Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Fort Carson Soldier Accused Of Killing Prisoner

From the AP and Yahoo News:

Ft. Carson soldier accused of killing prisoner

By DAN ELLIOTT, Associated Press Dan Elliott, Associated Press – 46 mins ago

FORT CARSON, Colo. – A Fort Carson soldier was so eager to fight "the bad guys" in Afghanistan that he shot and killed a Taliban member who was sleeping in a jail cell, military prosecutors said Tuesday.

Prosecutors wrapped up a hearing to determine whether Pfc. David Lawrence should be court-martialed on the charge of premeditated murder in the Oct. 17 slaying of the prisoner.

The presiding officer will recommend to commanders whether the 20-year-old Indiana native should be tried. It's not clear when that recommendation will come.

Lawrence's lawyer said the soldier is taking medication for schizophrenia and isn't mentally fit to stand trial.

During testimony, two soldiers who guarded Lawrence after his arrest in Afghanistan said he told them that he and his lawyer might "play the crazy card."

Lawrence appeared to repeatedly nod off during the hearing, prompting prosecutors to ask a sergeant to sit next to him to make sure he stayed awake. At one point, he stood up and started to walk away before an officer pulled him back.

One of the soldiers from Lawrence's platoon, Pfc. Dimitri Andre Jenkins, testified by speaker phone from Afghanistan about Jenkins' unsettling behavior before the prisoner was shot.

Jenkins, a medic, said Lawrence acted strangely, saying sometimes he was upset about a friend who had died back home and sometimes he laughed and joked with other soldiers.

Jenkins testified that he reported his concerns to superiors about Lawrence, who was serving with the 1st Brigade Combat Team of the 4th Infantry Division in Afghanistan. Jenkins said he feared the prisoner would be killed when "for the most part, he said he was going to do something that had to be done."

Jenkins also said that before the prisoner was shot, "I felt like it was going to be some kind of murder-suicide deal."

Lawrence's guards, Sgt. John Miller and Pvt. Aaron Rederstorf, also both testified that Lawrence told them that the bullet that killed the detainee — who hasn't been identified — had ricocheted off something before it struck him.

They said that before Lawrence had his first judicial hearing in Afghanistan, he was smiling and laughing, with Miller saying he appeared "almost cocky".

After the hearing, they said Lawrence became more subdued and at one point appeared to be crying. Both guards said they were not at the hearing and didn't know what had transpired.

Both guards, who also testified by phone from Afghanistan, said Lawrence had asked them about how long a prison term he might get.

"Well, if I get 20 years, I'll get out when I'm 40 and that wouldn't be too bad," Miller quoted Lawrence as saying.

Sgt. Jaroslab Diaz, who had served as Lawrence's platoon leader at one time, also testified that two other soldiers told him that Lawrence had reported having homicidal and suicidal thoughts before the shooting. Diaz testified that Lawrence said he shot the leader.

The Army says it's not sure of the name of the Taliban leader killed, saying he had a number of aliases.

WikiLeaks: Poles Find that Obama Indeed Did Trade Away the Missile Shiled For Russian Support On Iran

From Gateway Pundit and Right Network:

Nov 29, 2010 (17 hours ago)Polish News: Wikileaks Reveals Obama Traded Away Missile Shield For Russian Support on Iranfrom Gateway Pundit by Jim HoftObama traded away the European missile shield in exchange for Russian support for UN sanctions on Iran.

Poland’s The News reported, via Free Republic:

President Obama cancelled anti-missile shield plans in Poland and the Czech Republic to get Russia support for UN sanctions against Iran, documents made public by Wikileaks reveal.

The released documents also show that out of the 251,287 cables planned for release by Wikileaks, 972 come from US embassies in Warsaw (970) and Krakow (2). The most recent cables from Poland are dated February 2010 though their contents have not yet been revealed.

One of the cables from Poland is labelled ‘top secret’, 30 ‘secret’, nine ‘confidential’ 556 ‘sensitive’, 204 ‘for official use only’ and 170 not classified as confidential.

Earlier, US diplomats had informed Poland’s Foreign Ministry that documents were to be released by Wikileaks which could potentially compromise confidentiality between the two sides.

The whistle blowing web site, publishing diplomatic cables and other documents via The New York Times, the Guardian (UK) and other media outlets, show that George Bush’s anti-missile shield plan to station 10 interceptor rockets in Poland not far from the Kaliningrad (Russia) border and a radar system in the Czech Republic was seen as an obstacle by Washington in getting tougher sanctions against Iran’s nuclear ambitions

Afghan "Policeman" Kills Six ISAF Soldiers

From The Long War Journal:

Afghan 'policeman' kills six ISAF soldiers

By Bill RoggioNovember 29, 2010

A man dressed in an Afghan Border Police uniform killed six ISAF soldiers during training in the east before being killed himself, the International Security Assistance Force reported today.

"An individual in an Afghan Border Police uniform turned his weapon against International Security Assistance Forces during a training mission today, killing six service members in eastern Afghanistan," ISAF stated in a press release. The identities and nationalities of the ISAF soldiers were not disclosed, nor was the exact location of the attack.

It is unclear if the attacker was a Taliban fighter who infiltrated the training, an Afghan police recruit planted or turned by the Taliban, or a disgruntled policeman. ISAF has begun an investigation into the deaths of the soldiers.

The Taliban have not released a statement claiming credit for the attack at this time.

The Taliban have killed several ISAF trainers and soldiers in similar attacks over the years. In July, Taliban fighters who infiltrated the police and Afghan Army killed three British soldiers, two US civilian trainers, and an Afghan soldier in separate attacks in Helmand and Balkh. In August, a police trainee opened fire on and killed two Spanish troops and their interpreter in western Afghanistan. The Taliban took credit for the attack. And earlier this month, two US Marines were killed by an Afghan soldier in Helmand.

Today's attack takes place just two days after two Taliban suicide bombers dressed as Afghan police officers penetrated security at a police headquarters and training facility in Paktika province, also in the east. The suicide bombers killed 12 Afghan policemen in the attack. It is unclear if the suicide bombers were actual policemen or if they penetrated security.

ISAF has stepped up its training of Afghan soldiers and police in an effort to rapidly grow the Afghan National Security Forces. NATO has pledged to begin the handover of security responsibilities to the ANSF in 2014. The rapid growth of the ANSF has given the Taliban opportunity to more easily infiltrate security forces.

Read more: http://www.longwarjournal.org/archives/2010/11/afghan_policeman_kil.php#ixzz16kfEx9Ak

Monday, November 29, 2010


From The American Thinker:

November 30, 2010


By Jack Curtis

Franklin Roosevelt's Democrats needed WWII to bolster their failed depression program; Barack Obama's Democrats are in a comparable place. Most know that troubled, frightened rulers may turn to war to shore up their positions. Should we expect that?

WWII roared up from the never-quenched embers of WWI in the desperation of a world depression. It was the completion of something never properly finished. Hitler's economic cure, militarization, couldn't be sustained in isolation; the European Allies' depressed economies were weak, tempting Hitler's needs. The U.S. was both weak and isolationist. We know the result.

Today we're looking again at world economic weakness and fear, with another newly strengthened and militarized country resentful of the generations of subservience imposed upon it by those same Allies. That country would be China. It's much stronger now than in 1950, when it bloodied the U.S. military in Korea. The U.S., on the other hand, has dissipated in Korea, Viet Nam, Iraq, and Afghanistan, with a Pyrrhic success in Kuwait but no sustainable gain clearly worth its price since WWII. China has industrialized and acquired Tibet, and the nation is extending its influence economically and militarily.

China sees no choice; its Communist ideology failed, and its government is preserving the mandate of Heaven in the face of poverty and broken promises piled on generations of atrocities and suffering. Millions have discarded poverty, and hundreds of millions watching want their turn. The ex-Communist hierarchy must visibly deliver -- or else.

Slowing delivery threatens the government, and a threatened government can't afford to look weak. Taiwan's independence; Japanese, Russian and Indian boundary claims; and U.S. naval suzerainty in nearby waters are all perceived as imposed, intolerable weaknesses. Another is the existence of South Korea, a flaunted weakness rendered insulting by today's contrast with the North, which exists only because China poured soldiers into North Korea's failing attempt to take the South, forcing a stalemate.

China tries to offset its perceived weakness by lining up publicly against those imposing weakness upon it and, where it can, encouraging their enemies. In addition to supporting such as Iran, from whom it gets both oil and the thwarting of its opponents, China uses its North Korean client for behavior China can't afford to engage in openly. China continues to develop its military toward the point that will allow it to act directly against those it sees as interfering.

China has industrialized, like everywhere else, on the backs of its people, but its government has largely held off the liberalizing societal changes seen elsewhere in order to speed up the process. That process has relied on rich world customers who have now spent themselves broke, threatening the program, and therefore the government.

Threatened governments rattle sabers and bully the weak to look stronger, a pattern we have seen from China before. Calculating governments take advantage of both perceived weaknesses and momentary distractions to accomplish things that seem too risky at other times; we have seen this from China as well.

From China today, one might see the U.S. and Europe as declining markets becoming unable to finance future hegemonic activities and, specifically, becoming unable to offer southeast Asia military protection, opening the way to Chinese influence. One might even see Japan added to that.

Then, consider Korea from China. The Korean War was not an independent action by North Korea. It was an attempt by China, with some Soviet help, to expel the West and augment China, using Koreans to do the work. When the Koreans failed, the Chinese themselves tried. The state of suspended warfare remains in place; there has never been a peace. To China, Korea is unfinished business.

China has been steadily adding missiles on its coast aimed at Taiwan and has at times heavily shelled some of its surrounding islands. Its intent to take the island is clear and on record. It is replacing indigenous peoples with Han in Tibet and Xinjiang, the old Chinese Turkestan. It has taken Macau and Hong Kong, is about to complete its first aircraft carrier, and is investing in missiles, drones, satellites and computers. It's sitting on a Mount Everest of U.S. dollars.

North Korea has fired missiles over Japan; it recently torpedoed an unwarned South Korean warship and then shelled an offshore island, creating numerous casualties. It has announced an intention to do more. China (with Russia) has dropped the dollar and will settle its debts in its own currency. There's a major media video alleged to show a mystery missile launched off southern California, followed by a very late and technically unsupported government denial. There seem to be no clear and public U.S. actions pointing to a cost that will be imposed upon a China/Korea progression, leaving much for them to gain.

A similar situation led to Saddam Hussein's miscalculation invading Kuwait, but the cautious Chinese are not so rash. They misread the first Korean War and have avoided such mistakes since, but they haven't failed to pursue real opportunities. The rich world's financial collapse is clearly such an opportunity; the open question is timing.

China would like its goals to fall into its hands at the lowest cost; at some point, as economic weakness proceeds, war won't be necessary. The once-rich world will have to let it happen. But China can't wait too long, as that same weakness threatens its own stability. And maybe Obama will decide to follow the Rooseveltian script. These are spooky times!

Report Warns Obama About EMP Threat, New Dark Ages

From World Net Daily and The Patriot Update:

Report warns Obama about 'new' Dark Ages

'Airplanes would fall from sky, cars would stop, networks fail'


Posted: November 28, 2010

6:09 pm Eastern

By Bob Unruh

© 2010 WorldNetDaily

Two national-security experts have issued a report through the Heritage Foundation that warns Obama administration officials to start working now to prevent – and mitigate the damage from – an electromagnetic pulse attack on the United States because of the potential for "unimaginable devastation."

"Not even a global humanitarian effort would be enough to keep hundreds of millions of Americans from death by starvation, exposure, or lack of medicine. Nor would the catastrophe stop at U.S. borders. Most of Canada would be devastated, too, as its infrastructure is integrated with the U.S. power grid. Much of the world's intellectual brain power (half of it is in the United States) would be lost as well. Earth would most likely recede into the 'new' Dark Ages," states the report by James J. Carafano, the deputy director of the Kathryn and Shelby Cullom Davis Institute for International Studies and director of the Douglas and Sarah Allison Center for Foreign Policy Studies, and Richard Weitz, senior fellow and director of the Center for Politial-Military Analysis at the Hudson Institute.

The report, which is described by the Heritage Foundation as a "backgrounder," is titled "EMP Attacks – What the U.S. Must Do Now" and was released just days ago, says what is needed right now is for the government to "prevent the threat," by pursuing "an aggressive protect-and-defend strategy, including comprehensive missile defense; modernizing the U.S. nuclear deterrent; and adopting proactive nonproliferation and counterproliferation measures."

Do you want to keep up on the EMP threat? Subscribe to the publication that broke the story in 2004 – Joseph Farah's G2 Bulletin.

Further, measures are needed to add to the "resilience" of the electrical grid and telecommunications systems, including duplicating some essential functions, and "robust" pre-disaster planning should be going on now for "federal, state, local private-sector, non-government organizations and international support," the report said.

(Story continues below)

Especially, the nation needs to work to "protect the capacity to communicate," the report explains.

"An EMP strike can easily obliterate America's electrical, telecommunications, transportation, financial, food,and water infrastructures, rendering the United States helpless to coordinate actions and deliver services essential for daily life," says the report.

"In the words of Arizona Sen. John Kyl, EMP 'is one of only a few ways that the United States could be defeated by its enemies.' The time to prepare is now!"

The new report echoes the warnings carried in a story first broken in WND five years ago about a blue-ribbon commission appointed by Congress to investigate the impact of an EMP attack on the U.S.

An EMP catastrophe, which scientists have warned also could come through a naturally occurring Coronal Mass Ejection from the sun, largely is feared to come from an act of war from an enemy. If there is a nuclear explosion high in the atmosphere over North America the resulting electromagnetic discharge can "permanently disable the electrical systems that run nearly all civilian and military infrastructures," the report said.

"A massive EMP attack on the United States would produce almost unimaginable devastation. Communications would collapse, transportation would halt, and electrical power would simply be non-existent," the report warns.

"All past calamities of the modern era would pale in comparison to the catastrophe caused by a successful high-altitude EMP strike," the report said. "The effects of EMP will immediately disable a portion of the 130 million cars and some 90 million trucks. Since millions of vehicles are on the road at any given time, there will be accidents and congestion that will impede movement…. The U.S. rail network depends directly on electricity. … America's aviation industry will be destroyed…. The U.S. food infrastructure depends heavily on the transportation sector," it warns.

William R. Graham, chairman of the Commission to Assess the Threat to the United States from Electromagnetic Pulse Attack and the former national science adviser to President Reagan, previously testified before Congress and issued an alarming report on "one of a small number of threats that can hold our society at risk of catastrophic consequences."

He identified vulnerabilities in the nation's critical infrastructures that "are essential to both our civilian and military capabilities."

Not taking the steps necessary to reduce the threat "can both invite and reward attack," Graham told the members of Congress at the time.

He described that the attack would come like a swift stroke of lightning, and would immediately disrupt and damage all electronic systems and America's electrical infrastructure.

A detonation over the middle of the continental U.S. "has the capability to produce significant damage to critical infrastructures that support the fabric of U.S. society and the ability of the United States and Western nations to project influence and military power," said Graham.

"Several potential adversaries have the capability to attack the United States with a high-altitude nuclear-weapon-generated electromagnetic pulse, and others appear to be pursuing efforts to obtain that capability," said Graham.

"A determined adversary can achieve an EMP attack capability without having a high level of sophistication. For example, an adversary would not have to have long-range ballistic missiles to conduct an EMP attack against the United States. Such an attack could be launched from a freighter off the U.S. coast using a short- or medium-range missile to loft a nuclear warhead to high altitude. Terrorists sponsored by a rogue state could attempt to execute such an attack without revealing the identity of the perpetrators. Iran, the world's leading sponsor of international terrorism, has practiced launching a mobile ballistic missile from a vessel in the Caspian Sea. Iran has also tested high-altitude explosions of the Shahab-III, a test mode consistent with EMP attack, and described the tests as successful. Iranian military writings explicitly discuss a nuclear EMP attack that would gravely harm the United States. While the commission does not know the intention of Iran in conducting these activities, we are disturbed by the capability that emerges when we connect the dots."

The new Heritage Foundation report echoed those concerns.

"Even with farsighted mitigation measures there is little question that a nationwide EMP attack would be crippling," it warned. "Thus, while pursuing mitigation, the U.S. should take all possible measures to protect and defend the nation against a ballistic-missile attack that could be used to deliver an EMP strike, as well as pursue aggressive counter-proliferation measures against rogue states developing nuclear weapons."

The report warns such an attack would turn science fiction into reality.

"Airplanes would literally fall from the sky, cars and trucks would stop working, and water, sewer, and electrical networks would fail. Food would rot, medical services would collapse, and transportation would become almost nonexistent," it explains.

The report warned that one criticality is to develop domestic sources for replacement equipment for the electric equipment, transformers and substations that would be damaged.

"The equipment used in the transmission grid is costly, specially produced, and has to be ordered from overseas … Those with the expertise to replace transformers and capacitors are likely to be overwhelmed…"

What would happen already has been documented, the report noted, in the 1977 New York City blackout, although on a much smaller scale.

"Two lightning strikes caused overloading in the electrical power substations of the Con Edison power company. These lighting strikes, the equivalent of a minuscule fraction of [EMP], caused the Indian Point power plant north of the city to fail, as well as the subsequent failure of the Long Island interconnection. … Failure of the Linden-Goethals 230,000-volt interconnection with New Jersey resulted in the protective devices removing overloaded lines, transformers, and cables from service. As a result, a power failure spread throughout the New York area. This blackout lasted only one day, yet resulted in widespread looting and the breakdown of the rule of law throughout many New York neighborhoods. The estimated cost of the blackout was approximately $246 million, and nearly 3,000 people were arrested through the 26-hour period," the report said.

"The blackout in New York City resulted in an immediate breakdown of the social order. The police were outmatched and had no chance of stopping such massive theft, largely having no choice but to stand by watching the looters from a distance. In North Brooklyn, a community of more than a million residents, only 189 police officers were on duty…."

In 2003, a blackout in Ohio, New York, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Michigan and Canada saw "massive traffic jams and gridlock when people tried to get home without traffic lights. … Railways, airlines, gas stations, and oil refineries halted operations. Telephone lines were overwhelmed due to the high volume of calls. Overall, the blackout's economic impact was between $7 billion and $10 billion due to food spoilage, lost production, overtime wages…"

A true EMP attack, the report said, "could prove even more severe."

Further, major disruptions will happen in communications, financial and other computer-dependent parts of society.

Peter Vincent Pry, chief of EMPact America, said the world this past summer dodged a bullet – in the form of a massive solar flare.

The results of that naturally occurring even could be very similar to a nuclear-caused EMP attack, he said.

"The last 'great' geomagnetic storm was in 1859, called the Carrington event. Modern civilization, so dependent upon electronic systems, has not yet experienced a 'great' geomagnetic storm. Many scientists think we are overdue," he wrote. "Some scientists believe that, as we approach the solar maximum over the next two years, since the solar maximum brings increased solar flare activity, the possibility of a "great" geomagnetic storm will also increase."

Federal Judge Says Prosecutors Established Prima Facie Case On CAIR

From The Global Muslim Brotherhood Daily Report:

Federal Judge Says Prosecutors Established Prima Facie Case On CAIR

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US media is reporting on the unsealing of a legal order and memorandum issued by a federal judge stating that in the Holy Land Foundation terrorism proceedings, federal prosecutors had established “at least a prima facie case as to [the Council on American Islamic Relations'] involvement in a conspiracy to support Hamas.” According to one report:

A federal judge’s decision about the legality of making public a list of unindicted co-conspirators filed by federal prosecutors in the Holy Land Foundation terrorism finance trial has been released following an order published last month by the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals to do so. The unsealed legal memorandum and order was in response to a motion filed by the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA), the North American Islamic Trust (NAIT) and the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) to have themselves removed from the unindicted co-conspirator list. Their efforts to have their names cleared by claiming they never had an opportunity to respond to the government’s listing them as conspirators appears to have been a Pyrrhic victory as the ruling by Judge Jorge Solis lays out the government’s evidence that the groups did in fact conspire to support Hamas. In the ruling Solis finds:

“The Government identifies four portions of the record from the first trail that purportedly established that CAIR was a “joint venturer and co-conspirator”: (1) a Government exhibit showing the objective of the Palestine Committee is to support Hamas; (2) a Government exhibit showing CAIR founder Omar Ahmad is part of the Palestine Committee and Mousa Abu Marzook is its head; (3) a Government exhibit listing CAIR as part of the Palestine Committee; and (4) the testimony of Special Agent Lara Burns and accompanying exhibits placing the CAIR founder at the 1993 Philadelphia conference and describing the CAIR founder’s mediation of a dispute between HLF and Ashqar over Hamas fundraising . (Resp. at 12-13.) The Government does not mention any occasion where it used the 801(d)(2)(E) hearsay exception to introduce a statement of CAIR. The four pieces of evidence the government relies on, as discussed below, do create at least a prima facie case as to CAIR’s involvement in a conspiracy to support Hamas. (p. 6-7)Judge Solis then spends several pages (pp. 14-19) laying out the evidence against ISNA, NAIT and CAIR concerning their active support of HLF’s fundraising for Hamas. He rules that while the list of unindicted co-conspirators should be sealed, their names should not be expunged.”

When the 5th Circuit ruling was published last month ordering the unsealing of Judge Solis’ order, CAIR issued a press release claiming that they had been vindicated, but in fact, the appeals court said just the opposite. While the 5th Circuit said that the unindicted co-conspirator list should not have been made public and that Judge Solis didn’t need to go the lengths he did to resolve the Fifth Amendment question, they refused to vacate his findings. Rather, the appeals court endorsed them, finding that the trial evidence proved ISNA, NAIT and CAIR’s direct involvement in the conspiracy to support Hamas, saying that the Government had “produced ample evidence to establish the associations of CAIR, ISNA and NAIT with HLF, the Islamic Association for Palestine (‘IAP’), and with Hamas,” and that, “The Muslim Brotherhood supervised the creation of the ‘Palestine Committee,’ which was put in charge of other organizations, such as HLF, IAP, UASR, and ISNA,” and, “During the [1993 Philadelphia] conference, Palestine Committee members discussed using ISNA as official cover for their activities.”

An earlier post discussed the original ruling that federal prosecutors violated the rights of the North American Islamic Trust (NAIT) by including it in a list of unindicted co-conspirators in the Holy Land Foundation case.

The case that all of the above organizations are part of the US Muslim Brotherhood and tied to Hamas fundraising is laid out in a Hudson Institute report on the US Muslim Brotherhood and in investigative research on CAIR and ISNA posted on the GMBDR.

For the full Solis ruling, go here.

Airport Security As Parody

From Red State:

Airport Security as Parody

Posted by Erick Erickson (Profile)

Saturday, November 27th at 9:06AM EST


Pejman Yousefzadeh has a great post on airport security. You’ve probably seen similar things.

Throughout the country the full body x-ray machines were turned off for travel the day before Thanksgiving and have largely been unused for several days.

Now, the TSA says there is no official policy, but it seems hard to believe it is sheer coincidence that on the busiest travel days of the year at the largest airports across the country the full body scanners were just . . . randomly?. . . turned off.

In fact, we can be certain the TSA did it to overcome what they feared would be an organized movement to take the full body pat down combined with the high volume of traffic in general.

With that being the case, why have the full body scanners and pat downs? If they aren’t needed on the busiest travel days of the year — the days terrorists would target for maximum collateral damage — why have them at all?

Again, it is worth pointing out that every incident to which the TSA has responded by increasing the security theater have originated from airports overseas and not subject to the TSA’s airport security theater.

By the way, you should be reading Pejman regularly.

Stopping START

From Red State:

Stopping START

just say nyet

Posted by streiff (Profile)

Friday, November 26th at 1:00PM EST


Rarely in our nation’s history have we been in such peril both at home and abroad. The mid term elections of November 3 which culminated in a thorough repudiation of the Obama regime were rightfully focused on its thoroughly negligent financial stewardship. Left unexamined was its equally incompetent foreign policy.

The disastrous faux diplomacy practiced by the Obama regime has increased the inherent instability along the ROK-DPRK border — there have been more border incidents under Obama than there were in the last five years of George Bush’s administration — and has seemingly tried to convert a war won in Iraq into a geopolitical disaster. These actions when coupled with Obama’s irresistible urge to bow and scrape before any and every foreign leader have not improved our standing in the world or made us safer. To the contrary, we are probably a greater risk now than we have been at any point since 1979.

Weakness and idealism are a lethal combination under all circumstances. It leads individuals to place themselves in dangerous situations for all the best reasons. When indulged in by nations it leads to war and disaster again for all the best reasons.

The US Senate has before it a proposed treaty with Russia which according to the administration is nothing more than a benign extension of Ronald Reagan’s "doveryai, no proveryai" or "trust, but verify." For reasons that are more than a little unclear, the Obama regime has chosen to make ratification of this treaty its highest priority insisting that the ratification take place during the upcoming lame duck session of Congress, an act unprecedented in our history. Far from being benign is exemplifies not only weakness and arguably some kind of a 1960s idealism it is nothing more than political desperation.

The US Senate should refuse to act upon this treaty during the lame duck session or at anytime in the future.

The current START treaty was negotiated by Hillary Clinton’s State Department and signed by Obama in April. Its advocates like to claim that it is nothing more than a continuation of the START treaty negotiated under George H. W. Bush and ratified in 1991. While true in some respects there are troubling points in the treaty which have not been adequately addressed by the Democrat Senate. For instance, any fair reading of the treaty clearly implies limits limits the ability of the United States to deploy our anti-ballistic missile defense network :

Recognizing the existence of the interrelationship between strategic offensive arms and strategic defensive arms, that this interrelationship will become more important as strategic nuclear arms are reduced, and that current strategic defensive arms do not undermine the viability and effectiveness of the strategic offensive arms of the Parties

Why the Russians should want to include non-nuclear weapons in a nuclear weapons treaty is obvious. They would like to regain control of the former constituent republics of the USSR as possible and they want to intimidate their former Warsaw Pact client states. Why the Obama regime would go along with this naked power grab needs aggressive exploration of the type that Foreign Relations Committee chairman John F. Kerry will not carry out and the burned out husk representing America’s interests on that committee, Senator Richard Lugar, is temperamentally incapable of undertaking.

That said, the reasons that the treaty should not be rushed through in the twilight of the current Congress do not lie in the treaty itself but in the context surrounding the treaty.

Like any contract, a treaty should be an agreement between a willing buyer and a willing seller. Good treaties like good contracts hold up over time, the North Atlantic Treaty comes to mind, while treaties imposed on weaker signatories tend to end badly, see Treaty of Versailles. Sometimes treaties are equitable and the strategic situation simply changes so drastically that it dies a natural death, the demise of SEATO and CENTO fall in this category.

There are, therefore, two central questions under consideration. First, is this treaty equitable and in America’s interests. Second, is this treaty so vital and time sensitive that it must it be ratified by a lame duck Senate.

In my view this current iteration of START makes even less sense than its predecessor. At least I understood why the first President Bush negotiated and signed that treaty. It was considered to be something of a pacifier for the Soviet apparatchiks smarting at the impending demise of the USSR. The administration of GHW Bush made a fetish out of the survival of the USSR — one often wondered if either Bush or Howard Baker were capable of living in a world that did not include the USSR — and this was simply another part of their efforts to keep that particular zombie in motion in the name of European security. START gave the United States nothing but it arguably gave the Soviet leadership a bit of their pride back and acted as a way of encouraging their good behavior as that particular grotesquerie passed into history.

At the time, though, Russia retained possession of significant arsenal of nuclear weapons and we weren’t exactly sure how they were going to act in this new world that didn’t include the USSR.

The strategic landscape has changed significantly since then. Russia is an economic basket case. The 16% decline in her GDP last year was only mitigated by the fact that Russian fertility rates and life expectancy continue to plummet striving to bring the population in line with the GDP and making that decline of less concern to Russian citizens.

Our first look at the USSR’s strategic missile forces under the original START called into question both their serviceability and security. There is no evidence that either has improved in the intervening 20 years.

All this leads to the inevitable conclusion that the treaty is not in America’s interests. The current iteration of START is unnecessary on its face from a strategic perspective because Russia, or so we’re told, isn’t our enemy. It is also an agreement between the world’s remaining superpower, that would be us, and a kleptocratic thugocracy that is in an economic and demographic death spiral. We have no reason to attack Russia and they, quite honestly, don’t have a reason to attack us assuming their national leadership was able to sober up long enough to order one.

But, counter the advocates, this treaty acts as a guarantor for Russia’s cooperation in dealing with Iran. Russia, they note, stopped its sale of the highly vaunted S-300 air defense system to the mullahs and in an astonishing display un-Russian-like behavior returned their money . Limiting our own strategic offensive and defensive arsenals seems like a rather oblique an expensive way of getting an ostensibly non-enemy power to stop an arms sales. And there is less to this sudden act of collegiality on the part of the Russians. The S-300 is a nearly 20 year old system that Russia has sold to all comers. Apparently the Chinese are selling the Iranians Chinese knock-offs of the S-300 making this much more a falling out of thieves than Russian high mindedness.

Advocates also insist that this treaty acts as a brake on nuclear proliferation. This argument is a three-cushion shot that fails. The reasoning is that if the US and Russia don’t reduce their level of armaments then other counties, like presumably North Korea and Iran, will have an incentive to acquire their own weapons. This argument is nonsense though it is much like the ones made by the left against invading Iraq back when even the left thought Iraq had a nuclear program. One, however, cannot dismiss this mindset as clinically deranged if only because our Secretary of State and President come from a political culture where American power is inherently evil in all its forms and the only way of limiting said power is through arming America’s enemies.

This proposed treaty is a combination historical relic and publicity stunt. Substantively it does nothing to make either the US or USSR safer.

Why then must this treaty be rammed through a lame duck session of Congress?

President Obama offered this gem in his Saturday radio address of November 20 :

Finally, some make no argument against the Treaty – they just ask for more time. But remember this: it has already been 11 months since we’ve had inspectors in Russia, and every day that goes by without ratification is a day that we lose confidence in our understanding of Russia’s nuclear weapons. If the Senate doesn’t act this year – after six months, 18 hearings, and nearly a thousand questions answered – it would have to start over from scratch in January.

If there is anything that is emblematic of the current regime’s blundering from issue to issue it is the insistence that whatever task they are taking up today must be done today and that it has already been studied way too long. Like virtually everything else uttered by the Obama regime there is a general disregard for "truthiness" in this pronouncement.

There is no deadline other than one manufactured by the White House. The original START expired last December calling into question why it is important that it pass now? And why wasn’t in important last year or in the first 10 months of this year.

To cut to the chase this is about Obama’s political future. The treaty wasn’t important before November 3 because he was too busy gutting the economy to get around to it. Now in the cold gray dawn of a post November 3 political landscape Obama realizes he needs something in order to remain relevant. That something, unfortunately for us and for our poor nation, is foreign policy. He cares less about START than about being seen to be driving the train on its ratification and, failing that, blaming Republicans for his failure to push this treaty over the past year

The Portland Christmas Tree Bomber: An Update

From Jihad Watch:

Oregon jihadist in failed bomb attempt made "Osama-style" pre-attack video, railed against parents who "held me back from Jihad in the cause of Allah"

Obviously, the folks had a few extra reasons not to let Junior borrow the car on a Friday night. "Six 55-gallon drums [of explosives] with detonation cords and plastic caps," for example.

In the end, Allah's own orders in the Qur'an to "fight and slay the Pagans wherever ye find them, and seize them, beleaguer them, and lie in wait for them in every stratagem (of war)" (9:5) clearly took precedence for Mohamud. Funny how that keeps happening. "Words from the Oregon Bomb Suspect," by T.C. Baker for IndieProPub, November 28:

Mohamed Osman Mohamud, 19, behind the planned bomb in Portland told an undercover agent in August that he "had found the perfect location for a terrorist attack: the city's annual Christmas tree lighting ceremony".

He said during the hotel meeting he had "dreamed of carrying out an attack for years, and the city's Pioneer Courthouse Square would be packed with thousands. A huge mass that will...be attacked in their own element with their families celebrating the holidays."

Mohamud, scheduled for court on Monday, has been followed for four years. When he was 15 and a student at Beaverton's high school, he told undercover agents about a prayer he made for guidance "about whether I should...go, you know, and make a jihad in a different country or to make like an operation here."

In one meeting, Mohamud told an agent, posing as an extremist, ways he could help "the cause" from "praying five times a day" to "becoming a martyr". But, he "thought of putting an explosion together but that he needed help doing so."

When he was warned several times of that women and children could die, he declined to back out.

Mohamud also made a video dressed in what he called "Sheik Osama style" which included a white robe, red and white headdress and camouflage jacket. In the video, he went on to "read a statement on his dream of bringing a dark day on Americans and blamed his family for getting in the way".

In his statement, Mohamud said, "To my parents who held me back from Jihad in the cause of Allah. I say to them...if you - if you make allies with the enemy, then Allah's power...will ask you about that on the day of judgment, and nothing that you do can hold me back."...Posted by Marisol on November 28, 2010 8:56 AM
And this, also from Jihad Watch:
Failed Oregon jihadist claims to have written articles for "Jihad Recollections," submitted one to al-Qaeda's "Inspire"

Publish or perish? Well, per Qur'an 9:111, "publish and perish" may be more what they're encouraging. "FBI: Suspect claimed he wrote jihadist fitness article," from CNN, November 27:

A Somali-American teenager arrested Friday on suspicion of plotting to bomb a holiday ceremony in Portland, Oregon, told an undercover FBI employee that he wrote articles published in an English-language jihadist magazine, including a story on fitness, an FBI affidavit says.

Mohamed Osman Mohamud, 19, told the undercover operative last summer that he had written articles for the online magazine Jihad Recollections under a pen name, according to an FBI affidavit filed with Mohamud's arrest warrant.

One of the articles Mohamud claimed to have written was "Getting in shape without weights," which was published in the inaugural issue of Jihad Recollections in April 2009, according to the affidavit.

In the article, the author - identified as Ibn al-Mubarak - writes that jihadists must prepare their bodies for war and "train as hard as possible in order to damage the enemies of Allah as much as possible."

The article implores readers to train without weights, in part because using them is "unrealistic for the Mujahid in the front lines anywhere in the world today," and because gyms are not Islamic environments, with their "music, semi-naked women [and] free mixing."

The piece describes stretches and warm-ups before instructing on ways to sculpt one's legs (suggestions include walking at least 90 minutes a day, doing interval runs, crawling long distances and sitting against a wall for long periods) and strengthen one's arms (100 to 150 push-ups per day, pull-ups, walking on hands).

"We find that [weights are] ... a major setback for the Americans and the NATO Crusading army as they cannot go to any battlefront without carrying along with them their bench, squat sets and sometimes even their machines," the article says. [...]

That fitness regimen has helped produce a fighting force that the jihadists cannot defeat fighting openly like men. So the pious thugs hide behind women and children to conduct asymmetrical warfare (just as Mohamud didn't care that his own attack would kill women and children) and create needless casualties for propaganda points. The valiant mujahedin! Alhamdulillah!

Mohamud said he wrote two other articles for Jihad Recollections, and that he also sent an article to another jihadist publication, Inspire, according to the affidavit. The court document does not identify those articles.

U.S. counterterrorism officials have said Jihad Recollections was produced by former North Carolina resident Samir Khan, who those officials now say they believe is living in Yemen. Intelligence officials also suspect Khan is the driving force behind Inspire.

He may get a publication after all, as a consolation prize for his abject failure, having taken the kuffar law enforcement's bait -- hook, line and sinker. Perhaps he'll get an "E" for Effort. It will be cold comfort inside the Portland jail.

Posted by Marisol on November 28, 2010 8:26 AM
And this, also from Jihad Watch:
Former classmate recalls failed Oregon jihadist: "the main thing was, the way he said he hated Americans"

Gratitude: Mohamed Osman Mohamud came to the United States from Somalia and became a naturalized citizen, which entails taking this oath:

I hereby declare, on oath that I absolutely and entirely renounce and abjure all allegiance and fidelity to any foreign prince, potentate, state, or sovereignty of whom or which I have heretofore been a subject or citizen; that I will support and defend the Constitution and laws of the United States of America against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I will bear arms on behalf of the United States when required by law; that I will perform noncombatant service in the Armed Forces of the United States when required by the law; that I will perform work of national importance under civilian direction when required by the law; and that I take this obligation freely without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; so help me God."

"Details emerge about Mohamud, Westview / OSU student," by Frank Mungeam for KGW, November 27:

PORTLAND, Ore. -- Mohamed Osman Mohamud, the suspect in Friday night's plot to explode a car-bomb during Portland's Christmas tree lighting celebration, is a naturalized American citizen who was born in Somalia in 1991.

During elementary school, Mohamud moved 9,000 miles from the war-torn streets of Mogadishu to the suburbs of Portland.

He graduated from Westview High School in 2009 and then enrolled at Oregon State University.

Westview classmates told KGW he often joked about being a terrorist, but no one took him seriously.

A classmate who didn't want to be identified remembered Mohamud's odd choice for a physics project. Mohamud detailed how a rocket-propelled grenade worked.

"It was just weird about how someone would choose that, you know," the classmate said.

In an affidavit obtained by KGW, Mohamud recently told the FBI he had been thinking of committing some form of violent jihad since the age of 15.

Another of Mohamud's former classmates remembered a fight the two had over a messy locker. "The main thing was, the way he said he hated Americans," said Andy Stull. "It was serious. He looked me in the eye and had this look in his eye, like it was his determination in life - 'I hate Americans!'"

Stull says he was scared enough at the time to get school counselors involved, but that was the end of it.

In the fall of 2009, Mohamud started his freshman year at O.S.U. He took classes part-time, with a focus on engineering.

He also attended the Salman Alfarisi Islamic Center near campus. His Imam told KGW Mohamud did not voice any radical views. The Iman said Mohamud grew reclusive recently, and described the teen as "relaxed" in his religious practice.

"I had to say he did a number of things against the religion. He had a lifestyle that was against the religion. I can't really say that he was in a position to represent Islam," said Imam Yousef Wanly.

And Mohammed Atta drank like a fish. But we all know how that ended. The bottom line is that both took the commands and promises (see Qur'an 9:111, 56:12-40, including vv. 22-23, 35-37) of the Qur'an seriously in the matter to which it devotes so much of its space: waging war against unbelievers.

Posted by Marisol on November 28, 2010 10:21 AM
And lastly, this, also from Jihad Watch:
Divorce causes jihad: Oregon jihadist "embraced militant Islam not long after his parents split up"

The search for some explanation, any explanation, for Mohamed Mohamud's attempted jihad mass-murder other than the texts and teachings of Islam has now begun in earnest. The first entry: Mohamud became "radicalized" after his parents split.

And it's true: the divorce of parents has driven many an unhappy child to try to set off a bomb in a crowded place and murder hundreds, if not thousands, of people, hasn't it?

Of course, many more terrorist attacks have been committed by Islamic jihadists who read and took seriously the Qur'an's commands to wage war against infidels than by children traumatized by their parents' divorce, but never mind: when it comes to exonerating Islam of any responsibility for motivating violent jihadists, government, law enforcement and media officials join Islamic spokesmen in grabbing hold of any alternative explanation, no matter how implausible.

"Neighbors say wannabe Christmas bomber Mohamed Mohamud embraced extremism after parents split," by Lukas I. Alpert for the New York Daily News, November 28:

[...] Neighbors say Mohamud was doted on by his family but embraced militant Islam not long after his parents split up.

"He was a quiet kid, but with his folks splitting up, who knows?" Adam Napier, who lived next door to Mohamed Osman Mohamud for years told the newspaper.

Mohamud's family moved to the U.S. when he was just 5 and were described as friendly and modern.

Mariam Barre did not wear a hijab and her husband, Osman Barre, reportedly worked as an engineer for Intel. Mohamud appeared to be particularly close to his mother, neighbors said.

"She always talked so good about him. He was just a good kid," said Adam Napier's mother, Stephanie.

In 2009, Mohamud parents split up, not long after he turned 18, the paper said.

Omar Jamal, first secretary to the Somali Mission to the United Nations, told KPTV that Mohamud's father had remarried a woman in Minneapolis, which has a large Somali population and has been a hotbed for jihadist recruitment.

Later in 2009, Mohamud began communicating with jihadists abroad, and wrote articles for a website called "Jihad Recollections," authorities said....

Posted by Robert on November 28, 2010 5:29 PM

Game-Changing Rifle Arrives In Afghanistan

From Homeland Security Newswire:

In the trenches

Game-changing rifle arrives in Afghanistan

Published 29 November 2010

A new smart rifle can be programmed so that its 25-mm. ammunition does not explode on impact; instead, it can be set to detonate either in front of or behind a target, meaning it literally will go through a wall before it explodes and kills the enemy; the Army says that enemy soldier can run, but they can no longer hide

A future weapon is now deployed // Source: weaselzippers.us

A few months ago we wrote about a new, innovative, and very smart weapon the U.S. military was developing (see “Smart grenade launcher headed to Afghanistan,” 19 October 2010 HSNW; and “U.S. Army’s XM25 smart grenade launcher described as ‘game changer,’” 18 May 2010 HSNW).

In the old days, the best way to stay alive in the face of incoming fire has been to take cover behind a wall. The new, game-changing rifle makes this tactic obsolete: an enemy soldier may run, but he can no longer hide.

Fox News offers an update, reporting that after years of development, the U.S. Army has unleashed a new weapon in Afghanistan — the XM25 Counter Defilade Target Engagement System, a high-tech rifle that can be programmed so that its 25-mm. ammunition does not necessarily explode on impact. Instead, it can be set to detonate either in front of or behind a target, meaning it literally will go through a wall before it explodes and kills the enemy.

It also has a range of roughly 2,300 feet — nearly the length of eight football fields — making it possible to fire at targets well past the range of the rifles and carbines that most soldiers carry today.

Lt. Col. Christopher Lehner, project manager for the semi-automatic, shoulder-fired weapon system for the U.S. Army’s Program Executive Office Soldier, said that the XM25’s capability alone is such a “game-changer” that it will lead to new ways of fighting on the battlefield, beginning this month in Afghanistan.

“With this weapon system, we take away cover from [enemy targets] forever,” Lehner told FoxNews.com. “Tactics are going to have to be rewritten. The only thing we can see [enemies] being able to do is run away.”

This would make it much easier for U.S. troops to put them in their sights, either with that same XM25 or another direct-fire weapon.

With this new weapon in the Army’s arsenal, Lehner said, “We’re much more effective, by many magnitudes, than current weapons at the squad level. We’re able to shoot farther and more accurately, and our soldiers can stay behind sandbags, walls or rocks, which provides them protection from fire.”

Lehner said the first XM25s were distributed to combat units in Afghanistan this month. The 12-pound, 29-inch system, which was designed by Minnesota’s Alliant Techsystems, costs up to $35,000 per unit and, while highly sophisticated, is so easy to use that soldiers become proficient within minutes.

“That’s how intuitively easy it is, even though it’s high-tech,” Lehner said. “All a soldier needs to know how to do is laze the target. It decimates anything within its lethal radius.”

Once the trigger is pulled and the round leaves the barrel, a computer chip inside the projectile communicates exactly how far it has traveled, allowing for precise detonation behind or ahead of any target.

“We have found that this has really made our soldiers so much more accurate and being able to deliver this high-explosive round in about five seconds,” said Lehner, taking into account the time it takes a soldier to laze, aim and fire the weapon. Once fired, Lehner said, the round will reach its target in a “second or two,” meaning the entire process from aiming to direct hit lasts less than ten seconds, compared to ten minutes or longer for traditional mortar fire.

Fox News quotes Army officials describing a potential battlefield scenario, which might go something like this:

— A patrol encounters an enemy combatant in a walled Afghan village who fires an AK-47 intermittently from behind cover, exposing himself only for a brief second to fire.

— The patrol’s leader calls for the XM25 gunman, who uses the weapon’s laser range finder to calculate the distance to the target.

— He then uses an incremental button located near the trigger to add one meter to the round’s distance, since the enemy is hiding behind a wall.

— The round is fired, and it explodes with a blast comparable to a hand grenade past the wall and above the enemy.

“This is revolutionary for many reasons,” Lehner said, citing increased efficiency, safety, and lethality. “This is the first time we’re putting smart technology in an individual weapon system for our soldiers. We feel it’s very important to field this because it keeps us ahead of the technological curve of our potential enemies. We have a feeling other people will try to copy us — this is the future.”

Lehner said the Army plans to purchase at least 12,500 XM25 systems beginning next year — enough for one system in each infantry squad and Special Forces team.

The military is not overly concerned that the weapon might be captured by the enemy, because they would be unable to obtain its highly specialized ammunition, batteries, and other components. Lehner said he expects other nations will try to copy its technology, but it will be very cost-prohibitive.

“This is a game-changer,” Lehner said. “The enemy has learned to get cover, for hundreds if not thousands of years. Well, they can’t do that anymore. We’re taking that cover from them and there’s only two outcomes: We’re going to get you behind that cover or force you to flee. So no matter what, we gotcha.”

Political Cartoon Of The Day

From Town Hall:

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Ignoring Obama Regime's Edict, FBI Says Portland Plot Inspired By "Jihad"

From The American Thinker:

November 28, 2010

Ignoring Obama edict, FBI says Portland plot inspired by 'jihad'

David Paulin

Has the FBI jumped off the Obama administration's political correctness bandwagon? Well, the FBI's Portland office apparently has.

Under the Obama administration, certain words that help us describe our enemies are verboten. For instance, the State Department and Department of Homeland Security are banned from using "jihad" and "mujahideen" with reference to Islamic terrorism. It's all part of an effort to avoid offending the Muslim world.

Yet in a press release about the aborted Portland terror attack, the FBI repeatedly uses the "J" word (jihad) to describe what inspired Somali-born Mohamed Osman Mohamud, a naturalized U.S. Citizen who was arrested in the plot. Mohamud, 19, allegedly wanted to blow up an explosives-packed van near a Christmas tree lighting ceremony in Portland's Pioneer Courthouse Square. Mohamud was on the receiving end of a sting operation, so nobody was ever in any danger.

What set him off?

U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder has refused to use the term "radical Islam" to describe the ideology of Muslims who want to kill Westerners and destroy the West. Yet in its press release, the FBI is clear about what motivated Mohamud. It uses the verboten "J" word four times to describe what motivated Mohamud to set out to murder American moms, dads, and their children enjoying Portland's Christmas festivities.

"Cognitive dissonance" describes what's happening here -- the peculiar state of holding two conflicting concepts in one's mind at the same time. Obviously, the FBI couldn't avoid the politically incorrect "J" word when Mohamud himself used it to describe what was motivating him. Or as the FBI says: "Mohamud allegedly told undercover FBI operatives he had been thinking of committing violent jihad since the age of 15."

Not only that, the FBI noted that Mohamud had "written articles that were published in Jihad Recollections, an online magazine that advocated violent jihad."

What must Eric Holder think of all this? (Hat Tip: Gates of Vienna)

In case you missed it, here is a YouTube video of Holder explaining why he refuses to use the term "radical Islam":

Posted at 09:24 AM

U.S. Predators Kill Four Militants In Mir Ali

From The Long War Journal:

US Predators kill 4 'militants' in Mir Ali

By Bill RoggioNovember 28, 2010

Map of the Miramshah-Mir Ali area in North Waziristan. Click to view larger map.

Today the US launched yet another airstrike in the Mir Ali area of Pakistan's Taliban-controlled tribal agency of North Waziristan, killing four terrorists in a strike on a vehicle as it traveled in an area known to host al Qaeda operatives plotting and training to carry out attacks against the West.

Unmanned Predators or the more heavily armed and deadly Reapers fired a pair of missiles at a vehicle as it traveled in the village of Hasan Khel in the Mir Ali area of North Waziristan, AFP reported.

Four Taliban fighters were reported killed, but no senior al Qaeda or Taliban fighters have been reported killed in the strike.

The Mir Ali area is in the sphere of influence of Abu Kasha al Iraqi, an al Qaeda leader who serves as a key link to the Taliban and supports al Qaeda's external operations network. Taliban leader Hafiz Gul Bahadar and the Haqqani Network also operate in the Mir Ali area. Mir Ali is a known hub for al Qaeda's military and external operations councils.

Since Sept. 8, a total of 16 Germans and two Britons have been reported killed in Predator strikes in the Mir Ali area. The Europeans were members of the Islamic Jihad Group, an al Qaeda affiliate based in the Mir Ali area. The IJU members are believed to be involved in a recently discovered al Qaeda plot that targeted several major European cities and was modeled after the terror assault on the Indian city of Mumbai in 2008.

This year, the US has been pounding targets in the Datta Khel, Miramshah, and Mir Ali areas of North Waziristan in an effort to kill members involved in the European plot. Al Qaeda and allied terror groups such as the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan, the Islamic Jihad Group, the Eastern Turkistan Islamic Party, Jaish-e-Mohammed, Lashkar-e-Jhangvi, and a number of Pakistani and Central and South Asian terror groups host or share camps in the region.

Despite the known presence of al Qaeda and other foreign groups in North Waziristan, and requests by the US that action be taken against these groups, the Pakistani military has indicated that it has no plans to take on Bahadar or the Haqqani Network. Bahadar and the Haqqanis are considered "good Taliban" by the Pakistani military establishment as they do not carry out attacks inside Pakistan.

The Predator strikes, by the numbers

Today's strike is the 14th US attack in Pakistan this month. Six of those strikes have hit targets in the Mir Ali area.

The pace of the strikes since the beginning of September is unprecedented since the US began the air campaign in Pakistan in 2004. September's record number of 21 strikes was followed by 16 strikes in October. The previous monthly high was 11 strikes in January 2010, after the Taliban and al Qaeda executed a successful suicide attack at Combat Outpost Chapman that targeted CIA personnel who were active in gathering intelligence for the Predator campaign in Pakistan. In the bombing at COP Chapman, seven CIA officials and a Jordanian intelligence officer were killed.

The US has carried out 105 attacks inside Pakistan this year, and in December is set to double last year's number of strikes. In late August, the US exceeded last year's strike total of 53 with a strike in Kurram. In 2008, the US carried out a total of 36 strikes inside Pakistan. [For up-to-date charts on the US air campaign in Pakistan, see LWJ Special Report, Charting the data for US airstrikes in Pakistan, 2004 - 2010.]

This year the strikes have overwhelmingly been confined to North Waziristan. All but nine of this year's 105 strikes have taken place in that tribal agency. Of the nine strikes that have occurred outside of North Waziristan, seven took place in South Waziristan, one occurred in Khyber, and one took place in Kurram.

Since Sept. 1, the US has ramped up airstrikes against the terror groups in North Waziristan, with 51 strikes Predator strikes in the tribal agency. Many of the strikes targeted cells run by the Islamic Jihad Group, which have been plotting to conduct the Mumbai-styled terror assaults in Europe. A Sept. 8 strike killed an IJU commander known as Qureshi, who specialized in training Germans to conduct attacks in their home country.

The US campaign in northwestern Pakistan has targeted top al Qaeda leaders, al Qaeda's external operations network, and Taliban leaders and fighters who threaten both the Afghan and Pakistani states as well as support al Qaeda's external operations. [For a list of al Qaeda and Taliban leaders killed in the US air campaign in Pakistan, see LWJ Special Report, Senior al Qaeda and Taliban leaders killed in US airstrikes in Pakistan, 2004 - 2010.]

Read more: http://www.longwarjournal.org/archives/2010/11/us_predators_kill_4_3.php#ixzz16eLV0qD1

Portland Officials Rejected (And Still Do, Even Now) The Federal Task Force That Saved The City From Mass Casulaties In A Terror Attack

The number of people who are just too stupid to live and breathe continues to grow....

From Gateway Pundit:

Portland Officials Rejected Federal Task Force That Saved City From Massive Terror Attack

Posted by Jim Hoft on Sunday, November 28, 2010, 9:31 AM

The FBI thwarted a bomb plot at the tree lighting at Pioneer Courthouse Square on Friday night. Mohamed Osman Mohamud, 19, a Somali-born U.S. citizen, was arrested 18 minutes before the tree lighting was to occur. (The Oregonian)

Politically correct Portland officials voted not to participate with federal agents in the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force. Federal agents this week saved Portland citizens from a massive terror attack.

Byron York at The Washington Examiner reported:

In 2005, leaders in Portland, Oregon, angry at the Bush administration’s conduct of the war on terror, voted not to allow city law enforcement officers to participate in a key anti-terror initiative, the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force. On Friday, that task force helped prevent what could have been a horrific terrorist attack in Portland. Now city officials say they might re-think their participation in the task force — because Barack Obama is in the White House.

Reading the FBI affidavit describing Islamist terror suspect Mohamed Osman Mohamud’s plan to bomb a Christmas tree lighting ceremony in Portland’s Pioneer Courthouse Square is a chilling experience. Mohamud, a Somali-born naturalized U.S. citizen who attended Oregon State University, told undercover FBI agents he dreamed of performing acts of jihad in which hundreds, perhaps thousands, of Americans would die. “Do you remember when 9/11 happened when those people were jumping from skyscrapers?” Mohamud asked the agents, according to the affidavit. “I thought that was awesome.”

In months of preparation with men he thought were co-conspirators but were in fact undercover agents, Mohamud backed up his talk with action. After initially making email contact with Islamist radicals in Pakistan, he took part in constructing what he hoped would be an extraordinarily powerful bomb, scouted the best location for the attack, parked the van containing the bomb near the Christmas tree crowd, and, finally, dialed the cell phone number he believed would detonate the explosives. “I want whoever is attending that event to leave either dead or injured,” Mohamud said of the 25,000 people expected to take part in the event.

That Mohamud was arrested and no one was hurt is a testament to good intelligence and law enforcement work. Having Mohamud behind bars has undoubtedly saved lives in Portland; had he not encountered the undercover FBI agents, he might have worked with actual terrorists to construct a bomb, or he might have simply gotten a gun and carried out “an operation here, you know, like something like Mumbai,” as he told the agents.

What is ironic is that the operation that found and stopped Mohamud is precisely the kind of law enforcement work that Portland’s leaders, working with the American Civil Liberties Union, rejected during the Bush years.

Even after the bomb plot was thwarted this week the former mayor of Portland says there is no need to rejoin the FBI task force.

Is South Korea Finally Ready To Cut North Korea Off?

From One Free Korea:

Is South Korea Finally Ready to Cut North Korea Off?

Posted by Joshua Stanton on November 28, 2010 at 3:13 pm · Filed under Sunshine, North-South, Yonpyeong Attack

kji-step.jpgThe New York Times, in a report bylined in Incheon, says that the Yeonpyeong attack has caused a significant shift in South Korean views about the North.

After years of backing food aid and other help for the North despite a series of provocations that included two nuclear tests, many South Koreans now say they feel betrayed and angry. “I think we should respond strongly toward North Korea for once instead of being dragged by them,” said Cho Jong-gu, 44, a salesman in Seoul. “This time, it wasn’t just the soldiers. The North mercilessly hurt the civilians.”

That is not to say that he or other South Koreans will really push for a South Korean strike; people south of the border are well aware that the North could devastate Seoul with its weapons. But the sentiments reflect a change of mood in a country where people have willed themselves to believe that their brotherly ties to the North would override the ideological chasm between the impoverished Communist North and the thriving capitalist South.

The attack seemed to challenge one of the underlying assumptions of a decade of inter-Korean rapprochement, which had slowed but not stopped under President Lee Myung-bak: that two nations’ shared Koreanness trumped political differences, making a return to cold war-era hostilities not only undesirable but also impossible. “I never thought they would attack us people of the same race,” said Hong Jae-soon, 55, a homemaker who fled Yeonpyeong with most of the island’s other 1,350 residents after the attack.

If this report is accurate, it suggests that sympathy for North Korea may shift from being a relatively insignificant factor in a politician’s electability to a political liability. It may mean that Lee Myung Bak will have political cover to do what he should have done years ago and close Kaesong for good (Kaesong’s business model always depended on attracting foreign investment, and North Korea pretty much foreclosed any chance of that with some belligerent meddling starting in late 2008). It could also mean the end of inter-Korean food and fertilizer aid, which was never sufficiently monitored to prevent it from being diverted to the military and those inhabiting the top tier of the North’s political caste system. The end of South Korea’s remaining aid to the North would represent a very significant policy shift. It would also be, in my view, a more appropriate response than military action, something that feels better to call for in the abstract than after the next shells start falling. Until now, South Korean voters weren’t ready to cut up Kim Jong Il’s credit card. Has that changed?

I’m not so sure. First, and provided the North Koreans don’t do something else stupid first, it’s probably too early to tell how much of this anger will dissipate in the coming weeks (the Chosun Ilbo reports that the North may test fire one of its new medium range missiles next). Second, I still don’t see much polling data to back up an anecdotal report from a place that’s uncomfortably close to where the shells landed. This is where I need your help.

There are certainly a lot of interesting things I learn by living and listening in Washington, but one thing I really can’t assess from here is how much truth there is to reports like this. One of my big regrets is that my job and my family have made it difficult to spent much time in Korea since my DEROS date, which means that everything I read and hear about political attitudes in South Korea is based on my increasingly outdated view of an unusually fluid electorate. Just from reading the papers and watching the polls, I’d have thought that attitudes in the South had moderated and stabilized substantially, but then came Mad Cow, which caused me to question all of my conclusions and realize that many of the sentiments of 2002 still lay latent. I have the general sense that gradually, and notwithstanding the conspiracy theories, the reality of the Cheonan Incident has taken hold, and that the North’s pretty-much-undeniable atrocity at Yeonpyeong will buttress that conclusion and shift the consensus on North Korea away from “they wouldn’t” and toward “how could they?” But how much, and for how long?

Another general sense I have is that many South Koreans probably leaned toward viewing USFK as an unnecessary evil in 2002, but that most probably see us as a necessary evil now. Beyond this, there are still two political extremes that remain mostly static. And all of what I’ve just described is subject to dramatic shifts based on things whose significance might completely escape most Americans. But this is the guesswork of someone who doesn’t live in Korea anymore. Maybe you know better. If you do live in Korea, and especially if you’re a Korean speaker, I’d like to hear your assessment of the mood on the street right now.

Wisconsin: Green Bay Gets Mosque, Somali Student Quadruples, General Population In Waiting For First Jihadist

From Creeping Sharia:

Green Bay gets mosque, Somali student population quadruples

Posted on November 28, 2010 by creeping

Coincidence or a case of ‘build the mosque, and they will come’? Will Ground Zero be any different? An update on this post, Rezoning gives Green Bay its first mosque, via Somali student enrollment surges in Green Bay School District – h/t RRW

The number of Somali students enrolled in the Green Bay School District has more than quadrupled since the end of last school year.

The district now enrolls 90 Somalis, compared with 49 in September and just 18 in June. The district’s overall student population tops 21,000.

The growing number of Somali students — many of whom need help to improve their English skills — prompted the Green Bay district to hire someone full time to support and instruct students, to work as a parent contact for schools and to interpret. Abdul Nur’s first day is Monday.

District officials expect to see more Somalis moving to the area, Seefeldt said.

“Green Bay doesn’t have neighborhoods like Chicago,” she said. “They’re coming here because they feel safe, and now they have a community.”

They also are attracted to the newly located Green Bay mosque of the Islamic Society of Wisconsin, she said.

“We have had an influx of Somalis in the past year and a half or so,” said Mohamed Ibrahim, a mosque leader. “They come to worship and be part of a community.”

Nearly 40 percent of students were minorities in the 2009-10 school year, according to the state Department of Public Instruction. Hispanics make up the largest minority group, representing about 20 percent of total student population. In 1995-96, nearly 83 percent of the Green Bay student population was white when the overall student count was 19,618.

How long before Green Bay has its first jihad plotter?

Previous posts on Wisconsin here

Probably An Inside Job (Worship Areas Untouched): Portland Mosque's Office Torched, Arson Expected

From Gateway Pundit:

Portland Mosque Office Torched- Arson Expected

Documents Reveal Iran Has Obtained Missiles From North Korea Capable Of Reaching Western Europe

From Freedom's Lighthouse:

10:57 PM (12 minutes ago)Documents Reveal Iran has Obtained Missiles from North Korea Capable of Reaching Western Europefrom Freedom's Lighthouse by Brian

The New York Times is reporting that documents released in the latest Wikileaks dump of classified information reveal that Iran obtained missiles from North Korea that are capable of reaching Wester European countries:

NEW YORK TIMES: . . . . .Iran obtained 19 of the missiles from North Korea, according to a cable dated Feb. 24 of this year. The cable is a detailed, highly classified account of a meeting between top Russian officials and an American delegation led by Vann H. Van Diepen, an official with the State Department’s nonproliferation division who, as a national intelligence officer several years ago, played a crucial role in the 2007 assessment of Iran’s nuclear capacity.

The missiles could for the first time give Iran the capacity to strike at capitals in Western Europe or easily reach Moscow, and American officials warned that their advanced propulsion could speed Iran’s development of intercontinental ballistic missiles. . . . . Read More (below)

This is what has been happening on President Obama’s watch, all the while he has been convinced that he can reason with the despotic regimes in Iran, North Korea and other places. Iran has only seen Obama’s overtures as an opportunity to obtain the weapons they so desperately desire.

The referenced article, from The New York Times:
Iran Fortifies Its Arsenal With the Aid of North Korea

Yonhap News Agency, via European Pressphoto Agency

Iran bought 19 advanced missiles from North Korea, a diplomatic cable says. The North displayed what some experts say are the same kind of missiles in an October parade.


Published: November 28, 2010



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LinkedinDiggMixxMySpaceYahoo! BuzzPermalink. This article is by William J. Broad, James Glanz and David E. Sanger.

State's Secrets

Day 1 of 9

A cache of diplomatic cables provide a chronicle of the United States' relations with the world.

Other Articles in the Series »

.Related Documents

A Selection From the Cache of Diplomatic Dispatches


Around the World, Distress Over Iran (November 29, 2010)

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.Secret American intelligence assessments have concluded that Iran has obtained a cache of advanced missiles, based on a Russian design, that are much more powerful than anything Washington has publicly conceded that Tehran has in its arsenal, diplomatic cables show.

Iran obtained 19 of the missiles from North Korea, according to a cable dated Feb. 24 of this year. The cable is a detailed, highly classified account of a meeting between top Russian officials and an American delegation led by Vann H. Van Diepen, an official with the State Department’s nonproliferation division who, as a national intelligence officer several years ago, played a crucial role in the 2007 assessment of Iran’s nuclear capacity.

The missiles could for the first time give Iran the capacity to strike at capitals in Western Europe or easily reach Moscow, and American officials warned that their advanced propulsion could speed Iran’s development of intercontinental ballistic missiles.

There has been scattered but persistent speculation on the topic since 2006, when fragmentary reports surfaced that North Korea might have sold Iran missiles based on a Russian design called the R-27, once used aboard Soviet submarines to carry nuclear warheads. In the unclassified world, many arms control experts concluded that isolated components made their way to Iran, but there has been little support for the idea that complete missiles, with their huge thrusters, had been secretly shipped.

The Feb. 24 cable, which is among those obtained by WikiLeaks and made available to a number of news organizations, makes it clear that American intelligence agencies believe that the complete shipment indeed took place, and that Iran is taking pains to master the technology in an attempt to build a new generation of missiles. The missile intelligence also suggests far deeper military — and perhaps nuclear — cooperation between North Korea and Iran than was previously known. At the request of the Obama administration, The New York Times has agreed not to publish the text of the cable.

The North Korean version of the advanced missile, known as the BM-25, could carry a nuclear warhead. Many experts say that Iran remains some distance from obtaining a nuclear warhead, especially one small enough to fit atop a missile, though they believe that it has worked hard to do so.

Still, the BM-25 would be a significant step up for Iran.

Today, the maximum range of Iran’s known ballistic missiles is roughly 1,200 miles, according to experts. That means they could reach targets throughout the Middle East, including Israel, as well as all of Turkey and parts of Eastern Europe.

The range of the Russian R-27, launched from a submarine, was said to be up to 1,500 miles.

Rocket scientists say the BM-25 is longer and heavier, and carries more fuel, giving it a range of up to 2,000 miles. If fired from Iran, that range, in theory, would let its warheads reach targets as far away as Western Europe, including Berlin. If fired northwestward, the warheads could easily reach Moscow.

A range of 2,000 miles is considered medium or intermediate. Traditionally, the United States has defined long-range or intercontinental ballistic missiles as having ranges greater than 3,400 miles.

The fuel for the advanced engines goes by the tongue-twisting name of unsymmetrical dimethylhydrazine, according to the secret cables. It is a highly toxic, volatile clear liquid with a sharp, fishy smell.

International concern about advances in Iran’s missile program increased last year, after Tehran sent its first satellite into space. Experts said it was clear that the second stage of the rocket, known as the Safir, had employed a new, more powerful class of engines that took advantage of some elements of the Russian technology. American government experts say the engines of the Russian R-27 represent an improvement of roughly 40 percent in lifting force over the kerosene-fired engines that power most Iranian missiles.

“Without this higher-energy output, the Safir would have failed in its mission to orbit a small satellite,” said a report issued in May by the International Institute for Strategic Studies, an arms analysis group in London.

The London group’s report, though, gives no indication of access to the American intelligence assessment. Indeed, the report argued that while Iran had some elements of the R-27 technology, the available public evidence suggested that it had made no purchase of either the complete North Korean missile or its Russian parent.

The cables say that Iran not only obtained the BM-25, but also saw the advanced technology as a way to learn how to design and build a new class of more powerful engines.

“Iran wanted engines capable of using more-energetic fuels,” the Feb. 24 cable said, “and buying a batch of BM-25 missiles gives Iran a set it can work on for reverse engineering.”

The cable added that Tehran could use the BM-25 technologies as “building blocks” for the production of long-range missiles. But it offered no information to back up that assessment.

Andrew W. Lehren contributed reporting.

A version of this article appeared in print on November 29, 2010, on page A12 of the New York edition..

WikiLeaks Gates: No Iranian Help To Taliban

From Informed Comment:

11:05 PM (4 minutes ago)Wikileaks Gates: No Iranian Help to Talibanfrom Informed Comment by Juan

What they tell us:

In summer of 2009, it was revealed that Director of National Intelligence Dennis Blair informed the US Congress that, according to Marcus Baram at HuffP,

“Iran is covertly supplying arms to Afghan insurgents while publicly posing as supportive of the Afghan government.” That includes the provision of small arms, mines, rocket-propelled grenades, rockets, mortars and plastic explosives. Ironically, Blair also noted that Iran has been assisting Afghanistan with developing their security capabilities through the “construction of border security facilities.”

Gen. Stanley McChrystal publicly made similar charges in fall, 2009.

What they tell each other:

According to a newly released wikileaks document, in February of this year, Secretary of Defense Robert M. Gates met with Italian Foreign Minister Franco Frattini. Afghanistan was on the agenda.

Gates “noted that intelligence indicated there was little lethal material crossing the Afghanistan-Iran border.”…

I have been saying for years that the occasional Pentagon or other USG allegations of Iranian support for the hyper-Sunni, Shiite-killing Taliban are just war propaganda. Iran has Afghan President Hamid Karzai on a $2 mn. a year retainer! Why would Tehran want to overthrow him? Gates told Frattini the real story, not the cover story.

It appears that in private they level with other security bureaucrats, but then lie in public to Obama and the Congress.

You could imagine a good Saturday Night Live skit about “Wikileaks Gates” (the honest straight shooter) and “Television Gates” (who says what we’ve all been hearing). And, mind you, Gates is not by any means the worst offender.

South Korean President Lee: North To Pay Price For Attack

From Yahoo News, AFP and the AP:

S.Korea's Lee: North to 'pay price' for attack

S.Korea's Lee: North to 'pay price' for attack

EmailPrint.. AFP – A South Korean Marine is seen during a training event in Taean, 170 kms southwest of Seoul. South Korean …

– Sun Nov 28, 8:40 pm ET

SEOUL (AFP) – South Korean President Lee Myung-Bak on Monday vowed to make North Korea "pay the price" for its "inhumane" artillery attack on a frontline island that killed four people and sparked global outrage.

Lee has come under pressure to take a tougher line against Pyongyang after his military's counter-fire following North Korea's deadly artillery strike on a border island last week was seen as feeble.

"I can't help expressing anger at the North Korean regime's brutality," he said in a nationally televised address.

"Now our people know that any more tolerance and patience will only fan bigger provocations," he said of the regime that has previously tested nuclear bombs and is blamed for sinking a South Korean warship, killing 46 people.

A day after China, North Korea's last major ally, called for emergency talks with Pyongyang, Lee said that it is "difficult to expect North Korea to abandon military brinkmanship and nuclear weapons".

His speech comes as the US and South Korean navies stage a potent show of force against North Korea, carrying out a four-day joint naval exercise led by the nuclear-powered aircraft carrier USS George Washington.

And this, related, from The Marmot's Hole:

President Lee’s morning address

by Robert Koehler on November 29, 2010

As you probably, know President Lee addressed the nation this morning regarding North Korea’s shelling of Yeonpyeong-do.

If you read Korean, you can read the full text of the address here. If not, you can read an English summary at Yonhap.

In the opinion of this humble blogger, Lee said all the right things. He’s clearly tired and pissed off, and rightfully so. The problem is that back in May, he said many of the same things in a special address to the nation regarding the sinking of the Cheonan. In both speeches, he rattled off a list of North Korea’s major provocations, going so far in today’s address as to note that the North Koreans have even tried to kill South Korea’s president twice. But that’s the whole point — the North Koreans HAVE done all this, and have NEVER paid a real price for it. They think Lee (or any South Korean president, really) is a chump: he’s too scared to retaliate, they think, and even if he does want to hit back, the Americans will stop him. In fact, I wonder whether by talking tough, he’s in fact inviting the North Koreans to try to embarrass him again.

And this, the referenced speech, in Hangul (Korean):

이명박 대통령은 29일 오전 10시 청와대에서 북한의 연평도 포격 도발에 대한 대국민 담화를 발표했습니다.

▶다음은 이명박 대통령 ‘연평도 포격 도발에 대한 담화’ 전문 입니다.

존경하는 국민 여러분,

저는 오늘 대통령으로서,

국민의 생명과 재산을 지키지 못한 책임을 통감하며

이 자리에 섰습니다.

이번 북한의 연평도 도발에 대한 대응과정에

국민 여러분의 실망이 컸다는 것도 잘 알고 있습니다.

무고한 우리 국민이 목숨을 잃고

삶의 터전이 파괴된 것에 대해

참으로 안타깝고 송구스런 마음을 금할 수 없습니다.

순국한 서정우 하사와 문광욱 일병,

민간인 희생자 김치백, 배복철씨의 명복을 빌며,

유가족 여러분께 다시 한 번 위로의 말씀을 드립니다.

부상을 당한 분들도

하루 빨리 쾌유하시기를 기원하며,

연평도 주민들을 위한 종합대책 수립을 약속드립니다.

국민 여러분,

북한의 이번 무력도발은

지금까지와는 차원이 다릅니다.

북한은 그동안 수없이 많은 도발을 자행했지만,

우리 영토를 이번처럼 직접 포격한 것은 처음입니다.

더구나 1,400여 명의 주민이

평화롭게 사는 섬마을을

무차별적으로 포격하였습니다.

민간인을 향해 군사 공격을 하는 것은

전시에도 엄격히 금지되는 반인륜적 범죄입니다.

포탄이 떨어진 불과 십여 미터 옆은

학생들이 수업을 하던 곳이었습니다.

어린 생명조차 안중에 없는

북한 정권의 잔혹함에 분노하지 않을 수 없습니다.

세계도 북한을 규탄하고 있습니다.

그동안 우리는 북한의 도발에 대해

참고 또 참아 왔습니다.

1.21 청와대 습격사태, 아웅산 테러 등

북한 정권은 이미 두 차례나

대한민국 국가원수의 목숨을 노렸습니다.

1987년에는 우리 민항기를 폭파하여

115명이 목숨을 잃었습니다.

그럼에도 불구하고 인내를 거듭했던 것은

언젠가는 북한도 변할 것이라는

일말의 기대 때문이었고,

한반도 평화를 향한 의지 때문이었습니다.

그래서 지난 20여 년간 우리는

대화와 협력을 통해 북핵 문제 해결을 위해 노력했고,

인도적 지원도 아끼지 않았습니다.

그러나 우리에게 돌아온 것은

핵개발과 천안함 폭침에 이은 연평도 포격이었습니다.

이제 북한 스스로

군사적 모험주의와 핵을 포기하는 것을

기대하기 힘들다는 것을 알게 됐습니다.

더 이상의 인내와 관용은

더 큰 도발만을 키운다는 것을

우리 국민은 분명히 알게 되었습니다.

그동안 북한 정권을 옹호해 온 사람들도

이제 북의 진면모를 깨닫게 되었을 것이라고 생각합니다.

협박에 못 이긴 ‘굴욕적 평화’는

결국 더 큰 화를 불러온다는 것이 역사의 교훈입니다.

어떠한 위협과 도발에도 물러서지 않고 맞서는 용기만이

‘진정한 평화’를 가져올 것입니다.

앞으로 북의 도발에는

반드시 응분의 대가를 치르게 할 것입니다.

저는 우리 국민의 용기와 저력을 믿습니다.

우리는 북한의 끊임없는 위협과 도발 속에서도

2010년 세계 7대 수출국을 이룬 위대한 국민입니다.

이번 국가적인 위기상황에서도

우리 국민들은 애국심과 의연함을 보여주셨습니다.

순국 사병들의 빈소를 찾은 신세대 청년들,

자발적으로 성금모금에 나선 시민들,

흔들림 없이 제 자리를 지킨 국민들,

여러분들이 있기에 대한민국은 건재합니다.

천안함 폭침을 놓고

국론이 분열되었던 것과는 달리,

이번처럼 국민의 단합된 모습 앞에서는

북한의 어떠한 분열 책동도 발붙이지 못할 것입니다.

저는 우리 국민과 함께

결단코 물러서지 않을 것입니다.

국제사회도 우리를 지지하고 있습니다.

미국, 일본, 독일, 영국 정상들 뿐만 아니라

러시아를 포함한 많은 나라들이

북한의 만행을 규탄하고

우리의 입장을 적극 지지해 주었습니다.

특히 미국은 동맹으로서

강력한 대응의지를 행동으로 보여주었습니다.

존경하는 국민 여러분,

우리 장병들은 용감히 싸웠습니다.

포탄이 빗발치는 가운데

철모에 불이 붙은 줄도 모르고 임무를 다했습니다.

휴가 나가던 장병들은 즉시 부대로 달려갔습니다.

국민 여러분,

앞으로 정부가 해야할 일은 확실히 하겠습니다.

우리 군을 군대다운 군대로 만들겠습니다.

서해 5도는 어떠한 도발에도 철통같이 지킬 것입니다.

우리 군을 더 강하게 만들기 위한 국방개혁은

계획대로 더욱 강력하게 추진하겠습니다.

국민 여러분,

지금은 백 마디 말보다 행동으로 보일 때입니다.

정부와 군을 믿고 힘을 모아주십시오.

하나된 국민이 최강의 안보입니다.


And here, the speech, from Yonhap, in English:
(2nd LD) Lee vows retaliation for N. Korea over 'inhumane' attacks By Lee Chi-dong

SEOUL, Nov. 29 (Yonhap) -- President Lee Myung-bak on Monday condemned North Korea's deadly shelling of a South Korean border island as an "inhumane crime" and pledged strong retaliation against Pyongyang for any future provocations.

Delivering a televised speech to the nation, Lee offered a rare public apology for the government's much-criticized response to a rain of North Korean artillery shells on Yeonpyeong Island near the tense Yellow Sea border on Nov. 23.

The president said he feels responsible for the deaths of two South Korean marines and two civilians and enormous property damage to island residents from the North's artillery assault.

"As the president, I stand here today with a sense of full responsibility" for the failure to protect the lives and property of the people, the grim-faced conservative president said.

"A military attack on civilians is a crime against humanity strictly prohibited even during a war."

The North launched a sudden barrage of shells at the populated island of Yeonpyeong off the west coast, a long-time flash point between the rival armed forces, which still remain technically at war after the 1950-53 Korean War ended in a cease-fire. The latest attack, the North's first direct strike on the South's soil since the end of the war, also wounded nearly 20 others.

Lee said that some artillery rounds fired by the North pounded an area just about 10 meters away from a school on the island.

"I can't contain my anger over the North Korean regime's cruelty that ignores even the lives of children," Lee said. "(South Korea) will make North Korea pay the due price by all means for its provocation from now on."

The president said South Korea is running out of patience, although it has endeavored to resolve the North Korean nuclear crisis through dialogue and cooperation and has lavished its communist neighbor with humanitarian aid. He said the South had hopes that the North would change its course someday.

"However, what has returned to us is nuclear development and the artillery shelling of Yeonpyeong Island" after the sinking of a South Korean warship, the Cheonan, in March, he said. "Now, we know that it is difficult to expect North Korea to abandon its nuclear (weapons) and military brinkmanship on its own."

Lee's statement came a day after he negatively reacted to China's proposal to hold an emergency meeting of the top envoys to the long-stalled six-nation talks on the termination of Pyongyang's nuclear weapons drive. Pyongyang unveiled its new uranium enrichment facility earlier this month, adding to its decades-long plutonium-based nuclear program.

When the president addressed the nation in late May shortly after the North was found to have torpedoed the Cheonan, he did not make a public apology.

Lee appealed to the South Korean people for unity, saying a "unified people" would take national security to its strongest level.

He asked the people to trust the government and the military, saying he will carry out an overhaul of the armed forces as planned.