Archive for National Security

Putting the ‘O’ in EbOla | National Review Online

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Dear Reader (especially self-monitoring readers overjoyed that Ronald Klain has been named Supreme Allied Commander in the War on Ebola. What could go wrong?),

This will be the single greatest “news”letter of all time. It will make you laugh. It will make you cry. Pathos, logos, and ethos will leap into the San Diego Zoo bear pit of your mind and shout “Bear Fight!” When it is over, you will feel like you kissed your long-lost love both goodbye and hello at a Paris train station. You’ll be rested, as if you just woke from a nap by a waterfall using a panda bear’s belly as a pillow. While it’s not true we only use 10 percent of our brains, you will feel like that had been the case up until now. You’ll be able to cook twelve-minute brownies in seven minutes. You will never have to eat kale again. This will make total sense to you. Suddenly, whether asked to train cats to use a human toilet or use a semicolon correctly, you’ll say, “Of course, a child could do it.”

Now, even grading on my own curve, this was a remarkably stupid paragraph to write. The first rule of writing is “Sacrifice a bull to Crom before you start typing” (“Is that what we’re calling it now?” — The Couch). No, the first rule of writing is that there is no first rule, save perhaps “Always write in the language of your intended reader.”

(I mean, if I wrote this in Esperanto or Iroquois I’d lose a lot of you pretty quickly. But I believe good writing — like good jokes and good food — is whatever works. But some kinds of writing are riskier than others, which is why my Epic Poem (So epic I needlessly capitalized both “Epic” and “Poem”!) about the cancellation of Firefly molders in my desk drawer).

In fact, the reason that first paragraph was so dumb is that it violated a rule that transcends even the obscure-rightwing-free-“news”letter industry. No, really.

That rule is: Never overpromise. The common phrasing is “never overpromise and under-deliver,” but under-delivering is almost inherent in the word “overpromise.” It’s not an overpromise if you fulfill expectations. In other words, managing expectations is really important.

Read complete article via Putting the ‘O’ in EbOla | National Review Online.

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The Khorosan Group Does Not Exist | National Review Online

This guy has no shame.

This guy has no shame.

We’re being had. Again.

For six years, President Obama has endeavored to will the country into accepting two pillars of his alternative national-security reality. First, he claims to have dealt decisively with the terrorist threat, rendering it a disparate series of ragtag jayvees. Second, he asserts that the threat is unrelated to Islam, which is innately peaceful, moderate, and opposed to the wanton “violent extremists” who purport to act in its name.

Now, the president has been compelled to act against a jihad that has neither ended nor been “decimated.” The jihad, in fact, has inevitably intensified under his counterfactual worldview, which holds that empowering Islamic supremacists is the path to security and stability. Yet even as war intensifies in Iraq and Syria — even as jihadists continue advancing, continue killing and capturing hapless opposition forces on the ground despite Obama’s futile air raids — the president won’t let go of the charade.

Hence, Obama gives us the Khorosan Group.

The who?

There is a reason that no one had heard of such a group until a nanosecond ago, when the “Khorosan Group” suddenly went from anonymity to the “imminent threat” that became the rationale for an emergency air war there was supposedly no time to ask Congress to authorize.

You haven’t heard of the Khorosan Group because there isn’t one. It is a name the administration came up with, calculating that Khorosan — the –Iranian–?Afghan border region — had sufficient connection to jihadist lore that no one would call the president on it.

The “Khorosan Group” is al-Qaeda. It is simply a faction within the global terror network’s Syrian franchise, “Jabhat al-Nusra.” Its leader, Mushin al-Fadhli (believed to have been killed in this week’s U.S.-led air strikes), was an intimate of Ayman al-Zawahiri, the emir of al-Qaeda who dispatched him to the jihad in Syria. Except that if you listen to administration officials long enough, you come away thinking that Zawahiri is not really al-Qaeda, either. Instead, he’s something the administration is at pains to call “core al-Qaeda.”

“Core al-Qaeda,” you are to understand, is different from “Jabhat al-Nusra,” which in turn is distinct from “al-Qaeda in Iraq” (formerly “al-Qaeda in Mesopotamia,” now the “Islamic State” al-Qaeda spin-off that is, itself, formerly “al-Qaeda in Iraq and al-Sham” or “al-Qaeda in Iraq and the Levant”). That al-Qaeda, don’t you know, is a different outfit from al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula . . . which, of course, should never be mistaken for “al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb,” “Boko Haram,” “Ansar al-Sharia,” or the latest entry, “al-Qaeda in the Indian Subcontinent.”

Read complete article via The Khorosan Group Does Not Exist | National Review Online.

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Benghazi anniversary: Two years later America still waiting to learn real story | Fox News

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It was a searing moment in American history that showed us at our very best — and, sadly, our worst.

It was an event that will be remembered for the courageous heroism of some, and the feckless self-centeredness of others.

September 11, 2014 marks the second anniversary of the deadly attacks on the American diplomatic compound in Benghazi, Libya, that killed U.S. Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens, Foreign Service information management officer Sean Smith and two of their would-be rescuers, Glen Doherty and Tyrone S. Woods.

Two years later, like the rest of us in the nation, Patricia Smith is still waiting to learn the real story of what happened that night in the North African desert.

Two years later, I still cannot get the words of Smith’s mother out of my mind.

“Every time I see this on TV,” she told the House Oversight Committee, “I see these bloody fingerprints crawling down a wall of that Benghazi place and I ask everybody, ‘do those belong to my son?‘ and nobody has told me anything.”

“It’s been pure hell living through all this and not getting any answers.”

“I was told a few things,” she corrected herself, holding back tears. “They were all lies.”

“Obama and Hillary and Panetta and Biden and [United Nations Ambassador] Susan [Rice] all came up to me at the casket ceremony and gave me a big hug, and every one of them said it was ‘the video,’ but even then, they knew it wasn’t,” she said. “They lied to me.”

“I don’t count, the people of America don’t count,” she bemoaned, the frustration visible on her face.   “The only thing that counts is themselves and their jobs.  I want to know what happened to my son!  Why can’t these people tell us this?”

Two years later, like the rest of us in the nation, Patricia Smith is still waiting to learn the real story of what happened that night in the North African desert.

A decorated Navy SEAL, Woods served multiple tours in Afghanistan, Iraq, the Middle East and Central America.  A certified paramedic and registered nurse, he retired from the military in 2010 to care for his former comrades at the Naval Medical Center in San Diego before returning overseas — this time protecting American diplomats in Central America and, fatefully, the Middle East.

From details Congressional investigators pieced together, we know that Woods along with Doherty who rushed in from Tripoli with American reinforcements hours after the initial assault fought to protect those remaining at the compound.

Immediately encountering heavy fire from extraordinarily well-equipped attackers, Doherty and Woods took up defensive positions on the roof of the compound, each only to be killed by separate mortar attacks. Flying shrapnel from the mortars also injured a 31-year old diplomatic special agent, David Ubben.

The courage and selfless patriotism that was shown that night in Libya will forever stand in stark contrast to the 24 months of cowering, cover-ups and political posterior-covering half a world away in Washington.

What is blazingly apparent in its aftermath is that the president and his team feared the truth: a resurgent Al Qaeda had waged a protracted and well-equipped assault on a poorly defended diplomatic outpost that had killed four Americans, including the first U.S. ambassador to die in the course of duty in more than 30 years.

Had the real facts of the Benghazi assault become known at the time, it would have given lie to the administration’s false narrative of a decapitated al Qaeda and a pacified Libya. With eyes sharply focused on the Presidential election just weeks away, Obama, Hillary Clinton and their team began a campaign to dissemble.

Those who died that night on our behalf deserved better from the government they served. Two years later, so do we.

via Benghazi anniversary: Two years later America still waiting to learn real story | Fox News.

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News Reports in Central America: ‘Go to America With Your Child, You Won’t Be Turned Away’ – Leah Barkoukis

Yet another Obama self-made crisis.

Yet another Obama self-made crisis.

Obama’s calling the mass influx of children illegally entering the U.S. an “urgent humanitarian situation” and that’s exactly what it is—Breitbart has the photos to prove it. The tens of thousands of children that are coming across the U.S.-Mexico border, many of whom from Central America, are unaccompanied. Officials are overwhelmed and sources tell filmmaker Dennis Michael Lynch that the Border Patrol in Texas is on the brink of collapse.

Officials are trying to transport children to their illegal-immigrant family members already in the U.S., and parts of at least two military facilities are being used to house the children. But the photos Breitbart obtained show just exactly what that looks like.

“The results of this mismanagement [by DHS] are thousands of individuals living in inhumane conditions for an indeterminate period of time, as well as exhausted and overwhelmed Border Patrol agents and CBP detention facilities,” border expert Sylvia Longmire tells Breitbart. “This is an awful way to showcase what cartel and gang violence is doing to children and their families in Central America, and it’s a humiliating example of what our government’s inability to develop solid immigration and border security policies can cause.”

Republicans argue that the problem has undoubtedly gotten worse as the word has gotten out about the administration’s lax immigration enforcement policies. And they’re right.

McALLEN – Central Americans say news reports in their countries are encouraging them to make the journey north to the United States.

A mother and child told CHANNEL 5 NEWS that the message being disseminated in their country is, “go to America with your child, you won’t be turned away.”

The woman, Nora Griselda Bercian Diaz, from Guatemala, said she endured threats from the Zetas and extortion from corrupt Mexican police. She eventually crossed the Rio Grande with her 6-year-old Delmi Griselda Paul Bercian by her side.

The woman said she wants a U.S. education for her daughter.

[…]

Bercian Diaz said she has no family in the United States. Her hope of staying here relies on her little girl. She said the message in her country is that America’s borders are open to all families.

News reports in Guatemala say mothers and small children are getting bus tickets, Bercian Diaz said.

“I said, ‘I need to act right now, because this will end and my girl won’t have a future,’” Bercian Diaz said.

And to make matters worse, the administration announced on Thursday that it will renew its non-deportation program for young adult illegal immigrants.

“Despite the acrimony and partisanship that now exists in Washington, almost all of us agree that a child who crossed our border illegally with a parent, or in search of a parent or a better life, was not making an adult choice to break our laws, and should be treated differently than adult law-breakers,” Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson said.

via News Reports in Central America: ‘Go to America With Your Child, You Won’t Be Turned Away’ – Leah Barkoukis.

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Video: Hillary Allies Huddle to Plot Benghazi Strategy – Guy Benson

Hillary Clinton

Hillary Clinton

According to a report in Politico, an array of left-leaning organizations and strategists are meeting today with top Clinton allies to fashion a defensive scheme regarding the Benghazi scandal, in which the former Secretary of State is a central player. With the Congressional Select Committee revving just up as Clinton’s new book is released, Democrats sense a pressing need to help shape the Benghazi narrative, as the issue is one of her (relatively few at this stage, frankly) strong negatives ahead of the 2016 campaign:

An array of Democrats — including Hillary Clinton’s allies — are meeting this week to hammer out a united front on national security issues, including a clear response to Republicans over the Benghazi controversy…A major milestone in the effort will take place this Friday, when a coalition of Democratic-leaning groups and influentials converges at the headquarters of the centrist think tank Third Way for a briefing that includes top Clinton adviser Philippe Reines. The meeting is one in a series that Third Way has convened with Democrats since the George W. Bush era to discuss and shape national security policy. But at least some Democrats involved in the upcoming session are hoping it results in a coordinated and strengthened response to the new congressional probe into the deadly Benghazi attack. Several people involved in the meeting say Reines was invited to speak at Third Way on Friday to discuss the chapter of Clinton’s upcoming book “Hard Choices” that covers the Sept. 11, 2012, attacks on U.S. diplomatic outposts in Benghazi, Libya, that left four Americans dead — including U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens.

I discussed this confab on Fox News yesterday afternoon, noting the irony that a Bizarro World “Left-wing conspiracy” of sorts is rushing to Hillary’s aid:

Read complete article via Video: Hillary Allies Huddle to Plot Benghazi Strategy – Guy Benson.

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Exclusive: Confidential source reveals to me what really happened in Benghazi | Allen B. West – AllenBWest.com

Former Congressman Allen West

Former Congressman Allen West

Today as I returned from Detroit, I had a moment that I truly felt was God sent, as I don’t believe in coincidences. It happened on one of my flights, and it was two hours I will never forget.

I was seated beside someone who personally knew one of the men who was there on the roof in Benghazi. This person was excited to share with me the “ground truth” of what happened September 11, 2012.

My seat mate drew schematics to orient me to the “time and spacing” and the direction of the attack. I learned about the repeated orders to the men at the CIA annex to stand down and do nothing — thank God two of them, Glenn Doherty and Ty Woods, lived up to their code of honor and ran to the sound of the guns, resulting in their loss of life — but the preservation of life for others, their fellow Americans.

Read complete article via Exclusive: Confidential source reveals to me what really happened in Benghazi | Allen B. West – AllenBWest.com.

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ICE data: 36,000 illegals with criminal convictions, including homicide, were released during deportation proceedings « Hot Air

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A preemptive strike on DHS from the Center for Immigration Studies, designed to make Obama’s upcoming “relaxation” of U.S. deportation procedures as politically painful as possible. He’s desperate to pander to his base, which is impatient after waiting more than five years for amnesty and has now convinced itself based on cooked numbers that he’s some sort of crazed border hawk. That’s where the “relaxation” comes in — and that’s the beauty of CIS’s otherwise grim data, which shows just how relaxed the system already is. Maybe O will consider it a blessing in disguise, though. What true amnesty fan wouldn’t be happy to learn that illegals with a total of 15,000+ DUI convictions between them were free last year to get back behind the wheel on American roads?

Note that these 36,000 offenders are separate from the 68,000 illegals with criminal records who were also released last year and whom CIS reported on back in March. The latter group consists of people whom ICE “encountered” (often in jails) but didn’t seek to remove; the former group is composed of people they did try to remove with formal deportation proceedings but who were released on bond or via some other mechanism while the proceedings played out. How many of them didn’t show up to their next hearing? Good question. We don’t know because ICE hasn’t said.

via ICE data: 36,000 illegals with criminal convictions, including homicide, were released during deportation proceedings « Hot Air.

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Armed men seize police stations in eastern Ukraine | Fox News

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Ukraine’s acting president reportedly called an emergency meeting of Kiev’s national security council on Saturday after pro-Russian protesters seized control of government buildings in the country’s eastern region.

“A meeting will take place of the Ukrainian council of security and defense because of the situation in the east of Ukraine,” a spokeswoman for Acting President Oleksander Turchinov said, according to Reuters.

On Saturday, men in the uniforms of Ukraine’s now-defunct riot police occupied police headquarters in Donetsk, the eastern city that is one of the flashpoints of a wave of pro-Russia protests, hours after armed men seized local police headquarters and local branch of the Security Service in a nearby city.

The unrest in Donetsk and Slovyansk, about 55 miles to the north, were the latest shows of spiraling anger in eastern Ukraine, which has a large Russian-speaking population and was also the support base for Viktor Yanukovych, the Ukrainian president who was ousted in February after months of protests in the capital, Kiev. Ethnic Russians in Ukraine’s east widely fear that the authorities who took over after Yanukovych’s fall will suppress them.

In Slovyansk, the mayor said the men who seized the police station were demanding a referendum on autonomy and possible annexation by Russia. Protesters in other eastern cities have made similar demands after a referendum in Crimea last month in which voters opted to split off from Ukraine, leading to annexation by Russia.

Read complete article via Armed men seize police stations in eastern Ukraine | Fox News.

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