Is Conservative Treehouse’s “Sundance” a/k/a Mark Bradman An Anti-Semite? A Deep State Sell-Out? You Decide

With all of the comings & goings swirling around National Security Advisor Herbert “HR” McMaster and his attempt to finish purging Trump loyalists from the National Security Council after firing Adam Lovinger Rich Higgins, Derek Harvey, and most recently, Ezra Cohen-Watnick, we tend to agree with Legal Insurrection’s William Jacobsen that we are seeing a “Slow-Motion Coup d’Etat pick[ing] up steam,” with McMaster as the ringleader.

We here at the #VichyGOP blog have always had our suspicions of McMaster, especially after he & SecState Tillerson pushed against CIA Director Mike Pompeo, Deputy Assistant Sebastian Gorka, and Chief Strategist Steve Bannon to certify Iran is “in compliance” with the disastrous Iran nuclear “agreement” for another 90 days for a second time, two weeks ago.

Thursday morning, Chicago native and Israel’s top columnist Caroline Glick dropped a bunker-buster on McMaster, on just how anti-Israel McMaster actually is. Glick wrote:

Many of you will remember that a few days before Trump’s visit to Israel, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu – בנימין נתניהו and his advisers were blindsided when the Americans suddenly told them that no Israeli official was allowed to accompany Trump to the Western Wall.

What hasn’t been reported is that it was McMaster who pressured Trump to agree not to let Netanyahu accompany him to the Western Wall. At the time, I and other reporters were led to believe that this was the decision of rogue anti-Israel officers at the US consulate in Jerusalem. But it wasn’t. It was McMaster.

And even that, it works out wasn’t sufficient for McMaster. He pressured Trump to cancel his visit to the Wall and only visit the Yad Vashem Holocaust memorial — a la the Islamists who insist that the only reason Israel exists is European guilt over the Holocaust.

How does this involve Conservative Treehouse’s Mark Bradman, a/k/a “Sundance” you ask? When I tweeted the Glick post to him, I received this troubling reply to me, and a second reply to another person who also mentioned Glick’s piece:

Doubling down Friday evening, Bradman writes:

After spending 72 hours looking specifically at the motives of those pushing almost identical paragraphs including the catchphrases: “holdovers”, “purging loyalists“, “unfettered access” and “Caroline Glick“; it comes as no surprise to hear the administration perceives the anti-McMasters crowd as having “jumped the shark”… “reached too far”, and “exposed their agenda” etc.
[:]
HR McMaster might not get the Afghanistan policy outcome he prefers, but his position as NSA appears safe; and we won’t have to go to war against Iran to appease his opposition. This looks like a genuine win/win/win. Bannon wins on Afghanistan policy; McMaster wins on Iran policy; America-First wins because we’re not going into another war in either Iran or North Korea.

BINGO!

Nobody wants a war with Iran; but Bradman is posing the same straw man argument Obama and his mind-meld buddy Ben Rhodes used, that it’s binary choice between the disastrous nuclear deal and war. This is the argument McMaster and Tillerson are making to support the deal; but it’s the swamp-drainers such as Bannon, Pompeo, Gorka, as well as the ousted Flynn supporters who are being painted as warmongers.

Remember, it was Flynn, along with many dozens of generals and over 150 colonels who were purged by Obama… While for the last eight years McMaster marinated in the culture.

[At this point, it’s worth noting one of President Trump’s flaws: He picked many in his cabinet out of “Central Casting” opting for strong personalities: “Mad Dog” Mattis, Admiral Kelly for Homeland Security, Generals Flynn & then McMaster as NatSec Advisor, Mike “Number One in his West Point class” Pompeo at CIA, Sebastian Gorka as Special Deputy, leaving Admiral Mike Rogers to run the NSA; and even former Navy SEAL Ryan Zinke at Interior. Although all-but McMaster have been good picks, it’s still worth mentioning this.]

When putrid Wilsonian Progressive John McCain, (who, along with fellow Wilsonian Progressives Hillary, Lindsey Graham, Susan Rice, and Samantha Power enabled the Muslim Brotherhood in the region), highly recommends someone, it’s well worth considering the source before acting on the advice. When Secretary Tillerson wanted to appoint Neocon 2.0 Elliott Abrams, as David “Spengler” Goldman wrote, “an Arsonist as Fire Chief at the State Department,” it was the Jacksonian Nationalist Steve Bannon who pushed back.

Over at The Pentagon, there were already tensions during the transition when Mattis proposed a number of #NeverTrump swamp dwellers to staff his department; but it really blew up in March when we worked Very Hard to sink McCain ally and disastrous Ambassador to Egypt (2011-13) Anne Patterson, who is despised by my friends in that country. From Gatestone Institute in July 2013, US Ambassador to Egypt: “Muslim Brotherhood’s Lackey

Patterson-egypt1

Mideast Egypt
Protesters hold posters against U.S. Ambassor to Egypt, left, Anne Patterson, left, with a message that translates to “crone go home,” and Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi with Arabic writing saying, “participate with the rebels, protesters and demonstrators, general strike June 30” in El-Sa’ah in Damietta, Egypt., Sunday, June 30, 2013. Thousands of opponents and supporters of Egypt’s Islamist president began massing in city squares in competing rallies Sunday, gearing up for a day of massive nationwide protests that many fear could turn deadly as the opposition seeks to push out Mohammed Morsi. (AP Photo/Hamada Elrasam)

Here is Caroline Glick’s entire post:

The Israel angle on McMaster’s purge of Trump loyalists from the National Security Council is that all of these people are pro-Israel and oppose the Iran nuclear deal, positions that Trump holds.

McMaster in contrast is deeply hostile to Israel and to Trump. According to senior officials aware of his behavior, he constantly refers to Israel as the occupying power and insists falsely and constantly that a country named Palestine existed where Israel is located until 1948 when it was destroyed by the Jews.

Many of you will remember that a few days before Trump’s visit to Israel, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu – בנימין נתניהו and his advisers were blindsided when the Americans suddenly told them that no Israeli official was allowed to accompany Trump to the Western Wall.

What hasn’t been reported is that it was McMaster who pressured Trump to agree not to let Netanyahu accompany him to the Western Wall. At the time, I and other reporters were led to believe that this was the decision of rogue anti-Israel officers at the US consulate in Jerusalem. But it wasn’t. It was McMaster.

And even that, it works out wasn’t sufficient for McMaster. He pressured Trump to cancel his visit to the Wall and only visit the Yad Vashem Holocaust memorial — a la the Islamists who insist that the only reason Israel exists is European guilt over the Holocaust.

In May, Adam Lovinger, a pro-Trump national security strategist on loan from the Pentagon’s office of net assessment was summarily informed that his security clearance was revoked. He was fired and escorted from the White House like a spy and put on file duty at the Pentagon.

Lovinger is a seasoned strategic analyst who McMaster hated because he supported India over Pakistan, among other things.

Lovinger has not been told the grounds for his sudden loss of clearance but Mike Cernovich reported that the grounds were that he traveled to Israel for a family bar mitzvah. In other words, there were no grounds for dismissal. His boss at the Pentagon — unbelievably named James Baker, is an Obama hire who hates Trump and supports Obama’s agenda.

Pausing here for a moment, getting an enemy’s security clearance revoked is an old inside-the-beltway “swamp” trick used to take out political enemies. This was used in early February against one of Mike Flynn’s closest deputies on the NSC, senior director for Africa Robin Townley, shortly before The Swamp took out Flynn himself. This was also attempted against Steve Bannon, Sebastian Gorka, and even Jared Kushner.

As for Iran, well, suffice it to say that McMaster supports the deal and refuses to publish the side deals Obama signed with the Iranians and then hid from the public.

The thing I can’t get my arms around in all of this is why in the world this guy hasn’t been fired. Mike Flynn was fired essentially for nothing. He was fired because he didn’t tell the Vice President everything that transpired in a phone conversation he had with the Russian ambassador. Whoopdy doo! Flynn had the conversation when he was on a 72 hour vacation with his wife after the election in the Caribbean and could barely hear because the reception was so bad. He found himself flooded with calls and had no one with him except his wife.

And for this he was fired.

McMaster disagrees and actively undermines Trump’s agenda on just about every salient issue on his agenda. He fires all of Trump’s loyalists and replaces them with Trump’s opponents, like Kris Bauman, an Israel hater and Hamas supporter who McMaster hired to work on the Israel-Palestinian desk. He allows anti-Israel, pro-Muslim Brotherhood, pro-Iran Obama people like Robert Malley to walk around the NSC and tell people what to do and think. He has left Ben (reporters know nothing about foreign policy and I lied to sell them the Iran deal) Rhodes’ and Valerie Jarrett’s people in place.

And he not only is remaining at his desk. He is given the freedom to fire Trump’s most loyal foreign policy advisers from the National Security Council.

One source claims that Trump’s political advisers are afraid of how it will look if he fires another national security adviser. But that makes no sense. Trump is being attacked for everything and nothing. Who cares if he gets attacked for doing something that will actually help him to succeed in office? Why should fear of media criticism play a role here or anywhere for this president and this administration?

Finally, there is the issue of how McMaster got there in the first place. Trump interviewed McMaster at Mara Lago for a half an hour. He was under terrible pressure after firing Flynn to find someone.

And who recommended McMaster? You won’t believe this.

Senator John McCain. That’s right. The NSA got his job on the basis of a recommendation from the man who just saved Obamacare.

Obviously, at this point, Trump has nothing to lose by angering McCain. I mean what will he do? Vote for Obamacare?

If McMaster isn’t fired after all that he has done and all that he will do, we’re all going to have to reconsider Trump’s foreign policy. Because if after everything he has done, and everything that he will certainly do to undermine Trump’s stated foreign policy agenda, it will no longer be possible to believe that exiting the nuclear deal or supporting the US alliance with Israel and standing with US allies against US foes not to mention draining Washington’s cesspool – are Trump’s policies. How can they be when Trump stands with a man who opposes all of them and proves his opposition by among other things, firing Trump’s advisers who share Trump’s agenda?

Scary-McCain

Sundance-Mark_Bradman-antisemite-McMaster

Advertisements

Facebook Promotes #FakeNews

I created and run the half-million member The Deplorables group, which is the largest independent political group on Facebook. One of the biggest problems we have is postings from “fake news” and closely-related “click-bait” websites, often stealing content from legitimate sites such as Daily Caller, Breitbart, and the Washington Examiner and then bombarding the reader with all sorts of garbage ads. This election proved it can be lucrative, even for high schoolers. As the BBC thoroughly documented in December, the epicenter of this crapstorm is Veles, Macedonia.

Imagine our surprise when we were presented on the admin page with this graphic:
Veles-Facebook-The_Deplorables
I circled near the bottom this gem:
We set this location based on your group’s description. It helps people find your group…

That’s right, folks: We have about a half-million members, to the point the number of click-bait & fake news posts triggered their vaunted algorithm to believe this US-centric group is in a small Macedonian city! Yet, Facebook only gives us crude admin tools which causes us unending nightmares with monster groups; and one critical tool — blocking users — does not even work! What we desperately need are the following admin tools, perhaps only released to admins of groups exceeding 50,000 members:

  • Ability to restrict membership by country, or at least geographic area, even if it’s simply to adding new members;
  • Ability to ban postings by website domain;
  • Ability to mass-delete posts by website domain;
  • Ability to block non-members: One common trick among these clowns is to add many fake accounts, then quickly leave the group so we cannot block these “master accounts;”
  • Ability to actually block people: Our block list is at about 9,050, but even though we block people we remove, separately on the member list window and distinct from the reported posts window, the users are simply removed, and can be added back in. Clicking on the Remove post and block user function on either the Reported Posts page or on the article post itself does not work, as the block list is full.

From the BBC: The city getting rich from fake news

Many of the fake news websites that sprang up during the US election campaign have been traced to the small city Veles, in Macedonia, where teenagers are pumping out sensationalist stories to earn cash from advertising.
[:]
“The Americans loved our stories and we make money from them,” [Goran] boasts, making sure I see the designer watch he’s fiddling with. “Who cares if they are true or false?”

Goran – not his real name by the way, he’s not confident enough to reveal that – is one of scores, or probably hundreds of Macedonian teenagers who are behind a cottage industry in the small city of Veles which churned out fake pro-Trump news during the US election campaign.

Goran began putting up sensationalist stories, usually plagiarised from right-wing American sites, last summer.

After copying and pasting various articles, he packaged them under a catchy new headline, paid Facebook to share it with a target US audience hungry for Trump news and then when those Americans clicked on his stories and began to like and share them, he began earning revenue from advertising on the site.

Goran says he worked on the fakery for only a month and earned about 1,800 euros (£1,500) – but his mates, he claims, have been earning thousands of euros a day. When I ask him if he worries that his false news might have unfairly influenced voters in America, he scoffs.

“Teenagers in our city don’t care how Americans vote,” he laughs. “They are only satisfied that they make money and can buy expensive clothes and drinks!”

The digital gold rush has certainly provided a welcome boom for Veles where the average salary is just 350 euros a month; as we drive into the city, I notice some very new and very smart cars while the down-at-heel bars are full of excited young men drinking fancy cocktails. When it was part of the former Yugoslavia, this city was called Titov Veles after the Yugoslavian President Josip Tito – today I’m told it’s been jokingly rechristened Trump Veles.
[:]
The peddling of false news on lookalike American news sites is not illegal but there’s something a little underhand and dirty about the whole game of misleading readers. (more)

~

Our Reply to “‘Enhanced Whack-A-Mole’ Anti-Terror Strategy for Trump” in JAG

‘[Note: We’re big fans of the First Lady of Conservatism, Mrs Phyllis Schlafly; and her making the case for Trump in January, and subsequent full-throated endorsement two months later sealed the deal for us… And damned near toppled her from her Eagle Forum. The #VichyGOP title for our blog is shorthand for who Reagan biographer Craig Shirley referred to as “Vichy Republicans” in his April 2014 essay.]

UPDATE (10/5/2017): Added references to North Korea’s September 2017 thermonuclear detonation, including reference to South Korea’s detection of 133Xe atmospheric gas several days later.
UPDATE (3/30/2017): Former CIA Director James Woolsey published in The Hill How North Korea could kill 90 percent of Americans, where he raises many of the very same points about North Korea’s nuclear weapons program, with some stunning additional conclusions.
Our good friend DECIUS at the Journal of American Greatness has an excellent article suggesting an “Enhanced Whack-A-Mole” Anti-Terror Strategy for Trump. In general, it’s a well-reasoned strategy in between the Wilsonian Progressive — Neocon 2.0 and Buchanan paleo-isolationism worldviews, i.e. borrowing Walter Russell Mead’s 2001 definitions, his proposed policy fits a Jacksonian Nationalist worldview. However, there are a few points where we respectfully disagree.

First, let’s address the “truck driver’s nuclear weapon” and how it’s much more dangerous than DECIUS gives credit:

Did you hear the one about the truck driver who built a nuclear weapon? No, seriously. Now, it’s not a full-on Teller-Ullam two-stage thermonuclear metropolis-killer. It’s merely an exact—exact—copy of Little Boy, the HEU gun-assembly bomb that destroyed Hiroshima on August 6th, 1945. The trucker’s bomb lacks only two things to make it go boom: the cordite priming charges to fire one part of the highly enriched uranium core into the other, and that uranium core itself. The first would be easy to get but dangerous to carry around. The second would be quite hard indeed to get.

Which is probably, at this point, the only reason why a home-made Little Boy or something very much like it has not been detonated at 42nd and Vanderbilt or 17th and G. Don’t kid yourself: they want to. We’re not going to repeat the case for how we know that, because we’re not specialists in it and others are far, far better equipped. If you’re an alt-righter or paleo-isolationist who thinks all we have to do is end the U.S.-Israel alliance, and the whole Muslim terror problem will go away, this Journal will be a consistent source of anger and disappointment to you. They’d still want to nuke us. And, given the material, they could. “The secret of the atomic bomb is how easy they are to make,” our trucker has observed.
[:]
More to the point: a nuclear terror attack would have to have at least two sources: the terrorist group itself and the state that provides the fissile material. The high attribution rate on which the authors hang so much refers only to the terrorist group and not the state. Not that they ignore the state; we’ll consider what they have to say about states shortly. The point is simply that knowing which terrorist group hit you is not the same as knowing which state was behind them. And, to say the least, terrorist groups are much less deterrable than states: their raison d’etre is to commit attacks. They are also much harder to retaliate against, especially without the cooperation of the states that harbor and support them.

We highly recommend any policymaker visit the American Museum of Science and Energy in beautiful Oak Ridge, Tennessee, about two hours east of Nashville, where you will see in the “sliderule days” before computers how simple it actually was to produce enough of two different fissile materials — 235U used in Little Boy over Hiroshima & 239Pu used in Fat Boy over Nagasaki — using magnetic diffusion and an “atomic pile” (reactor), respectively. [Historical footnote: We didn’t know if either technology would work, so we covered our bets and used both… And both worked well]

Let’s first look at 235U production, starting with the infamous “yellowcake” processed ore: We have three basic methods to refine it to 90% weapons grade: The original magnetic diffusion, gaseous diffusion, which was used for commercial production at Oak Ridge for decades, and centrifuges, which is used today. The reason we moved from one to the next method was purely economic efficiency… But all three methods work.

Next, let’s look at 239Pu production: This dangerous material is a byproduct of uranium–powered nuclear reactors, and exists in massive quantities in every nation which has commercial nuclear plants, and even research reactors found on university campuses around the world. [We had a 5 MW one at Georgia Tech starting in the early 60’s right in downtown Atlanta: This is about the size of Israel’s first reactor at Dmona.]

There’s an old joke from the Cold War which applies here:
Q: How long will it take Japan to produce a nuclear weapon?
A: About three days!

What most policymakers overlook is that there’s a difference when you build out a massive enrichment infrastructure such as at Oak Ridge, and a rogue program designed to produce just enough fissile material to make a single bomb. It’s rogue programs like the NoKo – Syrian al-Kibar reactor the Israelis wiped out in 2007, which although had a state sponsor, proved the point that a program just big enough to produce enough material for a single bomb can be within the reach of a well-financed terror group, absent state sponsorship.

Next, DECIUS writes:

Their case for certainty (or near certainty) of attribution rests on two foundations: first, the ability of “nuclear forensics” to determine the origin of a bomb’s fissile material, and second, the very good track record (so far) of fixing attribution for conventional terror attacks.
[:]
Regarding the authors’ first reason for confidence that deterrence will work—nuclear forensics—the authors themselves admit that it is far from perfect. Its success depends in large part on the cooperation of regimes that may have reasons not to want to provide information about their own fissile material programs (either because such states are engaged in proliferation, are supporters of or sympathetic to terrorists, or are anti-“world order” in outlook, or some combination of these). Absent nearly universal cooperation from all states that have mastered the nuclear fuel cycle, nuclear forensics must be considered imperfect.

“Imperfect” is an understatement: It relies on analyzing trace isotopes for a “signature,” looking for things such as 90Sr or 135Cs as byproduct isotopes of a fission detonation; 210Po as a fission trigger; and as was detected by the South Koreans in September 2017, 133Xe for evidence of a tritium booster byproduct of a thermonuclear blast.

[A corollary exists for conventional explosives: Although trace compound “tagging” is used in commercial explosives, home-brew nitroglycerine is just glycerin, and nitric & sulfuric acids.]

However, the “truck driver’s” nuclear weapon probably wouldn’t have any of these yield-boosting additives to trace back to actual, infrastructure-based nuclear programs; and as we posited above, a crude fission weapon can be built even without a state sponsor — Just enough money and yellowcake to kick it into gear.

DECIUS correctly calls out Iran’s 36+ year War against America:

Even when attribution is known, the United States does not always retaliate. One big reason why, since 1979, Iran has remained, with very few exceptions, very aggressive toward U.S. interests—even to the point of killing American soldiers and Marines in Iraq and Afghanistan—is because we so rarely ever hit them back. For example, we didn’t retaliate after either the 1983 Marine barracks bombing in Lebanon or the 1996 Khobar Towers attack in Saudi Arabia. On the occasions when we DO retaliate—such as the 1987-88 actions that sunk half the Iranian navy—the regime’s behavior subsequently becomes much less aggressive and much more circumspect. For a while—until they realize that we have reverted to passive form, as we always do.

However, we believe this statement understates just how pitched in battle the Iranians actually are against us: Their War against us started on November 4th, 1979 when they invaded sovereign American soil when the so-called “revolutionaries” seized our Embassy in Tehran; and this battle against us has continued to this very day, despite the willful blindness of Clinton, Obama, and especially George W Bush. Basically, Iran’s jihad against America oozes out of every pore of their leadership, which is why regime change is crucial: Iran represents an existential threat to the United States itself. More on this later in this article.

Continuing, DECIUS writes:

One other consideration that may seem picayune, but we believe would be relevant in the circumstance. The simplest nuclear bomb to build is, as said, a copy (however inexact) of Little Boy. Without sophisticated ways of “boosting” the yield, its explosive power would be on the order of 15 kilotons. The Hiroshima bomb, for maximum effect, was detonated at an altitude of about 1,900 feet. No terrorist is going to be able to air drop a bomb over Manhattan or Washington. The attack will therefore be a “ground burst” and thus much less devastating, at the same yield, than the Hiroshima bomb.

Three disparate points worth noting:

First, all it takes is a single detonation of a nuclear weapon to “change the world” as we know it, on a scale an order of magnitude larger than it changed on the morning of September 11th;

Second, who said an air burst at 1,900 feet is out of the question? It would be a trivial exercise to buy a twin-engine plane big enough to fly the five ton load on a kamikaze jihad mission. For that matter, you can pick up an old DC-9 or 727 off the Arizona desert floor for just a couple-few hundred thousand.

What’s more, although DC and NYC are relatively hardened with anti-aircraft missiles, the same probably cannot be said for Atlanta, and especially Los Angeles: These cities have airports with approach paths close to the city center, and in the case of LAX, the city has literally “built out” between the two runway pairs… And London’s Heathrow is even worse.

That being said, an air burst need not be directly over Manhattan: An air burst over Newark Liberty’s runway 29 final approach path, which is over Bayonne, would still hit Lower Manhattan & Brooklyn, as you can see from this map:

EWR_Runway-29_Final_Approach_Path

The point we’re trying to make is that an Islamic jihad kamikaze mission need not involve a deviation from routine aviation operations: It can hit completely out of the blue with not even a nanosecond of warning.

What’s more, from an airframe standpoint, even if a plane deviates from its’ flight path and is intercepted with a surface-to-air missile, unless a fuselage fuel tank detonates (as happened from an electrical short in the center tank on TWA 800), the terrorist on board would still have seconds to detonate the weapon, albeit perhaps not at the optimum altitude &/or location… But massively devastating nonetheless. Furthermore, even if the weapon does not detonate, you still have a dirty bomb attack, and if it’s over land the contamination radius would be large, as we’re talking 239Pu or highly-enriched 235U here, folks, and that’s nasty shit.

Third, even a ground burst today would be much more devastating than just the blast damage, as the damage to fragile semiconductor circuits found in every vehicle as well as computer would be destroyed for miles around; and if it’s an air burst, the damage would be even more extensive.

DECIUS continues:

This is why conservative fulmination about the Iran deal is so oversold. Yes, it’s a bad deal and yes the Obama administration lied in selling it. But neither the best deal nor the absence of a deal was going to stop Iran from getting the bomb. A country as big, rich, and sophisticated as Iran—if it really wants nuclear weapons—it will get them sooner or later. Countries much smaller (Israel), poorer (North Korea) and dumber (Pakistan) have managed it. The only way to stop Iran, again, is either to change the regime’s mind or change the regime. The former would have required much tougher sanctions, plus the cooperation of all of all Europe and Russia. We were never going to get that. And even if we had, there’s no guarantee the Iranian regime would have changed its mind. North Korea never has, despite being sanctioned to the hilt for decades. Libya did only when it was caught red-handed importing nuclear materials from Pakistan—mere months after the U.S. armed forces toppled the Iraqi government.

Somewhere out there on the Interwebs I wrote on August 6th, 2005 from Oak Ridge that Iran already had at least one “bomb in the basement,” much as Israel had one definitely by 1967, and possibly as far back as 1956. What’s more, Iran’s nuclear weapons program does not operate in a vacuum: North Korea participates in Iran’s program, much as they participate in Pakistan’s. [Historical timeline point: In her 1994 visit to Pyongyang, Benazir Bhutto’s plane sat on the apron for an extra 45 minutes as they loaded some sort of nuclear equipment — probably centrifuges — into the cargo hold for Abdul Qadir Khan’s weapons program.]

If we may further shock conservative ears, there is a case to be made for the Iran deal. Not its terms or the mendacity with which it was made. But for the deal itself, the ostensible purpose of which is to prevent Iran from getting a nuclear weapon. The only thing short of war that can stop that, as noted, is a change in the Iranian mind. The one thing the Iranian regime wants more than nuclear weapons is full access to the global economy and First-World financial system. (Well, that and its frozen assets back.) The deal paves the way to realizing that dream. But not if they flagrantly flout it. If they do that, all the sanctions—and more—are likely to be re-imposed. Tehran won’t have the Obama spin machine to cover for them for much longer. And whatever you think of Western pusillanimity, betrayed losers tend to react angrily. Even arch-appeaser Neville Chamberlain got mad when Hitler personally humiliated him by invading Poland. (Did you ever think you’d read a Munich reference not intended to urge more war? JAG delivers!)

The deal thus may not stop nuclear development, but it could push it underground, slow it down, make it less intense. To repeat: if Iran wants the bomb, Iran will get the bomb. The question is: does Iran want the bomb badly enough to lose all that it gained through the deal? Only time will tell. One thing we do know is that secret nukes are not that useful. The only “undeclared” nuclear power is Israel, which despite never formally acknowledging (or testing—unless they did) its arsenal has nonetheless managed to let the world “know” that it has nukes. Certainly, Iran could not celebrate the debutante ball of a nuclear power and still enjoy access the OECD economy.

What they could do, however, is keep quietly working on a bomb, get all the way to the finish line—and wait. Wait until the moment when they feel they “need” to go public, until their self-perceived “need” to be recognized as a nuclear power outweighs their assessment of the usefulness of access to the Western economy.

DECIUS’ analysis falls apart, as Iran already has nuclear weapons. What’s more, they have the Sunni as well as Shi’ite terrorist infrastructure in place to detonate one in the United States: Just get the fissile material across our porous southern border, and gather the rest here and assemble it in some abandoned mine away from any radiation detectors. What’s more, because Bush frittered away the Monroe Doctrine, the largest embassy in the Western Hemisphere is… wait for it… Iran’s in Caracas.

Bush had a real chance during the 2002 Venezuelan coup attempt to push Chavez out, which would have been a major win in the Great War on Terror… But, he was too busy masturbating to his twin Iraq and Medicare Part D ($450 billion RX benefit) fantasies to pay attention.

[Historical footnote: It was Bruce Bartlett who blew the whistle on Frist & Bush, as he correctly projected the largest expansion in entitlement spending would be about triple the $160 billion White House figure, and was fired, just as Larry Lindsey was canned for predicting the Iraq war would be at least double the sunny $400 billion cost. Basically, the Medicare D expansion was a sop to the congressional Democrats, in exchange for their support of the Iraq invasion. In other words, the Medicare D expansion is a hidden cost of the Iraq misadventure, and needs to be budgeted accordingly.]

Getting back to the Venezuelan nexus of a potential Islamic terror attack on American soil, the Los Zetas, Siniloa, MS-13 and other drug cartels already have ties to the mideast & Persian terror organizations: These violent gang-bangers certainly are no patriots, and will gladly sell out to the highest bidder.

As we stated above, Iran, especially through its’ Venezuelan proxy, represents an existential threat to the United States.

DECIUS continues:

So what do we do? Here (finally!) we get to the strategy. By all means, keep on with all those non-proliferation efforts. By all means, continue with “target hardening” and counterterrorism efforts at home.

But we also have to take the fight to the enemy. We’ve observed before that the much-maligned Bush-era slogan—fight them there so we don’t have to fight them here—is dead right. Why it should be so controversial remains mysterious—beyond the obvious point that it’s been spot-welded to the neocon democracy project and thus unfairly discredited. In reality, the idea undergirding that slogan is no different than the ancient and eternal principle of the buffer state. All great powers have them. That’s one of the measures of being a great power. Can you force your borders outward, and so fight your battles somewhere other than in your own front yard—or living room?

Another Bush-era slogan was “we don’t want to play whack-a-mole with terrorists.” Condoleezza Rice used to say this in interviews all the time. She meant: no one-offs but instead a grand strategy to remake the region. It’s not enough to win military victories. If that’s all we do, we’ll be fighting jihadis forever because the supply is endless. The only long-term solution is to modernize, democratize and moderate the Greater Middle East. Then and only then can we stop this fighting. And, the people there will be better off and happier, so everybody wins.

The rest of his plan is in the bottom third of the article.

Catch us on Facebook here, and on Twitter here.
Continue reading “Our Reply to “‘Enhanced Whack-A-Mole’ Anti-Terror Strategy for Trump” in JAG”

Vichy Republicans and the #VichyGOP Hashtag

The #VichyGOP title for our blog is shorthand for who Reagan biographer Craig Shirley referred to as “Vichy Republicans” in his excellent April 2014 essay.

We’re big fans of the First Lady of Conservatism, Mrs Phyllis Schlafly; and her making the case for Trump in January, and subsequent full-throated endorsement two months later sealed the deal for us… And damned near toppled her from her Eagle Forum.

Also, just as Mrs Schlafly despised Governor George Romney as part of the “Kingmaker class,” along with governor’s Bill Scranton (PA) and Rockefeller, we despise his son Mitt as every bit as rotten. His dad helped lose the 1964 election, and not only did he lose the 2102 election, he’s trying to lose 2016 for us as well.