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nightsticker • 5 years ago

Col Lang,

Retired general McCrystal wrote a most surprising [shameful] article
in today's Washington Post. Apparently he has now seen the light
and realizes that Robert E. Lee was not worthy of his [McCrystal's]
respect all these years. Mrs McCrystal gave him a picture of R.E.Lee
when they first married and it hung in their living room since then. But
recently he sent it off to the landfill saying 'good riddance'. You see, Stan
has had this epiphany and he now he realizes that R.E. Lee was a slave owner
and a traitor. In the same vein he now realizes that opposing lesbians, queers,
transgenders,and [I forget what other perverts he mentioned] in
the military is sort of like favoring slavery, etc etc. He now realizes
the full implications of all those Army forts named after Confederate
Generals [wrong message to young soldiers].There is a lot more in this
vein but you get the idea.
I am hoping that the explanation is as simple as he stopped taking his medications
but even so.........
Needless to say he is probably now "acceptable" in certain circles [Washington Post, etc].
Could this have been the motive?

Keith Harbaugh • 5 years ago

In the opinion piece in WaPo, McChrystal describes what led to his epiphany:

In the summer of 2017, my wife, Annie, urged me to take down the
picture [of General Lee].
Disgusted by the images of hate and white supremacy that had
descended on Charlottesville in the form of angry, torch-bearing men,
she felt that Lee’s picture risked offending guests to our home by
sending an unintended message of agreement with the protesters who had
sought to preserve a statue of the Marble Man.
Initially, I argued that Lee was an example of apolitical loyalty and stoic adherence to duty.
But as days passed, I reflected on the way that Lee’s legacy looked to
people who hadn’t grown up with my perspective or my privilege.

I have a question and a comment:

1) Just what was the “privilege” McChrystal felt he had?
Going to West Point? That was surely an honor, but I thought it was an earned honor.
Growing up in an intact family, with a loving and caring set of parents?
If that was the case (I don't know if it was), that was a gift from his parents.
Many wives have been quoted as saying, essentially, that they were only staying married for the good of their children.
I must say that I can sympathize with that perspective.
Yes, being a traditional wife does involve foreclosing some options for "growth".
But it is interesting that the "growth" for women is often defined in individual terms, rather than in terms of what is best for the future of society.
And some men are or were, no doubt, highly imperfect as husbands.
I put myself in that category.

2) So McChrystal's wife both gave him the portrait and requested its removal.
I am not surprised. But I wonder how much of the leftward movement of some men is due to the lobbying of women.
nightsticker may recall a slogan that was incessantly quoted in the media during the Vietnam War: “Girls say yes to boys who say no.”, referring to saying no to the draft.
Today, there are numerous reports in the Washington media of eligible women choosing whom they will date and socialize with based on a preference, even a demand, for a left-leaning male partner (if they are even interested in a man at all).
Then there is the documented “gender gap” in voting patterns.
And as to my personal experience, I well remember my ex-wife declaring that my expressed politically incorrect opinions were "hateful". (This well after we first married.)
Again, I wonder about the extent to which the leftward tilt of some men is due to pressure from women.

Pat Lang • 5 years ago

I have recently noticed this tendency brought on by pressure from women relatives.

Pat Lang • 5 years ago

I saw him push his book a few weeks ago on TV. I think he is just chasing the money in the spirit of this wretched time. "Duty, Honor, Country."

James Thomas • 5 years ago

Snowden accuses Israeli cybersecurity firm of enabling Khashoggi murder:

I don't know whether to think that Bibi is one of the people who wants MBS gone, or to think that private security firms are increasingly running of the leash.

Likbez • 5 years ago

It looks like UK and USA are engaged in the contest to see who can come up with the most surreal anti-Russian propaganda psy-ops.

British Government Runs Secret Anti-Russian Smear Campaigns

That shed some light on the common origin of MH17, Russiagate and Scripal propaganda campaigns connecting all three with British government's psy-op operation called The ' Integrity Initiative ' which builds 'cluster' or contact groups of trusted journalists, military personal, academics and lobbyists within foreign countries. These people get alerts via social media to take action when the British center perceives a need.

And among others participant William Browder is listed too:

Members of the Atlantic Council, which has a contract to
censor Facebook posts , appear on several cluster lists. The UK core cluster also
includes some prominent names like tax fraudster William Browder , the daft Atlantic Council shill Ben Nimmo and the neo-conservative Washington Post columnist Anne Applebaum. One person of interest is Andrew Wood who handed the Steele 'dirty dossier' to Senator John McCain to smear Donald Trump over alleged relations with Russia. A separate subcluster of so-called journalists names Deborah Haynes, David Aaronovitch of the London Times, Neil Buckley from the FT and Jonathan Marcus of the BBC.

Here is one interesting comment from MoA:

Anya , Nov 24, 2018 11:57:00 AM

The British government has been running a serious meddling into the US affairs:


"The UK's Secret Intelligence Service, otherwise known as MI6, has been scrambling to prevent President Trump from publishing classified materials linked to the Russian election meddling investigation. ... much of the espionage performed on the Trump campaign was conducted on UK soil
throughout 2016."

A Steele & Skrupal's anti-Russian / anti-Trump saga: https://spectator.org/big-d...

"Gregory R. Copley, editor and publisher of Defense & Foreign Affairs, posited that
Sergei Skripal is the unnamed Russian intelligence source in the Steele dossier. ... In
Skripal's pseudo-country-gentleman retirement, the ex-GRU-MI6 double agent was selling custom-made "Russian intelligence"; he had fabricated "material" that went into the Steele dossier..."

For M16 to expose this level of stupidity is stunning.
David Habakkuk • 5 years ago


Although this is thoroughly sinister, there are funny, and sad sides.

The driving forces appear to be Christopher Donnelly, who used to head the Soviet Studies Research Centre at Sandhurst, and a curious figure by the name of Daniel Lafayeedney, who among his other claims to fame was a delegate, apparently representing the Britain Israel Communications & Research Centre, at the 2007 Herzliya Conference.

(See https://forum.prisonplanet.... .)

This was where they were discussing the clusterf**k created by the kind handover of Iraq to religious Shia closely linked to Tehran, orchestrated by George W. Bush and Tony Blair, and the defeat of the IDF by Hezbollah in the Lebanon war in 2006..

I had thought that Donnelly was a serious scholar. In part, this was due to an ironic accident. The U.S. Army’s Soviet Army Studies Office, founded in 1986 at Fort Leavenworth, was I think in part modelled on the Soviet Studies Research Centre.

The Fort Leavenworth operation, which after the collapse of the Soviet Union became the Foreign Military Studies Office, employed some of the best scholars of Soviet/Russian military strategy one can find anywhere: among them Colonel David M. Glantz, Bruce W. Menning, and Jacob W. Kipp.

This was one reason – although not the only one – that I had assumed that Donnelly was not a prize dolt.

How wrong one can be.

One interesting feature of the material is the apparent ability of those who were involved in producing it to believe, at one and the same time, two contradictory propositions.

So, Dmitri Alperovitch Matt Tait, et al, told us that the GRU and FSB have magnificent hackers, who can recover everything the DNC does and hand it to WikiLeaks. At the same time, the possibility appears not to have crossed the minds of Donnelly, Lafayeedney and their associates that Russian hackers could access what they were producing and publish what they thought fit.
Another interesting feature of the material is the paranoia about Trump.

(See the ‘Integrity Initiative Guide to Countering Russian Disinformation May 2018’, on the site which produces the materials: https://www.cyberguerrilla.... .)

This is, I think, very important in understanding the way that people like Christopher Steele, Sir Richard Dearlove, and Robert Hannigan – I cannot remember whether they have knighted him yet or not, they often do with prize idiots in England, but it can take some time – have behaved.

On a more personal note, I see old friends reappearing.

Among the experts in this network I found Tim Reilly, who ought to be in prison for conspiracy to pervert the course of justice in relation to Sir Robert Owen’s farce of an inquiry into the death of Alexander Litvinenko,

Amd tjhen, to my slight surprise, I found that the Spanish ‘cluster’-- which appears to have been very successful -- is run by Francis Ghilès.

He is a – genuine – trilingual expert on the Maghreb, who I had known very slightly when I worked on the foreign desk of the ‘Financial Times’ in 1976-8, before going into television.

Some years later, he was got rid of by the paper, for reasons which may reflect less on him than on them, and now works for a ‘think tank’ in Barcelona.

Sometime in the mid-2000’s – I would need to check whether it is likely initially to have been a response to letters I wrote to that paper, or to my starting commenting on SST – Francis suddenly displayed an extraordinary desire to renew the acquaintance.

At one point, he let slip that he knew Donnelly – and seemed somewhat surprised when I told him I had no links with anyone, but simply said what I thought on places which were prepared to publish it.

A particular interesting document in the materials – which, obviously, I am still assimilating – deals with the activities of the Spanish ‘cluster’, apparently run by Francis, and also the central role of the Lithuanians in the creation of the ‘New Cold War.’

Well, they had every opportunity to try to work towards some kind of healing of the wounds of the last century. If Lithuanians want to live on the faultline of the ‘new Cold War’, in which we confront the kind of Eurasian consolidation at the possibility of which Sir Halford Mackinder pointed back in 2004, all one can say is ‘tu l’as voulu, Georges Dandin.’

Obviously, I am not trying to exculpate my own people. Some of us tried to stop this, but we were far too few.

(See https://www.pdf-archive.com... .)

Eugene Owens • 5 years ago

Violent clashes last night between ISIL and the SDF near both Bahra and Hajin in the Middle Euphrates River Valley or MERV. Christian Assyrian elements of the SDF successfully repelled a fierce ISIL attack near Hajin by 'forlorn hope' inghimasi that were preceded VBIED kamikazes.

Also, Turkey's Defense Minister is pushing back against the Mattis plan to put Coalition Observation Towers along the Turkish/Syrian border in areas of the northeast controlled by the SDF. He had previously told the US repeatedly not to establish observation posts.

Pat Lang • 5 years ago

IMO Mattis is going to have an increasingly rough ride. The Messican Border thing may well do him in.

Eugene Owens • 5 years ago

Why the border? Is he being set up?

Pat Lang • 5 years ago

1291 The Hospitallers fighting on the walls of Acre

JerseyJeffersonian • 5 years ago

Greetings All,

In this world where McCrystal can be fully revealed as a man with no honor to speak of, Ukrainian provocateurs are encouraged to behave foolishly, and border crashers are at the southern gates with uncertain outcomes, I bring a report of humanity at its best. I was watching the Science Channel's Space Monday programming, when a live coverage of the final approach of InSight Mars Lander broke in. The landing was a success, the first image from the Martian surface was received, & the lander had no problems to report. Congratulations to the scientists & technicians at NASA for this initial success, and hopes for the augmentation of knowledge that the mission may bring. Oh, and thanks for giving us something of which to be proud...for a welcome change. Sigh.


The best from this unapologetic, ever hopeful nerd,

Keith Harbaugh • 5 years ago

PL, sometime ago you asked who "sundance" was, or is.
I didn't see any published answers at the time, and I had nothing substantive to add.

However, sundance has now published something that indicates he has an unusually detailed knowledge of the rules for U.S. Congress hearings.
What prompted his report was James Comey's well-publicized unwillingness to appear behind closed doors.
Sundance suggested the reason why a closed door hearing would be more productive in a blog post and, in much more detail, in a thread.

Whoever sundance is, he seems to know much about both Congress's procedures and the workings of the media/political Washington establishment.

Tom Verso • 5 years ago

Col. you may understandably not want to go down this road. But, I would very much be interested in you thoughts if you see fit.

Over at Unz Review there was a very thought provoking article by a fellow called ‘The Saker’, who regularly writes about military issues.

"Thanking Vets for Their "Service" – Why?"

The ‘punch line’:

“In simple and plain English, veterans are those who signed up to kill people outside the US for money.”

The 145 comments are very lively.

Mine: “No doubt about all possible benefits for draftees. But, benefits for volunteers is something worth giving some thought to.

Back in the 1960s the Hippies had a saying: “What if someone gave a war and no one showed up?” I think about that a lot especially regarding Afghanistan. Politicians keep asking the question: How can we end that 17 year war?” Well the People could end it if they would stop volunteering for combat arms.

Pat Lang • 5 years ago

Draftees were paid at the same scale as volunteers in the mixed draft/volunteer army. We do not serve for the money. Our pay enables us to serve. The Saker is an ass.

Bill H • 5 years ago

Thank you. I read that piece too. When I joined the Navy my starting pay was $78/mth. After four months it went up to $83.20/mth. Right, we do not do it for the money.

If anyone had accused me of patriotism, I would have laughed at them, but the way I saw it was that national defense was something important and I wanted to be part of that, so I guess they would have had the last laugh.

Eugene Owens • 5 years ago

50 to 75 people from the Khazidiyeh and Az-Zahraa districts of Aleppo City hospitalized with respiratory problems. This was following a mortar barrage on those districts. Rebel chlorine attack suspected.

Fred • 5 years ago

Interesting interview on France 24 about cooperation between intellegence services taking out the planners of the 2015 terror attacks in France.
"Even the Russians and the Chinese cooperated." That has to be the understatement of the year.


Vicky SD • 5 years ago

What do people make of the fact that it seems Khashoggi apparently was recently married, the picture of him with his supposed fiancée was clearly photoshopped (used the same photo from his WaPo profile), and his family has indicated they knew nothing of this new fiancée?

It also seems interesting how the US has a tape of MBS ordering his silencing when we apparently knew little at the outset. Seems this turd is starting to stink a bit.

Julius HK • 5 years ago

We’ve seen several videos of them holding hands gently and walking about Istanbul...

Pat Lang • 5 years ago

Automated SIGINT collection produces such volumes of material based on standing targets that it often takes a while to sift through it. MBS's phone would be such a target. In any event Trump doesn't want to hear it.

Eric Newhill • 5 years ago

You would not consider as viable the hypothesis that Trump is using the assassination, and evidence of MbS' ordering of it, as leverage to achieve various objectives that MbS wasn't on board with (a resolution of the Yemen situation? Oil pricing? toning down jihadi support in the MENA? Other?).

Pat Lang • 5 years ago

It's viable but I don't think Trump is that subtle.