October 03, 2016

Gir Brings Us News Befitting a Monday



Foreign Policy has more on the simmering water conflict between India and Pakistan. Pakistan is threatening to use nuclear weapons on India in response to an Indian raid that killed numerous Jihadists which the Pakistani's claim to have nothing to do with. India is still pondering a redirection of the Indus river and now China  is threatening India over an Indian state that China claims under the principle that if Chinese pottery has been found by archeologists...that region is part of China. this has been going on for a while, Foreign Policy points out that China is looking at cutting off the Brahmaputra ...which would be rather more challenging than closing the flow gates on the Indus but would screw India good.



More history than news now and not representing any direct threat, this story is,, nevertheless, sufficiently horrifying to be included in a Monday news dump.
 Former secretary of state Hillary Clinton turned away a high-ranking Chinese defector who sought political asylum after the communist police chief sought refuge in a U.S. consulate in southwestern China four years ago. 
That is sickening. What could possibly be worse than....OH MY GOD! Fortunately we have another option hopefully with the perspective and maturity to...Oh for frack's sake

I started to type something very terrifying in this space, but upon tracking down the source for the story, all references to it led back to Zero Hedge. Whew!

The USGS is taking the unusual step of issuing an advisory, that the chances of a major earthquake in Souther California is much greater over the next few days.  Note that the San Andreas isn't the only potentially aggravating geological feature within 10 miles of these quakes. 

Oh yes. This.



Realizing that their exploding phones are unlikely to get iPhone or Blackberry users, Samsung is making an effort to get the rest of us with exploding washing machines. I guess Whirlpool was the correct choice!



Posted by: The Brickmuppet at 10:14 AM | Comments (1) | Add Comment
Post contains 358 words, total size 4 kb.

September 27, 2016

Keeping Informed



Meanwhile...

India and Pakistan are having a tiff.

At least 18 soldiers were killed in a terror attack on an Army camp in Uri in Jammu and Kashmir on September 18. All four terrorists, who attacked the camp, were killed.

This did not occur in a vacuum.. 

Pakistan's defense minister, last week decided this an oppertune moment to clarify Pakistan's stance.

Amidst growing tension over Uri attack by Pakistani terrorists on Sunday, a video of the country’s Defence Minister Khawaja M Asif threatening to use nuclear weapon against India is doing the rounds on social media. The video shows the Pakistani defence minister telling Geo News: "If Pakistan’s security is threatened, we will not hesitate in using tactical (nuclear) weapons.”  

And patience is running thin in India which has decided that they need to take action.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi after a fiery speech in Kerala where he blamed Pakistan for exporting global terrorism has now called for a briefing on the Indus Waters Treaty. 

Huh?

One of the suggestions is to turn off the Indus river tap that waters much of Pakistan

Oh Dear. 

India and Pakistan have a bit over 100 nukes each. 


 







Posted by: The Brickmuppet at 08:26 PM | Comments (4) | Add Comment
Post contains 311 words, total size 5 kb.

September 21, 2016

Meanwhile: The Ceasefire in Syria Continues Apace

The U.S. may or may not have hit a Syrian army unit. The Russian's, who hit a U.S. airbase back in July have probably  hit an aid convoy. The Russian carrier is en route to the area, the Chinese have gotten involved. We have troops on the ground, in Syria, a country whose government we have said we are going to overthrow, which is an ally of Russia who also has troops on the ground protecting Syria by shooting at the Jihadists we are ostensibly backing while we fight the mostly different crazy-nuts jihadis in ISIS which Russia is also fighting without any coordination with us so Russian and U.S. troops are on opposite sides of a civil war, armed and shooting at people who are trying to kill them in an area in which at least two factions are using poison gas. 


WHAT COULD POSSIBLY GO WRONG!?




















(As an aside, the King of Spain technically carries a subsidiary title of Archduke, so we should probably guard him quite closely...just as a precaution.)


Posted by: The Brickmuppet at 06:13 PM | Comments (3) | Add Comment
Post contains 180 words, total size 3 kb.

September 11, 2016

Remember The Rememberance

On September 11, 1683 the Ottoman forces besieging the city of Vienna were on the verge of victory. The City, under siege since July 14, was starving, Ottoman engineers had greatly weakened the city's walls and its collapse appeared imminent. However that evening relief arrived in the form of an army from Hungary and one from the confederation somewhat misleadingly known as the Holy Roman Empire...They brought with them roughly 40,000 troops, not good odds against a force of 90,000 Caliphate troops that included a large number of Janissaries. However, the situation was dire and this was a final desperate attempt to turn the tide of this months long battle, for with the loss of Vienna the Islamic armies would have free reign throughout Europe. The enlightenment was about to be snuffed out. 


Early on the morning of the 12th the allied armies were reinforced by 27,000 fresh Polish troops under John Sobieski, who bolstered the European forces as they pressed their attack against the Ottomans. Even with the reinforcements, Europe and had only a bit more than 2/3 of the Ottoman forces, however the Ottomans were also having to deal with the guard of the city they were besieging, which astutely chose this time to get very frisky. 

By the end of the 12th, the Islamic forces were routed. Along with the Battle of Lepanto, the siege of Vienna is generally regarded as the end of the large scale Islamic expansion into Europe. September 11th, 1683 thus marks the end of the period when the threat of Jihadi conquest was a constant threat...over the previous thousand years, Western civilization had been pushed into a small peninsula on the ass end of Asia which, for reasons of self esteem is still referred to as a "continent". This erosion was sometimes slowed, occasionally reversed for a time, but it was inexorable until 333 years ago today. 

 Islamists do not take these reversals lightly, particularly since this geographically tiny exception to their civilizations expansion turned out to be (for a time at least) annoyingly consequential to their efforts to fufill their faith's demand that they kill or convert...everyone. This date marked a profound slowing (for a time at least) of a thousand years of expansion and the halt, (for a time at least) of their expansion west. It is the date that, to their mind their civilization lost its way. 



They, quite unlike our cultural trendsetters, have a keen sense of history, and so 15 years ago, this was the date was chosen to kill Westerners,. in remembrance of the day that, to these murderous fiends, the course of history went off the rails. 


15 years on, nearly all of those who put together this celebration of butchery are dead, but their inspiration has worked better than one might have expected. The enemy of the west, and reason itself is again on the march. What it lacks in wealth, it makes up for in verve and they have lost none of the habits that Europe fought so hard and desperately against for a thousand years. 

Stories of great evils; dark, malign forces, which threaten civilization itself and that, even if defeated, bide their time, perhaps for centuries awaiting a chance to crawl forth again thirsty for vengeance...these were once parables told by adults to their children to instill in them on a profound level that monsters are real and even when out of sight may still bide their time. Today, we are ruled by children who use such tales to reassure themselves that such things cannot possibly happen...even as the ancient enemy is inside the gates.  

The greatest advantage that these people have is that they have long memories, and we tend to forget all that we have learned through the blood and terror of our ancestors. 

So do not listen to those who would have you "move on". Remember it, for the atrocity that was inflicted on 3,000 of our own 15 years ago, was itself a memorial service performed by those who thirst for our blood, and who themselves never forget. 


Posted by: The Brickmuppet at 01:46 PM | No Comments | Add Comment
Post contains 684 words, total size 6 kb.

August 28, 2016

It Doesn't Repeat; It Rhymes

Regarding China:


It’s not clear, however, that even well informed Americans realize how dire the situation is. It’s time they paid better attention, because China’s lawless pursuit of resources and territory is coming to resemble nothing else so much as the behavior of the Japanese empire before World War Two—a disconcerting comparison I have heard more than once from analysts and government officials here...


Regarding Russia:

"Russia is getting ready for a big war which they assume will go nuclear, with them launching the first attacks,”

See also this...


 Regarding North Korea:

North Korea on Wednesday test-fired a submarine-launched missile 500 kilometres (around 300 miles) towards Japan, marking what weapons analysts called a clear step forward for its nuclear strike ambitions.

The flight distance, which was tracked by South Korea's military Joint Chiefs of Staff, far exceeded any previous SLBM tests, suggesting significant progress in technical prowess....

... 
If fired at the optimum angle, it could cover more than 1,000km, the source said.

Do note the neighborhood it it would have landed in if it had fired at optimum angle.
Image via

Regarding ISIS/ISIL/DAESH

The Iraqi Security Forces (ISF) and allied tribal fighters recaptured the Waleed Border Crossing on the Syrian-Iraqi Border on August 3. ISIS mounted a counterattack on August 8 - 9 against the Waleed Border Crossing as well as the Tanf Border Crossing in Syria, which is held by the U.S.-backed New Syrian Army. Both attacks were repelled. ISW is thus changing the status of Waleed Border Crossing to ISF Control.

Iraqi Peshmerga affiliated with the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) launched clearing operations southeast of Mosul on August 14 - 15, seizing at least twelve villages in the Ninewa Plains. The operation originated from positions near the Khazir Military Base between Mosul and Arbil, and progressed south towards the town of Gwer. ISW is thus changing the status of this area from contested to KDP Peshmerga Control.

The ISF recaptured the city of Qayyarah on August 25 following more than a month of operations to secure terrain on the southern and western outskirts of the city after security forces seized the Qayyarah Airbase on July 9. The ISF breached the city limits of Qayyarah on August 23, encountering limited resistance in the southern neighborhoods. The ISF secured the city center and government complex on August 24 and Joint Operations Command announced full control over the city on August 25. ISW is thus changing the status of Qayyarah to ISF Control.

Note that....Wait! That's GOOD news!

Maybe things are finally looking u....




Posted by: The Brickmuppet at 08:53 PM | Comments (8) | Add Comment
Post contains 438 words, total size 5 kb.

July 26, 2016

Arguably Less Disturbing Than The Previous Post

It looks like the Russians are commissioning not one, but two classes of big submarines to carry their new heavyweight torpedoes, which we've blogged about before. These torpedoes, which are variously referred to as KANYON or Status-6, are believed to have a warhead with a yield somewhere between 50 and 150 megatons. This sounds like a plot point from a summer blockbuster or comic book, but as a practical matter, these would be fiendishly hard to stop and they would utterly destroy (and render uninhabitable for years) the ports upon which we rely for our Navy and trade.


One of these submarines, a brand new ship believed to be named KHABAROVSK appears to be a dedicated carrier for six or so of these port busters and basically would serve much the same function as a ballistic missile sub, doing deterrence patrols. The other one is something of an oddball....


Click here for SUPAH-SIZE

BELGOROD is a Russian cruise missile submarine being refitted as a sort of research vessel/spy sub/ underwater support ship. Yet this vessel is also reported to have six of these weapons fitted. While this contradictory set of requirements is perplexing, Covert -Shores is a fairly well regarded site and was way ahead of the curve on their analysis of the North Korean Ballistic Missile sub. Why an underwater reconnaissance vessel/work boat is carrying strategic weapons is unknown, but the vessel seems to be designed to support nuclear powered underwater sensor arrays in the arctic and conduct reconnaissance. This may simply be a second large hull that can get the weapons out to sea so they can start "deterring". After all,  a navy needs at least three ships to keep one on patrol at all times. Alternatively, the extensive spy sub equipment might have applications for sneaking these weapons into U.S. ports.

Obviously our European allies would be vulnerable to this weapon too but I can't see the Russians setting off something that dirty in Europe. Japan might be a target as the jet stream and currents would carry the contamination East, but Japan is not a threat to Russia, so this is probably only aimed at the U.S.

Of course, there is actually a bigger story here than just operationalizing some doomsday torpedoes, and that is the ongoing construction of a series of nuclear powered sensor arrays in the Arctic. This is after all purported to be the primary function of this new submarine. Such a sensor array is reminiscent of the old SOSUS but it has the potential to be far more capable thanks to the raw power available from the underwater nuclear reactors associated with it. When completed, this sensor net has the potential to very much turn the Arctic into a Russian lake in which US or Canadian subs will exist only at Russian indulgence.

In a related story (related in that it involves Russians, submarines and breathless, apocalyptic clickbaitery) here is an AEI article that has been making the rounds in the consevosphere. It attaches some considerable significance to the names of Russian Strategic submarines. Note though, that the author's premise does not hold up with regard to the name KHABAROVSK .


Posted by: The Brickmuppet at 01:13 PM | Comments (1) | Add Comment
Post contains 536 words, total size 5 kb.

July 24, 2016

I HAVE A CRAZY THEORY

This is my crazy theory.

There are many crazy theories, but this one is mine!

The Democrats are about to nominate a singularly repulsive candidate for president. Hillary Clinton is a fractally-corrupt-Mandelbrot -Set of malfeasance, who has seriously endangered the country and even if one ignores the venal corruption the sheer incompetence of her tenure as America's Chief foreign policy officer caused untold suffering in North Africa, the Middle East and now Europe by destabilizing the area and creating a refugee crisis and this doesn't even get into the  general weakening of the international order that happened on her watch.  She's also a petty, abusive and singularly unlikeable politician, which begs the question....wHY did the democrats go all in for her.

Well, my theory is that their reasoning was along the lines of "BWAHAHAHAHA!!!! Those republicans will NEVER be able to lose to us now!" (dancity dancity dancity dance).

Which dovetails into the rest of my theory...that the Republicans did not take this lying down.  The establishment kept multiple of their favored sons in the race to split the vote, ensuring that Trump would get the nod. Remember above, when I said that Hillary was SINGULARLY repulsive? 
Well....perhaps dually is a better word....if it's a word.



One possible explanation for this is that the Republican Party hacks are sitting in a Potpourri filled room congratulating themselves and saying things like "Those Democrat bastards, don't stand a chance. They'll never loose to this asshole!"...and yet they might.

Why the inversion this year?

Well that is the crux of my crazy theory.

Neither side actually WANTS to win, because neither side wants to be in the White House during the next four years. They do not want to be the ones tasked with the Sisyphean and possibly impossible task of dealing with the fire breathing hydra with rabies that is the deteriorating world situation. Their best case scenario is to loose, and in the unlikely event there are any survivors, come out of their bunkers and pick up the pieces, while blaming the other party for the catastrophe that they fortuitously dodged having to deal with.


I base my crazy theory in part upon the following:


At the office I ask a Russian employee about the mood in his working-class Moscow neighborhood. The old people are buying salt, matches and "gretchka,” (buckwheat) he tells me - the time-worn refuge for Russians stocking up on essentials in case of war.

In the past two months, I’ve traveled to the Baltic region, to Georgia, and to Russia. Talk of war is everywhere.
 

There does seem to be a consensus that the Baltics are a very likely place for things to go pear shaped.
  ...the possibility of nuclear war between America and Russia not only still exists, but is probably growing.  And the place where it is most likely to begin is in a future military confrontation over three small Baltic states -- Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania.  
 
But fear not! There's always Moldova.


Tensions, between India and China are re-escalating both are nuclear powers, and of course, Pakistan, also nuclear capable, building lots of tactical nukes, and rather crazy to boot can be counted on to pounce upon India in any existential crisis. 

China is, elsewhere acting an awful lot like Japan did in the 1930s.

And all those "little" nukes in Pakistan...well the Venn diagram between those and Al-Quaeda or ISIS has considerable overlap

While all that is going on we find out that the Russian's aparrantly bombed a U.S airbase...last month

Do note that Brickmuppet Blog is not alone in worrying about the nukes in Turkey given that the country's coup may have been a false flag operation and in any event is likely to bring about an Islamic dictatorship in a NATO member

The economy is not looking particularly good either.

We'll refrain from discussing domestic racial, social and infrastructure issues, as we are already in teal deer territory. 

But, there is this....scarcely worth mentioning.
 The US national security industry is planning for the impact of an unprecedented global food crisis lasting as long as a decade, according to reports by a government contractor.

The studies published by CNA Corporation in December 2015, unreported until now, describe a detailed simulation of a protracted global food crisis from 2020 to 2030 

Take heart though.

Remember, this is a CRAZY theory.

The crazy part is the assumption of sufficient competence and foresight in our leaders that they would anticipate a coming crisis. So don't go all to pieces over my crazy theory.

Like the girl says...





Posted by: The Brickmuppet at 05:59 PM | Comments (3) | Add Comment
Post contains 904 words, total size 11 kb.

July 16, 2016

The B-61 Nuclear Bomb




Designed in the early 1960s and by far the oldest nuclear weapon in the U.S. arsenal, the B-61 is the designation for a family of  bombs that weigh around 700 pounds,  are 13.5 inches wide (not including the fins) and  just a bit under 12 feet long. It is a variable yield weapon which can have the amount of 'splody it provides adjusted from 1/3 of a kiloton to between 80 and 340 kilotons depending on the exact model, though as part of an upgrade being undertaken now the maximum yield is to be reduced to 50 kilotons in the near future. It can also be used as a depth charge. 

The weapon is on loan to certain NATO countries, Italy(around 90), Germany (20), Belgium(10-20) and...er...Turkey, which has about 90.

In what is most certainly unrelated news.....the latest news from the coup in Turkey is that the Bosphorus is closed and there is some sort of naval action going on. F-16s seem to be launching raids on the Presidential Palace and there appears to be a near 50/50 split in public opinion between those who are cheering or opposing the ouster of the increasingly Islamist Turkish president and the Military coup, which, depending on who is talking is either securing the country, or getting routed. 


Posted by: The Brickmuppet at 12:18 AM | Comments (1) | Add Comment
Post contains 219 words, total size 2 kb.

April 02, 2016

Suddenly, in Russia....



The Russians now appear set to perhaps double the number of nuclear warheads that they have deployed. This seems unpossible  U.S and R.F warhead totals are limited to 1550 each by a treaty which has all the binding power of....


It gets worse. While the State Department disputes this, the article is reporting that...
Officials said that in addition to adding warheads to the new missiles, Russian officials have sought to prevent U.S. weapons inspectors from checking warheads as part of the 2010 treaty. 

Russia also enjoys a strong civil defense system and some years ago constructed 5000 blast/fallout shelters around Moscow alone. They've recently begun an inventory and inspection of them, you know, just because.  
Puchkov said on August 14 that his ministry has its "fixed attention" on making sure Russia's bomb shelters are "ready to use for their intended purposes."


Russia is also increasing its ties to China which, likewise, is greatly increasing its warhead numbers, and MIRVing its  missiles

While all that's going on, the U.S. is going in rather the opposite direction.




Posted by: The Brickmuppet at 12:58 PM | No Comments | Add Comment
Post contains 179 words, total size 3 kb.

March 26, 2016

Hey! They Got The Scale Right!

The Dumpy Despot of the DPRK has released a new propaganda video, which exhibits his typical subtle and nuanced approach to foreign relations.



Interestingly, the size of the blast and mushroom cloud are not wild exaggerations, but rather, given its size in comparison to the Lincoln Memorial, it's about what one would expect from a 10 to 15 kiloton blast. Given the quality of the video's FX, especially that business around the 24 second mark, this level of verisimilitude is...surprising. 

Sadly,  they missed an opportunity, given that if they'd set the detonation for this weekend, they'd have been able to show apocalyptic cherry blossoms flying everywhere.  Of course they probably don't appreciate that.


Posted by: The Brickmuppet at 11:56 PM | No Comments | Add Comment
Post contains 119 words, total size 1 kb.

<< Page 1 of 11 >>
84kb generated in CPU 0.06, elapsed 0.0579 seconds.
69 queries taking 0.0234 seconds, 220 records returned.
Powered by Minx 1.1.6c-pink.