11/18/20

Diplomat James Jeffrey Lied to Pres Trump about Syria

By: Denise Simon | Founders Code

JTN:

A former infantry officer in the U.S. Army, Ambassador Jeffrey served in Germany and Vietnam from 1969 to 1976.

>> Think of it << James Jeffrey—who is retiring from his posts as the Special Representative for Syria Engagement and Special Envoy to the Global Coalition to Defeat ISIS — reportedly said that “shell games” have been used to avoid telling U.S. leaders the true number of American troops in Syria. “We were always playing shell games to not make clear to our leadership how many troops we had there,” Jeffrey said, according to Defense One.

Jeffrey reportedly said that when President Donald Trump was interested in withdrawing from Syria, arguments against a withdrawal were presented to the commander in chief.

“What Syria withdrawal? There was never a Syria withdrawal,” Jeffrey told the outlet. “When the situation in northeast Syria had been fairly stable after we defeated ISIS, [Trump] was inclined to pull out. In each case, we then decided to come up with five better arguments for why we needed to stay. And we succeeded both times. That’s the story.”

The president last year officially agreed to maintain some troops in Syria, according to Defense One.

While Jeffrey in 2016 prior to the presidential election signed onto an anti-Trump letter with other individuals who had previously served under Republican administrations, Defense One noted that Jeffrey’s advice for the Biden administration is to persist in the course set by President Trump’s team.

Media outlets have projected Joe Biden to be the winner of the presidential contest, but Trump has not conceded.What you need to know about US military involvement in ...

For more context in part:

Under a “security mechanism” negotiated by Jeffrey’s team, the SDF had agreed to destroy its fortifications along the Turkish border and allow joint U.S.-Turkish patrols on its soil, in exchange for protection from a further Turkish attack.

“Those troops were not there to protect the Kurds from the Turks,” Jeffrey said, referring to U.S. troops that Trump moved away from the border after an October 6 phone call with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan. “The purpose of the president’s phone call was to dissuade [Erdoğan] from something in the days past we had become convinced was no longer a possibility but a probability.”

Jeffrey claimed that Turkey did not see U.S. forces as a deterrent. But when pressed, he confessed to Rep. Brad Sherman (D-CA) that Turkey would “absolutely not” kill American troops in Syria. He also tried to minimize his role in the decision-making process.

“I have never briefed the president,” Jeffrey said.

“Between the fourth and the sixth [of October], I had at least one conversation with [Secretary of State Mike] Pompeo,” he continued. “Secretary Pompeo has been consulted very, very frequently, almost daily by the president on Syria issues.”

“The SDF has long had relations with Russia and the Assad government,” Jeffrey claimed. “We also never told them that we couldn’t.” Read more here. 

But the U.S. government had reportedly blocked an agreement between the SDF and Bashar al-Assad prior to the withdrawal of U.S. troops from the region.

War Crimes Revealed

The National Interest reported yesterday that Jeffrey had slowed efforts by the State Department to condemn the murder of Syrian Kurdish politician Hevrin Khalaf by Turkish-backed paramilitaries.

For the first time in public, Jeffrey addressed accusations that Turkish forces had used white phosphorus, an incendiary chemical, on civilian areas. Lawmakers noted that they had received no notice from the Trump administration on the alleged use of chemical weapons.

“I haven’t heard anything about that [from the State Department] other than here,” Rep. Chrissy Houlahan (D–MD) pointed out.

So, Jeffrey changed the subject to alleged war crimes by Bashar al-Assad, the Iranian- and Russian-backed ruler of the Syrian central government.

***

The first U.S. troops arrived in Syria under the Obama administration in Oct. 2015 to push back ISIS. At its peak, ISIS-controlled territories across Iraq and Syria that were home to about 10 million people.

Fifty American advisers were initially sent to Syria. That number grew to more than 500, according to the Pentagon, before officials acknowledged there were approximately 2,000 U.S. troops in Syria.

The role of the U.S. troops has been to advise and assist the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) — a Kurdish-led force that now numbers more than 50,000 and is about 40 percent Arab. The U.S. is not involved in direct combat unless it is for self-defense.

11/15/20

Democrats Get Something Right – Investigating $300 Million Spent On Defective And Missing F-35 Parts

By: Terresa Monroe-Hamilton

The F-35 Lightning II is truly an amazing achievement in military aircraft design and next-general military capabilities. It is arguably the world’s most dominant multi-role fighter. Its detection range, geolocation, threat identification, and system response capabilities allow the jet to precisely zero in on and destroy the most advanced threats in the world. That includes Russia’s latest SA-20 surface-to-air missile (SAM) system. It is promoted as the greatest tactical fighter ever produced. But that title comes with a stunning price tag.

The cost for an F-35 is estimated to be more than $100 million per plane. Adding in development, operations, and maintenance costs, the F-35 fighter initiative is estimated to run well over $1 trillion during its lifetime. Part of that cost is also due to sophisticated hacking operations that have driven up the price tag. This estimate is tens of billions more than the previous projections and the price tag just keeps going ever higher. That does not include the $300 million for missing or defective parts over the last five years. This has raised eyebrows in Congress and surprisingly those looking into this poor use of taxpayer funding are Democrats. The Pentagon also wants answers.

U.S. Rep. Carolyn Maloney, the New York Democrat who chairs the House Committee on Oversight and Reform, has gotten wind of all this. She sent a letter to Lockheed Martin demanding thousands of documents related to the spare parts program.

“The military is spending tens of millions of dollars a year to overcome unresolved issues with the system Lockheed Martin built and maintains to track spare parts for the F-35,” the letter stated. “These problems must be resolved quickly as they create a significant administrative burden for military maintenance personnel.”

The other three lawmakers that signed the letter were Rep. Stephen F. Lynch (D-MA), chair of the Subcommittee on National Security; Rep. Jackie Speier (D-CA); and Rep. Ro Khanna (D-CA).

The letter purports that one military commander told a Congressional delegation that the spare part issues are “pervasive” and a “massive manpower suck.”

While our military deserves the very best in everything we can provide them, with the debt the U.S. is running in all quarters these days, no budget for any item should be open-ended. That’s why an audit of spending concerning the F-35, its parts, and its suppliers should be conducted. A lot of numbers here simply do not add up.

The Senate Appropriations Committee, headed by Republicans, is asking in-depth questions on the spending related to the initiative. Senators want answers regarding the DOD’s plan to spend $17.9 billion to further upgrade the three F-35 variants. Also at issue are questions of funding, parts from Turkey, buying F-35 materials in bulk, and how much money Lockheed is reimbursing the DOD for spare parts that could not be installed.

The cost of an F-35 has reduced 15.3% from previous price estimates through Lockheed Martin. However, their engines have only reduced in cost by 3%. Pratt and Whitney, the manufacturer of the engines, says there will be no further price reductions since Congress killed funding for the F-35 alternative engine contract in 2011, leaving them as a sole-source supplier with no incentive to reduce its profits. Congress and the Pentagon’s audit agency also want answers and solutions for this cost discrepancy.

The F-35 has also been plagued by technical problems, although they have been reportedly cut in half. They were decreased from 13 to seven over the past year. But those problems are costly as well not only dollar-wise but in manpower and combat readiness.

The Pentagon’s five-year budget plan for the F-35 falls short by as much as $10 billion. A number of experts now believe that the complex fighter jet may be too costly to operate and maintain. The Defense Department’s blueprint for the next five fiscal years calls for requesting $78 billion for research and development, jet procurement, operations and maintenance, and military construction dedicated to the F-35 built by Lockheed Martin Corp. But the cost analysis unit estimates $88 billion will be needed.

The Democrats are also not pleased that the Trump administration has formally informed the United States Congress of its intention to sell dozens of F-35 advanced fighter jets and other military hardware to the United Arab Emirates. Israel has signed off on the deal as well. So, while the cost of producing the aircraft is monstrous and ongoing, it would seem that the U.S. will recoup at least some of that spending. The question is whether it is wise to sell military aircraft to the UAE or not. They are ostensibly an ally, but things are very fluid in the Middle East. Nurturing allies over there is in our best interests, however.

The F-35’s spending is clearly a boondoggle that needs further investigation, foresight, and consideration — and all options must be on the table to protect taxpayer funding. But Democrats shouldn’t pretend, as they often do, that even the worst military spending is responsible for our massive deficits in the last two decades. That honor belongs to social spending.

While Democrats seem to believe that military spending is the U.S.’ major debt contributor these days, that simply is not the case. Their reasoning is purely political and not based on factual data. Social Security and Medicare are the real villains in our debt saga.

Our military budget is very large and in many instances managed poorly and handled inefficiently. War-related increases in defense spending have been a significant factor in America’s increasing deficits since the turn of the century.

But it should be noted that the Department of Defense’s budget is shrinking as a percentage of the federal budget. It is currently 14 percent of the budget. That is smaller than expenditures for Social Security and the federal healthcare system. Both of those social endeavors will take up larger portions of the federal budget.

Regardless of our military budget, the spending on the F-35 needs to be looked into. We should have the best military equipment in the world but we should also adhere to Trump’s “Art of the Deal” and not just throw money away without questioning where it is going, what it is being used for, and can a better deal be had.

11/6/20

When Institutions Fail, Consequences are Deadly

By: Denise Simon | Founders Code

We know this to be the case in the United States as a result of sanctuary city policy. Politicians have sovereign immunity, meaning they are not accountable for their policy or legislative action when there are victims including death.

Intelligence agencies in the United States cooperate with each other with intelligence and detentions except when they don’t in hundreds of cities across America. U.S. intelligence agencies also collaborate with foreign services on warnings and cases of criminals and the associated backgrounds including judicial decisions.

While the United States was in the whirlwind of the election, very little was reporting was done on the terror attacks in Europe. Terror and militants are still out there, the war is not over. But for some additional details, read on.

AUSTRIAN GOVERNMENT OFFICIALS SIGNALED on Thursday the beginning of a major overhaul of the country’s intelligence community, in response to this week’s terrorist attack in Vienna, which killed four people. Another 20 people were wounded by a lone gunman, who used an automatic weapon to spread panic in the Austrian capital before he was shot dead by Austrian police.

The gunman was named as Kujtim Fejzulai, 20, an Isis sympathiser who was able to stay on in Austria after attempts to strip him of citizenship were blocked

Armed with an assault rifle, a pistol and a machete, he injured 22 people on Monday night before being shot dead by police. He was named as Kujtim Fejzulai, 20, who had previously been jailed for attempting to join Islamic State in Syria.

Before his early release in December he had taken part in a deradicalisation course but “deceived” his handlers about his true intentions, Karl Nehammer, the interior minister, said.

The gunman was later identified as Kujtim Fejzulai, an Austrian citizen of Albanian extraction, who was born in North Macedonia and held citizenship there too. The shooter was known to Austrian authorities, as he had been previously convicted of trying to travel to Syria to join the Islamic State. He had been imprisoned as an Islamic radical, but had been released after allegedly duping Austrian judges, who believed he had reformed.

In the days following the attack, it emerged that Slovakian authorities had notified Austrian security agencies in July that Fejzulai had tried to purchase ammunition in Slovakia. On Wednesday, Austria’s Director General for Public Security, Franz Ruf, said that Austrian intelligence authorities “sent questions back to Bratislava”, but then there had been a “breakdown” in the system. Austrian Minister of the Interior Karl Nehammer added that “something apparently went wrong with the communication in the next steps”.

Nehammer and others, including Austrian Vice Chancellor Werner Kogler, called for the establishment of an independent commission to examine the Fejzulai case and “clarify whether the process went optimally and in line with the law”. The Austrian Chancellor, Sebastian Kurz, said on Thursday that the country did not have “all the legal means necessary to monitor and sanction extremists”, adding that he would initiate the creation of a panel that would supervise a “realignment” of the intelligence agencies. He was referring to the Office for the Protection of the Constitution and Counterterrorism, known by the initials BVT. He did not provide details.

11/6/20

Remember Churchill’s Words to “Never Surrender”

By: Cliff Kincaid

Ben Shapiro is a good talker who can win arguments with left-wingers. But his column, headlined, “No Matter the Outcome, the Woke Lost,” is self-defeating. Operating on the basis of the phrase, “When life gives you lemons, make lemonade,” he seems to think Trump may have lost but the left lost, too. So we’re all losers? That’s not a good approach as we move forward.

The fact is that Joe Biden lost and President Trump won. That’s what Trump is saying, with evidence, and I believe him.

If Shapiro disagrees, let him prove that Biden won legitimately. Trump has cited the evidence of fraud that we saw with our own eyes, as ballot dumps turned Wisconsin and Michigan against Trump. Other states are falling to Biden under equally mysterious circumstances. What more evidence do we need?

As Biden might say, “Come on, man.”

His bio says that Ben lives with his wife and three children in Los Angeles. As a result, I have to question his common sense. Get out of California, Ben. You are living in occupied territory. We are fighting to keep the rest of America free.

Ben has his place, but he was never pro-Trump. By contrast, Alex Newman is a great young journalist who was sympathetic to Trump and has now published a piece, “Massive Vote Fraud Across U.S. as Trump Decries Attempted Coup.”

The evidence cited in this column is what Ben Shapiro and his sponsors at CNSNews.com should be focusing on.

Please, CNSNews.com editor Terrence Jeffrey, stop wasting our time with limp-wristed commentary from never-Trumpers during this critical period of time. This is the time to assume that the media-declared Biden “win” is a fraud and that Trump, who is claiming victory, has been re-elected.

As another Democrat, Bill Clinton might say, that’s our story, and we’re sticking to it. In this case, however, our side of the story is buttressed by the evidence.  It’s important to operate on the assumption that Trump, as he claims, has been re-elected.

Anybody who depends on the “official” tally, which comes from those opposed to Trump, is a fool or agent of the opposition.

What we have to guard against is the unfortunate tendency of some “conservatives” to sell out, in order to curry favor with their would-be rulers.

Here’s how Alex Newman begins his column: “Reports, videos, and other evidence of rampant and brazen voter fraud from all across the country — especially in jurisdictions controlled by Democrats — continue pouring in faster than the Big Tech giants can censor it and the fake ‘fact-checking’ industry can dishonestly attempt to discredit it.”

Alex is exactly right, and I suggest reading the rest of his article here. Alex is also an expert on the Deep State and the New World Order. He contributed to one of my books exposing Barack Hussein Obama.

We are in a constitutional crisis and the election scandal is part of it.

But even this fraud cannot be viewed in isolation, as it comes after various attempts to take down this president. Vote fraud follows the fake news Russia dossier and the impeachment drive.

We know the FBI and FBI used Russian disinformation against Trump. What’s more, impeachment was designed to accuse Trump of the corruption that Biden and his son were engaged in. We know all of this. So why do we think that the Democrats would conduct an election fairly and honestly?

So please, Ben, don’t question the “outcome.” We already know who won. Don’t be a doubting Ben.

Ben is a young man, and my three sons are young, too. That’s why they have to understand what is really happening here. It is unprecedented. The corruption is more deadly than the China virus.

One of my readers said to me, “I am 72 years of age. Until the last few years, I would never have believed what I’m seeing take place in the country could take place/happen. The road we are on is a bad one indeed, and I’m glad I don’t have many years left to see what appears to be an eventual fall of the nation.”

This is really sad. I don’t agree that the nation is destined to fall.

“People are never going to give up on this country,” Rush Limbaugh just said on his radio show today. Here’s a man facing death’s door. But he has faith in God and America. We pray for his health and the health of our country.

He’s exposing the vote fraud apparatus. He’s not giving up. He’s trying to inspire conservatives to take the fight to the opposition.

Trump has a very good lawyer in his corner, the former U.S. Attorney and New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani. He brought down New York’s Mafia families. He exposed the Hunter Biden laptop and is now out front on the fraud issue.

By contrast, Biden is a weak man, apparently controlled by Obama’s handlers hoping to replace him with Kamala Harris – if they get into the White House.

Standing in their way is President Trump.

As Archbishop Carlo Maria Vigano Archbishop says, Americans should not lose heart. He tells us, “Do not allow yourselves to be discouraged by the deceptions of the Enemy, even more so in this terrible hour in which the impudence of lying and fraud dares to challenge Heaven.” His messages are read and sometimes Tweeted by Trump.

But perhaps these spiritual messages will now be censored by Twitter as well.

Facing the Nazis,  British Prime Minister Winston Churchill said “we shall never surrender, and even if, which I do not for a moment believe, this Island or a large part of it were subjugated and starving, then our Empire beyond the seas, armed and guarded by the British Fleet, would carry on the struggle, until, in God’s good time, the New World, with all its power and might, steps forth to the rescue and the liberation of the old.”

Trump is Churchill in the current struggle. God is on our side. But beyond faith, we have to fight for national and personal survival. Our lives are in danger. It’s that serious.

In order to prepare for the worst, I suggest reading the booklet, “Insurrection and Violence: A Citizen’s Guide,” published by the firm Unconstrained Analytics before the election fraud became so obvious in the last several days.

As Trump moves ahead to save his presidency, we have to understand how the street protests will probably accelerate. The authors warn, “The consequence of citizen inaction, at this perilous moment, is to put at risk the Constitution, our way of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.”

The bio for one of the firm’s top officers, Rich Higgins, notes that he “served on the National Security Council in the Trump Administration as the Director for Strategic Planning. He was removed in 2017 after warning of a deep state coup to remove the President.”

You can now be sure that Trump is taking these warnings seriously and understands the nature of the crisis.

*For updates, please use the contact form at www.usasurvival.org

11/6/20

China’s Interference in U.S. is Rampant, and Extraordinarily Dangerous

A virtual special event hosted by the Citizens Commission on National Security

With new evidence pouring out by the day that presidential candidate Joe Biden was deeply involved in pay-to-play schemes with China, among other malign actors, with his son Hunter as the alleged bag man, it should come as no surprise that China has penetrated other Americans institutions and movements, including the Black Lives Matter movement and organization.

With China’s emergence as a major story affecting the election and the current unrest in this country, the newest Virtual Special Event

by the Citizens Commission on National Security, titled “Civil Unrest in America: Black Lives Matter, Antifa and Beyond,” has brought together two leading experts on communism, terrorism, and the Left, and what role they have played regarding in the civil unrest we have witnessed this year.

Clare Lopez is a 20-year veteran of the CIA, and a member of the Citizens Commission on National Security. In this video, she talks about the Red/Green/Black axis:

“We thought that using the colors would be an easy way to remember what we’re faced with. So the red stands for communist Marxist Leninist and yes, pro Maoist as well. And the green is Islam and the Islamic Movement writ large. That’s what they call themselves. That’s their term for the movement that is global. The Islamic Movement in the United States, the vanguard of that is the Muslim Brotherhood, which is closely affiliated with the Black Lives Matter movement…And the green has openly joined forces with these Communist revolutionary forces on our street. And then finally, of course, the Black Lives Matter movement and that is a whole umbrella group, a conglomeration of affiliated associated groups. They are absolutely communist. They were founded by three African American self-avowed communists, Marxist Alicia Garza and Patrisse Cullors, all of whom come out of, as Trevor has taught all of us, predecessor organizations like Freedom Road Socialist Organization and Liberation Road, which themselves are self-avowedly communist and Marxist.

“But the additional connection for the Black Lives Matter movement today, which I think is very important to note, is that while the ideological roots, as with Antifa, are with Moscow and communism coming out of the Soviet Union, today, the leading communist entity, the most important, I think, entity, backer or supporter of this revolution in America right now is the Communist Party of China.”

The other guest expert is Trevor Loudon, a filmmaker, author and researcher who has made these topics his life’s work. According to Trevor:

“We are just on the verge of another 1968. It’s going to be way, way bigger. And that’s where we are now, because we have allowed the kids to be indoctrinated into Marxist ideas, not explicitly thinking of themselves as Marxists. But kids who believe Black Lives Matter is a good organization, people who believe that America is a rapacious country that got rich by ripping off the Third World. The founding fathers were horrible exploitative slave owners and nothing else. All of these are Marxist ideas.”

The event is hosted by CCNS executive director Roger Aronoff and the host of “The 13-Minute NewsHour on YouTube, Bobby Eberle. It is a fascinating, and frightening discussion, full of critical information that will help explain the current civil unrest in America, and where it might be headed.

10/26/20

No Strategic Break Between the Taliban and al Qaeda

By: Denise Simon | Founders Code

Beginning with the trade during the Obama administration of Bowe Bergdahl for 5 Taliban commanders from Gitmo, the United States is still in peace negotiations with the Taliban and a peace framework has been signed and violated several times of no consequence.

However, there is news to report with confirmation.

The United States has confirmed that Husam Abd-al-Ra’uf, a senior al Qaeda leader also known as Abu Muhsin al-Masri, was killed by Afghan forces during a raid in Ghazni province earlier this month.

Chris Miller, the head of the National Counterterrorism Center, described Abd-al-Ra’uf’s “removal…from the battlefield” as “a major setback to a terrorist organization that is consistently experiencing strategic losses facilitated by the United States and its partners,” according to Reuters. Miller touted the raid further, saying it “highlights the diminishing effectiveness of the terrorist organization.”

However, Miller implied just last month that characters such as Abd-al-Ra’uf were either unimportant or didn’t even exist. In an op-ed published by the Washington Post on Sept. 10, Miller claimed that Ayman al Zawahiri was al Qaeda’s “sole remaining ideological leader.” As FDD’s Long War Journal pointed out, that isn’t true. Zawahiri’s role was never purely ideological, and he isn’t the sole remaining al Qaeda leader, ideological or otherwise. A number of al Qaeda veterans remain active in the network’s hierarchy, including, until recently, Abd-al-Ra’uf.

Abd-al-Ra’uf’s demise is undoubtedly significant. He was a veteran jihadist, whose career began in the 1980s. He was a trusted subordinate for Zawahiri and served al Qaeda in senior roles, including in its propaganda arm, As Sahab. But it is debatable whether his death, as well as other setbacks, add up to “strategic losses” for al Qaeda in Afghanistan or elsewhere, as Miller claims. It is likely that Abd-al-Ra’uf trained and oversaw many other al Qaeda men throughout his lengthy career. And the U.S. has been unable to produce consistent, reliable estimates of al Qaeda’s strength inside Afghanistan.

Al Qaeda fights for the Taliban in Ghazni and elsewhere

There has been no strategic break between the Taliban and al Qaeda. Abd-al-Ra’uf was reportedly killed in the village of Kunsaf, which is controlled by the Taliban. If the Taliban’s men did not betray the Egyptians, and there is no evidence that they did, then yet again a senior al Qaeda leader was found in Taliban country. This is an apparent violation of the Feb. 29 withdrawal agreement between the U.S. State Department and the Taliban. The State Department has repeatedly vouched for the Taliban’s supposed counterterrorism assurances, including that al Qaeda wouldn’t be allowed to operate on Afghan soil. But nearly eight months after that deal was signed, Abd-al-Ra’uf was located in a Taliban-controlled area.

Al Qaeda has a long-established presence in Ghazni. FDD’s Long War Journal can trace al Qaeda operations in Ghazni back to 2008.

Aafia Siddiqui, dubbed “Lady al Qaeda” in the press, was among the al Qaeda figures captured or killed during raids in Ghazni in 2008. There have been multiple operations targeting al Qaeda in Ghazni since then.

Al Qaeda’s role in the fighting in Ghazni is referenced in the files recovered in Osama bin Laden’s compound. In a June 19, 2010 memo to bin Laden, Atiyah Abd al Rahman wrote that al Qaeda had “very strong military activity in Afghanistan.” Rahman, who served as bin Laden’s key lieutenant, listed Ghazni was one of eight provinces in which al Qaeda “groups” had been “the same for every season for many years now.” Rahman was killed in a drone strike the following year.

In subsequent letters that were also written in 2010, bin Laden ordered his operatives in northern Pakistan to relocate into Afghanistan. Ghazni was one of several provinces that the al Qaeda founder considered hospitable for his men. Operational evidence confirms that al Qaeda was still operating in Ghazni years later.

In Feb. 2017, Afghan troops killed Qari Saifullah Akhtar, a senior al Qaeda leader who also doubled as the emir for Harakat-ul-Jihad-al-Islami (HUJI), a Pakistan-based terror group. Later that year, in Dec. 2017, the U.S. killed Omar Khetab (a.k.a. Omar Mansour), the “second senior leader” in AQIS, al Qaeda’s regional branch. In Mar. of 2019, the Afghan military claimed it killed 31 AQIS fighters in the district of Giro. In Sept. 2019, Afghan forces raided a warehouse that Al Qaeda in the Indian Subcontinent (AQIS) used to house explosives for operations jointly conducted with the Taliban.

Should al Qaeda help the Taliban recapture much of Afghanistan after America’s planned withdrawal from Afghanistan in the spring of 2021, and there is no real break between the two, then that could be considered a strategic victory for the group.

Thomas Joscelyn is a Senior Fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies and the Senior Editor for FDD’s Long War Journal.

10/26/20

China to Sanction U.S. Defense Contractors Over Taiwan

By: Denise Simon | Founders Code

The One China Policy supported by previous administrations has been earnestly challenged by the Trump administration and rightly so. China has forcefully held dominion over Taiwan, an independent nation, and since the Trump administration has approved arms sales to Taiwan, the tensions have increased substantially.

Context:

Jamestown: Events throughout 2020 have seen a measured but steady increase in tensions surrounding Taiwan. The government of the People’s Republic of China (PRC) continues to deny any legitimacy to the democratically-elected government of the Republic of China (ROC) in Taiwan. The PRC also continues to make menacing insistence upon unification on Beijing’s terms, in language that has grown more strident throughout the tenure of Chinese Communist Party (CCP) General Secretary Xi Jinping (China Brief, February 15, 2019; China Brief, November 1, 2019).

Against this background, the PRC has reacted with both harsh rhetoric and saber-rattling to enhanced U.S.-Taiwan diplomatic contacts in August and September, as well as a reported further round of impending U.S.-Taiwan arms sales (see discussion further below). One PRC English-language outlet opined in late September that “The U.S. has been releasing all kinds of supportive signals to Taiwan this year, with the level and frequency of their so-called interactions flagrantly enhanced… While [some in Taiwan] jump at such signals, they’d better think long and hard whether the signals are sweet poisons from the U.S. for Taiwan” (PLA Daily, September 25).

U.S. Diplomatic Visits to Taiwan

Recent years have seen a noteworthy increase in official and semi-official U.S.-Taiwan diplomatic exchanges. In March 2018 the Taiwan Travel Act (TTA) was signed into U.S. law, providing a statement of support for increased travel by high-level Taiwan officials to the United States. This was followed by unofficial “transit stop” visits in the United States by ROC President Tsai Ying-Wen (蔡英文) in 2018 and 2019, and a May 2019 meeting between U.S. National Security Advisor John Bolton and his ROC counterpart David Lee (李大維) (China Brief, July 31, 2019). In early February this year, ROC Vice President-elect Lai Ching-te (賴清德) traveled to the United States, where he met with senior U.S. political figures and attended the annual National Prayer Breakfast in Washington D.C. (Taiwan News, February 4). Although Lai had not yet assumed office at the time and therefore visited in an unofficial role, the trip produced harsh condemnations in the PRC state press (Xinhua, February 6). All of these visits by Taiwan officials have drawn similarly negative reactions from the PRC Foreign Ministry and state media, as with the “stern representations” presented over President Tsai’s stop in Hawaii in March 2019 (Xinhua, March 21, 2019).

These visits were reciprocated in summer and autumn this year by two visits made by U.S. officials to Taiwan. U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services Alex Azar conducted a visit to Taiwan from August 9-12, described by his department as “the highest-level visit by a U.S. Cabinet official since 1979,” and “part of America’s policy of sending high-level U.S. officials to Taiwan to reaffirm the U.S.-Taiwan friendship” (HHS, August 4). Secretary Azar’s activities included a meeting with President Tsai; a visit to Taiwan’s Central Epidemic Command Center; and a speech at National Taiwan University (HHS, August 10; August 11; August 12). This trip was followed in mid-September by a visit from the U.S. Under Secretary of State for Economic Growth, Energy, and the Environment Keith Krach, who traveled to Taiwan to attend a memorial service for former ROC President Lee Teng-hui (U.S. State Department, September 16).

Pentagon Approves $500 Million Taiwan F-16 Support Program ...

Bloomberg:

China will impose unspecified sanctions on the defense unit of Boeing Co., Lockheed Martin Corp., and Raytheon Technologies Corp. after the U.S. approved $1.8 billion in arms sales to Taiwan last week.

The sanctions will be imposed “in order to uphold national interests,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian told reporters Monday in Beijing. “Boeing Defense” would be among those sanctioned, he said.

The State Department last week approved $1.8 billion in new weapons for Taiwan and submitted the package to Congress for a final review. The submission comes two months after the U.S. and Taiwan completed the sale of 66 new model F-16 Block 70 aircraft from Lockheed, and as tensions between the two superpowers continue to escalate ahead of the American election.

Boeing Defense is one of the broader company’s three business units, according to its website. Shares in Boeing, down almost 50% this year, dropped as much as 2.2% in U.S. pre-market trading.

A spokesperson for Boeing emphasized the firm’s relationship with China in the aviation space. Boeing has “worked together successfully with the aviation community in China for almost 50 years to support Chinese efforts to ensure a safe, efficient and profitable aviation system to keep pace with the country’s rapid economic growth.”

“It’s been a partnership with long-term benefits and one that Boeing remains committed to,” the spokesperson said in the emailed statement.

One China Principle

Representatives from Raytheon weren’t immediately available for comment outside of normal U.S. business hours.

Zhao condemned Lockheed’s F-16 Block 70 sale at the time, saying it violates the One China principle, interferes in China’s internal affairs and will have a “major impact” on U.S.-China relations. Taiwan’s presidential office thanked the U.S for the sale. In July, China — which considers Taiwan part of its territory and resists any recognition of its de facto independence — had announced sanctions on Lockheed Martin for a previous arms sale to the island.

U.S. arms manufacturers face strict limitations on what kind of business they can do with countries deemed by Washington to be strategic rivals, such as China. Lockheed generated 9.7% of its revenue in the Asia-Pacific region last year, according to data compiled by Bloomberg, though that’s not broken down by individual countries.

China has previously threatened to sanction U.S. companies, including General Dynamics Corp. and Honeywell International Inc., on numerous occasions over arms sales to Taiwan. It also warned it could blacklist FedEx Corp., while Ford Motor Co.’s main joint venture partner in China was fined 162.8 million yuan ($24.3 million) last year, days after the U.S. put a ban on doing business with Huawei Technologies Co.

While China has often invoked the threat of putting U.S. companies on a blacklist — or list of “unreliable entities” — in response to various actions by U.S. President Donald Trump’s administration over the past year, it has yet to name any, at least publicly.

Delicate Time

For Boeing, China’s action comes at a delicate time. The company, reeling from the hit to air travel from the coronavirus pandemic, is trying to get its besieged 737 Max plane back into the air after two fatal crashes saw it grounded around the world. China was the first place to ground the plane, and also has the world’s biggest 737 Max fleet.

Europe’s top aviation regulator said earlier this month the plane will be safe enough to fly again before the end of this year, while U.S. Federal Aviation Administration chief Steve Dickson flew the Max in September and said the controls were “very comfortable.” More detail here.

10/24/20

Operation Warp Speed Status Report Courtesy of the Military

By: Denise Simon | Founders Code

Below is a compilation of initiatives, actions, and accomplishments across Operation Warp Speed (OWS)’s primary efforts in the past week. To learn more about OWS, visit the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) website and the Department of Defense (DOD) website.

Pfizer, Merck, and Moderna among finalists for Operation…

VACCINE DEVELOPMENT:

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration today authorized the restart of AstraZeneca’s Phase 3 clinical trial in the U.S. As part of the standard review process for adverse events in clinical trials, a voluntary pause was triggered to allow for the examination of safety data by independent monitoring committees. This pause while the adverse event was fully investigated means the science-based, data-driven process continues to work as it should.

Moderna announced it completed enrollment on its Phase 3 clinical trial, noting 37 percent of the 30,000 participants are part of minority populations. To date, more than 25,650 participants of Moderna’s participants have received their second vaccination. According to Moderna’s announcement, the company’s decision to submit a dossier to FDA requesting Emergency Use Authorization will be based on an assessment of whether the potential benefit of the vaccine outweighs the potential risks. The science and data behind this assessment is accruing.

The FDA’s Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee met Thursday to discuss the ongoing development of a COVID-19 vaccine. In the interest of transparency over the process, the FDA streamed the entire committee meeting on both its own website and on YouTube. The all-day meeting explored the potential of granting Emergency Use Authorization and the standards and criteria that will be applied to vaccine candidates.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention launched a new page on their website dedicated to education on the COVID-19 vaccine planning efforts: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/vaccines/index.html.

In its commitment to transparency, Operation Warp Speed has posted four redacted contracts here: https://www.hhs.gov/foia/electronic-reading-room/index.html

THERAPEUTICS DEVELOPMENT:

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved the antiviral drug Veklury (remdesivir) on Oct. 22 for use in adult and pediatric patients 12 years of age and older and weighing at least 40 kilograms (about 88 pounds) for the treatment of COVID-19 requiring hospitalization.

MANUFACTURING, DISTRIBUTION, AND ADMINISTRATION:

Operation Warp Speed is working with the U.S. Marshals Service as part of a “whole of government” approach to ensure the security of the vaccine supply chain, including delivery to administration points. Marshals Service liaisons are embedded with the OWS team to ensure there is consistent communication and information flow in the security sector.

Synchronizing and integrating data across distribution and administration operations is a critical effort of Operation Warp Speed. To that end, OWS is using a specially designed platform to collect, correlate, and visualize data across the entire operation. The “Tiberius” platform integrates the related manufacturing, supply chain, allocation, state and territory planning, delivery, and administration of both vaccine products and ancillary kits. The 2020 technology provides visibility across all U.S. jurisdictions to provide decision support and ease the burden of public health officials throughout the nation. Additionally this week, HHS in support of Operation Warp Speed began signing Memorandums of Understandings with jurisdictions to provide access to information technology (IT) support to assist them with vaccine response planning and distribution at no cost.
An OpEd by HHS Secretary Alex Azar titled “Why Operation Warp Speed is a Made-in-America story,” highlighted the scaling up of manufacturing facilities across the country. He discussed DOD’s success in applying a military supply chain and logistics mentality to develop and deliver a COVID-19 vaccine to the American people.

KEY ENGAGEMENTS:

HHS Secretary Alex Azar visited Emory University Hospital in Atlanta and saw their work on clinical trials for Regeneron’s antibody cocktail and Moderna’s candidate vaccine.

Operation Warp Speed Chief Science Advisor Dr. Moncef Slaoui visited a Moderna clinical trial site at George Washington University Wednesday and spoke with ABC’s Bob Woodruff.

HHS Deputy Secretary Hargan visited the University of Kansas Medical Center for a meeting with their leadership and physicians about the Phase 3 clinical trials they have been overseeing for the AstraZeneca Vaccine. Deputy Secretary Hargan will also join Nebraska Governor Pete Ricketts on Saturday, October 24 for a tour of the University of Nebraska Medical Center where they are conducting clinical trials for COVAXX vaccine and therapeutic candidates.

Dr. Anthony Fauci joined a Univision Town Hall entitled “COVID-19 Vaccines: Myths and Facts” to discuss the importance of Hispanics being represented in clinical trials.

The Washington Post: “Unprecedented vaccine trials on track to begin delivering results.”

Operation Warp Speed Chief Operating Officer Gen. Gus Perna and Vaccine Development Lead Dr. Matt Hepburn will participate in a discussion with The Heritage Foundation on “The Fight to get a COVID-19 Vaccine” Oct. 27 at 3 p.m. The virtual event is free and open for registration.

SENIOR LEADER QUOTES:

“Clinical trial volunteers are the real heroes of this pandemic. Many people are looking for a way to make an impact and serve. Volunteering is a tremendous opportunity to be helpful.” ~Dr. Matt Hepburn, OWS Vaccine Development Lead

“Advances in science are the foundation for the unprecedented progress we are seeing under Operation Warp Speed. But the broader set of requirements for ultimate success—unwavering leadership, ingenuity, determination, the commitment of enormous resources, exceptional logistical infrastructure, and public-private collaboration—can be assembled only in America.” ~HHS Secretary Alex Azar

“It’s not a certainty, but the plan – and I feel pretty confident – should make it such that by June, everybody could have been immunized in the U.S.” ~Dr. Moncef Slaoui, OWS Chief Advisor

“Trust in the science. We have executed vaccine development with rigor. The leading scientists in the world and the quality of the nation’s pharmaceutical base, with oversight of the FDA’s gold standard, lend credibility to this unprecedented effort.” ~Paul Ostrowski, OWS Director for Supply, Production, and Distribution

Operation Warp Speed is a partnership among components of the Department of Health and Human Services and the Department of Defense, engaging with private firms and other federal agencies, and coordinating among existing HHS-wide efforts to accelerate the development, manufacturing, and distribution of COVID-19 vaccines, therapeutics, and diagnostics.

10/8/20

Don’t Tell Me the COVID-19 Virus Could Not Have Been Manufactured by China

By: Col. Lawrence Sellin (Ret.) | CCNS

Already by 2008, scientists were synthesizing in the laboratory viable and infectious artificial COVID-19-like viruses.

So far, the global scientific community has been unable to identify a natural origin of, or a logical evolutionary pathway for, the COVID-19 virus.

In contrast, the entire history of coronavirus research is punctuated by the ubiquitous use of genetic engineering to produce new viral combinations, which makes a laboratory origin a far more likely scenario.

In 2008, just five years after the first 2002-2003 severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) pandemic, Dr. Ralph Baric of the University of North Carolina published an article entitled “Synthetic recombinant bat SARS-like coronavirus is infectious in cultured cells and in mice,” in which he described the creation in the laboratory of an entirely new virus capable of producing a human SARS-like infection:

“Here, we report the design, synthesis, and recovery of the largest synthetic replicating life form, a 29.7-kb bat severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS)-like coronavirus (Bat-SCoV), a likely progenitor to the SARS-CoV epidemic.”

In that study, Baric demonstrated that his new synthetic virus was capable of infecting human lung cells to a similar extent as the first human SARS pandemic virus because he had genetically spliced the receptor-binding domain (RBD) from the SARS virus onto his new artificial virus.

It is important to note that Dr. Baric has been a long-time research collaborator with Zheng-Li Shi, the “bat woman” from the Wuhan Institute of Virology.

Similar to the 2008 study described above, Baric and Zheng-Li Shi jointly published a 2015 scientific article describing the insertion of the RBD from a newly isolated coronavirus (SHC014) into SARS-CoV-1, the coronavirus responsible for the 2002-2003 pandemic.

Baric and Zheng-Li Shi combined the components of two coronaviruses and produced another novel virus, SHC014-MA15, which showed “robust viral replication both in vitro [cell cultures] and in vivo [animals],” using models adapted to test for human infectivity.

Other genetic engineering techniques, such as the insertion of a furin polybasic basic cleavage site, which is found in the COVID-19 virus and in no other close natural relative, as well as individual artificial “point” mutations, have been widely used in coronavirus research.

Since the initial 2002-2003 SARS pandemic, which also originated in China, there have been attempts to create a broad-spectrum vaccine that would provide long-lasting protection against a variety of coronaviruses that might emerge from nature and infect humans.

One such approach has been the development of live-attenuated vaccines like those used for the childhood diseases measles, mumps, rubella, and chickenpox, in which a weakened or “attenuated” form of the virus that causes the disease is manufactured.

Because live-attenuated vaccines are so similar to the natural infection that they help prevent, a strong and long-lasting, even life-time immune response can be produced.

In a 2018 scientific article, Dr. Baric offered a strategy for the development of a broad-spectrum, live-attenuated vaccine for coronaviruses.

Baric also identified the inherent danger of live-attenuated virus vaccines that they have been shown to revert back to their original pathogenic structure after administration to a recipient.

That risk is exponentially increased for “self-spreading” vaccines, which are essentially genetically engineered live-attenuated vaccines designed to move through populations in the same way as viruses, but rather than causing disease, conferring protection.

In my two previous articles, here and here, I cited evidence supporting the argument that the COVID-19 virus originated in connection with China’s vaccine development program, in which a live-attenuated virus may have reverted to its deadly form after a human infection and then leaked from laboratory containment.

Given the mounting evidence, a non-natural origin for the COVID-19 pandemic demands investigation.

This column was originally published at WION.

Lawrence Sellin, Ph.D. is retired from an international career in business and medical research with 29 years of service in the US Army Reserve and a veteran of Afghanistan and Iraq. He is a member of the Citizens Commission on National Security. His email address is [email protected].

09/24/20

What Has Happened to our Senior Military Officers?

By: Retired General Paul Vallely | CCNS

The anti-Trump political moves by disloyal left-wing (Democrats) retired Generals and Admirals are wrong and should not be tolerated. These are the same senior officers that could not win a war. America lost so many of its proud soldiers, sailors, and airman and thousands wounded because of their flawed war-fighting strategies and policies (all documented). They have destroyed their reputation and credibility among the ranks and the Constitutional Patriots of America.

It became clear to many of us that the Obama administration (with some help from Bill Clinton’s presidency) had seeded the Pentagon with leftist generals whose allegiance was to the Deep State, to cultural leftism, and to the infamous and profitable “military-industrial complex” that Eisenhower warned about in 1961. In only five years, Obama had conducted a major Pentagon purge, firing almost 200 senior officers who held the old-fashioned belief that the military exists to protect America and should not be a social justice institution with limited firepower.

The upper-level officers who remained were hardcore Democrats. Several were assigned to our Military academies at US Military Academy at West Point, The Naval and Air Force Academies. bringing their liberal, left-wing philosophies with them. All the above says there is something rotten happening in the Pentagon. The implications are not just in the past. They are also in the future. Michael Anton has written the best article spelling out the fact that the Democrats are openly planning a coup if Biden doesn’t win. One of the crucial points about this planned coup is that the Democrats have been explicit about military involvement.

The statement “using the military to fight Americans” was clearly misstated and misinterpreted by a few of these senior officers, especially General Milley, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Cities, businesses, private property, and innocent civilians were being attacked and citizens being maimed and murdered by Antifa forces and other insurrectionists. The Governors and Mayors backed down as well as senior police chiefs and were not enforcing the laws. Cowards and lambs to say the least! The President simply said to America that if the Governors and Mayors could not control the insurrections, he would take action to Federalize the National Guard and insert Active Duty Forces to quell and neutralize the insurrections and criminals. By the way, the President of the United States has all the right and duty to protect the American people.

Consider the options the President had to assist the Governors and Mayors and local police. What would you do if you were in his position? Stand by, do nothing, or plan and execute viable solutions to neutralize the insurrectionists? If the local police and sheriffs could not control the situation, the President’s duty would be to provide Active, Reserve, and Federalized National Guard units/troops to assist State and Local Police. Believe me, the outcomes would be different, and the insurrections of 2020 would be neutralized.

Some charged that The Constitution was under threat from the President. Another General stated Trump was a threat to National Security when in fact, the President was trying to enforce National Security. Even weak and RINO Republicans jumped on the bandwagon to attack the President. One said, “our Republic is under attack from the President” and that President Trump was working to destroy the nation.” Fabrication and deception by the media and Socialists were prevalent, thus, adding confusion among the American people. Do not believe for a moment that our international enemies were not looking on and would take advantage of a weakening America. And why would General Milley need to apologize for accompanying POTUS to a Church that was set on fire by rioters in walking-distance from the White House?

The press would blather about racial injustice when it was the rioters and insurrectionists who set the fires and destroyed millions of dollars of personal and government properties. The President and his national security team were tasked with the mission to develop solutions to the crisis. They call it “crisis planning and management.”

“Enough is enough” America! The Deep State is still filled with anti-Trump political appointees, senior Generals and Admirals, and staffers, who need to be removed from the ranks. Patriotic Americans know in their hearts what is needed to keep the Republic from crumbling. We have a President now who fights for them and this great country and will not permit anarchists and Socialists to destroy what our forefathers created.

We recommend that the President convene a meeting immediately at the Pentagon to be attended by the senior Defense leaders, Secretaries, and four-star Generals and Admirals. The President can then determine and sound out their concerns. He can, then, determine their loyalty and commitment to the Trump team. Those that cannot commit to the President should be asked to submit their resignations by close of business. Selected Retired Generals and Admirals who are apart of a Trump coup should be called back to Active Duty and tried by Court Martial.

The laughable Atlantic article about Trump disrespecting the military was intended not just to get military votes on November 3, but to get military coup participants after November 3. Critical Race Theory training and eight years of Obama’s social justice policies appear to have shifted many of the enlisted ranks from strong conservatives to equally strong Democrats.#

Gen. Paul Vallely is a member of the Citizens Commission on National Security

Released by the Stand Up America US Foundation.

Contact: [email protected]

Website: standupamericaus.org