Author Archives: xbradtc
New From The Hudson Institute’s Center For American Seapower– Sharpening the Spear: The Carrier, the Joint Force, and High-End Conflict.
Spill and I had an interesting hour long conversation with the Center’s deputy director, and co-author of the report, Bryan McGrath, which, unfortunately for technical reasons we can’t podcast. With a little bit of luck, however, we’ll be able to have Bryan join us again soon to discuss the topic.
I’m going to shock you, dear reader, and admit that, like Bryan, I generally agree with President Obama, with regards to his policy toward China. I disagree on some specific issues, but not the general approach of emphasizing areas of cooperation, instead of those of divergence.
But as Bryan discussed with us, and as the report makes clear, there is a vast difference between not antagonizing China needlessly, and shutting down all discussion of the ramifications of a possible large scale conflict with China, and how that might best be fought.
The airstrike that struck the hospital in Afghanistan on Saturday, killing 22 people, was not called in by U.S. troops, the general in charge of U.S. forces in Afghanistan said Monday.Afghan forces in the northern Afghan city of Kunduz came under fire and requested support from a U.S. AC-130 gunship, which then opened fire on a hospital run by Doctors Without Borders, Gen. John Campbell told reporters Monday morning.Campbell would not go into further details about Saturday’s attack, but said U.S., NATO and Afghan officials all are conducting investigations into what happened.
Did a US AC-130 pound the heck out of a Doctors Without Borders hospital in Kunduz? It sure looks that way. But it appears the strike was called in by our Afghan allies.
And of coure DWB (MSF) is calling for an investigation. OK, sure. Let’s start with a couple of easy questions. Like, why did our Afghan allies report that armed enemies occupied the building? Were DWB providing sanctuary to armed forces? Did they do so under duress? Or were they willing accomplices? Understand, either way, if armed enemies occupied the building, it lost its legal protections under the law of war.
And why isn’t the hospital appropriately marked with the Red Cross or Red Crescent as required by international law and the law of war?
In theory, the idea of DWB, providing medical services to any and all, without taking sides in a conflict, is admirable. In practice, however, given the nature of conflict today, DWB hospitals and care tend to be situated in areas outside the control of a legitimate government. In effect, they become a health care provider for insurgent forces.
Fly to the DZ/LZ, jump, let the jets land, board up, and fly home. They didn’t even bring rifles.
Here’s what it looks like from the inside.
Russian warplanes began bombing American-backed Syrian opposition strongholds on Wednesday, a move that can be viewed as the latest example of American humiliation abroad.As was the case when Russians invaded Ukraine, the Russians cloaked their activity in lies.In the former example, Russian soldiers didn’t wear uniforms, a thinly-veiled move meant to create the impression the fighters were merely Ukrainian “separatists.”Likewise, Wednesday’s bombings ostensibly targeted Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (Isil); in fact, the strikes were aimed at moderate rebels and civilians – part of a plan to take out any opposition to their client, Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad.
That’s because it is weakness.