoleon had eleven corps under his command. So it can be seen that a significant portion [five of the eleven Corps] of the force the Emperor was able to marshal for the invasion of Russia did NOT consist of French troops.

It is also worth noting that the French First Corps consisted totally of French soldiers, five divisions and two light brigades worth, 65,000 men, under the command of the most ablest of French commanders, the Marshal Prince of Eckmuhl [Marshal Davout]. This was the main striking force of the French Army?

Napoleon demanded, expected, appreciated foreign contingents, and used them, but at the same time concentrated his own French soldiers where they would be most effective? The most reliant troops with the most reliant commander, first and foremost [that is in part why they are called the FIRST CORPS!!]



Saturday, July 12, 2008

Hot Intel Flash

This is coolbert:

Thanks here to Harry at KBT Sharkhunters:

"Our S.E.I.G. Agent MARCONI is a radio intercept 'Spook' and sends this":

"'I have come across some very interesting monitorings of our radio group, which seem to point to a revival in the old Cold War . . . Initial analysis points to a jamming (from a Russian source) of various HF (Short Wave) frequencies used by the USAF for communications worldwide. As you know, the EAMs are passed via this link, although they doubtless have others.'"

EAM! Emergency action messages. USAF [United States Air Force] messages sent to SIOP units on 24 hour alert. Nuclear equipped units ready to go at a moments notice.

Military units operationally deployed as part of the Single Integrated Operational Plan [SIOP]. Primarily, in the case, of the USAF, the B-52 bomber force armed with a variety of nuclear weapons. On standby-alert. NOT a lot of bomber aircraft, but a sufficient number to do more than adequate damage to the opposition if necessary.

The Cold War is still not over? Has renewed with a vigor that was not felt to be possible not so long ago? Someone is jamming those frequencies used by the the U.S. nuclear capable force? Russians are to blame? NOT a good sign?



Friday, July 11, 2008


This is coolbert:

From the Chicago Tribune Metro section, yesterday:

2-year term in O’Hare smuggling plot."

Man took money to skirt security."

“A former worker at O’Hare International Airport who pocketed payoffs to help smuggle cash and military equipment out of the country was sentenced Wednesday to 2 years in Prison.”

“[Riad Skaff, 69] pleaded guilty last year to bypassing security at O’Hare on four occasions to help and undercover federal agent smuggle nearly $400,000 in cash, night-vision rifle scopes and goggles and a device that jams cell-phone calls.”

“Between 1999 and his arrest in early 2007, The LEBANON native worked as a ground services coordinator for an Air France contractor, giving him unlimited access to O’Hare’s international terminal.”

“Skaff had never before been accused of a crime and didn’t realize he was threatening U.S. interests.”

“This man had: ‘access even to jet ways and the tarmac, without being subject to inspection’”

Skaff was quite willing and able to accept from an undercover agent - - money - - in exchange to smuggle items - - that could potentially assist jihadis?!



Skaff is from Lebanon. Alarm bells going off here all over the place??!! A connection to Hezbollah could have been readily established? Potentiality for damage very profound in cases such as this. A Hezbollah trained “foot soldier”, THE BEST LIGHT INFANTRY IN THE WORLD, using Skaff and his position, would be able to gain access where none would be assumed to be possible!?

Hezbollah light infantry!! Able to perform well at a lot of non-military tasks, undercover, alone, without a lot of direction - - to accomplish the mission!! Trained, motivated, versatile, flexible, resourceful persons.

I am going overboard here? Skaff has never been alleged to have any link to Hezbollah!! But, his case is indicative of what could happen?! Even a mere baggage handler, shuffling duffle bags around, has a lot of opportunities to commit a lot of mayhem. Or support those that are going to commit a lot of mayhem. Take your pick!

I do know that in the aftermath of 9/11, the fine-tooth-comb of background checks was conducted with regard to airport facility employees. Looking for hidden criminal records, illegal aliens, stolen ID, etc. A number of illegal aliens, including the notorious Elvira Arellano, were caught and eventually deported. Contract workers working for out-sourced companies.

Sting operations of the sort directed at Skaff are now a common part of life for airport workers? MUST BE TOO!!?? All it takes to bring down a commercial airliner is ¼ pound of C4 explosive!! Can’t take chances here!!



Thursday, July 10, 2008

Miscellany I.

This is coolbert:

"Hard in training, easy in battle!!" - - motto of the Romans!!

Here concerning the course that British Special Air Services [SAS] prospective candidates go through as part of their selection process:

"United Kingdom Special Forces Selection"

A selection process which includes:

"Combat survival and Resistance to Interrogation" (4 weeks)

Live off the land - - behind enemy lines - - pursued by the enemy in some instances - - and able to resist interrogation if captured.

I find this part of be of particular interest:

"Personnel undertake advanced survival training, escape and evasion and resistance to interrogation training. The test stage for this training phase requires the candidates to undergo an evasion exercise, dressed in greatcoats to restrict movement"

A greatcoat, also known as a watch coat, is a large overcoat typically made of wool designed for warmth and protection against the elements . . . It was popular in the 15th Century as a military uniform and casual wear for the wealthy, issued for inclement weather by most Armed Forces right up until the last quarter of the 20th Century."

Pursued by friendlies [use that term friendly advisedly!!] attempting to evade capture. Just as if enemy forces are after you! This sort of "exercise" can go on for days. You are on your own, having trained and experienced personnel "on your tail"!!

[pursuers that are part of the British Special Forces Support Group!! Analogous to the U.S. Army rangers.]


NOT for making your task easy. But that is the idea! To make the effort of evasion more difficult by having your wear a heavy, hot, confining, restrictive garment that impedes your movement to some degree. I guess the idea is - - if you can evade capture while wearing the greatcoat, you are capable of evasion under any circumstances??!!


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Tuesday, July 08, 2008


This is coolbert:

Here, in a nutshell, are the various nations and agencies [military/intelligence/secret service/security/police] that have employed enhanced interrogation techniques ["the methods"] since the time of World War Two [WW2].

NOT torture as generally, ordinarily, and commonly understood? NO breaking of the fingers in both hand, pulling out of teeth or fingernails, NO red-hot ramrod inserted into the fundament, etc?

"Fundament - - 2. The part of the body on which one sits; the buttocks; specifically (Anat.), the anus. --Hume."

For the purposes of this blog entry, waterboarding is defined as:

"Waterboarding is a [process by which] forced suffocation and inhalation of water . . . the subject experiences the process of drowning and is made to believe that death is imminent."

But, still, "methods" that are controversial, brutal, demeaning, legal [??]!!

* German Gestapo [WW2]: "Verschärfte Vernehmung" . . . German term translated . . . as "enhanced interrogation".

* "Simplest rations."
* "Hard bed."
* "Dark cell."
* "Deprivation of sleep."
* "Exhaustion exercises."
* "Blows with a stick."

* Communists in Korea: [used against American and allied POW]

* "keeping them in filth." [this technique works well on Americans??!!]
* "sleep deprivation."
* "partial sensory deprivation."
* "psychological harassment."
* "inculcation of guilt."
* "group social pressure."

* French military in Algeria: [Le Gengene]

* Isolation and confinement.
* Beating.
* Electric shock and/or waterboarding.

* French DST: [Paris DST (Direction de surveillance territoire) police (roughly analogous to the FBI.)]

* "repeated kicks and punches."
* "exhausting physical exercises."
* "tortured with electric shock, especially on the genitalia" [private parts].
* "waterboarded in a mixture of urine and vomit."
* "tied to hot radiators."

* British in Northern Ireland: [The Five Techniques]

The five techniques were [are]:

* "wall-standing."
* "hooding."
* "subjection to noise."
* "deprivation of sleep."
* "deprivation of food and drink."

* American military techniques [as] taught in the SERE-program: [Survival, Evasion, Resistance, and Escape]

* "Prolonged isolation."
* "Prolonged sleep deprivation."
* "Sensory deprivation."
* "Extremely painful 'stress positions'."
* "Sensory bombardment." (prolonged loud noise and/or bright lights)."
* "Forced nakedness."
* "Sexual humiliation."
* "Cultural humiliation." (such as desecration of holy scriptures).
* "Being subjected to extreme cold."
* "Exploitation of phobias."
* "Waterboarding."

* Chicago Police?

* Chained to a hot radiator in a confined position [stressful] for an extended period.
* Hooded with a smelly, dirty bag over the head. [a typewriter cover]
* Extended period of nakedness in a confined position chained to a hot radiator.

* American CIA in the aftermath of 9/11:

Authorized techniques include:

* "The Attention Grab. The interrogator forcefully grabs the shirt front of the prisoner and shakes him."
* "Attention Slap. An open-handed slap to the face."
* "The Belly Slap. A hard open-handed slap to the abdomen."
* "Long Time Standing. Prisoners are forced to stand, handcuffed and with their feet shackled to an eye bolt in the floor, for more than 40 hours."
* "The Cold Cell." The prisoner is left to stand naked in a cell kept near 50 degrees Fahrenheit (10 degrees Celsius)."
* "Waterboarding."

Anyone care - - to sign - - the statement - - RIGHT NOW!!

Am I being too flippant??!!



Who dares - - wins!!

This is coolbert: " Who dares - - wins!!" [motto of the SAS]

It CANNOT be said that the young men of the British aristocracy shirk their duties to GOD, Queen, and country, whether in time of peace or war.

Sometimes, volunteering for THE MOST dangerous and difficult of military duty, regardless of risk to life and limb. Joining and serving in the British Special Air Services [SAS] regiment. That unit within the British Army analogous to the American Special Forces [SF] and Rangers!!

Young men, of aristocratic rank, titled, proper English gentlemen of means, education, noble rank, station and privilege find the SAS to be A PROPER USE OF THEIR TALENTS? Officers, persons of initiative, daring, highly motivated self-starters, leading small unconventional warfare [UW] units consisting of other men who are also persons of initiative, highly motivated self-starters.

Those from the upper crust and elite status within English society are drawn to the SAS for the stimulus of challenge and leadership of the highest order where it counts in a manner it does not with other military units?

Consider from the wiki entry a smattering of examples for SAS officers:

* "Sir Ranulph Twisleton-Wykeham-Fiennes, 3rd Baronet OBE . . . is an English adventurer and holder of several endurance records. He was the first man to visit both the north and south poles by surface means and the first man to completely cross the Antarctic on foot."

"Fiennes served eight years in the British army . . . [in] the Special Air Service"

"Fiennes . . . is a distant cousin of Britain's royal family."

"Despite suffering from a heart attack and undergoing a double heart bypass operation just four months before, Fiennes joined Stroud again in 2003 to carry out the extraordinary feat of completing seven marathons in seven days on seven continents in the Land Rover 7x7x7 Challenge for the British Heart Foundation"

"Fiennes's career as an author has developed alongside that of an explorer. He is the author of 13 books in fiction and non-fiction."

* "Sir John Jacob "Jakie" Astor MBE . . . a British politician and sportsman and a member of the prominent Astor family."

"Sir Jakie was the youngest child of the 2nd Viscount Astor and his wife, Lady Astor . . . served in the British military during World War II. He was named after his relative John Jacob Astor IV, who perished on the Titanic in 1912."

"He joined [during the Second World War] the Life Guards, but soon transferred . . . to the SAS"

* Major-General Sir Fitzroy Hew Royle MacLean of Dunconnel, 1st Baronet KT CBE . . . a Scottish diplomat, soldier, adventurer, writer and politician."

"In North Africa in 1942, he distinguished himself in the early actions of the newly formed SAS . . . Maclean was a brilliant practitioner in the T.E. Lawrence brand of fighting, and he reported directly to Churchill in Cairo"

* "Major Randolph Frederick Edward Spencer Churchill . . . was the son of British Prime Minister Winston Churchill and his wife Clementine."

"During World War II, Churchill . . . was attached for a time to the newly formed Special Air Service (SAS), joining their CO, David Stirling, on a number of missions behind enemy lines in the Libyan Desert."


[contrast the service in WW2 of Randolph with the Vietnam War duty of Albert Gore. Gore, trained as a supply clerk, served for four months in Vietnam, working as a journalist, all the while accompanied by a bodyguard!!]

* "Anthony Henry Fanshawe Royle, Baron Fanshawe of Richmond KCMG (27 March 1927 – 28 December 2001) . . . A son of Sir Lancelot Royle . . . educated at Harrow and RMA Sandhurst. He joined the Life Guards and subsequently the SAS. He contracted polio on his way to Malaya and was invalided back to UK and spent a year in an iron lung." [after his SAS service and the year in an iron lung, was still able to lead a long and productive life!!]

* "George Patrick John Rushworth Jellicoe, 2nd Earl Jellicoe, KBE, DSO, MC, PC, FRS (4 April 1918 – 22 February 2007) was a British politician and statesman, diplomat and businessman." [son of the chap who commanded the British fleet at Jutland - - eh wot!!]

"sailed (31 January 1941) to the Middle East . . . Served with L Detachment . . . which was the nucleus of the SAS."

* "John Douglas Slim, 2nd Viscount Slim . . . is a British peer and soldier . . .
The son of the 1st Viscount Slim [Bill Slim of the Arakan] . . . He entered the Special Air Service in 1952."

* Simon Mann - - "Simon Mann's father, George Mann, captained the England cricket team in the late 1940s and was heir to the Watney Mann brewing empire that is now part of Diageo. George's father (Simon's grandfather) Frank Mann, also captained the England cricket team in 1922/23."

Mann does come from a family of wealth, station, and privilege, although NOT of noble rank? Did not stop him from becoming a serving officer in the SAS.

"became a member of the SAS and served in Cyprus, Germany, Norway and Northern Ireland before leaving the forces in 1985."

Young American men from the wealthy upper class of the U.S. are also drawn to military service of the toughest, most dangerous and difficult sort? Special Forces [SF], Rangers, Marines, etc.? I think NOT!! Too bad!!



Monday, July 07, 2008


This is coolbert: Simon.

"Mann sentenced for E Guinea plot"

Here is an English bloke who is in deep doo-doo.

Doo-doo = shit/crap/merde'!

Simon Mann. British special operations veteran and "mercenary who has found himself, at age 56, in a situation for which their is no possible good outcome.

"Simon Mann (born 26 June 1952) is a security expert, mercenary and former British Army officer, and South African citizen extradited to Equatorial Guinea on 1 February 2008, against which he is accused of leading a failed coup d'etat".

NOW, has not only been extradited but has been convicted and sentenced to a very long prison term that is tantamount to a death sentence.

"On July 7, 2008 Mann was jailed for 34 years and four months in prison by a court in Equatorial Guinea."

"Former British soldier Simon Mann has been sentenced to 34 years and four months in jail by an Equatorial Guinea court for his role in a 2004 coup plot."

Equatorial Guinea. A very small country on the west coast of Africa. A nation awash in oil wealth. Ruled for decades by a despotic and cruel dictator, a man ruling with an iron hand.

It was the desire - - of various parties - - including the son [Mark] of Lady Thatcher, to overthrow the dictator and put a more benevolent regime in power?

Mercenaries - - led by Simon Mann, would accomplish the task, with a minimum of fuss and effort? A plan that backfired with harsh consequences for the "mercs"!

Mann is the archetype commander of what are referred to as "white companies". Quasi-military private concerns that do dirty work others are unable or unwilling to do.

Mann has been associated with "mercenary" concerns such as:

* Sandline International . . . a private military company

* Executive Outcomes . . . a private military company

The current international law governing mercenaries is harsh and unforgiving:

Under Article 47 of Protocol I (Additional to the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949, and relating to the Protection of Victims of International Armed Conflicts) it is stated in the first sentence 'A mercenary shall not have the right to be a combatant or a prisoner of war.'"

Mann is going to need a lot of help to survive, be released, repatriated, whatever!! A man his age with such a sentence in front of him, being held prisoner under the regime of the despot, has almost nothing going in his favor! To obtain release, some very high folks in some very high places are going to have to pay some very big bribes to the right persons, including the dictator!! Simon is from the upper class in England and has friends in the right places? Sure hope so, for his sake!

Simon needs help, and NOW!!



Commentary - - Brainwashing.

This is coolbert:

From a comment to the blog by JS Bolton:

"I read that the brainwashing in the narrow sense was to be ascertained as having been successful, if the subject when freed after having made published 'confessions', still refused to recant them.

Applying this to McCain, say: has he fully recanted his published statements made in captivity, and would he do so today if required to answer on all the particulars which once were published?"

I think that McCain actually has in his military medical record a full psychological exam that was made AFTER he returned from captivity. And he did get a clean bill of health. I think this IS public and has been a subject of discussion? There WAS concern at the time that the American POW captured by the communists in Vietnam HAD BEEN mentally "messed with" in a manner as was seen in Korea?

The ordeal that American POW in Vietnam had to endure was NOT brainwashing in the classical sense as understood in the aftermath of the Korean War?

"Brainwashing (also known as thought reform or as re-education) consists of any effort aimed at instilling certain attitudes and beliefs in a person — beliefs sometimes unwelcome or in conflict with the person's prior beliefs and knowledge."

My impression is that the North Vietnamese/Viet Cong more than anything else wanted confessions, statements, acts of contrition for the international media to be played on televisions world-wide, the American audience being the primary target!! Confessions/statements/acts of contrition that were merely propaganda tools and nothing more!!

That is NOT to say that the communists did NOT recognize the practice of brainwashing and did apply the technique against American [and other nationalities too] POW in Korea. The communists would have readily admitted that their desire was NOT ONLY TO CONTROL THE BODY, THEY ALSO WANTED TO CONTROL THE MIND!!

Applying techniques [the "methods"] well honed with continuous practice on their own people [Soviet and Chinese communist].

"Chosen techniques included: dehumanizing of individuals by":

* "keeping them in filth" [this technique works well on Americans??!!]

* "sleep deprivation"

* "partial sensory deprivation"

* "psychological harassment"

* "inculcation of guilt"

* "group social pressure"

Coercive measures do work to the extent of getting individuals to make the statement or the confession, BUT do not work when the person leaves "the coercive environment".

"the end-result of such coercion remained very unstable, as most of the individuals reverted to their previous condition soon after they left the coercive environment."

"The Chinese did, however, succeed in getting some of the prisoners to make anti-American statements . . . psychiatrists noted that even these measures of coercion proved quite ineffective at changing basic attitudes for most people. In essence, the prisoners did not actually adopt Communist beliefs"

However, here from the book, "George Blake - - Double Agent".

"a portion of the men who expressed their detestation at the practice of brainwashing 'had gained the conviction that reforms of the social and economic system of the West was necessary.' The people had been aware 'of shortcomings in the Western democratic and capitalist system and the method by which they had been given this awareness produced delayed action results after they were released.'"

"'none [of the POW] emerged from the ordeal unscathed.'"

The ordeal in this specific case was the brainwashing conducted by communist forces against allied POW in Korea. Even those that apparently resisted and were successful in doing so nonetheless were effected in a major way by what happened to them!!

In the case of John McCain, I think we can rest easy.



Sunday, July 06, 2008


This is coolbert:

From my previous blog entry concerning the interrogation "methods" used in Gitmo as based upon what occurred to American POW's in Korea:

"What the trainers did not say, and may not have known, was that their chart had been copied verbatim from a 1957 Air Force [U.S.] study of Chinese communist techniques used during the Korean War to obtain confessions, many of them false, from American prisoners."

"Methods", as used by the communists in Korea to elicit confessions, many [if not most all of them] false.


"Methods" as used by the communists against American POW's in Korea that WENT FAR BEYOND INTELLIGENCE GATHERING AS COMMONLY UNDERSTOOD!!

Experimentation of a nature only usually associated with the German Nazi and Dr. Mengele of Auschwitz infamy!!

Here from the 1996 testimony before Congress by the Czech defector Senja:

"and their use for various communist nuclear, biological, chemical and mind-control drugs experiments"

"In brief, hundreds [American POW's] were used in Korea and in Vietnam as human guinea pigs."

"we [Czechs] received instructions from Moscow to build a military hospital in North Korea. The advertised purpose of the hospital was to treat military casualties. But this was only a cover, a deception. The Top Secret purpose of the hospital was to experiment on American and South Korean POWs."

"The POWs were used as bodies for training military doctors in field medicine --- for example treating serious wounds and conducting amputations."

"The POWs were used to test the effects of chemical and biological warfare agents and to test the effects of atomic radiation."

"The Soviets also used the American GIs to test the physiological and psychological endurance of American soldiers. They were also used to test various mind control drugs"

"The Americans and South Koreans were very important to the Soviet plans because they believed it was essential to understand the manner in which different drugs, and chemical and biological warfare agents, and radiation affected different races and people who had been brought up differently; for example on better diets."

"The Soviets also wanted to know whether there were differences in the abilities of soldiers from different countries to stand up to the stress of nuclear war and keep on fighting."

Many of those American POW's [not all of course, but many] were the cream of the crop, so to speak. The very elite of American youth, the fighter pilot. A person at the very peak of physical and mental perfection, highly trained and educated, chosen especially with aggressive performance in mind!!

I am sure Soviet intelligence and those doctors associated with same salivated with enjoyment at the opportunity to EXPERIMENT on American subjects who represented the elite within the American military and American society as a whole.

Find out to what extremes an American fighter pilot could be pushed before he "breaks"! Physical and psychological limits vary from culture to culture and nationality to nationality!!?? Experimentation on Americans taken POW in Korea allowed the Soviets to establish a baseline of experience that could be useful in case of a general war with the U.S. So must have been the thinking?

According to Senja, this sort of thing occurred in Vietnam and Laos also? I know that many POW from Laos [the undeclared bombing that went on all during the Vietnam War] WERE NEVER ACCOUNTED FOR IN ANY MANNER!! These persons too were subjected to experimentation of a hideous nature!!??



Saturday, July 05, 2008

Berlin Airlift.

This is coolbert:

"lieutenants think tactics, generals think logistics!!"

Sixty years ago now, the Berlin Airlift had commenced.

A crisis with profound ramifications:

* The first battle of the Cold War!

* An end to whatever lingering animus still existed between the occupying Allied powers and those German nationals living under their [allies] control!!

"an·i·mus - – noun 1. strong dislike or enmity; hostile attitude; animosity."

"The Berlin Blockade (June 24, 1948 – May 11, 1949) was one of the first major international crises of the Cold War."

"On June 12, 1948 the Soviet Union declared that the Autobahn, leading into Berlin from West Germany, was "closed for repairs." Three days later, road traffic between the sectors was halted, and on June 21 all barge traffic into the city was stopped. Finally, on June 24 the Soviets announced that due to "technical difficulties" there would be no more rail traffic to or from Berlin. The following day, they announced that the Soviet sector would not supply food to Berlin's western sectors"

An attempt to starve the allied occupied sectors of Berlin into submission. An attempt that would be countered by a massive airlift of hitherto unimagined proportions!


"646 tons of flour and wheat, 125 tons of cereal, 64 tons of fat, 109 tons of meat and fish, 180 tons of dehydrated potatoes, 180 tons of sugar, 11 tons of coffee, 19 tons of powdered milk, 5 tons of whole milk for children, 3 tons of fresh yeast for baking, 144 tons of dehydrated vegetables, 38 tons of salt and 10 tons of cheese. In total, 1,534 tons were needed daily to keep the over 2 million people alive. Additionally, the city needed to be kept heated and powered, which would require another 3,475 tons of coal and gasoline."


Originally solely a British and American operation [The Airlift], later included French aircraft and aircrews from a multiple number of nations.

"Alongside the British and U.S. personnel were aircrews from Australia, Canada, New Zealand and South Africa."


German nationals to include:

* "Crews unloading [the aircraft] and making repairs at the Berlin airports"

* "ex-Luftwaffe ground crews [maintaining aircraft].

* "Women construction workers building a new runway."

Allied aircraft running the Soviet gauntlet were subject to, and had to endure, a variety of measures thrown at them by the Soviets. Measures to interfere with the aircraft while in flight, even to the extent of causing crashes if possible!!

"Starting on August 10, they [Soviets] started harassing aircraft in the Airlift, and after one year, 733 incidents had been reported."

Measures to include:

* "Soviet fighters to buzz the cargo aircraft"

* "shoot into the air near them [intercepting Soviet fighters.]"

* "Balloons were released in the corridors"

* "flak [anti-aircraft artillery] was fired randomly"

* "searchlights were shone on the aircraft."

* "a fake radio beacon on the same frequency as Tempelhof"


There is a melodramatic but very good movie of the Airlift from the period [1950]. Called "The Big Lift"! If you have not seen it, I highly recommend!

"Experiences of two Air Force sergeants during the 1948 Berlin Airlift."

It should be obvious that the Soviets NEVER thought the allies would act in such a resolute manner as they did. OR, that the airlift could be successful. Those persons still alive from sixty years ago that flew in the airlift have a lot to be proud of. Stood tall when it counted!!



Thursday, July 03, 2008

This is NEWS??!!

This is coolbert:

From the Chicago Tribune yesterday:

"Expert reveals origins of Gitmo tactics."

"Washington - - The military trainers who came to Guantanamo Bay in December 2002 based an entire interrogation class on a chart showing the effects of 'Coercive Management Techniques' for possible use on prisoners, including 'Sleep Deprivation,' 'Prolonged Constraint' and 'Exposure'."

"What the trainers did not say, and may not have known, was that their chart had been copied verbatim from a 1957 Air Force [U.S.] study of Chinese communist techniques used during the Korean War to obtain confessions, many of them false, from American prisoners."

"The 1957 article from which the chart was copied was titled 'Communist Attempts to Elicit False Confessions From the Air Force [U.S. ] Prisoners of War'"

As made public during:

"A Senate Armed services Committee hearing on June 17 that examined how such tactics came to be employed [at Gitmo on the unlawful combatants confined there] . . . a connection pointed out to the New York Times by an independent expert . . . who spoke on condition of anonymity."

It has long been pointed out that the various methods used in SERE training for U.S military personnel are almost identical to those having been used at Gitmo on the jihadi villains. NOT as severe, however, as even what American military personnel endure in training?

SERE training in all it's manifestations is a creation of the U.S. Air Force [USAF]. Captured USAF pilots were most likely to be put through an exhaustive regimen of coercive techniques by a brutal and cruel enemy that has captured them?

"It was created [originally] by the Air Force [U.S.] at the end of the Korean War but was expanded to the Army and the Navy during the Vietnam War. The majority of students are aircrew members."

These use of "coercive techniques?" is of course not confined merely to the U.S. military. The communists in various wars, French in Algeria, British in Northern Ireland, and the Germans in World War Two [WW2] used the "methods".

[and used by police forces too. The infamous Chicago police commander Burge was familiar with "coercive methods" and did employ? Restraints and confined position, the typewriter cover over the head, etc.]

The U.S. Senate is ONLY NOW coming to grips where these "techniques and methods" have come from?

My intuitive reaction to hearing about Gitmo and Abu Ghraib is that Israeli interrogators were perhaps on the scene advising or giving recommendations. Having an intimate understanding of what works on the Islamic mind-set [fear and loathing of dogs, fear of sexual humiliation] is a speciality of the Israeli? I would have to think so!!



Wednesday, July 02, 2008


This is coolbert:

This item catches my attention immediately:

From the Chicago Tribune:

Across the Nation:

"Writer claims to have killed soldier"

"Fayetteville, N.C. - - A pregnant soldier [Spec. Megan Touma, 23 a soldier at Ft. Bragg] lay in dead in the bathtub. Reportedly scrawled on the motel-room mirror in lipstick was a cross hair design - - the same symbol contained in a letter that arrived a the local newspaper four days later."

"'The following is to inform that I am responsible for the dead body.' The typewritten letter read."

"At the bottom was the same drawing used a generation ago by San Francisco's Zodiac Killer."

Almost four decades later, the Zodiac Killer has returned??!! And - - in of all places - - Fayetteville, NC.??!!

The Zodiac Killer, one of the most notorious serial killers of them all, has made a reappearance? Is again on the rampage? Surely we hope NOT!!

"The Zodiac Killer is a serial killer who operated in Northern California in the late 1960s. His identity remains unknown. The Zodiac coined his name in a series of taunting letters he sent to the press. His letters included four cryptograms (or ciphers), three of which have yet to be solved."

Having terrorized the San Francisco [SF] bay area in the late 1960's, Zodiac for some unknown reason disappeared and has been presumed long gone. This latest killing may just be a copycat murder by another cold-blooded, murdering individual who has seen the recent movie about Zodiac?

Or is it Zodiac in the flesh and blood again??!!

Some investigators have long suspected that Zodiac was a military man, specifically a U.S. Navy SEAL!! A trained killer who grow restless from shooting at paper targets or practicing breaking the necks of opponents during combative training. Desired to go actual "meat-hunting" for live, warm-blooded HUMAN prey, and DID SO!!

A serial killer who was never caught, even though his appearance is known [there were survivors who described him in detail to law enforcement]! Famous for doing the "Jack the Ripper" thing, sending taunting letters to the media and public!!

Letters encrypted with a cipher of the Zodiac's own devising. Zodiac was adept in the use of ciphers and cryptography, EVEN TO THE EXTENT OF INTRODUCING DELIBERATE ERROR INTO THE "SECURE" MESSAGES SO THAT THE CRYPTOGRAMS COULD BE READ!!!


[some of the Zodiac's secret messages in crypto have NEVER been read, even by the experts!!]

That the Zodiac for some unexplained reason ended his killing spree can be seen as an indication of a military PCS [permanent change of station]!! Some investigators have concluded this is so!? Does make a degree of sense!

It has long been theorized that Zodiac is Theodore "Ted" Kaczynski. The notorious Unabomber who is known to have resided n the SF bay area while Zodiac was doing his dirty deeds. Ted was a mathematician who ALSO has employed a cipher of HIS own devising to secure his secret journal.

Fayetteville is of course right next to Ft. Bragg. Where the U.S. Army special warfare school [JFKSWCS] is located. Zodiac is a retired military special operations veteran who has settled in the Fayetteville area "to be around friends" and has decided to resume his "career"??!!

A copycat!? Perhaps so. But I bet a lot of law enforcement types are worried about this one!! It would not be without precedent for a serial killer to begin killing again after such a long hiatus. In particular I am thinking of the Wichita BTK [Bind-Torture-Kill] killer!