Sunday, June 26, 2016

Again, This is a Long War

Max Boot discusses Orlando and our response to that attack. The way a hate-filled Islamist ideology intersects with America's free society is certainly complicated and there are a lot of issues we should rationally discuss. We must discuss intelligence, passive security, war and use of force abroad, civil liberties, and the nature of Islam and how it responds to jihadi wars on Islam and non-Moslems.

You can agree or disagree on individual points. But the most important part of this war on (jihadi) terror is the Islamic world's reaction to Islamism:

The ultimate solution to the rise of Islamist terrorism must involve a revolution of thinking in the Islamic world similar to the Reformation in Europe. The U.S. has a limited capacity to bring that about but must do what it can by backing Muslim moderates—and, yes, they do exist. Tunisia has become a democracy, and its Ennahda party has eschewed Islamism—that is, religious rule—to become a “Muslim Democratic” party, echoing Europe’s Christian Democratic parties. That is a small but hopeful development.

While we wait for the gradual transformation of the Muslim world, we must combine enhanced efforts at domestic security with enhanced efforts to deny terrorists safe havens abroad. Unfortunately, a great many places—Pakistan, Afghanistan, Iran, Iraq, Syria, Libya, Yemen, Somalia—now fit this description.

It is a big task to clean up such deeply troubled places, and it won’t be done by invading country after country. The long war ahead will be fought by a variety of means, some of them military, many not. Our challenge resembles the Cold War, another multigenerational struggle waged with many different allies, not only on battlefields but also in the battle of ideas. We can only hope that someday the war on terror will end just as peacefully.

I've said this again and again, using force abroad is really a holding action to protect us while the Islamic world sorts out their civil war that will result in Islam wither rejecting or embracing Islamism as the definition of what Islam is. We are collateral damage in that civil war.

That is why I had hope for the Arab Spring--and still have hope in the long run despite the massive failure in the short run--which showed that Arab Moslems were moving beyond the traditional choices of autocrats or mullahs for governing Moslem-majority states by raising the option of democracy.

We have a role in helping Moslems living under autocrats, mullahs, and elected rulers in fledgling democracies, that democracy means more than establishing a dictatorship of the majority. We must help them understand that democracy means rule of law and the protection of minority rights and the assurance that exploitation, jail, death, or exile aren't the price you pay for losing an election. Just wait for the next one and work within the rules in the meantime to protect your interests.

Let's Review European Union Official Racism

So the Leave voters in Britain are being labeled racist for wanting their democracy to endure rather than submit to a continental empire? Let's go back a whole 4 years to review a European Union promotional video.

Remember the EU promotional video "Growing Together?" This is what the Guardian had to say about it:

The European commission has been forced to withdraw a high-budget video promoting the EU amid accusations that it depicts other cultures in a racist manner.

A row broke out after the enlargement directorate of the European commission, which is responsible for the expansion of the EU, released a video clip that was designed to appeal to young voters.

The video, entitled Growing Together, features a white woman dressed in yellow – the colour of the stars of the EU – walking calmly through a warehouse. As a gong sounds, she looks behind her as an aggressive Chinese-looking man shouting kung fu slogans jumps down in the style of the film Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon.

As he moves towards her, an Indian-looking man in traditional dress wielding a knife levitates towards her. He is a master of kalaripayattu, a martial art from the southern Indian state of Kerala. As she deals with him, a black man with dreadlocks cartwheels towards her in the style of capoeira, the Brazilian martial art.

Racist Euro elites appealing to young, racist voters, eh?

While withdrawn, it is at the Guardian story for now. And on Youtube:



Remain voters might want to refrain from lecturing Leave voters.

If the EU did that video today, I'm sure the threat they'd portray would be an English man, a Welsh man, and some random old white guy.

As an aside, I know I commented on this video back then but (sadly for you, I'm sure) I can't find the post.

UPDATE: Ah, here it is. For what it's worth.

UPDATE: Ironically enough, the EU failed to protect the European women from mobs of refugees and migrants who in fact surrounded the European women.

Which probably was a factor in Britain voting to leave the EU and its so-called protections.

Stronger in Europe, indeed.

Saturday, June 25, 2016

Remembering What is Worth Defending

As much as I enjoyed the sad ideological isolation of this lefty on the Brexit issue, this complaint from a younger British voter is too much:

"Essentially people much, much older than us — and who won’t be around for the consequences — are giving us a future we don’t want," added Jack Lennard, who just finished his undergraduate degree in archeology and anthropology.

Those darned old people with their experience and all that. Maybe rather than being elders punishing younger people, those older Britons who voted in large numbers to leave the European Union remember more about threats to freedom and the price you have to pay to escape authoritarian rule, eh?

Maybe those older people have memories of events beyond the winner of the Eurovision 2015 contest, hmmm?

Maybe these older Leave voters have a better grasp than the younger set that voted in lockstep to welcome their new insect Brussels overlords?

Those young people should be glad you can escape the EU empire with just a vote. How long will the EU allow that flaw in their growth plan for "ever closer union" last?

May ISIL Believe the Worst

We really aren't this stupid:

The question of why the Internet still works in the Islamic State's stronghold of Raqqa, Syria, came up during the House Armed Services Committee hearing on the military’s cyber operations yesterday, and the answer was less than reassuring. ...

Rep. Martha McSally, a retired fighter pilot, posed the question to the assistant secretary of defense for homeland defense and global security, Thomas Atkin[.] ...

Atkin noted that he would give a more detailed answer during the closed-door hearing in the afternoon, but answered in general terms. “Certainly going after specific nodes to hamper and stop the use of the Internet by ISIS is important, but we also have to respect the rights of citizens to have access to the Internet,” he said. “So it’s a careful balance, even in Raqqa.”

But it helps to act like we are that bone-headed. Outside of closed-door hearings.

And it helps that much of the right is so against our president (and rightly so) that the worst explanation based on idiocy and blindness seems perfectly rational.

I have no doubt that leaving the Internet up in Raqqa provides us with lots of intelligence as ISIL uses the Internet. If not, we'd take it down.

Perhaps I'm a boundless optimist, but I don't believe the open-door answer.

Mind Bottling

How anyone--let alone the reporters themselves--can deny that our media is overwhelmingly biased towards liberals is beyond me.

Don't Aspire to Perfect Victories

The Iraqis have defeated ISIL in Fallujah, although resistance will no doubt take weeks to snuff out. This is a victory over jihadis and don't pretend otherwise in the bizarre quest for the Perfect Victory.

The fact that ISIL is still resisting in Fallujah does not erase the fact that the Iraqis liberated the city:

Iraqi forces closed in on the last neighbourhood of Fallujah still held by the Islamic State group Thursday while aid groups struggled to deliver relief to desperate civilians.

A month into a major offensive against one of the jihadists' most emblematic bastions, elite forces were close to establishing full control over Fallujah.

"I can say that more than 80 percent is controlled by our forces," Lieutenant General Abdulwahab al-Saadi, the operation's overall commander, told AFP in Fallujah.

This went a lot more rapidly than many analysts were saying based on ISIL vows to fight to the death.

I didn't think that analysis was correct given the past 6 months of ISIL in Iraq not looking like its fighters wanted to fight to the hurt let alone to the death.

Some will fight to the death in Fallujah. But not enough were willing, very clearly.

Yet somehow, some analysts are saying that victory in Fallujah is somehow bad:

ISIS is on the way out, but the Shia militias are here to stay, and they may be the greatest threat to Iraq’s future as a country and nation.

“More generally, most experts I know worry more about Iraq’s political stability than about ISIS’s ability to hold Fallujah or Mosul indefinitely,” argued Michael O’Hanlon, another senior fellow at Brookings. “We have lots and lots of work to do—and the Iraqis have even more.”

Yes, the pro-Iran death squads masquerading as militias are a problem. They became a problem after we left Iraq in 2011 and stopped trying to oppose Iranian efforts to dominate Iraq. And the militias became more of a problem as Iraqis worried we wouldn't do enough to defeat ISIL when we returned to Iraq in 2014.

And while I agree that the pro-Iran militias are a long-term problem and that ISIL is losing ground in Iraq, ISIL is the problem right now. It is nonsense to say that ISIL really isn't a problem because they are "on the way out" because without efforts to defeat ISIL, they would not be on the way out.

And the militias are not "here to stay" unless we fail to re-defeat them as we did by 2008 between the American offensive in Sadr City and the Iraqi offensive in Basra.

So yes, disbanding those militias and reducing Iran' influence in Iraq is vitally important. This should provide a motive not to ignore ISIL on the assumption that they are magically "on the way out" as if no action is required to ensure that. It should be a motive to also defeat and disband the pro-Iran Shia militias as part of the plan for victory in Iraq War 2.0 by staying in Iraq after ISIL is defeated rather than leaving in 2011 after the defeat of al Qaeda.

Seriously, this line of thinking seems to hold that we should have left Fallujah in ISIL hands to prevent the Shia militias from abusing Sunni Arab residents of Fallujah.

What the ef do you think ISIL was doing in Fallujah?

As Iraqi forces move through Falluja, the city is yielding the grim remnants of more than two years of Islamic State rule. Beheaded and decaying bodies. Clumps of facial hair from fighters who shaved their beards to blend in with fleeing civilians. A prison where detainees were held in cages suitable for a medium-sized dog.

The forces have found books on Wahhabism, the extreme version of Sunni Islam from which the Islamic State draws inspiration, and on Saddam Hussein, whose rule by fear and secrecy the group has replicated.

And for all the worry about whether Fallujah was really a victory, it was viewed by Iraqis as a source of Baghdad bombings. Perhaps it was not. But it was during our Iraq War so I imagine it was now even though I haven't read anything confirming that suspicion. And the Iraqi government could hardly risk that it was a source of bombings that were killing Iraqis.

And that's aside from the issue of whether it was actually better for Fallujah Sunni Arabs to live under continued ISIL terror rather than risk liberation and contact with pro-Iran Shia death squads.

We have to defeat ISIL. And we have to defeat Iran in Iraq, including their militia hand puppets. Stop fretting that we didn't achieve a Perfect Victory in Fallujah that solves all problems and doesn't lead to other problems.

Work the problems, people.

Friday, June 24, 2016

Living in Their Own Private I Don't Know

The reality-based community is determined to react to the jihadi attack in Orlando as a gun control issue. Behold the tenuous grasp of reality.

Point one on the attacker, Mateen (whose murder spree prompted Congressional sleepovers in the Capitol Building--which even a liberal publication thinks is fairly bold in that it is pretending to be a civil rights sit-in even as it attempts to undermine 5th Amendment rights to eliminate 2nd Amendment rights):

Despite the media’s framing of this as a terrorist attack, we are very clear that this terror is completely homegrown, born from the anti-Black white supremacy, patriarchy and homophobia of the conservative right and of those who would use religious extremism as a weapon to gain power for the few and take power from the rest. Those who seek to profit from our deaths hope we will forget who our real enemy is, and blame Muslim communities instead.

That was from Black Lives Matter. As the author of that piece responds:

In case you didn’t notice, Omar Mateen, an Afghani-American radical gay Muslim registered as a Democrat, was really a right-wing, gay-hating, white conservative. No, Black Lives Matter isn’t crazy at all. Why would you say so?

They aren't based on reality. That aren't even near reality.

Starting from the wrong facts, is it any wonder that moving on to addressing gun control as the solution is so pointless?

Most Americans believe America is submerged beneath a tidal wave of gun violence. A Pew Research poll in 2013 found that 56 percent of Americans thought gun violence had risen in the last 20 years, 26 percent thought it had remained the same, and only 12 percent thought it had fallen. You might be surprised to learn the 12 percent were right.

This decline has taken place despite the expiration (in 2004) of the so-called "assault weapon" ban. And the decline extends to deaths by rifles in recent years, according to that author.

Yet some of our so-called leaders in Congress are throwing a tantrum to vote on things that would have had no effect had they been in place prior to Orlando.

In an age of Google, you have to be very determined to ignore reality. Yet here we are.

By all means, you are free to fight gun ownership rights, patriarchy, homophobia, and supremacy of any sort. Heck, rail against gravity for all I care. Have a freaking ball. It's a free country. (Although you'd have a more target-rich environment fighting those things in a whole bunch of Moslem-majority countries, truth be told.).

But don't pretend those fights have anything to do with preventing the Islamist hatred that led to the Orlando attack and many other atrocities here and around the world where jihadis and their Islamist ideology--not all or even the majority of Moslem communities, as the BLM fools think they are defending--are not contained and defeated.

But that reality is too inconvenient to confront, apparently.

Tips to Instapundit.

The Siren Song of the Littorals Ends

It's always nice when reality reasserts itself over theory.

This is welcome news regarding changes to the Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) program:

The Navy spent hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars to fulfill its need for speed with a new class of fast and agile warships capable of zipping along at highway speeds.

It turns out speed is overrated.

The Navy has learned lessons from the light-and-speedy littoral combat ships: Upcoming ships will trade some speed in favor of more weapons and heavier armor.

I did not understand the notion of speed providing protection close to shores:

I find it amusing that one defense is that survivability is also not getting hit rather than just construction design. With physical survivability so low for the LCS, just what helps them avoid getting hit? Their speed? Get real. Going fast increases the likelihood of being spotted by some sensor or another. And the LCS isn't going to be faster than aircraft, missiles, or helicopters.

And deployed in green or--God forbid even more--brown waters, the LCS will face lots of land-based threats like aircraft, helicopters, missiles, mines, shore-based artillery, tanks with cannons far bigger than the LCS carries, plus small submarines and numerous armed small craft. It is insane to send the LCS into that environment.

The new weapons will include over-the-horizon anti-ship missiles. Also good.

Sea control in blue waters is now a major question, so it is good that we will try to make our ships fight for--and survive--that contest.

When in the Course of Human Events

So the British people have voted to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with the European Union and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them. Good for them.

I had hoped that the polls underestimated the appeal of leaving the EU proto-empire. That may have been the case because the British did indeed vote to leave the European Union:

Britain voted to break away from the European Union, toppling Prime Minister David Cameron and dealing a thunderous blow to the 60-year-old bloc that sent world markets plummeting on Friday.

Cameron announced he would step down to make way for a new leader by early October after voters opted to exit the 28-nation alliance in defiance of his predictions of economic disaster and isolation.

Britons, many of them worried by immigration, decided 52 percent to 48 percent in favour of quitting the bloc, a margin of more than one million votes, according to final results from Thursday's referendum.

I'm relieved. Assuming the Euro-elites in Britain respect the vote. It wouldn't be the first time voters who rejected the EU were ignored.

Britain will remain Britain. The EU won't destroy British military power by draining it to build an EU military that will no doubt be much better at suppressing dissent than stopping Russians, bombing Libya, or fighting in Afghanistan.

In the long run, Britain's economy will be fine. The way Europeans have been eager to make deals with Iran despite the record of the mullahs, I don't think French intentions to punish Britain for leaving will last long.

As for our president's threats to put Britain at the back of the line for trade deals? You already have nukes. Make a few ugly statements and our leader will swoon at the prospect of resetting relations with Britain.

And if the EU persists in being punitive? Well, then Britain can retaliate by aiding the resistance to the EU on the continent:

The European Union risks losing more members, after Britain voted to leave the 28-nation bloc, if it does not reform, Poland's EU minister Konrad Szymanski said on Friday.

I dare say that Britain can cause far more harm to the EU than the EU can inflict on Britain.

As an aside, I wonder if the example of Britain leaving voluntarily will lead the EU to expel less desirable member states to strengthen what remains?

Separation will no doubt be scary for Britain--and complicated. A lot must be done to break away after decades of adapting to being entwined within political Europe. But in time, Britain will find new ways to remain entwined economically with Europe without giving up the freedoms that Britain has created over many centuries. I do believe that those freedoms would have been dangerously eroded under the European Union.

Remember that after our separation from Britain, we found that our trade was suddenly vulnerable to Barbary pirates without the protection of the Royal Navy. We had to learn to stand on our own. And we did.

With NATO channeling British defense efforts, Britain at least doesn't have to worry about a defense gap. And without Britain, the EU independent defense aspirations will be difficult to create.

To the British people, congratulations. But stiff upper lip and all that. The struggle ahead to separate cleanly will be difficult. But by voting to leave the EU, you have voted to remain free.

This could be your finest hour.

UPDATE: Britain didn't wreck Europe--Britain is leading Europeans:

Germany is worried that France, the Netherlands, Austria, Finland and Hungary could also seek to leave the European Union after Britain's vote to quit the bloc, German newspaper Die Welt said on Friday, citing a finance ministry strategy paper.

Which isn't too shocking considering that the European Union isn't terribly popular among Europeans.

The European Economic Community, as a trading bloc, made sense. The political European Union as a proto-imperial state that destroys democracy in the long run never did.

It was only acceptable when a political entity of Europe that might mobilize European military power was the alternative to a Europe conquered by the Soviet Union. Since 1991, that barest reason to risk autocracy has disappeared.

UPDATE: Some Europeans will try to disrupt Britain to punish the British for wanting their independence. So what does Britain have now? As a wise man once said of America, "a republic constitutional monarchy, if you can keep it."

The British must remember that the referendum that declared Brexit is not binding on your rulers, and you rely on your leaders to follow through on this demonstration of popular intent.

Work the problems and be confident that the British can rise up to achieve what they built in the past--Great Britain--without taking orders from some continental with pretensions of power.

And be grateful that the European Union doesn't have tanks to send in to demonstrate the consequences of Britain rejecting the empire.

UPDATE: There is already quite the resistance movement on the continent:

Voters in France, Italy and the Netherlands are demanding their own votes on European Union membership and the euro, as the continent faces a “contagion” of referendums.

EU leaders fear a string of copycat polls could tear the organisation apart, as leaders come under pressure to emulate David Cameron and hold votes.

A "contagion" of free people voting. The horror.

UPDATE: More on continentals wanting the same option to leave.  There is speculation about "Frexit" (France exiting) or "Italeave" (Italy leaving).

But no mention of "Grexit" (Greece exiting) as other stories have mentioned. Honestly, with one of the healthiest of the EU states voting to get out, I wouldn't be surprised if the European Union issue wasn't so much fear that Greece will follow Britain's example as it is that the EU might want to push the weak link of Greece out.

Call it "Grush" (Greece pushed).

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Profiles in Blurrage

House Democrats ended their pajama party in their own House chamber:

A drained and dwindling group of Democrats, some draped in blankets and toting pillows, carried their remarkable House floor sit-in past daybreak Thursday, disrupting the business of Congress in the wake of the Orlando shooting rampage with demands for gun-control votes in an extraordinary scene of protest broadcast live to the world.

But about noon Dallas time, they had decided to end the the sit-in, which had last more than 25 hours.

This is what Democratic leaders gave us in response to the worst jihadi attack against Americans since September 11, 2001. They blurred the real issue of Islamist terrorism for their own political advantage.



Presumably, they all changed out of their onesies and then returned to their seats some dozens of feet away to continue to not do their jobs.

UPDATE: It really is shameful that the Democrats are pretending that undermining due process is a civil rights issue.

UPDATE: Yeah, pretty much. Tip to Instapundit.

Defending the Suwalki Gap is Too Passive

If we're defending the Suwalki Gap, we've screwed up.

The Suwalki Gap is becoming a focal point of our thinking in opposing the Russian military threat to NATO:

The most vulnerable spot in the Western alliance is a 64-mile slice of the Polish border that extends from the Russian exclave of Kaliningrad to Belarus, according to allied officials.

Known as the Suwalki Gap, the narrow land route between Poland and Lithuania has become a growing focus of U.S. military planning, U.S. and allied officials say.

Military officers worry that in the event of a conflict with Moscow, the Russian military could use its forces in Kaliningrad, home to numerous military bases and bristling with advanced missiles, to effectively cut off the Suwalki Gap and sever the Baltic states from the rest of the alliance, they said. U.S. war planners believe the allies could have as little as 72 hours to reinforce the Suwalki Gap before Moscow would be able to effectively block access.

This reality is why I've been opposed to major NATO deployments to the Baltic states. Forces up there could be cut off by a Russian lunge west further south through Poland, just as the Soviets cut off so many German troops there during the Soviet offensive that pushed to Berlin.

Thinking of defending the Suwalki Gap is certainly necessary but it should be the last line of defense.

In case of war with Russia in Europe, the first order of business should be to take that Kaliningrad enclave that threatens the gap from the west. Holding the Suwalki Gap against a Russian military force advancing from Belarus would be a lot easier with a little more depth behind it, no?

And then we have Belarus, which is not part of Russia. So the Russians would have to cross through Belarus to reach the Suwalki Gap from the east. Long before war rears its ugly head, our diplomacy should be keeping this most important piece of territory in Europe out of Russia's hands.

As for the Baltics? We can't really defend them. Our aim has to be to survive and counter-attack and then liberate them.

As for the Suwalki Gap if that last line of defense has to be held, I'd give good money to have a full United States Army old-style armored cavalry regiment there to slow down the Russians and inflict casualties to buy time for help to arrive.

Add another ACR split into component squadron-sized battlegroups screening the Baltic states' borders with Russia.

As long as I'm wishing, add in REFORPOL NATO heavy brigade sets to southern Poland.

I Grapple With Nuance

So the Obama administration doesn't think we should let any Americans have certain firearms if a terrorist might use that particular weapon to kill us. But the Obama administration is also fine with a nuclear deal with Iran that--at best--simply puts Iran under the hostile nutball mullahs on a 15-year waiting period before getting nuclear missiles.

Pity Iran isn't on a terror watch list, or something.

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Enough Red Flags for a Sanders Rally

If there were any more red flags warning of the threat posed by Omar Mateen, it would have been a Bernie Sanders rally.

The Orlando killer didn't come out of nowhere:

A look at Mateen’s troubled life, based on interviews with officials and people who knew him, as well as documents, reveals that on at least a dozen occasions, beginning when he was in grade school, he gave clues in a public setting that he was capable of mayhem.

At age 14, he said he could shoot an AK-47 and mimicked an airplane flying into the World Trade Center. At 26, he bragged to courthouse co-workers of terrorist ties. Weeks ago, at 29, Mateen sought to buy heavy-duty body armor and bulk ammunition.

Many of his violent outbursts aped or celebrated Islamic terrorism and he repeatedly claimed connections to known terrorists, including the Boston Marathon bombers. He cheered the 9/11 attacks on the day they happened and once threatened to shoot partygoers at a barbecue when pork, which is forbidden to Muslims, touched his hamburger.

Good Lord, the man was just about voted by his senior classmates "most likely to wear a suicide bomb vest."

And note that the one party that reacted to the red flags was the store where Mateen tried to buy body armor and lots of ammo. Not the FBI which investigated him for 10 months. And not the security company Mateen worked for.

The gun store. Which is now ground zero for the Left's focus of blame on the NRA for the mass murder by a registered Democrat who pledged allegiance to ISIL.

But no, the Left says, Islamist fanboy Mateen was motivated by a climate built by Christian bakers who don't want to supply a cake to a gay wedding. Or motivated by people who want men to use men's bathrooms and women to use women's bathrooms, regardless of dress or sexual orientation.

We are at war with Islamist jihadis and too many here refuse to buy that reality. But we have to decide to fight this war with open eyes about the price we should pay to fight it and win it:

It should be remembered that, in the Civil War, Abraham Lincoln suspended the right to habeas corpus. During World War II, Roosevelt imposed intensive censorship and spied on Congress. But all knew that at some point these wars would end. Fighting the jihadist war will likely take a long time, and suspending liberties for long would change the character of the Republic. It might also generate hostility towards the government, a goal of the jihadists.

This is merely one of the challenges that must be debated. But it cannot be debated until we face some truths. This is a war and jihadists are the enemy. Not all Muslims are jihadists, but all jihadists are Muslims. There are other terrorist groups and other causes of death, but none have as extravagant plans for doing us harm as the jihadists.

Giving up liberties may be too high a price, but we should be honest in admitting the price we will pay. In addition, some tactics may seem plausible, but will not solve the problem in the end. Stopping Muslims from coming to the country, for example, may seem reasonable to some, but a child could get around that barrier. We must be honest that the war, which has raged for 15 years, will go on for a long time to come. We can bring our troops home. But jihadists may follow them. All of these things must be honestly considered. But we like to lie to ourselves, and that’s the real enemy.

Banning guns won't work. Crooks--being criminally minded--will always have guns. Or they'll use bombs or box cutters. Or something else. Their hateful Islamist ideology is the real weapon.

Banning Moslem immigrants won't work. People get in here all the time despite it being illegal. And if I may be so bold to suggest this, jihadis would probably be willing to lie about being Moslem to get past our screening at the border.

And Mateen was born here, so even if a ban on Moslem immigrants could work, it would not have stopped the Orlando slaughter.

Heck, having metal detectors, quick purse and waist-band searches, and more than a single armed guard at the entrance to a club won't stop attacks since the terrorists could simply decide to shoot patrons standing in line on the sidewalk outside waiting to get through the security bottleneck.

By all means, have rational discussions about immigration and firearms laws. These are valid questions apart from Orlando even if they are largely irrelevant to making changes that might have stopped that mass murder.

The ideology of Islamism is the threat. We are collateral damage in this Islamic civil war over whether Islamism should define what Islam is.

We need to beat the Islamists in their lairs and help the Moslem world delegitimize and marginalize the strain of jihadi-prone Islam that seeks to make that sick version the ideology of all Islam.

Do that and thugs won't be able to justify slaughtering people by pretending they are warriors for a higher cause rather than the sick bastards that they are.

I think the LGBT community would be grateful if the only problem they had with Islam was the refusal of a Moslem baker to make them a wedding cake.

Data Dump

I seem to have far more things of interest than I can possibly comment on with any hope at all of adding value, so let me offer a data dump of links.

How stupid are we in responding to the jihadi attack on Orlando?

By this point our jihadi enemies must be furious at our Left. A Moslem (and a registered Democrat) commits mass murder at a gay nightclub (which even mainstream Islam outlaws), proclaims his loyalty to ISIL--repeatedly, has his attack praised by ISIL Central, and yet still the Left insists that this has nothing to do with Islam and that Christian Republicans are really at fault. What, the jihadis must ask, do we have to do to get a little credit for having responsibility for our actions to bring the glorious caliphate one step closer?

The Army is adopting the reloadable Carl Gustav recoilless rifle rather than rely on the Carl-Gustav-derived single shot AT-4.

I learned to use the smaller single-use LAW. In basic training, the then-new AT-4 was demonstrated for us as something we would eventually learn to use in an Army career. And now it is being replaced.

The Obama administration is mostly taking drone strikes away from the CIA and putting the job in the military's hands--or at least the trigger finger part. (And try here for link if no direct access to WSJ)

That's fine. But do remember that the war on terror is not a body count exercise. Killing leaders (high value targets) should be a means to the end of defeating and discrediting jihad-prone Islamism.

And as I compile this data dump, the stupidity expands, which is related to the drone policy:

Attorney General Loretta Lynch said that love and compassion are the best responses to terrorism during remarks to the media in Orlando, Florida on Tuesday.

Shall we unleash the James Taylor in our own country now? I'd rather respond with more dead jihadis on the way to getting Moslems overseas to put those little equal signs on their cars' bumpers.

Let me continue.

A Clinton loyalist  twists reality so badly that it must have bruised his soul:

Notwithstanding the usual hype, a close reading of the 42-page report (plus timely recommendations and appendices) reveals that the State Department system was susceptible to cyberattacks both before and after Secretary Clinton’s tenure. Some experts have suggested that Clinton’s server was as secure, and maybe even more secure, than the department’s system.

Oh my Lord! Hillary Clinton's ploy was in fact done to defend our secrets by keeping them away from the State Department's vulnerable system? Seriously? Then why, pray tell, did Clinton defend her actions as not hiding her emails from FOIA by saying all of them were available because all of them would go to someone in the State Department? And why didn't she use her position as the Secretary of State to fix the problem rather than let the rest of the department use an insecure system?

How do people write and say this kind of obvious BS without damaging their very souls?

France is defending our position on the South China Sea's status as international waters:

French ministers present in Singapore also indicated that they plan to hold discussions with European Union partners in search of a guarantee that EU navies would more frequently navigate these waters in efforts to help retain the territorial integrity of the waterway and prevent further Chinese encroachment. While the Netherlands and the United Kingdom currently send ships to the area from time to time, France aims to coordinate a more unified presence and end long gaps between patrols by EU states engaged in the region.

France is a signatory to the law of the seas treaty. As I've long said to counter those who say we can only resist China (which doesn't abide by the treaty) from within the flawed treaty, why can't we enlist like-minded members of the treaty to help us resist China from within the treaty group?

The answer is, we can. And we did.

And ultimately, American military power, which our allies can support with their military power, is the ultimate guarantor of the territorial integrity of the international waterway.

In related news, Indonesia has resisted Chinese expansive claims of authority:

Indonesia and China clashed on Friday in their third naval confrontation this year when an Indonesian navy vessel fired at Chinese fishing boats and injured one person, according to China’s Foreign Ministry.

Alone, Indonesia might not dare resist China's power. With others in the game, the risk is worth taking.

Western intelligence agencies believe the Cyber Caliphate is actually Russian intelligence:

In other words, the Cyber Caliphate is a Russian false-flag operation. Although that loaded term has been hijacked by tinfoil-hat wearers and fringe websites, including lunatics who think horrific school shootings didn’t actually happen, it’s a perfectly legitimate espionage method of venerable vintage. Spy agencies routinely pose as third parties for operational purposes such as agent recruitment and covert action. The nastier intelligence services will even masquerade as terrorists to further their agenda.

I did wonder how the shallow end of the gene pool that jihadis seem to recruit from could produce a credible cyber organization. Some talented individuals, sure. But cyber-war on this scale? Well, apparently the jihadis didn't manage that after all. Our friends the "reset" Russians in action.

I hope this description of our idiocy in trying to fight al Qaeda and ISIL in Afghanistan without fighting the Taliban--on the stupid theory that jihadis who only want to kill and oppress our Afghan allies are okay while international jihadis who want to kill us aren't okay--predates recent news that we have begun Afghan War 2.0 by hitting the Taliban too in order to help our Afghan allies win.


And in Mali, where a rapid advance by a small but well-trained French force broke the back of jihadi control of northern Mali in January 2013, the situation is getting worse as the central government dominated by the more numerous southerners refuses to make deals with the north on autonomy to keep the jihadis down for good.

Unless we go to Ogre-sized combat vehicles, are we hitting the limit of tank guns at 130mm, which the Germans are developing?

So there you go. And it helps me keep my personal vow not to go overboard on blogging. Which is why I try to avoid more than 100 posts per month. 

Leaning Forward

The new AFRICOM commander awaiting confirmation would like the authority to strike ISIL in Libya. The ISIL and jihadi problem in Africa is in more than Libya. But I have a suggestion for a tool that LTG Waldhauser would find useful.

Yes, the war against jihadis is in Libya, too, so we really need Libya War 2.0 as well:

Marine Lieutenant General Thomas Waldhauser told his Senate confirmation hearing that the U.S. military was making preparations for possible military strikes in Libya against the militants.

But Waldhauser noted limitations on the current commander's ability to order strikes against the group in Libya, which require adhering to White House guidance. That differs from the rules of engagement in Iraq or Syria.

Asked by Republican Senator Lindsey Graham whether it would be wise for Obama to give the commander of the Africa Command the authority to go after Islamic State targets in Africa "on your own," Waldhauser said: "It would be wise."

Libya has NATO bases in Italy nearby as well as transiting warships that can contribute to such strikes.

But the continent is big and jihadis are in more places than just coastal Libya or places within range of our Djibouti-based forces and CENTCOM assets in the Arabian Sea.

So the general will need the means to project power around the continent if he hopes to be able to strike such jihadi militants wherever they are.

Of course, I will suggest modularized auxiliary cruisers for this power projection mission.

And it could be used for missions in Libya, for that matter.

UPDATE: The non-Libya portfolio could be more important by the time the general assumes command:

The campaign against the main ISIL base in Sirte, which began in late May, has succeeded in getting to Sirte and taking most of it from ISIL and apparently killing or dispersing most of the ISIL defenders.

And note the presence of 100 American and British special forces to enable the campaign.

As I've been writing for the last 6 months, the ISIL gunmen don't seem to be loving death much these days. Sure, digging them out where they are in terrorist mode is hard. And destroying the ideology that spawns them will take time and effort.

But they don't seem up to holding territory in the face of determined opposition. I've noticed this in Iraq, and now Libya seems to suffer this problem.

So chasing scattered jihadis around Africa after their defeat in Libya could make the AFRICOM Queen modularized auxiliary cruiser more important to have.

UPDATE: More from Strategypage on one aspect of the long-term problem--teaching kids to hate "the other" in religious schools.

When that hate is your only marketable skill, joining the jihad makes sense.

The Limits of Air Power

You know, our experience in Iraq War 2.0 has validated an answer to a question I answered two decades ago at the Association of the United States Army annual meeting in Washington when I presented the paper, "The First Gulf War and the Army's Future."

The First Gulf War being the Iran-Iraq War.

Iraq failed to push into Iran while they had the element of surprise and the advantage of numbers to seize anything of value that might have won the war for Iraq after the initial invasion.

During the Q and A period after, someone from the Air Force asked if it would have made a difference if the Iraqis had an air force comparable to our Air Force.

Having vowed to answer questions with my opinion and not give an all hands response (on the one hand ... but on the other hand ...) that essentially avoids responding.

So I simply said, "No, I don't think that would have made a difference." Period.

I've regretted that briefness and amended that answer on this blog at least once. (But I'll be darned if I can find one after 20 minutes of searching. Which is odd. Did I just think of doing that? Oh well.)

But as we've seen over the last year and a half a poor quality (but with good equipment) Iraqi military go up against fanatical enemies (ISIL instead of Iranian Pasdaran--Revolutionary Guards), we've actually gotten exactly that scenario.

Not only does Iraq have an air force as good as America's Air Force--Iraq has the actual United States Air Force.

And still the Iraqis have trouble advancing against enemies who can be fanatical but are small in number compared to their Iranian enemies in the 1980s and who are far less well equipped than their Iranian enemies from that war, who had a good American- and British-designed arsenal to use (initially, before going to Chinese-designed stuff).

So in retrospect, perhaps my original answer should stand as it was given.

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Short of Armed Insurrection, This is Britain's Last Chance for Brexit

Against all the odds, the British people have the chance to vote to leave the proto-imperial power based in Brussels that will never again make the mistake of asking the British people what they think of being ruled from the continent.

The British would be wise to get out of the European Union now while they can.

I admit I'm selfish on writing on this question repeatedly. I believe the EU is inherently hostile to the United States and that in the long run could be a threat. I'd kill the EU and if Britain sets the precedent of successful resistance, others may follow the example.

And I value the friendship and alliance of the British, which I believe would be submerged in the continent-wide Euro elites proto-empire.

But yes, I also believe Britain--as would all European states--would be better off outside the smothering embrace of the continent.

UPDATE: Beevor ably describes the background and flaws of the European Union. But then finishes with this non sequitor:

But the EU’s flaws do not justify its destruction. Alliances are fragile entities. They take time to create and are always vulnerable to vicious circles of suspicion and resentment. Whatever we might think of the EU – whether we love it or loathe it – one thing is certain. If Britain pulls out and thus provokes or accelerates its disintegration, we will instantly achieve most-hated nation status, not just in Europe but far beyond. It could well turn into the worst example in history of cutting off your nose to spite your face.

Eh?

Why does this destroy the EU? The EU existed before Britain joined. Those who remain can enjoy the EU without Britain, which could negotiate free trade with the EU. And with North America for that matter.

Nor is the EU an "alliance." NATO is an alliance--free states freely associated to carry out a common goal. The EU is a proto-empire that will entangle Britain (and other nations) in regulations and a strengthened EU military and police force that will be built at the expense of national military and police powers.

As for most-hated nation status, is he falling-down drunk? Britain won't even be the most hated nation in Europe given how the EU's popularity is taking hits everywhere over its failures and its obvious tendency to ignore popular will.

And the rest of the world honestly doesn't pay enough attention to European politics to make that kind of leap. Participation in the Iraq War hasn't dented Britain's reputation despite the Left's hatred of that action, yet leaving the European Union will do the trick? Really?

Face it, if Britain leaves the EU, Britain will only become the most unpopular state in Brussels.

And after the British example that you can successfully resist the Soviet Union Lite being built on the continent, more states will join the resistance and decide that exit is a good idea--which will catapult them to "most unpopular in Brussels" status.

This vote is Britain's best weapon to remain free. Shoot on sight, shoot first, shoot to kill, keep shooting.

Alien Tried to Kill Trump

I'm sure our media will get right on attacking the Democrats for their climate of hate around Donald Trump that led some foreigner whackjob to try to kill Trump:

A 19-year-old British man tried stealing a police officer's gun to kill GOP presidential contender Donald Trump during a weekend rally in Las Vegas, according to a federal complaint filed Monday.

Clearly, the young man was provoked by Trump's assault on the Queen's English, which Trump must immediately stop speaking.

I assume the man must be crazy because I've spent a couple weeks hearing how easy it is to buy a firearm. And instead of buying a fully automatic weapon with a grenade launcher (which isn't far from what some on the anti-2nd Amendment side claim is available here), the man tried to steal a weapon from a police officer.

Will Donald Trump propose a temporary halt in the entry of the British until we can investigate their motives better?

Will Hillary Clinton demand that we disarm police officers to prevent terrorists from stealing police weapons and using them to kill Americans?

UPDATE: And the man is in the country illegally after overstaying his visa.

Oh, and note that this isn't being covered 24/7 by the media. If someone is mildly mean to Hillary! we have to have a week-long national "conversation" on sexism.

By the way, the would-be assassin drove a car from California to do it. It's like you can get a car anywhere in this country without even a background check!

Exercises in Futility

My computer continues to be taken over by Windows 10 when Microsoft deems I don't really need to use my computer.

Then a couple days ago, I decided that maybe I had a virus. Botnets do that right? Maybe I'm unfairly blaming Microsoft.

Now, I do run full Windows Defender scans relatively frequently. And even when I don't it does say it is protecting my computer.

Still, I went to the Microsoft security site and ran their malware software. It took 4 or 5 hours, but it did discover some ransomware virus on my computer. Which it deleted.

How I got that I have no idea.

Apparently I'm not ransomworthy. I don't use online banking out of fear of just such a thing. I don't store passwords on my computer.

But just in case the malware grabs passwords as you type them in, I changed passwords on my important sites. Which was a pain.

Not that I've had any apparent problems on any accounts. But why take the chance?

Which makes it no less of a pain.

And today, my computer was again taken over by Microsoft making it virtually unusable as disk, memory, and CPU capacity are redlined up to 100%.

Just screw them. It was almost a relief when I discovered I had malware since if that was causing the problem, I got rid of the cause.

But no, Microsoft continues to treat the Dell computer I thought I bought as just something that is loaned to me when it is convenient for Microsoft.

And I don't know what they do with it while they take over, but it wasn't protecting my computer from a ransomware virus.

UPDATE: And Wednesday morning Microsoft has again taken over my computer, rendering it useless. They don't even make a ransom offer.

This update is via my phone, of course.

Cause and Effect

Are the Russians so stupid that they honestly don't see that NATO didn't start to move major units into new NATO states in the east until after Russia invaded Ukraine, upsetting the peace that Europe has enjoyed since 1989 when the Soviets lost their Warsaw Pact imperial holdings?

NATO has called out Russia over their invasion of Ukraine:

NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg on Wednesday demanded that Russia withdraw its forces and military hardware from Ukraine, and halt its support for pro-Moscow separatists battling Kiev.

"Russia needs to stop supporting the militants and withdraw its forces and military equipment from Ukrainian territory," Stoltenberg said after a meeting of NATO defence ministers with their Ukrainian counterpart in Brussels.

This statement may be an attempt to apply the clue bat to the heads of the Russians who simultaneously invade a European state and complain that NATO is inexplicably hostile to Russia.

Maybe--now let me speculate wildly here--just maybe, Russia's actions and rhetoric have caused NATO to finally spend the money to move troops into states on Russia's border who fear Russia is too unhinged to trust these days:

Britain, Germany and the United States advanced plans on Tuesday to spearhead a new NATO force on Russia's border from next year, and Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered snap checks on combat readiness across his armed forces.

Weeks before a critical NATO summit in Warsaw, three of NATO's biggest military powers said they would each command a battalion across the eastern flank to help deter any show of force such as that deployed by Moscow in Crimea in 2014. ...

Germany is likely to deploy to Lithuania, the United States to Poland and Britain to Estonia, on a six- to nine-month rotating basis. Other NATO nations will eventually take command responsibilities, diplomats told Reuters.

Canada is likely to lead a battalion to deploy in Latvia.

While Russia is likely to argue that effect has preceded cause by saying the NATO decision justifies Russia's aggression and rhetoric, anyone with a functioning brain stem should understand the obvious:

"You don't invade with a few battalions, okay?" the U.S. envoy to NATO, Douglas Lute, told reporters. "But you can deter, and you can affect a potential aggressor's calculus in terms of cost, benefit and risks."

The Russians claim not to understand the obvious. I hope they are just posturing and don't really believe NATO is a threat. But with their abundant paranoia that flows with the volume you normally only get with hydraulic fracturing, I fear the worst.

America will also add a heavy brigade to Europe, although it technically won't be a permanent addition to the parachute and Stryker brigades (one each) we keep in Europe.

And NATO hopes the new rapid response force of 40,000 (the NATO Response Force ) capable of reinforcing the eastern front will add to deterrence.

When the neighborhood gets rough, potential victims of aggression like to have Americans around them.

Ponder that Russia continues to hype a non-existent NATO threat while China's ability to do what they want on the Russian-Chinese border--which Russia moved south in Russia's favor in the 19th century--grows every year.

Monday, June 20, 2016

Hold Your Praise for the State Fifty

Don't get too worked up over the dissent channel at the Department of State which led to a call for American air strikes on Assad. They have made only a small journey on the road to reality. Indeed, I'm almost cynical enough to believe this whole thing is a charade managed by the Obama administration itself.

We didn't need more than 50 State Department staff to tell us the policy on Syria hasn't made the war any better. Early on--about 400,000 dead and ISIL ago--the administration famously said it didn't want to arm the still non-jihadi rebels because we didn't want to "further militarize" the conflict.

Obviously the unrest militarized into a full-blown civil war without us, and now we try to support non-jihadi rebels who fight Assad in the northwest and southwest and back anti-ISIL forces in the northeast.

Since then, we've tried to push Assad to negotiate his own departure. I assume at this point the administration would accept a faux deal that has Assad formally step down without requiring his clan and backers to lose actual power.

Such a deal would leave Russia with bases in the eastern Mediterranean and a reputation for backing allies in tough spots; would leave Iran with a client in Damascus providing overland access to their ally Hezbollah in Lebanon; and would end Hezbollah's bleeding out (over a thousand dead) in Syria while leaving them with Iran and Syria owing them big favors.

Europe could pretend to get an end to the Moslem "refugee" crisis that has sown chaos and dissent in Europe. I say "pretend" because while they like to call this a refugee crisis, since the vast majority of people arriving in Europe aren't Syrians fleeing war, the end of the war won't stop the flow of economic migrants.

We, of course, will get a lovely signing ceremony at some Austrian castle, or something.

Yet with Russian support, Assad is hanging on in the west without making any concessions real or pretend. In the east, ISIL is losing ground but the Kurds who provide the bulk of the anti-ISIL forces will never march west out of their ethnic homeland to take on Assad.

So the defeat of ISIL will strengthen Assad's hand so he will be able to turn on the remaining rebels in the northwest and southwest.

So while it is nice that the dissent channel records recognition that our policy is not getting rid of Assad, the dissent is just as delusional as the Obama administration:

The “dissent channel cable”, written by more than 50 officials at the US state department, calls for air strikes against the Syrian government to force it to negotiate a settlement to the conflict.

Note that the dissenters want America to strike Assad for the purpose of forcing it to negotiate a settlement of the conflict.

Assad's military has suffered 120,000 dead, I believe, with about 160,000 dead civilians; untold civilian and economic damage; and the loss of most of Syria's territory.

And still Assad fights on.

Yet the dissenters believe that American air strikes on Assad--which since fall 2015 when the Russians intervened on the ground risks direct American-Russian combat [UPDATE: Like this nonlethal aerial confrontation.]--would inflict enough additional pain on Assad to force Assad to negotiate an end to the conflict.

No word on whether the Fifty want "unbelievably small" strikes.

If I was enough of a cynic, I'd suggest that the dissent channel was used by the administration to float a means of pretending to force us to do something slightly different in order to get Assad to agree to something we've long wanted--a pretend peace deal that keeps Assad in power but "responsibly ends the war" with a decent enough interval before our defeat becomes obvious.

I don't really think this is an administration plant. The simpler explanation is that the dissenters want negotiations--as diplomats are prone to want from training, experience, and pay check--and truly believe that the small amount of additional pain or the symbolism from American strikes would provide the pressure.

But that won't work. Certainly not now with the Russians openly backing Assad. Who would believe that the Obama administration would escalate enough over Russian opposition to inflict enough pain on Assad to get him to buckle?

And remember, as the dissent cable makes clear, Assad would know that the air strikes are for the purpose of pushing negotiations and not for the purpose of defeating him. Assad would know right off the bat that he can survive the strikes because the plan requires him to survive in order to negotiate!

Regardless of the motives that would get Assad to the table, obviously Assad would pretend to go along with an American "peace" plan whatever the level of pain. As would the Iranians and Russians who would get their objectives secured while possibly getting a joint Nobel Peace Prize with that clown Kerry or whoever in the administration is honored for negotiating a victory for our enemies.

So don't cheer on the State Fifty. They're on the same road as President Obama and are merely arguing over what radio channel should be on during the journey.

UPDATE: Another author who doesn't think much of the dissent despite being unimpressed with the administration's strategy.

And Now We Define "Dramatically"

Remember this Obama administration defense of ending sanction on Iran?

The officials also claimed that most of the sanctions, including multilateral sanctions, could be snapped back into place if Iran cheated, and they argued that giving Iran tens of billions of dollars in cash won’t dramatically increase Iran’s spending on terrorism and other nefarious activities. [emphasis added]

Now we have a figure to help define the "dramatic" threshold as money has flowed to Iran post-sanctions:

The government budget did increase 35 percent this year but not a lot of the additional $25 billion went to fostering economic growth. The defense budget nearly doubled, to $19 billion.

So nearly a 100% increase in formal defense spending.

Call me paranoid, but I bet the money that Iran spends on supporting terrorism and Shia insurrection in the region isn't a published figure, yet went up a lot too.

The president's goodness lessons just aren't taking in Tehran.

UPDATE: Here's some more drama:

The Obama administration has concluded that uranium particles discovered last year at a secretive Iranian military base likely were tied to the country’s past, covert nuclear weapons program, current and former officials said, a finding that contradicts Tehran’s longstanding denials that it was pursuing a bomb.

Traces of man-made uranium were found at the Parchin facility, southeast of Tehran, by investigators from the International Atomic Energy Agency, the United Nations’ nuclear watchdog, as part of an investigation tied to the landmark nuclear deal reached last July between Iran and global powers.

The Iranians have claimed that the site was used for developing and testing conventional weapons. The particles were the first physical evidence—on top of satellite imagery and documents from defectors—to support the charge that Iran had been pursuing a bomb there.

We can't rely on the IAEA to prevent Iran from going nuclear and the IAEA can't even go to Parchin or any other "military" site declared off limits.

And if Iran really did halt work on nuclear warheads in 2003, why isn't the logical reason that Iran no longer needs to do work on nuclear warheads? Perhaps Iran got a design from Pakistan when they were in the nuclear export business? Perhaps Iran is letting North Korea perfect the engineering, eh, given the close work between those two pariah (and Axis of Evil) states?

Have a super sparkly day.

We are Not Amused

So our president should have extraordinary powers to deny an American a basic right?

I'm so old I remember when letting the government potentially see what your library habits are would mean "the terrorists win." Now?

Vox writer Dylan Matthews said on Twitter Thursday that he believed the president should be able to unilaterally ban all Americans from purchasing guns.

One, I wouldn't trust a Vox writer to explain how to pour water out of a boot if he or she was reading instructions on the heel.

Two, so it is wrong to deny a person the right to vote after completing a sentence for a felony (and actually, I agree with that basic position); but it is okay to deny a right based on the unilateral decision of the president?

Three, I'm fairly positive that  Matthews wants President Obama to have that power. Or President Clinton. But President Trump? Not so much is my guess.

And four--have you seen this guy Matthews?



Oh sweet Jesus. If anybody should be banned from purchasing guns on mere executive whim, he is the one.

Not to be overly cruel to a man suggesting such a radical abandonment of rule of law to an imperial presidency, but his picture just screams "You'll see. You'll all see!! I'll show you all that I'm somebody! You mean people who teased me in gym class and stuffed me in a locker will pay!!!!"

Seriously, he has that off-kilter serial killer look. Doesn't he?

Now I'm sure--although I know nothing about the man other than he writes for Vox and has a horrible view on government powers over individuals--that Matthews is a fine young man who has never tortured small mammals and doesn't even have a parking ticket to his name.

But if he wants a little more credibility, he really should comb his hair, shave, and ditch the thousand-yard stare.

Sadly, this type of thinking isn't limited to the Twitterati, as a member of Congress declares that "due process" that prevents the government from doing what it wants stands in the way of protecting Americans.

Perhaps members of Congress should be banned--for life--from purchasing firearms. If it saves even one life, right?

Tips to Instapundit.