Category Archives: ISIL

Clinton-North-Korean-Deal

A Dictator By Any Other Name Wouldn’t Rule As Sweet

There is nothing more depressing than waking up on a Tuesday morning and learning that your favorite football team got hammered during a late Monday Night Football game.  Adding to the grief, you also learn that Kim Il-Sung has stated he was going to wipe out the United States with nuclear weaponry.  Don’t those North Koreans watch football?  Don’t they know it is depressing enough to have your team lose?  And now they want to wreck my day by threatening to incinerate us with his nuclear weapons.  Couldn’t they at least wait until tomorrow to hit our country with these threats?  Just how barbaric could these North Korean dictators be?

Well, the short answer is they can be pretty darn barbaric.  Everyone has heard the saying, ‘The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.’   And also the one:  ‘Like father, like son.”  In the case of North Korean dictators, that last saying can be modified to read, “Like father, like Sung, like grand-Sung.”  In other words, North Korea has had three generations of dictators since World War II.

The granddaddy of the current idiot was Kim Il-Sung.  He gained his fame by fighting the occupying Japanese during World War II.  After the war, through political intrigue and assassination, he gained dictatorial powers in North Korea.  One thing can be said about Kim Il Sung:  there wasn’t a publicity agent in Hollywood, New York and D.C. that could have polished and fabricated his image the way he had it done.  Later in his life, his publicity agent was his son and successor, Kim Jong-Il.  So, granddaddy Kim Il-Sung pretty much established his authority in 1948, and ruled with an iron fist until his death on July 8, 1994.

Granddaddy Sung’s other claim to fame is that he, deciding that Communism was the best choice of government, invaded the democratic South Korea.  That little action caused the Korean War, or, in the words of the North Korean dictator, the ‘Fatherland Liberation War.’  The word ‘liberation’ sounds very much like the word ‘liberty.’  Rest assured, Granddaddy Sung was not going to grant liberty to anyone if he had conquered South Korea.  That war ran from June of 1950 to July of 1953.  The United States suffered the loss of nearly 34,000 military personnel in that war.  (As an aside, there was never a formal peace treaty between the US and North Korea.  Technically, we are still at war with North Korea!) Clearly!  Hence, the speak of nuclear aspirations!

So upon the death of Kim Il-Sung, his demented son, Kim Jong-Il came into power.  Much like his father and grandson, he assassinated anyone that stood in his way of gaining power or disagreed with his policies.  He lived the lifestyle like that of a French king in Versailles, all while his people were starving.  He ran his country into the ground.  But alas, he did do one thing that creates his notoriety….he developed nuclear weaponry.

In December, 1985, North Korea became a party to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT).  On April 10, 1992, its NPT safeguards agreement entered into force.  In May, 1992, North Korea submitted its initial report to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), and inspections began.  Not surprisingly, these inspections revealed discrepancies in what North Korea was reporting and what the inspectors were finding.  In April, 1993, the IAEA concluded that North Korea was in non-compliance with its Safeguards Agreement and referred this finding to the UN Security Council.  North Korea then announced its withdrawal from the Non-Proliferation treaty.

As can be imagined, this caused an international stir.  Though Kim Jong-Il may be demented, he was not stupid.  So in November of 1993, North Korea proposed to the United States that the two governments negotiate a ‘package solution’ to all of the issues dividing them.

Now we need to back off a step or two and access the political climate in each of the two countries.  Kim Jong-Il is the dictator of a starving country.  They can’t grow enough corn or rice to feed their people, but they have money to make nuclear weaponry.  Bill Clinton is on the hot seat concerning a certain White House intern.  In November of 1993, he is gearing up for reelection.  This would be a major feather in William Jefferson Clinton’s hat.  It would also be a strategic distractor from all those pesky women that keep coming out of the woodwork claiming that Bill was accosting them.  So the negotiations begin.

North Korea would allow one non-comprehensive inspection by the IAEA.  The US would suspend war games with the South Koreans.  There were many other provisions, but the end result was a pact that was neither a treaty subject to Senate approval, nor a legally binding executive agreement, but a non-binding political commitment between the two countries, as noted by the UN Security Council.  There you have it…a non-binding pact!  Most of you will remember the pomp and ceremony when Madeline Albright was at a banquet with Kim Jong-Il.  You also remember the notoriety the media gave to Bill Clinton for gaining such an international political coup!

What were the final results of this pact?  Well, Clinton gets reelected amid international accolades.  The conniving Kim Jong-Il?  He got millions of gallons of fuel oil, two light water reactors, and tons of food stuffs provided by the United States to feed his starving population!  How did Kim Jong-Il explain all the American boxes of food to his populace?  Simple.  He told his people that the United States was providing the food as war reparation for having invaded North Korea!   And it is now quite evident that the North Koreans have certainly never stopped the production of nuclear weapon materials!  Kim Jong-Il ruled North Korea until his death on December 17, 2011.

Now we have the grandson, Kim Jong-un.  There were some hopes for change, as he was educated in the west, but those hopes are unfounded.  Like his father and grandfather, he has ordered that those getting in his way or disagreeing with him be assassinated.  He had his own uncle put to death!    So here is what I woke up to this morning in addition to my football defeat:  North Korea said on Tuesday its main nuclear complex was operating, and it was working to improve the ‘quality and quantity’ of its weapons which it could use against the United States at ‘any time.’

Here we go again!   The three dictators?  Well, they all were heavy handed.  They all had unbelievable publicists to polish their images within North Korea.  They all resorted to torture and assasination without impunity.  They all loved and craved attention on the international stage and would do anything to get it.  Is this what Kim Jong-un wants?  International attention at any cost much like his father and grandfather?  No one knows for certain what this idiot will do to garner that attention.

So why have I given this history lesson about the three North Korean dictators?  Well, it is apparent that history is going to repeat itself.  Another democratic American president and another third world crap hole that is threatening world peace by using its nuclear capability.  That country would be Iran.

You are familiar with Iran.  It is the country that sponsors, either directly or indirectly, ISIS, ISIL, al Qaida and any other Muslim extremist terrorist group with an acronym.  And yet, our Secretary of State and POTUS are falling all over themselves attempting to come up with some sort of agreement to assure world peace.

My question is this, “Is it possible to enter into a mutually respected agreement with Iran that will prove to be beneficial to our country?”

I don’t believe it is possible for a variety of reasons.  Firstly, they are the sponsors of most of the terrorism going on in the world.  Whether we want to face it or not, they have declared war on our country in particular and Christianity in general.  The one thing that all these terroristic extremist groups have done is create thousands of refugees.  These refugees are spreading to Europe and the United States and creating a financial burden for many of these hosting countries.  For these extremists, its a twofer!  They are obeying Sharia law by spreading Islam, even to places that really don’t want it, and they are creating an excessive financial burden on the hosting Christian countries.  Make no mistake about it, unlike our immigrants in the early 20th century, these immigrants have no intention of assimilating into the culture of the hosting country.  Why aren’t those refugees running to Saudi Arabia, Kuwait or some other stable Arab country?

On September 10, 2014, I published a blog titled, “What Flavor of Islam Do You Like?”  In that blog, it listed some of the principle tenets of Sharia Law, the law that rules the second largest religion in the world.  Here is one of those tenets:  ‘Muslims should engage in Taglyya and lie to non-Muslims to advance Islam.’  Iran is ruled by a caste of religious fanatics.  You can bet they follow Sharia law to the letter.  Can we trust what they say or do, knowing that lying to non-Muslims is not only encouraged but also prescribed?

Our country, the United Nations and the European community have all had serious trade and commerce sanctions placed on Iran.  Some of this involved freezing their bank assets.  These assets are estimated to be about $100 billion.  What do you think Iran will do once it gets its hands on that money?  The liberals are saying they will spend about half on infrastructure and half paying back debts to the Chinese.  I am a lot more skeptical.  I don’t see Iran building roads, bridges, schools or libraries anytime soon.  I can see a large chunk of that money finding its way to sponsor more terrorism.

Do you think that a nuclear deal with Iran will work?  Did we not learn anything from North Korea?

Political-Correctness

Political Correctness – Boo Hoo, I’m a Victim!

The age of information, spawned by the advent of the computer, personal devices and social media, is truly a marvelous invention.  One can go on the internet and get instantaneous news, weather, sports, or buy parts for your weed whacker with just the click of a button.  You can earn a degree without leaving your home.  We can get instant videos of traffic crashes, riots, and sometimes even murders because of the capabilities of those personal devices.   But like all good things, these devices can be used for nefarious purposes such as child pornography, spamming or a membership to join Ashley Madison.

One of the negative benefits of all these marvelous capabilities in the advancement of ‘political correctness.’  To me, ‘political correctness’ is an excuse to minimize the responsibility of an individual, turn that person into a victim, and then beat their cause over the heads of everyone else to prove they are a victim.  I am so disgruntled with all the crap that is being expounded in the name of ‘political correctness’ that it has turned my blue eyes brown!  Enough already!

This really hit home to me this summer.  While Grandma P and I were visiting our grandchildren, we got onto the subject of bullying.  I am aware of three types of bullying; physical, verbal and cyber.  If there are other types, I plead ignorance.

Unfortunately, as I was growing up, Polish jokes were common.  Why does a Pollock have a ‘ski’ at the end of their name?  Because they don’t know how to spell toboggan!  It went on and on.  As I was the token Polish person in a community full of Swedes and Norwegians and the only Pollock in our school, I was the target.  One day, I mentioned this to Big Daddy G.  Big Daddy G gave me some sound advice.  He said, “Son, if you can’t take a joke, you better become a good fighter.”  I chose to take the joke.  I took all of these jokes in stride and eventually the Polish jokes subsided.  I was being teased in a good-natured way and I oftentimes laughed with the joke.  Some of them were funny.  I heard most of them about a hundred times.  Was I a victim?

Back to the grandchildren.  The subject comes up about bullying.  My eight year old granddaughter, who happens to be cute as a button, friendly as can be and extremely personable says to us, “Grandpa, I have been bullied.”  What?  You just finished the second grade.  So I asked, “Did someone hit you?  Has someone verbally abused you?”  She did not have an answer.  I am positive that my granddaughter was being teased by some second grade boys to get her attention.  If I were in the second grade, that is what I would do.  Unfortunately, she is too young to know the difference between bullying and teasing.  I blame the internet sensation of political correctness in creating victims, even of  our youngsters.

LGBTQ

Never has such a small group of people, approximately 2.5% of our population, garnered as much media attention as this group.  A true case of the tail wagging the dog.

Over the years, I have known many gay men.  I did not agree with their lifestyle, but I tolerated it as their choice of lifestyle.  So be it.  I did not think that it was fair that they had to be ‘in the closet.’  What I am beginning to take offense with is that they have moved from the closet to the podium, and it doesn’t look like they are giving up the spotlight any time soon.

Last week, some actress of unknown merit, berated presidential candidate Ted Cruz while he was stumping in Iowa.  Her question?  “Senator, how do you plan on protecting gays and lesbians in the workplace?”  How do you answer that?  What would an appropriate answer be?  Are we going to hire armed guards to accompany every openly gay or lesbian in the workplace?  What about the BTQ’s of the LGBTQ organization?

Grandma P and I are both upset about all the displays of lesbian and gay affection on our TV shows and movies.  It is being injected even though it has nothing to do with the central theme of the show.  We are not so naïve to believe it does not happen, but do we have to watch it, too? Most of this is a deliberate Hollywood movement to desensitize us about same-sex affection.  Apparently it is working because in a recent poll, the under 25 crowd thought up to 50% of our population is gay, when in reality it is less than 3%!  (As an aside, we both do not appreciate any overt risqué sex scenes in any of our entertainment.  We are not prudes, we just don’t think it is appropriate.)

This week, an openly gay black man shot and killed two of his former coworkers while they were televising live in Roanoke, Virginia.  I will predict and it has already been intimated that he was distraught because he was discriminated against because of his race and because of other people being homophobes.  He will be made out to be a victim.  Never mind the two dead people that are the real victims.  Get a grip, America!  This guy was two bubbles off of level.

Black Lives Matter

I find this whole affair about ‘back lives matter,’ to be both offensive and ironic.

I find it offensive because I believe all lives matter regardless of race.  I find no reason other than because of political correctness or a liberal biased media to assume for one minute that a black life is more or less valuable than any other life.  However, by expounding this drivel, we can make the entire black race victims.  Why?  More government funding for social/welfare programs comes to mind.  Have we entirely eliminated the ‘quota system’ for minority hiring that was popular in the 70s and 80s?

The irony of this situation is that most of the murdered blacks are being murdered by other blacks.  That was prevalent last month in Baltimore when 43 black homicides were attributed to 43 black murderers.  A 25 year homicide record for the city.  So why is the black community holding vigils and conducting marches in ‘other than black communities,’ when the real problem is in the black community.

There is no question that some black men have been recently shot by white police officers.  Ferguson and Baltimore come to mind.  What got more media coverage, those two events or the 43 black homicides in the month of July in Baltimore?  Both of the Ferguson and Baltimore shootings by white officers of two black men in the conduct of a criminal act caused rioting.  The 43 homicides in Baltimore?  Hardly a newsworthy event.

To add to this situation, the POTUS and his former AG Eric Holder have come out to say that police officers need additional training while dealing with the black community.    It is not the police needing additional training that is the problem, Mr. President…its the black community itself.  Gosh darn if I just am not politically incorrect in saying that!

Christianity and the Muslim Religions

In Walton County, Florida, the sheriff patrol cars have bumper stickers that read, “In God We Trust.”  Recently, Sheriff Michael Adkinson received a letter from an individual representing a group called the Freedom From Religion Foundation requesting removal of the bumper stickers.  The letter said, “It is inappropriate for the Sheriff’s Office to display “In God We Trust” on county property,   Statements about a god have no place on sheriff cars.  Elected officials should not use their government position and government property to promote their religious views.”

Sheriff Adkinson’s response?  ” You are obviously unaware that ‘In God We Trust’ is the state motto of the state of Florida, and has been since 1886.  Additionally it is the motto of the United States.”

Bravo Sheriff Adkinson!  We have all heard about people wanting to remove the 10 commandments from government buildings, now bumper stickers….anything to erase God and Christianity from our country.  All of this in the name of the dreaded political correctness. It is refreshing to see someone make a stand for the silent majority than for the loud, boisterous, militant liberal minority.

I researched the Freedom From Religion Foundation.  I went to their website and the first thing to pop up was their ‘donate’ button.  They are headquartered in Madison, Wisconsin and claim to have 22,500 members.  If you want to picket them or join them, they are having their annual meeting October 9-11 at the Monona Terrace in Madison.  22,000 members?  Talk about the tail wagging the dog!  Apparently, it is not politically correct to recognize  our country as being founded on Christian-Judeo principles or to profess your belief in those principles.

So how is this for political correctness?

The shoe bomber, the beltway snipers, the Fort Hood Shooter, The underwear bomber, The U.S.S. Cole bombers, the Madrid train bombers, the Bali Nightclub bombers, the London subway bombers, the Moscow Theatre attacker, the Boston marathon bombers, the Pan-Am flight #93 bombers, the Air France Entebbe hijackers, the Iranian Embassy takeover, the Beirut U.S. Embassy bombers, the Libyan U.S. Embassy attack, the Buenos Aires suicide bombers, the Israeli Olympic Team attackers, the Kenyan U.S. Embassy bombers, the Saudi Khobar barracks bombers, the Beirut Marine barracks bombers, The Beslan Russian school attackers, the first World Trade Center bombers, the Bombay and Mumbai India attackers, the Achilles Lauro Cruise Ship hijackers, the September 11th airline hijackers………………..were ALL MUSLIMS!

And yet……….we are continually being told that the Muslim religion is a religion of peace!  Wow!  It is politically incorrect to say a word about or against this religion.  But don’t their actions speak much louder than their words?  All of this is before we even get to the atrocities being committed by ISIS.

Donald Trump (The Donald)

Many people are surprised by the recent popularity of Republican presidential candidate, Donald Trump.  I am not surprised.  Why?  Because, the Donald does not seem to care about or be concerned about ‘political correctness’ and I think the silent majority is finding this appealing.  Do you know what Obama is thinking or doing other than to circumvent Congress?  Have you ever known what he was doing?  With the Donald, you know exactly what is on his mind and he is very outspoken about his opinions.  He is also appealing because he is not a career politician.

He is the antithesis of political correctness, and the diehard, lifetime Republican politicians are having a tough time dealing with that.

I have been asked what I think of the Donald.  While I am not ready to endorse him, my standard answer has been that, “Donald Trump may not be who you want for President, but he may be who we need for America.”  Our country has become so left-leaning and socialistic, we may need someone who rights the ship of state, balances the budget, seriously addresses terrorism, reduces the national debt, and restores individuality and responsibility into our lives.

Last September in 2014, I launched the Grumpy political party.  (See Grumpy -The Party that Dwarfs all Others)   Donald may not get the Republican nod, but he would be a great candidate for the Grumpy Party.

As you can see, I am very tired of political correctness. I am very tired of being branded a racist, a homophobe or a religious zealot because of my mainstream views.   We as a country have become so worried about not offending anyone that we forget about what is right and just.  Give me a break!

Common Sense: the ability to know the difference between right, wrong and stupid.

Proud-American

Foreign Cruiser Opinions about the United States

I have been remiss about addressing the questions, concerns and opinions of our fellow, foreign cruisers about the good old United States of America.  Most of the people we have interfaced with have either been from the United Kingdom, Australia or Canada.  There are many people from other countries, but it appears we are drawn to the people from the English speaking countries.  Speaking of which, I perfectly understand the Canadians and Australians, but those people from the United Kingdom are difficult for me to understand.  Is that really English?  Do the people of Scotland really speak English?

Anyway,  here were some of the topics discussed during our recent cruises by our foreign friends.

Guns and Violence

Glen and Willene were a very pleasant couple from Canada.  They sat at the adjacent dinner table for about five weeks during our recent South America cruise.  Willene, being the strong minded and opinionated person that she is, was appalled by Americans owning so many guns and the gun violence in America.

So, Willene, this is for you.  When America gained its independence, they got it from Great Britain.  At the time, Great Britain was ruled by a dictatorial meanie named King George III.  After winning this war, (with the use of guns) the biggest concern was that we did not form a government that would allow a dictatorial meanie to rule the new America.  The Constitution was signed on September 17, 1789.  Federalists claimed that the new government would only have limited powers expressly delegated to it.  This wasn’t enough assurance for anti-federalists like George Mason.  These anti-federalists wanted explicit guarantees to certain rights in order to prevent any potential encroachment by the federal government on state or individual rights.  Mason wrote:  “A well-regulated militia, composed of the body of the people trained to arms, is the proper, natural , and safe defense for a free State.”

The Second Amendment was specifically included in the Bill of Rights to prevent this.

Currently, the population of the United States is approximately 330 million.  It is estimated that there are about the same number of guns in America.  I personally believe that gun estimate is low.  Coming from a Midwestern state, hunting was popular.  Most hunters had a gun for every hunting occasion.  (It is the same principle as women having shoes!)

We introduce guns to our children at the earliest age.  After all, once a child is done with a pacifier, a sippy cup or a play pen, you can easily find these items in a garbage can.  But you will never find a Colt, a Glock, or a Smith & Wesson in a garbage can!  In the age of technology, a handgun is very much like using a computer mouse…..just point and click!

OK, now that I have your attention, I will admit that I don’t think anyone needs an assault weapon.  I have never seen anyone hunt with an assault weapon.  Police and military – si.  Everyone else – no.

Being a country of armed citizens does have its advantages.  Japan decided not to invade the United States during WWII because they realized the populace was well armed.  Most of the people serving during the two World Wars in the 20th century from the USA were not strangers to weaponry.  I believe this can be said about Canada at the time, also.  This weaponry knowledge contributed to the winning efforts.

America is the third most populated country on the planet.  There are more people in the state of California (38 million)  than there are in the entire country of Canada (35 million).  Whereas a Canadian would have to travel hundreds of miles to commit a homicide, we Americans do not have any such restrictions!  One more thing…..which state in the US has the most concealed handgun permits?   Texas?  (the most logical choice) Oklahoma?  Arizona?  The state with the most concealed handgun permits is………….Florida, with over 1 million permits representing over 5% of the population.  You may want to remember that before raising a ruckus at Disney World.  Mickey could be packing heat!  Don’t even think about pinching Snow White!  The United States does not even crack the top ten for homicides per capita.

Because of our vast American movie and TV industry, it really does appear that everyone is murdering everyone else on a regular basis in America.   Just think of the most popular shows on TV: NCIS, NCIS New Orleans, Blacklist, Castle plus many more.  These are some of our favorite programs and they all are murder mysteries.  And……….the only way to have a murder mystery is to begin with a murder!  Unfortunately, this is what we are exporting to our foreign friends on TV.  We no longer have the once popular comedies and variety shows of my formative years.  It is murder shows and reality shows, with just a few comedies worth watching.

Movies?  We are already at Fast and Furious 7.  Most of our movies?  Murder. Sex. Violence.  How many parents would drop their children off at a movie theater today without knowing which movies were playing?  None.  But, this is what my parents did while I was growing up as our theater would not show anything not appropriate for all ages.

So, Willene, we are not all really killing each other off here in America.  But my offer to you still stands.   If you ever feel unsafe in Canada, you can come to our house.  We’ll protect you.

National Debt

Robert is a production manager for a company in Australia.  He was one of my smart trivia teammates.   He asked me, “How can America have such a huge national debt?”  What he really meant was, ‘How can we have such a huge national debt and survive?’  ‘How can we pay it off?

I explained that this is the first year of the Obama administration, when the Republicans gained control of both Federal houses, we have had a budget.  Harry Reed, as the Democratic gatekeeper to hell, vowed to never allow a budget bill to be presented to the US Senate for a vote.  He kept his word.  Now that Harry is no longer Senate majority leader, we surprisingly have a budget!

The majority of our budget is spent on social-welfare programs.  Medicare, Medicaid, Social security, Food stamps, welfare a hundred ways………take up the vast majority of Federal Government expense.  The military, the usual first target for budget cuts, takes up approximately 22% of our budget.

We will have to eliminate/reduce many welfare programs, revamp social security and address many of these dubious federal departments and policies.  This is going to take a strong willed POTUS and a strong willed Congress that will be willing to tackle these huge issues and finally, finally do what is right for America and for the future of America.  Paying off the debt?  Not during my lifetime.  Maybe my grandkids will see it.

America at War!

Rudy was from Canada, one of my trivia teammates, and totally against war.  The imposition was that America went to war.  Often!  Well, let me think.  Since 1900, we have only been in WWI, WWII, Korea, Vietnam, Gulf War, Afghanistan.  That’s not so bad for 115 years is it?  One war every 20 years.  That sounds about average.  Oh yeah, then there was occupation of Nicaragua (1912-1933), occupation of Haiti (1915-1934), occupation of Dominican Republic (1916-1924), Russian civil war (1917-1923), Bay of Pigs (1961), occupation of Dominican Republic II (1965-1966), Invasion of Granada (1983), Invasion of Panama ((1989-1990), Somali Civil War (1992-1994), Kosovo War (1999), Libyan civil war (2011), and military intervention against ISIS (2014-?).  Did I miss any wars, invasions or occupations?

What can I say?  Summer television reruns really suck and we need to keep our military in shape with practice.

Seriously, I agree with Rudy.  It would be a much more enjoyable world if there weren’t any more wars.   My sister-in-law joined some peace organization and asked me if I took offense to her membership, being that I was a retired military officer.  Here was my response.  “I absolutely support your efforts to achieve world peace.  I don’t know of one soldier that wanted to go to war to prove his manhood.  You have me convinced.  Now go convince our enemies.”  She was taken aback by my response.

So Rudy, you are correct about the United States becoming too involved in world affairs that result in military intervention.  But the world, in particular our allies, have thrust the mantle of world power on us, so we have become an easy target.

What concerns me more than the number of military interventions we have been in is this; who are our allies and who are our enemies?  Are we helping the dictator of Syria, Assad?  Who are the bad Muslim extremists?  Sunnis?  Shia?  Is Iraq our ally or are they going to do the guppy flop to Muslim extremism?  Nukes for Iran?  What is our stance concerning Israel?  I am totally confused as to what is our national policy and who are our enemies and friends.  In the meantime, we are still committing military resources all over the world.

So there you have it.  My thoughts and responses by three very intelligent people to three legitimate issues concerning our country.

Even though no one from the United Kingdom really expressed their opinions about the USA (I think they are still smarting from losing the Revolutionary War!), I very much admire them for one thing.  The political campaign season in the United Kingdom is 6 weeks long!  OMG!  Our next national election is still 18 months away and I am already suffering from sensory overload as to the potential bazillion candidates from each party.  Didn’t we learn anything from them?  There ought to be a law!

 

you-cant-handle-the-truth

Military Tribunals, We Need Them Now!

I am writing this on Memorial Day, 2015.  This is a day when all of us Americans should take pause to remember those who have bravely fought for our freedom.  Some of these brave individuals paid the ultimate sacrifice.  I am not old enough to know anyone personally that lost their lives during WWII or Korea.  My father and uncle, both WWII veterans, would reminisce about some of their lost classmates.  My memories are of the young men I knew from ROTC that were killed during the Vietnam War.  Young men, all educated, some with families, who will never experience the joy of being a grandfather or the aches and pains of getting older.  I think of them often.

Recently, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was found guilty and received the death sentence.  You don’t remember Dzhokhar?  You would easily recognize him as the Boston bomber.  He and his brother set off two bombs at the finish line of the Boston Marathon, thereby assuring maximum carnage.  In that regard, they succeeded.  While friends and families were cheering for the runners at the finish line, their bomb killed three people and injured 264 more.  Many of the surviving injured have two prosthetic limbs.  One of the killed was an 8 year old boy.

After a lengthy and costly civil trial, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was appropriately given a death sentence.  What I find absolutely appalling is that it has been determined that this sentence may not be carried out for at least 10 years because of the appeal process.  Appeal process?  On what grounds?  Are the three murdered victims going to miraculously reappear on planet Earth?  Are the 264 victims going to be miraculously healed?  I am pretty sure neither of these events will occur.  What new information could possibly be presented by the defense to change the sentence?  ‘Your honor, my client is not guilty because he was in Iran attending a bomb-making seminar at the time of the explosions in Boston.’  Why is this terrorist and blatant murderer allowed to live more than 60 days, at government expense, after receiving a unanimous death penalty?  Do you know why?  Well, Mr Tsarnaev became a naturalized citizen of the United States of America on ………..ready for this…… on September 11, 2012!  Yup.  On the anniversary of 9/11.  How befitting.

We need to rethink as to how we should treat these terrorists.  That applies to the foreign bred and the home-grown variety.  But wait!  There is a procedure that has been used from the infancy of the United States, and reconfigured in 2001 to address just this situation.  It is called the military tribunal.

On November 13, 2001, President George W. Bush issued a new military order in the war against terrorism.  The order called for the secretary of defense to detain non-citizens accused of international terrorism.  The order includes all organizations that have engaged in, aided, or conspired to commit international terrorist acts against the United States of America or its citizens.  Those who knowingly harbor such individuals are also subject to the order.  Under the order, the secretary is charged with establishing military tribunals (also called military commissions) to conduct trials of non-citizens accused of terrorism either in the US or in other parts of the world.

A military tribunal, or commission, is different from a regular civilian criminal court.  In a tribunal, military officers act as both judge and jury.  After a hearing, guilt is determined by a vote of the commissioners.  Unlike a criminal jury, the decision does not have to be unanimous.  The order requires a ‘full and fair trial.’

On March 21, 2002, the Department of Defense issued its procedures for the commissions.  The commission would consist of three to seven members appointed by the secretary of defense or by an appointed committee.  All members would be officers in the US military.  A presiding officer would be chosen and must be a military lawyer.  The presiding officer will have authority to admit or exclude evidence.  The officer may conduct the trial in closed session if this is necessary to protect classified information or to assure the safety of defendants, witnesses, or commission members.

Under the procedures, a defendant would receive many, but not all, of the due process protections guaranteed to a defendant in a US civilian criminal court.   The tribunal procedures guarantee the following due process protections:

1.  An accused will be provided with defense counsel and can also have a lawyer of his or her own choosing, either a military or civilian attorney.

2.  The accused will be presumed innocent until proven guilty.  The prosecution must prove its case beyond a reasonable doubt.

3.  An accused may refuse to testify during trial.  The accused will have the right to obtain witnesses and documents necessary for the defense.

4.  A person accused may not be tried twice before a military commission for the same offense.

5.  An accused will be allowed to negotiate and enter into a plea agreement.

Under the procedures, however, a person can be convicted in a commission trial by a two-thirds majority of the commissioners.  Unanimous verdicts are not required.  Evidence, including previous trial testimony and written statements will be admissible if it tends to prove or disprove the case at hand. The exclusionary rule, which keeps illegally seized evidence out of a civilian criminal trial, does not apply.  The procedures do not provide for appeals from a guilty verdict to civilian judges.  They do, however, call for ‘reviews’ of a verdict by a three-member panel selected by the secretary of defense.  No verdict will be final until approved by the POTUS or the secretary of defense.

The first time a military tribunal was used was when a commission was empaneled by George Washington to try Major John Andre, a British officer, for the crime of spying.  Andre was the ‘go-between’  guy between the British and Benedict Arnold.  Andre was hanged.

During the Civil War, President Abraham Lincoln proclaimed that all rebels arrested with the United States would be subject to martial law.  Military commissions tried an estimated 4,000 people.  There were eight abettors arrested after the assassination of President Lincoln.  All were found guilty by military tribunal.  Four were hanged and the other four received lengthy sentences.

President Roosevelt authorized a military tribunal in 1942, when eight Nazi saboteurs were delivered to Long Island by U-boat.  They were dressed as civilians and were to target American industry.  Two of the eight defected and contacted the FBI.  The two defectors received prison sentences.  The six remaining saboteurs were electrocuted.

Most people have heard of the Nuremburg trials in Germany at the end of WWII.  This military commission was to try the Nazis for war crimes.  A lesser known, but just as effective military tribunal took place in the Philippines at the end of WWII to try for Japanese war crimes.  Both tribunals resulted in death sentences for the guilty.

Another big difference between a military tribunal and a civilian military court?  In a military tribunal  court, the sentences are carried out in a timely manner.  Don’t you think Tsarnaev should have been before a military tribunal?

But Grandpa T.  You can’t do that.  After all, Tsarnaev is an American citizen.

Let’s discuss that further.  Some months ago, the head of the FBI appeared on 60 minutes.  He was there to discuss terrorism.  He was asked a very direct question, “Do you know how many Americans are fighting for terroristic groups?”  His answer?  “We know all the Americans that are fighting for terroristic groups and we think there are about a dozen of them.”  If this was not so blatantly stupid, I would have laughed.  Here is why.  There are almost 100,000 Somalis living in Minnesota.  Not that long ago, there was an article saying that over 200 Somali teenagers were currently unaccounted for in Minnesota.   Well, I don’t know where all of them have gone, but I can tell you that many of them are now associated with terrorist groups that are enemies of the US.  Security agencies have apprehended many of these teenagers/young adults during their travel.  But they haven’t caught all of them, as two high school classmates and friends were both recently killed while fighting for ISIS.  Somali girls have fled to marry terrorist members.  These Somalis are being actively recruited because they speak English and know America and American ways.  Many of these Somalis were born in the US!

Now follow me during my ‘leap of logic.’  If an individual joins/supports and organization that is an enemy of the United States, didn’t that individual just declare war on the United States?    I wholeheartedly believe that is exactly what they did.  And as such, I do not believe they should be granted the liberties and rights associated with being an American citizen and its judicial system.  As far as I am concerned, Tsarnaev should have been tried by military tribunal, with a sentence to be carried out in a timely manner.  I believe anyone we capture fighting/supporting a terroristic organization is denied the privileges provided American citizens. And… this is a big and… did you notice the highlighted line in the military tribunal procedures stating that not only the terrorist is subject to military tribunal, but those who knowingly harbor such individuals.  Do you really think that Tsarnaev’s parents did not know what the brothers were going to do?  Do you really believe that the parents of the missing Somali teenagers don’t know what they are doing or where they are?

I’m pissed!  This country is the land of opportunity and privilege.  Yet, we get these people who use our liberalism against us, becoming US citizens and then murdering their fellow Americans.  Tsarnaev should be hanged.  Becoming a US citizen and then setting off bombs 6 months later was not a part of his naturalization process.  His ranting parents and the parents of Somali teens fighting against the US should be deported back to the third world crap holes from which they came.

Wake up America!  I hope you enjoyed your Memorial Day.

female-illiteracy-rates

Islamic Extremism, Oh My!

Our government is tripping all over itself not wanting to attribute ‘violent extremism’ to the Islamic religion.

In a meeting on Friday, January 23, 2015, held in Davos, Switzerland, our Secretary of State, John Kerry spoke in front of a group of our allies at a World Economics Forum.  In his speech, he said that extremists who are killing children and others in Iraq, Syria, Nigeria and other parts of the world may cite Islam as a justification, but the West should be careful about calling them Islamic radicals. He went on to say that it would be a mistake to link Islam to criminal conduct rooted in alienation, poverty, thrill-seeking and other factors.

Kerry also said, “We have to keep our heads.  The biggest error we could make would be to blame Muslims for crimes…that their faith utterly rejects.  We will certainly not defeat our foes by vilifying potential partners.  We may very well fuel the very fires that we want to put out.”

These comments irritated our allies from France and England, as our administration has yet to use the term, ‘Islamic extremism.’    The British Foreign Secretary, Philip Hammond, stood next to Kerry and urged the defeat of what he called “the scourge of violent Islamist extremism.”

Hurray for our allies!  At least, they have the guts to place the blame where it rightly belongs.   So why does our government do the ‘two-step’ shuffle to assure the three words ‘violent Islamic extremist’ never appear in the same sentence.  Could there be an unknown Islamic influence in our highest government?

Just look at what has happened recently.  There was the shooting, in Paris, of magazine employees and Jewish customers in a deli.  The people that carried out those attacks were Muslim.  There happened the beheading of at least one Japanese citizen, which was broadcast on the internet by, right again, Muslims.  There are atrocities of dynamic proportions taking place in Africa.  These include murder, rape, and selling women into slavery.  This, too, is being done by Muslims. All of the past bombings of US embassies and of the World Trade Center were done by Muslims.  The Boston Marathon bombing and the carnage caused at Ft. Hood were all carried out by Muslims.

These events are just the tip of a very deep iceberg, and yet our government, in light of all these events, is incapable of blaming the ‘violent Islamic extremists.’

I have researched until I am blue in the face and I cannot put one of these events onto the shoulders of any mournful Methodist, bible totin’ Baptist, or a perturbed Presbyterian.  There is not even a Hindu, Mormon, Catholic, or Jew in the bunch.  Nope.  Try as I may, they are all being done by Muslims!  And only Muslims!  All of these atrocious events are being done by members of the second largest, fastest growing religion in the world!

I believe much of this ‘Islamic-led’ violence is for money.  You don’t kidnap a village full of women and sell them into slavery because there wasn’t a good soccer game on the TV.  You don’t run amok and conquer oil fields for the sake of admiring a landscape full of oil derricks and sand..  ISIL has been pumping that oil and selling it for……money!  So, admittedly, there are many of these events taking place for greed.  Lets face it, some of these people that are being recruited into these land-grabbing, oil well-thieving, slavery-selling ventures are being paid quite well for their efforts.  Probably much more than they can get paid in a democratic, capitalistic society.

Then you have the zealots.  These are the ‘Mohamed inspired’ nut jobs that are the suicide bombers.  (Even though we have now learned that Saddam Hussein was paying money for suicide bombers to bomb Israel.)  These are the people that follow Sharia Law to the ultimate degree.  Kill anyone who does not believe in Mohamed!  Kill anyone who leaves the Muslim religion!   All religions other than the believers of Mohamed are infidels and deserve to die!  If you don’t know about Sharia Law, I cannot advise strongly enough for you to acquaint yourself with the tenants of Sharia Law.  (I published a blog called, What Flavor of Islam Do You Like, in September, 2014.  You will want to read it.)  When you combine the Islamic zealotry with the Islamic ‘money mongers’, it produces a combustible mixture of Islamic-inspired extremism.

So why are there so many of these people flocking to ISIL, Al Qaeda, Boko Harem and similar organizations?

Have you ever used Wikipedia?  Did you know there is a WikiIslam?  It is a website full of information targeted to the peoples of the Islamic religion, just as we Americans use Wikipedia.

John Kerry may have hit upon something when he said that the criminal conduct of these misguided Muslims was because of ‘alienation, poverty and thrill seeking.’  Because, as a major religion, the adherents of the Islamic religion are the most illiterate in the world.

Need proof?

According to WikiIslam, the whole Arab world of almost 1.5 billion people translates about three hundred books annually.  The country of Greece translates fives times that number alone.  The 10,000 books translated into Spanish every year exceeds the total number of books translated into Arabic over the last millennium!   The Arab world’s total investment in research and development is less than one seventh of the world average.  Fifty-seven Muslim majority (all members of the OIC, Organization of Islamic Conference) countries have an average of ten universities each for a total of less that 600 universities for 1.5 billion people. The country of India has 8,400 universities.  The United States has 5,758 universities.  Six out of ten Muslims cannot read!  In Christendom, the adult literacy rate stands at 78 percent.  Nearly half of all Arab women are illiterate.  There were no statistics available for how much “brainwashing homeschooling” that goes on over there.

Here are some disturbing statistics from specific countries.

Denmark – Two thirds of all immigrant school children with Arabic backgrounds are illiterate after ten years in the Danish school system.  Muslims make up 5% of the population but receive 40% of social-welfare outlays.

Nigeria – Illiteracy among Nigerian women of child-bearing age is three times as high among Muslims (71.9%) as among non-Muslims (23.9%).  Two-thirds of Nigerian Muslim women lack any formal education.

How about our Islamic progressive ally, Saudi Arabia – Saudi Arabia did not have a high school until after 1930.  Its first girls’ school was established after 1950.  The Saudis have only 250 public libraries to serve a population of 26 million.  The Saudis spend millions to translate the Quran into other languages, without a similar effort for foreign books.  The youth unemployment rate in 2009 was over 30%!

Tajikistan – Official figures show there are more mosques than schools in this country.  There are 3,425 regular mosques, 344 cathedral mosques, and 40 central cathedral mosques.  There are 3,793 overcrowded schools, with up to 40 students per classroom.

United Kingdom – In 2004, one-third of Muslims of working age in Great Britain had no qualifications, the highest proportion for any religious group!  They were the least likely to have degrees or equivalent education.  Thirty-five percent of all Muslim children are growing up in a household where no adult is in employment, compared with 17.6% of all dependent children.

Yemen – A shocking 65% of married Yemeni women, age 15 to 24, are illiterate.

The Middle East has the highest rate of unemployment in the world.  It is habitually over 10% compared to 6% for the world.  Three-quarters of Arab youth want to migrate to countries out of their region, due to rising unemployment in Arab states.  Unemployment among the youth group in Arab countries is over 26%!  It is typically over 40% for people under 25 years old.

These facts and statistics can all be found on WikiIslam.  (Hopefully, Homeland Security does not find me by knocking on my door for using the site!)  I could go on and on, but you certainly have been able to connect the dots.  The lack of education prevalent throughout the Islamic culture results in many, many disaffected youths.  These people want to leave the Islamic, especially the Mideast, countries for better opportunities.  Unfortunately, they are uneducated and unqualified to hold anything other than a menial job – if they can even get that.  They will then take advantage of the social-welfare programs or possibly become terrorists, or both.  Think about this.  With that background, what would their other options really be?

In November, 2011, the Arab League held a conference in Qatar for member-countries.  Khalid Al Wahishi, director of Population Policy and Immigration at Arab League, said the following:  “We at Arab League have been warning member states at all our meetings to empower the youth.  Unemployment, alarmingly high at 26%, poor participation of youth, and illiteracy are major hindrances to population policy development and implementation.”

I could not agree more.  So what has been done since then?  Well, since you are attempting to reconfigure the mindset of people who have been indoctrinated by a centuries old religion, you can imagine what corrective measures have taken place.  Not many, if any.  This would require the 1% ‘haves’ to spend some of their massive wealth on the ‘have nots.’  They would have to purchase one less Rolls Royce or solid silver Mercedes to build a school or two, and that is not likely to occur.  The ‘haves’ don’t want to share.  And, as long as the Islamic terrorist groups do not directly attack them, they are rather indifferent about the terrorist group.

The only changes that have occurred is that there are more and larger ‘Islamic extremist organizations,’ and there are employment opportunities galore for unemployed and uneducated Islamic youths.   Luckily for the extremist organizations, they have a large uneducated, unemployed labor pool from which to garner employees.

Connect the dots.  The oligarchys that are governing these Muslim countries in the name of Islam need to make a more concerted effort to educate their populace and provide greater opportunities to the young people.  Otherwise, the Western civiilizations will be facing Islamic extremists for a long, long time.

The murder, rape, slavery, and extortion business is profitable, and it appears that business has been booming.