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(Salon)   John Kerry is totally blowing his sales pitch by trying to be all things to all people, and making ridiculous promises about what our military can do that no one in their right mind believes   (salon.com) divider line 294
    More: Obvious, global powers, Delaware Democratic Party, opposition to the Vietnam War, sanities, intelligence assessment, chemical weapons, Congressional Black Caucus, foreign ministers  
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2047 clicks; posted to Politics » on 06 Sep 2013 at 2:30 PM (46 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-09-06 11:11:56 PM

cirrhosis_and_halitosis: CynicalLA: cirrhosis_and_halitosis:  US foreign policy in the Middle East has been mindless for 50+ years, I wouldn't expect it to change now.

US foreign policy for the Middle East has always been Realpolitik.

Realpolitik is the perfect description, the US stopped using carrots (excepts for the Saudis) a long time ago and found the biggest stick.

The US has long coveted Syria, GW even gave them an honorary mention in his Axis of Evil.  Unfortunately it looks like the White House propaganda campaign is taking hold, one poll has public support up to 30%.  Putin has a few surprises for Obama if he is stupid enough to carry through.


It could turn into the biggest clusterfark ever. I'm sure russIa(Putin) has something planned if we attack. This isn't Iraq or Afghanistan. Russia has a lot invested in Syria.
 
2013-09-06 11:43:40 PM

CynicalLA: CynicalLA: cirrhosis_and_halitosis: netcentric: The US would be mindless to launch any strikes.   It would be mindless policy, I should say.

But if they do... I hope they spend the next week or two bulking up security around our bases and Embassies.
We will get hit eventually,  if we bomb them.

US foreign policy in the Middle East has been mindless for 50+ years, I wouldn't expect it to change now.

US foreign policy for the Middle East has always been Realpolitik.

One other point. Americans and a lot of other first world nation have benefited from this policy. Supporting oppressive regimes has kept prices low and that's something most Americans don't acknowledge.


True as well, and Europe will benefit even more if the US can bring Syria into the fold.  But I think most of Europe is afraid to get behind the US because plans could go awry.  Gazprom might have an 'unexpected' shortage in store for some of the EU warmongers this winter.

US objectives in the ME make perfect sense from a practical view, India, China, and others are hungry for more of the energy pie and America wants to assure itself the biggest piece.  Strong-arm dictators are the most effective means of keeping the lid on ethnic and religious tensions while Uncle Sam drinks their milkshake.  Hopefully the US kept some Saddam DNA for cloning purposes.

And Iran would be crazy not to take its shots while the US is preoccupied with Syria as they will be in the Imperial gunsights next.  Unless it's already a twofer deal, which I think is the case.  American sheeple will wave the flags a little slower if a few of their shiny boats spring a leak.
 
2013-09-06 11:56:42 PM
Just started re-watching West Wing this evening. Forgot that second episode ended with a plane being blown up with a rocket launcher based in Syria, on order of Syrian Defense Ministry. President vowed to blow the holy shiate out of them. Would that he had, would that he had (shush, it's my fiction/reality meld) Crazy how relevant that show remains.

/reminds me of DC when I moved here January 17, 2003
//bugged by Sam's first scene with his supposedly high priced escort, who apparently didn't know what POTUS meant. Cashiers at Giant here know what POTUS means.
 
2013-09-07 12:01:07 AM
It would be nice to have an excuse to sink Iran's navy. Kind of a bonus, really.
 
2013-09-07 12:07:08 AM
CynicalLA:  It could turn into the biggest clusterfark ever. I'm sure russIa(Putin) has something planned if we attack. This isn't Iraq or Afghanistan. Russia has a lot invested in Syria.

Russia was always the wildcard, but I am now convinced that Putin will walk his talk.  They don't even have to make their involvement overt.  It's widely known that Russia armed Syria to the teeth, who's to say who fired which one of their weapons from where in the fog of war.

Both Russia and China lost face when they threw Gaddafi and Libya to the Western wolves, they can't afford to let if happen again.  I wouldn't be surprised if there are a few Chinese subs in the Mediterranean and elsewhere for 'observation' purposes.  The 'Iranian' Navy might be far more extensive than previously thought.
 
2013-09-07 12:18:43 AM

cirrhosis_and_halitosis: I wouldn't be surprised if there are a few Chinese subs in the Mediterranean


*snrt*
 
2013-09-07 12:42:48 AM

vygramul: cirrhosis_and_halitosis: I wouldn't be surprised if there are a few Chinese subs in the Mediterranean

*snrt*


Sigh, always contributing with your insightful comments.
 
2013-09-07 12:43:48 AM

Bonanza Jellybean: Uh, what is going on with Kerry's face these days? Did I miss some illness or injury?


img.fark.net

HOLY FARK THE LIZARD PEOPLE GOT ANOTHER ONE

WAKE UP SHEEPLE
 
2013-09-07 12:50:55 AM

Bonanza Jellybean: Uh, what is going on with Kerry's face these days? Did I miss some illness or injury?

[i.imgur.com image 450x290][i.imgur.com image 600x300]


Pierce Brosnan had the same issue.

i1.ytimg.com
 
2013-09-07 12:55:46 AM

HotIgneous Intruder: Wake Up Sheeple: IMHO, Obama's presidency has been about having situations come to a final resolution, not about breaking more vases.

That's pretty wacky.
But perhaps a bit optimistic for my taste.
I'm afraid Obama has been in over his head since the beginning.

Obama is in check and unless he cowboys up, he's going to be a laughing stock at home and abroad. That's the biggest reason he'll do some cruise missiles -- to save face


The only laughingstock I saw in the last 10 years was when the world said there were no WMDs and Bush went into Iraq and never found them. Double when he never found bin Laden.

If Obama doesn't get approval and doesn't go in, the world will say "..." I suppose you think the British prime minister is a laughingstock now too. The world doesn't want to help us out, why would they laugh if we don't bomb? Assad might laugh, but who cares?

I think you project too much.
 
2013-09-07 01:03:55 AM

MurphyMurphy: Bonanza Jellybean: Uh, what is going on with Kerry's face these days? Did I miss some illness or injury?

[img.fark.net image 600x300]

HOLY FARK THE LIZARD PEOPLE GOT ANOTHER ONE

WAKE UP SHEEPLE


The only advice I can give is to release giant cats nearby to take care of the lizard people. The sheeple are easily rounded up with dogs. But it's always best not to wake them in the first place.
 
2013-09-07 01:11:19 AM

MurphyMurphy: Bonanza Jellybean: Uh, what is going on with Kerry's face these days? Did I miss some illness or injury?


I think he's got a Pinocchio thing going on with his chin.
 
2013-09-07 01:52:19 AM

cirrhosis_and_halitosis: vygramul: cirrhosis_and_halitosis: I wouldn't be surprised if there are a few Chinese subs in the Mediterranean

*snrt*

Sigh, always contributing with your insightful comments.


I'm not worried about china too much. They are too monetarily committed to our country unlike Russia.
 
2013-09-07 02:52:37 AM

Bonanza Jellybean: Uh, what is going on with Kerry's face these days? Did I miss some illness or injury?

[i.imgur.com image 450x290][i.imgur.com image 600x300]


Looks like Botox malpractice got him.
 
2013-09-07 02:57:52 AM

cirrhosis_and_halitosis: CynicalLA:  It could turn into the biggest clusterfark ever. I'm sure russIa(Putin) has something planned if we attack. This isn't Iraq or Afghanistan. Russia has a lot invested in Syria.

Russia was always the wildcard, but I am now convinced that Putin will walk his talk.  They don't even have to make their involvement overt.  It's widely known that Russia armed Syria to the teeth, who's to say who fired which one of their weapons from where in the fog of war.

Both Russia and China lost face when they threw Gaddafi and Libya to the Western wolves, they can't afford to let if happen again.  I wouldn't be surprised if there are a few Chinese subs in the Mediterranean and elsewhere for 'observation' purposes.  The 'Iranian' Navy might be far more extensive than previously thought.


Few is a definite stretch. Even 1 with their limited capability is a stretch.
 
2013-09-07 03:06:52 AM

CynicalLA: cirrhosis_and_halitosis: vygramul: cirrhosis_and_halitosis: I wouldn't be surprised if there are a few Chinese subs in the Mediterranean

*snrt*

Sigh, always contributing with your insightful comments.

I'm not worried about china too much. They are too monetarily committed to our country unlike Russia.


It's highly unlikely that China would try anything militarily but having some subs in the Mediterranean and elsewhere would be a good training exercise for their crews in a hostile (but not for them) combat environment.  China buys a lot of oil from Iran, they have much interest in how events unfold.

As for monetary commitment, US/China is more of a symbiotic relationship that could have disruptions.  Russia and China together hold 25% of US foreign debt, markets could be moved just on rumor of diversification.  Or iPad shortages.

It's a confrontation that's probably much further down the road but China won't stay America's sweatshop forever.
 
2013-09-07 03:14:39 AM

cirrhosis_and_halitosis: I wouldn't be surprised if there are a few Chinese subs in the Mediterranean and elsewhere for 'observation' purposes


I would. Getting there undetected from the pacific would be a huge biatch, even for a nuke. The route one way is more than halfway around the equator no matter how you cut it (submarines can't get through the Suez submerged even if they wanted to). Food would be the first major concern. I've done lextended patrols and when we were done the freeze locker and the canned food lockers were empty. There actually is a limit on how long a boat can stay out. It's much longer than say WWII standards for certain but it is all about how much food that you can carry in the end. If you can't fuel the crew then  the mission fails. The maximum length is somewhere in the 120 day range. In your scenario about half of that would be spent just transiting to the Syrian coast which means a week or so there and then transiting back. Unless China has somewhere around 60 nuke boats (they don't IIRC it's closer to less than a dozen including SSBN;s which not only are unsuited for this type of mission but are also strategic assets that never will be placed somewhere where detection is likely) fully dedicated to patrolling off of the Syrian coast you have no idea what you are talking about.
 
2013-09-07 03:20:06 AM

wasteofspace: cirrhosis_and_halitosis: CynicalLA:  It could turn into the biggest clusterfark ever. I'm sure russIa(Putin) has something planned if we attack. This isn't Iraq or Afghanistan. Russia has a lot invested in Syria.

Russia was always the wildcard, but I am now convinced that Putin will walk his talk.  They don't even have to make their involvement overt.  It's widely known that Russia armed Syria to the teeth, who's to say who fired which one of their weapons from where in the fog of war.

Both Russia and China lost face when they threw Gaddafi and Libya to the Western wolves, they can't afford to let if happen again.  I wouldn't be surprised if there are a few Chinese subs in the Mediterranean and elsewhere for 'observation' purposes.  The 'Iranian' Navy might be far more extensive than previously thought.

Few is a definite stretch. Even 1 with their limited capability is a stretch.


From what I've read China has 55 subs of varying capacity, I would think that they would want to get at least one or more some live training.  It wouldn't really matter if they were easily detected as they wouldn't be viewed as a threat.
 
2013-09-07 03:20:17 AM
cirrhosis_and_halitosis:

It's a confrontation that's probably much further down the road but China won't stay America's sweatshop forever.

The U.S. corporations (and other nations) will find yet another cheap place for manufacturing long before China tires of it. But you are probably right that a confrontation is more likely when trading ties diminish.
 
2013-09-07 03:40:38 AM

cirrhosis_and_halitosis: From what I've read China has 55 subs of varying capacity, I would think that they would want to get at least one or more some live training. It wouldn't really matter if they were easily detected as they wouldn't be viewed as a threat.


Dude. Just stop. I've been there and done that. We would know beyond a doubt if Chinese (or Iranian, or Russian for that matter) boats were out there. The Med is thick with submarines and they all have their assigned boxes on the NATO side. Any other boat inside that box is by definition a non-NATO boat. Diesel boats have to snorkel and that's their weak spot. Always has been and always will be. AIP propulsion has its benefits but it still is power limited and relies on snorkeling to supplement that system. China's or Iran's fleet of boats are small time concern's in this right now.
 
2013-09-07 03:43:37 AM

Radioactive Ass: cirrhosis_and_halitosis: I wouldn't be surprised if there are a few Chinese subs in the Mediterranean and elsewhere for 'observation' purposes

I would. Getting there undetected from the pacific would be a huge biatch, even for a nuke. The route one way is more than halfway around the equator no matter how you cut it (submarines can't get through the Suez submerged even if they wanted to). Food would be the first major concern. I've done lextended patrols and when we were done the freeze locker and the canned food lockers were empty. There actually is a limit on how long a boat can stay out. It's much longer than say WWII standards for certain but it is all about how much food that you can carry in the end. If you can't fuel the crew then  the mission fails. The maximum length is somewhere in the 120 day range. In your scenario about half of that would be spent just transiting to the Syrian coast which means a week or so there and then transiting back. Unless China has somewhere around 60 nuke boats (they don't IIRC it's closer to less than a dozen including SSBN;s which not only are unsuited for this type of mission but are also strategic assets that never will be placed somewhere where detection is likely) fully dedicated to patrolling off of the Syrian coast you have no idea what you are talking about.


Thanks for the first-hand info, it's difficult to find details on Chinese capabilities and I was obviously speculating on something out of my depth.  China held naval drills in the Mediterranean last summer but they did enter through Suez.

More speculation:  The Chinese dug a large tunnel to the Med.  They are the industrious type.
 
2013-09-07 04:01:20 AM

cirrhosis_and_halitosis: More speculation: The Chinese dug a large tunnel to the Med. They are the industrious type.


LOL!

I do mean that, you actually got a physical laugh out of me with that.

On a more serious note there is a potential risk involving submarines. Not PLAN boats or Iranian boats but Russian boats. The bear still swims in the Med and it's not a secret. It never has been.
 
2013-09-07 04:17:41 AM

MurphyMurphy: Bonanza Jellybean: Uh, what is going on with Kerry's face these days? Did I miss some illness or injury?



HOLY FARK THE LIZARD PEOPLE GOT ANOTHER ONE

WAKE UP SHEEPLE


looks like an over-tanned, zombie muppet
 
2013-09-07 04:30:50 AM
Glad to make you laugh, I had to extend a peace offering after getting my ass handed on sub warfare.  I have read some but most still mostly limited to Das Boot and Hunt for Red October and my squid friend is out of contact.

While I got you on the line, what is your perspective on this article?  It sounds like US Navy might have a weakness for asymmetrical warfare under certain conditions.

Myth Of US Invincibility Floats In The Persian Gulf
 
2013-09-07 04:32:34 AM
Above meant for Radioactive Ass
 
2013-09-07 07:07:12 AM
First Powell, now Kerry. Who thinks it's a good idea to use our top diplomat to pimp for war?
 
2013-09-07 08:16:58 AM

CynicalLA: cirrhosis_and_halitosis: vygramul: cirrhosis_and_halitosis: I wouldn't be surprised if there are a few Chinese subs in the Mediterranean

*snrt*

Sigh, always contributing with your insightful comments.

I'm not worried about china too much. They are too monetarily committed to our country unlike Russia.


Germany's #1 trading partner: Britain
Germany's #2 trading partner: France
Germany's #1 investment: Russia
Year: 1912

Yeah, economics never really slowed down the stupidity of war
 
2013-09-07 08:25:11 AM
Late to the thread, and forgive me if it's already been mentioned, but has anyone considered the possibility that Obama is intentionally having Kerry tank this so that the blame for inaction goes on Congress instead? I mean, it is a risk but that would be the best possible political outcome here.
 
2013-09-07 08:35:46 AM
Assad is the pawn. He's done. Squashed like  bug between Obama and Putin and Bandar.
 
2013-09-07 10:07:54 AM

OhioUGrad: kindms: no one wants to get in this fight. NO ONE

Not sure why the powers that be seem to intent on ignoring the will of almost every citizen in this nation

They can't even sell it because their hearts aren't in it. The BS can be smelled a mile away

This basically comes down to the POTUS issued an ultimatum, doing nothing makes us seem wishy washy and the only way to save face is to actual inflict some death on people.

I still have a feeling he isn't really trying because he is just trolling the GOP because now they are the ones in the position of damned if you do, damned if you don't. We won't find out for sure until they actually vote on it.


It looks like Putin has completely out-maneuvered and embarrassed Obama.
 
2013-09-07 10:44:02 AM

Nemo's Brother: OhioUGrad: kindms: no one wants to get in this fight. NO ONE

Not sure why the powers that be seem to intent on ignoring the will of almost every citizen in this nation

They can't even sell it because their hearts aren't in it. The BS can be smelled a mile away

This basically comes down to the POTUS issued an ultimatum, doing nothing makes us seem wishy washy and the only way to save face is to actual inflict some death on people.

I still have a feeling he isn't really trying because he is just trolling the GOP because now they are the ones in the position of damned if you do, damned if you don't. We won't find out for sure until they actually vote on it.

It looks like Putin has completely out-maneuvered and embarrassed Obama.


I think if that was the case, he wouldn't have even discussed Syria. He probably told Putin, we don't want to really do anything in Syria, but I'm having so much fun embarrassing the GOP I want to keep up the charade.
 
2013-09-07 10:51:28 AM

Bonanza Jellybean: Uh, what is going on with Kerry's face these days? Did I miss some illness or injury?

[i.imgur.com image 450x290][i.imgur.com image 600x300]


Too much botox. Seriously.
 
2013-09-07 12:21:10 PM

cirrhosis_and_halitosis: Glad to make you laugh, I had to extend a peace offering after getting my ass handed on sub warfare.  I have read some but most still mostly limited to Das Boot and Hunt for Red October and my squid friend is out of contact.

While I got you on the line, what is your perspective on this article?  It sounds like US Navy might have a weakness for asymmetrical warfare under certain conditions.

Myth Of US Invincibility Floats In The Persian Gulf


I would be happy if Iran decided that it had what it needed to sink the US Navy and carried out such a plan.

The thing about exercises, especially ones like that one, is that an awful lot of it is made up. The point isn't about testing capabilities, but about teaching officers how to think about the problem. The specific results are often about as valid as a game of Dungeons and Dragons is in figuring out what tactics would work in defeating a dragon.

As far as refloating the fleet and starting over with different assumptions, of COURSE you're going to do that. What, you bring officers together, some of whom traveled 1000s of miles, and say, "whoops! Game over! You can go home now," after an hour? And "run by computer" != "super-accurate." All models are wrong, some models are useful. My game of Civilization V is run by computer, and the economic benefit to roads is negative. That's not realistic at all.

So people are reading way too much into a wargame that had some novel thinking but ultimately relied on a bunch of assumptions that weren't true then and are less true now.
 
2013-09-07 12:47:19 PM

cirrhosis_and_halitosis: Glad to make you laugh, I had to extend a peace offering after getting my ass handed on sub warfare.  I have read some but most still mostly limited to Das Boot and Hunt for Red October and my squid friend is out of contact.

While I got you on the line, what is your perspective on this article?  It sounds like US Navy might have a weakness for asymmetrical warfare under certain conditions.

Myth Of US Invincibility Floats In The Persian Gulf


That is something which is beyond my paygrade and experience but here's what I can say about it. The navy actually took that wargame seriously and has (as I understand it) addressed the vulnerabilities that were exploited as best as possible. I personally doubt that there is a 100% fix to what was done to them in that wargame and navies are always vulnerable things because unlike armies there are no trees to hide behind when being shot at.

There's a good reason why we called surface ships "Targets", and yes, that included our own navy ships. Anyone who claims that any navy is unsinkable is deluding themselves. Ships fall into categories that fall between one torpedo and four torpedoes and disabled and unable to perform its mission is almost as good as a kill. The best that you can do is to keep the area as sanitized as possible and have a good supply of countermeasures available just in case and hope like hell that they will work as advertized.
 
2013-09-07 02:46:03 PM

FatherDale: First Powell, now Kerry. Who thinks it's a good idea to use our top diplomat to pimp for war?


potus, that's who
 
2013-09-07 02:52:58 PM

Radioactive Ass: cirrhosis_and_halitosis: Glad to make you laugh, I had to extend a peace offering after getting my ass handed on sub warfare.  I have read some but most still mostly limited to Das Boot and Hunt for Red October and my squid friend is out of contact.

While I got you on the line, what is your perspective on this article?  It sounds like US Navy might have a weakness for asymmetrical warfare under certain conditions.

Myth Of US Invincibility Floats In The Persian Gulf

That is something which is beyond my paygrade and experience but here's what I can say about it. The navy actually took that wargame seriously and has (as I understand it) addressed the vulnerabilities that were exploited as best as possible. I personally doubt that there is a 100% fix to what was done to them in that wargame and navies are always vulnerable things because unlike armies there are no trees to hide behind when being shot at.

There's a good reason why we called surface ships "Targets", and yes, that included our own navy ships. Anyone who claims that any navy is unsinkable is deluding themselves. Ships fall into categories that fall between one torpedo and four torpedoes and disabled and unable to perform its mission is almost as good as a kill. The best that you can do is to keep the area as sanitized as possible and have a good supply of countermeasures available just in case and hope like hell that they will work as advertized.


For some reason, SUBFOR has never been interested in any analytical support from the Navy's FFRDC. It's not like they couldn't use it, based on the exercises of which I've been a part.
 
2013-09-07 04:50:08 PM

vygramul: For some reason, SUBFOR has never been interested in any analytical support from the Navy's FFRDC. It's not like they couldn't use it, based on the exercises of which I've been a part.


SUBDEVGRU\SUBDEVRON 12 has that covered. We have almost always played it "Soft" in exercises because we were mimicking what we assume the enemy may do (we are playing by their rules so to speak). That's to help everyone else train their ASW forces, they need to be able to find an enemy to fight and so we make it easy for them to do that otherwise they would get stuck at the "Find them" stage and not exercise the rest of their toys. When we play by our own rules carriers end up with a smouldering green smoke sitting on their flight deck with no idea where it came from.

When truly and fully unleashed a US boat has a simulated kill ratio of up to around 700 kills and 3 being killed ratio in real world conditions. That was with the Nautilus back in the 50's, a vastly inferior platform by today's standards and our surface forces ASW capabilities have greatly improved so even if you quarter that it's still over 50 to 1 in our favor. I'll take those odds any day of the week. If you want to kill a sub you need another sub to do it, that's more of a 50\50 equation in most cases. That's why Carrier Battle Groups have a boat or two with them and it was one of the 688's main missions kept in mind when they were first designed.

That's why the expense of a nuke boat is worth it. That and surveillance missions where any other platform would be spotted and whatever we wanted to see doesn't happen. Add in a AN\BYG-1 or AN\BSY-2 and any surface ship within range are pretty much farked if we want it to be. That's not me being cocky, that's just the facts of life.
 
2013-09-07 05:26:33 PM

Radioactive Ass: If you want to kill a sub you need another sub to do it


That's not what the P-3 guys say :)

Seriously, though, typically, your best anti-x is another x. When I was in ROTC, the saying was, "The best tank killer on the battlefield is another tank." Which basically was a way of saying don't be stupid and try to use LAWs against a T-72.

Radioactive Ass: Add in a AN\BYG-1 or AN\BSY-2 and any surface ship within range are pretty much farked if we want it to be. That's not me being cocky, that's just the facts of life.


I was in an exercise white cell when an attack sub guy was taking bets on how soon before the HVU would be sunk. He lost some because, as he put it, "I forgot that was a boomer PLAYING an attack sub. You have to add a few seconds for those guys."
 
2013-09-07 06:04:03 PM

vygramul: That's not what the P-3 guys say :)

Seriously, though, typically, your best anti-x is another x. When I was in ROTC, the saying was, "The best tank killer on the battlefield is another tank." Which basically was a way of saying don't be stupid and try to use LAWs against a T-72.


The P3's are good, no doubt about it. However they have to find us first and unless we are near or at PD their MAD gear has a very slim chance of locating us. Only sloppy captains who can't resist the temptation to put eyes on target do that on approach unless their task is to take pictures and not kill the target. Polishing the cannonball is strongly discouraged and drilled into PCO's at officer SUBSCOL and down at the range at AUTEC. Close is all it takes, no need to be all that precise when the weapon is built to look for its target all on its own.

As an aside, the navy had, at one time, plans to install a mast with a box launcher with Stinger type missiles on it to counter dipping helicopters and P3 type of threats (in the 688i class when they moved the planes to the bow and opened up some room in the sail). They canned the idea due to it using up valuable real estate inside the sail better used for surveillance gear which actually would be used.

I was in an exercise white cell when an attack sub guy was taking bets on how soon before the HVU would be sunk. He lost some because, as he put it, "I forgot that was a boomer PLAYING an attack sub. You have to add a few seconds for those guys."

Yeah you do. Tactical considerations were secondary when they were designed. It's all about how sonar and fire control systems are integrated. Fast attacks are all about the front of the boat while boomers are all about the middle of the boat and their systems reflect that. The old boomers shared resources with the missile fire control systems in MCC (MK88) and even that was a late modification, before then they carried boxes of computer punch cards with per-calculated trajectories for expected patrol areas. Those computers were literally the size of refrigerators and there were about a dozen of them. Their entire computing power was about the same as an IBM 386 and they looked just like what you might have seen in a 60's sci-fi movies, flashing lights and all. The disk drive (a whopping 35 mb) weighed in the neighborhood of 50 lbs.
 
2013-09-07 08:23:07 PM

2wolves: There are no "good guys" in the Syrian conflict.  Once you accept that your option set becomes much clearer.


It's the ultimate no win scenario.

Help rebels? Helping Jihadists win is not winning.

Help Assad? Helping the guy who used CW on his own people win is not winning.

Do something?  Might make a bad situation worse. Not winning.

Do nothing? Make decades of anti WMD rhetoric a joke overnight further crumbling any semblance of belief in international law.

Even Charlie Sheen is at a loss here.

I still say lob a couple of cruise missiles at some of his military infrastructure and call it a day.
 
2013-09-07 11:39:40 PM

Radioactive Ass: DamnYankees: For me this is the key quote:

"[T]he policy [Kerry] is peddling is so exquisitely poised as to be untenable: a military strike that's effective enough to deter Assad from using chemical weapons again, but not enough to tip the balance of power to the rebels "

I mean, this is farking absurd, hubristic to the max. Anyone who believes we can actually do this...I don't know what to say.

You can't. This is what I've been saying all along. This proposed action is giving aid and assistance to the rebels who, despite all of Kerry.s bloviated blustering blathering to the contrary, are tied to Al Qaeda. This alone is enough to not do anything at all to help them. There are actual laws against helping them in any way starting with the Patriot Act and ending at the constitution itself.

Then there's the tiny little detail of us committing an act of war without any treaty ties or UN approval to justify it. What happens when Syria decides to declare war on us? They would be completely within their rights to do that. Then every act of what we now call terrorism would become legitimate acts committed in a war setting if they are behind them under the guise of sabotage, a legal tactic of warfare.

There is nothing good that will come from us doing this. People will die and that won't bring back the people already dead. We will be breaking our own laws. We will be breaking international laws. We will be risking a war which will absolutely require boots on the ground. We will be inviting terrorist attacks at home that will be hard to prosecute as such.

All for what? To send a message that may or may not have any effect in a civil war that has no good guys in it as far as we are concerned. Everyone there hates us and would slit our throats in our sleep if given the chance. This whole misadventure is poisonous at several levels and the people advocating it are either complete and utter fools or are looking for some kickbacks somewhere down the line.



Not to mention, if Al Qaeda actually was behind the chemical attack (which isn't far-fetched in the least) as a means of getting the international community to rally against Assad (which they have) - then our Military will have been effectively commandeered by Al Qaeda to carry out its goals.

The rest of the world would be right to think of the U.S. as stupid.

And now look at how many people are defending action by saying that we're compelled to intervene because of what Obama said (before he had all of the facts). Obama farked us on this one.
 
2013-09-07 11:44:35 PM

The Muthaship: /you gotta be deep in the tank for this administration to advocate for the pitiful mess we are about to create.


I'm creating a lot of Farkies with links to this thread, so I can remember who all of the cheerleaders were.
 
2013-09-07 11:54:53 PM
http://www.sfgate.com/politics/article/Feinstein-Boxer-buck-constituen ts-on-Syria-strike-4793945.php">http://www.sfgate.com/politics/articl e/Feinstein-Boxer-buck-constituen ts-on-Syria-strike-4793945.php


It's astonishingly telling that our Government's Leadership's continuing salespitch on bombing the crap out of Syria isn't

"Here is evidence that the chemical weapons were used on Assad's orders,"

it's

"Look at the children! Look at them! Look how sad! We have to punish someone!!!"


They've found a sucker in the American public - pull a nice Appeal to Emotion and Americans will flock in droves to line up and march behind the agenda-of-the-day.
 
2013-09-08 03:28:28 AM

BigNumber12: http://www.sfgate.com/politics/article/Feinstein-Boxer-buck-constitue n ts-on-Syria-strike-4793945.php">http://www.sfgate.com/politics/articl e/Feinstein-Boxer-buck-constituen ts-on-Syria-strike-4793945.php


It's astonishingly telling that our Government's Leadership's continuing salespitch on bombing the crap out of Syria isn't

"Here is evidence that the chemical weapons were used on Assad's orders,"

it's

"Look at the children! Look at them! Look how sad! We have to punish someone!!!"


They've found a sucker in the American public - pull a nice Appeal to Emotion and Americans will flock in droves to line up and march behind the agenda-of-the-day.


Somehow I don't think that's going to happen in this instance. Too many people wanting to see the evidence.
 
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