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So we now finally have some limited clarity on the outcome of this year’s first Syria crisis.

Cruise Missile Strike

US frigates, B-1 bombers, and French/UK fighters launched around 100 cruise missiles at Syria, incidentally taking care to launch from far away and stay outside the radius of Russia’s A2AD bubbles.

syria-strike-2018

Ben Nimmo.

There are also disputes over the extent to which Russia participated in this turkey shoot, and its success:

  1. Syrian air defense did all of the work (helped at most by Russian telemetric assistance)
  2. Russian air defense participated – either fully, or in part (e.g. helped in Homs, but not over Damascus)

… as well as by its actual success rate:

  1. American version: 0%
  2. Russian version: 71/103 = 69% (details: airports – 4/4 in Duvali; 12/12 in Dumeir; 18/18 in Bley; 12/12 in Shayrat; 5/9 in Mezze; 13/16 in Homs; locations in Barca and Gerramani – 7/30).

map-syria-strike-2018

How does this performance stack up?

  • 1/2 would be very good (considering especially that Syrians don’t have a reputation for military competence)
  • 1/1 or 2/2 would be meh/as expected
  • 2/1 would be catastrophic

My impression is that the Russian version is closer to reality. At the very least, at least some missiles plainly were intercepted – there is video of this, as well as photographs of craters that plainly just hit the ground – so the maximal Western claim of zero success is false.

As Paul Robinson notes, even the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights – who are no friends of Assad or Russia – says that 65 were knocked down.

Repercussions

1. Does this mean “alarmist” analysts who predicted WW3 were wrong?

Well, it’s a good thing I never did so: “Most likely, it will be a much larger-scale repetition of the mostly symbolic strike on Shayrat AFB in April 2017.

However, I believe the main problem I outlined stands: Namely, that Trump has locked himself into an escalatory cycle. The jihadis now know that all they need to do to provoke geometrically expanding retaliations against Assad is to continue setting up false flag gas attacks. Talk of perverse incentives. As this cycle plays out, the chances of Russian forces entering into hostilities with US and coalition forces will continue to increase. Maybe next time, Bolton/Trump will win out over voices of caution such as Mattis. Or maybe Israelis or Saudis launch an attack on Russian forces under the cover of the next coalition strike against Syria.

Since the chances of Russia winning an aeronaval battle over Syria will remain zero regardless of what it does, it will still have the same unappetizing set of choices outlines in the Road to WW3.

In the context of this escalation trap and the legal nihilism that has permeated American, British, and French foreign policy, we are going to be living under the risk of such a development until Syria clears out the last of the jihadis.

2. Still no Wall, the steady purge of the Old Trumpists (Stephen Miller is the only one who’s left), tax cuts for corporations, now talk of signing on back to the TPP…

And now the revelation that Trump was on the warhawk side of the debate, along with Bolton, puts the last nails into the coffin of Trump the Candidate.

There’s no longer any of the energy that propelled him into the Presidency through pure memetic energy. /pol/ no longer cares for him. The_Donald has become an echo chamber for his personality cult. Alt Right, Alt Light – doesn’t matter, almost everyone has jumped ship (Ann Coulter months ago, now Cernovich). The only people “on the Internet” who remain fans are either outright Zionists like Jacob Wohl, and adherents of 4D chess explanations that are drifting into absurd levels of intricacy.

Audacious Epigone has more evidence that the mid-terms will be a rout for the Republicans, with many of the people who took a chance on Trump in 2016 now reverting to the Democrats.

3. Pentagon propaganda about Russian bots is nearing self-parody:

“The Russian disinformation campaign has already begun. There has been a 2,000% increase in Russian trolls in the last 24 hours.”

As Mark Sleboda joked, “there has been a 2,000,000,000% increase in Pentagon mouthpieces and MSM propagandists dismissing any and all dissenting & critical American citizens who disagree w their illegal wars, pretexts & narrative as “Russian trolls.”

4. China has been uncharacteristically blunt in its support of Syria and Russia:

“China has always spoken against the use of military force in international relations and spoken for the respect of the sovereignty of all the states, their independence and territorial integrity,” the spokeswoman said.

“Any unilateral military actions in circumvention of the UN Security Council contradict the basic goals and principles of the UN Charter,” says the Chinese Foreign Ministry’s statement posted on its website.

“China is calling on all the parties concerned to return to the framework of international law and resolve the problem through dialogue and consultations,” the statement reads.

“China believes that political settlement is the sole way out of the Syrian crisis, Hua Chunying said.

Lead Global Times editorial today: Reckless strike on Syria a shameless act

Even the usually bland and professionally restrained Xinhua has engaged in a fun exercise of “Trump criticizing Trump”:

China also supported Russia’s resolution in the USNC condemning the FUKUS aggression against Syria, along with Bolivia itself. Peru, Ethiopia, Equatorial Guinea, and Kazakhstan – the latter purportedly Russia’s ally, but in reality nothing of the sort – abstained. The US, UK, France, Cote D’Ivoire, Kuwait, the Netherlands, Poland, and Sweden voted against.

So getting China to crawl out of its cocoon and to make its displeasure known has been another excellent development.

Russian Sanctions

Not directly related, but we beginning to see the general outlines of Russia’s response to the recent US sanctions.

The current bill proposes to:

  • Ban import of US alcohol and tobacco products
  • “Ceasing or suspending international cooperation in the nuclear sphere, rocket engine building and aircraft building between Russian companies and organizations under US jurisdiction”
  • Ceasing to recognize US copyrights. (“”This will be like a punch to the solar plexus for the Americans, because all achievements and all domination of the Anglo-Saxon, Western world are based on intellectual property and we are targeting this very right,” MP Mikhail Yemelyanov (Fair Russia) said in comments to Interfax.”)

While the first two are not unexpected, the third one seems radical and far-reaching.

In the earliest versions I read about, there was also talk of banning US citizens from working in Russia. This would be a very stupid move that would have a very direct and negative impact on several of my regular commenters. Hopefully this has gotten removed.

 
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  1. /pol/ no longer cares for him.

    I have my doubts though whether internet phenomena like /pol/ or the alt-right in general were ever really important for Trump’s victory.
    I get the impression that a non-trivial part of Trump voters are people who have zero problem with an interventionist foreign policy. They may want to keep Mexicans out, but apart from that aren’t really distinguishable from the kind of people who were fans of Bush II (e.g. fanatically pro-Israel with US and Israeli interests being seen as identical, permanent US global hegemony seen as a natural state of affairs, strong hostility to Russia, Iran, China). You see such people even on an “alternative” site like Unz review (in Sailer’s Syria thread one particularly moronic commenter applauded Lindsey Graham for suggesting Assad should be “taken out”). So I wonder how much Trump has really been hurt by his Syria policy.
    In any case, the fact that Trump actually seems to have favored a more extreme course of action and was only reined in by his military advisers like Mattis is pretty disturbing.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Polish Perspective

    I wonder how much Trump has really been hurt by his Syria policy.
     
    One common cliché about electoral politics is that the average voter cares (or knows) almost nothing about foreign policy. This is especially true in a large and powerful country like the US, since threats are basically nil.

    Another problem is the Boomer Question, whereas some people just want to see the USAF bomb shit to hell and yell in excitement "USAUSAUSA". What they bomb is of lesser importance, or why.

    The final problem is that the media lies about foreign policy almost more than it does about immigration. Most people still don't know that Israel and Turkey were both supporting Al-Qaida elements for much of the war, not to mention the US or the UK. That stuff has to be found outside the Western media, which most people don't have the agency/intellect/curiosity to do.

    All of these factors point to a pessimistic conclusion: probably not much.
    , @Anatoly Karlin
    As Audacious Epigone pointed out, Trump lost the popular vote and only got in by the skin of his teeth, by appealing to constituencies who are earlier disregarded by Republicans.

    Those people are deserting Trump, whereas nobody is deserting the Democrats.

    They may want to keep Mexicans out, but apart from that aren’t really distinguishable from the kind of people who were fans of Bush II (e.g. fanatically pro-Israel with US and Israeli interests being seen as identical, permanent US global hegemony seen as a natural state of affairs, strong hostility to Russia, Iran, China).
     
    I appreciate this argument and it's a good one, but I'm not sure it plays that way. The people you describe will vote Republican regardless (apart from the very "special" case of Never Trumpers For Israel... but they're a genuinely tiny minority). And given narrow margins, I think the loss of the "crossovers and relentless revolutionaries" will be painful.
    , @John Gruskos
    Candidate Trump's denunciation of the Iraq, Libya and Syria wars differentiated him from Ted Cruz, who was just as much of an immigration restrictionist as Trump was.

    Compared to the gold standard, Pat Buchanan, here is how the 2016 Republican presidential candidates ranked:

    Trump - good on immigration, semi-good on foreign policy

    Cruz, Santorum - good on immigration, bad on foreign policy

    Paul - bad on immigration, good on foreign policy

    Establishment candidates - bad on both immigration and foreign policy

    The American far right, which is a much larger group of people than the Richard Spencer Alt-Right, delivered the two greatest electoral upsets in American history when we elected Dave Brat in 2014 and Donald Trump in 2016.

    Avoiding war in Syria was the second most important motivation of the American far right in these campaigns. Only immigration restriction was a more important to the supporters of Brat and Trump.

    For instance, the film director who initiated the Brat campaign (I forget his name, the producer of the Civil War trilogy: Gettysburg, Gods and Generals, and Copperhead) admitted in a NPR interview that Eric Cantor's support for a regime change war in Syria was his primary motivation for pushing Brat to run for congress. All of the prominent right wing politicians and media figures who supported Brat against Cantor have been consistently opposed to regime change war in Syria, and the same is true of the prominent early supporters of Trump's campaign who endorsed him before his big win in Indiana.

    The congressmen who consistently vote against war are all from the most right wing districts (which is to say, the most Protestant old-stock White districts) in America - for instance, John Duncan, Walter Jones, Dana Rohrabacher, Justin Amash, Thomas Massie and Rand Paul.

    The Washington blob simply ignores the mandate of these historic electoral upsets. Policy is proceeding as if Eric Cantor were Speaker of the House and Hillary Clinton were President.

    Is it possible that you, with your German education, find it psychologically impossible to place the blame where we all know it really belongs? Do you simply feel more comfortable blaming those damn American rednecks, because you know that doing so won't get you arrested for hate crimes?
    , @Mikhail
    From someone (not me):

    I spent about 3 hours Saturday night watching the Russian analysis on the strikes, and the real-time videos, thorough military explanations with maps and satellite photos clearly showed what this farce was really like, and it is almost fun to compare the local US media briefings with these proofs. While the Pentagon declares this a "great success" and officials deny that their "smart" and other missiles were shot down, the videos I saw show them exploding in the air; there were 10 targets instead of 3 and the various airports, and other locations, were entirely protected by Syrian air defense systems, so no rockets ever reached them; not a SINGLE British rocket got through at all; the 13 hits that took out rockets by Syrians, as initially reported, were targeting Homs only; the French never actually participated in the bombing - their plane took off from France, flew over US-controlled territory, then flew back; the Brits first boasted that they sent 8 planes, then had to correct and admit there were 4, because in Cyprus they only have a TOTAL of 8 planes and 4 are always in repair/maintenance and everyone knows it. The only casualties were some wounded 3 or 6 people near an exploded arms depot. Two bombed facilities (of the 3 announces targets) were already abandoned, one having been bombed out by Israeli forces a while ago, but one bombed facility was a research center that was mainly devoted to cancer research. Great work!

    The military said that they had helped fix the Soviet-era Syrian defense systems and retrained the personnel over the past year. Russia had NOT used their own latest equipment, which was located in their bases of operation, and the US "coalition" flipped somersaults to avoid any possible hits in these areas because they were warned of definite counter-strikes by Russia. And this was not an empty threat, and they knew it.

    So all this was was bluster, bravado and nothing but a farce - as phony as the staged gas attack, and phony Skripal poisoning.

    , @Mikhail
    From someone (not me):

    I spent about 3hours Saturday night watching the Russian analysis on the strikes, and the real-time videos, thorough military explanations with maps and satellite photos clearly showed what this farce was really like, and it is almost fun to compare the local US media briefings with these proofs. While the Pentagon declares this a "great success" and officials deny that their "smart" and other missiles were shot down, the videos I saw show them exploding in the air; there were 10 targets instead of 3 and the various airports, and other locations, were entirely protected by Syrian air defense systems, so no rockets ever reached them; not a SINGLE British rocket got through at all; the 13 hits that took out rockets by Syrians, as initially reported, were targeting Holms only; the French never actually participated in the bombing - their plane took off from France, flew over US-controlled territory, then flew back; the Brits first boasted that they sent 8 planes, then had to correct and admit there were 4, because in Cypress they only have a TOTAL of 8 planes and 4 are always in repair/maintenance and everyone knows it. The only casualties were some wounded 3 or 6 people near an exploded arms depot. Two bombed facilities (of the 3 announces targets) were already abandoned, one having been bombed out by Israeli forces a while ago, but one bombed facility was a research center that was mainly devoted to cancer research. Great work!

    The military said that they had helped fix the Soviet-era Syrian defense systems and retrained the personnel over the past year. Russia had NOT used their own latest equipment, which was located in their bases of operation, and the US "coalition" flipped somersaults to avoid any possible hits in these areas because they were warned of definite counter-strikes by Russia. And this was not an empty threat, and they knew it.

    So all this was was bluster, bravado and nothing but a farce - as phony as the staged gas attack, and phony Skripal poisoning.
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  2. 5371 says:

    Kazakhstan is hosting the Astana “peace process”, so whether or not that is the real reason for abstention, it does have an excuse.

    Read More
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  3. The single best outcome of the Trump presidency collapse has probably been complete discrediting of the “reform from within” theory. Trump was the royal flush of that theory. Here’s a maverick billionaire who’s willing to go much further than any other candidate and who never simply flinched despite massive negative media coverage.

    The fantasy/delusion that such a person would then, suddenly in the WH, turn even more radical and suddenly sponsor right-wing deportation squads and implement blatantly pro-white policies (starting with immigration) has been exposed as the obvious hoax it always was.

    The US by the 2020s will reach a demographic tipping point that California reached in the early 2000s. The last GOP leader of California was Pete Wilson, who compared to Trump was far bolder and actually had real principles. But it was too late. Trump will likely be the last GOP president for a very, very long time. He already lost the popular vote by a non-trivial margin and hung on by the skin of his teeth. Every year, that performance will be harder. By the mid-2020s, it won’t matter who is president. It will be a one-party state.

    What happens then will be very interesting. Even if “only” 20% of whites radicalise, that is still tens of millions. Furthermore, given the centrality of the US to the political and cultural heart of the rest of the white world, it will have repercussions to us, too.

    China has been uncharacteristically blunt in its support of Syria and Russia

    They’ve been quite staunch for some time now, but words are in the end, just words. Will China risk more than that? I doubt it, and why would they? Syria is just a lot of rocks and sand. Xi Jinping has been threatening Taiwan more than usual lately and they carried out a huge naval exercise in the SCS in the last few weeks.

    The Chinese are smart, not allowing themselves to be dragged in and take the opportunity when the West and Russia are focused on worthless sandlands to push aggressive maneuvers. They won’t have to do much at this point, just avoid trouble and let the West fall in of itself, as this Syria conflict is obviously pushed by the Israel lobby in the US. There is no rational reason why we would support the removal of Assad if it wasn’t for the fact that he is allied with Iran. China wisely stays out of such troubles, and it wisely restricts immigration so that middle eastern tribes cannot gain a foothold within its institutions.

    After all, Chinese history is replete with small foreign tribes nestling their ways into the halls of power. The Manchu were simply the latest ones. Everyone should read about Chinese history from the end of the Qing dynasty to the establishment of the PRC. It has real and valuable lessons for those of us who are now in a similar position that the Chinese themselves were in about 120 years ago.

    Read More
    • Replies: @peterAUS

    Trump will likely be the last GOP president for a very, very long time. He already lost the popular vote by a non-trivial margin and hung on by the skin of his teeth. Every year, that performance will be harder. By the mid-2020s, it won’t matter who is president. It will be a one-party state.
     
    Looks like it.
    , @Sam

    The single best outcome of the Trump presidency collapse has probably been complete discrediting of the “reform from within” theory. Trump was the royal flush of that theory. Here’s a maverick billionaire who’s willing to go much further than any other candidate and who never simply flinched despite massive negative media coverage.

    The fantasy/delusion that such a person would then, suddenly in the WH, turn even more radical and suddenly sponsor right-wing deportation squads and implement blatantly pro-white policies (starting with immigration) has been exposed as the obvious hoax it always was.
     
    To a degree but the worst flaws of Trump were that ultimately he is obsessed with being liked by the smart set, he has no intellect and he is a complete novice politically. Trump is good on his instincts but he is incredibly lazy intellectually. So it is hardly a surprise that the common refrain about him is that he takes the position of the last person he talked with. Even with all these flaws it could all have been mitigated if the personel had merely been in line with campaign. But very few were and on top of that there isn't much institutional infrastructure in Washington that fits an national conservative mould to help staffing or to bark at him when he strays.

    The US by the 2020s will reach a demographic tipping point that California reached in the early 2000s. The last GOP leader of California was Pete Wilson, who compared to Trump was far bolder and actually had real principles. But it was too late. Trump will likely be the last GOP president for a very, very long time. He already lost the popular vote by a non-trivial margin and hung on by the skin of his teeth. Every year, that performance will be harder. By the mid-2020s, it won’t matter who is president. It will be a one-party state.
     
    I doubt that. The GOP will simply adjust to the new demographics by ditching some of their current shibboleths. Remember that as whites become a minority they tend to vote as minorities. As was noted in the last election, the white working class voted more as a racial block. But from what I recall Trump only used half of the Sailer Strategy. The strategy was to get a better geographic composition of the white vote as well as raising it. But Trump actually got less white votes(57%) than Romney(59%).
    So Trump is and was always likely to be a transitionary figure. The precedent of implicit white voting blocks and issues are now on the tip of becoming explicit. A less toxic candidate now has potential to pick up the pieces.Additionally, the mainstream media gets weaker by every election cycle. Lastly, there are always new issues that show up that change voting coalitions. For example, as affirmative action's effects becomes more pervasive on the consciousness of whites and asians it will create new wedges in the culture war.
    , @John Gruskos
    Candidate Trump promised an administration similar to Eisenhower's:

    Low levels of legal immigration (like the McCarren Act), deportation of all illegal immigrants (like Operation Wetback), avoid counter-productive unnecessary wars (Eisenhower ended the Korean War, kept us out of Vietnam, defied the Israel lobby during the Suez Crisis, and moved towards detente with the Soviet Union after the 1957 purge of the "anti-Part group" Kaganovich etc.), balanced trade, relatively progressive taxation and relatively high financial regulation, balanced budgets, and infrastructure spending (interstate highway system).

    Expecting Trump to keep his promises and govern as a moderate nationalist like Eisenhower was not an unrealistic expectation.

    The real lesson is, never trust a man with a son-in-law like Jared Kushner.

    But some other candidate with good character and less New York entanglements, someone who isn't "the most pro-Israel guy", could conceivably beat Trump in the 2020 primaries, win the presidency, and implement Trump's 2020 platform.
    , @songbird
    I wish I could see the parallels between the West and China 120 years ago, but frankly I don't. The demographic situation - the key to all - is dramatically different. Foreigners in China were well below 0.1% of the population, at the time of the Boxer Rebellion. Most of those were men, few had children, almost none could be considered settlers. And they weren't a democracy.

    It is really quite remarkable how the whole thing is remembered by the Chinese and how violent their response was, massacring women and children. I don't mean to China bash - they weren't as developed, and maybe shouldn't be judged on modern standards. But, still, it is quite remarkable how they remember it. Most rational people in the West would be ecstatic to trade histories with the Chinese - our current existential crisis for their humiliation 120 years ago.

    Sorry, I don't mean to be a black pill, but I think the Chinese are naturally more cohesive. A term like "racist" has a hard time gaining traction there. They remember slights; we don't to the same degree.
    , @EliteCommInc.
    Well,



    your playing fast and loose with the expectations. I did not expect the president to be more radical --- I think the expectation was that one would not need an ironing board every other day to take the wrinkles out of what seems to be a suit that folds every day.


    I think there are more effective and cheaper ways of blunting supposed threats in this region.
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  4. @German_reader

    /pol/ no longer cares for him.
     
    I have my doubts though whether internet phenomena like /pol/ or the alt-right in general were ever really important for Trump's victory.
    I get the impression that a non-trivial part of Trump voters are people who have zero problem with an interventionist foreign policy. They may want to keep Mexicans out, but apart from that aren't really distinguishable from the kind of people who were fans of Bush II (e.g. fanatically pro-Israel with US and Israeli interests being seen as identical, permanent US global hegemony seen as a natural state of affairs, strong hostility to Russia, Iran, China). You see such people even on an "alternative" site like Unz review (in Sailer's Syria thread one particularly moronic commenter applauded Lindsey Graham for suggesting Assad should be "taken out"). So I wonder how much Trump has really been hurt by his Syria policy.
    In any case, the fact that Trump actually seems to have favored a more extreme course of action and was only reined in by his military advisers like Mattis is pretty disturbing.

    I wonder how much Trump has really been hurt by his Syria policy.

    One common cliché about electoral politics is that the average voter cares (or knows) almost nothing about foreign policy. This is especially true in a large and powerful country like the US, since threats are basically nil.

    Another problem is the Boomer Question, whereas some people just want to see the USAF bomb shit to hell and yell in excitement “USAUSAUSA”. What they bomb is of lesser importance, or why.

    The final problem is that the media lies about foreign policy almost more than it does about immigration. Most people still don’t know that Israel and Turkey were both supporting Al-Qaida elements for much of the war, not to mention the US or the UK. That stuff has to be found outside the Western media, which most people don’t have the agency/intellect/curiosity to do.

    All of these factors point to a pessimistic conclusion: probably not much.

    Read More
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  5. @German_reader

    /pol/ no longer cares for him.
     
    I have my doubts though whether internet phenomena like /pol/ or the alt-right in general were ever really important for Trump's victory.
    I get the impression that a non-trivial part of Trump voters are people who have zero problem with an interventionist foreign policy. They may want to keep Mexicans out, but apart from that aren't really distinguishable from the kind of people who were fans of Bush II (e.g. fanatically pro-Israel with US and Israeli interests being seen as identical, permanent US global hegemony seen as a natural state of affairs, strong hostility to Russia, Iran, China). You see such people even on an "alternative" site like Unz review (in Sailer's Syria thread one particularly moronic commenter applauded Lindsey Graham for suggesting Assad should be "taken out"). So I wonder how much Trump has really been hurt by his Syria policy.
    In any case, the fact that Trump actually seems to have favored a more extreme course of action and was only reined in by his military advisers like Mattis is pretty disturbing.

    As Audacious Epigone pointed out, Trump lost the popular vote and only got in by the skin of his teeth, by appealing to constituencies who are earlier disregarded by Republicans.

    Those people are deserting Trump, whereas nobody is deserting the Democrats.

    They may want to keep Mexicans out, but apart from that aren’t really distinguishable from the kind of people who were fans of Bush II (e.g. fanatically pro-Israel with US and Israeli interests being seen as identical, permanent US global hegemony seen as a natural state of affairs, strong hostility to Russia, Iran, China).

    I appreciate this argument and it’s a good one, but I’m not sure it plays that way. The people you describe will vote Republican regardless (apart from the very “special” case of Never Trumpers For Israel… but they’re a genuinely tiny minority). And given narrow margins, I think the loss of the “crossovers and relentless revolutionaries” will be painful.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Beckow
    It is too early, by 2020 the situation will change. Trump will probably win big in any case. Democrats have gone into the shallow electoral end of open-borders and identity-uber-alles politics that simply will not play with the majority of voters. The economy (might) be good. There will be peace. And running against Trump for 'more immigration, more PC and affirmative action, slower economy, higher taxes, and more wars' is a loser. People will quietly stay with less of it with Trump than with more as advocated by Democrats.

    Trump was obviously playing the 'I want an extreme course of action' angle, he is a good actor. What happened is exactly what Trump wanted: not much, more dust in Syria, big deal. Symbolic victories are just that - symbols that change nothing and are soon forgotten. Given the total 'message control' in the West, the talk of this bombing establishing a precedent is over-stated. They don't need no 'f..ing precedent', they completely own the narrative in the West. There is no need to have an elderly black gentleman playing with small tubes, or for NY Times to laboriously invent a case for war article by article. This is a neo-Dzingischan era now, us versus them, no rules, winning is 'glorious'. The problem is that Dzingischan actually won his wars, the ideological neo-cons, she-Blair, and the silly boy in Paris, don't seem to win anything.

    Putin is a master of jiu-jitsu - use your opponent's strength to weaken him. The best hope of West against Russia is an economic collapse followed by an internal coup of some kind. That looks very unlikely. China has a strategic interest in keeping Russia's economy afloat, and so do some others, incl. Germany. And Russia has the resources plus nukes - that is very hard to beat. Ideologues always lose at the end.

    , @Sam
    The big coup for the alt right and light movements is that they are affecting the wider conservative movement. The likes of Tucker, Ingram, Coulter(even Tomi Lahren) are coming into the orbit of ideas and attitudes. Those sort of people have stature and talk more directly with regular conservatives. It is in this indirect way that the Alt movements can help shape the average conservative not to mention their disproportional influence on Twitter.

    Others are noticing this change as well.
    https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2018/apr/13/syria-intervention-conservative-rightwing-opposition-trump
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  6. Beckow says:
    @Anatoly Karlin
    As Audacious Epigone pointed out, Trump lost the popular vote and only got in by the skin of his teeth, by appealing to constituencies who are earlier disregarded by Republicans.

    Those people are deserting Trump, whereas nobody is deserting the Democrats.

    They may want to keep Mexicans out, but apart from that aren’t really distinguishable from the kind of people who were fans of Bush II (e.g. fanatically pro-Israel with US and Israeli interests being seen as identical, permanent US global hegemony seen as a natural state of affairs, strong hostility to Russia, Iran, China).
     
    I appreciate this argument and it's a good one, but I'm not sure it plays that way. The people you describe will vote Republican regardless (apart from the very "special" case of Never Trumpers For Israel... but they're a genuinely tiny minority). And given narrow margins, I think the loss of the "crossovers and relentless revolutionaries" will be painful.

    It is too early, by 2020 the situation will change. Trump will probably win big in any case. Democrats have gone into the shallow electoral end of open-borders and identity-uber-alles politics that simply will not play with the majority of voters. The economy (might) be good. There will be peace. And running against Trump for ‘more immigration, more PC and affirmative action, slower economy, higher taxes, and more wars‘ is a loser. People will quietly stay with less of it with Trump than with more as advocated by Democrats.

    Trump was obviously playing the ‘I want an extreme course of action’ angle, he is a good actor. What happened is exactly what Trump wanted: not much, more dust in Syria, big deal. Symbolic victories are just that – symbols that change nothing and are soon forgotten. Given the total ‘message control’ in the West, the talk of this bombing establishing a precedent is over-stated. They don’t need no ‘f..ing precedent’, they completely own the narrative in the West. There is no need to have an elderly black gentleman playing with small tubes, or for NY Times to laboriously invent a case for war article by article. This is a neo-Dzingischan era now, us versus them, no rules, winning is ‘glorious’. The problem is that Dzingischan actually won his wars, the ideological neo-cons, she-Blair, and the silly boy in Paris, don’t seem to win anything.

    Putin is a master of jiu-jitsu – use your opponent’s strength to weaken him. The best hope of West against Russia is an economic collapse followed by an internal coup of some kind. That looks very unlikely. China has a strategic interest in keeping Russia’s economy afloat, and so do some others, incl. Germany. And Russia has the resources plus nukes – that is very hard to beat. Ideologues always lose at the end.

    Read More
    • Agree: Lemurmaniac
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  7. OT: It seems that Berlin is finally becoming a “normal” Western city (in the worst sense of the word”. After being criminally underappreciated for long, it had a brief renaissance from the early 2010s as a “cheap place for students, artists and workers”. Then it bore a large brunt of the 2014-2016 madness. And now it has gone full circle:

    http://www.dw.com/en/thousands-rally-in-berlin-over-world-record-property-prices/a-43389523

    According to Knight Frank, Berlin property prices rose by over 20% in a single year. Rent has been increasing very rapidly for a long time. In a situation where population growth was not as rapid as in recent years, it is unlikely that property prices would have increased as dramatically. Besides, Germans are highly efficient planners (or so I used to think).

    Incidentially, Warsaw’s property prices – in the context of nominal wages growing close to 6.5% per annum – was around 6% YoY. However, bear in mind those price increases are nominal, hence my comparison with nominal wages. (Real wage growth last year was around 4.5%, close to real GDP growth, which is far from always a linear relationship, just ask the brits or the burgers).

    As someone who is in the process of saving up for a large property purchase, the graph below brings joy to my soul.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Polish Perspective
    Oh, for anyone wanting to read the full Knight Frank report (more like a short brief, really), you can do so here.

    They have over 150 cities but here are a few selected ones of interest. The number to the left is their rank on the list. To the right is the nominal price increase YoY.

    1. Berlin (20.5%) - Probably #1 because of a low base. Munich and Hamburg also saw strong increases, so it is a general German phenomenon.
    4. Vancouver (16%) - Despite a tax on foreign (read: Chinese) investment, the insane price increases just keep going for Vancouver.
    5. Budapest (15.5%) - what's going on there, Reiner? Air'n'b? Foreign speculators?
    44. Detroit (7%) - surprised me to be honest
    56. Warsaw (6%)
    74. Paris (4.6%) - do people even want to live here anymore?
    83. Sydney (3.8%)
    101. London (2%)
    119. Moscow (0.2%)
    123. Beijing (-0.2%)
    144. Kiev (-5.1%)

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  8. @Polish Perspective
    OT: It seems that Berlin is finally becoming a "normal" Western city (in the worst sense of the word". After being criminally underappreciated for long, it had a brief renaissance from the early 2010s as a "cheap place for students, artists and workers". Then it bore a large brunt of the 2014-2016 madness. And now it has gone full circle:

    http://www.dw.com/en/thousands-rally-in-berlin-over-world-record-property-prices/a-43389523

    According to Knight Frank, Berlin property prices rose by over 20% in a single year. Rent has been increasing very rapidly for a long time. In a situation where population growth was not as rapid as in recent years, it is unlikely that property prices would have increased as dramatically. Besides, Germans are highly efficient planners (or so I used to think).

    Incidentially, Warsaw's property prices - in the context of nominal wages growing close to 6.5% per annum - was around 6% YoY. However, bear in mind those price increases are nominal, hence my comparison with nominal wages. (Real wage growth last year was around 4.5%, close to real GDP growth, which is far from always a linear relationship, just ask the brits or the burgers).

    As someone who is in the process of saving up for a large property purchase, the graph below brings joy to my soul.

    http://www.imf.org/external/research/housing/images/pricetoincome_lg.jpg

    Oh, for anyone wanting to read the full Knight Frank report (more like a short brief, really), you can do so here.

    They have over 150 cities but here are a few selected ones of interest. The number to the left is their rank on the list. To the right is the nominal price increase YoY.

    1. Berlin (20.5%) – Probably #1 because of a low base. Munich and Hamburg also saw strong increases, so it is a general German phenomenon.
    4. Vancouver (16%) – Despite a tax on foreign (read: Chinese) investment, the insane price increases just keep going for Vancouver.
    5. Budapest (15.5%) – what’s going on there, Reiner? Air’n’b? Foreign speculators?
    44. Detroit (7%) – surprised me to be honest
    56. Warsaw (6%)
    74. Paris (4.6%) – do people even want to live here anymore?
    83. Sydney (3.8%)
    101. London (2%)
    119. Moscow (0.2%)
    123. Beijing (-0.2%)
    144. Kiev (-5.1%)

    Read More
    • Replies: @German_reader

    Munich and Hamburg also saw strong increases, so it is a general German phenomenon.
     
    At least in part that's due to the influx of "refugees" on the housing market.
    One can forget about Berlin and Hamburg anyway, they're well on their way to becoming majority non-German cities. Munich seems to be getting worse too.
    , @Dmitry
    Of the cities on the list I have not yet visited, I have heard very good things about Vancouver and Sydney.
    , @E. Harding
    Detroit does not surprise me at all; it had nowhere to go but up, and the current White mayor is doing a decent job demolishing abandoned housing, putting up windows in abandoned structures, and fixing streetlights.

    Los Angeles kind of surprised me, but that's obviously due to Chinese purchases.

    Dallas remains a mystery.

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  9. Sean says:

    Being linked to Iran is the route to WW3 for Russia. The US may not care very much about Syria but it will wage war on Iran, and they’ll not wait for Trump’s second term to start it. The time has come for Russia to divest itself of any association with Iran.

    https://www.traditionalright.com/the-view-from-olympus-the-worst-possible-choice/

    From his past statements it appears Mr. Bolton most of all wants wars with … Iran. [.] But since its founding Likud’s objective has been an Israel stretching from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean. ,,, But a one-state solution means an Israel with an Arab and a Moslem majority, which Likud also finds unacceptable. So Likud needs to ethnically cleanse Palestine of Arabs. And to do that, it needs a big war in the region…. The assignment of American neo-cons is now to start a war with Iran, as their previous assignment was to start the war with Iraq. And one of their number is now President Trump’s National Security Advisor.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Mitleser
    If Iran falls, Russia will be next.
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  10. @Polish Perspective
    Oh, for anyone wanting to read the full Knight Frank report (more like a short brief, really), you can do so here.

    They have over 150 cities but here are a few selected ones of interest. The number to the left is their rank on the list. To the right is the nominal price increase YoY.

    1. Berlin (20.5%) - Probably #1 because of a low base. Munich and Hamburg also saw strong increases, so it is a general German phenomenon.
    4. Vancouver (16%) - Despite a tax on foreign (read: Chinese) investment, the insane price increases just keep going for Vancouver.
    5. Budapest (15.5%) - what's going on there, Reiner? Air'n'b? Foreign speculators?
    44. Detroit (7%) - surprised me to be honest
    56. Warsaw (6%)
    74. Paris (4.6%) - do people even want to live here anymore?
    83. Sydney (3.8%)
    101. London (2%)
    119. Moscow (0.2%)
    123. Beijing (-0.2%)
    144. Kiev (-5.1%)

    Munich and Hamburg also saw strong increases, so it is a general German phenomenon.

    At least in part that’s due to the influx of “refugees” on the housing market.
    One can forget about Berlin and Hamburg anyway, they’re well on their way to becoming majority non-German cities. Munich seems to be getting worse too.

    Read More
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  11. Dmitry says:

    Trump’s success/failure in 2020 will depend firstly on the economic situation in 2020. If the economy is good, I think I have read that the president has almost always won the second term.

    The secondary factor will be who is the Democratic Party nomination for 2020, and what is their potential popularity. So far people have mentioned as a possibility Joe Biden and Elizabeth Warren.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dmitry
    Finally, the only thing that decides the result in the American election, are what are called the 'swing states' (these can vote for both parties).

    Some of these have unusual features. For example, in Florida, there is a large demographic of Latinos (who voted Trump in 2016), who by itself have potentialities for changing the whole election scenario. E.g. In this case, this could change if the Democratic Party have a Latino candidate in 2020 (but I have not heard of such a Democratic politician so far).
    , @Aslangeo
    If the democrats choose a throwback like Biden or Warren then they would probably lose. If they want to win I would look for the following type of candidate

    1. A man - after Hillary women politicians would need a bit of a backseat
    2. A white man - to appeal to the Trump swing voters
    3. somebody younger - in their 40's and vigorous - contrast to a Trump who will be pushing 74 and may not be in good health
    4. From a mid-western or southern state, the coastal states are the democrats anyway - the smart democrats will need to realise that they need to win the central ground
    5. Moderate - extreme liberalism does not attract new voters - the core vote will come out for you anyway and will project their fantasies on you
    6. keen to avoid foreign wars - Trump said that on the stump but changed his mind when he entered the white house

    Any ideas ?
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  12. Dmitry says:
    @Dmitry
    Trump's success/failure in 2020 will depend firstly on the economic situation in 2020. If the economy is good, I think I have read that the president has almost always won the second term.

    The secondary factor will be who is the Democratic Party nomination for 2020, and what is their potential popularity. So far people have mentioned as a possibility Joe Biden and Elizabeth Warren.

    Finally, the only thing that decides the result in the American election, are what are called the ‘swing states’ (these can vote for both parties).

    Some of these have unusual features. For example, in Florida, there is a large demographic of Latinos (who voted Trump in 2016), who by itself have potentialities for changing the whole election scenario. E.g. In this case, this could change if the Democratic Party have a Latino candidate in 2020 (but I have not heard of such a Democratic politician so far).

    Read More
    • Replies: @Anon
    Trump only won by narrowly flipping states like Pennsylvania and Wisconsin that aren't considered swing states, states that hadn't voted Republican since the 80s. Running on a typical GOP record instead of the populist promises of 2016, it's highly unlikely he'll be to pull this off a second time. Barring total incompetence from the DNC saving him, he'll just repeat Romney's 2012 electoral map and be a one-term president.
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  13. Dmitry says:
    @Polish Perspective
    Oh, for anyone wanting to read the full Knight Frank report (more like a short brief, really), you can do so here.

    They have over 150 cities but here are a few selected ones of interest. The number to the left is their rank on the list. To the right is the nominal price increase YoY.

    1. Berlin (20.5%) - Probably #1 because of a low base. Munich and Hamburg also saw strong increases, so it is a general German phenomenon.
    4. Vancouver (16%) - Despite a tax on foreign (read: Chinese) investment, the insane price increases just keep going for Vancouver.
    5. Budapest (15.5%) - what's going on there, Reiner? Air'n'b? Foreign speculators?
    44. Detroit (7%) - surprised me to be honest
    56. Warsaw (6%)
    74. Paris (4.6%) - do people even want to live here anymore?
    83. Sydney (3.8%)
    101. London (2%)
    119. Moscow (0.2%)
    123. Beijing (-0.2%)
    144. Kiev (-5.1%)

    Of the cities on the list I have not yet visited, I have heard very good things about Vancouver and Sydney.

    Read More
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  14. peterAUS says:

    Good article.

    The crux, IMHO, is

    Trump has locked himself into an escalatory cycle. The jihadis now know that all they need to do to provoke geometrically expanding retaliations against Assad is to continue setting up false flag gas attacks. Talk of perverse incentives. As this cycle plays out, the chances of Russian forces entering into hostilities with US and coalition forces will continue to increase.

    And I am afraid it won’t be

    we are going to be living under the risk of such a development

    just re Syria but everywhere along the line of the confrontation.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Mikhail
    For sure.

    https://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2018/04/17/latest-atlanticist-tough-guy-act.html
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  15. peterAUS says:
    @Polish Perspective
    The single best outcome of the Trump presidency collapse has probably been complete discrediting of the "reform from within" theory. Trump was the royal flush of that theory. Here's a maverick billionaire who's willing to go much further than any other candidate and who never simply flinched despite massive negative media coverage.

    The fantasy/delusion that such a person would then, suddenly in the WH, turn even more radical and suddenly sponsor right-wing deportation squads and implement blatantly pro-white policies (starting with immigration) has been exposed as the obvious hoax it always was.

    The US by the 2020s will reach a demographic tipping point that California reached in the early 2000s. The last GOP leader of California was Pete Wilson, who compared to Trump was far bolder and actually had real principles. But it was too late. Trump will likely be the last GOP president for a very, very long time. He already lost the popular vote by a non-trivial margin and hung on by the skin of his teeth. Every year, that performance will be harder. By the mid-2020s, it won't matter who is president. It will be a one-party state.

    What happens then will be very interesting. Even if "only" 20% of whites radicalise, that is still tens of millions. Furthermore, given the centrality of the US to the political and cultural heart of the rest of the white world, it will have repercussions to us, too.


    China has been uncharacteristically blunt in its support of Syria and Russia
     
    They've been quite staunch for some time now, but words are in the end, just words. Will China risk more than that? I doubt it, and why would they? Syria is just a lot of rocks and sand. Xi Jinping has been threatening Taiwan more than usual lately and they carried out a huge naval exercise in the SCS in the last few weeks.

    The Chinese are smart, not allowing themselves to be dragged in and take the opportunity when the West and Russia are focused on worthless sandlands to push aggressive maneuvers. They won't have to do much at this point, just avoid trouble and let the West fall in of itself, as this Syria conflict is obviously pushed by the Israel lobby in the US. There is no rational reason why we would support the removal of Assad if it wasn't for the fact that he is allied with Iran. China wisely stays out of such troubles, and it wisely restricts immigration so that middle eastern tribes cannot gain a foothold within its institutions.

    After all, Chinese history is replete with small foreign tribes nestling their ways into the halls of power. The Manchu were simply the latest ones. Everyone should read about Chinese history from the end of the Qing dynasty to the establishment of the PRC. It has real and valuable lessons for those of us who are now in a similar position that the Chinese themselves were in about 120 years ago.

    Trump will likely be the last GOP president for a very, very long time. He already lost the popular vote by a non-trivial margin and hung on by the skin of his teeth. Every year, that performance will be harder. By the mid-2020s, it won’t matter who is president. It will be a one-party state.

    Looks like it.

    Read More
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  16. Anon[205] • Disclaimer says:
    @Dmitry
    Finally, the only thing that decides the result in the American election, are what are called the 'swing states' (these can vote for both parties).

    Some of these have unusual features. For example, in Florida, there is a large demographic of Latinos (who voted Trump in 2016), who by itself have potentialities for changing the whole election scenario. E.g. In this case, this could change if the Democratic Party have a Latino candidate in 2020 (but I have not heard of such a Democratic politician so far).

    Trump only won by narrowly flipping states like Pennsylvania and Wisconsin that aren’t considered swing states, states that hadn’t voted Republican since the 80s. Running on a typical GOP record instead of the populist promises of 2016, it’s highly unlikely he’ll be to pull this off a second time. Barring total incompetence from the DNC saving him, he’ll just repeat Romney’s 2012 electoral map and be a one-term president.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dmitry
    There is an interesting comment here, which is related to the 'Keys to the White House model'.

    There are 13 keys.

    We won't know yet until the election year, for all of these.

    https://www.quora.com/Will-Trump-wins-reelection-in-2020-will-things-stay-the-same-Will-states-like-Wisconsin-Pennsylvania-and-Michigan-vote-for-him-again


    He needs 5 or less of the statements to be false, in order to win.

    The keys are (I copypaste from Wikipedia):

    1.Party Mandate: After the midterm elections, the incumbent party holds more seats in the U.S. House of Representatives than after the previous midterm elections.
    2.Contest: There is no serious contest for the incumbent party nomination.
    3.Incumbency: The incumbent party candidate is the sitting president.
    4.Third party: There is no significant third party or independent campaign.
    5.Short term economy: The economy is not in recession during the election campaign.
    6.Long term economy: Real per capita economic growth during the term equals or exceeds mean growth during the previous two terms.
    7.Policy change: The incumbent administration effects major changes in national policy.
    8.Social unrest: There is no sustained social unrest during the term.
    9.Scandal: The incumbent administration is untainted by major scandal.
    10.Foreign/military failure: The incumbent administration suffers no major failure in foreign or military affairs.
    11.Foreign/military success: The incumbent administration achieves a major success in foreign or military affairs.
    12.Incumbent charisma: The incumbent party candidate is charismatic or a national hero.
    13.Challenger charisma: The challenging party candidate is not charismatic or a national hero.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Keys_to_the_White_House#The_13_Keys_to_the_White_House

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  17. Mikel says:

    With the dust settled (for now), I’d give realists/pessimists like Karlin a score of 9, and advocates of the big military technological advantage of the Russians (Martyanov, Saker, FB) a 1. I’m not giving them a 0 just because, in the end, Mattis (and probably the Europeans) convinced the hawks to go for a cautious symbolic attack.

    I do realize that Russian officials are threatening with “very grave” consequences for their partner-enemies and that, unfortunately, this is by no means over. The Russian inaction must have emboldened the hawks, with some of the worst among them barely starting to enjoy the highly privileged positions Trump has just given them. But, as the Israelis had already demonstrated at the beginning of the week, penetrating the Syrian-Russian AD, even to kill their foreign allies, is not really very difficult and the allied attack of Friday was a just a second proof of concept.

    By staying idle, Russia has misssed a tremendous opportunity to showcase that purported technological edge. Apparently, the missiles launched against the Homs targets practically overflew the Khmeimim air base. This is not going to help in the slightest to find any new contracts for Russian military equipment. According to Rambler, Turkey is no longer buying the S-400 system.

    Apart from the purely technical-military side, Russia has been shown to be a weak ally to have, overwhelmed by a much stronger coalition of forces and willing to save its assets, if at all, but not to defend you from a direct attack. Can anyone imagine an ally of the US with a strong American military presence on the ground being bombed by the Russians with the US not defending that country and not retaliating? All the comments I’ve seen to colonelcassad’s posts channel disappointment and humiliation. I presume they’re a rather reliable sample of the general Russian public opinion.

    As Anatoly says, it is actually very good that the Russians didn’t escalate because we’ve all been spared the possibility of nuclear Armaggedon. But a humiliated, weakened Russia (new round of sanctions announced for Monday) with no prospects of ever ceasing to be cornered by the West (false flags included as required) may be even more dangerous for the prospect of that final outcome.

    Read More
    • Replies: @peterAUS
    Couldn't agree more.

    Only one thing, perhaps.
    Never bought that "technological edge",but, this humiliation has nothing to do with that, IMHO.
    Weapons systems are O.K.

    "This" is directly related to the regime in Kremlin.
    Weakness is there.

    Now, why is that is a different story and, apparently, not important do discuss.
    Good.
    , @Anatoly Karlin
    Yeah, as peterAUS said, I'm not sure to what extent this was a humiliation.

    Negative - FUKUS attacked sovereign country (which, incidentally, Russia does not have a strict formal obligation to defend).

    Positive - They took care to launch from out of range of Russian AD; attacked targets that had been cleared out in advance; it seems that Syrian AD had a 70% interception rate (which is highly impressive, for upgraded 1980s Soviet hardware manned by Syrians); China strongly supported Russia's position.
    And of course catastrophic scenarios, e.g. actual Russian defeat/humiliation, as would happen in an all-out confrontation, did not come to pass.
    , @LondonBob
    Good trolling.

    Europeans in general are getting more and more weary, unity is not there on Russia or Syria. One of the purposes of the strikes was to split Turkey and Russia, Afrin is why the S400 will not go ahead. Soviet made defensive systems proved themselves again, good reason the Israelis are terrified of the S300.
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  18. Dmitry says:

    It hasn’t been mentioned yet one of the main news stories of the week – Telegram is going to get banned. And Viber will probably be the choice for communication by government officials.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
    Typical of the kremlins. Ban the Russian technology, adopt a foreign (Israeli) one.

    https://twitter.com/akarlin88/status/984724745177444352
    , @Swedish Family

    It hasn’t been mentioned yet one of the main news stories of the week – Telegram is going to get banned. And Viber will probably be the choice for communication by government officials.
     
    This is disappointing. At a minimum, they should have gone for Messenger and WhatsApp too, and I still don't understand why the Kremlin doesn't take action against the likes of Facebook and Google. These are effectively hostile surveillance operations in Russia's midst.
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  19. peterAUS says:
    @Mikel
    With the dust settled (for now), I'd give realists/pessimists like Karlin a score of 9, and advocates of the big military technological advantage of the Russians (Martyanov, Saker, FB) a 1. I'm not giving them a 0 just because, in the end, Mattis (and probably the Europeans) convinced the hawks to go for a cautious symbolic attack.

    I do realize that Russian officials are threatening with "very grave" consequences for their partner-enemies and that, unfortunately, this is by no means over. The Russian inaction must have emboldened the hawks, with some of the worst among them barely starting to enjoy the highly privileged positions Trump has just given them. But, as the Israelis had already demonstrated at the beginning of the week, penetrating the Syrian-Russian AD, even to kill their foreign allies, is not really very difficult and the allied attack of Friday was a just a second proof of concept.

    By staying idle, Russia has misssed a tremendous opportunity to showcase that purported technological edge. Apparently, the missiles launched against the Homs targets practically overflew the Khmeimim air base. This is not going to help in the slightest to find any new contracts for Russian military equipment. According to Rambler, Turkey is no longer buying the S-400 system.

    Apart from the purely technical-military side, Russia has been shown to be a weak ally to have, overwhelmed by a much stronger coalition of forces and willing to save its assets, if at all, but not to defend you from a direct attack. Can anyone imagine an ally of the US with a strong American military presence on the ground being bombed by the Russians with the US not defending that country and not retaliating? All the comments I've seen to colonelcassad's posts channel disappointment and humiliation. I presume they're a rather reliable sample of the general Russian public opinion.

    As Anatoly says, it is actually very good that the Russians didn't escalate because we've all been spared the possibility of nuclear Armaggedon. But a humiliated, weakened Russia (new round of sanctions announced for Monday) with no prospects of ever ceasing to be cornered by the West (false flags included as required) may be even more dangerous for the prospect of that final outcome.

    Couldn’t agree more.

    Only one thing, perhaps.
    Never bought that “technological edge”,but, this humiliation has nothing to do with that, IMHO.
    Weapons systems are O.K.

    “This” is directly related to the regime in Kremlin.
    Weakness is there.

    Now, why is that is a different story and, apparently, not important do discuss.
    Good.

    Read More
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  20. @Polish Perspective
    Oh, for anyone wanting to read the full Knight Frank report (more like a short brief, really), you can do so here.

    They have over 150 cities but here are a few selected ones of interest. The number to the left is their rank on the list. To the right is the nominal price increase YoY.

    1. Berlin (20.5%) - Probably #1 because of a low base. Munich and Hamburg also saw strong increases, so it is a general German phenomenon.
    4. Vancouver (16%) - Despite a tax on foreign (read: Chinese) investment, the insane price increases just keep going for Vancouver.
    5. Budapest (15.5%) - what's going on there, Reiner? Air'n'b? Foreign speculators?
    44. Detroit (7%) - surprised me to be honest
    56. Warsaw (6%)
    74. Paris (4.6%) - do people even want to live here anymore?
    83. Sydney (3.8%)
    101. London (2%)
    119. Moscow (0.2%)
    123. Beijing (-0.2%)
    144. Kiev (-5.1%)

    Detroit does not surprise me at all; it had nowhere to go but up, and the current White mayor is doing a decent job demolishing abandoned housing, putting up windows in abandoned structures, and fixing streetlights.

    Los Angeles kind of surprised me, but that’s obviously due to Chinese purchases.

    Dallas remains a mystery.

    Read More
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  21. Dmitry says:
    @Anon
    Trump only won by narrowly flipping states like Pennsylvania and Wisconsin that aren't considered swing states, states that hadn't voted Republican since the 80s. Running on a typical GOP record instead of the populist promises of 2016, it's highly unlikely he'll be to pull this off a second time. Barring total incompetence from the DNC saving him, he'll just repeat Romney's 2012 electoral map and be a one-term president.

    There is an interesting comment here, which is related to the ‘Keys to the White House model’.

    There are 13 keys.

    We won’t know yet until the election year, for all of these.

    https://www.quora.com/Will-Trump-wins-reelection-in-2020-will-things-stay-the-same-Will-states-like-Wisconsin-Pennsylvania-and-Michigan-vote-for-him-again

    He needs 5 or less of the statements to be false, in order to win.

    The keys are (I copypaste from Wikipedia):

    1.Party Mandate: After the midterm elections, the incumbent party holds more seats in the U.S. House of Representatives than after the previous midterm elections.
    2.Contest: There is no serious contest for the incumbent party nomination.
    3.Incumbency: The incumbent party candidate is the sitting president.
    4.Third party: There is no significant third party or independent campaign.
    5.Short term economy: The economy is not in recession during the election campaign.
    6.Long term economy: Real per capita economic growth during the term equals or exceeds mean growth during the previous two terms.
    7.Policy change: The incumbent administration effects major changes in national policy.
    8.Social unrest: There is no sustained social unrest during the term.
    9.Scandal: The incumbent administration is untainted by major scandal.
    10.Foreign/military failure: The incumbent administration suffers no major failure in foreign or military affairs.
    11.Foreign/military success: The incumbent administration achieves a major success in foreign or military affairs.
    12.Incumbent charisma: The incumbent party candidate is charismatic or a national hero.
    13.Challenger charisma: The challenging party candidate is not charismatic or a national hero.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Keys_to_the_White_House#The_13_Keys_to_the_White_House

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    • Replies: @Philip Owen
    So where does that leave Zuckerberg? He beats Trump on the important "If you are so smart why ain't you rich?" question.
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  22. @Dmitry
    It hasn't been mentioned yet one of the main news stories of the week - Telegram is going to get banned. And Viber will probably be the choice for communication by government officials.

    Typical of the kremlins. Ban the Russian technology, adopt a foreign (Israeli) one.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dmitry
    I guess it's not surprising though, considering who owns the company, and his past history with the authorities.

    an the Russian technology, adopt a foreign (Israeli) one.

     

    The irony because all people I know in Israel, are using Telegram.
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  23. Sam says:
    @Polish Perspective
    The single best outcome of the Trump presidency collapse has probably been complete discrediting of the "reform from within" theory. Trump was the royal flush of that theory. Here's a maverick billionaire who's willing to go much further than any other candidate and who never simply flinched despite massive negative media coverage.

    The fantasy/delusion that such a person would then, suddenly in the WH, turn even more radical and suddenly sponsor right-wing deportation squads and implement blatantly pro-white policies (starting with immigration) has been exposed as the obvious hoax it always was.

    The US by the 2020s will reach a demographic tipping point that California reached in the early 2000s. The last GOP leader of California was Pete Wilson, who compared to Trump was far bolder and actually had real principles. But it was too late. Trump will likely be the last GOP president for a very, very long time. He already lost the popular vote by a non-trivial margin and hung on by the skin of his teeth. Every year, that performance will be harder. By the mid-2020s, it won't matter who is president. It will be a one-party state.

    What happens then will be very interesting. Even if "only" 20% of whites radicalise, that is still tens of millions. Furthermore, given the centrality of the US to the political and cultural heart of the rest of the white world, it will have repercussions to us, too.


    China has been uncharacteristically blunt in its support of Syria and Russia
     
    They've been quite staunch for some time now, but words are in the end, just words. Will China risk more than that? I doubt it, and why would they? Syria is just a lot of rocks and sand. Xi Jinping has been threatening Taiwan more than usual lately and they carried out a huge naval exercise in the SCS in the last few weeks.

    The Chinese are smart, not allowing themselves to be dragged in and take the opportunity when the West and Russia are focused on worthless sandlands to push aggressive maneuvers. They won't have to do much at this point, just avoid trouble and let the West fall in of itself, as this Syria conflict is obviously pushed by the Israel lobby in the US. There is no rational reason why we would support the removal of Assad if it wasn't for the fact that he is allied with Iran. China wisely stays out of such troubles, and it wisely restricts immigration so that middle eastern tribes cannot gain a foothold within its institutions.

    After all, Chinese history is replete with small foreign tribes nestling their ways into the halls of power. The Manchu were simply the latest ones. Everyone should read about Chinese history from the end of the Qing dynasty to the establishment of the PRC. It has real and valuable lessons for those of us who are now in a similar position that the Chinese themselves were in about 120 years ago.

    The single best outcome of the Trump presidency collapse has probably been complete discrediting of the “reform from within” theory. Trump was the royal flush of that theory. Here’s a maverick billionaire who’s willing to go much further than any other candidate and who never simply flinched despite massive negative media coverage.

    The fantasy/delusion that such a person would then, suddenly in the WH, turn even more radical and suddenly sponsor right-wing deportation squads and implement blatantly pro-white policies (starting with immigration) has been exposed as the obvious hoax it always was.

    To a degree but the worst flaws of Trump were that ultimately he is obsessed with being liked by the smart set, he has no intellect and he is a complete novice politically. Trump is good on his instincts but he is incredibly lazy intellectually. So it is hardly a surprise that the common refrain about him is that he takes the position of the last person he talked with. Even with all these flaws it could all have been mitigated if the personel had merely been in line with campaign. But very few were and on top of that there isn’t much institutional infrastructure in Washington that fits an national conservative mould to help staffing or to bark at him when he strays.

    The US by the 2020s will reach a demographic tipping point that California reached in the early 2000s. The last GOP leader of California was Pete Wilson, who compared to Trump was far bolder and actually had real principles. But it was too late. Trump will likely be the last GOP president for a very, very long time. He already lost the popular vote by a non-trivial margin and hung on by the skin of his teeth. Every year, that performance will be harder. By the mid-2020s, it won’t matter who is president. It will be a one-party state.

    I doubt that. The GOP will simply adjust to the new demographics by ditching some of their current shibboleths. Remember that as whites become a minority they tend to vote as minorities. As was noted in the last election, the white working class voted more as a racial block. But from what I recall Trump only used half of the Sailer Strategy. The strategy was to get a better geographic composition of the white vote as well as raising it. But Trump actually got less white votes(57%) than Romney(59%).
    So Trump is and was always likely to be a transitionary figure. The precedent of implicit white voting blocks and issues are now on the tip of becoming explicit. A less toxic candidate now has potential to pick up the pieces.Additionally, the mainstream media gets weaker by every election cycle. Lastly, there are always new issues that show up that change voting coalitions. For example, as affirmative action’s effects becomes more pervasive on the consciousness of whites and asians it will create new wedges in the culture war.

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    • Replies: @dfordoom

    As was noted in the last election, the white working class voted more as a racial block.
     
    Did they? Or did they simply vote for their class interests?
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  24. @Mikel
    With the dust settled (for now), I'd give realists/pessimists like Karlin a score of 9, and advocates of the big military technological advantage of the Russians (Martyanov, Saker, FB) a 1. I'm not giving them a 0 just because, in the end, Mattis (and probably the Europeans) convinced the hawks to go for a cautious symbolic attack.

    I do realize that Russian officials are threatening with "very grave" consequences for their partner-enemies and that, unfortunately, this is by no means over. The Russian inaction must have emboldened the hawks, with some of the worst among them barely starting to enjoy the highly privileged positions Trump has just given them. But, as the Israelis had already demonstrated at the beginning of the week, penetrating the Syrian-Russian AD, even to kill their foreign allies, is not really very difficult and the allied attack of Friday was a just a second proof of concept.

    By staying idle, Russia has misssed a tremendous opportunity to showcase that purported technological edge. Apparently, the missiles launched against the Homs targets practically overflew the Khmeimim air base. This is not going to help in the slightest to find any new contracts for Russian military equipment. According to Rambler, Turkey is no longer buying the S-400 system.

    Apart from the purely technical-military side, Russia has been shown to be a weak ally to have, overwhelmed by a much stronger coalition of forces and willing to save its assets, if at all, but not to defend you from a direct attack. Can anyone imagine an ally of the US with a strong American military presence on the ground being bombed by the Russians with the US not defending that country and not retaliating? All the comments I've seen to colonelcassad's posts channel disappointment and humiliation. I presume they're a rather reliable sample of the general Russian public opinion.

    As Anatoly says, it is actually very good that the Russians didn't escalate because we've all been spared the possibility of nuclear Armaggedon. But a humiliated, weakened Russia (new round of sanctions announced for Monday) with no prospects of ever ceasing to be cornered by the West (false flags included as required) may be even more dangerous for the prospect of that final outcome.

    Yeah, as peterAUS said, I’m not sure to what extent this was a humiliation.

    Negative – FUKUS attacked sovereign country (which, incidentally, Russia does not have a strict formal obligation to defend).

    Positive – They took care to launch from out of range of Russian AD; attacked targets that had been cleared out in advance; it seems that Syrian AD had a 70% interception rate (which is highly impressive, for upgraded 1980s Soviet hardware manned by Syrians); China strongly supported Russia’s position.
    And of course catastrophic scenarios, e.g. actual Russian defeat/humiliation, as would happen in an all-out confrontation, did not come to pass.

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    • Replies: @Mikel

    Yeah, as peterAUS said, I’m not sure to what extent this was a humiliation.

     

    If most everybody in the world (including a good chunk of you own people) think that you have been humiliated, then you have been humiliated, by definition. This is not a technical/quantitative term, it's a subjective/psychological one.

    With that said, you know much better than me how representative of the Russian public mood commenters at colonelcassad are. I haven't checked anywhere else. And we'll never know for sure how many interceptions there were but the Pentagon announced a strike on Syria, the targets they talked about were indeed hit by at least some missiles, the Russian didn't do anything visible about it and I think that's all there is to it, re humiliation perceptions.
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  25. LondonBob says:
    @Mikel
    With the dust settled (for now), I'd give realists/pessimists like Karlin a score of 9, and advocates of the big military technological advantage of the Russians (Martyanov, Saker, FB) a 1. I'm not giving them a 0 just because, in the end, Mattis (and probably the Europeans) convinced the hawks to go for a cautious symbolic attack.

    I do realize that Russian officials are threatening with "very grave" consequences for their partner-enemies and that, unfortunately, this is by no means over. The Russian inaction must have emboldened the hawks, with some of the worst among them barely starting to enjoy the highly privileged positions Trump has just given them. But, as the Israelis had already demonstrated at the beginning of the week, penetrating the Syrian-Russian AD, even to kill their foreign allies, is not really very difficult and the allied attack of Friday was a just a second proof of concept.

    By staying idle, Russia has misssed a tremendous opportunity to showcase that purported technological edge. Apparently, the missiles launched against the Homs targets practically overflew the Khmeimim air base. This is not going to help in the slightest to find any new contracts for Russian military equipment. According to Rambler, Turkey is no longer buying the S-400 system.

    Apart from the purely technical-military side, Russia has been shown to be a weak ally to have, overwhelmed by a much stronger coalition of forces and willing to save its assets, if at all, but not to defend you from a direct attack. Can anyone imagine an ally of the US with a strong American military presence on the ground being bombed by the Russians with the US not defending that country and not retaliating? All the comments I've seen to colonelcassad's posts channel disappointment and humiliation. I presume they're a rather reliable sample of the general Russian public opinion.

    As Anatoly says, it is actually very good that the Russians didn't escalate because we've all been spared the possibility of nuclear Armaggedon. But a humiliated, weakened Russia (new round of sanctions announced for Monday) with no prospects of ever ceasing to be cornered by the West (false flags included as required) may be even more dangerous for the prospect of that final outcome.

    Good trolling.

    Europeans in general are getting more and more weary, unity is not there on Russia or Syria. One of the purposes of the strikes was to split Turkey and Russia, Afrin is why the S400 will not go ahead. Soviet made defensive systems proved themselves again, good reason the Israelis are terrified of the S300.

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  26. Sam says:
    @Anatoly Karlin
    As Audacious Epigone pointed out, Trump lost the popular vote and only got in by the skin of his teeth, by appealing to constituencies who are earlier disregarded by Republicans.

    Those people are deserting Trump, whereas nobody is deserting the Democrats.

    They may want to keep Mexicans out, but apart from that aren’t really distinguishable from the kind of people who were fans of Bush II (e.g. fanatically pro-Israel with US and Israeli interests being seen as identical, permanent US global hegemony seen as a natural state of affairs, strong hostility to Russia, Iran, China).
     
    I appreciate this argument and it's a good one, but I'm not sure it plays that way. The people you describe will vote Republican regardless (apart from the very "special" case of Never Trumpers For Israel... but they're a genuinely tiny minority). And given narrow margins, I think the loss of the "crossovers and relentless revolutionaries" will be painful.

    The big coup for the alt right and light movements is that they are affecting the wider conservative movement. The likes of Tucker, Ingram, Coulter(even Tomi Lahren) are coming into the orbit of ideas and attitudes. Those sort of people have stature and talk more directly with regular conservatives. It is in this indirect way that the Alt movements can help shape the average conservative not to mention their disproportional influence on Twitter.

    Others are noticing this change as well.

    https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2018/apr/13/syria-intervention-conservative-rightwing-opposition-trump

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  27. On US copyright – I was always under the impression that the (well one) reason so many hacks and DoS attacks get traced to Russia is that Russians run a lot of unlicensed software on their pcs which become vulnerable to being taken over by bots.
    Likewise the biggest providers on non-copyright materials of the kind I look for (mostly football) seem to be provided by Russians, often with Cyrillic titles.

    In other words all Russia would be doing is to confirm the status quo!

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  28. Philip Owen says: • Website

    The Israeli media which is usually hard headed about security issues seems to believe the US story of no interceptions. That being the case, the bomb craters at the three sites are not so big. The Storm Shadows have on board cameras that operate when closing in on the target to enable shutdown if in error. So there should be no doubt about any Storm Shadow losses. They fly very low, below 100 ft according to brochureware. Nothing from the 1980′s should be able to touch them. No airport was hit. Were any targetted? Whatever the kill rate, the tomahawks did get through last time. The Israelis think they were effective at destroying planes.

    Yesterday, various Russian parliamentarians were demanding that Syria, Iran and North Korea are immediately supplied with S300s. That doesn’t suggest successful hit rates for existing equipment.

    I think that, equipment failures apart, they all got through. They hit buildings already inspected for chemical weapons and declared to be decommissioned. There was no office or lab debris at the Damascus site. They hit empty buildings. The Growler running the ECM had been taken out of retirement to control the attack. The only people who gave anything away were the British and French with the Storm Shadows. All other equipment involved was about obsolete. This can be considered a successful P3-Russo-Syrian joint operation.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Lemurmaniac
    the pantsir point defence system is modern, and is part of the inner ring of the Russian air defence network. The Syrians have been supplied recent models. Russian electronic warfare and tracking data was probably also fed to Syrian systems, so the storm shadows may not have been invulnerable.
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  29. Philip Owen says: • Website
    @Dmitry
    There is an interesting comment here, which is related to the 'Keys to the White House model'.

    There are 13 keys.

    We won't know yet until the election year, for all of these.

    https://www.quora.com/Will-Trump-wins-reelection-in-2020-will-things-stay-the-same-Will-states-like-Wisconsin-Pennsylvania-and-Michigan-vote-for-him-again


    He needs 5 or less of the statements to be false, in order to win.

    The keys are (I copypaste from Wikipedia):

    1.Party Mandate: After the midterm elections, the incumbent party holds more seats in the U.S. House of Representatives than after the previous midterm elections.
    2.Contest: There is no serious contest for the incumbent party nomination.
    3.Incumbency: The incumbent party candidate is the sitting president.
    4.Third party: There is no significant third party or independent campaign.
    5.Short term economy: The economy is not in recession during the election campaign.
    6.Long term economy: Real per capita economic growth during the term equals or exceeds mean growth during the previous two terms.
    7.Policy change: The incumbent administration effects major changes in national policy.
    8.Social unrest: There is no sustained social unrest during the term.
    9.Scandal: The incumbent administration is untainted by major scandal.
    10.Foreign/military failure: The incumbent administration suffers no major failure in foreign or military affairs.
    11.Foreign/military success: The incumbent administration achieves a major success in foreign or military affairs.
    12.Incumbent charisma: The incumbent party candidate is charismatic or a national hero.
    13.Challenger charisma: The challenging party candidate is not charismatic or a national hero.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Keys_to_the_White_House#The_13_Keys_to_the_White_House

    So where does that leave Zuckerberg? He beats Trump on the important “If you are so smart why ain’t you rich?” question.

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    • Replies: @Dmitry
    Clever person - but lacking personal skills or charizma. In addition, he seems to lack any political philosophy or belief system (beyond apparent desire for surveilling people), let alone something which could have mass popularity.
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  30. peterAUS says:

    An idea.

    It appears that the usual “Team Russia”, still, isn’t on the roll here.
    They will, of course. Damage control.

    While we are waiting for them to swamp this thread, how about:
    This is, sort of, a post-action report. Usually, as a part of it, suggestions are made aabout how to do better next time.
    Say, we are top Kremlin advisers. People Putin and his team listen to. At least listen.
    So….what would we suggest them?

    I’ll go first.
    Operational goal: eradicate the Assad’s regime enemy in the area deemed good enough for the next stage of talks. In essence, for the splitting of the country.
    In simple terms: this is the new Assad Syria.
    Execution:
    Intent:commit to the above with the full resources of the Russian state. Full.
    Details: deploy maximum air assets in the region. Conduct around the clock bombing campaign. Send in the troops. An airborne division, at least. At least…..
    Start waging a complete, Iraqi style (West side) war in Syria.
    Go in witth full force, eradicate, secure. Give it to the ally.
    Get out.
    Timeframe: 3 months, tops.

    And I say, a full commitment. Everything/anything short of tactical nukes.
    Whatever it takes.

    I know it won’t happen.
    Something else will.
    The opposite, most likely.

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    • Replies: @Mikel
    So it looks like "Team Russia", as you call them, are not going to show up. It could have been interesting but it may may be better that way. I just saw at Martyanov's blog how he is taking the Russian MoD version of the Syrian AD systems performance at face value (possibly as silly as doing the same with the Pentagon's version) and convincing himself that this further reinforces his claims about the huge Russian technological advantage. Not a pretty sight.
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  31. g2k says:

    OT(ish) but is there now another Yerevanomaidan on the cards? They seem to be pissed off that Serzh is “doing a Putin” and becoming prime minister to dodge term limits. The leaders this time are much more atlanticist than the electricity ones.

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  32. @Philip Owen
    The Israeli media which is usually hard headed about security issues seems to believe the US story of no interceptions. That being the case, the bomb craters at the three sites are not so big. The Storm Shadows have on board cameras that operate when closing in on the target to enable shutdown if in error. So there should be no doubt about any Storm Shadow losses. They fly very low, below 100 ft according to brochureware. Nothing from the 1980's should be able to touch them. No airport was hit. Were any targetted? Whatever the kill rate, the tomahawks did get through last time. The Israelis think they were effective at destroying planes.

    Yesterday, various Russian parliamentarians were demanding that Syria, Iran and North Korea are immediately supplied with S300s. That doesn't suggest successful hit rates for existing equipment.

    I think that, equipment failures apart, they all got through. They hit buildings already inspected for chemical weapons and declared to be decommissioned. There was no office or lab debris at the Damascus site. They hit empty buildings. The Growler running the ECM had been taken out of retirement to control the attack. The only people who gave anything away were the British and French with the Storm Shadows. All other equipment involved was about obsolete. This can be considered a successful P3-Russo-Syrian joint operation.

    the pantsir point defence system is modern, and is part of the inner ring of the Russian air defence network. The Syrians have been supplied recent models. Russian electronic warfare and tracking data was probably also fed to Syrian systems, so the storm shadows may not have been invulnerable.

    Read More
    • Replies: @LondonBob
    The consensus is at least 50 percent intercepted with ECM playing a key role. Airfields don't seem to have been hit and that might have been due to the Pantsir. The US denying they targeted airfields is a dead giveaway, why so many at so few targets, unless they expected intercepts then.

    Impressive performance by Russian AD systems, will have a real impact going forward.
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  33. @Dmitry
    It hasn't been mentioned yet one of the main news stories of the week - Telegram is going to get banned. And Viber will probably be the choice for communication by government officials.

    It hasn’t been mentioned yet one of the main news stories of the week – Telegram is going to get banned. And Viber will probably be the choice for communication by government officials.

    This is disappointing. At a minimum, they should have gone for Messenger and WhatsApp too, and I still don’t understand why the Kremlin doesn’t take action against the likes of Facebook and Google. These are effectively hostile surveillance operations in Russia’s midst.

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  34. Dmitry says:
    @Anatoly Karlin
    Typical of the kremlins. Ban the Russian technology, adopt a foreign (Israeli) one.

    https://twitter.com/akarlin88/status/984724745177444352

    I guess it’s not surprising though, considering who owns the company, and his past history with the authorities.

    an the Russian technology, adopt a foreign (Israeli) one.

    The irony because all people I know in Israel, are using Telegram.

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  35. Dmitry says:
    @Philip Owen
    So where does that leave Zuckerberg? He beats Trump on the important "If you are so smart why ain't you rich?" question.

    Clever person – but lacking personal skills or charizma. In addition, he seems to lack any political philosophy or belief system (beyond apparent desire for surveilling people), let alone something which could have mass popularity.

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    • Replies: @ussr andy

    he seems to lack any political philosophy
     
    *cough* fwd.us
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  36. g2k says:

    Even the hardcore neocons aren’t advocating full-on regime change. Ben Judah has been advocating for sanctioning VTB and threatening to do the same to Sberbank, but wants UN peacekeepers in return for not. Given how bad things looked in 2013 (complete salafi takeover) that’s massive progress.

    There’s supposed to be new sanctions planned for Monday. Ben Aris seems to think that they’ll be aimed at defense and chemical weapons companies, so generally symbolic.

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  37. LondonBob says:
    @Lemurmaniac
    the pantsir point defence system is modern, and is part of the inner ring of the Russian air defence network. The Syrians have been supplied recent models. Russian electronic warfare and tracking data was probably also fed to Syrian systems, so the storm shadows may not have been invulnerable.

    The consensus is at least 50 percent intercepted with ECM playing a key role. Airfields don’t seem to have been hit and that might have been due to the Pantsir. The US denying they targeted airfields is a dead giveaway, why so many at so few targets, unless they expected intercepts then.

    Impressive performance by Russian AD systems, will have a real impact going forward.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Swedish Family

    The consensus is at least 50 percent intercepted with ECM playing a key role.
     
    Some insightful comments on this at Pat Lang's blog.

    http://turcopolier.typepad.com/sic_semper_tyrannis/2018/04/yet-another-mission-accomplished.html#disqus_thread
    , @Philip Owen
    And yet the US can't have been entirely dissatisified with Sharyat in 2017. The Israelis counted 57 hits out of 58 launches at that time. Have the Pantsirs improved so much?
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  38. ussr andy says:
    @Dmitry
    Clever person - but lacking personal skills or charizma. In addition, he seems to lack any political philosophy or belief system (beyond apparent desire for surveilling people), let alone something which could have mass popularity.

    he seems to lack any political philosophy

    *cough* fwd.us

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  39. Brabantian says: • Website

    A very different perspective – The BIG story here glossed over above, is that France admitted that the attack was co-ordinated in advance with Russia, during 2-3 days of ‘deconfliction discussion’ … In other words, the whole thing was semi-fake … Russia and US-Nato collaborating behind the scenes

    Putin was given the face-saving gifts of ‘allegedly no casualties’ – thanks to Moscow and Syria knowing the targets in advance – and the attack doing little but destroying mostly empty buildings … plus having the Pentagon, not contest too aggressively Russia’s claim of shooting down 70% of rockets … a semi-’victory’ for Putin

    Seems a major goal of the Deep State forcing Trump into this semi-fake ‘Syria attack’ is to discredit Trump amongst his base, and that programme is working like a charm, with Trump’s base not digesting how deeply Trump is a hostage to Deep State threats … Trump was easily induced to be ‘enthusiastic’ for the attack because it was set up with Vladimir ‘so no one gets killed here’

    Trump said he wanted to exit Syria, and shortly after that Trump Tower caught on fire, killing a Jewish neighbour Trump knew, and menacing Trump’s own apartments … and then the Deep State FBI seized the files and recordings in the office of Trump’s most personal lawyer, another Jewish guy, menacing to use all to destroy him

    It is just like Ronald Reagan getting that .22 wounding bullet in 1981, or the stitched-up ‘impeachment’ of Bill Clinton in the 1990s over a Jewish girl, to force Clinton to bomb Serbia and kill thousands

    We have Trump’s base now encouraged to abandon him, and major right-ist media figures such as Ann Coulter and Alex Jones encouraging Trump’s base to despise him, the highly dodgy Infowars Jones – down the street from CIA’s Stratfor – melting down in a staged four-letter-word ‘F-ck Trump’ rant … Trump’s agenda seen by the oligarch cabal as going down with Trump

    We also have the USA and Nato looking exactly like corrupt white-people-led governments who kill brown people on the flimsiest of pretexts, the absurdity of the accusations against Syria known to just about everyone except the media-brainwashed public in the Anglo countries and Europe … setting the stage nicely for an upcoming New World Order with Open Borders, as Pope Francis is eager to announce

    The Syria attack was really ‘Chabad fireworks’ organised mutually by the West with Russia … Maybe Trump and Putin even used their Israeli-Mossad Chabad cult mutual contacts to share the info … It is just like Antony Sutton exposed half a century ago when he showed the old US-Soviet ‘Cold War’ was fake, with the US transferring tech to Moscow during the 1950s-60s-70s, often thru Israel

    We have to consider the likelihood that AK & Saker are both wrong, and that there is no ‘real’ East-West rivalry, but a spooky half-conflict in which Russia and Putin are resentful of being given such slander-victim roles to play … but ultimately Russia pulls its punches and plays along … no truth on 9-11, no truth on the fake ‘moon landings’ of 50 years ago, playing along with the Edward Snowden fraud … and the most important cover-up of all, the fact that Hiroshima & Nagasaki were typical firebombing raids just like Tokyo, and that as nuclear engineer Anders Björkman showed long ago, ‘nuclear weapons’ have never existed

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  40. @LondonBob
    The consensus is at least 50 percent intercepted with ECM playing a key role. Airfields don't seem to have been hit and that might have been due to the Pantsir. The US denying they targeted airfields is a dead giveaway, why so many at so few targets, unless they expected intercepts then.

    Impressive performance by Russian AD systems, will have a real impact going forward.

    The consensus is at least 50 percent intercepted with ECM playing a key role.

    Some insightful comments on this at Pat Lang’s blog.

    http://turcopolier.typepad.com/sic_semper_tyrannis/2018/04/yet-another-mission-accomplished.html#disqus_thread

    Read More
    • Replies: @Lemurmaniac
    I'm banned from his blog for 'ultra-nationalism', but i noticed he predicted this 'looked like a war' and that Russia would hit back militarily. Wrong on both counts.
    , @Joe Stalin
    What kind of ECM would that be? Just looking at the wikipedia descriptions of the guidance systems we have (a) Terrain Contour Matching, (b) Digital Scene Matching Area Correlation, (c) inertial navigation systems (d) GPS. Jamming a GPS signal would still allow your cruise missile to still get to the target area, assuming the other systems were still being used and GPS was just being used for periodic updates for accuracy sakes. The UK Storm Shadow has a thermal camera for terminal guidance.
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  41. Mikel says:
    @Anatoly Karlin
    Yeah, as peterAUS said, I'm not sure to what extent this was a humiliation.

    Negative - FUKUS attacked sovereign country (which, incidentally, Russia does not have a strict formal obligation to defend).

    Positive - They took care to launch from out of range of Russian AD; attacked targets that had been cleared out in advance; it seems that Syrian AD had a 70% interception rate (which is highly impressive, for upgraded 1980s Soviet hardware manned by Syrians); China strongly supported Russia's position.
    And of course catastrophic scenarios, e.g. actual Russian defeat/humiliation, as would happen in an all-out confrontation, did not come to pass.

    Yeah, as peterAUS said, I’m not sure to what extent this was a humiliation.

    If most everybody in the world (including a good chunk of you own people) think that you have been humiliated, then you have been humiliated, by definition. This is not a technical/quantitative term, it’s a subjective/psychological one.

    With that said, you know much better than me how representative of the Russian public mood commenters at colonelcassad are. I haven’t checked anywhere else. And we’ll never know for sure how many interceptions there were but the Pentagon announced a strike on Syria, the targets they talked about were indeed hit by at least some missiles, the Russian didn’t do anything visible about it and I think that’s all there is to it, re humiliation perceptions.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Anon
    World opinion matters slightly more than zero, elite and near-elite opinion matters a lot. "Russia stronk" types never lived in the real world to begin with, and I strongly suspect that any feelings of disappointment they have will be overcome in a few weeks anyway.
    , @peterAUS
    If I may.

    "Citizen" analogy.
    Two friends going for a drink. A professional and his friend.
    A couple of thugs start mouthing of to a friend. He wants to leave the place. The pro assures him, should any of those punks try anything he'll floor them. The friend doesn't show fear, the food for the punks. Hungry for that and frustrated they pounce on the friend.
    The pro simply steps back, keeping distance. The friend gets kicked, on the ground, a couple of times. Punks, fed, laugh and leave.
    The pro explains he could have ruined his career, livehood, by flooring them.
    The friend simply replies: "You shouldn't have promised"

    The problem here is not the Russian inaction. That was a wise, prudent move. Actually, the only rational move of all the players there.
    That's not the point.

    They were promising, saying something quite different from what they have done.
    Promise-delivery. The most fundamental elements of human interaction.

    I don't think "humiliation" is the proper word. Semantics.
    "Dissapointment"feels more fitting here.

    And, in real world, "credibility" is all what matters.

    So, the regime in Kremlin "dissapointed" and lost a bit/some/a lot/all of their credibility.

    One more thing, probably the most important, really.
    RESPECT.

    In the world of violence the most important element. From individual to the state alliances.
    Losing respect is a dangerous thing.
    Very dangerous.

    , @Jon0815

    If most everybody in the world (including a good chunk of you own people) think that you have been humiliated, then you have been humiliated, by definition.
     
    What is the evidence that most everybody in the world, or even a majority of the world, has such an opinion?

    Was the USSR humiliated by not intervening to prevent the vastly more deadly and destructive US attacks on its ally North Vietnam?

    And even for sake of argument, granting that this was a humiliation- which is the bigger humiliation? The failure of Russia to protect Syria from a strike that killed nobody and destroyed only empty buildings? Or the USA being unable to prevent Russia from thwarting its goal of removing Assad?

    On balance, Russia's highly successful intervention in Syria has clearly enhanced global perceptions of its strength.

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  42. @Swedish Family

    The consensus is at least 50 percent intercepted with ECM playing a key role.
     
    Some insightful comments on this at Pat Lang's blog.

    http://turcopolier.typepad.com/sic_semper_tyrannis/2018/04/yet-another-mission-accomplished.html#disqus_thread

    I’m banned from his blog for ‘ultra-nationalism’, but i noticed he predicted this ‘looked like a war’ and that Russia would hit back militarily. Wrong on both counts.

    Read More
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  43. Philip Owen says: • Website
    @LondonBob
    The consensus is at least 50 percent intercepted with ECM playing a key role. Airfields don't seem to have been hit and that might have been due to the Pantsir. The US denying they targeted airfields is a dead giveaway, why so many at so few targets, unless they expected intercepts then.

    Impressive performance by Russian AD systems, will have a real impact going forward.

    And yet the US can’t have been entirely dissatisified with Sharyat in 2017. The Israelis counted 57 hits out of 58 launches at that time. Have the Pantsirs improved so much?

    Read More
    • Replies: @Lemurmaniac
    Why are you so enamored with Israel? The use US equipment, and are thus incentervized to hype its effectiveness in order to contribute to their own carefully cultivated image of invincibility.

    An appeal to Israel is an appeal to authority of the worst kind.
    , @LondonBob
    I don't think it was as many as 58, I think the craters numbered in the 40s so they claimed double hits, which is doubtful there were that many. Since then the Rus have massively improved Syrian air defences.
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  44. Anon[291] • Disclaimer says:
    @Mikel

    Yeah, as peterAUS said, I’m not sure to what extent this was a humiliation.

     

    If most everybody in the world (including a good chunk of you own people) think that you have been humiliated, then you have been humiliated, by definition. This is not a technical/quantitative term, it's a subjective/psychological one.

    With that said, you know much better than me how representative of the Russian public mood commenters at colonelcassad are. I haven't checked anywhere else. And we'll never know for sure how many interceptions there were but the Pentagon announced a strike on Syria, the targets they talked about were indeed hit by at least some missiles, the Russian didn't do anything visible about it and I think that's all there is to it, re humiliation perceptions.

    World opinion matters slightly more than zero, elite and near-elite opinion matters a lot. “Russia stronk” types never lived in the real world to begin with, and I strongly suspect that any feelings of disappointment they have will be overcome in a few weeks anyway.

    Read More
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  45. peterAUS says:
    @Mikel

    Yeah, as peterAUS said, I’m not sure to what extent this was a humiliation.

     

    If most everybody in the world (including a good chunk of you own people) think that you have been humiliated, then you have been humiliated, by definition. This is not a technical/quantitative term, it's a subjective/psychological one.

    With that said, you know much better than me how representative of the Russian public mood commenters at colonelcassad are. I haven't checked anywhere else. And we'll never know for sure how many interceptions there were but the Pentagon announced a strike on Syria, the targets they talked about were indeed hit by at least some missiles, the Russian didn't do anything visible about it and I think that's all there is to it, re humiliation perceptions.

    If I may.

    “Citizen” analogy.
    Two friends going for a drink. A professional and his friend.
    A couple of thugs start mouthing of to a friend. He wants to leave the place. The pro assures him, should any of those punks try anything he’ll floor them. The friend doesn’t show fear, the food for the punks. Hungry for that and frustrated they pounce on the friend.
    The pro simply steps back, keeping distance. The friend gets kicked, on the ground, a couple of times. Punks, fed, laugh and leave.
    The pro explains he could have ruined his career, livehood, by flooring them.
    The friend simply replies: “You shouldn’t have promised

    The problem here is not the Russian inaction. That was a wise, prudent move. Actually, the only rational move of all the players there.
    That’s not the point.

    They were promising, saying something quite different from what they have done.
    Promise-delivery. The most fundamental elements of human interaction.

    I don’t think “humiliation” is the proper word. Semantics.
    “Dissapointment”feels more fitting here.

    And, in real world, “credibility” is all what matters.

    So, the regime in Kremlin “dissapointed” and lost a bit/some/a lot/all of their credibility.

    One more thing, probably the most important, really.
    RESPECT.

    In the world of violence the most important element. From individual to the state alliances.
    Losing respect is a dangerous thing.
    Very dangerous.

    Read More
    • Replies: @utu
    Your examples make people uncomfortable so they rather talk about housing prices. But you are right. It is about respect and Russia was humiliated just like it was humiliated one year ago. At that time I predicted that Putin would be out by the end of summer which did not happened. Apparently I have a different tolerance for humiliation that Russians.
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  46. @German_reader

    /pol/ no longer cares for him.
     
    I have my doubts though whether internet phenomena like /pol/ or the alt-right in general were ever really important for Trump's victory.
    I get the impression that a non-trivial part of Trump voters are people who have zero problem with an interventionist foreign policy. They may want to keep Mexicans out, but apart from that aren't really distinguishable from the kind of people who were fans of Bush II (e.g. fanatically pro-Israel with US and Israeli interests being seen as identical, permanent US global hegemony seen as a natural state of affairs, strong hostility to Russia, Iran, China). You see such people even on an "alternative" site like Unz review (in Sailer's Syria thread one particularly moronic commenter applauded Lindsey Graham for suggesting Assad should be "taken out"). So I wonder how much Trump has really been hurt by his Syria policy.
    In any case, the fact that Trump actually seems to have favored a more extreme course of action and was only reined in by his military advisers like Mattis is pretty disturbing.

    Candidate Trump’s denunciation of the Iraq, Libya and Syria wars differentiated him from Ted Cruz, who was just as much of an immigration restrictionist as Trump was.

    Compared to the gold standard, Pat Buchanan, here is how the 2016 Republican presidential candidates ranked:

    Trump – good on immigration, semi-good on foreign policy

    Cruz, Santorum – good on immigration, bad on foreign policy

    Paul – bad on immigration, good on foreign policy

    Establishment candidates – bad on both immigration and foreign policy

    The American far right, which is a much larger group of people than the Richard Spencer Alt-Right, delivered the two greatest electoral upsets in American history when we elected Dave Brat in 2014 and Donald Trump in 2016.

    Avoiding war in Syria was the second most important motivation of the American far right in these campaigns. Only immigration restriction was a more important to the supporters of Brat and Trump.

    For instance, the film director who initiated the Brat campaign (I forget his name, the producer of the Civil War trilogy: Gettysburg, Gods and Generals, and Copperhead) admitted in a NPR interview that Eric Cantor’s support for a regime change war in Syria was his primary motivation for pushing Brat to run for congress. All of the prominent right wing politicians and media figures who supported Brat against Cantor have been consistently opposed to regime change war in Syria, and the same is true of the prominent early supporters of Trump’s campaign who endorsed him before his big win in Indiana.

    The congressmen who consistently vote against war are all from the most right wing districts (which is to say, the most Protestant old-stock White districts) in America – for instance, John Duncan, Walter Jones, Dana Rohrabacher, Justin Amash, Thomas Massie and Rand Paul.

    The Washington blob simply ignores the mandate of these historic electoral upsets. Policy is proceeding as if Eric Cantor were Speaker of the House and Hillary Clinton were President.

    Is it possible that you, with your German education, find it psychologically impossible to place the blame where we all know it really belongs? Do you simply feel more comfortable blaming those damn American rednecks, because you know that doing so won’t get you arrested for hate crimes?

    Read More
    • Replies: @peterAUS

    Do you simply feel more comfortable blaming those damn American rednecks, because you know that doing so won’t get you arrested for hate crimes?
     
    A flip side to that coin:
    Do you simply feel that the act of voting was not a good enough effort from you guys?

    Yes, you did great there. A miracle.

    And then you simply walked home and kept doing your usual stuff.
    Not..........good.........enough, obviously, in the current paradigm.

    Naivety, incompetence, ignorance, laziness, I don't know, but the fundamental mistake has been made.

    You, for a brief moment, got control and then you lost it.

    In the real world that's a deadly mistake.
    At the moment the death and destruction are, still, dished on other peoples of this world, not on you.
    It will, I think, sooner or later, by your own elites. They not only despise but hate you.
    A very bad combination.

    , @German_reader

    Is it possible that you, with your German education, find it psychologically impossible to place the blame where we all know it really belongs? Do you simply feel more comfortable blaming those damn American rednecks, because you know that doing so won’t get you arrested for hate crimes?
     
    Well, obviously there is a very serious problem with Zionist lobbyists in the US. And partly that's certainly due to financial aspects...someone like Sheldon Adelson is apparently able to buy private audiences with Trump through his donations.
    But I doubt those lobbyists could wield the influence they do if there weren't lots of redneck types who are stupid enough to support such policies, either because of their misguided religious beliefs or out of general bellicosity and jingoism.
    I don't have survey data at hand (maybe Ak does), but whenever I go looking for Trump supporters on Twitter, I see tons of MAGA people who are fully in support of Trump's Mideast policies...or in fact would like them to be more aggressive. These people can't all be bots.
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  47. Mitleser says:
    @Sean
    Being linked to Iran is the route to WW3 for Russia. The US may not care very much about Syria but it will wage war on Iran, and they'll not wait for Trump's second term to start it. The time has come for Russia to divest itself of any association with Iran.

    https://www.traditionalright.com/the-view-from-olympus-the-worst-possible-choice/

    From his past statements it appears Mr. Bolton most of all wants wars with ... Iran. [.] But since its founding Likud’s objective has been an Israel stretching from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean. ,,, But a one-state solution means an Israel with an Arab and a Moslem majority, which Likud also finds unacceptable. So Likud needs to ethnically cleanse Palestine of Arabs. And to do that, it needs a big war in the region.... The assignment of American neo-cons is now to start a war with Iran, as their previous assignment was to start the war with Iraq. And one of their number is now President Trump’s National Security Advisor.
     

    If Iran falls, Russia will be next.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Sean
    Taking out Iran would give Israel confidence. It would only remain to destablise Jordan and send back to their homelan in the already existing state of Jordan, the West Bank Arabs (who travel abroad on Jordanian passports)

    http://www.martin-van-creveld.com/turmoil-in-the-holy-land/

    What should be done: Speaking as an Israeli now, given that real peace is out of reach for a long, long time to come, there seem to be two courses. The first would be for my country to complete the wall it has built around the West Bank in such a way as to get rid as of many Palestinians, specifically including most of those who live in East Jerusalem, as possible. That done, it should tell the settlers it is withdrawing and take as many of them as possible along. If, after that, the Palestinians in the West Bank still cause trouble, then Israel should deal with them as it dealt with Gaza in 2014. This has long been my own position; however, unless pressure is applied form outside it is very unlikely to happen.

    The second would be to hope for the collapse of the Hashemite Kingdom and its occupation by Daesh or some similar organization. That would create an opportunity to repeat the events of 1948 and throw the Palestinians of the West Bank across the River Jordan. .
     

    Then the West will be free to clear its own house. I don't think it would be necessary to fight Russia.
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  48. peterAUS says:
    @John Gruskos
    Candidate Trump's denunciation of the Iraq, Libya and Syria wars differentiated him from Ted Cruz, who was just as much of an immigration restrictionist as Trump was.

    Compared to the gold standard, Pat Buchanan, here is how the 2016 Republican presidential candidates ranked:

    Trump - good on immigration, semi-good on foreign policy

    Cruz, Santorum - good on immigration, bad on foreign policy

    Paul - bad on immigration, good on foreign policy

    Establishment candidates - bad on both immigration and foreign policy

    The American far right, which is a much larger group of people than the Richard Spencer Alt-Right, delivered the two greatest electoral upsets in American history when we elected Dave Brat in 2014 and Donald Trump in 2016.

    Avoiding war in Syria was the second most important motivation of the American far right in these campaigns. Only immigration restriction was a more important to the supporters of Brat and Trump.

    For instance, the film director who initiated the Brat campaign (I forget his name, the producer of the Civil War trilogy: Gettysburg, Gods and Generals, and Copperhead) admitted in a NPR interview that Eric Cantor's support for a regime change war in Syria was his primary motivation for pushing Brat to run for congress. All of the prominent right wing politicians and media figures who supported Brat against Cantor have been consistently opposed to regime change war in Syria, and the same is true of the prominent early supporters of Trump's campaign who endorsed him before his big win in Indiana.

    The congressmen who consistently vote against war are all from the most right wing districts (which is to say, the most Protestant old-stock White districts) in America - for instance, John Duncan, Walter Jones, Dana Rohrabacher, Justin Amash, Thomas Massie and Rand Paul.

    The Washington blob simply ignores the mandate of these historic electoral upsets. Policy is proceeding as if Eric Cantor were Speaker of the House and Hillary Clinton were President.

    Is it possible that you, with your German education, find it psychologically impossible to place the blame where we all know it really belongs? Do you simply feel more comfortable blaming those damn American rednecks, because you know that doing so won't get you arrested for hate crimes?

    Do you simply feel more comfortable blaming those damn American rednecks, because you know that doing so won’t get you arrested for hate crimes?

    A flip side to that coin:
    Do you simply feel that the act of voting was not a good enough effort from you guys?

    Yes, you did great there. A miracle.

    And then you simply walked home and kept doing your usual stuff.
    Not……….good………enough, obviously, in the current paradigm.

    Naivety, incompetence, ignorance, laziness, I don’t know, but the fundamental mistake has been made.

    You, for a brief moment, got control and then you lost it.

    In the real world that’s a deadly mistake.
    At the moment the death and destruction are, still, dished on other peoples of this world, not on you.
    It will, I think, sooner or later, by your own elites. They not only despise but hate you.
    A very bad combination.

    Read More
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  49. @Polish Perspective
    The single best outcome of the Trump presidency collapse has probably been complete discrediting of the "reform from within" theory. Trump was the royal flush of that theory. Here's a maverick billionaire who's willing to go much further than any other candidate and who never simply flinched despite massive negative media coverage.

    The fantasy/delusion that such a person would then, suddenly in the WH, turn even more radical and suddenly sponsor right-wing deportation squads and implement blatantly pro-white policies (starting with immigration) has been exposed as the obvious hoax it always was.

    The US by the 2020s will reach a demographic tipping point that California reached in the early 2000s. The last GOP leader of California was Pete Wilson, who compared to Trump was far bolder and actually had real principles. But it was too late. Trump will likely be the last GOP president for a very, very long time. He already lost the popular vote by a non-trivial margin and hung on by the skin of his teeth. Every year, that performance will be harder. By the mid-2020s, it won't matter who is president. It will be a one-party state.

    What happens then will be very interesting. Even if "only" 20% of whites radicalise, that is still tens of millions. Furthermore, given the centrality of the US to the political and cultural heart of the rest of the white world, it will have repercussions to us, too.


    China has been uncharacteristically blunt in its support of Syria and Russia
     
    They've been quite staunch for some time now, but words are in the end, just words. Will China risk more than that? I doubt it, and why would they? Syria is just a lot of rocks and sand. Xi Jinping has been threatening Taiwan more than usual lately and they carried out a huge naval exercise in the SCS in the last few weeks.

    The Chinese are smart, not allowing themselves to be dragged in and take the opportunity when the West and Russia are focused on worthless sandlands to push aggressive maneuvers. They won't have to do much at this point, just avoid trouble and let the West fall in of itself, as this Syria conflict is obviously pushed by the Israel lobby in the US. There is no rational reason why we would support the removal of Assad if it wasn't for the fact that he is allied with Iran. China wisely stays out of such troubles, and it wisely restricts immigration so that middle eastern tribes cannot gain a foothold within its institutions.

    After all, Chinese history is replete with small foreign tribes nestling their ways into the halls of power. The Manchu were simply the latest ones. Everyone should read about Chinese history from the end of the Qing dynasty to the establishment of the PRC. It has real and valuable lessons for those of us who are now in a similar position that the Chinese themselves were in about 120 years ago.

    Candidate Trump promised an administration similar to Eisenhower’s:

    Low levels of legal immigration (like the McCarren Act), deportation of all illegal immigrants (like Operation Wetback), avoid counter-productive unnecessary wars (Eisenhower ended the Korean War, kept us out of Vietnam, defied the Israel lobby during the Suez Crisis, and moved towards detente with the Soviet Union after the 1957 purge of the “anti-Part group” Kaganovich etc.), balanced trade, relatively progressive taxation and relatively high financial regulation, balanced budgets, and infrastructure spending (interstate highway system).

    Expecting Trump to keep his promises and govern as a moderate nationalist like Eisenhower was not an unrealistic expectation.

    The real lesson is, never trust a man with a son-in-law like Jared Kushner.

    But some other candidate with good character and less New York entanglements, someone who isn’t “the most pro-Israel guy”, could conceivably beat Trump in the 2020 primaries, win the presidency, and implement Trump’s 2020 platform.

    Read More
    • Replies: @songbird
    Bush 43 supposedly campaigned on non-intervention. Obama definitely campaigned on an end to government spying. Same is true of many other leaders in other countries.

    I can't decide if Eisenhower was underrated or if the people and system were different back then. Maybe, Vietnam was much more destructive than anyone guessed, growing the deep state in a way previous wars - with wartime economies - didn't.

    I don't think Ike was a great extemporaneous speaker, but he did have a lot of experience.
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  50. @John Gruskos
    Candidate Trump's denunciation of the Iraq, Libya and Syria wars differentiated him from Ted Cruz, who was just as much of an immigration restrictionist as Trump was.

    Compared to the gold standard, Pat Buchanan, here is how the 2016 Republican presidential candidates ranked:

    Trump - good on immigration, semi-good on foreign policy

    Cruz, Santorum - good on immigration, bad on foreign policy

    Paul - bad on immigration, good on foreign policy

    Establishment candidates - bad on both immigration and foreign policy

    The American far right, which is a much larger group of people than the Richard Spencer Alt-Right, delivered the two greatest electoral upsets in American history when we elected Dave Brat in 2014 and Donald Trump in 2016.

    Avoiding war in Syria was the second most important motivation of the American far right in these campaigns. Only immigration restriction was a more important to the supporters of Brat and Trump.

    For instance, the film director who initiated the Brat campaign (I forget his name, the producer of the Civil War trilogy: Gettysburg, Gods and Generals, and Copperhead) admitted in a NPR interview that Eric Cantor's support for a regime change war in Syria was his primary motivation for pushing Brat to run for congress. All of the prominent right wing politicians and media figures who supported Brat against Cantor have been consistently opposed to regime change war in Syria, and the same is true of the prominent early supporters of Trump's campaign who endorsed him before his big win in Indiana.

    The congressmen who consistently vote against war are all from the most right wing districts (which is to say, the most Protestant old-stock White districts) in America - for instance, John Duncan, Walter Jones, Dana Rohrabacher, Justin Amash, Thomas Massie and Rand Paul.

    The Washington blob simply ignores the mandate of these historic electoral upsets. Policy is proceeding as if Eric Cantor were Speaker of the House and Hillary Clinton were President.

    Is it possible that you, with your German education, find it psychologically impossible to place the blame where we all know it really belongs? Do you simply feel more comfortable blaming those damn American rednecks, because you know that doing so won't get you arrested for hate crimes?

    Is it possible that you, with your German education, find it psychologically impossible to place the blame where we all know it really belongs? Do you simply feel more comfortable blaming those damn American rednecks, because you know that doing so won’t get you arrested for hate crimes?

    Well, obviously there is a very serious problem with Zionist lobbyists in the US. And partly that’s certainly due to financial aspects…someone like Sheldon Adelson is apparently able to buy private audiences with Trump through his donations.
    But I doubt those lobbyists could wield the influence they do if there weren’t lots of redneck types who are stupid enough to support such policies, either because of their misguided religious beliefs or out of general bellicosity and jingoism.
    I don’t have survey data at hand (maybe Ak does), but whenever I go looking for Trump supporters on Twitter, I see tons of MAGA people who are fully in support of Trump’s Mideast policies…or in fact would like them to be more aggressive. These people can’t all be bots.

    Read More
    • Replies: @John Gruskos
    Look at the comments section at Breitbart. Readers are mostly opposed to the strike on Syria.

    Also, consider the fact that Tucker Carlson, the most emphatically anti-war pundit on Fox News, also has the best rated show on Fox News.

    The bulk of the American right, the people who read Breitbart and listen to Rush Limbaugh and watch Fox News, are increasingly migrating to a Buchananite, not neocon, foreign policy outlook.
    , @dfordoom

    But I doubt those lobbyists could wield the influence they do if there weren’t lots of redneck types who are stupid enough to support such policies, either because of their misguided religious beliefs or out of general bellicosity and jingoism.
     
    Yep. Americans love war more than they ever loved baseball. Right-wing God-fearing gun-loving ordinary Americans just love war, especially against people without the capacity to fight back. It's no fun fighting people who fight back.

    It tends to suggest some massive feelings of inadequacy in the American psyche.

    The really depressing thing is that Trump's popularity is likely to increase now that he's revealed himself as just another stock-standard Israel-first warmonger Republican.
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  51. @Philip Owen
    And yet the US can't have been entirely dissatisified with Sharyat in 2017. The Israelis counted 57 hits out of 58 launches at that time. Have the Pantsirs improved so much?

    Why are you so enamored with Israel? The use US equipment, and are thus incentervized to hype its effectiveness in order to contribute to their own carefully cultivated image of invincibility.

    An appeal to Israel is an appeal to authority of the worst kind.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Philip Owen
    They also have a lot of skin in the game and thus a greater need to show realism which is why I appeal to them as an authority.
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  52. @Swedish Family

    The consensus is at least 50 percent intercepted with ECM playing a key role.
     
    Some insightful comments on this at Pat Lang's blog.

    http://turcopolier.typepad.com/sic_semper_tyrannis/2018/04/yet-another-mission-accomplished.html#disqus_thread

    What kind of ECM would that be? Just looking at the wikipedia descriptions of the guidance systems we have (a) Terrain Contour Matching, (b) Digital Scene Matching Area Correlation, (c) inertial navigation systems (d) GPS. Jamming a GPS signal would still allow your cruise missile to still get to the target area, assuming the other systems were still being used and GPS was just being used for periodic updates for accuracy sakes. The UK Storm Shadow has a thermal camera for terminal guidance.

    Read More
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  53. @German_reader

    Is it possible that you, with your German education, find it psychologically impossible to place the blame where we all know it really belongs? Do you simply feel more comfortable blaming those damn American rednecks, because you know that doing so won’t get you arrested for hate crimes?
     
    Well, obviously there is a very serious problem with Zionist lobbyists in the US. And partly that's certainly due to financial aspects...someone like Sheldon Adelson is apparently able to buy private audiences with Trump through his donations.
    But I doubt those lobbyists could wield the influence they do if there weren't lots of redneck types who are stupid enough to support such policies, either because of their misguided religious beliefs or out of general bellicosity and jingoism.
    I don't have survey data at hand (maybe Ak does), but whenever I go looking for Trump supporters on Twitter, I see tons of MAGA people who are fully in support of Trump's Mideast policies...or in fact would like them to be more aggressive. These people can't all be bots.

    Look at the comments section at Breitbart. Readers are mostly opposed to the strike on Syria.

    Also, consider the fact that Tucker Carlson, the most emphatically anti-war pundit on Fox News, also has the best rated show on Fox News.

    The bulk of the American right, the people who read Breitbart and listen to Rush Limbaugh and watch Fox News, are increasingly migrating to a Buchananite, not neocon, foreign policy outlook.

    Read More
    • Replies: @German_reader

    The bulk of the American right, the people who read Breitbart and listen to Rush Limbaugh and watch Fox News, are increasingly migrating to a Buchananite, not neocon, foreign policy outlook.
     
    I really hope you're right. Still leaves the question though how to deal with the fallout from Trump's disappointing presidency and what to do in 2020.
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  54. Ron Unz says:

    Ceasing to recognize US copyrights. (“”This will be like a punch to the solar plexus for the Americans, because all achievements and all domination of the Anglo-Saxon, Western world are based on intellectual property and we are targeting this very right,” MP Mikhail Yemelyanov (Fair Russia) said in comments to Interfax.”)

    While the first two are not unexpected, the third one seems radical and far-reaching.

    Pretty funny. That was exactly my own suggestion from a few days ago when you had a thread about how Russia could “hit back,” but I never got around to leaving a comment.

    For at least a decade or two, I’ve been telling people that one of the greatest underutilized advantages of possessing a nuclear weapons arsenal is the ability to ignore international copyright law. And I’m now glad to see that the Russians have recognized the same thing.

    Why couldn’t they just threaten to put up a streaming-video website including pirated copies of every television show, American movie, and Netflix series? Wouldn’t that potentially cost Hollywood many, many tens of billions of dollars each year? And if they put a smallish quantity well-designed political propaganda and “conspiracy theory” ideas in the sidebar, wouldn’t that allow an end-run around the Controlled Media?

    Presumably, Western governments would try to put up a Great Firewall like China’s, but assuming the video quality were good and the price were free, I’d think enormous numbers of ordinary Americans would try to save $50-100 per month in charges by using a VPN or something like that to watch Game of Thrones or Iron Man XII. After, all that’s a vastly greater incentive that anything ordinary Chinese currently have.

    I’m absolutely no expert on these international Internet connectivity issues, but if I were Hollywood and the MSM, I’d be more than a little nervous.

    Read More
    • Agree: Anatoly Karlin
    • Replies: @Dmitry

    Why couldn’t they just threaten to put up a streaming-video website including pirated copies of every television show, American movie, and Netflix series? Wouldn’t that potentially cost Hollywood many, many tens of billions of dollars each year?
     
    This already exists though- websites freely streaming every single television show, American movie, and every latest netflix series (even in English).

    Most people watch things on free sites nowadays, and never pay to watch television shows or movies (unless they want to sit in cinema).

    I wonder who pays for things like netflix, when it's all available for free and with the same quality and streaming speeds on other sites.

    , @Anonymous
    Why screw around with copyrights which could definitely hurt America, but not do so much harm.

    Russia could come out with a fully convertible currency backed by gold.

    This would be the nuclear option if the West pushed too far.
    , @The Big Red Scary

    Why couldn’t they just threaten to put up a streaming-video website including pirated copies of every television show, American movie, and Netflix series?
     
    Wouldn’t this run afoul of chemical weapons treaties, specifically with respect to the use of nerve agents?
    , @Randal

    For at least a decade or two, I’ve been telling people that one of the greatest underutilized advantages of possessing a nuclear weapons arsenal is the ability to ignore international copyright law. And I’m now glad to see that the Russians have recognized the same thing.
     
    Indeed, because only a genuinely sovereign state that can defend itself from bullying by the world hegemon can so openly defy it, and possession of nuclear weapons (in fact possession of a secure second strike capability) is the only guarantor of such real sovereignty in a nuclear armed world.

    But openly defying international copyright law is likely to be seen as exercising the "nuclear option" in the economic sphere, I suspect. A lot of very powerful people are going to lose a lot of money (but probably not enough to make them no longer very powerful). Might be a bit like creating another few hundred Bill Browder types, only richer. If Russia does it, it can expect serious pushback.

    Plus, like effectively supporting parties of the nationalist right and race realists in the west, while it might be effective it would also require some contradiction of the Russian government's own self-image to do so, I think.

    Presumably, Western governments would try to put up a Great Firewall like China’s, but assuming the video quality were good and the price were free, I’d think enormous numbers of ordinary Americans would try to save $50-100 per month in charges by using a VPN or something like that to watch Game of Thrones or Iron Man XII. After, all that’s a vastly greater incentive that anything ordinary Chinese currently have.
     
    Presumably such services are available now (I hear about them, but I don't know because I don't use them)? Isn't a lot of the reason most people pay up just that it's easier to pay than risk the downsides - illegality and the fear of getting caught, risks of computer corruption (both of which loom much larger for the technically unadept majority). How much different would Russian websites legal in Russia but illegal to visit (and probably viciously punished, with absurdly draconian exemplary fines and lengthy imprisonments) in the US sphere actually make?

    I would like to see it happen (because I think the world benefits from greater resistance to US power, and I'm not a big fan of over-enforcement of intellectual "property" laws generally, especially in the area of entertainment), but I'd bet against it happening. I still don't see the Putin government having reached that bridge-burning stage, although they certainly seem to have taken this latest US outrage pretty seriously.

    Logically the response to this Syria incident should surely be beefing up support for Syria (especially Syrian air defences - moving towards a meaningful ability to exclude Israeli and US air power) and cooperation with Iran, surely? That is the response that would most make those responsible for the attacks grind their teeth in frustration, it seems to me.
    , @Philip Owen
    I am expecting drug patents to be infringed. Putin has been concerned personally that high value drugs are all imported. At one point 90% by value of Russian drugs were imports. It's still not far off despite most generics now being made in Russia by Indian firms.
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  55. @John Gruskos
    Look at the comments section at Breitbart. Readers are mostly opposed to the strike on Syria.

    Also, consider the fact that Tucker Carlson, the most emphatically anti-war pundit on Fox News, also has the best rated show on Fox News.

    The bulk of the American right, the people who read Breitbart and listen to Rush Limbaugh and watch Fox News, are increasingly migrating to a Buchananite, not neocon, foreign policy outlook.

    The bulk of the American right, the people who read Breitbart and listen to Rush Limbaugh and watch Fox News, are increasingly migrating to a Buchananite, not neocon, foreign policy outlook.

    I really hope you’re right. Still leaves the question though how to deal with the fallout from Trump’s disappointing presidency and what to do in 2020.

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  56. dfordoom says: • Website
    @Sam

    The single best outcome of the Trump presidency collapse has probably been complete discrediting of the “reform from within” theory. Trump was the royal flush of that theory. Here’s a maverick billionaire who’s willing to go much further than any other candidate and who never simply flinched despite massive negative media coverage.

    The fantasy/delusion that such a person would then, suddenly in the WH, turn even more radical and suddenly sponsor right-wing deportation squads and implement blatantly pro-white policies (starting with immigration) has been exposed as the obvious hoax it always was.
     
    To a degree but the worst flaws of Trump were that ultimately he is obsessed with being liked by the smart set, he has no intellect and he is a complete novice politically. Trump is good on his instincts but he is incredibly lazy intellectually. So it is hardly a surprise that the common refrain about him is that he takes the position of the last person he talked with. Even with all these flaws it could all have been mitigated if the personel had merely been in line with campaign. But very few were and on top of that there isn't much institutional infrastructure in Washington that fits an national conservative mould to help staffing or to bark at him when he strays.

    The US by the 2020s will reach a demographic tipping point that California reached in the early 2000s. The last GOP leader of California was Pete Wilson, who compared to Trump was far bolder and actually had real principles. But it was too late. Trump will likely be the last GOP president for a very, very long time. He already lost the popular vote by a non-trivial margin and hung on by the skin of his teeth. Every year, that performance will be harder. By the mid-2020s, it won’t matter who is president. It will be a one-party state.
     
    I doubt that. The GOP will simply adjust to the new demographics by ditching some of their current shibboleths. Remember that as whites become a minority they tend to vote as minorities. As was noted in the last election, the white working class voted more as a racial block. But from what I recall Trump only used half of the Sailer Strategy. The strategy was to get a better geographic composition of the white vote as well as raising it. But Trump actually got less white votes(57%) than Romney(59%).
    So Trump is and was always likely to be a transitionary figure. The precedent of implicit white voting blocks and issues are now on the tip of becoming explicit. A less toxic candidate now has potential to pick up the pieces.Additionally, the mainstream media gets weaker by every election cycle. Lastly, there are always new issues that show up that change voting coalitions. For example, as affirmative action's effects becomes more pervasive on the consciousness of whites and asians it will create new wedges in the culture war.

    As was noted in the last election, the white working class voted more as a racial block.

    Did they? Or did they simply vote for their class interests?

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  57. dfordoom says: • Website
    @German_reader

    Is it possible that you, with your German education, find it psychologically impossible to place the blame where we all know it really belongs? Do you simply feel more comfortable blaming those damn American rednecks, because you know that doing so won’t get you arrested for hate crimes?
     
    Well, obviously there is a very serious problem with Zionist lobbyists in the US. And partly that's certainly due to financial aspects...someone like Sheldon Adelson is apparently able to buy private audiences with Trump through his donations.
    But I doubt those lobbyists could wield the influence they do if there weren't lots of redneck types who are stupid enough to support such policies, either because of their misguided religious beliefs or out of general bellicosity and jingoism.
    I don't have survey data at hand (maybe Ak does), but whenever I go looking for Trump supporters on Twitter, I see tons of MAGA people who are fully in support of Trump's Mideast policies...or in fact would like them to be more aggressive. These people can't all be bots.

    But I doubt those lobbyists could wield the influence they do if there weren’t lots of redneck types who are stupid enough to support such policies, either because of their misguided religious beliefs or out of general bellicosity and jingoism.

    Yep. Americans love war more than they ever loved baseball. Right-wing God-fearing gun-loving ordinary Americans just love war, especially against people without the capacity to fight back. It’s no fun fighting people who fight back.

    It tends to suggest some massive feelings of inadequacy in the American psyche.

    The really depressing thing is that Trump’s popularity is likely to increase now that he’s revealed himself as just another stock-standard Israel-first warmonger Republican.

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  58. Dmitry says:
    @Ron Unz

    Ceasing to recognize US copyrights. (“”This will be like a punch to the solar plexus for the Americans, because all achievements and all domination of the Anglo-Saxon, Western world are based on intellectual property and we are targeting this very right,” MP Mikhail Yemelyanov (Fair Russia) said in comments to Interfax.”)

    While the first two are not unexpected, the third one seems radical and far-reaching.
     
    Pretty funny. That was exactly my own suggestion from a few days ago when you had a thread about how Russia could "hit back," but I never got around to leaving a comment.

    For at least a decade or two, I've been telling people that one of the greatest underutilized advantages of possessing a nuclear weapons arsenal is the ability to ignore international copyright law. And I'm now glad to see that the Russians have recognized the same thing.

    Why couldn't they just threaten to put up a streaming-video website including pirated copies of every television show, American movie, and Netflix series? Wouldn't that potentially cost Hollywood many, many tens of billions of dollars each year? And if they put a smallish quantity well-designed political propaganda and "conspiracy theory" ideas in the sidebar, wouldn't that allow an end-run around the Controlled Media?

    Presumably, Western governments would try to put up a Great Firewall like China's, but assuming the video quality were good and the price were free, I'd think enormous numbers of ordinary Americans would try to save $50-100 per month in charges by using a VPN or something like that to watch Game of Thrones or Iron Man XII. After, all that's a vastly greater incentive that anything ordinary Chinese currently have.

    I'm absolutely no expert on these international Internet connectivity issues, but if I were Hollywood and the MSM, I'd be more than a little nervous.

    Why couldn’t they just threaten to put up a streaming-video website including pirated copies of every television show, American movie, and Netflix series? Wouldn’t that potentially cost Hollywood many, many tens of billions of dollars each year?

    This already exists though- websites freely streaming every single television show, American movie, and every latest netflix series (even in English).

    Most people watch things on free sites nowadays, and never pay to watch television shows or movies (unless they want to sit in cinema).

    I wonder who pays for things like netflix, when it’s all available for free and with the same quality and streaming speeds on other sites.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Singh
    Non-jews :P

    & console peasants. Lot of people like the convenience, similar to why people adopt LW views।।

    , @Daniel Chieh
    I pay to support art that I want to see more of. For the usual Hollywood rot, why would I waste either time, money or mental energy?
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  59. utu says:
    @peterAUS
    If I may.

    "Citizen" analogy.
    Two friends going for a drink. A professional and his friend.
    A couple of thugs start mouthing of to a friend. He wants to leave the place. The pro assures him, should any of those punks try anything he'll floor them. The friend doesn't show fear, the food for the punks. Hungry for that and frustrated they pounce on the friend.
    The pro simply steps back, keeping distance. The friend gets kicked, on the ground, a couple of times. Punks, fed, laugh and leave.
    The pro explains he could have ruined his career, livehood, by flooring them.
    The friend simply replies: "You shouldn't have promised"

    The problem here is not the Russian inaction. That was a wise, prudent move. Actually, the only rational move of all the players there.
    That's not the point.

    They were promising, saying something quite different from what they have done.
    Promise-delivery. The most fundamental elements of human interaction.

    I don't think "humiliation" is the proper word. Semantics.
    "Dissapointment"feels more fitting here.

    And, in real world, "credibility" is all what matters.

    So, the regime in Kremlin "dissapointed" and lost a bit/some/a lot/all of their credibility.

    One more thing, probably the most important, really.
    RESPECT.

    In the world of violence the most important element. From individual to the state alliances.
    Losing respect is a dangerous thing.
    Very dangerous.

    Your examples make people uncomfortable so they rather talk about housing prices. But you are right. It is about respect and Russia was humiliated just like it was humiliated one year ago. At that time I predicted that Putin would be out by the end of summer which did not happened. Apparently I have a different tolerance for humiliation that Russians.

    Read More
    • Replies: @JL

    Apparently I have a different tolerance for humiliation that Russians.
     
    It's true, you seem to have a very high tolerance for humiliation. One would think that broadcasting such a silly bet was humiliating enough, but here you are reminding everyone of it one year later.

    Generally speaking, if the choice presented is between being humiliated in a few meaningless battles while winning the war, as opposed to looking tough but losing it, the former option is the favorable one. Ultimately, results are what matter, not looking tough. Unless, of course, your combat is limited to writing anonymous comments on the internet.
    , @peterAUS
    The real value of sites like this is "people watching".

    I actually believe that TPTBs don't mind this site at all. That opens some other possibilities but let's keep to the topic at hand.

    Because the free speech is allowed here more than anywhere else and people coming and posting here aren't quite on the "mainstream" line this is a very good place to .........."watch".

    I believe that conclusions from that watching are, sort of, interesting.
    Sort of because they aren't new; just confirming some already well known facts.

    We could be ruled by psychopaths but they are smart and read the hoi polloi well.

    As I learnt ages ago: ruling people isn't about facts; it's all about "perception management".
    And that topic, "perception management" is a complicated beast. Very complicated and both managers and managed play by, I'd say, probably genetic rules.
    Or, it's not just "they" fool us, no, no...a half of it is "we want, need, to be fooled".

    Anyway, interesting.
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  60. Jon0815 says:
    @Mikel

    Yeah, as peterAUS said, I’m not sure to what extent this was a humiliation.

     

    If most everybody in the world (including a good chunk of you own people) think that you have been humiliated, then you have been humiliated, by definition. This is not a technical/quantitative term, it's a subjective/psychological one.

    With that said, you know much better than me how representative of the Russian public mood commenters at colonelcassad are. I haven't checked anywhere else. And we'll never know for sure how many interceptions there were but the Pentagon announced a strike on Syria, the targets they talked about were indeed hit by at least some missiles, the Russian didn't do anything visible about it and I think that's all there is to it, re humiliation perceptions.

    If most everybody in the world (including a good chunk of you own people) think that you have been humiliated, then you have been humiliated, by definition.

    What is the evidence that most everybody in the world, or even a majority of the world, has such an opinion?

    Was the USSR humiliated by not intervening to prevent the vastly more deadly and destructive US attacks on its ally North Vietnam?

    And even for sake of argument, granting that this was a humiliation- which is the bigger humiliation? The failure of Russia to protect Syria from a strike that killed nobody and destroyed only empty buildings? Or the USA being unable to prevent Russia from thwarting its goal of removing Assad?

    On balance, Russia’s highly successful intervention in Syria has clearly enhanced global perceptions of its strength.

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  61. Mikhail says: • Website
    @German_reader

    /pol/ no longer cares for him.
     
    I have my doubts though whether internet phenomena like /pol/ or the alt-right in general were ever really important for Trump's victory.
    I get the impression that a non-trivial part of Trump voters are people who have zero problem with an interventionist foreign policy. They may want to keep Mexicans out, but apart from that aren't really distinguishable from the kind of people who were fans of Bush II (e.g. fanatically pro-Israel with US and Israeli interests being seen as identical, permanent US global hegemony seen as a natural state of affairs, strong hostility to Russia, Iran, China). You see such people even on an "alternative" site like Unz review (in Sailer's Syria thread one particularly moronic commenter applauded Lindsey Graham for suggesting Assad should be "taken out"). So I wonder how much Trump has really been hurt by his Syria policy.
    In any case, the fact that Trump actually seems to have favored a more extreme course of action and was only reined in by his military advisers like Mattis is pretty disturbing.

    From someone (not me):

    I spent about 3 hours Saturday night watching the Russian analysis on the strikes, and the real-time videos, thorough military explanations with maps and satellite photos clearly showed what this farce was really like, and it is almost fun to compare the local US media briefings with these proofs. While the Pentagon declares this a “great success” and officials deny that their “smart” and other missiles were shot down, the videos I saw show them exploding in the air; there were 10 targets instead of 3 and the various airports, and other locations, were entirely protected by Syrian air defense systems, so no rockets ever reached them; not a SINGLE British rocket got through at all; the 13 hits that took out rockets by Syrians, as initially reported, were targeting Homs only; the French never actually participated in the bombing – their plane took off from France, flew over US-controlled territory, then flew back; the Brits first boasted that they sent 8 planes, then had to correct and admit there were 4, because in Cyprus they only have a TOTAL of 8 planes and 4 are always in repair/maintenance and everyone knows it. The only casualties were some wounded 3 or 6 people near an exploded arms depot. Two bombed facilities (of the 3 announces targets) were already abandoned, one having been bombed out by Israeli forces a while ago, but one bombed facility was a research center that was mainly devoted to cancer research. Great work!

    The military said that they had helped fix the Soviet-era Syrian defense systems and retrained the personnel over the past year. Russia had NOT used their own latest equipment, which was located in their bases of operation, and the US “coalition” flipped somersaults to avoid any possible hits in these areas because they were warned of definite counter-strikes by Russia. And this was not an empty threat, and they knew it.

    So all this was was bluster, bravado and nothing but a farce – as phony as the staged gas attack, and phony Skripal poisoning.

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    • Replies: @Philip Owen
    The BBC only ever said 4 planes and 8 missiles.
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  62. songbird says:
    @Polish Perspective
    The single best outcome of the Trump presidency collapse has probably been complete discrediting of the "reform from within" theory. Trump was the royal flush of that theory. Here's a maverick billionaire who's willing to go much further than any other candidate and who never simply flinched despite massive negative media coverage.

    The fantasy/delusion that such a person would then, suddenly in the WH, turn even more radical and suddenly sponsor right-wing deportation squads and implement blatantly pro-white policies (starting with immigration) has been exposed as the obvious hoax it always was.

    The US by the 2020s will reach a demographic tipping point that California reached in the early 2000s. The last GOP leader of California was Pete Wilson, who compared to Trump was far bolder and actually had real principles. But it was too late. Trump will likely be the last GOP president for a very, very long time. He already lost the popular vote by a non-trivial margin and hung on by the skin of his teeth. Every year, that performance will be harder. By the mid-2020s, it won't matter who is president. It will be a one-party state.

    What happens then will be very interesting. Even if "only" 20% of whites radicalise, that is still tens of millions. Furthermore, given the centrality of the US to the political and cultural heart of the rest of the white world, it will have repercussions to us, too.


    China has been uncharacteristically blunt in its support of Syria and Russia
     
    They've been quite staunch for some time now, but words are in the end, just words. Will China risk more than that? I doubt it, and why would they? Syria is just a lot of rocks and sand. Xi Jinping has been threatening Taiwan more than usual lately and they carried out a huge naval exercise in the SCS in the last few weeks.

    The Chinese are smart, not allowing themselves to be dragged in and take the opportunity when the West and Russia are focused on worthless sandlands to push aggressive maneuvers. They won't have to do much at this point, just avoid trouble and let the West fall in of itself, as this Syria conflict is obviously pushed by the Israel lobby in the US. There is no rational reason why we would support the removal of Assad if it wasn't for the fact that he is allied with Iran. China wisely stays out of such troubles, and it wisely restricts immigration so that middle eastern tribes cannot gain a foothold within its institutions.

    After all, Chinese history is replete with small foreign tribes nestling their ways into the halls of power. The Manchu were simply the latest ones. Everyone should read about Chinese history from the end of the Qing dynasty to the establishment of the PRC. It has real and valuable lessons for those of us who are now in a similar position that the Chinese themselves were in about 120 years ago.

    I wish I could see the parallels between the West and China 120 years ago, but frankly I don’t. The demographic situation – the key to all – is dramatically different. Foreigners in China were well below 0.1% of the population, at the time of the Boxer Rebellion. Most of those were men, few had children, almost none could be considered settlers. And they weren’t a democracy.

    It is really quite remarkable how the whole thing is remembered by the Chinese and how violent their response was, massacring women and children. I don’t mean to China bash – they weren’t as developed, and maybe shouldn’t be judged on modern standards. But, still, it is quite remarkable how they remember it. Most rational people in the West would be ecstatic to trade histories with the Chinese – our current existential crisis for their humiliation 120 years ago.

    Sorry, I don’t mean to be a black pill, but I think the Chinese are naturally more cohesive. A term like “racist” has a hard time gaining traction there. They remember slights; we don’t to the same degree.

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    • Agree: reiner Tor
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  63. JL says:
    @utu
    Your examples make people uncomfortable so they rather talk about housing prices. But you are right. It is about respect and Russia was humiliated just like it was humiliated one year ago. At that time I predicted that Putin would be out by the end of summer which did not happened. Apparently I have a different tolerance for humiliation that Russians.

    Apparently I have a different tolerance for humiliation that Russians.

    It’s true, you seem to have a very high tolerance for humiliation. One would think that broadcasting such a silly bet was humiliating enough, but here you are reminding everyone of it one year later.

    Generally speaking, if the choice presented is between being humiliated in a few meaningless battles while winning the war, as opposed to looking tough but losing it, the former option is the favorable one. Ultimately, results are what matter, not looking tough. Unless, of course, your combat is limited to writing anonymous comments on the internet.

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  64. songbird says:
    @John Gruskos
    Candidate Trump promised an administration similar to Eisenhower's:

    Low levels of legal immigration (like the McCarren Act), deportation of all illegal immigrants (like Operation Wetback), avoid counter-productive unnecessary wars (Eisenhower ended the Korean War, kept us out of Vietnam, defied the Israel lobby during the Suez Crisis, and moved towards detente with the Soviet Union after the 1957 purge of the "anti-Part group" Kaganovich etc.), balanced trade, relatively progressive taxation and relatively high financial regulation, balanced budgets, and infrastructure spending (interstate highway system).

    Expecting Trump to keep his promises and govern as a moderate nationalist like Eisenhower was not an unrealistic expectation.

    The real lesson is, never trust a man with a son-in-law like Jared Kushner.

    But some other candidate with good character and less New York entanglements, someone who isn't "the most pro-Israel guy", could conceivably beat Trump in the 2020 primaries, win the presidency, and implement Trump's 2020 platform.

    Bush 43 supposedly campaigned on non-intervention. Obama definitely campaigned on an end to government spying. Same is true of many other leaders in other countries.

    I can’t decide if Eisenhower was underrated or if the people and system were different back then. Maybe, Vietnam was much more destructive than anyone guessed, growing the deep state in a way previous wars – with wartime economies – didn’t.

    I don’t think Ike was a great extemporaneous speaker, but he did have a lot of experience.

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  65. utu says:

    The jihadis now know that all they need to do to provoke geometrically expanding retaliations against Assad is to continue setting up false flag gas attacks.

    They will be trying but it is not them who decides whether it will get 24/7 BBC coverage. If a tree falls in a forest…

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  66. This would be a very stupid move that would have a very direct and negative impact on several of my regular commenters.

    The day approacheth when I go full vatnik and swear allegiance to Rodina Mat.

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  67. Anonymous[392] • Disclaimer says:
    @Ron Unz

    Ceasing to recognize US copyrights. (“”This will be like a punch to the solar plexus for the Americans, because all achievements and all domination of the Anglo-Saxon, Western world are based on intellectual property and we are targeting this very right,” MP Mikhail Yemelyanov (Fair Russia) said in comments to Interfax.”)

    While the first two are not unexpected, the third one seems radical and far-reaching.
     
    Pretty funny. That was exactly my own suggestion from a few days ago when you had a thread about how Russia could "hit back," but I never got around to leaving a comment.

    For at least a decade or two, I've been telling people that one of the greatest underutilized advantages of possessing a nuclear weapons arsenal is the ability to ignore international copyright law. And I'm now glad to see that the Russians have recognized the same thing.

    Why couldn't they just threaten to put up a streaming-video website including pirated copies of every television show, American movie, and Netflix series? Wouldn't that potentially cost Hollywood many, many tens of billions of dollars each year? And if they put a smallish quantity well-designed political propaganda and "conspiracy theory" ideas in the sidebar, wouldn't that allow an end-run around the Controlled Media?

    Presumably, Western governments would try to put up a Great Firewall like China's, but assuming the video quality were good and the price were free, I'd think enormous numbers of ordinary Americans would try to save $50-100 per month in charges by using a VPN or something like that to watch Game of Thrones or Iron Man XII. After, all that's a vastly greater incentive that anything ordinary Chinese currently have.

    I'm absolutely no expert on these international Internet connectivity issues, but if I were Hollywood and the MSM, I'd be more than a little nervous.

    Why screw around with copyrights which could definitely hurt America, but not do so much harm.

    Russia could come out with a fully convertible currency backed by gold.

    This would be the nuclear option if the West pushed too far.

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    • Replies: @reiner Tor
    According to gold bug libertarians.
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  68. @Anonymous
    Why screw around with copyrights which could definitely hurt America, but not do so much harm.

    Russia could come out with a fully convertible currency backed by gold.

    This would be the nuclear option if the West pushed too far.

    According to gold bug libertarians.

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  69. LondonBob says:
    @Philip Owen
    And yet the US can't have been entirely dissatisified with Sharyat in 2017. The Israelis counted 57 hits out of 58 launches at that time. Have the Pantsirs improved so much?

    I don’t think it was as many as 58, I think the craters numbered in the 40s so they claimed double hits, which is doubtful there were that many. Since then the Rus have massively improved Syrian air defences.

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  70. @Ron Unz

    Ceasing to recognize US copyrights. (“”This will be like a punch to the solar plexus for the Americans, because all achievements and all domination of the Anglo-Saxon, Western world are based on intellectual property and we are targeting this very right,” MP Mikhail Yemelyanov (Fair Russia) said in comments to Interfax.”)

    While the first two are not unexpected, the third one seems radical and far-reaching.
     
    Pretty funny. That was exactly my own suggestion from a few days ago when you had a thread about how Russia could "hit back," but I never got around to leaving a comment.

    For at least a decade or two, I've been telling people that one of the greatest underutilized advantages of possessing a nuclear weapons arsenal is the ability to ignore international copyright law. And I'm now glad to see that the Russians have recognized the same thing.

    Why couldn't they just threaten to put up a streaming-video website including pirated copies of every television show, American movie, and Netflix series? Wouldn't that potentially cost Hollywood many, many tens of billions of dollars each year? And if they put a smallish quantity well-designed political propaganda and "conspiracy theory" ideas in the sidebar, wouldn't that allow an end-run around the Controlled Media?

    Presumably, Western governments would try to put up a Great Firewall like China's, but assuming the video quality were good and the price were free, I'd think enormous numbers of ordinary Americans would try to save $50-100 per month in charges by using a VPN or something like that to watch Game of Thrones or Iron Man XII. After, all that's a vastly greater incentive that anything ordinary Chinese currently have.

    I'm absolutely no expert on these international Internet connectivity issues, but if I were Hollywood and the MSM, I'd be more than a little nervous.

    Why couldn’t they just threaten to put up a streaming-video website including pirated copies of every television show, American movie, and Netflix series?

    Wouldn’t this run afoul of chemical weapons treaties, specifically with respect to the use of nerve agents?

    Read More
    • LOL: reiner Tor
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  71. Having read the debate here, I came to the following tentative conclusion, based on my present knowledge.

    1) the Russians might have been closer to the truth last year than I thought, but still probably exaggerated. But it’s actually possible they told the truth.

    2) this year they might be closer to the truth than the Americans or their allies.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Randal
    The US version is looking pretty tough to believe at the moment.
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  72. In an earlier post on another thread, I cited an OPCW report from 2017 that confirmed the destruction of 25 of 27 chemical weapons sites in Syria. Here is an update from 23 March 2018 that provides information on the remaining 2 sites:

    Progress by the Syrian Arab Republic is as follows:

    (a) The Secretariat has verified the destruction of 25 of the 27 chemical weapons production facilities (CWPFs) declared by the Syrian Arab Republic. As previously reported, in November 2017 the Secretariat conducted an initial inspection of the last two stationary above-ground facilities in accordance with paragraph 44 of Part V of the Verification Annex to the Chemical Weapons
    Convention (hereinafter “the Convention”). Thanks to the voluntary contributions provided by States Parties to the Syria Trust Fund for the Destruction of Chemical Weapons, including contributions provided in response to the Secretariat’s Note S/1541/2017 (dated 9 October 2017), the Secretariat, together with the United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS), has been making all the required arrangements to assist the Syrian Arab Republic in the destruction of the facilities located at these two sites.

    (b) In this regard, the Steering Committee, which consists of representatives of the Syrian Arab Republic, the OPCW, and UNOPS, met in Beirut, Lebanon, from 19 to 21 March 2018 to discuss additional amendments to the Tripartite Agreement concluded between those three parties on 9 September 2014, as previously amended. The additional amendments, which were agreed upon by
    the parties during the meeting, were necessary to reflect the work required to destroy the two remaining CWPFs. Once the remaining required arrangements are finalised, destruction is expected to take two to three months, subject to security conditions.

    (c) On 19 March 2018, the Syrian Arab Republic submitted to the Council its fifty-second monthly report (EC-88/P/NAT.1, dated 21 March 2018) regarding activities on its territory related to the destruction of its CWPFs, as required by paragraph 19 of EC-M-34/DEC.1.

    https://www.opcw.org/fileadmin/OPCW/EC/88/en/ec88dg01_e_.pdf

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  73. Mikhail says: • Website
    @German_reader

    /pol/ no longer cares for him.
     
    I have my doubts though whether internet phenomena like /pol/ or the alt-right in general were ever really important for Trump's victory.
    I get the impression that a non-trivial part of Trump voters are people who have zero problem with an interventionist foreign policy. They may want to keep Mexicans out, but apart from that aren't really distinguishable from the kind of people who were fans of Bush II (e.g. fanatically pro-Israel with US and Israeli interests being seen as identical, permanent US global hegemony seen as a natural state of affairs, strong hostility to Russia, Iran, China). You see such people even on an "alternative" site like Unz review (in Sailer's Syria thread one particularly moronic commenter applauded Lindsey Graham for suggesting Assad should be "taken out"). So I wonder how much Trump has really been hurt by his Syria policy.
    In any case, the fact that Trump actually seems to have favored a more extreme course of action and was only reined in by his military advisers like Mattis is pretty disturbing.

    From someone (not me):

    I spent about 3hours Saturday night watching the Russian analysis on the strikes, and the real-time videos, thorough military explanations with maps and satellite photos clearly showed what this farce was really like, and it is almost fun to compare the local US media briefings with these proofs. While the Pentagon declares this a “great success” and officials deny that their “smart” and other missiles were shot down, the videos I saw show them exploding in the air; there were 10 targets instead of 3 and the various airports, and other locations, were entirely protected by Syrian air defense systems, so no rockets ever reached them; not a SINGLE British rocket got through at all; the 13 hits that took out rockets by Syrians, as initially reported, were targeting Holms only; the French never actually participated in the bombing – their plane took off from France, flew over US-controlled territory, then flew back; the Brits first boasted that they sent 8 planes, then had to correct and admit there were 4, because in Cypress they only have a TOTAL of 8 planes and 4 are always in repair/maintenance and everyone knows it. The only casualties were some wounded 3 or 6 people near an exploded arms depot. Two bombed facilities (of the 3 announces targets) were already abandoned, one having been bombed out by Israeli forces a while ago, but one bombed facility was a research center that was mainly devoted to cancer research. Great work!

    The military said that they had helped fix the Soviet-era Syrian defense systems and retrained the personnel over the past year. Russia had NOT used their own latest equipment, which was located in their bases of operation, and the US “coalition” flipped somersaults to avoid any possible hits in these areas because they were warned of definite counter-strikes by Russia. And this was not an empty threat, and they knew it.

    So all this was was bluster, bravado and nothing but a farce – as phony as the staged gas attack, and phony Skripal poisoning.

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  74. Aslangeo says:
    @Dmitry
    Trump's success/failure in 2020 will depend firstly on the economic situation in 2020. If the economy is good, I think I have read that the president has almost always won the second term.

    The secondary factor will be who is the Democratic Party nomination for 2020, and what is their potential popularity. So far people have mentioned as a possibility Joe Biden and Elizabeth Warren.

    If the democrats choose a throwback like Biden or Warren then they would probably lose. If they want to win I would look for the following type of candidate

    1. A man – after Hillary women politicians would need a bit of a backseat
    2. A white man – to appeal to the Trump swing voters
    3. somebody younger – in their 40′s and vigorous – contrast to a Trump who will be pushing 74 and may not be in good health
    4. From a mid-western or southern state, the coastal states are the democrats anyway – the smart democrats will need to realise that they need to win the central ground
    5. Moderate – extreme liberalism does not attract new voters – the core vote will come out for you anyway and will project their fantasies on you
    6. keen to avoid foreign wars – Trump said that on the stump but changed his mind when he entered the white house

    Any ideas ?

    Read More
    • Replies: @LondonBob
    The Democrats have been very successfully picking white men with seemingly moderate views in the special elections so far.
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  75. LondonBob says:
    @Aslangeo
    If the democrats choose a throwback like Biden or Warren then they would probably lose. If they want to win I would look for the following type of candidate

    1. A man - after Hillary women politicians would need a bit of a backseat
    2. A white man - to appeal to the Trump swing voters
    3. somebody younger - in their 40's and vigorous - contrast to a Trump who will be pushing 74 and may not be in good health
    4. From a mid-western or southern state, the coastal states are the democrats anyway - the smart democrats will need to realise that they need to win the central ground
    5. Moderate - extreme liberalism does not attract new voters - the core vote will come out for you anyway and will project their fantasies on you
    6. keen to avoid foreign wars - Trump said that on the stump but changed his mind when he entered the white house

    Any ideas ?

    The Democrats have been very successfully picking white men with seemingly moderate views in the special elections so far.

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  76. Randal says:
    @Ron Unz

    Ceasing to recognize US copyrights. (“”This will be like a punch to the solar plexus for the Americans, because all achievements and all domination of the Anglo-Saxon, Western world are based on intellectual property and we are targeting this very right,” MP Mikhail Yemelyanov (Fair Russia) said in comments to Interfax.”)

    While the first two are not unexpected, the third one seems radical and far-reaching.
     
    Pretty funny. That was exactly my own suggestion from a few days ago when you had a thread about how Russia could "hit back," but I never got around to leaving a comment.

    For at least a decade or two, I've been telling people that one of the greatest underutilized advantages of possessing a nuclear weapons arsenal is the ability to ignore international copyright law. And I'm now glad to see that the Russians have recognized the same thing.

    Why couldn't they just threaten to put up a streaming-video website including pirated copies of every television show, American movie, and Netflix series? Wouldn't that potentially cost Hollywood many, many tens of billions of dollars each year? And if they put a smallish quantity well-designed political propaganda and "conspiracy theory" ideas in the sidebar, wouldn't that allow an end-run around the Controlled Media?

    Presumably, Western governments would try to put up a Great Firewall like China's, but assuming the video quality were good and the price were free, I'd think enormous numbers of ordinary Americans would try to save $50-100 per month in charges by using a VPN or something like that to watch Game of Thrones or Iron Man XII. After, all that's a vastly greater incentive that anything ordinary Chinese currently have.

    I'm absolutely no expert on these international Internet connectivity issues, but if I were Hollywood and the MSM, I'd be more than a little nervous.

    For at least a decade or two, I’ve been telling people that one of the greatest underutilized advantages of possessing a nuclear weapons arsenal is the ability to ignore international copyright law. And I’m now glad to see that the Russians have recognized the same thing.

    Indeed, because only a genuinely sovereign state that can defend itself from bullying by the world hegemon can so openly defy it, and possession of nuclear weapons (in fact possession of a secure second strike capability) is the only guarantor of such real sovereignty in a nuclear armed world.

    But openly defying international copyright law is likely to be seen as exercising the “nuclear option” in the economic sphere, I suspect. A lot of very powerful people are going to lose a lot of money (but probably not enough to make them no longer very powerful). Might be a bit like creating another few hundred Bill Browder types, only richer. If Russia does it, it can expect serious pushback.

    Plus, like effectively supporting parties of the nationalist right and race realists in the west, while it might be effective it would also require some contradiction of the Russian government’s own self-image to do so, I think.

    Presumably, Western governments would try to put up a Great Firewall like China’s, but assuming the video quality were good and the price were free, I’d think enormous numbers of ordinary Americans would try to save $50-100 per month in charges by using a VPN or something like that to watch Game of Thrones or Iron Man XII. After, all that’s a vastly greater incentive that anything ordinary Chinese currently have.

    Presumably such services are available now (I hear about them, but I don’t know because I don’t use them)? Isn’t a lot of the reason most people pay up just that it’s easier to pay than risk the downsides – illegality and the fear of getting caught, risks of computer corruption (both of which loom much larger for the technically unadept majority). How much different would Russian websites legal in Russia but illegal to visit (and probably viciously punished, with absurdly draconian exemplary fines and lengthy imprisonments) in the US sphere actually make?

    I would like to see it happen (because I think the world benefits from greater resistance to US power, and I’m not a big fan of over-enforcement of intellectual “property” laws generally, especially in the area of entertainment), but I’d bet against it happening. I still don’t see the Putin government having reached that bridge-burning stage, although they certainly seem to have taken this latest US outrage pretty seriously.

    Logically the response to this Syria incident should surely be beefing up support for Syria (especially Syrian air defences – moving towards a meaningful ability to exclude Israeli and US air power) and cooperation with Iran, surely? That is the response that would most make those responsible for the attacks grind their teeth in frustration, it seems to me.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dmitry
    All films, television series, netflix series, are available online for free, instant streaming already.

    And some of the best free streaming websites for tv series and netflix series, are not in the runet, but belong to some controversial American allies.

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  77. Randal says:
    @reiner Tor
    Having read the debate here, I came to the following tentative conclusion, based on my present knowledge.

    1) the Russians might have been closer to the truth last year than I thought, but still probably exaggerated. But it’s actually possible they told the truth.

    2) this year they might be closer to the truth than the Americans or their allies.

    The US version is looking pretty tough to believe at the moment.

    Read More
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  78. Dmitry says:
    @Randal

    For at least a decade or two, I’ve been telling people that one of the greatest underutilized advantages of possessing a nuclear weapons arsenal is the ability to ignore international copyright law. And I’m now glad to see that the Russians have recognized the same thing.
     
    Indeed, because only a genuinely sovereign state that can defend itself from bullying by the world hegemon can so openly defy it, and possession of nuclear weapons (in fact possession of a secure second strike capability) is the only guarantor of such real sovereignty in a nuclear armed world.

    But openly defying international copyright law is likely to be seen as exercising the "nuclear option" in the economic sphere, I suspect. A lot of very powerful people are going to lose a lot of money (but probably not enough to make them no longer very powerful). Might be a bit like creating another few hundred Bill Browder types, only richer. If Russia does it, it can expect serious pushback.

    Plus, like effectively supporting parties of the nationalist right and race realists in the west, while it might be effective it would also require some contradiction of the Russian government's own self-image to do so, I think.

    Presumably, Western governments would try to put up a Great Firewall like China’s, but assuming the video quality were good and the price were free, I’d think enormous numbers of ordinary Americans would try to save $50-100 per month in charges by using a VPN or something like that to watch Game of Thrones or Iron Man XII. After, all that’s a vastly greater incentive that anything ordinary Chinese currently have.
     
    Presumably such services are available now (I hear about them, but I don't know because I don't use them)? Isn't a lot of the reason most people pay up just that it's easier to pay than risk the downsides - illegality and the fear of getting caught, risks of computer corruption (both of which loom much larger for the technically unadept majority). How much different would Russian websites legal in Russia but illegal to visit (and probably viciously punished, with absurdly draconian exemplary fines and lengthy imprisonments) in the US sphere actually make?

    I would like to see it happen (because I think the world benefits from greater resistance to US power, and I'm not a big fan of over-enforcement of intellectual "property" laws generally, especially in the area of entertainment), but I'd bet against it happening. I still don't see the Putin government having reached that bridge-burning stage, although they certainly seem to have taken this latest US outrage pretty seriously.

    Logically the response to this Syria incident should surely be beefing up support for Syria (especially Syrian air defences - moving towards a meaningful ability to exclude Israeli and US air power) and cooperation with Iran, surely? That is the response that would most make those responsible for the attacks grind their teeth in frustration, it seems to me.

    All films, television series, netflix series, are available online for free, instant streaming already.

    And some of the best free streaming websites for tv series and netflix series, are not in the runet, but belong to some controversial American allies.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Randal
    Care to identify some of the sites, and assess how "safe" they are? I've heard this a lot, but it's outside my personal experience as I'm not that interested in Hollywood's output anyway, and in the past I've just taken the easy way out and paid up.
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  79. Singh says:
    @Dmitry

    Why couldn’t they just threaten to put up a streaming-video website including pirated copies of every television show, American movie, and Netflix series? Wouldn’t that potentially cost Hollywood many, many tens of billions of dollars each year?
     
    This already exists though- websites freely streaming every single television show, American movie, and every latest netflix series (even in English).

    Most people watch things on free sites nowadays, and never pay to watch television shows or movies (unless they want to sit in cinema).

    I wonder who pays for things like netflix, when it's all available for free and with the same quality and streaming speeds on other sites.

    Non-jews :P

    & console peasants. Lot of people like the convenience, similar to why people adopt LW views।।

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  80. but belong to some controversial American allies.

    Saudia Arabia? Bahrain? Phillipines?

    Read More
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  81. Randal says:
    @Dmitry
    All films, television series, netflix series, are available online for free, instant streaming already.

    And some of the best free streaming websites for tv series and netflix series, are not in the runet, but belong to some controversial American allies.

    Care to identify some of the sites, and assess how “safe” they are? I’ve heard this a lot, but it’s outside my personal experience as I’m not that interested in Hollywood’s output anyway, and in the past I’ve just taken the easy way out and paid up.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dmitry

    Care to identify some of the sites, and assess how “safe” they are? I’ve heard this a lot, but it’s outside my personal experience as I’m not that interested in Hollywood’s output anyway, and in the past I’ve just taken the easy way out and paid up.

     

    Of course, I never would watch pirated content, always pay for everything, and will never advocate piracy.

    But just for academic purposes.

    The most famous site for streaming films in English, is putlocker. (A British website).

    And for television series in English - every tv new show is freely available on zira ninja. (An Israeli website)

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  82. @Dmitry

    Why couldn’t they just threaten to put up a streaming-video website including pirated copies of every television show, American movie, and Netflix series? Wouldn’t that potentially cost Hollywood many, many tens of billions of dollars each year?
     
    This already exists though- websites freely streaming every single television show, American movie, and every latest netflix series (even in English).

    Most people watch things on free sites nowadays, and never pay to watch television shows or movies (unless they want to sit in cinema).

    I wonder who pays for things like netflix, when it's all available for free and with the same quality and streaming speeds on other sites.

    I pay to support art that I want to see more of. For the usual Hollywood rot, why would I waste either time, money or mental energy?

    Read More
    • Replies: @Mitleser
    What about the stuff in-between?
    The stuff not worth your money, but still interesting to watch.
    For instance, I recently watched Altered Carbon on Netflix (my sister's account) which was decent sci-fi, but also quite pozzed.
    I would not pay for it, but it was still worth a watch, at least the first six episodes.
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  83. Philip Owen says: • Website
    @Lemurmaniac
    Why are you so enamored with Israel? The use US equipment, and are thus incentervized to hype its effectiveness in order to contribute to their own carefully cultivated image of invincibility.

    An appeal to Israel is an appeal to authority of the worst kind.

    They also have a lot of skin in the game and thus a greater need to show realism which is why I appeal to them as an authority.

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    • Replies: @Lemurmaniac
    lol no dude

    If that were true they wouldn't have been caught napping when they wandered over the border into Lebanon in '06
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  84. Philip Owen says: • Website
    @Ron Unz

    Ceasing to recognize US copyrights. (“”This will be like a punch to the solar plexus for the Americans, because all achievements and all domination of the Anglo-Saxon, Western world are based on intellectual property and we are targeting this very right,” MP Mikhail Yemelyanov (Fair Russia) said in comments to Interfax.”)

    While the first two are not unexpected, the third one seems radical and far-reaching.
     
    Pretty funny. That was exactly my own suggestion from a few days ago when you had a thread about how Russia could "hit back," but I never got around to leaving a comment.

    For at least a decade or two, I've been telling people that one of the greatest underutilized advantages of possessing a nuclear weapons arsenal is the ability to ignore international copyright law. And I'm now glad to see that the Russians have recognized the same thing.

    Why couldn't they just threaten to put up a streaming-video website including pirated copies of every television show, American movie, and Netflix series? Wouldn't that potentially cost Hollywood many, many tens of billions of dollars each year? And if they put a smallish quantity well-designed political propaganda and "conspiracy theory" ideas in the sidebar, wouldn't that allow an end-run around the Controlled Media?

    Presumably, Western governments would try to put up a Great Firewall like China's, but assuming the video quality were good and the price were free, I'd think enormous numbers of ordinary Americans would try to save $50-100 per month in charges by using a VPN or something like that to watch Game of Thrones or Iron Man XII. After, all that's a vastly greater incentive that anything ordinary Chinese currently have.

    I'm absolutely no expert on these international Internet connectivity issues, but if I were Hollywood and the MSM, I'd be more than a little nervous.

    I am expecting drug patents to be infringed. Putin has been concerned personally that high value drugs are all imported. At one point 90% by value of Russian drugs were imports. It’s still not far off despite most generics now being made in Russia by Indian firms.

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  85. Philip Owen says: • Website
    @Mikhail
    From someone (not me):

    I spent about 3 hours Saturday night watching the Russian analysis on the strikes, and the real-time videos, thorough military explanations with maps and satellite photos clearly showed what this farce was really like, and it is almost fun to compare the local US media briefings with these proofs. While the Pentagon declares this a "great success" and officials deny that their "smart" and other missiles were shot down, the videos I saw show them exploding in the air; there were 10 targets instead of 3 and the various airports, and other locations, were entirely protected by Syrian air defense systems, so no rockets ever reached them; not a SINGLE British rocket got through at all; the 13 hits that took out rockets by Syrians, as initially reported, were targeting Homs only; the French never actually participated in the bombing - their plane took off from France, flew over US-controlled territory, then flew back; the Brits first boasted that they sent 8 planes, then had to correct and admit there were 4, because in Cyprus they only have a TOTAL of 8 planes and 4 are always in repair/maintenance and everyone knows it. The only casualties were some wounded 3 or 6 people near an exploded arms depot. Two bombed facilities (of the 3 announces targets) were already abandoned, one having been bombed out by Israeli forces a while ago, but one bombed facility was a research center that was mainly devoted to cancer research. Great work!

    The military said that they had helped fix the Soviet-era Syrian defense systems and retrained the personnel over the past year. Russia had NOT used their own latest equipment, which was located in their bases of operation, and the US "coalition" flipped somersaults to avoid any possible hits in these areas because they were warned of definite counter-strikes by Russia. And this was not an empty threat, and they knew it.

    So all this was was bluster, bravado and nothing but a farce - as phony as the staged gas attack, and phony Skripal poisoning.

    The BBC only ever said 4 planes and 8 missiles.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Philip Owen
    4 bombers.
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  86. Gigi says:

    (Last) Confirmations 1: 2nd target in Syria – out of the 22 missiles launched (officially) there, there are only 9 craters geolocated, and out of these 9, only 5 hit the targets while 4 hit fields nearby:

    (Last) Confirmations 2: “Trump’s Big Flop In Syria” by US colonel Pat Lang:

    “If you could go to the CAOC (i.e., the Combined Air Operations Center) located at the Al Udeid Air Force Base in Qatar and speak to officers working for CENTCOM, you would hear a mixture of disgust, shock and anger from many over the President’s claim of “Mission Accomplished.” And I am talking about people who have been supportive of President Trump. But Trump, with the sycophants at the Pentagon and the Joint Staff, has crossed a line into delusional thinking…
    There are at least three sources–First, the United States fully coordinated and deconflicted the attack in Syria with the Russians; Second, well over 50% of the TLAMs launched by the United States, France and Britain were shot down by air defense systems in Syria; and Third, the pundits (like retired General Jack Keane) and politicians who are insisting foolishly that Russia is a second rate military power and won’t hit back.”

    http://turcopolier.typepad.com/sic_semper_tyrannis/2018/04/trumps-big-flop-in-syria-by-publius-tacitus.html

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  87. Sean says:
    @Mitleser
    If Iran falls, Russia will be next.

    Taking out Iran would give Israel confidence. It would only remain to destablise Jordan and send back to their homelan in the already existing state of Jordan, the West Bank Arabs (who travel abroad on Jordanian passports)

    http://www.martin-van-creveld.com/turmoil-in-the-holy-land/

    What should be done: Speaking as an Israeli now, given that real peace is out of reach for a long, long time to come, there seem to be two courses. The first would be for my country to complete the wall it has built around the West Bank in such a way as to get rid as of many Palestinians, specifically including most of those who live in East Jerusalem, as possible. That done, it should tell the settlers it is withdrawing and take as many of them as possible along. If, after that, the Palestinians in the West Bank still cause trouble, then Israel should deal with them as it dealt with Gaza in 2014. This has long been my own position; however, unless pressure is applied form outside it is very unlikely to happen.

    The second would be to hope for the collapse of the Hashemite Kingdom and its occupation by Daesh or some similar organization. That would create an opportunity to repeat the events of 1948 and throw the Palestinians of the West Bank across the River Jordan. .

    Then the West will be free to clear its own house. I don’t think it would be necessary to fight Russia.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Greasy William
    Van Creveld is a nutter who wrote a great book about military logistics a billion years ago and has been living off that ever since.

    Ignore his delusional outbursts.
    , @Talha

    collapse of the Hashemite Kingdom
     
    They way things are going, the Hashemite Kingdom will be more an more Palestinian. The current heir is half-Palestinian and if he marries a Palestinian woman - the next heir will be 3/4. Yet they will remain Hashemite (Sharifs/Syeds) since that passes through the father.

    Van Creveld is a serious military historian/researcher - he is simply being realistic. I personally appreciate the honesty - and at leastthe first option he outlines is to remove Israeli settlers from the WB. That is out-of-the-box thinking most Israelis won't even consider; it gets respect (especially if he is talking about cordoning off East Jerusalem from Israel and not annexing it) from someone like me.

    Peace.
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  88. Mitleser says:
    @Daniel Chieh
    I pay to support art that I want to see more of. For the usual Hollywood rot, why would I waste either time, money or mental energy?

    What about the stuff in-between?
    The stuff not worth your money, but still interesting to watch.
    For instance, I recently watched Altered Carbon on Netflix (my sister’s account) which was decent sci-fi, but also quite pozzed.
    I would not pay for it, but it was still worth a watch, at least the first six episodes.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Daniel Chieh
    I suppose that's what your relative's netflix account is for :D

    And piracy, yes. I've thought about pirating Black Panther.
    , @songbird
    Altered Carbon: anything where people get to switch bodies and therefore races and sexes is like crack cocaine to the Left. Some of the of write-ups for it were really hilarious. Very interesting material for anyone trying to get insight into a certain mentality. I read one with at least 20 references to race, let alone references to sex. Some people really have gone insane, and after having gone insane, they push others to follow.
    , @dfordoom

    I recently watched Altered Carbon on Netflix (my sister’s account) which was decent sci-fi, but also quite pozzed.
     
    If it's pozzed don't pay for it. You're just encouraging more poz.
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  89. @Mitleser
    What about the stuff in-between?
    The stuff not worth your money, but still interesting to watch.
    For instance, I recently watched Altered Carbon on Netflix (my sister's account) which was decent sci-fi, but also quite pozzed.
    I would not pay for it, but it was still worth a watch, at least the first six episodes.

    I suppose that’s what your relative’s netflix account is for :D

    And piracy, yes. I’ve thought about pirating Black Panther.

    Read More
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  90. @Polish Perspective
    The single best outcome of the Trump presidency collapse has probably been complete discrediting of the "reform from within" theory. Trump was the royal flush of that theory. Here's a maverick billionaire who's willing to go much further than any other candidate and who never simply flinched despite massive negative media coverage.

    The fantasy/delusion that such a person would then, suddenly in the WH, turn even more radical and suddenly sponsor right-wing deportation squads and implement blatantly pro-white policies (starting with immigration) has been exposed as the obvious hoax it always was.

    The US by the 2020s will reach a demographic tipping point that California reached in the early 2000s. The last GOP leader of California was Pete Wilson, who compared to Trump was far bolder and actually had real principles. But it was too late. Trump will likely be the last GOP president for a very, very long time. He already lost the popular vote by a non-trivial margin and hung on by the skin of his teeth. Every year, that performance will be harder. By the mid-2020s, it won't matter who is president. It will be a one-party state.

    What happens then will be very interesting. Even if "only" 20% of whites radicalise, that is still tens of millions. Furthermore, given the centrality of the US to the political and cultural heart of the rest of the white world, it will have repercussions to us, too.


    China has been uncharacteristically blunt in its support of Syria and Russia
     
    They've been quite staunch for some time now, but words are in the end, just words. Will China risk more than that? I doubt it, and why would they? Syria is just a lot of rocks and sand. Xi Jinping has been threatening Taiwan more than usual lately and they carried out a huge naval exercise in the SCS in the last few weeks.

    The Chinese are smart, not allowing themselves to be dragged in and take the opportunity when the West and Russia are focused on worthless sandlands to push aggressive maneuvers. They won't have to do much at this point, just avoid trouble and let the West fall in of itself, as this Syria conflict is obviously pushed by the Israel lobby in the US. There is no rational reason why we would support the removal of Assad if it wasn't for the fact that he is allied with Iran. China wisely stays out of such troubles, and it wisely restricts immigration so that middle eastern tribes cannot gain a foothold within its institutions.

    After all, Chinese history is replete with small foreign tribes nestling their ways into the halls of power. The Manchu were simply the latest ones. Everyone should read about Chinese history from the end of the Qing dynasty to the establishment of the PRC. It has real and valuable lessons for those of us who are now in a similar position that the Chinese themselves were in about 120 years ago.

    Well,

    your playing fast and loose with the expectations. I did not expect the president to be more radical — I think the expectation was that one would not need an ironing board every other day to take the wrinkles out of what seems to be a suit that folds every day.

    I think there are more effective and cheaper ways of blunting supposed threats in this region.

    Read More
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  91. songbird says:
    @Mitleser
    What about the stuff in-between?
    The stuff not worth your money, but still interesting to watch.
    For instance, I recently watched Altered Carbon on Netflix (my sister's account) which was decent sci-fi, but also quite pozzed.
    I would not pay for it, but it was still worth a watch, at least the first six episodes.

    Altered Carbon: anything where people get to switch bodies and therefore races and sexes is like crack cocaine to the Left. Some of the of write-ups for it were really hilarious. Very interesting material for anyone trying to get insight into a certain mentality. I read one with at least 20 references to race, let alone references to sex. Some people really have gone insane, and after having gone insane, they push others to follow.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
    It's also, as Robin Hanson explained, very unrealistic:

    http://www.overcomingbias.com/2018/02/the-ems-of-altered-carbon.html
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  92. @Sean
    Taking out Iran would give Israel confidence. It would only remain to destablise Jordan and send back to their homelan in the already existing state of Jordan, the West Bank Arabs (who travel abroad on Jordanian passports)

    http://www.martin-van-creveld.com/turmoil-in-the-holy-land/

    What should be done: Speaking as an Israeli now, given that real peace is out of reach for a long, long time to come, there seem to be two courses. The first would be for my country to complete the wall it has built around the West Bank in such a way as to get rid as of many Palestinians, specifically including most of those who live in East Jerusalem, as possible. That done, it should tell the settlers it is withdrawing and take as many of them as possible along. If, after that, the Palestinians in the West Bank still cause trouble, then Israel should deal with them as it dealt with Gaza in 2014. This has long been my own position; however, unless pressure is applied form outside it is very unlikely to happen.

    The second would be to hope for the collapse of the Hashemite Kingdom and its occupation by Daesh or some similar organization. That would create an opportunity to repeat the events of 1948 and throw the Palestinians of the West Bank across the River Jordan. .
     

    Then the West will be free to clear its own house. I don't think it would be necessary to fight Russia.

    Van Creveld is a nutter who wrote a great book about military logistics a billion years ago and has been living off that ever since.

    Ignore his delusional outbursts.

    Read More
    • Replies: @reiner Tor
    Some of his other books were good, too.
    , @utu
    Delusional or saying how it is?

    Our armed forces, however, are not the thirtieth strongest in the world, but rather the second or third. We have the capability to take the world down with us. And I can assure you that that will happen before Israel goes under.
     
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  93. @Greasy William
    Van Creveld is a nutter who wrote a great book about military logistics a billion years ago and has been living off that ever since.

    Ignore his delusional outbursts.

    Some of his other books were good, too.

    Read More
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  94. Dmitry says:
    @Randal
    Care to identify some of the sites, and assess how "safe" they are? I've heard this a lot, but it's outside my personal experience as I'm not that interested in Hollywood's output anyway, and in the past I've just taken the easy way out and paid up.

    Care to identify some of the sites, and assess how “safe” they are? I’ve heard this a lot, but it’s outside my personal experience as I’m not that interested in Hollywood’s output anyway, and in the past I’ve just taken the easy way out and paid up.

    Of course, I never would watch pirated content, always pay for everything, and will never advocate piracy.

    But just for academic purposes.

    The most famous site for streaming films in English, is putlocker. (A British website).

    And for television series in English – every tv new show is freely available on zira ninja. (An Israeli website)

    Read More
    • LOL: reiner Tor
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  95. Trump wanted to bomb Russian & Iranian targets amid Syria strikes – report

    President Donald Trump reportedly favored bombing Russian and Iranian targets in Syria, before Pentagon chief James Mattis talked the US leader out of it.

    Trump discussed three military options for Syria last week with his revamped national security team, led by Bush-era hawk John Bolton, the Wall Street Journal reported on Saturday, citing sources familiar with White House decision-making . . .

    Finally, the most aggressive proposal might have included bombing Russian air defenses in Syria, in order to “cripple the regime’s military capabilities without touching [President Bashar] Assad’s political machinery.”

    The latter option, which would have been three times as powerful as the one eventually carried out by the US, the UK and France, was reportedly particularly favored by Trump, pressing his team to consider strikes on Russian and Iranian targets in Syria. The US president was willing to go that far to “get at the Assad regime’s military equipment.”

    https://www.rt.com/usa/424266-trump-russia-targets-strike/

    Read More
    • Replies: @Greasy William
    And yet he didn't go ahead with that.

    Are you now ready to admit that Russia won?
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  96. @for-the-record

    Trump wanted to bomb Russian & Iranian targets amid Syria strikes – report

    President Donald Trump reportedly favored bombing Russian and Iranian targets in Syria, before Pentagon chief James Mattis talked the US leader out of it.

    Trump discussed three military options for Syria last week with his revamped national security team, led by Bush-era hawk John Bolton, the Wall Street Journal reported on Saturday, citing sources familiar with White House decision-making . . .

    Finally, the most aggressive proposal might have included bombing Russian air defenses in Syria, in order to “cripple the regime’s military capabilities without touching [President Bashar] Assad’s political machinery.”

    The latter option, which would have been three times as powerful as the one eventually carried out by the US, the UK and France, was reportedly particularly favored by Trump, pressing his team to consider strikes on Russian and Iranian targets in Syria. The US president was willing to go that far to “get at the Assad regime’s military equipment.”

    https://www.rt.com/usa/424266-trump-russia-targets-strike/
     

    And yet he didn’t go ahead with that.

    Are you now ready to admit that Russia won?

    Read More
    • Replies: @for-the-record
    Are you now ready to admit that Russia won?

    I expressed no opinion on that, was only reporting the apparent preference of the 4-D chess master.
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  97. utu says:
    @Greasy William
    Van Creveld is a nutter who wrote a great book about military logistics a billion years ago and has been living off that ever since.

    Ignore his delusional outbursts.

    Delusional or saying how it is?

    Our armed forces, however, are not the thirtieth strongest in the world, but rather the second or third. We have the capability to take the world down with us. And I can assure you that that will happen before Israel goes under.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Greasy William

    Delusional or saying how it is?
     
    Delusional.

    The world is not going to be blackmailed by Israel and 150 thermonuclear warheads is not enough to end all life on earth anyway.

    If Russia launches a nuclear strike on Israel, Israel will nuke Russia in return to the point where Russia likely never recovers. But that isn't going to happen because Putin doesn't care enough about Israel to bother.

    Outside of a Russian nuclear attack, there is no way that Israel ever uses any of its nukes.

    And also, expelling the Palestinians from Judea and Samaria is a non starter. Never gonna happen.
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  98. @utu
    Delusional or saying how it is?

    Our armed forces, however, are not the thirtieth strongest in the world, but rather the second or third. We have the capability to take the world down with us. And I can assure you that that will happen before Israel goes under.
     

    Delusional or saying how it is?

    Delusional.

    The world is not going to be blackmailed by Israel and 150 thermonuclear warheads is not enough to end all life on earth anyway.

    If Russia launches a nuclear strike on Israel, Israel will nuke Russia in return to the point where Russia likely never recovers. But that isn’t going to happen because Putin doesn’t care enough about Israel to bother.

    Outside of a Russian nuclear attack, there is no way that Israel ever uses any of its nukes.

    And also, expelling the Palestinians from Judea and Samaria is a non starter. Never gonna happen.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
    Needless to say I don't share utu's fantasies on this score, but to speculate...

    In a nuclear war with Israel, Russia would presumably start off with a counterforce strike.

    As far as I know, most of Israel's nuclear forces are just bombs strapped onto fighters; even if they all somehow survive, they can hardly be expected to penetrate Russian air defenses. At most, a couple will get through to hit Sochi and Krasnodar, if they make it a suicide mission.

    Israel also has subs, which are likely to survive, but the delivery mechanism there is through a short-range cruise missile, not SLBMs. Can't hit any central Russian cities, even if by some miracle they sidle up to the Black Sea coast. Due to limited range of diesel submarines, sending them to the Baltic Sea to hit Saint-Petersburg isn't an option.

    That leaves only the Jericho 3 ICBMs. They will be destroyed, unless Israel launches them really quick (the PM will have only a few minutes to give the order). They would then destroyed any city they're launched again, except Moscow; the A-135 nuclear defense system around Moscow is probably capable of handling that (though a few areas of Moscow oblast will get flattened, with probably a few 10,000's deaths).
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  99. @Greasy William
    And yet he didn't go ahead with that.

    Are you now ready to admit that Russia won?

    Are you now ready to admit that Russia won?

    I expressed no opinion on that, was only reporting the apparent preference of the 4-D chess master.

    Read More
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  100. Talha says:

    The_Donald has become an echo chamber for his personality cult.

    Pffffshshshwahahahaha – and you guys want us to jump on this “democracy” band wagon??!! At least we know that our trains were wrecked by people who took the key and stuffed us into the cattle-car.

    You guys handed over the keys freely for your train wreck! Joke!

    Peace.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Anon

    Pffffshshshwahahahaha – and you guys want us to jump on this “democracy” band wagon??!!
     
    Chicago is not a democracy?
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  101. Philip Owen says: • Website
    @Philip Owen
    The BBC only ever said 4 planes and 8 missiles.

    4 bombers.

    Read More
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  102. Talha says:
    @Sean
    Taking out Iran would give Israel confidence. It would only remain to destablise Jordan and send back to their homelan in the already existing state of Jordan, the West Bank Arabs (who travel abroad on Jordanian passports)

    http://www.martin-van-creveld.com/turmoil-in-the-holy-land/

    What should be done: Speaking as an Israeli now, given that real peace is out of reach for a long, long time to come, there seem to be two courses. The first would be for my country to complete the wall it has built around the West Bank in such a way as to get rid as of many Palestinians, specifically including most of those who live in East Jerusalem, as possible. That done, it should tell the settlers it is withdrawing and take as many of them as possible along. If, after that, the Palestinians in the West Bank still cause trouble, then Israel should deal with them as it dealt with Gaza in 2014. This has long been my own position; however, unless pressure is applied form outside it is very unlikely to happen.

    The second would be to hope for the collapse of the Hashemite Kingdom and its occupation by Daesh or some similar organization. That would create an opportunity to repeat the events of 1948 and throw the Palestinians of the West Bank across the River Jordan. .
     

    Then the West will be free to clear its own house. I don't think it would be necessary to fight Russia.

    collapse of the Hashemite Kingdom

    They way things are going, the Hashemite Kingdom will be more an more Palestinian. The current heir is half-Palestinian and if he marries a Palestinian woman – the next heir will be 3/4. Yet they will remain Hashemite (Sharifs/Syeds) since that passes through the father.

    Van Creveld is a serious military historian/researcher – he is simply being realistic. I personally appreciate the honesty – and at leastthe first option he outlines is to remove Israeli settlers from the WB. That is out-of-the-box thinking most Israelis won’t even consider; it gets respect (especially if he is talking about cordoning off East Jerusalem from Israel and not annexing it) from someone like me.

    Peace.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Sean

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5587555/Historians-trace-Queens-heritage-Prophet-Muhammad.html

    Queen related to Prophet Muhammad? Historians believe Elizabeth II is a descendant of the founder of Islam after tracing her family tree back 43 generations
     

    The Queen is hereditary ruler of Muslims.


    Speaker of the Knesset Yuli-Yoel Edelstein is the son in law of Leonid Nevzlin, the billionaire head of the Siberian branch of Murder Incorporated (allegedly). Former Russians are going to increasingly dominate Israel, and that makes van Creveld's second option more likely.

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  103. peterAUS says:
    @utu
    Your examples make people uncomfortable so they rather talk about housing prices. But you are right. It is about respect and Russia was humiliated just like it was humiliated one year ago. At that time I predicted that Putin would be out by the end of summer which did not happened. Apparently I have a different tolerance for humiliation that Russians.

    The real value of sites like this is “people watching”.

    I actually believe that TPTBs don’t mind this site at all. That opens some other possibilities but let’s keep to the topic at hand.

    Because the free speech is allowed here more than anywhere else and people coming and posting here aren’t quite on the “mainstream” line this is a very good place to ……….”watch”.

    I believe that conclusions from that watching are, sort of, interesting.
    Sort of because they aren’t new; just confirming some already well known facts.

    We could be ruled by psychopaths but they are smart and read the hoi polloi well.

    As I learnt ages ago: ruling people isn’t about facts; it’s all about “perception management”.
    And that topic, “perception management” is a complicated beast. Very complicated and both managers and managed play by, I’d say, probably genetic rules.
    Or, it’s not just “they” fool us, no, no…a half of it is “we want, need, to be fooled”.

    Anyway, interesting.

    Read More
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  104. utu says:

    Who sets the talking point: Comprehensive Strategy

    http://www.unz.com/video/ramzpaul_the-comprehensive-strategy-dance/

    Read More
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  105. @Philip Owen
    They also have a lot of skin in the game and thus a greater need to show realism which is why I appeal to them as an authority.

    lol no dude

    If that were true they wouldn’t have been caught napping when they wandered over the border into Lebanon in ’06

    Read More
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  106. Sean says:
    @Talha

    collapse of the Hashemite Kingdom
     
    They way things are going, the Hashemite Kingdom will be more an more Palestinian. The current heir is half-Palestinian and if he marries a Palestinian woman - the next heir will be 3/4. Yet they will remain Hashemite (Sharifs/Syeds) since that passes through the father.

    Van Creveld is a serious military historian/researcher - he is simply being realistic. I personally appreciate the honesty - and at leastthe first option he outlines is to remove Israeli settlers from the WB. That is out-of-the-box thinking most Israelis won't even consider; it gets respect (especially if he is talking about cordoning off East Jerusalem from Israel and not annexing it) from someone like me.

    Peace.

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5587555/Historians-trace-Queens-heritage-Prophet-Muhammad.html

    Queen related to Prophet Muhammad? Historians believe Elizabeth II is a descendant of the founder of Islam after tracing her family tree back 43 generations

    The Queen is hereditary ruler of Muslims.

    Speaker of the Knesset Yuli-Yoel Edelstein is the son in law of Leonid Nevzlin, the billionaire head of the Siberian branch of Murder Incorporated (allegedly). Former Russians are going to increasingly dominate Israel, and that makes van Creveld’s second option more likely.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Talha

    The Queen is hereditary ruler of Muslims.
     
    Have we ever had queens except the one or two exceptions? You have to be Muslim to have claims to ruling Muslims. Also, this definitely (assuming it is correct) shows she has Prophetic lineage or genes (which is pretty cool), she wouldn't be considered a Sharif or Syed unless this is passed on from the male side.

    that makes van Creveld’s second option more likely.
     
    Well, that would seriously suck, but we'll have to get ourselves back on track and eventually exercise the Salahuddin option - we've got all the time in the world.

    Peace.
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  107. Talha says:
    @Sean

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5587555/Historians-trace-Queens-heritage-Prophet-Muhammad.html

    Queen related to Prophet Muhammad? Historians believe Elizabeth II is a descendant of the founder of Islam after tracing her family tree back 43 generations
     

    The Queen is hereditary ruler of Muslims.


    Speaker of the Knesset Yuli-Yoel Edelstein is the son in law of Leonid Nevzlin, the billionaire head of the Siberian branch of Murder Incorporated (allegedly). Former Russians are going to increasingly dominate Israel, and that makes van Creveld's second option more likely.

    The Queen is hereditary ruler of Muslims.

    Have we ever had queens except the one or two exceptions? You have to be Muslim to have claims to ruling Muslims. Also, this definitely (assuming it is correct) shows she has Prophetic lineage or genes (which is pretty cool), she wouldn’t be considered a Sharif or Syed unless this is passed on from the male side.

    that makes van Creveld’s second option more likely.

    Well, that would seriously suck, but we’ll have to get ourselves back on track and eventually exercise the Salahuddin option – we’ve got all the time in the world.

    Peace.

    Read More
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  108. @songbird
    Altered Carbon: anything where people get to switch bodies and therefore races and sexes is like crack cocaine to the Left. Some of the of write-ups for it were really hilarious. Very interesting material for anyone trying to get insight into a certain mentality. I read one with at least 20 references to race, let alone references to sex. Some people really have gone insane, and after having gone insane, they push others to follow.

    It’s also, as Robin Hanson explained, very unrealistic:

    http://www.overcomingbias.com/2018/02/the-ems-of-altered-carbon.html

    Read More
    • Replies: @Mitleser
    Hanson's criticism seems a bit questionable.

    While we see characters who seek minor local advantages get away for long times with violating the rule against copying, no one ever tries to do this to get vastly rich, or to win a war. No one even seems aware of the possibility.
     
    Trying to get vastly rich or winning a war with such means means you can't stay below the radar.
    Not to mention the destabilizing consequences for society, even if you manage to win.
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  109. @Greasy William

    Delusional or saying how it is?
     
    Delusional.

    The world is not going to be blackmailed by Israel and 150 thermonuclear warheads is not enough to end all life on earth anyway.

    If Russia launches a nuclear strike on Israel, Israel will nuke Russia in return to the point where Russia likely never recovers. But that isn't going to happen because Putin doesn't care enough about Israel to bother.

    Outside of a Russian nuclear attack, there is no way that Israel ever uses any of its nukes.

    And also, expelling the Palestinians from Judea and Samaria is a non starter. Never gonna happen.

    Needless to say I don’t share utu’s fantasies on this score, but to speculate…

    In a nuclear war with Israel, Russia would presumably start off with a counterforce strike.

    As far as I know, most of Israel’s nuclear forces are just bombs strapped onto fighters; even if they all somehow survive, they can hardly be expected to penetrate Russian air defenses. At most, a couple will get through to hit Sochi and Krasnodar, if they make it a suicide mission.

    Israel also has subs, which are likely to survive, but the delivery mechanism there is through a short-range cruise missile, not SLBMs. Can’t hit any central Russian cities, even if by some miracle they sidle up to the Black Sea coast. Due to limited range of diesel submarines, sending them to the Baltic Sea to hit Saint-Petersburg isn’t an option.

    That leaves only the Jericho 3 ICBMs. They will be destroyed, unless Israel launches them really quick (the PM will have only a few minutes to give the order). They would then destroyed any city they’re launched again, except Moscow; the A-135 nuclear defense system around Moscow is probably capable of handling that (though a few areas of Moscow oblast will get flattened, with probably a few 10,000′s deaths).

    Read More
    • Replies: @Randal
    All this talk about a nuclear war between Israel and Russia seems pretty bizarre. Of all the possible nuclear exchanges, it must be one of the least likely. Nuclear weapons are weapons of last resort only, if used against another nuclear power, for obvious reasons, and only usable in the case of an existential threat. Israel has no capability to threaten Russia's existence, and Russia has no present or foreseeably likely reason to threaten Israel's existence.

    A limited conventional war, now that actually seems quite possible at the moment, over Syria. The Israelis do seem to be going out of their way to annoy the Russians in their push to involve the US in Syria and to exercise their supposed right to bomb that country at will. I don't think the Russians were amused by the presumably intentionally provocative April 9th strike, and the Israelis are clearly a lot more upset about the idea of Russia continuing to beef up Syria's air defences than Greasy would have us believe.

    And it has been pointed out that the logical response from Russia to the US bullying its protégé is for Russia to bully the US's regional collaborators. There's not much Israel can do if Russia really does go all out to build Syria's defences up, and if they push too hard and end up killing some Russians they will probably find Russia is a lot more willing to strike back hard that it would be against the US. They might find themselves on the receiving end of some of Russia's pent up frustration at the US's behaviour.

    I don't know about you, but the Russian version of the results of the missile attacks is looking increasingly more plausible that the US one. It just doesn't seem credible that the US would have fired 76 Tomahawks and jassms at the tiny Barzeh complex, and Russia's breakdown of the results should be pretty concerning for Israel:

    The military spokesman said that the Syrian Air Defense Forces had used 112 surface-to-air missiles, including 25 Pansir missiles, to counter the US-led strike:
    ◾Buk sytems: 29 missiles were fired – 24 targets were hit;
    ◾Osa systems: 11 missiles were fired – 5 targets were hit;
    ◾S-125 systems: 13 missiles were fired – 5 targets were hit;
    ◾Strela-10 systems: 5 missiles were fired – 3 targets were hit;
    ◾Kvadrat systems: 21 missiles were fired – 11 targets were hit;
    ◾S-200 sysetms: 8 missiles were fired – no targets were hit;
    ◾Pantsir-S1 systems: 25 missiles were fired – 23 targets were hit;

    Konashenkov explained a poor performance of the S-200 system by the fact that it had been used in an attempt to hit aircraft.
     
    https://southfront.org/syrian-forces-launched-112-surface-to-air-missiles-to-repel-us-led-strike-russian-military/

    Suggests a pretty good close in defence performance by Pantsir.

    Presumably this level of success reflects considerable involvement of Russian intel in informing the Syrians of the approaching missiles, but it does suggest Syria could use beefed up systems effectively with Russian support.
    , @Dmitry

    That leaves only the Jericho 3 ICBMs. They will be destroyed, unless Israel launches them really quick
     
    The bases are underground to the West of Jerusalem.

    They spend a lot of time there (the last 20 years) digging things in this area West of Jerusalem, building nuclear bunkers, tunnels and bases.

    Probably the base where they put the ICBMs is this one.

    https://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/security-aviation/israeli-army-reveals-existence-of-previously-undisclosed-air-force-base-1.5494915

    , @Sean
    American politicians like Tom DeLay have repeatedly said that any country that attacks Israel with weapons of mass destruction would be destroyed by America, and US politicians only stopped saying it because the Israelis asked them to--it was becoming embarrassing. If Russia were to go nuclear in a war with Israel (although cannot think why on earth they would even consider such a thing ) it would hit the US with the first counter-force strike..
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  110. dfordoom says: • Website
    @Mitleser
    What about the stuff in-between?
    The stuff not worth your money, but still interesting to watch.
    For instance, I recently watched Altered Carbon on Netflix (my sister's account) which was decent sci-fi, but also quite pozzed.
    I would not pay for it, but it was still worth a watch, at least the first six episodes.

    I recently watched Altered Carbon on Netflix (my sister’s account) which was decent sci-fi, but also quite pozzed.

    If it’s pozzed don’t pay for it. You’re just encouraging more poz.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Talha

    You’re just encouraging more poz.
     
    Starve the poz.

    Do it legally, by the book:
    https://twitter.com/Mr_SherifGaber/status/983729481859944448

    "To leave Egypt or not leave...After my first video which was about homosexuality i lost almost all of my relatives including my mother and siblings. No one wanted to talk to me. But i kept going."
    https://sherifgaber.org/en/2709/

    Anybody want to give this guy asylum? Looks like Egypt doesn't want the poz. Looks like he's looking at a minimum of 5 years. I think that is pretty harsh for first time; public flogging or fine is probably a better first option.

    We'll throw in the ability for you guys to call us backwards and lecture us about human rights...c'mon, you know you want to...

    Peace.
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  111. Randal says:
    @Anatoly Karlin
    Needless to say I don't share utu's fantasies on this score, but to speculate...

    In a nuclear war with Israel, Russia would presumably start off with a counterforce strike.

    As far as I know, most of Israel's nuclear forces are just bombs strapped onto fighters; even if they all somehow survive, they can hardly be expected to penetrate Russian air defenses. At most, a couple will get through to hit Sochi and Krasnodar, if they make it a suicide mission.

    Israel also has subs, which are likely to survive, but the delivery mechanism there is through a short-range cruise missile, not SLBMs. Can't hit any central Russian cities, even if by some miracle they sidle up to the Black Sea coast. Due to limited range of diesel submarines, sending them to the Baltic Sea to hit Saint-Petersburg isn't an option.

    That leaves only the Jericho 3 ICBMs. They will be destroyed, unless Israel launches them really quick (the PM will have only a few minutes to give the order). They would then destroyed any city they're launched again, except Moscow; the A-135 nuclear defense system around Moscow is probably capable of handling that (though a few areas of Moscow oblast will get flattened, with probably a few 10,000's deaths).

    All this talk about a nuclear war between Israel and Russia seems pretty bizarre. Of all the possible nuclear exchanges, it must be one of the least likely. Nuclear weapons are weapons of last resort only, if used against another nuclear power, for obvious reasons, and only usable in the case of an existential threat. Israel has no capability to threaten Russia’s existence, and Russia has no present or foreseeably likely reason to threaten Israel’s existence.

    A limited conventional war, now that actually seems quite possible at the moment, over Syria. The Israelis do seem to be going out of their way to annoy the Russians in their push to involve the US in Syria and to exercise their supposed right to bomb that country at will. I don’t think the Russians were amused by the presumably intentionally provocative April 9th strike, and the Israelis are clearly a lot more upset about the idea of Russia continuing to beef up Syria’s air defences than Greasy would have us believe.

    And it has been pointed out that the logical response from Russia to the US bullying its protégé is for Russia to bully the US’s regional collaborators. There’s not much Israel can do if Russia really does go all out to build Syria’s defences up, and if they push too hard and end up killing some Russians they will probably find Russia is a lot more willing to strike back hard that it would be against the US. They might find themselves on the receiving end of some of Russia’s pent up frustration at the US’s behaviour.

    I don’t know about you, but the Russian version of the results of the missile attacks is looking increasingly more plausible that the US one. It just doesn’t seem credible that the US would have fired 76 Tomahawks and jassms at the tiny Barzeh complex, and Russia’s breakdown of the results should be pretty concerning for Israel:

    The military spokesman said that the Syrian Air Defense Forces had used 112 surface-to-air missiles, including 25 Pansir missiles, to counter the US-led strike:
    ◾Buk sytems: 29 missiles were fired – 24 targets were hit;
    ◾Osa systems: 11 missiles were fired – 5 targets were hit;
    ◾S-125 systems: 13 missiles were fired – 5 targets were hit;
    ◾Strela-10 systems: 5 missiles were fired – 3 targets were hit;
    ◾Kvadrat systems: 21 missiles were fired – 11 targets were hit;
    ◾S-200 sysetms: 8 missiles were fired – no targets were hit;
    ◾Pantsir-S1 systems: 25 missiles were fired – 23 targets were hit;

    Konashenkov explained a poor performance of the S-200 system by the fact that it had been used in an attempt to hit aircraft.

    https://southfront.org/syrian-forces-launched-112-surface-to-air-missiles-to-repel-us-led-strike-russian-military/

    Suggests a pretty good close in defence performance by Pantsir.

    Presumably this level of success reflects considerable involvement of Russian intel in informing the Syrians of the approaching missiles, but it does suggest Syria could use beefed up systems effectively with Russian support.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dmitry
    War between Russia and Israel is about as likely as war between Russia and Turkey - i.e. not likely (unless there is some sudden change of leaders at the Kremlin).

    You can see the official view from the television. 15 years ago, television channels were anti-Israel. Whereas nowadays, there is a change in the official view - which became very balanced and always tries to include the Israel official view in the report (e.g. watch Sergey Pashkov reports)

    The official ideology nowadays seems for Russia's role in the Middle East, is a kind of fair-minded, neutral protectors and moderators of all the different colourful people of the Middle East. Like some noble teacher who breaks up the argument between children in the school playground.

    Of course this all 'goes out the window' whenever the subject of America is mentioned.

    And of course this is some kind of 'white man's burden' (from the famous English poet) viewpoint, and probably not related to real, more cynical reasons, for the limited intervention in the region.

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  112. Mikel says:
    @peterAUS
    An idea.

    It appears that the usual "Team Russia", still, isn't on the roll here.
    They will, of course. Damage control.

    While we are waiting for them to swamp this thread, how about:
    This is, sort of, a post-action report. Usually, as a part of it, suggestions are made aabout how to do better next time.
    Say, we are top Kremlin advisers. People Putin and his team listen to. At least listen.
    So....what would we suggest them?

    I'll go first.
    Operational goal: eradicate the Assad's regime enemy in the area deemed good enough for the next stage of talks. In essence, for the splitting of the country.
    In simple terms: this is the new Assad Syria.
    Execution:
    Intent:commit to the above with the full resources of the Russian state. Full.
    Details: deploy maximum air assets in the region. Conduct around the clock bombing campaign. Send in the troops. An airborne division, at least. At least.....
    Start waging a complete, Iraqi style (West side) war in Syria.
    Go in witth full force, eradicate, secure. Give it to the ally.
    Get out.
    Timeframe: 3 months, tops.

    And I say, a full commitment. Everything/anything short of tactical nukes.
    Whatever it takes.

    I know it won't happen.
    Something else will.
    The opposite, most likely.

    So it looks like “Team Russia”, as you call them, are not going to show up. It could have been interesting but it may may be better that way. I just saw at Martyanov’s blog how he is taking the Russian MoD version of the Syrian AD systems performance at face value (possibly as silly as doing the same with the Pentagon’s version) and convincing himself that this further reinforces his claims about the huge Russian technological advantage. Not a pretty sight.

    Read More
    • Replies: @peterAUS

    So it looks like “Team Russia”, as you call them, are not going to show up.
     
    Well, a couple of them, rational types, know what just happened and it's not pretty. "My" side showed power and borderline lunacy. "Their" side showed weakness and statesmanship.
    The only important is what happens next when the same combination gets played out. And neither "side" has anything to be proud of, actually.
    The rest, majority, fanboys, feel they won't be able to satisfy that emotional need with this particular topic.

    It could have been interesting but it may may be better that way. I just saw at Martyanov’s blog how he is taking the Russian MoD version of the Syrian AD systems performance at face value (possibly as silly as doing the same with the Pentagon’s version) and convincing himself that this further reinforces his claims about the huge Russian technological advantage. Not a pretty sight.
     
    Yup.
    Talking about missing the point by a mile.
    It's even worse if those weapons systems are that good, in fact. Go figure.

    All this...."conversation" about the event is actually skewed.

    Instead of acknowledging that something really bad happened majority of "both" sides are just playing this down.
    "Team Russia" because their side showed weakness, "Team USA" because their side showed borderline lunacy.

    Good thing is, who cares really what we here think, feel, write or read.

    I am personally not impressed by the quality of conversation overall on his site. The prime quality, as I said, is the free speech so some things, at least, can be said. The quality of that written down is another matter. Say, could be much better, IMHO.

    Haha...I mean....FFS, the most popular thread is about possibility of WWIII. The second is about Asian girls hair. You can't make that up.

    I've found, overall, all that a bit..........sad.

    People here love to point how delusional the rest of Internet presence is. Well, plenty of delusion here too. And, not enough, in spite of free speech, deep enough quality conversation.

    Overall, disappointing.

    But, at the same time, well, the reality is the reality.
    It is good, in some way, to see that the core behavior we find everywhere else we find here too.
    The power of emotional attachment and investment in particular. Keyword "emotional".
    I've been "trawling" some other sites too. The level of "my team", "your team" is funny.
    One thing that surprised me a bit is how the Cold War feelings still run deep among ex/current military personnel.

    In any case, we'll see more of the same, on the ground, there.
    That's all what matters. Or, what really matters, that things don't escalate into nuclear. All the rest....good.

    And, details wise, there have been some opinions about how Russia should react to all that.
    I still believe that nothing short of significant ground commitment there will make any difference whatsoever. The grind will just go on.
    And, yes, Assad/Russia/the rest will keep winning. They've been winning since Russians got there. One village at the time. Always winning. And winning...and winning..and winning.
    Funny.
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  113. peterAUS says:
    @Mikel
    So it looks like "Team Russia", as you call them, are not going to show up. It could have been interesting but it may may be better that way. I just saw at Martyanov's blog how he is taking the Russian MoD version of the Syrian AD systems performance at face value (possibly as silly as doing the same with the Pentagon's version) and convincing himself that this further reinforces his claims about the huge Russian technological advantage. Not a pretty sight.

    So it looks like “Team Russia”, as you call them, are not going to show up.

    Well, a couple of them, rational types, know what just happened and it’s not pretty. “My” side showed power and borderline lunacy. “Their” side showed weakness and statesmanship.
    The only important is what happens next when the same combination gets played out. And neither “side” has anything to be proud of, actually.
    The rest, majority, fanboys, feel they won’t be able to satisfy that emotional need with this particular topic.

    It could have been interesting but it may may be better that way. I just saw at Martyanov’s blog how he is taking the Russian MoD version of the Syrian AD systems performance at face value (possibly as silly as doing the same with the Pentagon’s version) and convincing himself that this further reinforces his claims about the huge Russian technological advantage. Not a pretty sight.

    Yup.
    Talking about missing the point by a mile.
    It’s even worse if those weapons systems are that good, in fact. Go figure.

    All this….”conversation” about the event is actually skewed.

    Instead of acknowledging that something really bad happened majority of “both” sides are just playing this down.
    “Team Russia” because their side showed weakness, “Team USA” because their side showed borderline lunacy.

    Good thing is, who cares really what we here think, feel, write or read.

    I am personally not impressed by the quality of conversation overall on his site. The prime quality, as I said, is the free speech so some things, at least, can be said. The quality of that written down is another matter. Say, could be much better, IMHO.

    Haha…I mean….FFS, the most popular thread is about possibility of WWIII. The second is about Asian girls hair. You can’t make that up.

    I’ve found, overall, all that a bit……….sad.

    People here love to point how delusional the rest of Internet presence is. Well, plenty of delusion here too. And, not enough, in spite of free speech, deep enough quality conversation.

    Overall, disappointing.

    But, at the same time, well, the reality is the reality.
    It is good, in some way, to see that the core behavior we find everywhere else we find here too.
    The power of emotional attachment and investment in particular. Keyword “emotional”.
    I’ve been “trawling” some other sites too. The level of “my team”, “your team” is funny.
    One thing that surprised me a bit is how the Cold War feelings still run deep among ex/current military personnel.

    In any case, we’ll see more of the same, on the ground, there.
    That’s all what matters. Or, what really matters, that things don’t escalate into nuclear. All the rest….good.

    And, details wise, there have been some opinions about how Russia should react to all that.
    I still believe that nothing short of significant ground commitment there will make any difference whatsoever. The grind will just go on.
    And, yes, Assad/Russia/the rest will keep winning. They’ve been winning since Russians got there. One village at the time. Always winning. And winning…and winning..and winning.
    Funny.

    Read More
    • Replies: @reiner Tor

    Haha…I mean….FFS, the most popular thread is about possibility of WWIII. The second is about Asian girls hair. You can’t make that up.
     
    I used to like Steve Sailer very much, and I still like him. I just cannot understand how neither he nor especially his commenters take this Syria issue seriously. I checked the comments in his Syria threads (there were I think only two), and a relatively large portion of the comments consisted of jingoism and the like. But what astonished me how few comments it got. Apparently no foreign policy minded people are there. One important reason for this was that Steve himself didn’t write anything about it, merely asked for the opinions of the commentariat. Which is strange, but I guess he really doesn’t care for foreign policy.
    , @Mikel

    “My” side showed power and borderline lunacy. “Their” side showed weakness and statesmanship.
     
    A good summary but the statesmanship of the Russian side could perhaps be put into question. On the one hand, ambassadors should be asked to avoid making threats that their leaders are not prepared to deliver. On the other hand, maybe they should have replied to the symbolic attack with some other symbolic gesture. Say, flying one of those formidable weapons over the attackers' heads?

    As you say, what matters is what comes next. Now that the hawks are in full control in DC, doing nothing and letting your ally on the ground be bombarded can only embolden them further.

    Regarding Sailer, I actually like him very much. He's a very good and ingenious writer and I don't remember having ever been in clear disagreement with him. But there's only so much I can read about "HBD" matters on a given week. I don't read comments to his posts.

    Unz is the best overall opinion and debate website I know of on the web.
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  114. @peterAUS

    So it looks like “Team Russia”, as you call them, are not going to show up.
     
    Well, a couple of them, rational types, know what just happened and it's not pretty. "My" side showed power and borderline lunacy. "Their" side showed weakness and statesmanship.
    The only important is what happens next when the same combination gets played out. And neither "side" has anything to be proud of, actually.
    The rest, majority, fanboys, feel they won't be able to satisfy that emotional need with this particular topic.

    It could have been interesting but it may may be better that way. I just saw at Martyanov’s blog how he is taking the Russian MoD version of the Syrian AD systems performance at face value (possibly as silly as doing the same with the Pentagon’s version) and convincing himself that this further reinforces his claims about the huge Russian technological advantage. Not a pretty sight.
     
    Yup.
    Talking about missing the point by a mile.
    It's even worse if those weapons systems are that good, in fact. Go figure.

    All this...."conversation" about the event is actually skewed.

    Instead of acknowledging that something really bad happened majority of "both" sides are just playing this down.
    "Team Russia" because their side showed weakness, "Team USA" because their side showed borderline lunacy.

    Good thing is, who cares really what we here think, feel, write or read.

    I am personally not impressed by the quality of conversation overall on his site. The prime quality, as I said, is the free speech so some things, at least, can be said. The quality of that written down is another matter. Say, could be much better, IMHO.

    Haha...I mean....FFS, the most popular thread is about possibility of WWIII. The second is about Asian girls hair. You can't make that up.

    I've found, overall, all that a bit..........sad.

    People here love to point how delusional the rest of Internet presence is. Well, plenty of delusion here too. And, not enough, in spite of free speech, deep enough quality conversation.

    Overall, disappointing.

    But, at the same time, well, the reality is the reality.
    It is good, in some way, to see that the core behavior we find everywhere else we find here too.
    The power of emotional attachment and investment in particular. Keyword "emotional".
    I've been "trawling" some other sites too. The level of "my team", "your team" is funny.
    One thing that surprised me a bit is how the Cold War feelings still run deep among ex/current military personnel.

    In any case, we'll see more of the same, on the ground, there.
    That's all what matters. Or, what really matters, that things don't escalate into nuclear. All the rest....good.

    And, details wise, there have been some opinions about how Russia should react to all that.
    I still believe that nothing short of significant ground commitment there will make any difference whatsoever. The grind will just go on.
    And, yes, Assad/Russia/the rest will keep winning. They've been winning since Russians got there. One village at the time. Always winning. And winning...and winning..and winning.
    Funny.

    Haha…I mean….FFS, the most popular thread is about possibility of WWIII. The second is about Asian girls hair. You can’t make that up.

    I used to like Steve Sailer very much, and I still like him. I just cannot understand how neither he nor especially his commenters take this Syria issue seriously. I checked the comments in his Syria threads (there were I think only two), and a relatively large portion of the comments consisted of jingoism and the like. But what astonished me how few comments it got. Apparently no foreign policy minded people are there. One important reason for this was that Steve himself didn’t write anything about it, merely asked for the opinions of the commentariat. Which is strange, but I guess he really doesn’t care for foreign policy.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Randal

    I used to like Steve Sailer very much, and I still like him.
     
    I do, too. If I could, I'd have his bigger pieces compulsorily syndicated to all UK publications claiming to be in any way right of centre. The main reason I don't post there more often is that he manages the conversations too much, meaning he often postpones approving a comment for a long time if he (presumably) would prefer it not to show up. It means it's difficult to have any sustained conversation there.

    I also, like you, prefer the foreign policy focus in Anatoly's community.

    But US domestic policy, culture and politics is unfortunately all of our concern, living within the US sphere, as it affects us directly. Probably more so in the UK than in continental European countries, but even there as well.
    , @peterAUS
    I've taken two points from this exercise (bombing).

    The first is that a majority does not care. Just does not care.
    Why, for me, does not matter.
    That, though, points to a deeper truth about people, society, politics etc.
    All the rest we see and face today, and will in future, is the result of that fact.

    Second is that the regime in Kremlin will keep backing up whenever pushed.
    Its strategy is buying time for themselves, first and foremost. In plain language, enjoy while it lasts.
    All the rest we'll see between The Empire and Russia will be the result of that fact.
    Maybe Kremlin is correct. The Empire will implode.
    Maybe it will be other way around. The Empire will swallow the Russia, whole or in parts.
    I'd go 30/70 there.
    Of course, miracles do happen. We'll see.
    , @dfordoom

    I used to like Steve Sailer very much, and I still like him. I just cannot understand how neither he nor especially his commenters take this Syria issue seriously. I checked the comments in his Syria threads (there were I think only two), and a relatively large portion of the comments consisted of jingoism and the like.
     
    That's the depressing thing about American right-wingers. So many of them think that being conservative means being obsessed with guns and worshipping the military and the police.

    And then there are the libertarians, just as crazy but in a different way.
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  115. Randal says:
    @reiner Tor

    Haha…I mean….FFS, the most popular thread is about possibility of WWIII. The second is about Asian girls hair. You can’t make that up.
     
    I used to like Steve Sailer very much, and I still like him. I just cannot understand how neither he nor especially his commenters take this Syria issue seriously. I checked the comments in his Syria threads (there were I think only two), and a relatively large portion of the comments consisted of jingoism and the like. But what astonished me how few comments it got. Apparently no foreign policy minded people are there. One important reason for this was that Steve himself didn’t write anything about it, merely asked for the opinions of the commentariat. Which is strange, but I guess he really doesn’t care for foreign policy.

    I used to like Steve Sailer very much, and I still like him.

    I do, too. If I could, I’d have his bigger pieces compulsorily syndicated to all UK publications claiming to be in any way right of centre. The main reason I don’t post there more often is that he manages the conversations too much, meaning he often postpones approving a comment for a long time if he (presumably) would prefer it not to show up. It means it’s difficult to have any sustained conversation there.

    I also, like you, prefer the foreign policy focus in Anatoly’s community.

    But US domestic policy, culture and politics is unfortunately all of our concern, living within the US sphere, as it affects us directly. Probably more so in the UK than in continental European countries, but even there as well.

    Read More
    • Agree: reiner Tor
    • Replies: @Dmitry
    I don't know how publication works here.

    But on the Sailer forum - he/they never delete my comments and always post them (so thank you for free speech) - eventually. But sometimes they often are approved one or two days after I post them.

    On Karlin forum, my comments are published immediately - unless I edit it
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  116. Mikhail says: • Website
    @peterAUS
    Good article.

    The crux, IMHO, is

    Trump has locked himself into an escalatory cycle. The jihadis now know that all they need to do to provoke geometrically expanding retaliations against Assad is to continue setting up false flag gas attacks. Talk of perverse incentives. As this cycle plays out, the chances of Russian forces entering into hostilities with US and coalition forces will continue to increase.
     
    And I am afraid it won't be

    we are going to be living under the risk of such a development
     
    just re Syria but everywhere along the line of the confrontation.
    Read More
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  117. Mitleser says:
    @Anatoly Karlin
    It's also, as Robin Hanson explained, very unrealistic:

    http://www.overcomingbias.com/2018/02/the-ems-of-altered-carbon.html

    Hanson’s criticism seems a bit questionable.

    While we see characters who seek minor local advantages get away for long times with violating the rule against copying, no one ever tries to do this to get vastly rich, or to win a war. No one even seems aware of the possibility.

    Trying to get vastly rich or winning a war with such means means you can’t stay below the radar.
    Not to mention the destabilizing consequences for society, even if you manage to win.

    Read More
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  118. Dmitry says:
    @Randal

    I used to like Steve Sailer very much, and I still like him.
     
    I do, too. If I could, I'd have his bigger pieces compulsorily syndicated to all UK publications claiming to be in any way right of centre. The main reason I don't post there more often is that he manages the conversations too much, meaning he often postpones approving a comment for a long time if he (presumably) would prefer it not to show up. It means it's difficult to have any sustained conversation there.

    I also, like you, prefer the foreign policy focus in Anatoly's community.

    But US domestic policy, culture and politics is unfortunately all of our concern, living within the US sphere, as it affects us directly. Probably more so in the UK than in continental European countries, but even there as well.

    I don’t know how publication works here.

    But on the Sailer forum – he/they never delete my comments and always post them (so thank you for free speech) – eventually. But sometimes they often are approved one or two days after I post them.

    On Karlin forum, my comments are published immediately – unless I edit it

    Read More
    • Replies: @reiner Tor
    The authors often have some powers.

    Steve Sailer personally moderates his comments. Some people get the privilege of a right to immediately post comments. (I think it helps to send him money and to be a quality commenter with no ad hominem attacks or tasteless things etc.)

    On the Unz Review normally all comments are pre-moderated, and not always by the author. I’m unsure how it works, but I suspect Ron has a moderator, maybe for some salary?

    Anatoly Karlin, on the other hand, asked Ron Unz for no pre-moderation on his site. This actually required some programming on the part of Ron Unz, if I recall correctly, because the site was envisaged with pre-moderated comments only, to avoid spam and trolls. Karlin still has the right to delete or edit comments. If you edit your comments, they will default to pre-moderation. Then either Karlin or the general Unz moderator will approve it. (Sometimes my comments were accepted at a time when I thought Anatoly was sleeping. So I thought it’s not only him even on his own page.)

    The rest of the Unz Review, it’s always pre-moderation.
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  119. Dmitry says:
    @Anatoly Karlin
    Needless to say I don't share utu's fantasies on this score, but to speculate...

    In a nuclear war with Israel, Russia would presumably start off with a counterforce strike.

    As far as I know, most of Israel's nuclear forces are just bombs strapped onto fighters; even if they all somehow survive, they can hardly be expected to penetrate Russian air defenses. At most, a couple will get through to hit Sochi and Krasnodar, if they make it a suicide mission.

    Israel also has subs, which are likely to survive, but the delivery mechanism there is through a short-range cruise missile, not SLBMs. Can't hit any central Russian cities, even if by some miracle they sidle up to the Black Sea coast. Due to limited range of diesel submarines, sending them to the Baltic Sea to hit Saint-Petersburg isn't an option.

    That leaves only the Jericho 3 ICBMs. They will be destroyed, unless Israel launches them really quick (the PM will have only a few minutes to give the order). They would then destroyed any city they're launched again, except Moscow; the A-135 nuclear defense system around Moscow is probably capable of handling that (though a few areas of Moscow oblast will get flattened, with probably a few 10,000's deaths).

    That leaves only the Jericho 3 ICBMs. They will be destroyed, unless Israel launches them really quick

    The bases are underground to the West of Jerusalem.

    They spend a lot of time there (the last 20 years) digging things in this area West of Jerusalem, building nuclear bunkers, tunnels and bases.

    Probably the base where they put the ICBMs is this one.

    https://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/security-aviation/israeli-army-reveals-existence-of-previously-undisclosed-air-force-base-1.5494915

    Read More
    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
    Thanks for the info.

    I just did a quick search and it seems that the missiles are kept in shelters, not silos, and are to be fired from transporter erector launchers (TELs).
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  120. Mikel says:
    @peterAUS

    So it looks like “Team Russia”, as you call them, are not going to show up.
     
    Well, a couple of them, rational types, know what just happened and it's not pretty. "My" side showed power and borderline lunacy. "Their" side showed weakness and statesmanship.
    The only important is what happens next when the same combination gets played out. And neither "side" has anything to be proud of, actually.
    The rest, majority, fanboys, feel they won't be able to satisfy that emotional need with this particular topic.

    It could have been interesting but it may may be better that way. I just saw at Martyanov’s blog how he is taking the Russian MoD version of the Syrian AD systems performance at face value (possibly as silly as doing the same with the Pentagon’s version) and convincing himself that this further reinforces his claims about the huge Russian technological advantage. Not a pretty sight.
     
    Yup.
    Talking about missing the point by a mile.
    It's even worse if those weapons systems are that good, in fact. Go figure.

    All this...."conversation" about the event is actually skewed.

    Instead of acknowledging that something really bad happened majority of "both" sides are just playing this down.
    "Team Russia" because their side showed weakness, "Team USA" because their side showed borderline lunacy.

    Good thing is, who cares really what we here think, feel, write or read.

    I am personally not impressed by the quality of conversation overall on his site. The prime quality, as I said, is the free speech so some things, at least, can be said. The quality of that written down is another matter. Say, could be much better, IMHO.

    Haha...I mean....FFS, the most popular thread is about possibility of WWIII. The second is about Asian girls hair. You can't make that up.

    I've found, overall, all that a bit..........sad.

    People here love to point how delusional the rest of Internet presence is. Well, plenty of delusion here too. And, not enough, in spite of free speech, deep enough quality conversation.

    Overall, disappointing.

    But, at the same time, well, the reality is the reality.
    It is good, in some way, to see that the core behavior we find everywhere else we find here too.
    The power of emotional attachment and investment in particular. Keyword "emotional".
    I've been "trawling" some other sites too. The level of "my team", "your team" is funny.
    One thing that surprised me a bit is how the Cold War feelings still run deep among ex/current military personnel.

    In any case, we'll see more of the same, on the ground, there.
    That's all what matters. Or, what really matters, that things don't escalate into nuclear. All the rest....good.

    And, details wise, there have been some opinions about how Russia should react to all that.
    I still believe that nothing short of significant ground commitment there will make any difference whatsoever. The grind will just go on.
    And, yes, Assad/Russia/the rest will keep winning. They've been winning since Russians got there. One village at the time. Always winning. And winning...and winning..and winning.
    Funny.

    “My” side showed power and borderline lunacy. “Their” side showed weakness and statesmanship.

    A good summary but the statesmanship of the Russian side could perhaps be put into question. On the one hand, ambassadors should be asked to avoid making threats that their leaders are not prepared to deliver. On the other hand, maybe they should have replied to the symbolic attack with some other symbolic gesture. Say, flying one of those formidable weapons over the attackers’ heads?

    As you say, what matters is what comes next. Now that the hawks are in full control in DC, doing nothing and letting your ally on the ground be bombarded can only embolden them further.

    Regarding Sailer, I actually like him very much. He’s a very good and ingenious writer and I don’t remember having ever been in clear disagreement with him. But there’s only so much I can read about “HBD” matters on a given week. I don’t read comments to his posts.

    Unz is the best overall opinion and debate website I know of on the web.

    Read More
    • Replies: @reiner Tor
    The Russians did harass some British vessel:

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5617799/Royal-Navy-submarine-hunted-Russia-cat-mouse-pursuit.html

    It was perhaps unable to shoot its missiles.
    , @peterAUS

    A good summary but the statesmanship of the Russian side could perhaps be put into question. On the one hand, ambassadors should be asked to avoid making threats that their leaders are not prepared to deliver. On the other hand, maybe they should have replied to the symbolic attack with some other symbolic gesture. Say, flying one of those formidable weapons over the attackers’ heads?
     
    Agree on both.
    I believe you make a very good point with the later.

    As for former, it wasn't just the ambassador. Threats were coming from other high ranking officials too.
    But, when you really think about it, doesn't matter much. The majority didn't even register all that.
    The minority which did/does pay attention hasn't changed their previous opinions one bit. Like nothing just happened. And, when you really think about it, well, nothing happened. It's all about perceptions.
    Or, better, the power of emotional investment. Doesn't matter.

    What matters is that The Empire read the regime in Kremlin. The test has been completed. Now they know the opponent.
    I believe that's extremely important.

    We'll see, soon.

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  121. Dmitry says:
    @Randal
    All this talk about a nuclear war between Israel and Russia seems pretty bizarre. Of all the possible nuclear exchanges, it must be one of the least likely. Nuclear weapons are weapons of last resort only, if used against another nuclear power, for obvious reasons, and only usable in the case of an existential threat. Israel has no capability to threaten Russia's existence, and Russia has no present or foreseeably likely reason to threaten Israel's existence.

    A limited conventional war, now that actually seems quite possible at the moment, over Syria. The Israelis do seem to be going out of their way to annoy the Russians in their push to involve the US in Syria and to exercise their supposed right to bomb that country at will. I don't think the Russians were amused by the presumably intentionally provocative April 9th strike, and the Israelis are clearly a lot more upset about the idea of Russia continuing to beef up Syria's air defences than Greasy would have us believe.

    And it has been pointed out that the logical response from Russia to the US bullying its protégé is for Russia to bully the US's regional collaborators. There's not much Israel can do if Russia really does go all out to build Syria's defences up, and if they push too hard and end up killing some Russians they will probably find Russia is a lot more willing to strike back hard that it would be against the US. They might find themselves on the receiving end of some of Russia's pent up frustration at the US's behaviour.

    I don't know about you, but the Russian version of the results of the missile attacks is looking increasingly more plausible that the US one. It just doesn't seem credible that the US would have fired 76 Tomahawks and jassms at the tiny Barzeh complex, and Russia's breakdown of the results should be pretty concerning for Israel:

    The military spokesman said that the Syrian Air Defense Forces had used 112 surface-to-air missiles, including 25 Pansir missiles, to counter the US-led strike:
    ◾Buk sytems: 29 missiles were fired – 24 targets were hit;
    ◾Osa systems: 11 missiles were fired – 5 targets were hit;
    ◾S-125 systems: 13 missiles were fired – 5 targets were hit;
    ◾Strela-10 systems: 5 missiles were fired – 3 targets were hit;
    ◾Kvadrat systems: 21 missiles were fired – 11 targets were hit;
    ◾S-200 sysetms: 8 missiles were fired – no targets were hit;
    ◾Pantsir-S1 systems: 25 missiles were fired – 23 targets were hit;

    Konashenkov explained a poor performance of the S-200 system by the fact that it had been used in an attempt to hit aircraft.
     
    https://southfront.org/syrian-forces-launched-112-surface-to-air-missiles-to-repel-us-led-strike-russian-military/

    Suggests a pretty good close in defence performance by Pantsir.

    Presumably this level of success reflects considerable involvement of Russian intel in informing the Syrians of the approaching missiles, but it does suggest Syria could use beefed up systems effectively with Russian support.

    War between Russia and Israel is about as likely as war between Russia and Turkey – i.e. not likely (unless there is some sudden change of leaders at the Kremlin).

    You can see the official view from the television. 15 years ago, television channels were anti-Israel. Whereas nowadays, there is a change in the official view – which became very balanced and always tries to include the Israel official view in the report (e.g. watch Sergey Pashkov reports)

    The official ideology nowadays seems for Russia’s role in the Middle East, is a kind of fair-minded, neutral protectors and moderators of all the different colourful people of the Middle East. Like some noble teacher who breaks up the argument between children in the school playground.

    Of course this all ‘goes out the window’ whenever the subject of America is mentioned.

    And of course this is some kind of ‘white man’s burden’ (from the famous English poet) viewpoint, and probably not related to real, more cynical reasons, for the limited intervention in the region.

    Read More
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  122. @Mikel

    “My” side showed power and borderline lunacy. “Their” side showed weakness and statesmanship.
     
    A good summary but the statesmanship of the Russian side could perhaps be put into question. On the one hand, ambassadors should be asked to avoid making threats that their leaders are not prepared to deliver. On the other hand, maybe they should have replied to the symbolic attack with some other symbolic gesture. Say, flying one of those formidable weapons over the attackers' heads?

    As you say, what matters is what comes next. Now that the hawks are in full control in DC, doing nothing and letting your ally on the ground be bombarded can only embolden them further.

    Regarding Sailer, I actually like him very much. He's a very good and ingenious writer and I don't remember having ever been in clear disagreement with him. But there's only so much I can read about "HBD" matters on a given week. I don't read comments to his posts.

    Unz is the best overall opinion and debate website I know of on the web.

    The Russians did harass some British vessel:

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5617799/Royal-Navy-submarine-hunted-Russia-cat-mouse-pursuit.html

    It was perhaps unable to shoot its missiles.

    Read More
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  123. peterAUS says:
    @reiner Tor

    Haha…I mean….FFS, the most popular thread is about possibility of WWIII. The second is about Asian girls hair. You can’t make that up.
     
    I used to like Steve Sailer very much, and I still like him. I just cannot understand how neither he nor especially his commenters take this Syria issue seriously. I checked the comments in his Syria threads (there were I think only two), and a relatively large portion of the comments consisted of jingoism and the like. But what astonished me how few comments it got. Apparently no foreign policy minded people are there. One important reason for this was that Steve himself didn’t write anything about it, merely asked for the opinions of the commentariat. Which is strange, but I guess he really doesn’t care for foreign policy.

    I’ve taken two points from this exercise (bombing).

    The first is that a majority does not care. Just does not care.
    Why, for me, does not matter.
    That, though, points to a deeper truth about people, society, politics etc.
    All the rest we see and face today, and will in future, is the result of that fact.

    Second is that the regime in Kremlin will keep backing up whenever pushed.
    Its strategy is buying time for themselves, first and foremost. In plain language, enjoy while it lasts.
    All the rest we’ll see between The Empire and Russia will be the result of that fact.
    Maybe Kremlin is correct. The Empire will implode.
    Maybe it will be other way around. The Empire will swallow the Russia, whole or in parts.
    I’d go 30/70 there.
    Of course, miracles do happen. We’ll see.

    Read More
    • Replies: @reiner Tor

    Second is that the regime in Kremlin will keep backing up whenever pushed.
     
    But is it true? Let me give you two examples.

    One is Munich. Hitler didn’t think the French and the British were going to fight. Because they folded in Munich, and then they didn’t do anything when he occupied rump Czechia, even though they guaranteed its independence. He wasn’t entirely incorrect: the French and the British didn’t do much at first, but eventually kept fighting until decisively defeated on the battlefield (France) or until Hitler himself was defeated (the UK). So it was a bad miscalculation. The belief that the Russians will keep folding could eventually turn out to be a similar miscalculation.

    The other example is Cuba. The Americans decided that if the Soviets shot down a U2, they’d storm the island. The Soviets shot a plane. Though they didn’t want to: the local air defense commander actually did it without proper authorization. The Soviets didn’t authorize it because they correctly thought that it would lead to war. But the plane was shot anyway because of a hotheaded air defense commander. The Americans then changed their minds, because they thought that maybe the Soviet commander did it without authorization. They then told the Soviets that they were willing to overlook it this time, but next time there really would be a war.

    So, folding once doesn’t necessarily mean that they’ll fold again.

    Then the American attack was pretty feeble. They spent the vast majority of the ammo on an empty building. They also gave ample forewarning. Basically, they didn’t do what they promised to do. (Which was a much bigger attack than last year. For all practical purposes it was smaller - no real military targets attacked if the Americans said the truth, and however it was, unlike last year they gave ample forewarning.) In a sense, the Americans also folded. They promised more than what they did.

    The Cuba crisis provides another lesson. Neither side truly wanted a war. Both sides understood that shooting down a U2 would result in a war. The Soviets didn’t authorize it. But it happened anyway. If there’s another standoff, and then another, and yet more, maybe the Russians will always fold. I mean, maybe they will always want to fold. But screwups are bound to happen. Trigger-happy commanders do exist. Especially after several rounds of humiliation and being ordered to stand down, some commanders and soldiers will be all too eager to show them... Eventually, the Russians might initiate a war despite (their top leadership) not wanting to.
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  124. Talha says:
    @dfordoom

    I recently watched Altered Carbon on Netflix (my sister’s account) which was decent sci-fi, but also quite pozzed.
     
    If it's pozzed don't pay for it. You're just encouraging more poz.

    You’re just encouraging more poz.

    Starve the poz.

    Do it legally, by the book:

    “To leave Egypt or not leave…After my first video which was about homosexuality i lost almost all of my relatives including my mother and siblings. No one wanted to talk to me. But i kept going.”

    https://sherifgaber.org/en/2709/

    Anybody want to give this guy asylum? Looks like Egypt doesn’t want the poz. Looks like he’s looking at a minimum of 5 years. I think that is pretty harsh for first time; public flogging or fine is probably a better first option.

    We’ll throw in the ability for you guys to call us backwards and lecture us about human rights…c’mon, you know you want to…

    Peace.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Randal

    We’ll throw in the ability for you guys to call us backwards and lecture us about human rights…c’mon, you know you want to…
     
    Egypt is another nation, it's up to them to decide whether and to what extent a man has a right to freedom of speech in their country. If they aren't up for principled freedom of speech then putting the hammer on advocates of homosexual behaviour is a damned good idea, certainly. You can see where not doing so got the countries of the US sphere.

    For my own country, and the countries we are necessarily shackled to (US and Europe) I want as complete freedom of speech as possible because I certainly don't trust government or the lobbyists it enables to suppress the right speech, and because it is in practice the best way to get to the truth of issues. And if we have to put up with being lectured about human rights then we can at least point out the hypocrisy of their claiming to believe in freedom of speech whilst denying it to their own dissidents. If a man has a right to basic liberty then freedom of speech is part of that. Spurious "rights" to do with coercing others to respect him or his race or religion are in direct conflict with liberty.

    Mind you, our own experience with it of leftists using it as a ploy to exercise their own freedom of speech in order to subvert and destroy establishment defences until they gained power, and now denying it in order to suppress dissent against their own ideological dominance, means it's hard to really criticise those in other countries who don't want to travel the same route. Let them blaspheme against your established religion all you like, once they get to wear the jackboots you can be sure they won't be letting you get away with offending their specially protected minorities or outraging against their sacred dogmas.
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  125. peterAUS says:
    @Mikel

    “My” side showed power and borderline lunacy. “Their” side showed weakness and statesmanship.
     
    A good summary but the statesmanship of the Russian side could perhaps be put into question. On the one hand, ambassadors should be asked to avoid making threats that their leaders are not prepared to deliver. On the other hand, maybe they should have replied to the symbolic attack with some other symbolic gesture. Say, flying one of those formidable weapons over the attackers' heads?

    As you say, what matters is what comes next. Now that the hawks are in full control in DC, doing nothing and letting your ally on the ground be bombarded can only embolden them further.

    Regarding Sailer, I actually like him very much. He's a very good and ingenious writer and I don't remember having ever been in clear disagreement with him. But there's only so much I can read about "HBD" matters on a given week. I don't read comments to his posts.

    Unz is the best overall opinion and debate website I know of on the web.

    A good summary but the statesmanship of the Russian side could perhaps be put into question. On the one hand, ambassadors should be asked to avoid making threats that their leaders are not prepared to deliver. On the other hand, maybe they should have replied to the symbolic attack with some other symbolic gesture. Say, flying one of those formidable weapons over the attackers’ heads?

    Agree on both.
    I believe you make a very good point with the later.

    As for former, it wasn’t just the ambassador. Threats were coming from other high ranking officials too.
    But, when you really think about it, doesn’t matter much. The majority didn’t even register all that.
    The minority which did/does pay attention hasn’t changed their previous opinions one bit. Like nothing just happened. And, when you really think about it, well, nothing happened. It’s all about perceptions.
    Or, better, the power of emotional investment. Doesn’t matter.

    What matters is that The Empire read the regime in Kremlin. The test has been completed. Now they know the opponent.
    I believe that’s extremely important.

    We’ll see, soon.

    Read More
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  126. @peterAUS
    I've taken two points from this exercise (bombing).

    The first is that a majority does not care. Just does not care.
    Why, for me, does not matter.
    That, though, points to a deeper truth about people, society, politics etc.
    All the rest we see and face today, and will in future, is the result of that fact.

    Second is that the regime in Kremlin will keep backing up whenever pushed.
    Its strategy is buying time for themselves, first and foremost. In plain language, enjoy while it lasts.
    All the rest we'll see between The Empire and Russia will be the result of that fact.
    Maybe Kremlin is correct. The Empire will implode.
    Maybe it will be other way around. The Empire will swallow the Russia, whole or in parts.
    I'd go 30/70 there.
    Of course, miracles do happen. We'll see.

    Second is that the regime in Kremlin will keep backing up whenever pushed.

    But is it true? Let me give you two examples.

    One is Munich. Hitler didn’t think the French and the British were going to fight. Because they folded in Munich, and then they didn’t do anything when he occupied rump Czechia, even though they guaranteed its independence. He wasn’t entirely incorrect: the French and the British didn’t do much at first, but eventually kept fighting until decisively defeated on the battlefield (France) or until Hitler himself was defeated (the UK). So it was a bad miscalculation. The belief that the Russians will keep folding could eventually turn out to be a similar miscalculation.

    The other example is Cuba. The Americans decided that if the Soviets shot down a U2, they’d storm the island. The Soviets shot a plane. Though they didn’t want to: the local air defense commander actually did it without proper authorization. The Soviets didn’t authorize it because they correctly thought that it would lead to war. But the plane was shot anyway because of a hotheaded air defense commander. The Americans then changed their minds, because they thought that maybe the Soviet commander did it without authorization. They then told the Soviets that they were willing to overlook it this time, but next time there really would be a war.

    So, folding once doesn’t necessarily mean that they’ll fold again.

    Then the American attack was pretty feeble. They spent the vast majority of the ammo on an empty building. They also gave ample forewarning. Basically, they didn’t do what they promised to do. (Which was a much bigger attack than last year. For all practical purposes it was smaller – no real military targets attacked if the Americans said the truth, and however it was, unlike last year they gave ample forewarning.) In a sense, the Americans also folded. They promised more than what they did.

    The Cuba crisis provides another lesson. Neither side truly wanted a war. Both sides understood that shooting down a U2 would result in a war. The Soviets didn’t authorize it. But it happened anyway. If there’s another standoff, and then another, and yet more, maybe the Russians will always fold. I mean, maybe they will always want to fold. But screwups are bound to happen. Trigger-happy commanders do exist. Especially after several rounds of humiliation and being ordered to stand down, some commanders and soldiers will be all too eager to show them… Eventually, the Russians might initiate a war despite (their top leadership) not wanting to.

    Read More
    • Replies: @peterAUS

    But is it true?
     
    I believe so. You, apparently, don't.
    O.K.

    Let me give you two examples.
     
    Bad examples.
    Hint:
    Nazi ideology vs Communist ideology.
    Communist ideology vs Capitalist ideology.
    Ideology.
    No such dispute here.

    Maybe you could approach this as:
    People desperately need something to face The Empire. Something, anything.........
    "I want to believe".
    Russia could be that. Or China. Or...whatever.
    My point is, they are not.

    They are junior players in the same game.
    True, there are always things as hope and miracle.
    I don't buy much any of that in Kremlin, case. Some, but not much.

    China could be a different matter.
    Could, not necessarily will.
    , @Randal

    They spent the vast majority of the ammo on an empty building.
     
    Do you actually believe this, then? As I've noted before, I'm very sceptical of the US version, in particular because aiming 76 missiles at the Barzeh "complex" seems ludicrously implausible.

    That doesn't mean the Russian version is correct of course (I'm open minded on that), and in any case it doesn't change the thrust of your point because for whatever reason the US sphere attack is generally recognised as having been ineffectual.


    The Cuba crisis provides another lesson. Neither side truly wanted a war. Both sides understood that shooting down a U2 would result in a war. The Soviets didn’t authorize it. But it happened anyway. If there’s another standoff, and then another, and yet more, maybe the Russians will always fold. I mean, maybe they will always want to fold. But screwups are bound to happen. Trigger-happy commanders do exist.
     
    This is why I maintain the White House played Russian Roulette and pulled the trigger on a empty chamber - this time.
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  127. @Dmitry
    I don't know how publication works here.

    But on the Sailer forum - he/they never delete my comments and always post them (so thank you for free speech) - eventually. But sometimes they often are approved one or two days after I post them.

    On Karlin forum, my comments are published immediately - unless I edit it

    The authors often have some powers.

    Steve Sailer personally moderates his comments. Some people get the privilege of a right to immediately post comments. (I think it helps to send him money and to be a quality commenter with no ad hominem attacks or tasteless things etc.)

    On the Unz Review normally all comments are pre-moderated, and not always by the author. I’m unsure how it works, but I suspect Ron has a moderator, maybe for some salary?

    Anatoly Karlin, on the other hand, asked Ron Unz for no pre-moderation on his site. This actually required some programming on the part of Ron Unz, if I recall correctly, because the site was envisaged with pre-moderated comments only, to avoid spam and trolls. Karlin still has the right to delete or edit comments. If you edit your comments, they will default to pre-moderation. Then either Karlin or the general Unz moderator will approve it. (Sometimes my comments were accepted at a time when I thought Anatoly was sleeping. So I thought it’s not only him even on his own page.)

    The rest of the Unz Review, it’s always pre-moderation.

    Read More
    • Agree: Anatoly Karlin
    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
    Almost entirely correct.

    I think edited comments here get approved automatically, just not immediately. Old versions of edited comments appear in my trash folder, which I clean out every few days.

    I can't answer your question on columnist moderation. I think they have at least some input - at any rate I recall JayMan banning some people.

    I don't want to have pre-moderation on my site because it breaks the flow of the conversation and, more importantly, I don't want to have to be on this site several times a day just clicking on the approve button.
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  128. peterAUS says:
    @reiner Tor

    Second is that the regime in Kremlin will keep backing up whenever pushed.
     
    But is it true? Let me give you two examples.

    One is Munich. Hitler didn’t think the French and the British were going to fight. Because they folded in Munich, and then they didn’t do anything when he occupied rump Czechia, even though they guaranteed its independence. He wasn’t entirely incorrect: the French and the British didn’t do much at first, but eventually kept fighting until decisively defeated on the battlefield (France) or until Hitler himself was defeated (the UK). So it was a bad miscalculation. The belief that the Russians will keep folding could eventually turn out to be a similar miscalculation.

    The other example is Cuba. The Americans decided that if the Soviets shot down a U2, they’d storm the island. The Soviets shot a plane. Though they didn’t want to: the local air defense commander actually did it without proper authorization. The Soviets didn’t authorize it because they correctly thought that it would lead to war. But the plane was shot anyway because of a hotheaded air defense commander. The Americans then changed their minds, because they thought that maybe the Soviet commander did it without authorization. They then told the Soviets that they were willing to overlook it this time, but next time there really would be a war.

    So, folding once doesn’t necessarily mean that they’ll fold again.

    Then the American attack was pretty feeble. They spent the vast majority of the ammo on an empty building. They also gave ample forewarning. Basically, they didn’t do what they promised to do. (Which was a much bigger attack than last year. For all practical purposes it was smaller - no real military targets attacked if the Americans said the truth, and however it was, unlike last year they gave ample forewarning.) In a sense, the Americans also folded. They promised more than what they did.

    The Cuba crisis provides another lesson. Neither side truly wanted a war. Both sides understood that shooting down a U2 would result in a war. The Soviets didn’t authorize it. But it happened anyway. If there’s another standoff, and then another, and yet more, maybe the Russians will always fold. I mean, maybe they will always want to fold. But screwups are bound to happen. Trigger-happy commanders do exist. Especially after several rounds of humiliation and being ordered to stand down, some commanders and soldiers will be all too eager to show them... Eventually, the Russians might initiate a war despite (their top leadership) not wanting to.

    But is it true?

    I believe so. You, apparently, don’t.
    O.K.

    Let me give you two examples.

    Bad examples.
    Hint:
    Nazi ideology vs Communist ideology.
    Communist ideology vs Capitalist ideology.
    Ideology.
    No such dispute here.

    Maybe you could approach this as:
    People desperately need something to face The Empire. Something, anything………
    “I want to believe”.
    Russia could be that. Or China. Or…whatever.
    My point is, they are not.

    They are junior players in the same game.
    True, there are always things as hope and miracle.
    I don’t buy much any of that in Kremlin, case. Some, but not much.

    China could be a different matter.
    Could, not necessarily will.

    Read More
    • Replies: @reiner Tor

    Bad examples.
    Hint:
    Nazi ideology vs Communist ideology.
     
    I used the example of France and the UK choosing to fight in 1939, after having folded multiple times before. (German rearmament crisis, Rhein remilitarization crisis, Sudetenland crisis, the occupation of rump Czechia...)

    The fact that you start talking about communist ideology (which has nothing to do with my example) raises my suspicion that you didn’t seriously consider my example, or even carefully read it.

    People desperately need something to face The Empire. Something, anything………
    “I want to believe”.
     
    You changed the topic from what could be expected of Russia to my motivations. (Or the motivations of “people.”)

    Let’s just assume that I’m a delusional idiot incapable of a coherent thought. Fortunately it’s totally irrelevant to whether Russia will always fold or not.
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  129. Randal says:
    @reiner Tor

    Second is that the regime in Kremlin will keep backing up whenever pushed.
     
    But is it true? Let me give you two examples.

    One is Munich. Hitler didn’t think the French and the British were going to fight. Because they folded in Munich, and then they didn’t do anything when he occupied rump Czechia, even though they guaranteed its independence. He wasn’t entirely incorrect: the French and the British didn’t do much at first, but eventually kept fighting until decisively defeated on the battlefield (France) or until Hitler himself was defeated (the UK). So it was a bad miscalculation. The belief that the Russians will keep folding could eventually turn out to be a similar miscalculation.

    The other example is Cuba. The Americans decided that if the Soviets shot down a U2, they’d storm the island. The Soviets shot a plane. Though they didn’t want to: the local air defense commander actually did it without proper authorization. The Soviets didn’t authorize it because they correctly thought that it would lead to war. But the plane was shot anyway because of a hotheaded air defense commander. The Americans then changed their minds, because they thought that maybe the Soviet commander did it without authorization. They then told the Soviets that they were willing to overlook it this time, but next time there really would be a war.

    So, folding once doesn’t necessarily mean that they’ll fold again.

    Then the American attack was pretty feeble. They spent the vast majority of the ammo on an empty building. They also gave ample forewarning. Basically, they didn’t do what they promised to do. (Which was a much bigger attack than last year. For all practical purposes it was smaller - no real military targets attacked if the Americans said the truth, and however it was, unlike last year they gave ample forewarning.) In a sense, the Americans also folded. They promised more than what they did.

    The Cuba crisis provides another lesson. Neither side truly wanted a war. Both sides understood that shooting down a U2 would result in a war. The Soviets didn’t authorize it. But it happened anyway. If there’s another standoff, and then another, and yet more, maybe the Russians will always fold. I mean, maybe they will always want to fold. But screwups are bound to happen. Trigger-happy commanders do exist. Especially after several rounds of humiliation and being ordered to stand down, some commanders and soldiers will be all too eager to show them... Eventually, the Russians might initiate a war despite (their top leadership) not wanting to.

    They spent the vast majority of the ammo on an empty building.

    Do you actually believe this, then? As I’ve noted before, I’m very sceptical of the US version, in particular because aiming 76 missiles at the Barzeh “complex” seems ludicrously implausible.

    That doesn’t mean the Russian version is correct of course (I’m open minded on that), and in any case it doesn’t change the thrust of your point because for whatever reason the US sphere attack is generally recognised as having been ineffectual.

    The Cuba crisis provides another lesson. Neither side truly wanted a war. Both sides understood that shooting down a U2 would result in a war. The Soviets didn’t authorize it. But it happened anyway. If there’s another standoff, and then another, and yet more, maybe the Russians will always fold. I mean, maybe they will always want to fold. But screwups are bound to happen. Trigger-happy commanders do exist.

    This is why I maintain the White House played Russian Roulette and pulled the trigger on a empty chamber – this time.

    Read More
    • Replies: @reiner Tor

    Do you actually believe this, then? As I’ve noted before, I’m very sceptical of the US version, in particular because aiming 76 missiles at the Barzeh “complex” seems ludicrously implausible.
     
    I’m agnostic.

    If we accept the American version then they certainly spent the vast majority of their missiles on an empty building. After much haggling about the targets with the Russians. They certainly folded and didn’t dare follow through with their promises of “serious consequences” or “bigger attack than the last time” - it was only nominally bigger than last time, when it actually did cause some (minimal, but still) damage to the Syrian military.

    If we accept the Russian version of events, then the attack was marginally larger than last year (only marginally, because 30 missiles still went to the empty building), but again, after much haggling and forewarning (unlike last year, when they gave much shorter notice), and against a beefed up air defense. So in reality it was less effective, and caused less damage. Are these the “big consequences”? They didn’t dare launch a truly large scale attack. And when the majority of the missiles were taken down, they just let it there.

    And let’s not forget that in the Russian version the Russian weapons systems performed very well.
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  130. Randal says:
    @Talha

    You’re just encouraging more poz.
     
    Starve the poz.

    Do it legally, by the book:
    https://twitter.com/Mr_SherifGaber/status/983729481859944448

    "To leave Egypt or not leave...After my first video which was about homosexuality i lost almost all of my relatives including my mother and siblings. No one wanted to talk to me. But i kept going."
    https://sherifgaber.org/en/2709/

    Anybody want to give this guy asylum? Looks like Egypt doesn't want the poz. Looks like he's looking at a minimum of 5 years. I think that is pretty harsh for first time; public flogging or fine is probably a better first option.

    We'll throw in the ability for you guys to call us backwards and lecture us about human rights...c'mon, you know you want to...

    Peace.

    We’ll throw in the ability for you guys to call us backwards and lecture us about human rights…c’mon, you know you want to…

    Egypt is another nation, it’s up to them to decide whether and to what extent a man has a right to freedom of speech in their country. If they aren’t up for principled freedom of speech then putting the hammer on advocates of homosexual behaviour is a damned good idea, certainly. You can see where not doing so got the countries of the US sphere.

    For my own country, and the countries we are necessarily shackled to (US and Europe) I want as complete freedom of speech as possible because I certainly don’t trust government or the lobbyists it enables to suppress the right speech, and because it is in practice the best way to get to the truth of issues. And if we have to put up with being lectured about human rights then we can at least point out the hypocrisy of their claiming to believe in freedom of speech whilst denying it to their own dissidents. If a man has a right to basic liberty then freedom of speech is part of that. Spurious “rights” to do with coercing others to respect him or his race or religion are in direct conflict with liberty.

    Mind you, our own experience with it of leftists using it as a ploy to exercise their own freedom of speech in order to subvert and destroy establishment defences until they gained power, and now denying it in order to suppress dissent against their own ideological dominance, means it’s hard to really criticise those in other countries who don’t want to travel the same route. Let them blaspheme against your established religion all you like, once they get to wear the jackboots you can be sure they won’t be letting you get away with offending their specially protected minorities or outraging against their sacred dogmas.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Talha

    And if we have to put up with being lectured about human rights then we can at least point out the hypocrisy of their claiming to believe in freedom of speech whilst denying it to their own dissidents.
     
    I think that's probably the sound approach at this point if you've lost the upper hand. You're back at the Makkah phase at this point, not much you can do except spread your message to see if you can turn the populace to side with you.

    means it’s hard to really criticise those in other countries who don’t want to travel the same route.
     
    That's the thing - many traditional Muslims like myself are horrified at what the Left has been able to do in the West - I mean, complete dismantling of much of the traditional culture, values, the institution of the family is a wreck...
    https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/10172627/Most-children-will-be-born-out-of-wedlock-by-2016.html

    We've definitely got issues in Muslim countries, but I don't know if there is a recovery from what the West is plunging into. Looks like Russia won't allow full-fledged free speech when it comes to certain thresholds either - to the consternation of Western nations.
    http://assets.pewresearch.org/wp-content/uploads/sites/12/2016/07/FT_16.08.01_restrictions_blasphemy640px.png

    It seems caging the tiger when it is young and manageable is preferable to trying to cage when it's fully grown and dangerous.

    Once you are over trying to make everyone happy with you and just brush off the criticism, then you can seriously deal with the issues with a long-term future in mind. Otherwise you are always playing defense and trying not to lose further and further ground to those who really aren't grounded in a very future-oriented framework. It is a shame what has happened to many of the social institutions of the West, but we are learning lessons from it.


    once they get to wear the jackboots
     
    Exactly. The thing is, the Muslim world already had secularism forced down our throats over the 50s-80s, it was really in the 90s that many places started to swing back. The thing is, how do you see it coming when it is couched in the language of freedom and human rights? And the jackboots are well hidden under the pink bell bottom pants. If you don't have certain lines that one simply cannot cross, where does the compromise end?

    Peace.

    , @dfordoom

    then putting the hammer on advocates of homosexual behaviour is a damned good idea, certainly. You can see where not doing so got the countries of the US sphere.
     
    Exactly. The best way to avoid the dangers of a slippery slope is not to start on that slippery slope in the first place. If the Egyptians are smart they'll bring down the hammer as hard as possible.

    Mind you, our own experience with it of leftists using it as a ploy to exercise their own freedom of speech in order to subvert and destroy establishment defences until they gained power, and now denying it in order to suppress dissent against their own ideological dominance, means it’s hard to really criticise those in other countries who don’t want to travel the same route.
     
    Yep. Freedom of speech is a lovely idea but on the whole I think it's done a lot more harm than good.

    The best advice for the leaders of any country is to study what governments in places like the US and Britain have done, and then do the complete opposite.
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  131. @peterAUS

    But is it true?
     
    I believe so. You, apparently, don't.
    O.K.

    Let me give you two examples.
     
    Bad examples.
    Hint:
    Nazi ideology vs Communist ideology.
    Communist ideology vs Capitalist ideology.
    Ideology.
    No such dispute here.

    Maybe you could approach this as:
    People desperately need something to face The Empire. Something, anything.........
    "I want to believe".
    Russia could be that. Or China. Or...whatever.
    My point is, they are not.

    They are junior players in the same game.
    True, there are always things as hope and miracle.
    I don't buy much any of that in Kremlin, case. Some, but not much.

    China could be a different matter.
    Could, not necessarily will.

    Bad examples.
    Hint:
    Nazi ideology vs Communist ideology.

    I used the example of France and the UK choosing to fight in 1939, after having folded multiple times before. (German rearmament crisis, Rhein remilitarization crisis, Sudetenland crisis, the occupation of rump Czechia…)

    The fact that you start talking about communist ideology (which has nothing to do with my example) raises my suspicion that you didn’t seriously consider my example, or even carefully read it.

    People desperately need something to face The Empire. Something, anything………
    “I want to believe”.

    You changed the topic from what could be expected of Russia to my motivations. (Or the motivations of “people.”)

    Let’s just assume that I’m a delusional idiot incapable of a coherent thought. Fortunately it’s totally irrelevant to whether Russia will always fold or not.

    Read More
    • Replies: @peterAUS
    I'd change this:

    Let’s just assume that I’m a delusional idiot incapable of a coherent thought.
     
    into:
    Let’s just assume that most people fed up with The Empire are desperate to find something...anything...to face up and, hopefully, put the end to its onslaught.
    They want to see Russia, China or any combination of those two as that "something/anything".
    That desire clouds their perceptions and judgement.

    This case is perfect example.
    Endless excuses, endless rationalizations of Russian lack of performance in Syria.
    The gap between what was said/promised and what was delivered can't be seen, analyzed, understood...accepted and, the most important, used.
    Awesome weapons systems; the iron will of the grand multidimensional chess master; the...blah...blah...

    And the hope that the next time it will, finally, be done right.
    Somebody will, at last, put The Empire in its place.
    And the next. And the next.....
    "I want to believe".

    Good.
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  132. @Randal

    They spent the vast majority of the ammo on an empty building.
     
    Do you actually believe this, then? As I've noted before, I'm very sceptical of the US version, in particular because aiming 76 missiles at the Barzeh "complex" seems ludicrously implausible.

    That doesn't mean the Russian version is correct of course (I'm open minded on that), and in any case it doesn't change the thrust of your point because for whatever reason the US sphere attack is generally recognised as having been ineffectual.


    The Cuba crisis provides another lesson. Neither side truly wanted a war. Both sides understood that shooting down a U2 would result in a war. The Soviets didn’t authorize it. But it happened anyway. If there’s another standoff, and then another, and yet more, maybe the Russians will always fold. I mean, maybe they will always want to fold. But screwups are bound to happen. Trigger-happy commanders do exist.
     
    This is why I maintain the White House played Russian Roulette and pulled the trigger on a empty chamber - this time.

    Do you actually believe this, then? As I’ve noted before, I’m very sceptical of the US version, in particular because aiming 76 missiles at the Barzeh “complex” seems ludicrously implausible.

    I’m agnostic.

    If we accept the American version then they certainly spent the vast majority of their missiles on an empty building. After much haggling about the targets with the Russians. They certainly folded and didn’t dare follow through with their promises of “serious consequences” or “bigger attack than the last time” – it was only nominally bigger than last time, when it actually did cause some (minimal, but still) damage to the Syrian military.

    If we accept the Russian version of events, then the attack was marginally larger than last year (only marginally, because 30 missiles still went to the empty building), but again, after much haggling and forewarning (unlike last year, when they gave much shorter notice), and against a beefed up air defense. So in reality it was less effective, and caused less damage. Are these the “big consequences”? They didn’t dare launch a truly large scale attack. And when the majority of the missiles were taken down, they just let it there.

    And let’s not forget that in the Russian version the Russian weapons systems performed very well.

    Read More
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  133. Talha says:
    @Randal

    We’ll throw in the ability for you guys to call us backwards and lecture us about human rights…c’mon, you know you want to…
     
    Egypt is another nation, it's up to them to decide whether and to what extent a man has a right to freedom of speech in their country. If they aren't up for principled freedom of speech then putting the hammer on advocates of homosexual behaviour is a damned good idea, certainly. You can see where not doing so got the countries of the US sphere.

    For my own country, and the countries we are necessarily shackled to (US and Europe) I want as complete freedom of speech as possible because I certainly don't trust government or the lobbyists it enables to suppress the right speech, and because it is in practice the best way to get to the truth of issues. And if we have to put up with being lectured about human rights then we can at least point out the hypocrisy of their claiming to believe in freedom of speech whilst denying it to their own dissidents. If a man has a right to basic liberty then freedom of speech is part of that. Spurious "rights" to do with coercing others to respect him or his race or religion are in direct conflict with liberty.

    Mind you, our own experience with it of leftists using it as a ploy to exercise their own freedom of speech in order to subvert and destroy establishment defences until they gained power, and now denying it in order to suppress dissent against their own ideological dominance, means it's hard to really criticise those in other countries who don't want to travel the same route. Let them blaspheme against your established religion all you like, once they get to wear the jackboots you can be sure they won't be letting you get away with offending their specially protected minorities or outraging against their sacred dogmas.

    And if we have to put up with being lectured about human rights then we can at least point out the hypocrisy of their claiming to believe in freedom of speech whilst denying it to their own dissidents.

    I think that’s probably the sound approach at this point if you’ve lost the upper hand. You’re back at the Makkah phase at this point, not much you can do except spread your message to see if you can turn the populace to side with you.

    means it’s hard to really criticise those in other countries who don’t want to travel the same route.

    That’s the thing – many traditional Muslims like myself are horrified at what the Left has been able to do in the West – I mean, complete dismantling of much of the traditional culture, values, the institution of the family is a wreck…

    https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/10172627/Most-children-will-be-born-out-of-wedlock-by-2016.html

    We’ve definitely got issues in Muslim countries, but I don’t know if there is a recovery from what the West is plunging into. Looks like Russia won’t allow full-fledged free speech when it comes to certain thresholds either – to the consternation of Western nations.
    It seems caging the tiger when it is young and manageable is preferable to trying to cage when it’s fully grown and dangerous.

    Once you are over trying to make everyone happy with you and just brush off the criticism, then you can seriously deal with the issues with a long-term future in mind. Otherwise you are always playing defense and trying not to lose further and further ground to those who really aren’t grounded in a very future-oriented framework. It is a shame what has happened to many of the social institutions of the West, but we are learning lessons from it.

    once they get to wear the jackboots

    Exactly. The thing is, the Muslim world already had secularism forced down our throats over the 50s-80s, it was really in the 90s that many places started to swing back. The thing is, how do you see it coming when it is couched in the language of freedom and human rights? And the jackboots are well hidden under the pink bell bottom pants. If you don’t have certain lines that one simply cannot cross, where does the compromise end?

    Peace.

    Read More
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  134. Anon[198] • Disclaimer says:
    @Talha

    The_Donald has become an echo chamber for his personality cult.
     
    Pffffshshshwahahahaha - and you guys want us to jump on this "democracy" band wagon??!! At least we know that our trains were wrecked by people who took the key and stuffed us into the cattle-car.

    You guys handed over the keys freely for your train wreck! Joke!

    Peace.

    Pffffshshshwahahahaha – and you guys want us to jump on this “democracy” band wagon??!!

    Chicago is not a democracy?

    Read More
    • Replies: @Talha
    Chicago is a Muslim land?

    Peace.
    , @Joe Stalin
    It would be appropriate to call Chicago a "single party state," where your actual choice is between Democrats running in the primary.
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  135. Talha says:
    @Anon

    Pffffshshshwahahahaha – and you guys want us to jump on this “democracy” band wagon??!!
     
    Chicago is not a democracy?

    Chicago is a Muslim land?

    Peace.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Anon
    I'd say you've already jumped on the Chicago bandwagon, though.

    Though given the city perhaps paddy-wagon is a better metaphor.
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  136. peterAUS says:
    @reiner Tor

    Bad examples.
    Hint:
    Nazi ideology vs Communist ideology.
     
    I used the example of France and the UK choosing to fight in 1939, after having folded multiple times before. (German rearmament crisis, Rhein remilitarization crisis, Sudetenland crisis, the occupation of rump Czechia...)

    The fact that you start talking about communist ideology (which has nothing to do with my example) raises my suspicion that you didn’t seriously consider my example, or even carefully read it.

    People desperately need something to face The Empire. Something, anything………
    “I want to believe”.
     
    You changed the topic from what could be expected of Russia to my motivations. (Or the motivations of “people.”)

    Let’s just assume that I’m a delusional idiot incapable of a coherent thought. Fortunately it’s totally irrelevant to whether Russia will always fold or not.

    I’d change this:

    Let’s just assume that I’m a delusional idiot incapable of a coherent thought.

    into:
    Let’s just assume that most people fed up with The Empire are desperate to find something…anything…to face up and, hopefully, put the end to its onslaught.
    They want to see Russia, China or any combination of those two as that “something/anything”.
    That desire clouds their perceptions and judgement.

    This case is perfect example.
    Endless excuses, endless rationalizations of Russian lack of performance in Syria.
    The gap between what was said/promised and what was delivered can’t be seen, analyzed, understood…accepted and, the most important, used.
    Awesome weapons systems; the iron will of the grand multidimensional chess master; the…blah…blah…

    And the hope that the next time it will, finally, be done right.
    Somebody will, at last, put The Empire in its place.
    And the next. And the next…..
    “I want to believe”.

    Good.

    Read More
    • Replies: @reiner Tor

    The gap between what was said/promised and what was delivered can’t be seen, analyzed, understood…accepted and, the most important, used.
     
    The gap was there. I have already wrote that it was very likely to embolden the warmongers in the US. Therefore, a possibly fatal mistake. Fatal not only in the sense that it could lead to defeat, but that it could lead to world war, too. And probably a result of Putin not being prepared to go all the way to the wall. Weakness. Which might prove fatal.

    But there was a gap between what Trump and the Americans promised and what they did. You forgot to analyze it. It’s obvious that the Americans (at least the military) are horrified by the dangers of going to war. Where was the “big price” Trump promised? Another round of sanctions? Obviously not the empty building.

    Neither side plays this game of chicken very well.
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  137. @Anon

    Pffffshshshwahahahaha – and you guys want us to jump on this “democracy” band wagon??!!
     
    Chicago is not a democracy?

    It would be appropriate to call Chicago a “single party state,” where your actual choice is between Democrats running in the primary.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Talha
    And between future inmates if the position you are voting on is governor.

    Peace.
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  138. Talha says:
    @Joe Stalin
    It would be appropriate to call Chicago a "single party state," where your actual choice is between Democrats running in the primary.

    And between future inmates if the position you are voting on is governor.

    Peace.

    Read More
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  139. dfordoom says: • Website
    @reiner Tor

    Haha…I mean….FFS, the most popular thread is about possibility of WWIII. The second is about Asian girls hair. You can’t make that up.
     
    I used to like Steve Sailer very much, and I still like him. I just cannot understand how neither he nor especially his commenters take this Syria issue seriously. I checked the comments in his Syria threads (there were I think only two), and a relatively large portion of the comments consisted of jingoism and the like. But what astonished me how few comments it got. Apparently no foreign policy minded people are there. One important reason for this was that Steve himself didn’t write anything about it, merely asked for the opinions of the commentariat. Which is strange, but I guess he really doesn’t care for foreign policy.

    I used to like Steve Sailer very much, and I still like him. I just cannot understand how neither he nor especially his commenters take this Syria issue seriously. I checked the comments in his Syria threads (there were I think only two), and a relatively large portion of the comments consisted of jingoism and the like.

    That’s the depressing thing about American right-wingers. So many of them think that being conservative means being obsessed with guns and worshipping the military and the police.

    And then there are the libertarians, just as crazy but in a different way.

    Read More
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  140. dfordoom says: • Website
    @Randal

    We’ll throw in the ability for you guys to call us backwards and lecture us about human rights…c’mon, you know you want to…
     
    Egypt is another nation, it's up to them to decide whether and to what extent a man has a right to freedom of speech in their country. If they aren't up for principled freedom of speech then putting the hammer on advocates of homosexual behaviour is a damned good idea, certainly. You can see where not doing so got the countries of the US sphere.

    For my own country, and the countries we are necessarily shackled to (US and Europe) I want as complete freedom of speech as possible because I certainly don't trust government or the lobbyists it enables to suppress the right speech, and because it is in practice the best way to get to the truth of issues. And if we have to put up with being lectured about human rights then we can at least point out the hypocrisy of their claiming to believe in freedom of speech whilst denying it to their own dissidents. If a man has a right to basic liberty then freedom of speech is part of that. Spurious "rights" to do with coercing others to respect him or his race or religion are in direct conflict with liberty.

    Mind you, our own experience with it of leftists using it as a ploy to exercise their own freedom of speech in order to subvert and destroy establishment defences until they gained power, and now denying it in order to suppress dissent against their own ideological dominance, means it's hard to really criticise those in other countries who don't want to travel the same route. Let them blaspheme against your established religion all you like, once they get to wear the jackboots you can be sure they won't be letting you get away with offending their specially protected minorities or outraging against their sacred dogmas.

    then putting the hammer on advocates of homosexual behaviour is a damned good idea, certainly. You can see where not doing so got the countries of the US sphere.

    Exactly. The best way to avoid the dangers of a slippery slope is not to start on that slippery slope in the first place. If the Egyptians are smart they’ll bring down the hammer as hard as possible.

    Mind you, our own experience with it of leftists using it as a ploy to exercise their own freedom of speech in order to subvert and destroy establishment defences until they gained power, and now denying it in order to suppress dissent against their own ideological dominance, means it’s hard to really criticise those in other countries who don’t want to travel the same route.

    Yep. Freedom of speech is a lovely idea but on the whole I think it’s done a lot more harm than good.

    The best advice for the leaders of any country is to study what governments in places like the US and Britain have done, and then do the complete opposite.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Talha

    If the Egyptians are smart they’ll bring down the hammer as hard as possible.
     
    No, trust me - that is not the way. You do it legal, by the book and let people know it will not be tolerated without going postal. Going postal will swing things the other way; you want to make pariahs out of these people, not martyrs. Adherence to principles tethered to sacred law allows one to keep the moral high ground against the poz.

    and then do the complete opposite.
     
    Again, I would not say the “complete opposite” since there are some great lessons from the Anglo-Saxon legal experiment. It was not so bad for a while, but yes, the more recent manifestations should be case studies in dysfunctions-to-avoid.

    Peace.
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  141. Talha says:
    @dfordoom

    then putting the hammer on advocates of homosexual behaviour is a damned good idea, certainly. You can see where not doing so got the countries of the US sphere.
     
    Exactly. The best way to avoid the dangers of a slippery slope is not to start on that slippery slope in the first place. If the Egyptians are smart they'll bring down the hammer as hard as possible.

    Mind you, our own experience with it of leftists using it as a ploy to exercise their own freedom of speech in order to subvert and destroy establishment defences until they gained power, and now denying it in order to suppress dissent against their own ideological dominance, means it’s hard to really criticise those in other countries who don’t want to travel the same route.
     
    Yep. Freedom of speech is a lovely idea but on the whole I think it's done a lot more harm than good.

    The best advice for the leaders of any country is to study what governments in places like the US and Britain have done, and then do the complete opposite.

    If the Egyptians are smart they’ll bring down the hammer as hard as possible.

    No, trust me – that is not the way. You do it legal, by the book and let people know it will not be tolerated without going postal. Going postal will swing things the other way; you want to make pariahs out of these people, not martyrs. Adherence to principles tethered to sacred law allows one to keep the moral high ground against the poz.

    and then do the complete opposite.

    Again, I would not say the “complete opposite” since there are some great lessons from the Anglo-Saxon legal experiment. It was not so bad for a while, but yes, the more recent manifestations should be case studies in dysfunctions-to-avoid.

    Peace.

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  142. @peterAUS
    I'd change this:

    Let’s just assume that I’m a delusional idiot incapable of a coherent thought.
     
    into:
    Let’s just assume that most people fed up with The Empire are desperate to find something...anything...to face up and, hopefully, put the end to its onslaught.
    They want to see Russia, China or any combination of those two as that "something/anything".
    That desire clouds their perceptions and judgement.

    This case is perfect example.
    Endless excuses, endless rationalizations of Russian lack of performance in Syria.
    The gap between what was said/promised and what was delivered can't be seen, analyzed, understood...accepted and, the most important, used.
    Awesome weapons systems; the iron will of the grand multidimensional chess master; the...blah...blah...

    And the hope that the next time it will, finally, be done right.
    Somebody will, at last, put The Empire in its place.
    And the next. And the next.....
    "I want to believe".

    Good.

    The gap between what was said/promised and what was delivered can’t be seen, analyzed, understood…accepted and, the most important, used.

    The gap was there. I have already wrote that it was very likely to embolden the warmongers in the US. Therefore, a possibly fatal mistake. Fatal not only in the sense that it could lead to defeat, but that it could lead to world war, too. And probably a result of Putin not being prepared to go all the way to the wall. Weakness. Which might prove fatal.

    But there was a gap between what Trump and the Americans promised and what they did. You forgot to analyze it. It’s obvious that the Americans (at least the military) are horrified by the dangers of going to war. Where was the “big price” Trump promised? Another round of sanctions? Obviously not the empty building.

    Neither side plays this game of chicken very well.

    Read More
    • Replies: @peterAUS

    You forgot to analyze it
     
    .
    Your types are focused on details of the strike itself. As the "Team Russia"..
    How many missiles, how many got shot down, how much damage...blah...blah...blah...
    It's O.K.
    Emotional investment, perceptions and such.

    What your types keep not wanting to see is:
    One superpower did what promised.
    The other did not.

    I'll use again "street" analogy. I'll keep it even simpler this time, only two, not three players.
    Two thugs having an argument over a turf. Thug One says he is going to hit the thug Two. The thug Two says should that happen he'll respond in kind. .
    All watching that are concerned. Know that both thugs have firearms, even full automatic in their car boots. If they start going at each other bullets will start flying all over the neighborhood.
    The thug One slaps the thug Two. Street freezes, waiting for fireworks.
    The thug Two steps back and keeps yelling.
    They both keep talking...but,no shooting.

    Street wise....what just happened?

    I am sure that guys rooting for the thug Two will say it wasn't really a "hit", only a slap. Didn't hurt at all. Girly slap. Just made the thug Two angry. Should the thug One tries that again he'll be toast.....Blah...blah...blah....

    Two words:
    Respect and credibility.
    Not lengthy analyses of the slap, who said what, blah...blah..

    Fear not.
    We'll have the same...ahm...discussion soon.
    As when the plane was shot down, when the pilot killed, when the diplomat got assassinated, when the Israelis bombed this and that, when the mercs got slaughtered etc.
    Blah, blah.

    Moving on.
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  143. This is what I’m talking about:

    https://www.nytimes.com/2018/04/17/us/politics/jim-mattis-trump-syria-attack.amp.html

    In the end, the narrowly targeted strikes belied Mr. Trump’s description Friday night of a larger coordinated response that could take days or weeks.

    “The combined American, British and French response to these atrocities will integrate all instruments of our national power — military, economic and diplomatic,” Mr. Trump said in an address to the nation as the strikes were underway. “We are prepared to sustain this response until the Syrian regime stops its use of prohibited chemical agents.”

    But there have been no additional strikes since then, and the Pentagon said no more are being planned. “This is a one-time shot,” Mr. Mattis said on Friday, calling the airstrikes “a very strong message to dissuade” President Bashar al-Assad of Syria from using chemical weapons against his own people.

    The Americans promised something. The Russians also promised something. At the end of the day, neither followed through.

    The scary thing is that on the part of the Americans this was a result of Mattis reining in on Trump. We know nothing of the Russians’ decision-making process, but I bet you there were hotheads either.

    Predicting their future behavior based on this might not be accurate.

    Read More
    • Replies: @reiner Tor
    One of the dangers of the situation is that the hotheads might be emboldened on both sides. Both sides have reasons to feel humiliated. On both sides arguments could be made that “if only we were tougher, we’d have achieved more.” Both sides could see that the other blinked. Next time it could be horrible.
    , @Randal

    The Americans promised something. The Russians also promised something. At the end of the day, neither followed through.
     
    I don't see this. The Americans certainly didn't follow through on their stupid threats with anything of substance, but where did the Russians promise anything that they did not follow through with?

    A far as I'm aware the only commitment made was still that they would respond against launch systems "if Russians were threatened". There was the ambassador to Lebanon who seemed to be saying more, but on examination it turned out he was just referring to previous comments by the government not adding anything new.

    In the end, the Americans were very careful to avoid threatening Russians.

    There's a kind of vague feeling of disappointment that the Russians didn't respond anyway amongst those on either side wanting to "get it over with", but it's not based on any substance as far as I can see.
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  144. @reiner Tor
    This is what I’m talking about:

    https://www.nytimes.com/2018/04/17/us/politics/jim-mattis-trump-syria-attack.amp.html

    In the end, the narrowly targeted strikes belied Mr. Trump’s description Friday night of a larger coordinated response that could take days or weeks.

    “The combined American, British and French response to these atrocities will integrate all instruments of our national power — military, economic and diplomatic,” Mr. Trump said in an address to the nation as the strikes were underway. “We are prepared to sustain this response until the Syrian regime stops its use of prohibited chemical agents.”

    But there have been no additional strikes since then, and the Pentagon said no more are being planned. “This is a one-time shot,” Mr. Mattis said on Friday, calling the airstrikes “a very strong message to dissuade” President Bashar al-Assad of Syria from using chemical weapons against his own people.
     
    The Americans promised something. The Russians also promised something. At the end of the day, neither followed through.

    The scary thing is that on the part of the Americans this was a result of Mattis reining in on Trump. We know nothing of the Russians’ decision-making process, but I bet you there were hotheads either.

    Predicting their future behavior based on this might not be accurate.

    One of the dangers of the situation is that the hotheads might be emboldened on both sides. Both sides have reasons to feel humiliated. On both sides arguments could be made that “if only we were tougher, we’d have achieved more.” Both sides could see that the other blinked. Next time it could be horrible.

    Read More
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  145. Okay, Putin really seems to be weak. Dmitry was right back then, the threats by the ambassador were unauthorized. Possible explanation: hotheads are furious and are prepared to go rogue, unauthorized threats (and perhaps unauthorized actions?)

    https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-04-18/putin-said-to-seek-trump-deal-even-after-sanctions-syria-attack

    Read More
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  146. Randal says:
    @reiner Tor
    This is what I’m talking about:

    https://www.nytimes.com/2018/04/17/us/politics/jim-mattis-trump-syria-attack.amp.html

    In the end, the narrowly targeted strikes belied Mr. Trump’s description Friday night of a larger coordinated response that could take days or weeks.

    “The combined American, British and French response to these atrocities will integrate all instruments of our national power — military, economic and diplomatic,” Mr. Trump said in an address to the nation as the strikes were underway. “We are prepared to sustain this response until the Syrian regime stops its use of prohibited chemical agents.”

    But there have been no additional strikes since then, and the Pentagon said no more are being planned. “This is a one-time shot,” Mr. Mattis said on Friday, calling the airstrikes “a very strong message to dissuade” President Bashar al-Assad of Syria from using chemical weapons against his own people.
     
    The Americans promised something. The Russians also promised something. At the end of the day, neither followed through.

    The scary thing is that on the part of the Americans this was a result of Mattis reining in on Trump. We know nothing of the Russians’ decision-making process, but I bet you there were hotheads either.

    Predicting their future behavior based on this might not be accurate.

    The Americans promised something. The Russians also promised something. At the end of the day, neither followed through.

    I don’t see this. The Americans certainly didn’t follow through on their stupid threats with anything of substance, but where did the Russians promise anything that they did not follow through with?

    A far as I’m aware the only commitment made was still that they would respond against launch systems “if Russians were threatened”. There was the ambassador to Lebanon who seemed to be saying more, but on examination it turned out he was just referring to previous comments by the government not adding anything new.

    In the end, the Americans were very careful to avoid threatening Russians.

    There’s a kind of vague feeling of disappointment that the Russians didn’t respond anyway amongst those on either side wanting to “get it over with”, but it’s not based on any substance as far as I can see.

    Read More
    • Replies: @reiner Tor
    I’m not actually disappointed.

    I’m a bit disappointed by the cuck mentality of the Kremlin in general, see the above Bloomberg article.

    It’s obvious that Trump will be unable to make a “grand bargain” with Putin, even without the Russiagate stuff his administration is full of anti-Russian crazies. Not to mention the rest of the establishment. They are incapable of concessions.
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  147. @Randal

    The Americans promised something. The Russians also promised something. At the end of the day, neither followed through.
     
    I don't see this. The Americans certainly didn't follow through on their stupid threats with anything of substance, but where did the Russians promise anything that they did not follow through with?

    A far as I'm aware the only commitment made was still that they would respond against launch systems "if Russians were threatened". There was the ambassador to Lebanon who seemed to be saying more, but on examination it turned out he was just referring to previous comments by the government not adding anything new.

    In the end, the Americans were very careful to avoid threatening Russians.

    There's a kind of vague feeling of disappointment that the Russians didn't respond anyway amongst those on either side wanting to "get it over with", but it's not based on any substance as far as I can see.

    I’m not actually disappointed.

    I’m a bit disappointed by the cuck mentality of the Kremlin in general, see the above Bloomberg article.

    It’s obvious that Trump will be unable to make a “grand bargain” with Putin, even without the Russiagate stuff his administration is full of anti-Russian crazies. Not to mention the rest of the establishment. They are incapable of concessions.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Randal

    “Putin is ready to make numerous, deep concessions, but he has to appear like he’s not losing,” said Igor Bunin of the Center for Political Technologies, a consultancy whose clients include Kremlin staff. “He understands Russia can’t compete with the West economically and he doesn’t plan to go to war with the West.”
     
    Yes, that's actually a lot more disappointing than anything that happened in Syria which, I think, is turning out to be a draw at worst, and in some ways a win for Russia if the follow up plays out well on the supposed chemical attacks and the fate of US missiles.

    Putin's flaw has always been imo a slight naivety about the US menace and an over eagerness to seek a deal with them. If he really can't break out of that even now, that bodes ill for Russia. Then again, the counter argument is that maybe he's right that there's no hope for Russia in the contest. After all, he's the successful and longstanding president of Russia and we're just internet opinionators.
    , @Sean

    anti-Russian crazies
     
    AKA the Chicken-hawks. Its just talk about Russia (North Korea too, they have China) Bolton deliberately avoided Nam and he would have a much greater chance of being killed in a war with Russia than he balked at in his youth. But about Iran they are deadly serious. Russia will begin distancing itself from Iran very quickly now.
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  148. Randal says:
    @reiner Tor
    I’m not actually disappointed.

    I’m a bit disappointed by the cuck mentality of the Kremlin in general, see the above Bloomberg article.

    It’s obvious that Trump will be unable to make a “grand bargain” with Putin, even without the Russiagate stuff his administration is full of anti-Russian crazies. Not to mention the rest of the establishment. They are incapable of concessions.

    “Putin is ready to make numerous, deep concessions, but he has to appear like he’s not losing,” said Igor Bunin of the Center for Political Technologies, a consultancy whose clients include Kremlin staff. “He understands Russia can’t compete with the West economically and he doesn’t plan to go to war with the West.”

    Yes, that’s actually a lot more disappointing than anything that happened in Syria which, I think, is turning out to be a draw at worst, and in some ways a win for Russia if the follow up plays out well on the supposed chemical attacks and the fate of US missiles.

    Putin’s flaw has always been imo a slight naivety about the US menace and an over eagerness to seek a deal with them. If he really can’t break out of that even now, that bodes ill for Russia. Then again, the counter argument is that maybe he’s right that there’s no hope for Russia in the contest. After all, he’s the successful and longstanding president of Russia and we’re just internet opinionators.

    Read More
    • Replies: @reiner Tor

    maybe he’s right that there’s no hope for Russia in the contest
     
    Quite possible.

    But it's obvious that Russia's situation won't improve with capitulation either.

    However longstanding and successful he's been, he's been in power for almost two full decades. Leaders have a tendency to lose their edge over time. So that's the way to bet: he's simply unable to lead Russia under these conditions.

    , @peterAUS

    If he really can’t break out of that even now, that bodes ill for Russia. Then again, the counter argument is that maybe he’s right that there’s no hope for Russia in the contest.
     
    Agree.
    Or, no hope with the current regime in Kremlin.

    After all, he’s the successful and longstanding president of Russia and we’re just internet opinionators.
     
    True.
    So was Milosevic. Or Saddam. Or Qaddafi.

    There is a ...little....problem with Mr. Putin, IMHO.
    Reminds me of Milosevic.

    Bottom line, he is not a Russian nationalist.
    That is the crux of all this.
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  149. @Randal

    “Putin is ready to make numerous, deep concessions, but he has to appear like he’s not losing,” said Igor Bunin of the Center for Political Technologies, a consultancy whose clients include Kremlin staff. “He understands Russia can’t compete with the West economically and he doesn’t plan to go to war with the West.”
     
    Yes, that's actually a lot more disappointing than anything that happened in Syria which, I think, is turning out to be a draw at worst, and in some ways a win for Russia if the follow up plays out well on the supposed chemical attacks and the fate of US missiles.

    Putin's flaw has always been imo a slight naivety about the US menace and an over eagerness to seek a deal with them. If he really can't break out of that even now, that bodes ill for Russia. Then again, the counter argument is that maybe he's right that there's no hope for Russia in the contest. After all, he's the successful and longstanding president of Russia and we're just internet opinionators.

    maybe he’s right that there’s no hope for Russia in the contest

    Quite possible.

    But it’s obvious that Russia’s situation won’t improve with capitulation either.

    However longstanding and successful he’s been, he’s been in power for almost two full decades. Leaders have a tendency to lose their edge over time. So that’s the way to bet: he’s simply unable to lead Russia under these conditions.

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  150. Sean says:
    @Anatoly Karlin
    Needless to say I don't share utu's fantasies on this score, but to speculate...

    In a nuclear war with Israel, Russia would presumably start off with a counterforce strike.

    As far as I know, most of Israel's nuclear forces are just bombs strapped onto fighters; even if they all somehow survive, they can hardly be expected to penetrate Russian air defenses. At most, a couple will get through to hit Sochi and Krasnodar, if they make it a suicide mission.

    Israel also has subs, which are likely to survive, but the delivery mechanism there is through a short-range cruise missile, not SLBMs. Can't hit any central Russian cities, even if by some miracle they sidle up to the Black Sea coast. Due to limited range of diesel submarines, sending them to the Baltic Sea to hit Saint-Petersburg isn't an option.

    That leaves only the Jericho 3 ICBMs. They will be destroyed, unless Israel launches them really quick (the PM will have only a few minutes to give the order). They would then destroyed any city they're launched again, except Moscow; the A-135 nuclear defense system around Moscow is probably capable of handling that (though a few areas of Moscow oblast will get flattened, with probably a few 10,000's deaths).

    American politicians like Tom DeLay have repeatedly said that any country that attacks Israel with weapons of mass destruction would be destroyed by America, and US politicians only stopped saying it because the Israelis asked them to–it was becoming embarrassing. If Russia were to go nuclear in a war with Israel (although cannot think why on earth they would even consider such a thing ) it would hit the US with the first counter-force strike..

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  151. Sean says:
    @reiner Tor
    I’m not actually disappointed.

    I’m a bit disappointed by the cuck mentality of the Kremlin in general, see the above Bloomberg article.

    It’s obvious that Trump will be unable to make a “grand bargain” with Putin, even without the Russiagate stuff his administration is full of anti-Russian crazies. Not to mention the rest of the establishment. They are incapable of concessions.

    anti-Russian crazies

    AKA the Chicken-hawks. Its just talk about Russia (North Korea too, they have China) Bolton deliberately avoided Nam and he would have a much greater chance of being killed in a war with Russia than he balked at in his youth. But about Iran they are deadly serious. Russia will begin distancing itself from Iran very quickly now.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Mitleser

    But about Iran they are deadly serious. Russia will begin distancing itself from Iran very quickly now.
     
    Why? If they cannot be deterred, it is better to ensure that they fail.
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  152. Mitleser says:
    @Sean

    anti-Russian crazies
     
    AKA the Chicken-hawks. Its just talk about Russia (North Korea too, they have China) Bolton deliberately avoided Nam and he would have a much greater chance of being killed in a war with Russia than he balked at in his youth. But about Iran they are deadly serious. Russia will begin distancing itself from Iran very quickly now.

    But about Iran they are deadly serious. Russia will begin distancing itself from Iran very quickly now.

    Why? If they cannot be deterred, it is better to ensure that they fail.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Sean
    I suppose Russia could guarantee Iran's security but Iran would have to obey Russia and Iran won't because it thinks it is a major power. Maybe if Russia did not have worries in Ukraine they would make trouble for the US, but when it comes down to it the US can shatter Iran and Russia will only grumble. I don't see Russia thinking Iran is worth openly confronting the US for. There are some things Russia would not stand for but America knows better than to try them.
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  153. Anon[198] • Disclaimer says:
    @Talha
    Chicago is a Muslim land?

    Peace.

    I’d say you’ve already jumped on the Chicago bandwagon, though.

    Though given the city perhaps paddy-wagon is a better metaphor.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Talha
    LOL! I don't know, but I know plenty of traditional Muslims in the US (and even outside the US) call the city Chicago Shareef (Chicago the Noble) due to how many Muslim scholars and serious centers of learning we have in the surrounding area. So maybe you're right.

    I love Chicago...
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m0zyuc_2UVg

    Peace.

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  154. Talha says:
    @Anon
    I'd say you've already jumped on the Chicago bandwagon, though.

    Though given the city perhaps paddy-wagon is a better metaphor.

    LOL! I don’t know, but I know plenty of traditional Muslims in the US (and even outside the US) call the city Chicago Shareef (Chicago the Noble) due to how many Muslim scholars and serious centers of learning we have in the surrounding area. So maybe you’re right.

    I love Chicago…

    Peace.

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  155. Sean says:
    @Mitleser

    But about Iran they are deadly serious. Russia will begin distancing itself from Iran very quickly now.
     
    Why? If they cannot be deterred, it is better to ensure that they fail.

    I suppose Russia could guarantee Iran’s security but Iran would have to obey Russia and Iran won’t because it thinks it is a major power. Maybe if Russia did not have worries in Ukraine they would make trouble for the US, but when it comes down to it the US can shatter Iran and Russia will only grumble. I don’t see Russia thinking Iran is worth openly confronting the US for. There are some things Russia would not stand for but America knows better than to try them.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
    Iran with a serious Russian commitment could be near impregnable.

    The mountainous terrain would make dealing with Russian-supplied air defense even more of a nightmare. There is no obvious route (or will) for a land invasion. And while Iran will probably find it impossible to shut down the Strait of Hormuz for oil traffic just by itself, with Russian help (Bastions, Tu-22M3's) it would be very plausible.

    Although I am very much aware that Iran often has divergent interests to Russia, a regime change there would bring some kind of liberal/nationalist government to power, which either way could be expected to be cold-to-hostile to Russia.
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  156. peterAUS says:
    @reiner Tor

    The gap between what was said/promised and what was delivered can’t be seen, analyzed, understood…accepted and, the most important, used.
     
    The gap was there. I have already wrote that it was very likely to embolden the warmongers in the US. Therefore, a possibly fatal mistake. Fatal not only in the sense that it could lead to defeat, but that it could lead to world war, too. And probably a result of Putin not being prepared to go all the way to the wall. Weakness. Which might prove fatal.

    But there was a gap between what Trump and the Americans promised and what they did. You forgot to analyze it. It’s obvious that the Americans (at least the military) are horrified by the dangers of going to war. Where was the “big price” Trump promised? Another round of sanctions? Obviously not the empty building.

    Neither side plays this game of chicken very well.

    You forgot to analyze it

    .
    Your types are focused on details of the strike itself. As the “Team Russia”..
    How many missiles, how many got shot down, how much damage…blah…blah…blah…
    It’s O.K.
    Emotional investment, perceptions and such.

    What your types keep not wanting to see is:
    One superpower did what promised.
    The other did not.

    I’ll use again “street” analogy. I’ll keep it even simpler this time, only two, not three players.
    Two thugs having an argument over a turf. Thug One says he is going to hit the thug Two. The thug Two says should that happen he’ll respond in kind. .
    All watching that are concerned. Know that both thugs have firearms, even full automatic in their car boots. If they start going at each other bullets will start flying all over the neighborhood.
    The thug One slaps the thug Two. Street freezes, waiting for fireworks.
    The thug Two steps back and keeps yelling.
    They both keep talking…but,no shooting.

    Street wise….what just happened?

    I am sure that guys rooting for the thug Two will say it wasn’t really a “hit”, only a slap. Didn’t hurt at all. Girly slap. Just made the thug Two angry. Should the thug One tries that again he’ll be toast…..Blah…blah…blah….

    Two words:
    Respect and credibility.
    Not lengthy analyses of the slap, who said what, blah…blah..

    Fear not.
    We’ll have the same…ahm…discussion soon.
    As when the plane was shot down, when the pilot killed, when the diplomat got assassinated, when the Israelis bombed this and that, when the mercs got slaughtered etc.
    Blah, blah.

    Moving on.

    Read More
    • Replies: @reiner Tor

    One superpower did what promised.
     
    But it did not. Do you consider this ineffectual strike to be a "big price"?
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  157. peterAUS says:
    @Randal

    “Putin is ready to make numerous, deep concessions, but he has to appear like he’s not losing,” said Igor Bunin of the Center for Political Technologies, a consultancy whose clients include Kremlin staff. “He understands Russia can’t compete with the West economically and he doesn’t plan to go to war with the West.”
     
    Yes, that's actually a lot more disappointing than anything that happened in Syria which, I think, is turning out to be a draw at worst, and in some ways a win for Russia if the follow up plays out well on the supposed chemical attacks and the fate of US missiles.

    Putin's flaw has always been imo a slight naivety about the US menace and an over eagerness to seek a deal with them. If he really can't break out of that even now, that bodes ill for Russia. Then again, the counter argument is that maybe he's right that there's no hope for Russia in the contest. After all, he's the successful and longstanding president of Russia and we're just internet opinionators.

    If he really can’t break out of that even now, that bodes ill for Russia. Then again, the counter argument is that maybe he’s right that there’s no hope for Russia in the contest.

    Agree.
    Or, no hope with the current regime in Kremlin.

    After all, he’s the successful and longstanding president of Russia and we’re just internet opinionators.

    True.
    So was Milosevic. Or Saddam. Or Qaddafi.

    There is a …little….problem with Mr. Putin, IMHO.
    Reminds me of Milosevic.

    Bottom line, he is not a Russian nationalist.
    That is the crux of all this.

    Read More
    • Agree: reiner Tor
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  158. @peterAUS

    You forgot to analyze it
     
    .
    Your types are focused on details of the strike itself. As the "Team Russia"..
    How many missiles, how many got shot down, how much damage...blah...blah...blah...
    It's O.K.
    Emotional investment, perceptions and such.

    What your types keep not wanting to see is:
    One superpower did what promised.
    The other did not.

    I'll use again "street" analogy. I'll keep it even simpler this time, only two, not three players.
    Two thugs having an argument over a turf. Thug One says he is going to hit the thug Two. The thug Two says should that happen he'll respond in kind. .
    All watching that are concerned. Know that both thugs have firearms, even full automatic in their car boots. If they start going at each other bullets will start flying all over the neighborhood.
    The thug One slaps the thug Two. Street freezes, waiting for fireworks.
    The thug Two steps back and keeps yelling.
    They both keep talking...but,no shooting.

    Street wise....what just happened?

    I am sure that guys rooting for the thug Two will say it wasn't really a "hit", only a slap. Didn't hurt at all. Girly slap. Just made the thug Two angry. Should the thug One tries that again he'll be toast.....Blah...blah...blah....

    Two words:
    Respect and credibility.
    Not lengthy analyses of the slap, who said what, blah...blah..

    Fear not.
    We'll have the same...ahm...discussion soon.
    As when the plane was shot down, when the pilot killed, when the diplomat got assassinated, when the Israelis bombed this and that, when the mercs got slaughtered etc.
    Blah, blah.

    Moving on.

    One superpower did what promised.

    But it did not. Do you consider this ineffectual strike to be a “big price”?

    Read More
    • Replies: @peterAUS
    Let's try one more time. Don't think it will work. Most people don't get the ritual of violence.

    Have you seen the "Godfather"?
    Imagine Vito did something Barzini didn't like. So, Barzini said"Corleones will pay a big price for this" in public.

    There is a meeting of Dons. Barzini approaches Vito and slightly, almost effeminate, slaps him.
    Do you think that was "paying a big price"?
    Just curious. Sort of.

    Or, maybe you believe Trump and Putin can't be compared to Barzini and Vito?
    Now, that's interesting.
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  159. @Dmitry

    That leaves only the Jericho 3 ICBMs. They will be destroyed, unless Israel launches them really quick
     
    The bases are underground to the West of Jerusalem.

    They spend a lot of time there (the last 20 years) digging things in this area West of Jerusalem, building nuclear bunkers, tunnels and bases.

    Probably the base where they put the ICBMs is this one.

    https://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/security-aviation/israeli-army-reveals-existence-of-previously-undisclosed-air-force-base-1.5494915

    Thanks for the info.

    I just did a quick search and it seems that the missiles are kept in shelters, not silos, and are to be fired from transporter erector launchers (TELs).

    Read More
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  160. @reiner Tor
    The authors often have some powers.

    Steve Sailer personally moderates his comments. Some people get the privilege of a right to immediately post comments. (I think it helps to send him money and to be a quality commenter with no ad hominem attacks or tasteless things etc.)

    On the Unz Review normally all comments are pre-moderated, and not always by the author. I’m unsure how it works, but I suspect Ron has a moderator, maybe for some salary?

    Anatoly Karlin, on the other hand, asked Ron Unz for no pre-moderation on his site. This actually required some programming on the part of Ron Unz, if I recall correctly, because the site was envisaged with pre-moderated comments only, to avoid spam and trolls. Karlin still has the right to delete or edit comments. If you edit your comments, they will default to pre-moderation. Then either Karlin or the general Unz moderator will approve it. (Sometimes my comments were accepted at a time when I thought Anatoly was sleeping. So I thought it’s not only him even on his own page.)

    The rest of the Unz Review, it’s always pre-moderation.

    Almost entirely correct.

    I think edited comments here get approved automatically, just not immediately. Old versions of edited comments appear in my trash folder, which I clean out every few days.

    I can’t answer your question on columnist moderation. I think they have at least some input – at any rate I recall JayMan banning some people.

    I don’t want to have pre-moderation on my site because it breaks the flow of the conversation and, more importantly, I don’t want to have to be on this site several times a day just clicking on the approve button.

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  161. @Sean
    I suppose Russia could guarantee Iran's security but Iran would have to obey Russia and Iran won't because it thinks it is a major power. Maybe if Russia did not have worries in Ukraine they would make trouble for the US, but when it comes down to it the US can shatter Iran and Russia will only grumble. I don't see Russia thinking Iran is worth openly confronting the US for. There are some things Russia would not stand for but America knows better than to try them.

    Iran with a serious Russian commitment could be near impregnable.

    The mountainous terrain would make dealing with Russian-supplied air defense even more of a nightmare. There is no obvious route (or will) for a land invasion. And while Iran will probably find it impossible to shut down the Strait of Hormuz for oil traffic just by itself, with Russian help (Bastions, Tu-22M3′s) it would be very plausible.

    Although I am very much aware that Iran often has divergent interests to Russia, a regime change there would bring some kind of liberal/nationalist government to power, which either way could be expected to be cold-to-hostile to Russia.

    Read More
    • Replies: @peterAUS

    There is no obvious route (or will) for a land invasion. And while Iran will probably find it impossible to shut down the Strait of Hormuz for oil traffic just by itself, with Russian help (Bastions, Tu-22M3′s) it would be very plausible.
     
    Related to both:
    Will will be there if needed to open/keep open the Strait. It will also be there in some other cases Randal explained, several times, in other threads.
    Marine Corps starts, in Hormuz. As is their core purpose in the first place.
    Army continues from the established beachheads.

    Hard, difficult, yes.
    Possible, yes too. Very much possible IMHO.

    As for the regime in Kremlin support of the regime in Tehran, well, a couple of options there.
    Chess and such.
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  162. peterAUS says:
    @Anatoly Karlin
    Iran with a serious Russian commitment could be near impregnable.

    The mountainous terrain would make dealing with Russian-supplied air defense even more of a nightmare. There is no obvious route (or will) for a land invasion. And while Iran will probably find it impossible to shut down the Strait of Hormuz for oil traffic just by itself, with Russian help (Bastions, Tu-22M3's) it would be very plausible.

    Although I am very much aware that Iran often has divergent interests to Russia, a regime change there would bring some kind of liberal/nationalist government to power, which either way could be expected to be cold-to-hostile to Russia.

    There is no obvious route (or will) for a land invasion. And while Iran will probably find it impossible to shut down the Strait of Hormuz for oil traffic just by itself, with Russian help (Bastions, Tu-22M3′s) it would be very plausible.

    Related to both:
    Will will be there if needed to open/keep open the Strait. It will also be there in some other cases Randal explained, several times, in other threads.
    Marine Corps starts, in Hormuz. As is their core purpose in the first place.
    Army continues from the established beachheads.

    Hard, difficult, yes.
    Possible, yes too. Very much possible IMHO.

    As for the regime in Kremlin support of the regime in Tehran, well, a couple of options there.
    Chess and such.

    Read More
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  163. peterAUS says:
    @reiner Tor

    One superpower did what promised.
     
    But it did not. Do you consider this ineffectual strike to be a "big price"?

    Let’s try one more time. Don’t think it will work. Most people don’t get the ritual of violence.

    Have you seen the “Godfather”?
    Imagine Vito did something Barzini didn’t like. So, Barzini said”Corleones will pay a big price for this” in public.

    There is a meeting of Dons. Barzini approaches Vito and slightly, almost effeminate, slaps him.
    Do you think that was “paying a big price”?
    Just curious. Sort of.

    Or, maybe you believe Trump and Putin can’t be compared to Barzini and Vito?
    Now, that’s interesting.

    Read More
    • Replies: @reiner Tor
    There’s a small gang, not even Italians but Negroes. Barzini has been trying to wipe them off, but is unable to do so because Don Vito has been protecting them. But it’s well understood that they are not Don Vito’s people. Last year one Negro was killed by Barzini and Don Vito didn’t do anything. But Barzini then didn’t dare go any further, and it’s understood that because of his fear of a Corleone response.

    Finally Barzini threatens that he won’t tolerate it if the Negroes are once more dealing in heroin. Then the Negroes are caught dealing heroin. (It’s actually unclear if they really did it; but Barzini insists that they did.) Then Barzini declares that his patience is over, moreover, that it’s Don Vito’s responsibility, since he’s enabling such animals to do their dirty deeds.

    So everyone is waiting for the response. Especially since it’s well known that Don Vito’s men often visit the Negroes and so there’s a danger that harming any of the men will result in retaliation by Don Vito. So Barzini’s men start talking to the Corleone soldiers if some symbolic action against the Negroes might be acceptable to them. After much haggling, they finally agree that they might visit a lower ranking Negro and talk to him, but not harming him. So they visit him and slap him. The Negroes having no sense of honor actually rejoice that that was it.

    Then many of Barzini’s allies start questioning whether this was sufficient to deter the Negroes from dealing in heroin (much less destroying them), and Barzini’s consigliere openly states that they didn’t dare do anything more because of the risk of retaliation by the Corleones.

    I’m not saying it makes the Russians look strong. But neither did it make the Americans look strong. Maybe they look slightly better, but not nearly as much as in your example of Barzini personally slapping Don Vito.
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  164. @peterAUS
    Let's try one more time. Don't think it will work. Most people don't get the ritual of violence.

    Have you seen the "Godfather"?
    Imagine Vito did something Barzini didn't like. So, Barzini said"Corleones will pay a big price for this" in public.

    There is a meeting of Dons. Barzini approaches Vito and slightly, almost effeminate, slaps him.
    Do you think that was "paying a big price"?
    Just curious. Sort of.

    Or, maybe you believe Trump and Putin can't be compared to Barzini and Vito?
    Now, that's interesting.

    There’s a small gang, not even Italians but Negroes. Barzini has been trying to wipe them off, but is unable to do so because Don Vito has been protecting them. But it’s well understood that they are not Don Vito’s people. Last year one Negro was killed by Barzini and Don Vito didn’t do anything. But Barzini then didn’t dare go any further, and it’s understood that because of his fear of a Corleone response.

    Finally Barzini threatens that he won’t tolerate it if the Negroes are once more dealing in heroin. Then the Negroes are caught dealing heroin. (It’s actually unclear if they really did it; but Barzini insists that they did.) Then Barzini declares that his patience is over, moreover, that it’s Don Vito’s responsibility, since he’s enabling such animals to do their dirty deeds.

    So everyone is waiting for the response. Especially since it’s well known that Don Vito’s men often visit the Negroes and so there’s a danger that harming any of the men will result in retaliation by Don Vito. So Barzini’s men start talking to the Corleone soldiers if some symbolic action against the Negroes might be acceptable to them. After much haggling, they finally agree that they might visit a lower ranking Negro and talk to him, but not harming him. So they visit him and slap him. The Negroes having no sense of honor actually rejoice that that was it.

    Then many of Barzini’s allies start questioning whether this was sufficient to deter the Negroes from dealing in heroin (much less destroying them), and Barzini’s consigliere openly states that they didn’t dare do anything more because of the risk of retaliation by the Corleones.

    I’m not saying it makes the Russians look strong. But neither did it make the Americans look strong. Maybe they look slightly better, but not nearly as much as in your example of Barzini personally slapping Don Vito.

    Read More
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