Tuesday, March 24, 2015

How the first Rocket Inventor Would Have Never Been Allowed to Immigrate By Pres. Ted Cruz

From Physics Today

"It's the birthday of Wernher von Braun, who was born in 1912 in Wyrzysk, Poland. Braun studied rocketry and mechanical engineering at the Berlin Institute of Technology. He went on to earn a PhD in physics from the University of Berlin in 1934. His thesis, on liquid-propellent rocket engines, was classified by the Nazi regime. Braun joined Germany's rocket R&D program. By the end of World War II, thousands of the V-2 rockets that he had designed and which were built by slave labor had been fired at London and Antwerp. Braun and members of his team surrendered to the US Army at the end of the war; they were taken to the US, where they formed the nucleus of America's rocket and space program. Braun's career culminated in design, development and construction of NASA's Saturn V rocket, which remains the only launch vehicle to have carried astronauts to the Moon."
Von Braun was an amazing individual - he was WAY ahead of his time. He was definitely way ahead of all the others in the years before World War II in his grasp of rockets and the possible...

In America, where is that vision today?  I see talking points aimed at primary voters but I don't see a real global vision of how America wins in a world on fire. Not from any of those running for President. All I see them offering to throw more gasoline on the fires.

I don't see it in Ted Cruz, whose idea of following Jesus would be to deny care to the sick--he actually shut down our government over the idea of people getting healthcare. That ego stunt cost taxpayers $24 billion. Ted Cruz Jesus would not be dividing bread for the 5,000.
Quite the opposite. They would go hungry. Where the Affordable Healthcare Act giveth, Cruz would taketh away.

Nor do I see Mr. Cruz, or Jeb Bush or any other GOP candidate with a space vision--which actually is VITAL to our national security and future prosperity.  Not since JFK has any president been bold on space. 

What the Germans did during World War II was bold by picking a young Polish man and let him build the impossible. They were seeking cutting edge high technology and it almost won them the war. Their V-2 rockets would have soon reached New York. Their atom bomb program that was only stopped when two Norwegians managed to blow up their sole source of heavy water made in a secret plant in Norway, after numerous bombings had failed. 

After the war, the USA got the services of Mr. Braun, who helped build NASA that lead to an amazing skill upgrade for America. One wonders if he had been an illegal immigrant, if Mr. Cruz would allow him into the country! In fact we are denying entry to talented people like von braun because our immigration law is so out of date and broken.

Today China is building high tech and space tech which we have neglected because of a lack of vision. They cornered the market on rare earth materials needed to make computers, satellites and anything high tech worth building. And they did it on a global scale while Congress fiddled in Washington. 

China has invested in education while education investment has declined substantially under the party of Cruz in my home state of Texas.  With Mr. Cruz' blessing, Texas has shorted education funding over $5.4 billion, despite a huge SURPLUS in the budget -- and despite more than 70,000 new students arriving in the state every year. 

Its school financing system has been ruled unconstitutional. Yet Texas legislators still have not made vital changes to give Texas kids a chance in this new global high tech economy. That failure is why China is producing more scientists than we are and is building its own Space Station. Instead of investing in education Texas GOP leaders want to give the money away in tax cuts to the wealthiest.  It's beyond short-sighted.

A real road-map and American vision is set out in the "Agenda for American Greatness"  linked below. The goal:  Make America No. 1 again!  

I have negotiated worldwide and know what the balance of power technology looks like. Photo evidence of those changes over the last 30 years is in my book "Better Times Ahead April Fool."

Compare the vision in Agenda for American Greatness to Mr. Cruz's -- and let's discuss.

P.S. JIM BAKER, former Secretary of State, is a Republican who outclasses today's Cruz's  by a thousand percent.


Saturday, March 21, 2015

Gerrymandering is Killing American Democracy - and Giving Us a Crazy Congress of Lunatics

It has been announced that House Speaker Boehner is going to ISRAEL to meet with Mr. Netanyahu, Israel's Prime Minister. The Constitution gives international affairs to the PRESIDENT not 535 members of Congress. 

There is nothing worse than an uppity Congressman. Or more DANGEROUS to American security. A house member trying to sabotage a President is one thing. But house members negotiating with foreign leaders is unprecedented. It is inappropriate at best, treason at the worst. Neither are good for our country. American speaks with one voice through the President, not 535 voices crying in the wilderness.

Our Congress politics is now so low that it includes attempted SABOTAGE of our economic revival from Day 1 of the election of President Obama, who inherited the worst economy since the Great Depression.

It now extends to SABOTAGE of a NUCLEAR AGREEMENT with IRAN. The same Congress that threw America into two wars they never bothers to pay for now want to throw gasoline on a potential deal that would avoid an even deadlier war.  That is not only sick but STUPID - says this terrorism analyst who did predict 911 and has the tapes on YouTube to prove it.

We are electing such shallow representatives that it has turned into SICK politics. It is no longer about competing views on a bill. It is all about poison pills, making up false facts,  pettiness, disrespect of an elected President, and continued attempts to rob from the poor to give to the already filthy rich. It's crazier than a rabid shunk.

It's cynical. It is the opposite of what we need to move the country forward. 

Gerrymandering is the reason for this sickness.  Our Congress reps are picked by the most extreme voters in rigged primaries. How does that work?

The winner of the primary automatically wins in November because the district boundaries are rigged. So the real choice was made in the primary by partisan voters, not in November where even independents and others can vote --there vote doesn't vote at that point. So the Congress winner (and state office winner) was picked by maybe 10% of the voters in that district! 

I experienced this personally - seeing three different boundaries in three elections in the same district when Republicans were designing districts in Texas (details in my book 'Better Times Ahead April Fool'). 

Picking our Congress members from gerrymandered districts in rigged primaries --where the most extreme control -- makes the November vote pointless in most districts. It screws the minority party and independents alike.

As a result of gerrymandering we get these small men (and women) who now play political games instead of doing their jobs. Many of them exhibit incredible ignorance about basic facts while collecting $185,000 a year up to show up 100 days a year. They get government paid for health care while telling Americans that they can't have the same thing. 

It's pathetic and hypocritical. How does America win when our own Congress is sabotaging progress?  Only the rich and privileged can afford to play these stupid political games when the world is on fire -- from Ukraine to the Middle East. Ordinary people don't have that luxury.

The U.S. Senate can't even multi-task, like most American workers have to do everyday, by debating one bill and voting on other things on the agenda, like the next attorney general we need in office doing that job for the taxpayers. Voter her up or down but hold the damn vote! (same thing on immigration; Boehner has refused to hold a vote on the bill because he knows it would pass).

Instead of doing their jobs in the U.S. Senate, Mr. McConnell and Cornyn are making Ms. Lynch wait longer than any Attorney General nominee in the history of the United States!  That is putting her at the back of the bus, literally and figuratively. If they hate Eric Holder so much, why are they holding up his departure by not voting on his replacement?

Gerrymandering has led to this Congress which is willing to put the American people at the back of the bus too -- wasting weeks avoiding the vote, interfering with our foreign relations, offering budgets to take even more from the poorest to give to the richest. It's madness. 

They need to grow up and we need to eliminate gerrymandering before it kills America. It already is.

Check out "Agenda for American Greatness" for solutions (FREE, at the link above). Pas it on.

Stay tuned and follow for updates....or on Facebook

Friday, March 20, 2015

How Our Ignorant Congress is Sabotaging America's Future Success

I first saw India as a legal negotiator in 1979, China in 1982. Went to Syria in 1996 for a child kidnapping negotiation as a young entrepreneur lawyer. They were crowded then. They were stable then.

It is worse now. Action needs to be taken.  Iraq opened Pandora's Box.

It's not being fixed because we have been electing hillbilly congress reps who are totally clueless. They have never traveled on business globally. In fact, they have never been anywhere (beyond Frog Jump Arkansas, or Corpus Christi), but are so "expert" on everything, right? lol.

Mr. Cotton's breach of protocol with Iran could result in making a nuclear event MORE likely because of that ignorance about the real world that I have seen the last 30 years.

Global wars and country instability will INCREASE in coming years because of climate disruption. California is now in such a drought the USA could lose its vegetable food supply.

Even conservatives in Europe recognize climate change is real!

The only logical conclusion is that our conservatives apparently are the dumbest group in the entire world. They are the only ones left on the entire planet that don't believe in man-made climate change, or addressing it. LOL.

Now isn't that special? 

Some REAL Solutions are in Agenda for American Greatness.

Let's debate something real for a change.

No charge.  Thank you.  Pass it on.

Monday, March 16, 2015

How War With Iran Could Cost More American Lives in 5 Minutes Than Iraq Did in 10 Years

          Last Military Simulation of Conflict with Iran Ended Worse than Pearl Harbor

There is bold talk by some in Congress that WAR with IRAN is a solution if the nuclear talks don't work out. This reminds me of the loose talk before the Iraq invasion when I was a terrorism analyst, the lone voice in the wilderness opposing it at the time. 

However, we DO have evidence of what a short conflict with Iran would look like - and how it would end. Ugly, very ugly.

 A 2002 military exercise simulating a "War with IRAN" took place. Result? America's worst naval disaster since Pearl Harbor.   The military stopped it after we lost 16 ships including an aircraft carrier! We could lose more people in 5 minutes than we lost in Iraq in over 10 years!

Before we convince ourselves to kick open yet another Pandora's Box, read the following--because some of the Senators and Congress reps urging a military solution don't even know that Tehran has been the capitol of Iran for thousands of years--that's how little they know about the real world (sad to say, but I have more global negotiating experience than the entire current GOP Presidential field!).

Below is a description of the exercise and results of a realistic war game called Millennium Challenge
(It's a warning not to believe rosy predictions of easy victory -- like we heard before the Iraq invasion that created ISIS and cost us over $6 TRILLION dollars and countless lives ruined). Pass it on!

Iranian ship killer "Sunburn" missile - based on Russian technology

"                                       I
NEWS BRIEF: "Myth Of US Invincibility Floats In The Persian Gulf", Rense.com, 4-16-2005
"During the summer of 2002, in the run-up to President Bush's invasion of Iraq, the US military staged the most elaborate and expensive war games ever conceived. Operation Millennium Challenge, as it was called, cost some $250 million, and required two years of planning ... it was set in the Persian Gulf, and simulated a conflict with a hypothetical rogue state. The "war" involved heavy use of computers, and was also played out in the field by 13,500 US troops, at 17 different locations and 9 live-force training sites. All of the services participated under a single joint command, known as JOINTFOR. The US forces were designated as 'Force Blue', and the enemy as OPFOR, or 'Force Red'. The 'war' lasted three weeks and ended with the overthrow of the dictatorial regime on August 15."
"At any rate, that was the official outcome. What actually happened was quite different, and ought to serve up a warning about the grave peril the world will face if the US should become embroiled in a widening conflict in the region ..."
This is not the first time that the American high command has fudged the results of a war gaming exercise because the real results would be very embarrassing to all U.S. leadership, from the White House down to the Pentagon. In the early years of the Clinton Administration, America's top guns -- her elite fighter pilots -- engaged in an war gaming exercise with Israeli pilots. The American aces were humiliated, so much so that the Pentagon discreetly asked the Israeli government not to publicize the results! The story I read was very small and buried deeply in our local paper.
Now, let us return to this news story. The American officer leading the "enemy" -- the "Force Red" team -- was "the straight-talking Marine commander who had been brought out of retirement to lead Force Red. His name was Lt. Gen. Paul Van Riper, and he had played the role of the crazed but cunning leader of the hypothetical rogue state ... In the first days of the 'war', Van Riper's Force Red sent most of the US fleet to the bottom of the Persian Gulf." (Ibid.)
The tactics adopted by this Marine Corps general were astounding and they produced "The Worst US Naval Disaster Since Pearl Harbor".
"The war game was described as 'free play', meaning that both sides were unconstrained, free to pursue any tactic in the book of war in the service of victory ... Much of the action was computer-generated. But representative military units in the field also acted out the various moves and countermoves. The comparison to a chess match is not inaccurate. The vastly superior US armada consisted of the standard carrier battle group with its full supporting cast of ships and planes. Van Riper had at his disposal a much weaker flotilla of smaller vessels, many of them civilian craft, and numerous assets typical of a Third World country." (Ibid.)
"But Van Riper made the most of weakness. Instead of trying to compete directly with Force Blue, he utilized ingenious low-tech alternatives. Crucially, he prevented the stronger US force from eavesdropping on his communications by foregoing the use of radio transmissions. Van Riper relied on couriers instead to stay in touch with his field officers ... At every turn, the wily Van Riper did the unexpected. And in the process he managed to achieve an asymmetric advantage ... Astutely and very covertly, Van Riper armed his civilian marine craft and deployed them near the US fleet, which never expected an attack from small pleasure boats ... Force Red's prop-driven aircraft suddenly were swarming around the US warships, making Kamikaze dives. Some of the pleasure boats made suicide attacks. Others fired Silkworm cruise missiles from close range, and sunk a carrier, the largest ship in the US fleet, along with two helicopter-carriers loaded with marines ... the Navy was unprepared. When it was over, most of the US fleet had been destroyed. Sixteen US warships lay on the bottom, and the rest were in disarray. Thousands of American sailors were dead, dying, or wounded.
"If the games had been real, it would have been the worst US naval defeat since Pearl Harbor." (Ibid.)

Clearly, this war games disaster was something the Pentagon could not have foreseen. Publicly, Pentagon spokesmen admitted of no disaster, since, in war gaming, destroyed equipment and dead sailors can be "resurrected" at the touch of a keyboard. At the end, the government of the rogue state was overthrown and victory achieved -- but only after General Van Riper quit in disgust. Oh, yes, and the Pentagon did not admit that they had anything to learn and insisted there was nothing they needed to change.
But, you may argue, surely they knew better internally and were working madly to change tactics so they would not have this kind of real disaster, from a real enemy, who can really kill our sailors and marines. You may be right, except for the fact that most of the reasons for this disaster are systemic and cannot be easily or quickly corrected. How can this be?
The first problem is that the Navy has heavily invested in equipment which does not work effectively in close-in places like the Persian Gulf. In other words, our Navy was created, and equipped, to fight a blue-water enemy out in the open ocean, and is very vulnerable to a determined close-in enemy using unconventional tactics. Listen as this article explains this terrible reality.
"... instead of being over the horizon like the Navy would normally fight, and at stand-off ranges that would enable their protective systems to be employed, now they're sitting right off the shore ... where you're looking at them. I mean, the models and simulation that we put together, it couldn't make a distinction (between enemy vessels vs friendly) ... all of a sudden, whoops, there they are. And that's about the time he attacked ..."
"Gen. Kernan's nuanced defense was that the simulation had necessarily been conducted in the vicinity of busy sea lanes, hence, in the presence of live commercial shipping; and this required the Navy to 'turn off' some of its defenses, which it would not have done in a real wartime situation. All of which is probably true, but the general's remark that in a real Gulf war the fleet would be deployed differently, in a stand-off manner, with its over-the-horizon defenses fully operable, was a misrepresentation of the actual situation in the Persian Gulf, today. The US Navy's biggest problem operating in Gulf waters are the constraints that the region's confined spaces impose on US naval defenses, which were designed for the open sea. The Persian Gulf is nothing but a large lake, after all, and in such an environment the Navy's over-the-horizon defenses are seriously compromised. Nor can the Navy withdraw to a safe distance, so long as its close-in presence is required to support the US occupation forces in Iraq. The serious implications of this simple fact for a possible future conflict, for instance, involving Iran, have never, to my knowledge, been discussed in the US press." (Ibid.)
As the interview with General Kernan continued, he kept talking about the Navy operating "over-the-horizon", which is fine if you are fighting the blue-water Russian navy in the open ocean; however, if the US Navy is fighting an Iranian force of quick, mobile fighting ships and boats, and aircraft, all of which are equipped with Russian-made supersonic missiles, losses are likely to be staggering, just as this war simulation demonstrated.
General Kernan should not have been surprised, because earlier studies had reported that these kind of problems existed, and were not reserved just for the Iranians.
"As recently as 1997 some forty different nations possessed these awesome weapons (anti-ship cruise missiles). By 2000 the number had jumped to 70, with at least 100 different types identified, and a dozen different nations actively pursuing their own production and research/development programs ... why are anti-ship cruise missiles so attractive? The answer is that they are relatively simple to develop, especially in comparison with ballistic missiles. Cruise missiles can be constructed from many of the same readily available parts and components used in commercial aviation. They are also reliable and effective, easy to deploy and use, and are relatively inexpensive. Even poor nations can afford them. One cruise missile represents but a tiny fraction of the immense expenditure of capital the US has invested in each of its 300 active warships. Yet, a single cruise missile can sink or severely disable any ship in the US Navy."
Now, listen carefully to this next revelation, for it validates a fact Cutting Edge reported several years ago, when we posted an article entitled, "Has Russian Technology Just Doomed The U.S. Naval Fleet?", NEWS1449. A key factor which rendered the American fleet so vulnerable to these Russian supersonic anti-ship missiles was that they flew so quickly, American protective radars could not react quickly enough to track the incoming missile, plot a solution, and fire the defensive gattling guns. This next revelation validates our concerns, and the source is highly believable, for it is the U.S. Congressional (Government) Accounting Office.
"According to the GAO (Government Accounting Office) report, 'the key to defeating cruise missile threats is in gaining additional reaction time', so that ships can detect, identify and destroy the attacking missiles. The thorny problem, as I've pointed out, is that the Navy's long-range AWAC's and intermediate-range Aegis radar defense systems are significantly less effective in littoral (or coastal) environments, the Persian Gulf being the prime example." (Ibid.)
Here we have two distinctively different problems, which combine to produce a very fatal result.
1) American anti-ship missile protective radar cannot reach a solution quickly enough to fire the protective guns fast enough to kill the incoming supersonic missiles flying at 1,700 miles per hour.
2) American radar systems were not designed for coastal situations, where an enemy can hide and pop out to fire quickly at a passing ship and then get out of harm's way. No, U.S. radar is designed to track an enemy vessel "over the horizon", plot a solution, fire the missile, and kill the enemy ship without ever physically seeing it. Smaller vessels firing a variety of close-in weaponry -- including the supersonic ship killers -- can get in under this American radar, and score the kill.
You just do not change this kind of wrong weaponry problem overnight. Meanwhile, the Russians are proceeding quickly to make their ship-killers even more deadly.
"The other important factor is that cruise missile technology itself is racing ahead. The GAO report warned that the next generation of anti-ship missiles that will begin to appear by 2007 will be faster and stealthier, and will also be equipped with advanced target-seekers, i.e., advanced guidance systems. In fact, one of these advanced anti-ship cruise missiles is already available: the Russian-made Yakhonts missile. It flies at close to Mach 3 (three times the speed of sound), can hit a squirrel in the eye, and has a range of 185 miles: enough range to target the entire Persian Gulf (from Iran), shredding Gen. Kernan's glib remark that in a real war the US expeditionary force will stand-off in safety 'over the horizon' while mounting an amphibious attack. Nonsense. Henceforth, in a real Gulf war situation there will be no standing off in safety. The Yakhonts missile has already erased the concept of the horizon, at least, within the Persian Gulf, and it has done so without ever having been fired in combat---yet ... By their own admission the Russians developed the Yakhonts missile for export. No doubt, it was high on Iran's shopping list." (Ibid.)
The concluding information is truly sobering.
"... for a variety of reasons the Navy's forecasts for upgrading US ship defenses against cruise missile attack are overly optimistic. The Navy's own data shows that there will be no silver bullet. The technology gap is structural, and will not be overcome for many years, if at all. US warships will be vulnerable to cruise missile attack into the foreseeable future, perhaps increasingly so ... the most vulnerable ship in the US fleet is none other than the flagship itself, the big Nimitz-class carriers."
The knowledge that our mighty carriers are extremely vulnerable to these anti-ship missiles is not new information, nor is it limited to naval experts. During the early days of the Iraq invasion (March - April, 2003), I talked at length with a family friend who had recently retired from the Army as a Major. He gave me much good advice, including the status of our aircraft carriers if they faced a determined enemy equipped with modern missiles. He said that our carriers were "just sitting ducks". Yet, most Americans still believe that the safest place to be stationed during a battle is on a carrier.
The author of this article then concludes his assessment.
"Just think: If Van Riper could accomplish what he did with Silkworms, the lowly scuds of the cruise missile family, imagine what could happen if the US Navy, sitting in the Gulf like so many ducks, should face a massed-attack of supersonic Yakhonts missiles, a weapon that may well be unstoppable?"

Monday, March 9, 2015

Scott Kelly: One of our space Ambassadors with our earthly neighbors...and not just Russia

                                          Astronaut Scott Kelly, left, Russian cosmonaut Gennady Padalka of the 
                                            Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos), center, and Russian cosmonaut Mikhail Kornienko

March 27th! Almost here. Houston's Scott Kelly takes off with a Russian to arm wrestle in the International Space Station (ISS). NOT.

I have met Scott at his home in Houston. NICE guy! He will be in space with Russia's Mikhail during strange times between the US and Russia since the "cold war" Soviet days -- due to Ukraine...

If Putin had not gone nuts and  sent his troops and military hardware into the Crimea and East Ukraine we'd still be buddies.

Astronauts, fortunately, are not politicians; they could be more valuable as our space Ambassadors with our earthly neighbors...and not just Russia.

We really need to involve CHINA since they are going to the moon independently from us - and will have their own NEW space station when ours is falling into the ocean due to Congress neglect and old age. China has the hordes of cash needed to be in the space business - and their kids at tops in the world of science and math. 

Right now, an astronaut like Scott cannot even LEGALLY talk to a Chinese astronaut, or official for that matter...Now isn't that just silly? I've been a terrorism analyst and international lawyer who has been to China and it is beyond silly. It's a short-sighted, foolish policy to continue. Because otherwise they will pass us by due to Congress' inaction and poor funding.

I have and will be covering this issue in Global American Values blog...follow the fast moving world that impacts our lives every day.  

Stay informed to stay ahead.

Michael Fjetland, Publisher & Editor
Global American Values blog
Author, Better Times Ahead April Fool
Houses of Straw

Armor Glass blog

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Give George W Bush Credit for Showing Up at Selma's 50th When Most GOP Leadership Didn't Bother

Give George W Bush Credit for Showing Up at Selma's 50th When Most GOP Leadership Didn't Bother. 

I opposed his war in Iraq while on TV as a terrorism adviser (story at www.BettertimesAheadprilFool.com). Yet I am willing to give W credit for showing up at this historic occasion when most of the current GOP leadership could not be bothered.

That shows the current state of the GOP, who are either hostile to minorities of all kinds --and/or are afraid being seen with the President since they know it would get them "primaried" in the next election. The next candidate would claim that "Incumbent X" didn't hate Obama enough because he did go to Selma.  It's crazy. And getting crazier.

That happens because gerrymandering districts --today's common practice--gives the most extreme candidate the edge. The moderates on both sides who get things done are left out.

It is the politicians stacking the political deck like a card shark does with the marked cards. They pick their voters instead of the voters picking them.

Gerrymandering is covered in the chapter "Predicting 911 and Running Against the Hammer" in Better Times Ahead April Fool, my true global adventure story. "Running Against the Hammer" refers to when I ran against the most powerful Congressman of the time (his nickname was "The Hammer"). I saw 3 different boundaries in the same district in 3 consecutive election cycles....

Gerrymandering and our own extremists in Congress are killing our ability to get important things done. Right now it can't even do simple things easily - like funding Homeland Security! 

This is sabotaging our future. 

Let Congress prove otherwise by doing these things:

  •  Actually PASSING a new Voting Rights Act that President's Obama and Bush support.

  • Let Congress ENACT CYBER-Security legislation -- which it has failed to address, despite foreign governments and global crooks stealing our most secret of secrets (like the designs to the billion dollar F-35 program) as well as our citizens social security numbers.

  • Let's see Congress finally invest in America's 100 year old infrastructure, from bridges to roads and pipelines. Half of Houston's water is wasted from leaks. 50 year old gas pipelines are exploding in neighborhoods all the time, and it will get worse if neglected. MILLIONS of jobs would be created and our kids would have a better future infrastructure to keep America in the lead.
Follow Global American Values blog and/or Like us on Facebook to stay up on these events that impact the future prosperity of every American.

For details on Better Times Ahead April Fool click here.

Monday, March 2, 2015

If Obama Were Like Putin the GOP Leaders Would Be in Jail or DEAD now - Fox Would Be Shut Down

2 March 2015
Texas Independence Day

Republicans have said how much they admire Russia’s Vladmir Putin’s “leadership style” over President Obama’s. If Obama was like Putin, the GOP leaders would be either in jail, exile or DEAD. People like Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck, Fox executives would be off the air and so would FOX NEWS. Do they really have a clue what Putin is like?

The latest incident in Moscow proves it.  Be careful what you wish for.  Putin is Frank Underwood (House of Cards) on steroids, with nukes! Except Putin couldn't care less what even Frank Underwood thinks.

Putin has turned Russia into a country Mafia. Except if it was a room with just Putin and the Godfather Michael Corleone, it would be Corleone getting the bullet. 

The killing of Putin's most vocal opponent who dared remain in Russia -- Boris Nemtsov—was clearly a cold, deliberate, bold assassination.  Doing it in the shadow of the Kremlin is like having your opponent shot on the steps of the capitol. It is not unlike what happened to JFK, MLK and Robert Kennedy in the U.S.  

Boris was not the first opponent of Putin to catch a bullet – or be poisoned.  More than six have been killed since the 1990’s. One woman reporter was shot to death in her apartment entrance. The poison was delivered in an umbrella in London on the street. That’s how Putin rolls.

Putin now rules like a dictator on the level of a Saddam or Kim Jung Un in North Korea. Americans need to realize that he is far more dangerous than ISIS. He is far more dangerous than China, Kim Jung Un, or Iran. Putin has gone rogue on a whole new level.

Putin--the ex-KGB man--has engineered a series of unnecessary, dangerous confrontations and land grabs from Georgia, the Crimea, and now eastern Ukraine. Which country will he attack next?

Putin has turned Russia into an oligarchy--run by a few super rich billionaire friends who keep contracts as long as they don’t oppose him politically--and a nation of fear. The fear and hate is fed to the public 24/7 by state-controlled media that praises Putin and blames ALL of their troubles on the United States. 

Does it help us to have the people of a major nuclear power run by a one-man mafia lying about us every day 24/7?

Most Americans have no idea that millions of Russians are being told on their "Fox" TV that Putin is wonderful and the U.S. is the reason for their inflation and lousy job situation!  Russian media NEVER mentions that Putin's budget was based on $100 oil and it went to half that. You either clap for Putin or get condemned as a traitor. There is no "Meet the Press" of opponents and talking points. The opponents are dead or living outside Russia, in fear.

His air force has been having near misses crossing over borders of almost every European country. Ukraine has seen a ridiculous series of promises by Putin not kept--arming rebels and supplying tons of advanced weapons like GRAD rockets to the rebels who rain it down on civilian and soldier alike. Inch by inch Putin is stealing Ukraine, like Saddam tried to take Kuwait.

ISIS is a threat but not a nuclear threat. Russia is. China will be.

Stay tuned. If Putin has the nerve to kill a man in sight of the Kremlin, he is capable of anything."Follow" to keep advised as a Global Tsunami of threats come our way, and events unfold....

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Which GOP Candidate Has Foreign Experience - More than Me~! NONE....But Hillary does...

Dismissing an expert seems to be in vogue by the mindless these days. I just heard on a "Meet the Press" discussion about the GOP candidates for President, not one of them has any real foreign experiences (or knowledge for that matter).

Not Rick Perry, not Ted Cruz, not Scott Walker, not Jeb Bush, not even Donald Trump!  Come to think of it, after having been blown off by trolls as a "know nothing," NONE of the GOP Presidential candidates at CPAC can even match my bio of expertise (negotiations in over 50 countries including child kidnaping in Syria) and time as a terrorism expert on TV!

The ONLY person in the Presidential pack with more global expertise than little ole me and all the GOP candidates is Hillary Clinton, who had an intense global schedule as Secretary of State. It is impossible to top being the chief global political negotiator for the United States as a qualification to be an astute President.  Perry's guided tours of foreign countries is not experience; Scott Walker or Chris Christie going to London is not experience -- it is being a tourist!  They know about as much as I did as a naive young attorney three decades ago whose first trip abroad was Nicaragua after growing up on a farm in Iowa, and that was nothing. LOL. Being President is not for global amateurs - not with ISIS, China, India, Russia competing to win in the global economy.

My final advice on social media: NEVER waste your time arguing with cement-heads (you won't change ISIS mentality by talking any more than our own trolls or zealots). 

You can try to speak Spock logic to them, but without a mind meld, I am afraid that's an impossible task. Beam me up Scotty! We miss Spock's logic down here. lol

That's how I roll.

WHAT makes Kids from 90 countries Join ISIS? How about AMERICAN produced VIDEOS?

WHAT makes Kids from 90 countries Join ISIS? How about AMERICAN produced VIDEOS?

What force is ISIS/ISIL using that is sucking in kids from 90 countries around the world, including the U.S. and Europe?  Part of it could be due to their social media videos being produced by a U.S. person. Yep, an AMERICAN, with unique video editing skills not found in the Middle East could well be the key in making this sick bunch look like Hollywood.

This is apparently a “shock” to people. The sad truth is that professional video editing is likely the reason ISIS/ISIL has been successful sucking in innocent middle-class Muslim kids from around the world into its black hole of death. Estimates are that about 150-200 of them are from the U.S., 2,000 – 3,000 from Europe and the rest from other countries, making up about a total of 20,000 to 30,000 members (good enough to defeat a much larger Iraqi army.) That’s out of 1.5 BILLION Muslims worldwide (mathematically 30,000 of 1.5 billion is 0.002%!). So you can see why no President has framed this as a ‘war against Islam’ because that would be both wrong and nuts!

The ISIS/ISIL videos are not the boring ones that grandpa Osama bin laden did. Osama was like the YouTuber who thinks an hour of them yakking into a camera is exciting to see. I recall from my days doing television terrorism analysis that bin Laden’s videos mostly consisted of one guy (him) sitting with a rifle, blabbering for an hour! Just words and a stale presentation.  A couple shots of him firing an AK-47. No black uniforms. Definitely not an Oscar winner or nomination there.

ISIS is Osama 3.0 with modern Internet and Social Media fueling recruits. They show ACTION-- lots of U.S. style quick edits of reality TV-type people talking trash and doing stuff (like breaking 3,000 year old ancient artifacts recently -- using slow motion scenes of statues falling, accompanied by a singing soundtrack in Arabic in the background!

WHY do kids from Europe or the U.S. (or 90 other countries) go to ISIS? Is it just the slick videos that an American created?  Are they really aware of the hell hole they are stepping into? 

You have to know that fact in order to know how to address it. Then we know HOW to STOP it from taking more innocent youth into their dark, violent, intolerant world. It's a world where women are used as breeding stock, bought and traded like sex slaves. It's a world that hates every religion, even other Muslims! It kills Shia Muslims because even they are not "pure" enough. Christians are but one of many minority sects assaulted by this genocidal mob of ignorant men who act like a religious mafia. 

ISIS is insane level intolerance. It's  one step removed from what happens in Congress today. Congress isn't shooting anyone except from drones; Congress displays intolerance when it prefers to starve people to death by cutting food stamps or denying them medical care! lol.

Do these kids go to join ISIS because they have no job or self-esteem? 

Or because they were abused by police and the authorities like "Jihadi John" claims? If police can shoot minority kids like Michael Brown and countless others, could you see how they might be attracted to fight back via ISIS?

Or do these kids travel to Turkey in order to cross into Syria and its horrors chambers for something else? 

I have worked globally including the Middle East. I was treated with respect and I treated them with respect. I found people extraordinarily helpful and kind even when I couldn’t speak their language.   I have seen what being poor is like to self-esteem. I have seen prejudice against people because of their color or religion or sexual preferences. None of this is helpful.  

I think these kids go for some or all of the above reasons. If you can’t get into school in America or Europe, why not go where they give you a gun and you feel like a hero?  It’s not until they get there will they realize their cell phones are taken away and they become raw meat for the front lines and a pawn who can’t escape Pandora’s Box they just opened.

We must change our own thinking to address all of it to solve it.

Our youth need education opportunities and jobs. Adults need to leave the world a better place for them than we found it. 

We as individuals need to break out of our mental silos and–and our comfort zone—and get to know people of other cultures and religions that live in America. I found them to be people just like you and me when you finally break bread together over a meal and meet their families.  I wrote of these things in Better Times Ahead April Fool.  I never landed in a new country without having butterflies in my stomach. But every time it proved to be a rich and rewarding experience in what I saw and learned. Do some traveling!

Congress has been more interested in fueling political wars than creating jobs by rebuilding our crumbling infrastructure and investing in leading this global, high tech 21st century. They can’t even vote to FUND HOMELAND SECURITY department during all these new threats! If that isn’t an indictment of our own petty purists who put partisanship in front of American security, nothing is!

We people cannot wait on small-minded politicians to make it better. Start reaching out now…go to a new place to meet people--at a mosque or synagogue or a Hindu temple, whatever. America has many of each.

If you are Catholic, Protestant, Jewish, Muslim, Atheist or Martian, embrace the interfaith groups. They are the bridge builders we need to live together. That act alone will make this a better world.

Michael Fjetland, BBA/JD
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