09/29/17

US Shuttering Diplomatic and Tourism Operations in Cuba

By: Denise Simon | Founders Code

Twenty-one U.S. diplomatic personnel assigned to Cuba have been severely affected by some health condition with the cause still unknown officially. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has issued travel warnings to Cuba for civilians and has ordered a large number of government personnel to leave the island. Cuba is allegedly cooperating in the investigation and for more than a year, there have been no clues or resolutions. The FBI additionally sent an expert team to Havana to investigate all associated locations including the housing where these attacks have occurred. The housing for diplomatic personnel is provided by Cuba and as with all laws and standards, the host country must provide safe conditions and be approved by the U.S. State Department.

So, what are the likely explanations for U.S. personnel and Canadian personnel suffering from hearing loss, brain damage and even speech complications?

Well, as submitted by former CIA official John Sipher, who has served in some hostile nations, there are some explanation(s) as to what those nations have in the past done to U.S. facilities.

During my time overseas, I have had personal experience with several of these “attacks.” In the 1980s and 1990s, the Soviet and then Russian intelligence services deployed doses of nitrophenyl pentaden (NPPD) against American diplomats whom they suspected of managing espionage operations against Russian interests. This so-called “spy dust” was an invisible electromagnetic powder with a customized chemical identifier. It was smeared onto door handles, furniture and cars of suspected American spy handlers. It was a tagging agent used by Russian security elements to covertly monitor their own community by revealing unreported (and potentially espionage related) contacts between Russian and American officials. It was somewhat ingenious. After deploying the invisible material on a suspected U.S. intelligence officer, Russian counter-intelligence would snoop after-hours through the offices of Russian government employees looking for traces of the material. Discovery of the powder in the office of someone who had not reported contact with the American provided significant proof of suspicious activity.

What was not ingenious, however, were the threats to human health. There were concerns at the time that the material was carcinogenic and could be harmful to American diplomats. Following studies, the United States determined there was no specific evidence of a threat to the U.S. diplomatic community since it was only used against a handful of people. As someone who was “dusted,” that explanation didn’t really make me feel much better. However, the substance was at least a step up from earlier Russian tracking devices like radioactive nails hammered into the tires of U.S. diplomatic vehicles, allowing Russian surveillance vehicles to hang back unseen and follow along by using special equipment to track targets’ tire residue.

The Russian security services were also known to flood the U.S. embassy in Moscow with electromagnetic radiation. They would beam concentrated microwaves and electronic pulses at the Embassy in an attempt to eavesdrop on U.S. typewriters and conversations. In the 1970s, a U.S. Ambassador contracted and died of a blood disease that many assumed to be a result of the attacks. The State Department detected high levels of radiation in the embassy staff, and provided hazard pay to personnel who worked in Moscow. A variety of electronic attacks continued over the years to include mobile Russian vans that acted as a giant x-ray that could be directed at diplomats all over town. In a similar fashion, high frequency devices can be used to pulse other devices, perhaps turning on or off collection devices in homes or offices.

Similarly, the Russian security services undertook a massive effort to bug the new embassy building in Moscow with all sorts of technical gear, some of which could potentially affect the health of Americans. Indeed, the new embassy construction was even abandoned in 1985 due to the sheer volume and sophistication of electronic eavesdropping equipment that was found throughout the walls, concrete floors and underground. A second attempt to improve the security of the building also faltered when the United States found an equally aggressive and sophisticated attack, which included building listening devices directly into the steel beams holding the building upright. Even the sidewalks and streets throughout the neighborhood were embedded with electronic collection gear which was designed to turn the embassy building into a giant antenna. The United States lost hundreds of millions of dollars trying to fix the problems, and eventually tore off the top several floors of the Embassy and rebuilt it with specially imported materials put together by American-only labor – an effort the U.S. called the “Top Hat” solution. The decades-long process displayed the remarkable expertise of the Russians in the use of technical sensors and surveillance gear. Russian technology was consistently underestimated by the U.S. and often our best scientists had difficulty understanding what the Russians were up to. Full article here.

Photo Courtesy: CBS

Could Mr. Sipher be missing something or omitting something? Yes.

There is something called vibroacoustic syndrome — the effect of infrasonic output not on your hearing, but on the various fluid-filled parts of your body, which can affect hearing and loss of balance.

The low frequency of infrasonic sound and its corresponding long wavelength makes it much more capable of bending around or penetrating your body, creating an oscillating pressure system. Depending on the frequency, different parts of your body will resonate, which can have very unusual non-auditory effects. For example, one of the ones that occur at relatively safe sound levels (< 100 dB) occurs at 19Hz. If you sit in front of a very good-quality subwoofer and play a 19Hz sound (or have access to a sound programmer and get an audible sound to modulate at 19Hz), try taking off your glasses or removing your contacts. Your eyes will twitch. If you turn up the volume so you start approaching 110 dB, you may even start seeing colored lights at the periphery of your vision or ghostly gray regions in the center. This is because 19Hz is the resonant frequency of the human eyeball. The low-frequency pulsations start distorting the eyeball’s shape and pushing on the retina, activating the rods and cones by pressure rather than light.* This non-auditory effect may be the basis of some supernatural folklore. In 1998, Tony Lawrence and Vic Tandy wrote a paper for the Journal of the Society for Psychical Research (not my usual fare) called “Ghosts in the Machine,” in which they describe how they got to the root of stories of a “haunted” laboratory. People in the lab had described seeing “ghostly” gray shapes that disappeared when they turned to face them. Upon examining the area, it turned out that a fan was resonating the room at 18.98Hz, almost exactly the resonant frequency of the human eyeball. When the fan was turned off, so did all stories of ghostly apparitions. More here.

Going back as far as 1998, the Foreign Military Office at Fort Leavenworth published a short summary of what was described then as ‘wonder weapons’. In part:

A recent edition of U.S. News and World Report highlighted several of these “wonder weapons” (acoustics, microwaves, lasers) and noted that scientists are “searching the electromagnetic and sonic spectrums for wavelengths that can affect human behavior.” A recent Russian military article offered a slightly different slant to the problem, declaring that “humanity stands on the brink of a psychotropic war” with the mind and body as the focus. That article discussed Russian and international attempts to control the psycho-physical condition of man and his decision making processes by the use of VHF-generators, “noiseless cassettes,” and other technologies.

An entirely new arsenal of weapons, based on devices designed to introduce subliminal messages or to alter the body’s psychological and data processing capabilities, might be used to incapacitate individuals. These weapons aim to control or alter the psyche, or to attack the various sensory and data-processing systems of the human organism. In both cases, the goal is to confuse or destroy the signals that normally keep the body in equilibrium.

This article examines energy-based weapons, psychotropic weapons, and other developments designed to alter the ability of the human body to process stimuli. One consequence of this assessment is that the way we commonly use the term “information warfare” falls short when the individual soldier, not his equipment, becomes the target of attack.

A 2014 study in the journal Royal Society Open Science found that low-frequency sounds below the audible range could disrupt little whistles made by the ear, called spontaneous optoacoustic emissions, in response to noise. (How that is mapped to symptoms, however, wasn’t clear.)

In this instance, one possibility is that the infrasound stimulated the part of the ear not dedicated to hearing — the vestibular system that controls balance, Liberman said. In that instance, the symptoms wouldn’t appear immediately.

“You could imagine them being very slow onset and very persistent,” Liberman said. “It might take days before you even notice any funny sensations.”

Sonic Weapons

While the idea of a silent sonic weapon sounds like something out of James Bond, Inspector Gadget or the reject pile of DARPA, the idea of using sound as a weapon has a long history.

For instance, studies show that animals exposed to high-intensity, focused ultrasound can experience lung and brain damage. And a cruise line circling the pirate-infested waters off the Somali coast has taken to using a military-grade “sonic weapon” to deter would-be hijackers, the BBC reported. This long-range device, also known as a sound cannon, can cause permanent hearing loss at distances of up to 984 feet (300 meters), according to the BBC. Other companies have developed a magnetic acoustic device, commonly referred to as a sound laser , that deploys incredibly painful, focused beams of sound to deter people from an area, NPR reported. The Israeli army has also used a device known as “The Scream,” which damages the inner ear, causing nausea and dizziness, Wired reported. More here from FNC.

There is more going on than is being reported. Further, I would be asking all allied nations that have access to Cuba what they know and I would be challenging all SIGINT communications on the island…surely there is chatter about this very event. Since there are some Canadian personnel involved, has Canada made any inquiries and launched investigations? Crickets…

09/27/17

Some folks must have missed those lessons

By: T F Stern | Self-Educated American

I’ve been scratching my brain trying to figure out what happened; I mean, (in my best Arlo Guthrie voice), I mean… how come so many Americans seem to hate just about everything that makes America great.  The latest attention grabbing news for those who may have just finished the crop circle after traveling millions of miles in their alien space craft…taking a knee in protest to our National Anthem prior to participating in a sporting event.  (Image courtesy of Wikipedia)

The news media has been playing on this since it makes them lots of money; viewers can’t get enough.  You do understand that most of the major news media outlets are nothing more than propaganda centers for the far left (communists); tell me you knew this already, you did know this, right?

Here’s a link to one of the many articles which list the 45 ways to destroy America as pointed out in Cleon Skousen’s book “The Naked Communist.  Consider this one of the lessons you might have missed; it’s important.

There are so many lessons about life in America as to make it difficult to fathom which ones were the ones missed by those who hate it so much.  Maybe these will help…

Several years ago my father in law had a medical condition and had been staying with us until his health returned.  When the phone rang it meant someone needed a locksmith and I’d write down the particulars as I prepared to go.  My father in law blurted out, “You have to go to work now.”, his face implying the drudgery of making a living.  I turned to him, smiled and corrected him, “No; now I get to go to work.”  It’s all about appreciating opportunities.

I remember reading an account of the British blasting Fort McHenry in Baltimore Harbor while brave men within made sure the Star Spangled Banner remained upright and visible for all to see.  How many men gave their all for the cause of Liberty; that’s right, so that you and I can enjoy that Liberty even today?

Yes, I stand when the National Anthem is played; you couldn’t hold me down if you tried.  It’s a simple way of showing gratitude for those who fought and died for those intangible God given inalienable rights mentioned in our Declaration of Independence.

Some of you might find it hard to believe; but this land we call America was set apart long ago as a choice land held in reserve for a worthy people, a people who would follow God’s laws and be a shining light upon a hill for the rest of the world to see.

“Behold, this is a choice land, and whatsoever nation shall possess it shall be free from bondage, and from captivity, and from all other nations under heaven, if they will but serve the God of the land, who is Jesus Christ, who hath been manifested by the things which we have written.”

God’s only begotten Son, Jesus Christ gave his life for all of us; the ultimate sacrifice.  Here in America we can follow the dictates of our heart and worship Him; at least that hasn’t changed, at least not yet.

Yes, I stand when the National Anthem is played.  That special tune reminds me to show gratitude for this land of Liberty we call America.  No, I don’t have to stand when they play that tune…That’s right…  I get to stand!

09/25/17

NFL players who #TakeTheKnee should talk to the wounded warriors who no longer can

By: Daniel John Sobieski | Doug Ross @ Journal

Whenever I hear about NFL players taking a knee during the national anthem, I am reminded of the double amputees that have returned from America’s wars. And the fact that while, because of our Armed Services’ sacrifice over centuries, we are entitled to speak freely, but none of us are entitled to do so in a particular forum.

NFL players are employees of a larger organization, just like Curt Schilling was when ESPN fired him for what he thought was protected speech. The speech is protected. Your access to a particular forum is not. They are teammates in a sport that pays these allegedly oppressed spoiled brats millions. Their teammates may share a different view, so does the locker room become a game prep area or a debating society? Does the field remain a porting arena or a campaign rally? Those who take a knee were indeed given that right by many who no longer have knees and are privileged to take a knee in a sport paid for by millions of fans who may disagree with them and who paid to see a game, not a protest. Players who take a knee think they are being patriotic, when they are merely being elf-indulgent and selfish. Go rent out a stadium and invite people to pay just to see you take a knee and see if anybody shows up. The response by the MFL Players Association is disingenuous, at best:

The NFL Players Association, the labor union representing the players, responded to Trump in a statement on Saturday. Here’s an excerpt of the statement:

“The peaceful demonstrations by some of our players have generated a wide array of responses. Those opinions are protected speech and a freedom that has been paid for by the sacrifice of men and women throughout history. This expression of speech has generated thoughtful discussions in our locker rooms and in board rooms. However, the line that marks the balance between the rights of every citizen in our great country gets crossed when someone is told to just ‘shut up and play.'”

Well, shut and play. That’s what people pay you handsomely to do, isn’t it? Although they are getting fewer as NFL ratings drop and outlets like ESPN lose viewers. Why not rename the teams and align ideologically. Tune in Sunday and watch Black Lives Matter line up against Blue Lives Matter? That is why ratings for the Emmys and the Oscars are tanking as people grow weary of working hard to see movies and games only to see self-absorbed and self-righteous millionaires preach to them.

Exercising the freedoms of speech and press that so many have given their last measure of devotion for, Chicago Tribune contributor Diana Goetsch recently penned an op-ed defending disgraced and unemployed former NFL quarterback Colin  Kaepernick and his infamous taking the knee during the national anthem. Not stopping there, Goetsch goes on to slam the national anthem as a “pompous battle number” that wasn’t played before sporting events until 1942 in the dark days of World War II.

One wonders if the likes of Kaepernick and Goetsch have pondered the possibility that were it not for the sacrifice of veterans during World War II she just might be plying her trade writing her tirades in Japanese or German. Were it not for the fact that the flag  the national anthem celebrates was raised at Iwo Jima and never stopped flying at Bastogne during the Battle of the Bulge.  .

Let us make the obligatory stipulation that  the likes of Kaepernick and Goetsch have the right to express their opinions through their actions and words. But not in a forum paid for by others in both blood and treasure. Men, and women, have died or been maimed for life for their right to be obnoxious and insensitive to the heroic sacrifice of others. AsAaron Bandler writes at the Daily Wire:

“Unlike the magisterial ‘America the Beautiful,’ ‘The Star-Spangled Banner’ is a pompous battle number,” wrote Goetsch. “Spurred by a petition bearing 5 million veterans’ signatures, Congress designated it the national anthem in 1931, but it wasn’t until 1942, and our entry into World War II, that it was played on loudspeakers daily before games.”…

Just as Kaepernick has a First Amendment right to protest the national anthem, NFL teams have the First Amendment right to choose not to sign him if they feel like his prior actions will negatively impact their product. That’s how a free market works, whether Goetsch likes it or not.

But most importantly, for Goetsch to refer to the anthem as “a pompous battle number” isn’t just appalling, it’s historically inaccurate. Francis Scott Key penned the anthem after witnessing the American flag prevail over Fort McHenry during the War of 1812 when it initially seemed to him as if Britain was going to win the battle.

That’s what our national anthem is all about: even during the country’s darkest moments, America, the beacon of hope and freedom, finds a way to prevail in the end. That’s why everyone stands for the national anthem before sporting events; it’s a reminder that we are lucky to have the freedom to be able to attend such an event and we should honor those who died to preserve that freedom for us.

Goetsch is free to claim Kaepernick lost his job for political or even marketing reasons, although his performance on the field was less than Hall of Fame stuff. The 49ers or any other team are free to hire or fire him for any reason. In a free country, that’s called the free market.

Liberals tend to be selective in defending free speech. Protests against the flag or the national anthem are to be praised, but public affirmation of faith and traditional values are to be mocked, such as fromer Denver Broncos quarterback Tim Tebow’s slightly different taking of the knee and giving of thanx to the Creator from which all our inalienable rights come.. As Investor’s Business Daily editorialized in 2012:

Even before George Washington is said to have taken a knee in prayer at Valley Forge, men and women of faith and courage endowed by their Creator with inalienable rights have guided this nation to greatness.

Some 45 million people watched Denver Broncos quarterback Tim Tebow complete that 80-yard touchdown pass play to Demaryius Thomas on the first play from scrimmage in overtime to lead his team over the Pittsburgh Steelers in Sunday’s wild card playoff game.

They also saw him take a knee and give thanks to the God he believes in, an act that’s been dubbed “Tebow-ing.”…

On the postgame show, CBS analysts “Tebow-ed” in unison, mocking the seriousness of Tebow’s intent. “Saturday Night Live” has done a skit in which Jesus appears in the Bronco locker room. God does not take sides in football games, Tebow’s critics say.

Tebow would agree with that, but he also acknowledges a higher power’s influence on his life, win or lose, just as the Founding Fathers did when they acknowledged in the Declaration of Independence that we were “endowed by our Creator with certain inalienable rights,” rights such as freedom of speech and freedom of, not from, religion.

On April 25, 1976, back when it was not politically incorrect to be a public patriot, Chicago Cub outfielder Rick Monday made what some call the greatest play ever on a baseball field, a play honored 40 years later at a Dodger game in Chavez Ravine:

Rick Monday was honored by throwing out the first pitch at Monday’s game at Chavez Ravine for arguably the greatest save in Dodgers Stadium history.

What, you say, Monday was an outfielder? And why would he be credited with a save?

Forty years ago on April 25, Monday was playing centerfield for the Cubs in a game against the Dodgers.

The game turned from an ordinary early season game into one with high drama when two people suddenly appeared in the outfield at Dodger Stadium.

Legendary Dodgers announcer Vin Scully said, “”It looks like he’s going to burn a flag!”

One had an American flag. The other, lighter fluid and was planning on burning Old Glory. This was an act Monday, who served in the Marine Corps, was not about to let happen.

Monday raced across the field to grab the flag before it could be burned in protest. Via MLB.com from a story on the 30th anniversary of Monday’s swift action, Monday describes the moment in his own words:

When these two guys ran on the field, something wasn’t right. And it wasn’t right from the standpoint that one of them had something cradled under his arm. It turned out to be an American flag. They came from the left-field corner, went past Cardenal to shallow left-center field.

“That’s when I saw the flag. They unfurled it as if it was a picnic blanket. They knelt beside it, not to pay homage but to harm it as one of the guys was pulling out of his pocket somewhere a big can of lighter fluid. He began to douse it.

“What they were doing was wrong then, in 1976. In my mind, it’s wrong now, in 2006. It’s the way I was raised. My thoughts were reinforced with my six years in the Marine Corp Reserves. It was also reinforced by a lot of friends who lost their lives protecting the rights and freedoms that flag represented.

Diana Goetsch and her ilk are free to exercise their freedoms but they are not free to forget where those freedoms came from and who fought and died for them. She’s a grand old flag. Let’s honor her and what the flag represents every chance we get.

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell whines that President Trump’s rematks about respecting the flag and the national anthem are disrespectful of NFL players:

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said Saturday that President Trump’s recent comments about players kneeling during the national anthem are “divisive” and show a “lack of respect” for the pro football league and its players.

“The NFL and our players are at our best when we help create a sense of unity in our country and our culture,” he said in a statement. “Divisive comments like these demonstrate an unfortunate lack of respect for the NFL, our great game and all of our players, and a failure to understand the overwhelming force for good our clubs and players represent in our communities.”

Millionaires taking a knee during the national anthem to protest alleged social injustice does build unity and is not a force for good. It breeds disunity and divisiveness. Look up in the stands, players, and see the diversity and equality of those, including veterans, who came to see you. Shut up and play.

Those who would take a knee to protest the American flag likely have never been handed a folded one. NFL players who want to take a knee should talk to the wounded warriors who no longer can.  

09/20/17

Can You Hear This? Castro’s Intelligence Operation Inside the United States

By: Denise Simon | Political Vanguard

The Castro brothers of Cuba have been running spy operations inside the United States for decades and only a few have been detected and caught. The FBI has a division devoted to tips, clues and investigations for tracking the evidence and bringing prosecutions. It is tedious work, after all, it is a clandestine craft on both sides.

Cuba has a revenue base of selling intelligence and the global buyers include Iran, Russia, China and even Syria.

In 1998, a group of ten Cuban spies were arrested.

Ten people were charged in the largest Cuban spy ring ever uncovered in the United States since Fidel Castro came to power nearly 40 years ago.

According to the FBI, the spy ring had been under surveillance in south Florida for three years.

The eight men and two women tried to penetrate U.S. military bases, infiltrate anti-Castro groups and manipulate U.S. media and political groups, federal investigators said Monday. One suspect was a civilian employee at the U.S. Naval Air Station in Key West, Fla.

Ana Montes was arrested in 2001 spying for Cuba. She held a key position at the Defense Intelligence Agency where she had access to the most sensitive information within government. Montes shared information with Cuba for an estimated 16 years. Montes was so valuable that she was included in a proposed spy and people swap deal under the Obama administration.

In the successful effort by President Barack Obama to normalize relations with Cuba, a huge swap did happen, where Cuba received all the benefits.

In 2009, yet another Cuban operative case was discovered and investigated at the U.S. State Department, where again very sensitive, classified and top secret information was provided to Cuba.

An indictment and criminal complaint unsealed today in the District of Columbia charges Walter Kendall Myers, 72, a.k.a. “Agent 202,” his wife, Gwendolyn Steingraber Myers, 71, a.k.a. “Agent 123” and “Agent E-634,” with conspiracy to act as illegal agents of the Cuban government and to communicate classified information to the Cuban government. Each of the defendants is also charged with acting as an illegal agent of the Cuban government and with wire fraud.

Kendall Myers was known as Fidel Castro’s personal spy and Hillary Clinton ordered a damage assessment to take place to determine the extent of the damage. Such a report was not forthcoming.

Cuba has deployed the same information tactics as other adversarial government’s intelligence operations and that is to place recruiters and operatives in academia. As higher education employs leftist professors and the syllabus has grown more anti-West, sympathizing more with Marxism and Socialism, campuses across America are ripe incubation centers.

All this brings more of a challenge to the Trump administration and to Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, with the 15-month health scandal in Havana known as some kind of sonic weapon that has resulted in hearing loss and traumatic brain injury for U.S. diplomatic staff on duty in Cuba. Tillerson is considering closing the U.S. embassy in Cuba which is long past due.

Between the corruption, the spying and the health risk to an estimated 21 U.S. personnel, what is the Trump administration waiting for to order operations in Cuba shuttered?

The U.S. said in August it had expelled two Cuban diplomats from the country’s embassy in Washington, D.C., after it revealed details of the suspected attack. Donald Trump’s administration said it had taken the measure in response to Cuba’s failure to protect the U.S. officials under the Vienna Convention.

U.S. officials told the Associated Press last week that the incidents had focused with “laser-like specificity” on rooms or even parts of rooms in houses and a hotel where U.S. staffers were present.

“None of this has a reasonable explanation,” Fulton Armstrong, a former CIA official who served in Havana before America reopened an embassy there in 2015, told the AP. “It’s just mystery after mystery after mystery.”

The FBI, Royal Canadian Mounted Police and Cuban authorities have launched investigations into the attacks.

A group of five Republican senators have written to Tillerson, requesting that the U.S. again shutter its Havana embassy, which Barack Obama opened toward the end of his presidency.

One can only wonder if President Trump will do so.

09/13/17

3 Guns You Need to Own If North Korea Starts a War

By: Mike Coffey

The world seems to crumble under so many natural disasters, but the darkest threat of our days comes from the East and more exactly North Korea. Are we going to fight them? Are they going to launch their missiles?

Nobody knows what is going to happen, but the current uncertainty makes you want to be prepared. People are gathering food, water and other vital supplies in different types of shelters that can withstand a nuclear blast. But is this really necessary

Is North Korea Going to Start a War?

In the last few months we learned with absolute certainty that North Korea is working on improving their nuclear arsenal. Voices in the western world say that the rogue state is working on extending their missiles’ range. So, even though right now they can’t hit important targets in Europe or the US, they might in the near future.

But what is North Korea looking to achieve? A nuclear war will affect the whole world and may put the survival of our very own race at risk. For now, nobody knows with absolute confidence or they don’t want to share with the public. In any case, our future is uncertain at best.

The main conflict is between the US and North Korea and specialists think this happened due to the changes in leadership in both states. Six years ago Kim Jong-Un assumed power and this year, Donald Trump took office. The two leaders seem to lock horns and this doesn’t sit well for the rest of us.

But is North Korea going to start a war? Specialists say we shouldn’t be worried – a war is not going to happen (at least not now). North Korea seems to use their nuclear arsenal as a bargaining chip to get recognition from the US as a nuclear power. So for now, it’s just a matter of pride for the Korean leader.

However, things can go south faster than you think and the only ones to survive such a confrontation will be the ones who prepared ahead.

3 Guns You Should Own

I am not going to talk about nuclear preparedness as it is a topic quite popular these days and information is readily available. Instead I am going to talk about the life after. What happens if you survive the blast?

We know that in any SHTF scenario, the life after will be complete anarchy. The law of the jungle will be dominant, so you need to be among the ones who can defend themselves. For this, you need weapons and below are the top 3 most specialists recommend.

Mossberg 500 Shotgun

Tommy from goog gun weapons swears by the power and efficiency of a shotgun. Even more, you can use different types of ammo in it to shoot anything from small game to big game. So, it is useful for both hunting and self-defense.

The Mossberg 500 is fast and reliable, but you must be careful with the recoil. If you’re not used to shooting with this type of weapon it can be a bit uncomfortable.

S&W .357 Magnum

Yes, this is a revolver, but before you dismiss it for an automatic pistol, let me tell you about reliability. This tiny fellow doesn’t jam too often and when it does, you only have to squeeze the trigger and it un-jams.

It is small, so it’s easy to carry on you regardless of where you go. A rifle or a shotgun attracts attention, but a revolver is easy to keep in your pocket.

The .357 Magnum is great for both self-defense and shooting small game. It is also corrosion resistant, which is great in times of doom.

Marlin Model 336

Number three on my list is a lever action rifle that most preppers like as a survival rifle. It is fast, accurate and lightweight, which makes it great for when you go hunting. It’s also a great weapon for beginners and the magazine is large enough for a ‘spray and pray’ tactic (although highly not recommended during dark times).

The rifle can be used as a backup for the shotgun or vice versa, but it is important to have it.

A Few Final Words…

North Korea may start a war or not, but we have a duty to ourselves and our families to be prepared! For this, I urge you to start practicing your shooting and make sure to keep up to date with the latest news and data from all over the world.

09/4/17

Is North Korea the Bait in the Trap? Will Russia and China Combine to Strike America?

By: Trevor Loudon | New Zeal

My good friend, geopolitical strategist Jeff Nyquist believes that America may be walking into a trap if she attacks North Korea.

Russian President Vladimir Putin and Chinese President Xi Jingping via Getty Images

Russian and Chinese forces are moving into the area. Both countries are clearly preparing for war. Few doubt that America can defeat North Korea alone, but what will happen if Russia and China pile in? The US military is at its weakest point for many years. Right now Russia and China have big advantages in both conventional and nuclear forces. NATO is weak and divided. America is preoccupied with internal strife not seen since the 1960s. What better time could there possibly be to launch WW3 – especially if President Trump can be lured into a first strike?

Tactical advantages combined with the moral high ground if the US shoots first make for a very tempting and long awaited opportunity for Moscow and Beijing. It is now the ‘best time in history’ for the China-Russia relationship.

Why not strike now? Why wait until President Trump has a chance to rebuild Obama’s gravely weakened military?

Do we think that Russia and China did not learn a lesson from the humiliations of the Reagan era?

From JR Nyquist.com:

“The Strategic Significance  of “Russia Hacking the Election”

The political preparation of the morale of the people is of decisive importance in present-day conditions, since the use of weapons of mass destruction in war imposes exceptionally high and unprecedented demands on the political morale of the population.
– Soviet Military Strategy [p. 458]

Last Autumn Russia held a massive nuclear war civil defense exercise involving 40 million people. Russian TV explained, “Schizophrenics from America are sharpening nuclear weapons for Moscow.” Such was the rationale. Meanwhile the United States has no civil defense training for its population at all. Last February President Vladimir Putin ordered a “snap check” of Russia’s armed forces, wanting to know if Russia’s troops were ready for battle. According to Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu, “Special attention should be paid to combat alert, deployment of air defense systems for a time of war.”

On 20 April 2017 The Sunday Express published photos of Russian youngsters being trained with various weapons. There are pictures of children engaged in field exercises, holding rocket launchers, wearing gas masks. It would seem that the Russian government wants to properly train its young people for war. Yet who is really threatening Russia? Who would be crazy enough to launch a war of aggression against the world’s number one nuclear power?

Another 20 April headline states: “WW3 TENSIONS RISE: Shock footage shows Putin’s forces moving to North Korea’s border” — which means that Korea is a place to watch, ideally situated as a hotspot. There is a video which supposedly depicts one of three military trains headed toward the North Korean frontier. There have been reports of helicopters and tanks moving through the area as well.

The evidence of war preparations in Russia and China is plentiful. Russia and China’s prewar moves include: the accumulation of large gold reserves (for when paper currencies begin to collapse); an increase in agricultural output and the stockpiling of food in huge underground cities and bunkers; the production of a new generation of weapons (tanks, fighters, missiles, etc.); the infiltration and corruption of the West’s ruling class;  the exploitation of political divisions in the United States for the purpose of destroying social trust or to encourage a civil war; and publicly pretending that the great power rivalry of previous decades is a thing of the past while secretly continuing that rivalry.

It’s too bad, of course, that the CIA will never discover any of this. The facts may be known, but they will not be acknowledged; instead, they will be explained away. The political imperative of our time has been to claim victory in the Cold War. The economic imperative has been market optimism (i.e., the peace dividend). The West has always been blind to the big picture. Western leaders are psychologically incapable of seeing that Russia and China — as the No. 2 and No. 3 Powers — are logically obligated to strive against the No. 1 Power. As of this writing, the President of the United States may boast that America is ready to rain “fire and fury”on its enemies, but the reality is quite different. America’s enemies are now ready to rain fire and fury upon America; for America is a divided country, intellectually confused, deracinated and demoralized. It is not the powerful, united and stable country of the past. The American people have, in large part, lost their instinct for national self-preservation. They have no real civil defense, yet they do not even feel their defenselessness. They are unprepared and ignorant of their enemy’s motives. Their leaders are a patchwork of plausible crooks, panderers and empty suits.

Last year an anonymous high-ranking NATO military official was quoted by La Stampa as saying, “We are at war, a hybrid war, the last step before the shooting begins.” This is the kind of quote a journalist gets from a frustrated military insider. In the first instance, the insider is frustrated because the national authorities are not raising more troops or building defenses. The insider speaks to the journalist because the powers-that-be are not listening to him. Therefore he pours out his complaints to a reporter. The truth must be told, after all — even if nobody listens. War is coming. War is being prepared against the West. As the anonymous NATO military official explained, “I’ve never seen so many Russian military exercises and provocations at the same time … [they are] meant to test our readiness.”

Speaking of tests: Late last year it was reported that Russia tested 162 new weapons since intervening in Syria. Meanwhile, the communist government of China has officially told its citizens to prepare for the start of World War III. Do they know something we don’t? It seems they do. Graham Allison recently pointed out in a Los Angeles Times Op-Ed, “If war breaks out on the Korean peninsula, China is ready to protect its national interests.” According to Allison, the Chinese are preparing to “push deep into North Korea in the event of crisis.” Allison further noted, “If Chinese and American forces again meet in Korea [as they did during the Korean War of 1950-53] the PLA will not at all resemble the low-tech army of the past.”

Some of our leaders imagine that China and Russia will help the United States contain the North Korean threat. This idea is yet another self-deception. The Russians have given North Korea its weapons of mass destruction. China provides North Korea with conventional weapons and food. There would be no North Korean threat to South Korea, Japan and the U.S. if Russia and China had not nurtured it. Ask yourself why Russia and China have gone to so much trouble? If we have the courage to see, the answer is not far to find.

It has been my contention, for many years, that the KGB defector Anatoliy Golitsyn was generally correct in his analysis of the liberalization that led to the collapse of the USSR. Golitsyn predicted the liberalization before it occurred, and he accurately predicted where it would lead. He said that the communist party would appear to lose its monopoly of power. This would allow Russia access to capital and technology it could not have acquired during the Cold War. This capital and technology would enable Russia, further down the road, to build a military machine second to none. Golitsyn argued that Soviet liberalization was devised with this end in mind. It was also devised to eliminate anti-communism and destroy the West’s vigilance so that communism could make gains across the globe without anyone noticing. If we look at what has happened, from Venezuela and Nicaragua to Brazil and Nepal, South Africa, Congo and Angola, communism did not disappear. It has been victorious in country after country. But nobody in the media says anything. And this is quite telling. Even more alarming, the writings of Trevor Loudon and Cliff Kincaid suggest that communism has successfully penetrated the U.S. Government. There are many questions about the Obama administration which have not been asked; yet if we ask in earnest, the answers might prove more than a little alarming.

The shame of today’s “experts” is their failure to recognize that Golitsyn’s main thesis has endured the test of time. Even more important, his thesis continues to explain what we see today — and what is presently unfolding. Whatever errors he made, Golitsyn grasped the essence of Sino-Soviet grand strategy. It is this strategy that is now manifest in the provocations of North Korea. The old Communist Bloc never went away. It still exists behind the facade of “capitalist” China and “Democratic” Russia. It’s tentacles in Eastern Europe remain intact. It’s agent networks and allied communist parties are still in operation. The North Korean regime is an openly communist regime, even now. It was part of the Communist Bloc and is still supported by Moscow the same as in 1950. The importance of North Korea for Russia and China lies in its geographyKorea is situated in the one theater of operations where Russian and Chinese military forces can unite most effectively together.

The next point to be made about Russian and Chinese war preparations is tricky. In the modern world, military aggression is generally viewed as bad. Those who start wars of aggression are said to be criminals. It follows that the governments of Russia and China want the United States to start the next world war. They want the United States to be criminally culpable. In fact, for many decades Russian military textbooks have assumed that the next great war will be started by the Americans. We read in V.D. Sokolovskiy’s authoritative text, Soviet Military Strategy, “The class essence of bourgeois military strategy lies in the fact that it serves the reactionary aim of preparing war to destroy the most progressive social system — socialism — and to prevent the inevitable development of mankind along the road to communism.” (p. 515, Rand Trans).

It is, in fact, part of Russian and Chinese military doctrine that a future war will be started by the Americans. But do not be fooled. The Russians and Chinese will choose the time and place to begin the war. Through a satellite country they will engineer an irresistible provocation (i.e., an alleged lunatic brandishing nuclear weapons). To this end they have built up Iran and North Korea. We should have no illusions about this. America will be goaded into striking first. But the truth is, Russia and China will use America’s desperate preemptive measures to justify a much larger war of aggression; for the Russian and Chinese military doctrines only pretend to be defensive. In fact, both countries have built their military forces for attacking a distant enemy — the United States of America. One Russian military text states, quite clearly, that, “We believe that the main determinant in the attack is the most decisive operation possible, having for its purpose the total destruction of the enemy’s armed forces, and particularly the destruction of his nuclear weapons; that is, the achievement of results such that he would no longer be capable of offering further resistance.” [From an article by Lt. Gen of Aviation, G. Lobov titled “Comments on Types and Forms of Combat Operations,” Voyennay mysl, 1964, no. 11, p. 15.]

You cannot write such a thing unless you are contemplating a surprise attack; for the safest way to destroy America’s nuclear weapons is to attack them before they are launched. This idea is implied throughout Russian military literature. When I was interviewing the Russian military intelligence defector Stanislav Lunev in 1998, journalist Christopher Ruddy asked him what was the most decisive factor in determining the outcome of a future war. Lunev said it was surprise. Let us be perfectly clear: the Russians plan to strike first. Yet, this strike cannot be out of the blue.

Here is where North Korea comes in. It is the geographical point at which Russian and Chinese forces can be combined. It is a regime predicated on nuclear provocation. How long can the United States continue to ignore the “North Korean madman”? Thus, it is only obvious that the United States is being goaded, little by little. The American president is being led to believe that he hasn’t any choice in the matter, that North Korea must be preemptively attacked.

And what happens if the U.S. launches a preemptive attack on North Korea?

The Russians and Chinese will denounce as “aggression” any preemptive strike on North Korea and launch a prompt counter-attack against the United States. In the resulting battle the United States would almost certainly lose an aircraft carrier. The blow to American prestige would be tremendous. The president of the United States would probably be forced to resign, or he would be impeached. Perhaps there would be a military coup. The dollar would fall and America’s allies would be encouraged by Russia and China to abandon the United States and realign themselves with the new East Bloc.

Next, we must consider (in this context) the ongoing investigation of the 2016 election and the oft-heard public accusations against the President of the United States; namely, that he is in the pay of the Russians — or that the Russians put him in the White House. If so, why did they put him there? Such a question seems absurd in the context of peace. In the context of a world war, however, this question is like a dagger aimed at America’s heart; for as the U.S. commander-in-chief is accused of colluding with Russia, what becomes of national morale? Immediately the country is divided on the rightfulness of the highest military authority, and a “house divided” cannot stand.

Therefore we must add to the list of Russia’s war preparations the idea — inserted into our national consciousness — that Russia “hacked the U.S. presidential election.” This idea wounds the U.S. president and damages national morale in advance of a war. In fact, it is probable that this idea was invented in a Russian think tank with a military purpose in mind. As we see from the “Golden Shower Dossier,” Russia has intentionally fueled this rumor of Trump’s disloyality.

There is also the campaign, which began in 2013, in which Putin is portrayed as a Christian and defender of Western Civilization. This is absurd, of course, and only believed by people who haven’t studied Putin carefully. Yet Patrick Buchanan, a famous American conservative, praises Putin and encourages other conservatives to follow suit. Meanwhile, the same Leftists who would have been arrested if war had broken out in 1973 are posturing as anti-Russian patriots. If war breaks out, who is sent to prison? Conservatives or Marxists?

The bizarre political situation of today, whereby the Left levels treason charges against an elected American president, represents a stunning role reversal. The evidence against President Trump does not warrant the resulting hysteria which continues month after month. And yet, if anyone wishes to understand this strange development they have only to realize that it’s part of a Russian prewar active measure — plain and simple. There is no other interpretation of these events that so succinctly and perfectly explains them.

09/4/17

Starfish Prime, a Response to North Korea?

By: Denise Simon | Founders Code

The United States knows all too well about an EMP. With regard to North Korea, the Kim regime has acknowledged it was active in EMP pursuits. The U.S. has EMP weapons developed by Boeing.

So what is Starfish Prime?

On July 9, 1962 — 50 years ago today — the United States detonated a nuclear weapon high above the Pacific Ocean. Designated Starfish Prime, it was part of a dangerous series of high-altitude nuclear bomb tests at the height of the Cold War. Its immediate effects were felt for thousands of kilometers, but it would also have a far-reaching aftermath that still touches us today.

In 1958, the Soviet Union called for a ban on atmospheric tests of nuclear weapons, and went so far as to unilaterally stop such testing. Under external political pressure, the US acquiesced. However, in late 1961 political pressures internal to the USSR forced Khrushchev to break the moratorium, and the Soviets began testing once again. So, again under pressure, the US responded with tests of their own.

It was a scary time to live in.

The US, worried that a Soviet nuclear bomb detonated in space could damage or destroy US intercontinental missiles, set up a series of high-altitude weapons tests called Project Fishbowl (itself part of the larger Operation Dominic) to find out for themselves what happens when nuclear weapons are detonated in space. High-altitude tests had been done before, but they were hastily set up and the results inconclusive. Fishbowl was created to take a more rigorous scientific approach. Read more here.

The Wall Street Journal published an item offering insight regarding North Korea and the threat of an EMP and the United States is not prepared for such a weapon in either a defensive or offensive posture without some exceptional consequence to life.

As South Korea performed some live fire drills in response to the last nuclear test by North Korea that measured a 6.3 on the Richter Scale, at issue is the immediate line of an estimated thousands of rockets pointed at South Korea. It would take a robust offensive first strike to remove this border threat in cadence with other strike operations into the North Korea tunnel network where most of the weaponry is located.

Finally, South Korea’s leader has taken a more aggressive posture, leaning towards a military operation and this could bring them closer to Japan which is a positive indication where activities to neutralize North Korea are tantamount.

Tensions sharply escalated Sunday as the communist regime conducted what it claims to have been a test of a hydrogen bomb mountable on an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM). The test was only the latest in a recent series of saber-rattling, including two ICBM tests in July.

In its report to the legislature’s defense committee, the defense ministry said that it, in consultation with Washington, will seek to deploy a nuclear-powered aircraft carrier, strategic bombers and other powerful assets to the peninsula as a response to the North’s nuclear experiment.

It also unveiled its plan to stage unilateral live-fire drills involving Taurus air-to-surface guided missiles mounted on its F-15K fighter jets. The missile, with a range of 500 kilometers, is capable of launching precision strikes on the North’s key nuclear and missile facilities.

In his assessment of the sixth nuke test, Song said that the North is presumed to have reduced the weight of a nuclear warhead to below 500 kilograms. More here.

Adding more sanctions on China or those doing business with North Korea does not stop or deter North Korea at all. China knows precisely what North Korea is doing and has not moved to stop any of this missile or nuclear activity.

North Korea’s nuclear test occurred in Punggye-ri, the same site where a nuclear test occurred in January 2016, about 50 miles away from the border with China. Tremors were felt in the Chinese border city of Yanji, home to about 400,000 people, Chinese media reported.  The latest test occurred as China hosted the leaders of the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) countries for their annual summit. China “strongly condemned” North Korea’s provocation and a draft communique from the BRICS summit quoted in Chinese state media “strongly deplored” North Korea’s nuclear test but called for a peaceful solution to the crisis. More here.

All the alleged professionals continue to say the United States, Japan and South Korea have no good options with regard to North Korea and there may be some truth to that given the descriptions as defined here.

What is left out of all conversations is the cyber abilities of the United States, knocking out North Korea’s space segments on existing satellites owned by China, Iran or Russia and lastly once again dusting off the files of Starfish Prime as described below:

Launched via a Thor rocket and carrying a W49 thermonuclear warhead (manufactured by Los Alamos Scientific Laboratory) and a Mk. 2 reentry vehicle, the explosion took place 250 miles (400 km) above a point 19 miles (31 km) southwest of Johnston Island in the Pacific Ocean. It was one of five tests conducted by the USA in outer space as defined by the FAI. It produced a yield equivalent to 1.4 megatons of TNT.

The Starfish test was one of five high altitude tests grouped together as Operation Fishbowl within the larger Operation Dominic, a series of tests in 1962 begun in response to the Soviet announcement on August 30, 1961 that they would end a three-year moratorium on testing.[2]

In 1958 the United States had completed six high-altitude nuclear tests, but the high-altitude tests of that year produced many unexpected results and raised many new questions. According to the U.S. Government Project Officer’s Interim Report on the Starfish Prime project:

“Previous high-altitude nuclear tests: YUCCA, TEAK, and ORANGE, plus the three ARGUS shots were poorly instrumented and hastily executed. Despite thorough studies of the meager data, present models of these bursts are sketchy and tentative. These models are too uncertain to permit extrapolation to other altitudes and yields with any confidence. Thus there is a strong need, not only for better instrumentation, but for further tests covering a range of altitudes and yields.”[3]   

More details here.

08/14/17

Sergey Shoigu Planned with Maduro to Stop NATO in Latin America

By: Denise Simon | Founders Code

And Venezuela needs the money, too bad Maduro capitulated on oil rights for power.

Shoigu’s Successes

Sergey has many successes on his resume, all of which make him a possible candidate for President. Here are some:

– Russia’s military success in Crimea, East Ukraine, Syria, South Ossetia, Chechnya, and down the border of NATO countries, Sergey and Russia were viewed as force well protected that can show effectiveness and efficiency in military actions

– Shoigu was minister in the Ministry of emergency situations for almost 22 years. During that time, he efficiently used the advantages of Russian bureaucracy and legalism to gather power and popularity, all while not making a single enemy

– Sergey showed pragmatic approach in addressing former American defense secretary Chuck Hagel with his personal name, not with his surname, which was practice before

Militarization of Russia

Since 2013, Russia and Moscow were heavily criticized for spending large amounts of money on armed forces. Many Western leaders thought that Putin is the man pulling the strings, and that it was his idea to spend so much money, despite his weak economy that is too much oil-dependent. However, what few people outside of Russia knew until lately is that Sergey Shoigu, the Russian defense minister is the one responsible for the huge expansion. More here.

In April of this year, Maduro’s Defense Minister paid an interesting visit to Moscow. Vladimir Padrino Lopez the Defense Minister, would meet his Russian counterpart, Sergey Kuzhugetovich Shoygu, at a conference on international defense.

I have come (to Moscow) upon the orders of President Nicolás Maduro,” Padrino said in the video. He added: “I bring a very interesting, a very important point (to the conference), which is NATO’s projection in Latin America, its consequences and risks.”

Beyond the excuse of the conference, why is Maduro’s Defense Minister, the man who “pulls the strings of power behind the scenes” in Venezuela according to García Otero, visiting Moscow precisely when massive citizen protests are posing an existential threat to the Chavista regime? The answer may have to do with what is perhaps the least analyzed aspect of the Venezuelan crisis: the geostrategic implications of a failed state in Venezuela from the point of view of the world’s great powers.

There certainly has been a shift in Washington’s attitude toward the Venezuelan regime since Donald Trump arrived at the White House. As the PanAm Post explained in 2016, the Obama administration carried out a three-pronged strategy in Latin America, its aims being:

  1. Achieving the dangerous pact between Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos and the communist FARC guerrillas.
  2. Renewing diplomatic and commercial relations with the Castros’ Cuba after more than five decades since the Cuban embargo was put in place.
  3. Appeasing the Maduro regime in Venezuela in order to guarantee the success of the Santos-FARC pact while preventing the implosion of the Cuban economy, which depends on Venezuelan oil for its survival (Obama wanted to avoid a Mariel Boatlift-type humanitarian crisis on the coasts of Florida).

Yes, there is some indication that NATO may begin cultivating members nations in Latin America, Putin is on the move using Iran, Cuba and Venezuela. Now you know why Vice President Pence is on a tour in Latin America.

When President Trump mentioned just a few days ago about a military option in Venezuela, he had something in mind due to the above meetings and building Russian influence in the region. Beginning in Columbia, Pence discussions began this way:

Colombia is one of the United States’ closest allies in the Western Hemisphere, yet, as he stood next to Pence, Santos denounced Trump’s threat of military action, and told the visiting vice president that such a possibility “shouldn’t even be considered” and would be “unacceptable.”

“Every country in Latin America would not favor any form of military intervention, and that is why we are saying we are intent on looking into other measures, some of which are already underway and others to be implemented in the future,” Santos said.

The concerns build as Maduro’s Vice President, El Aissami, has deep ties to Hezbollah of Iran and he was responsible for those tens of thousands of passports illegally issued for Syrians. Of course Putin is running Assad of Syria with the aid of Iran. Weapons abound globally. Vladimir Padrino Lopez is the mastermind and driver of the region.

The ideology of Venezuela’s minister of defense, Vladimir Padrino López, is captured in a 2015 photo of him kneeling before Fidel Castro. But he is reputed to be even closer to the Kremlin. This January, Venezuela launched a series of civil-military exercises around the country, dubbed Plan Zamora, under the guidance of advisers from Iran, Russia and Cuba.

Russia supplies arms to Venezuela. In November the Kremlin sent new aviation and air-defense technology to Caracas. Reuters reported in May that Venezuela now has “5,000 Russian-made MANPADS surface-to-air weapons,” representing “the largest known stockpile in Latin America.” More here from the WSJ.

For a comprehensive timeline and names, go here… excellent work going back to 2015 investigating the Russian, Cuban, Iranian and Venezuelan operation.

08/13/17

Next, Russia to Annex Belarus Under Zapad 2017?

By: Denise Simon | Founders Code

Ships set out from Northern Fleet headquarters in Severomorsk. Photo: mil.ru

Northern Fleet announces big-scale exercise

It will include about 50 vessels and is held as a preparatory phase to the upcoming «Zapad-2017» drills.

The Northern Fleet, the most powerful of Russia’s five fleets, is unfolding a special exercise which includes key parts of fleet capacities.

The drills will be headed directly by Russian Navy Head Commander Vladimir Korolyev and will last «for several days», the Northern Fleet informs.

Included are about 50 ships, submarines and support vessels. Also aircrafts, helicopters from the Air Force and Air Defense will be deployed, a Navy representative says to Interfax.

The drills are held as several of the most powerful Northern Fleet vessels are on their way home after participation in a Navy parade outside St.Petersburg.  Among them are battle cruiser «Pyotr Veliky» and typhoon-class submarine «Dmitry Donskoy».

It is likely that the returning vessels will take part in the exercise.

In the course of the training, antisubmarine and anti-sabotage activities will be conducted along with navigational, hydrographical, anti-mine and search and rescue operations.

According to the Navy representatives, the exercise is held as a preparatory phase to the large-scale joint Russian-Belarus drills «Zapad-2017» scheduled for the period 14-20 September.

***

Russia Plans to Annex Belarus in Military Drill, Says Georgia’s Ex-President

Russia’s leadership is angling to annex its closest western neighbor during upcoming military drills, according to the former leader of Georgia. Mikheil Saakashvili made the comments on the anniversary of his own country’s brief conflict with Moscow that resulted in Russian troops cordoning off Georgia’s two northern regions.

Referring to the much anticipated joint Russian-Belarusian drill in the Baltic region, the former president said: “What we are seeing in Belarus, I think that Russia is planning to take and annex Belarus.” Saakashvili, who is a longtime critic of Russian President Vladimir Putin, spoke to told Baltic news agency BNS ahead of the drill, called Zapad and scheduled for September.

Lithuania, a NATO ally that borders with Russia, has expressed concern that the drill indicates a wider threat to the alliance, constituting a “simulated” attack. NATO has demanded that Russia allows for more transparency in the drill, nominally set to involve around 12,000 troops. However, Russia has previously sparked much bigger exercises to go in tandem with drills such as Zapad, upping the number of troops from the promised levels.

“During the drill, infrastructure will be brought in,” Saakashvili said. “In that sense the threat [from Russia] has not disappeared rather it only grows. It is just that until now Ukrainians have held it at its own borders [with Russia].”

Saakashvili was president of Georgia until 2013, when he lost the election and left the country for Ukraine. He was made a Ukrainian citizen and appointed as governor of Ukraine’s Odessa region in 2015 by Petro Poroshenko after the revolution that brought the pro-Europe, pro-West government to power.

His reputation as a hardline opponent of the Kremlin’s foreign policy and his imposing oratorical style made him popular quickly, and he was tipped to be the country’s next prime minister. But his often combative manner and vows to “clean up” corrupt Ukrainian institutions, put him at odds with established political figures. Ukraine stripped him of his citizenship in 2017 and he became a stateless person. He has dismissed it, and Georgia’s previous decision to strip him of citizenship, as political decisions by governments that have fallen out with him.

Despite enjoying Western support for his hawkish positions on Russia and for his campaigns against corruption, Saakashvili’s leadership of Georgia was not without its critics. The European Union criticized his decision-making during a 2008 political crisis that sparked a five day war with Russia. Under Saakashvili’s command, Georgian forces tried to restore control over two of its regions that have declared independence under Russian military sponsorship.

Belarus’s President Alexander Lukashenko has dismissed concerns that Zapad is anything but a routine defense drill. “We traditionally carry out these drills with Russia,” he said in July. Although strongly reliant on Russia in most regards, the Belarusian government has shown some signs of disagreement with its bigger partner in what the two countries symbolically call “the Union State.”

Despite a Kremlin push to deploy an airbase in Belarus, Minsk has resisted that initiative. The Union State relationship— a post-Soviet branding of Minsk and Moscow’s close relationship—looked in minor jeopardy earlier this year when Russia responded to Belarus’s looser visa-regime for Westerners by starting border checks between the two countries.

Jamestown has a more detailed summary, in part:

In the exercise scenario used for the Zapad series of exercises, there is undoubtedly a NATO dimension. This stems from Moscow’s response, opposition and complete rejection on political and legal grounds of the 1999 NATO bombing of Serbia. The events of 1999 loom large today in Russian strategic thinking and are also reflected in how the General Staff approaches the planning for a Zapad exercise. Consequently, while there is currently a Western preoccupation with the possibility of a Russian offensive operation against the Baltic States, in Moscow’s view the more likely scenario of conflict erupting on Russia’s periphery with NATO stems from an Allied intervention in Belarus. As a result, the Zapad 2017 exercise will place all operational and scenario activities under a defensive guise in response to foreign intervention, demanding a response to protect the Russia-Belarus Union State (Regnum, July 11).

Some Russian commentaries show awareness of the concern expressed by Alliance members about Zapad 2017 and its potentially aggressive rehearsal of operations against its members from Belarusian territory: these suggestions are, of course, the subject of much derision. However, there are indications of some features of the joint exercise that will come into play in September to which NATO must pay additional attention. The first is the extent to which Zapad 2017 will fine-tune joint operations carried out by the elite airborne and special forces units of Belarus and Russia. Such preparation occurred in early April, with these forces rehearsing joint operations in the Vitebsk Region in Belarus over an area of 12,000 square kilometers. The focus was on parachute landings, reconnaissance, and action to fix and locate enemy forces. During these tactical-level exercises, elite troops were also tasked with establishing the best areas to land the “main force” and coordinating air cover for these forces. On April 11–13, a parachute company from the 106th Airborne Division (Tula) relocated to Brest and, in close coordination with Belarusian counterparts as well as interior troops, worked on training tasks to block and defeat four groups of “illegal armed formations,” which had broken into strategically important facilities in the region (Nezavisimaya Voyennoye Obozreniye, June 16).

In a related preparation for Zapad 2017, in May, a one-week tactical exercise involved the electronic warfare (EW) forces of Belarus and Russia, using three training grounds in Brest and Vitebsk Regions. Whereas the elite and special forces tactical exercises had an alleged terrorist dimension, the joint EW exercises were clearly aimed against a conventionally armed opponent. They focused upon joint EW operations against a high-technology opponent operating in a “complex electronic environment.” The development of the joint force capabilities to protect the Union State is seen in Moscow as reflecting developments within modern local wars and armed conflicts. The EW component of Zapad 2017 will thus prove to be an integral part of the rehearsal of joint operations (Nezavisimaya Voyennoye Obozreniye, June 16).

08/11/17

The New York Channel to North Korea is in Play

By: Denise Simon | Founders Code

His name is Joseph Yun, a U.S. diplomat at the United Nations, one that the North Korean regime has reached out to more than once. Most recently it was over the return of Otto Warmbier and his release.

Under the Obama administration, all talks were terminated during the time Sweden was the communications envoy of record. With the transfer of power and government to Donald Trump, Pyongyang opened up the back channel via the United Nations to Joseph Yun, who has long diplomatic experience in the region.

While preparations are in place according to President Trump should Kim launch his 4 missiles toward Guam, Pentagon Chief Mattis declares the United States and allies are ready. That still leaves North Korea with nuclear weapons, a condition every expert is omitting in talking points. Secretary of State Tillerson says his work is to get North Korea to stop with the missile program and that will not likely occur as it is a proxy operation of Iran.

The Kim regime is keeping his estimated 60 nuclear weapons for a bargaining tool and global legitimacy. That is the real problem. Many experts declare that North Korea always backs down in the end when they get food or sanctions relief, but we are dealing with a new Kim that is far more unpredictable than his father.

So, what can the U.S. and allies do going forward? Shall we continue to rely on China? They are anything but a friend or a cooperative partner stating in local Chinese news that China will remain neutral should Kim strike first. Further, China declared that if the United States went to a preemptive posture, China would stop us.

China has total ownership and power in the region and certainly when it comes to navigation, so any U.S. naval activity angers them.

The United States has other options and tools, where not one, but a combination of all, may also be deployed. That includes forcing a regime change, not always the best solution. Then there is the special forces deployment to covertly enter North Korea and work on a detonation of key command and control sites. Special operations has trained for this kind of operation for more than 20 years.

There is a cyber option, a tool that several experts declare has already been used so that Kim’s missiles miss targets or fail on re-entry.

Dealing with China to control North Korea is a fool’s errand as Russia and Iran are part of the total equation. There could still be wider consequences when the United States and allies prevail over North Korea on the missile side, again the nuclear inventory remains and is traded to other rogue nations such as Iran or Syria.

There are other allies included in the variables regarding North Korea. They include Australia, Japan and Britain, where Canada, Germany and France remain silent. Japan has just deployed a missile defense system in a defensive mode.

The media continues to declare that any military conflict will lead to millions dying. That is only true if North Korea is successful on a land based conflict hitting Seoul. The U.S. uses only precision guided munitions where collateral damage would not affect other regions of North Korea, hence millions would not escape across the Yalu river into China. China has a standing army at that border preventing such an event.

China and North Korea want the peninsula to be unified and under Chinese control which is much the case concerning the waterways in dispute along with the contested islands. China fears that the United States is working to unify the peninsula under S. Korean control, which has not been an objective.

In summary, while fear for days has been the media headlines, it cannot be fully dismissed that a near term conflict will likely be resolved, leaving North Korea with a viable nuclear weapons and missile program. The coordination between Iran and North Korea will continue in that same realm and Trump is left with the same festering issue of previous presidents.

Will there be a Chinese naval blockade if the United State and allies go for a preemptive strike? Perhaps that New York Channel to Pyongyang has the burden of finding out. Has someone sent an envoy to Tehran yet with these discussions? Nah… Russia meanwhile is keeping a keen eye on all of it.