Category Archives: World News

Galectin Therapeutics: When Good News Needs to Be TrumpetedGalectin Therapeutics: When Good News Needs to Be Trumpeted

Seldom do I venture outside the subject matter of constitutionalism, ideology and/or politics, but when I do it is either something personal, remarkable or both. The unique and innovative research and development taking place at Galectin Therapeutics™ is just such a subject. Should the scientists of this corporation succeed in bringing their product to market, the lives of millions of people in the United States – and potentially tens, if not hundreds of millions of people around the world – could be saved.

This issue is important to me because I have a personal experience with the evils of cancer and the fibrotic diseases. In 2000, my best friend from high school (a brother from the moment we met until the day he died) was taken from me, from his family, by the ravages of these diseases. He was diagnosed and taken in less than 30 days. The emotional toll on all his survivors was all encompassing and intense. It is with this personal understanding of the issue that the discovery of what Galectin Therapeutics is doing captivated my attention.

What would you say if I told you that a company – a gifted group of scientists – has developed a therapy that will save the lives of well over 15 million Americans suffering from diseases that currently have no cure, and that today can’t be detected until it is too late?

What would you say if I told you that the Food & Drug Administration is so impressed with the data surrounding this new drug therapy that they have awarded “Fast Track” status to this drug, and that, according to Morgan Brennan of CNBC Business News, there has never – never – been a Fast Tracked drug that has failed to come to market?

And what would you say if I told you that not only will this drug be extremely affordable when it comes to market, but that you – you – could be a part of this history-making endeavor?

Well, it is all true…and none-to-soon for the many people who suffer from fibrosis of the liver, kidneys and lungs, and some forms of cancer, thanks to groundbreaking work being done by the scientists at Galectin Therapeutics.

The researchers and scientists associated with Galectin Therapeutics, led by Dr. Peter G. Traber, MD – president emeritus of Baylor College of Medicine and former senior vice president of clinical development & medical affairs and chief medical officer of GlaxoSmithKline – are bringing hope to millions of people in the United States who suffer from both fibrosis (kidney, liver and lung) and cancer. Their research into galectin proteins, which have been proven to play a pivotal role in the genesis of many diseases, including fibrotic disease and cancer, is unprecedented. In fact, the Food & Drug Administration has awarded Fast Tracked status to the development of their project – a class of galectin inhibiting carbohydrate polymers. These unique and revolutionary compounds bind to galectin proteins and disrupt their function, which has a beneficial effect on these diseases.

Fibrosis, by definition, is the development of ever-growing fibrous connective tissue in an organ when exposed to a chronic disease, such as kidney, liver or lung fibrosis. The longer the disease affects the organ, the more fibrous tissue is deposited and this, ultimately, results in the complete failure of the organ. Drug candidates exposed to Galectin Therapeuticstherapies have shown them to be incredibly effective, providing a promising and exciting new approach for the treatment of these fibrotic diseases; hope where once there was none…none.

Additionally, Shirley Wang, of the Wall Street Journal, reports:

“Some 1 in 10 children in the US, or more than 7 million, are thought to have the disease, according to recent studies.

“The condition, in which the normally rust-colored organ becomes bloated and discolored by yellowish fat cells, has become so common in non-drinkers that it has been dubbed nonalcoholic fatty liver disease…

“The condition’s rise is tied to the obesity epidemic – about 40% of obese children have it – but isn’t caused solely by being overweight. The disease appears to be growing among normal-weight children too, experts say. And even though obesity rates are starting to level off, the prevalence of fatty liver disease continues to rise…”

In a nutshell, what Dr. Traber and his colleagues at Galectin Therapeutics have done is groundbreaking if for only this specific reason. Currently, there are no approved medical treatments available for the millions of patients in the United States who have non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) with advanced fibrosis, or liver fibrosis – today commonly known as “fatty liver disease.” The only alternative to an eventual death for anyone afflicted by these diseases – including the millions of children affected – is organ transplantation. The same is true for kidney and lung fibrosis. With the availability of healthy organ tissue at a premium, many more afflicted with these diseases perish than survive. This is why the work being done by Dr. Traber and his team is so incredibly important to the management of these diseases; diseases that will strike hundreds of millions of people around the world in our lifetime.

Further, the Galectin Therapeutics team is making similar inroads into the treatment of cancer.

Based on studies in non-human models, Galectin Therapeutics is exploring how its galectin inhibitors perform in combination immunotherapy clinical trials, focusing on the treatment, initially, of advanced melanoma, the most deadly form of skin cancer. The American Cancer Society estimates that there were over 68,000 new diagnoses and 8,100 deaths from melanoma in the United States in 2011. Metastatic melanoma has a poor prognosis with less than 5% of patients surviving five years from the point when the cancer has affected a person’s organs. Galectin Therapeutics galectin inhibitors represent and remarkable breakthrough for people suffering from this killer disease.

One of the most important moments for the scientists at Galectin Therapeutics – and for the millions who suffer from fibrotic diseases – came when the FDA approved the drug for “fast track” status. Fast Track status is defined by the FDA as:

“…a process designed to facilitate the development, and expedite the review of drugs to treat serious conditions and fill an unmet medical need… An unmet medical need is a condition whose treatment or diagnosis is not addressed adequately by available therapy.”

By awarding Galectin Therapeutics therapies Fast Track status the FDA recognizes – and admirably so – that this new therapy is the best hope for millions of people afflicted with fibrotic diseases. And for the millions of people worldwide who suffer from fibrotic diseases, and for their families and loved ones, the therapies being developed by the scientists at Galectin Therapeutics can only be seen as their only hope.

Find out more about the incredible work being done by Galectin Therapeutics by visiting their website at: www.GalectinTherapeutics.com.

Why Does Anyone Defend Hamas And The Palestinian Culture Of Death?

“Why in God’s name does anyone show sympathy, and support for a terrorist organization?” –  Former Congressman Allen West

And that is the question that should be asked.  It boggles the mind and offends the senses that there is EVEN ONE MEMBER OF WESTERN CIVILIZATION who is upset that Israel is pummeling the Palestinian wing of the Muslim Brotherhood. Under Ariel Sharon, Israel forcibly removed its citizens from Gaza and turned the land over to the Arabs. Israel has been rewarded for that gesture of conciliation with the abduction and killing of its citizens and the launching of hundreds of rockets into its territory.

Such provocations have finally goaded the state of Israel into launching a ground invasion of Gaza to take on the infamous Hamas, a terrorist group famous for hiding behind women and children even as they target the same. Death and destruction is a deserving end to all those who purposefully target, kidnap, and murder young, innocent civilians. That’s the tragic event that triggered this latest round of the current conflict. May all those in Gaza who support such practices pay a very severe and heavy price for doing so.

In reality, Hamas has constructed a terror state on the border of Israel which, at its core, seeks to fulfill the vision of Hitler and “drive the Jews into the sea.” And now, right on cue, the Left, and the Muslims it has allowed into the West, are now marching, protesting, and rioting outside synagogues shouting “Death to the Jews” and “Hitler was right.” It is disgusting for any member of the supposedly civilized West to embrace the cult of the belly-bombers and they should be roundly condemned at every opportunity. It seems that every generation forgets the lessons of history.

The terrorist society that inhabits the Gaza strip teaches its children to hate and kill the Jew from birth. It is a culture of death and destruction that celebrates the concept of genocide and the massacre of innocents. How can we consider such a society to be worth defending or sympathizing with? It’s hard to attain any sort of peace agreement when you up against a culture that teaches blind hate from such a young age.

The enemies that Israel faces have a long history of hostage taking, targeted killings of children, the slaughter of innocents for political purposes, airline and ship hijackings, machine gunning at airports, suicide bombings and civilian massacres. Couched in the language of liberation and the struggle for a homeland, is always a thinly – veiled crusade to slaughter Jews at every opportunity and orchestrate the destruction of the state of Israel.

Perhaps Zahir Muhsein, a former PLO executive committee member, stated it best in an interview with the Dutch newspaper Trouw on March 31, 1977.

The Palestinian people does not exist. The creation of a Palestinian state is only a means for continuing our struggle against the state of Israel for our Arab unity. In reality today there is no difference between Jordanians, Palestinians, Syrians and Lebanese. Only for political and tactical reasons do we speak today about the existence of a Palestinian people, since Arab national interests demand that we posit the existence of a distinct ‘Palestinian people’ to oppose Zionism.”

Encouraging and highlighting the deaths of civilians in a crowded war zone is part and parcel of the Hamas propaganda strategy and that there are those who willingly play that game and promote the Hamas storyline is sickening and disgraceful. The fact that the Left falls for this gambit is simply embarrassing and all their hand-wringing over collateral damage purposefully orchestrated by Hamas hiding itself and its arms among the civilian population is either willful ignorance or dangerous complicity.

In fact Hamas, purposefully and as a matter or policy and strategy, welcomes the death of the civilians it hides behind during these periods of conflict (for propaganda purposes) while the Israelis themselves are sallying forth in an effort to protect civilians from acts of terrorism. There is a stark difference and no moral equivalency between the two.

In the end, maybe the lesson will be learned by the people living in the Gaza strip that abducting and killing helpless Israeli teenagers just for the heck of it and lobbing rockets at civilian targets carries a very high price indeed and perhaps should not be repeated in the future. I know they want to take a turn at playing “exterminate the Jew”, but they seem to be discovering that the Jews are putting up a bit more of a fight this time around. I respect the Israelis; they at least have learned a lesson from history. “Never again.”

The Bible tells us that Ishmael will be “a wild one, and that he will be against everyone, and everyone will feel the same towards him, but that he will live near the rest of his relatives.” Israel is an island of civilization in a sea of barbarism and Islamic fanaticism. The struggle of the Israeli people to preserve their state and their existence continues to this day and they deserve the support of the civilized world against the barbarians of the modern age.

Whether one likes it or not, the physical state of Israel exists and is here to stay. Israel’s Arab neighbors can either choose to accept the reality of the situation and peacefully coexist with the Jewish state, or accept the sometimes tough consequences of waging war upon it. If you kick a hornets nest, you might just get stung. As any homeowner will tell you, you may not get to choose your neighbors but how you treat them can make a huge difference in the end. You can choose to get along with them as best you can, or you can set yourself up for a lifetime of misery. That is the choice the people of Gaza and all those that border Israel must make, and the right decision will put them on a path to peace.


 

http://cdn.frontpagemag.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/11/hamas.jpg
“Peace will come when the Arabs will love their children more than they hate us.” – Golda Meir
 [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rx_L7wrtEC4]

Video: 2010 Hamas and Hezbollah Propaganda Video “Hezbollah With Hamas Brothers In Arms Will Destroy The Zionist Disease Israel”

Are You a Racist?

NoRacism

Are you a racist? Yes, you are. Good, I have your attention. I just wanted to see if I could get your attention by calling you a racist, since it’s what everyone else does. Today the word hardly holds any meaning. One group uses it to try to make another group feel bad or to get the attention of others that might come to help pile on. In some cases they use it simply because they’ve got nothing else to debate with!

Webster says racism is:

1. a belief or doctrine that inherent differences among the various human races determine  cultural or individual achievement, usually involving the idea that one’s own race is superior and has the right to rule others.

2. a policy, system of government, etc., based upon or fostering such a doctrine; discrimination.

3. hatred or intolerance of another race or other races.

Well, the first misnomer is the word “race.” We are all part of the same race… the human race! We are made up of many ethnicities and cultures, but, last I checked, scientists still call all of us the human race.

Many of those on the Left consistently call Conservatives, Christians, religious, Republicans and other “non black” people racists. Why? Because we are one of the 4 labels previously listed. And to add frosting to that cake… we aren’t Democrats.

According to “them” I am a racist because I think the current president is a loser. That he can’t govern. He treats his job as if he is the president of a country club and all he has to do to get what he wants is raise membership dues. Why does that make me racist? Because he is black and I am white. Not because I am expressing my own opinion about his job performance (or lack thereof) but because of my color that they brought into the conversation.

Yet none of that fits the true term or even comes close to the definition of racism

According to “them” I am a racist because I think the flood at the border, prompted by this administration, by people who stay here illegally is a problem and I want the border and the American Laws protected and adhered to. How does that make me a racist? Again, I can’t find a connection between the real meaning of racist and me simply wanting the rules followed.

Remember, over 80% of the people who arrive here illegally, are processed, and given a notice to appear within 15 to 20 days in court never show up. They never had an intention to show up. If you support that kind of action then you support breaking the law and from my point of view you are not a racist but an accomplice to the crime and should be punished accordingly.


Read more at http://therealside.com/2014/07/are-you-a-racist/#djKd13BB6FHVgJwY.99

I wonder…

Hmmm, I wonder what will happen when a culture that has been made afraid of its traditions, guns, speaking up, standing up, and making a stand because anyone who does will be attacked and jailed. A society that has been made afraid of its government and what has become a ruling class. A society that has been torn apart and put at each others throats for trivial slights and offenses against each other. A society that from cradle-to-grave is being taught to only trust in government to make all their decisions in life and defense. Even while the same government opens the country’s borders to all comers from the 3rd World and refuses to name the marching toward conquest Enemy as an enemy. A society that is disarmed and unable to defend themselves from petty thieves or grand politicians schemes of self-serving grandeur—

Comes into direct contact with…

—Another society where the people have been taught from cradle-to-grave to hate all Outsiders. To demand that all other people and religions are to bow down and obey- to submit. A society where death is the way to paradise and that killing non-believers is justified. Anyone who speaks out is to die. Anyone else who stands in their way is to be massacred. There is to be no quarter until all are conquered. A society that worships guns, death, killing, murder in the name of their cause for World Domination.

What would happen if such a thing were to ever happen?

Hmmm…

Rebuttal of Joe Cirincione’s newest lies about nukes and landmines

nukeexplosion

The leftist DefenseOne website has published a new treasonous, leftist, pro-unilateral-disarmament screed by unrepentant traitor Joe Cirincione, president of the Ploughshares Fund, an organization that campaigns for America’s unilateral disarmament. Therein, Cirincione hails Obama’s decision to unilaterally forego the production or development of landmines (a crucial step on the Left’s road to disarming the US unilaterally) and claims it is proof that the world can be rid of the supposed “scourge” of landmines, chemical weapons, and nukes.

He falsely claims that:

As the world’s preeminent military power and an international leader in human rights and democracy, public commitments by the United States influence militaries around the world. Even though the United States has far to go, this measured step strengthens the international norms against horrific weapons, like landmines, poison gas and nuclear weapons, which arbitrarily kill civilians. Children, families and nations will be safer without these weapons.”

All of his claims, as always, are blatant lies, plain and simple. Here’s why.

Firstly, contrary to Cirincione’s utterly false claims, America’s “commitments” and unilateral disarmament gestures influence and impress NO ONE around the world. If the US disarms itself unilaterally, or gives up on any part of its arsenal, nobody else will follow suit – because nobody else is suicidal enough. (Except Ukraine, which is now paying a deadly price for disarming itself unilaterally in 1994.)

No country that has evil designs and plans, and no terrorist group, is ever going to abide by any arms control treaties, nor be influenced by America’s unilateral disarmament gestures. On the contrary, they will only use such an opportunity to threaten or evne attack America and its allies.

Here’s proof: Barack Obama has cut America’s nuclear stockpile and ICBM fleet unilaterally, is disabling missile tubes on US Navy ballistic missile subs, is delaying all crucial nuclear modernization programs, and has unilaterally scrapped the nuclear-capable version of the Tomahawk cruise missile. Not one other nation has reciprocated – all other nuclear powers are modernizing, and in most cases also growing, their nuclear arsenals.

I repeat: unilateral disarmament gestures by the US impress and influence NOBODY in the world.

Evil countries, regimes, and terrorist groups do not abide by arms control treaties – they routinely VIOLATE them, thus gaining an advantage over those foolish nations, like the US, which slavishly and suicidally adhere to such treaties.

Secondly, American landmines and nuclear weapons are important tools in America’s military arsenal. Nukes are, in fact, America’s only defense and life insurance against the deadliest threats in this world – hostile nations armed with nuclear, chemical, or biological weapons or with ballistic missiles. Threats that, absent America’s nuclear deterrent, would literally destroy the entire US within an hour.

As for landmines, they are a crucial part of the .Army’s arsenal. As House Armed Services Committee Chairman Buck McKeon has stated:

Irresponsible land mine use by other countries has come at a high humanitarian price, but America isn’t part of that problem.  Indeed, we do more than any other country to clean up these irresponsible weapons.  General Dempsey has long declared the responsible land mines we use are an ‘important tool in the arsenal of the Armed Forces of the United States.’”

Which brings me to my next point: disarming America unilaterally, whether completely or by “just” scrapping its nukes and landmines, will do absolutely nothing to rid the world of these weapons. This is for two reasons. Firstly, as stated above, rogue, outlaw nations, regimes, and terrorist organizations do not abide by  any “arms control treaties” or “international norms.” They violate them routinely and shamelessly. Adhering to treaties that America’s adversaries do not comply with is suicidal and will only invite aggression against the US.

Secondly, these weapons – particularly nuclear arms – are so attractive to countries around the world that no nuclear power (other than Ukraine and Belarus after the USSR’s collapse) has ever renounced its atomic arsenal – and in the last few decades, several new countries have joined the nuclear club, with more countries working – and racing – to acquire such weapons.

In 1968, when the utterly failed and useless “Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty” was signed, only five countries had nuclear weapons, the original five nuclear powers: the US, the USSR, Britain, France and China. Within the next 6 years, Israel and India joined the nuclear club. The end of the Cold War hardly marked the end of the nuclear club’s expansion: Pakistan joined the club in 1998, North Korea in 2006, and now, Iran and Saudi Arabia are racing to join the nuclear club, too. Both of them will likely obtain nuclear weapons within the next few years.

This is not surprising, given that Iran and Saudi Arabia are fierce rivals, indeed enemies, vying for supremacy in the Muslim world. If one of them obtains nuclear weapons, the other one cannot afford not to have them – especially since Saudi Arabia no longer trusts Washington’s nuclear deterrence guarantees while watching the Obama administration disarm itself unilaterally.

Meanwhile, existing club members Russia, China, North Korea, India, Pakistan, and Israel are all growing and modernizing their nuclear arsenals. In fact, State Department officials say Russia is rapidly growing its arsenal to achieve nuclear superiority over, rather than just retain parity with, the US.

This is confirmed by Russia’s incessant nuclear saber-rattling ongoing since 2007 and repeated nuclear threats against the US and its allies, as well as its violations of every arms control treaty it has signed (including the INF and New START treaties). (Remember what I just said above about arms control treaties being useless?)

China (which has at least 1,600, and possibly up to 3,000, nuclear weapons) is also rapidly building up its arsenal of both warheads and delivery systems. It has recently begun deploying the DF-41 mobile ICBM capable of carrying 10 warheads to the CONUS. Which means just one Chinese DF-41 missile, with 10 warheads, can destroy 10 different targets throughout the CONUS (the missile’s range is 12,000 kms). As the WantChinaTimes newspaper remarks, this means China could destroy Washington, New York, and Los Angeles with just one DF-41 missile – and that missile is just one of the many nuclear delivery systems China possesses.

Besides Russia and China, every other nuclear power in the world – except Barack Obama’s America – is modernizing its nuclear arsenal, and many nuclear powers are expanding them. India, for example, has just commissioned its first-ever ballistic missile submarine, marking the birth of its nuclear triad. Israel has tested and is now deploying the Jericho-III ICBM with a range of over 10,000 kms. North Korea deployed a new, road-mobile ICBM (supplied by China) called the KN-08 two years ago. France is investing in new delivery systems that will prolong its nuclear arsenal’s lifetime into the 2060s.

Meanwhile, America’s allies around the world – from Poland to Persian Gulf states to South Korea to Japan – are very worried about their security, as they watch the Obama administration disarm the US unilaterally and thus deprive them of the US nuclear umbrella. They know they cannot afford to bet their security, and indeed their very survival, on Obama’s and Cirincione’s fantasies of “a world without nuclear weapons” – especially when the world is moving in exactly the opposite direction.

Many of them, especially, South Korea and Japan, will eventually build their own atomic arsenals if Obama continues to cut America’s arsenal unilaterally. Already, 66% of South Koreans want their country to do so, and Japan has recently built a facility permitting it to produce enough fissile material for 3,600 nuclear warheads in a matter of months, if need be.

The world is not only not an inch closer to being “free of nuclear weapons”, it is moving in exactly the OPPOSITE direction: towards MORE nuclear weapons (just not in the US) and more nuclear-armed states. More and more countries are aspiring to join the nuclear club.

Nor are chemical weapons falling out of fashion. Syria has an undeclared stock of chemical weapons, while Israel and North Korea have huge chemical arsenals of their own. In 2003, North Korea was estimated to have 2,500 metric tons of chemical weapons – all kinds of poison gases known to mankind – and the means to deliver them.

So the legacy of Barack Obama – and other advocates of disarming America unilaterally – will be a world with MORE nuclear weapons and MORE nuclear-armed states in it. Instead of achieving their supposed goal of ridding the world of nuclear and chemical weapons, their unilateral disarmament of America is only bringing about a world with MORE nuclear weapons and MORE nuclear-armed states in it.

The world is even more distant from their supposed goal of “a nuclear-free world” than it was 25 years ago.

As for Cirincione’s claim that “children, families and nations will be safer without these weapons”, that is also a blatant lie, just like everything else he writes.

American nuclear weapons do not threaten the US nor its children and families – they protect them. America’s nuclear weapons are a proven security guarantee and umbrella to the population of the US as well as over 30 allied countries.

It is Russian, Chinese, and North Korean chemical and nuclear weapons that threaten the US and its allies – but they won’t be eliminated by disarming the US. Quite the contrary.

As even Jimmy Carter’s Defense Secretary, Harold Brown, has observed, “When we build, they build. When we cut, they build.”

http://missilethreat.com/indias-nuclear-triad-finally-coming-of-age/

http://www.defenseone.com/ideas/2014/06/good-step-toward-ending-landmines/87463/?oref=d-river

Rebuttal of leftists’ attacks on AirSea Battle

The AirSea Battle (ASB) concept – designed to allow the US military to defeat the anti-access/area-denial threats posed by the advanced weapons of China, Russia, Iran, North Korea, and other countries – has been under a vicious attack by the anti-defense Left ever since its inception – as has been every crucial and successful battle concept, strategy, and defense program in modern US history. As usual, anti-defense Leftists claim that ASB is too provocative, will trigger a nuclear war, will be “ineffective”, etc. In short, the standard claims of the anti-defense Left about every crucial defense program in modern history.

So it is also with AirSea Battle.

In a recent article in the so-called “National Interest” magazine, two anti-defense leftists, Thomas X. Hammes and Richard Hooker (sic!), have attacked ASB on totally spurious grounds. This article will refute their lies.

1. Firstly, Hammes and Hooker falsely claim that ASB is both “provocative” and “ineffective” and “could escalate the conflict uncontrollably.”

That is completely false. We’ll deal with the question of ASB’s effectiveness in a few minutes. As for ASB supposedly being “provocative” and a potential escalator of the conflict, let’s not forget that ASB would be activated against China ONLY if Beijing were to commit aggression against the US or its treaty allies – or against US troops in Asia (and one is essentially homonymous with the other, because thousands of US troops are stationed in Japan and South Korea, with others rotating through the Philippines and USN warships destined for Singapore).

If China does attack the US, or its troops deployed in Asia and its treaty allies, it is hard to claim that the conflict could be significantly escalated any further – for China would’ve already have killed thousands of US troops – deaths the US public would demand be quickly avenged, just like it demanded a speedy payback for Pearl Harbor.

And honestly, from a purely moral standpoint, if China does attack the US, its troops serving abroad, or America’s treaty allies – none of whom pose a threat to Beijing – it deserves whatever it gets.

I’ll repeat: China has nothing to fear from AirSea Battle (or from the US or its allies at all) if it does not start shooting wars in Asia. If, however, it does commit aggression against anyone, it SHOULD fear strikes on its soil – and a credible threat of such strikes is the ONLY thing that can deter Asia, as I’ll explain later.

 

2. Secondly, Hammes and Hooker falsely claim that:

“When you bomb China it becomes a passion over politics issue, making it harder to get China to negotiate a peaceful settlement. Bombing makes it so much harder to return to the status quo before the conflict. You are not going to have a decisive win with China without going nuclear, so you need to engage them and walk them back from the edge.”

All of that is balderdash, too. Firstly, the US CAN defeat China decisively without going nuclear if it applies AirSea Battle (as I’ll explain below). Secondly, it would be utterly unacceptable, and very dangerous, to try to restore the “status quo.”

By the way, what exactly is the current status quo? Unclear and unresolved sovereignty over numerous islands in the Pacific, large chunks of that ocean, and large deposits of natural resources therein; East Asian countries squabbling amongst each other; and China arming itself to the teeth and fielding a military rivaling the US in conventional (if not nuclear) weapons – as well as fielding some weapon types the US doesn’t even have.

That is ABSOLUTELY not the status quo the US should seek to restore. Restoring it would only lead to more wars, death, and destruction.

What the US needs is to defeat China so thoroughly that the Chinese will have no doubts that they will have been defeated, just like the Germans and the Japanese had no such doubts in 1945. When Allied troops entered their capitals in 1945, they had no doubt whatsoever they had been thoroughly trounced.  It is time the Chinese learned what does that feel like. Only then will a durable peace be built.

For a durable peace is impossible without a complete victory. If you achieve it, you will usher in a Pax Britannica/Americana. If you fight only half-heartedly and achieve mixed results – if you don’t fight for a complete victory – you will eventually invite more war.

 

3. As for “negotiating a peaceful settlement with China” and “walking them back from the edge” – don’t make me laugh. The Chinese are not interested in any negotiated, peaceful settlement over the territorial disputes in Asia nor over America’s role in that region. They seek nothing short of total control of the Western Pacific (with its rich natural resources) and America’s total expulsion from Asia – exactly as the Japanese did in the 1930s and 1940s. It’s absolutely crucial to understand the potential America is dealing with here.[1] China isn’t interested in limited gains; like Japan in WW2, it seeks total control of the Western Pacific (and payback to Japan for WW2) and America’s total expulsion from the region (just like Japan did). China is not interested in dividing the Western Pacific nor in compromises.

So China is seeking total, imperialistic objectives, and is prepared to use any means to achieve them. By Hammes’ and Hooker’s admission, China is even likely to attack US satellites and cybernetworks (not just US bases and troops in Asia) with space and cyber weapons.

When one side seeks total objectives and uses total war means to achieve them, while the other side seeks only limited objectives and utilizes only limited means to accomplish them, the latter side will inevitably lose. For nothing can stop a nation (or another entity) which is totally determined (and prepared to do anything) to get what its wants. It’s that simple.

To defeat a China that seeks imperialistic hegemony and control over all of the Western Pacific and is prepared to do anything to achieve it, the US must likewise be prepared to do anything to deny China those aims – or be prepared to lose.

 

4. Hammes and Hooker also falsely claim that

“Air-Sea Battle is ineffective against China’s dense and capable air defense network” and “also cast doubts on whether the US military could locate and destroy China’s mobile missile-launch systems. China has an abundance of man-made caves and hidden facilities.”

Those are such blatant lies that it’s mindboggling anyone has even attempted them. Have they even READ the AirSea Battle concept? Obviously not. Had they read it, they wouldn’t have written such garbage.

One of the key tenets – if not THE central tenet – of AirSea Battle is developing very stealthy, very capable, long-ranged strike weapons (most notably, a new very stealthy long-range bomber) that will allow the US Air Force to evade even the most advanced air and missile defense systems in the world – including those fielded or planned for purchase by China.

What’s more, both the Pentagon and the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments, where the ASB concept was born, have long advocated the development of such systems – especially that all-important stealthy bomber. The Air Force’s nuclear deterrence guru, Maj. Gen. Garrett Harencak, has just spoken yet again on the need for that stealthy bomber.

As for dealing with its man-made caves, hidden facilities, and tunnels – they can easily be destroyed by USAF bombs such as the Daisy Cutter (now retired, but it could be produced again), the Massive Ordnance Penetrator, and the new, smaller, lighter bomb with the same effect, but less size and cost, of the MOP. All of these can be carried by the B-52, the B-2, and the next generation bomber.

Those bombs easily destroyed Taleban caves in Afghanistan; in fact, Daisy Cutter bombs cause small earthquakes when detonated. They’d destroy Chinese caves, bunkers, and tunnels just as easily.

 

5. Hammes and Hooker also falsely claim that ASB

“is provocative in that China’s Second Artillery Corps controls its land-based ballistic missiles and nuclear arsenal. Attacking these facilities, while China has not or cannot attack comparable US facilities, could escalate the conflict uncontrollably.”

Like their other claims, these are blatant lies – and they’re illogical. If the US can bomb Chinese missile fields and nuclear weapon storages, but China cannot attack comparable US facilities, there is no risk of “escalating the conflict uncontrollably”, because the US would then be able to deal China a blow that Beijing couldn’t respond to in kind.

 

6. All of which brings us to the central reason why ASB is NOT provocative, does NOT invite the risk of nuclear war, and is the ONLY battle concept whose implementation can deter China from wrongdoing – and defeat it should it commit aggression anyway.

China has nothing to fear from the US, its allies, or the ASB concept if it behaves peacefully. If, however, it commits aggression against anyone, it has every reason to fear ASB. Chinese leaders probably understand that – and if they don’t, it’s high time they did.

The ONLY way the US can deter China – or any other potential aggressor, for that matter – from attacking others is to promise (and have the means) to unleash lethal, massive strikes against that potential aggressor’s territory and his military and economic assets in case of aggression on his part. Nothing else will deter those who prey upon their neighbors.

This is, indeed, the promise and the principle on which ALL deterrence strategies are based: that the aggressor will pay a huge price for his actions, disproportionate to the gains he might achieve by perpetrating aggression. Only that can deter China.

 

7. The so-called “Offshore Control” strategy, which Hammes and Hooker promote as their “alternative” strategy to ASB, is a recipe for America’s total defeat in a future war with China. Under their “strategy”, the US would have to completely swear off any strikes on China and only fight a purely defensive war in the Western Pacific’s islands.

US troops would thus be fighting with both of their hands tied behind their backs. It would be both practically suicidal and morally repugnant to ask them to fight that way – yet it is PRECISELY what Hammes and Hooker advocate.

Contrary to their blatant lies, the US stands no chance whatsoever of “denying China access to the seas inside the First Island Chain[2]”, let alone “dominating the Second Island Chain”, if Chinese mainland – and all the military bases and weapons plants on it – are left untouched. China will, in such a scenario, be able to continually launch hails of ballistic and cruise missiles at US bases and warships within the First and Second Island Chain – and China can produce literally hundreds of such missiles every year. China can also affordably build large numbers of ultra-quiet submarines, naval mines, and fighters to control the sea and the airspace inside the First and Second Island Chain – and the US would have to expend a large amount of its own fighters and ASW and demining assets to counter these.

A defensive war against China would be an exhausting, bloody, uber-costly war of attrition for the US, whereby dwindling numbers of US and allied defensive systems would have to counter an ever-growing Chinese arsenal of cheaper, offensive weapons. This is what Hammes’ and Hooker’s pseudo-strategy would lead to. It is both militarily suicidal and morally repugnant.

By contrast, AirSea Battle aims to destroy China’s military bases and weapon plants – and thus its offensive war-waging capability – ASAP, so that China cannot exhaust US defenses with too many missiles and aircraft.

8. Moreover, it is Hammes’ and Hooker’s pseudo-strategy, not ASB, that has zero deterrence value. Does anyone really think Beijing will be deterred by a US promise of leaving the Chinese mainland alone and telling China, “we’ll only be on defense against you in the Pacific islands; don’t worry, your mainland is safe” ?

Of course not. Such a statement would only embolden Beijing.

Meanwhile, a firm promise of devastating strikes on the Chinese mainland is the ONLY way Beijing can be deterred from committing aggression in the first place – thus defeating China without a fight, which, according to ancient Chinese strategist Sun Tzu, is “the acme of generalship.”

Historical Experience

Last, but not least, history teaches that those who wage war with total means win, while those who try to play solely on defense lose.

Virtually no war in history (except the 480 BC Greek war against the Persians) has been war by playing solely on defense. Victory has almost always required going on offense.

This is not surprising: when you play solely on defense: you cede the initiative and the control of the war’s tempo to the enemy. While not 100% impossible, victory is EXTREMELY hard to achieve when the enemy has the initiative and controls the war’s tempo. What’s more, when you play on defense, the enemy chooses where and when he’ll fight you (because he’ll decide where and when to attack you).

The only chance you have of winning purely defensive wars is if 1) your military is MUCH stronger than the enemy’s, and 2) your positions are fortified from all sides. Even then, victory is not guaranteed.

And that won’t work in the Pacific, anyway, because 1) China’s military is already almost as strong as the US military, and 2) there is zero chance of turning the Pacific Islands into impregnable fortresses – China will always have more than enough offensive weapons to overwhelm their defenses. Especially given that defensive systems cost several times more than offensive ones.

Confederate_Rebel_Flag_svg

As stated, the Civil War and WW2 were won by carrying out massive, successful offenses against the enemy. As retired Army officer and historian Bevin Alexander observes, the key reason why the Confederacy lost the Civil War was its failure to successfully attack the North.

President Jefferson Davis wanted to play solely on defense. He believed that if the South won a series of battles on its home front, European powers would recognize the Confederacy and intervene against the Union. That never happened, despite King Cotton’s power; and after President Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation, it was out of question.

General Robert Lee attempted two offensives against the Union, in 1862 and 1863, but they both failed, because Lee sought a decisive battle against the much stronger Union Army, a battle the Confederate Army of Northern Virginia didn’t have the strength for.

By contrast, General Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson sought to destroy the Union’s industrial centers, railroad hubs, farmlands, and population centers, so that the Union would learn – to borrow words from Jackson – “what it would cost them to keep the South in the Union at a bayonet’s point.”

While the US should not attack Chinese population centers, it must destroy China’s warfighting capability and industrial centers, so that China learns what it will cost them to grab the Western Pacific, and subjugate its nations, at a bayonet’s point.

Hammes and Hooker still object, however, on the grounds that no president has ever authorized the bombing of China, not even during the Korean Wars, so obtaining such authorization is unlikely, they say. But that is pure speculation – and a truly commonsense President knowledgeable about military affairs WOULD authorize the bombing of China IF that country perpetrates aggression against the US or its allies. Not to do so would mean accepting such Chinese aggression.

By the way, the US lost the Korean and Vietnam wars PRECISELY because it sought to play solely on defense and renounced any strikes on the enemy’s warfighting capability and base of operations. That is why the US lost – despite American troops’ unrivalled heroism and skill and despite the able leadership of Generals MacArthur and Ridgway.

In Vietnam, President Johnson completely prohibited the US military from destroying any strategically important targets, relegating it to bombing only secondary ones – thus wasting a lot of American aviators’ lives, aircraft, and munitions. He personally selected the targets to be bombed at White House luncheons – and these were the ONLY targets allowed to be attacked.

Johnson and the Left falsely claimed – like Hammes and Hooker do now – that striking important targets (like airfields and munition storage facilities) would provoke the USSR and China to retaliate with nuclear weapons. This blatant lie was exposed as such in 1972, when President Nixon bombed every important target in North Vietnam except the Red River dykes.

In Korea, General MacArthur wanted to strike Chinese industry to strip China of its ability to wage offensive war, and to ferry Chinese Nationalists from Taiwan to recapture the mainland, but President Truman rejected that. Consequently, China was lost to the Communists permanently and the Korean War became a bloody stalemate. By 1952, the American people were so sick and tired of it, they elected a President who pledged to end it.

And he did – by threatening to escalate against China and the rest of the Communist bloc with nuclear weapons if the Communists persisted in fighting. This, coupled with Stalin’s death, allowed an armistice to be signed.

But it was only an armistice. It restored the dangerous status quo – of the kind Hammes and Hooker want to keep – which, in time, allowed China and North Korea to become grave threats to US national security. Such are the results that purely defensive strategies produce.

As retired Air Force Colonel Thomas Snodgrass writes, purely defensive “limited war” strategies, such as the one proposed by Hammes and Hooker, have three fatal flaws that guarantee a US defeat:

“First, this kabuki dance of attacking non-vital targets conveys a message of indecision and weakness, and most certainly neither a message of strength nor that the situation will get worse for the enemy if the war continues. There is simply no incentive for the enemy to forego his efforts to obtain his strategic objective.

Second, and related to this first fallacy, is the fact that “kabuki bombing” does nothing to diminish the enemy’s capability to carry on the war, so there is no material progress toward ending the conflict. In other words, the enemy grows suspicious that the implied threat of a ratcheting up of the destructive force of the war will never occur in fact.

Third, indefinite escalation implies open-ended war and an ability to sustain casualties over a long period of time, presumably on the side utilizing this doctrine. This third fallacy is transparent in its failure when viewed from the underlying assumptions of the doctrine itself.

Thus, the ‘limited war’ doctrine is based upon three fundamental assumptions.

Assumption one is that there is some limit to the casualties and destruction the enemy is prepared to suffer. Assumption two is that the enemy has an implicit understanding that the adversary utilizing the ‘limited war’ doctrine is fully prepared to continue ratcheting up the war while sustaining casualties until the enemy has had enough. And assumption three is that the side pursuing the doctrine does in fact have the stomach (i.e., motivation) for an indefinitely prolonged war with mounting casualties.

Consequently, when any of these three assumptions is wrong, the ‘limited war’ doctrine will actually become a doctrine the enemy uses to defeat the advocate of the doctrine. Specifically, we understand this quite intuitively: when the U.S. engages in limited war against an enemy that does not value its soldiers’ lives with the same high regard as does the U.S., the outcome of the war suddenly becomes dependent on the American public’s will to sustain seemingly unending casualties. With this change in warfare focus, the decisive battlefield shifts from enemy targets to the U.S. homefront where the enemy’s principal weapon is the American news media.”

Thus, if Hammes’ “Offshore Control” strategy is ever adopted (God forbid), the US will inevitably lose the war, because mainland China will be completely off limits to American strikes. Thus, China will be left free to wage wars of aggression and attrite American and allied defenses – and to shift the key battlefield to the US itself, where its principal weapon will be the leftist US news media.

Hammes’ “Offshore Control” strategy is, in sum, a recipe for a total US defeat.

He and Hooker are showing that not only do they know nothing about China, they also don’t understand US politics and the American society (with its ever-smaller, and already very limited, tolerance for war casualties).

Any “strategies” offered by such people should be rejected completely. For, as Sun Tzu, who will have the last word here, said:

“If you know the enemy and you know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles.

If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will suffer a defeat.

If you know neither yourself nor the enemy, you will succumb in every battle.”

The ten questions Hillary Clinton should be asked on Benghazi but never will

nowtheendbegins2The interview that Hillary Clinton did with Bret Baier & Greta Van Sustren was the equivalent of watching a little league team throw underhand pitches to someone in the Major Leagues. There was very little bark, not much bite, and just a few nibbles. This interview proves that the media is afraid to go after Hillary in fear of being called a bully or sexist. Hillary was allowed to sit there in her bright blue pantsuit and duck, dodge, and deflect. This interview was a golden opportunity to recant her testimony, catch her in her repeated lies, and most important hopefully have her snap on camera. America needs to see the real Hillary Clinton, the angry ex-hippy, with a fuse shorter than President Obama’s attention span when he is reading a teleprompter.

Here are the 10 questions Hillary should have been asked but unfortunately never will.

1. In March of 2012 US Embassy in Tripoli Security Officer Eric Nordstrom requested extra security for the first time for the Benghazi Consolate and recieved no response. Three months later Nordstrom asks a second time, and still no response. Why didn’t your State Dept. send extra security to Benghazi when it was requested?

2. Don’t you think if security details were granted when they were first requested that maybe the Benghazi attack might never have happened and four Americans would still be alive?

3. Why after repeated requests for security did your State Dept and the Administration remove three six man security teams and a sixteen man elite special forces team from Libya?

4. Why did you purposely make the situation in Libya more dangerous by repeatedly denying requests for extra security?

5. With your lackluster performance in the Senate and your abysmal record as Secretary of State why do you think voters should trust you as President when your record clearly shows you are unfit to lead?

6. Have you personally spoke to the families and loved ones of the four men who were brutally murdered on your watch? And if so, when they questioned you on your inaction did you tell them, “What difference does it make!”

7. Why are you, the President, and the entire administration forbidding anyone with first hand knowledge of what really happened in Benghazi from testifying? What is it that you and the administration have to hide?

8. When you had a chance to label Boko Haram as a terrorist group during your failed stint as Secretary of State, you didn’t. Why then should the American people ever trust you with their national security?

9. Did you decide to do this interview because your book is not quite meeting the expectations you had hoped for?

10. You titled your book “Hard Choices”. Did you name it that because it will be a hard choice for voters to support you if you run in 2016? Or did you name it hard choices because that is what you were faced with as Secretary of State and failed to make?

These are the questions Hillary Clinton should have been asked. Once again, we allowed the left to dictate to us what we can ask them. If these questions were asked two things would have happened. The first and most predictable response would have been that Hillary would have walked out of the interview. This would have been great! She would been seen as the limp wristed, weak in the knees, pathetic leader that most people who pay attention know she is. It would have been devastating to her chances which are already slim to none in 2016.

The second best thing that could have happened was she got angry and lashed out on National Television! That would have been worth the price of admission! Either way, she would have been exposed.

If you want to beat the left you have to smack them in the face with an anvil of their own hypocrisy. Conservatives can’t fear these spineless, yellow bellied, talking serpents. They are so easy to defeat its pathetic. Liberals have about enough substance of microscopic pond scum. When you challenge a liberal with common sense and intelligent thought they fold up like a cheap suit and cry one or all of these three things: racism, discrimination, or victimization. Once you figure out their playbook they either cheat, steal, or forfeit the game. If you think these are the questions you would have liked ask please share this article with others. Maybe someone in the Media will act upon it; but don’t hold your breathe.

For more real, raw, and rabid commentary check out my radio show here: http://www.doublewidenetwork.com/index.php/Shows/detail/the_josh_bernstein_show

The Economy: National Review and de Rugy promote suicidal “free trade” policies, attack Ex-Im

Last month, the National Review’s pseudoconservative editors (who, BTW, supported John McCain for reelection in 2010) and NRO blogger Veronique de Rugy (a scholar at the GMU’s Mercatus Center) launched another idiotic, ignorant attack on the Export-Import Bank and on the Boeing company (one of the Bank’s beneficiaries).

Why the Ex-Im Bank is needed, and why “free trade” policies like those de Rugy and the NRO advocate are suicidal, is something I’ve written about several times, most recently here, demonstrating how Britain lost her economic preeminence by embracing these “free trade” policies.

In short, the Ex-Im Bank is needed to level the playing field by loaning money to the buyers of American exports. This is because foreign countries heavily subsidize (not merely credit, but subsidize) their own exporters, thus undercutting the prices of their exports and rigging the playing field. At the same time, they impose steep tariffs and VAT taxes on all American products entering their markets.

The Ex-Im Bank is one of the crucial, absolutely needed tools to level the playing field.

But the free traders at the NRO, including its editors and Veronique de Rugy, don’t give up in their idiotic attacks on the Bank. In doing so, they’ve made some of the most idiotic, nonsensical claims I have ever heard on any issue, not just trade.

They falsely claim that the Ex-Im Bank hands out “subsidies”, which is patently false.

Subsidies are free handouts that don’t have to be paid back (and never are).

The Ex-Im Bank, OTOH, awards LOANS, which are quite different thing: they have to be paid back with interest. And in the Ex-Im Bank’s case, they always are. Last year, taxpayers made a profit of one billion dollars on that interest.

De Rugy also protests that Boeing is the largest beneficiary of Ex-Im Bank loans.

But Boeing does not receive a dime from Ex-Im. It is Boeing aircraft buyers that receive Ex-Im Bank loans.

Speaking of Boeing, it is America’s last surviving airliner aircraft maker. It is now locked in a life-and-death survival battle against the European aircraft maker Airbus, heavily subsidized by the governments of European countries, including Veronique de Rugy’s homeland, France (which begs the question: is de Rugy just plain stupid, or is she consciously advocating for a policy that would help Airbus kill Boeing?).

De Rugy asks why Boeing needs Ex-Im loans and whether it can’t simply make good aircraft that customers would want to buy.

But Boeing DOES make excellent aircraft, including the B737, the most popular medium-range jetliner in the world, and the B777, the longest-ranged plane in the world.

But making excellent products is not enough; they have to be cheap enough for customers to buy. And while Boeing receives NO subsidies from the US government whatsoever, its European rival Airbus is LAVISHLY subsidized by European governments, thus reducing Airbus aircraft prices and unfairly undercutting Boeing.

The WTO has found that EVERY SINGLE AIRCRAFT Airbus produces is illegally subsidized and has consequently found the European Union in violation of its obligation to stop such subsidies. Yet, neither the EU nor Airbus have complied or ever will.

The result: Airbus is currently winning over Boeing in the global arena, thanks to the lavish subsidies Airbus receives. In the 10 years from 2004 to 2013, Airbus has received 8,933 orders while delivering 4,824 aircraft, and Boeing has received 8,428 orders while delivering 4,458 planes.

Last year alone, Airbus received 1,503 orders while Boeing only received 1,355. From 2008 to 2013, Airbus has had a lead in orders in EVERY year except 2012.

Looking further back in time, since 2001 Airbus has had a lead (usually a large one) in orders in EVERY year except 2006, 2007, and 2012.

Recall what happened to the US civilian shipbuilding industry when Congress cut off aid to it: it collapsed, being killed by unfairly subsidized foreign competitors.

But according to de Rugy, the NRO’s editors, and idiot politicians like Sen. Mike Lee, America’s last surviving jetliner maker does not deserve support from the US government, even though Airbus is lavishly subsidized by European governments, and despite the fact that EVERY other major trading power in the world has an export-crediting agency like Ex-Im.

Which leads me to the final, and most ludicrous, claim de Rugy has made (on April 17th). It’s a statement that perfectly and completely reveals de Rugy’s and other free traders’ mindset.

De Rugy has stated that even though other countries credit and subsidize their industries and exporters, the US should not “pursue these self-destructive policies.” She asks:

“Does it make sense to pursue these self-destructive policies just because Germany, South Korea, Japan, and China do so?”

Self-destructive?

So according to de Rugy (and other free traders), supporting your own industrial base and exporters is “self-destructive”! ROTFL, you couldn’t make it up! :)

This statement perfectly reveals de Rugy’s and other free traders’ mindset and delusions.

In their warped world, supporting your own industry and your own exporters is “self-destructive” and suicidal; it’s far better to let them die, be killed by foreign competitors, and become dependent on other countries for the products you need. In the fantasy world of de Rugy and other free traders, imports are preferrable to exports and trade deficits are preferrable to trade surpluses.

In their fantasy world, it’s better to let your industrial base and your own exporters be killed by foreign competitors; you don’t need to make any things yourself, it’s better to import them (on borrowed money).

Of course, anyone with half a brain knows that what de Rugy is saying is utter nonsense.

EVERY country that ever became an economic powerhouse – including Germany, Japan, and China – did so by protecting and supporting its industry and exporters; by preferring trade surpluses over deficits, preferring exports over imports, and putting tomorrow before today.

The US was doing the same thing for all of its history until the 1960s – when the free traders took over.

Since then, 6 million good manufacturing jobs and over 55,000 factories have been lost, replaced by nothing. Real wages have not risen since the 1970s. Entire industries have died, and entire regions of many states have seen a crippling deindustrialization and permanently high unemployment.

NO country has risen to economic preeminence by indulging in free trade fantasies – and America won’t be the first.

But according to de Rugy, Germany, South Korea, Japan, and China are pursuing “self-destructive” policies by protecting and actively supporting their industry! LOL!

This would be strange news to these nations. Last time I checked, all of them had sizable annual trade surpluses with the US: Germany, to the tune of $60 bn a year; South Korea, $16.6 bn; Japan, $88 bn; China, $315 bn.

Also, their industries are thriving, while America is exporting its own industry and jobs overseas, mostly to China. Just who is pursuing “self-destructive” policies here?

And just who the hell is Veronique de Rugy to lecture the Germans, the South Koreans, the Japanese, and the Chinese? She’s just another ivory tower academic “economist” who has never worked a day in a real job, has never spent one day outside the purely theoretical academic world, and has never led anything, let alone built a great nation. Neither has any of her fellow academic economists.

These people have never accomplished anything, let alone built or led a great nation.

According to de Rugy, Germany (along with the other countries she’s targeted – SK, Japan, and China) is pursuing a “self-destructive policy.” Let’s see how it has worked out for Germany:

  • It has the world’s fourth largest, and Europe’s largest, economy.
  • Its industry is thriving and makes some of the finest goods in the world.
  • It has an annual trade surplus of $260 bn, meaning it exports $260 bn more than it imports annually.
  • It exports one-third of all it produces and is the world’s third-largest exporter.
  • It is the world’s third-largest car manufacturer after China and Japan.
  • It has an unemployment rate of only 5.3%, lower than even the official (i.e. fake) US unemployment rate of 6.3%.
  • It has a balanced budget and is a country to whom other European nations turn for loans and aid.
  • Its government is one of the leading stakeholders in Airbus, the largest planemaker in the world.

All of this achieved by a country the size of Montana, with only 80 mn people, one quarter of America’s population.

If this is a “self-destructive policy”, bring it on!

And SK, Japan, and China – the other nations targeted by de Rugy for her diatribe?

South Korea, with a population barely around 30 mn, is now among the 20 wealthiest countries in the world by overall GDP and has a healthy trade surplus with the US. Since the ratification of the Korea-US Free Trade Agreement, Seoul’s trade surplus with Washington has TRIPLED.

Japan’s trade surplus with the US last year, at $88 bn, was the largest trade imbalance ever seen between Japan and the US.

America’s trade deficit with China last year, at $315 bn, was the largest trade deficit EVER recorded in ALL HUMAN HISTORY between any two countries.

Such are the results of the “free trade” policies that de Rugy and other free traders advocate.

De Rugy, as usual, is blowing smoke out of her posterior and blathering nonsense about issues she knows absolutely nothing about. Shame on her, and shame on the NRO for giving her a forum to publish her garbage.

 

The Benghazi Memo Points to a Crime

benghazi_coverup

The newly dislodged memo from the Obama White House is effectively the smoking gun proving that President Obama’s handlers sought to deceive the American electorate in the run-up to the 2012 General Election on the issue of Benghazi. Even the refined spin and disinformation skills of White House Press Secretary Jay Carney weren’t enough to “play in Peoria”; the White House Press Corps audibly giggling at his insistence that the issue is a Republican conspiracy theory focused on “talking points.” That the Obama Administration has no problem lying to the American people in the pursuit of its agenda should be troubling enough, but now we have the issue of their complicity in covering-up the deaths – the murders – of four Americans. Anyone else executing the same rhetorical maneuvers would be charged with obstruction of justice, perjury and accessory to murder.

The memo, dated September 14, 2012 – now being referred to as the “smoking gun” memo – shows that then-White House Deputy Strategic Communications Adviser Ben Rhodes not only notified political operatives David Plouffe and White House Press Secretary Jay Carney (among others), on the email, but that all involved knowingly launched a disinformation campaign about the cause of the Benghazi attacks. In the memo Rhodes writes:

Subject: RE: Prep Call with Susan: Saturday at 4:00 pm ET

Goals:

▪ To convey that the United States is doing everything that we can to protect our people and facilities abroad;

▪ To underscore that these protests are rooted in an Internet video, and not a broader failure of policy;

▪ To show that we will be resolute in bringing people who harm Americans to justice, and standing steadfast through these protests;

▪ To reinforce the President and Administration’s strength and steadiness in dealing with difficult challenges.

The rest is recent history.

Forget for a moment that points one, two and three are absolute and bald-faced lies, rooted in the slash-and-burn political tactic of “say anything to get elected” Progressive politics, and that point four is the stuff of a political campaign memo and not a national security memo meant to inform the American people about the assassination of a United States Ambassador and his security contingent; an act of war. Forget all that for a moment.

What is of note here is: the date of the memo; who was included in the memo; and the fact that the instructions of this memo were carried out over 12 hours later.

That the date of the memo preceded now-UN Ambassador Susan Rice’s Sunday talk show circuit appearances proves that the effort was, in fact, a disinformation campaign. That then-White House Senior Advisor and political strategist David Plouffe, and White House Press Secretary Jay Carney were included in the email proves that there was an illegal coordination between the political and operational offices of the Obama White House. And since the actual deception was executed, just prior to a General Election where there was no clear front-runner, proves that everyone with any weight in the Obama White house – including David Axelrod, Valerie Jarrett and President Obama himself – signed off on the execution of this disinformation campaign.

These three points clear, it would, to borrow a phrase from former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, require a “willing suspension of disbelief” to believe that the erroneous information championed by the White House in the early days after the Benghazi attacks was both as fully informed as it could have been and not politically calculated. In other words, you would need to have the I.Q. of a fig to believe what is currently being shopped by Jay Carney.

The only conclusion possible for any thinking person is that the Obama Administration got caught with its pants down on the issue of al Qaeda-related terrorism by way of the assassination of a US ambassador and his security detail in Banghazi on September 11, 2012, and that in order to support its re-election political narrative – that al Qaeda was “on the run” – they knowingly and willfully lied to the American people. Again, the President of the United States and his handlers willingly lied about the murders of a US diplomat and three security personnel for political purposes.

A side note. The word “murder,” by definition, means:

1. Noun – Law. The killing of another human being under conditions specifically covered in law…

5. Verb – Law. To kill or slaughter inhumanly or barbarously.

On August 9, 1974, facing the prospect of impeachment, President Richard M. Nixon, resigned the presidency of the United States of America. His “high crime and misdemeanor”: His knowledge and suspected complicity in a cover-up of a politically motivated crime that took place at the Watergate. The History Channel sums it up thusly:

“Early in the morning of June 17, 1972, several burglars were arrested inside the office of the Democratic National Committee, located in the Watergate building in Washington, DC. This was no ordinary robbery: The prowlers were connected to President Richard Nixon’s reelection campaign, and they had been caught while attempting to wiretap phones and steal secret documents. While historians are not sure whether Nixon knew about the Watergate espionage operation before it happened, he took steps to cover it up afterwards, raising ‘hush money’ for the burglars, trying to stop the Federal Bureau of Investigation from investigating the crime, destroying evidence and firing uncooperative staff members. In August 1974, after his role in the Watergate conspiracy had finally come to light, the president resigned. His successor, Gerald Ford, immediately pardoned Nixon for all the crimes he ‘committed or may have committed’ while in office. Although Nixon was never prosecuted, the Watergate scandal changed American politics forever, leading many Americans to question their leadership and think more critically about the presidency.”

Of note, the burglars at the Watergate were seeking to facilitate the gathering of information that would give Nixon’s Committee to Re-Elect the President (known derisively as CREEP), an advantage over Democrat nominee George McGovern.

I bring up Watergate in the context of the Benghazi attacks for several specific reasons.

What Did Mr. Obama (and His Principles) Know and When Did He Know It
Just as in Watergate, there are legitimate questions as to when Mr. Obama knew: a) that the attack even occurred; b) that the attack had taken the life of a US ambassador (an act of war); c) that an al Qaeda associated group was responsible for premeditating the attacks; d) that operatives within the CIA, State Department and Pentagon with knowledge of the attacks knew from the first moments that it was a terrorist attack; and e) that approval was given by senior White House staff to deceive the American electorate to shield the President’s reelection bid.

Both Events Resulted in Crimes
Aside from the fact that – both morally and ethically – the Obama State Department was guilty of ignoring critical security assessments for the Benghazi compound calling for tighter and upgraded security before the anniversary of the September 11, 2001, attacks, three specific crimes have striking parallels when Watergate and Benghazi are examined honestly.

Obstruction of Justice
Obstruction of Justice is usually a term used when a criminal or collaborator tries to thwart the investigation of a criminal act. In Watergate, the Nixon White House sought to withhold, destroy, alter and otherwise conceal evidence of wrong-doing from the FBI. With regard to the Obama White House’s response to the Benghazi attacks there was a carefully concerted effort to not only withhold, alter and otherwise conceal evidence of a crime – the murders of four Americans – from an investigative committee of the US House of Representatives, that effort extended to the dissemination of a false narrative – a lie – about the murderous events to the American people in an effort to win an election. Both acts of obstruction of justice – in Watergate and in Benghazi – were executed strictly and exclusively for political purposes.

Accessory to Murder
An accessory charge centers on “a person who assists in the commission of a crime, but who does not actually participate in the commission of the crime as a joint principal.” This charge applies to a plethora of illegal actions, including murder. It is indisputable that US Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens, Foreign Service Information Specialist Sean Smith, and former Navy SEALs Glen Doherty and Tyrone Woods, were “murdered” (see the definition of murder provided above). As a point of order, the Obama Administration, by its own declarations, see the application of justice where terrorism is concerned as a “law enforcement issue,” so much so that the Holder Justice Department has sought to try 9/11 suspects in United States courts. That understood – and by their definition – they have implicated themselves via the purposeful cover-up, for political purposes, in four murders.

Perjury
Perjury is the “willful act of swearing a false oath or of falsifying an affirmation to tell the truth, whether spoken or in writing, concerning matters material to an official proceeding.” In the Watergate scandal, the Articles of Impeachment consist of three articles: “Obstruction of Justice,” “Abuse of Power,” and “Contempt of Congress.” All three of these articles alleged the act of perjury, whether to an empowered investigator or to congressional committees. All three of these “charges” would be applicable to the actions of some of the most senior members of the Obama Administration, including, Mr. Obama himself, regarding the Benghazi attacks.

In all of these comparisons, the parallels are legitimate. Senior members of the Obama White House – if not the President himself – are, with the advent of the Rhodes memo, implicated in obstruction of justice, accessory to murder and perjury. The only thing that separates Watergate from Benghazi is this: no one died in the total of the Watergate event. Four Americans did die in the Benghazi event; an event tantamount to an act of war; an event diminished and manipulated for political purposes.

I have always asked Mr. Obama’s detractors to “dial back” on the more intense charges against the man; charges that often served the Progressive disinformation and smear machines in maligning honest Constitution-loving Americans. Instead, I begged them, please stick to his policies and actions, because, just like his brethren Progressives of yesteryear, if we allow his actions and policies to play out, eventually he will weave enough rope with which he (or they) will eventually hang himself.

Mr. Obama’s Progressive, oligarchic, elitist, political greed has woven that rope. And no, this is not about the color of his skin. It’s all about the “color” of his politics.

“ARTICLE 1

“In his conduct of the office of President of the United States, Richard M. Nixon, in violation of his constitutional oath faithfully to execute the office of President of the United States and, to the best of his ability, preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States, and in violation of his constitutional duty to take care that the laws be faithfully executed, has prevented, obstructed, and impeded the administration of justice, in that:

“On June 17, 1972, and prior thereto, agents of the Committee for the Re-election of the President committed unlawful entry of the headquarters of the Democratic National Committee in Washington, District of Columbia, for the purpose of securing political intelligence. Subsequent thereto, Richard M. Nixon, using the powers of his high office, engaged personally and through his close subordinates and agents, in a course of conduct or plan designed to delay, impede, and obstruct the investigation of such illegal entry; to cover up, conceal and protect those responsible; and to conceal the existence and scope of other unlawful covert activities.

“The means used to implement this course of conduct or plan included one or more of the following…”

– Articles of Impeachment adopted by House Judiciary Committee on July 27, 1974

How Britain Achieved – And Lost – Economic Preeminence – And Lessons For The US

In the mid-19th century, and in the first few decades afterwards, Britain was an unmatched military, economic, colonial, and thus geopolitical colossus, by far the most powerful country in the world. There was no country that was even close to matching the military or economic power of Britain, which had the largest empire in the world, spanning all continents.

So vast was the empire that it was one on which the sun never set – because no matter where the sun was shining at that moment, it was shining on British colonies, dominions, and possessions. So powerful was Britain that she was able to exert influence all around the world and act as the arbiter of world affairs. Thus, the world experienced an era of Pax Britannica.

Why? Because Britain was by far the world’s most powerful country, both economically and militarily.

In the middle of the 19th century, around 1850, Britain was by far the world’s largest producer of coal, pig iron, steel, and warships, consumed the most cotton and coal, and her industrial machines were the most modern and most powerful in the world. This enabled Britain to have a Navy that was far larger than the combined navies of the US, France, Japan, and Russia. Whether the measure was total fleet tonnage or the number of any class of warships, the UK Royal Navy had far more of them than any other Navy in the world.

Britain Loses Her Economic, Military, and Geopolitical Preeminence

Fast forward half a century to 1900, and then to 1913, the eve of World War I, and we see a completely different picture. Britain had, by then, lost its first place in the world, both economically and militarily. The US, Japan, and Germany began building navies rivalling the Royal Navy. The US and Germany also overtook Britain economically by all key metrics. As a result, Britain had to assemble a coalition of countries, the Entente, and enlist the US as an Associated Power to win World War 1 – and contracted a huge debt to win that war, because Germany proved to be a very tough enemy to beat.

Even before then, before WW1, Britain had lost its economic preeminence. Consider:

  • In terms of coal production, Britain dominated the pack in 1870, producing 125 mn tons of coal vs 41 for the US and 42 for the German states (mostly Prussia). By 1900, it was producing 185 mn tons, but the US wasn’t far behind at 143 tons and Germany was at 89 tons. By 1913, the UK was producing only 292 tons, while America’s annual coal output was 517 tons and Germany’s was 277.
  • The UK producted 6.7 mn tons of pig iron in 1870, while the US produced only 1.9 mn tons. But in 1900, the US produced 9.4 tons vs 8.0 mn for Britain. In 1913, the US produced 31.5 mn tons, and Germany 19.3 mn tons, versus only 10.4 mn tons for Britain.
  • The US overtook Britain in terms of steel production even earlier, in 1886, and Germany did so in 1893.
  • In 1871, the efficiency and output of British steel mills was two times that of US steel mills, but by 1891 it was only 50% of America’s steel output.
  • In 1890, the power of steam machines in the US industry was 45% higher than those in the British industry.
  • In 1870, Britain’s share of the global industrial production was 32%; by 1913, it was only 14%. America’s share during the same timeframe rose from 23% to 35.8%, and Germany also overtook Britain, from 13.2% in 1870 to 15.7% in 1913. The US and Germany were simply producing – and earning – more. Period.

Thus, the country that was essentially the world’s biggest coal mine, steel mill, and factory in 1850 was, by 1913, only in third place – not even in the second place – by the key economic metrics of the time! In terms of industrial production, it was lagging behind Germany and far behind the US.

The military consequences of Britain’s economic decline followed, though not immediately or quickly. But inevitably, eventually, they did follow – and they weren’t pretty.

In 1883, Britain had 38 pre-dreadnought battleships, while the US and Japan had zero, Russia had but three, Italy had only 7, Germany 11, and France 19. This means Britain had more battleships – the key weapons of the day – than the next three countries combined!

In 1897, the gap was narrower, though Britain still led the pack: it had 62 battleships in service or construction, but France had 36, Russia had 18, Germany had 12, Italy also 12, the US had 11, and Japan had seven. The next three countries (France, Russia, and Germany or Italy) had more of these warships than the UK.

Matters grew even worse for Britain when she launched HMS Dreadnought, the most powerful battleship in the world at the time, in 1905. The British thought these warships would guarantee them naval supremacy. But they were wrong. Just three years later, the Germans had only three dreadnoughts fewer (9) than the British (12). And other nations were building such warships as well.

Moreover, at Tsushima in 1905, the Japanese Navy showed that a heavily outnumbered fleet can still trash a larger one. Despite being outnumbered two-to-one and not having any significant mineral resources, the Japanese still trounced the Russians in what was one of the biggest military victories in human history, a naval version of the Battle of the Cannae. The Japanese barely lost 3 torpedo boats and 117 men, while the Russians lost their ENTIRE fleet in the Far East – 21 warships – and over 5,100 KIA.

This showed that a smaller, heavily outnumbered fleet, could, in an individual battle, beat a twice larger navy if better led, manned, and equipped.

So Britain’s unquestionable naval supremacy was a thing of the past – ESPECIALLY since the Germans had only slightly fewer dreadnoughts than the British.

As a result, Britain needed to appease the US in the Western Hemisphere, court Japan to make it Britain’s ally in the Far East, and enlist former rivals France and Russia – with whom the UK nearly went to war just years before – as allies to counter growing German power.

By 1914, one hundred years ago, the three countries went to war together – and still couldn’t beat Germany, by now Europe’s preeminent economic and military power. Russia was driven out of the war, and the US had to be enlisted to help win the war. Britain itself was too weak to defeat Germany, even in an alliance with France and (until 1917) Russia.

In the course of World War I, Britain contracted such a huge war debt that it had difficulties paying it down later, and from the world’s banker became America’s debtor.

How Did It Come To Pass?

How did it happen? How did Britain lose its economic and military preeminence?

To some degree, this was because of the obsolete structure, growing technological obsolence, and the conservative mindsets of the leaders of, British industry. And partly it was due to the reunification of Germany, which produced a formidable rival for Britain.

But these obstacles could have easily been overcome. None of these were fatal illnesses.

The REAL cause of Britain’s economic and military decline was its embrace of the poisonous, suicidal, pernicious ideology of “free trade” and the consequent policies.

Until the mid-19th century, Britain – like every country that ever rose to economic preeminence – protected and nurtured its industry with protectionist laws and customs duties.

But beginning in the 1840s, the Parliament began repealing them. In 1846, it repealed tariffs on imported grain (the Corn Laws); in 1850, it got rid of the Navigation Act; and in 1860, it scrapped protective tariffs completely. That’s it – there were no more customs or tariffs on imports to Britain. Anyone was free to export to Britain free of any tariffs.

British industry was thus left without ANY protection against foreign competitors – because no other country had done such a thing. All other countries continued, to various degrees, to protect and nurture their own industry with tariffs as well as non-tariff barriers.

This was especially true of… the US and Germany, the two countries that overtook Britain and took away her crown. The US had high protective tariffs since the 1860s, and Germany since the times of the Customs Union, established in 1834.

Thus, Britain effectively committed unilateral disarmament in the trade arena, which is just as suicidal as disarmament in the military arena.

The problem was simple: US and German companies were protected by these countries’ tariffs and non-tariff barriers to imports, while British companies were left without ANY protection against foreign competitors.

Thus, the US and Germany began flooding the world – including Britain herself – with their products – and achieved greater shares of the world’s industrial production and trade than Britain.

This is not surprising to anyone knowledgeable about economics. For protectionism is the policy of RISING economic powers, while free trade is the policy of DECLINING ones.

Protectionism is the road to wealth, prosperity, and national power, while free trade is the road to deindustrialization, unemployment, and economic stagnation.

Contrary to what free trade ideologues may tell you, NO nation in history has ever risen to economic preeminence by indulging in free trade.

EVERY country that ever became an economic powerhouse did so by protecting, nurturing, and supporting its industry against foreign competition – England under the Acts of Navigation, Britain until 1860, France under Colbert and Napoleon, Germany under the Customs Union and Bismarck, the US from the 1860s to 1960s, postwar Japan, China today .

America Is Losing Her Preeminence – And Fast

In today’s world, America is losing her economic and military preeminence even faster than Britain did in the late 19th century – and America’s edge over the world was never as great as Britain, except the late 1940s and early 1950s.

Just recently, the World Bank predicted that China would overtake the US in GDP by the end of this year. In 2012, the IMF predicted China would leapfrog the US by 2016. The Economist predicts it will happen by 2019.

China is already the world’s top exporter, having surpassed Germany a few years ago, which itself surpassed the US in the early 2000s. China is also the world’s top maker of many goods of all sorts, and also has trade surpluses with many other countries in the world. For example, its trade surplus with France runs at over 30 bn euros per year!

In 2013, the US trade deficit with China – thanks to free traders’ suicidal policies – was the largest annual trade deficit EVER recorded between any two nations, at $315 bn.

The US is also running trade deficits with almost every other country in the world: with crisis-stricken Italy, at $20 bn per year; with Ireland, at $25 bn per year; with Germany, $60 bn per year; with Canada, $32 bn per annum; with Mexico, $61 bn; with Japan, $88 bn per year; with South Korea, $16.6 bn per year.

This is because the US has almost completely disarmed itself unilaterally in terms of trade. Foreign countries exporting goods to the US pay little in the way of tariffs, while US companies trying to export to foreign countries face steep tariffs – and heavily-subsidized competitors – abroad.

Also, many foreign countries, including China and Japan, manipulate their currencies by devaluing them, thus making their exports cheaper abroad (e.g. in the US). Yet, Japan plans to devalue its currency still further, making its exports still cheaper.

Yet, American free trade ideologues oppose taking ANY action against such blatant cheating and such uneven playing field, and demand that the last vestiges of protection for the US industry be scrapped: Buy American Laws, the Export-Import Bank, and the few tariffs that remain.

When, in 2012, GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney pledged to designate China as a currency manipulator, free trade ideologues from the left and the right accused him of wanting to start a trade war… not realizing China has ALREADY been waging a trade war on the US for decades.

The Military Consequences

And just like Britain’s loss of economic preeminence was followed by her loss of military superiority, so is the US losing its last vestiges of military superiority over China (and Russia) as a consequence of committing economic suicide.

The US no longer has a monopoly on any military technology. Its military has always been smaller than China’s – the latter is the world’s most populous country after all – but China’s military is now also much more modern than a decade or two ago.

The PLAN, the Chinese Navy, is already larger than the USN and has more submarines. Their surface combatants are as good as American ones, and their diesel-electric submarines are far quieter than anything the USN has. Their anti-ship missiles are much faster and longer-ranged than America’s sole anti-ship missile, the Harpoon. China also has 100,000 naval mines, against which the USN is nearly helpless as it has only 13 minesweepers – none of them in the regular Navy.

The PLA Air Force has hundreds of modern Generation 4+ fighters, including Flankers and J-10s, plus 389 old but highly agile and fast J-7 fighters. And what does the USAF have? 180 top-notch Raptors and around 300 F-15C/Ds, I’ll give you that much; but its F-16s would not stand a chance against Chinese fighters other than the old J-7. And the F-35, the most expensive, heaviest, and most sluggish “fighter” in the world, will be such a heavy pig it will be inferior to EVERY fighter on the planet.

The PLAAF is now developing TWO stealthy fighters – the J-20 and the J-31 – which, when inducted into service, will make every other fighter in the world, except the F-22 and the Russian PAKFA, obsolete, useless, impotent, and irrelevant.

The PLA’s Second Artillery Corps now has 66-75 ICBMs capable of reaching the US, plus 140 medium- and over 1,600 short-range ballistic missiles and hundreds of ground-launched cruise missiles – weapons which the US does not have and is prohibited from developing.

PLA_ballistic_missiles_range-590x362

The PLA also has a lopsided edge over the US in cyber and space warfare. Its hackers routinely penetrate US government networks with impunity, and it has an arsenal of anti-satellite weapons capable of shooting down all US satellites anytime.

Similarly, China’s anti-ship missiles are so fast, so long-ranged, so numerous, and so cheap that China could easily saturate USN warships with them – and USN defenses are incapable of intercepting supersonic, sea-skimming cruise missiles.

China also has many, many more nuclear weapons than the US DOD and American arms control afficionados are prepared to acknowledge: at least 1,600 (according to Russian General Viktor Yesin), and up to 3,000 (according to Dr Philip Karber, the top nuclear strategist in the Reagan Administration).

And, of course, China’s military has not been infected with political correctness and the open celebration of homosexuality and feminism – unlike the US military.

Let’s face the facts: America’s economic and military dominance is already largely a thing of the past. The US retains an advantage only in a few categories and on a few metrics – and China is now working hard on closing those few gaps as well.

China is now doing to the US what the US itself and Germany did to Britain in the late 19th and early 20th century: overtaking it economically and militarily.

The difference is that, unlike Britain, the US has no friendly power to whom hand over the torch.

So either the US will break free of its “free trade”, “noninterventionism”, “let’s mind our own business”, and “let’s cut the military” fantasies, or it will completely lose its preeminent status to China, with all the consequences stemming from that.

The “Sisterhood of Women” and the Torture of Nigerian Girls

230 teenage girls are still missing after having been kidnapped by Islamists in Nigeria two weeks ago. There are even reports that these girls are being sold into slavery and forced into marriages with their captors.

Where are the news outlets covering this? Has CNN spent the number of hours that they did when covering the missing Malaysian airliner? Where are the “feminists”? The website for the National Organization for Women (NOW), supposedly the voice of women in the US, has absolutely nothing regarding this terrible situation.

Why is this not newsworthy? Perhaps and what may be the only plausible reason is that this is an abduction of Christian schoolgirls by Islamists. Islamist anti-women (and girls) behavior gets a pass even by “feminists” who claim that they care about the “sisterhood of women”.

The “sisterhood of women” is a joke on many levels, but let us leave it at this – if the “feminists” cannot stand up for kidnapped schoolgirls being sold into a life of slavery and forced marriage (aka rape), no matter their religion, then the “feminists” are frauds – you cannot hold some women as more equal than others. In other words, those women in western countries are worth standing up for, but those in Africa and the Middle East are not.

We must also say that these “feminists” not only must be frauds for holding two separate standards – but also racists and cowards. White European women in western democracies should be protected from abuse – but black African or Arab women cannot since the “feminists” may be charged with “cultural insensitivity” or even worse “Islamiphobia”.

This is a horrible and intolerable situation for those families hearing about their loved ones being kidnapped, sold and raped. We must all make a stand with them: check out Twitter #BringBackOurGirls and sign the petition here. Contact Congress and the White House and ask them why we haven’t heard anything from them about this crisis.

This is unacceptable.

Rebuttal of Rand Paul’s straw man claims

ReaganPeaceQuote

The National Review has recently published an article by Sen. Rand Paul wherein the junior Kentucky Senator falsely claims that there is no room allowed for disagreement on foreign policy in the GOP; that we defense conservatives have a “either you’re with us or against us” mentality; that he’s displaying some foreign policy nuance and strategic ambiguity that we fail to appreciate; and then spends the rest of his op-ed railing against the Iraq war, quoting William Buckley’s opposition to it, as if it were the only thing he disagrees with defense conservatives on.

Needless to say, he’s dead wrong on all counts.

As I refute his claims, I shall speak directly to him in this article.

Senator, you claim that:

“You are either for us or against us. No middle ground is acceptable. The Wilsonian ideologues must have democracy worldwide now and damn all obstacles to that utopia.”

That is completely false. No conservative that I know of is saying that, or advocating that the US try to democratize the world (and BTW, THIS hawkish conservative is a sworn opponent of democracy.) Stop making straw man claims, Senator.

Perhaps you are confusing conservatives with the liberals in the Obama admin who, everyday, sip coffee in the WH, point their fingers at a world map, and say which country should be invaded next :)

As for the Iraq war, it was indeed an error, and I opposed it from the start. But your foreign policy differences with us conservatives hardly end with the Iraq war – they barely begin with it, contrary to your false claim that:

“Foreign policy, the interventionist critics claim, has no place for nuance or realism.”

No, Senator. What you are displaying is neither nuance nor realism. What you are displaying is a LIBERAL policy of appeasement of America’s enemies and support for unilaterally disarming the US, and when you are justly criticized for those policies, you backtrack somewhat, thus making yourself sound totally incoherent.

There is a BIG difference between nuance and incoherence.

You are displaying neither nuance or realism. You are displaying a staunch disagreement and break with the entire GOP and the entire conservative movement on the whole gamut of foreign and defense policy issues.

You support deep, crippling defense cuts, up to and even beyond sequestration. You claim defense spending hasn’t been cut nearly enough. You have railed on liberal TV networks against Republicans who disagree. You support closing virtually all US bases abroad (which are crucial for power projection and for reassuring America’s allies) and dramatically cutting equipment spending. You advocate containment of Iran.

You accuse Dick Cheney, most people on the Congressional defense committees, and anyone who advocates striking Iran, of being war-profiteering warmongers. You have claimed that sanctions provoked Japan to attack Pearl Harbor. You were one of the very few Senators to vote AGAINST sanctions on Russia after its invasion of Ukraine, and one of only four GOP Senators (along RINO Dick Shelby, RINO Thad Cochran, and Nebraska’s Mike Johanns) to vote to confirm Chuck Hagel.

You have even claimed that a nuclear-armed Iran would not be a threat to the US or even to Israel. You also consistently oppose all of the Bush admin’s war on terrorism policies that have proven very successful in eliminating terrorists: drones, effective interrogation techniques, GITMO, and so forth.

In one of your recent op-eds for WaPo, just as Russia was beginning to invade Ukraine, you claimed Obama’s appeasement (reset) policy towards Moscow was working very well and “we ought to be proud of that”, and you blamed any troubles in the relationship solely on your fellow Republicans, whom you falsely accused of being “so stuck in the Cold War that they want to tweak Russia.” You whitewashed Russia and absolved it of any blame and urged Americans to be “respectful” towards Moscow.

No, Senator, you are not displaying any “nuance” or “strategic ambiguity” on foreign policy, you are displaying utter ignorance, recklessness, and incoherence at best, and your father’s repugnant Blame America First, Second, and Third beliefs at worst.

You have falsely claimed that your refusal to say clearly whether you would or would not rule out the containment of Iran amounts to “strategic ambiguity” and have wrongly invoked Ronald Reagan as someone who would’ve endorsed such lack of clarity.

Strategic ambiguity means being ambigous about the strategy you’ll employ to achieve your goals – but not about what the goals themselves are. Ronald Reagan was never unclear about those and articulated them clearly, in public and in private. His goal was nothing short of sending Communism and the Soviet Union “to the ash heap of history.”

Your lack of clarity on one of the most important foreign policy issues of our time – whether or not to try to contain Iran – has nothing to do with “nuance” or strategic ambiguity” and would send absolutely the wrong signal to friend and foe alike. America’s allies in the Persian Gulf would be in the dark on whether or not the US, under your leadership (should you be elected President), would stop Iran’s nuclear program. America’s foes would be emboldened by such lack of clarity and would continually test your – and America’s – patience with ever-graver provocations.

Fortunately, as AmSpec’s Jed Babbin says, you stand NO chance of ever getting elected President. A man of your extremely-leftist views stands zero chance of ever being elected President. No matter when you run, you will be justly clobbered, if not in the primaries then in the general election. Because even if you do somehow win the Republican nomination, you will definitely lose in the general election, as nominating you will disenfranchise tens of millions of pro-defense voters.

You might want to take that into account when you decide whether to run for President in 2015-2016 – which will be the biggest decision of your life.

Danish pacifist Hans Kristensen understates the Chinese threat again

Hans M. Kristensen, a lifelong Danish pacifist and advocate of the West’s unilateral disarmament since his earliest youth days, now an anti-nuclear hack at the FAS, seems to be bored these days. He has just penned another blogpost where he stubbornly denies and understates the Chinese nuclear threat, despite all the evidence that the threat is very grave and much more serious than he admits.

He says he has just spotted another Jin class ballistic missile submarine at the Huludao shipyard in commercial satellite imagery, and then repeats his old lies (popular among the advocates of America’s unilateral disarmament) that:

  • China has only 3-4 Jin class ballistic missile subs;
  • that they’re so noisy they’d be easy for the US Navy to detect; and
  • that their JL-2 missiles only have a 7,400 km range and cannot target the US West Coast (let alone the rest of the CONUS) unless they sail “deep into the Pacific Ocean.

All of his claims are utterly false, and have already been disproven two times here at CDN. For those who were not following CDN at the time, though, I’ll show the evidence disproving those claims once again.

Firstly, the number. According to the DOD and private websites, China already has five Jin class submarines, with a sixth one under construction. Also, despite Kristensen’s claim, the next generation of Chinese ballistic missile subs (SSBNs), the Type 096, is not merely in development, it’s already undergoing sea trials and could begin sea patrols as early as this year, according to DOD officials.

Secondly, regarding the JL-2 missile’s range, it is at least 8,000 kilometers, NOT the mere 7,400 kms that Kristensen falsely claims. The 8,000 km figure is confirmed by a wide range of sources, from GlobalSecurity to SinoDefence. As late as 2008, the DOD itself was saying the JL-2’s range was 8,000 kms, and giving maps showing it could reach half of the Continental US. See this map from the DOD’s 2008 report on the Chinese military:

PLA_ballistic_missiles_range-590x362

GlobalSecurity, in fact, says the JL-2’s range may be as much as 9,000 kms or more. Specifically, it says (emphasis mine):

“The missile is apparently roughly comparable in size and performance to the American TRIDENT C-4 long-range multiple-warhead three-stage solid fuel missile missile that is launched from submerged submarines.

The missile will reportedly carry either 3 or 4 MIRV (90kT each) or a single warhead with a yield of 250-1000 kT. Other reports suggest that each missile might be loaded with as many as six warheads.

 Most reports agree that the JL-2 will have a range of about 8,000 km, while some reports suggest that the missile will have an estimated range at least 9,000 kilometers.

But even assuming it’s a mere 7,800 kms, it could still hit Seattle and San Francisco if launched from the Sea of Japan or the Tsugaru Strait (between the Japanese islands of Hokkaido and Honshu), or from a position just east of Honshu Island, west of the 150E meridian.

There go two major US urban areas.

Los Angeles could be hit from launch positions just slightly east of the 150E meridian.

There goes America’s second-largest urban area.

easia_oceania_92_2

Note that 8,000 kms is just the range of the BASIC JL-2 variant. China is now developing, and has repeatedly tested, two newer JL-2 variants: the Jia and the Yi. The former has a range of 12,000, and the latter a range of 14,000, kilometers. This will allow Chinese submarines to strike targets anywhere in the Continental US while being in their homeports.

Thirdly, Kristensen falsely claims that the Jin class is so noisy it would easily be sunk in any war.

This is also patently false. While the Jin class is not nearly as quiet as China’s diesel-electric attack submarines, it is still quiet enough to evade detection by the USN. Why?

Because the USN sucks – especially at anti-submarine warfare, which was always been its Achilles Heel.

During WW2, the waters off the East Coast were safe hunting grounds for the German Navy’s U-boats, so much so that American leaders complained that “the Battle of the Atlantic is being lost” and had to ask the UK and Canada to provide escorts for US ships. During WW2, the USN sunk fewer than 200 German U-boats, while the British and Canadian navies sunk a total of 491.

During the Cold War, the US Navy again showed its utter incompetence and inability to seriously perform ASW missions, with American and allied submarines – even old ones, such as HMCS Okanagan – repeatedly “sinking” US surface warships in exercises, and with Soviet submarines also routinely pinging USN warships.

Matters have only gotten worse since the end of the Cold War. The SOSUS detection system is gone, the S-3 Viking carrier-based ASW aircraft has been retired without replacement, and the fleet of P-3 Orion ASW aircraft has been cut by more than half. Deliveries of the P-8 Poseidon aircraft are very slow, and very few of them are on order. Nor has the USN practiced ASW seriously since the Cold War’s end.

In fact, in the last 3 decades, everyone and their dog has been able to avoid detection by the USN. That includes the Chinese, whose Song-class diesel-electric sub secretly stalked the USS Kitty Hawk in 2006 before suddenly surfacing just 5 miles away from that carrier, in a perfect position to sink it.

For more on the USN’s total incompetence at ASW (and at naval warfare in general), see Roger Thompson, Lessons Not Learned: The Status Quo Culture of the US Navy, Naval Institute Press, Annapolis, MD, 2007, pp. 15-62.

And as the ancient Chinese general Sun Tzu wrote in his Art of War treatise:

“To secure ourselves against defeat lies within our ability, but the opportunity for victory is always provided by the enemy himself.”

Now, the Jin class is nuclear-powered, and somewhat noisier than the Song class, but the waters around Japan –  especially in the Sea of Japan – are quite congested and noisy and are a perfect environment in which Jin class SSBNs could hide.

Hiding in the open ocean – in the vast swathes of the Pacific – would, if anything, be even easier, since the area in which to look for a Jin class sub would be even larger.

And in any case, the Chinese – as stated above – are already testing their new SSBN class, the Type 096, which is much quieter than the Jin class and can carry twice as many ballistic missiles (24 vs the Jin’s 12). It is due to begin sea patrols this year, as DOD officials have stated.

On top of that, China has a new, diesel-electric ballistic missile submarine (the Type 041), which is even quieter than the Song class. It’s virtually undetectable – especially to such a second-rate navy as the USN.

Kristensen also claims – with no evidence to base his claims on – that the DOD’s assessment that the Jin class and the JL-2 will give China “its first credible and survivable at=-sea nuclear deterrent” is overoptimistic from the Chinese perspective. But it’s not, and the US-China Economic and Security Review Commission reached a similar conclusion last year:

“China’s Julang-2 (JL–2) submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM) is expected to reach initial operational capability by late 2013. The JL–2, when mated with the PLA Navy’s JIN-class nuclear ballistic missile submarine (SSBN), will give China its first credible sea-based nuclear deterrent. The JIN SSBN/JL–2 weapon system will have a range of approximately 4,000 nautical miles (nm), allowing the PLA Navy to target the continental United States from China’s littoral waters. China has deployed three JIN SSBNs and probably will field two additional units by 2020. China also is developing its next generation SSBN, the Type 096, which likely will improve the range, mobility, stealth, and lethality of the PLA Navy’s nuclear deterrent.”

Now, why does Kristensen and other anti-nuclear hacks dramatically understate the Chinese nuclear threat, you may ask?

The reason is simple: to mislead the public and policymakers into accepting deep unilateral defense cuts, so that America becomes militarily inferior to and defenseless against China and Russia. This has always been Western pacifists’ goal, and many of them, including Kristensen, have been paid by the Kremlin to advocate the West’s unilateral disarmament.

Lulling the opponent into a false sense of security, and thus causing him to lower his guard, is an old military concept well understood by Sun Tzu, who taught his acolytes (in the Art of War, Chapter I, verses 18-19 and 22):

 “All warfare is based on deception. Hence, when able to attack, we must seem unable; when using our forces, we must seem inactive; when we are near, we must make the enemy believe we are far away; when far away, we must make him believe we are near. (…) If your opponent is of choleric temper, seek to irritate him. Pretend to be weak, that he may grow arrogant.”

America’s top military brass and political class have indeed grown arrogant, so cocksure of their imaginary superiority, not realizing China and Russia have already caught up with the US military in most respects and are now working hard on closing the few remaining gaps.

So all of Kristensen’s claims are utterly false. Jin class submarines can easily avoid detection by the USN; there are currently five of them, with a sixth under construction; they will soon be joined by newer, and much quieter, subs; and their JL-2 missiles, even in their basic variant, have more than enough range to strike the Continental US from the Sea of Japan.

Rebuttal of Tom Collina’s blatant lies about US nukes

nukeexplosion

Last week,the leftist Breaking Defense website published an utterly ridiculous screed by one of the most strident advocates of America’s unilateral nuclear disarmament, Tom Collina, the “research director” of the Arms Control Association, which advocates disarming the US unilaterally and foregoing the deployment of any missile defense systems. (The ACA is funded by several grant-awarding organizations which also advocate America’s unilateral disarmament.

In his screed, Collina makes a lot of lies, all of which, of course, are designed to smear nuclear weapons and mislead the public into supporting that treasonous goal.

Here’s his biggest lie:

“However, at a time of increasingly tight budgets, the more we spend on excess nuclear weapons the less will be available for what Ukraine and NATO need most: economic aid and conventional military assistance.”

Total garbage. Firstly, America does NOT have “excess nuclear weapons” – if anything, it has too few. Russia has a (slightly) BIGGER nuclear arsenal than the US, totalling 2,800 strategic and up to 5,700 tactical nuclear weapons. In fact, Russia has more nuclear weapons (8,500) than the US, Britain, and France combined (8,200). Sources: the Federation of American Scientists and SIPRI’s 2013 Military Balance.

Russia’s strategic nuclear arsenal alone rivals America’s in size, and is complemented by “tactical” nuclear weapons, many of which (the warheads of Russian cruise missiles) can be delivered to the US (because the aircraft and nuclear-powered submarines carrying them can travel intercontinental distances). And these warheads are NOT subject to any arms limitation treaty.

Russia’s ICBM fleet alone can deliver at least 1,684 warheads to the US; Russia’s submarine fleet, another 1,400; and Moscow’s bomber fleet (Tu-95s, Tu-22Ms, Tu-160s), another 2,000 if need be.

On top of that, the US has to deter China, North Korea, and Iran. China alone has at least 1,600 nuclear weapons and continues to build that arsenal up.

Not to mention the fact that Russia, China, NK, and Iran are threats to many but protectors to nobody, while the US has to provide a nuclear umbrella to itself and to over 30 allies around the world, many of whom will go nuclear if the US fails to provide an adequate umbrella. (Already 66% of South Koreans want to do that; meanwhile, Saudi Arabia has ordered nuclear weapons in Pakistan and DF-21 ballistic missiles in China.)

No, Mr Collina, the US nuclear arsenal is not excessive at all – if anything, it is too small.

As for economic aid, that is an obsolete, socialist idea. Ukraine needs to revive its economy by implementing free market policies, NOT begging for handouts.

“Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel warned recently that “tough, tough choices are coming” if the Pentagon is forced to make deep spending cuts, as required by law. He may slash about 30,000 soldiers and retire an aircraft carrier.”

Excuse me? Those are supposed to be “tough choices”? Are you kidding me? Reducing the active duty Army to levels roughly equal to those of 9/11 and retiring a single carrier is not tough – it’s a no-brainer. It’s like picking the low-hanging fruit. (After Hagel’s cuts, the Army will be just slightly smaller than on 9/11, and the American people will have NO appetite or stomach for any more ground wars for a long time to come.)

Aircraft carriers are hugely expensive and extremely vulnerable, and their a/c have very little range. Flattops essentially provide NO return for the huge taxpayer investment they cost. I have already submitted an article dealing with this issue to Proceedings; it awaits the Editorial Board’s review.

It would be far better for the DOD to invest seriously in the single most reliable deterrent against aggression – the US nuclear umbrella – instead of blowing money on oversized land armies and very vulnerable flattops.

“As Crimea shows, these priorities are backwards. We must not allow our increasingly important conventional military forces to be undercut by excessive investments in nuclear weapons.”

Utter garbage as well. America’s conventional forces are not being undercut by the nuclear arsenal, whose total cost (ca. $32 bn per annum) is only 6% of the total military budget (roughly $600 bn in FY2014). Even eliminating it altogether would NOT save America’s conventional forces from sequestration. Sec. Hagel is absolutely right to make the nuclear deterrent a priority for the above reasons. As for conventional forces – don’t make me laugh. The unilateral disarmament movement, of which Collina is an active member, opposes BOTH America’s conventional and nuclear forces. The US nuclear deterrent is merely their first target on their way to disarming America unilaterally.

“And we don’t have to. The United States can stay at nuclear warhead levels set by the 2010 New START treaty and still save billions over the next decade by scaling back and delaying new delivery systems.”

Utter nonsense again. Firstly, New START levels are inadequate to deter Russia and China; second, New START is a worthless and treasonous treaty obligating only the US (not Russia) to cut its arsenal while Moscow is allowed to increase its own; and thirdly, Russia has cheated on EVERY arms control treaty it has signed, INCLUDING New START, as Bill Gertz has recently revealed in the WFB.

And “scaling back and delaying new delivery systems” would be utterly suicidal and a recipe for a Russian nuclear first strike. It would mean having far fewer systems (and thus a much less survivable arsenal), and NO new systems coming online for decades – at a time when existing delivery systems are already reaching the end of their service lives! This means, in practice, complete unilateral disarmament!

The Minuteman ICBM and air-launched cruise missiles will go out of service in the 2020s. The B-52 cannot operate in anything but friendly-controlled airspace. The Ohio class will start leaving service later this decade, and even under CURRENT funding projections, there will be a big gap in the SSBN fleet, with a low of just 10 boats in the early 2020s – unless the SSBN replacement program is hastened.

The cost of replacing them is not huge and will likely be far less than the $355 bn Collina falsely claims – but delaying it any further will significantly increase the price tag.

If a superior U.S. nuclear force did not restrain Moscow from annexing Crimea, how would an even larger force stop further Russian adventurism? It would not. The paradox of nuclear weapons is that they are too destructive to be used, so both sides are “deterred” from doing so.”

These are also blatant lies. The US nuclear arsenal, as proven above, is SMALLER and OLDER than Russia’s, and it was never intended or built to deter Russia from annexing… the Crimea, where it already had almost 30,000 troops and dozens of ships anyway. It was never intended to deter Russia from invading the Ukraine, which neither the US nor the EU had any intention of defending or supporting (and Putin knew it), a country the West has kept out of NATO and the EU and has essentially left to fend for itself.

Putin knew that the West would never offer more than verbal protests and tepid sanctions if he went into Ukraine. Which is why he did that. He knew that Ukraine was outside America’s security perimeter.

The US nuclear deterrent is intended to provide security for the US itself and for its NATO and non-NATO allies (e.g. SK, Japan) – and it has been doing that successfully, without any failure, ever since its inception in 1945.

And if nuclear weapons cannot deter Putin in the Crimea or elsewhere, conventional weapons – which have far less striking and thus deterring power – cannot do that, either. Is Collina suggesting the US deploy its soldiers in the Ukraine and used in a shooting war with Russia? Does he envisage US Army BCTs taking on Russian brigades? Because if he’s not, conventional forces are utterly useless in Ukraine.

As former US Strategic Command leader Gen. Kevin Chilton has stated, conventional weapons cannot replace nuclear arms as deterrents, because the former lack the overwhelming striking (and thus deterring) power of nuclear arms.

Collina also approvingly quotes former Australian foreign minister Gareth Evans, who has falsely claimed that:

“Nuclear-weapons enthusiasts seem to have an inexhaustible appetite for bad arguments.”

In fact, Western anti-nuke activists, the advocates of the West’s unilateral disarmament, seem to have an inexhaustible appetite for bad arguments, lying, and disarming their own countries unilaterally.

And while nuclear weapons might not be useful in Ukraine, there is little the US can do there anyway (who’s suggesting putting US conventional troops there?). But building up the US nuclear arsenal and accelerating missile defense deployment in Europe would do three good things:

1) Increase US and allied security by finally providing a bigger, more adequate, and modernized deterrent;

2) Finally showing strength to Russia after many years of appeasement and unilateral disarmament – which is what emboldened Russia to take one aggressive action after another, culminating in the invasion of Ukraine; and

3) Be a huge geopolitical, diplomatic, and prestige defeat for Russia, which strongly opposes both. It’s time to stop giving Russia what it wants. It would mean Russia has finally lost the veto on US and NATO security matters that Obama gave Moscow in 2009 by cancelling GBI missile defense deployment in Europe. Russia (and other aggressors and bullies) only understand the language of force, and they respect only those who are stronger than them. To deter Russia and have a better negotiating position vis-a-vis Moscow, the US needs to have stronger nuclear AND conventional forces.

BreakingDefense itself approvingly published Collina’s screed and falsely called him:

“Tom Collina, a respected expert in nuclear weapons and arms control…”

Balderdash. Collina is not a “respected expert” on anything, ESPECIALLY not nuclear weapons and arms control. He’s an ignoramus and an ideological advocate of America’s unilateral disarmament. Calling him an expert is an insult to every real expert out there. Being a longtime anti-nuclear activist does not make one an expert. And while I would not call myself one, I know far more about nuclear weapons than he ever will.

Shame on him for lying so blatantly and advocating America’s unilateral disarmament, and shame on BD for publishing his utterly ridiculous screed.

Stop Maligning the Export-Import Bank. America Needs It.

Recently, pseudoconservative Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT) and a few of his Congressional chums, along with the neoconservative Heritage Foundation, have resumed their utterly misguided and dishonest propaganda campaign against the Export-Import Bank, maligning it with a litany of lies. Furthermore, because the Bank’s 2-year operating authorization is set to expire soon, Lee and his fellow pseudoconservative Congressional pals seek to kill the Bank, as does the Heritage Foundation and its lobbying outfit, Heritage Action.

They falsely claim that the Bank hands money out to “politically connected” businesses, skews free markets, and exposes taxpayers to unnecessary loan risk. They falsely claim that over 80% of its loans go to huge corporations like Boeing and General Electric. They malign the Bank as a “crony capitalist” agency.

All of their claims are utterly false, however. In this article, I will correct the record.

The Facts About The Export-Import Bank

Here are THE FACTS about the Export-Import Bank:

  • It does NOT receive any funding from the taxpayers and does not cost them a single cent. In fact, thanks to its interest rates, it returns a profit to taxpayers every year – to the tune of $1 bn last year.
  • It does NOT provide any subsidies to anyone. It only provides LOANS to businesses – which have to be (and are always) fully paid back with interest.
  • Over 90% of its loans are provided to SMALL BUSINESSES, NOT big companies like Boeing and GE.
  • It is NOT a crony capitalist agency, because crony capitalism is the act of providing handouts to those individuals or businesses who are politically connected or sympathetic to a sitting government. The Ex-Im bank provides loans without regard to businesses’ and their owners’ political sympathies or contributions.
  • It is absolutely necessary to help American companies level the playing field on the global market, which is heavily skewed towards foreign competitors who are lavishly subsidized (not merely provided with loans, but outright subsidized) by their national governments. Foreign countries always have (and will, for the foreseeable future) lavishly support their manufacturers, especially in key industry sectors. The only choice for the US is to either do the same or stop aiding its exporters and thus lose its industry entirely over time.
  • Big companies, such as Boeing and General Electric, receive only a small portion of the Export-Import Bank’s loans.
  • Ex-Im has NEVER loaned any money to Solyndra, despite Heritage Action’s utterly false claims.

Ignoring these facts, Sen. Mike Lee nonetheless presses for the Export-Import Bank’s deauthorization and has recently declared in the National Review that “whether the Export-Import Bank provides loans to respected, successful companies like Boeing or failed companies like Solyndra is irrelevant.”

Excuse me? Whom it provides loans to is irrelevant?

Are you on drugs, Sen. Lee?

It matters a lot!

Whom the Bank loans money to matters, because it determines whether the loan is likely to be paid back with interest or not. In the last 27 years, it has always been in all cases.

Sen. Lee protests that it’s irrelevant because loaning money to private companies – even to American exporters – supposedly skews the free market and violates conservative principles.

But as I will demonstrate, this is utter gibberish.

Economic Nationalism Leads To Prosperity, Free Trade To Economic Decline

Supporting American exporters – especially with loans rather than subsidies – does NOT skew free markets and is NOT a violation of conservative principles.

Globally, there are NO free markets – the global marketplace is already heavily skewed… in favor of America’s and American companies’ competitors, that is.

Virtually all major traders around the world, except the US, protect their industry with subsidies, loans, protective tariffs, and in many cases (e.g. China), currency manipulation.

China, India, Japan, Russia, Germany, France, Mexico, Canada – all of them, and many other countries around the world, protect, nurture, and generously aid their industries, especially exporting companies.

The US and the UK are the only major traders in the world who don’t do so and instead indulge in “free trade” fantasies.

It is therefore no surprise that the US has huge trade deficits with almost every other country around the world: with Italy and Ireland, $20 bn annually each; with Germany, over $30 bn annually; with Mexico, over $60 bn per year; with South Korea, $25 bn per year (it has tripled since the ratification of the KORUS free trade agreement).

America’s trade deficit with Japan is the largest America has ever had with Nippon.

America’s trade deficit with China last year was the largest ever recorded in human history between any two countries, at over $300 bn! Not just the largest between the US and China, but the largest trade deficit ever recorded between any two countries!

Such are the disastrous results of suicidal “free trade” policies that the GOP and the Heritage Foundation have promoted for decades.

These folks, including Sen. Mike Lee, are obviously ignorant of the fact that EVERY country which ever became an economic power did so by protecting and supporting its industrial base, especially exporters: England under the Acts of Navigation, Britain until the mid-19th century, France under Jean-Baptiste Colbert and Napoleon, Prussia under the Customs Union, Germany since the 19th century, Japan since the Meiji era, America from the 1790s to the 1960s, China today.

NO country has ever become an economic power, or generated prosperity, by indulging in free trade fantasies. Free trade is only for dupes and idiots.

America’s own history is instructive here. The US used to be, economically, a totally independent country and THE world’s factory of all sorts of goods. Today, it has been largely deindustrialized and is dependent on China for the necessities of life – thanks to suicidal “free trade” policies.

From the Founding Fathers’ era until the 1960s, the US followed the Founding Fathers’ economic preceipts: Manufacturing, not finance or services, is the nation’s economic muscle. Trade surpluses are preferrable to trade deficits. Exports are preferrable to imports. To protect the economy and Americans’ jobs, the US industrial base must be protected by any means necessary. “Made in the USA” should always be preferred.

It is no coincidence that all four Presidents who made it to Mount Rushmore were protectionists.

“Thank God I’m not a free trader”, President Teddy Roosevelt remarked once.

But starting in the 1960s, America began to unilaterally open up its huge market to foreign companies without obtaining reciprocation from foreign countries.

Thus became the deindustrialization, and the unilateral economic disarmament, of America.

And even though it was a Democratic-controlled Congress who passed, and a Democrat President (JFK) who signed, the Trade Promotion Act, it is Republicans who have led the way in this unilateral economic disarmament.

And, predictably, it has proved just as disastrous for America’s well-being as the Democrats’ campaign to unilaterally disarm America militarily.

Indeed, America now has two pro-unilateral-disarmament parties: the Democratic and Republican Parties.

The Democrats, led by Harry Reid and Edward Markey, want to unilaterally disarm America militarily. Republicans, led by Sen. Mike Lee, want to unilaterally disarm America economically.

America has now fewer than 25% of the nuclear arsenal she had in 1991, at the Cold War’s end, and one of its last protections for the US industry is the Export-Import Bank. If that is terminated, the US industrial base is likely to go the way American civilian shipbuilders went after the Reagan Administration cut off aid to them: out of business.

 

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