Saturday, November 22, 2008

Thank You!

Thank you to everyone who has served and who has won Victory in Iraq.

Thank you to every Soldier.

Thank you to every Marine.

Thank you to every Sailor.

Thank you to every Airman.

Thank you to every Coast Guard.

Thank you to every DOD Contractor.

You have won! The United States of America, The Republic of Iraq, their citizens, and all of the Free People of the world owe you a debt of gratitude and respect.

Victory in Iraq: A Look Ahead

Today is Victory in Iraq Day! We should celebrate and thank everyone who has made it possible.

Today also, we should take time and look ahead and see what challenges we still face both in Iraq and in the broader War on Terror. We have asked a lot of our servicemen and women. They have performed wonderfully and we should thank every single one. But more is required. When we ask them, they will go. Some will not come home. So let's take some very careful time and look at the challenges still ahead.


We still have a lot to do. Despite the remarkable progress that has been made this past year, we can't just walk away from our obligation to ensure the safety of the Iraqi people. AQI still has a presence in Iraq though their numbers and capability have been drastically reduced. Several "special groups" continue to operate. But, this is not our role at this point. We are training and teaching the Iraqi army and police force to deal with these problems. Indeed, the majority of our work is training Iraqis to defend their own country. This will still take time and it is a good thing that the Iraqi government has agreed to let US troops remain until 2011.


The situation here is worse. I encourage you to read everything you can about Afghanistan especially Michael Totten. The Afghani government needs lots of improvement. The country is still highly fractured. Poppy and opium production is rampant. Though al Qaedi and the Taliban have been driven from Afghanistan, they use the boarder with Pakistan for safe passage to conduct attacks, raids, and intimidation campaigns.
Needless to say, this is where a good majority of our focus, time, and resources are going to be spent for a long time.


We are allies with Pakistan. But Pakistan has severe problems. The greatest is that the government has absolutely no control of nor influence in the FATA or Federally-Administered Trible Area, a region in the western part of the country where the Taliban have taken control, al Qaedi finds safe haven, and terrorists train, recruit, stage attacks. This problem affects the situation in neighboring Afghanistan, but it is also threatening the Pakistani government. Pakistan wants to help, but frankly, they can't. They have too many internal problems. I don't know that we can currently do anything either.


Iran not only has nuclear ambitions, but they see themselves as the regional power able to affect all of the Middle East. This isn't far from the truth. Unfortunately, their ideas for the Middle East will cause war, death, and distruction. Iran's power is waxing and the world isn't doing a thing about it. Though I think comparing Iran to Nazi Germany isn't a good comparison, I think that the unwillingness of anyone to face Iran before it's too late has many parallels with Europe in the 1930s.

Global War on Terror

Obviously, Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, and Pakistan are a major focus of our efforts right now and in the years to come. But, they are not the only places with severe problems. Saudi Aradia, Yemen, Somalia, South-East Asia, and many other places all have a presense of international terrorist. Each country is unique. Some have governments that are at least seemingly wanting to fight terrorism. Some of these countries have no government at all. This is a dangerous time and a dangerous world. We still have a lot to do.

A Special Note

Let's not forget that we have hundreds of thousands of brave men and women who have volunteered to step up, serve, and be away from their families. They need to know that we support them and that we're behind them. Let's show our support by sending them care packages, letters, and cards. Additionaly, the following links may be very helpful in giving you specific information.

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If you need any ideas, read Samantha Speaks. She has lots of ideas and helpful information.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Analysis: Does this mean it's too late? Answer: Yes.

Journalist are not known for their technical and scientific brilliance. The article linked below clearly states that Iran now has enough raw material for a nuclear bomb. It goes on to mention that as of now, they only have enough for one.

Analysis: Does this mean it's too late? Iran news Jerusalem Post

Firstly, the fact that they have enough for one is quite disturbing by itself. Would anyone be less concerned if they had ten? No.

Second, what the reporter doesn't realize it that enrichment is an accelerating process. That is, it takes a long time to get enough material for the first bomb. But after that, you get a lot of material very quickly.

It took the US several years of planning, construction, and work to get our first bomb. Shortly thereafter, we dropped the second and third on Japan. What most people don't realize it that because we had the infrastructure and technology to produce bombs, we were capable of producing two bombs every month at the end of the war. This is the same situation in which Iran is now. Again, this is not comforting.

"But isn't Iran just enriching uranium for peaceful, electricity-generating purposes?"

Well, no. Electricity generation doesn't require highly enriched material. Several types of nuclear power generators actually do quite well with unenriched fuel. Yet, the centrifuges continue to spin.

So, for what should we look in the coming months? Iran will continue to enrich fuel for additional bombs under the guise of electrical needs. The IAEA inspectors will get thrown out of Iran. In 12 months, they will perform the first test of an atomic bomb.

Of course, Israel is very concerned about this. Iran has repeatedly stated that they wish to wipe Israel off the map. Given their advanced missile program, Iran will shortly have the capability to level entire Israeli cities. Israel, of course, will not wait for this to happen. Once the IAEA inspectors leave Iran because they cannot do their job, Israel will strike the nuclear facilities in Iran. This strike doesn't have to be on all of the facilities at the same time; a few key facilities will suffice to slow weapons production.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Monday, November 3, 2008

More and More Good News

Over the last few months, several bits of good news have come from Iraq. Of course we, myself included, have been distracted by other things. That doesn't mean operations and progress in Iraq have stopped. Here's a recent story of the kind of progress being made in Iraq. Iraqi troops find EFP factory in Sadr City - The Long War Journal Of course, the best good news is the news that hasn't been reported. For the years following the invasion, we heard about the "Ramadan Spike". This was a huge increase in the number of attacks and deaths during the month of Ramadan. Every year, we heard story after story of the copious amount of violence. Well, did you here about it this year? What about last year? The answer is no. The reason is because for the last two years, there hasn't been huge spikes in attacks and violence. Ramadan and come and gone in Iraq and the violence continues to drop, not increase. Though officials we always say that this is more to do, which, certainly there is, they won't say we've won in Iraq. I'll say it. We've won.