Not So Honorable?

Generals and Geographic Bachelors

By: G. Murphy Donovan

General David Petraeus illuminates two grand military issues at just the right moment: officer corps character and flag officer performance. Petraeus could be the poster child for a clueless Gilbert and Sullivan character too — “The very model of a modern major-general.” Major-general was the highest rank to which an officer might aspire to in the last century. Grade inflation has created the contemporary glut of four stars, including Petraeus.

David Petraeus gloried in wearing every token of service on his chest, including presumably the good conduct ribbon. Or maybe not! The good conduct medal only goes to grunts, not officers. Clearly, the good conduct award should hereafter be a badge of misplaced military expectations.

Nonetheless; the US Army, West Point, and officers like Petraeus continue to pay lip service to traditional military values and ethics like “duty, honor, and country.” The second imperative seems to have been honored in breach by the former ISAF commander. It’s hard to believe, as it was with Bill Clinton, that Paula Broadwell was a “one off.”

Or maybe the West Point honor oath is more relevant: “a cadet will not lie, cheat, or steal; or tolerate those who do.” Ironically, cheating on your wife seems to be a moral misdemeanor in the Army; while cheating on your trigonometry quiz could lead to dismissal. Alas, Cadet David gets the hat trick here. On the larceny count, Petraeus stole reputation from both sides of his family. His wife Holly is the daughter of a former West Point commandant.

And be not distracted by any “honey trap” nonsense; cheating on wives is a military tradition, not a scandal. Officially, a remote tour is designated “unaccompanied,” but overseas orders seldom require celibacy. Alas, unaccompanied officers are known in the trade as “geographic” bachelors. A senior officer is not busted for cheating; he gets drummed out of the corps for getting caught — too visibly.

And morality only becomes an issue when it embarrasses the Service. In this respect, contemporary military culture is no different than American political culture. If and when, Holly Petraeus, sings a few choruses of “Stand by Your Man,” as did Hilary Clinton; the triumph of the bimbo ethics will be confirmed. Men behave like swine because the women in their lives, mothers and wives, have low or no expectations.

Petraeus not only gives new meaning to terms like “embedded” and “all in” but he and Mrs. Broadwell give a whole new dimension to “ring knockers,” a military euphemism for arrogant military academy graduates. Indeed, if the general was making booty calls with GI Jane in Kabul, the angst in the ranks should be unique. Unlike Europe, Korea, and Vietnam; ordinary soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan are discouraged, if not prohibited, from fraternizing with Muslim women. Like Saigon back in the day, however, apparently the brass gets first run on the imported camp followers. Rank still has perks.

For those who might argue that the military ethos is different, consider who comes to defend Petraeus and the nature of the arguments. Members of both political parties, (e.g. Nancy Pelosi and Lindsey Graham ) and the Media lament the loss of a “great leader” to personal, as opposed to professional, failings.

This is the same limp mantra cooked up for Bill Clinton. Neither defense holds water. Perjury is a crime in any court; and adultery, as Petraeus should know, is a court martial offence under the UCMJ. Note that it is the Republican House who excuses Petraeus from testifying, as scheduled, in the Benghazi fiasco. Republicans can’t seem to court enough ill will these days.

So much for the general’s character.

Defending Petraeus on performance grounds may be an even a shakier argument. The general belongs to the “kiss up, kick down” school of military management, again an import from the political world. Like politicians, political generals insist on deprivations from which they usually exempt themselves.

Recall, that during the hot war in Iraq, serving under a Republican, Petraeus was vilified as General “Betrayus.” Now, under a Democrat administration, as the retreat from Afghanistan unfolds, the former ISAF commander is held up as a national hero. Where are the victories? Is the Arab or Muslim world more pacific or stable today, because Petraeus marched through?

Even insipid goals like “transition” are a shell game. We still have troops in Iraq; and after 2014, a similar contingent will remain in Kabul. The true accomplishments of all those small wars in the Muslim world to date are twofold; NATO has simplified the Islamist target set and enabled the triumph of radical religious politics. Indeed, American troops are now killed by our so-called “moderate” Muslim allies; surely a comfort to Islamists.

The great failure of senior officers like Petraeus is candor, or more bluntly, integrity. America cannot do for Muslims what Islam is unwilling to do for itself. That fundamental ground truth is ignored or spun by senior military officers and politicians alike.

And are we to believe that Petraeus reinvented the Army with a novel counterinsurgency (COIN) doctrine? The test of any doctrine is achievement; or to use a word absent from flag officer vocabulary these days, the test of military theory is victory. There are only two routes to change in the Ummah; reform or defeat. Neither is evident after 50 years of futile American sacrifice.

Politics and yearly troop rotations are at odds with the Petraeus doctrine. The force ratios required by the Army Manual (FM 3-24) will never be achieved with the current force structure; and brief, but repeated, deployments are at odds with consolidating any annual gains or winning any “hearts or minds.”

Problems with academic theory begin with flawed assumptions; nearly all conflicts in the Muslim world are civil wars, not insurgencies.The Army doesn’t have a foreign civil war mandate. Unfortunately, the Marine Corps has bought into the COIN nonsense too. The elimination of the draft makes it easier for politicians and generals to play fast and loose with national treasure and volunteer lives, another ground truth ignored by Petraeus doctrine.

Before leaving the performance report, we might look at some of the small steps that allowed Pataeus to advance from Kabul to Langley. First was that borderline anti-Semitic CENTCOM study commissioned by Petraeus that suggests that resolving the Israel question is key to abating Muslim rage. Nonsense!

Israel/Palestine is a regional problem; Islamism is a global conflict. Secular governments worldwide are the real Islamic targets. Israel is a convenient distraction, a political stalking horse. And Tel Aviv has made a host of territorial concessions since defeating the Arab armies, all to no avail. Elimination of Israel is the oft-stated goal of Palestinians and Islamists alike.  Appeasement in the Levant could only hasten another Holocaust. Petraeus is no friend of Israel, and that alone made him a poor choice for CIA.

Israeli Palestinians are better off than any similar group living in any Arab country, including Jordan and Lebanon. Indeed, at one time or other, Jordanians, Egyptians, and Lebanese have successfully exterminated militant Palestinians. Israel’s tolerance of Arabs and Islam, by any measure, is enlightened.

The CENTCOM study and Petraeus clearly catered to existing bias, a kind of closet anti-Semitism, among the American academic Left and Obama acolytes. Petraeus subsequently consolidated his politically correct posture on Islam by taking a knee in Afghanistan. American women in uniform were encouraged to wear the hijab while on patrol. Pandering now trumps American troop safety as America slinks out of South Asia.

By such baby steps does an officer, with little or no Intelligence experience, advance from Princeton to the CIA. Petraeus garnered an Agency sinecure with a wet finger in the political winds. He was politically correct on all things Islamic. He was reliable — until Paula came along.

So we are left to ponder the merits of several hagiographic Petraeus biographies. In retrospect, Paula Broadwell’s powder puff pastiche, All In (sic): the Education of David Petraeus  is at once an inside joke and reminiscent of Doris Kerns Goodwin’s methodology and subsequent biography of Lyndon Johnson — another politician who quit in the middle of a tedious war. The literary world needs to stop calling tomes about the living, “valentines.” A more appropriate classification would be toilette biography.

G. Murphy Donovan is a Vietnam veteran and former Intelligence officer who writes frequently about national security, military affairs, and politics.

Read more: http://www.americanthinker.com/2012/11/generals_and_geographic_bachelors.html#ixzz2CJxp9fS8

Survivor Tribute

A Holocaust survivor returned an American flag to the family of a soldier who had given him the gift, the sole memento from his war-torn childhood that he kept for 67 years.

Stephan Ross, now 81, was ten years old when U.S. serviceman Steve Sattler came across him, emaciated and terrified at the Dachau concentration camp in Germany.

After handing over his rations to the boy during the 1945 liberation, Sattler then gave the ten-year-old his handkerchief decorated with the Stars and Stripes.

Never forgotten: Stephan Ross (pictured in striped jacket) hugs family of soldier Steven Sattler who liberated him from Dachau concentration camp, 67 years ago. Left, a picture of the late Mr SattlerStephan Ross (pictured in striped jacket) hugs family of soldier Steven Sattler who liberated him from Dachau  concentration camp, 67 years ago. Left, a picture of the late Mr Sattler
Poignant memento: Stephan Ross, dressed in a uniform like one he was forced to wear in the Nazi camps, kisses the handkerchief-flag that was given to him by an American soldier in 1945Stephan Ross, dressed in a uniform like one he was forced to wear in the Nazi camps, kisses the handkerchief-flag that was given to him by an American soldier in 1945

On Veteran’s Day this Sunday, Mr Ross had the opportunity for the first time to thank the family of the man who rescued him.

He hugged the children and grandchildren of Mr Sattler during the emotional meeting at the State House in Boston. Mr Ross wore a striped jacket and hat, like the camp uniform, along with his identification number.

The 81-year-old gave Mr Sattler’s family a boxed flag, saying: ‘God Bless, America’.

After the War, Steve Sattler had returned to live quietly on his farm in Unionville, Michigan, according to the Boston  Globe. The father-of-six and Purple Heart recipient passed away in 1986 at the age of 70.

Mr Ross, who now lives in Newton, Massachusetts, had spent the War in ten different concentration camps.

Loving tribute: The children of soldier Steve Sattler (l-r) Gwen Allanson, Stephanie Sattler and James Sattler meet Stephan Ross to show him a picture of their late father after he gave them an American flagThe children of soldier Steve Sattler  (l-r) Gwen Allanson, Stephanie Sattler and James Sattler meet Stephan Ross to  show him a picture of their late father after he gave them an American flag
Symbolic gesture: Mr Ross's son and Boston City Councillor Michael Ross holds up the flag his father received from an American soldier at Dachau concentration camp in Germany almost seven decades ago Mr Ross’s son and Boston City Councilor Michael Ross holds up the flag his father received from an American  soldier at Dachau concentration camp in Germany almost seven decades ago

Ever since being liberated by the Allies on  April 29, 1945, Mr Ross had always  wondered what had happened to the soldier  who had shown him kindness.

GATEWAY TO EVIL: THE ATROCITY OF  DACHAU CONCENTRATION CAMP

The concentration camp at Dachau, near Munich  in Germany, was founded in 1933 by Nazi commander Heinrich Himmler.

The first prisoners were mainly political opponents of the Nazi regime along with Gypsies and homosexuals.

The camp was expanded under horrific working conditions by prisoners – and operated until the fall of the fascist regime in 1945. Thousands of prisoners were worked to death.

With the increased persecution of the Jews,  the number of prisoners at the camp increased in the late Thirties.

It was the original model for all concentration camps – divided into barracks, workshops and areas where medical experiments took place and the crematorium. However it is believed that rather than gas chambers, the Nazis used this area as a firing range and gallows for most prisoners.

Those who were deemed too sick or old to work were sent to Hartheim in Austria where they faced the gas chambers. Thousands of prisoners from Dachau died in this way.

Hundreds of prisoners died or were left disabled during horrific medical experiments at Dachau which included malaria, hypothermia and tuberculosis trials, new medications and methods to stop excessive bleeding.

More than 188,000 prisoners passed through the heavy gates of Dachau in its 12-year history. Although 28,000 were known to have died, there were many, many more victims who have never been accounted for.

The octogenarian, who came to the U.S. as an orphan in 1948, even went on TV show Unsolved Mysteries in the hope of finding the man.

In August this year, he received a phone call  from a woman named Brenda Clark – Mr Sattler’s grand-daughter – who said Mr  Ross’s story resembled one she had been told.

Mr Sattler had spoken little about his time during the liberation of Dachau.

However he did once tell his daughter Gwen Allanson that he had given food and ‘something else’ to a young boy at the German concentration camp.

Mr Sattler did not say what he had given the boy, only that he ‘hoped it helped him’.

After the families compared details of Mr Sattler’s service with Mr Ross’s memories, the personal histories matched up.

Mr Ross, a retired psychologist, told the Globe: ‘I recalled thinking: ”If this is true, there is some God in this world.”’

He shared his stories of being held in a Nazi prison camp which left him starved and beaten within an inch of his life.

Mr Ross lost his entire family in the Holocaust apart from one brother.

Sattler was a member of the 191st Tank Battalion who were part of the troops who liberated Dachau, about ten miles northwest of Munich in southern Germany.

The U.S. forces who breached the gates of Dachau in April, 1945 were faced with thousands of starving prisoners, many near death. The soldiers also came across the gruesome discovery of 30 railroad cars piled high with bodies.

Attribution: Daily Mail

POW Revelations

To an untrained eye, the small room must have looked like a telephone exchange. A console of sockets and plugs was placed on top of a table, at which was sat an operator who was wearing a pair of headphones.

Occasionally, he would swap some of the plugs around, but there would be little more movement than that.

Wearing the uniform of a British sergeant-major, the operator was, however, no telephone operator. In fact, he was taking part in one of the most secret operations ever conducted during World War  II.

Spy game: British officers listened to conversations of German prisoners-of-war incarcerated in Trent Park House, a Hertfordshire mansion British officers listened to conversations of  German prisoners-of-war incarcerated in Trent Park House, a Hertfordshire  mansion

The man was part of a team of eavesdroppers — fluent in German, quite often Jewish, and more than likely to have fled from Nazism to Britain during the Thirties — who were listening to conversations of German prisoners-of-war incarcerated in Trent Park, a Hertfordshire mansion that housed the Combined Services Detailed Interrogation Center, or CSDIC.

Between 1939 and 1945, no fewer than 10,191  German and 567 Italian prisoners passed through Trent Park and its two related POW listening centers. The operation was unimaginatively nicknamed ‘Operation Eavesdrop’, and what the listeners heard appalled them, as the German soldiers, sailors and airmen reminisced about committing some of the most barbaric atrocities imaginable.

They would recall machine-gunning civilians  from their fighter planes, or knowingly torpedoing boatloads of children. They would laugh about raping Russian women and Jews before slaughtering them, or wiping out inhabitants of Russian villages with grenades and petrol.

As one CSDIC officer said at the time: ‘If we didn’t know why we were fighting the war before this, we sure as hell knew afterwards.’

‘I had an hour to spare and we went to a kind of barracks and slaughtered 1,500 Jews. There were some 20 men there with tommy-guns. It only took a second, and nobody thought anything of it.’

Recordings and transcripts were made of these conversations, and then, for several decades, they remained under lock and key, before they were sent to the National Archives, where they gathered  dust.

It was not until 2001 that they were finally unearthed by a German historian called Sönke Neitzel, who quickly realized that the conversations constituted some of the most important testimony to have emerged from the war.

And, most controversially of all, Dr Neitzel realized that the CSDIC transcripts gave the lie to the notion that the regular  German armed forces — the Wehrmacht — had more or less behaved honorably, and that it was only the fanatical members of the armed SS that had committed the most repellent of war crimes.

After working on the transcripts for a decade, Dr Neitzel published his book about the recordings in Germany last year, and now it is published in Britain.

The fact that ordinary German soldiers were likely to be complicit in acts of barbarity has shocked modern German readers.

The fact that ordinary German soldiers were likely to be complicit in acts of barbarity has shocked modern German readers
Onslaught: Nazi soldiers rush into action against Red Army positions during the invasion of the Soviet Union in this October 1941 Nazi soldiers rush into action against Red Army positions during the invasion of the Soviet Union in this October 1941

What emerges most strongly in the recordings, is the fact that many German soldiers did not see their acts as crimes, no matter how horrific. As one soldier put it: ‘the fact that we were soldiers was enough to justify any crimes and corruption, and was sufficient basis for an existence in hell.’

Between them, the German Army, Navy and Air  Force most successfully did create their own version of hell, and they created it all over Europe. A Luftwaffe corporal called Müller recalled how he had travelled around the Ukraine by truck, from which he had observed women being forced to work.

‘They were employed on road-making,’ he told his companion in his cell at Trent Park. ‘Extraordinarily lovely girls; we drove past, simply pulled them into the armored car, raped them and threw them out again. And did they curse!’

These women were fortunate compared with those living in the Belgian village of Hilay, who found themselves at the receiving end of the anger of Private Franz Diekmann and his comrades. The Germans had just lost one of their men to a ‘terrorist’.

‘We fired MGs [machine guns] into the midst of thirty Belgian women,’ Diekmann said. ‘They wanted to raid the German supply dump. But they were chased away in no uncertain manner.’

When Diekmann’s cellmate asked whether the women managed to run away, Diekmann simply replied: ‘No, they were all dead.’

Even women in Britain were not safe from the murderous impulses of members of the Wehrmacht. The operators at Trent Park once heard two Luftwaffe officers sharing tales of how they had machine-gunned civilians in British towns.

‘We once made a low-level attack near Eastbourne,’ recalled a pilot called von Greim. ‘When we got there, we saw a large mansion where they seemed to be having a ball or something; in any case we saw a lot of women in fancy-dress, and an orchestra. We turned round and flew towards it. The first time, we flew past, and then we approached again and  machine-gunned them. It was great fun!’

Similar atrocities were carried out by other members of the Luftwaffe. First Lieutenant Hans Harting from Fighter Wing 26 recalled how he had raided southern England in 1943: ‘We were ordered to fire at everything, except military targets,’ he claimed. ‘We killed women and children with baby carriages.’

At sea, submariners were just as likely to kill children as from the air. In September 1940, the vessel U-48 spotted the civilian passenger ship the City Of Benares, which was carrying 90 evacuee children from Britain to Canada.

Target: Passenger ship City of Benares was sunk by a German U-Boat in September 1939 as it was taking evacuee children to CanadaPassenger ship City of Benares was sunk by a German U-Boat in September 1939 as it was taking evacuee children to Canada
Lucky ones: Two survivors from the unprovoked attack on the evacuee ship the City of Benares Two survivors from the unprovoked attack on the evacuee ship the City of Benares
Prisoners: German soldiers are marched through an English village to a PoW camp in June 1944 German soldiers are marched through an  English village to a POW camp in June 1944

On board the U-boat was a corporal called Solm, who later claimed that the Germans knew that the boat was carrying children, and yet they still decided to attack.

‘We bagged a kiddie ship!’ Solm triumphantly told his Trent Park cellmate. ‘Six thousand tons. We heard on the radio what was on board. No one survived.’ In fact, 13 of the children did survive, but 260 of the 407 on board were killed.

Often during the conversations, the German prisoners justified their crimes by claiming that they were a reaction to the brutalities carried out by the Russians.

An army Lieutenant called Leichtfuss recalled how he had come across six dead German soldiers on the Eastern Front who had had their tongues nailed to a table, as well as another dozen who had been thrown down a well and stoned to death.’These incidents were taken for a reason for repaying it tenfold, twenty and a hundredfold,’ said Leichtfuss.

‘When a small detachment of about ten or 15  [enemy troops] was captured there, it was too difficult for the soldier to transport them back 100 or 120km. They were locked in a room and three or four hand grenades were flung in through the window.’

Such reprisal killings by the army were not uncommon, especially in Russia. Attacks by partisans often meant nearby villages were razed, and their inhabitants slaughtered.

Private Müller recalled how he and his comrades disobeyed an order to kill every tenth man in a village, and decided  instead to simply kill everybody.

Brutality: A Nazi firing squad guns down prisoners in Poland in 1941 A Nazi firing squad guns down prisoners in  Poland in 1941
Warmongers: This photo, taken on April 19, 1943, shows a group of Jews, including a small boy, being wscorted from the Warsaw Ghetto by German soldiersThis photo, taken on April 19, 1943, shows a  group of Jews, including a small boy, being escorted from the Warsaw Ghetto by German soldiers

‘We filled beer bottles with gas,’ he said, ‘and put them on the table and, as we were going out, we just threw hand grenades behind it. Immediately everything burned merrily — all roofs were thatched.

‘The women and children and everyone were shot down; only a few of them were partisans. I never took part in the shooting unless I was sure that they were proved to be partisans; but there were a lot of fellows who took a delight in it.’

The idea that mass murder could be ‘fun’ was also shared by some members of the Luftwaffe. Even in the very earliest days of the war, during the invasion of Poland, members of the German air force would take similar delight in mowing down people and horses from the air.

‘On the first day, it seemed terrible to me,’  said Lieutenant Pohl, a Luftwaffe airborne observer, ‘but I said to myself, “Hell! Orders are orders”. On the second and third days I felt it didn’t matter a hoot, and on the fourth day I enjoyed it. But, as I said, the horses screamed.  I hardly heard the plane, so loud did they scream. One of them lay there with  its hind legs torn off.’

Of course, the most infamous crime to have occurred during the war was the Holocaust, and although much of it was carried out by units such as the SS, the Gestapo, and the SD — the SS Security Service — there were men and officers of the Wehrmacht who also participated.

When talking in their cells at Trent Park, German officers would often try to convince themselves it was only really the SS that carried out mass killings, but there were some, such as Colonel Eberhard Wildermuth, who knew better.

‘In carrying out the mass executions, the SS did things which were unworthy of an officer,’ said Wildermuth, ‘and which every German officer should have refused to do, but I know of cases where officers did not refuse, and did do them, those mass executions. I know of similar things that were done by the army, and by officers.’

One of them was a First Lieutenant in the Luftwaffe called Fried, who was flying transport planes during the campaign in Poland. ‘I was at Radom once,’ he was recorded saying, ‘and had my midday meal with the Waffen SS battalion who were stationed there. An SS captain or whatever  he was said, “Would you like to come along for half-an-hour? Get a tommy-gun and let’s go”.

‘So I went along. I had an hour to spare and we went to a kind of barracks and slaughtered 1,500 Jews. There were some 20 men there with tommy-guns. It only took a second, and nobody thought anything of it.  They had been attacked at night by Jewish partisans and there was a lot of indignation about those damned Poles. I thought about it afterwards — it wasn’t very “pleasant”.’

When Lieutenant Fried was asked by his cellmate, a First Lieutenant Bentz, whether he had fired as well, Fried replied:  ‘Yes I did. Some of the people who were inside there said, “Here come the swine”, and swore and threw stones and things at them.

‘There were women and children there too! . . . There were whole families, some were screaming terribly and some were just stupid and apathetic.’

Although participation by members of the Wehrmacht in the ‘Final Solution’ was relatively infrequent, Fried’s admission shows the German armed forces knew exactly what the SS was doing to the Jews.

Soldiers and officers in the Army often witnessed killings first hand, and in the CSDIC recordings,  feelings of regret or sorrow are rarely expressed. One who witnessed a mass shooting of Jews was Major General Walter Bruns, who watched a pit fill up with slaughtered families.

‘I can still see it all in my memory,’ said  Bruns in his cell. ‘A pretty woman in a flame-colored chemise. Talk about keeping the race pure! At Riga, they first slept with them and then shot them to prevent them from talking.’

German Soldiers, sailors and airmen were caught by operatives at Trent Park listening centre in the UK reminiscing about committing some of the most barbaric atrocities imaginableGerman Soldiers, sailors and airmen were caught by  operatives at Trent Park listening centre in the UK reminiscing about committing  some of the most barbaric atrocities imaginable
Although participation by members of the Wehrmacht in the 'Final Solution' was relatively infrequent, the transcripts show German troops knew exactly what the SS was doing to the JewsAlthough participation by members of the Wehrmacht in  the ‘Final Solution’ was relatively infrequent, the transcripts show German troops knew exactly what the SS was doing to the Jews

Nazi concepts such as physical and racial purity were not just expressed by the SS. The chief quartermaster of  submarine U-187, Heinrich Skrzipek, maintained that ‘cripples should be put out of the way painlessly’.

‘It’s just a question of not being sensitive,’ Skrzipek insisted. ‘After all, we aren’t women! . . . Because the half-wits are the very people who have very large families and for one mental-defective you could feed six wounded soldiers. Of course you can’t please everybody. Several things don’t suit me, but it’s a question of the good of the people as a whole.’

But it appears Nazi ideology was not the chief motivating factor that made ‘ordinary’ members of the German armed forces commit atrocities. Dr Neitzel argues they took part in such actions because they saw it as their job, and that war normalizes violence and creates a context in which men can commit bloodthirsty acts with little or no conscience.

Although war crimes were undoubtedly committed by all sides during the war, the  Trent Park transcripts reveal that the German military machine was uniquely  brutal.

This tendency was even identified by the commander-in-chief of the Germany Army, General Walter Brauchitsch, who lamented the behavior of some his officers during the Polish campaign. ‘The image that results,’ he wrote, ‘is that of a pack of marauding mercenaries who cannot be reprimanded sharply enough.’

Thanks to the recordings made in Hertfordshire 70 years ago, it is an image that remains today.

Attribution: Guy Walters

Protect the Right…Hooyah!

 Breitbart.com reports that retired Navy SEAL Ben Brink told Fox News that he is reaching out to former special operations personnel to help monitor polls, especially in areas where voter intimidation has been reported.

“The nation saw the video of members of the Black Panthers in Philadelphia intimidating people trying to vote in 2008. We are going to try and make certain that nothing like that happens this year,” he said on the Larry Mendte show, according to a report at Phillymag.com.

“Don’t let the bravado fool you,” Mendte wrote. “The mission, according to the Captain, is to observe and report, not to engage. ‘We are going to watch for intimidation, videotape it, if possible, and report it to the proper authorities’.”

“Brink claims to have over a hundred former Army Rangers, Navy Seal, Delta Force, Green Berets and others who have volunteered for duty. The idea of Navy Seals and Black Panthers getting into it at a Philly polling site gives a whole new incentive for casting a ballot,” the report added.

“Our guys aren’t easily intimidated,” Brink added.

Earlier Tuesday, we reported that the New Black Panther Party showed up at the same Philadelphia polling place where two baton-wielding activists were located in 2008.

Other reports say the New Black Panther Party is making its presence known in Ohio as well.

Conservatives on Twitter enjoyed hearing that America’s heroes are once again stepping up to protect freedom.

“Special Forces in Ohio, Navy Seals in Philly to keep Black Panthers from harming & Intimidating Voters. What’s THAT tell you America?” tweeted “Terri.”

“BREAKING! SEALS have arrived at polling places in Phillie where Black Panthers are intimidating voters! God bless our Navy SEALs,” exclaimed “dq24.”

According to Phillymag, the special operations veterans will be going to cities like Cleveland, Miami and Las Vegas, and Brink assured Mendte that voters have nothing to fear from the highly-trained operatives.

“Voters showing up to the polls probably won’t even notice they are there. These men are trained to be ghosts,” he said.

One Shot, One Kill

DARPA Invests in One-Shot Rifle System Capable Under Varying Conditions for Snipers

from:  at The Blaze

DARPA Awards $6 Contract for Development of One Shot Rifle System for Snipers

(Image: Wikimedia)

The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), the military’s research arm, has awarded a San Diego company a multi-million dollar contract to develop a rifle-mounted system that would allow snipers to better hit targets in one shot, as this single shot could be the only one they get.

In its Advanced Sighting System Project, DARPA states that its goal is to “enable snipers to accurately hit targets with the first round, under crosswind conditions, day or night, at the maximum effective range of the weapon.”

DARPA Awards $6 Contract for Development of One Shot Rifle System for Snipers

(Image: DARPA)

For its next-generation, One Shot XG Phase, DARPA is looking for a “significantly smaller ‘field-ready system’ that can be ‘clipped-on’ directly to the weapon, eliminating the need for a spotter/observer in future sniper operations.”

To accomplish this, DARPA recently awarded Cubic Defense Applications a $6 million contract.

“If military snipers could neutralize enemy targets with a single round, they could potentially save many lives,” Steve Sampson, vice president of Advanced Programs for Cubic Defense Applications, said in the company’s statement. “One Shot XG seeks to allow our snipers to immediately obtain downrange crosswind, direction and range to target to provide ballistic corrections.

Using a crosswind measurement algorithm and electro-optic and laser designs, Cubic and its partners expect to take a different approach to this sniper program.

“Cubic has developed both systems and components, from fiber lasers and quantum well modulators to smart cards. One Shot XG will directly benefit from at least a decade of development geared towards state-of the art field-proven MILES combat training products,” Tony Maryfield, program manager and principal investigator for the One Shot XG product development at Cubic, said in a statement.

Attribution: Businessweek

Fire the Laser

Once the stuff of science fiction and James Bond movies, the U.S. Navy is now just two years away from arming it’s ships with the first generation of ‘directed energy’ laser weapons.

The weapons are designed to track and fire on threats to a warship that could include anything from armed drones and small ‘swarm’ boats to incoming missiles and aircraft.

According to Rear Admiral Matthew Klunder, the chief of the Office of Naval Research, a  series of successful tests in recent months have enabled the Navy to halve its predicted timeline for mounting laser weapons on vessels.

‘We’re well past physics,’ he told WIRED.com.

‘We’re just going through the integration  efforts… Hopefully that tells you we’re well mature, and we’re ready to put these on naval ships.’

In April 2011 the Navy released a video of a test in which its prototype Maritime Laser Demonstrator blasted a hole in the engine of a small boat at sea off the California coast, leaving it dead in the water.

In July of this year, an officer in the Solid-State Laser Technology Maturation (SSL-TM) program said the Navy believed it was ‘time to move forward with solid-state lasers and shift the focus from limited demonstrations to weapon prototype development and related technology advancement.’

Solid-state lasers are one of several  different types of laser-based weapons systems currently being developed by the Navy and other military services in conjunction with major defense contractors.

The military has spent hundreds of millions on the development of the various systems, but once installed, the government predicts they will be relatively cheap to operate since they don’t use conventional munitions.

A shot from a laser weapon is estimated to  cost the Navy the equivalent of less than a dollar, compared to short-range air-defense interceptor missiles which cost between $800,000 and $1.4 million  each.

Up until now one of the Navy’s key concerns  with lasers has been how to generate  enough energy to fill the laser gun’s magazine,  however Klunder says that it is no longer an issue.

‘I’ve got the power,’ said Klunder, who spoke during the Office of Naval Research’s biennial science and technology conference.

‘I just need to know on this ship, this particular naval vessel, what are the power requirements, and how do I integrate that directed energy system or railgun system.’

With the technology almost now in place, there does however remain a concern over funding to make the laser weapons a reality. Admiral Mark Ferguson, vice chief of naval operations, has warned that ‘research and development is part of that reduction’ in defense budgets currently scheduled to take effect in January.

Attribution: Mail Online

Called It Off

More than a few people need to go to prison over Benghazigate, including those in the press who are aiding and abetting this administrations cover up.

While reading this article, assuming you can think of anything beyond seething anger over the needless American deaths, notice how the consulate has magically changed to a CIA compound and CIA safehouse. HMMMMM. Where have heard that before?

Bombshell:  Benghazi Targets Painted, Air Support Overhead – Obama Calls Off  Strike

by:

In piecing together the details of the Benghazi attack up the U.S. consulate,  it is becoming clear that there were U.S. Special Operations forces on the  ground, at least two drones overhead and lasers being used to paint at least one  target.  The question then becomes, if these things were in place for a strike  against attackers, who called it off?  There can only be one answer, the  commander-in-chief Barack Obama.

Fox News reports on the laser being used to paint the  target:

At that point, they called again for military support and help because they  were taking fire at the CIA safe house, or annex. The request was denied. There  were no communications problems at the annex, according those present at the  compound. The team was in constant radio contact with their headquarters. In  fact, at least one member of the team was on the roof of the annex manning a  heavy machine gun when mortars were fired at the CIA compound. The security  officer had a laser on the target that was firing and repeatedly requested  back-up support from a Spectre gunship, which is commonly used by U.S. Special  Operations forces to provide support to Special Operations teams on the ground  involved in intense firefights.

This went on for four hours and the White House was able to watch this all  take place live.  Two drones were above recording what was taking place and it  seems one was called in to relieve the other, presumably because of fuel issues.  A former Delta operator over at BlackFive writes:

Having spent a good bit of time nursing a GLD (ground Laser Designator) in  several garden spots around the world, something from the report jumped out at  me.

One of the former SEALs was actively painting the target. That means that  Specter WAS ON STATION! Probably an AC130U. A ground laser designator is not a  briefing pointer laser. You do not “paint” a target until the weapons  system/designator is synched; which means that the AC130 was on station.

Only two places could have called off the attack at that point; the WH  situation command (based on POTUS direction) or AFRICOM commander based on  information directly from the target area.

If the AC130 never left Sigonella (as Penetta says) that means that the  Predator that was filming the whole thing was armed.

If that SEAL was actively “painting” a target; something was on station to  engage! And the decision to stand down goes directly to POTUS!

There is also the issue of the former Navy SEAL Tyrone Woods and a small team  that ignored orders to stand down after they requested permission to go and  help.

Former Navy SEAL Tyrone Woods was part of a small team who was at the CIA annex about a mile from the U.S. consulate where Ambassador Chris Stevens and  his team came under attack. When he and others heard the shots fired, they  informed their higher-ups at the annex to tell them what they were hearing and  requested permission to go to the consulate and help out. They were told to “stand down,” according to sources familiar with the exchange. Soon after, they  were again told to “stand down.”

Woods and at least two others ignored those orders and made their way to the  consulate which at that point was on fire. Shots were exchanged. The rescue team  from the CIA annex evacuated those who remained at the consulate and Sean Smith,  who had been killed in the initial attack. They could not find the ambassador and returned to the CIA annex at about midnight.

CIA spokeswoman Jennifer Youngblood denied claims that requests for support  were turned down.

“We can say with confidence that the Agency reacted quickly to aid our  colleagues during that terrible evening in Benghazi,” she said. “Moreover, no  one at any level in the CIA told anybody not to help those in need; claims to  the contrary are simply inaccurate.  In fact, it is important to remember how  many lives were saved by courageous Americans who put their own safety at risk  that night-and that some of those selfless Americans gave their lives in the  effort to rescue their comrades.”

I can’t help but think that this sounds, at least with the information that  we are getting, like much of the response to the attacks of September 11, which  was no response.  Even more disturbing is what BlackFive writes, ““This is  bigger than Watergate!… The worst has to be the team on the ground  knowing that the President just left you to die.“

All of this was responded to by Defense Secretary Leon Panetta on Thursday.   He said, “The U.S. military did not get involved during the attack on the U.S.  mission in Benghazi, Libya, last month because officials did not have  enough information about what was going on before the attack was  over.”

Just how much information did you need? The White House had emails.  They had forces on the ground,  drones overhead, a live feed, painted targets.  For four hours nothing was done  while the consulate was attacked.  There was a Special Operations team operating  in Central Europe that could have been called upon, but weren’t, and could have  flown there in less than two hours.  But none of this was done.

It is looking more and more as though this was not only a planned attack, but  also that either the White House was either negligent and irresponsible in their “non-response” or complicit.

Rambobama

A new, blockbuster TV film, “Seal Team Six, The Raid on Osama Bin Laden” is set to air just days before the election. It is said to be slightly re-edited.

The additional material will definitely not include footage of President Obama speaking at a $35,000 per person fundraiser this summer at the Connecticut home of the movie’s producer, Harvey Weinstein.

From the New York Times:

nullThanks to the magic of editing, President Obama will have a starring role in a television drama about one of his biggest accomplishments — the killing of Osama bin Laden — that will be shown just two nights before the presidential election.

But the star turn is virtually certain to bolster claims that the approximately 90-minute film amounts to a political stunt. Set for a prime-time debut on Nov. 4 on the National Geographic Channel, and a release the next day on Netflix, the film — “SEAL Team Six: The Raid on Osama bin Laden” — is being backed by Harvey Weinstein, a longtime Democratic contributor and one of the Obama campaign’s most vigorous backers. Mr. Weinstein bought the rights to the film for about $2.5 million at the Cannes festival in May.

[…]

But promotional materials and a copy of the movie provided to The New York Times this week also show that the film has been recut, using news and documentary footage to strengthen Mr. Obama’s role and provide a window into decision-making in the White House.

In a joint interview on Tuesday Mr. Weinstein; the film’s director, John Stockwell; and others said the changes to the film were not politically motivated but were meant to give the film a stronger sense of realism.

I’m guessing that by now the film has been digitally altered in post production to remove any visible bayonets.

There was a scene in the movie depicting Mitt Romney opposing the Bin Laden raid, and it was reportedly cut at the insistence of the National Geographic Channel’s CEO. They wouldn’t want a film touting Obama’s role in the death of the world’s most wanted terrorist that was produced by a huge supporter of the president and set to air two days before the general election to appear to be politically motivated, would they?

Also, rumor has it that we can look forward to a cameo from Joe Biden, who will portray a fictional “comic relief” character named Slappy McPlug, a lovable but dim-witted White House teleprompter maintenance technician.

Attribution: Unknown